Sunday, July 31, 2011

Distinguished Young Women

The Top 8

T's Distinguished Young Women experience came to a satisfying conclusion last night. She has had so much fun and was so glad she participated! We are crazy proud of her! She accomplished what she set out to do and has walked away with some wonderful friendships.

Friday night was prelims and she had a nice crowd cheering her on. Some of our neighbors came, some of her dance team friends were there, a couple of girls from the dance studio, her "little sister" and her family were there and a couple of my girlfriends came to support her. We had no idea what to expect and were very pleased with the event. Everything was exceptionally organized and everything ran smoothly. The girls were very well taken care of and were showered with lots of gifts and goodies over the past two weeks. T's little sister, Ashley, made her the most beautiful scrapbook! She was very sweet to T and they have a wonderful relationship. And, of course, Mrs. W, Ashlyn & The Boy were there to support her, too. The Boy also presented T with a beautiful bouquet of flowers Saturday night.

T & Her "Little Sister" (end of the night and T's hair/make-up is a hot mess!)

Friday night T participated in the opening number, fitness, talent and self-expression. The fitness number was INSANE. She told me it was rough but I had NO idea what she was talking about. Holy Cow. They were hard core and T totally rocked it. One of the mom's from the dance studio sat behind me and before the event even started she said her daughter came home earlier in the week and said, "Mom! T is SOLID in the fitness and is kicking every one's butt!" they did hard core aerobics, sit-ups, push-ups, crunches for well over 10 minutes. During the very last song (my personal favorite "Rock & Roll All Night" by Kiss) each girl came to the front of the stage and was spotlighted. T was very, very controlled and she was ripped. She's in excellent shape this summer. Her arms look like Linda Hamilton's from the Terminator. There is not an ounce of fat on her and she's incredibly strong and healthy. Her talent was wonderful but afterwards she told me she was trying to pull a quad (turn) to impress the judges but she just should have stayed with a triple. For her self-expression, T talked about lacrosse and dance and while they are on total ends of the spectrum, they both keep her balanced, grounded and healthy and help her to be the very best she can be. It really came from the heart and she nailed it. She never faltered or stumbled. Most of the other girls talked about community service or something like that.

Saturday afternoon she had her personal interview with the judges and wore her cute yellow suit. She looked like Elle Woods/Legally Blond/Barbie going off to Washington. Because she wants to major in communications, they asked her about the role the media played in the Casey Anthony trial, they asked her about health care and even asked her about the debt crisis.

The top 8 participants were announced Saturday night immediately following the opening number and we were super excited to hear her number announced! Earlier in the day Cosmo, KJ & I had talked about our top 8 predictions and I think we had 5 of the top 8. She had some tough, tough competition and she told me Saturday morning her goal was to make top 8. Being the only girl from her high school she felt she needed to get top 8 to represent the school and the community properly. So, once again, Saturday night she had to do the ENTIRE fitness routine again, her talent again and the self-expression choreographed dance. And this time, instead of her self-expression routine, she had to answer an on-stage question. She was super super nervous. You could just see it in her face. They asked her something about being on the broadcast team at school and I can't even remember her response. At the end of the night, T walked away with scholarship money for making the top 8 and she also won scholarship money for winning in the fitness category.

Truly, she had a great time, learned alot about herself and her abilities/character and made some great friends. Today, she had all the girls over to the pool for a little get-together and even though they had been together every day for the past 2 weeks, they were still so excited to see each other and let loose in the pool for a bit.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ole Miss ???

While I have enjoyed being "lacrosse free" the last couple of days (I started to type "lax free" but it sounded more like a stomach ailment medication), the following link from is too good not to share (even though the men's head coach is huge Giants fan). Oh, and check out the link
to read hubby's interview regarding the growth of the sport in the state of Alabama. He and Dave Link did not know they were both being interviewed and yet their responses are almost identical. In other lacrosse news, one of BamaLax's defenders is in Syracuse this weekend for a tournament and texted Champ that Princeton, Hopkins and the Syracuse coaches were there. He's a great kid both on and off the field and hope he gets some looks!

