Friday, February 27, 2009

I went out today!

Ok, so yesterday I didn't make it out after all...when I changed back into my sweats after my photo I never did get up the energy for that run to the store.

But today I did!!!

Good grief, I'm celebrating a trip to the A&P, lol ;)

This was a no-brainer outfit: cardigan from NY&Co, knit tee from Kohls, distressed jeans and boots both from Target. The necklace & bracelet are from JC Penney (I think).

I hope everyone has a GREAT weekend, I know I'm really looking forward to a healthy one :D

Thursday, February 26, 2009

I got dressed today!!!

You know things have been rough when you feel like celebrating the basic act of putting on clothes, lol.

I do feel a tad bit better today, so I did put on actual clothing this morning and took this photo -- then promptly changed back into sweats and called it a day, lol. Oh well, it's progress, at least. And I'll throw the outfit back on later if I get up the energy to make a VERY necessary grocery run...we're out of nearly everything after being cooped up sick for so long.

The sage green cable knit sweater came from JC Penney, the long-sleeve plum colored tissue tee from Target. The jeans are Ralph Lauren, the black boots Merona from Target. The necklace I think is from Target as well, and the pin is from my Etsy destash purchase.

Hope everyone has a great day and that anyone under the weather is feeling at least a little sunnier!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Misery loves company...

Here's yet another photo from the archives -- I think I've only got a couple left so it's a good thing I feel a wee bit better. Not great, not even good enough to get dressed to go out, but better nonetheless.

And apparently I'm not alone, several of you wonderful people have commiserated with me and are feeling under the weather have my heartfelt sympathies. Here's to hoping we all feel totally well ASAP!

As to this outfit, I honestly can't remember why I didn't post this picture to the blog -- must have been something I didn't care for that in my present sickly state I cannot fathom, lol.

The floral shirt is from JC Penney, the cardigan from NY&Co. The black pin is from Target, as well as the boots. And yes, those are my ubiquitous Ralph Lauren jeans :)

Hope everyone has a great evening -- see ya tomorrow!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Didn't wear this today either...

Yup, still sick -- bleh! Apparently this cold is one of those lingering, miserable, just-when-you-thought-ya-were-on-the-mend-I'll-whack-you-one-more-time, kinda deals.

Again: bleh.

So digging into the photo files I went. This is what I found.

I had just gotten the cardigan from JC Penney's and wore it the next day. While I was at it, I tried it on with a couple other things to see how it looked, thus this picture.

Loved the cardi with this sleevless striped top I got last summer from Target but it looked funny to me with the super dark wash of my Ralph Lauren jeans so I didn't use the photo on the blog. However it will definitely be a good combo with a denim skirt, some light-weight capris or even a more medium wash jean so I'm glad I tried it.

Hope everyone had a great weekend, see ya Tuesday w/an outfit pic (one way or the other, lol!)

Friday, February 20, 2009

What I didn't wear today

This photo wasn't taken today because I'm still sick, bleh.

The pic is from my outfit photo file and was taken perhaps a few weeks ago. I wore the outfit that day, but after seeing this photo I took off the necklace and changed into boots (more practical w/the snow).

This was one of those days I probably wore two outfits and posted the other one to the blog instead of this one...that happens maybe once every other week or so.

I often go out early in the morning to run some errands while DH stays w/the kids...then come home, hang around the house for a while, only to go out again later. Most of the time I wear the same outfit when I go out the 2nd time, but if I'm not crazy about what I originally chose, I might change into something else.

All of which has resulted in a handful of photos that weren't used on the blog collecting virtual dust in my files. In the case of this ensemble what I didn't like was the necklace -- it seemed too much with the pin and didn't hang as nicely as I thought it would.

The peplum cableknit sweater is from NY&Co, as well as the striped cardigan. The pin was from my Etsy haul, the bracelet from JC Penney's, I think. The jeans are Target and the Maryjanes are secondhand.

Hope everyone has a great weekend, no doubt I'll be back to my old self by Monday (she said hopefully)!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I'm going with the picadillo recipe

Yesterday when I posted I was sick I joked that I might post a recipe for picadillo today. I wasn't actually planning on doing that, but I was in the process writing about it for a friend of a friend who is new to vegetarianism so I had it on my mind. I fully intended to find something in my outfit photo files, maybe an outake. But, today I feel soooooo crappy that I am going to post the recipe since it's written and ready to go. Chalk this up to the "matters beyond my wardrobe" clause stated clearly on the right over there :D

This was the main dish requested by DH for his recent B-day. It's simple, homey and true comfort food filled with childhood memories.

As a vegetarian pretty much any recipe can easily be “veg-ified”…case in point, this traditional favorite from DH’s youth. He is half Cuban and has fond memories of his grandfather making picadillo for the whole family, often along with plantanos fritos, (fried bananas). Picadillo is one of those pervasive recipes that every Latin family seemed to have a slightly different version of, not to mention regional differences between various Spanish speaking cultures around the if there’s something you’d like to leave out or add, go for it, make it your own.

