27th Mar2014

Sloan + Themis: Vintage and Repurposed Jewelry

by Daenel

Sometimes my real and online worlds collide and it’s a fabulous thing. That’s what happened last Saturday. My worlds collided and it was all kinds of cool…

Cape Girardeau {Living Outside the Stacks}

On Saturdays, The Hubs and I have a routine that involves breakfast, running errands, and wandering the streets of downtown Cape Girardeau. We love walking along the water front and roaming through the historic district. It’s a beautiful area, full of quaint little antique stores, restaurants, and galleries. That’s one of the things I absolutely adore about this area, there’s a vibrant local community of folks who’re really interested in restoring, developing, and maintaining the history of this area and reaching out to new people and making them feel at home

A few weeks ago, I noticed that I had a new follower on Instagram and Twitter. So I checked them out and saw that it was a locally owned jewelry company called Sloan + Themis. Yay, I love when local companies follow me because it gives me new places to explore.

Sloan + Themis {Living Outside the Stacks}

As we were walking, I noticed a sign and said to The Hubs, “Hey, let’s go in there. They just started following me on Instagram…” So we walked inside and I was immediately swept away.

Sloan + Themis {Living Outside the Stacks}

The interior reminded me of a mix of the grottos in Italy, the historic buildings of New Orleans, and those really cool silver stream campers that have been all glamped up. Everything was perfectly thought out: the paint colors, the music, even the smells mixed to create a warm and inviting environment. Y’all know I’m in the process of redecorating my family room and seeing this space made me totally rethink my original plan

Sloan + Themis {Living Outside the Stacks}

While we were looking around, the owner came out and introduced herself. “I know you,” she said, “you’re the librarian!” giggle Claire is such a sweet and funny person. It turns out that she and I have a lot in common: we’ve both lived in Mississippi, have sisters who live in Tennessee, and share a love for all things vintage and slightly bohemian.

She told me about the store and how it came to be…

Sloan + Themis started as an online store and became a brick and mortar store when she discovered the current location while out jogging. A fellow runner, y’all! The store specializes in vintage pieces and handmade jewelry made from upcycled materials.

Sloan + Themis {Living Outside the Stacks}

This bracelet is made with a vintage glass charm, fresh water pearls, and turquoise. Isn’t it just lovely? I can so see this all edgy stacked between a black leather cord bracelet and silver bangles with boyfriend jeans and a plain white tee or earth mothery nestled between a cuff and an armload of beaded bracelets, which Sloan + Themis carries, with a cute sweater and a flowy peasant skirt.

Sloan + Themis {Living Outside the Stacks}

And don’t you just love these necklaces? I think they’d make beautiful bride’s maids gifts or, even better, an “I love me and I deserve something special gift”.

Sloan + Themis {Living Outside the Stacks}

If you’re in the area, please stop by and say “hi” to Claire. You can also follow Sloan + Themis on Facebook,  Instagram, and Twitter, or shop online at Sloan + Themis.
Daenel T




Disclaimer: I did not receive any compensation for this post, I’m just a very big fan of buying local and supporting small businesses.

30th Jul2013

Coffee Talk {In the Cafe}

by Daenel

Coffee Talk {Living Outside the Stacks}

Hi, and welcome to Coffee Talk. In case you’re new here, this is where I share some of the great and not~so~great stuff that I find on the web. Topics range from news stories that leave me scratchin’ my head to DIYs that I think are absolutely clever. And, who knows, there may even be a recipe thrown in here or there just for fun.

So grab a cup of coffee {or tea or whatever floats your boat} and let’s talk…

1. O. J. Simpson is asking to be released from prison early. blank stare He’s served nearly 5 years of his 33 year sentence and believes that he should be released because he’s been a model prisoner.  I guess he still doesn’t realize that he’s not really in prison for “stealing back his own stuff” but because the original prosecutors couldn’t make the murder charges stick. Whatevs, I know I’m not the only one who believes that’s why that man is really in jail. He got away with murder {even if he didn’t do it, I think he knows who did}, all he had to do was stay out of the public eye, but noooo, he had to keep working people’s nerves, now look…

2. I read that if you don’t have time to try on a pair of jeans before you buy them, you can do the “Neck Trick”: hold the jeans up to your neck, wrap the waist of the jeans around your neck so the ends touch,  if the waist band fits comfortably around your neck, they’ll fit your waist. I triple dog dare you to go into a store, try that trick, have someone take your picture, and post it.

3. Are you having a bad day? Click here. You’re welcome.

What had you scratchin’ your head this past week?

