Jerry's Sno-cones

What can make any day better?

Taking a trip to Jerry’s sno-cones and having a good laugh with a friend!

This place is a little bit off the beaten path, but it's worth the drive from anywhere in the Memphis/Mid-South area. Luckily, I'm just a short drive away. So I've been partaking of Jerry's as a treat for over the last 6 years. In the last few weeks though, this little hidden gem, has gotten a ton of press. And it’s all for a good reason. They make some of the best sno-cones, sno-cone supremes (w/soft serve ice cream) and other deserts around. Plus they've recently expanded their menu to include some hot food like burgers and corndogs. Trust me - you can't go wrong. See the happiness below as proof:


Coffee + The Orange Cranberry Scone

I’ve been ridiculously tired the last few days, so I decided to stop off at High Point coffee this morning to get an iced beverage. Normally I would just get a drink, but this is my 6th or 7th workday in a row that I’m starting with an early morning meeting. Plus it’s also Monday. So I decided to go ahead and add a scone to my order.

The guy at the window always cracks me up. He’s wired from the amount of caffeine he’s ingested or has an IV filled with caffeine being directly pumped into him at a high volume. Either way, he’s mastered the art of being a people person/making people smile.

He hands over my drink and scone, before laughing and waving me off. I drove off with a contagious smile. A few minutes later I had already spilled coffee on myself, which only ½ soured my smile. I couldn’t wait until the office to eat this scone. I had to crack open my scone snack by the time I reached my second stoplight.
It was flavorful, but I felt a tad disappointed. I realized I was disillusioned because some of my favorite scones are created by my dear college friend Hilary aka Hils.

Hils is a cross between Betty Crocker, Martha Stewart and Charlotte York (ya know - from Sex in the City). She’s an incredible cook, entertainer, a posh dresser, a genuine professional and an outstanding friend. And did I mention that she’s one heck of a scone maker.

Eating this scone today, brought back the memory of when Hils came to visit me and a few other friends from college in Atlanta, GA. My friend Jon and I picked her up at airport from that red-eye flight that swept her in from NYC. When we arrived at the terminal, it was easy to spot Hils amongst the other passengers arriving. She was well put together and looked like she has arrived from a spa, not from the hustle and bustle of a large city.

She hopped in the car, greeted us with her own brand of merriment and presented a goody bag filled with some freshly baked scones. Who on earth wakes up at the crack of dawn, travels 1000+miles via a plane and brings fresh pastries to her friends?
That would be Hils. And these scones weren’t just ok. They were absolutely delicious. The scones were flavorful, savory and obviously made with love. Those scones perhaps may be an extension of Hils own personality. They are sophisticated, yet filling and provide sheer comfort to the pastry eater. All the things that bring a smile to ones face. This is quite similar to the same way that Hils brings a warm, genteel smile to all those she encounters.

So here is to trying to have a good day, remembering fond memories and celebrating those who make us smile.



Rock On Rach!!!

I was told by a friend who (somewhat regularly) reads my blog that my Lost Dog post was rather biting. And I can see that point of view, but I thought the whole incident/return of the dog at least deserved a verbal acknowledgment from the dog owner.

However, the Lost Dog incident is a strong lesson (or perhaps example) of human behavior and how WE (as individuals or society as whole) react. Every day WE are presented with certain incidents that can have positive or negative effects on our attitude/outlook for the day or week. Lost Dog was an example of a negative experience.

Rock On Rach is an example of a positive one…To fully understand this, I’m going to have to start a few weeks back.

A few weeks ago my mom celebrated a birthday. I had woken up extra early that day. My plan was to drop off her birthday present and a cup coffee as I headed to my office. Unfortunately I walked out to my car and had a flat tire. I was LIVID because I had car trouble* again!

Now cranky and frustrated I headed out the door to the repair shop. There I would sit and wait for a good chunk of the morning. Finally when the repair was complete, I decided I would still deliver my mom her presents and coffee (what the heck, i was already late).

