Monday, February 28, 2011

And The Greatest Of These Is Love

  • a strong positive emotion of regard and affection
  • any object of warm affection or devotion
  • have a great affection or liking for
  • get pleasure from
  • a deep feeling of sexual desire and attraction

In love, you find many things. Comfort. Safety. Peace. Strawberries. Champagne. To name a few. I'm a sucker for it, in real life and pretend, movie life. I love the end of Pretty Woman. Don't worry, I don't strive to be a call girl with knee high black shiny boots and many different style wigs, however I do dream of the day I am whisked away out of my top floor apartment by a man (preferably my husband) in a limo holding a dozen red roses. This brings me to my point (I know you may be saying, finally women get to it)...

While pleasantly watching CBS Sunday Morning (I love it, good stories and some uplifting. I can appreciate that as I feel news is so depressing and I seldom even watch it), drinking my coffee, watching my little girl go to town in her playroom, I was particularly drawn to a story about the way movies have transformed over the past decade. We are saturated presently by "the man" movie period, as I like to refer to it - SciFi, action, horror (blood, guts, caves, boobs, ya know, the no thanks) movies based on comic books, etc. The place for the good ole' fashioned love story is going by the way side and this is upsetting to me as I am a sucker for these fine films (I use this term loosely as I do realize that these are not always the most highly qualified, Academy Award winning films). During this particular segment they went through clips of some of the classics, many of which I was able to name (shocking), Sleepless in Seattle, Beaches, Titanic and so many other tear jerkers. I love tear jerkers. I truly, truly love a good sappy, boy meets girl, kleenex filled love story. My favorite, by far, without a doubt of hesitation, is The Notebook. I mean Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling, seriously could they be any cuter?

My husband laughs about my affection for this movie and often questioned (this being in the past tense because after kids, a lot becomes in the past tense) if I were home by myself and whether I were on the couch, with a blanket, a box of kleenex and chocolate watching The Notebook (haha, real funny, well maybe I was, so what). Those days of curling up on the couch, by myself, watching a good ole' fashioned love story are somewhat long gone. On the rare occasion that I do have the opportunity to dissolve into the couch and pull myself into that wonderful and goosebump filled love story I embrace it. Gone are the distractions of the day to day (well kinda). I immediately turn to goo. I just love them. As the month of love reaches it's final day, I long for the days when Mia and I can sit together curled up with a blanket, chocolate and a box of kleenex and get all gooey over The Notebook together. But until then, as I am not one to wish the clock move any faster with this child, I will enjoy our time now filled with all things Little People, books, her Dora car, her pink and awesomely adorable shopping cart filled with food, puzzles, a bazillion toys that play music and make all kinds of sounds (even when no one is nearby, creepy)and puppets. Do you have a favorite love story? Do tell, do tell! And.... tomorrow is March! Congratulations to everyone currently experiencing the winter blues and the sweater, no sandals, coats, hats, gloves and scarves blues. The end is near. Who is ready for bright colored pedis? Spring is knocking on our front door and I'm ready to say, Why Come On In!

