Friday favorite

only one favorite this week, because the one is just perfect. this literally just made my day, y’all. i have watched it like 8 times and kind of can’t get enough. messaging and execution, completely on point. i honestly don’t think this could have been cast, scripted, shot or edited any more perfectly. bravo, Lane Bryant and Laird + Partners!

have a great weekend, everyone!

Friday favorites: back in the saddle edition

cowgirl_on_white_horsei know it’s been a long time since i’ve shown my face around here. (thanks to everyone who’s hung around!) still a bit sorting through reasons why (maybe a post for later), but long story short, not writing these little posts is not helping me answer any of the questions i have been having about what i’m doing and why — here and in a couple other aspects of life. so i’m jumping back in. that’s the plan at least! and since i’m in, you know i gotta post my favorites from the week! this weekend, i’m looking forward to Spy returning home from a week in Germany. with everything going on in Europe right now, i just want him to get home safely! also, pool time, Secret Life of Pets (mandatory viewing!) and a wine tasting on Sunday afternoon. hope y’all have some fun/relaxing stuff planned, too! let’s go . . . Continue reading

TBT: fashion for anarchy

howtolookpunk

i never usually post anything anywhere for Throwback Thursday. i’m usually too lazy to dig something up. or if i see something perfect, i usually forget that i found it by the time it’s Thursday again. (there’s a constant pop-pop-popping in my head as the brain cells expire, these days.) but, when this came across my email (thanks, Digg) sometime in the past week or so, i threw those tired old brain cells the bird and promised myself to do something with it.

this here, my friends, is a 1977 handbook on How to Look Punk. it features none other than Belinda Carlisle (yes, that Belinda Carlisle) on the cover. it includes gems like “symbolize with saftey pins.” and, yes y’all, it is fabulous.

growing up in NoVa as an angsty teenager in the mid-late 1980s, this totally hits home. while i kind of spanned social circles as a highschooler, one of my main crews was the “alternative crowd,” which consisted of the punk and new wave kids. many of these guys were way into the DC hardcore scene, which was pretty epic at that time, birthing bands like Bad Brains and Minor Threat. i might have gone to a handful of shows, but the music wasn’t really my thing. and though i never sported (m)any of them myself, these looks were all around. for the kids i knew, it was way less contrived than putting together a look from a teen magazine. it was about the music and the scene and making art and rebelling against the man and . . . seriously, if you ever got caught dead doing anything but garishly mocking something like this, you’d forever be labeled a total poser.

this is total gold, y’all. i promise. do check it out. and God Save the Queen!

Friday favorites: best of 2015

happy 2016, y’all!! i’m tired. and not just because i stayed up too late on New Year’s Eve and drank too much! (i mean, maybe that’s about to happen. i’m writing this one early — for once — so i’ll have to let y’all know!) and not because i had a terrible year (i’m already seeing the Facebook posts about “good riddance to 2015!”).

no, we just had our normal post-holiday visit with our folks in the northern colonies . . . a 5-day jaunt to Richmond and DC to visit our parents and friends, which was fantastic, as always, but wow. just so much after the whole month or so of activities. with crazy weather, we arrived back in Atlanta around 10:00 Wednesday night. i had to show my face in the office for a bit on Thursday. and then finally, finally settled down to a little quiet with surf ‘n’ turf cooked (and being eaten on a rotating basis since we all are more in nosh mode than sit-down), 3 girls upstairs in the playroom watching the Seacrest New Year’s Eve show (better than 3 girls screaming in my kitchen! — i just made them promise to let me know when One Direction comes on!), the husband watching football in the livingroom and me in the office drinking wine, reflecting on the past and wondering about the future.

whoooooooshyogapantsfeelgoodrightnow . . .

so i know i haven’t posted in a long time. there has been a lot going on here. nothing totally bad. and nothing totally good. but enough life stuff to have kept me focused on other things and not writing regularly. i’m working on what fixing that looks like, as well as broader new year’s resolutions and such. in the meantime, before i can look forward, i wanted to spend this post looking back at some of my favorite moments of 2015 (in no particular order of course!). it really was a good year, as years go. hope y’all feel the same! and if not, as they are saying in Facebook memes, today is the first blank page of a 365-page book — write a good one!

