Dishing Up a Boho Dress for Fall

Yesterday, we celebrated my son Chase,’s 15th birthday. As we do with all of our kids, we asked him what he wanted to eat for his birthday dinner. To my surprise, he said he wanted a “Guamanian dinner.”  My mom is from Guam and I remember eating plenty of Guamanian dishes when I was a kid.

So I tried to follow in her footsteps and I made chicken marinated in soy sauce, vinegar and onions; Kelaquen (a ground chicken, lemon and coconut mixture); “red” rice made with Achiote seeds; and Lumpia (ground beef and mixed veges wrapped and fried in filo dough). The meal was deemed a success for the birthday boy and everyone else who came to his party.

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Goodbye Big Red, Hello Black Leather

If you follow my blog, you may know that when my husband and I married, we each brought two sons to our family. We struggled for a couple of years with transporting them around together in one vehicle because we didn’t own one big enough for six people. Then we found “Big Red.”

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The Long and Short of It

Welcome back to my roundup of fall trends for 2017! This week I covered animal prints and the color red, both trends that the fashion experts say we’ll be seeing a lot of this fall. Today, I’m showing one more trend: the long cardigan. Continue reading “The Long and Short of It”

Animal Prints: A Trend or a Classic?

I always find it interesting when magazines and retailers start touting the new trends at the start of every season. It seems to me that some of the trends they are referring to are things we’ve all seen before in some shape or form. For example, according to the fashion industry, animal print is going to be big this fall. But I’ve had animal print pieces in my closet for years! I’ve got leopard and cheetah gloves, scarves, purses, shoes, belts, tops, sweaters, and coats. You can see one of my leopard print tops here and my leopard print shoes here. I also have a zebra-striped poncho that I love (and bought last year). Personally, I don’t consider animal print a trend, but a classic, which is why I rarely get rid of any of my animal print pieces. I know I’ll wear them every year all year long.     Continue reading “Animal Prints: A Trend or a Classic?”

Fall Transition Outfit No. 1 and a Rare Compliment

When you’re a mom of teens, compliments from them to you do not come fast and furious. At least not in my household. My teens seem to be mainly concerned about themselves. I don’t say that to be insulting or critical; it’s just a fact of life in Teen World. But last week, I received a compliment from one of my boys and it’s one of those moments that will stay with me forever.

Before my son Hunter had his knee surgery in July, he went on a hike with some of his friends. He said they were complaining about their troubled relationships with their mothers. I think at one point they looked at him to add some validation to their diatribes and he said, “Honestly guys, I don’t have that type of relationship with my mom. She is actually a lot of fun and I like being around her.”

Say What?

I asked him if he really said that or was he telling me he said that just to make me feel good. He assured me that he said that.

Wow. I know I felt my eyes well up with tears but I didn’t want him to see that because you, know, teens don’t want to be caught hanging with their crying mom. So I turned around quickly, grabbed that moment and locked it away till later.

And when it was later, I couldn’t stop thinking about what he said. Remember Sally Field at the Oscars (yes, I’m that old). You like me! You really like me! I was Sally Field in all her tearful glory. My son actually liked me and he wasn’t afraid to tell his friends. I’m welling up again.

Parent Performance Evaluations?

In a blended family of step-kids and step-parents, the blending takes time. Even when the blender is going really strong, things don’t always come out as smoothly as we’d like. But my husband and I try our hardest to ensure that each one of our kids knows that we love him no matter what.

Sometimes, it is hard to know how we’re doing. At work, most people are evaluated on their performance. I always knew I did well based on my boss’ feedback, the scores in my evaluation and subsequent raise. But parents don’t receive a performance evaluation (unless you base it on the number of rolled eyes, grunts and time spent in their bedrooms as feedback from teens), and we certainly don’t receive a raise from our kids. Sometimes it feels like we’re just grasping in the dark. But then you hear a compliment from your kid masked in a story about an afternoon out with friends, and all I can say is that I’ll take that over a raise any day.

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A Pink Dress In A Secret Garden

I’ve talked before on this blog about all the unique places in our downtown. I am amazed that for as long as I’ve lived here, I still find little nooks and crannies that I have never seen before. That happened to my husband and me after we went out to dinner earlier this week. We like to explore after our meal just to see what’s new in town. After pulling into a parking area so we could walk around, he noticed this little pathway between two buildings. It was lined with shrubs and had climbing plants on one wall and the lattice at the back. It connected two different parking areas between buildings, but really led nowhere special. Still, standing on this pathway made us feel as if we were in a secret garden. It was magical.

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Going Retro With A Gingham Dress

Do you remember the AMC television show, Mad Men? It was set in the 1960s ad world of Madison Avenue in New York City. The show ran from 2007 – 2015. I reserved every Sunday night from 9 p.m. – 10 p.m. so I could watch Mad Men. I loved every bit of it from the characters to the storylines, set pieces and best of all, the authentic costumes. To me, the fit-and-flare dresses, pencil skirts, and sheath silhouettes celebrated women’s figures in a tasteful way. Continue reading “Going Retro With A Gingham Dress”

Accessories Rescue a Black Swing Dress

I have mixed feelings about a swing dress. When I see them on other women, they look wonderful. When I see one on me, I cringe. On my body, they seem shapeless and frumpy. But this black one from J. Jill is so comfortable, I can’t kick it out of my closet. The material skims the body, is extremely soft, moves easily and is the perfect lightweight dress for summer. The length is just right, hitting slightly above my knees. Although you can’t see it, there is a cute inverted pleat on the back, giving this dress a little something extra to stand out among its colleagues. Did I say how comfortable it is? I could sleep in this dress! Continue reading “Accessories Rescue a Black Swing Dress”

A Work Outfit For All Seasons

Finding a work outfit that is appropriate no matter the season is a bonus for your closet! I’ve had this navy blue blazer and red dress in mine for several months and just this week paired the two for an office meeting. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. Navy blue and red are a classic combination and can work any time of the year. I’ve worn a different version of this mix before in this post. 

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A Denim Dress Never Fails

When I want an outfit that is comfortable, stylish, not too dressy but not overly casual either, a denim dress never fails. I bought this dress last summer from J.Crew, and it is on frequent rotation in my closet from spring through the early days of fall. In fact, I wore it on a road trip this weekend to my parent’s house. This is a great dress for when I am working from home the whole day, but it’s one that I can also run some quick errands in and feel put together. Continue reading “A Denim Dress Never Fails”