Keep Calm and Fly me to the Moon!

October 6th, 2014

jan-and-joyce-new-mjqs.jpgliza-and-suzanne-2014.jpgWe won third prize in the “Picnic in the Park” with the Savannah Philharmonic.  Parker’s stores sponsored this wonderful event.  Thousands attended this annual event in Forsyth Park– and we, the Mint Julep Queens coronated three new members.  We gave away 150 toy tiaras to little princesses and encouraged the dears to never grow so old that they forget the raw joy of playing dress-up.


All are Welcome at our Ten Year Anniversary!

September 30th, 2014

To celebrate ten whole years of Reign in Savannah, Georgia, we, the Mint Julep Queens are planning a huge, elegant, regal party.  Yes.  I know.  I am giddy with excitement.  The Savannah Philharmonic will play for us! Thousands and thousands of well-wishers from far and near will pack their suppers and seating, and then they will gather on the grounds of Forsyth Park.  Glasses will be raised and love and peace will abound throughout the Realm.

Three Ladies in Waiting will be crowned and sashed as official Mint Julep Queens.  Several of our brilliant Junior Mint Princesses will be there to give away over two hundred little tiaras to charming guests. Please join us at 4:30 pm in Forsyth Park for ”Keep Calm & Fly Me to the Moon”,  an MJQ 10th Anniversary Coronation & Flounce.

(In case you have not heard, the gathering on Sunday, October 5th is free and open to the public.  You will likely see it written up in local papers as “Picnic in the Park” with the Savannah Philharmonic sponsored by Parkers.  We Royals prefer to think this beloved tradition is a gift from the city of Savannah to us, but honestly, dears, maybe it is a gift to us all.)

(Queen Kim welcomes visitors from abroad who arrive to celebrate our decade long reign.)  


Permission for Fun

May 19th, 2014


New Blood.

No, dear. How about new Blood lines?  

That sounds much less Zombie Queen or Vampire Princess.  Let’s go with that.  New Bloodlines have been formally welcomed as the newest members of the Mint Julep Queens.

Queen Janet, Suzanne, and Cara (after ages of being notably charming) and after spending a bit of time with our group, decided they like us.  They enjoy our company and we enjoy theirs.  After attending several parties with their sponsor, we invited the three Ladies in Waiting to become crown-wearing, scepter-toting monarchs who absolutely refuse to give up the exciting aspect of girlhood— the ultimate dress-up.  Let’s play Queen!  (Playing Princess is really good training for playing Queen, is it not?) Each is Brave, Wise, Charming, Witty, and on Thursday evening, they got Sashed.

A few months ago, I was feeling pretty sorry for myself, and sorry for the group.  I could plan an event and maybe 12 ladies would show up.  With +thirty members, one third is not a participation rate I am satisfied with— so in typically “I darn refuse to give up” fashion I asked co-queens Kim and Sylvia, “What in the world are we to do?”

You wrang your hands and sniveled and wailed, too.  The melodrama is unnessacry.

The voiceinmyhead exaggerates.   And in fact, it was necessary to explain the dire straights the organization was facing.  Either we give up and just remain a small band of a dozen ladies like Robin Hood’s Merry Men (and I do not want to be Little John or Friar Tuck, nor wear tights) or we disband like a bunch of losers.   The choice of growth and expansion  was the most unlikely option, however it was the only option I wanted.  Kim and Sylvia headed the squad of cheering and planning.  Their Ladies in Waiting were first in line for our Tenth Anniversary Coronation and Flounce.  With over twenty females braving the storm, we rocked the Jepson Center.

With help from new generations of exceptional fun-loving ladies with girlish hearts, we decided to blossom. We rise from the ashes like glittery power phoenixes.  I believe our mission is unstoppable.

And what, pray tell is your “mission”?

Don’t play dumb with me, voiceinmyhead.  You know exactly what the mission is.  Give yourself permission to have fun and stop for one instant worrying about being judged.  Give yourself permission to Prance and Dance with abandon and joy.  Give yourself permission to seek out the camera and say, “Hey, you!  Take MY picture! I am here.” Give yourself permission to laugh really loudly and giggle non-stop for longer that most well-mannered belles ever thought they could.  Give yourself permission to be grateful that you have eccentricities that turn out to be your gifts and you need to magnify them, not hide them. Give yourself permission to no longer be the judge and jury of others and most of all, of yourself.

