Empowering Future Leaders to Bloom

I can remember being a little girl and visiting my Dad at his work—he was a Director for the Guiding Light, a soap opera that was very popular at the time.  He showed me the control room, where he told people what camera to go for for the reaction shots, calling for each camera to create the story we all saw on TV and had me go out on the set where I could see myself in the monitor.

I ran off the set—I was shy and although I secretly wanted to be on camera, I was afraid to be there!  After being in corporate sales for many years, I decided to head back to my original dream of becoming an actress which led me to the career I’m in today!  Although my father didn’t necessarily nurture a career on TV (my parents divorced when I was 7), it did spark an interest in my own mind.

I decided to do the same for a non-profit group of young girls called “Diverse Daisies.” This is a group to bloom nurturing young girls of all ethnicities to learn new skills and engage in new opportunities, designed to motivate, empower and inspire the lives of young women!

The Daisies were so excited to visit Evine and experience behind-the-scenes of our home shopping world!  I gave the girls a tour of our control room where there area many monitors to view different shots on the set, showed them where the product is set up for us to review,
toured the studios, the host room where all of the hosts prepare and they loved seeing the “pink” room (although it’s not pink), where all of the hosts get their hair done before our shows!

The girls were screaming with excitement when I took them to our fashion studio with a runway!  They ran out on the set and wanted to reenact a show, so I picked 2 girls to be a host and a guest and 3 girls to be models with 2 others behind the camera, learning how to operate a jib (moving camera) during fashion shows.

I taught the 2 ‘hosts’ the basics of selling a new Holly Robinson-Peete cardigan and showed the 3 ‘models’ how to walk the runway and model the clothes with attitude and style, and the other girls learned how to move the camera around the set to follow the models.   They had a BALL! The girls were strutting their stuff and were all so proud of themselves afterwards.  Each girl had an opportunity to present and they didn’t want to leave.

A few of the girls were VERY good at speaking and presenting so who knows, we might see them on air in the future!

At the end of our tour, the girls gave me a bouquet of flowers and thank you notes and lots of hugs.

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Style Forecast!

I am so excited that Evine has asked me to host their new fashion show called Style Forecast!  It’s destination programming that will happen every Monday night at 7:00 pm ET starting October 10th.  The team has been busy working on the concept and show planning since early this Summer. There have been loads of fun meetings to discuss this exciting show as well as our set design!  It has just been so much fun being involved at every level.mm-blog-4-production-meeting-1

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I’ll help you figure out what you’re comfortable in, what you like best on yourself, and how to style your clothes in a unique way.  Monday nights are for you!  A girlfriend’s celebration to talk style!  Solve your daily wardrobe dilemma (What should I wear?) with smart fashion tips and clothing advice from your trusted fashion guests like one of my favorites . . . Sam Saboura from One World Fashions!  You know I love what this brand does for my curvy shape and I know you will love it too!

mm-blog-4-melissa-sam-4mm-blog-4-one-world-5Paula’s Closet by Paula Deen is one of my new favorite fashion brands on Evine, and our customers love it too!  You’ll appreciate her great sense of style and humor while she presents her beautiful clothing line.  Oh, and if you have been watching me on Evine . . . you know I have a weakness for a great handbag!  Madi Claire, Anushka, and Pietro will be just a few of the stylish brands that I’ll have the opportunity to present to you.

It may sound silly . . . but I have a passion for fashion! As a teenager,  I would beg my mom to take me to the mall to shop for clothes.  And, of course, I would try on everything.  I’ve always loved fashion but it really clicked for me in high school when I started to realize that a really cute outfit made me feel good and boosted my confidence.  To this day, shopping for a great wardrobe is still fun for me . . . textured fabrics, patent leather, ribbed knits and more!

mm-blog-4-melissa-paula-6mm-blog-4-handbags-7Are you ready for a new you?  It’s a new season, new trends, new must haves, new ideas, and new ways to WOW you!

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Behind the Scenes in NYC

Behind the Scenes with our fashion designers in NYC:  As a former NYC native, I was excited to do some family sightseeing at the Statue of Liberty, visit Ground Zero where two waterfall monuments have been built, naming all of those who passed during 9/11, eat fabulous food and of course,  SHOP!

wr-blog-3-chloeThe shopping in NYC can have your head spin with high end fashions and large chain stores that have cute fashion, but EXPENSIVE –  I was so excited to visit some of our biggest names in fashion to see what they had coming down the pike for fall- Marc Bouwer, WDNY, Indigo Thread Co. and the manufacturer who creates V by Vanessa Williams for Evine.

wr-blog-3-marcFirst stop – the meat packing district – a hot fashion mecca downtown just steps away from Ground Zero and Marc Bouwer Unlimited Headquarters.  Marc was the picture of a working designer in jeans and a t-shirt, working on a stunning gown for some of his big name celebrity clientele’s red carpet moment.  I saw racks and racks of fully beaded gowns, shirts, jersey gowns that he was adding crystals to and day dresses for spring!  He had bins and bins of jewels, trim, lace, Swarovski crystals and all color coded – an artist’s dream!  He began showing me the gowns wr-blgo-3-sequinsworn by celebrities, telling me who wore what and to which major event, and then showed me works in progress for us at Evine – let’s just say sleeves are BIG: bell sleeves, details on the sleeves, and faux suede.  I have his faux suede pants and LOVE them!  What would his fall collection be without a moto jacket in faux leather? Of course those are coming!  While I was there he had me try on some of his samples and I loved them!  They fit so well and his print is fun and inventive!  Marc is a genius with fashion and can make any body look their best – that is the ‘mark’ of a true designer.

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wr-blog-3-yellowNext was a visit to Warren Donner, fashion designer for WDNY.  Warren has been in the fashion business for 35 years and has impeccable taste for trends!  When I saw his studio it was well-organized by color story and I saw so many beautiful pale pink romantic blouses, full bell sleeves with chiffon, sequins galore for the holidays, faux fur chubbies in black and white, and one I wanted to take home featuring chocolate/pale pink and ivory.  He is a master at bringing us affordable trends that make bold and fun statements.  You’ll LOVE what is coming up!  Warren himself has a penchant for ‘Veuve’ and apparently a day doesn’t go by without a glass of his favorite champagne –  you won’t hear me complaining!

wr-blog-3-wdYellow is his color and his yellow Corvette makes a statement everywhere he goes – he drove me to his favorite restaurant, Mr. Chows downtown where everyone knows his name.

wr-blog-3-wd-vetteMy daughter, a budding fashion designer, experienced duck for the first time. Great ready for a fabulous fall line up from Warren!

wr-blog-3-wd-dinnerThe manufacturer who works with some of our most popular brands like Indigo Thread and V by Vanessa Williams is located in NYC, and Susan Gainsborg is instrumental in working with our celebrity lines and helping them to bring their ideas to life!  Vanessa is bringing us jeans in the fall, along with more accents of color that flatter all body types.  There are a few pieces from Indigo, as well – of course I loved the sleeve on this top!  wr-blog-3-white-bellIndigo is bringing you more of what you love in faux suede, tie dyes, tunics, dramatic sleeves, lace and earthy tones that are denim friendly!  we’ve got a lot of Fashion coming up on the calendar, with a big Fall Fashion Day on the list.  See you there!

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I Love Collecting

I love collecting.  But unlike people who collect to accumulate, I collect to use.  My Waterford collection gets quite the workout.  My home furnishings collected over time bring me and my guests great enjoyment.  And my not-so-secret obsession with luxury goods at bargain prices brings me extra excitement in life.  Remember: shopping is a sport and I went professional at the age of nine.

I never should have jumped on EBay.  But I did.  And there is nothing I can (or want) to do about it.

bk-blog-4-ebayYou know.  It seems crazy hearing about Ebay.  People gone wild with excitement and you just think your friends are foolish for spending their money buying something from some stranger on the other side of the globe.  And then, suddenly, something catches your eye.  For me, it was a pair of Puruti Crocodile loafers in mint condition in my size, that new would have been $2,400, which I couldn’t pass up for $130.

bk-blog-4-hermes-ribbonThen it was an Hermès scarf that I wanted to hang as wall art in my second floor landing: The Real Escuela Andaluza Del Arte Equestre.  The colors in red, gold and black just pop and it indulges my love for all things equestrian.  And then I spotted my prize: a rare edition of the Hermes Attrape Tes Reves in Hermès orange that made me hit the ‘Bid’ button again.  Luckily, I had the good fortune of coming across 12 huge, gold wooden frames with glass for $1 each that I’m able to get my contractor to rebuild to fit these silk scarves and other art I’ve collected for my home.  Each frame has saved me about $150- $250.

bk-blog-4-real-framedLooking back, I think I’ve bought more Hermès for others than I have for myself.  They receive new items, and I buy myself a mix of vintage and bk-blog-4-horsenew.  And that’s perfect.  They’re friends that appreciate great quality.  My favorite Hermès tie is one of horses in the most beautiful collection of colors.  May the patron saint of plastic bibs always watch out for me.

But hold your horses, there’s a bit of home schooling you need to do before you go crazy on the Bay.  Lots of luxury goods are knocked off left and right, and sell right beside the real stuff on so many websites.  My advice: learn about what you like and then proceed with caution.  The only thing worse than owning a fake is having paid authentic prices for your trifles.

And trifles they are: things of little value or importance.  Whether it’s race cars or clown figurines, Fiesta ware or velvet paintings of bullfighters, your real wealth is your health and that’s where your money needs to go first.

Back to shopping.  Now, if there was ever a person with a divining rod for luxury bargains, it’s my Aaron.  His first score in this sport since we met was a mint condition Gucci wool blanket that he found at a hipster resale shop for $39.  It was an odd item for them to resell, so likely they didn’t know that it sells today for $1,500.  His second score was a pair of vintage Ray bans made with solid 14K gold frames.  They’re worth about $525.  He got them for $30. Then, (because everything has to be done in 3’s :-0), Aaron bought me a black leather Dolce & Gabbana jacket that was new with tags (and still selling on their site for $5,000), which he grabbed for $100.

I’ve always said and I stand by it today: the world is a bargain if you know where to shop.  Whether it’s $3 or $3,000 . . . it’s only worth what someone will pay.

For those of you who are curious as to this legacy brand I collect:

HISTORY OF HERMÈS

A family-owned label for five generations, Hermès is the epitome of true class and the perfect picture of ‘blue blood.’

bk-blog-4-hermes-boxIn 1837 Paris, Thierry Hermès founded his namesake brand as an equestrian harness and saddle workshop. I wonder if he had any idea that he was creating a dynasty that people all round the world covet among the best brands in design and quality.

bk-blog-4-hermes-horse-logoIn 2016, Hermès luxury goods are sold new and resold pre-owned at jaw-dropping prices, because the lasting quality and designs are just that good.

Some notable points in Hermès History:

bk-blog-4-kelly-bag1929:    Hermès first women’s couture collection was previewed in Paris.

1930’s:  Hermès began to sell their products in the US in Neiman Marcus, New York.

1937:    The first Hermès silk scarf is born.

1956:    The Kelly bag debut after Grace Kelly carries a crocodile handbag to hide her pregnancy.

1984:    Actress Jane Birkin replaced her straw handbag (Thank God! See photos)with a leather Hermès handbag, and thus began the trend of the Birkin handbag.

bk-blog-4-birkin-bag2016:    The Birkin bag has the longest wait list for an accessory today, 6 years.

Remember the episode in Sex In The City when Carrie Bradshaw quipped that she would be “the woman who lives in her shoes”. Well, take a look at the tiny crocodile house that one might be living out of some day, should the money run out.  This Hermès handbag and/or future home could have been yours if you had only bid a single dollar over $300,000.00 on June 6th at Christies, NYC.

bk-blog-4-birkin-bag-saleKnow that you would not be the first person to find an Hermès scarf while thrifting.  A friend of ours found one for a dollar at Goodwill and sold it to someone in Japan for $450.  May the Vintage Gods be with you.

Please share your collections with me.  We will then know each other’s Achilles heel and can keep our eyes out for the must haves that excite us.

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Another life . . .

I love my life as a host at Evine, a wife, and a mom.

At one time, however, there was my first love . . . dance!

These blogs have been a wonderful way to share more about our other passions that we don’t often get to talk about on air.  I couldn’t wait to share my discovery of salsa dance!

fatima-blog-3-1I found dance late in life, well, relatively.  I was in my early 20s and my girlfriend dragged me out to a salsa club.  As I started to learn the steps and become familiar with the music, the obsession . . . oops, I meant passion, grew intensely.

It wasn’t long before I was out dancing 4-5 nights a week, pouring over YouTube videos, and traveling all across the country in search of the ultimate dance fix.

The community of dancers is one of the reasons that I dove in so deep.  Not just locally, but anywhere I traveled, the environment was electric with people from all cultures and all walks of life sharing a common thread and a universal love of music and dance.

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Within our local community, many of us attended classes and events at a dance studio.  I began teaching there, and soon after, started performing with the dance teams.  I have to admit, my favorite part of performing was the costumes!  And yes, there were many hours spent “bedazzling” .

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Another huge draw to being on a performance team was the challenge of each new routine and creating something unique and special with our groups.  We did most of our own choreography and having it come to life was such a thrill!

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Being so immersed in the world of Latin dance, I quickly became intrigued and enamored with the Afro-Caribbean rhythms melded with jazzy big band sounds that create this genre of music. Salsa, Cha cha, Bachata, Merengue . . . I love it all! I became a fiend and began amassing a collection of music that may be enough to start a small radio station.  At some point, I think my weekly iTunes budget was more than my grocery budget!  I was truly eating, sleeping, and breathing salsa.  The next step: I started DJ’ing salsa music.  That was a whole new level of indulgent fun.  I would put together a playlist of my favorite songs and dance on the job.  Work and play came together as one . . . it was a beautiful thing 🙂

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Fast-to post knee injury and a one-year old at home.  Salsa dancing may now be a seldom enjoyed delicacy but, to me, it’s just as juicy and sweet as it’s always been. The great news: it’s like one of your oldest and dearest friends.  You may not see one another for ages, but the moment you reconnect, it’s like no time has passed.

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What’s a Hoosier Anyway?

Last week my family and I set out on our longest road trip to date. Minneapolis, MN to Bloomington, IN.   I can’t believe I didn’t discuss road trips in my earlier blogs . . . isn’t this the season dedicated to hours in the car eating junk food, listening to the radio and counting cows?! I feel like it’s a rite of passage for every American child, and mine were totally up for the challenge.

Backing out of the driveway, my hubby had ‘Holiday Road’ blaring from the speakers (all great road trips must pay homage to Nat’l Lampoons Vacation, whether Aunt Edna is with you or not) and both boys were armed with their favorite movies, headphones and snacks for days. I planned to use these hours to catch up on email, sort through photos on my phone and make sure our family calendar was on point when we returned. But, as always, motion sickness set in half way through my first email and in lieu of being productive, I counted cows.

I feel like when we travel, we throw all rules out the windows. Bed times, nutrition, screen time, all take a back seat to accommodate the road trippin’ timeline. So, when we made our first stop in Chicago, already past the boy’s bedtime, it was fitting that we entered the lobby of the hotel to some serious bass, dark lights and a bar full of 20-somethings in their finest “I’m looking for a date” fashions. The lobby bar was a total club scene and there I stood with my family, covered in chip crumbs, ice cream spills and backpacks full of stuffed animals and dinosaurs. (Parenthood Erin blog 3 fireworkssure does change a Saturday night.) We definitely cramped the cool-kids weekend vibes and found immediate refuge up a few levels in our room. My kids were thrilled to be up way past their bed time, ordering pizza in bed and watching the Olympics. And if that wasn’t good enough, just like in a movie, outside our huge picture window, over-looking Lake Michigan, a fireworks show erupted right in front of us and for the first time in 8 hours, we were all silent, staring out the window. What a treat!! I could get used to this. But all good things must come to an end and all good kids must hit the hay (as my dad would say), lights were soon out and we were all happily in bed.

Erin blog 3 Chi2The next day, we had breakfast in bed, went swimming in the rooftop pool and took the boys on the Navy Pier ferris wheel before packing back up. Next stop: Bloomington, IN. The home of Indiana University, my husband’s Alma Mater. He’s a third generation Hoosier and couldn’t be more proud. By the time we Erin blog 3 ferrisarrived on campus, he was already plotting out what fraternity our boys would pledge, where they will live on campus and how to get the best seats at Assembly Hall for a little IU Bball. (Side note: I really love his love of his school, but grooming our boys this early in life is just not fair to me and my hometown University of MN Golden Gopher pride. Not to mention, I’ll never stop crying if my boys move that far away from me. A counter plan to keep my boys in MN begins now . . . I’ll keep you posted on the progress.) We quickly jumped out of the car and did a walking tour Erin blog 3 IU familythrough campus. Even though IU is a rival Big Ten school to my U o MN, I have to admit, that campus is beautiful!!! After a dinner at one of his favorite restaurants, my husband took the boys to the book store to load up on all things Hoosier red and white. Outfits, posters, stuffed animals (are you kidding me?? This is too much), my boys emerged from the store looking like the newest freshman recruits. We checked IU off our road trip list and got to bed, the next day we were taking off for destination number three.

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Lake Wawasee, in Syracuse, IN is where my husband spent every summer of his childhood. Leaving IU and driving north to Lake Wawasee, my boys were already in their swim trunks, sunscreen on, ready to dive into the Erin blog 3 slidewater as soon as we arrived. Pulling into the cottage my husband spent weeks at as a kid, we made this insanely long road trip, worth every minute. The lake is clear and clean, there are boats and jet skis and toys for everyone. And the cottage is a perfect setting to enjoy the final few days of summer.

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My oldest, William, has a brand new Go Pro that he proudly wore as he jumped in the lake and sped around on the jet ski. James, our baby (fine. He’s almost 5, but will always be my baby) worked up the courage to make the giant lily pad his stomping grounds. We swam, boated, ate and repeated for 36 Erin blog 3 jetskihours! It was mostly marvelous, with just a few minor meltdowns. I mean no family of four can go 36 hours without a few meltdowns over whose turn it is anyway and who was really responsible for dropping the brand new Go Pro and letting it sink to the bottom of the lake . . . right? Right. Other than a few minor mishaps, we returned each night to the cottage a brand new shade of tan (even though we wear a lot of sunscreen) and a whole new level of exhausted.

It was bittersweet packing up for our final voyage, not only because I simply adore time with my three boys, but also because Syracuse, IN to Minneapolis, MN is no joke. About 10 hours, with stops and a nasty rain storm, to get back to home sweet home. But on our way home, there was definitely a sense of pride from all four of us. The kids were thrilled with the new adventures and are already plotting ways to permanently eat breakfast in bed. My husband was beaming with pride that his family had a blast in his favorite state. And I, to be real honest, am thrilled that I was able to keep this family unit in one piece, without massive meltdown for a total of 1000+ miles across the Midwest. Phew.

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Thanks for taking this road trip with me! Next stop: Vancouver with my college roomies . . .

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The Great Outdoors

I’ve never been one with nature.  In fact, the whole idea of interacting with nature has often scared me to into a wild fit of screaming and dancing about like a crazy lady (it all started in third grade with an unexpected visit from a snake . . . eww.  And remind me to tell you about the gecko in Petite St Vincent. I still get shivers up my spine!).  Don’t get me wrong, I love and honor this great planet and respect all living creatures.  They each make this world beautiful and I love observing it . . . from a comfortable distance.

Erin blog 2 swimmingBut every year, my parents, my brother’s family and my family (#TeamNewburg) road trip to northern Minnesota for a week of family time and inevitably becoming one with nature.  This week I’m ‘up north’ with my family and we’re having a blast playing card games, swimming (in the chlorinated pool), taking long walks, snuggling up for movies and ‘unplugging’, as they say.  It’s been an annual trip we’ve taken for the past 8 years.  My boys just love spending time with their grandparents and cousins.  My husband gets more golf in this week than he does all year. My sister-in-law and I eat all Erin blog 2 fishingthe carbs we want.  My dad gets up extra early to take his grandsons fishing and teaches them how to cast and reel.  It really is a special week of family time that I treasure.

It is also a time that brings me insanely and uncomfortably close with the beauty of our great state.  In just a few short days, we’ve seen the following:

  1. Erin blog 2 turtleSnakes basking in the sun on the walking bridge
  2. Turtles taking a break on lily pads
  3. A frog on our grill, just in time for happy hour
  4. A wolf quietly observing from hole #5
  5. A bear, in the ditch watching the cars go by
  6. Eagles circling the pine trees, looking for lunch
  7. A deer surprising us in the gravel parking lot
  8. And more bees, mosquitos, birds, squirrels and chipmunks than we can count!!

Erin blog 2 hand in handIt’s incredible how beautiful a family vacation can be.  Not only for the uninterrupted time together, but also the reminder that even our greatest fears (whether reasonable or not!) can still provide the most amazing beauty.  I sit here in awe of what our great state of Minnesota has to offer and am thankful it provides a place for my family and I to enjoy the simplicity of life.  Lets be clear, I’ll still keep a healthy distance and there will definitely be many more unreasonable episodes of terror.  But, for this one week, I will become one with nature and simply enjoy the great outdoors.

Erin blog 2 fish cleaningI’d love to know how you and your family get away. We’re always looking for ideas for our family.

What do you love most about your state?

What’s your take on the great outdoors? Observe from a distance or become one with it?!?

 

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Summer vacation!

Summertime for me is going on a really cool vacation!  I start planning our vacations months in advance.  I find so much joy in researching the destination that we plan on visiting. I will go online to read reviews of hotels, restaurants and museums. I even ask my friends and family their advice on what they recommend if they have been to that destination before.

For me, it is like being a child again anticipating Christmas gearing up for the trip.  I’m very lucky that my husband and I both enjoy the same things and we both have a passion for travel and experiencing new places every year.

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This year we planned our first trip to Italy to celebrate my 50th birthday.  It was a trip of a lifetime and a dream come true for me.  We landed in Venice on my 50th birthday and then traveled to the Tuscany region and toured some great wineries and had dinner with Stefano and his lovely Mel Stefanowife!  He is one of our best gold vendors and has been going on-air at EVINE for almost 20 years!

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I also had dinner with my friend Manuela Biancospino in Rome. She is another fabulous guest and represents the Toscana Jewelry line.

 

MEl UffiziWe enjoyed going to the Uffizi museum and the Accademia Gallery to see David – just incredible.  From there we left Florence for Positano and Capri, and enjoyed the Mediterranean for a week before finishing our trip in Rome!  We had great walking tours and also were lucky enough to see Pope Francis give his blessing in St. Peter’s Square on Father’s Day.

What about you? Where would you like to go on a trip?  A vacation doesn’t need to be anywhere far off or exotic to be a dream come true, it can be down the block or around the corner!  I’d love to hear from you.

 

 

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When life gives you lemons . . . make lemonade!

It’s a quote my grandmother stitched onto an embroidered piece of fabric and framed it, placing it in my bedroom – it had 2 bunnies that reminded me of Beatrix Potter bunnies – very simple crisscrosses created the words to a very complex life message.  I’ve thought of this quote many times as I’ve experienced tough times – how do I make lemonade out of this?  It means to find the silver lining to the dark cloud, or to make something positive out of something negative.

Like cancer—how can you find the positive in that? One little girl did just that.

For many, summertime is the time to drink lemonade because it’s hot. However, for my family, it’s a time to do our part and fundraise to help find a cure for cancer—one cup at a time! 

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Each summer my daughter, Chloe has held a neighborhood lemonade stand outside of our home where she sells cupcakes, cookies and brownies to raise money for Childhood Cancer Research through Alex’s Lemonade Foundation.   It’s an annual fundraising event that Alex’s parents continued on well after their 4- year old daughter Alex’s death from brain cancer.  She was an inspiration to kids across the nation for telling her mom she wanted to raise over $1 million dollar for a cure for all children who have cancer.  Alex doesn’t know it- but she has more than doubled that goal!  Chloe was just one of the kids she inspired to take action!

Chloe brownie blogDaddy is handy so he made the lemonade stand with pink and yellow strips when she was just 6-years old, soon becoming an attraction to all of the kids in the neighborhood!  Everyone wanted to come and help pour lemonade and sell cookies!  

Wendi group blogIt’s a whole weekend event and, of course, I invited all my fellow hosts – this year Sam Saboura from One World stopped by and did a live Facebook chat with me from the Lemonade stand – AND he contributed!  Laura Duffek from your favorite bedding and Tiffany Style Lighting shows also came around, as well as host Kimberly Wells, who was a big donor this year (thank you Kimberly!!) and even  easy and breezy Becky Wright from OSO Casual!  Host Kendy Kloepfer comes every year and got Chloe police blogto witness the fire truck pulling up onto the block, along with Chloe who, of course, was screaming and jumping up and down (sidenote- why are firemen always cute? Where were my single girlfriends?)  Another donor was even our own CEO Bob Rosenblatt (who is a doll by the way), Invicta Ryan . . . and the list goes on!

 

So, all-in-all, it was a huge success!

By the time Chloe was 6-years old, she had raised over $1,000. Each year since then, she has surpassed that goal, with over $8,000 donated so far!  That first year the local news station came to interview her and last year, a local company who chooses one “little fundraiser” to help raise BIG money, presented her with a $1500 check.  It’s been amazing to witness how people really come out to help, and have been moved by the big heart of a ‘little’ person.

Chloe stand 2 blogThis year Chloe’s Lemonade stand was held in honor of Cheryl,  a long-time beloved friend and nail technician to many of the female hosts at EVINE, who’s had cancer for over a year and is undergoing a major battle for her life.  Prayers for her would be wonderful . . . .

 Learning about compassion and helping others is a lesson I wanted to teach my daughter at a young age—what are you doing to touch the life of others this summer?

 

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Here goes nothing . . .!

When I first learned I would be writing a blog, I immediately knew I’d dedicate the entire blog to fashion. It’s my not-so-secret obsession and playing dress up every day sounds like heaven to me. But in the spirit of summer and truly introducing myself to you, I have to start at home. I have to start with my sweet little family, otherwise known as, Team Newburg.

erin collageTeam Newburg

erin boatAs much as I adore the sunshine and energy of summer, when you’re raising two boys, a husband and a German Shepherd, summer is also a time of insect collections, bug bites, melt-downs, wrestling matches, dirt and bizarre smells.  I mean, seriously bizarre smells.  The boys literally never stop moving.  Even though I’ve been known to have a bit of energy myself, keeping up with these variables (a.k.a. my kids) is no joke.  For erin bikeexample, yesterday was a fairly basic day for us.  We went to two parks, took a bike ride, had ice cream, baseball practice, hockey practice (it never ends!), and played on the trampoline…then the boys asked, what’s next?  Next???  Give a girl a break.  I was thinking a glass of rosé on the patio was a great next…Instead, the boys had to undress outside and get hosed down before I’d let them in the house.  By the time their bath was over,erin ice cream ‘dinner’ was served (we’ll get to my culinary skills, or lack-thereof, later) and bed-time rituals ensued. When they were both finally asleep, so was I…..

erin poolAh, summer. It’s here in all of its glory!  I learned many years ago to throw in the towel of any sort of order in our home and surrender to the chaos. It’s way more fun for all of us and I wouldn’t trade a moment of it.

From the pool to the bike trails, boating to vacations, sports to the BBQ, our summer game is on!!

erin trampoline

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here goes nothing!

 

 

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