Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Getting Ready for Work Made Easy

Do any of my lady readers try on multiple outfits before picking the perfect one to wear?  I swear my bed and closet look like a tornado hit them whenever I'm deciding on an outfit to wear.  One month ago, I switched from scrubs to business casual five days a week and it's gotten even worse!  Don't get me wrong, it's GREAT wearing "normal people clothes" to work, but it's not fun when you need to a) look professional for eight hours and b) be comfortable.

I had the same problem when we were living in Texas this past year.  I had to wear "normal people clothes" five days a week for all of the appointments and errands we ran and was having trouble deciding on outfits to wear.  After talking about capsule wardrobe with my friend and sister, I decided to at least try an style app to help me pick out my clothes.  I knew my wardrobe in Texas was a small portion of what I had at home, but it was a start.  So....I downloaded the "Stylebook" app on my iPhone and spent several hours taking photos of my clothes loading them into the app.  It was WORK and I must admit that if I had a job at that time, I know for a fact I would've given up after 5 mins.  I just didn't have anything else better to do with my spare time so I uploaded 31 items and 8 pairs of shoes to the app.  I used the app for most of May and maybe twice in June and I haven't looked at it since.  And I still haven't decided if I will switch to a capsule wardrobe.  I like the concept, but haven't actually done it.  After being home a couple of weeks, I tossed the shirts and pants I don't wear into a donation pile and dropped them off last week. I definitely think the Stylebook app would be helpful for someone who has a capsule wardrobe.  I believe it could help them match up items in their wardrobe to make an outfit that they might not have matched up otherwise.  To give you an idea of what the Stylebook app is capable of, I've taken a screenshot of a couple of outfits from May 2015.

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone Screenshot)

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone Screenshot)

As I said earlier, I gave up on the Stylebook app months ago. After a few days at my new job, I went back to my "elementary school days."  Do any of your remember when your mom made you choose your outfit the night before and hang it on the wooden hook in your room?  Well, folks, I still do that and it's worked out perfectly.  Actually, every Sunday afternoon or evening, I pick out the entire week's outfits and line them up on an empty rack in my walk-in closet.  It has saved me tons of time in the morning.  Today, I actually slept in for another 15 mins past my alarm and still managed to get out of the door on time because I didn't have to think about what I was wearing today.  I had it lined up in my closet ready to grab and put on and my jewelry was laid out on my dresser. It's not the greatest of photos, but I did take a selfie of my ootd and sent it to my sister and my Mom this afternoon.

9.16.15 #ootd 

Another bonus of having a business casual dress code is wearing jewelry again!   My costume and fine jewelry isn't collecting dust in my jewelry box anymore.  I was lucky if I wore one piece of jewelry a week when I spent time with girlfriends out at the movies, dinner or for Wine Club.

How do you plan your outfits for the week?  Do you use an style app?  I'd love to hear your comments!

Thanks for stopping by JennyPennyAho!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Jenny's Best of San Antonio/Great Attractions Edition

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho

Last week, I shared the Great Eats of San Antonio and now it's time to review the best attractions in San Antonio.  We were in South Texas just shy of one year and we explored during the winter, spring and summer months.

When you or a family member is in a wheelchair, one of the toughest jobs is finding accessible attractions that are actually worth seeing and fun.  Seth and I had both visited San Antonio in the past, so we weren't interested in going to the Riverwalk, despite it being accessible with elevators.

During the winter months, we ventured out to movie theaters and got caught in the rain A LOT.  Texas just had a bad winter and the spring brought tons of precipitation. I wanted to find places to visit that kept us indoors and out of the rain, so after a little research and phone calls, we booked tickets at local sporting events and other local attractions. Once the rain stopped, we ventured outdoors to explore more attractions.

::Outdoor Attractions::

Botanical Garden - We visited during the winter months (when it wasn't raining) and had a lovely time.  There was an artist who had built Lego's in different shaped flowers and an insect too. Unfortunately the rose garden wasn't blooming when we visited, but I've heard it's gorgeous.  It was wheelchair/stroller accessible.  By the time we got to the rose garden, Seth was tired and it would have been a bumpy ride. Thankfully the rose garden wasn't in bloom yet, so we didn't feel like we were missing anything.
Photo Credit: Rebecca Shane
Seth and I under the waterfall in the fern room.

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho
I've never seen a pineapple other than in the grocery store.
Have you?

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho
I couldn't help but take a photo of "Sleeping Beauty's Castle."
It is my FAVORITE Disney movie.
Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho
I swear this bee was at least 4 feet long hanging suspended from the ceiling in an atrium.
It is made ENTIRELY of Legos.
Seth was in awe.

Japanese Tea Garden - We visited this garden in July 2015. This garden was so lush and gorgeous and best of all it was FREE!  It was wheelchair/stroller accessible.
Photo credit: JennyPennyAho 

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho
Downtown Riverwalk - It's a given, you travel to San Antonio and you stop by the riverwalk.  It's definitely worth seeing if you've never been to San Antonio.

