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Flowers & Shoes For Lottie

Two-year-old Lottie has an emerging clothing style:

-She doesn’t like dresses and is dubious about skirts. I only insist that she wear one of the two on Sundays, and she the only thing she absolutely refuses to wear is a grey, floofy, all-made-of-mesh-and-tulle-and-ruffles skirt. You know, the one that other girls insist on wearing every day, even when it’s torn and dirty. If I manage to get it on her while she screams, she shouts, “No like it!” and immediately pulls it off.

I keep it in her drawer for Sundays when she refuses to pick something and doesn’t want to wear anything to church. If I put The Floofy One on her, she’ll pick something after she yanks it off.

-Lottie is beginning to like what society deems as “girl” colors nowadays, but she’s still working on identifying colors as a whole. Yellow and orange are both “orange”. Pink and purple are both “pink”, but purple and blue are also both “blue”. Knowing this, I favor purple.

-When she chooses everyday clothes, she goes for blue and turquoise and teal when offered cool and warm colors. She doesn’t like play skirts or jumpers or jean skirts. She associates all jeans with Toby, since many of his pants are jeans nowadays, and she doesn’t want to dress like Toby. Just straight shorts and t-shirts for Lottie.

Lottie picked a pair of pink socks this morning on impulse, but then changed her mind and went with one black and one purple instead. Sometimes, she doesn’t want to pick at all. I’ll gladly pick for her. I still have to fight her to put on clothes; it doesn’t matter if she picks them or not. Telling her that it’s cute as we put it on her sometimes helps; then, she’ll look at herself in the mirror, nod once in satisfaction and say, “Cute”, and turn away.

-She doesn’t love dresses or skirts,  but she does love shoes. She loves to pick out my shoes, she loves wearing different pairs of shoes per day, and she’ll gladly put on shoes when she fights me about putting on anything else. Sometimes, she’ll wear a suede boot on one foot and a rainboot on the other, or a red flat and a plaid flat. I just laugh.

-Lottie is currently not fond of doing hair. We have three headbands and hair ribbons and hair ties for pigtails and hair bows on clips, but she’s not interested. She lays on her face in the middle of the hallway every morning to have her hair brushed.

-But she loves picking flowers. On a walk through the neighborhood to the bus stop, she’ll make a well-rounded bouquet of dandelions. She’ll hand me extras; on any walk around the block, our hands are all filled with flowers. And we juggle holding hands and holding flowers and holding toys like garbage trucks and wooden balls.

On any given day, you can follow our path by the flowers strewn along it. I favor flowers with long stems, but she hasn’t figured that out yet. When she hands me flowers that have no stem, I toss them beside me or behind me. Flowers are always in my hair, and the wilted ones end up on varied surfaces in our house and on shelves in stores.


Which reminds me of this quote.


Shoes, Sandals, Slippers–Honestly Describe Your Collection

“A girl’s shoe collection gives some description of who she is.”

I’m quoting myself. Five years ago, I made an inventory of all the shoes I owned. And because it came to mind and this list is fun to look back on, I think I’ll do it again. Ready?

-Black but multi-colored polka-dot galoshes. The dots are every color but pink, which pleases me. And there’s a buckle at the top of the boots, which lets me adjust the wideness of the opening. I like the look of the little detail, and the fact that it’s functional is even cooler.

-Orange suede knee-high boots with no heel. They served me well for tromping in the snow and now have a cardboard insert inside to try to prolong their life. My shoes lately wear down the heel on one side so that I end up stepping on the side of my shoe and wearing that away. I love these because of the brown, fuzzy line that goes up the side; it accentuates the curve of my leg, even though the boots are flat.

-Navy blue pointed dress flats. These were meant to replace the black patent leather ballet flats I had and the metallic pewter flats with a criss-cross on the top; both of these pairs wore out. It seems these flats are too dressy to be used as everyday flats. They clack when I walk, and I still haven’t worn them in completely. They’re still cool; they have a black lacing on the tops that remind me of the yellow roping on military dress jackets.

-Those hiking boots that were in the last collection as well. They’ve served me well, which is surprising for product from Mart of Wal.

-Clear jellies. Yes, like the many pairs of jellies I loved as a kid, only in my size. And yes, they’re as awesome as they were then, and still just as hard to wear in.

-Blue tennis shoes. I wore these everyday when working for the dollar store, but I bought them to replace another pair of tennis shoes I once had. They’re slim sneakers, with a sole that is very narrow in the center of the shoe so that it looks like the white stripes wrap all the way around my foot. They don’t protect ankles and are not thick anywhere. The last thing I want is to be active but clunky. Other than that, pretty nondescript. Blue, white laces, ho hum.

-Navy strappy sandals. These are really hard to describe; they make two sets of Xs across my foot and connect with a buckle. I’d love to replace them with some silver gladiator sandals, but don’t really want to go through the effort of finding something that specific. The bottoms are starting to peel away to expose the thin layer of foam underneath. These probably won’t last much longer.

-Black witch boots, ankle-length. The shoelaces clack against the shoe louder than the heel itself; this amuses me.

-Mid-thigh chunky heeled boots. Black, vinyl. You know, the classic that every girl has had or should have? Mine haven’t worn out yet.

-Ukraine slippers: My dad bought these for me on a business trip. They are mainly a black suede with blue faux fur on the opening. They’re pointed, fur lined, with wooden baubles on the laces. They have a cool burnt sienna bric-a-brac along the bottom edge, and no solid soles. I’ve switched to wearing them purely indoors because I love them so.

-:Low-heeled ankle boots. These are a version of the black high-heeled boots I own. Same heel, same material, but the brown is almost burgandy and the height is much more manageable. These are nice for everyday wear on days where it rains enough to cause puddles, but when I want something dressier than galoshes.

–Blue sparkle Converses. I’ve found I like wearing these with a pair of thigh-high grey socks, so the edges of the Converses show off my ankles. I like this effect, so I think I’ll get a pair of saddle shoes to replace the Cons–they’re splitting at the line where the cloth meets the rubber lip of the sole, as is inevitable. The inner side of the left shoe has completely split apart, as have both heels. The saddle shoes thing is ironic because, as a kid, my mom was always trying to persuade me to buy a pair of saddle shoes; I often considered them, but always ended up picking something else.

–Wrap-up-the-leg sandal flats. The sandal itself goes through the big gap in the toes, and the entire wrap-around-the-foot part is black cloth. There are two cloth straps that can wrapped around in several different ways. They look like a simplified version of Sseko sandals, which I drool over.

-Red, slip into slippers with a really basic sole. In fact, these are just overall really basic, so I don’t feel afraid to use them for camping and outside activities, like schleping around on our porch with a curious little boy.

-Brown, almost red leather shoes with a brass buckle on the front. I’ve fallen in love with these lately. They’re slightly pointed and slender, but they still look like men’s shoes. The buckle and the flap over the top makes them look like something a leprechaun would wear, which is just fine with me. I wear them to church with dresses and everywhere else.

-And lastly, teal, white and brown flats for $2 at a retail store. The colors are roped together and twisted in the front. I’m sure you’ve seen these flats before, but I’ve gotten so many compliments on these that the bargain story is just more and more fun to tell.

There’s quite a comparison between five years ago and now. I have more shoes because I have more room to keep them; the three pairs of boots live in a cupboard, and the shoes that don’t stay in my closet-hanging organizer are kept on top of Just’In’s shoe cubby–and not strewn all over the apartment wherever I kick them off.

Still, as you can tell from these notes, there are quite a few worn pairs and some that will soon be replaced. Maybe a conscious shoe-culling mindset is in order.

Annie Oakley: That Scarf, Those Shoes, That Blouse

I love Annie Oakley’s style. This isn’t another look-alike post. Instead, think more along the analysis that a sartorialist would give.

No, Don't Look At The Fringe--Instead, That Gorgeous Scarf.

