iFLEW at iFLY San Antonio!

Louis and I have been together for 11 years. Yes, over a decade! We’ve done pretty much every date night in the book, so we’re always looking for fun, different activities to try. Enter, iFLY. They reached out to me, and asked if we’d like to come in for some complimentary flights, and we JUMPED at the chance…get it? ūüėČ

In case you’re unfamiliar with iFLY, they are an indoor skydiving facility. Yes, you read that right. They provide flyers with the thrill of skydiving, without the risk of jumping out of a plane! Sound too good to be true? It’s not.

In fact, anyone from ages 3 to 103 can skydive, according to iFLY! (Sorry, if you live to 104, you’re out. ūüėČ I kid, I kid. ) It’s as easy as filling out a waiver, checking to insure you fit within the other parameters, selecting your flight package, and you’re in! They’ll even let you wear bright red lipstick, so you can unintentionally match your flight suit! I know, it just keeps getting better.

The iFLY team greeted us immediately upon arrival, got us quickly checked in, and minutes later, we were getting our flight training from our amazing trainer, Dave. The training was quick, but thorough, easy to comprehend and remember, and entertaining (thanks to our great trainer!). Next, we got to suit up! Your flight equipment includes a jump suit, ear plugs, goggles, and a helmet. (Make sure you wear lace-up shoes, as well! No flats, flip flops, or bare feet in the tunnel, please!)

Then, BAM, we were flying!! I mean, we had to go into the tunnel, wait our turn, yadda, yadda, yadda, but our flights came up even quicker than I was expecting! Louis went first and looked like a pro! At 6’4″, I was worried the tunnel would be too small for him, but he fit perfectly and did such a great job!

I’m definitely a daredevil, but something about the tunnel had me scared at first. Thankfully, about 5 children flew right before me, so they put my fear in its place. Thinking, “If they can do it, surely I can!” I stepped/fell/leapt into the tunnel, and I was flying!

Okay, full disclosure, our instructor was helping/holding me every second of the way, but still! I did it! And it was so fun! The time FLEW by, and before we knew it, our flights were over, and I was staggering around jelly-legged from the adrenaline rush.

We checked out the kiosks for our flight pictures and videos, got our super official flight certificates, and grinned from ear-to-ear! I love that they take high quality photos and video of your flight, so you don’t have to worry about trying to snap a blurry, grainy phone shot!

Tips from a self-proclaimed pro:

  • If you have long hair, BRAID IT, SLICK IT BACK, SHAVE YOUR HEAD (kidding.). I braided mine, but the few tendrils of hair that slipped out got twisted up like dreadlocks in the tunnel! Thankfully, they were easily brushed out, with¬†minimal-to-no hair loss ;), but I can’t imagine if I had left it down!
  • Wear lace-up shoes! Not flats, flip flops, or slip ons…lace-up shoes only! I wore my trusty Mickey & Minnie Mouse sneakers, and they worked great. Thankfully, there are tennis shoes on site if needed, but I’m sure you’ll fly more comfortably in your own shoes!
  • Don’t be scared! Try and relax in the tunnel. If you hate the feeling you get in your stomach when you go down a rollercoaster drop, don’t worry! You won’t experience that sensation at all in the tunnel.
  • Trust your trainer. They will be within an arm’s length from you (or in my case, constantly holding your flight suit) the entire time you’re flying, and they do everything they can to make your flight experience safe, fun, and amazing!

iFLY San Antonio was such a cool, unique, fun, original, thrilling experience! If you’re looking for a new¬†date night, an awesome birthday party, a great team-building event, or just want to try an exciting experience yourself, definitely check out iFLY…you won’t be disappointed!

 

 I received complimentary flight packages from iFLY San Antonio in exchange for this review, but, as always, all opinions are my own!

This post contains affiliate links, which means if you click on these links or make a purchase using these links, I may receive a small percentage of the profit at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting Hoots of a Night Al!

