New Restaurant Alert: Umami Nashville

One of the great things about living in a residential/commercial style apartment building is you have restaurants literally a few feet away. Ever since Umami opened a few months ago I’ve been wanting to give them a try and this past weekend I was finally able to give them a try.

Umami describes itself as  Asian fusion. The menu has an assortment of different styles of Asian food ranging from Korean tacos, to Ramen and sushi. There were lots of things on the menu I definetly wanted to try. However, being that I am on a low carb diet majority of the menu was not an option for me.

I ended up ordering the galbi which is Korean barbecue for those of you unfamiliar with it. Typically the dish comes with rice but I was able to make a special request and sub it for steamed vegetables. Which was a huge win in my book. Steamed vegetables wasn’t an available side item on their menu. Everything was super yummy! The galbi had a good smokey flavor to it and the veggies were delicious too.

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If you’re ever in Nashville I would highly recommend giving Umami a try.

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New Restaurant Alert: Liberty Kitchen and Oyster Bar

liberty kitchen and oyster bar

While in Houston for the Thanksgiving holiday I decided to get started on my 30 before 30 list. Being stuck in landlocked Nashville anything closely resembling fresh seafood was screaming my name. For a while now I’ve been wanting to try Liberty Kitchen and now was the perfect excuse.

The restaurant has 2 main locations and a few smaller spinoff locations. We opted for the one in the Heights. The restaurant in quaint but far from claustrophobic. We were sat in booth on the back wall tastefully decorated with pictures of Houston streets. I ordered a glass of Reisling and perused the menu.

The were quite a few fresh fish options and plus you standard burger and sandwich choices. Plus a whole section dedicated to Mac and Cheese. The menu also had a number of salads and soups including a gumbo.

Being that I was on “vacation” I decided to fully indulge in all the carby options they had to offer. Mainly, that mac and cheese was screaming my name! I mean who doesn’t love mac and cheese. Also the gumbo sounded so good I wanted to try that as well. And boy was I right.

I ordered the cup as a starter. Not only did it have a yummy rich dark roux it also had crab, shrimp, sausage, okra and a fried oyster. Yes, a fried oyster! While I tend to be a traditionalist I was definitely here for the fried oyster.

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Keeping with the fried oyster trend I decided to order the seafood mac and cheese as my entree. It had lots of ooey gooey cheese, shell pasta, shrimp, greens onions and topped with… you guessed it fried oysters.  It was simply heavenly.

seafood mac and cheese liberty kitchen

If you’re ever in Houston I would highly recommend Liberty Kitchen. It was totally worth the calories and a great start to my 30 new restaurants check list!

Are there any restaurants in the Nashville or Houston area I should try? Let me know in the comments.

30 Before 30

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As I previously mentioned my 29th birthday is less than a month away. That means the big 30 is quickly approaching. I feel like I haven’t experienced half of the exciting this most do before they turn 30. Things like traveling and taking big risk. So while I’m still a tad bit young 🙂 I decided to embark on a bucket list challenge. I’ve picked 30 things I would like to do before my 30th birthday.

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Do you have a short term bucket list? If so what’s on yours? Let me know in the comments!

Becoming The Person I Want To Be

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As my 29th birthday is approaching my brain and emotions have been all over the place. The excitement and fear for the big 3.0 are starting to creep in. Soon I will no longer be in my 20s. I can no longer blame mistakes on my age. As some would say, “I’m good and grown” now.  But as I approach this next decade of life I can’t help but think about the person I want to be. The person I have always dreamed of being.

I want to healthy and happy.

I want to live life free of limits

I want to travel and go on great adventures

I want to explore my creativity

I want to be more forgiving

I want to love myself and others

I want to be the best me I can be

No Sir… I Will Not Send You A Picture

 

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When I created my online dating profile I spent a lot of time curating the best photos of myself. I made sure I had some that showed my smile and dimples. Another with me out with friends to prove I had a life. And most importantly I made sure to include a full body picture. Yet somehow all my work was in vain. Every time I begin a conversation with a potential suitor I get asked to send them pictures. No sir… I will not send you a picture. Did you not see the photos on my profile?

Between my profile and Facebook I already have enough pictures floating around the inter-webs. These photos have each been filtered and gone through the full approval process. You do know if I was to send you one I’m just going to send you copies of those photos? Unless, you want the crazy bedhead Snapchats I send to my friends or the photos I take of my eyeliner because I forgot my compact at home, you’ve already seen the best that I got.

The real question is why do guys constantly ask for extra photos?  Look, I get the whole “guys are visual beings” thing, but I have 6 photos on my profile…isn’t that enough. If you want to make sure I’m not catfishing you, lets Skype. Some of us aren’t narcissistic enough to have hundred of selfies in the vault just waiting to be sent to random Joe Blow. And if you’re not worried about being catfished then exactly what kind of photos are you looking for?

Now I’m hip enough to know that what a lot of guys really want is some half naked photo. But they never just say it. Look boys I would much rather you be honest about what it is that you want. The sooner you let me know you’re a perv the sooner I can lose your number. Sorry for wanting to have a conversation before sending some stranger pictures of my lady bits. Actually, it wouldn’t even matter if I knew you for 10+ years I’m not sending you that type of photo. What if I become famous one day  ;-).

On a serious note, this is a PSA to all guys out there. Don’t ask girls for photos! Most of us don’t want to send them. If you need some visual stimulation here is a million dollar suggestion……….

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ASK US OUT!

2015 Dating Recap

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This year I tried online dating again… to say it was successful would be a lie. I prefer to say it was interesting. Me, my roommate, and some friends decided to give a number of sites a try. This time I stayed far away Tinder and opted for a few other paid and non paid alternatives. There I met a few “gentlemen”. Let’s go over a few shall we:

Guy 1

Starting off with guy 1 or as I like to call him Tavern Guy. He reached out to me because I said on my profile I worked in digital marketing. I was so excited because this was the first guy who actually bothered to even read my profile. That was until his questioning felt more like he was interviewing me for a job rather than a potential mate. And you know what he did offer me a freelance job which I respectfully declined. Leave it to me to find anything but a date on a dating site. A couple weeks went by then he messaged me again. I was thinking geez this guy most have never heard of putting up a job posting, classified ad, or hell look on LinkedIn. However, this time our conversation leaning a little more on the romantic side. Given our previous conversation I must admit I was a bit jaded, but he could form a proper sentence, didn’t use words like “dat” or “sup”, and he didn’t ask me if I wanted to see “IT”, so we were on a good track. Anyway, during our conversation he kept going on and on about how he was so spontaneous. Anyone who knows me knows I’m a planner. I love itineraries! Originally I didn’t think much about his spontaneity until he showed up at the bar I was at with my roommate Victoria. You’re probably thinking awww that’s so sweet… Yeah no it really wasn’t. Me being a dummy, I didn’t think much about him asking me which bar so I told him Tavern downtown. That was until literally two mins later he walked in slightly sweaty and a little out of breath. I didn’t even have to try to act awkward it was already an awkward situation. Did I mention he left his car running outside while his friend a rapping teddy bear sat in the passenger seat?  Yeah, let’s just move on.

Guy 2 aka Marriott Man

Now guy 2 just seemed too good to be true. He was handsome, tall, really in shape and had a MBA from Stanford. Sad to say I was suspicious but I played along for awhile. He seemed nice and was just moving into town for work. Because the high dollar condo he was going to be living in wasn’t ready his company had him living at the Marriott, hence the nickname. After a few days of talking he invited me for drinks at the restaurant in the hotel. While hesitant I decided to go because this was the first guy to ask me out vs just creepily showing up. However, seconds before I left my house he called and said he got hung up at work. Being that he supposedly he was the VP of Accounting for his company I thought was maybe he was telling the truth. Anyway, we tried to reschedule a few times but he seemed to only want to meet at the hotel. That’s when I really got suspicious and figured I was being catfished. So I channeled my inner Nev and Max and started doing some research. With a quick Spokeo search of his number and a Google Image search I found what I was looking for. So as far as I know he did use actual pictures of himself but lied about pretty much everything else like his name, job, school, and where he was from. The crazy part is the guy who’s LinkedIn profile I found using the name from Spokeo and his picture was actually very accomplished. While his MBA wasn’t from Stanford he still had one. He may not have been a VP in accounting but was still a high level executive. Oh well once I figured out he was a liar I just left him alone

Now for the others:

Guy 3 aka Girly Voice:

He was a truck driver but sounded 12 year old girl I just couldn’t do it.

Guy 4 aka Thirsty Turtle:

He looked a little scary so we were supposed to meet at a bar called the Thirsty Turtle with my friends in tow. Instead, he wanted to meet at night at the lake… No sir! My face will not end up of the side of a milk carton.

Guy 5:

No nick name for him. There’s really not much to say except for he was super immature.

Remind me to give up dating in 2016.

My Psychic Told Me I Should Get Back To Blogging

 

 

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For my birthday I wanted to try something new and different so I chose to get my palm read. My expectations were extremely low. I was expecting to hear her say that I would get a promotion tomorrow, marry a millionaire and a bunch of other crazy tales, instead my psychic told me I should get back to blogging.

