Tuesday, December 29, 2009

No Expiration Date.

A few weeks ago Time magazine's cover declared 2000-2009 "The Worst Decade Ever!" Really? Sorry, Time, but this decade was pretty darn special for me. I married my soulmate, became mother to the two most beautiful children on the face of the planet, grew to love my Jesus even more, made wonderful new friends, rekindled old friendships, and nurtured relationships with ladies I've known most of my 35 years.


See? Special. Indeed.

The tunes of these most recent 10 years were pretty hard rockin', as well. There's no way I could list all of my favorite musical offerings of the past 3,650 days...but I will highlight 10* of them. For your listening pleasure. Because I'm cool like that. And because music is my thing, of course.


"Lovestoned/I Think She Knows," by Justin Timberlake
2006
It makes me dance. It's also Tiffany's ringtone. 'Nuff said.
As my husband relates,
"If you say you don't like JT, you're a LIAR!"
Word.



"Set the Fire to the Third Bar," by Snow Patrol & Martha Wainwright
2006
Utterly & completely romantic.
"Your words in my memory, are like music to me..."



"Roslyn," by Bon Iver & St. Vincent
2009
My favorite song of this past year...
...brilliantly written, performed, & produced.
It's ethereal.



"My Party," by Kings of Leon
2007
I've loved these guys for years, long before they were uber famous.
It's just good, real, raw rock & roll. Plain and simple.


"Hysteria," by Muse
2003
From one of my favorite bands comes one of my favorite songs.
It's edgy and glamorous, passionate and pleading...
everything I love in angsty rock!
"I want you now...I want you now...I feel my heart implode..."



"Run, " George Strait
2001
There's a reason this is the ringtone for my husband...
"...straight in a straight line, you can't get here fast enough."



2002
Sigh...a song that tells a story...and a heartbreaking one, at that.
Genius, Jeff Tweedy. I applaud you.


"Love, Where Is Your Fire," by Brooke Fraser
2008 (the Live at the Aotea version is my favorite)
The sound of my soul...the desire of my heart...the words of this song.
"Till the time when You come and I'm whole and we are one,
and the fire in me is complete..."



"Ghost In This House," by Alison Krauss & Union Station
2002
It's hauntingly beautiful, and I'm certain Alison's voice
is how angels sound.


"Reckoner," by Radiohead
2007
Never before have the tambourine & cymbals made their presence known
so eloquently in a song.
I'm not ashamed to admit that I've played this song
over 500 times in the past two years.
"Because we separate...it ripples our reflections..."


"Teenage Dirtbag," by Wheatus
2000

*Yes, this makes song #11. But it's a story song--and, as previously mentioned, I love story songs. Plus this one was released when I was a newlywed and I'd drive around Spartanburg, South Carolina, singing it at the top of my lungs. Oh, the memories. Good times.

Honorable mentions:
--"Bounce," by Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, Dr. Dre, and Missy Elliott
Yes, it's dirrty, but it's my jam of the decade, with the best hook ever.

--"Mad World," by Gary Jules.
His cover of Tears for Fears' original is sublime. Still listen to it almost daily.

--"Sweet Sacrifice," by Evanescence
Because when I grow up, I want to sing like (and look like!) Amy Lee.
"It's true...we're all a little insane..."

"Winter White Hymnal," by Fleet Foxes
They're like the 2nd coming of Simon & Garfunkel. Love this band.

--"Say Please," by Monsters of Folk
My 2nd most favorite song of 2009.


Now I wanna know...what songs/albums/artists have you enjoyed this decade? Please share!



Tuesday, December 15, 2009

In Which We Keep It Real.

Receiving mail is the highlight of my day during the month of December. I know, it takes so little to keep me happy. Opening Christmas cards from friends near and far is like opening a tiny present from each family the card represents. 80% of the cards we receive are photos, and if we're super lucky, the card will contain a newsy "our year in review" letter.


I love these letters.

I especially love the letters from Perfect Families.* You know, the ones where we read that Bill received a substantial raise, Mary was named Hottest Housewife in the Tri-County Area, Billy was nominated for the Heisman, and Sally was not only valedictorian, but also prom queen, class president, and 1st runner up to Junior Miss North Carolina. (Hey, can't win 'em all, Sally.)

Every year I ponder sending out a "Litton Family Newsletter 2009" with our Christmas cards. I mean, I'd love to brag share our family's accomplishments:

*Litton Family Medicine was named local business of the year by the Chamber of Commerce, and continues to grow daily.
*Leigh Anne was invited to speak at a blog conference in Las Vegas.
*Libbey made the All-A Honor Roll for the second year in a row.
*Caroline memorized 20 Bible verses this Fall.

SNOOZE!
How boring! And really...who cares?
Maybe this family cares:
Who can attain such cheesy perfection?

Wouldn't it be far more intriguing if, unlike The Perfect Family, our "Litton Family Newsletter 2009" was brutally honest?

