Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Week In Review

Sometimes life is really crazy.
Crazy busy, that is.

Balancing my home life with my work life can be exhausting.
For example, I was up at the crack of dawn Wednesday to hull and halve 4 quarts of strawberries for my daughter's school Thanksgiving breakfast.

my little "turkey" with her turkey

I was showered, dressed and at her school by 10am to help the little buggers make "turkey bagels".
When the party ended around 11, I rushed back home to bake my apple and pumpkin pies.
While the pies baked, I cleaned the house and finished laundry then it was off to work.

The day before Thanksgiving is not only busy, but we cannot leave until we are 100% ready to open the doors for Black Friday.
Which means I didn't get home until 3am Thanksgiving Day.
I have been coughing up a lung for over a week now, and felt horrible by the time I got home, so I popped some NyQuil and it was off to bed.
Too bad my daughter wanted me up only 5 hours later, not nearly enough time to sleep off the grogginess of the medicine.
I moved to the couch where I could resume sleeping and she could begin cartoon watching.

Three crazy weeks of corporate visits and really, really long hours had really taken it's toll on me physically.
I spent all day Thanksgiving on the couch in pj's, only getting up now and again to tend to my half hearted meal.

I was scheduled to work at 3am Black Friday and for the first time ever we were opening our store at midnight.
The mall wasn't officially opening until 4am, but we (along with a few other retailers) had agreed to open at 12.
I woke up at 11:30pm and texted my manager who was opening.
"Are people even there yet?" I asked.
"There are hundreds of people lined up outside our store!" she responded "They are screaming to me asking which gate I am going to open first!"
"I'm on my way!" was my reply.
Within 40 minutes I had showered, dressed and was on the road.
I arrived shortly after 1am and the line was already looped multiple times around the building.
It was madness!

(my mall! pic from

For the next 14 hours I provided line control on what ended up being a record breaking day.
My store finished in the top ten in our nation for sales volume! I was #9!
The results made all our hard work and my aching chest worth it...we were truly super stars!
Of course, at this point my voice was completely gone, and when I arrived home, changed right into pj's and reclaimed my spot on the couch.
Sleep, wake up, fall back asleep....story of my life lately!
Saturday it was back to work, same old same old!

Today I was off, my voice is not quite back and we had a christening to attend.
I begged the hubby to take a walk with me this morning.
He didn't think I should be out in such cold weather as sick as I have been.
But man, oh man, did the fresh, cold air feel good!

a peek through the brambles at the christmas tree farm down the road from my house!

After the walk it was home to get ready.
The christening and after party were held in the town neighboring our old one.
It was lovely sitting in the warm yacht club looking out over the chilly river.

the town we currently live in is right across the water

the bridge that takes you over to jersey shore land

Now that the craziest week of the year is over, I am looking forward to getting back to a more normal routine, good health (knock on wood!) and some outfit pictures!
Oh, and maybe a Christmas tree and some decorations too!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Can You Keep Up?

I am technologically impaired.
Oh sure, I write a blog.
Music shaped who I am this very day and yet I don't own an iPod.
(But I have tons of vinyl in the attic!)
I am really behind the times as far as the newest, most advanced tools of the trade go.
In fact, every two years when our cell phone plan is up for renewal I tend to roll my eyes when the husband suggests an upgrade.
To be completely honest with you, I sometimes wish I didn't have a cell phone...
Wasn't life more simple without anyone and everyone being able to get a hold of you at any moment in time?

When I started my new job in April, I realized how archaic and behind the times I am.
 I sat in meetings while my peers Blackberried to their little hearts content and each day see my desk littered with my managers internet accessible phones.
When questions arise, the answers are swiftly googled.
If I tell someone I write a blog, they look it up right then and there.
All while I hold my little flip phone "Chocolate" in shame.

During the summer I told my husband that I would need an upgrade this time around.
My boss communicates through email daily.
And I have no clue what is going on until I get home from work.
Still, I have been in no hurry to run out and actually upgrade.
At our Halloween party, my raucous brother teased me about my impairment.
"They don't even make your dumb phone anymore!" he taunted.
My girlfriend says in constant astonishment,
"You have almost 100 employees! How can you not at least have a Blackberry!?"
I have no answers.

This weekend the husband suggested we look at some other cell phone providers.
Perhaps it was time to switch.
Well friends, we went to At&t and I looked at the iPhone 4.
It was love at first touch.

I have already spent about $30 at iTunes.
I plan to pillage and plunder my son and husbands iPods for more music.
In fact, I sit here now typing away, ear phones on listening to my new toy.
Unlimited texting?
More internet access than the salesgirl says I can possibly use?

And she's off....

traversa cardi: jcrew
polka dot blouse: express
tweed shorts: gap
tights: ny&co
thigh highs: target
boots: coach
ring: express
earrings: ny&co

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Kill Price

The most grueling week of work (possibly ever):
~ Working 12 hours each Sunday and Monday
~ Going in to work Tuesday morning at 6am and not leaving to go home til 1am on Wednesday
~ Arriving home at 2am, close eyes for 1hr (doesn't really count as sleeping!), back up and showered and back in car at 5am
~ Arrive back to work at 6am Wednesday
~ Crawl around edging sales floor (in sweats) with vacuum and mopping entire 9000 sq foot sales floor
~ Quickly changing clothes to this ensemble
~ Waiting anxiously for CEO of company and executive team to arrive to see my store
~ Nervously touring them throughout
~ Waving good bye at the door and finally breathing a sigh of relief
~ Rushing home to pick up daughter and all the kids on the block from 1/2 day at school
~ Babysitting until the other moms get out of work and tidying up the house that looks like a bomb went off in it (dustbunnies in hallways were actually biting at my ankles)
~ After kids get picked up, taking sick 16 year old to doctor as promised
~ Finding out he has double ear infections (oh, so that's why he couldn't hear out of his right ear!)
~ Off to Target to get prescriptions filled
~ Mill about Target while waiting for medicines
~ Throw unnecessary crap into cart because I am out of it and at this point don't know any better
~ Home and collapsed on couch by 8pm
~ Comatose until 8:30 am Thursday

I spent Thursday fuffing about the house.
At this point of exhaustion, I struggle to focus and just mill about not really accomplishing anything.
Wasted day.
I would have liked to lay on the couch watching Coco Before Chanel which I picked up recently, but my poor son was laying there in my spot instead.

But, don't cry for me Argentina...such is the life of a retail manager/mommy!
This is what I have knowingly signed up for!

Back to work on Friday, after such a tough week I feel like crap mentally and physically.
And still struggling to focus on anything and everything.
Almost a solid week of food court dining will do that to you.
So imagine my joy when I wandered (aimlessly) into JCrew on my break and one of the sales associates points to a rolling rack and says,
"Hey Eleanor, check out the Kill Price rack!"
"Kill price?"
"Yeah, onesies and twosies we marked down really low."
Come again???
Nothing could make a hard week fade into a distant memory faster than finding treasures like this:
Shore heathered plaid men's button up
With extra 30% off only $20!

Secret wash button down in banker's stripe
Purchased in a purple-ish shade for hubs on Kill Price rack

Traversa cardi in black for moi
Kill Price: $9.99!

Also purchased, but not pictured:

Coralie cami in creamy/blushy color
Cotton twisted neck l/s tee in rose

Yes, really!
It will never cease to amaze me how a delightful bargain can always soothe the weary soul!

Now, excuse me friends, as I am off to the salon for about 4 hours of color, highlights, cut and blow drying.
And hopefully some good scalp massaging during all the washings.

Happy Weekending Everyone! 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lead Me Not Into Temptation...

Working in a mall is not for the faint hearted.
I'm not talking about those who crumble under a customers angry glare or harsh words.
Nor am I referring to dealing with gaggles of pre-pubescent wonders on Friday night playing hide and go seek from store to store.

I'm talking of the more evil things...
The sweet, sweet offerings of all your favorite retailers...lurking just doors down from you.
All day.
Every day.

The signs that tempt and taunt with messages of deep discounts.
The friends and family flyers readily distributed from store to store with discounts you cannot possibly resist.
The flatbeds of truck drivers loaded with boxes passing by all day...
Restocking them with what sort of wonders?

The most sinister part of it all....

Quiet time to wander through the mall....weaving in and out of store after store....the anticipation of  a treasure just waiting to be addicting.
Like the sweet siren's call these stores beckon.
Food will no longer satisfy the hunger that lies within.

You're a shopper and you are on the prowl.
Eating no longer matters.
You check your watch and plan your time and execute flawlessly.
As you walk into your favorite store you find this tank in the sale section:

And you know that this gorgeous cardigan with gold threading throughout would look amazing on top of that tank you saw.

You know you shouldn't pull the trigger.


To be worn together...
With my brown suede Coach boots...

Must be strong...
Must not succumb to temptation...
Must stop thinking about them EVERY DAY.

tank: jcrew
sweater: express

Friday, November 12, 2010

Shopping Your Closet: From Ad To Had!

I fell in love with this look from Anthropologie as soon as I saw it.
I blogged about it here and my friend Pamela said that she could totally see me wearing this.
Truth be told, I am scared silly of maxi dresses since I am so short that I am oft mistaken for a long lost Roloff sibling.
(Which, by the way is one of my favorite shows and I would love to live with the Roloff's...except that Matt would probably drive me crazy!)
I know not every style looks good on every body, so I have always just had the mind set that long + me = major fashion blunder.
That being said, I stalk Merl's lookbook almost daily salivating at the mouth over this maxi dress and terrified to pull the trigger.
Although I desparately want it.
Like NOW.
When I found this black maxi dress by Talbots while thrifting for a mere $6 I was willing to take the chance.
I mean, I could at least get some decent blog pictures out of it right?
So here it is, From Ad to Had!

I wore a thrifted 80's Sasson jacket with an old New York & Company scarf and an Express belt.

What do you think?
Are me and maxi's like peas and carrots?
Or oil and water?
And more importantly, should I buy Merl's dress?
I really, really want to own it.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

November 11, 1973

On November 11, 1973 my Dad was supposed to march in a Veteran's Day parade with the Coast Guard.
His plans changed last minute because I decided to be born.

Not only was I the first child my parents had, I was also the first grandchild on my maternal side.

Extremely extroverted and slightly bossy,

My siblings did whatever I told them to do.

But I loved them even more for it.
I have been through many, many changes in the past 37 years.
And done so many things I never dreamed I would.
Now I wear so many different hats it is sometimes hard to keep track of them all.





Sister in law.



Well, you get the idea.

This life may sometimes be crazy, but I am so lucky to have it!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Great Debate

It's that time of year when the days are shorter,
the sun has a more golden shade of brightness,
and I work 40 hours in 3 days rather than in a week.
Not all only does fall bring crazy swings in temperature,
but the craziness of 4th quarter as a retail employee as well.
I feel like I blinked on Friday and the next thing I knew it was Wednesday?!?!?
How could this be?

Last Wednesday I spent my day off sitting in Federal Jury duty in our lovely state capital.
Instead of working on Saturday as scheduled, I spent Friday night and all of Saturday in the hospital with my daughter who was admitted for a mysteriously frightening illness.
She was released late Saturday (thank goodness!) and I was back to work on Sunday to prepare for an executive visit.
After working about 15 hours yesterday, my eyes were welled up with tears from complete exhaustion and frustration.
 I woke up this morning and realized it was already Wednesday and now my husband has bronchitis!
But enough about me, let's talk about my outfit:

My husband had to see a doctor today then it was off to get prescriptions filled.
Without much thought I threw this ensemble on.
Which again created The Great Debate in our household.
Hubs says I overdress and make him feel like a slob.
(Dear, I know you are really sick, but wearing your Ugg slippers to the doctor and Target today...really???)
He has actually been saying this to people too.
Like when I pulled up in the car from work on Halloween and he was trick or treating with the other moms on our block.
They commented to him that I am always "so done up" and "dressed up" and he said,
"Yeah, I feel like a slob next to her."
Truthfully, I could care less if my husband only wants to wear hoodies and jeans...I mean, if he was into clothes then I might have to fight over closet space with him!
(Me = 99.9% of all closet space, husband = less than 1% of crammed, inconveniently placed closet space!)

So when I walked into the family room this morning to head out the door with him and said,
"Is this overdressed today?"
He responded:
"As always".
And off we went.

black military zip jacket: express
ruffle cotton cardi: jcrew
stripe l/s tee: limited
belt: jcrew
jeans: express
boots: style & co
earrings: express
ring: limited
sunglasses: adrienne vittadini

Friday, November 5, 2010

To The Moon, Alice!

As a child, I had strong opinions and ideas when it came to fashion.
When clogs made their debut, I pressured my mother until she gave in and let me have a pair.
Despite the fact that she worried I would break my neck wearing them.
One winter in the late 70's, I remember needing to buy snow boots.
Instead of normal, sensible snow boots, all I wanted was a pair of some crazy style "moon boots".
There was nothing in this world I could have wanted more.
My mother and I argued and argued about these boots.
She insisted I wouldn't wear them.
I swore up and down I would.
She said they weren't practical.
I professed my undying love for them.
She finally gave in and bought them for me, under strict instruction that I was to wear them come hell or high water.

You know how this story ends, don't you?
When snow finally arrived and it was time to wear them, they attracted attention from the other students.
They were pretty frivolous boots for the hokey town I lived in at the time.
By the second day I needed to wear them, I felt uncomfortable and refused to put them on.
I will spare you the drama that ensued.

They just weren't what I thought they would be....they made me uncomfortable.

Same goes for this floral button up I found at Target a few weeks ago.
I got it on clearance, and although I am not a very "flowery" type of gal, I loved the color and the price and thought I could wear it.
When I thrifted this tweed blazer a few days later, I thought it was sweet serendipity that it matched so well.
How could it not be more perfect!
After wearing this to work all day yesterday, I felt increasingly uncomfortable as the day wore on.
The shirt was ill fitting as you moved in it.
And I decided I really don't like it as much as I thought I would.
I didn't even like the color as much after all.

At least I paid for this one Mom.

blazer: vintage, thrifted
shirt: mossimo, target
jeans: express
boots: nine west
ring: vintage, gifted