Friday, August 27, 2010

Eye Candy

I've been playing with PSE lately, and thought I'd share a few photos just for the heck of it. 

Texas Landscaping... 

Pink ginger flowers - I'm not usually a fan of pink, but these are so striking!

The Texas State Capitol building

And our favorite Fort Worth burger dive - Fred's Texas Cafe

Me & my honey at a baseball game

Please ignore the bags under my eyes... it was a long weekend!
More bags. 
Still me. 

And what I know you've really been waiting for, a pug pic. 
Ms. Audrey, and her friend, the Hair on Her Nose

It's Friday - enjoy your new day! 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


I have a confession. 

Don't most of the fun blog posts start out with that sentence?

The drama. 

The suspense. 

The urge to lean closer to your screen and read the latest scoop. 

It's killing you, right? 

You HAVE to know? 

OKOK! I'll tell ya.

I am addicted to getting manicures and pedicures. 

I know, I know. You didn't expect ME to confess to such a girlie sort of thing.

Why does this confession matter to you? Let me share something with you.

My pedicures last 2-3 weeks. 
Manicures on the other hand last maybe 3 days. MAYBE. 
Does that sound familiar? 
If so, read on brave reader!

I went to the salon for my usual mani/pedi, just hoping that my manicure would last for 5 days. 

And that's when it happened.

ok, maybe life changing is a little too dramatic.
I had somehow managed to not bite nor break my (finger)nails
and they had grown out to a nice length.
The bossy bitch My favorite manicurist suggested that I should Shellac my nails.

Yeah. I asked the same thing! 
What the heck is shellac?? 

Well, dear readers, lean closer and let me tell ya alllll about it. 
It's magic.
It's beauty.
It doesn't destroy your natural nails.

And unlike regular manicures/polish, it lasts 2 weeks. 

CND has come up with a shellac hybrid nail color.  It's UV cured, similar to solar/gel nails.

It's a professional nail service for the salons, but I don't know why you couldn't order the materials and do your own, including a UV lamp.

So she talked me into trying it, and (if you couldn't tell) I'm a convert. 

I went for the french manicure style - nude nail with a white tip. 
And I kid you not - it looks 
But thinner. 
And as I said before - it didn't ruin  my natural nails like solar nails would.

It goes on like polish, 
the only difference being each hand spends 2 minutes in the UV lamp to cure in between layers. 
There's the base coat, polish, and a top coat. 

And it does last 14 days. 
15 actually. 
At that point, I needed to get them redone for my own sanity. 
I'm a little OCD about picking at my nails. 

Here's the pictoral proof: 
Day 2 - Beeeee-yooooo-teeee-ful!
Day 5 - no breaks, no chips, still glassy!

Day 11 - normal nail growth, some tip wear, and a little bit of peel on my pinkie fingers. 
Still no breaks!

Day 14 - you can see the nail growth, and the pinkie finger is peeling a little more. 
The bottom is starting to peel slightly where the nail is growing. 
I will say that the removal process was the typical soak-in-acetone process, which I loathe. It only took a few minutes, and the gel was easily pushed off with an orange nail stick.

CND does offer nail removal wraps, which only put the acetone on the nail, not the entire finger tip. The price is around $3 for 10. As cheap as acetone is, I'm not sure it's worth the price of the wrap to avoid the soak.

So let's review: 
1. Lasts 14 days (check!)
2. Doesn't ruin the underlying nail (check!)
3. Beautiful nails (check!)
4. Goes on like polish (check!)
5. Alternative to solar nails (check!)

The cost for a basic manicure at my salon is $14
and the cost for shellac is $30 - twice as much.
However, the $30 is comparable to a fill of solar nails (without ruining my natural nails). 

I don't think Shellac is for everyone. 
Budget for one reason. 
I do think it's a GREAT alternative to solar nails, 
if you're willing to invest the time and money to maintain them (similar to solar nails)

I got my nails shellac'd again last night. I'm addicted. 

