Week in Review: Week 60

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The week started off with consults at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center for a second opinion on my situation and treatment going forward. I’m finally learning that “consult” doesn’t mean sitting in a civilized wood-paneled office, a desk away from a doctor, tissues at hand (like on TV)…but instead “get undressed and put on this gown and the dr will SEE you in a few minutes.” I’ve learned to wear loose-fitting dresses so I can by-pass the gown (how smart am I?) but I haven’t figured out how to avoid the endless stream of EXAMS. Ugh. “Hello, I’m Dr. Smith, nice to meetcha, now skootch down and spread your legs.” Hello to you, too.

Anyway, I was pleased with both the doctors, their treatment plan was pretty different than the first place (though they both had very good explanations for why they’d do things their way), and everything moved along at a good pace. Which is very important to me as I don’t want to be spending my summer waiting in a treatment center. I want to get in, get out, and go see a sunset, thank you very much.

Final decision has not been made yet.

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National Sibling Day was this week. That’s me (the short one in baggy ruffled tights) and my sister (the tall pretty one who is looking very Gidget-esque).

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Tuesday afternoon we headed down to a charter boat marina to do some blog pictures. It felt good to be out in the air and be doing a photo shoot.

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I wanted to show you my cute new EASY TO PUT ON sneakers but the dog wanted in the shot. I think it’s time to unmake the bed-sofa.

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Wednesday morning it was BACK to Sloan for a ct-scan. I drank the kool aid. I failed the test. After all the drinking, waiting, changing, trying to get an IV in me (I have tough veins), etc…they got the first picture then the two ladies came hurrying into the scan room where I was and said, “uh, hun, you still have your bra on!” Damn. I was so distracted by “where do I go next?” as I was changing into THE DREADED GOWN that I totally blanked on taking off my bra. Duh. They’d already gotten the first pic so now I couldn’t move, so I had two women, one on each side of me, trying to remove my bra without me moving. Someone should have taken a picture of THAT.

PS, the contrast dye they injected into me for the scan changed my taste buds for three days and everything tasted horrible. Someone should figure out how to market that as a weight loss aid. If eating Doritos is no more enjoyable than eating lettuce, well…

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There was a pretty little gifty in my grocery cart.

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Thursday night I worked our Adventureland event. Twice a year we rent out the amusement park and it’s closed to the general public and made available just to families of kids and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities. It. Almost. Always. Rains. or at least threatens. But this night was PERFECT and we had a TON of happy people going on rides, playing arcade games and eating cotton candy. This picture was taken as the event prior to ours was just closing out, that’s why it looks so empty.

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I’m a little teapot….

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The next morning I was verrrrry tired and was wishing I could just climb on the tuffet with Caleb and Jane instead of going to work.

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Got my second wind by late afternoon and picked up a friend (this is her backyard, can you even?) to go to the movies. We saw Going in Style with Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Alan Arkin. Ann Margaret was in it a bit and OHMYGOD she looks UH-MAZING. She’s 76, she looks better than I do. She looks better than MOST people do, ha. The movie was cute.

And now it’s Saturday. I have no plans. Wanna do something??

Simple Formula for Umpteen Outfits!

How many is umpteen? A LOT!

Like my favorite summer dress (seen here), an “invisible uniform” is a wonderful thing to have. Over the summer it was a simple black dress. Now in the fall it’s black leggings and a black tunic top. That’s the base. It’s comfy, it’s easy…and it’s invisible. It’s so…unremarkable…that people really won’t notice if you wear it again and again. It’s what you wear *with it* that makes it an outfit.

In this case, for fall, I’m layering several lightweight pieces over the base.

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A lightweight chambray tunic from Avenue creates one look…

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An army green rayon waterfall vest from Target creates another.

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And lastly, a faux suede fringed Cuprio vest over a chambray blouse from Target makes up a third look. I would also wear the vest alone over the leggings and tunics but I was trying to see how many looks I could create from my closet.

The only “rule” I give this, is the “over” piece should be at least as long as, if not longer than, the tunic.

As the weather gets colder I can switch out the thin leggings and flats for black skinny jeans and booties or knee-high boots and cozy long cardigans. I’d love a plush, deep wine longline cardi over the black base.

And a more casual “base” can be as simple as jeans and a white tee. The same “invisible” rule applies. You can put so many things on top of those two pieces to make completely different outfits – a colorful kimono, a blazer, bomber jacket, cardigan, etc.

This is just an easy way to make many outfits out of just a few items.

Forgive the ucky photo setting. I’ve lost my “after work daylight hours” with the time change and will need to resort to indoor selfies from time to time.

Do you have a “uniform” you change out with different items? I’d love to hear about it…

 

It’s Casual

I realized I’ve mostly only shared more dressed-up outfits…well, not DRESSED UP like FORMALWEAR, ha, but…work clothes…and I think I had a date dress one time (just no date to wear it on)…but I haven’t been showing more casual outfits I’d wear to coffee with friends or to a gallery…or on a doggy date with my daughter! I like outfits I can wear to work but are so comfortable that I can wear them straight through the afternoon and evening to whatever else I’m doing then.

So here’s one like that.

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It’s finally cool enough for booties and some light sweaters. But this outfit is also light enough for walking. That whole layering thing is really cute, but…I get HOT when I move and I want as little on me as possible!

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Swinging should be on more exercise regimens. After just a few minutes my stomach muscles were exhausted!

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My boy is getting old and gone are the days of needing to “wear him out.” He’s happy for a quiet stroll around the block just to get some fresh air and sniff some new scents…and then back to the sofa!

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We’re not so unalike in that regard!

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Oops.

Hope you liked seeing a more casual outfit. I like always having a couple “just throw on and go” looks that require no thought and I know I’ll be comfortable in. I’d *really* like an entire wardrobe like that! I’m still working on it….

What I’m Wearing:

Fat Ladies Shouldn’t Wear Horizontal Stripes….

….and other ridiculousness…

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I ADORE this dress. I love me a swing dress. And I Love STRIPES. The horizontal stripes don’t make me look fat. *I* make me look fat!

Stupid fat rules.

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Another convo I just had in an online forum was about not buying button-down items that don’t button-up! I disagree. I have button-down items that I like just as layering pieces – that show the item underneath, or even a lightweight jacket like this one. Buttoning is just not really in my styling vocabulary, it doesn’t work for my body as-is and I’m okay with that.

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I guess those are all the “rules” that I’m breaking in this outfit…I’m sure I’ll break tomorrow. And that’s okay!

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What rules do *you* like to break??

What I’m Wearing:

 

My Week in Review: Weeks 30-32

I’ve had such busy weekends lately that before I realize it the weekend is behind me and I haven’t done a Week in Review…and now THREE weeks are behind me, so…time to do a little catch up…I’ll just do highlights to get caught up so this isn’t HUGE. Or is it YUUUUGE? Ha. NOPE. Huge.

Had my first experience videoing a wedding – and trust me, I am no videographer…but it was sort of me or Uncle Bob with his iphone, so…I did the best I could. I took some detail shots along the way to fill in a little slide show…

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I started going through drawers and the closet to get rid of things I no longer enjoy wearing…I’m making donation piles and “sell online” piles. I’ll post a link on the blog when I have some things posted for sale online if you’re interested.

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Caleb and I picked up our girl from the airport – she had traveled to Ireland for 10 days by herself. My girl is so strong and brave!

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I swiped a pic from her Instagram…this is her at Giant’s Causeway. Which she repeatedly kept trying to climb even though told not to. That’s my girl!

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I don’t know if this is nationwide, but here on Long Island we’ve had a recent rash of “creepy clown” sightings…so this Halloween display at a house in Rockville Centre sort of took me aback! What was so funny was the squirrels loved the tree and climbing all over the clown and having a great time. Poor Creepy Clown, so disrespected.

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One weekend Caleb and I dog/house-sat for a friend. In the first five minutes I managed to lose a dog (who was then found), in the first evening I tried to burn the house down (thankfully, I failed), and overnight I managed to break the bed (shut up).

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Guess where I’m going this afternoon? More dog-sitting!

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I’ve started walking again. Starting slow…most days just about 20 minutes…but some days I have time for longer. I like to walk in interesting places.

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Last Saturday I went into the city with friends for a gallery crawl. THAT was a long walk! Thankfully I’d finally gotten myself some new sneakers, they were super comfortable *walking,* but oddly, very uncomfortable for sitting. Weird, right?? I think as they break in a bit they’ll get better.

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I enjoy the galleries, but I usually find the things I see on the street more interesting.

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The next day we took a spur-of-the-moment drive up to 7 Lakes in Harriman State Park, Sloatsburg, NY. I think we were juuuuust a tinch ahead of the height of fall color, but it was still a really nice day.

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I finally felt fallish enough to do a little outdoor decorating (it’s weird when you’re living in someone’s backyard cuz your outer area is really *their* backyard and…it’s just weird).

The boy was pooped cuz we’d just come back from a walk. Poor old boy.

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And I finally *dressed* a little fallishly even though it was actually in the 60s and sort of steamy out, ha. We cranked the ac in our office and it was good.

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And we’re all caught up…I have to get ready for my trek into dog/house-sitting and maybe a trip into Brooklyn this afternoon. I’d had plans, but my brakes are bad on my car and I feel okay driving locally, but going further away, especially on a wet day like today, and…I don’t know. We’ll see. But y’all have a good weekend, do something nice for yourself, have some fun!

A Defining Moment

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I have been procrastinating for two weeks about writing this blog post…because I am so uncomfortable with the way I look in these pictures. I am *not* saying that to get a bunch of people saying, “no, you look great, blah blah blah,” in fact, I’d appreciate if you’d refrain from saying anything like that. It’s not about how *others* feel about how I look…it’s about how *I* feel about how I look!

I’d looked so forward to this dress from Gwynnie Bee – I’d had the same style in a different print a few months back (here) and I felt very comfortable in it. It was not so tight. But when I put this on, UGH. I don’t like the way I look in it At All.

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I’ve been wanting to talk about body positivity for awhile now. There’s so much buzz about it these days, and more recently some articles about DIETING and body positivity and how the two are mutually exclusive. I disagree. I think being body positive is a matter of feeling that your body – weight, color, size, shape, height – does not define YOU. It doesn’t define ANYONE.It doesn’t…QUANTIFY them as “good, bad, healthy, unhealthy,” whatever. I can accept that I’m fat and *also* accept that I am a good, valuable, (insert other positive terms here) person. Being fat doesn’t make me LESS or WORSE than someone who is not.

I do NOT feel that it means I can not try to change. I *can* diet and exercise WHILE being body positive (I CAN!!!).

Between seeing these pictures of me in this dress…and then standing on a friend’s scale a few weeks ago (mine broke LAST summer so I’ve been clueless about any weight fluctuation, and since I lean towards looser fitting items anyway, I wasn’t aware of any “ooh, this is getting a big tight” issues), I realize I’ve gained quite a bit of weight since last (2015) summer…and it’s not about the numbers on the scale, it’s about how I FEEL. And I am feeling UNCOMFORTABLE. Physically uncomfortable. Out of breath with the slightest exertion. Challenged to walk up a flight of stairs or even stand up from a sitting position. My hips hurt immediately when I start walking…and there’s a history of bad hips in my family, I feel I’ve been lucky in not having any trouble before now. I have a painful heel issue. Also, I’m pretty much sized up out of my long-standing size and am looking for clothing now in a 4x, and that is SO much harder. Most plus-size brands go up to a 3x. Few go beyond.

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These are all things that are making me want to Lose Some Weight. Not because of the way I LOOK. But because of the way I FEEL. Because of they way it’s hindering my comfort and my life. I am basing decisions on how uncomfortable I am at this weight. There are things I am Not Doing. Activities I’m avoiding. Invitations I’m declining. Jobs I’m declining. Because it’s Too Hard to Go Out, Walk Around, Sit for Long Periods Away from Home, etc.

I am still Body Positive. But I am going to do what I need to do to make my body work better for me and my life.

I’m easing into eating better, ha. Less fast food, more home-prepared food. And I’ve started walking 3-4 times a week. I’m not in a rush…but I want to change the upward trend and I think I’m doing that. I’m not even talking about losing half my body weight (which I easily could and STILL be “plump”). This first stage is just getting me back to where I was last summer, when I was a solid 3x. Then I’ll re-assess.

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And the number? On the scale? The highest it’s EVER been. Just a few pounds away from the big three-oh. oh. OH!

So, while I didn’t LIKE myself in the dress…I can still say, “Thanks a lot, dress!” for creating a defining moment.

What I’m Wearing:

 

My Week in Review: Week 29

Annnnnd…it’s October! It’s all just flying by! This week was no different. I went upstate last weekend with a girlfriend who has a house up in Athens, NY and we did some fun things….

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My favorite place besides the beach (and bed!) is in a comfortable chair in the shade with a breeze, with a water view.

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Found it!

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This is Innisfree Garden in Millbrook, NY. What a wonderful place! Tons of acres of wooded space and paths around a beautiful lake with charming and interesting designed vignettes throughout. I look forward to going back someday and spending even more time.

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Then we just made it to the Vanderbilt Mansion before heading back up to Athens.

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As we headed home the next day we stopped in Woodstock. It was fun, quirky little shops and sidewalk vendors. I bought a pair of Tibetan silver earrings…and I’ve already lost them. Sadface.

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I think this look will be my uniform for fall. Black leggings with a black tunic…then I have like five different vests and kimonos to layer over top. An easy-peasy outfit.

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Did a quick photo shoot with my daughter. This long boho vest was very swirly and fun to wear. Hey look! Those are the earrings! Ooh! Maybe they’re still in the bag I took to the shoot!

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Finally something a little fallish…it got a teensy bit cool this week.

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The boy and I are trying to walk more. It’s the perfect weather to get the habit started again.

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And…a Gwynnie Bee dress I wore back in February (see post here) and recloseted it because I loved it so much. I just got it now…and couldn’t bear to part with it again…so bought it!

And now I’m one day into a 4-day weekend…time for some fun and relaxation. Hope you have some of that planned for yourself, too.