Monday, July 28, 2014

Time to Tallboy Up

I'm mildly annoyed with myself for doing these "OMG weekend recap!!11!" posts (almost as annoyed as I am with using song lyrics in the titles) but ... this one ... it has to be recapped.

#becauseKIDFREE, y'all. 

Actually, I was only kid free Thursday and Friday nights. But still. It was kind of amazing for me. And the kids got to spend quality time with their dad - at Holiday World, no less. A win/ win. 

I went to the grocery store and liquor store (essentials, y'all) pretty much as soon as the kids left. I had an evening of "strip and go naked," buffalo ranch dip, and Pinterest planned. That lasted approximately an hour before Kendra called me and was all, "you're coming over here." So I ended up sitting on her patio rather than mine. There was poker and Blue Moon and I woke up Friday with a hangover. That's how you know you've had a damn good thirsty Thursday, my friends. 

Also? Waking up with a hangover and no kids? Living.the.dream. 

Friday night was a bonfire and Bud Light and a truck tailgate and Luke Bryan and four wheelers and homemade moonshine. 

I woke up Saturday morning with approximately 80 million mosquito bites, my children back home, and the reminder that I'm not in my 20's anymore. 

Seriously. Most true e-card ever. Friday night was spent getting redneck fabulous with 20-something's and I woke up Saturday feeling every single one of my 34 years ... and someone else's 34 years as well.  Also? Homemade moonshine -- homemade stuff that burns blue when poured on a fire ("hey y'all! Watch this!") -- is pretty much never a good idea. Seriously, I've never felt more "Tennessee" in the nearly five years I've been here. 

Saturday was spent scratching mosquito bites, reminding myself that I'm just as close to 50 as I am to 18, and hearing all about the kids' trip with their dad. In other words: I only got out of bed to replenish my glass of water. Never felt so much like I'd won at life ...


The kids and I finally headed downtown to check out the new Beale Street Landing. I was initially unimpressed but it grew in me. I'll write more about it sometime this week or next. We ended up having a pretty great time. Sometimes it can be a lot of fun being a tourist in your (adopted) hometown. Especially when you talk to actual tourists from places like Norway and Minnesota and they're dying in the heat and you're all like, "really? This is so much cooler than it normally is." 

Pretty good Sunday Funday. Pretty good weekend! 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Flying Fish

Apparently they have Flying Fish locations in Tennessee, Texas, and Arkansas, all places where I've lived.  Yet, this past weekend was the first time I had ever eaten at one.  Foodie Fail.

I love seafood and I had heard really good things about Flying Fish.  My friend and I decided to eat there before the Redbirds game over the weekend.

For starters, the place gives off a total dive-ish vibe.  I love dives!  You stand in line and go to the counter to order.  You can pick your bottled beer from coolers right by the register.  I'm kind of torn on how I feel about this.  Since it was my first time, I kinda sorta would've liked being able to sit down and pour over the menu while waiting on a waiter to take our order.  No big deal, though, not really.

I waffled back and forth on what to get.  I thought about the fish tacos but knew I would want them grilled and, really, who goes into a seafood place and doesn't order any manner of all things fried?  I also thought about the crawfish po' boy but, I mean, it was Memphis and not New Orleans and I was afraid I'd leave disappointed and slightly heartbroken over a mediocre po' boy.  In the end, I chose to play it safe and went with the six jumbo shrimp.

Don't play it safe, people.

I mean, it's not that the food was bad or anything. It was downtown Memphis -- you'd be pressed to actually find BAD food.  It just . . . it wasn't, like, the best shrimp I've ever had in all my life.  The fries, however, were surprisingly good. I say surprisingly because when I first looked at my plate I thought they resembled frozen french fries I could make at home on my own time and for a fraction of the price.

My biggest complaint is that there was no ketchup on the table.  Look, if you're going to run a restaraunt in the south that specializes in all things fried AND you're not going to employ an actual wait staff then you PUT KETCHUP ON THE TABLE.  This is Tennessee for crying out loud.  We like our ketchup on our fried shit, ya dig?

All in all, I wasn't overly impressed with Flying Fish.  However, I WOULD give it another try.  I would definitely order something different (probably that crawfish po' boy.)  My friend had the red snapper and said it was very good and the red beans and rice just made the meal.  So I'm going to err on the side of the fact that I just ordered the wrong thing.  Here's hoping the next visit will be more of a "so THAT is why everyone is crazy about this place" type of thing.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Thursday Things

1) You know what's awesome? Two whole nights, house allllll to myself. Kids are going out of town with their dad and I cannot wait (he usually spends his time with them while I'm out -- I'm never, ever, ever in the house all alone.) Seriously, imma drink wine and binge watch netflix and EAT FOOD I DO NOT HAVE TO SHARE. Ahhh.

2) I made these quinoa stuffed peppers the other night and they were soooo good. 

