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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

It's Time to Retire....

M.I.A. That is what I bet many of you have been thinking. It is true and not true. I am pretty easy to find if you follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and on my YouTube channel. I posted my annual lust list for 2017 and then just did not bother to come back here after that. It is now two months later and I finally feel as if I can fill you in a bit as to the reasons; it is nothing earth shattering I promise you. I have been writing this blog for nearly 7 years, nearly 700 posts under my belt..that is a very long time in blogging years. The blog has gone through so many changes, some big and some barely noticeable. The truth as I said, is not earth shattering. Plain and simple I hit a block...not just writers, but on so many more levels. 

So many of you who have followed me here for a long time know that I have fibromyalgia and arthritis, on top of that I also have depression, which also is effected by the seasons more so, and as the cherry on top I have anxiety. This past few months has been one of the worst for the all of the above. So major block. Then there is the writers block, an obvious. After all these years I simply do not know what to write about. I had been trying, and having some success this past year of getting sponsors who were kind enough to send me products to try and then review/promote, giving me a subject matter on a silver platter so to say, but after a burst of that happening on a regular basis it dried up. I tried to put out announcements and "pleas" even but nothing came of it. So my Ruby's Musings blogging tour really was the last time I had such an the math, it has been months. I often in the past have thrown in blogs about daycations with hubby, but sad truth is, those have come to a near stop and the couple times we have been out and about it has just been wine tasting and well again if you are a long time follower, you have read that, been there right? The last ditch effort so to say for content is recipes. I do love to bake and cook and share that with you, but they are not the most popular of blog posts so the effort seems hardly worth it. 

I am not the classic retro blogger, I am not the classic how to blogger, and tho I would love to do a regular retro/vintage fashion blog for you all, that requires A) a regular influx of new clothing, or new ways of putting an outfit together B) SPONSORS sending me goodies to wear and C) someone to take my photos because selfies in the mirror with my phone just are not going to compete with other fashion and style bloggers....OH and a sub category from that, having the time to seek out interesting one wants to see the same old locations over and over. Over the last few months and trips hubby has let it be known that tho he is not opposed to taking my photos, and helping with videos now and again for YouTube, he does not like that each and every time we leave the house and have time together that it turns into a "working" daycation/vacation. I have to listen to him, and see his side of it and take his feelings into consideration....but it does tie my hands as I do not have anyone else to go to for the photographs etc.,. So that brings me to the title of this long awaited ( or has it been) blog post....retirement. 

I bet you thought perhaps I was speaking about retirement from a job. Well, in a way it is. Not that I see my blog entirely as a job, but on the other hand when I when I was working on getting sponsors and then making them happy it became one. Don't get me wrong, I ADORE all the sponsors that I worked with. I thoroughly enjoyed receiving goodies to try in the mail, who wouldn't? But I had to look at it like a business and a job. The items I was in charge of promoting was my paycheck. I have ALWAYS enjoyed writing, it was a passion from an early age, so writing is never a chore, IF I am inspired, and if I am not, then yes, then it becomes a job, it becomes work and often without much payback. In this age of busy lives, the desire for instant gratification and to multi task, I feel blogs often go forgotten by the wayside. I am guilty. I subscribe to so many blogs, and I have not ready or even visited to skim over most of the ones I subscribe to, even those that come into my email, making it so much easier to keep track of, they will back up and then I have to spend an entire day reading....on the other hand I tune into YouTube nightly and at times in the morning, to watch and listen and yes if it is in the morning I multi task. YEP! I am I understand. I also when reading a blog do not actually always read every mind is so busy that it is hard for me to focus and stay that way....even reading books has become hard for me. Heck, even writing has become hard as my mind wonders if I am not totally into the subject of which I am writing about. 

Awhile back on one of my youtube videos and across social media, I mentioned the idea of doing a newsletter, and a few lovely people said they would read it....but the more I looked into it and played with it, the more I realized how different would that truly be than writing a blog? That just did not seem appealing to me at all. so that fleeting idea flew right out the window. So that made me realize that I really had finally come to the realization that perhaps it was time to move on. It was time to retire from blog writing. GHASP! I know. Trust me it was not an easy thing to realize that is where I am at, but as much as it was something that created a heavy feeling in my heart and the pit of my stomach it was also like a weight that was lifted. By not having a weekly deadline for both a blog and now my youtube show , it freed up time where I could have more "me time". I need that. I need time to sit and be disconnected and just be me. I am sure I will miss it....I will miss all of my loyal readers who have become friends. HERE IS THE GOOD NEWS...... you can still connect with me over on Facebook, though yes, I am not posting as much over there, I still do post on a daily basis....and on rare occasions deal with the pain that is LIVE FB ( don't get me started on that love hate relationship I have with the latter), and you can of course find me on Instagram, Twitter and the newest, well not that new,as  I have been doing it a little over a year now.....the Ruby's Musings on YouTube and the At Home with Ruby's Musings show.

