Two of my good friends are seniors at Mizzou, so it seems like I’m always in Columbia for some reason or another. My pal Britney’s birthday is next week, so I decided to pay her a visit this past weekend.

I worked a photo gig, and it ran a little late so I arrived in Columbia several hours later than anticipated. We immediately caught up over salads and soups at one of our favorite downtown eateries, Ingredient. I, like usual, got the sweet leaf salad (think mixed greens with assorted berries, and Gorgonzola – delish). But I also decided to mix it up, and order the tomato basil bisque. Honestly, I’m not the biggest soup fan but I ended up making a great choice. The bisque was just the right texture – not too creamy but not to chunky either. Next up, we went to top ten wines which is only a few blocks away from Ingredient. The tasting room was packed when we arrived! After only a few minutes of waiting we got our drinks. A glass of prosecco for me, and rosé sangria for Brit.

The next morning we (thankfully) beat the heavy brunch crowd at Cafe Berlin. I got their chai, and anonymous tacos. Tacos are easily one of my favorite foods. So no way could I pass it up, especially when they’re served with vegan sausage. I’ve been a vegetarian for going on 5 years now (which is a tough feat for someone living in rural Missouri) and I get unreasonably excited when I can substitute vegetarian proteins in restaurant dishes.

For the past several months I’ve been obsessed with succulents. I have been buying succulents online, and planting them in my mini apartment garden. Knowing this, Britney took me to Helmi’s, a garden center several miles outside of Columbia. Helmi’s had a large variety of large outdoor trees and plants in their nursery, as well as a very extensive indoor selection. They had everything from common house plants to air plants and succulents. Helmi’s even carries a wide range of antiques ranging from mirrors to glass vases. I had a really hard time picking out only one plant to take home with me, but I eventually decided on a beautifully purple echeveria, an air plant, and several mini pumpkins for an upcoming Halloween party.

Britney is graduating this spring, and one of her many dreams for her post grad life involves working in the business of small boutiques. I hope that she’ll eventually open her own boutique so that I’ll have easy access to her fabulous eye for fashion. Until then, she’ll have to take me to her favorite boutiques. This time, we visited Kelly Fields Boutique. They had a lovely fall selection of sweaters, leggings, and a lot of Kendra Scott jewelry (they even offer a discount on Kendra Scott during your birth month, so hit them up).


After my grand tour of Columbia, Britney mentioned an Octoberfest celebration that was happening in Rocheport. Rocheport is only a few minutes west of Columbia on I-70, so we hopped in our car and headed that way. Rocheport is located right on the Katy Trail, and is a picturesque little town. There were a bunch of cute houses, BnB’s, and antique shops. Octoberfest was located in a small clearing right off the trail. The festival consisted of a small stage with local bluegrass musicians, food trucks, and various craft pavilions. The festival wasn’t exactly our scene, so we headed back into town and made the decision to get pastries at Meriweather Cafe before going to a wine tasting at Les Bourgeois.

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