Friday, February 25, 2011

24 Hours of Ladies

Last year, I joined my oldest sister for a girl's night out of a different fashion. She and a large group of her girlfriends, mostly Moms, get together for an overnight girl's night. It's refreshing, rejuvenating and fun. Last year was great, but this year was splendid!
First up: Spa time here
I got a spa mani then indulged in the whirlpool, the steam room (eucalyptus...aaaahhhhhh) and the relaxation suite. What is the relaxation suite should you ask? You do nothing....I repeat, you do nothing. You sit in a lounge/chaise type chair, put your feet up and just relax. It's awesome, wonderful and amazing. I cannot begin to recall or tell you the last time I just sat (except while sleeping) and took a breath. You can read a book, a magazine, have an apple, grab a water, hot tea or flavored water or do absolutely nada. You're on your own agenda, no one to take care of, no one to look after, no where to be, all the time in the world.
During all of this fun, my bestie and I took a time out for lunch. This was the coolest lunch ever. After ordering and upon arrival, we were whisked away to a private dining room (in our robes and sandals, hair a mess, pores open). It was just she and I, no rushing, no time schedule, just a sandwich and good conversation. We joked about how awesome this was and how great it would be to have this luxury in our lives (how do the Real Housewives do it - I mean the lunches, the spa treatments, the charity functions - who has all that time? Sheesh, paaalease). However, it is much more appreciated the less often it happens, so I can be thankful for that. More or less, I'm just glad I get to do it.
If you are on the east side of the Show-Me State (not east side, like stripper east side, like east side of the state before you cross the river, you follow?), such as myself, I highly recommend Spa at Four Seasons St. Louis for a weekend getaway with your girlfriends, your Mom, your hubby, significant other, domestic partner or whatever person you would want to spend that kind of time with...or just go by yourself. The hotel too is beautiful and the rooms are great. You definitely feel like you had a mini vacay.
After showers and playing dress up (we did each other's hair and make up, it was very teen, while listening to music), we headed out for Happy Hour, dinner here (it was a 6 course meal, we were stuffed and met the chef at the end, somebody knew somebody who knew somebody) and cocktails until 1:00 am. The Four Seasons is connected to Lumiere Place, one of STL's newest casino. Not a huge gambler and not a huge fan of the casino itself, but the hotel....perfect. I was asleep by 1:30 and of course still woke up at 6:00 am (uuh!). I took an awesome, super hot and super long shower with the super cool rain shower head that was oh so relaxing and helped my vodka headache and then back to life we went.
Driving home, I felt pretty good, but was craving something bad for me for breakfast and so were my two passengers. We did a quick detour into the Mickie D's drive-thru (this Diet Coke was the best one I had ever had) and then homeward bound we were.
After dropping off my sister, before pulling out of her driveway, I heard a text come through. It was hubby and it was a picture. I came home to hubby sanitizing Mia's crib and room. She had managed to take off her jammies and her diaper and had rubbed poop all over herself and her crib. Awesome. Back to life, back to reality.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

#1 - The beach, especially in Mexico. There is nothing quite like the sandy, white beaches, crystal clear blue water and the warm breeze. Give me a cocktail and a beach chair and I'm good for the day. Nothing, except for my family, gives me this much joy. I'm lucky enough to visit every few years and I'm very thankful for that. #2 - Speaking of cocktails, I really love wine! I took this fancy pic last night while chillin' on the couch checking FB on my phone. I'm not sure what show was on, but it kind of looks Davie Crockett(ish). Sing it with me, Davie, Davie Crockett, king of the wild frontier, Hmmmmm....
Happy Day before Friday!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Dear Freezing Rain

I don't like you. Period. Because of you, I had a two hour and ten minute commute to work this morning because you closed highways. Thanks. Oh and PS - I'm going to call Sir Spring and have him come after your a**. You best run.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Joy of Love - Nieces Part Dos

As a continuation of my theme of the month and this post, I wanted to take a wee bit of time to talk about my girls.
I am so very blessed to have four beautiful nieces:
Gabrielle "Gabby" - My first niece! What a special girl she is. Gabby has always had a quirkiness about her. She's very serious and extremely intelligent. She's a girly girl and loves pink (seriously, you have no idea about this, the girl is pink everything). At only five years old, she was ready to take on kindergarten just six short months ago. She's extremely sweet, thoughtful and independent. She was so excited when she found out I was pregnant and "supplying" her with her first cousin. My sister took a picture of both girls the morning Mia was born and here is Gabby's. I just love it. She makes my heart melt. I enjoy every moment I get to spend with her, I just wish there were more of those moments.
Graysen "Graygirl" - #2 - My buddy. I could just leave it at that, but I think we all know by now that I am not short with my words. There was a special connection with Gray and I from the very beginning. I remember that well and although specific details about how that started I can't recall, I can however recall how large that special place in my heart is for this little girl. Now at three years old, she has such a fun spirit and makes me laugh every time I see her. She's a hugger too! She too loves her cousin and was thrilled when my sister told her the morning Mia was born as demonstrated here. Graysen is similar to me. I think she'll be an athlete. She is so special and I just love her little self to pieces. I can't get enough of her, I just wish I could spend more time with her.
Upon my union with hubby, I was lucky enough to get two more special ladies in my life as well:
Lindsay - the oldest of all of the nieces - she is becoming quite the young lady. I look back on pictures of her when I first met Mark and wow how much (and how quickly) she has grown up. Lindsay is very sweet and loves Mia like crazy. She loves to hold her and doesn't want to leave her side when they are around each other. Over the holidays I captured this sweet picture of the two of them reading together. She's very creative and will definitely be the performer of the family. She writes plays and her Uncle Mark will often videotape them. They will make for great blackmail once she starts dating!! Haha!! Unfortunately we don't get to see each other enough, but I am certainly blessed.
Samantha "Sami" - What a cool kid Sam is! A lover of vegetables and fruits, this little fire cracker has really come out of her shell the past couple of years. When I first met Mark, she was just a baby and now she has transformed into a such a little lady. She too loves her cousin. One of my most recent and favorite pictures of her reading a book to Mia. Sam is very laid back and relaxed most of the time. Like Lindsay, I don't get to see her enough, but I have been certainly blessed by her as well.
To all my girls:
I love you each more than I can ever express to you in words. You are each very special to me in your own different ways. Thank you for being a part of my life and always bringing a smile to my face.
Love Always,
Aunt Melly/Melissa

