A geeky girl living in the big city, making her way, the only way she knows how... no wait, that's The Dukes of Hazzard. Who am I again? Oh yeah, a pop culture obsessed writer, publishing person, and occasional nerd. And I'm getting married. I talk about that, too.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

A post-y pause, and some music

It gets a little frantic here around Unfeasible Enterprises in October, what with preparations for the Frankfurt Book Fair. I'm not going this year, which is a total relief, even though that means I'm not tacking on a vacation afterwards to somewhere in Europe. Instead, I'll be holding down the fort here in the office, and then heading out to Utah for a conference.

Before all THAT though, there are the preparations, which have been taking up a goodly portion (if by that you mean mind-crushing amount) of my work day. I missed NIA last night to stay late and work, getting home just in time to catch up on "Torchwood," pack, watch "Bionic Woman," and yes, ok, get in a couple of levels on LOTRO.

Tonight though, I fly out to Denver! Woot! I have three weeks of Entertainment Weeklys as well as the most recent issue of Modern Bride to catch up on, and a pile of library books to tote along as well if I feel like it. My work reading pile is manageable, so I'm leaving it at work, and will plan to tackle it once I'm back.

In the meantime... I got to thinking about some of the music Doyce and I have sent back and forth to each other, and tunes for the wedding beyond those our swing band will play. "Hey There Delilah" by the Plain White T's is a recent song that means something for us, but the lyrics of "Leaving on a Jet Plane" and "5000 Miles" are also resonant. So, a question for the forum (or the comment section, as it may be). What songs have special meaning for you and your sweetie?

While you're thinking about it, here's a link to some of ours.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

I bought shoes!

I know, I know. Just pretend to be surprised, ok? For me?

I had lunch today down in the Union Square area, and since we couldn't get a reservation until 1:30, I headed down a little early and hit DSW. I didn't even know that were having a special clearance, but I was very happily surprised. I had less than 20 minutes, I think, to get in, find silver shoes, buy them, and get out again and meet my lunch date. So how'd I do?

I bought two pair!! (Not that I can find any pictures of them online, of course.)

The first pair was a peep-toe t-strap that buckled at the ankle. The t-strap was all pretty and rhinestone-y, and someone remarked that it looked like a dance shoe -- which I took as a good thing, since I plan on doing a lot of dancing in it!

The second pair (both were from Nina, by the way) was on the clearance rack, open toed sandals with a strap that crossed over from the outside of my foot to the inner ankle, then became a slingback strap. Very fancy.

I didn't have a lot of time, as I mentioned, so I bought both, went to my lunch with a fun editor (sent back my burger for being too rare, which I hate doing, but it was red!), and came back to the office for a fashion show. See, I need other people's opinions. I like to hear what other people have to say, and having taken in all their thoughts, will then make my final call.

So I walked around the office, wearing one shoe of each pair, and polled about 8 women. Off the bat, most preferred the fancier shoe with the slingback. But when I described what it was for, and when I would be wearing it, most said the t-strap was better. So, the t-strap it is!! I'll be trying it on with the dress tonight to make sure I like the look with the hem, but then I can go and get my super-bra, and take the dress to be altered for the wedding.

And speaking of weddings, I was reading Weddingbee, as I'm wont to do, and read this in one bride's post describing her dress-shopping adventures:
Well, with this dress I learned the lesson that 95% (my rough estimation) of brides realize upon dress shopping – what you initially think you want is probably not what you end up liking/buying.
And what struck me about that was that I'm apparently in the 5% group. Sure, when I was a kid dreaming of dresses, I had a different idea of what I wanted, but when I actually WENT dress shopping, the dress we walked out of the store with was almost exactly what I described to the saleswoman.

I'm not saying I'm super-amazing or anything, but part of my weight loss journey, I think, has been recognizing the looks that work for me, and sticking with them. And as that makes four labels I can throw on this post, I'll leave it at that. To thine own self be true -- but before you can do that, make sure you know who you are!

