Dec 28, 2010

How to Acheive World Peace

I have a theory on how to finally achieve world peace. Don't steal my idea. I deserve full credit for this! I'll be looking up my intellectual property rights as soon as I finish typing this up.

Okay, so world peace will be achieved if everyone had a taco and cocktail. Think about it. Everyone would be so happy that they wouldn't care about differences in religion, race, or whatever else stirs people up.

Let's dissect this idea. First: tacos. Mmm... you really can't go wrong with a taco. Any kind. Whether is the more authentic version, a fancy fish taco, or a 79 cent taco from Taco Bell, there is a taco for every taste and every mood. I firmly believe that we haven't fully tapped the full capabilities of the taco just yet. Think of all the things we haven't tried yet! After we've all had a taco we can begin work on creating delicious new tacos.

Cocktails. I realize this could be controversial as some people do not drink and for those people, I suppose a mocktail will have to do. I remember once going out to eat with some friends in junior high and we ordered virgin daiquiris. The thrill of a fruity drink with an umbrella was exhilarating. It is still is. They come in all kinds of pretty colors, tastes, fun glasses. How can a cocktail not bring a smile to your face and an ease in your pace?!

You can thank me for this radical world changing idea by bringing me a delicious taco and a fruity cocktail.

And you're welcome.

Dec 3, 2010

Tis the Season

Tonight begins our busy holiday and birthday season. I've spent a while this afternoon decorating the fireplaces in our house. When I finally looked at my clock and realized I needed to leave asap, I started scrambling. I quickly finished my project, cleaned up, realized I had forgotten to wrap a present, wrapped the present, changed clothes, and rushed out the door. Once off the street I realized I was off an hour.

Let's try to enjoy this season for what it is: a time to remember why we are here, who loves us, and to enjoy one another. Our purpose in life is not to get things done.

Merry Christmas!

Nov 8, 2010

My House

I had a nightmare last night. It involved us selling our wonderful 1920's Midtown bungalow and buying a new brick house in a suburban new development in Florida. There were so many things wrong with this. Let's list them:

1) I love my house and never ever want to leave it. (Unless it means we're moving some where cool like Europe or Boston.)
2)New house
3) Suburbs
4) Florida... I love the beach, but I'm not sure if its for me. I could be wrong on this point though.

I don't mean to step on anyone's toes or insult anyone or their house. But new housing (unless I get to work with the architect and help draw up the plans and design) is not for me. I hate neighborhoods where all the houses are nearly the same.

Here is where I should pause and admit that yes, most of the other houses on my block are also bungalows, and yes, they all have a similar (but not the same!) floor plan. BUT, over 90 years each house has taken on a life and personality of its own. No house in our neighborhood is the same. And I love that. I'm willing to be that my 90 year old house has more charm and character than all of the new homes in one development. Trims, old knobs, scary basements, exposed brick, small fireplaces, all of these and more make our house a cool place to live.

Suburbs are great. I grew up in one. I understand why people like them, but its not for me. I love living in the city, walking to my favorite places, and being close to my neighbors. If I want to go anywhere outside of Midtown, it only takes me five minutes... unless its one of the outer-lying suburbs... which I hardly ever go to.

I love my house. From the moment I first walked into it at an open house, I knew it had to be mine. The high ceilings and big rooms had me at hello.

All of the above being said: we're experiencing some major plumbing problems. Like, we can't use any water until the plumbers get here tomorrow. No showers, no flushing toilets, can't finish the load of laundry, no washing dishes... Hmmm... it actually sounds like a vacation.

Anyways, despite our current situation, I still wouldn't want to live anywhere else.

But ask me again when I receive our plumbing bill.

Sep 30, 2010

How about them Knobs...

One of the things on my household updates to-do list has been to add hardware to the kitchen cabinets. When we bought the house only the four upper cabinets had knobs. Some of the drawers and cabinets were difficult to open, but I survived.

Something came over me the past month or two and I got around to purchasing knobs. We put them on all the drawer and cabinets.