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San Antonio Botanical Garden

A couple of weeks ago, we ventured over to the San Antonio Botanical Garden. Let me say, I am so sad we have been missing out on this place since we moved here over four years ago. A low ticket cost of $10 provided us with a chance to explore the amazing gardens on a lovely Sunday. Read on to see some of the beauty we encountered.

We first explored the Fountain Plaza and Japanese Garden. Both were peaceful, scenic spaces perfect for journaling, sketching, or simply enjoying the scenery. The fountains and trickling water created such a relaxing vibe.

Next, we journeyed past the Overlook to spend some time in the various pavilions. Every path we took had no shortage of interesting plants and wildlife to observe.

The first room we explored was the Northrup Tropical Room. It was packed wall-to-ceiling with lush vegetation and colorful plants. It truly provided the sensation of walking through a rainforest.

As you can see, this room was literally overflowing with things to admire.

As native Houstonians, the humidity in the Tropical Room felt familiar, and the dry heat of Kleberg Desert Pavilion felt more like San Antonio. This pavilion held cacti, succulents, and even a tiny, growing pineapple pictured below.


It felt nice to escape the warm Desert Pavilion, and head into the breezy Palm & Cycad Pavilion. This amazing structure housed so many different palms and truly felt like a tropical destination. 

Our final stop in the pavilion area was the Fern Grotto, and we may have saved the best for last! The lush green plants, impressive waterfall, and winding stone path provided a calm oasis that we spent a long time exploring.

We finally stepped outside to admire the Orangerie, where we resisted the urge to harvest some freshly grown limes. It was educational to see how many of the different fruits we enjoy are grown.

We used this shaded path to travel up past the Overlook again to peruse the Cactus and Succulent Garden. This expansive area was a landscape full of so many versions of cacti…some were even purple!

Near the end of the Cactus and Succulent Garden we happened upon the South Texas trail. Here we found this adorable adobe house, more cacti, and an excellent area for bird watching. I have never seen so many cardinals in one spot!

The East Texas Pineywoods section of the gardens welcomed us with the amazing sculpture below. It was made in San Antonio specifically for the Botanical Garden, and it looked stunning reflecting all of the greenery and nature surrounding it. This section of the garden had a lake full of ducks, several tall trees, and a quaint log cabin with light streaming in.

The final section of the garden we visited was the Hill Country. It was wonderful to see signs of spring starting to pop up here and there. I cannot wait to visit again in the springtime when I’m sure this section will be brimming with wildflowers! Our walk through the Schumacher House confirmed that Louis would have been considered a giant in the past. ūüôā

We journeyed back towards the front of the garden, pausing to enjoy the tranquil Sacred Garden.

As you can see, the San Antonio Botanical Garden was already full of blooming tulips, colorful succulents, and more plants. I can only imagine how beautiful it will be in a few weeks when spring is in full swing!

If you’re looking for a fun, relaxing way to spend a day, I can’t recommend the San Antonio Botanical Garden enough! Have you ever visited? Did we miss any of your favorite parts?

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Athleta – San Antonio, The Shops at La Cantera

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Hey San Antonio, I have great news for you,

A brand new Athleta¬†is open, it’s true!

It’s the first location in our great city,

And if you haven’t been yet, that’s a huge pity.

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It’s at La Cantera on the North side of town,

And they seriously have the cutest clothes around.

The store floor is wood, the brick walls are white,

The vibe is friendly and casual, not at all uptight.

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You’ll be greeted by a salesperson who can help you for sure,

If you’re in a workout rut, this place is the cure.

Their athletic-wear varies from bright to basic black,

And they have perfect styles from yoga to running around the track.

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Whatever your needs, you’ll find the perfect clothes,

Need some nice outfits for leisure? They also have those.

Each piece is crafted with amazing detail and care,

And you can tell that in an instant by how comfortably they wear.

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The Chaturanga tights were gifted to me nicely,

And it was amazing how they fit my body so precisely.

They are soft and stretchy and feel like a second skin,

As soon as I take them off, I want to put them on again!

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The store is full of options for relaxing or exploring,

Whether you’re running a marathon or in bed snoring.