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16th Nov2012

Things That Leave Me Scratchin’ My Head {Coffee Talk}

by Daenel

Coffee Talk {Living Outside the Stacks}1. I guess judges are getting tired of people doing dumb stuff and making taxpayers for their stupidity, so they’re finding creative ways to punish them. A Cleveland Municipal judge ordered a woman to stand at an intersection holding a sign that read: “Only an idiot would drive on the sidewalk to avoid a school bus.” Yes, you read that right. That woman drove on the sidewalk to pass a bus that was unloading children.  Shaking my head

2. When I first read that some people were so salty over the elections that they filed petitions to secede from the union, I thought it was just another crazy Facebook meme until I read about them on the Washington Post website. Y’all seriously? Let me tell you something about this great country of ours… This is a democracy, the people speak every 4 years. The people chose to re~elect President Obama, so you deal. And in 4 years, when you get another chance at the White House, present a stronger message! Second, this is a free country. No one is holding you hostage. If you don’t like it, leave and go to one of those countries where you’re not free to voice an opinion or pick who governs you. For the record, this would be my opinion regardless of who’s sitting in the White House.

3. I know pregnancy makes you crazy… I once dreamed that ginormous Power Rangers chased me and the hubs into a church. The pink one ripped the roof off the building, picked the hubs up and ate him. But this lady takes crazy pregnant lady to a whole new level: an Arizona woman was so upset when she found out that her husband didn’t vote that she ran over her husband with her SUV. Her fear? That President Obama’s re~election will bring hardship to her family. Oy! I guess in the grand scheme of things, secession makes so much more sense and murder is much easier than divorce.

4. I love a deal. No, I really love a good deal and will share info about a great deal with anyone who’ll listen. But I love spending time with my family even more. And I’m almost positive that other people love deals and spending time with their families just as much as I do.  So why is it that a certain segment of our population is being denied the right to spend time with their families because people have decided that Black Friday deals should begin on Thanksgiving evening? What the heck? Are you seriously telling me that people cannot wait until Friday morning to begin Black Friday shopping? Thanksgiving is supposed to be about spending time with loved ones, not going out and trying to kill yourself to buy a $20 discounted item that no one’s gonna remember 6 months from now but will make repeat appearances on the credit card bill for the next 4 years. Stop the madness!

What had you scratchin’ your head this week?

13th Oct2012

Brown Boots and a Recipe {Shoe Style Saturday}

by Daenel

Shoe Style Saturday {Living Outside the Stacks}

Happy Saturday! Do you have plans for this weekend? So far, I got nothin’. I may talk the hubs into visiting some more antique shops downtown. We’ve been doing that a lot lately. I’m totally digging the idea of upcycling and repurposing things. And the hubs is really getting in to it too. In fact, one of our favorite places right now is a little shop called Annie Laurie’s Antiques. You can read all about it by clicking here.

This is our living room, the space we’re currently trying to decorate… I love the wall color and the wood ceiling. At first, I thought it’d be a little too cabiney for me but now that we’ve moved our stuff in, it feels cozy. And the colors are just this side of funky.

Living Room {Living Outside the Stacks}

We’re trying to find unique pieces to fill in some of the empty spaces. I think plants would look nice in the corners but we need some “personality” pieces too. The hubs would like to print and mat three of my photos to hang on the wall above the sofa. Right now, we’re about 100% certain that this picture will be the centerpiece.

I’d also like to take some time this weekend to set up a schedule for blogging. Now that I’m working, I find that I don’t have as much time to write or take pictures as I used to. Or, at least, not without taking time away from my family. When we moved here, our goal was to spend more time together as a family, you know, eat meals together, watch movies, just hang out… So I really need to find a balance.

I also want to cook more. Now that it’s getting cooler, I’m starting to crave soups, stews and heavy vegetables. That’s probably why I was all kinds of excited when I came across this recipe for Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Apples by Shelly at Life on the Wild Side. For the recipe, click hereSeriously, doesn’t that look like the most delicious comfort meal ever? Cannot wait to try it.

What are your weekend plans?

04th Oct2012

Annie Laurie’s Antiques {Getting to Know Missouri}

by Daenel

Recently, I attended a presentation called “The Psychology of Now… In Retail and Fashion” by Lynn R. Moore. During the presentation, Lynn talked about current trends in retail and how people have shifted their thought from “I must have new” to “How can I reuse and/or recycle?” She talked about how people are thrifting more, shopping in vintage/second hand shops, garage sales, etc and upcycling their finds. She ended her talk with a discussion about the importance of buying local.