If you are unfamiliar with vegetarian protein sources (in this case a ground meat substitute)…I urge you to try it – it completely takes on the flavors of the other ingredients in the dish and adds the perfect texture. It’s also much healthier, still high in protein but low in fat with a really nice dose of fiber to boot.

If you did decide to make this with a non-vegetarian protein source, note that you will need to change the preparation to compensate since most vegetarian meat analogs are already cooked and therefore you are essentially just flavoring and heating it.


1 large onion, diced
1 large green bell pepper, diced
1 small stalk celery, diced
1 small carrot, diced
4 (minimum) garlic cloves, smashed & minced (I use about 6-8!)
24oz (2pkgs) Lightlife Smartground (may sub other similar product)
8 or 9 plum or Roma tomatoes, seeded & chopped
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 6oz jar pimento stuffed green olives, drained & sliced
1/2 cup of raisins, lightly packed
½ cup white rum, vodka or wine (may replace w/vegetable broth)
1 14oz can diced tomatoes
vegetable broth, as needed
oil for misting or brushing the pan

Salt liberally throughout to taste

In a very large frying pan brushed or misted well with oil, sauté on low/med heat the onion, carrot, celery, & green pepper until softened, using splashes of vegetable broth to deglaze if needed.

Add the plum tomatoes, garlic, alcohol, spices, olives & raisins and continue to saute till everything is totally cooked thru and all the veggies are completely soft.

Finally add the Smartground and the canned diced tomatoes. Reduce heat to very low, simmer for about 15 minutes until all the flavors marry.

makes six servings w/318 calories, 26 gm protein, 3 gm fat, 9 gm fiber


Mealtime suggestions:

This is great to prepare in the summer since tomatoes and peppers are in season. You can cook in the morning and reheat for dinner – keeps the kitchen cool too. Paired with a simple salad dressed with lime juice, some sliced avocado and a side dish of grilled corn you have a really super summer feast. While you’re grilling that corn, try grilling some mangoes and pineapple for dessert and serve them with a tropical fruit sorbet.

In the colder months when tomatoes aren’t at there best you can use all canned for the recipe. For a hearty winter meal try serving this with black beans & rice, which is traditional, or you could even top baked white or sweet potatoes with the picadillo for something a little different. Pair with a side of steamed greens to round out the meal. A banana pudding makes for a nice, and easy, dessert.


I doubt there will be an outfit pic tomorrow, but hopefully Friday -- see ya then!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Tho I didn't know it when the photo was taken, I am sick :( Just a cold, but miserable nonetheless. Either I've caught a belated version of what my kids & DH had a while ago, or this is a new round starting (and hopefully ending) with me.

This picture was taken yesterday morning, when I thought my throat was only a wee bit sore from the dry heat in the house. I doubt there will be a new photo tomorrow since I'm staying in and drowning myself with all the home remedies I know. But I may post some outakes for a lark, or do some early spring cleaning of my photo files and post a pic I missed...or heck, maybe I'll throw up a recipe for DH's favorite picadillo, lol, who knows?

Meantime, I really love the colors of this blouse, from Kohls, I was drawn to it before I even knew what type of garment it was hanging on the rack. The distressed jeans are from Target, the plum Maryjanes second hand. I think the necklace came from JC Penney's, the bracelet for sure.

Have a healthy day everyone (achoooooooooo)!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Rockin V-day

This is a more, shall we say, "grown-up" outfit for Valentines Day, at least compared to Friday's ;) Hey, once a rocker chick always a rocker chick, I guess, lol.

And speaking of music, the lace blouse is from NY&Co and was worn before here for a song inspired picture thanks to the ever lovely Jane of the inspiring blog, Work That Wardrobe.

The shrug is from the Gap, the skinny jeans are INC black velvet. The espresso colored boots are Unisa from Marty's.

And just for a little touch of sweetness, the locket reappears from Friday.

Hope everyone had a GREAT Valentine's Day!!!!

See ya Tuesday :)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Silver hearts & red shoes

Interesting that a day of bad luck or horror preceeds a day of love and romance this year. I'm not sure where I'm going with that thought, lol, just putting it out there in the universe I guess ;)

Today's outfit was thrown together last minute just for the sake of Valentine's Day. The red cable knit sweater was a long ago gift, the cardigan is Apt 9 from Kohls; I wore it last month -- with the same necklace, actually. The jeans Ralph Lauren, and the cute red shoes are American Eagle from Payless.

The silver-toned string of hearts necklace is from Target, the single sterling silver heart on a chain was a gift from my mother. She gave it to me on my first Mother's day as a new mommie, and inside is a picture of my DD as a baby.

I hope your weekend is filled with tons of love and that your heart is full!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Two for one

Ok, I admit it -- it was so warm out yesterday I took a spare picture :) I'm glad I did, too, for while it's not super cold out today it IS super windy with 60mph gusts. Plus I'm staying in today and cleaning, so there'd be no outfit photo anyway. And I was trying this on to see if it still fit, so why not snap a photo -- the camera has become a great gauge to see how things really look.

DD calls this my "splash of color" shirt. It was $6.00 off the clearance rack at NY&Co.

You know how they say if you wouldn't pay full price for something don't buy it just 'cause it's on clearance? I totally agree, but broke the rule with this blouse. What I don't completely love is the neckline -- it's wide and stiff so that no matter what bra I wear it seems to show as I move around and I'm always futzing with it. But with a camisole underneath it's not the worst thing to show a little lace so that makes it feasible. Oh, and it looks ok under a cardigan too, so it can be a layering piece....all of which justifies the 6 bucks spent, lol.

Anyway, the jeans are Target, the Maryjanes are secondhand. The pendant and bracelet, both from JC Penney, are what I wore in yesterday's photo. The additional silver toned chain is vintage, from my mother.

Have a great, windswept day!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

In the 60's!!!!

Just a t-shirt and jeans.

Let me say that again...just a t-shirt and jeans.

Can you believe it???

No cardigan, no layers. Not even boots.

Once more....


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Too much?

Sometimes things aren't black & white, even when they are.

Take this cardi, for instance. I'm back and forth about it...floating somewhere in the gray between whether or not I like it. I think the print may be just a bit too large.

They say a print, like a handbag, should match a woman's stature. As a woman who used to be much larger, I'm used to immediately gravitating towards the biggest pattern I can find. Not so, now. I've found the same is true of many of my purses...what once looked totally proportioned, now looks like a giant sack. Not that I'm diminutive, but I'm smaller than I think; body dysmorphia strikes again.

So, is the cardigan too much?

I bought it because I love to pair black & white prints with color, as I've done with skirts in the past. But this large a print by my face might be overwhelming.

Anyway, the cardi, btw, is from JC Penney. The cable knit sweater with the peplum detail is from NY&Co. The jeans are Ralph Lauren, the boots Merona from Target. The necklace is from a dollar store.

Have a great, colorful day!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Teal & brown

The first time I took notice of this color combination it was back in December when the super fashionable Sheila from the wonderful blog Ephemera wore an outfit with a teal (or turquoise) paired with brown. Blues and browns were a relatively new combo for me and I had fallen in love...but particularly the pairing Sheila did really spoke to me.

When I recently got both this brown skirt & blouse from JC Penney, I knew immediately I was going to try wearing them with my teal cardigan from NY&Co.

Sure enough, I love this outfit :)

Thanks for the inspiration, Sheila -- as always!

We'll be celebrating DH's B-day today & tomorrow, so I will be back on Tuesday w/another outfit pic -- hope everyone is enjoying their weekend!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Coy Kay

Hmmm, ok, I'm not exactly sure what is up with my affected demure pose, lol, but it was the best one of the bunch so there I am :)

The blouse is Liz&Co and the cardigan Designers Originals (clearance rack), both from JC Penney. The brown slacks are BandolinoBlu from Macy's. The brown, faux suede short boots are Merona Kenna from Target.

The necklace is my own amalgamation of a blue earring hanging off a brown beaded necklace, both from a dollar store. I put it together pretty much just for the outfit -- simply took off the hook from the earring and slipped a large jump ring around it to hang on the necklace. Easy as pie and it fits the style & color scheme of the blouse, yes?

I am SO glad this week is over, it's been a major killer. Sick kids, DH's root canal, and other miscellany. But Monday is DH's 43rd B-day so we're going out alone together Sunday afternoon/evening for a nice dinner and movie to kick off the little celebration...really can't wait!

Have a great weekend everyone!!!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Oh deer!

No outfit photo, staying in and having a shlumpy day trying to catch up with a few things at home.

But to entertain you I thought I'd put up another wildlife pic from my yard. As some may remember, I once posted a picture of a barred owl that frequently hung out on a hemlock branch behind where I often take my daily photos.

Well, this young buck has come around quite often too. He also isn't camera shy, so perhaps he could stand in for me until tomorrow :)

Notice he wears his antlers particulalry well, don't you think? And that shade of brown looks lovely on him, yes?

Have a great day, see ya tomorrow with an outfit picture!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Make it snappy

This blue cardigan from Kohls was paired with the leopard blouse the other day, but since I didn't actually wear the ensemble out I decided to use the cardigan again sooner rather than later.

I'm also accessorizing it with one of the button brooches I made :)

My necklace & the beaded bracelet are both dollar store finds. The plain, black button-down shirt is from Macy's; boots are from Target.

The slight problem with the cardigan is that it actually snaps rather than buttons, meaning if it's left open you could see the "bare" half of the snap on the one side without the decorative button. Of course then said snap fell off anyway (figures, right?) I thought about just leaving it off, but you can sort of see in the photo when I wore it the other day that the fabric is a bit puckered there. I thought about sewing the extra button that came with it over the area, but then I couldn't ever close the sweater properly -- it would always have to either be pinned or totally open.

To solve the issue lickety split I just took that extra button and turned it into a sort of temporary button by gluing a pin back to it. Now I have options -- when I want to leave the cardigan open or use a brooch to close it as I did today, I can simply pin the extra button over the re-sewn bare snap and it looks like a double button detail meant to be a design feature of the garment. Otherwise I can just snap the thing closed as it was intended.

So now the post title makes a little more sense, huh? I know, it seems like alot to go thru for a silly cardigan, lol -- but it took way more time to explain the process than to actually do it...besides, it's always worth a little effort to be a snappy dresser (get it, snappy dresser!)

Ugh, yeah, I know -- sorry ;)

PS: I know I've received a couple awards (thank you!!!) and that I've been remiss in stopping by some of your wonderful blogs to say hi as usual -- sooooo sorry, I've just been overwhelmed lately with a few minor projects & motherhood (2yo has a cold, rest of us are fighting it) -- ANYWAY, I just wanted to mention that I've not forgotten you, miss you and will be 'round asap :D

Have a great, healthy day!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Michelle Obama Challenge

The super adorable Cat from the cleverly stylish blog, Thrifty Muse, put forth a unique challenge: create an outfit inspired by our new First Lady, Michelle Obama. I love challenges, so immediately said, "I'm in!"

Now, when it comes to Michelle Obama I'm totally an admirer, although I'm probably more interested in how she might redefine the role of "First Lady". I'm also not much of a label devotee; I'm fairly clueless regarding which particular designers are in the forefront of high fashion at a given moment. I do know what I like, so I just sort of go from there :)

Yet like so many women I can't help but find myself utterly fascinated by Ms. Obama's sense of style and continue to find her particularly striking and totally relatable. Specifically, Michelle Obama has what I perceive to be a restrained flourish with accessories, strong attention to detail, and keen eye for the marriage of simple lines, textures & vibrant colors. The bottom line is this is a smart, savvy, down to earth woman in a lofty place, seemingly keeping true to herself and what she likes, what she feels is appropriate. She has her own style and seems at ease with it all. I say more power to her :)

But back to the challenge -- could I put together an outfit that looked anything remotely like what she wears? I mean, I admire her style, and yes, share a love of brooches, but I don't think our tastes are really that similar over all. Certainly our lifestyles aren't at the moment, lol. This was harder than I thought

After looking thru some pix of her I found a REALLY simple outfit that I thought I could imitate at least somewhat. Of course, I've no idea what she wore on the bottom half so that made it even easier, lol, I admit. But for what it's worth, here is my version along side the actual photo of Ms. Obama...and then how I changed the details of the ensemble to fit my own, personal "real life" style.

My cardigan is Daisy Fuentes from Kohls, the satin blouse is from NY&Co and the brooch was an Etsy find. In the full length photo on the left you can see the black, wide-leg BandolinoBlu trousers from Macy's, the black Merona short boots from Target and a necklace gifted from my mother (I've also moved the pin down to close the cardi, my preference).

This was absolutely fun & a total blast. It made me think about what defines style and what interest I have in others' interpretations of fashion trends. Thanks so much to Cat for coming up with this truly exceptional challenge -- great idea!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Seafoam & snow

More snow came & went, with still another dose on the way. While we haven't gotten any huge storms that buried us deep this winter, there's been repeated snowfalls that have kept my area blanketed in white for a long time now. I was hoping for a total meltdown, however it's not happened yet.

But I was thinking spring and trying on some lighter-weight stuff for when the thaw does finally come. This seafoam colored cardigan is from JC Penney and I've paired it with a simple teal T-shirt. The jeans are my usual Ralph Laurens, the black Merona boots from Target.

The beautiful necklace was a holiday gift from my mom.

Speaking of stuff like warmer weather & seafoam, I've also been trying on (GULP!) bathing suits. It's been over 25 years since I have worn one and to even consider donning a bathing suit in public is HUGE albeit a little bit anxiety provoking, I must admit.

But we have alot of lakes around here and some lovely little beaches -- I want to go swimming with my kids. Not to mention a New England seaside vacation in the latter part of the summer/early fall.

So, any advice for choosing a suit? I've narrowed it down to tankini styles so far, but I'm willing to take any tips ya got!

Have a great Monday tomorrow everyone, see ya Tuesday :D