Thursday, November 30, 2006

Home Sweet Home

I haven't been in a writing mood this week but I need to get some pics posted before this weekend starts!

Thanksgiving was really nice. I headed back to Detroit and spent some time with the family. My grandmother was upset because I insisted on doing some of the cooking for her so she tried to sabotage my food, hoping nobody would like it! My dad, stepmom and brother always convince me to take a "family photo" on Thanksgiving Day. After adding a few quotes - this photo becomes our annual Christmas card that gets sent out. This year was extra difficult because everyone was in a really silly mood. We must have taken 30 shots before we finally got a good one. Here are some of the pics that didn't make the cut...

One big happy family, huh? My aunt, dad, grandpa and god-father hung out with me in Flint, MI on Friday night at Rickey's show. I think they had a bit too much fun - when the music started up, Papa was the first one in the theatre to jump out of his seat and start dancing! I have never seen my grandpa move so fast. It was hilarious. I would have snapped a photo but it happened so fast and by the time the shot set in he was done.

I met up with the girls on Saturday night and we went to The Bamboo Club. It was OK. The drink I had was called a Geisha Martini and it was really good (see pic)...

The calamari appetizer was one of the best ever. But the dinner I ordered, a chicken and asparagus dish with black bean sauce was mediocre. I ate some of everyone else's food and finished it off with a super rich chocolate cake that I thought I was sharing with Sharon until I realize she had moved the plate directly in front of her and there was only a spoonful of melted ice cream left. Throughout the night I was perplexed about one thing - the waitress was never around to check on us, but Reina's martini glass stayed FULL. I turned on my internal surveillance and the next time she opened her purse I saw this happen...


you can take the girl out of Detroit, but you can never take the Detroit out of the girl...

Before we left the restaurant to go see Deja Vu at the nearby theatre, we had a waiter take our picture - don't we look lovely??? (I won't comment on the movie - that might give it away for people like Sharon who slept through it the first time and now have to see it again!)

Since I've been on this blazer kick all year, I can't help but want more and more of them! This velvet blazer by Burberry caught my eye and held it! Its a perfect cut, classy and elegant but the tortoiseshell button chain keeps it from looking too dressy. At $745 its way out of my price range... but I can just picture myself out on the town. I found it on the website.

Burberry Velvet Blazer 

And this raincoat by Adidas is so cute! Adidas is branching out from basic sportswear in a BIG way. The website is really cool too so be sure to check that out!

Adidas Originals Website

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Back from Denver!

Hey people! I made it back from Denver Sunday. It was a great trip to a beautiful city! I attended the 2006 USGBC Greenbuild Expo at the Convention center with over 12,000 other environmentally conscious people from around the globe. They have already started planning next year's conference in Los Angeles and I cant wait!!

Here are some photos from the city of Denver! (I took the nighttime and skyline shots and the day shots were taken by my coworker Tina). I was absolutely in love with the big blue bear peeking into the convention center! (click the photos for more details on the city)

As you can see, it was a nice trip! The last photo was the Denver Art Museum that Tina toured while I was at the spa. I insist this building looks like a crumpled piece of paper that God was throwing into the trash can and he missed. Very interesting...

I didn't do much shopping in Denver but I did a lot of looking and window gazing. My funds were limited after discovering a Macy's One Day Sale just hours before leaving Minneapolis on Tuesday afternoon. With 50% off the CLEARANCE prices, I couldn't hold back. My greatest find? A pair of cropped Joe's Jeans regularly priced at $154, on sale for $19.

Saturday afternoon, after a massage at the luxurious Hyatt Denver Convention Center hotel spa and a manicure at the nearby Body Massage Center, I was magnetically drawn to the shops just off 16th Street Mall in the Larimer Square area. The shops in that area were so cool - Square 1 (lots of cool stuff on sale), Z Gallerie (like Pier1 after 3 martinis), Mariel, Loft.22 and Octane. When I walked into what became my favorite Denver boutique, Eve, the owner was helping a young woman decide which shoes to wear with a lovely black satin Nicole Miller cocktail dress. After purchasing a pair of earrings, I saw the same dress on my way out and decided to give it a try. The fit was remarkable!!! I was instantly in love and started daydreaming about how good I would look walking into a room wearing that dress. But the price tag gave me reason for much hesitation - $395. After giving me a 15% off coupon and offering to hold it until Monday she almost had me. But I guess reality set in over the weekend and I had to let go of the dream.

