Monday, March 6, 2017


This weekend, we had the opportunity to try Sperry's with some friends.  Ashlynn had been to Sperry's before, but I had never been.  Clearly... I've been missing out.

One thing we do with our friends is order several appetizers and share everything.  I love doing this because you get to try so many different things.  We ordered a shrimp cocktail with fresh cocktail sauce.  We also ordered BBQ Shrimp and Grits.  The sweet BBQ sauce with the savory shrimp and grits was incredible!

We also ordered Steak and Grits.  Are you noticing a theme?  The juices blended in with the grits to create a great flavor combination!  We also got Brisket Sliders and Crab Cakes as well.

If you're around Nashville, this is a great local place with two locations.  If you haven't checked out the Around our City page, it's listed there with many other options to help when planning your next trip to Nashville.

Thursday, March 2, 2017


A few months ago, I was fortunate enough to travel to Chicago for the first time on business.  I could spend all day talking about how incredible the city was, the culture there, and THE.FOOD... but, today I want to share with you a great place to try when you're visiting!  Feast your eyes on Eleven City Diner!

I have to be honest.  When I shot these photos, I never had in mind that I would blog about the diner.  I mostly was trying to share these with my wife so we could visit when we both come back this fall.  The atmosphere is incredible!  Although not pictured, when you walk in, to the left, there are walls full of candy.  To the right is the dining area you see below.  The atmosphere was electrifying!

In my eyes, ANY place that serves breakfast all day is all right in my book!  Eleven City Diner is no exception.  The hardest decision you'll have to make is to eat breakfast or dinner.  Believe me, the choice is hard to make.

Another difficult choice you'll make is which house made root beer to try.  I vote going for both.  Life is short, right?  Classic is your more traditional flavored root beer, but the blonde... is like cream soda on steroids!  It was incredible!

The traditional burger and fries only scratch the surface of options you'll have to choose from.  If you go for the burger, go big and get the pretzel bun.

We finished off the night with fresh coffee and red velvet cake that took me two days to eat.  When we go back, I'm definitely getting breakfast!  You can check out their menu here!

Monday, December 19, 2016

quick and easy waffles

 A good waffle is hard to find these days.  I'm a texture kind of guy.  I prefer a crisper outer layer with a soft sweet core.  These waffles don't disappoint!  They're perfect for a cold morning.

Quick and Easy Waffles

2 cups self-rising flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1 3/4 cup milk
6 tablespoons butter, melted
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt

Combine the flour, sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl.  In a separate bowl, whisk the milk, vanilla, and eggs together as well.  Gradually combine the wet and dry ingredients together until blended.  Next, add the melted butter at the end until just combined.  Pour the batter into a greased waffle makerfollowing the cooking instructions for your specific maker.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Chicken with Lemon Basil Zucchini Noodles.

I'm back!...with a quick recipe by popular demand!  This Chicken with Lemon Basil Zucchini Noodles is sure to please and is good for you too!  I hope you like it!


4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
4-5 medium sized zucchini
2 cups basil, stems removed, packed and
3 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup butter, clarified
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 lemon, juiced
salt and pepper to taste


  1. Dice basil and garlic, and place in a bowl with olive oil, red wine vinegar, and lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
  2. Next, clarify your butter.  Clarifying sounds fancy, but really, you're just removing the milk solids from the butter.  Heat butter in a medium high skillet until the butter begins to foam.  Skim the foam with a spoon and discard.  What you're left with is amazing. wonderful. heavenly clarified butter.
  3. After you've clarified your butter, place chicken in your skillet and allow to brown and cook on both sides, usually three to five minutes on both sides, depending on size.
  4. While your chicken is cooking, using a spiralizer, spiralize the zucchini and set aside.
  5. When chicken is done, remove from pan, place zucchini noodles in skillet and toss with chicken drippings and remaining clarified butter. 
  6. Lastly, toss the lemon basil mixture into the noodles and saute' for 2-3 minutes, until garlic is cooked and mixture is incorporated.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Life has taught me a lot in the thirty-one plus years I've been here.  It still feels weird saying that... in my mind, I still wonder why I'm not twenty-five anymore.

Life has taught me there are seasons of joy, seasons of struggle, seasons of pain, and seasons of growth.

Life has taught me that there will always be people that are rooting for you to fail... and believe me, when you're down, they'll take their foot (that is clearly covered with leftover dirt from other people they've knocked down) and kick you even farther into the pit you've been trying your hardest to climb out of... so far that you can barely see the light.  Remember... the light is there, even if you can't see it.    You know who I'm talking about.  These are the people that are so miserable, they just can't shake the notion that they must try to drag you down into the misery that they experience on a daily basis.  You know, the people that never have anything positive to say about anything.  We don't even have to talk about when these people try to hold every little thing they've EVER done for you over your head.  They will... for sure!  And trust me, they won't be letting you forget about that time they gave up everything (all of their hopes and dreams combined) to stop and buy you a six pack of Krispy Kreme Donuts when you were having a bad day twenty years ago.  Let's make a rule:  Don't let them get inside your head.  Just don't.  Trust me on this one.

