Thursday, July 30, 2015

A welcome return

Just saw that a blogger I've followed for a long time is back to blogging again, after a very long hiatus.  Go say "Hi" to Zoom at -- she'll get a kick out of that.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Challenge Week 5

At last, it's Friday.  Are we ready to see this past week's outfits?  Let's do this.
ETA: Actually, it's Saturday.  I want you to know that due to craziness from Picasa and just being too d**mned tired to fool with it, I'm posting late again.  And I've been working on this stuff for about 3 hours now.  'Nuff said.
You are getting the skinny straight from the spreadsheet (see why it's taken so long?), with added pictures to illustrate.  On Monday --
Trousers:  Westbound Petites black stretch poly
Top:  Jones New York Signature Woman poly multi print
Shoes:  Black Alfani wedge sandals
Purse:  Caramel tan leather bag (not pictured -- I'd had another outfit in mind when I changed purses, and it being Monday, a wardrobe malfunction caused a change of plans.)
Bling:  Corded necklace with goldtone and amber color beads, with a huge honkin' pendant -- in fact, too huge to wear all day!  So it is also not pictured.

Tuseday's trousers are Ruby Rd Woman tan cotton with a half-elastic waist
The blouse is daniel rainn (oh he's too cute to capitalize his name...) sheer poly spotted cat print with a black tee beneath.
Shoes:  Trendsetter dark tan studded cork wedge sandals -- which are adorable, but drive me batty because my right pinkie toe keeps slipping thru the side of the sandal.
Purse:  a black handbag I got at WalMart a couple of weeks ago, with 3 large zip compartments plus 2 small side pockets and a back pocket.  Can you believe I didn't have a black purse?!?!?
Bling is a necklace of multiple sized pieces of chain, in black/silver/gold mix -- it had a label calling it "Modern Metals"; maybe I'm on the way to becoming a maister.....

Wednesday is a bit more colorful.  Trousers are Investments II black poly pullons, with cuffs I added.
The blouse is Jones New York Sport Woman, with a tuck pleated bib, in linen.
Shoes: Style & Co tan thong-style wedge sandals (I have put some moleskin between my right big toe & second toe); and I carried the black purse again.
Bling: Anthropologie-inspired multi-strands of black chain, with "ivory" beads.

Thursday got a little brighter still:  Trousers are (ancient!) Leslie Fay Haberdashery Woman in bright royal blue.
Top is a broken stripe print in shades of blue, grey and ivory by Notations Woman.  Like the pink linen, it has roll tab sleeves, which Sis says I should always roll up.  Not happening!  They get very "relaxed" long before the end of the day, and just look dreadful.
Shoes are the blue Alfani wedge sandals, purse is a dark navy single compartment handbag.
Bling is the long silvery multi-chain, knotted & with rhinestone rondels strung between the knots.

A-a-a-nd that brings us to TGIF!  Trousers are the White Stag denim jeggings, which I've worn three times since I started this silliness.  The top is a Basic Editions knit, with a tuck pleated bib and sequin-embellished lace, and it's PINK (again).
I carried my aqua "croc" bag, wore the Style & Co thong wedge sandals,  The only bling I wore is a pair of small dangly fish-hook earrings in (actual) malachite and (fake) gold, handmade by DiscoDame Designs.  I've emailed her a request for a matching pendant; I know she's got a lot of these malachite nuggets.
 TomTom makes the best accessory, of course.  But he doesn't alway cooperate; here, he's doing a great passive resistance and going absolutely limp as I tried to pick him up off the chair.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

A day late with The Challenge

We went to the movies last night, and I was just too tired to write afterwards.  So here's Week 4 of the 250 Workday Challenge.
Monday was light colors, my tan stretch Westbound Woman trousers (I put on the cuffs when I hemmed these), a Daniel Rainn southwestern print blouse that was super sheer and needed my apple green tank under it, the black Alfani wedge sandals, the blue Maxx bag, and some turquoise color earrings that Disco made for me:
 Have you seen it from this angle?
Tuesday has me in a little more color: Larry Levine tab waist trousers, light grey; Zac & Rachel Woman roll tab sleeve blouse with tiny pink, white & pale green medallions on an olive green ground; my default light green bag; Trendsetter medium brown cork wedge studded sandals; two-tone coral beads with goldtone bugle beads around my neck, and pearl drop earrings -- another pair made by Disco!
I have to be careful which album I'm pulling from, as one of these shots is an outtake.
Disco is my photographer; she caught me making a face...

