What Fashion Is

Standard

The fashion industry today is a conglomerate of boyish clothing with a feminine feel and feminine clothing that is merely more revealing menswear. We have “sexy” designs in drab colors that celebrate only one type of the female form to the exclusion of all others.

Fashion is more than just art. It is all art forms coming together into what ought to be a celebration of the image of God and His Creation. What we put on in the morning should inspire is, it should make us feel strong and capable and beautiful. It should be an extension of who we are, a message to the world without saying a single word.

We need to stop thinking of fashion in the Christian realm as being modest, last decade and unattractive and start thinking of fashion as something in which to take joy and to achieve excellence.

We need to start being artists.

14141976_924754674314313_8142144313548530983_n.jpg

Third Thursday in the Ozarks

Standard

Third Thursday was originally called the Artwalk. It was sponsored by Joplin’s artists and local businesses would display various forms of art in their buildings. It was awesome!

It was so awesome that everyone wanted in on it and people started setting up booths on the sidewalks. It didn’t take long before Joplin’s Main street was blocked off for a few hours each month.

Now it’s a small festival in Joplin with everything from shaved ice and balloons to car showings and art. We love it and it is SO much better without the heavy metal band!

I walked up at the end of the martial arts match, so all I got was the back of the girl’s t-shirt. That brown dress is made entirely of brown paper and the Tobacco Man entirely out of empty tobacco packages.

I bought some Miracle Clay from a friend of mine at the gypsy booth. It’s basically bentonite clay with essential oils added. I LOVE bentonite clay! Get some for yourself! Redmond is a very good brand, or if you live in the Joplin area, get some from the Traveling Gypsies on Third Thursday!

13000104_10206256456110427_7342883683425345449_n

Dinner and Blogging

Standard

I did not buy ice cream at the grocery store.

I decided not to buy ice cream at the grocery store the moment I walked in. Then I opened my Shopkick app and noticed I could 25 kicks for scanning Talenti gelato. I love gelato and this particular brand only puts basic ingredients in theirs…I decided to go ahead and get a container of it.

Food 4 Less was completely out of gelato. I could not find it anywhere in the frozen food aisle. So I decided to get Bunny Tracks instead.

See what happened there?

Luckily, I couldn’t decide which Bunny Tracks so I once again decided NOT to buy ice cream at all. I did however console myself with a bottle of Blackberry Arbor Mist. I’m still not sure if it’s actually healthier but surely it has less sugar in it…

12501841_1594131770901930_914890281_n

 

(Sorry about the grainy pic. Cameras just don’t like me.)

I also splurged on a beautiful Dahlinova Carolina Burgundy. (I say spurged because I already spent all my gardening money and then some, but it WAS only $4…)

A friend called while on my way home to discuss plans for a dinner party and the use of my oven Saturday morning. Naturally, since I am a terrible housekeeper, some actual cleaning is in order. Cleaning put me in the mood to cook and cooking resulted in this lovely, healthy meal of hamburger, potatoes and fresh broccoli. Recipes below:

Hamburger patty-

1/2 lb each of ground beef and turkey
1-2 tbs. coconut oil, melted
1-2 drops each Young Living Oregano, Thyme, Sage, Basil and Marjoram essential oils.
(Mix the essential oils into the coconut oil.)
1 tsp. or so of Penzey’s smoked paprika
I added some Italian seasoning mostly just for fun and color.
I was out of eggs, but an egg or two will help keep the patties from falling apart. One of mine did.

Mix. Form into patties and freeze.

When ready for use, thaw the patties and cook on medium heat.

Potato fries-

3 small potatoes, peeled and sliced into wedges

Place on a greased cookie sheet or glass pan. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, Penzey’s smoked paprika or spices of your choice. Spray with cooking spray. Roast at 400 for 20-30 minutes.

Broccoli-

Cut broccoli florets into bite-sized pieces. Saute with a tbs. of coconut oil on medium-high heat just until cooked through and slightly crunchy. Season with salt.