One of the stores she mentioned was Annie Laurie’s Antiques. Now I’d been hearing about this shop pretty much since I moved to Missouri but I never quite found the time to pay a visit. But after hearing the rave reviews from Lynn (and eyeballing a beautiful necklace she was wearing), I decided that no matter what I was making a trip.

Annie Lauries Antiques {Living Outside the Stacks}

I ended up going two days in a row. Once by myself and the second time with the hubs.

Annie Lauries Antiques {Living Outside the Stacks}

Annie Lauries Antiques {Living Outside the Stacks}

I absolutely adored the whimsical decor. See those frames, wouldn’t they make fabulous memory boards? Or chalk board frames? And, come on, umbrellas hanging from the ceiling? Fabulous!

Annie Lauries Antiques {Living Outside the Stacks}

My first trip was spent scoping the place out. I found a couple of pairs of boots that I absolutely adored but they were too small…

Annie Lauries Antiques {Living Outside the Stacks}

I also spied some fabric I thought would be make a lovely new slipcover for a bench the hubs and I had picked up from an earlier trip to a second hand store. Vintage luggage tabletops, anyone?

And, of course, there were all sorts of fun little things such as bird cages, globes and old books (be still my bird fearing wanderlust having librarian heart).

Annie Lauries Antiques {Living Outside the Stacks}

Annie Laurie's Antiques {Living Outside the Stacks}

The hubs and I will definitely be going back, we have lots of space to fill in our home.

Do you shop second hand stores? Are you a thrifter? What was your last purchase?

10th Aug2012

Things That Leave Me Scratchin’ My Head {Coffee Talk}

by Daenel

Coffee Talk1. Honey Boo Boo. What in the world is this craziness on TLC? Have you seen that show “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo”? I didn’t realize what it was when I first turned it on, I honestly thought it was a new cartoon on one of the kiddie channels. Why in the world would parents subject their kids to that kind of madness? You know, everyone in the world is going to be dogging those kids out (and their parents). How is this helpful to the kids? I know the parents are probably making money off this but pimping out the babies and setting them up for ridicule? Yeah, not cool.

2. I’m not sure whether to laugh or cry at this story about eleven people vying for $50,000 in a texting contest. TEXTING, y’all! $50,000. For. Texting. Seriously, I’m in the wrong business.

3. Have you heard about the death of Max Shacknai? He’s the 6~year~old son of Medicis Pharmaceuticals founder and CEO Jonah Shacknai. Anyway, a few months ago, he fell over the balcony at his father’s mansion and died a few days later. At the time of his injury, Max was in the care of his father’s girlfriend and her younger sister. He died four days after the accident, his death was ruled a suicide. Two days later, the girlfriend was found hanging naked from an outdoor balcony with her hands and feet bound. Her death was ruled a suicide. blank stare How many things can you find wrong with that story? Now that Max’s death has been ruled a possible homicide, maybe the “suicide” will be investigated as well.

4. Have you seen that commercial for Walmart where the ladies are having a clothes party and at the end they find out the clothes are from Walmart? I hate that commercial. It just seems so, I dunno, fake. “I’ve never bought children’s clothes from Walmart before.” Sorry, lady, you just don’t look like you only shop on 5th Avenue. Oh, and while I’m discussing commercials that I hate, that stupid Drano commercial with the lady and the two handy men ~ vile. I detest that commercial and I’ll be glad when it’s run it’s course.

What had you scratching your head this week?

06th Feb2012

My Monday: Vlog Style

by Daenel

Mr. 16 asked me to go with him to pick out a Valentine’s Day gift for his friend girl. I was thrilled and, of course, a little bit emotional. My baby boy is growing up… He chose a beautiful earring and pendant set. Seriously, doesn’t my son have good taste?

Mr. 16's Gift

On Saturday morning, the hubs and I attended a marriage empowerment session at our church, The Rock International Ministries, that was taught by Eddie and Cathy Williams of TCT Television. They talked about building trust, establishing a reciprocal relationship and communicating effectively with each other by using the Bible as our handbook for marriage. They concluded the session by giving us a list of things we should do in our marriages to keep the flames flickering…

Complete list of “Do Yous” courtesy of Eddie and Cathy Williams:

  1. Do you catch your spouse’s glance across the room?
  2. Do you date?
  3. Do you call just to say “I love you”?
  4. Do you hold each other without the expectation of further “holding”?
  5. Do you pray for your spouse every day?
  6. Do you know your spouse’s goals?

You can find out more about the Williams’ ministry by clicking here.

How was your weekend? How’d you enjoy the Super Bowl?