Wednesday I went darker & more colorful.  Trousers: Investments II plum polyester (my added cuffs).  Blouse: GO Silk -- yep, it's silk -- color almost pea-soup green, with printed cuffs, color, and back pleat.  There's that same green purse again.  The pumps are Liz & Co (ancient!) in an almost plummy brown suedecloth with reptile trim.  Bling: from TJ Maxx in Austin, a long golden chain with pearl & rhinestone stations.  I love this necklace.

I'm at the other end of our small front porch, just for a change of scenery.  We have some noisy blue jays zipping around, because the neighbor's feeder is empty.  
Thursday is darker still, but still with some color,  My old black Investments II pull-on pants with added cuffs, another Zac & Rachel blouse with a pleated bib front in green reptile print that matched the dark green reptile embossed shopper purse (Thanks, Sis!), the black Alfani wedge sandals, and a silvertone multiple-chain necklace, knotted & with rhinestone rondels strung on it.  

Yeah, we brought our empty pots from the old house, meaning to put herbs in them, but I don't see anything growing there...
TGIF: I wore jeans!  Actually they're White Stag stretch denim jeggings, with a Charter Club Woman nautical print cotton blouse that has sparklies around the neckline (no need for extra bling), with a Faded Glory tank under the rather thin blouse, my dark blue handbag, and the blue Alfani sandals.  Macy's had these sandals in about eight colors, wish I'd bought two more pairs!

Ooo, check out the earrings: articulated enameled fish!  Fun, and I though they went with the nautical theme.
Well, kids, it's been real, but I haven't even had my coffee yet so ... I gotta get that!

Thursday, July 16, 2015


Here it is:

My Jadeite Color Affection, and hey these colors are actually pretty darn close to life.  It makes me happy to look at it.  I may not get a lot done on it this weekend, as I'll be hemming some of the trousers Sis gave to me.  But just seeing it this far along, and looking this does me good!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Travels with Auntie

I am ...well, not happy, but perhaps pleased that my dear old Dad is now living much closer to Sis.  Instead of being at least 2 hours away and all alone in his home, he's about 10 minutes away and surrounded by friendly folks.  He has a microwave in his tiny apartment, so he can make himself a hot beverage or popcorn for TV watching.  Someone else cleans his apt, and the three squares are provided in a dining hall, but he can do his own laundry or pay to have staff take care of it.  And they all seem to really care too.  Everything is clean and well lighted.  The food is delicious!  I had lunch with him there twice, and was pleasantly impressed both times.  So, the place is great -- there's a well-kept walking trail around the property, and Pup uses it daily -- but he still manages to have problems.  He has a shower stall, with a rim of about 3", but he's tried to take a bath in it, flooding his bathroom.  He's a little paranoid about his laundry, and keeps thinking "they" are angry with him about it.  Because he doesn't see well, he was using what he thought were personal wipes to clean up after his walks, only the canister was full of bleaching cleaning cloths for the bathroom.  That caused him to break out in a rash that took days to diagnosis; now Sis hides the cleaning wipes where he won't see the canister.  But for the most part he's pretty happy: he has an older lady friend across the hall, and spends a lot of time visiting with her.  He's always got to have someone to "help" so he walks her to the dining hall and sits with her.  Of course, he thinks he's known her for years, although both of them moved to this facility just a few months ago!
Gosh, I got really touched by Mr. Sis as he was taking me over to lunch with Pup.  Mr. S was really pushing me to get on the phone and change my flight home, so I could stay another week!  But  I couldn't because another coder was going to be out all the next week, and Box-O-Docs can only allow one of us coders at a time to be on extended absence.  It's nice to be needed....but seriously, if I'd stayed another week I might now be working in Austin!  It would have been so hard to tear myself away from the family.  Sis had more gifts for me, some things that she's been buying & squirreling away since my last visit (two years ago!?!), and some things that she found in the process of clearing out Pup's house.  There was a shirt box of Nana's knitting supplies, rather a surprise since I'd been told there weren't any left.  And there were surprises inside!  There are pattern books and booklets.  One in particular just about brought me to tears:

Mom wanted to make afghans for each of her kids.  I flipped through this one, and found notes in her handwriting.

Well, you can just see the handwriting on this one.  It says," In greens Carol".  Carol was my oldest sib, and Nephew is her only child.  Both Mom and Carol have passed, so this was rather poignant to see.  I kept turning pages, and found this one with a note too:
And of course, the reflection on the page is almost on top of the note!
There's my name on this lovely brown & cream colored pattern.  I'm verklempt as I write this, with tears in my eyes.  I miss my Mom so much.  Sis had no idea these notes were in here!  But she was with me as I found them, and saw how much this affected me, and still let me bring home these little bits of Nana's crafting.  Bless her heart.
Another of Nana's pattern books caught my eye; I think I've seen this one before and might even have a copy in my collection:
Men's Classics!  OMG, these all look like Mr. Rogers or Arnie Palmer style sweaters.  But I love the  Choose-O-Matic idea -- some help with modifying for fit.  I should really look for my copy, and destash it on Ravelry.  Sis had some other nice things for me, one being Clara Parkes Knitter's Book of Yarn!  Hardbound, lovely book, something I've thought about buying several times -- it will have a place in my library.  There were also these books: feltFORWARD Modern Designs in Knitted Felt (Maggie Pace, softbound from Interweave -- new!), Fresh Felt Flowers 17 Stunning Flowers to Sew & Display (Lynne Farris, C & T Publishing softbound, also new), Knitting Dictionary 800 Stitches Patterns (Old! published by Mon Tricot, looks like about mid-60's, black & white softcover).  Stitch dictionaries are always welcome.  Sis has a "thing" about felting, I guess she'd like to have some felted knits and since I now have my very own washer & dryer (no more schlepping down to the laundromat) I think I should give it a go.  I have another project for Sis that should take precedence, something very specific she asked for at my last visit: needle felted doggies.  I have the pattern book, and roving and tools that I bought, but have never tried it.  One of those side "avenues" of fiber crafting that I just haven't any great urgency to explore.  But hey, I might like it!  
Yesterday, Disco & I ironed a bunch of the blouses from Sis' closet.  Disco had never ironed before, and really did not want to iron even one blouse.  But after a while, she kinda got into it!  We took turns, one ironing while the other held down the wobbly ironing board & played Mahjong on my phone.  Those tops were just part of the lighter weight ones; today we're to work on the cotton and linen blouses (what Sis' housekeeper calls "rich wrinkles").  So, friends, it's time to get Disco up & dressed, because first we're going to TJ Maxx for more hangers!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Promises, promises

