dare to be different

Finishing Touches

I used to be a jewelry maven.

I have an entire jewelry organizer. Drawer after drawer of necklaces, rings, bracelets, brooches, hair ornaments, all of it. Gold, silver, rhinestones, turquoise, plastic. I loved it. All of it.

Every color, plastic costumey stuff, and beaded, and then my mother’s good jewels. Oh yes, there were also scores of scarves and other accessories. Jackets…oh, the jackets! I used to really love adding the perfect touches to all my outfits. Those were especially true of my days on the conference presentation circuit and when I taught college. Everything had to be just so!

These days, I mostly live in gym clothes. For work, I own a handful of bottoms and a few conservative patterned tops. Most everything matches and I just rotate it all. 99 percent of the time I don’t wear jewelry or accessories at all.

Why the change? Looking back, I think in some ways my accessories were a way of hiding. A splashy necklace or striking ring would attract attention away from my extreme obesity.

Maybe it’s also that a change in career. The life of an elementary school teacher isn’t as prestigious or as glamourous. And most of the time I am going directly from work to the gym. It just seems unnecessary.

Don’t ask me why a few weeks ago I remembered a necklace I purchased last year. Sparkles. A friend made it and I honestly loved it. I had a thought to put it on over a dress. Matching earrings too. I hadn’t felt that “put together” in a long long time. I walked a little taller. Felt a little prettier.

So maybe I’m back into it now? Hard to say. Precious morning minutes and easy to forget after being out of the habit for so long.

But maybe on special days I’ll be more likely to dig in and add those finishing touches that make me feel special. What are the finishing touches that give you a lift?

author moments, dare to be different

Island Life

I am not on a tropical island in the Caribbean but I am on an island off the eastern coast of the United States. Just a short drive over a long bridge gets you to this quaint little area. A peaceful spot surrounded by water and simple beauty. Island time is the best time no matter what island you are playing on.

My perch where I write this post is simply amazing. An old house converted into a coffee shop with sweets, desserts and of course custard. But it’s not just what they sell it’s the ambience they supply. An outdoor area with tables / chairs / umbrellas for those who want a little shade. The fire pit for those who want to socialize in a small group by the warmth of the fire. A nice play space with corn hole and shuffle board for a little entertainment. And who could forget the kiddie castle. Yes a two story castle with a rock wall, slide and other neat spots for kids to stay occupied while their adult humans enjoy this unique spot in their own way. So many details.

Palm trees. Sandy beaches. Shady spots. Local dining spots with individual flair. Beach bikes galore. An easier pace of life. The dinner spots open at 5pm while local shops close up early in the evening. Warm days and cool nights this time of year. A perfect escape not too far for me to get a taste of island life.

For now I must go to find the perfect spot to catch the sun setting on this gorgeous evening. Tonight I’m walking to each spot I visit. Partly to get my steps in but also to make sure I don’t miss any of the fine details in and around my new island destination.

I hope you enjoyed my short island life post to help you mentally escape from whatever crazy you are in the midst of.

dare to be different

Candle Wisdom

I never thought candle wisdom was a thing until I started getting candles with wise words or wise ass sayings on them. I never really wrote about this but it’s been on my mind thus I’ll give a shout out to some candle makers who have made my day, my week, my season and so much more.

We shall start with the Evil Queen brand. This company does it right! Baddassery, flair and scents that freshen up the stinkiest of rooms. My newest scent received in a gift bag was pretty awesome (shown above), but I can’t forget the new fall scent that makes giggle and smile as I illuminate my living room with freshness (see below). The fresh apple scent is just the right amount of fall flavor to warm the room.

Sitting right next to the coffee maker in the kitchen you will find this beauty. The perfect reminder for the day. Exhale the bullshit! We all need to put that on repeat. Well I do each time I light that sucker up. These candles are such conversational pieces.

The list can go on and on but this company does it right. From clever sayings to seasonal scents to dog mom status. I do believe I’m fond of the boss lady candles as well. I may keep those as power scents for the office. I just adore them all. Way to go evil queen!

I may have just shared my favorite candle wisdom brand however there are others out their taking their shot at the big time or even local small time gigs. I get some nice scents at the local farmer markets and I seem to always get candles in my gift bags. The most recent gift exchange yielded this beauty:

I keep this bad boy on my night stand. This way I burn away the shit of the day just before I retire for the evening. Now this wise woman said: go get you some candles with style, sass and then some. I promise you will giggle every time you look at them. You might even get a full belly laugh when you light it up.

Enjoy the light of my candles.

dare to be different

Potty Spots

I was on a quick road trip recently and decided I would write about the potty stops before I took off for the day. Not sure why I chose the subject but I thought it would be interesting to chronicle so here goes.

First pit stop was in a restaurant called Milk and Honey in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I had no idea when I walked in the door it would be decorated in paint splatter but I was ever so excited that I went in so I could include it in my potty spot post. It was definitely an interesting design for a bathroom.

The next stop was a rustic potty palace. It had a roof. It had a toilet seat. It had sawdust sprinkles of sort to sprinkle on your excrements for a natural compost of sorts. It had toilet paper. It was however lacking hand sanitizer and a washing station. This rustic out house of sorts was elevated end you could definitely see the poop pile below. This was a first for me but again so glad I was writing this post when I visited this spot. It just added to the variety of the post.

Ah the Next potty spot is your average every day port-a-potty. A neat teal color with a lovely women figure on it. I’m assuming it was for women only but who really knows. This one was on my hike this day. I didn’t need to go when I was near but I did take the photo for the post since I stumbled upon it.

The final stop was at Buc-ee’s. A fancy gas station and Walmart combined to create a one of a kind roadside pit stop experience. Weird to explain but you can get gas, a coffee, a rib dinner, wine, clothing and so much more. Of course I needed to check out their facilities. A multi door stall setup built with privacy. For a gas station I would classify this as a mega potty. It was clean too.

I guess my story today will end with this toilet. A shitter of sorts. Hope you enjoyed my potty spot adventure today. I highly encourage you to take an adventure and think about one random thing to write about. Today it was my toilet adventures. Tomorrow will be who knows.

dare to be different

Crepe Adventures

I got a last minute invite to a breakfast spot I had never been to. I thought of why I shouldn’t go but then said I’ve never been so just go and check it out. I’m glad I made that decision.

It was fabulous! The table of girls did a share order so we could sample and to my surprise I loved all of it. Not just one, but three amazing and oh so different crepes.
First one was a sweet one. Big mounds of Chantilly (whip cream), fresh strawberries, and just a little drizzle of other sweetness. Great presentation and such a delicious delight that seemed so light. Maybe it felt light as we shared. No photo as it was gone fast.

Next one was eggs, chicken, and brie cheese. I wasn’t sure if I would like the chicken but it was flavored so well. Paired with the eggs and cheese was just right. It was not long until it was all gone. Every item on the crepe was just right. The seasoning. The presentation. The flavors. A repeat order for sure.

Number three was mushrooms, mozzarella cheese and strips of fancy bacon. A little crunch. A little munch. A lot of goo from the cheese. Oh was it tasty. Another one down the hatch. There were a lot of mushrooms but they tasted good and were sliced just right. I could see the care of presentation in this dish.

This little place was a great find. We all had so much fun we invited a few friends to go back the next day. Guess we needed to try some more crepe flavor combinations. So many to choose from. I am so glad I took a chance on a new place.

I almost forgot to mention I grabbed a coffee to go. It has a twist I couldn’t resist. Ice cream, caramel, espresso and Chantilly. Yes more whip cream. It tasted so good on my drive home. Sneaking a peek under the lid was confirmation of the goodness.

Until next time. Take a detour. Try a new place for a change. You might be surprised what you find.