Monday, February 26, 2018

Beginning of Week Inspiration: Sharing A Psalm

Sharing Excerpts from Psalm 91

"You who sit down in the High God's presence,
spend the night in Shaddai's shadow,
Say this: "God, you're my refuge.
I trust in you and I'm safe!"....

He ordered his angels
to guard you wherever you go.
If you stumble, they'll catch you;
their job is to keep you from falling."
Psalm 91: 1-2, 11-12

These excerpts from Psalm 91 are among my favorite Bible verses. They speak to God's amazing love and protection for us, no matter what may be happening in our lives. Think of someone you love right now; it may be a spouse, your children, a friend, sibling, nieces/nephews, or someone else. Now, multiply that love by one million. You are just now beginning to get close to the kind of love that God has for us. Pretty amazing isn't it?! Hard to fathom, even. As children of God, we are always in His eyesight and He knows what has happened in the past, what is happening now and what will happen in the future. And, no matter what, we are safe in trusting in our Heavenly Father. To some, these words may seem to trite, too simplified. Some may be tempted to say, "But, you don't know what has happened in my life.."  And, you're right. I don't know the hurts and pain that have happened in your life. But, God does. He carried you through those horrible times, He is with you now and He will be with you in the future. When I become fearful or afraid about life, these verses are like a soothing balm that remind me I am never alone. May this scripture calm you and may the words go with you throughout this week. 


Friday, February 23, 2018

Socks and Sandals and Heels, Oh My!

Fashion Risk Taking

I can imagine a few trains of thought that readers might take with today's fashion post. One might be, "Oh dear, Debbie has reached that age where she thinks it's OK to wear socks with sandals." Or perhaps, "Oh my, Debbie's sense of style is quite European today!" Or maybe even, "Ye Gads, what was she thinking?!"

No? None of these? Whew! That's me sighing in relief. Actually, this outfit came about because of this wonderful warm weather we keep having. I decided I wanted to wear a dress today, but felt like my legs might be chilly if I went bare legged, so I added black leggings under this Faded Glory brand shirt dress that I  picked up several months ago at Walmart. The dilemma then became, what will I wear on my feet?

I had bought these euro soft by Sofft sandals at the end of the season during a trip to DSW and they have been hanging in a shoe bag all winter just itching to be worn! I was anxious to see how they would feel being worn for several hours, so I was happy to oblige. The only problem was that I'm not quite ready to bare my toes to the is still February after all!  So, I decided to extend the leggings look by adding black socks to the mix. Not sure that I "love" this look but, you know what? My feet were pretty darn comfy while I ran around doing errands and the sandals also match my tote bag nicely! The color of the shoes and bag also is found in the dress pattern which blends everything together nicely. Still....I know....socks with sandals.....hmmmm.

It was even warmer when I got home from running errands, so I decided to snap a few more photos. Only this time I ditched the sandals (and socks!) and went with my Abella pumps instead. I'm really enjoying owning this pair of comfier heels. The heel height is just right for me.

The bad part of having such warm temps in February is that you know we're going to have more cold weather. And, it will be so disheartening when that happens! I've been seeing daffodils in bloom! They are already talking on our local news about how the "Blizzard of '93" occurred in mid-March. I don't know that we'll have a blizzard (I certainly hope not!) but I know more winter weather will come. I have to admit that I like this look a little better, with the heels rather than the sandals. But, even though these are comfy pumps, I was more comfortable in the sandals. That's what happens, I think, as we age. At least for me. I would rather be comfortable than stylish. 

So, let's have one more look. What do you think is best?

Socks with sandals.....

Or dressier black pumps?

What do you like best?  What would you wear?  Hope you'll leave a comment and make my day happy!

Until Next Time,

Monday, February 19, 2018

Dreaming of Spring...Dresses and Things!

Doing A Little Spring Day Dreaming
(Not A Sponsored or Gifted Post. No payment was received for brands/stores mentioned in this post. All writing and opinions are my own)

There's nothing like a little unseasonably warm weather to get one dreaming...about Spring and all the things that can go with Spring. First off, lighter, brighter the dress and filmy scarf wrap I'm wearing in the above picture. I love this color combination. How about some other pretty Spring dresses? Let's go "dream" shopping and see what we can find.

Three Quarter Sleeve Shift Dress with Self Belt
How pretty is this floral dress with 3/4 bell shaped sleeves? It really says "Spring" doesn't it? Bell shaped sleeves seem to still be "in" this season.


And how lovely is this paisley print faux wrap dress? I love the price points on both of these dresses on clearance at Stein Mart!


Wish I had someplace to wear this dress!  I wonder how I would look in that ruffled hem?!  This is more expensive than the other two, but oh so pretty!