I stopped at Starbucks near my mom’s office and waited in a long line. I occupied my time by responding to e-mails on my Blackberry. Finally I ordered my drinks and waited to pay. When I got to the register the Barista asked me what I ordered and rang it in. I eagerly handed over my card to pay, but she refused. Here was our conversation:

Barista: “It’s been taken care of…”
Rachiley: “What do you mean it has been taken care of? I haven’t paid. You just rang in my order.” (very confused)
Barista: “It’s been taken care of…”
Rachiley: “By who?” (still perplexed)
Barista: “It’s been taken care of for you today”
Rachiley: “By you?” (now curious)
Barista: “No, but it’s been taken care of…Have a nice day”

Getting no real answer, I just decided that if someone out there was going to be kind enough to buy my coffee. Then there was no real reason for me to continue being so cranky and irritated. Things are going to happen - long days at work, flat tires and little things people do/say that might irritate you. Some within your control and some that are uncontrollable.

But here I stood being taught a lesson by someone out in the there I may never meet. It was the value of blind generosity. This person was making my day better without even knowing it.

I continued with my day surprising my mom with her gift, but admitting the coffee I brought her was paid for by a stranger.

A few times since that incident I’ve bought coffee for strangers too. It has made me feel good doing something nice for someone I don’t even know. Maybe it will help turn someone’s day around like it did mind. Or maybe it could remind someone else that WE (as people) are generally happy and good in nature whether we know each other or not.

I know if anything that it garnished some appreciation from Barista who regularly makes my iced coffees, hot chocolates and teas on the way into work. Before I pulled away from the window this morning, after he handed me my drink, he said in his very stoner accent, “I like it a lot, Rock On Rach!!!”

*Car Trouble: I would get into the car trouble stats, but I’ll save that for another BlOG. Remember this is a positive blog today ;-)


Lost Dog

Parker and I ventured out for a walk on this steamy summer morning. It wasn’t particularly as early as we usually go, but it was early enough. As we walked along down the main street of our neighborhood we encountered a loose dog.

I’m not sure what kind of dog it was, but it was small to medium sized. The dog’s coloring was mainly black, with a large fluffy tail. It was very cute and seemed somewhat friendly as it wandered right up to us. Where did this dog belong? Who is the owner?

I looked around and only saw a runner far off in the distance. I coaxed the dog closer and noticed a dog collar w/tags.

“Come here little doggie, let me get a closer look at that tag.”

On one side of the tag it said, “Diva” and on the other side it said, “Bear” with the imprint of a phone number. I found myself talking aloud to both the dogs.

“I’m thinking I’m going to call you Bear, because you don’t really strike me as the diva type.” (a little giggling ensues) “But great, what am I supposed to do with you now? There is no address and I don’t have a phone. And I don’t have another leash. Parker- what are we going to do?”

I decided I couldn’t leave the dog, so I kept asking Bear to follow us as we headed to a friend’s house around the corner. Bear did pretty well following along. At one point I thought I may have lost her to the other side of the street. But after a whistle and a call she came right to my friend’s porch. I guess now you can officially begin to call me the dog whisperer.

I knocked on my friend’s door and waited. Uh-oh, she must not be awake. Then I heard her dog stir and start yapping like crazy after I rang the doorbell for the second time. A voice started to crack behind the closed door:

EBV - “Who is it???”
Rachiley - “Rachel”
EBV - “Rachel…what time is it?”
Rachiley - “I dunno, but I need your help…”

The door slowly opens to reveal my bed-headed friend looking at me like I’m crazy. I start to explain:

“You see, I’ve found this lost dog and I don’t have a phone with me. Can I borrow yours?” (as I motion to the black dog and plead my case in 5 seconds)

She looks at me frozen with her head cocked to the side. Maybe she's a little stunned from the bright sunlight creeping into her house. But a few seconds later she shuffles off and returns with her cell phone. I look at Bear’s tag and dial the number imprinted.

