Monday, November 24, 2014

What a long weekend!

Let's start with the fun part. Thursday night was book/wine club which was lots of fun with good friends.

Friday was my Hubby's birthday and we went to the Georgia Aquarium and then out to lunch. It was very enjoyable and the little kids on tour of the aquarium just added to the fun with their excitement, awe and most excellent questions.

Then to the work part. Both of us spent at least 2 hours raking leaves and filling barrels for pick up today. We have 15 barrels! In the middle of the raking a friend dropped of a carload of books to donate to the library and we moved them into my car.

Then came the not so fun part. I woke up in the early hours of Sunday to find my little world was spinning and I ached. A whole rainy day of napping and hanging out in PJs with my faithful little dog staying close and Hubby fixing me meals, washing sheets and going grocery shopping so we won't have to brave the stores again until after Thanksgiving.

Much better today although still achy and the dog is very rested and rambunctious!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Happy Dance!

I have been happy for such seemingly small reasons lately. I think that means I am successfully living in the present!

- The glory of the sugar maple in our front yard as seen in the previous photo.

- Learning that I can now pay for massages through our health savings account so I am paying with pre-tax money and the net cost is much less.

- Using some of the money I made from selling items I have let sit in drawers for decades to pay for Imogen Lamport's 7 Steps to Style program which I am doing as a follow up to her Evolve Your Style program.

- Trying the new Italian Deli near us for lunch while Hubby was off work for Veteran's Day and finding it is a very good stand in for a deli we used to go to before we moved here. As a bonus, they are having a free wine tasting on the 22nd and that is on our calendar.

- We went to a friend's birthday party Saturday night and it was so much fun for both of us!

So here is me looking happy today.

Monday, November 10, 2014

It is beautiful in my front yard today! Enjoying the last bit of warm Fall weather.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

I don't spend all of my time playing dress up!

I've almost finished the 31 day Evolve Your Style challenge and although I hear there are 59ish additional challenges listed in the final email I am tending to non wardrobe matters mostly.

Sunday afternoon we took a 3 mile walk on the Atlanta Beltline section near us and enjoyed the public art displays and seeing new businesses and residences that are starting to populate this former rail line that is now a pave walking/biking trail. They have planted lots of trees and meadow areas and one of my favorite art installations was a herd of metal goats in a meadow grazing away except for one that was staring at the walkway. Lots of other neat ones that are harder to describe.

It may still be pretty warm here in Atlanta but the leaves are falling anyway! Yesterday I raked enough of them to fill 9 trash cans and a 10th was filled with branches. At least it is good exercise.

I have been banging my head (figuratively) against the computer as I try to pay for something and can't get the site to delete my cancelled credit card or choose the new one for payment. I'll have to get on the phone at a moment when I have the patience to be on hold forever.

Speaking of exercise, I went to the gym this morning and then walked the dog. Vacuuming is on the agenda too. Oh what an exciting life I lead!

There is a coffee date with a friend scheduled for Wednesday afternoon and we are going to a party on Saturday night so life is not all exercise, chores and playing dress up.

What are you up to this week?

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Playing With Clothes Part 4: I've learned a lot that is helpful

At this point I am at day 26 out of the 31 days of challenge for Evolve Your Style. Well, that is if you don't count the three I have skipped and need to come back to. They involve makeup - which I don't own - and a dress. The only dress I own at the moment is my Mother of the Groom dress which I am going to try to style for a cocktail party/fancy event assuming it still fits.

However, this is turning out to be the best money I ever spent on my appearance. As Mette says in her summary post at her interesting blog, Evolve Your Style - my reflections and a review, the closed Facebook group for this challenge is a friendly, kind and helpful one where you get great suggestions and develop a sense of community with women from around the world. In an odd coincidence, someone I actually know IRL here in Atlanta just joined too which was a nice surprise.

So I'm not ready to do a full summary but here are my favorite outfits from last week and some key learning so far.

Wear flowers day - dressed to head to a funeral unfortunately

Wear a jacket with jeans - my only jacket and ever present jeans on the way out to dinner

One of the surprising things I have learned that is very helpful is the idea of contrast level. I think that when people age and say they feel they are fading away it is because of this issue of changing contrast level. If I wear the same color combinations then my clothes will take center stage and make me fade away or look outdated. I have to laugh when I realize my Mom never felt that way about her appearance but she was a blonde who still had just a few white hairs when she was 93. So I didn't learn this at home, but you can learn more about contrast levels on Imogen Lampore's blog (Getting your value contrast levels right).
I used to have dark brown hair which meant I had a higher contrast level than I do now. So I could wear a bright red jacket with a black and white stripe dress, etc. and it looked fine. This group helped me realize that the overall affect of my mixed white and brown hair is more of a dark blonde look which means my contrast level is low medium and I need to wear outfits that have less contrast. Bright colors are still fine they just are mixed differently and are more in the secondary color range. For example the jacket above is a yellow green not a primary green.
Evidence of my current low medium contrast level
So I tried "wear flowers" another day when I wasn't constrained by the etiquette of funeral attire and mixed grays with black jeans for another low medium contrast look. That is a charcoal gray sweater - I'm having trouble with color accuracy in my selfies.

Then there was style a skirt day and I took a chance on making a summer cotton skirt work for fall weather with this low medium contrast look. With tights it could work out but I'll probably keep it for warmer weather.
I haven't spent much money on this style challenge as my experimental purchases have mostly been from thrift shops. Yesterday I did buy a couple of sweaters that I am very happy with in terms of color and style. Shopping choices were easier with the knowledge I have gained as I passed by many items that appealed to me visually but wouldn't work with my contrast level.
Contrast level helps me understand in part why I didn't like the first outfit below although the color combination works and is something I have happily worn in the past. The second one is lower contrast in my opinion and I really felt good in it. I hope I have explained this correctly LOL.


Sunday, October 26, 2014

Playing with clothes Part 3 - Variations on red week

It seemed to be variations on red week for me. I am finding it harder to put together new outfits that I like but these fit that criteria. The thrift shop has been my friend as I experiment with new items.
Magenta shirt and black - my neighbor asked if I had been to a meeting LOL.

Resurrecting an old print top by adding a pop of color t-shirt underneath for a layered look.
Newly thrifted top and necklace with a favorite bright red sweater.
Last, but not least, modeling my new winter hat.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Been busy enjoying this lovely weather

It is my favorite time of year in Atlanta. Enjoying being outside, walking, camellias in bloom, lots of sunshine and leaves starting to turn.