Category Archives: Vanity Bonfire

It’s My Pajama Party And I Cry If I Want To

This is no secret: I love pajamas. I mean, REALLY love pajamas. If I didn’t care about winding up on the People of Walmart site, I would wear them everywhere. Cotton, flannel, modal, fleece….. love them all. I do have my favorites, but they don’t seem to care. They are patient, awaiting their turn to be donned and appreciated.

liesel-pj-legs

Yes, those are wine bottles and glasses on the PJs. Don’t judge me. Anyway, one thing I have noticed is my overabundance of PJs. They are the one item of clothing I seem to overlook when cleaning out my closet and dresser. Ok…. I overlook it because I can’t bear to part with them. But when you are digging around for a set to wear, and find the sets from high school still in the drawer… you know it is time.

So today I will knuckle down, grab a box of tissues, and start to cull the PJ herd. It will hurt. Some of those babies have been my besties through the worst of times, and the best of times. There’s the set that spent time with me in isolation at the hospital, and the set that saw me through the next door neighbor’s fire, and the set that was with me when my brother was born….

He will be 33 this year.

I said don’t judge me!

I better go rip this Band-Aid™ off before I end up crying my eyes out in a pile of PJs like a crazy woma– never mind. It’s too late and y’all know better 😉


Turquoise Dresses….So Exciting!!!

As I live and breathe, I will never understand the evul that women do.

Sitting at the airport, I had the opportunity to be roped into a rather unconventional conversation. I was sitting there, minding my own business, when two lawyers begin to talk about upcoming nuptials. At first I thought they were talking about marrying each other, but no, one has a niece getting married and has been trying to talk sense into her to reign in expenses. From what I understood, the young woman wanted to have swans waddling around the reception area and a cake designed by Duff Goldman.

I’m pretty sure she watched Father of the Bride, and paid no attention to Steve Martin.

I smiled to myself, thinking of the havoc the swans would unleash on poor, unsuspecting guests, when the lady lawyer turned to me and asked out of the blue what I thought about spending several hundred dollars on a bridesmaid gown. I choked on my coffee and said, “Excuse me?”, which in turn released a floodgate of drama. The gal in question wanted her bridesmaids to wear gowns by Badgley Mischka, and shoes to match. I gaped at her. Badgley Mischka??? Number 24 on my List of Things to Do Before I Die is “Own a pair of Badgley Mischka shoes”. It’s on the list FOR A REASON!! (Oddly, on my List of 100, four of them involve shoes:#12- Louboutins, #24- Badgley Mischkas, #38- own a pair made by Daniel Day Lewis, and #87- own maroon Converse All-Stars. That’s the only shoe item I have thus far achieved scratching off my list). For those that are fashion unconscious, Badgley Mischka is a design house famous for their wedding and evening gowns. And by that, I mean one of their gowns can go for five figures. The shoes tend to be far more affordable, in the $300-600 range. So for this gal to ask her attendants to spend over four figures on a bridesmaid gown and shoes is a bit extravagant. Trying to quell the ire of the lady, I did mention that at least the gown could be used again for formal occasions, but then the gentleman lawyer broke in with the most important observation ever:

If women hate being caught in public in the same outfit, why would you subject your attendants to the same fate?

Now, that’s pure genius right there. Personally speaking, if I spy someone wearing the same outfit I am, I see it as a reflection of good taste, not a reason to freak out and hide and wonder if it’s not too late to go home and don a sack cloth. I understand the reason for that tradition (dress similar to confuse evil spirits), but it hardly fits in this day and age. I was a bridesmaid fifteen times, and with two exceptions, the dresses made me look like I was sticking out of the frosting on a cupcake. And every time we attendants absolutely and unequivocally loathed them. If I didn’t know any better, I would say the brides made us wear those ridiculous tulle-tufted, pastel-colored, stiff-necked, bouffant-sleeved taffeta atrocities because they hated us. I much prefer the more relaxed convention some brides take now, letting the bridesmaids choose any gown as long as it is in a specific color or style. This way the attendants can stand out and still be a recognizable group without being clones. It also lets the attendants stay within their own budget, and not at the mercy of a bridezilla whose only thought is to have people comment about her extravagant princess fantasy. A word of advice to would-be bridesmaids: always ask what the bride plans for your dress, and don’t be afraid to give her input. She is your friend, and she will pay attention to make sure the day is good for everyone.