France
colmar.001
i mean. there could not have been a more amazing vacation and week of togetherness for me and my family than our Spring Break in France. can’t wait for Hawaii 5-0 (neither can you! stay tuned . . .).

glamping!
yurtfamily_funnyfaces (1)
seriously, yurts-so-good was maybe the funnest weekend of the year. despite getting in uber trouble for joining the wiccans in their full moon ceremony (sheesh), this was an epic weekend with amazing friends who i hope we’ll keep forever. so. much. love.

Lily
IMG_4201
there have been a lot of ups and downs since she arrived on our scene last January. for example, ups: she is an amazing snuggler. downs: she eats everything . . . shoes, rugs, the house (literally) . . . somehow, the ups make up for the downs and just less than a year later, i cannot imagine life without her.

Parker
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no. my cat dying was not one of my favorite moments. i still miss him terribly. that last morning with him, when i knew it was not going to end well, we had a good snuggle and a good conversation. and in that last few hours, i know we solidified everything we’d meant to each other in the past 15 years. big, good stuff.

DC
hoya
Spy and i never actually lived in this amazing city at the same time. maybe crossed paths at The Tombs, we’ve decided, but that’s it. post-Christmas visit confirmed our love for all the in-town awesome. we really don’t get back there enough and visits always make me miss it. just maybe Miss Girl will go to Georgetown like her dad and we’ll just have to be up there like all the time . . .

Friday favorites: OMG it’s Christmas!

IMG_8649(photo: Bright Young Things)

. . . okay, well almost Christmas. my decorations are all up (finally!). the last big batch of cards goes out today. and we are on a plane to NYC in a couple of hours for a fun-filled weekend full of Christmas lights, Rockettes, ice skating and holiday cheer with some BFFs. my brilliant husband worked out this trip in like August pretty much for free. yeah, it’s good to have points and miles. Miss Girl was adorably excited to pack her own suitcase last night and i think actually did a pretty good job! now what on earth am i going to wear?? at any rate, here are a few fun finds from the week. enjoy and have a great weekend, everyone!

1. holiday stock from Chelsea at Bright Young Things

what a smart girl. just when i was looking to do a holiday theme on my Facebook page, there she was, offering some a free download of some really gorgeous photos that are perfect for social media headers, blog backgrounds, etc. (psssst! that’s one above, too!) she also does some great design work, so check out her services and blog if you are looking for beautiful. thanks again, Chelsea!

2. Santaland Diaries
santaland

bring the David Sedaris all day. for my birthday earlier this week, Spy took me to the Horizon Theater  to see this hilarious, crowd engaging rendition of a holiday tale about selling your soul. definitely go see it if you are in Atlanta!

3. Fast-Forward Girls 2015
another great #girlpower video from Goldiblox.

4. you’re beautiful.
i know. everyone’s been talking about these reactions to being called beautiful all week already, but here it is again. everybody can use 5 more minutes of this in their life.

5. your feet can be beautiful!
ampope
like i am hard on manicures, i’m also pretty hard on pedicures. i would like to blame running, but that would be an absolute joke. anyway, i was thrilled to be introduced to the Amopé “electronic foot file” that buffs up your feet without any sharp blades. this thing is seriously amazing. buh-by calluses. check it out.

