Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Hump Day Happenings: 6.8.16

Happy things around the web to get you through that middle day of the week!

Ain't Yo' Mama's Campfire:  This looks like something I'm doing this weekend. Tonight. 

Give it Some Thought: Why exercise is a higher priority than my career. 

Can't Help Myself. I'm a sucker for a good party shot

Election 2016. Well, I know who I'm voting for. 

Snacks on Snacks on Snacks. My current snack obsession. 

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

A Very Charlotte Weekend

I travel for a living. 

I trek all across this great country throughout the year racking up frequent flier miles, seeing the sites, tasting the food and snapping instagram pics along the way. And mostly on weekends. 

So, when I get to be home for a weekend, I relish in it. 

This weekend, while everyone was at the beach, or partaking in some fabulous vacation, I chose (slash had to work) to stay here in the great city of Charlotte. 

So, what did I do? 

I took advantage of the lack of folks / bounty of OpenTable reservations and tried out some hotspots. 

Comida: The land of small tacos and Margarita Snocones. Yes, please. 

Kindred. Ok, not QUITE Charlotte (Davidson), but close enough. This is a definite MUST TRY. Small plates, great craft cocktails and a cheese tray to die for. 

CO. This has become one of my new go-to's since it's right in my neighborhood. Located at Park Road Shopping Center, this Pan-Asian restaurant combines DELICIOUS pho with reasonable prices. And they are SUPER accommodating to gluten allergies. Pho ga & summer rolls are my favorite. 

Foxcroft Wine Co. Combine a great patio with string lights, super knowledgable staff and bounties of wine, and you get the new(ish) location of Foxcroft Wine Co., off East Blvd. Harley was in search of a wine from Burgundy (aren't we bougie) and the staff came armed with some great recs. 

I invested in some learning time. 
Skillpop: I took a Skillpop class to learn about the basics of podcasting (hint: stay tuned!). If you haven't taken a Skillpop class, it's a must. Haley and team put together AFFORDABLE classes to help you learn how to do anything from Handlettering to public speaking. 

Forest Hill Church. I love this church. I've been going here since I moved to Charlotte in 2009, and am consistently blown away by the generosity, realness and truth that is in this church. Led by David Chadwick (former UNC basketball player. Whoop), it's truly a special community to be part of! 

                                                         Photo Cred: Forest Hill Church

I got outside. 
Spent some quality time in my little garden. 

Freedom Park. Headed to the park for a jaunt around the pond. There was literally 10 people in the park. 

Charlotte Regional Farmers Market. Went to the Farmers Market to get $10 bouquets of flowers (it's a STEAL) and some fresh, local produce. 

The Dog Photog. Yes, yes. I am that person who does not have children yet, but gets photos taken of her dog. This weekend, the Dog Photog had a special session that they took photos of your dog at Atherton Market with peanut butter on their nose. Let's just say the ol' Tedster was less than thrilled. But cute photos nonetheless! 

And yes, I went to Charlotte Motor Speedway. 
But no, I didn't funnel any Bud Heavy

Granted, I work in NASCAR, it's one of the biggest weekends of the year for NASCAR in Charlotte. If you have never been to a race, you should definitely check it out when the series comes back in October (and the race is shorter). 

How did you spend your holiday weekend? 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Hump day Happenings: 5.25.16

It's another edition of Hump Day Happenings. 
Happy things around the web to get you through that middle day of the week!

NOM NOM. Can we just talk about THIS flourless banana bread?

A little more human. This college professor is awesome. He posted a resume of all of his failures. A reminder that everyone's life isn't perfect. Even if Instagram makes us think it is. 

Get off your butt. This awesome 100-year old woman on exercising. Still. If she can, you can. 

Let's GO! Top AIRBNB rentals in Europe for under $200. Uh, no brainer. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

You’re not going to like what I have to say about Beyoncé.

Brace yourselves. 

You’re not going to like what I have to say about Beyoncé.


Don't get me wrong. I think she’s fabulous. I think her music is awesome and digs at the deepest depths of my soul in one moment and in the next makes me want to practice my {albeit bad} dance moves in front of a mirror wearing a leotard and heels taller than I'd ever walk out of my house in. 

But folks, I hate to break this to you. We’ve been lied to.

No, this is not about Becky with the Good Hair or Jay Z’s alleged infidelities (a rapper? No. Never).

This is the notion that is displayed on t-shirts and instagram posts and this water bottle.

“We have the same amount of hours in the day as Beyoncé.”

Yes. I can count. Yes, I know she’s pretty powerful, but not quite God.

But we’re fed the notion that Beyoncé has the same number of hours that you and me and the mailman and your granny have.

Scientifically, yes. 24=24.

But how many photos have you seen Beyoncé strolling the aisles of the grocery store trying to throw together a meal that doesn’t consist of microwavable meals or Chipotle leftovers?

Or how many photos of Beyoncé do you see her scrambling out the door, trying to do her makeup in the car because she’s late to a meeting because her dog decided to finally catch that bird in your backyard leaving you to clean up the mess?

Or how many photos of Beyoncé do you see her spending hours in an office doing something that you don’t quite love, in an office with no windows, with people that you can’t really stand, all to earn a paycheck to spend $$$ on her concert ticket?