Summer Reading

I have a Vera Bradley e-reader cover in "Night & Day" which matches all of my beach / pool accessories but I'm totally loving this hot pink terrycloth one specifically for the beach. Good Lord! I'm such a sucker for accessories and love bags like this. I love bags with a purpose and love to be organized when I travel.

I'm kind of at a standstill with my Nook and I'm looking for a book to really grab me. I read The Hunger Games trilogy this summer and I'm looking forward to the movie. I read The Help a while ago, another movie I'm looking forward to. I read Unbroken this summer and thought it was quite simply one of the most amazing books I have ever read. I also was into Ken Follet this year (Fall of Giants). I read Sarah's Key a while ago and noticed that it's now in film. I've also seen ads for One Day with Anne Hathaway but never had a chance to read it. I'm a little confused though by the commercials I've seen for What to Expect When You're Expecting. I have no idea how they can possibly take what has easily become the go-to book for pregnant moms everywhere and turn it into a 90-minute movie.

I'm a big believer in "there's no such thing as a bad book" but let's face it. Some books capture your attention more than others.

A couple of books that keep appearing on everyone's "summer must read" lists are: Jennifer Weiner's Then Came You, The Paris Wife by Paula McLain about Ernest Hemingway and the woman who would eventually become his first of four wives, The Gap Year by Sarah Bird, Conquistadora by Esmeralda Santiago, and Sister by Rosamund Lupton (I think this may be my next Nook purchase).

Monday, July 25, 2011

Should I be Worried??

A couple of last minute / end of summer purchases to take on our last trip before school starts! I have been eye-balling / totally coveting the Blackberry pouch. Everything will look super cute with my straw totebag.

Another great weekend on the books! First time in a long time we've all been home together. No lacrosse tournaments, no one was traveling anywhere. T was busy w/ DYW stuff all weekend and we just had a very nice relaxing couple of days at home.

Friday and Saturday T and a bunch of girls went to dinner beforehand and then on to the Jefferson County DYW event to watch some of the girls they knew. T said there were 3 Hoover girls . . . two she knew, one she had never seen before in her life. The one girl did really great in talent and made the top 10 and T said the other girl's gown was positively breathtaking. Win or lose this coming weekend, T has set out what she intended to do . . . put herself out there, make some new friends, and gain some experience in public speaking. Very proud of her!

T ran into the mom of an ex-boyfriend over the weekend and the mom invited her over for Sunday dinner. Mrs. has always, always had a sweet spot for T and they have a very nice relationship. His older sister is very kind to T as well and always looks out for her. The whole family sent her very nice birthday wishes recently and I think they will be there to cheer her on this weekend. The Boy has grown on me over the years and has turned out to be a very good friend to T. He & T started off their relationship as friends, tried to date for a little while and ended up deciding they were better off as friends.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Compliments of "Oh, My Darling"

What Does Your Favorite Glitter Shoe Say About You?

I've always been a sucker for a fun personality quiz, so I'm turning this secret love into a new, tongue-in-cheek feature. This week's quick personality quiz is: what does your favorite glitter shoe say about you? Pick your favorite pair and get ready to gain some really important insights into who you are as a person.

Steve Madden Glitter Oxford: You seem like a practical girl to the world, but you have a secret love of glitz and glamour. You like to browse through the shelves at used bookstores and buy turnips at the local farmer's market. Sometimes you dance around your apartment, when no one else is around, and rock some serious jazz hands, while saying "JAZZ HANDSSSSSS" with lots of extra S's. Also, you are clumsy, hence your tendency to wear flat shoes. No judgment, everyone trips.
Kate Spade Charm Peeptoe: You're a sophisticated lady with a wild, multicolored sparkly streak. You are fond of to-do lists and day planners (bound in chic leather, of course), and you predicted the macaroon craze months before it happened. You're pretty sure that munchkin donuts will be hot next, but you'd never brag about having such keen baked goods trendspotting knowledge. Also, you are probably getting married in the next year because, let's be real -- Kate Spade shoes are a splurge best reserved for a very special occasion.
Miu Miu Glitter Platform Pump: You're fashion-forward with an extra dose of funkiness going on. You're capable of wearing these shoes to work without getting any weird looks, and most of us are totally jealous of your ability to pull that business off. You always either know or correctly guess the secret password at those speakeasy-style bars that are so big right now and, once you make it through those unmarked doors, can down champagne cocktails like nobody's business. Also, you don't own any clothing that involves fleece.

