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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

What To Wear New Years Eve


It was raining when I decided to get out of bed this morning and has not stopped through putting on my makeup, having a cup of Creme Brulee home made coffee, making my lunch for work tomorrow, and taking photos to see if I remembered how.   All I have done is put on about 5 different outfits, took about what felt like a hundred pics and I am exhausted.  I watched the Lakers win a ball game with my favorite player Kobe inspiring as ever yet I can barely keep my eyes open at 5pm now.  No ballet class for two days and I am a mush ball.   It must be the grayest rainiest  Christmas Day of all time that is making me feel like I am in a deep dark cave and all I want to do is hibernate. 

I did forget how to transfer my photos from my camera so I did wait too long.  Thank heaven Google manages to answer my questions and I came up with only one photo I feel like posting.  I have discovered when taking photos I have nothing to wear for New Years Eve.  I am in charge of games and we are going to be playing outdoor games indoors so a LBD with spikes is not a good choice even if I owned them.  I am picturing a chiffon sleeveless cream dress I spotted at H & M with some kind of red or green cotton tee over the top and some fancy boots.

The story behind the granny boots I have on in this picture today are forty years old.  They are Naturalizers and orignially dark brown.  One Halloween I decided to spray them with Design Master Gold metallic spray paint good to spray baskets, ceramics, wood, and so much more.  When I wore them as a costume I received so many compliments I decided they were not just for Halloween I could wear them all of the time.  Then I wanted them Silver and over the years decided to go back to Gold again.  When I saw the Bronze color I thought that would be the best color of all for granny boots.  Forty years old and still trekkin'.  See how things can get better with age... and a little bit of paint.  





Wednesday, December 19, 2012

How Action Speaks Louder Than Words

Growing up I remember my mother telling me I was not to play with certain kinds of kids that used bad language.  When I raised my children I did not want them to play with certain kids I considered a bad influence.  The ones who were always getting in trouble.  I wondered why being around the "wrong kind" is so powerful and being with so called good kids is not as influential?.  Or is it?

Yes I am a hundred years old and this was one of my favorite movies I went to see over and over and over.  I bought the album and learned all of the songs by heart and put up drapes in my basement with folding chairs for the neighbor kids to come over and watch me perform.  Okay I bribed them with graham crackers and grape juice if they came over so they did.

I just heard a movie director interviewed tonight ask, "where is the data on musicals and how those affect us?  Do the happy go lucky Mary Poppin type movies create a good world like they are trying to say violent movies creates a violent one?"   He of course did not think so.  In my personal experience when I see or hear violence of any kind I immediately turn it off because if I do not I FEEL sick.  When I see something beautiful and life giving I FEEL inspired, and uplifted.   Where is the data on this?   Depending upon who puts the money behind gathering the data will be the final verdict.  Yes that means you NRA!!!!

I made my sister be part of my home made musicals.  When she drowned she was ten and I was sixteen.   We were riding in the hearse to the funeral parlor looking out the window when my father said, "It feels like the whole world should stop but everyone is going about their business like everything is normal."  Since then I have come to know the meaning of a time to grieve and a time to dance for each one of us in our own way in our own time.


Friday, December 14, 2012

What Can We Stand For In America?

Last Tuesday I was getting ready to leave for ballet class and heard on the news a shooting had happened at the Clackamas Towne Center Mall about twenty minutes away from where I live.   America likes to think the "terrorists" are ...over there somewhere.....and love our violent movies, video games, music,  magazines, books, and television.

Today I read on a blog that teaches writing...."If you don't torture yourself with hardship, and suffering you are torturing readers with boredom."  What is this fascination?  I listen to OPB radio when in my car.  I only drive for ten minutes at a time.  Many times I have to turn the radio off because the stories are all too gruesome to be of any value to me and my life.  Just the other day someone was telling a reporter "her sister was being stabbed in the throat...."  I know the head in the sand expression but that is just one of many stories now that has taken over the airwaves of National Public Broadcasting supposedly the ONLY intellectual media left alive.

Now today the morning news comes across my computer screen about the mass murder of children and teachers at a grade school in Connecticut.  Is this going to be just another day in America?   What do we stand for?  If we all need guns in our homes to protect ourselves who is the enemy?   My father had guns and loved to shoot.  He took me shooting once and I hated it.  He would shoot beer cans for sport and go hunting for deer and moose.  One year he finally saw a deer, shot it, brought it home to put in our freezer and we ate venison for many dinners.  He never went hunting again.  The thrill was gone.  My father was the most loving, mellow man I have ever known and he loved his guns.  So I don't get it.
 
