Woman’s Words Wednesday – Hilarious, Honest, Happily Single, Holly

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“If there’s one thing that’s sadder than being single, it’s settling. And I refuse to do it.”

I first met Holly Ann Phillips when I was working at Abercrombie & Fitch and the abercrombie kids store in the Mall of Louisiana.

This had to be circa 2006/7. “Post Katrina”, as the time after August 2005 has been dubbed by NOLA peeps, I took a managerial job with the “model-y” clothing store in Shreveport. I had never really been a collar-popping, layer-centric type who wore the brand, but I was stuck in North LA because my City was flooded, I needed a J.O.B. STAT, and you had to have a college Degree to be a manager at A&F.

Yes I did it for the salary (teeny, tiny salary) and health insurance, but I also knew, if I was going to have a job on my resume that said “Manager” and was my first after graduating, I was going to make the most of it and excel, no matter the industry or location.

I became very good at managing, training, and styling the store which involved all the correct folding, placement and presentation of the merchandise, and dressing of the forms (mannequins without limbs), so much so that when there was a fire in the back of the Baton Rouge location, I was sent to help re-do the store. Impressed by the job I did the first go round, I was sent again one holiday season to help failing standards and quitting managers. That’s when I met one of my all-time favorite gingers!

Holly worked in the kids’ store and was as fiery and energetic as her hair would suggest. She was easy to talk to, spunky, good at her job and pleasant to be around. Holly and I would talk a lot about relationships and it surprises me in no way that she has become a professional writer and blogs about her relationship life.

At that time in my life I had made friends with a guy who was studying to be a brain surgeon. We had met and hung out in Shreveport, so when he went back to his hometown in B.R., and I found myself working a few weeks stint at the Abercrombie locations, we decided to hangout again. Mc-Very-Attractive would visit the mall on occasion and bring me treats like cookies. Holly and I would talk about him being the kind of guy who would make a good catch: handsome, great job, did nice things.

The good Doctor and I did not end up together, though we remain caring friends, and he is now married with children…

I tell this story to introduce my single sister Holly, but also to give a glimpse of just one of the many wonderful men who have come, and gone, in my life as I remain single. And over 30. And completely OK WITH IT!

I give this Wednesday’s Woman Words to the lovely Ms. Holly Ann Phillips because her blog today said a million things I have BEEN thinking and saying to people for a WHILE now. I love the life I have lead, the adventures I have had, the men I have loved, and hated, and wished for, and screamed about, and remain dedicated to a friendship with, and I wouldn’t trade it for a second of being settled because I settled.

Here’s  Holly to more pointedly and wittily explain:

 “I don’t think that’s a question I can answer,” I told her. “What if I don’t find someone?”

I’m single, stop asking why.

on The Bitter Lemon by Holly Ann Phillips

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The pictures were from the trip to Cancun I just returned from…I felt inspired by Holly’s post. How did Holly’s post make you feel readers? I’m highly interested. I’m sure she is too so comment here and leave her some feedback.

To my single readers, in the face of negativity or confusion from the coupled-crowd, brush it off and keep doing YOU! Celebrate your

Sexy Single Self

Flashback Friday – Belated Birthday Buddies

Happy Birthday February 18th!  

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My birthday was Wednesday and I wanted to share a birthday-buddies shout-out then, however with the craziness of Mardi Gras happening the day before (that’s right for those who figured it out, I had an Ash Wednesday birthday this year)  and the love of my friends and parents taking me for birthday dinners I decided to make this one a #fbf, if even a short one 😉

I’ve heard that one’s date of birth is no accident and that your self is molded by that date, so I dug deeper into my birth date and found a few fun facts and similarities:

