#1 A new mommy that is looking to redefine her style asks where I shop.
Most of my clothes come from just a few stores: JCrew, Gap, Target or if it’s something trendy that I wont wear very long I’ll buy something at Old Navy (their stuff often doesn’t last long). The black and white dress from the party was from Ann Taylor. I find lots of cute stuff at Target, but again it’s generally poorly made. Classic stuff that I know I’ll wear a long time I get at JCrew.
#2 Yes, this is a niece not a sister. But I often will claim all my nieces as my little sisters since it feels that way sometimes and often when I'm talking to my kids about one of my nieces I'll accidentally call them Aunt Alex...
#3 & 4 There are five girls and three boys in my family with 22 years between me and the oldest (Greg). Here you go Paula, a picture of my big bro. I got the best of both worlds; I come from a big family but since I'm so much younger then all of them (I was the only one living at home by the time I was in middle school) I also felt like an only child.
#5 We were celebrating my sister Nancy's 50th birthday. We surprised her with the sisters & Greg on Friday night (because it was really hard for all of us to stay in hiding) and the big party with everyone was on Sunday night. Nancy is probably the most generous person I know and like the other sisters she is amazingly creative; however, she also got this crazy business sense along with that and is combining the two traits into a fabulous catering business and shop (to go along with their other two restaurants).
#6 My dad is not shown because he died when I was in middle school. However, if you want to know exactly what he looked like see the above picture of Greg. I will henceforth be calling Greg "Lil Irvin". Actually, I was so very blessed, not only did I have three big brothers to worry about me I also had big brothers-in-law that were amazing male figures in my life. Seriously, two own their own businesses and the other two were Naval Academy grads and pilots. John was available to question and intimidate boys that would come pick me up for dates and then he walked me down the aisle on my wedding day. My girls think of him and Lorie as grandparents.
#7 Two of my brothers were not able to make it to the party, we missed you Bruce and Joe!
#8 I LOVE coming from a big family, it's probably the greatest gift my parents could have given me (since I was the last one I'm especially grateful for all those kids). I however could not do it so no I will not be having a family like that. I do not know how my mom did it, it is a question that often goes through my mind several times a day...usually around dramatic bedtime routines and anytime the girls fight over something.
#9 & #10 Yes, I am originally a Florida girl where I could wear skirts and sandals year round. I took a semester off in college and was living with my sister Lorie (and John and their family) where I met and eventually married Brian. After we were married he was accepted to a business school in Boston and so I finished college up there.
I think that covers them all. This was fun, please send all your relationship questions, fashion dilemmas and decorating dilemmas to Ask The Paper Chick.