Its so easy to open things now! I can't believe we went so long without them. Its really sad.

Sep 12, 2010

The Guest Bedroom, redo

We spent much of last weekend painting. Which wasn't too bad as our paint spot was on the front porch and the weather last weekend was phenomenal.

Our guestbedroom was looking a little sad. Here's a before:

Lets recap: random broken chair on far left, mismatched linens (especially the pillows), broken side table. Also this room has become a collect-all for items that don't really have a home and/or need to go up in the attic.

Solution: new bedding and two new tables.

I purchased two side tables from antique stores and we proceeded to paint them an off white.

And... Here's the after:

Ignore the glass on the bed, that is being put away. Also, for the sake of testing things out, making final decisions I did not put the down comforter in the duvet yet. I wanted to see how it would look without going through that hassle yet. Plus, I want to keep Bosco off the new things as long as possible.

This is my favorite table. Its the perfect height and is much more interesting than the previous table. Plus it adds a place to put a glass on that side of the bed. We are planning to put the dog crate away before guests come to stay. Isn't the new lamp perfect in here? It makes the room so much more home-y.

Here's the other table. I like that it offers some hidden storage. It relives the closet of some of the overflow.

I still have a little more styling, putting away, and finishing touches to make. But at least you are able to get an idea of our progress. What do you think?

Aug 23, 2010

Ebay Lessons

I consider myself an internet savvy person. Yet somehow I made my very first Ebay purchase last week. It was a vintage mailbox. It was perfect! Norman Rockwell-ish for Bry and asethically pleasing for me. However, I failed to take note of the dimensions.

Turns out its a penny bank. Yes, a PENNY bank. Oopsy. Oh well, it will look really cute added to our kitchen hanging collage.

NOTE TO SELF: Please take note of dimensions and other features before any online purchase.

Aug 22, 2010


Ever feel like you have a 100 different dreams for you life? I do. A few things I've been thinking about doing lately:

- become a tambourine player and join a band
- Open my senior project business: Get Organized
- Open a classy, fun women's underwear store in the neighborhood, name it something like Skivvies
- Open a build your own burrito/taco place in the neighborhood.
- Open Bryan's idea for a restaurant. Home.
- Quit my job and stay at home.
- Move to Europe
- Move to the beach
- Own a boat
- Operate a "burger barge"
- Cook more

Those are just a few. I don't consider this a bucket list, just my changing whims. But I'd like to really do at least a few of these.

Does anyone have any money they would like to invest?

Jul 23, 2010

Restaurant Review: The Villa

Bryan and I went out the other night and decided to try the Villa, what was once Le Chardonnay. We never went to Le Chardonnay, so we can't tell you how it has changed, but can offer a fresh view on a new restaurant in our neighborhood.

We live in the Tucker Jefferson neighborhood, just two blocks away from Overton Square. It was one of the main reasons for buying our house, the ability to walk just about anywhere we need, specifically some of our favorite restaurants.

Excited to try a new restaurant in our area, within walking distance, we walked into The Villa on Friday night. Maybe its been a while since we've been to Overton Square on a Friday, but it took us a long time to find a parking spot and it looked like all the restaurants had a wait.

When you walk into the Villa there is a sign greeting you at the door to see the bartender for a table. Its the first time I've seen a sign like that. I stood at the crowded bar for several minutes before someone even acknowledged me. She didn't even give me a guesstimate on how long it would be to get a table. We found a place at the bar to tide us over until we got a table.

It actually didn't take long to move to a table, 10-15 minutes. However, it appeared that the bartenders played hostess and waiter. I didn't see one employee that seemed like a real waiter/waitress. Everyone was a bartender/runner.

While our food was good, the service was awful. Its not the employee's faults... they are understaffed by at least two. It took a full hour to get food. We had to wait five minutes after receiving food to get silverware. We were never offered bread or appetizers... even though we saw other tables getting free bread.

The atmosphere is great, although rather loud. They could use a bit more fabric in the place relieve some of the loudness of the space. But otherwise a well decorated and appropriate.

