Monday, December 6, 2010

I finished!

The St. Jude Half Marathon is over! The weather could not have been any better- it was a perfect day for running! I finished in 2 hours and 5 minutes and I beat my time from last year by 2 whole minutes. :)

Here are a couple pictures from the day...

Right after I finished and received my pretty shiny finishers medal.

My sweet nephew came to cheer me on.


And my mom, sister and brother in law (behind the camera) also came to cheer me on!


Have a great week!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Girl in Motion

The St. Jude Half is this weekend! YAY! I can't believe it's finally here. I am so excited, anxious, and nervous. My training was going very well until about 7 weeks ago when I started experiencing serious knee pain after an extremely hilly 10 miler. EEK! After visiting the doc and a physical therapist, we determined it was hurting from overuse which is a very common knee injury among runners. I basically could not train for 3 weeks then I had the stomach bug for over a week so my training got put on hold for a little over a month and it was very frustrating! Being that close to the half, I didn't know if I would be too far behind to continue but I have done 2 successful long runs the past 2 weekends...WOOHOO...so I am as ready as I am going to be.

My goal this year was to kick last years time in the butt! Last year I finished 2:07 which I was very pleased with for my first half. I don't know that I will be beating that this year after my set back but completing 13.1 miles is an accomplishment in itself no matter how long it takes. :)

Please keep all the runners who will be participating in the St. Jude Marathon in your prayers this weekend! Unless you run, have run or are married to a runner, you do not understand the time and dedication it takes! I want to thank my hubby for putting up with my frustrations and worrying and obsessing over the last several weeks-- - you rock for listening to me or at least making me think you do. ;)

And what post would be complete without clothes?? If I am going be a sweaty mess when I finish the half...I at least want to be a CUTE sweaty mess.

Pullover: Nike Element 1/2 Zip- Dick's Sporting Goods
Top: Nike - Dick's Sporting Goods
Shorts: Nike Tempo Shorts- Dick's Sporting Goods
Shoes: Nike Zoom Structure- Zappos.com
Hat: Nike Running Hat- Dick's Sporting Goods

Monday, November 22, 2010

Fa la la la la

When I think about all the holiday functions I will go to this year, what first comes to mind is what I will be wearing. Duh! Like I really need an excuse to go shopping. :)

The below top from Anthropologie would be super cute with Gap's Legging Jeans in True Black.


Top: Arabesque Top from Anthropologie
Jeans: Legging Jeans in True Black from Gap
Bag: Nancy Ruffle Fringe Clutch from Melie Bianco
Pumps: Slinking Frills Pumps from Anthropologie

I am also loving the Nine to Five Glamour Skirt from Modcloth!

Top: Silky Cascade Ruffle Blouse in Caviar from the Gap
Skirt: Nine to Five Glamour Skirt from Modcloth
Shoes: Steve Madden 'Carlsen' Bootie in Black from Nordstrom
Tights: Pointelle Tights in Black from Anthropologie
Clutch: Adele Wooden Frame Clutch in Taupe from Melie Bianco
Bangle: Large Feather Bangle from Revolve Clothing
Bangle: Detailed High Polish Bangle from Forever 21

happy shopping!

Gobble Gobble

What are you in charge of bringing to your Thanksgiving Dinner? It is my year to go to my hubby's family Thanksgiving lunch and they usually have about 50 people!! YIKES! I am trying to decide what to make. I have a recipe for Gourmet Potato Casserole that is always good but as I was flipping through my new Southern Living magazine today, I came across Parmesan Corn Pudding that looks delicious AND has normal ingredients. I am thinking about trying this instead.

Ingredients

  • 2 (12-oz.) packages frozen white shoepeg corn, thawed and divided
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons plain yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 1/2 cup (2 oz.) shredded Parmesan cheese
  • Garnish: chopped fresh chives

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Place 1 package of corn and next 7 ingredients (in order listed) in a large food processor. Process until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides.

2. Transfer mixture to a large bowl; stir in chives and remaining corn. Pour mixture into a lightly greased 2-qt. baking dish; sprinkle with cheese.

