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Remember the 5th of November

“If you don’t do wild things when you’re young, you’ll have nothing to smile about when you’re old!”

For those of you that know anything about the history of England you will know that today, the 5th of November, is when we celebrate Bonfire Night.  Guys Fawkes was the reason Bonfire Night started, and his story is pretty gruesome.  He tried and failed to blow up the Houses of Parliament, was held as a prisoner in the Tower of London until he was executed.  So, being a country strong on tradition, ever since then we have celebrated his failed gunpowder plot by putting a stuffed Guy Fawkes on top of a bonfire and burning it to the ground.  Kind of crazy when you think about the history, but as I was growing up I didn’t realize all that history (as I am sure many of the youth now don’t either) I just enjoyed a time to hang out with friends and family, with treacle toffee, parched peas, parkin (to name just a few of the foods we ate) along with some fireworks.

Since obviously we don’t celebrate the 4th of July in England, this was when we got to let off our fireworks and have a good time.  I must admit, I do much prefer fireworks in the summer than in November when the nights can be very cold and quite often rainy.

You might be wondering why I am telling you about this good old English tradition – well obviously the first reason is that today is the 5th November, but secondly it’s because as I sit over the other side of the Atlantic from my home country I realize that there are a lot of things, whether the reason behind them are great or not, that I miss about England.  I have traveled back there now twice in the past 2 years, and the more I go the more I realize that I had an amazing upbringing and I am very happy for the life my parents gave me over there.

There is a lot to be said about tradition and nostalgia.  There are a great many traditions that I brought over with me and I share with my family.  Remembering where we came from is a huge part in recognizing and being grateful for where we are today.  I have no plans to move back to England, however, I miss my friends, and I definitely miss a lot of the history that is everywhere over there.  It has made me feel like I want to take my kids (now that they are older) to see some of the sights, to walk down memory lane with me, and to see where I grew up.  My youngest two boys have never been over there, and I think they would love some of the places – who doesn’t love a castle or two?!

There have been times in my life when I have gone through hard things, one of which was moving over here to the US as a single mum…but now as I look back I can be grateful for that trying experience because it shaped me into who I am today.  So as I sit and think about my life and the things that have made me stronger, I feel nothing but gratitude and appreciation.  There are rewards from trials but only if we let ourselves surrender to the good that came from it.  I know in some things it is harder to find something good that came from it – and it may be something as simple as meeting someone that helped you through or admitting to yourself that you need help (a challenge for me)…

Wherever you’re from, whatever you have been through, looking back at your life with fondness and love is the only way that you can move through today into the rest of your life.  After all, nothing can drag you down if you’re not holding on to it!!

Have a fabulous Monday…

You can shop my outfit and similar pieces by clicking the links below…

 

Pay Attention to the Details

“The difference between mediocrity and excellence is the attention to detail!”

After just returning from a vacation staying in a cabin in Montana, river rafting, hiking and horseback riding in Glacier National Park, mountain biking and fishing at the lake, I was seriously craving dressing up and getting ready this morning.  I don’t know why but I always seem to focus so much better when I am dressed and ready to go.  I kind of have a hard time focusing on doing anything work related when I am vacationing (I guess that’s a good thing), unless something needs to be done.

I try to set aside some time to post, write, and even take pictures, but honestly, I get so busy making the memories that I forget to capture them on camera.  Anyone else have this happen to them?  Sometimes Brandon will say “let me take a picture of you, or the whole family” and that’s the first time that it occurred to me that I might actually want to be IN some of the pictures I take 😉

As I think about dressing up and dressing the part, the biggest challenge that I see people have is the lack of attention to the details.  It’s easily done, and it’s also easily forgotten.  I may be a little crazy because I notice everything about what someone else wears, I notice ALL the details, so when I am building my outfits, the jewelry, the bag, the shoes, and even the jacket or coat carry equal weight to the outfit I am wearing.  Sometimes wearing a plain dress is perfect, but it can lack a little “oomph” if you don’t add some great accessories or shoes.  One of the easiest outfits to take when you travel is a plain, versatile, wrinkle-resistant, dress or jumpsuit, then add a funky pair of shoes, a scarf, a belt, some chunky jewelry or a bright bag.

 

 

In today’s post I wanted to show the baby blue bag that I posted about a few weeks ago, because the color, the strap and the style make it completely unique and noticeable.  I didn’t try to match the shoes but picked a neutral White pump, and wore this with some versatile, comfortable and cool chambray pants.

I may or may not be a little bit of a shopper (I will deny it if you ask me), but I do know that I am always looking for some great statement pieces that I can use with multiple outfits.  I have quite a few pairs of shoes (I know, hard to believe), I have quite a few handbags (again, hard to believe) and as for my jewelry I sometimes can’t even find or remember some of the things I have.  I don’t recommend getting yourself into this situation, however, I do think it’s fun to have plenty of things to choose from when putting together an outfit.

 

I have always been someone that doesn’t aspire to be mediocre, but wants to strive for excellence, and that goes for my style as well as everything else in my life – so I always pay attention to the details, in every area of my life!

If you’re looking to find a great statement bag like mine, some great neutral White pumps, or some fabulous chambray pants like mine….you can click the shoppable links below!