Bebe Shower + Impromptu Weeding


As if Saturday wasn’t fun-filled enough already…


…we got a surprise on Sunday that Bailey was really excited about – an impromptu visit by my parents to help us with our house, namely the yard.


But first, I headed out for Caitlin’s bebe shower.


Caitlin’s shower was at FABO, which was a gorgeous venue – so colorful!


The shower was put together so well – from the cool straws to the great refreshments. I really liked the game they played where Caitlin had to pull random baby-items from a bag and guess what they’re used for. I had fun guessing what they were used for, too, since I hadn’t seen most of the objects before. Hey, maybe if I attend enough baby showers, I won’t be quite so baby-clueless.


And do you see that hat on Caitlin’s head? Her mom made that baby-shower-themed-hat for her! I talked to her about how she made it, and she was so proud of her creation. It was really sweet and a fun touch to the shower.


After the shower, I headed back to the Chic house to help out in the yard. We pulled weeds and did basic clean-up. You know…stuff most people know but our house-clueless selves need guidance doing.


I treated my parents to dinner to thank them for their help. We went to Mama Ricotta’s.


The rolls were hard to resist. I definitely had a couple, dipped into their red pepper olive oil.


And for eats, we got 2 family-style entrees – this penne with chicken, broccoli and a lemon cream sauce. It came out piping hot with al dente penne. It was mouth-wateringly good (as in, my mouth is watering thinking about it while I blog…yum!).


The family favorite was angel hair with meatballs, which i really enjoyed, too.


My parents really loved the meal, which made me happy. It was the least I could do before they had to head back home for the night.

Reader question: What did you do this weekend? Anything fun?

Stress Dressing for Work {Outfit}


Apologies for being a bit MIA. It’s been a stressful week for me, but overall, I’m in good spirits.

The downs: This week has been extremely stressful at work. We’ve had some important projects get into full swing recently, and everyone on the team is a bit on the fritz. I’m still working with 17 Excel files and 5 databases open on my computer (yes, at one time). You knew I was a bit of a geek, right?

The ups: I’m getting back into the groove with Zumba. This was pretty much my second week of being back in the routine of things, and I’m more thankful than ever for my health. I’m hoping to continue my normal routine of Zumba about 3-4 times a week. I’m back to teaching 2 nights, and I’m loving it. Good health is such a blessing.


In outfit news, the work stress has me pulling more comfortable clothes to wear to the office. Take for example this slightly (ok, very) oversized gray sweater. Do you ever look at something in your closet and wonder why the heck you bought it? That’s what I’ve been thinking with this sweater. It’s pretty cute, comfortable, and machine washable/dryable (which I love for convenience purposes), and I even got it on mega-sale, but it’s just so darn big. I bought it in my normal size, but I think I should have gone down one. I like oversized sweaters that are meant to be oversized, but I think this one just looks a bit like it doesn’t fit.


I’ve also been questioning the sizes I purchase, just in the last couple months. My weight has fluctuated quite a bit over the last 10 years causing my size to range about 3-4 sizes, but while I tend to adjust my bottoms accordingly, I’ve tended to order the same size top. No clue why. I’ve started actually trying on one size smaller in tops just to see. As you know, the fit varies from style and brand, so it looks like I’m just going to have to be more careful and pay closer attention when I’m trying things on. This will suck for my new found love of online shopping. I really prefer trying things on, but I do love the convenience of online.



Black pants: Banana Republic (scored on sale and extra mark down for about $30)

Sweater: Ann Taylor Loft

Scarf: Urban Outfitters

Nude Wedges: J Crew (also seen here)

Purse: Sigrid Olsen

Pearl Studs: family gift (from my college graduation!)


In home & yard news, here are the last flowers of 2011 for the Chic house backyard. They’re so tall and pretty. I think my neighbor called the purple ones “weeds”, but I’m enjoying them.


And I’m waiting for these leaves to start turning tan, gold, red, and orange. Can’t wait…I love fall. :)


Thank you so much for reading! Hope you have a great rest of the week.


Reader question #1: Do you purchase any type of clothes in the same size every time?

