Adventure of Elf Downtown


Hello Loves,


This particular adventure is the first of its kind in Knoxville and Lordy am I excited! First of all, whoever came up with this idea deserves major kudos.


Starting November 25, over 20 downtown Knoxville locations with have an Elf-on-the-Shelf hidden somewhere on the premises of their respective businesses for you to find. The very first thing you will need to do is get your passport to receive your elf stamps; go to the Mast General Store at 402 S Gay Street for your passport and all your Elf-on-the-Shelf needs. You will also return your stamped passport to the Mast General Store once you have received all your stamps. I intend to try and find them all in a single day of shopping madness. I’ll keep you updated on my own adventure.


Once you get 20 stamps or more in your passport book, you can turn them into the Mast General Store to become eligible for the Grand Prize and there are many smaller prizes along the way. The event ends on December 24. For all the locations, visit or you can stop in and at Visit Knoxville.

Continue reading “Adventure of Elf Downtown”

Fantasy of Trees Gala


Hello Loves,

And a Merry Christmas Season to you all! My own Christmas holiday always starts with the Fantasy of Trees Gala, a must-see event. The gala is always the night before the official opening of the Fantasy of Trees. The attire is a little less casual than one’s usual church dress and I suppose it could be a family-friendly date night, although I prefer to go with just my husband. The gala previews the trees before anyone else sees them and you can be the first to bid on them. The gingerbread houses are ready to be purchased, but they must remain where they are until the event is done.

This is just one of the best events in Knoxville and conjures the magic if the season for young and old alike. There’s plenty of food available, as well as a cash bar where one can indulge in your favorite ciders. I always make the time to take my little elf back for the Fantasy of Trees, as he enjoys it almost as much as I do. If you intend to take your own child/children, dress in layers and take cash for the kids’ events. I find it gets hot with all those wonderful people around and I tend to go first thing just when the doors open.

Have fun!

Another Great Concert


Hello Loves,

So after a Thanksgiving full of the usual turkey and sweets, this go-to girl not surprisingly found herself at the gym to work off all the gravy. While doing some necessary cardio, I heard a voice I hear every time I get into my car. It was ERIC BAKER! Readers of this blog will recognize Eric’s name and I did the 100-yard dash in two seconds flat to introduce myself. My heart soared when he knew who I was, as well as all about this blog. I almost needed smelling salts. I only managed to stay conscious due to the fact I got the scoop on his upcoming concert on February 18, 2017 at the Bijou Theatre.

This is a completely different show from the Rock and Kettle Show Eric did a few weeks ago. This show will be more intimate, fewer backup singers, a sort of hold the hand of the one you love and dream away kind of show. Eric will perform those you-broke-my-heart songs, as well as post breakup moving on songs. I imagine there’ll also be more than a couple of hit-the-road songs, too. All of which will be appropriate for Valentines’ Day.

Now I KNOW more than a few of you reading this are thinking, “Now, McCalla, stop being a groupie”, but I can’t. Eric Baker is just fantastic and we ought to support our own local artists, especially one as talented as Eric is. I’m not getting free tickets and like everybody else, I’ll be paying for my own tickets. So, get yourself busy and get your tickets at as soon as possible. Last year, the tickets sold out in less than two weeks, so you had better not procrastinate. I’ll see you there and let me know in the comments below if we can meet and greet before the concert!



Hello, Loves




I hope you take the time today to think of the blessings you have in your life, whether it be a comfortable home or apartment, spending time with your family and friends, or special someone. If we think about it, most of us have so many things to be thankful for; if you woke up today, you can start there.


Here are some local restaurants that are open for Thanksgiving. Remember to be generous to the people serving you, for they are giving up their Thanksgiving to make yours special.

Be Blessed!

Continue reading “Give THANKS”


Hello Loves,

Who doesn’t just LOVE donuts? There is an amazing donut place just this side of Heaven, right here in Knoxville. Despite being in the gym 6 days a week, donuts are my weakness. Growing up, I spent my summers in a little city in Alabama called Oneonta where my granny’s brother owned a bakery. I can still smell the donuts and homemade baked goods. The big cake donuts were and remained my favorite . . . until this past Saturday. My family and I took a short trip to Maker’s Donuts off Broadway on Tyson Road.


The shop is located on the corner, so if you are in a hurry you might miss it that would be simply tragic. The donuts are made from scratch with staff coming in every morning at 4 a.m. so the rest of us can enjoy the fare and my Lord, is it worth it. Each week sees a succession of new donuts, so there’s always a good reason to come back. You can see what the specials are every week by visiting the website


When my family and I visited Maker’s had Toasted Coconut Cream Pie, Vanilla Bean glazed, Maple Bacon, Chocolate Ganache and a host of others. We tried three; Cotton Candy, Churro, and Funnel Cake. They were just divine and worth every calorie. Each was different in it’s own way and will have you wanting a glass of milk to go with every donut.


Maker’s is a small shop with perhaps 8 seats inside and 4 tables outside. The hours are Thursday – Sunday from 7:00 a.m. until midnight. Go get yourself a donut!

Christmas at the Expo


Hello Loves,


Christmas is right around the corner and being the girl-about-town that I am, I popped into the Christmas Shopping event at the Expo Center this weekend. WOW! This is a must event for those of you with hard to shop for friends and family members.


There were over 400 vendors and I found perhaps 10 of them who lived in Knoxville. Clearly this sort of event is good for our local economy. Those vendors are likely staying in local hotels and motels, eating, etc.


Five bucks got me in the doors and soon I was skipping through the aisles and was surprised to see the variety offered to buyers. There was everything from handmade quilts to boutique items. The Christmas décor was enough to stock the entire Hallmark Channel for the holiday season. One gentleman made nightlights from glass beer bottles, a gift for the man who has everything.


GO EARLY if you are going to go because even with the football game it was positively packed. Also, take something called cash; your debit card isn’t going to buy you anything as every vendor I saw only accepted cash and checks.


Pack a snack for the kiddies or leave them at home and shop ‘til you drop!

Larry Off and Running…..


Former Knox County Commissioner R. Larry Smith announced as of 10:00 a.m. today he will be a candidate for Commissioner-At-Large in 2018. At least one of the two sitting Commissioners-At-Large, Bob Thomas, has announced he is running for Knox County Mayor, meaning he will give up his seat to run for higher office. Smith will be running and so far, he’s the only announced candidate. Smith says he intends to raise a pile of money, $100,000 to fund his campaign.


R. Larry Smith is a veteran campaigner and will be an interesting candidate.