Me & My Baby in Blue

Me & My Baby in Blue

It’s Day 346 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and when my husband and I both showed up for a meeting we had this morning wearing the same color, I had to get a picture of me and my baby in blue. Though I’d love to be, it’s not often we’re dressed as a matched set! In fact, sometimes when we’re going out and I try to find out what he’s wearing so I can coordinate, he’ll evade the question just to avoid being match match-y. I think I get why he chafes at this but enjoy having pictures of us that look like we belong together. Besides, my OCD neurosis about matching messes with me if our colors are too off! That wasn’t the case today, so I had my middle stepson snap this shot of me and my baby in blue.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach & My Baby in Blue on our back deck. Not only are our colors alike, we’re both in Calvin Klein. It’s my favorite shirt of his because it brings out his blue eyes. I’m in a sleeveless floral shell and gray skirt I’ve had for years. The handbag is from last spring and the shoes were a Christmas gift. The cardigan is a recent forever to keep find – I collect them in all colors because I’m a freeze cat and wear them all spring and summer. All TJ Maxx.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose wife, I love it when my husband and I are on the same page clothing wise. But it’s even better when we’re lock step in life. Though we are dissimilar in many ways – a couple version of Mutt and Jeff in height, a consummate athlete and an artist, a manly man and fru fru as it gets – we are alike in some of the areas where it counts. We share the same faith, servant’s heart, and sincere desire to coach, encourage and inspire others. And though we don’t always see eye to eye (literally – ha ha!), we’ve got each other’s backs. Like the trees surrounding us, in many ways, he’s been my shelter… I’m blessed to have gotten it right with this one! Even though we sometimes clash, when we’re in harmony, we function like two parts of a whole. Today was one of those days, so I’m glad to have captured me and my baby in blue.

What do you think of couples coordinating?  Are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about capturing life’s special moments on the home front and/or at work – however you’re dressed?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

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Outdoor Office

Outdoor Office

It’s Day 345 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and it’s been such a joy to spend it working on and in my outdoor office. As I posted a few days ago, while my hubby was out of town last week, I heaved all of the outdoor furniture back into place after he kindly power washed it but left it beneath the deck. Though I got all of the resin wicker pieces out, I couldn’t find where he put the dining chairs that do desk duty when I work alfresco. Nor could I hoist the nine foot sunbrella up alone. Today, I coaxed him to help me get the chairs out and he in turn enlisted my middle stepson, who is officially out on college break, to assist him with the umbrella. The glass table top received a thorough wipe down and all of the chairs got sprayed and scrubbed with bleach water. None of above is pictured here, but now from my shady seat on the freshly spring cleaned dining/desk area, I’m afforded a gorgeous vantage point to view the other side of the deck which serves as my morning lougning/reading outdoor office.

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Outdoor Office. White resin wicker from Menards. Many people want brown, but I persisted til I got what I wanted for Mother’s Day nearly a decade ago. The new Simply Shabby Chic floral pillows from Target pair with old white crochet ones & infuse blue & purple into the mix. That called for purple flowers instead of my usual pink. The birdbath was filthy when I found it at Kroger, so I offered $5 for it. Walmart rug- $20 All other accessories bought over years- TJ Maxx. 

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose entrepreneur who is an author, life coach and speaker, I also did post tasks from the Seasons of Her Soul Coffee & Connect Book Signing, touched base with coaching clients, scheduled appointments, worked on a call for proposal and marketed an upcoming Pink Collar Savvy & Chic/High Heeled Success workshop on “Overcoming the Fear Factor”. In addition to all of that, I took care of some personal business (with a little housework thrown in) as well. It’s only Monday, but the week is off to such a busy start, it would be easy to lose any of the relaxation I enjoyed over the weekend. But sitting with my skin kissed by the sun, the scent of honeysuckle wafting by, a scrumptious fruit smoothie in my hand, birdsong in my ears, and beauty everywhere my eyes land, I’m able to hold on to it in my outdoor office.

How can you be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic about making an outdoor office space? With a laptop, it’s easy to complete many work related tasks. Even if that’s not doable, can you  you make the grocery list or pay the bills there on the weekend?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

To learn more about the upcoming workshop, please visit the events page at http://www.highheeledsuccess.com.

To preview/purchase the print or Kindle version of my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, please visit Amazon.com at

http://amzn.to/2CXE6Wj or http://amzn.to/2r7qtm9.

It is also available on Barnes and Noble.com at https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/seasons-of-her-soul-tammi-ector/1127818446?ean=9780998966359.

