Its such a special time of year! As a child, we had 6 kids in the family, and I remember Mom making sure all of us were pressed and in our Sunday best for Easter! We would color eggs usually on Good Friday. And on Easter, we got up before church and searched for the eggs, so cleverly hidden all over the house! Six kids hunting meant they had to hide a lot of eggs! And there was always an egg or two we couldn’t find, probably still in that beautiful old home on Jeffrey Lane! Six baskets, six chocolate bunnies and jelly beans galore, and of course church and white shoes, and maybe a pretty new dress for the girls! My brothers all cleaned up pretty nicely, too! We were the proverbial Brady Bunch, 3 girls and 3 boys.
And then after church, it would be the best ham dinner! Cars rolled in, oodles of cousins and aunts and uncles, and Grandma and Grandpa and card tables crammed in so everyone had a seat! Every glass we owned was used, and they stood like soldiers ready for duty! Baskets of biscuits, green bean casserole, salad, potatoes, pink jello, corn, relish trays with radishes and deviled eggs! And the house would smell so good but we all waited until it was time to give thanks. Then all of us young and old would hush and one voice would take us for that tender moment where our hearts joined in thanks for the blessing of life, and family and provision and the gift of love. After a hearty amen the feast began. Afterward, there were so many hands helping do the dishes, and the laughter seemed to never cease! Someone would play the piano, and sometimes we’d sing. Oh what good memories! I think back to those days, and I now am older than my parents were at that time! But the memories sparkle like jewels!
In my little world today, I will get both of my sons home for the weekend, my mom and dad and brother will come, maybe a few more. This year, my precious family is scattered across the map. So too, is my husband’s dear family. But the love is there just as strong, and we will make calls and send notes and think fond thoughts of days gone by and our hearts will be full of love in a season that is the essence of love in the highest form.
Well, today I reflect on beautiful memories from yesterday and dreams for the future! And part of that is fashion!
My dear sweet husband Troy took these photos, and he is my best friend, confidant and love of my life. I love doing this life with him!
This first outfit you see me wearing above and below includes a feminine blush blouse with a lovely ruffle from Banana Republic. This would be so elegant if you paired it tucked in with a pencil skirt or dressy slacks. But it also works well worn loose with a pair of jeans. I still am working on my “pencil skirt” figure, I’ll get back with you on that!
I paired it with some skinny jeans and a pair of suede shoes, not sure if these would be considered a peep toe bootie or a shootie. Remember I’m a rookie at this. But I hear the word “shootie” and I think of something I would say if Grandma’s pink jello landed on my pretty blouse! Crossover bags in all shapes and sizes are in for spring, the one I have here is “faux leather” (which means I can afford it!) and its fun with the tassel and ring (I’ve loved the tassels on bags this year!).
My necklace in this and all my outfits today is part of a Stella & Dot necklace, the Riad Layering Necklace which gives you multiple layers and options. The necklace has both gold and silver in it. I love how flexible it is! If you would like to see it with all of its layers, you can find it here on my Stella & Dot Page.
Blush is not a great color on me, but I really like it! Maybe if I had a tan it would help… but we are still a month or two from warm enough temps for that. I’m getting ready to try one of those tanning products soon (another first for me) this could be interesting. I will let you know how it goes!
Next is a maxi dress from Chicos. They had a flash sale yesterday, so I got it for 50% off (sign up for their email list, and all your favorite stores, its how you find out about the best sales! It was kind of a secret sale… if you went in without the code, you didn’t get the sale… it was not advertised in the stores. Those email lists, some even do texting, they really pay off!) Its super soft and comfortable like a long nightshirt, but the print is modern and elegant! You can dress it up or down, I chose to dress it up. Its navy, with this crisp white geo pattern on it. The vertical stripes help a curvy fit (I need that kind of help!)
It has side slits, and would be equally cute with some casual summer sandals and a denim jacket, but I chose a dressier heel for this photo. I saw it in the store this week with white jewelry which would be cute. I went a little more subtle on my jewelry.