Monday, February 21, 2011

Products Anonymous

Seriously, It Should Be A Club And I Should Be President I'm a product junkie! There is just something about buying a product - a candle, a new lotion, a new eyeshadow or a new lipstick, among many, many other things. I love buying new stuff to try for my body and mostly my hair. I love hand lotions, face lotions, face masks, scrubs, body wash, anything that makes me feel super clean, soft, smooth, you know the I'm still in my 20's type feeling. A few issues to point out: Issue #1: Serious problem = Bath and Body Works...serious. I have more body sprays and lotions than any one person should every own, but I get bored easily and changing what I smell like helps this "small" issue of mine. Issue #2: Grounded - I recently put myself on restriction from buying any more hair products mostly due to the fact the my bathroom cabinet is practically overflowing with shampoo and conditioner. So for a few months now I have been using what I have instead of buying something new or more of my absolute fav - go me! My husband is thanking me. He doesn't get why my hair products have the price tags that they do, but they do and they are worth every penny hunny promise, k? Issue #3: MAC eyeshadow - nuff said. Other than those three, I am pretty normal (I think???). Several other bloggers I follow do product reviews and I enjoy reading and hearing about what other people like and try. One I enjoyed recently was Hi, My Name is Kelli. New product of the week (oops) - TreSemme Dry Shampoo. OK here's the dealio with this one. I wash my hair every other day, but lately I have noticed that by skipping that day my hair is getting a little more oily than I prefer. I'm trying to save time in the morning, not gross out my co-workers and husband. This time saver is not intended to be obvious (i.e., snooty girl alert by stating this forthcoming comment, but you have been warned - a co-worker had a super greasy scalp that I was very easily distracted by in a meeting last week. I thought to myself, "I hope that is not what mine looks like.") Anywhooooo....I saw the commercial for this stuff and figured I would try it. Gave it a shot this morning and I like it. The shampoo didn't have a huge odor, which was a concern of mine and it didn't cover my hair with a pastey-like substance which was another concern of mine. A few sprays, wait a few minutes, brush and done. I even curled my hair this morning and it has helped keep the curls curlier too. Most importantly, it was only $4.79 at Target (Yay! Woo! Love! Let me count the ways!). Way, way cheaper than what I would have found in my normal hair product store. Again, go me!! After my girls weekend this past weekend (more about that later this week) my husband might take away my wallet, so every little saved penny helps. Let me know what you think. Have you tried any dry shampoos? Any other must have products that you love? Do tell, do tell!

Friday, February 18, 2011

"Smart?" I Think That May Be Questionable

How are these safe? Can someone please explain? I understand the purpose and I, as should everyone else, try to do my best to lower my carbon footprint, however these cars are crazy and to be perfectly honest they kind of freak me out. I also am first to point out that I am not a small person. I'm not quite sure my almost 6'3" frame could squeeze into one of these babies. Each time I see one driving down the highway my heart rate quickens and I start taking shorter breaths just thinking about what would happen if they got into an accident (worry wart, me??, well kinda). I keep seeing more and more of them, typically driven my those 50+ (mostly due to the price tag I would venture to guess). What are your thoughts? Would you buy one if price was not the issue, you didn't have children or tons of stuff to lug from point A to point B? However, should I ever choose to purchase such a vehicle, it would most definitely have to be pink! Sidenote - I am super jealous of Paris Hilton's pink Bentley. It's a secret, so don't tell k? You should google it. I really, really heart pink. I'm just fooling you, I'm not 32, I'm still 5, but I can drive. Amazing, huh? Is it a coincidence that when "googling" a picture of a smart car, that a website/blog titled "1000 Ways To Die" popped up? I think not! My point exactly.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

