Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Rant and Rave

For all those familiar with Columbia we have a phenomenal city paper called The Free Times and from what I’ve hear about other city papers around the state this one is the best. They have a very entertaining section called Rant and Rave where people can write in and say pretty much whatever they want. Since I have a bunch of random thoughts that I’d like to share I thoughts I’d try out their format.

Rant – We had some beautiful weather the last couple weeks. I mean it was “Bring out the shorts and sunscreen and start filling out your vacation requests for the first trip to the beach” kind of weather. However starting over the weekend it became rain and COLD! What??? No! You can't tease us with great weather and then take it away. Hopefully it’ll change back soon.

Rave – I took a random trip to Marshalls during lunch yesterday and found the most fabulous pair of shoes! They are beigey-pinky with an iridescent shine to them. I have been looking for a neutral shoe for a while and I just happened to stumble over these. And the Marshalls prices are oh so wonderful. I also found a couple rugs that I’m thinking about for the Charlotte living room. Our walls are a bright garnet, they were like that before we moved in, and the couches are green so I need something to tie all the colors together. What do you think? Rant – I’ve been watching America’s Next Great Restaurant lately and I love all the people who have healthy fast food concepts. I was trying to figure out what I should pick up for lunch today and I had a really hard time thinking of something flavorful but good for me to pick up. Step up Columbia, I can only go to Garden Bistro so many times a week before they start to look at me funny.

Rave and Rant – If you don’t already know I’m kind of a book fanatic. I have a million books on my shelves that I haven’t gotten around to reading yet but if I step into a book store I can’t help but purchase a couple new ones. I’ve been good lately and hadn’t stopped by ‘just to browse’ for a while, however yesterday I needed a greeting card and stopped by Books a Million because it was most convenient. Well this is what happened! The rant is totally my fault though.
To rap up everything I have neither and rant or rave but just something random. I was walking through World Market the other day and I spotted these little treats. They are caramel popcorn shaped into corn on the cobs. How cute?!?! I just thought it was clever. Anyone throwing a farm themed party?

I had THE MOMENT!!!!

That’s right, I had THE moment and found my wedding dress!

I was so frustrated and confused after my first day of dress shopping. There wasn’t one dress that I didn’t want to change something about and nothing seemed like ‘me’. I wanted that moment where the bride just knows it’s the perfect dress that they show during the Say Yes to the Dress show. Both sales girls kept telling me that not everyone has the emotional moment where they burst into tears and just know it’s their dress. I’ve known girls who just went “Yep this is my dress” and that was it. But let’s face it, I’m a sentimental soul. I wanted that moment, plus I wanted the knowledge that no matter what dress I might see I knew the dress I picked was the one for me. Why couldn’t I find it? (I realize that this was a little intense and dramatic considering I had spent all of one day trying on dresses but whatever it was frustrating.)

I had a friend suggest I try a bridal shop in Greenville, SC. I was going up for a wedding shower for my fabulous friend Whit (YAY!) anyway so I made an appointment for earlier that day. Mom and I drove in the pouring rain to Greenville. It’s hard to feel like you are going to find your perfect dress when you feel like a drown animal but my consultant was really nice and listened to what I had pictured for myself and made us feel comfortable and special. I tried on two beautiful gowns but still wanted to change tons of stuff about each one. Oh no, not again. Then I slipped on the third dress and I knew it was the one as soon as I looked in the mirror. (And so did my Mom, which really sealed the deal.) I loved everything about it, even the details I wasn’t sure about and I didn’t want to take the dress off. I tried on one other dress just to make sure and only had it on for about 30 seconds. I didn’t want to try on anything else. I had found my dress!

So now I have to figure out how to wait a year before showing everyone my dress. It’s going to be tough. The sweet lady at the store actually told me that I could come up to the store and ‘visit’ the dress anytime while waiting the FIVE months before mine comes in. So if anyone wants to take trips to Greenville with me let me know. I have a feeling that nice lady will regret the offer. I didn't try on anywhere close to 100 dresses but I understand where this girl is coming from.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Biggest Shopping Trip Ever

Just a quick post to let you know that I finally went wedding dress shopping for the first time this week. Yay! I'm not sure if I found my dress yet or not. I know a ton of girls 'just know' but I'm super picky and I want to be absolutely sure so I'm going to continue to shop around until I'm 100% sure. I will say that shopping for a wedding dress is totally different than shopping for anything else. You can go in thinking you know exactly what you want and then everything gets changed around once you see it on yourself. Plus there is the pressure that this dress with be documented for forever and ever so it darn well better be fabulous.

Clearly I'm not going to post pictures of myself in any dresses because I want the dress to be a surprise for the groom and our guests. Here are some dress
es that are definitely not my dress thought.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Forecast for Columbia - Purple Rain

I’ve been a bad blogger and haven’t posted anything for a whole week. But it’s not my fault! Things have been crazy and I’ve really haven’t had time to do anything extracurricular this week. I think everyone is super busy at the moment so I’m not even going to try to compare. I have been collecting some cool random stuff I’d like to share so here we go.