Feel free to cover the potatoes and meat with ketchup. I did.

12677548_1599109190410412_1594776641_n

Taking Back Your Life

Standard

Hey girls, this is a post just for you from someone who has been there before.

It’s time to take back your life. It is time to kick yourself into gear and say enough is enough.

Maybe you were raised like I was. When I was young, my parents taught me to think for myself, always put God first even if meant disagreeing with them. They weren’t perfect, but they tried and in the end they succeeded at producing a woman who can stand on her own two feet. (Well…or crawl at least.)

Maybe you were raised from the beginning with the kind of thinking that I picked up in my teen years. The thinking that had me convinced that my purpose in life was to get married, make babies and promote my husband’s vision with unquestioning loyalty. The thinking that made me honestly think that it was ok to only have the basics down like the death, burial and resurrection but leave any belief that I was unsure on until later when I found out what my husband thought.

I know a lot of young women in Patriocentric families were taught to follow first their father and later their husband. To let him do most of the thinking and defer to him when in doubt. Their parents didn’t mean to raise a girl who can only pretend to think for herself, but that is what so many have done without realizing it.

But ladies, it’s time to stand up. It is time to grow up and grow past all of that.

You are a powerful individual. You belong to Yahweh and He has made you His masterpiece. You are no less intelligent, no less important that any man on this earth and it has nothing to do with your anatomy. You are uniquely gifted in many different ways and using those gifts does not necessarily revolve around raising children and making a home. It might have nothing to do with those things and it is every bit as right and good as holding a child in your arms.

God told the man to protect the woman as the weaker vessel and a righteous man will do just that whether the woman is his wife, his sister or a stranger on the street. You’ve probably been taught that there are also predators out there who want to rape you, use you and cast you aside and that is very true. But what is harder to teach and harder to spot is the men in the middle.

They don’t know that they are predators. They may open doors for you, they may be perfect and smart and funny and make you feel safe and they are completely sincere in all of it. But you must walk carefully. If a man routinely makes decisions about his life based on how he feels, what his flesh wants, turn around and run.

I don’t mean that he has to be perfect, but if you are not equipped to disagree with him, if you find yourself being easily convinced when he tells you what he believes, you…get…out.

It will hurt far less a few months into a relationship than it will a few years into a marriage. You are strong enough and even if it looks hopeless and feels like you’re ripping your heart out of your chest, you must not allow yourself to be lead down that path.

Become a woman, know that you can stand on your own two feet, alone with only your God to guide you and then see where you are and where you want to go.

pexels-photo.jpeg

P.S. I cannot recommend this book enough. Buy a copy. Read it. It will change your life.

2:43 AM

Standard

It’s 2:43 AM on a Saturday night. Luckily I don’t have to be anywhere tomorrow so it’s ok to let my creative juices ebb and flow at will. No need to force myself into slumber. I have all the time in the world.

I adore the quiet, the stillness, the cool darkness when the rest of the world sleeps…except for those crazies who get up and go drive around town to who knows where at 2:00 or show up at the gym shouting to their friend across the room and chatting with the girl in the massage chair who obviously just came to relax in silence.

I think part of my nocturnal tendencies are a hormonal imbalance and adrenal issues, part could be that I have trained myself since childhood to fight sleep…I’ve always had so many things to think about and never enough waking hours to engage in all that thinking. Therein lies the crux of it all. I just love being awake at night.

Someday I’ll be a famous blogger and I’ll sleep from 1:00 in the afternoon until 10:00 in the evening. It is going to be fabulous!

(It’s also entirely possible that I will eventually repair my circadian rhythm with a nice, long camping trip free of electronics and responsibilities…but we won’t think about that tonight.)

IMG_4957

The Lumpy Blue Sweater

Standard

You know how sometimes you can know something as in you know the words, but you don’t really know it?

devil-wears-prada-sweater I knew that fashion was art in a sort of off-hand sort of way, but I didn’t really know until that night when I watch The Devil Wears Prada (starring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway.) Ironic that a film about a woman who in the end (spoilers!) turns her back on the fashion world would be so instrumental in showing me what fashion truly is. Yet, not that ironic when you think about how the message was not that fashion was either bad or good but simply that one must not lose oneself in the pursuit of it.

