Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Monday, September 27, 2010
I had an early morning hair appointment at Trim. My colorist is moving to NYC next year, so we spent a good two hours talking about where he should live, which subway line runs closest to Parsons, what he should & shouldn't take with him, etc. I always get a little homesick for NYC this time of year & I'm really missing it right now.
For dinner we tried Bombay Palace for the first time. Man, that place is nice. Who knew? We loved it. Their food is so good! I had the malai kofta with garlic chili naan. OMG. That naan. Amazing! Definitely try this place if you haven't already.
Jessica & I decided to keep up our early morning run prior to studying for the comps. Our study comrade, Emily, lives in Lebanon so we decided to go to her this time since she came to us last week. I met Jessica on Donelson Pike & then she drove us out to Long Hunter State Park. There's a good, flat two mile trail there. We ran it twice, without stopping, except for a quick bathroom break. That's the first time I've run four miles straight through. I was so proud of myself! And it was a perfect place to run. There were deer & turkeys all over the place. And even at 8am, there were a lot of people out there walking, fishing, etc. It was really nice.
Post run, we met Emily at the Panera Bread at Providence & studied for two hours. Ugh. This test is the bane of my existence right now. Five more weeks, five more weeks....
Last night I finished watching Season One of Hung. Meh. It's definitely an interesting storyline & I did enjoy it for the most part, but I don't know if I love it enough to continue on with Season Two. We'll see.
Friday, September 24, 2010
Well, as you can see, the bed is back upstairs. For those of you following along at home, this brings the score to Linda 1, Baldwins 0. Thanks for all the emails and suggestions. It's good to know I'm not alone in this. Apparently all of you have had this same pet bed struggle.
Jessica's two dogs, Rudy & Toby refuse to sleep in their respective, size-appropriate beds. Toby, the larger of the two, likes the small bed, so Rudy, the runt, gets to stretch out in the big bed.
And then there's Penny. Oh, Penny. April did the same thing I did - initially bought a cheap bed, assuming in the immediate future she'd switch to a nicer/better bed. But Penny wasn't having it, so now Penny's new $40 cat bed serves as a toy box while she snoozes in her old, tiny bed.
As the saying goes, the heart wants what it wants, albeit a two year old, smelly, filthy, cheap faux suede dog bed from Big Lots. Oh, Linda.....
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
A little back story, when we got Linda over a year & a half ago, I went out & bought her the first dog bed I could find, thinking I'd replace it with a better one later. Ha! Little did I know how much she would fall in love with that crappy, $20 dog bed from Big Lots.
Fast forward to last week. My friend Haylee was giving away free dog beds. A friend of hers makes them out of leftover upholstery scraps & gives them away to shelters, etc. I took one home for Linda, ready to burn that horrible, filthy one she's been laying on for over a year. I put the new one where the old one was & moved the old one down to John's studio, where she likes to hang out now that he's home all the time. I'm realizing now the error of my ways. I think John said it best, "How would you feel if you came home & I had moved the couch into the garage?" Touche.
Obviously, she's not going to start using the new bed when her beloved old bed is still in the house. For a week, I've tried to get her to use her new bed by putting treats in it, etc., to no avail. You see, my friends, Linda is smarter than I am. It pains me to say that, but it's true. The joke's on me.
It has been suggested that I bring her decrepit old bed back upstairs & place it on top of the new bed & then one day take the old bed away. Away meaning away, not downstairs.
Monday, September 20, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
I've been running for pancakes since April. This morning Carrie, our beloved organizer, decided to take a picture of our little pancake crew. Why didn't we think of this sooner? Apparently we're all hams, which is appropriate since some of us (Heidi, MHG) like to "go ham".....
Without getting too mushy & thus endangering my street cred, these women have kind of changed my life. A little over a year ago, Mary Katherine recruited me into her book club, which isn't really a book club, but that's neither here nor there. I digress. I met these women last summer & thought to myself, "Holy shit, these bitches are in good shape! Maybe I should start running again." And I did. I did a couple 5Ks around town & made an effort to exercise harder & more often. Then in April, Carrie created this Pancake Run & the rest, as they say, is history.
I started running with them on Fridays & then running on my own two times a week. It's been a slow road, but I'm getting better. And by better I mean faster & skinnier, haha. But seriously, these lovely ladies have not only turned me into a runner, they're turning me into a better person. They are the most positive & encouraging people I know. Lately, I find myself asking WWHD (what would Heidi do)? Heidi is awesome & she's a beginner's best friend. I couldn't ask for a better group of friends. And! They've recruited me into East Nasty, which I am LOVING!
