Thursday, May 27, 2010

Fashion + Pre-teen Years = Disaster

Before I delve into my fashion mistakes, I just want to take a moment to say that I had the pleasure of reading an advanced copy of NOT READY FOR MOM JEANS, and I’m so excited that it’s finally out so that every one else can enjoy it!! It is a must read this summer – funny and overwhelmingly relatable for new moms and non-new moms alike. In the book, Clare tackles the dilemma that all new moms are faced with – can a woman still work and be a mom, and how can she be good at both? Add to that a cast of hysterical yet exceedingly real friends and family, and I found myself instantly absorbed in Clare’s life. Once I picked it up, I could not put it down and read the whole thing in almost one sitting!

So now to my fashion mistakes. Oh, there were too many to recount here. Remember my post a few weeks ago about my fabulous mom – well one of the fabulous things about her was that she always told me to make my own decisions. From a very early age, she wanted me to take responsibility for my actions. Apparently, this included my clothing choices. I’ve looked at many a picture from my childhood days and asked my mom what she was thinking to dress me that way. Her response is always the same, that it was my decision what I wanted to wear. Ahem.

Of course, I think my worst fashion mistakes were in my middle school years. I remember a fascination with tie-dye in sixth grade – I had this matching tie-dye pants/shirt set, and then a bright pink tie-dye shirt that I used to wear tucked into my tight rolled jeans (Okay, this last mistake was not entirely my fault, as tight rolling jeans used to be the only cool way to wear them, and sadly, in sixth grade, I was a fashion follower.)

However, if we’re talking about my worst fashion mistake ever, I’d have to say it was this. In seventh grade my best friend and I decided we should wear matching outfits to our school dance. Stop right there, you say? No, it gets better. The outfits we chose were these black and hot pink shirt dresses with big obnoxious silver zippers up the front, and we wore these over black leggings, of course. And yet, we got the reaction we hoped for when our collective crush took a double take when he saw us at the dance and called us “twins.” At the time we thought this was The. Best. Outfit. Ever.

Looking back I can laugh, because who hasn’t had a fashion mistake in their early pre-teen years? Isn’t that a rite of passage? So what was your worst pre-teen fashion faux pax?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

My Fashion Faux Pas

Dear Maureen (a.k.a. former debut author),

Can you believe you have another book under your belt? You're only twenty-something and have two books published already. I'm so thrilled and happy for you (please overlook my bad case of the green-eyed monster) and I'm hoping you are taking this week to relish in all of your glory!

NOT READY FOR MOM JEANS is a fab title! And the cover - that's mighty wonderful, too! In case some of our NG Followers don't know, I thought it would be great to mention again that we share the same wonderful agent AND the same wonderful editor at Thomas Dunne Books. Does that makes us cousins? Three times removed maybe?

I would never call myself a "fashionista" but if truth be told, upon first glance at my closet, one might think that I consider myself one. It's stuffed, packed and overflowing with more clothes than I know what to do with. My biggest fashion mistake is that I buy erroneous pieces for my wardrobe instead of thinking "entire outfit." I've got more clothes that have only been worn once and the reason is: I have nothing to go with them. EBAY needs to become my best friend.

On to my worst fashion faux pas. . . If I think back to the most hideous thing I've ever worn I suppose it would have to be back in college when jumpsuits were all the rage. I sported a navy blue number with a wide white metal zipper that adorned the front and had a big white ring at the top - just under my chin. Hot Sexy Mama is all I'll say. And the worst part of the faux pas . . . I wore it to a Fraternity Pledge Swap. If that doesn't make you cringe, I don't know what will.

CONGRATULATIONS to you, dear Maureen! Picture me right now sending you a cyber champagne toast. Wish I could be in Chicago to help you celebrate in person!



Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Happy Release Day to Me!

It feels very surreal to be celebrating the publication of Not Ready for Mom Jeans. I keep thinking the release is next month, or next year, or somewhere far, far away. As of today, I'm no longer a "debut" author, which is both thrilling and unbelievable. My dream was always to have a book out--just one--and now I officially have two. Pardon me while I say Whoa. (Bonus points if you were just reminded of Joey Lawrence on Blossom.)

In honor of the release of Mom Jeans, I chose the topic of fashion mistakes. My main character, Clare, is determined to stay somewhat hip and with-it, despite now having a baby. She has a serious case of minivanitis and refuses to trade in her j

For all those wondering, let me define what "Mom Jeans" actually are for you. Tyra banks actually had a very helpful diagram on her show recently. Mom Jeans generally have a very long zipper, well above the belly button, are pleated in the front and taper down toward the ankles, giving the wearer an ice-cream cone look. Very often, they are also really, really light colored, further adding to the unattractiveness.

Saturday Night Live did a hilarious spoof of Mom Jeans here:

While I can't admit to actually wearing Mom Jeans, there have been plenty of cringe-worth fashion mistakes in my time. I grew up in the late eighties/early nineties, and thus was best friends with my crimping iron. I even had the one that would crimp (read: burn) designs into your hair like a heart or a star. My mother never let me leave the house like that, but Still.