29th May2011

Loose Threads and Other Random Thoughts

by Daenel

Heart of Haiti

1.On Friday I received a beautiful ‘Heart of Haiti‘ pendant in the mail in exchange for a post that I’d written on behalf of Macy’s, as I read the thank you letter, I couldn’t help but to cry thinking about the artisans who create the pendants.  These are women who create handmade works of art to support themselves and their children.  Items range in price from about $8 to about $280.  I’m not receiving any compensation for this, I just think this is a terrific cause.

The Girls on The Back Mountain Trail

To see more pictures from our walk, click the picture

2.  I bribe my kids.  People often ask me how I managed to have such well behaved kids and that’s the answer, I bribe them.  Not with money, I’m a librarian, I don’t have that much.  I bribe them with walks.  I keep them in the house until I want them to do something, then I promise them some quality time with Mother Nature in exchange for some free labor.  Yesterday I promised them a walk along The Back Mountain Trail.  All they had to do was clean the house.  Mostly I wanted the bathroom done.  But they dusted, swept and mopped their little hearts out.  So we went out.  On a 5 mile walk.  The girls came home and slept from 3 PM til 10:30 PM.  I came home and chilled in front of the TV.

Ugli Fruit

3.  The hubs and I went grocery shopping and as I was scanning the fruit section, I saw those ugly little things above.  They’re actually called “Ugli Fruit”.  Ummmmm, they look like rotten oranges to me.  I won’t be trying them any time soon.


4.  I think I have some sort of problem.  I love to pluck my eyebrows.  I don’t get them waxed as often as I should, but you should see me with a mirror and a pair of tweezers…  There is something, ummmm, therapeutic about pulling out those stray hairs.  Now I’m gonna be tweezing away with the little cutie I found at the store the other day. Seriously, aren’t those the cutest tweezers ever?

5.  So today the hubs and I had a bit of a “discussion” about what is and is not appropriate out~of~house wear.  This is how it started…  I bought a maxi dress yesterday while we were out, at his suggestion because he thought it was cute.  Today I wanted to wear it but my bra was showing, so I said I’d have to find a tank or cami to wear under it and the hubs suggested I go bra~less.  dead I whipped off the strapless, pulled up the dress straps and stood there looking at him, fully thinking he’d see the danger of such a suggestion.  Never mind the fact that everything dropped 6 inches but let’s think about the potential harm that could come from any pot holes.  He assured me that it was all in my head and that things were fine.  As soon as he walked out of the room, I changed into a pair of shorts and a peasant shirt.  With a bra.

So my question to you is, would you go bra~less in public?

20th May2011

Miss 17 Goes to Prom

by Daenel

You know how you have a teenage daughter and they sigh and huff at everything because you just don’t get it because you’re only mom and you’ve never been cool?  Yeah, last week that was me with Miss 17 as we drove around for 5 and a half hours looking for a Prom dress.  Well, it took the hubs all of 10 minutes to solve the problem.

The hubs:  “Why don’t you go online and buy a dress from the same place you bought last year’s dress?”

Miss 17:  “OK.”

Me:  “Grrrrr….”

Seriously, she almost made me give up shopping for good.  That would have meant no food or clothing because that’s just how awful shopping with a teenager can be.  As much as we are alike, we can also be so totally different and she had this picture in her head of the dress that she wanted and nothing I said could change her mind.

Anyway, her dress was ordered on Friday and arrived Wednesday, the Prom is tonight.  Talk about nail biting.  I was guessed at her size and we prayed that her grandmother would be available to do any needed alterations.  She tried the dress on at her grandmother’s house while I was at work, the message on my phone simply said “It fits.”

I never saw her in the dress until tonight….

Miss 17 Going to Prom

I was floored.

This is the baby that I carried for nine months, whose snotty nose I wiped and whose scraped knees I kissed…

Miss 17 Going to the Prom

The only thing that’s seeing me through is that I have 2 more girls left at home to huff and puff every time I make suggestions.

06th May2011

Loose Threads and Other Random Thoughts

by Daenel


1.  Our dog, Squeekerz, has a bad attitude.  I suspect it’s because the kids named him “Squeekerz” and because they keep dressing him up like he’s a toy.  That’s him in the picture with Miss 15, you can’t see it but his eyes are screaming “Help me!”  When he was little, they used to dress him up in doll clothes…

2.  Next week begins Finals’ Week at the college.  I can’t believe I’ve been working at the library for a semester already.  It went by so fast.  I remember when I started, I wasn’t sure if I was going to make a connection with any of the students but last night a couple of them came into the library to show me their Capstone projects.  I remember when some of them started working on their projects and now to see the finished products…  It’s just really cool that they think enough of me to share.  Gives me warm fuzzies…

3.  I was pulled over by a cop on my way home from work a few nights ago.  I was speeding and got off with a warning.  I had totally zoned out while listening to the radio, trust me, I’ve learned my lesson.  Getting pulled over is embarrassing and so not cool.  The hubs said I’m getting old and have about 6 months left of getting out of tickets.  Yes, y’all, the man is bold.  The next day while grocery shopping with Miss 17, she pulled me aside and said “Hey, Mom, little dude was totally checking you out.  Tell Dad you may have a year left.”  Yep, my family’s got jokes.