I've looked at it online about 50 times since then... so I'm going to go ahead and make it the item of the day. It was this Nicole Miller dress in black... *sigh*.... someday...









And that's all for today - Tomorrow I'm off to Detroit! More stores and pics after the break!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Toledo, OH by way of Detroit, MI

This past weekend was hectic, last minute and unfortunately/yet excitingly that is what I now call "typical". Thursday evening Rickey called to ask if I wanted to go to Toledo, since he had a show there on Saturday. That's about an hour away from my hometown (Detroit) so I couldn't pass up an opportunity to head home AND get to visit a "new" city (I've never hung out in Toledo). So Friday morning I woke up and hopped my sick self on a plane to Detroit. (I really was sick when I woke up and called in sick... I just happened to feel better by the afternoon... REALLY!)

It was extremely last minute and anyone who knows me knows that I can be soooo overanalytical when it comes to last minute decisions. After spending an hour analyzing my flight options and whether I wanted to try and squeeze in a few hours of work, I decided to just catch the next available flight that I had time to make. The flight price was $1,193 (not gonna happen) but they would allow me to use 25,000 miles to buy the ticket, even at the last minute. So that was my only option. With much hesitation, I used 25,000 of my remaining 28,000 miles and "bought" the ticket. God obviously was guiding my hesitation because not long after I landed, I got an email message from Sharon about the afternoon flight I was originally considering had I gone to work for half the day... SMOKE SCARE ON NWA FLIGHT.

So I finally make it to Detroit and go straight to Aunt Shelley's where we laugh at Wendy Williams and how crazy she is, and laugh at Ellen Degeneres when she embarrasses Janet by calling JD and asking if he'll marry her. Later on we go up to Chili's (which I absolutely HATE - except for the Margaritas) and eat with Daddy and Tanya who had just come from work and posed for this oh, so cute photo...

Saturday afternoon Rickey and Dee made it to town and after picking them up from the airport and saying hi/bye to the fam, we hit up Fishbones in downtown Detroit and after eating, while Rickey napped, Dee and I took in the sites. This is her silly pose in front of the world's tallest indoor waterfall, which happens to be in the International Center Building where the restaurant and hotel were located. (You can barely see the waterfall... I gotta figure out how to work my camera in dark places.)

That night we drove to Toledo, OH for the show and came right back to Detroit afterwards. I was exhausted. Since it was dark and I was behind the wheel, I couldn't get any good pics. While Rickey was meeting and greeting after the show, the girls were cruising the streets and looking for something interesting. Other than a few fun looking restaurants and bars scattered around, it was like any other small town in the North and needless to say we weren't very impressed. This is the one picture I snapped - the Clayton Street bridge from downtown.

And that was it for my weekend. I got back to Minneapolis on Sunday morning and crashed until about 6PM. I know - BOOO. Tomorrow I leave for the rest of the week in Denver. Its the GreenBuild Expo and this is my first time in Denver so I'm very excited. Look for some pics in the next few days!!!

In honor of my trip to Denver, I'm going to add these to my Item of the Day Wish List - SNOW BOOTS. I live in Minnesota and I don't have a real pair of snow boots... go figure. But I won't let it worry me now because the weather in Denver is supposed to be "winter-nice" and I'm going to hope it stays that way all week!

For my plane jane friends - here is a tame yet cute version of the snow boot by Technica available at Nordstrom...

And for those who are a bit more sporty, like myself, Zappos features this pair by Timberland (and they are on sale!)...

See you in a few days!

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Do your friends crack jokes too?

So here's the story... Yesterday I woke up feeling "festive"... and for no apparent reason. It was just one of those days where I decided I was going to make the best of it. I was not going to feel down or sad or depressed in anyway. And to make sure of that, I wanted to wear something so glamorous that it made me sparkle on the inside. That is how I came up with the crazy idea to wear sequins to work.

