Donni’s Dash of Sparkle

“Leave a little sparkle where ever you go.”
These posts are sprinkled with Donni’s dashes of sparkle on a variety of topics included but not limited to beauty, food, and yes – sports.

Music Midtown 2015 Recap

Music Midtown was this past weekend (Sept. 18 & 19). I prepped you with a Music Midtown Countdown and playlist last month and now I’m back with a recap and some video footage from my favorite sets. The weather was perfect and although I didn’t see everyone that was on my list – I saw my “must-sees” and they did not disappoint. Sadly, I only caught little a bit of Elton John as the crowd in front of his stage was ridiculous.

Music Midtown 2015 Recap - The Palmetto Peaches - palmsinatl.com

Hozier

With his man-bun and a guitar that had a gas can as the body – Hozier delivered an amazing live show. A few months ago, I had only heard “Take me To Church” (which he slayed live) until I heard a clip of “Work Song”. I immediately put his album on rotation and fell in love with his voice. He absolutely sounds just like his record when singing live and not a lot of artists can say that today. With his haunting voice, he preformed “Like Real People Do”, “To Be Alone” a cover of the Beatles’ “Blackbird” and Ariana Grande’s “Problem” as the sun began to set over Piedmont Park.

Drake

Although I’m still mad at Drizzy for ruining Serena’s historical moment I had to forgive him after putting on such an amazing show on Friday night. His energy in combination with the crowd’s energy made an incredible performance.  He moved from “Trophies”  to “Hold on, We’re Going Home”, to “Over”. The crowd almost overpowered him as we rapped along to “The Motto” and his verse from “Tuesday”. “Worst Behavior”, “0 to 100”, “All Me”, “Know Yourself”, and “Back to Back”  (the latter four are in my video) were other favorites of mine.  Near the end of his set – he announced his mixtape with Future would be released before the end of the weekend and boom it came out last night. To end the night with a bang (pun intended) he had fireworks at the end of the set. So you win Drake.

Billy Idol

I won’t lie to you. I don’t know all of Billy Idol’s catalog, but I was prepared for him to rip off his shirt (it did indeed come off) and give a good show. The British rocker is almost 60 and proof that age ain’t nothing but a number. He showed off those abs and killed it while the crowd howled “Rebel Yell” and “White Wedding” back to him.

Panic! at the Disco

Panic! at the Disco makes me think of high school and although Brendon Urie is the only original member left, Panic! delivered.  The set included “Ballad of Mona Lisa”,  “Hallelujah”  and “Miss Jackson”. Urie joked that the band had just written a song backstage they wanted to preform — cue an excellent cover of Bohemian Rhapsody (which you can find in the video below). Bravo Panic! Bravo.

Lenny Kravitz

Holy mesh shirt, ripped jeans and cowrie shell necklaces!! Lenny – rockin’ his sunglasses at night – was feeling the Atlanta crowd and the entire set was just this cool effortless groove. The youngin’s know him from The Hunger Games, but there were plenty of longtime fans chanting the lyrics with him and cheering on his guitar solos. The best part of the set might have been the solos from the band – his drummer (Cindy Blackman) absolutely killed it!! P.S. She’s married to Carlos Santana. The trumpet player took me to church and the saxophonist gave me chills. Some of the hits we heard were: ” Frankenstein”, “American Woman”, “It Ain’t Over ‘Til It’s Over”,“Dancin’ Til Dawn,” and “Always on the Run”.

Sam Smith

I left Lenny early to get a spot for Sam Smith. I’ve been excited about this performance for a long time and he slayed from the first note to the very last note. Like Hozier, Sam Smith sounded fantastic live – it was like listening to him on Spotify. The other thing I loved is he seemed so humble. He was in awe that we truly connected with his music and he was overjoyed that the crowd sang his lyrics back to him. You could tell that he was having a great time by the smile that almost never left his face.  He shared his story and the crowed roared in appreciation. As if I could love him anymore: he acknowledged that Amy Winehouse’s birthday had just passed and how much he appreciated her as an artist before launching into a cover of “Tears Dry on Their Own”.  Smith sang another cover “Can’t Help Falling in Love” that made the audience hang on to every note. Other hits sung: stripped down version of “Latch” (see it in the video), “Lay Me Down”, “Money on My Mind”, “Like I Can” and the smash “Stay With Me” (also in the video).

