Saturday, November 30, 2013

Is Grey Your Color?

It's hard not to let my imagination run wild when I stand overlooking a partially frozen lake.  I toss a rock across to listen to the echoing clang bounce off the water and ice.  Sometimes the rock would hit with enough force to fall right through. Other times it rested on the surface.  Most entertaining is when the point of the rock would pierce the ice but not fall through.  The ice around the hole would begin to crack and spread. I should get more points for that one!

You know I didn't hang out for too long in that cold.  Each Thanksgiving week Mom Rowden takes my SIL, Debbie, and I out shopping for our Christmas gifts.  I look forward to it every year and always feel overly spoiled, if not undeserving!  Mom R. has a great eye and both she and Debbie are honest about what looks good and what doesn't.

As far as what I wore, I would say that easy on and off shoes would have been better for a shopping day, but other than that I was completely comfortable. I love the color grey and had to enlist help to keep myself from gravitating to more grey selections. Debbie continually pointed me to color, so thankfully a little variety now lives in my closet. Looking forward to sharing what I came back with.

Outfit Breakdown:
White Shirt : INC
Grey Shirt: Nordstrom Rack
Jeans: White/Black
Mittens: early Christmas gift
Boots: borrowed


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Stripes & Plaid, Brown on Black

We had a lazy morning. There was no place to be and it was cold outside - 24 degrees cold. Many of us stayed in our pjs for most of the morning.  A laid back feeling lasts only so long with 6 children cooped up inside. It was either brave the cold or risk something delicate of grandma's, so we bundled up and headed out.   How I wish the pictures would have captured the delicate, quick flakes that fell around us as we played.

Snow flakes fluttering 

To keep warm I layered and ended up liking the effect for more than just comfort. Stripes under my brown plaid. Cable zip up sweater and scarf. The wool mittens are borrowed and if I lived in this type of climate, I would definitely want a pair for myself!

An Illinois Corn Field Lays Dormant

There is something beautiful in the flat prairies of central Illinois. I love the trees and curves of Georgia, but find the backdrops here to be breathtaking. You can see for miles. Farm houses set in the middle of a field with a few trees surrounding them make for a serene landscape.   I keep telling myself to get outside early enough to watch the sunrise, but the cold, unhindered winds keep me snuggled in my flannel sheets.  One day!

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and although I miss my family back home, I feel blessed to experience this special Holiday here with a group of people who understand the meaning of a good harvest.  I will close with a big Happy Thanksgiving and a few snapshots of how we played.

Outfit Breakdown:

Vest: Talbots (passed down)
Cable Sweater (sam's club)
Brown Plaid (GAP - old)
Striped Layering T - GAP
Jeans - WHBM (gifted - old)
Boots (Target - passed down)
Mittens & Scarf : borrowed

P.S. I'm linking up with

***How We Played***

Teetering on the seesaw was fun for a about a half hour, but Lake Bloomington is just a walk away, calling the young and old to play.

We didn't get far before we noticed that the lake was partially frozen. Let the games begin!!

Not one of us could resist the urge to throw rocks onto the frozen surface. We competed to see whose rock could break through the ice and see who could "bowl" their rock into the water at the ice's edge. This is no backwoods entertainment people! It's good, old fashioned fun.

Hanging with the cousins is one of the highlights of Grandpa & Grandma's 

Yes, that is how my eldest son opted to leave the house.  At least no one else was craziest enough to venture out into the cold, thereby leaving family the only witnesses to his ensemble. I am so keeping this pic for future fun!!

When we were done with our play, we left the lake looking like this...


Monday, November 25, 2013

What Does the Fox Say?

It's 3 in the morning. The van is weighed down with luggage, snacks and portable electronics to keep the restless natives occupied on the journey we are about to begin. Total driving time is about 11.5 hours so I get to call it a journey, right? All that's left to bring is our 4 boys, who we leave sleeping until departure. Gently we wake them, hoping they will remain in their stupor and quickly fall back to sleep (and remain that way 'til daylight!!). We load the groggy little men, say a quick prayer and begin our travels to visit Glen's folks.

This is a well loved Thanksgiving tradition. What's not to love? Time with family. Great food. Spoiling. A jump on Christmas. (We exchange gifts early to get the joy of seeing everyone open each others gifts and to save ourselves the hassle of shipping them a month later.)

Of course I packed a few ensembles. Not too much though. My Christmas present from Mom Rowden usually includes a few new articles of clothing - yay!

Normally the weather in IL is somewhere in the 40s, so I planned accordingly...

Ahhhh, Glorious Sunshine

Hubby checked weather forecast for me. Apparently his definition of cold is different from mine. Chrissy's definition of cold: 40s 
Hubby's definition of cold: 20s
You can imagine my surprise when I decided to check the weather on the ride out here. 

I'm not long for the outside world...

It's cold and windy - BRRRRRRR!!!!!

My thin dress from the LOFT is more suitable to the Georgia weather, sweater not withstanding. So, I borrowed a different hat from Grandpa to help keep warm...

Hatee, Hatee, Hatee, HO!!

You know you want to sing it!! What does the Fox Say??? 

Later I added two more layers - chambray shirt under the sweater and a vest over everything. Layering is very popular right now, but I would have done it anyway.

Well, my blog pics may undergo a few changes for this week and I think that next time I will either check the weather myself or ask for specifics! I've been told there is a possibility of snow during our visit. Bring it...I've got Grandpa's fox hat!!

