What a steal!

I have been lusting after the Avignon Dining Table from Ballad Designs for eons. Yesterday, thanks to Copy Cat Chic I scored a wonderful and less expensive copy from Pier 1 Imports.
The Avignon table costs $999.00 plus shipping and tax. The Scalloped Dining Table from Pier 1 cost me a whopping $179.98 plus tax!!! It was on clearance. What a steal! I am so happy! Not to mention my hubby gave me the money to buy it. Thanks honey!!! And thank you Copy Cat Chic for the tip. You rock!


Ooooh...a pretty mommy!

A couple of days ago, I was at my son's daycare about to pick him up for a doctor's appointment. The pre-K class was lined up in the hallway next to my son's classroom. In line was a cute little girl with wire-rimmed glasses. She had long brown hair with bangs. To be honest, she looked like me at that age. Skinny and awkward.

When she saw me, the little girl said, "Ooooh....look a pretty mommy!" And smiled the biggest crooked grin I've ever seen. My heart melted because she was being totally honest AND I haven't felt pretty in a L-O-N-G while. Most of the time, I sport a half blow-dried hair style (in desperate need of a root touch-up) and a thrown-together-at-the-last-minute-because-I-hit-the-snooze-button-for-30-minutes-before-I-dragged-my-tired-self-out-of-the-bed-look. If I have any accessories on, it's only because I didn't have a momnesia moment that morning. I've been so far from pretty in my eyes that it may have well been on the other side of the world.

But here a little girl that I didn't know (nor bribed) thought that I was PRETTY. After her exclamation, all the little girls in line wanted to hug the "pretty mommy." I got at least ten hugs from these little girls who then thought I was the coolest, "pretty mommy" because I hugged them. You would have thought they had hugged Miss America. WOW! What a great boost to my self-esteem. Better than chocolate.

The point of this story is that even when you don't think so there IS someone out there that thinks you are PRETTY. So the next time you are out running errands or at church or at work, find a mommy, a little girl or any woman in need of a compliment and tell her she is pretty. It will leave a lasting impression.


Made ~ Zebra print

I haven't done a lot of painting recently but here's a glimpse of a monogrammed plaque I did for a co-worker's baby shower gift. I think it turned out really cute.


Made - The littlest football fan

My son Asher will be turning one on Thanksgiving Day. Instead of competing with the holiday, we chose to have his 1st birthday party the Saturday before. Check out these cute invitations I picked out from Tiny Prints. They are so adorable!!! I am so in love with them.

To continue the football theme, I chose green, brown and white for the color scheme. I made a banner using a variety of cardstock and scrapbook paper (found at Hobby Lobby)including one that had the texture of a football (found at Michaels). I accented the banner with green grosgrain ribbon.

I purchased a cake from Publix that resembled a football field. I was so elated that the figurines had green and white jerseys. It was like I had them custom made for Asher's party! Talk about a theme coming together. Because it was Asher's first birthday, Publix threw in a smaller cake especially for him. I chose chocolate so it would show up better in the photos. The baker said I was only the third mom EVER at her bakery to order a chocolate cake for their child's birthday. Seriously?

For the menu, I chose typical game fare and a few other items...hot dogs, chips, buffalo chicken dip (instead of hot wings), spinach dip, veggie and fruit trays and brownies. The brownies were in the shape of footballs thanks to my new Wilton cupcake pan I got at Wal-Mart. I had white chocolate pecans and green and brown M&Ms. I also had a kiddie cookie tray filled with animal crackers, Nilla wafers and Goldfish.

On the gift table, I had blank cards waiting for party guests to fill out with coaching advice to the rookie Asher. Thanks to my friend KD for the inspiration.

I also created cute party favor bags filled with a small football, stickers, green and brown M&Ms and Teddy Bear Grahams. I attached a cute football tag that I created with cardstock and the football-textured paper.

Asher wore an adorable green jersey I ordered from simply colors. I love it! And it's something Asher can wear until he turns two. His "great" Aunt Brenda sent him a crown to wear on his special day. I think it's too cute!

Thanks to the nap he had prior to the party. Asher had a wonderful time with his friends and family. He didn't dive into his birthday cake as much as I thought but he did get messy enough for a costume change. His most favorite thing at the party was the balloons. Here's a photo of him about to give one a hug. Overall, I think the party was a success and I had a ball (no pun intended) planning it for the littlest football fan in my life. Happy Birthday my sweet Asher!