Maybe we were there during their busiest time ever, or maybe that's just how it is. But the service was awful and I probably won't be back unless we hear the service has vastly improved.

Jun 13, 2010

Recent News

Recent news in our lives:

1. I went to Minnesota for the first time ever.

This is as much as I saw of the city. But I met a ton of great people. And didn't hear one "dontchaknow", which I found very disappointing.

2. We have decided to go to Europe. First to travel and get a feel for it. If we decide we like it, we'll consider moving. We are focusing on Spain, Italy, and France. And will probably be traveling next February and/or March.

3. In lew of #2, I've decided not to buy more "stuff". We will be asking ourselves before any purchases, does this help us get to Europe?

4. Also in lew of #2 and #3, we're prefer money for any gift giving occasions in the next year.

5. I've got herbs! I need to do a whole seperate post on my little front stoop garden, but its now majorly hot outside and I can't bring myself to go out there.

6. We got Instant Netflix on Wii! The amount of time spent in front of the tv has now quadrupled. But we're mostly watching documentaries, so does that even count?

7. We took Bosco to the lake yesterday for a swim. She loved it. She also loved mud.

May 31, 2010


Meet Motley.

Motley has made a full recovery and is out and about among the rest of the members of the family. She was quarantined to the bathroom for a few days at first while she was still healing.

She and Tigger get along well for the most part.

But Bosco is very eager to have a new playmate. She (Bosco) hasn't learned to be gentle yet. We were hoping since Motley has claws she could put her Bosco in her place, but Motley is reluctant to use her claws, which is good and bad depending on the case. Good: no shredded furniture, window treatments, or rugs. Bad: Bosco is still too rough with her.

It will take a few more weeks or months for everything to fall into a nice rhythm, but for now, we're all getting along well.

May 29, 2010

The Pantry

One of the things I love about our house is the large pantry. It was so much better than the zero storage we had at our first apartment. However, over the last year and a half that we've been in the house it has gotten a bit disheveled to say the least.

Pictures before:

So with a few days on my hands, I decided to tackle the pantry. It didn't take much time, one extra large garbage bag, and one trip to Target.

I started by taking everything out. Then I wiped and vacuumed the crummies. With everything out I could start with a blank slate and group like things together.

I even had some extra room to store a few small appliances!

I purchased a few media bins at Target and they were the perfect depth for the space. I put small things together in those. The lesser used items were put on a higher shelf.

The real trick will be keeping it this nice.

May 12, 2010

Our New Friend

We've actually had several new friends in our household. First, Henry Chapatoula, purple beta fish. Part of the decorations of my dear friend Allison's wedding. He has a lovely home in a blue bowl in the kitchen. Although he might be finding a new home soon.

The other night when the husband and I were headed out a small, motley looking cat came up to us mewing. It was so pathetic, yet so friendly. And much smaller than Tigger, our indoor kitty. He did not go away and I felt so bad for the little friend, I fed it. I know, roll your eyes, tell me how awful that is, whatever. I fed it. Its little and hurting and it needed help. I'd do the same for you and I'd hope you'd do the same for me.

Five days later, the cat is still around. I've called multiple societies and shelters, no one will take the little guy or girl. So I take matters into my own hands and take it to a vet.

I was initially worried about how I was going to catch a stray cat. Its been overly friendly (more friendly than our cat we've had for two years now), but you never know until you try to pick up a cat. I also wasn't sure if the cat was going to be around when I needed to round him/her to take it to the vet. But I came home and there it was laying in an empty pot. It mewed a hello to me as I opened the door to retrieve the cat carrier.

Cat carrier in hand, I picked it up and set it in the carrier. No problems. However, I had to listen to it howl for an hour. I never knew cats could make such noises.

An hour later, we have a girl. She has an absess that will need to be drained and a skin allergy. A couple hundred dollars and a few days, we will welcome home our latest addition, a spayed female kitty named Motley.

