Monday, August 2, 2021

Easy Ways to Enjoy Paper Crafting

 How Do You Spend Perfect Moments?


Hi everyone!  You know I love to do little bits of crafting even though I don't consider myself much of a crafty person. But one craft I have found that I CAN do is paper crafting. I love to sit at my kitchen counter surrounded by my scrapbooking paper, stickers, glue stick and scissors and just see what I can come up with to create. 


I've been keeping a scrapbook-journal the last couple of years that I fill with magazine clippings of pictures that "call to me" in some way and then I journal about the insights from these pictures. Tonight, I decided to add stickers and cut-outs of things that make me smile. The Asheville sticker was a recent gift from a sweet friend. I'll share a few more pages from my scrapbooking journal so you can see what I've been working on. 




I love to see the bold colors on the pages and the inspirational words that pop out at me each time I visit my scrapbooking journal! I am not a drawing artist but I can cut out and paste and use stickers! 


I also created the sticker filled totem pole you see in this pic. I love being creative with scrapbook paper and stickers. It's the perfect way to craft for someone like me. I can be in a bad mood and after an hour of losing myself in paper crafting I am all smiles....even if I do have a mess on my kitchen counter!

How about you?  How do you like to lose yourself?  What makes you smile?
Be sure to let me know in the comments, Ok?  I enjoy hearing from my readers!

Until Next Time,
Debbie








Thursday, July 29, 2021

Musings On Opinions About Fashion

 Opinions About Fashion


Hello everyone!  I've been musing this last week over people's opinions about fashion. Specifically, what women will often say about other women's clothing.


For instance, I was looking at Facebook the other day and this post came up which was really an ad. It was by a woman who was selling herself as a stylist for women over 50. She spent most of the post talking about what she called "outdated" clothing that women over 50 tend to wear. Things like capri pants and pants that are loose and don't hug our rears. 


This person also didn't like to see women wearing looser fitting tops (I'm assuming like tunics) as, according to her opinion, these type tops are aging and unflattering to menopausal tummies. Hmmmm.  As someone who:

a. is over 50 (and then some)
b. still wears capri pants
c. still wears some loose flowy tops 
d. has never liked tight fitting pants on my waist or my buns

I kinda took exception to this woman's ideas. My goodness, did someone send out a style memo to all the women over 50 and I didn't get one?!


I am more of the opinion that women over 50 should wear, first of all, what they like and, then, what flatters their particular body shape. All women are not created equal body-shape wise and it is important that they dress to flatter their shape and comfort levels and not what someone else thinks is right for all women of a certain age. Take the outfit I'm wearing today for example...


The pants I'm wearing are a cross between leggings and capri pants. The material is a bit spandex -like and very comfortable around the waist. Because of the spandex, I would not wear a shorter top with these capri pants. So, I chose a loose fitting Alfred Dunner tunic. I think it covers my bum appropriately and is loose fitting and comfortable around the tummy area. When I saw this tunic on Poshmark, I was attracted to the yellow background against the pretty multi-colored flowers. To me, this top just said "Summertime" and I couldn't wait to wear it. There are sparkly gems along the collar which add a little bling to the top. No necklace required! But, I did add some gold earrings and created a bracelet stack to compliment the outfit.


I like doing a little mixing and matching with creating a bracelet stack. I have really enjoyed these pink elastic bracelets from Paparazzi and liked adding some sparkle with my tennis bracelet. 


So does this outfit age me?  Personally, I don't think so, but you are free to decide for yourself. I'm comfortable and appropriate and wearing clothing that feels good and makes me happy to be seen out and about or here at home. I may not be following the latest trends, but, that's Ok by me. 

The main thing that the woman on Facebook said that really raised my hackles was that women who wear things like loose pants "don't care" and "aren't trying anymore" and have "given up."  What?  What?! I am here to tell her that I "try" every day and don't need to be in the latest trend (according to her and others) in order to look neat, tidy and clean. I have not "given up" just because I like certain articles of clothing that someone else has deemed "out of date." I mean, really!! Perhaps this woman is the greatest stylist in the world but if the clothing she picked out for me was uncomfortable on my body and colors or styles I don't like then is it worth it for me to be wearing it? Hmmm....food for thought. 

