Sunday, January 27, 2013

What I Wore Sunday: The Boyfriend Shirt, Two Ways

I missed the party will all you fine Mass goers last week and am happy to join back in the fun today!  It seems James and I have been pulling the tag-team move for mass due to sick kids throughout this whole winter, and with a snottylicious Jack on our hands, we flew solo to Mass again.

I had a much needed time in Confession yesterday and simply love the first Mass after receiving that beautiful Sacrament.  I was actually grateful to be alone for it this week.  It was also the kick off for Catholic schools week, and the thought of Mia marching to school in a uniform next year was exciting and terrifying.  Is it always this way with your first?

So, how about what I wore to this unexpectedly emotional Mass...

I really love tartan/plaids for winter and have been looking for a way to work it into my closet. I had a 10% off credit for Old Navy/Gap and when they had a big online sale this past week, I jumped on it!  Only problem was they didn't have my size in this navy boyfriend shirt.

I reasoned I could probably figure out how to take it in myself, thanks to Dweej's "How to Shrinkify a Too-Big Shirt" post.  So, I pretended I was no longer a regular size medium, and put one large tall shirt in my virtual shopping cart.

It arrived.  I loved it.  It fit me like a dress.

I planned to take it up and in a few inches but didn't get around to it this week.  So, I paired it with a full skirt longer than the end of the shirt, with a belt to cinch it in.

 Feeling short, I paired it with black tights and heels...all one color makes for one long line.  I'm also wearing a string of my Grandmother's pearls this week but I forgot to make sure they weren't tucked in the shirt before taking pics :(

We tried to quickly snap these in our front courtyard but soon had a curious onlooker....

Who then opened the door all by his 2-year old self....

He just can't let Mom and Dad do anything without him, or stay out of a picture.  Good thing he's cute.
But don't let that smile fool you.  He really is a snotty mess today, so I'm sure we'll all be sniffling next week.

After Mass I thought I would play around with the top as a shirt dress with leggings.  Definitely comfy enough for the rest of the day, but it does violate my general "leggings are not pants" rule.  It does have ample "rear" coverage though and the boots give some coverage too.  Probably not for Mass, but ok for a weekend afternoon.  What do you think?

So now I'm torn.  I would like to wear this with jeans, but I don't think I could stuff all that length in my pants without some serious...bulk.  Generally, not a good look. hem or not to hem?  That is the question.

And ok, who are we kidding...I have a sick child at home.  This is what I will really be in for the rest of the day.

The rundown:

For Mass...
Oversize boyfriend shirt:  Gap online
Skirt & pearl cuff: Forever 21
Yellow belt and sweater tights: Target
Heels:  Free!  Shoe swap with a friend

Dressed down....
Boots: Marshall's
Grey leggings: Old Navy
Leopard belt: came with the skirt above

 *Go check out more churching duds at Fine Linen & Purple!

Friday, January 25, 2013

7 Quick Takes Friday: Crazy Is The Name Of The Game

The crazy nasty stomach bug we've been trying to ninja kick out the door made one last appearance for Mia and I.  She missed her first day of school this year and was very concerned about missing "stuffed animal day".  Luckily, we had 2 inches of snow that put the public schools on a 2-hr delay...and therefore meant that morning 1/2 day programs were cancelled.  Yes, inches not feet.  And Mia was fine to go to school with her bunny Ruby in tow the following day.  All is well.  

We decided to bite the bullet and move Jack into a big-boy bed.  We have the two beds that James and his brother grew up with and already painted one a dark blue for Sully.

The other one is just hanging out in the garage waiting for it's coat of blue.  Since it's no longer freezing here, maybe we'll actually bust out the paint this weekend.

I don't know if it's the start of the new year or what, but I have this burning desire to organize my entire home.  Like this afternoon.  But it's not organized yet, and it's making me batty.  Batty because I will start by pulling everything out of a space, then get interrupted (or required to actually be a parent) so it's left in this blob of a mess.   I've done this in three areas so far.  Pulled it all out, created a typhoon of crazy, and not actually done the organizing.  So, I now have a new resolution - uncrazy the crazy before creating more crazy.  

