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Juley Jules is holding our first modeling contest.  The lucky winner will receive a $500 shopping spree at www.juleyjules.com and represent Juley Jules in campaigns, our website, advertisements, facebook posts and other marketing materials. 

To Enter:

  • To enter please send a photo of your child, (age 12months to age 12), to romyw@juleyjules.com.
  • Please include your name, phone number, address and facebook link. Tag yourself in the picture at www.facebook.com/juleyjules.com.
  • It is not required that you wear Juley Jules in your photo, but we sure would love it!
  • Share your photo on facebook,  twitter and anywhere else to get maximum exposure.

Official Rules:

  • There will be one winner
  • 3 Finalists will be named on December 1st, 2011. 
  • Two finalists will be selected based on the highest number of “likes” per facebook photo. 
  •  The last finalist will be selected by the staff at Juley Jules.
  • Final winner will be selected by our fans. 
  • Winners will be named on December 18th.
  • All winners will be required to take photos of their children in clothing supplied by Juley Jules and upload the pictures for Juley Jules to use in various advertisements.  Please make sure you are able to fullfill these requirements before entering.

Good Luck & start sending in those photos!

 

 

 

Nobody asked for my advice, but I’m giving it anyway!

When you are pregnant with your first child, everyone wants to give you advice.  Any by everyone, I mean everyone from close family members to the check out lady at the convenience store.  Normally, I like to figure things out on my own and get a bit irritated when people offer unsolicited advice, but looking back over the past years, I have to admit maybe I should have listened a bit more closely.  So to those of you about to embark on the journey of parenthood, here’s your warning (unsolicited, of course):

  1. If your husband buys McDonalds and eats it in the hospital room while you are in labor, you are morally and legally absolved from any necessary repercussions. (Sadly, yes, my husband actually did this)
  2. Likewise, if your husband complains that there is nothing good on TV and he is bored while you are in labor, the same rules apply as in #9. (Again, yes, my husband did this too)
  3. The first time your baby sleeps through the night, before you panic and think they are dead, take a second to remember what a good night sleep actually feels like, then run like hell to make sure they survived the night.
  4. Don’t ever brag about how perfect your baby is due to your superior mothering skills.  You will be rewarded with a second child that is a complete nightmare.  Plus nobody likes a show off!
  5. After months of waking up three times per night while watching your husband get 10 straight hours of uninterrupted sleep, resist all urges to grab your largest frying pan and whack that sleeping bastard over the head.  Remember ladies, if God had made men the mommies the human race would have died out thousands of years ago.
  6. Don’t trust anyone who constantly talks about how wonderful their husband is and that he is biggest help with the baby.  They are lying and on the verge of a divorce.  Only befriend those who have had thoughts mentioned in #5.
  7. When your toddler says they need to pee, they don’t mean at the nearest bathroom, they mean it is already coming out and unless you want to clean up pee in the cereal aisle, you better get to the bathroom, pronto.
  8. Never let your toddler ride in a car with upholstered seats – refer to #7.
  9. Start now building your “repair” fund.  You should put away the same amount that you do for the college fund because you will need it.
  10. Say no immediately to the PTO – The minute you say “yes” it is a life sentence.
  11. Be prepared for all your belongings to become community property.  Nothing, absolutely nothing, is yours anymore.
  12. Make a calendar (the advent type) with the exact date you plan on your last child going to college.   This will be the day you and your husband can again have an uninterrupted conversation in daylight hours.
  13. Don’t sweat the small stuff.  If your kid wants to go to the mall in last year’s Halloween costume, let them.  You need to save your stamina for the puberty years.
  14. When your babies become teenagers, be prepared to parent an additional 10 more kids, because they travel in packs and one or more is always under your care.
  15. The first time your tween says “I hate you”, take it as a compliment.  It means you have a done a good job parenting them.
  16. Last but not least, enjoy every moment of it.  When your kids are grown and out of the house,  you will be spending Sundays watching your husband watch football wishing you still had a houseful of loud and crazy kids.

Now all you first time moms aren’t going to heed any of the warning signals above because you sincerely believe things will be different with “you”.  It’s OK, it happens to the best of us.    

What have I missed?

One Life Lost is Too Many!

