So I’m high maintenance.

Once, I was in the ladies restroom and I told a friend that she looked very pretty. Her response?

“Oh my gosh, I don’t even have on my lashes.”

You don’t have on your lashes? You mean fake eyelashes? Aren’t those reserved for dance recitals and pageants? Clearly, I was way out of my realm. But, then I thought how amazing her eyes always look and was immediately intrigued. So then I caved.

I ventured to Ulta, my preferred beauty shopping stop. They sell my shampoo by the liter on sale (because a liter lasts about a week with this mane), every OPI and Essie nailpolish color that my heart desires and there is always some sort of gadget or product that catches my eye.

In the “eyelashes” aisle (normally toward the front of the store near the cash register), I found myself perplexed in front of the dozens of sizes, lengths and styles of faux eyelashes. My three criteria for choosing were:

  • Black, normal looking (no feathers, neon colors, sparkles)
  • Semi-natural in appearance (see above, also not 12 inches long)
  • Easy to apply (anti-spaz)

So I chose the Japonesque brand “Sectional” package. It looks lie a full line of fake lashes cut into four pieces. I figured that these would be the easiest to apply because you have smaller sections to mess up. In addition, the glue came in the package, which is a huge bonus. As I experienced in the past, DO NOT USE THE CLEAR GLUE. You will tear out your eyelashes and make your eyelids swell. Use the white glue that you can peel off at the end of the day/night/next morning/I’m not judging/etc.

Choose a set that you feel comfortable using!

Sure you could read the directions on how to put them on, but WHY would you do that when you can read mine?

Pre-step: Put on your eye makeup except mascara including a swipe of eyeliner – i like mine from the center to the edge of my eye.

  1. Un-cap the glue. It is a little difficult (especially after it gets gummy after you open it). Pop out the wand/lid and rest it in the top. Always keep the glue vile upright.
  2. Un-stick the lashes from the white plastic tray. I normally use two sections per eye. If you aren’t a math major, that means un-stick four of them.
  3. Grab the chunk-o-lashes by the LASH part. apply the glue to the base. I like a pretty good amount of glue because I like some security. So sue me.
  4. Close your eye, pull your lashes down and place the lashes on the eyeliner line very close to (but not on top of) the lashline. I put one on the very edge and one one further in from the edge.
  5. Apply as you’d like! Whether you add one, two or four sections per eye, you will look AMAZING! I tend to go for two per eye because it looks the most natural.
  6. Put on your mascara to blend your natural lashes with your new faux friends. You’ll never look back.

Is wearing fake lashes high maintenance? Absolutely. Is it amazing and does everyone want to have them? Duh. So slap on those bad boys and look at the world through a lush black frame – so chic!


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Lazy? Or Genius?

Every Sunday I enjoy coffee and the NYT either before or after going on a jog on the Katy Trail. This morning, I opted for home-brewed coffee; however, without my trusty plastic top from the coffee shop to drink through, I am quite prone to spills. Somehow, the 1.5 feet between my couch and the coffee table is a vortex in which coffee can’t stay in my cup. This is also the case with wine or any other beverage that is not clear.

So what is a girl with beige carpet to do? Well, since necessity is the mother of all invention (thanks, Plato) and my Oxy Clean carpet bill keeps getting higher, I came up with a solution.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you…the COFFEE DRAWER!

Sorry I'm not sorry about this....


Well kids, it’s this or a 25 year old with a sippy cup…

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In Cognito…

On this particularly dark and chilly day (chilly for a Floridian in Texas, but probably paradise for the northeast…), I put on a great Lululemon outfit to go jogging. It ended up being a bit colder than I thought, so I was thrilled to have on a jacket with a hood and long, hand-covering sleeves.

I put up the hood and had on enormous sunglasses, I thought that I may look like a paparazzi-dodging celebrity. As I snickered at everyone in their sweats, long socks and beanies looking like mass murderers, I felt superiorly cute.

In my mind, I looked like this.

Then I got home and looked in the mirror. Instead of looking like a celebrity, I looked like DARTH FREAKING VADER.

I am your father?

I’m thinking I need to find a fleece headband instead. I’ll keep searching…


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The Big Basket

Recently I inherited a Big Basket. As it sat on top of my fridge, where it only looked slightly out of place and held other baskets, trays and coozies, I thought “this would be great for….something.”

Well ladies and gentlemen, the first use for the BB was executed on a dismal rainy Sunday when I ventured to the northern ‘burbs of Dallas to bring my friends and their new sweet (ADORABLE) baby boy lunch! I prepared chicken salad, a romaine and fruit salad and brownies. Of course, the new mommy didn’t need to be doing dishes, so I also packed up light blue and brown napkins and plates as well as serving wares for our lunch.

But where do you put all that stuff so you don’t look like a spaz walking in the door? That’s right. The Big Basket.

The big basket held all of the food (packaged in reusable plastic containers), serving dishes, a gift and a flower arrangement for safe transport up the Tollway.

I could have packed that to the gills, but I also packed a separate bags (with coordinating bows to make it “fancy”) with dinner for S and E. I packed up two servings of frozen gumbo (with the recipe), ready-to-cook rice and everything needed to whip up a salad with minimal effort. For dessert, I stopped by Nothing Bundt Cakes in Preston Royal…these mini treats are perfect for gift bags, birthdays, baby showers or just a girls wine night.

Want your own Big Basket?

I scoured the web for my exact basket. It looks like a few I saw from Target, but the dimensions were still a bit small. Since the key characteristic of the Big Basket is that it is, indeed, HUGE, I found some suitable, affordable options from Target below:

Bonus! Two other storage baskets!

No handles, but a great size!

For now, the BB is back to its home on top of my fridge waiting for its next day out. Any ideas for the BB besides a picnic?

I’ll keep searching…

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Society Bakery-Guess Whoooo?

If you live in Dallas, Society Bakery is hardly a secret. In fact, it has been covered by Daily Candy, US Weekly and Ellen. They are absolutely WONDERFUL and generous…they routinely donate adorable iced cookies to charity goodie bags, sweets to auctions and underwrite area events…a business model that everyone should take after!

A new friend told me about something special she did with Society Bakery, so I’m sharing that find with you (crediting H for the idea!)

Call Society Bakery and order your favorite kind of cake. Let them know that you want a “find out the gender of the baby” (I’m sure there’s a better name for it, but that’s what I said and it worked…) cake. Tell them the design you want on the top  and let them know you’ll bring in the icing color. The sonogram technician writes down the gender of the baby and puts it in an envelope. You drive the envelope over to Society Bakery, and the awesome bakers will put pink or blue icing in the middle of the cake. (Note: this involves not ripping open the envelope, holding it up to the light, cutting open the cake in the car/fridge, “accidentally” dropping it so it busts open or letting your dog eat half of it so you can find out. I say this because this is what I would do.) For dessert (snack, dinner, etc), you  and your hubby, best friends, family or co-workers cut open the cake to find out the gender of the baby!

There are a number of different designs you can choose for the top. I particularly like H’s owl design with the words “Guess Whoooooooo?”

So, we decided to follow this genius plan when M was telling our group of friends the gender of her baby. While M found out with her husband at the doctor’s office, we decided it would be a fun way to share the news with friends! Here were the logistics in case you want to do this with a friend: We (the non mommies-to-be) ordered the owl cake, M called with the color and we picked it up. We had a delicious dinner at Villa O and had the cake for dessert. Before dinner even started, we had to guess; we all chose pink or blue ribbon necklaces (we all chose blue – the mom-to-be wore both!) M sliced open the cake and it was, indeed, blue icing! We are so thrilled to be honorary aunts to a new baby boy! The delicious cake just sweetened the deal 🙂

Society Bakery is never empty, but service is always prompt and with a smile. Society Bakery gains its loyal fans through its charitable donations, and of course, it’s delectable goodies!

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Cold Weather Cuisine

While I normally try to spend minimal time in the kitchen (except when preparing for parties), something about this cold, wet winter is making me want to whip up some winter favorites! I am making big batches of soups and stews so there are plenty of leftovers for lunch…leaving the office is just too dang cold!  What’s been cooking in my kitchen? Bundle up, head to the grocery store and be sure to stock up on leftover dishes!

Holly Clegg Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

DISCLOSURE: CLIENT (and friend!!)

Holly Clegg is a staple in my kitchen. As the mom of one of my closest friends, I have been lucky to taste a few of these recipes cooked by the expert! The recipes are very easy to make and are absolutely delicious. The best part? They are all “trimmed down”…perfect to keep New Year’s resolutions!



  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 green bell peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 10 cups water
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, with juice
  • 3 to 4 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 pound reduced-fat sausage, sliced into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


1. Preheat oven 400ºF. Place flour on baking sheet, bake 20-30 minutes, stirring every 7 minutes, or until the flour is brown (color of pecan shells). This process works well in toaster oven. Set aside.

2. In large, heavy pot coated with nonstick cooking spray, sauté onion, garlic, green peppers, celery until tender. Add browned flour (the roux), stirring constantly.

3. Gradually add water, tomatoes, chicken, thyme, cayenne pepper. Bring to boil, lower heat, and simmer 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until chicken is tender.

4. While gumbo is cooking, brown sausage in skillet or in microwave oven. Add sausa

ge, green onions, Worcestershire sauce to gumbo, cooking 10 more minutes. Skim any fat from surface of the gumbo. Serve over rice.

Makes 10-12 servings

Food Facts

  • Calories 226
  • Protein 33g
  • Carbohydrate 16g
  • Fat 3g
  • Calories from fat 11%
  • Saturated fat 1g
  • Dietary fiber 2g
  • Cholesterol 79mg
  • Sodium 464mg

Chicken Noodle Soup

I am bringing lunch to a friend who just had a baby, and had to boil chicken to make my mom’s famous chicken salad. While I was already dirtying a dish, I threw in a few more chicken breasts to make chicken noodle soup-perfect for eating on the couch after a long day of work! No real recipe needed here…throw 6 chicken breasts and 1 chopped onion into a large pot, cover with water, add a dash of salt and boil for just over an hour! Make sure it doesn’t boil over…

Pull out chicken and pick it off the bone. Meanwhile, boil the chicken stock and cook pasta. Add chicken and serve with peas. I’m warmer already!

White Chicken Chili

My friend J always has great new recipes that I like to re-create. I’m not quite sure where she got this one, but her white chicken chili is TDF!


Melt one stick of butter in a stockpot

Saute one diced onion
Stir in 3/4c. flour – mix well
Add 32oz. chicken broth, 12oz evaporated milk over medium heat while stirring to thicken (the longer, slower, the better – it should get THICK)
Add 2T chili powder, 1T cumin, 1t salt, 1/2t pepper, 3 (or more is better) c. of cooked chicken (I generally pick all the meat off a whole roasted chicken), 15oz. undrained cannellini beans, 4oz diced green chilies.
Stir between each
Simmer 15min
Serve with rice, grated cheese, sour cream, green onions/chives – WHATEVER – that’s the glory of it!

Cooking? Elementary my dear Watson…

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What’s the last name?

Holmes. Like Sherlock.

That was the standard line growing up in the Holmes household.

I’ve always been a gal that has liked to find new things and share those finds with my friends, and thus, the premise of this blog was born! I’ll be “Sherlocking” around Dallas and the webs, sharing my favorite things with you.

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