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Fun facts about 200

- At a less well-known battle, 200 Spartans successfully held off 12 Greek toga-makers, who tried to convinced the muscle-bound fighters that they didn't need to show it ALL off. Yelling, "This. Is. SPARTA!!!" the Spartans tossed the Greeks and their bolts of fabric off some cliffs.

- It took 1 seamstress 200 hours to sew the gold beading on Eva Longoria's Emmy dress. It wouldn't have taken nearly that long, but the seamstress only had four fingers.

- I read over 200 manuscripts in a year.

- Much like a group of crows is called a "murder", and a group of otters are a "romp", 200 sparrows are a "ninja armada."

- The 200th song on my iTunes jukebox on my work computer, when organized by album name, is Beggar's Blues by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. When I organize it by song title, it is Cheeseburger in Paradise by Jimmy Buffett.

- It took Fishnetmag 200 days to respond to a submission of another of my and Doyce's stories, but they said yes!

- 200 candy corn pieces are 18 points on Weight Watchers. For 200 points, I could have 2200 candy corn!

- Yesterday was 200 days until our wedding day!!

All of the above facts are patently false, gross exaggerations, based on bad math, or just plain wrong. Except the last.


Monday, September 24, 2007

"T" is for Tivo!

Just about to head home for a delicious night of new TV!! Woot! Part and parcel of that, of course, is the seasonal cleansing of the Tivo (or DVR. Whatever). Sadly, I canceled the series recordings of the now defunct "Veronica Mars," "The Dresden Files," and "Gilmore Girls." (There was something else I was going to miss, but I can't recall. I'll edit this later.) I also gave up on "ER." My coworker and I decided it jumped the shark when whole episodes of it began taking place in Africa. What part of "a series set in a Chicago county hospital ER" don't you get?!?

I added "The Office," which the roomie has been watching with his GF. I still often find it uncomfortable, but it can be very funny. Also added tonight's premiere "Chuck," which got a nice writeup on TeeVee. What else am I looking forward to? Of new shows, pretty much just "The Bionic Woman." Old stuff -- I can't wait for tonight's new "Heroes," as well as the returns of "30 Rock" and "My Name is Earl."

Let me know if I'm potentially missing anything else that looks good!


Changing of the guard?

So Doyce gave me a trial game code the last time I was out in Denver, for ten free days of Lord of the Rings Online. I brought the disk home and set it on my dresser, doing nothing further with it. I have CoH, I told myself. That's enough. Two weeks ago when he was out for the engagement party, he found the disk and installed it on my computer, making sure the game ran fine, and telling me again how I should sign up, so we could have a game we could play together, and both start out on the same page, so to speak.

(He conveniently skipped over the part when he could recite the entire mythology and history of Middle Earth. I'm marrying a total GEEK.)

Well, I gave it a try, and it's very different than CoH, but that doesn't mean I don't enjoy it. I do -- I made a hobbit, and an elf, and a human -- and while there's times certain aspects of the game go against the kind of straight-forward play I know and enjoy, there is a lot of fun to be had in our being able to explore this world together, neither one of us always the lead character, showing the other around.

In CoH, I feel like I reached the end-game -- months ago, if I'm being honest. We still have fun when we play together, but I'm long past the time when I had to get on and see what new part of the game I could discover next. The lower-level character version of Noelle that I run around with the tank version of Hang-Time is mostly just so we have a game we can play together when we're 1600 miles apart.

So, I'm thinking...

I think that's going to be LOTRO for a while. My CoH account is paid up until January, unless I can figure out a way to put it on hold, so I may still find myself being a hero now and then. Especially if a group of people I know and love want to get on and be silly Hostess Heroes. But since I'm only getting on to spend time with my honey, we thought it'd be fun to do something different.

It's a big change. I've got something like 3 years and 8 months of time invested in the game (which is crazy long when I think of it), and I just did an interview with a writer about meeting my fiance through an online game. Not even mentioning the book I was going to write, which has been collecting dust for months. But Doyce is right. It's nice to have something that's just ours, not something with a ton of history for either of us.

It's been great visiting Paragon City, but I think I ought to move on now, or I may never leave. And I have other things I want to do with my time.


