Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Day 339: Crossing Things Off

In seven shifts and twelve hours of working time, plus a few days off, I am heading overseas for a hiking holiday. A continuation of a journey: Land's End to John O'Groats. I need to get some things. It's always best to make a list. And cross it off.

  • Fabric for a Brownie Uniform: my hikes have 'B' based themes
  • Fabric for a Brownie Smock
  • Sundries for sewing a Brownie uniform and a Brownie smock Sewing in progress as we speak!
  • Brownie badges: only ones whose skills I can justifiably say I possess Handcrafts, Traveller, Literary Arts, Camp Craft, Communications, Emergency, Weather: I am skilled in all of those, and if you are questioning the last, I am a signed-up and paid-up active member of the Cloud Collectors community
  • An orange tie: to wear with my Brownie outfits Gifted from my boy
  • A white shirt: ditto
  • A brown beanie
  • Gloves Black, not white like Brownies, but, hey, white is a nightmare on a hike!
  • Wool Socks Some bought, some gifted—Thanks B——
  • Undies
  • Cargo Pants Well, okay, I bought two pairs. One for hiking and a skinny pair for being a fashionista in.


List_Addict               Irene

  • Gaiters The camping shop gave me the missing piece off the ones I already had and saved me a bit of money!
  • Pack Cover
  • A better Day Pack than the saggy one I currently have
  • A better Lap Bag than the baggy one I currently have
  • Merino Thermal Top Quality merino on special, yay!
  • Merino Thermal Leggings Ditto
  • Bicycle shorts
  • Camera Case Not the specific one I needed, but close enough
  • ear-Pods (earphones for i-Pods) Gifted—Thanks V——
  • i-Books set in Scotland to read while I am in Scotland How Late it Was, How Late by James Kelman (Glasgow); The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks (remote unnamed Scottish village); and; One Good Turn by Kate Atkinson (Edinburgh)
  • Antihistamine cream for horse-fly bites
  • Hayfever pills for the worst hayfever I ever get
  • Other sundry toiletries


The Outfit
Dress: Op-shopped
Jacket: Thrifted, Savers in Lubbock, Texas
Shoes: Irregular Choice 'Fresh Cut Grass'


Photographer de Jour: Moi


Who Wore It Better?



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Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Day 338: Where's My 'Jo?

I've lost my mojo. I don't breathe to blog anymore, and I don't know how to get that back. When I started this blog fifteen months ago, I had two things in mind: it would be easy and simple, just a photo a day and we're all done and onto other things that need doing; and; it'll just be for a year. Neither of those things turned out to be true. As all of you out there who 'fashion' blog know, 'just a photo a day and then you're all done' is actually a long, protracted task involving deciding, styling, ironing, location sourcing, photographing (aided or solo), photo editing, computer programming, labelling, copywriting and marketing. And from the get-go I started 'writing' too. And it was the writing I fell in love with. Too much for most people to read probably (the blog-reading public seems mostly to be about looking at pictures), but I loved the pressure to find something to write about everyday. It was good discipline. I also went shopping. A lot. Op-shopping/thrifting. And so now I have plenty of amazing outfits I need to showcase before I feel I can call this project finished. But where did my 'jo go? And how do I get it back?

Irene               List_Addict

Possible 'jo locations:

Shamesville, KY

Is my 'jo caving to the pressure to be 'like other blogs'? I have been watching fashion blogs for a year. They are mini businesses. Mine is not. Mine isnt sponsored, it isn't designed by a blog designer, it doesn't update every couple of months, I haven't lost heaps of weight and started looking like a celebrity and attended blog conferences and X-City Fashion Weeks. I talk about silliness, not clothing. I don't fit. Maybe I am ashamed of my blog because I haven't grown it—it is exactly what it was fifteen months ago.


