Wednesday, July 25, 2012

38 Days, 12 Hours From Right Now

...yep, I am on the countdown. Countdown to what, you ask? The first Alabama college football game of the 2012 season! 

We are currently making plans to visit Dallas and attend the season-opener: Alabama vs. Michigan on September 1 at 7pm. This game will be played at Cowboys Stadium. Of course, I'm extra excited about that because the Cowboys are my favorite NFL team (too bad, they don't have a home game in Dallas that weekend - that would have been too good to be true). 

If any of you are reading from the DFW-metro area, do you have any recommendations for me? I haven't been to Dallas in several years.

Are you looking forward to college football season? Who is your favorite team? Now I'm working on my wardrobe - look for a fun post coming up soon on "Game Day Dressing". 

Have a Wonderful Wednesday! 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Blog Housecleaning

Hello, Shopaholics! Wow - what a Monday around here. I hope your day went well - and was relatively calm for a Monday!  

Over the next week, I will be doing a bit of blog "housecleaning". Lately I have noticed that my blog roll needs some updating. If you are a blogger and reader of Shopaholic In Alabama, and want your blog included in my blog roll, please comment (with your blog web address) and let me know you'd like to be included. In return, I would like to respectfully request that my blog is also included in your blog roll! :-) I will also be removing any links to blogs that don't have Shopaholic In Alabama included in their blog roll. 

This has been a tough step for me to take. However, I've noticed recently that many of my fellow bloggers don't have my blog listed in their roll. I've always thought the blogging community was pretty tight knit and everyone looked out for each other - even though we all have different styles, different likes and dislikes, and different vibes and content on our blogs. 

I've met so many kind people over the years that I have been writing Shopaholic In Alabama, and a result I have grown and learned so much. It has been a true pleasure and I plan to continue for many years to come. For those relationships and friendships, I am truly thankful.

To my loyal readers, I love you all - even when you don't comment! HA! For those who comment often (not just on giveaway posts), thank you! Comments are the only way I know I'm not out here talking to myself. Sometimes I do it does make you a little sad to pour your heart and soul into a post, and not have many comments. 

Here's to a great rest of the week! 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Salt Water Saturday: Tragedy in Colorado

In my lifetime, there have been many tragedies in American history - on American soil. Some were acts of random violence, some were pure accidents, and others were acts of terrorism. With all of these events, I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when I heard the news. 

From the shootings in Columbine, to the bombing in Oklahoma City, the Space Shuttle Columbia blowing up over Texas on a Saturday morning, to the 9-11 disaster in NY, DC and a field in PA...none of these directly happened to me, but all hurt my heart as if they did. 

Today we are all hurting for the people of the Aurora and Denver metro area. Today we all hurt as Americans. We wonder - what drives someone to be so evil? How could a person - a fellow American citizen, at that - want to harm others in such a horrible manner? The answers are never clear. Sure - it's easy to say the person who allegedly committed this horrible act of violence was crazy. But - was he crazy? Or was he motivated by other factors? These are the things we may never know, and we certainly will probably never understand. 

At times like this, when one lives far away from the disaster area, we tend to feel a little bit helpless. And wonder "what can we do to help"? And more than that - if we send $$ to a cause, do we really know the $$$ will make it's way to those who need it the most?

Last night, I ran across the "Thrive With Confidence Foundation" after reading an article on the Huffington Post. This group is putting together a community gathering, scheduled for tomorrow (Sunday, 7/22/12) at the Thrive Community Recreation Center in Aurora, CO from 1-5pm MDT. They are looking for donations of bottled water, juices, soft drinks, and snacks for the community gathering. The community is getting together to share their feelings and unite in the wake of this tragedy, and begin the healing process. You can visit their Facebook page HERE. Businesses such as Pepsi, McAlister's Deli, Panda Express, and many others have generously offered their support. 

For those of us who aren't in the area, and can't be a part of the gathering - there is a way we can contribute towards the healing process and let the families of those affected know we are thinking about them. The community center and the creator of this event are collecting greeting cards and will be distributing them to the families. What a great way to show our support by sending a few cards. Also, this is a wonderful activity for your children - have them create cards and send for distribution. I am listing the address below:

Thrive Community Recreation Center
Attn: Brad Askren
15528 E. Hampden Circle
Aurora, CO 80013

Of course, if you're reading and are from the area - I know the organizers would appreciate your support tomorrow! If you own a business and arrive with a donation, they would greatly appreciate it. If not, just show up and stand united with others in your community who are hurting.

We will never understand why this happened, but this much I do know. There are no guarantees in life. Live every day as if it could be your last. Hold on to those you love, and tell them you love them. Don't assume they "know" - it might have been a while since you last told them. 

With all of my love, prayers and support for everyone in the Aurora area...let the healing begin. 

Friday, July 20, 2012

My New $10 Toywatch

Sometimes, it pays to be home sick! 

Yesterday morning I was jolted into reality by the noise of some very strong storms. Lightning, thunder, and rain blowing sideways. I was a little disoriented because after all, I had taken a heavy duty pain pill to get some sleep the night before. (Lortab #10, anyone?). At any rate, I woke in a fog and decided to grab my laptop and stay in bed for several more hours - and hopefully go back to sleep. 

When I logged on to the computer, I noticed that Rue La La was in the middle of another "Final Sale" and Toywatch was one of the brands included. Long time readers will remember that last March, I purchased my first Toywatch (blog post HERE). My original watch is pink and it's plastic. I have worn that watch so much, and I get compliments on it all the time. I have long wanted another Toywatch in a different color, and have been patiently waiting on just the right deal! 

The bright green "jelly" Toywatch was on sale for $49.90 (retail price $195). Mind you, the Jelly watch isn't nearly as fancy as my pink one. For starters, it's a lot smaller. It also doesn't have the crystal hour markers, and it's not the heavy plastic. However - I had Free Shipping and $40 in RLL credits, so this watch was mine for the bargain basement price of only $9.90! 

As soon as I had that order confirmation, I closed the laptop and went back to sleep. I slept blissfully until noon. Nothing like paying less than $10 for an almost $200 watch to help you sleep! 

Do you have a Toywatch? I'm still coveting the white one with the Mother of Pearl dial, like the one Sandra Bullock sported in "The Blind Side". You know, like this one...

TGIF - I'm back to work today and trying to gradually recover from my sickness. Thanks for all the well wishes regarding my Nanny, I appreciate all your kind thoughts! XO

Thursday, July 19, 2012

It's Been A Rough Week, Y'all

You might have noticed - I've been absent around these parts for several days. It's been a rough patch, starting last week. 

My 86-year old Nanny had a mastectomy last Thursday. They removed one breast and a dozen lymph nodes under her arm. The cancer was in the breast, and additionally had spread to several of the lymph nodes. She was already in a precarious health state after falling several months ago, and constantly fighting almost debilitating rheumatoid arthritis. Her arthritis has been awful for so many years that her hands, fingers, toes, feet - they are deformed. (there is no polite or nice way to put it). I'm not sure how she has dealt with that constant pain, and then to have to face breast cancer - surgery and possible treatment - at her age and with everything else working against her. It all seems a little unfair. 

Nanny is now resting at home and trying to recover from the surgery. I spent last weekend with my family in Mobile, trying to help out. After working all last week myself - training for a new job and keeping up my current job - I was wiped out already by the time Monday came around. Then - as luck would have it, I got sick myself. Not just feeling a little bad, but hard core, in the bed sick. 

This afternoon, I'm finally starting to feel like I will live. You guys know - I don't normally discuss anything but fun stuff around here - but I didn't want you to wonder where I'd been! I have some fun posts planned and will be back to sunshine, fashion, and fun - starting tomorrow. 

I'm going back to work tomorrow. I'm not 100% recovered, but I can't stand being at home for another day. 

Hope your week has been good so far! If you're so inclined, please say a little good wish or prayer for my Nanny! She needs all the help she can does my Mother, who is her primary caregiver. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Salt Water Saturday: Skinnygirl Pina Colada

It's well documented that I love my Skinnygirl Margaritas and White Cranberry Cosmos (originally blogged HERE and HERE). 

