Friday, July 29, 2016

Simple Joys of Summer


I am not cut out to be a beach girl - I get hot quickly and burn easily, and my face has freckles year-round, even under the cloudy sky or in a snow storm. But I love swimming and I love experiencing the contrast of the hot sand (or rocks) and cool water. So at least a few times during our short but gorgeous Summer, I make a point to go to one of the many beautiful beaches around Puget Sound to sunbathe and swim. 

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Midsummer Midlife Fun: Shorts


A short while ago, I showed you my first in probably a good 10 years pair of shorts (here). I admitted in that post that shorts were never my favorite garment, not even back when I was very young and yes, in better physical shape. But one thing that aging unmistakably changes for me is my level of self-acceptance.  I think like many of us, I was way, I mean waaaaay too hard on myself when I was younger. So many things don't seem to be such a big of a deal to me anymore. Now I wear jumpsuitsoverallsrompersculottes and even shorts. I don't do it to rebel or seek for approval of anyone, or for any such reasons. I do it for one reason only, and it is to drop my own inner barriers, which is all that ever matters, really. And it feels liberating!


Today, I invited two of my dear blogging friends to join me in a fun collaborative link-up (or blog hop) where each of us would wear shorts to inspire women to feel free to wear either what used to intimidate them, or what they rejected as age (or size) "inappropriate". It can be anything really, as each of us has her own inner taboos. We wanted to show that we middle-aged women (or those approaching middle age), some delightfully plump, some having troubles accepting one or the other part of our changing bodies, not only can look good wearing those "taboo" garments, but truly feel wonderful wearing them! We invite you to join us! Let us all have a good time, middle age or not, shorts or not. Feel free to simply be yourself and enjoy it. The link-up is open for one week. Anyone is welcome to participate. Link your new or old posts, visit each other and have the best time!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

There's a First Time for Everything + Fun Announcement


Hello my friends,
Before I go on sharing some photos from early Spring that I did not get to share with you yet (also, a fun announcement at the end of this post!), let me tell you what happened yesterday. It was a wonderful day - first of all, it is always joy to visit with Erica (my hair stylist), and this time it was even more fun because I took Anya with me. After the salon, I took Anya shopping for clothes for her, and as we were marching to the food court of our outlet mall, a woman came to me and said,
"I just wanted to tell you that I love your blog!"
What? That has never happened to me before! In almost 3 years of writing this blog, I have not met a reader, with the exception of my wonderful fellow bloggers (which is fantastic, though a little different). Meeting my blog reader Susan was a wonderful feeling, and she was so lovely to say that she feels that I write from the heart. Thank you so much! You've really made my day, and I will always treasure that. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Monday, July 11, 2016

Valaam: Rare Treasure of Russia


On my random trips to thrift shops and antique malls, I from time to time stumble on some really unexpected treasures, like a genuine antique XIX century Russian brass samovar (I wrote about it on my FB page a short while ago) or this beautiful Russian Orthodox icon. I don't pretend to be an expert on any of these things - samovars, icons or antiques for that matter. But I am an enthusiastic learner and even more enthusiastic appreciator of such things. So if they are within my budget, I happily offer them my home and try to find out their story. 

Friday, July 8, 2016

Old World Charm with a Twist


This summer is much milder than we anticipated. I mean, compared to last year and the year before that, it's really very mild with temperatures in mid 60s to mid 70s, most days. I don't mind - I like weather like this, as long as we have some sunny days here and there, which we do. Besides, this summer started unexpectedly in late March, and during April and May we had some very hot days. I was so happy to find a few linen (or rather linen blend) items earlier this year, like this adorable set - a top and shorts. Yes, shorts. I am pretty sure this is the first time you see me in shorts, as I haven't worn them in years. They were never my most favorite item of clothing, somehow. I remember sewing two or three pairs of shorts when I was a teen and loved playing tennis ("You play beautifully, Natasha, but incorrectly," my instructor used to say). I probably had shorts for the first few years in America too, just because they are so common here, and my first few summers in the Midwest were really hot. After that, for at least 10 years, I don't think I wore shorts. 
So here is my take on this popular summer outfit - I could not resist this charming ensemble, could I?