Saturday, October 25, 2014

A Shooting In My Town

Yesterday there was a school shooting in Washington, which I'm sure you all heard about.  It happened in my little town, a suburb about thirty minutes north of Seattle.  My son goes to the other high school here, and wasn't involved, although he does know two of the students who were shot. Our entire community is sad and traumatized.  I remembered this post I wrote a few months ago, and because I can't think of anything else today, I'm running it again.  Who knew.


On the final day of school last month, my sixteen year old son came home, and when I asked him how he felt about finishing up his sophomore year he said, and I quote, "Good. I made it through another semester without getting shot at school".  He stopped me in my tracks.

As my older son was getting ready for his first day of community college, he commented that there should be a class about what to do if a shooter shows up on campus.

These statements from my boys literally made me cry.  I am so sad that they are growing up in a world where they have to worry about gun violence in the classroom every day.  When I was their age, I felt perfectly safe at school.  In fact, I didn't even give it a second thought.

We live in a small community with a relatively low crime rate, but my boys are still worried. Our kids can't help but think about it every day, even if it's in the back of their mind.  

There have been 31 firearms attacks at U.S. schools since the start of the year.  In the eighteen months since the horrible incident at Sandy Hook Elementary, the frequency of gun related events has actually increased.

I don't know what the answer is, and I'm not prepared enough to discuss gun control or mental health needs, although those things certainly must be part of the solution.

What I do know is that I want to do something.  I don't want to just talk about it or debate it anymore,  because enough of that has been going on, and as shown by the statistics above, it's obviously not doing any good. 

I don't want my boys to be afraid every day when they go to school, and I certainly don't want my someday grandchildren to experience the same thing. 

I want to know what I can do to stop the violence.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Oscar, I Will Miss You


"Any girl from any walk of life dreams of that special dress, and I try to make that dream a reality for her" -- Oscar de la Renta


Oscar de la Renta passed away on Monday at the age of 82.   He was one of my favorite designers, and if I had the money and the fame, I would have had Oscar design my wedding gown.

The man was a true style legend, and while studying him in school, I was impressed with not only his talent, but also his kindness.  He was known as "fashion's gentleman", and those who worked with him praised his generosity.



De la Renta was born in the Dominican Republic, and learned design and tailoring from some of the best in Spain and Paris.  He came to New York in the 1960's to work for Elizabeth Arden, and after many years started his own line.  In 1991 he became the first American designer to show at Paris Fashion Week.  His affinity for the feminine in his romantic, glamorous designs came naturally - he was the sixth of seven children, and the only boy.

I found all of his dresses to be works of art, but his wedding gowns were stunning.  In 2006 he launched his ready to wear bridal line - sadly, too late for my own wedding.  I definitely would have worn this, although I probably would have had to forego the reception to afford the dress.



I know there are many who find fashion silly and frivolous, but there is no denying that Oscar de la Renta's dresses brought so much beauty into the world.  For that I say thank you, and you will be missed.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Homecoming Has Changed


Times sure have changed since I was a teenager.

This Saturday is Homecoming for my younger son.  We've spent the past few weeks choosing an outfit for him (which mostly consisted of finding a tie with just the right shade of purple to match her dress), buying a corsage, and finding a restaurant that was willing to make a reservation for fourteen teenagers. Pretty much the same routine as when I was in high school.

It's the "inviting" to Homecoming that has changed.  Gone are the days when the boy asked the girl as they walked between classes, or maybe passed her a note if he was a little shy.

Now boys are expected to go all out on the Homecoming "proposal".  There are entire websites devoted to coming up with the perfect, creative invitation.  A few I found:
  • Choreograph a 60 second dance and perform it during a break in her sporting event
  • Create a scavenger hunt 
  • Write different parts of the message in chalk outside her house for 4 or 5 days
  • Spell out the invitation with candles on her driveway
The lists go on and on, and honestly, these were some of the easier ones.  I've heard of kids spending hundreds of dollars on flowers, balloons and presents - just to ask someone to a dance.

While I suppose the intention is sweet, I've got a few issues.  First, this is putting an awful lot of pressure on boys to come up with the perfect proposal.  T said that girls are hoping for something unique that hasn't been done before.  I was reading a blogger friend's post, and her son decided to opt out of Homecoming because it was too hard to come up with an invitation.  I feel bad for him.