Grab a sweater or a sweatshirt, a dress or a tank,

And smile knowing that Athleta’s prices won’t break the bank.

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The amazingness doesn’t stop at their clothing line,

Their community events are where they totally shine!

So check out their website or visit the store,

To see when they do free classes like yoga and more!

 

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Once you experience their culture you’ll have to agree,

They really live their motto, the “Power of She.”

Want to be cute AND comfy? Take it from me,

Athleta is the place your dream outfits will be!

 

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I received complimentary products for consideration, but, as always, all opinions are my own.

 

 

 

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Purpose Box

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“The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.” -Albert Schweitzer

This Schweitzer quote personifies the mission behind Purpose Box. Creator Jolie Gray, acted on¬†her own desire to “do something,” and this amazing initiative is the result.¬†Purpose Box is a bi-monthly mail subscription box filled with purchase with purpose items.

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Each item is hand-selected with¬†the constant mindset of helping others. Every product in the box has been extensively researched and has its own mission to help others in need. Also, each Purpose Box, has its own purpose. Shocking, right? ūüėČ Each individual box supports a different cause. So far they have supported adoptions, birth mother retreats, and NICU nesting suites, among others.
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Recently, I attended a wonderful event to celebrate Purpose Box’s 2nd Anniversary, and I got to see some of the amazing items they distribute firsthand. The items pictured above are what we all received in our swag boxes, and let me say, they were such a treat!

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The items ranged from beautiful stationary to adorable accessories to tasty treats and more! I couldn’t believe the wide array of products available that support so many different causes. It made me realize how easy it can be to shop with purpose every day.

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Being the lucky duck that I am, I also won a previous Purpose Box shipment! I was so delighted, because it was filled with even more amazing things! The items pictured below were received by purchasers of the most recent Purpose Box. Each Purpose Box is $40, and from my calculations, the value of what you receive is well above $40.

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The selected pieces are diverse, well-made, and actually useful items. Plus, I love that it has things like this Project 7 Rainbow Ice gum, which I can buy at my local HEB. Without Purpose Box, I never would have thought to pick it up because I didn’t realize it sponsors Anti-bullying Programs for kids (plus it tastes delicious!). Part of the idea behind Purpose Box is to encourage people to shop more mindfully and purchase for-purpose items whenever they can.

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Possibly the most important part of each Purpose Box is a card letting the buyer know what cause is being supported that month, as well as what each item supports. This particular box said it “helped provide sustainable employment and quality of life for those in developing countries, give back to seven areas of need both in the US and abroad, fight ovarian cancer, provide business education for women, and provide gifts of gratitude for those enduring medical treatments, returning vets, and/or teachers.” Whew! Yes! ALL of that is being supported with just ONE box! Pretty amazing, right?

Also, ALL of the proceeds from that month’s Purpose Box went to OneHope27, which helps aid in the Foster care crisis. Yes, ALL of the proceeds.

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It could not be more clear to me that Jolie’s mission with Purpose Box is so pure. Her idea has already supported so many remarkable organizations, and I can’t wait to see what inspiring groups she will partner with in the future. Plus, if the prospect of helping that many people doesn’t get you excited (are you crazy??), she’s a fellow Aggie, so that should be reason enough. ūüėČ

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Thank you Jolie, for starting such a remarkable business and sharing your passion with everyone! If any of my readers are interested in purchasing their own Purpose Box or any of the items I pictured above, I will include all of the links below! Purpose Box is bi-monthly, and they sell out very quickly, so make sure to sign up to find out when the next shipment is ready for purchase! Besides, what could be better than receiving a box of things you’ll love in the mail?? Oh wait, I know. Knowing that each and every item included helped someone in need. So amazing.

