Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Isn't Sun Valley a lovely name?

Last weekend CB, our friend (who we've nicknamed the sister wife and who is really more of a Sir John Middleton but who has asked to be referred to as Bingley on this blog so we'll call him that because he's a good friend) Bingley, and I headed to Phoenix, AZ. Why? Why not? The gentlemen wanted to see a the Funny or Die Oddball Comedy Tour that would not be touring to the Southeast and I wanted to be warm and dry for a couple of days, so Phoenix seemed like a good plan for all of us.

Phoenix is a lovely place with all kinds of things to do and see. There are scads of galleries, fabulous shopping in Scottsdale, tons of outdoor activities for...you know...outdoorsy people, amazing architecture...at least that's what all the brochures at the resort where we stayed said. It all sounded wonderful; however, all those activities would've required me getting out of my pool chair and that just seemed like a lot of ...work. And really, working on my tan was about all I could handle. That and eating.

I must say that when I did muster the energy to peel myself away from the pool, I found that Phoenix has some fantastic restaurants. We ate breakfast (lunch EST) Saturday morning at Matt's Big Breakfast which is a farm to table breakfast (obvi) place with big (duh) portions. Yum. I ordered the salami scrambled eggs with hashbrowns and CB had flapjacks with bacon and homefries. It was So. Much. Food. So we went back to the hotel to sleep it off and recover.

With our football appetites sated, our skin sunkissed, and our stomachs once again ready to receive food, we headed to the airport to pick up Bingley and grab some dinner at Barrio Cafe. This place was voted best Mexican restaurant in Phoenix and boasts a James Beard nominated chef. It's in a modest looking neighborhood, but the food absolutely lived up to its rave reviews. Hands down the best Mexican food I've ever eaten.

Sunday was more pooling and tanning with a quick break for some In N Out Burger. I had never been before, so the boys humored me and I was not disappointed. Then more tanning and pooling before it was time to head to dinner and a show. Stockyard Steakhouse was our dinner choice for the evening. Yum. I really don't think there is much better food than a really well cooked (and by well I mean medium rare) filet mignon. Sorry, Mom. Between the apps, 'tres, 'serts, and wine, I really wasn't sure how I was going to make it through the comedy show without falling asleep.

For the record, I did stay awake for the show. It was funny. But I know most of you and you don't care about the show. You're more pissed off that I didn't take pictures of my meals than the fact that I'm not talking about the show. Sorry.

All in all it was a delightful, restful weekend. I tried to get CB to stay forever because it's always sunny and every day is a good hair day, but he said no because they don't have sweet tea. I guess that's fair. He did make up for it by buying me some roses and chocolate on Saturday. That's how my husband rolls, y'all, he buys me flowers on vacation because he knows I love them and can't have them at home.  And he takes me on faboo weekends away. What a stud.

Fondest regards,
The Lady

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A Lady who lunches...

*The following post references a burger which was consumed on a Friday; however, it is not an official Fatty Friday post.

**Also, sorry there are no pictures. I don't carry my camera (which is separate from my phone) with me. One day I will catch up to the rest of the world.

Summer finally decided to show up last Friday, so Katherine and I lunched at the rooftop bar of The Georgia Theater. Y'all. If you have not been to the rooftop of the Georgia Theater, you simply must. It is delightful. Under the new management of the Branded Butcher, there is a fabulous menu that includes barbecue, tacos, sandwiches, and burgers with yummy Holeman and Finch buns. The only downside (can I even call it a downside?) of the burger was trying to pick from the bazillion toppings they offered. I went with the pimento goat cheese, but it meant that I had to pass on the whipped bone marrow. Are you freaking kidding me!?!? Whipped Bone Marrow?!?!? On a burger?!?!?! Why is this not a condiment everywhere. Mmm. I'm tearing up a little just now thinking about the fact that I didn't order that. Don't get me wrong, the pimento goat cheese was great, but...I mean... I don't think I'm being too dramatic here. Where was I?

