Friday, December 24, 2010


I've been emailing my new friend Lisa. She was telling me about this rude man she encountered in a store in the Caribbean. I think I ran into this man's family member at the San Francisco Airport. Lisa and I were emailing about how to address and teach men etiquette - elegance. She even named it manettiquette.

So, she got me thinking about how to blog so men would be interested. There have been elegant men throughout history - Cary Grant for example and there are men that strive to achieve a persona like Mr. Grant. So, here we go.

It is obvious that chivalry is still alive, but it is taking a beating daily. The men that wish to achieve better are trying and there are websites to help them. Currently, I will keep my attention to womens' elegance. But we do need to address men and who to deal with 'thuggy' men.

The thing that Lisa and I have in common with our run-in's is that we didn't take it. We weren't victims to a verbal attack or their bulling behavior.

If Lisa wants she can add to the post, I will use my experience as the bases for this post.

As women we have a lot of power that we never use. Most men do like to be helpful, to protect, and be noticed for their effort.

When a man holds the door, he is not trying to subjugate you, he is being nice. Thank him.

When a man behaves badly, call him out.

In my situation this guy came thru the first class line into the TSA screening area. I had two women in front of me that really had no idea how to move thru the line in a timely fashion. I was annoyed but there wasn't anything I could do. The dude behind me thought he was better, faster, smarter then us women. He took his bag and plastic bin and walked to the front of the line to the xray machine - only to realize that there was no room for his stuff. So, he started walking back the line looking for an open space to put his stuff so he could get thru the line quicker. Well, he found 2 inched between myself and the lady in front of me. He literally tried to push my stuff back.

Now, this is where the elegant women must take control. I was being mistreated and had to defend myself. How I defended myself is important. I looked at that creature and said "Is there a problem?" I didn't yell or even raise my voice. The dude didn't like my tone - oh well. He mouthed off to me. Don't remember totally his comment. But, again I was being verbally assaulted. Again, defending myself with out raising my voice I said "Why are mouthing off to me you cut the line." He continued to say he wasn't saying anything to me in a tone that I wasn't using, which wasn't true. I say he as a moron at this point, and probably a women hater. So I just said to him "just drop it, just drop it". He was in the wrong even though he'll never figure that out. But my reaction to him 1. brought attention to his behavior, which will not change his behavior 2. made me happy that I wasn't treated as a carpet.

Women have a lot of power to control. Jane Austin realized that in her books. If a man uses profanity around you, in your normal tone state "Please don't swear" he continue you walk away. That simple.

The men that want to treat women like property or disrespect them because they think women are second class citizens have a place in this world and I hope it is not within 10 feet of myself.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


That was my first response when I heard the news story.

Not only will your hair have an effect on your day and how you feel, but so will your underwear. DUH - it's meant to make you feel pretty, even if no one see's it. Taking care of yourself is important. How are you making yourself feel? Well, silk vs. a cotton sails makes a huge difference.

Plus, to even call it underwear explains that the originator of the store is either a man or a women with a clue.

Quick primer - underwear is what was hanging on the laundry line at your grandmothers. I dont wear underwear - I wear lingerie.

Calling lingerie underware is like saying my Louboutin heals, shoes.

My Test

I am having to practice what I preach - kinda. I always try to look for the best in a situation. Well, I am trying, trying very hard and well, still trying.

I travel a bit for work and I am San Jose for a meeting at my office. It is nice that my boss has brought all the travelers' together for a meeting for team building. But they selected the hotel that we were to stay in. I am very sure they are unaware of the ick factor of this hotel.

I stayed here 3 months or so ago and it has gone down hill since then. It has been bought out from being a Holiday Inn to some unknown brand.

How bad can it really be Astor? Hum.... I only have one bar of soap - One. Not one bar for my hands and a bath gel for the shower, just one bar of soap for my hands and for the morning shower.

My garden view is - of a parking lot!!! Now, how do I say this without offending certain people in our country, but a car in my yard has never been considered art for a garden, in my view. I know if I say anything I will get the comment that I have a balcony that is what the garden view is. But that's not a view that is an amenity, kinda. Remember its a parking lot - I might end up with carbon monoxide poisoning.

The room does have coffee maker - not that the coffee is even drinkable, oh the Seattlites and their snobby coffee. I have no idea what brand it is but it tastes like color water.

I have yet to even discuss the cleanliness of the room. HUM, when was it vacuumed. The tiles in the bathroom and the entrance way when was the last time they saw anything more abrasive then the bottom of a shoe. My white socks I am afraid will never be white again even with two washes in bleach.

My co-worker, he does have a view of the center courtyard. That is good especially since it is his first trip to San Jose.

I will not be staying at this hotel - if I ever have a choice in the matter. But for now I have to "endure" this hotel. A one star is just to nice to give this hotel. To place a complaint with this hotel will be useless. They obviously dont care for the guests only the money that they bring in. You know this is Silicon valley, I wouldn't have expect a trashy hotel in this area - but then again Silicon valley maybe everyone is just telecommuting and doing

And to think the last hotel I was in was in Las Vegas at the Palazzo, yes it feels like from heaven to ($##.

Yes, I am tired so that will be a contributing factor to 'meanness". I had to turn the heat on and the noise and whining from the machine is the only thing louder and longer then my whining.

I have to go and get ready for the day because sitting here writing this, the smell of musty old carpet is getting to be to much.

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Enough is enough. This week has had to many errors in the news, by those who should know better.

Mrs. Edwards has passed, Prince Charles had his car attacked and most Christians believe this is the birth time of Jesus. What do the three of these news stories have in common? They show the lack of skill of the English language to those in the media. I am not a journalist, reporter or any such. I am only a blogger. My career depends on good communications - in fact most careers require good communication, but when your career is communications these errors are unacceptable.

We're talking about how to pluralize a word that ends in 's'.

The first, when written it is s' ie. Jesus' birth, Prince Charles' car, Elizabeth Edwards' funeral. Not," Jesuses", Prince "Charles's" or Mrs." Edwardss". Nor is it pronounced as the later. When you say Jesus' birth it is said Jesus birth. Prince Charles' car was attacked, stated as Prince Charles car was attacked. What is really unbelievable is that spell check knows that Jesuses is not the correct plural, so how are these reporters able to get copy out with that error?

I have seen this grammatical error in magazines also such as Architectural Digest (another reason I am not renewing my subscription).

How is it 1. that the writers are not schooled properly 2. where are the proofreaders?

My other huge issue with grammar is co-conspirator. Really?! Its takes two to conspire there is no co anything. You are just conspiring.

English is a living language, that doesn't mean you can make up your own rules and still look educated.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Money doesn't make you better

Another story from Vegas.

I usually get a sedan to take me to and from my hotel when I go to Vegas. This company has the best drivers, very nice, very professional and they actually are the least expensive.

This driver was exceptionally fun. He talked to us about some of the celebrities he had driven. I was surprised by some of his comments of who is cool and who isn't.