Is there another way to live?  Is it possible to begin with the hearts and minds of our own self?  If one really chooses violence as a form of entertainment is it going to creep into real life?  Does real life mimic our environment?  Is there a way to love our self and then each other or does the gun come first then lets think about love.  Do you really have to kill another human being in order to protect yourself?  Do you know anyone mentally ill?  If you think someone is "different"  do you avoid them?  What else can you do?

There is no such thing as being able to control anything let alone guns.  What made the mother and kindergarten teacher want those guns?  Did she know how to use them to protect herself?  Where did she go to learn how to use them?  Or were they for her children to learn how to use in order to protect her?  If guns are so useful to protect each other what is the problem?  Are many more humans in America and else where alive today because we have guns to protect us?  This is what we need to decide?  I wager people that own guns own them because they like them and think they are fun but it sounds better to think and say they are for some kind of protection. 

But here come another round of arguments. "Its not the guns it is the mental illness.  It is not mental illness it is bad parenting and all the rest of it".  The chatter will continue for weeks and slowly dies.  I agree with Michael Moore and what he said,   "Is it too soon to talk about gun control in America?  No, it's too late."

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

How Did You Get That Look

It is 9:30pm on a dark and rainy night in Portland.  Just watched the Rhajneeshpuram special on OPB. I remember when this was taking place in the 1980's and 90's in Oregon and I did not know what to believe.  Since then I have read many conflicting stories about what took place during that time.  One of the best books I have ever read is called My Life In Orange written by Tim Guest who spent his childhood in the commune.  It is so well written I felt like I was right there with him.
The commune came into being a few years after what happened in Jonestown and mostly fear based because of it being labeled a cult.  The story has so many twists and turns it is hard to believe it all began in a sleepy little town in Oregon called Antelope.

Now on to the look of a "smokey eye".  Tomorrow a few of us at work have decided to come with our interpretation of a smokey eye.  I have been experimenting with it over the months and sometimes think it looks good and other times think maybe not?  Have you tried it?  Do you like it?  I remember my father telling me NOT to compare myself to the pictures in the fashion magazines I would bring home.  He said those pictures were not real and that was in the 1950's way before Photoshop and all the rest of what we have now with the Botox etc.

Well, here goes....tomorrow I am going to try for one of these two looks to wear to work.  I only have drugstore makeup to work with.  Yeah, I will blame it on that.


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

How To Be Flexible For Life

Tis' the Season to question everything about life.  Or maybe that's just me.  I was listening to the Director of the film Anna Karenina on NPR and it set my mind in wonder.  I know it is the time of year where traditions are celebrated and the news has various segments of the population arguing about whose celebrations are valid and true and which ones are sacrilegious but no one seems to question where their particular belief systems come from?   I never did either until I attended Marylhurst College in the Pastoral Ministries Degree program.  When I would take part in class discussions the instructor would say to me, "Thank you for your opinion".  I was taken aback.  I thought hey it is not my opinion it is in the Bible.

By the time I graduated with a Social Science degree with an emphasis in Physical Education my eyes were much wider and my mind much more open and flexible.  I learned to appreciate the philosophy  to "question everything".  So what does this have to do with Anna Karenina?  I remember reading the book a couple times and related to her character.
The director Joe Wright said in Russia in the 17th century their culture did not know if they wanted to be East or West and decided they would take on he French language and became very flamboyant and showy.  Their ballrooms had floor to ceiling mirrors on all four walls.  Ha...I just have one wall in my apartment all mirror.   It came to mind in the performance world especially in dance the Russians are known for being the most dramatic and expressive in the roles they take on.   If you ever watch the Olympics ice skating it is the Russians that shine in their characterization.  Then came to me the expression "All the world's a stage" when I heard the director give reference that maybe some times we stay too long in a role.

That led me to think about General Petraeus and his role.  Did he screw up royally or is he an example of one staying too long in a role when maybe his married role was over?  Then of course I thought of my own two divorces and many other relationships and roles and did it have anything to do with too long or not long enough?  And what signs do we get when we have stayed too long in a role.?   Are  some of us assigned many different roles when we enter this world?  Do we have free will to change them?   Or is it all fate?

