25 November 2009

happy turkey day!!

wishing you a day full of family and blessings {and delicious food}! i'll be watching the parade and dog show and helping out with the turkey, sweet potatoes, and brussel sprouts. i made a pumpkin cheesecake this morning, so fingers crossed it turned out!

good luck on black friday!

24 November 2009

i am thankful for...

...the fact that i do not live near a starbucks. or a target. or sonic. or chick-fil-a.

because my bank account would most certainly be depleted and i would have quite the muffin top.

seriously, i've been back in the hometown for barely 48 hours and already have been overwhelmed by all of the options. multiple double tall one pump peppermint one pump white chocolate mocha non-fat no whip extra hot peppermint white chocolate mochas have been consumed. {yes, i am that customer.} there is the CONSTANT temptation of diet cherry limeades and small tots from the sonic that i can almost see from our house. i had a #1 combo at chick-fil-a for breakfast on saturday {that's an original sandwich, waffle fries, and a diet lemonade to the uninitiated}. and then there's target....i'm pretty sure i don't need to explain that to y'all.

i don't know how y'all manage to control yourselves. i live in a town with a wal*mart, a tractor supply, one mediocre local coffee shop with questionable hours, and a handful of fast food restaurants that don't stay open past 11pm, so it's fairly easy to control the purse strings. but lord help me, put me within 5 miles of any of the aforementioned establishments and i can't get the plastic out of my wallet fast enough.

thank god i'm out of here on friday or else my christmas shopping budget will be gone!

23 November 2009

i am thankful for...

...t.j. maxx!

today i went in looking for christmas cards and decorations. i left with shoes.

but not just any shoes, oh no.

i'm on the tory burch e-mail list, and this thanksgiving with tory e-mail came out a few days ago. not only am i dying to try reva's salmon spread {yum!}, but i have been lusting after the isabella pumps that tory will be wearing on thanksgiving day. they are just soooooo up my alley. too bad that price tag is absolutely nowhere to be found in my budget.

enter t.j. maxx. i found a pair of guess heels that are IDENTICAL to the isabella pumps {except they're suede, not satin} for $39.99. i literally squealed in the aisle. and might have pushed a few people out of the way. i can't quite remember....i was in the haze of retail victory.

run to your nearest t.j. maxx location and see if you can snag a pair yourself. they also had them in a darling holiday red and an on-trend smokey grey. happy shopping!

19 November 2009

it's an epidemic!

i just got an e-mail at work inviting me to attend the "holiday tree" lighting on december 4th.

it is a CHRISTMAS tree.
the ultimate
the sentimental favorite

no words necessary.
courtesy of tobi fairley. swoon. my most favoritest interior designer!!

...are CHRISTMAS trees. good grief, i'm starting to sound like my grandmother. not necessarily a bad thing, either.

i am thankful for...

...nina at according to nina!

because i was one of the winners of a set of SIX {yes, six!} haute market bags in nina's giveaway. oooh i can't wait to have a few of these monogrammed for myself and maybe give away a few as gifts....who am i kidding? i'll probably end up keeping them all to myself. i am a total bag lady. not a bad way to wrap up this week! happy thursday, ladies!

p.s. i'm SURE all of you are already loyal readers, but if not, you really should check out nina's blog. it's a delight!

18 November 2009

i am thankful for...


i love tea, any and all kinds. i tend to go through phases. in college, there was a big earl grey phase, followed by the tazo awake phase {courtesy of a starbucks-employed friend who got me a major discount}. right now, i'm stuck in a jasmine green tea phase. this obsession started when my bestie introduced me to the jasmine tea at caribou coffee. an unlikely source, i know, but it is truly delicious. it smells like honeysuckle, so it's like a little bit of summer in a warm, steaming winter cup of tea. and darling summer at b is for brown sent me the nummiest citron green tea this summer in a blog swap, so that was an obsession for at least a week this summer.

i also love sweet tea {i'm from the south. duh}, but i HATE lemon in my tea. and sweet tea vodka and i already have a long and storied history together that generally involves a college football game and several hours that i can't quite remember.

and my FAVORITE is the english tradition of afternoon and/or high tea. i did my study abroad at oxford {univ college, what what!} and i just loved that every morning at 10 on the nose we took a break for tea and biscuits {and catching up on whatever shenanigans ensued the night before at the pub}. it wasn't anything fancy, but it gave a nice sense of structure and formality to the morning. and we did the fancy high tea thing several times as well, complete with scones, sandwiches, tarts, and the whole nine yards. i felt like i should be wearing a fairy princess dress and serving my samantha doll and teddy bears.
i assume all of this is part of the WASP in me, but i can't be the only person who is this obsessed with tea!? anybody else?

