Thursday, April 25, 2013

Favorite Things: April 2013 Edition

1. Sonic Sweet Tea with Mango & Peach Flavor
Oh, how I love any and all sweet tea. Real sweet tea is one of my favorite thing about the south. I was so excited when sonic started to make sweet tea. I love to add in the flavors too. And sonic has that totally chewable, wonderful ice, and the tea comes in that cup that keeps it cold and non-watery all day long, and it is just perfect.

2. Evening Walks with This Little Lady
Watching Carlee again this week, and with the nice weather we had this weekend. It has been positively lovely to take her out for walks. 

3. Scentsy Scent Circles
These are definitely my new favorite scentsy products. They are like pine tree air fresheners without that artificial tree scent (which always gave me a headache). I love getting that burst of scent when I first get into the car in the morning. By the way, I'm a scentsy consultant now, so if you want to buy anything check out my website!

4. Spring Blossoms
I love all the new flowers, trees, and blossoms that are popping up all over the place! Especially the ones at my favorite jogging park.

Recent Favorite Tunes:

1. Highway Don't Care by Tim McGraw feat. Taylor Swift
2. Don't Leave Me (Ne Me Quitte Pas) by Regina Specter
3. Brave by Sara Bareilles
4. Showstopper by Leah & Brandon
5. Oh No! by Marina and the Diamonds

Wish List:

Trio of Bubushkup Nesting Glasses

Owl Cookie Jar

What Makes me Laugh Lately:

Some brilliant person redid the Golden Girls theme song with superheroes! Aquaman as Rose is classic.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Montgomery: Birthplace of a Famed Flapper & The Confederacy

I woke up in Montgomery on Saturday Morning ready to get my day going. My original plan was to go to the Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald museum first. But when I pulled up the website, I realized that the museum didn't open till 1! So instead, I decided to go and grab some breakfast. I stopped at a place I had seen the night before called The Egg and I. It was such a cute little place and apparently had been voted the best breakfast in Montgomery.  And I know why! It was so delicious. I had the stuffed French toast and ranch potatoes. It was really like a French Toast Sandwich.

 After breakfast, I decided to explore downtown. I love City Downtown's, especially Southern Ones. They are just so full of history, and Montgomery was no different. It seem like every time I turned a corner, there was some historical plaque telling me something I didn't know happen there. Like the one pictured above, of the Confederate Military Prison. There was also one marking the site of the Montgomery Bus Boycott to end segregation (where Rosa Parks first took her stand).

I meandered down to the Alabama river front, where a big rely for life event was going on. And there was tons of people everywhere. There were also Homeland Security Trucks and heavy security at the event. No doubt because of the recent Boston Bombings. Regardless, I was just happy to see so many people out and running. I think that my favorite thing about living in America is that no matter what happens, whether we are attacked by our own citizens or someone from a foreign country, we just go on, without fear, and live our lives, do our thing, and keep on keeping on.
Two of the coolest things at the riverfront was the old fashion paddle boat and the high water mark. I don't know if it is obvious from the picture, but one year the Alabama River flooded over 53 feet! That is just crazy, it almost seems impossible.

Next, I decided to check out the first white house of the confederacy. Which not only served as the capital of the confederacy, it was also the Alabama residence of the president of the confederacy, Jefferson Davis & his family.  Just like the Lotz house, I just love looking at old houses and antique furniture.

Across the street from the white house, is the real capital building of the state of Alabama. I wanted to go inside, but it never occurred to me that the capital is where business is done, and like most public government buildings, they are closed on the weekends. Duh, Brittany. But never the less, the grounds were beautiful, and across the street from the capital is the church that Martin Luther King Jr was pastor of. Which was a nice little surprise to stumble over.

It was finally time for what I came to see, which was the one time home of Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald. I had recently finished a biography about Zelda and it got me obsessed with her! There wasn't a whole lot to the museum, but it was very nice just to walk in the footsteps of the Fitzgerald's and to imagine them living there. I loved seeing her original paintings on the wall and the family photographs.

When I was leaving, I asked the volunteer curator if she had a machine that took debit cards so I could get a magnet (Adam and I collect magnets, and I have one from every place we've been in the last four years). She didn't, but she insisted on giving me five dollars to buy a magnet. I tried to resist but she just told me to pay it forward. It was so kind.
When I went to Starbucks after the museum, I was going to pay it forward and pay for the car behind me. But the car behind me had like five people in it and I wasn't quite prepared to pay it forward that much, but that is my plan for my next coffee trip.
I had a wonderful solo weekend, but I really miss my husband. And I think it is always good to get a chance to really miss my husband and appreciate all the things I love about him. He gets home tomorrow night and that is making Monday seem a lot less scary.

Friday, April 19, 2013

When the Rooster is Away, The Hen Will Play...

