Dressing up for the Halloween Party

This year we have a big Halloween party downtown at one of my favorite clubs, so a bunch of us girls are getting together to dress up and then ride downtown together. We decided to meet at Penny’s house, because she has three bathroom with plenty of mirrors and lights for us girls to be putting on makeup and doing our hair without having to take turns and wait on someone else to finish.

Several of us are going as zombies this year, but we are going to be glamorous zombies, not the gross scary kind. I’m putting together a combination zombie and steampunk costume. A lot of my girlfriends are really getting into steampunk. Its a twist on Victorian England style of clothing. I think it is like Waterworld on land with gas lights. Do you know what I mean?

picture of my girlfriends Victorian dress

My girlfriend Penny is going dressed up steampunk. She handmade this whole dress.  Everyone in her office had to dress up for Halloween today and they had a group lunch at TGI Friday’s. I think it must have been fun at restaurants in the business district if other offices were dressing up, too, and then going out to lunch together.

I wish my boss had a sense of humor and would have let us dress up. But, no. He is worried about offending one of the customers, so we were not allowed. So, we will have our fun tonight!

Ideas for Contemporary Furnishings

Having a taste of contemporary living includes choosing furniture designed with clean lines, minimal details, and colored in shades of white, stainless steel, or dark wood.  Finding compatible pieces and design inspirations can be a bit of a challenge but there are several ways to find great ideas to create contemporary living spaces.

First, one of the easiest idea spots is a furniture retailer’s website. Often there are numerous photos of trendy interior design ideas. Some pictures may include furniture, lighting and accessories, and compatible color schemes.

Next, interior design magazines, particularly those focusing on contemporary living, are excellent resources for ideas designed to tie- in an entire home; from kitchen and bathrooms to living and dining spaces. This allows shoppers to preview multiple rooms to get a sense of what their overall contemporary-themed home will look like when fully furnished.

Finally, one of the most unique places to find contemporary design inspirations is by looking through upscale travel publications. There you will find pictures from the most exclusive hotels and villas where contemporary furnishings and designs are recognized as some of the best. Since rooms tend to be all-inclusive or have smaller bedrooms, people looking to furnish a studio or loft space with contemporary furniture can get ideas how to maximize a smaller living space stylishly.

Craving Dessert Tonight

My sweet tooth must be acting up today because all day long I have been craving dessert. I almost never order any kind of dessert with my lunch, but today I bought a chocolate chip cookie to go with my hamburger. I even stopped at the convenience store and bought a small carton of cold milk to go with my cookie. It was great!

But that was not enough sweets for me. I want something for dessert after dinner. I’m trying to decide if I should bake something myself or drive across to the grocery store and get pick out something from the bakery. I love the bakery items at Publix – everything they make is using recipes from Paula Deen. I just love Paula Deen’s recipes – that woman may not understand bigotry, but she sure knows how to cook good food!

OK – I think I just talked myself into driving over to Publix and picking out something from their bakery case. I might even get something to take to work with me tomorrow for lunch, like a package of sushi or their awesome fried chicken. I think the Publix fried chicken tastes better than KFC chicken and costs a lot less, too. I have to go – I’m getting so hungry my stomach is growling now!

Chicken and Waffles for Dinner

A popular foodie item on the West Coast is chicken and waffles, but there are not many places back East that serve them. The most famous place is in the Los Angeles area. Someone started a little diner kind of place and some of the Hollywood crowd found the place and started hanging out there. Next thing they knew, there was so much business they had to open a second location, and then another and another…. and now there are imitators all over the place, too.

Around here, I noticed a newspaper article about some of the newer trendy restaurants are starting to feature chicken and waffles, but not the traditional style – they have their own little flourishes. I was in the mood for some regualr, old school chicken and waffles the other night, but could not find any place online that specifically listed that as something on their menu.

So, I ended up going to Puckett’s downtown and was going to order their shrimp and grits when I noticed that they have included chicken and waffles on their menu now! Woot! The only thing that concerned me is the menu description said that the chicken is dipped in a batter with some spciy cajun seasoning. Oh, shoot. I asked if there was any way they could hold off on the spicy seasonings, but the waitress said that it was already in the batter – but that it was very light and that most people cannot even taste it. So I decided to try it.

I have to say that the Puckett’s version of chicken and waffles is excellent. The spicy cajun seasoning is barely noticeable but it does give the chicken just a little kick. The waffles are huge, Belgian waffle style and very moist and tender. You don’t need a knife for either the waffles or the chicken – they are fork tender. That was a winner for me – I will definitely order the chicken and waffles at Puckett’s again.

Affordable Granite Countertops That Last

One of the nicest upgrades a kitchen or bathroom can receive is the installation of granite countertops. Often perceived as an expensive investment, the added value far outweighs the overall cost; which can vary greatly depending on the type of granite used, its color and size. While faux granite can be used to lower the cost to replace granite countertops which have been broken, cracked, worn or need replacing; both natural and faux options upgrade a kitchen’s or bathroom’s  overall first impression.

In fact, one of the most requested home features buyers look for is additional kitchen and bathroom counter space. Replacing laminate or tile with granite countertops enhances the room by adding a polished appeal and provides the illusion of a non-stop, continuous counter space. A small kitchen or bathroom will appear bigger and the naturally polished or faux granite will add an element of light reflection; creating a welcoming atmosphere for all who enter.

If looking to make these enhancements on a budget, the purchasing of new second-hand , remnant, or surplus building materials can provide homeowners with significant savings. Savings can vary but sometimes exceed over half-off a competitor’s purchase price. These savings make granite countertops affordable and allow shoppers to purchase additional building supplies to complete a kitchen or bathroom remodel.