Penelope Trunk a blogger writes about instead of going for a "happy life" how about choosing to go for an "interesting life"?  This time of year effects my sensibilities and makes me melancholy when I least expect it.  It is usually a  Christmas song heard in the background while shopping that  can set me off with emotions I thought were behind me.   I call myself the "lone ranger" but that is only one role I play.  I am a mother, co-worker, friend, dancer, student, blogger, and more.  I find my task is not to get stuck in one way of living.  That I need to let my emotions flow in their own way in their own time and just be aware and not be afraid to feel the feelings that arise.  Then I heard, "The body is not stiff the mind is."  Tis the season to be flexible.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

A New Way To Live

It looks like from my window the whole world is walking their dogs today.  A few runners and walkers like me without a dog because it is a storybook Thanksgiving day here in our city of Portland.  Sunshine, no wind, and the tress are striking in all their finest colors of every shade of reds and golds imaginable.  What a treat for my eyes.  I heard last night that eighty percent of the information we receive comes through our eyes.  My eyes are having a feast today instead of my stomach.
 My sons and daughters do not live here so my preference is to celebrate Thanksgiving Day with myself..   I went for a long long walk along the mighty Willamette River with nature surrounding me nourishing my soul and I do not concern myself with food.  I like to feed my other senses on this day.

I also love to learn new things luckily because my cell phone was stolen yesterday from my car.  Yes in broad daylight at three in the afternoon in a packed parking lot at a huge chain grocery store.  Yes I know better than to leave anything that looks of value where it can be seen.  I forgot.  My seven year old discontinued style cell phone and my paper address book was in the bag.   No use to anyone but they took it anyway because the bag looked like a purse.  Also an old headset I use at work, a lipstick, and a pair of fingerless gloves.  I am sure they just threw it away when they discovered it was a purse with no goodies but where would they throw it? 

Recently I shopped for phones to have a back up in case anything happened to mine.  They all looked wrong and the clerks were busy so decided it was not the right time.  Okay two weeks later and I have no choice I have to go through the process of finding a phone at AT & T no excuses and hope for the best.  I told myself I was not going to make it an ordeal I was going to go with no expectations just an open mind and see what happens.

When I entered the store a fun looking clerk who looked exactly like my youngest son smiled and said, "How can I help you today?"  I knew I was in good hands.  I now own a Motorola Atrix 4GLTE that I have no idea how to use.  It has $500. 00 worth of features on it and all I know at this point is how to make and answer a call and send a text.  I no longer have to type the text because I just speak what I want to say and it does the texting for me.  It is also supposed to have one of the best cameras ever.  We shall see.

Seriously I do not need this souped up phone for the simple way I want to use it but the new way to live is on the low end, or high end.  No longer a middle choice.   Just like the middle class?  Maybe but so what?  Roll with it.  Today walking the river with a feeling of gratitude I was thankful for the love that surrounds me.  And I discovered a new way to live.  In  ballet class a few nights ago my teacher Eric gave a visual of the acorn.
He said to feel as though you have an acorn in your center that bursts in all four directions and dance from that place.  Today walking the river I could feel the acorn image as a real sensation in my center that created an energy that gave me a feeling of new life.  I can feel this sensation standing in line at the grocery store, walking from here to there, shopping at the mall, whenever I say "acorn".  A new way to live, how fun is that?
Will Brenner Photo



Thursday, November 15, 2012

Are You Running On Social Media

What have you been up to?  If the answer is, "nothing" the next question is, "Are you okay?"  We are a culture of "doers" and if you are not on that merry-go-round with hundreds or thousands of "followers"  then you may be a monk,  a zen Buddhist, one who has been diagnosed as psychologically ill, or a lone ranger like myself. 
Personality Tests
The Myers Briggs Personality Tests I studied in college placed me as an INFP.  Only one percent of the population preference type.  It was one of the most freeing experiences of my life to discover that I was not a loser I was just different.  These tests are quite fascinating and have taught me many lessons over the years.  The premise is as I understand it we cannot understand each other but we can learn to appreciate each other.
  
Can one be actively participating in this world and not be a runner?  Watching marathons one would wonder but even though it seems like everyone is doing it there are many who don't.  What about "social media"?  Why is everyone so addicted to their I-phones?  Instead of trying to figure out why the world operates as it does, or my country, or my workplace, or my family, or my friends, I have learned it is my task to understand myself.  It seems I am always on a mission.  I place all kinds of rules and idealistic expectations on myself and keep on myself until I get an epiphany and hear,  "Hey you...give yourself some slack".  That voice came to me this weekend and I just smiled with an "AHA".


