Tuesday, January 26, 2016

35

Hello?

It's me.

I always have this song stuck in my head.

And I LOVE it.

Many many years ago, when the church I went to was a quaint, little church, they had cards for attendees to fill out so they could get a feel for who was coming to church. I brought a friend of mine who was a quite a few years older than me, and the card didn't just ask: How old are you? It wanted you to check a box to see which age backet you fit in. I believe there was a box for 20-34 year olds, which is the box I gladly checked. My friend however, had to check the 35-50 box. Thirty-five to FIFTY. I would now fall into that category! With fifty year olds!

But in all seriousness I am totally fine with being 35. I have had a very delightful birthday month, because I have phenomenal people in my life who floor me with their kindness, thoughtfulness, generosity, and friendship. My parents forgot my birthday, which is absolutely and completely fine, because they belong in the 67-100 year old bracket. I feel sorry for them more than anything else ;)  (Why can't I use emojis in my blogpost? Those little things say so much without saying anything at all.) But back to my birthday, it was a great one. Except I had one major party-pooper that followed me around to all of my birthday outings- and that party pooper is Guttate Psoriasis. AKA The Bane of my Existence.

If you're new around here, or you have a really bad memory (cause you're 67-100, or you're a mom) I struggled with guttate psoriasis last year (and on my birthday to boot). And when I say I struggled with it- I mean that it beat me down hard and good. It caused me to spiral down into a depression that caused me to hate myself, robbed me of my joy, and played such insane mind games with me that I convinced myself that my husband was cheating on me. Which he wasn't. But like I said- I was struggling slash losing my mind.

So now my guttate psoriasis is back, but fortunately the angst and insanity is not. Time hasn't healed me, but I have still done much healing, thank you very much Adele. You may be 25, and way richer and more famous than me, and you write great music, and I like the way you do your eye make up, and your skin is so clear and creamy- like cream cheese... I got nothing You are awesome Adele!

I am seeing my Chinese Herbal Doctor again and eating overly healthy foods and nothing that I actually want to be eating (Big Mac and a big Coke with a side of pizza.) I am doing weird things again like pouring apple cider vinegar on my head and rubbing coconut oil amd olive oil on my face and body. I basically smell like my pantry, and I have moments where I really really hate my skin (as in every time I look in the mirror) BUT that has not translated into me hating myself. Victory. I am loving my life, and very excited for the many different things that are coming up this year. I do believe this 35-50 portion of my life is going to be the best age bracket yet.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Our Digital Christmas Letter

Merry Christmas! 5 Days ago...

We did not manage to send out Christmas cards this year, nor did I manage to get this Christmas letter/ blog post out before Christmas. But Christmas was less than a week ago, so I am still just a tiny bit proud of myself for writing this at 6:30am, before the year is up!

We had a ridiculously memorable year! It started off with some hard, crappy, sad, and difficult things, but as seasons change, so did the trajectory of our year, and we experienced many wonderful, amazing, unexpectedly incredible things.

In the winter, we were still a family of six. We still had little J with us (who came to us in July 2014), and she turned 2 in January, and I kid you not- that's when things started to go downhill for us. Terrible twos is real people. As real as paper, princesses (Kate Middleton.), PMS, and psoriasis. I happened to be struggling with the worst outbreak of psoriasis of my life, that had started in November, and didn't disappear until about April. If you missed out on that ugly chapter of my life, you can read more about it here . We had friends going through very difficult times too, and it was as if this dark cloud was just looming over us. Chris had become a sergeant in October, but was working nights and weekends and it was a really difficult transition for me. The moral of the story is: everything was very difficult for me in this particular season of life.

But the not-so-difficult things were that Lily turned 8 and Topher turned 7 just as we were transitioning to the spring. Lily is really starting to blossom with her piano playing, and Topher amazes us with his origami skills! Lily and Topher are still great buds (having them a year apart was totally worth it!) and they love playing video games together on the weekends and playing crazy games that they make up with their cousins. Spring was definitely better than winter, especially because J was in childcare during the week, which helped me to catch my breath and regain some of my sanity. I felt guilty about sending her to school, especially cause I am a stay-at-home mom and Mia was still home with me, but what I learned in this season of life was that I needed help, and I needed to accept it without guilt or shame.

