An Afternoon’s Journey

I know other parts of the country are freezing, buried under a mountain of snow, but here in SoCal, it was about seventy-five degrees and sunny (don’t hate).

It was the perfect day for a hike in the back country to inhale sandy, dirty trails and think about setting positive intentions for 2018.

We drove for a couple of hours (to a secret spot) and started walking. As the sun rose to its celestial meridian, I started shedding layers.

Does this look like it could be a Native American bedrock metate?

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Beautiful fruiting manzanita; well, I think it’s manzanita…

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We know it’s a going to be a great day when the trails are heavily strewn with coyote scat!

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And this remnant of a coyote or bobcat’s meal. Upon close inspection, it looks like part of a tail but I’m not too sure how it ended up perched on the dried grass.

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Steep and rocky.

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Stopping for a snack and water, the perfect time to touch up dry lips with a little Chanel. I’m always prepared!

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Who says leaves don’t change color in Southern California?

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There’s really nothing more soul satisfying than exerting oneself physically until you’re bone tired and then eating a huge late lunch (with french fries) and feeling zero guilt about the amount of calories consumed!

#gratitude #nature #hiking #backcountry

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You might call me shallow, but retail therapy is a THING, y’all

It’s been a DAY. Taking a deep breath. Home now, feet up, having a cuppa.
I had an especially joyous afternoon!

Let me tell you all about it.

OK. Last week I felt like crap. I had a viral lung infection (thank you for your potent little germs, Angel Boy 2.0!) that was quickly turning to pneumonia and on top of that bad news, I had laryngitis. I mean 100% no voice. I couldn’t even squeak out a whisper.  I was forced to endure a vow of silence for about 72 hours.

Now I’m almost all recovered, enough to get back to the gym and back to my real sport of choice…SHOPPING!

Yup, Retail therapy is a THING, y’all. It’s therapeutic; self care and all that new agey mindset.

I planned my day with laser precision, flexed my shopping muscles, said a mantra for extra patience, and first ran errand or two for my absentmindedprofessor son who forgot to take care of something important before he/family left for the UK, so that was number one.

Mission accomplished. (As an aside, I don’t care how old they are, it warms a mommy heart to be able to solve a problem for her child. To feel needed. SIGH.)

As soon as I got that out of the way (visualize the chaos of a post office a few days before Christmas ‘cos that’s where I was) I confess that I got a little tingle in my root chakra area (heehee) as I sped off to the Forum in Carlsbad.

Yes, a real physical reaction, like salivating over chocolate, to see what the world had to offer for purchase!

Breathe, girl. Breathe, I said to myself. Pace yourself.

Find a place to park. Universe, open up the best spot for Princess Rosebud. And then it happened. Someone pulled out of the perfect location at the exact moment I was rounding the corner. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

A quick check of my hair and lipstick, and I was off, gleam in my eye, rapid heartbeat; I bet my pupils were dilated just a bit, too.

Even though Angel Boy 2.0 already got his gifts, I can’t walk by Gepettos without popping in and getting something. Looky at this. A growing owl. Grow Owl: An owl will emerge from a tree stump. Just put the tree stump in a container, cover with water and after 12 to 24 hours, the critter will begin to emerge as the water is absorbed! Can’t wait to send it for a New Year’s Day prezzy. Just a little something cute and fun. Theo LOVES owls, so this will be something fun for the Angel Boys to work on together.

My inner GPS guided me to H&M, where I picked up some SUPER ADORABLE clothes for Mr. T. They were on sale!!!!! A total score. Three dollars for the striped shirt and seven dollars each for the sweatshirt and distressed jeans with suspenders. I cannot even imagine how precious he’s going to look. Such a little boy. LOVE LOVE LOVE.

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Across the parking lot was my HOLY GRAIL…Anthropologie. I get it. It’s overpriced but their marketing and store decor is so amazing, you gotta appreciate their attention to detail.