Promise Titanic Blush and Gold Glitter Platforms: You are a really cool person. You work for a nonprofit and/or go to great lengths to recycle things, mysteriously know how to contradance despite never taking lessons, and make a risotto so good that it once brought an entire dinner party to tears. You made out with a member of Animal Collective back in '08, but have mostly kept quiet about this (except during an intense game of "Never never have I ever," which is excusable). Also, I totally want to be your friend, especially if you wear a size seven shoe and are open to sharing these beauties.

Just a few more days

Summer's starting to wind down for our family. Once 7x7 football begins and T starts band camp, I kind of consider it back-to-school time. Yesterday was KJ's 6th grade registration and it went extremely smooth and very fast. She looked very grown up in her new outfit and even had a little make-up on. I swear, she's grown several inches this summer. There was hardly anyone at registration and if we hadn't stopped and chatted with everyone we knew, registration itself probably would have taken less than 5 minutes. She ran into last year's teacher (who will now be at the new school as well) and a bunch of her little girlfriends. She also ran into a couple of T's old middle school teachers so at least she's got some faces to put with the teacher's names. The gym teacher also introduced herself (she overhead me giving the school nurse our last name and recognized the name; she's worked with Cosmo several times to teach lacrosse in PE class).

T's dance team coach had a sweet, beautiful baby girl a month ago so we took her lunch yesterday and visited for a while. Wow. I hadn't held a "baby" baby in a long, long time. She's got a beautiful head of dark hair and the prettiest eyes. It was so funny to see T hold the baby. Of course, the baby fussed and cried a bit when T held her and she kind of got a panicked look on her face. T loves kids but I just don't see her marrying young and having children right away. It always bothers me a little when I hear of a girl getting engaged before graduating from college and getting married shortly after graduation. I just feel like they haven't experienced life yet. Like they went to college to get their Mrs. Degree, not their BA or BS degree.

Tonight I'm watching that bachelor/bachelorette-type show on CMT "Sweet Home Alabama." I don't know why I like this show but I do. I find it funny that they are referring to the guy from Phoenix as "City." Yeah, I guess Phoenix is a city but it's not a CITY as in fast-paced lifestyle. When I think of "City" I think of NY, Chicago, LA.. Not Phoenix. The girl, Devin, comes across very, very sweet but she's very young. A couple of the guys are cool, a couple are not. Not sure how I feel about the guy from Mountain Brook (seriously? who names their kid "Tribble"?? He HAD to have gotten teased a lot in school -- Tribble Dribble). The guy from New Jersy is a total tool and the guy named "Kash Keifer" is a total Kreeper and a Stage 5 Kligon. He reminds me of a Krazed stalker.

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Had a very, very nice weekend w/ KJ while Cosmo & Daughter #1 were at a lax tourney in Richmond. Friday I took KJ & a friend to laser tag and Johnny Rockets for dinner. Saturday, we barely moved off the couch (which was very much deserved and very much appreciated!). Sunday we met friends for lunch after church and then we hit the mall.

I was not looking forward to shopping w/ KJ at all. She's at a really weird stage, nothing fits right and she's horribly opinionated (she actually told me she wants T to take her shopping). She wanted a new outfit to wear to registration this week and said she doesn't want to shop at Justice anymore. She wants "middle school" clothes (i.e., Abercrombie, Hollister, American Eagle, etc.). Oh boy. We actually ended up making a huge dent in her back-to-school wardrobe and got some bargains, too! And, most importantly, we didn't kill each other in the process.

