Last summer on a trip to Nashville, I stumbled upon a pretty little fresh flower truck (Amelia’s Flower Truck for anyone that might be familiar) and fell completely in LOVE with the concept. If you know me, you probably know it was plastered all over my personal Instagram. And if you were with me on that trip, you can probably recall my ridiculous, over-the-top reaction when I spotted the pale green VW bus parked down the street. To say I was excited is an understatement. Who doesn't love some fresh flowers, some retro vibes, and a great photo opp?!
After my encounter with Amelia’s, I vividly remember thinking “ugh, I wish something like this existed back at home.”
Fast forward about a year and that wish came true. I could not be more excited to introduce you to Victoria's Mobile Flower Shop, the very first mobile flower shop to hit the streets of Pittsburgh!
The adorable little blue-ish green truck made its official debut at GRLPWR’S Self Love Sunday Fest and I am stoked to say I was the first official customer! Here's a closer look:
Local resident Victoria Miess came up with the idea to create a mobile flower shop this past February and with some help from family and friends brought that idea to life in just four short months. Talk about hustle! Now in their first month of business, they're hitting all of the go-to spots bringing a little flower power to the neighborhoods of Pittsburgh.
Before you venture out to hunt down some flowers, there's a few things to note. First, Victoria’s stock is priced per bloom. That means it's a fully build-your-own concept. Type, colors, greenery, bouquet size; the choice is all yours! Your options range from simple (baby's breath and eucalyptus) to a little more exotic (peonies and protea). Once you pick your variety, Victoria will cut, wrap, and tie up a pretty little package for you. (Cash and cards are accepted!) And trust me when I say you're going to want to snap a few shots for the 'gram. I can't imagine a more perfect aesthetic! Plus, your photo just might make it on to the shop's page. Tag @victoriasmobileflowershop and use the hashtag "#IMustHaveVictorias" to let them know you stopped by!
Pro Tip from Victoria herself: When you get home only place your blooms in about an inch of water. Every three days, cut off the submerged portion of the stems at an angle. This method will help keep your flowers fresh longer!
On top of being a super cute, fun, small business itself, Victoria's also plays a larger part in supporting local farms. Most of the blooms you'll find on the truck are sourced from the greater Pittsburgh area. If you're on the hunt for those straight-from-the-farm blooms, be sure to keep an eye out for a "local" label on the truck's flower buckets. Hat tip to Piscarcik Flowers, Cherry Valley Organics, and more for helping Victoria bring some color to the Burgh!
Now and through the summer, you’ll be able to catch Victoria at some of your favorite Pittsburgh stops. Check out their upcoming schedule and snag yourself some pretty posies! Oh, and of course throw them a follow on Instagram and Facebook. You're going to want in on the flower inspo.
Are you a Harry Potter fan? Or even just a lover of all things Christmas? If the answer to either question is yes, you're going to want to keep reading. Pitt's Cathedral of Learning is pretty much Pittsburgh's very own Hogwarts. And to make it even better it's an absolute GEM during the holiday season. It's high ceilings and castle-like vibes are dreamy any time of the year, but the Christmas trees and enormous wreaths really make it a must-see every December. I might be a proud Pitt Business grad, but you've gotta trust me when I say this isn't just my Pitt pride talking.
Aside from the the fact that the architecture of the building is gorgeous, The Cathedral is also home to over 30 Nationality Rooms that celebrate cultures from all over the world. We're talking everything from Chinese to Polish. And each holiday season these rooms are decorated based on each country's traditions. It's really cool to see how celebrations differ from country to country and even continent to continent. It's a Christmas photo opp and history class in one. Win!
The Nationality Rooms will be decorated through January 12th so you have plenty of time to plan your visit. However, it would be a smart move to check out the hours before you head to Oakland. The university is closed from Christmas Eve to New Year's Day (12/24-12/1). In terms of tours, you have two options: a guided tour or a tape tour. The guided tour is led by a tour guide and the tape tour is self-guided— AKA you get a key to access the rooms on your own. Just listen to the audio recordings in each room to hear the facts.
The best part about this whole thing? It's only 4 BUCKS per adult. That might be the cheapest thing you'll do all year. And in my opinion, the best 4 bucks you spend all year.
