The Gobblers, The Grabbers and The Grateful

The Gobblers, The Grabbers and The Grateful

 

It’s another day of being Pink Collar Savvy and Chic on Purpose, and as I resume blogging in the new year, I’d like to back track and reflect on  Thanksgiving as it relates to The Gobblers, The Grabbers and The Grateful. At the homeless shelter where I’m the Women’s Center Director, we see a ton of giving  from Thanksgiving  through New Year’s Day. The ladies and children receive generous meal donations –– not just for dinner, but bounteous breakfasts, lavish lunches and fancy feasts throughout the holiday season. The abundance doesn’t stop with food but extends to gifts from small jewelry trinkets to designer clothing and handbags, to all kinds of activities and crafts, to more toys than the children can possibly play with, and everything in-between. So do the responses of the residents. Returning to work for the first time since the day before Christmas Eve (I’ve worked from home some with my broken ankle), I observed The Gobblers, The Grabbers and The Grateful.

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Shabby Chic Melamine serving platter. A steal from TJ Maxx at under $10!

No sooner had I pulled into the lot this morning than one of the residents greeted me with an offer to help with my bags and walker. While doing so, she expressed how thankful  she is for everything received throughout the holidays. As she carried my stuff, I crutched alongside her, my ankle a burden, but my heart light. The best holidays I’ve ever had. We’re so blessed! she enthused. Clearly, she’s one of The Grateful.

Soon after we got inside –– with other considerate residents holding doors for us –– the atmosphere shifted. Unlike the attitude of gratitude that met me at the car,  staff filled me in on complaints about leftovers and meal options after the bounty. This baffles me. I work hard to make a living and LOVE LEFTOVERS! And I’ve lived in a homeless shelter where there were ZERO meals provided. So I can’t imaging turning my nose up when leftovers of scrumptious food is served. Yet that’s what we’re getting now. These are The Gobblers.

Wondering how the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s spirit can evaporate by day 2 of 2020,  I encountered the saddest situation –– a woman who has complained and never been satisfied with anything during her time in shelter. Having walked in her shoes when my abusive marriage ended and I was made destitute –– a D or challenge women face –– I’d be the last one to say anyone should be made to feel beholden because of their situation. But I’d also say acting entitled –– as if collecting on what the universe somehow owes –– isn’t the way to go either. Nor is biting the hand that provides shelter, meals, clothes, support, etc. Unfortunately, this woman and so many others fit under The Grabbers.

Please don’t get me wrong, too often in my life I’ve fit under The Gobblers and The Grabbers myself. My prayer for 2020 is that I’d always be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and fall under The Grateful. That’s my prayer for you too. If we express an an attitude of gratitude, no matter the Ds we face, it goes a long way towards  minimizing our barriers and maximizing beauty and our best lives..

Be savvy & chic,

                                                                                                            ~Pink Collar Coach

 

Grateful, Thankful and Blessed In My Blended Family Mess

Grateful, Thankful and Blessed In My Blended Family Mess

Day 191 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project was early Thanksgiving at my home and it has me feeling grateful, thankful and blessed in my blended family mess. The messy part is that divorces have created a situation where my stepsons will be out of town with their mother for the holiday and my children are with their father. In order for us to be able to celebrate with the former, our Thanksgiving gathering was today. And while I wish my babies could have been with us, I was in my element preparing to host.  Setting out my pumpkins stirred up feelings of gratitude and thankfulness. Soon I realized how blessed I am in the midst of my mess.

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My Thanksgiving decor is comprised of lots of white and bling. These pumpkins say it all for me. Table set with Simply Shabby Chic tablecloth, glass cloche with flowers, pitcher filled with my favorite – roses, and other Shabby Chic touches.

After shopping, cleaning/decorating, and then cooking, I paused right before everyone arrived to take a picture of the dining room table where appetizers were set up buffet style. Getting one afterward is impossible because they fall on the food like they’re starved! Looking around my home and at the abundance of food – a feast really – prepared for my family, I started to miss my children but again shifted my focus to having an attitude of gratitude and thankfulness for what I do have instead of what I don’t.

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The day was overcast without much natural light so this picture could considered gloomy.     With a grateful, thankful, blessed attitude, I see even cast in shadows it is lovely. 

 

 

Consummate athletes, my hubby and stepsons are not enamored with my Shabby Chic decorating style. Because I moved into their home and needed to make it feel like my own we’ve had our challenges with this over the years  (I’d come from having 100% decorating freedom to living in what amounted to a Sports Central Lodge). Thankfully, now that they’re older with two of them having their own places and one of them living here only half the time, it seems how I decorate means less and less to them. While I stick with my aesthetic, creating an atmosphere that makes them want to come home means a great deal to me. Making their childhood home inviting, warm and welcoming is my goal. Judging by the wonderful time we had eating, watching football (the Bengals/Bungles win was a pleasant surprise), playing Golfopoly (Monopoly for those who’d rather be golfing), and NOT looking at phones I’m proud to say, it seems mission accomplished.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach and stepmom to three huge sons, mom-in-law to my oldest stepson’s wife and Mimi (a derivative of Tammi) for a precious, precocious four-year-old.                                         As usual, Hubby would rather take the pics than be in them.                                                                 Calvin Klein rust colored sweater and pants. I tossed the matching duster while cooking!
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The dining room tonight. Different lighting, same loveliness.                                                                 The pink Happy Harvest sign was Home Goods $4 clearance steal!

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Cygnet who saw her ex-mother-in-law for the first time in a decade at the grocery store this morning and her wasband waiting as she checked out, while I sometimes wish for my children’s sake that their family was intact, I’m very grateful to have been grafted into a family where I’m accepted and loved for who I am. Even though in many ways my hubby and the boys and I couldn’t be more polar opposite. Even though we don’t always understand each other. The difference is  I’m no longer abused or mistreated. Of course my big fat blended family isn’t perfect. None is. But when we have days like today, I feel nothing but grateful, thankful and blessed. That’s when I don’t see us as a mess. I just see us as mine.

How about you? What “messes” do you have in your life for which you are grateful and thankful? How do they bless you?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Time To Talk Turkey Thanksgiving Decor and Trusting Our Decisions More

Time To Talk Turkey Thanksgiving Decor and Trusting Our Decisions More

It’s Day 180 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and since I’m restricted to a clear liquid diet and am sipping on my chicken bouillon supper, I’ve got poultry, and Thanksgiving turkey decor on the brain. Because of my lifelong natural affinity for pink and pastels and my twenty-plus year love affair with all things Shabby Chic, I’ve never been a fan of traditional Thanksgiving colors or decor.  Thankfully for me, (pun intended), in recent years the retail market has experienced a shift and now offers a selection of holiday decor in non-traditional colors. That being the case, I have to take some time to talk turkey thanksgiving decor.

Before I do, I’ll explain my train of thought. In order to get to the bottom of the abdominal pain that landed me in the ER twice in the last week and a half, tomorrow I must undergo some tests, hence the dietary restrictions. Having missed out on the chance to check out Target’s new “Hand and Hearth” line from HGTV’s Fixer Uppers Joanna and Chip Gaines yesterday because of the tornado watch, I used the need to pick up Jello as an excuse to do so today. Surprisingly underwhelmed, instead of having to chose between several items I thought I’d love, I purchased nothing which is great for my pocketbook!

Housebound for almost a month, I wasn’t ready to go home and wandered over to TJMaxx. I’d spotted a carved wooden turkey a while back and was intrigued but didn’t buy her. Then, while purusing a blog I discovered while reading Artful Blogging this weekend, I spotted the same turkey in a Thanksgiving feature. Feeling as if it wasn’t a coincidence, I made a mental note to see if she was still there whenever I made it back in.  She was. Given the two sightings, I usually would have snatched her right up, but hesitated. After some deliberation and consulting a store manager who’s become a friend and the sales associate at check out, I bought the inexpensive piece thinking, I can always return her…Then I got her home and Fell. In. Love.

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Lovely light teal turkey surrounded by Simply Shabby Chic candle lanterns, plates, and a birthday cake piggy bank that live in the dining room. The Shabby Chic French style sideboard was one of the first pieces I splurged on for my townhouse after being homeless. 
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I love adding touches of whimsy in my home and imagine the approach of Thanksgiving would be a time where this lady turkey would need this reminder!                                             BTW – If you haven’t seen Free Birds, it’s a fun movie animated movie about the lengths to which turkeys will go to avoid the Thanksgiving Table!

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Cygnet (a young swan), who has been posting quotes from The Smile Jar for a few months now, seldom has one aligned so well with my blog post. Today’s was: “Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t.” – Erica Jong. Knowing how much I love the softer side of Thanksgiving decor, I still wrestled with whether to purchase a unique piece that spoke to me from the beginning to the degree that I solicited advice from two other people. I strive to be a good steward over my resources, so I suppose the hesitation was whether or not I needed her or wanted her. The answer is that I wanted her. And while I won’t condone instant gratification of our wants, I am grateful that I went with mine. The fact that the curved edge of the sideboard caught my eye the minute I walked in the door and fit the piece perfectly was confirmation. Not  only that I made the right choice, but that I should trust my decisions and not doubt them.

What about you? Do you seek advice when you know the answer? About home or office decor? Personal and/or professional decisions? How can you be more Pink Collar Savvy & Chic in these areas of your life?

Be savvy &  chic,

~Pink Collar Coach