Category Archives: Southern Living

Dreams do come true

You guys! All of my Shreveport prayers have been answered! It’s happening! It’s really happening!

On Wednesday, I was literally leaving the grocery store, when I refreshed my Facebook newsfeed and saw this article from the Shreveport Times as well as the following:

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Are you at all surprised that tears of joy literally sprang from my eyes? I actually cried and became weepy, I was that happy and excited.

Then, the ultimate cherry on top of an already fabulous news week, was that Shreveport is also getting its own Blo Blow Dry Bar.

Blo Blow Dry BarThis week was proof that dreams do come true.

Great organic produce + great hair = I have died and gone to Shreveport heaven.

 

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Filed under Hungry bavs, Southern Living

Girls’ Weekend in Nashville

The month of September ended on a high note when my sister and a few of our friends met up together in Nashville, Tennessee for a girls’ weekend and a half marathon race.

Pre-race dinner!

Pre-race dinner!

We ran the Women’s Running Series Half Marathon and it was the first race I’ve ever run where serious thought was put into what runners really want during and after running 13.1 miles.

Free running skirt stations in addition to water stops? Check.

Champagne and chocolate chip cookies at the finish line? Check, check!

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The race started and ended at the Country Music Hall of Fame, and the weather was perfect. It was so great to catch up and we agreed that weekends like this are so important and absolutely necessary, especially since everyone’s lives are becoming more and more full as we get married and start families. We’ve already started scheming for the next trip.

Oh, and here’s the obligatory, pre-best-pulled-pork-sandwich-of-my-life-and-I-don’t-even-eat-pork photo of us in the Nashville unofficial uniform: sundresses and cowgirl boots (I have no idea why it’s so small. Sorry!).

Outside Puck's Grocery. Seriously delicious BBQ.

Outside Puck’s Grocery. Seriously delicious BBQ.

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Filed under Road Trips, Running, Southern Living, Travel

How we met “Oscar”

Shreveport can be pretty cool sometimes (yeah, I said it).

You might remember that back in 2012 at the Academy Awards, William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg, two Shreveport locals of Moonbot Studios, won the Oscar for “Best Animated Short Film” for their film, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore.

Well, a few months ago, we were lucky to be invited to a tres chic martini party by good friends of ours. It was hosted by Moonbot’s Lampton Enoch and Brandon Oldenburg, with a special guest appearance by that very “Oscar.” It was a ton of fun, and we were so grateful to be included in such a unique evening. What a treat! (p.s. it’s a lot heavier than it looks!)

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Filed under Celebrations, Southern Living

A Solution to the Food Desert

I planted a vegetable garden, and this is so monumental it warrants a blog post. Historically, my track record with plants is grim, but I am determined for my black thumb tendencies to grow at least a few vegetables this season.

I’m am motivated purely by the fact that we will probably never, ever have a Whole Foods, and I am tired of cutting into produce and having it look like this:

A very rotted red bell pepper that looked completely normal until I cut into it.

A very rotted red bell pepper that looked completely normal until I cut into it.

This actually happens a lot. My biggest struggle when I first moved here was the lack of acceptable produce. I realize now that we were very spoiled in New Jersey and D.C. I also realize that Shreveport could probably be categorized as a “Food Desert” when the Farmers’ Market isn’t in session.

“Food deserts are defined as urban neighborhoods and rural towns without ready access to fresh, healthy, and affordable food. Instead of supermarkets and grocery stores, these communities may have no food access or are served only by fast food restaurants and convenience stores that offer few healthy, affordable food options.” (http://apps.ams.usda.gov/fooddeserts/foodDeserts.aspx

We have two main grocery stores in town, and their displays are nice, but the pickings can be slim. Apples are generally mushy, green beans are usually moldy, and cucumbers are always flaccid and limp.

This isn’t to say we lack flavor. Louisiana is known for its cajun cooking, and we definitely have plenty of that, which is great for a night out. We also have every fast-food chain imaginable.

