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November, 2009

  1. The last bit of my 11/14 Last Chance finds

    November 29, 2009 by SavvyInTheCity

    I am back on the interwebs! Pardon the interruption; the hubs and I have spent the last few days packing, moving and unpacking (our house sold — and we’ve relocated into an apartment). 
    “A Life Fulfilled: Atlanta” will literally be “Atlanta” for a little while, as the apartment is in the Virginia-Highlands. The plan is to spend the next few months saving and house hunting — then we’ll hopefully be back in Decatur in a jiffy.
    Here’s the last of what I found at Last Chance (Decatur) two weekends ago. Given it’s nautical pattern (that’s a black and white stripe), gold buckled belt and shoulder pads, I thought this Danny and Nicole dress would be a fun one to take home with me.

    The details.
    It’s sad to see the yard that no longer belongs to us!
    And an antiqued-looking shot for fun.

    Dress: Danny and Nicole ($10 at Last Chance in Decatur)
    Necklace: made at the Bead Shoppe in Avondale Estates (just a multi-shaped chain I made into a necklace) – $14
    Shoes: Nine West platform pumps (via Ross) – $25

  2. Pre-Thanksgiving Crazy Boot Wednesday

    November 25, 2009 by SavvyInTheCity

    It may feel like a Friday… but it's still a (Crazy Boot) Wednesday… Thanks to the office ladies who participated in the fun. We were double up on participation last week.

    (The boots third in from the right belong to my company's owner/CEO)
    Sorry, AJ. Didn't mean to block your awesome wedge boots!
    And e-mailing in from Tifton, Georgia, is a little man named Will. Check out Will and his super rad, super tough cowboy boots:




  3. Pho Dai Loi 2: Vietnamese Comfort Food

    November 24, 2009 by SavvyInTheCity

    Last weekend, I was feeling bleh and my usually chipper girlfriend Megan was feeling a little under the weather. We decided some comfort food was in order, but not the Cracker Barrel or Boston Market variety. 

    We were thinking a visit to Buford Highway was just what the doctor ordered.

    Based on a comment from Eat Buford Highway, we headed over to Pho Dai Loi 2 (near the intersection of Clairmont Road and Buford Highway). This little gem was abuzz with activity despite our later lunch arrival time. A host directed us to a table, pushed menus in our hands and asked us what we wanted to drink. Tea for me, please.

    The scene: Pho Dai Loi 2 on Buford Highway

    We ordered (shrimp) spring rolls to start. We spent the next few minutes checking out the scene. The patrons of this cafeteria-esque restaurant ranged from families and solitary veterans to college kids and what looked to be a pickup soccer team. And I don’t know what this observation means exactly, but I saw more designer purses in that one-hour time frame than I did in Lenox Mall the week before. Hmmm. Interesting.

    The spring rolls weren’t much unlike those from my C’om experience in the recent weeks past, with the exception of these being more heavy on the lettuce. I could eat the dark brown peanut sauce on shoe leather (mmm… I think it’s that good) but Megan felt overall “meh” about the flavor of the sauce. (I realize “meh” isn’t a very technical term, so let’s just pretend it basically equals “take it over leave it” or “so so.”) The rolls weren’t super special to me (and I couldn’t taste the shrimp that well), but the price was noteworthy: a super minimal $2.95 for two large, fresh rolls.

    Megan and I both knew what we came for entree-wise: the pho (pronounced “fah”). Not knowing which of the traditional, brothy, noodly creations would be most satisfying, I asked the waiter for his recommendation. He suggested the pho tai nam (#9 on the menu) because it came with both flank and round steak. I went for the medium-sized portion ($5.95). All of this talking about noodles, steak and broth got Megan thinking that the pho tai nam would be a good choice for her as well.

    Our soup entrees came out of the kitchen almost immediately. I’ll have to be honest in saying that I was rather overwhelmed at first; I expected bursts of spices and meaty flavors but mostly got a chicken brothy flavor, even after I added some of the garnishes served on the side (sprouts, lime, Thai basil, etc. — I held off on the jalapenos). 

    Can you see that the thinly sliced beef is still just a little rare? It’s cooking a little more in the hot broth (thank you, Megan, for pointing this out).

    That’s when my yapping did me a favor (you see, I’m quite the talker, even when I should be eating).

    Like a nice tea, the longer the hearty rice noodles steeped in the lime juice, basil and other accoutrements, the better it tasted and the more infused the flavors became. Mmmmm. And the aroma that accompanied also felt comforting. The whole experience reminded me of eating a fresh bowl of chicken noodle soup, but of the Vietnamese variety. 

