5 Fast ‘n Virtually Free Holiday Fashion Fixes

GangnamCountdown to Christmas…8 Days to Go. 

Okey dokey we’re in the final stretch of getting all dolled up, partying ‘til we drop, and dealing with those annoying little fashion 911s that always happen at the wrong time.  But fear not, Gangnam Style fixes are here. Gangnam Style she says???  That’s correcto.  I did some research to find out exactly what Gangnam Style is so here you go:  Gangnam means south (nam) of the river (gang) in Korean and it’s become the wealthiest area in South Korea.  So Gangman is seen as where peeps are rich, girls pretty, fashionistas rule, all is cool and you have ‘swag’.  So, with that as my inspiration I share some fast ‘n cool ways to deal with your fashion malfunctions, dance the nite away and avoid a possible night behind bars (and I’m not referring to your fave drinking haunts).  Wuppa Gangnam Style. ..…and Happy New Year!

1. Deodorant marks on your ‘lil black dress?
Use the foam rubber from your dry cleaning hanger or baby wipes.
2. Pills on a sweater?
Rub in one direction with nailbrush or pumice stone
3. Static cling? Fly-away hair?
Rub with a fabric dryer sheet
4. Loose button?
Apply a coat of clear nail polish on top of button’s threads
5. Wrinkles?
Turn your flat iron into a mini press for your cotton or polyester tops. Lightly spritz with water …always best to errr on holding iron a shorter time to insure you banish and don’t burn away those wrinkles

3 Easy Ways to Add Holiday Sparkle to Your Décor

Countdown to Christmas…9 Days to Go!
Only 9 days until you’ll be listening for that pitter-patter of reindeer on your roof. Does your home feel like it’s lacking in festive décor? Here are 3 ideas to add a little sparkle without spending a lot of green.
1. Multi-tasking vases. Pull out those vases hiding in your closet and put them to use (no trip to the florist needed.) Just fill vases with festive objects like ornaments, candy canes, pinecones or mini lights. Gather a few vases together on a table or line them up on a mantle.

Ornaments-in-VaseswPhoto Credit: Rooms for Rent

2. Framed. Swap out framed pictures for festive wrapping paper (try to find some that matches your décor) or wrap the whole frame. Just hang them back on the wall and you’ll have instant holiday pizazz.

FramesjpgPhoto Credit: Frame By Frame Style  

3. Light it up. Mini-lights are inexpensive and give that instant Christmas feel to any space. Wrap them around banisters, frame doors with them (they even make Tiger more festive)…just plug in and be amazed.
Get more ideas for inexpensive and simple holiday décor on my Pinterest Board – Easy & Inexpensive Holiday Décor

CatLights

Holiday Shopping Help

ID-100116562 Countdown to Christmas…10 Days to Go!

Have you made your lists? Have you checked them twice? Even if you have, you might still be stressed about your holiday gifts. Make sure you don’t forget anyone on your list and keep your gift giving organized with these simple sanity-saving tips:

  1. Plan Your Shopping Attack. Don’t let your last minute holiday shopping get out of hand. The stores are busy filled with lots of distractions. Don’t leave for the mall without a list of exactly what you’re looking for and your budget. Look-up a map of the mall or shopping center before your excursion and plot out what stores you will hit so you don’t waste time wandering and looking for your favorite shopping spot.
  2. Shop in Your PJs. I’m not saying you wear your flannels to the store. But you can shop in your PJs if you shop online. This way you can research and compare prices right from the comfort of your computer chair. Just remember to check the shipping dates to ensure that your gifts arrive in time.
  3. Keep Your Gifts Organized. Easily keep track of what you got for everyone on your list and who you might be missing a gift for. Label a shopping bag or small box for each person on your list and place gifts in the bag/box as you purchase them. This also makes wrapping a breeze. Just wrap and put back in the labeled bag until you have time to put bows and gift tags on them.

Stay tuned for more holiday tips as I countdown to Christmas!

2013 HOLIDAY GIFTS THAT KEEP ON GIVING! Click it Forward!

What better way to be in the spirit of the holiday season then to give gifts that give back!  So this year I’ve teamed up with five outstanding organizagions where you can do just that for as little as 25!! So on your mark get set. . .  click it forward!

