Baxter Bark Twice

Do as I say, never as I do

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Posts Tagged ‘fashion and stuff’

Back to School

Posted by AllieB on September 4, 2014

It happened; it’s over. Summer’s done, and Fall is here. Fall means football – yay! #Gurley4Heisman; Fashion Week – booooo #neveragain; and, at least in NYC, the hottest weather we’ve had all year. Mother Nature, you’re doing it wrong. I was thinking the other day how much I used to love going back to school: finding out your teachers, what boys were in your classes, shopping for school supplies…I wish there was a working world equivalent; I bought a new Moleskine diary yesterday in an effort to reclaim some of the thrill, but Five Star 5-section spiral notebook it is not. Adulthood is the worst.

However, BBT was total weak sauce over the summer, so I can pretend like now I’m back in “school” and my “homework” is to post consistently. Preemptive disclaimer: I was not a straight-A student.

And now watch me exhaust this already tired metaphor:

Home Ec: I had a hunch that Chef Allie existed, and the proof is in the pudding: I’m legit. I finally learned how to chop opinions without going blind (pro tip (or tip I would’ve learned in Home Ec if it had been an option – silly feminists): put them in the fridge til cold, THEN cut – the cold counteracts the tear-causing enzyme or something I don’t know but it works) and now I can properly adhere to recipes because onions, it turns out, are in everything and skipping them can definitely affect the integrity of your final product. And god forbid you affect the integrity of your final product.

In the past week I’ve made Spicy Black Bean Stuffed Peppers (thanks, Pinterest) and Cilantro-Lime Grilled Chicken with Strawberry-Jalapeno Salsa (DomesticateMe is one of my favorites – even before I started cooking her recipes). See links + pics below…you almost can’t tell which is professional and which is mine, except for you totally can – sorry I don’t shoot my meals with a CanonMegaHugeProfesh Camera:

Spicy Black Bean Stuffed Peppers

spicy black bean stuffed peppers

I took the liberty of replacing corn with some avocado and adding more cheese (duh)

Cilantro-Lime Grilled Chicken with Strawberry-Jalapeno Salsa

cilantro-lime chicken with strawberry-jalapeno salsa

I grilled the chicken in my iron grill pan, and thanks to the marinade it was juicy and moist and all of those words that are good re: grilled meats but horrible in every other sense.

English: I am writing every day. I bought a paperback copy of On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King which has anecdotes and exercises and all sorts of things that will poof! make me a published author.

Free Period: I finally installed our Amazon Fire TV this week (credit: CharBaxMaines). The talking remote works incredibly well and now we are ready for the Polar Vortex which will be here from September – April. Joy.

hilary as abominable snowman

PSA: this is Hilary on a good day the abominable snowman, mascot of the Polar Vortex. Beware of the Beast.

I know things are going south when I start throwing the abominable snowman Hilary under the bus – we’re done! And I promise not to post anymore pictures of food I’ve cooked for a full month. But if you want to like message me about what’s coming up next in BBT’s Kitchen, by all means – feel free.

TGIT!

Posted in Arbitrary, Food & Drink | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

50 Shades of Do Not Want

Posted by AllieB on September 25, 2013

Hey guys! On the Effort Scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is standing up and 10 is walking to the kitchen, today’s post is about a 1.25.

50 Shades of Do Not Want: I’ve been over 50 Shades of Grey for awhile now, and, even though I obviously made my way thru all three books, I definitely judge anyone who is still reading them…similarly, I am an equal opportunity indulger of  any and all (red) wine, but even I turn my nose at this: 50 Shades of Grey Wine. There are two varietals: White Silk and Red Satin. That’s disgusting. Also, it’s going for $18/bottle! You could buy two non-embarrassing bottles of malbec for that; this just goes from bad to worse. BBT says: absolutely not.

IT Allie asks: have you downloaded the new iOS 7? Do it. Do it now. It’s like getting a whole new phone! And, given that I’ve actually downgraded to a plain old 4 from a 4S instead of upgrading (April 2k14..!), this is especially exciting for moi. I’ve had zero kinks – just back your shiz up. iTunes Radio is a great addition, and the camera has improved. Everyone also loves the Control Center; the pros abound. Me, I mostly just think it’s really pretty…

ios screen shot

background

I feel v exposed, like I just showed you my bank acct balance or undergarment drawer

-I’ve heard a few things about the fingerprint scanner on the new 5S: cats can do it, hackers figured out to hack it, and…this: You Can Also Unlock the iPhone 5 S with Your  Junk. Y’all, that’s gross.