It's What's For Lunch

Seriously, ick! Why, why, why?
I try to network a decent amount. I like getting out, meeting new people and staying on the up and up of the news and other happenings in my industry. I think it's a vital part of being a professional business woman and part of my job, but mostly I really enjoy it.
However, several of the luncheons I attend throughout the year do not offer edible options for lunch and I end up eating the vegetable and dessert and am starving by 3:30 pm. The veggie cancels out the fat and calories in the dessert, just FYI.
Today, in example, the event offered salmon. Every year, salmon. I'm not a fan of seafood and even if I was, I think it's a weird thing to offer for lunch. The smell alone that permeates the room for the remainder of the presentation is enough to make me sick. I remember when I attended this function and was pregnant I had to leave early. I hate leaving early. I'm a strong believer in the simple courtesy that if you plan to attend a function, if you cannot stay for its entirety you should not attend at all. I think it's rude and disrespectful to the organizers and most importantly the invited guest speaker (we are trying to represent STL in a positive manner, not in an "armpit of the US" manner). Also, turn off your cell phones during the presentation, shall I continue...
Stick with chicken. I think chicken is safe. What do you think? As a non-seafood eater am I overreacting about this?
I'm a strong believer in Chick-Fil-A (seriously could the food or service get any better for a fast food option) and I must say, they are right...Eat Mor Chikin!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Today in Pictures

So I am utterly annoyed today, so I shall express my day in pictures:
This is what I feel like doing...I could really use a punching bag kinda like this lady (I'm not violent, I promise)...

Dude, I completely get it and I'm right there with ya...

This one is mostly due to the fact that I just couldn't help myself, it makes me laugh and I look forward to the day that I may have the actual nerve to do something such as this during said annoying escapade interrupting my day to day. Most likely it will never happen, but a girl can dream (and pretend)...

Now I'm off for a very special date with a very special blonde haired, blue eyed girl. She's not annoying.

Monday, February 14, 2011

I Heart Him, I Really, Really Heart Him

Clearly, if you've been following along, you know that I really, really love my husband. I have referenced this here, here, and here.
On this Valentine's Day here are some of the many reasons, in no particular order, why he is the best one for me:
1. He makes me laugh. He called me this morning to wish me a Happy Valentine's Day, but said Happy VD instead.
2. My hubby has an old soul and a young spirit, therefore most of the time when he references certain shows or songs, I have no idea what he is talking about, but I like to listen and make fun of him anyway. There is a 7 year age difference between the two of us, so there is a huge gap in what we both grew up watching and listening to (Example #1 - me - New Kids on the Block and 90210, Mark - Ozzy and Andy Griffith).
3. His cooking....Mmmmmm, yummy! Thank goodness he does cooks otherwise it would be PB&J's with mac n' cheese every night.
4. He will watch The Grammy's, The Golden Globes and the Oscars with me even though I know he would rather not. He even sometimes tolerates my reality TV junkie self.
5. He'll laugh with me, even when I'm not as funny as I think I am.
6. He can clean (and he's detailed about it!) and does laundry.
7. He keeps a pretty strict poopy diaper count on the weekends. He doesn't want to overexert in this category. He is so much better now, but I remember when we first brought Mia home and for the first several months (wow, I'm covering poop here, go parenting!), Mark would hold his breath so tight when he would change her poopy diapers. I'm not sure how he held his breath that long without passing out, but he is now the diaper changing champion. He fears no smells :)
8. He's such a great dad! Nuff said there.
9. He will go get me wine when I run out :)
10. He's adorable, handsome and still gives me butterflies in my tummy.
Happy Valentine's Day to my man! MMMMMUuuaw!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Joy of Love: My Nieces Part Uno

Girls, Please stop growing up so quickly. It's making me sad. I love you both very, very much, Aunt Melly I'll write more about these cuties a little later, but somedays when I see new pictures of them it just kills me.

