Hill Girl Mania… also known as SWAG

I think it had been so long since we were all together at once for an extended period of time that we were half drunk with excitement when we met a few weeks ago (alright it was early February, I’m lame; get over it). What – no kids? No husbands giving us the look of “let’s go” – no place to be? Jessie, Diana, Alissa and Andrea piled into someone’s minivan (yes, several of us are lame in this regard as well) and hauled it down to Virginia from New Holland while Missie came up from Richmond.
The best place I could think of to meet was Tyson’s Galleria – which I lovingly refer to as the “shi shi” mall – all the great high end stores (Saks, Neiman Marcus, BCBGMaxAzria) with a few massmarket chains (Bloomingdales, Ann Taylor) thrown in. The first funny moment of the weekend was after our tummies were full from Cheesecake Factory goodness. We were getting ready to get our shop on, when who walked by but Newt Gingrich. If you’ve worked on the Hill long enough, running into someone like this is not a big deal – in fact, I still have a picture of me with the Newt to prove it. However, for out of town visitors, this is the DC version of the star sighting, (just significantly less glamour than Rob’s sighting of Eva Longoria in a West Hollywood Starbucks a few years ago..but, I digress). Anyway, it was enough of a big deal that in the bathroom, they started dishing on the Newt, not knowing his (3rd) wife was a few stalls away… it was quite the scene to see Diana and Jessie scurrying out of the ladies room, tails between their legs once they realized the situation….
By the time we were done with Ann Taylor, MAC(yes even this MaryKay girl needs a sturdy eye color brush), Williams-Sonoma, and BCBG MaxAzria, with a Starbucks break in between, we were tired. I think most of our time was in BCBG where Andrea went back and forth and back and forth – in typical Ange fashion on whether or not to buy that tan knit vest with rabbit fur hoodie!..while she was making up her mind, I bought one in black…
After our mall-chick day, we came back to the House of Klause and feasted on fondue and Antipasta. Even Rob got into the game before he and the kids retreated to the elder House of Klause for the night. He mixed us some Caipirinhas and stirred up the fondue… such a good husband… Not just any fondue – I got this great idea from Robin to use the Gruyere mixture from Wegmans and go to town dipping everything from chicken sausage and potatoes, to a variety of breads and veggies. We chowed. And I paired it with the can’t go wrong (and gorgeous) antipasto that I’ve perfected – using romaine, tomatoes, olives, gardeniera, provolone cheese, cappocola, mortadella, salami, and prosciutto, with Italian dressing and fresh parmesan grated overtop. To die for!! You know you’ve scored with this crowd when the three cooks all ask for the recipe..
Then, before dessert, it was time to sit around in our mommy jammies and dish – on everything from Garden Spot classmates to emerging wrinkles and saggy (or nonexistent) boobs and sex with socks on (I won’t tell who). The husbands pretty much escaped unscathed — even after we’d had two bottles of Rosa Regale. But seriously, on the husband point – if there was a lesson in the conversation, it was that we are all incredibly blessed with a few good men. Oh, that the Lord favors our sons someday with wives like us! 
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We ended the night with birthday weekend cake for Diana – a special Wegmans Ultimate Chocolate Cake and fruit tart….over discussion of JLo (my current favorite fashion icon; tied with Gwyneth), SWAG (no one knew was this is?!!) Do you? ….and a look at Diana’s new jewelry line, Pretty Unique….
After a 2 am bedtime, we were up and at it early and off to Clydes down the street for Sunday brunch – complete with virgin Bloody Mary’s which Andrea prefers to exhale through the nose….Here’s the gang…..
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Then, they were off…. Home to relieve the men just in time for Superbowl Kickoff…..