Why should I feel like I don't want to answer the door because of the way I look on these comfy outfit days? I still want to look put together. I won't do a full face of makeup, at the most, I might add a little lip-gloss and a single coat of mascara to the upper lashes. But not necessarily. I've done nothing with my hair in this photo just ran my fingers through it and I have no makeup on. Natural is beautiful also and I often go a for a week without touching my makeup bag. But I do like jewelry, its shiny and adds a touch of whimsy that I find very appealing. Anything that makes me smile on a day where I want to feel cosy and comforted is allowed.
A quick note. This blog isn't sponsored in anyway, I'm just sharing some of the things I've purchased on a tiny budget that give me pleasure. Links in photos are provided for your interest only.
I like to color coordinate what I team the comfy pants with. I have a very long striped pink grey and blue T shirt that is oversize. It's actually a nightie but the grey stripes match my pants and the pink matches a cardigan I bought recently at Kmart Australia.
The cardigan is blush pink and is so soft and not in the least bit bulky. It matches some pretty rose gold and blush pink earrings I also purchased. At $4 they were a steal. I also bought a necklace and bracelets in the rose gold for around the same price. I've worn them a lot this season. I'm loving the blush pink colors and little Eiffel tower on the bracelet because they appeal to my romantic nature.
Taking a cosy comfort day is one way I accept the need to slow down and take a break. It's a gift of comfort to myself and it creates a window of time to do things that I don't normally have time to do. Like make a big pot of vegetable soup and scones for lunch or go through my craft cupboard and give that a refresh. Writing wise I might leave editing for another day and instead, cut out inspirational pictures from magazines or brainstorm ideas for a new book.
I hope you enjoyed what inspires me to relax and live life at a slower pace, at least for a day and feel good about doing it.
When Valentine’s Day rolls around I want to look romantic. I like to style my hair in romantic waves and curls and wear makeup. Not least, I’ll choose to dress romantically, even if it’s a dinner I cook at home. Sam and I have been together for four years so we’ve notched up a few Valentine’s day dinners. He’s not super romantic, but goes along with it all to please me. There romance in that.
But not everyone is in a relationship, so to those of you who are single, I was single for a while too. Celebrating Valentine's Day was still fun for me. One year a friend invited her women besties over to her house for dinner. She’d decorated the room with hearts, and we were all dressed up and drinking champagne and toasting each other a happy Valentine’s day. Love comes in all shapes, and types so you can still enjoy the spirit of romance and the day devoted to love with an outfit that makes you feel romantic.
So what do I mean when I say dress romantically? For everyone, that’s going to be a bit different so I wouldn’t like you to think that my style of romantic is for everyone. However the color red and pink preferably together say Valentine’s day. For me flowers are also synonymous with romance. This year I’ll be wearing a dress (pictured above) that I wore to a wedding last year (you might have seen it on my Instagram feed). It has a black background and has a stunning border of pink and red full-blown blooms. They also feature on one shoulder.
In years gone by a red and black dress in chiffon was my favorite. This photo of me and Sam was taken at another wedding. Sam has a matching red tie, how cute is that? I framed this photo of us and gave it to Sam for Valentine’s day the following year. For me silky, slinky and soft fabrics are the sort I love for a romantic mood. Brides choose these sorts of fabrics for their wedding dresses because they’re romantic. Lace is also used for romance, and I’ve seen gorgeous red lace dresses in the shops this year.
A word on red, you need to find a red that will suit your complexion. For me blue-based reds make my skin look healthy and cheeks pink. A yellow based red and my complexion goes grey. Don’t do it to yourself. No matter how much of a discount you’re getting it’s not worth it. Yellow based reds look great on people who can wear orange next to their face. If you gravitate to cool blues, go for a more bluish undertone.
Lastly, be comfortable. Your dress doesn’t need to push up your boobs or cinch your waist. Romance can be sexy, but it’s about love. Love your outfit and yourself in it. If you’re not comfortable, it will show on your face. You want to be able to feel the love of friends family or your partner, not how your shape wear is digging into your ribs. Indulging yourself with a day or evening of feeling lovely and romantic is the goal. Your fashion choices can enhance your experience.
I really and truly hope that you all have a very, lovely, Valentine's Day.
Sadness over losing Mum last year is still very present. Sometimes it’s worse than others. But I know what she’d advise me to do, to carry on. When I’m feeling down it can be so hard to be enthusiastic and cheerful. I find if I spend time doing the things I enjoy I can bring some cheerfulness back to remind me there’s still good in my world.
If, like me, you groan at that idea, read on. I have ways to get myself walking by doing things I like that involve taking a stroll. It’s worth trying because; it has been proven that walking is good for enhancing the mood. My Dad thinks it might have something to do with getting more oxygen to the brain, I think he’s got something there. But I also think, getting out of the house for a while works wonders too. But my daughter and I were joking that just walking for the sake of it is a non starter for us. We just won’t. However we know we’ll walk if there’s something to look at or a reason to go somewhere on foot.
I will drive to a small local lake to look at the pretty views and birds. It’s so beautiful it entices me out of the car and walking to the pier. Then I think I’ll go for a walk to see all the plants and birds on the other side. Sometimes I meet my sister and we walk around it together.
Another less obvious walk is to go to a garden centre and walk around looking at the plants. I love this because plant nurseries stock flowering plants so it’s very pretty. I might treat myself and bring home a punnet of seedlings to pot up.
The last way I manage to get a walk in my day is inside but it’s better than not moving. I park my car at one end of my local shopping mall and walk all the way down one side looking in the shops as I go and then all the way back the other side. This is great for really hot or cold/wet weather because it’s air conditioned or heated and dry.
Art and Craft
The act of making something is soothing to my creative soul. I have lots of unfinished projects to choose from so I might tinker with an ongoing hand stitched quilt or do some colouring in. Anyone else love the smell of Derwent pencils?
Christmas was a bit tough this year so I made myself think of some things I could make to lift my Christmas spirit. I saw a YouTube video of wooden clothes peg snowflakes; to me they looked like stars so that’s what I call them. Hot glue gun in hand I made a milky way of wooden stars and it worked like a charm.
YouTube creators have a lively energy. When I’ve absolutely had it with living and am blobbing on the couch but nothing interests me on the TV and I’m just over it all, I go to YouTube. When really sad, I choose an Andre Rieu video and in no time my spirit rises. He actually says a doctor told him that when he plays one of Andre’s DVD’s to patients they all feel well again. It has that effect on me too. I am feeling brighter and enjoying living after listening to a few songs.
I have some other favourite YouTube channels that always give me a lift. Women who do craft and decorate their houses inspire me to make things. Garden Answer is a lovely channel for getting me motivated outside, planting things or potting up cute little succulents.
Of course I sometimes need a good cry. But when it’s time to dry my eyes these things help me to look forward and be as happy as I can. I know Mum would want me to try and make the best of things even though it’s not how I would like it to be.
What gives you pleasure and lifts your mood? Do you know what your top three things are?
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Romance author and lifestyle blogger
My whole life is inspired by romance. I write romance novels of course but also love creating DIY's and decorating in a romantic style. I'm rejuvenating an old garden, recusing roses and planting new ones.