Enjoy your new day! 

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Hoo Are You Tuesday

Yep - it's that time again!!!!

Grab a linkie thing and play along with Leslie at Night Owl Crafting
No crafting experience required!


1. Do you prefer to write in cursive or print?
My handwriting is like spanglish - a mix of cursive and print. My signature - while a font - is pretty indicative of what my handwriting looks like. Just neater. And legible.

2. Do you prefer to shop online or go out and actually go to the stores?
There are some things I prefer to buy in person - clothes, shoes, etc.
Mostly I prefer to avoid the crowds, and price compare online.
Although I'm waiting for my first order from Zappos to be delivered today.
I ordered a pair of shoes to try out for my trip to Europe next year.
I'm hoping they aren't hideous in parson, and are very comfortable.
Don't worry. I'll keep you posted. Shoe watch 2010 in effect!
3. Would you prefer to go camping or stay in a motel?
hahaha hohoho hehehe
erm, hotel. no question about it.
I've been lucky to stay in some really nice hotels.
There was this one the Victoria-Jungfrau in Interlaken, Switzerland (my all time favorite!)
I couldn't get pictures, but please, click on the link and enjoy their slideshow.
We visited in winter, and the thing I remember the most was the heated tiles in the entryway and the bathroom. *divine*

I loved the cliffs and the ocean below. A beautiful vista to wake up to every morning.

Oh, and I can't forget the St. Regis in Aspen, CO
Talk about beautiful surroundings!!!

So yeah, I'm spoiled by hotels.

4. Do your prefer going to the movies or staying home to watch one?
I prefer going to the theater.
But I hate paying the prices for a ticket,
so I will only see movies that I really, REALLY want to see in the theater.
Or movies that my boyf really, REALLY wants to see.
Like Inception.
Please, tell me you've seen Inception.
Well maybe not ever, but it's way, way up there!!

5. Do you prefer a shower or a bath?
Nothing beats a hot bath for relaxing and taking away the stress of the day.
I especially love a hot bath with a Lush Bath Bomb.
Sakura is my favorite
Followed by Avobath 
And Blackberry
And Waving not Drowning

Okok, I love almost all of Lush's bath bombs.

During the winter especially, I'll take a shower in the morning, and a bath before bed at night.
Now you know my little secret.

So, Hoo are you?

Enjoy your new day!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Austin is Delicious

We had two wonderful dinners while in Austin.
The first was at Manuel's on Congress

We started off with ceviche

Which was really good.
Lots of flavor from the pico, fresh fish.

Except - someone needs to tell Texas restaurants that ceviche isn't supposed to be cooked.
I'm not sure why they can't grasp this concept.

Steve had a Yellow Fin Tuna Steak on a bed of garlic spinach.

Flavorful, fresh, and soooo good!!

I went a little more traditional Tex-Mex
Chicken enchiladas with mole sauce

Uh huh. It was that good!

and then there was this:

Cucumber lime martini, with a pepper rim.

The pepper was a bit strong for me, but the martini was light and refreshing, not too sweet.

Our second dining stop was even more memorable: Perla's.

We saw the show, and unlike Tony, we decided to make reservations.

And boy am I glad we did!!
Fresh seafood, in central Texas.
I loved the decor of this place - it screams beach cottage to me.
Light and airy

Relaxed and cozy

Aren't the woven shades divine?

And the yellow and the aqua really pop.

Fresh flowers on the tables, and scattered around the restaurant

And the food.


They bring out a bowl of hush puppies to munch on.
I could eat a dozen.
(I think I might have actually).

I couldn't resist the calamari
It was served with the traditional marinara, and a jalapeno sauce.
The jalapeno sauce was delish - not spicy at all.

It was light, and some of the best calamari I've ever had!!

Steve ordered the sirloin with a lobster & crab citrus salad

I tried the salad, and it was so refreshing. Mmmmmmmmm!!