First and foremost, Prince will be here tonight. I’ve heard that no matter if you are a Prince fan or not he puts on one of the best concerts you will ever see so I’m totally excited to see it. Bring on the Purple Rain because Columbia is pumped!
If you have ever been to Columbia, SC for St. Patrick’s Day you know the craziness that happens down in 5 Points. It’s a mass of drinking, food, and music which equals a college student’s heaven. Well this year I got to experience a totally different part of the day, the parade! The office had a float and needed an extra hand so I walked down Devine Street with the best of them and handed out strands of beads which people seem to love at any age. The coolest parts were the huge balloons we had made to promote our upcoming Cirque du Soleil show. They were awesome!I’ve found my new favorite show – America’s Next Great Restaurant. A bunch of real people with new fast food concepts battle it out for investors to back this ideas and put them on the map. I’ve only seen the first episode but it looks pretty good and it is all about the American Dream.I’m not going to say much about March Madness simply because my bracket is going down the drain at top speed and I’m not happy about it. However I did pass this awesome drink display in the grocery store and thought I’d share. It’s made out of Sunkist, Coca-Cola, and Coke Zero. Impressive! My last, and totally random, discovery is the new Heinz ketchup packs. Have ya’ll seen these things? They are awesome. You can open them two different ways. If you want to spread it you open the top, if you want to dip something you open the packet from the bottom. As a preferred dipper I am a huge fan of having the choice. I know, random.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Monday Again!

I don’t understand how the days during the week go so slowly and then the weekend goes by in a flash. I mean it didn’t help that we actually lost an hour on Sunday. Everyone loves day-light saving time when we get to fall back but man it messes me up when we have to ‘spring’ forward. I honestly sometimes feel cheated out of that hour, specifically in the morning when my alarm goes off at what feels like an hour earlier.

Okay enough complaining and now some gushing over how much I love Charlotte, NC. Of course I didn’t take a single picture of my own so you will have to bear with me with ‘borrowed, with credit’ pictures. Ace and I tried some of Charlotte’s staple restaurants this weekend. First came Big Daddy’s Burger Bar and it was AMAZING! Think Red Robin but local and better. I know, it’s hard to believe but everything from the burgers (I had a Chicken Burger Club, Ace had a Western Burger which was actually buffalo), to the sides (nothing is better than sweet potato fries and tater tots), to the shakes and cool random stuff on the walls were great and I’m kind of wishing I could go back today. Second was Mac’s Speed Stop BBQ. It is an honest to goodness biker bar with great pulled pork and generous portions. They had a couple different sauces, which I really appreciate since which kind of sauce you like all depends on where you are from. I’m from South Carolina so I like sweet or mustard base sauces. Ace liked them all. We give both places two thumbs up and would suggest that you put them on your list of places to eat the next time you are in Charlotte. Also to work off a smidgen of what we ate we wondered around Greenville Park which was really pretty and has lots of curvy paths to get lost on.
On a completely different note here is what I'm reading right now.
- My Life in France by: Julia Child. For anyone who has seen the movie Julie and Julia this is the book in which all the parts about Julia’s life was taken from. It’s interesting to see how an American icon came to be. Mrs. Child never had dreams of being famous really, she learned to cook as a form of entertainment while living in France and that is what this book is about. - Here Comes the Bride by: Whitney Lyles. Again I have an excuse to read wedding themed books. How else am I going to prepare myself for all the crazy things that could, but hopefully won’t, happen?- Cooking for Mr. Right by: Susan Volland. I just started this one but it seems really cute. It’s light hearted and easy to read. I’ll keep you updated on what I think as I get a little further along.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

My Shows

Generally speaking I don’t watch a lot of TV. Not because I don’t like it, but usually because I’m working during primetime/evenings. However through the wonderful-ness that is the internet I can become addicted to the shows that are out there just like everyone else. I’ve got my lineup and even though I usually watch them a couple days after they actually air I enjoy them immensely.

