Overheard In December


As much as you would have thought I would have gotten out in December, the truth is, I just didn’t. And when I did, well, people weren’t talking. They were scrambling. Impatiently waiting. I still managed to overhear some funny things. One of them being from my two year old (three in February) nephew on Christmas Eve when he unwrapped my gift of a big bag of lollipops I had gotten on sale during an after Halloween sale for $1. I knew my sister would not care and I knew he would be so excited.

This is what he said when he unwrapped them:

Big intake of breath. “Lollipops! Just what I always wanted!”

I aim to please. It is fun to be the aunt.


At a local diner with just my husband and I, I heard the following conversation coming from the booth behind my husband:

“Excuse me. What were the eggs I ordered called?”

“Over easy.”

“Okay. That’s what I thought. Now, can you give me the definition of an over easy egg?”

The waitress appeared startled but quickly rattled off, “it is when the whites are firm but the inside is slightly runny when you break it open.”

“Yes. And is this how you always cook your over easy eggs? Do you think they should be dry in the middle? I just want to know for next time. So I can order an egg that is not dry.”

“Sir, I would be happy to take that plate away and bring you an egg cooked to your liking.”

Snort, “No. No. No. I can see you’re busy. I just wanted to know for next time.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes.” And then the minute the waitress had passed, “You would think for $3, I could get an egg that didn’t taste like toast.”

With no reaction from his wife, he continued. “Seriously. It’s that dry.”

Still no reaction.

“Aw, well, next time, we’ll go to IHOP.”

This is when I turned my listening ears off. I suspect…And this is only a suspicion, his wife all ready had five minutes before.


I heard a wonderful story from a woman at a place I shall not name. My son had just gotten his braces off and she was commenting on his teeth.

She asked him if he wanted to eat an apple. He shyly responded, “no, thank you.” He had eaten a giant breakfast with us earlier in celebration of getting his braces off (funny story to come).

She told him, “the day I got my braces taken off, I walked to my car, and there waiting for me was the sweetest boy holding the shiniest, biggest red apple in his hand.”

Her eyes twinkled and she continued, “he was so sweet. He ended up being the man I married.”

She added, “I knew him for a long time, of course.”

This is where the smart ass that I am added, “Oh, good. He wasn’t just stalking girls in the parking lot at the orthodontist office getting their braces off and luring them with apples.”

Another woman laughed at my “wit.”

She said, “That would be a great way to pick up girls! Just wait at the orthodontist for their braces to come off.”

We both chuckled as we pictured young men stalking shining smiles with gleaming red apples.

Not to diminish the lovely romantic story, I truly did enjoy hearing it. And you could tell that even after all these years, she was still madly in love. Maybe an apple a day keeps…the attorney away? ; )


My friend overheard the following conversation at the discount store. It took place between a mother and her four year old son (who had a darling slight speech impediment).

“What’s your name, honey?”


More urgency.

“Honey! What’s your name?”

The little boy turned to his mother in mortification: “Seiously, Mom? You mean, you fogot my name?”

The mom said aghast, “Johnny! That little girl was asking you your name.” She pointed to a cute little girl a few feet away. “I just wanted you to tell her.”

My friend had a good chuckle over this and so did I. Kids do say the funniest things.


A teenage daughter to her dad at a doctor’s office:

“Dad, that’s not fair.”

The dad responded:

“It’s not supposed to be fair

Do you know what’s at the fair?

Caramel corn and apple pies

And if you are lucky credible rides.”

Yes, credible rides. I wondered if the dad knew he had sort of made an awesome rhyme. I felt sorry for the girl. That dad was so scary intelligent, she would never get away with anything.


We were at the local diner having breakfast (this seems to be a theme) and I overheard the following conversation behind me between a woman in her seventies and a man in his fifties:

“Do you think we should get Gene some shoes for Christmas?”

(Keep in mind, I overheard this on the 27th… Of December).