Fun is fun and if it ain’t fun, honey, don’t do it.   Being Royal does not hurt a single soul, my dear little crowder pea.  What hurts is wanting desperately to wear a tiara and never, ever gathering the gumption to do it. 



May 7th, 2014

If the over 200 Nigerian school girls had been Royalty off at boarding school, would they have been abducted?  If they had been abducted the investigation and recovery be swift and thorough, I believe .   The world needs these girls to return safety to their families.  We are all Valued and Loved.  We are all Royal Spirits.     # BringBackOurPrincesses  bringbackourgirls.jpg

What to Wear?

May 1st, 2014

leeann-calendar-project.jpgWhat to wear?  What to wear? oct-2013.jpgWhat to wear?  What to wear?  Last night I had one of those moments.  Attending a lecture at SCAD given by  Andrew Prince, the designer for Downton Abby’s tiaras, jewels, and crowns, I was fretting about what attire was proper.  I almost put on my tiara but at the last minute decided that would be rude and might draw focus from the stage, what with all the glitter and sparkle that would be perched on top of my pumpkin head. I finally settled on linen pants and a silk top.  Simple.

The Mint Julep Queens do not have tons of rules about what to wear to any of our functions.  Generally you should wear what every you feel comfortable wearing.  Through the tens years of Reigning in Savannah, we have picked up some minor pointers.  Here they are:

1.  Full Regalia means the MJQs will wear gowns and crowns and sashes.

2. Ladies in Waiting can wear gowns and glitter also, but tiara and crowns are discouraged.  YOU are Royal in your private life but when you are with the MJQs, it is  confusing to try and figure out who is a member and who is a visitor.  We are all Queens in our heart, but just for ease, No tiaras or Crowns for Ladies in Waiting.  Dears, We only recently figured this out, so when you look back over photographs, you needn’t wonder,  ”Is that Queen Katina Bomb-ba-cakesky?”  Why no, dear.  That is LABY Bomb.  She attended one party and was not an Official MJQ yet.   “Then why is that darling crown on her head?”  Oh.  I have no idea.  See?  It just stream lines the process of remembering names and membership status.

3.  Match your level of attire to the event, if you can.  AND remember we LOVE the camera and so for photographs try for one hue—green in any shade that you like is suggested, but not required.

4. Wear comfortable shoes.  This is a strong female’s life rule and proclamation, not just a Queen’s.  How can you go and do anything in shoes that are just pretty, but kill your darn feet?  The MJQs are not trees.  We move about. We are not rooted in one place. We flounce down streets and waltz into rooms.  We climb stairs.  Comfort and cuteness for shoe selection is highly recommended.

The May 15th Coronation and Flounce will be raw fun on a cracker if you feel good in whatever you decide to wear.  We will likely flounce from the Jepson to Vinnie’s and then have a little chocolate at LuLu’s, however our plans are fluid and influenced by weather and crowds, so be ready to celebrate just being a female in charge of your realm.

Also,  BRING a small tiara for a girl or for a fellow queenly type who may stop you and ask, “What is going on?”  ”What are y’all doing?” to which you reply, “Oh– we like to celebrate being women and we still like playing dress-up, so since I have always felt royal in my heart, every now and then we all get together in a group and go out to met the public and remind folks like you and your darling daughter to never stop being Royal.  It is good to be Queen.”

Royal Fun is Key

April 24th, 2014


On May 15, 204 we will celebrate a decade long reign in Savannah, Georgia.  A decade sounds longer than ten years to me.  Doesn’t it to you?  In a way, the sound of time measurements and words are really worse that the actually time. For example, I am over fifty. That is more than half a century.  You have got to be kidding me.  Stop it with that language.  Half a darn century?  Nawww. That’s can’t be right.  My skin is crawling.  And my hip hurting is so it must be right.

Highnesses, let us agree that we have been reigning as a group of fun-loving women for either one–ten years or a decade, ok?

All Queens and their sponsored Ladies in Waiting  are invited to our Fun is Key- Coronation & Flounce at “Art on Tap” at the Jepson Center on May 15th.

We will have a nibble and a drink.

MJQs, this a full regalia event.  Glitter and sparkle and sash and crown.  Those of you who are not MJQs, I can’t tell you what to wear, so please do not ask unless you want my opinion.  If you do want my Royal advice– I will be more than glad to give it, however it is only worth what you are paying me, so it is not worth a thing.

Back to the MJQs– Three Ladies in Waiting have attended several parties (three or more) and their sponsors have recommended them highly.   Janet, Cara, and Suzanne will be Sashed and One Queen (Erica R.) will be more formally introduced.

