Summertime, Summertime…

27 May


Memorial Day Weekend!  One of my very favorite weekend’s of the year!  Each and every Memorial Day weekend, I know I’m about to embark on the Best. Summer. Ever!  I’m including some items to help launch all of us, into the BSE.

summer 111

Life gets better.  Making this the best summer ever!



Remember the ones you love and make them a priority…:)



Puzzle nights, Family Fondue Night, Night Games, Neighbor BBQ are all on my/our list!  We will be adding to this list as well!



Throw in some Garrett’s Popcorn… and, well, there you have it!


I’m going to make a goal of having one of each of these S’Mores.


I will take one of each please. And let’s throw a Stella or two, to be enjoyed on the deck.  Cheers!


After Portillos; Lou Malnatis and Buona Beef, the S’Mores and the beach cocktails…You’ll need to do this.


It’s good to have a book list!  I plan to read at least 10 books this summer.  My summer reading bucket list.

Song of the Day: Only Time will Tell, by Asia

I see it now becomes so clear
Your insincerity
And me all starry eyed
You think that I would have known by now
Now sure as the sun will cross the sky
This lie is over
Lost like the tears that used to tide
Me over

I’ve had a great week.  A happy, fruitful, productive and enjoyable week!   I’m looking forward to a happy, fruitful, productive and enjoyable summer.  Best. Summer. Ever.  And may we all be as happy as the Chewbacca Mom!  On any day of the week, I will take Chewbacca Mom over anything Kardashian…and I’m guessing most are with me on this one!

If you watch this and you don’t smile and laugh, there is no hope for you!


IMG_0206Beaches now open!

Have a happy and safe Memorial Day!



Check out India Hicks…my new obsession:

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yay summer




Great Style…

20 May


Great style means not trying too hard. In other words…Effortless… and in my extremely busy and hectic week (all good), I realized that the problems I was experiencing on this blog, were not going to fix themselves, so today’s blog will be a brief one, so I can work on righting the wrong that has occurred in my hopper of almost 200 posts.

This little saying, Great style means “not trying too hard”, did come across my desk this week.  Totally resonated with me, because when you have to try to hard to put together an outfit… you are trying too hard.  Great style, like my lovely daughter, should be (or at least appear), Effortless.:)

Meredith blog photo

“Effortless”… but she pretty much looks like this all the time.  Every darn day.  Try living with this.:)  My sweet Meredith.


Style is forever.

Don't underestimate the seductive power of a decent vocabulary.

Don’t underestimate the seductive power of a decent vocabulary.

You lost me at your poor use of grammar.


I will take great style over trendy fashion any day.  I shall put that on a cocktail napkin, which seems to be the only way I can remember things lately.

Song of the Day:  Can’t Stop the Feeling, by Justin Timberlake.  Because, it is the “song of the summer” and this weekend it certainly is going to feel like summer!

How can you not love a song that talks about sunshine in your pocket?  You can’t not love this song!

I got that sunshine in my pocket
Got that good soul in my feet
I feel that hot blood in my body when it drops, ooh
I can’t take my eyes up off it, moving so phenomenally
Room on lock the way we rock it, so don’t stop

I had an absolutely wonderful reunion with some people who I started with in the hotel business.  A couple of them I hadn’t seen since 1990, after I left the hotel to get married.  They were all at the wedding.  One was even an usher.  The only downfall is we didn’t take a group picture.  However, there was laughter, tears, reminiscing, jotting down names of people to google, a few libations (for most of us)…Truly doesn’t get better than that.  Except these few highlights.

  1.  I know my friend Karrie always called me “Skippy”.  She did because Kevin used to call me that, because I was happy-go-lucky and he’d say I’d “skip” around the office.  There are worst things to be called, stop the eye-rolling.   Anyway, much to my surprise (HORROR), I realized that in our little group, they All referred to me as that.  Behind my back.  26 years later.  Skippy.
  2. Nothing makes a woman happier than people saying, “You look the same as you did in 1990…and you haven’t aged a bit”.  Best. Night. Ever.
  3. Imagine my delight when my friend Marc tells me I was always his “favorite”.:)
  4. Imagine my greater delight when my friend Karrie says, “you left and that’s the last time that hotel ever had any corporate business”. #Zing
  5. When Debbie explains my dry sense of humor…and when I said, “she should have used conditioner” (in what context I shall not explain, but yes will tell you Megan and Tracy), I was just kidding!  For 26 years Rosa didn’t realize it was a joke.  She now understands I am super, super funny!:)
  6. The piece de resistance…Maybe…just maybe, Rose is now #TeamTerry


Life is truly coming full circle, when my Effortless and Stylish daughter, takes me out and treats me to a manicure.  Best. Daughter. Ever.