Here I was, back with my tribe, my people. My PEOPLE. All Christmas-y. The mall was crowded and so was Anthro.

We were all rotating in our own little worlds of conspicuous consumption- women on a mission with a very few brave men who dared to cross the threshold, and omg they all looked the same: scared, dazed, deer in the headlights. trudging around and around not able to locate the door to exit the hell they were trapped in. I almost felt sorry for them. ALMOST. No eye contact cos I didn’t want them to plead with me for assistance. Not my problem.

The checkout line snaked around the store. I was looking for something for myself. I had a “secret Santa” who gave me a little cash and I wanted to spoil myself because I’ve been a VERY good girl this year. I found this beautiful pierced tin candle. The scent is Mahogany Amber and it’s filling my bedroom with love and joy. 30% OFF! The bag and wrapping paper adds so much to the shopping experience. LOVE LOVE LOVE.

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I forgot to tell you that I went to Macy’s yesterday at Carlsbad’s other (newly refurbished) mall and bought myself an extravagant Chanel lipstick. I know it was forty dollars and I could have purchased at least three or four others for that same price, but CHANEL. Plus lots of samples, so a good deal, right? Rouge Coco Etienne #446 LOVE LOVE LOVE.

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I had a follow up doc appointment to see if I needed an x-ray (I don’t, yay!) and their office is across the street from a hospice resale shop, so I stopped in for a minute. Christmas decor was on sale, so I picked up this adorable vintage bunny ornament for one dollar! ONE EFFING DOLLAR! LOVE LOVE LOVE.

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When I got home, I found a box at the front door!!! Nestled inside was a wrapped gift from my wonderful son and DIL. I can’t wait to open it!

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All in all, a wonderful, stupendous. amazing, joyfilled day! Maybe it doesn’t work for everyone, but for me, retail therapy can turn my frown upside down, no matter what.

Love and joy to all!

A Bunny at the Beach and Chanel

Look, a BEACH BUNNY! I saw this adorable creature today at Tamarack Beach in Carlsbad.

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There are normally a billion ground squirrels that live on the bluffs, but I rarely see a rabbit, so this was a special event for sure.

Last week the temperature here was 105 degrees; today it was drizzly and in the low 60s, so I decided to take a little walk to the beach. I went the long way ’round and ended up walking about nine miles.

It’s pretty much downhill to the ocean-super easy- but that means it’s all uphill on the way home, so I’m pleasantly tired.

When I got home, I checked for mail and looky here what I found!!! A sample of Chanel’s new fragrance, Garbrielle, accompanied by the most amazing affirmation…just what I needed right about now.

“I decided who I wanted to be, and that is who I am.”

DAMN RIGHT, COCO. You got that right, GURRL.

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After enduring the shittiest of all shitshows of shitty years, swimming my way up and out and slowly being pieced back together, reforming and rising from the ashes of despair and pain, THIS IS A SIGN.

As I tapped out the letters that spell “despair”, I wanted to make sure it conveyed exactly how I felt so looked up the definition and nodded my head in silent agreement, “the complete loss or absence of hope”.  YUP. Nuff said.

The little perfumed card is propped up on my bedside table, and wonder of all wonders, there are two owls hooting to each other in my backyard.

Life is GOOD, y’all. Life is GOOD.

 

 

WTF Wordpress. Not AGAIN…

Have you noticed that I’ve been absent from the blogosphere for a few days?

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Were you wondering what’s happened to Princess Rosebud?

Did I go on a shopping spree that spiraled out of control?

Nope, no out-of-control purchases, although I did attend a Chanel trunk show and walked away empty handed, but only because the earrings I desired were clip on and not meant for my pierced ears.

Oh well.

The truth is that I was/am joining forces with other like minded community activists to FIGHT a mega mall development that would, if allowed, forever destroy our precious sensitive wetlands.

And more.

With help, I rescued a cat from a boarded up, condemned home.