For the 4th time in the past 4 months, a child in our community has taken their own life.  Although, I have never met any of them, it hits me like a ton of bricks each time.  I know I cannot begin to image the type of despair that drives one to think ending your life is the right solution.  It not only breaks my heart to realize that we will never know the greatness that could have been achieved by these children, but the heartbreak of knowing the suffering and pain was so great.    

My mother instinct immediately kicks in and I realize how the parents will never again be the same people, their lives are forever changed.  How will they every possibly regain any semblance of normalcy?  What type of guilt is felt wondering what could have been done to prevent such a tragedy? 

The biggest question I have is why is suicide becoming so prevalent?  Have we become a society that thrives on perfection and our children are trying to live up to unrealistic expectations?  Maybe it is an epidemic of undiagnosed and untreated mental illnesses? Is bullying becoming so rampant that it is forever affecting future generations?  I don’t claim to know any of above the answers, but what I do know is that something needs to be done and fast.  

While I am generally a proponent of schools focusing on academics and parents focusing on parenting, I strongly believe we could make a difference with school sponsored programs addressing what are normal feelings and what are not and what to do if you feel like you are vulnerable.

Until that happens, I will continue to have regular conversations with my kids, encouraging them to talk, talk, talk about what makes them happy and what makes them sad, no matter how trivial they think it is.  After each of these incidents, we have sat down and had long talks about the subject.  Kids are kids and don’t have a long attention span for something they don’t feel applies to them, so I am thinking of writing each of them letter that they can keep and pull out if they ever feel the need. 

It would go something like this:

I brought you into this world with the greatest intentions and hopes that life will bring you all of your wildest hopes and dreams.  While I have all the confidence in the world that you can achieve anything you set your mind to, there are always bumps along the way.  Life can be hard at times, but it is those hard times where we learn the most valuable lessons.  Success and happiness are almost impossible without a few failures along the way.

There is nothing in this world that you cannot overcome, absolutely nothing!  I sometimes look at life in small time frames; assuming you live to be 80, you are an infant for 1% of your life, a toddler for 5% of your life, in Jr. High for less than 4% of your life and in high school for 5% of your life.  Jr. High and High School is a time of tremendous growth and change, but in the big scheme, it is a blip in the radar of life.  Once you reach adulthood, you will never base any of your relationships again on what someone’s status was in high school.  It may seem impossible to understand now, but maturity is a beautiful thing.  It allows you the opportunity to do what you want to do without regard to what others think, befriend anyone of your choosing without worrying that your friends may not accept them, and best of all, have the freedom to be what you want to be. Everyone wants to fit in and be accepted.  The beauty is that it takes all types to make the world go around and there is a place for everyone!

So if there is ever a time when you feel like the pressure or grinds of life become too much, that is when you reach out and ask for help.  As your mother, I would go the ends of the earth to make you feel better.   There is nothing in this world that I love more than my kids, and there is nothing in this world that I wouldn’t do to make you feel like the most important and the most loved person in the universe.  From the minute you were born, I would spend hours staring at your face and wondering how I could possibly love anything more. With each child, I was amazed there was more love to give!  In the bad times, all you need to do is think of your biggest cheerleader and remember there is always someone on your side.  There is a solution to every problem and everything eventually passes.  When I look back on times in my life, it seems I mostly remember happy times and the bad times are only a very distant memory.  I truly believe that it is because those bad times led me to something good. 

Half of the fun of life is the anticipation of what is going to come next!

Last but not least, don’t ever strive for perfection, because you will never find it.  We all have flaws and that is what makes us human.  How boring would we be if we were all perfect?  Find humor in all life has to offer and don’t sweat the small stuff.  And, as always, treat others as you would want to be treated yourself and you will be just fine!  Make the journey great and remember how much I love you and how proud I am of the person you are.

With all my love,

Mom

The Real Dangers of Middle Age

Sure, we all know that when we approach our late 40’s and 50’s that our chances for heart attack, stroke and diabetes goes up.  Our eyesight diminishes, weight gain occurs and as menopause sets in our chances of osteoporosis increases.  Many organizations now recommend flu shots for anyone over 50 as our immune system begins to weaken and we become more susceptible to viruses.  But what no medical establishment tells you is that there are real and immediate dangers of middle age, the kind that can occur in an instant and stop you in your tracks! 

