Thursday, May 31, 2012

Blue Moon

Well, months after my first post on our mudroom plans, we are actually going to get started in a few weeks (fingers crossed). I promise to post a before picture once I move out all the boxes and stop looking like a hoarder. The room will have a wall of upper and lower cabinets, a refrigerator, and a bench seat with storage and hooks above it - all in about 50 square feet. 
Here is my inspiration board for the room. I love Farrow & Ball's Hague Blue for the cabinets. It is such an unexpected pop, and while it would be a major commitment in a kitchen, I feel like it will work for the long haul in a mudroom. Currently, the floors are some strange painted tile - painted a heinous dog doo-doo brown at that. I think this quatrefoil-style tile will make the room feel more spacious while still being easy to clean - this is a mudroom after all. And no room would be complete without my favorite fabric designer, Block & Brayer. Hollis can make a fabric from any pantone color, so the options are endless. 
Currently all of our wedding china is sitting bubble-wrapped in boxes on the floor. It feels sacrilegious. I love how organized this pull out cabinet is to hold plates and platters. I will definitely be copying this for one set of lower cabinets. And a lined drawer for silver flatware would be pret-ty lovely too... Mr. Fonty and I received his great-great grandmother's vintage Tiffany's silver, and it needs a special home. 

for pantry cabinet

Let the demolition begin!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ladies First

Dressing like a Lady, not a Tramp:


Roksanda Ilincic wool dress
$1,280 -

Shift dress
$60 -

Jimmy Choo peep toe heels
$695 -

Marc Jacobs leather satchel
$1,295 -

Dooney Bourke leather satchel
$178 -

Yves Saint Laurent chain jewelry
$1,595 -

Ginette_NY monogrammed jewelry
$1,081 -

Monogram initial necklace
$80 -

Fantasy Jewelry Box gold chain necklace
$44 -

Hermes orange scarve
$410 -

Silk scarve
$55 -

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Tunesday With George : Kalen Nash

Kalen Nash -- Ukred 

Our first Normaltown Records release is out today! (Read about Normaltown and Kalen's album HERE)

Dreams Do Come True

I wish someone had warned me that the Bachelorette would be 2 hours every week. I thought the first couple episodes was a 'getting to know the guys' thing, but no luck. This has truly become a labor of love.  
"Littlefoot, go past the mountain that looks like a Longneck and there you will find the Great Valley of dating."
Emily's first solo date was with Little Foot. She kept telling him how good looking he is. Does he look like a different person in real life? Because there is no way she is knocked over by his close-set eyes. The date was a pretty standard first date - strap yourselves into a harnesses, scale a 50 story building in a lightning storm, eat dinner and talk about marriage and babies, and have a "private" concert in a parking lot. At dinner, Emily pinned the rose to Chris' really manly baby blue henley, and the couple was off to a Charlotte parking lot to listen to country crooner, Luke Bryan, while the city watched from behind a barricade. It's here the date officially became my worst nightmare (yes, I am afraid of heights, but the entertainment took this date to new lows) as Luke Bryan sang the deep lyrics "girl you make my heart go boom, boom/dancing on the tailgate in the full moon/that kind of thing makes a man go 'mhmmm". Chris swooped in to give Emily a kiss just in time for Luke to begin his painful ballad. And the crowd went wild.
At the end of their date, Emily exclaimed: "I've never had a date like this". Oh really Emily, you haven't climbed a building to eat dinner on a rooftop, and then danced to a country singer with half your city watching you? Wow, you haven't lived.
While Emily and Littlefoot were repelling, the other guys got their date box. Tony Prince Charming got a lot of face time when the date card was announced. In reality television this is usually an indicator of that person being booted or getting the top prize. My hopes were pinned on him getting booted. 
The next day all the guys, except Kalon and Arie, meet Emily at a park. She has a football and a soccer ball for them, because dudes dig that sports stuff. Jerry Maguire sees Emily with the football and jumps on the opportunity to show off his skills, while Doug and Sean sit in the corner talking about how they don't aggressively talk to women. Travis brought is his egg, now named Shelly, and Music Mike from Austin sported a sporty half pony tail. And they're one big happy family. 
Mike, stop it with mid-head ponytails

Emily walks away for a moment leaving the guys freaking out over her absence. She returns and brings in her friends to size up the men. I bet her friends were as disappointed as I was in her pickings. Really America, this is the best you can do for women? 
The guys brought their A-game to impress Emily's friends, and of course Stevie O'Shea broke out the pop and lock. Sean didn't get a date last week, so it was good to finally meet him. And while he is scared to talk to women, he seems squeaky clean and pretty genuine. He was so nervous talking to Emily's friends, but seemed to ease up once they made him take off his shirt and do push ups (you think i'm joking, but this here is the truth) 
Just another day in the park.
One of the girls liked him so much, I think she will leave her husband for Sean if Emily dumps him. 
The dates gets even dreamier for the guys when Emily unleashes a herd of kids on them. Ryan, bored with the rug rats, interrupts girl talk and fumble big time in front of Emily's friends when he confesses that he wouldn't be attracted to her anymore if she got fat. I believe the direct quote was: "I'd still love her, but not love on her". Good work, Ryan. At the end of the play date, Sean got all the girls' votes. 
Emily then takes "her boys" to a cocktail party in Charlotte. Daddy Doug shares with Emily that he grew up in the foster care system and has a overcome a lot to make something of his life and be a contestant on the Bachelorette. But, Emily's time is taken by Tony Prince Charming who got choked up with crocodile tears talking about how much he misses his son. (He misses him so much he forgot to wear a shirt under his sweater.) They dragged out his scenes way too long. I wish I could tell you more about what he said, but I had to fast forward.

Prince Charming's plan seemed to backfire big time, because while he got more one one one time with Emily, she took this opportunity to DUMP him! It was insanely awesome. After Emily kicked the dead weight, Sweet Sean got the rose for the date, and Daddy Doug was pissed. 
Arie got the next one-on-one date. I was looking forward to this one, because I think Arie is best catch thus far. The couple goes to Doooooollywoooood! If you live in the south, you have seen the ads for the crown jewel of Pigeon Forge, TN. Christmas in Dollywood commercials are some of my favorites. This date was genius. But really, how can Emily say this is her favorite place, but have never been on a roller coaster? That is like saying you love bakeries, but have never tried a cupcake. 
The couple spends the day dancing to 3-piece jug bands and eating cotton candy. The producers then surprise Emily with a private show by Dolly Parton. Dolly wrote a special song about finding lasting love in 6 weeks on a reality television show while Arie and Emily awkwardly danced.

After their concert, the couple makes out on the carousel, and Emily is totally smitten by Arie. Winn-ah, Winn-ah, Winn-ah!
At the rose ceremony, Emily pulls Kalon aside since he didn't get a date this week. She calls Kalon a "genuine guy". I could not think of a more pretentious, non-genuine person. He cuts Emily of when she is talking, and Emily is not impressed. She coined my favorite line of the night: "I like tall, skinny and funny, but not tall, skinny and condescending". Luckily his helicopter arrival is still awing Emily and Kalon got to stay. 
Emily's friends wisely told Travis to get rid of his ostrich egg, Shelly. So he had Emily ceremoniously smash it. I wish this meant she she smashed Travis and his faux hawk's dreams of being her husband, but I'll take the baby steps.
RIP Shelly
Alessandro or Alejandro not sure which, got sent home for calling Emily's daughter a "compromise". Luckily, Arie was there to kiss away her tears. The guys saw it and freaked out. Ryan "never saw himself competing against a guy like Arie" calling him a "dainty man". I love this high school jock mentality. I bet Ryan put a lot of scrawny kids in their lockers and then chest bumped his dude friends wearing letterman jackets. 
Stevie ended up being the only guy eliminated in the rose ceremony, and I couldn't be happier. I am sure there is a Snooki at one of the bat mitzahs you DJ that will love you, Stevie. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

Forever and Always

Sabine Scherer Photography
May 28th is our first anniversary! We are celebrating at the beach with the Fonty dog in tow (obviously).

It has been a great first year of marriage filled with lots of fun, laughs and changes, lots of changes. I quit my job and started 2 small businesses, and Mr. Fonty created his own record label, Normaltown Records. Together this year, we have traveled to Turkey, Greece, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, California, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Illinois, New York, the beach, the mountains, and back home. If every year is like this one, marriage is a pretty lovely thing.
Thank you for an unforgettable first year, Mr. Fonty. I am so happy to be your Mrs!
(Our wedding is going to be featured in The Knot magazine, so I can't share any pictures. Legal Schmegal. Once it comes out I'll do a wedding post since some of you have asked)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

I Sell Seashells by the Seashore

Pinned Image
Mr. Fonty and I are off to Sea Island this weekend to celebrate our anniversary. I can't believe it's been a year already! Crazy to think about all the madness that was going on this weekend last year. I'll take a relaxing beach weekend over wedding planning.
We will be spending the weekend at the Cloister - and Mr. Fonty will be whining about wearing a suit coat to dinner. While the Cloister is the crown jewel of the island, the houses are the show stoppers. Sea Island is no quaint beach town. It is monster mansions on the water. House Beautiful featured a home designed by Pheobe Howard that managed to walk the line of beach casual and Sea Island elegance.

wicker couch in a sun room

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Tunesday with George: Warm in the Wake

Warm In The Wake -- Night Wounds
Warm In The Wake is easily one of my favorite bands I've ever worked with (back in the Livewire days of 2006-2008). After a feverish beginning that saw them release two EPs and a full length album in '07/'08, things slowed down a bit. Business, life and family circumstances intervened and kept them from being a full-time touring band. But good thing for planet earth, they are still making music together. Half of the songs on Night Wounds are left over from a 2008 album that never got finished, and the other half were recorded more recently at a farm house in Alabama. You won't read about this album in Rolling Stone, or hear it on the radio, but I guarantee it will be one of the best pieces of music released in 2012.

Goodbye, Aaron/Kyle

Backstreet's Back AL-RIGHT!
Will someone please explain to me how Emily could give Stevie O'Shea and Prince Tony Charming roses over Aaron and Kyle. Even though I thought they were the same person until Aaron wore his sexy teacher glasses, I'd take the twins over the annoying trolls any day. But, I'll rewind a bit back to the beginning...
The first date box arrives, and Ryan, who will now call Jerry Maguire because of his heinous sports agent suits, gets the first one-on-one date. The duo bakes cookies at Emily's house, because this is a totally normal first date activity. Ryan passed Emily's fierce cookie test. Emily then runs orange slices by Ricki's soccer game, but asks Jerry Maguire to stay in the car - why this snippet was included, I have no idea. ABC, we get it - Ricki is Emily's TOP priority. Emily rewards Jerry for being so patient while she passed out citrus, and takes him out to a fancy dinner where they are serenaded by Emily's "favorite band" Gloriana. Something tells me ABC got a good rate on featuring Gloriana, because not only were they a wanna be Lady Antebellum (as if the original isn't bad enough), but no one has ever heard of them. The dancing scene was made even more awkward by the elevated stage in the middle of a crowd of Charlotte pre-teens taking camera phone videos of the couple. I found one of these videos on You Tube. It's pretty incredible to see the pre-editing dance scene:

