Outfit of the Day?

I’ve been asked quite a few times as to why I don’t routinely post any OOTD’s (Outfit of the day).  The main reason is, it’s unnecessary.  I want to avoid alienating any woman or make someone feel like they aren’t en vogue because they chose to go in a different direction than I did on that particular day.   Fashion is art and incredibly subjective.  It changes constantly and colors flatter some and wash out others.  Fashion should empower you no matter  what.  If you put on that dress and can walk into a room full of strangers and feel like a Goddess, work the shit out of it!  Own it.  Make it yours, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

My only suggestion is there is a time and place for everything.  The good Lord doesn’t need to see your best club wear, and neither does your employer or Gram-Gram.  Have some fun, take a few chances and remember to be yourself.  That’s the best fashion advice anyone can give you.

 

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Be a Mentor?

When we hear this word, it usually sparks the idea of volunteering to help young kids who need it.  Whether it is emotional, spiritual, physical, or torturing, there are a lot of kids and adults out there who are struggling.  They find it hard to stop the feeling of  drowning in life’s issues.  Being a mentor can be a great benefit to just about anyone – age is not a determining factor.  I know a lot of adults who could benefit from having a mentor in their life.  Sometimes you lean on a parent or other family member,  but sometimes it is good to have a more objective person who will tell you the things you need to hear that you may not be ready to face.

There are a number of great organizations that are already in place such as the Boys and Girls Club of America   and Big Brothers Big Sisters – These are just two of many places that are a great starting point if you are interested in giving back to the community.  When you visit their sites you can explore the other connections they have.  Also, do not forget about your local seniors.  A lot of nursing homes welcome volunteers to read, spend time with them or initiate crafts.  There is a lot to learn from the elderly community, and a lot of them barely get visits from their own family.  You could be the reason they feel vibrant again.

What about those 20-somethings you know who are trying to start their adult life?  How about those 30-somethings who may have to start over?  The 40-somethings who have put off life and are rushing to begin again?  The 50-somethings who are finding love again in various new areas of their life?  The 60-somethings who are fighting the big R word (retirement)?  The 70-somethings who have finally found peace?  And the 80-somethings who have realized that living is the best part of life that gets lost over the years?  There are so many facets of life that we often struggle with and feel alone in even among the closest of friends.  It can be hard to ask for help but it can be the most rewarding, even life changing in some instances.

I invite you to consider something.  When we put our own swords down, it is then we realize the weight we were carrying.  When you are busy helping others through their struggles, you realize how to prioritize your own things.  This is not to say we should ignore ourselves,  but sometimes we often get too buried in our own crises that we don’t see how to crawl our way out.  It causes a shield of ignorance.  I feel that helping and inspiring others to make the most of what life has to offer gives me purpose.  I feel that the more we band together, the better we all will be in the long run.

If you know someone who need something, reach out to them.  It could be someone to vent to, someone in need of career advice or what kind of flowers are right for their wedding.  Don’t place limits on things that don’t require one.

Help others.  Encourage others.  Love others.

Winter Cute?

The hardest part about winter is looking cute.  The only benefit is the low humidity and cold air, so your hair style will last longer.  After that?  It’s not so grand.  We are constantly wrapped up in layers, gross snow boots, and hats.  I have found that when it comes to sweaters, whether it is a turtleneck or other various sweater styles, the best way to dress up the outfit is big, bold statement jewelry – especially bold necklaces!

My favorite place to buy jewelry is Burlington Coat Factory.  They have a very wide selection and low prices so you won’t feel guilty splurging.  If something breaks, gets lost or stolen it’s no big deal.  I have found some cute stuff at other stores but it’s so hit or miss that they aren’t worth mentioning.  I usually try to avoid those house party companies.  You know exactly what I’m talking about.  The items that cost an arm and a leg when the quality is no where to be found.  If you are going to spend a lot of money for jewelry, be sure that the price is on par with the quality, clarity and design.  I see a lot of women who claim their stuff is top notch but I can tell it’s just expensive costume jewelry.

These are some of the items I own that I break out from time to time.  They are big, bold and always start a conversation.

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Great pearl necklace for all seasons.  Found at Burlington Coat Factory.

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Turquoise necklace that can either be casual or dressy.  I love wearing it more in the Spring and Summer than other times in the year.  Also found at Burlington Coat Factory.

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It’s not always you can find green jewelry.  It’s original and can work for a  dressy outfit or something more casual.   Another BCF find.

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I love the tiger faces! I found this at Ashley Stewart but I don’t recommend their jewelry at all.  It breaks easily and is incredibly cheap.  I only bought this because I used it in part of a Halloween costume I created.  I know if I wore it all the time it would have fallen apart by now.

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This necklace can be twisted and knotted in different ways to create something unique each time.  I got this from Torrid.  I don’t usually buy their stuff but this caught my eye.

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I always suggest getting a long strand of pearls.  They can be worn a variety of ways, and it is such a classic piece. This was another BCF find.

How are you staying cute this winter?  What are you rocking this winter?

How Do You Make it Work?

With all of our modern distractions, how is it possible to sustain a long term relationship?  This goes for any couple, married or otherwise.

I was in a supermarket recently and saw a young couple doing their shopping together.  They had a grocery cart filled with mutual home item needs, yet the woman seem more interested in the experience than the guy.  While I was grabbing the few items I needed, I noticed  he was quick to start walking away from her, not really giving her an explanation as to why he was walking away.  It was a bit awkward to be honest.  She quickly regained some dignity by telling him she was going to be in another department.  I would venture to say she was a bit hurt by the whole exchange, judging by her body language and tone in her voice.  It made me think about what I usually ask my coupled up friends – how do they make things work in their relationship?  Even in instances as small as grocery shopping together.   I am a firm believer in comparing and contrasting experiences with other people because it is one way to learn more about yourself and your situation.  I’m not saying that you should always compare yourself and your relationships to others because that isn’t healthy.  But hey, if couple X makes special time for adventure instead of the usual go-to Netflix weekends – why not make a consideration?