Mer and Me 2

Ritz Carlton Lake Tahoe – 2010.

Have a fabulous weekend!



Check out my new venture:


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2016 is the year of me!


Imitation is the most sincerest form of flattery.

Since we last met…

13 May


Since we last met… I have had a fun filled week!

  1.  Opening Day at Arlington Race Track with my #1 Gal – we didn’t win a lot of money…but my beverage did match my dress.  #Winning




2.  I had an absolutely Fantastic Mother’s Day!  Even without my #1 son…my sweet Mer Mer gave me an awesome day!



These cupcakes are from Small Cakes bakery in South Barrington.  Best cupcakes I’ve ever had.

Day started off with a Mimosa Bar!  Followed by cupcakes and omelettes for breakfast.  A visit at the Blow Dry Bar and dinner at Ruth’s Chris.  Doesn’t get better than that!  Oh, and some of the cutest gifts ever.  Necklace with the charm of a pair of sunglasses and the most Fabulous purse…

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Paws off!


Even Maxie is digging my new Patrick Kane Blackhawks jersey!  That’s me with my blowout, with curls enhanced by me.

3.  Went to an absolutely Fabulous wedding…and clocked in at 17,000 steps!  Dancing the night away!


Funniest part of this picture, is Linda, who is so short, cuts herself out of the selfie, because her arms are even shorter than her legs!


Handing out with the MOB, D… and what is that guy looking at?! For crying out loud!

4.  My favorite trees were in full bloom!


5.  My favorite trees shed their blooms and made for a fabulous entryway to my home.


Oh and just found out that in one of those trees next to the front door, is a small bird’s nest…with about 6 baby bird eggs.  Should make for a fun time coming and going.  I mean, I only come in and out of that front door, say about 17 times a day.  Can’t wait for the birds to start dive-bombing my head!  Will Not make for the best day ever!

6.  My two girls are matching with cheetah accessories and the lovely bloom-strewn walkway.

cheetah girls


7.  Getting ready for the arrival of my college boy, home for the Summer!  As we all seem to say (but I was first)…And just like that… freshman year is over!


Day one… Happy boy, very sad Mom, not shown in this pic.   That’s the last time that room looked that good, btw.  :)



Day 20…one of my favorites…when you son’s shirt matches the sky!



Day 40…Looks like Patrick and Mary have settled in very well!  This may have been day 20?


Moms weekend

Day 240…Happy boy, happy Mom, happy girlfriend…drinking the Kool-aid at Miami!


Day 285: Coming home to the Best. City. Ever!  Cannot wait.  Summer vacation 2016!


Mary posted an Instagram video of her first year at Miami, and the song made me cry… And because I loved that song, and that girl, it will be today’s :

Song of the Day: Youth by Troye Sivan:

My youth, my youth is yours
Trippin’ on skies, sippin’ waterfalls
My youth, my youth is yours
Runaway now and forevermore
My youth, my youth is yours
A truth so loud you can’t ignore
My youth, my youth, my youth
My youth is yours

Today me and 2 of my favorites are working ALS Tag Days in downtown Barrington.  I will be “working” the corner of 59/Main street from 11A – 1P.   Please help Ice out ALS and make a donation!  #BarringtonTagDays  #IceOutALS

Coming soon to a blog near you:  6th version of my Favorite Things (this time I mean it); Another 30-Day challenge… because I still don’t have rock hard abs; Summer fashion trends! and whatever else tickles my fancy!

Today is Friday the 13th.  Don’t let that scare you!  Have a Fantastic weekend!




And she sits.


Mer has learned this little trick.  :)




I’m not bossy…



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This is a funny and witty blog!





Get a Room… and May I Recommend Room 750 at the St. Regis Monarch Beach

6 May

beach 3


A funny thing happened on the way to planning Spring Break 2016… While we usually stay at the same hotel year after year, a family vote indicated none of us wanted to return there, so we had a dilemma.  Where to stay? We already had tickets flying into Orange County, CA…because I am a creature of habit, once I get to know a place, I tend to always return.   I like to go places where I know how to get around, especially in and out of an airport and where not everyone will know my name.  We like to fly under the radar.  So, we knew we were going to Orange County, as we already had our airline tickets, but needed to figure out where we were going to stay.  After Much deliberation (actually not much at all) the kids and I decided to stay at the St. Regis Monarch Beach in Dana Point, CA.  Something to mention, all the pools at the hotel were going to be under renovation, but they had a private beach, so we were going to have to make do with that.  We were going to take one for the team!


