I can’t believe our season of living here in Tysons is coming to an end this weekend! It feels like just a few months ago I was joining Justin here in our fifth floor apartment that overlooks Tysons Galleria on one side and Virginia mountains on the other. We have LOVED living here in Tysons Corner. Loved loved loved. I can’t say how much of a fun adventure it’s been 1) to just live with Justin for the first time and experience every day life with him, just the two of us! and 2) live in such an exciting place with SO MANY amazing places to eat, fun things to do, and incredible people to meet. It feels like everyone here is so driven, smart, and accomplished… and that’s probably pretty true. Walk into any happy hour within a mile of our place and you’ll meet dozens of twenty-somethings making probably well over $100k at their fancy high-tech jobs. It’s been so cool to meet people who are both career-driven but also value play as much as they do hard work. Beyond just the people though, Tysons has been a dream for us because we love good food and great happy hours and there’s no better place to find that than this area. Of that, I’m convinced… and we have countless amazing memories because of it!!
We had several people make comments about the traffic when we moved here and I have to say it hasn’t been nearly as bad as I thought it would be. When you live within a couple of miles of everything you need, including your place of work, traffic just isn’t as big of a deal. It may take me 10 minutes to get to the Wal-mart that’s less than 2 miles away but that’s about as far as I ever had to venture here anyway…! My favorite coffee shop was a 10 minute drive, Justin’s work was a 10 minute drive, and Target was 15 minutes away so sadly I haven’t been going to Target for the past year but that was probably a good thing anyway… haha!
This post comes just two days before we move back down to our hometown of Woodbridge. I honestly didn’t realize just how different Woodbridge is from Tysons until living up here, but what I’m really going to miss is how nice and new everything looks and feels. Even the buildings look fancy. The glass windows on the skyscrapers reflect the sky as it lights up with the setting sun and it’s just a breathtaking sight. This has been a different scene for the both of us… I’ve loved hopping on my bike and having the mall, the metro, and the grocery store just a few blocks away. It was definitely a very urban experience for us living here and SO much fun. In every way, I couldn’t have dreamt of a better first year of marriage. It’s truly been the best, most exciting, and most rewarding adventure of my life so far.
So in honor of our incredible and unexpected season as newlyweds here in Tysons Corner, the place we used to drive up to in high school when we wanted to go on a “fancy” date (seriously who would have thought we could afford to live here – not me!), here are a few highlights from our time here… and our top 5 favorite things about living in Vienna/Tysons Corner. Enjoy, and highly consider moving here. ;)
1. This is, hands down, my favorite place in Vienna. Cafe Amouri serves some INCREDIBLY delicious coffee. It has a soulful vibe with records on the walls and always good coffee shop music playing overhead. My favorite drink is the Cafe Amouri… or the pumpkin pie latte during the Fall. It’s good enough to make me want to drive up after we move just to work at the bar from time to time with an iced coffee in hand. Oh, and the breakfast sandwiches are to die for. YUM. 10/10.
2. One place I’ve wanted to go for YEARS but just lived too far away from was McLean Bible Church. It’s a “megachurch” but is nothing like the megachurch you might think of when you hear that word. The community here has been so good and I love that the Bible comes first in every sermon and teaching. It truly is a bible church with in-depth Scripture study and a foundation in God’s Word. There is an emphasis on bringing God’s love to our local community and the greater Washington DC area and it’s inspiring. There’s always some way to volunteer to serve those who need to be served most. Last weekend I attended a women’s conference that was lemon-themed but also made me cry the entire way through. I’m talking full on sobbing during worship and streams of tears during the message. I’ve loved meeting the Lord here, feeling the Holy Spirit move and meeting beautiful friends through Citywide, the young adult community. If you’re nearby, check out Thursday night bible study (free dinner every week!) or the Sunday night worship & sermon service. I’m going to miss this the most. Hopefully we can make ourselves drive the 45 minutes every now and again, but if not, I’m glad to know I’ve made friends that will survive the distance.
3. Tysons Corner mall (a massive, luxurious, amazing place to shop and get lost in and forget about life for a few hours) has been our go-to date spot whenever we want to do something, just don’t know WHAT to do. It’s so pretty and the stores are just decorated so well and there’s always a good deal to be found or a bookstore to browse or yummy place to eat. One of our very first dates together was to this mall and it still entertains us 7 years later!! We loved going to the ice skating rink this winter and enjoying bottomless guac at La Sandia during the summer months. I’m still hoping Justin takes me to Brio one of these days because the aroma alone that wafts over to my car the second I park in the garage is enough to make my mouth water. Yummmmm. Can’t wait for our next date here, whenever that may be!
4. Okay. Where do I begin with this one. I need to place EXTRA emphasis on this little number right here because it has brought so much joy to our lives it’s hard to do it justice with words but here are just two to get us started: Tequila. Grande. First of all, when tequila is in its title, you know it’s gonna be good. Secondly. It’s Mexican food. With tequila. You really can’t go wrong there but sadly we can probably all name places that have messed up this nearly-impossible-to-mess-up combo. Not Tequila Grande. Oh no. Farrrrrr from it. The margaritas are the nectar of the gods. I can drink one and be set for the evening and that’s great because it means my $5 is going far. Yes. $5. And that becomes $3 on LADIES NIGHT every Thursday when the house margaritas are practically free. (In that case, I’ll take two.) And the fooooooood. Oh the chips and salsa. I never knew how particular I was about a starter round of fried tortillas and tomato-based dip until I had their light and crispy version of the delicacy known as chips and salsa. UGH THEY’RE SO GOOD. I have come and just eaten the chips alone and I’m not ashamed to admit that. If you can make it past the margaritas and bottomless chips and salsa you’re in for a treat because the entrees are even better. We personally adore (yes, adore) the taco salad with sweet & sour dressing, the green chile and cheese enchiladas, and the grande burrito. You can never go wrong with the burrito. You just have to make it here if you are ever within a 100 mile radius of Vienna, Virginia. Please. Just trust me on this one. We force everyone who visits us to eat here, sometimes against their will if necessary. Just believe us. Your life will never be the same. Disclaimer: I can only guarantee this statement if you start your meal with a house margarita on the rocks. Otherwise I will not want to hear about your experience. Enjoy:)
5. One of the best parts of living a little farther north has been our proximity to the mountains. Views like the one below are just a short drive away and some of my best memories included those drives in the mountains looking at all the changing leaves under the wide blue sky. I’m going to make an effort to drive out this way more often, even after we move, because there’s something about driving around with your windows down and worship music playing with the mountains on either side. It’s beautiful… and so peaceful. It brings me back down to earth every time something goes a little wrong or life starts to get overwhelming. We are surrounded by so much beauty if we just have eyes that want to see it. I’m going to miss seeing our little mountain off in the distance every morning and evening but hopefully this isn’t the last time we’ll be living with a mountain view! After such an amazing newlywed season here, I’m so excited for the future. I know God has something even better planned for the two of us, no matter what that looks like in earthly details. We’re so thankful for this sweet time and we praise God for every second of it.