Friday, February 27, 2009

I know we're still weeks away....but its close...I can feel it.
Spring in Atlanta is always spectacular.
But more exciting than unpacking all our Lilly!

One of my girlfriends called the other day from Costco telling me they had Lilly for $25
--shut up & bring me home a few.
(gonna need a membership there for sure)
& I must tell you, I found these ridiculously cute sandals~
I sound like a snob, but lets face it~ we all love Target
but you'll need to head on into walmart to get these little numbers.
So Caroline is set!
Lilly shift $25
great sandals $7.50
dressing like a palm beach cutie for less than 40 bucks

For Valentines, my sweet guy bought me several charms for my silver james avery bracelet. Kristin actually gave this to me the night before dan & i married , with a dogwood blossom ( we married on easter weekend).
10 years have passed
& now my bracelet is completely full & doubling up on some of the links
--i love that jingle.
So to get my charms added, I needed to trek over to the mall

Our newest mall in Georgia is ginormous
I really don't like the mall
but this one has front row special 1 hour parking--i can whip in one "corner" of the mall
cruise through Nordstroms & pick up some of this

they were having a special
so i snagged this yummy bath gel for free

& splurged on the most wonderful candle ever.
Nordstroms customer service is above & beyond fabulous
I love going there
on that same "corner" i also have JCrew
speaking of stellar customer service
I love those people there
they make me happy
tried on some of these
they make me happy too
but truth be told...i totally scored a pair of jcrew white boyfriend chinos flare leg for
at good will!!
don't hate me
it was a total fluke
i have gone maybe twice in the last year to buy some jeans
(& yes, i've scored on some great Gap ones there)
but low & behold
these were on the front rack beside the jeans.
i never look through the other things because it takes entirely too much time

So after a surgical strike through my favorite corner of the mall ,
that i don't enjoy going to ,
I left a happy customer after being treated so wonderful by the folks at
Nordstrom, J Crew, James Avery, & Pottery Barn.
Is there really any other necessary stores there anyway?
( fyi--this mall sadly doesn't have anthro )
So back to thoughts of spring
I picked up this , what was once a tiny, hydrangea
from Kroger just after Christmas
I have kept in on my kitchen table & have thoroughly enjoyed its company

& yes, my shells all returned within moments of packing up Christmas
they help all the Lilly clothes feel welcome

Thursday, February 19, 2009

how to enlarge your blogger photos

oh happy day.....

i finally found how to enlarge pictures on blogger!

you can too, just head on over here

and ps, for all you fellow Lilly lovers
check this out!!!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

the good , the bad, & the ugly

The good first
So Savannah's 16th birthday weekend was nothing short of 48 hours of fun & celebrations. Her bff, pictured below, planned the most wonderful party for her. No detail was overlooked. I told her many times how fortunate she is to have Bailey as her bestie.
What a precious precious girl.

Bailey had reserved her neighborhood clubhouse & about 2 dozen girls came, no boys--really, no boys, all glammed up for a fun night together. Decadent deserts were served on silver platters. Many things in shades of blush & bashful--oh Shelby would have been so proud.
One of the things I brought was these too cute party rings; of course, SMK first rolled her eyes at me but they ended up being quite the hit, especially when "all the single ladies" came on. & yes, i have spared you those pictures of the dance because....well, lets just leave it at that.

I made pina colada pink punch ( of course without the rum, what are you thinking).

I'm here to tell ya, back in my day, no 16 year old girls looked like this!

Came home later that day to find a precious gift wrapped all lovely & perfect from my dear friend.
Scrumptious lavender rose goodies inside-you can check out here
thank you sweetie, you are loved!

now the bad
so , am i the last to know?
ShabbyChic filed chapter 11
go see for yourself

I'm telling you
that news, combined with my MOST favorite four mags, all ceased in publication
cottage living
country home
mary engelbreit's home companion
& domino
life for me will never be the same
& I say that with all seriousness my friends

& now the ugly
drum roll please
remember when i told you the overwhelming drama with my computer?
yeah, well turns out the virus thingy really was from the Russian Mafia
i am telling you the gosh honest truth

guess that explains why ,
when my "CSI-esque forensic guys"
(as i so affectionately refer to them)
didn't even crack a smile when i said
"so get back to me if you find out its linked with the mob"
while sportin my perfect barbie flip ponytail, thinking i was being all cute & funny.