I said I'd post some about my last trip to Texas.  Sorry for making you wait; I know y'all are just about to turn blue holding your breath for this one.  This trip was about as spur of the moment as it's possible for me, since it started with the airline reservation being changed the day after I bought the tickets.  I did have the sense to ask for a wheelchair at check-in -- it's only about a 2 mile walk from the check-in to the gate!  Much nicer to ride that distance, and my assistant got a pre-boarding pass for me, too.  While sitting at the gate, I rewound the Shibui Sock (light green, sorry don't have the ball band handy).  I usually don't do a lot of people watching, but did see two young boys traveling alone (separately).  I showed them some Fuzzhogs, and they each took one.  I had cast on and knit the first few rows of my Jadeite Color Affection, when it was time to board.  After getting situated on board, before takeoff, I took a pic of the shawl.
I think that's about eight rows in.  I knit a bit, and gave away another Fuzzhog, and just before landing I had this much done:
Yes, I had to hang it on the tray table latch to get a picture.  Couldn't do that now!  I have eight of the twelve contrast color A stripes done.  If you've knit this puppy you know where I am.   So, I landed in Austin a little early due to a terrific tailwind.  I had packed all I needed into the medium size luggage, and set that down inside the large size, so really only had one bag to wrangle off the carousel.  And I got help with that -- if you're wagging a cane folks want to help.  I figure that's only right, so I let them.  Sis showed up in Memaw's car (Memaw doesn't drive anymore, thank goodness!), with the Peerless T!  My how that girl has grown up.  She helped her ma get the luggage in the trunk, and accepted a Fuzzhog.  (Are we tired of these silly things yet?)  The three of us went to The Egg & I for lunch, then picked up Pup at his new digs.  Then it was on to the house.  I had a wonderful surprise there, as my brother and sister-in-law had come from Oklahoma to spend a few hours.  I hadn't seen them in several years, so this was a treat.  SIL looks great, she's lost a lot of weight.  Bro is still more or less bear-shaped.  I didn't ask if they objected to seeing their faces on here, so you won't see them.  So, there we were, the three surviving siblings & dear old Pup.  I can't think that there will a lot more such occasions; Pup has dementia and I have my health conditions, so I guess it's a toss up as to which of might shuffle off first.  Well, we had a nice visit, but Bro & SIL had to go home.  Before leaving Bro passed on something our nephew had told him about wanting another puppy.  Nephew had arranged to go to a breeder for a pup, and when he arrived the breeder said there was a second pup available if he wanted it.  So Nephew calls the wife, and gets the skinny, she telling him "It goes puppy, BABY, puppy".  So I guess they're "gettin busy" so he can get another puppy!  Love it!
There was a pool party planned for Peerless and her classmates, and I think 4 or 5 little girls showed up.  Mr. Sis grilled a nice batch of burgers & dogs, and we had sides too.  Pup & Memaw stayed inside, and I stayed with them.  After the party & dinner both our elders went to their respective homes, and when Mr. Sis got back we all just deflated and went to bed.
Sunday after breakfast, Sis & I "retired" to her second closet (!!).  She is a professional, and really works at looking the part.  Piecing together this story, Sis had been trying to lose a good bit of weight, while still wearing her same old wardrobe.  Eventually, some weight came off and these clothes started hanging on her -- not the look she wanted!  At this point she was pretty close to the size I am now, and really tired of wearing old clothes.  So she went shopping, as only Sis the Super Shopper can, buying a lot of clothes but rarely paying more than 50% retail for any of them.  And she was buying nice clothes, Charter Club and various designer names.  Anyway, she started wearing her new wardrobe, believing she'd be wearing these things for a while based on the long slow process she'd been thru to lose weight.  However, as sometimes happens, she suddenly lost about 20 lbs, and then over about a month lost another 10.  And she was back to baggy clothes!  Unacceptable!!  So, she sorted all these too-big clothes into the second closet, meaning to take a lot of them to work to sell to other ladies there.  Then she found out I was to visit!  So for four hours Sunday, we had a marathon sizing session in her closet.  I was in and out of pieces one right after another for four freaking hours.  But  now I have a nearly new wardrobe; actually, some of the blouses still had tags on them.   Two big moving boxes of clothes just arrived via FedEx on Friday last.  I'm going to have to refigure how I'll be storing the yarn stash, since I'll need the closet in the the front bedroom for my own second closet!   I am just thrilled, what a nice gift from my Sis, with whom I used to get so angry because she would raid my closet!  Sis and I figured that with what she gave me and my own puny wardrobe, I could go to work for 250 days (about a year) without repeating an outfit there.  So, if you've been paying attention, you've seen the first 3 weeks of that process here.  I'm gonna need a spreadsheet, I think.
One thing quickly became clear: I needed some better bras!  And appropriate bling to wear with my "new" duds!  On Tuesday, Sis & I went shopping, Sis-style.  First we hit Hancock Fabrics for supplies needed for (oh noes!) more Fuzzhogs -- I'm commissioned to produce one for each of the cheerleaders at Miss A's school.  More on that later.  Then we went to TJ Maxx for some padded push-up bras so I be a sexy Mama.  While there we picked up some bling.  Then we went to the Clothes Mentor for more bling.  I need to call those folks, and tell them that Nashville needs them!   What fun!  Check out these pics (sorry, cell phone & night time shots -- bleh!):

Some of these items came from Savers, which we did not visit until Saturday just before my flight home.  The Plaidman hung up an accordion-style hanger to hold these in the master bedroom, and it looks like an art installation.  
Well, it sounds like dinner may appear soon, so I'll close this & come back to my travelogue in another post.  

