Hi to you. It was my birthday a couple of weeks ago. I was contemplating what to say, and found myself vacillating in two directions. Instead of choosing one, I’ll share them both… Would love your thoughts too, if this topic resonates…. Okay so first, I’m officially in the second half of a century! Is it just me, or is there something about turning the-big-five-oh that plays with your head? Birthdays, especially “big” ones (btw – why do people call it that? aren’t they all “big”? you made it another effing year! with all the things going on in the world, the layers of complexity that form as kids grow, careers develop, financial situations fluctuate – isn’t every birthday “big”? not just the ones that are divisible by five?) I digress… The thing is about birthdays – for me anyway – they are markers of time and opportunities to look at what footprint we are leaving in the sand. Often, we (me) can be hard on ourselves because we’re measuring against an ideal, or self-set expectations. While I don’t think it’s possible or necessarily a good thing to not be reflective, my newly aged wiser self 🙂 has come to the conclusion that we (me) need to tread lightly and be gentle here…We are works in progress, ever evolving. Each new day really is a birthday and an opportunity to celebrate, change course, take a chance, play it safe, start something, finish something, love more. This was the first birthday I spent without my kids and I’m also officially single, so this year had the potential to be a tough one. Instead, it turned out to be the best birthday I’ve had in a long, long time.
So, my second thought about birthdays and turning 50, has to do with age labels, barriers and stereotyping. When I was in my 20’s and 30’s I thought of 50+ as elderly. The beginning of the slow fade. Now that I have arrived there myself and feel better and am in better shape than I was in my 30’s, I realize that this is simply a mindset – and one that needs to be shattered! Women are not only not fading, but thriving in new careers, hobbies, passions and at the same time looking and feeling absolutely fantastic. So, I’ve made a paradigm shift this year and am embracing my age and the next chapter. You with me? #FiftyIsTheNewThirty.
My latest purchases from here…Trying out the pattern mixing trend.
It’s sweater season – yay! The weather has changed – that wonderful transition from hot and languid to cool and crisp. While it doesn’t get really cold here in Northern California, it gets cold enough to bundle up. I like layering especially on those days where the temps can range 20+ degrees throughout the day. This season, it seems that there are tons of great sweater styles to choose from, and new ideas to pair them with – from chunky with skinny jeans to boxy with pencil skirts, to adornments like ruffles and flared sleeves – there is some fashion fun to be had in the sweater department this year. Sweaters can be an investment, so I like to buy things that I can wear for many years to come. Here are a few of my favorites:
Hi beautiful I don’t have much to share as it’s been a pretty quiet week. Aaaahhh. Excuse me while I take a moment to fully appreciate what I just said…. It was Luke’s 22nd birthday last weekend, so we had a family dinner in the city. Luke picked where he wanted to go – Fogo de Chao. If you’re not familiar with this chain of restaurants – it’s an all-you-can-eat Brazilian steak house. The waiters dress as pirates or something, maybe conquistadors – I don’t know exactly – wearing pantaloons and vests and poofy sleeved shirts. They come to your table with giant swords with huge slabs of meat on them and carve off pieces for you to add to the other meat you’ve taken from the buffet. They just keep coming to the table with different kinds of meat until you, in a meat induced coma, flip the card by your plate to the ‘red’ side signaling defeat and for he pirates to halt. It was a wonderful and unique evening, and most importantly, Luke loved it!
Have you discovered the slip dress yet? I bought the one above from here at the beginning of the summer and I have worn it constantly. What I love most is it’s chameleon-like ability to be dressed way up or way down very easily. It also works for MANY body types. I prefer the knee length vs shorter personally.. For one, because I think it’s flattering, and second, the top part is sort of revealing and I don’t like doubling down in the showing of skin for my age group (45+).
Here are some great and affordable slip dress options for an end of summer wardrobe spruce up:
Hi to you. Summertime is here. It’s never the same, summer, that is… While the routine of the school year is so predictable, summer is always different. It’s not only the transition, but no two days, two weeks or two summers are alike, so it can sometimes be difficult (for me at least) to get a handle on everything. For example, we’re either completely out of food the day after I do a huge grocery shop, or I’m throwing stuff out because no one happened to be around for a few days and neglected to tell me. My Type A tendencies are being challenged, which is probably a good thing! I’m sure there’s some great lesson in the unpredictability I’m putting my yoga and meditation practices to the test, just breathing through each day and letting it all ‘just be’…. When that doesn’t work, I’ve also got some military style strategies for staying sane that I may share in a subsequent post. 🙂 All that said, this summer is shaping up to be one of the most calm, joyful and all around blissful summers I’ve had in a long, long time. Happy Fourth!
I’m headed up North this week… can’t wait. I have such a case of wanderlust…. See you next time from the road 🙂
Hi. Sigh. This is the last week of high school for Lily. She graduates tomorrow. In a way it’s a bigger deal than when her brother graduated three years ago….It marks a significant change in my mothering life as I’ve known it for the past 22 years. I cried everyday for six months prior to Luke graduating and everyday after that until he left for college. With Lily, I have a different reaction, but not one bit less emotionally charged. Has this happened to you? Different reactions for each child? This time, I’m filled with excitement as I watch her take this leap, the baby that never left my hip, who never stopped crying when she had a babysitter, who still likes to hang out with me…occassionally 🙂 I have exponential admiration, respect and straight up awe for this girl for so many reasons. My little peanut is ready to leave the nest and soar and I will be cheering her on every step of the way. I hope I prepared her enough.
