Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

Wishing you all a warm, safe and
happy holiday season.
Peace and love to you and yours.
Merry Christmas and may
God bless us, every one!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

My Gift For You

Darkness cannot drive out darkness;
only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate;
only love can do that.
These beautiful words came to me via an email,
from a friend who closes her messages with a daily sentiment
so I know it was on Martin Luther King Day this year when I got it.
I loved the words so much I placed them at the bottom of my blog page
as a constant reminder, a subtle motto, if you will.
Like you, I went through shock, heartbreak, anger and dispair
with yesterday's tragic news. While going through my mind
what seemed to be an endless string of recent horrific events and
thinking we're all doomed to a deep decline to you-know-where,
I remembered, and quickly snapped to.

If you know me, I'm always late. But I am early this time.
For this was going to be my Christmas post.
Many years ago, I learned of another beautiful concept:
the Alternative Christmas Market, an effort to reclaim
the Christmas story by offering some options
to the consumer frenzy that has taken over the season.
I've sent five gifts and one of them is for you:
Floresta (Plant with Purpose) - The poorest farmers get the worst land to farm, often steep hillsides vulnerable to erosion. Planting trees controls erosion and improves soil fertility, leading to better crop productivity and income. Trees can reduce disease by improving water and air quality. Trees can also provide fruit to eat and wood to use or sell for additional family income, helping to keep families together because men no longer need to leave their villages to find work to feed their families. Last year, more than 700,000 trees were planted.
Pay it Forward with Goats - Participating families "pay it forward" by giving a pregnant goat to another rural family. Recipients can generate twice the average per capita income of $300 by owning a pregnant goat. This program has brought relief to communities. Some have experienced a 75% decrease in malnutrition rates due to the addition of protein to their diet. You can help reduce hunger and poverty with the gift of a pregnant goat.
Protect Rainforests for Indigenous People - Probably no other place is more critical for the survival of humanity than the Amazon. The Amazon Basin harbors the largest remaining tropical forest on our planet and plays a key role in global carbon cycles and climate. Over the last 40 years, one-fifth of the Amazon rainforest has been cut down, and farms, ranches and roads reach further into it each day. The Nature Conservancy is empowering people to implement resource management and development projects to conserve 140 million acres of the Amazon by 2015.
Rescue Girls from Forced Prostitution - The horror of sexual slavery is a reality for many helpless women and children. International Justice Mission (IJM) works to rescue victims of forced prostitution in India and Southeast Asia by gathering evidence of trafficking and sexual exploitation and collaborating with local authorities to bring perpetrators to justice. Victims are placed in aftercare homes where they receive rehabilitation services and begin to restore their lives. IJM investigations have resulted in convictions for traffickers and freedom for more than 1,000 girls and women.
Yaks for Youth - In the Tibetan regions of remote western China, orphaned and destitute children live and learn in rural boarding schools under harsh conditions. High altitude and severe weather make it difficult for schools to receive needed supplies. Poor nutrition makes it hard for students to concentrate and increases absences due to illness. Yaks provide milk, butter, cheese, and yogurt for food, and dung for fuel to heat stoves for warmth and cooking. There are currently more than 1,150 children attending the poorest schools on the program’s waiting list.
These are but five of many gifts available.
There are no internal fees or administrative costs withheld and
100% of the gift is passed on to the chosen charities.
They only add $3 to each order (that could include multiple gifts) 
for operations and funding the credit card fees.
I think every little bit of good
helps to drive out the bad.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Na Nana Na Na

Resisted the french hen sweater.
And passed on the factory puffin sweater.
Because I have the original puffin sweater from 2008.
It's not merino wool/nylon/cashmere.
It's not viscose/nylon/wool.
It's 100% cashmere. The good stuff.
From the good old days, baby.
I don't mean to gloat.
I just want to do a happy dance that I have it.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Very Late Thanksgiving