Jerry wins Emily's heart and earns himself a rose and a trip to the next round.
The group date box arrives at the house, and the guys are putting on a show with the Muppets to support Emily's wing of the pediatric ER. Stevie O'Shea wore the most offensive outfit and hat - that was turned sideways for the entire episode (see picture at the top). He should have been sent home for this alone. The performance started with a dance sequence in which Emily sort of bounced a knee with no rhythm at all. I never thought someone would make me look like a good a dancer, but Emily just may be able to do that. We can add 'no groove' to 'dumb as rocks' on her character traits. The producers this season have a sick sense of humor. Charlie with the brain injury was initially set up to do a stand up act until he had a panic attack just thinking about it. He went to talk to Emily about how he is not prepared for this since he is still regaining his ability to talk. So, instead of doing a planned stand up act, the producers blind side him and have him do an unscripted interview with Miss Piggy. It was heart wrenching. At the cast party, Emily told Little Foot that she thinks he is "so good looking". I have lost all respect for her taste in men. Thankfully, she wised up and gave the rose to Jef with one F, but not after dancing with Stevie O'Shea who's gelled hair was so bad, I guess I see why he had that hat on. (he also had his standard complaint about Mr. Luxury coming to talk to Emily)
Nerds on Stage

The final date box comes in, and it is for Dawson Leary who is "excited" and "pumped" and thinks it is "awesome". Emily meets him at the airport where they take a jet to the Greenbrier. This is actually a pretty cool date. I've always wanted to go to the Greenbrier. Sadly, Emily didn't feel the sparks for Dawson when he was talking about film-making, Jen Lindy, and his creek, so Dawson got the boot. I'm actually pretty surprised. I thought he would be around for much longer.
Not enough to save you Dawson

At the cocktail party before the rose ceremony, Jerry Maguire commits the ultimate Bachelor sin by taking Emily's time when he already has a rose. Prince Charming with his weasel nose and Stevie O'Shea whine about it... of course. Jerry Maguire has written Emily a 7-page letter that he makes her read aloud. As if this isn't bad enough, Prince Charming is waiting in the wings hyperventilating waiting for his turn to talk to Emily. When he finally gets his sit-down with Emily, PC pimps out his 5 year old son because it worked so well for Doug. Emily didn't seem as touched since PC didn't have a letter from said son. I thought this was a sign he was going home, but alas the producers made her keep him around for house drama - or tears if the scenes from the next are to be believed.
In the end, we say goodbye to Aaron and Kyle - and I question Emily's judgement or think the producers are really mean.

Next week it looks like some baby mama drama is about to hit the fan. I can't wait!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Working For The Weekend

At 1:30 today I will be en route to JACKSON! Sweet Tetons, I can't wait to meet you. Thank you for all the suggestions. We will definitely have a full calendar now!

I got a comment from "Anonymous" about my Bachelor recap in which I was called "an idiot" for not knowing the show was rigged. The commenter said I have no right to judge an edited version of reality television. Well, Anonymous, I realize you don't agree with my "stupid opinion", but if someone signs up for the Bachelor, it is no secret they will be edited to look like a dork - whether this is because only fame-seeking dorks sign up for reality television or it's the editing, remains to be seen. Chicken or the egg...? No one goes on The Bachelor to find love - see, Anonymous, I do realize "how fake reality tv is". When someone goes on 'reality' television, whether they are coerced by the producers to walk in dancing to a boom box in a bright green shirt or not, they open themselves up to public opinion. If I put up videos of myself singing "Unbreak My Heart" into a webcam on YouTube, you can bet I would expect some giggles. But, then again, I "have no life and blog about my stupid opinion", so I am not that creative. I appreciate your opinion, Anonymous, but I will continue to make fun of The Bachelor, not because I have no life or I am a total jerk, but because these guys are hilarious without even trying - or the editing deserves an Emmy. And if I hurt their feelings in the process, well I apologize, but I am only rehashing things they actually did on.national.television.