Anyone who works in corporate America knows that there are rules, spoken and unspoken, about what is appropriate. But sequins, being in that unspoken area, were a risk I was willing to take. So as a self dare, I put my outfit together. Antik Denim jeans with navy and white trim, a white shirt with bell sleeves and a navy sequined tank style top that I was going to use as a sweater vest. I did keep it simple with the shoes, and went with your basic black boots. Can't scare the coworkers too much, you know. So this is what I looked like... (Notice me looking busy in the second pic. It's not easy to take a pic of your butt at work without looking a bit suspicious so I acted as if I were doing something!)

All day long, I caught everyone's eye. It was our company kick-off day for our huge annual United Way Campaign so I looked very celebratory! People on the skyways stared and smiled and coming around the corner at work a group of young ladies screamed "Oh, I LOVE that shirt!!!". I was feeling great about my outfit and even better, I was making people smile, which made me feel really good. Then I got the call from my beloved cousin Gabbi (pictured below with my adorable baby cousin BJ)... I swear she tore me off of my "I am looking so HOT today" pedestal and brought me back to reality...

So Gabbi calls - in response to my email showing pictures of my glammed out attire for the day - and in a serious tone, asks if I am representing our alma mater by wearing one of the Tennessee State University majorette uniforms... I laughed so hard I almost died. Now I have these recurring mental images of "The Sophisticated Ladies" dancing on the field loaded down with sequins! For those of you who have never seen them, here are some photos... nice, huh? LOL, yeah right - I think my outfit was way better...

So while I am still feeling the upcoming holiday spirit, I'll stick with it and present you with an item of the day that will make you the belle of the ball (or the company Christmas party at least). This dress by L.A.M.B. caught my eye instantly. And if you follow Summer's suggestions of pairing it with a red belt or funky, brightly colored shoe, you can take it to a whole new level!!

Buy this dress on

Friday, November 3, 2006

Birmingham, AL and the "Magic City Classic"

Whew, I'm back from the 'Ham (the affectionate term for the "lovely" city of Birmingham, AL).

The Magic City Classic game was horrible. At least for everyone (like me) seated on the  side of the field. ASU was in desperate need of some sort of magical "spirit" while saw the glimpse of weakness and crushed them with no hesitation.

At least, that is what I got out of it.  After a few hours of tailgating and two plates of Uncle Greg's baked beans, baked corn, barbeque chicken, fried chicken, hot sausages, nacho chips and cheese and potato salad - a football game was the last thing on my mind. As I sat in the sun with no eye protection, my focus could not remain on the game. All I kept thinking about was my Dad telling me as a kid that not wearing sunglasses makes you squint and that will lead to wrinkles all over your face way too soon in life. And when I wasn't focused on anti-aging, the Alabama Classic fashion was the center of my attention.

I saw everything from a pimp decked out in his school colors,

to a Diana Ross wanna be,

a man wearing some sort of dead animal family,

and another wearing a suede halter style vest.

The majorettes looked like strippers with sequins and the dance routine (for ASU) was like a routine from the last official Freak-Nic (yes, the moves were THAT old).

All in all, it was a great weekend. Sunday was all about relaxation and family. We hung out at the house, shot ball outside, played on the swings, rode bikes and just enjoyed the warm weather. This is a pic of me enjoying myself in the backyard. I don't like the pic very much, but the trees in the background look so cool, I had to post it!

Cherish in the backyard Bham

 The item of the day was supposed to be a past item but I never got around to it. Anyway, I bought these boots and wore them and got compliments all day!!! I flew from Minneapolis to Memphis to Birmingham and wore them from 6AM in MSP until 8PM in Bham and they were just fine. No pain at all and that is great for a 3" heel! (I did cheat a little - I had a Dr Scholl's Gel insert in the boot). I got them from the Downtown Minneapolis Macy's in dark brown leather with a rose colored tweed trim. You can get them on Zappos if you are brave enough to wear a boot this funky!