Sunday, September 23, 2007

Low standards = Happy day

It's entirely possible that I may have imbibed a wee bit too much at a party for my friend Timothy's birthday last night. But you know? It's the weekend. I've already finished one book, am halfway through another, got in some lovely sleep and game time with my bear, and got some groceries. I'm feeling relatively accomplished, considering the rather low standards I set for myself this weekend.

I considered doing some shoe shopping (when don't I consider shoe shopping, to be honest?), but since I'm heading out to Denver next weekend, and have already discussed hitting the outlets out there, as well as doing some exciting formal wear shopping, I am (I think) being quite strong and holding off. Although I do need to be aware of time. I need to get my silver shoes to wear with the green dress for C's wedding, get the magic garment to wear underneath that holds everything in place, and only then can I take the dress in to be altered. All that within the next month.

Oh, and though I found (well, ok, Doyce sent me the link) a KICK-ASS Halloween costume, the cool party I've been to for the last few years isn't happening this year. Poo. Still, it's an easily walk-around-in-able costume, so I'll have fun wearing it to go trick-or-treating with the little munchkins, as is my usual.


Friday, September 21, 2007

Hooray! It's the weekend!

The office is emptying out for the holiday, and considering how much work I'm going to have to do over the weekend, I've decided to head home now. Maybe I'll go get that manicure/pedicure I've been thinking of for weeks. What I need to do is buy a few birthday presents, but I'll settle for just not falling asleep on the ride home.



Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Puppy Update!

They're found! Hooray, hooray, hooray!!


Reading Update

Getting harder and harder to keep the internet researchers away from my tiny little corner of the web, so for those who might have found your way here, a note on what I'm reading.

I'm always a little dismayed when I look at my list of recent reads and see the same ten books that have been on there forever. Now, granted, I put up five of them the last time I updated, but that was way back over Labor Day weekend, when I had several days at the beach to enjoy some leisure reading. Since then, it's been all submissions, all the time.

Last night, I tackled four partials -- that is, five chapters each of four different novels. I liked one enough to consider asking for more, but I think I won't, since I'm only so-so about it. On my to-be-read pile (something I hope to tackle this weekend, and really cut down in size), I have two full manuscripts that I requested after reading the opening chapters, one full that I requested if some changes were made (based on the opening pages), and another full from an author who I've spoken to about another book, that she's currently revising based on my notes, and sent this other book in the meantime.

I also have a full manuscript that one of my current clients recommended to me, an adult novel from another current client, though we're concentrating right now on her middle grade manuscripts, and a possible YA novel from an author represented by another agent here, which is more pleasure reading than anything else. Finally, I have a middle grade novel one of the other agents here passed to me for my thoughts.

Oh, and I have Cecile Castellucci's "The Queen of Cool" from the library, after meeting her at SCBWI and loving "Boy Proof."

So, if you don't hear from me in days and weeks, and you're thinking of sending out a rescue party -- I'm probably just reading. Thank goodness there's nothing good on tv...

Oh shite. The new season is starting, isn't it? Oh boy...

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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Starlight Barking

Please send up a little prayer to Sirius, the Dog Star, for the safe and quick return of my boy's two dogs, Jake and Dizzy. Those of you with pets of your own, give 'em a hug for us. And if you don't mind asking, see if they wouldn't mind trotting out the ole Starlight Barking and telling Jake and Dizzy to hurry home.

Come home, puppies!


Monday, September 17, 2007


Got some nice pictures from Doyce's trip to NYC this weekend, and from the engagement party, but this is one of my favorites. All together now, "Awwwww..."
Hint.  I'm the tan one, with the ring!

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Hair stuff

So I was out to lunch, my mind drifting, thinking about the Emmys and about my wedding -- as you might imagine, since the Red Carpet pre-show I caught on E! was all about weddings, from Guilana's to Ellen's to Eva's to Rebecca's to Katherine's, etc. And the fact is, I got my idea for my wedding hair from some Red Carpet shots from the past -- Julia Roberts and Kate Beckinsale, mostly, so I was eager to see if any of today's crop of stars were showing anything exciting -- maybe for me to try for C's wedding in November.

But you know? I was pretty disappointed! I trolled a bit on the internet to find some shots of the stars, to see if anything stuck with me, but nothing did. Nothing good, at least. I really didn't love Ellen Pompano's giant beehive, and that weird wing of hair on Kate Walsh's right side was just disturbing.

You know who looked adorable? Veronica Mars -- soon to be appearing on Heroes! Her hair was pulled back, but loose, not tightly slicked like her soon-to-be-costar Hayden-Just-Turned-18, or Katherine Heigl. One look I didn't love was Marcia Cross', who hit her hair with a straight iron and just let it hang. Likewise Debra Messing, both with such pretty red hair, but kinda boring.

Loved the female half of Filliam H. Muffman, though, and she's got me rethinking my idea of a long piece of jewelry to hang down my back in my backless dress for C's wedding. Loose wavy hair above an open back and a happy, loving partner: that's all I need!!

Did anyone see some great hair I missed? And what were your favorite looks altogether? I loved Julia Louis-Dreyfus, but then you know I'm a sucker for purple!

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A comment on the Emmys.

The absolute best moment of the night (which I started watching with an hour delay, and was caught up by the end, thanks to judicious fast-forwarding of commercials and boring bits) was Stephen Colbert and John Stewart's presentation of Best Actor in a Comedy, which was won by Ricky Gervais for Extras. Who wasn't there, so they gave it to "our friend Steve Carell!" Who ran down from his seat and jumped around on stage with Colbert and Stewart. E! Online joked about the nerds winning after all -- let's just allow that this time, there was something especially funny about the comedy awards!

Also, I can't wait to hear Colbert commiserate about losing again, after last year's loss to Barry Manilow, this time to Tony Bennett.


A recap!

Lovely weekend with Doyce here in NYC. He arrived bright and early Friday morning, and after I headed off to work and he took part in a conference call, he met me for lunch and then sat and watched some Doctor Who in my office on his laptop while I finished some stuff up. We headed out a little early and kicked back at home before a delicious dinner at Stove, around the corner from my apartment. Doyce commented on the simple names of so many of the restaurants I've taken him to in Astoria -- Stove, Cup, "The Pizza Place," "The Diner"...

After dinner, we watched "Smoking Aces" on demand, and were floored by the huge, amazing cast of characters -- big actors in blink-and-you'll-miss-'em parts, like Ben Affleck, Matthew Fox, and Jason Bateman. In all, not quite the heist movie I was thinking it might be -- more Tarantino-esque, but still with a nice twist I only half figured out in advance.

Saturday we had some french toast for breakfast, then grabbed the bus out to the airport to pick up a car, leaving us the afternoon to get ready and head up to Garrison to my cousin's Architecture Digest-worthy house for an engagement party.

Which was great fun, seeing family and enjoying good food, drinks, and conversation. My mom made a beautiful toast, wishing us all the best and nearly bringing me to tears. I also had the chance to talk to some of my cousins about my work situation, and I believe I'm coming closer to a specific decision about the future, although I'm still waiting on a few more meetings.

My friends (most of my and Doyce's bridal party) helped us load the car up with the generous gifts we received, and then I drove us all home, a car load of sleeping party guests and me on the Palisades. Easy-peasy, right up until the traffic to get to the George Washington Bridge. And yes, if you know the area, you too may be wondering why we crossed the Hudson River twice in each direction -- let's just say with the full-size car we rented, I was glad to have the wider, easier roads to drive on than the twisting, winding, tiny Taconic parkway.

Sunday, we hosted a geektastic brunch at home with bagels, eggs, bacon, donuts, fruit, banana nut bread, and just all manner of deliciousity. After our guests left, Doyce and I were able to really enjoy a quiet afternoon together -- not trying to run around and do a lot of things, or see everyone we could squeeze into a trip, just hanging out together. (And writing thank you cards!) We didn't even need to be in the same room. It was nice, and gave me a great glimpse into our life ahead.

Now... another week of work.


Saturday, September 15, 2007

Best ad EVER!