After ballet class last night I was talking to a fellow dancer and she told me because of her situation she can only take 2 ballet classes a week but needs to keep in shape so she runs but she hates it but does not hate it as much as she hates the gym.  Whoa.  Yes I can relate.  I told her I even subscribe to "Runners World" magazine not because I run because I hate to run but because the stories are so inspiring by people who do.  I am in awe of how or why they think running is a healthy adventure.   Yet my commitment to studying ballet feels healthy and wonder how I would ever stay fit without the personal challenge.

When starting this blog as a creative outlet about a year ago I have gathered mass information about "How To Be A Successful Blogger" and it continues to overwhelm me.  All of the social media that is involved with the "followers" and the "like me" buttons let alone the "tweets" just makes me dizzy.   When my "AHA" moment came last weekend it was while thinking about how I can fit in to all this social mania?   I have decided to have my own little experiment and... respond to the challenges of blogging but not be held by it. 


 

Thursday, November 8, 2012

One Way To Be A Happy Camper

 I am a very happy camper.  And I don't even like to camp.

  It is Thursday eve 5pm post election... probably 45 degrees outside and I am inside at my computer in my neon pink robe, blue green long sleeve thermal tee, a long pink cotton tee underneath, black yoga pants, purple thermal socks and I am freezing.  What if I really was camping?  Or without heat?  My heart goes out to those in the East that need our help.   So much I have to feel thankful for.  I have a heater in every room in my apartment, a good job to go to in the morning, I am ready to cook some organic beef patties for dinner with a kale salad and hot cocoa for dessert while looking forward to watching Project Runway All Stars.  Please, can I get anymore American than that?
Downtown Portland 
 The truth is I am not patriotic. I prefer a global view.  I was born in the USA but do not pledge my allegiance to any person place or thing.  I am grateful for where I live and heard my parents and others call Oregon "Gods Country".  I think because of all our scenic variety of natural environments in every direction one may travel here.  We have the beaches, high snow capped mountain ranges, and dessert all within hours of each other.  Then I read a blogger called My Yoga Blog from Munich, Germany visited here last week and called Portland the New India.  She is a world traveler and could not get over how many homeless people we have on the streets of our downtown.  I had no idea it was that many more than other cities.   Being a happy camper is not being homeless that is for sure.  I do not know how they manage.

What I care about is what can happen now.  I am ready to be of service.


 






Thursday, November 1, 2012

One Step In Front Of The Other



The sun sank, the rains came it is dark and I picture myself being the one in this photo that just keeps running.  An athlete in training mentality  I go through all the motions of getting to work on time, and getting to every ballet class with no excuses yet their is a blahness to it.  I know it is easy to blame everything on the weather and I do feel I am a product of my environment and am affected by the elements.  I had a productive day at work today, lots of fun with my colleagues all my loved ones including myself happy and healthy so what is wrong?

I know daily practice is needed to grow in all areas of my life and here I am writing until inspiration comes.  What if this was my livelihood?  Now I know what writers block feels like and how scary that would be if I was an author.  There must be some way to overcome?

  So here I am Friday night 9pm.... Breathing.....breathing.....breathing.....watching  Kobe play Laker ball and how he wills himself to win a game where all his team is as sluggish as I am.  Sometimes watching others excel at what they do can be inspiring.  What is going on with me?    Just blah.  Mind feels blank for about a week now.  I will just have to roll with it.  The more I try to snap out of it or fight it or pretend it is not happening is not productive.
 
For now I will fix a cup of hot cocoa, set my alarm for  ballet class in the morning...just one step at a time...at a time...



Thursday, October 25, 2012

How Can You Compare The Beauty Of A Tree


Quite shocking.  I walked into my apartment when I got home from work to discover the huge red maple tree in front of my picture window GONE.  It had been chopped down and only a stump remains.  Fifteen years ago when I moved in I had a full view of Mt. Hood.  If you have ever seen Mt. Hood the beauty and splendor of the mountain is like no other and from my apartment window some times it would loom so large it felt as though I could reach out and touch it.  The owner of the apartment at the time kept the trees well manicured and trimmed each year.  When he sold the apartments ten years ago the new owners let the trees go wild.

 My view of Mt. Hood slowly disappeared over the years.  Except in Winter when some trees lose their leaves I get a glimpse.  About a year ago I told the owners I wanted the tree in front of my window PRUNED if possible because it had grown to cover my deck as well.  They told me they would look into it. All last winter and through the spring and summer  I thought they had forgotten all about it.  I had an affinity for the tree so I told myself that I had made my wishes known and to leave it be.   Whoa!!!  Can you imagine?   I had no idea they were going to completely chop it down.   I feel the loss of my friend the red maple that gave me the gift of pure beauty  peace, and joy that only a tree can give.
 I do not have a before picture with the tree in front of my window but this is my view with it chopped down today.   Mt Hood is directly behind the trees on the right.