Unless she hates you. Then get ready to look like a turquoise cupcake 😉


Halloweary

Yes, it’s that time again. The time to stock up on good candy, get a funny costume, and prepare to criticize every parent that lets their underage daughter dress as a sexy fill-in-the-blank. That is my main irritation with this holiday: almost all the adult gal costumes have been made “sexy”: mummy, nurse, witch, princess, even E-BOLA. I usually make my kids’ costumes for that reason. Last year Little One went as the Red Queen, and the year before Eldest went as Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas. Best costume I ever made for myself was The Booze Fairy, complete with a crown made from mini vodka bottles. It sure was a hit, I can tell you that.

liquor bottle costumes

This year Little One suggested I go as the Red Queen. I nixed that idea. Instead, I will go as a Crazy Cat Lady, inspired by my friend, Cruel Wife. I figure that costume can keep me warm while I stand outside handing out candy.

I’ll be outside because otherwise the dogs will go insane with kids ringing the doorbell. I have to think of every last detail.

And no, there will not be any photos of the costume. I still have one shred of dignity and I shall employ it wisely. Besides, no one needs to see my humiliation at the hands of conniving kids. I’ll be sure to write about it, though 😉


When I Was Your Age…

While helping Son get squared away at school, we got acquainted with his peers, as well as his command. Walking around the school, talking with other students about campus life when some dudes were running around questing for fire was a lot of fun, and they were surprised at the many changes that had occurred since we had matriculated. The biggest change was of course, Bonfire. And then it happened.

“Back when I was your age….” I sighed, and stopped.

Oh. Dear. GAWD!!!

I keep catching myself saying that phrase more often now, along with “back in my day”. I’m not even 50 years old and feel the need to have a shawl and a cane at my disposal when I say those phrases. Little One comes up to me to ask if she can get some high heels for a dance and I spew it out like an incantation. “Back in MY day, we wore flats and LIKED IT!!” Never mind she has flats and sneakers. I have to fly off the handle like some deranged wild hag. Yesterday I was at the grocery store and a young gal asked me where to find the wine mixer cocktails. I asked her what those were and after she explained, I said, “Back in my day, we called those wine coolers”, to which she replied, “why??” I told her to check on the aisle across from the beer fridge and departed, feeling my hair turn a whiter shade of appalled.

That’s it. I am NOT going to say those phrases anymore. I refuse to go down the path of my forefathers in this regard. From now on I will be more mindful of being repetitive. I will strive to be a bit more worldly as I impart my wisdom to the younger crowds.

Henceforth, I will say:”When I was very, very young….”

Because that makes me sound like a wise storyteller, and not like a sour, prickly crone 😀


I’m a Jewelry Jinx

I’m one of the most minimal people y’all will ever know. About the only constant piece of jewelry I wear is my wedding band. But like a magpie, I do love, and I mean love to own bling. And mostly the fashion stuff. Who doesn’t love a huge neon pink rock on their finger, right?

That’s why the Ring Pop lollipop is so popular, my friends.

Anyway, like all women I have my favorite jewelry lines. Depending on the occasion my taste in bling changes. If I have a formal to attend (and those may be in my near future again, much to my feet’s chagrin), I tend to pick very bold pieces. If I’m going to a tea, I favor more whimsical items like flowers. If I’m going to lunch with Hubby, then I opt for just earrings. Even if the occasion is cleaning the bathroom, I do wear something blingy, like a tiara. Don’t judge me.

kirks folly dragonfly necklace

A few weeks ago, I was shopping for upcoming birthdays and decided to get my nieces some pretty fantasy jewelry. They loved my dragonfly necklace and I thought it would be nice to get them similar necklaces. Kirks Folly™ is my favorite jewelry for whimsy. So I go to their website…. and there is a “Thank You” posted to all their customers for a great 35 years. Undeterred, I go to QVC, and find it GONE!! As if this wasn’t bad enough, my favorite jewelry company, Lia Sophia™, declared bankruptcy a few months back! I’m in a total panic now. I do a search for Nolan Miller’s line, and….. gone. Kenneth Jay Lane? Discontinued. And with the passing of Joan Rivers, I worry that her line will also go the way of the dodo. I love her bee pins, and I am angling for her grape cluster pin before they discontinue it.