Cool, Cool, Cool Tricks and Hey Louie

Seriously, the cuteness that is going on with my child right now is some days overwhelming. She cracks me up, every single day! The mimicking is just too awesome... Example #1: She loves Yo Gabba Gabba. I was kinda of hoping she wouldn't for the mere fact that I find the characters to be a bit on the creepy side and how do they come up with these names, I mean Fuffa...really? However after watching a few episodes (ok every single one, multiple times who am I kidding) they do teach some really great and simple lessons. She got a DVD for Christmas and we moved our old TV and DVD player to her playroom as to avoid putting it in the basement and it collect dust instead. She loves it. She can turn on the TV, the DVD player and play the DVD without any assistance from us. Not my proudest parenting moment, but still amazing to me nonetheless (she turned 15 months last week). Well throughout the show they have kids come on to show their cool tricks - spoon on nose type stuff, etc. Now she is mimicking the voice over - cool, cool, cool tricks! Example #2: Mia loves her dogs. Lucy is definitely becoming the favorite and more so because she is much more tolerant of a toddler than Jeff who is our eldest "child." She calls her Louie/Lulu and has for quite some time. Both Mark and I call her that amongst a million other things, some of which we do not say during "Mia Awake Time." A few weeks back she started saying Hey Louie every time she would walk by or sit next to Lucy. Well now she is saying it to everyone. She was waving and calling everyone Louie last Sunday on our way to our cousins. Hey Louie, Hey Louie (picture the little chubby arm and hand stretched out and waving back and forth). Hilarious!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Sign of the Apocalypse

My cell phone is not working. Starting last Sunday, my battery started dying much quicker than normal. By much quicker, I mean by 10:30 am Sunday morning it was telling me to Connect to Charger....wha????? I usually only have to charge my phone at night. It's been this way since I got my phone in the fall. I love my phone, but I am very frustrated with it right now. Shame on it for not understanding my feelings and acting out like it is. The touch screen is not always working, it's freezing up and will automatically turn itself off on occasion. Fun right? No. Not. Fun! I feel like my world is coming to an end and crashing all around me. That is how serious I am about my phone. After posting on FB and requesting suggestions from other EVO users, talking with our company Sprint rep (who is also one of my tenants and right across the hall and no help by the way) and talking once with tech support, my phone is still this same this very Thursday as it was on Sunday. I have an appointment at one of the retail locations close to my office this morning. Please, please, please phone Gods fix my phone. I can't live without this phone. Seriously, I can't. Update: After 30 minutes at the Sprint store, I think the problem has been determined. The area where my charge actually plugs into my phone was showing signs that it had been wet (the green, icky color on the metal). They handed it over to a tech who checked on my battery and other things and would be attempting to clean the so called wet affected area. As I was sitting and waiting (mind you trying to figure out how to spend the next 20 minutes without my phone, what do I do with my hands) I was thinking to myself how did my phone get wet. It has not been around water, ever...then I realized I had a one year old child who loves her Mommy's cell phone and who chews on it all.the.time. I try to say no, but it's too much of a battle at the end of the day (pick and choose, bad Mom, whatever). That's it! It was Mia! Anywhooooo, it appears to be back in business, but we shall see. I've been back to the office for about 2 hours and still have more than 1/2 my battery. The End (please, please phone Gods and thank you for helping me today).

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

What Time Is It?

It's not even 10:00 am and I feel like I have been up for an entire day. My day started with a 7:00 am breakfast meeting which meant I had to be out the door no later than 6:15 am. Not only did I have to be out the door, but it's was a networking/forecast function which means a lot of people were there which means Melissa has to step it up a bit in the hair and clothes department for the day. I curled my hair and everything!!! :) I'm feeling pretty good right now. I've had two cups of coffee, a glass of apple juice and now I'm working on a Diet Pepsi. I'm pretty sure this will be me once I have my afternoon crash. Luckily I have a venue tour for a Committee I am on, so I get to head out at 1:30 today and have an active, out of the office afternoon. Otherwise, I'm not sure I would make it. It's only Wednesday too. Phew...this week is wearing me out! And next week I have lunch meetings three of the five days (at this time, hopefully nothing more gets added to that). Did I mention it was 5 below this morning and we are supposed to have a whopping high of 20 today? Awesome. Positive news though on the weather front - it's supposed to be near 50 on Sunday! Yippee!!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Joy of Love: Cousins

