Friday, May 22, 2015

Happy Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day weekend friends!  I hope you are doing something fun or relaxing this weekend.  We're staying put and have visitors coming to us!  My parents are coming down tomorrow and then our good friends from Atlanta are coming with their kiddos on Sunday for the afternoon and spending the night.

One of the surprising side effects of moving has been spending more quality time with our friends from Atlanta.  Instead of an hour visit here and there, when we get together it's usually for a whole day and often over night.  It is sweet time together and I cherish it more than I did when we lived in the same town.

The husband and I are going appliance shopping tomorrow to hopefully kick start this kitchen renovation.  And we may do some cabinet shopping as well.  I'm not sure if we should go with a big box store for cabinets (i.e. Home Depot or Lowes) or if we should use a local guy.  I guess we need to check out both and compare prices and quality.

We may even join a pool this weekend.  It is already H.O.T. in Macon, so I think having access to a pool is going to be necessary for the summer.  I wish we had a beach trip down to 30A on the calendar this summer but so far it doesn't look like that will happen.  Maybe we can get in a late summer weekend visit.

Enjoy your weekend!  And thanks to all the veterans and especially those who have died serving our country.  My daddy was a Green Beret in the Army and my granddaddy was a Colonel in the Army.  My neighbor here in Macon was in the Marines and is currently in the reserves - and she is inspiring!  I had drinks with her and her friends a few weeks ago and I'm in awe of women in the service.  Thanks to all who have served or who serve to make our country a great place to live.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Blog On

I don't usually give much thought to these blog posts before writing them. They just sort of happen. And most of the time I have no idea if anyone is reading. Or if whoever is reading is finding something helpful in my words. I write for me. It's cathartic to get it out on paper. Whatever the current "it" may be in my life.  But this week I've had three different people tell me they enjoy my posts and the honesty in them.  I love hearing this. I love knowing my lack of filter is good in some people's minds.

I hate when I can't write about things going on in my life.  Work is the main one. I really wish I could put it all out there and then maybe I'd be in a better state of mind about the whole thing. Because truth be told, I'm in a lawyering funk right now.  Some might argue I've been in a lawyering funk since September of 2007 when I first started practicing.  But this feels different. This feels deeper. And I'm having a hard time digging out from the funk. I simply don't enjoy it right now. I don't know why that is and shouldn't get in to the various factors in a public forum.  But being in a work funk is hard because it tends to permeate into the rest of your life and I am trying to prevent that from happening. I think I'm doing a decent job, but perhaps you should ask my husband.

He on the other hand, loves his job. Thank goodness.

Lukas and Julian are almost done with school for the summer and since I'm working full time they won't be with me.  They'll be with their nanny for a full week, morning camp for three weeks and then with our nanny those afternoons.  Then they'll be with her again for a week and their last week of summer we're going on vacation.  I wish I could spend the summer with them. This working mom thing hits me at the strangest times. Some days I'm content with the setup and then others I'm depressed that I'm not their primary caregiver during the day. Today I'm sitting in the latter camp. At least I get off work at 4:30 and spend more time in the afternoons with them now than I did when we were in Atlanta.

And in totally unrelated news, my panic attacks have stopped. At least for the moment.  I've stopped drinking after realizing most of my attacks occurred after I've had one drink (or more). I'm not sure they're related, but for the time being I'm experimenting with a lack of drinking alcohol. So far it seems to be working, which is both great and annoying. I like my wine, always have and always had planned to. But I dislike panic attacks more it would seem.  I'm wondering if it's the sugar reacting in my body?  We'll see.  So don't count on me for any inappropriate drunken shenanigans anytime soon!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Some good Kitchen news!

So, y'all, we finally got some GOOD news about our kitchen renovation!  After failed attempt #1 and failed attempt #2, the husband took matters into his own hands and decided to rip up our entire kitchen floor to find out what was really going on. The floor guy had said he couldn't know what the problem was until we got down to the original level.  So when I went to Denver for my conference, the hubs took a sledgehammer and went to town.  He discovered parquet floors throughout the kitchen, which we suspected were there.  Why someone decided ugly vinyl tiles were better than parquet is beyond me. There seemed to be a bit of a slope in the floor but nothing I'd have even noticed if I weren't looking for it.

So we got our floor guy back out and he delivered the news.  It's totally fine and we can put WHATEVER flooring down we want!  No need to fix any joists.  No need to level the floor (except in the pantry - no biggie).  And no SEVEN THOUSAND DOLLAR check to be written for some structure problem that doesn't exist!  Hallelujah!

