Friday, March 29, 2013

I'm Loving It!

As promised, here are some of the great finds I got at Americasmart (aka, market in ATL). Sorry for all of the random pics--this was my first time to pretend to be a fashion blogger and you can definitely tell. I think I will be investing in a tripod for any future fashion pictures!!

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Here is me trying to be a cute fashion blogger while my mom was trying on dresses in the Galleria. I got the cute green skinnies at market and have already worn them 3 different times! I totally adore them!!

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I started my jewelry run with this fun statement necklace in my "signature" color. Who doesn't love purple??

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I had to get this pretty thing because Farrah has one in pink and I was jealous!! Actually, I really liked the cream and thought it would match lots of outfits. Plus now Farrah and I can swap!

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When I saw this clutch I thought "VEGAS". I need to look super cute when we go to Miss USA and I think this clutch will help! It is really thin but opens wider than you would think so it will actually be functional. BONUS you get to see my cream skinnies that I purchased at market in this pic! Hooray! Also you can see that I am sporting my fave Kate Spade snow boots. Yes, it was so cold that day in MARCH in ALABAMA I felt the need to wear insulated snow boots. Go figure.

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This purse is so much more beautiful than it is in my sad pic. It is a rough material, more suitable for fall and winter, I feel. Of course I will be using this lovely at Bama football games when I wear my houndstooth coat!
Notice how I am justifying each purse purchase?

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I LOVE a cross body bag for shopping and traveling. They feel much more secure to me and typically I buy them smaller than my usual every day purse so they force me to take out the piles of unnecessary stuff I tote around with me and carry only essentials. This one was such a cute style and color I couldn't pass it up. Plus, it will hold a full sized bottle of water (I checked) when traveling and that is always a plus!

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Another cream purse, but it is DIFFERENT than the clutch! This purse is really beautiful and can hold all of my stuff, plus extras! It's almost more of a small tote. LOVE IT!!

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Clearly I was loving some cream when I shopped. This collar necklace is just the perfect length, if you ask me, and can dress an outfit both up and down!!

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LOVE this bow necklace! Perfect for everyday wearing!! I wore it Tuesday and got so many compliments!!

On top of all this swag, I also got 3 scarves, 2 of which were gifts, and 2 pairs of earrings, which refused to cooperate for photographs. I also found Mrs. Bailey's birthday gift! Sorry again that you were subjected to my sad little pics, but I hope you enjoyed seeing my new favorite things!!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Girlfriend Gala

Last Thursday Farrah and I joined forces again to decorate a table for Girlfriend Gala. The gala is a giant party for women to benefit our local United Way's Success by 6 program, which puts books into the homes of children in their campaign for literacy. There is always an overall theme for the night and then each table decorator chooses their own table theme. You may remember that our first year to decorate was a Las Vega theme and our table was "Tinis and Tiaras" and last year was a jungle theme and we did "King of the Jungle" with elephants (Roll Tide, of course).  This year the theme was Boots, Buckles, Bling, and Best Friends--a Western theme. Nothing about Farrah and I equals "western" so we went with "southern" and did a southern tea party. As usual, I come up with the idea, and by "come up with: I mean I literally dream them--that makes me crazy, I'm aware. This year our table was "Southern Hospitali-TEA" and I knew I wanted the gifts for each of our girlfriends to be antique tea cups, which I found for a STEAL last May. However, that is usually as far as I get when it comes to the table design. Farrah is the creative mind and she always takes my 1 sentence idea and turns it into something beautiful! I am good at execution, but creativity, not so much. That is why Farrah and I make the very best team!! Love you girlfriend (although I kind of HATE her right now because she is in VEGAS being warm and I'm freezing despite the fact that I am in Alabama--no fair). Anyway, the night was a smashing success, raising over $67,000 for Success by 6! WOW! That's a lot of money for books! We as usual had a fantastic time with all of our girlfriends and are looking forward to next year's gala already! The main theme is "Fairy Tale, Dreams, and Magical Things". I have already had my "theme dream" and have in idea but I'm not committed to it, although I have Farrah's design wheels turning already. I'd love for you all to comment with any suggestions!!

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Isn't it pretty! We did white cloths with lavender accents and chair ties. We had magnolia and daffodils for that perfect Southern feel! Each place setting had a silver charger with a tiny chair place card holder and lavender napkin. Of course each of our girlfriends got a gift, which was an antique tea cup! We had a bistro table with a tea party set on top and for a little extra fun we sprinkled split peas on the table! 

