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err in the direction of kindness

greetings, folks!  i’ve been taking an obvious blog sabbatical.  because of THIS:

photo-197

can you even believe that bump is only fourteen weeks old in this picture??? y’all – the 3rd baby is not messing around. i have been showing since i peed on the stick and basically in maternity clothes since then too.  i tried to do the whole rubber-band-around-the-button-thing and then decided not to be a hero, and promptly started wearing full-fledged maternity pants.  much better.  anyway, we are all elated / scared / excited / scared.  and i apologize for going MIA, but i have been feeling just awful.  anytime that 2nd trimester golden age wants to kick in, i am ready!!!!

this past weekend, a gaggle of girlfriends and i celebrated the wedding of our very good friend, dorothy, on daufuskie island, SC!  it was a blast and SO beautiful.  full blog post to come, as i did many of the paper items.  here is a quick picture of us on the way to the rehearsal dinner. (l-r: amy, dorothy aka THE BRIDE, betsey, me and jen)

photo-197p.s. i love that green dress – i bought it from a v. stylish neighbor & friend who had used it as a maternity dress of sorts too.  it’s a generously cut DVF!  love that diane.

we all arrived on daufuskie on thursday; betsey and i driving together from atlanta and catching the 6:30 ferry from hilton head.  i pictured us completely wind-blown and maybe a little damp from the surf during the ferry ride, but turns out ferries have come a long way – we sat in an air-conditioned room with cushioned seats!  who knew.  we were shown to our golf cart and started on our trek to our house, a simple 20 minute golf cart ride away…  except for a plethora of roundabouts, forks, windy roads, is that a median or do we veer left?  that kind of thing.  this sweet, sweet old man saw that we were lost and asked where we were headed – we told him our address and he said, “ah – i’m going that direction.  follow me – where i turn right, you turn left!”  so we did.  and we got to the point where he was supposed to turn right, and he said “you know – it’s kind of tricky back there.  i’ll just take you all the way.”  how kind of him to take time out of his night to show two gals on their way.  i think he is a perfect example of george saunders’ commencement address — have you read this??  you must.  it is so good.  i want to “err in the direction of kindness.”  and watch out for monkey poop.  rush has recently made the proclamation that when we reach the age of 100, we will all shrink back into babies.  maybe he’s not all wrong; babies are generally pretty loving and kind.  here it is:

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George Saunders convocation speech, Syracuse University, 2013.

Down through the ages, a traditional form has evolved for this type of speech, which is: Some old fart, his best years behind him, who, over the course of his life, has made a series of dreadful mistakes (that would be me), gives heartfelt advice to a group of shining, energetic young people, with all of their best years ahead of them (that would be you).

And I intend to respect that tradition.

Now, one useful thing you can do with an old person, in addition to borrowing money from them, or asking them to do one of their old-time “dances,” so you can watch, while laughing, is ask: “Looking back, what do you regret?” And they’ll tell you. Sometimes, as you know, they’ll tell you even if you haven’t asked. Sometimes, even when you’ve specifically requested they not tell you, they’ll tell you.

So: What do I regret? Being poor from time to time? Not really. Working terrible jobs, like “knuckle-puller in a slaughterhouse?” (And don’t even ASK what that entails.) No. I don’t regret that. Skinny-dipping in a river in Sumatra, a little buzzed, and looking up and seeing like 300 monkeys sitting on a pipeline, pooping down into the river, the river in which I was swimming, with my mouth open, naked? And getting deathly ill afterwards, and staying sick for the next seven months? Not so much. Do I regret the occasional humiliation? Like once, playing hockey in front of a big crowd, including this girl I really liked, I somehow managed, while falling and emitting this weird whooping noise, to score on my own goalie, while also sending my stick flying into the crowd, nearly hitting that girl? No. I don’t even regret that.

But here’s something I do regret:

In seventh grade, this new kid joined our class. In the interest of confidentiality, her Convocation Speech name will be “ELLEN.” ELLEN was small, shy. She wore these blue cat’s-eye glasses that, at the time, only old ladies wore. When nervous, which was pretty much always, she had a habit of taking a strand of hair into her mouth and chewing on it.

So she came to our school and our neighborhood, and was mostly ignored, occasionally teased (“Your hair taste good?” — that sort of thing). I could see this hurt her. I still remember the way she’d look after such an insult: eyes cast down, a little gut-kicked, as if, having just been reminded of her place in things, she was trying, as much as possible, to disappear. After awhile she’d drift away, hair-strand still in her mouth. At home, I imagined, after school, her mother would say, you know: “How was your day, sweetie?” and she’d say, “Oh, fine.” And her mother would say, “Making any friends?” and she’d go, “Sure, lots.”

Sometimes I’d see her hanging around alone in her front yard, as if afraid to leave it.

And then — they moved. That was it. No tragedy, no big final hazing.

One day she was there, next day she wasn’t.

End of story.

Now, why do I regret that? Why, forty-two years later, am I still thinking about it? Relative to most of the other kids, I was actually pretty nice to her. I never said an unkind word to her. In fact, I sometimes even (mildly) defended her.

But still. It bothers me.

So here’s something I know to be true, although it’s a little corny, and I don’t quite know what to do with it:

What I regret most in my life are failures of kindness.

Those moments when another human being was there, in front of me, suffering, and I responded . . . sensibly. Reservedly. Mildly.

Or, to look at it from the other end of the telescope: Who, in your life, do you remember most fondly, with the most undeniable feelings of warmth?

Those who were kindest to you, I bet.

It’s a little facile, maybe, and certainly hard to implement, but I’d say, as a goal in life, you could do worse than: Try to be kinder.

Now, the million-dollar question: What’s our problem? Why aren’t we kinder?

Here’s what I think:

Each of us is born with a series of built-in confusions that are probably somehow Darwinian. These are: (1) we’re central to the universe (that is, our personal story is the main and most interesting story, the only story, really); (2) we’re separate from the universe (there’s US and then, out there, all that other junk – dogs and swing-sets, and the State of Nebraska and low-hanging clouds and, you know, other people), and (3) we’re permanent (death is real, o.k., sure – for you, but not for me).

Now, we don’t really believe these things – intellectually we know better – but we believe them viscerally, and live by them, and they cause us to prioritize our own needs over the needs of others, even though what we really want, in our hearts, is to be less selfish, more aware of what’s actually happening in the present moment, more open, and more loving.

So, the second million-dollar question: How might we DO this? How might we become more loving, more open, less selfish, more present, less delusional, etc., etc?

Well, yes, good question.

Unfortunately, I only have three minutes left.

So let me just say this. There are ways. You already know that because, in your life, there have been High Kindness periods and Low Kindness periods, and you know what inclined you toward the former and away from the latter. Education is good; immersing ourselves in a work of art: good; prayer is good; meditation’s good; a frank talk with a dear friend; establishing ourselves in some kind of spiritual tradition — recognizing that there have been countless really smart people before us who have asked these same questions and left behind answers for us.

Because kindness, it turns out, is hard — it starts out all rainbows and puppy dogs, and expands to include . . . well, everything.

One thing in our favor: some of this “becoming kinder” happens naturally, with age. It might be a simple matter of attrition: as we get older, we come to see how useless it is to be selfish — how illogical, really. We come to love other people and are thereby counter-instructed in our own centrality. We get our butts kicked by real life, and people come to our defense, and help us, and we learn that we’re not separate, and don’t want to be. We see people near and dear to us dropping away, and are gradually convinced that maybe we too will drop away (someday, a long time from now). Most people, as they age, become less selfish and more loving. I think this is true. The great Syracuse poet, Hayden Carruth, said, in a poem written near the end of his life, that he was “mostly Love, now.”

And so, a prediction, and my heartfelt wish for you: as you get older, your self will diminish and you will grow in love. YOU will gradually be replaced by LOVE. If you have kids, that will be a huge moment in your process of self-diminishment. You really won’t care what happens to YOU, as long as they benefit. That’s one reason your parents are so proud and happy today. One of their fondest dreams has come true: you have accomplished something difficult and tangible that has enlarged you as a person and will make your life better, from here on in, forever.