But one thing is for sure, just because you are paying someone for a service doesn't mean you can treat them as a lesser human being. In fact, just because you have money doesn't mean you are a better human then others with less money. At times I find it inversely proportional, the more money the sadder, less useful and less productive a human they are.

Money really seems to taint the thinking of some people and that is sad. If money has tainted you into thinking you are better then others, then there really is something so sad with you, something so lacking in your life.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Vegas and Frustration

I had a very interesting experience in La Perla in Las Vegas.

I had been looking for a bra set, wearing beautiful lingerie can make you feel wonderful and so feminine.

My experience at the sales counter started as far from wonderful as possible.

I didn't know what was going on, but when I was done selecting my lingerie, I went to pay only to find a women so totally frustrated she was no longer herself. She had turned into a diva. She was so mad because her gift was not exchangeable in the Las Vegas store. Something that corporate headquarters should fix. She was so frustrated which then fell onto everyone around her. The poor sales clerks were doing what they could which was not acceptable to this women. To top it off here I come into the picture. The sales protocol was to take care of the first customer. Since I was in the store before this women, I was to be taken care of before her. Well this just made her so incensed. She was fit to be tied.

The saleswomen apologized to me, I felt bad for her to deal with the frustrated women. Maybe she heard me say that to the saleswomen. I dont know what changed her attitude but she turned to me and apologized that this was not her normal behavior. I could tell she was simply frustrated. But what I was going to say to this women when I left was her diva behavior had soiled my experience.

Thankfully, this women saw she was acting beyond what she thought was good. She saw her bad behavior. We all need to remember that we also will get frustrated and will behave in a way beyond our character. It is what we do when we see ourselves and our bad, non-elegant behavior what we do with that. This women, as important as she is in her career, saw me as another human being, due the same respect she was demanding, and with grace fixed the situation.

To be honest when I heard her she was going to be an example on this blog as "what has our world come to", but she showed such grace and class, she hit this blog as an example of what happens to us all, we get caught up in the moment but how we handle our bad behavior, that makes elegant or average.

Las Vegas Strip

Yes, it has been a long time between posts. Please remember I have a new job and that will take my time.

Anyway I was in Las Vegas for business and Brooks came down for the week.

Boy do we have a lot to blog about our time on the strip. I am making sure to define that we were on the strip and this has nothing to do with Vegas natives. To be even more specific between THEhotel at Mandalay bay and the Palazzo.

There are just so many things to comment on, from the fake grass to the TSA agents that made it so easy for us to go thru security, to the sales snake at a store selling facial products ( oh yea he should get his own posting) , to the frustrated women at La Perla.

There will have to be multiple posts and I will need to bribe Brooks to post.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Well that explains it!

Wish I had taken a look at the magazine's name, all I know is it was October 2010. But they had an article that explains a lot. It was a survey and one of the questions was who is Emily Post. Thankfully most people didn't say the owner of a cereal company but more then 60% of "younger" readers 18-34 didn't know who she was.

That really explains a lot. I'm not saying that these readers don't have manners. If you need to write a thank you note, the internet is a great resource and if you type in manners into yahoo's search engine Miss Manners and Emily Post are on the first page. The question is, do you know when to write a thank you note?

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Do you really think you're more important then the person next to you?

You do - THEN STOP IT!
We are all important.
So, stop showing us your bad behavior.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Whose the bigger fool?

There is a new show on MSNBC. I fully intended to take a look at the Lawrence O'Donnell's new show. His first night he had the VP of the US as his guest. Well, I've changed my mind. Watching "Morning Joe" on Wednesday (which I've stopped watching as of the end of last week, check an up coming post for the reason) they showed a clip of Mr. O'Donnell's guest, Levi Johnson. Are you kidding me? This "serious" MSNBC show had Levi Johnson on the night after the VP? I didn't think you could fall, that far, that fast.

Most know Levi is running for mayor of Wasilla AK. Why he is running? Not sure anyone has really ascertained the reason. Levi has yet to finish high school, which I think, in this day and age the laws should be change to not only to age but high school / GED education requirements for public office. That aside...

Comparing Larry and Levi in a mental show down, Levi is woefully unarmed. There is no way this ever was going to be a fair fight. Gentleman engage in fair fights, Larry.
But for Mr. O'Donnell to sit back and let both barrels of his wit, worldliness, and education at Levi was crazy. It was like someone shooting fish in a barrel, where's the sport?

Morning Joe called it embarrassing, I agree just not with the person they were embarrassed for. I was embarrassed for a grown man feeling he had to show up a much younger man from a small town with out a complete formal education. I was also embarrassed for this grown man to even have invited this much younger, less worldly "boy" onto his program only to show us what we already knew.

So, I've learned Mr. O'Donnell doesn't fight fair. Mr. O'Donnell did you pull little girls pig tails when you were in grade school? Did you hit kids with glasses? Why not pick on someone your own mental size? I would hate to think how else he doesn't play fair, or maybe that is just the DC way?

My question, who is the bigger fool? The fool, or the man who show us how much a fool the fool is

Monday, September 27, 2010

Finding the Time

It's very hard to find the time. The time to do what we like vs. what we have to take care.

Sometimes what we have to take care of is ourselves. I would love to post more, but my life has become so crazy that my body has started to react. I need rest and decompression time. Writing is one way to relax, but being ill takes all of your time. Once you have a diagnosis you then can move forward and take steps to mitigate what might be causing the problems / pain.

I have a list of postings, I will take my time and get them posted as long as I have the strength.

The most distressing aspect is trying to stay elegant and maintain dignity, it can be done, but then there are times that the best way to express elegance is to admit this is what it is and what it will be. I do not need makeup to be elegant, but I do need to be kind, just because I am sick and in pain doesn't mean I have to bring those around me down.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Public Transportation

Is exactly what the name implies PUBLIC. This is not your own private world. The more I travel and the more I take cities public transportation the more I am noticing the lack of courtesy from other riders. The car in which are riding does not have your name on it, for if it did you would not be taking public transportation, hence you really could do as you wish.

We all hear your phone conversation. I am still amazed at the amount of phone calls placed and taken that are of a personal nature. Not "hey I"m running late I'll be in in 30 minutes" but at time full fledged fights on the phone. What also amazes me in the era of texting is that people arn't texting while on public transport. That way you can say all you need and have complete privacy.

I was in Portland OR last month. I so wanted to laugh (I think laughter was the sensation I had) but there was this women that called her friend to tell her about her first day at work. Ok but you couldn't wait until you got home? But it was what was next that I was astounded by, seems this women just got out of jail after 18 months for fraud. Now the would MAX car knows it also. Oh this MAX ride was like that. The women just out of jail told us all about the halfway house she was staying out and the amount of time her accomplices were servering. But that was only the start of all the personal things I was to hear that day. Next, another lady called her hairdresser talked 10 minutes about how horrible her sons hair was and all the gossip that would come along with a typical visit to the salon.This is happening at one end of the car, at the other end we have a couple have a very loud fight. I was very happy to get to the airport. In Seattle, the women across the isle from me on light rail picked up her ringing phone and announced "I'm not talking to you I'm mad at you" and she then proceeded to have a fighting conversation with her other on the phone.