-Closing out apps is not entirely intuitive – here’s how.

-Have you recently lost your 3rd Kindle? Just me? Well, fear not, because Amazon has released yet another Kindle, the Kindle Fire HDX, complete with a “mayday” button that links to live support 24/7/365, promising a 15 second or less response time. Dang. (Credit: Charlotte!)

Watching: My roommates love The Voice, so it looks like I love The Voice, too. I’m just not sure I’m emotionally equipped to handle it. They draw you in with heart-wrenching backstories of these people want nothing more than to share the gift of music, then they go out on stage, sing their hearts out, and….none of the judges pick them. Although, I do respect the judges for refraining from the pity pick – I’d have a team of losers halfway thru the first audition. I’m such a softie. Modern Family starts back tonight, SNL on Saturday, and T minus 103 hours, give or take, til Homeland Season 3 returns. (It took me almost as long to calculate that number just now)

SHE WOULD: Blake Lively is starting her own GOOPy-sounding company. Boobs Legsly, a moniker that isn’t even legit anymore since she’s morphed into this married class act, is even easier to hate than Gwyneth. Obviously I will read every issue, scoffing at the recipes but diligently saving all of them. It annoys me when people talk about “curating” a lifestyle. I can barely curate my salad from Chop’t*.

GFY, seriously

GFY, seriously

*I actually have a bombass salad order: Spinach, Kale, Fresh Jalapeños, Cucumber, Tomato, Pepper Jack Cheese, FreeBird Ancho Chile Chicken, Tri-Color Quinoa, Low-Fat Spa Greek Yogurt Tzatziki Dressing. I made it up all by myself. FACE.

Fall is here! I really am going to pump the brakes on talking about weather. Elmore Leonard, the renowned novelist who passed away recently, had a list of of 10 Rules for Good Writing:

  1.  Never open a book with weather.

I took a quick look at past BBT posts, and, if you replace “book” with “blog” I’m not doing so hot – same with the other nine. Whatever, I’m a slow learner. Like I was saying: fall is here! I want to swaddle myself in 1,000 sweaters (I like these: Dear Santa/if I budget better); fill my apartment with the aroma of spiced cider (the spiked cider looks good, pretty sure if I had a cabernet candle in my apt I’d have to have a bottle of cabernet open…oh wait); and jump in piles of leaves (don’t need sound and really only need to watch like first ten secs).

 

Happy Wednesday to all of you, and HAPPY FRIDAY to meeee! I’m headed south for a sure-to-be perfect wedding – can wait to see ya, EmilyB (cc: W Port)!

Posted in Arbitrary | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

See and (not) be seen

Posted by AllieB on September 6, 2013

Fashion Week is kind of not my scene. I like to read about it and see pictures in magazines while ensconced in the comfort of my couch; I can do without the overheated, overcrowded tents…in fact I have something of  phobia when it comes to enclosed tents – they catch on fire really easily and then people start panicking and stampeding – it’s a recipe for disaster.

However, given an opportunity to attend during the work day for free is a no-brainer. I went this morning with co-workers to the BCBG Spring 2014 show at Lincoln Center. What’s so overwhelming is the whole blogger (psssh – freakin bloggers) craze and the street style photographers. It’s a whole business now, and I feel like anyone in an open-toed bootie, sporting some sort of domepiece accessory, or carrying a kitschy clutch can be stalked for their picture. Eyepatches, also, will get you some airtime. Oddly,  no one seemed interested in capturing my street style of J.Crew Minnie’s and tank.

Here’s my takeaway: if you are at all hungover under the weather and have even the slightest ambivalence towards crowds, zero personal space, excessive perfume, jarring noises and flashing lights, Fashion Week is not for you. I’d rather go to IKEA in that state than Fashion Week, which, I think, says all you need to know.