3. Bake at 350° for 40 to 45 minutes or until set. Garnish, if desired.

Enjoy!


What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish or do you wish you could skip the holiday all together?! I always look forward to the dessert table. Yum.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

At Your Service Part 2 and Cream Cheese Brownies

After last weeks post I did have a request (YAY!) to create an outfit for Holiday parties. I will say this has been a little tougher than I thought because my friend, Jessica, is expecting and who knew how difficult it would be to find cute maternity clothes?? Anyway, I was definitely up for the challenge and I hope she likes it! :)


Top: www.duematernity.com Snow Print Tunic
Pants: www.motherhood.com Loved by Heidi Klum Stretch pants
Boots: www.shoes.com Chinese Laundry Women's Newbie in Cognac
Bag: www.meliebianco Gathered Satchel in Mustard
Scarf: www.piperlime.com Tinley Road Infinity Scarf in Cream
Bangles: www.loftonline.com Gold Bangle Set

I love sweets and am always looking for "lite" recipes that are actually good. I made these over the weekend and they pass the yummy taste test!


Cream Cheese Brownies from Cooking Light



Ingredients

Brownies:
Cooking Spray
1/2 C Butter, Softened
1 1/2 C sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large egg whites
1 large egg
2/3 C unsweetened cocoa
1/2 C fat-free milk
1 1/2 C all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt


Topping:
1 8 ounce black 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 14 ounce can fat-free sweetened condensed milk
1 large egg

Preparation:
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees
-Coat bottom of a 13x9-inch baking pan with cooking spray

To prepare batter, place butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until fluffy. Add sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla; beat until well blended (About 5 minutes). Add egg whites and egg, 1 at a time; beating well (mixture will appear curdled). Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; stir with a whisk. Add to cocoa mixture; beat at low speed just until blended. Spoon batter into prepared pan.

To prepare topping, place cream cheese in a large bowl and beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Gradually add cornstarch and remaining ingredients and beat until smooth. Spread evenly over batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes (mine took longer) or until set.

Enjoy!

Friday, October 22, 2010

At Your Service

I. love. shopping. Not only do I love shopping for myself, I also enjoy helping pick out clothes or outfits for friends and family. Since I have no one to use as my "project" for today, (any volunteers for future post?!?!?) I am going to put together an outfit for who ever will listen. :)

















Skirt: Quiet Approach www.anthropologie.com
Sweater: Summer's Reminder Cardi www.anthropologie.com
Bag: Tara Double Handle www.meliebianco.com
Bootie: Report 'Ariella' Bootie www.nordstrom.com
Tights: Herringbone Tights www.ae.com

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Fall Food

My favorite thing about Fall (besides Football and shopping for new clothes of course) is the Fall recipes I get to start cooking! I usually only make soups in the Fall/Winter and I really don't know why that is because they are really good any time of year. It's just hard to eat a hot bowl of soup when it's 100+ degrees outside. Maybe it's just me.
Here are two I have made recently...more to come!

The Pioneer Woman's Corn Chowder with Chilies

I made this last night, served it with sourdough bread and it was yum-y.

















2 Slices of Bacon cut in small strips
2 Tablespoons Butter
1-½ whole Yellow Onion, Diced
5 ears Corn, Shucked (about 4 Cups)
2 whole Chipotle Peppers In Adobo Sauce, Finely Diced
1 whole 4-ounce Can Diced Green Chilies
32 ounces low sodium chicken broth
1-½ cup Heavy Whipping Cream
½ teaspoons Kosher Salt (more To Taste)
3 Tablespoons Corn Meal OR Masa
¼ cups Water

Preparation Instructions
Slice the corn off the cob and set aside
Add bacon pieces and cook over medium heat for a couple minutes.
Add onion and cook for additional 4 minutes.
Add butter and melt then add corn and cook for one more minute.
Add both chilies and stir.
Pour in chicken broth and cream and add salt.
Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low.
Combine cornmeal or masa with water then pour into the chowder. Cover and cook for 15 minutes over low heat. Add more cornmeal or masa if you prefer the soup to be thicker.
Cook for additional 10 minutes them simmer over low heat until ready to serve.