Bird Crafts Party

Read more: http://birdcrafts.blogspot.com/2010/04/party-link-party-and-sneaky-peek.html#ixzz0kHLdQLiX




My husband bought our son's Halloween costume way back in the middle of summer. This is a great accomplishment since my husband is typically a last second kind of guy. He bought the cutest Superman onesie -- another plus. The only problem with the costume is that it was short sleeved and well, hello, Halloween is in the fall when it is cool, if not cold. So to improvise and prevent our son from freezing, I dressed Asher in his Superman onesie and then layered over it a plaid button down shirt and some khaki pants. I even added a mini Daily Planet newspaper for him to hold. The look I was going for was Clark Kent transforming into Superman. It's not ideal but it would have to do. The only alternative was finding tights and I didn't want to go there. What do you think? Does the costume pass the cuteness test?


Weekend in Nash Vegas

This past weekend my husband and I went to Nashville (otherwise known as Nash Vegas) to celebrate his birthday. My hubby Robert is a HUGE Georgia Bulldogs fan so I gave him tickets to the Georgia vs. Vanderbilt game that weekend. I had never been to Nashville before so I had a little bit of an ulterior motive by giving him this gift. Sorry, honey!

We arrived late Friday night because I had a business meeting that morning that prevented us from leaving earlier and because of the traffic jams around Atlanta and Chattanooga. After a 6-1/2 hour drive, Robert and I arrived at our hotel near Opryland and went looking for some grub. The folks at the front desk suggested John A's for it's good food and live music. Something should have told us by the photos out front of John A's that you needed your AARP card to really enjoy this place. Hunger trumped our reasoning and we went on in. Obviously we were the youngest folks in this place besides a few grandkids that were there with their grandparents and one teenage musician. The live music was pretty good...a mix of classic country, some newer hits and a old rock n' roll tune every now and then. The baby back ribs were worth the visit to John A's. By far the best I've had in a LONG time. Robert and I probably would have gone downtown to the honky tonks that night but I was beyond tired. When did I become an old fuddy-duddy? Oh, it happened right after I started working 10-hour days and having to get up at 5 a.m.

Saturday morning I got to sleep in until 8 a.m. Woo-hoo! Then Robert and I got ready to go the Georgia vs. Vandy game. The game time temp was going to be a whopping 47 degrees with a wind chill of about 37. A little cold for a Southern belle like me. So thanks to living in Madison, WI for about 4 weeks two winters ago, I was smart enough to don my Cuddle Dudz underneath a warm woolen sweater, my favorite Lucky brand jeans, my trusty black leather car coat, new boots and newsboy cap. Don't forget the black leather gloves. My husband being the macho guy that he is said that he would be just fine with a windbreaker over his long sleeve t-shirt and football jersey and jeans combo. Guess who froze most of the game and who didn't?

Fortunately, Georgia won the football game so Robert was in a good mood for the rest of the weekend. After the game, we visited the Parthenon that is until my camera battery died. I did get a few good shots before it bit the dust. We had a late lunch at Ted's Montana Grill where I had the best roasted asparagus. Yum-o! Feeling fat and happy we went back to the hotel for a nap. (Yes, we are getting older.)

After a nap, we hit the honky tonks down and around on Broadway. The first was the Wildhorse Saloon where we sat on the second floor overlooking the dance floor. Robert and I had the best time watching people dance. Then we went to Robert's Western World to listen to Brazilbilly. Brazilbilly was pretty cool. The lead singer was from Brazil and he had a female fiddle player from France...only in America. While we were in RWW, I swear to you Abe Lincoln walked in. Talk about surreal! Anyway, I have the cell phone photo to prove it but can't get it uploaded to the computer. We finally left around 3 a.m. and stopped at White Castle for a late night snack. We don't have White Castles in our area so we wanted to compare their food to Krystal.

Sunday morning we walked around the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in amazement before we drove to Hillsboro Village to eat at the Pancake Pantry. Unfortunately, the line was too long for either one of us to wait to eat so we strolled on down the street to Bosco's for their jazz brunch. I had Oscar Benedict, a variation of Eggs Benedict with crab meat and asparagus added. Robert had a delicious smoked chicken and roasted red pepper omelet. We stopped in Fire Finch where I bought some cute earrings that match the necklace I bought in DC. Fire Finch is absolutely brill. After that we went to the Frist Center for the Visual Arts to catch the Georgia O'Keeffe exhibit. To our delight, it was Family Day at the Frist and admission was free. Score! The Frist Center resides in the old Nashville Post Office and is a wonderful example of Art Deco design. From there, we left Nash Vegas to head back home to Warner Vegas. Robert and I had a wonderful time in Nashville and are ready to go back. Many thanks to Amber for her terrific Nashville insider tips. And thanks to Jill who put me in touch with Amber.



