About Me

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I am a South Carolinian who was raised classic, conservative, Christian, and proud. These are my exploits as I attempt to bring Greek Life and Southern Charm to Southeastern University. I love Autumn, Lilly Pulitzer, Sweet Tea, French cooking, Monograms, Gardenias, Pearls, Sailing, and Turquoise.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Wedding Dreams

I, like many of you, are obsessed with weddings. My best friend has been dating a guy for several years now and I absolutely cannot wait to help her start planning her wedding (Those who can't find a man to get married, plan for those who can. Right?) Roommate is under strict instructions to tell me I hate pink when I get married, because for whatever reason everyone decides its their favorite color when they get married. I love love love the idea of navy and coral. So here are some of my favorite things that are trending in weddings right now.

I absolutely adore plantation weddings. This night-time one is a great idea too with the lighted shrubs. 

Fun hanging backgrounds for outdoor weddings are popular and I love this one!

 The Wedding World is just mad for peonies right now and I couldn't be happier!

This bridal bouquet is stunning.

I love this cake topper but I would do without the chocolate fondant. 

Who wouldn't want to be a guest at a wedding with these groomsmen?

 I really love both of these groomsmen ideas, but more coral than pink

Well thats all for today, I could look at wedding things for hours, so I am choosing to walk away. Going shopping with 90's mom and enjoying the last few weeks of summer at home.

Happy Saturday!!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Inviting the Dangerous

Ok, So I've been gone all week. I went to Birmingham for a staff bonding and research trip for a ministry I work for. It was so much fun and I loved being in the land of sweet tea again. We left Florida around 1 a.m. and arrived in Birmingham around 12 p.m. after several stops at fun places like this one:
 (that's me in the black tee and Nike Tempo's- the BEST car travel clothes)

Or this one:
(I look awful-this is the way back, can't you tell?- in the green)

We went to some leadership training classes and an awesome event where we ended the night singing "Amazing Grace" outside City Hall in the "Hate City" with a large diversity of over 5,000 people. It was a monumental occasion for sure. And it wasn't bad to see all the southern boys in their Sperry's, flatfront shorts, and croakies. <3 I don't get to see that all the time in Florida. 
 Me and The Boys (this trip was greatly lacking testosterone).
 The Ladies on the trip
This is only the front section of the after-party outside City Hall. It was nuts; the mayor, police officers, news crews, and MTV (who were there filming a new series called "Reborn") were worshiping and singing with the masses.

We had a fun dinner at The Cheesecake Factory where I had some delicious grilled chicken with roasted peppers, asparagus, and green beans. I opted for mango & passionfruit iced tea and Kaluha cheesecake.

 I'm so not happy with Hipster for ruining this picture. It was my favorite from the trip of me, mostly because I love love love my green cardigan.

We decided to go for a swim at our hotel. So the boys (a hipster and a rapper) agreed to meet us there in a few minutes. We went and enjoyed some time in the pool when we realized the boys had never come down and joined us. We went looking for them and found them climbing this water fall behind our hotel.

We joined the adventure. They had already named various levels of it "The Origin" and "The Fort." These boys are well over twenty one years old mind you. They were beyond pleased that we were willing to be a part of the adventure they had started. On this trip, I saw a lot of principles I had been learning about the male species actually play out. The first being that men want women to be a part of the adventure, not be the adventure.

We decided to find some bigger waterfalls and set out for Oak Mountain State Park (the best $3 I spent on this trip).  This is where my greatest lesson in male-dom came out. I've always prided myself on understanding men, and lets be honest, being able to manipulate and catch a few good ones. Which lately, I've come to realize my entire approach was all wrong even though it worked. I highly recommend the books Captivating and Wild at Heart to really understand yourself and then the men in your life. You may think that you already have a good handle on it all, but I promise these books will blow your mind with their insight. And I also promise its nothing like "Men are from Mars... " or whatever those books are called. 