Each social platform offers different and cross over content. My Ruby's Musings Facebook and Twitter feed are basically the same thing, as the FB reposts over on Twitter...truly it just depends what platform you prefer. FB is where I post fun vintage/retro images that I spend countless hours searching for, and of course you can always reach my YT and blog posts via the fan page as well.  I am happy to connect with you either way, I will always answer any comments on both as soon as I am notified. Instagram is more of a variety, a real mix of things. I try to make it a mix of promotional photos, outfit of the day posts, and on occasion a more personal post is made...if my family allows it.  Instagram is my preferred platform now, and is a better snapshot into my daily life and truth be told if I was to use only one platform and retire all the others, it would be I.G., though since the updates to make it more like FB pages, it is not quite as good as it once was. Lastly as mentioned, and I know many of you follow me on the next one, my YouTube channel. It is a verbal version mixed with a visual of what my blog is.... was. Like my blog has always been it is a real mix. I tried for the first several months to keep it the same format each week, but since returning from my blogging tour in September, I have had fun mixing it up, from "Get Ready With Me" to "In the Kitchen with Ruby" and everything in between, I have just been having fun with it. I figure that I can easily take what I share here in the written word and fit it into a video. I can still share products, clothing, make up etc and give you an honest review, but I can also simply do a video sharing my daily life or a "Week in the Life of " , and of course if ever anyone has a "Dear Ruby" question I can go old school and do a video on that. If you are a sponsor reading this, then I would love the chance to work with you and share your product and business on YT as well as my other social media platforms, I feel that I can do just as good of a job getting the word out there that way as I can here on the blog. 

So there you have it. I am retiring least for now...just like rock stars and actors that retire and then have a "I'm Back" revival tour, I shall never say never about coming back. I will not delete Ruby's Musings dot com as I have nearly 700 posts here that many of you are still reading and catching up on and enjoying. There is something for everyone. You can follow my life journey, get a new recipe and learn of new places to visit and businesses to shop from. This blog is a piece of me and I could never hit the delete button....ever. IF you do not already follow me on FB, Twitter, IG and or YouTube, I hope you will do so and say HELLO! Let me know your thoughts and let's connect and become friends. 

So for now, I am dropping the curtains, dimming the lights and like in one of my favorite shows from my childhood,The Carol Burnett Show, sweeping the stage and giving a final tug of the ear to let you know that I love and appreciate each and every one of you for your support. 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Second Annual New Year's Bucket Wish List 2017

It is that time of year again! 

So it is a new year! HELLO 2017 !  So far, it has been much the same for me as 2016 was just days before. I have either been in workout clothing or in a variety of P.J. styles. I wake up late after a night of tossing and turning ( pain issues, busy brain etc etc) , I brew my tea, an entire pot, a much larger one due to the cold and rainy weather. I put my bread in the toaster, take my supplements with a glass of diet OJ, which is pretty much the only reason they get taken, and I turn my phone on and begin the task, and yes at times that is what it is, of checking the various social network platforms to see if I need to attend to anything such as answering comments etc. I then settle on the couch, and by this time it is late morning, with my pot of tea, my buttered toast and jam and turn on the Young and the Restless and I partially pay attention as I try to eat, continue to troll through Instagram and Facebook and see what Jack and Victor are up to on the show. Before I know it, it is 3 p.m. and it is Dr. Oz and I am still in my PJ's and no make up and currently my hair does not need much work, so it does not look too bad, and so my day goes. I often will make another pot of tea, drink a few glasses of plain water, and will grab a late day shower and then change into new PJ's. Then hubby comes home. On a good day, which for me lately does not happen often as I would like, I change around noon and do my weight work out, stretches and tummy exercises. I have goals, I have motivation, I simply do not have the energy. It is not a secret that I have fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, arthritis, anxiety and depression, which is more like a chronic case of the blues ( a life long struggle) , it just seems as if it has been in very high gear since coming off my artificial hormones over the summer. It was a slow slide down , but now that I am here, well...... BUT ENOUGH OF ALL THAT! This post is NOT about that subject yet again , no, this is about my lust list. 

