Finding Fall | The National Arboretum, Union Market, and Carrot Cake Cookies

mason dixie biscuit co, national arboretum
Remember last week when I said I was over fall and ready for all things Christmas? I think God was telling me to slooow down, because we had the most perfect fall weather this past two weekends ago in DC. I've been wanting to go to the National Arboretum for a while, but it has always seemed kind of out of the way for some reason, so we've never made going a priority. With the stellar weather forecast, and knowing that miserably cold days are ahead, I wanted to take advantage of doing something outdoors, so it was the perfect excuse to head over to the Arboretum.



We made a quick pitstop at Union Market and had biscuit sandwiches from Mason Dixie Biscuit Co. Admittedly, we haven't been the biggest fans of Union Market in the past and tend to get more of a trying too hard vibe, but I think if you're in the area or live nearby I can see why it would be awesome and our sandwiches were delicious!
national arboretum
The Arboretum was incredible, and it was crazy that something could exist without being a must-see on everyone's to-do list! There are over 400 acres, so we didn't see a lot of it, but the highlights were definitely the Bonsai museum, the National Capitol Columns, and just seeing all of the gorgeous fall colors.
national arboretum dc
national arboretum; bonsais
It's really nice because you can park at the entrance and walk wherever you'd like to go (there are 9 miles of roadway), or you can drive through to different areas and park to check out the different exhibits.

I wrapped up the day making amazingly delicious carrot cake cookie sandwiches. I'm not sure if carrot cake is traditionally more of a spring thing, but I think the nutmeg, ginger, and cinnamon, make them fall appropriate. I had pinned quite a few similar recipes, but went with this one because my favorite chili recipe is also from this blog, so it's one that I trust. Plus, it didn't call for any raisins-- something I don't care for in carrot cake anything.
carrot cake cookies
I was excited with how well they turned out-- the cookie part isn't sweet at all, but adding the cream cheese frosting gives it the perfect balance. I omitted the nuts from the recipe, but think they would have been really good and if I make them again in the future I think I'll definitely add them in. They were relatively easy to make, even having to use a handmixer after my arm was already so tired from having to shred the carrots.

The portions are kind of huge, but they're perfect to cut into smaller pieces, and I found I actually preferred them chilled.

And now I'll resume enjoying all things Christmas ;) Happy Monday!

24 comments

  1. If we could have fall weather and it be christmas i'd be 100% okay with that!! those cookie sandwiches came out amazing - way to go girl!! The arboretum looks so cool! Glad you were able to finally check it out! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

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  2. We are finally starting to have fall-ish weather. And by that I mean that the mornings are fall but then it heats up to nearly summer by the afternoon. Sigh. Sounds like you had a fun weekend though!!! The Arboretum looks like a lot of fun. And those carrot cake cookies look so good!!! Trader Joes sells some in their bakery section that I am most certainly guilty of picking up and eating them all by myself on more than one occasion! Hope you have a great week!

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  3. drooling over those carrot cake sandwiches. YUM. and i've always wanted to go to the national arboretum and now i def need to add it to my list when i'm back home. happy monday!

    xoxo cheshire kat

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  4. I'm in the same boat because we really didn't have a fall and suddenly it's been perfect! But I did put up my tree yesterday. :) Those cookies look amazing! I need to try to bake them...

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  5. What a fun weekend! And the weather looked absolutely amazing! It's still SO hot here which sucks. Those cookies look delish!! <3, Pamela Sequins & Sea Breezes

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  6. The Arboretum sounds super neat!!! And those carrot cake cookies look amazing.

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  7. The perfect fall weekend! The Arboretum looks so pretty - what a fun little trip!

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  8. Those carrot cake cookies look delicious! I almost always like cake better chilled, My husband thinks I'm crazy but now I can tell him I'm not the only one. Good call sans raisins. They just do not belong in baked goods!

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  9. I need to check that out because my hubs LOVESSSSSSSSS carrot cake & hates raisins in it too.

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  10. Definitely the perfect fall weekend! We're finally getting fall weather here, and it's inspiring me to do fun baking and get outside more. Those cookies look DELISH!
    Green Fashionista

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  11. Those cookies sound amazing. I loooove carrot cake (but only without raisins!).

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  12. The National Arboretum looks so gorgeous, and I'm so glad that you got tos ee some fall colors! I'm so glad that it's finally started to feel like fall too, and I might be ready for all things Christmas to commence as well!

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  13. Ahh we totally missed each other - I was at Union Market this weekend too!
    Glad you enjoyed the weekend in DC! :]

    xo Deborah
    Coffee, Prose, and Pretty Clothes

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  14. Carrot cake definitely feels like a fall flavor to me, but I don't know who I'm kidding because I will eat it all year round. The arboretum looks lovely! Love the blog facelift, btw :)

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  15. The National Arboretum looks so amazing. Oh those cookie sandwiches look so good. Great job on them. I know this is crazy but I don't think I have ever had carrot cake before. Is that odd? I don't recall ever having it.

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  16. Yum! Those cookies look and sound delicious! Definitely going to try making them one day...

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  17. Those turned out so well! I can practically taste them from here. I need to check out the Arbortoreum the next time I'm there.

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  18. Oh those sandwiches do look so good! So glad you had a good time at the Arboretum. Looks like a nice place to visit.

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  19. Like Little Carrot Whoopie Pies!! Girl, these look scrumptious!! Fun weekend too!

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  20. The weather has been so beautiful! But I know that winter is coming and it's only a matter of time before it's gonna be nasty outside! It's awesome that you got to explore a new area. There are lots of things to explore around here but sometimes I feel so lazy on weekends and I don't wanna go anywhere lol. The carrot cookie sandwiches look incredible! I like making carrot cake but I haven't done it in a long time. Now I'm craving it :)

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  21. mmmm carrot cake anything.. raisins? ew!! that's so weird! lol. hey do things look new around here or am i just behind?

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  22. YOU MADE THOSE COOKIE SANDWICHES!!!!!? I saw them on instagram and I thought they were store bought lol! You're good! I'm in the fricking MOOOOOD to bake and that didn't help lol. And cream cheese frosting...ah. Why you do this to me.

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  23. Those cookies look wonderful! I eat too much so that portion looks just right for me! ;-)

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