Now I have to go shop around for whimsy. Again. Which is fine since shopping is one of my gifts.

I just hope that Lolita™ never, ever retires.


But Wait! There’s More!

As most of y’all know, the word “gullible” doesn’t exist in my dictionary. I am prone to be trusting. Sometimes that’s a good thing, and sometimes it’s not. This can be a bad thing with people, so I try to be on my guard as best as I can manage. But it is especially bad when it comes to….. commercials.

Cindy Crawford with some new skin care? I want to rush out to get it.

New ceramic cookware? Sign me up!

A new shampoo made from the tears of alpacas?? GOTTA HAVE IT!!!

I do draw the line at the Jockey™ custom bra dealio, though.

Seriously, I am very susceptible to that crap. Luckily there’s the Internet. I have to force myself to look up information on every blingy thing that catches my eyes. And yes, I do mean “force”. Sometimes the Internet is a huge time suck and the next thing I know it’s dinnertime and the kitchen still has the morning dishes in the sink. So I try to limit my time on the laptop. Shut it, I typed “try”. Advertising has com a heck of a long way since the Tootsie Pop™. And the fact that computer graphics are used willy nilly doesn’t help much, either. Seriously, Slim Jim™ jerky sticks do NOT make for a good rope. Trust me on this.

I was hoping that the older I got, the less gullible I became. Sigh…. fending off ageing makes one far more vulnerable to this crap. I should give up and let Nature finish the furrows on my face. But not until I try that new stuff from Neutrogena™ 😀


Women, Handbags, and Shoes

I took Little One shopping for clothes this past weekend. Seems she is growing and I can no longer ignore the fact that she is not a little girl. That meant taking her shopping to places were I like to shop.

For myself.

Don’t freak out. I restrained myself. I didn’t get anything.

Ok, I got ONE shirt.

And PJs. Stop judging me!!

Moving on, she got quite the haul: jeans, shirts, sweaters, camis, and PJs (she’s my mini-me, after all). She was very amiable to my advice for once, until it came to getting accessories of any kind. It was like she became a burro. Seriously, THAT stubborn.

Me: You should get a nice purse to use in high school, honey.

Mini-Me: Why? I don’t like them. Besides, I think policy is changing to all-clear bags.

Me: What did you say??

Mini-Me: All-clear ba–

Me: No, before that!!

Mini-Me: I don’t like purses.

Me: WHERE DID I GO WRONG???

She just rolled her eyes and laughed at me. But that got me to thinking (I do that on occasion, you know). Why are most women so hung up on purses, and shoes as well? Think about it: they are utilitarian items that we take to fashion extremes. Shoes are mainly used to protect our feet, and purses are used to carry stuff we need that we can’t fit in pockets easily. That’s it. Most men have under four pairs of shoes. But not most women. It’s like a drug. You get one pretty pair, and you just HAVE to get another, and another, and another until your closet looks like Payless™ puked. And the same for handbags! Witness what happened to me, remember? It’s like a moral imperative. And as I thought for the reason as to why we are so enamored of such accessories, I finally came to a not-very-flattering conclusion:

We buy the purses and the shoes in order to justify purchasing the outfit.

Tell me I’m wrong. Someone, PLEASE tell me I’m wrong!!

Because the shirt I bought this weekend really goes well with my new sandals, and I’m hoping I’m not that shallow 😀


Crash and Burn

Last night, Eldest requested a favor from me. She asked me to have the oil changed in her vehicle because A) the check engine oil light came on, and 2) she was working through the holiday weekend and would have no chance to do so. Being a wonderful mom, I took the van in and had the oil and brake fluid changed.

I go the extra mile. Sometimes.

Anyway, I am in the waiting area, minding my own business as I play Words with Friends (looking at you, Mitchell), when a young gentleman decided to strike up a conversation. He was very well-mannered, with a nice drawl and looked to be about 26 or so. I am a horrible judge of age, but he was definitely way younger than I am. And I was way unavailable, apparently to his chagrin. It was a nice if odd stroke to the ego, I must admit. But no matter how high the feeling, eventually you crash back down. And so it came to pass after I got home.

Me: So, this young man was hitting on me at the Pennzoil place.

Hubby: Really?

Me: Yep, even dressed like this (sweatpants and shirt) and with no make up on. I haven’t even shaved my face yet.

Hubby: Did it make you feel good?

