the simplicity of one

Before I get started writing about the simplicity of one, can I just say how much I love the above arrangement?  Seriously, since we moved here that area, situation, whatever you want to call it has made me crazy.  For the record, that spot isn't crazy, I am 😁.  Anyway, there is just something about the unfussiness of it that soothes me everytime I walk in the house.

Ok, soooo, the simplicity of one is nothing new.  Like why do we keep 2 potato peelers, or 25 pairs of black shoes or 52 tubes of red lipstick?  I understand the less stuff lying around makes life a lot easier and peaceful.

But since Larry passed away I'm now on a fixed income.  Can't believe I even typed that but it's true.  Ugh, not the fixed income, I just miss him so much😞.  Being on a fixed income means I now have limits on my money.  I quit my job to take care of L and really don't want to go back and re-build my clientele and all that goes with that.  So I've decided to learn to live within the limits of this income and the limits of my home and garden. 

When I wrote out my budget I thought of several different ways I could go about it and settled on the idea of one.  What if I just filled my gas tank once a month?  Could I live within that limit? Turns out I can.  Can I do one load of wash per week?  Why yes I can.  Can I go to the market once a week, that's easy.  What else can I cut down to one?  The list is endless and it has simplified so much for me.  I used to run errands and toss clothes in the wash and ran to the grocery whenever I needed anything.  Now a lot more thought goes into my daily routine and it works for me.  I realize this won't work for everyone but maybe it could be the simplicity of 2 or 3 or what works for you.  The idea is to live purposefully and think before just mindlessly going about your day.  The best part is, with a little thought, I'm making it on my one paycheck a month.

Also, before I go, I want to thank you all again for your love and support.  Would you like more posts about money?  It's one of my favorite subjects but talking about it is generally frowned upon by society.  So let me know what you'd like to see more of here on the blog.  I make a v small amount of money writing it and will even tell you exactly how I make money here if that interests you.  Take care and have a great Sunday.  x

simplifying my pantry

Hi honey.  I recently simplified my pantry because it had become complicated. That's the thing about chemo and hospice, boy does it mess with your appetite.  So if Larry had a craving for anything, I went out and bought it right away.  Most times it was just one bite and nope, not going down.  So the pantry was full of things I'd never eat.  These pictures are not particularly styled nor is the pantry super clean.  I plan to take everything out and give it a good wash and fresh coat of paint.  But who knows when that'll happen, if ever so this is what you get πŸ˜€.

On the left side are my seeds, nuts, oats, beans and flours.  I found those antique pestles at an estate sale for $2 each.  And my French Laundry cookbook is ready for inspiration.  I'll get there one dayπŸ™.

Along the back wall is a tray full of vinegars, some tomatoes and basil from the garden and lemons from Alex & B's garden.  Sparkling water, potatoes and pastas. The broom is from The Laundress.

Now directly to the right of that is this v. difficult side to photograph.  But the top holds my dutch ovens and a waffle maker I never use.  The shelf below holds canned goods.

Below is my little coffee station, my Dualit toaster I recently bought at an estate sale for $10! Each one is hand made in England, steal of the century.  And my Vitamix.


Even more difficult to photograph is the bottom.  I have 4 baskets and each one holds like things to make things simple.  Top left is baking supplies.  Top right is packages of nutritional yeast, granola, risotto.  Bottom left are some paper goods like kids birthday party things.  And some cat food for the stray cats I've been feeding 😺. Bottom right is what I call my emergency basket.  If I lose power or get sick or can't get to the market, I have things to tide me over for a few days.  Soups, canned chili, ramen, granola bars, soymilk.  And that my friends is my simplified pantry. x

me and my garden

Gosh I'm sorry this post got published without me finishing it.  I have no idea how that even happened.  But here I am and I'm ok-ish.  So that tub filled with hydrangeas is a beautiful sight.  I love them so much but they are a struggle to grow in my garden.  Last year due to circumstances I wasn't able to give them the loving care they need and so they didn't make it.  But my darling friend Janet delivered a big plant to me recently.

It's enormous and the blooms were so heavy I had to cut them off and put them in a tub of cool water to revive them. 