How would it be received if I were to mail the real dope deal to our family and friends? You know, stuff such as...

*Our town's beloved pediatrician relocated to another part of Virginia, hence the reason Litton Family Medicine continues to grow. ("Well, if my kid can't see Dr. Ahsan, might as well go to that Dr. Litton, since I don't wanna drive to Kingsport, TN.")

*Leigh Anne was invited to speak at the blog conference because said event was being run by two of her best friends. Nepotism at its finest, y'all!

*Libbey made her first "B" this year--on a Math test. We fully fussed at her, which, in turn, made her cry for an hour. We make "A's" in this family, ya hear? No "B's" shall be tolerated! (Parents of the year. Yep, that's us. She's 7, by the way. We've since asked her forgiveness.)

*Caroline will only say her Bible verses while in Awana. After being bribed with lollipops and juice boxes. And who can blame her? Reciting God's Word is hard work for a 4 year old.


This is real.
Libbey's 1st Christmas, 2002


I'd also love to include even more personal tidbits such as:

*Scott plays way too much Xbox Live with Robbie, our brother-in-law.

*Leigh Anne gained weight, despite having a home gym equipped with an elliptical machine, treadmill, and Bowflex. Apparently one has to use the gym in order to see results. Gotcha.

*Libbey's Obsessive Compulsive Disorder seems to grow stronger with each passing year. Any hope for her to inherit the laidback "Roth genes" is fading fast. She's pure Litton.

*Caroline's strong-willed nature continues to drive our family closer to Jesus. We pray a lot. So that we don't kill her.

And...

*2009 found the Litton family journeying on fun and educational field trips, to places such as Mt. Airy, NC, (where "Mayberry" is brought to life, because The Andy Griffith Show is beloved by Scott and the girls), and Hilton Head Island, SC, where we taught our daughters to appreciate a sunny day and the She-Crab soup at Charley's Crab.

Ahem.

Even more highlights:

*Allowed the television to babysit our daughters while we cleaned (and by "we," I clearly mean Leigh Anne), or napped (Scott).

*Pawned our children off on Nanna & Poppy or "Papaw" Bill & "Memaw" Kim Cress so that we could have regular date nights. A meal, Starbucks, and frequent trips to Target our vital to our marriage.

*Fed our girls a nutritious supper of Honey Nut Cheerios more than once. Or Twice. A month.

*Took naps, drank peanut butter milkshakes, watched Andy Griffith 9342 times, baked cookies, and listened to Lady Gaga, all with our daughters, in the name of Litton Family Togetherness.

*Oh, and we also traveled to Austin and Las Vegas. Without our children. 'Cause it's not all about them.
*GASP!*
I'll say it again...it's not all about our children.
*GASP!*


Christmas 2006...we were all over the picture-taking by this point.


We may not be the perfect family, but we follow a perfect Savior. And, as Linus so succinctly put it, "That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown." Indeed. Now that's the real dope deal.

Merry Christmas from the imperfect Littons!!!

*If you've sent me a "newsletter" this Christmas, please know I am NOT referencing you with this post. The families of which I speak do not read my blog. And if they do...then...rock on! I'm just keeping it real.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Please Caption This Hilariousness...

This is my niece, Helen, whom I adore. (And who adores me--seriously--I'm one of her faves. Which I'll continue to brag about until she has nothing to do with me.) Helen is 18 months old, and clearly so ahead of her game:


Boys, schmoys...
That's right, baby...
you just keep that attitude until you're 22.




*Mandy, please let me know whose child this is. His hair is killing me. So is his Adidas. And do we love that Helen is completely nonplussed in his presence? We do. Of course we do.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Hey, Y'all!

So...
Last Friday was my birthday and without going into detail, trust me when I share with y'all that it was not exactly the finest day of my life. In fact, it sucked. Plain and simple.

Thank God for friends like The Sits Girls, also known as Heather and Tiffany, who come to my rescue with encouraging, loving phone calls, and virtual hugs across the miles that separate us. Oh, and fabulous birthday gifts. Really fabulous gifts.


I'd be lost without these girls. Seriously. They have my heart.

They've given me yet another gift today--I'm being featured over on SITS! To Heather and Tiffany I say, "Thank you--I love you--V4&After!!!" To the rest of y'all, I say..."I'm so sorry I had nothing clever/inspiring/heartwarming/salacious to share with y'all today. Please forgive me, and as Heather is famous for saying, 'love me through it!'"

Oh, and welcome to Lulaville! I get kinda crazy up in here...with my love for Lost, angsty rock, all things Sci-Fi, YA novels, Paula Deen, distinguished British actors, and my boyfriend...Jason Statham.* But stick around for a while and become my new BFF. A girl can never have too many BFFs. Amen!


Tiffany, Lula, and Heather.
In Mexico.
Yes, I said Mexico.
We brought the boys to the yard. Clearly.
(Without the aid of a Miracle Bra, for the record. Cough-cough.)