So that’s it people – my Music Midtown recap. I’m a little hoarse, but it was worth it. Have you seen any of these artists live? Were you at Music Midtown? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

If This Tailgate Could Talk

 

Tailgating 101 - The Palmetto Peaches

Thankfully the tailgates Ace and I have been to/ hosted can’t talk and we’ve been untagged from a majority of the pictures. College football season kicks off in two days (Go Gamecocks!) and NFL games are right behind (preseason doesn’t count). Now is the time to draft your fantasy teams, breakout all of your team paraphernalia and prepare yourself for tailgating. The Palmetto Peaches love a good tailgate and so we’re getting you prepped with some tailgating tips.

Tailgating is a lifestyle.

The high school Ace and I went to didn’t have sports, although we did have cheerleaders for a bit. (Please ask Ace about this.) So  one of the things I was once most excited about my freshman year of college was football season. Let’s be clear – my Gamecocks weren’t good at the time. We went 6–6 (3–5 SEC) and didn’t get selected for a bowl game. However, I loved the atmosphere. I remember cheering my team on to a victory on a rainy Thursday night as they defeated #8 Kentucky. I also met Big Mike from Making the Band’s Day 26 during this game. The atmosphere of football season is what I came to love and I look forward to this time of year. More specifically I really came to love tailgating.

Sunday NFL tailgates are in another category and I’m not sure what the rules are in other conferences, but I can tell you how it works in the the SEC. No matter if your team is ranked or unranked, playing a conference beast or a “cupcake game” – tailgating is a lifestyle. Expect to be there at least four hours before kickoff – no matter the weather conditions. For example, with a noon kick-off time, you are tailgating at 8 am with mimosas in hand in your favorite gameday dress.

Get in my belly

My friend Kevin makes this out of this world sausage dip that I’m sure he laces with crack (the only explanation of why everyone is addicted to it). When he walks up with that crock pot – it is ON! The food at your tailgate is very important. Will people be happy with a cooler full of beer?  Absolutely, but I bet they’ll be happier with a cooler full of beer and a table full of deliciousness. The secret is in prepping. While you’re making your college color jello shots go ahead and prep your food and remember crock pots are your friend. Gather your tailgate crew and have everyone bring a dish to round out the choices. As important as the the dips and burgers are, don’t forget to add a few sweets.

Tailgating 101- The Palmetto Peaches

Donut Worry Be Happy – Tailgating Sweets

Hey Neighbor

Please introduce yourself to your neighbors. Even if they are from the opposing team, it’s always nice to make friends with your tailgating neighbors. At the very least you’ll have competitors for flip cup, but you could end up sharing food, drinks, the cornhole set and maybe making season long friends.

Follow our Pinterest board for tailgating recipes, ideas and tips. We’ll be adding to this all season!

Follow The Palmetto Peaches’s board Tailgating Central on Pinterest.

Share your favorite tailgating recipes, stories and tips with us in the comments below.

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Reading Rainbow: Summer Reading List

Butterfly in the sky
I can go twice as high
Take a look
It’s in a book
A Reading Rainbow

Do you remember getting your summer reading list at the end of the school year? Maybe it’s a habit, but as an adult I still create a summer reading list for myself. Now it’s a little harder to find time with work and blogging taking priority, but I love taking out some time and flipping through a book whether on my Kindle or the pages of a physical book.