I am sitting here typing now adjusting to my friend being gone.  Watching it slowly get dark and actually liking the view now.  It is quite active and yet because I sit up high off the street I feel it is my little window to the outside world.  When the tree was here I felt protected yet closed in.  Now I feel open and I like it.  Woody Allen said the reason he likes living in New York...  " I never go out.....I just like to know everything is right there should I ever want to."    For me I am such a hermit that I like to see activity and life going on outside around me, the traffic,  the runners, walkers, people going to and from work  and know they are there even if I do not go out to join them.
The view from my window tonight



















Friday, October 19, 2012

How Does Marketing Affect You

Did you see the movie "The Candidate" with Robert Redford?.  It is a must see.  I have seen most all of his movies.  For me he is the greatest actor for his "subtleties".   I adore a glance, an expression. a silence, that speaks volumes.  I think Redford is a master at that.  So much harder to deliver than dialogue because it has to be honest and come from deep within you to be believable. 
Let's talk about believable.  Are you going to watch the third Presidential debate?  It is all about the marketing.  First look at the tie.  Red is more powerful than blue I have heard and a brown suit is never a good idea.  The smiles, the laugh, the inflection of indignation all have to be choreographed to come across as natural when in fact is anything but.  Obama realized that in his first debate when he came out as himself only to realize when one is oneself the television cameras project it as being half asleep.  Is this because we are conditioned by watching  UNREALITY shows that give us constants fighting , bickering, actual physical fighting sometimes?   Our dramas, sitcoms  news,  have to entertain us and of course our Presidential debates.

Today it is all about the Marketing.  If you do not know how to be an Oprah, Kris Jenner or a Martha Stewart type then forget about what it is you want to do.  The show the Shark Tank is a lesson in Marketing 101 without having to sign up for a class.  Look at Barbara Corcoran.
Just last night she called herself a "marketing genius".  She was dressed exactly like this picture and spoke those words and she IS the real deal.  She seems to have the number one skill in America,  The President of the United States is elected by who has the most money to hire the best PR/Marketing available.

Tory Burch a well known fashion designer never went to design school.  Her degrees and career experience is in PR and Marketing and marrying a billionaire.  I am not a fan of her fashion but on a news interview she said $425 for a dress is reasonable.  Well not in my world.  But I did splurge big time on a new bag today.  I saw it 3 weeks ago prominently displayed/marketed on a table at Nordstrom.  It caught my eye then and again the following week and again today.  But this was more subtle.  It was not a good deal.  It also was not someone giving me any of the marketing last chance, coupons, points, etc. It was just a simple transaction of an item catching my eye,  picking it up, holding it, looking in different mirrors over and over again then leaving it alone.  A week later after looking at many alternatives this bag was calling my name.
When you are purchasing items for yourself are you aware of the marketing behind it or do you turn a deaf ear and just go for what you want?  It seems now one has to join or become a member to get a discount or credits.  I like to think I have free will to shop at a store because I want to not because I have a reward card. 



Friday, October 12, 2012

How Do I?

If only I had a computer guru around the house.  Saying "if only" is supposed to be counter-productive so I will move on.

I have a question I hope someone could answer regarding leaving comments on my blog.  When I leave comments on most blogs it leaves my photo ID and blog name that when clicked on connects directly to my own blog.  When someone leaves a comment on MY blog it only leaves a standard icon and a name but when the name is clicked on it does not connect to anything.

My question:  Is that because I have DISQUS on my blog?  When I went to Disqus.com to ask how to delete my account they have this message on their website..."NOTE:  Deletions are temporarily disabled.  Sorry."

Any feedback or direction to where I could go for help regarding this matter would be wonderful. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

One Artists Evolution With A Crochet Hook

After work today I took a beautiful Fall late afternoon walk along the river.  The sun was shining through a soft 4PM haze with  all the rich colors of orange, amber, gold, and dark wines surrounding me with a feeling of health and well being  that only my nature walk can give me.  Then home to watch the VP Presidential debate and I notice I am getting anxious, I cannot sit still, I wonder why I subject myself to this media?   Within the hour I realize all my life energy has drained away.