16 November 2009

i am thankful for...

...my co-workers!

i know i have complained about my job before and ahem certain co-workers, but really, i am incredibly spoiled. i work a weird schedule most of the year because of the nature of my job. part of this means i finish the work week at noon on friday {yay!} but start the work week at 5:30 on sunday {boo!} i got into work last night to find a little gift from one of my colleagues.

when you search for "coke holiday ornament bottles" about a million images come up. when you search for "diet coke holiday ornament bottles" you get nothing. things i don't understand.

it is a poorly-kept secret around the office that i am a HUGE diet coke fanatic. i am completely addicted. yes, i know it's not particularly healthy, but i do not care. i found one of these adorable diet coke "ornament" bottles on top of a note that just said "merry christmas!" i'm working on finding out who left it, but the fact that it could be any number of people speaks volumes about my office. yes there are silly politics and rules and sometimes this job drives me nuts, but not only am i lucky to have a job at all, but a job that pays well, has great benefits, and surrounds me with people who leave me christmas diet cokes.

hope y'all had a great weekend!

13 November 2009

maybe one little thing i am ungrateful for...

why is this so difficult?

ok. this is driving me bonkers. so i'm trying to select my christmas correspondence. there are so many beautiful cards out there to choose from. and then i open them up. happy holidays. BLURG!! this is one of my biggest pet peeves.

trust me, i am about as bleeding heart, loosey-goosey, liberal as they come, but seriously, people. i have friends from many different religious backgrounds. some who celebrate christmas, some who celebrate hanukkah, some who don't celebrate anything at all, other than a season of delicious peppermint-flavored drinks at starbucks. and you know what? i would not be the least bit offended if i got a card wishing me a happy hanukkah or happy kwanzaa. you know why? because that is what THEY are celebrating and they're simply sharing the joy of their personal holiday and beliefs? me? I am celebrating christmas. so I want to send cards that say merry christmas.

is this too much to ask for? you know what really kills me? the cards that have CHRISTMAS trees on them and still say happy holidays. better yet, hallmark makes a set of cards with the nativity scene on the front that STILL says happy holidays on the inside.

please, i am begging you, makers of adorable letterpress cards that i reallllllllly want to buy, MAKE SOMETHING THAT SAYS CHRISTMAS ON IT!

day ??: i am thankful for...

...my bloggy friends!

thanks to all of your sweet get-well wishes, i am doing much better! my fever has been gone for almost 48 hours, my sore throat has all but disappeared, and best of all, i am not flu-achey anymore {that's the worst}. i'm back at work for a half-day today and then i'm off for the weekend. thank y'all for being the best readers EVER!!

on a more somber note, today would have been my darling aunt's 49th birthday. i'm headed to tennessee tonight with my mom, sister, and grandmama to be with her two daughters. her oldest, a, is my age. she's the music program director at a college in tennessee and tonight is the premiere of her first play there. they're doing little women and, appropriately enough, she is starring as marmee. i'm so proud of her and i know she's going to do an amazing job, but it's going to be a rough night for all of us. especially a. i know how much she wishes her wonderful mama could be here to see this. aunt m, i hope you are celebrating in heaven! i miss you so much.

11 November 2009


this week will be a pause in the "i am grateful for" posts because i am sick, sick, sick. today has been a little bit better and i'm headed to the doctor this afternoon. hopefully i'll be back in fighting form by this weekend!

06 November 2009

day 5: i am thankful for...

...my sister!

in many ways, my sister and i are polar opposites. i love pink and high heels and chanel and perfume and old audrey hepburn movies and anything sparkly. she would rather die than wear pink, she lives for new balance running shoes and birkenstocks, her idea of a label whore involves athletic gear {think nike vs. adidas}, the closest she gets to perfume is dove powder-fresh deoderant, she falls asleep during any movie that isn't based on a john grisham novel, and well....she had dreadlocks.

but we have pretty much the exact same outlook on everything. identical sense of humor. she is the only other person i know who truly understands why home alone and dumb and dumber are the funniest movies of all time. and the only other person who i can commiserate with about our darling mother, who happens to be the queen of a land called passiveagressiva. and the only other person who thinks our daddy's short temper is hilarious.

she has been dealing with some health issues recently {ones i won't discuss here because that's her business}, but needless to say, it's been a scary couple of months. and will continue to be, as this is something she will battle for the rest of her life. seeing what my mom went through and is continuing to deal with after her sister died this summer has made me appreciate mine that much more. so i told her that if she didn't get better, i would physically harm her.

because honestly...there's no one else i'd rather get lost in southern california looking for an in-and-out burger with. love you, sis!

day 4: i am thankful for...