It took me completely by surprise when she told me that I need to get back to writing. I was kind of shocked that she would know that I write. It’s not often that I consider myself a writer in the first place. In my mind true writers have so much to say and don’t deal with the extreme block that I face. I admit I had great expectations for this blog I have so much I want to share but honestly I’m scared. I’ve never been a very open person and I’m not sure what people would be interested in reading. Recently, I thought about shutting the site down but now I’m thinking maybe I should give it another try.

So that brings me to my next question what do you all want to read about? I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts!

Good For Them! (I Don’t Care…)

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(Conversations with my mother)

Mom: Hi! Did you hear (random kid I went to school with) got a job at (random awesome place with high paying salary)?
Me: Really? That’s great.
Mom: Yeah! Did you see on Facebook that (random cousin I don’t talk to who recently got divorced) is engaged?
Me: Oh really.
Mom: Also (random girl who goes to her church that knows the third cousin of someone I know) just had a baby. She’s so cute!
Me: Good for them! (I dont care..)

 

Maybe it comes with age. Maybe I missed the memo and this is the type of conversation every twenty-something around the world is having with their parents.  Call me selfish, but I have my own life to worry about.The last thing I want to hear about is how Suzy Q is on husband number 2 and I can’t even get a 2nd date. Or how the grade school overachiever is on their way to financial success and I’m just setting up my first savings account. Why do parents think we want to hear about the lives of every Joe Schmo?

Perhaps this is their way of dropping subtle hints. I know my parents mean well and their intentions aren’t to add any additional pressure. However, when it’s just me on the other end of the conversation my brain’s first reaction is to compare myself to that person. If there’s one thing I hate most in life, it’s comparing myself to others, but Its something I find myself doing often. I start thinking, well why is that not happening to me. Am I not working hard enough? What do I need to change? Honestly, the whole self analysis thing is draining. It takes up so much of my energy I really don’t have any left to actually give a care about someone else’s life.

So from on I really need my conversations with my parents to go a little something like this:

Mom: Hi! How are you doing?
Me: Fine… (Long rant about MY life)
Mom: Everything will be OK!

The End.

Am I the only one with this problem? Are your parents constantly telling you about the events in other people’s lives that you could care less about?

 

 

Post Grad Activities

Like a good college alumnae I went to homecoming this year. In true late bloomer fashion and not-so surprisingly, this was my first time showing my face at a post graduate activity. Being away from Nashville for the last 4 1/2 years, I was just never dedicated enough or had enough money to travel for these types of events. But this year I put on red and blue grabbed my foam paw and went to homecoming to cheer on my alma mater’s basketball team!

 

I have to say being back on campus was a strange experience. So many things have changed yet some things were eerily exactly the same. This time instead of sitting in the student section I found myself on the opposite side of the arena. Instead standing the whole game behind Fratty McFratster, I was sitting behind my first year seminar teacher. The difference between the two sides of the arena couldn’t be on further ends of the spectrum. The student side is loud, feisty, and crowded. The other side of the arena was calm and had a refined sense of excitement. Not to mention comfortable. We weren’t packed in like sardines. To be honest, I think I kind of liked this side better. I could sit down and enjoy the game. Plus I didn’t leave hoarse with achy feet and back. Heck, I’m old now, I can’t hang like I used too 😉 !

While this atmosphere of homecoming was different some things were perfectly similar. One might call it traditional. It just a nostalgic feeling that brings joyful memories of being happy together! Only the cool schools stop in the middle of the game and start singing the Turtles.

 

Overall, i must say I had an enjoyable experience at my first event as a post grad. Have any of you gone back to participate in any events at your alma mater? What are some of your favorites?

Where I Am vs Where I Thought I Would Be

As a kid reaching age 27 seemed like light-years away. I had all these ideas on what being 27 would be like. I can remember playing with my imaginary friends (#onlychildproblems) pretending to be a grown up who was slowing approaching 30. At the time, I thought this age would be magical. And honestly I must say its really not THAT bad, but its far from what I imagined.

You see 10 year old me thought:

I’d be a famous singer
Reality: I work for an insurance company
 
I’d be married
Reality: Not even close
 
I’d have 2 kids
Reality: (see above)
 
I’d own a 2 story home
Reality: I live in a house (Does that count?)
 
I’d live in Florida (Don’t judge me, I wanted to live close to the Backstreet Boys and Disney World)
Reality: I live in Tennessee (PS You couldn’t pay me to live Florida.. no offense Floridians)
 
I’d drive a Camaro
Reality: I drive a Kia
 
I’d have great friends
Reality: Well I guess some things do come true!
 
As a kid, where did you think you’d be at your current age?