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Jenny in Florida

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Jenny in Florida last won the day on August 29 2018

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About Jenny in Florida

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  1. Dress Barn has been one of my go-to places, too, but the store near me has already closed. Roz and Ali is still open at the outlet mall, but the last couple of times I've ventured over there the parking has been a nightmare.
  2. Not $0, but my gateway drug for coming under the influence of the Christmas spirit is often coming up with a craft I want to make as a gift for someone. If that doesn't do it, then shopping for items to donate usually does. Since I live here in tourist land, a potentially $0 option (if I can resist spending or eating while I'm there) is an evening wandering Disney Springs looking at the decorations. I like to go after dark so there are twinkly lights and temps are as crisp as they are going to get here in Florida. I am, to put it mildly, not feeling the holidays this year, despite having already done a nice chunk of donation shopping and started multiple crafts-for-gifts projects. So, I actually just told my husband this afternoon that I need a Disney Springs trip on our next free evening.
  3. Thanks everyone. Feeling encouraged after reading everyone's comments and checking the links, I bopped out to Burlington. I had good luck and found a pair of simple, straight-legged black pants and a pair of reasonably comfortable shiny red flats. And for bonus points, I paid $16 each for the pants and shoes. The pants, of course, do not have functional pockets, so I poked around a bit looking for a little red clutch. No luck on that front, but I do have a little black bag I can press into service. So now I need to wait for the blouse to arrive and see how it all works together, but assuming that I don't hate the ensemble, it's possible I might have this covered.
  4. Thank you for the link! I forgot to mention that I did adjust the neckline on the blouse and also lengthened the sleeves.
  5. I am going to my company's holiday party. I joined the organization over the summer, so this is the first such event I've attended. The dress code is listed as "cocktail attire." I pumped my boss for a little bit of info, and she indicated that people do actually dress up for these things. In case this matters to your answers, the venue is an art gallery. So, I do want to attend the event, and I want to be a good sport about the dress code thing. However, I have so many issues and challenges with this. Let's start with my normal, baseline stuff of being in my mid-50s, short and far from svelte. And, on my best day, I absolutely hate to draw attention to myself or stand out in any way. My goal is always to look appropriate, presentable and unremarkable. Also, I don't wear dresses, for a variety of reasons including the fact that my thighs don't see the light of day in anything except the most casual of situations and that I do not wear heels or uncomfortable shoes. (I swore off in the name of comfort a few years ago, but this has recently become non-negotiable because the nueropathy in my feet makes it excruciating to wear anything except comfy flats and dangerous to wear anything that separates me too much off the ground.) Oh, and I don't wear leather or any animal products (ethical vegan). And I do best in a wide width. And, just for a final fillip of fun, I had a bilateral mastectomy seven weeks ago. I am self-conscious about "going flat" but also self-conscious and often physically uncomfortable wearing the breast forms. Also, the mastectomy bras I have come up higher in front than "normal" bras, meaning that I have to be careful about necklines. Edited to add: Just remembered that the party will also be at the end of my first week of radiation therapy, which I understand may mean that side of my chest may be more tender than usual. I do not own anything remotely appropriate for this function. My daughter helped me choose this blouse, which I have ordered. But now I have to figure out pants and shoes. I know that the usual go-to for pants would be something flowy, but as a short, chubby lady who will be wearing flat shoes, I'm thinking that's not a great option. So, I could use help, please, with inspiration, ideas for places to look or, preferably, actual items to consider. I returned to work about two weeks ago and just don't have a ton of energy to go scooting all over town scouring stores. Thanks?
  6. I'm not sure I would refer to our situation ass "opting out." We have been estranged from my family of origin for more than two decades. Although we were on good terms with my husband's family, we lived across the country from them, and they are mostly gone now, unfortunately. So, we've pretty much always done "just us" holidays. I will admit that I was looking forward to the era when my kids grew up and brought home partners and eventually their own kids and we would have those wonderful, chaotic, exhausting, fun family get-togethers. But, due to the mess that is my son and daughter's relationship, I don't like my chances. When my kids were little and we developed all of these little traditions, it felt special and cozy to cocoon with "just us." But now that my daughter no longer comes home for holidays and my son is either not here or sleeps through half the day, things feel entirely too quiet and sad.
  7. I have started crocheting a mermaid tale blanket thing to give my daughter for Christmas. I'm using bulky yarn, which should help me get through it in a reasonable amount of time. I purchased (!) and downloaded patterns to crochet Lady and the Tramp ornaments for my daughter and her partner. They are moving in together (this week) and will have their first Christmas tree this year. So far, I've gotten as far as scrounging through my yarn stash to find supplies. So, we'll see how that goes. For my husband, I've started crocheting the first of what I hope will be two or three figures from this book. I'd like to finish at least Frankenstein's monster and Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde. If I complete those, I may add Quasimodo. I also ordered a couple of Muppet appliques to put on polo shirts for my husband. I made him three of these shirts several years ago. He wears them frequently and is always delighted when people compliment him on them. While I was poking around searching for the appliques, I stumbled across some Muppet-themed fabric and ordered enough to sew him a pair of pajama pants. So, I'm feeling pretty good about handmade holiday stuff for my daughter and husband. Now I just need ideas (and time/energy to execute them) for my daughter's partner, my son and his girlfriend.
  8. But the thing is that I don't want to "catch up," and I don't really see why I need to, given that the crisis is more or less over. And the fact that I am devoting so much time and energy to this useless wallowing makes it more difficult for me to focus on the stuff I care about and on doing the things I want/need to do to move forward with my life.
  9. So, one of the things I have been kind of struggling to articulate is that I genuinely don't understand why I am feeling the way I am feeling. Yes, I have/had cancer. Yes, I had surgery. Yes, there are some physical issues lingering (soreness, weakness, some weird combination of loss of sensation and tenderness/occasional pain in my left arm). Yes, I now have a much flatter chest than I did a few weeks ago. I have lost ground at work and will not be in a position to be making up much of it for a while yet. I acknowledge all of that. However, I have been assured by a whole team of doctors I trust that my cancer is/was relatively slow growing and that I am very low risk for recurrence. I've had multiple scans that show it hasn't spread. I'm recovering well from the surgery, with no complications. I have never been a person whose self-worth was especially bound up with my appearance -- In fact, I've often referred to myself as a brain carried around by a body. If the flat chest thing continues to bother me, I have the option of reconstruction in a few months once I complete and recover from radiation. My employers, while not perfect, have been and continue to be extremely understanding and patient. I have, in general, gotten off a lot easier than many other people. So, really, I literally, honestly don't understand why I feel this broken up, and especially why I feel this way now, when it's clear things are going to be okay.
  10. Yes, it does matter to me. I mean, it doesn't "matter" in the sense that it actually changes any decisions I would make, but it matters in that I always feel off balance without external touchstones. At the moment, I feel like a blubbering weakling. It might actually help me to have any kind of solid evidence that I am "succeeding" by any kind of objective measurement.
  11. No, again, that is actually the point she was trying to make, that, as she said, I'm "still in it. It's still happening." And it's not realistic to expect myself to be "over it already." When I told her at the beginning of our talk that I just feel like I'm not bouncing back, she looked me in the eye and asked if I thought I was supposed to be.
  12. No apology necessary. I appreciate the time and thought and care that went into that response. For what it's worth, your first line is pretty much the point the social worker returned to over and over.
  13. To be clear, she wasn't trying to talk me out of doing those things. She was trying to encourage me to feel good about what I have done, rather than agonizing over what I haven't/am not.
  14. To be clear, we were talking specifically about women who had been SAHMs for a good chunk of years, as in not returning to work until their children are teens/adults. With that said, this is, so far, the only information I have found that comes close to addressing that specific point. The study cited is from 2004, unfortunately. I suspect things may have changed since then. However, I saw similar stats quoted in a variety of articles: According to that one study, although 93% of women who take a career break say they want to go back, only 74% do, and only 40% return to full-time jobs. So, if we are to accept that as "fact," then yes, it is kind of true that "most women" do not go back to work full time after they are "done" raising their children.
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