Adam flew to Iowa yesterday, to spend some time with his friends from high school. A trip I'm so glad he gets to make because back when we lived in California, I often got to fly back home to see family and friends, but he rarely did. And if he has half as much fun as I do on my girls' weekends, he is going to have a blast.  Plus, he has been working so hard and so many long hours lately, he truly deserves some fun.
But with him being gone, I was left to wonder what could I do to entertain myself? And sure, I could stay him and do nothing and there is some value in that. But part of me just wanted to go on some type of adventure. I batted around some ideas but finally settled on spending the weekend in Montgomery, Alabama.
I don't mind traveling alone. In fact, I kind of love it. Being behind the wheel, windows rolled down, blasting the music I want to listen to (even if I make slightly embarrassing choices like Britney Spears & Taylor Swift). Only stopping when I want to stop.  And I love staying in hotel rooms! Hotel rooms to me always feel kind of decadent. I used to dream of living in a hotel. Maybe just for the fact someone makes your bed for you everyday.
So now here I sit, in my cheap, but not unpleasant hotel room, eating Nachos from Moe's, and watching HLN, which might as well be renamed the Jodi Arias Network, because all they play now is that trial. Not that I'm hatin', I'm slightly obsessed with that trial.
If you are wondering why Montgomery? Well, I've been interested in learning about Ernest and Hadley Hemingway for quite a while, and in studying about them, I got intrigued by F.Scott Fitzgerald and Zelda Fitzgerald! And Zelda is from Montgomery! And she lived here with Scott for a little while. The house they lived in together has been turned into a museum. So I'm going to check that out and a few other historical sites as well.
And based on the picture of a nearby street sign I took earlier this evening, I'm in the right place! 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

A Moveable Feast

The best bits of A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway:

With so many trees in the city, you could see the spring coming each day until a night of warm wind would bring it suddenly in one morning. Sometimes the heavy cold rains would beat it back so that it would seem that it would never come and that you were losing a season out of your life. This was the only truly sad time in Paris because it was unnatural. You expected to be sad in the fall. Part of you died each year when the leaves fell from the trees and their branches were bare against the wind and the cold, wintry light. But you knew there would always be the spring, as you knew the river would flow again after it was frozen.

But Paris was a very old city and we were young and nothing was simple there, not even poverty, nor sudden money, nor the moonlight, nor right and wrong nor the breathing of someone who lay beside you in the moonlight.

“They seemed to like us too and treated us as though we were very good, well-mannered and promising children and I felt that they forgave us for being in love and being married - time would fix that - and when my wife invited them to tea, they accepted.”

Our pleasures, which were those of being in love, were as simple and still as mysterious and complicated as a simple mathematical formula that can mean all happiness or can mean the end of the world.

When you have two people who love each other, are happy and gay and really good work is being done by one or both of them, people are drawn to them as surely as migrating birds are drawn at night to a powerful beacon. If the two people were as experienced or as solidly constructed as the beacon there would be little damage except to the birds.

When I saw my wife again standing by the tracks as the train came in by the piled logs at the station, I wished I had died before I ever loved anyone but her.

Nobody climbs on skis now and almost everybody breaks their legs but maybe it is easier in the end to break your legs than to break your heart although they say that everything breaks now and that sometimes, afterwards, many are stronger at the broken places. I do not know about that now but this is how Paris was in the early days when we were very poor and very happy.

“Never go on trips with anyone you do not love.”

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.”

Sunday, April 14, 2013

A Saturday in Franklin

This Saturday my mother and I drove to Frankilin, Tennesse, to see a few of the civil war sites. Franklin is a site of a huge battle which killed over 10,000 troops. It is not one of the most famous battles because Franklin has not done a good job of preserving the land. But they are now in the process of trying to reclaim areas of the battlefield.
The main place we went to see was the Lotz House.  Let me tell you a little about the poor Lotz family. Mr. Lotz came all the way to Franklin, Tennessee, from Germany to bring his master wood crafting skills to America. He built a beautiful house with the finest furnishings, that also served as a show room for his business.
On the day of the battle, Union troops knocked on Mr. Lotz house and told him they were going to do some landscaping, and by landscaping they meant "demolish his property." He took his family across the street to a brick basement to wait out the battle. They stayed there for 17 hours. When they emerged, bodies were everywhere, their house was severely damaged, and being used for a war hospital (the red flag outside the house is how you know it was a hospital). On the inside the house, you can even see blood stains on the floor.
It took Lotz quite a bit of time and effort to repair the house. When he was done, he made a carving of an American Eagle tearing up an Confederate Flag to decorate his house. The Ku Kux Klan got wind of this art piece, were not happy, and planned to tar and feather him in his front yard. For Lotz, this was the last straw, and he packed up his family and moved to San Jose, California.
The house was beautiful inside and out. I wish I could have taken pictures on the inside, the 150 year old antiques were just amazing.

After we left the house, we went to downtown Franklin to grab some lunch and do a little shopping. We ate at Puckett's groceries. It is a delicious Southern style restaurant.  And that picture there is the Southern Comfort Burger, which is nothing short of amazing!
I love little old Franklin, Tennessee, and I can't wait to go back and see a few more sites.   

