Thursday, June 27, 2013


Love our Logo, It should look Navy so need to tweak it a tad.

Last year I thought it would be fun to get a big group to go to a Pumpkin Patch here in Charlotte. Once I picked one I noticed you could rent a tent for several hours and then my wheels just started spinning. I made little gift bags for each kid, rented the tent for two hours and arranged for sandwiches for the adults and bloodies/beer for our sanity. *For the record, Uncrustables were a huge hit for kids AND parents. was a BLAST! I really can't take credit because this specific Pumpkin Patch is freaking awesome. They have a huge sand box, a maze, a fleet of cozy coupes and tons to do besides picking a pumpkin. While we were all boozing and enjoying our kids shrieks of laughter one of the Dad's came over to me and we pay you, there is food and alcohol..and our kids are entertained? Its like a Fraternity for kids!

His comment stuck in my head for months so I called up my party planning extraordinaire friend and said we must meet for drinks. Several bottles of wine later TTZ was born. TTZ stands for Taming the Zoo, You Would Drink Too!

We created this group as an outlet for our friends with kids and for us to have fun events 6 times a year for parents and kids alike. It is also a selfish move on our behalf because we both love planning parties. And let's face it, once weddings and first baby showers are all over...all you really have to look forward to is big birthdays and sprinkles.

Our first event was kind of a test run for us to work the kinks out. It was very casual and at my house. Margaritas for Mom-a blend of Cinco de Mayo and Mother's Day. We didn't charge for this event so we could get a good feel on how much these parties will cost. We haven't decided what we will charge per party but have agreed that this is not a money making venture for us. Maybe one day in the future it will be but for now we just enjoy the process so much we would rather break even!

I want to thank my friend Anna for going in on this with me. We are both so crazy with jobs and kids so we are probably nuts to do this but we enjoy it so much. My friend's husband crashed with us awhile back and he laughed that I was going to have drinks with a friend to plan a party 3 weeks in advance. Yep, that's us! And I also selfishly  use it as practice for taking photographs!
Maybe we will expand TTZ one day but for now it is just a fun excuse to get together with our friends and have a few cocktails! (and cookies!)


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

I Do Drugs

This post is not about the Ecstasy induced awesomeness you experienced at a Widespread Panic show in 2000 with the pouring rain feeling like tears of vodka soothing your soul. (Wasn't me, I swear)
This post is about drugs. Legal drugs. Or as my family calls it..."Better living through Chemistry". This post is long and slightly boring so you can totally just come back tomorrow when I talk about balls.

Let's begin with Pill #1. Birth Control.
Dying. But honestly, all 4 of us own crocs.

I was put on this lovely drug when I was 15. Seriously. I started taking Accutane for my pizza face and it was required at the time. *I blame accutane for all that is wrong with me mentally. And my face never completely cleared up.
I don't mind popping the pill every morning. I take other pills so the chance i miss it is slim to none. When I went off of it back in 2010 to get preggo I thought I could get knocked up immediately. We were lucky that it only took three tries but I still felt naughty tossing that pack in the trash. I've been back on it since F was six months old and am still on it. *Read that* STILL ON IT.
 (2nd baby debate is alive and kicking in our house. Will post about that soon. Me-game on. Husband-Hell no)
Shocked M hasn't made this my alarm.

Pill #2. Zoloft
For the record I am 5 days off Zoloft right now. 

Having some hot flashes and heart palps..but hopefully that will subside.

And Over-Controlling is in full force. Anyone need a list?

I am a little more feisty and I have written 10 lists but other than that I think I'm handling it decently well from a No-wire-hangers kind of woman. No, I don't beat my children. But help you GOD if you buy the wrong kind of milk or don't make the bed. RUN.
I wish I didn't have to take it. I have pretty severe OCD and Anxiety. I will spare you the details but let's just say my quirks are cute. BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH. 
Go with the $'s you moron. OCD doesn't care about Gallons.

Sometimes I do wish I could dial down the crazy but then I wouldn't be who I am. My family loves to joke about it, but they all come running when they need an itinerary. And if you have ever met my Aunt Kathleen, she can plan a party and decorate a house like Martha on blow so I embrace my tendencies. I just wish I could control the emotions that come along with it.
I've quit my zoloft (I tapered like a good girl) just in case I can win the Baby #2 debate. I didn't take it while preggo the first time but I think it was easier then b/c we were so excited and come on...Nursery planning? Showers and more showers! This time I can't promise that I won't berate M for not getting an extra side of chipotle mayo with my Sierra Turkey. 
When someone is telling me a story and they take too freaking long. Or pause too much. Or get hung up remembering the details.

Yep. And again before entering the store if it reaches.

Pill #3. Protonix/Aciphex
Think....Aciphex, sound it out. Ass Effects. Nice job pharma companies. I was a freshman in High School when I started having stomach issues. First they thought it was Dysphagia, but eventually they figured out it was GERD
After years of trying Zantac I was put on Aciphex in College. BEST. DRUG. EVER. Except most insurance companies wouldn't cover it. When I lived in Florida and had a personal Blue Cross plan my "reflux issues" were a pre-existing Aciphex cost me $180. These are also the asshole doctors that ordered a zillion tests and tried to say it could be early colon cancer. **Sidebar** At my friend Bryn's wedding in Richmond I told my friend Drew all my stomach pills were ritalin. He chowed them. He didn't shit for a month .
So back to A$iphex. I begged my Dr's in FL for samples b/c it was just too much. Looking back I probably should have sucked it up and payed it. Even the year we were getting married it was just so expensive. The night of our rehearsal dinner I was so nauseous...everyone thought it was cold feet but it was really all the amazing rich food I had already chowed down on that week. I even tried taking D-limonene (orange peel pills)....didn't work.
I would still be on Aciphex today but once I stopped breastfeeding I got super sick. They had no idea what was wrong with me. I dropped 10 pounds and was so nauseous again. And a stressball. We had just dealt with some legal issues and I honestly think the happy breastfeeding hormones drained out of me and I was off all my drugs and just flipped out. They put me on double Zoloft and Protonix immediately and I leveled out. 
I tried to quit Protonix last week so I could be entirely pill free if we started procreating again but I couldn't do it. I pretty much felt like I was hungover ALL DAY. I discovered it was safe to take while preggo so I'm going to stay on it. My friend Aubrey pointed out I probably should stop eating Gluten and I guarantee you she is right. All the side effects of gluten and everything I have read make it seem like the culprit....but I just can't. I hate salads, I would rather wipe my ass with kale than eat it...and I just don't think I can make that lifestyle change. And no, I'm not the little engine that could. I'm the little engine that loves meat and potatoes and taco bell and everything that is bad for you.

So...........there we are folks. I'm curious if you have comments. Sorry this post was so long-winded but it is really the only way to explain to my hippie friends why I love drugs. 

Day 6 with no Zoloft....Let's do this shit! (In an organized/frugal/alphabetized/classy manner)

Crazy Kat
Sooo true.

The Door handle that turns off lights, oven...etc. BRILLIANT.

I know Natalie agrees!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Fresh Market Fanatic

Having a Fresh Market across the street is both wonderful and the devil. Wonderful because I can grab three items and have fabulous hors d'oeuvres without breaking a sweat and the devil because their dessert case is to die for. 

Here are my favorite things to snatch up at Fresh Market

Flowers. Harris Teeter's flower section is abysmal. A Dozen for $10 at FM? Yes please. I prefer to go to the Yorkmont Farmer's Market..but when the flower season doesn't agree with my party planning I run across the street to FM.

 Step 1 for great these French Rounds.

Step 2: Buy this Pimiento Cheese. This was my fave until Palmetto Cheese came out. I love them both but *ALWAYS* buy the jalapeno version.

Step 3: Buy this Bruschetta. Its in a funky spot with prepackaged wraps and sandwiches. I LOVE LOVE this kind and spread on the toast rounds. Put all 3 on a tray and voila!

Need an awesome sandwich? The Turkey & Swiss Panini is delicious. Get it toasted and cut in half. 

 Love their Rotisserie Chicken Salad. Sam's has a pretty good one too. Fabulous on croissants or just by itself.

 My weakness. Haven't had these in ages. Dang beach diet.

I used to work for a software company across the street from FM. The guys I worked with would always buy these damn cookies and bring them into work. Soooo good. But they would always yell at me, stop taking little pieces, just take the damn cookie! I rationalized that if I ate 1/4 every hour I wasn't really eating a whole cookie. Girl Logic.

Are you a Fresh Market addict? I know it is expensive but definitely worth a treat!


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Father and Son Bathing Suits-Tom & Teddy

I has taken quite an amount of pleading to get M in a printed bathing suit. He prefers your old standard solid color suits and I guess there is nothing wrong with those but I just LOVE a fun summer suit. 

Unfortunately for M I also love when Dads and sons wear the same suit. Here is my brother and nephew...the suits were my gift to them for Christmas several years ago. Freaking adorable right?!

They live in West Palm Beach so Lilly is an all year round staple!

Vineyard Vines Stripe Stretch Board Shorts (I prefer men in trunks a tad shorter but M likes these)

But other than the crazy expensive Vilebrequin (LOVE these) But $$$$$$250

what is a good site for Men's suits? 
I bring you Tom & Teddy!
See?! How cute is it when Dad and Son match?

Dad-Salmon $84.95
Kids-Salmon $49.95

Or throw in a solid to mix it up. This will be you soon McMillan family! 
Kid-Rosebloom $44.95

Precious right? This is probably my favorite print.
Dad-Blue Green Fish $84.95
Kid-Blue Green Fish $49.95

And if your hubby isn't into BADASS printed can go with the standard solid trunks!
Boys Tomato - $44.95

Dad Tomato $79.95

I'm in the process of trying to convince M that he and the 2 boys need these this summer!


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Wednesday Pinday-Let's talk Hair

Great side bangs....and LEGS. Yowza
**Warning, this post has lots of pictures of me. Sorry! Had to show you guys what I'm working with. All images from the wonderful world of Pinterest.

My inspiration this fall...also killer side bangs. And waves. And personality. 

Hair over Christmas...see, I'm totally twins with Emma

So last fall I went with the red. I loved it in the beginning but the red would fade so fast and each time I went back it got darker red. The lighter red only happened b/c I still had highlights from the summer and once several shades of red were in there along with my highlights fading it was just too dark for my complexion.

The day after my birthday I went in to my favorite hairdresser (who I have used for 5+ years) and we put brown back in (WAY too dark) and added some blonde highlights. ****supposed to be light brown/dark blonde highlights**

And then...disaster...

The black towel she used to dry my hair after washing was covered in WHITE HAIR. TONS of it. Like bleach blonde hair in huge chunks. My  hair had broken off from too much color. I died a little. And I didn't say a word and neither did she.
This was post-bleach apocalypse. I put on a brave face.

 I went to a hairdresser I had seen years ago in Asheville to get some advice on what to do and she saw the breakage and wouldn't touch it with color...this was Easter weekend. She did put a toner on it to calm down that white but said to wait 6 weeks....
Finally started to lighten a tad...but still way too dark.

6 weeks later I got my hair colored by a great fabulous new hairdresser. My hair is on the mend and she is being super careful with it and I'm due for a trip tomorrow. I haven't had a cut since March so of course I'm contemplating the summertime chop....decisions....

This happens to be my husband's and BFF's favorite hairstyle of mine. Honestly I think it was the water or the air in France. I've never been able to make my hair look like that again.

France hair.

So what should I do tomorrow????
GREAT long Bob and side bangs. My friend AS did this and she looks amazing. Sooo tempting!

Badass side bangs. Love her. 

And as soon as I cut my hair I will see a picture like this and say Noooooooooooooooooooo. Still have not figured out how to do these curls. Abby or Erin....please come teach me.

Cute hair length. 

Good long side bangs. She always looks like she is thinking about sex. During Rush one of our descriptive words for a possible pledge was "over-sexed". Remember that girls? We used it quite often.

LOVE her side bangs...but mine would probably curl up without product. Also love her. Can we be friends?

Badass long side bangs. 

Of course I had to do a Jennifer Aniston post. Remember her short hair from Friends? And she hated it?? I kind of loved it.

So what do you think? Chop? Side bangs? Leave alone and wear like this...
Too Pleasantville?