KIVA: GIVA KIVA GIFT CARD and HELP CHANGE A LIFE
Kiva Gift Card_NEWwoman in store

Here’s one that truly speaks to passing it forward  and it’s so simple because you can do it all online. For the past eight years, Kiva, a non-profit organization, has been using the internet to connect people through micro-lending to help alleviate poverty in 70 countries around the world, including here in the U.S. Purchase a $25 Kiva gift card online for your family or friends and give them the opportunity to Make a Loan NOT A DONATION that can Change a Life. Your gift recipient will then choose whom they would like to lend to – from a banana farmer in South Africa to a seamstress in Detroit – there are thousands of borrowers. And, once that loan has been paid back, your gift recipient can choose to take the money back or re-loan that money to a new borrower, essentially doubling the power of your loan money! Simple, meaningful and fun! Truly the gift that can keep on giving!

PETSMART CHARITIES: PAW-FECT FOR THE PET LOVER

Gifts That Give Back Table_2

I am a huge love of PetSmart Charities not only because I love pets but because it’s rated in the top 1% of charities by Charity Navigator:  receiving their highest 4-star rating for ten consecutive years! Best of all, just $25 will save a shelter pet’s life by giving them shelter space, food and crucial veterinary services. And ninety cents of every dollar goes directly to help pets in need, one of the highest percentages among all charities. Also, if you’re in a PetSmart store you might see these adorable Chance and Lucky dolls. 10% of the proceeds from the sale of these cute critters will also go to PetSmart Charities to help save homeless pets.

WORLD WILDLIFE FUND: ADOPT A TIGER…IT’S GRRREAT!

WWF_25mm_tab_VIDEO.eps large-Tiger-photo

Here’s a novel and critical gift idea for the holidays from World Wildlife Fund.  Make a donation to WWF at Donatewwf.org for a symbolic tiger adoption. Tigers need our help more than ever before.100 years ago, there were an estimated 100,000 tigers living in the wild. Now, there are less than 3,200. 97% of the population has been lost. Tigers have also lost more than 90% of the forests they call home. And your donation will be put to work helping reduce threats to majestic species like tigers, and other species in the wild like elephants, rhinos and polar bears threatened by poaching, habitat loss and climate change. And, you’ll get something too! For your donation, you’ll receive a thank-you gift of a cute tiger plush, photo, fact sheet and certificate that you can send to a friend or family member. World Wildlife Fund has an entire Gifts That Give Back catalog with more than 200 thank-you gifts to select from to share your commitment to conservation. For more than 50 years, their vision has been to build a better future in which people live in harmony with nature. WWF works around the world to reduce the most pressing environmental threats to wildlife, wild places and people.

MeeGenius:  WILL MAKE YOU A GENIUS…JOIN THE CLUB!

Front-Preview

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this one and wish it were around when my son was young! Check out MeeGenius, it is an incredible library of interactive books for children that works on computers at home, iPads, and iPhones!  I think of it like ITunes for literacy since the library includes over 700 classics, best sellers and MeeGenius-original children’s titles that are hand-picked by editors and educators.  Every single book is beautifully illustrated and includes optional “read to me” narration so kids can have a book read to them while each word is highlighted, promoting their own reading comprehension. And for the first time ever MeeGenius is launching their brand new Reading Club which parents, grandparents, whoever can give as a gift.  You get three months of unlimited access to their entire library for just $19.99 or a year for $59.99 – And, MeeGenius will donate 10% of all sales to PBS KIDS. A genius boredom buster idea too for holiday travel and chants of ‘are we there yet!”

Carpet One Floor & Home:   YOUR SUPPORT MAT-TERS

JulieTerrificTini

This is the second year that the folks at  Carpet One Floor and Home asked me to partner with them to design a welcome mat  of which 25% of  the proceeds go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  And, this year we took a ‘graphic’ twist on my signature cocktail…the dirty martini! A terrific holiday gift for the hostess with the mostess that not only looks good but giving one does so much go0d! The mat is a terrific holiday hostess gift  that looks good and does so much good!

Happy giving holidays all!

SOME FORGET ME NOT SPRING CLEANING MULTI-TASKERS

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Though it hasn’t been feeling very spring-like in the North, today is the first day of spring…YEAH! And, as part of my ongoing crusade to make housework less work so we have more free time, I’ve put together a few of my favorite spring cleaning store-bought multi-tasking products.  And,  I’ve partnered with  some companies to share their new twists on these staples which will help save us time, money and our manicure this spring cleaning season or any other day of the year!

