Thursday, April 28, 2011

Thankful Thursday

And for the traditionalist… Thankful Thursday.  Short list, big things.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Thankful…. Wednesday?

Because I was suffering from post-vacay blues and needed to cheer myself up…

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and the more I wrote, the happier I got….

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so I just kept going!

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And what do you know?  Ok, so I still miss vacation.  But it definitely improved my mood.  As always.

Sunday, April 24, 2011


Snuggly pup, glass of wine, messy coffee table.  Yup, looks like Sunday evening.


Happy Easter


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Social Media


I love how technology brings people together.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Pinball Wizard

My family has been going to Surfside/Garden City since my brother was a baby, so the area is packed full of nostalgia for me.  When Katie and I were first old enough to go to the “Pavilion” by ourselves, it was a Big Deal.  The Pavilion is at the pier, and it includes an arcade, a small shop where you can buy bait and fishing gear, a Wings where you can purchase yourself a super cool shark tooth necklace (5th grade: check) and/or air brushed t-shirt (3rd grade: check), and a little diner that still sells coffee for less than a dollar and the best darn corn dog you’ve ever had.  The last time I had made the 0.25 walk down to the Pavilion was probably my senior year of high school, when I had brought 6 girl friends down on our Spring Break.  We were goody-goodies and not the rule breaking type, and certainly didn’t attempt to sneak out and bar hop in Myrtle… so the Pavilion was the place to be to “get away from it all.”  (“It all” of course being: the grown ups.  Ooooh, stolen moments of teenage independence.)

My little cousins are now 5 years old and 7 years old, the age where the arcade at the Pavilion provides the perfect distraction for that lull when beach time is over and dinner’s not ready. One night, we filled our pockets with tokens and joined them for some fun.



Whenever we came to the Pavilion, Katie and I would be on a mission to win as many tickets as we could to turn in for cool prizes: whoopie cushions, fake tattoos, shark tooth necklaces, etc.  (I’m telling you, those necklaces were a HOT commodity.)  I’m not particularly good at games of skill & chance, so it was always a little stressful trying to accumulate those darn tickets. 




Us grown up kids went at Skeeball and Racecar Driver and Wheel of Fortune like we ain’t ever seen them before in our lives.  It was so much more fun playing without a “mission.”  And to boot, I scored my best score on Skeeball AND won 100 tickets on one of those slam the button on the right colored lights games. 


And I came in last on the racecar driver!!!!  Ok, check, I still suck at games of skill. 


But the absolute best prize of all?  When the three of us pooled our tickets together, split them in half and handed one thick pile to a 5 year old and the other to the 7 year old.  Amelia, my 7 year old cousin, looked at me with wide, amazed eyes and just whispered an awed "thank you.”  Mae, my 5 year old cousin, took the tickets shyly and then promptly came back and dispensed the Twizzlers that she “bought” with her earnings to share with the rest of us.


That? Was better than getting my high score on Skeeball any day.


Tuesday, April 19, 2011


My favorite beach tradition is clam night.  It usually happens on the first night of beach week, but we had staggered arrivals this week and it’s a must that all be present.  My dad mans the grill – usually with a few helpers who have figured out standing near the grill means first dibs.  My mom usually gets stuck carrying the hot clams up to the those of us who are CLAMORING to eat them (see what I did there?)  Before you feel sorry for my mom, she describes eating clams as chewing rubber bands… so I doubt she laments her job too much.  It’s a free for all of forks stabbing, butter dipping and clam slurping.  And I love it.


Even the little ones get in on the action.



Manning the grill.




Claffeys clammin’.

I am such a sucker for traditions.

Monday, April 18, 2011



Almost as great as mornings at the beach are nights at the beach.  Tonight’s moonrise was spectacular. 

Sunday, April 17, 2011



Mornings at the beach are my absolute favorite time of day & place on Earth, hands down.  I wake early, with the sun streaming in and the sound of the ocean nudging me from sleep.  I head downstairs to find my Mom has already made coffee.  I pour my cup and stand on the porch for a minute, taking in the quiet.  Life feels slow and easy.  I wish I could capture those moments for the other 51 weeks of the year.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Date Night

We kicked off our beach week with a date night to the House of Blues to see Toad the Wet Sprocket.  It was the perfect start to our vacay – something Matt and I had been looking forward to for months.  The last couple months Matt’s been working tons of shifts – I think he had 11 night shifts in a row in the PICU at one point.  This concert had been a major “carrot” getting us through the end of winter here.


The HOB was a great venue (we did the upstairs seating, rather than standing room only downstairs) and TTWS put on an awesome show.  Hard to believe the first time I heard them was in 1991 when my Dad bought “Fear.”  20 years later, they still rock.  This is their most well-known song, Walk on the Ocean.  It was their encore.  (Fast forward to 1:00 minute, the first minute was just teaser.)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dear Mom

Dear Mom,

I am sorry for every sock I left on the floor.

Every sneaker kicked off at the door.

Every notebook of paper sprawled and neglected on the kitchen table.

Every half-drank soda left on a side table.

Every time I didn’t appreciate all you did to keep our house from looking like a tornado spun through it, daily.


Every week Matt and I scratch our heads and wonder who the people are who came through our house and trashed it.

Every few days, we roll up our sleeves and put it back together and breathe a collective sigh of relief and say “There! Now let’s try really hard to keep it this way.”


Every few days…

(Seriously, anyone got any tricks for keeping your house put together during a busy week?  Jamie Forsey, I’m looking at you.)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Thankful Tuesday

Thought I’d shake things up a little bit around here with a Tuesday post.  Eh?

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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Weekends Are For…


Coffee.  Catching up on reading.  Staying in your robe until noon.


Vino.  My new fave: Trader Joe’s Zin.



Beauty routines.  (Gleeked Out & Champagne Blonde*, respectively.)

*Sadly, I am not certain this color did a thing except cover some roots.  But then again, it’s not orange and for this, I am grateful.


Napping on clean sheets.


Coupon clipping.

How was your weekend?

Friday, April 8, 2011

My Best Friend’s Baby





Nobody has ever measured, not even poets, how much the heart can hold.  ~ Zelda Fitzgerald


Emily & Claire, 3 months old

Thursday, April 7, 2011

A Good Day

I love my extra day off.  Sometimes it is a day for productivity, sometimes it allows me to take a quick road trip, sometimes I just schlep around for fun and sometimes it is all of those things rolled into one.

Today I started my day by dropping in on the Starbucks near Buddy’s daycare for some oatmeal and a “dirty chai” (my new favorite: chai latte w/ a shot of espresso).  When I checked in on Foursquare I was told the mayor was “in the house.”  I love me social media.  I got a chance to sit and share some good bean and even better conversation with Teddy Burriss, someone I had previously only conversed with on Twitter, and started off the day on such a positive, friendly note.

I hit the road and headed for Raleigh to spend the morning with Emily, and take some pictures of her 3-month old Claire.  The last time I was in Raleigh, a few weeks after Claire was born, I had a terrible cold and had to admire Claire from afar.  How many seconds was in the house before I asked to snuggle her this time? Hmm, maybe 30?

Ok, that’s not totally true… she was napping when I got there, so her momma and I shared a delicious meal of Chick-Fil-A and caught up on life.  I love my girlfriends.  Spending time with them, whether it is one-on-one or in a big group together, just fills me such happiness.  It’s been a crazy year for the winos – it’s hard to believe it was a year ago that we were in Sonoma together.  Since then, our get togethers have been centered around big events like Jessie’s wedding, Claire’s birth and Jenny’s birthday.  It was nice to just sit and talk with no agenda – it transported me back to the slow, unhurried days of being college together.  (7 years ago?! Unpossible!!) 

Once Claire woke up, I got to work sticking my camera lens in her face.  She was a little trooper, but she apparently just discovered OMG! FISTS!!! and my goodness, did she want to investigate them.  Emily and I were in a fit of giggles after awhile, trying to get her to look at Emily, smile, look at the camera, smile, PUT THE FISTS DOWN.  The good news is, if you take 295 pictures of someone, you’re bound to get a few good ones. 


It was nice to spend time with these girls and get to see Emily in mom-mode.  Have you ever had one of those moments when you see someone you’ve known forever in a totally different role and it creates this expansive feeling in your mind where you realize that you know just one small piece of this person?  I felt that way whenever I went to my Mom’s classroom with her and saw her in “teacher mode.”  I felt this way watching Em be in mom-mode.  It’s nice to have those glimpses into people’s lives.  Reminds you that as much or for how long you’ve known a person, there’s still so much of them to learn about.


It was hard to say good-bye to my friend, but I wanted to get back to Winston in time to have dinner with Matt since it was his first night home after 2 weeks of working nights in the PICU.  Before I went back though, I made a pit stop at Jubala Village Coffee, a coffee shop in North Raleigh that a friend of a friend recently opened.  Raleigh people: go visit!  (It’s in Lafayette Village, off Falls of Neuse Rd.)  It’s a gorgeous place… open, airy, reclaimed wood constructed bar and smooth, strong coffees.  Well here, this person did a better job reviewing it… I don’t know why I didn’t get my camera out, since I had it from earlier shoot!  Just means I have to go back.  I hope they do well, and I’m super excited to hear they plan to include a food menu with local and organic food. 


Lafayette Village in Raleigh… can I just pretend I’m in Italy, please?

Next location in Winston?  I hope so.

I got home in time to cook dinner, and it was nice out so we had one of our first meals al fresco.  One of the things that sold us on our house was the back deck and we have definitely made good use of that.  We try to get as many meals outside as we can between now and when the humidity kicks in!  It was nice to have Matt home, as the last few weeks we’ve literally been saying hi on the garage steps as he comes home from his night shift and I headed out to work.  (Buddy is perfectly happy about this arrangement however: sleeps in bed with me all night, goes for a morning walk, and then sleeps in bed all day with Matt.  Doggy heaven.)  His humans, however, much prefer to get to hang out with one another from time to time.


All in all, a good day in this happy little life of mine.  It’s not a thankful Thursday list, but it’s pretty darn close.