When I started, I was running a 15 minute mile, & that was if I could even finish running a mile. I'd say I'm around an 11 minute mile now & can run 3-5 miles. Who knew? Ideally, I'd like to get to a comfortable 10 minute mile & be able to maintain it for at least 3 miles. Hell, maybe I'll train for a half marathon. I can't imagine being able to run 13 miles, but then again, a year ago I couldn't imagine being able to run 3-5 miles either, so..... Crazier things have happened.
I want to give a special shout out to Mary Katherine, who I've known for 100 years & would not be doing this if she hadn't pulled me into her inner circle. Merci, mon ami!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Bourdain wrote the book in the late 90s when he was Executive Chef for Les Halles in NYC. It's partly the story of how he came up in the restaurant biz & how he became who he is today & partly what it's really like to work in a restaurant, particularly in the kitchen.
Pollyannas, take heed, this book is not for you. You need to possess a high tolerance for foul, lascivious language (mostly in Spanish), legal & illegal immigrants, & a preparedness to learn things about restaurants that will forever change the way you eat out.
Everyone else, go out & buy this book immediately. And don't worry if you don't have prior restaurant/kitchen experience nor aspire to, it doesn't matter. This book is enjoyable regardless. I cannot recommend it enough.
FYI -- I recommend buying/reading the updated paperback edition because Bourdain does a '10 years later' thing at the end that's pretty neat.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Another recipe from Mom. My mom always takes her left-over pot roast & turns it into a big, steaming pot of vegetable soup. Make a little cornbread to go along with it & voila! Dinner for days!
Monday, September 13, 2010
I made this & started watching Season One of Hung. I only watched the first episode, but I liked it. I wonder if I'd save money by subscribing to HBO in lieu of paying Netflix $20/month to watch all of HBO's shows....
I woke up at the crack of dawn to run a 5K in Lebanon for a candidate running for Senate. Actually, the race was for colon cancer, but we ran on George McDonald's team. Regardless, we had to be there at 7am, so it was an early morning. This is the first race I've run in about 7 months. All this running has made me faster. I think I finished my last 5K at around 44/45 minutes. I finished the one on Saturday at 38 minutes, which could have been a minute or two faster had I understood where the finish line was.... Long story. Anyway, I'm still fairly slow, running a 12 minute mile, but I'm definitely getting better.
Saturday afternoon I met my girl gang at the Frist Center for The Golden Age of Couture exhibit. It was so much fun! It's incredible to see how tiny women's waists were in the 40s & 50s. Beautiful, beautiful gowns. So glad we went.
Saturday night John took me to Germantown Cafe. It was so good! We've gotten into such a bad habit of not leaving our hood for dinner, which is fine, but sometimes you need to put on lipstick & venture further than Korea House. After dinner, we watched Hot Tub Time Machine. Correction: we watched about an hour of Hot Tub Time Machine. OMG, it was so bad. About half way through it, I turned to John & said, "I wish our bed was a time machine, so we could go back in time & not watch this movie."
Harris Teeter, aka 'The Teeter', keeps mailing me $20 off coupons if you spend $50. The problem is, they send them weeks before you can use them, so I always forget about them. Plus, who shops at Harris Teeter? Well, apparently I do because I decided to forgo my trifecta of grocery stores & do all of my shopping at The Teeter, albeit for $20 cheaper. It totally worked! They had everything I needed & I spent $60 for $80 worth of groceries. Score! I have another coupon for next week, so I may do it again. Hell, I guess I'll keep doing it as long as they keep mailing me coupons.
John & I made our annual trek to the Tennessee State Fair yesterday afternoon. We don't ride any rides, we go solely for the livestock & the deep fried goodness that is fair food. The weather yesterday was perfect. We stayed about two hours, petting goats & eating corndogs. Bliss!
Full fair photostream here.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
"... discouraged to see the 9/11 anniversary dominated by political disputes and sideshows, such as the furor this year over plans to build mosques and burn Qurans.
"I don't mind it being something that is discussed and argued about, but I wish it was focused on peace," Loyer said. "The whole point of all this is to make sure it doesn't happen again. The only way to address that is remove those ideological differences. Fighting only begets more fighting."
Friday, September 10, 2010
Last night John & I went to see our friend, Brian Ahern (BA), win a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Americana Music Association's Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium. I've known BA as long as I've known John. BA treats John like a son & has played a big role in John's life & career. He is near & dear to our hearts & we were honored that he asked us to share last night with him. Congrats, Brian!
