July 31, 2009

Caroline's Tiger Pause - When I fell in love with Clemson...

September 19, 1987 was the day I officially fell in love with Clemson. I had been in like with Clemson for as long as I could remember, but this was the game when my passion was truly ignited and I was made a Tiger forever.
I was born with orange blood in my veins. My father’s side of the family has been solid orange since my grandfather played football and basketball at Clemson before his career was interrupted by World War II. I always enjoyed games and loved wearing my cheerleading outfits, but September 19, 1987 was the day when Clemson football became an obsession.

September 19, 1987 was the day Clemson played Georgia in the Valley. It was the day when we defeated the bulldogs on a final second field goal by David Treadwell, Clemson 21 Georgia 20. That game is completely ingrained in my memory.

I was 8 years old on that day and was extra excited about the game because so much of my family was in town. After a quick and fun tailgating reunion with the cousins we started to make our way into Death Valley. My seats were terrible and so was the weather. It was a rainy day, and I was relegated fairly high in the upper deck with my cousin Mary Lynn. I really looked up to Mary Lynn growing up, so I was excited to be sitting with her, but I went so completely Clemson crazy during that game I am pretty sure she would not return the compliment.

The weather was more than unpleasant, but the second you came into Clemson there was such electricity in the air. And the current only grew stronger as you walked into the stadium. We took our seats about 45 minutes before the game, and already Death Valley was about 80 % full and the entire crowd was so excited. The feeling just grew as the game went on. I will never forget how loud it got in there, particularly in the 4th quarter. Those last few drives by the Georgia offense the sound of the crowd was just thunderous. I remember yelling and screaming my heart out, shaking my pom pom like crazy (and accidentally in my neighbors faces to the embarrassment of my cousin). You could physically feel the tension in the game.

Our final drive, when Terry Allen (one of my all time faves) drove the ball down to the Georgia 4 and Treadwell knocked it through the uprights I positively exploded along with the rest of Death Valley. I just remember how incredibly loud it was and that it was the first time I really felt the unified euphoria that happens in Death Valley all of the time, and also that something special in the air that is just Clemson. That day honestly changed me, and I have never forgotten it.

When we finally made it to the car and made our way home, I was so excited about the game that I talked in the loudest rasps I could muster because I had completely lost my voice. My total happiness with the outcome kept me from realizing that I was actually sick. By the time we made it home, I had a fever and what turned out to be a nasty case of strep throat. There is a little part of me that still thinks that all of the yelling I did that day had a little something to do with it. If it did-it was totally worth it!

September 19, 1987-that was the day I fell in love with Clemson; the day I realized there really was something in those hills. It was the day I knew there just are not too many places on the earth better to be than Death Valley when Clemson is winning a big game. The day I understood that 80,000 people can collectively feel all of the same emotions at the same time. September 19, 1987 was the day that I truly became a Clemson Tiger.

So what was the day you fell in love with Clemson? What day did you become a true Tiger? Please share your stories with the blog—I can’t think of a better way to get pumped for football season than reading about the moments that all of you became Clemson Girls.

I want your contributions to this sports blog - feel free to send ideas and suggestions my way. In the coming weeks I will be doing a preseason football preview, highlighting the offensive and defensive starters, highlighting the freshman we can expect to see play in the fall. It should be an exciting year in Clemson sports (it will take pages to cover my excitement of the upcoming basketball season alone). But I also want us to talk about the moments that make Clemson special to all of us. So come on Clemson girls—use your voice and tell us what makes you Tigers. :)

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Naming Caroline's Blog Posts Contest Winner

Congratulations to Kathy Oliver McClelland, from Chapin, SC, for winning the naming contest for Caroline's weekly sports blog posts. Kathy's parents live in Clemson and driving up on Saturdays for Clemson games is a family tradition.

Caroline's blog posts will be called...drum roll please.... Caroline's Tiger Pause! Thanks to all the Clemson Girls for your submissions. Caroline's first intro post will be posted later this afternoon - so be sure to check back with the blog later today.

