It’s Beginning to Look a Little Like Christmas

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The Christmas season has arrived…I’m just a littttle behind (shocker) with my decorating and my shopping…but I’ll be getting it together this week when my daughter comes home for the holidays. We always get a live tree and I’m so happy that in the new apartment I’ll be able to have a full-size one again. For the past five years I had to have sort of small narrow trees to fit in the space. But I love a big tree with tons of lights and ornaments and ribbons.

Here’s some trees we’ve had in past years…

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I’ll share this year’s tree once we have it up.

But in the meantime, I’m enjoying decorations around town and on other people’s houses. Most days I take a slight detour on my way home from work to go up and down a couple different streets to see the lights and decorations. I have many sweet memories of driving around the neighborhood with my mother, looking at Christmas decorations. I love when my daughter asks to do that with me now.

I think reading blogs are sort of like driving around looking at holiday decorations. You see things that you may not wear (or do) but it’s fun to see them on others. Whether they’re fashion blogs, or beauty, decorating, cooking, photography, crafting, etc., they’re such a nice way to get a glimpse into someone else’s life, passions and talents. Even if I don’t necessarily learn something, I still come away inspired or motivated to try something new or different. And sometimes (alright, a lot of the time) I just like looking at pretty pictures!

And onto this week’s outfit!

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While I love this color combo, the medium dark grey with the warm golden ochre color of this longline chenille cardigan, the too-long dress length really irks me! Isn’t it funny the difference just a couple inches can make??

Anyway, I’ve pulled the two colors together with this vintage skinny fringed scarf that was either my mother’s or sister’s, now I can’t recall. It’s 100% silk and drapes very nicely.

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I think I prefer a brown boot with these colors but I can’t zip my brown boots up these days!

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This is a super easy-to-wear, very comfy cozy outfit that I’m sure I’ll be wearing on repeat through the cold winter ahead!

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Do you like decorating for the holidays or do you have other special traditions, like baking or making presents for loved ones? I’d love to hear about them.

What I’m Wearing:

Believe it or not, I’m still plugging away with vlogmas…they may not be works of art (yet!) but you gotta give a girl credit for not giving up!

I’m linking up today with StyleSplash and her Style With A Smile link-up. Check out all the other bloggers linking up there!

Photography by Robert Mitchell Photography

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It’s Almost December!

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So! I have been toying with the idea of doing another 30-day challenge in January – which is challenging myself to wear a different outfit every day in January, but now I’m thinking that, instead, maybe I’ll do Vlogmas (vlogging every day in December leading up to Christmas)! I’m SO not prepared for that, but I’m a big believer in just jumping in first and figuring it out later…and vlogging Every Single Day will help me get up-to-speed on All Things Vloggy pretty darn quick!

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It could be awful..for me AND you, ha! But I think I’m going to give it a go…if I can’t do it, I can’t do it…but I’ll certainly give it the old college try. They’ll be short, maybe 5-10 minutes a day, more or less. So…I know you’re excited, ha ha! If you want to witness this, just subscribe to my Fashion Schlub YouTube channel.

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That aside, this is another day of tripod/remote shutter selfies. On this day, a man walked his dog up to where I was shooting and proceeded to ask questions about what I was doing, including “would you like to take a picture with Miss Wiggles?” Uh, OF COURSE!!!

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Then a town worker truck pulled up, and they knew one another, so THAT guy got out of the truck and started asking me questions about what I was doing…and then they both stood there watching me. AWKWARD. Suffice it to say I didn’t get too many pictures that day. And they’re really not doing this outfit justice, because I LOVE this potato sacky dress from ASOS Curve (their plus size section) and faux leather jacket by Chelsea & Theodore via Gwynnie Bee…and I loved them together. But I didn’t get to check my car window reflection between shots so my wig was wacky and the jacket was askew and my tights are dirty. But that’s real life, so. There ya go.

