Throwing Shade

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I don’t get out much but when I do I lose my sunglasses. Two Saturdays ago we celebrated a friend’s birthday and I left my Chloe Havana’s on his rooftop deck. Why my expensive sunglasses were on the deck and not my face is commensurate to the amount of wine I consumed before taking them off.  

Sunday morning dawned, brilliantly sunny, and my first instinct was to gather the kids for a Neiman Marcus field trip to replace the lost glasses. Reason my pounding headache prevailed and we got pancakes instead. After breakfast, we hit up Rite Aid for $13 Foster Grant aviators to hold me over until I could retrieve my perfectly good (did I mention expensive?) Italian pair.

This Saturday we visited a dear friend’s home to shower her baby-to-be. Kisses and love and a few Pinots later I left behind the Foster Grants. This friend knows me well. When she called to say her husband found them she casually mentioned she was confused by my sunglasses selection. “I told him those can’t belong to Jenn; all of her sunglasses are Prada or something.”  I explained the irony and we both had a laugh. Some behavior never changes but, I am proud to report, some behavior can.  

Today’s outfit is topped with my retrieved Chloe Havanas. I wear them all the time because are nice glasses, with polarized lenses and a good weight. The Foster Grant pair looked fine but they were cheaply made, with a flimsy frame and loose lenses that popped out the first time AJ threw them down the stairs. Today’s lesson: Invest in quality sunglasses. Also if you want a pair for free, invite me over for wine.

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Outfit details: Chloe Havana sunglasses (2014); Tart Collections dress (2015); Hermes scarf as belt (2009); Amethyst pendant (2015); Gold hoops, Mothers Day gift from Matt (2015); Kate Spade gold wedge sandals (2014); Coach Legacy purple cross body as clutch (2012)

Sleep Training 101

Recently I had the bright idea to bribe my toddler for sleep. If he stays in his own bed all night long he earns a new Lego set in the morning. I am proud to report that seven days and seven Lego starter sets later, this mommy feels quite refreshed. The arrangement is what corporate types call a WIN/WIN – except in the ways that it isn’t.

For instance, AJ now wakes at 6:02AM, on the dot, every morning. With rooster-like clockwork, he bounds into our room and bellows “I slept my own bed mommy, where’s my Lego set.”  Immediately after directing him to his prize he returns and demands that I build it. Have you ever tried to assemble Rockit the Mixle at 6:05 in the morning? I don’t know about you but my dexterity doesn’t peak until 9. 

Last Thursday I capriciously mentioned to AJ that I stopped by the Lego store. As the words left my mouth I recognized my first mistake. “Lemme see! Lemme see! Lemme see!” he repeated. I resisted, futiley, and finally let him peek inside the yellow bag. Mistake #2. “Give it to me!” he demanded. Slightly panicked, I realized my toddler negotiations were unravelling, quick. I had entered into a “mutually advantageous” agreement with a 3 year old who lacked impulse control and any concept of delayed gratification. Standing my ground, I calmly explained the difference between earning and demanding. This teaching moment earned me two bruised shins and a 45 minute meltdown. 

This morning, after watching Matt struggle to assemble Batwing, I reclaimed our power and declared that there would be no more Lego sleep prizes. To which AJ replied “OK, mommy. Tomorrow I want Iron Man.”  Fair enough.

Unlike pre-dawn City Bulldozer builds, today’s outfit was very easy to put together. Favorite skirt, Hermes scarf, reclaimed cashmere shell – 3 of 33 pieces – all within easy reach.

Outfit details: Chloe Havana sunglasses (2014); J. Crew summer cashmere shell (2007); J. Crew navy eyelet skirt (2012); Hermes scarf as belt (2014); DVF color block wedge (2014)

This girl cleaned out her closet, and what happened next was epic.

I spent last weekend peddling my fashion baggage all over Northern Virginia. It took three consignment stores (who does Current Boutique think she is, anyway?), one for-the-sisters pile and several trash bags earmarked Goodwill to shed my worn wears. So how does it feel? Simply put, it feels really good.