Apr 19, 2010

Happy Anniversary

Today marks two blissful years of marriage. To commemorate the event we took a weekend getaway to Little Rock, Arkansas. While not a 5 star getaway, it was a very relaxing and fun weekend. We made it back to town aroun 1 pm and had a wonderful afternoon and evening hanging around hte house and patio listening to live music at Huey's Anniversary party a block away.

However, things took a turn for the worse around 12:45 this morning. The house alarm went off. Our house came with an alarm system from a previous owner. We have not activated it, but it beeps anytime a door or window opens. That is enough security for me... that and we have a very large, ferocious dog. So when we were awakened in the middle of the night by constant beeping for an alarm we don't know anything about, we were a bit muddled to say the least.

Bryan was the first to realize what was going on. I just thought it was beeping like when you come in to an armed house and believe I mumbled something about just hitting the button before becoming cognizant of what was actually happening. After Bryan being out of bed messing with it for a few minutes and the sustained beeping, I decided it was time to see what was going on.

For a good forty-five minutes I hit "Bypass" every 8 seconds while Bryan did his best to figure out what the hell was going on and how to stop the constant beeping before both ended up in a sanitorium.

Finally, after 45 minutes of confusion and frustration it stopped. Neither of us has a clue why or how, but it did and that was enough for us. Until exactly an hour later... just as I was finally beginning to fall back into a peaceful slumber, the beeping. Oh, the beeping! Bryan jumped up and hit the button. Peace was among us again. Until exactly an hour later! I'm not sure how long this went on, but around 4 something it decided to begin beeping every 5 minutes. Bryan left me for the couch so as not to disturb me when he jumped up. Somehow at this point the beeping didn't disturb me so much. I guess after 4 hours one becomes immune to constant beeping. Who knew? Probably some poor tortured prisoner. Around 5 or so, the beeping stopped. For what we hope is good.

To celebrate our actual anniversary our plans include sleeping. Going to bed early and sleeping. Not quite as exciting as Boston or the wedding, but we look forward to it very much.

UPDATE: The above was written while at work. When I got to my front door I could hear the beeping already. My way of dealing with it until the husband got home was sitting out back where I could barely hear it. While talking to said husband he convinced me to try a combination of buttons which immedately set off the alarm alarm and a steady beep. Bosco, my guard dog, and I are sitting out front now making sure the police don't show up or something. Please send help! Constant beep + alarm is NOT FUN!

Mar 14, 2010

Herb Garden

Last summer I purchased a tall plant stand and 6 Mexican hand painted pots for my various herbs. It was an experiment, seeing as I do not have much gardening experience on my resume of life. But as I have begun cooking, I use a lot of fresh herbs. It can get expensive buying fresh herbs all the time. A few things went well... like the cilantro did okay for a while and mint turned out great. Bryan's pepper plant did well, except that we forgot to pick the peppers. Bosco destroyed the parsley, as it was on her level. Then eventually the herbs were scorched in the sun when I forgot to water them. And then Bosco managed to destroy all the pots but one. (That one now sits atop my fridge in the kitchen with some dried flowers in it.)

But with the approaching warm weather, I've been thinking about trying herbs again. This time inside. My plan is to add a few shelves in my laundry room which is mostly windows, but I think I could put a few small shelves up.

In a few weeks I'm going to take a week off and this will be my paint the laundry room and start my indoor herb garden week.

The Plan:
1) Finally paint the laundry room the light blue of my kitchen. NO MORE YELLOW!!!
2) Paint and install shelves.
3) Purchase terracotta pots and paint them the dark teal of the kitchen.
4) Purchase these saucers for the pots.
5) Purchase starter herbs or from seeds (I haven't decided yet) and plant them in newly painted teal pots.
6) Put it all together and enjoy fresh herbs for as long as it will last.

Anyone have any advice?

Mar 2, 2010

Lightbulb Conundrum

When we bought our house, it came with two small light fixture/fans in the kitchen. They are great. We especially love the dual fans in the warmer months. However, they light the kitchen with an odd shaped light bulb. We've probably wasted $50 on light bulbs that do not fit.

Not only finding the right size super annoying, but they burn out frequently. They generally burn out every 3-6 months. We've replaced all the bulbs multiple times already.