Speaking of Real Life, I’ve just uploaded another video, “Switching Out My Plus Size Wardrobe from Summer to Winter: Part 2,” wherein I get all my cold weather clothes out of storage, cull through them to decide what stays and what goes, and add the “stayers” into my closet. It’s scintillating stuff, be sure to watch.

What I Wore:

* Asos Navy Ripple Stitch Dress, size 22
* Chelsea & Theodore Taupe Drape Front Faux Leather Jacket, via Gwynnie Bee, size 2x

Today I’m linking up with A Labour of Life and her Labour of Fashion link-up party!

Week in Review: Week 92

Wow, another week has passed! Yes, this was a “short week” but I managed to squeeze more out of it. I’m feeling so good I’ve finally gotten back to unpacking (yes, I am still surrounded by boxes!) and reorganizing the space. AND keeping a thought towards making room for a Christmas tree soon!

So, while I just moved here in August, I’ve had some things in boxes for…8 years! Oh my goodness! I sold and moved out of my house (where I’d lived for 14 years) in October 2009, and some things have not been unpacked in all that time. So it’s always a surprise to open a box marked “Kitchen slash pottery slash metal things slash living room not vital,” because after all this time, who KNOWS what’s in there?!? It’s fun to see things again after so long.

This picture my daughter colored for me when she was little little, maybe 5 or 6? Thank goodness she signed her last name to it or I would never have known who it was from!

I found my old wedding album oh joy. Everyone looks so young. And pink. And poofy.

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And my niece and daughter…when she was still young enough that I could dress her as *I* wanted. I think I have this exact outfit now.

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Dime Savings Bank is very generously doing a campaign where they’re donating $10 to nonprofits when people post what they’re thankful for on social media along with the hashtag #DimeGivesBack and tagging the nonprofit of your choice. Obviously I’m supporting Nassau Suffolk Services for Autism, where I work.

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I couldn’t believe that Trader Joe’s had No. Fresh. Flowers. on Wednesday. Yes, I know it was the day before Thanksgiving, but still! I’ve never witnessed such a thing! For the record, I think Trader’s has The Best Selection of cut flowers at the best prices anywhere (except a wholesale market). They’re my go-to for flowers for the house and for gifts so this was a disappointment.

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On Thanksgiving Day I just hung out at home with the kids….

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Drinking tea and eating pie…

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Getting updates from my daughter, sister and nieces in South Carolina…

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From left to right: Niece, Grand-Niece, Daughter, Sister. Aren’t they all beautiful? I wish I could have been there with them. Maybe next time.

Late in the day we went for a ride (“IN THE CAR!” said Caleb excitedly)…

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To see the sunset.

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I had a friend over the next day for a post-Thanksgiving brunch. At 6pm.

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This morning I filled the kitchen with smoke…but look how pretty the light rays are coming through it from outside.

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And that’s my week! One holiday behind us, another one ahead. Have you started on Next Holiday Prep…whatever it might be?

Giving Thanks

It’s that time of year again where we’re reminded to be thankful for all that we have in our lives. Obviously that’s something we should be doing all year ’round but…we get busy, we have lives, demands on us, blah blah blah. And we forget. So I’m glad there’s a holiday. To remind us: Be Thankful.

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My Top Five Things to be Thankful For (sorry, My Top Five Things For Which I Am Thankful. Nope. Not doing it. I know its right. But I’m not doing it.)

  1. My health. After a difficult year, I am finally almost back to normal (well, health-wise, anyway).fashion schlub bettye rainwater plus size fashion blogger 11.12.17 4 resized
  2. The people who were so kind and thoughtful and helpful when I was sick this year. I felt an outpouring of love and support that I’ve never experienced before and for that I am thankful. Cuz I really needed it!fashion schlub bettye rainwater plus size fashion blogger 11.12.17 6 resized
  3. I’m so thankful that Caleb is still with me. Last year about this time I never would have expected it, but with the support of good friends and some miraculous meds, he’s still going. fashion schlub bettye rainwater plus size fashion blogger 11.12.17 2 resized
  4. I’m thankful that my daughter (while too far away from her Mama) is doing well. Well-employed, self-sufficient, making friends wherever she goes, traveling. She’s doing all right, that kid of mine. I’m so so proud of her.fashion schlub bettye rainwater plus size fashion blogger 11.12.17 8 resized
  5. I’m thankful for my new apartment…and hand-in-hand with that, for my friend who bought this house and invited me to move here. I feel so so good here. It’s a wonderful sanctuary.

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What are *you* thankful for??

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This is a perfect “just slightly chilly” fall outfit. The floral top is a sleeveless summer top that is always flattering as it does not cling to lumps and bumps, it hangs away from the body slightly, which is perfect if you have a bit of a tummy. The duster cardigan is a lightweight fleece that is cozy but not too warm. Skinny jeans and taupe booties round out this easy-to-wear outfit.

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What I’m Wearing

Thanks to my friend/landlady/photographer Karen for taking these pictures!

I’m linking up today with Emma Peach over at Style Splash for her “Style with a Smile” linkup – go take a look at her site for great style ideas for us…uhm…EXPERIENCED ladies 🙂 as well as all the other linked-up blogs!

Week in Review: Week 91

Well, better than last week but still not a ton of excitement.

More wig photos. Can’t stop won’t stop.

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Got my wireless shutter release to “help” with selfies. Ack.

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Actually, in the end, it had to go back cuz it didn’t have the right cable for my camera. I’ve already got the new one.

This week’s Gwynnie Bee. Uhm, no. I love it in theory. But it’s just too…too everything on me. It’s gone back and I already have the replacement.

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I’ve actually been feeling a little energetic and like I *want* to walk! So Caleb and I went for a very slow walk around our very small block (it’s only .3mile around). My feet were hurting, but *he* was really really struggling near the end. He just can’t do outings anymore like he used to. Anyway, there are so many pretty houses in this area.

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That one reminded me of mine and my husband’s second house, The Money Pit. I LOVED that house. But. We just couldn’t stay there long.

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I love graphic tees. I just don’t like the sayings I always see in the stores. I mean, they’re fine and all, but it’s not what *I* want to wear on *my* body. But this one caught my eye on Instagram. If only it came in plus sizes.

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I’m still looking for several pieces of furniture for the apartment so I can finally finish unpacking! One is a bedroom dresser – wider than high, vintage but not fancy, doesn’t have to be perfect, but. I liked this one at the thrift store but…SIX HUNDRED NINETY-EIGHT DOLLARS?!? Are they INSANE?? It’s pretty and all but not in good condition, look at all the missing veneer on the top right edge and along the bottom. Sheesh.

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My boy went to the groomer yesterday and got his hairs did and now he is very handsome. He’s showing off to the passers-by on the street.

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I came across this picture from November 2014. I miss being able to go on outings and adventures with him.

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And this was a very nice quiet weekend. I’ve been doing some more unpacking and a little cleaning, going through old photos…just random productive things but taking it slow. It feels good to finally be able to do things and not be exhausted after just a few minutes.

OH, I went to the dr this week for my 2-month checkup. My blood levels are almost back to normal, which I could tell by the way I feel…but I told him about my feet and how they were still really bothersome with the neuropathy. He prescribed something and I’m 3 days on it and feel no difference yet. Guh. Anyway, I go back in March for scans to make sure I’m still all clean in there.

A short week ahead with the holiday, so yay. Do you have Thanksgiving plans?

 

Week in Review: Week 87

Feeling better every week so I’m getting out more and back to my normal activities, YAY.

Last Sunday some friends and I drove up to Tarrytown, NY to visit Lyndhurst Castle and the Tarrytown/Sleepy Hollow lighthouse.

Of course we needed trip snacks.

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Lyndhurst Castle

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There was a lot of walking. I can keep going if I can keep stopping to rest.

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Wooohoooowoooo

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The long walk to the lighthouse was worth it.

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I was terrified at walking across this bridge. Bridges not my thing. When I drive over them I have to stay really focused on NOT steering the car over the edge. It’s weird. Does anyone else have that? Walking across not much better, especially when they’re these grate-bottomed ones that you can see through. Terr. If. Fying. But I did it!

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Got this Lucky Brand dress from Gwynnie Bee on Monday. Nope. It was cute but overall too small. I felt like I was wearing a little girl’s dress. Back it went and had another one in a couple days.

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Managed to get one Outfit of the Day posted on Instagram. I still haven’t figured out the good photo spots in the apartment so I haven’t done many OOTDs since I’ve been here.

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Went in search of sunset and/or foliage a couple afternoons.

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One day Caleb and I went to a new place but the trail started out as SUCH a narrow rocky steep hill that it was really challenging for us both…and we finally reached a point where he was just DONE. His butt plunked down on the ground and he wouldn’t or couldn’t get up. I got a little scared thinking what if I have to carry this dog back down that hill?? I sat down and rested with him for a bit then I managed to get him up and turned around and we descended VERY slowly. It was a little harrowing for us both but we survived. A little further down that same road we found a spot a little better suited to our needs and we just sat on the beach til the sky turned pink then we went home.

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Ooh! My ThredUp purchase arrived! Excited to try it on later…

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Trying to soak up the last bits of afternoon daylight before we set the clocks back in a few weeks. Can anyone tell me WHY we still change the clocks for Daylight Savings Time??

Bettye xoxo

 

Cardigans Are a Girl’s Best Friend

Okay, first of all, forgive me as I have selfied. I had no available photographer this week so I figured out I could use a light stand as a tripod workaround. I always lose the little piece on the tripod that attaches the camera to the tripod, rendering said tripod useless. But the hard part of selfies isn’t where to put the camera or how to take the picture from umpteen feet away…it’s how to get yourself in focus!!! So, my apologies in advance for a high percentage of not-quite-in-focus pictures.

That said…I really enjoyed wearing this Karen Kane floral dress from Gwynnie Bee…BUT it was only wearable with a cardi over top. It was a little too clingy to my hip bumps and my tummy on its own…but a cardigan is magic and just glides right over those things and you’d never know there were any problem areas at all!

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Aforementioned hip bumps…not quite as evident in the photo, but trust me, they’re there.

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And tummy…

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But with the cardigan all that just disappears…

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Interestingly, my friend Julia over at When the Girls Rule just posted today about a top she calls “the fixer.” And I think a loose-fitting cardigan falls into the category of “fixer,” as it fixes whatever’s underneath. I’m borrowing your term, Julia, cuz it’s brilliant! 

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So if you have something that seems a little too snug for you in spots, don’t necessarily discount it. If you love it, you can “fix it” with a loose cardigan over top.

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Plus, they’re wonderful for extending your summer wardrobe into the cooler months of fall. I’d had this dress in my Gwynnie Bee closet for some time, and it just arrived now in the middle of October. Layering the cardigan over it made it autumnal!

Speaking of autumnal, just some borrowed scenes from my girlfriend’s front porch…

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What I Wore:

  • Karen Kane floral dress via Gwynnie Bee, 24
  • Old Navy black duster cardigan, 2x
  • Hat from Headcovers Unlimited

Week in Review: Week 85

Well, I’m finally starting to feel a little better…so I can get out a little more and not end up so house-bound and cranky!

It’s so good to have near-by places that I can get to in just a few minutes and see something pretty or just people- or dog-watch. This is a VERY doggy town! Anyway, I caught the local crew team finishing up their practice just before sunset.

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Caleb got to stroll around a bit. It’s harder now to let him off lead as he’s so deaf that he doesn’t hear me call him and he’s so dotty that he forgets to look for me and just wanders off. So it was nice that he was able to have a few minutes of freedom on this deserted spot on the beach.

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Another day we tried to catch sight of the harvest moon as it rose up over the horizon. It’s always a guessing game as to where the best spot will be. I still think this is a good spot but it was so cloudy that the moon didn’t show anywhere til it was high in the sky much later.

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My friend and I went to a lake to try and get some pretty sunset shots but it was a very nothing sky. So we did an Outfit of the Day instead and then went to Denny’s for brinner. Man, do I look tired!

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Loft dress, Old Navy cardigan, Vionics shoes, vintage scarf

Friday night I went to our work event “A Special Night for Our Special Kids” to take pictures for our blog and newsletter. An entire amusement park is closed to the public for the evening and is open to families with children (and adults) with autism. The park is less crowded, quieter, lines are shorter or nonexistsent – all to make a nicer time for these kids for whom noise, crowds, waiting, etc., can be a real challenge.

 

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Saturday I planned a custom tour for myself of Red Hook, Brooklyn. I really needed to get out of Dodge but I still can’t do a lot of walking, so I planned in lots of little stops where I could drive to The Thing, walk just a short distance to The Thing, then go back to the car to do the next thing. It was perfect. Red Hook is a small, quietish, waterfront neighborhood in Brooklyn. There are no subway stops there so there’s less hustle and bustle than other areas.

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There’s a couple good street art areas…

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Some nice gardens…

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A little garden space at Pioneer Works, a multi-cultural space, with plantings to attract wildlife.

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Some very interesting homes. I love how the one shutter on the window is actually the twin towers.

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This was my schlubby outfit of the day. Oofah those pants are horrendous. But so comfortable.

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I got a key lime pie. I’ve never even HAD key lime pie so I’m not sure what possessed me. I just had to have it. It’s very good but too tart to ever be a favorite of mine.

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Views of the Statue of Liberty.

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And great sunset views.

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And yesterday I was exhausted and barely moved! But it was a good exhausted cuz I’d had fun the day before. Today I’m off for Columbus Day and the goal is to get a few more boxes unpacked and things put away and organized. My body is saying NO! NO GOALS! SOFA! But…I’ll try to do SOMETHING productive.

Hope y’all are enjoying the three-day weekend and have a good week ahead.

Bettye xoxo

Week in Review: Week 82

Another pretty quiet week. I didn’t do much, BUT, I did do an apartment update video so you can see what I’ve been up to in the past 3 weeks (not much, ha!). The video is at the end.

I won a $100 on a birthday scratch-off! Yay. This replaced the money I spent the day I had the tire blowout: Used Tire + New Valve came to exactly $100, so.

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Met some friends for dinner, but first we went to the lake for some pictures…and I actually got to see a little bit of a sunset.

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The Fried Who Shall Remain Nameless took an Outfit of the Day pic for me and I got a little silly.

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Jane.

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Yesterday I had my last chemo treatment, woohoo! I’ve got horrible chemo acne right now, so that’s lovely. But the dr said I should start feeling normal again in 5-6 weeks so I’m really really looking forward to that!

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And that was my week. But if you’re interested in an apartment update, here’s a little video for you…

Have a good week, y’all!

Bettye xoxo

Week in Review: Week 79

Phew! THAT was a week! I finished up packing (just barely), had chemo #3 of 4, and moved to the new apartment. All hands were on deck for moving day so things went very smoothly, for which I’m grateful.



I’m on the hunt for a new office chair. Could this be it??

Ready to cash in the coin jar. How much do you think is in here??

My handsome nephew helped move my old sofa to the dump, yay!


And we’re in the new place!


The day after moving was a rest day…and today my daughter and I spent the day together, not doing anything packing or cancer related. It was really nice. 



And now my legs are screaming from doing too much today but it was so nice to just get away for a little bit. Unpacking can wait.