MJ, this one's for you. I finally found it.

Let the dance party begin.


Friday, September 14, 2007

Sometimes, this is the editorial process

Not usually, but sometimes...


Just something I read

And thought of a certain guy I know with a two-year-old. Genius, I say, genius!


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Clubbin' It

Right, I promised more, and here it is! (You'll note, devoted readers of the blog, that I am slightly avoiding a discussion of work. It's been a sucky kind of week, let's just leave it at that for now, shall we?)

So, earlier this week I promised a conversation about the club where the reception will be. And here we go!

When Doyce and I first got engaged and went up to my mom's to share the good news, we actually visited one of my pipe dream locations -- the Wainwright House in Rye, NY. When I was a teenager, I worked at a club as a counselor just down the street from the Wainwright House, and I loved the whole French Chateau feel of the place. It was right on the water, too, and the views were beautiful. The day after our engagement, when we stopped by on a tour of the area (I was showing Doyce all my childhood haunts and old jobs), there was a catering manager there on site giving another couple a tour, so he invited us to poke around a bit. The inside is gorgeous, with, unfortunately, high prices to match. There also wasn't one big central room where we thought we could fit the 140 people we had in mind to invite, unless we booked a tent, which I didn't want to do. Sadly, the Wainwright House was a no go.

In the next few exciting days and weeks, I did multiple internet searches for mansions in Westchester County, for historic houses, looking for a location that was off the beaten path, but still big enough -- and affordable enough -- to host our event. The Women's Club in White Plains, housed in the CV Rich Mansion, was beautiful, with a big, gorgeous ballroom. I was afraid, though, that the several rooms they offered for the cocktail hour would leave our guests too strung out (spatially, not emotionally). And honestly, was that giant ballroom going to be TOO big?

We also looked the Women's Club of Bronxville, which was a strong contender. They had a smaller, but I thought even more beautiful, ballroom, plus an entrance hall for the cocktail hour with floor to ceiling windows and striking black-and-white wall decorations (not frescos, but I can't think of the word). I loved this place for a while, and it was my top choice until the weekend that Doyce came back out to look at it with me, after two of my sisters, my mom and I had already paid it one visit.

On Doyce's next trip, though, we also went to the Pelham Country Club, where a family friend was general manager and had quoted a very very reasonable rate on the phone. The club was in a beautiful location, but I had been so set in finding something different, in really striking out and being, well, exotic.

I mean, it was a country club. How exotic could it be?

Turns out, it didn't need to be any kind of exotic, because I discovered just how much more important service and attention were. Not that the catering manager at the Bronxville Women's Club wasn't helpful, but she didn't know my family, didn't meet her spouse at my brother's engagement party as the club manager, Kevin, did. Doyce and I made our first visit to Pelham, then went to see the Women's Club again (well, again for me, the first time for him), and knew pretty quickly afterwards that Pelham was the place for us! It's in a beautiful location on a golf course, with a pond at the 18th green, next to the clubhouse, with a bright room for the main reception, and a beautiful space for the cocktail hour with several conversation nooks, a fireplace, and a bar that straddled both areas.

Seeing the club again, months later, picking out our linen and discussing table placements, I remain so pleased with our decision. The clubhouse isn't on a historic homes list, as far as I know, but after all, I want people to be looking at us, not the building!

Still, it's a pretty building. :)


I'll write more soon

But for now, my proposal wasn't shot down, nor was it unilaterally accepted, with all bells and whistles.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Cross your fingers for me, kids

The fate of my world (at least as it relates to work) will be discussed and hopefully decided in a meeting starting in about ten minutes.


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

What does Your Writing Mean to You?