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Trivial Pursuits

For the last few weeks, my mom and I have been going to trivia night every Monday at a local Mexican restaurant. And we love it. It is so much fun to test our knowledge about things that really don't matter. Because really, when will it matter that I know that Chip N' Dales crew was know as the RESCUE RANGERS (ON SECOND THOUGHT, HOW WOULD YOU NOT NEED TO KNOW THAT)?

We have had various levels of success. We have finished ninth, and we have finished fourth. But we have never placed in the winners' circle (the top three). But I have to give ourselves some credit because we are a table of two. And sometimes there are tables there of eight! And eight people should have more collective useless knowledge than just two.

There are several teams that come week after week, and one of them is a huge table of people. They call their team The Red Hot Chili Peppers. And they are our arch nemesis. They are perfectly nice people I'm sure, and they haven't done anything wrong, but they always win! And that is what fuels our competitive spirit, we have to beat the Red Hot Chili Peppers!

Last night, my mom couldn't make trivia night, so Adam and I decided to go instead. Our first order of business was to choose our team name.  We decided on "Team Blueshell" ala Mario Kart. Because Mario Kart is not only the best video game ever, we have spent hours upon hours racing each other in that game (by the way, have you heard Mario Kart Love Song? So Cute). And just so you know, there are few things more fun than racing the one you love, and just trying to beat the crap of them using items like banana peels & magic mushrooms.

Things were going along swimmingly at trivia at first, we were answering our questions based on the most random set of knowledge ever. But by the time we got to the last question, we were in fifth place. When we got to the bonus last question, I was about 75% sure I knew the answer. So I wanted to bet the full amount of points. But Adam wanted to play it conservatively. So we only bet half the points. And I had the right answer!

Not only did I have the right answer. We were one of the only two teams to get it right. And if we had bet all the POINTS, we would have finished second and beat the Red Hot Chili Peppers! I couldn't believe it! Victory just slipped through my fingers. See this is where compromising with your husband gets you! No where.

I'm kidding, really. I would rather lose and have my husband with me than win without him. But still we could have won!

After we left the restaurant, I called my mom and let her know how close we came to beating the Red Hot Chili Peppers. I had to laugh when she said, "You know, I was thinking about how much I wanted to beat them earlier today."

I guess there is always next week. 

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Linen Anniversary

As far as anniversary celebrations go, I wouldn't say this was our finest. The night before our anniversary I had gone for an easy peasy 20 minute jog, and then I randomly developed a sore throat. By the next morning, my head was pounding and my teeth hurt.  I just felt like I was dying. So I spent all morning in an urgent care center with my mom getting some medicine and a big, old painful steroid shot in the butt.  Then, I went home and took something like a three hour nap.

By the time I woke up, I didn't feel all that much better. I certainly didn't feel like getting dressed and going anywhere, even if it was a big day! So Adam did something really sweet. Last Valentine's Day, I made Adam a custom love coupon book from So instead of being bummed out about how we were spending the anniversary, Adam said he would cash in this coupon! Making it seem like staying at home was our plan all along.

So he ran out to the pharmacy to pick up my medications, and then he headed to Cracker Barrel and got dinner to go. We spent the evening eating good country food and catching up on some of our favorite shows, such as Archer, Community, & The Soup. It was a perfectly pleasant evening.

So even though we've had more exciting anniversaries. This one was just simple and sweet. And I think the most wonderful thing about being married is knowing you have many more years to do it big.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Four Years

I went to a small college in Mississippi that didn't really have sororities, but we had an equivalent known as social clubs. And one of the things that social clubs did was sing class songs in the cafeteria when they were pledging. Something that was both enduring and annoying.  When it was time for the senior song, the underclassmen would get down on their knees, & salute the standing seniors while they sang, "Four Years We've Been Here, Now We're the Finest. We are on Top Now. Hail to the Senior Class!"

This little anecdote is all to say that today is our four year wedding anniversary. And I think four years is somewhat like the senior year of marriage. Just like the first day of your senior year, we are going into our fourth year knowing a whole heck of a lot about marriage & each other. We know what makes each other tick, we knows what each other likes, and what each other hates. We know how to avoid pushing the other person's button. And Adam knows when I'm cranky that I may just need to eat or take a nap!

I feel like we have left those awkward growing pains of the freshmen years of marriage in the dust. At least the awkwardness, that comes from merging two lives and defining what your life is going to be together. I remember in the early days, even after we were first married, I would hate if we would go out to eat and we just didn't have much to talk about. I would get so insecure that it meant we were bored with each other.  Or when we had our first few fights my paranoia would make me worry that it just might take us down.

Now I can appreciate that the occasional silence, only represents a comfort with each other and not a sign of disinterest. And now I take any fight we have in vain because I know ultimately it will all just blow over. 

But I'm not saying there are no new challenges for us to face because there are. Soon we will become home owners, which will offer its own set of challenges. And we are hoping to start a family of our own someday soon. But I look at those life experiences as another way to grow together. Because I think that is what marriage is about, growth.  I truly believe that if the person you are with doesn't make you a better person than why are you with them? Adam makes me a better person, and I hope I make him one.

The one thing I know for sure is we are so much better together than we are apart and these four years have been wonderful.

I just can't wait to see what the next four years will bring.