Monday, February 25, 2013

Style Imitating Art Time!

untitled, by Sol Lewitt
Sweater - Forever 21+, Shirt - Target, Belt - Torrid, Skirt - TJMAXX, Tights - Walmart, Boots - Target

I'm a giant inconsolable pile of crabby right now. I'm going to chalk it up to a two day long headache and a weekend that was too short. Oh, and an unsatisfying episode of The Walking Dead. I'm not saying it was a bad episode, it just didn't accomplish as much as a normal episode does and since "Bad Choice" Andrea is the worst character on the show, I really wasn't into watching a whole episode where she (big shocker here) continues to make bad choices. She is so out of touch with everything! "Dur, Shane loved Rick. Duuur!"  

And yet awesome character after awesome character dies while "Bad Choice" Andrea persists through it all screwing everyone else over and jumping into bed with the worse people ever! I'm waiting for the episode where she starts boinking a zombie! Honestly, just one T-Dogg, Dale, Lori, Axel, or even Hershel's leg is worth a bazillion Andreas.

Ugh, see? Crabby. I am absolutely unfit for human interaction today.

Also, for any of you that watch the The Talking Dead, am I the only one who thought, "Someone should have told Lori to put some condoms in her Bug Out Bag, you know what I mean?"

It's a testament to my mood that the only thing I can think to write about today is TV. So, I'm just going to go eat food and watch more TV. Peace Out!

Friday, February 22, 2013

The Amazing Tale of Husband and Noelle to Go the Optometrist!

I really wanted to call this post Reading Rainbow after this amazing shirt but, it didn't fit with the story.

What time is it? It's bloggin' time! What time is it? It's bloggin' time! What time is it? It's bloggin' time!

My sister got me this skirt for Chritmas and my mom got me the Shirt and I can't believe how perfect they are together!

This is the amazing tale of Husband and Noelle go to the Optometrist!

I finally got Husband to agree to go to the optometrist on Monday and we both got eye exams and new glasses. He was really nervous about the whole thing and I was trying to ease his fears by telling him what it was going to be like. So, the following is my little monologue to him. 

These pictures were taken quite a while ago. We now have like two feet of snow on the ground.

" They are probably going to dilate your eyes and they will be sensitive for a while. Then they will sit you in a chair and pull this huge machine in front of your face and show you images. This part is always the hardest for me because the doctor is always like, "Which image is clearer? A or B? A or B?" And in my head I am thinking, Oh god, they look exactly the same. If I don't pick the right one I am going to fail and my prescription is going to be off. Oh god! Ok, I think it's A. No, B! Definitely B. Wait...maybe it's A. Just say one before he thinks you're crazy! 

Then after hemming and hawing your way through the exam, you are taken into a room where you have to sit in front of another machine and try to not to flinch while it blows a puff of air into your eye. To sum it up, going to the eye doctor, for me, is like taking a mid term that I didn't study for and then letting the teacher poke me in eyes at the end"

He was not satisfied with my explanation.

When the day came, we packed the whole family into the car and made our way to our brand new optometrist. And let me just say, it was way too fancy y'all. The sign actually said, "Optimistic and Optical Boutique."  These people really didn't appreciate us marching in with two kids under three and trying to juggle exams and picking out glasses while the little ones terrorized the office. The "optician" (i.e. lady who follows you around while you look at glasses) made several rude comments and made us feel really uncomfortable. 

Miraculously got to the part where we could pick out our frames and my finickiness just about gave Ms. Optician an aneurysm. Honestly though, if I'm given two images and I can't decide which is clearer, how am I supposed to pick one pair of frames from a hundred different pairs? It's just too much to ask from me!

Then, Husband, with his freakishly jumbo-sized head* (I love your head, honey), couldn't find a pair that were big enough for him and Ms. Optician had to go into the backroom and pull out more glasses. Luckily, the biggest pair in the office actually fit him and they looked good on him. Success!

Even though we gave them a bunch of money, I know they were glad to us leave.

*I just want to point out that two of his children, complete with jumbo-sized heads, came out of my regular-sized lady bits. I don't think I get enough recognition for that.


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day Loves!