Yes. The burger. It was pretty good. I wish I had specified that I wanted it medium rare, but that's my only complaint. Everything else was perfect. And the atmosphere is unmatched. It's just super fun to go up there and look out at downtown and think about how awesome it is to live in the Classic City. Seriously. Awesome. Plus, while we were lunching the Phickle Chickle showed up. You know how I love me some Athens Glitterati, y'all. This lady works her rear end off making and selling pickled vegetables that make you want to slap your grandmama. And, as someone who works so hard pursuing her passion, she's just an inspiration. One day we'll be friends. In a totally not creepy stalker kind of way.

That's it. Lunch was great. Katherine was great (as always). And Athens was great. It was just one of those "I love my life" kind of days.

Fondest regards,
The Lady

Thursday, September 5, 2013

One Upon a Year Ago...

Colonel Brandon suggested we take a trip for Labor Day and asked where I would like to go. "That sounds nice." I thought and decided that we should go to New Orleans (having never been to New Orleans, it did not occur to me that it is not a city in which fashionable Ladies of Leisure Summer). Humidity, be damned! I have always wanted to go to the Crescent City and was beyond excited.

Unfortunately, there was a bit of trouble brewing in the Gulf in the form of Hurricane Isaac. I spent the entire week leading up to the trip anxiously watching live Weather Channel coverage working just like I was supposed to. Alas, tales of airport closures and power outages were seriously threatening our plans and even hours of watching Jim Cantore cover the storm punch the hurricane in the face like a badass couldn't make me feel better. In the end, however, the airports opened, the hotel confirmed they had power, and we were good to go. So I packed my bags, got a manicure (no reason), finalized my list of must-eat restaurants, and hit the road to hit the air.

CB was traveling that week, so I met him at the airport. I arrived a few minutes after his plane landed, so I went to meet him at baggage claim per his instructions. When I got there, however, there were no bags, no other people, just a sweet boy all spiffed up and sitting by himself on the side of the baggage carousel. He didn't see me walk up, so I sat down next to him and said something like, "You look very sharp today!"

Standing, he said, "Well..." and then I don't remember anything he said because he was down on one knee being wonderful and making me the happiest person in the world. I'm not sure what my response was, but I think it was something along the lines of, "yes," because afterwards I had a beautiful ring on my finger, a handsome fiance on my arm, and a plane waiting to take us away for a blissful weekend.

In the end we went to New Orleans and had a fabulous time, ate WAY too much food, spent time with some sweet friends, and didn't stop smiling.

The Lady

*This post was supposed to go up last week, but I forgot to hit "publish." Oops.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Happy Birthday...

...to my seester. She's a pain in the rear end, but I love her. Enjoy 27, Leigh-Bee, it's gonna be BIG!!!

The Lady

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Catching up...

It's been a while.

Fondest regards,
Lady Brandon

Friday, August 30, 2013

By popular demand...

A few of you have requested that I start the blog back up. It's not that I wanted to stop blogging, it just got difficult to be consistent with it. Plus, I really never felt like I had anything exciting to write about. I like writing, though. Plus, the last year has been kind of awesome and I've thought many times how nice it would be to have a written record for when I'm old and senile. I can't promise I'll keep up with it or that it'll be any good, but here it is. A few modest posts.

Fondest regards,
The Lady

Once Upon a Freshman Year...

There was a girl newly arrived in the greatest town on the planet and feeling a little apprehensive without her people around her. She did not yet know that this little town had big things in store for her. She was just getting her footing, so, in an attempt to step out and discover something about her new home, she went to a football game. She didn't dress up. She didn't tailgate. She didn't even have any friends with her. I guess she just assumed she'd find people there. Thankfully, she did.

Once the game started, the crowd was loud, the environment was fun and she figured college would be an okay place. She had no idea that this lovely Saturday in August was the beautiful beginning to a lasting love affair.

Clemson had been ahead for most of the game and things were not looking good as the fourth quarter began. Then...magic. Something clicked and the Dawgs were on DJ Shockley, Billy Bennett, and the rest of our stories heroes delivered an astonishing 31-28 victory to begin a season that would lead to Georgia's first SEC title in 20 years. The girl had never seen anything like it.

The girl was in love. She knew it was just a game. But she also knew it was so much more than that. Fall Saturday's in her new home brought with them tailgates with great food, Uga and Larry Munson, fashion unmatched by any other conference and a sense of camaraderie unknown in any other sport. Saturdays brought together generations and traditions reminding her of the enormity and history of this game. This institution.