I'm still waiting to hear back for the final word on exactly how & when this came in to my little ole' computer. My hubby was a missionary over in Russia about 15 years ago. I told him he shouldn't have smuggled so many matryoshka dolls back in to the USA~wink

On a positive note, I can provide you with quite the inservice on computer virus, malware & other misc malicious crud that can wreak havoc on your life.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

My sweet 16 Valentine!!

I've thought for several weeks on just what to say to you today.

I'm not eloquent but oh how I'd give anything to write you a beautiful letter. I'm not a song writer but how I'd love to pen you a wonderful melody. But I'll try to just write from my heart...

I know I've told you how i talked about having a little girl named Savannah before I was ever even married. Your due date was February 28th...however I hoped & I even think I boasted you'd be born in Valentines Day. After all, how sweet & perfect would that be. Went into labor on friday evening, February 12....labored all day the 13th...starting pushing at 10pm that night. I remember grumbling ( labor can make even the most cheerful woman somewhat irritable) that I was bummed we'd miss the valentines day birthday by just a few short hours. I've actually had someone ask, did I 'hold you in'--must have been a man--but sure enough, you were born Sunday February 14th 33 minutes past midnight--my most favorite valentines day gift ever.

Years ago it seemed like it was just you and me carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders. I never intended for you to grow up so fast, but you did. When daddy Gregg passed away you were 3 1/2 years old. I'm sure its hard for you to believe this , but I feel like you were years more mature than just a preschooler. You tried so hard to be a big girl; to be my helper & my best little friend. I wanted to be a great mommy to you ....for you to feel safe & for you to be a little girl blissfully unaware of sickness and death. But you were not, sadly you had watched that day when daddy took off his ball cap & gently shook out the remainder of his hair into the front yard. You sat sweetly on his lap in that dreadful hospital bed & tearfully loved on him just days before he passed. You told me on your fourth birthday that you didn't want a party if daddy couldn't be there.

When I started spending time with dad ( who would become your new dad) you knew he was a safe friend. How he loved to sit on the floor with you for hours on end being Demitri while you played Anastasia. He colored with you & you read to him ( you were an early reader!).
When I told you we were going to marry daddy you so sweetly & so gently hugged me and said you'd always miss daddy but you were happy that you would have a new daddy. Your blessing meant the world to me.

This weekend you turn 16 years old. I am just as proud of you now as I was when you were that strong 3 1/2 year old little girl....what seems like a lifetime ago. I guess in many ways it has been a lifetime, hasn't it baby girl?

There isn't a day that goes by that I am not busting at the seems proud to be your mom.

You are strong,

you are independent,

you have such a fabulous sense of humor,

you are smart as a wiz

--top 6% in your class of 700--,

a varsity athlete,

a christian leader,

best friend to so many,

a gorgeous gorgeous brown eyed girl

& a wonderful big sissy.

I see little girls look up to & admire you. I watch as friends want to include you in everything. I see boys look at you & smile. I see your poppi light up each time you come into the room.

A couple of years ago, Randy, your youth leader, wanted you to speak in front of hundreds of teenagers. We've always loved Randy & thought he walked on water. I'll never forget the precious look on your face when he introduced you as 'one of his most favorite people in the world'. Actually, I think you are a few folks favorite person in the world.

Sweet girl, the future is yours to dream those big dreams. I know you can be anything you set your heart to. You can accomplish what ever dream is starting to blossom in your soul. I will be here, cheering you on. Telling everyone how proud I am to be Savannah's mom.

I hope you don't mind that I put down in words
How wonderful life is
while you're in the world
(elton john)

Happy Birthday my Valentines Day baby girl

Thursday, February 12, 2009

things are looking up!

well i'm sure you could hardly sleep last night just wondering about the outcomes of both my ailing 7 year old & the status my computer.

so it turns out little missy had a "severe" case of strep--didn't know there were levels but apparently the doctor thought she was pretty sick with a "horrible case of strep"--which , at least, is much better than the flu! just this afternoon she has finally been fever free . for two days she has been significantly pitiful, only eating a few dozen pretzels & keeping raging high temps & chills. i've explained before she has ectodermal dysplasia and one of the issues is that its very hard for her to cool her self down. she perspires much much less than the average person....her fevers were over 105-so scarey. last night dan asked her, why are you still so sweet even though you feel so bad, she replied "i just can't refrain from kindness"--HA!

