I love this city. You could even say that I adore this city. Har-har. See what I did there?
Yesterday was one for the history books. As I mentioned, She Buys Cars and Traveling Mom put me and my new friend Nas in a fully loaded, brand new Chevy (a Tahoe, to be exact) and gave us each $300 to go out into the city and to buy a few items at local shops for a raffle where 100% of the proceeds would go to I Live Here, I Give Here and the Heath Alliance for Austin Musicians. I, of course, requested 2nd Street, my favorite place in all of Austin to shop, dine, and get pampered.
It was extremely important to me that I shopped at locally owned businesses that I frequented already. I arrived with a game plan, and I had some amazing friends in high places that offered their generosity.
I loaded up Lu and my 4moms origami stroller in the back of the Tahoe, and Nas and I were off! First off, can I just say that though I only had a few short hours with the Tahoe, that vehicle was the dreamy. So much room! So much automation! So smooth! Lucy slept like a champ the entire time.
After parking at City Hall, my first stop was Mercury Design Studio, where they graciously gave me 25% off to help with the benefit. Mercury Design Studio has been one of my favorite stores in Austin for a long time now. The owner Steve has impeccable taste and the shop is curated in a way that is equal parts elegant and whimsical, if you can imagine. I wanted something that would appeal to both men and women of any age, but I didn't want to spend over $100 as I needed to get at least three items for that night's raffle. I almost got coffee table books, but once I learned that the papier-mâché taxidermy was within my price range, I did it. Yes, people, the first gift I picked up was faux taxidermy. No regrets:
The fox head retails for $89. Woot! And I'm so going back for the tiny mice ($24 each).
My second stop was Eliza Page. I cannot tell y'all how much I love Eliza Page and owner Elizabeth. Elizabeth, who incidentally, was a TxSC sponsor in year one, generously offered a necklace and earring set for the raffle. When I dropped in to pick them up, I was floored that the earrings were the same style of Gorjana earrings I wear, literally, every single day. The necklace was beautiful, too... and now it's on my own wishlist.
Toy Joy. I mean, really. Is there a more Austin store than Toy Joy? I think not. Lizzie, who has become my annual SXSW buddy, was there, and it was so great to see her. I really wanted to get a red hand chair (mainly because I love Arrested Development and Buster but also because they're so iconic of Toy Joy) but they were way out of my budget. In fact, a hand chair would have been my entire budget. But then I spotted it-- something both of my older kids love and use every day, and there was a kid happily trying one out that very moment: A Rody (which is not the same as a roadie because y'know... because Chevy doesn't support drinking while driving and this isn't 1975).
Bam! Lizzie even offered to blow it up for me and festoon it with ribbons and a Toy Joy sticker so Rody would be ready for display. Done and done!
Final stop: milk + honey spa. This is my oasis, my favorite place to treat myself in all of Austin. The kind folks there offered to match any gift certificate I purchased for ILHIGH, and I had my heart set on getting a certificate for the Signature Retreat, which is a manicure, pedicure, facial, and massage; in other words, the ultimate day of pampering. I can't think of anything else I want more at this very moment (well, add a detox scrub and a steam), so I just had to get it for the benefit along with a bottle of their body scrub so a little milk + honey luxury can be had at home, too. I envisioned women fighting over it and for a riot to break out, not unlike that scene in Mean Girls. Fortunately everyone there was really nice. No riots. In fact, Chris-- a dude-- from HAAM won it:
The party last night was fun, too. I ate a burger from the Hat Creek burger truck, and I got to meet some amazing new people and scope out some way cool cars. Adorable story: on Fridays Jude divvies up his allowance in his moon jar, and since day one he says he says he is saving for a truck for when he becomes a teenager. But thanks to Chevy, that's history now. He got his photo taken in a Corvette Stingray Convertible last night, and now he wants to save up for a Corvette Convertible. I don't have the heart to tell him that there's no way he's going to be able to save over $400 a month every month for the next thirteen years to buy that car because his allowance is only $2 a week. *gulp* A kid can dream, I guess:
I had so much fun at the event and met so many wonderful people. My sweet City Group came out to support the cause (and me!), too. Oh, my heart feels full of love for Austin, and I was so happy to be asked to be a part of this great event. I wish y'all could have been here.
To catch more of the festivities, be sure to check out #ChevyShopSocial on Twitter. Big thanks to event sponsors Chevy, She Buys Cars, and Traveling Mom and an extra special thanks to Mercury Design Studio, Eliza Page, and milk + honey for supporting the cause by helping me make my funds stretch as far as possible.