My brilliant and talented (if too far away) friend Miss Midwesterly recently shared an essay she wrote for a writing grant, answering the question, "What Does Your Writing Mean to You?" In part, she wrote,
I am about the fine sense of gratification I get from the quick panicked scratch of pencil on cheap newsprint in a jotting of a thought in the middle of the night ("quickquick before it goes away"), or the swoop of liquid ink that expresses a note of thanks ("What a lovely housewarming—and an equally lovely home!"), or the banging of my fingers on the keyboard when I am particularly moved by something and have found a good turn of phrase with which to express each shade of the moment ("I stored his business card in my bag, where I stumbled across it often, by accident, on my way to look for my keys, or sunglasses, or wallet"). I am lucky and determined enough to choose a path that places an onus on me to share with others what I see, learn, and experience. Life comprises these moments, details.
It's a gorgeous essay, and I was inspired to answer the same question myself. I invite you to consider it as well!

For me, writing is about sharing. Sharing a world that I envision, or that appears to me in a burst of inspiration, sharing how one character's reaction to a situation may speak to others. As so much of what I write now is personal, though I yearn to get back to fiction, in all of my writing I share myself -- my thoughts, my dreams, my wedding plans -- and welcome comments from others. It is a kind of companionship, writing. Sharing words with others, we can each experience them, take them into ourselves, and see how they fit -- like trying on a pair of shoes in a store, buying them, and wearing them around indoors to see how they feel, careful not to scuff the soles by walking on hard pavement, but knowing that just by taking them into my home, into my closet, they're already a part of my life.

Words are meant to be read, to be heard, just as shoes are meant to be worn.

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I don't like lines

So, this past weekend I went up to Westchester on Sunday to meet with the general manager of the club where our wedding reception is going to be, and also looked in on the church (so pretty!). Pictures to follow, when I'm posting from home, but in the meantime, I thought I'd share part of the discussion my mom and sister and I had about timing of things on the wedding day, and that oh-so-formal tradition of the Receiving Line.

Short form? I don't love it. According to Wikipedia, the receiving line is a Scottish tradition, where the guests file past the bride and groom, introducing themselves. (I don't know how accurate that is -- I'd agree more with the later citation that it's an American custom.) Now, I expect to know everyone at my wedding. I don't want anyone to have to introduce themselves to me! Secondly, and more importantly, we've deliberately chosen to have a more casual cocktail reception rather than a formal sit-down meal because we hope and expect our guests to mingle with each other, and we want to be able to circulate among them and say hello throughout the reception, not just in the structured line. I just feel that a line often creates a bottleneck, either exiting the church, or getting into the reception.

Besides, I think we've struck on another idea. I like the Jewish tradition where the bride and groom spend some time alone after the wedding ceremony before the reception. Of course, with a ceremony at 1:30 and the cocktail hour starting at 3, there's not all that much time, not if we want to do pictures then as well! So, considering that we're going to be the first people out of the church (and now having seen the church, I think this will work!), we can whisk ourselves away to a little room, even just for five or ten minutes to be alone after the "I do"s. When all of the guests have left the church (with our wedding party asking them to stay near the doors), we can sweep out and do the big tossing of flower petals or blowing bubbles, or what have you! After that, formal posed wedding pics, then onto cocktails!

At the reception, even if we miss some (but hopefully not much) of the cocktail hour because of pictures, we'll be able to spend more time with our guests than a receiving line would allow.

Also, I spoke to my sister-in-law recently, who told me I wouldn't remember all the little details of the day, that they would pass in a blur, etc. etc. Honestly? I really hope not. But I think I'd be more likely to feel that way about the guests if they are just passing me in a line than if I can spend more time talking with them, dancing with them, and oh yeah, drinking with them.

So, count that as another wedding tradition I'm bucking!


Monday, September 10, 2007

For you trivia people out there

Before it was the MTA, it was the BMT and the IRT. What do those stand for?

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Sunday, September 09, 2007


Seen in the subway: A movie poster talking about a special FBI team, with the tagline on the bottom, "Trust No One.". What movie are you thinking of?

If you'd said "The X-Files," then you're like me. Instead, it's for the new Jamie Foxx/Jennifer Garner film "The Kingdom."

I can understand reusing music in different movies, but taglines? Yet another sign that Hollywood always repeats itself.


Thursday, September 06, 2007

TV Review, or, all about my clothes.

