Friday, May 20, 2016

Friday Favorites...

Hey Girls-

Happy Friday Y'all!!!!  I don't know about you guys but this has been a crazy, busy week and I feel like I didn't get hardly anything accomplished whatsoever.  But I'm knocking off early today (shh, don't tell anyone) to head down to Charleston with the Louise to my Thelma to get a little R&R and see the super rad Chris Stapleton.  Even if it is calling for 100% chance rain, in my head "I'm so excited, I'm so excited"---sung by the infamous Jesse Spano from the band Hot Sundae.  Y'all remember that episode?  Still one of my faves. 


Anywhoodle, I'm linking up with the lovely Andrea, Erika and Erika to discuss some of my favorites from this past week.

Alright girls, let's party and get right into it because....

ONE: 
I received a new letter last night from my Compassion International child.  My sweet girl, Charleny, turns 6 on June 10th.  I am absolutely in love with her and my heart just bursts every time I receive a sweet note in the mail.  In this letter, she shared all of her favorite things: pizza, dogs, going to church and the color pink.  Oh be still my heart!!!  She is totally my match made in heaven!  She drew a picture of her family (mom, dad, her brother and herself) along with a building that I assume is her home with trees and pink flowers.  What I wouldn't give to give her a big hug!  And I just might get the chance to do that this Fall through a mission trip my church is going on.  Please pray for me and this opportunity.  More to come on this later!  But in the meantime, if you are open to sponsoring a child yourself, I strongly encourage you to do so.  There are so many waiting children in so many different countries who need your love, prayers and support.  You can check it out here.

 
TWO:
This week I've felt like a pretty powerful woman! 

No particular reason why but I surround myself with smart, successful, beautiful women who are all inspirations in different ways.  I spent 12 years in the male dominated world of power equipment selling chainsaws, lawnmowers, trimmers, etc. and endured more there than any woman should ever have to in a working environment but I stuck it out because I knew what I wanted to be and where I wanted to go and my integrity and grit always came out on top.  I worked for a company where my boss was a complete butthole and felt superior to every single person he came across, especially women,  but I swallowed my pride and kept my mouth shut hoping it would all be a learning experience and even though I lost that job, I wouldn't change a thing.   Because where I'm at today is a place I'm proud to be--not just where I work but who I've become professionally.  I've worked so hard to get to where I am at today and I am really proud of myself.  I wish all women would build each other up instead of tearing them down.  I witness horrible bashings everyday on social media, especially on IG and even on blogs I follow by truly exceptional women.  We are all amazing, beautiful creatures in the eyes of HIM.

THREE:
I am the meme Queen.  My girlfriends and I send memes and funny quotes back and forth all day long.  I literally spend most of my day laughing out loud.  These are two of my favorites from the week--and sorry for the language.

FOUR:
This was my favorite snack of the week, although I just had it last night for the first time.  I'll definitely have it again.  Yumm-O!  I did add about half a pack of Splenda to sweeten it up.  But it certainly hit the spot for me wanting to have something sweet and not break my good eating habits for the day!

FIVE:
Have y'all heard of the 'I Love the 90's Tour'?  Well, it's touring all over this year and this diva here is going to it this September with my sister and a bunch of gal pals in Charlotte.  OMGeeeee!  I can't even wait!  I was a 90's teenager and all of these bands just bring back so many memories. 



Well, on the way home this afternoon from a friend's house, this little jam came on and I forgot how much I loved it.
 But if I'm being completely honest, I am most excited about this guy here.  No judgment because I know y'all are feeling it too!


Alright gals, that's all I have for today.  Plus, how can I end with anything else other the real VIP, Vanilla Ice.  I am super proud of myself that I blogged everyday this week, even though for some reason it shows I have two posts for Tuesday.  I hope y'all have the best weekend ever!  See you on Monday..quite possibly for a Charleston recap!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Currently....

Hey Girls-

Today, I'm linking up with the lovely Vanessa and Penny for 'Thinking Out Loud Thursday'. 

