Wednesday, April 29, 2015

A Sneak Peek of What's New at the Garnier-Thiebaut Warehouse Sale April 30-May 2, 2015

It's back! The Garnier-Thiebaut Sale that I visited an embarrassing number of times in the fall is back! I have always loved all things French - the language, the food, the wine, the art, and, of course, the decadent chocolate. And when I was first introduced to Garnier-Thiebaut, maker of French luxury fabrics and linens, I realized my love for luxurious french linens. Garnier-Thiebaut is having a Warehouse Sale in South Boston, Virginia, this weekend, Thursday April 30 through Saturday May 2. Read about my previous warehouse sale shopping trips here and here. And well, here, too.  The sale will be held Thursday, April 30th 11am - 8pm; Friday, May 1st 9:30am - 9pm; Saturday, May 2nd 9am - 2pm. Location and directions are listed below.
The Garnier-Thiebaut warehouse sale in South Boston, VA starts Thursday morning, but the gracious owner and employees allowed me take a sneak peek Wednesday night and pick out my favorite things. It was like being in luxury french linen heaven. Garnier-Thiebaut provided me with an opportunity to shop til I dropped the night before the sale is open to the public, take pictures, and choose my favorite merchandise, and I promised Garnier-Thiebaut that I would share pictures, info, and my favorite finds here on my blog. Connect with them on facebook here or visit the sale website at
If you have gone to the sale before and know what to expect, know that there are a few changes this year, and hopefully it will make your shopping trip easier. First of all, the soaps. Good heavens, the soaps. And the lotions. And the linen sprays. These organic French hand and body lotions and soaps in various fragrances are quite the luxury, but are priced at only $3 to $10 each. I heart pretty packaging, too. It's the creme de la creme.
Another change is that the warehouse space will be configured differently. A cash register has been added, and the tables are set up in a different space from last year, so that the line can form without crowding the other shoppers. There will also be additional parking so that the traffic doesn't get too backed up.
Not to worry, though, not too much has changed. There are many items that you have come to love that are Garnier-Thiebaut staples and still available, like these bath rugs for $4.99.  

And the luxurious sheet sets, duvet covers, and pillow cases. Mounds and mounds of pillow cases. 
The line of sheets  pictured below is brand new available to retailers for the first time in 2015. The Chamonix Premium Sheet Set is an 800 Thread Count Egyptian Cotton available in neutral hues available at a very small fraction of their retail value. *Be warned about these sheets, they have deep pockets! I have friends that don't care for the super deep pockets because there is excess sheet fabric that has to be tucked under. If you're a little obsessive about such things, you might want to opt for a different sheet, but if you aren't bothered by a little extra fabric, these are the sheets for you. I don't mind an extra tuck here and there to have 800 Thread Count Egyptian Cotton sheets.*   
And the Turkish towels. Turkish cotton is treated in a way that allows for super absorbency, durability, smoothness, and softness. These Lucia Minelli Turkish Cotton Towels, available in a variety of colors and several stitch patterns, are a luxury. The label notes that these are more expensive towels than average, but are well worth the extra price for the quality and softness of the cotton. At the warehouse sale, however, the towels are heavily discounted, priced between about $12 for three piece sets (hand towel, wash cloth, towel), and about $42 for a 10-piece set.
1. The Garnier-Thiebaut Warehouse Sale is also known locally as "the old cotton mill sale."  It is also formerly known as the Hilden America sale. They do sell the red and white checkered tablecloths, plus cloth napkins, bed sheets, towels, stainless steel flatware, door mats, and more.
2. Directions: The Garnier-Thiebaut Warehouse Sale is located at 1041 Commerce Lane, South Boston, Virginia. If you are traveling from the town of South Boston, take 58 West, take the right at the stop light just beside Bojangles onto Commerce Lane. There are Garnier-Thiebaut buildings on both sides of the lane. The warehouse sale is in the building on the left. Go around to the rear of the building. 
3. The Garnier-Thiebaut Warehouse Sale will be held Thursday, April 30th 11am - 8pm; Friday, May 1st 9:30am - 9pm; Saturday, May 2nd 9am - 2pm.
4. Cash, Visa, and MasterCard are accepted. No AMEX.
5. Garnier-Thiebaut teamed up with The Halifax County Cancer Association this year. Someone from the cancer association will be on hand to sell raffle tickets and prizes will be awarded from the warehouse sale to raffle winners.
6. Like last year, Chef Steven Schopen, owner of Molasses Grill in the Town of Halifax, will be on site to present a cooking demonstration Saturday morning. The public is invited and encouraged to attend this cooking demonstration by the renowned and talented Chef Schopen.
Benefit Cookout 6pm to 8:30pm, Friday, May 1st 50% of Proceeds will go to Halifax Cancer Association
Cooking Demonstration Chef Steven Schopen of Molasses Grill 10:30am to 12:30pm, Saturday, May 2
Raffle 1:30pm, Saturday, May 2nd During the sale you will be asked to fill in your contact information, so we can email you an invitation for our next sale event and to enter for the raffle prize.
FREE Parking

