Roundup: Rugstravaganza

Something must be in the internet water today, because all day long I've come across some damn fine rugs. These particular rugs also happen to be super well-priced. Yay! Behold, and enjoy.

Sources: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

PS. Several of these rugs are from One Kings Lane. I don't think you have to join up to see them, but here is the link just in case.


Mini Driver.

Just a few minutes ago, as we were sitting on the patio waiting for our July 4th ribs to cook, this arrived in our driveway.

One had taken the car to be washed, and the other was just along for the ride. You decide which is which.

Stay tuned for some exciting things ahead, lovers. The excitement at our house is over, and now the real work begins.


Sweet Sixteen

Yesterday, our only child turned sixteen. To say I was a little worried about this is like saying, "sharks are kind of bitey," or "a drunk enjoys a beer from time to time." An understatement, if you will. For, you see, the sixteenth birthday comes with another milestone: the drivers license. And along with that comes the terrifying thought that your baby, who up until now has depended on you for so many things, is now free to drive her car to Sonic anytime she wants for jalapeno poppers.

I am here to tell you that we all survived. Madeleine woke up improbably early yesterday morning, and proceeded to spend approximately twenty-seven hours getting ready for her test. This involved much hair straightening, outfit picking, and eye makeup applying. When she was done, we presented her with a gift:

The box included this cute Kate Spade keychain/ID holder, and...

...a key to her new car.

Her new car is my old Honda Accord, which I bought when she was four years old. Y'all, the Japanese build an auto to last. Vince had taken it to get cleaned and detailed, AND installed some sort of fancy audio system inside. Madeleine, who is not a grinner, could NOT STOP GRINNING about this development. So she was happy. And off we went to the DMV for her driver's test.

She passed. And I became sore afraid.

Later in the evening we had a little family party for her, where we all enjoyed cookie cake and coffee. Please note that my grocery store flowers totally matched the cake and candles. I did not plan this. OR DID I?

Me and her grandfather had to tag-team lighting the candles, there were so many. That is because she is old, and so am I.

The birthday girl and her proud parents.


And that was it. Mad left the party with her pals, and proceeded to Taco Bell. The grandparents stayed and we had a weird conversation about what blogs were, and I had to explain Twitter and Dooce to them. They still do not understand.

Happy birthday, Mad Madeleine Chao. You are one in a billion.


Roundup: Neutral + Neon

I am pretty sure this is a trend now. I do not care -- I love it. Should you ever say no to a neutral with a neon? I think not. Behold.

1. Business cards. I am pretty sure this picture is of my actual business cards, which I ordered from the amazing Jordan Ferney a few months ago. I got three different neon colors painted on the edges. Try it; you'll like it! [Cards]

2. Oh, high-tops. How long have I been looking for a pair of metallic gold ladies' high-tops to wear with skinny jeans, like I am Kelly Wearstler or something? A long time. I think these neon yellow ones will do nicely. [High-tops]

3. Oh, hello, linen and neon painting. Come live in my house. [Painting]

4. Clutches are for ladies. Clutches with pineapples are for southern ladies. Clutches with pineapples in a neon color are for me. [Clutch]

5. I have tried and tried to be a nice girl and get my manicures in a neutral color. Alas, I cannot. My SKIN is a neutral color, y'all! My nails are neon. [Link]

6. Beautiful decay + neon = LOVE. [Link]

7. This is what I look like after a beach vacation. Just kidding. It's just what I wish I looked like. [Link]

8. Again, it's summer: your skin is the neutral; your clothes are the color. [Skirt]

9. Wooden bracelet with a painted edge? It's like my business card. On my ARM. [Bracelet]

10. I cannot even talk about this, it's so great. I just know it is beautiful. [Sidewalk Chalk]


Beach Week

Ladies and gentlemen: are you tired of hearing me talk about the beach? I am very sorry. I am going to say a few more words about it. And I am going to show you a lot of pictures. And also I am going to tell you about our insanely amazing beach house, which you should try to rent for yourself. If you can't get it, it's because I have rented it again.

First, let's start with the Instagram photos I took while we were there.

Well, wait, first, I guess I should tell you about the group we went with. It was me/Vince; Al, Chris, and Marlo; Pamie/Jason; and Maggie/Hank. Madeleine not included, sadly.

OK. Instagram. Here we go.

Pictured: Vince and Hank on our specially-ordered canvas rafts, which were awesome. Hank had never been on a Gulf Coast beach vacay before, and was a little afraid of the ocean. He acclimated in record time. Also pictured is Maggie, on another raft waaaaaaay back there. See the red-headed dot? You got it.

Here is what I did every day: put my toes in the sand and read books.

Here is another thing I did every day: wear scarves and bikinis and get a tan.

Here is a thing Allison did every day: drink wine, wear caftans, and pretend to be smoking.

Our house was on the bay side of Perdido Key. In my whole life I had never stayed on the bay side of things, and now I will never stay elsewhere. Our house, which was a) bright green, and b) octagonal, featured a full bar downstairs, hammocks, Adirondack chairs, crab traps, a kayak, a pier for fishing/jumping off, an outdoor shower, picnic tables, a swing, and some other things I am not remembering but were awesome. There was also a crazy little boat house (pictured above) that we thought at first was a sex room, but actually held more cots and fishing paraphernalia.

The door to the shower. $1.00.

One of the wooden posts in the bar featured license plates from previous visitors. There were several Alabama plates with Auburn tags that distressed Allison greatly, as she is a life-long Alabama fan.

The end of the pier had steps down to our own private little beach. In the late afternoons, we watched jellyfish float by and helped Hank catch hermit crabs. Does that sound idyllic? It was.

Have you ever wanted to see Chaos in bathing suits? WISH GRANTED.

Jason looks on as Maggie and Hank get real excited about hermit crabs.

Marlo was ready for the beach at ALL TIMES. Let's not talk about the fact that she was totally not into the beach at all. A girl has to be presentable, doesn't she? Yes.

Having little Hank there reminded me of all the years when Mad was there with us, all excited about nets and sand crabs and whatnot.

After the kids went to bed each night, the adults gathered at the bar for drinking/fighting/singing/games.

This past week has convinced me that Perdido/Orange Beach is better than any other place in Florida. Actually, it's better than any other place in the world. You want to come next year? Let's GO.

(Pictures by AB Chao, Pamie, and Maggie)