Wednesday - Run Away Without Leaving Home

I'm jonesing for the Isle of Palms, y'all....


I hope I get to go soon.
Image by me.

Random Pretty Man

This is Dana Holgorsen, WVU's new football coach. 

Not bad, huh?  I mean, as football coaches go? 

Here he is wearing the appropriate paraphernalia....


Tuesday's Girl

"I don't entirely approve of some of the things I have done, or am, or have been.  But I'm me.  God knows, I'm me."
Elizabeth Taylor

Missing You

I used to have a little thing for John Waite.

I had forgotten how much I love this song.  I also love the cleft in his chin....

And you have to admit, the eighties hair is pretty fierce.

This Charming Closet

All of the sudden, I got in the mood for Wayfarers

I guess since I'm going back to the skinny jeans I wore in the 80's, I can go back to the sunglasses as well. 

The thing is, I always thought I looked good in Wayfarers and still think so. 

So if you bump into me on the street, expect me to be all cooly girl in my Ray Bans. 


Happy Monday


I hope everybody had a wonderful Thanksgiving. 

Here's what happened around here:

We went to West Virginia. 

Lola Bean spent the better part of three days herding, fussing over and licking the ears of my nephews, with varying degrees of squalling, giggling and good-natured tolerance.

Finn took one look at the baby and decided he didn't want any part of him.  My baby nephew is a thug.  A thug I tell you.  I have the bruises on my legs to prove it!  He's gonna kill my sister.  I don't even want to think what he'll do when he learns to walk.  As of now, he scoots, crawls, and rolls through the house looking for trouble and food.  He's a tiny thug with blond hair, slobber and 4 teeth. 

We ate and napped. 

Two Beans went outside (and being 'mountain doggies' for the holiday) proceeded to roll in all manner of stinkiness and dirt. Lola had to be squirted off twice on Thanksgiving - once covered in mud and once covered in something stinky that I don't even KNOW what it was.  Finn had one trip to the utility room sink COVERED in wild turkey poop.  COVERED.  He was so proud to be so disgusting and so aggravated that I washed it all off. 

Although I did a fair amount of online browsing, I only bought one thing on Black Friday - a pair of jeans from the Gap.  Yeah - I know, go figure. 

We came home and I cleaned the house and put up the Christmas trees and we generally hung out for the rest of the weekend. 

So how's that? 

This week I have court on Monday and Tuesday followed by a short week and the big kick off of my annual BIRTHDAY EXTRAVAGANZA!!!  It'll run through next Tuesday, in case you're keeping up. 

So let's have a great week!  Christmas is just around the corner.

xoxo - Tonya
Image:  Harvest Time by Shannon Leigh Studios.


On Friday night we played Pitt at home. 

We beat em'. 



Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!

Finn and Lola and I hope that you all have a safe and wonderful holiday!

Smoochies to you all!
Image:  Thanksgiving Wreath by Two Inspire You.


Wednesday - Run Away Without Leaving Home

Image: Paris Cafe by Carl Christensen.

The Perfect Stocking Stuffer


What do you get for your effortlessly chic, ultra-responsible, handbag loving friends????

Why Rebecca Minkoff condoms, of course!!!

I'm totally serious about this.

Miss Minkoff has designed these condoms to be both functional and stylish!  And you have to admit, they are the ultimate stocking stuffer

Although they are currently sold out on line, check back often because you just KNOW your friends need to have them!!!   And all proceeds go to Planned Parenthood. 

Look how CUTE they are.....

Oh - and the Morning After Bag is sold separately....

Extra, Extra (Not so Random) Pretty Man

Now - you know I don't approve of the cigarette and would never, EVER snog a smoker....

Unless it was Paul Newman. 

I would make an exception for him.

I would have definitely snogged Paul Newman.  Repeatedly. 

But I wouldn't have let him smoke in the house.  Unless he was naked.  And then maybe I would have reconsidered.... 

Am I getting off topic???

This Charming Handbag

*Heavy Sigh*

While we're talking about bags I want and cannot afford....

In NO reasonable universe should this bag cost $2,700.00.

Damn you, Victoria Beckham!

And leads me to ask the question of why Coach or Kate Spade can't produce a more affordable version of such a simple, timeless, classic and tailored silhouette.


Tuesday's Girl

"Being a woman is of special interest only to aspiring male transsexuals.  To actual women, it is merely a good excuse not to play football."
Fran Lebowitz

A Little Extra Pretty Man

I'm still not over it.

There's just nothin' prettier than Paul Newman.

Not one thing.

This Charming Handbag Addict

This is the Leather and Suede Doctor Bag from The Row.

