Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Week 1...25 to go

I have been contemplating whether or not I wanted to blog about this.  It's sort of personal, sort of weird and for sure has nothing to do with my house decor.  But none the less it is what is going on in "Mrs. Dow-Ward's Neighborhood" so here it is.

Early in July I learned about a medical study going on at University of Tennessee/Methodist Hospital in Memphis that is sponsored by the American Association of Diabetes.  The information was passed to be from a friend who thought I might be interested.  To be clear, I do not have diabetes, or pre-diabetes.  I am simply, overweight. Yes, I said it.  I admitted it, I've faced the fact, it is true and now it is time to do something about it.

Through the span of about 4 weeks I went to the hospital for various forms of pre-study testing. This mostly revolved around blood work but also included a bone density scan (which was awesome) and a testing of my resting metabolic rate, to name a few.

Last Friday, August 27th I began day one of the nutrition component to the diet.  Every particle of food that I ingest for the next 6 months has been personally selected for me by a registered nutritionist and by the medical team conducting the study.  There are two different diet groups for the study, high protein and carbohydrate based diets. The diet you participate in is selected randomly, and as I did, the participant just has to hope for the best.

Today is Tuesday, I'm on day 5 of week 1 of this 26 week diet. To me it was a no brain-er which diet I was more interested in.  As it would turn out, my favored plan was granted.  I am on the high protein diet. So far so good. Although I must admit that I am reminiscing about the "last supper", if you will, that the Canadian and I had on Thursday night.  I ate BBQ chicken nachos from Central BBQ with the Elam/Jasper family. Followed by one last trip to Jerry's Sno Cones for a "wedding cake supreme".  It was all one could hope for and say the least.

Did I mention the greatest part? Well, one of the greatest parts. Because this is a study and I'm a willing in I'm willing to let them stick me in the arm for blood work on a regular basis and do exactly what they tell me to for 6 months...all of this food is completely FREE to me.  As someone who is without a full time job and is beginning her last year of a degree program....I'm now looking at this experience as the beautifully decorated window (with silk dupioni window treatments) "G-O-D" opened for me after so harshly slamming a 1000 pound door on my hands. Ouch, and yes that still hurts.

Though I am willing to admit that this is going on in my life, I'm not yet brave enough to admit the beginning stats of this study other than to say that in the 4 years we have lived in Memphis, I have gained over 70 pounds.  Lost 30 here and there, gained it back and then some. Ba-rutal!
I refuse to enter 30 in a bad way, though I do also have 2 years and 4 months to fix it.

For the next 6 months, I'm sure you'll hear a little about it here and there with the obligatory lust after wallpaper, fabric or throw pillows that my otherwise occupied checkbook is not able to entertain.

Wish me luck, the fanny and I need it!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bringing the woods inside.

In addition to the many other projects I have in my folder...this one occasionaly floats on to the top.
I have visions of beautiful Cole and Son wallpaper coating multiple walls in my house. This just happens to be the one that has floated to the top....on this particular day.

I vision this hallway:

With this wallpaper:

This wallpaper is now available to the public (not just the trade) via Anthropologie.

And now for the sigh (multiple sighs)....and back into the folder. Someday it will be realized.

cole and son photos via google images

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Safety Red on the brain

I've got three pictures to float out there....and all I can say is that I'm itching to paint.




Do I have anything to paint, I have the supplies to do it, yes....Only time shall tell where this blog post is going.  I'm just a little toooo inspired by the projects going on over at  Pearl Street Interiors and Living, Loving, Learning.

Check'em out.  These ladies are equipped with spray paint, and they're not afraid to use it. 

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Farm projects in Midtown

This week has been a sad adjustment back to reality after the fabulous week at the beach.  All these years I've maintained that I wasn't a "beach person"....and as I've reconsidered in the past few days I now realize that I was just telling myself a little white lie. Would I go back tomorrow, yes.  Would I go live there, YES!  Piano teachers are needed everywhere, right? 

So back on the farm this week, otherwise known as midtown Memphis, I have been feeding the livestock:

And have been working in the pasture:

Our crops have done well this year.  The flowers grew despite the wicked hot sunshine beating down on their shade stems and petals. The grass has turned from 98% weeds to 98% grass. And in the meantime I'm still contemplating the option of having a front walk.  Now that the grass is looking so nice and lush, I hate to tear it up.  

Yesterday, in the name of sidewalk research, I drove slowly past farms near by to look at other sidewalk options.  I'm leading towards brick, yet again....Here's what I found:

These folks have a nice pathway with a nice landing street side. What a nice way to welcome guests.  Also, this house is a very similar style to ours. 