Pumpkin Bread
















1 cup Crisco oil
4 eggs
2/3 cup water
2 cups pumpkin
3 1/2 cups flour
2 1/2 cups sugar
2 t baking soda
1 t nutmeg
1 t cinnamon
1/2 t salt


Preparation Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Blend together in mixer, oil, eggs, water, sugar and pumpkin.style
Mix together dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then slowly add to pumpkin mixture. Beat until well blended. Add raisins and nuts. (optional- I did not add)
Grease and flour 2 large loaf pans or several mini pans 2/3 full.Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes for large loafs and less for mini or until bread passes the clean toothpick test!

What are your favorite Fall recipes??

Friday, October 1, 2010

Cute Jackets and Banana Bread

I realized when going through my Fall clothes that I have an obsession...with jackets. I have about 10 of them in my closet now and I have not even unpacked all my clothes from last year. They are really versatile though and great for layering. I absolutely love the cooler weather but when it gets super cold, I always get annoyed when you go into a building and they have the heat cranked up to what feels like 100 degrees and you have dressed for the freezing temperatures outside and are now sweating bullets because it's so dang hot Ha.

My hubby tells me all my clothes look alike (thanks!) and I'm sure he will disagree that I need more cute little jackets but it seems that when I go in to a store they are all screaming at me to try them on...does anybody else have a problem with that?!

Below are a couple that have been calling my name and will more than likely make it into my closet this year ...



















From L to R:
1. Half Pass Jacket www.anthropologie.com
2. Military Shirt Jacket www.freepeople.com
3. Expatriate Jacket www.modcloth.com
4. Full Tweet Ahead www.modcloth.com
5. Maximum Capacity Jacket www.anthropologie.com

And-what better way to celebrate the nice Fall temps than with some super delicious unhealthy Banana Nut Bread?!

Super Yummy Banana Nut Bread
*Warning: Habit Forming

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup butter
2 cups white sugar
2 cups mashed overripe bananas
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions:
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 9x5 inch loaf pans.
-Mix flour, salt and baking soda in a large bowl. In separate bowl, mix butter and sugar until smooth. Stir in the bananas, eggs and walnuts until well blended. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture. Stir until blended. Divide batter evenly between the two loaf pans.
-Bake for 60 to 70 minutes until a knife inserted comes out clean. Cool in the pans for approx 5 minutes then turn out onto cooling rack and cool completely. Wrap in aluminum foil to keep in the moisture.

If you are like me, the delicious smell with over come you and the cool completely step with be omitted and you will have devoured about half the loaf before you are even able to get the aluminum foil out...enjoy!

Friday, September 24, 2010

TheGreatestOfTheseIsLove


Training for the St. Jude Half Marathon is in full swing and I am so looking forward to cooler weather!! Where is it?!?! It sure does not seem like Fall because Memphis has had record-breaking temperatures all week! I am up to 7 miles and it feels great to be over half way there in my training! This year I decided to do the Memphis Runners Track Club Road Race Series. Even though I run 5 to 6 times a week, recently purchased a Garmin (which I LOVE and highly recommend) and have run in countless races over the summer- I still get intimidated when I show up and see all the "serious" runners doing 1 to 3 mile WARM UPS!! Seriously...I don't consider that a warm up!

A friend and I have started a St. Jude Heroes Team to raise money and help support the research of cancer. Our team name is TheGreatestofTheseIsLove. I'm sure everyone knows someone who has been affected by cancer- it's such a horrible disease and has taken so many precious lives way too early. I would love to someday say that my fundraising efforts helped with the research that found a cure for Cancer...how awesome would that be?

I seriously hate asking people for money...BUT...if any of my 4 readers would like to make a donation (just click on team name above), then I will no longer expect you to wait in Autozone Park in the freezing cold weather to watch me cross the finish line. ;) Only exception to this is the hubby who better be there with bells on.