Congratulations, by the way.

When young, we’re anxious — understandably — to find out if we’ve got what it takes. Can we succeed? Can we build a viable life for ourselves? But you — in particular you, of this generation — may have noticed a certain cyclical quality to ambition. You do well in high-school, in hopes of getting into a good college, so you can do well in the good college, in the hopes of getting a good job, so you can do well in the good job so you can . . .

And this is actually O.K. If we’re going to become kinder, that process has to include taking ourselves seriously — as doers, as accomplishers, as dreamers. We have to do that, to be our best selves.

Still, accomplishment is unreliable. “Succeeding,” whatever that might mean to you, is hard, and the need to do so constantly renews itself (success is like a mountain that keeps growing ahead of you as you hike it), and there’s the very real danger that “succeeding” will take up your whole life, while the big questions go untended.

So, quick, end-of-speech advice: Since, according to me, your life is going to be a gradual process of becoming kinder and more loving: Hurry up. Speed it along. Start right now. There’s a confusion in each of us, a sickness, really: selfishness. But there’s also a cure. So be a good and proactive and even somewhat desperate patient on your own behalf — seek out the most efficacious anti-selfishness medicines, energetically, for the rest of your life.

Do all the other things, the ambitious things — travel, get rich, get famous, innovate, lead, fall in love, make and lose fortunes, swim naked in wild jungle rivers (after first having it tested for monkey poop) – but as you do, to the extent that you can, err in the direction of kindness. Do those things that incline you toward the big questions, and avoid the things that would reduce you and make you trivial. That luminous part of you that exists beyond personality — your soul, if you will — is as bright and shining as any that has ever been. Bright as Shakespeare’s, bright as Gandhi’s, bright as Mother Teresa’s. Clear away everything that keeps you separate from this secret luminous place. Believe it exists, come to know it better, nurture it, share its fruits tirelessly.

And someday, in 80 years, when you’re 100, and I’m 134, and we’re both so kind and loving we’re nearly unbearable, drop me a line, let me know how your life has been. I hope you will say: It has been so wonderful.

Congratulations, Class of 2013.

I wish you great happiness, all the luck in the world, and a beautiful summer.

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hoping to not be as much of a stranger; i’ve missed y’all!

xoxo

 

for the spectators

i, like you, watched in horror as the news unfolded yesterday surrounding the events at the boston marathon.  just how…  and why…  WHY?  as you know, the finish line at a marathon is not packed with accomplished and elite runners – it’s filled with loved ones of the runners.  the spouses, children, parents, friends and family members that all came out to see their person cross the finish line.  and it’s a special thing, what you see at the finish line.  the sheer level of humanity present will just about make your heart burst wide open.  the person who got injured along the way, limping along and being supported by a fellow contestant.  the special needs child being pushed by their parent (a wonderful example here).  a son who is running in honor of his late mother with the words “i miss you mom” on the back of his jersey (i actually saw this while running in a race and it is very difficult to run and cry at the same time).  i love this article from the washington post entitled “if you are losing faith in humanity, go out and watch a marathon.”  it’s true.

i ran a marathon once…many, many moons ago.  it was the 2005 chicago marathon, and my friend betsey and i trained and ran together the whole way (she likes to remind me that we only stopped running once – for my restroom break – but i would like to point out that i waited to find a port-a-potty that had no line!).  the race day was one of my favorite experiences in life – it is truly amazing to see people lining each side of the race route, at least 4 or 5 deep, cheering for you and rooting you on – a perfect stranger.  in the chicago marathon, they lined the streets for literally every bit of the 26.2 miles – it was unbelievable.  some of the spectators were our loved ones – our good friend dorothy, betsey’s friend from college carter, and my cousin alicia.  they found us at 3 or 4 different points during the race, including the finish line, and it was so, so cool and special.  it breaks my  heart to think that some of the people affected did just what our friends and family did – showed up to support them, and ended up with a tragic outcome.

just because i’m feeling nostalgic, here are a couple of shots from the race.  this was betsey and me before we started – sadly, i couldn’t find any of the whole group.