Bear’s Mom - “Hello…” (crackle, crackle, crackle)
Rachiley - “Hi, I’ve found…”
Bear’s Mom - “Hello…” (crackle, crackle, crackle)
Rachiley - “Hi, I’ve found you…” ( getting louder)
Bear’s Mom - “Hello…can you hear me” (crackle, crackle, crackle)
Rachiley - “Yes, I can hear you. Can you hear me!!!” (almost screaming)
Bear’s Mom - “Now I can hear you. You’re quite loud.” (in a tone of frustration)
Rachiley - “Hi, I’ve found your dog this morning on the main street. I wasn’t sure where you lived, but I have Bear at my friend’s house”
Bear’s Mom - “She must have gotten out? Where is your friend’s house?” (with a little concern)
Rachiley - “Near the intersection of Rose…”
Bear’s Mom - “Oh, well I live right around the corner. What’s the address? Oh wait I’m not dressed I just got out of the shower.”
Rachiley - “Well I have to walk back that way…”
Bear’s Mom - “Great, I’ll leave my front door open and be ready by the time you get here.” (sounding somewhat more chipper)
Rachiley - “See you…” CLICK (from Bear’s mom)

I handed the phone back and thanked my friend. She seemed delirious and will probably only remember this as a sleepwalking episode. I headed with the dogs toward Bear’s home. About 2 houses away a lady came out of her front door. This was not Bear’s mom, but the neighbor. Needless to say, the neighbor ended up escorting Bear the rest of the way home.

As I passed by the house, the neighbor pointed at me. Bear’s mom shouted:

“Where did you find her?”

I mentioned a few streets away. She shook her head, said something to Bear and continued talking to her neighbor. And that was it. It was almost like I didn't even exist. There was no thanks, thank you or have a good day. There was just a point, a question and continuation on with whatever their discussion was about. I now realized that maybe Bear’s mom was the DIVA in question from the dog tag!!!

Even though Bear’s mom didn’t seem to care what I had done, I knew I did the right thing. I would hope someone would do the same for me if Parker got out. I decided to continue my walk with Parker, but had to control myself from saying something sarcastic as I walked away.


Don't Give Up On Me

"You can ride it forever
Go as far as you can see
But don't give up on me
Yeah don't give up on me
You can drive to where ever
Do whatever makes you free
But don't give up on me
Don't give up me" -Graham Colton

I'm sure by now, many of you had given up hope that I would return to my old blogging grounds. But I sat here at the office this morning toiling away in between conference calls, troubleshooting errors and copy writing, when I started sing to myself. For those of you who know me well, this probably won't come to you as a shock. But I do occasionally startle myself when I hear something out or nowhere and catch myself (or other people catch me) signing. Today I heard Graham Colton's words in my head, "Don't give up on me!!!"

I started thinking, what a great way to reintroduce myself to the blogosphere. Please friends - "Don't give up on me!!!" I truly mean that statement. I hope to get back in to writing more. In all fairness I’ve been writing a lot lately offline, just not online in my blog. And when I have been online, I’ll admit I’ve been lingering with the likes of Facebook and Twitter…Where as we all know these short interactions are quite fun, but far too often don’t provide any substantial content.

So you may ask, what have I been up to the?
Long story short, I’ve been up to a lot. Here are few highlights of what I’ve done over the last few months:

- Death Cab For Cutie Concert w/Ra Ra Riot & Cold War Kids
- Indigo Girls Concert
- Spring Kickball (we are actually pretty good about 50% of the time)
- Riding my bicycle around the city
- Farmer’s Market, Strawberry picking and South Main Arts Fest
- Whad’Ya Know
- Learned about “Pay it forward”
- Memphis Redbirds Game & Fireworks
- Hiking at Shelby Farms
- And much, much more…

I hope that in the coming weeks I will be able to spend some quality time writing about some of the past adventures and posting some pictures. So don’t give up on me and maybe if you stick around I could entertain you for a bit. So stay tuned!


Ryan Adams & The Cardinals @ Minglewood Hall 3.18.09

Went to see Ryan Adams & The Cardinals last night at the new Minglewood Hall here in Memphis. It was a good show, but I know a bunch of folks were probably disappointed that the set seemed rather short and there was no encore. Other people were clamoring for Ryan to play songs off Whiskeytown or his solo albums, which was also a NO GO.

I really wasn't surprised by what he played or how it ended. I was however sad that he choose not to play Magnolia Mountain. He did however play Let It Ride and Come Pick Me Up. I'm going to see if I can track the entire set-list down. If I do, I will post it for you all here. In the meantime, you can check out the video I shot last night:


Up The Junction

Original by The Squeeze

Cover by Lily Allen