And can we talk about the future?  I do wonder what these kids will expect when it comes time for their marriage proposals. There were no scavenger hunts or choreographed dances when my hubby asked me to marry him, although that would have been very entertaining.

After much debate (and no help from me - harumph), T came up with a cute, easy way to ask his girlfriend to the dance.  He is the Charger mascot at football games, and he asked her at half time in front of the spectators in the stands.  She looks pretty happy about it.

Speaking of Homecoming, it's spirit week at T's school, and today was "tacky tourist" day. He wore his dad's sandals, and my hubby was quite offended that they classified as tacky.  I suggested maybe it was time for a new pair of sandals.


T asked if he could borrow my camera for the outfit.  I told him to take pictures, so I could see what a day in the life of a high school junior looked like - future blog post? This is the best of what he came up with.  Sigh.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Fall Style Challenge - Booties


It's week two of the Fall Style Me Pretty Challenge, and there's been a lot of great fashion going on.

In every challenge there is a piece or two recommended by Alison that is completely outside my comfort zone.  This time it was the booties.  I've never worn them before, and I definitely had no idea how to style them.  But I always listen to Alison, so I bought a pair.

And as usual, I love them.  They take an ordinary plaid shirt and boyfriend jean outfit and make it just a little more interesting.  I found this pair of Franco Sarto booties at Nordstrom Rack for $39.95, which is almost like stealing them.



There have also been dressy sweatshirts, gray jeans, plaid scarves, and lots of sweaters. My kind of challenge!



I'm linking up again today with my lovely friends.  Be sure to check out their blogs to see how they styled Alison's outfits!



Deena | Christy | Jordan | Carrie C. | Shaunacey | Danielle | Beth | Joy | Sarah | 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Halloween Decor Tour


I love to decorate for Halloween.  When the boys were little I went crazy with spider webs and ghosts all over the house, but over the years I've reduced things to my favorite pieces.

Please join me on a Halloween Decor Tour!

I made the above mason jars using chalk paint and stencils.  I am not crafty AT ALL, but I thought they turned out pretty good.  


Funny story with this little pumpkin.  Last year I signed my hubby up for a glass blowing class, thinking it was for adults.  Reminder to self - always read the small print. Anyway, when he arrived, everyone else was under the age of 10.  Hubby was a good sport and went ahead with the class, and of course the kids thought he was hysterical!



My mother in law gave me these china pumpkins over twenty years ago.  I have no idea how they survived two little boys.



These are my very favorite decorations, so they get a place of honor on the living room mantle.  The Halloween tree makes me so happy, and the funny tombstones remind me of the ones at Disney World.




My mom made this cross stitched haunted house scene for me last year.


And of course, the outside decor.  Because what fun would Halloween be if you didn't try to scare the trick or treaters!

Monday, October 20, 2014

It's My SITS Day!


It's like my birthday, only better. It's my SITS Day!

For those of you visiting from the SITS Girls site, welcome to my home on the internet. I spent the weekend spiffing things up!  I hope you'll stick around awhile and see what I'm all about.

And for my friends who don't know what SITS is - let me tell you!  SITS Girls (aka The Secret is In The Sauce) was founded in 2008 as a space where bloggers could gather together for online support, to grow their tribe, and to find sponsored opportunities.  If you haven't visited there, take a moment and do it now.  I head to their website at least once a day, and they always have the best information for bloggers both new and seasoned.


Thank you again for stopping by.  I'm off to make myself a SITS day cupcake - and I always share!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Faux Kate Spade


I'm a big fan of diamonds, and I'm a lucky girl because my sweet husband has given me some beautiful ones over the years.

When it comes to fashion jewelry, however, I don't want to pay a lot.  Styles change too much from year to year.  Having said that, I've been eyeing the Kate Spade New York Square Earrings for months.  But I just couldn't bring myself to spend $38 for a pair of costume jewelry earrings.

And then.....I went to Old Navy last week to do a return, and there they were.  Perfect knock offs of the Kate Spade earrings for $6.95.  Now that's the kind of price that makes me happy.  I may or may not have come home with this pink pair and a deep blue color.

For some reason, Old Navy isn't selling their jewelry online, so you'll have to head into the store if you want to pick up these lovelies.

I'm calling it my find of the fall!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.  The guys are dragging me kicking and screaming to the Seattle Car Show - ah, the joys of living in a house of men!



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