Sunday Style, Still Layering

Sunday Style, Still Layering

Composing this post is challenging; there is a heat-seeking Dachsund on my lap.

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Typing is not too difficult, but there is an occasional groaning protest if my hands move too much. And the groans do not emanate from me.

Nonetheless, I am determined to share yesterday’s church outfit with you, because I was rather pleased with how it turned out. I’ve seen other bloggers layer a sweater over a dress, but had never tried it myself. This is a wonderful way to get more use out of those short-season dresses!

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Outfit details:

Xhileration dress, worn as a skirt – Target; Tahari sweater – thrifted;

fleece-lined leggings – local shop that has since moved away;

St Johns Bay boots – JC Penney.

This dress is one I tend to wear only in the spring or early summer, because of its thin jersey nature and the deep scoop back. It’s not comfortable to wear in hot weather, because it requires lump-hiding underthings, which of course, enhances the heat. Not a good thing in July. It is, however, a perfect dress to wear beneath a bulky sweater! No lump hiders required, either. The fleece lined tights and the thick sweater did that job nicely.

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My love for vintage pins continues to grow. This sparkling green-eyed kitty was purchased at a teensy-tinsey shop downtown, Heritage Collections. The proprietor recently moved a couple doors down to a more spacious building and I am anxious to meander through her expanded inventory. I’m sure she is happy to have room for more than two customers at one time in her store! Yes, that is just how tiny her previous location was. I think it was about the size of my laundry room. But she sure did pack a lot of goodies into the cramped quarters!

Socks, Teacups, a Hat and Some Shoes

Well, I don’t have any outfits to share this week. Some Postman and I went out on Valentine’s Day, but since much of our “date” was comprised of shopping and running errands, I didn’t dress up. I did wear some Valentine-themed socks, of course, and managed to get pictures of those posted on the blog’s Facebook page.

There wasn’t enough time Sunday morning to take outfit photos before we left for church, but you aren’t missing much. It looked fine on the hanger, but not so great on me. The biggest problem was the fit of the pants. The waist on that pair of khakis hits “just below the natural waist” – which on me is at a very awkward point. The pants fit well, so I won’t get rid of them; I just can’t tuck a shirt in them.

Perhaps later this week I will wear something other than lounge pants and a flannel shirt so I can make an outfit post. I really ought to…I’m beginning to feel like a bum.

So, since my clothing choices lately have been sadly pathetic, how about if I show you my latest thrifting finds instead? The past few trips to Goodwill and JC Penney’s have netted some lovely items.

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No, I do not need more mugs, but I could not pass up these delicate little cups for 25¢ each. They look particularly lovely stacked up and are just right for having tea with a couple of friends. These cups are made by Mikasa, and the ones I saw on eBay have solid black saucers with them, which provides a wonderful contrast. Now I will be hunting for black saucers…

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Betsy the Dressform is sporting the reversible hat  I found instead of the plaid scarf for which I was searching at Goodwill. I believe I’ll wear it with the quilted side out, as pictured, most of the time.

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After clearance prices and a $10 coupon, these two shirts from JC Penney’s cost a total of $3.23! Can’t beat that with a stick! Both are 100% cotton, which is a very good thing for me these days.

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Normally I don’t purchase tops like this, but this Old Navy camisole is 100% silk, new with tags, and only $2 at Goodwill. It will be perfect to wear at home with a breezy skirt on a hot summer day, or with a light sweater and jeans this spring.

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In planning my outfit for our niece’s upcoming wedding, I found that I needed a new pair of shoes to do with my dress. I tried to shop my closet for the entire outfit, really! Dress, jewelry, wrap – all from my closet – but nude or silver shoes would look best, and I don’t have any of either. After much searching online, I finally found the perfect pair of silver shoes on Zulily and bought them. A couple days after those little beauties arrived in my mailbox, I found the perfect nude peep toe pumps above at Goodwill for $2.49! I’m still planning to wear the silver shoes to the wedding, but I’m certain the nude heels will get a lot more use on Sunday mornings.

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Here’s Betsy again, wearing the gray stretch denim jacket that I found while waiting for the line to go down at the checkouts at Goodwill. (I figure if there are half a dozen people in line, I might as well continue to look at the racks closest to the checkouts.) This jacket isn’t particularly pretty or even all that flattering, but it sure is comfortable and durable! Just the thing needed for doing chores on a cool day, taking a hike down by the creek, or even while grocery shopping.

