Friday, February 25, 2011

Playing Dress Up: A Giveaway ♥♥♥

Hey, I'm a girl, and we
like to play dress-up.

~Charlize Theron

Hello, sweet friends!

It's Friday and I feel
like playing dress up, today.
Forget the mukluks, parkas,
scarves and mittens....
I'm dreaming about sunny
skies and warm breezes and

LOOK what's in my 
dress-up trunk.....

Wanna play?

Sorry girls, 
this one is MINE : )
{Seriously, I just ordered it!}

I was over the moon to
discover the loveliest
on-line boutique this week 
called Shabby Apple 
and I want to share
my find with YOU!

My friend Becky would rock this dress!
The Mauna Kea.
As if the dresses weren't
enough to love, I love 
the story behind the company
even more. 

Old friends Emily and CK 
started in 2006 
after feeling frustrated at the 
lack of dresses on the market that
could be worn without needing
a tank, a cardigan, a long slip
or leggings to make them 
comfortably wearable.

{This becomes even more
challenging as you get older!}

Black Trench Coat Dress
 My mom would make this sing : )
After visiting trade shows and 
design studios {CK lives nine 
blocks from where NY Fashion
Week shows are held!} and finding
that designers weren't designing
their kind of dresses, they decided 
to encourage new fashion designers 
to create the type of designs that
 they were looking for.  Their
Emerging Designer Program is
unique to the retail industry.

She reminds me of my cousin's fiancĂ©e....
I'd wear this with little white Keds!

They also decided that a business
that helps women look beautiful
could also help women around
the world overcome poverty and 
provide a better life for their children.
Shabby Apple donates 5% of
its net sales to Unitus, which makes
micro-credit loans to women in
developing countries who want
to start a business.

Shabby Apple offers yummy,
wonderful for work, play, evenings
out and everything in between.  
CK loves to travel and incorporates
colors and shapes from other cultures
into designs for the various SA collections.
She also likes to feel like a woman,
and draws her ideas from antique
clothing.  She and Emily used to love
watching old movies together and
talking about the fashions they saw!
There is something for all ages,
from little girls to those well-seasoned.

My daughter would look sweet in this!

Each collection has its 
own story {love that, too!} 
and cool names such as

south pacific
oh la la
the silk road
all that jazz

Perfect for my sister-in-law, due in May : )
Even though they are new to me,
Shabby Apple clothing and accessories
have been featured on The Today Show, 
on-line at AOL and Daily Candy, and in 
Glamour, Southern Living, USA Today, 
Teen Vogue, People, Lucky, Self and 
Marie Claire, to name a few.  They have 
also been featured on numerous websites 
and blogs,  now including Privet and Holly : )

My niece would kick up her heels in this!
Shabby Apple has dresses for all shapes, 
sizes and ages.  I used the website's option
to Shop by Body Type.  After answering
three simple questions, I was given dress
choices based on my body type.  I have 
to say that I was wowed by all 
of the recommendations!

One of my favorites.

So that you can join in on the dress-up
fun, Shabby Apple is giving away one
of these three beautiful dresses to a
lucky Privet and Holly reader and a
10% off coupon code for everyone
at the end of this post!
Happy Talk {yellow} or North Shore {jade}

Nine to Five {green} or Five to Nine {black}


Amethyst {plum} or Azure Coast {blue}
What do you need to do to win?

First, be a Privet and Holly follower.
Then, simply check out Shabby Apple's
 dresses, here, and tell me
which collection speaks to you....
as well as which dress you would
choose should your name be drawn.

For extra chances {leave each in
a separate comment 
to increase your odds!}:

1.  Follow Shabby Apple on Facebook or Twitter
2.  Follow Privet and Holly on Twitter and 
Tweet about the Dress-up Giveaway : )

I will select a winner using
on Friday, March 4th.  The dress giveaway
is open to readers with a U.S. address.

Don't want to wait?
Start shopping with this
10% discount coupon, now: 

Can you tell that I am loving 
this special little company?

Thanks for playing dress-up with me.
You looked fabulous
 in everything you tried on!

Good luck.



Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Farewells: Ten for Tuesday


Welcome to the last post
 of Ten for Tuesdays.
For those of you just
joining me, I have been
writing about my Intro
to Digital Photography
class and sharing my
homework assignment,
each week.


For those of you who
aren't really interested in
photography tips, thank
you for reading, anyway!
It has been so helpful
for me to review the 
concepts in each week's
lesson by creating these
posts and I am very
grateful to those that
of you who left me such
encouraging comments.