    Megan and I agreed on the meat though. We preferred the the slightly tougher flank steak to the chewier, fattier round. Next time, I’ll order just the round.

    My lovely dining companion… Miz Megan.

    The verdict: you hit up a pho spot (like Pho Dai Loi) not so much for the flavor but for the comfort and the warmth — and you can’t beat the price. The popularity of this place also shows its strength as a Vietnamese staple on BuHi.

    Pho Dai Loi 2
    4186 Buford Hwy NE
    AtlantaGA 30345

    (404) 633-2111
    Yelp site:

  4. Savvy Shopping Tip: Stamps

    November 23, 2009 by SavvyInTheCity

    Ever realize you’re out of stamps — then remember that you would rather stab yourself with a sharp pencil than wait in line at the post office during your lunch break?

    Well, then I think you Atlantans (and others in the southeast) will appreciate this tip: You can buy books of stamps at QuikTrip with no markup in price. That’s right… QT keeps books of stamps in its registers for lazy patrons just like you and me. Pump that gas — and just as speedily as you can grab a 49-cent fountain drink, you can snag a book of stamps.

    The more you know…

  5. Audience Participation Friday – a.k.a. Fierce Shoe Friday

    November 20, 2009 by SavvyInTheCity

    Thanks to everyone who e-mailed me photos of their fierce shoes (or brought them into work for me to photograph) for Audience Participation Friday. I asked, “What’s the most fierce pair of shoes you own?”

    For some of these shoe obsesesed and foot fashion mavens, it was tough to pick just one pair.

    A Life Fulfilled Atlanta’s choices from her closet (why am I writing in third person?):

    I do love these patent leather black Nine West heels I snagged at Ross. They’re a good balance of feminine and edgy. (Sorry for not having a better picture of the shoes themselves!)
    These are one of my faves for now. I picked up these bad babies (BCBG Girls “Dania”) at the Junior League of Atlanta Belk shopping event. Their relatively conservative shape is offset by the purple and the suede look. Yum!
    From Kat in D.C.:
    “#1 – They are Steve Madden knockoffs of these fabulous Alexander McQueen booties. I bought them on preorder online and thank god I did because mcqueen is now suing and you can’t find them! The best part is that the sides unsnap and you can zip up the shoe into a full ankle boot! They’re insanely comfortable and everyone always comments on how great they are.”
    “#2 – I stumbled across these in the clearance section of DSW while waiting for a table at the Cheesecake Factory — and they just happened to be my size! One buckle was broken and now the second one is too, but it doesn’t keep from wearing them anyway. At the time, they were my highest heels, topping out at 5 inches! One night we were out and I noticed a couple staring at me nonstop, and I started getting self-conscious. Finally they called me over to let me know they were just admiring my fabulous shoes!”

    “#3 – THESE are now the highest heel in my closet. They are bebe knockoffs of the insanely expensive YSL tribute pump. They have been impossible to find in black so as soon as bebe restocked, I jumped on them. Thanks to their 2-inch platform they dont feel like 6 inches, but they def make me a giant! I added an additional photo for this one so that you can see how crazy the heel really is.”

    From Mb in D.C.:
    “My manolos!! Big surprise that these are my faves. NOT. For a steal at $120 at the secondhand shop, Mercedes Bien [in Adams Morgan], I just couldn’t say no. They get so much use whether at work or play. And the comfort is worth every penny. Even at retail value.”

    Maria of Atlanta (long-time friend and now colleague):

    Maria’s peep-toe Steven by Steve Madden pumps are the perfect shoe for jeans and a white tee, a black evening dress or anything in between.

    Our colleague Scott tried to participate (let me reiterate the word “tried”):

    Kathryn of Atlanta (colleague):
    Kathryn brought in her Christian Louboutins today for “Fierce Shoe Friday.” Holy moly. This is the closest I’ve ever been to the uuber sexy luxury French designer shoes. Hot stuff!
    Christian Lacroix pumps with a killer holographic-looking dye job. Whoa.
    AJ of Atlanta (colleague):

    These BCBG Girls gladiator-style shoes have an extra level of ferociousness with the zipper up the back.

    Thanks, ladies! I’m going to post a little poll about this post… who’s feet are the most fierce?
    I need to think about a theme for the next Audience Participation Friday. Any suggetions?