4 reasons a girl should always buy herself a birthday present

birthdaybauble

so, yesterday was my birthday. yay! (?) i’m kind of past the point of being really excited — or depressed — about it. birthdays right now are another day, another milestone to look at what i’ve accomplished in the past year and a new start to decide what i want for the coming one. Spy and i had a sitter and had a super casual dinner (hello, apps and wine!) at Wrecking Bar before catching The Santaland Diaries, which is an adaptation of David Sedaris’ Holidays On Ice, which i loved reading. totally low-key and totally cool for a Wednesday non-milestone birthday. there were cards and a couple silly gifts Miss Girl was more than happy to unwrap for me. it was pretty perfect, as 44th birthdays go.

but night before last, my birthday present to me arrived. a couple weeks ago, when Kate Spade was doing Black Friday/Cyber Monday shenanigans, i was completely indecisive and <facepalm>missed the $175 deal on the $498 bag i really wanted</facepalm>. as a consolation, though, i somehow came across this absolutely charming little keychain (the back is engraved with SHE CRAVES ADVENTURE). it is probably the least expensive thing on katespade.com, even before any discounts. but it sang to me. i so love being a Sagittarian. i so crave adventure. and for many years i have been kind of obsessed with having a perfect keychain (i can’t explain). the stars aligned, as it were, and i knew this would be my special treat for myself for my birthday this year.

as i adored and Instagrammed it, i started thinking about why it was so precious. well . . . i pretty much always buy myself a birthday present. it could be small. it could be big. (it’s usually small.) a lot of times, it is something i’ve had my eye on but haven’t been able to justify the cost of. it’s usually something like a frivolous pair of shoes. the point is for it to be something only i would buy me that makes me giggle a little every time i see it for at least a few months. it’s something that’s just about me.

i think every girl should always buy herself a birthday gift (big or small) and have a moment of self-celebration on her birthday. and here’s why i think it’s so important:

1. you should celebrate how amazing you are.
every day. duh. but if you can’t celebrate how special you are on the day you were born, when the hell else can you do it? you are like nobody else on this planet. you have smarts and style and laughs and love . . . and so much more to offer. value yourself and treat you as well as you treat others. go out of your way to do something special just for you like you always do for everyone else!

2. you should be proud of your success.
when you can buy yourself a present — without worring about making rent or paying your cell phone bill, that is a mark of success. whether that means you’re at a Louboutin self-gifting level or an extra shot at Starbucks is a real splurge, make the time to have a minute with yourself and celebrate spending your own hard-earned money to buy something just for you to enjoy. nobody else is paying for it, which means nobody else can say a damn thing about whatever it is.

3. you should enjoy your independence.
feeding off of #2, buying yourself what you want on your own terms — without relying on your parents, your friends or your (wo)man — means you have power and can make decisions. the confidence you get from not having to wait for someone else to get you that thing or answer to anyone else about getting it yourself will make you realize you can do so much more in so many other areas of your life — without anyone else’s permission.

4. you should get what you really want.
no matter how many hints you throw, nobody is a mind reader. your best friend, your bae . . . only you are truly inside your head. so don’t be mad about people not getting you the exact right gift. did i want a Darth Vader Christmas tree ornament yesterday? not that much. that was just some 5 year old’s idea of what i wanted. you know what you want. go get it. then reread reasons 2 & 3 if you need a refresher on all the other benefits.

someone please tell me what wonderful birthday gifts you’ve gotten yourself!

5 on Friday: a(nother) Writing 101 mashup

turtlerace(photo: thrillist.com)

um. didn’t Writing 101 end like 6 weeks ago? you’re asking. i know, right? but here i am. still. did i ever tell y’all that i didn’t graduate college on time? yeah, somehow at the finish line, i still needed one more class and ended up hanging around Winter Park for the summer taking an Ann Tyler class to fulfill my very last couple credits and officially get my degree. so this feeling is super familiar.

that said, creative combinations seem to be my secret weapon here, so i’m doing it again! i didn’t have anything pulled together for Friday list of 5 when i remembered that Day 11 asked

What do you do when you’re not writing? How do you reset and return to this dashboard, refreshed? What do you need in your day-to-day life to maintain balance?

since my last post was a week and a half ago, this really resonated today. what have i been doing? why haven’t i been writing? that second question is probably a bit more complicated than “life got busy,” which is what i like to tell myself. i’ve been questioning again what i’m doing here. i’ve also been exploring a book idea and much of my focus has been on whether that idea is viable, how to make this space more fun for me — and for you — and kind of generally doing a gut check about my writing and what i want to do with it. deep, y’all. and i’m not ready to write about it yet. ha. Continue reading

counting on sweater weather! (a Writing 101 mashup)

sweater weather(image: ZC Textiles)

it won’t truly be sweater weather here in Atlanta for another month, at least. but a girl can dream over a pumpkin spice latté (or not — because you would never ever catch me drinking that shit). thank goodness, Jolineys over at Keeping Track included me in her so-very-fall-ish Sweater Weather Tag so i can get in the mood even if the temperature isn’t quite there yet! and since i still have outstanding Writing 101 assignments (gaaaaaahhhh.) i’m going to combine this post with Day 12, which was all about word count. if you usually write long, you’re supposed to write short and vice versa. since i usually ramble on and on, i’m going to answer all the questions in fewer than 100 words. and scroll to the bottom to check out the 10 awesome bloggers i’m tagging to play along!

favorite candle scent — classic/boring: vanilla

coffee, tea or hot chocolate? coffee (with real cream)

what is the best fall memory you have — Gold Cup

best fragrance for fall all year round: Acqua di Gio

favorite Thanksgiving food — Sourdough Stuffing with Pears & Sausage

most worn sweater —  oldest = most worn? close replica. (image: Alyssa’s Closet on Poshmark)

fisherman sweater

football games or jumping in leaf piles — football. duh. rise up!

favorite type of pie —  pecan. OMG.

what is autumn weather like where you live — gorgeous. 60s/70s. blue skies. crisp.

Downtown W - Atlanta

which makeup trend do you prefer: dark lips or winged liner — dark lips, definitely.

what song really gets you into the fall spirit — um . . . September?

is pumpkin spice worth the hype — see above. gross.

favorite fall TV show — It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!

skinny jeans or leggings? — skinnies. (and leggings are not pants!)

combat boots or Uggs — ugh. neither.

Halloween: yay or nay — oh, hell yes!

fall mornings or evenings — chilly mornings with a snuggly robe and coffee.

what do you think about Black Friday? — i’m a Cyber Monday girl.

one Fall 2015 trend you love — does head-to-toe black ever go out of style? (image: CollegeCandy)

head-to-toe black trend

count: 85 words. boom.

wanna play? (and don’t you worry your pretty little heads about the word count!)

  1. Martina @ A Splash of Mimosa
  2. Shauna Rae @ Rae of Sparkles
  3. Jen @ The Haute Mommy Handbook
  4. Jellyfish Mama @ Never Trust A Jellyfish
  5. lafriday @ Forced Bloom
  6. Rosema @ rosemawrites
  7. Melle @ Much Ado About Melle
  8. Wanda @ A Girl Named Wanda
  9. Sara @ Busy Mom Confessional
  10. You, if you wanna join in!

Writing 101: dear Lottery Gods . . .

lottery2

dear Lottery Gods,

we need to talk. i’m the truest of the true believers. a faithful participant in your rituals. a regular proselytizer, spreading your gospel. winning my fortune $1 at a time is just. not. cutting it. i want to know what more i need to do to receive the joy of your bounty.

i sure as hell know you can’t win if you don’t play. and every week, i buy my 5 tickets (sometimes twice.). i think the new numbers i’ve picked — family birthdays and anniversaries — are good numbers. they really reflect what’s important to me — the same things and people i want to preserve and protect with your blessings.  sometimes, i just leave it to chance with a quick pick. i leave it in your hands. most times, i recite a quick prayer, reminding you and myself that i will use the winnings for good. then i fantasize about quitting my job, wearing yoga pants all the time while never actually doing yoga, starting some as-yet-undetermined foundation that helps girls/women/the illiterate, then writing a book about it all, or about something completely different and totally fictional. because i have the time to do that.