I don't know if Miss Priss thought she was getting her own private dressing room in the locker room or what but when I mentioned something about changing into PE clothes, she gave me the weirdest look and said, "Really? We all change in front of each other?" So, I took her to Aerie and had her properly fitted for "undergarments" (she doesn't like when I use the words "bra" or "panties"; said it's just "too weird" for her). She also got two pair of jeans at Delia's. One pair is a darker skinny jean to wear with ballet flats and the other pair is a flare leg for her cowboy boots. They had petite sizes and the length was PERFECT on her. They were also on sale buy one/get one 1/2 off plus if you actually tried on the jeans in the dressing room, they gave you a coupon for $10. She ended up getting both pairs of jeans for a total of $60 (which is about what I paid for her jeans at Justice anyway). She bought several tops at Forever 21, a shirt and tank at Hollister and gladiator sandals at DSW. We still need to find the ballet flats and I want her to get some cropped jeans or Bermudas for the first couple of weeks of school. She just got new sneakers for volleyball camp but I have no idea what condition her backpack is in. Last year she BEGGED me for a Vera Bradley messenger bag which she used for about a week. It was beautiful to look at but pretty much useless. She couldn't fit a damn thing in it.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sweet Home Alabama? Hardly

"I am easily satisfied with the very best." -- Winston Churchill

Last week T had her "drape" senior portraits with the photographer the school uses for yearbook photos. This week she had her first session with another local photographer as a senior rep and had SO much fun! I can't wait to see these photos! She had several outfits with her and also took her lacrosse uniform and equipment. She said Mrs. S showed her a couple of the photos and the lax session was intense. All-star season is winding down for everyone and she's got her last tournament of the summer coming up in Richmond, VA. The boys teams are heading to Hershey, PA this weekend and Cosmo had several boys attending the blue chip camp in Rhode Island (and a couple of them made the blue chip all-star games which is a HUGE deal!).

KJ's getting ready for "intermediate" school registration. All our paperwork is complete, just need to pay for everything. She's nervous / excited about lockers and changing clothes for PE. She's so unorganized, I'm anxious about how this is all going to pan out. I am totally expecting frantic phone calls from daughter #2 regarding forgotten PE clothes, missing math books, science projects, etc. She's a mess and she knows it. We've bought some fun accessories for her locker and she wants to start doing some clothes shopping.

So the other night a new "dating reality" show premiered on CMT. I've only ever watched the Bachelor (maybe it was the Bachelorette??) only once. We were on spring break and we had it on the TV while wee were getting ready to go to dinner. It was this most recent season with Emily and Brad. I don't think you're going to find true love on a reality show but I liked them both and wished they had been able to make it work. Anyway, I receive a lot of info at work from the convention & visitor's bureau and tourism councils. I've read a couple of press releases about this new show on CMT and one of them mentioned that the girl is from Tennessee but is a student in Tuscaloosa (I think they mentioned Cordova, TN; not sure if that's Memphis or Nashville). She's also a big beauty queen and was Tennessee's Miss Outstanding Teen when she was 16 and does a lot of modeling. She's a very, very beautiful young lady. Even though I don't like how the show perpetrates stupid stereotypes (red necks vs. city slickers), I will continue to watch the show because she comes across as very sweet and personable.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

So, So Proud!

Incredibly proud of KJ this weekend. She's participating in her first ever all-star lacrosse tournament in Chattanooga and, by all accounts, is doing awesome! I would love to take all the credit and say I taught her everything she knows but we all know the girls did not inherit their athleticism from me! This is the first year the state of Alabama has ever had a middle school girls all-star team and she scored the very first goal! Yay! One for the history books. She's playing attack this summer instead of her usual goalie position and is having a good time. She couldn't wait to text me "Mom! I scored my first goal in 3 years!" Being a goalie is tough. It's hot under all that equipment and if the team wins, you're a hero. If the team loses, you're the bad guy. There's really no glory in being the goalie.

Cosmo said she's being a trooper. T is used to playing in the heat of the summer, she's used to the grueling tournament schedule. This is all new to KJ and despite being on Eastern time, she woke up this morning and was at the field by 7 AM (6 AM CST). I worry about her because she was the youngest on her regular season team and she's also the youngest on this all-star team however Cosmo said it's a very sweet group of girls and they had a lot of fun at dinner last night.KJ got in the goal for the 3rd game of the day to give the other goalie a break and they lost to a U15 team 10 to 4 (keep in mind KJ is 11 years old). Apparently KJ took a pretty bad shot in the shoulder but all the girls on the sidelines were cheering her on and gave her some hugs after the game. They were going to dinner again tonight as a group and KJ said something about riding bikes (???).