“I don’t know.

What kind would we get?”

I was thinking of some tennis shoes.”

“Yeah, okay. That sounds good.”


“Just make sure they don’t have velcro.”

“Oh, I know! Gene sure has some velcro issues.”

Velcro issues? Best diagnosis ever. I wish I knew what this was! I am intrigued.


Did you overhear anything good in December? What are your plans for tonight? We always stay home and celebrate in our pajamas. Kathy Griffin and Anderson Cooper anyone?

Can’t wait!

Everybody stay smart and safe out there!

Keepin’ It Real December

December is almost over! It was a whirlwind of activity, procrastination and happiness. I am sad to see it end.

Today is my mom’s birthday. Happy Birthday Mom! I love you!

On to the realness:


A piece of lint on my kitchen floor. I think the signs are pointing towards wanting me to go somewhere. Hmmm. But where?


Pajama Party excerpt:

One of my sweet friends insisted on doing some of my dishes by hand. She handed me the wet dish to dry. I have a confession. I hardly ever (and I mean hardly ever) hand wash my dishes. I actually love to do dishes. Load them into the dishwasher. Put them away. I do it at least once a day. But every item goes into the dishwasher. I couldn’t live without it.

So, I dried them with a paper towel. I almost peed my pants laughing when she told me I was supposed to use a dish towel.

She thought I must not have any dish towels. Then I had to show her I had a collection.

She asked me what I use them for. And I said, “to dry my hands.” What a concept: dish towels be used for dishes. I will have to remember that next year when I hand wash a dish again.

It reminded me of the time I was newly married and my mother-in-law came to my house and was shocked to see me cleaning absolutely everything with just Windex.

Housekeeping has never been my strong suit.

Good thing I chose to be a housewife.


I made chocolate bowls for ice cream one night. How do you think I did?



Outfit outtakes.


My dresser in December. Now my whole bedroom looks like this. It was a casualty of Christmas. I hope it can be revived.



Look at what my mom and stepdad gifted me for Christmas on Saturday (we celebrated late with them). It is a necklace I have been wanting for over a year. It is from Knit Knit on Etsy. It is a hand embroidered fox wearing a bow tie!

Thank you guys! I love it!


How was your December? Are you ready for 2014? Or do you feel like I do above (and, yes, that is a giant pimple.)?

Christmas in Clothes


So, The Nutcracker? Yeah. Call me an uneducated ditzy fool, but ??? I guess I was completely oblivious to the fact that ballets have NO TALKING in them!!!

“Hi. I’m Jenni. I can’t sit through two hours of nobody talking.”

I am a three year old.

This is payback for all of those times my children would not stop talking and we would play the “silent game.”

Those ballerinas were all, “Silent game this!”

Only without actually saying that.

Okay. Okay. It wasn’t completely silent. There was a live orchestra which was fabulous. I love an orchestra. I took my son down to the pit to watch them set up. That was my favorite part. And his, too.

I have taken my children to musicals all of their lives. I guess I just was not prepared for the ballet. This is odd, because my mother has been dancing since she was a child. Pointe and everything. Heck, I even took consistent classes for eight years (don’t look so shocked). My mother has since moved on to hip hop, but ballet has always been a part of my life. Of course, I had not gone to see it since I was a little girl.

There were parts of it that were incredible. So gorgeous and pretty. Truly breathtaking. It is amazing what some talented people can do with their bodies.

But in the future I will know.

I am too immature to go.


And yes, I am a total fraud in my ballerina dress (also worn here).

Silently sobbing.


This was what I was going to wear to the ballet.


I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that almost every single person was dressed up for the ballet. This is such a big difference from going to a play on Broadway, where only half of the people are in evening attire. This was my other favorite thing about the ballet. The ambience and the outfits.

Only I did not wear this to the ballet.

I wore this on Christmas Eve to host my family. Except, I was cooking all day, and I forgot to take my apron off until after dinner! So, apron + boots = disheveled crazy. Kind of like this post.

