Sunday, December 30, 2012

December 30th, 2012 Survey

Belle - gettin' shit DONE.
1. What quirk bothers you the most about other people? Snorting.  Go blow your nose!
2. Would you ever marry for money? No.
3. What outrageous career could you see yourself wanting to do? Write a beauty column for a glossy.  I think I could do a really good job!
4. Do you think world peace is truly a possibility in the future?: Unfortunately, no.  Until everyone wants peace, it's impossible.
5. What's the last thing you ate?  Double Chocolate Milano cookies.  I love those things.
6. What song lyrics best reflect your personality? "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" - Cyndi Lauper
7. Do you think it is important to tell the truth or spare someone's feelings?: It depends on the situation.
8. What is the most awkward moment you have ever had to endure?  it wasn't the worst, but the first that came to mind was when my straight-laced, very PC boss asked me what kind of candy I had in the dish on my desk and I had to answer that they were "coffee Nips."  Damn you and your lasciviously named treats, Nestle!  LOL
9. When driving down the road looking for an address do you turn the radio low?  Yes!  Unless we're in Jason's new car and the announcer just blares over The Boneyard that we've reached our destination.
10. Pretend you are a really good cook, what meal would you make?  I am a pretty good cook, actually!  My best dish is the potato, sausage & collard soup.  C'est si bon!
11. What is your favorite piece of clothing in your closet? Why? My bright pink J. Crew v-neck sweater.  It's so soft and pretty; I just love it.
12. What do you think of when you look at the stars? "Wow".  I also typically check out the moon every night.  I know this sounds weird, but I like the moon.  I can totally see the Man in the Moon face and it looks like a nice guy from a fairy tale is watching over us.
13. If you could say ONE THING to the president, what would it be? If I were to name a sandwich after you, what would be on it?
14. What is your favorite kind of weather? Sunny and warm with a slight breeze.
15. What's one thing you feel you must do in your life before it ends? Marry my J-Barty Party and go to FRANCE.
16. What Disney princess are you most like? Belle from Beauty and the Beast.  She was kind (but not a pushover) and she got shit done.  She wasn't above running errands, cleaning, cooking - normal stuff that most princesses don't do.  She also loved to read and couldn't stand arrogance.  Oh, and she lived in France!  Beauts!
17. Tell me about your worst fashion mistake: I loved to rock some Doc Martens with dresses in early high school.  Not just any Docs, but clear ones (so my crazy socks could show through, of course!) with glow in the dark soles.  Gorgie!
18. Do you believe in astrology?  Some of it seems true/believable.
19. Do you look into people's eyes when you talk to them? Yes.
20. You can have one of the following two things: cake or cookies?  Cake, especially of the sheet variety. :)
21. What's the last TV show you watched?  Law & Order: SVU
22. What would be harder for you, to tell someone you love them or that you don't love them? That you don't.
23. What do you think is the most important thing in this life is? Love and kindness.

Lovcat Wallet

I've been wanting a new wallet for a while and happened upon this bit of adorbsness quite randomly on the internets!  I love it!  It's got my 2 favorite colors for purses/wallets - coral and silver, and it's just fun and different.  It should be big enough for my giant phone to fit in the zippered part so I can use it as a clutch and not have to lug a purse around.  Can't wait for it to arrive!  

Ze Return of Glambunctious

I've decided to shake the dust off of Glambunctious (my former beauty blog) and review products again since it's not like I've ever stopped trying new things and wanting to share my experiences.  I'm excited to do my first review in over a year!  Have a great week!

Resolutions for the New Year

1.) Exercise 3 times a week.
2.) Write a blog post once a week.
3.) Substitute water for soda once every day.
4.) Be more punctual.
5.) QUIT smoking.
6.) Be more confident.  Stop worrying so much about what others might think.  The truth is, they probably don't care!