yet, week after week, i see no reward for my faithfulness. $1 here. $2 there. surely, this must be leading to something bigger. surely, you must have a plan for me. and i can be patient — to a point. i mean, there isn’t a Lottery Afterlife. i’m very clear on the fact that the rewards of the faithful of this religion are reaped in this lifetime. so i have to ask when is my time?

obviously, this is not a need-based situation. i mean, rich guys never win, right?</sarcasm>

and obviously, other people have done a lot of stupid shit after they win.

and i definitely won’t be a colossal fuck-up like these people.

i couldn’t possibly be any less deserving of your miracles than those guys, right? and i swear, i really will do some good, helpful, charitable deeds with some of my jackpot. i’m guessing none of those guys  actually showed you a plan before you bestowed a windfall on them, did they?

so what gives, Lottery Gods?

there’s a drawing in less than 2 hours. i have my tickets. if you need more from me, just give me a quick little sign and i’m totally on it. then once and for all, let’s do this!

xoxo
your next multi-millionaire in waiting

Day 9 post for Writing 101: Today, write your post as a letter. getting caught up, y’all. (whew.) and looking forward to checking in on some of my classmates! happy Friday, everyone!

Writing 101: coffee talk

coffee & notebook

if we were having coffee right now, i’d tell you how excited i am to be the only one awake in the house. i’d tell you it’s my very favorite time of day — when things are quiet and clean. it’s one of my very few windows of me time, so it’s a really perfect time for us to be catching up.

if we were having coffee right now, i’d tell you i’ve got my notebook with me because i have a lot of writing to do this weekend and i might need to jot down some notes. i’d tell you about Writing 101 and that this post is the Day 10 assignment. today is actually Day 11 and i’m actually a few posts behind and skipping around, but having a lot of fun with it. in addition to getting caught up on all that (i think i have 3 more make-up posts?), i volunteered to write a proposal for finally getting seating and shade in the park behind our house. someone else already did the heavy lifting of getting all the estimates and i just need to write up something really brilliant to justify the cost of the project.

Billy Idolif we were having coffee right now, i’d ask if you’re loving this fall-ish weather we’re having right now with crisp mornings and gorgeous sun-shiny afternoons. and i’d tell you how glad i am that everyone here for Music Midtown lucked out with the weather. and speaking of Music Midtown, i’d mention that Spy ran into Billy Idol in the lobby of the St. Regis on Wednesday morning! how cool! (image: songkick)

if we were having coffee right now, i’d tell you how slack i have been about working out and that after running for the first time in a couple months last Sunday i was so sore i could barely move my legs until Thursday. i plan to get out there again this weekend, with (i hope) less bodily damage and really get back on track.lukeskywalker

if we were having coffee right now, i’d tell you all what Miss Girl wants to be for Halloween: Luke Skywalker. and i’d ask you if you thought that was weird or not. i’m torn, but mostly think it’s cool and wonder if i should be Princess Leia or a Storm Trooper (or maybe Darth Vader) to go with her. we’d also talk about how i can’t believe we need to buy some Halloween decorations when we go to Target later today because everything gets sold out so quickly and i don’t want to find myself SOL in October like i did last year.

if we were having coffee right now, i’d tell you how excited i am to watch football on Sunday and how nervous i am about the Falcons’ first season with their new coach. i’d tell you i’m counting the days until we head to the Dome for the game against the Redskins, which is always my favorite match-up since i grew up as a Redskins fan.

if we were having coffee right now, i’d apologize for cutting it short, but tell you that the family is awake and i need to get ready to go out for breakfast because i absolutely don’t feel like cooking this morning. i’d ask if we could do it again sometime and promise that next time, we’ll talk more about you!

have a great weekend, everyone!