Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Winter Doldrums/Spring Trends

It’s been chilly and gray here in Central California. I know I shouldn’t complain about temps in the low 50s compared to what I used to get in Boston growing up, but still, it’s cold and bleak.

As much as I love my jeans and boots and coats and leather, I was thinking how nice it will be when the weather warms up a bit. If only it would stay in the 80s instead of continuing to rise into triple digits in July and August. But before we bemoan the intensely hot summers, let’s pause to enjoy spring. Here in Fresno the blossoms in all the orchards are just beautiful. The pink and green blooms, the smell in the air – it’s an exquisite rebirth.

To pull me out of my winter doldrums, I’m looking forward to the following spring trends:


Suede may not seem like a spring fabric, but it adds a soft touch (and a hint of 70s chic) to anything from dresses to jackets to pants this spring.


Fringe was all over the runways last fall as designers played with movement for spring. You can always incorporate a fringe handbag if the clothing is too wild for your taste.
Sonia Rykiel

Giambattista Valli

Brigitte Bardot famously wore a pink gingham dress when she got married. This checked fabric is back in style, but wear it cautiously. You don’t want to resemble a picnic table cloth.
Diane von Furstenberg


This is probably the most American textile around. Spice it up a little by not just wearing jeans – choose a denim dress or stilettos instead.
Bottega Veneta

Michael Kors
OK, I’m getting off my shoebox now.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

I'm Here

I had a long talk with a new friend yesterday morning over tea and laptops.

We talked about past loves, new directions, character traits, and career goals. We laughed over silly things and shared some girly moments and came up with breakthrough life analogies. We opened up about some fears and hopes for the coming year and beyond.

Our conversation was like a New Year’s resolution poured into a tea cup. And then we “cheers”ed it up and made a date to meet in exactly one year to assess our actions and accomplishments of 2015. We even marked our calendars.


I started the new year with a little too much emotion, thanks to my stupid female hormones. They highlighted my normally suppressed insecurities that were suddenly fraught with unruly emotion (blech). I hated every second of feeling it – of feeling.

The overarching ugliness attacking my status quo was a condemning sense of being lost. Unfocused. Directionless. Foggy. Disoriented. Purposeless. Useless.

These arrows came at me fast and hard, threatening to puncture my confidence, poise, and assurance in the Lord. I fought them off with prayer and a nap.


I suppose we need to feel feelings, as much as I fight it. In talking with my friend yesterday, something interesting came to my mind.

During both of my children’s labors, I had an epidural. Silas’s labor, especially, was intensive – 65 hours from start to finish, complete with multiple instances of vomiting and a sudden drop in his heartbeat before I gave birth. The contractions felt worse than someone forcing me to wear Birkenstocks. But then came the epidural. Ahhh, my beloved epidural.

Having that needle stabbed into my back was sweet relief (despite Jayson’s near-fainting at the sight of it). I could finally get a break from the pesky contractions that wouldn’t leave me alone. I lay down; I even closed my eyes for a couple of minutes at a time.

I stopped feeling. It was heavenly.

After what felt like an eternity, I was finally ready to push. I was giddy at the prospect of finally meeting our baby. And so I got ready to push. Only I couldn’t feel anything.

Jayson was looking at the readings from the monitor. He could see the contractions coming on, even though I couldn’t feel them. He would tell me when to push, and I tried to push, only nothing was happening. I didn’t know if I was doing it right. I couldn’t feel anything.

And so they turned down the epidural. I had to feel what was happening so that I would know when to push.

I had to feel the pain so I could get the reward.


Thankfully the hysterics passed and the melodrama faded, helped by three things:

1)      My husband’s calm demeanor (and knowing when to leave me the heck alone, for his own safety and the safety of others)
2)      The aforementioned conversation
3)      The following sign I saw on a friend’s Instagram account:

I’m here. And here is all I can be.

OK, I’m getting off my shoebox now.