FREE Shopping Bag with purchase
5% additional DISCOUNT on transactions over $100

10% additional DISCOUNT on transactions over $300

Cash, Visa, Mastercard accepted (No Amex, sorry)

Just for fun, where are my chicken-loving friends? Look at these chicken towels. 
I have seriously been to this sale so many times that I have made friends with the owner and the employees. They are a great bunch of people, and I'm really glad I have had the opportunity to get to know them all and work with them in helping get the word out about the warehouse sale.  
When asked where you heard about the sale, please tell them that you saw it on the Southern Virginia Mom Blog. I plan to post my finds tomorrow. I bought the most beautiful duvet cover and pillow shams. They are gorgeous, and I can't wait to show them off. Thanks so very much, and enjoy your shopping and your great warehouse sale finds!
xoxo, Erin
Southern Virginia Mom
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Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Ten Southern Virginia Events This Week April 30-May 7, 2015

There are quite a few special events here in the next week, from concerts to a warehouse sale, dinners, festivals, and more.  Southern Virginia Mom and Dad are looking forward to having a date night Thursday at the Wayne Henderson and Helen White show at the Prizery, and we're taking Southern Virginia Belle and Beau to see the Longwood Jazz Ensemble there on Monday night. I am also excited about the Garnier-Thiebaut Sale this weekend. What are your plans? Let me know what you decide. Now, in order of event date, here are ten things to do in the area over the next 7 days.    
1.  Wayne Henderson and Helen White in Concert this Thursday, April 30, 2015, at the Prizery. Wayne Henderson’s top-notch finger-picking is a source of great pleasure and pride to his friends, family and neighbors in Grayson County, VA. His guitar playing has also been enjoyed at Carnegie Hall, in 3 national tours of Masters of the Steel-String Guitar, and in 7 nations in Asia. For all of you guitar enthusiasts, I understand he is also the Wayne Henderson of Henderson Guitars, crafting about 200 guitars each year. Purchase your tickets to this performance at the Prizery by calling 434-572-8339, or by visiting the Prizery Box Office at 700 Bruce Street, South Boston, Virginia. Tickets can also be purchased in person at the South Boston-Halifax County Visitor Center at 800 Bill Tuck Highway, South Boston, Virginia. 
2.  The Garnier-Thiebaut Warehouse Sale is back in town this Thursday, April 30-May 2! I love this sale! I am planning on shopping til I drop at this sale event, and will share all my favorite items just like I did last year. Read about last year's sale here and here and here. (I went an embarrassing number of times last year, but I walked away with wonderful linens, beach towels, and more!)The Garnier-Thiebaut Warehouse Sale is located at 1041 Commerce Lane, South Boston, Virginia, 24592. The sale will be held Thursday, April 30, 11am -8pm; Friday, May 1 9:30am-9pm; and Saturday, May 2, 9am-2pm. This company is known for their beautiful luxury french linens, but I see something new on this graphic below: Soaps and body care. I can't wait to have these for my home!
3. The Halifax County Heritage and Antique Machinery Festival will be held this weekend at the Halifax County Fairgrounds. Friday, May 1, Noon-9pm; Saturday, May 2, 9am-9pm; and Sunday, May 3, 1pm-5pm. See flyer for more event information, visit, or call 434.572.6879. 
4. There will be a Master Gardener Plant Sale Saturday, May 2nd. Join the Master Gardeners in the parking lot outside the Halifax County Extension Office from 7:30 to Noon for a wide selection of plants, garden art and bake sale.  There will also be a raffle and free tool sharpening.
5. The HaliHealth Health Fair at the Town of Halifax Farmers' Market happens this Sunday, May 3, from noon until 5pm. Download the Town of Halifax Farmers' Market Calendar of Events Here. 
6. HyperFest at VIRginia International Raceway Dubbed the Automotive Amusement Park of racing, this event features road racing, drifting demos, a car show, ride-alongs, and a kid zone. You can even drive your own cars on track at race-like speeds. It will also feature Street Driven Car Show, Mustang and Japanese Classic Car Corrals, a monster Burnout Contest, Super Moto motorcycle racing, Karting Enduro, Helicopter Rides, spectator games, vendor midway and craft beer tastings. Additionally, camping and a kid zone make it fun for the whole family. It will be at VIR on May 2nd, tickets are $25 at the gate. 
7. The Downtown South Boston Farmers' Market is hosting a "Plant a Pot for Mom for Mother's Day" event on Saturday May 2. From 9am until Noon, the Hyco Ruritans will be on hand to assist, and pots, soil, and flowers will be provided. This event is free of charge, however, donations will be accepted to help pay for supplies. See the 2015 Calendar below for more upcoming events. The South Boston Farmers' Market is located at 300 Broad Street, and can be reached by calling 434-222-8012.
8.  There will be a FREE Concert at the Prizery, Monday, May 4, 2015. Longwood University Jazz Ensemble is offering a concert free and open to the public, first come, first served, including music from Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie, and Miles Davis, among others.

9. Molasses Grill in the Town of Halifax will host its first of three Decade Dinners in conjunction with their 10th Anniversary this year. This dinner will surely be the bees knees!! Molasses Grill presents the first in a series of "Decade Dinners" May 5 and May 6th. Make sure to shine your shoes, gentlemen, and ladies, we want to see your feathers, fringe, and pearls for this theme dinner, spanning the years 1915-1925. Advance Tickets Required.

Below is the menu for the Molasses Grill 1920's Decade Dinner next week.
10. Last, but certainly not least, the Mentor Role Model Program's Annual Fundraising Gala will be held Thursday, May 7, 2015, from 6:00 until 9:00pm at the Prizery in South Boston, located at 700 Bruce Street.  This evening will feature a catered dinner by South Boston's very own Four Oaks restaurant and will be a wonderful opportunity to listen to some easy jazz music while mingling with friends and bidding on many of the silent auction items. Add some laughter, a chilled glass of wine or a cold beer from the cash bar and this will be an evening to remember. All for a wonderful cause- to help support the mission of the Mentor Role Model Program.  Cost per ticket is $30, and sponsorships are available. Please contact Angela Yancey 434-575-3011 for more information, and read more about The Mentor Role Model Program here.
If I have inadvertently omitted an event that you would like to see on the list, please feel free to leave it in the comments for all to see. Whatever you chose, may you enjoy the week to come! 
xoxo, Erin
Southern Virginia Mom
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Saturday, April 18, 2015

Kingston Plantation Myrtle Beach, Spring Break 2015

The past couple of weeks have been full and fun! Following our Girls' Night In Corks and Canvas Party two weeks ago, we headed to Myrtle Beach for Spring Break. My parents have a home in Kingston Plantation, which is such a wonderful family-friendly and fun beach resort, and we are very fortunate to be able to stay there. Though their condos are not waterfront, the resort is, and since we have a golf cart there, we are able to park our car when we arrive and ride the golf cart anywhere and everywhere we need to go without ever having to leave the resort. It is wonderful! 
On the resort are several swimming pools, two hot tubs, the beachfront property, of course, a children's splash park with lazy river, and a by-the-pool bar and grill with waitstaff that will take your orders and deliver your food and drinks as you sit by the pool or on the sand. 
By the children's splash park is a hut with an activities staff, where the children can do various activities throughout the day. In the past they have painted seashells, learned to make balloon animals, had their faces painted, and had their hair braided, and team activities like scavenger hunts, pool games, and family survivor style beach competitions are also scheduled throughout the week. The community is gated with a full time security guard staff. There is a small complex as you enter through the gate, where we love to drive the golf cart to go to the pizza and salad parlor, ice cream shop, day spa, decorating studio, and more. There are three We Proudly Brew Starbucks spots around the resort, which is good, because I Proudly Drink Starbucks
There are also tennis courts with full time tennis pros who give weekly lessons, a health spa and gym, volleyball pit, and scenic ponds with ducks that the children have to feed at least once while there. We can't go home without feeding those ducks! Myrtle Beach certainly has quite a bit of hustle and bustle, but this little corner is quite serene. We are within a golf cart ride to Tanger outlets, and just minutes by car to Barefoot Landing, so if we want more shopping and dining options, they are very close by. 
Before we left for the beach, I received an email from someone in Danville who had seen my blog via twitter. He works for Showcase Magazine, a Danville-based media publication, and said that he would love for me to write for the magazine. They are looking to expand their South Boston market and highlight more events and businesses in Halifax County. Within a week of receiving the offer and agreeing to write for Showcase, I had a similar conversation with Southern Perspective Magazine, the Gazette-Virginia's quarterly publication. I have to say that I was excited  to be asked to write for the magazines and am just as excited for the opportunity to showcase some of my favorite people, places, and events here in South Boston and Halifax County. Because of the new opportunities and fast approaching deadlines, I bought a new laptop and took it to the beach with me so that I could write. I didn't want to take a large nor expensive computer to the beach, I wanted something inexpensive, yet durable, and I wanted something easy to use, preferably with Microsoft Office already installed. 

