Thursday, August 21, 2014

Slow Summer Days

I mentioned in my last post how we have had some really slow days now that summer is winding down. Some days are so slow that I almost want to go back to work. Ha!

I shared this with my teaching partner when we met up for lunch a couple of days ago, and she is experiencing the very same thing. We both said that we'd been so busy at the beginning of the summer, but now not so much; and, uh, maybe it's time to go back to work.

For someone who would love to be a stay-at-home mom, how in the world can I feel this way?

I think it's because when you just have a few weeks at home, it's hard to establish a schedule that fills the days with purpose and the opportunity to connect with others. If I were a stay-at-home mom, we'd have some mornings where we went to a Bible study or church-based women's group, other mornings where we attended classes for Michaela, and other mornings where we went to the gym. But Bible studies and the women's group at church are things that take place during the school year, so participating in them when I have time off is not possible. So my default desire is, "Hey, it must be time to go back to work..."

And once I'm back at work, I'll be counting down the days until my next vacation.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Slipping Away

Summer 2014 is nearly a wrap. Faced with ten weeks of vacation in June, it seems like FOREVER. (And it is. I know most people have just two or three weeks of vacation time each year.) However, ten weeks goes by very quickly. Why can't ten weeks of the school year go by as quickly?

The first few weeks were really busy, but the month of August has been less busy. We've had days where we just hang out at home. I always feel a little guilty on days where I don't do much, but I think that they are a needed counterbalance to those days during the school year where I have to do so much more. The to do list I started with in June is only halfway completed. But I am pleased with the things that I was able to check off.

Here are some glimpses into our summer days:

Michaela still prefers a blanket even on hot summer days.

After I got home from getting a pedicure one day, I painted Michaela's toes for the first time. She was delighted!

We found the perfect cat for us. ;) Michaela calls her Mimi.

We spent a few days with our friends in San Francisco.

We've had some good times over at Grammy and Papa's house.

Michaela also attended her first Vacation Bible School this summer. It was a wonderful experience for her, and I enjoyed having a few hours on my own that week. I grew up going to VBS each summer, and Michaela will, too.

Looking forward, I report back to work at the end of next week, and Michaela will start attending preschool (part-time) the following week! We've been talking about it all summer long, and I think she is comfortable with the idea. Michaela is very outgoing and social, so I expect her to enjoy all the things school has to offer - especially new friends!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Stitch Fix #3

With summer vacation winding down, I can't help but thinking just a little bit about fall styles and my work wardrobe. So I was excited to see if this month's fix would be good for school.

For those who may be unfamiliar with Stitch Fix, it's a personal styling service. After you fill out a detailed profile on their website, a stylist will choose five pieces for you for a $20 styling fee. If you purchase one or more of the pieces they send you, your styling fee will go toward that purchase. If you like all five pieces and decide to keep them, you will get a 25% discount off the total purchase price. You can schedule your fixes for once a month, 2-3 times per month, or much less frequently.

Here's what I saw when I opened the box:

Included were one pair of pants, one blouse, two maxi-dresses, and a pair of earrings. I tried on the pants first, but they were too small (this has happened before!). They were marked as a 29 which would have fit me if I was shopping at Ann Taylor Loft, but this particular brand ran smaller. The fabric was a soft stretch denim:

Just Black - Nolan Ankle Skinny Jean $58

Even if they had fit like a glove, I probably wouldn't have kept them because I already have two pairs of white denim pants (that do fit!) in my closet.

The second thing I tried on was the blouse:

Collective Concepts - Clarita Floral Print Flutter Sleeve Blouse $44
I absolutely love the vibrant colors in this! I think they are beautiful for fall. The styling card showed this paired with dark denim jeans or a khaki colored pencil skirt. This one's a keeper for sure!

Next up was one of the maxi dresses:

Under Skies - Clare Woven Maxi Dress $78
First of all, though it was a medium, this dress was huge on me! In the first picture, I am actually reaching behind to hold some of the excess fabric and define the waste. I did think the print was pretty, though.

Loveappella - Carlita Jersey Maxi Dress $78
I really like this dress. I thought the color was gorgeous and the style was flattering. It would have been perfect for a date night if I was still a married lady, but I'm not. I just couldn't foresee anytime in the near future where I'd have a reason to wear this. So I reluctantly returned this. Sad face.

Lastly, my fix included a pair of earrings:

Bay to Baubles - Elaine Gem Stone Statement Studs $32
I really think these are pretty, but I chose not to keep them because I don't like the way stud earrings feel on my ears.

Because my sweet coworker had scheduled a Stitch Fix recently using my referral code, I had a $25 credit on my account. Thank you, Wendy! Therefore, when I checked out I only owed $20 and change for that lovely blouse. Yea!!!

I made sure to give detailed feedback on each piece during my checkout process so that my stylist could use that information for my next fix in September. I also increased the frequency of my Stitch Fixes to 2-3 times per month just for a short while in order to see more items in a shorter period of time. I asked that my stylist focus on blouses and knee-length skirts in the next fix so that I'll have more things for my fall work wardrobe. September and October are really hot months here in southern California, so I don't want sweaters just yet.

If you would like to try Stitch Fix, please use my referral code. When you sign up for your first fix, I'll receive another $25 credit, and you will receive referral links to share on your Facebook page or your blog with your friends and family, too. Makes shopping with Stitch Fix even more fun!