San Antonio Missions - Calling all history buffs.  This was a nifty "traveling" tour of the 18th century missions along the San Antonio River.  My friend Amy and I toured them on Easter Sunday this past spring.  Most of them remain as functioning churches.  It is wheelchair/stroller accessible.

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
San Juan Mission - San Antonio, TX

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
San Juan Mission, San Antonio, TX

::Other things to do outdoors::

Pearl Brewery district -- Check to the Pearl Brewery Farmers Market during the summer months (Sat & Sun). I bought some fresh local produce and meats from local butchers.  I even tasted some wine from Poteet, TX.  It was a bit too sweet for my liking, but still something new to try. It is wheelchair accessible/stroller accessible.  Lick and Boiler House (mentioned in Jenny's Best of San Antonio/Great Eats Edition) are located in Pearl Brewery district.

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)

Explore the surrounding area and parks:
The Texas wildflowers are gorgeous including the Texas Blue Bonnet, which is the state flower. My sister lives in a small town outside of Austin and took Hugo and her dog to a field of blue bonnets.  I've included that photo she took of Hugo and some photos of the flowers that were in the backyard and park located near the communal house we lived in from November to August.
Photo Credit: Rebecca Shane (JennyPennyAho's sister)
Hugo posing in the Texas Blue Bonnets

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
Spring in Texas
Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
Spring in Texas with hundreds of butterflies.

::Indoor & Outdoor Sporting Events::

AT&T Center:  Rampage Hockey was a lot of fun during the winter months.  We specifically asked for wheelchair accessible and lucked out with seats right on the ice in section 18.  On Superbowl Sunday, there was a party at the communal house and I won two tickets to a Spurs game.  I also got a free ticket to see the Largest Indoor Rodeo. The rodeo is held annually in February at the AT&T Center.

Photo credit:  JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
T-Bone the Rampage mascot came down to our area for a photo.
The guy on the far left in the photo is actually a photographer -- we were right on the ice!

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho
Seth enjoying the Rampage hockey game in section 18.
There is NOTHING better than ice hockey seats right on the ice! Nothing!
Photo credit:  screenshot of Rampage Hockey website
Section 18 was AWESOME.  There are 3 rows of seats in a raised seating format.
Our "handicapped seats" were next to the raised seating. I had a chair
to sit on and Seth sat in his wheelchair. 

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho
T-shirt shooter at the Spurs game back in February 2015.

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
Indoor Rodeo.  I had nose bleed seats, but still enjoyed the evening.
Since the seats were not accessible for Seth, he stayed home and I went by myself.

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
Indoor Rodeo

San Antonio Missions Baseball -- Located at the south end of San Antonio on 90 west.  We are huge baseball fans and enjoyed every minute of the game! Our friends Melanie and Nick joined us and it was a wonderful evening out.

Photo credit: Melanie Dolese
Before the game started.

Photo credit: JennyPennyAho
Seth enjoying some funnel cake during the game.

Photo credit:  JennyPennyAho
Great view of the field.  We were directly behind 1st base.

Have I talked you into visiting Texas now?  We never thought we'd be living in San Antonio, but we made the best of our stay in Texas despite the circumstances.  As you can see, we got out to do fun stuff and have a lot of cherished memories now.

Hope ya'll had a Happy Thursday!  Wow!  I never thought I'd type or say ya'll, but I guess Texas wore off on me. Thanks for stopping by JennyPennyAho!

Monday, September 7, 2015

Jenny's Top 5 Red Wines (Under $20) for Autumn

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho
We're already one week into September and that means autumn is right around the corner. Pretty soon the aspens leaves will begin to change to gorgeous orange and yellow hues, there will be "pumpkin" everything and then the holidays will be upon us. Time flies, doesn't it?

Autumn is my favorite season.  I love the smell of autumn when the air is cool and crisp.  I especially love autumn because I can enjoy the warm, spicy taste of red wine. 

I thought this would be the perfect time to share my Top 5 Red Wines for Autumn so you can stock up your wine racks!

Mark West - Pinot Noir
Appellation California
Less than $15/bottle
My friend Tawyna introduced me to Mark West.  
It's my go-to Pinot Noir.  I always have it in my wine rack.

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho

Red Rock Winery - Winemaker's Blend 
less than $10/bottle
When I lived in Las Vegas, my friend Carlie found this great winemaker's blend. Whenever we had a gathering, 
it typically made an appearance. Thanks Carlie!  
I already have it in my wine rack ready for fall! 

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho

Jim Barry - The Lodge Hill Shiraz
Less than $20/bottle
I've only had this Shiraz once, but it was memorable. Our friends
Matt and Lindsey were about to  move to Alaska and we took them to a 
cute little french bistro (Marche Bacchus) in Las Vegas.  
Matt and I picked two bottles of wine and this one 
was fabulous!  It may be hard to find in stores, but I found it online
when I was verifying whether it was under $20. It's a must-try Shiraz!