*Outfit Breakdown:
Sweater - Talbots (gift)
Dress - Loft 
Boots - Target (gifted)
Leather Bracelet - Target ($5 clearance)
Brown hat - GAP (old)
Fox hat - Grandpa (borrowed)

*Half the credit for this one goes to my sister, who helped finish off this ensemble. Sometimes we need an extra pair of eyes to get us out of those clothing ruts! 

Hope you are staying warm!


Friday, November 22, 2013

Working Through This Rut!

After my black leather skirt FAIL in the previous post, I went back to my closet again. The bed is covered in a growing pile of clothes and accessories.  My objective is to pull from what I already have (and maybe a few GoodWill finds) to make an updated and fresh look. This is a challenge I run into with each new season.   I try not to think about the fact that I have to hang everything back up as I try on one piece after another, taking photos when I like an ensemble (don't want to forget). This is all part of the initial time investment made that I don't always enjoy, but once I get the hang of it the fun begins. From this point I can determine what, if any, key pieces I'd like to add. I'm still figuring that out. So for now I will share a couple more outfits from the "in process".

***Improving...but we ain't there yet!***

Kicking through fall leaves always makes the outfit better, right? 

Not bad, but I don't love the length of this older skirt on me.  Solution: Cut and sew or roll up the elastic waist.  I think I will just roll up the waist.

Save for the purse, the articles of clothing in this ensemble have hung in my closet for years. In some ways I'm becoming a clothing pack-rat, only tossing out the items that don't fit or compliment me.  Stubbornly I hold onto certain items thinking I can make them work somehow and many times success is obtained.  If the closet begins to overflow then I will reassess.

***Great Pop of Color***

Yeah, I was twirling in my front yard. 

I like the length of this skirt and the pop of color. I would definitely wear this one out over the first one. Maybe an infinity scarf would make this one more complete?

Well, my friends. What do you think? Don't quit my day job??

Don't give up on me yet! I think a visit from my little sister was all I needed to get out of this rut.  Looking forward to sharing more.


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Stuck In a Rut: A Fashion Fail

I'm in a rut. R-U-T, rut.  The desire to run out and buy new clothes is strong so I may need to refrain from viewing fashion blogs right now.  It's blurring my lines of need verses want. I mean, are leather pants really a need? You can't eat them and I'm not sure they would even keep me warm.

So it's back to my closet, armed with ideas and inspiration from those fabulous ladies and their blogs I viewed, to try using what I have on hand.  First go round did not go well.  Hey we all have those moments, right? I hope.

Here is my first attempt at dressing fashionable in these blistery cool days...

No, No, No

I had the right idea pairing leather with plaid. Very cute, but somewhere between the oversized, hand-me-down skirt, hanging scarf and mid-calf boots I ended going hobo-esque.  Help me. I did wear this out. Just like this.  I'm laughing right now because the cool mug is not helping.

After viewing the pictures. I thought, "maybe ditching the scarf would help".

Getting Better, but Not there...what's the Deal?

Cool Mug is still not helping

Finally, I had to accept that the skirt was too big and made the overall look appear sloppy. So I traded this skirt with another that I like but have to suck it in to make it work.

What do you think? Better?

Well great, I just won't eat for the rest of the day.  (Perhaps it's time I get back into an exercise routine?)

This May Be It

Just Keep Your Abs Tight!! This can work.


The bigger skirt, coupled with the scarf - No, No, No!

Frustrated with my skirt debacle and the need to suck it all in,  I changed the bottoms entirely and finished the day out like this...

I'm Going To Eat!

The Safety of Blue Jeans

This is by no means my first fashion fail and I know it won't be my last, but that's how I learn and where the fun comes in! Hope you enjoyed sharing in my hard-knock learnings and if you have any suggestions or tips, please share! Help me get out of this rut.

Thanks for reading!


Friday, November 8, 2013

It's Out! The Close of Our Adventure

This past spring our family had the start of one of our most exciting adventures, which began with the submission of a blurry, silly family photo to a casting agency for a Disney water park commercial.  (The casting was for real folks. In other words, no professional actors.) It was a month of waiting and anticipation to get the final news that we were chosen!!

Talk about a whirlwind of craziness, that started on a flight with the six of us to Orlando.  We worked for three days at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon and made memories that will most definitely last our lifetimes.

This week the finished product is up on the website so I thought I would share it here! We laughed as a family because we had to watch it in slow motion over and over again to get a good look at us.  A couple of us received more screen time than others. Bummer. Click on the link below to be directed to the video. :)

As always, thanks for reading!


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Is It Time to Say Goodbye?

When I found this pair of brightly colored capris at Nordstrom for $5, I never thought I'd be reaching for them over my versatile jeans. But that is exactly how the fall season played out.  Comfort won over the whole, it's-so-obvious-I-wear-these-all-the-time feeling.

And although the temperatures have climbed back up into the low 70s, it's time I place these comfy capris into my seasonal storage tub and say goodbye for now.  To help ease my pain I thought I'd take a walk down memory lane and share a few of the ways I traveled around town (or out of town) in these pants.

****6 Ways I Styled Bright Capris****

Grey, White & Cobalt

Orange, Red, and Cognac

Purple, Red & and Splash of Green

Orange and White Stripes

Black and White Stripes

Nude and Grey

Proper homage has been paid. Now I just need some ankle length pants with the same fit to get me through the cold days ahead! Which way is your favorite and do you have a go to pair of pants/jeans?

As always, thanks for reading!

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