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Purpose Box: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Hands Producing Hope: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Tribute: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Buy the Change: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Banded: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Writefully His: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Kurandza: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Auggie Apparel: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Two Sparrows Roasting Co: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Marie Mae: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

107 Market Street: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

Project 7: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

 

 

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Bless Your Heart Gift Shop & Boutique

0 Bless Your Heart Bracken Village

Sitting nestled among¬†countless arching oak tress off a beautiful country road is what may be the cutest boutique in San Antonio, Bless Your Heart. It’s part of Bracken Village along with several other shops, restaurants, and antique stores. The setting couldn’t be more quaint, and Bless Your Heart is the star of the village in the big, red barn.
1 Bless Your Heart Building

Once you grab a parking spot, walk up the paved path past the other buildings and cute windmills to the front of the structure.
1.5 Bless Your Heart Windmill

Before even walking inside you can see how adorably decorated and themed everything is! Pink, antique, and shabby chic!

2 Bless Your Heart Sign

The front porch holds huge, metal marquee letters hanging down to welcome you in. Both sides are are spilling over with antiques and furniture both as decor and for purchase. 3 Bless Your Heart Entrance

I couldn’t believe how excited I was about shopping¬†before I even stepped inside! The exterior was so cute on its own, I knew the inside would hold just as many precious items.¬†4 Bless Your Heart Door

Let me tell you. The inside did NOT disappoint. There are 4 rooms and a lobby area downstairs as well as a section upstairs, and each one is OVERFLOWING with adorable things to purchase. The kind, helpful employees greeted me, and I began my shopping!5 Bless Your Heart Jewelry Gifts

I don’t think it’s too bold of a statement to suggest that you could get shopping done for ALL of the women in your life completed here. This first room I stepped into had such a fun, bright summery feel. It was filled with colorful, jewelry, adorable baby gifts, sassy tees (that said things like “I know guacamole is extra”), and embellished denim shorts perfect for the¬†Texas heat.
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8 Bless Your Heart Gifts

The next room over had a sort of southwestern vibe. It had these amazing, painted cement candle holders filled with fragrant candles, customizable cowboy boots for tons of colleges (I admired the A&M boots for quite awhile!), painted picture frames, and tons of clothes with cacti, which made me extremely happy.  This room also housed an entire section of gifts perfect for teachers for the end of the year!

7 Bless Your Heart Clothes

One room focused strictly on clothes, which they have no shortage of! The styles I saw were unique, bohemian, southwestern, casual, dressy, cool…such a huge range! There was definitely something for everyone. I couldn’t resist buying the¬†cobalt blue peasant top centered above.
9 Bless Your Heart Pillows

If you want to decorate your home as well, they had tons of fun, amazing pillows! That pillow with the red double decker bus came home with me! ūüôā I found these pillows in the fourth room among more boots, sandals, cute tees, and the dressing rooms.10 Bless Your Heart Texas Shirt

I obviously had to step into the dressing room to try on some items myself! I didn’t purchase this Texas Love shirt, but it was so soft and cute, I’m already planning to return and buy it! There were so many cute styles, and I had so much fun trying them all on. They had several tunics and dresses perfect for layering and a huge range of color options.11 Bless Your Heart Clothes Toms

I love those TOMS booties pictured above so much, I may need to return and buy them¬†this fall! Yes, I haven’t mentioned it yet, but the lobby area has an entire wall of TOMS! Everything from their classic slip ons to their sandals, wedgies, and booties! The lobby also has a huge selection of Kendra Scott jewelry, several colors and patterns of Swell water bottles, and a section of seasonal¬†apparel and gifts. When I visited, they had a huge display for 4th of July. ¬†12 Bless Your Heart Gift Shop

I love everything I purchased at Bless Your Heart, and I can’t wait to go back soon and get more! If you’re in San Antonio, or just want an adorable place to shop for unique items¬†with your mom, sisters, and girlfriends, Bless Your Heart is the perfect spot! I’m so happy my fellow San Antonio blogger, Christina of The Social Butterfly Gal, told me about it! Thanks again, Christina!

Have you ever visited Bless Your Heart? Add it to your weekend plans if you haven’t!

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Disclaimer: I used a gift card won via The Social Butterfly Gal for a portion of my purchases, but, as always, all opinions are strictly my own. I just loved the boutique so much, I wanted to share it with all of you!

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