Woman vs Wild Home Repair Update

Well, I bitched my way through the entire year (2017) with endless contractors coming and going, and yet the same pool and hardwood floor projects never did get fixed.  Short of standing in my driveway with a t-shirt cannon and my cash, only a drunken trip to Vegas could have wasted more money.

Did I mention that we are now on our seventh pool company? Yes? Well, sorry, but you’ve got to admit… SEVEN????  Each one dogging the last and each one peering into the swamp of doom and declaring somewhere around a $500 fix.  Several left running with their rubber hoses between their legs and didn’t even have the balls to jackhammer up the cement pool deck like their other chlorine cousins.   One company charged us over $400 to just point at the problem and put blue painter’s tape in an arrow… I’m assuming this was to let other pool sharks know where I kept my checkbook.  This latest company seems to know what they are doing, however, the bill has already soared to over $3000.  I’ll keep you posted.

We are also on our 4th hardwood floor in the same room in just one year.  Yes, I know you have heard this story too.  Again apologies… just trying to bring my new readers up to speed.  Just imagine moving your furniture into a POD every couple of months, taking all of your paintings off the walls, and living for a week or more in your bedroom with a Sheep dog, a Sheltie and various other menageries… only to find out that they screwed it up again and we will be waiting until the planets align to give it another go…  Now they are stating that they never put a floor into a house that doesn’t have a vapor barrier.  I guess that’s a new rule, since these are the same people who put the last two floors in.

Me: “I thought I had a vapor barrier?  I paid Onyx Interiors for one, and didn’t you say you were concerned about the barrier being messed up by our cats????

Them: “Lady, I look under a lot of houses.  I guess I made a mistake.

Me:  Considering how many times you have F*CKED up my house, wouldn’t you pay more attention?”

Them: “I don’t have to listen to this.”  Click.

I’m just saying… it’s a good thing that this conversation wasn’t in person.

So here is the “Woman vs Wild” Home Improvement Update:

Last Sunday as I was putting away my winter clothes (Ok, I was premature about that) I went into an obscure closet in our office.  It is a very old house with closets like Narnia and  clothes rods longer than any firehouse I’ve ever seen.  The roof pitches like an “A” frame which makes it great for shoving shit in there that you never want to see again.  However, on this trip I noticed a white shirt that now looked tie-dyed… WTH… it was wet and hanging next to a red jacket (also wet)  The F*CKING ROOF IS LEAKING!  I couldn’t believe it!  This is in a totally different section than the last leak (that caused all the problems with the hardwood floor), and may I remind all of my readers that our metal roof is only a few years old.

I spent all of Sunday hauling weird clothes to the spare bedroom floor (yes the one I just beautifully painted and decorated).  We called a repair company, but in almost a week’s time, they have not called back.

So with buckets in hand and the most rain I have seen in many years, I sat on the floor and just tried to figure out what in the world to do.

Money Pit: 10,000  Deb: 0


27 Week Challenge

Over the holidays my transformation progress really slowed.  Although I didn’t gain any weight, my motivation was elsewhere and I was just trying to get all of the festivities under control at home and at work.  (I am an event and programs director).  When the last of the  Christmas boxes went up into the attic (ok, ok.. there are still a few at the top of the stairs….)  I started looking around wondering what the hell happened to my year of change.

March 2017 started my journey, and although I had come at it with a long list of things I wanted to work on, I realized that there must have been an awful lot of “back-peddling” to achieve so very little.  My pool is still a swamp, my hardwood is still in a pile in the middle of the Dining room, I only lost 50 pounds not 100 pounds, I still had the same job, same routine,  no new adventures, epiphanies or triumphs.  WTH???

Although the journey was supposed to be an overall transformation involving my whole self, I decided to narrow it down a little and concentrate on my physical appearance, hoping to achieve at least ONE part of my list.   I had actually lost 50 pounds, which isn’t chump change, but somehow, I was still wearing most of the same clothes and I looked exactly the same.. just smaller.  I would go so far as to say that I looked worse.  Now, everything that used to be fat, was smooshy.  I wasn’t even CLOSE to what I thought 50 pounds lost would look like.  I HATE those commercials when women say they lost 15 pounds and 3 dress sizes… Good grief.  I guess there was a lot of exercise in my future.

So, while I was thumbing through FB, I saw an ad for a 27 week physical challenge.  Why is it 27 weeks?  I have no idea.  The ad said that it involved kickboxing among other things, and it was at a Jujitsu Studio.  There is nothing I like to do more than kick and punch things.. so  this was right up my alley. The class was local, inexpensive and didn’t involve a bathing suit.   I was a little nervous about being the oldest battleship in the fleet, but I signed up anyway.  The only real thing I was worried about was whether or not I had TIME to do this.  I have crazy work hours, a farm, a family and a lot of time spent commuting…. it was going to be rough.

I am happy to report that this old gal has been hanging in for five weeks now, going to class 3 times a week, and 2 times a week to the gym for weight lifting and walking the track.  Do I feel better?  Hell no!  Every single day I have a new ache or pain, but my commitment remains solid.  The fear of failing at my transformation is greater than the pain in the ass of the break-neck schedule.  Sooner or later, something is bound to happen.

I knew there would be issues.. there always is.  I swear everything else in my life has spiraled out of control, mainly due to me spending so much time exercising.  Dinner has not been regular, and the house looks worse than ever.  My workmates jaws drop as I run out the door at the stroke of 5 wearing my workout clothes.  No longer are the days that I stay after work to finish a project or stop by the store on the way home to get that special something to go with dinner… Sorry gang, but  ya can’t have it both ways.

After the 27 weeks, I will slow my roll and try to create a utopia where I have time for everything…   yeah right, but for now I’m living out of the Mini Cooper with boxing gloves in the backseat right along with my cocktail hour attire and rubber boots.

My year’s transformation has been nothing like I thought it would be.  It was so much harder than I had planned and although I will not reach my goals by March, I will keep the list where it has been all year and cross them off one by one as I smash my way to the finish line!

Happy “Red Shoe” Life New Year

Happy New Year 2018

Although I tried my best to accomplish my Red Shoe Life bucket list in 2017, I found that the more I completed, the longer the list got.  If you read my last post, you know that the “Woman vs Wild” home improvement status got stuck in the muck and though time, money and sweat got used… two of the biggest projects remain undone.  Many thanks to jack-wagon  contractors for that gift, but funny how things turn out.  For example, while meeting my son’s lovely lady Krista’s family for the first time this holiday, they mentioned that their local relation’s business is repairing “old” pools. I nearly stroked out when I heard those magical words.  I have literally used SIX pool companies this year and given each one a chunk-o-change.  There is hope for the black lagoon after-all.  With at least a bit of hope in that department, and our fourth hardwood floor being installed on January 17th..(yes, four floors in the same room in one year) I feel that those two projects may finally wrap up.  What next you ask??  Since I’m not a happy chick when I’m cold, the projects will stay inside for a few months.  Santa did bring cattle panels for the fence, but for now I see painting in my future.

I am happy to say that I successfully did some entertaining this season.  I haven’t had company in years and it had gotten to be quite a phobia.  I managed to keep my hysteria in my head,  instead of flying out of my mouth and didn’t even freak out when moments before the arrival of some new friends for a holiday tea, a jar of coconut oil hit the kitchen floor… SHINIEST FLOORS EVER!!!  Part of my Red Shoe Life is to enjoy my friends more, and since I had been living in what looked like a crack house, I was pretty darn happy to present my new guest bedroom and redecorated bathroom to New Year’s Eve company without batting an eye.  Thank you all for coaching me through that process!

2018 will see the second half of my transformation and I feel this will be the hardest part.  Losing 50 more pounds this year will be the biggest priority… lots of exercise time.  (Thanks, Brandon & Bri for my new weight lifting gloves!)  Feverishly finishing my book and working on 3 separate eBooks is a close second for my time and, of course, my quest to be more engaged with my family and friends.  There are many other rods in the fire, but they are more of a “to do” list, not really transformation material, but I am sure things will get added on a regular basis!

It feels good to be back at the Blog, so buckle up!  This year’s ride is not going to be pretty, but I’m going to put on my Red Shoe Butt Kickers and run for the finish line… right up the middle

!Happy New Year Red Shoe Life 2018



Finishing the Year Strong


It truly has been a long time since I posted to my Red Shoe Life Transformation Blog.  It  wasn’t because I didn’t have stuff to chat about, it was in fact because things just haven’t been very Red Shoe lately.  I really felt it wouldn’t be right to post about being all positive and motivational, when I was going around wanting to punch out most everybody.  I hate it when things don’t go my way and I was sure you guys didn’t want to hear about it.  It wasn’t until lately when someone asked me why they hadn’t seen my Blog, and I started telling them that I was feeling like such a shit.  They said “Deb!  People want to know that you are REAL, and you need to show them how to deal with the REAL crap!”  Well…  here it is.

Guys, shit happens and then you die. I have been in a perpetual holding pattern on so many of my projects that I was certain I could accomplish, that I started to get really frustrated.  I am amazed how hard I have to fight to just do the simplest thing, when it seems effortless for others.  After my huge pity-party, I decided to push ahead and finish what I started.

Sure, I could continue to be a big cry baby, and start to sue contractors left and right, fight with unprofessional pool people and unbelievably untalented hardwood floor installers, but I would rather just suck it up buttercup.  They know who you are, and I feel sorry for them.

Despite the house BS,  I have had a pretty good start to my transformation.  There is no tellin’ what I could have accomplished if all of my furniture wasn’t in a POD, or I could use my front door.  Yeah, they may have taken my money, wasted untold vacation days and hurt my health by causing me stress and not being able to do rehab in my pool, but in order for me to truly be a new person, I have to think about divine intervention.  There are all kinds of people that we will meet in our lives and it is not our responsibility to make them “do the right thing”   I know that karma is a bitch and with or without me…. they will get what they deserve, so let’s move on 🙂

As you can see by my photos, I’ve been kicking ass with my KETO diet.  I am approximately half way through with my weight loss journey at 50 pounds down, and have now started exercising (yuk).  Now that I am blogging again, I will post about upcoming challenges and changes in the KETO menus and intermittent fasting.

I know my work team will laugh when I tell you what happened yesterday ….  I was dancing around while waiting for the elevator, and in one embarrassing swoop, my slip fell right off.  I have seen this on funniest videos… and I can tell you.. it is truly hilarious!  Fifty pounds can do funny things to your wardrobe and I have had to buy a few temporary things to wear to work.. apparently, a new slip is in order.  Glad it wasn’t my skirt. Haha!

I hope you have enjoyed reading the blog this year, and will continue following me as I plug along through the rest of my journey.  You’ve got a few days left to cross off as many things as you can on your 2017 “to do” list.  Go for it!  Dust off your Red Shoes and finish the year strong!


Woman vs Wild


Although I was home for a week and wanted to work on my projects,  my toe surgery was still an issue, so climbing ladders or moving heavy crap was not on my radar.  I DUD have the place looking rather spiffy with every nook and cranny decorated for fall, but I wanted the house to look extra good because I was actually getting ready to have COMPANY.   This was the first time in a very long time to fuss around and I was having a ball.  My sister-in-law and brother-in-law were visiting from Vermont, and we were planning BIG FUN!

As usual, however, it was a major clean up to get ready and there were a few things that didn’t get finished.  I was kinda bummed that it wasn’t perfect, but I had to remember my own advice and try not to sweat the small stuff.

The good news is, my sister-in-law is a wild woman too and the home renovation project got a little shot in the arm when she demanded a power drill and climbed up on top of a conglomeration of chairs and stools to reach the top of the sun room. She is a tiny little woman, so this was quite a feat!   I dug screws and various items from the deepest scary parts of my garage, and I held the damn rack while she drove it home!

I now have my beautiful wrought iron rack proudly displayed over the windows where I can see it from the kitchen and my metal wall art that looks like a quilt, positioned over an old bench on the porch (don’t even ask how she did that!)

Thank you, Faith, for being YOU, and helping out in my “Woman vs. Wild” Home Improvement project!  You Rock!


Keeping Keto

As the days of Fall Break speed by, we had one last chance for a sunny day lunch excursion.  It seems like I have been doing nothing but eating this entire week, but when I hopped onto the scale this morning, I was actually down 2 pounds.  Go me!  So with a positive attitude, we headed south into Mississippi.  It was a toss up between Holly Springs and Olive Branch, and as I had heard so much about O.B., the Mini Cooper led the way.  I was so excited to find this quaint and beautifully coiffed old-fashioned Town Square, chock full of antique stores, one-of-a-kind cafes and all sorts of artsy shoppes.  It was so hard to choose where to eat, and as we only had a short window of time, we flipped a coin and headed towards an eclectic little coffee house.  I would imagine that parking could be a challenge during peak times, but as luck would have it, the mighty Mini squeezed right in!  Pink’s Coffee House was not hard to find with it’s hot pink door  completely decorated with irresistible Halloween cuteness.   I just had to check it out.


Pink’s did not disappoint. The place smelled like heaven and there was so much cool stuff to look at, it took a minute to figure out what the hell was happening!  The front room with it’s mismatched cafe tables and chairs had piles board games and there was artwork from local artists, funky statues, and signs about everything covering the walls. There was even a pile of stuffed fish net stocking LEGS, with leopard print shoes hanging out of a basket.  No sure what that was all about, but sooo whimsical!


Along with the books and board games, each table had a large empty can with a roll of paper towel stuck in it and a pair of stripped witch legs showing off high heeled Red Shoes.  I knew I was in the right place!


The menu was vast covering all kinds of breakfast goodies as well as sandwiches galore!  I started looking for my Keto selection, but didn’t have to look far.  This restaurant was all about it’s low carb customers and was ready with some amazing menu items.

First on the list was some scrumptious looking crust-less quiches.  I saw broccoli, mushrooms, bacon etc..  FABULOUS!!  I also snapped a pic of the quiches WITH crusts, just so you could compare how good it all looked!

FullSizeRender (14).jpgWithout crust

FullSizeRender (13).jpg With crust

I finally decided on egg salad with olives (which should have been called Egg & Olive Branch, haha!).  It was served on a couple of lettuce leaves with a homemade pickle.  I LOVE  olives, so this was a big treat.  I hadn’t had that combination in years.  Wow!


There was also pimento cheese, spicy and non-spicy, tuna and chicken salad and some mighty BLT’s to name a few, but here is the BEST part!  You can have your “sandwich” ingredients served on bread of all kinds, croissants, rolls etc..  but for Keto lovers, you could have it all served on a salad…

OR on two giant rounds of crispy bacon that serve as the “bread” that holds it all together.

Holy Crap!!!

I recommend this Coffee House with a Red Shoe Life thumbs up!  Thanks, Pink,  for keeping it Keto!

Be sure to look for an extensive interview with Pink and her other Keto recipes in my upcoming eBook full of dining-out options!  In the meantime, check out her extensive coffee and tea offerings and enjoy it in their outdoor seating area.  She has it all!






Fiesta Time


Delicioso!  Checkout this Keto friendly lunch spot we found while chillin’ with my visiting fam.   We rolled into a food truck wagon train after showing off the various tourist attractions in my fair city of Memphis.  I was a little anxious about what I would scrape off of what to keep Keto, but no worries Amigo!  The Chile Verde vendor had a low carb version for most of their mucho menu, so my biggest problemo was to figure out which one I would order!

I was really happy with my choice of the Chorizo “taco” served in a lettuce wrap, and as you can see from the photo, it came with wedges of limes and radishes.  There was also a great selection of different types of salsas.  They had everything from Habanero to sweet pineapple, which I hear is great on the Carnitas, but I stick with the traditional tomato salsa or the tomatillo.

IMG_9899.jpg   IMG_9897.jpg

What an awesome lunch.  The Keto diet is really so easy once you get the hang of it.  There is always a low carb option, so never fear about trying new restaurants.  If you’re still wondering what to order when you are out, be sure to look for my upcoming eBooks where I visit Southern restaurants, ethnic restaurants and other surprising places where you can enjoy yourself, but keep the Keto lifestyle!

Fiesta Time!