While you're in Oakland, you might also want to check out the holiday display at Phipp's Conservatory, the light display in Schenley Plaza, or even grab a bite at The Porch. Their pizzas are delicious. Grab a few friends and plan a festive holiday adventure!
Apples, and pumpkins, and gourds, oh my! My annual trip to Soergel's might just be my favorite part of the whole fall season. With pumpkin patches, apple orchards, and sunflower fields all in one spot, it's pretty hard to beat. Here's the scoop:
Let's start with the main attraction: The picking! If you ask me, it's smart to hit the apple orchard first. Lugging a pumpkin around may be a great workout, but it's also going to be a huge pain. in. the. ass. Save the sweat for the gym. You can choose to pick a 1/4, 1/2, or full "peck" of apples. (Note: A peck is a weird unit of dry measurement. All you have to worry about is what size bag you want.) Pay for the bag in advance and fill 'er up in the orchard. This may be a time when tall friends come in handy. The best ones always seem to be at the top!
If you really just came for the hard cider (we'll get to that in a minute) and you're not much of a DIYer, head down the hill to take your pick from the bins of pre-picked pumpkins. From teeny tiny to enormous, there's literally a pumpkin for everyone. We're talking thousands. And If you're not feeling a traditional pumpkin, you're in luck. Soergel's is stocked with pretty much every member of the gourd family in every shape, size, and color you can think of. I'm a personal fan of the white pumpkins! They're unique and look awesome with fall flowers.
Aside from just pumpkin patches and apple picking, there's a lot of little bonuses at Soergel's Fall Festival. Check out the hay rides, games, sunflower fields, and food. Lots and lots of food! We're talking fresh apple cider, hot cinnamon rolls, kettle corn, BBQ, baked goods, ice cream, and more. But the best part? Arsenal Cider has a tasting room at Soergels! Pick your pumpkin, chow down on a cinnamon roll, and then sip on a hard cider. Literally, I can't think of a better October Saturday.
Ready for an adventure? Here's the need-to-know. Soergel's Fall Festival runs every Saturday and Sunday from 11am- 5pm from the end of September to the end of October at the Soergel farm in Wexford. Entry is totally free and there's tons of free parking down the road at Orchard Hill Church. The festival is also credit card-friendly, so if you forget to hit the ATM don't stress. You'll still walk away with your perfect pumpkin.
Meet Indian Meadows– a semi-magical, totally-stunning hillside of flowers tucked away in a community park just east of Pittsburgh. I stumbled upon this golden beauty on my way to a family picnic and my eyes completely lit up when it came into view. This small section of Boyce Park is home to thousands of Black Eyed Susans, a common daisy-like flower with a deep yellow color. It’s truly breathtaking– especially if you’re as flower-obsessed as I am. Browse my Instagram for the evidence.
If I haven’t made my point in the first 5 sentences of this post, you really have to get yourself out to Indian Meadows this summer. Boyce Park is a little bit of a haul from the city, but this hidden gem is well worth the 30(ish) minute drive out to Plum Borough. Yep, Plum is indeed a type of fruit and a suburb in Allegheny County. Fun fact: Several of my family members live in the Plum area and I even lived in Plum for a summer in college! (The more ya know)
While it would be extra wanderlust-y to call this a field of wildflowers, that isn’t quite the case. The 6-acre field was intentionally planted by the Allegheny County Parks Foundation for environmental reasons. So while we’ll have to drop “wild” from flowers, everything about this place still feels like you’ve been transported to a rustic countryside. And who ever would have guessed it can be found just outside of Pittsburgh?!
Pack a picnic, grab your camera, hit the road, and head to Indian Meadows for views and a dose of fresh summer air.
Mom moment: While it is super tempting to wade into the posies to get the perfect Instagram shot (as I did), it’s very frowned upon by the parks foundation. I didn’t think of it in the moment, but trails left in the gardens take away from the natural feel and all around can be harmful to the health of the flowers. Not to mention there’s always a major risk of taking home a tick. Confession: One of the foundation’s employees caught me in the flowers during my visit. BUSTED. If you’ve read a lot of my posts, bending the rules seems to be a theme. Oops?