Just Breathe

December 20, 2012

Just breather pick for realJust breathe buttonflowers 2

Once upon a time I thought I was in control, you know, if I just set my mind to it.  Any problem I had could be solved by being more industrious or diligent.  Maybe if I researched the issue a little more, or was somehow more insightful.  Maybe if I did “this” because I’d neglected to do “that”.  Right.  Guess what?   I really do know better, honestly I do.  But I’m still likely to try to the Nth degree, dammit.  Call me stubborn, tenacious, hard-headed, whatever.

just breathe hatJust breathe hands

Between hackers, holiday traffic, work, and traveling (that part was great), it’s been impossible to post.  So, as I take a deeeeeep breath, knowing that it’s all good, let me just say I’m happy to be back after my hiatus.

Just breathe 2Just breathe pick

I’ve got a few holiday outfits in mind (and planning to post), tons of sewing I want to do, and a whole host of  presents I want to make.  I’ve finished sending off gifts in the mail, so now I can concentrate on the folks close by that I want to surprise.

I actually love the holidays.  I love cooking holiday foods, and even though my oven died last night, it’s okay.  I took the cake over to a friend’s house and while it was baking, we had a lovely time reconnecting, long overdue and meant to be.  Just breathe.

The cake was cut in half, wrapped with bows, and taken to favorite clients.  It really didn’t matter that it was half a cake instead of a whole.  Never mind the fact, that in the drama, I’d never measured the flour; it turned out to be the best cake I’d ever baked.  Just breathe.

Just breathe YES

Breathe in the smell of evergreens, cakes baking, and chicken frying.  Breathe in the smell of children, grandparents, and loved ones.  Breathe in the old and new, contentment and sadness, the yin and yang.  Breathe because you can.  It’s a blessing.

Outfit details:  Thrifted jacket upcycled into a vest, thrifted silk kimono-style robe worn upside down here, DKNY tank dress purchased an eternity ago, upcycled slip here, thrifted boots, thrifted mudcloth hat, jewelry from my personal collection, and finally, the DEBUT(!!!) of my Megan Mae buttonflowers!!!  (I was totally inspired by Amber for this outfit and those of you who know her can see exactly what I mean.)

FYI:  Megan Mae’s creations are magical.  She sent me a lovely assortment of handmade button flowers.  Little did I know that creating the combinations would become a form of meditation.  I lay out my outfit and then decide which buttonflowers will enhance the composition.  It’s a delicious moment on the right side of the brain.  I highly recommend it.  Again, that’s Megan Mae.  Check her out.  I had no idea the buttonflowers would be so incredibly uplifting.  P.S. This is definitely NOT a paid endorsement.  In fact, she has no idea I’m writing this.

Have a wonderful week.  I’ll be back with some holiday cheer, hackers and internet gods willing.  XXOO





22 Responses to Just Breathe

  1. Forest City Fashionista on December 20, 2012 at 11:03 pm

    So nice to see you back posting again, and “Just Breathe” is sometimes the best possible advice! I have loved Megan Mae’s button flowers since seeing them on Amber and I mean to get some of my own one of the these days. I hope you are able to enjoy the best that the season has to offer, sharing good food, in the company of loved ones.

  2. Vix on December 21, 2012 at 3:21 am

    Fabulous sentiment, more people need to take heed, everywhere’s full of angsty folk in a panic over Xmas.
    Lovely to see you back, looking cool, unique and beautiful. xxx

  3. Grunge Queen on December 21, 2012 at 6:19 am

    Welcome back, and it was lovely to see your traveling photos! I love your hat here, and the button flowers are pretty yet funky. Hope you have a very happy holiday season, full of many ‘just breathe’ moments! xo

  4. pao on December 21, 2012 at 7:18 am

    Yea, you’re back and into the blues, clothes that is. Remembering to breathe is such a good idea when there’s nothing else you can really do. Love the cake story. And a great shot of Megan Mae’s buttons too. Happy holidays, sweetie.

  5. Joni on December 21, 2012 at 10:15 am

    You have a wonderful week and Holiday too Jean. I’ll take time to breath in my spruce candle since we don’t do a tree. 😉 I love creating simplicity this Holiday season. It gives me comfort to not let myself get rushed or over booked. I learned this from my husband. I use to do way too much around this time but with his influence I’ve really slowed down and cut many things out. I enjoy it so much more this way.
    Love your button flowers! I have a small set I bought from Megan. I love them on lapels, hats, purses, furniture…oh, not furniture. Sorry, I was getting carried away!!

  6. Tamera on December 21, 2012 at 10:54 am

    Welcome back!!! Awesome advice for the holiday season-just breathe!!
    You look wonderful and yes, Megan Maes buttonflowers are amazing!! (And she is totally adorable)

    Happy and peaceful holidays!!

  7. Practical Paralegalism on December 21, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    I love my MMD button flowers and obi belts so much. They have their own transparent bags and are hung where I can see them and enjoy their beauty even if I’m not wearing them.

    I’d call you beautiful, artistic, and rather an upcycling genius. I’m so glad you back, Jean, and your post is very timely for me. While struggling to get my head around some bad news, it is important to just breathe and enjoy family and friends over the holiday break.

    And watch Elf 😛

  8. Louisa on December 21, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    Happy Solstice and welcome back, Jean! Love the button flowers and especially your cool hat. Hope things go better for you in the New Year.

  9. Megan Mae on December 21, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    I am so so honored to see my buttonflowers gracing the outfits across the blog-o-sphere. I was entranced by your beautiful hat and then saw the buttonflowers! I’m very glad to see you back and smiling!

  10. Beth on December 21, 2012 at 5:02 pm

    Hello! I’m here from Megan Mae’s blog – I too am a HUGE fan of her buttonflowers. They add the right amount of flair to any outfit and I love what you’ve done with yours!

    And I hear you – it is a stressful time of year as much as it a joyous one too!

  11. Lisa@Dreamz~n~Wishz on December 21, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    Hi, Jean… You sweet thing, you. Thank you for stopping by. My blog reading has so fallen by the wayside and I really miss it. I must spend some time catching up over these next days.
    You put together a wonderful outfit. You’re talented like that. Can’t wait to see what else you have planned.
    Wishing you a lovely holiday and a Happy New Year.

  12. Jane on December 21, 2012 at 6:50 pm

    Great to have you back and wise words indeed.

  13. Sue @ A Colourful Canvas on December 22, 2012 at 1:34 am

    Jean, you look serene and beautiful. Why is it that we forget to really breathe. Thank you for the reminder. I absolutely adore your hat, and had not heard the term mudcloth hat before. Now, I will have to check out Megan Mae.

    • Jean on December 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm

      If you google mudcloth, you’ll get lots of information. It’s a fabric from Africa that’s traditionally dyed with fermented mud, with endless variations in the pattern. It’s an extraordinary art. I have a treasured piece that I use as a wall hanging.

  14. Melanie on December 22, 2012 at 4:11 am

    That last photo of you seems to sum up what you’ve written. And the fact that you whipped up that cake without measuring makes you inhumanly wonderful – not to mention it was your best ever. Something is going right over there… Megan Mae’s buttons are the perfect accent for your beautiful outfit. I hope you continue dancing through this holiday season! Good to see you again.

  15. Raquel on December 22, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    Jean, So wonderful to meet you at last! I was floored as you could see. What an awesome blog post. A reminder to stop and take in the season and not to just barrel through. I love your silver jewelry I meant to tell you that. And the hat and creative way you put the outfit together. Looking forward to reading your blog and seeing more of your creativty in the future.

  16. PamMarie on December 22, 2012 at 6:58 pm

    I’ve been doing a lot of breathing and reflecting since the horrific shooting here in CT. Today I attended the funeral of one of the victims. I have been inspired by the family’s faith and incredible strength. I’ve always tried not to take things for granted. Now I am more appreciative of the people in my life, the beauty of our world and the peace I have knowing He is in control. I wish you a blessed Christmas with your family and a very creative, colorful New Year.

  17. Joyatri on December 22, 2012 at 11:38 pm

    Nice to see you again, looking radiant as ever. Ah yes, the illusion of control. I don’t know if it’s getting older or multiple trips to India (where it’s best to expect the unexpected) that have helped me give up that illusion. Thank you for the reminder.

  18. pastcaring on December 23, 2012 at 10:31 am

    You’re back, looking beautiful. And breathing, always a good sign!
    There are so many trials and exasperations in life, and they often seem to all come at once. It takes real strength to remain calm and not feel overwhelmed. I love the sense of serenity that you exude, Jean, I think you would be a wonderfully reassuring friend, full of calm good sense and humour in the face of crappiness!
    You look as elegant as ever, love that cap and all your jewellery, and your arrangement of Megan’s button flowers is lovely.
    I am sure that delicious cake with the unmeasured flour is a metaphor for life – sometimes you don’t plan, accidents happen, but it turns out Ok in the end!
    Happy Christmas to you and your family, Jean. xxxxxx

  19. Amber of Butane Anvil on December 23, 2012 at 10:59 am

    My goodness dearest Jean, I am so honoured – thank you!!! I love my Megan Mae buttonflowers, and yours are gorgeous – I adore how they pick up the patterns and palette of your beautiful hat and underskirt.

    You write so heart-fully – wonderful cake and friend story! Warmest holiday wishes to you and yours, and always so much love, xoxo

  20. The Style Crone on December 27, 2012 at 10:25 pm

    So happy to see you back in all of your glory. Yes, just breathe! The mud cloth hat is a dream and I love how you arranged Meagan’s buttonflowers in a stunning bouquet.

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