My 10 Favorite Outfits of 2017

AKA It Was Too Cold Last Week to Get a New Outfit Photographed (if I’m being honest) So Let Me Recycle Some from Last Year. In my defense there WAS a snow bombogenesis cyclone, or whatever they ended up calling it. Translation: there was a lot of snow, a LOT of wind, and temperatures in the single digits all week. I thought I would be able to make some new outfits out of the items from last week’s winter haul, but in reality I sent everything back except one thing – that’s a conversation for another day. So, blah blah blah, I have nothing new to post this week. But I do like taking a look back over the past year and revisiting my outfits, sharing with you what worked or didn’t work for me. So. That’s what I’m gonna do!

#10 – Old Navy striped dress with Charlotte Russe tencel button-down and my beloved Superga velcro sneakers. I love an easy outfit. I love stripes. I love this tencel blouse over just about anything. Win win win.

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#9 – Hey look, the tencel button-down again! This time with a grey long sleeved tee from Avenue and this amazing Lucky Brand cardigan (rented from Gwynnie Bee), over Charlotte Russe cropped skinny jeans. I love the concept of layering, and it looks so great on slim straight bodies. I have a hard time making it work right, or look right to me, on ME. Still, this was a good attempt.

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#8 – This time I’m repeating the Charlotte Russe skinny jeans…now with a white linen blend tee from J. Jill and a dreamy Johnny Was kimono rented via Gwynnie Bee. This kimono was so so pretty.

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#7 – Hey, guess what I’m wearing again? The Charlotte Russe skinny jeans and the linen blend tee from J. Jill. This time with a lightweight cardigan from Torrid. And my Supergas. First day wearing them. And I fell on a hill and almost rolled into the pond in them!

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#6 – Ah, the much-loved (and much-worn!) magic black (or maybe it’s black magic!) swing dress from Asos…with the much sought-after denim jacket from JC Penneys, a borrowed leopard scarf, my Gorjana hoop earrings from Nordstrom, with lined footless tights from Maurice’s and black booties from Avenue. Super comfy and can go just about anywhere.

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#5 – Another Old Navy jersey knit dress with the ochre chenille cardigan from Target that I am UB-SESSED with. The color is amazing, it’s super soft and cozy…and the length is perfect for dresses or pants. Same tights and boots as above.  Vintage Echo scarf that belonged to my mother. Thanks, Mommy!


#4 – A super cute botanical print top by Junarose from PlusBKLYN under olive green fleece cardigan from Rainbow, black leggings by Faded Glory from Walmart, with my comfiest sneakers from Adidas.

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#3 – Uh-huh. I wore a dress that looks like vintage Christmas wrapping paper. I’m a real bad-ass. Come on – how cute is it?? The dress is from Cow Cow, the black cardi is Old Navy…tights and booties same as above.

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#2 – Nothing dramatic here, but a solid pulled together look that I’ll wear a gazillion times. Old Navy striped jersey knit dress (yes, I have a lot of them!), Old Navy cardigan, golden mustard scarf from TJ Maxx, otk boots from Avenue.

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And my #1 Favorite Outfit of 2017 is this amazing bird print dress by Junarose, from PlusBKLYN. I know this isn’t much of an “outfit,” it’s just a stand-alone dress. But that’s what makes it So Perfect!

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I’m sure you noticed there’s a lot of repetition among my favorite outfits. I’m grateful to have so many pieces I like enough to wear repeatedly! I feel like I’ve chosen well when something gets a lot of wear.

I’m not putting links to the items cuz they’re all old and out of stock (well, the two Junarose items might still be available on the PlusBKLYN site – they were still there the last time I browsed there). But they’re mostly such basic items, each of the mentioned sites probably has something extremely similar.

Thanks for taking the little walk down memory lane with me!



Resolutions + Plus Size Try-on Haul Video

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I’m still working on my resolutions for the new year. I’m not usually a hard-and-fast resolution sorta gal; I usually pick a fun thing I want to challenge myself to do more of – like drink more or wear more jewelry, ha ha. But after 2017 I do sort of feel like I need to get some things in order. I need to get PREPARED. That’s one of the resolutions, but I’m still fine-tuning (that seems to be a recurrent theme of the new year also) it and most of them…but the one I’m certain of is…to pamper myself.

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To have flowers in the house, go for mani-pedis and foot massages and get my hair done when I have hair again. Have a facial. Not just pampering, but being kind and gentle with myself. Last year was a hard year. It was painful and exhausting and took a lot out of me. I need to feed myself and care for myself and build my mind and heart back up. Get a comfortable sofa so I can relax and read and enjoy looking out the window. Ask friends for help when things are too hard. Eat good food. Be Good to my body. Nourish it, stretch it, exercise it. Rest it. If I need to sleep all day once in a while, do that without feeling guilty. Make my home more pleasing. Empty the corners of boxes and piles of stuff. Create lovely vignettes to enjoy when I come home. Live in silence when I want, live in music when I want. Just be good to myself.
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I’m still working out the technicalities on this one, but one year (I think 2011) I did “Do Something New Every Week,” and that was really a good one but it was more Big Picture things, like “do a 5k,” “get reiki.” etc. I think this year I might do a “Try Something New Every Day” resolution. I know that sounds imposing but they can be Very Small Things: go to a new bagel shop, turn down a different street when driving home, make a new recipe, try on a pair of shoes you wouldn’t normally try. It’s just the point of keeping your mind open to new and untried things rather than being comfortable and settled in routine.
That’s it for resolutions for now…and onto something NEW and exciting that got its start in 2017 but just went live in 2018 – and that is that my new blog-friend Nancy of Nancy’s Fashion Style shared Fashion Schlub as one of her “Styled By…” posts! I’ve been reading such nice comments from her regular readers, I’m so grateful to her! Be sure to take a look at her blog – she has such an adventurous and fun fashion sense – I think you’ll really enjoy her blog – AND she’s a sweetheart, to boot!


And this week’s weekly vlog is a plus size winter try-on haul showing clothes from Old Navy, Woman Within and Charlotte Russe. Take a look and let me know what you think – I think my videoing and editing skills are getting a little better!

All photography by me.

IS Imitation the Sincerest Form of Flattery??

So, a couple weeks back, Julia at When the Girls Rule posted a photo on her Instagram of this look…


…and I commented that I liked it so much that I was going to steal it (and she said she was waiting to see it). And I did!

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I didn’t have a wine scarf or a gold bag…but I DID have a gold scarf, so I improvised there. But otherwise, I was able to pretty well replicate the look that I liked so much on her, with clothes from my own closet, with my own spin. I was inspired by her outfit.

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I think sometimes in fashion (and blogging…and photography…and really any creative endeavor) there is a fine line between inspiration and imitation. If I’d gone out and bought the same dress and bag and scarf and created an exact duplicate of her outfit, that’s imitation…and these days I don’t know that most people are all that flattered by that (imitation may not be the sincerest form of flattery) imitation. In fact, in most applications, direct imitation is a form of copyright infringement! It would be pretty hard to prove anyone guilty of that in retail fashion, I mean, all the stores sell all the same things, eventually you’re going to have some pretty similar outfits out there, purely coincidentally….but you get the point.

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While it’s nice to look to others for inspiration (and to copy someone for fun, as I did here), it’s best to use your own creativity–don’t just copy someone else’s look, create your own! Do you!!!

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This is a favorite easy-to-wear dress from Old Navy, in it’s second winter with me. It goes with a lot of other items in my closet. The black duster cardigan is also from Old Navy, but this current season and still available – it’s a fine knit, so very lightweight. With pockets!

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The scarf and crossbody bag are from TJ Maxx, last season. The over-the-knee boots are from Avenue, two winters ago. I’m really getting my money’s worth out of all these things!