Last weekend, I was thrilled to find the new Skinnygirl Pina Colada at the Publix store near my office. For some unknown reason, these products tend to arrive in Florida faster than Alabama. It must have something to do with distribution? At any rate, Publix had two bottles left on the shelf --- and I bought them both! 

We enjoyed them over the weekend while at my parent's island home, and I must say I love the new Pina Colada flavor. My DH and Father both said they were "watered down" - but then again, they weren't frozen and heavy pina coladas that taste like ice cream. HA! They are light and refreshing, definitely best served super cold and with a slice of pineapple. 

I also noticed that Skinnygirl has added flavored vodkas to their offerings. Tangerine, Island Coconut, Cucumber and Bare Naked are the available flavors. Now I want to try the Island Coconut, mixed with Diet Coke of course! 

Are you a Skinnygirl cocktails fan? Which one is your favorite?

Who else thinks Bethenny Frankel is genius? Yes, I know - she sold the company quite some time ago and made a gazillion dollars. Still - I wish I'd have come up with this idea! 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Shopaholic Math

Sometimes, it's the "little things" that make all the difference...

You might be surprised to know that I'm a little "thrifty" when it comes to certain expenses. For instance, I won't bat an eyelash over the cost of a new dress or pair of shoes - but almost refuse to purchase an item at the grocery store that isn't either a) on sale or b) I have a coupon towards. Go figure! 

This topic comes up often at work. Earlier this week, we were discussing the cost of buying lunch out vs. bringing lunch from home. I'm in the "bring lunch from home" club. In my experience, it only takes a few minutes (5-10, tops) to throw together a sandwich, fruit and something crunchy (Sun Chips, anyone?). If I'm really pressed for time, it's a Lean Cuisine or Healthy Choice meal plus a snack. I've found that bringing my lunch saves time because I'm not running out looking for food, calories because I'm not eating as much junk/fast food, and $$$. 

My Shopaholic Math: 
    Cost of lunch:                      $7 day (conservative estimate)
    Work days per week:            5
    Weeks per year:                   52

    Math: $7 x 5 = $35/week x 52/weeks in a year = $1,820

    Savings = $1,820 annually = New Louis Vuitton or Gucci Bag, anyone?

Talk about putting expenses in perspective! HA! 

Tell me about your Shopaholic math! 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

New Jumbo Agenda from Lilly Pulitzer

Who else was excited to see the Jumbo size agendas from Lilly Pulitzer by Lifeguard Press, new for 2012-2013? I was thrilled to see my favorite agenda offered in an 8.75" x 11.25" size. Call me silly, but I like my agendas, notebooks and books to "stack" properly and the smaller agendas just don't quite fit the bill. 

Now - my only decision is which print to order! This Jumbo agenda only comes in two prints - pictured above is "Tiger Would". I love the pink and green color combination with the tigers, and personally believe you can never go wrong with pink and green! 
The Jumbo size agenda is also available in the "Getaway Garden" print pictured above. Set on a navy background, this beautiful floral print would look fantastic year round. Both are priced at $33 retail, and include stickers for your calendar. (I always use any leftover stickers on packages that I ship out to friends, family, items sold online, etc. They make a plain package fun!)

I love the feel of a new agenda with a clean slate - half the fun is filling it up with social engagements, birthdays and days off. Even a doctor appointment seems a little less mundane when listed in your Lilly agenda. :-) 

You can get your new Jumbo agenda from Lilly Pulitzer online, or at select Via stores. The Pink Pelican in Huntsville has them available online and is one of my personal favorites! 

Which print is your favorite? Have you ordered a new agenda yet?

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Southern Tide Giveaway Winner

Please join me in congratulating the winner of the Southern Tide Giveaway! "JulesTX" - you are the lucky winner with the following comment:

Just "liked" you on FB.

JulesTX - please email me ( with your name, address and choice of beach towel color so I can provide the information directly to Southern Tide. Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway, and for reading Shopaholic In Alabama. I hope you've all had a fantastic holiday weekend! 

