• Fashion is about what you wear. Style is about how you live your life. ~Ralph Lauren

Monday, May 30, 2011

M Day

 I know Memorial Day is more than nice weather, BBQs and fun so I want to start off with saying that I appreciate all the people that defend our country and the ones that have given their lives in that pursuit. 

Today was a lovely day.   I usually attend a parade but it wasn't in the cards this year.  Instead I spent the morning drinking a big coffee and getting some of my projects done.  I was wildly productive.  I adore mornings spent organizing and doing stuff at home.  I'm finding with the close of the last chapter of my life, I actually want to be at home, in my own space.  It's so nice to concentrate my own world again. 

Anyway, I have been going to yard sales with some friends on Saturday mornings and I pretty much use my back porch as a storage area until I do the projects that I bought stuff for.   BUT, I couldn't take it.  The entrance to my house is through this back porch and it was so awful looking.  It really started to look like an episode of hoarders. 

 I actually have a few before/after posts to do just on this alone but I wanted to give you an overview of what the back porch looks like now.  I wanted to add a rocking chair so I could actually sit out there on a rainy day and read. ( Note the screen hanging on the wall.  That will be a later post because I have to finish my vision for that at some point.)  I also need to paint the table to coordinate.  The best part of this is that everything for this was under $20 thanks to yard sales last summer and this.  I can't wait to finish up but it's WAY better than before.

My favorite part of this "vignette" is the crate.  I added  a coat of spray paint so that it looks a little weathered.  I'm going to add some different plants to it but for now I put the flowers from the graduation ceremony on there (and added the flag in honor of today).  I think some green plants will look great on this. 
 After I finished a few other projects (stay tuned), I went out to our campus lake for the afternoon with Jill, Gillian and Cedar.  It was so hot but wonderful.  I don't swim in this lake (too much stuff floating in it for my taste) but I like being near the water.  Cedar had a great time swimming though. 
 We then headed over to a different lake for a BBQ with Jill's parents.  They house sit for people that live out of state so they are there often.  It's a really lovely place.  The weather was outstanding and the view was so relaxing. 

 Here is the house (with Jill and Gillian) It's so cute.  I wish I could live here.
 Here the ladies are by the hot tub.
 We stayed until it was dark and headed home (it's only 10 minutes away).  It turned out to be a really great, relaxing day.  I feel more like myself than I have in months, thankfully. 

I hope that you all had a great weekend!  

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Caps, Gowns, and Memories

Yesterday was graduation at the college I work at.  It's a day I really look forward to for many reasons.  Selfishly, it means the campus will be empty for a few months and I can have some quiet office time.  But more importantly, I look forward to this day because I like watching the students have this moment that they've worked for four years.  This year, I felt a little sad too.  Again, selfishly because I will miss seeing a few of my favorite students on a daily basis.  There are lots of students that come and go but there are always a few that I feel extra proud to have known. 

Me and LBL before the ceremony.   Awful picture of me but regalia is never cute.  blah.
 SC and I after the ceremony. 
 My favorite part of the graduation ceremony?  The bagpipes.  If I ever get married, I want bagpipes at my wedding. 
 During the entire ceremony, I had to stand in the isle to help with crowd control.  This ceremony was about 2 hours.  But my feet felt like it was 7.  While I was watching the students walk across the stage to receive their degrees, I started thinking about my own graduations and remembering how I felt during each ceremony.  All of them were slightly boring so I don't remember much about the actual ceremony.  What I do remember is the excitement, the anxiety, and the pride I felt in my school and my classmates.  And at each one I was wondering where my parents were in the crowd and hoping they were proud of me. I felt like today would be a good time to walk down my memory lane....

At HS graduation.  I sat in the front row because I was a reader of parent letters.  I was so excited this day but also so anxious about how my life was about to change.  I was moving back from Germany to the states and I was never going to see most of my 64 classmates again.  But I felt proud when I walked across the stage and they announced my post high school plans of going to college and becoming an elementary teacher. 
 On my college graduation day.  Yes, I did get a teaching degree proudly from the same school that my grandmother and other family members attended.    What I remember clearly about this day was getting up really early, sitting on the front steps of my residence hall where I was an RA and painting my nails in an effort to forget how hungover I was already.  I went out like a rock start the night before.  For a few minutes I thought I might be too sick to walk through graduation but I pulled through.  I was super excited to be a college graduate but I was really sad that college was over.  And I remember being really annoyed with the lining up of graduates in the student union and vowed that I would never walk through my masters ceremony. 
But what did I know.  Six years after I graduated from college, I once again put on a black robe and added a hood to my regalia.  I remember being really happy to be done with my master's degree and laughing a lot with my cohort during the ceremony.  I remember feeling really proud to have graduated from Syracuse because I know my dad was happy about that. I was also anxious about the future.   But that day, it was about my friends and the laughter that got us through the last two years.  It was nice because we had a cohort reception with our families. 
 Me and Dad

Every year I'm lucky to watch a new batch of students graduate and have their own moment.  I see the same excitement, anxiety and pride in their faces and I can't help but smile with a tear in my eye because these are the moments and feelings that they'll tell in the story of their graduation day.

What do you remember most about your graduation days?

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Wribbon Wreath

I know I spelled ribbon wrong on the title.  I thought I was being clever.  Ha.  Whatever, I'm tired.  Today was graduation so I had to stand for 3 hours in regalia.  I need a nap, but I felt like to finally posting pictures of this project.  It started a few months ago.  A few friends ordered ribbon from ebay or etsy or something (I don't  know, Angie was in charge of that) and we were going to get together and do these wreaths together.  I'm pretty sure there was still snow on the ground when we started this. 

Anyway, the ribbon came in and months we spent one night cutting all the ribbon and made loops secured by a dab of hot glue.  That took about an hour or so.  I'm pretty sure the wine I drank whilst doing this project kept me entertained.  Fast forward to a few weeks ago and we finally got around to finishing. 

Basically, we took the aforementioned ribbon loops and glued them on a wreath form randomly.  Here it is as I was getting started.  Wine was in order for this part too.  That definitely helped with the burns I received from the hot glue gun. 
This is the finished product.  It now lives on my office door.  It's definitely a bright and fun addition for the summer. 
I should make another for the fall.  Judging by how long this one took to complete, I better get started now...

After I take a nap.

Happy Saturday! 

Friday, May 27, 2011

Feta is Betta

This week, my friend Sabrina (poppies and pinwheels) had a 31 party.  I have never been to one of those so I was excited to go check it out.   The stuff is cute.  I'll share my treasures when they come in. 

 Anyway, I decided to try out a new recipe and bring it over to the party.   I found this recipe on a blog but I can not find it now to give the proper credit.  So if this is a recipe from your blog and you happen to read this, I'm giving you full credit.  I love feta cheese so when I saw this, I really needed to try it.  

Feta Dip--What You Need:
  • olive oil
  • 1 block of feta cheese
  • 3 tomatoes
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 3 tsp. Greek seasoning
  • 1 baguette
What To Do:
1.  Wet large platter generously with olive oil
2.  Dice green onions and tomatoes
3.  Throw them on the olive oil
4.  Crumble feta cheese and throw them on the platter too
5.  Sprinkle the Greek seasoning on top (yes, there is actually Greek seasoning--I never knew)
6.  Mix it all together gently on the platter
7.  Slice baguette thinly for dipping.
8.  Enjoy!
And that's it.  Easy.  My critique--I think I was too generous with the oil.  Next time I'll use less.  Otherwise, I really liked it and will make it again for the next party.   And it's perfect for snacking with a glass of wine in hand.   Thanks to the blogger that shared it first and thanks to Sabrina for having a party that allowed me to try it out!! 

Happy Friday!  What are your weekend plans?

Thursday, May 26, 2011


In the last week, not much has changed and yet, it has.  About a week ago, I realized the truth about a person that I thought was a good guy.  A good friend.  Turns out, he was never really my friend at all and I wasted a very long two years thinking about him and hoping we'd get to a different point.  And strangely, as sad as that makes me, I'm a little bit relieved.  Now there is no wondering.  Now I know for sure. As much as it stings a little right now, I believe my heart will heal and I'll be thankful one day. Since last Thursday I've been re framing things and looking for the good in all of the things that I've been feeling lately. 

So you can imagine my delight when I was doing my daily blog reading,  I discovered  that my friend, Allison from Life in the Slow Lane,  had given me the Stylish Blogger Award! 

 I never think of myself as stylish but I'm flattered if someone out there does.  So for this award I'm supposed to share some of my fashion dos/don'ts. 

I will share two things I believe in strongly.  I believe in classic, simple clothes.  I love dresses.  I love heels.  I feel like that always makes someone pulled together.  I really believe that good accessories can enhance any outfit.   A simple black dress can be sassy with a headband, cute shoes, a fun bag and good costume jewelry. 

Like this little guy.  I got him for $1.50 at an "antique/junk" store.  I really loved the stone.  Adds a little sass. 
And my most important belief in my style is always have freshly painted nails.  I think it looks like an effort was made.  And chipped nails are ever acceptable.  Ever.
(I'm currently wearing Planks A lot by OPI)
And I'm supposed to pass this on.  I'd like to pass it on to one of my favorite people to talk about style/fashion with:  Cristina from Pinkhouse Press.  She has style and class and will certainly have some fun tips for us! 

This was fun! Thanks, Allison for the shout out! :)

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Shoe Fits.

I've had lots of shoes in my lifetime.  Many I've really enjoyed.  Some I haven't really cared for.  Some I only wore once or twice, some that I held on to for too long.   Many that I couldn't wait to wear,  and some I was sad to see go.  But every once in awhile there is a pair that is so good that you never get over them .
(This metaphor also represents the boys that have been in my life too)

Meet my current-can't-get-over-pair.  

Nothing fancy.  Black wedges from payless.   But they were so good the first time I got them 2 years ago, I have replaced them 3 times.  And I'm about to get another pair to make sure I have them for the whole summer.  Oh, and I did get them in denim this year too. 

I know it's not forever, but for now, they are exactly what I'm looking for. 
(Let's hope this is what I'll be saying about a new boy soon too)

Happy Monday!

Thursday, May 19, 2011


I still don't have a lot of good news to report but I know the show has to go on.  So I'll share something fun from last week.  My St. Jude rep, Courtney came to campus last Sunday to do a retreat with our group.  I wanted to get her a little something for doing that.  So I decided to put together a little gift "basket".

I started out with a cute little dish that I picked up at a yard sale. I saw it and immediately thought it was perfect for a manicure dish. 
I picked up some supplies for a little manicure session (nail polish remover, files, buffer, clippers, lotion and nail polish--of course)
...added a little tissue paper to the dish and put the supplies in.
and wrapped it up with a bow!
I loved it because it's exactly the kind of little gift that I'd like to get.   And the nail color...too too hot by essie.  Just like Courtney.  :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Normally I don't like to write about my feelings but I need to because I'm tired.  Physically and mentally. 
I'm just tired....

...of the rain.
...of my clothes
...of feeling angry at everything.
...of never feeling like my house is clean enough.
...of missing people.
...of feeling awful about my job.
...of not trusting people.
...of having a broken heart.  that keeps getting broken.
...of my stupid tire being flat. 
...of crying.
...of feeling old and gross.
...of wondering.
...of waking up worrying about things I can't control.
...of feeling guilty.
...of not having fun.
...of not feeling cute.
...of not believing.
...of facebook.
...of conversations that  never happen.
...of being jealous and insecure.
...of not blogging about anything.
...of never getting anything done for real.
...of not laughing as much as I used to.
...of not being funny.
...of my phone not ringing.
...of the stack of books I haven't read because I'm tired.
...of trying to pretend I'm not feeling any of these things.

How's that for keeping it real?  It is what it is.  This blog is supposed to be stuff I'd talk about with my friends, so that's what I'm feeling. 

I'm going to get some sleep.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

A Great One

I feel really lucky that in my life I've gotten to spend time with women in my family that are pretty incredible.  Today I went to honor one of those women at her funeral, Aunt Velma.  Velma was my Dad's aunt (my grandfather's sister). So that made her my Great Aunt.  And she was.  I know many people don't really know their Great Aunts and Uncles.  And I have lots of them.  But really the only two that I've ever had in my life on a consistent basis were my Aunt Velma and her sister Aunt Marian. 

Aunt Velma was a teacher and a historian.  She was passionate about education.  I'm proud that I attended the same college as her.  I was always impressed that she actually knew some of the people that buildings on campus are named after.  As I got older, I realized what a truly good person she was.  She was a good christian woman to the core.  So many people in my life have claimed that but she didn't really have to try to claim that because it was evident in how she lived her life.  She was always sweet to me and wanted to hear how I was.  Even in her declining health, she would squeeze my hand and tell me how good it was to see me and that I must come again to see her soon.  

Here she was last summer celebrating her 95th birthday with friends and family!
Here I am with Aunt Marian and Aunt Velma on the 4th of July last year.
Aunt Velma passed away in her sleep on May 7th at age 95. Although, it's sad that she's no longer here with us and she'll never squeeze my hand again, I feel really lucky that I got to know her and that I can always treasure those moments I got to spend with my GREAT Aunt. Because she was great, indeed. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Flat Stan's Oneonta Adventures

Flat Stanley came to visit me for about a week from my friend Allison's son.  I was really excited to show him around town and have him do some fun activities. 

Flat Stan arrives.  He was pretty tired because he came fromVegas.
He rested for a bit and then we both tried some bubble tea for the first time. 
 We played with a guiding eyes for the blind puppy in training, Katie.  Isn't she cute?
 Stan joined us for a dinner at Friendly's.  Here he is with Jill.  (They made friends)
 He clowned around with the "interesting" art at Friendly's.
 He attended a Student Senate meeting.  These are the student government leaders at Hartwick.  They make lots of decisions about things on campus.
 He wanted a group shot with some of the senators.
 He also attended an All Greek Council meeting. These are representatives from all of our Fraternities/Sororities on campus. 
 He attended an Etiquette Dinner for seniors.  At this dinner, we learned about proper etiquette to use when dining with business associates. Stanley learned a lot! Ask him what to do with your napkin when you use the restroom.
 He was the only male in attendance at the Royal Sleepover at Club Chestnut (or Castle Chestnut if you prefer). Here he is getting ready to get some sleep before the wedding with Sara and Jill.
Here he is getting into the spirit by posing with the Duke and Dutchess!
 He hung out with Gillian to watch some of the wedding, too.
We rested after the wedding but then the rest of the weekend, was BUSY.  Oneonta and Hartwick (the two colleges in town) host a big concert in the park called OH Fest.  Here he is dancing with Jill to the Michael Jackson tribute band!

 Enjoying the crowd and fun before the main act:  Pitbull!
 After the concert, we enjoyed some Sal's pizza--my favorite pizza in town!
 We woke up early the next day to go over to Oneonta State.  Here he is posing with the building that I used to work in and the building that my friend Allison was an RA in.  Good ol' Tobey Hall!
 And for good measure he wanted to take a picture with the little flag on the lamp post.
 The weather was so nice that we went for a hike up to Tablerock.  Stanley LOVED the view!
 He wanted to pose by the Strawberry Field sign.
 Another view from our walk.  This is with Oneonta State in the background.
 Stan and I hanging out!
 Stanley was excited to hang out with a sorority at the Greek neighborhood picnic.  Here he is with the ladies of Gamma Phi Delta.
 Stanley visited the vet with Jill's dog, Cedar.  I think Stan may be considering a career as a veterinarian.
Before we knew it, our time together was over.  Here he was saying goodbye to Club Chestnut before he traveled back home.
Thanks for visiting, Stan!  I hope you had fun in O-town!