The skirt is my Emeline Skirt formerly worn here. And the top is my Peony Applique Pullover, previously worn here.


Let’s sidestep chasse’ away from the hot topic of ballet and move into a topic I am much more comfortable with.


And dressing like them.


I do not know why, but this outfit does remind me a bit of the little fellows. Perhaps it is the cheerful colors. Perhaps it is because I am surrounded by gnomes. Perhaps it is because I had just seen The Nutcracker the night before and I was delirious.

I paired my Anthropologie Threaded Tides Dress (purchased for $10) with my red cardigan from many years ago. I remember I first bought this cardigan, because it was called Guinevere and that is one of my favorite names in the world. It is like “Jennifer” (derived from Guinevere) only more pleasant to say in a lilting way.


The belt is a recent clearance purchase from Anthropologie called Layered Corset Belt. The boots are vintage from the flea market. The white sweater tights are from Nordstrom Rack. The earrings are from Modcloth.

What did you wear this week? Have you ever played the silent game? Are you “winning?”*

* Winning this game does not result from one being silent. Winning this game occurs the moment you convince someone else to actually play the game.

Tip: Don’t ever play against a ballerina.

* I shared this on The Pleated Poppy!

A-h-Mazing Edible Serving Trays


So. Hosting. It is something I love to do. Have people over. Entertain.

Make one word sentences.

But, quite often, I spend so much time making the food, that I forget about the serving aspect of it. You know, making the food look good so people will want to eat it. The other night at my pajama party, I actually served my salad in my giant aluminum soup bowl. All of the pretty bowls were trapped in the cabinet in a cluttered pile-up of randomness. I opened the cupboard and saw that the bowl I needed was wedged underneath the trifle-bowl-I-have-never-used-to-make-a-trifle-with-but purchased because it-was-on sale-for-$15-and-Rachael-made-a-trifle-on-“Friends”-and-maybe-one-day-I-would-too. Without beef. Except I haven’t. And probably won’t.

Joey would be so sad.

I looked at that mess and quickly shut the door on it.

I dug out my stockpot, dumped my bag of salad in it and called it a night.

And it was fine.


But I wish I had done something more.

Leading me to this post.

Why did I not come across this before? Well, I can blame thank Ollie. The only reason I found this was because Ollie ate an entire plastic candy cane filled with white chocolate peppermint hershey kisses (not the plastic part) when he climbed into a chair and reached over and grabbed it from the side table. Who knew he was such an acrobat? Seriously, he even left the empty candy cane on the table. I could not believe he could achieve such a feat. I was trying to decide if he needed to go to the vet. Or join the circus.

He ended up being a perfectly fine dog without any other death-defying talents. But I came across an idea while searching for his agent cure.

Jenni, Jenni, Jenni, get a hold of yourself. What idea?


Here it is.

Candy serving trays. Yes. Candy serving trays!



Have you ever heard of anything so wonderful? I used mine for all of my small serving bowls during Christmas Eve dinner.

I found the idea on the blog Tutto Bella.


You just line a baking sheet with parchment paper. And arrange your candy into a simple pattern.



My daughter did this one.



This is my son’s.


And this small sad affair is mine.


Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes. I did eight minutes and twenty seconds. ; )


Remove from the oven. Let cool one to two minutes. Trim any unevenness carefully with a pizza cutter. This will still be extremely hot. Be careful! Don’t touch it with your bare hands. Let cool completely. Voila!

I think doing this with butterscotch candies or other thin hard candies during the year would be very cool, too. I might try it for a birthday party.

Had you heard of this before? Have you ever seen anything so simple? And cool? I am in love with this project. I wonder if I could create a stockpot for next year’s salad. That sounds just about as good as a beef trifle.

I am sure Joey Ollie would agree.

* I shared this on Savvy Southern Style.

And My Romantic Home.