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We decorated the tea party table with my grandmother's antique tea set and some other pieces that my mom had. Farrah added the antique books!

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That night, we added pink cupcakes covered in pearls to the table, because who has tea with out treats? Each of our girlfriends got to take one home when the night was over!

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Place setting

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My sweet girlfriend Mamatha! This was her first gala and she LOVED it! Funny story about this pic. When we checked it I thought she said "Do I look brown?" and I said "YES! You look totally brown!!!" She had actually asked if she looked drunk (meaning were her eyes closed--she wasn't drunk). She was like "Catherine, I'm always brown!" Too funny!!

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This is my friend and colleague Jody. Men are not invited to the gala, except they are allowed to be waiters! This year they were appropriately dressed in their western wear!

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Farrah and I showing off our spot on the decorators board. It is kind of a big deal to be a decorator and we are so honored to get to do it!

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I LOVE that Jenny comes back to visit for Girlfriend Gala every year! I miss her so much!

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My original girlfriends, Mom and MMM, my sissy!

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Lots of girlfriends gala-ing!! 

Doesn't that look like fun!!!?? Don't forget to leave a comment with your table suggestion for the over all theme "Fairy Tales, Dreams, and Magical Things"!!!
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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Atlanta Craziness and Birthdays!!

I promised that I would tell you some fun tales about our weekend in Atlanta that didn't involve shopping or eating (well, everything I do involves eating so I can't promise that). Ok, so on Friday after my marathon shopping day at market I picked up the car at the hotel and drove to the convention center to pick up Forrest. Traffic was a little bad but I figured that was normal for Atlanta on a Friday afternoon at 4pm so I didn't really think twice about it---until we were stuck. Literally STUCK in downtown Atlanta. Every time I'd try to escape the traffic by turning a different way, I'd get trapped in again. I started to notice that several police cars were around and that several roads were blocked off. We were on the GA Tech campus by this time and I assumed that it had something to do with basketball since it is the NCAA tournament. I don't even knot if Atlanta is hosting any of the current rounds of the tournament but in my mind they were (since they are hosting the final 4) and I thought maybe one of the teams was practicing at GA Tech and they were trying to make their way to the arena (which was next door to the convention center where I picked up Forrest) so the road were blocked off. Makes perfect sense, right? I also noticed several helicopters buzzing around but they have those in big cities right? All I knew for sure was I ended up trapped on the campus of GA Tech for over an hour. Sitting. Starving. Thirsty. IN THE CAR. For over an hour. It was straight up misery. Forrest kept offering to drive because I literally would break out in tears over the steering wheel for 5 minutes at a time, but I wouldn't let him because he had to work the GPS and try to find alternate routes. I am no good at that--I'm just good at crying and driving. Finally, miraculously, we made it out and onto the interstate. NOT A GOOD IDEA!! It was just as crazy and they have like 6 lanes of traffic going each way and my frazzled nerves were in no mood to deal with all of that--except that I had to or else we would be squashed on the ATL freeway. When we came to a screeching halt yet again, I was revived by the good laugh that this truck gave me:

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And that was that. I got over the traffic and Forrest and I just talked and laughed until we were out. Of course, this is a good reason that I remain a small town girl--no traffic for me please!! The very best part of getting out of traffic was getting to see my brother! He lives in Atlanta and is super smart and fun and is an engineering consultant. I'm not quite sure what that is but he is very busy and important (and single!!).

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OK this is the WORST pic of me ever but it really shows how frazzled I got after the traffic event!

Ok, I lied. That was NOT that. Want to know why I was stuck in crazy traffic? Well a car apparently sped onto the road, knocking into a fire truck, which overturned and hit some other cars. The speeders ended up driving off and eventually got out of the car and ran. One of them even was shot by police!! (I didn't read or see this story, Forrest told me, so I may be a little off on my details, but this is basically the jist.). OK--so just to make it clear, I was stuck on the road while the police were running all around me trying to find these offenders--and they had guns!! And again, I was sitting STILL in the middle of this!!! Do we have that clear?? Maybe no more Atlanta for me, as this is the second time I've been wandering around in the middle of a manhunt totally unaware. Remember like 8ish years ago when a prisoner over took his jailer, shot up some people at the courthouse, escaped, stole several cars, and ended up with a hostage in an apartment building who made him breakfast and convinced him to turn himself in? Yeah, my dad and I were not only downtown when the manhunt was underway, but we also were in Buckhead at the same time he was stealing cars and shooting people. THANKFULLY, I have been safe in these scenarios, but OMG just thinking about it makes me so nervous!