*Please love him with me.
Jason statham Pictures, Images and Photos

Hi, Jason.
You can be my birthday present.
Ahem.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas is December 8.

I'm 35 years old. But right now I feel as if I am 5 years old, as I'm bouncing from one foot to the other...because it's December 8 and I've been anticipating this day for quite some time.

When Scott and I were dating, the fourth movie in the Star Wars franchise was released and we saw The Phantom Menace on opening day. The lights dimmed, the theater became eerily quiet in anticipation...and moments before the film started, some dude ran down the aisle singing, at the top of his lungs, "Star Wars, Star Wars, we've waited a million years for a new Star Wars!" His fellow nerds--me and Scott included--burst into laughter and applause.


I feel exactly the same today. I may or may not be running around the house, singing, "December 8, December 8, I've been waiting so long for December 8!!!"

"Why?" you may be asking. Are you asking? 'Cause...duh, I'm so gonna tell y'all the reason behind my glee...

Speaking of Glee...

The Music of Glee, Volume 2.
It's only my favorite new show of 2009.
Volume 1 is amazing.
Volume 2 releases December 8.
You should really own both.


I saw this with my friend, Lacey, at midnight on July 15, 2009...
I will view it again (and again!) on December 8, 2009,
after it arrives on my doorstep.
Simply brilliant...simply devastating...
simply...adorable...
Harry+Ginny=LOVE
(I still love Snape. I don't care what any of you say.)



My love of angsty rock runs deep.
That's what she said.
My love of this band
runs even deeper.
That's what she said.
We 30 Seconds to Mars fans
have been waiting over 4 years for a new album.
Thank you, Jared Leto & company, for finally delivering.
(In other news, I fully believe Jared Leto is a vampire.*)



Ahem.
No words are necessary.
I love you.


My words are not necessary, but the great Entertainment Weekly
just named Lost as the #5 greatest "item" of the decade:
"Plane crash. Smoke monster. Polar bear. Crazy French lady.
The Others. The hatch. The Dharma Initiative. Time-travel flashes.
Name another network drama that can so wondrously
turn a ? into a !"

Precisely.
Amen.




All this goodness...oh, it's just too to contain. December 8 is a very big deal for me. Clearly.

What are you looking forward to this week? Please share...




*Tell me Jared Leto's not a vampire.


Friday, November 27, 2009

He Makes Me Smile.

There's nothing I love more than an actor who is extremely grateful to be working.


There's nothing I love more than a performer who is multi-talented.

There's nothing I love more than a man who doesn't take himself seriously.*

There's nothing I love more than an extremely attractive dude.

There's nothing I love more at 9:00 on Wednesday evenings than Glee.


Mark Salling, you will be my complete undoing. I kind of dig you a whole, whole lot.

If you're not watching Glee, you're missing out. This video made me smile...and it also makes me want to be friends with Mark Salling. With this homage he's proven that he is my people.

He is also gorgeous. 'Nuff said.

*He sings, "I pee, poo, text..." Come on, y'all...that's just awesomeness.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Settle Down, People!

WARNING: If you have NOT seen New Moon, please read no further. If you have viewed the movie, please continue...and please comment accordingly.



For the record, I would like to praise God. Don't ever even hint that He doesn't answer prayer. Truly He does, as the fasting and praying completely paid off.

I loved the movie.
Yes, I'll say it again.
I loved it.
New Moon was fantastic.
From henceforth, the first movie shall be renamed
SUCKLIGHT.


Now, the movie wasn't perfect...I have very small, very minor complaints about stuff that's better thought of as bygones. No big deal, y'all. We'll agree to move on and realize that no book to film adaptation is perfection. Not even my dearly beloved Gone With the Wind.

However, the Twitters and bloggers and general inhabitants of the intrawebs all seem to be dissing one particular scene in New Moon. A scene I happened to really enjoy:
The "frolicking," as it appears to have been named
by Twilight die-hards.

Whatever.

Yes, the wardrobe is cheesy...I admit that. But seriously, people...what part of Breaking Dawn (which this scene references, of course) wasn't cheesy? Esme gifts the couple with a freakin' cottage! Bella hunts in a blue silk dress! And what part of their child's name didn't clue you into this story becoming one huge Swiss Colony fromage fest?* And clearly, Bella & Edward are wearing Valentino's Cottage Collection, available Fall of 2011.

Just love them through it, y'all. Love that we got a teeny taste of Bella Cullen...all golden-eyed (thanks, Jamie!) and sparkly and flushed from delicious vampire lovin'.

Is all I'm saying.

Because I loved it. The expression on her face, in this scene, is nothing short of pure satisfaction. Bella is all but screaming, "Yeah, I tapped that. Deal with it!" Word.

When you really break it down, some woodland "frolicking" is minor when compared to the monstrosity that was Sucklight. I mean, really...

My work here is done. Discuss amongst yourselves, please.

*I am not dissing Breaking Dawn. I loved the final chapter of Bella and Edward's story. I'm not a hater, just a recognizer of ridiculousness. Ridiculousness that I deeply loved. That is all.





Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Sound of My Soul.

One year ago I was fairly obnoxious in sharing my love for a particular series of young adult books written by a thirty-something housewife from Arizona.

One year ago I spent hours reiterating, to naysayers, "It's not a book about vampires. It's not a 'teenage' novel!"

One year ago I wrote many blog posts begging y'all to read what I deemed the greatest love story of our generation.

One year ago I flew to California to view the big screen version of said love story, with two ladies I'd met in early 2008. Women I'd befriended because of our shared love of a particular book, which, at that time, was still rather obscure. We bonded over a sparkly vampire and an ordinary, yet spunky girl. (Heather & Tiffany, I love y'all. Deeply. V4&After.)

One year ago I was proud to to identify myself as a "loud and proud fan" of four books in a Saga too fantastic for words.

What a difference a year makes!


Have you ever had a favorite cosmetic? Let's say...a lip gloss. This particular lip gloss is fan-freakin'-tabulous. It glides on perfectly, shines like the top of the Chrysler building (name that movie!), and never ever traps stray strands of hair on your perfect pout. I mean, this is the lacquer to end all lip lacquers.

So you tell the world about it. "You MUST buy this product--it will change your life and add so much delight to your existence!"

The world heeds your advice and soon this lip gloss enrobes the pucker of every other mouth you see. Fantastic!

Alas...one fine day...some unfortunate gal decides to paint on the gloss with a heavy hand. Oh, woe the sloppiness! Or perhaps you see a well-intended woman wearing frosted pink eyeshadow, along with the gloss to end all glosses.

Frosted. Pink. Eyeshadow.

Your gloss has been ruined. It's intended effect is cheapened. Cheapened like a working gal at a truck stop.
"Hey baby, you lookin' for date?"

This, my friends, is how I feel about the fandom that encompasses The Twilight Saga.

The fiending (a phrase coined by the genius Kristen Stewart in last week's Entertainment Weekly) have taken my beloved love story and frosted it with tacky, sparkly, really offensive pink eyeshadow.

Countless merchandising fails too numerous to mention (I refuse to enter a Hot Topic, on principle alone), a bojillion websites* devoted to the movie and its cast, and seemingly every magazine cover of the past 52 weeks. One cannot escape the phenomenon that is Stephenie Meyer's tale of Bella and Edward.

It's too much. For me. To say I'm over it is putting it mildly.

Cheapened. Heather described it thusly, many months ago. It's truly the best description. And it deeply saddens me.

When sweet Fran inquired earlier in the week, "Are you so excited for New Moon in a few days?" I hung my head. Sighed heavily. And admitted to myself...

"Eh. Whatever."

Will I see New Moon this weekend? Sure! I've heard it's remarkably better than the first film. This makes me happy. Maybe this means all the fasting and praying has paid off. Maybe Chris Weitz reads Lulaville. He is a down dude, after all.

So while the embarrassingly overwrought fandom ("My life is complete because I've been in Robert Pattinson's presence!" Really? Um...OK. No wonder the poor dude is afraid to walk around without 43 bodyguards.) has stolen a bit of my Twilight joy over the past year, I am resolute in my refusal to hand it over completely. Because in the end, my love for this story is remains intact. It's still Edward and Bella. The Edward and Bella I fell in love with almost three years ago. And no one can take that brilliance from me. Even if its shine is slightly murky, I'm able to peer past the fandom flaws and continue to appreciate the love story dreamt by one Stephenie Meyer. I'll even appreciate it for not being well-written literature. 'Cause...uh...it's not.

Yeah. This is hot. I don't care who you are. It is delicious.
Well, if we rid Rob of a bit of that grease paint.


If you see New Moon on the big screen this weekend, please let me know what you thought of it. If you are not seeing New Moon, I won't judge you. Promise!


*Before someone feels as if their Cornflakes have been peed upon...I am not knocking any Twilight-related fansite. I've met some of my most favorite people in the world because of a few, very special websites devoted to The Twilight Saga. Sites run by "normal" people. Ahem.

However...I have, and will continue to judge any website run by grown women who attend "Twi-conventions" dressed in vampire capes. Capes bought at Party City for $9.99.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Handkerchief In Hand...

I've loved music for all of my almost-35 years. Many songs have moved me to tears, but no song has made the waterworks flow as quickly as this one...

"Poison and Wine," by John Paul White and Joy Williams, also known as The Civil Wars.


Back in the Spring I received a text from sweet Bekah, telling me to run to MySpace, to download The Civil Wars' free, live album...which I did, because 95% of the time I comply when Bekah requests something of me. (That live album is, without a doubt, my favorite musical offering of 2009.)

I sat at my computer, weeping, the instant I heard John Paul sing the opening line...
"You only know what I want you to..."

