Motivation Monday - Monthly Challenge Check In

Hello Lovelies!

First of all, I decided to change the name of Monday's posts from Master Class Monday to Motivation Monday.  It just sounds more, hmmm, I don't know...more...motivating?  Lol!

Last week, I introduced this month's challenge which is to exercise everyday for the next 30 days. I promised to check in with you all on this week's progress...
I'm doing well.  But in the interest of full disclosure, I admit that I didn't get a workout in every day this week.  I have started doing Yoga, however, which I quite enjoy.

Also, in the interest of losing my last 20 lbs., I have started back up on Weight Watchers.

Here I am (below) pre-divorce and pre-anxiety-related weight gain.  This is the weight I am aiming to get back to.

I am already starting to feel a difference although there isn't much in the way of a before/after type of progress to share with you yet.

That's the thing about weight loss.  It takes commitment...and time.  And because the results aren't seen immediately, it's really easy to lose focus.  But I'm in this for the long haul.

What about you?  Anyone out there willing to join me in this weight loss/health journey?
The more the merrier!

Leave me a comment or drop me an email if you're in!




What I Wore Wednesday

Welcome to this week's edition of What I Wore Wednesday.

Tuesday's Outfit:

Blouse:  from Ella Mara gifted to me by my sister
Jeans:  from Gap Outlet (last year)
Shoes:  from Groopdealz

For A Friday Evening Wedding:

Dress:  by Urban Flamingo From Called to Surf

Sunday Best:

Dress:  Banana Republic Outlet
Shoes:  by Sam & Libby for Target (a few seasons ago)



Master Class Monday: This Month's Exercise Challenge

Hello Lovelies!

I'm so glad you've joined me today. 

In keeping with my "Year of Transformation" theme, I've decided to make my posts on Monday into master classes.  By that I mean that I'm going to have my Monday posts focus on things that will help me (and hopefully you) to better ourselves.

Don't worry!!  If you come to The Shabby Nest for Interior Design inspiration or DIY projects, they're still going to be a part of my blog regularly showing up on Fridays.  On Wednesdays, you will find mostly fashion posts.

But for today's Master Class Monday, I want to talk specifically about exercise.

Just about one year ago, I started my weight loss journey.

For those of you who might not be familiar with my story, let me give you a little bit of background.  About the time that I went through my divorce, I also had some serious issues with anxiety.  And I started taking medication to help me with that.  The medication worked great for my anxiety, but unfortunately, it also made me gain a bit of weight.  Which then turned into gaining a lot of weight.  Until I had gained almost 50 lbs. 

Since starting to lose weight last year, I have lost around 30 lbs.  I am now within the healthy weight range for my height.  But, I still want to get rid of the remaining 20 pounds which will bring me back to the weight I started at.  So as I head into the second year of my weight loss journey, I am focusing on the last 20 lbs.

The photo below is a before/after that I shared on Instagram a few months back (you should follow me if you don't already - I'm so much fun. Lol!)...I am currently at the same weight as the after.  I've been hanging onto it for a while...hence my recommitment to losing that last 20.

And this month, I am specifically focusing on exercise.  My goal is to exercise every day for the next thirty days.  I am focusing on Pilates and Yoga.  Pilates is an old stand by for me.  I find it to be the most effective form of exercise for toning up my body.  Yoga is new to me, but because I love Pilates and since I was a dancer for my all of my growing-up years, I think Yoga will be a nice addition to my workout. 

I'd love to have you join me!   Pick your favorite form of exercise or exercises and commit to working out every day!  I know we can do it.

I'll check in weekly and let you know how I'm doing...if you'll do the same!

Let's rock this thing!




What I Wore Wednesday

Okay Lovelies...

Today is my first installment of What I Wore Wednesday.

For this series, I thought it would be fun to share with you some of the looks that I wear each week...both to work and on my days off.  It's important to me that women realize that wearing what they love is acceptable regardless of their age.

40 is not what it used to be...neither is 50, 60 or beyond.
Our age doesn't mean anything, and it makes me crazy when I see those articles that delineate what is okay to wear for women of a certain age group.

As long as your outfit is appropriate to the situation (i.e. - don't wear cut off shorts to work etc.) then choose what makes you feel beautiful, or fun, or sophisticated, or cute or whatever and make it work for you!

These photos are selfies off my phone...I promise that I will up my game as these posts continue.  I will at the very least enlist my kids to take the photos instead of taking them in the mirror in my family room.  Oh, and I'll work on posing as well.  That's definitely going to be a challenge.

But for today...Enjoy!

We'll start with our Sunday Best.  This photo was taken right after church of me and my daughter.  I'm wearing a blush pink dress from Called to Surf.  Emma is wearing an adorable white dress from Who What Wear for Target.

I admit to feeling a bit sassy on Monday.  The top is from Hope Avenue, the floral pants are from Gap Outlet and the necklace is Banana Republic Outlet.

Casual Friday found me in a check button down with a half-front tuck from Target and jeans from Old Navy.

Finally, on Saturday I went to lunch with my sisters and my dad.  It was blazing hot and I wanted to stay cool so I wore this amazing drapey maxi which I purchased from a local boutique called Koodeker and slip-ons from  the Gap Outlet.

Have a great week, Lovelies!  And remember to feel beautiful!




Studio 5: Ferns in Decor

Recently, I had the opportunity to film a segment for a local TV Show, Studio 5.
I talked about botanical prints and their recent resurgence in popularity.  In particular, I shared about Ferns and some inexpensive (virtually free) ways to incorporate them into your décor.

I shared some great freebie prints (you can find the links on the Studio 5 website) as well as a couple of easy DIY options.

Check out the video here.

This is a screenshot from the segment...loving our facial expressions. ;-)

Follow the link to watch the segment and then checkout those freebie prints that are now hanging in my master bath.  Below  ⇩⇩⇩⇩⇩

Have a great day, Lovelies!




Perennials (I'm not talking about plants)

I read a very interesting article the other day which was published in The Telegraph about how women in their 40's and 50's are considered the new "ageless generation".

Now, if you read my previous post, you'll know that turning 45 this past month has really put a spin on my world.  In a good way.  I am using this birthday to catapult me toward some serious changes.  (Which I promise to discuss in future posts).

And for any of you who are at a similar stage in life, I'm sure you've thought many times about the fact that mentally, you don't feel as old as your driver's license says you are.

In my case, I feel exactly like I did in my 20's.  Thank heavens I have a bit more experience and expertise under my belt now, but otherwise, my thought processes and feelings are very much the same.  I certainly don't feel "middle aged" and as this article pointed out, "middle aged" really isn't considered a thing anymore.

The article discussed the fact that women in their 40's and 50's don't subscribe to the types of changes that they did 20 or so years ago.  For instance, it mentioned the fact that it is very difficult to tell a woman's age if she is seen from behind because women across various age ranges dress very much the same as one another.

I know this is true of me.  I even borrow my 14-year-old daughter's clothes.  (And she, of course, borrows mine).  I mentioned in a post on Instagram the other day that I have a very youthful fashion aesthetic, and I don't think that is a bad thing.  I truly don't believe that there is a certain way that a woman is supposed to dress once she hits a certain age.

The article didn't just touch on fashion, however, it also mentioned hairstyles (women don't cut their hair short once they reach their 40's and 50's as often as they once did), music, and TV shows etc.

It also mentioned the fact that because women in this age group are feeling as young and vibrant as ever, many are pursuing goals and making life changes that they wouldn't have dreamed of when younger.  THIS IS EXACTLY HOW I FEEL!!

The term that has been coined to describe this no-age mindset is Perennials.  Because, according to the article "Perennials are ever-blooming, relevant people of all ages who know what's happening in the world, stay current with technology and have friends of all ages.  We get involved, stay curious, mentor others, and are passionate, compassionate, creative, confident, collaborative, global-minded risk takers."

I honestly feel that age is just a number.  I no longer define myself by my age.  In fact, I am proud of where I am as a 40-something. I am really excited to see where I go from here.

I hope you'll join me as I share my big changes this year!