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Salt Water Saturday

It was the day after the 4th of July. I was the only one at my parent's island home who had to go to work. Everyone else played on the boat all day - here are the results! 

My husband, father and brother in law went deep sea fishing, about 30 miles south of Dauphin Island, AL. These are trips I normally do not miss, so I was sad about that. However, we are planning to have a fish fry tonight so at least I'll be able to enjoy the fruits of their labor! 
                      Hubby with two nice Red Snapper he caught
           My Father with a Cobia and Red Snapper he caught
              Brother in Law with my nephews and their dog

Last but not least, here is my favorite picture of the day. The husband insisted they wait to clean the fish until I came in from work, so I could "see them". HA! So we were on the dock taking pictures, and asked my Father to take one of me and him with his big Red Snapper. Our nephews are hilarious and they wanted to get into the picture, and their dog followed them. The dog just makes this shot, clearly he wanted a bite of that red snapper. 

Today we are heading out to a little private beach off the coast of Dauphin Island, and I'm hoping to work on my tan! How are you spending your Sunday?

p.s. Tomorrow the winner of the Southern Tide giveaway will be announced. And don't forget to check out the Jules Reid blog post HERE for details on how you can win a Virginia Tunic worth $295! 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Today, We Celebrate Our Independence

Today, we celebrate our independence on the 4th of July. 

It might sound silly, but the speech given by fictional President Whitmore (Bill Pullman) in the movie "Independence Day" always stirs my heartstrings. The address was given to United States Fighter Pilots before going into battle with the enemy, and is widely regarded as one of the best inspiration speeches in "disaster movie" history. 

The speech transcript and video clip is below. Although we are not fighting a war against aliens right now (thank goodness!), there are many men and women protecting our freedoms and our way of life. July 4th is the celebration of our national independence. Please enjoy the day and celebrate safely! 

Good morning. In less than an hour, aircraft from here will join others from around the world. And you will be launching the largest aerial battle in this history of mankind.
Mankind -- that word should have new meaning for all of us today.
We can't be consumed by our petty differences anymore.
We will be united in our common interests.
Perhaps its fate that today is the 4th of July, and you will once again be fighting for our freedom, not from tyranny, oppression, or persecution -- but from annihilation.
We're fighting for our right to live, to exist.
And should we win the day, the 4th of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared in one voice:
"We will not go quietly into the night!
We will not vanish without a fight!
We're going to live on!
We're going to survive!"
Today, we celebrate our Independence Day!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Beachy-Chic: Jules Reid Style

Can you remember the last time you saw a designer's pieces for the first time and thought "oh my goodness - that is amazing"! That recently happened to me when I discovered Jules Reid. Her designs are, in a word, stunning. 

The Jules Reid line is a perfect compliment to a beachy-chic lifestyle and her pieces are so versatile. Whether you are sunning poolside, enjoying a glass of wine on the sailboat at sunset, or having dinner with friends inland - rest assured, you will find a piece of Jules Reid that is comfortable, appropriate and beautiful. And the good news: you will not be dressed like everyone else. The brand was created in 2010 when Jules broke tradition by leaving her career as a young Wall Street power broker. Jules had a dream of owning her own interior design firm. Her eye for design, mix of color and bohemian chic style quickly made her a favorite brand with the well traveled - and the rest, as they say: is history! 

Jules Reid has been featured in many publications, including but not limited to The Washington Post, Travel + Leisure, Lucky, and Town & Country. As you can see from Jules personal style in the above pictures, Jules wears her designs whether day or not. Her items are in stores from coast to coast, and can be found in international locations such as Brazil, Dubai, England, Switzerland and many others. However, the brand's distribution is still limited enough that not everyone will have a piece of Jules Reid...who knows, you might be the one to start a new trend in your circle! (and - be sure to read all the way to the end of this post for your opportunity to WIN your very own piece of Jules Reid - that means "free")!!!
From the Spring/Summer 2012 collection, the Virginia Tunic is the best selling item in the Jules Reid line. This tunic is available in nine different prints and trims (you can view them all HERE, the above print is Lavender Owl). With so many stunning color and print combinations, it's almost impossible to pick a favorite! 
Wouldn't the Virginia Tunic in Roundabout Black be a perfect option for work - or play? You guys know me by now - I do love the tunics. I have quite a well-documented obsession with a finely made tunic and wear one to work several days out of the week. Even the DH looks at me and says "did you buy a new tunic"? HA! Wonder what he'll think if (when!) a fresh new crop of Virginia tunics begin to arrive?