Atl-DC62

they had all of the runners’ names on a wall outside the marathon hotel…  (my maiden name, obvi – and remember FILM?!  this photo got double exposed!)

At63my heart goes out to all of those in boston – and especially the spectators.

xoxo

tag sale announcement & oscars

tag sale time

some very exciting news to report….we’re having a TAG SALE tomorrow!!!!  it will be a two-day event.  tomorrow (tuesday, 2/26) will be a bits and pieces sale – all under 10 quantity sets of notecards.  then wednesday (2/27) will be a gift tag and holiday clean out sale.  YAHOO!!  i had never really thought to do one of these before, but i just cannot stand seeing things go to waste and, well, we need to make some room for new things around here.  so YOU will reap the benefits of our pre-spring cleaning!  i’ll post the blog with all of the items at 1:00 p.m. EST both days.  you can email me at callie@calliespondence.com with the items you want – first come, first served!  i’ll send you a paypal invoice and once you take care of it, i’ll put your items in the mail to you.  shipping is $2.00 per item.  i mean, what a DEAL!  and you know how i feel about a deal.  i can’t wait!

in other news, did you watch the oscars last night?  i always love the oscars.  i have to admit, i had NO idea who the host was until he walked out on stage (and not even then, actually).  before the show, i thought it was:

110128mag-JesseTyle-Ferguson1(i am one of the 9 people on the planet who do not watch modern family)

but then sometimes i thought, maybe it’s this guy.

seth-meyers-photosand then when he walked out, i was like, “oh casey affleck?  i was so off!”

casey-affleck-westwood-premiere-miramax-films-gone-baby-970452350but i have to say, i was so impressed with seth mcfarlane!  i know he got some pans, but i guess my standards aren’t that high for a host.  if you’re relatively cute and make me laugh, i like you.  i thought his intro bit was hilarious (the sock puppet reenactment of ‘the flight?’ the boob song?), could not BELIEVE that he could also sing and dance (and well at that?!) and loved his and kristen chenoweth’s “here’s to the losers” at the very end.  sure, he had a few off color jokes but don’t they all?  plus, an added bonus, rbb loves ‘the family guy’ so he even watched for a little while alongside me – unprecedented.

my favorite looks of the night – amy adams for sure.  just so feminine and lovely.  jessica chastain, you FINALLY got it right!  i have not been able to figure out why an “it” girl like her has not been able to land a decent stylist.  but the hair was working with the dress and the red lip just tied it all together.

9005127_600x338i am still wondering why anne hathaway wore my 1996 prom dress to the oscars – especially when she was picked to (and did) win.  i am going to track down a photo and do a side by side.  it’s uncanny.

59814_1naomi’s hair was EN FUEGO.  i was obsessed.  dress, take or leave it.  but the hair!

naomi_watts_oscars_hair_jeff_kravitzfilmmagic_18ilh2u-18ilhbkbest speech: ben affleck.  i had to stay up late to see it, but it was so worth it.  he and jen are the cutest and i totally teared up when he was talking about her, and then when his voice went out at the end when he said his kids’ names.  so sweet.

Ben Afflecksee you tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. for the TAG SALE!!!

xoxo

just popping in…

…to let you know a few things.

1) if you loved my big, huge, pink heart that i CANNOT WAIT to hang on my door again…they are for sale again this year through stewart & james!  info here – atlanta delivery on 1/26.

big heart from s&j

damn those planters were looking rough.

