Category Archives: Accessories

Did I Really Just Do That? Oh, Help…

I’ve been looking for a fun new exercise regime. Actually, I have been pretending to be looking, which means for about two years I thought about looking. Finally – yay, me! – I actually bothered to type “fun exercise class” and my city into Google and found an article about a couple of unusual local classes, like one that has a bunch of cowboy gates and all the exercises are somehow done on the gates, like maybe how cowboys climb over rodeo fences to hop onto those cows – wait, bulls? – that jump around and try to throw them off. (I mean, I guess that’s what it like. I don’t actually know. The article wasn’t too clear on that.)
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Two Tips for Becoming a Fall Fashionista

I’m feeling sort of fashion-y today because of the change in seasons and the resulting opportunity to wear different outfits, so I’m going back to the roots of this blog for a bit of non-professional fashion advice.
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2 Life-changing Tips: Rule the Makeup and Buy the Shoes

Listen closely: don’t let your makeup tell you what to do, or be all intimidating and, like, “You better use me the way I’m meant to be used,” and mocking you because you may never be a movie star. If your makeup talks down to you, you need to show it who’s boss. Say you spend $30 for some facial packed powder with just a touch of shimmer, and the shiny box demands that you treat it regally, and the instructions tell you to dust it gently across your cheekbones — guess what? You can simply use that as a guideline. Go ahead: put it on your eyelids as a softly glowing eyeshadow. Or brush it across your chest for an evening out, to show off your cleavage. Wearing an off-the shoulder shirt? Try it on your shoulders. Hell, dust it on the tops of your feet to draw attention to the awesome color of your manicured toes if you want. There are no rules. 
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Technology Tears plus Thoughts on Short Bodies

I have been asked to include better pictures when I post items about style, but have been challenged by the fact that I have no initiative when it comes to technology. But now I am happy to announce that my photos should be improving. Here’s why:
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Why I Hate Umbrellas but Love Nordstrom Rack

We don’t seem to use umbrellas in Northern Colorado. It doesn’t rain much, and it usually stops early and dries quickly. Also, everyone in Colorado, including middleaged women, is obsessed with the outdoors; I guess it’s not “cool” to carry an umbrella. Even MAWs put on our mountain climbing jacket with the oversized hood and head out. And we do NOT hunch our shoulders or duck our heads. We walk proudly through the rain, even if inside, we’re cursing the weather.

Last Thursday, though, Nordstrom Rack opened in our town, and I took a stand against being umbrella-less. I took extra care with my hair and makeup because it depresses me to be in a dressing room and see how pasty I look in that light, and how flat my hair gets from pulling items over my head. 

We get over 300 sunny days a year here; Thursday, of course, was pouring rain. (I tried to think of a metaphor like pouring cats and dogs only better, but nothing’s coming. Suffice it to say it was pouring like a motherfucker.) I searched the house for an umbrella, because I didn’t go to all that effort just to have the rain ruin my hair. I  found an oversized one in the garage (which I now realize is a GOLF UMBRELLA, the source of the problem) and was thrilled with it. At first.

So: I get to the car and unlock it, and realize the umbrella is longer than my arm and wider than the opening of the car door. I try to sink backward into the driver’s seat while simultaneously closing the umbrella like graceful women do in the movies, but, like a giant grabby octopus, the umbrella snags itself between the car door and the car itself, making it impossible to close either the umbrella or the door. I turn the umbrella sideways; rain pours onto my boots. I lean out to click the little clicky thing. An additional bucketful of water pours onto my shoulder; more rain drips into my sleeves and collar. I get the damn umbrella closed; now I am holding it straight out of the car, at arm’s length, as though I am about to joust. I wonder what to do next (but am secure in the knowledge that, if a dark knight on a horse appears with a lance, I am well prepared): I can pull the umbrella into the car, across my lap, and onto the passenger seat, but that will shower water everywhere. Also, I suspect the umbrella will not be satisfied with the passenger seat: it will want to reach across the console and share my seat because it hates me. Maybe I should have initially crawled into the BACK seat, left the umbrella to drip on the kids’ seats, and climbed over the console to the front.

Finally I jump out of the car, open the back door, shove the enemy onto the floorboards, and fling myself into the front again. I’m sure you’re wondering how my hair survived: surprisingly, it was fine. Unfortunately, I was sweating furiously from exertion so I can’t say the same about my makeup.

Nordstrom Rack held crowds of women and squeezing through the aisles was a challenge, but we were all in a good mood and feeling festive, as though a throng of friends had come home for the holidays and we were all enjoying our little shopping spree while waiting for the rum punch and figgy pudding (which never came, might I add).

Despite the lack of refreshments, the trip was a success: I bought a pair of ballet flats , a blouse, a “fashion leather” jacket (which I think means “it’s not real leather but we think it still looks good”), a belt (reversible, brown on one side and gold on the other), and a lightweight, drapy sweater.
  