When I’m asked where I purchased a piece of clothing or where I shop, most people are surprised when I say I buy the majority of my clothes online. Sure it’s safer and more fun to try things on in person, go with a friend, etc. But online shopping is not only getting more convenient with accurate sizing guides, and free shipping and returns, but the fun factor has been and continues to be upped with inspiring editorials, amazing packaging and speedy delivery. I have a few go-to’s when I’m in need of something or just want to satisfy that itch. The two on the top of my list currently are both extremely fashion forward, but at opposite ends of the price point range. Here they are with my picks for the season:
Zara– This is my happy place. They have so much fun with fashion, t’s infectious. The inventory is vast and is constantly changing (as I was putting this post together, they kept adding more things, which made me keep changing my picks) and the prices are very reasonable. This is where I shop when I want to try out a trend but don’t want to make a big commitment.
2. Matches Fashion – I’ve been a fan of this British online shop for years, so when they recently started offering free shipping and easy returns, I was a goner. There is one thing, however that makes MatchesFashion standout as the BEST shopping experience ever…. Their packaging. It’s unlike anything I have every seen. Marbled paper covered boxes with a magnetic closure. Inside, each item is meticulously wrapped in layers of tissue paper and sealed with a beautiful sticker. Even the invoice is enclosed in a matching envelope.
Hello sweet reader. For those in the US, I hope this past Memorial Day weekend slash kick-off to summer slash official start to white-jeans-season was wonderful. Mine was super fun and productive. I washed the outdoor furniture and got new pillows. Then I ordered a badminton set and wait for it…. a corn hole game! (why is there not a better name?) It’s potentially my last summer with both kids in the house so instead of getting the inflatable pool and bubble blowing kits of so many summers gone by, I found some more age appropriate summer games that will (hopefully) keep them and their friends hanging out here as much as possible. The highlight of the weekend, however – attending Bottlerock – an outdoor music festival in Napa.:))
Another fun thing I did this past week was to attend the “Summer of Love” exhibit at the de Young Museum in San Francisco. It’s an homage to the historic social phenomenon that happened in the Haight Ashbury neighborhood 50 years ago when approximately 100,000 people (aka hippies) converged in this part of the city and basically camped out for the summer. As someone who is approximately this age, and was raised in an extremely flowerchild-like household, I was super stoked for the exhibit and to take in all the fashion, music, art and groovy vibes, man. Ya dig? Ok, I’ll stop.
As I’ve said here before, if there’s one era that I relate to fashion-wise, it’s the late 60’s, early 70’s. While trends come and go, I stay pretty true to the same look – bohemian prepster. So, as I share photos from the exhibit that caught my eye, I will add a few other images from this time period that inspire me. I hope they do for you as well.
There is an entire room with these posters from the floor to the ceiling. The style of typeface, colors and use of negative space creates a sense of movement. Supposedly, you can only read them if you’re on LSD. The legendary music venue – The Fillmore – gives a poster to all concert goers dating back to it’s first days. The creators of these posters from The Fillmore and other SF venues are these guys:
The “big Five” San Francisco poster artists Lto R Alton Kelly, Victor moscosso, Rick Griffin, Wes Wilson, Stanley Mouse.
I would wear either of the two outfits above today.
I think my Mom had the dress on the right. Or maybe it was the same pattern as the wallpaper in our kitchen… Yes, we did have rust colored paisley wallpaper in our kitchen.
This is George Harrison and Patti Hansen. The shoes,,,,
The detail of the hand stitching on these patchwork jeans is amazing – not extremely intricate but, delicate, whimsical and artistic.
This unbelievable work of art is a crocheted wedding dress.
This photo from a 1960’s Vogue would also make an incredible wedding dress,
For information about the Summer of Love exhibit click here.
Well howdy dreamers. What can I tell you? For one thing, I just ate way too much chocolate — even for me. It’s my one actuallyI have a huge problem and probably need an anon but admitting it is the first step, right? guilty pleasure so its all good. Other than that juicy tidbit, life has been in a blissful holding pattern for the past few weeks. Oh – here’s something – I stepped back into doing residential interior design for a project I couldn’t refuse… It’s in Cabo. On the beach. I know – check myself. I got to fly down to Mexico and stay at the property for a night. I dressed the part. I conjured a female Pablo Escobar-ish look which was way out of place among the college Spring Breakers and honeymooner couples on the plane. It also could have been that I was the only one traveling solo to Mexico. Or the tube of floorplans sticking out of my purse.
For most of my life I have had style icons. Women who I think epitomize an effortless, classic and timeless style while staying current and slightly edgy. I have several – see them here, but my numero uno, all-time favorite is Ali MacGraw.
She wore a beanie to the Academy Awards – no words.
Photo by REX USA (94679c) ALI MacGRAW – 1971
My favorite of her former beaus is Steve McQueen, so I started pinning photos of him too. What a couple.
So, I was beyond excited to receive the book “McQueen’s Motorcycles – Racing and Riding with the King of Cool” by Matt Stone from the publisher. Cool personified. If you have a motorcycle lover in your life, this book would make an excellent gift.
Hi, and welcome! I’m so glad you landed here and I hope you find this to be a place you visit often.
I started this blog in 2008 as a way to chronicle the remodeling of our nondescript Northern California house into our dream home. While that did happen, so did a lot of other things - life and all the messy, glorious, complicated, wonderful things that go with it. As such, in early 2017 I decided to change the focus from the house itself to the life that happens inside.
My wish is that this blog provides beautiful inspiration, creative ideas, connections to other like-minded folks, as well as stylish products for your home, to wear and to give.