A fish tale

I’m honestly wanting to write an actual post but I had another 13-hour work day today (albeit a great work day-I have awesome clients.) It’s almost midnight and I’m still sending and replying to emails and I want to post everyday this month so….

…so I give you-fishes, instead! I am so thankful for the phone camera.

My husband I got to attend a fundraiser event at the Georgia Aquarium two weeks ago and had an amazing time seeing all the gorgeous underwater critters!

It was a wonderful night and such a beautiful environment-absolutely magical.

I would tell you we had a whale of a time but I’ll spare us both.



My home is in Old Forth Ward in Atlanta, just outside of downtown,and I get miraculous, amazing sunsets over the skyline.

It’s always so wonderful to come home to my windows bathed in light and color and to stop my crazy day and just appreciate the glorious view of my city.

Flower Power

I do actually plan to write some things this Blogvember, but I’m working so much this week that my brain’s feeling a bit scrambled, so I thought I’d share some pretty pics of the pansies on my terrace today!

It has been a beautiful Fall day in Atlanta!

Lit Up

This year I was finally able to participate in the Atlanta Beltline Lantern Parade.  I’ve been dying be in it for the last couple of years, but we were always out of town.


“Cool,” you say. “So what is the Atlanta Beltline?”


Graffiti art on one of the tunnels

To ‘splain a little more, about five years ago, the City of Atlanta took over a series of paths and old railway lines more-or-less encircling the city, and turned it into a paved walking/biking/skating trail and greenspace called the Atlanta Beltline.


Walking home from Inman Park down the Beltline.

It’s very practical as it provides a safe path to walk from my loft over to the little neighborhood of bars and restaurants in Inman Park.


It’s very fabulous in that it’s studded with outdoor art installations, musicians throwing down impromptu concerts, fortune tellers, trail-side community yoga classes, and a fun, vital horde of 20 through 50-somethings running, walking, skating and biking in a giant festive Mardis Gras of humanity nearly every evening (complete with a lovely assortment of dogs, btw: from tiny puppies in purses to giant Irish Wolfhounds towing kids on skateboards.)


Mini concert from two very gifted musicians hanging out on the Beltline

“Er, well, that’s nice, but what about this Lantern Parade?” you continue.

The Lantern Parade is hosted the first Saturday after Labor Day each year by the Krewe of Grateful Gluttons, and kicks off a two month Art on the Beltline program that runs through November.


Almost 30,000 people showed up for this year’s parade.  Lanterns of every style and color danced from wires and poles clutched by costumed revelers; who walked, jogged, skipped and danced to the accompanying “alternative” marching bands.


I went with a bunch of friends as the (unofficial) Krewe of the Sultry Sirens.


We chose an “under the sea” theme, complete with mermaids, a giant crab, a ambiguous character based on Pirates of the Caribbean, some jellyfish lanterns and lots of glowing neon and sparkles.


It was about a 2-mile route, following the Beltline from Krog Street Market off of Irwin Street all the way over to Piedmont Park in Midtown.


“And did you have fun,” you ask, smiling as if you already know the answer.

I had a stinkin’ blast.


Come on, Costumes!  Costumes covered in twinkly lights! Day-glow Lanterns! Friends!  Sparkly stuff!  Music!  Dancing!  Drinks after at the Highlander!

Hog Heaven.

We were well and truly lit.

Faith means living with uncertainty – feeling your way through life, letting your heart guide you like a lantern in the dark.
– Dan Millman

Something’s Brewing

Last night, my dear friends Dana and  Beth joined me for a special fundraising dinner, held at possibly one of the coolest-named places in the galaxy:

Dr. Bombay’s Underwater Tea Party.

::sigh:: how awesome is that?
Dr. Bombay’s is a little “dive” tearoom way down McLendon on the backside of Little Five Points, on the Southeast side of Atlanta. It’s almost painfully charming, with book-lined walls, cozy nooks, mismatched furnishings and a ceiling hung with a wild assortment of lanterns and umbrellas of every size, shape and color imaginable. They serve high tea (if you pre-order), little sandwiches, scones, clotted cream, quiche and other delicacies.

