Who am I?

I am an ENFP open book, a serial oversharer, a loud talker, and ready to spill my life story at the drop of a hat. Eating out is my biggest vice and punctuality one of my biggest virtues. I am addicted to TV and sugar. I am obsessive about taking pictures, maintaining our blog, and digital scrapbooking. I am über Southern; a Carolina native, I live for the beach. I'm living a girl's dream: running a youth cheer program. I love to sing & dance; I sing on our church's Praise Team Sunday mornings, and although I'm not teaching right now, I have taught dance (preballet, creative movement, tap, & jazz) outside Atlanta and Chicago. I'm a licensed Zumba instructor and teach at a prestigious gym now here in Houston. I would describe my personal style as: everything possible monogrammed, Lilly Pulitzer, sparkles & yellow gold, sundresses; but also comfy in classic jeans; not a big tons-of-shoes or purses girl. I am a super fan of the Washington Redskins and Joyce Meyer. Bubble tea and Starbucks venti 7-pump no-water chai lattes are my favorite beverages. I lived in Würzburg, Germany for a year, and I adore European travel! I graduated from Davidson College in NC with a BA in German & International Studies (minor classes: sociology & theatre) with the intent of pursuing international law...until I interned at a law firm and realized that God meant for me to be a stay-at-home mom! I believe being a mother is the greatest and hardest job on earth, and I am passionate about helping other young mothers feel connected, which is why I served in the leadership of MOPS for 4 years, while my kids were infants-preschoolers. I've been in Junior League since 2003. We had 8 moves in 12 years with JB's job, before digging our heels into our forever-home here in Texas. I am *not* OK with winter in any form, but I still enjoyed life as an ambassador of all things Southern for the 5 years we had to live up north, until we finally got to move back home to the South in early 2011!!!

Why am I blogging?
I have always been a journaler. I got my first diary in elementary school and haven't stopped since, (except for several blurry years in college. ;-)) Writing always helps me to work things out; venting in type helps me to realize things really aren't that bad. I am also a Nostalgia Queen, and being a mother of two, I want to remember *everything*. I kept a journal on a private site for over 7 years, but for whatever reason, I felt as if I was being weaned away into this new season. The #1 reason is that I still want a place where I can save all my thoughts & stories and share them with our friends & fam, 99% of whom live nowhere near us. I saved all of my old private journals, but there's no concise way to save all of your FB statuses, you know?

What does CastleBlake mean?
JB & I named our wedding website CastleBlake in 2001, alluding to us going to be the Blakes and this being our "castle" - our domain. We've used CastleBlake ever since to allude to our family. :-)

Who else makes up the CastleBlake clan?
*JB - husband, daddy, corporate revolutionary, football coach
*Will - born 2004, plays tough, super sensitive heart, math whiz
*Annelise - (a.k.a. "Sissy" & every derivation of "Princess Pumpkin Peach") born 2006, competition cheerleader
*Bonnie Blue - born 2002, beagle, sleeps all day & in our bed at night

Isle of Palms, SC - October 2009