Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! Stay safe and have fun. :)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Apple & Pear Crostadas

I've been a busy bee over here, trying to get both my semi-grownup life and my Halloween costume together.  And I've been recruited to be Ryan's official makeup artist tomorrow night.  He's going to be some kind of Satanic demon-priest?  And he wants his look to be perfect.  This guy is putting on the pressure, let me tell ya!

I digress.  Needless to say, between the makeup and the aforementioned roommate situation, I've been a little stressed out.  Which means I've gone into blog-reading overload.  Some people, when stressed, drink. Or cry.  Or clean.  I read blogs.  In fact, on Tuesday I didn't even get out of bed until it was time for my night class.  But before I was forced to put on pants get it together, I was pulled in by that homemaking maven, Martha Stewart.  This woman ALWAYS gets me in trouble.

I was browsing her Thanksgiving recipes (I refuse to think about Christmas yet), and found a recipe for an Apple and Cheddar Crostada.  So, I got to baking and let me tell you, these things are perfection.

Please, try not to drool on your keyboard.  Wanna know how to make this puppy?  Of course you do!  It's so easy even I didn't screw it up!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Unexcused Absence

Sorry for the lack of posts, friends.  I've been doing my usual 7-day work week, which leaves so much spare time for blogging.

Ryan and I were house hunting all weekend, so hopefully in the next couple weeks we'll have a place to move into!

I also might sue my roommate.  Doesn't that sound like fun!? 

It actually doesn't sound fun at all, it just sounds like a bunch of extra stress, money, and drama.  But hey, that's the real world, right?

I'll be back soon. In the meantime, I added my bedroom to my Home Tour page.  I want to try and get all the rooms in my apartment photographed and put up there, so I'll have a reference to things I want to do/change in the new place.

Hope everyone's weekends were great!  Please tell me you did something more exciting than house hunting and retaining a lawyer.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Yesterday at Target I was wandering about aimlessly, as I am wont to do on an afternoon when I'm trying to waste some time before work, and the idea of patterned tights popped into my head.

So I found myself wandering awkwardly amongst the old lady bras and little kid shoes and finally found myself in the tights aisle.  Not much appealed to me, and then, all of a sudden, something fuschia and zig-zaggy and wonderful just jumped into my hand unbidden.  Missoni for Target tights.

I guess I had a small moment of insanity, leftover from the Missoni Madness that happened all across the country a couple weeks ago, because when I saw I was holding the last pair, I decided I had to have them. I could always return them if I didn't like them, right?  Well, I got home, pulled those bad boys up, and fell in love!  

I haven't worn tights in over fifteen years, but as I kid I had all kinds of tights.  I guess these just bring back happy memories.  Then I realized, how the hell am I gonna outfit these?  I have a HUGE donk, aren't these going to look dumb?  Ryan's going to hate them.  I need to color coordinate.

Then I hopped on Pinterest and found a new obsession: shorts with tights!  And now, for image overload:

I think the key here is keeping the shorts a little longer and loose, as opposed to Daisy Dukes.  And let's face it, no one looks good in hot pants anyway.  

I'm super excited to try out a couple outfits, although I'm sure Ryan is going to make all kinds of fun of me.  But whateva.

So, what are your thoughts?  Am I the only one itching to release my inner six-year-old and jump on the tights bandwagon?

Friday, October 14, 2011

Restoration Hardware Hack: Framed Sheet Music

About a month ago, the Restoration Hardware Source Book arrived in my mailbox and I've been trying not to drool all over buy everything in it.  Because I'm moving in a couple months, I've been avoiding buying anything decor-related for my apartment; but when I saw this picture I realized it would be a pretty easy DIY.

A gallery wall of framed sheet music?  Lovely!  Paying $199 a pop over at RH?  I don't think so.  Being a musician, I have TONS of old sheet music laying around so lucky me.  If you're not musically-inclined, there are a ton of websites out there where you can download free sheet music, so no worries. :)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Tipping: It's Not a City in China

Before I start this post I know that some asshole is going to post an anonymous comment talking about how whiny I'm being.  And to that, I say: shut up and go somewhere else.

A Little Background:

Now, on with the show.  If you don't already know, I'm a server/bartender at a fairly upscale restaurant in my area.  I've been there for almost four years and, for the most part, I love my job.  I grew up with a single mom who was a bartender for years, and I remember seeing how difficult it was for her to support us, and now I'm finding myself in her shoes.  (Seriously, when was the last time you had to make the choice between buying groceries and paying rent?  If you've ever been there, you know how terrible that feels.)

Seriously, I didn't buy groceries for six months one time.  I lived off of leftovers from my mom's house and free meals my friend in the kitchen provided because he felt bad for me.  Oh, and peanut butter sandwiches.

August - October are notoriously slow in the restaurant industry.  My manager gives us the same spiel every year- "Save your money, turn as many tables as you can, etc."  I get it.  I have a daily budget.  I'm not an idiot.

But when I work five days a week and consistently make 10% tips, avoiding homelessness gets pretty difficult.

I'm Good at This:

Now, let me just say that I am awesome at what I do.  I'm one of four certified trainers for my job.  That means that every server we hire is trained by me.  It took me three years to work up to a bartender's position, because we only promote from within.  In my manager's words the bartenders "are the cream of the crop."  I've been employee of the month.  I'm good with people.  I'm NOT one of those jerk waitresses who doesn't give a damn about you.

I understand that your tips pay my bills.  More importantly, I generally like you (unless you're rude).  I honest-to-God want you to have a good time while I'm waiting on you.

Cutting Corners the Wrong Way:

But these last couple months I've noticed a really disturbing trend: people are still coming out to eat, still spending the same amount on their bill, and are tipping less.  Um.... what?  If you can't afford to tip, you can't afford to go out to eat!

Salary?  What's a Salary?

In case you didn't know, I DO NOT make minimum wage.  In fact, I make $2.13 an hour.  Yes, you read that right.  Two freaking bucks an hour.  AND I tip out 3% of my total sales to the bartenders/bussers/hostesses.  AND I pay taxes on those sales.

So when you come out to eat and have a $75 check, don't leave me $5!  How is anyone supposed to live off of $5?  Where I used to average $500/week, I'm now averaging less than $250.  That's over a fifty percent pay cut.  Imagine your life if your salary were cut in half, without notice.

Wednesdays are one of the busiest days of the week in my restaurant.  With my sales, I should have made around $100- $120 last night.  I made $39.  Last Sunday,  I made $18.  Eighteen.  Dollars.  I sat in my car and cried when I got off work.  

I don't know how many times in the last four years I've gotten the "Thank you so much for your service!  You were wonderful!,"  followed by a tip like the one below.  Hint: A verbal compliment (or what we in the biz like to call a "verbal tip"), while very much appreciated, DOES NOT pay my bills.

Not my finger.
This is just unacceptable.  Trust me, if I could find a full-time day job, I would.  But I'm putting myself through college, with classes during the day, so I can't.  I have rent.  I have bills.  I have a grownup life I'm trying to live and pay for. 

The "Standard":

I'm sure at some point you've heard that the tipping standard is 15 - 20%.  What exactly does that mean?  That means that 15 - 20% of the total bill is what you should leave as a tip.  Now let's get real: 20% is actually the standard these days.  Living is expensive.  I give great service, and I'm disappointed when I get a tip that's less than 20%.

I Suck at Math!  Help!:

Now, the easy way to figure out 20%: Take your total.  For an example we'll use the one from the picture above - $89.00. 

Now move the decimal to the left by one place.  That gives you $8.90; that's 10%.  

Now multiply that by two.  That gives you $17.80. 

Now go out there and start leaving 20%.  And for the love of God, if you get terrible service, TALK TO A MANAGER about it!  I've left two bad tips in my entire life, and trust me, they were warranted.  However, the problem was brought up to a manager beforehand.

If you've stuck through the rant this far, thanks.  Sometimes you need to get something off your chest before you're forced to start pouring bleach into people's sweet teas.  Totally kidding.  I don't poison people because that's illegal. 

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I'm Torn

Ryan and I are looking at moving in together after the new year.  Let's not even talk about how scared I am to take such a big step.

I'm SO sick of looking at Craigslist and realty websites.  I've been stalking streets with Google Maps, trying to discern if the neighborhood is "sketchy," and whether or not the house in question has a fenced back yard.

Of course, not being the most practical of people, I'm already dreaming of how I'm going to decorate our new place.  Let's keep in mind that Ryan is way more opinionated about decor than any sane man has a right to be.

So, here's my dilemma: Do I go colorful or neutral?  Because I am drawn to both!  I know, I know, keep big things like furniture neutral and then you can change it up with accessories, but who really has an extra closet for things like throw pillow covers?  Also, Ryan is drawn to what he dubs modern, while I like a mix of old and new.  So, some inspiration photos from both sides of the color argument.


Kristen F. Davis Designs

Danielle Oakey Interiors


Haute Indoor Couture

For the Love of a House

There's so much to love about all of these rooms!  I'm instantly drawn to bold colors and pattern, but neutral rooms are the ones I find myself thinking about again and again.  I also have a mild obsession for anything old.  The more falling-apart, the better.  I also have a dog who makes keeping anything clean impossible.

Help!  Where do I begin!?

Monday, October 10, 2011

You Know What I'd Like?

A day off.  I've been at el restauaranto five days a week, while teaching and going to class on my two nights off.  I've also been teaching during the day.

Um... can a girl get a day off ova hea!?

I'll see you lovers tomorrow.
With pictures.

I promise!

Friday, October 7, 2011


The lovely and talented Kim over at Third Floor Design Studio is hosting a giveaway from the Shabby Apple.

Now hop on over and try to win you some free shiz!