I ordered the pan seared grouper
It's served with grilled lemon and tomato

Goodness gracious alive - this was some of the best fish I've ever had!

The dessert menu was equally delightful.
Unfortunately we were stuffed.

Maybe it was the dozen hushpuppies.

If you're ever in Austin, check out these places.
Two forks up from me!!

Enjoy your new day!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Hoo Are You Tuesday

It's another Tuesday - already!!!!

Time is flying by, and the kids are headed back to school soon.

If you want to play along, head on over to Night Owl Crafting and link up!


Here are this week's questions:
1. What is your favorite flavor?
Gah - this is a tough one. I love sweet, sour, and salty!!
If I have to choose, I'd say garlic.
I can't cook without my garlic.

2. What was or is your favorite subject in school?
In high school the class I enjoyed the most was acting.
Unfortunately I didn't discover this until my junior year,
and it conflicted with the timeslot for a required course my senior year.

In college my favorite class was sailing.
Yes, you read that right - I got college credit for sailing around a lake 2 days a week.
The tests were just killer (NOT!)

Two other college courses I enjoyed:
Theater (watching plays, not acting in them), and Oceanography.

3. What are some of your hobbies?
I do craft, although I haven't done much lately.
I also volunteer with DFW Pug Rescue
And I enjoy cooking.  

4. Do you prefer fruits or vegetables?
Fruits, for sure!
Cantalopes and bananas are my favorites.

5. What color of eyes do you have?
Ho-hum hazel

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Austin is Weird...

...and proud of it! 

Austin doesn't really "belong" in Texas.

It's a mix of old...

the old-fashioned

...and new.

Full of feisty characters...

And unique sites.

From SoCo

to the batty pursuits

or is that the pursuit of bats? 
(okok - I couldn't capture a shot of a bat, but they were there, I promise!)

it's urban...


 (that would be a cucumber-lime martini)

and the food is out of this world! 

And yet, you never forget that you are still in Texas! 

Stay tuned for more of our adventures in Austin!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Hoo Are You Tuesday

I've missed the last 3 Tuesdays b/c I've been doing the road warrior travel thing for work.

If you'd like to play along, visit Leslie at Night Owl Crafting
Don't worry, you don't have to be a crafter to participate!


Let's get crack-a-lackin with these week's questions:

1. What are some of your favorite summer activities?
I'll be honest here - in the summer, my main goal is to hide from the heat.
That means going to the movies where the AC is set to "freeze", enjoying ice cream and popsicles,
and well - staying inside.
Not very inspiring huh?
It's the reality of life in Texas in June-July-August.
We're on week 2 of 100+ degree days...

oh, look - a cold front. It'll only be 97 next Monday

2. What is your favorite flower?
I love stargazer lilies. They smell soooo pretty.
I confess that I also love roses.
As evidenced by the fact that my BF will surprise me with them
on occassions like my birthday and Valentines day.

doncha love my fireplace screen?? It just screams "TEXAS" doesn't it?
I digress.

3. What is your favorite meal of the day?
All of them.
I tried to think of a more clever answer, but that's the reality.

4. How much time do you spend on the computer each day?
Too much.
Seriously - way too much.
An average of 9 hours for work (sometimes more).
Maybe 2-3 more for fun - that's split between my current obsession with Sims3, my photos, and doing some volunteer work for DFW Pug Rescue.

PSA: anyone want to adopt a pug?
We have some wonderful babies in rescue right now - ready for their forever home!!