  • A fact I was aware of, I share a birthday with Mary I Queen of England [1516]. Though not the most popular monarch (she was known as Bloody Mary) she was legitimate royalty born of Henry VIII and Queen Catherine of Aragon. Mary, like me, was a Catholic and briefly brought Catholicism back to England. Her sister Elizabeth (you’ve probably seen the movie) brought the Protestant church back when she reigned.
  • After the Southern states succeeded the Union with the election of Abraham Lincoln as President, the Confederate States of  America met on February 18, 1861 and decided Jefferson Davis would remain their President and officially be elected to his 6th term in November. I’m a proud American but certainly have a soft spot for all things Southern.
  • I like comedy & musical theatre, and so did two other birthday buddies, George Kennedy [1925] who starred in the comedy movie series Airplane and Naked Gun & my first childhood crush John Travolta [1954] star of the classic movie-musical Grease! Perhaps this is why I would play leads in comedic roles in college, be a part of an improvisational comic troupe, continue to be involved in musical theatre with children and love to make my friends laugh daily!
  • I also love reading and a favorite from childhood, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn was published in the United States on my bday in 1885. “I’ll be your Huckleberry” 
  • Another female royal, Princess Maria Christina of the Netherlands is a birthday buddy [1947] and has two things in common with me; she has crowns and an awesome Godfather.  Now while my “Paran” isn’t as famous as hers was (Winston Churchill!) and my crowns are pageant crowns, I still say, wining!
  • And perhaps my FAVE Queen and OFFICIAL birthday mate (both in 1982) is Courtney Act! This beautiful Aussie and fellow blonde, became a favorite contestant of mine when competing on Drag Race and tweeted me back this morning to confirm we were, in fact, born on the same day! I think I got FABULOCITY just by sharing the day with her!

Clearly February 18 was a special day in history, and if any of my readers also share this magical birthday with me and all these people & events, then a Very Happy (Belated) Birthday to You!

And if we don’t share a Birthday, I hope you let your research

Be Bolstered By your Birthday!


Inspired my birthday I shared a bit for my Poesy page:

The Third Three

32 years around the sun, today the start of another one. Count the heart-burst highs & scarring lows, impossible. Renewing progress of growth, unstoppable.

Fresh roads to be traveled. Mark their path in the lines near my eyes. Deepen them with smiles, wash them with sorrow.

32 years around the sun, today the start of another one. Count the desires of change, impossible. Renewing strength of forgiveness, unstoppable.

Friendships, some gorilla-gluing even tighter. Use this sun-trip to touch the ones held loosely by thousands of miles of heartstrings.

32 years around the sun, today the start of another one. Count the hours of conversing, impossible. Renewing support of empathy, unstoppable.

For love to manifest, there is a demand for hope. Scrape it from the deepest, pure places of my heart, collect it in silence on my knees.

32 years around the sun, today the start of another one. Count the lessons learned, impossible. Renewing breath of the moment, unstoppable.

Afar and Away Alicia: A Letter to my Readers

Dearest Readers,

Writing you to say Hey! and sorry for going away without leaving you a note on the kitchen table…

The past few months have been stuffed with travel and celebrations. Appropriate to this time in my life, my world and weekends are filled with Weddings and Babies and celebrations of said nuptials and offspring. Well, my social world anyway. No my sweet readers, I did not secretly get married or pregnant in my absence 🙂

An informational on blogging I once read said to never apologize for lapses in one’s posting; but how can I not? As bloggers we ask our readers to validate our words with their time and honor our thoughts with relevance by considering them. So I thank every reader who has been with me so far and I thank each reader who will join me here.

I continued reading posts of blogs that I enjoy following, I just did not find the time I needed to put my own thoughts down. Likewise I found the “guidelines”  I had placed on myself for writing the blog had become “restrictions” so that some of the things I was inspired to write about were kept-for-a-later-date instead of flowing out in the moment I was driven to share. I was hindering my own writing and it had to stop.

I have made some changes to the site, deleting pages and adding inspirational spots.

  • Poesy (the art or composition of poetry, not to be confused with posey, a small bouquet of flowers): From a very young age I have enjoyed writing poetry, thoughts, sayings, etc.. My poetry, as poetry often does, comes from vulnerable and private places in my heart and brain, so I have been hesitant to share these words with many people. But, I figure if there was ever a time and place to do it, this would be it.
  • Keen (having or showing eagerness or enthusiasm): I started hearing and using the word Keen when I began dating my first boyfriend-from-abroad. He was a Kiwi and everything was “Fantastic” & “Keen”. The word has become one of my favorites and I want to share some of my favorite things with my readers on this page.

If you’ve stayed with me readers you may notice some changes, but I hope you still enjoy the content. If you’re just joining this alliteration party, I hope you too enjoy the content and come back for more. Comment, share, like, challenge, engage & I will appreciate and respond!

