Saturday, July 30, 2011

(Re)Discover Chattanooga - Chattanooga Auction House

One of my favorite new things to do in Chattanooga is go to The Chattanooga Auction House. Since I am beginning to start thinking about furnishing a house of my own, I've enjoyed seeing the often eclectic offerings at the auction. The items primarily come from estate type sales, but there are some consignment, factory mistake, and overstock items as well. The jewelry selection was pretty impressive too. Diamonds, sapphires, rubies, his & her pieces. LOTS of sparkly things go gush over and try on as they are passed around. I've enjoyed learning about the different styles of furniture and glassware. It's also been nice to see how much these items go for, so I can get an idea of where my home furnishing budget needs to be.

The best part about the auction is that it's fun. The $10 registration fee is deducted from any purchases, and allows you 6 wine tickets and hors d'oeuvres. Even if you don't buy anything (and you probably will..some items go for as little as $10) the experience is a lot of fun. Three auctioneers take turns leading the auction, and they can be entertaining on their own. Add some friends, a little wine, & some really interesting auction items, and it's a low key, fun Saturday night activity. The auction is held the last weekend of the month, Saturday night, and finishing up Sunday afternoon.

This month I'm only able to go Sunday afternoon, but I checked out some of the items online, and this couch is something I have my eye on! Some really nice Victorian sofas went for under $200 last month, so we'll see! I really love tufted furniture right now, and if I get it, I'm toying with the idea of keeping it grey, or dying it brown. Depends on what other furniture I find! :)

Chattanooga Auction House
2423 Broad Street • Chattanooga, TN 37408
Phone:423.266.6603 • Fax: 423.267.7875 • E-mail:
Cost: $10 registration (required) Hors d'oeuvres (Sat. & Sun), 6 wine tickets (Sat. only)
Auction Dates & Time: The last Sat. & Sun. of each month. (5:30 & 1:00)
Auction Preview: Monday - Friday, the week preceding the auction.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Wish List -

I've hinted that I'm not going to be in my apartment long. I'm not going to jinx myself by letting the whole cat out of the bag yet, so I thought telling you what was on my dream house wish list is a good way to introduce the topic and for you to get to know me better. When I do get to tell you about my next move, this will help explain why I am so excited. Mind you, I'm not one of those people who has spent years planning this out, but I'm also old enough to know what I like, so here you go.
  1. Laundry Chute - My grandmother has one, and its awesome. I'm really bad about leaving clothes on the bathroom floor, and not having to walk laundry to the laundry room is a bonus my lazy self could get used to.
  2. Built-Ins - I love books, and built ins just look soooo much better than bookcases. I like things that have purpose and belong.
  3. A fireplace - They're awesome. Mesmerizing and energy efficient. What better way to assure your energy is coming from renewable resources than to burn a fire.
  4. A Studio Space - I can do it, but I'm not a fan of packing and unpacking my stained glass stuff.
  5. A Garden - I'm going to have a garden. Its just a matter of if its pots on a patio, or a large garden space.
  6. Water - Living on the water is just peaceful, and I like having water in my life.
  7. Grill & Patio - My favorite place in Clemson was Pete & Lisa's patio. Casual and welcoming, it was perfect, and I'd like something similar.
  8. A bathtub - weird as it is, I'm not a shower person. Give me a long bath any time.
  9. Things that have history/stories - This comes from what I don't like more than what I love. I HATE when they put random nick-knacks/art in rooms on tv. This goes back to liking things that have purpose. I always find myself saying, yes that's pretty, but why is it there?
  10. Dark woods - I love the old library / cigar rooms. The dark wood is comfortable and elegant. This is where I should probably mention that I have expensive tastes.
  11. Bonus: a big, square, brown, leather, tufted ottoman.
Something I hate: I hate big theme rooms that don't match the rest of the house. I think it's tacky. A bathroom with a funky shower curtain is one thing, a living room that looks like the ocean is another.

I have been very happy for years in various apartments with some or none of the above features. I can pretty much be happy anywhere.

So now you know what I like and don't like in a house. :) This probably doesn't surprise you if you know me well (maybe you rolled your eyes at the laundry chute), and if you don't know me well, well, now you know me a little better.

What I'm curious about is what is on your dream wish list, or what is your favorite part of your house. Even you guys I know "in real life" I don't think I know the answer, and honestly I'm kinda curious.

PS - I love the fact that the phrase 'mind you' rolled out in the first paragraph without me trying to be southern.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Tomatoes & Basil

I don't have much of a garden on my 4'x6' patio (have I mentioned it's tiny before?) but I do have tomatoes and basil for DAYS! Here's a list of what I've done with it all so far:

  1. Freeze dried basil - Whole basil leaves in ziplock bags in the freezer, when its frozen, you can crunch it up rather than cutting by hand. I use this stuff for seriously everything.
  2. Simple 15 minute sauce - olive oil, garlic, chopped tomato, basil & a little butter (for flavor). Its a light marinara, I love me some olive oil. You can add vodka & chopped onion to make a thicker, creamier vodka sauce
  3. Bowie Pasta w/sliced cherry tomato, basil, artichoke & Parmesan. Sauce cooks for 5 minutes tops, & the tomatoes hold their shape.
  4. Frozen pizza topped w fresh basil, sliced cherry tomato & garlic
  5. Tomato sandwiches on local baked bread
  6. Tomato mozzarella salad (sliced cherry tomato or dices full size)
  7. Pasta salad w/fresh tomatoes
  8. Guacamole w/fresh tomatoes
  9. Slow cooked pasta sauce w/onion, bell pepper, garlic, basil, red wine (pork chop) This you can cook until the pork chop falls off the bone.
Some things I want to try:
  1. Pesto
  2. Homemade tomato juice for Bloody Mary's
  3. Salsa
  4. Large Batch Pasta sauce. If I was really cool, I'd can it. But I'm not there yet.

