The Bonanza

Being that I’ve taken the last three years off from celebrating much of anything, it.was.on. for my birthday this year. For those of you unaware (I have no fucking idea how you couldn’t if you read this blog very often at all), my day of gracing this planet with my presents presence is exactly three months after Christmas. And frankly, I had so much fun this year, I may just start my birthday countdown December 26. Sorry. Not sorry.

My big time celebrating did start about a week prior to the actual day because my Iowa peeps were in Nashville for their spring break.

Birthday Sandwich.

Sister CBXB, being the foodie that she is, kept saying she was my amuse bouche (which in French literally translates to mouth amuser….It’s OK, I live in the south) to my birthday. Since I frequent more hip chain style casual dining restaurants of the likes of Chili’s, I had to look the term up. Amuse bouche is served at fancy restaurants before any orders are placed to prepare diners of the chef’s style. Next time at Dalts I’m going to ask for an amuse bouche with a side of ranch before my first Skinny Pirate.

The amuse bouche of my birthday!

We went to a fabulous restaurant called Husk, where we were on a three-way (again, fine due to my region of residence) text with my foodie bro-in-law back in Iowa.  He is an expert on ordering, knows what we like to eat, drink and guzzle.

Husk Hooch.

Naturally, when two corn-fed sisters saw cornbread on the menu, it was a must.

We hated it.

Aside from the beyond our wildest dreams cornbread we wanted to stuff into our purses for a snack later, we feasted on fried dilly tomatoes with pimento cheese, chicken, steak and more cocktails, of course. BIL informed us that this was all created under Chef Brock who is on the new season of Chef’s Table on Netflix.

We so fancy.

I carried the fancy on to the Mumford and Sons concert Sister CBXB took me to after supper. I carefully selected my concert t-shirt (a must whenever I see a live show) and then promptly put it on.

Yes. I’m that girl.

My sister put her t-shirt on right away too because siblings stick together. After getting cocktails that cost more than I’m paid per hour, we sat to watch the opening act. As we were chit chatting about how lights and speakers are hung (I used to work in music production) a man in front of us was apparently on a first fucking Match.com date and asked us to be quiet. Then his date piped in and said she, “paid good money for these tickets.”

You can imagine how that went.

Take your shhhh! and shove it up your ass.

Ahmahzing sold out show.

Mumford and Sons not only sold out the Bridgestone Arena, they also broke the record for attendance tipping the people meter at over 19,000.

The following evening, First Mate further assisted me out of my culinary comfort zone and took me to a new Indian restaurant in Nashville called Chaatable. Every time I think of Indian food, I see Ben Stiller sweating (then shitting) his brains out in the movie Along Came Polly.

Beauty and her birthday Beast.

You guys, this restaurant was beyond. I didn’t sweat or shit myself (surprisingly) while dining here. The food was insane good to the point where I wanted to lick my butter chicken bowl clean (I may have).

All. the. yes.

There are 80,000 Indian bracelets used as a central piece of the art in the restaurant. Now I need one of these in the Mini Manse, of course.

Bracelet bonanza.

The eve of my birthday consisted of wine, cats, cuddles and DVR.

Purrrrfection.

On my birthday, I woke up with all four of my pussies in the bed, contemplating having a ‘sick’ day from work since my birthday fell on a Monday. However, that would have been a grave mistake on my part.

Well wishes came in all kinds of styles starting with handmade cards from the twins…

…to insane crazy sweet text messages…

…to appropriate memes sent to me throughout the day.

It looked like Christmas morning at my desk upon my arrival to work. From wine, to pink icing covered donuts, to lunch with coworkers at my fave Dalts to cake in the afternoon, the day did not suck.

Spoiled beyond.

Here I thought it would be a slight bummer having my birthday fall on the first day of the work week but boy, was I mistaken.

After a short work day (I have the best boss), I met First Mate for rosé at 51st Taproom.

Rosé all birthday.

Then it was on to a Mexican fiesta with Mama CBXB and Rasta for more vino, accompanied by some cheese dip and 4,961 chips. And then, my mom’s family famous O’Henry bars for a birthday treat.

Janie’s Junk just for me.

Due to the fact that I had years of celebrating to make up for, I welcomed wishes and reminders all week.

Double DUH.

My TGIF birthday night was another fabulous dining experience for me. Van Waffles took me to the Marsh House at the Thompson Hotel in the Gulch area of Nashville. Another menu for me to text my BIL and sister, who guided me through the ordering process of cocktails, BBQ shrimp (fucking killer) and Mahi.

