Today is Not Black Friday

Today is Thanksgiving and as usual I’m up at 5AM. I didn’t mean to get up this early. I meant to “sleep in” until six. But as unnatural as it seems to wake up when it’s this dark and cold, I did wake up naturally. The pull of the computer and a blog post I had spinning around in my head got me to push my cozy flannel comforter off of myself and get up instead of burrowing in and trying to go back to sleep. That and I may have been having a hot flash. (Not that I would ever admit to that.)

This Thanksgiving I am thankful for the things I am always thankful for. My family most of all of course. Our health. My many wonderful friends who fill my life with laughter. My house and the town that it’s planted in that feels like a modern-day Mayberry to me despite its close proximity to Los Angeles. Wine. (Yeah, you knew that was coming!) I have a job that I like that is only twelve minutes away from my Mayberry house (in a town that is more like Beverly Hills West). I have a good life. We have a good life.

Thanksgiving veggie tray

Our kids are growing up way too fast. Really, if someone wants to become the richest person in the world, what they need to do is figure out how to slow it all down. My son will be graduating high school in a year and a half – his childhood over. I don’t want it to stop, but can’t someone figure out how to make it stop happening at warp speed? It’s so hard to slow down when life moves so fast.

One thing I am truly not thankful for this Thanksgiving is the terrible trend of Black Friday sales taking place today. On Thanksgiving. How is a sale that takes place on Thanksgiving, which if I know how to read a calendar is certainly a Thursday, called Black Friday?!

I find it ironic that we’ve turned this American holiday of giving thanks into a “holiday” of competitive shopping. Forget about being thankful for what you have, go buy more, More, MORE. (And don’t be afraid to push someone out of the way to get it.)

Look, I get that some businesses are open on Thanksgiving. Maybe I’m a hypocrite because I’m quite thankful that my gym is open today (for limited hours – only 6:00 – 1:00) so I can take a 90 minute kickboxing class this morning and don’t have to run.

And I know that movie theaters are open so when families have stuffed themselves fuller than the stuffed turkey they just inhaled they can sit together in a dark comfortable room and watch Katniss Everdeen reluctantly murder her peers instead of hearing Great Aunt June tell everyone about the time she was chosen as the county fair cornfield queen for the 27th time (today). I get it. As a former movie theater employee who had to work on Thanksgiving, I don’t like it, but I get it.

And yes, most markets are open because we all forget things. Celery for stuffing. Milk for the mashed potatoes. Asti Spumante for the uncouth relative who prefers the guilty pleasure of a sweet sparkling wine to a buttery Chardonnay with her turkey. (Who me?) But markets are open to help people with their holidays – not take away from it. And if you want my honest opinion I think markets are open too long. Take a cue from my gym and be open from 6:00 to 1:00 or maybe 8:00 to 3:00. Closing at 7:00 may seem early, but I’m sure it doesn’t seem early for the employees. If you haven’t bought your celery or cheap wine by 3:00 you should be out of luck. Can’t we make things a little bit inconvenient for Americans just a few precious days of the year? Perhaps that will help us to feel even more thankful for just how good we’ve got it.

So tonight I will not be shopping any Black Friday Black Thursday Thanksgiving sales. And look – I’m on a budget. If there’s anyone who needs to save money it’s me. But if you’re planning on shopping tonight, I want you to ask yourself this – who are you shopping for? Yourself or your family? If the answer is your family you might want to think twice about heading out for those sales tonight. Because in ten years they likely won’t remember what they got for Christmas this year, but they’ll certainly remember mom not being around on Thanksgiving after dinner when everyone is relaxing and playing Bananagrams because she had to go wait in line to save 50%. So I propose that this Thanksgiving we all slow down and take a look around at all that we have. The X-Box can wait (and will probably still be there at 5AM tomorrow when the kids are sleeping if you really need it). Slow down. Pull out the Monopoly board. Tell Great Aunt June you bet she was the prettiest county fair cornfield queen there ever was (for the 27th time today). Don’t let retailers steal your holiday. Life is already happening at warp speed.

The Wine Sisterhood Shop is now Open

Last March I won a trip to Napa from Middle Sister Wines for the 2013 Wine Sisterhood Gathering by posting this silly picture of myself on Pinterest.

This may be a crappy photo of me, but it won me a trip to Napa!

It was a wonderful 3-day trip that was full of wine tasting, social media seminars, and ridiculously awesome foodie-food where I met some amazing women that I still keep in contact with. An experience of a lifetime for sure. There was so much packed into that trip I had to write three blog posts to cover it all.