 

 

 

Shabby Chic Kitchen & Dining Decor Deals

Shabby Chic Kitchen & Dining Decor Deals

It’s Day 344 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and after days of blogging about nothing but my first book signing, I’m happy to do post on Shabby Chic kitchen and dining decor deals. After the sensational Seasons of Her Soul Coffee & Connect book signing yesterday, I came home briefly, changed and then headed out to a family birthday party. Exhausted from all the excitement, I knew I wouldn’t last long and drove separate from my hubby. He suggested I park in a church parking lot and then hop in his car due to limited spaces at the house. Hesitant, I grew more skeptical when he said he’d drive me back to my car whenever I wanted. Needless to say, he wasn’t ready to do that when I was, so I ended up walking about a mile uphill in the sweltering sun. If I wasn’t ready to crash before, I certainly was by the time I finally made it to my car! At any rate, I didn’t nap but blogged and eventually fell asleep watching HGTV. Today, after watching the Royal Wedding since I missed it due to the signing (I’m an Anglophile, so thank goodness for the Internet!) church, teaching Zumba and a lengthy heart-to-heart with my neighbor, I’m settling down for the American Idol Finale. Before I do, I thought writing a lighthearted post that wasn’t too taxing would be just the ticket. Recently, I scored some Shabby Chic kitchen and dining decor deals at Easter that fit the bill perfectly.

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Ruffled Linen Blend Table Runner – The Prairie by Rachel Ashwell, Linen Apron – Shabby Chic, and Floral Apron – Simply Shabby Chic. TJ Maxx, Home Goods and Target respectively. I’ve actually had the floral apron for a while but just found the other items the night before Easter. They hang in the kitchen. 

Rachel Ashwell’s Simply Shabby Chic line for Target released around 2003 when my daughter, Liv, was born. I remember the ecstasy I felt when I discovered I could actually purchase authentic items from my design sheroe. At first, the shelves were filled with so many beautiful items I had to exercise serious restraint not to blow all the grocery money on them since I’d become a full-time homemaker after Liv’s birth. Soon, however, the supply dwindled down to mostly bedding and curtains with an occasional new or seasonal item thrown in. That being the case, when I went to Home Goods the night before Easter on a quest for something to freshen up the table to host our family gathering, I was elated to find aprons, napkins and table runners ala The Prairie by Rachel Ashwell and genuine Shabby Chic! Spoiled for choice of color – white, taupe, gray, blue – and styles – checked, ruffled, stitched, striped, all at reasonabel prices ranging $7.99 for a set of four dinner napkins to $12.99 for 100% linen table runners, of course I loaded up!

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Shabby Chicophile, I’ve learned that these treasures aren’t always available. In fact, after Zumba today, I looked for any remaining and suspect others snatched them up knoiwng the same because I found none. Like me, they’re savvy and have owned their sense of style – in this case, Shabby Chic. They’re not about to let the real deal slip through their hands when it makes a rare appearance. Snatching them up doesn’t have to break the bank; when you pass on things that aren’t truly your style, you have the means to purchase what is. Like I did with my Shabby Chic kitchen and dining decor deals!

How are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about scoring your sense of style, whatever it is, decor deals for home or office?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

 

 

Seasons of Her Soul Coffee & Connect Book Signing Preparation Celebration!

Seasons of Her Soul Coffee & Connect Book Signing Preparation Celebration!

It’s Day 342 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I’m rewarding myself with a Seasons of Her Soul Coffee & Connect Book Signing Preparation Celebration! (Details here – Seasons of Her Soul Book Signing – Coffee Beans & Brew – Final). It’s fourteen hours until the event- and other than this post, packing the car, ironing my dress and doing my nails, I’m done for the night! Woot! Woot! It may sound like there’s still a lot to do, but for the first time in like ever, I’m not going to be up until the wee hours getting ready. But I could have. Wednesday, when I was in full-on decorating outdoor spaces mode, I almost put off shopping for/styling the event until today but am now thanking the Lord I came to my senses and spent most of yesterday and today on it. After teaching Zumba this morning, I attempted to wrestle the Square Chip Card Reader Beast to the ground, however, sage advice from someone who owns one was to avoid the anxiety this time around. The bad news is that means cash and checks only tomorrow. The good news is, with that off my plate, I put the time to much better use and nailed down final details. When I made the final purchase – new eyeliner and mascara at Kroger – I couldn’t resist treating myself to not just my regular green tea latte (non-fat of course), but to a Matcha Green Creme (still non-fat but filled in the dome lid). YUM! The perfect way to celebrate my strategic Seasons of Her Soul Coffee & Connect Book Signing Preparation!

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, in business casual for running around on preparation errands.                      I’m loving the floral trend this spring – so me – & mixing & matching them. A sleeveless top for outdoor temps & a coral shrug for indoor air conditioning. The pants, slides & bag pick up the rose & burgundy in the top. And I’ve got to stop taking pics with glasses on top of my head! ; )                                                                                                                                        All Calvin Klein from TJ Maxx. My signing is at another coffee shop but I’m equal opportunity! 

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose debut novelist, you can probably tell I’m excited! The thought of meeting readers I’ve never met and seeing faces I haven’t for a long time makes me giddy. In fact, even though I’m a bit exhausted, I can imagine not being able to sleep…But I’ll definitely get more than if I’d procrastinated. Thankfully, I’m becoming a little more savvy and chic and practicing what I preach to my coaching clients. Because I am, as soon as the cars loaded, I can eat my sushi dinner, enjoy my latte for dessert, paint my nails and get back to reading my Francine Rivers’ novel. I’ve always wanted to be her when I grow up as a writer. Having my first Seasons of Her Soul Coffee & Connect Book Signing – and being able to celebrate being fully prepared – makes me feel like I just might get there.

Hope you’ll be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and join me or at least send up some blogosphere love!

Be savvy & chic ,

~Pink Collar Coach 

 

Couldn’t Check Out My Book Because They’re All Checked Out!

Couldn’t Check Out My Book Because They’re All Checked Out!

It’s Day 338 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and since I had a downtown meeting, I planned to view my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, on the shelves of the main library but couldn’t check out my book because they’re all checked out! An early morning meeting across the street provided the perfect opportunity to pop in and see my novel displayed in the Fiction section; instead, I was given a printout showing me the twelve libraries that carry it along with whether the book is on the shelves or due for return. Learning that nine of the fifteen copies, including the ones the main branch carries are out MADE. MY. AUTHOR. DAY! Still, I would have loved to have seen the book with the Dewey Decimal System code on the spine, however, I made due by having Mackenzie – who was a on break from shelving – take a picture of me with the copy I had in my bag from the previous meeting. Besides, how could I possibly be disappointed that I couldn’t check out my book because they’re all checked out?!!!

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, with my proof copy of Seasons of Her Soul, holding it near where it sits on the Inspirational Fiction shelf. Dressed to impress for my meeting, I’m in a Calvin Klein denim wash sheath dress purchased a few years ago with a newer jacket that elevates it to suit status. A silver button cinches it at the waist & dictated I carry a handbag with blue, silver & taupe, picked up by the pumps. All Calvin Klein/TJ Maxx bought over time to build professional wardrobe.

Mackenzie also made the trip worthwhile. I’ve never met an author we shelve!, she enthused as she snapped away. I’m going to read it as soon as it comes back in. I gave her a book card with this website address and she said she’d look for this post. So here’s a shout out Mackenzie! Bolstered by the interactions with her, the librarians and my nostalgic trip down Main Library Memory Lane, where I spent so much of my childhood, I decided to head north to the library in the community where I now reside.

There, I initiated the process of having the West Chester Library carry the book so it can be distributed in its four branches and Library on Wheels program. In addition, I picked up an application to have a table at the Local Author Fair in the fall. Finally, I discovered  the library hosts a writing group once a month, so I might try that out in June! This trip also proved to be worthwhile.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose author, there’s no better feeling than to know the book I labored over for twenty years is finally being read and touching women’s lives. This was confirmed yesterday at our Mother’s Day lunch where a family friend with adult twin daughters shared how one read the book and was so moved by it she’s hesitant to have her sister read for fear it will stir up painful emotions regarding being single. Our friend thought I might take the feedback negatively but it’s just the opposite. I want readers to feel something when they read my work. Hopefully that’s the case with all of the copies of my book I couldn’t check out because they were checked out!

Hope you’ll be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and check it out below!

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

To preview/purchase the print or Kindle version of my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, please visit Amazon.com at 
 
Memorable Mother’s Day

Memorable Mother’s Day

It’s Day 337 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I had a memorable Mother’s Day. Because I’m divorced and don’t always have my children, my husband goes out of his way to make this day extra special. He started early this week by bringing home a bouquet of daisies, irises and a pink rose. Last night he had a reservation to PF Chang’s for us, my three stepsons, our daughter-in-law and Izzy. She was born three years into my marriage to her Grandpa so I became Mimi – a derivative of Tammi – as opposed to Grandma. Dinner, dessert at The Creamery and sitting around the fountain was a good family time made even more so when my oldest stepson’s family gave me a card and an arrangement of white daisies and lilac lilies. As if that wasn’t enough, my hero hubby also had a lunch reservation for us and my teens at The Golden Lamb. A close family friend and his young adult son joined us. They enjoyed the restaurant’s storied history as much as my kiddos. We sat in a room decorated with the twelve presidents who have stayed there. All of us stuffed ourselves on delectable food, including sauerkraut ball appetizers (Hey, don’t knock em ’til you try em!) dipped in yummy sauces and sumptuous main courses like salmon and beef tenderloin. Still, we somehow had room for desert at an old-fashioned ice cream shop. Photos against the quintessentially American small town backdrop with its traditional architecture, cobblestone streets and picturesque park made this Mother’s Day memorable.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, between my teens on a Memorable Mother’s Day.                                            I’m in a Calvin Klein tank, skirt, slingback kitten heels, and a floral blouse.                                                                                The floral handbag was purchased at another time but complements the top perfectly.                    All TJMaxx.                                 

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose mom, I don’t take any of these moments for granted. Neither does my hubby. We’re divorced from our children’s other parent – one instant change with long-lasting repercussions. And our children are growing up and away faster than I would have ever imagined – a series of ongoing changes with life impacting results….Considering all of this, the card he gave me when we were back home spoke directly to my Mommy heart and blessed it:

Our life has changed so much 

since we first became parents

but in one way,

it hasn’t changed at all –

you’re still the one I love…

and you always will be.

Happy Mother’s Day 

Like I said, he goes out of his way to make sure I have a memorable Mother’s Day.

I hope you had a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Mother’s Day – whether you were being celebrated or celebrating others – and know that you are loved.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

 

My Mini-Me and Music

My Mini-Me and Music

It’s Day 328 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and my daughter’s junior high Select Vocal Ensemble solo confirmed she’s my mini-me – at least as far as music is concerned. In typical teen fashion, Liv waited until the last minute to inform me of her solo and when I gently chided her, she defended herself with, Mommy, I didn’t even try out for it! Hearing that explanation made me suspect her choir teacher had discovered the magical quality of Liv’s voice and wanted to give her a chance to shine – one that she wouldn’t have taken if she’d had to audition for it. And sure enough, though the students all sang beautifully, when petite Liv stepped up to the mic the lyrics, What would you do if I sang out of tune?, rang out pure and true, somehow special – and perfectly in tune. It reminded me so much of when I was her age and would sing. People didn’t expect that voice to come out of my body…And I earned my teaching degree on a singing scholarship. In that way, I learned tonight that Liv is my musical mini-me.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach & my Mini Me after the concert.  Believe it or not, Liv is actually taller than me by about an inch. My heeled sandals added to my stature! The ruffled dress is about six years old but still in style. And the floral handbag picks up the fun orange of the dress.                                                                                                                              All Calvin Klein from TJ Maxx and – wait for it – Steinhart! Off season sandals at bargain price.

In so many other ways, Liv is like her father. When she was born, the doctor laid her on my belly and her skin colored appeared to be the same color as mine, her nose was smooshed and looked broad like mine, and her hair was wet and curly like mine – from the birth process.  She looked exactly like my baby picture – like I’d spit her out! Then they whisked my mini me away and brought back her father! It seemed bathing her washed the color off her skin, the curl out of her hair and somehow it perked her nose up! Though she was a biracial baby girl – she looked like a White man! Once while we were at the pool  with his mother, Liv threw a fit. I shook my head and said, That face looks like his. My mother-in-law’s response: They all look like his! As Liv’s gotten older she’s reverted to looking more biracial, but her expressions, mannerisms – so much is like him. All I can do is love her and laugh about it.

Even so, as a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose mom, there have been times when I wished I could see more of myself in her. Music has provided those glimpses. One Sunday morning when I sang CeCe Winan’s Alabaster Box at church, my husband told me Liv sat enraptured the whole time I was on stage. And we’ve always sung together – me, her and Levi – The Three Musketeers, which reminds me of how my brother and cousins used to put on talent shows in our back yard. But mostly, our love of American Idol has shown how alike we are. She was born the year the show started and we watched faithfully until it supposedly went off the air forever. We were as elated to learn it was coming back on as we were heartbroken when it went off the air because that meant her dream of auditioning would never come true. I’d put her in guitar and voice lessons to support her goal but somewhere amongst all the mess that divorce is, she quit lessons. The fact that she’s picked both up on her own, partly due to Idol, makes my heart sing. And now we watch together – even if we’re not in the same physical space – and text throughout. Our favorites, opinions, reactions, etc. are usually identical.

Cami (Yes, like Tammi) Liv may not look like her mama, but she sure sounds like her. So at least as far as music goes – she’ll always be my mini me.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach