Finding Myself at 50

findingmyself1I’m a wife and mom who is finding myself at 50. No, I’m not “finding myself” like they were “finding themselves” in the 1960’s!  I guess it’s more appropriate to say that I’m figuring out who I am at 50 years old, finding my style now that my body is changing along with the fact that in this new decade though I don’t have to feel more “mature,” I do have to dress more maturely.  I’m discovering  that I’m interested in new and different things today versus ten years ago, and I’m wondering what’s in store for the next 50.   It’s an exciting time, but it’s a challenging and sometimes scary time, too.

The blog is my way of journaling what my goals are, what I like, what I’m interested

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What I Learned From Three Years in Direct Sales–The Pros…The Cons

The Pros

I sold Stella & Dot jewelry and accessories for 3 years and I wrote about why I loved being a Stella & Dot Stylist here.

Being able to sample them at a discount or get them free was fun.

As a walking billboard for my products. I loved getting complements and “selling” my jewelry and accessories while holding a casual conversation.

Wearing my accessories made me feel good. I enjoyed planning my outfits around my accessories and it forced me to take more time to put myself together before I walked out the door, knowing that I had a great opportunity to sell on the go.

Many of the samples are my favorite pieces. I love to mix and match them with my non-Stella & Dot accessories.

The Cons —

The cons for me really weren’t cons so much as they were realizations about what sales entails and what I found less enjoyable — Booking, Booking parities from parties, constant revolving door of contacts.

Booking and selling at trunk shows can be stressful. The main source of income for a direct seller is in the “party.”

Customers would try on my samples which were also the samples that I wore each day, so I had to get beyond the idea that other people were trying on my things.

It’s not always the win-win senario for you and your hostess.Your audience will either love what you’ve got and buy, which benefits you in commissions and in your points toward earning free accessories for you and for your hostess. Your audience will also hopefully not only become customers but will host their own shows, thus inviting their friends to their own party and the cycle continue. or they won’t; leaving you and your hostess without any free and discounted merchandise due to lack of sales.

Once I contacted everyone on my Who Do You Know List (a list of people who you know from all of your different circles), to interest them in doing a show with me, it became harder to meet new people to do shows for, so I’d go to vendor and networking events to hopefully meet new potential customers there.

While I loved meeting new potential clients at those networking functions, vendor events have admission fees ranging from free to upwards of $125 or more. While it was tax deductible, I did have to be careful to weigh the cost vs. the return on investment for these functions.

The set-up for these events was always a bear for me. There were so many little things to bring, in addition to the jewelry and accessories–the table — a heavy foldable 4-6ft table, table cloth, stands to hold up signage and display trays,neck busts to display the necklaces on, bracelet bars, bag stands to hold up the totes and handbags, banners, mirrors other doodads to make my table stand out and look pretty.

Wear and Tear  on My GPS and I —

There’s also the getting lost factor. The GPS is my best friend. Finding the hostesses homes or the locations of the vendor shows and allowing for enough time to potentially get lost, get on the right track and arrive with plenty of time to set up and put a smile on your face before the guests arrive. It seemed that no matter how much time I left to get to my destination it wasn’t enough. I was always rushing to get everything set up before the doors opened for business.

Would I do it again?

I am not sure. I’m leaning toward no, though. While I love how DS gives women (and some men, too) a chance to start a small business literally right out of the box — you buy your sample kit and your catalogs and you’re ready to go — it’s difficult to keep on finding new customers. Creating a team is the way to earn the most income from a

Am I sorry I did it?

No, not at all! I wanted to try something new, I was very practical about it and I knew the risks.   I definitely made sales, I learned something new, I was able to purchase my samples at a discount and even better, earned some of my favorite jewelry, accessories and bags free.

What about you? Have you been in

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Tuesday Shoesday Review Felicia by Sam Edelman

Sam Edelman - Felicia (Saddle) Women's Flat Shoes

Today we are reviewing the Sam Edelman Felicia for today’s Tuesday Shoesday. I’d been on the hunt for a shoe in a saddle color when I stumbled upon the Felicia and I’m so pleased with my find.