1 Corinthians 13:13
And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Creamy Cajun Shrimp Pasta

I made this recipe last week and it was sooo good! It's definitely going to be entered in to my recipe bank since it even scored yummy points with the hubby. It's actually "lite" which makes it even better! So easy to make and throw together for a quick meal.













Ingredients
1 cup water
1 (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
6 ounces uncooked linguine
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 (8-ounce) package presliced mushrooms
1 large red bell pepper, cut into (1/4-inch-thick) slices
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup half-and-half
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Preparation
Combine 1 cup water and broth in a medium pan; bring to a boil. Break pasta in half; add to pan. Bring mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 8 minutes. Add shrimp to pan. Cover and simmer for 3 minutes or until shrimp are done; drain.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and pepper to pan; sauté 4 minutes or until moisture evaporates. Add flour, seasoning, and salt to pan; sauté 30 seconds. Stir in half-and-half; cook 1 minute or until thick, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add pasta mixture and parsley to pan; toss.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The Good Wife

Some of you may have seen this before but I came across it today and cannot believe this was actually published in a magazine!!! The below article was featured in a 1955 Housekeeping Monthly publication.














-Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready, on time for his return. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospect of a good meal (especially his favourite dish) is part of the warm welcome needed.

-Prepare yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so you'll be refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking. He has just been with a lot of work-weary people.

-Be a little gay and a little more interesting for him. His boring day may need a lift and one of your duties is to provide it.

-Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives.

-Gather up schoolbooks, toys, paper, etc and then run a dishcloth over the tables.

-Over the cooler months of the year you should prepare and light a fire for him to unwind by. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift too. After all, catering for his comfort will provide you will immense personal satisfaction.

-Prepare the children. Take a few minutes to wash the children's hands and faces (if they are small), comb their hair and, if necessary, change their clothes. They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part. Minimise all noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of the washer, dryer, or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet.

-Be happy to see him.

-Greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please him.

-Listen to him. You may have a dozen important things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first- remember his topics of conversation are more important than yours.

-Make the evening his. Never complain if he comes home late or goes out to dinner, or other places of entertainment without you. Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his very real need to be at home and relax.

-Your goal: Try to make sure your home is a place of peace, order and tranquility, where your husband can renew himself in body and spirit.

-Don't greet him with complaints and problems.

-Don't complain if he's late home for dinner or even if he stays out all night. Count this as minor compared to what he might have gone through that day.

-Make him comfortable. Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or have him lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him.

-Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soothing and pleasant voice.

-Don't ask him questions about his actions or question his judgment or integrity. Remember, he is the master of the house and as such will always exercise his will with fairness and truthfulness. You have no right to question him.

-A good wife always knows her place.

Really? We have seriously come a long way!!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Ultimate Tailgating

I am so excited about College Football starting this week! It's a good thing I love football because if I didn't- it would not be fun at my house during football season because my hubby watches every single game that comes on...seriously. My TWO teams are Ole Miss and Tennessee. I'm not sure how good either team will be this year but am anxious to find out. I grew up being a Tennessee fan. I do still love the Vols but I have been to more Ole Miss games over the past 4 years, know all about what is going on, know players names and the positions they play, have even made two trips to Dallas, TX to cheer on the Rebels in the Cotton Bowl and have sang the Hotty Toddy countless times, so I feel like a true fan.

If you have ever been to the Grove, you know how elaborate some of the tents get. It is crazy how extreme some people are- - do you really need a chandelier and over the top centerpieces for tailgating?? Well in the Grove, you do.

Below are a couple of my favorite tailgating recipes to go along with the usual chicken fingers, barbecue, burgers and sausage and cheese plates!