Next week's recap will be a day delayed while I travel back from my mountain paradise.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Party Like It's 1999

Oprah quit dieting 21 years ago.
I'm sort of in denial that it is 2012. I omit entire decades when calculating how long ago things were - "That was in 1992. I can't believe that was 10 years ago." "It wasn't 10 years ago, Melissa, it was TWENTY years ago." This conversation happens all too often.
Baxter Bark Twice had a great link to 48 things that will make you feel old. And it did.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Houston, We Have a Problem

When I used to travel for work, stopping for lunch was the highlight of my day. While I usually tried to find cute local spots, sometimes ending up at a chain was inevitable. One chain I always got excited to see was Houston's. I am obsessed with their Thai Steak & Noodle Salad.
I've found a few adaptations for the recipe online, and combined a few of them to get as close as possible to the real thing. This salad is perfect for hot summer evenings with it's sweet mango, crunchy peanuts, and savory steak. I love it, because it is hearty enough for the gents, but light enough for the ladies (or the other way around like in my house).

Houston's Thai Steak & Noodle Salad
Dressing Ingredients:
  • 6 tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoon water
  • 2 large clove garlic, minced
  • 3 teaspoons Sriracha
  • 2 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 4 tablespoon canola oil
Salad Ingredients:
  • 1 pound skirt or flank steak
  • 2 ounce udon noodles, cooked
  • 2 large handfuls of spinach or romaine
  • 2 large handfuls shredded napa cabbage
  • 2 large handfuls of cilantro, chopped
  • 2 large handfuls of mint, chopped
  • 2 small julienned carrots
  • 2/3 cup diced mango
  • 1 handful of crushed peanuts
Mix the dressing ingredients and set aside. Season the steak with salt and pepper. Cook to preferred done-ness on stove, grill, or in the oven. Slice into strips and serve over the salad ingredients. Toss with dressing and serve. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Gentlemen, the final rose tonight

The big night has come and gone. What was just pictures, are now walking, talking, horrific characters. The Bachelorette has begun.
The show opens with Chris Harrison talking to Emily in her evening gown version of a figure skating costume. Do you think the producers purposefully had her meet all the guys with her back turned to show off the control top panty-ho netting up her back? And did anyone notice that Emily's forehead was as frozen as the arctic tundra? She proclaimed about 12 times that she is 26, I don't think a 26 year old needs to botox their forehead into submission.
The limos arrive, and the games begin...
First out is Sean, the insurance agent from Dallas. He walks in with an embarrassing swagger and undresses Emily with his eyes as he walks away. Sean's sultry eyes get to stay until next week.
Then we meet David, the singer/songwriter from NYC, who I thought would make us wait to hear his vocal stylings, but oh no.. David showed his cards early with his lyrically deep "Emi-ly, Em-i-ly, Emily.." in the bio bit at the beginning.
Doug, the single father who has an 11 year old got the first impression rose, because of his letter from his 11 year old son. I'm not trying to be mean to a defenseless little kid, but did anyone else think that letter could have been written by a 6 year old? Maybe the Seattle school system needs a little help. Doug's first impression rose made him safe through next week.
Jackson, the fitness model far exceeded my expectations for the embarrassing factor by coming in, dropping to one knee, and professing to Emily that: "life is not about the breaths we take, but the moments that take our breath away". That may work for an 18-year old's senior quote, but not for a grown woman. So terrible. Luckily, Emily has some sense, and Jackson was sent packing
Joe/Dawson Leary came in how exclaiming "I'M SO EXCITED!" Let's hope this enthusiasm was just first night jitters.
We then meet Arie, who is much more handsome in person. He seems nice, and dare I say... normal. I predict Arie making it pretty far in this competition.
Kyle comes out of the limo, and is "in awe" of Emily's beauty. Standard introduction, but I will take this over some of the other male hi jinx.
Then we see Little Foot in the flesh, who went to his dad for advice on the show. His dad told him that he would find his true love in the land of the tree stars. During their "getting to know you time" Little Foot gave Emily a a bobble heads of themselves. His bobblehead's eyes were not nearly close enough together.
We then meet Aaron, the biology teacher who came out with a sexy teacher impression wearing glasses only to rip them off to make a bad pun about chemistry. Aaron stayed.
Alessandro who was listed as from Brazil got a lot less exotic when we disclosed he has lived in Minnesota now - and when he barrelled out of the car like a linebacker. He is way chubbier than his picture led on.
Jef was the last out of this limo. He was dragged on the back riding a skateboard. Nice, Jef. Emily declared him "cool". I declare him the real life version of Johnny Newtron. 

