Day 220

Sure has been awhile....or otherwise titled "What I did on my summer vacation"

Sooo, I'm back-ish, yes I added an "ish" because frankly, the last time I said I was back at it, I think I posted about 4 times and then took a 3 month hiatus HAH!  And know what?  I am A-OK with that.  I've come to accept that this project will take as long as it takes, and I thank each and every one of you that has stuck with me on this journey.  I truly had not idea when I started this project  where it would lead and what the effect would be.  When I first lost my mom, the thing I missed the most was the ability to talk to her, the simple back and forth as we spoke nearly every day. As she always used to say when we would leave the house after visiting her on vacation "the silence was deafening" This blog has given me the opportunity to 'talk' to her again, and to store and archive as many memories as I can, before they start to softly fade.  I never anticipated how healing it would be to have a forum to pour out the contents of my heart.  To laugh, to cry, to remember. She is physically gone, but always she shows herself to me in little ways.  This post is truly proof of that:

Daisy's Pearls

Daisy's Pearls

At my Daughter Daisy's baby shower, one of my dearest friends had the idea to start an add-a-pearl necklace for her.  She gave each shower guest a silk pouch with two pearls and a blank card on which to write a note for the new baby to be, The idea was that each year, she would open one pouch and note, and the pearls would be added to a necklace that she would one day wear as a young woman.  I waited until her 10th birthday to give her the pearls and notes, thinking she would now have a better understanding of how cool this idea is.  Above is the FIRST note I pulled (out of over 30!) Nice work mom.




Day 219

Mother of the bride

St.John Mother of the bride

The mother of the bride outfit must surely be one that is poured over, especially by a woman like my mother.  So this ensemble, I'm sure, was given much consideration.  She settled on a cream colored St. John shell, jacket and maxi skirt, with shimmering details (but of course) Of all of the outfits of hers that I own, this is surely one that I want to hang onto.  As I have mentioned before, there is something special about having photos of both of us wearing the same thing, but this one is treasured.  I cannot believe it has been 14 years to the day that we were at my wedding together, a wedding that to be honest, was all your vision, and it was beautiful.  Just like you.  

wedding day 2001

Day 218

"All day long it's somebody's birthday...."-

Pennel Bird


Today is my mothers birthday. Was my mothers birthday.  Which is correct? I don't really know, and honestly, does it matter?  What matters is that it is another day to think of her, to reflect on the woman she was.  In all the odds and ends and bits and pieces that my mother saved throughout the years, I was so surprised to find this little treasure, this was surely her oldest memento, a sterling silver and mother of pearl rattle with her name and date of birth engraved on it.  I am so happy that this did not get lost in the shuffle amongst the many moves.  I think of her so often as a mother and wife, but can sometimes forget that she was also a little girl, and a child.  So heres to my mom as a little one, 

Of all the people I know my mother was one of the most fun to shop for, I knew what she would love, and I loved finding things for her, I miss that. Now my favorite people to shop for are my daughters, I love finding them perfect treasures, or things that I know that would make their eyes light up. I think it is all about giving.  My mother was a giver, and in turn, so am I.  My oldest daughter hopes she lives in a mansion of clouds with her mom and dad, and our old dog Virgil.  I just hope she is happy, and in peace.

I am thinking of you today, as I do every day.  Love you so.  Happy Birthday, wherever you are.

Day 217

Cancer Sucks.  Ugg.

Mom's slippers

Mom's slippers

Yes, these are what they appear to be.  Powder blue Ugg slippers.  And no, they are not glamorous or vintage, or even cool, in fact, they are my husbands least favorite slipper choice (and yes, I have multiple pairs of slippers) But these are hard to let go of.  

