Friday, October 31, 2008
Most of us have grown up trick or treating- knocking on a door, it opens and we all yell,
""TRICK OR TREAT!!!"
Until my parents and sisters moved to Utah I thought that was what everyone did. I was wrong. I found out that in more rural parts of Utah, families would gather at their local ward (church) parking lot, open the trunks of their Halloween decorated cars/trucks and go from vehicle to vehicle trunk or treating. Now, I thought this was a Utah/Mormon thing. Nope. Apparently this happens in different regions of our country, mostly rural. All for different reasons. Some for pure logistics, lots of ground for kids to cover going from one 100 acre farm to another, trunk or treating makes it easier! Others have adopted the practice for safety reasons, offering a more controlled trunk or treating environment.
Do they do this in your area?
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Every seven years or so (I think leap year might screw it up) Halloween falls on a Friday.
Seems great, no work or school the next day... perfect right? WRONG!!!
Talk about pressure!
There is no excuses to end the candy frenzy or the endless trick or treating. The teens have parties they HAVE to go to and the absolute worst? So do we. I am not creative or clever. it is tremendous pressure and with terrible anxiety that I even think about Halloween costumes for myself and my husband. And then there are the anti-Halloween parties, children not included. We have been invited to two fun parties. One is a pot luck with all our old neighborhood friends (empty nesters) and the other is another group of EN's at a wine tasting. Hmmm sounds good. But we aren't there yet. We still have younger kids, that would happen when your age range of kids is 24-12!! I don't think I want to be there yet anyway. Our younger two still want to be with us. Those of you with older kids (possible EN'S) understand and those of you with little ones? Well it sounds cliche, but it does go so fast-enjoy your children while you can :)
Anyway, we have decided to go to a big party that does include children, costumes optional.
I think you know what my option will be!
I remember, while in college, being asked, "So, where are you from?" It was a hard question to answer. I was going to school in Florida, (hardly anyone was actually, originally from that state!) My parents and three sisters had just moved to Indiana as my Dad was transferred with his job. My other sister was living in New Jersey and going to college there. So, this is what I would say:
I was born in Seattle. My parents were born there too. Both sets of grandparents had moved there in the 1930's for opportunities. My mother is one of eight and my dad is one of four, so all those aunts, uncles, and 28 cousins still live in western states.
My dad was transferred to New York when I was in 5th grade. That was tough. We left all that family and moved across the country before the days of casual plane trips. This was also before the days of media influence. By that I mean, kids/teens did not dress the same all over the country like they do now (uggs, abercrombie, messy buns,) So, let's just say... I was wearing bell bottoms and maxi dresses and everyone, I mean everyone in New Jersey was wearing straight legged jeans and mini skirts! I stuck out like a sore thumb. My accent was also a dead give away.
Before long it seemed as though we had always lived in NJ. I went off to college in Florida and then my Dad was transferred, in three years, to Indiana, then Michigan, Pennsylvania, and finally to Utah where they have lived for 27 years. My three sisters went to four different high schools! But they definitely think of themselves as Utahans. My other sister and I stayed in NJ. We are certainly east coast, but I feel like a northwest girl and my heart will always have a place in Utah. So needless to say, just like in college, I am conflicted.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Here in the Northeast we are having a very rainy, chilly, stormy day. My paddle match was canceled, (Boo, Hiss) and it looks like the soccer games will be canceled too.
So, you would think I would be productive... hmmm. Not. Really.
I am online looking at a manufacturer that I have bought themed umbrellas from in the past, specifically equestrian and ballet, which I carry on my web site. Now I am debating carrying the umbrellas shown above. So, this incessant rain was inspirational at the very least.
What do you think of the designs shown?
Monday, October 27, 2008
I know, I know. Gross. But believe it or not, these items are the TOP sellers in the Lacrosse, Crew, and Volleyball world. At the tournament I was just at the girls were lining up to buy anything cheeta, leopard, or tiger in bras or compression shorts! I do not sell these products but was amazed that my own daughters were coveting these items.
Trust me. Your daughters play lacrosse? They want these.
First, I hope these tips are helpful. Second, I hope you let me know if they are:)
Anyway, this week I have some really helpful info.
This is how I score great tickets at great prices and I must let you know that my second son has done an internship for a big NYC ticket broker the last two summers... and they do this too.
Go to www.broadwaybox.com. It is amazing. The pictures above are of my daughter, niece, and stars from Hairspray. I was able to get the tickets the night before, fifth row, for $60. EACH!
My son and I saw Mary Poppins, seventh row center, for the same price ($60) with tickets purchased a few days before.
And, another tip. If the weather permits, go to the stage door of the theater. The stars come out and sign autographs, take pics and socialize. Not all do this, but a good many do. My niece, who was visiting from Utah, was thrilled.