The resort looked just like this… except, no pools!  But just like this.:)

We’ve been home about 6 weeks since spring break and I wasn’t going to blog about this trip or this hotel.  Yes I do tend to blog and mention things in my life, however there is quite a bit about my life that will never be mentioned in this blog, on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or the Wall Street Journal.  Room 750 was going to fall under that category.  But after noodling this over, I do feel that the kindness and generosity extended to my family, deserves a nice little shout out.  Or since I was just called”a celebrity blogger” :)…I can blog about it!  For the record I am about the farthest thing from a “celebrity blogger”.

St. Regis

Because of the kindness of a very, very dear friend, @LSULeslie and her partner in crime, Kate, with the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort, unbeknownst to us, we had some very special accommodations waiting for us upon our arrival.  I need to mention I had absolutely No idea that these fabulous ladies had been working behind the scenes planning our arrival.  It appears we were not going to be able to fly under the radar.  And what they had planned was much more than just a special room.  Suite is a better word…Or how about The Presidential Suite at the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort, complete with our own Butler?  Room 750!  Two bedrooms, powder room, full bathroom for the kid’s room, living room, dining room, kitchen, master bedroom with sitting area and a master bath to top all master baths!  A great bar set up, fabulous sound system, our own facsimile machine (:) ), about 40 towels per person, and that’s just to mention a few of my favorite things about Room 750.  I must have said this 100 times that week, but I could totally live in that room…I mean suite.  Of course, it goes for $8000/night and it’s 3000 sq. ft.  Of course I could live there. Kate Middleton would be happy there.  And we were there for a week. We paid for a regular room, booked as regular guests, asked for no special treatment or courtesies, but because of these 2 very special ladies, and the kindness of a few others, we received an “upgrade” to beat all other upgrades!


Cheers to Leslie and Cheers to Kate!

Here are a few pictures from Room 750, the Presidential Suite at the St. Regis Monarch Beach… otherwise known as my Happy Place!  3000 sq. ft of Happy!

room with a view

Room with a view, or a Presidential Suite with a view.


Our very own terrace… and this is only part of it!


This is the other part of it.



Our living room…and the fireplace doubled as a dance stage!  We did not take this photo.


Powder room


Kids room with their own private balcony, which also had a beautiful view of the ocean.


Kid’s bathroom…. and not lacking on towels!


Dining room, with our lovely amenity basket and a bottle of Sonoma Cutrer Chardonnay!


Kitchen… chock full of enough plates, cups, glasses and serving pieces to accommodate 40 guests.  We had 3 guests one evening and 1 another.  That is all…


Cutest little bar… stocked bar. Cheers!



Master bedroom, with balcony access, sitting area and fireplace.  Oh that’s right…. Access to the balcony from 2 doors!


One of the showers in the master bath.


The second shower, because every master bath needs 2 separate showers, with duo shower heads in each.  And one being a steam shower.


The lovely double vanity with the best hotel bathroom amenities I have ever used!


Our private beach which we would take our own beach shuttle to and from every day.  A girl could get used to this!


Our morning French-Press Coffee, with fresh squeezed orange juice, pastries and fresh fruit, brought to us by our own Butler.  Yes, our own Butler.  Actually a Butleress, Giuliana.  And this lovely little spread was sent to us every day, complimentary!



Yes, we would leave the comfort of our room… every now and then!  The bartender at the beach club, who was used to seeing us in our bathing suits with no make-up, saw Mer and said, “Look at you with the lippy lip”.  Lippy lip.  :)

Speaking of that bartender, when he got to know us (we may have been partaking in a few adult beverages) and asked for our room number (for billing purposes only) and I said, 750, he did a double take and asked,

“Isn’t that the Presidential Suite”.


He said, “Makes for a nice weekend”.

We said, “we are here all week”.

He replied, “Nice”!

Yup, nice it was!  We shall file that away under “Understatement”.  Truly, everything about this resort was Fantastic.  The food, beverages, dirty martini, service, amenities, pillows, towels…absolutely everything was perfect.  Admittedly, the resort was under renovation, but the hotel didn’t miss a step.  5-Star accommodations and service every single day.



Let me give a quick shout out to Javier’s in Newport Beach, which has always been one of my favorites.  I’m mentioning them in this blog because they feature Cakebread Chardonnay (in my Top 3 of Chardonnays) on their menu and it was only $52/bottle.  It was like they were paying Us to drink it.  It can be $49 in the liquor store and for a restaurant to serve if for $52/bottle…meant we were getting 2 bottles!  #ThriftyDrinkers


World’s prettiest sunset!


Because the final picture taken in our suite, had to be with us in our bathrobes… Paddy cheated and put it on over his clothes.  Mer and I did not!  This is the picture of 3 very happy people!


Then this happened…:(  Truly as I was penning this blog, I received an email, though I already knew of the transition.  My beloved St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort was going to be managed by KSL Resorts, so a St. Regis it would no longer be.  I believe this had been in the works during our stay, which is why the Presidential Suite was available for us for an entire week.  They say timing is everything…and may I say, we had the Time of our lives!