The Marsh House mania.

The experience was so divine, it was dizzying.

Best photographer ever.

Saturday, Van Waffles spoiled me further by cooking a fabulously kick ass meal at the Mini Manse. I have no idea what all was in it aside from salmon and noodles but it all went into my belly. I also had no idea my kitchen functioned properly for which it was intended (not just extra storage in the oven).

THIS. WAS. MADE. IN. MY. KITCHEN.

Further spoiling came from all over the globe. I woke up on Sunday to this sweet message from my buddy, Stevie, who lives in Australia. We’ve yet to meet in person but it seems like we’ve been friends for years. Because we have been friends on social media. Isn’t that fun?

The awesome didn’t stop, as I made my way to Dalts for a much-needed hair of the dog on my day of rest.

Then capped off by my favorite relaxing ritual.

Birthday bubbles.

All in all, this was one of my best birthdays that I can remember. So much so, that I won’t ever be taking three years off from celebrating again.

Cheers until next year!

Thanks for all of the love. I love you right back.

CBXB

CBXB!

Baby Back Twins

A crazy trifecta.

A trifecta of crazy.

It’s no secret that I am bat shit cray cray over my niece and nephew who reside in Iowa.  While I’m certifiably nuts over the twins, my pussies (especially Ted), the Iowa Hawkeyes and Skinny Pirates, my teeny kinfolk (a snazzy word I’ve picked up since living in the South) are bananas over chips and salsa.

Chips and salsa for everyone!

Chips and salsa for every meal please.

She means fucking business.

Princess B means fucking business.

While any old brand will typically do the trick when they get a hankering, there is one place that ranks highly in the hearts of the twins in regard to salsa.

Twins of a different sort.

Twins of a different sort and their mothership of salsa.

A love for all things about the Chili’s casual dining experience, the twins go banana pants when it comes to the food served.

Cheese

A cheesehead stringing his snack out.

Of course the main dish is typically copious amounts of salsa.

Happy place.

Happy place.

Salsa and cheese. The gifts that keep on giving.

Salsa and cheese.
The gifts that keep on giving.

Just recently, a new adoration was revealed after a family sing-a-long of one of Chili’s most famous commercial jingles. (I mean, what classy family in desperate need of toddler entertainment doesn’t dig advertisement songs out from the past to pass down from generation to generation?)

Not sure what I’m talking about? Well, please tune in to the two virtuoso versions below. Yes, my heart is bursting with pride over the renditions of “Chili’s Baby Back Ribs“.

Allow me to set the twins up.

Ahem….

I want my baby-back-baby-back-baby-back-baby-back.

I want my baby-back-baby-back-baby-back-baby-back.

Naturally, I’m waiting by the phone for the marketing department of Chili’s to call and offer Prince and Princess B contracts (of course I’ll be the auntager, giving Kris Jenner a run for her billions).

BARBECUE SAUCE!

CBXB

CBXB!

 

How to Be a Four Eyed Drunk Girl

One of my many blessings in life is my eyesight from hell.

Without aid from the wonders of optometry, I can’t operate a vehicle, I can’t see the alarm clock from my bed and I can’t find a contact lens when I’m drunk.

Hello Gorgeous

Hello Gorgeous.

Since gracing earth with my presence I’ve worn glasses and adapted to doing all kinds of activities in the lovely plastic specs that took up half of my facial circumference daily.

Dancing in tap class? No problemo.

Tapped my

Four-eyed Ginger Rogers at her finest.

Eating birthday cake in gigantic red goggles? Got it.

Cake

I wish I may, I wish I might have glasses that cure my poor eyesight.

Playing catcher for a girl’s softball team? Easy peasy.

Putting a catcher’s mask over my subtle, cherry red eyewear was about as much fun as you can imagine. Especially when I’d dramatically rip off my  mask (and also accidentally tear my glasses off in the process) in an attempt to catch a foul ball behind home base, which never happened as I couldn’t see shit without those Coke bottle sized lenses in front of my eyes.

Catch this.

I got it! I got it! I got it! Wait, I can’t see it….and now I have dirt in my eyes. Help.

When I was presented with the opportunity to swap my daily face accessory with contact lenses, I jumped at the chance. Surely, by getting contacts I would magically turn into a gorgeous mini version of Cindy Crawford, Heidi Klum or Gisele Bundchen.