Once revived I was able to enjoy them inside and now they are drying in the basement.  The plant is now happily adapting in the garden and so that is my story today.  But really the story here is that when I am drooping with exhaustion sometimes slowing down and a cool bath is all I need.  It's so comforting to me how in tune I am with my garden now.  What it needs, I need.  Sometimes lots of tender loving care and other times I just need to be left alone.  I wake up every morning and can't wait to get outside and see what happened or didn't happen overnight.  I'm most content in my garden.  Can you relate? x

Everlane air ruched blouse and cheeky jean Review

Hi lovelies.  Today I will review the Air Ruched Blouse by Everlane and also their High Rise Cheeky Denim.  I gotta say I love them both.  As in my last post, the Air Ruched Blouse is made of light as air cotton.  I ordered mine in black and sized down from a 4 to a 2.  I knew from the reviews that it is roomy and I didn't want a lot of extra fabric in the hot summer.  Glad I did.  I roll up the sleeves for an even breezier look/feel.  I've already worn it so much and I've only owned it for about 10 days.  That's always the best sign of a good solid purchase for me.  

The Cheeky Jean is similar in that I've worn them non-stop since purchasing them last fall.  I ordered the cropped pair and they look good with my Everlane Day Boots, mules and sandals.  99% of my denim is vintage and can look a little ragged (like me!) but these are my "nice" pair.  I always feel put together in them.  They are comfy as there is a little stretch to them and the denim itself is so nice.  Read the reviews first to get your size just right before ordering! 

If you choose to make a purchase, by using my code I get a $25 credit which costs you nothing!  You can use it to invite your own friends and get $25 credits too.  Plus free shipping today only!

I hope you are enjoying these posts.  I appreciate you listening to me.  It's been good for me to get out of my head (sometimes it's not the best place to be) and thinking about things that really are just fun.  Fashion has always been something I love and I know Larry wanted me to continue being happy.  So I'll do my best.  I have lots of ideas for sharing this summer.  I've been working on the house and garden and want to share with you in case you need a little inspiration.  Take care my loves.  x


easy chino & air relaxed shirt by everlane

Hello ladies and gents.  Recently Everlane asked if I would review a few of their new summer pieces...yes please. I've been shopping at Everlane since their very beginning and love everything they do.  I love basics and no one does them better then Everlane.  It wasn't easy to pick just a few but in today's post I will review my 2 top picks.

I chose the Air Relaxed Shirt and Easy Chino.  They are both so good and such classics.  I gasped when I opened the box because they were better than I thought they'd be.  Let's start with the amazing pants (which I will be ordering in another color asap.)

These are the 100% cotton Easy Chino, where have you been all my life? The elastic band waist is so comfortable and yet somehow manages to be chic at the same time.  I adore everything about them.  The soft fabric, the cut and the deep pockets.  They go with everything in my closet.  They are very roomy across the tummy so I sized down.  I normally wear a 4 so the 2 fit perfecto.  Another great thing about Everlane is that there are tons of honest reviews for each product and people list their height, weight and normal size so it makes ordering much easier.  I highly advise reading them, don't just take my word for it.

Forgive the washed out photos, I'm so out of practice.  This Air Relaxed Shirt in Ivory is as light as air.  I ordered a size 4 which is again my normal size and it fits great.  Not too tight or too big.

It's really hot here in Redlands during the summer but everywhere you go is ice cold air conditioned and freezing.  I need sleeves to roll up or down accordingly.  The fabric is so soft, like a well worn favorite. I've tucked it in jeans and love tying it at the waist.  I realize I am showing a bit of my tummy but frankly it's the only part of my body that is not wrinkled 😸.  I can tie it with super high waist jeans or with a maxi skirt and then I'm all proper again.

They even look good from the back.  I will review the other items I was given and also a few I purchased earlier in the year.

And also coming up even though it is summer, I have an exhaustive post on Everlane cashmere and how they revolutionized my winter dressing.  I want to do it now because they have a lot of sweaters on sale at their Choose What You Pay section on their website.