Often, I don't make resolutions but I felt a strong draw to make some for the next year.  I think mine are realistic and manageable.  There's nothing on the list that hasn't been something I've actually done in the past year, minus the biggie: #5.  I want to be more healthy this year, plain and simple.  The summer after Jason and I met, we were each other's best exercise buddy.  We hit the gym 3, sometimes 4, times a week and we felt FANTASTICO and looked great!  We were both glowing in the pictures I have from that summer and fall.  I slept so much better when we were exercising, and we both felt better about ourselves.  I know the key is to find something you like to do and just do it.  I know I can do it because I want to feel that energetic and confident again.  The quitting smoking will be the doozy of the list, but I feel like I can do it.  Ever since we got engaged, I've had this mental picture of me being smoke-free by the time we get married.  I really don't want to be all gussied up in my wedding finery sneaking puffs on the balcony at Callanwolde.  I want to do this for me.  Nothing good comes from smoking, but amazing things happen when you quit.  :)  

I have been working on being more confident and worrying less about what people think of me.  It's something I've struggled with more and more as I've gotten older.  I find myself turning down the radio when I pull up to a stop light, worrying that someone in another car will overhear me singing along to "Call Me Maybe".  Why?  This is what I've been asking myself every time I automatically do something out of fear of being judged.  What is the worst thing that could happen?  Someone would think I'm a vapid moron with a terrible singing voice?  How, exactly, would that affect me?  Truth is, I'm probably never going to see that person again, and if I do, they aren't going to remember me nor will they chastise my inability to hit a high note in the privacy of my motor vehicle.  When I see people singing, and sometimes dancing, along to a song in their car, it makes me smile.  I LOVE seeing people enjoy themselves and feel free enough to not care what anyone else thinks.  One morning I saw 2 girls absolutely JAMMING out to Katy Perry's "California Gurls" on the way to work and I thought it was adorable.  My self-conciousness goes deeper than car singing, of course, but it's just one example of how much I automatically try to go unnoticed.  I want to get back to my spunky younger self who danced in grocery stores and enjoyed myself without worrying about how my behavior might be perceived.  In the long run, who cares?  Turn UP that Carly Rae Jepsen and ENJOY IT!

What are your resolutions this year?  I wish you all the best of luck in your plans!

Christmas 2012

Our tree and the Comcast Yule Log in full force!
Christmas was really fantastic this year!  Aside from both my mom and I having the flu, we all really celebrated the season in the best way - together.  Jason's folks drove in from NC and stayed with us.  Jason's dad, a semi-retired Lutheran minister, baptized me on Christmas day.  I studied the Apostle's Creed he gave me the last time we visited them in NC and was so proud of myself for having it down-pat when we all said it together as a group when I was baptized.  It was a great feeling, even though I got sweaty and nervous (swervous?) which I tend to do whenever the focus of something is on me.  Unlike TuPac, I don't bask in "All Eyez on Me"!  I am so happy Pastor Craig baptized me; it's a nice prequel to when he marries us in April 2014.  Not many people can say their father in law presided over their wedding ceremony, and I for one am very excited to have him perform the service!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Gone GirlGone Girl by Gillian Flynn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I don't even know the proper way to review this book. It was seriously CRAZY! The first part is interesting, you have no idea whether or not the husband is involved in the disappearance of his wife, you waffle back and forth wondering if he snapped and is just lying when he says he's innocent. Then comes the second half of the book and you're thinking, "HOLY S--T BALLS!", right from the start. The psycho levels of one character are unmatched. Parts of this book reminded me of a really suspenseful, movie-quality episode of Law & Order: SVU, the kind that ends with a palpable "dun-dunnnnnn". I was REALLY disappointed with the ending, that one particular character's crazy ass "won", when I wanted that character locked up for life. Other than that, it's a haunting tale of calculation that will stay with you for days after you finish reading it.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Double Love by Francine Pascal

Double Love (Sweet Valley High, #1)Double Love by Francine Pascal

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

This book made me want to add a new shelf titled "Barfy". This was horrible! I thought I'd read a couple of Sweet Valley High books as a kid but realized it was the Sweet Valley Twins series after I started reading this. There were so many hilariously bad things to highlight! Here are a few of my favorites:

"I make it a habit to know where all the foxiest chicks in Sweet Valley live." Shudder...

