It Was A Murder Mystery Night

26 Jul

Murder Mystery Dinner

This was definitely a night I’ll never forget.

Let me start by saying, a friend and I decided to go to a murder mystery dinner since we had never been to one before.  I love trying things I’ve never experienced before so I was all for it.

The first thing that threw us off guard was the location of this place.  We didn’t really pay much attention to it until after we purchased the tickets.  The cross streets threw us off a little because neither of us could figure out what was in that location other than old buildings in the “rough” part of town.

Come to find out, we were right!  Omg.  I’ll never know how they can get people to come to this location in the first place other than the fact that these people don’t all know about this part of town—until they get there and it’s too late by the time they realize it.

Homeless shelter.

There’s a homeless shelter across the street one way and there’s a park across the street the other way where the drunks and crack-heads mingle.  It’s definitely a part of town I wouldn’t think to go to for a dinner theater.

On the night of the dinner, the amazing part was when I pulled into the parking lot behind the building where the dinner was held and saw the cars and people all fancied up in suits, ties, and dresses—but look directly across the street and you see a complete contrast.  WHAT?!  Two different worlds side-by-side.

Don’t get me wrong—I’m not opposed to the homeless shelter—and the drunks and crack-heads have a right to mingle where they want to.  I just didn’t expect to pay so much for a dinner ticket to a play in this area in an abandoned building turned into a dinner room that looked like a big warehouse of a bingo hall.

When we arrived there, we all waited in line to get our picture taken in 1950’s-style accessories they dolled us up into since it was a 50’s-themed play.  But they weren’t going to charge us 50’s-themed prices for the pictures though!!  They seriously were selling the photos for $20 a piece after the show was over.  I could have had someone take a picture for me with my digital camera for free!

And don’t get me started on the food!

I don’t have a clue almighty what in the world I was eating.  (Anything you see in quotes is strictly because I still don’t know if you can even call it that!)

  • Let’s start with the “bread basket”—a loaf of generic bread sliced down the middle.  Seriously?!   Did we really just pay for this?!

  • Let’s move on to the “second course”—the “salad & dressing.”  First of all, the dressing was in packets.  Packets, I say!  Where am I??????  To top it off, my favorite dressing only came in fat-free and the other two options didn’t look so appealing.  So I grabbed the fat-free Ranch and toppled it onto my salad.  Let’s just say the entire thing tasted like grass with water.  So I only ate one bite and I pushed it to the side.  Done.
  • By now I’m scared to see what the “main entrée” looks like.  A person came to “take our order” at our table.  I ordered “chicken parmigiana.”  CAN YOU SEE THE SLOP THEY BROUGHT OUT ON A PLATE TO MY TABLE!!  No way!  I can make a dinner plate at home better than that!  It tasted just like it looked, too.
Me

The bread and salad I couldn’t bring myself to finish.

During this whole time, the “play” was going on.  I was completely lost as to what was happening at all.  We could barely hear them talking on the microphones.

This was an interactive “dinner theater.”  Each table was a team of 10 people.  I refused to be our team captain because I was so baffled as to where we were in the first place!  Someone else volunteered.

We were supposed to get up and ask questions and discuss the play with the other diners and the actors to find out “who dunnit.”  We could “bribe” the “actors” with fake money, too, for more information.

I didn’t get up to interact with anyone since I didn’t know what to ask anyway because I could barely hear anything that was going on or keep up with it all.  Come to find out—one clue was that the “killer” did not even know they were the “killer.”

My friend and I only stayed for two hours because we just couldn’t take it anymore.  We had no idea how long this play was going to last—so, needless to say, we never did find out who the “killer” was since we left early.  AND WE LEFT HUNGRY!!!

My friend and I did have some good laughs throughout the entire thing though because we just couldn’t believe the entire experience we just encountered from beginning to end.  All we could do was look at each other and laugh.  Let the good times roll!

So, if you have nothing else to do today, give a murder mystery dinner a try if you’ve never been to one before—especially if you like the interaction of trying to find out “who dunnit.”  You may come across a pretty decent one—and, if not, just laugh your way through it like we did.  At least it gets you out of the house.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  You never know what life is going to throw at you next, so try to find the humor in it all.