this afternoon two very CSI-esque forensic ( i'm talking complete with bald head and very cool shades) guys show up to copy my hard drive & do many other computer savy things to try to locate the "infection sector", "infection point" and diagnose exactly what's going on....they drove 8 hours round trip to come check out my little ole' computer virus thingy and i'm certain now they are using the term 'thingy'...... as they left i told them good luck & i hoped they catch the bad guys. remind you that at this point i've probably been online or on the phone with these 'corporate fraud investigative service' guys for close to 5 hours total in the last 3 days. i also jokingly asked them to let me know if it was linked to the russian mafia. in a very serious matter of fact tone they informed me that if indeed this was a criminal issue there would be federal investigation launched....holy cow!

my brother , a "computer guy" congratulated me on my quick response & being part of the solution--are you cracking up or what?!

so, temps near 70 degrees today--linens are currently bleaching & the windows are open to get a fresh breeze, taco soup is in the crock pot & beyonce and i are headed out for my 3miler.

despite the current physical infections & computer virus....the excitement is definitely building around here with loads of fun plans for the sweet 16 birthday weekend!!

oh yes, to answer a couple of ya'lls question--the shot of caroline from the previous post is about 5 years old. that hat--the cutest one ever--was my friends & she just loaned it to me for the little photo shoot. it may have even been a little 'one of a kind'.

pss---go check out jeanne & her fab give away!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

oh my...

sweet caroline came home from school yesterday feeling horrible with flu-like symptoms. by late afternoon she had spiked a temp between 104-105 that lasted for 7.5 hours. she slept fitfully (although she's comfortable now) all night. i already have a call into the office & hopefully she can be seen first thing this morning.
while all that was going on, i had major computer issues. tried to log on to my online bank account to see they needed identification confirmation with loads of personal data. called the bank as i'd never seen this before. moments later i get a call from a man who's title included
'Senior Engineer Emerging Threat Analysis and Solution DevelopmentCorporate Information Security'--had to go on a live chat with half a dozen technical men.....very very james try to locate the 'unknown malicious software virus thingy'...of course they didn't refer to it as a thingy....this took multiple phone calls totally over 3 hours.
supposedly we 'recovered the thingy' but possilby i could have 3 ferensic team members (seriously) fly in from north carolina to work on my hard drive....... geez

savannh turns sweet sixteen on valentines day

feeling a tad overwhelmed

Thursday, February 05, 2009

i hope we can still be friends....

Several weeks ago I was tagged by the most gorgeous pregnant woman---ever---Jen & then the other day by cutie~pie Amber.

I have loved blogging & meeting some of the most wonderful , encouraging women. Seriously, just the little notes or comments you leave make my day & leave me feeling like we really are all out there together; just trying to do our best & coming along side each other with cheers, cyberspace hugs, & even tears.

Jeanne I am so glad I found you & thank you for the Sisterhood award. You are precious.

Sweet Jennifer thank you so much for the Lemonade cute is that!

I love reading these from ya'll but honestly hate to do these on myself, but here goes.
I hope we'll still be friends! :)

oh & one more thing....not a blog award but i did win claudine hellmuth's latest scrapbook book over at rhonna's kickin blog!!!!! & just how cute is her little digi thingy she made? i really could use a settee just like that one! she & heidi swapp (the original inspiration to my world of scrapbooking) have teamed up with janet hopkins & have a new gig. I think i see a blog makeover in my future.

so anyway~~

25 random things about me ( snore)

1. We adopted a golden retriever about 2 years ago. He is my running partner every day. He's the perfect dog.

2. I watch little to no tv & really dislike reality tv. I watch Grey's Anatomy so I can hang with savannah and Idol to spend time with my girls because they love it.

3. I went to nursing school specifically to become a pediatric oncology nurse.

4. About 20 years ago, I told one of my best friends that I wanted four little girls, just like "Little Women". She thought I was crazy.
Turns outI had three of them within three years & then fourth was born almost eight years ago. I've certainly been blessed with my little women.

5. My birthday is april fools day which is such a shame as i am not a great joke teller. In fact i'm not even a funny person.

6. I can't watch any movies where an animal gets hurt or heaven forbid dies....old yeller & marley and me...not a chance.

7. I have a tattoo ( gasp)

8. If i didn't color my roots every 2-3 weeks my hair would be completely white.

9. I have a terrible memory.

10. I have run a half marathon, or maybe two.....i can't remember.

11. I'm an extroved homebody who loves spending time in my home, especially on a rainyday, in my jammies.

12. I am currently reading through the bible in chronological order & I love it....who needs reality tv when you're reading the Old Testament!