Last night on TLC's season premiere of "Say Yest to the Dress-Atlanta" a bride from Tuscaloosa was featured, Holly Simpson. Holly has actually been at the hotel for most of the week with her family and got married today at the hotel. Last night's episode was filmed in December when she shopped for her dress and the TLC crew has been following her this week for a follow-up feature. Not sure when that will air.

I think one of my favorite things about working at the hotel is the coolness factor. I love coming home and telling the family about the various celebrities I've spoken with on the phone, the crazy demands some of them make, who's a diva/who's a jerk to the staff, who's a crappy tipper, etc. You would be amazed at the famous folks who have stayed a few miles from my home.

Monday, July 4, 2011


“My life is like a stroll on the near to the edge as I can go.” -- Thoreau

Home from a wonderful couple of days at the beach! Very relaxing, the hotel was great, the weather was absolutely perfect, the water was pristine and it was wonderful to spend time with each other.

I very rarely go in the water when we're at the beach but this past weekend the water was crystal clear and so incredibly warm. It felt very tropical and "Caribbean." My two girls were positively shocked. They have never seen me spend so much time in the water. We had such a good time riding waves, floating, snorkeling. Lots of good food this weekend, some black light mini golf (quite an experience and yes, I won), some go-karts (first time EVER riding a go-kart and yes, I lapped everyone and kicked butt), some arcade games, some skee ball (T kicked our butts). We visited our familiar haunts (Captain Anderson's, Pineapple Willy's) and tried some new places, too (Hanmerhead Freds, Tacky Jacks and Andy's Flour Power).

“I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.”
-- T. S. Eliot

Famous?? Really??

Came across this article on our local

While I do not think teenage pregnancy is a joking matter, I do think the title of this tidbit "Sarah's Famous Daughter" really cracks me up. Famous? Seriously? If Bristol Palin's mother wasn't the former Govenor of Alaska and a 2012 Presidential hopeful, she would be nothing but a sad statistic. Just another teenage pregnancy. Writing a memoir at the age of 20? Puh-leese. I would have so much more respect for this young lady if she stopped riding her mother's coat tails, if she would stop bashing her baby-daddy every chance she got and if she actually accomplished something. Maybe if she went back to school and did something worthwhile with her life (other than Dancing with the Stars) and became a role model for young girls I could take her a little bit more seriously. I also think it's a total cop-out that she claims to have lost her virginity after a couple of wine coolers. You had sex when you shouldn't have. Own up to it sister.

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"You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams." -- Dr. Seuss

"Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful." -- Sophia Loren

"There must be quite a few things a hot bath won't cure, but I don't know many of them." -- Sylvia Plath

“Life is too important to be taken seriously.” – Oscar Wilde

If people are truly, madly, deeply in love with each other, they will find a way.~Gilda Radner

“Never judge a day by its weather. Sunshine is uplifting; rain, nourishing; wind, exhilarating; snow, cleansing; hail, stimulating. Any weather is better than none.” -- Author Unknown

"Everything you see I owe to spaghetti." -- Sophia Loren

"I know I'm vulgar, but would you have me any other way?" -- Elizabeth Taylor

"After thirty, a body has a mind of its own." -- Bette Midler

"Cherish forever what makes you unique, 'cuz you're really a yawn if it goes." -- Bette Midler

“I know I can be diva-ish sometimes, but I have to be in control. The nature of my life, the nature of what I do, is divadom, it really is." -- Mariah Carey

"I want minimum information given with maximum politeness." -- Jackie Kennedy Onassis

"I've been called a diva, queen diva, diva supreme, and I love it. However, that's really for others to decide, not me." -- Aretha Franklin

"No one loves a party more than I. I am a people person." -- Aretha Franklin

"There are many little ways to enlarge your child's world. Love of books is the best of all." -- Jackie Kennedy Onassis
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