Bookshelf to Big Screen

I’m a big believer in reading a book before even considering seeing it in theaters. Perhaps, that’s why I’ve been slightly underwhelmed by a lot of the YA series turned movies (Hunger Games, The Divergent Series) The books are usually ALWAYS so great and while I love seeing them on the big screen – sometimes it doesn’t compare to what I felt when reading.  For example, if I told you I Kim Kardashian ugly cried reading The Fault in Our Stars it wouldn’t do the cry justice.

The Palmetto Peaches

Did I get a little sniffly watching the movie – absolutely, but nowhere near the same emotions were emitted as when I turned the pages. With that being said, I did complete quite a few bookshelf to big screen reads this summer.


Paper Towns by John Green

Ay yi yi. So I just gushed about The Fault in Our Stars, but I can’t do the same for Paper Towns. I was so disappointed in this novel.  I struggled to get through Quentin, the main character’s, constant obsession over a manipulative and selfish girl- Margo Roth Spiegelman.  And he continues to call her Margo Roth Spiegelman throughout the book. The parents in this book were unrealistic. The other characters in the book with the exception of Radar are just as unlikable.  The story had potential and I wanted to like it, but I was seriously underwhelmed.  I was excited to see the movie before reading the book, but will wait until it hits HBO or Redbox.


The Duff: (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) by Kody Keplinger

Designated ugly fat friend? What kind of misogynistic mess is that, you say? Don’t let the title turn you off.  I love YA fiction, but sometimes they are just too “young”.  This book, while set in high school, is something every girl can relate to. Every girl at time has felt like the designated ugly fat friend. The DUFF doesn’t just mean ugly or fat. It’s the feeling of insecurity we all feel at one point or another.  Am I pretty enough? Smart enough? Funny enough? This novel takes you through that narrative wrapped in humor and snarky comebacks. I loved this book and would highly recommend it. I’m a big fan of Mae Whitman from Parenthood, and she kills it in this movie.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

I know. I know. I’m late to the game. I’ve been avoiding Ben Affleck, his stubble, and all the chatter about how crazy Rosamund Pike’s character Amy Dunne was until I could sit down with this book. And boy did Gone Girl live up to it’s expectation. I’d also add that the movie did not leave me disappointed either. For those of you have neither read the book or watched the movie, I won’t spoil it. However, I will say the books draws you in from the first chapter.  By the time you get to Part Two of Gone Girl, the intensity level is kicked up a notch.  It’s dark and twisted and I loved it.


Serena by Ron Rash

Speaking of crazy ladies – let’s talk Serena Pemberton. Serena is the Amy Dunne of 1929. Now I’m pretty sure I’m supposed to hate her, but I loved the badassness of Serena. Does she do or attempt some unforgivable things? Absolutely, but she knows she’s a baddie and makes no apologies for it.  As far as the movie, J Law and Bradley Cooper’s chemistry is everything. While the movie has quite a few differences than the novel, it’s definitely worth watching.

Memoirs


Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl by Issa Rae

I love Issa Rae and her ABG webseries (and I’m anxiously awaiting her HBO show), so I was very excited about the book. Issa Rae is hilarious, but this book wasn’t. I purchased the audiobook and it made for decent background noise sitting in traffic. There were some very funny parts and I learned a lot about Issa Rae, but it was a little disappointing overall.

Currently Reading:


#GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso

Every blogger and her cousin has been gushing about this book, so I thought I would check it out. I haven’t gotten that far, but I am finding Sophia (the founder, CEO, and creative director of Nasty Gal) has such an interesting story. She opens the book with: “I have three pieces of advice I want you to remember: Don’t ever grow up. Don’t become a bore. Don’t let The Man get to you. OK? Cool.  Then let’s do this.” Uh yes!!

The Walking Dead, Compendium 1 by Robert Kirkman

Listen call me a nerd, but I absolutely love The Walking Dead TV show. Since becoming a fan, I’ve wanted to get my hands on the comics – which are brilliant. I’ve only put a small dent into the compendium, but am thoroughly enjoying it even without my boo Daryl Dixon.