So, after the roomie's girlfriend watched "Top Chef" last night (while I pondered the fact that most of the comments made by the participants were the exact same as those muttered on "Design Star," barring only the change of words from "food" to "design," usually), she and I sat down to a sneak preview of Bravo's new show, "Tim Gunn's Guide to Style." Really, it was sneaky! The cable listing for Bravo for that hour only said "To Be Announced."

Anyway, unlike some people I know (Ali) who are ardent watchers of "Project Runway," I'm late to the whole Tim Gunn love fest, but I love a makeover show, so I was curious to give it a shot. Overall reaction? I'll just keep watching "What Not To Wear," thanks. Nothing is specifically said about how much money the makeover people get to shop with, and Tim kept giving away "gifts" like a Coach bag or black pearl necklace that seemed so extravagant. Also, considering that the candidates seemingly volunteer themselves, the woman on last night's preview episode, a 40-year-old hairstylist and mom from Long Island, seemed incredibly hesitant to give up her clothes. I can understand that attitude on WNTW, where people are volunteered by their friends, coworkers, or family members, but if you sign yourself up for a makeover, leave your hesitancy behind!

Tim (and his cohost Veronica, who left almost no impression on me, besides an orange residue from what seemed a bad fake-and-bake) were way gentle, leaving me looking for Stacy and Clinton to pop up with some hard truths. Yes, they called the Long Islander's clothes "slutty," but I missed the 360 degree mirror and the useful shopping rules.

The one thing I did like was Tim's list of essential clothing items every woman should own. How'd I do?

The 10 items on Tim Gunn's essential shopping list for women:
  1. Basic black dress -- I have not one, but two! My Audrey Hepburn-esque short sleeveless number, and a long silk crepe de chine 40s number from J. Peterman.
  2. Trench coat -- I got a short one at Marks & Spencer this spring. But technically, no, I don't have this.
  3. Classic dress pants -- Wearing them today, in fact! I love Banana Republic's Martin Fit, and need to go pick up another couple of pairs in different fabrics and weights. These are straight leg, low-waisted, pocketless trousers that are so flattering. And comfortable.
  4. Skirt -- Again, thanks to Banana I have a great grey pencil skirt that reminds me of the other Hepburn, Katherine, in such classics as Desk Set and Adam's Rib. I have another fantastic brown skirt that I used to wear almost daily, but it's now a little too big. Would love to replace it, as it has a fun flare at the hem I love.
  5. Blazer -- Can I count my black jacket for my BR suit? Tim would probably fault me on this, but I console myself that at least I knew enough to toss two blazers I bought a year or so ago that are way too boxy, and hit me in all the wrong places. I felt like a square in them, so off to Goodwill they go!
  6. Jeans -- I have these! Yay for Lucky Brand jeans, and the best $108 dollars I've ever spent on clothes.
  7. Classic white shirt -- This is one of my goals for "back-to-school" shopping. A nice, crisp, white button down, that isn't tailored for a guy, and yet still manages to close over my boobage. This may be difficult...
  8. Day dress -- I need some more of these for work, but I do have a nice black & white faux wrap dress I bought before the Frankfurt Book Fair last fall, that I still love. The "faux" is what's key in keeping the girls covered.
  9. Cashmere sweater -- Happily, yes. Again with the Kate Hepburn reference, I have several short sleeved cashmere sweaters, that I wear as often as I can.
  10. A comfortable alternative to a sweatsuit -- I count my black yoga pants from Old Navy, which I can pair with any one of a million t-shirts. When it's cold, I have a black pullover running top with thumb holes, that I love.
Bonus: an indulgent, trendy item -- Do my purple shoes count? Hell yeah!

How do you do?

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Wednesday, September 05, 2007


Another success story regarding a shopping quest, I'm delighted to say. This one was much shorter than my search for purple shoes.

As I mentioned, my sister C is getting married in November, and it's going to be a whole black-tie, formal kind of affair. Evening wedding, ballroom reception, the whole works. As is my way, I wanted to stand out a bit, so my guidelines for dress shopping began with no black or brown, but were otherwise pretty much WIDE open. I did consider looking for purple dresses, since I had the shoes, But I hadn't fixed on anything.