I was with my mom when she bought these.  It was towards the end of her illness, and her body was breaking down.  Everything hurt her, and all she wanted was comfort.  We spent an afternoon in town and went to two shops one to just look around, and one to find her some comfy slippers, the two shops were next door to one another, and I left her to go on to the shoe store. I waited awhile before getting frustrated that she was taking too long and went back to see were she was.  I found her laying on the floor in the back of the store mostly hidden underneath a rounder of clothing.  She had fallen and been too proud and embarrassed to call for help, and too weak to get up on her own.  I was furious, furious at her for pushing herself too hard, but honestly, (and I could not see it at the time), I was furious at her disease.  I was SO ANGRY at her cancer.  And what do you do with that?  What do you do with something that is filling you with such rage and sadness, and yet have no way of dealing with it, because you are too deeply in it to realize what is happening? Well, you can do any number of things; self medicate, check out, scream at your kids and your husband, lose interest in work, cut yourself.  Yes, I did all of those things.  PS they don't work.  It's so hard to find the right words to deal with cancer, especially to the person that is sick, so when I saw this new line of cards yesterday by the amazing Emily Mcdowell Studio, I was so blown away.  They are so amazing, so funny (in what is honestly a mirthless illness)  I did not have these, but if you have the kind of relationship with someone that allows you to send one of these, I think it could help maybe, in some little way.  Bust open the boundaries, acknowledge how crappy it is. I am attaching pics of some of may favorites and a link to the artists amazing site.

PS my mother never got to wear these before she passed away, and now they are mine. Sorry Randy, I think they always will be.

Day 216

The Perfect Cuff

Mom's Silver, Brass & Malachite Cuff

Mom's Silver, Brass & Malachite Cuff

I love this sweet cuff.  There is no designer that I recognize, but there is a stamp from Mexico. I have a strong feeling that this was purchased on her honeymoon to Mexico with my stepfather.  She loved this sort of thing.  Just this morning one of my dear friends asked about it.  It looks so in step with the rest of the jewelry I usually wear, and I really love it, makes me happy every time I put it on.

The stack I wore today

The stack I wore today

Day 215

Kid Gloves

Oh how I wish I had this outfit, sadly I do not.  Many, many years ago while living in Maryland, our basement had a massive flood, which destroyed some of my mothers most exquisite gowns, this one included.  Needless to say she was heartbroken, so I really love when I stumble across photos of her in one of those lost gems.  One of the things I LOVE about this outfit are the opera gloves. (notice, the buttons opened at the wrist and the fingers tucked perfectly back)

The gloves pictured on the right are obviously not the ones she was wearing, but they are one of the few pairs I have.  I am not wearing them because they are so fragile.  I adore the detail at the wrist, they are tiny pastel colored leather flowers, hand sewn on.  Relics of another time.

I remember reading a profile of the fabulous Andre Leon Talley in Vanity Fair magazine a few years ago, I never forgot what he had to say about gloves:

 “It’s about gloves, O.K., darling?” he says, without a trace of irony. “It’s about gloves. Listen.”

Gloves, gloves, gloves. He cites Michelle Obama with her seagrass-green gloves at the first inaugural, and Beyoncé with the sequined gloves zipped to the shoulder of her Givenchy dress at last year’s Met gala; Jackie O and her elbow-length opera gloves; churchgoing black women, like Talley’s grandmother, who emulated Jackie’s style and kept a drawer just for their glazed kidskin gloves; and of course his own gloves, the black crocodile ones and Prada alligators. “Just last night, I went to dinner with my friend Gloria von Thurn und Taxis, and she had her gloves on, because her husband taught her to wear them,” declared Talley. “She has drawers and drawers of gloves, some in leather, some in cloth.”


Day 214

Take it to the max!

Silk Embroidered Leaf Pattern Maxi Skirt

Silk Embroidered Leaf Pattern Maxi Skirt

Who doesn't need a green and gold embroidered leaf pattern maxi skirt with a matching scarf?! This is so fantastic I don't even know where to start. This was from my Grandmother's collection, and is from Palm beach, where I am sure it was worn to the Breakers for an event at some point.  I love the look of mixing a more casual top with a ball gown, but this could probably use something just a touch more refined on top.  Either way, this is one I will keep, and I look forward to a nice summer black tie soirée some where in my future.


Day 213...

Happy Mother's Day

Navy & White St. John Cardigan

Navy & White St. John Cardigan

I am jumping in today with no apologies.  Yes, I've taken some time off, and you know what? it's been a good thing.  Here's what I have done in the time since my last post; moved office spaces, taken a 30 day Bikram Yoga challenge, gone on Spring Break, hired a new employee, hung out with my family, and felt real healing.  

On days like birthday's anniversaries, and of course Mother's Day, it's impossible to not use those days as signposts, marking the passage of time and providing perspective on where you have been, and where you are now.

