A Day on the First Coast | 3 Things to do in Amelia Island and Fernandina

Things to do in Fernandina and Amelia Island

One of the things I love about living on the First Coast is the plethora of adventures that await us right outside our back door. From the river to the beaches there are ample things to do, places to shop, and great food to taste. Should we decide to escape the boundaries of the city there is St. Augustine just South, and Amelia Island and Fernandina just North. Tourists flock to St. Augustine every year, but Fernandina and Amelia remain a bit less congested.

Mama Fierce | Outfit Post | Body Con Dress


Just because you're a mom doesn't mean you can't be fierce. A lesson I learned from my first introduction into motherhood five years ago. In fact I've found that being a mom has brought out the more assertive side of my personality. Pregnancy is a perfect opportunity to rock the curves God blessed you with. That's one of the reasons I love body con maternity dresses. They're what I call "Bumptastic"!


Best Babymoons | Amy West on The Chat

Amy West in Scrub IslandIf you are an expecting couple, or know someone expecting you may have heard of a Babymoon. What exactly is a "Babymoon"? It's the last big hurrah before baby comes. It's a chance for the expecting couple to escape and spend some dedicated time focused on each other. Bringing a baby into this world is a gift. One that changes life as you know it. I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate and prepare than to escape the every day norm and find each other anew amidst eye opening experiences. Recently I revealed my Top 10 picks for 10Best.com and visited The Chat talk show to discuss the top 5. Catch the highlights here. 

The Shores Resort and Spa Family Escape to Daytona Beach

Amy West, travel blogger at The Shores Resort and Spa in Daytona
Instead of one big babymoon before this little one arrives, we opted for a bit of a babymoon tour. After spending a night at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, a few weeks later we headed over to Daytona Beach for an experience at The Shores Resort and Spa ( also featured in my 10Best Best Babymoon story). Our oceanfront room gave us a perfect view of the sparkling coastline during the day and the gorgeous full moon at night. 

Fashion Cravings | Outfit Post | Featuring Anthropologie

Amy West fashion and travel blogger and host


Now that I'm nearly eight months pregnant folks, I get a lot of the typical pregnant lady questions. "How far along are you?" "When are you due?" "Having a Boy or Girl?" And let's not leave out, "Any special cravings?" With my first daughter I craved spicy and tart foods like salsa and key lime pie. Pretty fitting since munchkin is quite the fiery spirit. With this baby girl, I've been craving more creamy and sweet foods like mashed potatoes, tarimisu, and after this shoot... the delicious Dulce de Leche Milkshake from Corner Taco in 5 Points. But what about fashion cravings? Read on to find out more about what I look for when I shop for maternity wear including these must have pieces from Anthropologie



 

Best Spas on the First Coast | Amy West on The Chat

Best Spas

Craving a spa day? There are many reasons to set your sights on the First Coast as a destination to getaway to, one of which are her many fantastic spas. I recently reported to 10best on Jacksonville's Top 10 Spas. Today I'm highlighting the top 5, as seen on my recent appearance on The Chat.





Effortlessly Chic | Outfit Post | Featuring Wendy Bellissimo

Amy West wearing Wendy Bellissimo Maternity from Destination Maternity

One of the many joys of being in your last trimester in the middle of summer is tolerating the intense heat. Living in Florida, the temps can soar along with the humidity, which means our free time will be spent on, near, or by the water this season. When dressing the bump for summer it's all about light, breezy clothing that doesn't cling. I love this Wendy Bellissimo Maxi I found at Destination Maternity. It's airy and lightweight and perfect for a carefree stroll on the sand. 




Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort Mini Family Babymoon


Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort Mini Family Babymoon
Imagine a secret escape. A private getaway that feels like home, without all the demands. A place that sets you at ease, and where time seems to slow down for just a little while. Feel the ocean breeze whip it's way through your undone hair, and sip on a refreshing drink as the sun warms your face. Recently my family and I took a mini babymoon to the Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort. It may have been just one night, but the memories we made will last forever. Read on to discover what made this destination so special.


Simply Chic Nautical Stripes | Outfit Post | Featuring Jessica Simpson

Amy West fashion blogger in nautical striped maxi maternity dressStripes are trending big this season and there is no question they are a classic. Pair that with all things nautical and you have a hit. I've been pretty obsessed with both this season so when I spotted this little number at Destination Maternity I fell in love. It sold out quickly and is sadly no longer available, however I've included some similar looks for your shopping inspiration. I love this look so much I'll be wearing it to my baby shower. I also have plans to potentially have it altered post maternity as I don't want to give it up after the baby bump disappears! 


Publix Apron's Cooking School Date Night Out

Heriloom tomato salad at Publix Apron's Cooking SchoolLooking for a creative date night out? Love to cook and ready to advance your skills? Have a "Master Chef Junior" in the making and looking for a place to unleash their talent? At Publix Apron's Cooking School you'll find exactly what you're looking for and make some great memories while you're at it. Recently, my handsome other half and I headed over to the school for a class with celebrity Chef Harold Dieterle, winner of the first season of Bravo's Top Chef. As foodies we are always looking to learn more secrets from the masters and gain inspiration for our home cooked dishes, not to mention taste new exciting creations. Read on to discover what we experienced. 


