Fashion Friday and Faith, Hope and Love

Hi there, friends! It’s another Fashion Friday, and I couldn’t be happier!I’m so glad you are here to join me! The last few weeks my sister Stacey has been here to join us, but she went on a little getaway this week. Hopefully we will get her back soon!

I want to thank my son Jake for taking this week’s photos! He has been so helpful, and I love his perspective and ideas! He is so talented! He is studying both photography and film at Washtenaw Community College, and of course, The School of Life! He has for some time now been doing filming and photography with much focus on MMA fighting. He trains himself, and loves the thrill of sports video. Thank you, Jake for once again helping with my photos this week! If you would like to see more of Jake’s work, or for an inquiry, visit his business Instagram @734rocious, or his personal Instagram @jacob.kennedy21.

For our photos this week, we went out to Howell, MI. Howell has a lovely downtown area, full of Main Street charm! We had an overcast day and even a few sprinkles, but it worked out really well. We also stopped by Howell City Park for some of the photos, and I had never been there. It was absolutely lovely!

So this week, for purposes of being both fashion forward and prudent at the same time, I wanted to try something a little different.  I thought it would be fun to try all three looks this week keeping the bag, the shoes, and the pants/jeans and even jewelry the same. I actually did invest in a nicer handbag at the Nordstrom sale this year. I opted for a neutral bag. My booties I had purchased at the Nordstrom sale a year ago. I have already seen what a great purchase that was by the incredible use I have gotten from them. So that is the common thread in this week’s post.

So we will go from the ground up! My boots I purchased a year ago at the Nordstrom sale, and it is such a classic look, they offered an almost identical bootie again this year but added a few new color choices, The Jeffrey Campbell Rosalee Bootie.

They are definitely western inspired (which I love!) suede with a stacked heel and a split shaft on either side. The heel is 3″ and chunky solid, and the shoes are so comfortable!

I also did a little research on Jeffrey Campbell (designer for my boots) last year when I bought these. I like to know a little about the companies I’m investing in with my purchase, and this was my first Jeffrey Campbell purchase (1 year ago). So I learned that he is extremely well respected for his very creative, unique and bold designs. He doesn’t really like being the story. He simply lets the focus be on his shoes. I read this quote from his “about” section on his website: “With the hope to empower individuals through progressive silhouettes and achievable looks, the JC mission is to make bold footwear for everyone at an accessible price. Working towards a more inclusive and relatable future, Jeffrey Campbell strives to reflect the beauty in all body types, ages, ethnicities, and genders.” Indeed, the models he uses for his own personal site definitely do represent a base that seems very inclusive.

My jeans are also from the Nordstrom sale (this year) and they are a brand I’ve bought once before, Joe’s Jeans. They are a pricier brand than I normally buy, but they were drastically reduced for the Nordstrom sale, so I picked up a pair. I love that they fit and give solid support where I need it! I am on the curvy side when it comes to my hips and thighs, so finding jeans I feel really good and confident in is a blessing! Mine are no longer on sale, but here is a pair of Joe’s Jeans that are on sale, and they look really cute!

My sweater is a pretty floral cardigan from Target $22.99! It’s perfect for transitioning to fall. When you look online, it looks like it’s almost out of stock, but my Target had a stack of them on the sweater table. This sweater is available in plus sizes as well. I used a black cami from Soma, but it would lovely with cream or that pink in the flowers or even the soft green. Target has some great tanks at fantastic prices right now too.

I thought this church was so pretty! The First Presbyterian Church of Howell. The church began in another location in the 1830’s and this building was built in 1915. They have a rich legacy of reaching to help outside of the walls as well as within. In 1916 they added a gym and allowed local youth groups to use it. In 1918, the gym was used for WW1 Military training. In 1923 they ran a relief effort to provide support for Japanese earthquake victims. The list goes on and on. If those walls could speak!

This next top I just thought was so cheerful and fun! It’s the Ideal Star Tee by Alternative.

Do you remember that song, “Would you like to swing on a star?” This just makes me smile!

So let’s talk about this bag. It’s by Brahmin, the Nadia Croc embossed Satchel. Note its not real crocodile… its an embossing treatment done on leather.

There are variations in the colors, and I thought it would be really flexible with different colors year round. And I feel it even goes from casual to dressy pretty easily as well!

It has 2 shorter handles and a longer shoulder strap. It has ample pockets inside and a top zip closure. I’ve never had a bag like this, and I think I really like it!

My boots, bag and jeans are just chugging along, coordinating with ease!

So we’ve made this bag, boots, jeans and jewelry stretch for the first two tops fairly successfully! Should we go for a third?