Kathy has won a unique Clemson prize - a beautifully, embroidered 15 x 15" Tiger Rag from one of Clemson Girl's new sponsors, McHenry Stitchery, who sells their custom Clemson Tiger Rags at http://www.clemsontigerrags.com/. Thanks McHenry Stichery for the prize donation!

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July 29, 2009

More Orange and Purple Dresses - Perfect for Clemson gamedays!

Macy's must be a closet Clemson fan. Not only are they having a great sale on their Web site right now, but a lot of their dresses come in orange and purple! There are too many to post in this post, but I'll feature some of my favorites.

This basic orange dress has a nice fit to it and looks comfortable. It would look great with gold jewelry (Clemson of course) and gold flip flops or sandals. I would probably pair it with a white tank top underneath since the neckline is a little low for my taste. Afterall, Clemson games are family friendly. :) It is also available in purple, but the purple doesn't look like the right shade.

Am I seeing double? This adorable cap-sleeve dress comes in both purple and orange! I like this dress because you could wear this to the hot games with flip flops and to the cooler games with a jacket and knee high boots - making it well worth the $29.25 price tag. It might actually be worth purchasing one of each color!

I loved this dress when I first saw it - it's fun and flirty and no gameday tan lines! However, I wasn't a big fan of the black belt - I'm wearing it to a Clemson game, not Halloween. The belt, though, is detachable -- so you can use any other belt you'd like (or none at all). Wet Seal has some great selections of pretty inexpensive belts that come in various colors. The one pictured above comes in purple, gold, brown - or any other funky color you wanted to pair with this dress.

I love, love, love this dress. I really like the rosette detail around the neckline of the dress. I also like that the waist is fitted to help define your figure. This dress would be so cute paired with simple, silver Clemson jewelry and tan or brown flip flops. The dress is so effortless - you'll look all dolled up for the game by just putting it on!

Another dress from Macy's that is available in both orange and purple. This dress features a unique neckline that's great for those of you who are like me and aren't as blessed in the chest area as others. The dress looks super comfortable and looks like it has a very easy fit - not too clingy. I think the orange dress would look great in September paired with gold, purple, or orange flip flops - and great for the cooler games in October with a tan corduroy, mid-thigh length jacket and brown knee high boots. Again, at only $28.50 you might be tempted to buy one in each color!

So...what do you think? Would you wear any of these dresses? Which one is your favorite? Which one is your least favorite?

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July 28, 2009

Meet Caroline - Clemson Girl's New Sports Reporter

Caroline was a Clemson fan before she was even born. Clemson traditions are deeply rooted in her family. Born and raised in the small town of Edgefield, SC, Caroline has probably been to every Clemson home game since the day she was born. Caroline is the girl you take to parties and make bets with the gentlemen there that she will know more about Clemson sports than they will - and she always does. Caroline can rattle off Clemson sports stats faster than you can say your own name. Ask her any question about Clemson sports, past...present...or even future... and she will know the answer.

She attended Clemson and graduated in 2002 with a degree in History and a minor in English - but her lifelong dream is to be a college sports reporter for ESPN. In June of 2008, Caroline gave birth to her very own "Tiger" cub - a future Clemson sports star, born at a VERY healthy 11 pounds! He is just shy of 11 months old and he's already had written offers from both Coach Dabo and Coach Oliver.

Caroline has joined the Clemson Girl team as our very own Clemson sports reporter. All year round, she'll be giving us her sports predictions, recaps of the games, her favorite Clemson sports memories, and so much more. Caroline wants to give all Clemson Girls, who are just as sports crazy as she is, a place to have conversations about Clemson sports.

Stay tuned to the blog for Caroline's sports posts - her very first will be later this week! We hope to make ClesmonGirl.com the place where Clemson Girls can voice their opinions and thoughts about anything Clemson sports-related....and be heard loud and clear!

ClemsonGirl.com Contest: We would like to give Caroline's regular posts a catchy name - please submit your idea for what her posts should be called by either commenting on this post or by emailing us at clemsongirlblog@gmail.com. Make sure you include your name and email address (we will not sell or reuse your email address in any way). If we pick your name, we'll announce it in Caroline's first blog post along with your name and send you a free Clemson prize!!