I cooked the quinoa then stirred in black beans, a tiny bit of taco seasoning, and some salsa verde. Put the mixture into pepper halves, topped with cheese, and baked at 350 for 25 minutes. Seriously. So good. 

3) I'm going to Nashville in a couple weeks -- I'll only be there for two days but it's my first kid-free trip there (well, there was one other but it doesn't count because we stayed in the 'burbs, ate at Applebee's, you get the picture.) So I'm obviously really excited and researching places to go and things to do. There is SO MUCH in Nashville. I only live three hours away so I need to make it a point to get there more often. To stock up on cookie butter if nothing else. 

4) My friend Becky is also going to Nashville and will follow me back to Memphis to spend a few more days hanging out! So I'm doubly excited -- I get a couple days in Nashville then get to show one of my girls around Memphis as well. Bex has been here before but only overnight. This time I'll be able to take her to see and do more of the city. 

5) I register my boys for school next Tuesday. I was researching what I need to bring to register them and stumbled across the fact that their school district is now offering free meals - breakfast and lunch - to every single child regardless of income. Um, hello, this is AWESOME!  I still need to get all the facts but provided it's all on the up and up, it'll save me about $100 a month. Not a huge amount of money but still . . .

6) I forgot to mention the shopping deal I got a few weeks ago. I went to Sears (because I'm 60) to find a pair of denim capris. They had a pair originally $38 marked down to $11. When I went pay for them, the lady asked for my email address and told me I had $7 in rewards and "would I like to use those?" Um, yeah! $38 pants for $4. I'll take it. 

And, no, they were not Kardashian Kollection. Thank ya very much. 

7) I LOVE Buzzfeed. It's like my #1 time waster.  I'm such a sucker for those things like "texts from parents" and "these people are the reason we can't have nice things" lists. 


8) My friend posted this on Facebook the other day. And I died. 

9) Song love:

10) Were truer words ever spoken?


Tuesday, July 22, 2014


All Sass
I felt awful the other night.  One of those nights where I just wanted to lay in bed and binge on the ID channel and not do anything, not have anyone need me.

Karis cuddled in my bed beside me.  She ran her fingers through my hair.  And she said, "Mommy.  You so pwetty!  You so you-tee-ful, Mommy!"

Four is easily my favorite age for my girl so far. Not because she compliments me. I know she only said that because she hears it from me all.the.time. Four is just ... she's turning into a little girl. She's developing her own little personality all while still wanting to be a whole lot just like her mommy.

It's flattering and humbling and a little scary.

I never wear my hair in a traditional ponytail.  When I pull it up, I tuck the longer hair through and sport a little "poof" type thing (so sorry, so not up on the latest hair trend related words.)  She now wants her hair done just like that a majority of the time.

She wants to wear my clothes and my shoes and when I'm putting on makeup I have to do a cursory swipe over her face.  She doesn't want to leave the house without lip gloss.

She claims she loves iced "copy" (coffee) and insists on sips of Coke Zero because, you know, if Mommy likes it then she's going to like it too.

But she's also ... she's Karis. She has her own district personality and likes and dislikes. And sometimes it can drive me crazy but mostly it just makes me all warm and fuzzy to watch her becoming who she is. To wonder if who she is at four -- nurturing and sweet and always the first to comfort someone -- is a glimpse of the person she'll one day grow up to be. Who knows.

Right now we're just (mostly*) loving the Fours. 

* Mostly because you KNOW the asshole moments abound. Like waking up at 5:15 this morning and poking me in the face until I agrees to turn Spongebob on. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Here's to the Ice You Float Your Beer In ...

File this one under: weirdest summer weekend ever. Weirdest because this weather, y'all! 
Friday:Okay, so let's talk Friday. The temperature barely got out of the SIXTIES. In Memphis. In July. So not kidding. So still can't believe it. And, yeah, completely changed plans. The kids and I didn't spend the day at Beale Street Landing and didn't spend the evening having a Walker Family Pool Party (in the baby pool, naturally.)

My friend was going to come over Friday evening and I was going to introduce her to Coors Light Summer Brew (it's my summer jaaaam!) She ended up having something come up so my night was me and the Coors Light aaaand ...

Introducing my kids to the movie Big!
Still one of my faves from the 80's. And my boys totally loved it. (And when it got to the part where Josh and Susan kiss, Kyan said "I canNOT watch his." The part where she takes her shirt off? "Ew! Gross! Oh my gawww, he TOUCHED HER BOOB. That is DISGUSTING.") And we've decided we MUST take a trip to NYC so they can play Chopsticks on the giant piano at FAO Schwartz. 

Also. This happened Friday night:

I posted my 2000th Instagram. And it was of beer. Because OF COURSE. Obviously, I had to record it via screenshot for all posterity.