Riding light rail I see all the time people totally unaware that others inhabit this earth - especially tourists. Tourists with kids are the worst. They seem to think that they are on vacation and since this isn't their city and there are no worries of running into people they know that could gossip about how horribly behaved their children are then let them run and run like wild animals. Running up and down the isles is not only unsafe for the children but its unsafe for my computer! The sudden stops and starts make the children moving projectiles into the closest object in the opposite motion.

Public lobbies are the same - they are there for all to use. Not for some to dominate with loud screaming conversation.

Again it all comes down to realizing your not the whole world to behaving with dignity and treat others with dignity. But its seems to be an order that is just to much.

Getting to and from public transportation is another issue. When using escalators, if your going to ride up, step the side. Others have places to go and they may be late. If there is no way to move to the side the DONT RIDE them up WALK if there is no one in front of you but a whole line behind you. If you cant walk up you should have taken the elevator. There is no reason for you to hold up a whole line of people behind you. Move with traffic.

There are others in the world and they have the same rights as you.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Learning from VP Biden

I doubt anyone would ever call VP Biden elegant. Why? Because he has impulse control problem to say the least. To make the comments he did to the custard shop owner (and the open mike comment after health care passed and ....)

He shows his ego, and lack of concern for others. He also demonstrates he doesn't understand there is a professional time and a personal time. What is scary is that he probably doesn't care what people thinking of him and as a person "serving the public" to not care how people perceive him and not care if he offends people shows his personality.

Elegance is to live your life - Your life. Not to tell other how to live theirs.

That shop owner has ever right to think his taxes are to high and there is the VP of the US in front of you. Well why not tell him your thoughts? As the VP of the US your comments mean something. To denigrate a citizen because he didn't agree with you is so unprofessional. And to not apologize. This man just gave him a commodity, the VP did say thank you, but when that owner made his comment, which he has the right to do, the VP could have easily replied, "That's an issue bigger then us here and now" Simple! No one offended, and no sound bites. But Mr. Biden shows he really thinks much to much of himself. He took that man's comment as a personal offense. The VP was not in a bar with friends he was representing the US. He showed he has little respect for himself or the office he holds..

As the VP he really has little power or little control over taxes and we all know it. But what he does have control over, he refuses to exercise that power. The power to control you tongue, the power to make others feel good.

We can learn from examples - even bad examples.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Adios, Architectural Digest

I have been a subscriber to AD for a long time. AD and Town and Country are the only magainzes I subscribe to.

In the last few years the articles have become less interesting and more pop culture. What really was the final straw for me were the celebrities adorning the front cover month after month after month and then using those covers to sell subscriptions you get a clear picture of their "vision".
Yet another magazine taking the easy way out. I dont care about those people. How about the architects that made the vision a reality, how much space in the article to the get? And truly do we have to have the celebrity in every shot. There were the yearly specials, the before and after and the spot light on architects and designers. But this magazine over the last year or so has turned into something more of an interior designers magazine. To find a floor plan printed in the magazine made you fell like you should go an by a lottery ticket because this was your lucky day. I use to love to sit and page thru the magazine and savory the images and articles. But AD is really no different then the other magazines on the stands. And when T&C has the same type of writing and articles that AD has then why have two of the same coming into the house? And with T&C at least I have fashion. But AD, T&C might not be to far behind you. Seems their new editor is a man - I will give him a few months to see his direction, but I am tired of men telling women what we should look like, what we should ware and what we should like. T&C had female editor with female sensibilities. But like I said I will reserve judgement, for a few months.

So I will not be renewing my subscription, no matter how many 'urgent" mailers I get. When AD gets back to Architecture and its design I happily subscribe again, but in our current environment were thinking is look down upon and everything must be light and candy-like not instructive, informative and useful it will be a long wait so I wont hold my breathe.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Sorry, Countess ...

I am not a regular watcher of any particular TV series. When I sit down to watch TV I look at my options and choice which is the most interesting. I then pick a second show which I will watch if the first show becomes boring or when the commerical comes on.

So, I missed The Real Housewives of NYC when Luann recorded her song. Before I get into that, sidebar, Housewives? Really none of these women are housewives and we all know it... anyway back to Luann.

She has this song "Money Can't Buy You Class". We all agree with that, but for some reason there are people out there that need to be reminded, it's not the shoes, the bag or the dress that make you 'classy'.

I take issue with Luann with a line in her song, "Elegance can be learned"? Sorry Luann elegance can not be learned. Manners can learned, style can be purchased. We all know these women that know every rule inside and out. They are flawlessly dressed and never say anything inappropriate. But no matter how hard they try elegance eludes them. They are walking versions of every book or magazine they have read in the last year. They are more "Stepford Wife" then real women.

Elegance can be developed, not learned. Just like a great pianist, when they were young they were developed, they had to have the skill, the ability prior to the skill being developed.

Elegance is very hard to define and just as hard to find. There are many women that are beautiful, rich, stylish and mannered that will never be elegant. They have to be told how to live their life. The are told what to wear, how to wear it, when to wear it. These women generally are very vocal that they have this information at their fingertips.

The next level of women have this innate knowledge of what is cool and what is 'now' and what they like. They know the rules but they also know themselves and are comfortable with themselves. They will do as they wish with out interfering with the rights of others.

Then there are women like Coco Chanel. She cause a revelation in fashion. You cant do that when you know and follow all the rules. She heard her voice and she followed it. She hurt people along the way, it happens, but elegance would keep us from striving to hurt people.

Style, Class, Elegance, Mannered are not interchangeable words. Elegance is the culmination of years of life, years of being stylish, classy and mannered. But elegance is more then beauty and manners, it takes intelligence and you cant teach intelligence.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Rant - Fox News and the Unemployed

Its been very hard for me since I was downsized and to hear these so called experts on Fox News business block declaring "Why would people want to find a job when the government keeps extending unemployment" in some states up to 99 weeks. I'll tell you something, most people that watch Fox are hard working people and you forgot that. Those people, myself included, want to work. We spend hours and hours looking for work to the point that some of us are now starting our own business and others going back to school. I am streaming angry at that comment on Fox as if all the unemployed are lazy and looking to get something free from the government.

Personally, I am highly skilled, but in this environment I am see jobs that only required a BA or BS now requiring a MS. Companies know that there are a lot of people looking. So they only want the best (understandably) but they are now requiring skills that they never before had and when things do get better these people that are in these jobs with these great skills and education will jump ship for better pay when things get better. These companies are looking for the best buy paying for mediocre. I've heard some jobs getting 700 applications. A collegue just posted on craigslist and he got 150 resumes the first day (Friday). This job was for an industrial drafter / designer. He got architects sending in resumes. He had 200 resumes by Monday. I talked with him and he said the reason he didn't call me about the job was he didn't want to insult me working at a job I did 10+ years ago. I said I need to work for my dignity and my sanity. Fox News doesn't get that. They think everyone is out to take it easy and get whatever they can for free.

