Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Remembering And Resilience

Style Shout Out to remembering and resilience...

It's been awhile since I've written...and the reasons why, including a big move, are a story for another day.

As for today I am sitting down with a cup of coffee and I am simply thinking...thinking about my family, my friends, and the city where I was born. You see there is something about this day that always makes me reflect.  I remember sitting in my family room in Dallas watching the story unfold in New York so many years ago and feeling so helpless.  I remember the loss and I think about how this loss has made us, as a nation, stronger.  I also remember the hope...the strength...the resilience.

I've always used this day as a teachable moment for Claire.  We talk about how it's important to understand that tomorrow is always a new day...that a positive attitude is everything...that it's not so much about how many times we get knocked down...but how many times we get back up...and how we get back up.

As I watched Claire walk into her new school this morning with a smile on her face and a spring in her step I smiled too...because in her smile I see hope and resilience and the knowledge that every day can be a better day!


My post from September 11, 2011...

Sunday Shorts - Hope & Remembrance

Via the 9/11
Style Shout Out to September 11th and those who will always be remembered.

As I was driving home from the market this afternoon I passed our local fire department. Sitting out front by the curb there was a single pair of firefighter's boots with an American flag.  It is a picture that will stay in my memory just like the pictures of what happened on the morning of September 11th 2001.

I will always remember the heroes on that day and their acts of bravery and kindness.

I will always remember that as a country we are strong.

As a native New Yorker I will always remember that although the landscape of my city may have changed, the hearts of those who have ever called New York home only grew stronger and more resilient on that day.

And I will always remember that even when it seems darkest there is always a better day right around the corner.

My Style Shout Out Tip:   An 8 year old wrote and recorded this song recently and as it reminds me about standing up and having hope I thought I would share it with you today.    A Better Day

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother's Day...It's All Good!

Happy Mother's Day...

Style Shout Out to Mom's everywhere on Mother's Day!

I love Mother's Day...because I really love being a Mom.   I remember the exact minute that I found out I was pregnant and I have enjoyed every Mom minute since that moment!  

As I was making a cup of coffee of this morning I started thinking about last Mother's Day and how much has happened for Claire since we bought her that Taylor Guitar GS Mini.  She has played at the House Of Blues on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood twice, performed at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, written and released her first EP before her 10th birthday, appeared on Good Morning Texas and Daybreak, been invited to NAAM by Taylor Guitars, and is in her second year as a featured performer at the House Of Blues in Dallas.  

As a Mom my biggest wish has always been for Claire to be happy and healthy, to understand that what goes around really does come around, and to find something that she loves to do.  I honestly never thought that she would find that something at such a young age and it makes me smile to think of how much fun she is having with music right now.   I also love the fact that she realizes at such a young age how music is a great way to give back.  Claire said that she's had so many fun experiences but playing for the kids at Children's Medical Center last March was one of the most awesome and I have to admit that watching her play at Seacrest Studios and chatting with the kids afterwards is a moment in time that I will always cherish.  

So today, and every day, I am thankful for my Mom and my daughter.  My Mom has always been a fabulous role model and I've learned from her what it means to be a great Mom.  And I am thankful for my daughter who makes me smile and laugh every day!

I hope that my Mom, my sisters, my Mother-In-Law, sisters-in-law, and all Moms have a wonderful day. 

And thank you Claire for my cookbook..."It's All Good"...and for writing me the most beautiful song!  I am looking forward to trying some of those recipes with you while listening to some really fun music!  


Taylor Guitars...Like Mother, Like Daughter  (Mother's Day 2012)

Taylor Guitars From Guitar Center
Style Shout Out to Taylor Guitars for making a mini guitar with all of the quality that you find in their standard size guitars.

I hope that all of you Mom's had a wonderful Mother's Day.  For me it was a great day because I celebrated at brunch with my family and afterwards my husband, daughter and I stopped at Guitar Center to pick up a graduation present for a friend.

We barely made it through the doors of the store and my daughter was headed to the acoustic guitar room.   I have to admit that I didn't mind because this is my favorite area of any Guitar Center.  I got my first acoustic guitar when I was ten and even though I have a beautiful Fender Telecaster, I reach for my Taylor everyday!

It wasn't like we were there to buy a new acoustic that day, and my daughter didn't ask us to buy her a new guitar, but as we were looking around she stopped in her tracks and there it was...a Taylor GS Mini.  "It looks kind of like yours, Mom!" The Guitar Center sales associate asked if she'd like to play it and from the first strum of the strings and the look on her face as she happily played Cobie Caillat's "Brighter Than The Sun"... I knew we may have come into Guitar Center for one present, but we would be leaving Guitar Center with two.

My daughter did say that it was Mother's Day and so she shouldn't be the one getting a present.  But this was a wonderful teachable moment as I explained to my nine year old that as a Mom, the joy really is in the giving of a gift, and as much as I loved my Mother's Day gifts, the best gift was the smile on her face when we told her we were buying her that Taylor.

That GS Mini has been played so much this week!  I am amazed that Taylor has found a way to make a smaller size guitar with all of the quality and tone of their standard guitars.  It was funny because my daughter looked at me and said, "I'm not surprised about the's a Taylor!"