Dixie Caviar
Ingredients:
2 (15.8-oz.) cans black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
2 cups frozen whole kernel corn
2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
1 medium-size green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 small sweet onion, finely chopped
4 green onions, sliced
1 to 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
1 to 2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup Italian dressing
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup sour cream
Tortilla chips
Garnish: cilantro sprig

Preparation:
1. Combine first 9 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Seal and chill 24 hours; drain. 2. Spoon mixture into a serving bowl. Stir in cilantro, and top with sour cream and cilantro. Serve with tortilla chips.
Makes 6 cups

Goat Cheese Torta
Ingredients:
16 ounces cream cheese, softened
8 ounces mild goat cheese
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 teaspoons fresh oregano, snipped or chopped
1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
1/4 cup pesto
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil
2 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted
fresh oregano
stone ground crackers or baguette, thinly sliced

Directions:
Line a 1-quart loaf or souffle pan with clear plastic wrap. In a food processor bowl or large mixer bowl, combine cream cheese, goat cheese, garlic, oregano and pepper. Process or beat with electric mixer until smooth. Spread 1/3 of the cheese mixture in the bottom of the pan. Top with pesto, spreading evenly. Layer with another 1/3 of the cheese mixture.

Drain sun-dried tomatoes, reserving one tomato for garnish. Chop remaining tomatoes. Spread chopped sun-dried tomatoes evenly over cheese mixture in pan. Top with remaining cheese mixture. Cover with plastic wrap, and press gently to pack the cheese. Chill several hours.

Uncover cheese; invert onto serving plate. Cut reserved sun-dried tomato into thin slices. Garnish with thin slices of sun-dried tomato, the toasted almonds and fresh oregano or parsley. Serve with crackers of choice!

Toffee Bars
Ingredients:
1 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 packages saltine crackers (broken)
1 (12 ounce) package milk chocolate chips
1 cup of pecans or nuts for topping


Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
2. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and grease the foil
3. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat melt butter with brown sugar; bring to a boil for 3 minutes and remove from heat.
4. Arrange crackers on the lined cookie sheet. Pour butter mixture over crackers.
5. Bake in preheated oven for 5 minutes.
6. Remove from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips over crackers and mixture. Spread chocolate over crackers as it melts. Once the crackers and mixture are covered with chocolate- add the pecans and refrigerate for 1 hour. Break into bars and enjoy!

Haystacks
Ingredients:
1 package butterscotch chips
3/4 cup peanut butter
2 small packages of chow mein noodles
1 cup miniature marshmallows

Directions:
First heat peanut butter in deep pot at medium heat. Then stir in butterscotch chips, reducing heat to low. Remove pot from burner, adding in noodles a little at a time while stirring the mixture.
Once combined, add in marshmallows (make sure mixture isn't hot or they will melt) and continue to combine all.
Once all ingredients are coated, spoon out onto wax paper and allow one hour for them to set.
Please send me your favorites-I am always up for trying new recipes!

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:

Ingredients:
* 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


Directions:
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.

Enjoy!

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?

Friday, July 30, 2010

The Cousar Casa

When Jason and I first started looking at houses, I told him my unrealistic? ideal house would: be between Yates and Perkins and Poplar and Walnut Grove, not be on a busy street, have a fenced in back yard so Bosco could run around, have big trees in the front yard, 3 (preferably 4) bedrooms with 2.5 baths, an open kitchen/living area, a formal dining room with separate breakfast area, a carport or garage, a separate laundry room...and I think that's it. Was that too much to ask?? While I didn't think I would get everything on my list I was hopeful to find in my mind a house that was close to perfect. Can you believe my hubby found a house with all of the above criteria?? Me either!! Well....it didn't have all of the criteria but it wasn't something that sledge hammers, plumbers, electricians, brick masons, painters, carpenters, knocking out walls, completely moving the kitchen, turning a closet in to a 1/2 bath and a hard working hubby couldn't do!

When I look back on how fast everything came together, I am still amazed. They (meaning the short list of people mentioned above) completely renovated our house in a mere 6 weeks.

Before and After Pictures:




This area is now the Kitchen:
Breakfast Area:

Living Room:

Hope you have a great weekend and do something to stay cool!






Thursday, July 29, 2010

Hello Blogworld...


elcome!! So, I finally caved and decided to create a blog. I absolutely love blogs about decorating, cooking, and fashion and since a lot of my friends have them I thought....why not?


Running in Stilettos....I have actually been known to do this before (successfully) and feel like the title fits my life right now because it seems that I am always running literally or figuratively.