"She was so beautiful and fragile at that moment, Steven thought, her brown eyes shining, her hair floating about her oval face in a red-gold cloud." WTF does that mean? Whose hair "floats"? Was it a perm gone awry?

"Can we talk later? There's so much I want to tell you. How about a long conversation over clams and a shake at the Dairi Burger tonight?" The only proper answer to this inquiry is, "Who DOESN'T want to have a long chat over clams and milkshakes?" It's the combo of champions!

"Within seconds, he had jumped into his Datsun and was speeding after them." The mention of a Datsun is just amazing!

As a child, I only read books 1 and 2 of the Sweet Valley Twins series. After reading this book, I remembered why! Jessica is an insufferable brat and Liz is a wuss. These fools have nothing on Ramona Quimby.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Kin by Kealan Patrick Burke

KinKin by Kealan Patrick Burke
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Wow. This book was incredible. At times, extremely difficult to read due to some of the horrifying content, but the writing and the characters were excellent. The writing, oh my goodness, can this man WRITE?! I thought he'd become the next Stephen King after I read "The Turtle Boy", and after reading numerous other books and novellas by Burke, I remain convinced. His talent for capturing emotion on paper is immense and I only hope he continues to write like crazy. This book had the feel, for me, of The Silence of the Lambs; that constant state of not being able to remotely predict what's coming next. Terror, despair, repulsion, misguided faith, loyalty, tension, treachery, redemption - this book has it all.
View all my reviews

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Nuts (Acorns, specifically)

My mom and I had lunch Saturday and she asked if I wanted to swing by The Solarium for a drive-by.  So we finally get there (relying solely on my memory and navigation skills can be dangerous at worst, and highly time-consuming at best) and took a walk around.  There was a florist setting up for a wedding there that night and mom asked her about The Solarium's claim that 100 people could fit on the brick patio.  The florist looked dubious and said the only way that would be possible would be to have chairs "spilling down the 2 foot wide sidewalks".  To quote my friend Blair, that's "kind of not ideal."  The more we looked at the patio, the less likely it seemed we could fit everyone on it for our ceremony.  I REALLY want to have the ceremony outside and the reception inside, if possible, so the outdoor space is pretty important.  The patio is also on a fairly busy residential street with Marta buses swooshing through, a fire station about 300 feet away, and a new pub within spitting distance with a big ol' patio crammed with boisterous football fans out front.  I wish The Solarium had a more private outdoor space, but alas, they do not.  I also wish the inside wasn't painted light green, but that's another issue.  There was an enormous tree that arches over the patio area that was dropping acorns like it was 1999, which both alarmed and amused us thinking about guests getting nut-bombed during our wedding ceremony next fall!  We hit up a hotel in downtown Decatur as it would be convenient to have the wedding at a hotel since we have out of town guests.  Unfortunately, the outdoor space was kind of hilairs (it looked like the side of AMC Northlake - wide sidewalk, cement walls) and it overlooked a beautiful fountain the entrance to 2 parking decks.  After that, we spent at least 20 minutes driving around the Emory area trying to find the Emory Conference Center Hotel (ECC).  We finally found the beyotch and it was REALLLLL nice.  Beautiful courtyards, patios, fire pits, amazing ballrooms, floor-to-ceiling stone fireplaces, and other ritzy accoutrements.  Turns out it costs $12K to rent the larger ballroom or $6K for either of the smaller ones, plus $67 per person for cocktail hour (not including cocktails...I'm serious), $65-$71 per person for dinner, and $33 per person per hour for mid-level liquors.  Plus $90 per bartender.  Plus $90 per carving station attendant.  Plus a $750 ceremony fee.  Plus 85 other charges.  So scratch that place off the list, STAT!

