Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Flats or Pumps?

Which do you prefer? I never wear flats. I'm sure they are comfy, just never seem to find any I really like. All my pants and jeans are long so what do you do when you want to wear flats?? I seriously think I would have to buy shorter pants... Anyway, there are some super cute flats now that all the Fall shoes are out so I am thinking about getting a pair (or two) this year.
1. Anthropologie: Chamelion Skimmers
2. Macy's: Jessica Simpson Ellye
3. Dillard's: Gianni Bini "Agate"
4. Anthropologie: Mudslide
5. Macy's: G by Guess Mecca
6. Dillard's: Jessica Simpson "Lepolia"

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Lunch Outside the Box

Although I try to "brown bag" on most days, I do love getting out of the office at least one day a week to either try a new place or an old favorite. There are so many great places to choose from this is going to be hard to just pick a few! I do like the Lenny's, Bogie's, Jason's Deli, etc but when you are in the mood to step outside the box here are a couple places I recommend.

Trolley Stop Market: 704 Madison Avenue
Yum, yum!! This is my new favorite. Each day they have lunch specials- usually two meats and a long list of fresh veggies that can be found on their chalkboard wall behind the counter. They have a regular menu that features sandwiches and salads and also have awesome pizza's and homemade desserts to choose from each day. My favorites are the BLT with Pimento Cheese, Meat and 3, Margarita Pizza and the Texas Sheet Cake which definitely gets its name from the size! You can't leave without walking around where you will see local art, jewelry, soaps, flowers, and fresh veggies from local farmers. Love the food and the atmosphere! It has only been opened a couple months now but is always packed!!

Cafe Ecletic: 603 N. McLean or 111 Harbortown Square
This quaint little coffee shop is a must try and they just recently opened a Little Cafe Eclectic in Harbor Town. They have great coffee, sandwiches, salads and soups and although I have never tried anything from their Bakery- it all looks fabulous! My two favorites are the Grilled Chicken with Pineapple and the BLT&A sandwiches. Have also heard their breakfast is great!

Cafe Palladio: 2169 Central Avenue Located inside Palladio Antiques. Great sandwiches and salads! The Southern Fried Green Tomato sandwich is so so good. They usually have a coupon you can print off from the web for a free dessert. Their cakes are from Sugaree's Bakery in New Albany, MS and if you have ever had one from there- you know how good it is! The caramel cake is hard to pass up. The antiques are also fabulous but a little too pricey for me...always fun to window shop!

A couple other places I recommend are Bronte' located in Davis Kidd Bookstore, Little Tea Shop, Au Fond Farmtable, and Bosco's. Let me know what your favorites are! I love trying new places!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Ohhh Running

I definitely was not born a runner. I started running in Middle School because we were forced to do it during basketball and I actually enjoyed it and have continued to run on and off ever since. Running to me is about setting personal goals and achieving personal victories. I ran the St. Jude Half Marathon last year. It was my first half and I loved it. There is just something about the people cheering, high-fives, bands, going through the St. Jude campus, the funny signs (my favorite was one at mile 10 that said...Your feet are hurting because your kicking a$$!!), hearing your name announced once you cross the finish line in Autozone park, and even the random belly dancers in front of Wendy's that keep you going no matter how bad your feet, legs and knees are aching. Seeing the finish line in the distance and getting that shiny medal gives you a feeling of accomplishment you never forget.
I have signed up for the St. Jude half again and am hoping to kick last years time in the butt! :) The Memphis heat is horrendous so in June I decided to go ahead and start training and getting up every morning and running at least 3 miles. I honestly didn't think I would stick with this but here I am 8 weeks and 127 miles later.

Since my hubby bailed on me and will not be running in it this year...if any of my 3 readers would like to join me when it's cooler at Shelby Farms for long runs- let me know! :)

I will leave this exciting blog post with a song from U2 that's always included on my running play list...

I have climbed highest mountains
I have run through the fields
Only to be with you
Only to be with you
I have run
I have crawled
I have scaled these city walls
These city walls
Only to be with you

But I still haven't found what I'm looking for

I have kissed honey lips
Felt the healing in her fingertips
It burned like a fire
This burning desire

I have spoke with the tongue of angels
I have held the hand of a devil
It was warm in the night
I was cold as a stone

But I still haven't found what I'm looking for

I believe in the Kingdom Come
Then all the colors will bleed into one
Bleed into one
But yes I'm still running

You broke the bones
And you loosed the chains
Carried the cross
Of my shame
Of my shame
You know I believe it

But I still haven't found what I'm looking for

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

One Dish Dinner

Who doesn't love a one dish dinner?? This recipe is so good and easy and can be prepared a day before.