But, in my efforts to avoid living off of take-out and rotted peppers, I have planted a vegetable garden for the fall.

I bought seeds from the very helpful experts at Lex Plant Farm. (The basil seeds were free from a Mrs. Meyer's soap purchase.)

I bought seeds from the very helpful experts at Lex Plant Farm. (The basil seeds were free from a Mrs. Meyer’s soap purchase.)

We’re starting off with carrots, green onions, and basil (those were a freebie), and when it cools down, I’m hoping to add in some beets or broccoli, or both. We’ll see how this goes. I have no idea what I’m doing.

The fertilizer contains blood meal and smells like a slaughter house. Gidget was all over this.

The fertilizer contains blood meal and smells like a slaughter house. Gidget was all over this.

The basil pots! This is technically a summer herb, but it's hot enough still (95 degrees) that I think we can pull this off for now.

The basil pots! This is technically a summer herb, but it’s hot enough still (95 degrees) that I think we can pull this off for now.

The 2 x 2 raised bed for our garden.

The 2 x 2 raised bed for our garden.

We’re five days in and I haven’t forgotten to water anything yet. I’m already feeling victorious.

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Filed under Southern Living

Road Trip: Fort Worth, Texas

Last month we celebrated Rich’s first full weekend off in two months, by taking a road trip to Fort Worth. We had never been, and we were curious to check out the sister city to Dallas.

Fort Worth has such an adorable downtown, and the shops offer a lot of unique gifts without being overly cheesy and tourist-driven. Since there are almost no chain stores, the downtown has a truly authentic feel.

We stayed at The Ashton Hotel, and it’s one of the city’s oldest historic landmarks.

IMG_0907The hotel has been fully restored, but there are still fun little elements that remind you of its historic charm. The room key, for example, is an actual key. (We had a heightened sense of anxiety the entire weekend that we would lose it.)

IMG_0908The fun thing about Fort Worth is that there is definitely an outdoorsy, cowboy element that permeates the area. We spent Saturday on the river, kayaking alongside the city’s borders.  We rented a tandem kayak (from Backwoods Kayak & Canoe Rentals). I don’t have any pictures of this, but Rich did most of the paddling while I made feeble attempts to match his swift strokes.

That night we were complete nerds, and went to see 1964: The Tribute at the Bass Performance Hall in town. We brought the average age down about 30 years, but the band had great energy and it’s hard to beat classics from The Beatles.

Bass Performance Hall

Bass Performance Hall

On the balcony right before the show!

On the balcony right before the show!

Inside Bass Performance Hall

Inside Bass Performance Hall

1964: The Tribute

1964: The Tribute

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Filed under Road Trips, Southern Living, Summer 2013, Travel

A real summer treat

You guys. After sweltering for months in ungodly temperatures and humidity, the unthinkable finally happened. It has FINALLY cooled off.

Yesterday morning some rains showers moved through…

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… and now the average ‘high’ is only 84°.

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This morning, I was actually cold when I went outside. It was amazing.

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Filed under Southern Living, Summer 2013

Weekend Shows & Movies

It’s been too hot to do much of anything outdoors the past few weeks, and trying to find unique (air-conditioned) things to do on a weekend, in the summer, can be a bit of a challenge.

Yet, somehow we discovered a few gems.

Bossier Parish Community College recently put on several performances of Neil Simon’s Barefoot in the Park. A friend and I went to a Sunday matinee and LOVED it. Laugh out loud funny. We were so impressed with the students’ performances, and were so glad we went.

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Then this weekend, another friend and I went to see The Way Way Back at The Robinson Film Center. It completely exceeded all expectations, and was very sweet, funny, and heart-warming. The Robinson always manages to pleasantly surprise me with films I wouldn’t normally seek out.

What summer films have you seen this summer? And, any good beach reads? I really enjoyed this book, with it’s dark plot twist: The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls.

 

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Filed under Southern Living