Summer turned out to be all kinds of wonderful. Though this is usually my least favorite season of the year, living in the desert and all, but it ended up being so very enjoyable! We went camping with Barb and Jerry and , and though it was surprisingly very wet and cold, we enjoyed being with our family. Then we went to Toronto! We got to meet Jordan, my newest nephew, eat tons of food, hang out with our family and friends, and Chris and I managed to get away for three days to pre-celebrate our 10 year anniversary. It was SO GLORIOUS. I didn't ever think it would be possible for Chris and I to get away without our 4 kids, but we did it with the help of all the Hams in Toronto and Robert and Lindsay back in Arizona, who watched J for 10 days!! Then we came back home to the sweltering heat, but Chris got a schedule change so we were seeing more of his beautiful face at home. We managed to see my parents again for a weekend in Las Vegas while J stayed with Wes and Kim. Shortly after that, J went back home to be with her family (you can read about that here) and we decided to take a month break from foster care to regroup and rejuvenate. Even though I ended up in the ER after I threw out my back a week after she left, I was feeling so great! Having three kids can be hard, but having four kids, can be really hard- especially when one of them is a toddler and toddlers are not your jam. So after J went home, having only 3 kids felt like a dream.

Then fall continued on this dreamy high- I won an all-expense paid trip to New York through Wendy's Lookbook, Marissa Webb, and Banana Republic. IT WAS THE BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!! If for some reason you missed out on that fabulous chapter of my life, you can read about it here, here, here, or just click on the labels that say 'jihae does NYFW15'. This was also made possible with the village of people who helped out with the three kids. My friends and family are seriously SO INCREDIBLE!!! The day after I got back from New York, we went back on the list to get a foster baby (ONLY a foster baby! no more toddlers!) and we got one. A sweet little guy that was 2 weeks old. And then he left the next day. That was fast and crazy, and another unexpected blessing. (You can read about it here.) Our newest little guy, who is our third foster child, is still with us. He goes by W here on the blog, and he is a magical little being. We looooooooooooooove having a baby in the house again! And we adore him specifically. Then Chris went on a mission trip to Israel, which was an incredible, and beautiful experience. One of the biggest blessings of that trip was seeing God provide for the funding of that trip. Chris had to raise $3,800 and was very worried before the trip about how he would raise that. But as I mentioned before, our community is an incredible and generous one, and so Chris ended up raising more than $5,000, which helped some of his teammates out quite a bit too. Thanks to all who were part of this miracle and gave so very very generously! The day after Chris got back from Israel, he started at his new position as a sergeant at the police academy. This means he works normal hours during the week! We get to hang out EVERY WEEKEND! Together! As a family! It's the best!!!!!

 And now winter is back, but so very different from the winter we started off with. We are a family of six again, but a sane, and stable family of six. Mia turned 4 in November and is just so much fun to be around! Unless she's being crazy and having a tantrum. But otherwise she is so delightful and enjoys playing with Playdoh, Barbies, and Peppa Pig. Lily often plays with her and it brings my heart so much joy to see these sweet sisters playing together even though there is a 4.5 year gap between them. Speaking of sisters- I finally saw mine again! Jeehon and her family had been stationed in Singapore since August of 2014, so I didn't see them for over a year! So just this last week we all went to Las Vegas to celebrate Christmas (such an appropriate place to celebrate the birth of Christ our Saviour!) with The Malloys and my parents and my brother's family. It was so great for all 7 Ham cousins to be together, and everyone got to meet W and love on him too. I met my nephew Sunjae (yes that's Topher's Korean name too, but they are spelled differently in Korean, and therefore mean different things.) for the first time, and my heart feels complete and full having spent a whole week with my family.