You call that a gravy boat?
This is a gravy boat.
You're supposed to read that
with this in mind:
In addition to big bird (a 23.7 pound turkey)
we did 10 pounds of candied yams
five pounds of mashed potatoes,
two different stuffings (they filled two extra large roasting pans),
two kinds of cranberry sauce,
some peas so we can pretend we ate vegetables,
and had pumpkin pie and ice cream.
We did not host dinner for 20, there were only five of us.
Which is why I was glad I didn't glam,
I had all these ideas but I wore this (perfect wear for peeling potatoes and stuffing stuffing):
This is obviously an awfully tardy post.
And an awkward segue to say thank you.
(With all good intentions I meant to do it way before now.)
First to M of Apples & Pencil Skirts
and rynetta of jcrewismyfavstore
for giving me
Then to Andrea of Tweed and Toile
for awarding me
And last but certainly not at all the least
for bestowing on me the
There are questions to be answered and other bloggers to nominate.
But I figure I should get on with at least the thanks
so I'm not even more delinquent with each passing day.
{hangs head in shame for realizing how overdue I am}
Is it really true better late than never?
And can overalls ever work with heels?

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

cRaZy PaNtS!

Am I becoming like John? It's a scary thought, isn't it?
Shopping Celle did a great job reviewing the Collection graphic-print pant on the JCA post. Like her, I thought it too similar to the Bennett cropped chino in snowcat. But when the price dropped to a fraction of its former self and an extra percentage off was in effect, I couldn't help it, I pounced on my size.
Good thing too, because I agree they are well worth it.
(And here's the aforementioned snowcat bennett to compare.)
The snowcat is black and white
while the graphic-print is navy/mint on ivory.
The fabric is 81% wool with the slick of 19% silk.
The pants are lined in 100% poly that wasn't annoying.
In the pic above, you can see the single shallow pleat 
easing into the crease down the pant leg.
They are about an inch longer than the capri length.
(I'm 5'2"-ish and often wear regular length capri pants.)
Though the rise is higher, the pants did not sit at my natural waist,
it's more like a little below belly button.
Only one rear pocket is flapped and buttoned, the other is welted. 
I didn't find the hip and thigh fitted or the leg skinny.
But this is not the first time I've differed with the CFS.
The good tailoring and lovely wool/silk material are what
make the trousers deserving of the Collection status.
The wool/silk combination is warm and sturdy,
with some crispness and a lot of body. I love it.
I suppose it's soft, but "supremely" soft?
I think not. Supremely soft is what I'd like to think
as appropriate for Collection cashmere. 
(More on this to come for a Wednesday post at some point. That's a hint on the content.)
A parting shot ... I felt a little scandalous snapping this dressing room pic.
But I was merely taking a picture of my outfit comprising things
I already owned, showing the crazy pants with a sweater from 2007.
Think I'll be talking about this sweater in that upcoming post too. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Buttoned Up Sequins

Per  reader request, I paired the Collection sequin colorblock tank
with the café capri in wool. While she thought these things for
upcoming holiday events, I wore this to work. Yes indeedy I did.
I felt a little bit like Tabitha's giraffe because hardly anyone batted an eye.
It was just me attempting a human disco ball. Again.
The rectangle sequins give an interesting effect. But!
I just noticed the sequins are not as as densely placed as "advertised."
See for yourself:
Or maybe once worn, or even taken out of the package,
the sequins go every which way askew to look more sparse.
I don't think so though but I still like the top.
 If you're the type who has to straighten every sequin, do not get this top. Trust me, it's impossible and you'll only lose your mind trying.
You must just go with it.
Everything else is pretty much as described, including being of viscose.
(The polka-dot sequin top that was incorrectly described now has its description corrected to cotton.)
And I'm risking the look of floods wearing the regular length
backordered forever navy wool capri pants because
I can never get comfortable with the petite length.
This post was meant to go on to the shoes and my favorite little
clothes steamer but I ran out of steam (ha! knee slapper!) so I'm afraid
there will be a part two and possibly three to come.
A parting phrase was also gonna happen but why is it
almost every everyday expression has something nasty
attached to it by the Urban Dictionary?