I have lived the words of this song. No, not with my husband, but in past relationships, both platonic and romantic. This song slays me. It is exquisitely painful. And I wanted to share it with y'all. Please listen...and don't say you haven't been warned. There might be tears. Mine...and yours...

p.s. Thanks, Bekah--again--for the text alerting me that, "The Civil Wars have made a video for Poison & Wine!" You're the kind of enabler I really love. Please visit the taco truck for me this week...and send a pic!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

A Mad Dash...

Last week I shared my love of Zooey Deschanel and my certainty of being her best friend. If we were to ever meet, that is. (And thanks to all of you who mentioned her starring role in The Tin Man. I'm watching it now!)


In this week's installment of "I want to be friends with..." I'd like to introduce you to a man I'm digging in the most diggable manner possible.

We have a lot in common. He is married. He has children. He is originally from Georgia and is a Bulldog fan. That right there seals the deal, folks. Georgian by birth, Bulldog by the grace of God. Ahem.

The only differences I see between myself and this man is...well, he's a dude. And he's Mormon, whereas I'm southern Baptist. But seriously...bygones...he's clearly my people. Why?

Because he's written my new favorite book.

Who is this man? Oh, just James Dashner:
Hi, James!


I read his newly released YA novel last Friday. Yes, in one day. I could not put it down.

The last two books I deemed "unputdownable" were Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games and Catching Fire. So y'all know I'm serious when I beg of you...READ THIS BOOK!
Click here for the book's website.

I read this page turner almost like a screenplay...I literally saw it on the silver screen of my mind. This the best compliment I can give to Mr. Dashner, because his story is so descriptive and detailed. To say I was a captive audience is putting it mildly. I won't even begin to attempt to summarize the story, other than to say it's simply delicious. Delicious along the lines of...Lost. And most of you know how I feel about Lost. (Best show in the history of ever.) Fast-paced, haunting, frightening, inhumane while still being very human, entertaining, and can't-catch-your-breath exciting. This is The Maze Runner.

Yes, I'm certain I need to be friends with Mr. James Dashner. Our kids could play together, my husband would be his family's physician. Surely his wife and I would get along! Then James and I would discuss UGA football ("Let's give Cox another season before we judge him..."), as well as the soundtrack for the movie version of The Maze Runner. Which I will supervise and produce.

Ahem.

Again, I beg y'all...read The Maze Runner. I did not steer you wrong with That One Book That Shall Not Be Named (rhymes with "Highlight."), or The Hunger Games and Catching Fire. I place The Maze Runner right up there with these rock stars in the world of Young Adult Fiction. Seriously.




Thursday, November 5, 2009

In My Head I Hear RuPaul Telling Me To "WORK!"

One night when we were 18, my high school best friend and I were getting ready to go out for the evening. I can't remember what I was wearing, but I thought I was looking pretty dang cute...till she turned to me and remarked, "Leigh...you can't accessorize for crap."


I should've prefaced this by saying that my best friend was/is gorgeous. She was the freakin' homecoming queen! (And eventually my matron of honor.) Lauren (not her real name--and now the Warner Robins peeps are smiling!) probably thought she was doing me a favor, in her own, brusque manner. But that comment has haunted me for almost seventeen years.

I cannot accessorize for crap.

To this day I never feel "put together." Sassy. Decked out. Dressed to the nines. No matter how hard I try, I'm just not cute. And I still hear Lauren's voice in my head, confirming my lack of fashion success.

So when I first laid eyes on sweet Summer at Sitscation last month, I audibly gasped. Summer was wearing the most fabulous white dress and I instantly hated her. "I cannot be friends with someone so chic," I thought to myself. Who can live up to such perfection? Not me.

I love when God proves me wrong. Because not only did I fall in love with Summer and her blog, Le Musings of Moi, I found out she is a kindred spirit. A soul sister, in more ways than one.

Seriously...one day I'm gonna be famous. And Summer is going to be my stylist. And we're gonna travel to France and Atlanta and London and just be the sassiest girls in the world. I'll feel sassy, too--because I will have been styled to perfection by Summer. Sigh...I long for that day.

Until then, I begged Summer to let me pick her brain for nuggets of stylish wisdom. I also asked for pictures of her fabulous self, so that I could share this wisdom with y'all. Because that's how much I love her--and that's how much I love each of you!

Please enjoy Summer, soon-to-be a ridiculously famous stylist. For me. When I'm rich. Ahem. (She's also funny as all get out, to boot!)

Lula: Define your style for me...
Summer: I have somewhat of a feminine style, but always with a bit of edge and funk. Comfort is big for me, too, so I'm not into the trends that don't make me feel comfortable. How 'bout we go with "sweet-n-sassy chic?" I think that has always been my adult style. Not adult as in...you know..."bomp chicka bow wow." Adult as in the age of 18. Just making things clear.


L: Since your style is a mixture--sweet & funky--how do you incorporate bits from each into one cohesive look?
S: I would pair a feminine dress with leather boots. Or leather and lace together. I try to be sure that one thing about my outfit is something that stands out...something sassy! Such as a statement ring, chunky necklace, lots of chains (shout out to Mr. T!), a flower clip for my hair, bold colors, or a dramatic pattern.

L: Do you believe the ability to accessorize is something one either has or does not have? Can it be learned? Please say I can learn this, as I've been haunted by my non-sassiness for 17 years!
S: I definitely think you can learn anything when it comes to fashion! And to anybody who says otherwise...obviously, they know nothing about style! A good way to learn about accessorizing is to pay attention to your favorite shows, magazines, and celebs. And obviously I don't mean Rock of Love, Star Magazine, or Britney Spears! Come on girls, use your judgement! And remember, everyone has their own personal style. Find out what you love and wear it with confidence.

L: What are your favorite, basic wardrobe staples?
S: Boots and white Hanes tank tops! Seriously, I wear boots all year round--I don't care what the fashion police say! And white Hanes tanks go with everything! I wear them under girly dresses if I want to tone them down a bit...under sweaters, under button-ups...even to bed! Must. Have. My. Hanes!

Last thing that is a must in my closet? Tunics. Lots and lots of tunics. I always feel cute in a tunic paired with jeans or pants.

L: What items should every woman own--regardless of age or body type?
S: Anything that makes you feel amazing! Honestly, we all have to have at least one item that just makes us looks and feel fabulous. It could be a pair of jeans that make your bootie look just right. A pair of heels that make your legs longer than life. A necklace that adds flair to everything you own. Or even an incredible handbag that shows off your style, even when you're venturing out in sweats. (I use that last one A LOT!)

L: What are your favorite stores? Favorite place to save? Splurge?
S: For good deals I love thrift stores and Target. But because I like to have stuff that won't be seen on everyone I walk by on the street, I've been shopping less and less at Target--for my sassy pieces, that is.

This may seem crazy, but I hate splurging! To me, especially after thrifting, Forever 21 and Charlotte Russe both seem like quite a splurge! Although...for Mother's Day last year, my husband gave me my first pair of Louboutins. If I ever save my spending money long enough, I could totally see myself splurging on another pair of those. Mmmmmmm, baby...come to Mama!



See why I just love her? And why I want her to take me from frump to fabulous? I also want her legs, but that's another post for another time...

Thanks, Summer--I'm so glad I decided not to hate you. And you know I say that with all the love in my heart.




Oh yes...wanna know the winner of the fantastic clutch and iPod pouch? Sure you do.

Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:

29 

Timestamp: 2009-11-06 12:04:09 UTC

Number 29 is...SUNSHINE! (Her blog is private, so I can't link her!) Congrats, Sun...I'll get your goodies to you right away!



(My favorite friend, Lauren, has featured stylish friends on her blog...and that's where I got the idea for this post. So thanks, Lauren. I'll never be as sassy as you.)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year!

When I was a child there was nothing more exciting than coming home from a day at school to discover the Sears Wish Book in our mailbox. Oh, happy day! My brother and I would fight to see who'd get to peruse its pages first. And I'd always win because he'd get distracted by He-Man...or maybe it was She-Ra's boobs. Whatever.


I'd curl up on our couch with that coveted Wish Book, a Debbie Cake (as we call "Little Debbie" treats in the south), and an enormous glass of milk, and oooh & ahhhh my joyous way through each flip of its pages.
This entire scenario was pure childhood bliss. I remember it so fondly.

Alas, now I am an adult. And the Sears Wish Book no longer holds sway over me. Because it has been replaced...


I give you The Mother Ship's Holiday 2009 Catalogue!
Mine arrived in yesterday's mail. After putting my girls to bed, I curled up on the couch. Instead of Debbie Cakes and milk, I had a more grown-up snack of Shiraz and a bunch of mini Snickers from the girls' Halloween loot. I'm not ashamed to admit this, either. I'm also not ashamed that I earmarked nearly every other delightful page of this year's holiday offerings.*

Stila and Cargo and NARS, OH MY!

It's pure "grown up" bliss!

And it is, indeed, the most wonderful time of the year. Sing it, Andy!

No one does it better than Mr. Williams. No one. Don't even try it.



*Dear family members who read Lulaville but never comment...you know Sephora gift cards are always appreciated, for both birthday and Christmas. Thank you. Love, Me.


Monday, November 2, 2009

New! Free! Yeah, That Got Your Attention.

A day rarely passes that I don't say, "I want to be friends with ______________." (Fill in the blank!) There are so many famous--and infamous--folks out there that I'm positive would be all BFF with me, if we were to ever meet. In person, that is.


And then we'd begin our relationship and say things like, "Where have you been all my life?" or "Let's get some Taco Bell before watching the Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman marathon," while giving each other mani/pedis and guiltily flipping through the pages of the Enquirer.

Thusly, I've decided to start a new, regular feature here in Lulaville, called, "I Want To Be Friends With..." Please play along with me, alrighty?