Here’s what I love about this ballet flat:

  • The variety of colors! It’s available in several colorways
  • It’s versatile — wear it dressed up or dressed down
  • It’s available in Narrow, Medium, and Wide Widths
  • It’s available in a variety of uppers including, Leather, Suede, and Iridescent Dupione Silk

The cons about the Felicia Flat are:

  • Not all sizes and widths are available in all colorways
  • Thin padding and no arch support

Despite my somewhat fallen arches, I can still wear the shoes despite the lack of arch support for long periods of time, however, I would not wear this shoe if I was planning on doing a lot of walking or standing at one time.

All told, however, I would definitely recommend this ballet flat. It’s stylish, cute and flattering. I can easily see wearing the leather and suede flats through the rest of the Summer, into Fall and wearing it again in the Spring, in my neck of the woods.


Which colors would you choose? I want them all!

See the Sam Edelman Collection at,

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Why I Love Being a Stella & Dot Stylist (and you just might, too!)

Stella & Dot image with laptopI have been a Stylist with Stella & Dot for over two years; here’s why I love what I do. Not only do I get to sample beautiful and trendy jewelry and accessories each season, as a Stylist, another fun part of my job is showing off my accessories at trunk shows, as well!  Imagine having a job that involves gathering friends together to socialize and play with accessories!!  Am I in the happiness business, or what?

If you are unfamiliar with Stella & Dot, we are a boutique-style accessory company selling jewelry and accessories, including bags and totes, scarves, tunics, sarongs and the list of fabulous offerings seems to grow with each new season, much to my delight!  This Spring we added beautiful sunglasses to the mix!

Stella & Dot was founded by our Chief Executive Officer, Jessica Herrin, and our Chief Creative Officer Blythe Harris.  Together, they have created a company that empowers women here in the US, Canada, the UK and France to become business owners on our own terms, giving us the flexibility to work when we want to; whether that means part-time, as a side gig or on a full-time basis.  What else do I like about being a stylist?  The list is too long to fit here in this blog post, but here are the main reasons:

    • I typically earn free samples, or I can purchase them for a pretty nominal fee.
    • I enjoyed the camaraderie with the other stylists on my team both locally and throughout the country and the friendships I have made with my customers. 
    • We are also a brand that is as sought out by celebrities and the media as it is by women like you and me.
    • Our fabulous versatile pieces (close to 2/3 of the collection can be worn multiple ways) makes styling oneself as easy as it is fun.

Our products are lead and nickel safe and, believe it or not; half the line is under $50!  Hostesses earn credit for free and half-off on accessories of their choice in appreciation for hosting and guests also can take advantage of “trunk show exclusives” at half the original price when they attend a trunk show/styling session.

Also, we’re very much a social selling company meaning that you can go to my site and purchase items directly, just like you would on any other retailer’s website, without having a styling session. Or you have the option of having a virtual styling session by inviting your friends to a styling event that is done interactively online via Facebook in real time.

I’ve loved being my own boss. Networking events keep me on my toes and continually challenge me to get myself out and meeting new people and new potential customers.  I’ve met some wonderful women through this journey and continue to do so.

We often talk about a tribe of women to support one another.  I have definitely felt that with Stella & Dot.

Had you told me three years ago that I would become a Stylist with a direct sales company, I would have laughed at the notion.  However, Stella & Dot is not your stereotypical direct sales company a la Tupperware, from the 1950’s, though.  Jessica Herrin, has a strong tech background and her vision for Stella & Dot was of social selling via our websites and social media and of course our personal and group styling sessions.

If you are looking for something to enrich your life, to perk up an outfit or two, or to feel more connected to your community, I highly recommend taking this journey.  To learn more about Stella & Dot, you can visit my website here.  If you have questions about our accessories, hosting a trunk show (we also refer to them as styling sessions) or learning more about what I do as a Stylist, feel free to reach out to me at

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How to Hide Flabby Arms


Flabby arms are the bane of most women’s existence in our 50’s. All of a sudden those lovely short sleeve tops and dresses just don’t look as good as they used to.

Not long after I turned 50 I discovered, quite by surprise, that I too had flabby arms. When did that happen?  Perhaps I was in denial, but it wasn’t until I saw photos of myself from a special occasion where I proudly wore a beautiful midnight blue cap-sleeve designer dress that I found for a steal at Nordstrom (it was a Tadashi Shogi) that I came to this realization, though.  I was so excited to wear that dress.  In the store mirror and in the full-length mirror at home, I felt great in it!  I loved the cute cap sleeve and thought that it was very flattering.  I was horrified when the pictures came back though when I realized how unflattering those cap sleeves were on my now flabby arms. What a rude awakening, at least to me!  Others said I was being way too hard on myself and maybe I was, but I was so surprised by the what I saw.  From that point on, figuring out how to hide my upper arms was my number one priority.

Recently, as I was searching for other options for hiding flabby arms and I was delighted to find some great tips from Style Expert Deborah Boland from Fabulous After 40.  

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Sometimes You Fall Before You Fly

Sometimes you fall before you fly.

In my case I had to

Stumble in the dark,

Fall on my face

And get up again…

Only to walk into the wall.

sometimes you have to fall before you fly

I found this quote on facebook the other day and boy did it resonate with me.  While I don’t think anyone can say they haven’t felt this way at some point today, yesterday, last week, last month, etc.,  I truly believe that some of us find ourselves feeling this way more often than others and perhaps with greater intensity.  I know that I am one of those people.

Our lives are filled with battles won and battles lost.  Good times, bad times, positive lessons learned that propel us forward and negative lessons learned that can sometimes still hold us back, even in the best of times, until we find a way to move forward again.

I find myself stumbling in the dark once again now that my daughter is in high school and continues to grow more and more independent.  Just as I have many times before, I’m back to focusing on who I am, where I want to go and who I will be when she is, for the most part, independent of me.  We’re now thinking ahead to her last two years of  high school, PSATs, SATS, college applications, essays, campus tours and ultimately going to the school of her choice.  I’m thinking ahead to the day we drop her off to begin her freshman year, her college graduation, her first job right out of school, and her eventual move out of our home to her own home, as she officially begins her own adult life.  It’s less than a decade away and it’s frightening to begin this journey that all at once feels familiar, scary and new at the same time.

Though it sounds cliché, being my daughter’s mom has been my most satisfying work ever and the most educational for me.  No, it’s not always been the most exciting of jobs with a job description that has included in random order:

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Beverly Feldman Shoes Love

My Beverly Feldman Shoes

On my birthday, last month, my family and I decided to go to one of our favorite areas to celebrate — Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.  After a lovely brunch at a French restaurant called Bastille we went to the Old Town Boutique District, which I’d read about, but had never been to before.  My daughter was pretty excited to check out this fun shopping area too;  my husband, I can safely say, was not, but he was such a love to indulge me on “my day.”

One of the stores I’d read about in the Boutique District and wanted very much to take a peek in was Periwinkle, a sweet boutique that is filled with beautiful designer clothing, shoes and accessories.  As luck would have it,  a little chalk board at the door just happened to advertise that they were having a sale and I personally lucked out when this pair of Beverly Feldman T-Strap Sara Bis Pumps was not only a sale item, but happened to fit!

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What to Wear with Yellow Accessories

I was inspired by my new Citrine yellow Norah Stella & Dot earrings and black and white polka dot sweater to put together an outfit which I wore the other day.  I loved it so much, I decided to create the collection below on the right, which has very similar elements in it.  I’m loving the 2014 Stella & Dot Collection of jewelry, handbags, and accessories.  This is the first season change that I’ve been through since I started my Stella & Dot business.  From what I keep reading and hearing from other Stylists, the accessories and the jewelry get better and better with each season and I can see that, as well.     I also wanted to illustrate that these accessories can be worn now — adding just the right amount of warmth and sunshine to my winter outfit on the right and in the Spring and Summer as illustrated on the left.

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Random Thought for the Day: The Sunroom

Tropical Porch Courtesy of Houzz [dot] com


Wouldn’t it be great if we could redefine what a Sunroom is?  Here’s what I’m thinking I’d like the Sunroom to be.  I’d love to have a year round room in my house that would be all windows — even the ceiling would be made of glass.  No breaking of the glass ceiling  here–this one would withstand the elements!  The daily temperature in my sunroom would be a steady cool temperature, say 68 degrees, with a gentle natural breeze that

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Friday Finds: Versatile Statement Necklaces

It seems like statement necklaces have been all over the fashion pages for the last few months and I have to say I’m smitten.  It’s funny for me to write that, because up until a few months ago, I rarely wore them.  My “go to” jewelry has always been my engagement ring and my wedding band, which I never take off and earrings.

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