I love it.  I would sell a kidney for it.  Well, not a kidney - but you get the drift.

It costs $4,750.00.

No, that's not a typo.  It costs that much.  And don't you know I'm bitter about it.

Damn you Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen!


Happy Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!

It's Thanksgiving week!  Christmas is just around the corner.

I am so in the mood for the holidays this year.  I'm almost giddy and for a long, long time I didn't believe I had any giddiness left in me.

And, you know, it's great because it's not even pharmacologically induced!

I have a short week at work - about which I am very happy.  My job was so job-y last week.  I had to be in Court three days.  Three days!  I was running out of lawyer clothes.

My major accomplishment last week was spending almost all of the money sitting in my flexible spending account at work.  We're getting down to brass tacks, here.  However, thanks to the necessity of new contacts and glasses and three new teeny-tiny fillings in my teeth, I have cleaned that sucker out!  Gotta love it.

Oh - and get this.  Because I have money I have to spend, of course I found it difficult to spend it all.  The frames I liked for my glasses weren't actually the most expensive ones there.  Gah!  I hate it when that happens.

I have a facial this week - super excited about that - and then the Beans and I are headed to the mountains for a few days of reading, eating, napping and shopping.  Finn and Lola LOVE to go to West Virginia.  They enjoy a few days of being mountain doggies. 

Here's hoping for a wonderful week.

xoxo - Tonya
Image:  Winter Berries by Raceytay.

Random Pretty Man

Ain't nobody got nuthin' on Paul Newman. 

I mean, really.

Sunday Evening

Picking up my brother....


Happy Weekend


The Beans and I are cutting out early this week. 

Have a great weekend and enjoy the fall weather, where ever you are -

And we'll see you next week.

xo - Tonya
Image:  Bikes and Fall Leaves by His & Hers.


Wednesday - Run Away Without Leaving Home

I am happily embracing winter this year.
Image:  Snow Barn by Moonlight Photography.

Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly

If you missed Diane Sawyer's 20/20 interview with Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly on Monday night - go find it online and watch it. 

What formidable people. 

I have two things to say about it:

First, I have nothing in my life to complain about.  And the next time I feel like it, I'm going to make myself remember how hard this extraordinary woman is working to get her life back; and

Second, I pray that God will some day send me a partner like Mark Kelly and I also pray that God will give me the good sense to know him if I ever meet him. 

Etc., Etc.

So -  last Thursday was a day I knew would one day come.

It's a day that you say to yourself "I know it will happen, Lord.... but not today.  OK?"

Well, November 8, 2011 it happened to me.

I need *deep breath* bifocals.....

OK - I'm being a teensy bit dramatic.

I don't need bifocals yet.  But I now have multifocal contacts and the doctor said that if I didn't want them I'd have to pick up some +1.00 'readers' (the lowest available power).

But there's nowhere to go from here but down - ya know?

Now - I'm pretty much functionally blind and have been for a long time.  I've had some type of corrective lens since I was 12.  I'm used to it.


My doctor tells me that vision issues like this occur because the cornea doesn't stop growing as we age - so it's not a matter of 'degeneration'  - only a matter of reaching a certain age.

Somehow that makes me feel better and worse at the same time. 

So I've decided to buy some sexy glasses.

When the going gets tough, the aging go shopping....

On Books

"Literature takes a habit of mind that has disappeared.  It requires silence, some form of isolation, and sustained concentration in the presence of an enigmatic thing."
Philip Roth
Image:  Bookish by Rory Leslie.


Tuesday's Girl

"Faith is like stepping off a cliff and expecting one of two outcomes - you will either land on solid ground or you will be taught to fly."
Hillary Rodham Clinton

Drops of Jupiter

I'm on a Drops of Jupiter jag.


I know that most people in the known universe think that it's the cheesiest song ever written but I LOVE it. And I listen to it over and over and over.

So I'm inflicting (yes, I said 'inflicting') it on y'all.....

This Charming Closet



I am aware of the fact that I cannot get away with them and would look stupid trying and would be mocked and ridiculed by my best friend - I can hear it now "Cute boots. Where's your coonskin cap?"

But still - I am from West Virginia, you know.  We ARE mountaineers.... 

I know.  I know.  I can't get away with them.  I'm not kidding anybody.

I suppose we all have to live with our limitations, right?


Happy Monday

Here's what happened here this weekend:

I got up at the crack of dawn on Saturday and took my brother and sister-in-law to the airport.