So what is a Bucket Wish List? Well it is a combo of a Bucket List, meaning things I want to own at some point in my know instead of the typical "what I want to do" which is the typical Bucket List. and "Wish" added to it , well it might be redundant, since a "what things I want to own" Bucket List is basically the same thing, but this is my blog and that is what I call it.  LOL Anyway, I do not write or abide by resolutions. I realized long ago that those goals and resolutions etc. go right out the window very quickly for me. I can not dictate what my body or mind will or will not let me do. Oh sure, I can have will power, I can be determined and have motivation, but as mentioned if my body says "no, not today" there is often I just can not fight it and I have to go with what is achievable that moment, that hour or that day. Maybe it is getting up, eating, a few chores, or it could be as simple as changing my clothing and swiping on some lipstick. When you are in pain be it chronic or something that will eventually go away, comfort is key. Now most of you reading this see me all dressed up.  Confession, sometimes it is only from the waist up....thank goodness for selfies! I have a large amount of skirts, dresses, I have a small amount of pants and a couple pairs of jeans and of course tops etc , but none of my more casual clothing, unless it is my work out clothing, which feel like PJs , but can be termed "getting dressed", is what I would say all that comfy, either due to fit or constriction etc., so this years Bucket Wish List is about items of clothing  (and a few honorable mentions in the accessories or undergarment department) that I would love to purchase this year, of which I feel that I could wear around the house, keep my retro style intact, be comfortable and even if I do not feel good, I could look better.... maybe even into the category of  decent and stylish enough to be seen by the mail man. Last year I wrote my first Bucket Wish List, it was a lot of fun and actually I managed to get quite a  few things off of it. I think really only one vendor , a brooch company is lacking from what I managed to purchase. I would be over the moon if I could make even a portion of this years appear in my wardrobe! So let's get started! 

The first is actually not clothing. It is cosmetics. Last year I had Besame on my BWL and over the year I managed to get my favorite colors, some of the brightening powders, blush, mascara and even perfume. I am a HUGE fan!! The company and customer service is top notch. However if you know me, I have an addiction to lipstick. So when I learned about Julie Hewette and that she created makeup for the stars and had a tie in with a couple of famous pinup gals, I knew I wanted to check it out... and lucky me she has a line of matte lipsticks, a must try for any retro gal, but she has a full range of cosmetics on her web site. In fact, the slogan on the front page is " Classic Hollywood Staples Created on Set by Makeup Artist Julie Hewett." The prices are pretty average for good quality,  yet not overly expensive.  A good combo in my book.

photo is of the matte collection, and not my property,
all credits go to the Julie Hewett web site. 
Up next is a company who happened to be one of my sponsors from my blog tour this past September Heart of Haute , I own not one, but two of the Estelle bow tops, an adorable blouse that has flutter cap sleeves and comes in a variety of prints and solids. I also own one of their circle skirts, dresses and a knit pullover Lilly top. What I would love to add is one n( or more) of their sleeveless blouses, the Ella,  that is like the Estelle, but without the sleeves ( obviously) , I feel they would be a great addition and layering piece, as I now have hot flashes, layering is a must, you never know when you will need to strip off clothing. 

This is the Busy Bee Ella blouse, photo
is not mine and is property of HOH 
Next we have something in the cosmetics department once again, and well let's face it, tho not clothing, one can be in a pretty robe perhaps, have their hair done, a swipe of lippy and then if we were to add a few let's say faux lashes, we could look a little more put together, but I fail at application of lashes, enter the Flirt Cosmetics  Lash gun !  An easy way to add individual lashes with supposed ease. 

Image found on pinterest.
Getting back to clothing, next up we have Freddies of Pinewood, which if I can recall made it to last years list, but I did not end up getting anything. Like many small retro companies, their stock is limited and because they have quality product, it sells out quickly and often my size is one of the first to be sell out. So I am once again adding a few items to the BWL and we will see what happens.  I am really in love with everything they have, but as I try to keep more in the 1950's to early 60's with my style, it narrows things down. and as I already have a pair of high waist jeans from another site, tho if given the chance to own a pair of Freddies....anyway,  I concentrated on some of the tops and maybe a pair of capris. *photos are from the Freddies web site and all copyrites belong to them. 

How cute is this top... It is a sweater girl style, but is a
a heavy knit, and has a true vintage piece insert! 

This is the "Boyfriend" , I think it is darling,
who does not like stripes?

This wrap top can be worn over or under the waistband of
a skirt or pants. I adore wrap tops! 

I really enjoy having red pants as part of
my basic wardrobe, but recently I my
Old Navy pair of Pixie Pants got a stain
on them. 

Now I have a few honorable mentions before I move on to the next round of clothing , a couple of items would not be comfortable until I get my pain levels under control , but I am adding them to the list anyway! Now while I was on my blogging tour, I managed to go to the U.S. division of What Katie Did , and bought my black bullet bra. I would really love to own one of the peach tone bullet bras, as well as some of the underwear, maybe a corset and some stockings. Even with my fibro I can manage to wear such things for a few hours to help retro clothing look more authentic. I would also love to own a few items from House of Satin and I truly want a long line bra from Rago Shapeware
The last item in the honorable mention section , is something I have wanted for awhile now. I have bought cheap versions, mid price versions and am not happy with either and am kicking myself for not purchasing them when I was shopping on Magnolia Blvd. in Burbank back in September.  That would be hoop earrings from Pinup Girl Clothing, they happen to be 50.00, but they are the perfect size and replication of the style of earrings that Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe wore... what I like is that they are not too big or small and like I said , good quality, tho I am sure that like a lot of things on PUG the price is a bit elevated....I mean for 50.00 I could have a new top or something else on my wish list. But darn it, I really have wanted them for a while now. 
Legacy Hoops
photo is from PUG and not my property
Continuing on ,  next on my wish list is quite a few things from Vivian of Holloway. Just this past few months I have had the opportunity to purchase one of their Raglan blouses, two of their Slash Neck tops as well as one pair of their 1950's style pants AND three skirts, not to leave out a few accessories such as berets and jewelry.  Every time hubby got a bonus I asked for money to buy an outfit.  Like I mentioned above because of quality and limited quantity (and my size or color choices or both, selling out pretty quick), often I have tried to purchase from this great retro company but haven't had the luck on quite a few things. The list of what I desire from VOH is pretty long at this moment, but a few things would be more of what I already have, just in different prints, solids and before you say it, YES, I am one who if they like something and it works, I buy several of that item. I would also this year add a few solid color pencil skirts or perhaps a print that catches my eyes..something that is missing in my wardrobe. * photos are from the VOH website and not my property. 

Peddle Pushers , I own purple in these,
but would love to own basic colors such as
black and navy. I like that they are a fuller
cut pant and not super tight, but also
look quite nice on with a good fit.  

Pocket Pencil Skirt , this is in the wool flannel
I would not mind owning this Ruby version,
but if they came out with a lighter fabric in
solids I would be all over it! 

The new Swagger Coat... isn't this green amazing?
I am pretty sure this will not land in my closet as
they are selling rapidly, but my oh my this would be
a stunning piece to own. 

This is one of two Slash Neck knit tops I own.
I love how it looks like a heavy, chunky sweater knit,
but it is actually a print on a thick jersey knit. A
fantastic basic, and like many ladies, I would love on
in just about every color for the cooler months. 

The Raglan blouse in black is in my wardrobe.
You can see it in recent holiday photos on FB & Instagram,
again it is a great basic and I would like to add to my collection.
I recently wore it with a thin sweater under it, but could see it on
it's own of course or layered with a Slash Neck or even a colorful
tank under it.

The very last store on my BWL is Lady K Loves also out of the UK. I have long admired quite a few items on their website, and I actually own one pair of their jeans and they fit like a dream, tho I would like to have them hemmed and have the rolled up cuff be a tad bit smaller. They were my first pair of high waist pants and they fit like a dream, plus a year later and a few washes, still look new! But I am recently obsessed with their Splenda wrap top and Wendy as well as the May 1950's style pants. LUCKY ME I won a contest that was being run via Miss Lark Bahr's blog and Instagram feed, and will have 50.00 euros, which ruffly equals about 52.00 in the exchange.  I am hoping to get one pair of Wendy Pants and a Splenda top, unfortunately due to the fact that they are sale items and a lot are sold out in my size, my choices are limited. Now I could simply get one pair of the May pants, and there is still a lot of choices, but I do like to get more bang for my buck. *photos are from the LL web site and rites do not belong to me . 

The Becki Top 

The Wendy pant 

The Splenda top 

The Say Yeah top 

So that is my 2017 Bucket Wish List will be fun to see if I can add even add a couple ( over the Lady K Love items since I won the contest so that is a given) of the items to my wardrobe and build my casual/daily wardrobe. Do you make resolutions or goal lists in January or do you just wing it? I would love to hear from you in the comments below, or find me on FB on my fan page or on my Instagram feed and tell me all about it! 

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Ruby's Musings my Year in Review

So here we are. The last week of 2016. What a year it has been. First, let me apologize for an epic fail with the Ruby's Musings month of holiday recipes. I do not have a good excuse. I simply could not manage the energy to look up recipes, get in the kitchen and photograph etc etc. I have as of late, not had the energy to even be retro fab ( aka getting out of pjs. putting make up on and doing a productive job as a retro housewife) , my days seem to be starting later and later, and by the time I finally get to the point of the day of finishing my pot of tea ( a must to function) , it is late in the day and chores must be completed and dinner thought of ( and hubby has been doing nearly all the cooking so even that has not played into my day as of late) and then hubby comes home and it is time to sit and spend time with him. Before I knew it, all my best of intentions went by the way side and I did not even open and turn on my computer. I have failed to do much with my YouTube channel and efforts on FB and Instagram have been slim at best.  That out of the way, let's wrap this year up! 

The year of 2016 has blown by! It started off with a bang, right out the gate I knew that in February I was going to be traveling to Vegas to have a whirl wind weekend of meeting fellow retro ladies that I had connected with on Instagram, meet with a fellow blogger ( Senior Style Bible) and do some major shopping . What fun it was. Oh and while planning for this jaunt to Vegas, I decided to bite the bullet and begin a YouTube Channel! Me who really does not deal with web/internet/technology very well decides to do a weekly show! That really means an all week long project along with my blog, and social media presence. Then, upon returning from Las Vegas, life did not slow down as my daughter and myself started our Etsy shop Housewife Chic by Ruby and it really took off, in between handling customer service and the social media aspects, plus being responsible for getting packages to the post sometimes two to three times a week, the youtube show, my blog et. etc.,  it kept me hopping! 

Every day of 2016 thus far was centered around social media. I took it upon myself to further my ambitions with it and really dive in head first and try to start a promotional aspect of my brand "Ruby's Musings".  It started slowly, but began to grow, where each weekend it seemed I had a client wishing me to promote an item of clothing, or accessory and weekends were spent going out and finding places to take photos in which would help in that and then my weeks were spent mapping out blogs and editing photos, and doing promos for my blog and youtube show to get these products noticed.  The days, weeks and months passed and new clients would pop up just when needed it would seem so that I could keep up with it, and it seemed that maybe just maybe I could make a real go at it and could handle it along with my "real life" and that my having fibromyalgia and a host of other issues, was not going to get in the way, so I charged ahead.... I planned a blogging tour for the Fall. I started promoting and hoping that I would get sponsors....I expected a couple, BOY OH BOY was I surprised, but more on that in a bit. 

This was the year I turned 50. It seemed like it was going to be no biggy, I mean honestly I did not think I was going to feel any differently, I did not think it was going to influence anything in my life at all, the day came and went, and I was correct in that assumption, for a time. I had a great party, family traveled in , loads of fun was had. This was also the year of my 30th wedding anniversary , and my baby girl, the youngest of my three daughters also turned 25. Suddenly something clicked in my head and took seed, and I never felt older. I felt out of place in the retro world as well as in my own skin, and almost over night I also began to really feel it physically, and emotionally... maybe it was coming off of artificial hormones or perhaps it was the non stop being tied to my phone, computer and social media that had taken it's toll, either way, each day had started to become a battle. A struggle against myself. I did not have time for this. but I was loosing whatever fight I had....regardless, I  had obligations to my fans, clients, sponsors and my family and I had an up and coming blogging tour , already planned out, paid for and sponsors lined up for each day. 

My blogging tour not only was to include a photo shoot, but also visits to landmarks, two amusement parks,  or three if you divide Disneyland and California Adventure, a professional photo shoot , and my normal, photos taken by hubby, photo shoots, major shopping and a trip with a new destination and hotel nearly every day for a week! BUT that was not all, in between I was also supposed to do mini live broadcasts and interviews for Pin Up The Movie. WHAT?! I may not seem like it, but I am an introvert and have social anxiety....what was I thinking at accepting that challenge??  But I somehow ( despite technical difficulties and nausea the entire time) managed. The tour took it's toll in so many ways physically, I was in such pain, I was exhausted and totally drained on a daily basis from day two till the end, but I made the very best of it and do not regret it in the least. I am actually eager to do it again, but with quite a few tweaks to make it easier to handle. 