By the way, Ashley Parker Angel and Aubrey O'Day were awesome to the girls. Props to them!
It is a new day, a fresh start. Whew! Even if I do feel as though I have been hit by a truck ...
Rachel and I set up for the tournament at 5:45 am in the dark. And cold. But of course by noon it was a beautiful sunny, warm autumn day. The tournament was held at Mount Saint Mary's.
What a beautiful college! I was unable to take pictures as I had forgotten my camera. We decided against putting up my PINK tent and unfortunately Rachel is now a wee bit sunburned. All was good and I did make the desired amount of $$'s. I also met a lot of great people, have two new wholesale accounts and a couple of new customers on my website.
What more can I ask for?
Saturday, October 25, 2008
I'm off to Lacrosse tourney. Four hours away. I hope its worth it.
Another interesting day so far. My husband and I went down to my storeroom to start getting merch. to bring to the tournament and noticed a puddle...HUGE leak in the boiler. Of course we have a carpeted basement and of course a good amount of the sports greeting cards, gift wrap and posters that my company produces are stored down there! ARGGGH!! We have spent the last few hours frantically getting all items off the ground. We were able to save 98% of the merch. Now we are waiting for the plumber (not, Joe!) and insurance to call. Meanwhile I still have to load my truck and leave by 4pm.
I hope I sell a lot.
Friday, October 24, 2008
I am so lucky. My niece, Rachel, has agreed to come to Maryland and help me with the tournament. She is a go-getter and I am thrilled to have her help me. I don't have to prompt or remind her to help the customers, pick up or tidy the selling area- she just does it.
She has initiative and I really think that is something you are born with as she has always been this way.
Plus, she is great company and we have a 4 1/2 hour drive.
Because I will be a vendor at a lacrosse event this weekend I anticipate this item to be a big seller for me. I have 16 inch cord in 8 different colors and the lax stick is sterling. The girls love to layer it with other necklaces. Moms like to use as a team/captain/coach gift with the cord being the team color. It is also popular as a stocking stuffer/secret santa gift.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Well, what a morning.
I was about to enter the Lincoln Tunnel when I realized my phone was vibrating ( forgot to put the ringer back on after a match) I looked at my phone and saw that there were 8 CALLS from my husband!!! My heart went cold. I knew something was wrong. Of course there wasn't reception in the tunnel and I was freaking out, ( its a very long tunnel)
Finally I was able to reach him and slowly ( too slowly) he began to tell me what had happened.
He had brought my youngest to school in our Pathfinder, parked, and as my son was leaving went to put his computer bag in the trunk. The door of the trunk is very heavy and he used both hands to slam it shut. Unbeknown to him, my son had come back to say goodbye and the trunk slammed down on his head!! My husband knew right away that this was serious, lots of blood and the force he had used closing the trunk. He rushed him to a clinic and as they were at the clinic my son threw up twice and was dizzy. They then rushed to the Emergency Room.
This is when I caught up with my husband. So at that point, we knew my son would need stitches and a Cat Scan. My husband said he had it under control. I said I would stay and finish my business and then meet him at the hospital. I think I was in shock. I went to two of my vendors and then realized, "I've got to get out of here!!" I needed to be with my son and my husband, who was riddled with guilt. So, I proceeded to rush out of the city. Luckily we live about 30 minutes away and I made it to the hospital in no time.
...just as my son was skipping out the Emergency Room door, smiling broadly. I see my husband looking like he had been hit by a truck, yet relieved at the same time.
Kevin is fine, three stitches, slight concussion, no sports for a week. No skull fracture.
My husband, not so fine. I think he will need a few drinks when he gets home tonight!
I have an event down in Maryland this weekend, the last lacrosse tournament of my selling season. I am well stocked with scout bags, sterling and pearl studs, hair bands, cell charms, peace sign anything, baby bows, and other preppy essentials, but I need some preppy, trendy items to create some excitement!
So, I am off to NYC down to the wholesale district and on to some favorite showrooms. One new favorite are the thin, leather friendship bands, we call them beach bracelets. You know, the girls wear them two, three or more at a time? I try to get them in uber preppy colors and they sell like wildfire. I need to find a new item that creates that time of reaction, especially in this economy!
I'll let you know what i find when I get back...
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
I am always cold. In the mall, movie theaters, restaurants, on planes, you name it. I have taken to bringing a pashmina wherever I go. I use them as a shawl, scarf or lap blanket year round (thanks to overzealous air conditioning.) So at this time of year I like to stock up on new colors.
I like the colors above and may also add a light blue to the bunch. You need to know that I am not buying real pashmina, oh no! I go into the city and buy them at $10 each. This way I am not freaking out if my daughter borrows one for homecoming and leaves it at her friend's or if while using it as a lap blanket I drop some soup. They are economical, practical, and pretty.
I'm feeling a bit melancholy tonight.
It has been almost a year since my oldest son moved into his own apartment in NYC and I think it has finally hit me that we may never live under the same roof again... That seems so strange and unimaginable-but true. And right. I know I should be happy that he is independent and I am, sorta. I miss him and his childhood.
Thanks to Ina J. Offret, I have been thinking of soup for a week now, so I decided to drag out the crock-pot. I love my crock-pot/slow-cooker. Its like having a Mom! I come home after a day of errands, tennis, after school activities and the whole house smells so good and I honestly catch myself thinking, "I wonder what she made?" I add a salad and a crusty loaf of bread and we have (I think) the perfect meal.
Now, there is a downside. I have to remember to do this ten to twelve hours in advance-not always easy for me. But I remembered this morning, Hooray!
So, we will be having White bean and kielbasa soup tonight!
here is the recipe taken from my slow cooker cookbook:
White Bean(cannelli) and Turkey Kielbasa Soup
1 16ounce pack of dried beans, sorted and rinsed
1 lb of Kielbasa, cut into 1/4 inch slices
2 med. carrots cut into 1/4 inch slices
2 stalks of celery cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 large onion finely chopped
2 garlic cloves finely chopped
7 cups of water
salt and pepper to taste ( the kielbasa has enough salt for me)
1 14 1/2 ounce can of diced tomatoes, undrained
Mix all ingredients except tomatoes in slow cooker
cover and cook on high for 10-12 hours until beans are tender
stir in tomatoes
cover and cook on high for another 15 minutes
let me know if you try this and what you think!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
To get this "hair raising" look it is very simple. Get an empty water bottle, hold it on the top of your head and then bring all you hair up around the bottle and secure with a pony tail holder. Obviously the longer the hair- the better, sorry boys!
Becky has used this "look" for Halloween and Crazy Hair Day at school many, many, times.
people can never figure it out and it is so easy. let me know if you try it!
Pastis is one of my favorite casual restaurants in NYC. It is a french bistro right in the middle of the meatpacking district. The food is good, more peasant fare than fancy, the prices are not bad and the location is great as it is a great neighborhood to walk around in after your meal. This neighborhood can be VERY touristy, especially on the weekends. It is a great area for people watching-always see a celebrity or two :)
As for Pastis, Here are the reasons I love it:
You don't have to get dressed up.
They are open 8am -3am.
Their french fries are to die for!
The wait staff is actually very nice.
Sometimes I find parking on the street.
The bathrooms are cool.
I feel as though I am in Paris, without the incessant smoking.
9 9th Ave.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Last night was Homecoming. My daughter was so excited and rushed from her county soccer game into the shower and was dressed and beautified in 45 minutes, just in time to go to her Bff's for pictures. It was a real Freshman girl (read 14 year-old) pre-party. No boys, girls still wearing braces, gangly, adorable, lovely girls.
The birthday festival continues! First, it was the family party on the exact day of birth, then it was the extended family party, and now it is the "friend" party. Whew!
This year we are revisiting The..Forest...of....Fear. SCARY!!!! It is truly well done, almost Disney World caliber. Last year my husband, daughter, and Kevin went with four of Kev's friends. I think I almost died laughing at my husband and daughter. They led our group through the massive haunted house and as each character popped out or acted out a scene, they reacted so dramatically- it was hysterical. This year we are bringing eight ghouls with us, oops! I mean eight boys!
Friday, October 17, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
I guess it is apparent that I am going through some pictures today! I love this photo I shot of my youngest skipping stones on Lake MacDonald in Glacier Park, Montana. If you look closely you can see that the stone skipped five times. We had a family reunion while staying on Flathead lake. The fires were very bad and you can see in this photo what appears to be mist is actually smoke. I love the contrast of how clear the water is and how blurry the sky and mountains are.
I love this random photo I took of my niece. We were down at the shore staying in an old victorian on Long Beach Island. I caught her unaware. To me, this photo seems like it could be out of To Kill a Mockingbird or any story set in New Orleans. It has that feel- to me.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
the faculty or phenomenon of finding valuable or agreeable things not sought for
I was at the New York gift show last month looking for new products for my web site and when I vend on the road. As I was going down the aisles looking for sports related items two nice ladies stopped me and offered me a sample of their skin product. I politely declined telling them that I didn't sell beauty items and not to waste their samples on me. They were so nice and instead of being discouraged, insisted I take some anyway. I did, threw it in my purse and went on my way. A couple of week later I noticed it in my bag after a paddle game, I realized it was hand sanitizer and decided to try it. It was great! It smelled so good and didn't dry out my hands. I assumed it was done and was about to throw it out, but threw it in my bag again.
Later on I was cleaning out my bag and realized there was still product-read the package and found that there was 10 applications in each little pack! I started thinking... maybe this product was sports related. Maybe it would be a perfect item to have in a gym, tennis, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, ( you get the picture) bag! I went to the web site and was even more jazzed.
PS, I now sell Jao on the road and hope to have it on my web site as a "Must Have" for any sport's bag! Now that's serendipity!
This cute little girl, with the full head of beautiful curly hair, is my niece. I LOVE her hair. I think it makes her unique and special. Everyone always remarks on how beautiful it is.
Now here is the irony,
I have the EXACT same hair!
And of course, I have always hated it. It didn't help growing up during the Brady Bunch years when everyone aspired to have stick, straight, Jan Brady hair.
And it didn't help that I had four sisters with straight hair. Worst of all, my Mom actually gave me a pixie cut (some people will remember what that is ) and as soon as I hit humidity I had a pixie afro- not a pretty picture.
These days I am mostly self accepting. I do have it blown out occasionally and feel pretty good when I do, but for the most part I let my hair stay curly. When I think back to my teenage years and the angst I had regarding my hair, how the weather dictated my moods depending on how it would affect my hair... well it seems so silly, now.
I hope my little niece continues to get the positive feedback regarding her hair and that she feels good about what God has given her... Although I know there will always be teenage angst regarding something!
Monday, October 13, 2008
Because I LOVE New York City and am in there for business each week and I realize most
bloggers seem to be from the South or Chicago:) I think I will do a weekly NYC recommend.
So, this week... Coffee!
If you are in the city, ( in the city is how the outer suburbs refer to NYC) and you want a cup of joe to go- walk a couple of blocks and save yourself a buck or two. Times Square and a 10 block radius? Expect to pay $2-$4 (Starbucks) for a cup. Outside of the tourist zone?
.85 to $1.00 for a cup. Look for diners or true coffee shops where working people or residents go. Better yet, take a seat and soak up the local flavor, (read accents) and rest before you head up to Museum Mile or down to Soho.
Is there anything like the daughters of sisters? You know, that matriarchal line...
These two pictured above are my daughter and my sister's daughter. They are cousins who may as well be sisters, except they never fight. They are three months apart, went to preschool together, took dance and made their first communion together. They have always been in each other's life and I think they always will.
Ok, I know I have posted about these bags before- I LOVE them. I also sell them, a lot of them. I would have to say they were my biggest seller this summer. Now I am crazy for their baguette bag shown above. It comes in 16 designs and is PERFECT for groceries as it has a flat bottom. ( Does not topple over like my Whole Food's and Trader Joe's bags.) It comes with a short handle and a long handle and is made of poly fiber- indestructible. Also, weighs next to nothing.
The best part?
The price- $20.
I hope to have these on my retail site when it debuts in February, otherwise email me and I
can put in an order for you.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
I miss my girl. This is her roster pic. She was just home for fall break and before we knew it she was back at school. Today her team is at a tournament outside Philadelphia and I have to miss it. My husband won the coin toss and set off to watch the girl and her team play Cal/Berkley and Drexel. I get to watch her sis play in the county soccer tournament, drive her to lax practice after and keep the little brother occupied...
I think I may have to sneak in some paddle,. Go Pards!
This bracelet is very "Angela Moore-ish." It is a tennis themed bracelet made of painted wooden beads on a strong elastic-stretchy, fitting most wrists. I sell it on my web site, wholesale and retail. it is very popular as a partner, team, or tournament gift. I sell to many Country Club pro shops who say their members love it and I think you can see why.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
I will always be a Tretorn girl. They are clean cut, a true classic. Its funny, I could never play a sport in them as they don't have the support of cushion I need. But in the old days- they were my favorite tennis shoe. These days, for me, they are perfect for around town or weekend errands. The price is right too as they range between $45 and $50. Not bad.
Friday, October 10, 2008
Title Nine and Athleta are my two favorite online/ catalog companies to order from, when I am not grabbing sportswear from TJ Maxx or Sports Authority. They have beautiful, unique, quality merchandise for all my favorite sports and activities. I'm talking, Yoga, running, skiing, paddle, and tennis. A lot of their clothing are perfect Mom clothes. Think stretchy, Lycra skirts with attached bike shorts, perfect for bending and picking up kids, toys, etc and not worrying if everyone sees your undies! Great stretchy dresses for Moms on the move.
Plus, I actually feel put together and somewhat cool when I wear their clothing as they are up to date with colors and textures but still made to stand up to my fav sports.
check them out and please let me know what you think!