Two years ago on either Mother's day or my mother's birthday, (they are very close together), I hosted a dinner party with some of my closest friends. It had only been three months since my mom had passed, and frankly I was in no state to entertain, but in my way, (and my mother's), I felt and still do, that a good dinner party is the cure to all of life's ills. I am sure I drank a bit too much in a failed effort to self medicate, and went to take a stack of dinner plates out of an upper cabinet.  They were red 'Metlox Poppy Trails Flamingo Red" plates (see pic below)  These were from the set of dishes I had grown up with, and I clumsily dropped the entire stack on the kitchen floor.  Broke em', broke em' all.   I felt horrible, idiotic, clumsy, sad, stupid.  God bless my friends, they helped me clean up the broken pieces, (that metaphor is not lost on me BTW),  and I proceeded to slip upstairs unnoticed and shut myself in my bedroom closet.  I sat there sobbing uncontrollably, with a pain so deep ripping through me that I thought I would literally tear in two. I have no idea how long I was in there before one of my best friends found me, pulled me out and and all my ladies took me to a bar down the street for a nightcap, (that I surely did not need),  But, (I know again with the metaphors....), I needed them, them pulling me out of that dark closet where I was crying alone, even if it did end in some of us literally falling down drunk, and meeting an insane woman that offered to babysit our kids...but we also laughed, and laughed.  

That was at the beginning of what has been a long road, but a road that has lead to real recovery. Today, I can honestly say, even on this day, or maybe especially on this day, I feel truly at peace.  That is not to say that I don't miss my mother, I will always miss her, but I am basking in the love of being able to mother my own children and to feel complete in that circle of love.

Not long after my mom passed, the only friend that I knew that has also lost both of his parents said, "I know you are going to be feeling grief, but it is also ok to feel relief."  I knew exactly what he meant, although it seemed so hard to admit at the time.  A feeling of relief that the sickness, was over.  There was such an exhaustion living in anticipation of what I knew would not have a happy ending.  My own personal 'Sword of Damocles.'

And so here we are, years later, and I am finally beginning to feel real peace. I know that is all my mother ever wanted for me, she told me that herself when I was only 13, and in the throws of preteen hormonal hell, so I consider this my gift from her.

Ironically, I dreamt of my father last night, I hugged and kissed him, I felt my head on his chest.  He told me not to forget his birthday, and that he loved me, and was proud of me.  Odd on the eve of mothers day, but it was delightful. 

The outfit I chose to post today, is a classic St. John navy & white cardigan that was my mom all the way.  I thought it was perfect for a lovely spring day.  And yes, I am going to a dinner party with close friends tonight, because I still believe that's where most of the good things in life happen.

To all my mom friends, happy mothers day. To all the daughters that still have mom's, call them, tell them you love them.  And to any of you who have lost a mom, or any loved one, or are struggling with their illness. I promise, it will get better, it will take time, it will come in fits and starts, but hold on,  I promise, it will come, here's to finding peace.  

With Love-


Metlox 'poppytrails' Flamingo red plates

Metlox 'poppytrails' Flamingo red plates

Day 212

Mother of the bride

Hot pink mother of the Bride gown

Hot pink mother of the Bride gown

Oh how I love this dress.  This is a stunning hot pink, silk satin and brocade gown. Until a few days ago, I knew nothing about its history.  As I have said, I did not inherit just my mothers clothes, but also her mothers clothes, (and her mothers clothes, and so on and so on).  So this weekend, when I was sifting through old family photos with my second grade daughter for her family tree project, I came across a stack of photos from my mother's first wedding.  I recognized the dress my grandmother was wearing almost immediately .  I was so happy to know that this was the dress I came across this summer, and loved, and the fact that now I know that it was hot pink, makes me look at those old black and white photos in such a different way.   Way to go Gram, I love your style...Oh and while I was typing this, my nine year old asked if I  would save this dress for her, yes my love, of course I will.

Day 211

Mad for Plaid

Red & black silk plaid evening blouse, with black lace pants.

Red & black silk plaid evening blouse, with black lace pants.

Ok, it's about time we got back to some clothing, and what better to come back than with a classic Mom holiday ensemble.  This was her style all the way; silk taffeta, plaid evening blouse with black lace trousers, and a big ol' pearl chocker with a rhinestone and "onyx" clasp.  I actually think this top would look great with jeans and a kitten heel right?!