 

ALLERGEN FIGHTER ‘n  AIR FRESHENER:  Spring cleaning usually means we focus on cleaning  windows, curtains and our bedding.  But we often overlook the areas that harbor dust and dust mites like on our bookshelves, plants and lampshades.  Introducing the latest and greatest my savior:

Swiffer 180 Duster with Gain:  It has fluffy fibers to help trap ‘n lock the dust instead of the old-fashioned feather duster which I feel just move dust from one place to another.  It can get in tight places like underneath furniture, nooks in your coffee table and corners of picture frames!  PLUS this new Swiffer freshens the room by leaving behind the joyful scent of Gain for all we Gainiacs!!!

 

GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:  For years, I’ve been soooo frustrated by the fact that I know there’s more spray left in my cleaning products but no matter what I do to access the remaining liquid I either spill it on a surface-wasting it or I just chuck it.  Well no more!  Thanks to the brilliant peeps at Clorox they’ve come to my (our rescue!) with SMART TUBE (R) TECHNOLOGY! It’s a built in tube that reaches all the way to the bottom of spray bottles, allowing you to spray every drop. It’s available on bottles of Clorox® Clean Up®, Tilex® and Formula 409® Cleaners.  Hmmm now if a wine maker could invent similar technology for that lil bit of wine left at the bottom of the bottle that would really be grape to the last drop!

 

NEVER HALF BAKED: NUMERO UNO MULTI-TASKER: If I was left alone on a deserted island the one thing I’d want with me is baking soda…It’s so useful for so many things around the house from cleaning, to fixing drains to stain removal to odor absorption and all else betwixt n between. And now Arm & Hammer has answered my dreams with a laundry product that has an incredibly strong cleaning power aptly enough named Arm & Hammer Ultra Power 4X liquid laundry. It’s super concentrated so you need less to get more. It costs about 50% less than the leading detergent per load, so you have more money to get that manicure! And with the small bottle, it’s easier to carry around and pour!

 

LIGHTENING THE LOAD:  I love anything that saves me time as you know particularly when it’s a chore I abhor and do far too much of like laundry.  But alas having a teenage son this is my fate, which is why I love, love this LG Washer.   It will save your health, time and energy!  It has steam technology, with cleaning options like an allergen reduction cycle that will get rid of 95% of common household allergies. Great timing with those spring allergies in the air! The Turbowash technology will save up to 20 minutes per load, and you can fit an entire set of king size bedding, including the comforter, in a single load. And this model has earned ENERGY STAR “most Efficient” designation, meaning that this washer falls in the top 5% in its class! That’s lightening the load on all fronts!

 

A MANI-CURE’S TWO BEST FRIENDS: 

 1. HABIT BREAKER-MANICURE SAVER: Old habits are hard to break but this one my friends you should run don’t walk to do!!  Usually I pre-wash my dishes and during spring cleaning I wash those party plates, platters and glassware that lay in my cabinets collecting dust.  Forget that! New Cascade Platinum that is a manicure’s best friend since it requires NO PRE-WASHING.  Simply scrape off large food pieces and place those babies right into the dishwasher.  You can even leave them there for 24 hours and they’ll come out sparkling clean…my martini glass never shined so!  And, it’s another multi-tasker since it will help prevent filming on the walls of your dishwasher machine.

 

2. HABIT BREAKER-MANICURE SAVER: Betwixt the New Cascade ‘n this LG TrueStream technology dishwasher is so powerful that you practically eliminate pre-washing for all your dishwasher safe dishes, glassware, pots and pans will be a rarity in your life — OMG!!!  There is also a sanitary rinse option that rinses your dishes with 160 degree water, for an optimal clean. It is also Energy Star qualified and saves nearly 5,000 gallons of water a year vs. hand-washing. With the EasyRack Plus adjustable rack system, it minimizes the frustration of fitting everything that you eat, drink, serve or cook on in there. And BTW if you really want to multi-task tightly wrap a salmon filet with a lil bit of butter, white wine, and mustard in piece of aluminum; run it full cycle with a dishwashing load and viola you’ve also got some Clean Cuisine!  Bubbly optional…as in champagne J

And, BTW here are a few tips on the best way to load your dishwasher to insure the best results!

      • Place forks and spoons facing up and knives down – this ensures that you get the most detergent interaction, but keeps things safe!
      • Glasses mugs, plastics and bowls go on the top rack at an angle to allow water to properly drain off.
      • Plates, bowls, cookware go on the bottom rack and must be spaced out to allow the water and detergent to clean everything.
      • Before starting your machine, run the sink in your kitchen until the water is hot.  This helps ensure the water that enters your

machine is at the optimal temperature.

 

TRIED ‘N TRUE ‘N SOMETHING BOU-QUET:  Though I wish I could put everything in my dishwasher certain items are a no no like my fine crystal.  That’s why I always use the classic uber grease-fighting Dawn Ultra which has 2x the grease-fighting ingredient vs the leading non-concentrated dish soap which means your suds last longer and you save money cause you use less. WIN WIN!  I also use it to wash my microwave plate which sports those coffee overheats and spills!  And, with spring in the air, it’s a no brainer for cleaning my vases and then filling them with a beautiful bouquet of flowers…Aahhh tra la tra la…spring is in the air!

HALLOWEEN TIPS ‘N TREATS TO SATISFY ANY BOY’S OR GHOUL’S SWEET TOOTH

Halloween is a holiday packed with scary goblins, spook-tacular activities and lots of our child’s favorite treats (and ours too!).  And, half the fun of the day is the time spent going door to door seeing how many treats they can collect. The trick as parents is making sure that our children wait until they get home to go through and enjoy their bounty.  Allowing your children to enjoy their candy in moderation is ok and don’t get too concerned with the type of sugar in the candy (sugar, honey, high fructose corn syrup) as experts agree i’ve learned from research and partnering with the Corn Refiner’s Association, that it’s all about balance and moderation as sugar is sugar and all sugars are nutritionally the same.

So here are a few tips and treats to help you balance the sweets they eat and satisfy their sweet tooth:

TIPS

  • Don’t send them out hungry
  • Satisfy their ‘sweet tooth’ pre trick or treating
  • Instruct them not to eat ANY items before they arrive home
  • Compromise ‘n remember you were a child once too and Halloween was a day  for eating a few more candies then usual J

TREATS

YUMMY MUMMY Makes 4

What You Need:

  • 1 8 oz. can of refrigerated crescent roll, seamless if available
  • Cookie sheet
  • Aluminum foil to fit sheet
  • 4 slices of American or cheddar cheese
  • Plastic knife
  • 4 Pre-cooked sausages
  • 1 raw egg, scrambled or cooking spray
  • Mustard

How to Make Them:

  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Unroll dough on tin foil
  3. Use knife to cut 4 even sized squares
    1. If not seamless dough connect two crescents together to create four mummies
    2. Place cheese slices on dough before cutting ‘wrapping’ strips and cut at same time as ‘dough’.
  4. Place cheese slices on dough before cutting ‘wrapping’ SP from center
  5. Place ‘mummy’ i.e. sausage in center and wrap strip over strip
  6. Brush with egg or cooking spray
  7. Bake per dough package instructions or until brown:  approx. 10-12 minutes
  8. Use mustard to make the eyes and mouth

TRICK OR TEETH:

What You Need:

Pear or Apple cored and sliced in approx. 1/4 inch slices width-wise

How to Make Them:

  1. Cover the ‘jaw’ i.e. fruit slice with a thin layer of ‘gum glue’ i.e. peanut butter or Nutella
  2. Place the ‘teeth’ i.e. mini marshmallows around the edge of the ‘jaw’ (fruit)
  3. Open your mouth wide and enjoy!
  4. Optional:
    1. Make an upper ‘jaw with teeth’ and place on top
    2. Dye one or several of the teeth using food dye

i.     Red for blood

ii.     Black or blue for rotten

 SPOOK-TACULAR SPICED TEA-Makes a Quart

What you need

Gummie worms

Ice cup trays

2 cups water, boiled

2 caffeine free, apple cinnamon spice tea bags

8 ozs. Apple cider

8 ozs. Ginger ale

4 tsp. sugar

How to make it:

Put a gummy worm in each ice cube compartment and cover with water.  Freeze 2-3 hours.

  1. Dunk the tea bags in the hot water (which should be in the measuring cup) until it turns dark.  About three minutes, and, then, throw them out.
  2. When the tea has cooled, pour it into the pitcher.
  3. Add the apple cider, ginger ale, and sugar.  Stir with the wooden spoon.  Pour over ice, and get ready to enjoy a spook-tacularly spiced drink.

