iVoices on iVillage

 

I am a person who frequently gets in her own way. I procrastinate, I dawdle…basically I steal defeat from the jaws of victory on the regular. But when I saw the iVoices on iVillage call, I thought that.is.for.me. and I sent my 150 word in essay in so fast I believe I misspelled my own name.

They asked me for a video anyway.

TOTT took time out to bash around DC with me to film and then stayed up late on the only night he wasn’t staying up late for his conference to edit my audition video. I love him.

Today iVillage announced the iVoices correspondents and in the immortal words of Elle Woods “ME!”

You can see the announcement video here.

I’ve worked for NBC once before…on PASSIONS and that was tons o fun, but this? this will be amazing. What to talk about….issues that affect women. What affects YOU? What doesn’t affect us,right? I’m honored to be chosen, Contessa Brewer, Natalie Morales, Jane Hanson and Kelly Wallace are no slouches and they went through all of the videos settling on 15 of us.

Wow.

I’m really excited about this gig, I hope you’ll stick with me on this journey, this blog has opened worlds for me and I am grateful for it, and for you.

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Savannah Smiles and a what the WHAT????

Savannah Sky

Dear Savannah,

I have been here 24 hours but do you believe in  love at first sight, because baby –  I gotta tell you, I love you.

From the very first glimpse of your dripping trees and your buildings that came right out of Gone With the Wind and Streetcar Named Desire {I know…I know…but the architecture is what I speak of .Related: The Boss does a mean Stanley Kowalski “STELLAAAAAAA” that I am trying to get on video. It’s epic.}

I am certain to leave you a changed woman. This might be because of the heartbreak of leaving a land where everyone says please and thank you or it might be because the three main food groups here are butter, brown sugar, and heaven-sauce.

And bacon. But I’m veg so I just walk on by and get another prailine. {note to all little pink piggies- you are not safe in Savannah!Stay away or you will be slathered with butter, brown sugar and heaven-sauce!} They are going to have roll me home from you Savannah, I won’t fit in the van!

I must say that something about being here in the South is making me ashamed of my nails and hair. Holy personal grooming, Rhett Butler! I am SO  hoping to get a manicure at Spa Bleu suggested to my by our very own Georgia Peach Brynn of Wicked Sweet Tea. Reading her blog makes me ashamed of my hair and nails as well, just for the record.

So Savannah, love is a complicated thing…and I love you. Even if you are thwarting my plan to not live in yoga pants and tank tops with your secret weapon pralines that will ensure I no longer fit into anything that doesn’t feature an elastic waistband, while at the same time destroying any sort of hair/nail ego I might have had to begin with. You’re a complicated mistress, Savannah. I can’t believe you’ve scheduled your big Flea Market for next weekend! Thank you. I’m taking that gesture as a promise ring you’re giving me…I’m certain to bring home many treasures to remember you by!

I can’t wait to see what our ten day whirlwind affair holds for us next. But I’m guessing it involved butter and brown sugar. And heaven-sauce. And that is allright with me.

Love,

Minks

P.S. Whilst poking about in some antiquestores TOTT came across a very interesting Butler, when he asked what it was made of, as it looked a bit like what someone would tether a horse too back in the day, we were informed it was a stockade. Ya know, that held slaveswhile they were whipped. Dear. God. No thank you, I’ve no desire to hang my man’s Brooks Brothers from such an object. I applaud the upclycling idea….just…WHAT THE WHAT????? The lovely woman who owned to the store told us it had been there for ages, as it was quite offensive, and yeah, I’d say offensive is a bit of an understatement. But other than that, Savannah has been perfection; to quote that Yankee Chandler Bing.

Friday Fabulousness! Look out Savannah.

There’s been a whole lot of fabulousness going on around these parts lately. But far and above this week is TOTT. He is fabulous beyond measure. We leave this morning for Savannah and this big old conference of his. Think BlogHer, but for geographers.

And TOTT has basically put it all together on his own. Oh yes, he has had help. His intern Jackie? She rocks my socks. She has stayed late and come in early in order to make this all happen. Is it selfish of me to say I will be SO GLAD when this conference is over? I’ve almost forgotten what he looks like a time or two. He is doing this all because he wants to create a life for our family, and because he has a work ethic like a mad man. He wants to make his company proud, to do a great job and to ensure that everyone has a great time at the conference. TOTT is a producer through and through, whether it is a show or a conference…he is your guy. And he will work himself into the ground to make sure every t is crossed and every i is dotted.

So this week, TOTT is the fabulousness in my life.

{this pic is one of my all time favorites}

What is fabulous in yours?
***Friday Fabulousness is an experiment in recognizing the beauty in our day to day life. This can be ANYTHING! A post you wrote this week that made you happy,something your kid did,  a new purse, a promotion at work! You don’t have to write a specific Friday post to join in! Just link up and link back to this little old blog! I will have a button soon…once this confernce is over, natch.***

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D is for drawing.

In the morning while I wait ever so impatiently for the nectar of the Gods {coffee} to brew, we daw ona foor. That’s Bossanese for draw on the floor.

After lunch we draw downstairs.

In the evening we draw at the dining room table, Perhaps The Boss has scoped out the best light and follows it around like Baby Kitty Mo aka Fender, who yes is still hanging out at the American Dream household. {I lurve him}

Last night as we colored and I was obediently following the edicts my tiny dictator passed down “mommy daw pink!” my Cherub turned to me and said:

“Mommy needa get out.”

“you want out?”

“Otay.”

“one second baby, let me clean you up and you can get out.”

“Mommy, needa get out. Get out. Get oooooooooooooouuuuuuuuuuuuut!”

“Okay Baby you can get out.””

“Need a get out an DANCE!”

Sometimes you just gotta dance.

 

Is there a twelve-step program for Craigslist?

My craigslist/yardsaling obsession continues. I might need an intervention. Or a 12 step program. Or just a storage unit for all the things I want to make. I actually did this a few weeks ago, but I can’t remember if I posted it! I wanted a little step stool to assist The Boss with his hand washing exploits. Enter yardsaling! Scored a wood stepping stool (from Target originally) for $3 and added some wooden numbers from Michaels. I painted these red first then sage green so when I beat them up the red would show through. I wanted it to look like little feet had worn it down and I think it came out great! No idea why the 2 looks crooked in the picture, it’s not I promise!

All I want to do is refinish furniture! I’ve been on the hunt for a dresser since the Paleozoic, and finally one I liked caught TOTT’s eye as well so off my MIL and I went to fetch it. I am CHEAP, and this was 50 bones, so more than I wanted to spend but the Hubs liked it and I wanted a dresser like pirates want booty.

BEFORE{fake-o cherry finish and all}

I stripped the top and then sanded it down. And primed the base. I had to fix a drawer or two and there is one that still doesn’t fit right, I’ve got to figure that out cause hello…annoying! I used a little wood fill on the holes from the hardware- which I saved to use on something else….sometime- and began painting! I love painting. So relaxing! I stained the top a dark walnut because I am a Miss Mustarseed lemming and I really wanted a grey dresser with a dark top. I aged it a bit with a dark glaze but didn’t beat this one up.  Hopefully someday this might go in a dining room. But for now it is housing all my clothes.

ok some of my clothes.

I’m on the hunt for the matching highboy dresser, although I don’t think I’ll do the top of that one dark.

forgive the iphone fauxto. Where, oh where has my camera cord gone? Oh where, oh where can she BE?
AFTER:

some crystal knobs and it’s all done! I am really pleased with it!

Next up…these bad boys are gonna get worked over. I also scored a $30 Thomasille headboard off of Craigslist that I can’t wait to work on. But that will have to wait until after Savannah {you know I’ll be checking out the thrift stores there!}

 

Linking to Miss Mustardseed &  Primitive & Proper Click and prepare to spend the next 4 hours swooning.

perhaps we should change his name to Maestro.

*Disclaimer. harumph. Apparently Friday and Monday’s post took a little vacay to Neverland and not only did they not publish…but they are nowhere to be found. Harumph. They were awesome too. Tragedy that chances are I, in a sleep deprived stupor probably deleted them instead of publishing. Nice. This week I also put my contacts in the case with no solution and left them overnight. Not just once, but twice. It’s good cause it’s not like I’ve been wearing contacts for say, 20 years! Dude. Mama needs a nap, knowwhatimsaying? /end disclaimer.

Being a blogger rocks my socks. Especially when you meet nice people out and about then they email you three months later saying “I was just thinking about The Boss and I think he’d like this…” Such was the case last week when Kathy from the Washington Conservatory of Music sent me that little ditty inviting The Boss to a free music class for toddlers. Oh heck yeah! I knew this was going to be a good time, plus it was at the Glen Echo park location. If you live in the area and haven’t been yet…get your booty in gear peeps! All these crazy awesome photos that Kate Monroe took of us were at Glen Echo. Candy Shoppe? Check! Train caboose? Check!  Childrens theatre? Check! It’s a dream local, but the best part of Glen Echo is clearly the people who work there and take care of the park and it’s attractions. On this trip, we met Burt. But was heading out to lunch, locking up the big wooden door closing in the carosel. (oh yes, didn’t I mention the carousel????) He saw me look wistfully at it and invited me and the kiddo in. Burt should have been chowing down on his bologna sandwhich but insteaaad he gave me the history of the carousel. So lovely. He was great with The Boss encouraging him to touch the horses and pointing out the lions and zebras to him.

It was magical. And it wasn’t unusual. I don’t know what it is about that place…it’s just amazing.

But we were there for music class, and music class was had! Mrs. Maribeth, the teacher, was lovely and after my guy warmed up he had a blast! He was distracted by the recording room though. You see, during our photoshoot in June, The Boss got quite overheated and Kathy invited us in to the air conditioned haven that is the Washington Conservatory. I’m pretty sure Kathy was an angel sent to us, because she cooled that baby down and then we all watched in awe as she opened up a room full of instruments for him to play. But the piece de resistance was the recording room…and once class was over The Boss couldn’t wait to get in there!

Kathy showed The Boss a violin, good timing since WhyMommy had a toy violin at her house and The Boss had been gabbing about it ever since that play date. It was really cool how frustrated he was that his little arms were too short to hold it properly. So he just rocked it out like a guitar.

I think that my kid is a musical genius. We all think our kids are geniuses. We are supposed too! But it was really lovely to have him encouraged by actual musicians! Kathy, Mrs Maribeth and {OMG I’m such a jerk – I’ve forgotten his name and he was SO NICE!} their coworker, were pretty impressed by his musical skills and knowledge. Sir Paul plays the bass you know. If you didn’t know that The Boss will tell you. Repeatedly. Finally, his prayers were answered and Kathy took him into the recording room. And then he blew my mind. First they played for a little while, and then kathy suggested we record a song. I said how about the ABC’s?

She plucked and sang ABCDEFG while The Boss just sat at the piano blinking his big blue eyes at her. Once she stopped, he played (not the correct melody of course he just plucked out some notes and sang) HIJKLMNOP. Kathy:QRSRUV The Boss:WXYZ Kathy Now I know my ABC’s, The Boss: Next time won’t you sing with me.

Kathy and I looked at each other, she said “we were playing a duet! I didn’t know we were plauing a duet.” The fact that he understood the phrasing, how to go back and forth blew.my.mind. Mrs. Maribeth came in and showed him how to run his fingers over the piano “like a worm” and he imitated to the best of his ability. He wants to play so badly, he doesn’t bang on the keys he tries to pick out the melodies.

I’ve no idea where this came from as TOTT and I have trouble carrying a melody in a bucket.

I hope they will continue doing toddler classes as well as kids classes. They genuinely love kids there and encourage them to explore. In a world of ‘NO’ such as our kids live in these days, it is a nice respite to say yes! Go play that instrument! Go sing with those other toddlers!  I’m anxiously awaiting their catalog, I’m pretty sure the kid and I will be taking a class there…not sure what, but something!

Lessons Learned.

{FYI I asessed the sitch first and snapped a pic second}

He has since been released from the stockade and enjoyed a hearty dinner of nacanoni { that’s guac to you and me} and enchiladas. I think he’s forgotten about it already. I however will be telling the harrowing tale of The Boss and the bannister for ages to come.

Et tu, Birthday?

As The Boss says: it’s my Happy Day! As I say: it’s my Random Buy Me Things Day!

When The Boss was a mere 7 weeks old or so and wasn’t The Boss yet but was still Sweet Baby Max, TOTT had to break some bad news to me. I was furiously scrubbing my under eyes with one of them there make up remover pads but the dark mascara circles simply wouldn’t budge. As I complained about the mascara issue, my darling husband put his hand gently on my arm to prevent me from scrubbing myself raw.

Baby, he said, I think that’s just the way your eyes are right now.

He was right. And before you go thinking he was jerkariffic for saying so, he wasn’t. He was as kind as could possibly be when having to tell your postpartum and sleep deprived {vain} wife that those circles were here to stay.

This morning we rolled out of bed, after a little cuddle and boo with The Boss of course and quickly assessed this mornings under eye sitch. Cornflower blue or midnight purple? Just how much concealer were we going to need in order to leave the house and what to distract the toddler with while we spackle it on.

It’s my Random Buy Me Things Day so I am employing the Royal We.

We quickly discovered that dark circles were the least of our Random Buy Me Things Day beauty emergency. The Three Stooges of the self esteem Apocalypse were place this morning.

Dark Circles. Grey hair. Chin hair.

Really? Et tu, Birthday?

I can’t even blame them on my 28 {again} year old-ness. I got my totally cool -read mortifying- Nightmare on Elm Street streak of grey in high school, when everyone was dying their hair anyway so it never bothered me much. I was much more concerned with oh mai gah am i fat?and whatever biblically named blond boy I was obsessed with at the moment.

The chin hair? Well, that’s all The Boss’ doing. He gifted me with his awesome little self, a ruined belly button and one chin hair. But I didn’t have to shave my legs the entire time I was pregnant which was totes convenient since I was roughly the size of Neverland Ranch.

So while I can’t blame them on my Random Buy Me Things Day, I will be celebrating (at naptime) by banishing the greys. Because I’m worth it. {Chin hair is gone at the time of this writing. Chin hair is a bastard who must be destroyed upon sight. He’s also a real wimp so he’s easily dispatched.}

And this evening after a celebratory Mexican dinner and presents with my beloved family I’ll come home and slap on some zit cream then follow it up with wrinkle cream. Because life is unfair, y’all.

It’s also really really great. Here’s to another year!

p.s.happy birthday auntie keek! one more year and we will be the same age!

The Fall makes me want fringe…

Or as we say here in the states; bangs. What? I want to be British, shoot me. Actually don’t please. I’m pretty sure we’re not randomly shooting Brits anymore…even if I do go out and get that red coat I want for winter. Get it? I’d be a red coat? Ah well.. American Revolution humor, your time will come.

Any time the temperature drops I want fringe -err- bangs. The problem is I look terrible with bangs. I rocked em cute when I was wee, but now? I look like a dork. And then I see people who rock em cute current and I am eaten by jealousy. {which is the fall equivelent of being eaten by mosquitos and almost as itchy} Plus I have a really glam cowlick, so the long side wept bang isn’t happening. It’s straight across 3rd grade style or nothing. I look like tales of a 3rd grade dork, which I actually lived…so yeah. The last time I got my bangs cut was right after my birthday last year and my mother in law said “You look twelve!” So maybe bangs are a good plan, cause my birthday is tomorrow and I’m trying to pretend that I am not actually getting older but that it’s random buy me things day. In fact family, I hereby declare September 15th to just be random buy me things day. My sister in law has the same random buy me things day as I do, although she is justthatmuch younger than I am so I guess she’s still having a birthday. Those crazy kids, they’ll celebrate anything. Also she does look cute in bangs. Betrayer. Actually my sister in law (Auntie Keek) is one of those annoying girls who look cute in anything. Hair short, cute. Long, cute. Bangs, cute. No bangs, cute.

I kinda hate her.

In that she’s awesome and I’m glad she’s my sister in law kinda way.

Nope, I don’t look cute in bangs, I do however look cute in lip gloss and scarves and gloves and sweaters. And boots. Size 6.5.

Thanks family.

Who wants to bet I further the ug of my hair au currant by getting bangs anyway?

A little child shall lead us…to Abbey Road.

 

I believe in child led parenting. I let The Boss lead. I mean, I don’t let him lead his ‘motorcycle’ right into traffic or lead himself into some ice cream for dinner…I am the parent. But I do let him lead, TOTT and I happily follow.  From the time he could lift a chubby hand I would ask him what onsie he wanted to wear; the monkey or the football? Teddy bear or guitar. Guitar it was then, and guitar it is now. Letting him choose his clothes is an easy way to let him lead.  I plan to walk the walk if I am blessed with a girl too.  Maybe someday Mumsy will guest post and tell you all about the second grade fight we had when I desired noting more than to wear an ice skating skirted leotard and some cowboy boots to school. She wisely vetoed that one. But she did allow me to wear long ribbons pinned in my bowl cut on the regular because that was just my style y’all. BTDub~ I didn’t ice skate. Not one little skirted leotard had hit the ice at that point in my life. I just owned one and wanted to rock it out at Mountain Shadows/St Andrews. It was red. And so cute. Hmpf. So while I may still remember that I was prevented from expressing myself fashion-wise on that fall day in Boulder….I think we can all agree: well played, Mumsy, well played.

Thankfully The Boss rejects the all-little-boys-must-wear-camo-and-burnt-orange opting for {guess what?} guitar shirts. Would now be a good time to mention that I am ever so grateful that my kid leads me into cool things?

Listen I love the Beatles; greatest band of all time. No question in my mind. But I might not have packed up the car and driven all the way to the National Harbor for Abbey Road on the River  for myself. But for The Boss? Anything. Because if there is one thing The Boss loves it’s The Beatles.

Wait scratch that. If there is one thing The Boss loves it is stealing the show.

No. Scratch that. If there is one thing The Boss loves it is stealing the show at a Beatles Festival.

We weren’t there more than 20 minutes before this 2 year old being that I have been entrusted to care for had charmed the pants off of the director of the festivial, been photographed by the festival photogs and caused great delight to all around as he proclaimed “Accoustic!” and “Bass, like Sir Paul!” and “Dorge’s atar!” at the Gretsh exhibit. He even met Fred Gretsh himself. You might not know who that is {I didn’t} but he made George’s guitars. He is amazing. But when the tribute band The Jukebox took the stage The Boss took to right in front of the stage and performed right along with. Ok, first off a Beatles tribute band from Puerto Rico? Awesome. Second? They were excellent. Third? It was like they had prepared The Boss’ greatest hits. Fourth? They LOVED that this small child was stealing their show.  The Boss bowed after every song and after they finished their set they all came to greet my kid and take pictures. Swoon. I wanted to write all of their mothers a thank you note.

{first video with the new iphone…let’s just say there might have been a learning curve}

Oh it was lovely. To cap off our beautiful day we wandered around the little shops and what’s this? Am I dreaming? No…it’s  The Boss’ favorite flicker playing right on the water.

We met so many wonderful and interesting people. TOTT even found a guitar teacher, so he can be cool for the kid. We can’t wait to go back next year. We kinda have to because The Boss has already broken his mini-Gretsch George Harrison collector guitar. What? You would have bought it for him too. You know you would.

P.S. nothing makes my heart prouder than hearing his little voice trying to sing “all we are saying is give peace a chance” with thousands of other Beatles fans.