Cleaned the house

Smooched too cranky Beans (I don't know why there were cranky - they just were)

Read some books

Nap - BIG NAP -  it was fabulous

Sunday Brunch at Cafe Monte


Dinner at Nolen Kitchen

And I've got court out of town in the morning - boo! 
Image:  Home for the Holidays by Moonlight Photography.

Random Pretty Man

This is Mr. Mark Harmon.....

He's dreamy.

That is all.

Sunday Morning


It wasn't Paris, but it's reminiscent, they give me champagne and I don't have to fly for 8 hours to get there.

So it's alright on a cloudy Sunday morning.


Happy Friday

Have a great weekend, everyone!

xoxo - Tonya
Image:  Red Jam by InFire.


The Weekly Bean

So the Beans went off to Puppy Camp last weekend and had a blast.  Not only did they not say goodbye to me before they ran hysterically to Miss Beth's car to go bye bye, they didn't seem particularly happy to be brought home on Sunday....

And then - 15 minutes later - they hit the wall. 

This boy apparently forgot himself and played too hard all weekend and is now gimpy and on anti-inflamatories.  He doesn't so much mind because I usually wrap his pills in cheese and he just thinks it cheese bonanza time.  Also, he is not averse to laying around - which is what he really needs to do right now.

Here he is laying by the door and keeping an eye out for undesireables.....

The Invisible Man

October's book on my New Year's Reading List was The Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison.

I have to tell you that after reading the first chapter of this book, I didn't want to go on.  I was depressed and almost sick to my stomach.  But then I soldiered on.

Here's what Time Magazine had to say about it when picking it for it's Top 100 Novels:
A nameless young black man wends a tortuous path from a southern town — where a local white men’s club mockingly awards him a scholarship to a black college — to the streets of New York City, where everybody, black and white, left and right, man and woman, seems to have their own ideas about who he is and what purpose he can serve. Evenhandedly exposing the hypocrisies and stereotypes of all comers, Invisible Man is far more than a race novel, or even a bildungsroman. It’s the quintessential American picaresque of the 20th century.
After the first chapter, I found that he (our main character and narrator has no name so I'll just refer to him as 'he') sort of bugged me.  I sympathized terribly for him at first but then after a while I found myself sort of wishing he'd grow up.  He floated around trying to be what others wanted him to be but it didn't seem that he gave much thought to what he wanted.   Of course, when I got to the final chapter I realized that was sort of the point.

Although this is a very disturbing book I think it ended on a hopeful note - which I liked.

I also found myself comparing my experience as a woman with his experiences.  Although the book is clearly about racism, it is also about so much more.  It's about being disenfranchised.  It's about trying to meet others' expectations without taking your own thoughts and wishes into account.  I thought a lot about Virginia Woolf's book, Three Guineas, while I was reading The Invisible Man.   Although they are vastly different, they touch on many of the same themes.  That sort of universal truth is I suppose what makes this a great book.

Next up:  Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy (This one fills me with dread).

Etc., Etc.

While shopping last weekend with my best friend.....

Me:  "Isn't this cute?  Look at the patches on the elbows."

Her:  *heavy sigh*  "Don't you already have a sweater that makes you look like a gondolier in Venice?"


Wednesday - Run Away Without Leaving Home

Image:  Red Umbrella in the Piazza by Greg's Fine Art.

Etc., Etc.

This is the Edie Vase by Jonathan Adler.....

Upon seeing it in a chi chi boutique - in DuPont Circle - my best friend said:

"Tonya - I think you should buy that Jonathan Adler twat for your living room."

Yeah - that's how we roll.

This Charming Handbag Addict

This is the Michael Kors Gia Satchel in Tangerine......

I am in lurve with it.....

You know, I try not to play favorites with the bags, I really, really do, but I love this one.

Love it....


Tuesday's Girl

"Sometimes I wonder if men and women really suit each other.  Perhaps they should live next door and just visit now and then."
Katharine Hepburn

The Killing Moon

It's November, so it must be time for the Big 80's at Chateau Bee Charmer....

Come on.... you all know you love Echo and the Bunnymen....

The Perfectly Imperfect Home

My copy of The Perfectly Imperfect Home came last week!

I admit it.  I belong to the Deborah Needleman cult. 

The book is gorgeously illustrated and full of wonderful information as well as philosophy on home making.  I was a little disappointed that there weren't actual pictures of real homes in this book. 

I admit it, I was hoping to see more photos of Ms. Needleman's actual home - I'll try to get over it. 

If you loved the Domino book, you'll love this one, too. 


Happy Monday

I went away this weekend - a lovely little trip to D.C. to visit my best friend.  I had a great time. 