Have you ever seen Almost Famous?
It's only one of my most favorite movies in the history of ever.
And it's the film that introduced me to the fantastically fabulous
Zooey Deschanel.
(Pictured here with Frances McDormand & Patrick Fugit.)


Here's the trailer--please watch. No really, you have to see it. My fave Zooey moment comes at 0:12.


Zooey is my style icon.
Witness this adorableness:
(I lust after those shoes. Mary Jane heels. Perfection!)



This dress slays me, completely.



No one does vintage better than my Zooey:



Why helloooooo there, plaid! Simply gorgeous!



"I want to be friends with Lula..."
Yeah, she's totally thinking that in this shot:



On anyone else this dress would be cheesy.
Zooey makes it fresh, whimsical, and utterly chic.
She's a genius, clearly.

I want Zooey to take me shopping...and school me in her ways.

And if it's not enough that she's an amazing actress and fashionista, Zooey is also an utterly talented musician. She performs with the awesome M. Ward, under the name of "She & Him." Please love this video with me, as it is completely enjoyable.

Do I love that She & Him took a Motown classic (by the great Smokey Robinson & The Miracles) and made it their own? I do. Oh, I really do.


In honor of my inaugural edition of "I Want To Be Friends With..." I am now offering the chance to give one of you something especially delightful.

Check out this gorgeous wristlet & iPod (or cell) holder:
Are these not two fantastic pieces?
These make me feel uber-sassy...like Zooey!*

The inside of the wristlet is the same fabric as the flower--so chic!

Sweet Abby, also known as sister to sweet Bekah, has a new Etsy shop, Sewing Snails. ("Snails" is her nickname, and what I call Abby...because Bekah calls her "Snails.") Check out her offerings...the citrus half-apron is cleverly cute. I'm talking better-than-Anthropologie, y'all. Really & truly!

Want a chance at winning the wristlet and iPod (or cell) pouch? If you live in the US or Canada, simply leave a comment and tell me whom you'd want to be friends with. Other than me, that is. Comments will be closed at 11:59 pm(Eastern time) on Thursday, November 5.


*No celebrity endorsement intended or implied.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Anything Can Happen On Halloween...

If you've read Lulaville for any amount of time, you know that my most favorite actor in the history of the world is Tim Curry. If you're new to my world of randomness, I'll restate my love:

I adore him.


My very favorite Halloween movie features quite a performance by Mr. Tim Curry...and it's not the role you're thinking of:
Dr. Franknfurter, how I love thee!

Please don't misunderstand--I am crazy over Rocky Horror Picture Show. I own the DVD as well as the CD soundtrack of the movie. I don't get people who don't get RHPS. It's as simple as that. Sorry if I've offended you, but I gotta stay true to myself here. After all, it is my blog.

But that's not what I want to discuss.

My favorite Halloween flick is a little-known gem from the mid-1980's, called The Worst Witch, starring a young Fairuza Balk, Charlotte Rae (of TV's The Facts of Life), Diana Rigg, and yes...my beloved Tim Curry.

I describe it as "little known," because nearly every time I mention it--which is always during the Halloween season--invariably the person I'm speaking with will reply, "I have no idea what you're talking about."

TRAVESTY! Utter travesty, y'all!

My brother and I watched The Worst Witch on HBO throughout the 80's, and then on the Disney channel in the early 90's. When it became available on DVD about 10 years ago, we snatched it up as if the DVD case had diamonds embedded in its spine.

This little gem of a movie has terrible special effects, and the acting is not exactly the finest in the world. (Apologizes to the always amazing Diana Rigg, who saves the movie with her subtle yet campy portrayal of Miss Hardbroom.) In fact, the one word I'd use to describe The Worst Witch is cheesy. But it's adorably cheesy. And I love it.

Today, If you have not yet dropped any LSD and need to take an acidic trip, may I present to you now...Tim Curry as The Grand Wizard in the best little movie ever, The Worst Witch:


I've always thought that this musical number embodied what it must have felt like to have been at Woodstock.

Seriously.

Have you seen The Worst Witch? If so, please share your glee with me. If not, please do us both a favor and rent it! Or, share your favorite Halloween film with me. It won't be as cheese-tastic as a movie about a school for young witches, but I'll take your recommendations into consideration.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Tickled Pink.

My Sweet Caroline,


Tomorrow (October 27th) you'll turn 4 years old. I love that you share your birthday with your Great Aunt Mitzi, even if you never did get to meet her. I love that you were born in October, because it's my second most favorite month of the entire year. And I love that you're a little girl...because, like your Mommy, you love pink. And, like your mommy, you're obsessed with breasts.

Yes...breasts. We are not afraid of that word in this family.

We both appreciate a good pair of boobs. And we're not afraid to admit it! For the first year of your life, you really appreciated my set...because that's where you found nutrition, warmth, and comfort.

October is not only your birth month, it is also National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It deeply saddens me that breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in women, aside from non-melanoma skin cancer.

I hate cancer. And I hate breast cancer the most of all. Imagine our precious boobs being attacked by the most hateful disease in the world. It really, really stinks.

My prayer is that a cure for all forms of cancer is just a mere breath away. Until that day, know that I'll do my best to educate you and your big sister, so that we'll maintain proper breast health. We gals have to stick together...our breasts are far too important to us. Our lives are far too important to us.

Cancer can suck it. Yeah, Mommy said, "Suck it!"

Happy birthday, my Sweet Caroline. I pray that by your 14th or 24th birthday, breast cancer--and all forms of cancer--will be a thing of the past. October can be National No More Cancer Month. Oh, we'll still wear our pink ribbons...but they'll be on our frilly, fancy brassieres. We've earned such luxury!

I love you,
Mommy
xoxo

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Hopelessly Devoted To You, Vegas Style!

I'm such an attentive person. When I'm with my friends, I'm completely focused on being in the moment with them.


I took my 100% in-the-moment self to Las Vegas last week, to celebrate SITScation, a gathering of women bloggers who've all been united by The Secret Is In The Sauce. SITS was founded by my two BFFs, Heather & Tiffany, as a way to unite women (and a few men!) by increasing their blog traffic, encouraging comments, and providing tons of new sites for the SITStas to read.

Having been a SITSta for the past year and a half, I was so excited to finally have the chance to meet ladies I have "known" for most of my entire blogging career. I mean, meet them in person. That's a Very Big Deal, ya know? I was determined to devote myself to spending hours in conversation with these ladies I've "known," yet have never met "in real life."

So Scott and I headed off to Vegas. Where I met..."Lolli" from Better In Bulk and Laurie from Tip Junkie, two of the most lovely women in the world.
Oh, look...there's me--in the background--with the famous blog designer,
Julie, from LeeLou Blogs!
Look at how I'm utterly devoted to conversing with
sweet, precious Julie. (Whom I really, truly adore!)



I didn't take this picture of Michael & Katrina...
but so many of us prayed for Michael during his brain surgery back in the winter...
...so I'm happy to have this picture of my "in real life" friend & her healthy husband!
Yes, this is the famous "Kat" from Sunshine & Lemonade!
I was all, "Dude--I see you all the time!"
Therefore, I didn't find it necessary to hang with her 24/7 while in Vegas..
See my devotion?
(Kat, you love me...right?)



I also did not take this picture...
...of my too-fabulous-for-words heels.
Which were comfortable, but not on the dance floor!
Not only am I devoted to my pals, I clearly take great care of my camera.
It never left my side for one moment.
More like...um...120 moments!



What better way to celebrate your birthday than in Las Vegas!
Shannon of Welcome to the Nuthouse, wore her birthday crown rather regally.
She's yet another "in real life" friend, whom I talk to regularly...
...so I was all, "Love you...here, take my camera!"
Actually, I didn't tell her to take my camera. She (and others!) just did.
'Cause that's how we roll.
Oh, but that gal throwing up the peace sign?
MY STARS! It's ELENA, from Manwaring Moments!
Can I tell you how excited I was to finally meet Elena in person?
And how thrilled I was to sit in her presence...for all of half an hour.
Sigh...our time together was too brief.
She had no qualms about capturing precious memories with my camera.
The one I left behind. Because I'm so attentive. Ahem.



And here we have Francesca, of Mayhem & Moxie,
and Kathy, of Mama's Losin' It.
Yes, both are very famous girls, with whom I was honored
to speak with on the SITS panel during Saturday's sessions.
These are two of my favorite people in the world.
Look at them posing...smiling for the SITStas...
And then there's me...good ol' Lula...
rummaging through my purse.
While sitting in front of a room full of people.
Yep...hopelessly devoted to the task at hand. No doubt.




Truly, my devotion during SITScation was never more evident than
when my beloved Angie, of Seven Clown Circus,
was pouring her heart out during our panel discussion.
Angie--she of gorgeous hair, face, body, et. al--even posted
(Please ignore the fact that I have 19 chins in this picture.)
"But I was Twittering!" I wailed to Angie.
"Um...yeah...your phone is sitting in front of you!' she countered.
Dang.
But then I realied...
I WAS PRAYING!
Yes, there I am...in front of 100 women...praying my little heart out...
"Dear God, please bless my sweet friend, Angie...and help me
to not covet her most beautiful red hair!"




The SITS Panel.
Also known as, "Dude, I am so not qualified to be at this table!"
This is where I started singing
that Sesame Street classic...
"One of these things does not belong here,
one of these things is not the same..."
Yeah...uh-huh...
And I still have my hands in my purse.
Francesca, Tiffany, Kathy, Me, Angie, and Heather
What saddens me more than anything is that
I didn't get a single picture of me, Tiffany, and Heather together...
...the entire weekend. (Thank God we had our cruise vacay last month!)
Because obviously, I was too busy being devoted to
everyone else attending SITScation.
Clearly.
Honestly.
Completely.
All while praying...without ceasing.

Oh, but you're welcome, girls...