Chris and I have been married for 10 years now and we are so thankful for this last decade together. It's had some downs, and lots of ups. I was looking through our wedding pictures recently and came across our wedding invitation which had our verse on it:

"A cord of three strands is not quickly broken." (Ecc 4:12)

 No matter the season, we are so thankful for God's provision, mercy, love, and grace. He has protected us from much, and saved us from more. As we wrap up another year, we are always amazed at the people who are standing around us, supporting us in all that we do. Thanks for walking through 2015 with us.







thanks Barb for taking these great pictures in your beautiful backyard!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

The Stuggle is Over!

Mia.

Oh my sweet, precious, last born. She is so crazy I don't even know where to begin with her!

I am going to be completely honest with you for a second here. I started this struggle series a few weeks ago, because something happened that I was VERY embarrassed about. And I didn't want to talk about it with others, because it was so embarrassing. But then I remembered that people have honestly actually come up to me and told me that my life looks perfect, and I realized I needed to be much more open about my struggles. I don't lie about stuff here on this blog, nor do I intentionally try to dupe anyone into thinking that my life is too good to be true. Did you read my posts about my first foster placement? I was a pretty serious disaster back then. And, oh wait. I still am today. I don't know how people could ever get the perception of perfection from looking at me, but I am here to proclaim that I am very mediocre and I am ok with that!

So, back to Mia. And my embarrassment. Mia just turned 4 last week. Two weeks ago? And even though she honestly potty trained herself at about 20 months of age (bless those older siblings of hers that I have been whining about!) she has not been able to sleep without a Pull-Up. She's FOUR. The diaper industry has been robbing me blind for almost 8 consecutive years!

I am realizing more and more that children's bladders are like snowflakes- not a single one of them is the same. Lily was successfully potty trained by her third birthday. But we had two VERY unsuccessful, and one VERY TRAUMATIC attempts before that glorious day that she no longer needed a diaper. She night trained herself within two or three days and the poop training took a bit longer, with the help of lots of Miralax and lots of prayers. Topher was potty trained before he was two, but he wasn't night trained until he was about three. His bladder was pretty small so he had a lot of accidents compared to Lily who had hardly any. Then Mia was on the same track as her brother, but then eclipsed the time that she required to become night trained.

I tried so many things with her: making sure she didn't drink anything after 6:30pm (she goes to bed at about 8), waking her up in the middle of the night to pee, making her do bikram yoga before bed so that she had no moisture left in her body... Just kidding. We really did try to bribe her with clothes, toys, and candy. But nothing worked. Do you know why? Cause her bladder is a snowflake. It wasn't and isn't like anyone elses. I was SO PROUD of her early potty training accomplishment, even though I know I truly had nothing to do with it. But then I was so embarrassed about her inability to stop peeing at night, even though I HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH IT!

Parents who are trying to potty train your babes: Relax. Don't compare your kid to any other kid.
There's no point. Your kid is a snowflake.

I started writing this post over two weeks ago. And miraculously enough- MIA NO LONGER WEARS A PULL UP TO BED! She had a week of waking up dry then wet every other night for about a week. And then her bladder decided to pull up it's big girl panties one day and the flood gates were closed! It has been so wonderful! And I am so happy for Mia and myself. So the struggle is OVER! I WON THE POTTY TRAINING WAR!!!!! Even though I had nothing to do with it.                        

Friday, November 6, 2015

The Struggle is Still Real. Part 2.

Sorry I lied folks. I said I would whine about Topher "tomorrow" but tomorrow was yesterday and yesterday was too busy and I died of tiredness when we got home. Even though it's about the same time now as it was when I died yesterday- I am not tired now. This is due entirely to the fact that I had my VERY FIRST eggnog latte of the year and I was so beyond ecstatic while I was ordering it, that I forgot to ask them to make it a decaf. See? The struggle. Daily. Really.

Anyhow, I have been having a hard time with Topher lately. I am not entirely sure why, but it has  a lot to do with my lack of patience for him, and his insane, amazing, yet annoying obsession with ORIGAMI.

