Thursday, February 26, 2009

Supermarket Sweep

This post is dedicated to Gray and any other blog-stalking mothers out there . . .

Is there anything scarier than walking into Publix and seeing a life-size Cut-out of Michael Chiarello staring you down and ready to attack???

That is what the LOML and I ran into last Sunday while making our weekly trip to the grocery store. But this wasn’t any normal trip mind you . . . this was our first trip since my wife began THE GROCERY GAME!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

If you aren’t familiar with the Grocery Game (I was not, until this past week, and I’m trusting none of the dudes in the audience are either), it’s basically a HUGE DATABASE you (pay to) join and it lists what grocery deals are going on that week and whether or not you should take advantage!!

Well, gee-wilickers TMF’H, why don’t you just look in the Sunday paper and see what’s on Sale yourself???

My thoughts exactly, except when you put in your Zip Code, it has catalogued every Coupon/Sale from the last 6 weeks or so and compares it to the Regular Price, the current Sale price, and any available coupon price to get YOU the best deal possible. So if there was a coupon in January’s paper for X product, and this week, that product is Buy One Get One Free at Publix, the GG will list it out, and advise you whether or not you should stock up.

For instance, the GG told us we could find a $5 off coupon inside Publix, that we would NEVER have seen if we didn’t know where to look (ironically, Michael Chiarello was holding it). And since the coupon was only good for certain items that were already on sale that week, the GG said we should stock up (Cans of Black Beans, Green Beans and Corn ended up costing $.42 and I think they usually retail for around a buck).

The one downside (if you ask the accountant) is you should probably start saving all your coupons for 4-6 weeks before actually joining (if you really want to get the most out of your membership). Other than that, I think the membership fee will basically pay for itself!

In addition to the Grocery Game at Publix, we also started with the CVS ECBs or the “Buy a Bunch of Stuff you Wouldn’t Normally Buy to Get Credit for your Next Purchase” game. I think this is pretty popular with the Mommy Blogging set and this past week we bought $20 worth of stuff we normally wouldn’t buy, like EXTREME 6 HOUR ENERGY SHOT!!!

BUT we also got about $20 back in ECBs which we can use to buy more stuff next time. I think the key is to always find items that get you the same amount (or more) of ECBs and then you never really have to spend any more money after the initial purchase. The ECBs do expire, so we’ll see how well we keep up with everything . . .

Wow, I need to take a couple shots of Jim Beam after typing up that femi-post! Where’s my copy of Vulgar Display of Power when I need it??

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

International House of Blog

Ok, I have to brag on my wife for a minute. Last night I came home from another exciting 12 hour day at the office and this is what the LOML had waiting for me!!

She was pretty proud of herself and even took pictures to document her tasty meal! (I’m usually the one geeking out over what we cook and want to post the photos on-line for the ones of individuals reading this blog)

The Potato/Carrot Pancakes are from this month’s issue of Real Simple (her subscription, not mine). I spent a couple minutes looking for the recipe on-line but couldn’t find it anywhere? I think you basically shred some carrots and potatoes, mix em up, and fry them in the skillet. They were really good!

PS - Did you know today (2/24/09) is National Pancake Day?? From 7 am to 10 pm you can get a free stack of pancakes at your local IHOP.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Nights Like These

Can you believe Lucero was in town Friday night and I didn’t even tell y’all about it?????
Head over to BHAM.FM for some post-show thoughts and a few photos . . .

PS –If you were wondering who was going to announce they’re coming to Birmingham next, it’s MASTODON

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Birmingham Rock City (remix)

Ok, so remember when I said yesterday Birmingham had completely lost its mind with all the concert announcements this week??? And remember how last week I was talking about the Thermals and how sweet they were?? And then I kinda referenced the two together??

Yeah . . . today the Thermals announced they’re coming back to Birmingham!!!

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!! Who will we find out is coming to Birmingham tomorrow???????

PS – the Hood Internet also dropped a Thermals/Katy Perry mash-up this week. K.P. sounds like a less man-ish Pink to me. I may or may not have listened to this song on repeat today . . .

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Birmingham Rock City

Man, has this been one SWEET week in Live Music News!!! First, I guess I should clarify my post from last week.

I like Music Blogs. I like reading original thought/content and hearing about new music that's coming out. I don't like reading "breaking news" about Mandy Moore and Ryan Adams getting engaged over . . . and over . . . and over . . . There's nothing fresh or insightful . . . and it will get picked up by
FoxNews or CNN a few hours later anyway.