Someone asked how do we even begin to thank someone for doing something so special for us?  Well…let’s just say a pair of Kendra Scott earrings (my new obsession) and a fabulous Palm Tree clutch!  At least I think it’s fabulous.  Different color schemes for each of course. Oh… and a 6.5-Gallon of Garrett’s Popcorn, the  Chicago Blend of caramel corn and cheesy corn, sent to the GM who helped make sure all these plans would fall into place and we weren’t kicked out when we decided to extend our stay. We realize this was a once in a lifetime courtesy and the stars had to align for all of this to fall into place and we are so happy and grateful that everything worked to give us the best week of our lives!






My very favorite quote about our temporary living arrangements:   “I cannot even be jealous of you guys.  I’m really happy for you”. We are too.:)

Song of the Day:  Cake by the Ocean, by DNCE, because this brings back happy memories of our trip.  Not because of the raunchy lyrics of this song (I mean, really), but because we heard it every where we went!

Waste time with a masterpiece, don’t waste time with a masterpiece (huh!)
You should be rolling with me, you should be rolling with me (ah)
You’re a real life fantasy, you’re a real life fantasy (huh!)
But you’re moving so carefully; let’s start living dangerously


Since I’ve last blogged…really blogged, Patrick came home for the weekend and we went to the greatest NHL game, ever!  Hawks won 6-3, which means we got to sing and twirl our towels to Chelsea Dagger, 6 times!  Sadly the Hawks lost the series, but we had a fantastic time!  Yes, I’m wearing a Blackhawks jersey.  When at the United Center…


And I went to the NFL Draft, actually Draft Town.  Never met a draft I didn’t like. (TOB).






A LAP and an NKO siting!  Perfect party planners and keeper of the picnic table!  Cheers to these fine ladies!




Yes, I’m aware this weekend is the Kentucky Derby, so if you want to hone up on Derby life, please read last year’s blog,

A horse walked into a bar.  That line never gets old!

Today Arlington Race Track opens…and this blogger may be attending!  And I have a fun wedding on Saturday.  Not mine, but a fun wedding, nonetheless.  Yes…Best. Weekend. Ever!

T-7 days till Patrick is home for the summer.  Cannot wait!  :):):)

going to miami




Yep…Best. Weekend. Ever!



This… is the story of my life!

you're not rich

True…very, very true.

Today’s Blog…

29 Apr

… is delayed, due to an outstanding time, by this blogger and her friends at the NFL Draft in Chicago!  Chi-town is Draft Town!

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More later,




Calling in sick to a place you don’t work

22 Apr



Because I’m still sad about the passing of Prince, #WhenDovesCry, I thought a fun, zippy post to make people laugh, would be a good way to jump start the weekend.   Prince’s music brings back fond and happy memories of people, times and places.  I will always love his music.  Back to this blog. :)The premise of this video is a young man calls in sick (possibly to a Target), to a place where he does not work.  #Brilliant

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This video is about 3 minutes long.  It’s worth the 3 minutes of your life to get a little laugh.  Those who say, “I’m too busy”, “Gimme a break”, or “I have more time than money and I have no time”… watch the video.  It’s worth it.  It’s funny, clever and full of life lessons. You’re welcome.

I hope you enjoyed it as much as Mer and I.

Song of the Day: Well, since Prince doesn’t allow his music to be played on YouTube, I am unable to link in a Prince song, so I am going to say the Song of the Day, is 1999, one of my favorites, and hoping you have it where you can listen to it.:)

I was dreamin’ when I wrote this, forgive me if it goes astray
But when I woke up this mornin’, could’ve sworn it was judgment day
The sky was all purple, there were people runnin’ everywhere
Tryin’ to run from the destruction, you know I didn’t even care

So excited that my little Prince is home this weekend…not for the summer, but for a quick weekend.  And I will be posting about Mom’s weekend, next week.   Best. Time. Ever.

Moms weekend

We are drinking the Kool-aid at Miami!  #ReallyKoolaid  #WeAreNotOfDrinkingAge



Happy double-digits birthday to my sweet nephew, Joey!  #10!  Have a swinging great time!


Tonight I’m gonna party like it’s 1999!




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Dearly beloved…

21 Apr



“Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to get through this thing called life”. – Prince




Song of the Day:  Prince, Tom Petty, Steve Winwood, Jeff Lynne and others — “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”

I don’t know why nobody told you
How to unfold your love
I don’t know how someone controlled you
They bought and sold you

I look at the world and I notice it’s turning
While my guitar gently weeps
With every mistake we must surely be learning
Still my guitar gently weeps


I. Can’t. Even.


I’m hoping he’s serenading my favorite Prince fan right now.:)

May he rest in peace.





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