Another ATL event was that the valet lost my car in the parking deck for nearly and hour, and that was pretty fun, let me tell you, except that I won't because it is boring!! I WILL tell you that we have been celebrating some birthdays around here lately and they need to be recognized!
First is Forrest's MOM! Hooray for Mrs. Bailey! We had a yummy lunch at Davis and Megumi's on Sunday after church. He made a delicious spaghetti sauce and I over achieved by buying a pie (I had no power for 4 days and then was out of town for 2, hopefully I get a pass??). I was in charge of the gift and I have to say I rocked that job!! Thank you Americasmart!!

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Sonny thought it was his birthday!!

 My Aunt Fran also had a birthday!! She and Mrs. Bailey are exactly 1 day apart in age, and their first born sons are also exactly 1 day apart. How totally crazy is that?? Since this is spring break in my town, my mom and I took my aunt to lunch at Bottega in Birmingham. DELICIOUS, I tell you! My lunch was so big that I couldn't eat dinner that night. I could have stopped eating and not been that full, but why would I do that???

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Legally Blogging Series--Meet Erica!

Hi and happy Tuesday! It's time for another installment of the Legally Blogging series. I hope you will check out our new friend Erica, as well as my co-hosts, Allison and Jackie! You can get their links below!

The Legally Blogging idea was dreamed up by three ladies who all met in blog-land and instantly clicked.  You could say it was love at first sight.  The immediate connection stemmed from the one thing they had in common: Law.  Obviously, as time went on, they discovered they had much more in common than just law, but that was a great starting point.

Here they are!

They decided to join forces and start a blogging series, to show that lawyers aren't always what you'd expect.  The main goal of the series is to connect with other legal ladies out there and meet some great new people.  Every week, the hope is to showcase a new person in the series.

Series so far:

If you're interested in participating in the Legally Blogging Series, just send an email to Jackie: jjstoughton [AT] gmail [DOT] com. 

We'd love to have you on board!

Aloha! My name is Erica and I blog over at To the Sea. I'm originally from a tiny island in the Gulf of Mexico- South Padre Island, Texas. I have a bad case of wanderlust (and am married to a Marine) so my life story has been a bit complicated since graduating high school in 2005. I started my undergrad career at U.T. Austin, but bounced around between The University of Hawaii and San Diego State University before eventually graduating with a degree in Physical Geography (from Hawaii). My interest in Environmental Law led me to law school at The University of Hawaii, where I graduated in 2012 (just two months after giving birth to my first daughter), but decided to take (and pass!) the Bar Exam in Texas last July. A few months later, my little family of three moved to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, where my career is currently (mostly) on hold. I still do long-distance work with the Hawaii Defense Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to defending Second Amendment rights in Hawaii.
Yup, that's just me and my favorite Supreme Court justice.

I blog about whatever life throws at me, for example: graduating law school and passing the bar with a newborn, life in Hawaii versus life in East Africa, wanderlust, parenting, fitness, and everything in between. I guess I would say I have a lifestyle blog.
1. Why did you start blogging?
I found out I was pregnant the summer before my last year of law school. I started blogging to share my experiences, hoard my memories, and to keep my family and friends back in Texas updated.
This is basically what it's like to be a pregnant law student in Hawaii.
That's my nine-month-preggo self  at my law school with Justice Sotomayor.
Studying for the Bar Exam with a newborn.
2. What do you like to do when you're not blogging?
My favorite thing to do is surf. I grew up surfing in Texas, and continued on with it in Hawaii, Cali, and now East Africa. I also enjoy running and weightlifting, drinking wine, traveling, scuba diving, and random adventures. I try as spend as much time as possible by the sea.

 3. What do you find is the biggest misconception about lawyers?
Where do I start? One thing that bothers me is the negativity towards criminal defense attorneys. I always hear things like, "How could you live with yourself knowing you set a child rapist free?" Criminal defense attorneys play an integral role in keeping this country free. How easy would it be for the government to lock people up it didn't agree with? How many innocent people would be imprisoned if it weren't for their attorneys? It seems that very few people think of that when they think of defense attorneys. Another thing that bothers me is that people assume lawyers became lawyers to make a lot of money. Countless lawyers pursue the profession to seek justice; many do their jobs for free.

 4. What's your favorite vacation you've been on? 
My favorite vacation wasn't really a vacation. During my undergrad days, I spent a summer studying Evolutionary Biology in the Galapagos Islands. School was a lot of work, but it was so much fun. The Galapagos Islands was a beautiful place, and every day felt like a dream. While I was there, I snorkeled with penguins, sea lions, and marine iguanas, surfed empty waves, and watched a volcano spontaneously erupt.

5. What's your best and worst home reno project?
I think the longest I've lived in one house since leaving my parents is just short of a year, so I haven't done much home reno. I think the most time I've spent on a house is when I decorated my daughter's nursery, even though I knew we'd only be in that house for about 9 months.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Being a Dentist's Wife

This weekend I got to be a real dentist's wife! I know that sounds silly because I have been a dentist's wife since Forrest graduated in June but we went to the Hinman dental convention in Atlanta this weekend where basically all I was was a dentist's wife.

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Hinman convention floor--it was like a big expo of dental stuff. OMG-2200+dentists shopping!! 

 I have to say, I could totally get use to that definition and if Forrest keeps taking me to things like this I will be ruined. Why? Well basically all a "dental spouse" does is spend money, eat, and drink--can't complain about that!! While Forrest was learning all about new advances in dentistry, I was shopping at Americasmart, aka Atlanta Market. Usually "regular" people do not get the opportunity to go to market because it is just for buyers and designers. However, with my handy "Dentist Spouse" badge (which I failed to take a pic of) I got in! It was SO much more than I had even hoped for, and the whole thing wasn't even opened! Designers and shop owners go to market to buy things to sell in their store so you can get everything for wholesale prices. I didn't want to waste a good opportunity for saving so I got several birthday gifts, some new skinny jeans (in mint AND cream) for summer, and tons of jewelry. Hopefully I'll be linking up with The Tiny Heart for Look What I Got later this week, so stay tuned to see my new goods!
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Market--floors and floors of stores! 

 After having lunch with Forrest, I went BACK to market and scored 4 purses. Hooray!! I'll give you a sneak peek:

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The next day, I woke up even earlier than Forrest to attend the Hinman tour of homes. Forrest and I are what I call "house nosy" because we love to see inside people's homes. We both love architecture and I am really into home design so a home tour was totally up my alley. I bonded with another dentist's wife who was in the process of building a new home herself so as we wandered through the homes, I got LOTS of great tips! Sorry in advance for the multitude of pics below--they are all just too good not to show!!

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House 1 was by far my favorite and I took the most pictures. Sorry there are random people in them! This was the dining room. This girl was NOT afraid of color, and I have to say I applaud her for it!

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Mudroom! So cute!

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This was the hearth room off of the kitchen

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Green and white kitchen

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Butler's Pantry--I LOVE butler's pantry's!

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Formal Living Room

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Other side of the living room

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Breakfast nook

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Powder room

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Formal living room of house 3. I loved the different colors and textures. 

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Loved the black and white with red accents.

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I'm trying to convince Forrest to make me a bench like this. 

After the tour we were taken to the Druid Hills Golf Club for lunch. We were greeted by waiters with trays of wine--at 11:30 am. It was perfectly chilled pinot--who was I to turn it down? Our lunch really was marvelous and I met some really sweet "dental spouses". What a great day, right? Well the fun didn't start there, because we got to have dinner at an AMAZING restaurant called Bacchanalia. We had a tasting menu and even though I was full by the third course, I powered on through to the fifth. Unfortunately Forrest and I couldn't enjoy dessert for the fifth course so we had 2 cheeses from the fourth course. Typically I love cheese but it is no fun eating cheese while your friends are eating chocolate cake with mint ice cream. Boo--at least there is only one more week of Lent!!
Can you see why I could totally make a career out of being a "dentist's wife". I'm currently researching other dental conventions that have spouses programs, so maybe I'll get in some more practice!
Think that is all that happened in Atlanta, well of course not. There has to have been some craziness involved (other than buying 4 purses), right? Well of course, you are right. I will save those for a later date, so get excited. Buzz words to look forward to: police chase, new ride, lost car. Exciting stuff!!

Don't forget to link up your weekend with Sami!

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