4.  Papaya Mango Tea Snapple is some delicious stuff! And I’m so not a tea person, so you totally have to trust me on this one.  It was inspired by the TV show The Amazing Race™  and their trip to India.  One day I wanna go to India and buy an authentic sari and drink some real tea and get my eyebrows threaded, until then I’m totally thinking I’m gonna have to hoard this Snapple stuff.

5.  It’s possible to hate shopping.  Miss 17 and I went shopping for prom dresses today.  And after 5 and a 1/2 hours of running from store to store, what did we come home with?  Absolutely nothing but a headache and an intense dislike of shopping for anything that comes close to formal wear.

Dori All Dressed Up
6.  Dori is no longer nekkid!  Thanks to Skinit I was able to put a cute little outfit on my Droid.  Doesn’t she look all fashionable and er’rything?

How was your week?

23rd Feb2011

Pedestrian Rage? Yeah, I Got That

by Daenel
Shopping Rage

Image by Microsoft Clipart

When I was little my sister used to say I was like that cartoon character, Taz, spinning my way through life, laughing and carrying on while totally unaware of the destruction I left in my wake.  Hmmmm….  Now does that sound like me at all?   Anyway, when I read this article on iVillage about pedestrian rage, I thought about my sister and Taz.

First of all, let me explain, I don’t live anywhere near the busy streets of New York nor do I live within walking distance of anything remotely resembling a large city, in fact, traffic is often stopped because cows crossing.  Yes, I’m serious.  But there are times when I must venture into the city and come in contact with shudder people and that’s when I remember that people are one of the reasons I no longer live in the city.

I don’t mine the lovers holding hands and strolling through the stores.  Little people being dragged behind their parents doesn’t bother me.  Elderly folks shuffling to and fro are fine.  But what bothers me…what infuriates me…what boils my blood are people who come to a dead stop in the center of the aisle at the store.  Honestly, I wouldn’t mind if they stopped because something on a shelf caught their eye (I’ve been known to freeze at the sight of anything monkey related) but what bothers me is that they come to a halt with their shopping cart in the middle of the aisle so they can start talking real loud on their cell phones about stuff no one but their doctor should know.  Grrrrrr….  Then they turn around and give me dirty looks when I say “Excuse me” so I can pass.

Duuuuude, you’re the one who’s breaching all sorts of etiquette:

  • Disrupting the flow of traffic
  • Talking about personal business in a public setting
  • General buttheadedness

The proper thing to do is to move your cart to the side and then start talking or, better yet, tell the person you’ll call them back.  Trust me when I say, no one wants to hear about your rash, in fact, it’ll totally skeeve people and make them want to hit you with their carts and run.

Now tell me the truth, this is just between us, I’m not the only one who feels this way…  It bothers you when people just stop in the middle of the walkway too, doesn’t it?  Or are you one of those people?

21st Dec2010

Website Review: 6PM.com

by Daenel

6PM.comI’ve lived in Northeast Pennsylvania for 13 years and every year I promise myself that I’ll buy a decent pair of winter boots and this year I finally did it ~ I bought myself a decent pair of winter boots. But I’m not going to review the boots (not yet, anyway), I’m gonna review the website.

This is the second time I’ve purchased a pair of shoes from 6PM.com and this is the second time I’ve been impressed with the company.  The first time I ordered from them was a couple of years ago, I bought a pair of Clark’s Indigo shoes (which I love, by the way).  Shopping online for shoes can be hit or miss:

  • Are the shoes comfortable?
  • Do they run small or large?
  • Are they as cute in real life?

The questions about the product are endless but my concern is about the customer service ~ what happens if I have a problem with the shoes?

Well, I got the chance to find out.  When I first ordered the boots, I decided to go up a size because the interior of the shoes are lined with wool, after I placed the order I changed my mind.  I logged back into the site to change my order (or cancel and reorder) but I couldn’t because the order was already in process.  Seriously, it was only 15 minutes between the time I placed the order and when I changed my mind.  So I called customer service and explained to the CS rep what I wanted to do and she helped me out.