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July 26, 2009

Quick Poll - Would you wear this pricier, orange and purple dress to a Clemson football game?

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July 24, 2009

Turn an ordinary dress into a Clemson game day original

It's not always easy to find orange or purple dresses to wear on game days - especially in the right shade of orange or purple. And when you buy a dress from a chain store, like Victoria Secret or Target, you always run the risk of seeing about 20 other Clemson Girls wearing the same dress on the same game day.

So why not create your own original Clemson dress? It's easy to do and affordable. Purchase a basic orange, purple, or white dress - something plain and simple in style with little to no ruffles, flounces, etc.

Here's an example of a simple white dress from Kohl's (huge sale this weekend by the way):

Now make this dress a Clemson original - there are many different options, but I think this dress would be cute with some tiger paws monogrammed along the bottom - all the way around the hem or just in the front. Monogramming prices vary based on the stores you take it to, but most stores in South Carolina who monogram will monogram Clemson tiger paws.

A cheaper, DIY (do it yourself) option is to buy some orange fabric paint - create a stencil using a printed out Clemson tiger paw - trace it on a thick piece of cardboard - cut out the tiger paw. Then paint using the stencil onto the dress - might look a little more obvious that it wasn't originally part of the dress as say the monogram would - but doable nonetheless.

Next, add a bit more detail by purchasing a thick orange ribbon (Walmart, Michaels, etc.) and tying it around the wait as an accent.

Simple steps and you now have your very own original Clemson dress design:

Obviously created in PhotoShop, but you get the idea!

Then pair the dress with a cute orange necklace, like this one from Target for only $16.99:

What do you think? Have you ever made your own game day outfit? If so, please share pictures with us - email me at clemsongirlblog@gmail.com.

Would you wear the Clemson made over dress above?

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July 23, 2009

Clemson Sunset

Received this by email today from a friend. Photo Credit - Unknown

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July 22, 2009

Quick Poll: Would you wear these flip flops to a Clemson game?

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July 21, 2009

Top 5 things to pack in your purse for a hot game day

Football game days are marathons - you wake up early to beat traffic and get the best tailgating spot. Then you tailgate before the game and then after the game. It's a looooong day. And it's even longer the first couple of home games in September when the games are usually during the day (I hate noon games!) and you sit through the game with the sun beating down on your face for a good solid four hours - assuming we don't go into overtime. And how do some of you tailgate without tailgate tents?

Some of us tailgate at one spot the entire day, but six times out of ten, it's not your tailgate - and not your car. You parked at the Brooks Center and you're now tailgating at Little John. Or you don't even have a tailgate base - you're a tailgate hopper who walks around and visits different friends and family at different tailgates spread across campus. Did I mention how hot the September games are??

So it's important, no...vital to be prepared and have your purses packed for a long game day. Now I'm going to assume that you have the necessities that all of us ladies pack in our purses - money, license, basic makeup, brush, and oh yeah.. your game ticket. But there are a few strategic "extras" that I would like to recommend to all Clemson Girls that you should include in your purses on game days. Some of these are pretty obvious, but you'd be surprised how many people forget or don't think to include these items.

  1. Battery Powered Fan - Ok, so a lot of people buy those dinky little small fans with two plastic or rubber blades....you can wear it around your neck and it takes two double A batteries. I'm not talking about those fans - you should get a REAL battery powered fan. The best battery powered fans aren't going to be tiny, but they are compact enough to fit into a medium to large sized purse - or at least attach to your purse strap. The best fan to look for is a fan that takes D batteries. These fans have 72 hours of batter life - no joke.

