Monday, February 22, 2021

She's So Cold


Well, we're fresh out of the Polar Vortex and I have to say, it was quite the experience. Unlike Texas, which really bore the worst of it (those poor people, oh my god) we had a few seriously sub-zero days, broke some records, and had two days of rolling blackouts that we were warned about in advance. We lost power for 1 hour, early in the morning, so I just went back to bed. Danny and his dad both slept through it and didn't even notice. As poorly insulated as our home is, we had ample heat, hot water, and came through it by largely staying home. I did take the car for some longer drives to make certain the battery stayed in good charging condition, but otherwise we really had it pretty easy. Back when we were driving the Mighty Ford Tempo (RIP) we bought one of those portable battery chargers for the car. You do need to make sure it is charged up before leaving home, but having that thing with on super-cold days is a lifeline. We have a road assistance plan, but it can take time for them to get to you on a day when everyone else is breaking down. Here's a similar model to the one we have . 

Dressing for the cold typically means a poloneck and a cardigan for me. Beth's bunny slippers optional. 
A warm mohair cardigan does a good job keeping me warm, particularly when paired with a silk mock-neck beneath it. 
So fluffy, sure I looked like a cotton bud, but I was warm! 
Still, when the serious cold hits, only a Dale of Norway cardigan will do. I have three but thankfully I've only needed to wear one so far. It stays cold in Nebraska well into Aprl though, so I'm not packing them away just yet. I've had this one since the 80s and yes, it still fits, but not the same as it used to. That's OK, after close to 40 years there'd be something wrong if my body didn't shift around a bit, particularly after the menopause. 
Here's a closer look at the socks, given to me by a neighbour circa 1980. She couldn't get them over her feet, so I got them. They're still in good shape and the elastic is working after all these years of wear. I know it sounds terribly old-ladyish to say it but,  "They just don't make things the way they used to!" There, I've said it and it is true. 

This 1980s alphabet pullover would be perfect for a primary school teacher, which I no longer am. Well, that's not entirely true as Dan has been schooling remotely from home all year, but technically I'm not teaching. Believe me, he no longer requires my assistance unless it concerns laundry or food. The trousers are vinyl, and surprisingly warm-sort of like wearing a bin bag, but classier
I've had the shoes since high school. See what a sense of humour I had? I believe those are also the original laces! I don't wear them too often which probably contributes to their longevity. Here's a fun fact-in Chicago we would call these, "Gym Shoes". I never heard, "Sneakers" or "Trainers" until I moved to Boston. 

When it gets super cold outside, a Donegal Tweed blazer is a nice way to keep warm

Worn with a Loden skirt I bought in the 80s, I stay both dry and warm on snowy days. While Loden isn't waterproof, it is water resistant and dries with a quick shaking out. I've never regretted the money I spent on the suit though I rarely wear the jacket or trousers anymore. 
Sometimes a Pendleton '49er jacket will do. This one's a re-issue of their classic design. I have several, some original, some more recent and they're all fantastic. I don't know that I'd go as far as calling it a "Shacket" as people seem to be doing all over Instagram, but whatever you call them, they're an indispensable part of my winter wardrobe. 

Sometimes polyester flares find their way into my wardrobe.

No, I don't know why either! 
They're sooooo wide. 
Whatever inspired me to wear a leather waistcoat with a wool skirt, I couldn't say but I was pleased with the combination. 
This polyester coat dress has a sewn-in dickie sort of collar to look like I shirt. I might remove it and just wear the dress as a duster coat. I really don't care for it as-is. If it were good vintage I might be conflicted about taking it apart, but there's no shortage of polyester dresses from Wards (that I'm aware of anyway). 
This polyester dress however, isn't being messed-with (though it needs the hem repaired). Some things should be left as-is. 
A check of Instagram tells me it has been nearly two years since this dress was last worn. Interestingly, it was worn the day after the dress in the previous photo! I must have packed them away together. How strange is that? 
Today I wore two items I bought in the 90s and am still wearing. 
I'm not sure about wearing my hair up in braids. On some people it can be very Frida Kahlo, on me it comes across more Dorothy Day. I admired her, but I certainly never wanted to look like her! I am however thinking of cutting myself fringe. We'll see. 
Here's the newest Victorian hairwork brooch I ordered. I can't tell if those are tiny pearls or milk teeth fragments inside. There's three different hair colours inside and three "pearls". I hope it isn't three dead children, but childhood mortality was high then, and not at all uncommon. I'm hoping they're pearls but I haven't opened it to check. 
Here's a quick look at some accessories

I haven't really been baking, but I made Danny Fairy Bread for Valentine's Day and he thought it was fun. It isn't supposed to be made on raisin bread but that's all I had. I've learned not to question Australian foods because they always turn out to be better than expected. Sure, a slice of bread spread with margarine and cake decorations sounds bad on paper, but in reality it is a well loved treat. I didn't indulge because just the thought of my teeth on that makes me uncomfortable, but the teenager in the house said it was good and I'll take him at his word. 
On the dinner front about the only interesting thing I made recently that was photo worthy (Fish chowder doesn't photograph well) were these tofu kebabs I made in the oven. 

So that's about it here. I'm still getting caught up with your blogs (sorry, I'm trying to do better). For someone that's home all the time, I still seem to be buried under a mountain of work (The book plods on and on). I hope wherever you are you're comfortable and safe. Take care. 



Vix said...

I'm glad you survived the cold snap!
Loving your hair in plaits, they really suit you.
I've inherited the family's Victorian mourning jewellery, some with hair, one with a bit cut from great-great grandpa's best suit, never seen one with teeth yet! xxx

Polyester Princess said...

