28 April 2012

A Perfect North Shore Day

I am ecstatic to be back on Chicago's North Shore. Sometimes it is difficult splitting my time between our homes in Chicago & Dallas because the seasons can be a little "off" and I may be in the wrong place at the wrong time. One time I returned to our IL home only with spring clothes and a late hitting wicked winter storm took over the region!

This time, my little bambino & I encountered some rain, but it was short-lived. The raindrops gave way to a perfect afternoon.

Rikki Ragland
the preppy debutante

25 April 2012

FIVE years cancer free!

I am very excited because this is the five year anniversary of my cancer surgery. Although, I have been feeling great and have not had any recent issues, I still couldn't help but to hold my breath right before this important day.

Several years ago, I wrote about my experience, which I am reposting. It is always nice to hear your surgical oncologist wish you a very Happy Anniversary :)


As I approach my 37th birthday this Sunday, I am celebrating by coincidentally being featured in Girlfriends Health Guide . October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and my story is about having breast cancer at a young age. Girlfriends is a free quarterly health publication, published by Strive Media Institute. In 2007, I had a lumpectomy which, after a biopsy, was found to be the very beginning stage of breast cancer. I am VERY fortunate. I did not have to endure chemotherapy or radiation, but was urged to begin an oral treatment of tamoxifen. I am a huge advocate of self breast exams for the prevention of breast cancer, and especially encourage women in their 20s & 30s to do them because of our generation’s invincible attitude that breast cancer could “never happen to me-I’m too young.” I recently hosted a video about self-examinations for ABCAP.org . I also hosted a DVD for cancer survivors for my sorority, Phi Mu Fraternity, called “Scarves”. Now that I have been without cancer for a year (still not considered cancer free) , I will spend the next four years of my life doing MRIs, mammograms and appointments with two different oncologists every six months. Breast cancer stories about younger women, including actress, Christina Applegate, are becoming a bit more common. Hopefully, this will encourage women our age and younger to become more informed of this disease. Encourage all of the women in your life to do self-examinations monthly, in addition to having an exam done by a physician. Men are prone to breast cancer too and should also be checked. Please share your stories or dedicate a message to someone you know who has been touched by breast or other types of cancer.

Rikki Ragland
the preppy debutante

19 April 2012

Preppy on the Look-out!

Rikki Ragland
the preppy debutante

17 April 2012

Texas Bluebonnets!

It is a Texas tradition to have one's photo taken with bluebonnets. Families gather in bluebonnet fields across north Texas to take a snapshot of their little one among the beautiful field of blue flowers. Of course, I am no different & captured a few shots too.

Rikki Ragland
the preppy debutante

11 April 2012

Junior League Fashion Show at Gleneagles

If there is one thing the Junior League knows about (aside from a LOT of volunteering & community leadership) it is fashion!
Recently, we gathered again at Gleneagles to host a charity luncheon & fashion show, showcasing Plano retailers, including, White House Black Market, Impeccable Pig,Blinc, Francesca's and Margaret Palmer Jewelry.
A very special thanks to JL member, Janelle Twyford-Silvis of AlleeOops Photography for providing me with all of the photos in this blog entry. She truly captured the excitement of the day!

Book your smiles with AlleOops Photography: Voted 2011 Readers' Choice Photographer
Phone: 972-679-5742
E-Mail: jtwyford@alleeoops.com

Rikki Ragland

the preppy debutante

06 April 2012

A Preppy Passover

Chag Sameach! It is a greeting (meaning, "joyous festival") that we say to each other during Pesach or Passover. It is said at other times too, but the Temple halls were filled with the verbal exchanges during the Pesach seder for Cameron's school.

Each child had their own table setting

including handmade placemats

Our preppy little mensch gobbling up his matzah

Of course, Mommy has to make sure baby has a monogrammed kippah

There were tables and tables full of pre-schoolers and their families

Family photo

My little one and me with the Rabbi

"Borei Pri HaGafen," the prayer for wine-in this case, Kosher juice
Breaking of the matzah

Some of the Ten Plagues were included on the table tops

The afternoon ended with the hiding & finding of the Afikoman. Then it was happily devoured by the class!


Rikki Ragland
the preppy debutante

03 April 2012

Texas Twisters!

This is what North Texans witnessed this afternoon!
Photo courtesy of a WFAA-TV viewer

Out of nowhere, our warm weather rain storm spun off twisters. It was crazy. The green weather maps became an array of orange, yellow and red as meteorologists across the metroplex tracked storms and tornadoes.
As you can see by my pointing finger, we were one of the few left in the "green."

Very few places in the region were untouched by severe weather

As we monitored the Dallas stations, we heard that a twister had touched down right outside of our neighborhood & the three of us ran for shelter in our cedar closet.

Our personal bunker with pillows, flashlights & my laptop

Just as we turned up the volume on the TV in the bedroom to hear the weather report, the television went blank and we were left without any information.
Of course, we relied on social media: Facebook, twitter...

and texts with friends all over North Dallas.

If anyone told me that I was going to spend part of the afternoon barricading myself inside my cedar closet with husband and toddler in tow, I would have thought I had better luck playing the big lottery last week.

Unfortunately, not all of Dallas/Ft. Worth was as lucky. Arlington & Lancaster to the west and south of us were devastated and declared disaster areas.

Here is a screen shot from WFAA. This is a tractor-trailer flying through the air! Dorothy, you certainly are NOT in Kansas anymore.

Courtesy: Larry W. Smith / EPA

Courtesy: Larry W. Smith / EPA

It goes to show how a quiet afternoon in Dallas can quickly turn into chaos!

Rikki Ragland
the preppy debutante