Thursday, January 16, 2020

Two-Fer: Snow Day Sweater and Evening at Hermann's; Raging and Needing Sunshine

My apologies for the absence, my friends - we had a major snowstorm! 
View from our deck on Tuesday night of the street below

It snowed 30 cm (about 1 foot) of snow over night on Tuesday. I read a good metaphor for Victoria's weather - it's like dog years, where -4 here is like -30 anywhere else, and a foot of snow is like 6 feet in other parts of the country. That's about right. Snow and cold is rare here.

The trees outside the house were starting to coat with the white stuff.
The streetlamp was growing icicles.
And the snow was coming down sideways!

So on Wednesday, I bundled up for a Snow Day. All schools and the university were shut down. People were advised not to drive.
Now, it's not a secret that I am 52 and starting to go through menopause, but I have been having intense hot flashes this week and to add to my grief, my hormones have decided that "Rage" is my default emotion. Little things have been frustrating me.

Like the lack of keys in that picture. Sigh. I locked myself out and had to go down these stairs and buzz up to L to let me in (thank goodness he was still home).

I did get a good shot of the Castle, covered in snow.
I love how spooky it looks - you can see it from all over town.

Anyway, due to the -4 temperatures, I layered up.
Maybe too many layers.

  • Sweater - Banana Republic, thrifted; last worn here (2nd outfit) for an October 2019 brunch
  • Turtleneck (under) - Bossini, thrifted; last seen here in December 2019 for our Dots marathon
  • Flocked velvet jeans - L'Wren Scott for Banana Republic, thrifted; last worn here (2nd outfit) in December 2019 to see Matt Patershuk
  • Boots - Prepare Steady, Fluevog; last seen here (3rd outfit) for brunch with Simona in December 2019

I roasted in this, absolutely died. I was so hot, I took the light grey sweater off and just wore the dark grey turtleneck all day.
 The scarf didn't even last an hour.
There was hardly anyone in the office - maybe 20 people (out of 250) in the morning, and up to 50 by afternoon.
As L and I had concert plans that night, I had planned to look relatively chic in my Unsafe Ocelot and Doc Martens (consignment, not tracked but literally worn hundreds of times).
I was sweating buckets in this, walking to and from work, despite the low temperatures. I ended up changing to my Donna Karan down coat (this one, last worn here for Christmas 2019) but didn't have time to take a picture.

  • Fur toque/scarf - Danier
  • Gloves - Cejon, thrifted

The stuff:
It's not much - I was feeling the Rage. I did not want to go to work.

  • Scarf - thrifted
  • Earrings - gift from Mom

My walk to town in the morning was slow and careful.
Dear L was up at 6am, shoveling our front sidewalk. The street is entirely under snow.

I was only the second person to walk on this sidewalk.
On the right is a major artery into town. Road? What road?

This is also purportedly a sidewalk.
It was slippery and side-y. My legs were aching from the babysteps and muscle tenseness and fear of falling. It took me nearly twice a long to get to work as normal (a 20 minute walk).

After a frustrating day at work, I hiked home in melting snow (hurray!) but also very high winds, cursing and sweating and really not feeling like going to a concert. I so wanted to stay home and hide from the world.

But L and I trudged down the shoveled and unshoveled (grrr! Rage!) sidewalks, back to town to see David Francey (link here, 'cause I love) at Hermann's Jazz Club, a Victoria institution (link here).
That's David in the middle and those are our water bottles in the foreground - we were close!

We met up with our dear friend Casey and his teen daughters Jacquie and Maddie, and enjoyed dinner before the show. We arrived just in time to catch David doing his sound check, which is when I took these few pictures.
I didn't catch the names of either of the local gents who accompanied him on fiddle and acoustic guitar, but L's review will be up shortly on his blog (here). David is a folk singer, born in Scotland, grew up in Canada. His songs are short and simple, but full of emotion - he has a very gravely voice. You can listen to his full albums on his site here (I love his sound).

After the show and the visit with Casey, both of which were lovely and helped the Rage subside, we walked home. By then, it had warmed up, creating massive puddles - and winds gusting 90 km/hour! I'd slipped and fallen on our street on the way downtown (it was another Rage incident), and sprained my wrist slightly, so I slept poorly last night. More Rage. RAR.

I threw a few things together before bed that I knew would work.
I know better than to tax my "getting dressed" brain and awaken the Rage further.

  • Sweater - Artisan de Luxe, consignment; last worn here (4th outfit) to visit my family in October 2019
  • Goldenrod skirt - handmade, vintage, thrifted; last seen here in March with pixelated print
  • Shoes - Camper; purchased here for $75.00
  • Coat (below) - Apparence, vintage 80s, thrifted; last worn here for brunch last weekend

I could have done a jammy dress, but what I really needed was some sunshine. If the weather doesn't cooperate, wear your own! 

I had a couple of people at work today tell me how much they liked seeing my yellow - it really is important for me not to pack away all bright colours for the winter.

I also had oodles of fans of this "patchwork" sweater.
It made me realize that the light grey one above is not in the same league - I'm going to move it into my "wear around the house" category of clothes.