 
But first, I want to thank y'all for hanging in there with me over the last couple days of some throw back posts from earlier in the year!  I couldn't not blog about them because they were so much fun and included two of my most favorite cities ever--Nashville & Charleston.  Outside of filling y'all in on what's been going on in my dating life (you'll definitely want to be around for that one), I am really all caught up with big past things to blog about which leads me to today.

Well, let's get into it...here's what's going on Currently...in my life right now.
  • Reading...I just picked up Emily Maynard's book 'I Said Yes: My Story of Heartbreak, Redemption, and True Love' last week.  I haven't started it yet but heard it's a great read.  Can't wait to get started.
  • Watching....Just finished Scandal (insert tears and sadness for the season being over), Below Deck Mediterranean, Southern Charm, The Middle and I watch episodes every single night of the Golden Girls that comes on from 11-1 during the week on the Hallmark Channel (312 if you have DirecTv) .  Wowza on Scandal this season, right?  Oh my word, I can't wait for it to come back on.  I love The Middle.  If you aren't familiar, it is a show with Patricia Heaton that is about a middle class family just making it work in a small town in Indiana.  It reminds me a lot of the show Roseanne (which I also love BTW) and that makes sense because it was created by the same writers, which I didn't know until I Wiki'd it while writing this.  Y'all know about my obsession with Southern Charm, especially after yesterday's post so I won't go into that except to say that you totally should be watching it and you'll thank me later.  Below Deck is a newer obsession for me although I watched the other seasons of it before.  This season is based in the Mediterranean and features a whole new crew except for yummy, Ben the chef, whose quirkiness, spiky hair and distinct laugh get my mojo flowing.  Oh and he's English too and I am certainly a sucker for a hot accent.  I'd let this Chef make me eggs any day of the week ;) 
    But the best new addition to this season is by far the scrumptious Bobby.  Bobby is a native of Chicago but is now a firefighter in FL.  He is tall, has tattoos and beautiful teeth---pretty much fits my bill of goods.  He's new to the yachting industry but who really cares about any of that.  Bobby is fine!  Girls, take a look at this tall glass of water.  HELLO BOBBY! 

    
    Cleaned up on the left---although I prefer him sans shirt and I think you'll agree with me from the below pics.

    
    Here I am picturing him say, "Hey Jenny, girl come give me some sugar"

    I don't even care if he can play---just stand there and look pretty.

    
    So I chose this picture for two reasons---1) because he looks delicous and 2) can you see the guy wearing the thong in the background?  HA!!!

    
    Obviously a formal occasion given the bow tie but I'll have whatever he is serving.

    I'm not typically a fan of the male bathroom selfie---but who really cares when you are this delicious?!?

  • Trying...travel more, hang out with my friends more, love myself more, relax more, get dressed more (I work from home so this is a challenge, especially when I'm not traveling for my job) and pray more. 
  • Drinking...water and lots of it.  My goal is a gallon a day.  Do y'all know what a gallon a day will do for you?  Clearer skin, helping digestion, keeps you fuller, helps keep the toxins out, etc.  Know what I just heard?  Blah blah blah blah--almost worse than Charlie Brown's teacher.  Only thing I can think about is the millions of time I have to pee a day and all the dang toilet paper I am going through.  Yes, I know---#firstworldproblems.  I started my new lifestyle eating plan over 6 weeks ago.  As of Tuesday, I am down almost 19 pounds.  With that being said, my eating out has changed drastically but what's even worse is my cocktail consumption.  Now don't get me wrong, I'm sure my liver is happy for the break but all I've had is 2-Tito's on the rocks and that was to celebrate my birthday.  This wino and 'bring on the bubbly' gal is going into some serious withdrawal. 
  • Cooking...everything!  Since I started the above plan I have been out very little for dinner...which honestly makes me kind of boring right now.  It will all be well worth it when my new svelte body breaks out of this fluffy one. 
  • Eating...a lot of eggs, Boars Head Honey Maple turkey (which is delish), cheese sticks, cauliflower rice, chicken, shrimp--anything that is clean and good for you. 
  • Pinning...record stuff, as in vinyl.  I got a record player for my birthday and I just purchased a cabinet from Target to house my player and records I already have.  Everything is going in my front sitting room that never gets used so I am trying to find some music quotes that I can frame to go around my cabinet.  I'm also pinning stuff for the only blank wall in my downstairs living room.  I've been in my house for over 2 years now and this is the one blank canvas I still have that I just haven't been able to decide what to do with it.  Oh, and if you are on Pinterest and aren't following me, you can find me @jennifermo.  I think next week I might give y'all a tour of my home so you can get a better idea of my style and offer me up some thoughts and suggestions.
    What it looks like now...
    What I'm liking so far...
  • Going...Charleston this weekend with my gal pal Pamela to see Chris Stapleton.  We booked a condo on Air BnB in Folly Beach.  The weather is not looking too great but any day in Charleston is a better day than at home--even if it's raining.  I'm in my slow time for travel with my job until August so it's important for me to get out as much as I can because being home for too many days in a row gets to me.   
  • Loving...Harris Teeter online shopping.  This may be the best thing that's come into my life this year.  I do mostly online shopping in every other aspect of my life.  My UPS driver and I are on first name basis because he is delivering something from Amazon Prime several times a week.  But I had never really gotten into grocery shopping online.  It is the best thing for my lifestyle and time management plus it makes my new eating plan much easier because I am not tempted to go down the chip aisle and pick up foods not good for me. 
  • Hating...that I have ZERO artistic ability, like I can't even draw a box straight.  I'm working on a project for a customer and had to send my marketing team an idea of what I'm thinking.  They laughed...really laughed at how horrible my draft was.  Good thing I that's not my job!  :)
  • Feeling...just a tiny bit overwhelmed that I just turned 38 and I'm still single.  We'll talk more about this next week when I catch y'all up on what's been going on in my dating life and why I'm really only just a tiny bit overwhelmed and not a whole lot. 
  • Discovering...how much I like cauliflower rice.  I detest cauliflower.  However I've developed a taste for the grated version of it.  I posted a recipe on Monday here sharing my version of a Chinese classic that won't linger on your hips.
  • Thinking...that this is my new favorite place in my house to wind down.  This is the sitting area in my bedroom.  I'll be completely honest that I really have never used it at all.  I spend most of my time downstairs.  But this past weekend, I found myself perfectly content being nestled up under blankets reading, writing my blog, watching a little TV all in this little nook. 
  • Thanking...God for my tribe so very much.  I'm going to be posting about my experience with the Evolution of Friendships next week but what I've got going on right now is exactly what I need.  They love me, support me, encourage me and so much more but also are straight with me telling me what I need to hear even if I don't want to hear it.  What do you like best about your tribe? 
  • Smelling...flowers from Trader Joe's every week.  I love fresh flowers.  They just make me happy.  And they are so cheap--this entire bundle was $12.
  • Waiting...for the new movie 'Me Before You'.  It comes out on June 3rd.  Have y'all seen the trailer for it yet?  If not, you can check it out here.  I am a total sucker for romance novels, movies, etc.  No wonder I can't find a man to live up to my standards ;)  But I want to read the book beforehand and Amazon has the paperback version for less than $7. 
  • Considering...doing this for my 40th birthday...which will be here before I know it.  I saw this on FB yesterday.  Have y'all seen this before or anything like this?  I think it is pure genius.  And Bravo to you Serina--Happy Birthday! 
  • Finishing...a delicious cup of coffee in my hand and moving onto another.  Because of my low carb/low sugar plan I am on right now I had to switch some things up when it comes to my coffee.  Let's be real here, I love coffee for the creamer and my normal creamer has too many calories and sugar.  My gal pal Jess recommended Califia Farms Almond Creamer but I discovered Silk's new Caramel creamer on my last Harris Teeter online order and scooped it up.  Y'all, it is the bomb.com!  I sprinkle a couple dashes of cinnamon in it too and I don't miss the stuff I used to use.
     
