image credit: the love list
Friday, March 30, 2012
One thing is certain, if you have a room full of 10 girls, (and guys for that matter) from all over the United States, you can probably bet the ones with old time double names are from the South. Southerners take great pride in our family names and tradition...which I love. When the husband and I found out we were expecting, in no time we had a girl's name and a boy's name picked out. When I hear about couples nearing their due date and frantically polling friends and thumbing every baby name book on the shelf it always amazes me. How could they not have a name picked out already? What about the baby book monogramming, or the bedding, or silver rattle monogram? When we found out we were having a girl, it was easy to proceed with monogrammed items way before her arrival. We knew we wanted a double name, and by double name I mean...the toddler's first name is two names and yes, it's all her first name...after the husband's mother and my great grandmother. She has a middle name to go with it as well...after my grandmother. While there are some more trendy names (not "Apple"...as much as I love Gwyneth) that I like, I think it's important to have a strong, meaningful name to bestow upon your child. I remember in the movie Dirty Dancing (don't judge...it's one of my favorites) that "Baby"...in the words of Johnny, wasn't a baby anymore...she was Frances. I remember thinking it was such a great name, a strong name that would stand the times...not so common place. I knew that one day I'd try to pick a name that was similar in tradition. And so, if you are faced with the daunting task of picking a name for your soon to arrive little one, take a look at your family first...I'll bet you'll find some unexpected names you love. Oh, and don't forget about the monogram...be mindful of how those letters will interlock. I once had a friend who had so many things monogrammed that when she found out she was having another boy she chose another family name but with the mindful condition that it had to be the same combination of letters so she could use all her monogrammed things for baby #2! Point is...maybe it's a Southern thing and well, maybe it's a little pretentious but..."Frances" or "Brandi"...there's just not really any comparison.
Thursday, March 29, 2012
I came upon this moisturizer back around Christmas last year. While I gave it a glance and quick smell, I eventually passed on it despite it's eye-catching, no frills packaging due to the fact that I'm a Lubriderm loyal. I've used Lubriderm since I was in high school. I have super sensitive skin and try not to switch things up...don't change what's not broken, right? Well, speaking of 'broken'...after the toddler's cast was removed earlier this month I was faced with an arm that I knew baby lotion ( I know, I still use it...just love that smell on her) and Lubriderm wasn't going to be enough. That little arm was thirsty and so, I turned back to the Yu-Be I had considered some months ago. I mean, if it's good enough for the harsh elements of Mt. Everest then it should work for us. It's been around for 50 years and is touted as helping diaper rash, cracked heels, dry cuticles, and even frostbite! I have to admit I love the smell although it's a bit medicinal but if you like Carmex then you'll like the Yu-Be scent as well. I slathered the moisturizer on her little arm a total of 3 times and like magic...it was all better. I've since put a little on my face before bed in some troublesome dry spots and it works with just one application! Yu-Be is good for all seasons so even though it's nearly Summer, rest assured it will soothe your beach bound bare feet and that sunburn too!
To learn more about the Yu-Be product line and to get some free samples, visit them here
image credit: Yu-Be
Monday, March 19, 2012
Gone are the days of manners and Emily Post...and doing the right thing. I am constantly amazed at the number of people who receive nice, hand-addressed invitations to parties, soirees, galas, etc. where a response is requested...yet no reply is ever received. These are people that know better, were raised better and whom should be better behaved! Yes, I'm on my (Caldrea filled) soap box! So, let's have a little refresher course...If someone sends an invitation with "Reply Requested", "Regrets Only", or "RSVP" (which is the french abbreviation for Respond, please), it means that they think enough of you to send you an invitation to an event where they are trying their best to make it an enjoyable occasion...meaning, they'd like you to be able to eat, have a chair to sit in, and a cold drink (or hot if it's in the winter)! Don't act like you forgot to respond or worse, don't wait to respond hoping something better might come along that you'd rather attend. If you aren't going to be able to attend...the very least you can do is let that person know. Often times the host has even gone to the trouble of enclosing a self addressed stamped card and...with the price of stamps nearly 50 cents the least you can do is grab a pen, make a check mark, and drop it in the post. On invitations with no reply card enclosed, you are usually given a phone number or more often an email address. With the world of social media at an all time high, have we become so passive that we can't even pick up the phone and speak to someone briefly? And so, that brings me to email as a mode of response...personally I think an email address listed on a nice formal invitation is, well...tacky, but I understand we aren't exactly out under the live oaks trading pecan pie recipes sipping sweet tea and fanning our faces while our hoop skirts are gathering freshly mowed grass...(read, I understand that times have changed and the days of the old south are bygone). (And by "old south" I mean the days when manners were mandatory so don't go getting your political panties in a wad). So, with that said...if you simply can not respond by any mode provided, then you probably shouldn't have been invited anyway! There, I said it! Seriously though, what if when people didn't respond and then subsequently show up we didn't let them in? Would it make people more likely to respond? Probably not. And, no, I'm not trying to be mean but I think that it's a sad day when people don't have the courtesy to let someone know they can not attend something when the person who sent the invitation thought enough of the person to send them something in the first place. We are so consumed with texting and facebooking and twitter that we forget how to be real people...we forget that the South prides itself on manners and social graces and, well...if we can't remember our manners then in a way the North wins again!
image credit:a tropical affair
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
I recently started reading Pamela Druckerman's Bringing Up Bebe and I love it! I had heard about the book and my initial thought was probably the same as everyone else...how could the French be better at this...hold some sort of special insight? But, much to my delight, the book is really insightful...and also much to my delight I have somewhat followed the parenting pattern of the French, albeit unbeknownst to me. A lot of the information is common sense but for whatever reason, we as Americans have far to much stimulus in our world and therefore find ourselves off track a lot! What I've gathered from the book so far is that French mothers, in general, don't go off track...they stand firm and teach their children how to play alone, how night-time is reserved for adult activities and if the child wants to be a part of that then they have to learn to adjust...not the adult. French mothers are attentive, loving mothers, but they don't jump for hand sanitizer at every speck of dirt or oblige every demand. We as Americans, on the other hand cater to our child's every wish. I'm guilty of this, after all, the toddler is my only child and I try to be the "fun mom" yet in doing so I know that I do things that establish a pattern of her getting her way...over and over again. I'm not a lover of parenting books, I feel like more often than not they provide a plan that you must strictly adhere to in order to have a happy child...again, not what should be the point. Yes, the child should be happy but the child will never be happy if the mother and the father aren't happy. You have to get off the collision course with appeasement and remember we can all live together in a place that's not overrun with toys and Nick jr. We all parent differently, what works for some doesn't work for others but I think the information in this book, Bringing Up Bebe, is valuable and it has a cute jacket too! If you're tired of cooking macaroni and cheese every night and watching Dora all day then you might want to see how the French are able to get brie in their little babes bellies, all the while maintaining calm, assertive control, and looking, well...very French!
image credit: wsj
And so, 38 days and two casts later, we are cast free and all healed up! The toddler never missed a beat. Bath time was tough, hair washing was even more tough, and hand washing was nearly impossible but we battled through and are all a little tougher for it. I'm happy to be back on the keyboard and I have a bevy of things to blog about. My little mind has been reeling with everything from a new moisturizer I tried, a new book I'm reading, jewelry, spring fashion, and the manner-less society we live in! I'm ready to rant and rave again so get ready!
image credit: mississippicandace