She'll be playing that Taylor at the House Of Blues this week and I'll be watching and smiling.

My Style Shout Out Tip:  Summer is rapidly approaching and this is a great time to give your children the gift of music.  My nine year old started piano lessons two Summers ago and I have to say that I am still a little bit amazed that two summers later she's playing at the House Of Blues.  Get your kids into a music program and you may be amazed too.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A Team Of LadyBugs

Style Shout Out to LadyBugs!

If you read this blog then you probably know that before Claire started piano lessons at the age of seven we had her try several other activities.  It was important for my husband and I as parents to make sure that Claire had the opportunity to find the things that would make her happy.  We didn't want her to be involved in music because of our love of music...we wanted her to make her own choices!

So along the road which ultimately lead to piano lessons there was kindermusic, ballet, tap, basketball, jazz dance, tennis and golf! Sometimes things just click and that happened for Claire with music but one of the best memories for me has nothing to do with music...surprisingly, it has everything to do with basketball.

You see Claire was fortunate enough to be part of the LadyBug Nation!  She played with this team in Kindergarten and while they didn't win a championship they did win in the fact that they learned about teamwork...friendship...loyalty...

Last night Claire was invited to the farewell LadyBug dinner.  Now that the girls are entering 5th grade they will play in a different league.  I didn't know what to expect from yesterday's dinner because Claire hasn't really seen these girls since Kindergarten.  But it was as if no time had passed as I watched them sitting around a big table eating pizza, telling stories and laughing.

Thank you Coach see it was you as a coach who instilled in this group the importance of team.   You reinforced what we, as parents, model everyday...treating each other how you want to be treated...respect for yourself and others....the importance of teamwork and collaboration...confidence!

And, thanks for inviting all of the LadyBugs to be part of last night's festivities!  Every time I see Claire wearing red I will always be reminded of the LadyBugs and what this team stood for...and that will always bring a smile to my face!

Good luck in your play-off games this weekend!  Go LadyBugs...Go TEAM!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

Claire @ WFAA Good Morning Texas
Style Shout Out to the New Year!

2012 was quite an amazing year...I watched as my now ten year old daughter set and achieved goals in school and in music which included releasing her first EP with a party at House Of Blues where she utilized the platform as a way to collect toys for WFAA's Santa's Helpers.  I watched her enter double digits not only as a talented young lady who does well in school...but as a young lady who is truly understanding the importance of giving back.  I am amazed by her generosity of spirit which shone through in her initiation of a benefit show for the Red Cross, Santa's Helpers Toy Drive and, via CD sales, donating to St. Jude's and Make-A-Wish...and as I began thinking about my 2013 goals, not resolutions, I realized that it's been two years since I've been writing this blog...that it's been two years since Claire asked me if there was something I wanted to do that I hadn't done yet...and it is because of her keen awareness of others and her one simple yet thoughtful question that this blog was born.

So today I thought I'd share the first story from January 2011 and say a very big thank you to my daughter, and my husband, for inspiring me every day...and to Gwen Stefani who first inspired Claire when she was four years old and continues to inspire her today!

Happy reading and a very Happy New Year!

Where Our Style "Fashionation" Began

Gwen Stefani - InStyle 2010
Today's STYLE SHOUT OUT goes to GWEN STEFANI of L.A.M.B. and No Doubt...

My renewed love affair with fashion began because of my daughter.   From the time she was 3 she took a real interest in her wardrobe and had a strong sense of style.  The funny thing is that while lots of children like to pick out their own outfits, the things she chose always, and still do, work really well together.  And I am not just saying that because I am her Mom. There are pictures to prove it.

Anyway, when she was 4 years old we were shopping at Nordstrom.  In the women's shoe department they were selling Gwen Stefani CD's and her newest video was playing.  As we walked through accessories we noticed the L.A.M.B. handbags by Gwen Stefani.  And while I was purchasing a Chanel Lipgloss my daughter was noticing the bottle of L.A.M.B. perfume being prominently displayed with a picture of Gwen Stefani.  At that moment my daughter looked at me and the make-up artist who was assisting with my purchase and she blurted out with extreme confidence, "Wow I am so going to do that when I get big?"  The make-up artist asked her, "What are you going to do?" And my 4 year old responded, "Be a triple threat like Gwen Stefani...she does music, fashion and perfume...AWESOME!!!"

When we got home that day she began sketching and soon after started asking for piano lessons.

Fast forward 4 years and she still has the pencil in her hand (when she's not doing homework, playing with friends, or practicing keyboard).  You see after playing basketball, tennis and trying a few other activities we realized that our daughter was serious about piano lessons.  We knew she was even more serious when she came home after her third lesson and played "Let It Be" by the Beatles with a big smile on her face.

I don't know if fashion and music will be her career one day but the journey getting there with her is so much fun.  The Style Shout Out blog was born out of our style journey.

My daughter says that to be in fashion you have to have FASHIONATION.  Her definition of her word is "To be fascinated with FASHION while having a great IMAGINATION."

We hope in 2011 you will check in regularly to keep up with our STYLE SHOUT OUTS! And, thanks to Gwen Stefani for the inspiration!!!