Saturday, December 16, 2017

Attitude is Everything

I found this yesterday on Susan Street's blog "Susan After 60".  Susan's blog is one of the blogs I check every day and she does post several time a week.  She is a beautiful person inside and out with a positive attitude.  Do read Susan's post on attitude - Her life's example is touching.     

Susan and I met a year or so ago and I can tell you that in person, she is the same intelligent, friendly and beautiful woman you see on the blog. I pride myself in knowing Susan. 

When we are out, our single most important wardrobe item is our attitude. Being positive is contagious and is always displayed with a smile. 

Thank you Susan for this beautiful post and your timely advice.     

Susan and I - October '16

Friday, December 15, 2017

Friend's Friday - Another Evening In Palm Beach

Stefanie and Rhonda

I do not have to go into to many details and just need to say that Thursday is a wonderful open evening at Palm Beach Colony's Polo Lounge. Last evening was many of the typical crowd with the exception of Stefanie.   

Stefanie was my guest for the evening. This was one of her first outing and looking beautiful, she fit in perfectly. There is always a glow that sets in when one is comfortable in their skin. Stefanie - a natural.  

After the Colony we went to dinner at the Raindancer Restaurant and we were treated like royalty.  

A wonderful escape evening with a new local friend.  Stefanie, let's do it again.


Thursday, December 14, 2017

Cute Sneakers

I found these cute stripe sneakers on sale at Talbots.  I think they will go with several of my causal outfits and put together this layout to check it out.  The jeans shirt I have in several variations as well the jeans. One of my favorite jeans are the white bib jeans from Ralph Lauren from several years ago, shown above. They have a great nautical look and feminine cut - (fit nice in the back). 

The Love Print T-shirt just arrived from Venus and will go great with any of the shorts I have or light wash denim jeans. Graphic t-shirts are typically feminine especially when cut with a scoop or boat neck.  This one is more of a scoop neck than the photo shows.  

I read at the blog Fabulous-After-40 a great comment on scoop neck tops. "The scoop neckline on (a) top is so flattering. It elongates the neck in the way a simple crew neckline would not."  Good suggestion.        

So I believe that the stripe sneakers will make be great addition to many of my casual looks. A great find this morning. Enjoy.


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

British Theater – “Everybody’s Talking About Jamie”

John McCrea

New York Times - Ben Brantley - BRANTLEY IN BRITAIN NOV. 22, 2017

John McCrea, as the boy who wants nothing more than to wear a dress to his school prom, (I can relate to that) in “Everybody’s Talking About Jamie.” Photo credit Johan Persson        

Most of the characters in “Follies” no longer know who they are, if they ever really did. So it was kind of comforting, two days later, to come across a 16-year-old boy who seemed to be precociously sure of his identity.

That’s the title character of “Everybody’s Talking About Jamie,” first staged at the Crucible Theater in Sheffield. Based on a 2011 television documentary, this determinedly inspirational show, which opened at the Apollo Theater in London on Wednesday night, arrives with perfect timing.

Just two weeks earlier, the Church of England issued a statement saying that children should be allowed to experiment with “the many cloaks of identity,” especially involving gender, “without expectation or comment.” Such advice has already been fully embraced by the leading lad (the pale and long-stemmed John McCrea) of “Jamie,” written by Dan Gillespie Sells and Tom MacRae and directed by Jonathan Butterell.

Jamie has always known that he was destined to be a drag queen, a goal in which he has been encouraged by his self-sacrificing, blue-collar mother, Margaret (Josie Walker, who inevitably sings a number of bottomless love called “He’s My Boy”). Yes, there are obstacles.

Jamie’s absentee father (Ken Christiansen) is a disapproving macho brute. And there is a classroom bully (Luke Baker), who tries to puncture Jamie’s pastel dreams. But all the other students — including Jamie’s best friend, the hijab-wearing Pritti (a very good Lucie Shorthouse) — seem thoroughly schooled in the creeds of diversity and inclusivity.

They really want him to be able to wear a dress to his school prom, despite objections from a hidebound teacher and a few parents. Along the way, Jamie sings of his plight in numbers both snappy and sappy, annotated with improbably extended legs and graceful vogueing.

