Monday, June 30, 2014

The Video Diaries: Operation Naturally Curly

This, my lovely readers, has officially been deemed the summer of curly.

I think.



So I did it. And since my roots aren't even dry as I type this, the jury's still out about how exactly I feel about my new makeover. (Or is it a make-under?) 

I still don't recognize myself in the mirror -- and when I do gaze at my reflection, I love it one moment, and then hate it the next. 

My hair is just so...I don't know...BIG.

Check out my video diary below, which was shot within an hour of getting out of the shower...

So what do you think? WARNING: Unflattering reviews will be deleted. 
I'm JOKING! (Sort of.)

Join us on Facebook and Instagram. :-)

Friday, June 27, 2014

5 Easy Tips for Longer Hair

It’s been said that hair growth is hereditary. That no matter what you do, the length your hair will grow is ultimately predetermined by genetics. Whether (or not) this is true, one thing is for sure: Growth is only one component of hair length. No matter how long your hair grows, if you treat it like crap and zap it of all its moisture, it’ll fray like the hem on a pair of blue jean cut-offs.

And your objective of achieving length will go up in smoke.

Unless you follow a few key steps. Easy steps.

I’ve been fortunate that my hair has always grown fast and can accumulate length with relative ease. But I also maintain that the following steps have conspired to make my hair the healthiest – and longest – it has ever been…

1.       Less is more
I know that styling aides – sprays, gels, pomades, etc. – can be a Godsend when it comes to taming your tresses. But sometimes these products are not all that they’re cracked up to be. Read the labels. Virtually anything with alcohol as the primary ingredient should be used sparingly, if at all (never, in my case). Why? Alcohol is the anti-Christ. It will dry your hair out like the dickens, and dry hair equals brittle hair. And brittle hair breaks.

2.       Sleep with satin
About a month ago or so, I preached the merits of sleeping on a satin pillowcase (which you can find here). I have been sleeping on one – every single night – for nearly 10 years. The reason is that cotton, much like alcohol, dries the hair out – not to mention the damage that comes as a result of your strands rubbing against cotton as you toss and turn all night. No, thank you.

3.       Just a little off the bottom
Of all the tips on this list, I wholeheartedly admit to half-stepping on this one. I mean, I do trim my hair, although not at all as often as I should. (I do it myself with a pair of relatively inexpensive shears I bought from Sally’s Beauty Supply.) I shudder when I hear people say that regular trims help your hair to grow. That’s poppycock. Hair growth stems from the scalp – not the ends. However, trimming your hair can help you accumulate length because removing the dead and splitting ends prevents breakage, thereby paving the way for longer hair. You don’t have to take off a lot. Just take off something periodically. (I’m overdue for a trim myself right now…)

4.       You can’t take the heat
Virtually nothing can damage your hair faster than styling appliances, particularly curling irons and flat irons. I’m not saying give them up completely. (I know I couldn’t). I’m just not an advocate of using them often or using them on dry hair. Confession: When I conduct my salon-grade blowouts that I speak so highly of on this blog, I use a tourmaline flat iron on its absolute highest setting. That sucker could melt flesh in a nano-second. But I only use my flat iron for the blowout, which lasts several days. I never use my flat iron in between washes, and I would not – I repeat: I. Would. Not. – use any appliance every day. Unless, of course, you want to burn your hair to a crisp.

5.       Easy does it
I remember reading – somewhere – about a woman who brushed her hair using upwards of 50 strokes every day. All I can say is that I hope her brush had soft boar bristles. Otherwise, I’m betting dollars to donuts that she had so many strands of hair at her feet after this brushing episode that she probably thought she was standing on a shag rug. I own a brush. One. And I go months without using it. I use my fingers and wide-tooth pick to detangle and style my hair. Less manipulation equals less pulling…which equals less breakage.

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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Video Diaries: Closet Relics – Part Three

So here we are.

The end of Closet Relics Road.

This is the third -- and final -- installment in this series in which I regale you lovely readers on the things that are as old as dirt but still have tremendous staying power. (You can find the first video here, and the second here.)

In the following video, I reveal my absolute favorite mainstays, which may very well surprise you...

This post is also linked up to #FashionFriday, which is co-hosted by Audrey McClellan of Mom Generations. I've been reading Audrey's blog for years now, and first became aware of her by way of Chicken Soup for the Soul when Audrey interviewed me for in celebration of a Chicken Soup for the Soul promotion they were running back in 2011...