It is that your head doesn’t realize you are old, causing you to do stupid, jackass, life threatening activities that you took for granted in your twenties.  Only after a few near death experiences do you begin to understand that your body just doesn’t bounce back the way it used to.  Here is my latest “near death” experience that made me realize I am not the spring chicken I once was.

We got my son an indo board so he could practice his balance for hockey.  It was a family affair with each of the kids taking turns trying their hand at balance.  I figured, hey, I used to be a gymnast, that should qualify me for superior balance and I am sure I can show up these little twerps right out of the blocks. 

 

Here is a normal person using the indo board.

I jump on board with all the confidence of a 13 year old and I actually am able to stay on a few seconds.  Each turn I got a bit better.  So after two weeks of more practice, I think it is now time to show off my skills for my mom.  (We never really grow up do we)? 

With my pride intact, I jump aboard in the middle of my living room, where I have huge furniture and hardwood floors.  I am having a great ride and after about 10 seconds decide to shout out “Hey mom, look I still have it”.  Just as I finished my sentence, the board goes to the left and for some odd reason; my body goes to the right.  The board shoots out from underneath me and I catapult in the air like some sort of human cannonball.

 I actually felt like I was flying in slow motion.  As I was in the air I had enough time to contemplate my own death and curse myself out for such a stupid move.  “How could I leave my children this way?”  “Oh god, I hope they don’t submit this story to the TV show 1,000 Ways to Die”?  At some point I jumped back to reality and realized that whatever I did, I had to not hit my head.  So guess what brilliant plan I came up with?  Land in a seating position right on your ass, which is exactly what I did. 

As I crushed down with a thud, my youngest comes running over with eyes wide open trying to help me up and see if I am OK.  Remember my mom?  Well, she is on the couch laughing her ass off…I am not exaggerating.  She is laughing so hard that no noise is coming out of her mouth!  My husband and son?  They are watching a hockey game in the other room and when my daughter goes in to tell them mom had a big wipeout, they say “Yeah, we heard a big crash out there, it sounded bad. We didn’t think it was a good idea that she keeps getting on that thing”.    

That was it!  Literally it! – a mom who has about peed her pants with laughter and a husband /son who think the school of hard knocks applies to me.  As for me, I am still sitting on the ground like a human pretzel hoping that when I stand up I didn’t shrink to a height of 4 feet from my spine compressing in half.  After a few days of hot baths, lots of sore body parts, bitching out my husband and mom multiple times for not taking this seriously, I recover. 

Lession learned.  Glory days over.  I am taking up badminton.   

 

Here is the idiot who invented the Indo Board.  Guess we both met the same fate!

My Strange Addiction

I admit it, I am a reality TV junkie!  I am not even a big TV watcher, but when I do sit down to relax, I suppose I enjoy watching someone else’s train wreck.  There is no other way to say it, but some of these people are just downright crazy. 

My first venture into reality TV was back in the early 90’s with Unsolved Mysteries.  I watched every episode and then some.  The sound of the intro music even got me excited.  When they cancelled the series, I sent an email to the network protesting – I was losing my addiction and I was freaking out.  Thank god for Lifetime reruns.

You can imagine my elation when reality TV came in vogue.  So many choices…I am glad I didn’t have to cheat on my first love, because with the new crop out now, it would have been impossible to stay loyal.  Here are a few of my favorites:

Mystery Diagnosis – I cannot get enough of this show.  Why, I have no idea?  Maybe I secretly want to be a doctor.  Who knows when I may come down with a similar mystery illness that my doctor can’t diagnose?  I may save a life with this knowledge.  My husband wonders why I self diagnosis with every dread disease  -  well, I think we can all thank Mystery Diagnosis for that one.

I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant – Not sure if this one should be classified as a reality show or a comedy show.  We have all heard stories of women who thought they were dying only to drop a baby in a toilet, but watching the re-enactment of several of these woman borders on hysterical.  My favorite was the girl who was having serious stomach cramping but decided to drive two hours to go camping in the middle of nowhere.  We all know where this is going – she delivers a baby in a campground bathroom!  Fortunately for her, a nurse was camping also and saved the day.  Good Lord – all of these women see the writing on the wall after the baby was born.  “Well yeah, I did gain 30 pounds and peed a hundred times a day, but I had no idea I was pregnant?”  You know it is ridiculous but you can’t stop watching.