And a little bit of Shopaholic Scoop for you - the Virginia Tunic pictured above is part of the new Resort Holiday Collection that is coming out in November. However, it will be available for pre-order sooner. 
Another one of my favorites from the Spring/Summer 2012 line is the Harrison Shift Dress. (view on Jules Reid website HERE). A shift dress is always a great wardrobe option - they look fantastic on all body types and are easy to wear. The Harrison was featured in Glamour's March 2012 issue and has been another wonderful seller for Jules. I love the Tootsie Roll print featured above. 
The Jaipur Dress is featured in 100% silk knit jersey and falls 2" above the knee, making it appropriate for so many occasions. (view on Jules Reid website HERE). The 3/4 sleeves will keep us warm in a cold air conditioned building, and the diamond shaped opening above the bust is just-sexy-enough to show that summer tan without feeling too exposed. The JR pink logo print is one of my favorites in the 2012 spring/summer collection - I believe that color combination is universally flattering. 
How darling is the Rosie Romper? (view on Jules Reid website HERE). The noise you hear in the background? It's me - whining because I don't have the figure to pull off this look. But isn't it awesome for those who do have the figure? This looks cool and comfortable for summer - and could be easily dressed up or down. Add wedges, pile on the long necklaces and an arm-full of bangles. That's how I'd wear it! :-) 
The Beatrice Mini is pictured above - this little number will show some leg and your figure! (view on Jules Reid website HERE). The sleeves make it appropriate for many climates and occasions. My vision of this - wear while entertaining at home, dockside at sunset, throw over your swimsuit for dinner out, or wear it for a leisurely Saturday shopping and lunching with the girls. 

Now - for a little extra FUN! Jules Reid has generously offered to award ONE lucky reader with their very own Virginia Tunic (retail value $295)! How exciting, huh? To qualify for the giveaway, go "Like" the Jules Reid Facebook page (link HERE). Please write on the wall "I saw you on Shopaholic In Alabama". All "likes" will be entered into a drawing for a FREE Jules Reid Virginia Tunic! The contest period will last for one week, and the winner will be announced on the Jules Reid Facebook page

What are your favorites from the Jules Reid collection? 

I'd like to extend an extra-special "thank you" to Jules Reid for offering a giveaway to my readers. Now, let's return the favor and go show Jules some Shopaholic Love! Good luck in the drawing! 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Brighten Your Monday With These Sales

What a way to start off a holiday week in style - by brightening your Monday with a few good sales! :-) 

First off, Lilly Pulitzer Gifts & Home Accessories will be a featured boutique on Rue La La today. The madness begins at 10AM Central time - be quick, Lilly Pulitzer always sells out with lightning speed. If you need a free invite to Rue La La, use my link HERE

"Prep for the Fourth" - Kiel James Patrick 4th of July celebration 
This Fourth of July we are challenging our fellow Americans to dress to the nines in American-made products. To help spread the word to support locally made products we are offering Kiel James Patrick fans (heroes) a 20% discount for spreading the word to friends and family.

Use the Trendyr to share your purchase on your Facebook and Twitter pages, and save 20%. Find Trendyr on the 'View Cart' page.

Last but not least, Tracy Negoshian is featured on zulily. There are some fun styles, many of which I don't remember ever being on the TN website. If you're not a member of zulily, sign up for your free membership HERE. Tracy Negoshian has quickly become one of my favorite designers, and her dresses are washable. Anything to help that dry cleaning bill! 

Now - I need some advice. How do I force myself to go to work every day this week, when the DH is home on vacation? I know - poor planning on our part. He had this vacation scheduled for a long time, and of course I had no idea I'd be training for a new job already. 

Have a Marvelous Monday !

Sunday, July 1, 2012

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