Boredomton, ME

This is the complete opposite location from the previous. Maybe my 'jo is MIA because it hasn't changed. If I had to conduct a door-to-door search for my 'jo, this is the town I would start it in. How do I make changes to something when the changes I envisage are possibilities, are the ones mentioned above, which I am not interested in? Will I be reinvigorated by a colour change? Or is it just the plain old fact that I have ADD and a year-long project is all I can manage before a complete radical change of direction is needed? Do I actually have the staying power for a thousand and one blog-posts? Do you?


Distractaberg, FL

Other things seem more exciting. By other things I mean Candy Crush, reading (ten books year-to-date as opposed to five same time last year), Pintresting book-rooms for my house, realestate.com-ing new houses with potential book rooms. Other things seem more intrusive. By other things I mean work being too busy, work being too tiring, sleep being too attractive, people being more present, dogs being more cute demanding.


Lost-t'-plot-bury, Surrey

What is my style? What do I like? What season is it? What is in? What isn't? I really don't even know what to wear anymore. Or who I am. Maybe it is more than my 'jo missing. Maybe if I find my 'jo, I'll find myself. This is all getting much more philosophical than I realised. Maybe my 'jo isn't missing, maybe it ran away.


Missing: My mojo. Pink and yellow brindle; small beady eyes; answers to the name of Darren. Reward of ever-lasting gratitude to anyone who locates it! Call 04765356778276664572938609.

The Outfit
Shirt: Op-shopped
Cricket jumper: Op-shopped
Leggings: Black Milk
Earrings: Retail
Shoes: Irregular Choice 'Spat Attack'


Photographer de Jour: Moi


Who Wore It Better?



Putting a link on with:

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Life's A Party Dress Like It


stillbeingmolly


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Day 308: How Darby Thinks?

Don't you wonder how dogs think? When it comes to Mr Darby Pickles, I think it runs something like this:

Sneaker Thoughts:

Darby: Mmm. Why did V—— come to visit me and then lie down and nap with Charlie? Shouldn't he be playing with me, feeding me treats, taking me for a walk and then sitting on the couch so I can lick his face for a solid ten minutes every twenty minutes, or whenever he talks about Lollii? I will take his sneaker outside.

Negotiates a size eleven sneaker through a size seven dog-door.

Darby: This looks odd by itself. I'll get the other one.

Negotiates another size eleven sneaker through a size seven dog-door.

Darby: The humans are still sleeping. These sneakers smell good. I will eat them seeing as they are already here. Mmm. Tasty insteps. Just like a face, only feetier.

List_Addict               Irene

Compass Points:

Darby: There is no one here whose face I can lick for ten minutes every twenty minutes, or if they talk about Lollii. I'm going to look sideways out of the window from the bed for a little bit. Ahh, soft bed. Maybe a lie down. I need a shoe.

Finds a sandal and places it at a position roughly corresponding to North on the bed.

Darby: I need a shoe.

Finds a slipper and places it at a position roughly corresponding to East on the bed.

Darby: I need a shoe.

Finds a clog and places it at a position roughly corresponding to West on the bed.

Darby: I need a shoe.

Finds a sneaker and places it at a position roughly corresponding to South on the bed.

Darby: Mmm. Smells delightfully shoe-y no matter which way I turn! Who needs face licking anyway.


Channelling Casanova:

Darby: I've sat on people's heads when they're sleeping, been for a walk, eaten breakfast and napped, what should I do next? What's this?

Sniffs at a porcelain cup with a table bouquet in it.

Darby: Mmmm, garden-y. Might just have a chew on this. Oh? Water on that board with all the plugs coming out of it, that shouldn't matter. What's B—— doing?

Walks into the bedroom with a rose in his mouth, leaving behind a strange electrical smell.


The Outfit
Clearing the Closet: It’s time to go green but comfy t-shirt with holes.
T-shirt: Op-shopped
Skirt: Op-shopped
Belt: Thrifted, Savers, Lubbock, Texas
Necklaces: Retail
Socks: Target
Shoes: Swedish Hasbeens


Photographer de Jour: B——


Who Wore It Better?