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A Beautiful Victorian Mansion

19 Jul

Victorian Mansion

How I just LOVE the Victorian era.  The first time I ever laid eyes on an actual Victorian mansion it overwhelmed me with so much emotion.

Though I’ve been to this mansion many times before, the very first time I saw this house a few years ago was the first time I’d ever laid eyes on a Victorian home in person.  I was so nervous on the drive up I could barely contain myself in the car.

I remember as I rounded the corner and saw this massive beauty for the first time, it almost brought me to tears.  I was frozen and couldn’t move.  My eyes were trying to take in so much.

Not only was it HUGE, it was Victorian—built sometime in the 1800’s.  Oh, my word how I fell in love—and that was just with the outside of the home.  I still hadn’t made it to the inside of the house yet.  I could only imagine what was in store for me.

Be still my heart.  Pure beauty!!

As much as I’ve read about this era over the years and collected Victorian pictures and had anything Victorian I could possibly get my hands on—you
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Chicken Bacon Cheddar Philly

12 Jul

Chicken Philly Sandwich

Made with chicken, bacon, cheddar cheese, onion, peppers, and ranch dressing; served with onion rings.

Today was a bright, beautiful, sunny, and fabulous day!  Though I didn’t have the highway all to myself today, I enjoyed my drive nonetheless as I was on my way to enjoy some much-needed girl time.  With drinks, lunch, and a good game today—how could I go wrong?

I tried something new on the menu today—a chicken bacon cheddar philly sandwich.  Once I smothered the ranch dressing all over it, I pretty much devoured the entire thing.  It was that good!

So, if you have nothing else to do today, have a day out with friends and try a chicken philly sandwich out on the town or get creative and make yourself one at home.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  There’s nothing like introducing yourself to a variety of new menu items that pop up out of nowhere.

I Love Seeing A Rainbow

5 Jul

Rainbow

It rarely happens but when it does I’m just in awe at the sight of a pretty rainbow—and this was HUGE one!  It looked even better when I was a few miles away on the highway because there was this fabulous view of the entire thing.  Wow!  As luck would have it, I was headed right for it bright and early on this particular morning.  I’m getting closer and closer.

But, of course, by the time I get where I’m going, park, and get out of the car—the rainbow is right there and the view is not the same.  So it doesn’t have quite the same effect when it’s all up in your face and then there are buildings and whatnot everywhere—because you can’t get an entire picture of it.  But what I did see was gorgeously pretty nonetheless.

So from this angle, I couldn’t get the entire rainbow on camera.  Naturally, from the highway further back it would have been a magnificent shot—but I wouldn’t suggest doing something like that.  It’s just a tad dangerous.

So, if you have nothing else to do today, head towards the nearest rainbow—or any beauty of nature, for that matter—and enjoy it every chance you get.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  There is no pot of gold at the end.  Don’t think I didn’t check.

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Two Games In One

4 Jul

Sports Bar

Today was a beautifully sunny day and the weather was perfection.  So I decided to go out gallivanting to watch a game or two and have myself a nice lunch late this morning.

Low and behold, I found the perfect spot at this sports bar right directly at the bar itself (rather than a table)—front and center of two televisions just for me.  A soccer game on one and a little bit of a Wimbledon tennis match on the other.

Could life get any better for me at this moment other than having the food I ordered in front of my face?  Ahhh, the loveliness of life.

So, if you have nothing else to do today, I’d highly suggest you take some time out for yourself to get out of the house on a glorious day and enjoy watching a sport or two or three all at once with a few tellies surrounding you—and your own personal bartender to top it off.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  Nothing like having a nice and somewhat quiet bar practically sans people all to yourself while you enjoy a few matches and food.

 

Emerald Kale Salad

3 Jul

Kale Salad

Emerald Kale Salad with roasted peanut vinaigrette dressing.

What a lovely presentation Houston’s did of a kale salad.  I noticed something on the menu I had never seen before—and, of course, I had to try it.

A girlfriend and I decided to split this salad—she wasn’t very hungry and I wasn’t sure how well I’d like it since I’d never had it before.  I should have known anything that comes from Houston’s is delicious.  This was some nice lovely light eating while out catching up on some girl time.