See you soon honey. x


summery things

I'd love to live in this dress all summer...

When I'm stuck, can't think and need to go somewhere I find almost instant inspiration here at le fashion.

I can't stop watching the video of this fabulous home. esp. the kitchen.

Do you ever wonder if you have enough to retire on?  I did.  This calculator helped me figure it out.

Stay cool honey.  x


hey there

I'm going to give this a shot.  You have to start somewhere right?  I have tried countless times to write, write something Janet, but always stop because I don't know where to start.  My thoughts are still quite jumbled. 

So I thought I'd just start by filling you in on what a little bit of what life is like now.  Larry was such a larger-than-life personality and without him, the house is v quiet, at times unnervingly so πŸ’”.  I've been in the garden as much as possible but always with the  allergies.  I've started with small tasks inside too, cleaning, organizing and painting. They've been good for me because I feel a rhythm returning.

Thank you all for the emails, cards, flowers, plants and gifts.  I'll treasure all the cards and photos of the flowers forever.  Thank you for taking time out of your busy days to continually drop by and check on me.  I'm humbled by it all and it really did help when I most needed it.

So what to do next?  I want to try and continue to blog.  I do not want to use this space to grieve though.  I hope you understand what I mean by that.  I want this to be a place of normalcy for me.  I want to talk gardens, decorating, food and fashion.  I'm gonna give it a shot...πŸ’—


9 days in

Nine days ago Larry lost his fight with cancer.  He died peacefully, which is a blessing beyond words because there was nothing peaceful about his cancer.  From the get-go he was in pain.  Sometimes so severe I didn't think he'd make it.  He truly was the strongest man I've ever known.  We had several near death situations and he always pulled through.  He was so brave.  But this past month was dreadful for him.  The pain and anxiety were unbearable at times.  So I'm grateful that his actual death was peaceful and the pain is gone.

I've learned so much this past 15 months.  So much about living, dying and just surviving.  I'm exhausted but wanted to let you know that all your prayers and well wishes were SO important to us.  Some days I'd just read your comments for strength. 

It has taken me these 9 days to just gather my thoughts and I do believe I want to continue blogging.  It seems so weird for me to go from grief to writing again so we will see how that goes.  But I will tell you some of my calmest moments were being in the garden or just sitting pouring over decorating books.

So thank you again sweet, loving friends.  You all feel like family to me.  xo 

living seasonally

Hello dear dear friends.  Gosh it has been awhile since I wrote.  Every day I make an attempt to write something and wind up closing my computer.  It's such a private time in my life and yet I know from the outpouring of love I've received from you all, you guys do care about what is happening here.   So let's get up-to-date, shall we?

We have good and bad days still.  I wish there were more good ones but that isn't how it is.  Living in reality isn't easy.  Larry is on hospice and as scary as that sounds, it's a blessing.  Hospice nurses are angels sent directly to us to help us through these confusing and sometimes unbearable days.  It is such a relief to have someone to rely on 24/7.  No more cold, sterile hospitals.

One of the things I've been reading about and adopting into my life is living seasonally.  I suppose we all to some extent already do it but I've really immersed myself.  In a nutshell, it is moving, eating and sleeping with the season.  It is a beautiful way to live and I wish I'd started sooner.  But it's never too late.

There is a beauty to having to submit to the rhythm of this season. I am up very early and go to bed very early.  I bundle up each day and go for a walk and truly take in the beauty of the moment. Whether it is the foliage or birdsong, I notice it all.

I am also eating with this season.  Lots of roasted root vegetables in soups and stews simmering on the stove.  Citrus is in abundance in my neighborhood so I've been eating lots of oranges, lemons and grapefruit. 

Enough about me.  I'd love to hear what you are up to.  What season are you are living in and what do your days look like?




Good morning friends.  I wanted to pop in because I know a lot of you have reached out to me and I've been too overwhelmed to talk or answer emails and comments.  I'm just taking things one day at a time.  Larry is home with me and we just take each day as it comes.  I know you all will understand my inability to blog during this time.  Please know that all your prayers and comforting thoughts are incredibly helpful.  Thank you so very much for understanding.  xo

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