Have I mentioned that Mia is doing American Heritage Girls?  No?  Mia is doing American Heritage Girls (similar to Girl Scouts but faith based)  They had their Joining Award ceremony last night and I was so proud of all my little kindergarten Pathfinder Girls!  I forgot my camera, but did snag this pic of Mia before the ceremony started.
Hopefully some other responsible parent will share the rest of their pics with me.

Last week was a crazy week for the home blog.  Crazy good and overwhelming!  Our breakfast nook was featured on both Young House Love and Apartment Therapy.  Very thankful for all the blogging love and support over there!

Does anyone else find it crazy that registration for the next school year is already here?!  Early registration started this week and registration will continue through February.  We have some big decisions to pray over and hopefully we'll know what we're doing next year by March.  If Mia does not get into our parish's school, I'm considering home schooling her for next year.  All you homeschooling vets, please tell me I'm not CRAZY!

Our prayers are with all those walking in the March For Life in freezing DC today!

That wraps it up for us!  Go visit Jen for the less cray-cray Quick Takes.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

What I Wore Sunday: Black & White...And Some Color

Today was COLD.  Around 7 degrees when I left the house for yet another tag-team Mass effort between the hubs and I.  We have a little one with tummy troubles again, so it was a solo Mass weekend.  You would think I would be able to focus so much better by myself, or even at all, but I'm always surprised at how often I find myself having to redirect my attention back to the Mass.  Just confirmation that I need to embrace more silence and learn to quiet my mile-a-minute thoughts.  At least our priest's last words on this feast of the Baptism of our Lord are still resonating in me..."Let us be gentle Christians, full of love, and unashamed to be Catholic." Amen!

Now the outfit, right?

I found this blazer on a Target clearance rack for, wait for it.....$8.98!  I've been looking for a 3/4 sleeve blazer that I could wear year round for awhile now.  I orginially had white in mind but I love this tealy blue and for 9 bucks, I'll take it.

My favorite part might the houndstooth lining on the inside.  A happy little surprise :)

Hmmmm.  Black, white, pink, teal....I'm looking awfully similar to an area of the office we pulled together this week:

So, I don't recommend matching your outfit to your office, but it never hurts to wear and surround yourself with some of your favorite colors. 

The Rundown...

Pants: Gap online
Turtleneck, pearl-ish bracelets, and blazer: Target
Bauble necklace: Pick Your Plum (5 buckaroos!)
Pink bag: TJ Maxx

*Linking up for our weekend date at Fine Linen & Purple!  And a special thanks to the ladies running the show over there for having me as a guest to share the first part of a series on how to stretch your wardrobe earlier this week!   You can find Part Deux here.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Stretching Your Wardrobe: Part 2

If you didn't catch the first part of this series, it's being featured today over at Fine Linen & Purple!  A special thank you to Kendra and Erin for letting me share on their fantastic blog!

In Part 1, Mia and I showed how one dress could be worn four different ways, through four different seasons.  I'm following up today with just a few more things to keep in mind as you look at your closet this new year!

-Don't dismiss clothes in seasonal colors.  Just think about pairing them in new color combo's.  For example, if you paired yellow with pink, coral or turquoise during the warm months, think about wearing it with greys, plums, and more saturated blues during the fall and winter.  Even summer's pastels can be worn into fall just by pairing them with darker hues like navy and burgundy.  One of my favorite color combo's right now is mint and navy....great for spring or fall!

Navy and Mint

Pink Peonies: House of Fifty Feature...

-Capris and ankle length pants can pull their weight in winter too!  The length can be hidden under tall boots, but don't be afraid to do a cropped pant with some ankle boots.

-Don't pack up the long maxi dress or skirt (or any dress/skirt for that matter!) that you wore throughout the summer.  Throw some tights or leggings underneath, pair it with a long sleeve top, add a cropped jacket, or throw a sweater over the top....think layers.  Lots of cozy layers!

