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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Embrace Your Inner Tree Hugger This Weekend

Saturday, September 29, it's super cool to go hug a tree, it's National Public Lands Day. It's a day to give back to the public lands either by improving or enhancing a recreational area. There's plenty of opportunity for volunteers to get out this Saturday into Tallahassee's public lands. Visit the site to see what interests you.

And, want to score a deal on a kayak? Sunday is the Wilderness Way's Annual Used Kayak Sale, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (4901 Woodville Highway). Would be a good time to get paddled, err, get a paddle or probably score an excellent deal on a used kayak.

*Sigh* I'm pretty sure I'll be heading out that way to check out the kayaks but I really shouldn't buy anything. I have that darn trip to Italy coming up. Although, I picked up another dog sitting/house sitting client so the extra cash will be nice. But need to save, save, save and not spend, spend, spend. Yes, dog sitting/house sitting is among one of my many talents. It's quite amazing I'm still single...

Oktoberfest's 'Round the Corner: Check out Bark and Wine Art for the Animals

Touching base on a previous post about Oktoberfest Puppy (and Kitty) Style. The folks over at the Tallahassee-Leon Community Animal Service Center have shared with me the line up of fabulous artists exhibiting between Oct. 12 and Jan. 7, 2008. Come kick off the art exhibition on October 12 with one heck of a bash.

Participating artists displaying their artwork:

Kathleen J. Bell
Debra Brienen
Alice Cappa (be-ewe-tiful work)
Pamela Casey
Carla Deterding
Colleen Fahey
Judith P. Felder
Alfreda C. Green
Yoshiko Murdick (fluid, dreamy watercolors)
Rachel Sandler
Sarah Thompson
Mike Vanderberg

Remember, there'll be brews and wine to savor, delish nibbles and desserts along with music to unwind. See ya Oct. 12 at 1125 Easterwood Drive, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. For more info, call: (850) 891-2966 or visit the site.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Made in Tallahassee: My Brother's Keeper

Remember my April article about Spike Lee speaking in Tallahassee and how a filmmaker gave Lee his DVD of a show called "My Brother's Keeper?" Well good news, Tallahassee! My Brother's Keeper "The First Impression": An Introductory Short Film to the Hit New Drama Series is now available here in Tallahassee at:

Vinyl Fever
2256 West Pensacola Street
Tallahassee, FL

CD Warehouse (Next to FAMU)
803 Railroad Ave.
Tallahassee, FL

If you can't get out and shop locally, pop over to The DVD has the first two episodes of the six-episode season dealing with a gritty, realistic look at college life. Support the local talent and check it out! So, did Spike Lee help out? Dunno. But if/when I find out, will report back.

Embracing the Inner Tree Hugger

Today I took the steps to earn TCC's Green Guide Certification under the Wakulla Ecotourism Institute. I've enrolled in the Ecotourism Institute and my first class is tomorrow. My purpose in enrolling is to help make me an expert in ecotourism, especially Florida ecotourism, and hopefully give me the tools I need to someday open a green/ecotourism business. Will this happen soon? Probably not, but slowly, I'm figuring out what I'm suppose to do with my life.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

What a Wild and Crazy Week It's Been

Can't believe the weekend is already half over, where did it go? Last weekend was awesome, it began with the Talla Festa parade and festivities (pictured) then off to Madison to visit O'Toole's Herb Farm (pictured). Guess it would have been more productive if I purchased some herbs but was afraid I'd kill them. I enjoyed browsing the herbs and chilling out in the garden. A late lunch at One Eleven Grill at 307 SW Pinckney Street in Madison followed. Oh, and save the date: Feb. 2, 2008 is O'Toole's Herb Farm's popular Just Because Festival.

Over the weekend I did pick up my "Keep It Tallahassee Sassy" t-shirt at Lake Ella's Quarter Moon Imports. The shirts are "one size fits most" and although I can fit into it, I won't be wearing it in public, it's a bit more form fitting than I like but goes to a good cause, supporting locally owned businesses.

And the week? I house sat for most of it, which means I didn't sleep well (but did pick up another client) and the fire department visited the office twice - don't ask.

So it's Saturday. Tonight it's the Tallahassee Rollergirls at the Fairgrounds then tomorrow a visit to TCC's Wakulla Center for the Ecotourism Institute Open House and finally back to Monticello for the FREE open house at Monticello Vineyards & Winery.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

An Evening with Tallahassee's Newest Ghost Hunters: S.I.T.E.

Remember this post bragging about the cool evening I had with Anna and Mike with S.I.T.E., Tallahassee's newest group of ghost hunters? Well, I finally got the article written and published. Enjoy it here.