When I posted on Facebook I was a little more colorful in my verbiage, maybe not elegant, but you know their comment showed a lack of intelligence and a lack of understanding. I still have a lot of fight in me, and when someone tries to say I am a leach on society that fight becomes pin point focused to defend my dignity. Some say "Why waste it on Fox?" Its not a waste, this is a way for me to feel like I am still contributing just not in the same way I was.

Way to go Fox News Business block - insult the unemployed that watch your show. Fair and balanced - not in that segment.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Ms. Dixie Carter

The world has lost an amazing women.

Ms. Carter had what we know as, style and poise and yet was sassy and very intelligent. She was the personification of elegance. Elegance is hard to define and hard to develop, but when we see it we know what "it" is.

Thankfully, I did get to meet Ms. Carter at a book signing. She was so generous with her time. There was a group of us girls that 'hung out' after our books were signed. She would joke with us and talk with us and when she was about to get ready to go she said "I have to give you girls a name ... The Loyal Girls" Since we stayed for almost the whole book signing.

It was such a memorable day. I forgot my camera, my loving husband went and purchase a disposable camera just for the event. Disposals at the time were rather expensive, it cost us what I made in one hour of work. But he thought it was important and money didn't matter. When I got up to talk to her I showed her my sapphire ring my husband got for me because he knew how much I liked the one she wore, it looked like the one she wore on Designing Women. She looked to my husband and said "What a great man". Then she told me her ring had been stolen. I love wearing that ring for the memories of when and why my husband got it for me and for that moment with Ms. Carter.

When I started to write my book and start this blog, Ms. Carter was foremost in my mind. I keep her book and the pictures taken at the book signing in my desk drawer. I was hoping to have gotten my book completed and dedicated and sent to her to thank her. As a young lady I knew that I wanted to grow into a women like Ms. Carter.

Her portrayal of Julia Sugerbaker was my 'hero' growing up. Sad to say I haven't seen anything she has done in the last 5 years. Thanks to on demand and DVD's I can rectify that problem.

As Julia Sugarbarker, I learned I could be successful, beautiful, loving and strong. You didn't have to choice one over the other. You could be it all. You could be kind to people but then when some one tried to take advantage of you you could take care of yourself being strong. I just loved it when she got to her limit she would let loose the best verbal lashing. I remember the one that dealt with AIDS and the "holier then thou" people. She brought that character back to reality pointing out that that womens behavior was no way Christ like and there is no room to make judgements on others, since we all sin.

The other tongue lashing Ms. Sugarbaker gave that still fits today and should replayed daily was when her design studio was to be featured in a magazine and they were taking pictures of all the women, but they wanted to "sex" them up. When Julia was told to straddle a chair and suck on pearls, the words of war came out. Being a professional women she didn't need to suck the pearls or sit in a chair in a way it was never designed for. Ms. Carter was the only person that could have pulled off Ms. Sugarbaker.

Looking around the women on TV now, it is a long hard look to find someone with even a gleam of what Ms. Carter had. The women we see now lack dignity and self possession. They do whatever they have to to get attention even if it makes them look like a fool or a street walker. Other women we see think its just perfect for them to treat those around them as nothing more then a commodity. They have no idea how to be kind. They have a whole wrong idea of what a Princess is. Ms. Carter knew what being a real royal was.

We have lost a great women. But her spirit will live in our memories and in our modern age we have the internet with all the pages of her.

We will miss you, greatly.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Exiting a Car

Its great fun to read Perez Hilton. Lately, there have been a few post of celebrities getting out of cars giving the pappo's a "great" shot. This is a really problem for a lot of celebrities. Let us learn from their mistakes.

Getting out of a car wearing a skirt / dress is different then when in jeans. I've seen posts telling women how to get out of a car. I am pretty sure no women needs to be told to duck when she is exiting and there is no "lead leg".

The whole issue is really your feet. Your feet should touch the ground at the same time. One item to note, its much easier to exit a car with leather seats then fabric.

The whole point after the door is opened for you or you open the door, turn you body in the seat toward you direction of travel. Keeping you knees together swing both legs out of the car and place both feet on the ground. Then everyone gets to check out your shoes! With both feet firmly on the ground and not in a puddle, take the hand, if one has been offered, if not push forward (this depends on you leg and butt strength) with the arms into a standing position.

Entering a car is about the same. Your butt is the first thing in the car onto the seat, knees together and draw the feet in to place on the floor board.

This is such a graceful way of entering and exiting a car and its a very beautiful dance. Your shoes and legs are then are on display and not your underwear.

Yes, this same 'dance' can be performed in and out of a limo. Just because you have more room to exit doesn't mean you need to use it.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Rant - Target (rather long post - very annoyed)

I used to love Target, but now not so much. I believe they are taking advantage of this recession.

When I first started shopping at Target in my small town it was a great alternative to Walmart (dont get me started on Walmart and how they are single handedly killing elegance for cheap and yes I mean cheap products and averageness). Target was modern, updated and may I say cool stuff for a decent price. They even were noted, years ago, to have a Polo shirt that lasted as well as ones costing 4x's as much.

But now they have lost that edge. Yes, they have new designers for clothing and house wares to keep that "coolness' factor. But walking thru the clothing section, the items look cheap! Badly made and wrinkled. Which shows they dont care they just want the money.

This might be just the Target's in my area but they are a mess. Shoes in the aisle's, shirts unfolded and thrown into a pile on the display table. That is just the beginning. Why does Target have that horrible throw back to K-mart 20 years ago with that "food court" at the entrance. Retailers know scents in the air have a very strong effect on sales. The only effect walking into Target gives me is with that odor is to "yack".

One of the prime ideas of elegance has nothing to do with money. Its has to deal with quality. The better the quality the less you need and the longer you can have an item. You buy a great coat made well cut in classic pattern you'll have it a long time. Target's fashion approach is cheap. That you'll buy accent pieces to update your wardrobe know full well that the items they are selling will not last more then one season. That is not eco-friendly for sure. What good is it to buy that cute dress that you can only wear one season, that costs you the same as a dress at the mall? Plus the cut of their designers is only for one body type.

Next all of the Target brand products. I will never buy Target brand products. They are so badly made to use them takes twice as much product then a national brand.

On top of that, the selection has fallen off to 3 competing brands. If you want something "out of the ordinary" forget it. I went looking for canning items - they dont exist at Target. Need rock salt for the ice maker you purchased at Target, you're out of luck. Then when looking for an item they do carry good luck, because I've been in B level targets that had empty shelves most of the time!

Dont bother complaining to Target corporate or even the store manager. They will defend their bad behavior. What else are we to expect? HUM - look into it. But then again why - people are in need of products that cost less. So they have them coming in why give quality?

Seems Target see's the recession as a way to cut quality, cut inventory and cut selection. As a consumer all I can do is cut Target out of my list of acceptable shopping stores.

I havn't sent foot in a Walmart for YEARS. Doing the same to Target isn't going to be a problem since I have local stores that have the same type of product at the same price in a cleaner environment.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

New Turn

O. K. this blog isn't going in the direction I really wanted it to go.

I wanted it to shine a light on what is elegant and what is not, how to add a bit of beauty into your everyday life with a touch of humor. I haven't achieved this. When I reread my blogs I really am missing the humor. Brooks adds humor, but not me. So I am very annoyed with my communication skills right now. Plus, I am thinking I should share more about my daily life. I will still comment on the crazy things I see and save some of the other points for the book I'm writing.

Actually, the book I was writing. I stopped writing it when I went back to proofread and I realized I was bored reading it and it sounds more like a nagging, stuffy auntie. The book is still sitting in the computer folder (aka. shelf). The blog is more of my testing grounds.

Writing a book has been a dream of mine but when I started the proofreading it was horrible. Who knew books were that hard to write - every author in the world I'm sure.

I don't make a living writing (don't quit your day job) but being laid off I now have all kinds of time. But the emotional dealings of being laid off has made me feel very inelegant. So writing the book has been put on hold.

When I was laid off I never realized how much of a toll it would take on my psyche. I really don't "feel" the book like I did. I now am much more focused on going to school for my MBA and starting a new business, plus looking for a full time job. Now more then ever I believe I need beauty and elegance in my life but even more then that is humor.

Well that is where I am. That is where this blog is. I am going to address more of my "fight" with these negative emotions that are stealing my elegance and humor.

Living Freely

Just heard a saying from a German:
"Once your reputation is ruined you can live quiet freely."

To bad you feel you have to ruin the reputation to live freely. Isn't living freely what most people are striving for?

Live freely, but remember everyone else also has the right to live freely.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Has Hollywood been playing a joke on us?

Its April fools day, I think Hollywood has been playing a joke on us for more then a year with the programming they have been handing out.

I remember reading years ago a quote from Coco Chanel saying something like "bad style is better then no style". I think Hollywood has taken this to the extreme.

The style network needs to remember "Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity."

Three paragraphs into this blog your probably saying "Astor, what's the point!"

The point is - this obsession people are having with Jersey. Jersey Shore and Jerseylicious to be specific.

It's like passing a car wreck on the interstate and the traffic slows down to take a look. These show are car wrecks. The people that are on these shows are car wrecks. I've never seen
an episode Jersey Shore, but you cant avoid "seeing" what the show is about from other "news" programs - but I remember going to the Jersey shore as a young girl and I remember those people and I really wondered what planet these fouls were from. Well now Hollywood has answered that. I have seen Jerseylicious, and yes I knew women like this when I lived (no not in Jersey) but on the East Coast.

Why is the lowest common denominator what people want to see? I bet its so they can say "My life isn't that bad" " I wouldn't ever act like that" " What is wrong with these people" (that is my common comment). But you have to wonder why these people are on these shows. Are they that desperate to be on TV and be a D-lister that they will be the court jester?

A few more quotes from Chanel for these girls to think about:

Fashion fades, only style remains the same.

Fashion is made to become unfashionable.

True generosity means accepting ingratitude.

Elegance is not the prerogative of those who have just escaped from adolescence, but of those who have already taken possession of their future.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Can Washington be elegant? Don't think so

Elegance is knowledge. Integrity is elegant.

Being able to discuss with others current events and allowing others to have their due opinions comes from knowledge.

Elegance would make a women aware of what is going on in the country and to make an opinion from experiences and logic. You can change your opinions over time due to your changing experiences and with new information that comes to light.

Each person has their own view of what is going on in Washington.

Currently, there has been a lot of discussion of the procedure of government. That is the most important part, showing what they are made of.

The founding fathers signed their names to a treasonous document. They knew by signing this document it could cost them their lives.

Now congress is willing to go with "deem and pass". They are unwilling to have a yes or no attached to their name. This is the most important vote that most of these "leaders" will ever take. All they could loss is their livelihood, unlike the founding fathers.

This blog is here to shine the light of elegance onto those in Washington. Their current behavior with the light of elegance on them shows them with: a greasy mullet, cigarette butt hanging out of their mouth, a belly shirt, hot pants, shoeless with mud between their toes, no matter how polished they try to look in front of the camera.

Their behavior strongly shows just how classless they are and their lack of integrity. They have spent this week to quote Ms. Pelosi "whipping" other members. "Whipping' is convincing them to see the bill the way Ms. Pelosi wants them. What kind of 'leaders' are they if they can be "whipped" my the speaker but unmoved by those who sent them and unwilling to make an actual stand pro or con.

All is see is a lack of integrity and it is ugly.

If you have an opinion stand with that opinion. If you are a leader - lead with the mind of those your leading.

Watch who you trust

Ms. Hunter,

All I can say is DUH!

Really?! Why did you pose that way? You trusted the photographer. Fine. But you haven't learned anything over the years. If you dont want a picture published then dont pose for the picture. "No photo control", but you do have control over yourself and your image.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Way to go Brooks

Brooks' post is a clear example of etiquette vs. elegance in our fast moving world.
These women were certainly old enough to know proper etiquette. I am positive they would tell you about wearing white gloves to church and never wearing white shoes after labor day and the importance of hand written thank-you cards, which fork or spoon to use, etc, etc, etc.. But these women couldn't figure out the simplest idea that there are people around you that have as much a right to a quiet conversation with their table mates as you have to answer you phone and talk with your friend.
Plus, what is it with people? They have a normal voice when talking to the person beside them but when they answer the phone their voice turns into an overactive 4 year old's? Etiquette is rules, elegance is behavior.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Cell phone conversation sharing?

So, here is my first post and this is a post that needs to be done, in my humble opinion. What I am about to write, is it ettiquete, common courtesy, or what-not?

Here is the scenario. Astor and I are at the local coffee/bake shop enjoying a non-typical morning. We got drinks and decided to sit down to partake of these refreshing drinks. Looking around, I notice other people also enjoying the bright and sunny morning that it was with their coffee, tea or other refreshing drink with nibbles of their choice. Here was a father and daughter chatting away, three older ladies talking away, catching up on their lives, soccor mom's and dad's with uniformed players preparing for sportsman competition. In the background, the cheery chatter of employee and patron interaction, the light sound of jazz playing for ambiance and sun shining brightly through windows clear of any and all dirt.

Then, it happens. A cell phone rings. Now, this is not the issue. Most people will answer these devices that many of us now consider as part of our daily lives in a timely manner. That is not the issue as this phone was answered. But, here this phone rings at the table with these older ladies and the conversation can be heard not only by our table, which was next to these ladies, but also beyond. Why? This conversation with the caller was placed on speaker phone. This conversation was carried on as if a fourth acquaintance had joined the table of these three ladies. Though, as some people in the mind would logically conclude that a call on speaker phone needs to have the volume of their voice raised, this added to the electronic voice emminating from this cherry red electronic doo-hicky.

Is this proper? Is this really needed for all to also have this disruption of cheery background noise of this establishement and music resonating from the speakers? No, I should say not. I am sure that many of the patrons did not enter for a pick-me-up and hope that they too can catch up on the latest gossip of these ladies. OMG!

Should this be a part of ettiquette for those that have cell phones to limit this type of conversation? I have my personal opinion about this and it say do not allow it. Though, as understanding what ettiquette is about, it is not about me or you. Rather that of a concern for others around you. I am sure these ladies are at this liquid and bake emporium to also partake in the ambiance that others also entered to do. Ladies, for your age, I wish you too had the refienement to have that respect for others.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Little Black Dress

The little black dress shows that the definition of what is stylish and elegant does change over time. Coco Chanel is to thank for this change. The little black dress, little black suit are staples in most women’s closets. The L.B.D. has caused some issues in finishing off the look, specifically nylons. Nylons have been the bain of my existence. It was not until I was older and found back-seam, garter less, thigh-highs that I could bear to wear them. The late Princess Diana was know for going bare legged, you would have thought it was going to cause a international incident. I loved it. I remember the picture on the day her divorce was finalized. That beautiful L.B.D., amazing necklace and her beautiful smile and oh my the bare legs. If she had put on shear black nylons that look would have been ruined. Balance, is what I am talking about. Her arms were bare, and to have bare or bare looking legs kept you eyes following. Your eyes weren’t drawn to one portion of her outfit, the whole outfit was one display. To have bare arms and covered legs you eyes are drawn to the dark color. If you want to wear nylons go with the nude color, this will keep the extremities all in the same hue. Now, look at the pic to the right side in this blog you might say “ Well look at that black dress and black nylons, she just broke this rule”. One, this isn’t a rule just a comment. Two, there was one word in this paragraph that makes a huge difference - Shear. The nylons in the picture are as dark as the dress and shoes. Keeping the eye moving and not stopping at some different color. Then the final finish are the gloves and beret.

Black shear nylons with the black suit is different. In the suit your arms are covered, so covering the legs with black nylons looks just fine. Even nude nylons looks fine with the black suit. Your not drawing the eyes to a shocking color. Oddly enough dark black nylons with black suit could make it look much to Macomb.

Black has become the color to hide in. Black is supposed to draw the eye to the eye away from what is covered in black and to the lighter color. But when you all in black (dress and shear nylons), and you have a large section of two colors (your arms vs. your legs) it is shocking to the eye. Plus, if your sleeveless the thought is that it is warm enough to not need to cover your legs. Its like combining winter and summer in one outfit. To see it on the red carpet, a beautiful black dress with a slit to the high part of the thigh only to reveal shear black nylons. Ouch, that hurt my eyes. That was it for me. I was tired of seeing a small amount of women taking on this look. The modern look of boots with L.B.D. is exactly that, a modern take on it. But when I’ve seen women with this look its for a more casual event, and they are not wearing black shear nylons. The boots are dark in color just like the dress.

Keep your L.B.D.’s clean and balanced and it will be amazing.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Mrs. Obama has great arms but ...

Mrs. Obama is know for her sculpted arms.

Her inaugural gown was beautiful and showed off her great arms. But her posture was distracting. Mrs. Obama is tall for a women, and it looks like she is uncomfortable with that height by her posture. I can imagine she would be uncomfortable with her height, but her shoulders roll forward.

You can stand very straight but the shoulders need to be addressed in any good posture. Drawing your shoulder blades together is the first step to get the shoulders out of that rounded look. Its a simple exercise but to remember to do it and make it a habit and then your regular look will take effort and time.

When you have your shoulders in the correct position along with posture you look more elegant. Just putting on an amazing dress is the first start. With a beautiful dress like Mrs. Obama's you would also do you hair, make-up, pick the perfect shoes, handbag and wrap, but dont forget the posture. How straight is the spine? Is the hip bone in line with the ankles when standing? Are the should blades back (remember "chest out")? The neck, are the ears in line with the shoulders and the head isn't jutting out? Stand with you heals against the wall, your shoulders, elbows and back of the head should all have contact with the wall.

Posture is the one of the pieces of elegance that doesn't cost anything.

So, here we are redefining elegance, the first lady in an interview wearing a sleeveless shirt. For years that would be considered a 'no-no'. So what does Mrs. Obama have in common with the female news anchor on Fox news? The sleeveless shirts. For years sleeveless shirts / dresses were considered either for formal wear or for casual summer wear. Now you see the first lady doing an interview in one and the Fox news anchors, with a snow storm going on behind them, wearing sleeveless shirts. Is this style business like? Our world is changing fast, and what is acceptable is changing also.

For a long time and actually even now, fashion experts will tell women to put a jacket or sweater over the sleeveless shirt when your in a business environment. I would like to agree with this. Mrs. Obama on vacation or working in the garden in the summer show off those arms or at an evening formal. But during interviews and daytime events please dress more business like. The same goes to the female Fox reporters. We all know that female journelist on TV have to be attractive, but Fox takes it to a new level. They have intelligent and smart women, that for some reason, dress unprofessional. Low cut shirts, sleeveless shirts (seeing that during the NYC snow storm was funny and inappropriate) and mini skirts are common attire for these women and I've never been able to figure out why so overtly skimpy clothing on such intelligent women on a 'conservative' news channel. But times are changing, I guess its ok for the sleeveless fashion to occur as long as the men dont pick it up as acceptable fashion during work.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Seattle, Don't outsource our safety

In my zeal and anger, my post as a few factual errors.
The first error was there were 3 not 2 "security"guards. Second, these workers are employed not by the city but by a private agency. Third, the 2.7 billion dollar shortfall is not Seattle but the state of Washington.
Now that I fixed those errors my point still stands. 3 adults could or were told not to step in and help a young girl. How do these people sleep? Behavior as displayed by the security guards and the friends of the people charged with theft are poster children for what has gone wrong in our society. Friends of the attackers or alleged attackers claim we dont know the whole story. I dont need to know the whole story. This was a cowardly attack, multiples on one! Then to continue the beating when she was down shows no moral character. So I dont need to know the rest of the story what I saw is enough. What did this girl do that could be so horrible to beat like that. She insulted your ego?
I am mad, very mad at this behavior. Seattle now has police officers in the tunnel. In the mean time we who take public transport have to be fearful with the knowledge that if some punk takes a liking to our watch or bag or phone, we have no helper in the security guards or other passangers. Things dont mean anything, give them what they want, but we still must be concerned if this thug for his jollies will now commence on beating us. There is a much bigger problem that has presented itself - safety. Robberies happen but beating after wards, the security guards we placed there for a reason but they were left impotent by the mandates of the company that hired them.
Seattle save the some money FIRE that company, HIRE trained police officers. How about cadets for the state police? These minimum wage jobs are not effective. No one in their right mind would step in as their job to risk their life. People risk their lives to help others because they are great people you cant pay for greatness but you can pay for complacency.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Step Up

I love Seattle. So when watching the news yesterday I see a story about a beating in the bus tunnel. I don't like riding the bus in Seattle. Every time I have ridden the bus it was frightening. I know of someone who reported a disturbance on the bus and the driver made my friend who reported the disturbance get off the bus. The person causing the disturbance was a metro worker. Well, now the city has another problem with city workers.