You guysssss. I got to go to a Redbirds game WITHOUT MY KIDS. I know, right? Dinner at Flying Fish before the game and then we got to the park to realize it was a Double Header. Winning! So we got to catch two seven-inning games. (Well, sorta.  We missed the first half of the first game.)  The Redbirds won both, there were a couple home runs, and my friend caught a t-shirt that I took home and J claimed for himself:
Photobomb courtesy of Kyan
Also, the temperature was in the 70's for the game. It was blissful. Perfect baseball weather. And I know I keep harping on it but, seriously, that's just NOT Memphis  in July. I didn't even sweat! At all!  I WENT TO A BALLGAME IN JULY AND THERE WAS NO SWAMP ASS.  Write this down, y'all!

We slept until 10:30. 10:30!! I can't even tell you the last time that happened. So, obviously, I should've known something was up. Karis felt a little feverish and quickly fell back to sleep for a couple more hours. When she woke up, she seemed to be feeling better but I thought it would still be best to Sunday Funday at home. 

Not gonna lie: this is one of my favorite things ever. Just hanging in the backyard -- beer in hand -- on a lazy Sunday. Unfortunately, the flies seem to be enjoying the milder weather (85 yesterday! Mild for July but, like, 20 degrees warmer than Friday) too and drove us inside after about an hour or so. I swear, I fail at summer. 85 and I spent most of it inside clipping coupons?

This picture just says SUMMER.  I mean, water guns and ice cream cone?
Also. K's face?!?
That was our weekend.  Another summer weekend in the books.  The boys start school in . . . ready for this? . . . TWO WEEKS.  I can't even.  Looks like we'll spend the next fourteen days trying  to soak up as much summer fun as possible.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Thursday Things

1) Al Roker reporting in: the weather has been downright unheard of the past couple days. I stepped outside yesterday morning and it felt more like early fall than mid-July. It's nice being able to have my windows down and sunroof open. And I love not having to worry about my face melting off. But what does this mean for winter?!? I'm scurred just thinking about it.

2) I walked at Shelby Farms yesterday evening and saw this on the trail:

He let us get fairly close, never ran away, and actually posed and put on for us.

3) I'm going to Nashville three weeks from today.  I've only been to Nashville once without kids so I'm really looking forward to this trip!  I've been pinning different things to do while I'm there.  And guess what?  There is a CHUY'S in Nash (yeah, yeah it's a chain but I LOVE it and if they can have one 200 miles away in Nashville then they can go right on ahead and bring one to Memphis too.  Ditto Trader Joe's.)

4) My brother and his family stopped by here last week on their way to Texas.  That meant more time for the kids to spend with their cousins.  It's hard to believe that it was just two years ago that Karis didn't want anything to do with B at all.  Those two played and played and played.

5) My boys start school in just a little over two weeks. This summer has gone by so fast! I'm kind of enjoying the fact that this school year, we have no "big deals." Meaning no one is starting kindergarten. Just first and second grades and they already know what to expect. Kyan has expressed a little bit of nervousness but I know once he gets past the first day he'll be fine. 

6) Can we talk about coffee for a minute? Y'all. I really need to attempt to understand the Starbucks fascination so many people have. I mean, I'll have one occasionally (if I'm in Target or it's the only coffee place around.) But I'm a Dunkin devotee. It's just as good and way cheaper (99 cent iced coffee after noon -- holla!) And I recently tried a McDonald's iced sugar free French vanilla. MCDONALDS. It's way cheaper than Starbucks and that shit was delicious. 

7) Love watching the All Star game every year and commercials like this always give me the warm fuzzies:

8) My girl throws a fit every time I try to so much as touch a comb to her hair. The other day, however, she sat so nicely and let her brother (Vidal SaJaidan) brush and play with her hair for a good half hour. Dubs.Tee.Eff. 
The finished product and the stylist
9) Weekend plans: introducing Kendra to the Coors summer brew (that's my jaaaam) and maybe some summer shandy, Redbirds game, and possibly a Sunday Funday: spray park style. 

10) I didn't choose it. It chose me. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Of Baseball and Boys

I love baseball. 

I love it because it's baseball and I love it because it's SO American and I love how quintessentially summer it is. There are not many things in the world better than a warm night, a cold beer, and a baseball game. 

Obviously, when I found out I was having boys, I was very excited to introduce them to love of all sports. Baseball included of course. 
This is the first year that J has really been into any kind of sport. And while it seems as though basketball will be his first love, he is enjoying baseball as well. 

And last night he watched - and paid attention to - the All Star game with me for the first time. 


We cheered for Jeter and talked RBI's and snacked on Cracker Jacks. And it was a Moment and something I hope we share for many years to come. Maybe one of these days his brother (and sister!) will want to join us for more than a photo op.  Because, really, introducing your children to things you love . . . it's such a fun thing.

P.S.  This?  Perfection.
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