I highly enjoy the white cement "grout" that goes with this sidewalk.  Also, isn't the grass pretty? 

And lastly, these folks went with the straight and narrow approach with the added bonus of a few steps. Quite nice, I would say. 

All I can say now is that I'm even more confused than I was before when I was still trying to decide what kind of material to I can't decide which way to place it.  Grrrr...I highly enjoy the excitement of options, and yet highly dislike the aspect of organizing and weighing them. 

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Beachy Keen

Last Wednesday, about mid-day, the Canadian and I decided to get in the car and drive to Florida. I had only been to Florida once before and Geoff hadn't been at all.  So in the car we hop, and on the road we went.
Since living in Memphis, oh geez it's been 4 years already, we have heard countless people talk about Destin, Florida.  "Most beautiful sand in the world"...blah, blah, blah.  Here's the scoop....that sand is not only beautiful, every time I set foot on the beach I wanted to scoop up a fist full and eat it because the stuff is not only as soft as sugar, it looks like sugar!
We arrived late on Wednesday night so didn't have any views of the ocean until the morning.  I sprung out of bed on Thursday morning as though it was Christmas morning and I was a 4 year old.  I was so excited to see what was on the other side of the windows. And man was I excited...I had no idea that it could look like this....

WOW, so about 7 minutes later I had the Canadian out of bed and off to the beach we went. We sat foot on the beach at about 10am and didn't budge until the sun went down.  Sounds great, right?  
Yes, it was great, until we came inside and found that we both looked like lobsters.  Good lord. As I have now learned, a sunburn earned from the ocean is a little bit different from one that you earn at the swimming pool! That being said the weather the first day was, in my mind, excellent.  The wind was gently passing through, the sun was shining, there were some clouds in the sky, though they were such an enduring shade of gray/black (haha). 

While Geoff ambled out into the salt water, I sat firmly in my chair....
I had a cooler to protect folks, that's a serious job. 

Not to worry, I did let the water touch my feet. I didn't stay completely away. Remember, this is my "first" ocean experience.  Patients please. 

Friday we spent most of the day was sort of a "heal our wounds" sort of thing.  I haven't had a sunburn in YEARS, I (fortunately) had forgot how much they hurt.  All things said, and all blisters aside, Thursday was one of the greatest days of my life/our life.  That part of Florida is simply glorious. The beach, from what I remember, in near Orlando can't even compare.  Good job to the man upstairs, he did good.  

Saturday, we were able to bend our arms and legs enough to get into the car and see what is Destin and Sand Destin. I had no idea the area would be as big as it is.  It's huge.  Once you venture a few blocks from the beach, it looks like any other city would. Walmart, Target, Win-Dixie, Walgreens about every 2 blocks, etc.  

Following our mini car trip we went back to the beach and resumed position (this time completely under the umbrella) on the beach.

The remainder of the trip went as follows:
Eat, beach, drink on the beach, eat on the beach, sleep, beach, eat, beach, etc.  You get the idea.  It mainly revolved around....THE BEACH.  Our days were numbered people!

Monday we were sitting on the beach...which looked like this:

And we decided to go buy some seafood and cook it in the condo instead of going out to eat.  Back in the car we went, bending of the arms and legs was much smoother by now, and down the road the car motored to this place:

Not much to look at from the outside, but based on those signs hanging on the front, we were in for a t-r-e-a-t!

WHOA-Look out!

This served as more of an artistic display than it did a cuisine option.  
Following our purchase, we went back to the beach and as per looked like this:

We became very comfortable with assuming this position.

Closing in on the end of a really good trip is always difficult, 
when it is hard to leave that usually means it was good, right? 

poor thing...he looks kind of sad doesn't he?

Oh, what fun...I think it is safe to say that this 7 day trip  ranks high on my "beachy keen" list!  

Here we are, 1 week into having this sunburn and it is hard to believe that it was already a week ago, the time has come and gone, just like another summer in Memphis.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

AH-such a good idea

I bought a pair of these curtains when we moved into our house over 2 years ago in attempt to cover 1 of the 39 windows in our house.  I currently have my pair hanging in our butler's pantry with a natural roman shade hanging in the window.  I was looking at Blue Hydrangea this week and loved her idea for these curtain panels (she has the same window set up).  Pictured below is the final project.

Take a look...I'm hoping to do this little project in the next week or so...hold me to it!
And...even more trivial...let's see if mine look anything like that!

Monday, August 9, 2010

The art of the sno cone.

Jerry's Sno Cones in Memphis has quickly become one of my favorite Shelby County dives.  It is by foodie  definition a "dive".  Naturally, one of the aspects of it being a dive, is that it is  cheap, and absolutely delicious!  Over the past 2-3 weeks my Canadian husband (who loves anything that's related to snow) and I have become regulars.  We have tried out several flavors, and both have found one that we are hooked on.

The first time we went, Geoff had blue raspberry and I had wedding cake, the second time I was stuck on the wedding cake and Geoff tried watermelon.  The next time, we decided to go all out and made our cones a "supreme". At Jerry's this means that they add ice cream to your sno cone.  It's a 5 alarmer, yup it's amazing.  I don't know if I'll ever be the same.  So if you are skeptical, or if your mouth is watering...either way here's some visuals to go with your upcoming visit.  And yes, if you're in Memphis you must go.  If you're looking to plan a trip to Memphis, you must add this to your list!

The line up at Jerry's on a hot summer night looks like this.

Reminiscent of a drive in = family fun for all.

It's a cute dive...sometimes places are just dives, at least this one is cute!

The Canadian waiting at the pick up window.

Young Jerry's fans-there's nothing better than a stocking
 cap to go with your sno cone on a Saturday night. Yes, you too will
 want to eat yours with your hands, it is that good!

wedding cake and watermelon supreme

dreamsicle and watermelon supreme

Many satisfied customers.

I found out about Jerry's from my new gal pal, and native Memphian over at Living, Loving, Learning. So glad to know it is there, it's made my summer a bit more "cool".

Jerry's Sno Cones
1657 Wells Station Road
Memphis, TN 38108-2963

Hulu is....Bananas

Today I was looking on Hulu (and to borrow a phrase Rachel Zoe,  Hulu is "bananas"...I love it) to refresh my memory for a couple of design items I wanted to attempt to duplicate.  I didn't find exactly what I was looking for but I did find these helpful and inspirational postings from Bob and Cortney Novogratz...

Happy viewing!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

On-Line Shopping.

I was doing some on-line shopping today. Often that is much safer than shopping in stores, and it is so hot today in Memphis I couldn't imagine going out of the house (for anything other than a sonic slush).

Here are some good finds today from Target:

This lovely end table at such a lovely price!  $34.98 and had been $99.99!  Good save!

This rug is an amazing price!  If you were so inclined to, you could by a 7x10 for less about $115.00

I've heard a rumor that ikat is on the way out.  I don't really believe it though...come's ikat!
This bedding solves any worries I've had...well except it's on sale...I don't care I still like the ikat! 
I mean, come on it's revearsable! 

I'm not particularly in the market for a lamp, but I must say that I think this is a "Jim-Bob dandy"

Come to think of it, this lamp would like nice on a table next to this pouf  from yesterday's post
Supposing that you like the white on white on white on white set up...does anybody else but me?

And last, but certinally not least...what home would be complete without this? It comes in white, but come's a pink piano!!!!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Ode to the Pouf.

I love Moroccan Poufs.  I mean, I think they're the greatest thing since tic-tacs. They're so cute. The one hitch in this fascination scenario giddy up is that I've not actually ever seen one with my eyes, I want to see one so I can touch it with my hands.  I see them on the Internet and about thirtybagillion other blogs, but I never see them to buy. Naturally you can buy them online (heck you can buy everything on line...DUH) So...I deem them to be   "They're mysterious poufs". 

Here are some of my favorite pouf photos...

I'd buy a purple one, maybe even 2 purple ones....

I like this one because it reminds me of a keyboard....although I don't think I'd actually buy this one.

This isn't actually a Moroccan pouf, it's just cute because of the kitty.  I wonder what Handsome would look like on a pouf?  Probably a little like this....

He'd for sure require 2 poufs...he'd lob over the side if he only had one bless his heart.

Back to the poufs.....

I like rows of poufs....

And stacks of poufs....

poufs in a circle on the floor....

Poufs around the fireplace....

Poufs in front of an arm chair....
(love the white on white)

If you had a pouf, or 2 or 7...where would you put it? Or would you even invest in one of these silly things? Are they cute or is it just my imagination.  Do I want one because they are hard to get or because they truly are that cool.  Either way, tracking one down is an investment in its self. They're not just hanging out in a store around the corner (or are they?). Has anybody seen a pouf on a shelf in a store?


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