So at the end of the day, we have nothing "cemented" other than having our name in at The Solarium on the reservation list.  I talked to Jason and he shared that he too had some concerns about The Solarium fitting with what we were looking for and agreed we should revisit the Trolley Barn (TB).  I mentioned Callanwolde (the 1920's Gothic Tudor home of Charles Howard Candler, the oldest son of the founder of Coca Cola) as I'd previously emailed with their event coordinator Charlotte (who is an absolute PEACH!) and Callanwolde is so damn gorgeous.  Their outdoor space is super amazeballs and the architecture is stunning.  Ever since we got engaged, I've had this secret dream of getting my picture taken in my wedding dress on the staircase there.  So today I emailed Charlotte to see if we can come for a tour this week.  The mere possibility of getting married there thrills me to the core!  Bonus: they have coral curtains in the music room so you know this is a solid establishment.  We'll see what happens this week!

Bride posing on the Grand Staircase
Ceiling detail over the staircase
The Grand Staircase

Friday, October 19, 2012

Congrats to Dmitry Sholokhov!

So happy Dmitry Sholokhov won Project Runway last night!  He's been one of our favorites the entire season.  The candy he dress made in the unconventional challenge a few weeks ago was incredible!

 Dmitry, you had us at "one way monkey"!  

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Runway Zuppe

Yurm!  Homemade kale & sausage soup AND 
the Project Runway finale?  Life is good.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


In Memoriam

Monday, August 27, 2012

Nuptials 2014: Venue & Dress Update

So it's been a little over a month since I last updated, so here goes!

Firstly, the day we had an appointment to check out The Solarium turned out to be pretty remarkable.  I got in a car accident on my way to work, 2 hours prior to the appointment.  I was/am fine but my poor sweet little Altima was totaled.  I know I should just focus on being happy that no one was hurt in the accident aside from minor bumps and bruises, but let's get real - totaling your newly paid-off automobile isn't a great way to start the day!  I learned that airbag dust smells REAL, REAL BAD, and that seat belts are your buddies.

RIP, Goldie.  Thanks for being such a good car!  Goldie 4-EVA.
We did get to tour The Solarium and we loved it!  We have the date we want reserved and we are so excited!  It's such a bright and sunny space and I think it'll be beauts!

Front corridor
Main space 
Outdoor patio space
J-Barty Party!
The representative at The Solarium was a really nice woman named Beth.  It's a beautiful place and I can definitely see our family and friends having a great time there!  My only complaint would be the interior paint color - light green doesn't really "go" with a whole slew of other colors.  I wish they'd painted it something neutral or just stuck with goes-with-everything-white.  If you look through their book of pictures of past events, you can see that a lot of people just said eff it and used whatever colors they wanted to, regardless of whether they were complimentary or not.  I'm not sure what colors we'll be using but I was loving the coral and gray scheme.  Not sure how dope it will look on a pale green backdrop, so I may have to go back to the drawing board there.  I know I'm being picky, but I'm a big color person and really like shades that compliment each other.  Anywho, that's the most bridezilla observation I've had thus far!

I also found my dress this Saturday!!  It was serendipitous.  My mom and I were out tooling around, doing our Saturday thing, and she asked if I wanted to pop into a bridal shop near our place that I'd previously said I'd like to check out.  We had no idea what we were in for and I assumed we'd have to make an appointment and come back another time.  To my surprise, an appointment wasn't necessary and the bridal consultant gave us the run-down and sent us to pull dresses that we liked.  Not 15 minutes later, I was standing on the infamous bridal pedestal - the one I've had nervous heart palpitations over; I'm not big on having a lot of me-focused attention and I wasn't sure how I would feel (I'd wagered that I'd feel like a giant goob) but I ended up not really caring!  I just knew that I loved the dress I was seeing in the mirror and I was loving the look on my mom's face.  I'd pulled 3 dresses and decided to try on the other 2 just for kicks seeing as how I'd never tried on dresses before, and I knew the minute I stepped into dress #2 that it wasn't my thing.  I still came out in it to show my mom and she was really diplomatic about asking me what I thought first rather than hollering, "NEXT!" or "EW."  I told her I wasn't comfortable in it and she said she could see it on my face the second I came out of the dressing room.  I don't even remember what dress #3 looked like because I just wanted to put dress #1 back on!  I put it on again, and seeing my mom's face light up when she saw me in it just confirmed that it was "the dress" that I was meant wear.  I am in love with it!  As a bonus, it's actually comfortable.  Who knew that was even possible?  I mean, I wouldn't wear it to Burger King for a BK Broiler and a cup of Chicken Fries, but it's really comfortable for a special occasion dress!  I am so excited!