A Walk on the Sunny Side | Outfit Post | Featuring Anthropologie

Amy West maternity fashion
Comfort, practicality, and a whole lot of cuteness. Believe it or not, you can have it all when putting your ensemble together, although I will admit usually one of the three will get center stage. This casual look is a prime example of how you can accomplish all three when dressing the ever growing curves of motherhood. The great surprise of this look though, is that it wasn't designed as maternity wear, which gives it great longevity in your closet. Read on for more details. 


5 Kid Friendly Attractions for Your Summer Bucket List | Amy on The Chat

Pirate Adventure in St. Augustine

Summer is here along with the age old question of "What the heck are we gonna do with the kids?". If you are lost and looking for some inspiration I've got you covered. When it comes to our summer bucket list with the kiddo, I look for unique adventures that pack in some action, education, and of course a whole lot of fun! Read on for my top picks for this summer!



Montana Outfit #3 | Outfit Post |Tall, Dark, and Pregnant

Amy West fashion and travel blogger

The third and final look from my Montana media trip with Firehouse Subs was a little more bohemian inspired. I found dark colors were the ideal choice for the Wild West since the winds were whipping and the dark colors hid the trail dust well. Layers also came in handy as the afternoons were warm, but as twilight set the evening got quite chilly. Read on for more details on what I wore... 





5 " Firsts" in Montana


Horse in Montana This spring I dusted off my boots, donned my most western hat, and slid into some denim for a trip out West. My journey this time was the wilds of Montana. I was honored to be invited, along with 9 other journalists, by Firehouse Subs to take part in a multi day press trip full of adventure, good times, and the opportunity to get to know the company from the inside out. This was my first time to Montana, and I have to say, it was the trip of a lifetime. Here were a few "firsts" I experienced along the way....



Best Breakfast Highlights | Amy West Travel on The Chat




Waking up in Jax and looking for the best breakfast in town? I recently reported on my home town for USA Today's 10Best on which breakfast joints in town made the cut for top 10. My recent visit to The Chat daily talk show revealed which 5 stood out as most memorable.




Gypsy Kitchen | Atlanta Foodie Find

Paella at Gypsy Kitchen


A few weeks ago I headed on a little girls trip to Atlanta with my mom. I was there for a weekend workshop with famed LA hosting coach Marki Costello which was intense and amazing. My mom came along as my road warrior buddy for the ride and to hang out with during my off time. Atlanta has evolved into quite the foodie destination as of late. I observe many of my Jacksonville food industry friends post on social media about their research trips to "Hotlanta" all the time. I was pleased to have the opportunity to do a little food exploration for myself. My journey led me to Gypsy Kitchen in Buckhead where the flavors we encountered were out of control!

What I Wore in Montana #2 | Outfit Post | Red, White, and Blue

Amy West maternity picture 22 weeks pregnantLook #2 from my maternity ensemble for Montana was inspired by simplicity. I'm a fan of white (even though it's not the safest color to wear around kids), and my husband loves it on me so I'm always looking to pick up a new classic white piece. This LWD (little white dress) was a perfect pair with my well worn in denim jacket. Throw in my worn out  perfectly distressed red cowgirl boots and top it off with some clean accessories and you have an effortless combination that's perfect for a stroll through the country, or hopping terminals in the airport. Which is exactly what I did. 

5 Unique Wedding Venues in Jax That May Surprise You | Amy on The Chat





Looking for a unique wedding destination in Northeast Florida that's full of "Wow Factor"? These are my top picks for wedding venues that are some of the areas best hidden gems. It's easy to get into a rut when planning a wedding, there is so much to think of. Let these locations inspire you to make your special day even more personal and memorable.












Montana Outfit Post #1 | What I'm Wearing | Denim and Turquoise


Amy West wearing maternity fashion

I'm thrilled to visit Montana for the first time ever on a press trip for Firehouse Subs. There is nothing like wide open spaces to set your heart free. I'm from Kentucky and my dad is a farmer so getting in touch with the land and reconnecting to nature really brings me home. Now that I'm 23 weeks preggo I had to find some outfits that would be fashionable, comfortable, and functional on my travels. Here's where my inspiration led me. 












Pier 2620 Hotel San Francisco | A Millennial Minded Boutique Hotel

Amy West in front of the Golden Gate Bridge
San Francisco is a diverse city with quite the story to tell. With a significant role in history and an eye towards the future, this ever evolving "City by the Bay" features plenty of reasons to visit. The question is... where to start? Our recent visit lead us to Pier 2620 Hotel. A chic, millennial minded hotel for the modern traveler, conveniently located in the center of everywhere we wanted to be. Read on for more about our stay in San Francisco.