Topher's brain is on a level that my little brain will never rise to. It can't. I'm an old dog. I have got no new tricks! Topher's favorite thing to do is to watch YouTube videos on how to make different origami creations. Not just a paper frog, crane, guinea pig (though that would be impressive)- but like crazy things that move to transform from one thing to a different thing, like modular origami transforming ninja stars. Out of Post-It notes. And he watches the video one time, makes the thing, and then just keeps making more and more things.

It's fantastic and insane. We have little scraps of paper EVERYWHERE. And pieces of papers that have been folded, and refolded, and folded over again and again, all over the place. It's maddening. And then when I try to tell my precious son that he needs to put his stuff away, clean up after himself, please don't leave the scissors lying around, he cops this attitude out of nowhere and lays on this strange guilt trip- 'Fine. I'll just throw all my origami creations in the garbage. You hate them all.' What? I just told you to pick up the scissors so your sister doesn't cut her hair off. Even though it looks like his sister has already cut a lot of her hair off...

I don't have an awesome parenting moment that follows Topher's dramatic monologues. I am often at a loss for words and compassion because I have no idea why he says that crap All the Time. I guess for attention (that's the #1 go-to answer for parents, isn't it?) I know I need to try harder. And as I type that, I know that I don't need to try harder- I need to humble myself more often as a parent, and be filled with the Holy Spirit, because only with Him, am I actually, genuinely, able to be loving, joyful, peaceful, patient,  kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled.

Ugh. Letting it all soak in. For me. Not for you. Surely you don't struggle with this kind of nonsense...

Anyway before I drown my sorrows in a glass of whine (haha!), I leave you with Topher's third, and most recent draft of his Christmas letter to Santa this year:

"Dear Santa for Christmas I want these 4 objects. can I have looooooooooooooooootts of jumbo packs of origami paper and normal paper (some of it colored paper). "Origami Ooh-la-la" by Jeremy Shafer; "Origami to Astonish and Amuse" also by Jeremy Shafer. Please and Thank you.
Sincerely, Topher."

If anyone actually knows Jeremey Shafer, holla. Topher wants him to come to his birthday party.


Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The struggle is really real. Part 1

Coming back to real life and my first 'mom post' since all my New York posts, I thought I would share with you all the magical things that we've been struggling with over here in our neck of the woods.

Lily: Last week was a ROUGH week for our eldest. For some reason The Indian in the Cupboard was causing us all a lot of strife. This book is her book for the 'Book Club' (reading group) that she is in for her class. We bought the book at Barnes and Noble the day before she was supposed to have it at school, and then it was all down hill from there. Book Club is on Thursdays. They are supposed to read three chapters a week and answer a few questions. Lily took her book to school on Monday. And left it there. But she said she had finished chapter one, so I didn't need to worry.

Then Tuesday happened, and I told her to bring the book to the living room so that we could read it together. She wasn't coming, and when I found her she was sitting at the kitchen table with her school binder open. I looked at her and said "you forgot your book at school again, didn't you?" and then she started to sob. And like the awesome, compassionate mother that I am, I walked away. Cause I knew it wouldn't help to shake her. (See? Compassion!... or something...)

Then Wednesday came, and Chris and I were going out. Which is why I wanted to read with her on Monday and Tuesday! The babysitter came and I told her that Lily had to finish reading up to chapter 3 in order to do ANYTHING that night, besides eating dinner. For some unknown, insane reason, it took her TWO AND A HALF HOURS to read two chapters.

THEN came Thursday. The day of her Book Club. I was so proud of her for finishing her assignment and being ready for Book Club. Until I walked into the dining room at 10am to see The Indian in the frickin Cupboard sitting on the dining room table. I nearly lost my mind. No. I did lose my mind. I e-mailed her teacher and asked if they did Book Club in the morning or afternoon and that I would bring the book straightaway if Lily's group hadn't already met. And of course they already had. But her teacher said she did great and not to worry.