The transformation was amazing…

That's it!

From totally geek….

Yeah...didn't make that much difference.

…to totally geek.

But that didn’t thwart my attempts to be a Midwestern model.

Eat your heart out Gisele.

Eat your heart out Gisele.

While forcing plastic lenses (gas permeable, mind you) into my eyes as a kid surprisingly didn’t turn me into a supermodel, they did help the moderate to high astigmatism that plagued my eyeballs.  Having contacts also taught me the importance of routine, as I had to clean the teeny tiny lenses morning and night which years later is as much a part of my daily activities as sipping a Skinny Pirate.

Speaking of routines and alcohol, I never ever go to sleep without taking my hard contacts out. So even when I’ve had five two cocktails too many, my body goes through the motions of removing my seeing aides.

One recent evening after happy hour, I popped my left lens out and instead of having it fall into my palm as usual, it suddenly disappeared.

Into thin air.

Scene of contact crime

Anybody see it?

Thing is, hard contacts are about half the size of your pinky nail. And my contacts are clear.  Upon realizing my mistake, I immediately became a statue, trying to not move a muscle while reaching for my trusty old spectacles.

Then I started to slowly gaze over the mounds of beauty products in an open drawer next to my contact case.

No luck.

Then I lightly combed the vanity with my fingers hoping to recover the hard piece of plastic.

No luck.

Ugh

Yeah, it takes this many pieces to put my puzzle together.

Then with a slight pit in my stomach, I looked toward the floor covered in khaki carpet.

No luck.

Little. Clear. Carpet

Anyone see it?

Slightly drunk, kinda blind and after crawling on my hands and knees for half of the evening, I threw in the towel on trying to locate the little bastard.

Classless and contactless.

Swapping gas perms for goggles.

The next morning, I was getting ready to hop in the shower and went to grab my towel that hangs on the door directly behind the sink where my contact went missing.

Shower time.

A witness to the great contact caper.

And what to my wondering eyes did appear?

Grab'n'go.

My mother fucking contact.

There was a miracle that morning, folks. My thumb slightly brushed up against the piece of modern medicine that makes my eyes happy on the pink terry cloth.

So how did my contact end up on a towel that was behind my head when I popped it out of my eye?  It will forever be a mystery to this slightly drunk and kinda blind gal.

I’m just happy I don’t currently have four eyes.

CBXB

CBXB!

The Fabulousness of White Trash

Sink.

Only chic people bathe in the kitchen sink, ya dig?

Can white trash be fabulously classy?

It’s all in one’s perspective.

I picked up all kinds of trashy tips from my youth – like wrapping a can of pop (soda, Coke, whatever area of the world you live in insert word here) in aluminum foil is a poor gal’s koozie (my mom would do this to chill my beverage for field trips), keeping a wet wash cloth in a plastic baggie is just the same (and much cheaper) than a wet wipe (again, my clever mother), and ketchup between two slices of bread will make you feel like a chef (my genius shining through).

Ketchup sandwich for one, please.

Ketchup sandwich for one, please.

Any of these tips ring a bell to you? If not, you’re a classy person – in my book anyway.

To me, being white trash is knowing better (eating the piece of cheese after removing the moldy corner, blaming the broken basketball hoop on me, your cousin when I saw you break it with my own two eyes, proudly announcing that your entire family’s favorite movie is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, digging the bag of chips out of the garbage because you want to be sure you ate them all or wearing a mini skirt with heels – that are just a tad too high – but doing it anyway), while not giving a rat’s ass what anyone thinks.

A mini minus the heels.

An early mini minus the heels.

I grew up in a rural Iowa town where it was a big deal if Dad decided to get a Casey’s gas station pizza on Friday night, a small hog (yes hog, not dog) house served as my backyard playhouse where mud pies were served abundantly and you were never short a friend or cousin to play alongside and smoke sugared cancer sticks.

Smoking deck for my cousin and me.

Classy candy cigarettes on the smoking deck after a long day of play.

I was also raised in a world where it was perfectly acceptable (in my family, anyway) to come home from the pool for lunch, play a round of baseball with Dad in the yard (not opting for a wardrobe change – sticking with the classy bathing suit), then head back to swim the rest of the day away.

Quick round of batting practice while home from the pool

Quick round of batting practice while home from the pool.