Winter Maxi

- Avoid impulse or 'cute' buys.  When shopping for clothes it's so tempting to pick something up because it's cute, your size and cheap!  All good things, but how often has than happened and the item then sat in your closet collecting dust or continued to be worn with the same pair of jeans every time?  

IT'S CUTE! - Cute is great but if you see something you like, think about how it will work with the clothes that are already in your closet.  Can you come up with 3 different ways to wear it?  Can it work in more than one season?  If so, you're off to a good start! 

IT'S MY SIZE! - It may be your size on the tag and even "fit" but does it flatter your figure?  Do you feel good when you put it on?  I could not squeeze myself into a skinny jean in my standard size, and if I could it wouldn't be pretty, but if I go up a size or even 2 (possibly more if I venture into the junior dept), then I have a pair of jeans that I can actually breath in and that work for my body without being skin-tight.

IT'S ON SALE! - I am all about a bargain.  I do a lot of my shopping online and it is rare-to-never that I buy something full price and without an additional coupon code for an extra percentage off the total purchase price.  And I know many of you are veterans at scoring thrift store steals!  But there are definitely things worth investing a little money into for quality (a good pair of dress pants, shoes, hand bag, etc.). Even these can be nabbed for less if you take the time to shop around, but learn to spot quality.  It will pay off in the long run!

-Purge often!  I think we've all been in that spot where we look at our full closet and feel like we have nothing to wear.  It's important to have clothes in your closet that fit well and that you really love - a closet with fewer items, all of which you are excited to wear, is far better than an overstuffed closet with so-so items hiding your favorites.  You'll feel overwhelmed, not be able to come up with many outfit combinations and end up wearing the same few things over and over again.  So, as we come toward the end of each season I go through my closet and pull anything that no longer fits, the dryer has shrunk, has holes, or that I simply didn't wear (especially if I didn't wear it last season either).   Less really is more in this case! 


I've always considered myself to dress fairly modestly, but over the past year I've felt God gently showing me areas where my definition of modesty was in direct relationship to how the rest of the world was dressing, not in relationship to who I am as His child - a woman created in His image and whose body is a temple of the Holy Spirit.

At one point this year I had pulled out 3 black trash bags worth of clothes from my closet that didn't fit, were falling apart or that didn't meet the level of modesty I felt God calling me toward.   This has very much been (and continues to be!) a process for me.....a process of rebuilding a wardrobe that honors my body, and in learning to think differently about clothes.  As I rebuild my closet, I'm trying to be more intentional about what I allow in.....I'm looking for clothes that have ample coverage (whether I'm standing still, bending over, or running around), that are versatile for the changing seasons, and that celebrate the gift of femininity!

I would love to hear how all of you stretch your wardrobe and how you decide what comes in and what goes when it comes to your clothes!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

What I Wore Sunday: Happy Epiphany!!

This week I channeled my inner flower child with this tie-dye looking number.  With such a bold, colorful piece I kept the accessories to a minimum and for the most part stuck with black/white.
 The boots are Sofft brand and I heart them so.  They are just slightly padded on the inside shaft making them super warm and comfy...but not a foot sauna either.

I was going to wear my hair down but since it was another naturally curly hair day, the reference to big-haired 80's rock bands was just too strong.  I clipped it in a loose side pony and called it OK for 2013. 

This watch was a stocking stuffer that I got for myself James picked out.  I had been stalking it at Target for a long time and it was fun to save it as a special gift.

The rundown...

Dress:  Ross with gift card (on clearance for $9.99!)
Leggings, watch & scarf: Target
Boots: Marshall's (4 years ago)
Jacket:  Costco (more than 4 years ago)
Earrings (the ones I've worn almost every week and have never nabbed a close up):  The Limited

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!  In case anyone has forgotten, I will remind you that the Fighting Irish are playing for the Championship title tomorrow.   Don't think we didn't stock up on all sorts of game food from Costco today and are making sure all ND t-shirts/gear are clean and washed.  Go Irish!!!!!!!!!!

Check out Fine Linen and Purple for more Mass fashion fun :)

Friday, January 4, 2013

7 Quick Takes...For The New Year!

My back went out on Christmas Day and I took advantage of having to granny up on the couch with an ice pack to think and pray on this year ahead.