Upon returning it took me nearly a complete month to share and give the proper amount of promotion across social media for all my sponsors, I had not thought that part out and it was nearly as exhausting as the trip itself to make sure it happened and before I had a moment to even catch my breath, my online bestie, a fan who became a friend came for a visit in October for several days of fun and adventure. It was wonderful to have a gal pal that was also into the retro culture and mind set and with whom I could laugh with, chat with and have girly time with. I actually handled having a house guest that I was unfamiliar with,  far better than I thought I would, the visit was a success and I hated to see her fact upon her leaving I realized how very alone and lonely I actually am. I have not had a close gal pal that lives close since moving back to California from Texas a little over 10 years ago and I fell into a complete funk.  I am one who is ok with being alone, but day in and day out with no one to hang out with ( physically) that has the same interests as myself , it gets very hard from time to time. 

As the time continued to pass, I crawled deeper into my shell and started distancing myself from social media and the outside world for the most part. My four walls became a safety zone. During this phase , which I am trying very hard to climb out of even as I type this, to get things back on track , I began to slack here, on youtube and even with my own self care... the fact that at this time, beginning in early November I suddenly had a major allergic reaction to all hair products ( something that seems to be calming down... a fibro flair maybe?) and could not even stand to physically take care of my hair without I made the decision to chop off all my hair....the one major retro thing in my life that was constant and was as important to my look, if not more so than my clothing. It was part of my brand, who I was, and suddenly it was gone.  I felt even more disconnected. I have had a short pixie before, but was never in the public eye as much as I am now. I know from research there was starletts of the 50's who had shorter hair, even pixies ( I even discussed that here on the blog and on my Youtube show) and there are ladies in the current retro scene that also have very short pixie cuts, but each day that I scrolled through my feeds  made me want to hide  more, turbans and hats became my friends.  I started posting less of myself . I started to feel like an impostor,...not from anything anyone said to me , everyone has been supportive and have cheered me on, my own inner demons are quite powerful I am afraid. And that is where I remained, more behind the scenes, and withdrawn til the other day when I posted a Christmas message online without a hat, scarf or turban on. 

Despite these binding ropes my mind, emotions and physical issues are keeping me in at the moment, I do have so many fond memories of this past year. In addition to the fun activities and some minor successes and getting to meet my online bestie, as I mentioned , my middle daughter, Rebecca, the talented artist behind Housewife Chic and all my art across social media became engaged to a wonderful man and wedding preparations and plans have begun for a May 2018 wedding. We could not be more thrilled since after the tragic death of her first husband nearly 4 years ago she is due some happiness.  I am however very ready for this year to be over and done with and try to get back on track where I was before the year started in many areas of my life. 

I am looking forward to 2017, continuing to build my brand, at my own pace, but build it all the same, going to Viva Las Vegas and meeting many of the wonderful ladies that have shown me so much love and support on line, and having many adventures past that, including another visit from my bestie and maybe even another, much shorter and relaxed road trip to the coast , with mini day trips and adventures here locally....AND OF COURSE,  getting back to spending more quality time with all of my fans here on the blog, YouTube, and across social media...because without all of you, life would be far more mundane than even I can stand! You all mean the world to me and I look forward to connecting with all of you as much as I can!

 I would love to hear in the comments what you are ready to move past from, and leave behind from 2016 and what you are looking forward to and wanting to make happen in your own life in 2017! OR what you would like to see here in this blog as well as as my YouTube show in 2017.....remember I am always just a click away! You can contact me via email,at,  messaging on FB on my Ruby's Musings fan page, DM on I.G. or comments here or on YT and Twitter. I will always answer back!  If you are a business owner and I have not scared you away with this post, and want to place an ad here on the web version of my blog as a sponsor or collaborate in any way, feel free to contact me as well. I will work tirelessly to make you happy and to promote your product. 

Next week ...... The second annual Ruby's Musings Lust List for 2017 

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Holiday Spice and Everything Nice ~ Cookies

Cookies in Cookies?  YES!!!

Tis the season for the Ruby's Musings month of sweets. Well obviously by now you have figured out that I am a bit behind with all that. I did not line up a bunch of retro recipes, I have not been up to baking non stop all day, no, truthfully I just have been a bit slow with much of anything on the holiday front, but I will not go into a list of the why's with all that, let's talk cookies! You all KNOW, I have a sweet tooth, I could eat cookies and baked goods all day , and I love it when the house smells like warm baked when it is cold the oven helps warm things up. So when my middle daughter, Rebecca asked for my help, (which then became me doing it for her  and I did offer) , with baking cookies for her future in-laws cookie exchange party , I gladly said 'yes, of course!'.  

She told me that she had a very easy recipe and all the ingredients, she just does not have a big kitchen and her oven has been busy baking our jewelry for Housewife Chic by Ruby . She told me that the recipe was from Pinterest and was basically a dump cookie using cake mix and wait for it.... OREOS! A sort of cookies and cream flavor profile.  It contained cream cheese, a full stick of butter, chocolate and white chocolate chips as well, how could you go wrong? The cookies were indeed very easy to make, and tho the recipe called for folding in the oreos and chips, which is hard for me, and then scooping chilled dough, something that is also hard for me, lucky for me my stand mixer with a bread hook helped with part of it and hubby did the latter. The results MMMMMMMM SOOOOOO GOOOD! So then when knowing I was in a pinch for a holiday sweet and treat post I decided to do my own version , hence this post/recipe! So what is my version? Well, I substituted spice cake mix for the white cake, instead of chocolate Oreos I bought the cinnamon Oreos , and I replaced the chocolate chips for cinnamon chips and the final touch I shaved in some nutmeg. The result was originally supposed to be like a egg nog in cookie form, but the use of the spice cake mix made it more like a gingerbread cookie , YET, not. No matter what , and aside from hubby saying next time "spice it up even more", they were VERY tasty!  So you want the recipe??  Ohhh ok..... 

Holiday Spice Cookies
pre- heat oven to 350 degrees 

1 spice cake mix 
8 tablespoons of melted butter or margarine
1 egg room temp.
1 teaspoon of vanilla 
fresh nutmeg ( and other baking spices if you like) to taste
4 ounces of cream cheese, softened 
2 cups of cinnamon Oreos , crushed 
(I put mine in a bag and beat them up with a rolling pin)
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup cinnamon chips
makes 24-36 cookies* 

Combine cake mix, butter, egg vanilla and cream cheese , 
beat until a soft dough forms.  Stir in cookies and chips by hand
( tho I used a bread hook on my mixer and slowly blended), Refrigerate
dough 30 minutes to one hour.  
Then either with your hands or with a small cookie scoop 
( and we actually used a medium size cookie scoop) , roll/scoop into 24 balls ( we got 28).
 Place on baking sheet ( we used parchment paper), and bake for 10 minutes 
(* 9 minutes if you got 36) , DO NOT OVER BAKE!!  The cookies will seem underdone,
but they will continue to bake/set up as they cool.  Let the cookies rest for 2-3 minutes, and
then with the back side of a flat spatula, flatten cookies out. Transfer cookies to wire racks 
( we, because we used parchment paper, just slid the cookies, paper and all to the counter for
another two minutes before transferring to the racks.), and let the cookies fully cool and set up. 
Store in a sealed container, with layers of parchment between layers.  

All the goodies...many if like me, I often have most on hand. 

Get your aggression out on the cookies LOL 

Stage One 

Stage Two

Dough ready to be chilled 

Using a medium scoop ( but you can use your hands)
to keep them as uniform as possible and
parchment paper makes for easy clean up. 

After the 10 minute baking time and and 2-3 minute cool off.....

Smash those sure to clean off the spatula as needed to prevent sticking issues. Now
let them cool a bit longer if using parchment paper on the counter,
then transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely before storing. 

Christmas lights on, a holiday special on the tv and our
choice of libations are perfect when accompanied by
a fresh baked cookie! It is Holiday Spice and Everything Nice! 
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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Embracing Going Gray ~ Turbans