I woke up to a pretty cool surprise this morning. Husband set up a whole pirate themed treasure hunt for me that I had to follow to find my gifts. It was so hilariously cute. I made Husband read me the clues out loud in his best pirate voice, which he is actually pretty good at. When I finally found my present the card even said, "To my scurvy lass." That is follow through right there! Then the inside of card was so sweet it actually made me tear up.

My Valentine's Day "Booty," shoes, jewelry, and Dr. Pepper. Husband really knows  the way to my heart.

We have had fancier and more elaborate Valentine's Day plans but, there was something so sweet about all four of us, in our pajamas, running around the house yelling, "Arg, Matey!" and laughing as we searched for these bright pink note cards that just made this the best Valentine's Day ever. 

So, now I am giving all of you a little valentine!

Husband left for work and the kids are napping, so I'm going to go dream about tattoos now! Bye!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Classy with Just the Perfect Amount of Trashy

My sister and I were bantering back and forth on Sunday and I honestly cannot remember why I said this but, I told her, "You're so trashy your uterus would reject such a classy baby." (Hearing that out of context makes me sound like a horrible person) She turned to me and said, "Pssht. Whatever, I'm classy with just the perfect amount of trashy," and I had to giver her major points for that one.

I've thought about it a bit since then and I've realized that all the best people I know fall into this category, classy with just the perfect amount of trashy. Rocking tattoos and pearls, getting drunk on wine, meaningful conversations that always end in a dirty joke. The perfect balance.

This is my new goal in life.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Style Imitating Art time!

Prinzessin Victoria Louise Poppy - Papaver orientalis by Colleen Parker

Scarf - Target, Cardigan - Target, Dress - Torrid, Brooch - Vintage, Boots - Payless

Sooooo, I know this is very close to the outfit I wore for the last round of SIA. But, I didn't have much else to play with to achieve the color palette and feminine, organic quality of the painting for this week's SIA. So, suck it up, y'all.

I'm really not the kind of person that avoids wearing the same thing twice. If I love something I want to get as much use out of it as possible. This cardigan, for instance has been a very trusty companion for years and I've found a multitude of ways to wear it. I also think I lived in the dress all summer long. You might be able to tell by this point that I have a thing for lace dresses and it ain't goin' away!

I did try to give it a bit of a different look with the brooch and scarf though. It does take it in a little different direction.

I was really taken with the beauty of this painting, especially the different shades of orange and pink. I decided to use my make up to mimic some of the great color by keeping it overall natural and using bright coral pinks on my lips and cheeks. It brought a sense of life and freshness to my face that is reminiscent of the painting.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Heart and the Bottle: A Children's Book Review

This is something a little different than what I have been posting but, some of the greatest loves of my whole life are books and there is a very special place in my heart for children's books. The best children's books combine the written word with stunning illustrations to pack heartfelt, poetic, and humorous tales into ten sentences that span twenty pages. They are these little concentrated powerhouses of storytelling and I just can't get enough of them. 

The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers is definitely one of the best kinds of children's books. I picked it up as a Christmas present for the boys after we fell in love with Stuck by Oliver Jeffers, which is another incredible and hilarious book. Because Stuck is so lighthearted and funny, I expected something similar from this book but, to my surprise, it was something quite deep and powerful.

It begins as a story about a little girl who has all the "curiosities of the world" inside of her. You watch as she and her grandfather go on adventures, both in real life and through books. The words are simple but the illustrations are much more complex and tell a story in themselves. The author's flair for humor was clearly evident throughout the illustrations and as we really investigated the pictures many of them had us laughing out loud.

 One day, the little girl discovers that her grandpa's chair is empty and she is struck with a terrible sadness. To help herself  feel better she puts her heart in a bottle and tries to go on with her life. But, with her heart put away she has lost all of her wonder and life becomes a mundane chore. We watch as she grows up and we see how she rediscovers that part of herself that embodied her child-like curiosity.

It might seem like a heavy topic to tackle but, the way Oliver Jeffers writes the tale it both breaks your heart and puts it back together again. The death of a grandparent is something that children go through and the author manages to capture the experience and show the healing process in a way that doesn't feel like we're reading a book written for the express purpose of helping a child cope. I honestly did not expect Sawyer to understand the subtle emotional nuances but, he did and it was something he really wanted to talk about. He was as captivated by the little girl's journey as I was.

The illustration style is just gorgeous. It's really unique and whimsical in the way he combines beautiful watercolor landscapes with childlike doodles. But what really gets me about the illustrations are the scientific diagrams rendered in that sort of child like, hand drawn manner. The last page of the book is actually a complete diagram of the human heart drawn in what looks like crayon. I'm completely drawn in by this element because it is exactly how I imagine a child's mind works. A child's thought process is all about curiosity, imagination, scientific experiment, observation, and marvel and Oliver Jeffers absolutely captures that.

Like I said, little concentrated powerhouses of storytelling.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Heavier Things...

The wind has left my blogging sail a little bit and I am unsure how to proceed. It seems that people may be getting the wrong impression of me and maybe I need to explain why I am putting my time and energy into this blog. These are actually going to be really hard words for me to write because, I am a private person and I often keep my heavier feelings inside. But, sometimes these things need to be said.

Amazing deal on this cardigan, right?

 I spent a lot of my life feeling like I couldn't do or wear certain things because I wasn't skinny. I have been bullied a lot and made to feel like I was less valuable as a person and I let that control me for a long time. I was so unhappy with myself and I could barely be around other people for fear of them judging me. I buried everything that was me under piles of fear and anxiety.

Then, I got sick of it and I just stopped letting other people define me. I honestly don't know where the motivation came from but, I just started caring more about what I thought of myself than what others thought of me. I started living more and letting myself enjoy life regardless of what I looked like.

I still face the reality of being bullied. It happens a lot less frequently but, every now and again, strangers will still laugh at me, make comments, or call me names. I still get sad. I still get angry. But, I don't consider myself the problem anymore.

This dress is completely amazing and even though the pattern is more appropriate for warmer month, I think  it is perfect paired with a neutral cardigan and warm scarf.

When I found the community of people in the plus-sized blogging world I was thrilled. These were people who had experienced similar struggles as me and had came out the other end with great attitudes! I could relate to these girls and I loved reading about their lives. I was inspired by their courage and it helped fuel mine.

When I left my job to be a stay-at-home mom I found myself with free time for the first time ever. It was great but, I also missed creating things and being a part of something bigger. So, I decided to start this blog  as a way to share my experience in the things I am passionate about, like fashion, style, and interior design. I started blogging to be a part of something again.

I think I want to be buried in this scarf. The color! The velvet! Gah! This is one of those things that  you see in the store and you know it completely defines you. Yes, I am an auburn, velvet, infinity scarf and proud of it.

God knows I don't do it to show off. I still feel a little fear every time I post new pictures as I am putting myself up to the scrutiny of the biggest bully machine that exists, the internet. Who actually wants to do that? Not me! I do it to connect with wonderful people and to create some positive imagery that might, hopefully, contribute to a more positive and accepting world.

Even if it kills me to think this, I do have to accept that the nature of my posts may make me look vain, narcissistic, or materialist to people who really don't know me. 

And in that case, any information I include on my posts is purely informative. When I include the stores where I bought my clothes and the prices I paid for them, I do that to illustrate how I make my budget work for me. I like to show the items that I saved on, the ones I splurged on, and the ones I get great deals on to be completely transparent with you and with myself on how I build my wardrobe. It shows you how I choose to use my money and it keeps me aware of how much I am spending.

Maybe fashion isn't your thing and then it might look like I am spending a lot of money on something silly. But, everyone has a hobby, passion, or a habit that they spend a lot of money on. What I spend my money on may not be what your spending your money. But, it works the other way around too (that is if you don't have a serious clothes habit).

Maybe you think clothes are superficial and this whole thing baffles you. But, to me, what I’m wearing feels like an extension of my spirit. It's thrilling to collect bits and pieces that can be put together to make something beautiful. I see each piece of clothing or jewelry as having a story to tell. Colors and patterns and textures can speak to me. They can be touching and moving and meaningful in ways that cannot be quantified. Basically, it's anything but superficial to me.

But, I also know that just me! That's who I am and how I feel. What you wear and what you look like doesn't make one bit of difference to me. I like to see people for their spirit or their essence and I try to appreciate everyone for their personal style, even if it is dead opposite of mine. I love to see other people expressing themselves in a way that is right for them.

I guess I don't really feel the need to defend or justify what I am doing, it just makes me sad that some people are taking negative things away from something that I want to be 100% positive.