Monday, July 6, 2015

How I figured it, aka Week 3 of Challenge

How did Sis & I come up with 250 for the number of workdays with no repeats of my outfits?  We looked at the "average" work year, which is 50 weeks for most folks here.  At 5 workdays per week, that came out to 250 days.  Of course, that doesn't take into account holidays, or the fact that I get a lot more vacation time than 80 hours.  But to make it easier to reference all these outfits, I'm going to group them in fives.  So...last week had a holiday.  This week I'm taking some more vacation time, in fact I won't go back to work until next Monday.  This week's Challenge combines last week's 4-day week with this week's 1-day.  Magic!
Last Monday I wore this:
No, not the bougainvillea!  But it is pretty.

This blouse has no labels anywhere, and seems to be rather plastic!  I was hoping the bright color would help me wake up.  

Sis gave me a slough of jeans, which we (at work) were allowed to wear all week.  Those are brand new Style & Co thong wedge sandals; you can't see but there are golden buckles on the outside of the instep strap.  Makes them dressy enough to wear to work!  These jeans are Lee Riders.  
Tuesday I got a little dressier, still keeping with jeans:
These white jeans are labelled U-51.  They are a tiny bit snug.  Need to lose 10 lbs....

The blouse is Caribbean Joe Woman, love that aqua & green tie dye!  And here's that green leather purse again.  You know, I had the hardest time talking myself into buying it, because the color didn't really "go" with much.  But darned if it doesn't just go with lots of clothes! Those are my new Alfani low wedges, which I'd ordered from Macy's.

And this delicate & pretty!  I'm pretty sure this was from Clothes Mentor.
Wednesday was darker, in brown Faded Glory jeggings:
The top is knit, with a nice (deep!) scoop neck.  Check out that envelope bag, from Loop -- appliqued in leather, cute as a button but not at all "roomy"!  The only way to get to stay closed is to just about empty it.  I found an old necklace (I don't throw away jewelry) made of a fabric tube with marbles inside, each separated from the next by a wide spacer on the outside of the tube.  Those sandals are a purchase from last year, cork wedges with studded leather straps.

And what in hell was I looking at?? Oh yeah, the Plaidman was putting up our flag on the porch.  
Thursday was rather dark too.  These are Amanda jeans, by Gloria Vanderbilt, in a deep plum color.  
I know! I look so "put together"; but looks are deceiving.  Half way thru the day one of my earring backs jumped ship.  I put this one earring in and faced right, then moved it to the other ear & faced left!  This blouse is from Croft & Barrow, a fun purple & blue paisley.  That purse was a gift from Sis at a previous visit; she took the Peerless T shopping for Auntie Anna's birthday gifts.  Sis picked out a dark green alligator print bag, and asked Peerless what else should we get?  Peerless says Auntie loves purses, and loves green & purple, so we'd better look for a purple purse!  And I love my purple purse.  Seriously, who doesn't need a purple purse?!?

The necklace is from Savers, big bright pink beads, and brown beads, with that "wooden" pendant.
The sandals are very old & much loved SAS sandals.
And to complete the set of five, here's what I wore to work today:
The capris are White Stag, light weight cotton in navy.  The blouse is Charter Club Woman, made in India, very thin cotton in a red & blue paisley.  So thin, I put on a tank top under it so my fuchsia bra wouldn't show through.  Those are the blue Alfani wedges again.

And that purse is another gift from Sis, darling blue suede with lots of pockets & a very colorful lining.  The only name I found is on the zipper pull, Maxx.  No bling except earrings.  Now, you may see short slacks -- but I swear these are capris.  It's just ME that's so short; the trousers would be capris on someone 3" taller!