In case you missed them and are curious about the fabulousness of this trip you can read them here:

Part 1…

If I died, this would be my heaven!

Part 2…

Beautiful Chappellet vineyards in Napa Valley

Part 3…

The wonderful Domaine Carneros

One of the things we did on the trip was spend time in the Wine Sisterhood Sassy Suite. What is a Sassy Suite? It was a suite reserved to showcase the Wine Sisterhood wines and fabulous items for sale at the Wine Sisterhood online shop. So, if you are looking for a gift for a wine-loving girlfriend this is definitely the place to go.

So much fabulousness at the Wine Sisterhood Shop

Check out some of the fabulous things they have for sale…

Looking for a place to store all of those wine corks? (You don’t throw them away do you?!)


Need something to help you out on a bad hair day? I have this hat and it sees the soccer field every Saturday morning. (7:30 on a Saturday is waaaay too early to do anything to my hair except put it under a hat!) I can’t tell you how many compliments I’ve gotten on this hat. Oh yeah, when a mom compliments me on this hat I know she’s one of my people!

Bad hair day hat

This needs to be in my wardrobe. Adorable! (Plus, you know, I just happen to have a hat that matches!)

wine hoodie

I brought my friend Jennifer on the trip with me and she bought me a beautiful necklace made from upcycled wine bottles while we were there. The Wine Sisterhood shop sells matching bracelets. (Hmmmm…..)

wine bottle bracelet

Speaking of upcycling, check out these gorgeous candles. LOVE them!

Upcycled Wine bottle Candle

And this necklace? It would look perfect on me when I go back to Stagecoach next year.

Cowgirl Necklace

Need a hostess gift this holiday season? What could be better than a corkscrew that says Wine Sisterhood? I have this corkscrew and love it. It works great! (Trust me, a woman can never have too many corkscrews!)


These coasters for the serious wine taster have a retro look and are so cute…

Wine tasting Coasters

Or maybe some delicious dipping oil. (You can’t go wrong with dipping oil!)

Olive Press Dipping oil

And I love these “I Am” roll on fragrances. I am peace. I am hot. I am blessed. (I have I am naughty!)

naughty fragrance

And this Wine Sisterhood handmade soap? So lovely. I cried when I used my last little sliver. (Definitely time to get some more!)

Wine Sisterhood Soap

I could go on, but I think you get the picture. It’s fairly obvious that this is the BEST place to shop for your wine loving girlfriends. Or wine loving moms. Or wine loving sisters. (Hey, I bet even your kid’s teacher loves wine! God knows that after a day spent in the classroom she sure needs it!)

So stay home from the mall and do all your girlfriend shopping by clicking this link here. And check this out: There is a 20% discount code – holiday20 – and a $5.99 flat rate ground shipping deal now through Dec 31st. Yeah, I know how to hook a girlfriend up. You are so very welcome!

*Disclosure: My links to the Wine Sisterhood Shop are affiliate links meaning if you click on the link and end up buying something I get a (very) small commission. But I live by a high moral code – I wouldn’t pimp this stuff if I didn’t think it was cool.

Shopping for School Clothes with a Teenager

School clothes
Marley’s Instagram of her school clothes haul

I took Marley shopping for school clothes this weekend. I was hoping to score some good deals from Labor Day sales.  There weren’t as many deals as I had hoped. Probably because I’ve found so much joy in shopping at thrift stores and yard sales lately. It’s hard to wrap my head around a $13 Batman tee shirt as a bargain when I recently purchased three skirts, a sweater and a pair of pants for just two dollars more. (My new favorite game to play with myself is to calculate the cost of my outfit in my head…”Wow, this entire outfit only cost $12 including my shoes and purse. I am one hell of a savvy shopper!”) Marley enjoys my thrifty finds (favorite Vans hoodie for only $1.00 – you’re welcome), but does not enjoy thrift store shopping. Or yard sale shopping. Or, truth be told, shopping in general. But I digress… (which is really hard to do in just one paragraph)… shopping with her made me feel old. Like that mother who just doesn’t get it. We do not think the same things are cute. I really never thought I’d be that mother. I remember shopping with my own mother when I was 13 and the importance of having the right clothes. Cute clothes. Clothes that made me stand out in exactly the right way. (Wait, who am I kidding? I still feel that way.) So I bought her (mostly) what she wanted and was thankful that she becomes bored with shopping so quickly and didn’t really want much. I sent Dave a text from Hot Topic, “What’s worse? Dress code questionable clothing or a Black Veil Brides tee shirt?” His response: “Aaaahhhhhhh!” Aaaahhhhhh indeed.