I wanted to write a post about all of this, but when I opened WordPress, I was greeted with YET ANOTHER CHANGE TO WRITING, EDITING, PUBLISHING TOOLS.

WordPress, I simply cannot take these changes right now.

It’s not necessary to tweak the format.

HONEST.

And where’s the button to SAVE my work?  That teensy little word with the blue line under it isn’t USER FRIENDLY.

The whole format is NOT user friendly.

WTF, WordPress?____________________________________________________

P.S. To add insult to injury, tugboat man is again delayed; won’t be home until AFTER Thanksgiving. UGH.

 

Princess Rosebud’s EMPOWERING Solo Adventure

(Blogging from the train, which is OK except for spotty wifi and my paragraph edits aren’t working, so this post won’t look exactly right.)


“It’s never too late to become empowered” she said.

Well, thank you very much for that unwanted opinion.
At 6:15 a.m., I was the first one in line when the Amtrak Station opened up.
I’m on my way to Santa Barbara to meet my son/DIL and have a little camping and hiking vacation. This is something that tugboat man and I had been looking forward to, but alas, he was called back to work immediately upon arriving home, so I decided to be a BRAVE princess and venture forth into the big scary world all by myself.
What was I thinking??
Confession: I’m not much of a traveler. Although I do travel alone from time to time, mostly tugboat man and I are together and he takes care of everything and all I do is stand here or sit there and do as I’m instructed, moving from point A to point B.  It works out better that way for both of us if he takes the lead. I mean, he’s so GOOD at it, and it reduces my stress level (and his) if he does all the thinking.
But this adventure is all my own.
My son’s dad picked me up a little before 5:45 a.m. to give me a ride to the train station, which is why I was there bright and early at 6:15.
I had many questions for the Amtrak employee:
1. Where do I go?
2. Where will the train be?
3. How will I know it’s the right one?
4. Where will I sit?
5. Where will my son pick me up?
6. Where will I find my suitcase?
7. Will you lose my luggage?
I explained to her that I never travel alone and I’ve only taken the train one time twenty years ago, and that’s when she proceeded to give me a life lesson that I didn’t expect, didn’t ask for, and didn’t really need.
“I never travel alone.”
“Well, you DO travel, don’t you?”
“Yes, but when my husband and I travel, he takes care of everything”
That’s when she said, “It’s never too late to become empowered”
I have to admit her tone was ever-so-slightly snarky, and this was corroborated by the nice young man from the United States Marine Corps (whom I have attached myself to for dear life).
He was standing next to me listening to all of my questions and I believe that he felt sorry for me (reminded him of his mom) and felt like he was performing in the intereste of our national security to guide me on the train when it arrived, and now we’re sitting next to each other.
He’s on leave for Memorial Day to his family ranch in Los Osos.
Of course, I thanked him for his service and I must say that I feel very safe and in good hands until my son collects me from Baggage lol.
Stress level is high, but if I could make my way SOLO to Goettingen, Germany to stalk visit my son while he was there for his junior year abroad, I can certainly sit on a train for four hours with my own personal USMC escort, dontcha think?
After all, like I keep telling my Angel Boy, that umbilical cord will stretch, but will never evereverever BREAK.
There isn’t a place on earth he can go that I won’t follow.
I know that sounds like a threat, but it’s really not. It’s just a mother’s LOVE.
I stand corrected…an EMPOWERED mother’s love.
Here’s a few pics from the train…
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Princess Rosebud Ponders a Dilemma of Gigantic Proportions

Sophie's Choice via Google Images

Sophie’s Choice via Google Images

That’d be me, of course.

Princess Rosebud.

With a dilemma.

An enchanting sort of dilemma.

OK, here’s the deal…

That husband of mine-who-is-never-here-but-really-exists-really-he-does has been out to sea on assignment since March 10.

Yes, that’s correct — MARCH 10.

A very long time indeed, and as it happens, my birthday is coming up VERY soon.

I don’t really care to celebrate the day but I DO love to get a prezzie. (Or two, as you’ll see.)

I’ve had my eye on this little minimalist necklace that is all the fashion rage; hub told me to go ahead and get it, which made me verrry happy, and that’s what I did.

I drove to Bloomingdales in Fashion Valley; saw it, loved it, put it on, bought it,

Just like that.

It’s the perfect little sparkle to wear all the time; either by itself or layered with…other necklaces.

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(Here’s where it all goes wrong (or right, depending on your point of view.)

Floating on a retail high, I strolled around the shopping center, wandering into Hermes, Carolina Herrera, Tory Burch, Gucci, Prada — there’s no Chanel at Fashion Valley, so you’d think I’d be safe from temptation, right?

BUT.

Drifting through Nordstrom, running my hand through racks of silky boho blouses and scarves, I discovered a secluded little alcove that was all CHANEL.

Iconic Chanel tweed suits, timeless classic beauty in the $5000 and up price range — good to look at, but they’re not coming home with me, that’s for sure.

But then.

I turned around and saw a glass display case full of Chanel jewelry.

DID YOU HEAR ME?

Full of Chanel jewelry.

Uh oh.

The very nice sales associate brought out one piece after another and I tried them all on.

“Have you seen this one?” she said.

“It’s sparkly” she said.

OHMYGODOHMYGODOHMYGOD.

I’ve always always wanted the little CC logo pendant.

I died. What do I do? Not half an hour earlier I purchased a 14K diamond necklace that was supposed to be my birthday gift from my EXTREMELY GENEROUS absentee husband.

Here’s the dilemma:

  • Do I take back the first necklace and buy the Chanel?
  • Do I walk away from the Chanel?
  • Do I keep them both?
  • Do I have a choice here?

What do YOU think I did?

I had a brief chat with myself because I couldn’t call hub for his opinion since he wasn’t available by cell, so I had to solve this dilemma entirely on my own.

My decision?

I needed BOTH necklaces.(See how I used the word NEED instead of WANT.)

Of course I did, because I DESERVE both of them.

How could anyone choose? They’re both equally amazing, equally beautiful, and now I’m twice as happy!

(No Sophie’s choice this time.)

Here’s the awesome little Chanel.

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By some miracle of the cosmos, another gift arrives this week.

Totally unexpectedly, tugboat man called and said he’s flying home for a week or so between assignments. On Thursday. MY BIRTHDAY.

That’s TOMORROW, which means I’m back on Cinderella duty — jewelry off, yellow rubber gloves on; cleaning, baking, ironing sheets, and hanging welcome home banners.

Don’t think I don’t know I live a charmed life.

I know.

Stop All The Scrunchie Shaming!

MESELFIE2STOP SCRUNCHIE SHAMING!

I’ve had just about enough of this abuse.

I confess.

I’m here to out myself. but I’m still hiding behind dark shades (Chanel, of course).

I’m an addict.

I’ve tried to change.

I really have.

Not a day goes by that I don’t wish and hope and pray that I could be strong enough to resist temptation, but I’m weak.

I NEED it to tame my mane.
I mean, LOOK at me, would ya? My hair has a mind of its own.

When I was growing up in pink toe shoes and tutus and my hair was properly braided and beribboned every morning, how could I possibly foresee what the future would bring?

There was no crystal ball to warn me of the impending appearance of those colorful fabric-wrapped elastic bands that would be my crack.

I lack strength; I’m powerless.

(This is tougher than I thought it would be.)

I won’t — I can’t– hide my addiction one more minute.

The truth is that I wear a SCRUNCHIE every. single. day.

I can’t get through the day without one. Or two.

AND YES, I WEAR IT ON MY WRIST LIKE A BRACELET.

Just to keep it close and handy.

scrunchie1In fact, I have one on my wrist right now, AS I’M TYPING THIS POST.

Don’t even THINK about trying to wrestle it away from me.