2) new favorite little girl notepad text: from the hula hoop of…

from the hula hoop of

3) run, don’t walk, to get the lobster cobb salad from the optimist.  i chased this salad for months (been several times for dinner but oh no – they only serve it at lunch) and it was well worth the wait.

lobster cobb salad

4) reading to preschoolers is good for your soul.  this morning, i read “if you give a mouse a cookie” to 12 or so three-year-olds in rush’s class.  there is one page where the mouse gets a milk mustache, and needs a napkin.  i asked the children if they ever got a milk mustache, and one little girl stood up and said “no we don’t have milk mustaches!  because my brother can’t have dairy.”

if you give a mouse

5) the people who wrote my condo docs are insane.  see 2nd paragraph.

condo crazies

6) we no longer have a red kitchen!!!!!!  it is MOST enjoyable.  it feels so fresh in there, and i have never been so motivated to keep it clean, because it looks so good  (file under: “unexpected results from painting”).

new kitchen

more to come on all fronts.  especially that pot bellied pig thing.

xoxo

glory, glory

soooo…in case you are not a member of the human race and somehow did not hear or see the outcome of the Georgia vs. Alabama SEC championship game on saturday night, we lost.  in a stunning, most gut-wrenching, get-your-hopes-way-up-and-then-dash-them kind of way.  in the last minute and eight seconds of the game trailing by 4, we took the ball 80 yards down the field but needed 85 to win.  as i was marveling out loud at aaron murray’s prowess in making that many good, fair and long passes in that short amount of time, jumping up and down and giving rush high fives, telling him his mama’s team might be playing in the NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP!!  just imagine!!  …i heard rbb say softly, “that was the game.”  i think, what in the heck is that crazy man talking about.  and then alabama started celebrating and it was, in a word…

over.

and then my heart broke into a million pieces all over my living room floor.

i know that’s dramatic. but that is truly what it felt like.  i think brin said it best when she said that she had long-term breakups that hurt less than that game.  i know it’s just a game.  i know it’s not a big deal in the grand scheme of life.  but man, it would have been such a good story.  and i LOVE a good story.  i was totally unprepared for how emotional i was going to be following the game.  i mean y’all, i felt like that sad blob in the paxil (or lexapro?) commercial for days.  kind of like all of the people in this picture (real, live georgia fans following the game.)

i think this photo actually captures the cycle of emotions pretty well…you start out being angry (man on left).  ticked off.  wronged.  it might consist of inner thoughts in all caps, “IT WAS OUR TURN, DAMNIT!”  then, extreme sadness (head in hands) over how things transpired.  you had ‘em.  you really did.  the what ifs creep in…  the two pointer, the missed penalty on murray’s hit, the tipped last pass. why, oh why, couldn’t one of those things be different.  then a state of childlike innocence and optimism (young boy): “well, there’s always next year.  maybe lightning will strike twice. murray will be back, after all.”  and then you check your phone to see who just texted you – because life, it goes on.

but it is so hard on my heart to see big, burly, tough guys who left so much sweat and toil on that field reduced to…this.  can someone pass me a tissue?!

i love this quote:

Why do sports hold so much power? Not because they’re life and death — they’re not. But they make us feel life and death, in all its messy glory, in all its numbing agony. I felt all those things Saturday night, and so did those 75,000 people in the Georgia Dome, and so did all those millions watching and listening, even those who didn’t care who won and lost, but were screaming at the end because the game made them feel.

it’s from this article shared by one of my facebook friends.  that game, if nothing else, made you feel something.  but i still can’t help but wish that for me and the rest of the bulldogs, it was elation.

maybe that kid is right.  there is always next year.

xoxo

 

an eventful dinner out

last thursday, i acted like i was “with it” living in the city of atlanta…i wore a dress, put on mascara and went to dinner at the new watershed.  i first hit up a friend’s happy hour entitled “one last hoo-rah before this baby comes out my hoo-hah” (hilarious, right?) but that’s a totally different blog post.  my friends betsey, amy and i met for dinner at the new hot spot around town, located ONE BLOCK AWAY from the condo i used to live in (and still own, but that’s yet another blog post).  one friggin’ block!  why couldn’t this have happened when i was single, childless or at least still resided there!  anyway.  it is most fabulous.  you must go.

the bar was happening…to say the very least.