The creator of Project 333 suggests that clearing the physical and mental space previously occupied with shopping and storing purchases allows for richer, more meaningful experiences to enter your life. So far, its biggest impact on my life is the emotions I’ve left behind. You know that feeling when it’s 8:35 7:35 and you are frantically looking for a work outfit but you can’t even slide garments down the rack to select anything because your clothes are packed so tightly? I do not miss that feeling. Or the one when you try on a dress that you bought online for the fifteenth time and it still looks weird but it’s been over 30 days and now you can’t return it. Don’t miss that one, either.

Before I curtailed impulse shopping and minimized my wardrobe I routinely felt guilt, annoyance and disdain towards my closet. Now I feel proud, creative, savvy and mindful about pretty much everything. Three months ago I could produce any number of excuses to buy something new. Now I can’t find an excuse to buy anything at all! In fact, I missed the boat on these Loeffler Randal sandals and these J.Crew flats in gold, both planned purchases for my summer capsule, because I delayed the purchase and now they are sold out. On the bright side, I saved myself $568.

How’s this for a rich and meaningful experience? On Sunday night Matt and I attended the annual Blue Jeans Ball to benefit the Capital Area Food Bank. Impulsively, we bid $700 on a three night stay in Paris – and won! That opportunity was made possible by Project 333 – for once, an extra $700 was actually sitting in my bank account. Plus it was for a good cause. ‘Cause we’re going to Paris!

The round up of outfits in today’s post all share simple foundations highlighted by joyful pops of color. What a way to live.

Top Outfit Details: DVF wrap dress (2012); Joie military jacket (2014); Tangerine cashmere scarf, origins unknown (2012); Loeffler Randal Tasmin ponyhair pumps (2014); Loeffler Randall Industry Bag (2014); Stella & Dot Norah Chandelier earrings (2014); Stella & Dot Rebel pendant (2014)
Outfit Details: Chloe Havana sunglasses (2014); J.Crew necklace (2013); LA Made dress via Stitch Fix (2015); Coach purple Legacy tassel cross body bag (2012); Loeffler Randal gold gladiator sandals (2009)
Outfit Details: Chloe Havana sunglasses (2014); Stitch Fix top (2015); Hermes scarf as belt (2009); J.Crew Minnie pants (2013); Elie Tahari teal peep toe flats (2013) Coach Legacy purple tassel cross body bag

Coconut Wedge

No tropical souvenirs for this girl! New minimalist me didn’t flinch at the lady pedaling wraps and hair braids. Nary did a muscle in my trigger finger twitch at the thought of a purse braided from palm leaves. In fact, my only purchases were hand crafted pina coladas from the one man coconut stand on the beach in front of the resort. They were delicious, made from real pineapple, blended with cracked coconut and dark rum, plus you got to keep the coconut – a keepsake Bahamian ant farm for the kids. I also bought several dozen artisan pina coladas from the Daquiri Shack across the street. No big deal, only $6 each, made from only the freshest ingredients and SO much better than the powder mix frozen drinks they served on the all-inclusive package.

Like the perfect pina colada, there is an ART to finding the ultimate nude wedge sandal. They must be just the right height, with no unnecessary foot hug. Ankle straps are out because we all know those make short girls look stumpy. The perfect nude wedge should be dressy enough to wear to work and yet substantial enough to anchor a bikini (you know, for Vegas those all- important bikini with wedge situations). Surprisingly, cost isn’t a determining factor – $525 Prada wedges can go south as quickly as a $39 Seychelles varietal can make an entire pool season. The funny thing is that I never remember the four pairs residing in my closet until I bring a new one home. Blame it on the rum.

My travel outfit was a seasonal hodgepodge of not-new resort wear, anchored by the wedge du jour. Very happy I opted to wear the skinny white jeans before a week at the buffet. 

Easy on the rum, son
The wedges between us
Outfit details: Old Navy star print chambray shirt (2014); Lulu’s orange ikat wrap (2014); Seven for all Mankind white jeans (2012); Kate Spade perfect gold wedges (2014); Coach Legacy purple tassel crossbody (2012); Original Penguin straw fedora; Chloe Havana sunglasses