Tuesday night I was still in DC when my friends Megan, Chellie and new friend Cynthia went to Constitution Hall for Shecky's Girls Night Out. This event was the best girls night out I have ever had! First, the event was ladies only. No boys allowed. (Like my six-year-old stepdaughter says, "Girls rule, boys drool.") With the price of your admission ticket, each lady received an awesome gift bag, unlimited cocktails and an exclusive shopping experience. What more could a girl want?

Each Shecky's Famous Goodie Bag was stuffed full of beauty products and other items from romance novels to CDs. Each goodie bag was different. Our little entourage dug through our bags evaluating all the loot we just scored. Then like little boys trading baseball cards we swapped items to personalize our bounty to suit each lady's taste. Cynthia received a Jesse McCartney CD in hers but traded with Chellie for a romance novel. I traded my teeth whitening trays with Megan for a great eyeshadow. Megan didn't like the color of the eyeshadow and I couldn't use the whitening trays because of my braces. It was definitely a win-win situation for us all.

On top of the goodie bag, the shopping was fantastic. Shecky's gets all types of vendors from all over the US to sell their goods at their Girls Night Out events. There was everything from jewelry to handbags, to beauty products, clothing and so much more. The selection was from a variety of indie designers and boutiques. You definitely can't find these things in Middle GA. I picked up a great necklace from Eda & Betty Heirloom Couture's Vintage Raindrop Collection at a SUPER discount and the cutest hand-crocheted cloche in green with purple trim from Volang. All my friends also bought a hat from Volang. They are all so unique and stylish!

The best part of the evening was being with just the girls. There is nothing like having good friends to enjoy life with. Good times. Good times.


Searching for Georgia

Detail of Self-Portrait Dedicated to Leo Trotsky by Frida Kahlo

I landed in DC yesterday for a business meeting. I had a few hours to kill so I thought I would go to the National Museum of Women in the Arts in hopes of seeing a previously-unseen-by-my-eyes Georgia O'Keeffe work. Sadly, the only work by her at NMWA is a charcoal drawing that was NOT on display today. Bummer! However, I did get to see a painting by Frida Kahlo titled Self-Portrait Dedicated to Leo Trotsky. My excursion wasn't a total loss. I read a wonderful quote from Georgia O'Keeffe, which has inspired me.

"One day seven years ago I found myself saying to myself, 'I can't live where I want to...I can't go where I want to go...I can't do what I want to...I can't even say what I want to...' I decided I was a very stupid fool not to at least paint as I wanted to." ~ Georgia O'Keeffe, 1923.

That's profound. I'm just saying.


Share the joy

It's Friday! It's Friday!...Did I mention that it's Friday? This photo of my little man cracks me up. I thought I would share it with you. Spread the joy. Happy Friday, ya'll!


Oh, Georgia!

I recently watched Georgia O'Keeffe, a Lifetime original movie I DVRed the weekend we were in Alabama visiting family. Being a working mom and traveling a bit more than usual, it took me a while to get around to watching this biopic. I've always been a huge fan of Georgia O'Keeffe. She is by far my favorite artist, next to Monet.

After watching the movie, I remembered something I had thought about before and have found intriguing. I find it a bit coincidental that my life has taken me to several places that were of some importance in Georgia O'Keeffe's life.

First of all, I lived in Amarillo, Texas for a couple of years during middle school. Georgia taught in the public schools there from 1912-1914 and at West Texas State Normal College in Canyon in 1916.

I also lived in Columbia, SC for many years and had the opportunity to study at Columbia College where she once taught in 1915. Instead I chose to go to the University of South Carolina to pursue a degree in public relations management. I am still kicking myself for not pursuing my degree in studio art. Thinking I would starve for the rest of my life, I chose a more sensible career field that came with a regular paycheck.

I visited New York City many times while my mom lived there for nearly 20 years. I visited all the major art museums there several times to view Georgia's paintings over and over again.