5. Do you have any pets?
I have a small herd of pugs
Jessie - she's 6 now, and the sweetest girl.
She's an OCD licker and a bit of a worry wart.  
She's definitely my girl - she doesn't let me out of her sight.
Angel is my old lady - she's now 13ish, and was my first rescue from DFW Pug Rescue
Angel is blind, and has heart failure to boot.
She's doing ok despite her health conditions, but I know she won't be with us forever.
Oh, and she's the alpha dog of the pack. A benevolent soul!
Then there's Bello. He's 5, and he was my 2nd rescue from DFW Pug Rescue.
He's got one heck of a smile!
Bello is a very silly dog, and loves to make people laugh.
He's also a very sweet boy, who loves to get (and give!) kisses.
But he's a poop eater, so you probably won't want him to give you many kisses.
You're welcome.
And last, but certainly not least, there's Audrey, or Dre as we call her.
She's 5, and a retired beauty queen.
And yes, she knows she's pretty. Little snot.
She cuddles and give kisses on her terms only.
I like to torment her by holding her still and giving her lots of kisses.
She turns her face away from me and pulls away.
It cracks me up!
The puglets brighten my day in so many ways.
They make me laugh, sometimes they make me cry.
And then they start snoring in the middle of a conference call.
Or better yet, barking at a bird/the garbage truck/mailman outside.
And so it goes.
I remind myself each morning...
It's a new day!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Shoes, Glorious Shoes!

This may come as a complete shock to you.

Brace yourself.

I'm addicted to shoes.

There! I've said it!

Whew, what a relief to have it out in the open.

It was such a burden.

Well not really. They just take up a ton of space in my closet.
And in the floor of my bedroom.

Hey now, I said I had a problem, right?

Anyway...because shoes make me happy, today's post is dedicated to the shoes I am currently coveting.

Who can resist? Red. patent. leather. *dreamy sigh*

*completely irrational sigh*
Why irrational?
a) I don't can't wear heels. For more than 10 minutes anyway.
b) the strap would slice off my plump cankles and make my legs look even more stubby than they are.
c) plum? is a plum shoe really rational?
(it's ok, I don't mind coveting from afar)

Contestant #3: Naot Footwear Trendy

And this is the part where I reveal yet another confession.
I have an obsession with Mary Jane shoes.
SHOES people!
(not the mary-wanna thing)

If I were to count the Mary Jane shoes in my closet I'm sure it'd be a substantial portion of my collection.
I won't count them though.
I don't really want to know.

I'm not sure how and why the Mary Jane shoe obsession began.
I just know that when I see a Mary Jane style, my head snaps around and my hands reach out to carress it.

Now, I don't have a picture of the pair I really, really want. I've coveted these boots for like, 6 years now.
Here's a fab pic of ML Leddy's shop courtesty of Hamilton Shirt Company's site:

Imagine the colors, the stitching, the cut outs. And the leather.

Breathe it in...

Only, it's another irrational thing.
I don't wear cowboy (cowgirl!) boots anymore.
Shacking up with a city boy who hates country music and is allergic to all livestock really cuts out the opportunities to put on my best boots and pocket-less jeans to go boot scootin' or rodeo-in'.

Okok. onto our next contestant!

#5. Now these babies will take your breath away.

Are you sure?


I kid! I kid!

(my crocs are red.)

(and Mary Janes.)

he he he
ho ho ho

I'm still laughing.

Prankster that I am.

The real contestant #5: Bass Oxfords

I just *love* the classic black and white oxford. These would be fun to wear with my dress slacks.

So why am I shoe shopping?
I'm looking for comfortable walking shoes for my trip to Europe next year.

Yes, I'm planning ahead.
And no - none of these are really good candidates for that purpose.
Well, maybe the 1st one but I'd really like a closed toe shoe to protect my tootsies.

And the 2nd one isn't too bad, though I'd probably opt for a flat vs. a pump. 

You see, I can't wear the same shoes 2 days in a row, or my feet will ache.

I need shoes with some serious comfort factor to them, and support.

And I don't want to wear sneakers that scream "AMERICAN TOURIST RIGHT HERE".

I figure the fact that I'm full figured, and say "y'all" frequently will give that away immediately.

No need to have my shoes do the talking, right?

Looks like I need to do some more shoe shopping.
Anyone want to go?
Mom? Kasie?

Enjoy your new day!