  Tonight they were hosting a dinner to raise funds for their non-profit, the Learning Tea, an organization whose mission is to provide scholarships to impoverished young women in India; furnishing tuition, living expenses and a safe and stable home so the girls can complete university studies, opening their futures to better opportunities through education. We started the night with delicious samosas drizzled with a Tamarind Herb Sauce.
This was followed by our entree, served on cute little TV dinner-style trays. Jeera Aloo Bhaji (potatoes with cumin and spices), Vegetable Numaish (vegetables and baby corn) with rice and Naan. Dessert was a mango-studded sorbet with fresh whipped cream. The organizers ran a social media contest for the night’s best photo using their hashtag, #webrewscholars. Can I tell you how thrilled I was to have my annoying habit of photographing my food and everything around me not only sanctioned, but encouraged?

One of my photos took second place!
Since “man” (and his dinner dates) cannot live on tea alone, Dana had the forethought to run across the street to the neighborhood wine shop and grab a couple of bottles of bubbly to wash down our spicy repast.

Who’d a thunk, but introducing a little bubbly turned it all into a party! We invested in copious amounts of raffle tickets (winning nothing but our joy in giving), drank our champers, posted, giggled, gossiped and enjoyed a truly fabulous meal. Kuddos to our chefs and the tearoom staff.

So wonderful to see my good friends while helping the inspiring folks at at Dr. Bombay’s and the  Learning Tea!

To learn more about the admirable work done by the volunteers at The Learning Tea, visit their site at www.thelearningtea.com

“The proper, wise balancing of one’s whole life may depend upon the feasibility of a cup of tea at an unusual hour.” – Arnold Bennett, How to Live on 24 Hours a Day

Cloud storming

I work 723 feet above the city. Sometimes the most amazing views have nothing to do with the ground below. 

 “Different cities visit us daily, they exist in the clouds.” -AntoniaPerdue

Three Things Sunday: July 19, 2015

I’m sure by now, there is little surprise that I have once again missed the mark to contribute to this week’s “Three Things Thursday: An Exercise in Gratitude,” the lovely Nerd In The Brain’s weekly challenge.

At least, in a timely, Thursday-ish fashion.

However, one of the things I most happy about is:

I have been lost without lil' MacCie.

I have been lost without lil’ MacCie.

I have my computer back!  Yippee!!!

I was completely happy to let my husband use my laptop for an editing project the past three weeks (especially since it was a gift from him to begin with) but if you saw my few miserable attempts to blog via iphone, you will understand my overwhelming joy to get the little fella back.

Otherwise, it’s been a loooooonnnnggg week.  I’m really missing my friend and colleague (who received a well-deserved transfer and promotion), all made tougher by the fact I’m alone in the office now, doing a job best meant for 3 people, so I’m stressy and scrambling most of the time.

I have to keep smackin’ myself upside the head to remember that my life overflows with good things and I should stop the kvetching and focus on all the incredible positives instead of the minute amount of negative.

For instance, here is a spectacular sunset, viewed from my terrace on Monday:



Who wouldn’t feel saturated with color and sky after seeing that?  It leaves little room for the petty crap.

Tuesday, my dear friend Heidi strolled over on the Beltline and drug me out of my “poor little me” funk and down to my favorite bar, the Highlander, for dinner and some beverages.  Saw some other friends, vented, listened, smiled, giggled, laughed out loud: got myself back.

The walk back, on such a sultry summer night, was filled with lovely twinkly lights from the city spread out before us.

Ponce de Leon Avenue - Bank of America Building in the background and Ponce City Market to the left.

Ponce de Leon Avenue – Bank of America Building in the background and Ponce City Market to the left.


Lights of North Avenue, looking towards Midtown.

The walk and talk did a lot to put me in a better frame of mind.

So, I would love to share another view from my terrace – looking down instead of out.

Gerbera Daisies

Gerbera Daisies

Petunias and Snaps!

Petunias and Snaps!

Despite the recent oppressive heat, my flowers are exploding into gorgeousness, reminding me that there are things to be grateful for all around me. 

I simply need to open my eyes to find some happy.

Thank you as always, Nerd in the Brain, for the weekly reminder!


Three Things Thursday: Thursday April 2, 2015

My contribution of some of this week’s happy moments to the lovely Nerd In the Brain’s Three Things Thursday…

because it’s pretty sad not to take time to be happy!
2015-04-01 22.57.21
When I was out running errands last Saturday, I stopped by Intown Hardware and visited my favorite chicken, who lives there in their Swanky-Chickens-for-Wealthy-Hipsters Coop (co-op?) I named her Aretha Franklin, because much like the famous singer, she has quite an amazing hat.