And, if anyone is interested in joining the group, they're recruiting members! And how cool would that be to be a Tallahassee ghost hunter???

BTW - the photo is my hand holding the "ghost detector" (read the article to understand).

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

What's on Tap for My Weekend?

I confess to planning my weekends as soon as the previous one is ending. So what's in store for me this week? Updated Sept. 13: Well, the Democrat and the Mary Brogan Web site have been promoting speed dating this Friday, but after calling the Brogan this afternoon to find out more about it, I was told "We're not having speed dating and we're not sure where the paper got that info." I informed the gal that it's posted on the Mary Brogan calendar. Good news, thought. Was was told it should come back sometime after the first of the year, so guys and gals, you have one shot at it...

Also happening is TallaFesta: Tallahassee's International Festival. Some gala is Thursday night with the Carnival Village open Friday and Saturday but bulk of the festivities taking place Saturday....moving to the rest of the weekend...Of course, there's the Friday Night Bounce downtown at Clydes and Costello's (a place to chill after the speed dating).

Saturday, I really want to head over to Madison to O'Toole's Herb Farm. I've heard it's a bit on the "granola" side, which means I'll love it! (Did you see this blog post? Feel free to share your comments!). Of course I'll let ya know how it is.

And if you haven't already joined, be sure to join the Tallahassee Area Kite Runners group so we can all receive a private, advanced screening of "The Kite Runner," based on the book. Check out my blog post about it here.

Private Screening of "The Kite Runner" in Tallahassee???

It could happen. I've taken on Paramount Vantage's challenge to set up an online community as part of the "The Kite Runner Loyalty Program and Competition." As the Kite Club Captain, I need to gather at least 100 members to the Tallahassee Area Kite Runners group and our handsome reward will be a private, pre-screening of "The Kite Runner" in Tallahassee. How cool would THAT be?

It's free to register and the screening would be sometime in October.

Why did I do this? I read the The Kite Runner because I was planning to join a book club. I found the book beautifully written yet ugly and dark, yet real. It sparked an interest in Afghanistan, which led to my March 2006 trip to Kabul. The book piqued my curiosity of what life is like for the Afghans so as crazy as it sounds, I made the journey. If you haven't found it yet, I kept a blog at:

I encourage anyone who's read the book, has an interest in good stories and films or just a curiosity about people to join the Tallahassee Area Kite Runners group. Hopefully, we can watch the film together and how cool would that be?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Message to Tallahassee Drivers: Breath and Slow Down!

Over the past week, I've seen three accidents HAPPEN, not just the aftermath, but actually happen. Driving to and from the new offices each day is exposing me more to Tallahassee drivers and frankly people, you need to simma down, breath and chill.

Yes, the traffic sucks, it takes me 30 minutes (used to take 15) to get home or the gym at night from work but cutting people off, speeding through "pink" lights (between yellow and mostly red) and my biggest pet peeve, "blocking the box" - you know, the INTERSECTION at a red light - isn't going to improve anything. And pay attention, people! Two of the three accidents I saw were caused by people on their cell phones, rear ending cars at red lights (the other was a motorcycle rear ending a car at a red light, hope the dude wasn't on a cell phone!).

Yesterday, I saw a pissed off driver follow a female driver into my gym parking lot so he could scream at her for stopping at a green light (she was making a right turn but couldn't because a pedestrian was in the crosswalk; the truck behind her slammed on the brakes and got pissed, guess he's a driver into obtaining points...). Road rage is pretty frightening.

Things you can do on the evening drive? Listen to NPR, either soothing music or commentary, turn on 87.7 and listen to the news on WCTV (for traffic reports), tune into Hank FM (my fave Tally radio station right now) and sing along with the classics or pop in a CD and learn a new language (which I should be doing for the Nov. trip to Italy). Alright, I'm a geek, but find something soothing during the drive time. Getting pissed off isn't going to change anything, it only makes things worse. Why can't we play nice on the road?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Visiting Monticello Vineyards & Winery

The things to do in Tallahassee keep surprising me. Maybe you already know about this but I just discovered the Monticello Vineyards & Winery (in Monticello) and spent Saturday morning picking luscious, sweet certified organic grapes. (I bet you thought I was a lush, sipping wine before noon, ha!) The winery produces no sugar added muscadine wine (as explained to me, the grapes are sweet enough and "want to become wine."). Dr. Cynthia Connolly is owner of Ladybird Organics, which operates the vineyard and winery.

During August and September, visitors can pick the grapes ($4 per pound) when the organic vineyards are open, Saturday, Sunday and Monday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (or by appointment).