My Strange Addiction – saw this for the first time last week.  I would have stayed up for the whole marathon but sleep was calling.  The episode I watched was of a lady that was addicted to eating dryer sheets.  I could not make this stuff up – she ate drying sheets all day long.  She said it calmed her.  “Lady, that is why they make Valium, so you don’t have to kill yourself ingesting chemicals all day long”.  Thank god a therapist got involved, and now she is down to two dryer sheets a day.  Even on a bad day, this episode would make me feel like a rock star. 

The next segment was about a grown adult who still wanted to be a baby.  She had an adult size crib, drank out of a bottle, used a pacifier and wore a diaper 24/7.  She brought a friend along on a shopping excursion to help her find clothes that would hide her diapers.  All I could think of was how much could she possibly be paying this guy to go along with crazy ass adventure and keep a straight face?   She was offered therapy, but decided to turn it down because she didn’t think anything was wrong with this lifestyle?  OMG!  She needs to go live with someone with 6 month old triplets, change about a gazillion diapers, wash another gazillion bottles and she will snap back into reality in no time.

Dance Moms – Here is a good one to watch with your kids, particular if they are dancers like my girls.  Abby is the owner of a Hitler style dance studio, and her students are extremely gifted dancers with mothers who have nothing else to do but hang around the dance studio for six hours a day and complain about how crazy Abby is?  Forget about the crazy dance issues, where are these mothers other kids  everyday for six hours while mom is hanging out at the dance studio? 

I could go on and on, but I think Hoarders – Buried Alive is coming on soon.

Repost if you Agree

My curfew was the street lights, my mom called my name not my mobile, I played outside with friends, not online, if I didn’t eat what mom cooked I didn’t eat, sanitizer didn’t exist, but you COULD get your mouth washed out with soap, I rode a bike with no helmet, getting dirty was OK, and neighbors gave a darn as much as your parents did. Re-post this if you drank from a garden hose and survived.Different variations of this post have been circulating Facebook recently and it made me fondly remember my carefree youth.

Why is it that now as a mother myself, I cannot embrace so many of things I loved about being kid. I can’t decide if the media has made us paranoid, the world really is a scarier place or I have just become a worry wart. Now, don’t get me wrong, I do not classify myself as a helicopter mom, but I am a far cry from the laid back “if they get hurt, they will learn” mom.

Here are my comparisons of the mother I am versus how I was raised:

My curfew was the street lights
THEN: I grew up in a suburban neighborhood in the North Hills of Pittsburgh until I was in 6th grade. We didn’t have street lights, but the local fire siren blew at 6:00PM sharp. When that siren blew, you knew it was time to go home for dinner. Looking back – did the fire siren blow for dinnertime or was it just coincidence and everyone had dinner at 6PM sharp? I’ll have to look into that one.
NOW: I still find myself preparing dinner for 6PM, but then I look around and I am lucky if 3 of the 5 family members are home. Between soccer, tennis, hockey, lacrosse and dance it is about as likely as the sun not shining in Arizona that all 5 of us are home. No need for a siren, no one is outside playing in the neighborhood and if they were we would just set the alarms on their cell phones to alert them it was time to come home.

My mom called my name not my mobile
THEN: If you needed to be home and there was no siren to alert you, your mom stood in the front yard and yelled at the top of her lungs until you or one of your friends heard her. No humiliation – everyone’s mom did it.
NOW: If I stood in the front yard and yelled one of my kids name, I am pretty sure they would check me into the nearest psychiatric facility. Likewise, I would probably do the same if I saw a lady screaming in her front yard and no one was around! And I rarely call my kids on their cells – texts are a much faster way to get a response. Have you ever tried to call your kid on their cell with no answer, then they text you right back and say “Did you just try to call me?” Yes, this is 2011.