It's a good thing you've got such an extensive cold weather wardrobe! And it least it all gets worn, unlike mine. Most winters are so mild here I hardly have to break out any of it.
You look gorgeous in your alphabet sweater and vinyl trousers. We used to call trainers/sneakers "turnpantoffels" when I was growing up, which translates as Gym Shoes. How funny!
I'm actually loving those polyester flares, but my favourites by far are the maxi dress and - dare I say it - your 90s outfit. That blouse is gorgeous!
As is the jewellery, in particular the Victorian hairwork brooch! xxx

Beth Waltz said...

We, too, weathered the storm by staying inside. Snow drifted to the windowsills, making for noisy confrontations between cats within and birds without. (The feeder was hip-deep in ice, so I dumped bird feed in a pizza box and shoved it out the door.)

Layering seemed prudent, so I assembled my Michelin costume, an ancient thermal polo topped with a wool jumper my papa wore on the Murmansk Run in 1943. Toasty, but not nearly as luxurious and elegant as your silk mock neck paired with a mohair cardigan -- in winter white!

I also wear Navajo turquoise with black turtlenecks (or is that a dark green), but I have nothing so splendid as that squash blossom. Please add it to the List of Things Beth Gets in your will. As for the hair does fervently hope those are seed pearls.

Emily said...

I didn't know there are portable battery chargers for cars. What a great thing to have, especially in Omaha.

Where I grew up, I always heard "sneakers" or "tennis shoes." Nowadays, when I hear people call their shoes "kicks," it just sounds wrong.

I love the long dress with the daisies on it. Your hair brooch is intriguing, if a little sad. Let us know if you figure out if those are teeth or pearls.

So fairy bread is a real thing? I thought I invented it. See, when I'm too lazy to bake a proper batch of cookies, I'll spread margarine on bread and add one or more dessert-like toppings such as sprinkles, cinnamon, or sugar, and call it good. I wish I thought to call it fairy bread, which sounds so poetic. I cynically refer to my improvisational creations as "lazy cookies," "pretend cookies," or "fakerdoodles." : )

bahnwärterin said...

must try the veggi kebabs - they look yummy!
patience is the best way to survive a cold snap. and wearing wool in form of viking knit, loden and tweeds.... your versions look very chic!
can imagine the 80s vans and the alphabet sweater sell for nice prices today - at the right place.
stay warm! xxxx

Bibi Maizoon said...

Everyone should have some polyester flares. And, no they don't make things like they used to!
We are having a very warm winter here in Nepal.Thankfully not warm enough that my turnips, radishes, collards, kohlrabi, and bok choy have bolted.
I am loving that squash blossom necklace and had a plummy purple Pendleton jacket from the 80s I sed to love.
Good to hear your & yours fared well in the polar vortex!

Vronni's Style Meanderings said...

That was a cold snap and as you know we had one here, too. You certainly have the right wardrobe for the cold weather that's for sure! Some wonderful outfits and the accessories are always amazing. I love your new Victorian mourning brooch.

I love fish chowder; it's something I always look forward to eating in Ireland where it's called seafood chowder and has delicious freshly caught seafood in it. I'd love to see your recipe for fish chowder, Goody.

Hope your temperatures have begun to climb...

Anonymous said...

I am still trying to digest the fabulousness of the Chicago World fair bangle bracelet featured in your last post, then comes along your own Pendelton jacket and squash blossom neck piece.

So beautiful.

I have looked often at the Squash Blossom necklaces on Ebay . I am trying to resist . I have inherited some native American jewelry from my Mother and MIL , but nothing quite as lovely as your neck piece.

Glad you made it through the big freeze. Spring awaits.

Gail from Pa.

Señora Allnut said...

Lovely to see you looking fab despite that awful cold snap!. These outfits are really fabulous, whatever the weather, and your cardigans look particularly lovely with the skirts and brilliant accessorizing. You Rock, dear Goody. And I'm glad they are also warm and cozy!.
I have a weakness for the alphabet pullover, so 80's and adorable!
Also loving the flares, the leather vest (rocking it!) and the cute floral dress!, and always in love with your jewellery collection!
Those kebabs look really delicious and tasty! (any vegetable grilled on a skewer looks cool!)

Goody said...

Consider yourself lucky you didn't get anyone's teeth :)

Now that is curious! I mean, it makes sense though-they're shoes worn to a gym , or at least originally they were.

The necklace is very much a cheap, reproduction piece from the World Market. I'd never be able to afford a real squash blossom necklace. It is a convincing fake though.

If you travel a lot by car those jumpers are handy to have.
Fairy Bread is indeed a thing. Maybe you were Australian in a past life :)

Patience is indeed the way to survive it. A few months from now I'll be complaining about the heat:)

Hopefully the weather will hold back for you this year-it would be nice for you to get a harvest before everything rots in the heat. Gardening in the 21st century is such a gamble.

I had to adapt my ususal fish chowder to accommodate everyone's current diets, so it is dairy free, made with almond milk, potatoes are substituted with turnips, and I used all cod because that's what I had. I bulked it out with carrots which also provided a bit of colour. Not ideal, but when I have to work around low carb/dairy free it was the best I could come up with!

The squash blossom is a reproduction. I don't have that kind of money either!

@Senora Allnut
I'm discovering that just about anything can be cooked as a kebab, and it immediately makes it look more appealing.

Mim said...

I'm pretty sure they'll be pearls in the brooch - seed pearls for tears. I've got some as part of the decoration with hair in a mourning locket.

The polar vortex hit the news over here, and seeing people's images of property damage in Texas was shocking - so many burst and broken pipes. It must've hit a lot of people very hard.

Here in the west country, and I believe into south Wales, those shoes are known as 'daps'. I have no idea why, unless it's the sound they make on a hard gym floor!