I met Dr. Connolly, a lovely, smart, enthusiastic women who's been into organic farming before it was cool (the farm's been operating since 1989). She's quite proud of her operation, as she should be. She sells organic (chicken) eggs ($4 per dozen), too. More than a dozen varieties of muscadines are up for the picking and it doesn't take long to gather enough to do something with them (I've made muscadine jelly and muscadine grape butter, seasoned with cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves, yum!).

Haven't been to the Monticello Vineyards & Winery? It's an easy 30 minute drive east of Tallahassee and guess what? Sunday, September 23, the winery is holding an open house between 2 and 5 p.m. See ya there!

It'll be a busy weekend, the day prior I'll be at the Tallahassee Rollergirls last home game of the season (and I see they're still recruiting, hmmm, I've considered it...)

Thursday, September 06, 2007

ABC Wine & Spirits Wine Tasting

When I left for the office this morning, I was planning on hitting the gym after work. Later in the day, I remembered seeing a listing by the Tallahassee Democrat's Calendar Girl about a wine tasting at ABC Wine & Spirits on W. Tennessee tonight.

My friend CJ joined me for an evening of sampling dozens of wines, liqueurs and spirits, all for $5 (there were more than a dozen wines to sample, I was just at my limit). Best of all, the $5 included an ABC wine glass (to add to the collection) and a $3 off coupon on any purchase. I ended up taking home a bottle of St. Brendan's Irish Creme Liqueur, tastes just as good as Bailey's but less expensive.

The crowd was a youthful one but the twenty-somethings didn't dominate the scene. There were patrons of all ages mixing and mingling.

This particular ABC store has about three and four tastings a year but among all of them in Tallahassee, there's one about every month.

I'm definitely going to keep my eyes open for the next tasting in town and will have to keep my eyes on the Calendar Girl's listings.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Pizza and Pirates - Yum!

I realize it's only Wednesday but I feel the week has gotten off to a slow start. Tried lunch today at Mellow Mushroom (1641 West Pensacola St.) - yummo! It's a chain with restaurants located throughout the country but O-M-G! My pizza (Magical Mystery Tour - pesto base, spinach with Mozzarella with Portobello and button mushrooms, feta and jalapenos; $11.55 for a 10" pie + $2 root beer) was awesome and plentiful. Best of all, it tastes great cold so the left overs were my dinner. The outside is fun, bordering on quirky and inside is a dab of mystic whimsy with Nole influence. Look for the Jerry Garcia painted in a corner. While the pizza was amazing and service friendly and well, mellow, food is cooked to order and takes a while, in comparison to other lunch spots. If not on a schedule, I highly recommend the Mellow Mushroom.

Arrrr! Don't forget tomorrow is WCTV's Double Dollar Deals and 100, $50 gift certificates, sold for $25, valid at Pirate's Tiki Hut on Timber Island (Carrabelle River) go on sale. Being a fan of pirates (because International Talk Like a Pirate Day is coming up on Sept. 19 - if you didn't click the link then, do so now to learn the five basics of pirate talk!), I may have to scoop me up a certificate.

Speaking of food, I just published an article about the 8 flavors of Buffalo - enjoy!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Message to Tallahassee Dudes: Big, Loud Trucks Don't Impress Me

Tallahassee has a healthy population of trucks and over sized cars. My peeve isn't necessarily with their gratuitous size but the loud base which vibrates my little economy car. I'm afraid the paint's going to shake off the poor thing!

Yesterday I was somewhere on Tennessee St. waiting for the light in my little silver Saturn Ion, easily recognizable by the Brillo pad scratches on the hood (no, I didn't really use a Brillo pad on my car, last Sept. I road tripped up to Savannah and Charleston during the peak of love bug season and got a little zealous in saying goodbye to the buggers. So happened some of the paint rubbed off with them...). My daze into the red stoplight was shaken by vibrating bass to my left AND right. On either side of me were large trucks decked out with loads of bling and gadgets and young men behind each wheel.

I wondered why guys do this, deck their vehicles out with bling and blare the stereo? I honestly can't recall seeing a woman doing this. Hey, I enjoy a good bass every once in a while but I'm a modest chica, I don't feel the need to share it with everyone. Plus, isn't there some state law against this, passed last year??? theory on the subject: big vehicles are an extension of the Animal kingdom (no, not Disney's). In the animal world, when a male wants to attract a female, he needs to show her he's got the goods and he's the loudest and proudest. In the bird world, it's the male birds with all the color and flash. And, come mating season, it's the males who make the noise, take elk bugling (okay, for you Floridians, the male alligators bellow).

Humans are the superior members of the Animal kingdom, yet, do we still rely on basic animal techniques for courting a mate?