But yeah, this has been an exciting week for Music Lovers here in Birmingham. In only the first three days of this week,
WILCO, TV ON THE RADIO, and the AVETT BROTHERS have all announced dates in BIRMINGHAM!!! Hellz yeah!!!!

Please tell me tomorrow T-Pain (with
Lonely Island??) is coming back to Workplay!!! (fingers crossed)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

(Bronson) Arborio Rice

I mentioned last month that I received a gift subscription to Gourmet magazine for my birthday. It's a pretty sweet magazine and this past Sunday, the LOML and I tried out another recipe from the January issue, Pea & Bacon Risotto.

I thought I'd class up this recipe by substituting Pancetta for the Bacon. Doesn't saying "Pancetta" just make you feel classier?

"Ohhhhhh, I had Pancetta-wrapped ____ at the Country Club. It was so luxurious and foodie-riffic. Much healthier than the Bacon Explosion."

Sunday was my first time to cook Risotto and I was impressed with the results (although you literally have to baby sit the rice for 20-25 minutes, adding a little more liquid every couple of minute, stirring, repeat). The finished product was a rich, semi-quick meal, and one we'll definitely try again.

Here's a list of the Top 10 Risotto Recipes from Wikipedia's entry on the subject (although this list seems a bit arbitrary to me)

I think we'll try Butternut Squash in our next Risotto, or maybe I'll try and replicate the Seafood Risotto served at GianMarco's?? Mmmmmm, GianMarco's . . .

Monday, February 16, 2009


Guess who's back in ELBA, AL and REALLY EXCITED!!!!!

Now, I'm sure you're thinking to yourself, WOW, there is probably A LOT going on in Elba!!! The options for Dining Out and Nightlife must be endless, right???


The first thing we did last week, was create a Meal Grid. That's right, when 3 or more accountants gather together, there Excel will be also. We finalized Week 2 of the grid this morning, so if you want to follow along with us this week, refer to the grid below:

Excel: Making Life more Efficient since 1985

Remind me to tell you about our experience at Rawl's last week. I'm pretty sure, its the only time I've ever been served Tiramisu warm (freshly thawed out the microwave, per our waitress) . . .

And there you have it folks, Reason # 404 why it's good to be a CPA!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day, Dear!!

Well, the beard and I had a good run:

But I thought it was time for a change. In keeping with the traditions of every guy who has ever grown a beard, I took a few pictures in various stages of clean shaved-ness.* I don’t think girls will ever understand why guys have to do this; it’s just something coded in our DNA:

The Lemmy!!!! Ace of Spades!!!!!

The CPA (pocket protector not included)

Happy Valentine’s Day, my love!!!

* There may be a youtube video somewhere, if you know where to look . . .

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Deep Thoughts

I realized something last week . . . a lot of music blogs (p4k, stereogum, etc.) pretty much all break the same "breaking news" . . .

For instance, today in Google Reader, I read three (I guess this makes four) different articles about the Thermals new single "Now We Can See" (last week it was Eddie Vedder singing U2 at an Arizona Best Western). Does anyone else think that's annoying?

And I really like the Thermals (well, I like their catchy melodies, not so much their post-apocalyptic lyrics)

But thats why I like Food and Photography blogs better . . . you may have similar topics (ingredients, subject matter, lighting tips), but you're not going to read the same thing twice . . .

Back in Elba

Well, I'm back in Elba, AL for the week and enjoying all the familiar sites and sounds of this booming, southern metropolis (we just got back from the Creekside Grille aka Ronnie Gilley's restaurant) . . .

BUT, you know what has made the trip totally worth it . . . Sikes & Kohn's February Sale (an EXTRA 20% off their already low prices!!)

I got some Cole Haans that ended up being 56% less than the MSRP:

AND, I got me a "western-style" shirt ($13) that I already know will only be approved by the Mrs. for concerts and/or Bachelor Party/Man-weekends . . .

(not appropriate for grown-up Dinner Parties)

Monday, February 9, 2009

Blog Meets Grill

So Friday night we had some folks over to our house for FAJITAS!! I was pretty excited to fire up the grill and wanted to try out my own (errr, Tyler Florence's) marinade (the recipe is from Food 911). I like Tyler Florence, even though he did create a (very forgettable) menu of "signature dishes" just for Applebee's . . .