In 2007 and 2008, I was enrolled at the University of Wisconsin in Madison for a six-week management program. I was excited to be so near Georgia O'Keeffe's birthplace in Sun Prairie, where she was born in 1898. I thought that the Chazen Art Museum would have a few of her paintings. I was disappointed to see only one. Come on people! One of the most prolific female artists of all time was born less than 20 miles away and you only have one painting of hers on display. What a letdown!

Once on vacation I visited O'Keeffe Country (Taos area) in New Mexico and understand her desire to live there. It's one of the most beautiful places in the country that I have had the opportunity to see. If you haven't been to the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, you need to. It is the only museum in the world dedicated to a woman artist. The museum has over 1,100 of her paintings, drawings and sculptures that are displayed on a rotating basis. You will always see something new each time you visit.

I have yet to visit Ghost Ranch, Abiquiu and Lake George, NY but I hope to one day. They are on my list of places to see.

Getting back to the movie. The movie itself was well done. Joan Allen gave a wonderful performance as Georgia O'Keeffe. I especially liked the scene where she paints the mural at Radio City Music Hall. And Jeremy Irons was brilliantly cruel as Alfred Stieglitz, O'Keeffe's husband. I recommend watching it. It will leave you with the urge to create! All I can say is...Oh, Georgia!


A new endeavor

As long as I can remember I have had a love affair with fabric. As a child I used to dream about being a fashion designer. I could sketch on paper the most wonderful clothing designs (at least in my opinion). Just one problem. I couldn't sew a lick. So I abandoned the dream and moved on to advertising and public relations and painting in my spare time. This was especially prudent after I nearly failed middle school home ec because of my poor sewing skills. Thank goodness I was a good cook or I would have never passed!

I love going to fabric stores and fawning over this fabric or the other for its color or pattern or both. And I have acquired quite a stash. What I will do with my stash I don't know, but I have it. Over the years I have attempted to sew things like simple curtains, anything that just required a straight line, nothing fancy. I longed to create something more. Perhaps a quilt. It's just sewing straight lines, right? About a year ago, I saw a Better Homes and Gardens magazine called Quilts and More that had an easy quilt pattern that could be done in a couple of days. I held onto the magazine and secretly wished to make a quilt using this pattern. And I held onto it. And I held onto it.

Fast forward to the first of September 2009, a couple of weeks ago. I typically make a handmade gift for those on my Christmas list each year and was thinking of what I could make this year when I came across that magazine issue. Yes! I could make a quilt for some of those family members and friends on my Christmas list IF the pattern was as easy as the magazine said it was. So, here I am attempting to make my very first quilt using my trusty Brother sewing magazine and a Moda Fabric Layer Cake in Soiree. Above are photos of what I have done so far after about three hours of effort. Not bad for someone who is sewing challenged.


Keep calm and carry on

Well, I've launched my blog. Now, I just have to "keep calm and carry on."

I've always considered myself a bit of a Francophile but now since my marrying my husband Robert whose grandmother is a Brit I am becoming more enamoured with all things British. Just this week, Aunt Dori, Robert's great aunt, is visiting us from Manchester, England. Aunt Dori's accent is as thick as lemon curd. It is fun to listen to her British accent but sometimes it's hard to understand her. And then on top of that, understanding the difference between American English and English English. Oh ve! For example, I'm a Southern girl who loves her homemade biscuits smothered in sausage gravy. I know they're bad for me but they taste so good ;) However, biscuits in England are what we call cookies here in America. Makes you think what would gravy-covered Oreos would taste like. Yuck-o!

At 70, Aunt Dori is a hoot! She and her friend Dave like to hang out at the pub every night and drink scotch and lemonade. For us Americans, lemonade in England is actually Sprite or 7-Up. Confusing I know. Aunt Dori learned that lesson when we all went out to dinner one night. Aunt Dori and Dave also like to karaoke and dance. They are pretty hip for their age and keep us Yanks in stitches. They have turned us on to a (2006) British pop tune by the Scissor Sisters, "I Don't Feel Like Dancing." I can't get enough of it.
Try it out. You WILL feel like dancing. Until next time...cheerio!


Is it safe?

Hello world! I'm finally biting the bullet and starting my own blog after months of wishing, planning, dreaming and some worrying. Now, I'm finally doing. I'm a bit apprehensive, sort of like Ol' Blue here. Should I? Shouldn't I? Will they like me? Will they really, really like me? I hope the weebly wobbly way is safe. I've cinched my saddle. (Gulp!) Well, here I go. I hope there are happy trails ahead. Time will tell. Stay tuned.