we got a smattering of small plates and dessert and everything was lick your plate good.  we sat outside at a corner table, overlooking the hustle and bustle of peachtree street.  about 15 or 20 minutes after we had sat down, a woman wearing a cute white shirt and sassy black shorts came out with a hostess, looked at the sky and proclaimed that it was “going to rain in 30 minutes.”  we commented that that was odd, as there was not a cloud in the sky…but moved right along.  she and her party ended up sitting at the table behind us.  over the course of our dinner, we kept hearing glasses break and drinks spilling…all coming from the table with the impending rainstorm woman.  i still don’t know what was going on back there.  we all left at the same time and betsey said to the woman on the way out, “you sure did get a lot of drinks spilled on you!!”  she turned, laughed and turned back around.

y’all, i never forget a face.  i may forget a name, how many months old my children are, how far along i am when i’m pregnant, that we need cat litter, that rbb’s shirts need to be picked up at the dry cleaner.  but i never forget a face.  and right then, i knew who she was – kathryn stockett, author of “the help,” aka the blockbuster novel from summer of 2010 and the ensuing movie in the summer of 2011.

i quietly alerted betsey and amy, they thought it was cool, then proceeded into the restroom on their way out while i went straight to the valet.  and stood next to the woman totally and completely alone.  no one around, not even a valet guy.  i gave myself a little pep talk (why?  why so hard?  just a regular person!) and said, “excuse me…but are you kathryn stockett??”  she touched my arm and said “why yes, yes i am!  what’s your name?”  i told her my name was callie, and that i just LOVED the book, loved the movie, thought she was so talented, it was an honor to meet her.  she was completely gracious and polite, and was so glad i enjoyed it.

i don’t know if i’ve told you this yet, but i happen to be the least cool person in the universe.  i get star-struck very, very, like embarrassingly very, easily. and because i’m totally nervous meeting even the most d-list of people, i end up saying things that goes through my head that should not come out my mouth.  things like:  ”yeah, i totally thought that was you, i remember reading somewhere or maybe i was watching something, don’t know, anyway it was about the movie and they mentioned you were going to be in it, then when your scene came up at the junior league meeting, i was like, oh!  that’s the author, i recognize her from the book jacket, and here you are that’s so neeeeeat!”

and this is when she covered up her license plate number after the valet brought up her car.

no really, she was ever the polite southern lady and replied that the movie involved a lot of her friends and her daughter played the young skeeter…and her mom was in it…that it was just so much fun to make.  and then we talked about how it was such a nice night to eat dinner outside.  and then she touched my arm again (she’s a toucher), said it was nice to meet me and i repeated the “i bow down” verbiage from above when the valet brought up her ride.

they totally need to get a more speedy valet company to protect their patrons from crazies like me, right?!

it really was a thrill to meet her. btw, owen wilson and vince vaughn are filming a movie in atlanta right now.  don’t you wonder what nonsense i would spout at them if spotted?!  good grief.
xoxo

balloon gender reveal

i just had to share this with you; i think it’s so cool.  my friend jen who has the amazing house (and amazing talent as an interior designer), throws amazing parties and is just all-around amazing, is pregnant with her second child.  she did not find out the gender with her first pregnancy, and i have to admit i was a little peeved when she decided to do that.  i didn’t know anyone who chose to not know back then, and what the heck was i going to get her for a baby gift anyway?!  (she was one of my first friends to have a baby, if it isn’t obvious.  now i know: go off the registry for the shower gift and save the fun outfit or whatever for after it’s born.)  but i cannot tell you what anticipation i was writhing with when she finally went into labor with carson… i mean i was waiting by the phone like a 6th grade girl without a date to the spring fling.  i enjoyed the anticipation and reward so much that we didn’t find out with either of our babies.

anyhow, they decided to change things up this time and it was a great way to involve carson in all the fun!  jen had her doctor’s office write down the gender, put it into an envelope, and she took said envelope to a store that blows up balloons.  jen, help – where do you go for that?  hallmark?  are those even around anymore?  when i worked at the athens, georgia hallmark in 2000 we blew up balloons :)  she left the envelope with them and told them to blow up either pink or blue balloons and put them in a sealed box…then got gussied up with her adorable family, took a friend to photograph, and unwrapped the box.