These "security" guards stood and watched as a young girl was beaten to the ground then had her head stomped. What did these workers do? Noticed I called then workers because their behavior was inhuman. These workers WATCHED the beating. To be fair the one worker, after at least three kicks to the girls head walked over and told her to stop. Oh big deal.

The majority of people in Seattle are kind and wonderful people, this is not the general behavior. This is a sub culture. The scary thing is this sub culture now seems to have people working in the metro.

Fights have always happened remember "West Side Story"? The difference now are the camera's and a 24 hour news cycle.

These workers, yes two of them, had the security vests on. What good is it to pay these people. Seattle has a 2.7 billion dollar budget problem, here's an idea, their job is just symbolic so who needs metro security. Extreme yes, but those two workers, showed what kind people they are and as a citizen I don't want to pay people salaries that wont help another person when they are "civil servants".

Something is wrong with Seattle Metro, my friend reported the bus driver to the metro for his improper behavior and just like the "security" guards, customer service did nothing. Yes with the budget short fall - lets take a look at the metro and see how many people we really need and how much money we can save by getting rid of those non-workers.

Kindness, Loneliness and "Haters" in society

You will notice that I have added a link to a URL. This is a blog that I follow. I found Kandee on YouTube. Today I watched her video entitled "This is NOT a video about makeup". It really touched me. She makes a point about people, you can ask people to say 10 negative things about someone and they have no problem doing that, but ask them to say 10 nice things about that same person and they will have trouble.

We have so many stresses in our lives simply with getting everything done we need to in the time available. Now, we who are trying to live our life to our best, have to deal with people commonly know as "haters". We all can think of other adjectives to call these people. But they take more from us then they are due. They take our time and they take our confidence, they take our happiness and even if it is for a short time it is time they are not due. How do to deal with these viruses, no clue, really no clue. With the Internet we cant hide. They post to YouTube, they send emails, etc..
No matter what we say to ourselves to work through the mud they throw at those who are being productive in society we still have to clean off that mud.

The only thing we can do is to make a vow never to join in that behavior. That also means that if we know of someone who is a "hater" and is spewing their vomit on others put an end to it. If that person if your friend reconsider quickly if you want to keep them as a friend. Someday you will irritate them and they will throw their trash your way.

These "haters" cause damage, sometimes irretrievable damage, even death. They must not be allowed to remain in your world.

Empathy, that is what we must have. Empathy for the people who are innocent of everything except that this person thinks they are better and more important then everyone else and especially the one they are tormenting. If we don't say or do anything to stop these people we are guilty of complicity. We can not control the behavior of others, but we can make it know that their behavior is sick and something we want nothing to with. Yes, their venom can turn on you and it will take strength and integrity but you are helping in keeping this contagion limited.

The best case scenario is that the good people leave these "haters" to each other and then they can turn on each other.

The most ironic portion of this is" haters" think everyone hates them because they think they are so wonderful, but in reality we don't hate the "haters" we hate their behavior. On YouTube the "haters" we identified and it was suggested to give them negative comments. You might feel that is the only recourse you have but that is what they expect and you know the comment that they will be making. These people don't like themselves anyway so adding fuel to that fire means they will only keep up. Fire needs oxygen and we cant give them any oxygen. What is the worst thing for a "hater"? Being ignored, isolated, the same thing they are trying to do to others. They like the audience. We all have much more important things to do like helping up someone "hit" by the trash of a "hater". Don't focus on the hater focus on the victim of the venom.

Kindness is what we need, kindness to ourselves, you are not stupid, fat or unlovable. You would never say that to anyone so why say it to yourself. The fact that you know you would never say it to another person shows that you are a kind, caring person and are currently in a situation that you don't feel supported. All things change.

We may be physically lonely in our fast pace world and "talking" to a computer isn't the same, but we do have that ability to reach out to people and be kind to them through our technology.

Be kind to all. You find a "hater" just turn and walk the other way they should have no portion of your time and life.

This sounds simple, and when being harassed by "haters" this post really does sound simple. You may understand that your not alone and that everyone is not against you, but the unparalleled weight in your heart wont go away. Support those in this situation, take action - legal, what ever it takes. Your life is to valuable to continue in this. Reach out for help, it will be there. Just ask.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Mani (cont.)

It seems Brooks did not like the last post. Brooks felt it was to long and that I missed the point. So, why doesn't Brooks post? To many projects, so its now up to me to take another shot at mani's.

Basically, its not the French Manicure, but it's when you have acrylic nails that are not formed beautifully or have not been maintained and are to long. The color or design isn't so much the point.

We had seen a women sitting near us this weekend and Brooks and I had the conversation about her manicure. She had acrylic nails that were so built up and not formed they almost looked more like eagles talons. The white section of the manicure looked wider then the natural finger and longer then the nail bed. You could also see that she hadn't been to salon in weeks because of the nail growth. People do notice these things. Having your nails manicured shouldn't draw attention to your hands it should be a compliment to your hands.

Brooks - I hope that this post is more precise and to your liking.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Mani Pedi

Manicures and Pedicures have been popular for at least the last 15 years. Your hand are visible to everyone, taking care of your nails on you hands and feet is good style. In the summer, showing the toes is just going to be your everyday fashion. Do you have to go to the spa to take care of your hands and feet.? No and it doesn't have to be that expensive, you can do this maintenance at home.

There are a lot of fun colors for your nails or there is the natural manicure. So, what is up with the French Manicure? It looks like your trying to combine natural nails with showing off your manicure. I have seen women with tasteful French Manicure's, but there are some with the nails in an unnatural shape and the white is just not natural for any nail. Then this French Manicure has now taken hold on the toes. This is not a natural look, either. It looks pretentious. What statement are you trying to make with this nail effect? The oddest look is to see a women with her French Manicure on hands and toes, showing her style, but then the rest of her look belies the idea that she really cares how she looks.

Elegance is not to draw undue attention to yourself. Unduly long or unnaturally shaped nails draw attention to the nails as quickly as chipped polish on either hands or feet.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

What is in your food?

“How do the ingredients in my food have anything to do with being elegant?” you might ask. Simple, the food you eat impacts your health, the amount of food you eat impacts your weight. Its simple calories in versus calories expended in activity, no magic.

The ingredients in your food are very important. Have you look at a label lately? Depending on the food and how processed it is you need a PhD to decipher what really is in there.

