DAR Spring Awards Luncheon

DAR spring awards 2019Friday, May 10th I attended the annual Lady Washington Chapter, NSDAR Spring Awards Luncheon.  The Daughter’s of the American Revolution is a very special organization of women paying tribute to their American patriot forefathers.  Some members are traced back to their ancestors who arrived to America on The Mayflower! This event honored all of the fine women who have provided great service to the group on a multitude of levels.  A special congratulations to all of them and their accomplishments!

The luncheon opened up with the DAR ritual, followed  by The American’s Creed, then The Pledge of Allegiance to the Texas Flag. I love the patriotism in the group.  I also love to be reminded of the amazing privilege we have to be an American citizen and to love God and Country.

Besides fancy hats, outfits, a lovely meal, and good conversation, we were greeted by our guest speaker Lynn Forney Young, the Honorary President General of NSDAR, the Honorary State Regent of Texas, and the United States Semiquincentennial Commission.  She shared wonderful stories of our great American history, women’s influence throughout the years in legislation, and provided a real-life update on the political life in Washington today.  Believe me, this group of women on a national level truly makes a difference in the United States!  If you ever get the chance, visit the DAR building in Washington D.C.  If you love ancestry, this is one of the richest archives in America!

Galante Wine Gang

galanteOur trip to Carmel By The Sea would certainly not be complete unless we did some wine tasting! California does produce some of my favorite wines.  I was born in CA so perhaps their grapes are in my bloodline? LOL.

There are wine rooms on every block in this town.  We took a stroll into the Galante Vineyards tasting room.  There was a good social echo coming out of their propped open door.  It sounded inviting, so we literally followed the vibe thinking, we’ll just pop in for a minute.  Well, that minute lasted more than an hour and before we knew it, we tasted all kinds of wines from their extensive library, nibbling on cheese and snacks, chatting up the locals, and hanging out with wine guru Jack Galante himself! His family is some of the original founders of Carmel.  They have a deep history here and it was fun to hear his stories.  Did you know that a woman’s high heels is banned in this town?  A funny local law that is still in place but not enforced.  LOL!  Ok, back to the wine.   Our tasting only cost $30 by the way.  Not a bad deal at all!

Continue reading Galante Wine Gang

Carmel By The Sea: “Name That House”

Scenic Road
Scenic Road

My recent trip to Carmel, California was a real sea breeze treat!  Besides losing power at our highlands resort for 1.5 days due to bad weather, the stunning scenery was magical.  We even caught a glimpse of a rainbow a time or two!

The realtor in me had to take a road trip to Carmel By The Sea to check out some Pacific Coast real estate! Sotheby’s has an office in Carmel and Monterrey so I can help you with your RE needs here if you are looking, just an FYI!  Alongside Carmel Bay on Scenic Road we drove our rental car up and down and weaved in and out of the adjoining streets.  Look at this house as my main photo for this story!!!  This was by far my favorite.  Unobstructed views for miles out Continue reading Carmel By The Sea: “Name That House”

Besties And Babies!

Baby Schnitzel Houston showerBaby  Schnitzel is one lucky man and he’s not even here yet!  Recently, my blonde mafia besties hosted the most incredible baby shower for us in Houston.  Graciously opening her doors to her fabulous home for 30 women, Lori Bergeron offered the most magical venue for the event.  Add in all of the amazing and personalized decor, food, and hottie friends, this party was a “looker”!

My friend Anna Kaplan quoted, “This is straight out of Town & Country Magazine.”  And, I cannot agree with her more!  Every detail was thoroughly thought out and I really felt like the most special lady alive that day!  I still do actually!

Continue reading Besties And Babies!

Showering Baby Schnitzel!

baby schnitzel CA shower 3My husband and I are very excited to announce that we are having a baby!  After much anticipation “Baby Schnitzel” as we like to call him is due in October of this year.   A lot of love will be surrounding our little guy as he enters this world.  Just recently, our two families joined forces – The Brende’s & The Schmidt’s – in Los Angeles, California for the ultimate couple’s baby shower!  Not without a spectacular sunny day to go along with the picturesque view, the event took place above the Hollywood Hills at my Uncle’s abode.  The same home of the annual Brende Easter Egg & Beer Hunt, in fact.

Continue reading Showering Baby Schnitzel!

Canadian Salad Makes Its Way To Houston!

poutineJuly 1st was Canada Day.  In honour of  Canada’s birthday my husband and I set off on a journey to find a Canadian food specialty called “poutine”.  Believe it or not, it is no easy find in this melting pot of a city with over 4 million people!  Fortunately, there is help on the way!  Let me introduce you to Houston’s newest restaurant in the thriving Energy Corridor called Tubs Poutine!

Brother-sister duo Brian and Caroline Nguyen along with chef guru Lyle Mathes are the first to open a poutine only restaurant right here in Houston.  Barely 1-month old, this restaurant is creating a crowd who loves food with a heart, comfort for the soul, and a casual friendly atmosphere which gets you to saying all is “Eh-OK” in this world!  Brian’s world travels to Toronto, Canada inspired him to bring this cuisine back to Texas. Fortunate for him, his sister Caroline is a veteran in the food and hospitality industry and chef Lyle has cooked for the Jimmy Kimmel show, the Houston Rockets, the New England Patriots, American Idol and the Los Angeles Lakers….just to name a few!  Even cuter to the story, “Tubs” is the nickname of Brian’s son.

Continue reading Canadian Salad Makes Its Way To Houston!

Forty, Fabulous, and Preggars!

"Baby Schnitzel On Board"!!!
“Baby Schnitzel On Board”!!!

There are many milestones in our lives, in my case, I had to combine two at once!  I recently hosted my 40th Birthday party with my besties, but what they did not know is that I was 15 weeks pregnant! A very hard secret to keep when my social life involves champagne!  Not to mention, hiding a 3-month baby bump!

Pink and blue was my color scheme and a spring patio setting was important to me.  The perfect venue for a Sunday afternoon was A’Bouzy….a champagne bar and restaurant in the oh-so-fancy River Oaks neighborhood! My spread included fresh floral arrangements, charcuterie board and lite bites, Sprinkles mini cupcakes

"Blonde Mafia"
“Blonde Mafia”

(some gluten free), and flowing champagne!  I wanted my guests to be bubbled up with sugar and sweets for our very special announcement!

I got married at 37-years old, so having a “Baby Schnitzel” as we are calling our little bundle, is truly a blessing!  Honestly, the thought of being a mother grew with me in time.  When I was in my 20’s-early 30’s, I just wanted to work hard and play hard!  Today, I still enjoy of that but my priorities have shifted.  I love being married and motherhood is my next natural progression.  I cannot wait!!!

Continue reading Forty, Fabulous, and Preggars!

Lilly Loves Texas!

lilly pulitzer mom michelle me and artist charlotte munyardWho does not love the brand Lilly Pulitzer?  The resort wear and color schemes they offer just makes me smile!  In fact, it’s my mother’s favorite, truly!  In April, my mom came to Houston for a visit and what better place than to take her to her favorite store in Highland Village?  Coincidentally, the boutique had a featured artist that day custom painting clutches and totes!

Sipping bubbly, enjoying lite bites, and shopping, what a combination!  My sister joined in the fun too.  It was the perfect girls’ family outing!

Introducing the one-of-a-kind Lilly Pulitzer "Chako Clutch"!
Introducing the one-of-a-kind Lilly Pulitzer “Chako Clutch”!

A HUGE score, and now dear to my heart, is this custom painted clutch I got of my little fur ball in heaven Chako, let him rest in peace.  The artist captured the spirit of my Persian kitty prince perfectly!  This handbag is by far my most prized possession moving forward and I will wear it close to my heart!  I am so appreciative of this custom creation.

Thank you Lilly Pulitzer for adding a little sunshine into our lives!  Lilly loves Texas and Texas loves Lilly!

If you’d like to visit the Houston store the address is 4035 Westheimer Road or shop online at www.lillypulitzer.com .  See you there, perhaps?

Happy Fondue Year! A Fun Tradition To Get You Through The Holidays!

nye 2017 fondueI love the holidays for so many reasons.  It is this time of year when people amp up their game  BIG TIME with festive decor, cuisine and desserts, music, and all of that shared with quality bonding time with family and friends.

It’s the traditions that fascinate me. In The Schmidt family (my in-laws) for instance, every New Year in Ohio they host a family fondue night.  First off, the natural setting up North is so perfect because it’s cold outside, the fireplace is crackling, we’re all bundled up in sweaters and boots, and this year there was snow which makes it even more magical!  Back to the food, how about hosting a party where your guests are their own chefs?  That’s right, just master the art of gathering and forget the thought of slaving in the kitchen!  That’s why fondue night is such a genius idea.  The fondue fixins are unreal folks and all will forget you did not spend all day and night in the kitchen preparing their meal!  The spread gets more nye 2017 fondue3ambitious every year I think.  Check out this display. Besides the cheese, salivate over the lobster, tuna, yellowtail, shrimp, beef, and oh yeah the veggies!  A new addition to the savory lineup is the ravioli and the truffle tortellini! This tradition takes hours of edible enjoyment and it’s interactive which I love too.  Mix in some German gluehwein to wash it all down or sip some champagne cocktails, laugh and chat a bit, then dive in for seconds, and thirds, nobody is counting!  To finish off the evening with some sweetness, bring on the chocolate with strawberries, pineapple and bananas!  My life is complete!

Continue reading Happy Fondue Year! A Fun Tradition To Get You Through The Holidays!

The Secret Is Out!

TUTS The Secret GardenYou do not need to travel to the Big Apple to experience real life Broadway musicals these days.  Houston is blessed to be home to the Theater Under The Stars at the Hobby Center.  Amazing productions come through the Bayou City.  In fact, my husband and I just recently saw The Secret Garden.  I actually read this book and I love the story-line.  I couldn’t wait to see it and it sure did not disappoint!

A little history, The Secret Garden is a musical based on the 1911 novel of the same name by Frances Hodgson Burnett. The musical’s script and lyrics are by Marsha Norman, with music by Lucy Simon. It premiered on Broadway in 1991 and ran for 709 performances.

The story is set in the early years of the 20th century. Mary Lennox, a young English girl born and raised in the British Raj, is orphaned by a cholera outbreak when she is ten years old. She is sent away from India to Yorkshire, England, to live with relatives whom she has never met. Her own personality blossoms as she and a young gardener bring new life to a neglected garden, as well as to her sickly cousin and uncle.

Continue reading The Secret Is Out!