Me: Well, I was wigged out more than anything, to tell you the truth.

Hubby: Guess I shouldn’t have spent the money, then…

Me:…………………………………………………………..

Ego suitably deflated while laughing hysterically. If you can’t poke fun at yourself, you aren’t living right. As an aside, his little barb gave me the impetus to go to the outlet mall.

Who’s laughing now? THIS GAL 😉


Justification in Circles

Sometimes, I’m amazed I don’t throw my back out when I try to justify my logic.

Yesterday I went to the outlet mall in search of a gift for my sister-in-law, and a Mother’s Day gift for my mom. It was a gorgeous day, and I was on my own so I didn’t feel rushed by anyone. Not that Hubby ever rushes me while shopping, but I do want to take his feelings into account. The kids’, not so much. Anyway, I had recalled that there was a Coach™ outlet store, and my mind made a quick calculation:

Handbag + Mother’s Day = Happy lady

Eh, works for most women, yours truly included. Women are all about the accessories. You know why? Because it gives us the excuse to go shopping for the outfit to match. Ask any woman. Accessories are a gateway drug to the closet. So with that in mind, I go over to the store in search of a handbag for my mom. And I am quickly overwhelmed. Seriously, I have no idea what to get my mom. Every woman has different criteria for her handbag. For example, I need inside pockets for my phone, glasses, and change. My mom prefers a large roomy inside to having myriad pockets and compartments. But they have a clearance section and that’s where I head to do my shopping, because THAT is every woman’s criteria.

I find a couple of handbags that may please my mom: a hobo-style with room enough for a kitchen sink, and a smaller tote style handbag that she can use for church and other social events. I call my sister to ask her which one I should get mom. Hilarity ensued.

Me: One is like your hobo but tan, not pink, and the other is smaller like for church.

Sis: Why are you wanting to buy her a purse??

Me: Doesn’t she like purses?

Sis: I already got her a Coach™ purse.

Me: YOU DID??

Sis: Uh, you were with me…

Me: *sighs*…. what am I supposed to do now?

Sis: You can buy yourself one.

Me: Hm…but I can’t decide!

Sis: Good luck with that!

Here’s the thing: I don’t own any fancy purses save for two. Ironically, one is by Coach™, given to me almost twenty years ago by my late brother-in-law, Draco. And guess what?? I have my niece’s wedding to attend. I NEED A NEW BAG!! But I still couldn’t decide. Apparently my dilemma was obvious to the salesguy, because he sauntered over to let me know the clearance section was on sale for an additional 40% off. So I did what any sane woman would do.

coach bags

AND the wallets were on sale, as well. Don’t they look good against my pots??

You may be asking what I will be doing for my mom instead. I have a back up plan. Well, I usually have a few back up plans just in case. She may not get her gift by Mother’s Day, but better late than never, right?

At least I hope so 😀


How to Have a Spa Experience at Home

Some of y’all know, I am a fan of bubble baths. So I thought I would take the opportunity of sharing my tips for a successful spa day at home.

Dog_Bubble_Bath

First, make sure no one is about to run the dishwasher or the washing machine. Cold water is not your friend. Unless it’s 113* F outside, and only if the cold water has fermented hops in it.

Second, choose the aromatherapy. You can opt for bubble bath, bath oil, candles, whatever makes you feel happy. Be advised that bubbles hinder you when reading, oil makes the tub slippery, and candles can be hazardous to long hair. All three together is only going to end in tears and fried hair.

Third, secure the premises. Sure, locking the front and back doors is fine, but I am talking about securing the bath from pets and kidlets. Nothing more distracting than having to fight your sheltie for bathtub acreage while a kid is asking to help bathe the four-legged sister.

Fourth, keep your robe and towel handy. Nothing worse than taking a hot bath while slathered in a facial mask, only to find that your towel is nowhere near, and your eyes are shut from the sweat having melted the mask down your eyebrows, making you trip out of the tub and faceplant on the carpet.

Fifth, and most important, do not take a single glass of wine into the tub. Bring the bottle. You will find that time really does stand still and there is only so much reading of a crappy novel before you want to drown away the bad taste of some idiotic damsel in distress over a broken nail. Bonus: it helps drown out loud pets, loud kidlets, and loud hubby.

I hope these tips help y’all to have a nice relaxing spa experience at home. If all else fails, you still have the wine 😉