Escape the Ordinary

Written by Helen Mitternight.

Escape Mitternight

“Escape the Ordinary!” urges the ad for the exotic vacation getaway, and for the fancy hotel.

Certainly I knew I was never destined to be ordinary.

When I was in college, I used to assume that I would be extraordinary. My best friend and I sat over greasy dorm cafeteria food, confidently forecasting our great achievements. I would end corruption as an investigative reporter and then write the "great American novel." I don’t remember my friend’s dreams – like most college students, I was fairly self-absorbed and my own dreams were the only ones worth taking note of.

But what we both knew with a certainty was that we would never be ordinary. Like all those other college students around us.

No one wants to be ordinary. It’s why “all the children are above average” in Garrison Keillor’s mythical town of Lake Woebegone, formerly on National Public Radio.

But here’s the thing.

Every time I’ve tried to “escape the ordinary” into the amazing, it’s fallen a bit flat. Maybe it’s the pressure on each “escape the ordinary” experience to be so transformative. Oh, the wonders of the world are still wondrous. An island carpeted with slow-moving iguanas in the Galapagos was still wonderful. Renaissance art in sun-drenched Italy still inspiring and beautiful. The hordes of people filling the sidewalks of Shanghai still equal parts appalling and amazing. But, aside from some great vacation photos, they haven’t fundamentally changed who I am; which just may be ordinary.


The things that have changed me, really rocked me to the core? The birth of my daughter, and every milestone thereafter, including the discovery that I would enjoy this young woman even if she weren’t mine. Meeting my husband-to-be and feeling like I already knew him, or at least everything that counts. Marveling at how quickly a stray pup, neglected if not abused, trusts me enough to fall asleep on her back next to me, her legs akimbo.

I am not yet at the age when I’m grateful just to wake up every morning, but, after a long career of speed and stress, I am grateful now when that morning is slow and sleepy and sometimes sexy.

There have been a few times when the slow and the sleepy have been shaken by tragedy – ironically, the kinds that would make a terrific "great American novel." At those times, the ordinary seems a haven just out of reach.

So, for me, average is okay. For me, maybe the ads should say, “Escape TO the Ordinary.”

Five Memorial Day Weekend Must-Haves

Written by Gwynn's of Mt. Pleasant.

If there’s one thing Charlestonians love more than their shrimp and grits, it’s celebrating Memorial Day Weekend! From sunbathing on the beaches of Folly to sipping cocktails on sunset rooftops, the unofficial start to summer brings together both locals and tourists for a fun-filled weekend of outdoor outings and evening soirees. Whether you’re traveling out of town or enjoying a staycation at home, one thing’s for certain –  you’ll need to be prepared, both in style and comfort. And, since time is of the essence, shopping for all your weekend essentials is made easy at Gwynn’s of Mount Pleasant. Oh, and did we mention that we’re having a Buy 3 Get 1 Free Memorial Day Sale through Monday, May 30 at 5pm?!

Check out these 5 must-have items for making this weekend your best Memorial Day yet, exclusively at Gwynn’s of Mount Pleasant. And, don’t forget, we’re open Memorial Day Monday from 11am-5pm so you can shop these exclusive items in store!

1.      A great fitting swimsuit

Our style experts at Gwynn’s know that a flattering style and a comfortable fit are the two key components to feeling great in a swimsuit. Brands like Tory Burch and Vilebrequin offer unique and durable swimwear designs that will have you looking and feeling your best throughout the weekend and season. Plus, with a sale like this through Monday, you can buy 2 swimsuits for her and 2 styles for him!



2.      A pair of waterproof shoes

Whether you’re on the boat this weekend or grilling out in your backyard, you’ll want a good-looking shoe to wear throughout your adventures. The Gwynn’s shoe experts suggest the Swims loafers because they offer men classic style with functional value. These innovative and lightweight shoes are designed with an antibacterial mesh lining, side ventilation cutouts, and an anti-slip sole  – plus they're machine washable! And, of course, they’re a part of the sale too!


3.      Statement sunglasses

Protecting your eyes from sun rays should be just as important as protecting your skin with sunscreen. Whether you prefer a colored or classic black frame, these Frieda Rothman shades are the perfect sun blockers for the holiday weekend!
4.      A cooler you can trust

Coolers are the ultimate summer must have. That is, only if they keep your drinks cool throughout the day. Which is why Sovaro Coolers are a customer favorite. Available exclusively at Gwynn’s, these temperature locking containers are different because they are designed with a four-layer, natural cork insulation that blocks up to 97% of the sun’s heat and is impermeable to gas and liquids. No more melted ice, mildew or mold! Be sure to check out this exclusive outdoor favorite during the Memorial Day sale!


5.      The ultimate day to night summer dress

With warmer days comes wearing lighter outerwear, especially flirty sundresses you can wear both day and night. So, whether you’re attending the swankiest rooftop party or chowing down on homemade hamburgers, you’ll want to be sure you’re wearing something lightweight, flattering, and fun! And with our Buy 3 Get 1 Free Sale happening at Gwynn’s this week, you can complete your Memorial Day outfit with a new pair of shoes, gorgeous handbag, and statement worthy jewelry!


We hope you have a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend. We encourage you to stop by and take advantage of one of our biggest sales of the year. Everything, excluding cosmetics, is on sale Buy 3 Get 1 Free! We’re located at 918 Houston Northcutt Blvd in Mount Pleasant, around the corner from Starbucks. Regular store hours are Monday thru Saturday, 10am-7pm, and for your convenience we’re open Memorial Day Monday, 11am-5pm. Happy Memorial Day!

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