This means we're back to the drawing board.  We pulled out our original plans and tweaked them a bit last night. I'm actually happier with our current new layout design. So we need to buy new appliance ASAP (we're hoping there are some good Memorial Day sales going on).  Then the next step is finding a cabinet guy (or going with a big box store) and selecting the cabinets, hiring a contractor to widen one of the door frames, reconfigure the pantry and patch our ceiling to get rid of the stains from the water leaks.  Then it's electrical and plumbing. Countertops after the cabinets are installed and finally putting in the new flooring.  So basically we have everything left to do.  But we know we can do it!  I'm just praying no more huge financial hiccups come along our path.  And how bizarre is this?  We were at breakfast yesterday and I got to chatting with the mom at the table behind us and low and behold, she's an interior designer!  So maybe I'll get her help in selecting some things along the way!

Have you renovated your kitchen before?  Any tips?

I'm really excited to get this ball rolling again!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Mystery Hostess Social

Happy Friday friends!  Is anyone else surprised that we're already in the middle of May and that next weekend is Memorial Day weekend?!  There's only two more weeks of school for my munchkins and our schedules are filled with Parent-Teacher conferences, the end of tee-ball party, a Toddler Art Show and a few more soccer practices before it is officially summer!  

So I decided it's time for a Beautycounter End of the School Year Incentive! For a little fun in the midst of all the May craziness, I am having a MYSTERY HOSTESS SOCIAL!
Have you been thinking about trying Beautycounter's line of personal care and color cosmetics that are free of harmful toxins? Or are you already and a customer and need to re-stock your favorites or try something new like our new Spring/Summer Cosmetics? (The Dew Skin is fantastic!) Now is the perfect time!

Today through next Friday, May 22, for each product you buy, your name will go into a drawing for all of the hostess rewards!  That means one person will get 50% off a few Beautycounter products of your choice, PLUS, I'm throwing in a gift from me...our recently SOLD OUT Countertime Vibrant Eye Perfector! (Thankfully it's now back in stock! And one lucky winner will get one free as a gift from me!)
In addition, anyone who places an order of $200 or more will automatically get a Glow Sugar Scrub as a gift from me! I am happy to help place your order or answer any questions, just message me! Or shop the Mystery Social Here:

Monday, May 11, 2015

Truth. Beauty. Transparency.

Y'all.  I am so excited to be working with this amazing company.  Our founder and CEO, Gregg Renfrew was on FOX Business last week talking about Beautycounter and our mission.  Check out the clip below!

I've found what I want to be doing with my time.  I am loving this company.  I am loving the products and how great my skin looks.  And I am inspired by all the amazing women I'm in contact with because of this company.  My trip to Denver for the conference solidified everything I was already thinking.  It's hard work, but I know that this is my thing. This is my passion. I'm so thrilled to have found it and to share it with all of you!

UPDATE: a great article on Beautycounter was just published on Yahoo Finance. Check it out:

Thursday, April 30, 2015

How to Eat Your Way Through Chicago

On the whole we had a fabulous trip to Chicago.  We went on a culinary tour through the city, and it was awesome (and pricey).  Thursday afternoon the husband and I had a late lunch at The Gage thanks to a recommendation from my hip sister-in-law, Casey, where I dined on a steak salad with an Allagash White beer. Later in the afternoon we stopped in Eataly with my brother-in-law, Tom, for a beer and some Italian wine shopping. We then met up with the my husband's siblings and had a fantastic Mexican dinner of spicy shrimp tacos and misty’s sleeve cocktail (el tesoro platinum, ginger, hibiscus, orange, yucateco, hibiscus salt - delicous) at Mercadito.  We followed dinner with a night cap at a swanky bar called Untitled and a glass of Malbec.

Friday we got up and grabbed a green smoothie and eggs breakfast at Protein Bar, with a donut dessert for the husband at Dazed and Infused Donut Shop

We met up with Allison, my SIL, and her hubs for a day exploring the Art Institute. I was impressed with the size of the museum. It is massive and we didn't even get to see all the exhibits. We may have hit up half, because I than got hangry and demanded we eat immediately, if not sooner. We ended up grabbing lunch at Exchequer Pub. My black and blue burger, no bun, was good, but to be honest, anything would've tasted good at that point!  This girl does not do well with a missed meal!  That afternoon I met a friend for a glass of wine at the Lockwood Bar at the Palmer House Hilton.  We've had three babies between us since the last time we saw each other so there was lots to catch up on!  I then ventured out in a cab to meet the husband and his childhood BFF at a vintage bar called Headquarters Beercade where I tested my drinking tolerance by having a huge Blanche du Bruxelles beer.  We finished off the night with the best pizza in the city at Lou Malnati's. They luckily had a gluten free pizza for me to enjoy that was good, but it didn't hold a candle to their signature deep dish.  I'm thinking it might be worth the stomach aches to indulge in the real thing the next trip.