The order was placed on 15 December and the boots arrived on 20 December.  That’s a pretty good turnaround time.  Unfortunately, the boots have to be returned.  I wore them to work today and one of the grommets broke.  I work in a library, so I don’t do heavy physical labor…  Anyway, I called customer service again and was told that they normally don’t accept returns on shoes that have been worn but they’d make an exception for me.  I’ll be returning the shoes tomorrow and reordering another pair (that should tell you how much I adore the boots).

Would I recommend 6PM.com to my friends?  Absolutely.  Would I order from them again?  You bet I would.  The shoe selection is incredible (wide variety of styles, colors and sizes). I also thought the prices were fairly reasonable (anywhere from 25% to 80% off MSRP).  And they don’t just sell shoes, they also sell clothes, jewelry and other accessories.

11th Dec2010

That’s Where You Left Me at the Top of the Escalator

by Daenel

Woman with Shopping Bags on EscalatorI hear that sentence every time the kids and I pass the Wyoming Valley Mall.  And every time I hear it, I say “The statute of limitations has run out, let it go already.”  It’s been eleven years since that fateful day but she remembers it like it was yesterday….

For some reason I decided to take my four children ~ ages 2, 4, 4 and 6 years ~ to the mall with me while I did a little bit of shopping.  My children, like most kids their ages, were totally fascinated by the escalators.  Every time we went to the mall, they would beg to ride them but I’d put them off by promising them a pretzel or distracting them with anything bright and shiny.  However, this particular day, nothing would take their minds off the escalators, so I agreed that we’d take the escalators up and down.

We rode up the escalator without any problems.  The three older children stepped on the moving steps ahead of me ~ the twins were holding hands and giggling uncontrollably, the older one was in front of them and the baby was in my arms.  While we were on the top floor, which housed the men’s and the housewares  departments, I decided to do a little bit of looking around.  I made a small purchase and told the kids it was time to go.

We ended up in the same position on the down escalator as we did going up ~ oldest, twins then me EXCEPT I didn’t have the baby in my arms.  I turned around just in time to hear “Mommmmmeeeeeeeee!”  How in the world had I managed to leave my 2~year~old at the top of the escalator?  After what felt like the longest escalator ride ever, I tried to figure out how to get back up the escalator to grab my baby.

I tried to get the two~year~old to focus on the three older kids so I could run around to the other escalator and ride up to grab her but then the other kids started crying.  By this time, people were gathering around and watching.  Yes, they were watching instead of trying to help me.  Teenagers rode down the escalator past my daughter and snickered and laughed.  Finally, when I was at the point of tears, two elderly women yelled down to me not to worry they would bring her to me.

These two women ~ with canes ~ placed my daughter between them, held her hands, and brought her down the escalator.  I was so happy.  I hugged them both and thanked them profusely.  My two~year~old looked up at me with watery eyes, quivering lips and said “You left me at the top of the escawator.”  Heart break.

It’s been eleven years now and she still reminds me and anyone else within hearing distance that it took two elderly women with canes to return her to the fold. Sigh.

Do your children ever remind you of a bad mommy moment?

12th Sep2010

My Favorite Droid Apps

by Daenel

Android MarketA couple of months ago I traded my BlackBerry Storm in for a Motorola Droid which I immediately regretted.  In fact, the only reason I kept it longer than a few days was because my husband told me I needed to take some time to customize the phone play with it to see if I really didn’t like the phone.  I’m so happy that I listened to him.  He was right.  Please don’t ever tell him that I said that.  I absolutely positively heart my Droid.

Here are a few apps that have made my Droid so much more fun to use:

Health and Fitness

My Fitness ~ Easily track water intake, calories and exercise


Evernote ~ Capture information, share ideas, quickly


Google Sky Map ~ Point your phone at the sky and Google Sky Map will show you the stars, planets, constellations, etc

Kindle for Android

US Traffic ~ Simple app that shows traffic report for your neighborhood


Barcode Scanner ~ Scan barcodes on products and then look up the price, review, nearest store, etc.

Google Goggles ~ Take pictures of art work, landmarks, books, etc and the phone will search Google for information about the item

Grocery IQ ~ Create shopping lists either by typing in items or speaking into your phone; can also get coupons (haven’t used this feature yet but plan to on the next shopping trip)

Social Networking

Facebook for Droid

Foursquare for Droid

Seesmic ~ Allows you to manage multiple Twitter accounts on an easy~to~use interface

Do you have a Droid?  What are some of your favorite apps?

03rd Aug2010

Shopping in NEPA: 3 Sisters

by Daenel

3 SistersLast week I was at my favorite coffee shop, KB’s Coffee House, when this woman came inside wearing the most beautiful jewelry. Actually, I had seen her a couple of times before, the last time was at Miss 14’s orthodontist’s office, she was wearing fabulous pieces then too ~ tons of silver bracelets, a fabulous chunky ring and an awesome necklace.  Yes, I was totally scoping out this woman’s jewelry while trying not to look creepy.  So when I saw her at KB’s I decided to ask her about it.  It was a sign, right?

It turns out the jewelry came from a boutique called 3 Sisters which Catherine co~owns with her two sisters, Mary and Diane.  As Catherine was showing me her wrist, I was making a mental note to dump settle the hubs in front of the TV and visit her shop.  Sorry, but I cannot shop with my husband, I always feel rushed and I wanted the chance to browse.

Anyway, the boutique is a cute little shop nestled in United Penn Plaza in Kingston, Pennsylvania.  When you first walk in there are shelves of pottery and other knick knacks to the right and candles and other spa accoutrements to the left, straight down the center are shelves of various pieces of  jewelry ~ wooden rings, sterling bracelets, leather cuffs, beaded earrings, etc.  It was like the mother ship had called me home…  I wandered around trying to resist the urge to touch everything (in my head I could hear my mother’s voice saying If you can’t figure out what to do with your hands, put them in your pockets).  After twenty~five minutes I decided to purchase an Alexa’s Angels Prayer Box Bracelet and a leather flower cuff (I know I already have one but can one really have too many leather cuffs?).

The prices are very reasonable, ranging from $5 for rings to the triple digits for finer pieces of jewelry.  3 Sisters also sells soy candles, scarves, coffee mugs (which you know I’ll be purchasing next time, ’cause I love myself some funky coffee mugs) and other cool items.  If you’re ever in the area, check them out, I guarantee you’ll find something to love.

You can also shop online, free shipping on purchases over $75.  squee

Contact Information:

3 Sisters
182 United Penn Plaza
Kingston, PA 18704
Hrs: Mon ~ Sat 10 AM ~ 5:30 PM
Thurs ~ 10 AM ~ 7 PM

Disclosure: I did not receive any compensation for this post. I just really like the products.

01st Aug2010

I Heart Coffee and Planet Mom Tees

by Daenel

Look who’s on the homepage for Planet Mom Tees!!!!!

Planet Mom Tees

And the tweet to go with it…

Tweet from Planet Mom Tees

Is that not the coolest thing ever?! LOL  Now I feel like a celebrity. Blush

Thank you to my friend, Mylynka, for letting me know…

31st Jul2010

Day 13: Shopping! And Blogging

by Daenel

Problogger ChallengeToday I went to Barnes and Noble to pick up a book called Eat, Pray, Love for my NEPA Chick Lit Book Group (there will be a review when I’m finished reading it, which proves Nolie’s point that every experience can lead to a post).  And while I was there, I decided to do a bit of people watching and marketing homework per today’s assignment for the SITS Problogger Challenge.  Actually, the assignment was to go to the mall but, um, yeah, I hate our mall.  It’s incredibly small and not my idea of a good time but Barnes and Noble…  Oh my gosh, every time I walk in there, it’s like the mother ship has called me home.  Truth be told, I feel that way about Pier 1 too.

The first thing I noticed when I walked into Barnes and Noble was that all of the new books and best sellers are right up front, so you can’t miss them as you enter the store.  Hmmmm….in thinking about my blog, my newest post is the one that pops up first when you first access my blog.  However, I like how some bloggers have their blogs set up like store fronts.  For example, when you go to Jennifer’s blog, Eighty MPH Mom, the first thing you see is a rotating “featured content” section that highlights not just her newest content but giveaways that she’s hosting or other posts she might feel to be important.  This allows the reader to pick what they want to read or follow Jennifer’s guidance and read what she wants thinks is important.  Just like in a store, you don’t think the candy bars are by the cash register by accident, do you?

The next thing I noticed was how people shopped in the bookstore:  women browsed the shelves while men headed directly for whatever they were looking for.  OK, I’m making generalizations here, but you’ve all seen men and women in stores.  We shop differently.  The lesson for blogging is that you have to appeal to the sexes.  Women, for the most part, want to know why you do something and men want to to know how you do something.  I think a good blog provides a nice mix of the two.  Krystal Grant’s Guide to Life offers practical advice for dealing with both the hows and whys of a situation.

Last but not least, there’s the smell of the store.  Barnes and Noble smells like Starbucks.  And lemme tell ya, coffee is probably one of the sweetest smells around and when I figure out how to scent my blog, you will be the first to know.

This post was written as part of the 31 Day Problogger Challenge that is being sponsored by SITS.

29th Jun2010

Shopping in NEPA: the Bare Accessories

by Daenel

People are always asking me about my jewelry, they want to know where I bought it or who made it or if they can get something similar.  I always tell them “Yes!” and then I proceed to tell them exactly where I purchased each piece, how much I paid for it and who they should talk to when they get to the store.  I especially love doing this with small, locally owned businesses ~ when you buy local, you help your community.

Anyway, about a month ago, Miss 16 and I were shopping for accessories for her prom dress when we stumbled across a lovely little store at the Shoppes at Montage in Northeast Pennsylvania (NEPA).  the Bare Accessories is a cute little shop that offers a variety of accessories to fit every budget.  My daughter picked up a bronze clutch that perfectly matched her dress (my daughter shares my eclectic taste) and I fell in love with some floral leather bracelets.  I decided not to purchase the bracelet *gasp* because the shopping trip was not about me, it was about Miss 16.  I just made a mental note to return later in the week to buy it.  Naturally, life got in the way and I never made it back up to the store.  And when I finally did, the bracelets were gone!

I perused the shop since I was already there and found quite a few pieces that caught my eye ~ chunky rings, slouchy handbags, sequined scarves, beaded earrings, etc.  On my way out, I decided to take a chance and ask if they’d be getting anymore of the leather bracelets and was told they would be getting them the following week.  Then Stephanie, one of the co~owners, did something that is almost never done at the big stores (and this is why I heart little shops), she asked for my name and number and told me she’d give me a ring as soon as they arrived.

Sure enough, the following week I received a phone call letting me know the bracelets had arrived!  While picking up my bracelet, I met Michaelene, the owner of the shop.  She is so nice.  If you get a chance, pop in and check out their wares ~ I’m sure you’ll find something you love.

Contact Information:

the Bare Accessories
Shoppes at Montage
2031 Shoppes Blvd.
Moosic, PA 18507
Hrs: Mon ~ Sat 10 AM ~ 9 PM
Sun 12 PM ~ 5 PM

Disclosure:  I did not receive any compensation for this post.  I just really like the products and the owners of the shop.

14th Nov2009

Small Talk Six Places I’m Registered, So Buy Me Something!

by Daenel

Today’s topic is to list six places we’d like to register for Christmas. Well, I decided to go a step further and list the items I’d like too (because I’m helpful like that).

1. Disney 3-Night Bahamian CruiseMy kids are old enough where they’d not only remember this but they’d have so much fun
2. Manolo BlahnikSize 8.5, ’cause those SITC ladies aren’t the only ones who can rock a stiletto
3. Louis Vuitton Luggage – A sista needs some classy luggage to take on her trip
4. Novelty Cashmere SweaterI love cashmere ~ so warm and cozy ~ and this one’s so funky cool
5. Starbucks FranchiseEvery since they closed the one near my house, I have to drive about 15 or 20 minutes for an Espresso Truffle, so not cool
6. Brahmin HandbagLouise Rose in the Pecan color because, well, it’s leatha and it’s soooo pretty
Thank you in advance for the gifts…
If you’d like to join in the fun, go here and leave a link to your post (don’t forget to grab the badge and check out the blogs of your fellow participants). You can find the list of topics right here.
18th Oct2009

Please, Just 16 More Years

by Daenel

Friday afternoon I took Miss 16 shopping for a dress for the Homecoming Dance. Part of me was dreading the day. I thought we’d argue over dresses –

that one’s too short…
it’s too long…
it shows too much cleavage…
it’s a turtleneck!

I’m not a prude but I do expect my girls to dress properly (I have a four finger rule in my house – if the shirt goes four fingers width beyond the collar bone, a tank or cami is worn under the shirt). Instead we walked into the store and immediately our hands went for the same dress.

A beautiful knee length taupe dress with gray net overlay and gold embroidery held up by spaghetti straps. It will be worn with a brown shrug and gold sandals.

Miss 16 tried the dress on and I nearly broke down in tears. My baby is all grown up. All of these memories came flooding back:
* The first time I felt her kick
* The first time she called me “Dada”
* The first time she called me “Mama”
* The time I thought she was missing and it turned out she had climbed into the kitchen cabinet and fallen asleep
* The way she took over the care of her brother and sisters when I was sick from radiation therapy

* The time she lost her mind at 12 and I helped her find it again at 13

All of this stuff just filled me up as I sat there watching my daughter twirl in front of the mirror. I wanted to grab her, hold her and beg the Lord to give me 16 more years of her growing up.


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