Mexican Casserole:

* 2 10-3/4-ounce cans reduced-sodium condensed cream of chicken soup
* 1 10-ounce can diced tomatoes with green chiles, undrained
* 3/4 cup chopped green sweet pepper
* 1 10-ounce can black beans, drained
* 1/2 cup chopped onion
* 1-1/2 teaspoon chili powder
* 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 12 6- or 7-inch corn tortillas, cut into thin, bite-size strips
* 3 cups cubed cooked chicken
* 1 8-ounce package (2 cups) shredded cheddar cheese
* Tomato slices
* Sliced green onions

1. Combine soup, tomatoes with chiles, sweet pepper, onion, black beans, chili powder, and black pepper; set aside.
2. To assemble, sprinkle about one-third of the tortilla strips over the bottom of an ungreased 13x9x2-inch baking dish or 3-quart rectangular casserole. Layer half of the chicken over tortilla strips; spoon half of soup mixture on top. Sprinkle half of the cheese and another one-third of the tortilla strips over the soup mixture. Layer with remaining chicken, soup mixture, and tortilla strips.
3. Bake, uncovered, in 350 degree oven about 45 minutes or until bubbly around edges and center is hot. Remove from oven; sprinkle with remaining cheese. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. If desired, top with sliced tomatoes, green onions and sour cream. Makes 8 servings.


Monday, August 9, 2010

Favorite Accessory

One of my favorite go to accessories is a belt. They are so functional and can completely change the look of any outfit. Many of the tops and dresses now are loose fitting and while this is the "trend" it's not always the most flattering. Belts are so affordable. I like to stick with basic colors because they are more versatile but it's also fun to add some color every now and then as well. Below are a couple I have found all under $40!

1. Urban Outfitters BDG Stretch Equestrian: $28
2. Modcloth Buffalo Jill: $32.99
3. Macy's Rachel Roy Skinny Double Wrap: $38
4. Anthropologie Tellicherry: $28
5. Anthropologie Coded Cutout: $38
6. Urban Outfitters Urban Renewal Leather Wrap: $28

Friday, August 6, 2010

Table Hopping

One benefit of living in a city is great restaurants and Memphis definitely has its fair share. I love supporting locally owned businesses and restaurants. Memphis has recently started a campaign called Project Green Fork and many restaurants have come on board with this. Project Green Fork contributes to a sustainable Mid-South by helping reduce environmental impacts, with a focus on strengthening homegrown restaurants. I also believe the campaign supports local farmers which is great to know that when you dine out, not only are you supporting a local business owner but a local farmer too!

A few of my local favorites:

Restaurant Iris: I don't think you could go wrong with anything on the menu here. They do occasionally change their menu but my recommendations are: "grilled cheese," sweet corn griddle cakes, raviolo, and the surf and turf. The entrees are pricey but the food and the atmosphere are worth every penny!

Spindini: This is my go to favorite for downtown. I love the layout of the restaurant and it's also a great place to people watch! Jason and I almost always get the Lobster Pizza and the Tuscan Butter=YUM, however I have changed it up on occasion and also love the Tuna Carpaccio, Caramelized Scallops, the Halibut and the Filet. On Monday nights they even have half price pizzas and half price bottles of wine!

Flight: I love the concept of getting to try 3 different small plates which they consider a Flight. They also have drink flights as well...so neat! If only one item on the menu sounds good, you can just get one big entree. I just recently found out that you can actually get one item off the seafood flight, one off the fish flight and so on. Check out their menu for all the details! I have only eaten here twice but you can't beat the food and service.

Itta Bena: Itta Bena is named after a small town in MS and is located above BB King's. When entering the restaurant, you almost feel like you are going to a private place because they do not even have a sign outside. This place has the coolest ambiance and the food is amazing. My favorites are the fried green tomatoes with shrimp and remoulade, scallops with grits, baby spinach salad, and the crawfish mac and cheese. So good and so fun!

You can't forget about dessert!!

My two favorite places are the Cheesecake Corner located downtown in the South Main district and Muddy's Bake Shop located in East Memphis.

The Cheesecake Corner has unbelievable cheesecake in almost any flavor you can imagine. I would recommend splitting one unless you are super hungry because they are very large!

At Muddy's Bake Shop, for only $1.50 you can enjoy a perfectly sized made from scratch cupcake. My favorite is the Strawberry Fields Forever but I have tried a few of the others and they are all delicious.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

It's Fall Y'all

Well...maybe not quite but according to retail it is. I just can't bring myself to try on Fall clothes when it's 100+ degrees outside. So, I have been doing some browsing online to see what's in store. So far I have seen a lot of mustard-ish, eggplant and grey colors which I am loving. Below are some of the favorites I have found and am hoping to add to my Fall wardrobe.

From Left:
1. Short Sleeve Dolman Cardigan www.loftonline.com
2. Remain Ruffed Tank www.nordstrom.com
3. Aspiring Atoms Necklace www.anthropologie.com
4. Terrace House Jacket www.anthropologie.com
5. Ruffle Trim Crop www.nordstrom.com
6. JS by Jessica Oscar Pumps www.dsw.com
7. Twisted Neck Exposed Bank Zip Top www.loftonline.com
8. Janbag Wristlet www.etsy.com

What are your go to shops for updating your wardrobe?