I found this one at WalMart. It was on sale for $199, and it had a year's subscription to Office, plus a month of McAfee Security installed. It easily fit in my lap on the drive to the beach and back (Mark drove), and I felt comfortable pulling it out while sitting on the back porch, sitting in the yard by the pond, and near the pool. I wrote both of my articles while at the beach, and submitted them, so hopefully we will see them in the next Showcase and Southern Perspective Magazines.

Also, while there, I got to work more on the Influenster Carefree Fresh Is Fierce Campaign. I even taped an unboxing, compliments of Miss Courtie, videographer extraordinaire. So glad to be working with Carefree and the #FreshisFierce Campaign! 
I was also able to finally wear this beautiful Buckhead Betties swimsuit cover (below) that I received from the Bargain Chicks at their September 2014 Richmond Warehouse Sale. Thank you so much for this, ladies! I love it!  

It was a very enjoyable week. The first full day we were there, Mark napped three times. In between naps, we played, drove the golf cart all over the place, ate, shopped, and saw friends. Miss Courtie gets better and better driving the gold cart each year. I love the arm fling, like a vote of confidence she gives herself toward the end of this video clip, like "Yes, I've got this!"

One of the best parts of the beach trip is getting to see our South Boston friends. Our next door neighbors bought a condo in North Myrtle Beach last year, and were there at the same time as our family. The men and children went to the beach, while Tracy and I antiqued, then we all met up at Mellow Mushroom and Menchie's frozen yogurt. We enjoyed a glass of wine on our back porch and the children played. 
I still can't believe how much work I got done at the beach. It's amazing how productive you can be when you step out of the normal routine and into a beautiful, stress-free environment. It wasn't all work. We obviously played quite a bit. In fact, I hated to leave, but we'll be back in May, so no worries here! 
I came home to a whirlwind of activity and can't wait to fill you in on the planning, parties, committees, productions, and some beautiful things greeting us when we came home. There's lots going on here in the upcoming few weeks and months - some very exciting things are happening here in Southern Virginia!  If you have events in your near future that you'd like to include here, just let me know and I'll try my best to help get the word out! In the meantime, keep your eyes peeled for the upcoming articles in Southern Perspective Magazine and Showcase Magazine, and as always, enjoy this gorgeous spring day!
Best, Erin
Southern Virginia Mom

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Pictures of Our Ladies' Wine and Art Night, Plus Tips for Hosting Your Own

Several years ago a friend mentioned that she wanted to attend a wine and art party in Raleigh. There was a bar there that offered a ladies night out where you could paint a portrait on canvas while sipping drinks from the bar. Not long after that, I saw an art studio that offered a similar ladies’ night out, and even more recently have seen Groupon deals offering similar classes.  I have wanted to do this for so long, but I was tired of waiting around, so I finally took matters into my own hands and decided to host a wine and art party myself. Why wait around for someone else to do what you can do yourself? Here is what I did to plan and host a ladies' wine and art night.
     Determine Interest. I had pitched the idea to some friends a couple of months ago, and made a mental note of who expressed interest, inviting them and taking their ideas into consideration when planning.
     Determine Location. We moved furniture to create a large open space in our basement, big enough for long folding tables and chairs. You might consider your basement, great room, a large dining room, patio, deck, well lit garage, or yard.
     Secure an Instructor. Wyatt Ramsey studied at Savannah College of Art and Design, and is now an art student at VCU.  He, his brother Curt, and his father Phil are all artists, and his mother Shelley is a blogger, speaker, and author, so this very talented family is well known in our community.  Consider a local artist, art student, or an art teacher in a local school to approach with your idea.
     Plan the Menu. Each participant at my party was asked to bring a bottle of wine or an appetizer to share with the group. I stocked up on wine, cheese, crackers, and fruit to add to the mix. You might provide the food yourself, have your event catered, have a covered dish, go with a theme, have a sign up list, or assign foods and beverages to participants.
    Create a Guest List. I talked to Wyatt about numbers prior to the event, and we decided that 6-10 would be ideal. Consult with your artist when creating your guest list to make sure s/he has enough supplies, and consider your space. You will need space for long tables, chairs, table easels, instruction space, as well as room for food and beverages.
    Name the Event and Get the Word Out. Come up with something clever like Art by the Glass, Belles with Brushes, Colorful Corks, or Wine and Design. I came up with the name “Corks and Canvas,” and promptly shared the private, invitation only event on facebook. In the invitation, I asked that everyone bring $20 to pay Wyatt for the class, and bring a bottle of wine or an appetizer to share with the group. I also described what we would paint as being “springy” or a floral of some type.  I emphasized the need for an accurate headcount.
Here’s how it all went down:
My guest list got a little out of control, and we ended up with 14 friends. We made do with what space we had, and it turned out perfectly. The more, the merrier! I was limited due to space and the nature of the event, so it felt at times like we were packed like sardines. My basement if fairly large, but with 14 women, one art instructor, 4 tables, chairs, easels, a buffet, and enough wine bottles to mistake us for Napa Valley, we easily filled the space.  It’s a great thing we all like each other so much! 
I had asked everyone to bring a bottle of wine or appetizer to share. I had food on reserve, and some people brought both wine and a dish.  We had a pretty sweet spread of buffalo chicken dip, tortilla chips, fruit pizza, cheeses, crackers, fruits, brownie bites, shrimp and cocktail sauce, and then some. I provided plates, napkins, cups, plus extra wine, cheese, crackers, and fruit. We laid the food out on the bar in the basement and put the wine on ice in a bucket.

I placed several bottles of wine around the paint tables, as well, so that the ladies could refill their cups without having to leave their paint stations. Our biggest problem was that after a glass or two of wine, we had a few paint brush in the wine glass mishaps. No big. We had plenty of wine to go round. We did also have trouble with our two elementary school teachers laughing a little too loudly and interrupting our instructor. We almost had to separate them, but after threatening them with time out, they behaved. A little behavior modification goes a long way.
This is the green vase with fresh flowered branches that we painted, and my lovely friend Blair. Wyatt walked us through what paint colors to mix, how to use the water with the paint, what to put on the canvas and in what order.
He talked to use about value, light, and shading. He talked us and walked us through drawing out the shape of the vase and measuring the branches with our eyes.
Beth and Grace showing off their beautiful paintings. I'm so glad that they were able to come to the class. Grace starts medical school at UVA this year, and her mom Beth is so proud of her! I know they enjoyed this mother-daughter time together while Grace is home visiting.   
Below is Sarah's beautiful painting. She is leaving Tuesday (her birthday) for London and hopes to visit an art museum while there. We were talking about how she will have a new appreciation for the art she sees after this painting class. Having just this brief lesson really opens your eyes to technique, perspective, and the wealth of talent that painters possess. 
Here we are the ladies with our instructor. Front row, l-r: Judith, Tracy, Wyatt, Jennifer, Back row, l-r: Lisa, Stephanie, Anna, Blair, Sarah, Jenny, Jennifer's mom Shirley who is visiting from Augusta, and me. Not pictured are Grace, Beth, and Rebecca.
I do have a few tips for you in case you decide to host a party of your own.
1.  Plan for more space than you think you will need.
2. Turn on the AC well before your guests arrive.
3. Make sure you have ample lighting. If you have your party outside on a deck or in the garage, plan according to daylight.
4. Have something to munch on at the table. In retrospect, I should have had bowls of nuts, goldfish, pretzels, or snack mix at each table.
5. Have bottles of wine at each table, so you can refill without having to disrupt the flow.
6. Have extra wine bottle openers, so 15 women aren't vying for the same bottle opener at the same time. Put one at each table so you don't happen to open every bottle. Put those ladies to work!
7. Remove any carpet from underneath the tables, and/or put down plastic underneath. I removed all carpets, but didn't put down any plastic or paper under the tables, so we had to scrub acrylic paint off the floors afterwards. That's not how you want to end your party.

Wyatt is pictured below with his painting. I am still giddy over the fact that he presented me with his painting at the end of the party. Now I have a Wyatt Ramsey original painting that I can hang in my basement. How awesome is that?! Believe me when I say that Wyatt had the patience of Job with our group last night. He was very professional and a pleasure to work with. If you are interested in hosting a similar party, please reach out to him. In addition to these parties, he paints gorgeous oil portraits, and I'm in line to have my children painted by him. His facebook page is here. Today is his birthday, so make sure you send well birthday wishes his way and tell him I recommended him. 
     I can't wait to hang my new painting in my house, so I'm off for a date with a hammer and a nail. Wishing you inspiration, creativity, and a new appreciation for the arts. Have a beautiful weekend, and make sure to take time to learn something new. You never know when you may learn to do something you love.
xoxo, Erin
Southern Virginia Mom
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