To Read:


The Woman I Wanted To Be by Diane von Furstenberg

This is currently an audiobook on my Kindle that I can’t wait to get to. I’ve heard that Diane’s reflections in this book are so inspiring and I’m interested to listen to this one.

What books have you read this summer? Any favorites or books not worth picking up? I’d love to hear your suggestions.

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Dorm Room Essentials

If you’re coming with a U-Haul you have too much stuff!!

In the coming weeks, approximately 1.6 million first-year students will head off to four-year colleges and universities. While there are plenty of campuses with apartment style dorms and spacious living quarters for students, it’s likely that as a freshman you’ll be stuck in some of the smaller dorm rooms.

Around the nation, students entering their freshman year have an average 228 square feet of living space to share with a roommate. FYI, the average studio apartment is 300-450 square feet. As much as I crossed my fingers that my dorm room was going to mirror The Best Years, I, alas, was confined to a small outdated dorm room with hall bathrooms.

Before my freshman year, I grabbed one of those checklists from Bed Bath and Beyond and racked up on items. A great deal of them were returned after lugging them up nine floors (the elevators were broken for a few hours during move-in). Dorm room fail. I lofted my bed the first semester and eventually got tired of not being able to fall into bed for a nap between classes. Dorm room fail. My Dad came up before second semester started and dismantled my loft bed and set it up on risers. Dorm room success.  In the hopes that I can help others consolidate those bags/boxes on move-in day and avoid a few dorm room fails, I’ve created this Dorm Room Essentials checklist. Pin it. Share it with your friends or the college student in your life. Click the image for a printable version. 

Dorm Room Essentials - The Palmetto Peaches

 

Don’t forget to:

  • Meet the Roomie: Once you’ve gotten your roommate assignment reach out and say hi! You can also search your Class of 2019 Facebook group for their name. Together you’ll need to figure out the items you’ll share (mini fridge, microwave, TV, curtains, etc.) and who will buy what.
  • Also, for those of you flying in,  most schools will let you mail items during move-in. So purchase big items beforehand and have them shipped to campus. Or you could wait until you get into town and find your nearest Walmart, Target, and/or Bed Bath & Beyond. Don’t forget to use those 20% off single item coupons at BB&B. Hand one to Dad, Mom, little sister, big brother and purchase your items individually.
  • Send your friends letters. Yes, adding paper, envelopes, and stamps to your don’t forget list will put a smile on the faces of your friends at other universities and back at home. Who doesn’t love a little snail mail.
  • While not specific to dorm room essentials, I would caution you to stay away from the bookstore when renting or purchasing books. Check Chegg, Half.com, and Amazon.com for more reasonably priced books.

Good luck Class of 2019! And to my college grads leave a comment below or tweet me what college essentials you would suggest for first-year students.

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Planner Addict

Hi! My name is Donni and I am a planner addict/planner nerd. Yes, I love my Google calendar, but I absolutely love a good old-fashioned paper and pen planner. I’m currently using the 2015 Erin Condren Life Planner and the Day Designer for blog planning. I’ve had one or two people ask me about how I use my planner so I’ve filmed a plan with me video which you can find below.  But first, I have a few organization/planner tips for you:

  1. Set aside a specific time each week for planning.  Sunday is my planning day. In between meal prep, I sit down with my planner and planner accessories and figure out a plan of attack (no pun intended) for the week ahead.
  2. Don’t be afraid to experiment.  I love looking at Pinterest for planner inspiration and I follow a lot of fabulous planner ladies on Instagram. However, I learned quickly that not everyone’s planning system will necessarily work for you.  Don’t be afraid to try different planners, layouts, stickers, etc. until you find what work’s best for you. I was stuck on horizontal planners until I switched over to my Life Planner and now vertical layout planners are my favorite.  Planner peace is achievable.
  3. Build up your accessory collection! Beware of Etsy! There are soooo many cute shops with dozen of items you will feel you need for your planner. You will be tempted to buy everything, but I would suggest taking your time and building up your collection. If you’re a planner newbie, you may discover that stamps fit your aesthetic more. So now what are you going to do with the 300 stickers you have coming in from various shops?
  4. Your planner can be more than a planner. In addition to daily planning, I’ve seen many use their planners as gratitude journals and scrapbooks. I’ve started adding movie/event tickets to my planner to add more of that scrapbooking feel.
  5.  HAVE FUN! Do I want my planner to be as gorgeous and as decked out as some of the layouts I see? Sure. But this is supposed to be a fun aspect of an organizational tool. Don’t stress about decorating your planner. If it just makes sense to leave out the washi tape, stickers and stamps – leave it out! 