BLACK CAT CUPCAKE CONES Makes 12

What you need:

1 box (1l.25 oz) cake mix

12 flat bottom ice cream cones

12 cup muffin pan

1 16 oz can vanilla frosting

Black gel coloring

Decorative icing tubes in assorted colors

Assorted Candies:  red gum drops, twizzlers, Reeses Pieces, Red and Black shoe laces; Candy cones; M & M’s

How to Make Cupcakes:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 325
  2. Prepare batter per box instructions
  3. Fill each cup 3/4 way up with batter
  4. Stand cones straight in muffin pan
  5. Bake 25 mins on center rack…use toothpick to test doneness.. it should come out clean
  6. Cool for 10 min.

How to Make Cat’s Face:

  1. While cupcakes are baking make ‘black paint’ for face with frosting and adding black gel per instructions
  2. Spread on black paint with a plastic knife
  3. Suggestions on making CAT face:
  • Ears:  Candy cones
  • Eyes: White icing to draw slanted football shaped eyes and use colored M & M of choice for pupils
  • Nose:  Red round sugared gum drops
  • Whiskers:  Red shoe lace candy or icing color of choice
  • Mouth: Red icing or red twizzlers torn into 1 “ pieces.

 Goes purr-fect with big glass of milk! 

5 SANITY SAVING TIPS TO REDUCE MORNIN’ HYSTERIA

Gone are the easy breezy days of summer and here once again are the crazy, hectic days of back to school hysteria.  But, I’ve learned that when it comes to minimizing morning madness the best approach, other than pretending your name isn’t ‘Mom,’ is to do it as I do all things housewifely…with balance and moderation. 

1.  MORNING ‘TO DO’ LIST: Together, create a realistic checklist that lets them ‘check off’ to do’s  on a daily basis like Pack Homework; Go Nitey; Wake Up Smilin’, Get Dressed, Eat Breaky; Wash face ‘n hands; Brush Teeth ‘n Hair; Take Lunch; Wish mommy/family a nice day.

2.  PLAN AHEAD: I picked out Luke’s wardrobe with him for the week on Sunday evenings to avoid morning chants of ‘Mommy, what should I wear’ or him coming to the breakfast table in shorts and a tee when it was freezing out!

3.  PACK IT ‘N PLACE IT: Don’t wait until the morning when your child is not quite bright eyed ‘n bushy-tailed to have them pack their back-pack along with their homework.  Do it the night before and put it by the door with their shoes to avoid ‘Mom I can’t find my backpack.’

4. BALANCE YOUR FOOD BATTLES: I found that giving Luke choices helped in my quest to get nutrition in his meals. Particularly since I knew Luke, like most kids, liked something sweet, and he wouldn’t drink milk unless it was flavored so I chose to give him chocolate or strawberry milk. And yes, I know there’s lots of poo-pooing about flavored milk these days, not to mention a lot of talk about “good” sugar versus “bad” sugar.  I have read from experts, and the consensus is, whether it’s the honey on your muffins, the high fructose corn syrup in your ketchup, or the cane syrup in good ole granola, they’re all nutritionally equivalent. This goes with my overall philosophy in all aspects of my life, ‘balance and moderation.’ That’s why I was excited when the folks at CRA asked me to work with them to provide you tips that can help you simplify your mornings and bring it back to the basics, moderation and balance. And as a mom of a now 6’1” Division One college athlete, I think I made the right choice! To learn more about the myths and facts surrounding added sugars, check out this website.

5. FORGET YOUR INNER MARTHA: Who has that kind of time, right? My advice, keep it simple and balanced.  The key is to get something in their tummies that is nutritional and provides energy.  Serve things that are quick ‘n easy to make like fresh fruit or juice, flavored yogurt or milk, and/or toasted bagels, waffles or pancakes with their fave toppings.

As for lunch, here are some suggestions for whatever type of picky eater you may have. Oh yes, and whenever possible get them involved in prepping it since if they had a hand in making it, chances are they’ll eat most of it versus trade it!

  • For Your Veggie Hater:  DIP IT! Have them select the veggie they’ll eat i.e. carrots, celery, cucumber, or fruit and the dip they like: hummus, green goddess dressing, fruit yogurt etc.
  • For Your Never Enough Sweet Toother:  WRAP IT! As the saying goes: ‘forbidden fruit is always sweeter’ so balance it. Make half of a PB & J wrap with bananas and half with cream cheese and strawberries.
  • For Your Snacker: MIX IT! If your child only eats food that comes in a pre-packaged bag or wrapper, create a homemade mix”
    • Mix sweet potato chips like those from Terra with their favorite chip (but get one that’s lower in salt and fat and according to the experts Kettle-cooked is healthier then baked).
    • Mix dried fruits like cranberries or crunchy snap peas with cheese doodles. The fruit ‘n veggies will take on that tasty cheesy coating!

SPILLIN’ ‘N CHILLIN’ AT BLOGHER12 NYC

Happy almost  first friday in August Happy Hour 🙂 Can’t believe it’s already August though i always feel once the Fourth of July passes the summer flies by…and so does the time before my son leaves for his freshman year! Yikes only TWO WEEKS…a blog or two or three about that is coming to a laptop near you in the days ahead!

But this blog’s about the amazing fun I had hosting a private soiree  for Carpet One Floor and Home where pomegranite martinis, pedicures (with or without your stilletos on!),

Life is good!! Cheers!

a  SPILL ‘N CHILL BAR showed how their Relax it’s LEES carpet is the perfect accidental housewife way to go since all you need to clean almost any stain is with good ole water whether it’s grass, mud, pee pee or red wine.   And though you know i like to use and have had great success with some everyday household items like white vinegar, Arm & Hammer baking soda, vodka (Of course and no not because if i drink some the stain doesn’ t look so bad LOL! it really works but use the cheap stuff 🙂 ), shaving cream and so on some stains just don’t come out…which is why i rearrange my furniture every few months to cover those stubborn ones up!  Kidding aside…i like my other gal pal bloggers were amazed.  

I’ve got more pix and things to share from that in the next day or so ..having some tech probs so apologies, as you’ll see by these fuzzy pix:  One of a very appealing fellow I met there!  And the other of me trying out a new vacuum to replace my good ole broom and fly home on from Samsung 🙂 Come to think of it maybe it’s not my camera but the person whom took it who may have had a few too many ‘tinis at the Spill Bar 🙂  Spread the glove!  http://www.juliestips.com  

Trying out a new ‘travel’ vac-broom 🙂

Goin bananas 🙂

GETTIN’ BUGGY ‘N BUZZED WITH PAT BATTLE ON TODAY NY!

Taped a segment yesterday with my fave NBC WEEKEND TODAY IN NEW YORK HOST Pat Battle

I love ‘spreading the glove’ with Pat even if it means I have to be bright eyed ‘n bushy-tailed before the roosters cockadoodle doo!  She’a such a wonderful human being and a real hoot to work with!  And, she just loved that I got her all grossed out talking about stuff that bugs us…including our hair  and this crazy summer heat wave which is why i’ve given up on coiffing my hair and am doo-ing the quick clip UP DOO.  No muss no fuss! Love that!!

Hope those of you in the tri-state NY, NJ, Connecticut area will tune in next Sunday, and see how with a ‘lil basil, vodka and red wine nuttin was buggin us or will you!  Spread the glove!

NEW YORK, NEW YORK IT’S A HELLUVA TOWN THIS ‘N EVERY MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND!

New York, New York it’s a HELLUVA town! Just like Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelly and Jules Munshin sung in the 1944 classic movie “On the town” …well actually they sang it was a ‘wonderful town’ since they had to ‘clean up’ the lyrics for the movie version…times sure have changed eh!

For those of you who’ve not seen this gem on TCM as I have since clearly I was not a glimmer in any one’s eye or plans for centuries to come 🙂 …it’s the story of 3 sailors on shore leave in New York City circa World War Two times. I’m reminded of it cause Wednesday marked the start of Fleet Week in NYC and I was lucky enough to see the parade of ships thanks to shooting a Better TV segment that morning (which by the way you can watch this Tuesday so check local listings for some summer backyard cleaning tips!).

But as serendipity would have it, following the shoot with Better’s host Audra Lowe, my always terrific bud both on and off the set, we went down to Battery Park and found a restaurant right on the Hudson at Wagner Park called Gigino’s where Doug and I planted ourselves with vino in hand to watch and toast the ships, sailors ‘n US Navy in general passing by.  It was truly an amazing sight seeing historic clippers and battleships complete with sailors lining the edges waving and appreciative folks like myself waving back, taking photos for keeping us safe….

Like many of my shore mates, it made me proud to be an American as did our taking a stroll afterwards

and seeing the soon to be completed Freedom Tower

WOW… No matter how much time has gone by since that tragic day: September 11, 2001 or  whether you are hundreds of yards away or simply hear the date it does and should evoke an incredibly array of emotions.  Wow, again…So as we start this unofficial summer kick-off and more importantly  Memorial Day Weekend honoring those whom have given their time, soul and life for our country, I repeat “New York, New York it’s a a helluva town” and wonderful too…. Spread the glove!