Read more here.
Full photostream here.
On a related note, who knew I liked Americana music? I guess I honestly didn't know what it was until last night. I thought, incorrectly, that it was just another name for Country. Wrong! I think I heart this genre of music. Here's who I will be downloading on iTunes later today:
Carolina Chocolate Drops (OMG!!!)
Ryan Bingham (who I met & is super nice)
Wanda Jackson (new album produced by Jack White)
Do yourself a favor & check these folks out. I expect, like me, you'll find yourself pleasantly surprised.
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
A few weeks ago I met my mom for fabric shopping. She needed curtains & I needed bedroom pillows. We hit the jackpot at Textile Fabrics on Franklin Road. My mom bought me the two fabrics above & then took them to my Aunt so she could make them into pillows. I picked them up this weekend & LOVE THEM! They're perfect! I still need a white duvet & shams, but the pillows help so much. I'm also going to hang curtains. I'm thinking about moving the brown curtains from our living room up there & then buying something else for the living room. We'll see.
The prints are from Etsy. I need another print to go over John's nightstand. I'm having trouble finding one the same size as the one I have. I also still need something for the empty wall between the chair & the bed & I need to paint the dresser. I may try & do that soon. I just need to decide on a color. Once the dresser is painted, I'll start looking for a rug to go in front of it. There are some at West Elm that I have my eye on.
The shower curtain is from Urban Outfitters. We'd like to completely redo the bathroom, at which point I'll probably change the brown paint to some shade of grey, but for now it's remaining brown. I may get new bath mats though.
Full photostream here.
Full evolution of master bedroom here.
Although I took Friday off, I still got up for my 5:30am Pancake Run. Can I just say how nice it is to run in non-90 degree weather? Wow! Post run, I went to Bellevue to buy some frames at Michael's. As usual, Mike spotted me & we had a quick cell phone chat whilst sitting beside each other in traffic. Every time I go to Bellevue for secret shopping, Mike catches me. It's kind of hilarious actually.
I spent the rest of the day finishing Dexter Season Four & playing dress up. Friday night I stayed in & watched The Lovely Bones because it was apparently the day where I watched nothing but serial killer themed television. I didn't love The Lovely Bones. I liked the book, but the movie was weird. I don't know.
I got up & went to Spin then drove to Brentwood to meet my mom at my Aunt Ginger's house to pick up the pillows she made for my bedroom. The pillows are amazing! I spent the rest of the day arranging our bedroom (pics forthcoming). That night, John & I went to dinner, then came home & set him up on Facebook. Finally. It's admirable how long he's held out, but it was time.
I started the day by showing my underwear to the entirety of Wal-Mart when my skirt blew up & my hands/arms were too full to do anything about it. I was mortified. The day didn't really get better from there. We were having friends over for dinner & ran out to buy beer right before they got there & locked ourselves out of the house. In the hour it took us to get back into the house, we broke a doorknob, a deadbolt & a pane of glass.
Note to self: train Linda to unlock doors.
When I finally did make it to Publix, I passed a guy masturbating in his front yard. Seriously. Stay classy, West Nashville. Everything turned around once Katie & Rollum got there. We grilled hamburgers & Katie made these amazing smores bars. OMG! We ate & drank until midnight-ish. So much fun! I woke up on Monday really regretting making Katie take the leftover smores bars back home with her...
My parents spent all weekend doing renovations on their house, so we drove out there yesterday to grill out & see all the changes. The house looks great! They had new carpet installed in the bedrooms & hardwood installed throughout the rest of the house. Much better!
Last night, I watched Mad Men (OMG! Best episode EVER!) & made dinner while John fixed our recently demolished back door. Good times, good times...
Monday, September 6, 2010
I made hash brown casserole over the weekend & it was delicious! A couple years ago I made the Loveless Cafe hash brown casserole & didn't love it, so I never tried it again. We were grilling out hamburgers & John wanted something besides french fries, so I decided to give this casserole another go, albeit using a different recipe. I loved it! I'll definitely be making this one again.
I tried to make this casserole more like mac & cheese by adding mustard powder, garlic & panko. It worked! Highly recommend this recipe.
Sunday, September 5, 2010
This is my attempt at military chic. The jacket is darker in person, the flash washed it out. A darker skirt may be better, too, and black tights.
Of all the looks, this is the one I'm least sure about & probably won't wear, but that's okay. If any of you want to see this look in person, just look for Mary Katherine around town. She can pull it off better than I can.