Plan With Me Video

Plan With Me - Monthly Spread - The Palmetto PeachessPlan With Me - Weekly Spread- The Palmetto Peaches

If you’re a fellow planner nerd – leave a comment below or let’s chat planners on twitter! I’d love to watch your plan with me videos or see photos of your weekly layouts. And for all of my organizationally challenged peeps, let me know if you’d consider a good old-fashioned paper and pen planner.

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Go Girl It’s Your Birthday – Birthday Playlist

Hi! My name is Donni and I’ll be turning 26 tomorrow. Is 26 considered “late twenties” or can I still claim mid-twenties until next year? My golden birthday was super exciting. I was turning a quarter of a century (I actually hate when people say that), my insurance rate was going down, and I was still on a Beyoncé high from having been to the On the Run Tour. This year the most monumental thing I could look forward to is being kicked off my parent’s health insurance plan. Thankfully, I have my own. Even my Dad called me earlier this week to remind me of how old I’ll be. 26…Don… Geez… I remember when you were 6 and used to trick me to going to Toys R Us.  Here’s the thing, I LOVE birthdays – my own and other people’s – and I don’t mind getting older. I hope to be raging at my 50th. So all these comments about me getting older and the questions about me getting married are getting ignored.

Go Girl It's Your Birthday - Birthday Playlist - The Palmetto Peaches - palmsinatl.com

It’s weird to think that a mere five years ago, I was celebrating 21 by having two parties, knocking back Coco Losos like water, dancing on bars in Five Points and throwing up in a booth at Qdoba. Sorry, Mom. Tomorrow, I’m just excited to hang out with my friends and go on an 1000 ft slip ‘n’ slide. I am embracing and celebrating how much I’ve grown.  So for all my 20-somethings, I say take each birthday to recommit to being young and enjoying life. So whether you’re a Leo like me or a Sagittarius or Capricorn waiting for the end of the year for your birthday, celebrate your unbirthday with me with this birthday playlist.

We’re Gonna Celebrate (Birthday Playlist)

  1. 50 Cent – In Da Club
  2. Nicki Minaj – The Night Is Still Young
  3. Pitbull & Ne-Yo – Time Of Our Lives
  4. Trey Songz – Say Ahh
  5. Party Rock Anthem – LMFAO
  6. P!nk – Get the Party Started
  7. BSB – Get Down
  8. Wiz Khalifa – Young, Wild and Free
  9. ShopBoyz – Party Like a Rockstar
  10. 2 Chainz – Birthday Song
  11. Avicii –  Levels
  12. Selena Gomez – Birthday
  13. P!NK – Raise Your Glass
  14. Rihanna – Birthday Cake
  15. Lady Gaga – Just Dance
  16. Ke$ha – We R Who We Are
  17. Fun. (Feat. Janelle Monáe) – We Are Young
  18. Whitney Houston – I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)
  19. Kings of Leon-Birthday
  20. Stevie Wonder – Happy Birthday
Because a birthday playlist isn’t complete without Stevie Wonder!

If you’ve already had your birthday this year tell me what you did. If you haven’t celebrated yet tell me what your plans are – big party? Travel? What is your birthday song?  Leave a comment below or tweet me @PalmsInATL!

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches