New and Improved Blog

November 1, 2009 - Leave a Response

I’m moving…I’m taking this first attempt at blogging and raising it up a notch.

I Do Declare has gotten a new look – and you can find it here.  Please come visit me at my new site!


Legally Blond, Two

July 11, 2009 - 2 Responses


Funemployment has ended.  I  have  a job…a new old job. I worked in Congress a few years ago, and when my old boss called asking if I’d like to return….after 10 months of living the lazy life, how could I say no?  I’m back to doing the people’s work on Capitol Hill. Cafeteria lunches. High heels. Tourists.  I am, admittedly, red, white and blue over all the free time I will lose now that I’ve become a working girl, but I’m tickled pink at the thought of income…health insureance, retirement, and all the benefits that come with the 9 to 5. My first week went really well….but I am exhausted!!!! Tracking legislation is SO much more tiring than tracking the lives of the One Tree Hill cast!

Sneak Peak!

June 30, 2009 - One Response

I fell in love with my wedding invitation long before I fell in love with the man I’ll soon marry….

When I got engaged, I didn’t immediatly know what kind of dress I would wear,  I still can’t decide about flowers but I have always had a clear vision of  how my wedding invitation would look. While there are all kinds of styles these days that fit all sorts of personalities,  my preference remains traditional and classic (and luckily for me and my vision Dan could care less about such decisions).  Since one understated, beautiful card arrived in my mailbox back in 1999 I have longed to send out handwritten invitations to my own wedding.  I had never received one before, and haven’t received one since!

 I spent months searching for a caligrapher to create ours. Those in my budget wouldn’t take on the challenge, and those out of my budget were…well, unaffoardable. Luckily for me, some boards led me to newcomer Kelly Rega of Calligraphy by Kelly Ann who was brave enough to take to the ink with all the formal details of our big day. It is so fun to work with Kelly! I won’t reveal the full look, of course, on the off chance that you too get excited at the arrival of pretty papers, but I could not resist sharing just a peak at Kelly’s beautiful penmenship.

invite 002

Country Fancy

June 29, 2009 - Leave a Response

I love all things – especially food- that are dressed up, but still downhome….just wait to you see my wedding reception! That is why this recipe in the July issue of Southern Living really caught my eye….Baked Bean Crostinis.

Photo Credit: Southern Living

Photo Credit: Southern Living

I’m pretty sure they’d be a hit back home in Tennessee, but I don’t know if these country crusts could compete against crab dip here in Maryland…Here is the recipe if you’d like to try, where ever you are!

Something Blue…

June 26, 2009 - Leave a Response

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In just one week from today I have my first wedding dress fitting. In just three months from today I will be wearing my dress!   No one will see this sweet monogram that will be sewn inside, so I am showing it to you now.  My initials, my wedding date, my Something Blue…I love it so much.  I ordered it from (where else?) Etsy, from a seller called LJO Embroidary  who adorns all kinds of beautiful keepsakes, and it was only $10!  Wouldn’t it be the perfect present to give to a bride, maybe on the day she goes dress shopping? Love, love, love it!


Blog Love

June 25, 2009 - 3 Responses

I’m back and blogging, but during the month while I was not writing on my own page, I  spent ample time checking in on the lives of others. Mostly strangers…but women, younger and older than I,  who I find amusing because they are interested in the same things that I am interested.  Do you know how comforting it is to know other people set  a frilly tables and photography it Just Because? It gives me such peace realizing I am not alone in my preoccupation with presentation. It is very strange how one can start to regulary follow the lives of people you don’t even know….it’s like people watching but a zillion times better!

Here are a few great blogs I happened upon and now count as favorites:

Gracious Southern Living – This blogger hearts black and white, burlap, monograms and took time out of a weekend escape to visit the grave of Jon Benet – it was like I was looking at myself in 20 years…how I hope I am this fun!

Between Naps on the Back Porch  – First, what a sweet name?? I love it! But I’m guessing this blogger doesn’t snooze all too much  because she’s way too busy setting the most terrific tables.  She’s even inspired a Tablescape Thursday in the blog world that has women all over the internet pulling out their good china in the name of Themes – adorable! I am obsessed with finding these little chairs to copy what she’s done for displaying dessert – don’t you love it??

These are really candle holders - how resourceful!  Photo Credit: Between Naps On The Porch

These are really candle holders - how resourceful! Photo Credit: Between Naps On The Porch

Glamourous Life of a Housewife:  Whitney is the name of this glam wife and mommy, and she’s so happy and sparkly I bet she glows in the dark! She also shares yummy recipes  (Dan loved this one) and fabulous pictures of parties her mom throws with cute ideas  I love to steal. I found this blog Google  imaging “baby shower” and fell in love with this one. We both share a love for dishes, and even have some of thes same patterns therefore  I know she must be a very fine person.

The Bonafide Preppy Bride: I credit this bridal blogger for helping me find my own wedding monogram. A google search for “monogrammed drink stirs” landed me on her sight, which took me to Etsy and months later, I’m still following her. This blogger is an amazing DIYer and even though she’s all married now she’s still dishing out great wedding tips.

Kenny Chesney

June 24, 2009 - Leave a Response


It is no secret that I am a shameless Kenny Chesney fan. So, when he played just miles from my house  over Memorial Day weekend there was no doubt that a Kenny-inspired Country Meets Carribean party had to happen. Inspired by song lyrics, the back patio became pre-concert headquarters and loyal fans  joined us for food and drinks that only true followers would appreciate.

The menu inlcuded, among other things:  A Basket Full of Chicken, Greasy Cheeseburgers , Tennessee Big Star Caviar, Mac Macanally and Cheese,   My Key Lime Pie Cupcakes and Cookies.

The Good Stuff  Bar offered Beers In Mexcio, Tequila Loves Me Margaritas, Too Much Malibu and Diet,  and I Know Who Made the Moonshine Cherries, too.

What a fun time, and the show was one of the best I’ve seen….and I’ve seen a lot!


...and a big cold jug of sweet tea!

...and a big cold jug of sweet tea!



I loved these flowers in a Foxy's Firewater Rum bottle - think Somewhere In the Sun
I loved these flowers in a Foxy’s Firewater Rum bottle – think Somewhere In the Sun

And it goes without saying that…


Another Baby Shower!

June 22, 2009 - Leave a Response

April showers bring….June showers? It sure seems like I have been going to, planning and anticpating a lot of showers these days, and that is fine with me  – it just means there is a lot to celebrate!

This weekend after my own bridal shower,  Dan and I joined our friends Nicole and Matt  for their baby shower.  Nicole and Matt will become parents, oh….about any time now to Baby Cambelle Jade. When the shower invite came annoucing the party would be at Ram’s Head Tavern I thought, “A baby shower in a bar?” but after attending, Dan and I have decided we want our baby shower to be at Ram’s Head…I mean, if it’s even still open YEARS from now!  Nicole and Matt’s neighbors reserved a private room that was so pretty – the food was yummy and all the cute details their hosts added made it feel really special.  It was a perfect co-ed celebration for one special Baby Girl!

Cambelle already has a fabulous wardrobe –


A Boppy Pillow from Dan and me, which he selected all on his own –


Here’s Dan playing the Cambelle Guessing Game….Whomever predicts most closely her arrival date (I say 6.28), weight, lenth and the amount of time her mommy spends pushing wins a prize….appropriately, the dvd Knocked Up


Here I am with the cute Mom-to-Be –


Here’s Nicole with one of her Martha-esque hosts, Karli –


As if this pretty cake wasn’t enough –


Guest left with these take-out boxes, adorned with a clever little note and filled with a chocolate chocolate-chip muffin (the mommy’s fave) topped with a either a “C” (for Cambelle, of course!) a rattle or a cute little baby foot in pink icing  –








































One SWEET Baby Shower

June 22, 2009 - Leave a Response


Before Carrie showered me with bridal gifts I got the honor of showering her as she counts down the days ’til mommyhood!!! I co-hosted a  SWEET themed baby shower for my super cute prego friend, who has had quite the sugar craving as she awaits  the arrival of Miss Carragan.  It won’t be long, and this Baby Joy will arrive well equipt to stroll, sleep, eat, bathe and, of course, dress in the same sassy fashion as her mama!

Carragan's favorite colors are pink and green - like her mom and Aunt Mary!

Carragan's favorite colors are pink and green - like her mom and Aunt Mary!

Carrie with all of Carragan's excited aunts!

Carrie with all of Carragan's excited aunts!


In case you can't's a rattle!

In case you can't's a rattle!

Who wants fruit when there are so many SWEETS?

Who wants fruit when there are so many SWEETS?



Favor Bags

Favor Bags

If I can lose enough weight, maybe Carragan will let me borrow this cute sweater!!!

If I can lose enough weight, maybe Carragan will let me borrow this cute sweater!!!

For the record…

June 21, 2009 - Leave a Response

Chloe has been eating Puppy Pops LONG before the First Dog ever thought about it…. I’ve never intended to get political on this blog, I just hope the Presidential visit to my beloved Dairy Godmother doesn’t result in longer lines!