The Bachelor – Okay I figured I’d get my dirt pleasure out of the way first. I had no intention of watching this season, and ignored the first four or five episodes, but everyone around me was watching it and then discussing it, and this includes a bunch of guys. So I broke down and watched a bunch of them to see what the fuss was about. Of course now I’m totally into it. I’m rooting for Emily because who can resist a good southern girl?
Modern Family – I love this show. It’s hilarious and I like how they address so many different issues in a way that everyone can relate to. I have laughed so hard I’ve cried during this show. If you haven’t seen it yet go on right now and watch a couple episodes. It’s that good. Mr. Sunshine – I want to love this show for many reasons. First, because the whole show is about working in arenas and well that’s what I do, duh. I’ve talk to a bunch of coworkers and other people who work in the business and we all really want to love the show but we are having trouble just watching it from an entertainment perspective, we all critic it. For example, in the first episode they have the Circus there the day after an ice show. That would never happen because the shows appeal to the same patron demographic and the revenues would suffer. Plus an elephant would never be walking around loose in the arena. I guess this is what it feels like watching Grey’s Anatomy if you are a doctor or nurse. The second reason I want to love this show is because I’m a FRIENDS lover and I want Chandler Bing to do well. The show is having some trouble flowing but hopefully those are just growing pains. I’ve still got my fingers crossed for it. Glee – I can’t help it. This show is just so entertaining to me. The music, the dance numbers, the trivial high school problems, the fact that I want everything Emma Pillsbury wears, it’s all great. I realize you either seem to love the show or hate it but I love it. The Best Thing I Ever Ate – It’s a Food Network show where all the cooking personalities get together and say the best BLANK they ever had and where to get it. I keep finding that I want to keep a list of everything and try them myself. Unfortunately the only item that I’ve ever seen mentioned from South Carolina was by Elton Brown and his love of Cosmic Hotdogs at Jack's Cosmic Dog in Mt. Pleasant, SC. The next time I’m down that way I’ll definitely make a pit stop there.
P.S. Did some research and I’m totally wrong, there have been a couple South Carolina shout outs on the show. Duke's Bar B-Que in Orangeburg, SC as well as Hominy Grill, Magnolias, and FIG in Charleston, SC have all been mentioned.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

More of My Favorite Things

I’ve got a couple new favorites this month so here you go and I encourage you to try them too!

Place to Eat – I have had little bites of the Forest Acres well kept secret that is Happy CafĂ© but I’ve never had a full on lunch. I was over in the neighborhood around lunchtime today so I decide to stop by and order their famous Chicken Barbeque over Salad. Holy moly, it was SOOOO good! The BBQ was sweet and addictive, just like I like it. The salad came with a creamy dill dressing, and there are few spices I like better than dill. To top it off they added a generous helping of sunflower seeds that added a really nice salty, crunchy aspect to the dish. I was sad that they didn’t have any of their caramel cake because I’ve heard that is to die for too. Oh well, I obviously have to go back. Who wants to go with me?Book – I’ve heard so many people talk about reading The Help but I just hadn’t gotten to it yet. Well I picked it up this week and I can’t put it down. It’s about three different women making their way through the Civil Rights movement in Jackson, Mississippi. I’m really enjoying it and I would recommend it to everyone. I also heard they made a movie of the book and it will come out in August. Cool Gadget – I saw the Shark Garment Care Steamer in the store and I’m dying to hear if it works as well as it looks. I’m a compulsive ironer and I hate it when something is wrinkled, especially when I don’t have time to iron it out. If anyone has one of these let me know what you think?Product – Okay I’ve been using this for years but it’s awesome. If you have flimsy or brittle nails, or just need a fabulous clear or top coat this is your nail polish. I usually throw on two coats and I’m ready to go for at least a week and a half.
Well those are my thoughts for the moment.
Have a great rest of the weekend!

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Here is proof of two things.

Proof Number One: Someone loves me because they ordered my favorite Girl Scout cookies for me when I didn’t think we were going to get any this year.Proof Number Two: Boys don’t think about the connection between trying on wedding dresses and the fact that I would probably try to eat the entire box of cookies in one night.
P.S. I restrained myself and didn’t eat the whole box, just a good portion of it. ;)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Yay for WED-nesday!

Okay so this is easily my favorite day of the week to blog. As you can see from the past blog entries this is the only consistent day I’ve been blogging. I think no matter who the girl is, if they are planning a wedding that becomes your go to topic.

I think the first thing most people ask me is “What are your colors”? I think this is funny. I guess I always figured people would ask about the where before the details, but whatever. It actually makes me a little nervous to come out and say what my colors are because they have changed so much in years past. So I will precede the following announcement with a warning that they may change and as a woman I reserve the right to change my mind any darn time I want to! That being said I’m OBSESSED with cobalt and white at the moment. See what you think:

I am writing this down because later on in life when I don’t stare at my ring 24/7 I want to remember these events. I’m sure many girls get tons of compliments on their engagement rings. I mean come on, what’s there not to like? Jewelry, good! Romance, great! Shiny sparkly gem, fabulous! But I literally have strangers asking to get a better look at my ring. First it happened in Charlotte. I was sitting by myself, don’t make fun, at a Charlotte Bobcats game and a woman and her friend needed to get passed me in the aisle. I slid my legs over and she stops while I’m in this crazy position and goes “OMG I love your ring”. Now granted I had had the ring for like three weeks at this point so it was still new and arena lights make it sparkle like crazy. Then last weekend I went to a baseball game (Gamecocks won!) and the random lady sitting next to me leaned over and told me how much she loved my ring. How sweet! I adore my ring but it’s always nice to hear that other people seem to like it too.

Ok, one last wedding thing. My favorite Charleston wedding blog has expanded to Charlotte! They feature absolutely stunning weddings all around town. I have serious wedding envy!

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