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Fabulous, Functional & Frugal Fashion Tip #5

Spicing Up A Pair Of Skinny Jeans

img_20161203_152505-2You cannot go wrong accessorizing with an animal print. Even though this past Thanksgiving was going to be a simple affair, to add a little zing I wore my Ann Taylor animal print cardigan with a cami and jeans.

My brother and I ordered a takeout family thanksgiving meal from Boston Market then the two of us along with one of my sons had dinner with our mom at the nursing home. We had so much to be thankful for this year because we almost lost our mom. She not only survived but thrived and continues to be her feisty self. I’m so thankful we had the opportunity to show her she matters to us.

I’m always saying that we all have an expiration date, we just don’t know when it will occur. This past year I’ve become more aware of how fragile life is and we only have this one chance to make things right with the people in our lives. I think all in all this was one of the best holidays in recent memory.

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Outfit Description: Ann Taylor animal print cardigan with black sleeves and back, black cami, blue skinny jeans, black oxford heels. Accessories included a silver medallion necklace on a faux leather strap, drop earrings and two bracelets.

Happy Monday!

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Dialing Down Stimulation Can Increase Contentment

Dialing Down Stimulation Can Increase Contentment

A few weeks ago I wrote the post, How Purging Can Lead To A Meaningful Life of Fabulousness. This post was partly due to the outcome of my recent experience cleaning out my mother’s apartment when she was transferred to a long-term care facility.

Going through another person’s belongings to determine what to keep and what to toss is difficult. Sifting through and organizing mounds of paperwork was time-consuming yet necessary. Eventually, all loose ends were tied but I was left feeling the need to significantly reduce my possessions.

The way I approached the purging process was two-fold; tangible and virtual. Breaking each of these segments into smaller portions made the associated tasks less overwhelming and I had the benefit of seeing immediate progress.


Kickstarting The Simplistic Lifestyle

Beginning with furniture and decor, I gave away or tossed several pieces. Tackling clothing in closets, dresser, and chest of drawers was probably the most challenging areas but once I got past the “I’m holding onto this why” phase I could let go.

The feeling of narrowing two drawers (one for tees and one for camis) to one was bliss. With the first drawer done, gathering clothing, handbags, shoes, and coats was a cinch.

It was liberating to get rid of linens, towels, china, glassware, flatware, vases, CDs, DVDs, jewelry, makeup, and toys. Everything I don’t use became history. With the exception of food, the decision to no longer buy anything without discarding or giving something away is a good one for me.

Given too many choices, indecisiveness caused me to short-circuit and become paralyzed to the point of despair.  While I still have a long way to go before I’m fully satisfied, limiting spare items is making life a little easier.

I never thought I’d say this but I’m actually excited at the prospect of having less, especially shoes and clothing. Eliminating closet stress will leave room for more productive thoughts.

Over the past few weeks I’ve been able to reap some of the benefits of purging. For example, the red shoes I’m wearing in today’s pictures I’ve had them for several years but have only worn them once. Getting rid of other shoes narrowed my choices and I’ll enjoy them until it’s time to get a new pair.

Outfit Description:

  • Navy tee with three-quarter length sleeve
  • Dark rinse skinny jeans
  • Beige flyaway jacket
  • Red patent leather shoes with black kitten heel
  • Navy & white paisley print long scarf
  • Multi-strand long necklace

When I began this purging process my intention was to make things easier for my kids should something happen to me. As I kept going it was more about simplicity, leaving me with only those things that bring me joy.

In my next article I’ll discuss virtual purging and organizing. Until then have a great weekend!!

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How Purging Can Lead To A Meaningful Life Of Fabulousness

Simplicity Is The Spice Of Life

03-20160913_143508Earlier this year one of the first goals I set was to K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Steph). I was so excited at the prospect of the simpler life, for the first time ever I created a mood board and even set it up as the background on my computer.

One would think with the measures I put in place it would be easy to follow a “simple” plan of attack right? WRONG!

It began innocently enough by developing a few goals for the year. Once this was done I broke down each goal and assigned tasks to allow me to accomplish the goal. Then I periodically reviewed and updated my goals to ensure I was on target. Sounds like a reasonable plan, yes?

Now I freely admit to being somewhat of a perfectionist and while friends would disagree, I possess a little OCD trait. I mean what’s the big deal in needing order and following consistent routines?

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. ~Confucius

The issues as I see them are:

  1. When unforeseen circumstances arise, and they will, with  a minimum amount of wiggle room, the plan will go off kilter.
  2. There is an overabundance of everything; from cable TV, goods & services, computer systems, to information, etc.
  3. The aging process has put a minor kink in the plan.

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So what’s the solution to said issues? Going back to the beginning which in this case is K.I.S.S. then purge and revamp.

My mother’s illness did not fit into my plan. Knowing I need to spend quite a bit of time at the nursing home to make sure all her needs are met, the last thing I want to worry about is my appearance. Keeping it simple is a major timesaver when preparing to visit my mom.

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Granted while summer’s apparel is lighter than other seasons, by swapping out and adding a few pieces, the same formula can be used for fall and winter. On most days I wear jeans, top and flats however on those real humid days  I could be seen wearing shorts or a skirt.

With the exception of three pairs of H&M sneakers, I did not buy anything new for this past summer. Also donating last year’s capris left me capriless (a new word I made up all by my lonesome) I improvised by rolling skinny jeans midway up my calf.

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Since part of my purging process was getting rid of things (including clothing) I do not use, I was thrilled to find two tees from last year, with the tags still on them. In today’s pictures I am wearing:

  • Scoop-neck pink tee with tiny yellow specks
  • Skinny jeans cuffed at the ankle
  • Long “Warriors in Pink” decorative pink scarf tied at the neck. This was free from the Race for the Cure Breast Cancer Awareness Walk.
  • Brownish heels accented with a bow (these are ancient but oh so comfy)
  • Earrings, bracelet and blue glass ring

Another time-saver I take advantage of in the summer, is minimizing my makeup to only include, brows, eyeliner, mascara and lip color. After cleansing, exfoliating and using an SPF moisturizer on days when I’m just bumming around, I forego all makeup, throw on sunglasses and a pair of earrings then I’m ready to head out the door.

The power to choose is a marvelous thing, however at this stage in my life I don’t want or need a lot of extras. Giving away all but those things that I use, will help to simplify my life, save money, allow me to be content and restore my sanity. As I continue purging then finding an intern to assist me with time-intensive tasks I’m confident of clearing the cobwebs of my mind.

Have a wonderful day!! Oh and don’t forget to “like” my Facebook page in the sidebar and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. ~Steph