I played with my friends outside, not online:
THEN: We lived outside as did every kid from our generation. We played kick the can, hide and go seek, stick ball, made and sold things door to door, had shows for the neighbors complete with tickets and all, played in woods, played in the creek and one time we organized a huge carnival in the empty lot across the street. We were never bored, unless it was raining and we couldn’t play outside! We had an imagination and we used it to the fullest.
NOW: My kids have never been big on video games, but my 13 year old is big on social media. Anything to interact with her friends is a top priority. By the time I was 13, I was the same way, but we just went about it differently. I will say that when she was younger, her and her cousin used their imaginations to the fullest and created a variety of “shows” on every topic known to man. My favorite was the rolling skating show where they started out as hockey players, wearing hockey jerseys passing the puck back and forth, then with a change of music stripped off their hockey jerseys, lost their sticks to the ice skating costumes that were underneath. They also made a boat out of cardboard, decorated it then took it for a test drive in the pool. They have done their own version of the show Chopped and tried to make something edible out of what was in the fridge. I guess their childhood will be filled with different memories but their memories will be just as special. Being online is a part of their lives, but I think we need to look past that and give them credit for their version of “kick the can”.

Sanitizer didn’t exist
THEN: I am pretty sure my mom made me wash my hands before dinner, but it doesn’t stand out as a solid memory. I know she made me bathe – does that count?
NOW: Fortunately, I am not a germaphobe. My rule is if you come into contact with a dead animal, wash your hands. If you have been doing sports and your hands have been touching germy mats or in a disgusting sports glove, wash your hands before you eat. Other than that, we are good to go! Many years ago I remember picking Paige up from kindergarten and one of the moms had a big bottle of Purell that she would squirt in her daughters hand as she exited the classroom. Part of me thought I was a neglectful mom because I didn’t carry Purell with me and the other part of me secretly chuckled because wasn’t the Purell only good until the little girl touched something else? Don’t get me wrong, I admit to being a freak on certain subjects, but getting dirty isn’t one of them.

I rode a bike with no helmet
THEN: 
No explanation needed – there were no helmets. For that matter, I remember driving around in my grandfather’s car and there were little straps on the roof to grab onto if you were making a turn – no seatbelts necessary.
NOW:  Here is one of those areas I admit to being a freak about even though my kids quit wearing helmets years ago.  I do worry they are going to hit a rock and fly off their bike, or god forbid they get hit by a car.  Years ago I remember a story of a kid riding his bike with a helmet and he hit a rock, flew off his bike and hit his head on another rock and died.  That story still bothers me to this day.  I know it was a fluke but nonetheless, this poor child lost his life doing something we always took for granted.  I am sure kids died years ago riding their bike too, but we never heard about it….ignorance can be bliss!

If I didn’t eat what mom cooked I didn’t eat
THEN:  My mom made a home cooked meal every single night.  A protein, a carbohydrate and a vegetable.  I was the best eater in my family, so this wasn’t a hardship for me, but my little brother was another story.  I swear he existed on Slim Jims and those little sticks that were advertised as a complete meal for astronauts. Dinner time was just downright painful.  We had a bench versus chairs and I had the unfortunate fate to have my assigned seat next to him.  Since he was never eating, he had to the pass time somehow, so he would throw food on my plate, fling his arms and inevitable spill milk everywhere, and then stretch across the whole bench so I was hanging on by half a butt cheek.  Everyone’s blood pressure would rise at dinnertime, but we went through the ritual every night.  My dad usually lost his temper at some point during the meal – usually when the milk went flying into someone’s plate of food.  Long after we all excused ourselves, Drew would still be sitting there with a full plate of food that he had no intention of eating.  It didn’t matter how long he sat there, he was not going to break.  There would be threats, timers set, and anything else my mom could think of to get him to eat.  To this day, I don’t remember if my mom slipped him a Slim Jim under the table so he at least had some type of nutrients or if he starved, but that kid had a tough spirit and would not budge.   I, of course, thought it was child abuse, but I was helpless to do anything about it. 

The good news is that he is now a grown adult and hasn’t seemed to suffer the effects of malnutrition. He is still a picky eater, but has expanded his repertoire well beyond Slim Jims.  P.S.  I heard from a family member his 2 year old daughter only eats crackers… oh, the sins of the father. 
NOW:  From the time my kids were little, they always ate what we ate.  I never made them special meals of mac and cheese or chicken nuggets.  All three of my kids were great eaters as toddlers.  As they got older, they decided that certain foods were off limits.  Why, I have no idea, because if you liked something when you were 5 why would you not like it now?  I figure I have bigger fish to fry, so if they want to make themselves something else for dinner, go for it.  Maybe I am suffering from some form of post traumatic stress disorder or maybe I just don’t have the stamina to argue about food.  Either way, I am proud to announce that none of my children have ever eaten a Slim Jim!

Neighbors gave a darn as much as your parents did
THEN:  Boy, this one is so true.  I remember being more afraid of some of the neighbors than my own parents.  One night my friends and I decided to ding dong ditch throughout the neighborhood.  We merrily made our way from house to house giggling as we ran.  We could have gone on for hours but one neighbor stopped us in our tracks.  The owner came out waving some type of gun (I have no idea if it was a pellet gun or a real rifle) yelling for us to identify ourselves so they could tell our parents.  Boy oh boy, not only was he yielding a weapon, but he was threatening to turn us in too.  That adventure turned south on dime, but luckily we managed to get away undetected. 
NOW:  We have the great fortune to live in a neighborhood where it is still neighborly.  We know and socialize with many of our neighbors, but there are probably an equal amount we do not know.  We also have a few neighbors who I would not want my children taking advice or parenting from.  Case in point…I have a neighbor who received two DUI’s before ever leaving the driveway.  If I didn’t see it myself I would have never believed it, but she had such a hard time negotiating the driveway she got her car stuck in a cactus and someone called the police.  The second incident was a little more cut and dry.  She didn’t negotiate the turn out of the garage and ended up over the embankment and into our neighbor’s house.  Enough said – I’ll take full responsibility for the parenting of my own children.  It is safer that way!   

I DID DRINK FROM THE GARDEN HOSE AND HOPE MY KIDS DO TOO!

 

So what if I am Type Z

I have known my entire life I was not a Type A personality. The running joke in our household is that I am a Type Z. I think my Gemini astrological sign and my middle child status killed any chance of that happening. After years of making sorry attempts at being detail oriented and organized, I have finally embraced the fact that I will never be the person who puts receipts in little colored folders. One just needs to look into my handbag at proof of that….I file handbags (with the receipts enclosed) rather than filing folders. Oh, the IRS would have a field day with me!

Since I became a parent over 13 years ago, several other “Type A” mothers have pointed out my many, many flawed ways. “Oh, I would never let my kids play with PlayDoh in their room” or “Do you really let your kids take all their clothes off the hangers to do a fashion show?”, or “Oh my gosh, was that your son that just skateboarded through the house to get out back?”. Yes, Yes, Yes to all the above. Here’s my rule….you can make a mess as long as it entertains you for at least one full hour and you don’t destroy anything in the process.

I was raised in the household where everything was kept to perfection. My mom followed us around with a rag to wipe down any fingerprints that ended up on the wall. She was from an era where it would have been social suicide for a neighbor to drop by unannounced and stumble upon a fingerprint on the banister!  As an 8 year old free spirit, that concept never made much sense to me.

My mom actually thought she had found the perfect solution to change my ways. I was a typical 13 year old whose center of the universe was friends and social activities, certainly not cleaning my room. One day as I was walking home from the bus stop (with 6 of my closest friends) I spotted my house in the distant and something looked “off”. As we approached, I saw all of our trees decorated…with the clothes that had been left on my bedroom floor. Apparently my mom thought a super sized dose of embarrassment would bring me to the other side. What she wasn’t counting on was that instead of embarrassment, I thought it was hilarious! It just wasn’t going to be that easy to bring me to the other side. I don’t exactly remember the details of our conversation but I do know I just kept plugging along as a free spirit, and I never spent any time worrying about the fact that my clothes were not organized by color in the closet.

What I have learned as an adult is that you cannot change your core being and let’s face it, why would you want to? Different personalities make the world go round. As I grew into adulthood, I learned the responsibilities of keeping a house and even though I will never get my kicks out of vacuuming on a daily basis, my house is usually in a presentable condition.

As for the kids, my mom’s wish indeed did come true – to have a child that was messier than me. I spent two hours in my 13 year old’s room yesterday cleaning under her bed (think glasses, popcorn, shoes, trash and other unidentified objects), then on to the closet where I found shoes in a box, clothes in a bin of stuffed animals and more hangars on the floor than on the rods. I couldn’t help but reminisce about the day that I found all my clothes hanging on a tree for all the neighborhood to see and confirming my believe in the saying “what goes around, comes around”.