So as they say in our 49th state, the land I called home for one glorious summer,

“North to the Future”

Fall & Football

It’s the first cool Fall day in Louisiana & a huge day of SEC collegiate Football! Life is so good in the South!

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Preparing for a day of food & fun with friends (of which I will include in future posts)!

Maybe it’s a Southern thing, maybe it’s a Louisiana thing but today we will be made happy by a crisp breeze, smoked meats, huge pots of savory gumbo, craft beer, raucous tailgating, babies in school colors, boots & scarves, cheering & backseat coaching.

It bears repeating: today, life is so good in the South.

Thirsty Thursday – Bottles & Bubbles

I was inspired by an assignment in my Blogging University, Blogging 101 class to do a Gallery post and so I snapped a few pics of last night’s Kenner Food and Wine event at Chateau Country Club. I know this “Thursday” post is going out on a Friday, but since the event happened on a Thursday, I think I’m safe 🙂

Last night’s event was a mash-up of several areas of my life: held in the city I work in, attended by people I work with, hosted by the wife of the Mayor I work for, worked by friends of mine and friends I haven’t seen in years. Proceeds went to a regional foundation and  local restaurants and wine distributors offered unlimited  delectables and vino. Merriment was the order of the night and an amusing (albeit hot & muggy) time seemed to be had by all.

It’s the kind of event that’s happening all the time but can be easily missed by excuses of weeknight, other obligations, poor weather, etc. which is a shame because the excuses are never as rewarding as the attendance.

So here are a few (iPhone) pictures in hopes of inspiring you to attend a fun, neighborhood event and support local businesses, charities and people!

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Tables of wine lined the outdoor pool area. Tastings and info of all were provided by knowledgeable reps.

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Team Gleason glasses echoed the love of city & Saints in attendees’ hearts.

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The space was awash in a cool color palate of lighting.

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Friend and rep, Rene (right)

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Arguably the most popular table…the CHAMPS!

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I drank many glasses of Perrier-Jouët but when that ran out, this cuvee’ and rose’ were both excellent!

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The “almost” sister-in-law and wine rep, Celeste (right) *side note* I LOVE this girl!

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Exceptional example of smart social media branding. Clean, classy, simple! #KWFE

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The aftermath: abandoned tables and empty bottles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Make Merriment, Live-it-up with Locals, Care for Charities!

 

Readers, what’s a local or charity event you attended that you’re so glad you didn’t miss out on?!

 

 

 

Women’s Words Wednesday – Battling the Breast Bomb

10176194_10203967596003305_5942656178842187111_nIt’s October 1st which means it’s time to Think Pink, Go Pink, Touch our Ta-Tas, Save Second Base…

Kenner Ribbon

Employees of Kenner City Hall Photo: Barry Sprague

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We started a month long fundraising campaign today at my work; making a giant pink ribbon out of employees, donning our pink shirts and raising almost $2,000 for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer in only one day! It was…well it was inspiring.

 

More inspiring still…the women who were there that were quietly cancer survivors, or relatives of cancer survivors, or friends of cancer survivors. My grandparents and relatives have survived and died of cancers but that’s another time, another post. Today’s words belong to the women who have endured, who have fought and lived, who have believed at the end of hope’s road. This post is their testimony.

 

A few of the favorites I found:

 

When you’re told:

Sheryl Crow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Seuss

OK, technically a guy, but a worthwhile message.

When you’re in it: Melissa Ethridge

When wisdom comes from the funniest people and humor from the strangest places:

Christina Applegate Gilda Radner

Your triumphs: Robin Roberts
Olivia Newton John Giuliana Rancic

When it’s your loved ones:

Cynthia Nixon

The only women, and men who can understand the fight with breast cancer, or any cancer, are the ones who have gone through it and the ones who have loved someone who has. There are so many wonderful, inspirational quotes, memes, songs, or speeches that you may read or hear this month and a dozen or more ways to locally donate and volunteer. I suggest starting with finding a breast cancer survivor or supporter and hearing what they have to say. See where that conversation takes you.

And, please dear readers, start this month and

Brush up on Boobies!  

A helpful guide to self breast exams!