first, could they be any cuter.  jen doesn’t even look pregnant (b&$#*).

i seriously can hear jen’s laugh right now just looking at this picture.

how fun is that – a little man joining the ranks this summer!!  i cannot WAIT to meet him.
girl, get your running shoes ready.  they are a crazy breed…but they do love their mamas :) 
xoxo

the big time

now, i watch like two tv shows.  i’m serious.  i love getting in conversations with people when they’re like, “did you see last week’s modern family?  a riot!”  no, i don’t watch that.  i know, i know, i should.  ”oh, there was this hilarious scene in how i met your mother, you saw that right…”  nope…never seen it.  but i do LOVE neil patrick harris’ sesame street shoes routine!  same character?  no, different?  ok never mind.  ”gray’s anatomy was so lame last night.”  yeah that’s why i quit watching it four years ago.

you know what show never disappoints, you don’t need any prior knowledge of characters therefore able to jump in anytime AND there’s a spectacular blog recapping the episode to read the next day that’s even funnier than the show itself?

the bachelor!

YES the bachelor.  people, this is good stuff.  you’ve got drama, comedy, love, gaffes of social and fashion kind and usually of epic proportion, total crazies, competition…something for everyone.  i cannot get enough.   and that blog i was talking about…if you watch the bachelor, you have GOT to be reading lincee.

she started out sending an email to a few friends during the andrew firestone season…and i remember every tuesday myself and a group of friends would all frantically try to “get” the lincee recap email.  my friend pam was usually my supplier; she had some kind of in road and i could almost always count on her to send me the goods.  but then after blogs became popular, lincee started one specifically for the recaps so i could get my hands on it at my leisure.   sweet!  and after all these years, i feel like i know her.  i mean, we’ve been through her divorce and new career and getting hired to do the AOL video spots on the bachelor….and now, she’s on the freaking HUFFINGTON POST as a blogger!!!!  how. cool. is. that.  SO big time!  read her first entry here.

i am totally going to say i knew her way back when (because i totally know her).  lincee, hats off to you!!  so excited for you girl.

xoxo

and p.s. i don’t do the elf on the shelf thing yet, but this blog post is HI-larious.   if you even just know what it is, you’ll find it funny!

bubble wrap galore

i am a packaging machine these days.  boxes, shipping tape, bubble wrap, hospital corners on wrapped up holiday cards….i got it all.  not to mention the post office lady is my bff as of late.  i long for a packaging “station” of sorts in my office…wouldn’t that be fun?

a girl can dream…
ok, back to wrapping.  and taping!  and a little photo affixing on the side.
xoxo

shop for a cause table

so last night was the big shop for a cause event, and it was so fun!  lots of great local vendors, fantastic food and good wine (castle rock pinot noir?  yum!).  even live music, sung by a 30-something blonde (male) attorney who is single…and for whom brin and i will be looking around for a young dame to set up with…any ideas?? :)

i snapped some quick pics of my display, which was comprised entirely of things i (or people i know) already have on hand.

fabric: the brown piece is leftover from getting our headboard made a few years ago, and the vintage turquoise polka dots were purchased online to use for photo shoot backdrops.  and if you can believe it, i do not own an iron…so the folds just add to the charming nature of the set-up, n’est-ce pas?

for the first time ever, we featured calliespondence gift tags!  we had adhesive and tie-on varieties.

the old coke bottle display case was brin’s, and was used as her cake stand (how cool).

might i add that we SOLD OUT of the below design.  i came home and excitedly told rbb this fact, to which he said, “that’s awesome, how many did you sell?”  ”uhh…three.  but still – SOLD OUT.”  that’s right.

we also fashioned some adhesive shipping labels, which are great if you have far-flung loved ones to send gifts to.  a well dressed package is a must!  and might i clarify that they are NOT extra-large gift tags like rbb thought.

custom holiday card station…  i picked up the card display at scott’s a while back.

a few baby thank you notes for good measure…
all in all, a great time for a great cause!  thanks brin for inviting me.  and thus begins the retail division of calliespondence…coming to an etsy shop near you soon!
xoxo