Sunday, November 29, 2015

Thanksgiving Break

Just a quick rundown on our Thanksgiving Break. We spent the first four days up in the local mountains at Big Bear with my parents, and my sister and brother-in-law.

About a week before our trip, a storm blew through and dropped a few inches of snow. Surprisingly, it was still on the ground on the shady side of the valley by the time we got there, and that was just delightful for Michaela. Unfortunately, the neighborhood we stayed in was on the sunny side, and so there was no snow around us. However we did have a nice view of the ski resort areas:

The most snow Michaela saw was at the Big Bear Zoo. She was far more interested in the snow than the animals!

That's a really nice little zoo. We visited last year, too. This year, maybe because it was so cold, the animals were very active.

We took a few rides down the Alpine Slide, wandered around The Village, played lots of Crazy 8s with Michaela, and enjoyed the cool temperatures. Fall comes late to this part of the country, and I can't tell you how good it felt to have to wear a jacket.

In addition to the Thanksgiving gathering at my sister's, we spent this weekend decking the halls. Now I feel like I need a vacation from my vacation!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Better Late Than Never - October Stitch Fix

Well, this has been a long time coming. I think I received this Fix the first week of October, took pictures and planned my post, and then the days just went by. As so often they do...

This was a very good Fix, but I only kept two items. I was being practical and frugal. I will say that I was somewhat disappointed that the kinds of things I'd requested were not available. I am still on the hunt for colored denim, but I'm giving up on the cargo-style vest or jacket I'd hoped for as fall is going to give way to winter soon enough. Maybe next year.

So here's what I received:

That is the Corinna Striped Dolman Top by Market & Spruce. I really liked this piece, but decided I didn't like it as much as I like a couple other items. So I returned it.

This was a keeper. It's the Alver Tie Neck Blouse by Collective Concepts. I wore it the very next day with the black Liverpool jeggings (I can't believe I own a pair of jeggings...) I had received in one of my pre-cruise Fixes, and a pair of wedge booties. After school, I had a meeting with the superintendent of my school district, and she really liked my blouse. So I told her about Stitch Fix. Wouldn't it be funny if we both wore the same blouse one day? ;)

I ended up keeping this one, too. It's the Colibri Soid Tab Sleeve Blouse by 41Hawthorn. I think the color is very flattering on me, and it just happens to be my new school's color. We often wear green on Fridays, and I was happy to add another option to my wardrobe for that purpose.

I do wish I'd kept this piece! It's the Martina Slub Knit Open Cardigan by Pixley. I thought it was a very versatile piece, and I liked the way it looked on me. Oh, well...

This last piece was a stinker in my opinion:

It's the Alcott Jacket by Skies are Blue. Just not my thing - I didn't even take any photos of me trying it on. Returned!

So there it is. If you'd like to know more about Stitch Fix, or would like to schedule your first Fix, you can use this link to access their website. If you do schedule a fix, I will receive a referral credit - and you will receive a box of goodies based on your style and preferences. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

The Happiest Day of Our Lives

Wednesday is my wedding anniversary. We would have been married eight years, but this will be the sixth year I have observed this day by myself.

When I had to purchase a new laptop about three years ago, I purchased one that does not have a CD-ROM/DVD player. I only mention this because in that time, and for that reason, I have not been able to view the majority of our wedding photos. Today I decided that I would fix that by purchasing an exterior drive, and I'm considering it my anniversary gift to myself.

There are several hundred photos from that glorious day. I'm not exaggerating - it was a glorious day. It rained cats and dogs the day and night before, but we woke up to clear blue skies and it wasn't too cold for us to have the garden ceremony we'd planned after all. We felt incredibly fortunate. Originally, we had wanted to marry on Saturday, the tenth. But that date was already booked. So we took Sunday the eleventh instead.

Anyway, there are several hundred photos. As I started to look at them, I came across a series from the moment we first got to see each other before the ceremony. I'm so thankful for the things these photos captured, because I truly can't remember all that much from that brief moment in time. But what I cherish now as I look at these pictures are the wonderful expressions on Michael's face.

See for yourself...

Being a widow sucks year-round, but especially on your wedding anniversary. Nevertheless, I look at these pictures and I am reminded how much he loved me, and how happy we were if only for a short time.

Though lovers be lost, love shall not; and death shall have no dominion. ~ Dylan Thomas

Sunday, November 1, 2015

And then it was November...

Wait. What?! Where did October go? Whoosh! It blew in and outta here like a hot, dry Santa Ana wind. (Like my attempt at descriptive writing?)

While being a middle school teacher is seriously much more manageable for me ('cause middle school is AWESOME) than being an elementary school teacher was, I still find that I am busy, busy, busy. I'm just busy with other stuff. I was elected as vice president of my teachers association last spring, and that means I have additional duties after school in that capacity - not every day. But several days a month I have meetings related to that.

My other new endeavor is a little eBay business I'm dabbling in. That's a post for another time, though. Suffice it to say, Michaela and I spend some of our "free" time thrifting after school and on the weekends. We have high hopes for our little business.

October wasn't all work. We did manage to have some fun together. A couple weeks ago we visited Riley's Farm in the local mountains for a taste of fall. It actually cools off there and feels like fall a little bit. Here are some pictures from our day trip with Grammy and Papa:

It was a beautiful day! I seriously love getting out of our urban sprawl and into the rural areas. If it weren't for my family and my job, I'd move in a heartbeat. Wide open spaces...