 While writing this, I fell into my usual research wormhole, and felt the burning need to find out just what the difference between 'Plaid' and 'Tartan' is.  So for those of you who may have ever wondered, here you go:

 In "House Beautiful," designer Scot Meacham Wood describes it simply: "All tartans are plaid, but, not all plaids are tartan." Plaids are patterns of stripes that meet at right angles. With tartans, the horizontal and vertical patterns match, creating a perfect grid. This blending of design and overlap of color can create thousands of potential patterns.”

 So there you have it.  And if you really want to know more, dive into this website.  This will tell you more than you ever imagined.  Isn’t procrastination fun?!

Day 210

Oh Tannenbaum

Starter Tree

Starter Tree

So what’s the big deal?  It was Christmas time, and there was a tree.  Big Whoop.  Well for me this tree was indeed a ‘Big Whoop’.  This tree was the first “tree” Randy and I put up in our home together.  In past years, we would have small, “ornament” trees.  Basically 24” fake numbers, that we used to hang the growing collection of our kids homemade ornaments, and the one’s gifted to us from my mom.

Sure we had a tree whenever we visited my folks, but that was really considered the territory of my mom. 

I grew up with a Christmas tree, my mother was IN LOVE with Christmas, she was not over- religious about it, she just loved all the accouterments, the food, the smells, the lights, the decorations, the presents!!!  My mother was so incredibly generous,  there would sometimes be so many  presents that you could barely enter the room, was it excessive? Decadent? Too much?  Probably, was it great?  Definitely.

This year was the second Christmas without my mom, and the first year that we have spent it in our home.  So the tree issue was going to come up.  What to do?  My sweet husband grew up on the complete other end of the spectrum.  He had a conservative Jewish upbringing*, which was a deeply wonderful experience for him.  (*Tree not included)  He has been so wonderful over the years, indulging my ever growing collection of holiday paraphernalia; a mantle garland with twinkle lights, pine scented candles, twinkling lawn reindeer (I did put yarlmukes on their heads and call them “Santa’s Schlepper’s”...) , door wreath…etc. "what?  It’s a celebration of winter?!"  But a real tree?  Negativo.

I wanted a tree this year, and bad.  Not a shorty, not a Charlie Brown tree, but a taller than me, string of lights number.  One that could have presents placed under it, not on the side of it.  This was a delicate discussion, as much as the memory of a tree was tied to my mother, the memory of no tree was tied to the memory of my husbands dear father who had  also passed away some years before.  My husband moodily agreed, under the stipulation that it not be too tall.  So I found the shortest tree I could find (that was taller than me, that was one of my conditions)  And settled on a  modest aprox 6' footer)  I was in heaven, the kids were overjoyed, my husband, mildly annoyed.

And then came the emotion.  I felt guilty about it.  So guilty in fact that when my oldest daughter joyfully wanted to show her Nanna the tree on FaceTime, a yelled at her not to.  She burst into tears and ran off to her room.  Leaving me with a stunned, silent, digital  Nanna, to which I needed to explain the whole thing.

I said I was so sorry, "I know they did not have a tree growing up...etc."  to which she graciously responded; "Why would I be upset that you have a tree?  You grew up with one, Mike is coming, he's always had one, your mom had one"  The relief I felt was so powerful, my husbands Jewish mother told me it was ok!!!   Honey, I love you, I respect you, you are my husband, what you say means the world to me.  But in this moment, I believe your mom was the one I needed to listen to.  I think her words helped him feel better about it too, in fact I am sure they did.  Thanks Nanna.

(PS The damn tree is too small....)



Day 209

A Man For All Seasons

The Great 'Grampido'

The Great 'Grampido'

After the long hiatus, I am back and ready to reflect on all the events of this past holiday season.  Perhaps that feels as fresh, as a creepy, stale fruitcake you may still have sitting on the counter, or maybe in our culture of insta-nostalogia, it will feel just right?

What I found most about this time, is that the things I inherited from my mom, were not all clothes, in fact they varied widely, from food to traditions, to people.

People?  Yes.  I can honestly say that one of the greatest things I inherited from my mother is my Stepfather.  They were married for 29 years when my mom passed away.  He has always been like a father to me, and my children have known him  their entire lives as  “Grampy”  (as do many of my close friends). 