At this point I'm so frustrated I'm willing to buy new fixtures.

Any ideas as to why we're having problems keeping light bulbs in these suckers?

Feb 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

To celebrate Valentine's day this year, I surprised Bryan with a brewery tour at Ghost River Brewery downtown. It was actually a better tour than our Sam Adam's Brewery tour, which turned out to be an even better surprise.

We spent the rest of Saturday relaxing at home and watching Olympic games.

Today, Bryan surprised me with a custom made ring. Its gorgeous, yet understated, and if I'm able to get off the couch in the near future, I might post a picture of it. We had leftovers for lunch after church and watched more Olympic games. (Two sports I've never heard of before: Biathalon and Nordic Combined). Other highlights include a nap and Bryan cleaning all the dirty dishes left over from Friday night. (Didn't I marry well?!)

We have dinner reservations at a nice restaurant, which I'm excited about.

Hope you had a great Valentine's with your true love.

Feb 13, 2010

Facial Hair

I leave you this Saturday with a series of pictures. Enjoy

Don't worry, the Fu Man Chew (is that how you spell/say that?) did not last long. He's now clean shaven and I'm still wondering if he's actually my husband after living with a bearded man for 8 months.

Jan 30, 2010

Cabin Fever

Yesterday, Memphis experienced a bunch of winter weather. I was homebound (sick) and the husband joined me for the majority of the day. Today the roads are bad and we're not going out. While I'm content to sit in my pj's, lounge around all day reading magazines and books, playing sudoku, and just looking out the window with a glass of water. Others are not. Specifically the husband and the dog.

Since its so cold and icy out, I feel bad letting Bosco stay outside for any length of time. So I've been trying to keep her in and she's about to drive me crazy. Normally we give her a bone and she's content to chew for a while. But she went through three bones yesterday before getting tired of it. She is constantly roaming the house, trying to find something she can do to get herself into trouble. She is always successful at this.

The husband wants to know what we're doing next. What we're doing tonight. At least I don't have to chase him through the house. He's played Wii, we've watched episodes and movies. He's been for runs and helped in the kitchen.

Essentially... my cohabitants have cabin fever. And I think I catch it in waves. A little while ago I found myself vacuuming and polishing the stainless steel in the kitchen. Odd, I know. But I would be nice to get some things done in all this free time, I suppose.

Wouldn't it be nice if they would catch my laziness? I think so.

Jan 26, 2010

Happy Birthday, Baby

Today is Bosco's first birthday. In her honor, I give you a retrospective of her growth this past year.

The youngest picture we have of her. I think this was 6 weeks.

The day we brought her home.

At 11 weeks old.

16 weeks

18 weeks

21 weeks

23 weeks

8 months

9.5 months

10 months

Christmas morning, 11 months.

Jan 3, 2010

2 things

First, Christmas is gone, leaving a Christmas tree sized hole in our dining room. Nothing really was there before, but now it just seems so much emptier. Suggestions? Not considering a ficus. Never.

Second, Bryan plugged in my iPod and turned it to a regular shuffle (I've been listening to Christmas only shuffle for over a month now) and am rediscovering my music. I have good taste, if I say so myself. What are you listening to?

Jan 2, 2010

Christmas 2009

Okay, so I know this is WAY late, but I'm in the process of taking down my Christmas decorations and it got me thinking about how lovely the house was this year. So I thought I'd share.

This is our first Christmas in our house. Last Christmas we came home from Christmas dinner and starting taking down the tree. We closed and moved into this house on the 29th. Needless to say, with Christmas cut short last year and the new house, I was dying to decorate the house for Christmas this year.

Bryan decorated the outside for me as a birthday present. He was so sweet.

At one point there was garland over the front door, but it kept falling and ended up on the railings, but I never got a picture of it. Oh well...

I splurged a little on the tree as well as garlands. But it was the most beautiful tree there ever was. The perfect height, thickness, and fullness. I wish I could perserve it.

From around the house:

We hope you had a very merry Christmas this past year.