Baxter Bark Twice

Do as I say, never as I do

Good to Know Vol. III

Posted by AllieB on November 7, 2013

Oh hey. I don’t think there was a Good to Know Vol I or II, but I wanted to give myself a head start. Herewith: some pearls of wisdom, observant observations, and a corgi. And a Hilary.

1. Happy Birthday, HILARY. Have y’all met Allary? She is Allie + Hilary. This freaks me out in a big way.

Alhi

 I feel like my eyes are messed up. What is happening. DO NOT WANT!

2. Jason Isbell’s album Southeastern: buy it.

3. If you ever tire of lighting your money on fire or throwing twenties in the garbage, by all means spend some time among the items displayed in the Sephora check-out line. It will have the same affect.

4. There’s a reason southern women are so pretty and non-weathered: it’s because they aren’t ravaged by northeastern winters every year. Winter is way harsh on the epidermis, and I’m already on the offensive. First, Yu-Be Moisturizing Skin Cream. I’m a sucker for all-purpose moisturizers, especially ones made in other countries without the pesky FDA to approve them – this one comes from Japan. It’s not at all greasy and kind of reminds me of Carmex without being too Carmex-y. Good for hands, face, cuts, burns, etc etc etc. Second, Benefit Watt’s Up. Good bye ghoulish, ghostly winter pallor – helloooo glowing snow bunny! It’s a highlighter for your face. Use with blush/bronzer and you’ll glow like a worm.

collage makeup

Come at me, Motha Nature

5. I originally had my your/you’re grammar peeve for #5, but I’ve decided to let it go. Your welcome.

6. Kale. UGH I am so over kale. But even I know how dumb it would be to not eat it on principle (I have principles?!), and my preferred method of consumption is via chip. Kale chips are the bomb.edu. I don’t eat them because they are nutritious; I eat them because they are delicious. But heed me on this: said chips should only be consumed in the presence of someone whom you trust implicitly, someone you know will say, “yo, you’ve got something in your teeth” because, after this leafy snack, you will have a whole garden of kale in your chompers. What’s not in your teeth will be on your shirt – this can be hard to spot if you’re wearing a dark color, just FYI. Maybe no kale chips on a first date.

7. I was the only female in my subway car this morning. I counted 35 dudes, give or take, and then me. That’s weird, right?? I thought that was weird.

8. I cannot say enough wonderful things about the author Bill Bryson. I realize that his books, on on the outset, might not seem terribly exciting, but they ARE – he can make boring, random, pointless crap absolutely delightful. I just started his new book, One Summer: America, 1927 and not only have I already laughed outloud many times, I have also learned a lot. I love laughing and learning! Nerd.

9. Do you follow Humans of New York? DO it. Do it now: Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, buy the book. It is my favorite thing on the internet.

10. The 33 Dumbest Things That Have Ever Happened is pretty entertaining. Upsetting, but entertaining.

Jack's best friend's emergency:

11. I’m only on 11?

12. THIS corgi. I just keep looking at him and smiling. So regal.

corgi

 Sprawled. Credit: FlemBot

13. Speaking of ole FlemBot, I wound up dressing up for Halloween after all.While I am not a particular fan of Grateful Dead, I felt okay dressing up as Sugar Magnolia because I know some of the words to the song. Plus, I love a floral domepiece. Halloween in NYC is a spectacle. I feel like everyday could be Halloween in this city, but on October 31 people achieve a whole new level of freak.

scarlett begonias sugar magnolia

Scarlet Begonias & Sugar Magnolia, y’all

14. Make this on Sunday and have it for lunch all week: Fall Orzo Salad with Butternut Squash, Bleu Cheese, and Pomegranate Seeds. The recipe doesn’t mention the pomegranate seeds, that’s BBT’s Top Secret Ingredient. And by BBT’s I mean Fresh & Co., the place where I purchased the salad yesterday. It was so delicious and it really does seem easy to make, so I goog’ed the recipe and that one’s pretty close. I don’t know what pepitas are – perhaps use pumpkin seeds instead.

Cooking tips are not really under my purview…I should probably leave the recipe talk to the 4,968,999 cooking blogs out there. Hey, look – I have a camera and I heated up some pre-made chocolate chip cookies! People should see this! And don’t EVEN get me started on the fashion let’s-take-a-picture-of-me-in-my-outfit sites…..I feel like, since I have a blog (www.baxterbarktwice.com), I have free rein to judge other people who have blogs. I gotta say, I’m pretty unimpressed. The Bill of Rights is great and I do love America, but there are a lot of people whose right to Freedom of Speech should absolutely be revoked.

15. I love a good cityscape, and NYC never lets me down.

nyc sunrise

Yesterday morning’s sunrise. Prob spent longer taking/enhancing/posting this pic than I did actually running. #priorities

16. Sixteen Candles, Sweet Sixteen, 16 Handles….ok yeah, I’m done.whiteflag

I hope you all have really great Thursdays. Me, I have a packed night of plans – a quick stop at the salon for some personal primping, an art show, dinner at Pylos with some gal pals…you know, just L-I-V-I-N’

Baxter, out

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The 8th Sign of the Apocalypse

Posted by AllieB on October 31, 2013

It is neither famine nor earthquake, or any of that other apocalyptic stuff, that has me concerned…it is the confirmed, reputably-reported WINE SHORTAGE. I was hesitant to write about this – I imagine droves of people causing riots at liquor stores, brawling over who gets the last case of The Pinot Project. Perhaps not, but you better believe when this all becomes a real thing, I will be prepared and you will be thirsty.

There’s just not enough wine in the world, says Morgan Stanley, and the problem is only going to get worse.

I feel like a ghost just passed thru me – that is some scary stuff.

Speaking of scary….HAPPY HALLOWEEN!! I have no costume, and I feel like Scrooge. Maybe I should have dressed up as Scrooge?? I couldn’t get excited about anything, and now I feel left out. Woe is me. At least some people get it right…herewith, my two favorite costumes, ever:

The Donk as Werewolf of London. I am terrified yet fascinated

The Donk as Werewolf of London. Incredible

WaWa never disappoints...Bone Appetit (credit: Swardina)

WaWa never disappoints…Bone Appetit! (credit: Swardina)

Haters gonna hate: Blake Lively is not a new addition to My List. I have accepted her hotness – she’s really so attractive one can’t even be jealous; she’s inhuman. However, I can fault her for being a moron, and I think it would be in her best interest to stop talking. Stand there with your glorious hair, pouty pout, the bod that defies science, and keep that yapper shut. Blake’s been chosen as the new L’Oreal spokesperson and recently had a publicist-free interview with Vogue U.K. about her beauty/fashion/livelihood tips.

I don’t really need a personal trainer, or watch what I eat. I can’t start the day without a hot chocolate, or finish it without a few squares of dark chocolate. Its good for my mood!

Words we can all live by, truly.

A&K came last weekend, and it was the best. We ate delicious meals (Market Table & Locanda Verde were highlights) and laughed a lot and Amy took selfies. I’m a big fan of the hometown team…

BBT - K - A - E Rock - Lady Liberty

BBT – K – A – E Rock – Lady Liberty

Today is the 31st of October, so tomorrow is the first of November. That is whack. Man, I don’t write for one week and totally lose all my mojo…I’m just really shaken up by this wine shortage.

#mojo

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Buckhead Betty Meets Holly Hamptons

Posted by AllieB on October 17, 2013

What up!

I never got around to this last summer, so I’d like to take a minute and discuss a place of which I’ve grown quite fond. The Hamptons, to me at least, always seemed like a surreal, self-contained world of glamour and glitz and the sporadic sensational murder (credit: Revenge), and, while this wasn’t an entirely inaccurate perception, it’s not what I’m talking about – I hate glitz and murder is messy. It turns out, amid all that silliness, there are beautiful, pristine beaches and towny dive bars situated on the most picturesque real estate imaginable.

The off-season, obviously, is the ideal time to avoid the fracas, but you really just have to know where to go. This summer E Rock, Moo, Flembot, CammyCakes and I enjoyed a lovely meal and substantial servings of rose at Surf Lodge – there is a lot going on at Surf Lodge. I totally get why: the setting is perfect, the restaurant is beautiful, the people watching is entertaining…but when we maxed out on pink wine and folks in ridiculous sunglasses, we headed up the hill to Montauket, an old bed and breakfast. While I do not recommend staying or eating there, I implore you to go to this place for a Budweiser at sunset. Our tenure on this overlook was perhaps my favorite part of the entire weekend. The Hamptons, when you’re not sweating your face off in Talkhouse, or sitting in miles of bumper-to-bumper traffic, is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. For lack of better or more accurate phrase: it’s almost magical. ZERO Filters. None, nada.

montauket

boating

sunset

sunset over Montauket

shadowssss

Main Beach – East Hampton

photo 2

Montauk Point

Montauk lighthouse

Montauk lighthouse

Too mas? I exercised a great deal of discretion; I wanted to share way more than that. I’m telling you…it’s magical. And this isn’t totally out of left field – I spent last weekend out there. Gimme a house on Lily Pond Lane and a Jeep Wagoneer and I’ll never ask for anything ever again. Except maybe a new watch because I smashed the face on mine.

Now that I am 30 (say it loud, say it proud!), I am very conscientious about skin maintenance. Lotions, serums, facials – it’s an expensive venture, but I want preserve my fresh-faced youthfulness for as long as possible. I’ve got a few tricks in my arsenal, but I can assure you that were you to ask, “what is your skincare regimen?” at no point in the step-by-step procedure would I say, “and then I put a bra on my face.”

This is a face bra.

This is a face bra.

The Japan Shop invented it in a bid to combat smile lines and prevent premature ageing.

I am pretty skeptical about this facial bustier. Maybe wear a hat and buy some La Mer instead.

CitiBikes launched in NY last spring, and they’ve become crazy popular. With hundreds of docking stations around the city, it’s an incredibly easy and fun (?) way to get around while avoiding the stuffiness of the subway and the mania of the fraffic. Now that it’s finally about to get cold, I decided it was a good time to sign up for an annual membership. My timing is typical – I know this – but I’m so excited!! There are three stations within .03 miles of my front door. People will wonder: “Where’s Allie?” and someone will answer “Allie? She’ll be here soon, she’s riding her bike.” Honestly, I will use it all the time to zip between my ‘hood and the West Vill and over to the east side. I only have to use it 10 times to get my money’s worth – I can manage that over the next 365 days. I am not going to be a bike commuter: 1. it’s too far 2. helmet hair 3. red-faced Allie should never meet Corporate Allie. Jordan/Mom, I promise I’ll get a helmet.

bday Sister and I rode them in June. I was a total pansy at first, but I got the hang of it – just look at that breeziness. A&K – bring your biking gear!

On a serious note, thank you all so much for your kind words about the loss of our beloved Missy. A lot of people had their own favorite Missy memories, and it was very special to have some of you share. I know she’s up in doggy heaven, eating all the fancy cheese she wants and playing fetch in the heaven-equivalent of the Chattahoochee. I imagine it’s much cleaner where she is.

Happy 17th day of October. Do you have your Halloween costume yet?!? I’m looking at you, Casey Wa-wa.

princess wa wa

That’s a high quality picture. Man, I really miss my Blackberry.

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Missy & Me

Posted by AllieB on October 8, 2013

It is with heavy heart (and swollen eyes) that I share with you some very sad news: Missy Baxter, our beloved black lab and BBT mascot, passed away on Sunday. She lived a full, 14-year life and was maybe the most loved dog there ever was. I’m sorry to tell you that it doesn’t matter how old they are or how much warning you have…it still really sucks when they go. Reasons for writing and sharing this tribute are twofold; I need a way of coping, and I want to celebrate the very happy life of a very happy dog.

Missy and I were kindreds. I lived at home for awhile in my mid-twenties, and she and I became very close. We spent untold hours on the couch watching tv – together we endured the highs and lows of the folks of Dillon, TX (Missy was a particular fan of Coach Taylor and Tim Riggins, just like me), and she loved Friends as much as I did. She could be something of a diva, but when it was the two of us she totally adapted my schedule of not having a schedule: we stayed up til the wee hours and slept thru mid morning. We just got each other.

missy collage

Missy was an incorrigible food thief; she really had no shame. Do y’all remember the cheese heist? It was Pal, Hilbilly, Swedge, JTomm, my parents and me, sitting around our coffee table enjoying some wine and charcuterie, and in slinks Missy…she circled the table, literally salivating, honing in on one particular $18/lb goat cheese & brie combo that I had begged my mom to buy. We joked about Missy’s impressive food-snatching skills, it never occurring to us she might have the gall to do anything while we sitting right there, when CHOMP. The entire block of cheese disappeared before our eyes. The whole thing, down the hatch in one gulp.

Missy participated in some alternative therapeutic methods in the last few months - this was when she got laser treatment for her joints. She also participated in acupuncture and water aerobics.

When she was older, Missy got laser treatment for her joints. She also participated in acupuncture and water aerobics.

I believe Missy had opposable thumbs that she employed only in our absence. I once interrupted her enjoying a large, Costco-sized container of almonds. Said container had not yet been opened – of this I would swear on my life – but she somehow managed to turn the lid and break thru the aluminum seal. On this occasion she proudly showed off what she’d done: “Bet you’re wondering how I managed this, aren’t ya?!” with a saucy wag of tail and toss of head. I’m still wondering.

she got the paper every morning for most of her life, starting when she was a teeny tiny puppy and the paper was bigger than she was

Her only defeat was the 5lb wheel of Stilton blue cheese relatives send us every year from Willams Sonoma. I stupidly left it out, and Missy helped herself. I came home to a very queasy pup and 3/4 of a ravaged, smelly cheese wheel. She looked at me, not guiltily but almost accusingly: “Why did you leave this out when you knew YOU KNEW I would get into it…I hate you, I hate that cheese, and now I’m gonna puke” and then she puked. Missy loved cheese, but I don’t think it loved her back.

party pooped

Perhaps the most bizarre instance of poaching took place on Christmas Eve several years ago. My sisters, mom, and dad We do a lot of cooking for Christmas and had left out a few projects in medias res when we went to church. Obviously knowing Missy’s penchant for counter-top pillaging, we put all food/implements out of her reach…so we thought. We came home to three large knives that had each been part of dish preparation – one butcher, two serrated – licked clean on the living room floor. Missy was abnormally slow to greet us, and, given this possible crime scene, we called for her in earnest, looking for trails of blood or worse…..we found her in my sister’s bathroom happily eating her way through the trashcan, oblivious to the fact that she nearly starred in her very own slasher film.

Missy listening attentively as I explain the meaning of Christmas

Missy listening attentively as I explain the meaning of Christmas

I miss her so much, and my heart breaks thinking that she won’t be there when I next go home. I know she is in doggy heaven having the best time doing her favorite things: playing ball; swimming; eating leftovers, brownies, and snot-filled tissues; flirting shamelessly with anything male that moves and riding around shotgun with all the windows down. We’ll be telling her stories for decades to come and there will always be a Missy-shaped placed in our hearts. We love you forever, Missy Misdemeanor!

the happiest dog

the happiest dog

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Anything you can do, I can do almost or equally as well

Posted by AllieB on October 3, 2013

I’ve mastered the subways; I emerge from underground and know instinctively which way is N/S/E/W; you should see me weave thru the herds of cattle throngs of people on the sidewalk; I stuck out my tongue at a cab driver last week when he violated my right of way – let’s face it, y’all, I’m a New Yawker.

alexandra

a saavy city girl from the very beginning. that’s right – GIRL

While I think we can all agree these are noteworthy accomplishments, I’ve still yet to conquer my Everest: mastering the art/science/I think it might be magic of making dinner reservations. I spent a good chunk of time this week trying to find two restaurants that will impress my high-brow foodie friends, A and K, when they come to visit, and I’m getting the proverbial talk-to-the-hand at every place I’ve tried. I mean, this is like a month in advance! Evidently no one A) knows who I am or B) is aware that I manage a very dated and irrelevant restaurant guide to Atlanta. K&A, how do you feel about dining at 5:30? Actually, wait: who needs restaurants – we’re all talented chefs, why don’t we just cook our own meals!?! And let’s be sure not to have any wine at all.

what would happen if we did either of those things

what would happen if we did either of those things

Obviously, none of us would ever find ourselves in this sort of situation, and I want to be very clear that I am NOT condoning such behavior, but when I saw this I thought I’d better share: The Rules for Calling in Sick When You’re Actually Hungover. Upon completion I found myself wanting to seek out Captain Obvious so I could thank him for sharing such brand new information, but who am I to judge – let’s see what I’ve got:

1. Mind over matter. I am a strong believer in this: stop wallowing and get over it. I am lucky not to get the voms when I am overserved, so I’m sure this is easier said than done…but most of the time I feel like people are just being big babies.

2. Water: it’s not a myth. Water before, during, and after your ill-advised outing will help tremendously. And cold Vitamin Water Zero in the morning is like nectar of the gods.

3. A lot of people say exercise. Me, not so much

4. Oh. I was supposed write a list about how to call in sick when you’re hungover. I don’t really have any tips on that for I hath ne’er done such a thing.

5. Cpt Obvs: 1, BBT: 0

But seriously: drink water.

Ok, this is weird, right? Mediocre-hurdler-turned-bobsledding-hopeful, Lolo Jones, is trying to gain 60 lbs to make “bobsled weight.” Her daily diet includes two 1,365 protein shakes and FOUR double bacon cheeseburgers from McDonald’s. This approach seems flawed. She is literally going to turn into a double bacon cheeseburger…literally. Ehhh, Lolo makes me uncomf – she seems like she’s kind of nuts, if not a little bit delusional:

“My abs are still there,” she said. “I’m still cut, just super solid.”

Yeah, a super solid double bacon cheeseburger…

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, G FORCE!!!!! Remember that time we went to Pakistan? Such adventures we’ve had…I love you!!

incognito in Lahore

incognito in Lahore. also, barefoot. ew

TGIT! Feels good to be back on sched…truthfully, I’ve had a whole week of Thursdays, but I’m glad everyone else is now on my same page.

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