Saturday, 17 January 2015

It's Never Black and White

 Thank you for all the lovely comments you have been leaving on my blog.  I haven't gotten myself back fully in form yet, though I hope to be back responding to your comments soon.  I talk to you in my head, does that count?

I have been spending much of this week resting in bed and shlumphing about in pyjamas drinking tea and feeling that annoying combination of exhausted restlessness. Each time I exerted myself for a trip to the store or the cafe or a birthday dinner at the pub, I had to retreat to bed for a couple of days to recover.
I took an hour to peruse the thrift shop this week which contributed to wearing me out though did result in some new to me pieces I am thrilled with.  The price is that I am too exhausted to shower, dress, cook or do anything creative the next day.  Because Mum's birthday was this week and I anticipated a dinner out with my parents and son, I have tried to be good and not do too much so I am fit to go out.  I get so frustrated with my limits and when I am feeling this way this is usually the moment someone chooses to tell me how much they would love a life of leisure like mine and just a moment to rest.  All I can say is, be careful what you wish for.

One of my happiest thrifting finds has been a very soft cream coloured sweater which I now want to wear with everything.  It is perfect with jeans and bare feet and with a velvety skirt.

Here is an outfit for dinner at an haute pub, not black and white, but brown and cream.  Though this  sweater  can tend to make me look smaller of boob and larger of waist,  sometimes I just don't care.  I have a compact sort of body shape which is really only flattered by very form fitting outfits and I don't dress that way too often.  Look I went to all the trouble of some eye makeup!  I don't bother with mascara because all it takes is a very light swipe of grey or taupe around my eyes to make them look quite made up.

I attempted some close up photos to show off the details but with only moderate success.  The boots are suede, the skirt is velour ( I think the difference between velvet and velour is subtle but that if it has some stretch it is velour) and has both embroidery and lace. I do have a lovely scarf that matches these boots but I decided not to be so matchy and to use the little splash of coral pink.  (I deliberately did not say 'pop of pink' because I loathe that word 'pop' as used to excess when referring to a small addition of colour)

This outfit makes me happy.  I believe in being happy, in making my own happiness so I don't like to dwell on my frustrations but for the sake of a little balance, a moan now and then and some sympathy from someone who understands never seems to hurt.  So since I am in a moaning mood, let me tell you about my new neighbour.  We share a wall, the wall in the living room and it seems to have average sound proofing.  With the previous tenant I didn't hear much, but male voices carried through more effectively, usually sounding like a baritone mumble.  The new neighbour is a single woman, roughly my own age, with apparent aspirations of a singing career.  When she moved in she informed me that she took lessons and soon enough I heard her.  I heard her every day for a couple of hours a day, lessons and practices.  She cannot sing.  Tone deaf, flat and off key are the words that come to mind, and while I think everyone has the right to sing to her heart's content daily, this is a couple of hours a day with a microphone.

I got up the courage to knock on her door and request that she practice in a different room, one without a shared wall.  She informed me she was just making that very change but that her lessons would be in the living room so I was going to hear her on that one day a week.  I brought her a bottle of wine to welcome her to the building, but she did not invite me in.  We had a bit of a friendly chat in the doorway and I was able to slip in my request about the singing in a casual and non-critical way.  So now I only have two hours a week where I must listen to her butchering songs by Queen or Dusty Springfield, microphone, electronic music with thumping base and off key warbling still all included.  Her online singing teacher either has great confidence in his ability to teach or he is just happy to take her money.  I suppose my only potential for revenge is to make her a character in my novel.

Speaking of which, I will soon get more chapters posted.  I am in the middle of a protracted and procrastinating switch to a new computer so essentially working from two different machines.  Every time I blog I am on the new one and my writing files are not here yet.   I have had a long dry spell but am beginning to feel the urge to get back to my fiction writing.


  1. Bahahaha, singing neighbor is my specialty! When I lived in a dorm there were all kinds of noises, but the best ones were the loud crappy music and people screaming to the loud crappy music. I was so happy to move out! But a few years passed and now at my new home, I can hear every freaking summer, my neighbor screaming to Adele's songs through the window...It's horrifying! But you're such a good lady, bringing wine and everything, I would have just brought a bat and smacked her in the face!!!
    Anyways, about the exhaustion, I know what you mean. When I got that food poisoning, I felt my body was as heavy as iron and couldn't even move my ass from one couch to the other. It's a pain to feel so exhausted, all you can do is make the best out of it and do all kinds of stuff while resting. Maybe you can get addicted to a cool tv series, I'm currently obsessed over "Peaky Blinders". Great British gangster show! ^_^