Mark and I are very blessed to have a very close relationship with his cousin Dawn, her partner Lori and their children Justin and Avery. What a great family they are! Since I have gone back to work, after my maternity leave, Dawn has taken extra special care of our little girl. With the exception of the past month or so because of the weather, etc. Mia has been over at her house at least once a week since last January. And Ms. Mia loves all four of them! She is so excited to see each and every one of them each time she goes to visit. They take her to do all sorts of fun things and specifically request her when Lori will take off work for a special day. I love that they love her as much as they do!
It had been quite a while since we had seen them, but we finally got together last Sunday for the Super Bowl. On the way over, I was talking to Mia about where we were going. For a while now she has been calling Lori, Loooooooo, but on the way there she said Lowi instead. It's so cute to hear her say the names of the people in her family. As soon as we walked in the door, Mia went straight to Dawn. She hasn't grasped the concept of her name just yet, but she loves her Aunt Dawny nonetheless.
Dawn - what a wonderful person she is! She is so caring and has a very deep compassion for her family. She is a phenomenal mother and takes very good care of her children. Without hesitation she would do anything for me, Mark or Mia. She's just that warm. Dawn is one of the best cooks. She took very good care of us when we first brought Mia home and she still cooks us food every once in a while. It's such a blessing not to have to cook when I get home from work. She is similar to me in some ways, we both love to decorate (she actually gets to do it), we both love to chit chat, we both try to keep the peace (although I was challenged with this late last year), we both have ADD, we both love wine and we both love to laugh. I truly feel that Dawn was placed in my life for a very specific reason. She's a protector and Mark and I have really needed that lately.

Lori - I haven't really gotten to know Lori that well until this past year. Lori is a techy just like me and she loves movies and football, just like Mark. She is just an all around awesome person. There is no drama with Lori, which I really appreciate. Most recently, I have realized she is also a great person to go to for advice and direction. What a great Bubby she is! Her kids adore her and I love the fact that every time I am over there I see her hug one of her kids at least one time. I wish all families embraced their children as much as Dawn and Lori do. My family did and it's an amazing feeling to feel that loved. Oh my gosh and how cute are Lori (excuse me, Lowi) and Mia!!! Did I mention she likes wine too?

Photo courtesy of Lori S.

Justin - J Dawg - What a cool kid! I have been with Mark almost 10 years now and when I first met Justin he was just a little kid and now he's a teenager. His deep voice catches me off guard sometimes, but it's mostly just because I just don't want him to be that old. Justin is very independent, but it's completely understandable. He is the sole boy in the family. All the other kids are girls! Poor guy! I don't talk with him a lot, but when I do he almost always makes me laugh. Example from the end of the Super Bowl:
Justin (running into the theater room): "Who won?" Melissa: "The Packers" Justin: "crap" Mia loves Justin. As soon as she seems him, she gets so excited and runs right up to him. I think she did that at least 3 or 4 times on Sunday. Avery - or shall I say Miss Avery - what a girly girl she is and I love it! What I love best about this kid is her creativity. She is always making something or drawing something and she loves to share her works of art. She most recently made a scarf for Mia, but she also did all the banners for their Super Bowl party. I think she will be a pastry chef or a chef in some manner some day. Avery has always taken very special care of Mia. It's very cute! She loves to hug her and give her kisses. I had my first Just Dance (Wii game) experience with Avery on Sunday. What a great workout and so much fun! I kept up pretty well and she told me I wasn't old! Bonus! Thanks guys for being so great to me, to Mark and most importantly to our little Meemers. I appreciate you for all that you are and all that you do. I'm looking forward to many, many more memories.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Joy of Love: My Sisters