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I wore my new Gorjana G Ring hoop earrings from Nordstrom. I have been coveting these exact earrings for a lonnng time – well over a year, maybe even two. I first saw them on Joanna Gaines on Fixer Upper and loved the movement the hoops had – you know how hoops are usually sort of still and fixed in place on your ear? Because these hoops are hanging on the S-hook thingie that goes through your ear, there’s a lot of movement and I really like that. I never ever buy myself nice jewelry but I’ve been watching these for a long time and they finally went on sale on Black Friday and I snatched those babies right up!

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I shot with a new photographer this day, I’m really happy with the pictures – what do you think?

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Also, I’m still doing Vlogmas every day on my YouTube channel. I realized today from trying to film “the interesting parts of my day,” that most days do not have interesting parts! Not this time of year, anyway. In spring summer fall I get out a lot more and it would be much more fun to watch. Today the big excitement was scraping ice off the windshield, Caleb making new friends at the park, and new packages in the mail. But…hey, I’m giving it a shot. Stick around, maybe something good will happen eventually!

Photography by Robert Mitchell Photography.

ANNND…I’m linking up with the #IWillWearWhatILike linkup on Not Dressed as Lamb. Definitely take a look at the other bloggers sharing things – you might might find a new favorite!

Week in Review: Week 90

Wow, the time change last weekend really threw me for a loop! It’s amazing what a difference an hour can make! I’m home from work by 4:25-4:30…and I think most every day this past week I was in my nightgown and cooking dinner by 4:45! I was ready for bed by 7pm. Ha. And I gave myself a week to just go with it. So, my apologies for being totally absent for a week. I just couldn’t get myself going. At all.

I feel like I’ve somehow missed so much “leaf peeping” this autumn…so I’m trying to get out on my lunch break from work a couple times a week just to see some prettiness before it’s all gone. In this outfit I sorta felt like *I* was autumn foliage!

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Floral top from Bobeau; rust fleece cardigan from Rainbow shops; jeans from Charlotte Russe; vintage headscarf

I did manage to see the tail end of sunset one evening when I raced straight to the harbor before even going home. I felt guilty going without Caleb 😦

sunset, boats, sky, harbor, northport, northport harbor

If you watched my plus size Fall Haul vlog on YouTube a week ago you’ll know I *planned* to send this Old Navy dress back, as much as I love it, because it was a little “hip bump clingier” than I like. BUT, once I tried it with the black cardigan, I decided to keep it. And I’m glad I did. It *does* need an old school full slip underneath as the brushed cotton fabric is going to really stick to tights once it gets a little colder.

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Plaid dress from Old Navy; black duster cardigan from Old Navy; oatmeal cotton cloche from Headcovers Unlimited

I did manage to get out one evening to see a documentary called “Swim Team” with some friends, about a swim team in New Jersey made up solely of young adults on the autism spectrum. The film covered their challenges, struggles and successes. It was very sensitively done and really a nice film. The film-maker was there at the screening to answer questions so that’s always an added bonus.

swim team

It’s been a long weekend for me. And I STILL hardly did anything, ha! I’d had plans to do some blog shooting with a friend on Friday but when I woke up that morning it was like a mini polar vortex had swept in over night and I made the executive decision that NOPE, we were not going to stand outside all day in the freezing cold, taking pictures of one another.

OH – another little exciting thing happened this week for me…but you’ll have to wait til Tuesday’s blog post to find out about that. Heh heh heh. Don’t’cha hate when someone says, “I have a surprise for you…but I’m not going to tell you what it is” ??

Here’s hoping for a more productive week ahead! Did you guys get as set-back with the time change as I did??

What I Wore This Week

It was one of those autumn weeks that ranges from 70 one day to 50 the next! Add to that the fact that we had a power outage in our area for almost 48 hours on the two coldest days, and I got a chill I couldn’t get rid of! Suffice it to say the plan for my weeks’ wardrobe went out the window and I found myself pulling from the fall/winter bin before I’ve officially changed my wardrobe from summer to fall.

Monday: Junarose Tie-Dye Blue Dress from plusBKLYN; Avenue Thermal Knit Waterfall Hoodie (old; similar here and here); cotton bandana.

Tuesday: Cat in the Hat hat, borrowed :-); Avenue cream long-sleeved tee (old, similar here); Old Navy black longline duster cardigan (sold out, similar here).

Wednesday: Karen Kane polkadot plus size swing dress (old, similar here or here); Rainbow burgundy fleece longline cardigan; vintage headscarf.

Thursday: Torrid plus size grey spacedye longline sharkbite cardi (old, similar here); JJill woman’s white linen blend tee (old, similar here); Charlotte Russe skintight legging jeans (similar here); vintage headscarf.

Friday: Junarose plus size abstract bird print dress (old, similar here); Oatmeal cardi (old, similar here); Oatmeal cotton chemo cloche by Headcovers Unlimited (old, similar here).

What are you wearing now at the beginning of November? Still in warm weather clothes, all the way into cold weather clothes…or somewhere in-between??

2017 Plus Size Fall Haul #1 (with video!)

I finally bit the bullet and purchased some new plus size fall wardrobe items online…and I thought I’d share with you my thoughts about the items I got.

I purchased items from online shopping sites: Full Beauty/Woman Within/Jessica London, Forever 21, Asos, Thred-Up, Rainbow Shops, Gwynnie Bee and Old Navy. These are all in size 2x or 3x. It wasn’t such a successful shop and most of the items have already been returned…and as soon as I get all my refunds I’ll give it another try.

I rant a bit about spending money on “basics,” when they’re really so simple and invisible…and about brands using inconsistent sizing.

I apologize for it being SO so long. I considered cutting it in half and doing a Part 1 and Part 2, but….let’s just move on with it, shall we?

I spent almost the entire day last Saturday recording this fall haul; this vlog stuff has a steep learning curve! It took me so long, by the last couple of outfits the video is so dark you can barely see the color of the items I’m wearing! I also committed the cardinal sin of videoing, which is filming in portrait orientation (instead of landscape) – GAH! I’m having some video/photography challenges in the new apartment still, so bear with me while I get my space and lighting figured out!

If you have any questions about the items, please comment here or in the comments section underneath the video.

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

Keeping It Simple

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I’ve been keeping my life very simple lately. Work, treatment, home. That’s pretty much every day. Sometimes during the day I THINK I will go home and accomplish One Thing – wash the dishes or sweep the floor, etc. But no. By the time I get there I’m so shot that I get almost immediately into my nightgown and head to the sofa. I’m not even reading or watching tv, I’m just…resting.

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So this kind of outfit is my mainstay right now. A simple base with something over top. Easy peasy.

This dress is so easy to wear. It’s a rayon spandex blend that’s stretchy and swingy and feels like silky cotton. The blouse is Tencel which is a drapey lightweight denimy material. Both fabrics are very comfortable to wear.

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Fashion doesn’t always have to be fussy or fancy. It can be easy and relaxed and comfortable…and that is totally my jam these days.

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I’m kind of liking my life like this. I feel like the beginning of the year started with so much drama that I’m enjoying this simple time. Kind of weird, right? I never feel good anymore, I’m always exhausted, but overall, life feels good. Count on me to be contrary 🙂

What I’m Wearing

Photos by Marcy of Fearlessly Just Me – thanks, Marce! Make sure you check out her blog cuz she is a  BOSS!!!

Week in Review: Week 61

Was a pretty full and busy week – had several doctory appointments, went to dinner with friends two nights, had a little photo shoot, work is getting busier…

But we started the week with Easter at the Ex’es. I went to meet the new horse, Harley (spotted horse on the right)…and Amaretto (“Retto”) on the left.


And said hello to Beau (horse) and Rosie and the goat whose name is NOT Cinnamon but that’s the only name I can ever THINK of for her. Wait, Ginger? Is it Ginger? It might be Ginger. Anyway, this is Rosie in the pic.


Caleb got a little goody bag to take home after dinner 🙂  Did you notice he has the same color and markings as Rosie??


Monday’s outfit of the day. Or is that what I wore to Easter dinner? I forget. Wow.


Had a meeting with a social worker at Sloan-Kettering to see what kind of helpful services and programs they have. But I jumped the gun a bit as you can’t really apply to anything til you’re actually in treatment and have accrued $300 in co-pays. Which I have, just not with THEM. But I got applications to fill out so I’m all ready when the time comes. Everytime I go there’s something new blooming at the entrance.


Wednesday’s outfit of the day. A second season dress from Alice & You and a sleeveless knit duster from CityChic. Both items via Gwynnie Bee. Maybe it’s time to say bye-bye to Hello Kitty. Goodbye Kitty?


Had a follow-up visit to the blood doctor. They found a blood clot when I was in the hospital…it partially divided and became several blood clots in my lungs as well. So I’ve been on blood thinners and had a clot filter inserted prior to surgery. Which they now want to remove. THROUGH MY NECK. Gah. That just sounds horrible. I feel the medical profession as a whole could endeavor to make things a LITTLE more fun. I don’t know how, but they’re the ones making the big bucks, let THEM figure it out.


My cousin sent me this picture of my mother as a baby. I think it’s hysterical! She was born in 1922.


A package arrived from Old Navy. I’d been so excited for these items but….MEH. I’ve seen the blue floral off-the-shoulder (OTS) dress on a couple bloggers and was just in love with it…until I put it on. I knew it was a questionable choice for me because of the elastic waist. And sure enough it was just not right and I felt very fidgetty in it, constantly fussing with the waist. The OTS part was also not cooperative and I don’t even OWN a strapless bra (oh my gosh the dog just burped in his sleep and it sounded like a child said “hi”) so what was I even thinking?? It was a size 4x. I’m still addicted to striped tops and am looking for a new favorite. This was not it. Too big in the chest and shoulders, too snug at the hips. Sigh. Story of my  life. Size 4x. And I’m looking for a couple pairs of slouchy (BUT NOT SLOPPY!!!) soft fabric, like a rayon or linen blend or tencel, ankle length pants for summer. These linen blend 4x pants were just too big. I couldn’t tie them tight enough to keep them from slipping down my hips. The last dress, the mustard yellow dress is just like the light blue Tencel “nightgown” dress I had from last year…but it’s more of a gauzey rayon and a little snugger fit. Size 4x. Pass. Everything is already on its way back to Old Navy and the search continues. I can spend the same $100 on clothes for MONTHS, buying and returning, lather, rinse, repeat.


And last (lastly?) I paid a visit yesterday to the podiatrist, FINALLY, after suffering with heel pain for almost 8 months. I’ve done the stretching exercises. I’ve rolled my foot over the golf ball and frozen water bottle. I was “off my feet” for as much as I could probably ever be between my time in the hospital and then recovering at home after the surgery. I’ve iced it. I went to physical therapy three times for stretching, massage, laser treatments and electronic stimulation. And it’s been 8 months and the pain is bad and not getting better. He took a digital x-ray which showed a heel spur and inflammation, gave me a cortisone shot (youch) and then wrapped my foot up with this cushiony pad and said to leave it on for three days. It’s already off. Ha. It was SO tight, it was as uncomfortable as the heel pain! I’m going to say the edge is off the heel pain but it’s not entirely gone. I also haven’t walked a lot since. He said it could be 4-5 days before it takes full effect. And I go back Friday to follow-up and get another shot if needed.


And now it’s the weekend YAY. I have errands and apartment cleaning planned for today…and something FUN planned for tomorrow. And when I say PLANNED I mean, we plan to have FUN, we haven’t actually planned yet what exactly we’re doing. So it’s still a surprise.

What do YOU have planned for the weekend? And have any of you ever had success with ANY sort of treatment for heel pain/spurs?