Before I get too sappy, let’s get to the point….

That lumpy blue sweater that Andrea wears her first day on the job. The one she wishes would swallow her up during Miranda’s frighteningly soft lecture (as only Meryl Streep can do) which I am including below:

“This….stuff? Oh. Okay. I see. You think this has nothing to do with you. You go to your closet and you select out, oh I don’t know that lumpy blue sweater, for instance, because you’re trying to tell the world that you take yourself too seriously to care about you put on your back. But what you don’t know is that that sweater is not just blue, it’s not turquoise, it’s not lapis, it’s actually cerulean. You’re also blindly unaware of the fact that in 2002, Oscar de la Renta did a collection of cerulean gowns. And then I think it was Yves St Laurent, wasn’t it, who showed cerulean military jackets? And then cerulean quickly showed up in the collections of eight different designers. Then it filtered down through the department stores and then trickled on down into some tragic “casual corner” where you, no doubt, fished it out of some clearance bin. However, that blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs and so it’s sort of comical how you think that you’ve made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you’re wearing the sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room…from a pile of “stuff.”

eDdtb2F5MTI=_o_the-devil-wears-prada-cerulean-sweaterAs she said those words and I got a glimpse into the detail and the thought and the pride in the workmanship that goes into every garment that I have ever put on myself, (including a lumpy sweater VERY much like the one in question only I think the one I wore back in the day was baby girl pink) it suddenly hit me, that knowledge that I had but just didn’t get, the knowledge that fashion is art. It is every bit as much art as Van Gogh’s water colors or Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa or the 3d chalk drawings that I’ve often wished I possessed the skill to create.

If fashion is art, is it not the only art medium that every person in the world participates in almost every single day of their lives? Don’t we get up in the morning and “paint” a masterpiece for the world to see? We’ve all heard that what a person wears is a statement about themselves and it certainly is, but do we really think about what each article means to us as we put it on ourselves? If instead of dressing in what randomly catches our fancy, what if we thought, “I am painting a masterpiece, what do I want to communicate and what should I wear to that end?”

Growing up in the conservative Christian community, modesty was always a big deal. My parents tried to teach me to balance attractiveness with modesty. Other parents taught their daughters to “dress in such a way as to frame your face” which unfortunately was often translated into shapeless floral prints and blouses with huge collars. I remember being surprised one day as I saw a friend walking toward me from about a block away and I thought, “Who is that guy?” For just a split second, her loose blouse, skirt and pulled back hair made her look LESS feminine than something more figure flattering would have done.

I remember the frustration that my sisters and I experienced, (myself especially being less of a seamstress than they were) as we would scour the internet for modest clothing. On the one hand we had your typical trends with low-cut tops, short skirts, tight jeans, and the list goes on but on the other hand we had the Christians in the fashion world putting out the above-mentioned shapeless, drab pieces. I’ve always asked myself, why is it that those who claim to serve a God who so clearly places great importance on beauty would design such beauty-less things? Is it any wonder that the world looks at us and laughs? We can’t even utilize the talents God gave us to make a dress that is both lovely AND modest!

We will be laughed at until the end of the world, but perhaps could we make it a priority to be laughed at because we do serve Yahweh rather than because we claim to and yet miss the mark on something so simple as the art of dressing ourselves?

Anne Hathaway stars as Andy Sachs, a recent college graduate whose first job is as an assistant to an impossibly demanding boss. PHOTOGRAPHS TO BE USED SOLELY FOR ADVERTISING, PROMOTION, PUBLICITY OR REVIEWS OF THIS SPECIFIC MOTION PICTURE AND TO REMAIN THE PROPERTY OF THE STUDIO. NOT FOR SALE OR REDISTRIBUTION.