We don’t. Because Beyonce may have 24 hours. But she also has a hair stylist. A nanny. Someone to do her grocery shopping for her. A manager. Someone who handles her travel. A driver. A chef.

The list goes on and on.

I’m not hatin’. Believe me, if I could have someone to style my mane everyday rather than throwing in some dry shampoo and hairspray, I would. But I can’t (at least not yet...#goals!).

Those 24 hours in a day I have are precious. And tediously scheduled. I have 24 hours to exercise my body, spend quiet time in the Word, try to eat somewhat healthy, bust my butt to do the best that I can in my job, engage with my friends, nurture my relationship with my boyfriend, leave my house at least once (work from home hardships), stay in touch with my family, walk my dog, clean my house, down some vino because why the heck not?, LIVE a little, and maybe, just maybe, do my own hair.

Queen Bey is living life seemingly on top of the world right now. But as we look at the life that she projects, and the life that we are constantly told "Well, if she can do it, so can we." 

But before you go out and spend a fortune on a personal trainer and a stylist and a 24/7 uber driver, do this. 

Give yourself a bit of grace.

Nothing is as easy as it looks. Just think about it, Britney Spears was on top of the world once. And then this happened. 

She has her struggles, I'm sure. But she also has a lot of paid help. A lot. 

So next time you think about how much she "has" and "does" (OR ANYONE for that matter), give yourself a little kick in the butt and do the hard stuff, learn through doing it yourself, be grateful for where you are at. 

And be grateful Britney grew her hair back. And she's a bit less crazy these days. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

that time it took months to write 250 words : perfectionism.

I’m not even going to lie.
I’ve been trying to write this post for hours. days. months. 

Months, y'all. 


It’s not like this is a Pulitzer Prize winning post. It doesn’t tackle hard things like hunger / cancer / how to drink your coffee black.

It’s a simple post about perfectionism.

It’s the reason that I haven’t posted a blog post in months.

It’s the thing that holds me (and many of you, I imagine) from doing what you really want to do.

Some people see perfectionism as a positive. Others use it as a stock answer for “What’s your greatest weakness” in interviews. My thought: OH, you’re a perfectionist? Then why did you have 23 grammatical errors in your resume…but that's another post for another dya. 

But the sheer notion of “not having it all together” or “not being good / funny / perfect” enough, simply holds me back from doing what I really want.

In recent days, I’ve been urged by several friends and family to get back to blogging.

The initial criticism in my head began: "it’s been too long." "No one really cares."  "You have nothing to write about." 

I began digging into why I began this in the first place: Life is short. There’s too much good in this world to let little things hold us back. I like it. I want it. WHY THE HECK NOT go after it.

So… this is my commitment. To do what I want to do. When I want to do it. And not let the negativity in the world and in my mind hold me back from living this life to the "fullest"... however I imagine that to be. 

Because, perfection is not the answer. I'd much rather have a messy, ridiculous, imperfect life, than one that is "perfect" in someone else's life. Why the heck not?  

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Hump Day Happenings: 1.20

It's another edition of Hump Day Happenings. 
Happy things around the web to get you through that middle day of the week!

Accessorize. Functional and cute tassel key chain. With charging cable for iPhone. Stop. 

Just Because. Champagne and Confetti. Literally. 

Decor. Cork Bowls. All the rage. 

Travel Bug. 27 Life Chaining trips to take in your 20s. 

Say What. Dress Yoga Pants. Not sure how I feel about this. 

Monday, January 4, 2016

DIY Cocktail Competition - Finale

Welcome to Part Two of My Family Has to Drink to Be Around Each Out for Long Periods of Time the DIY Cocktail Competition Finale. 

Last week, I shared that one of my favorite new traditions is to gather a group of people and let them run wild with creating a Cocktail Competition. (Read Part I here -- free printables and directions) 

Feliz Navidad 
2 oz. Tequila 
1 oz. Orange Liquor
Splash Cranberry Juice
Splash of Lemonade 
Dash of  Orange Bitters
Dash of Aromatic Bitters

Christmas Dream 
2 oz. Bourbon
Splash of Apple Cider
Splash of Orange Juice
Dash of homemade simple syrup (Water, sugar, clove and nutmeg)

7 Apple Fizz
3oz. Segrems 7 Apple
Splash Cranberry Ginger Ale
Throw in 2 Apple Fizz Candies at the end for presentation

Chapel Hill Ice Water
1 oz. Vodka
1 oz. Gin
1 oz. Triple Sec
Lime Juice 
Topped with Sprite

... And the winner is...
Christmas Apple Pie
Makers 46 (Entire Bottle). 
Apple cider
Entire apple pie (pureed and blended) 
Cooked in a crockpot overnight
Topped with Cranberry Ginger Ale 

The Christmas Apple Pie BARELY squeaked by, but the originality of the drink (AN ENTIRE APPLE PIE IN A BLENDER!) carried it through. 

As Master of Ceremonies, I created a trophy that will be passed down through the generations by taking an old margarita glass and spray painting it gold. (Cheap and easy!) 

And then filled it with what else... liquor!
Have you ever hosted a Cocktail Competition? Have any other recipes to share?