Finding and creating adventures in everyday life.

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Fashion on Friday – November 28, 2014

I figured I better get these Autumnesque photos out there before Winter gets here. Ha! We’ve had heaps of snow already and I’m loving it!

These outfits are from earlier in the season. My boys and I have a tradition of going to Drake Park in the Fall to take photos. We really live in such a beautiful place and I feel blessed to live in Bend.

So I thought I would share a few photos of them – proud Momma moment. After I took their pictures, I had the bright idea of having my seven year old take my outfit photos on this particular day. I don’t know why I haven’t thought of this before. He’s been getting into photography so it’s been a good idea for both of us. He’s learning and I’ve got a new photographer!

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This is another eShakti dress. Love it! My sister and I both fell in love with it and got it on sale. Amazingly comfortable, great fit and pockets of course! And I think it’s pretty darn cute – a great Fall maxi dress. The fabric is pretty light weight and with the short sleeves, I can probably wear it in the Summer too.

Outfit Details: Dress – eShakti, Boots – Ross

I really do love dressing for cooler weather. I feel like I have so many more options. I’m going to work on not being a hot weather hater though. But seriously, when the weather is cool, I get to wear coats like the one below…

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This is a vintage coat I got at a thrift store. I love it so very much. The fabric is amazing. I think I may have actually worn this coat most of the day – I wanted to make sure everyone saw it!

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This is a dress from Target from a few years ago. I paired it with some vintage and modern accessories. This necklace was another thrift store find – love it! I think it looks like a mid-century wall hanging. My ring is another vintage earring that I made into a ring.

Outfit Details: Coat – vintage/thrifted, Dress – Target, Belt – ?, Boots – Ross, Leggings – Walmart, Necklace and Ring – vintage/thrifted.

If you are in the States, or if you celebrate Thanksgiving anywhere else, I hope you had a great day. I am so thankful for my life – with its many imperfections and challenges – it truly is a wonderful life. If you are into Black Friday shopping – I hope you find some amazing deals – be kind, have fun, be safe. I will not be venturing out to the shops, but I may have a look around at the online deals.

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Fashion on Friday – Project Runway Style

My sister recently treated me to an overnight stay in Portland. Portland, Oregon is about half way between Tacoma, Washington where she lives and Bend, Oregon where I live. We met up and it was great to have some sister time together.

My sister and I are both big fans of Project Runway – we always have a text or phone conversation about each episode after it airs. In Season 11, we were both rooting for Michelle Lesniak and were thrilled when she won. She’s a native Portland girl and when I found out when and where we would be for our getaway, I took a chance and contacted Michelle to see if she had an open studio or shop that we could visit. She doesn’t yet have an open studio, but she’s working on it. However, she was so kind to get back to me and invite us to come for a visit. I wanted to surprise my sister, so I just gave her the address and met her there.IMG_20141106_152258

Michelle and her intern were so kind and friendly. We talked a bit about the area the studio is in, Michelle’s fabrics and designs, the fashion business and, of course, Tim Gunn! Apparently, he’s as kind and wonderful as he seems on telly. It was so fun to be able to surprise my sister and a thrill to meet Michelle. She’s on Project Runway All-Stars in the current season and we are still huge fans. She’s funny and ever so talented.

So, what does one wear to meet an amazing designer that you really admire? I’m usually a pretty quick dresser, I don’t take a lot of time choosing outfits or trying on multiple things, but that was not the case this time. I have no idea how many things I tried on. It was super fun though because it had me reaching deeper into my wardrobe than I have in a while and trying different things. I wanted to be comfortable as we would be walking around in downtown Portland, I wanted to look cool and interesting, but I didn’t want to look like I was trying too hard. I have no idea if I succeeded on all counts, but I was comfortable and Michelle didn’t look at me with pity or anything. I wore a knit dress with a tulle skirt from Target, an ancient ballet-style top from Target, red tights from Forever 21, shoes from Blowfish and a vintage, articulated owl necklace.

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Stephanie and I had so much fun – we stayed downtown at the amazing Benson Hotel, enjoyed Happy Hour at the Portland City Grill with amazing views of Portland, slept well, wandered around Portland, had breakfast at The Urban Farmer inside The Nines Hotel (a Dungeness Crab Omelet!) and then headed over to IKEA and some other shops before heading home to our families. Such a wonderful time together. I’m so thankful for my sister.


Dungeness Crab Omelet!


A spot of pool at the Nines.


The Urban Farmer

Not sure there's enough room on this sofa!

Not sure there’s enough room on this sofa!

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Words on Wednesday – Doing Hard Things

I’m pretty lazy. I’m also a procrastinator. I wish I weren’t and I am trying to change, but those are the facts. These are not traits that I admire and I hope that I don’t pass them on to my children.

I’m also a homebody and while I love being outdoors, it’s not always my first choice. That being said, I have been making an effort to get outside more and make sure that outdoor activities are a part of our family life. We recently got away to the Oregon Gardens Resort for a couple of days as a family and included lots of outdoor time and activities.