Dear readers, I hope that each of you is wearing something today that you like and that you find comfortable. Ok, on to another subject entirely. How about some daily happenings?

Daily Happenings


Lately, I've been enjoying some delicious salads like this one that I added tuna and mini tomatoes to for additional flavor. I love the flavor of tomatoes this time of year.



I went to an outdoor music practice that The Mr. was involved with and enjoyed listening to the music and talking to the other musicians there. The food that followed was pretty good, too!


I've been enjoying keeping some store bought flower arrangements going as long as possible indoors. When flowers that are spent have to be tossed I just take what is left and put in a different vase. I love how the fuschia colored carnations and the green "something" plant look in this blue and cream colored pitcher. 


And, finally, I've been enjoying rocking with Cassie whenever she slows down enough to let me hold her in the chair. Cassie isn't much of a lap cat, although she loves to be close to us in the room. So when she actually sits for a minute on us it is extra special! She told me, though, that it is time for her to make her "rounds" of the house so she needed to get down as Garden was waiting for her at the Cat Cantina! Oh well, can't argue with The Cat Detective!

What's happening in your daily life? Hope you will let me know in the comments. Love hearing from you!

Until Next Time,
Debbie

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Back Porch Happenings


Daily Life On The Back Porch



Hello everyone!  Thought I would share some pictures from our back porch as it is right now.  I love this time of the summer because the flowers that one planted back in May are really full and gorgeous at this point.  How beautiful are the colors on this lantana bloom?  


The new guinea impatiens and gold lantana are also doing incredibly well at the moment. You'll notice that the flowers are in an oblong arrangement here. We have changed that around as you will see in a moment. 


Another up-close view of the impatiens. I can't believe how well these have done this summer and that they have not been eaten by deer! Fingers crossed that the good luck continues!


The butterflies have been loving the flowers and I was fortunate enough to catch this butterfly on the gold lantana. So beautiful!


We recently purchased a fountain for our back porch. We had one just like this many years ago at our previous house and decided that we would enjoy having one for this house. After putting it together ( it is VERY heavy) we decided it was too big for the area it is in and decided to break it down into two fountains. 


So this is what part of the fountain is looking like right now. I really like this arrangement myself, but The Mr. is thinking that we may use the big clamshell as the bottom on the other parts of the fountain and put the black pump you see here in a black, round fountain liner that we bought. So, stay tuned until we make up both of our minds, LOL! I do like the flowers arranged around this fountain design, though. 


And I guess I'll just go ahead and share a couple more pics of this dress in the spirit of "What I Really Wore."  I wore this dress to my flute lesson last week. I don't think I have shown it on the blog before. It is a simple summer dress by MSK (I think). I love the mix of colors and, of course, the emphasis on blue. I have tried to wear my summer dresses more this summer and get use out of them. 


With sleeveless tops and dresses I tend to keep a sweater nearby in case of cooler temps or AC inside places. I won't even tell you how long I have had this particular sweater but I will tell you it is one of my absolute favorites! The sandals are Clark's and are very, very cushiony and comfortable. I just haven't worn sandals that much this summer, preferring to wear my closed Skechers or tennis shoes, but for this dress I put on the sandals. I found this outfit to be so comfortable that I wore it all day and even did housecleaning in this. 

I've decided that this style of dress is a favorite of mine and I have about three MSK dresses that I really, really enjoy wearing. I'll share another one with you in a future post.

So, that's the news from my back porch including a little fashion. I hope your week is off to a great start. I'll be back later in the week with more about daily life recently. See you then!

Until Next Time,
Debbie


Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Tablescape in Gold and Green

 New On The Foyer Table


Hey friends!  Thought I would share a short post showcasing a new tablescape arrangement on the foyer table. I'm using green and gold for this particular tablescape.