My revelation started when I was staring over the edge of what was basically a cliff and Hipster decided instead of taking the trail to the bottom like everyone else, he was going to scale the wall. 
He gained quite an audience as other hikers stopped and offered advice and just observed. I worried and told him to be careful. Rapper watched impressed, and clearly debating on joining in on the adventure. After about 20 mins, Hipster reached the bottom of the 40 ft rock face. Grinning and impressed by his own gall. 

That's when this quote from Wild at Heart echoed in my head: "Invite him to be dangerous." That is in response to a woman asking how to get her husband to come alive again. But that is the core foundation to what men need and want from us. Hipster saw the invitation and chance to do something he didn't normally do and took it. The adrenaline of knowing he could seriously injure himself and the admiration of onlookers was only icing on the cake. He did it because his very nature called him to.

Now I'm not talking about doing something complete stupid but simply offering him the chance to display and exercise his god-given need for adventure and danger. As a woman, your best bet at finding a real man who appreciates your gentle nature as a woman and at the same time will step up and be a man, is to offer a man the chance to fight for you, protect you, and be dangerous. 

People who know me, know I am very anti-feminism, as a matter of fact I think it's part of the reason our society is so messed up. BUT, I am not saying that women can't do things on their own. They can and there are even things that we can do better than a man. That doesn't mean we should. In the same way that we want to be needed, a man wants to be needed too. We just want to be needed for different things.

A small example of what I am talking about is opening a bottle. I am fully capable. However, I can't tell you the last time I opened on when a man was in the room. It sounds silly, and a guy may even give you a hard time when you ask him to open it, but I promise you its a subtle way of inviting a man to protect you. And he will always open it for you. Small things like opening bottles, opening doors, giving you a hand down a large step, helping you into a car, placing your order for you, carrying your books/luggage/shopping bags, are all things that open the part of a guy that is often suppressed. Now, don't expect it every time and be all upset if they don't; be appreciative when they do and tell them. Our goal shouldn't be to "whip" guys into shape, but to find and invite men to be the southern gentlemen we value so highly. 

There is so much more to say on the matter of being the kind of woman who attracts the kind of guy she is looking for, but I'll save that for another day. But pause next time you go to open that bottle of water and remember that you should always find ways to invite the men in your life to be dangerous.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Saturday Ramblings

Last night I decided to cook dinner with the family (after spending the whole day filing papers for my uncle who hasn't really organized his bills in 3 years). I was quite scatterbrained because I still hadn't packed for my trip to Birmingham this weekend and I was leaving town to visit some friends for the few days before we actually leave for 'Bama.

When I was a live-in Nanny and Tutor, the Gardener of the property was an odd, eclectic woman, but a fabulous cook. I made my own version of her orange-glazed grilled chicken for fourth of July and everyone loved it. So, on Thursday, I had picked up some basil at my favorite produce place and decided to attempt my own version of the Gardener's Pesto.

So here it is, the recipe for my Pesto. I served it with Farfalle pasta (bowtie), sautéed broccoli, cornbread (yeah, I know it doesn't really go with the rest, but I love cornbread and everyone always asks for it), and pan-fried chicken breast (just lightly coat fresh chicken breast in flour, salt, pepper, and garlic powder and pan fry on medium with butter and minced garlic). Oh! and a fresh pitcher of sweet tea of course. :) It is also super delicious on toasted artisan bread.

Sydney's Pesto!

1 bunch washed, stemmed cilantro
1/2 bunch washed basil
1 Tbs apple cider vinegar
1/2 c. Olive oil
1 finely sliced green onion
1/2 Tbs minced garlic
Fresh ground pepper and salt to taste

1) Put 1 Tbs of olive oil and 1 handful of herbs into food processor and mix on medium-high speed for 30 seconds.

2) Repeat until all oil is added and then add remainder of herbs and garlic, onion, salt, pepper, and vinegar.

3) Blend until desired consistency and serve.

Bonus!!- You can also squeeze a little fresh lime over and blend as well.