Thoughtful Thursday – I Accept!

As I considered what I might write about today, my mind drew a blank. So I followed the example of Dr. Sheldon Cooper and set about doing a mindless task so my brain could work in the background. Two piles of folded laundry later, today’s topic emerged!

I discarded this subject matter several times as I folded socks, because you’ve heard it before. This time, it’s different, though. Instead of accepting out of defeat or frustration, this time I’m accepting out of peace. Let me explain…

I’ve struggled almost my entire life with my weight and size. My body has never been thin or the perfect size. I’ve tried a few diets, but gave those up when my digestive system revolted and the diets made me sick. The numbers on the scale have gone down, but I’ve never been able to maintain the losses after going back to normal eating. I’ve done aerobics, calisthenics, walking, yoga, aqua-cise, even jogging. Regular workouts are something I enjoy very much, but they’ve rarely helped me shed any pounds.

According to those blasted charts, at 5’2″, my ideal healthy weight is 110 lbs – about a size 4.  I’ve never been able to reach that ideal weight, even when I was 18 years old working three jobs, consuming little more than cold mac & cheese and Diet Pepsi.  My scale reads between 150 – 155 lbs, and my clothes are sized 12 or 14. This has not changed in nearly ten years, except for a few months when I was on another diet about five years ago. And then it went right back.

If I had the dead-eye shooting ability of my sister B, I would take one of those charts out to the back fence and pump it full of holes.

Last May, at the request of a friend, I began leading a Bible study class on weight loss, Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst. This is a wonderful study – I highly recommend it – and it’s not just for food struggles; it can be applied to anything that is consuming your life that shouldn’t. Our class has gone through the first study twice and we’re almost finished with the follow-up study (we’ve taken our sweet time getting through ALL the information!). One thing Lysa says early on in the study resonated with me: our goal in this journey isn’t to be skinny – it’s to be at peace. And finally…near the very end…I feel like I’ve found a peace just for me.

I believe that God has been trying to tell me with this study that my problem isn’t that I’m overweight or that my body’s size isn’t good enough. My problem is that I’ve put far too much emphasis on those views. My normal diet is just fine:  I eat healthfully and according to my body’s requirements. My exercise routine is just fine:  when I’m not injured (as I am currently), I work out 3-5 times per week. My doctor is pleased with my “numbers”. I’m in good health. I can be happy and AT PEACE with that!

Thank you, Father God, for giving me this healthy body. I accept that it’s exactly the size and shape You created it to be. I promise to take care of it as best I can and not obsess over “ideals” that are unrealistic.

Ahh…peace!

Image courtesy of blessingsinabundance.net.

Sunday Style: He Likes It!

Sunday Style: He Likes It!

As I prepared Some Postman’s breakfast yesterday morning, he asked “have you worn that before?”. He referred to my striped dress:

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Yes, I told my husband, I have worn this sweater dress once before, but not to church or anywhere with him. (Honestly, I can’t remember where I wore it the first time. Book club? My friend’s Tastefully Simple party? hmmm…)

Some Postman said, “well, I like it on you. It looks really nice!”

Oh my…he so rarely says anything about what I wear. I do believe he’s going to see me wear this dress a LOT! 🙂

As it turns out, *I* like this dress a bunch, too. It is definitely a keeper!

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Outfit details:  Jessica Howard dress – eBay; George blazer – Walmart;

tights – probably Walmart; Clarks shoes – thrifted; pin – hmm…had it forever.

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I wanted to wear a scarf with the dress because of the deeply scooped neckline. Without longer hair to cover my neck, I get cold when they turn on the ceiling fans at church. Amazingly enough, not a single one of my dozens of scarves looked right, and so I settled on the black blazer instead. Looking at the photos, I can see that the blazer is rather big on me. One of these days, I’ll need to replace it, although I don’t wear it often, so there’s no rush.