What is the one thing in your closet that you absolutely, positively cannot live without?


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Monday, June 23, 2014

The Video Diaries: Closet Relics – Part Two

On the heels of Part One of this series comes this next round of sartorial mainstays.

And now we’re getting down to the nitty-gritty.

I kid you not, if someone were to make the poor choice to try and remove one of the following items from my closet against my will…well, let’s just say they may just draw back a nub. Or leave my closet empty-handed with a black eye. Not that I condone violence. I don’t.

But I also don’t advise messing with these treasures of mine because, make no mistake, they are here to stay...

This post is also linked up to #FashionFriday, which is co-hosted by Audrey McClellan of Mom Generations. I've been reading Audrey's blog for years now, and first became aware of her by way of Chicken Soup for the Soul when Audrey interviewed me for in celebration of a Chicken Soup for the Soul promotion they were running back in 2011...

I'll be back on Wednesday with my most coveted relics for the final installment in this series, but in the meantime, what are the vintage treasures currently hanging in your closet?


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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

#PoolProblems: Would you have complained?

See that jovial boy pictured above, eager and excited about swim class?

I want him to remain that way.

Scotty recently began is second session of tot swim, and despite the fact that more than a year had passed since the first session he took back when he was just one year old, he hadn’t missed a beat.  He approached the pool with vigor and gusto and remained equally enthusiastic after he had entered the water.

He’s got a new instructor this time around, Kevin, whom both Scotty and I liked immediately. Kevin was fun and engaging and full of Jedi mind tricks, such as singing songs like “Five Little Monkeys” to get the kids to willingly put their faces underwater. He was the cherry on top of an already ideal scenario.

Until he wasn’t: One day we came to class and were told that Kevin was no longer with the program. A woman – I’ll call her “Bambi” – delivered this news to us and then informed us that she’d be instructing from now on.

Can I be honest? I didn’t get a good vibe from Bambi from Jump Street. But I quieted my instinct and let it ride. Give her a chance, said my voice of reason.

When we all entered the water – a parent is required to accompany his or her child in the pool – it was all downhill from there. There was no singing, there was no clapping, and Bambi’s incessant demands made me wonder if we had registered for tot swim or a preliminary class for those aiming to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Summer Games in Rio. After she basically strong-armed Scotty to hold both ears underwater for a specified amount of time, I saw a look of trepidation in his eyes that haunted me. I know that in order to grow and advance that Scotty has to take risks, but I also know that there is such a thing as moving too fast and, as a result, making him unnecessarily uncomfortable.

He’s two. This is supposed to be fun.

Our second class with Bambi was no different. Wait. Yes, it was: It was worse. It was like Bambi was giving a big, fat “up yours” to my voice of reason.

That was it. I called management. Basically, I was told in no uncertain terms that Bambi was not their ideal choice as a fill-in instructor (No! Really?), but that they had been left in a lurch by Kevin up and leaving, yadda, yadda, yadda.

I bet you dollars to donuts that I wasn’t the first parent to complain.

They offered to enroll Scotty – free of charge – in the summer session, which starts in a few weeks – and I was assured that this new class would be led by a more child-friendly instructor. I agreed, and that was that.

We’re not returning to Bambi’s class.

I’m not one to complain. I hated to do it, and the old me – the “BC” me (Read: Before Children) – probably wouldn’t have. But when it comes to my children…don’t even get me started on my readiness to pounce when I feel that something doesn’t pass the smell test. Hell, Bambi is lucky I decided not to bring my brass knuckles to class. (The chlorine would have wreaked havoc on them.)

How would you have handled this? Have you complained about a service, particularly one geared toward your child? 

P.S. Thank you to everyone who read and commented on Monday's Operation Naturally Curly post. I've completed step one by running to Sally's Beauty Supply, Target, and Walgreens and spending a king's ransom on necessary product. (Curly ain't cheap; that's for sure.) We've got a family event this weekend that I want to remain in straight-hair-mode for (with my vain self), but I'm going to take the plunge sometime around the start of Scotty's next round of swim classes. I'll keep you posted...


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Monday, June 16, 2014


I never, ever thought I’d pose the question above – let alone pen a post about it. But a toddler swim class has a way of changing things.

Look at the photo above. It’s perfect: A camera-happy hubby (Scott) took this candid shot of his unsuspecting expectant wife (me) while she cuddled with their then only child (Scotty).

But I’m not referring to that. (As a side note, would you look at the rack I had back then? Jeez. But I digress…)

Look at my hair. My straight hair.

This is how I have rolled. For years.

The question of the moment is this: Do I stop straightening my hair for a while – during the summer months – and – GASP! – wear my hair in its natural style of wildly curly ringlets?

Here’s the deal: Scotty should have been done with his swim classes by now, but we were given an opportunity to attend the next session free of charge (more on that in Wednesday’s post). So I’m basically staring another eight weeks of pool time down the barrel…and then right after Scotty’s class ends, Kennedy’s will start up.

This all boils down to the fact that – for 16 straight weeks – my tedious yet coveted salon-grade blow-outs will all be for naught.

Unless I stop doing them and wear my hair…I can’t even believe I am typing this… in its naturally curly state, which is, for me, akin to venturing into uncharted waters (pun intended).

After combing over countless YouTube curly-hair-wash-and-go tutorials, I think I’ve found the system/products that will give me the results I’m looking for. I think. I won’t know until I try.

I’ve beat my hair into submission for a long, long time. After getting my blow-out method down to a science and then wearing my hair straight for all these years, I know how to deal with my hair while straight. I have it under control. To the contrary, I don’t know how to tame my wild, curly hair. Hell, for all I know, the tables could turn and my hair might be the one beating me into submission. Yeah, I’m kind of afraid…but also really, really intrigued by the prospect of changing things up – and liking it.

Sigh. Decisions, decisions.

Of course, should I take the plunge and go curly, of course I’ll have to post a video diary showing the results...

UPDATE: Click here to see the outcome of #OperationNaturallyCurly.
But I warn you: There is BIG hair ahead...

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Friday, June 13, 2014

Five Things I Love about Being a Dad

So as the final installment in this week’s Father’s Day Week series, I offer you this piece written by my husband Scott, the father of our children Scotty and Kennedy. Let me go right ahead and call this for what it is: A blatant attempt to tug at your heart strings.

Several weeks ago, when I became inspired to post a week of content dedicated to fathers, I enlisted Scott to write down the top five things he loves about being a dad. I’ll have you know that since giving him this assignment, I have in no way influenced the following responses. Rather, after I had nursed Kennedy in the wee morning hours one day last week, I returned to our bedroom to find Scott at the desk in our bedroom, deep in thought with pen in hand. Here’s what his paper read…

1.       Being present for Scotty and Kennedy’s birth. Seeing the children that I helped create come into this world.
It’s something that I’ll always cherish, and it’s something every father should experience. If a man is ever afraid, or doubts whether or not he would want to see such a thing, he should reconsider. It will probably be the greatest moment of his life…because it was mine.

2.       Sharing the responsibilities of providing and caring for my son and daughter.
It makes me feel important, that I have a purpose in this world…and that purpose is to guide and provide for their well-being. Being there for them – everyday – is not only my greatest accomplishment, it is also my greatest contribution to this world.

3.       Being called Dad, Da’, or Da-da.
I literally warms my heart when I hear Scotty and Kennedy call me any of those variations. Just the other morning, I walked into Scotty’s room to get him up, and he goes. “Oh, hi, Da’!” And Kennedy is starting to say Da-Da now, too.  I feel proud. It hits home. It grounds me. It is an affirmation that I am their dad.

4.       Seeing my children’s joy and hearing their laughter.
When I see their happiness, in that instant, it becomes my happiness. Seeing them smile – just their smile – makes everything I do worth it.

5.       Loving my son and daughter more than anyone I’ve ever known.
I love my wife; I love my mother. But the love I possess for my children far exceeds anything that I could ever comprehend. It’s so unyielding and unconditional. At the risk of sounding morbid, it’s the kind of love that you would take with you to your grave.

Check out our Father's Day giveaways here and here!
Happy Father's Day to all the wonderful dads!

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Friday, June 6, 2014

I’ve got job security. And you do, too.

If you’re a mom, you’re probably going to relate to what I have to say. And if you don’t have children, stick around because I’m going to bring you into the fold in a minute…

As the Conover household's Director of Operations, I love my job but wholeheartedly admit to bitching and moaning about the incessant demands:

I'm the last one in bed at night, yet the first one up in the morning; I don't get sick days; and you already know my strong disdain for laundry. And don’t even get me started about the fact that if I even so much as attempt to write a blog post in the presence of both children, my son commences to climbing on me like a human jungle gym, and my daughter suddenly needs to be nursed.

But guess what? For all of my bellyaching and bemoaning, I know I’ve got staying power. My children are not going to wake up one morning and say, “You know what? Your services are no longer needed here, mom. So, thanks, but, you’ve just been released.”

Nope. Like me or not – and I’d like to believe that, for the most part, they like me – mama isn’t going anywhere.

But the same can’t be said for an NFL football player.

Like any position in the private sector, job security is shaky, at best, and playing professional football is no different. But I think people would be surprised to know the alarming rate at which NFL players have to look over their shoulders – and on a daily basis, no less – because threats abound.

A few weeks ago, the NFL hosted its annual draft. There were cheers, and hugs, and high-fives all around by the draftees and their families, because it was assumed that after said player had jumped the tremendous hurdle of getting drafted, it will all be smooth sailing from there. The player had managed to beat tremendous odds, after all: While there are hundreds of college football teams, there are only 32 NFL teams; and while a college team is comprised of 85 scholarship players and an unlimited number of walk-ons, the absolute total number of players on an NFL team is only 53.

But at the end of the draft, the average NFL team has about 85 players on its roster.

You do the math: Players will be cut at training camp – before the season even begins.

And even if a player manages to make it through camp, the aforementioned threats are large, looming, and, frankly, never-ending. Let’s pretend for a moment you are an NFL player. Let me break down why you should be afraid. Very afraid:

The Work-out Threat: A draft is the most popular means an NFL team obtains players, but it is far from the only means. Team personnel “work-out” (read: audition) players all year round for the purpose of having another player on speed-dial in case you become injured.

The Free Agent Threat: Let’s say a player comes to the end of his contract, yet is still able-bodied and ready to play. He now becomes a free agent, which means he is free to become signed by any team, at any time. And he could be coming to your team to take your spot.

The New Coach Threat: What if a team gets a new head coach? He is likely to bring with him new ideas, new philosophies, and, sometimes, the recommendation that the team sign players from his previous team.

The Injury Threat: This scenario is sure to make your head spin: An NFL team typically employs six wide receivers. Let’s say one gets hurt, and the remaining five are not 100%. So that means it is imperative that your team replace the one that is injured. But your team is still employing the injured guy – even though he isn’t playing at the moment, and if your team obtains his replacement, then the team be at 54 players when they can only have 53 on the roster. What happens now? Team personnel start sniffing around in other areas of your team, and they find that they are heavy in the offensive lineman department – the position you play: the team only needs eight linemen, but they currently have nine. So they hand you your walking papers. This game of musical chairs happens. All. The. Time. 

The Upgrade Threat: Let’s say you drive a 2010 BMW. It runs fine, you still love it, and you are happy with it…but you are presented with the opportunity to buy a 2014 BMW – for less. Why wouldn’t you want a younger, shinier version of the car you’ve already got? NFL scouts are no different.

The bottom line is this: While this is the day-to-day reality of playing in the NFL, these are factors that, thankfully, I needn’t worry about. I’ve got my position as Mama on lock. And even if you’re not a mother, you may enjoy the same security – perhaps you just haven’t looked at your situation from the proper perspective. Whether you are a daughter, sister, caregiver, or the truest friend someone may have, there is a certain comfort in knowing that you are needed, that you are wanted, that things will fall apart without you, and, ultimately, that you make all the difference.

There is no feeling in the world akin to the validation that you are not only a first-round draft choice, you are the only draft choice.

I will remind myself of this, of course, at 3:18 a.m. when my daughter gets up for her first of three middle-of-the-night feedings, or when my son crashes my already too-short shower by abruptly pelting me with his Little People while proclaiming that it is “bathy time” for them, too.

Can I get a woot-woot!?
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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Inexpensive, invaluable gifts for expectant mothers

I actually hemmed and hawed about whether to write this post – let alone feature it on this blog. But because I’ve deemed May the unofficial start of Baby Shower Season, and I find these items so very helpful and unique, I couldn’t resist…

Having had my toe in the pregnancy/infant/toddler waters for more than thirty consecutive months now – I’ve been either pregnant, nursing, or changing diapers (and at some point doing two out of the three) since the tail end of 2010 – trust me, I know what it takes at all three stages to get the job done.

I usually subscribe to the notion that baby shower invitees should stick to the plan and purchase only the items the mother-to-be has on her registry. But then, little does the mother-to-be know that she won’t use 43 receiving blankets and equally as many packs of pacifiers – even at the newborn stage. I wished someone had purchased the following two items for me when I was expecting, but I ended up buying them myself:
Mexican Bola Ball Pendant
First up, we have the Mexican bola ball pendant. I wore one of these for my entire pregnancy with Kennedy – even before she grew ears in utero. (I was five months pregnant with her in the above photo of my mom, Scotty, and me taken at the Detroit Zoo during a field trip with Scotty's playgroup.) The bola ball necklace is an old Mexican tradition in which pregnant women wear a ball with a chime inside a pendant on a very long chain. The pendant reaches just below the mother’s belly button, and at around the 18th week of pregnancy, the baby begins to hear the sound of the chime. The mother can continue to wear the pendant on a shorter chain once the baby is born, so the sound of the chime can continue to soothe and comfort the baby – I actually wore mine when I nursed Kennedy for the first time when she was just minutes old. Before Scott and I even conceived Kennedy, I purchased my bola ball and pendant from eBay for $8 here, and when I learned that we were indeed having a girl, I ordered an additional ball (for $6) – in the color pink – from a different eBay listing by the same vendor, here.
Bathroom caddy
I initially bought one of these back in the summer of 1995, when I was about to embark on my new life as a college freshman at the University of Michigan: Living in a dorm with a community bathroom meant that I needed something to contain my toothbrush, soap, and other toiletries when I schlepped to the showers every morning. I wished I had kept this five-dollar piece of molded plastic, because if I knew then what I know now, I could have told myself that the last thing I will want to do at two weeks postpartum is haul the baby back and forth to the nursery for every God-forsaken diaper change. Rather, it would be much more convenient to use this caddy as a portable diaper changing station: Simply load this sucker up with diapers, wipes, diaper balm, fold-up changing pad, and voila! But, no. I had to learn this the hard way and run out to buy one when Scotty was just days old. I ended up buying a second one when Kennedy was born so that I could have an additional diaper changing station in our bedroom. You can find these caddies everywhere, including Walmart, Meijer, and Kmart. (I bought both of mine from Home Goods.)

What items were invaluable to you when you were an expectant or new mom?

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Monday, June 2, 2014


I was so happy for Scott and me to be going out on the heels of the NFL Hall of Fame Dinner, that as we drove down the I-94 freeway, I swear, the thought crossed my mind to lower the passenger car window and scream, “We’re the parents of two under three…and WE’VE ESCAPED! We’re GOING OUT!!!! And the kids are AT HOME!!!!! And don’t ask me for goldfish crackers, anti-bacterial wipes, or a clean bib, because I have no such thing in this clutch!! ”

Scott and I were en route to Ford Field (again); this time to attend the annual Taste of the Lions, where gourmet food from the finest local restaurants, professional football players, and die-hard fans all collide amid the backdrop of an NFL stadium.

And the night was, in a word, nothing short of awesome. I didn’t have time to do a video diary of my preparations beforehand (like I did for the NFL Hall of Fame Dinner here), but I’ll tell you that my ensemble was pretty vanilla: No Spanx, no girdle. My shoes were a pair of Jessica Simpson 2 ½-inch mules I purchased from TJ Maxx back in 2007 during my career days, and my dress was a little A-line shift dress from Isaac Mizrahi’s Target line that I bought off eBay for less than $20 (with the tags attached; score!)

So let’s get down to the good stuff! I present to you the photographs from this wonderful evening – in precisely the order they were taken:

Carted away
The night starts with a bang, or shall I say Vrrrooooom: As soon as Scott and I turn the corner onto Brush, the street on which Ford Field resides, and drop our car off at valet, we are whisked onto one of several golf carts reserved for both current and former Lions players. We are driven down the tunnel that leads onto the football field, but then re-routed to a special elevator that leads to a VIP lounge designated solely for current Lions players, staff, and alumni. This “selfie” of Scott and me was taken right before we jumped into the elevator. (I briefly thought about puckering my lips and flashing the peace sign, but my voice of reason kicked in and told me that it would not have been cute for a 37 year-old mother-of-two to pose like a 13 year-old, so I ultimately decided against it.)

Just like old times
Scott and I quickly ditch the VIP lounge in favor of mingling among the ever-growing throng of guests. The first familiar face we see is former Detroit Lions defensive tackle Luther Elliss, whom Scott played with for several years of his career.

Bon appetit
Next, we run into Joe Nader, the Executive Chef of the Detroit Lions. Very important is this man, as he oversees every aspect of food in Ford Field, including the suites, the restaurants, the concessions, and catering. Chef Nader always takes care of Scott and me when we see him and is the absolute best as far as hospitality goes.

We then make our way to the locker room – as in the official locker room where the Detroit Lions suit up on Sunday – but today it’s the site of another private VIP hideaway. And guess who’s holding court outside the entrance? Mixologists from Sugar House, Detroit’s premier cocktail lounge. They’re whipping up a one-of-a-kind drink just for tonight called The Brush Street Cooler: El Jimador Blanco tequila, blue caracoa, house made ginger syrup, cinnamon syrup, and fresh lime juice, all of which is shaken to perfection and poured over ice. I had every intention of taking a picture of my glass so you could see how pretty this drink was, but, alas, my thirst got the best of me and before I knew it, it was gone.

Suited up
This is what an actual locker of a Detroit Lions player looks like. With its recessed lighting, sleek woodwork, and plush carpeting, it resembles a state-of-the-art conference room and is nothing like a conventional locker room where one might find metal benches and the stench of athlete’s foot.

Lights, camera…
As soon as Scott and I exit the locker room (where we devoured the most delectable grilled prawn – YUM!), we run into this gentleman, Bill Keenist, Senior Vice President of Communications for the Lions. His title sounds Big Time because it is: Bill is the team’s chief spokesman on organizational matters and also leads the team’s football communications initiatives. He was a member of Lions personnel back when Scott played, too, so he and Scott go way back.

On the air
Bill asks Scott and me if we want to meet Jim Caldwell, the brand new head coach of the Detroit Lions. Of course, we do! So Scott and I hang tight while Coach Caldwell wraps up his interview with 97.1 FM The Ticket, which is airing live as we watch.

Put me in coach
Then, our photo op arrives: Coach Caldwell, Scott, and me.

Cool cat
In search of more food – we here that that a vendor, somewhere, is offering the best macaroni and cheese this side of the Mississippi, Scott and I head back out and endure the crush of equally hungry party-goers. And that’s when we see this guy, Rory, the official mascot of the Detroit Lions. Man, his teeth are white.

Sweet branding
Those outside of Detroit may not know this, but the Detroit Lions are owned by the Ford family, who also owns Ford Motor Company, hence the name of the stadium, Ford Field. (What I wouldn’t give for one of those cupcakes right now…)

Here’s the beef
Mmmmmmmm. Filet sliders from Prime 29.

It’s the cheesiest
Mac ‘n cheese from Slows Bar B Q. I may never want to eat the boxed variety again.

Michigan royalty
Tired from having trekked the length of Ford Field, Scott and I come full circle and head back to where we started: the VIP lounge for current Lions players, staff, and alumni. As soon as we collapse in the nearest pair of brown buttery leather couch chairs for a much-needed breather, Bill calls us over to a table where a quiet petite woman is holding court with security detail nearby. “Come over here and say hi to Mrs. Ford.” Mrs. Ford? I repeat to myself. Yes, Mrs. Ford. As in Martha Firestone Ford, the owner of the Detroit Lions, and, of course, the owner of the company that made the car we drove here in tonight. When we arrived at her table and Bill introduced Scott as a former player and me as his wife, Mrs. Ford actually rose from her chair to shake our hands. She was kind, down-to-earth, and the farthest thing from pretentious. (Some backstory: Mrs. Ford only recently became the owner and chairwoman of the Lions after the passing of her husband, William Clay Ford Senior, the last surviving grandchild of Henry Ford, founder of Ford Motor Company. Mr. Ford purchased the Lions in 1963 and was the owner for Scott’s entire career.)

The trifecta
Scott and I were all but ready to leave the VIP lounge and head out to valet, when we run into these guys, who, like us, were just looking to take a break from the crowds and regroup: (From left): Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson, aka "Megatron," (#81), Detroit Lions quarterback Matt Stafford (#9), and Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush (#21).

One last thing: This was all for a great cause. Taste of the Lions extends the league’s own Taste of the NFL program which began in 1992. The Taste of the NFL is held the night before the Super Bowl in the hosting city and brings together the country’s top chefs to raise funds for local food banks. Proceeds of Taste of the Lions will benefit Detroit's Eastern Market and the Lions’ community outreach programming, which improves access to fresh food options in underserved areas.

And there you have it. Our evening in pics! Oh! And one more thing: Congratulations to Heather S., the winner of the Smooth as Silk 100% Silk Charmeuse Pillowcase giveaway! Please keep reading! More awesome giveaways are on tap for the coming weeks...

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