This ceramic planter is a new piece that you haven't seen before. I picked it up yesterday at Michael's on sale and thought it would be cute on the foyer table. So, I built the tablescape design around this piece. 


I purchased the green grass scrapbook paper at Michael's also. It fits the top of the foyer table perfectly. I thought the sunflowers would go well in the planter to add a pop of bright color. And then it was a matter of finding items that would look pretty with the planter. So, I added the pretty plant colored "R," a gold pear and a gold toned Willow Tree angel holding a cat. The colors all blend and look nice together for a late summer tablescape. 

Speaking of late summer, can you believe that next week is the last week in July? Time seems to be flying by, that's for sure! I hope you are enjoying these warm and sunny days to the fullest. I sure am trying. Hope to hear how you are spending your days in the comments. Love hearing from you!

Until Next Time,
Debbie


Thursday, July 15, 2021

To Hat Or Not To Hat and Backyard Visitors

 That Is The Question


To hat or not to hat....that is the question of the day dear readers!
I must admit, that I am never totally comfortable when I wear a hat. How about you? 



The thing is, I love how hats look on other people. I see women out taking walks wearing the cutest hats and it always inspires me to try to wear one. But somehow, I'm just not sure they are for me. I have a sister-in-law who says if you wear hats you must do it with confidence. Maybe that is my problem. I don't have "hat confidence." And then, there is the whole "hat head" issue when you take off the hat. My hair is always flat on top after I wear a hat.


I like this hat, though. It is a good size for keeping the sun out of my eyes. And the teal colored band around it adds a nice bit of color. 


There's also a little teal colored bow on the back which is cute. 


I wonder if this hat would stay on if it were windy? I once owned another hat and The Mr. and I walked around a nearby lake where it got very windy. So one day, I tied a scarf over the top of the hat and under my chin to keep it on. I got a few sympathetic smiles from people as we walked and The Mr. gave me one of "those" looks. I don't think it was my greatest moment in fashion history. I had seen other people do that very thing and they looked lovely. But alas it didn't work for me. See? I lacked hat confidence.

Perhaps I need a strap underneath to hold this hat on if it is windy. Remember when we were little girls and had the Easter hats with the elastic underneath to keep the hat on our heads? Yeah....I may need one of those. Somehow, I always end up feeling a bit like Minnie Pearl when I wear a hat. Although, I always cut off the price tag!

So, the dilemma remains. To hat or not to hat, that is the question. What do you think? Do you hat? Do you have hat confidence? Be sure to let me know in the comments, OK? 

*****************************************************

And now something completely different and much more important than my silly thoughts about hats....it's time for more backyard visitors! A few days ago, The Mr. and I were returning home when we looked up from our car and saw a visitor on our back porch taking a nap.


A sleepy black bear had decided our porch was warm and cozy and the perfect spot for an afternoon nap! Said bear stayed for a very long time allowing us to take lots of photos from the safety of our kitchen. 


After awhile, the bear had finished his nap and awoke to do some stretching, some scratching and some bear yoga before lumbering off into our woods. The Mr. got a great video of him waking up. Enjoy!




Until Next Time,
Debbie



Sunday, July 11, 2021

What I Really Wore

 Truth Telling With Fashion


Hey everyone!  I don't know about you, but sometimes I look at what fashion icons are sharing online and I think to myself, "Is that what they really wore to ____?" It just seems far fetched that they would really wear certain things because it just didn't look comfortable. So today, I'm sharing what I really wore when The Mr. and I went out to lunch and to kick around for a bit. 


As you look at this outfit I feel I can hear you saying, "Did she really wear that outfit to lunch with tennis shoes on?"  Yep, I really did.  I was actually wearing a pair of Skechers with this outfit around the house but when we got ready to leave I decided to change shoes to these. I just never really know when The Mr. and I go out if we will end up walking somewhere or just eating and cruising around so I like to be prepared in case there is a lot of walking. So, that's the reason for the tennis shoes. Plus our restaurant choices are never of the 5 Star variety. Usually, places like Subway or Jersey Mike's. So, dressing up to the hilt is not necessary. I wish I were able to wear cute high heeled shoes around and feel comfortable in them but those days are gone, I'm afraid! I'm keeping it real here, people! And while Skechers would have been just fine for walking around stores they are not what I would wear on the trail had we ended up on one. 