I’ve learned that it’s important to buy my clothing in the correct size type. You’d think that would always be Petites, considering my lack of height, but it’s not. The best size type for my body varies with the type of clothing:

Dresses – Petites or Juniors

Knit shirts / tees – Regular for most brands; Petites for a few

Button-up shirts – Petites or Juniors

Jackets – Petites

Sweaters – Regular or Petites

Skirts – Petites for most brands

Pants – Petites

Jeans – Petites or short length regular

Capri pants – Petites

Shorts – Regular

Since it’s almost time for a closet culling, having the above list will help me determine what to keep and what to toss. I’d better go write that down…

National Thank A Mailman Day

Today is February 4th, and it’s National Thank A Mailman Day. It is an opportunity to leave a little something special in your mailbox for your letter carrier, thanking them for bringing your mail to your house six days a week – or seven, in some areas.

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Inside the little card are a couple of tea bags.

Being married to a rural mail carrier, I have learned a few things about delivering mail that most people don’t think about….

Occasionally, the truck from the distribution center is late. Sometimes it’s REALLY late. That could be one reason why your mail arrived later than normal. Or maybe your rural carrier had a flat tire; perhaps he had to wait for his wife to bring him a new tire because the spare got shredded, too. Or maybe the transmission in his car suddenly gave up the ghost. Or perhaps his poor little car got high-centered on the ridge of ice in front of your neighbor’s mailbox and no amount of digging freed it. There are a bazillion things that can happen to delay progress. Please be patient – he’s doing his best!

Trash pickup day can be challenging. Sometimes people place their dumpsters directly in front of their mailboxes. It can be gently nosed out of the way if it’s empty, but not when it’s full.

Every now and then, the rural carriers are asked by the Dept. of Wildlife to record the number of a specific animal they see while out on the route.  I think most postal workers have a thing for numbers, so counting critters is right up their alley! Prairie chickens, jack rabbits, pheasants…depends on the time of year, I suppose. I’m not sure that Some Postman has ever been asked to count skunks, however.

When it snows, many times your rural carrier must drive on past your mailbox without making a delivery. Sure, the blade operator has cleared the road, but in the process, he’s left a tall ridge of hard-packed snow along the edge of the road, including the path in front of your mailbox. Not many carriers drive a monster truck, so it’s impossible for them to get close enough to your box unless you shovel that mound away. And no, he can’t just get out of the car and walk to the mailbox. He’s got 500 other houses to which he must deliver the mail. Can you imagine how long it would take him to finish his route if he had to do that for everyone?

Most mailmen (and women) carry mace. The rural carriers also carry dog biscuits. There are several dogs on Some Postman’s route that recognize his car and chase it until he stops to deliver a biscuit into their drooling mouths.

Did you know that a rural carrier’s vehicle is a mobile post office? You can purchase stamps, request a package pickup, set up a temporary hold on your mail, or even weigh your letter to see if it needs extra postage. If your carrier can’t provide you with exactly what you need today, he’ll have it for you tomorrow.

Remember to thank your postman or woman today for their dedication and service. They are part of the “background” that keeps everyday business going!

Weekend Style, 1-31 & 2-1

This weekend, I wore pretty much the same thing both days, and didn’t get any photos taken either day. Because the outfits turned out fairly well, I laid out the looks on the surface of the bed so I could still share them with you.

On Saturday, my daughter and I went to town for a Girls’ Day. We shopped at Goodwill, went to Caribou for coffee and a game of checkers, and looked around the new Marshall’s store. On the way home, we stopped at a little bakery for nourishment. The weather was not nice – a cold rain fell the entire time, with a few snow flurries tossed in occasionally. We didn’t let it hamper our fun, though!

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Outfit details:  Sweater – Modcloth; scarf – handmade, gift; Cecil pants – gift; Fitzwell boots – eBay; earrings – JC Penney.

Despite the frigid temperatures, I was quite warm in this outfit. In fact, I got overheated eventually and wrapped the scarf around my daughter, who hadn’t worn a heavy coat. The cold rain changed over to snow overnight, so for Sunday’s church outfit I decided to wear the same thing, except change out the sweater and scarf so I wouldn’t get so hot.

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Outfit details:  Faded Glory chambray shirt – Walmart; Dachshund scarf – Amazon; Cecil pants – gift;

Fitzwell boots – eBay; earrings – Premier Designs Jewelry party ages ago.

As it turns out, I should have worn the chambray shirt on Saturday and the sweater on Sunday. It was slightly cooler at church than I’d anticipated, but I never got cold. Boo snuggled up next to me on the pew most of the time, sharing his little boy heat with me. It was SO nice to have Boo and his mommy and his daddy in church with us! Sure made this Grammy happy!