We are all in a hurry these days and cooking food as close to how it came from the farm can be hard, but well worth it in the long run. All of these ingredients that we can’t pronounce – how many times have they been processed and what ingredients were added during the process.

New York City is trying to ban salt, or at least lower the amounts we consume. Take a look at the condiments in your fridge – look at the salt content in ketchup, mustard even hot sauce. Want a TV dinner – beware of the salt. We know the health implications of to much salt and trying to control how much we take in if were not cooking the food ourselves is very difficult.

What prompted this posting? Watching Food Network I was this commercial by the Corn Refiners Association, touting that high fructose corn syrup isn’t bad as long as it’s in moderation. I have two issues with the commercial. The first is; HFCS is in so much of the food we eat, how can we eat it in moderation? Secondly, they make the people who are saying “Don’t eat HFCS” look like idiots. This people when questioned as to why not consume HFCS can’t answer the question. I can, how about this, yes it is corn when it started its life but now it’s closer to Frankenstein then corn. HFCS is a way of sweetening food, a very cheap way. Have you ever had Coke from Mexico or one of the boutique sodas? These sodas use pure cane sugar and the flavor of these sodas is amazing in comparison to the Coke in the cans in America. Do you know why HFCS can be labeled ‘natural’ ? Because there is nothing synthetic in it, but I’ve never seen a HFCS plant, I do know what cane sugar looks like. One more thing, don’t confuse corn syrup you cook with, with this HFCS. Our world is controlled by marketing firms. We must be aware as to who is behind our commercials and news stories. We must look out for ourselves and not let someone in an office or conference rooms in NYC or LA tell us what we should eat, wear or think.
We have been taught that cheaper food is better, to expect big portions, portions that are 2 – 3 times more then should be consumed. We think we are getting our moneys worth. This just isn’t true. Ever see the portions of food we should be eating? Food, when left on its own has flavors that are so satisfying and our digestion systems knows what it is and what to do with it.

Controlling our portions and being aware of what we are consuming will help in controlling our weight and help those who are trying to lose weight. Again, calories in versus calories expended.

I believe in better living thru science, except when it comes to the ingredients in my food.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Charity for Haitians

Our hearts are full of love and concern for all those who have been directly and indirectly affected by the earthquake.

When donating please use your wits and do not fill the pockets of the lowest part of humanity. Those who would take advantage of this situation to enrich their own bank accounts are below and beyond contempt. Personally, they should be hunted down and dealt with. Donate to reputable agencies. Most of the news organizations have a link; even Google has a link where you can feel safer about giving money.
When donating money thru texting, be aware that it could take almost 90 days for that money to make it thru the channels.

One more item, do you know of someone in your community with relative in Haiti? These individuals have been affected also. They have a place to lay their heads, but can they even sleep? Are they eating? How is there family? Are they still looking for family? These people need your emotional support. If you work with them, can you help with the work load that they might not now be so able to complete in a timely fashion? Do they need someone just to listen to there worries? Reach out to these people, they are feeling lost right now. Imagine if you were the only member of your family in a foreign land.

As a world community, please put aside politics and religion that normal separate us.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Classy or Elegant?

Most people use these words interchangeably. The question is, are they? Not really.

Consult and you’ll see the difference. Defining class by about the 8th definition you get “the system of dividing society” and the following one is “social rank esp. high rank”. Class just makes you think of someone wanting to place themselves above another person. Elegant gives you a different definition: tasteful, graceful, and excellent. Those are adjectives that everyone would wish to have applied to there reputation.

Class makes you think of do’s and don’ts

Elegance is something you learn by example.

There have been some high profile books out in the past few years from women with social standing. For some years now this is how class and elegance have been presented to us, as something automatically obtained by the wealthy and privileged, and if you didn’t have this blessing then you were condemned to a life of tackiness. Interestingly enough, in the late 1930’s there was a home study course on personal experience, with chapters dealing on charm and etiquette, for every woman. In our era these books now make is seem that if you are not born with a role model or with the money for classes your only hope is to be uncouth, unlearned, part of the great “unwashed”.

This might be the case if we only had the examples of women from reality TV, “celebutants” and those who married into the aristocracy, which must be making the founders of the United States rolling over in their graves that we still have this odd fascination with titles. George Washington didn’t need any title, nor did Thomas Jefferson. The wives of the presidents (if alive) didn’t ask for nor required a title. These were people that did some amazing things and they were humble enough to realize that their accomplishments were for the betterment of human kind, not singularly a personal betterment. A lesson we all need to remember. We can build better lives for ourselves, but not at the detriment to others, are you listening Mr. Madoff?

The best thing any women can do for a daughter is to be elegant and let her follow your example.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Introducing Brooks

As you see there is a contributing blogger Brooks Forrester. Brooks is the ying to the yang. Brooks will contribute differing views points at times and other times there may be a comment from Brooks pertaining to something particularly irritating that the rest of us can contribute a comment.

Two voices can make for a much more interesting read and multiple view points make a lively community.




I am not sure if I am the ying or the yang. We hope that we can share what we have seen that is just, how should I say it, not kosher to be seen. Like those sweat pant clad, fake blond, plastic manicured "women" going to the store for milk. puh-lease!!! Astor and I may or may not see things eye to eye, though we hope we can shed light on being more elegant. So, enjoy elegance in this era.



This is the first posting of Astor Adams and elegance: redefined.

This really is a niche blog. There are image consultants, stylist and those highly astute in all things etiquette. There are people to tell you which fork to use, others to tell you which cut of what clothing to wear. You even have life coaches to create the amazing life you desire. I am here more as the crowning of your achievements. You can look amazing, know your white wine glass from your red wine glass, and have your life planned out in nice little segments. A lot of people have achieved to that level, unfortunately they have not achieved to that of elegance. Why is that? That is why this blog is here.

There will be very few rules laid out here. There are enough rules in our life. Elegance is a feeling not a law.

Why is there a need to have elegance redefined? Elegance by its sheer nature is timeless and thus wouldn’t need to be redefined. That is absolute correct. What we have now are forces in media and culture that are looking to define elegance as something that everyone can obtain, in short to cheapen the word. In the last 5 years the words; “class”, “classy”, “lady” and even “diva” have been hijacked by people who simply believe that by laying claim to the word means they are, by their mere existence, the embodiment of that word. Words do have meaning and that meaning over time can change. Just as Emily Post has updated her books to reflect our changing times, the word elegant hasn’t changed its meaning, but the strategies are different then 50 years ago. It is no longer only those of the “upper set”, the privileged few which can attain to the mystic of elegance.

Between the words classy and elegant – what is the difference? I would much rather have someone say to me that I am elegant then to hear I am classy. Which would you rather hear?

I leave you for now with that question. I leave it open to members of the blog to respond.

Over the next weeks and months, I will post on current events and open a dialog to see your views. Along the way I will define or in some case redefine into our 21st century the elegance that all women, with a desire, can display.