Busy, stressed and overwhelmed would describe my general being in 2012.  Between all the kids' school trips/assignments/activities (and let's face it, just getting them there dressed on time), heading up a catholic moms group, leading a weekly Bible study, doing another weekly retreat/study with friends, sponsoring a young lady through RCIA, supporting James and his team through football season, meeting with friends, projects around the house, feeding my family, and oh yeah, showering....survival was my mantra, and let's be honest, I need a better one.  For my sanity and the good of our little clan!  This year what keeps coming to mind is "take care"....better care of our family, better care of our marriage, better care of our home, better care of our relationships, better care of me.

I tend to write blog posts (or at least start them) in my head all the time - any other bloggers do this?  I haven't taken any of them to "paper" on this blog recently.  Busyness can be one of the biggest distractions from taking time to listen and even clear space to think.   I want a heart that's not only open to God but that has the ability to hear Him.  So, more quiet and less noise.  Yes, please.

I moved the personal style posts over to this blog (you can click on the "What I Wore" tab for more) and wonder why I didn't do it sooner.  The Fresh Coat Of Paint blog is now much less confused - it was beginning to sounds like two different voices over there - and I'm excited about the direction for that blog now that my focus is clear again!  And having the style posts over here has given me some fresh mojo for bringing this blog back to life.  Poor thing has been ignored and neglected.

So, more work on two blogs for the coming year.....and that's supposed to reduce the stress level?  Yes.  More dedicated/efficient work and less try-to-squeeze-it-in-everywhere-else-and-not-really-accomplish-much work.  For a long time I've felt God calling me more towards my home and family.  I know....I'm a stay-at-home-mom, right?  How much more can I be here?  But I think we all know what it's like to be someplace and not really be present. I was so overwhelmed by all our commitments (in and out of the house) that I couldn't focus on any of them.  So, I'm cutting way back on commitments outside the home.  I still feel called to the blogs and their point of view of home and faith/family supports where I feel God leading us.  But this year, I'm going to try to ensure that our family drives the blogs, not the other way around.

We rung in the new year like two stylish old fogies, in bed by 9:45pm.  Don't worry, we resumed the NYE party around 1am when Sully woke up vomiting.  Five minutes later, Mia joined him.  It was a tag team effort of toilet and soiled sheet action every 10-15min or so.  Not to be left out, an hour in Jack joined the fun.  By 3am we were running scarce on clean sheets, towels and pjs, so we moved everyone to the family room.  They sat and watched Franklin and Friends for two hours, each with a towel and bowl on their lap.  They have much better aim when walking or having to sit up is not involved.  Once the heaving finally died down everyone was back in bed for a few hours of sleep.  Nothing like a severely sleep deprived and secretion expelling family to bring in the new year!  At least James was off work the next day.

Our Christmas tree is ridiculously sad.  Dry, brittle and literally sagging.  She's not making it to Epiphany, Friends.

The closet will be purged this weekend. It's feeling squished and instead of buying more hangers, or finding better space, it's time for a clearing out.  I'm still torn about my pre-baby clothes.  I'm one size away from them, but I'm a huge believer in wearing clothes that fit you now and dressing the body you currently goal for the new year is to take better care of myself.  I have no goals to lose a certain number of pounds, but I know just by changing what I eat and being more active that some weight will naturally come off (right?!).  So how long do I keep those clothes just a size too small?  Do you keep yours?  Do tell!

Ok, for my first time joining the 7 Quick Takes Friday link-up, those weren't all that quick.  I'll work on short and sweet!   And please keep the regular host of this link up (Jen Fulwiler) in your prayers, she is 24 weeks pregnant and was hospitalized for bilateral pulmonary embolisms.

I also deactivated my personal facebook know, trying to cut out the unnecessary time suckers...but I did create a page for each of the blogs where I'll share new post updates and maybe even some instagram pics....if I can figure out how to use it.  Just click on the Facebook icon on the side bar to follow along that way!  Or here, I'll make it easier....Crinion Clan FB page and our Fresh Coat Of Paint FB page.

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