On our way to the Resort, we stopped at Silver Falls. Our hiking book said it was a pretty easy hiking loop – I love loops – I don’t like backtracking. It mentioned some elevation change, but it didn’t seem too bad. It was a bit rainy, but we headed out and it was amazing! You actually start at the top of the North Falls and then the trail leads you down to the South Falls. When I say leads you down, I mean DOWN. Which is all well and good until you realize you have to hike back UP to get back to the car.IMG_20141018_164038 IMG_20141018_164056 October 2014 164 October 2014 198

Both Falls were beautiful and you actually get to walk underneath them. The boys were loving it and so was I. Once we passed the Lower South Falls, the trail started to head on back to the parking area. It was a picturesque hike on a paved trail, but it was hard work – lots of switchbacks that seemed to never end. I was tired and as Jude and I walked along, he made it clear that he was tired too and wasn’t very happy about this hike. I responded, as much to myself as to him, that if we weren’t making our way back UP, it would mean that we hadn’t gone DOWN to see the Falls. Hard work isn’t always fun, but there is often a reason that will make it worth it. October 2014 186 October 2014 209 October 2014 211 October 2014 240 edit

The following day, we spent hours in the Oregon Gardens doing a geocache challenge – it involved finding 10 geocaches throughout the Garden. It was a lot of fun, but it took a long time and there were several geocaches that were very hard to find and we all wanted to give up at times. The hardest one to find was the last one and it was terrible! It was tiny and nearly impossible to see even though we knew we were in the right place. Again, that desire to give up was strong in all of us, but we persevered and finished what we started. October 2014 252 October 2014 258 October 2014 277 October 2014 274 October 2014 283

So as I face hard things, things that I don’t want to do, that are challenging and difficult, I can remember the lessons that I hope my boys learned. Somethings are hard to do, do them anyway. There will be rewards that are obvious – views, experiences, bragging rights. There will be rewards that are not so obvious – the strengthening of those invisible muscles of will, the knowledge that you can do things that are difficult, courage that the next time you are challenged, while it might not be easy, you can do this.

I also learned some lessons on our hike and during out time in the Garden. It’s easier to do difficult things when you are sharing the journey – you will sometimes have to do things by yourself, but seek help or support or simply a listening ear whenever you can. Colin often encourages me when I want to give up and then, I hope, I encourage him when his enthusiasm wanes and he is discouraged. Have fun and laugh – we laughed a lot in the rain as we climbed the path and as we searched for those elusive geocaches – we also argued some and weren’t always kind, but the laughter and the jokes won out and made the difficulties easier. Once you have done that hard thing, no one can take that from you. It’s done. There will be more hard things, but that hard thing is done. You may have to do that particular hard thing again, but you’ll know that you can do it.

I also know that sometimes I don’t do the hard things. I shy away. I avoid. I don’t even begin. Other times I start and I give up, I don’t finish. It makes me sad, it frustrates me, it discourages me and it can make me want to give up on future endeavors. I have to think about what I would tell me children if they shied away from a challenge or started something and gave up because it was difficult. I wouldn’t love them any less. I wouldn’t think that they were less. I wouldn’t berate them. I would love them and comfort them and I would challenge them – remind them that they can, in fact, do difficult things. Perhaps instead of beating myself up when I don’t complete a challenge, I can do what I would do for my kids – love, comfort, remember and challenge.

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Tasty Tuesday – Easy, Healthy, Tasty

Lettuce wraps have become one of our favorite, healthy meals. We are having them less now that it hasn’t been over freezing for nearly a week, but they are so easy and fresh, they’ll still be in the rotation for winter meals.

I have made Chinese-style lettuce wraps, Mexican-style lettuce wraps and these, Buffalo chicken wraps. These were so good and the lettuce and goat cheese were a nice balance to the heat of the Buffalo sauce.

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Another easy, healthy meal is zucchini boats – you can mix it up with different styles – Italian, cheeseburger, Chinese – so many choices. I made Mexican this time.

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I’m always on the lookout for versatile, easy, healthy meal options. Let me know if you have some good ones.

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Fashion on Friday – Halloween Edition

So my busy week turned into a few busy weeks. Today, we are having a snow day – enjoying a slower pace and a chance to catch up.

I had so much fun this Halloween and was able to wear my costume four times! Now that’s value.

I am a Doctor Who fan as is now obvious to everyone. It was fun to wear my costume to different events and find those who knew what I was and those who hadn’t a clue (which is ok, but I’m sad that they are missing out).

This outfit was so comfortable which was great as I wore it not only to parties and trick or treating,but also to our school Harvest Festival and to a kindergarten Halloween party that involved projectile vomiting (not me or mine, but very sad for the lad who did)!

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I love my Doctor (we couldn’t find a fez big enough for him and I wouldn’t let him shave his beard) and my Lego Emmet and my black cat.

Do yourself a favor and watch some Doctor Who!