  I flipped the channel and came upon Oregon Artbeat on OPB.  Like magic I was smiling and then even spellbound.    The artist that made me come back to a feeling of pure JOY with her story is Jo Hamilton.  I Googled her and if you want a real treat please do it too.

Here is how I remember the story.  She started to crochet at age six with her Grandmother teaching
 her how to make a Granny Square.  Jo says, "If you can make a Granny Square you can crochet just about anything".  I am sure that does not apply to me but who cares.  This is about Jo,  She is AMAZING!!!  She was working in a restaurant here in Portland, Oregon and decided to crochet a scene of this whole entire city with bridges and rivers and all.  Yes she did.  Her co-workers teased her about all her crocheting and she told them she could crochet "them".   And so she did.  She started crocheting portraits of her co-workers.   This to me is soooo heartwarming.  Taking a simple craft that your Grandmother teaches you and turn it into a life long artistic endeavor that you love and who knows where it will continue to evolve???

My mother tried to teach me to crochet but it did not hold my interest.  If you like to or even if you do not I would encourage you to Google Jo Hamilton crochet artist and it will lead you to a website that allows you to see many more of her real life portraits that she creates beginning with the eyes. 
Google image Jo Hamilton Design Boom web site

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Beware What You Are Ready To Pay

How much are you willing to pay for  Chanel  eyeglasses?  More than for Coach right?  What if you knew they were both made by the  exact same company?  The only difference is for the Chanel eye wear they manufacture the Chanel logo on them and for some others put the Coach logo on them.  But they are all manufactured by the same company.
Google image Chanel sunglasses
Google image for Coach sunglassesAdd caption
I just watched a segment on the magazine show called 60 Minutes and a company called Luxottica is manufacturing all the major eye glasses.  Lucky I do not care a thing about logos.  The story said who cares if all American brands are designed by Italians?   It is all the same.  If we are willing to pay $200.00 for a $30.00 item then that is what we will pay.  Oh and Luxottica also owns an insurance company that will insure your eye problems and sell you the exams you need plus the lenses.  Oh please help me.  This is going on more than we know.

Let's talk about shoes.  It is all just an illusion of choice.  The same company is manufacturing our shoes.  What if you prefer Chanel shoes?
Google image Chanel shoes
Or maybe you have a special affinity towards Coach?
Google image Coach shoes
The same manufacturer will be producing the shoes and they will be worth what people are ready to pay for them.  Think about it.  When people say you are only paying for the label we all now know it is true.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

When In Doubt, Dance

Once again I am what is called eligible for unemployment.  One week ago we completed our research projects and now I am in a waiting period for more work.  When this happens I have learned over the years to relax and enjoy the ride instead of panic as before.  So last Friday I went shopping, on the weekend I went to ballet classes and starting this week I just did the yoga thing and took one day at a time to live in the moment.  If I did not have the EXTREME BALLET (for me) class at Bodyvox to look forward to each evening I may be climbing the walls with needing more action.  These advanced classes are the most challenging activity I have ever done.
Google Photo of Bodyvox the ballet studio

Never thinking of myself as a Type A Personality  by today day four of not having to set my alarm and get up to go to work I start making my own work plans.  I thought it was going to be another very windy Fall day so I made a commitment to clean my apartment thoroughly.  That means being on my hands and knees a lot.  I threw open the doors and windows because it turned out to be a fabulous sunshiny day with little wind, I put on the CD by Renee Olstead  at full volume and danced as I cleaned.....yes just like in some old fashioned musicals.

My life feels like a musical now that I think about it.   Mostly fluff with very little dialogue and little storyline.







Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Where Did You Get Those Boots

The other day one of the sellers on the television home shopping networks said the reason shoes and boots are so expensive is  because of Sex And The City.  That manufacturers figured out how much we love our shoes so they can charge us way more than ever before.  Since boots are my weakness and no matter how many I own my eyes are always drawn to the shoe department.  Luckily the more expensive the boots get the harder it is for me to find a pair worth buying.
Jeffrey Campbell Black Studded Leather 

 
My number one priority when I choose a boot is comfort.  These are not it.  This style is available at all the high end department stores.  If one does not go clubbing where would one wear these?  Art exhibit events?  But then again I need more than comfort.  My other priority is some kind of style and a heel or wedge at least 3 inches high.
These are available in every rainbow color and obviously will dress up a pair of ripped skinny jeans and a tee from Guess.  But not for me.