Tie Dye, Denim and Color

No matter how old I get, or how my style changes, I have always, and will always love tie dye, denim and interesting color combinations. I went through a black phase, but I think that was mostly because it was fast and easy to go into my closet and be able to mix and match my entire wardrobe without a second thought.

Who doesn’t remember their first time at camp or at a birthday party when tie dying was the craft. The anticipation of the results when you unbanded your shirt was almost as good as opening up a present on Christmas. I still get that feeling today when I create a new piece or dream up color combinations late at night and then have to try it out first thing in the morning.

I have never been much of a “hippie” tie dye fanatic. I prefer muted colors and sophistated color combinations for a subtle look over the bold primary spiral tie dyes. To me, the best thing about tie dye is the endles possibilities!

Now onto denim…there really isn’t much to say other than denim is quite possibily the best invention of all time. You can dress it up, dress it down, lounge around, do yard work, and so on and so on. I am a true believer that there are a few things in life that you just have to spend money on and the perfect pair of jeans are one of them. Don’t be surprised if you see Juley Jules coming out with a line of denim jeans at some point in the future.

Juley Jules has expanded into other unique dye treatments such as dip dying, circle dying and various washes, but we will always have a classic tie dye in each season – just because I will always love tie dye!

Just for Moms – Funny Stuff!

A friend passed this on via email and I have read it several times and it is still funny. I wish I knew who wrote this so I give them credit. You may have seen this, but I thought I would post it on our blog, even though it has nothing to do with Juley Jules. Sometimes we just need a good laugh:

You’ve heard about people who have been abducted and had their kidneys removed by black-market organ thieves. My thighs were stolen from me during the night a few years ago. I went to sleep and woke up with someone else’s thighs. It was just that quick. The replacements had the texture of cooked oatmeal. Whose thighs were these and what happened to mine? I spent the entire summer looking for my thighs. Finally, hurt and angry, I resigned myself to living out my life in jeans. And then the thieves struck again.

My butt was next. I knew it was the same gang, because they took pains to match my new rear-end to the thighs they had stuck me with earlier. But my new butt was attached at least three inches lower than my original! I realized I’d have to give up my jeans in favor of long skirts. Two years ago I realized my arms had been switched. One morning I was fixing my hair and was horrified to see the flesh of my upper arm swing to and fro with the motion of the hairbrush. This was really getting scary – my body was being replaced one section at a time. What could they do to me next?

When my poor neck suddenly disappeared and was replaced with a turkey neck, I decided to tell my story. Women of the world wake up and smell the coffee! Those ‘plastic’ surgeons are using REAL replacement body parts – stolen from you and me! The next time someone you know has something ‘lifted’, look again – was it lifted from you?

P. S. Last year I thought someone had stolen my Boobs. I was lying in bed and they were gone! But when I jumped out of bed, I was relieved to see that they had just been hiding in my armpits as I slept. Now I keep them hidden in my waistband.

Gracie to the Rescue!

My strong suit has always been working under pressure.  During college, my best work was done the night before something was due, but now that I am older and a business owner, I try really hard to manage my time effectively.  That doesn’t take away from the fact that I enjoy deadlines, I just don’t enjoy pulling  ”all nighters” anymore – infants cured me of that!

Our Spring 2010 samples were due to arrive from production two weeks in advance of being due at our showrooms.  Plenty of time to round up our models, take photo’s, tag samples and send via UPS Ground.  Since most plans never go according to “plan” we were not surprised when the production houses were over a week late.  Only problem was, the models were not available the following week, leaving me to find a size 6 model in the midst of summer vacation. 

To the rescue – Gracie!  Beautiful Gracie is the daughter of a friend and coworker, and also in my daughter’s 4th grade class - but would she fit into the sample sizes?  Thank goodness for good genetics and a petite frame.  Gracie fits and looks beautiful in many sizes, but she seemed skeptical when I told her that she would be so thankful for that as she got older.  But then again, who at age 9, worries about a muffin top after child birth? 

In true fashion, we completed the photo shoot, had the samples packed up and ready for the showrooms on time despite late production.  Gracie competely came through for Juley Jules and took home some souveniors for all her hard work.    Per Gracie, the hardest part of the day was putting on the dresses -GASP!  Yes, Gracie prefers pants and tees to the girly stuff, but we are sure once she sees herself in these gorgeous outfits she will come over to the other side!