Being in a small town, we made our own fun. If there were no toys around or activities for a kid to do, my parents entertained me with a brown grocery bag, which I obviously enjoyed with enthusiasm.

No toys? No problem. A paper bag will do the trick.

No toys? No problem.

Preschool graduation days were also classily creative due to my mother’s knack of using paper and a plastic bowl in lieu of a real hat.

Graduation day at its finest.

Kiddie College graduation day at its finest.

Thankfully, the tricks of the white trash trade I acquired while growing have remained in perfect tact.

Drunk Girl

Classy drunk girl gracefully aging through life with a red roadie and one shoe.

White trash? Or fabulously trashy?

Fabulous in my book.

CBXB

CBXB!

How to be an Unruly Fan

The most

Did I do that?

When attending a sporting event of any kind, I can’t help but really get into the spirit of the event. This past Saturday, I was gussied up in my finest Hawkeye threads….

All dressed up...

Yep. Ready for the game.

I had a hot date with my college roommie….

Let's do this.

Let’s do this.

We pre-partied with the best of them in parking lot tailgates…

with somewhere to go...

We’re in there somewhere.

We may or may not have contributed to this mess…

Been here, done that.

Been here, done that.

And when we entered Kinnick stadium, we might have thought the crowd was cheering our arrival.

Rush of the roaring crowd...

Rush of the roaring crowd.

Our high was quickly sucked away by the Debbie Downer (and fan of the opposing team) sitting to my left in the straw hat. Yes, the one who was approximately 102 years old.

And then this...

Fun hater to my left.

You see, Whitney Lover and I were simply happy to be together. In our old college stadium. With 70,000 of our closest friends.

And we are not the most soft-spoken ladies. Nor are we the classiest ladies. Nor are we any kind of boring.

So we cheered. We hooped. We hollered. We would have done toe touches if we were still limber enough if there had been enough room.

We were so happy we felt the need to document every other second.

Hi. We're here together and I have 4.2 million photos to prove it.

Hi. We’re here together and I have 4.2 million photos to prove it.

Scoreboard

Have you seen the working scoreboard?

Band time...

Did you know we witnessed the marching band?

While over enjoying the atmosphere,  I overheard the 102 year old tell her hubs that she was “appalled” (yes, she said appalled and yes, I was keeping my hands to myself AND I hadn’t even been using my favorite f word, as the Hawks were winning) by our loud, obnoxious behavior (and most likely the pink streaks in my hair).

So when she squeezed her ears shut as the fans around her cheered for an Iowa touchdown…I may or may not have been inches closer to her ear than necessary.

Inappropriate, loud behavior.

Hearing aid not needed.

And then I scooched a little closer to my new bestie for the second half of the game…

Oops.

Oops.

Just to make her day a little more fun.

And unruly.

CBXB

CBXB!

How to Stretch Out a Party

I’ve never met a day I couldn’t celebrate, especially when it involves my date of birth.

Ole!

Ole!

Remember the fun celebrations of yesteryear, where all the school kids would line up on your special day for a piece of cake and a party favor?

Party!

The beginning of my celebratory spirit. The more, the merrier.

Well now that I’m an adult (I use that term loosely) and most of the folks I know have real grown-up lives (you know, mortgages, spouses, babies, jobs – which I know nothing about except for the work part) it’s harder to get everyone together for one celebration. Which means that I streeeeeetch the occasion out for as long as humanly possible.

On my actual birthday, I was greeted with tasty lunchtime treats followed by a 9 hour work meeting.

Wish my work buddies knew me better.

Wish my work buddies knew me better.

Upon the adjournment of our conference the work boys wined and dined me, starting with a light-up cocktail menu that had to be pried from my paws when the waiter came to take it away.

Light up menu solves everything.

The only way this menu could get better was if there was a mirror on one side.

Birthday love

Feeling the love.

Wish I may I wish I might stretch my birthday out 'til next Friday night.

Wish I may, wish I might stretch my birthday out ’til next Friday night.

The week continued with a surprise visit from my fave Real Housewife from the South where we celebrated our mutual love of vodka.

Still sizzlin'

Presence is the best present!

'tini time.

Strawberry martinis never disappoint.

Cake!

Dessert #2 for the second straight night…

With wine and vodka under my sparkly birthday belt, it was time to party down with tequila.

Lime in the coconut time!

Birthdays make you thirsty.

Shits and giggles.

Margaritas make you topsy-turvy.

I-ei-ei-ei...love fri-ie-ie-ied ice cream!