Alright gals, now you are all caught up (for the most part) on what's going on in my life currently.  Hope y'all have a super fantastic Thursday.  Come back tomorrow when I'll be sharing my Friday Favorites linking up with some amazing bloggers that I just adore.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Happy New Year's--Charleston Style

Hey Girls-

Happy New Year!  Yes, I know it's May but since I took my blogatus, I haven't told y'all about what I did to ring in 2016.  But let me first say---"Wooooooo".  If you don't know who this is or what that means, we may not be able to be friends anymore.  Just Kidding, kind of, but not really ;)   Ric Flair lives in my native Charlotte area so it's a bit exciting when you see him out and about.  Now this is a judgment free zone, so don't judge me when I say this but I grew up in the day of wrestling (often known as rastlin' by many Southerners-not this one BTW) and watching Saturday morning GLOW and my favorites of Ric Flair and the Rock 'n Roll Express. 


Oh, and just in case you didn't know what 'GLOW' wrestling was (which is Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling)...here you go.  You are welcome ;)

OK, now what were we talking about?  That's right, NYE!  So, I'm not typically the person that goes out on NYE.  I'm usually doing something low key like hanging out at somebody's house, at a small party or bar but nothing really extravagant or planned.  But this year (or rather last year) I had nothing, absolutely nothing, planned at all and actually feared being at home watching Ryan Seacrest by myself.  But my bestie Pamela came to the rescue and suggested we take a last minute trip to Charleston---one of my other favorite cities---to ring in the new year Southern style.  And that's just what we did.
 

We really didn't have much of an agenda once we arrived--just to explore and eat and drink our way through Charleston in 24 hours.  We were super lucky to have found a hotel last minute right in downtown Charleston so after we made it in, we went right back out in search of some oysters.  I had been to Hyman's Seafood before and they didn't have a wait so it was our place to be.
After enjoying a few cocktails and feasting on oysters, crab cakes and hush puppies (oh be still my clogging artery heart), we ventured out to walk off some calories and do some retail therapy.  I love downtown Charleston.  The shops, the history, the beautiful homes, the salt air--ah, so perfect. 

Before we left I made it our mission to find a place for dinner NYE which wasn't an easy task considering I was calling on December 30th.  I found a few places and made reservations at all of them so we could decide once we got down there.  Lucky for me, we settled on Sermet's (a restaurant owned by JD Madison who is part of the cast of my guiltiest of guilty pleasure, 'Southern Charm'). 
This is JD--you'll see more of him later.
So, again, we were lucky enough to find a hotel last minute but here's where our lucky streak really started.  I started checking out some other options for dinner.  But I really wanted the chance to see some of the cast from 'Southern Charm'.  JD's restaurant Sermet has a jazz bar upstairs called 'The Mezz'.  They were having a NYE special including dinner, a band, dancing, all you can drink champagne or wine and big toast at the strike of midnight all for $200.  I didn't think we'd have a single chance of getting in but after a lot of persistence Pamela managed to get us 2 seats at their bar for 10pm.  I was super psyched.  Our original reservations were at 6:30 and we weren't really sure what we were going to do after dinner which probably wouldn't have lasted more than a couple of hours and we definitely didn't want to be snoozing by 11---especially because we were in Charleston.  So, what did we do next?  We took about a 4 hour nap ;)  Hey, we're getting older and beauty sleep is precious, valuable time.

We opted to take a pedicab to get to the restaurant because we were both in heels and the sidewalks aren't very forgiving for walking on 4" sticks.  First of many fantastic ideas for the nights. 
 

We got to 'The Mezz' in a jiffy minute and were whisked upstairs to take our seats.  It's a smaller venue that was very comfy cozy.  They had a dance floor, a fantastic band and there were about a dozen tables with only about 100 or so people.  Quite the intimate affair!   It was selfie central plus we were both having great hair nights.  Our bartender hooked us up right away with a couple glasses of bubbly and our night had officially started.