This month, after some inspiration from another blogger/photographer Elizabeth Hall, I am going to focus on the people I love. It's the month of Valentine's Day so why not share the love all month. Today, I choose my sisters. I have two and I'm the middle one. I've always been the glue of the three of us. I aim to please and just want everyone to be happy. We've had our moments. Some of us were tormented by another more than others growing up (not mentioning any names...) and some of us had more ballet skirts than others (again, not mentioning any names...) but at the end of the day there is a special bond between sisters regardless of any conflicts that come along the way. What fun would it be if we were exactly the same anyway? It's hard to figure out where to begin with these two. There is an eight year difference between the two of them and they are as unsimilar as they are similar. We have shared so many wonderful memories and traditions together. I hope that my child(ren) are just as lucky to have an amazing childhood like we did. We are all who we are because of our wonderful parents. We share a love of many things - holidays, movies (the quotes and laugh attacks being some of the best parts) and family time to name a few. My sisters are both amazing in their own way and I am so very, very blessed to have them both and am forever grateful for all of the wonderful experiences and memories I have shared with both of them. Lindsay (Linner, Linny, Luda): The youngest. God love her for being the youngest, the princess, the one who got away with more - ha! She's artistic and has little fear. She's beautiful. She's searching for her place in this world. She's young and eager. She's a phenomenal dancer, choreographer and photographer ( Luckily, I am blessed that she documented much of Mia's first year through her brilliant photography. She's a visionary. She's focused. She's a wife and a great cook. She's my best friend and she's always up for a good time. She loves to throw parties and comes up with really fun themes (it's too bad I miss most of them). I envy her artistic traits. I missed the boat on that some how. I have my moments, but Linny has a strong visual sense that I do not. Whether it be in her dance, her photos or her food, she always finds a way to make it all come together just perfect. Unfortunately we don't get to see each other as much as I would like, but hopefully that will change in time (with children most likely, ahem, no pressure). Shannon (Shanny, Janet): The oldest. God love her for having to set the precedent for the rest of us. She's crafty and a phenomenal cook. Again, not sure how I missed the boat on the cooking thing. Seriously. She makes some of the best meals and some of the most creative cakes and other culinary concoctions. She has a great style both in her decorating and her personality. You walk into her house and you feel like you stepped into Pottery Barn. She's a business woman ( and a mom (of two awesome girls)...and a wife. She's busy. She's my best friend. She's a good sounding board for a lot of my venting sessions. She's strong. She's fun. She loves wine just as much as me! She lives by me, which is a super bonus, but I still don't see her as much as I would like. To both of my sisters: You are wonderful and amazing and I probably have never told you how much you are appreciated. I am lucky to have you. Thank you for who you are and thank you for helping me be the person that I am today. With that I will be forever grateful. I look forward to all of the many, many more memories to come. With Love, Melly A sister is a gift to the heart, a friend to the spirit, a golden thread to the meaning of life.-- Isadora James

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Wow! I can't believe I actually did it. It only took me 32 years, but I finally went up in the Gateway Arch. It's a national monument, in a city where I have lived almost my entire life and not once have I been up to the top - 630 feet.
Here are a few reasons why I had not taken part in this particular journey:
1. I am my father's daughter. We are both not a fan of confined spaces.
2. I am claustrophobic. Refer back to #1.
3. I have a fear of heights. I may have a bit of a control problem. I don't like to be off the ground. In my car I'm ok, but planes, etc. make me a nervous wreck.
4. The Arch lost electricity just a few years ago and people were stuck for hours. That thought is paralyzing to me.
5. I had a pretty good idea that this would make me feel like I couldn't breath and that the trip up, however long it may be, would make me feel like I was suffocating. Mind you the trip up is only 4 minutes and down is only 3.
6. I was unaware of the actual size of the pod, capsule, whatever you want to call it, but the visuals I had created in my head were not helping.
Here are the reasons why I decided to put on my big girl pants and do it:
1. Family Fun Time!
2. I only have one chance on this earth to do the things I want. I should probably take advantage of my own city a little more.
3. I'm 32...enough with the wimpy stuff.
4. I have a daughter and wanted to share it with her and document it so she can look back on it when she is older. Even more so, by testing my fears she will hopefully be fearless (I may be setting myself up for a diffcult teenage age, but oh well, live and learn).
5. My hubby hadn't been since he was a kid and he didn't recall much of it and he was on board to go up again.
6. What's the worst that can happen right? (I can say this now of course)
I am so glad I did this. The pod/capsule/thingy had a window to see out as we went up and down and this helped me immensely. The view from the top was pretty extraordinary and worth all of the anxiety it caused me leading up to the moment the doors closed and we started our journey to the top. It was the only time I would ever see a view of the city in this way. It was a great memory and I can now check this off my list.