I actually had chosen a totally different top to wear with these white capris when I got dressed this morning. But then, I felt too warm and went back for a sleeveless hot pink top. Then, I felt like I needed just a little something on my arms as the house was a tad cool so I opted for this hot pink duster to wear over the hot pink top. I wouldn't normally have put these two items together but I sure am glad I did. I think they are a perfect match! 


And here's a little trick I've been using whenever I wear tops that are a little bit wider necked like this one is and I don't want the top to accidentally flop forward and show too much skin. I choose a longer necklace and wear it. The necklace holds the top against me and works like a charm! Of course, the duster holds the top against me, as well, but if I took off the duster the necklace would come in handy!

I guess the point of today's post is to share that I think it's perfectly fine to wear items out that feel good and comfortable even if it seems that there is a less dressy item being worn with the outfit. I think we all probably have clothing that we really like but we choose not to wear because we don't have the "right" shoes or jacket or whatever to wear with that particular item. Perhaps we need to just go ahead and wear it and not worry about the rest. It's like saving the fancy dishes for "good" and then never using them because the right occasion never happens. Same with our clothes. It's best to wear and enjoy what we own and not worry about extraneous things like occasions or the right shoes, etc. 

What do you think about all of this? Are you OK mixing less dressy items with outfits? Do you wear tennis shoes with dressier pants and/or tops? Are you saving the dishes for "good?" Be sure to leave a comment and let me know your thoughts. I enjoy hearing from you!

Until Next Time,
Debbie

Thursday, July 8, 2021

Summer Days Are Fleeting

 Making The Most Of Summer


Summer days are fleeting, my dear readers, so I hope that you are enjoying every moment of every day. I certainly have been trying to soak up all the sunshine, flowers and friendships that are part of fun summer days. 


Yesterday, my friend, Natalie, and I enjoyed just such a fun summer day together at The North Carolina Arboretum. We soaked in all the sunshine, flowers and sculptures at the Arboretum while The Mr. and Natalie's husband, Rex, enjoyed a hike off of the Blue Ridge Parkway. The four of us have been friends for many, many years but haven't been able to spend time together for quite awhile. It has been lovely to re-connect and catch up this week. Rex and Natalie are also enjoying the sites while staying in Lake Lure. Remember my post on Lake Lure? Be sure to check it out if you missed it. 


The flowers were just gorgeous and we snapped many photos as we walked and chatted. This is the summer quilt garden and I love the mix of yellow with lavender and purple. So very pretty!


I wish I were as gifted as the folks who plant the arboretum flowers in such unique ways such as this outcrop of rocks. 


The Arboretum also has unique plants such as a collection of Bonsai trees that are carefully tended by the staff. 


Not much wildlife was seen although we did spy a couple of lizards sunning on a rock. The Mr. and I have actually seen this type of lizard around our house. Don't know the exact type to name this lizard properly. We call the one at our house, "Leo the Lizard," so perhaps this is Leo's cousin. 


Of course, the arboretum always has some type of fun art or sculpture displays and this metal bird was a great addition to the greenery.  There is also a wonderful nature photography exhibit inside The Baker Center which we enjoyed. No photos were allowed of that exhibit, however. 


Meanwhile, the guys were enjoying a good hike together at Big Butt Trail.  Yep, that's the name of the trail. The elevation on this trail got up to 5961 feet and is near Mt. Mitchell.


There were gorgeous views along the trail.  It was cloudy with big vistas. 


And some beautiful berries and greenery along the way. 



Summer is such a wonderful time for soaking up all of the goodness of flowers, friendship, hiking, awesome views and more! I plan to enjoy every moment. How about you? 

Be sure to leave a comment and let me know how you are enjoying summer days. Be sure to enjoy every moment, Ok? 

Until Next Time,
Debbie

*Photography by Bill and Debbie Ross