Lamentably, my husband will not allow me to have a chicken, so I must admire her from afar.

2015-04-01 22.59.44
We compounded the beautiful day with brunch at Bantam Pub, which they were kind enough to build in the driveway of my loft complex. The food is wildly delicious. We soaked up sunshine and sweet breezes on the patio while enjoying Eggs Benedict with grilled salmon and bloody marys for me and a fried egg-topped lamb burger and some bourbon for my husband.

2015-04-01 23.00.43
As the lovely warm Spring day chilled into the evening, my husband pulled out the chimenea and built a cozy little campfire lounge in the backyard.

I’ll keep him.

Thanks, NITB, for the weekly gratitude reminder, and happy upcoming weekend to you all!

Always “After” Me Lucky Charms – The Tardy Paddy’s Party

11008454_10153702145578626_3595862338279555338_nEverybody loves a party, but there is something about a Southerner that makes them reach lunge for any excuse to celebrate.

We’ve always focused on our Scottish ancestry (David’s a Douglas and I’m a Ferguson) but I do, at least, have some Irish heritage as well (McCormick on my Daddy’s side, should anyone require legitimacy.)

Just knowing us and our obsession with entertaining should have removed any minutia of surprise from the minds of friends and family when I announced we were adding St. Paddy’s Day to our list of annual gatherings.

After all, while based on a Irish religious observance, the modern holiday is truly an American celebration.

For us, an excuse to shake off the winter “blahs,” invite over a bunch of good friends, serve up a mess of great food and drink and enjoy a little festivity! (And the perfect excuse to dig out the green wig I bought years ago for another St. Patrick’s party)

March 17th, the actual St. Patrick’s Day, was out – it was mid-week and I had an enormous event at work, so we settled on a Post-Paddy Party the following weekend.

I love researching and designing menus, so I did some digging and came up with a Gaelic-inspired repast – thanks to some inspirational food blogs (please click through for the recipes):

Grab a plate and a cup!

Grab a plate and a cup!

Irish Guinness Lamb Stew100_1791

Cheddar and Guinness Fondue  with dunk-able ham cubes, croutons, apples and fresh veggies

Stuffed Baby Red Potatoes with Cheese and Bacon

Smoked Salmon Dip  served with assorted crackers

Kale and Spinach Greek Yogurt dip served with European Cucumber chips. (I bought mine at Trader Joe’s but click the link for a delicious home-made version.)

Jeeves, our trusty alligator butler, offered revelers a "Lucky Charm" libation at the door

Jeeves, our trusty alligator butler, offered revelers a “Lucky Charm” libation at the door

For bevs, we had our usual offering of red and white wines, a selection of Irish beers (Harp, Guinness) and a little sparkler I whipped up with fresh mango juice, cava and a dash of Emerald Green Tropical Punch Gatorade (shameful, I know, but the color gave it the zingy tone I was looking for).

Some lovely supplements to the spread were brought by friends:

Dana's homemade Irish Soda bread (complete with holographic butterfly - he likes to add that "extra touch."

Dana’s homemade Irish Soda bread (complete with holographic butterfly – he likes to add that “extra touch.”

Laura and Paul's tasty Guinness chocolate cake with Bailey's Irish Cream Icing! (and holographic butterfly - Dana had an extra.)

Laura and Paul’s tasty Guinness chocolate cake with Bailey’s Irish Cream Icing! (and holographic butterfly – Dana had backup.)

And we dug in, drank up and had a wonderful time!  Kudos to David for the spectacular Irish Stew!

Gathered in the kitchen enjoying Irish Lamb Stew and soda bread

Gathered in the kitchen, tucking into some Irish Lamb Stew and soda bread

Paddy's Party players!

Some of our Paddy’s Party players!

Enjoying the nosh!

Enjoying the nosh!

Someone always has to play with the kiddy toys...

Someone always has to play with the kiddy toys…

Some, more than others.

Some, more than others.

Happy hosts! That's me in the green wig.  (any excuse)

Happy hosts! That’s me in the green wig. (any excuse)

We had an amazing time – blasting Irish party tunes, talking, laughing, telling stories way into the wee hours.  Absolutely fantastic party.

And then there was the after party math.  ::sigh::

the afterparty

the 5 a.m. clean up party

The wee green beastie retired again til next year

And the wee green beastie is retired again til next year

Slàinte mhath, y’all!