On May 15th, we will grab a pedicab or flounce off to dinner.  The location of that dinner has yet to be determined, however I would like Vinnie Van Go-Go’s, but there are many options.

(By the way, all MJQs, consorts, and Ladies, please save the date for August 2.  The MJQs will support Queen Erica R in raising funds for The 200 Hundred Club. Check links under “Blogroll” and “Queens in the Press” to the side of this post for more information.  Find the MJQs on Facebook and Instagram. )

Make it up as you Flounce along

February 21st, 2014


Celebrating 10 years of Royal Reign with the Mint Julep Queens in Savannah makes me wonder–  ”Where did I go wrong?”  The voiceinmyhead is typically pretty negative and blames me for perceived failures or stumbles.  Shud’dup, voiceinmyhead!  Instead I am gonna ask, “Where did I go right?” Hindsight is 20/20 vision they say, I however have 20/40 at hindsight, so the bifocals are still employed when looking over my shoulder. Glancing at the long blog posts that documented the hand wringing , knickers knotted, hands-up,  roll-coaster fun and frustration of leading a group of independent Regal Women has taught me one thing.  To tell you truth, it has taught me tons more than lame little thing.  Bucket loads of good stuff and great times have filled the last decade. That’s why I am writing a book, but the big thing today is this–Making it up as you go along is OK.

The road of life is there– be it  paved, unpaved, flooded, blocked, pitted, rolling smooth.  I am not in charge of building the path and neither are you.  Each queen has a path.  It is seldom red carpet lined.  Our rules, values, and moires  are there as guide posts.  Markers.  Sometimes they mislead but more often they give big hints.  Trust your gut.  Make up it up as you go along, but check the signs, too.

Next week I am heading to New Orleans to ride with over 200 women in the Krewe of Iris Parade.  On Tybee Island, Saturday March 1st, enthusiastic leaders Queen Kim and Queen Sylvia, 3 Junior Mint Princesses, and 3 Ladies in Waiting  will bravely and joyously flounce from one end of Butler Avenue to the other during the Annual Mardi Gras Parade.  Our Duke of Transport, Sir Richard will drive his 1962 Cadillac once again leading the small procession of Regal females.  I wish I could be both places at once.  Next year I hope to quadruple our queenly representation on Tybee, but if too many pot-holes mar the path it will likely remain a small number. Maybe we are meant to remain an extra small select group so that we can really connect with our well-wishers and not intimidate sweet young princesses we  may meet along the road.  Maybe having a handful of Royals is better than a truckload of…well… whatever.  (BTW- the float I will be on has 21 women.  And there are +20 floats).  Iris has been in existence since 1917.  The MJQs is only ten years old.  New Orleans is New Orleans.  Savannah is Savannah.

I trust that no matter the future of the group, the fun is on the journey.  The TRUE-TRUE is found in the Flounce itself .  So Flounce and Reign on, Mint Julep Queens and Princesses.  It is ok to make up your own set of rules with a tad bit of help from road maps and signs along the way.

‘Tis the Season

November 13th, 2013


‘Tis the season for me to start thinking about giving– Giving gifts and donating to causes should be a year around focus and it partially is.  I write checks and give time in difference do-gooder committees, but I don’t do much, honestly.   Our new Queen Sylvia regularly and faithfully gives time to the Emmaus House.  One morning each week she and her consort Jake get up at O’ Dark-thirty to head downtown to work in a kitchen that provides a sit-down breakfast for hundreds of the city’s homeless.

A few years ago the MJQs batted about the idea of adopting a cause to help our community.  At the time, it was a reaction to wanting a justifaciton for the group’s existence and if you have read anything at all on this site, you know we do not explain or justify our flounces. However we still were faced with pressure. What kind of females would be part of a social group that has no fundraising arm?

Look at us.  We are the kind.

In a knee jerk reaction, we discussed the concept and after seeing that there was no way on God’s green earth we would ever come to an argreeemnt on what non-profit to support, we bagged the idea.  Not to mention we volunteer too much and over commit ourselves, left and right.  Adding a charitable component to the group seemed ill-advised. Just for starters– Sue supports the Ronald Macdoanld house, Patty the Philharmonic and Friends of Music, Lois gives to Friends of Music and the Bamboo Gardens and Junior Acheivement. The list goes on and on!   Bottom line is this.  Good Queens have pet projects.