Monday, November 12, 2012

At Last! Weather.

Like the face that launched a thousand ships,
the lovely Tabitha compelled me on at least two coats.
She probably sold a thousand Encore/Ethel trenches with this.
And the glimpse of her in bad weather got me stalking,
successfully so, for the linen slicker.
I became feverish and was thrilled when I scored it some months back
on sale and with an extra percentage off .
I couldn't wait for a spit of weather to wear it.
Finally! I did and with a nod to JC's competely impractical styling.
No, no ... there was a threat of rain but it didn't.
As for Helen, did she or didn't she?
I thought the Trojan War was myth but now I'm not so sure.
I've read you become a power researcher when you blog.
So why is the past tense of read also read but read differently?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Buy the Book

As a child, I was an insatiable reader.
Before I was 10, I had my own set of hard-bound classics and my face was often buried in one. I could scarcely put it down at the dinner table.

This continued in my teens and twenties. On the weekends, it was not unusual for me to read 10 more pages, another chapter and since it's 4:17 with only 23 pages left so why not just finish the book before 5 a.m.

In my thirties, my weekly treat was a pot of fresh coffee with heavy
cream on hand and being left alone to savor the Sunday Los Angeles Times.
Saving the Parade magazine for last of course.

I had a giant -- it must have been a good 3" thick and 15" x 17" --
dictionary purchased for $5 from a garage sale.
It sat on my living room floor and I'd flip to random pages
fascinated by whatever entries were found. 

That's why I had to have (and did you spot it in the bookshelf above?) ...
 Dani and Gigi and WMM already know it's not a book.
Unlike the nearly useless Travel Magazine Clutch,
the Wordsmith Dictionary Clutch is a real working clutch.
It's a decent size, measuring approx. 9.2" x 6.4" x 1.8". Instead of tyvek or laminated fabric,
it is well constructed with rich looking thick leather.
The details are astonishingly realistic.
(You can click on the photos for a closer look.)
Look at the beautiful book spine
and foil stamped leather.
You can just about imagine
turning the book cover.
Even the metal frame looks like the
gold leaf gilded edges of a fine quality book.
I haven't carried it yet but I like this combination:
The hat and the dictionary clutch remind me of Tabitha's icon.
And the backdrop is a peek of the KS metallic gold faux fur jacket
that is my consolation for not finding the KS faux fur pullover.
I know. Metallic gold faux fur is a scary thought.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Sequin Trails

year ago today, I inadvertently started my blog.
I had reserved a blog name, thinking it and the premise were kinda cute
and that maybe someday I'd have time to keep up a blog.
But while playing with a mock post to check the degree of difficulty,
I clicked the Publish button and well ... the blog was on.
In that honor and keeping with the theme,
I'm completely sequined in the zigzag sequin dress.
With the dress hitting this length on the legs of many who are taller,
I was hoping it would be knee length on me but alas, it is not.
Husby even gave encouragement for keeping it,
but I said I am no spring chicken, I'm not dressing like I'm in my 20s.
I may wear sequins I may wear crazy pants
I may wear goofy graphics on a tee
but I'm not doing a mini anymore.
(And don't you love the bruise on my knee where I banged into the corner of my desk?)
Besides, it's another for wardrobe fantasies and
I'm trying to grow up about this, with another year behind me. 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Credit Where Credit's Due

Polka dots gone wild.
Faux fur trim gone wild.
(Umm ... don't think I want a big strip of furriness to add to my hipline.)
Metallic trend gone wild.
(I've met my match in crazy pants; I'm sure others can rock these but it won't be me.)
I try not to and I know it's not nice.
But I did here and here.
And I want to say please JC, watch how you place the pattern:
So to be fair, I think KS can miss too (see first 3 pics above).
And I'll jump in here with this:
All I can think of is: psychedelic shack, that's where it's at.
Psychedelic shack. That's where it's at.