    Target has some really good options for battery powered fans. Last year I bought a square fan (about 5" x 5") that folded in half and fit in most of my purses. I used it for the entire first half of the season (I'm very hot-natured) and the batteries never died and the power of the fan never died down. It always worked. I would sit in the noon games with the sun beating down, sit the fan on my lap and literally had a constant breeze on my face. It made all the difference in the world. This fan on Amazon.com is very similar to the one I purchased - takes 8 D batteries and cost only $9.99. This one is white..Clemson-ize it and paint tiger paws on it with an orange paint pen. And trust me, having a big, battery powered fan makes you very popular among your friends. :)

  2. A Washcloth - I know some people carry travel tissues in their purse, and this is all well and good, however I have found that a washcloth is much more useful and reliable on those hot game days. Washcloths are absorbent - and keeping a small one in your purse is convenient when you start to sweat...dripping sweat....during the game. You can pull it out and pat your forehead dry, your shoulders, back, neck - anywhere that the sweat starts to accumulate. And on the really hot days, if you're wearing your hair down you can sit the washcloth on the back of your neck so it absorbs your sweat instead of your hair. And when you get back to your tailgate after the game and you've been in direct sunlight for almost four hours.... dip your washcloth in the cold cooler ice water..ring it dry...and sit it on the back of your neck. Siiiiigh.

  3. Face Sunscreen - You would be surprised how many people forget to pack this in their purse. I am very guilty of this and often end up asking the other fans around me if I can borrow their suntan lotion. So this year I'm going to be a lot better about packing suntan lotion - and not just any lotion - suntan lotion designed for your face. The suntan lotions designed for your face are less oily, better for around your eyes, and help prevent breakouts. You also need a higher SPF since you'll be in direct sunlight for most of the game (unless you're in the West End Zone...lucky!) I recommend Hawaiin Tropic's Faces Oil Free Sunblock, SPF 30. You can get 3 4 oz. bottles on Amazon for only $23.13. These look small enough to slip in your purse - and if not, buy some travel containers at the drug store to put the sunscreen in.
  4. Travel-size Deodorant - This one is pretty obvious... but I just don't think that one application of deodorant in the morning before you leave for your marathon game day excursion is enough to keep you 'fresh' the entire day. Ok, so we all know after a day of sweating you're not going to smell great - whether you mask it with body spray or not. But you can reapply deodorant periodically throughout the day - right before the game, after the game, etc. You'll feel better and you'll sweat a little less. Don't apply it while you're sweating... that won't do any good.. here's where item #2 comes in handy again. You can get travel-size deodorant at any Walmart, Target, or most drug stores.
Ok, so I saved the very best for last.... you're going to either laugh when you read this, be shocked, or agree with me and say this is a GREAT idea.... drum roll please......

5. Change of Underwear - Ok, ok, ok... hear me out before you make any judgments. Think about it - you're out in the heat ALL DAY... and you're sweating and well...yeah.... so nothing feels better after a really hot game then a change of underwear. I know this is probably passe to talk about, but it really is a good idea. Pack an extra pair in a ziplock bag and stick it in one of the zippered pockets of your purse - hidden away. Then after the game, run by the restroom and change. It will make you feel a little less icky and sweaty. You'll feel so much better! If you don't want to carry it in your purse, leave it in the car at the tailgate and get it when you return. Whether you're tailgating some more, going downtown, or getting in the car for a long ride home -- you'll be so glad to have a fresh change.... I promise. And yes...I'm speaking from experience.... :)

Ok... so there you have it. My top 5 items that you should have for every September football home game.

So now it's your turn - what would you add to this list? What do you ALWAYS pack in your purse for Clemson games? Any 'surprising' or 'unexpected' items like #5 that you don't leave home without? Please comment on this post and share with all the other Clemson Girls!

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July 19, 2009

Fun Clemson items at your local Cracker Barrel

I went to Cracker Barrel for lunch today - the Cracker Barrel off of I-26, Exit 19 in Spartanburg - and lo and behold I saw some cute Clemson stuff and took some pictures. I didn't get prices, but I am digging the blinking 'traffic light' and the serving dish and pitcher. I have the Clemson stone coasters in my car, and I love them - I highly recommend buying some. They keep that nasty drink ring from collecting in your cup holders in your car.

Here are the pictures I took - what do you think? I wonder if all the Cracker Barrels in South Carolina carry these items?

This hat is hilarious - but probably a little too warm for most Clemson games. Perfect for keeping your head warm during the USC game perhaps - although it is in Columbia this year, meaning it will probably still be 100 degrees even in November.

Ok, these things evidently cover your luggage handle? I've never seen this before - but I guess it's a good way to distinguish your bag from everyone elses on the baggage carousel.

And this last picture below is not Clemson related really (except we're all 'Smarties'..ba dum da), but I've never seen Smarties this big, so I had to take a picture. :)

So what other random places sell Clemson items that you would never suspect?

July 18, 2009

Quick Poll - Would you wear this top to a Clemson game?

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July 15, 2009

Inexpensive, comfortable dresses for the first home game

Clemson's first football game this year is a home game vs. Middle Tennessee. The game starts at 6pm (hooray, not a noon game), but it will still most likely be in the 90's during the game - and unless you have high powered fans surrounding your tailgate, you're going to sweat. So the most ideal game day outfit for the first game is a comfortable, cotton dress.

Here are some cute, simple dresses (and some shoes!) from a couple of my favorite online clothing sites - and they are all very, very affordable!

I love this dress from Forever21.com. I'm convinced that someone who purchases for Forever21 is a Clemson fan - they ALWAYS have dresses that come in orange and purple. I like this dress because it looks comfortable and it looks fitted, but not too fitted - so if you eat too much at your tailgate, you can mask your belly. And pairing it with orange jewelry and orange shoes like the ones above from GoJane.com would be so cute.

Another dress from Forever21.com, and this one is available in both purple or orange. This dress also looks super comfortable, and hey... no tan lines. :) What I really love, is that it's totally re-wearable if you really wanted to. You can wear it as a dress for the hotter games, then slip on some leggings and wear it when it starts to cool down in the middle of the season. Then, for the October and November games, wear it with skinny jeans and knee high brown boots and a jean jacket or long brown sweater with a brown belt.

Another Forever21.com orange dress with a really cute stone halter. I could totally see this dress paired with a really cute pair of brown gladiator sandals. I think either the lighter tan sandal or the darker brown, braided sandal from GoJane.com would work.

One thing I love about game days is that it's the only day you can get away with wearing orange with purple. I love mixing the two colors on game days with my outfits. This orange tiered dress from GoJane.com looks really comfortable, and the tiers keep it from being just any ordinary tank dress. However, I think it needs a purple tank top of some kind underneath it to add some color, like the one pictured above from Target. Then finish it all off with a really cute pair of comfortable purple shoes, like these which are also from GoJane.com.

There's no excuse not to be cute AND comfortable for the really hot game days in September. And I love how all of these options are so affordable - more money left over for tailgate beverages. :)

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July 14, 2009

Welcome to Clemson Girl

I love Clemson football. I love going to the games, tailgating, the energy of the fans, and the entire game day experience. And as a typical Southern girl, I like to look cute for the games. Some people don't understand, but dressing up for football games is fun. However, it's not always easy to find the perfect game day outfit when A) your alma mater colors are orange and purple, B) the school has a habit of scheduling games at noon in 90+ degree heat, and C) you don't want to spend an arm and a leg on an outfit that will most likely get grass stains, sweat stains, and/or beer spills on it. When I'm shopping and I see something orange, I automatically think of whether or not it would become part of a future game day outfit. And its not just the game day outfits - I love tailgates, floozy koozies, orange jewelry, etc. etc. etc.

So I decided to turn my obsession with all things orange, purple, and girlish into a blog. I plan to blog about Clemson game day potential clothing, essentials for us ladies for tailgating and game day survival, tailgate recipes, decor, and share photos of other Clemson girl fans at the games - the chic and the not so chic.

I'd also like reader contributions -- if you have a Clemson game day outfit, tailgate idea/recipe, or anything Clemson and girlish you'd like to share, send it along. This blog is for all female Clemson fans to get together and share all things Clemson and girlish!

I hope you stick around and enjoy this blog... let me know what you think.
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