Monday, January 06, 2020

If It Still Fits, Wear It

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1Mpb0Dc8y5utEiT1Ga7bWGzpemD0zoIDJ
I posted this outfit on Instagram, but thought it deserved a longer story here. I’ve owned the dress since the late 1970s, so there’s  a lot to say about it. 

I was getting to the age where I needed something “nice” to wear for various parties, wedding showers, graduations, etc. I’ve always had a sense of style however it rarely extended to anything that could be described as, “nice.” It wasn’t my fault punk happened😁. To counter my tendency to wear my dad’s old work shirts belted over shorts to look like a dress, my mother would on occasion purchase clothing for me that could pass as appropriate in most situations. 
At least 50% of what my mother bought for me wouldn’t fit as she was forever purchasing my clothes too small as some sort of motivation to make me thinner. I suppose if she’d thought about it, matronly looking polyester frocks weren’t terribly motivating to the average kid and less so to one with an already entrenched style, but eh, whatever. The rest of the time the clothes would fit, but were hideous.
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=16MicslQYkmkcj5odOwYvQuJaFv3iEkHP
Oh I know what you’re thinking and no, that green dress isn’t terrible-today. Forty years ago? Different story. I’ve kept this one all these years as it was the “least horrible” thing my mother ever purchased, if that gives you any idea. There was the dress with a border print of creepy , cursed , marionettes that looked like they could sneak off the fabric at night to go out and murder people in their sleep. There was the full length faux mink coat that made me look like a sixth grade Little Edie. There were the pale blue ultrasuede jeans with red contrast stitching. There were smock tops. Oh god, so many smock tops. There was the red Orphan Annie dress with a white collar. The day-glo orange playsuit made from terry/ toweling material that at least had a zip down the front facilitating a quick change to get out of the horrible thing. On and on. The green dress truly is the least worst thing she ever bought me.
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=157pP6jOKsX1zPOvZ3xe7xzUnHiO9ZV4-
Around that time I had a pair of shoes that I was quite attached to. Green suede clogs with a pointy toe and western stitching with yellow perseplex heels. They were magnificent. I loved those shoes until they were beyond repair by quite some ways. Obviously I wore them with everything because they were, as pointed out, magnificent. Not everyone appreciated my taste in footwear . I don’t know why. No accounting for taste I guess. Anyway, my sister was getting married (again) and I needed something to wear, so it was decided that the green dress would be acceptable. 

At some point our housekeeper pulled me aside and informed me that I needed to buy some proper shoes for the wedding. It was a casual reception but no, she wasn’t letting me wear those green suede clogs. If it had been my mother or sister insisting, I’d have ignored them, but I had enough respect ( and fear) to do what Ella Mae told me. I took myself over to I Magnin and bought a pair of peach coloured stilettos 😬. That would have been classy in 1982. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1ENGZKmDuuklQdWbKEGwLyKXDzMvI1ruF
Sadly, I don’t have a photo of the shoes but here’s the dress in action! My hair was an attempt to look “normal “ as it would typically be worn up in spikes. Instead I look like a five year old gave me a bowl cut. 

I was trying to remember if this is the oldest piece in my wardrobe that was purchased new, but it turns out  I still have a white polo neck with red hearts from 1977! It fits much tighter than it did at the time but is still wearable! I’m sure there are other pieces but I can’t think of anything at the moment. 

So that’s a bit more of the story of the green dress. How about you? Anyone still hanging onto clothes from their youth? Do Tell!

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

2020

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=19zK_9dIpO01lodj_CRFNfWRGCiOroImE
Okay, so the much longer post that was only half finished posted and then... whoosh, is gone? Kinda like my 2019 so perhaps that’s appropriate. Really, I haven’t much to say that’s worth worrying over it being lost but that’s an hour of my time I could have spent doing laundry. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1yZcm2Bc9_Djnwo895G9UJMZcwyN6qDEI
Eh, whatever. I wore a sparkly skirt for the last day of 2019. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1ai5a1HQt7WRlFQuYwkVC0N5NTqEvHq7L
I did the year of colour thing on my Instagram posts. I wear much more beige than I realised unless it is picking up my hallway. That doesn’t really explain all the other brown unless my hair counts? I did sneak in a bit more red this year. It feels like all I’ve been wearing is black of late. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1Y8IvXP0tJZbMhjQ1rd1SnWn3Ab4WeYRJhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1dzbNg9XaDdQU7mwSG5yVwr3_2zFOW1vuhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1wxZvWVOsNWyVlyTATepc83IOBiSpBZ5Shttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1fKB37spOqth0CdjR28FmfQUxxPmpjYHmhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1oELtuZV6lLetolAmnYoXmcnD8j1LzmeOhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1FNiSPe66w30SDe3AMIFRgHlYls2Mhq6Nhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1-POWtcHHK68UaJS0FC8Mt4ssycHWW9Jahttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1yBvyPJaFPNdO23ckVOkcL23ApYpTWyzz
The holidays were subdued this year with illnesses, family crisis, and a car that’s been in and out of the shop for the better part of the last two months. We are a one car family so as you can imagine this is a colossal pain in the ass. I dunno, call me crazy but a five year old car shouldn’t need a thousand dollars worth of repairs that aren’t covered by the warranty. I mean, 50,000 miles and it is falling apart?! Never again . I will NEVER buy another Ford. So yeah, 2019 was a bit shit. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1S0hK358Sna1URwux9kX8gb3-zGvM5EK1https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1MsHsGpB6bhW2TK_HnU1X_Y_vuH_8Gbwchttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1sMv6R1miLue8GvdFHTGdSkK6s0ZQmtDz
Enough of that. Let’s spend some time admiring this 1970s men’s suit I bought for less than a tenner. It has a matching waistcoat as well. It is rare for me to find a men’s suit that’s short enough but this one was perfect. Thank you small statured man for donating your old suit to New Life Thrift. I promise to take as good care of it as you did. It still had the ancient dry cleaning tags and pocket square. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1rVtLTdKiljrqj3JJsR6tFln_8nbg-k4a
I look like my dad ( but taller- He was a tiny guy ) All I need is a cigarette hanging out the corner of my mouth to complete the look. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=11iP3R2qTE5xx8MtQDIxew3ewSTb_i2Rz
Except when I wear my hair off my face. Then I get told I look like RBG😁which is totally a compliment! Danny finds it hilarious. Really though, I’ve heard worse. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1J76D_hbtvenUf7c8Nh7jXs4DzF2UX-Yh
This was Christmas day when it was something like 60 degrees outside. We have been having a very mild winter in Omaha. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1oZpnTcB1x0PDt_dftQ1im99BaRH6TssPhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1UhYbPq6QxFeMZL47Q8nEU7mj2NZzX6Xihttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1KX98kE55Tp7QrOnTGCLmwyFaErDfLQQXhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=11Wiy110rxy1k6wmhcykFbGoRkmPEPXfihttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1TCaiTKdbRaFnXXOnzocubryBE6E2tizu
Definitely don’t want to venture out on the ice covered lake in these temperatures . 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1GzIuFHmGv3-QdBw-w4j3aofReBVxQkE1
The belt and crazy buckle were my gift this year. Brace yourself-you’re in for something strange...
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1hl8nm6co--wQnLy5ZhjxyQ9WhTA9qlcN
Yep. I love the football players and pioneers representing our state😆. I mean, that’s actually pretty accurate! 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1Z8JQeDjBe7VxENK1Bia8bERIFsF5x2bfhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1_M2EQ4kaQCJchAizdF1-GY8WRJ5QWm95
I bought Dan a tin of Quality Street that he didn’t have to share. They still skimped on the green and purple which are the only ones anyone really want. Ah well, at least he enjoyed them. It was about the only thing he could eat without being in pain. The day after new years is “Getting scoped up and down day” ( sorry tmi) so you probably know how he’s spending New Year’s Day . Poor kid- but at least we can get some answers. He’s really been through it this year. We are going to have a do-over holiday in February. Instead of Christmas we’ll celebrate the Iowa caucus. I mean, our goose is kinda cooked so...appropriate , right?!
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1LGbxImnOn2Ef7O4BEbkonN-mA6ykfup3https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1uGZfKVbMo0jVzS2QmBk8GxDC30tMOQE-https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1VlZVKu2Xlvizq5rCeEJO9ovk-2FJKxmJhttps://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1Fg47R3NIWSPcaNkVeF-Kc_3QRkYJtkKz
The New Year craziness has already started and it isn’t ever close to midnight. The police are asking people not to shoot guns in the air to celebrate. To those who are outside America that might look like a typo but sadly it isn’t. They are also asking people not to bang pots and pans either. Damn, if you can’t randomly shoot guns or bang pots and pans might as well turn in early.🙄
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1rG3RG3pTtq-efcpbpswho0IYjXgwPLfz
I won’t be sorry to see the last of 2019. I hope 2020 brings everyone nothing but health and happiness! 

Sunday, December 22, 2019

December

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1E081HjhiiYI-kqDWuDq4luyw6sdFfyjlOh shit, another month spun by without my posting! I have an excuse though. After my last computer died I bought a new one that unfortunately cannot read the images on my phone. What’s a blog without photos?! So now I have downloaded an app for the phone. I am trying it out to see how this works. It isn’t perfect but maybe it will do for now. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1XIa2LIDctgE70Hcb_bSQBWbzIeUsmXnZ
Danny had his 15th birthday. I baked him a Chicago Cubs cake with the MLB trophy on top. It is a bit lopsided but I’m so pleased with how the fondant ivy came out. This was my first attempt working with the stuff. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=15BsG5TK-xIGFEOiE_thi08WLOypNwxy7
Buying him a giant inflatable hammer seemed like a good idea at the moment but I didn’t think about all the glass on the Christmas tree! So far there haven’t been any casualties. 
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1_IoouPOXU1wmv9HHi2R1gdtDikfTaTQk
How about a few holiday outfit snaps?
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1tEFGW7s4waJXAUOEECK1pBVX9u4-rQhx
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1kDJ-mMkSSN__e71zbacvbXLYnw09gp_i
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=15MF-SruesYcMQm61DZBzsgISjjwq-ulS
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1iWkVyMedE_QrKDTE_PguhdwovcqfmDCM
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1vC6LsQqbyLLoY1-Gl0uFG16G9ugxN4mY
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1ot5841U82b_69LSYhMrhdXve4TDCsVze
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1Y13ZNjen9qa3LUjWP97LjmpEk11lmaqU
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=15mH2LefsCN148TbMqSSCBpMZLTctZxuV
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1kZl0bhSJsbMEPftoc5VBqInzwIhi9Fv9
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1UCiyrwN_L74pUNIBt-tzUIdANuMK6kjE
And that’s about it for seasonally festive attire. 

I want to thank everyone for your lovely cards, email, and texts. This has been a hell of a difficult run the past couple months and knowing I have great friends to see me through it has been a great comfort. 

Let’s see how posting from the phone works out and with any luck maybe I can get back to a regular schedule here. Seasons Greetings to everyone!

Monday, November 18, 2019

November

November already, eh? Guess I have some catching up to do. Shall we start with some proper outfit photos? Good! Let's get started.

When I found this polyester crepe dress on the rail at Goodwill, I didn't have a clue how I'd style it, but it was so absurdly twee, I couldn't say no for .99 cents. At worst, I figured it would be easy enough to pass along. When something looks a bit too sweet, my fist reaction is to throw a bunch of black at it, and that's exactly what happened here...
This frock coat/dress zips from both top and bottom providing a variety of looks.
Here's a close-up of the hem details. It is such a lovely piece, but ever so difficult to photograph. You'll have to trust me that in person, the effect is stunning.
The belt buckle felt very Etruscan Revival to me, and honestly, what goes better with a frock coat? I found this stunning buckle on a ratty 80s vinyl belt. I disposed of the belt and was left with this gorgeous piece.
I have to share the lace edging on this Dior slip. It is such a beautiful thing, and was probably expensive retail.

Outfit Particulars:
1980s dress-Goodwill
Dior slip-Thrift World
Frock coat-Goodwill
Boots-K Mart
Tano of Madrid handbag-Goodwill
Belt buckle-Hand-Me-Ups
Jet brooch at neck-can't remember
French Jet (glass) beads-Goodwill
Fragrance-Maroussia (heavy on the civet, but still wearable. I'm indifferent though. Probably wouldn't buy more).

My little photobomber in the back seat. He's camera shy these days (like most teenage boys). Shame really, because his hair could have an Instagram account. Clearly, he doesn't get the good hair from me. Anyway, car selfie that makes me look much better than I do! What is it about light filtering through tempered glass that makes me look so good? I should take all my photos in the car..
...because most days, I look like this😏.
This outfit was easy to style as it was full-on 70s. A Gitano denim skirt, Cyn-Les novelty sweater, and a wooden box bag only needed a pair of clog boots to complete the look. Basically, that's me circa 1978, except the sweater would say, "Hug Me" because the adults in my life were trying to torture me. Thank god no one actually tried hugging me. 
 How cute is that bag?!
 I would have killed for boots like these in the 70s.
The detail on the sweater is remarkable. 

Outfit Particulars:
Cyn-Less 70s sweater-Hand-Me-Ups
Gitano denim 70s skirt-Goodwill
Boots-New Life Thrift
Handbag-Hand-Me-Ups
Fragrance-Avon Charisma (I have a lifetime supply stockpiled)

This was snapped in the basement of the Swanson  Library in Omaha. I live across the street. On Thursdays and  the first Saturday of each month the Friends of the Omaha Public Library have a  used books sale that is spread over three rooms in the downstairs area. Some books are withdrawn library editions but many are donations. For a very small sum you can find all sorts of wonderful books, which we took full advantage of over 10 years of homeschooling. The volunteers run it like a bookstore, and it easy easy to search by subject for titles that might interest you. There's a rare book room as well. If a trip to Omaha is in your future, I encourage you to visit the sale. In addition  to books there's vinyl records, ephemera, movies, DVDs and more. 
Built in 1966 on an oddly shaped parcel of land, the beautiful building more than makes up for the impossible to navigate parking lots. That the architect had the vision to plunk this brutalist style building into a tightly settled residential neighbourhood on one side, and the thoroughfare of Dodge Street on the other is something to appreciate. In 1966 this area of Omaha was still emerging from being farmland, but the city was expanding west. Originally, the library was planned for the even more residential neighbourhood of 87th and Pacific. When this land became available the plans changed. Inside, the building is flooded with natural light from the floor-to-ceiling windows. The library wasn't the only reason we moved to this part of Omaha, but it was certainly a consideration. 
Later that day, I stopped by another favourite piece of Omaha architecture to grab some photos before it is gone. The building has recently sold, and I wanted to capture the iconic sign for the Shorthorn Association before the new owners take it down. I hope they don't raze the building, but that's always a possibility. Let me tell you, standing in front of the Shorthorn Association building in Western wear gets some laughs from passersby. Thankfully, I didn't cause any accidents. It was heartening to see how many people wanted to wait until we finished before turning and ruining our shot. In this photo, I'm waving someone by. At the time this building went up in the 60s, this was considered, "The country." Anyone that's been stuck in traffic at 84th and Center lately could be forgiven for not believing it. 
Outfit Particulars:
vintage skirt-Goodwill
Vintage ultrasuede jacket (part of a suit)-Goodwill
Sweater-K Mart
Vintage tooled bag-New Life Thrift
Square-toed tall boots-Goodwill
Fragrance-I'm pretty sure I wore Bandit that day because I have a sense of humour

 Though there isn't a rule, I don't start wearing the satin/velvet/sparkles until mid-November. Of course a piece or two gets worn, but the really loud/festive stuff I leave for the Thanksgiving-Christmas holiday season. Pre-holiday, I tend to go with nice, mid-weight woolens unlike the heavy woolens I'll be needing through January and February. Midwestern winters are long, so I try to pace my wardrobe.
This 70s wool skirt has several colour matching opportunities. The herringbone texture adds some interest. I didn't need another wool skirt, but it was nicely lined and although no one sees it, the skirt hangs nicer for it. 
Outfit Particulars:
vintage wool skirt-Hand-Me-Ups
L.L.Bean lambswool cardigan-Goodwill
60s purple acrylic mock-neck sweater-Thrift World
Boots (I think) Goodwill
Fragrance:Vintage L'Origan
I paid .99 cents for that bottle at Goodwill. It was unopened. I just adore it on an autumn day. 

So, I have some good news/bad news/don't know yet news I'll slip in here since some of my Instagram followers already know I had a breast biopsy last week. The good news is that it is benign. I am relieved most of all because I don't know how on earth I would have paid for surgery/treatment/etc. I have insurance-very good insurance actually, but in the US that doesn't mean much if you still have co-pays, deductibles, and your 20% of god knows how many thousands of dollars. Just the diagnostics alone are putting a serious dent in my savings. So yes, it is a giant relief.  