After my mom died, it would have been easy for him to recede, he lives across the country, and while he is very spry, he is approaching his mid 80’s.  But lo and behold, this summer, he called me to announce that he had found a very good fare to California for the Holiday’s.  I said: “book it!”  Without ever really discussing an arrangement, we have somehow settled on one; he switches off years and holidays between my family and the children from his first marriage.  Thanksgiving with us one year, with them the next, you get the picture.   In between the major Holidays, we try and visit him on the east coast at least once or twice a year.  We talk every week, sometimes more.  We love him, and he loves us.  I cant tell you how much the relationship means to me.  It feels like a part of my mom is still there when he is around. 

This past visit I told him how much I missed talking to my mom.  How much I missed that unconditional sounding board, the person that never judged, was always on my side, but would tell me when I was acting crazy.  You know what he said to me?  “You know you can always call me, you can talk to me about all that stuff, I promised your mom I’d be there and take care of you”  He really meant it.  It was the sweetest, kindest thing.  I still get a lump in my throat thinking about it. 

It was and is a comfort.

Day 208

One Day at a Time

Vintage St.John sweater, Gay Boyer Belt, Frye Boots, Hermes Saddle Bag

Vintage St.John sweater, Gay Boyer Belt, Frye Boots, Hermes Saddle Bag

All of the above items may have appeared in previous posts, but I felt it was ok to take liberties with this one.  Often times, I will only wear one item of my mom's combined with something contemporary that I own.  But on this (rarely) grey, chilly day in Los Angeles, all I wanted to wear was a nice sweater and boot combo.  As the outfit came together, I found that every item I reached for was vintage.  Some of the pieces are mine that I have collected, and some are my mom's, but there is nothing in this outfit made after 1983.  I have to say, I love the look.  It harkens back to all the shows I loved as a kid  (It's kind of Bonnie Franklin from one day at a time right?) And while I rarely do it, it felt kind of great to be in head to toe vintage. 

Everything old is new again.  I was thinking about that phrase, and so I googled it, and got the lyrics to a Peter Allen/Carole Bayer Sanger song....

Don’t throw the past away
you might need it some rainy day
Dreams can come true again
When everything old is new again
— Peter Allen/ Carole Bayer Sanger

I couldn't have said it any better myself.

Day 207...

Just Dotty

J. Crew Polka dot long sleeved t-shirt

J. Crew Polka dot long sleeved t-shirt

Let me start this post with an apology for the hiatus I have taken for the past week. Apology, registered. I will now move on.  This is a busy time of year for us all.  It is an especially busy time for type "A" control freaks.  Let me explain the above vignette.  In no uncertain terms, I hijacked my nine year old daughters holiday boutique/fundraiser item (raising money for the 4th grade class trip).  It started innocently enough.  She came home one day and began to explain an elaborate plan her class workgroup had to sell items, via a spinning wheel of chance.  I then began to explain that perhaps that was not going to be an efficient business model (how to control inventory?! etc.)  So I suggested making ornaments, commemorative ornaments to celebrate her schools 125th anniversary?  Who doesn't love a commemorative item?!  Well let's just say, the project coup d'etat snowballed from there.  I ordered the ornaments, designed and ordered the stickers to put on them,  and then in a moment of sheer insanity, decided that I needed to spray paint them, on both sides, all 100 of them!  Why?  Because I am a big ol' dummy dumb.  (Just a side note about spray paint and unfinished wood, unless you have the right kind of spray paint, it will immediately be absorbed into said wood, necessitating several coats, oh and a side trip to the hardware store for cans of the appropriate paint.)  Did I mention that SoCal was having a major squall on that day, and what that does for paint drying time...?  You get the idea.

For the spray paint adventure, I threw on some of my go to, comfy, not afraid to get paint on, clothes.  That includes the top that you see on the floor.  I am not wearing it in the pic, because my husband was not there photograph, and the image of the polka dots and the round ornaments was just too good to pass up.

My mom bought me this shirt at a J. Crew outlet in South West Florida.  It was given to me on our last Christmas together.  It's not fancy, nor was it hers, but what makes it special to me, is that I know that Christmas, she had to do her shopping in a wheelchair, pushed my by stepfather.  That must have been so hard for her, in fact I know it was.  She loved her independence, and the freedom to go wherever she pleased.  Like me, she loved to shop alone (or with me!) She found it fun, and relaxing.  