My favorite outfit when I was about twelve was an orange and black splatter paint shirt coupled with a poufy nylon bright orange skirt with black bike shorts underneath. I mean, Seriously. I also had acid-washed jeans with fluorescent puffy splatter paint all over it--that glowed in the dark. Again, I say: Seriously?!

And let's not forget the fashion trends of the mid-nineties--namely, a dark green crushed velvet babydoll dress paired with a black velvet choker and chunky black shoes. In 1995, I was extremely fashionable. Yet I still want to hide the pictures.

So let's hear it folks! What fashion mistakes will you admit to?

Monday, May 24, 2010

Congratulations, Maureen!

I am so excited to celebrate the release of Maureen's second book, NOT READY FOR MOM JEANS! I haven't received my copy yet, but it will go to the top of my TBR pile the second it arrives. From the little I know about this story, I'm pretty sure it will also go to the top of my favorite reads. See, the heroine in the book (Clare) is a new mom, her mom is battling breast cancer, and she has a real life that needs some attention.

A lot like my life. No, I'm not a new mom NOW. And, thankfully, my mother has won her battle with breast cancer, but the specifics aren't what I'm talking about. It's the overall journey I'm referring to. One filled with joy and sadness and fear. Moments of life that we can all relate to. And, I'm sure, there will be plenty of Maureen's wonderful humor wrapped into the story. I'm expecting I'll laugh out loud more than once.

So yep, can't wait to get it, and I'm bursting with excitement for Maureen. Huge, huge congrats, Maureen!

Now, from what I can tell, I'm supposed to write a post about fashion mistakes. But I'm not really sure I can do that. Mostly because I don't pay a lot of attention to fashion. Heck, I'm a stay-at-home writer. My fashion choices tend to be what's comfortable. Pajama bottoms and a T-shirt? Yep! Baggy sweatshirts and shorts? Yep! If it's clean and comfortable, I'm going to wear it while I write.

Even when I actually don real clothes to go out in the real world, I find I'm not that picky. As long as what I'm wearing is free of stains and not missing any buttons, I'm pretty happy. I'm also one of those women who can have her hair and makeup done in less time than it takes my husband to prepare himself to walk out the door.

Sad, huh?

Yeah, I know. But it's the way it is. So I don't really have a specific story about a fashion mistake. I'm sure I've made them. I just don't know enough to know when I made them or the particulars. It's probably best that I don't know, to be honest.

I find fashion interesting. I love watching the red carpet shows and checking out what all the celebrities are wearing. But that's about as far as it goes with me.

Do you have any fashion mistakes you'd like to share? And please, join me in congratulating Maureen for her release!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

"You were banished because you were clumsy?"

Me and Jar Jar Binks. We have that in common. (That is all we have in common. I did not ruin a movie franchise with my ridiculous antics, thank you very much!)

And maybe I wasn't exactly banished, but I was definitely clumsy.

It's probably the thing about me growing up that drove my mom nuts the most. I mean aside from my lack of punctuality (er... see last week's post and, er... the timing of this week's post!)

You see... as a small child, I was fond of running into things with my face. It's like I'd get up to speed and then couldn't figure out how to stop, so I'd just point my mug in the direction of the nearest hard/pointy/sharp/injurious surface and cease forward momentum thusly.

For example, I distinctly remember the day my mother was baking snickerdoodles (I also didn't give silly names to cookies - that's just what they're called, all right?) and I'd endured an afternoon of delicious chocolatey smells wafting down from the kitchen. When, finally, she called down that they were ready, I went tearing upstairs, misjudged the door frame and door opening by several significant inches and split my forehead open on the corner of the wall. This was in the days before cell phones: my dad came home from work to an empty house, mouthwatering aromas, and random blood-spatters as my mom had taken my brother to the neighbors and driven me to emergency to get my face sewn shut.

Then there was the time I split my eyebrow open bouncing on my bed - having flown off wildly after a rogue bounce and finding it necessary to impede my flight by way of the dresser.

Oh yeah... and then there was the time I split my lip open on the fireplace hearth. I don't even remember what my reasoning was that time. Probably just kids havin' fun...

All of these incidences required various degrees of needle-work to make right. So by the time I slipped on a patch of ice in the school playground and broke my arm in the second grade, my adorable visage was a road map of scars both fresh and fading. Not surprising then that the doc who was plastering my skinny limb into a cast didn't believe me when I said I'd "fallen down". Sure you did, kid. Ma'am, we'd like to talk to Lesley alone, for a moment, please...

Honestly, I think the poor woman thought they were going to call a social worker on her! But then I probably did something like fall off the examining table, lending credence to the "No really - she's just unnaturally clumsy!" theory.

They let me go home and I'm sure my mother was relieved at that. But yeah - I'm pretty sure that it also drove her fairly nuts.