I also had an abnormal Pap test. That happens, but once they ruled out infection and sexually transmitted disease, it started looking like I might have a problem. I have another biopsy scheduled for that at the start of next month. I'm not terribly worried, and should it come to a hysterectomy, that's fine-I am long through with having babies. 

The really scary problem, which we know is a problem is cardiac. Oh, I hear you all going, "Well duh! You've known about this for ages." That's true. Imagine my surprise when everyone suddenly decided it was a very serious problem that needs to be addressed now! Look, I've lived though a direct hit from a tornado. If I didn't panic then, I'm not going to panic now. I did realise that part of the reason I was ignoring it was because I loathed my GP. I've only seen him twice in several years and once was for a concussion. I knew with all this potential medical stuff ahead of me that I didn't want to be dealing with him, so I called the hospital and asked to be referred to a woman doctor, preferably younger. They sent me to an osteopath instead of an M.D. I didn't notice that until they sent an appointment confirmation but I went, and I like her! I really detest the medical nonsense (and arrogance) so this was a happy accident. She can still prescribe medicine and order tests, do hospital admissions, etc. If I'm looking at a bunch of crap from illness, the less time  I spend dealing with Mr. Lab Coat's ego, the better. But hey, there's more good news-I'm not diabetic. I didn't think I was, but if you are a fat woman walking into a doctor's office the first thing they want to check is your blood sugar. I am not even remotely diabetic. At all. What's more, my "Good" cholesterol is very, very good (because I am a distance runner, duh) but the bad is very, very bad. I've been a vegetarian since 1983 and that's probably a very good thing. So no Christmas cheese for Goody this year, unless they make one laced with statins. I did buy some vegan Parmesan which isn't the same but also isn't terrible.

Then Danny got sick. He's been dealing with this particular issue for over a year, but it has escalated and well, yeah. I won't go into detail out of respect for his privacy but will say contracting e coli in addition hasn't been fun. If you ever need to find a toilet in Omaha-just ask, he knows where they are. All of them. 

Okay, enough about all that! I just wanted to post an update to no one starts thinking the worst. It was funny that all this started happening after we wrote wills and set up power of attorney in the event of illness. Talk about being Nerfed by the universe! In the process of pre-planning my funeral arrangements I found out Launer will make bespoke handbags. I think that would be an awesome final resting place for my ashes unless they can make me a bespoke bodybag to be buried in. It would probably still be cheaper than a casket-and better constructed. I'm guessing they wouldn't do a body bag (LV would do it for sure, but where's the cachet in that?!) because it would "dilute the brand image". I mean, maybe if the Queen requested it, but not for someone like me. If I croak I'm counting on you guys to help crowdfund my Launer final resting place!

More outfits to get our minds off all that? 
Dress like a 70s geography teacher day, 2019. 
just add a corduroy blazer...
...with elbow patches. That's it! Sorry, that's
 a blurry photo! 

This time of year the indoor light at our place is terrible, but I try to work the shadows to an advantage by taking "atmospheric" photos on the stairs. 
This early 80s polyester dress is brown with pink/mauve details. The boots are brown as well though they look somewhat purple in the photo. I have purple boots-perhaps I'll try that next time. 
Can't go wrong with vintage plastic on your arms
Outfit Particulars:
80s dress-New Life Thrift
80s cardigan with Korea label-Goodwill
vintage bracelets-mostly Goodwill/Thrift World
Belt-Goodwill
Boots-Goodwill
Fragrance-Ralph Lauren, Romance (I used to loathe this but now suddenly appreciate the rose/oakmoss/ginger thing. Found a large bottle for a buck in the thrifts and have completely come around on this one. Sometimes I like bright scents, and there's no denying it is that). 

Finally, the best thing I bought recently! We had several different meals from it including a lovely curry made from the greens. I've never been a meal-planner. Instead, when I go to the market, I buy what's inexpensive and looks nice, then build meals around what's available. For a few dollars this cauliflower kept us well fed, and on budget. The eagle eyed might have spotted several canisters of Pringles on the counter behind me. Those are not mine. Pringles are disgusting. If I'm going to eat crisps, they're going to be worth eating. I do not understand teenage tastes😀.

Whew, that was quite the update! Here's hoping your November is going well.