Red or blue or purple; I carry extras in my handbags JUST IN CASE I LOSE ONE.

Us girls with SUPER curly and thick hair need a big fattie scrunchie to tame our wild beasty locks.

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You know what?

I’ve had friends who’ve staged spontaneous interventions to help me confront my love for the scrunchie.

I’ve had friends pull them out of my hand and toss them in the trash.

Friends have gifted me all sorts of other hair bands and a variety of products to secure my crazy hair.

I’ve been bribed with lunch and unlimited wine if I don’t show up wearing a scrunchie.

“It ruins your outfit” they say.

“You look like a reject from the nineties”, they say.

Apparently, it’s embarrassing to be seen with a scrunchie-wearer.

I. DON’T. CARE. WHAT. ANYONE. THINKS.

I LOVE my scrunchies.

HAHAHA…the dreaded SIDE SCRUNCHIE!

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No other form of securing my tresses will satisfy me:

  • A scrunchie doesn’t pull my hair
  • A scrunchie doesn’t create unsightly lines
  • A scrunchie doesn’t hurt at night when I have to pull my hair back or braid it so I won’t look like Medusa in the morning
  • And Cosmo says it’s a “must have” for oral sex, so it must be true

I feel so much better having confessed my secret addiction.

It’s a huge load off my chest. I feel light and free.

So deal with it, world.

From this day forward, I’m out, I’m loud, and I’m a PROUD scrunchie-wearer!

My stash.

My stash.

Just be glad it’s not a banana clip. Hee hee.

Lilly Pulitzer at Target: Bringing The Hamptons To The Common Folk

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I confess to showing up bright and early at Tar-zhay for some of the other designer brand marriages like Missoni (not to be confused with Target’s own brand, Mossimo) and TTTT I was less than overjoyed.

I picked up a “Missoni” scarf, but it was a bittersweet moment. While the tag proudly proclaims it to be MISSONI, in really tiny letters you read “for Target”.

missoni for target tag

It’s a feel good/feel bad moment to be considered “less than”, like a second-class citizen, not quite good enough to play with the big kids.

And it’s scratchy. Several negatives.

Do you think it dilutes the brand?

I do.

Isn’t the whole point of “designer” to be elitist and aspirational?

(Don’t worry, I’m being a bit tongue-in-cheek here. Or am I?)

If everyone has semi-equal access, how special can it possibly be?

I own a pretty (real) Missoni top; one of my treasures from a local consignment shop before they changed management and no longer carry any designer brands. The fit is awesome, the fabric is textural, and it’s well constructed –a  high quality item.

Check out the angle of this selfie; it makes me look thinner and narrower. WINNING!

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Not that I don’t love Target in all of its unique brand of Target-y-ness.

Wandering through each and every aisle is a wonderful way to kill a few hours while the tugboat man’s away.

From bleach to bathing suits, Target definitely fulfills the term “one-stop-shopping.”

But there’s something a little off-putting about creating a sub-line for the masses.

For example, I was excited to see what Jason Wu would offer, and was disappointed.

Some of the clothing was poorly sewn and poorly designed with cheap fabrics and I didn’t get a thing.

It was the same with the Neiman Marcus collaboration. Nada.

I don’t mean to sound snobbish; for the most part they were a big let down.

Now there’s Lilly Pulitzer.

Here in SoCal, we may have beaches, sunshine, and palm trees, but we’re a different breed than Miami and the Hamptons.

However, I kind of love the colorful LP designs.

There’s always a place in one’s wardrobe for pink and green and yellow and white eyelet…

I’ve visited the LP store at Fashion Valley in San Diego and it’s not outrageously expensive; it’ll be interesting to observe the price points at Target.

So I’ll be there bright and early on Sunday morning, but when I see the tags say Lilly Pulitzer for Target, I’ll be a little less than happy.

What’s next for Target? A partnership with Chanel? Tags that say Chanel for Target?

OHGODNO.

Coco would turn over in her grave.