And FYI, just so you don't miss out, Lilly is offering a cute printed travel bag with a qualifying purchase.

Happy Saturday!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Being a Princess

Who doesn't want to be a princess? It's sort of like being the First Lady but with better jewelry. And hats! I'm so jealous of the fact that Brits get to wear hats and ah-dorable sheath dresses with long coats over them in matching colors. So, just a little fashion eye-candy before the weekend, take a look at what I think are some of HRH Kate's clothing choices.

Like the women before her, she is going to be under a lot of pressure with what designers she decides to support and everything she wears. I have appreciated seeing that she re-wears articles and favors a certain purse. I look forward to seeing what she wears in the coming years.

Another royal worth looking at is the new Princess of Monaco (her Mother-in-law would be Grace Kelly). She married Monaco's crown royal at the beginning of this month. She is an Olympian from South Africa and a stunning tall, lean blonde.

She certainly has big footsteps to fill, as Monaco has been waiting for a Princess since Princess Grace died tragically in a car accident 30 years ago.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Puppies & Parents

I went for a run yesterday (I'm in training for 5k's leading into a half marathon in the winter) and decided to take my dad's Australian part Dingo/part something else with me, you know, safety from hood-figures and all that. Turns out, while she is great at going on walks without a leash and loves running through fields, she's not a big fan of running on a leash. At all!

I half-dragged her through two miles and then decided it wasn't worth it. Sooo... I think I need a good running dog. I'm not the golden retriever or lab type- I know they are prep (as mentioned int True Prep) but they just are too big and can shed too much for me.

So my top list of other possible running partners along with the names they would be given:

1) An English Springer-Spaniel (Lord Braxton aka "Braxie")
Originally hunting dogs, they are known as great family dogs and extremely energetic and need to be taken on a brisk walk regularly. Perfect! They were favorites of the Victorian-age British Royal family and aristocracy.

2) A Brittany Spaniel (Porter)
Originally French and known for hunting, particularly waterfowl, and is a good family dog if with the family since shortly after birth.

3) Chesapeake Bay Retriever (Lord Braxton aka "Braxie")
Known for being hunting dogs, but are commonly trained to be sporting dogs for activities such as jogging. And they have gorgeous blue eyes!


My mom and I were talking today, (we are really close) and she told me that I had basically been divorced twice because I had been so serious in two different relationships. My first thought was to completely disagree, but then I thought more about it and realized that in some ways she was right. I had given a whole lot of my heart to two different boys (not men, I assure you, although one seems to be now). Its sad that we "poor females" in the words of Elizabeth [the heroine in Pride and Prejudice], give so much of our hearts away and are often left with nothing to show for it, but to pick ourselves up and wait on the Good Lord to change our circumstances. 

Now I know that often times, it is our fault for moving outside of God's will, but is it possible that we aren't the ones doing the moving? It could be his fault, whoever he may be. Obviously, I'm speaking out of personal situations currently. lol. I just had to get that out. 

And while we are talking about parents, when do you draw the line between obeying and just respecting opinions? I am a senior in college and I want to know, does honoring my parents mean I have to do what they think is best or can honoring them mean respectfully making my own decisions. Because, it seems to be a blurred line by important people in my life lately. Parents aren't perfect and maybe, just maybe an adult needs to rely on their own understandings from the Holy Spirt to make decisions not just their parent's discernment. You have to make a choice one day to cling to your parents or a spouse, so does it start now? Or just when you get married? I would love to know.

Ok, rantings over. Thanks for putting up with it. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Let's Talk Lilly

Extra Credit today: I've done a little online shopping and some Lilly things are just too wonderful to keep to myself.

Like this adorable dress! Which, yes in case you were wondering, it does have pockets!

Or this quaint shirt-dress that is just dying for a string of pearls and some cream patent-leather flats:

The scalloped edging on these shorts is just too cute! Perfect for running around town!

In my humble opinion, this is the Pièce de résistance of the new collections from Lilly

Happy Shopping!