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Inspiration for living a luxuriously and balanced life

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Style Statement Make-over~ Are your clothes speaking your language?


If you have been looking in your closet and can't quite understand what its trying to say, it may be time for a Style Statement Make-over. It has been a very long time since I understood what my clothes were trying to say - to be more percise its been almost 4 years. As I'm no longer part of the corporate world ~ suits just don't quite make the grade at physio therapy or rehab appointments; my casual clothes, well lets just say the nasty washing/drying machines and dry cleaner have shrunken them almost 3 sizes in the past 3.5 years. Of course when it became clear pyjamas and sweats (the wardrobe du'jour) just weren't going to be appropriate  it was time to go shopping!!

In therory this was great, but what happened was I my brain was still buying for a life I no longer had. So, yes the "new" clothes fit, but remained impracticle for a life of medical and therapy appointments. This past year has been a growing year -not just out and on the scale- but in realizing that I truly was in need of a NEW Style Statement. More importantly I need to define  "SmartCasual" which is a term my friend N. and I came up with to describe my wardrobe requirements.

Since the Seasons are about to change, and many of us are alraedy thinking Autumn and dreaming of the items we want need, I thought it would be a great time to start and share what I'm doing. It doesn't matter if you are in the process of re-inventing yourself, changing your wardrobe style or just want to get organized for the season ahead - I hope you join along. It would love to hear about what great steps, tips you use to organize this weeks items.

This week I'll be working on:

Foundation Items (otherwise known as clothing which touches your skin before all other clothing):
Here are some steps to help get those drawers organized:

Step One ~ pick an area to start with. N. suggested that I start with my foundations drawers.
 
Step Two ~ layout 3 laundry baskets (or any baskets, the idea is to make sorting items easy) & one garbage bag. Label 1) keep 2) donate 3) requires repair , Garbage bag - garbage.
 
Step Three ~ Try on each item ... YES... each item. Exception here is if you haven't worn it for 6 months it must NOT be kept , so no need to try on.
 
Step Four ~ Once drawers are empty, wipe them down and line with a drawer paper (scented adds a lovely touch)
 
Step Five ~ Take all items from basket 1) sort into; panty & bra sets, everyday panties, Aunt Ruby visiting panties, sports bras, garter belts, stockings/pantyhose, pant socks, specialty garmets (Spanx, slips etc.).
Step Six ~ replace these items in your foundations drawers in groups that work best for you.
 
The Goal is by the week-end to have the above steps completed so that an assessment of what I actually need (speaking the basics only) can be determined. Check back over the week-end I'll post about the progress I've made.
 
image credit: Google search

Monday, August 30, 2010

Helping Others a Temporary Escape ~Part of Picking Up the Pieces Mondays

Helping provides a distraction. Focusing on others takes us away, at least temporarily, from the hassles of work, finances, or family troubles. Helping can also block pain because our attention is shifted from personal pain to helping others. Such was the case when I started to get to know the Man (from yesterday's [Sunday] post).


Many were concerned that I would become emotionally and physically drained. I on the other hand was happy to be able to do something other than just lay in bed or the couch between Medical appointments focusing on the life I no longer had; and if it was helping someone for me to listen – then I would listen. As we continued to speak on the phone and in person a friendship started to develop. We could relate to each other in ways that others could not – He had lost a part of himself; me it felt like I had lost so many parts of me, I wondered if anything could be salvaged. We were both at cross roads leading to a dead end.

As time passed and I grew a little stronger to start going out of my house, another reality started to set in – cars, groups of people, loud noises were now a real setback for me. This Man had a family country home and suggested that I consider joining him on his next trip. After little thought I agreed, so off we went. The next few weeks became a time of running away from both of our lives and the emotional and physical pain that we suffered in our own ways.

The time in the country, being surrounded by nature, with no reminders of the life I had lost, it must have been a form of therapy. In this setting I felt for the first time in almost a year a sense of peace within myself. What had started as a few days in the country turned into a road trip ~ You can imagine the concern my care team had. Looking back now I can see where they were coming from as this was interrupting my rehab sessions – But I also think that had I not taken the trip I may have very well entered a place where no one would have been able to reach me. Wanting to save this Man’s life took priority over ending mine.