LillyPulitzer quote

Imperfectly Perfect

perfectly imperfect“All right, all right, all right!”

Time to shake it off; ENOUGH of the stroll down memory lane.

This empty nest mom needs a little therapy.

And SUH-NAP. *snapping fingers*, just like THAT, back to what makes me tick, what gets me all excited.

And I don’t mean tugboat man…he’s still chugging and tugging toward that remote destination…

I’m talking about RETAIL therapy.

SHOPPING!

I’ve been on a roll lately, finding lots of amazing treasures, can’t wait to share them with you!

Everything from Vitamin C cream, trendy little t-shirts from Ross Dress for Less, and that elusive black pump.

And a sparkly bracelet and seashells, too!

It’s not always about thousand dollar Chanel shoes; I get just as excited for a $6.99 shirt!

For the gym with a sports bra; LOVE the message!

We should always do more of what makes us happy, right?

DoMoreshirtAlso from Ross, Vintage Paris tee with red sparkles. I paired it with white skinny jeans and a cherry red cashmere/silk sweater.

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Minus a weirdly shiny face, this is now one of my fave outfits.ParisVintageselfie

A couple miles down the road, I stopped at Marshall’s and loaded up on my FAVE Vitamin C cream by Dead Sea Minerals from Israel. (Make a note: if you can find it, stock up. It’s GREAT.)VitC

Like a magpie, I was attracted to the shine and sparkle of this adorable little bracelet at White House, Black Market. How could I resist?newbraceletsparkle

Since things were going so well, it was time to drive down the 78 to Nordstrom Rack where there are more shoes than anywhere else I’ve shopped. This pair doesn’t hold the same magic as those Chanels, but with an on sale price point of $49.00, they’ll do for a while until the even more perfect shoe appears.blackshoes

They’re not vegan, which gave me pause —  I obviously had a weak moment — which is why I titled this post, “Imperfectly Perfect”.

It’s a constant struggle to follow a cruelty-free life. Some things are easier than others.

blackshoes2Finally, I stopped at my favorite enchanted garden shop, PlantPlay Nursery, came away with a couple kangaroo plants, a butterfly bush, and how could I NOT bring home this AMAZING seashell wreath?

seashellwreathNow if I only could figure out where to hang it…

 What makes YOU happy today?
How are YOU perfectly imperfect or even imperfectly perfect?

DIY Craft Project: Jazzed Up Animal Print Wedges

What could be better than marrying my love for shoe shopping with a little craftiness?

I found these cute Toms wedges on sale at Nordstrom Rack.tom1

The FIRST thing I did was to remove the Toms label from the heel area of the shoe.

Unless it says Chanel or Dior or Versace or even Kate Spade, I’m not doing any free advertising for anyone.

Plus, to me, TOMS label/logo is ugly. A whole lotta negative valence happening, if you understand those types of dynamics. (I’m aware he does good things with the One for One giving back campaign.)

I studied the shoes for a while, pondering the shape and colors and textures and found them to be a bit lacking in style.

Hmmm, what could I do to jazz ’em up a bit?

Pearls didn’t seem right, nor did seashells, but then I remembered I had a container of wooden beads — natural, organic, and elemental.

Almost everything can be improved upon, right?

PERFECT!Toms2

It was so easy, you MUST try this! My tugboat man thought I bought them this way.

All I did was string three beads and relace the wedges.embellishshoe2Why three beads? Because that’s how many fit the space. Two wasn’t enough, and four was too much. Three beads were just right.
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Love!tomshoes2

Too easy, right? And that simple embellishment totally transformed rather bland shoes into fashion-forward and UNIQUE animal print wedges. They’ll totally rock with skinny jeans and a flowy, gauzy top, don’t you agree?

Toms3See?

PERFECTION!

Right now, I’m going to go crazy with my other lace up shoes and garnish them with jewels, pearls, and beads. I get all obsessed that way…

I’m a happy girl.