13. I have an unhealthy relationship with salt.

14. Just prior to Caroline's birth, I had two miscarriages both around 12 weeks. I was completely strung out stressed during her pregnancy.

15. I don't give people the benefit of the doubt--i wish i did though. I usually take things at face value. I really am working on this as things aren't always as they seem.

16. I drove a minivan for a few years & while I was trying to be greatful for a new car, I hated every minute of it. I'm much more comfortable with my Suburban innerself. But my dream car is a convertible Volkswagon Beetle .

17. Dan sends me cards, usually in the mail. So many in fact, that they fill up the entire box my beloved anthropologie boots shipped in.

18. I collect dishes & love setting the table. I have about 35 different sets of plates ( some are only about 6 of each style, but still.....)

19. I am blessed with wonderful godly parents. Growing up I woke up most mornings to find my mom downstairs having her quiet time & in prayer. My dad is one of the most loyal forgiving men I've ever known.

20. When I was in highschool ( which i loved by the way) the guys put together their 'ultimate girl' using different ones of us all combined ( if that makes sense) .....i was the legs! I'm still proud of that today, 25 years later.

21. I struggle terribly with fear of illness or becoming a burden to my family.

22. I was a widowed when I was 30--this has greatly shaped who I am today. Gregg was extremely healthy, ran full marathons, didn't drink or smoke & loved organic food. He was diagnosed with metastatic melanoma and passed away within 8 months. Ironically he passed away in the very hospital on the very floor I had worked years before , taking care of adults with cancer.

23. Dan ( the wonderful man I am married to ) had never told another woman he loved her until we met. He was actually one of the groomsman in my first there's a story for you!

24. I cut out all caffienated drinks 3 years ago, went cold turkey.

25. About every third day, I'm sporting a ball cap & a pony tail!

26. & just for fun.. ..this precious child ( the fourth of my said little women) asks me to come eat lunch with her just 'bout every day...tell me how on earth am i supposed to resist that face?

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

beautiful bird

Cindy Morgan has been a long time favorite of mine. She is a lyrical genius with the voice of an angel. It's sort of funny how I stumbled upon this song while thinking & praying for my girls.
(ps--make sure you pause my playlist first)

Monday, February 02, 2009


Its been a tough couple of days for this mom's heart.
Both my older girls are going through a tough time , each with big decision they need to make.
Nothing life or death
each is different
yet similar in many ways.
Both of them are strong, talented & confident girls. Its hard to see them each in a place where they are doubting themselves, doubting their skills, and their self confidence pretty near empty.
Dan & I spent some private time with each of them individually this weekend. We let them just vent, ramble, cry, and be tender.
I don't want to tell them what to do, actually neither of them asked me what they should do and i'm proud of that. While i want to guide them, its also my job as a mom to help prepare them for the day when they truly are independent. I want them to have convictions and opinions that are their own . I don't want either of them just to do or not do anything just to please us as parents. I am so proud of both of them.
To sit and listen to each of them verbalize frustration with themselves, that they aren't on the top their "A" game, nearly broke my heart in two.

I picked up a book this weekend, The Middle Place, that i'm just totally pumped about reading. Kelly Corrigan is amazing. To listen to her talk about mother~daughter relationships , father~daughter relationships, motherhood, friendships, her battle with breast cancer....she's just an incredibly gifted communicator. If you haven't watched her youtube video, i highly encourage you to stop for a few minutes, grab some tissues, & be touched.
I saw several book club interviews where she talks about many issues, mainly motherhood, & i just bawled right through them all.
I'm also reading a book by Adriana Trigiani, Milk Glass Moon. The main character is also raising a teenage daughter & has some wonderful mothering quotes...
let me share these~~
" I thought motherhood was a job with security, but its not.
It's the least permanent job in the world,
the only job in which your skills become obsolete overnight.
It was that way from the beginning.
When I finally got a handle on breastfeeding, it was time for solid food....
When she went to school, I thought she'd need me more, but all of a sudden she had a life apart from me & was just fine.......
This is , of course, the point of it all--
preparing your children to leave you..."

" as i hold her, i
wish for a second that i had another lifetime
just to be her friend instead of her mother"
"this is the best moment to be a parent,
when you see that your child is going to surpass you,
that her curiosity will take her places and teach her things
you never even thought about."
" she reads my heart like a passage from a play,
with emotional understanding of the moment
but with one eye always on the bigger picture"

Last night as I carefully studied each of their tender tear stained teenage faces, I couldn't help but see these little faces looking back at me....wasn't that just yesterday?