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho
Apothic Red - Winemaker's Blend
Less than $12/bottle
This beautifully labelled wine was given to me as a gift 
by my friend Sarah. I believe it was for my birthday or maybe
after I babysat her son (?).  Either way, it is a lovely 
red blend I always have it in my wine rack. 

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho

Chateau Ste. Michelle - Cabernet Sauvignon
Columbia Valley
less than $15/bottle
I believe I first tried this at our Las Vegas Wine Club.  
It is my go-to Cabernet Sauvignon.  It has a wonderful 
taste and I realized I didn't have any in my wine rack so
 I will be picking up a bottle on my next trip to the store.

What better way to start off fall than to have great red wine stocked up and ready for your next gathering!  

I've mentioned Wine Club in my Screaming Snow Cone post and quite a bit in this post.  Some of you know what Wine Club is and others have never heard of it.  So please stay tuned for Jenny's Wine Club Essentials!

Friday, September 4, 2015

Jenny's Best of San Antonio/Great Eats Edition

Photo Credit:  JennyPennyAho
From September 2014 to August 2015, my husband and I made San Antonio our "temporary" home. One month ago, we left Texas and moved back to our home in Southern New Mexico.  Despite the circumstances for going to Texas, we made the best of it and enjoyed some delectable food.

For those of you who don't know, my husband is in a wheelchair, so if we are going to a new place/restaurant, we have to plan before heading out.  It's not that big of a deal because most restaurants are accessible, but I made a habit of calling ahead to ask about accessibility and parking.

Without further ado, here's my list of great eats in San Antonio, Texas!

Dough - Tucked away in a strip mall, you'll find Dough. It was featured on the Food Network so we looked up the address and checked it out.  We thoroughly enjoyed the fresh mozzarella cheese plate and "pork love" pizza.

Chester's Hamburgers - Great dive restaurant, that's been around since the 1980s and still serve great burgers.  It's probably one of the biggest burgers I've never eaten -- width wise, not in height.  I definitely didn't eat dinner that night.  There isn't a website, but the address is:  1006 NE Loop 410, San Antonio, TX 78288

Bliss - Wonderful American cuisine.  My sister-in-law and brother-in-law took me out while Seth was still in inpatient therapy.  This restaurant has a wonderful outdoor patio.  I ordered the
Duck/Foie Gras and absolutely loved it.

Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden - Tapas, beer and wine.  What more could you ask for?  We went here multiple times during our time in San Antonio, including on Valentines Day with our great friends.
Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho
All smiles and pleasantly stuffed after our wonderful
Valentine's Day dinner with great friends.
Sushi Zushi -- We went to the Colonnade location and the "Colonnade Roll" was our favorite. We went here for our anniversary and many times for lunch and dinner ,as well as happy hour. It has various locations around San Antonio.
Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
My eyes look demonic, but that's what I get for having big eyes.
When I attempt to remove red eye, this is what I get sometimes. : /
Lick - Wonderful, delectable ice cream in flavors you'd never think of putting together.  I enjoyed the goat cheese and thyme ice cream.

Amy's Ice Creams - My friend Melanie and I went here for an afternoon treat before getting mani/pedi's.  They had a chalk board with drawings of the worker's favorite concoctions.  We noticed there was one called "The Turtle" and we both ordered it-- chocolate, carmel and nuts.  SO YUMMY!!

County Line BBQ - Top-notch BBQ joint.  We hosted my sister's 30th birthday at the Austin location last summer.

Torchy's Tacos - "Damn good" is their motto and it's on point!  We also ordered a side of corn salad and it was AH-MAZING.  DOn't expect to get in and get out really quick. This place was packed with a line out the door when we went for lunch.  Apparently we were blocking the exit when we came in together.  It's a safety issue for the servers, so the manager immediately came over to us and asked us to follow him.  He had a table for two set up next to the bar and the bartender took our order.  We left bad, but then we didn't because we were starving.  It's obvious this chain is all about it's customers and we were two of the happiest customers that day.

Papadeaux - This is a chain restaurant, but it is a must when you visit San Antonio!  They have amazing seafood.  We went here with our friends who visited from Dallas, introduced it to my sister and brother-in-law and we took our friends Melanie and Nick, who are from Louisiana.  They all LOVED it!  I can't wait to go back when we visit Texas next summer.

Photo Credit: JennyPennyAho (iPhone)
Appetizer -- I don't recall the name of it but they were
lobster spring rolls with lettuce, slaw and dipping sauce.  So delectable!

I really hope you enjoyed this Great Eats Edition.  I enjoy writing these editions and sharing the photos. It's a way for me to travel down memory lane and share my life with you!  The next time you're in San Antonio, I'd love for your to visit one of these places and let me know your thoughts on the food!
Thanks for stopping by JennyPennyAho and stay tuned for Jenny's Best of San Antonio/Great Attractions Edition!