So, yesterday at lunch, I hit Bloomies. I grabbed a bunch of long dresses and hit the dressing room. Pretty quickly, I narrowed my search down to two dresses. First, this lovely strapless number from A.B.S.. I found it in purple, too. See?

The other option was very different, sort of drape-y, with a pretty open back, but also from A.B.S. This is it in blue. Here's me in it. There's some concern that the color is too light for a November evening wedding, but I think it's fine. Best part? Totally on sale.

But even on sale, it was a lot of money to spend. So I put them both back on the rack, and went back to work, having sent the two pictures to Doyce for his opinion. Well, it came in loud and clear. He liked them both. A lot. (Woot!) I showed the pictures to a few other people at work, too, noticing that the two colors were almost exactly the colors of my blog, and by the end of the day, I decided to run back to Bloomies, and if the sale dress was still there, it was a sign it was meant to be.

Well, it was! Hooray! The green dress is now happily hanging on my wall -- my closet being too low to handle the length. I still need to get the perfect piece to wear underneath, but I'll bring the dress to my bra lady, and see what she can find. After that -- I get to search for new shoes! Silver, I think. Fun!

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Work related

Oh, you hate your job? Why didn't you say so? There's a support group for that. It's called EVERYBODY, and they meet at the bar. —Drew Carey
I don't actually hate my job, but I do have job-related news. The oft-revised memo is now due to be received by the PtB on Monday. Cross those fingers again for me, if you will. I have my eye on some very sweet home office supplies from Tar-ghay.


Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Back to School!

The temps may be in the mid-eighties today, but I've got that back-to-school feeling. It doesn't matter that I haven't actually GONE back to school in 13 years or so, but come that first "school" day after Labor Day, I have a yen to buy new pens and paper supplies, reorganize my closets, and pick out a first day outfit. In lieu of actually starting a new semester, I'm taking the opportunity to set a few new fall resolutions.

Item 1: Get up early! I'm not talking hours early, but just a pledge to not snooze my alarm for an hour. Today, I only hit that button twice, and was up and in the bathroom getting ready by 8:30, with plenty of time to shower, dry my hair, do my makeup, and make a sandwich for lunch, and still got to work early! Woot!

Item 2: Back on the Wagon!
The Weight Watchers wagon, that is. I've been letting things slide, stuck on my plateau, or allowing ice cream because, hey, it's summer. No longer. I'm back to tracking my points, having a bowl of cereal for breakfast, not a bagel sandwich, and upping my fruit and veggies intake. I made a big pot of meatballs for dinner last night, and I have lots of leftovers for dinners all week, so I'm not tempted by easy (and high point!) takeout. I have 15 more pounds to lose, and I will do it.

Item 3: Gym time!
Just because the triathlon is in the past doesn't mean there isn't another coming up in a year. In combination with Item 2, I'm pledging to keep up my biking, swimming, and running, as well as the NIA classes I love, and add in my weight training. I'd love to not have to do any alternations on my wedding dress except for length, and I've got a couple of inches still to go!

So that's my plan. Are you doing anything special at the change of season?


Monday, September 03, 2007

Back Home

Caught a ride with my sister, her fiance, and my mom this morning from the Shore back into the city, all jazzed to get all my laundry done and be incredibly efficient, maybe even doing some cleaning, or sorting through stuff, or at the very least catching up on my DVR-ed tv shows.

Well, the laundromat is closed. And I just spend an hour reading up on people's blogs. So I'm not quite getting the rousing start to fall that I was planning on. Still, hours to go before I sleep, and all that.

After a long conversation with my sister about my move to Denver next spring, I've decided to see if I can't start putting a few more things in boxes and ship them early. Plus, as I get ready for my fall wardrobe, I'm sure there's some spring and summer stuff I can pack away. I may need to go back to Denver and get them for our honeymoon, but whatevs.

So, I'll go out for a walk and get a sandwich from the yummy bagel place, then come back here ready to do a bit of not-spring cleaning. By the way, MJ, I stole your vaccum cleaner. In case you were looking for it.