Life has also taught me about compassion...  You know what I'm talking about... giving without the expectation of receiving.  Seeing someone in need, and openly, willingly offering a hand when they need it more than ever before with no intentions of receiving any benefit from it whatsoever.  These types of people don't show up often, but when they do, you can't miss it.

Whatever season you're going through, this Cinnamon Swirl Bread can only do great things for you.  Think cinnamon roll, but on steroids.  This recipe is adapted from Joy the Baker.  You can find the original recipe here, as well as how to actually roll the bread, and place it in the skillet.

This bread is great for breakfast, a midnight snack, or even as a gift.  The awesome thing about this bread is no stand mixer is required.  It's all done by hand.  Please don't let this bread intimidate you... because it's worth it.  You won't regret this.  Let's get to it.

Cinnamon Swirl Bread
Adapted from Joy The Baker

For the Dough:
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
3/4 cup whole milk, lukewarm
1 large egg yolk
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 1/4 cups All-Purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
a bit of olive oil for greasing the bowl
For the Filling:
1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
*Powdered Sugar (for topping)
In a medium bowl stir yeast with sugar. Stir in  the lukewarm milk and then add the egg yolk and melted butter.  Whisk together until thoroughly combined.  Allow mixture to rest for 5 minutes.  It should foam and froth.
In a large bowl whisk together the flour and salt. Pour the milk mixture over the dry ingredients and start kneading it until it pulls away from the edges of the bowl. Place dough on a lightly floured counter and knead by hand for about 10 minutes more.  Dough ball should be smooth and damp, without being too sticky.  Shape dough into a ball.
Grease a large bowl with olive oil.  Place the dough in the bowl and cover.  Allow to rest at warm room temperature for about 1 hours, or until doubled in size.
While the dough rises, whisk together the butter with sugar and cinnamon for the filling. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 375degrees F. Grease a 10-inch cast iron skillet.  Set aside.
After the dough has doubled in size, place it on a lightly floured counter and knead twice.  Using a rolling pin to roll the dough to a rectangle of about 18×12 inches.
Spoon the cinnamon filling over top, spreading evenly, leaving a clean 1-inch border around the edges. Start by rolling the longest side of the dough.  The roll will be a bit lumpy because of all the berries. Using a sharp knife, cut the log in half length-wise leaving 1-inch of the edge uncut.
Start braiding the two pieces, by carefully lifting the left strand over the right strand.  Repeat this motion until you reach the bottom of the dough.  Press together to seal.  Join the two ends, creating a circle with the dough and press together.
Using two swift hands, transfer the dough ring to the prepared cast iron skillet. 
Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.  Top with powdered sugar.  Allow to cool for about 30 minutes before slicing and serving. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Peaches and Cream Oatmeal

We celebrated my Mom's 51st birthday last week. I can't believe she is 51. I can't believe, even more, that I'm 30!

I remember when 30 year olds were... old! But, as I grown older and wiser, I've learned we 30 year-olds are one step ahead of the game.

Anyway... Mom's birthday. We had cake. We had Chocolate Chess Pie. We had more cake.

So, naturally, I was craving something light, something to get me back on track. This healthy version of Peaches and Cream will do just that.

I like my oatmeal soupy. If you like yours a little thicker, like my wife, just omit some of the liquid.

Peaches and Cream Oatmeal

1/2 cup of Quick Oats (Steel Cut Oats are perfect for this as well)
1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk, divided
1/4 cup water
4 packets Truvia (you can use more or less... I like mine sweet)
1 teaspoon packed dark brown sugar
handful of sliced fresh peaches

Bring 2/3 cup milk and 1/4 cup water to boil, and stir in oats and peaches, and let boil for a couple of minutes until you reach desired consistency. Add truvia and top with an additional 1/4 cup milk and brown sugar.

200 calories (excluding peaches)

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Biggest Loser Run/Walk

How's it going guys? We have an announcement to make! Ashlynn and I will be running in the Biggest Loser Run/Walk in Jackson, Mississippi on April 6! A lot of our readers probably don't know this, but Jackson is our old stomping ground. Ashlynn and I both grew up around Jackson, and we're excited to be going back for the Biggest Loser Run/Walk! We chose the 5k race instead of the half-marathon. Let's be real. We have two weeks to really train and prepare, and although I have no trouble walking 13.1 miles, I'm not sure we could handle running it!

Ashlynn actually just found out about the race last night, and asked for me to do it with her. We're extremely excited about it, and can't wait! We'd like to thank everyone for their support. It'll be really interesting down their in the Mississippi humidity. Anyone who runs knows exactly what I mean!

Anyone who is interested can go here to find out more information and see other cities they are having races as well. It is a run/walk, so I would encourage anyone that wants to get in shape or simply wants to be more active to join us. It's so easy to be discouraged and intimidated, but don't let that deter you from doing this. It'll be a great experience that, I believe, will leave a lasting impression on you.

Here is a map of the 5k portion of the race. Also, if you'd like a training schedule to learn how to build up to running a 5k, here is what Ashlynn and I have used in the past. It's an eight week program, but it's for people that never run, which was Ashlynn and I a couple of years ago. It's tough, but totally doable.

Thank you guys for your support!