Uh Oh, look at the time!

Time for our last outfit!

This top is by Sanctuary… they seem to be coming up with winners for me these days! This little bit of a flutter sleeve covers just what I need covered!  And the v neck is always a winner for me!

The Sanctuary Uptown Tiered Hem Linen tee. It comes in a number of colors, the one I chose is called “Cadet”. Also, notice the necklace I am wearing. That is my flagship all time favorite necklace, the Luna. You know what I love about it? It is big enough to be seen, but small enough that it doesn’t become the entire focus. And it also has both gold and silver in it, which means it works with any of my jewelry! I had that necklace on for all three outfits this week. It has VIP status and is a regular go to in my jewelry box!

If you can see in the picture below, on my right arm, I am wearing a beautiful and comfortable stretchy bracelet, the Anda Intention Bracelet in the color combination called “Strength”. It is gorgeous! It has a mix of neutral tones, vintage gold and some glass beads. And it works beautifully with my bag and boots and so many different tops, it blends so nicely. These are winning combinations for me!

I was thinking how pretty this bag would look with a black outfit as well! It’s kind of fun when you start playing with neutral colors and finding all the combinations that are open to you!

And finally today is such a special day! It’s my Mom’s birthday! She is such a treasure to me! In the picture below, she is the gorgeous one in the middle with the stripes on her top. She is 88 today! Also in this picture are both of my sisters, Stacey (next to me), Susan on the opposite end, and next to Susan is Megan, Susan’s daughter. And next to me is Kasey my doggy carrying her dolly (she has about a dozen such favorites).

In this picture below, we have a rare moment we caught both of my parents and all 6 of their children in the same photo (I’m in the shadows a bit- my husband Troy is next to me on my right in the teal shirt, and on the other side of me is my brother Kevin. Our son Jake is at the top of the pyramid. Our son Shane couldn’t make it (he lives in Chicago).  You also see spouses, grandkids, great grandkids (this isn’t all of them, but its a good collection!)

And below here are my mom and dad. Oh how I love them! They both are priceless to me!

They have lived through the Depression, and WW2 and so many great things and tremendously hard things it takes my breath away. And yet, they are the most loving, courageous, generous, strong and wise people I have ever met.

In those eyes is a love that never ceases. When you are having your worst moment of your life, that is when they rush in and roll up their sleeves to help, all the while telling you how you are going to get through this (when you might think there is No getting through it!). They love you when you are on top of your game and when you have hit rock bottom. Their love is completely unconditional. Completely.

At 88 and 89, I watch them and glean every single little nugget of wisdom I can. One day if I am blessed, I will be that age. They have aged so well, so selflessly. They live with joy and hope when some would have trouble ever believing it was out there. They are warriors of love and true life success stories of the most important and authentic kind. And these are my mom and dad. I absolutely adore them. My mom is like a grizzly bear in her protection and love for those in her life. I have seen her navigate storms you wouldn’t believe, and in that pint size 5’1″ body she has the grit and stamina to carry you every step of the way through your own storms if you can’t make it on your own two feet. She is my hero, she is my mom. I love you, Mom! Happy Birthday!

All of us have both the good and the very difficult things in life. It would astound you if you knew some of the parts of their life story they have endured. They also have known more joy than they ever dreamed possible with each birth of their own kids, their grandkids and great grandkids.

I don’t know what things have happened for you this week. I hope some lovely things. But chances are for some of us the story has had some adversity or challenges and possibly even heartache. They would want you to know that you are loved. You are so precious! And you matter! And if this is a hard time in your story, it will get better! Life is that way, it rolls up and down and thrills us one moment and then takes our breath away. Please remember, the sun will shine on all of us, and time will heal our wounds. You are not random. You were created and you have a purpose for all of your days. So take heart, and lift your chin up and see that great big sky and know how much you are loved.

And now I need to scoot because we are heading down to Ohio to take them to dinner! And we’re burning daylight!

I hope you have a fantastic weekend! I’ll be back Tuesday for another Tasty Tuesday!

Love Always,

Amy

“And now these three remain: Faith, Hope and Love. But the greatest of these is love.”            ~1 Corinthians 13:13

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10 comments

  1. Very nice blog today. A little nudge to my heart there at the end. Thank you for the encouraging words. And I love your jeans. Looking good, Amy! ♥️

  2. Beautiful post! Love love that Sanctuary top…it’s so me!

    I teared up reading about your parents. What a sweet tribute to them Amy. They are obviously amazing parents and you are ever so lucky to still have them in your life. Happy Birthday to your sweet Mum.

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