This is how I plan to walk down the aisle.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Nuptials 2014: Venue Update - July 18, 2012

A couple of months ago one of the places we were looking at as a possible wedding venue was this pavilion/tent thing at Piedmont Park. Well, we were thinking about it until we discovered it cost approximately $8K to rent it. Their contact person also alerted me that the weekend we want to get married is…wait for it...GAY PRIDE WEEKEND! I’m certain traffic and parking would be absolutely no problem, right?! So anyway, Piedmont Park was crossed off the list.

Today I heard back from the lady at The Solarium in Decatur that another couple has the date we're interested in on hold, and also that that weekend just so happens to be the Oakhurst Arts and Music festival! Complete with DJ's! Bands! Drunkards! She said that due to the noise from that festival, The Solarium does not permit outdoor wedding ceremonies during that weekend. We are 0 for 2, LOL! Luckily we're not die-hard about that date! We were thinking about maybe choosing October 26th. I just remembered that the annual Decatur Beer Fest is typically held in mid to late October…and the Decatur Wine Fest is the first weekend of November. Bon temps!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Revlon and Crabbin'

I thought it was high time that I wrote an actual post instead of a polyvore collage! My polyvore mania has ebbed a little bit, which is good since one can only live on 3 hours of sleep every night for just so long. I've recently moved back into my previous position (at the same place I've been working for 7 years - SEVEN years and 2 months; isn't that crazy?!) and I am so happy! I love the people I work with and they always manage to make every work day into something enjoyable. ♥

Jason and I are about to embark on the house hunting adventure and it should be highly entertaining. We've started doing drive-bys of houses we've found online that we like and that's been fun. Unfortunately, the stop and go driving while writing in a notebook ("Tore up driveway", "Paint color best described as 'barf buckets'", etc.) makes me wanna hurl, so we've made a note to always bring a can of Coke to settle the heaving beast that is car sickness! We're looking in the neighborhoods near our current place and hope we can find something groovy. We would love a 3 bedroom house with 2 bathrooms and a 2-car garage.  I'm lobbying hard for a yard that is already fenced-in so we can procure dream pups shortly after moving in and they can romp and stomp around outside to their heart's content! Cue the wimpering puppies video!

We're getting excited about wedding planning! And when I say "we", I really mean Jason. I personally could care less about these shenanigans. Ha! Hopefully we can find a great venue that's not ludicrously expensive and set the mothereffin' DATE! Lord knows I get asked all the time if we've set it. I wonder how people with really long engagements field this question? Although I guess anything more than a year IS a really long engagement, but what can I say? We're not too stringent on our time piece. We looked at the Trolley Barn last month, which was beautiful but we had some concerns. It's BIG. Like 250 people would be comfortable doing the macarena (with full extension on the arm moves) or the wobble {Shoutout to ATL, Jo-Ja!) which is good on one hand, but we're not having that big of a wedding! I think everyone would be huddled around 6 tables and it would feel very cavernous. They also have a lot of rules about what you can and can't do, and the amount of your deposit you can kiss buh-bye should any of the items listed on the "Can't" list happen to occur (they are especially not joking about your guests stepping on the grass). You can't hang anything from the rafters (like floral balls, overzealous party goers, or twinkle lights) except for drapes from an approved vendor (starting at $1,000...for fabric sheets...dangled from the beams), nor can you hang anything up on the walls. Which I totally understand the fact that it's a historic site and they can't have things being constantly nailed into the walls, but there are some ideas I have for cute shiz like family memory boards and photo collages that would have to be scrapped if we rented the Trolley Barn (unless I could construct a lean-to of sorts for the boards to rest against). We have an appointment to go check out another venue in Decatur this week so I'll keep you posted! Bottom line, once we find a venue, we can see what their availability is and set the date. People don't realize this, but you don't really set your date - your venue really dictates that based on when the space is available for rent. Hopefully soon we'll get that nailed down and can get to steppin' on the next task!
Outside of the Trolley Barn
Lately, my spare time has been monopolized with crab fishing. Well, watching crab fishing on TV! Alaskan king crabbing, baby! My mom got me hooked (#punning) on Deadliest Catch! I've been watching the current season on Tuesdays with Jason, and then we've also been getting caught up on the previous seasons thanks to my friend Netflix. I love this show! My current favorite boat is the Time Bandit because they are crazy and FUN. They keep a double carton of eggs on their deck for the sole purpose of throwing them at other fishing vessels. These are my kind of people!