After ordering our meal, our bartender (who BTW was adorably cute but also young enough to be my kid) was chatting it up with us and asked if we had ever watched the show 'Southern Charm' because several of the cast members were enjoying their NYE there and had a table in the corner.  I totally acted completely oblivious to ever watching the show but I was secretly squealing on the inside (and outside when he walked away).  I didn't want to be one of those crazy star struck fans that made a fool out of themselves.  Literally minutes later, the hostess came and told us that they had a cancellation and asked if we wanted to sit at a table shared with another group of people.  Um, let me think about that ma'am---hells to the yeah I do!  Again...our luck was getting better as the night progressed.  And it got instantly better when she sat us next to the main table of JD Madison (Southern Charm cast member and owner of Sermet's/The Mezz), his family and friends and Kathryn (Southern Charm cast member).  I nearly fell on the floor!  Pamela couldn't help but laugh at me because of how cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs I had become in a matter of seconds walking across the restaurant floor. 
Let the fun begin!

So in my obvious fan stupor, the next few pictures I tried to take incognito.  This is JD and Kathryn.


Again, this is one of my favorite shows.  I watch it religiously every week.  I've never been a super big fan of Kathryn's and unfortunately NYE night didn't change that for me.  She just wasn't friendly not one single bit.  But hey, maybe she just wasn't having a good night--we all have bad days I suppose.

OK, now that I got that all out of my system, let me talk about our awesome new tablemates.  They were so much fun and we had the best time getting to know them.  They were local Charlestonians and honestly it felt like we had known them forever by the end of the night.  You'll definitely see that in the last of the pictures.

Dinner was amazing but I couldn't find any of those pictures but I did find pics of the most important part of that meal which was the dessert--although we were so stuffed we could barely eat it, we did manage to bust out a red velvet cake toast.

 Alright, enough of the chit chat---here's how the rest of the night went.  I'll fill in on the most important parts.
 



 



 
 JD was so gracious to the crowd, thanking them so much for spending their evening with him and his family and friends.  It was very heartfelt.  He then went around to every single table and personally shook hands and chatted with every single person there.  Which makes me love him even more---and his Southern accent-OMGeeee!

 
This handsome man is JD's dad.  He danced with every girl at our table and was the quintessential Southern gentleman but I believe he was kind of sweet of our young tablemate. 
Alright, let's get down to the most exciting part of the evening.  The party was officially over at 1 but our table had been chatting and dancing with most of JD's family and friends the majority of the evening.  The band stopped playing but they turned on Pandora, waiters started cleaning up and we were all dancing and drinking straight out of the champagne bottle.  It was just our two tables left standing--everyone else had left.  When the staff turned on the lights, JD yelled at them to turn them off because we were still partying.  Around 2:30 and after too many bottles of champagne to drink Pamela and I said our goodnights and goodbyes to what was by far the best NYE celebration I've ever had.

 
This was the last picture of the night back at the hotel--feet hurting, makeup sweated off, Spanx feeling a little too tight but still the biggest smiles on our faces (well that and a little leftover table confetti)!  Oh what an amazing time! 

 
Next morning, we woke up sans hangover and declared that 2016 was going to be the year of the champagne--and so far it has been.  We packed up our stuff and set out in search of the perfect brunch spot before heading back to Charlotte.  Our luck continued on as we just beat the big brunch crowd and scored the most perfect porch seats at 'Poogan's Porch'.  If you are ever in Charleston you must try this place!  It is amaze-balls!!!!
I kept the bubbly flowing for brunch!  It was a New Year's Resolution.
Y'all I'm not even kidding on how good this food was.  I had the chicken and waffles that had a blueberry texas pete syrup.  It was stupid good!!!
And girls, that was Charleston in 24 hours.  On the way home, we turned up the tunes and danced like we were 'In Da Club' already making plans for NYE 2016.
OK y'all, thanks for hanging in there for my last two throw back posts!  Tomorrow I'm going to bring it back to the present and fill you in on what I'm doing "Currently...".  Be sure to come back!