What does it mean to make time for adventure?  Adventure can be as grand as multiple vacations through out the year or as simple as date nights, dance lessons, wine tasting – whatever makes sense for the two of you.  Of course life and its complications can add reasons to make you say things like, “well, not this month” or “not this year” – that’s another unrealistic roadblock.  If it’s finances that are holding you back, look into where you are spending your money.  Plan a budget at the start of each year, quarter, month and week  – if you aren’t that anal, creating a budget each month helps in planning some fun.  You will be surprised at how much you can save when you maintain an accurate budget.   There are a lot of great local things to try in most areas, especially if you live close to a metropolitan area.  There are various sites that offer ideas and coupons; just be sure to check reviews and leave reviews.    If it’s children that hold you back, work with other families that you trust to swap out babysitting duties.  It is a great low cost (if not free) idea that works for short term.  Try to not take advantage of others’ time.  It’s not right and not fair.

What if your adventure is just making time for each other?  That genuine friendship between two people, the talking, sharing and emotionally giving time?  As much as I love to be out on the town, listening to live music and dancing, I do enjoy the more quiet types of adventure.  Walking along the beach together, quiet dinners for two in dimly lit restaurants – you know, all the super romantic stuff.  I love the intimacy and getting to know more about your partner.  There are things about them that don’t change but there are a lot of things that do change as time goes on and they go through different experiences,  and it is important to keep the dialogue open, constructive and positive.  You fell in love with him or her for a reason and in 60 years, you will want to be able to readily list those reasons as to why you are still together.  Plus it is always good to share those reasons with each other.

Whether you have been together, married, living together – whatever – for 5 minutes or 5 years find out your dynamic and feed it.  Don’t let the, “oh, we can do it next month” create gaps.  Life is too short waiting for tomorrow, next month or next year.  Appreciate the time you have together now, and make the most of every moment.  Technology has caused us to not appreciate spoken word, written language, and palpable emotions in others.  We are forever waiting for that next second impulse or tone from our handheld devices to alert us of how we should feel for that brief moment.  Take the time to turn things off, set the mood and get back to what’s important:  finding what makes things work.

What are some ways you build your relationship that actually works?  What are things that you have tried that ultimately failed?

What’s Your Love Song?

It is that time of year again.  You know, worrying about what to do for Valentine’s Day.  Should we go out?  Should we go away?  Will he finally propose?  Instead of the traditional ways to celebrate, why not change things and create a new tradition for you and your partner, or if you are single, for yourself?  There are so many ways to celebrate that don’t have to include something that is overly sexual.

Married / Long term relationship:  You had better put some serious effort into whatever you are doing.  Whether it is a nice dinner out on the town, or a special candle lit dinner for just the two of you, it needs to be something personal and with thought behind it.  You should know your partner well enough to know what they will find memorable and special.  Don’t forget the flowers either and a gift.  I suggest you two hire a babysitter (if you have kids) and cook together.  If you both aren’t the cooking type, enroll in a class together.  Plan to start something that will help you two grow together and just have fun.

Somewhat serious dating:  This is when you have been with the person under a year and have only recently decided to become exclusive.  This doesn’t require that much of a commitment on Valentine’s Day but fresh flowers and a simple gift works best.  This does not require the big ta-do, even though a lot of you expect it.  It’s not fair to expect all of that from someone you have a fresh commitment with.  Valentine’s Day is not a competition.

Casual daters / Single people:  If you and your current other half haven’t made plans yet for the big day, don’t sweat it.  In fact, I’d suggest you and your single friends go out to a singles party that night or plan to have your own singles mixer.  This is a great way to meet other singles or just make a new friend.  It doesn’t have to be overly done and can simply be a pizza, beer and Netflix night.  Break out your baking tools and create Valentine’s Day cookies or a cake together.  It can turn very intimate if need be.

Family Valentine’s Day Party:  It is a growing trend for kids to be part of the celebration.   I know some schools still have parties dedicated to handing out Valentine’s Day cards, candy, cookies and other sweet treats.  Don’t stress that all the food and desserts have to be red or pink in color – the fact that you are spending quality time together as a family means more and will have a lasting impression.

Get creative this year, and don’t break the bank – unless you were planning on buying that $10k ring.  There are plenty of ways to make this romantic holiday special instead of handing out a coupon book for free hugs.  It is important to remember to give and share – love is more than expectations, pressure and jewelry.

 

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What are you planning to do this year?  Like/Comment/Share

Vegas Vacation

A few things I learned about my recent trip to Vegas:

  • I enjoy getting older.
  • I don’t envy young women in their early 20s. I encouraged their ignorance. You are only young once.
  • Just because he or she is in the service industry doesn’t mean they are beneath you. Smile, communicate, crack jokes – be human – they are too.
  • Life is too short – be thankful, be grateful, and tell them you love them.  You know it’s from the right place and they may need to hear it more than you need to hear it in return.
  • I need a damn tan.
  • Wear white whenever the hell you want.
  • I love heels but it’s not a reality when walking around town. You can easily walk a mile from your hotel room to the restaurant.
  • The desert really is the most beautiful part of the country. I wish I took more pictures on the flight home.  Flying over the southwest was incredible during the daytime.
  • Nothing makes a day brighter quite like chocolate covered strawberries and quality chardonnay.