We shopped (purses were bought - she's a HORRIBLE influence), we looked at art (Rothko - yay!), scoped out some furniture and ate really well. 

All in all, a great weekend. 

And then I got home and finished reading my book. 

I would like to have talked to Finn and Lola, but they came home from puppy camp, demanded supper and then promptly went to sleep.  They're exhausted!

Thank you all for dropping by! 

xoxox - Tonya
Image:  Vintage Suitcase by Mon o Graphy.

Saturday Afternoon

The Bee Charmer Loves Charleston

Image by me.


Happy Friday

Hi, everyone!!!

Have a lovely Friday and an even lovelier weekend!

xoxo - Tonya
Image:  Joie de vivre by alphaNumericphoto.


The Weekly Bean

They love each other so much.  It breaks my heart.  I am so glad they get to live with me.

The Marriage Plot

This week I read The Marriage Plot - after reading glowing reviews and finding it sold out at my local Barnes & Noble (apparently due to a glowing review on NPR which caused a run on it...)

Here's what Amazon has to say about it:
It’s the early 1980s—the country is in a deep recession, and life after college is harder than ever.  In the caf├ęs on College Hill, the wised-up kids are inhaling Derrida and listening to Talking Heads. But Madeleine Hanna, dutiful English major, is writing her senior thesis on Jane Austen and George Eliot, purveyors of the marriage plot that lies at the heart of the greatest English novels.
As Madeleine tries to understand why “it became laughable to read writers like Cheever and Updike, who wrote about the suburbia Madeleine and most of her friends had grown up in, in favor of reading the Marquis de Sade, who wrote about deflowering virgins in eighteenth-century France,” real life, in the form of two very different guys, intervenes.
Leonard Bankhead—charismatic loner, college Darwinist, and lost Portland boy—suddenly turns up in a semiotics seminar, and soon Madeleine finds herself in a highly charged erotic and intellectual relationship with him. At the same time, her old “friend” Mitchell Grammaticus—who’s been reading Christian mysticism and generally acting strange—resurfaces, obsessed with the idea that Madeleine is destined to be his mate.
Over the next year, as the members of the triangle in this amazing, spellbinding novel graduate from college and enter the real world, events force them to reevaluate everything they learned in school. Leonard and Madeleine move to a biology Laboratory on Cape Cod, but can’t escape the secret responsible for Leonard’s seemingly inexhaustible energy and plunging moods. And Mitchell, traveling around the world to get Madeleine out of his mind, finds himself face-to-face with ultimate questions about the meaning of life, the existence of God, and the true nature of love.
Are the great love stories of the nineteenth century dead? Or can there be a new story, written for today and alive to the realities of feminism, sexual freedom, prenups, and divorce? With devastating wit and an abiding understanding of and affection for his characters, Jeffrey Eugenides revives the motivating energies of the Novel, while creating a story so contemporary and fresh that it reads like the intimate journal of our own.
I have to say that I liked this book - although I was ultimately a little unsatisfied with it.  When I first picked it up, I'm sorry to say that I thought "YAY!  Only 368 pages!"  Because I've been reading some pretty heavy (and LONG) shit this year. 

And then, at the end, I wanted 100 pages more.  I didn't dislike the ending at all, I just thought it felt a bit hurried.

But I loved Mitchell and I liked Madeleine and Leonard ..... well, Leonard is still a bit of an unknown.  He is the third leg in a triangle but he's the shortest one.  His character is the least developed of the three and I wish I had known more about him and I think if we could have really gotten into Leonard, we'd have had another 100 pages and a more satisfying book.

If you pick this up, I think you'll like it.  It was charming and adorable and nostalgic and a little heart breaking.  An excellent romance.  I read it compulsively and with great interest. 

I also loved, loved, loved Madeleine's parents, Alton and Phyllida.... I mean, how could you NOT love Phyllida?  She made me laugh out loud almost every time she appeared.

Mr. Eugenides, can we get a sequel???

This Charming House

Lately, I've been totally crushing on graphic, black and white modern art.

I'm obsessed!

Black Cross by Kasimir Malevich

6AOUT by Pierre Soulages

Untitled, 1957 by Franz Kline

Untitled by Gary Hume

I've actually asked my parents to buy me the Kline poster for Christmas.  I think I will love it upstairs in my office.  

AND....  I bought a little 'Black Cross' postcard at The Pompidou Centre in Paris last May.  Here it is, in all it's tiny glory, framed in my living room.  Somehow, I'll bet this wasn't what Kasimir Malevich had in mind...

Also?  How cool is my little brass 'push me/pull you' midcentury modern thing....
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