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Friday, March 28, 2014

Day 307: Escape To The Country

Many things waste my time. Or I find many things to waste it. Is 'waste' the right word? Is procrastination a bad thing? Or is it just focus in other areas, in other interests, than you thought you would focus on when you got up this morning? Which of these is a 'waste' of time: Candy Crush Saga; reading other people's blogs; Pinterest; reading books; sleeping; working (duh, stupid question on that one); or; realestate.com? That last one is the procrastination-de-jour currently keeping me away from the writing of blogs that used to fill each and every day of my life. I'm itching at the bit to buy a house.

Irene               List_Addict

And boy, is it stressful. I am feeling ill from the seriousness of it all. Ulcers, headaches, pimples. What happened, you see, is we found the 'perfect house'. We shouldn't have even been looking. We hadn't seen a bank or a broker about how much we could borrow. We had looked on the Internet, and given ourselves an uninformed idea of what would we could get which didn't take into account three things: my margin lending loan being 'debt', our LVR (Loan Value Ratio—that is the size of the loan in relation to the value of the property, or, less financially obscurely, how big your deposit needs to be for the bank to lend you the rest dependant on how much the house will cost. Make sense? We're learning a lot), and mortgage insurance (also dependant on the size of your deposit and crazily expensive). So when we got all excited about this beautiful 1920's house, high in the hills with a bungalow, wooden floorboards, windows to views that were unbelievable, and wanted to make an offer, we suddenly realised that even though we could make the repayments, we couldn't actually borrow enough to buy the house because of the (weeny) size of our deposit. And we learned another hard house-buying lesson: how much it hurts to have to let go of the house you love!

Hurts, and sets up expectations. We've found another one we like now. Like—on the way to love—but not yet love. It's much cheaper. But it seems not cheap enough for what it is and what the others in the area have sold for. Knowing more is not making anything easier. Buying a house is a funny thing. It is unlike anything else you will ever do. What do you want? What is a deal-breaker? What do the other people buying it with you want or think are deal breakers? Is this house the best or will something else come along? If we don't take this one will nothing else come along? And then—the game! They say they want X, but they actually want X amount plus forty thousand; you offer X amount less twenty thousand, they come back saying they want X amount plus fifty thousand, you offer X plus five thousand, they ... You get the drift. The good thing about not loving, just liking, this latest house is we are prepared to sit back and play the game to our advantage. Aren't we, V——? Unless someone makes an offer? Oh gosh! Don't think these pimples are going anywhere soon. Or this poor blog either! Now you know where I am, in case you were wondering. Back to you sporadically, xxx.

The Outfit
Clearing the Closet: It’s time to go amazing Mexican shirt that has lost all its dye
Top: Mexico
Skirt: Op-shopped
Gloves: Macy's, New York
Shoes: Irregular Choice 'Summer Berries'


Photographer de Jour: Moi


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Thursday, March 20, 2014

Day 306: The Boy Next Door

A small miracle happened. I finished a pledged-to-a-reading-challenge book. No. Wait. It is even more exciting than that. I finished it during the challenge! I know. Me too. Shocked. But reading is getting much more of a look in this year. To the detriment of blogging. My couch is so appealing. It lets me sit on it and play Candy Crush, read people's blogs and read books on my Scribd account. I'm having trouble getting other things done. But I got 'Romantic Comedy' from Book'd Out's Eclectic Reader Challenge 2014 done, and here it is:

Meg Cabot's The Boy Next Door.


Irene               List_Addict

I love to watch Romantic Comedies: I've not really ever read them. Bridget Jones's Diary excepted. This is what I like dislike like about a challenge that shoves a boot into your backside and pushes you out of your comfort genres. Why don't I read Romantic Comedies? I think I like my reading to be more 'thought provoking' and I surmise (probably unfairly) that the genre won't supply that. For 'easy reading' I go to crime or suspense. I do the same when I want to watch something that allows my brain to just absord rather than interpret. Maybe I like the macarbe rather than the delightful. Maybe I am a glass-half-empty kind of girl. Maybe I think Romantic Comedy is just too 'nice'.

The Boy Next Door suckered me in and spat me out at the other end as marginally converted. It did that first by being epistolary. Written entirely through emails. Cleverly. It portrayed character, relationship, tone and action without ever putting two people together on the same page. Being a heavy subscriber to the word-quirky, I was won over immediately. Then it threw in several sub-plots—including suspense. If you are still reading this I am guessing you know what you are getting into and so I don't need to tell you that plot-outlining spoilers follow. Perpetually late Gossip columnist and Winona Ryder afficionado, Mel, is late again to work after she finds her cranky and elderly neighbour assaulted and unconscious in the flat next door. While her neighbour lies in a coma, someone has to look after her pets, and if Mel is to keep her job, she needs to get hold of her neighbour's nephew. The nephew turns out be quite the catch for jaded-in-the-boy-department Mel. But is he all he appears to be? And is there something more to what happened to the neighbour in the first place? There is a serial murderer running around NYC after all. Sure, it was a little twee. A tab predictable. A smidge cheesy. And possessing of a typically Rom-Com ending. But I gleefully picked up my iPad and hit the Scribd app at any possible opportunity. That's not a bad thing. I don't know how quickly I will jump on the Rom-Com reading wagon again, but I am not as cynical as I was.

Okay. it's not so much a review as a conversation with the Internet: I'm not a traditional reviewer. Check out more Eclectic Reader Challenge 2014 reviews here if you after more great reading ideas.

The Outfit
Clearing the Closet: Yellow Singlet. I'm getting desperate
Dress: Op-shopped
Singlet: Retail
Jacket: Thrifted, Savers Las Vegas, Nevada
Necklaces: Retail
Shoes: Irregular Choice 'Can Can'


Photographer de Jour: Moi——


Who Wore It Better?



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Friday, March 14, 2014

Day 334: My Mad Face and My Happy Face Are The Same

Caution: if you haven't been seduced by True Blood and plan to watch it (or read it) at a later time, this contains spoilers.

People tell me they have stopped watching True Blood because it got silly. My mum said that, but I feel uncomfortable talking to my mum about this because it is a little lot racey, and I feel weird about my mum watching racey things. A couple of people at work said the same thing. They said that by the time Tru Blood got to its fourth or fifth season, it got ridiculous and unbelievable.

List_Addict               Irene

Okay, let me get this straight. So it wasn't silly when Vampires came out of the coffin and started mainstreaming with normal society; drinking a synthetic blood to enable them to stop eating people. It wasn't silly when vamp blood, better known as 'V' was revealed to be a drug—making you strong and healthy and super high. A mind reading protagonist and a shape-shifting bar owner: not silly. And I am not even going into the silliness that exists in every vampire-related story (Buffy, True Blood, Twilight, etc, etc) that involves an undercurrent of sexual attraction—namely the logic of a heart-beat-less creature being able to raise a heart-beat-related body organ for the purposes of lovin'—if you get my drift. Before we get near to seasons four and five, we come across Wicca, bull-headed gods, werewolves, were jaguars, Faer(ies) and their magical qualities—and the fact Sookie is one. And yet, it 'gets silly' after that?

V—— and I just finished watching the fifth season last night. We're in mourning for the sillinesses we will be without until they release the sixth. I love silliness. It removes you from reality, and there is something lovely about that. The soundtrack is sublime. The characters are artful and either charming, or people you love to hate. Who isn't sad with Russell Edgington's true death? I told you there were spoilers. There is so much to choose from in the way of vampire/zombie/supernatural entertainment. It is like the colour cream (impossible to choose one amongst the plethora of paint samples available, and you won't really know the difference once you have chosen and painted it on your wall). I'm glad we were introduced to True Blood. Are you a fan? Do you think it is silly? What should we watch while we wait for the release of the next season? I'm thinking American Horror Story.

The Outfit
Top: Op-shopped
Tutu: Sock Dreams
(Weirdo) Leggings: Op-shopped
Shoes: Irregular Choice 'Magic Pony'


Photographer de Jour: B——


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Monday, March 10, 2014

Day 337: Reading the Swing

I won another book on Goodreads (whoo hoo; the first was Dean Blake's Surface Children). It's the beez-neez to see the email saying you have won and to wait for the parcel to arrive. Excitement. You can do it too. Join up to Goodreads, go into 'giveaways' and enter as many as you want. (I usually have seven entered at any given point—when I remember. It seems a good number. Fair, without being greedy.) I'll also have a Quarterly Box from Book Riot zooming my way soon. The pressure is on to decrease the 'currently reading' pile significantly (wish item no. 46 here) before these two arrive and increase it again. That said, I have finished three books lately, and also see a film, so here is a little cultural run-down from my recent life:

A Necessary End by Peter Robinson. Book three from the current 'crime series' I am pursuing. Written by a Canadian author, this series follows the crime solving endeavours of Inspector Alan Banks in the (not real) Yorkshire town of Eastvale. Like Midsomer county, Eastvale has a proportionately high crime rate for such a small section of England. And even though the body count is unrealistically high, this series is quite enjoyable for the rest of the reality that inhabits it. A detective, slightly, but not overly flawed, going about the business of detecting. As opposed to forensic pathologists, or anthropologists, or geophysicists, or amateur sleuths or vampire hunters or psychic nuclear anatomists or ancient Vatican scholars. Just police work, solving crime, having a beer.

Crooked Little Vein by Warren Ellis. A dimension away in detecting from the previous book. This comes over hard-boiled from page one. And silly. Commissioned by a high ranking Government official to find the true Constitution—a book passed from person to person, since it was written, and purportedly possessing supernatural powers that 'will make the world right again'—our private dick protagonist and his newly-met assistant/lover take to the cities of America chasing one depraved temporary owner after another. The novel treads a narrow barrier between comic characters brought to the written word and shock-for-shock's sake. I suppose, for me, he stayed balanced on the tightrope, because although it was silly, I stayed the course. More than stayed the course actually, I turned pages beyond reasonable bedtimes.

List_Addict               Irene

The Road by Cormac McCarthy. Dystopia, like zombies, is trendy right now. But this dysopian, post-apocalyptic novel is so incredibly different from all the others in this category. It is quiet and small but heavy, dragging your heart to your stomach. Names, grammar, everything is sparse and hungry. Hope is the grey ash that covers everything, unallowed, by the freezing rain and snow, to rise or float—or even disappear. If social media is truly an indicator, this book divides people between hate and love. I suppose dystopia is more exciting when you can fight against the authority and fall in love with two men and have a costume designer who makes dresses from fire. This dystopia is probably too much like what would happen if we really did destroy our world. This touched my soul.

The Wolf of Wall Street. A swing of the pendulum; the quiet power of The Road juxtaposes emphatically with the flamboyant superficiality of The Wolf of Wall Street. It's been described as indulgent porn, but I quite enjoyed this long movie. (Gold Class cinema was worth the money: a three hour long epic). It typified the eighties psyche. Leo Di Caprio is brilliant and can essentialise the spirit of the eighties in a wiggle. And the scene where he was off his face on vintage prescription medication (is there such a thing?) was hilarious, even though I felt bad laughing at a drug addict. Sure it had orgies, sure it had excessive drug use and obscene greed. And even despite a simple story, I was entertained for the full three hours. It may be excessive, but that is its subject matter so we can expect nothing less.

The Outfit
Top: Op-shopped
Cardigan: Thrifted, Savers Las Vegas, Nevada
Skirt: Gifted, Passed-on
Necklace: Retail
Shoes: Irregular Choice 'Jam Tart'


Photographer de Jour: Moi——


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