Dessert three nights in a row makes your hips curvy.

As the handsome staff surrounded our table with song, I was also sweetly smothered in whipped cream.

Sing to me.

Laugh all you want. I’m keeping this sombrero.

Thing is…the hat was heavier than anticipated.

Marg me

Straining my neck for the love of tequila.

The burdensome headpiece proved to thwart all ability to sip margaritas with any shred of dignity.

Heavy crown.

Balancing act fail.

So I decided to keep the crown down, taking it easy on the high maintenance neck.

So I kept my head down.

Bow down to the gaudy crown.

What better way to round out the party spree than spending it with Ma and my beloved rum?

Mama and me.

The grand finale.

My Skinny Pirate loving ass took to the bar stool that should have my name etched in it at Dalts (my Nashville version of Cheers).

photo 4

Captain Morgan I am obviously not.

The bday week wouldn’t have been complete without a little March Madness and a bloody mary now would it?

Winding down

The perfect wind down.

Like I ever wind down...

Like I ever wind down.

At least my fabulous friend knew exactly what I would need come Sunday evening.

Sunday

…for after all the celebrating is over…

Exhausting.

Clearly working off all of the extra calories consumed through the week was a major concern.

Party on indeed.

CBXB

CBXB!

 

 

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

Getting together with my gal pals always starts off with classy intentions.

Sometimes, we start at a local Nashville winery where the owner is out and about rubbing elbows with visitors. And being that this winery dude used to be in one of country music’s biggest duos, Brooks and Dunn we have no shame in asking for a photo, naturally.

Does anyone else hear Neon Moon?

Patiently waiting for a neon moon with Kix Brooks while guzzling wine.

Typically on a ladies night, we begin with good intentions all dolled up with our lipstick still in tact.

Good intentions

Pretty in pink with lipstick, of course.

Then after about a cocktail and a half, photo shoots commence while our love for one another gushes throughout conversations.

Fun fun

I love you. No I love you! But I loooove you, Girl.

Once love is professed, it’s time for shots.

And then...

Cheers to classy times.

And then hell starts to break loose…like taking pictures of our party in the back of a mini van.

Photos!

Yep, that’s how we roll.

We feel free to ditch the shoes and any ounce of dignity as our killer heels hurt our feet.

Shoes off!

Who needs shoes when you have booze?!

Our magical powers of prowess surface as we will our significant others to call us.

Pleeeeeeeeease call!

Pleeeeeeeeease call!

We find other uses for feminine products while on cocktail number five.

Tampon Time

No Botox needed when you have a maxi pad.

The fun on girls night out never stops – not even for pangs of hunger.

STOP!

Won’t stop. Can’t stop.

Us trashtacular gals know when it’s time to stuff our faces like truck drivers in order to keep the party going.

Like this...

Eating cheeseburgers is hilarious business.

Once our bellies are full, we charge on divulging deep, dark secrets.

Secrets

Trust me, your secret is not safe with me.

Photo ops get a little trying as we start to lean like the Tower of Pisa.

Pic train

Wait, you leaning left or right?

Once we start feeling fat from cramming food in our bellies, yoga moves seem like a good idea.

Work it.

A plank pose. Who’s with me?

And then we get to feeling crafty. Who doesn’t want a marker creation on their forehead?

Get crafty.

Trust me. This is the best smiley face ever.

No gals evening is ever complete without the appearance of jazz hands.

Jazz hands, anyone?

Treating ten digits like extra accessories.

An evening with my sophisticated crowd wouldn’t be the same without helping a lady to a chair.

Hey-oh! It's not a GNO until someone is groped.

Hey-oh! It’s not a GNO until someone is groped.

But all good things must come to an end.

NOOOOOOOOO I never want the party to end!

NOOOOOOOOO I never want the party to stop!

Some of the bigger bawl babies have to be coddled – soothed into knowing there will be another night to galavant around with the girls.

Tell me I'm going to be OK...

Tell me I’m going to be OK…

Coming home in the morning light isn’t as glamorous as Cyndi Lauper makes it out to be but at least my mother isn’t yelling at me to get my life right.

To this. Sushi can suck it.

Dreams of next GNO dancing in my head.

While it may take us a little time to get back into our daily saddles again, we always have fun in the back of our minds as we work the week away.

Is it? Well, is it?!

Is it? Well, is it?!

Who’s in for the next night out?

CBXB

CBXB!