 

Free People sweater, Jessica Simpson ballet flats, Michael Kors belt


Couple of tips for shopping at the Rack:

1. Get a cart. It’s best if you bring a ton of different sizes into the dressing room because there aren’t many attentive sales folks to find your sizes. Without a cart you will be hauling too many clothes around, and the arms of the shirts will drag along the floor, and you’ll trip on them, potentially ruining a great outfit.

2. Tell the person who hands you your number at the dressing room to NOT GIVE AWAY YOUR CART. I lost mine and there were no more to be had. When I tried on shoes, I had too much to carry and it was very awkward (though I still managed, bless my heart).

3. If, like me, you balk at buying $40 or $60 or $80 bras at Vicky’s Secret or even Macy’s, definitely check out the Rack. I got a perfect DKNY T-shirt bra for $16. It’s very supportive (it tells me all the time how nice I look).

PS: Just remembered I also got a black Calvin Klein blazer. Everything together was only $250 (shoes, sweater, blazer, jacket, belt, shirt). Impressive, Jen. Very impressive.

Scary Mean Girls  Can Become Really Awesome Women

Raise your hand if you remember how awful girls could be in junior high and high school. Yep, I thought so. Remember agonizing over whether you said something stupid to the popular group at lunchtime? Or wearing something to school that looked totally awesome at home in front of your own mirror, but you realize the minute you walk in the door that it is somehow all wrong and you have to wear it all day feeling ashamed and awkward in front of the girls who obviously had it all together? Or when a group of girls behind you in the hallway burst into giggles and you were convinced they were laughing at you? (If you don’t remember, just watch Mean Girls.)

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Why Must My Husband Mock Me? Can’t MAWs Wear Pink Shoes?

So this guy came to measure my windows this morning and when I opened the door for him, he had a box in his hands. “Found this on the steps,” he said. I’m sorry to say that I may have clapped my hands and/or said, “Yay!” and straightaway began opening the box, before realizing that I probably should invite the guy in and show him my windows, seeing as that’s why he was there and all. But as soon as he was engaged with his electronic measuring gadget-thing, I tore into it and lifted out…

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Do Your Clothes Make You Happy? Also Jewelry, Free People and Successful Marketing

Spent a whirlwind three days in Phoenix with family that included two emotional breakdowns (Lizzie, me), three shopping trips (Mom, my brother, my sister in law, my kids, and me, all in various combinations), hundreds of birds, baby quail, and jackalopes (aka Jack-o-lanterns, aka jack rabbits) and several spilled beers (mark, me).

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Orange Necklace In Action (also, People Who Eat Like a Bird…)

I tried out the orange necklace last week and I love it. In fact, I got several compliments and I felt good wearing it. It perked me up, being that it’s bright orange and sort of funky. Plus I found that I had an orange belt that exactly matched it… TOTES exciting, right? (I’ve gone from using the word “totes” ironically, as In, “I’m pretending that I think I’m cool and youthful but Continue reading

How Cheap Is Too Cheap? Also, Thoughts on Self Image

I received such an inspiring comment from a woman yesterday who wrote about losing weight and how she gets extra movement going on by dancing in line at Walmart. She added that one of the wonderful things about aging is that you get to stop worrying about what other people think of you.

I’m definitely not as worried about what people think as I used to be. I’ve been known to do squats or toe raises while waiting in line when I’m bored, and I’m constantly singing in public without really realizing I’m doing it (and I don’t get embarrassed when the person passing me on the street comments about it). But I still have a hard time with worrying about what other people think about my weight. I know, it’s the whole culture thing, and magazines and models and movie stars being a size negative two, and obsession over “thigh gap.” But I would think I would be beyond that by age 46! As I continue this fashion journey, I have a difficult time being as excited about it as I was last year before I gained a bunch of weight. (Note to self: work on the whole self image thing.)

Still, reading a comment from someone who called me “an inspiration” was truly inspiring to me, in turn (thank you, anonymous commenter!). So I will continue the journey.

So back to style: I’ve been thinking about costume jewelry and wondering, “how cheap is too cheap?” I bought a funky necklace at Kohl’s recently (wait, actually my mom bought it for me – thanks mom!), and my son gave me another one for Mother’s Day (thanks, mike!). They were $15 bucks each, and they sort of look it. So, do I look stylish or tacky? I don’t want to be some schoolmarm type who wears cheap, chunky beads and glasses on a chain. (Of course, that’s what I remember from being in school 30 years ago. Today, all my kids’ teachers are very fashionable.)

But back to my point: stylish or tacky? Check it out.

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(Why why why are the two pictures of the necklaces upside down?! They weren’t when I took them. My kids could fix that for me, but God knows I can’t.)

What do you think? By the way, the picture of me wearing the necklace was taken just after my workout at the gym. Ignore the running bra…

Here’s one more pic of a “cheap” necklace.

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Thoughts?