  2. I love how the pink scarf really adds something to the cream/brown outfit - pop, splash, burst, surge, blast of colour, whatever we call it!
    Now the singing lady. I feel for her. She wants to sing, and it's great that she's having a go, whether she's dreadful at it or not. Since she has only just moved in, she doesn't know you spend a lot of time in your flat, she's moved her practice to another room, and for 2 hours a week, you could play some music of your own, or wear headphones, and blot out the sound of her singing. I appreciate that intrusive noise from a neighbour is annoying, but it's predictable, finite noise in this case, at the same time each week, and therefore you could work around it. I can think of (and have experienced) far, far worse noise from neighbours, so I suppose this doesn't seem too bad at all. Ahh, give her a kind-hearted, if amused, break - we can't all be good at the things we love to do!
    Hope your writing goes well, Shawna. xxxx

    1. I feel for her too. She has unachievable goals in mind. She has the aspirations of being an accomplished singer when the closest she will get to holding a key is to insert one into the lock of a door. Still, I think Shawna tackled the problem very tactfully. Now it's only two hours a week that her ears are treated to the harsh, disharmony of a cacophonous and grating dissonance that passes loosely as music.

      I also feel for her teacher.

  3. Well I think you handled the problem very tactfully. Sometimes the kids get me playing Singstar on the Playstation, when that happens I'm pretty sure my neighbours wish I'd retire to another suburb … not just another room ;0)

  4. Isn't it fascinating how cream looks so great on you, and washes me out completely. But white on the other hand suits me, as well as black.
    I feel for you with the singing butcher next door! I love to sing, and I teach singing but never with a microphone, so hopefully the neighbours aren't too traumatised!
    Totally get the exhaustion thing, as you know, although mine tends to be unfocused wiredness, which then leads to exhaustion!
    Your cream sweater is so lovely and cuddly. Hopefully it will cuddle some energy into you from me. Hugs, Jazzy Jack

  5. Wuaoooo I love your blog I hope you will like mine

  6. You look very cozy in that creamy dreamy sweater. I really love the skirt especially. You do a lot better than me in the dressing up category.

    I don't even share a wall with neighbors but I can hear the elderly couple next door inside their house sometimes fighting. It's sad to think a couple in their 70's could be so darn miserable with each other. Maybe you could turn up some Adele when your neighbor starts crooning to drowned her out.

  7. Nice sweater. It's good when an outfit makes us happy. And it's okay to talk to people in our heads as long as they don't start arguing... :-)

  8. that cosy sweater! want to crawl in. flattering neckline!
    chic with some chocolate and a berry :-) in germany garments like your skirt were called "boutique style" - velvet, satin, lace, embroidery all in one item, in mostly muted colors. the difference between velvet and velour is how long the "hair" is. velvet can be stretchy too.
    unpleasant neighbor. you should arrange a jour fixe at your fav café for that 2h a week....
    thank you for your lovely comment on the primroses!

  9. I like the way you write and please don't procastrinate and write more!This singing lady surely makes for a great character!I wish you get much better soon and I like your outfit very much today,esp the long skirt .Have a nice week!

  10. Lovely outfit, Shawna - elegant and yet soft and comfy at the same time, and I like that you wore a scarf of a different tone. The skirt seems artistic, with plenty of great details.

    I feel for everyone, for her and for you. I do believe in finding win-win solutions in delicate situations like this one. On a positive side, you both share one thing (other than the wall) - you both go for your dreams! xxxxx

  11. I like the splash of coral pink, it suits you. Brave you for confronting the new neighbour. I would probably play music to drown her out. Keep well and warm Shawna.

  12. You might see your neighbor on TV one day lol as she thinks she is the next Susan Boyle. Hope you feel much better soon. Love your brown boots. xo

  13. Love the "smatter" of pink ; P

    I hated when I lived in shared houses that were turned into apartments. We could hear everything. I appreciate the quite solitude of having a house now.


  14. Also thanks for putting up the Blogger Meet-up button up!

  15. 1. My sympathies to you for the pain of the singing neighbor!!! LOL!!!
    2. Talking to us in your head is an acceptable response but as Ally says ... just don't let us argue in there.
    3. LOVE your find ... it is absolutely gorgeous and I love brown and cream as much as I love black and white.
    4. The addition of the pink scarf is gorgeous!!!
    5. Can't wait to see some more of your chapters.
    6. Praying for your strength to return!!!

  16. I like the sweater, very good find and versatile
    AH! Neighbors, you never know what type of people you will get
    I have my stories too! I hope all will be well with her

    Take care



I love visitors and I love comments. I will try my best to respond to everyone! Thanks for stopping by.