I do believe that this light blue striped dress would look great as is or paired with white leggings. What do you think? The half sleeves are bell shaped. Love this style!

Finding anything so far you like for Spring? How about shoes?

Cigola Flat

I like this pink flat a lot. Don't know if I could wear that pointed toe or not, but it's a lovely Spring color!

Betunia Loafer

Hmm...what do you think about this leopard print?  Leopard print is certainly trending right now. Not sure how "Spring like" this is.

Lole Sandal
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OK, couldn't wear these in a million years, but, we're only dream shopping, right?!  Do you ever try something on just to see what it would look like on you even though you know you wouldn't buy it? Yep, me too!  Wouldn't these look smashing with that light blue striped dress with the bell sleeves?! (And I would be smashing down the stairs wearing them!)

Softey Slide Sandal

Uhhhmmmm...I don't think so. Although, these are probably very comfortable. 

Camerolona Pump

Ooohhh, now I really think these are pretty! Maybe I could wear them since they have a block heel? I think these would go well with the ruffled hem hot pink dress. 

Neda Sandal

OK, this is more like it. I think I could wear this slip on sandal with either of the print dresses or the light blue striped dress. Plus, I wouldn't fall down wearing this block heel. Score!

How about if we finish off with some handbag shopping? 


I really like this blue tassel clutch. Very pretty. I'm always drawn to blues.


This is a nice floral bag with a longer strap. The colors are very Spring-like!


Love this hot pink tote. I still enjoy carrying a tote with a smaller bag inside that I can pull out and carry into stores. This would work well with that. 


This smaller dome satchel would be a practical choice for both hand carrying and wearing on the shoulder. And...the flowers and colors say, "Spring!"

Well, this dream shopping spree is coming to a close. Which of the dresses, shoes or purses was your favorite?  Didn't find anything you liked? No problem. The great thing about "dream shopping" for Spring is that you can do it whenever you like at no cost to you! 

Hope you'll let me know what you liked. I love your comments!

Until Next Time,

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Mid-Week Inspiration: Finding Hope

A Little Bit of Hope

It is rare that I go a whole week without blogging. But, in recent days, my mood has been so gray that I just didn't feel like putting forth the effort. I've had a little bit of a "pity party" although I hate to admit to it. The winter months are always depressing to me and my shoulder woes have added additional irritation, along with a few other bits that I won't bore you with. If you have ever suffered through feeling the "blahs" and walking around teary eyed, then you know what I've been feeling. 

I feel a bit guilty even admitting to having these feelings, because, in the scheme of things, I have so much to be thankful for in my life. But, the dreary days of winter can lead to dreary moods. And, yes, having a chronic pain in your shoulder doesn't help! Sometimes, just reminding yourself over and over that you "shouldn't" feel down doesn't help. It's actually much healthier to "feel what you feel" and admit to it. So, that's what I'm doing.

I'm happy to say that today has given me renewed hope. The sun is shining (hallelujah!) and the sky has been blue with mostly fluffy white clouds. And, best of all, we actually have temperatures in the 70's here in Asheville! 

I went walking at the North Carolina Arboretum today and reveled in the warmth and sunshine!  It was so wonderful to be outside and, although no flowers are blooming yet, I can think back to when I've been there and everything was in full bloom! Remember when I shared the lego exhibit that was at the Arboretum? Can you believe the butterfly and flowers in the above pic are all legos??!

Being outdoors surely lifted my spirits and I am happy to report that, for the time being at least, my shoulder has stopped aching. I know that this warm weather will not last (it's much too early)  and my shoulder will ache again, as my frozen shoulder has not yet reached the "thawing" stage. Dreary days will come again and there is more physical therapy in my future. But, how wonderful to have a reprieve! Today has given me hope, and that is just what I needed to get out of my blue mood. 

As I was driving to the arboretum today, these verses from Ecclesiastes kept coming to mind; 

"To everything there is a season.....a time to weep and a time to laugh..."

I've certainly been in a weepy season recently. But, today, I was given the gift of laughter, and happiness and blue skies and sunshine! I was given hope! And, I feel so much better for it. I know that, no matter what mood I am in, I am always loved by a mighty God, who stays with me through the gray days.....and the days filled with blue skies and sunshine!

What kind of day are you having? Gray and dreary...or bright and sunny?  Hope you will share!

Until Next Time,

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Things I'm Delighted to Share

Short But Sweet..Things I'm Enjoying
(Not A Sponsored or Gifted Post. All Writing and Opinions Are My Own)

You haven't heard much from me this week, I'm afraid, as I've gotten sidelined for a couple of reasons. The online class I am currently teaching has been much more labor intensive than previous ones. This is a good thing as I have more students! The class is wonderful and I have been amazed at the thoughtful online discussion that is occurring. But, it is taking up a lot of my time which means less time for preparing blog posts! On a less happy note, I have had shoulder pain issues around my rotator cuff and am in physical therapy for six weeks! The physical therapists are thinking I have a frozen shoulder. I'm doing exercises multiple times a day to help with this. It's definitely an "Owie..."  So, today's post will be short and sweet as I share some things with you I am currently enjoying. First off, is the pillow that you see in the above picture.

Before things got crazy, I sewed this pillow with my own two little hands and I'm very delighted to share it with you! I have had this fabric for years and used it to create table displays. This year, I decided it was time for a pillow. Although it works well for Valentine's Day because of the hearts, the patchwork colors really go with any time of the year. I don't plan to pack this pillow away after Valentine's Day. It's the perfect size to spruce up our bed and to tuck behind my head or to prop under my sore arm. 

Next on the agenda: I'm back with Olay!  I used to use the original Oil of Olay years ago as a face cream. Then, my sister got me started with using the Clinique dramatically different lotion and I gave up using Olay. A year or so ago, I received the Olay Serum as a Christmas gift and loved it so much that it has now become my go-to face serum! I recently bought some of the original Olay lotion to supplement the serum. I love the way the serum makes my face feel and my makeup flows right on after applying the serum. I don't dislike the Clinique lotion, but the price keeps going up and I must admit some irritation over the fact that the stores that offer the "free gift" Clinique bags keep increasing the price point you have to buy in order to qualify for getting the free gift bag.  So, I'm back with Olay and delighted to share it with you! I will say, the serum is not cheap, but it works for me! The original Olay creme is about $8 bucks at our drugstore. It may be even cheaper at Walmart. I know the serum is cheaper there than the drugstore prices. 

Finally, I'm delighted to share these little stone garden critters with you! I picked these up at A.C. Moore and I just think they are adorable. I love the colorful flowers on them. It has been so dreary in January and, now, in February and I look for ways to bring some type of flowers into the mix. These are positioned on the porch table where I can see them as I work at the kitchen sink and as I stare at them the bunny and squirrel seem deep in conversation about something. What do you think they are saying to one another?!

Like I mentioned...short and sweet today! So, tell me, what are you delighted to share? Please take a moment to tell me!

Until Next Time,

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Weekend Inspiration: Being Generous With Words

Using Our Words For God

"Be generous with the different things God gave you, passing them around so all get in on it; if words, let it be God's words; if help, let it be God's hearty help." 
( From I Peter 4;  The Message)

Earlier this week I came upon this scripture during my devotional time and it seemed to speak to me. The emphasis on being generous with words, and letting those words be God's words, gave a sort of blessing to the "work" I have been doing in retirement. Blogging and teaching online, has become a true joy and something that I both feel passionate about and also feel a responsibility for handling properly. I want to be proud of the words I put forth and I also want them to honor God. Although my blog is a lifestyle blog, and not every post is devotional, I still want to use my words carefully, no matter what type of post I am doing. The same holds true when I am responding to students on my online classes. 

This is true in all of life, though, isn't it? No matter what "work" we are pursuing, whether it be at home or somewhere else, we carry our faith with us. I know that for myself, I sometimes allow the irritations of life to get the best of me, and allow my words to not always be a blessing to others. I realize that this is part of being human, but, I'm not proud of it! Thankfully, we serve a forgiving God who meets us where we are, reminding us of the blessings and gifts we have been given. 

"May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing to you, Oh Lord, my rock and my redeemer." 
(Psalm 19:14)


Friday, February 2, 2018

A Touch of Red in my Plaid Cape

An Understated Valentine Look

Who says that you have to be decked out all in red in order to sport a Valentine look? Today, I'm shopping my closet to bring you an understated Valentine look with just a touch of red.

This plaid cape is the star of today's show. Purchased recently at A.C. Moore on sale, the black, grey, white and maroon red plaid colors match so well with a thrifted pink blouse and my black Gloria Vanderbilt pants and George brand heels. I love the length of the cape in back. 

I shot a close-up of the cape fabric so you could see how pretty the material really is. I understand that today is "wear red for women" for heart health day. So, this post fits right in, although it is not completely red! 

Even though I decided to let the cape do the talking in styling this outfit, you know I had to add some bling! I kept the jewelry fairly simple with this pretty gold stretch bracelet, a gift from one of my sisters....

And, these simple pink Paparazzi dangle earrings. The pink earrings tie together well with the pink blouse I'm wearing. 

Because of the way this cape is constructed, the front "flaps" of this cape would look great belted, as well, creating more versatility with styling. What do you think of this look? Do you have a cape in your closet? Are you a fan of plaid? Hope you will take a moment to share. Your comments make me happy!

Until Next Time,