self-care week is in full swing. yesterday, we focused on managing grief during the holidays. today, we focus on fun and family during the holidays. although slightly less sober than the topic of grief, finding time for fun and family during the holidays is no less important.
i was led naturally here because today is my daughter-in-law Kelly’s birthday. Kelly has been working with me for over a year now but officially joined the blog full-time in August. Kelly is responsible for our blog and social redesign and produces all of our YouTube videos, amongst a variety of other things. you can catch Kelly’s YouTube debut and stay tuned for more. next year, she’ll be launching a sister site to style at a certain age focused on food, beverage, and design. make sure to wish Kelly a happy birthday in the comments below!
holidays are supposed to be fun. when you turn on the TV, everyone is seemingly having fun. when you open up Instagram, everyone seems to be having a great time—living their best life. everywhere you turn, especially during the holidays, that’s the expectation, right? but as soon as something becomes an expectation, it’s not far from being an obligation. and for whatever reason, there seems to be an inverse relationship between obligations and levity.
don’t get me wrong: holiday dinners, cookie exchanges, white elephant parties, streamers and cocktails in a large ballroom can all be fun. but the type of fun i want to focus on today is slightly different—slightly less obligatory. the fun i want to focus on today is the silly, impromptu fun we’re afforded every single day but sometimes don’t take advantage of.
when was the last time you stayed up until midnight and had a side-splitting laugh with your sister over old stories from when you were kids? when was the last time you pulled your grand-kiddos out of school and binged on old Christmas movies? when was the last time you had a spur-of-the-moment dance party with your kiddos just because, well, just because.
in this digital day and age, everyone has a view on everything. this includes what does or doesn’t constitute as “fun”. there seems to be an expectation that “fun” has to be a photo-worthy vacation or lavish dinner that we can immediately turn around and post on Facebook or Instagram.
and don’t get me wrong, as a fashion blogger, i see nothing inherently wrong with that. but the point i’m trying to make is simple. what do we remember most about our vacations and lavish dinners? when we look back at holidays past what sticks out to us in the most detail?
is it the present our husband got us in 1996? is it the turkey we cooked in 2002? maybe. but i’m willing to bet our most vivid memories are the small, oftentimes silly ones that exist in-between the holiday parties and spiral hams. i’m willing to bet our most vivid memories are the smiles and laughter that we share with the ones we love most.
these moments oftentimes happen at, say, 7AM on December 3rd over a cup of coffee with your daughter-in-law. and these moments oftentimes don’t make the best Instagram photos.
one thing i want to challenge all of us this holiday season—including myself—is a focus on making others laugh and smile. sometimes the best form of self-care is selflessness. making others feel good makes us feel good. there’s an inherent selfishness in selflessness. it’s cliched but true.
but with all of the personal stress the holiday season brings, it’s difficult to look inwards let alone outwards and focus on others’ well-being. this can be particularly true with family, which in some sense is just strange. that the ones closest to us can sometimes be forgotten is almost paradoxical.
let me leave you with this then. think back to a small moment in time where a loved one—maybe your mother, father, or spouse—made you smile and laugh. one of those unforgettable smiles. or gut-wrenching laughs. if you can remember it all of these years later, it’s forever engrained in your memory.
now this year, create that memory for a family member in your life. be that smile or laugh that they remember all those years later. you won’t regret it. i promise.
this week is all about self-care. yesterday, we talked about managing grief during the holidays. today, we talked about fun and family during the holidays. stay tuned for tomorrow as we focus on, well, the self during the holidays.
over the past few weeks, i’ve been getting a lot of questions about my YouTube channel. for my regulars, you know that i generally attach a video to my blogposts. i realize, though, that i haven’t formally introduced these videos in any real detail. below i’ve attached one example video per series we produce: style secrets, fashion flash, the list, outfits of yesterday, and friday fives.
to subscribe to my YouTube channel, either click the link to the left and follow step (iii) to the right; or i) click on any video below, ii) click on the “YouTube” logo to redirect to YouTube’s website, iii) and in the bottom right-hand corner below that video, click the “Subscribe” button.
style secrets is our take on a “haul video”. we gather 3-5 items from one of our favorite retailers like Ann Taylor or Talbots and walk through each with outfit and pairing suggestions. this video rotates with fashion squared, the list, and outfits of yesterday and is published weekly on Sunday morning.
in fashion squared we take one item and show you how to style it in multiple ways. this video rotates with style secrets, the list, and outfits of yesterday and is published weekly on Sunday morning.
fashion flash is the video form of our outfit of the day blogpost. you get a full 360 degree view of how that outfit looks in the wild. moving forward, 3 outfits of the day will be compiled and published in the aggregate, weekly on Wednesdays.
the list is our top ranked lists of various items like shoes, coats, and the like. this video rotates with style secrets, fashion squared, and outfits of yesterday and is published weekly on Sunday morning.
outfits of yesterday is a historical deep-dive into various pieces of fashion like trench coats, chinos, and t-shirts. this video rotates with style secrets, fashion squared, and the list and is published weekly on Sunday morning.
friday fives is my top five hair, makeup and lifestyle picks of the week like lipstick and mascara. this video is published weekly on Friday mornings.