I wore a support brace on my wrist for the day at work - L had it from when he had physiotherapy a few years ago - and that helped. I told folks at work about my Rage - they need to know!
But I what I really, REALLY need is a weekend. I am done.

Outerwear - the Unsafe Polar Bear is a snuggly friend. That deep V opening helps me control my temperature and it is not as thick as the Unsafe Ocelot.
L is wearing long underwear with his suit and snow pants

  • Toque - Danier, thrifted
  • Scarf - V. Fraas, thrifted
  • Gloves - Parkhurst

The stuff:
My feet were very happy in these shoes all day, and they had several admirers (the shoes did, not my feet).

Plain bling:
A few solid pieces.

  • Leather/steel cuff - Rimanchik
  • Earrings - Tania Gleave, Vancouver
  • Lapis lazuli ring - Wendy Brandes

By the end of the day, there were patches of blue sky, and although there's still a lot of snow out there, it's rapidly melting. There was even a bit of real sunshine!

And...I've made it. The Rage has calmed a bit. My wrist is sore, but it's nothing major. The weekend is nearly here, and the couch (and a kitty) is calling. Thank you for listening - I don't usually have a Major Rant here but it's just been a rough couple of days. I'll be back on Sunday, so until then, a very happy weekend to you all.


  1. Oh, I remember that RAGE well, although it is long gone for me -- too bad you had such horrible weather to accompany it. Love your idea of wearing sunshine! Take care of yourself, Sheila XO

    1. It was unexpected, Cynthia - I had to figure out how to cope with it, with my friends and coworkers so that they knew it was me, not them that I was Raging against!

      Thank you for the good vibes, my dear!

  2. Sheila, beautiful snowy firs on your walk! That quilt-like sweater with the drive fringe in the middle is cheerful with the yellow skirt. Excellent choice in a gray (for many reasons!) day. I am working through and hopefully, away from, some mommy rage. It helps too hear others admit their struggled, too. Thank you! The Midwest in the USA is getting a snow dumping tomorrow. Excited to see it come down, and looking forward to watching it melt, as well. Ha!

    1. Aren't they lovely, Mel-Bee? My bright colours really saved me that day. Oh no, I hope your mommy rage subsides! Thank you - I don't always like to reveal everything here, but it helps to know that others feel these things too. Good luck with your snow!

  3. I remember Irritation as being my default setting when going through the menopause. So much irritated me...thank God it's all over now - except the very occasional hot flush!

    I can see why you might have been too hot in your first outfit; but that snow was very impressive and it's cold! I loved your yellow skirt and patchwork jumper; definitely a bit of sunshine amongst the cold and snow. Hope the snow has gone by now.

    1. Irritation is usually my default anyway, Vronni, so I guess that cranks up to Rage during menopause, ha ha! Thank you - it's nearly gone!

  4. Winter snow is a pain to live with but visually beautiful. I love to take pictures of it.

    I'd enjoy coming back to visit Victoria but... let me know when your menopause ends. :)

    1. Me too! Ha ha! I will let you know! I hope it won't be too long!

  5. I love, love, love your sunshine outfit! We end up wearing so much grey and black in the winter here and I very much miss colour.

    We are battening down the hatches today as I believe you are sending your snow here! -15 today with a major storm predicted for overnight. Brrr. Could be worse ... the east coast is getting 70 cm!!! Yikes!

    1. Thank you, Nana! I loved that too - I really needed yellow and sunshine! Yikes, good luck and stay safe and warm!

  6. That could be a metaphor for Belgium's weather too! It totally comes to a standstill with the merest bit of snow. That snowstorm doesn't sound like much fun to me, especially when you have to go out in it. It would have taken me hours to get to work and back. So far, fingers crossed, we have been spared. It does look very picturesque, though, all that virgin snow ... The RAGE! Oh, I know it so well. Everybody's talking about hot flushes when the menopause is mentioned, but they don't tell you about the RAGE! And while night sweats and hot flushes have clearly diminished for me, the RAGE is still very much present. Not that I want to discourage you at all. It does pass. They say. How very brave of you to venture outside again to go to that gig. And your sunshine outfit definitely cheered up my morning commute. That skirt and jumper make such a fabulous combo! Hope you wrist gets better soon. Happy weekend, Sheila! xxx

    1. It's apt, isn't it, Ann? It's no fun at all when you're not used to it or prepared for it. It is very pretty though.

      Oh, the Rage! It's horrendous! I was ready for the hot flashes, but wasn't aware of the emotional swings! I'm glad it passes.

      I was so glad I'd worn yellow - it really did help. Thank you, my dear!

  7. Wow, Victoria got gobs of snow, and now we know where the promised several inches of snow/day for Olympia went (as nada fell in Olympia.)

    Ooo, I understand the RAGE. No matter how many years ago it was, I remember what it felt like to not be able to give people the benefit of the doubt and to be rather snarky, especially on the phone to employees of companies where the only hope of reaching them was via phone, and even then it was questionable.