But come hell or high-water, she was going to go shopping, and not just be content to do it online.  Until the end, she went to get her hair done, she wanted to drive into town, which we were terrified of, but she did it.  The car had the dents to prove it.  

When I was in High School, my mom and I spray painted 30 butter cookie tins and decorated them to give as holiday gifts.  This project made me think of her so  much.  And I promise it was not just the paint fumes.

(PS In my opinion, the ornaments turned out great!)

Just enough knowledge of photoshop & Illustrator to get myself into trouble....

Just enough knowledge of photoshop & Illustrator to get myself into trouble....

Day 206

Green Sleeves...

Vintage emerald green shantung silk coat dress

Vintage emerald green shantung silk coat dress

Ok, I must admit, I am hopped up on the holidays, and I can't seem to shake this desire to post these kind of fancy clothes that would work for any seasonal party, and wax on about how delightful the season is, but, as I was in the middle of writing this, I lost my brain. This meltdown was not directly inspired by some memory of holidays past, or some tender moment with my mom.  I was pushed to the edge of my sanity after two hours of math homework with my youngest daughter, whilst I was preparing dinner, after a day going through my year end business paperwork.  Now who wants to party?!  The simplest reasoning for this trigger after some door slamming, high pitched screaming, and tearful apologies, is that I am not sure I have fully figured out how to process that when I was my kids age, no one helped me with my homework, and certainly not while they were making dinner.  The dinners came later, bountifully, and with so much love you could truly taste it.  But that help with the academics, never. Ever.  I am the sister of one of the  most respected sub-atomic particle physicists in world.  His name is Jordan Nash, (if you want to google him go for it, but I'll list his larger credits here: discovering the 'Z' particle while in grad school at Stanford, project manager at CERN, head of the High Energy Physics the Imperial College in London...)  This was obviously, a child that needed no help whatsoever with his studies.  In fact he dusted us all in the cranial dept. So I think when I came along, there was no model.  I was, as all my juvenile reports cards state (I found them all after my father died) "a delightful, affable young girl who has so much potential, if only she could focus herself."  Yep, that was pretty spot on.  I was the embodiment of Ferdinand the bull, standing in left field content to just sit and smell the flowers.  I was a dreamer.  Truth be told, I wished for a fantasy life, I would construct elaborate stories for why my mom missed a school play ("she was out horseback riding") or invent maladies for myself to garner attention.  I could not wait to disappear into the chronicles of Narnia, or any other fantasy world a book could take me.  Despite all odds, I went on to hight school, college, graduate school, and to ultimately run a business that I am very proud of.

Cut to tonight, two HOURS into homework with my little one, who is clearly the 'Ferdinand' in our family.  And I lost it.  Lost it as she flopped around in her chair, and guessed at answers, like throwing darts at a board.  I snapped, and shrieked, and generally acted like a crazy woman.  I went upstairs to my room, locked the door, and sat on my bed.  What was I really mad at?  And then it hit me, I was mad that I was there, and that wasn't enough.  There was this angry little girl in me that was yelling "you don't know how good you've got it!  No one helped me with my homework!!"  But as soon as I realized that, it hit me, that is not their fault.  Sure, I can get frustrated about 2 hours of lackluster academics, but I need to check the fever pitch that it triggered.  

I have a perfect quote framed in my house.  It simply states:  "Lets make better mistakes tomorrow"  Here, here.  Let's try that shall we?  I will try not to ask my children to be the proverbial 'bellmen' for my emotional baggage.  This may take some time, but tomorrow is another day.

Day 205

All That Glitters....

Vintage Iridescent beaded clutch

Vintage Iridescent beaded clutch

Oh the Holiday's, not only is it filled with a stream of friends food and libations, but it also offers increased chances for the occasion to actually wear some of the fancier items I have in my mother's pantheon.  This iridescent beaded bag, is so sweet & lovely, and looks so nice with this pale pink silk column skirt and brocade top.  I am a sucker for pale colored evening clothes, I know black is safer, but there is a delightfully ethereal quality to a pale pink ensemble.  I suppose it still makes me feel like a little girl, and the iridescence of the beads....was I the only girl in the 80's that was obsessed with L'oreal iridescent nail polish?  It was all I wanted to wear.  So here's a round of applause for the most shimmering bag, in the most shimmering season!

Day 204

I'm Sorry

Vintage Chinchilla jacket

Vintage Chinchilla jacket

I couldn't really think of any other better title for this post than "I'm sorry" (I am wearing a vintage Chinchilla jacket for god sakes!  Have you ever seen a baby chinchilla? OMG I am SO sorry!!) But to be honest, it ended up being a perfect dovetail into an overarching feeling I was having tonight.  The day before yesterday, I wrote about the great thankfulness I feel in my life, but tonight I was abruptly presented with the fact that while I have been the recipient of much wonderful and healing friendship over the past few years, I perhaps have not always been the best friend. And for that I am deeply sorry.  I need to be honest, the past few years have been hard, some of the hardest of my life. Somedays just getting out of bed, and getting my kids dressed and off to school has taken the lion's share of my bandwidth.  Running a business and deciding to take on an archive of this nature has been both simultaneously rewarding and at times, exhausting.  I am not always a sparkling conversationalist, sometimes I am terrible on the phone (a trait both my mother and I shared) And there are certain times that I am desperately happy that I just made it through another day.  So to the friends that I have disappointed, I am sorry. Please forgive me If I made you feel I was unavailable, or disassociated, it was never my intention.  Please know that I am truly thankful for each and every friend, each and every kind comment, smile or piece of feedback.  But I'm still really, really sorry about the jacket.

Day 203

"Snakes...Why'd it have to be snakes?" - Indiana Jones
Vintage Diane Von Furstenberg snake print jumpsuit.

Vintage Diane Von Furstenberg snake print jumpsuit.

Oh mom, how I love that you owned a silk jersey snake print Diane Von Furstenburg wrap jumpsuit.  I mean, seriously, how great is that?!  The past few posts have been pretty emotionally reflective, so it actually feels quite good to post a piece that in no uncertain terms just says; "where's the party at?"  So many of my mother's clothes were just plain fun, and some, downright silly.  This rides the line between chic and cheeky.  Good for you mom.  So as we enter the holiday party season, let's all have some fun shall we?

Day 202

A Thousand Thanks

Vintage Cashmere Chinese toggle closure cardigan

Vintage Cashmere Chinese toggle closure cardigan

Well,  the "season" is officially here. And by season, I am,  of course,  referring to the grand trifecta of holidays; Thanksgiving, Christmas/Chanukah, and New Year's Eve.  These are holidays that have always been deeply connected to family for me.  During some portion of the next 5 weeks, I would never fail to see my mother. We never spent a Christmas apart, ever.  These holidays are charged with emotion on so many levels, times where the void is beyond intense. My mother always used to say after we left her house  "The silence is deafening".  That is the heart of it,  the silence, not being able to talk to her about holiday menus, or what gifts the kids would like, or what to wear to a party.  

The sweater I am wearing in this post is a vintage cashmere cardigan with Chinese frog closures, that my mother inherited from my grandmother,  most likely it was made for her on one of her shopping trips to Hong Kong.  I wore this to a lovely post Thanksgiving potluck filled with the most wonderful assortment of friends.

Holiday's also serve as a sort of emotional time machine.  It is impossible not to look back and think  "Where was I last year at this time?"  not just physically, but also mentally.  I'm not going to sugarcoat, last Thanksgiving was awful.  I won't go too deeply into it, but let me just say that the evening ended with me walking through my neighborhood for close to two hours sobbing hysterically.  Pretty messy business.  I eventually ended up at my dear friend Sandy's house, where I downloaded, recuperated, and finally walked back home.  

That brings me to this year, This year was different.  Yes, there is still (and always be) a void, but this year, I was able to reflect on all of the people in my life that have helped to fill that void.  Friends and family that have been there every step of the way.  You know who you are:  you slept in the hospital with me, you flew to Florida to help me clean out my mother's closets, you let my family stay at your house when ours was destroyed by hurricane Sandy, you took me to lunch on my first birthday after my mom died, you literally pulled me out of the closet I was hiding and crying in and after I accidentally broke a set of my mom's dishes, you never stopped checking in with me and asking how I was, you love me unconditionally, you became my turkey hotline, you love cooking with me,  you love fashion as much as I do.  To my dearest friends, my loving husband and my magical daughters, I thank you from the bottom of my heart, for helping me heal, for being there for me every step of the way, for giving me so many reasons for being thankful.  

Sweater Detail

Sweater Detail