So, if you have nothing else to do today, doll up a beautiful kale salad to look like a mini mountain then munch away on the crunchy goodness of it.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  Who knew kale could be so tasty good once you fancy it up a bit?

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Game Day Spirit

30 Jun

Me

Top & Jeans—Victoria’s Secret
Belt—Express

I’m such a fanatic when it comes to the World Cup.  Here I was on my way to meet a friend at a sports bar to watch the USA play Portugal.

Though the color red is missing from this ensemble, I thought it was pretty fitting with the white and navy blue stripes for what I grabbed from my closet in such a hurry.  Had I not been so excited to leave, I probably would have worn a red belt rather than the gold one.  A pop of red could have made the difference.

So, if you have nothing else to do today, mix your team’s colors into your attire before heading out for a fun time.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  It’s always better to calm down and give yourself time to fancy yourself up and think through your options so you’re not left regretting that one tiny accessory that could have made all the difference.

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A World Cup Watch Party

29 Jun

Bread Pudding

Bread Pudding topped with caramel sauce; served with vanilla ice cream.

Another World Cup gathering and, naturally, I couldn’t resist having some good food.  I started with a chicken quesadilla which was crunchy amazing.  I just love a crispy tortilla.  Then I had to move on to dessert—bread pudding.

This bread pudding was so huge in comparison to the bread pudding I normally get from my hometown diner.  It was wonderfully delicious and helped with my nerves while watching a close game.

So, if you have nothing else to do today, enjoy a good game with good food along with other rambunctious people.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  Loads of good food can always help when your nerves are shot.

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Fashion USA Style

28 Jun

Street Style - Men

 JEFF
Recreational Therapist
(At a sports bar)

While out enjoying the World Cup games, there was no mistaking who this guy was cheering on.  I’m going to say the clothing speaks for itself.

So, if you have nothing else to do today, take a risk and wrap your country all around you from head to toe while out watching the games—or just because that’s how you want to dress every day.  Should be fun times for you.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  Your team can always feel the love when you show your support whether near or far.

The World Cup Excitement!

27 Jun

I just love, love, love when the World Cup rolls around every four years!  I actually wish we could enjoy it every year—I mean, four years is a long time to wait for the World Cup to roll around each time.  Geez!

But when it does—I’m all over it!  There’s so much excitement and adrenaline going all around.  I love it!  And to think it goes on for an entire month!  I turn into a crazy person hooping and hollering all over the place jumping up and down—some of you would never claim me as your own.

These are times you have to plan your days off work so you can watch the games “live”—because, God forbid, you hear about what happened before you’ve had a chance to watch the game you taped before you get home.  That’s the worst part, trying to avoid the media and people around you talking about it when you haven’t even seen it yet!  So to avoid that problem—it’s much better to watch the games “live”—and it’s more fun that way anyway.

I always hope the USA and England are two of the top 32 countries that make it to the World Cup to begin with—and, if so, I’ll start by following them.  If and when the teams I follow drop off, I’ll start “picking” other teams to follow that I’d like to see win.

Sometimes it’s hard choosing because though I like to see the top playing “well-known” teams win, I also sometimes root for the underdog because those teams hardly ever win anything and aren’t as “popular.”  I start feeling bad for them sometimes.  It’d be amazing to see a small, lesser-known country beat a popular top-playing country that always seems to win.  But I’m always USA and England first and foremost.

So far, I’ve been going to local sports bars to watch the games so I can enjoy some fabulous eating as well.  As you can see, there was no shortage of food around me—and you know how I love being surrounded by food!

I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.  It was a vision of loveliness.

So, if you have nothing else to do today, pick a team you’d like to see win and follow them throughout the World Cup.  If they drop off the map, pick your next favorite team and follow them.  Keep doing this till the very end.  You may be overly surprised by how much you actually enjoy the World Cup even if you’ve never been a big fan.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  When you act like a crazy person over the games, your friends, family, and co-workers may not claim you as their own—especially if they don’t “get” what all the fuss is about.  But WHO CARES?!!  You’re enjoying life, BABY!

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