Thursday, August 11, 2022

What Lies Behind A Smile


Hello friends. I took these pictures a few days ago on my sister's driveway in WV. When I took the pics, I was intending to share how to create an outfit using a basic piece like this sleeveless top with a shirt over it. 

I love this style shirt by ExOfficio and I just ordered this one in white from Poshmark. I already own a similar style in light blue and orange and wear them so often. I think this style top and shirt over a pair of favorite capris is just the classic summer look for me. I received many compliments on this outfit and enjoyed the comfort of wearing this style.

So yes, the original purpose of this post was to write about this classic summer style and to encourage you to look in your own closets for what you consider your own classic summer style. 

But then, I looked closely at my pictures. And at my smiling face. And how inside I feel like doing anything else but smiling. My oldest sister is very ill and my other sisters and I are doing our very best to help her. And I just don't know what the future holds. 

How often in this life do we present smiling faces to the world around us? And yet our hearts aren't smiling. It seems like our culture wants us to do this. To smile. No matter what. 

It's just like when we say, "Hello, how are you?" to people we meet and we don't really expect a response. I've often wondered what someone might do if I truly told them how I was feeling. 

Can you relate? 

And yes, prayers, prayers and more prayers for "S" and my family would be appreciated.

Until Next Time,

Monday, August 8, 2022

Saturday Scriptures on Monday

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

Collosians 3:12

Hello friends. You may have noticed that I missed Saturday's devotional post. I was traveling once again to help with my family and, to be honest, it slipped my mind. I did bring my computer with me on this trip, however, so Saturday Scriptures is coming to you on Monday. 

You know, as ladies, most of us like to go through several steps when we get dressed. We put on our clothes, add jewelry and other accessories, put on our makeup and check in the mirror throughout this process to make sure that everything looks just so. It's important to us that clothing ourselves with garments presents us to the world in the best possible light. 

But, the verse from Collosians reminds us that there is a more important way that we need to clothe ourselves. And that is with "spiritual clothing." Adding the important "accessories" of compassion, kindness, gentleness, humility and patience is very important in how we, as Christians, present ourselves to the world. 

For me, patience is always a challenging article of "spiritual clothing" for me to practice. I often fall short of showing enough patience to others and to myself. 

Which of these "accessories" challenges you the most? 

Blessings and Peace,

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

My 7th Blog Anniversary

 My How Time Does Fly!

Hey friends!  I'm afraid I've let a few days go by without acknowledging and celebrating the 7th anniversary of my blog! So today I want to do just that. It is really, really hard for me to believe that seven years have passed since I first sat down and shakily pulled up Blogger to see if I could figure out how to even design a blog let alone write a post. You can see my first timid attempt here if you are interested. The post was short, sweet and to the point! If you have been a long time reader you will also notice how I have changed over the years. The picture collage above shows the very first picture I posted and the second, of course, is how I look today. Since I first posted on July 30, 2015 I have retired and learned to embrace the changes that come from retirement and adjusting to a new routine and schedule. I enjoy more freedom to choose how my days are shaped now than I did when I first started blogging. However, that doesn't mean that I have a lot of "empty" time. I have learned that "nature abhors a vacuum" and my time quickly has become filled with church work, spending time with The Mr. (who is also now retired), doing things around our home, musical endeavors, tutoring and traveling to see and help out with older members of my family. That especially has taken on new significance in the last few years. 

When I first started blogging, I tried to post at least three times per week. That has lessened over the years and now I post 1-2 times per week. Writing devotionals has been a mainstay of my blog since the beginning and I have returned to "Saturday Scriptures" for the summer months. I will decide when September comes whether I want to continue with this each Saturday. 

My posts are quite eclectic in my opinion. One may be about fashion the next may be about books, a tablescape or vignette, a devotional, or a mish-mash of all of the above! I guess that I write posts that I would enjoy reading. I enjoy learning about my favorite blogger's homes and pastimes and so I try to include all of that in my own posts! Even my two cats, Cassie and Garden, get in on the act when they "take over" the blog and write posts. They are creative little felines who like to share their adventures around the house as only they can share! 

I was looking back at my reader numbers from the start of the blog to now and, to be honest, they are rather discouraging. The numbers just aren't as big as they were at first. I attribute this to several factors. I think blogging as a whole has diminished and with the demise of blogs the readers have gone bye-bye as well. Instagram and Tik-Tok are the new "flavors of the month" and have taken the place of many blogs and I find that very sad. There also used to be lots of "link-parties" to link to and get new readers and those, too, have diminished and stopped. There are still link parties out there but I find that my interest in linking has also diminished. There are "rules" to join these parties which include reading and responding to other bloggers and sometimes I just don't have the time, energy or the interest in doing this. So, I plod along doing the best I can with my own little space in the blogosphere. I also made the mistake, which I truly regret, of reverting my blog back to blogspot for awhile and giving up my original domain name, Debbie This And That. In doing so, I lost a whole lot of readers that I never regained. Oh well. We live and learn, right?! The good news is that I have a wonderful group of faithful readers who join me in "styling life" and for that I am so very grateful!

Whenever a blog anniversary rolls around I always like to ask my readers to chime in with what they like to read/see on the blog and what I haven't included that would be of interest to them. So, here's your chance to let me know. Even if you read the blog and don't ever comment (I do that too with blogs I read) I would really appreciate a comment this time. It helps me to know that people do appreciate the time I put into blogging. I won't lie. It's been a challenge this past year to come up with ideas that I feel offer something "fresh." I mean, how many times do people want to read about what I put on my foyer table or how I set my table or what new dress I just got? I worry that my content is becoming boring or obsolete. I don't have new outfits to share each post. I made a definite decision long ago not to monetize my blog. I don't like reading blogs that have ads popping up while I am trying to read. It annoys me, so I don't want to do that to other people. I also don't invite or pay others to write posts for me. This blog is "all me" and that's the way I like it! I hope you do too. Thanks for giving your precious time to reading Debbie Styles Life. I truly appreciate YOU!

Until Next Time,
Debbie  (aka...Debbie This and That, Debbie Styles Life 😊)