This is what is still growing! I'm going to have Tomatoes for DAYS!!

Editor's Note: I forgot to include that this post falls in the category of GTTC (Garden To Table Challange) over at Greenish Thumb! Love this series :)

Friday, July 15, 2011

My Patio

One of my favorite things about my apartment is my patio. It's small, only 4' x 6', but since I'm only going to be here for another few months, I'm ok with that. Most of what I planted this year are annuals, so I don't have to worry about moving too much, but I do have one or two perennials I started that I will transplant when I move later this fall. Take a look around, & I hope you enjoy my patio!

(Left) I wish I had gotten the morning glories & moss roses in bloom. The effect with the Black Eyed Susans & Gerbera Daisy is very pretty.
(Right) Boxwood Basil in bloom with standard basil, mint & young tomato
(Below) A hanging basket I made shortly after mothers day. Look how much its grown!

I'm also very happy with my tomatoes. These were planted in May (when I moved into my temporary apartment) so I'm lagging behind the rest of Zone 7, but my "Sweet 100" cherry is still blooming and starting to ripen, and I'm hoping my "Celebrity" will be soon to follow.

This post is my contribution to Garden Blogger's Bloom Day hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Visit her blog to see what else is blooming around the world!

Friday, July 8, 2011

(Re)Discover Chattanooga - Brainerd Farmers Market

Tomorrow morning I'm going to make my first trip to the Brainerd Farmers Market! I'm a hippie at heart, and I'm glad it's 'trendy' in Chattanooga to be a locavore. It makes so much sense to shop local, especially for food. It's fresher, cheaper, and much better for the environment. That's winning on all sorts of levels. I signed up for the e-mail list that tells you what to expect at the market by farm/vendor.

Here's what I'm most excited for:

Lowe's Family Farm: fresh produce, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, bell peppers, and other fresh veggies and homemade fried pies and jellies. I can't wait to see the squash and bell peppers. And probably a fried pie for breakfast.

Homestead Beef: A great selection of grass fed beef. I have no beef in my freezer. This is very rare, I hope to fix this.

Link 41: Handmade artisanal sausages, bacon. Mmmm, Bacon
Dixie Soaps: Goat milk soaps, lotions & lip balms. Felted soap fromage blanc & feta goat cheeses, and fresh eggs. Can't wait to bring home some feta.
Rising Fawn Nursery: Lots of nice herbs, they are getting nicer by the day. Also some new perennials in addition to the new ones I brought last week. I'm a nut for plants, we'll see if I can keep my hands in my pockets.
Niedlov's Breadworks: breads and pastries. I've seen some local restaurants that use this bread. Can't wait to check it out.

Pocket Farm

Heirloom tomatoes, sungold cherry tomatoes, hot and sweet peppers, fresh basil and cut flowers. Everybody talks about heirloom tomatoes. We'll see what all the fuss is about.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

(Re)Discover Chattanooga - Pops in the Park

One of the things I love about Chattanooga, is how much the community supports the arts & local music. All year long there are free and/or affordable arts, music, and food festivals in town. Pops in the Park is a free concert showcasing the Chattanooga Symphony and put on by Chattanooga Presents.

In recent years the event has taken advantage of the great green spaces in Coolidge Park, nestled between two bridges, on the banks of the TN river. Coolidge is great because it sits between the Market & Walnut Street bridges on the North Shore of the TN river. The bridges define the space, & the view across the river to downtown is fantastic. The whole setting gives you a nice feeling of being close to downtown, but secluded & just a little separate from the energy of downtown. Its very peaceful.

This year Pops in the Park was the first performance of our new Maestra Kayoko Dan, fresh off her honeymoon. The crowd was huge, and the music was appropriately patriotic. American composers were featured in addition to the expected music. The Tennessee Waltz was played, an in a nod to the former & beloved Maestro of the Symphony, Bob Bernhardt, a little Star Wars theme was played as well.

The finale of the concert signaled the beginning of the fireworks. The Riverbend fireworks are a tough act to follow, especially on a budget which was so tight the whole even was almost cancelled, but I think everyone enjoyed it, and for me personally I know they were better than at Y Beach in Clemson. ;)

Hope everyone had a great 4th of July!!

Friday, July 1, 2011

It's Friday!

I am really excited about this weekend. I don't have any big plans for the holiday, but I'm excited. I have been busy the past 3 weekends entertaining, doing the family thing, going to auctions etc. All of which is great & fun, but there hasn't been any down time. My agenda for this weekend: sun, fireworks, and a couple stained glass projects.

Since I moved to Chattanooga 6 months ago, I haven't done any stained glass projects that weren't under a strict deadline. I can't tell you how much it means to me to have a just for fun project to do for Backstreets in Clemson. So yes Stephen Colbert, I too am excited it's Friday :)

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