I first came upon this opinion after watching PBS. I had only a vague knowledge of the name because it’s often mentioned when girls dress up in cowboy getup. Someone mentioned to me once that I looked like her, so I intentionally watched a biography to see if there was any truth to it. After watching one slow span after another of photos, I began to realize something: Annie had a radical dressing style.

The biography soon gave commentary on that subject. She was a woman of the Victorian Era, and women of that era wore long skirts and their hair up. Yet Annie chose not to. Her hair was always down and her skirts were to her calves. Sometimes she wore the shooting medals she’d won, sometimes she wore a cowboy hat, and sometimes, she wore riding gloves.

I don’t like the look of cowboy hats or brown, fringed dresses. I don’t like fringed gloves or that any girl who’s wearing anything cowboy-ish is called Annie Oakley. But I like that Annie is remembered for the image she carefully created; she skipped on stage, pouted when she pretended to miss, and stamped her foot like the little girl her dresses implied. And yet she wore corsets.

Annie Looking Backwards At Her Target

She was clearly a woman of her own very conscious invention, even though she had to work within the social mores of her time. I’m the same way–I don’t have the time or energy to completely invent my own clothing, so I have to stay with what I can find in stores. Annie embroidered and embellished her own costumes, but she wasn’t a fashion designer. She was a girl with talent.

I Just Have One Question: What Are Those Shoes Called & Where Can I Get Some?

And For Some Reason I Feel Like Describing My Shoe Collection

I seem to have a shoe fetish lately. I ordered a pair of wrap-up-the-leg flat sandals from Victoria’s Secret’s clearance catalog that I’ve had my eye on for a year and a half.

I bought three pairs of shoes at various thrift stores today. I’ve been wanting to hit the thrift stores for quite some time, and I finally took the day to do so today. I feel so very proud of myself because I made four bus transfers in one trip to two stores, almost three had I not restrained myself not to pull the “Get Off” Rope as we passed it. It was a good reminder of the mindset one must have while thrift-store shopping: You can’t walk into the store wanting something specific.

I had the headache-and-hunger that accompany the hate for shopping until the Rule of Thrift-Store Shopping was remembered. I walked into the first store looking for specific-looking short-sleeved blouses and maybe a vest. After I was done, along with one vest, a really cool sweater and another long-sleeved button-up, I bought:

-a pair of “witch shoes”, as dear hayley_beth24 puts it quite aptly,
-a pair of brown, worn-in, leather shoes that look like something my Grandpa Bob would wear,
-and a pointed, woven, reddish-brown pair of flats that are just fun.

Added to the stuff already in the closet:

-my Lime-Green loafers that are currently my everyday pair,
-my blue sparkly Converses,
-my white little-girl sandals,
-my knee-high classic-black boots,
-my Ukrainian slippers I used to wear to HS so now the bottoms have horrible holes in them (Dad bought them in Ukraine as a gift while on a business trip),
-a $2 wooden pair of flip-flops from Old Navy with cool buckles on the tops,
-those black strappy heels I got as a hand-me-down from an older girl at church,
-the dark-blue criss-cross sandals that need another buckle-hole in them because they’re stretching,
-a pair of boat shoes with zigzags drawn onto the sides of one shoe,
-a pair of black, used-to-be-suede ankle-high boots with this cool wrinkly thing built in that leak when I use them in snow or rain because they’re so worn,
-normal, Wal-Mart hiking boots,
-and these white tennis shoes I bought in the sixth grade (or whenever our first year of PE was that we had to have uniforms) that have since been stained green from mowing wet grass and that still fit.

And the only reason I can list these is because I’ve got this shoe organizer thing that hangs from the bar in the closet. I keep my shoes down to a minimum by making sure they all fit in the shoe rack. Except for the hiking boots, but only because we’re using one as a door stopper. The wind thinks our bedroom door is a toy.

Yeah, I don’t know why I list all the shoes I own. Partly for reference (because it’s fun to look back), and partly because I think a girl’s shoe collection gives some description of who she is. And it’s a fun writing exercise.