You'd think that would be the end of our trials and tribulations since Book Club already happened and we survived it. But no.

CAUSE THEN FRIDAY happened. And Lily dressed up like the cowboy from this fantastic book that has been terrorizing my life, and she even made an INCREDIBLE pumpkin that had an indian behind some cupboard doors. it was seriously a piece of art. So she had that, and her book, and she showed it off at her literary parade. AND THEN SHE LEFT THE BOOK AT SCHOOL!!!!!!!!!!!!! On the lunch table. Outside. I called the school at 3:30. Janet, the front desk admin, picked up the phone, heard my sob story, looked everywhere, including all the garbage cans outside, and the lost and found, and saw no pumpkin, and no book. For the love people. And then at 6:00pm- on a FRIDAY- Janet, my most favoritest person in the world, called me back. In fact, like a sleuth, had to go through and try to find my phone number on her phone cause she remembered that I called around 3:30, and told me she had found the pumpkin, and the book, and also Lily's watch, which happened to be in the bag with the other two prized possessions. I am going to see who I need to call to nominate Janet for some kind of Nobel Peace Prize. Lily is alive, doing great, and we have enjoyed reading the next three chapters together very much.

Sometimes people say our life looks pretty perfect. It's not! See? The struggle is real.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

#jihaedidnewyork. only a month ago!


I just straight up stole that image from Wendy's Lookbook. I don't have my phone near me and I can't get all my pics on the computer properly. You'd seriously think I was 75 or something with my absolute lack of technological savvy.

That bottom right pic is of Marissa, Wendy and I at the end of the Banana Republic presentation that I went to on Saturday, Day 3 of my awesome NYFW extravaganza.


I started off the day with this gorgeous beaut once again:


We brunched at La Petite Abeille, which is the first place I went to with Wendy and Nina. I can't remember what my friend got, but I had these potato pancake things (like a rosti) with smoked salmon and sour cream. Oh it was so delicious! My mouth was so happy the WHOLE trip!!!!

After brunch, we walked around. I had to find a gift for my girls, cause I still hadn't done that. We went to an adorable book store, which was on like 17th or 18th Street, and I saw Eva Chen. I didn't stop her, cause she was with her daughter and another lady. But I was kind of starstruck and regret not saying Hi. Eva Chen used to be the Editor of Lucky Magazine, but has recently become the fashion person at Instagram. I'm really letting my weird stalker side show, eh?

My friend and I went to a few stores, she bought a ton of sweet books for my kids, and then we parted ways. I hope I see her again sooner than later. I reminded her that though the desert is terrible in the summer, it is like heaven on earth in the winter. And I should also take a minute to thank the incredible people who watched my kids while I played and Chris worked. I was gone 4 nights and my kids slept in 4 different homes! Thanks a million Lindsay, Christin, Carrie, and Grace for watching, entertaining, feeding, and loving my kids!!!!!!

I met up with Wendy and Nina for lunch, I don't remember what the place was called but it was delicious, and it was right across the street from Banana republic's flagship store on 5th Ave. Then we went over there and I watched Wendy take a bunch of pics for Banana's Instagram. I seriously just loved watching these women work! And even in the middle of working it, women would stop Wendy, and tell her how much they loved her, I would take their pictures, and Wendy would just stop and chat and get to know her fans a little better. She is seriously just so dang NICE.

After loitering at the store for a while longer, we hoped into a cab and made it down to Banana's Spring/Summer 2016 presentation. (Word to the wise: save up some extra spending money for some fun-colored, gorgeously tailored pieces from Banana next spring!) We were there about an hour before everything started and it was just COOL watching everything transpire. Marissa was there telling the models what to do. There were tons of press photographers getting their shots before the 'public' (I don't actually know how you get into these things...) came in. And when it was time for the press photographers to go- it was time for them to go! I saw a couple of them hide their cameras and just stay in the room. the difference between the Banana presentation and Marissa's runway show was that Marissa's models walked and the Banana models pretty much stood in place. But beautiful clothes were present at both shows, and I feel like my first (only? last?) Fashion Week experience was an eventful and mesmerizing one!

 That night we went out with Wendy's beautiful friends and we ate, talked about life, and a bit about clothes, and our families, and traveling. I was sitting at the cool kids' table and I was loving it. I will probably never see these delightful people again (except in my Instagram feed) but I am so glad our paths crossed and I got to meet some fantastically fashionable professionals who are living their dreams.

I said bye to Wendy and Nina at the hotel, and we made promises to see each other again. They only live an hour plane ride away, or a fun 6 hour car ride (which I actually love driving), so I hope to see these two again. We have texted and will emoji the crap out of each other on Instagram. It's not a traditional friendship, but it seems as though more and more friendships and relationships blossom over the interweb nowadays, so maybe I now have a 'currently traditional' relationship with these women.

The plane ride home was an excellent one, since I got to sit in the aisle and got up to pee three times without bothering anyone. Sitting in the window seat on my way to New York- I held it for five hours. I think that's some kind of personal record for me. I was afraid of terrorism, or mechanical malfunctions that might prevent me from getting home to see my beautiful family AND from letting me enjoy all the new, beautiful, wonderful things I had gotten on my trip, so I prayed fervently to get home safely, hoping that the fact that my priorities were straight (though just barely) would save me.

It's now been over a month since that crazy weekend in September, that I vowed I would never forget but am already feeling foggy on some of the details (what did I eat for lunch on Saturday before we went to Banana again? How did I not take more pictures? Why is my memory so terrible?) So, even if my tales have already grown tiresome to you, and just barely interesting. I needed this post more than you did! And with that- we now return you to your regularly scheduled programming of mothering, living unglamorously, though exceedingly blessedly, and suddenly a bit more stylishly.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Shopping spreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have never been on a shopping spree before in my life.

The closest I have ever come to going on one was two years ago, when I went shopping with my parents and sister in Las Vegas, and my dad was feeling super generous so he bought my sister and I new shoes and some clothes. It was so very fun, unexpected, wonderful, and a memory I will treasure forever.

But. That was my dad's money. He works a lot and hard. I got some $30 shoes and probably $50 worth of clothes. So great. Cause you know I know how to get a bang for my buck! But, I wouldn't call that a real shopping spree.

When I heard I won this contest, and that there was a SHOPPING SPREE AT BANANA REPUBLIC involved, I nearly lost my mind. as did those who were nearest and dearest to me. there was lots of speculation and hopes and reality, but when it came down to it- I had no idea what to expect. Even while it was happening!

So, day two of my incredible NYFW extravaganza started off with me meeting a dear friend who I went to high school and university with. somehow, even with those two major educational similarities- we veered way the heck away from one another after our post secondary education. I moved to Korea, and taught, and eventually got married and had a crap ton of kids. My sweet friend decided to go to Harvard Law and is now a pretty incredible lawyer in New York. I hadn't seen her since she came to my wedding ten years ago!

We met for breakfast at this little place called The Grey Dog Café. It was delicious. And once again- it was a novel treat to eat my food while it was hot and fresh! Eating with no kids and one incredible adult who never needed my assistance with anything was such a great start to this amazing day!


And then my important lawyer friend had to go and lawyer it up, so I went walking around, and waited til it was time to meet up with Wendy for my shopping spreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!

When the magic moment had arrived, Wendy and I walked into the flagship Banana Republic store on 5th Ave, and Sarah and Amy were there waiting for us. Sarah and Amy are my new heroes because they were the ones who arranged all of my flights and hotel stay and other major wonderful details of my trip, cause they work for Gap Inc. (I'm positive. Cause I google stalked them so hard.)

