Tag Archives: Clothes

Shirt Tales

Nothing for days and then I sneak in on the eleventh hour with this. Where have I been?  Right here.  No, really.  I took a life vacation on Friday.  I did absolutely nothing until two in the afternoon.  My husband took care of the boys and I lazed around on my bed still in my jim-jams watching TV and slacking right off.  It felt great, but if I’m completely honest, I didn’t.

It’s not depression, it’s really not.  I think it’s definitely my hormones though, and let me just say this:  I am dying to know if it is hypothyroidism so I can finally put an end to it and give it a name.  I’m tired of still losing hair after almost two years, feeling on edge for no reason with a pit in my stomach ready to snap at any moment.  And Aunt Flo?  She hasn’t been on time any month this year.  I was Day 29 On. The. Dot. Without fail.  They’d set bus schedules by my cycles I was that consistent.  And now?  Now I am anywhere between 5-16 days late every time, and usually closer to the latter.  In fact, I completely skipped August I was so late.  I have it all charted thanks to a sweet website and all I have to do is print it out.  I sleep the requisite eight hours and awake feeling groggy, disheveled and completely unrested.  It’s not every day, and that’s the clincher.  I don’t wake up every day feeling like I’ve been beat up with a baseball bat ready to bite anyone’s head off, feeling frustrated by my own inability to fix it and wishing I could go back to feeling like the person I really am.  I feel like I’ve lost myself and I want that peace in my life again.  The good news is, I have an appointment for the 28th to see what’s going on.  I’m excited and terrified at the same time.  What if nothing’s wrong?  What then?

For the past three days I’ve sat at the laptop with words swirling in my head, posts I haven’t written but things that have been in the forefront of my mind — all on various topics.  I couldn’t do it.  I just sat and stared feeling defeated, indifferent and … empty if I’m being honest.  I didn’t feel like being chatty.

Today wasn’t one of those days, we drove to the local mall (remember?  forty-five minutes away) picked up Bryan’s new glasses — no thanks to Cameron who got a hold of his old ones and redesigned them, finally picked up my new contacts (yep, he just barely OK’d the fitting after almost three months) and bought another black shirt.  Go here if you don’t know about the Great Black Blouse Debacle.  After searching through many different stores just to make sure I had found the blouse I loved, I was ready to buy this one at Macy’s — a lot more than I’ve spent on a blouse in the past, but it was for a worthy cause: my self esteem.

Last week in my search, I had walked in many stores I’d never set foot in before and others very rarely.  American Eagle Outfitters had nothing dressy at all, Eddie Bauer’s blouses were too plain for the price.  I breezed through JC Penney just to amuse myself and came out empty handed but not disappointed.  When I slinked into Abercrombie & Fitch for the first time trying to go unnoticed by the scoffing angst-ridden post-teenager types, I suddenly felt a cloak of creepiness sweep over me.  There was barely anyone else in the store, but as I walked past the dimly lit racks and shelving, I couldn’t help but feel like I had just been groped on the sly.  I walked out with my upper lip curled and in need of a shower.  And — they had nothing to boot either.

And, although I do give them props for their empathetic, humourous nature, CHICO’S had one drapey top that was more of a shiny thin t-shirt, beyond plain and on sale for $50.  I by-passed Coldwater Creek, Rave and Vanity and then pretty much gave up on finding a different blouse and trailed myself off to Target for some life essentials.

Now, if you’ve never done this, I highly recommend it.  Throwing small children into the mix adds a new level of stress and competitiveness to any excursion.  Shopping with a four-year-old and a twenty-one-month-old requires precision swooping, an in-get-what-you-need-and-get-out mentality and a lot of creativity.  Today as I stood in LensCrafters on the sidelines as Bryan had his new specs fitted, clutching Cameron to my hip for dear life and trying on glasses to amuse him and myself for that matter — I really should get a photo of me in specs, I was channelling the sexy librarian look in a pair of Anne Klein lovelies — he wriggled out of my grasp using the dead fish technique and darted out the store and ran next door.  Next door to Maurice’s.  I had never been in Maurice’s.  Never ever.  As I stood up from my running-crouch position in the middle of the shop, I suddenly felt like a happy meercat in merchandise heaven.  As soon as I had blurted out the words ” funky black shirt” I was whisked to the dressing room with a black version of a white one I had been eyeballing.

“Hello new best friend!” I said peering down at the shirt and smiling to the assistant.  It was a great fit!  I could have been best friends with this girl.  She encouraged my sense of humour and so I kept the one-liners coming as she laughed and chortled in my general direction.  I walked out with shirt number two and a new sense of accomplishment.

Shirt number one: Target, and a steal at $14.99.  Shirt number two: Maurice’s, and $26 even.

Ignore the white legs — now that I’ve pointed them out.

It’s not just plain in the front.  I heard the words “puppies”, “blanket” and “boob shirt.”  For all that is sweet and holy!  Is she wearing a bra?  Yes.  The girls may be the requisite half-way between elbow and shoulder, but, my dear friends, it looks like it’s time for a new bra.

Don’t adjust your monitors, folks.

That’s our neighbour’s yard in the background, so no talking smack about our lack of horticultural skills.
Note, if you will, the new snazzy hair cut.

It’s a close up of the details, the DETAILS.

How it looks together.

I think I’ve picked my favourite but I wanted to run it by my friends first.  So after I did that, I posted it here.  Just kidding!  I’m leaning towards the Maurice’s shirt with the ruffles.  What do you think?  I’m still not set on the shoes though.

I’m sad!  Unfortunately, no-one suggested Maurice’s.  But!  I did scan through each and every store everybody mentioned and took every suggestion seriously, so, a HUGE thanks for that.  Joyce-Anne did mention Macy’s, but since I had forgotten it wasn’t located in the mall like my memory thought and was miles away, I tried to expand my options with what was closest until I went online and bought it.  So … I guess I’ll have to hoard that $25 gift card to myself.  Until next time … nudge nudge.  In the meantime, I’ll be shopping at Maurice’s from now on.  Goodbye Old Navy, you big arse biscuit.


Conspiracy Theory

PhotoStory Friday

Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Like I’ve said before, every aspect of your life as an ex-pat is revolutionised.  Things you’ve grown up with and taken for granted are suddenly gone and you’re left standing staring at shelves in the supermarket wondering what Miracle Whip and Cool Whip is, and trying not to confuse the two in random conversations.

You troll stores searching for products and names you recognise and even look at labels looking for the company name where you realise Schick and Wilkinson’s Sword are actually one and the same; or noticing that Lenor and Downy are the same company, even though Snuggle has the Orange Rush scent that smells just like Lenor’s Sunshine scent that your Mum uses.

I had retail stores in Glasgow and my hometown that I loved to browse and shop in.  I found my niche and stuck with it.  When I got here, there were only a few clothing places that  I recognised, one being T.J. Maxx — except is called T.K. Maxx over there.  I have no idea why.  And I really wish we had an H&M in Montana, I love that place.  So, it has been hard starting from scratch, shopping in places you have no historical loyalty to and learning where to go and where avoid.

I need help.

If you just said, “we already knew that, that’s nothing new…” shut your dirty mouth!

Before I start, let me just say I love weddings.  I get dazzled by the flowers, decorations, lights, music and the amazing ambiance.  I’m one of those people that totally gets swept up in the moment and enjoys the atmosphere.  And, it’s great to see two people who really love each other making a lifelong commitment of love, companionship and devotion to each other.  Although I have to say, there seems to be an unwritten rule somewhere for brides that says 40% of them have to wrangle bridesmaids or attendants into making them wear something they normally wouldn’t take a second glance at.

And before you start just so you know, I never had any bridesmaids

As happy as I am that my little BIL is getting married in November and that he’s found the love of his life, I can’t get over the skirt I’ll be prancing around in.  Well, me and at the very least, another four of us.  There are more, I just have no idea how many.  Now, I can live with the pattern.  After staring at it for two hours, I can live with it.  What I would have really liked is a wrap-over skirt — they’re easy to make and very flattering.  What we have is a slightly A-line skirt with a heavily elasticated waist with six small pin tucks to make it slightly flouncy.  Couple that with a calf-length hem that is just over an inch too short to be calf length and you have my living nightmare.

I know it’s not my wedding and I don’t get to decide, but still, how many body types do you know that an elasticated waist will flatter?  My friends Stacey and Clinton tell me “none” and “the computer says ‘no’.”

I’m really excited that we all get to pick a black blouse.  It doesn’t matter what it looks like, it just has to be black.  And wouldn’t you know it, I don’t own a black blouse.  The only constraint I have is I want to keep the price tag $50 or under.  So far, I have been unsuccessful in locating an amazing blouse.  Given my duration  here, I will say that I used to have places here that were my ‘go to’ for clothes, and without naming any names, their quality has went down, and their prices up.

So this is where I am hoping you lot will help me out.  Have you seen an amazing blouse that you love?  Do you own said blouse, and per chance, where can I buy it?  Do you hit nearby clothing stores (that I don’t have frequent access to) and have seen a blouse or could look out for one?

Now, this isn’t just a hollow, unrequited request.  Find me a great one that I purchase and I’ll send you a $25 gift card to the store of your choosing…