Reader question #2: Do you dress more comfortably when you know you’re going to have a stressful day at work?

Reader question #3: What color are the leaves in your yard?

How to Relax for Free


One thing that’s really been helping me relax and get well has been so simple (and free!) – just getting outdoors, taking in the fresh Carolina air, and enjoying the natural beauty all around me.


I haven’t been interested in doing much over the last couple sick days (in face, I’ve barely left the house), but I did try to take a couple minutes here and there to just go in my backyard and check out how the plants are doing.


I’ve enjoyed seeing how the herbs my mom gave me are doing.


Watching how herbs from last year that I thought would die during the winter have come back full force.


Checking out how the plants I’ve not placed around the yard are doing. I hope they like their new home!

(my mom told me that my dad liked to plant the little blue flowers for his mom)


These two strawberry plants are awaiting a project this weekend. I’m hoping to find some strawberry pots for them.


But most of the plants I purchased with my mom at the farmers market are now in the ground and hopefully spreading their roots.


We have a lot of shady areas in the back yard, which makes plant buying a little more difficult. I love how the pink leaves on this plant bring in color without flowers.


My squash seeds are really growing now! I’m hoping to have squash I can actually eat in 2-4 weeks.


I’m hoping this baby lavender plant does well – there are a few lavender recipes I’ve been wanting to try!


And look here – future banana peppers!


My square foot garden – oh how I’m loving watching you grow and grow.


These tiny flower buds are forming on the tomato plants. I’m hoping for cherry and green zebra tomatoes in 1-3 weeks!


My tri-color green beans are coming right along. Only a couple of the seeds didn’t sprout, so I planted new ones. They’ll be up in no time.


A gorgeous lemon thyme.


And tarragon! We’ll see how everything does where I put it. *fingers crossed*

Sometimes, it’s so easy to get caught up in every day life and forget to pay attention to little details. But, there’s something so peaceful in just being outside, feeling wind blowing around you, hearing birds chirp. I’m really enjoying watching my plants grow and take shape…seeing flowers bud and bloom…watching seedlings develop fruits. Every day, I see a little something different. ;)

But, you don’t need your own garden or yard to take in nature. Go for a walk, look at your neighbors plants (the ones in public view, not the ones in their back yard! lol), notice the details in a single flower, visit a park. Get thee outdoors, breathe in that wonderful, fresh air, and get omm with nature.

How do you relax for free?

Get Well Eats


I’ve been under the weather still for the last couple days. *sad face* Thusly, my eats have been pretty boring. Here are some of the things I’ve been noshing on…


oatmeal…with that raw cacao I picked up awhile back!


Earthfare turkey burger, steamed broccoli, and onion rings (can ya tell hubby made dinner? lol)


A TCL staple – fried cage-free egg with rye bagel


Mom’s Get Well Soup (chicken and rice) and lots of hot tea.


Did I mention my Mom’s Get Well soup?


Oh and here’s a photo of the plants my mom and I picked up this weekend – lots of herbs and pretty plants.


And I’ve been working on a little something-something in the kitchen. Any guesses what it is?

What’s the one thing you eat over and over again when you’re sick? I think I eat my Mom’s Get Well Soup more than anything. You?

Flowers at the Chic House


Spring is really on the way and the flowers are in full bloom. Check out some of these gorgeous blooms!


We really lucked out the previous homeowner liked gardening so much.


We have so many flowers all around – azaleas


heirloom azaleas


heirloom tulips


things just keep popping up out of the ground.


Any day now it will be time to plant something new – my vegetable garden! Tomorrow’s looking good if I can take a long enough break from work. It is Earth Day after all!

Are you planning to do anything fun for Earth Day? Last year I planted my very first vegetable garden (click). I’m thinking it could become an annual tradition!

The Chic House Early Spring Garden + Yard – 2011


The weather has been stunning in the beautiful hills of the Carolinas.

I wanted to share some photos with you of all the natural beauty currently surrounding The Chic House.

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I’m astonished by all the amazing plants popping out of the ground this time of year.

Be sure to check out my Facebook page for more exclusive photos (click).

Have a great day everyone!

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