Week in Review: Week 59

It is a sunny but still windy and cool day here on Long Island. I have a day filled with running errands, cleaning out my disgusting car, taking the dog (and me) somewhere for a walk and change of scenery, then a quiet evening with a movie and early to bed. The best news this week, I doubt I’ve ever mentioned my ^&%#! insomnia here, but it’s been EVEN worse since the surgery – as though things have shifted around and when I lay down something presses on my bladder and makes the worst ache if I do not wake up immediately to get up and pee. And getting in and out of bed is still enough of a process that it wakes me up even more, UGH. But the GOOD NEWS part is that just two nights ago I was actually able to lay for a little bit on my side again! I’m a side sleeper, but I’ve only been able to be on my back since the surgery 3½ weeks ago, so WHAT a relief to finally have a little bit of normalcy and comfort. In Medical-Land, so many things seem to take so much longer to return to normal than you think they should. So Yay.

I went back to work this week for a full week. My wonderful officemates Tori and Jen had decorated my desk with balloons and banners and there was a little “nest” of goodies on my desk – they are just the sweetest. I’m so fortunate to get to spend my work days with them.


While I’m not feeling especially energetic, I’m powering through and trying to walk every other day. My baby step regimen is:

Week 1: Walk 5 minutes out and 5 minutes back for a total of 10 minutes

Week 2: Walk 6 minutes out and 6 minutes back for a total of 12 minutes

Week 3: Walk 7 minutes out and 7 minutes back for a total of 14 minutes

You get the picture. Monday will start Week 3. I’m very slowly working up to walks of 20 then 30 minutes. I may back-slide during chemo, I’ll just have to wait and see how I feel then. But at least it’s a schedule that I’m adhering to. And I am walking S-L-O-O-O-W. My heel still hurts and that keeps me slowed down as well. Caleb likes the walks when we’re somewhere he can be offlead and sniff around at his leisure. In his old age he’s gone pretty deaf so I can’t let him offlead when we’re anywhere near anything, like a road or people or other dogs, cuz he just doesn’t hear me calling him. And I think there’s a little senility as he just sort of wanders off and then loses track of where I am. Because it doesn’t seem to occur to him to turn his head to the right or left to look for me. It’s sad to watch someone you love get old.


A dear friend did this cross-stitch for me, “What Cancer Cannot Do.” That was a lovely surprise to get in the mail this week.


Caleb: Master of His Domain. He needs a good bath and haircut. But he loves the big tuffet that his Uncle Russell got for him.


And just to keep this at least a LITTLE fashiony…here is a try-on of an outfit I ordered from Old Navy…that sadly will be going back. Old Navy plus size sizing is so all-over-the-place. Sometimes things are ginormous on me and sometimes they’re way too snug. These are really soft rayon blush cropped pants in a 3x and I couldn’t even zip them up. Part of that could be a little vestigial swelling still left around my abdomen and hips, though they’re feeling pretty normal again. And the top was also snug around the same area, while too loose in the bust. I’m really short on warm weather outfits and the flurry of ordering and returning continues until I hit on a couple wins.


My niece sent me this book by Sarah Addison Allen – has anyone read it?


This is a pic my daughter just sent me from while she was here and walked down a bit of beach to see the sunset. It’s just a nice memory of being with her and being OUTSIDE after being cooped up in the hospital for so long.


So, in other news, I have had both the radiation and chemo consults with my “original” team – the doctors associated with my surgeon’s office. On Monday I have a consult scheduled with Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center to see what, if anything, they would do differently…and then I have to make the decision of who to go with so we can get this show on the road. It’s hard to make the decision because I can already see that I will not necessarily be comparing apples to apples. So wish me luck!

And Great News – I’m actually doing a photoshoot tomorrow! Yippee. Will feel good to be “blog productive” again. So you can look forward to a springy outfit post later this week.

Thanks for all your comments, emails, and kind words – I really appreciate them.