And I don’t think it’s a spoiler to reveal that he makes it to the prom, looking like a virgin in a sweet white dress. (His sex life, by the way, is never discussed.) Having seen “Follies” a few nights earlier, though, I couldn’t help wondering how Jamie might regard his glamorously girlish self a few decades down the line. Enjoy it while you can, kid.


Are there any readers in London that want to give us a review - Sounds like a great "Escape" night.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

T'is The Season - Holiday Party (Part 2)

The Toys
I attended my auto club Holiday Party luncheon the past Sunday. Before going I made a stop at Toys-R-Us to pick up an item for the Toys-for-Tots drive. I was so over dressed, however I guess the somewhat empty Sunday morning store was used to customers picking up a last minute toy for an event.  

My outfit choice completely changed on the morning of the party. It was cool (60 degrees) and an off-the-shoulder top was not going to work. Plus there are limited opportunities in South Florida for us to pretend winter, so why miss a change to wear something with a little winter flair. The skirt would have been fine but not the top. My choice was a tan scoop neck sweater (Boston Proper) with a matching ancient Spiegel leather skirt.  

I have a friend that I see at my Palm Beach Business Group meetings and he has a vintage 500 SEL AMG Mercedes (European edition). He has been trying to sell it, so I invited him along for the party. The right crowd and one person there was very interested. Scott is an entrepreneur and always has something interesting going. I have been helping with his latest Jet Ski Lacrosse project.      

Scott and I   
Being a new member (joined in October) I was called on to introduce myself again to the group of about 100. With microphone in hand, I accomplished this with feminine grace in my opinion. I also gave Scott an opportunity to mention his vintage MB and after the lunch and raffle his car was quite the hit. "What am I - chopped liver?"  Several came by for a look and one took a test drive - The car. 

I was seated by a lovely lady and we talked grandchildren, trips and the coming holidays. Her husband is a retired CPA and we three discussed the years previous club events. Some of the car show events are likely to repeat this year and she told me, "I must attend". I will.  

I was very impressed with the groups generosity for the Toys-for-Tots drive and after approached the club president to volunteered to help with this year's upcoming efforts and outings. Why not!

Monday, December 11, 2017

How Low Will The GOP Go?

I have voted Republican more times than I have voted Democratic. Currently I am a registered Independent seeking to not align myself with either self serving party. I vote issues as I believe most thinking person do. If someone/something is a bad candidate or bad policy, irrespective the party affiliation, I do not offer my support or vote. I firmly believe that the majority of Americas are in the middle and only wants what is best or all.  Leadership should always direct us to higher ground. 

I voted for Obama both times and have never been more proud to be an American when he was elected. Not because he was a Democratic, but because it represented a maturing of the American population and seeing a candidate as good for America regardless of race. I found the racist backlash shocking and unbecoming.

Trump’s “Drain the Swamp” was appealing at first. One did not need to do deep research to know that he was a man of no morals, shaky business principals and lower intelligence. His MO has not change. America is suffering serious embarrassment on the world front and we have a dangerous man in charge of our military and nuclear arsenal.  

The Republican Party as a whole has lost its mind. With no credible leader they move from one hurtful policy to another. Only a few have stepped up and said that the “Emperor has no clothes”.  Even the president’s own Secretary of State does not deny calling the President a moron.   

CNN’s Jill Filipovic summed up beautifully the state of the GOP in the editorial article “How low will the GOP go?”

Roy Moore, a religious zealot running for a US Senate seat out of Alabama, has been credibly accused of pursuing and preying on teenage girls when he was in his 30s. One was just 14 years old when, she alleges, Moore -- stripped to his underpants -- touched her intimately and tried to get her to touch his genitals. Moore denies the allegations.
And in one of the more shocking and disgusting moves in a year marked by shocking and disgusting politics, the Republican Party (and Trump) are supporting him.

But Trump is a figurehead, not a king, and Republicans don't have to follow his every whim. Some, including Jeff Flake and John McCain, are refusing to get behind Moore. But the organized party apparatus is now backing him. The party of "family values" and morals, so delicate they think bigoted bakers shouldn't have to make wedding cakes for gay people, are endorsing a man who, by many accounts, would prowl malls and courthouses looking for teens to "date."

This is a broken party. Trump is the largest and most obnoxious symbol of that, but GOP support of Moore shows that this isn't about individual awful men. It's about a toxic institution that has proven itself beyond redemption. 

Note for this week: The president has fully endorsed Roy Moore. With a morally corrupt political party and president, let us hope the people of Alabama have the intelligence to do the right thing even if the president cannot. If Moore is elected, Alabama, the Republican Party and this President will be tainted by the stain of Roy Moore for many years to come.  

Further note Tuesday evening late: The right thing was done by the people of Alabama.  A wake up call to politicians who think the extreme should be normal.    

Friday, December 8, 2017

Friend's Friday - Thursday Colony Hotel

Harvey at the Piano

Thursday evening at the Polo Lounge, Palm Beach.  A fun group with Harvey impromptu at the piano. One of my favorite song for the lounge era is "Stardust" by Hoagy Carmichael. I love that song and Harvey always plays it for me. Thank you Harvey.   

After the Colony, Caitlin and I had dinner at Bice, Palm Beach. It is about a block and a half off the ocean, off of a Worth Avenue Via. A nice evening. To be repeated as necessary.  

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Smile for Better Health

A few evenings ago I had a wonderful time as Rhonda. I have mentioned the Thursday evening gathering at the Colony’s Polo Lounge before.  I have fallen into a regular group and am welcomed.  It is a fun evening.  

Harvey provides an impromptu piano serenade, Charlie always has a big hug and many "Islanders", as the Palm Beach crowd refers to it self, welcome me with air kissed.    

I always notice after being there, a calmness and sense or peace occurs. It carries over into the next day and always provided a smile and sense of satisfaction. I have referred to these escapes previously as my visits to the land of femininity. A place I enjoy and return to frequently.

According to a study there are good reasons to smile and be happy. Science has shown that the mere act of smiling can lift your mood, lower stress, boost your immune system and possibly even prolong your life.

Happiness is what makes us smile. The fact is, as Dr. Isha Guptaa neurologist from IGEA Brain and Spine explains, a smile spurs a chemical reaction in the brain, releasing certain hormones including dopamine and serotonin. “Dopamine increases our feelings of happiness. Serotonin release is associated with reduced stress. Low levels of serotonin are associated with (a lessening in) depression and aggression,” says Dr. Gupta. 
Yes, on these evenings I smiled a lot. I shared my happiness and hope I also engendered happiness; Happiness is intoxicating. Escapes are good for you and absolutely add to your sense of well-being. Just what the doctor ordered.   

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

T'is The Season - Holiday Party Time

I have my first "Holiday Party" of the Season '17 coming up this Sunday. A luncheon at the Hobe Sound Golf Club

I saw where my friend and her partner enjoyed the Mercedes Benz Club of America, so found a local club and joined. I attended a meeting at a nearby Mercedes  dealership in October and enjoyed the presentation. The members were friendly and welcoming.    

I love cars, interesting monthly events and getting out, so I am a member for the next year with a freshly minted name badge. This coming Sunday we are having what I told is their annual holiday lunch party.  "Business Casual" is the dress code and I was pleased to see that the guys are encouraged to wear jackets and not denim. Business casual covers a lot so after seeing other fashion layouts I have decided on the above skirt and top. The a-line skirt is a little shorter and full than it appears. The Lauren top is a simple jersey knit - neither are fancy.  

I am open to suggestions. I decided on, not a dress, in that although I am in the typical age group of most of the members, I did not sense that the group is dressy. I hope that I am wrong, but just in case a skirt not pants.  

I have several more dinners and events coming up this month so hopefully I will have photos. The holiday time is always fun and provides opportunities to get out, be elegant and have fun. T'is the Season as the song "Deck the Halls" encourage. Even going out a restaurant you can be a little more dressy this time of the year. Plan your escapes accordingly and dress for the season. 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

A.J.K. O’donnell

andrew joseph  kimberley o'donnell

A Life In Transitions: I Had To Lose Myself To Find Myself.

I found an article written by a.j.k. o’donnell at Huffpost. Kimberly appears to be somewhat of a writing prodigy. At her current 20 years old, she is already an acclaimed American author, poet, and award-winning activist. She began her writing career when she was eight.    

She documents in this very well thought out article, how she overcome self-doubt that left her without a strong sense of authentic self.  This is from the article:

In this life, I desire nothing more than to be authentic. The road to authentic being is a difficult one. There are moments when the conviction is empowering, it is unbreakable, and it hinges on nothing but introspective resolution. For every moment of this, it seems there are outweighing times when the conviction is tested. In those periods, it is ok to lose yourself, in an effort to fully find the authenticity you fervently seek. I know it has shown me, though painful to experience, that losing my authentic being for the ‘acceptance’ or ‘comfort’ of others, did nothing but place anguish on my soul. I have no desire to ever return to that desolation. I leave this void of person hood with a mighty conviction, rejuvenated self-awareness, and powerful sense of purpose.
My name is a.j.k. o’donnell. I am transgender. I transcend gender. I bend it. I break it. I create it. I command it.

If you wan to know more about this super interesting member of our community read "More Than a 'Boy Who Paints His Nails'"

Monday, December 4, 2017

Feminine Differential - A Tale of Two Cities.

As a male have you ever though about your color pallet? 

During my last Portland visit I notice the difference as soon as I stepped off the plane. It was not just the coats and rain gear but the muted colors. I had been forewarned on my previous trip to the north-west, that blacks, browns, and grays were the prevailing colors. As I walked around downtown Portland OR this time I was taken by the lack of color in the clothing. Yes, there was an occasional deep red wool coat but the overall pallet was (sorry) dull. I am not saying that the fashions were unattractive and most female executives seemed very well dressed, however there was a marked differential. OK, Florida is a different place and not the typical east-coast look with it's bright "Lilly" blue/teal paisley skirts, pants and shorts; However, what a difference.  

Nordstroms - West-Coast on the top - East-Coast on the bottom.

My Saturday evening was attending a hotel nightclub with a live band and dancing. I was not sure what to wear, in that I did not want to stand out and draw unnecessary attention. So I did choose white pants and a grey sweater.  Still, in a crowded, less than well lighted room, the white pants did stand out - Black next time.        

Here is what I found as a discussion point at "HerCampus.com". Interesting.  

East Coast Style:

The style in the Eastern region of the US is definitely sleeker and more polished than the opposing region. Navy, white, bright greens and pinks make consistent appearances and simple patterns, i.e. checker, stripe, polka dot, are common. East Coast style has structure and purpose, even when the look is casual and/or laid-back. Unlike the West, outfits are easily sophisticated without coming across uptight, and an Easterner rarely mismatches. East Coast ladies have tastefully mastered the art of layering and bold color usage without looking overdone. Casual jeans make rare appearances and outfits are never less than precisely chic.

West Coast Style:

In the West, style is more carefree and relaxed, even when dressed up (contradictory of the Eastern counterpart)...  West Coast style walks the fine line between careless and creative and does so in the most chic manner. Ivory and black are constant go-to’s...

A Florida Lilly Store

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Friday, December 1, 2017

Friend's Friday - Tami's Knowing The River

Guest Post by Tami

I enjoy American literature, and Mark Twain’s Life on the Mississippi is one of my many Twain favorites.

I can easily understand the awe Twain felt for the big river and all its magnificence.  It was world unto itself, seen through the eyes of a young steam boat pilot surrounded by beauty, danger and mystery.  In this story Twain shares that once he became a seasoned pilot, much of what he saw and felt (of the Mississippi), earlier faded in favor of the objective straight forward task of navigation.  He then ponders the view of a doctor who may in time develop the same clinical view of a lovely woman patient he might examine; no longer mindful of her beauty.  This too is beautiful.  

When I became fascinated with the thought (at a very young age), of becoming a girl, my perspective was much like young Twain's yearning for adventure on the beautiful river. My captivating dream continued for decades until adulthood; as the forbidden and mysterious wonder of what being a woman could really be like. I knew it had to be special.

Women were wonderful in my world but many aspects were exceedingly difficult to comprehend.  I got along with them beautifully and felt I fit in, but there were always those unknowns.  For me, they lived on a pedestal, and I observed at a respectable distance unable to discover all the answers by just dressing up.

Then slowly with observation, listening, practice, study, and the multiplicity of steps one might take to improve one’s appearance, my persistence resulted in confidence  With confidence came more experience and with experiences came friendships with women, compliments, encouragement and acceptance.  How gratifying it is to be told one is accepted and reassured in the many ways friends assure us of their bonds.  The key to what I sought, was unlocked with my own refined presentation, femininity and personality.

In short order, the mysteries of womanhood, femininity and what they were and who I was melted away.  I learned that they were very much like me, (or I like them), in most ways.  The thrills and excitement of my early days of dressing evolved into the new normal.  Living part time as Tami, I do so naturally, comfortably, easily, and without hesitation.  I understand who I am and like an seasoned pilot, I go about navigating through the day like any women might.  

The enjoyment is very different now, but much better without the mystery and wonder.  Now there is comfort, peace and the enjoyment of just being me, knowing the river well.


Thursday, November 30, 2017

Never Too Late For a Happy Childhood

"The problem is, everyone knows I am jealous because you look prettier (in my dress)
 than I do."

NewsRadio television show 1996

More photos here on Femulate

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

The Best of Times - Oregon

My Photos - Oregon - Cannon Beach and Mt. Hood on approach  

I love Portland Oregon. I had an installation/training there two years ago and another the first two week of in November. I spent the weekend kicking around the area again and relaxing. It is beautiful and is such a sharp contrast to Florida. In a way, diagonally across the US. I love the terrain and watching the clouds drift across the nearby hills/mountains is so relaxing. Deep green with muted grays were everywhere. This mixed with and the fall colors made everything enchanted.  

Last time there I had concerts planned and theater events. This trip I had two installations planned, cut with a weekend stay. Earlier that week, I had a dinner planned with a blog friend (photos in this post). Weekend plans did not workout so I planned time to see some of the places I missed last time and chill - literally. 

Almost no makeup
Previously I had my hair done and much to my surprise the stylist was still at the same salon when I called. I booked a shampoo and blow-out for Friday afternoon. Having finished at the client, I did rush a bit to get to the saloon and had on very little makeup at the time. Niki, did a lovely job (photo here). She works at the Firefly Salon just across the bridge in Vancouver Washington. With the glow of my beautiful hair style, I had a quiet dinner in the hotel restaurant alone that evening. 

Saturday, I traveled to Cannon Beach taking the "over the mountain" drive from Portland. Wow, Haystack Rock and the surrounding coastline is a beautiful sight. You cannot fully appreciate the Haystack Rock's size without referencing the people in the foreground walking on the beach. Lunch was hot and delicious clam chowder, at the Wayfarer Restaurant overlooking the rock. I spent over two chilly hours walking this scenic Pacific Beach - So different from Florida and so beautiful. 

After, my drive back, I dressed nicely and went down to the restaurant area and listened to a band playing dance music for about an hour and a half - A big crowd. Sunday morning I had a relaxing breakfast in the hotel's restaurant overlooking the Columbia River. Later a movie across the river in Vancouver. Sunday evening was dinner again with Marcia and after, getting ready for my next client/repacking. An early morning drive down to Salem to start my second installation.
Best of all, was the fact that from the time, mid-Friday to Sunday night, I was myself. I have done this many times before, however actually having no plans and enjoyed the moments away from home was the best escape. No one seemed to notice or care and that made for "The best of times is now".  

La Cage - The Best of Times Is Now (2010)

Where will your next escape be?  

Monday, November 27, 2017

David Cassidy’s Heartbreaking Last Words

David Cassidy, a teen idol of the 1970s, died in Florida on Tuesday, days after being hospitalized and experiencing organ failure. He was 67.

Actress Katie Cassidy, daughter of the late David Cassidy, spoke out about her father’s death in an emotional tweet on Friday.

In her note, Cassidy shed light on her father’s final moments and revealed his heartbreaking last words. 

“Words can’t express the solace our family’s received from all the love & support during this trying time,” said (Katie) Cassidy, who stars on The CW’s superhero series “Arrow.”

She wrote:

My father’s last words were 'So much wasted time.

This will be a daily reminder for me to share my gratitude with those I love as to never waste another minute.

Cherish - David Cassidy


While we have our health, facilities, and means let us all work to make sure that these are not our last words.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Political Cartoons 11-26

Programming Note: This Sunday (today) at 10 pm CNN's, This is Life with Lisa Ling has the subject "Transbeauty".  Here is the preview.