Wendy asked if I minded if she styled me today and I said OF COURSE NOT! who would not want to be styled by Wendy of Wendy's Lookbook?!?!? So, we waked around the store and seriously just started grabbing things. Not Walmart-Black-Friday style grabbing. A slow, intentional, and thoughtful grabbing of clothes that I would never have dreamed of owning!! Wendy grabbed stuff I never would have picked, I grabbed stuff that I knew I was going to get whether Wendy liked it or not (I don't know if she ever just wears plain cotton shirts...) And then we went to the dressing rooms.
Or MY dressing room.


Yes. Amy and Sarah sectioned off the largest dressing room for me, and even had a little velvet rope sectioning off my party area. How do I not have pictures of that? I guess I was too damn excited people! They had juice and champagne- there was no end to the awesomeness!

And then I tried on The Stuff. I started with a little black dress that Wendy picked out that I NEVER would have picked. It was form fitting but not skin tight. And it was incredible cause I have no figure. No, I have the figure of a 12 year old boy. And after a large meal, I actually look like a malnourished child- flat on top, distended belly. It ain't pretty. But this dress! This dress made me look like a lady.

Wendy had also picked out a ton of outer pieces like a blazer type vest- Marissa Webb inspired, some sporty looking vest type thing, an actual blazer (that fit like a friggin glove!), and I picked some cardigans (cause I cannot live without cardigans.) We mixed and matched things and it was the most fun I had ever had in a store. EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


HAPPINESS PERSONIFIED!

The clothes we started out with...

Me. Drunken with material joy.

And then it was all over. I tried everything on. Said no to some stuff. Said HECK YES to everything else. And then Amy and Sarah took my stuff and had it sent to my hotel. Thank you ladies for not over looking one single detail! And thank you Marissa Webb for making Banana Republic a store that I want to shop at again!
The shopping spree was over, but the greatness of my day was not. We went to High Tea at Bergdorf Goodmans. It was all kinds of crazy fancy. We had yummy tea, wine, adorable finger sandwiches, scones, and dessert things. Magnifique!


While we were at High Tea (we were supposed to get there at 4, we got there closer to 5:30) Wendy made reservations for dinner at this amazing restaurant with the unfortunate name of 'Quality Meats'. Kind of made me think of 'The Dress Barn', which is apparently trying to make a fashion comeback- which will take some Herculean efforts due to that name (maybe they would succeed if they changed the name of the store.) Our meal there was outstanding (the meat was top quality! they weren't lying!) But between our late lunch and our very late dinner- I watched Wendy do some shopping. And that was also lots of fun. Except that I was wearing heels. And I don't remember the last time I wore heels for that long.

After dinner, we got back to our hotel at about 11pm. Nina turned in to do some work, and then Wendy and I went to get foot massages. I don't particularly like it when other people are touching me, but I did want to saw my feet off with a butter knife after walking around in heels all night- so I agreed to the foot massage. Wendy and I had a great time chatting about life, and love and love languages. Our talking spilled past our time at the massage place, so we hung out in the lounge of our hotel til about 1am. We laughed, we cried. Maybe we did become blood sisters in that hotel lounge after all...

I was pretty exhausted after I got to my room. But my adrenaline was pumping again when I opened up all my bags!!!!!

Here's some of the stuff I got...

And here is a less glamourous shot (cause it's in my bedroom in my house. I need new and fancier bedding!!!!) A ton of people have asked me how much stuff I got from my shopping spree, so I will give you a run down:
-two pairs of jeans (both ripped!)
-a pair of pants
-two dresses
-a sweater/dress
-two long sleeve tees
-a tank top
-the cute glasses t-shirt you've seen me in at least a dozen times by now
-the smart cookie sweatshirt (one of my fave items!)
-a long cardigan
-a blazer, a sleeveless blazer, and that sporty vesty thing I was talking about
-a pink moto jacket (Wendy's pick! I do love it though I never would have picked it.)
-an awesome jean jacket that actually fits me well
-a super cute black skirt (the striped thing next to the jeans)
-two belts, a ring, and some bracelets

basically I made out like a bandit!

THANKS AGAIN BANANA REPUBLIC!
I no longer look like a run down clearance rack monger.
And my husband thanks you ;)