What I want to share with others;

Sometimes prayers for healing are answered but not in a way that you had anticipated. Looking back now I see that my prayers of being able to see myself again - I was sent to cross paths with this Man – to see what he couldn’t see that he had a life to live (a mirror of what I thought I had not). In my wanting to help a fellow person – I saved not only him but myself as well.

No matter how awful your situation, know that you are still able to help someone who is in a much darker place then you. As the saying goes “when you think you have bad – all you need to do is look to your right or left and you will find someone in greater need”.

For family, care-givers and friends of someone going through a life changing event, provided your loved one is not putting themselves or others at risk or danger of any kind – left them stretch their wings. Belief and Faith are wonderful healers, if we only give them a chance.

So, you may be wondering what happen to this Man. Visit next Monday ~ As Picking up the pieces , changes to “Reaching a Dead End” series.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

An Answer from God ~ and his helping Angels

Winter had retreated , spring had come and gone and summer was now upon us, with its glorious warmth and burst of colour that only can be found in nature. Nine months had passed since that evening when in a blink of an eye my life had changed. My days were filled with medical appointments that left me with little energy afterwards. I recall thinking to myself , now what will my life will be like. It was becoming clear that I would not be returning to my corporate career anytime soon; nor would I be enjoying this summer on the beach in the latest bikini.

In the preceding months I had found that my faith had taken a leap forward – after all God had allowed me to see there really is a wonderful place waiting our arrival once our journey here is complete. My journey was not complete – so I chose to come back. But what was my purpose? Why had I chosen to come back?

Since being home my outings consisted of doctor, specialists and rehab appointments, I really had no desire to socialize and when I was dragged out by caring, loving friends – I found the people and the noise overwhelming. So when I woke up feeling edgier than normal – or what normal had become to me. I had this incredible need to get out of the house. My friend I came by and took me to the Beaches, for an hour or so. When she dropped me off I still had this need to not be in the house. I called many friends, but they were all busy. R was going to be using my backyard for a BBQ that evening – but I had no interest in attending. My friend F called back and said that she would wait to do her paper work tomorrow. She was concerned because I had shown no interest in getting out of the house, since I was home from hospital, so she wanted to make sure I got out. It was now July.

F picked me up around 9:00 p.m. – as we got into the car, she said I looked good and we would go to Yorkville (Rodeo Dr. of Toronto) for coffee. I objected I didn’t want to go there until I looked more like me, and my elbow was fixed. But she would not listen… off in the direction of Yorkville she drove. She made her way to Hazelton Ave. to park on the street. As we made our way, she wanted to check out Café Norvos , and she other places as we sent along before deciding where to go. So around the block we went, instead of cutting through the alley stores.

As we went along, I wasn’t paying much attention to people, hoping that I wouldn’t run into anyone I knew. I didn’t want them to see me in this state. As, we walked I looked up and staring at me was this man, sitting at a small table in the middle of the sidewalk (in the summer you will find many gypsies set-up small tables on the street to do palm reading and card readings). His eyes locked with mine, I recall feeling confused, his eyes were familiar – yet I knew I did not know this person. As I walked past, he opened his mouth – and said “well, since you’re hear you might as well stay and listen” I found this very strange, who was this stranger speaking to me, yet he seemed so familiar. I finally found the words to say “ I don’t know you why would I want to listen?” by this time F who had taken a few steps forward noticed I wasn’t beside her and she looked back and returned to where I was. All of a sudden she is speaking to this other guy who I had not noticed before. I looked back at the man sitting, saw he was wearing a ring … and thought what a jerk. I wanted to leave, but F was talking with the other guy, so I did my best to occupy myself looking at passersby.

The woman must have finished with the guy sitting, because now, F and the other guy were saying it was my turn. After a little discussion and F saying she was treating I had no choice but to sit. When the woman finished, (she was so bang on about, my accident, life etc.) I was ready to escape, then out of the blue the woman said “ you should go for ice-cream,” as we looked at each other – someone suggested Leterri’s for coffee, as we turned around in the direction of the café, the woman, her table her chairs – were gone. Not only gone but there was no sign of her having been there at all, we walked to the café in silence.