Lerone starts next round, and talks about how he is attracted to single moms. This wasn't enough to get him a rose to the next round.
Stevie, the "Party MC" is by far the worst character on the show. He steps out of the limo with his own boom box and does a terrible dance. He is wearing a bright green shirt, and all I can think about while he is dancing is who stole my lucky charms.

Stevie O'Shea already has a vendetta against Mr. Luxury Kalon for his extravagant entrance. He over dramatizes an interaction that Mr. Luxury has with Arie when Arie wants to "steal" Emily away. Stevie O'Shea is the worst, and I can't wait for him to get cut.
Stevie O'Shea being a jerk
Randy leads the next limo dressed as an old granny who rips off his wig and house dress to reveal... A VEST! Randy apparently doesn't go anywhere without a vest. Too bad Emily does.. Randy is out.

Nate from Laguna seems remarkably normal compared to Randy's get-up. Emily calls him "so cute" and says he smells good. Nate is in to the next round.
Brett is as nerdy as I expected and came complete with his own name tag, too bad remembering his name isn't enough to get saved. See ya, Brett. And what was all that talk about 6 kids?
Tony, Toni, Tone. This guy is so painful! He showed up with a plastic ballet flat on a pillow talking some jibberish about Prince Charming. Did anyone else think that a young Steve Carrell was punking us? That crap was way too much to be real. And when are guys going to learn that not every woman wants to be a princess.

John AKA "Wolf" was on the prowl, and checked out Emily's rack during their entire conversation.
Travis was a sweaty, bumbling mess and to top it off, he brought an ostrich egg (?!) that he will protect like he would protect Emily and Ricki. Who tells these guys this is a good idea? Sadly, Emily pittied him and kept Sweaty Egg to next week.
Get a sweat rag, Travis.
Limo #3 pulls up, and first out Music Mike from Austin. His locks were so shiny. I am sure Emily kept him around to find out what shampoo he is using.
We then meet Charlie from Nashville who was in a terrible accident and suffered a brain injury. He seems like a very sweet guy, and will probably hang around for a few more weeks, but I don't see him being anywhere near a top contender.
Jean-Paul looks way older and stiffer than his picture. He wore a terrible plaid shirt and plaid tie combo. Emily must have taste in mens fashion, because she dumped him.
Emily got to practice her Spanish with Colombian mushroom farmer, Alejandro. I hope we never have to hear her talk Spanish again.
Ryan was handsome and seemed pretty normal - I am letting his stupid sign thing and his sports agent suit slide.
Last out was Kalon, the luxury brand consultant, who arrived in a helicopter. This stuff just keeps getting better. He kept patting himself on the back for his grand entrance. All the guys hate him already - and so do I.

In the end, Emily has 20 guys, most of them total dorks. I think there are 3 guys in there that I would actually talk to at a bar - one being Dawson Leary, because I want to see how long he can keep that excitement up. I really wish Sweaty Egg had gotten booted, so he could have had a rant about his eggs rotting. I don't know how long I can stand having to watch Stevie O'Shea on this show. He is beyond painful.
Did anyone watch until the bitter end (after the 3 minutes scenes from the season montage) of the ousted "Fitness Model" showing his muscles? I have never seen someone so in love with himself. And if there is a girl out there (not on Jersey Shore) who is really into big muscles like that, I'd like to meet her.