Guess opened a new outlet at one of the shopping malls here and they have far more signage on their clothing than ever   This store is crammed full of items that have their signage all over it and whatever do they do with all of it that does not sell?   The only thing I can think of is they give it to some charity that sends it to a third world country where they tear it all up into rags to make huts out of and to wrap themselves in for warmth.  If you go to the Guess online store you will only see a few items with GUESS written on it but in the stores it is full of it.  Does that mean even they are embarrassed to have that much signage on their clothing?  They have been doing it for years now so it is paying off somehow.

Now to prove there is no accounting for taste I will show you a tee shirt I bought this weekend at the mall.  I found it at Express another store that likes to put signage on their tees.   This photo would not attract me to this tee at all but when I put it on because it is an asymetrical tunic it has an interesting look and would go great with those Jeffrey Campbell boots and leather leggings.  No, I am not doing that!!!!!!









Friday, September 21, 2012

Who Are You Wearing

Tomorrow I will be going to a morning ballet class and shopping at the Mall in the afternoon.  Each store is so predictable but at least I can feel the fabric and try on the fit to see if the price is any where near worth it.  What is really getting predictable is the way every fashion item from clothes, to make-up, accessories and perfume has a celebrity name attached to it.

The items of clothing I see online just do not fit into my personal lifestyle.  This item is lovely but does not translate to any of my activities.
Google photo NYFW 
Google photo image NYFW
 Nor is this item relevant in any way to an office job, ballet class, chores, Starbucks.
Giulliana Rancic on HSN

Soon it may be impossible to find anything in the fashion world for sale without a famous name attached to it.  The same people you see in your living room on your favorite shows will also be hanging in your closet, on your face, and your favorite scent.

The place where you will find your favorite stars selling you the items that they have supposedly designed and wear themselves is HSN and QVC.  Tonight it was GR's night.  She had leggings for $66.97 with shipping and handling that looked exactly like a pair I bought for $20.00 at the Mall last week.  She had a scarf the same dimensions as I bought at Nordsroms for $24.00 but with her name on it the price is $37.00.  A blouse with pleats on the front, with a tie at the neck you can remove that  I have seen in every store at the Mall she was pitching as being totally unique.  Really?????

The upshot is the home shopping networks get free PR from viewers calling in and gushing over the celebrity of the hour in ways that no amount of advertising campaigns could ever come up with.  It boggles my mind where all this is going.  Instead of seeing THE GAP or GUESS on tees, and sweat shirts we can see as often GIULLIANA, and IMAN.

Excuse me now while I watch my Friday night show Fashion Police.  No I do not own any Joan Rivers jewelry, sunglasses, or clothing she sells on QVC.  If she or any of the famous personalities had any items I thought were interesting and worth the shipping and handling I surely would order mine now before it was too late.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

When Exercise Is More Than That

Tonight I am feeling muscle fatigue but mental strength.  Adding a few more advanced ballet classes to my schedule has pushed me to a new level of endurance.   It takes much more time commitment not just in the dance studio but also allowing for the fatigue factor.  I have to find ways to adjust to my free time feeling more like just exhausted time.
Google phot ballet training


Some say ballet training is extremely hard on the body but one of my favorite teachers told me this is only true if you do not practice correctly. I agree, all of my injuries have come from faulty use of my body.  One time I admired a dancer in class so much I told myself I was going to jump with all my might as high as she did.  I went off in a corner and kept practicing the leap over and over.  That night taking a bath I noticed my foot was all black and blue on the bottom.  The next day I went to class and my teacher told me to go home, that I had broken all the blood vessels in the bottom of my foot and not to come back until the bruising was gone.  I have had uncountable minor injuries over the last twenty years that has prevented me from dance and those are times when I have really had to stay positive in body, mind, and spirit. 

So what is "normal" when it comes to exercise as we grow into our 60's, 70's. 80's, 90's and beyond? 
With healthcare the number one issue and concern on the nightly news and what appears like the whole world running for their lives literally and figuratively my question is how is running considered healthy over the long run?  The jury is still out on that one too.  I know they have running events for every major disease known to man but is running itself good for dis-ease?
Google photo of senior runners
My neighborhood is full of runners.  My guess is 80 percent are under age 40, 19 percent under age 60 and less than one percent over that.  So my question is how is running a healthy exercise?  Or is it more than that?  What is this journey other than creating the healthiest lifestyle we can find?  It seems most people buy into the idea we automatically deteriorate as we age so be it.  I am questioning other alternatives......

Is anyone else questioning alternatives to deteriorating?  