As we sipped our coffee, I learned that the man had lost his wife 2 months earlier in a single car accident on the 400 and that I was the first woman that he had spoken to (other than friends or family members), since her passing. By this time I was getting really exhausted and wanted to leave, everyone agreed that it was late and we should be going. The other guy suggested that since the man and I had suffered such life altering events that it may help us both to keep in touch and speak with each other - before I could respond F was volunteering my phone number.

On the way home F explained to me that since the passing of his wife the man had basically been on suicide watch. Early that day the man had accompanied his friend to the cemetery (it was the anniversary of the passing of the guy’s mother). The guy told F. that he prayed to his Mother – to help the man move forward and not give up on life.

Over the next few months I would stay on the phone with the man for hours at a time{I was still pretty much house bound, so I had no where to go}  – listening to him as he tried to go into his house and make his way to his room. I listen mostly and tried to encourage him not to give-up on life. Sometimes his friend would drive him to my home and we sit outside in the backyard and talk for hours. He told me that the night after we meant that he went home and for the first time he was able to put the key in the door –went upstairs to his wife’s office and spoke to her picture most of the night.

When I spoke to my sister about this, she said that perhaps I had been given my answer – I needed to come back to save this man from taking his life.

Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. (Hebrews 13:2)

Friday, August 27, 2010

How long is that machine going to play with my toys??



That's the sound I've been waiting for!!!


Mommy the machine made that sound...
Its done playing with my toys!

Thats my Blankie...

What else is in there thats mine?

 Rover ... I missed you...

Thanks Mommy... my Blankie is so soft and sweet
my toys smell really nice too!!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

You Can't Eat This Chocolate ... But it is so Sweet....

Chocolate Lab Puppies they are so adorably sweet ....

Double Cuteness


Royal Cuteness

Car Pooling

Sweet


See you next week ....Happy Chocolate Thursday!!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Town & Country Fall Fashion Issue

Have you received your issue yet?


Here is a little preview of what you are in for...
Loving the Monolo suede-and-rabbit Nesta booties!!!

The Louboutin pony hair and patent leather ... oh my...


Tory's look is so relaxed

Can't wait to read the article - I think I may have discovered
an other fashion style for the re-invented me

Town & Country, a cup of tea and these,
yummy home~made Italian delights ..
what more can a previous fashionista looking
 to re-invent herself ask for?

How will you enjoy your evening??

Monday, August 23, 2010

“Beyond the Physical …” - Part of Picking Up The Pieces Mondays

For those who emailed me.. thank you for your sweet words - I am OK.. Remember these Monday posts catching up to where I am today. Going back to this time was a little challenging and I apologize if its is a little scattered. Feel free to email me if you would like more insight into this part of recovery. Again sorry for the lateness of this post today...
===========================================

Having sat in front of this computer for almost an hour staring at the blank page on the screen, clicking some words followed by the “backspace” button; I realize that this is perhaps the hardest post about the accident I have sat to write. “Why?” you may be asking – well perhaps unlike the limitations caused by injuries and the physical pain, which can be seen and somewhat managed – what I’m about to share is often not seen by others and simmers lightly beneath the surface.

In the early days of recovery I sometimes felt like I was “going crazy” or was so “broken” that nothing would make me whole again. Overtime with wonderful supportive people around me; a good psychologist; and Meds I find that I am able to somehow find the strength to keep going despite;

My Reduced interest in previously enjoyed activities

My limitations (energy, attention span, information processing) in the early days often kept me from doing things that I once found such joy in – such as; going to a movie, out to eat, meeting friends for coffee, shopping, gardening , ironing my bed sheets (yes, to this day I still miss the ironing of sheets).

Sleep difficulties

At night dreams that caused me to wake up panicked throughout the night, my face and pillow damp from tears – that I do not recall crying and no matter how hard I try I can never remember the dream . I have no memory of the accident; a friend suggested that perhaps during my sleep I am somehow recalling the accident [to this day I do not know what causes me to feel that way in my sleep, and I still have these experiences, thankfully not as frequent].

Concentration difficulties

Easily distracted to the point that I forget if I have eaten or not; brushed my teeth. I try to avoid noisy places and areas with too my people. Recently I was all proud to be boiling water for some pasta – (Mr. G was home working on something and after much discussion agreed to let me use the stove while he was outside) all was going well. Then little Dolce needed to be let out – I recall thinking I can do this … so I went to let him out , Dolce took a little longer and was pulling to go for a walk – so off we went. I returned back to the house to a frantic Mr. G holding a nearly boiled dry pot. Needless to say I’m still not to use the stove unless someone is in the immediate area. Thankfully he was here to check on me and keep me safe.

Easily irritated

Today the frequency of these feelings has been lessening with Meds [discovering the right Meds has been a very bumpy road], identify triggers and removing them or myself from the situation has been beneficial to having some sort of life.

Anxiety

Being around moving cars, loud people/noises and not being able to do things that once came so easily.

The realization of how my injuries impacted my ability to carry out basic day to day functions brought with it another revelation – my future career plans are gone. Without a career, what future do I have? Things started to not look very promising for me; and that was the beginning of a downward swirl. I experienced my first complete melt down around May 2007. (Yes the first, there were 3 more serious ones over the next couple of years and many small but equally scary ones in between).

What I want to share with others;

The emotional damage is often as great if not greater than the physical damage. As the bandages from physical wounds begin to come off; the scars covered by clothing; people start to look at the person like they are whom they were prior to their detour in life. These people begin to return back to their lives – the” novelty” of an injured friend or loved one wearing off (sounds cold – BUT it is true). And the person finds themselves alone, scared and unsure of what the future holds.
The words above belong to author William Styron, and they describe his first episode of major depression.
When your loved is going through a meltdown, their world is literally spinning out of control. For them it’s like they are seeing what is happening, are hearing what they are saying, BUT I stress this …they are unable to stop. Telling them to “stop”… or saying “enough” is not going to help at all, trust me if they could they would ~ they want more than you to have this stop.

My best suggestion (I’m not a professional )– when I have been the one going out of control – what we found would work at times was someone speaking softly to me .. this would often calm me enough to get me to go and lay down.
If you feel like you are going “crazy” … know you are not alone. Speak to someone and the sooner you are able to connect with the right Psychologist , you will be on your way to a much better place.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

1st Give away WINNER IS....

Thank you for all the sweet comments that everyone left. There were 54 Participants, total entries 68. Draw was conducted the old fashion way:

Name for each entry was copied onto slip papers and folded;
Placed in draw bag;

With all the excitement of having the first give away draw - Dolce became excited too!
He wanted to enter his little bear into the draw bag...

After explaining that he was not eligible for the draw ... he is family and that
bear could not go in ( I know you are smiling .. but you try getting a FurBaby
to understand...), the draw continued. Mr. G. did the honours...


And the WINNER is...

Congratulations AtlYankeeBelle!!!


Atlanta Yankee Belle is a new follower of Falling Off A HHL, I discovered her blog via her entry into the Give away. My visit over to her corner of BlogLand, found a really sweet Blog.Show some BlogLove and pop on over and congratulate her.

Atlanta Yankee Belle, please email me your mailing address at fallingoffahighheeledlife@gmail.com and I will get your mini Lilly P. agenda and note book out to you.

Falling Off A High Heeled Life, has made it to 100 follower mark so..
Visit often .. more Give Aways to come ...


To all who entered Thank you so much for making my 1st Give away such a fun and exciting adventure. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for all your sweet comments on my posts. It is your encouragement, support, love and comments that keep me writing and put a smile in my day!!!
XO HHL

Saturday, August 21, 2010

You Asked ~ I Answered

I was tagged by Frenchy at Le Chateau des fleurs. So, let’s have some fun…


Frenchy came up with 8 questions for her recipients to answer. Then we are to come up with 8 questions and tag 8 people to answer them. After you post the post, make sure to let them know that you tagged them!

Here it goes:
1. What is your favorite time of the day and why?

~ I would say mid morning~ because I have not yet started to be too active, so my mind is not too tired and I am able to be creative.

2. salt or sugar ?

~Sugar is my Achilles heel , I really need to have less of it

3. Sea or mountains?

~The sea, I would love to wake up to the fresh air

4.What country would you like to visit and Why?

~I would love to visit Argentina, something about that country calls to me and I would really like to live there part of the year with Mr. G. of course we need to go and see if we like it first (small detail … no?)

5. Favorite song?

~The Climb by Miley Cyrus … it fits my life at the moment.

6. Do you cook? What is your favorite dish to make?

~No, when I did cook I loved to make anything with seafood

7. What is the one thing you want to do before you die?

~ Have my life altering experience (accident), help someone who is going through any life changing situation.

8. Favorite flower?

~ White Lilly

So here are the 8 questions, I'm tagging you with:
 
1. What  3 words would your friends outside the Blogging World use to describe you?
 
2. What 5 people dead or alive would you like to invite to dinner and why?
 
3. Who wrote the last book you read and what was the title?
 
4. If a movie was made about your life ~ what would the title be?
 
5. What is your favourite hobby?
 
6. Are you a coffee or tea drinker?
 
7. If you had to choose wine or champagne? and why?
 
8. How do you order in a restaurant ~ look at the dessert than order main, or just order main and don't worry about having room for dessert?
 
I'm Tagging:
 
1. Life the universe and all that's in it
2. Confessions of a Semi-Slacker Mom
3. Pink Martinis and Pearls
4. The Company She Keeps  
5. Sweet Southern Prep
6.  A Place to Dwell
7. Dolce Dreams
8. Flip Flops & Pearls
 
I hope you all play along, being tagged is a fun way to spread some BlogLove and to learn a little more our wonderful BlogFriends!!! Now go off and tag someone else!!!
 
Don't forget My LillyP Give-away ends tonight at midnight (eastern time) click here to enter, if have not yet do so!!! Good Luck to All!!!...

Friday, August 20, 2010

Auntie V visits Dolce

Mommy and Auntie V have known each other for many years. Auntie V is from Paris, France -but now lives in New York. When Auntie V comes to visit I am a really happy. She  spoils understands me and is always reay to play! Before Auntie V arrived I helped Mommy set a casual welcoming ... with lots of goodies.

Would you like some help Auntie V? I'm a big boy...

Ok ... Let's Play

Look how fast I can run...I'll get it...!!

5 more minutes ... bark, bark... ok 1 more throw..?

Auntie V stayed over night ... Yeahhh... more playing in the morning!!! It was a very nice day, so Mommy and I set breakfast outside on the patio...

Daddy took Mommy and Aunti V for dinner, I couldn't go something about they don't allow doggies in a restaurant --- don't they realize I have hair not fur? I'm just a really hairy baby...

This is what I missed out on seeing...

Daddy's dinner - Pasta Verdi with brandy sauce...

Mommy's dinner - Filleto Amalfi on veggies and raost potatoes

Auntie V's dinner - Large Grilled Shrimp with vegetables

Must convince Mommy and Daddy to go back to Paris, they let hairy babies like me in restaurants!!!


See you next Friday.... Paws & Licks Dolce

Thursday, August 19, 2010

What do you mean it’s Not Chocolate?

Chocolate liquor, which is not alcohol, is the key ingredient in the production of all chocolates on the market. Therefore "Officially" white chocolate cannot be chocolate as it does not contain chocolate liquor. The key ingredients in white chocolate are cocoa butter, sugar, milk solids, lecithin and vanilla. Be on the lookout for inferior “white chocolate” as it will contain "vegetable fat"among its ingredients.

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Unlike cocoa solids which are used to produce chocolate, cocoa butter does not contain caffeine. Additional benefits of cocoa butter used to produce white chocolate it's stable fat, which has a long life span without spoiling; contains several natural antioxidants giving it a shelf life of several years. Products such as soaps, moisturizers and other skin care products, are also produced using cocoa butter for its stability.

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Are you a White Chocolate, Milk Chocolate or Dark Chocolate lover?
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