remembering the holidays : new year’s day

are you wondering what to wear to your holiday office party this year? maybe it’s a neighborhood cookie exchange penciled on your calendar. or it could be a christmas brunch, holiday concert, or, my favorite, the annual Nutcracker performance. you name it, there’s a variety of activities to attend once the holiday season arrives. and since we’ve been sharing our favorite holiday memories this week. it’s time to gear up for holiday outfits. stay tuned to next week where i’ll share outfit inspiration from Thanksgiving all the way through New Year’s.

but in the meantime, i have a few tips and tricks for classic holiday outfits. because the holidays can be stressful enough without stewing over ‘what to wear.’ there are menus to plan houses to decorate, and gifts to wrap. through the years i learned that if i keep several wardrobe staples on hand, i can mix and match to my heart’s content, knowing i can throw a holiday ootd together in minutes. it’s a list of holiday wardrobe basics that make life a little easier this time of year. what made the grade? let’s find out.

velvet blazer

velvet is a beautiful fabric that happens to be on-trend at the moment. similar herehere, and here. i always have one velvet blazer at my beck and call.

faux fur jacket

this little number looks gorgeous popped over a dress or a skirt. similar herehere, and here.

jive talkin'

jive talkin'

velvet skirt

 just like its hard-working counterpart, the velvet blazer, a velvet skirt is a must-have in my closet. add a flannel shirt for an unexpected pairing. similar skirt herehere, and here.

holly jolly christmas

sequin stroll

date night with proctor & gamble


a little shimmer come the holidays is always a good thing. sweaters, skirts, dresses, pants even shoes all make the grade. similar herehere, and here.

happy new year

happy new year

tuxedo blazer

 inspired by the boys but oh-so-feminine a tuxedo jacket is an elegant addition to the holiday wardrobe staples. it’s those satin lapels. similar herehere, and here.

now for a childhood memory of new year’s day. many of you know that i grew up in omaha, nebraska. deep in cornhusker country. corn and cattle are the bread and butter of nebraska so it’s only fitting the mascot for the university of nebraska is the cornhusker. i’m guessing texas had already nabbed the longhorn steer. but back in the day nebraska football was king. it still is but during the reign of tom osborne, nebraska almost always went to the orange bowl and almost always was fighting for the rights to the national title, clinching wins in 1971 and 1972. when i was a young girl there were just a handful of bowl games with the rose bowl and orange bowl as the two grand-daddy’s of football. at least that’s how i remember things.

the rose bowl kicked off new year’s day with an afternoon game blaring on the television. it was the battle of the big ten and pac eight. and my mother would begin to set the scene. or should i say buffet? first, we started with snacks. artichoke dip made in a bread bowl, a veggie tray, and of course an assortment of chips. my dad’s favorite was pickled herring which was my mother’s nod to good luck for the new year. because we didn’t have the ‘traditional’ new year’s menu of black-eyed peas for pennies, greens for dollars or cornbread for gold.

afterward, the ham would appear on the table and my favorite, homemade potato salad. my mom made the BEST potato salad in the world. i still dream of it. plus, a delicious pineapple casserole made an appearance. it’s the perfect companion to ham in my humble opinion. a beef tenderloin soon followed and there were hard rolls available if you wanted to make a delicious sandwich. condiments, crudites, black and green olives were scattered on the table too. and we munched and crunched our way from the rose bowl to the orange bowl in contented bliss. there was lots of hollering all day long at the refs or players depending on who just screwed up. because football was king in cornhusker country and at our house too. my dad and older brother loved, loved, loved the game and had lots of opinions of what should be transpiring.

so that’s how i spent new year’s day until i was well into my early twenties. and i wouldn’t have had it any other way. it was a wonderful way to start the new year with my family. to this day i cherish those memories and all of the excitement only a good football game can bring.



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  1. judy wrote:

    I thought I was the only one who wore “freaky” hats in the 50’s and 60’s. Thanks for the memories Beth, you are the BEST!

    Posted 11.14.19
  2. Linda Taylor wrote:

    I love, love, LOVE the tux on you. I don’t know that I could pull it off. But, wow, on you it looks divine and oh so feminine!

    Posted 11.14.19
  3. Mary wrote:

    The pineapple casserole sounds intriguing. I would love to have the recipe.

    Posted 11.14.19
  4. Liz wrote:

    Dear Beth, I’ve been a fan of yours for so long but never left a comment but I just had to today! The things you’ve said of your own mother have always resonated deeply with me and I had to laugh at your throwback pics. We had the same couch (or as my mom would say, davenport), the same reclaimed brick fireplace, and that exact white coffee carafe. The picture in front of the fireplace could be my sister!! Thanks for the stroll down memory lane and your holiday outfit ideas.

    Posted 11.14.19
  5. Sylvia Espinoza wrote:

    Beth, you’re truly a gifted writer. Enjoy your keen wit so much, as well! Appreciate tagging along on your trip down memory lane today. Can spot the fashionable lady-in-the-making in one of the pictures! So sweet. Thanks for delighting us day after day! Love and prayers to you and your family~

    Posted 11.14.19
  6. Suzanne M Smith wrote:

    Fun memories. I remember your pairing of the flannel buffalo check shirt with the velvet skirt–I love it. That plaid final outfit is cracking me up–but I remember styles just like that back in the day. Here’s to the holidays…I think we all have mom memories of favorite dishes and moments. Gotta’ love ’em.

    Posted 11.14.19
  7. Cyndi wrote:

    I love the way you’ve styled that tie with the tuxedo jacket!
    I was born in Omaha, and moved to California when I was 4, so I don’t remember much about the holiday’s there.I always looked forward to getting something special from Brandeis that my aunt always sent out to California.

    Posted 11.14.19
  8. Joyce kennard wrote:

    Oh that Christian tree. I have a pic of myself with the same looking tree. Icles and all and the branches turned upward. What memories this brings. Blessed holidays.

    Posted 11.14.19
  9. Kim Bufalo wrote:

    I love this blog.
    I am firm believer that any age and size can be stylist.
    Not sure how I found you but will continue to follow.

    Posted 11.15.19

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