Saturday was wedding day!  Unfortunately it was also cold and rainy, but hubs and I got out anyway and found ourselves at Lyfe Kitchen where they had a Gluten Free menu  (along with a regular and vegan/vegetarian menus to choose from)!  I loved this restaurant and wish one would come to Atlanta (I'd say Macon, but, well, that's just not going to happen).  I got my nails done in the afternoon with another girlfriend and didn't really eat a real lunch (does a green juice and bar count?).  We were planning to meet friends for a drink at 4 before leaving for the wedding venue at 5.  So, of course, at 3:45 I'm fully dressed and sitting in the hotel bar about to order an appetizer and cocktail when my phone rings.  Husband was frantic asking where his suit was.  Turns out it was hanging in his closet in Macon.  Not ideal when you're less than an hour and a half from attending a wedding in Chicago. So we went on mad dash shopping excursion and somehow found an off the rack Tommy Hillfiger navy suit that is actually quite sharp.  Thank you Nordstrom Rack!

The wedding was beautiful and a blast.  Dan and Elizabeth were gorgeous and just glowing all evening.  I'm not sure the last time I danced as much as I did that night. I'm now wondering if I'm too old to go clubbing. And if there are clubs in Macon.... We'll have to look into that. It was one of the most fun weddings I've ever been to and I came away with a new favorite song - Shut Up and Dance.  Turn it up when you're having a down day and you'll be smiling in no time!  

It was a great trip. There's always a bittersweetness that lingers when we leave after a trip to Chicago. I think we can both envision a great life there and would love to be closer to family and friends up there.  Maybe one day.  Although, I think it'd be a pretty shocking cost of living adjustment to go to Chicago after living in Macon!  At least we get to visit often, and maybe I wouldn't love the Windy City if I actually lived there.  The 40 degree weather at the end of April is something I could certainly do without.

So now all Todd's fraternity brothers are married, which is sort of sad. There are no more gatherings on the horizon.  Maybe we can entice everyone to come to Macon for a visit.... 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Travel Packing for this Dummy

Am I the only one who has a moment of panic when packing for an upcoming trip? Suddenly everything in my closet is wrong. My shoes. My tops. My accessories. It is ridiculous. I don’t know why, but more times than not, before a trip I feel the need to go shopping. Which is completely backwards if you think about it – you’re going away to see people who you either don’t know at all or who rarely see you and therefore have no idea what is new versus your go-to tried-and-true outfits. It’s the people at home who realize you wear the exact same dress every Wednesday.

The husband and I are heading to Chicago tomorrow for four days and three nights of childfree adventure. I’m perhaps most looking forward to 3 nights of uninterrupted sleep. But I’m also excited about the fact that we’re going to one of my favorite cities. I LOVE Chicago. One day I hope we live in a condo in the middle of all the hustle and bustle. At this point it will have to wait until we’re empty nesters because this girl is not going back to city living anytime soon. But when we do, I picture us in Chicago. I love that it’s a real, walkable city. There is just something about the Windy City that sets this girls heart afloat. I don’t know if it’s because it’s my man’s hometown. Or the fact that I’ve never been to NYC so I can’t compare the two. But I adore Chicago. I love walking down Michigan Avenue. I love going down to Navy Pier and sightseeing on a boat tour or just taking in the sights. I love the shopping. I love the museums (we have the Art Institute on schedule for Friday, which I’ve never been to!). I even love riding the train. And who doesn’t love taking in a Cubs game?! Or grabbing a drink at the top of the Cock.

Admittedly, I don’t heart all these things in the winter quite as much, but one of my favorite trips was in December when my now-husband, then-boyfriend and I had only been dating a year.  We went up for his father’s retirement party and I was gifted tickets to Wicked by his parents as an early Christmas present. So after the retirement lunch at Bucket of Pepto, we strolled around the city with a stop in Marshall Fields for me to buy new shoes to replace the uncomfortable 4 inch wedges I thought were a good idea on the plane. We ate dinner at some diner, walked around an outdoor Christmas bonanza and then took in the show. It was a perfect day, even with the wind chill.

But that bad shoe choice has stuck with me. So now whenever we go to Chicago, I know we’re going to be walking much more than normal and I always feel my shoes are all wrong – I want them cute yet comfortable, which obviously I don’t own (for those that don’t’ know, I have a bit of a shoe obsession and have more shoes than is necessary). But you can’t buy a new pair of shoes a day before a trip and expect to not have blisters from wearing them all over the city. And the reality is that my current shoes are just fine. But my head gets all worried that I have the wrong stuff.  I think it’s the whole issue of only being able to bring a few things and then worrying I’ll hate what I brought and regret my choices.

I’m sounding more nuts as I continue, aren’t I?

Well, I went out and bought a bunch of new Spring tops this weekend. (Marshalls is my go-to store. I bought 6 tops and a pair of white jeans for under $160. So at least I’m a thrifty gal.  I did walk away from 2 killer Diane von Furstenberg dresses that I’m already regretting though.  Aren’t they cute? Yes I text my mom while in a dressing room. What of it?) So I have a bunch of new cutesy tops to wear this weekend, only problem is the high is about 52 each day we’ll be there.  So it’s my old, go-to sweaters to the rescue.

Moral of the story: Wear what you got girl. And don't look so angry in dressing room selfies.  Also, wear makeup and brush your hair.  Life lessons I'm clearly still learning.