One obvious bonus: the celeb spotting.

fashion week collage

The ULTIMATE sighting: Olivia Palermo (never said I had good seats), Heidi Klum (yes that’s her), the crowd awaits

I realize you might not believe that’s Olivia and Heidi, so here is my proof. Giuliana Rancic and Selita Ebanks (??) and Estelle and Jesse Metcalfe were also there. They were much more clear in person…iPhone’s do not zoom well. Olivia is everything I hoped she would be – almost too pretty to look at with a very definite “I am so SO much better than all of you” attitude. And she kept her sunglasses on the whole time. Of course she did. Heidi, quite literally, glows.

The celeb spotting has actually been kind of ridiculous lately: I saw Dustin Hoffman at Whole Foods on Saturday. He and his wife were doing regular old grocery shopping. He was trailing behind her, pulling the buggy, while she asked him questions over her shoulder. He must have responded negatively because she whipped around and goes, “well did you at LEAST get the PARSLEY!?” He didn’t answer but turned and headed off towards the greens. I saw them again when they got in line behind me – I don’t think Dustin recognized me because I was wearing a hat – but I nevertheless felt embarrassed about my items: Newman’s Lemonade (1 gal), mac n cheese, chicken wings (5, sweet chili from the hot bar). Allie…no.

Then, the next day, as I explored my new ‘hood, I walked by Jennifer Connelly and her whole fam. She is stunning. I really like her – she might be in my top 5. You know how I feel about Blood Diamond…and who could forget Career Opportunities?!

Speaking of my new ‘hood….I LOVE it. My quality of life has soared to heights heretofore unseen. Who needs the charm of an old brownstone walk-up when you can live in a high rise with a doorman?? I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to live without a doorman again…unless, maybe, I own the whole building. I can’t stop taking pictures. Do you wanna see some?? Ok. No filters – seriously.

majestic, ain't she

majestic, ain’t she

skyline as seen from Pier 26 (the one I live on)

skyline as seen from Pier 26 (that’s where I live)

sunset over Pier 26

sunset

sunrise

sunrise

I won’t bore you with stories about my move, but you better believe it did not go off without a hitch/multiple hitches.

Praying for a Bulldog W…have a great weekend!

Posted in Arbitrary, Celebs | Tagged: , , , , , | 6 Comments »

The arsonist has oddly shaped feet

Posted by AllieB on August 6, 2013

Happy August 6th! Do you feel as I do, that 2k13 is going by super fast? This summer especially – it’s been a big one: I turned 30…went to Africa…I joined Snapchat…Georgia football kicks off in 24 days…things just keep happening! The mind reels.

To segue from my African adventures to just good ole normal weekly BBT posts, here is a bunch of random stuff – pop culture and what have you.

Watching: Orange is the New Black (exclusively on Netflix). I guess I should say “watched” instead of implying it’s something I’m still doing…I’m already finished. It’s definitely not for everyone, but it’s good – something to note is that it’s created by Jenji Kohan, who brought us the cluster that was Weeds. Do keep in mind that I’m not always right about things and that I often retract my opinions – hey, I’m flaky. But today, right now: BBT says to tune in. Also, look at this list of 23 Surprising Facts about OitNB – I think it might sell it even more.

I happened upon this last night on my yog along the Hudson River…

I saw this exactly as you see it - no enhancement. How?! Sometimes Mother Nature really nails it

I saw this then exactly as you see it now – no enhancement. How?! Sometimes Mother Nature really nails it

Reading: Suffice it to say, I’ve had some time on my hands recently to get through a few books. God bless the wonder that is the Kindle. Here, I even ranked them.

1. Where’d You Go Bernadette – I lol’ed a lot; it’s not your typical novel format, but I LOVED it

2. Beautiful Ruins – modern day movie business combined with 1960’s Italy – it works, I liked this

3. The Engagements – really like J. Courtney Sullivan, this one tracks intertwining stories over several decades

4. The Silent Wife – the dissolution of a relationship handled in a rather interesting way…this, along with many other books, has been heralded as the “next Gone Girl” – I’m not saying that it is, but the comparison didn’t bother as much as it usually does

5. The Cuckoo’s Calling – this crime mystery penned under J.K. Rowling’s pseudonym is really good – I’m always skeptical of authors writing under different names, but this is a page-turner

6. War Brides  – WWII-era historical fiction

What not to read: Revenge Wears Prada. I wanted to quit after like 8 pages, but I forced myself to stick it out for 60 more before I gave it up altogether. Andy is the least likable character ever, and I found myself wanting to go find her and yell at her, and then maybe shove her around a little. Skip it. Fortunately it has not affected my undying devotion to Devil Wears Prada, the movie. That’s all.

Also, I’m going to do a better job managing my Goodreads account – I just downloaded the app! – so if you’re interested in more suggestions you can go here instead of writing me emails (Caro, you’re not the only one). Bookmark it or something. I am interested in reading some more non-fiction and biographies/memoirs, so you may send me emails with suggestions for those.

News from my alter-ego, Alessandra: the discovery of this mascara, VOLUMINOUS by L’Oreal (grey tube w gold cap), is the best thing that’s happened to me in my 15 or so years of wearing makeup. It’s better than Diorshow, 1/4 of the price…pizza for everybody!

SPOTTED: Hugh Jackman and I were at Equinox last Wednesday at 545 am, getting our days started off right. We made eye contact and he smiled – he was smiling at everyone, and my goodness but is he handsome. Then, a couple of hours later as I sat on my desk and ate Fage yogurt with granola, I looked up, and – whaddya know – it’s Hugh on Good Morning America. The following evening K and I (K was in town!!!) saw Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) from Modern Family and his new husband at Commerce. We considered taking a pic with them until we saw some podunk tourists doing it, so we instead engaged his sweet husband in a convo while he waited for Jesse to finish up with silly people who wanted a photo with the famous person. I hope you’ll note that both of these celeb encounters occurred without me doing anything bone-headed. With age does come maturity??

Blindsided by: I am still recovering from the shock that Kate gave birth to a boy. It hadn’t even occurred to me that this was a possibility: Kate would have a princess and she would have hair just as glorious as her mum’s. After some thought, I realized how it was totally typical of classy, level-headed Kate to go ahead and get the heir-to-the-throne out of the way, thereby eradicating any potential pressure or undue criticism from the Royal Fam or the brutal UK tabloids. Well done you, Duchess, on controlling your own biological settings.

dang

this, them, her..

I wish I wrote this: fellow FOMO victim Will Welch offers step-by-step treatment for curing FOMO in this month’s GQ. Spoiler Alert: there’s no cure, but there are coping mechanisms.

Shack Attack: you peeps in ATL are really lucky – Shake Shack is headed to Buckhead in mid-2014. It is hard for me to talk about Shake Shack without going overboard, but it’s…it’s amazing. Yeah, Bocado and HF are great, but Shake Shack is different. And it’s cheap and easy and it’s like heaven in your mouth. So…y’all have got that going for you, which is nice.

Is Tuesday the new Thursday on BBT?? I hope not, I hate Tuesdays.

*re today’s title – I couldn’t come up with anything on my own and Anchorman happened to be on this weekend…really looking forward to #2. Plus, the arsonist really does have oddly shaped feet.

Posted in Arbitrary, Imparting Wisdom, Princess Kate | Tagged: , , , , , | 13 Comments »

BBT’s Guide to Giving: You’re on Your Own

Posted by AllieB on December 11, 2012

To those who responded to my survey….thanks. I don’t know if it’s because I was overwhelmed by so many responses (a pleasant surprise), or because I waited longer than my usual 1.5 day turnaround before doing a post, but I’m feeling the opposite of inspired. I asked about gifts for the holidays, y’all all answered, and I’ll sum it up for you: don’t buy anyone socks, clothes for work, and don’t you DARE enroll ANYONE in a jelly of the month club. Also, three people (3 out of the 63 who participated), specifically mentioned not wanting a Nickelback CD. Look, if you’re concerned a Nickelback CD awaits you beneath the tree on Christmas morning, there are issues with which BBT cannot help. My heart goes out to the %.05 of you facing  this imminent doom. Hey, maybe the world will end on 12/21, and then you won’t even have to worry about practicing your “Omigosh I LOVE IT!” face when you open up an NB CD – fingers crossed! Let’s see, what else…I had some really wonderful answers (some of which I may filch for material in the future and claim as my own original work), but also a fair number of really dumb ones. It is possible I didn’t sense your tones, but I don’t think that’s it. Good news is – it was totally anonymous so no judgement! Just me wondering who the H I’m friends with.

Speaking of the people I am friends with, Hilary wants to show off her new Christmas sweater and would also like your help counting her chins:

Sorry your hardwork is going unrewarded…in the future, I think I’ll stick with surveys pertaining to the complex nature of relationships between males and females because that is where my expertise really kicks in. I honestly do feel badly if I’ve let you down – tell you what, if you’re really at a loss re: gift giving, or are just that curious about the results, shoot me an email and I’ll send over some highlights.

Instead of a survey, I’m going to borrow a section from my favorite weekly tabloid, UsWeekly: What’s In My Bag??

1. the bag. I just bought it, and I’m obsessed – thank you, Pinterest. I’d been looking for a new NYC bag for months, and this is perfect. LOVE.

2. umbrella. This is always in my purse when I do not need it; it’s never there when I do

3. earphones (2) – one is the new ear bud from Apple that of course doesn’t stay in my right ear any better than the old, but they suffice for a stroll; the others are the super cute kind that hook over your ear…these are for my yogs/when I am trying to lure members of the opposite sex

4. butterfly clips (9) of various sizes; two hair ties. Given the number of hair-related thingies I carry around, it’s strange if not inexcusable that I am often so unkempt

5. one day I hope to go altogether purseless like Lucy (this seems promising, given the amount of crap I carry around), but for now I’m just walletless – Metro card, *$’s card, work ID, check card, license. My new bag has a perfect place for these – wallet, schwallet.

6. Kindle. It is my most prized possession, I go no where without this thing

7. padlock. I’m currently the member of a pretty sketchy gym – I joined on a whim with a Groupon during Hurricane Sandy because I really wanted to take a shower (they were, of course, closed throughout Hurricane Sandy), and I’ve got 10 days left in my membership. I look forward to not lugging around a lock that weighs 5 lbs. Equinox, here I come.

8. the large blue pouch clearly has in it all the things that you are not allowed to see. My bag – it’s full of secrets…!

9. Vaseline (2) – obvi

10. everything else: gum, gloss, Sabre shades (possibly the most durable sunglasses on the planet), arm band for iPhone (my shuffle is on the DL right now – I hate running with the full size)

11. duh, my work Blackberry. I didn’t downgrade; I’m using my iPhone for the pic. I thought about this oversight on the subway and hurried to correct the omission. God forbid.

That was fun. Don’t you feel like you know me better? Minus all the stuff that’s in the blue pouch…curious much?

DOGS ARE DRIVING CARS. Please click thru and watch this video – even if you only watch like 15 seconds of it, for which you don’t even really need sound, this is the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. And I’m not making it up – source is TIME magazine, so it’s legit. Y’all know I don’t talk about vids unless it’s worth your while…plus, it’s in New Zealand and who doesn’t love the Kiwis?  Admittedly, I haven’t watched more than 39 seconds of it, but it was the best 39 seconds of anything I’ve seen in awhile…and now I’m watching it again.

I’m worried that you aren’t going to watch it – here’s a screenshot:

 I die.

THE DUCHESS IS WITH CHILD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BBT is could not be more thrilled. What if she gives birth on my birthday??? What if I am asked to be a godparent??? She’s going to be an adorable preggo person, and I hope she gets well soon. There’ve been a lot of strange things surrounding her pregnancy thus far, and I’m not going to talk about any of them. PLUS, since Kate is with child this means I can completely ignore the fact Jessica Simpson is also – unless she starts to blow up….and here we go again.

And, in that same ALL-CAPS vein, CONGRATS to my big sister Charlotte who’s been working her a** off and has been rewarded as such – can’t wait to see what ends up happening..! And I’m happy to weigh-in where needed; I’m known for being incredibly decisive…as always, it is a pleasure being related to you.

Lastly, did I mention that I saw the van up here a few weeks ago? There she was, just chillin in Chinatown. Wherever I go, so, too, goes the van.

 

Posted in Arbitrary | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »