Chew On This

Philly or bust!!! We flew up to Philadelphia for this holiday weekend. Our trip was inspired by an itch to visit a few college chums and a wedding we couldn't miss in Delaware. For our first day, we visited Chestnut Hill. Such a quaint, lovely area:
We lunched at Cake, which was divine, followed by stroll through Chestnut Hill. We window shopped and popped into a few places. In this darling little boutique, these stunning necklaces caught my eye:
The shopgirl quickly educated me: these were Chewbeads!!! My dear friend at Lola's Journey To and From recently told me about this line. While these look like glass beads, they are rubber for the purpose of allowing teething babies to chew on them. Isn't that the best idea ever!?! I snatched one up as a pressie: I think it makes the perfect gift because mom and baby both enjoy it!!! I would definitely wear these beyond the teething years. Isn't this the chicest chew toy ever!?! Xoxo-BLC


Plan to Sip in Style {G-I-V-E-A-W-A-Y}

It's time for a GIVEAWAY on TCSK!!! Many thanks to Lifeguard Press for graciously
co-hosting this fabulous giveaway. One lucky TCSK reader will win ...
... the Lilly Pulitzer pocket agenda in navy bloomers and a pair of Lilly Pulitzer wine glasses!!!
This will make planning to sip in style that much easier, don't you agree!?!
To win, simply leave a comment below!!! No blog? No problem: just leave your email addy. For extra entries, like Lifeguard Press on Facebook, follow Lifeguard Press on Twitter, and tweet/blog/facebook about this giveaway. You must leave an extra comment for each extra entry. The winner will be picked via random.org on September 8th, 2011. Until then, many thanks for faithfully reading TCSK and a BIG thanks to Lifeguard Press for their generosity!!! Fingers crossed you win. Xoxo-BLC


Pop Art + Shift Frocks = Lisa Perry

Move over Lilly Pulitzer, there is another LP on the block: Lisa Perry!!! I ♥ this LP too.
I first discovered her line from watching the Today Show. Ann loves LP and wears it well.
Lisa Perry's line won my heart due to her use of colors and the basic cuts. Her love of pop art spills over into her fashion and makes her line FUN. A healthy dose of color is good for the soul.
Shift frocks are the most chic, comfy, and timeless design. One could never have too many!!! Lisa Perry makes killer shift dresses, a fab minnie line (shown in green/pink and pink/red above), and gorgie accessories. Off to add a Lisa Perry frock to my wishlist!!! Xoxo-BLC
I spied ...
the most
of Lisa Perry shifts at Meli & Angi!!! :)


Happy Birthday ...

I hope this is his BEST year yet
that he loves every minute of it.
Let someone else do the carry your load today ...
like holding up the Tower of Pisa.
Enjoy YOUR day
eat cake too!!!
I ♥ you and ...


Farewell-Engagement-Birthday SOIREE

Ale and I attended a ...
farewell-going-away-party + mini-engagement-party + birthday-bash-for-the-bride-to-be
for two of my favorite law school friends. 
From L to R: moi, the bride-to-be, and another law school chum. I am going to miss the bride-to-be and groom-to-be, but I expect Beantown Prepster to take good care of 'em while they are across the pond!!!
I might have to pop over for a visit too. :) Xoxo-BLC


I'm in stitches!!!

I am in stitches over these Smathers & Branson needlepoint belts!!! Guess who agrees with me!?! My husband!!! From Smathers & Branson: "Each 100% hand-stitched belt is carefully made with the finest materials from around the world. The threads are spun and dyed in Europe, the full grain-leather is tanned in Asia, and the buckles were carefully selected in the USA."
  "Our vibrant colors and whimsical design capture the simple pleasures of living and will brighten any pair of pants and shorts. Wear your belt not just to class or the office, but also while on the golf course, at your local watering hole, or whiling away a summer day with family and friends." Smathers & Branson has an ah-mazing selection for men, ladies, and children of belts, key fobs, accessories, coasters, wallets, flasks, pet collars, coin purses, headbands, cummerbunds, and, if you just cannot pick, gift certificates.
My husband loves to fish, hunt, and, above all else, Clemson football!!! Thus, I assumed he would pick the fishing flies belt or the shotgun and shell belt or the Clemson belt. But, he surprised me!!! Longtime readers of TCSK know that here I call my husband Ale. So it should be no surprise that he picked the ale needlepoint belt. He has yet to find a beer he doesn't like!!! :) I have yet to find one I do like ...
Among my favorites for is the bowtie belt or the Jolly Roger belt or the Dark 'n Stormy belt for men; the cheetah headband or the coral pattern belt or the monkey coin purse for ladies; and the duck duck goose belt or penguin belt for children. Are you in stitches over these belts too!?! If so, do share: what's your favorite design!?! Xoxo-BLC


Totally Swept Away

I have recently been cheating on my regulars: RedBox, Blockbuster, and iTunes. I am having a love affair with HBO To Go. I have watched documentaries, shows, and movies that I wouldn't normally pick. One of those:
Swept Away. I almost stopped watching it five minutes in because the cursing is near unbearable and Madonna's character is 100% insufferable. Yet, I was totally sucked in, swept away, and unable to stop. The movie is shot somewhere between the Italy and Greek coastlines. The scenery alone is absolutely breathtaking and worth the watch. Madonna is my new thinspiration: her 40-something-bod is sick. Half of the movie is in subtitles and the other half English. The storeline totally stole my ♥!!! And so, Swept Away swept me away. Xoxo-BLC


TCSK Facelifts

Bless TCSK's little ♥, she has had many facelifts!!! From her oldest and next oldest ...

... to her summertime glow ...
... to her latest and greatest yet!!! I also switched to just one sidebar on the right. What do you think!?!

As her surgeon, I have already picked out her next facelift too!!! Hint, hint: think a little holiday fun. Cheers to keeping a fresh face and aging gracefully. Xoxo-BLC


Diapers and Wipes

I've mentioned this before, but it bears repeating: we belong to an ah-mazing church and Sunday School class. It is such a blessing in our lives and to our marriage. If we meet in real life, I am going to invite you to my church and my Sunday School and my Bible Study. The more the merrier!!!
Yesterday, our Sunday School hosted a baby shower for two very special mamas-to-be!!! We showered them with love, prayers, a delish spread, and pressies. Everyone brought the exact same gift: diapers and wipes. I gifted both mamas the denim diapers --- I just think they are the cutest, hippest, funnest diapers around. If I had a minnie, I am certain their uniform would be denim diapers and a polo (with a popped collar of course). My prayers continue for these mamas for happy, healthy, easy, and fun pregnancies!!! Xoxo-BLC


Bye-Bye Beach ...

I am going to miss this view of crystal-blue, Caribbean-like agua ...
toes stuck in the sand, a good book in hand,
and leisurely beachside strolls!!! Bye-bye for now beach ... until next time.



Sun-kissed: (adj.) a few days off work, countless hours sun-worshiping,
looong beachside chit-chats with dear friends, well rested souls,
and full hearts!!! Being sun-kissed is one of the best looks that everyone wears well.
Sun-kissed cheers to you and yours. Xoxo-BLC


Making Funnies

This beach trip was filled with loads of funnies ...
Above, look in the background ... do you spy dueling bartenders!?!
My favorite funny line: "You don't mean it. YOU DON'T MEAN IT!!!"
With fun friends and fun times, of course loads of funnies followed.


A Wave or Two for YOU!!!

Since I couldn't bring you a pocketful of sunshine or an umbrella covered cocktail ...
I brought you the ocean instead!!!
Don't forget to keep on summering and enjoy the waves.


Seafood Diets

This has been the summer of seafood diets for me.
Or is it "see-food" diets!?! You know, where you see food and just gobble it up.
Pre-barzam, my seafood diet included strictly goldfish and Swedish fish.
Above, the girls at din-din after our first full beach day.
I am happy to report post-barzam, I am eating real seafood!!!
Seafood just tastes better at the beach, don't you agree!?! Xoxo-BLC

PS: "I wish to fish and find the freshest fish for my dish!!!" ><>


Gone Surfing ...

We hear the surfs up and the waves are h-u-g-e, so we are beach bound!!!
Off to soak up the sun, toes in the sand, a good book in hand, and loads of umbrella covered cocktails.
Sending you and yours a pocketful of sunshine. Until then, hang ten dudes!!! Xoxo-BLC


Happy Birthday to the Duchess!!!

Wishing my favorite Duchess and sister-in-law a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!
Below: the birthday girl and her brother. We spent the day celebrating her and eating delish pink cake:
Hop over to her super cute blog The Duchess and the Duke to wish her a very happy, bright, and full birthday. We had so much fun celebrating her birthday and may this be her best year yet!!! Xoxo-BLC


Showered with Love

I co-hosted a bridal shower with two of my college chums for our favorite bride-to-be!!!
L to R: Lola's Journey To and From, the bride-to-be Skipper, Wren, and moi.
We hosted the shower in Wren's in-laws backyard. It's one of the most gorgeous backdrops!!!
It was so much fun showering the bride-to-be with love ... and lots of pressies!!!
I thought my vintage Lilly shift was cute until Baby Wren joined the party.
She is too precious for words!!! Look at that smile!!!
It was so much fun showering Skipper with lots of loooove.
Cheers to Skipper's love, laughter and happily ever after!!! Xoxo-BLC


Step It Up This School Year

It's back-to-school-time for many!!! I am thrilled to not be heading back to law school, but I still think of each new school year as a fresh start. Back-to-school also means back-to-school-shopping!!! My shopping list usually included a new book bag, shoes, school supplies, and the perfect first-day outfit. And, unfortunately, lots of books. Ha! I thought this was the norm until a family friend told me otherwise. Many children cannot afford back-to-school shopping let alone a proper pair of shoes. Those children attend school in mismatching shoes, ill-fitting shoes, or, worse, no shoes at all. That's why my family friend founded Steppin High in 2008. 
 Steppin High is a non-profit, volunteer run charity that provides children in need with a new pair of shoes and socks. Since 2008, Steppin High put 1444 pairs of shoes and 2888 pairs of socks on York County, South Carolina children. Isn't that amazing!?! Such a small gift that makes such a BIG difference. Payless Shoes joined Steppin High to make a new pair of shoes and socks about $20.00 per child. Isn't that great!?! This year my back-to-school shopping list will only be a donation to Steppin High. Will you join me and add a donation to Steppin High to your back-to-school shopping list too!?! Cheers to stepping it up and starting school on the right foot!!! Xoxo-BLC

PS: Do you live in the greater Charlotte area!?! If so, I encourage you to volunteer your time to Steppin High. Seeing first hand the joy a child experiences when receiving a new pair of shoes must be something else. :)
PSS: Do you have this same need in your area!?! If so, I encourage you to contact Steppin High about starting a similar non-profit charity in your area.


Letters from Granddad

I lost my granddad today. More than five years ago, I was in the fine jewelry department at Nordstrom when my mom slipped and told me my granddad had cancer. It was the preliminary result and we didn't know details, but that didn't stop the waterfall of tears. The shopgirl behind the counter couldn't feed me tissues fast enough. From there on I started writing to my granddad. And he wrote back. He always said: "if you can write well, you can conquer anything." Here is one of this letters to me:
He always told me: "do one thing and do it well." He lived by that motto. As a tenured professor at Duke, he loved teaching, mentoring, and encouraging students. I could read the countless letters from his students spanning decades and decades thanking him for the difference he made in their life. He made an enormous difference in mine. He will always be my hero. My granddad's life was a life well lived. I am blue and miss him more than words. Yet, I am certain of his salvation and find great peace, love, and comfort from God knowing I get to squeeze his neck again in heaven. Until then, I aim to live life well just as he did!!! Xoxo-BLC


Baby Shower + Mocktail

I co-hosted a baby shower for my childhood best friend today (a favorite childhood snapshot of us). I am over the moon thrilled for her!!! She is such an amazing friend and I am beyond certain she will make a fabulous mother.
I am just getting back into the swing of things and as such I managed to forget my camera. Oopsie daisy!!! However, my friend Melissa of The View From Five Foot Two saved the day by taking loads of pictures. Hop over to her blog (click here) and check 'em out. It was sooo much fun catching up with Melissa, showering a favorite friend, and celebrating a new life!!! Mocktail cheers to you and yours. Xoxo-BLC


The Barzam

Oooooooooooommmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmggggggggggggggggggoodness!!! Idunno. Idunno. Idunno. Idunno. Idunno. Idunno. Idunno. Idunno x 100. Ewwwwwwww. Yawwwwwwwn zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. YIKES!!! Wooooooooooof. Uggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Ick, ick, ick, ick, ick, ick etc. Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

Well that about sums up the barzam and my life for the last two months. I cannot thank you enough for your well wishes, words of encouragement, and unfailing support. I am thrilled to report I am still married, my family still loves me, and I still have friends. It's a miracle!!! Many thanks to them and you too for letting me take a hiatus and study like it was in style. Glad to be back to TCSK ... I have missed you much!!! Xoxo-BLC

PS: I gave TCSK a little facelift: what do you think!?! :)