I love this blogging world!


The assignment for our 
last week was to take
pictures that you could
use to make a card that
you would send to a
friend to celebrate the
end of winter.


We could use text, but
our teacher said that it
would need to be considered
in the overall composition,
meaning there needed to
be space for the text.

Ironically, I'd received a set 
of beautiful photo note cards
in the mail the day before
class from sweet Kat at
Low Tide, High Style, who
has started selling them 
  in her etsy shop.

Such a talented photographer!
So, armed with inspiration
from Kat and buoyed up 
by temps that flirted with
the high 40's last week,
I set out to capture images 
that showed my longing for 
spring and my intent to wish 
winter adios!


I did add text to a few
of the images; my next
frontier is going to be
learning about and playing
with textures.

My sweet mom was here last
week, helping me get a
few projects finished.  As
a thank you, I am going
to have a set of photo cards
made up for her.
Spring in several languages : )
I am also going to order
three more sets for three
Privet and Holly readers.
Simply leave me a
comment, letting me
know which image you
would like to have as 
as set of note cards.
I'll use and
select the recipients
over the weekend.

Comically, we woke up
to an additional 17 inches
of snow yesterday.  Mother
Nature has a funny sense
of humor....
{Taken BEFORE the storm!}
Farewell, winter!
Farewell, Ten for Tuesday.


Linking up here : )

Friday, February 18, 2011

Pass It On

October 2010

My name is Suzanne
and I'm a recovered
news addict.

September 11, 2001
caught me off guard.
I was bustling around,
getting my first-grader
ready for the bus and
my toddler fed that
fateful morning when
the telephone rang.

My husband was in
Chicago on business
and told me to turn on
the television.
{via Maciek R. on Flickr}
He shared the last rental
car out of downtown
Chicago that day,
which he rented in
the shadow of the
Sear's Tower.  I
remember praying
that Chicago wasn't
on the terrorists' radar.

Had he not called me,
I would have kissed
my daughter good-bye
and waved to the bus,
with strains from a song
from PBS Kids in the background;
music to our morning.

September 2001

An ordinary day.

But as you know, this
was not an ordinary day.

Thus began my addiction
to the news stations on
TV and on the radio.  I was
afraid that if I wasn't
clued in at all times, that I
would miss something
critical like I did the morning
of September 11th.

{via Zeetz Jones on Flickr}

But the problem with most
of our media outlets is this:
They mainly report bad news.
And that gets in your head
and in your heart and like
the cloud over the Peanut's
character, Pigpen, it can
envelope you.

So, I made a conscious decision
last spring to scale way, way
back on my news viewing 
and listening.....And to seek
out sources that would tell
the other stories....the good news
that exists in our world.

About the same time, I started
to notice public service announcements
and billboards from an organization called
 The Foundation for a Better Life.

Completely endowed by the private
funds of a philanthropist, The Foundation
has this as it's mission statement:

The Foundation for a Better Life
began as a simple idea to promote
positive values.  We believe that
people are basically good and just
need a reminder.  And that the values
we live by are worth more when we
pass them on.

I love that.  

The Foundation's award-winning
Pass It On TV spots almost always
make me cry, even though I've
seen many of them numerous times
over the last year!

Click image to watch

Their Pass It On 
billboards are equally
warm and thought-provoking.

Focusing on positive values, The
Foundation's website,,
began with a brief list of good
values and has grown to over
75.  Radio messages, podcasts
and quotes and stories related
to values can be found on the
website in ten different languages.

There is even a section called
Good News that links to positive
newspaper and magazine stories
across the USA and the world.

I don't know about you, but
for me, this is the kind of thing
that I want to focus on and
bring more of into my life.

The Foundation for a Better
Life does not accept donations.  
They simply ask that you 
exemplify positive values that 
can be passed on to others.

How cool is that?

I'm adding The Foundation's
link to my sidebar, where
their quote of the day will
be shown, each day.  You
can also sign up to have the
quote of the day e-mailed
to you, here.

I want to keep
accentuating positive
values as I make my
way through each
day.  The words from
the values list that sang
to me were


Will  you  join me in 
passing on positive
values that speak to 
your heart?

I'd love to know
which ones you'd

Those who wish to sing,
always find a song.
~ Swedish Proverb

Happy weekend,
sweet friends!


Flickr {click pics for more};
The Foundation for a Better Life