I have been quite lax in my reading as of late; who has the time when there's red and orange gold to be caught on the Bering Sea? I've only read 7 books all year, which is paltry compared to last year's grand total of 53! Alas, I've noticed a pattern that I read like there's no tomorrow one year and kind of don't read very much the next. I am reading a book right now that I'm really enjoying; it's called "Too Close to Home: A Thriller" by Linwood Barclay and it is JAMMIN'. I haven't read a book this suspenseful and layered since Cammie McGovern's "Eye Contact". I'm only about 35% through, so it could take a turn for Shodsville, but so far it's great! If you like suspenseful/"THRILLER! THRILLER NIGHT!"-style books, I definitely recommend this.

In other TV news, she who will remain nameless (ha!) got me into The Bachelorette! I know. I can't even believe myself. All of the things I said about this show with disgust, I am now saying with delight. "It's SO ridiculously CORNBALL!" "Does anyone expect to find love this way?" "This is HORRIBLE!" Emily Maynard? Love her. And yes, it is horribly corny, and I think these guys must sign something at the beginning of the season deeding their balls to ABC for life, but that's the magic of it! You almost can't believe anyone would say this cheesy, romance novel-esque B.S. aloud, much less on television, but they DO and the result is often so cringe-worthy that it becomes wildly enjoyable! This Sunday's the finale and this household is rooting for 1 F Jef, but realistically, she'll probably choose Arie because she's been crunching on him (how long's it been since you've heard that 90's phrase?!) since the first day.

 Lastly, on the beauty frontier, the products I'm loving right now are as follows:

☞ DIY lip scrub that works better than lip scrubs you buy: 1 teaspoon of brown sugar & about half a teaspoon of honey. It works like a dream! (If you don't have brown sugar, plain old white sugar works just as well. After all, the only thing brown sugar has that white sugar doesn't is a dollup of molasses.)

☞ Revlon Colorburst Lipstick in Soft Nude (1 swipe'll do ya - anything more and you get that Jerseylicious pie-hole look)

☞ Revlon Super Lustrous SPF 15 Lip Gloss in Pink Whisper (Lovely soft pink that looks great over lipstick or on it's own)

☞ MAC Cremeblend Blush in Brit Wit (dusty rosy medium pink)

☞ BareEscentuals Blush in Thistle (dusty rosy pink)

☞ Aussie 3 Minute Miracle (my HG conditioner, fo sho! I've used it for years and it's a fantastic deep conditioner that magically doesn't weight hair down. It rinses clean and your hairs are left looking quite fab.)

☞ OPI Shorts Story Nail Polish (bright blue-based pink that really pops)

☞ Fresh Hesperides Grapefruit (Smells SO divine! Crisp, clear grapefuits comin' atcha! My only thumbs down is that it fades crazy fast - about half an hour! I'd recommend the rollerball form so you can take it with you for touch-ups!)

I hope you're all having a great summer! Much love!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012