....these commercials!

seriously, they both send me other the edge in fits of giggles. especially the geico one. i literally called my sister from nyc to tell her what channel it was on. it's become a bit of a family joke. maybe because that's how we all talk...

05 November 2009

day 3: i am thankful for...

...hot cocoa {continuing the theme of this morning's post}
i'm not that much of a cold-weather person {i.e. i HATE being cold}, but i love the idea of it. i love sweaters and blankets and fireplaces and getting all snuggled up. nothing is more comforting to me than curling up on the couch in sweats, my ll bean shearling slippers, and a steaming mug of hot cocoa. i know that the "real" hot chocolate is just hot milk and chocolate shavings {a la williams sonoma}, but my sister's and my favorite is this homemade mix we call vicki hot chocolate. my mom's bestie, vicki, used to make us a huge container of this every year for christmas. it's sooooo good, and believe me, this recipe makes enough to last until the final snow melts away. Enjoy!

7 cups instant, nonfat dry milk
1 lb powdered sugar
2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder {as ina would say, use the good stuff}
2 cups powdered non-dairy creamer
2 cups mini marshmallows
1 cup mini chocolate chips

Combine all ingredients and store in an airtight container.
For each serving, mix 1/3 cup cocoa mix with 3/4 cup boiling water. Stir until chocolate chips melt. Yield: 14 cups mix; 42 servings.
Soooooo yummy!


how do i make a video from youtube actually show up in my post? i know how to just add the link, but i've seen on many of yours where you can actually click the video image in the post. how do i do this? it is of utmost importance!

day 2: i am thankful for...

...starbucks christmas drinks!

i'm a bad blogger. i forgot to post yesterday and tuesday, so you're getting two posts today and tomorrow.

judge me if you must, but corporate america is alive and well if we're measuring by starbucks. year-round, i normally stick with tall skinny cinnamon dolce lattes. in the summer, it's the tazo passion shaken iced tea lemonade. but there is a magical time of year where one drink outweighs them all:

the white chocolate peppermint mocha. complete with festive sprinkles and that darling starbucks red cup. two years ago, i was stuck at the atlanta airport the day these drinks came out. i went to every starbucks in every terminal trying to get one. their peppermint syrup had not been delivered yet. they nearly ruined my christmas.

bonus this year: my little sister has landed a part-time job at starbucks while she's home for the holidays. hellloooooooo family discount!

02 November 2009

day 1: i am thankful for...

...my amazing friends!

i will be the first to admit that i haven't always been the best friend. in high school and middle school {and to some extent, still today}, i had terribly low self-esteem. i was a cheerleader, which meant i spent most of my formative years surrounded by terribly catty, mean girls. so i learned not to trust anyone, to assume that everyone talked about everyone behind each others' backs, and to be extrememly uncomfortable and jealous around anyone who i thought was prettier, nicer, funnier, smarter, skinnier, and/or more popular than me.

it wasn't until college that i truly started to learn how to be a friend to other women. thank god for the amazing women i met there {and have met since!} for having the patience to show me how to be a good friend. it is something i still struggle with, but i am surrounded by wonderful examples, so they help keep me on the path straight and narrow.

no better reminder of this than the halloween party. in walks this drop-dead gorgeous girl who put all of us to shame and of course my immediate internal reaction is, "bitch!". she ended up being one of the nicest people i have met in ages. we spent half the night bonding over shared childhood dance costume memories. and i felt like an idiot.

the party was a roaring success! everyone looked AMAZING, the food spread was incredible {i ate my weight in queso and red velvet tombstone cake}, and the spooky jell-o shots were gone within about 15 minutes. some of the girls ended the night with a good old-fashioned sleepover. sweatpants, scattegories, and movies. late morning brunch of french toast sticks and party reminiscence. so. much. fun.

my friends have been my cheerleaders, my grief counselors, my matchmakers, my puppy boy-sitters, my partners-in-crime, and my never-fail support system over the past 6 years in ways i could never imagine. and over the past year, i have had the joy and privilege of making even more bloggy-friends than i knew were possible.

so THANK YOU to all of you for making life even sweeter than it already is!