I am re-thinking whether the group should adopt a cause…one that we all can rally around.

Are you crazy?  Select your own. These ladies have their own ideas and imposing on them  will not work.

It might work. We all have challenges in our lives.  Hardships of every variety we battle.  Ups and downs.  Hills and valleys.  But we all have a roof over our heads.  We all have food, clean water, and good educations.  We all have a safe homes and family.  Maybe we can look outside ourselves and consider a cause for the coming season or the coming year.  What say ye, oh fellow Mint julep Queens?  We can look to members like Sylvia for inspiration.  A child centered charity or woman center charity?  Maybe one you personally have never really done anything for?

The season makes me hopeful.  Maybe it is not crazy.  I feel like I can make a difference.  We can make a difference.  We, as Royals might have an impact.  And if we do nothing as a group, that is ok, too.  I can still do the private individual stuff I was planning…however a group donation of some sort  would be cool.   

Wow.  It could be nice.  Santa’s elves dress in green and so do we, right?  The voiceinmyhead is becoming more accepting and magnanimous,  finally.  

Know thyself- Know thy style

October 14th, 2013


Ten years ago when the Mint Julep Queens were created by five fun loving women, we thought each lady would have such a strong sense of self,  that each queen would create their own unquie version of sovereign.  If you have never contemplated ruling a realm, you clearly are not a Royal yourself and must be studying the phenomenon.  Let me explain the facts and images a monarch may channel when she is invited to attend a Flounce with us.

American Queen  Jackie Kennedy is the epitome of American Queen in Camelot, complete with clean and crisp lines cut from the pages of the early 1960’s.  This Queen is Elegant, Understated,  but Powerful in her confidence and ease. She may be soft spoken, but she is brilliant, charismatic, and iconic.  Something about those long white gloves makes the crowd wave at her.  She waves back and nobs with a demure smile. This queen is diplomatic.  International.  Globally astute.

Prom Queen.  The lady would have been the perfect homecoming chick–  if only she had been popular .  She was not selected by her classmates because she was not a follower and sashayed to the beat of her own our beach music.  (Honestly, she was not very pretty either.  She may have suffered from UDS–  Ugly Duckling Syndrome.)  But she always wanted a big dress the size of a homecoming float.  Toile and ruffles, chiffon and sequins decorate bright green. Her laughter is infectious.  She is Very Smart and tries every day to be Kind.  Just because she was not voted the most popular cheerleader– (she was not ever a cheerleader, by the way)…just because she was a total nerd in school, does not mean she disdains rhinestone crowns.  On the contrary.

Pageant Queen.  We have some members  who really were so pretty in their youth that they were crowned Queens in beauty contests. They have maintained a beauty that is amazing.  These ladies are humble and know genetics gave them the physical beauty they possess, but their character is their real gift.  Good humored, cheerful and out- going, Pageant Queens are informed, sentimental, and polite.  (The Pageant Queens the MJQs hang out with are these things.) They still own their crown and love the chance to wear it again. Pageant Queens are informed from the era that they reigned.

Fashion Queen.  A 1950’s silhouette. A Chanel look.  Dior.  A Marc Jacobs gown. An Oscar dress.  This queen loves  the spotlight, (who of us doesn’t?)  But is happier to share the attention with fellow Royals.  Metropolitan and Urban, she is intelligent and witty.  Attention to details describe her.  Every photo of her is perfect.

Character Queen   Inspired by history or literature, this Queen has a deep sense of Myth.  Represented archtypes and all, she is acutely aware of her impact on the commoners.  Energetic and strong she is enchanting.    Elizabeth I.  Victoria.  Gwinevere.  Catherine the Great, Cleopatra.  Mid-Summer Night’s Dreame Fairy Queen. Cinderella. Sleeping Beauty.  Scarlett O’Hara.  Need I say more?

Thrift Shoppe Queen   The lady’s look will change based on her mood and her pocket book.  Her thrift shop finds will inspire attire.  She would rather invest her treasure in family and causes than the fleeting fabrics of a grown.  Hyper-creative, she laughs easily and with deep gusto.  She attracts attention and admiration wherever she flounces.  She owns more than one MJQ gown.

Campy Queen   She is glittery and bright. Flashing lights may suddenly appear around her.  She will stick battery powered lights to her dress or shoes. Comfort is more important than anything., so she will wear cowboy boots under her crinoline.  Good natured and cheerful, she is the life of the party.   She knows no fear.

The list above is just the short list.  Some  of the MJQs change their style from year to year.  Some MJQs have specific emergency needs that arise on the day of an event that impact dress choice.  ( Like your darn zipper broke; you are in mourning and totally must wear somber colors; or your dress shrank in the closet.)  It is your realm so you decide what works for you.  And it always a Queen’s prerogative to change style.  We do not all dress alike– except for general hue…green, greenish blue, blueish green, grey green, greenish grey and silver.  Got it?  Emergency attire of unlimited hue is of course encouraged.   Group photos look so much better when done in same the tonal range.  N’est pas? But really, as long as you are happy, it will be the perfect dress for you. If you are not satisfied with your Royal Style, change it.  Remember honeys,  you are not a tree, rooted to one spot.  You can move.  You can Flounce.  With the Queens, and in life, it is wise to adopt a look that helps you enjoy your journey.  As you sashay your chosen  path, folks around you may break into applause.  If they do not, they may not recognize you.   Never the less, it is still good to be Queen.

Three things I miss- Larry, Moe, and Curly

October 9th, 2013


I miss the youthful, ignorant Inner Stooges who helped me be rather risky, crazy, and fun-loving.    They gave me a mythical belief that I am invincible.  I can do it all and have a riotous time in the process.

I miss Moe.  Moe would say, “Nothing bad ever happens to me.  I know I should not be having this second shot of tequila, but it will all be ok in the morning because I am so massively smart.  I will just skip American Lit.  So what if I make a B?  I know I should be taking advanced biology, but the easy ‘A’ in psychology will help my GPA. And a ‘B’ average is plenty good enough in liberal arts.  Especially if you do not have to really work for it. ”

Larry was always yammering “Go ahead.  Stay up all night writing that paper.  Or now that I think about it, don’t!  It won’t matter that much later, but instead go ahead and decorate for Christmas.  Climb up on the roof edge and string the Christmas lights now.  Plug ‘em in first.  Or start a new project. Pull out all your art supplies right this second, wash your brushes, then put the brushes in a nice tin can and start the painting.  Leave the decorations in the corner until you need them. And tomorrow, go adopt a rescue kitty.”

Curly would tell me, “Ritz crackers dipped in blue cheese dressing counts as the main course for supper.  Four Little Debbies is fine if you drink milk with it.  Chase that with some black olives and celery with pimento cheese as a palate cleanser.”  Curly really did not know the concept of palate cleanser.  That is totally a manufactured memory. The voiceinmyhead likes pointing out Curly was none too bright.

I think the Three Stooges helped me seize fun and ignore responsibility years ago.  My Three Stooges are in hiding.  Or at least locked  in the closet for the last few months since they can be such an embarrassment.  

This weekend I am going out with the Mint Julep Queens even though I have tons of to do and am exhausted from being an adult all the darn time time.   I mean it.  All the darn time.  Working, parenting, wife-ing.  Is Wife-ing a word?  It should be.  Anyone who is or has been a wife knows what I mean. Although part of me is wishing I could put on warm jammies, watch Cary Grant movies, and not talk to anybody for a  couple of hours on Saturday night.  A larger part of me knows that if I put on a rhinestone tiara. I will have fun.   That Larger part is my inner Curly.  If I put on green chiffon and huge-ass petti-coat I will flounce about like a young girl again, right Larry?  If I wear my glitter eye liner and Dior Rouge lipstick I will take a good photo and look more like a Royal Character.  Ok with you, Moe?  If I just show up, ready to play, I will have an adventure.

Somebody will smile and laugh and feel joy that they too are a Queen in their heart of hearts.  Somebody will do a Queen’s wave and clap.  A little girl will approach  and have her mom take a picture with the Queens after she is given a tiara of her very own.  Which reminds me, I need to go shopping for that.  Maybe somebody recovering from chemo will be out on their birthday and the MJQs will serenade them with a special Happy Birthday song. It has happened.

I have so much pushing on me to do, I do not have time or energy to go out-n-about acting all outlandish.  Every lady I know is in the same boat.  But making a memory and being kid again is my priority for exactly five hours this weekend.  I will listen to the clamoring of the Stooges.  I will let them out of the closet.  If we all set aside a few hours every few months or so to just be a kids again, celebrate being alive, and be a tad bit silly– the world would be better place.  Or at least it would be more slap-stick and not so downright mean, which does not sound too bad right about now.

What about Shemp?  He got left out.  Don’t worry. Shemp is doing my shopping for childrens’  Royal Trinkets.