    May the weekend arrive soon and may you have as much R&R as your psyche requires!
    Sending a warming hug, Laurie

    1. Lucky Olympia, Laurie! We certainly got the brunt of it!

      It really felt like the Rage was driving - and I have to be nice and calm with all my colleagues all day. It was very challenging!

      Thank you for the warm hug, my dear - I really appreciate it!

  8. Oh boy, do I remember the RAGE. A lot of doors, books, shopping carts,...were slammed. Annnnd, my daughter was going through puberty at the same time, so there was a lot of whining as well. It's a miracle that my husband and son still talk to us. I still have hot flashes decades later. I think they are related to my levels of stress. Love the snow pictures, and yes, your analogies are accurate. I think your storm will be arriving here in the east US tomorrow. Had to cancel a gathering.

    1. Carol, it is so good to hear that I'm not alone in this! Thank you. Yes, I have noticed that the flashes come on with activity, hot drinks and stress. Good luck with your snow!

  9. Oh don't talk about the rage to me! I'm in the middle of it! I Gerben has a lot to suffer! What a snow. And how awful that you fell! I hope the ankle is better now. Enjoy your weekend love!

    1. Oh, that is so good to hear - I'm not alone, Nancy! Poor Gerben and L, eh? Thank you!

  10. As someone who used to live in the southeastern US, I totally understand this response to snow- then I moved to New England 6 years ago and am STILL amazed/grateful at how quickly they clean everything up. All the extra snow hasn't been as much of a hassle as I thought it would be, thankfully. We're supposed to get some snow this weekend but only a mere 4-6 inches.

    Sorry about your Rage. I'm not quite at menopause time yet but when I'm feeling mentally "off" for whatever reason, I also find making a special effort to dress in a more fun way helps. A good, chill weekend also does wonders. :)

    1. It's so difficult when you're just not ready for this kind of extreme weather! I know the rest of the world laughs at us, but it's really challenging.

      Consider yourself warned then, Ashley! You are so right: dressing up really does help! Clothing as armour! I am ready to chill out this weekend, for sure.

  11. When we get snow in this region, everything stops too. Nobody knows how to walk or drive in the snow, nobody has proper car equipment and it just ends up being such a mess. Sorry to hear about the snowstorm there and all. I imagine it wasn't fun, figuring out what to wear for the cold and the snow and ending up feeling too warm. On the brighter note, you took some lovely photos of the snow. That castle does look spooky under the snow. Your 'snow' styling is lovely, I like the printed pants.

    The outfit with the statement sweater and a yellow skirt is so fabulous. I do love the pop of yellow. You look fantastic in this styling. I agree that it is important not to pack all the clothes away.

    1. Yes, Ivana, it's just like that here! Taking pictures is calming for me. Thank you! I really needed the colour - we need brights in the dark of winter.

  12. Sorry it was such a tough couple of days for you! I'm glad your wrist is feeling better. I really like the second outfit where you pulled out all the sunshine - little things like that can really boost our mood although faced with snow I'd probably wear the first outfit and just pile on all the layers, haha!

    1. It's much better, thank you, Mica! Yes, those brights really made a difference! You would have been freezing here - it's such crazy weather.

  13. Wow, that snow is dramaaaaatic!!!!!! Funny to see you what looks like jeans! You look great though! The Ocelot looks so cosy! I do like the patchwork!!!

    1. I know, so much snow! Thanks, Kezzie, ha, so weird to see me in jeans, right?

  14. We are all allowed a rant once in a while. I am familiar with those days where your temperature setting is set on rage. I think you started a chain of heavy snow that moved very quickly east. St. John's Newfoundland got several feet on Thursday/Friday and here in Ontario we got a foot or so over the last two days.

    I like the patchwork sweater paired with the blast of yellow skirt. Definitely a spirit-lifter.

    1. As my default setting is "irritation" it doesn't take much to push me into Rage mode, Shelley! Thank for letting me rant here. I know, I saw that! It makes me feel bad for complaining about our very little amount.

      Thank you!

  15. sorry you've been having those annoying hot flashes, but I agree with previous comments that 'emotional roller coaster' is the worst part. Having rage episodes looks like a damn nightmare, dear lady. I've been more in the 'crying without any reason' side, which makes me feel frustrated and ridiculous. Glad that these episodes don't last too much!
    And so sorry that you twisted your ankle, feeling very identified with you!. Glad that both of us suffered only a slight spread. Hope you're feeling better!
    Also glad that you wore your beautiful patchwork pullover and yellow skirt to cheer up the day, as you look like a million bucks in it!. Love your shoes (yesss!) and cute red accessories, and your coat too!
    Thanks for sharing your menopausal symptoms, you are not alone!. Lovely to read those comments!

    1. My default "setting" is Irritation, so it doesn't take much to push me into Rage, lol. I am glad that the "crying with no reason" has missed me (I hope!).

      It was my wrist, but it's better now. Thank you!

      All that bright colour really made a huge difference - I was amazed at how much it made a difference to wear a bright. Thank you!

      Aw, thanks very much. I wasn't sure about posting all of this, but I'm really heartened by the responses here. Thanks so much.


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