I chose to bling it up a bit. This little bag came from DSW.
Finally I tried a “cold shoulder” top. The vote is still out on this one. I like the gold buttons, maybe I just need to work on my arms at Zumba! This top is from White House Black Market, I got it the end of the season last summer (on sale of course!)
Dear sweet Kasey thinks it looks like someone took a bite out of my sleeves! I like it, but I think I would like it better if I get those arms in shape!
Finally today, I want to tell you about another first for me this past Sunday.
My sister Stacey and I ran in a 5K! The Big House 5K!
Well, Ok, I walked and ran and walked and walked and ran… you get the idea.
Stacey has been quite a cheerleader for me getting out there and getting in shape. She sent me a note a few months ago and asked if I wanted to do this… You Betcha!
This is just before the start. The technology is amazing at these things… but that is nothing compared to the people and their stories! People walked and ran for all sorts of things. My sister and her husband are behind me, her friends to the side and in front of me, and if you look behind me at about 2 o’clock a dear friend of our family, Dan Moore is back there. He has served alongside us at our church for over 15 years now. He was there with his family as well!
For veterans, for friends and family who have battled certain illnesses, for people on their own journey with weight loss or battling cancer or any other host of things. Moms and dads pushing strollers, people in wheelchairs, I even saw a lady on crutches! Imagine the stories! It was a beautiful day and perfect weather!
It took you on a scenic route through the University of Michigan area, which is where I went to college over 30 years ago. I have to tell you it was very nostalgic to remember walking this campus as a young 18 year old full of hopes and dreams, and to be here now at this stage in life. I am so glad I did this!
The 5K ends with you going through the tunnel the football players go through, and out onto the football field (The Big House). Over 5,000 participants. What a feeling!
This is shortly after I completed it. As you entered the field, a camera captured live as people crossed the line. My heart was pounding, lungs were heaving… but I felt so alive! My sister had some of her friends (they are all U of M nurses) Stacey’s husband Matt was along too, another participant and he too works at the U.
So after soaking up the moment, we needed to climb the stadium steps to exit. At this point, my body was saying, “Ok enough already” but my heart was so full!
As we exited the stadium, tables were set with water and gatorade and protein bars. I thought, “Well that is really nice! They didn’t have to do that. How kind!” I graciously accepted them.
I noticed I was beginning to feel pretty tired. And then really tired. And then kind of dizzy. And then my eyes started getting that dark thing where you think “uh oh”. I told my dear husband Troy “I think I have to sit down, I might be going to faint.” So I sat on the concrete and leaned against a wall for a bit, and took a sip of my Gatorade. And guess who came to help me? My new friends Jeffrey and Jessica!
You can see I’m not looking so good here. They tested my sugar and I was in the 70’s so they had me eat half of my protein bar and drink more Gatorade. And sure enough I started feeling better! And a few minutes later they rechecked my sugar and it was in the 90’s. Much better! This was my first time ever to be helped by paramedics. They were so very nice! Soon I was on my feet with marching orders from them to go get some real food. I of course obliged! For a second, I was afraid that I might lose my new medal since I had to have the medical help… they haven’t asked for it back, so don’t tell them!
Back on my feet, feeling better!
Well, I was a bit tired and sore the next day but my heart was so full! And I will definitely be doing more 5K’s in the future!
I have rattled on quite a bit today, but I want to wish you a Happy Easter, and a wonderful weekend. I encourage you to try new things in this season of spring! Its a season of New Life and New Hope, of forgiveness, of love, of being redeemed and clean slates! As Christians, we believe Jesus came to this earth out of His great love for us. And if you were the only one on the planet, He still would have come. That is how much He loves you! He created you with incredible gifts and dreams. Believe it. And go for it! Your life is a blank canvas and you can fill it with beauty and joy and adventure! Just get out there and live your life to the full!
“…I came so that they could have life – indeed, so that they could live life to the fullest.” John 10:10