Turbans available Lacey Rose Creations 

Recently I shared needing to cut off my hair due to health issues and not being as comfortable with the look as I once was, especially in my retro look lifestyle... even tho Jean Seberg once made a similar crop very chic to have after she cut her hair off for Joan of Arc, as well as actresses like Audrey Hepburn and Leslie Caron to name a few who also went short, but not quite as drastic as Jean or myself. Health was the driving force, but I could have left the hair a bit longer, but was just not wishing to deal with the "skunk stripe" , especially with being in the public eye. I did not even consider how I would feel with a "buzz cut" however. So here I was, 90% of the colored hair was gone, but so was what was to me, a retro style identifier...but that is just rehashing my last post. I shared then that I was now wearing scarves and true turbans, and that even my entire family had not seen my hair. That continued for a week, even after revealing my new cut via my latest YouTube episode; they really do not watch. I finally decided to unveil it to them and it was a mixed reaction, not bad or negative, just maybe taken aback. I still have not posted photos to Instagram or FB, so unless you have seen my video.... OH and just two days ago I shortened the fringe so that it would be less whispy and it removed even more of my faux color, leaving me with just a tinge of blue black on the top. I am now obsessed with berets, scarves, and turbans even more! Especially during the colder months and well I am not ready to unveil to my nail gal either...sometimes it is easier to hide than explain. 

Short hair has me hiding....
*Jean Seberg 

Now when I ordered my turban from Lacey Rose Creations via Etsy, I was not too knowledgeable about them in 1950's or early 60's style, I had seen a few photos, but for the most part I thought of Turbans as a more 1940's style, and of course they were very popular then, they were bigger and elaborate and I often see many of the ladies on Instagram that do the more 1940's look using them to top off their look ....even when I received my turban in the mail in the note card it was mentioned that they were more 1940's. I was curious, so I started doing a bit of research on the subject and collecting images. Now I do not mind rolling in a bit of the 1940's to my look, you have all seen me with a scarf on ala "Rosie the Riveter" , but that seems more accepted and the norm and is done with a  chiffon scarf or bandanna style scarf. I was amazed at how many images I did find that was women from the 1950s wearing turbans. 

Wearing a chiffon scarf ala Rosie
*brooch and earrings from
Housewife Chic by Ruby on Etsy 
If you are not familiar with the definition of the turban, here is a break down.... The word Turban is a description of a millinery design where fabric is wrapped and twisted and secured to create a turban/head wear that is now closely molded to the head.  It usually covers most or all of the hair. Of course how it looks, how big, be it stuffed, stiffened or adorned depends on the era, or fashion choices or even  ethnic/religious groups that may be wearing one. Turbans have been worn by women since as early as the 18th century, perhaps even further back, and there has been varieties of turbans through to modern day and not just by retro/vintage women or by women forced to cover their head due to health, religious or cultural reasons. 

Examples of turbans over the years in Hollywood
So what about in my style pocket, the 1950's ? Well, draped turbans sbegan to regain popularity again in the mid 1950s .  The Times reported in 1955, upon a ensemble designed by Dior that was  compromised of a sheath dress created in brocaded silk, with a  matching jacket trimmed with sable fur and then as a finishing touch a brocade silk draped turban. Turban styles were adapted to accommodate more bouffant hair styles. There was also a report of  Milliner Claude Saint-Cyr , who was in charge of designing hats for the Queen. One that was mentioned within all my research was a soft "supple" felt turban created in 1956, that covered the ears and rose to a draped peak at the back of the head. Similar if not the one to the one in this photo from 1960/

The Queen with Harold Macmillan in November 1960
Photo found via google search and not owned by me. 

I can imagine that if the queen wore it, it would not be long before a style firestorm would begin and many a woman would work a turban into their wardrobe, much like how women in the states followed the starlets and first ladies to guide how they dressed in their own life. That has not changed, don't we all still look up to those in the public eye to inspire what we wish to look like and how we dress? But I digress. This is about the fact that I am now trying to embrace my grey, but getting started on that path ( yet again) and do it in a drastic way; by cutting off all my hair. The thing is I still want that feeling of being chic and retro ( in my own eyes), and avoid a lot of explanation when I go out and run into people I know, or when I post photos to social media. This is also about me trying to cope with how I feel when I look in the mirror having just recently having had hair and a hair color that inspired others, and was an instant visual that represented to others and even to myself that I was a retro/vintage lady, even if in just a pair of jeans and a T shirt. Having hair this short , although it being something women did have in the 1950's as photos ( all of starlets mind you) I shared in my last post showed , for me , in my eyes, when I look in the mirror does not scream 1950's. Askewed thinking, yes, but it is what bounces around in my head. So turbans and scarves ala Rosie it is, at least for a couple months when the buzzed portion lengthens and softens a bit. At least now know that turbans ARE something that was around and worn quite a bit in the 1950's so I can feel a bit more like myself while I follow this path of embracing grey and my new much shorter hair.