Bonus read: Sometimes it’s not a shared fight. Sometimes Breast Cancer creates silent suffering. Read Not Another Tall Blog ‘s poignant post about her mother’s decision to keep her cancer a secret.

Fun Facts Friday – B is for Baking

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Last Saturday morning I decided to combat the bleakness of the rains pummeling against my windows with the warms smells of baking and coffee.SAS.M3

 

 

Wild-berry "protein" muffins

Wild-berry “protein” muffins fresh out the oven!

I made myself some wild-berry “protein” muffins.  Now before you go giving me any undue credit, I used a mix…but, as I often do when making food, I did change up the recipe and add a few of my own ingredients. That’s usually easier to do with cooking than baking, given the exactness required more often  in baking recipes but I find muffins to be pretty forgiving.

 

Fun story: In high school Home Economics class my group put all the melted butter listed for the recipe in our orange muffin batter. While the muffins were baking we went to prepare the topping and realized the butter was meant to top the muffins with. There was a slight panic in the eyes of four plaid-clad young ladies! What happened to the muffins, you ask? They came out looking perfect! We melted more butter, topped them with zest and sugar and got rave reviews for our super moist creations! HIGH-FIVE!

For Saturday’s muffins I just substituted vanilla protein powder for the milk and added more spice with cinnamon and nutmeg.  I added some flax too, just for a bit more nutritional value.

Making Muffins

I love my well worn muffin tin. It reminds me of fond times chatting over morning muffins with roommates and my sister.

September is a new month and so it’s time for a new letter: B! Inspired by our new letter and morning muffins, our first FFF is all about baking.

 

Encyclopedia.com defines baking as:

 two culinary processes: cooking by dry heat in an enclosed oven and making up flour-based goods (breads, cakes, pastries) that are cooked by baking. By extension a baking day is devoted to making breads and cakes and includes the idea of a batch bake or tray bake made up in quantity for cutting into smaller pieces.

and lists the occupations of the trade as the baker and the pastry chef:

the baker using yeast to make breads and the pastry cook producing delicate pastries and cakes.

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Bakers and Pastry Chefs have a patron saint all their own; Saint Honore. Honore was a Bishop and, fittingly, French. When Honore became Bishop, a woman baking didn’t believe it and to prove he was indeed Bishop, a piece of her bread was placed in the ground and grew into a tree. Celebrate on May 16th by baking with fruit from trees, like a lemon pound cake!

Saw this helpful hint on Today I Found Out:

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And an found article from Wise Bread to help crack the code! Buy Better Bread!

Color Coding Bread

One of the first things I helped my mother bake, cake. My mom was incredible and made all the cakes for my siblings and cousins. She was a master of themes and icing, creating everything from an army battle field to a Care Bear.

Cakes come in all shapes and sizes now but were traditionally round and here’s why:

Cake Cake Cake

Find out about the history of cakes from Weekend Notes!

This symbolizes the cyclical nature of life, the sun and the moon, which is probably the reason why we have cakes during important events; highlighting that we are embarking on a new journey in our life-span.

Ancient breads were also round, typically fashioned into round balls and baked in shallow pans. In the 17th century, cake hoops made from metal or wood were increasingly used.

Now everyone together, you know the song…“Cake-Cake-Cake-Cake-Cake”

Know who the Guiness World Record holder for the world’s largest brownie is? All American Cooking does!brownies

It’s Something Sweet BakeShop in Daphne, Alabama who used  432 eggs, 216 pounds of sugar, 108 cups of flour, and 27 pounds of chocolate, 54 pounds of butter, to make the 234.2 pound confection! Sounds like just enough chocolaty deliciousness to satisfy my sweet tooth!

I hope these fun facts have preheated your desire-to-bake-oven! Click around on the links for more fun baking facts and tips and check back on SAS for upcoming baking ideas. Remeber, baking should be like these facts, fun! It doesn’t have to be from-scratch to count either. Slice-and-bake cookie? Yummy! Box cornbread? Yes, please! Cake from a mix? Make mine fun-fetti!

So my dear readers, whether you’re an oven  novice or a pro,

Blissfully Bust-out some Baking! 

What’s your favorite thing to bake or favorite baking tip? Let us hear it below!