The star(s) of this marinade are the Chipotles in Adobo, which I had never used until maybe 6 months ago (Isn't Bobby Flay always going on and on about these?). Well, I finally tried them, and they definitely add the Smoky/Spicy kick you've come to love in your Tex-Mex dishes. We ended up tripling the recipe (since it was for about 8 lbs of meat) and used store bought O.J. as opposed to the fresh squeezed.

Mojo Marinade
1 C Orange Juice
1 C Lime Juice (about 6 limes)
1 C Olive Oil
6 Garlic cloves (roughly chopped)
6 Chipolte chiles, in Adobo sauce
Handful of fresh cilantro leaves
3 tsp Cumin
3 tsp Salt
(combine all ingredients in Blender)

The best part about grilling 8 lbs of FAJITA meat??

FAJITA nachos (with the leftovers) the rest of the weekend!!!


and a Sensible Dinner

About a year ago, the LOML and I got on a big Smoothie kick! We've spent many a Saturday morning (and mid-week evening) having these for breakfast and/or dinner. And after making these smoothies at home, it's pretty near impossible to go back to Smoothie King, Planet Smoothie, etc. (theirs are all made with ICE aka FILLER!). You can get a one or two pound bag of frozen strawberries for about $10 at Costco and your smoothies will taste a whole better . . .

After another long night at the office last Thursday (and the wife home sick that day), this is what we had for dinner. I don't really measure everything out since all of these ingredients are tasty and more or less of one doesn't take away from the finished product!

TMFH Smoothie
1/2 C OJ
1/2 C Milk
1/3 C Vanilla Yogurt
1/2 C frozen Strawberries
1/2 C frozen Blueberries
1 Tbs Peanut Butter
1 Tbs Flaxseed Meal

We usually keep a bag of Baby Spinach in our fridge and throw a generous handful in the blender (you can't taste or see it) for the added vitamins, etc. Unfortunately, we didn't have any on hand last week, but don't be scared! It's "deceptively delicious"!!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Red Hot + Blog

So it seems the Music Blog-o-sphere is all a flutter this week (and will continue to flutter the next two weeks) with news and track listings on the upcoming Dark was the Night compilation (no relation to Christian Bale’s bat-crazy rant earlier this week) soon to be released by the Red Hot organization. According to their website, Red Hot Organization (RHO) is an international organization dedicated to fighting AIDS through pop culture.

Does that sound like fun to anyone else??? Can I fight something through pop culture?? What if I throw a Chuck Klosterman book at a client who doesn’t have their information ready for an audit?? Can someone grant me 501(c)3 status for that??

Anyways, I remember RHO from their No Alternative compilation released in 1993 (you recognize this album cover from your BMG Music catalog don’t you??)

I bought it in high school, b/c I liked the hidden Nirvana track (initially coined “Verse Chorus Verse," later dubbed “Sappy”). Ironically, there is a really crappy CCR cover by Uncle Tupelo that I always skip over.

Why am I droning on and on about RHO and Dark was the Night??? Oh yeah . . . because every Indie Superstar you could name is on this Comp!!! Arcade Fire, the Decemberists, Conor Oberst, Yo La Tengo, Feist + Ben Gibbard, My Morning Jacket, blah blah blah (chk chk chk)

Seriously though, if the Mrs. is reading this and wants to know what I want for a (belated) Valentines gift (it drops 2/17/09), surf over to and pre-order this!!

In other Music News, is combining forces with Sam George + to become THE place for local music. “We’re” putting on a show this Saturday night at Speakeasy to celebrate. Bright Henry, The Photonicas and The Dirty Lungs for $5.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


This post reminds me of that blog Gray mentioned a few months back, The Dullest Blog in the World

Just wanted to warn you. Feel free to navigate away. I won’t get my feelings hurt.

So when I started working at (insert name of firm I currently work for) they gave me an Office Plant to welcome me to the fam. Sounds pretty lame, right?? Actually you’d be surprised how much “life” a small plant brings to a painfully fluorescently-lit, four-walled office (that’s right, no cubes here!). I liked my plant and took pride in the fact I had kept it alive the past 17 months . . . until this week :(

You see, usually I could go a week or so without watering it, let it “die,” then water it again and watch it "come back to life.” Not so this time. I think it has gone through shock and not coming back. Are there any botanist blog stalkers out there? Am I considered an awful plant owner or is 17 months a pretty good run for an office plant??

Wow, I just fell asleep typing this. I’m going home . . .