Friday, July 30, 2010

Fun Fact Friday

Because it's Friday and because I am somewhat random... I'm going to share a few random facts with you all...

Random fact #1: I am a fan of Anthony Bourdain's, No Reservations. I know some people find him rather abrasive (i.e. mom) but I think that's why I love the show so much. He's totally brash and he says things without abandon. I can appreciate that, for sure. He has a great story. I mean, he went from serious heroine addict in 80's-- even spending one Christmas eve on the streets of New York selling records and tapes to pay for his heroine addiction-- to New York Time's best selling author and renowned chef.

His show comes on in the afternoons before Ryan ever makes it home from work. I have no desire to travel to the majority of the places he goes, or eat the majority of the things he does... yet I still find myself quite entertained.

Here's a good article (albeit a little dated) that really captures what kind of chef he is. Check it out sometime.

Random Fact #2:  I made tacos this week. Taco salad to be honest. I realize it's tough to segway from Anthony Bourdain, world renowned chef to Jessica Sanford-- taco salad, but that's how I roll.  I digress... The taco salad was really good and the reason they were so good was because of the cheese sauce I hooked them up with. I got the recipe from a blog post on another site. It's super simple but oh so good... please add it to your next batch of tacos. You won't regret it (although your waistline might).

pic via :: please note the yummy sauce in the above picture

Speaking of recipes... I'm trying this recipe this weekend. It seems so summery and perfect. I will report back on the out come.

Random Fact #3: For no apparent reason I feel the need to express my love for Will Arnett. He cracks me up. He officially owned me durning the short lived show, Arrested Development. From then on any movie he is in, whether the part is big or small-- he always cracks me up.

I think this picture really captures his sense of humor...

Random Fact #4: Ryan and I lost and then found Maggie this week. He had been in and out of the house doing a few things. I had just given her a bath and hadn't put her collar back on. All of a sudden I was all "where the hell is maggie?" which lead to panic because... Where was Maggie?

We frantically looked in the bedrooms, bathroom, living room, kitchen, laundry room... No dice. Ryan ran outside and called for her because maybe she slipped out when he was back forth outside.

Ryan was calling for her out in the yard, as Rocky called for Adrian... still nothing. We were almost certain she was gone... and without a collar we would never know what happened. But then I thought just maybe... and that's when we located her in the "office" (which is just a catch all and we keep that room shut off but Ryan had indeed been in there and then closed the door again). She was sitting there laughing on the inside, I'm sure. I think it cracked her up that we were being idiots and yelling for her and she was hanging out in the office all along. We hugged it out and that was that.

Don't be fooled by the innocence she is attempting to convey in this pic.

Random Fact #5: I'm not 15 but I have the hots for Zac Efron. I would love to be his Vanessa Hudgens, but I went and got married so I had to let that dream die.

I don't think he's a phenomenal actor by any means... but he's hot.. and I will probably go see Charlie St. Cloud just because he's in it. Just keeping in real here.

Hope these fun facts about yours truly made you feel more complete.

I also hope everyone has a spendid weekend. Our's will include a little house work, a party and a bit of rest.

Monday, July 26, 2010


Over the weekend...

Last week Ryan and I decided that we really needed a weekend without one thing/event we had to do or be at. We were going to take it easy and lay low. I wanted to hit up Home Depot and work on a few things around the house. Ryan didn't know it but he wanted to help me with a few things around the house.

Well, as the week progressed and Thursday was upon us we found out several of Ryan's hometown friends were going to be in town for this year's Aquapalooza on the lake. One thing lead to another and the next thing you know we are on board for a weekend filled with friends and fun on the lake.

Friday night we grilled at our house and then ventured over to some friends' house for an evening of catching up. Saturday we headed to the lake for Aquapalooza. This year's event was smaller than last year but just as much fun.

I don't have one single picture from Friday night or Saturday... I wasn't on my game apparently.

The only picture I do have is from Sunday... Ryan snapped it on my blackberry (so excuse the picture quality).

This is how Maggie and I spent our Sunday afternoon...

...regrouping from a weekend of fun!

Hope your weekend was as much fun as ours!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Two Wounded Feet

***I must preface this by saying: This is a post of nonsense. No one will probably care about this story and for those of you who make it to the end-- please, note there is no need to send any "get well" cards my way. Thanks.***

(this is the picture that came up when I googled "my feet hurt")

Bless my tiny feet. They have had a rough couple of days. Over the weekend I had an incident involving my right foot. I was returning from an evening out (I was staying at a lake house for a bachelorette party) and decided to take my shoes off prior to returning to the house, as my shoes were hurting my feet. As I stepped out of the car, which was too closely parked to the edge of the driveway... I hit some loose gravel.

The gravel created a gnarly wound on the bottom of my right foot. I tried to tell the friends I was staying with that my foot was injured badly. No one believed me until we took a good look. Let's just say gravel was lodged into my foot. Before bed that night (read three o'clock in the morning) I sent Ryan a text that read, "Love you. Hurt my foot. Puncture wound. It has bled. I think I'm okay though." I am sooo not dramatic, huh? (the things ryan puts up with)

So at the moment my right foot isn't in it's best shape.

Well, I went home for lunch today and decided to be productive while I was there. You see, our Lucite coffee table came in and so did our new furniture. I love the Lucite coffee table but paired with our new furniture it was too small. It just didn't work. So I've called CB2 and I'm sending it back.

While I was home for lunch I decided I need to move the new coffee table out of the living room so that it doesn't get messed up in anyway (since were not keeping it). So I moved it out-- no biggie. Next, I had to move the old coffee table back into the room. Everything went smoothly to begin with, but about half way through the process I dropped the coffee table on my left foot. One of my toes immediately began pouring blood from under the toenail... pretty gross stuff.

I handled it like a grown up by sitting down in the floor and mumbling a few choice words then tearing up.

I now have two wounded feet.  So if you see me out and about and I'm walking with a limp... I'm not trying to be thuggish or cool-- it's just that I have two injured feet.


Monday, July 19, 2010


The hostesses of my beautiful engagement party (back in January) were so kind to gift me with a lovely planter from Robinson Iron. It's actually the go to gift, as several other pals have gotten the planter as well.

Here's mine in action...

It is super wild and free, as that was the look I was going for. I think it's just lovely.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Photo of the Day

An action shot from our recent beach trip...

It only took us like three or four times to get this right.

Monday, July 12, 2010

A New Suit

Maggie had to spend the night all alone this past Saturday while Ryan and I were in Birmingham attending a wedding.

She just chilled in the kitchen, with food and water. I would have been scared because I don't like to spend the night alone... but Maggie seemed unphased. Ryan's sister, Ali, was kind enough to go by and walk her late Saturday night.

Sunday as Ryan and I were getting close to home, we began discussing just how scary it might be. Did she use the restroom inside? Did she get into something random? Did we leave something out that she could chew up? We didn't know what to expect, but we were bracing for the worst.

Upon entering the house we were greeted by sweet Maggie. Nothing was too scary and Mags seemed unphased by spending the night alone.

I decided she deserved a prize! I had to buy groceries and I just happened to walk by the pet care aisle. And there it was...

You see, Maggie loves the pool. We go quite often and she sun bathes on the top step of the pool. I think she finds it very relaxing.

So in honor or her being so good Saturday night I bought her a little something to make pool time even better:

Yes, that is a pink polka dot bikini!!

Maggie can't wait for our next day spent by the pool!!

Living Room Love

I've been living with Ryan officially for almost two months now. We have a small house with a lot of charm. The one complaint I would have to say is that we have tons of wedding gifts and not nearly enough storage to house them all. This has proved to be somewhat of an obstacle, but at the same time who can complain about receiving too many presents??

I would have to say that in our two month marriage we have yelled at each other bickered about the "clutter" several times. I'm working to find places to stores it all... (i.e... extra linens are in Rubbermaid totes under guest bed, fine china is in top of closet until we fit a china cabinet into the budget).

I love our little house, but it hasn't felt like home just yet. I still refer to it as "Ryan's house" 90% of the time. I think it's because I feel like it is still Ryan's house... not our home, does that make sense? I never actually had an official move in day. I have made several trips here and there and picked up various items and brought them over. It's kind of like I'm simply staying over for a while...

So, I have made the decision to change that. I am making "Ryan's house" "our home." I think the main reason I haven't bitten the bullet until now, so to speak, is because it overwhelms me to think of all the things I want done (i.e new vanity in bathroom, paint and redo bedroom, install some shelves in the laundry room, purchase a new kitchen table and chairs, strip and stain a piece of furniture, stain the porch, hang an outdoor fan the porch....) The thought of it all sort of cripples me into watching TV instead. This makes it great for me to stay on top of Bethenny getting Married?, New Jersey Housewives, The Bachelorette, and other nonsensical shows, but it hasn't done much as far making our house a stylish home.

I finally had to quit looking at the big picture and I have decided to take it one room at a time. We will finish things as we have the time and can afford them. I have decided the first project will be the LIVING ROOM!!

I found a living room that I loved as soon as I saw it. It's kind of quirky, a bit feminine, yet masculine at the same time.  LOVE, LOVE, LOVE...

I am using it as my inspiration. I love that it has neutral couches, with pops of color in the throw pillows, it has dark wood furniture and random pictures. I think it's great. I spent a few days looking for something that "spoke to me" more so than this room and nothing came to me. I then decided to run it by Ryan to make sure he would be on board with me revamping our living room with this room in mind. I thought it would be a tough sell (especially with the Lucite coffee table) but he was on board. So full speed ahead.

I started out by looking for a couch online. I found one on Pottery Barn, but it wasn't exactly in my price range. I decided I would use it as an inspiration piece while looking for something less expensive.

Over the weekend, I ventured to Birmingham to spend the weekend with my BFF, Lacey. I had one objective: FIND A COUCH AND LOVE SEAT! And that's just what we did...

The only stipulation I had from Ryan was that I find a couch that would be long enough for him to stretch out on. (he's 6'2"). I could handle that.

This is our new couch (and style of the love seat) that will be delivered on July 20!! Whooo Hooo!

And don't worry, I took Ryan by to see it before I made the big purchase and I insisted that he lay down on it. He fit just fine!

I realize that this fabric is rather light... So we paid extra to have the couch treated and a three year warranty. Should we spill something on it, or stain it in someway we simply have to make a phone call and someone will be sent to professionally clean it.

I have also purchased these two prints that will go somewhere in the room:

Pottery Barn had their frames on sale with free shipping so I've got some cool frames on the way. I let Ryan pick which animals we purchased. I think these are so cool. They are printed on pages from vintage books.

I found this rug online and think it will work well in the room. It is similar to the rug  in the inspiration room and it is 100% cotton so it can be easily dry cleaned!

Click the link above to see a photo of the rug used in a room. The colors are actually more vibrant.

I didn't know if I would be able to find a Lucite coffee table which was affordable. However, after some research I found one for a decent price and Ryan has agreed for me to purchase it as well. YAY!!

I'm still on the hunt for a really cool mirror like the one in the inspiration room (square with thick dark wood). I also need to figure out what to do about our built in bookshelves. I need to style them in a way that jives with the overall feel of the room. Another thing I need to decide on is the window treatments and a potential paint color. My BF Katie Beth is going to help me out... she has great taste and savvy sense of style.

I will keep you all updated and may even do a Before and After post when it's all said and done.

Once we get the living room down... we will move on to the bedroom. One step at a time... one project at a time... "Ryan's house" is becoming "our home."

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Wake up Maggie...

For those of you who are dying to know, Maggie did great spending the weekend with Ryan's parents. Buddy (Ali's dog) had to get used to her but other than that it was fine.

Maggie is now a little more spoiled from her weekend getaway. Ryan and I joked that she probably thought she was something special spending the weekend at a lake house out of town. Rumor has it she ate when she wanted to, she went to work with Mr. Benny one day, didn't spend much time in her kennel, and watched a boat parade and fireworks.

She was just as tired from her weekend getaway as we were....

An Inside Look: Oil on the Beaches of AL

The beach wasn't too scary from the oil, but I did document thoroughly. Prior to us leaving for our trip we heard all sorts of rumors about the beach:

The beaches are closed--- No one can step foot on the beach--- Bathing suits are getting ruined from swimming in the ocean--- It smells terrible--- The beach looks awful--- If you get in the ocean you have to bathe in GoJo-- (Obviously some rumors were more ridiculous than others).

The list goes on and on. I was not to be defeated by BP's negligence. I felt like I need to support my state's lovely coast, as many people have opted not to do so.

I did make sure to book a condo with a nice pool in case the beaches were inaccessible. The first day we arrived the weather was terrible. We got some rain from the tropical depression that came through last week so we didn't venture on the the beach that day.

We played cards instead...

...Can you guess by looking at the cards what the family business might be?

As we were playing cards on the balcony, the weather began to clear up as the afternoon approached sunset. Just as it had gotten dark we saw a caravan of tractors heading down the beach.

Being the investigative journalist that I am... I yelled at Deidra, "COME ON... WE NEED TO INTERVIEW THESE PEOPLE." Being the friend that Deidra is... she lead the way... in full sprint.

We marched right out on the beach and stopped these two people:

I told them I wrote for a blog and I was interested in knowing exactly what this process was all about. They were scared at first and didn't know whether they should answer my questions, so I told them that my mom and a few friends are the only people who read my blog...

Turns out, these two people drive ahead of the caravan of tractors in search of sea turtle eggs. Once they find a nest, they mark it and later on all the sea turtle eggs will be moved to South Florida so that when they hatch they will be able to make their way in the ocean with out the harmful effects of the oil. (I was super stoked to hear that the sea turtles were being looked after).

This machine is used to sift the sand. It pulls up the sand and sifts the oil patties from the sand.

Once this machine is full they dump the oil patties into the front-end loaders. They go up and back down the beach every night in attempt to keep the beaches accessible to tourist.

The next day we ventured out on the beach. There wasn't a terrible odor, but our beaches are littered with what the media has termed "tar balls." We called them "oil patties" because the aren't a hard ball of tar. They are somewhat hard on the outside but if stepped on crude oil will end up on your feet.

You sort of have to navigate your way past the oil patties, but once you do it's fine. The ocean was wasn't too bad. I didn't swim in it, but Deidra did and her bathing suit wasn't ruined nor did she have to bathe in GoJo that night. She did say that the bottom of the ocean floor is also littered with "tar patties."

After the bad weather on the first day, water from the high tides had pooled along the beach in one area. This isn't unusual, but the color of it was...

After the night crew came through this area of the beach was cleaned up the next morning.

BP has workers in the area and their presence is felt. From the caravan at night, to the crew working the beach during the day, to the huge set up of equipment at the state park. It's just such a tragedy that they even have to be there.

Don't let the oil stop you from taking your annual trip to the beach. It's really sad how the it has effected tourism. The Fourth of July should be one of the busiest weekends of the summer, but not this year. We rarely had to wait at a restaurant, the beaches were sparsely populated, and the bars were not packed to the brim.

I can only imagine what type of economic impact this oil spill has had on the towns we love along the coast. If nothing else now is the time to plan a beach trip. Rates for condos are discounted, crowds are at a minimum, and traffic was a breeze.

All photos were taken on the beach in Orange Beach, AL

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

4th of July Fun

*Hopefully I can add some pics to this post once I get a few from Ali.

We made it back to the real world from our much needed beach vacay. If I were 100% honest with you guys (and I like to be) I would have to admit that I could move to the beach. It's my happy place.

Our trip was great! We ate A LOT... I'm talking shrimp, scallops, crab claws, fish, crab cakes... We semi-raged, we relaxed on the beach, and we hit the outlet mall for some great deals. Basically, we did all the typical things one would do while on a beach getaway!
Brother/Sister Pic right before Ali and I shut everyone down on the dance floor at Live Bait. Literally. We were that good.

Raging at a the latest hot spot, O'Choppers. What's O'Choppers you might ask? Well, one night we got off to somewhat of a late start (i.e. we were looking for a place to eat dinner at 10 o'clock) and as it turns out O'Choppers is one of two places we were told served dinner this late. It's an Irish Pub full of Cougars on the Prowl.

This is what happened when we asked the boys to pose for a photo.

I didn't want anyone to forget what the weekend was really about, so I made everyone recite The Pledge of Allegiance. It's was touching.

The condo was a bit on the cool side. Blake said Ali and I were "three peas in a pod." I still haven't figured out who the other pea was or why Ali and I sat as close together on the couch.

Good Times had by all!!

"The Truth about the Oil on our Beaches" coming up in the next post!

Who Knew?

Who knew Leo was an AU fan*?

Not only did he steal my heart in Titanic when I was in the seventh grade, but he is attempting woo me again by rocking my team's logo. Oh Leo, if you're reading this... near, far, where ever you are, my heart skipped a beat just seeing this picture.

*Apparently Leo has a huge collection of college hats.
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