Saturday, September 15, 2012

When You Fall In Love

Fashion faux paux's I think they call it.  An outfit that misses the mark. This is how I felt today wearing a dress that is too short and just not my style.
It's okay. It is too short.  A perfect example of why I normally do not purchase items when I go shopping.  It is getting harder to find anything that I consider "me".  From now on a renewed vow is to never buy anything  that I am not 100 percent in love with.  I already know I cannot trust anything I see online. I wonder though if there are any items of clothing out there that I can physically find at a store, feel the fabric, try it on, and know it is the one?  Is it just me or are clothes in general going down hill?  Why did I ever settle for something like this?  When I don't even wear stripes.  No it does not look any better when standing up straight.
 Later in the day I went shopping for leggings.  I tried on five pair of different labels all in the $65.00 to $99.00 price range just to see if they fit better than the $20.00 leggings.  The answer a resounding NOOOOO!  My lifestyle is perfect for leggings, top, and blazer to wear with heels, shooties, or boots.  I then looked for boots.  Of course the heel height I want is no where to be found and who decided we wanted slouch boots year after year after year?  If they are not slouch then they are flat soled and look like ones the guys wear under their jeans.

At least hunting for clothes I like is much more fun than looking for a man.  I cannot imagine how hard that is these days yet my two friends who married today found each other online and after four years of having great fun together they decided to go all the way.  They are the perfect couple and a great example that anything and everything is possible. 


Monday, September 10, 2012

Is Growing Older And Wilder A Good Idea?

This weekend I purchased a dress I first saw on an Asian girl that had come out of the dressing room to look in the daylight mirror and she looked great!!!  The dress is bright shades of greens, oranges, blues, and cremes stripes in chiffon on the top and a rose brown stretch pencil skirt with a black grosgrain  sash.  It looked so perfect on her I had to try it on.  I do not own a dress currently and will be attending a wedding this Saturday morning.  Bought it, did not fit in the shoulders so did some altering, ironed it and hung it in my closet.  Every time I look at it I say, "WHHHHHAT???"  I do not like it.  I never wear stripes. and I cannot relate to the style at all.  Can't return it because I made the alterations. 
Google image of Miuccia Prada
I've never had to be what I call "board room ready" or politically correct in my dress.  Creativity abounds and the only thing that I need is to feel me in my choices.  When I read a quote from Ms. Prada I totally agreed.  "Women always try to tame themselves as they get older, but the ones who look best are often a bit wilder, thinking about age all the time is the biggest prison women can make for themselves.."  I have no idea how my new dress is going to look on but my concern is I am not going to feel like myself.  We shall see.
Google image ladies in hats
 It at least will take me out of my comfort zone and maybe that will be fun?  Do you ever dress in a style that you think is new and different than you normally do?  I am not one who likes to dress in a costume of crazy hats and huge colored glasses but I also do not want to look like a J. Crew, Ann Taylor, Talbot's type mannequin.  I do think growing older and bolder is a good idea, but this new dress I think is just going to make me look like someone I don't know.  Oh well, maybe it will surprise me in a good way and I will want all stripes in my wardrobe from now on.  Is there a pattern or color that you do not wear?  If you did do you think you could change your mind?
Google image women in glasses




Thursday, September 6, 2012

Do You Love What You Do

Here is the old-fashioned way to spend time alone...
Image of how I like to relax
Here is the 2012 way to spend alone time...
Google image woman relaxing
Taking Advanced Ballet classes along side professional dancers can be very intimidating.  There is an article in Runners World magazine titled Rewire Your Brain.  I have been trying it out but usually forget as soon as I walk in to the huge performance studio.  The idea is fear and doubts are natural emotions.  In order to not worry so much focus on the process of improving and surround yourself with positive thoughts of confidence.  This is helpful to me while getting dressed for class, and driving to class but the moment I walk through the doors I feel surrounded by the 2012 images of dancers while I feel like the old-fashioned one.

The article goes on to say the people are most intimidated by faster runners than anything else.  This is the true for ballet class.  It is not the combinations being too difficult that is worrisome, it is letting myself feel intimidated by the better dancers.   What is helpful so far is to just go for it.  The addiction to dance is like to ice cream.  At first I limit myself to a bowl at a time and soon no need for a bowl I just eat the whole carton.  When I first started at this new studio it was so stressful I had to limit myself to one class a week.   After three months I realized I did not have to hold myself back.

Now within one and the same class I can feel like I am slogging through blinding rain that will never end...

...to just enjoying the class rain and all...
....to some moments of pure bliss....
This is why I love to dance.