Stepping Back In Time With A Red Swing Coat

During my dad’s first military assignment on the island of Crete in Greece, we lived off base in a small apartment. It had no central hearing nor air conditioning. My parents had space heaters in some rooms, but they weren’t enough to keep us warm during the winter. Not that it gets super hot or cold there. The average temperature in January hovers around 52 degrees Fahrenheit with the hottest temps reaching about 79 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer.

Still, I remember plenty of cold nights in our little apartment during the winter. My parents didn’t feel it was safe to leave the space heaters on all night, so we would wrap ourselves in coats, hats and gloves. Then we would crawl under our many layers of blankets. In a family of four kids, we didn’t have separate coats for separate occasions. The coat I crawled in bed with was the same coat I wore to school, to play outside, to go to church, etc.

Maybe that’s why today I have a decent collection of coats. Trenches, casual coats, jean jackets, leather jackets and anoraks are all in my closet. I enjoy wearing each of them throughout the year. Continue reading “Stepping Back In Time With A Red Swing Coat”

Adding Elegance To a Floral Pencil Skirt Outfit

My youngest son found out last night that he got his first job! I’m so excited for him! It’s only part-time at a fast-food restaurant, but he is still in high school so he can’t take on too many additional projects. This is a huge accomplishment for him. He applied on his own and didn’t tell me until after he sent his application in. I took him to the interview and he thought he didn’t get it because he didn’t hear back from them right away. But he received an email last night asking him to come to orientation.

First jobs are always exciting in my opinion. He’ll feel that little streak of independence with something that is completely outside our family world. And then once that first paycheck comes in…..I’m sure it will feel like a million bucks to him!

My first job was at a Roy Rogers restaurant. Remember those? Maybe I’m dating myself. I had to wear a red polyester short-sleeve shirt, a denim overall dress, nude-colored nylons and – this is the best part – a cowboy hat.

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Poncho Sweater, Burgundy Booties and the Ageless Style Linkup

When I was little, my mom used to make pumpkin soup every Halloween. She would scrape out all the meat in a pumpkin and then boil it down until the meat was tender. She would then add some half and half, salt and pepper and heat it through. In the meantime, she would have egg noodles boiling on a back burner. When they were done, she would drain them and set a ladle full in each of our bowls. Over that, she would pour the pumpkin soup mixture. I’ll be honest, it may not have looked appetizing at the time, but it was still the best tasting soup I ever had.

I looked forward to eating that soup every Halloween. In my eyes, it heralded the official start of fall in our house. I knew that no matter how cool the autumn evenings would get, that pumpkin soup would warm me right through. Continue reading “Poncho Sweater, Burgundy Booties and the Ageless Style Linkup”

How To Layer A Warm Outfit for Fall Sports

My husband and I seem to be getting to a point in our lives where we want to make everything as easy and comfortable as possible. Our goal is for us to enjoy more quality time with our kids. With two of them graduating from high school this year, this time is even more important to us. Our motto is if someone/something can do it better and faster, let ’em at it!  Continue reading “How To Layer A Warm Outfit for Fall Sports”

What I Would Have Worn To The Pumpkin Patch

Last week my son came home and I thought I heard him say, Mom, I want to go to the pumpkin patch. My heart skipped a beat and my eyes lit up. I love going to the pumpkin patch! But I haven’t been for years because my teens don’t think it’s cool to hang out with mom and dad on the weekend at the pumpkin patch. But maybe my son had a change of heart.

When do you want to go? I asked.

I’m going tonight, with a girl from school, he said.

Aaaahhh. So it’s a date?

No, not a date. Just a friend. 

Guess I can’t come along and take some pictures for the blog?

Mom, that would be weird. 

Then my other son came downstairs. Mom I need a pumpkin. 

Yessss! I get to go to the pumpkin patch after all!

Mom, let’s just pick it up at the store.  My son had a busy Saturday planned and a party that night. He said he wouldn’t be able to make it to the pumpkin patch.

Sigh.

Continue reading “What I Would Have Worn To The Pumpkin Patch”

A Black Anorak Styled Two Ways

My husband is so creative when it comes to giving gifts. Over the years, he’s given me tickets to the ballet and the opera, taken me on a haunted house tour, had an artist sketch a portrait of our family, brought home a china cabinet and an antique roll top writing desk in a vintage store that I love, and taken me to a bed and breakfast for a weekend getaway. My birthday gifts this year were no different. He gave me a beautiful cocktail dress and then took me to dinner at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse in Richmond. He also gave me a gorgeous anorak that doubles as a raincoat. Continue reading “A Black Anorak Styled Two Ways”

What To Wear To Your Kid’s School Function

When my boys were little, I loved visiting them at school. Sometimes, I went to see them during their lunch period and I would bring them a special lunch from their favorite restaurant. Or I’d attend an event in their classroom. Since I worked full-time back then, it was always fun to spend a few extra minutes with my kids while they were in school. Continue reading “What To Wear To Your Kid’s School Function”

Today’s Headline: She Wore A Menswear Piece Like A Woman

Last week, three of my sons were in the newspaper. Hunter and Chase are members of their high school’s newspaper club and their first issue for the year came out. Hunter is a co-chief editor and Chase is a staff writer. Both wrote articles for the paper. It was pretty neat seeing their names in print and even cooler that they are the doing it together. Their journalism teacher says it’s the first time she’s had siblings work on the paper. I’m pretty proud of both of them because soon after I graduated from college, I wrote for a newspaper and then a magazine, so I’d like to think that the three of us share the writing gene.

My stepson, Jaekob, was also in our town’s newspaper. He is the captain of his school’s football team and was interviewed about a game the team won last week. His quote was quite good and reflected well on the team’s performance.

Like all parents, we have our ups and downs with our kids, but no matter what we go through, I am always proud to see them work hard and succeed at what they do.

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Keeping Leopard Print and Leather Classic For Work

This weekend my husband started decorating for Halloween. We set up a “haunted front yard” every year, and I never really know what he’s going to do. One year he built a coffin with fake body pieces coming out of it. Another year, he built what looked like an underground cage with zombie heads and arms reaching out. On Saturday I came home from running errands and he built a queen size bed in the front yard. That’s right, a bed. It has sheets and a fake body on top of it. His decorating is a multi-day event and he’s not done yet. On Halloween night, we both dress up. He’s usually some kind of horrific host, and I dress up to look like I’m a statue of some sort and scare trick-or-treaters when I make a sudden movement as they walk by.

It’s all in good fun and we have visitors who return year after year to see what we’ve done. Although we have some pretty scary scenes, we keep everything G-rated because we still want kids to enjoy themselves. But when we see adults walk through the yard, well, we like to put a little extra efforts into our scare tactics. Continue reading “Keeping Leopard Print and Leather Classic For Work”

Ponchos Make Life Easier

I was cutting up chicken for a new chicken pot pie recipe yesterday when my husband walks in the door from work. Right behind him came the roofing contractor working on our neighbor’s house. The two of them proceeded to talk about our own future roof replacement, which we have not yet scheduled but hope to within the next few weeks.

They start to ask me what color I want the shingles to be, whether I want them dark or light, whether we are planning to get the siding on the house replaced as well and what color the siding should be, yada yada yada. By now, the shallots are sizzling on my stove and I’m trying to follow the recipe in the magazine before me. Wine, it calls for a little bit of white wine.

Continue reading “Ponchos Make Life Easier”