Monday, February 28, 2011

I've Traded Fashion for Furniture {temporarily!}

OK, OK ... I stole that line from Carrie Bradshaw from the last SATC movie. But, it's been true these last few months of settling into our "home-away-from-home" in NYC. Thanks to the help of some of my very talented and gifted interior design friends and being obsessed with interior design magazines, blogs, the very cool on-line magazine Lonny, and of course the adorable Nate Berkus Show. I have been able to transform our 2 bedroom apartment into a home for 5 {plus the 75 lb. Golden!}. I still have some work to do, but it's getting there. I scored some tickets to the Nate Berkus Show and after being stood up the first time {I'll forgive you, Nate}, I got in on the second try {and VIP treatment}. It was worth it. Loved the show, the experience I shared with my good friend D who drove from Saratoga to join me, and the tips Nate gave us. D and I were good audience participates - clapped, chuckled, cheered all at the appropriate times... It wasn't hard - Nate made it easy!

Grab your popcorn...our show airs today!

Hmmm..... I hope they got my outfit....

Thursday, February 10, 2011

"In New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made..." {Jay-Z}

There's nothing you caaaaan't do now you're in Neeeeew Yoooork"...
I hear my kids singing this along with Jaz-Z as we cross the GW Bridge into Manhattan to start our new life in the city of dreams. The car is packed full with anticipation, anxiousness, excitement, worry {me} oh yeah... and all the necessities {including our 75 lb. Golden Retriever, Ginger}. Luckily we didn't have to bring everything from our 4500 square foot clap board Colonial we left in an idyllic college town to move to a 1200 square foot 2 bedroom apartment on Manhattan's UES. It's exciting! It's adventure! The mood is light, we are all singing to Jay-Z and hoping the best for the next chapter of our lives...

My husband's job changed after the Fall of '08. So did our family life. He started living and working in NYC Monday - Friday. I stayed home and dealt with the kids, the dog, and the house. I started my own shopping blog that highlighted style and trends. I directed readers where to find them locally in our town's amazing shops and boutiques. I hosted shopping events {before Ms. Wintour, I might add}, and did "enhancements" {make-overs}. I had visions of turning it into an on-line magazine for local style mavin's. Who knows - maybe I will some day.This lifestyle of only seeing daddy on the weekends was quickly taking it's toll. We went from a family that ate dinner together every night to barely seeing each other. The week ends weren't long enough. Dad {Peter} wanted to veg out at home while Mom needed to get out and play {without the kids}. It was becoming quite clear that we needed to make a change for the family."Let's move the family to New York! It will be great!! You love New York!!!" Peter exclaimed many times and I had thought to myself. I do love New York. It was worth a try. I jumped into this crazy idea with both feet and started frantically looking into schools for our girls {E - middle school. M and L - elementary school}. That was no easy feat, as anyone knows who has raised children in NYC and tried to get their kids into "good" schools. Which pretty much covers private, parochial or well zoned public schools. With a lot of phone calls, the help of some super moms who advised me on how the system works, trips to the city for tests and more tests, forms to fill out, money to pay, novenas being prayed, and proof of address {people rent studio apartments at $2000/mo just to secure a place in a "good" public school}. Thank the Almighty that we choose an apartment that would fit our family {snuggly} if we did make this change in a highly sought after public school zone.

We could do this. We will do this! We rent our house when we are not using it {always good to own a house in a destination town}, got the kids in good schools, got an apartment on the Upper East Side , everything is set.

That is only just the beginning....

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Opening Day Weekend = Bee..autiful Hats {and a little humor}!

{my track hat by Jennifer Hoertz. She designs whimsical yet stylish hats - I happen to love my flapper style with the cute little bee's flying around. Find one for yourself at Hunt, Ltd. or Barney's New York.

{played my lucky numbers today and WON!}

{my numbers? 6 and 1. And I won $161 on a $2 exacta box - weird - huh?}

{my daughter's favorite hat. It's good not to take yourself or your fashion too seriously. This stylin' lady was clearly having a fun time at the track and letting her personality shine through! Check out the Saratogian to see who wins the hat contest held at the track today}.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

A Classic Summer Look

Blue, White and YellowFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

Blue, White and Yellow by downtownsusiebrown featuring Petit Bateau t shirts

I have always loved navy blue and white together {maybe it goes back to my uniform wearing days?}. So crisp and clean. So Classic. Go French and wear a sailor top {I found a great one at the Gap this week - they have tons of stripes right now}, and skinny jeans {I put dark denim above but white skinny jeans would look amazing as well!}. Or Preppy American - Navy and White Lilly Pulitzer dress {great window at Pink Paddock showing off all their lovely blue and white frocks}, and Jack Rogers {every girl needs a pair of these classic summer sandals found at Stella's or Pink Paddock}. Make the outfit pop with a bright and sunny yellow accessory. This Kate Spade bag is the perfect bag for either outfit. Red lips and red nails and you are ready for the track, polo, the ballet or concert at SPAC, lunch in town, cocktails poolside or wherever your summer plans lead you!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Girlfriends are gifts...

My very good friend, Carolyn, just gave me the above print for our new place in NYC. It is the perfect reminder for me, especially these days. Life {midlife} is NUTS! Marriage, kids, aging parents, getting ready to rent the house for a few weeks of track, setting up the apartment to be our home-away-from-home, worrying about the oil spill, the financial crisis, walking the dog, the heat, new schools for the girls {are they reading enough? are their math skills sharp enough for the competitive nature of NYC? Are they (am I) ready for all of that???}. Plus providing healthy meals, working out, and maintaining a spiritual life is enough to send the most sane person over the edge! I don't even have a full-time job outside the house, and only have 3 kids (I have sisters with as many as 8). So how do we stay sane? By keeping calm and girlfriends. My girlfriends, which include my sisters, are the ones I turn to especially during these times when I am feeling frightened and unsure of myself. They listen. They let me vent, whine, laugh, cry - whatever is needed at that moment. They share a good book, a cup of coffee, a run, or a much needed glass of wine by the end of the day. They make me see the humor and beauty in life and encourage me to take chances. They point out how precious our kids are, how important raising them is even if we may not feel like we are doing it well. So, THANK YOU to all my friends for keeping me calm and allowing me to carry on!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Drive In {the Outfit}

Drive InFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

Drive In by downtownsusiebrown featuring Paige Denim jeans

Best to stay with the retro vibe and who does that better than Kate Spade {top} and Tory Burch {sandals - told you I love 'em}. Can't get too dressed up for the drive-in so I chose to wear them with my Paige Denim boyfriends {from Violet's of Saratoga}. A cardi {J.Crew} is a must when the sun goes down. Don't forget the homemade popcorn {I found re-usable containers in the classic popcorn motif at Target}, bug spray and blankets to snuggle in and on!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Let Summer 2010 Begin!

{made it through all the end-of-the-year craziness. Here is my very stylin' tween on her way to her 5th grade moving up party. Middle school here we come!}

{bff's snuggled up to watch...}

{a movie at Malta Drive-In Theater. A retro, yet very fun way to kick off the summer!}

{a very special treat at Ben and Jerry's to celebrate good report cards...}

{a half Vermonster.... Done!}

How have you kicked off your summer?