Monday Musings – Shoe Proportion and Bad Decisions

I wore this oversized, long, fairly shapeless Artist Smock out to dinner on Friday night. I LOVE this shirt, but it’s not easy to style in a flattering way. As I was getting dressed, I realized I didn’t have the right footwear. We’ve talked about shoes a lot over the last few weeks, so why stop now?


This outfit needed a visually heavier shoe to balance the shirt, and I wanted it to be a casual sneaker. My lifestyle is so relaxed now that sneakers are acceptable everywhere. I’ve taken to looking at women’s feet wherever I am to check out what they’re wearing. More times than not, it’s some sort of athletic shoe. In hindsight, I could have worn my retro sneakers, but they got moved while reorganizing my closet, and since I didn’t see the box, I forgot I had them.

I forgot a coat, so my husband lent me his puffer vest to wear from the car to the restaurant. Even though his vest is oversized and enormous on me, it seems to have less visual bulk than the white shirt. Because it’s black and has a lower value contrast with my dark blue pants, it just seems better, but it still needs a heavier shoe for balance. I’ve ordered these platforms from Adidas, which have great reviews.

Dazzle Dry

I decided it might be a good idea to try a salon gel manicure right before the holidays. Regular nail polish chips in 1-2 days, so I thought a professional option might be a time saver. It was a very bad decision. Most people get 2-3 weeks from their gel manicures. I only got eight days before it started chipping and looking tacky. I had it redone three times, 10 days apart, and each time they used the sanding drill to “smooth” my nails which totally destroyed them.


Then I read about Dazzle Dry, which is totally non-toxic, requires no light for curing, and comes off with regular polish remover. A local salon offered a Dazzle Dry manicure, but they wanted $60 for it. This isn’t my first goat rodeo, so I knew it would never be worth that price on my nails. Then I spotted this mini kit on Amazon and decided I could risk that amount to try and do it myself at home. I watched their “how to” video here, which looked fairly simple.


There are several steps, but they dry very quickly, so the entire process is fast…much quicker than driving to a salon, and it feels more sanitary too. My first week, the polish lasted four days which is a record! The second go-around lasted 8 days which is huge for me! I’ve been so happy with these results I decided to spring for the full-sized options for each one. They offer tons of colors and lots of “mini flights,” which are a great way to experiment with colors. I packed the mini kit to bring to Miami because it’s so tiny and portable.



A reader once commented they were grateful I didn’t write about my grandson or food because they only read my blog for fashion. That’s lovely for her, but I’m beginning to feel this blog is getting a bit one-dimensional. At the risk of alienating that reader, I may begin sharing a few favorite recipes going forward. Part of a life well lived and healthy aging includes food choices, exercise, mindful practices, travel, and what we wear.

After having the Brussels Sprouts at Dr. Andrew Weil’s restaurant, I ordered his cookbook which looks amazing. It has so many great recipes that we’re excited to try. The problem is, the above recipe isn’t included. I did find a recipe that sounds just like what we ate, here. They were amazingly good. I never knew the best brussels sprouts were the small ones…did you? Proof positive that this will never become a food blog 🤣.

What else would you like me to cover here?

Thanks for reading; being the best part of this community, and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.


  1. I’d love to hear about your grandson, and always love healthy, easy, good tasting recipes, and simple decor ideas. I’ve been doing a lot of sheet pan meals, lately, and always include brussel sprouts if I have them on hand. Some of the frozen brussel sprouts are really good, too, if one doesn’t have fresh on hand. I just add them to my sheet pan meal, same as fresh. Shoes, one of my favorite topics! 🙂 I have such troublesome feet, having had foot surgery at a young age. I believe it was you who spoke, some time ago, about taking time off from walking due to foot issues?? I finally found a sneaker that I can walk in forever, and every day. They are the Hoka brand and I wear them daily for walking and around my house, on my hard, tiled floors. They have several different models, geared to specific needs. I do wear full orthotics in mine, but that wouldn’t be necessary for a lot of people. I usually buy the Bondi 7 model, although they’ve now come out with a Bondi 8, which I’m excited to try. I went to a local store for my first pair, so I could try on several models. I did buy a black with white sole, this winter, as I thought I could work that into some outfits, as many of the models are not likely to go well with most outfits I’d wear out of the house, other than for exercise. I love my black and white Arahi model and can work them into some casual outfits, but they don’t have the cushioning I’d like when walking over 10,000 steps a day. Love your posts! Thank you!

    1. Those sound like winners! Thanks for sharing them.

    2. I like to see different subjects. I have two grandsons and I talk about them all of the time and if someone does not like it they don’t have to hear or read about them. I also like different food ideas. Your post do not just have to be about fashion and cosmetics. after all your blog is a well styled life which includes everything

  2. I find that you know new products before I do. Also, home and garden interests me, also. Your interest in health and wellness has been a benefit to me. Just keep on keeping on!

  3. Paula Craig says:

    Wow, thks for this post I never thought abt shoes balancing out an outfit. Your blog is making me so aware of how I put my outfits together! Thank you! Have fun in Miami with the girls and I like everything you write about!! I need it ALL!! Happy Valentine’s Day!!

  4. My manicurist dose not up charge for Dazzel Dry. But as good as it is I find the Essie Gel Couture lasts longer (done in salon or at home) and is only 2 steps without a light. (Easy peasy touch ups to make 3 weeks.) I think my “nail chemistry” is more compatible with the Essie formula.

  5. I read your blog and enjoy it. It’s always interesting to me when you share your day trips or longer trips and I am always interested in book or movie reviews. Thanks.

  6. The blue scarf is really pretty with the white shirt – you look “dazzling”!
    And I love good healthy recipes like the brussel sprouts one you have here. I’m going to order Dazzle Dry today – thank you for letting me know about it.

  7. Jennifer! Please, write what makes you feel comfortable. 🙂 I look forward to anything you deem worthy to share. Since I found your blog, my world has gotten a little bit bigger. Thank you.

    1. Thanks for being here, Glynis

  8. I agree with everyone above that you should write about what interests you. I always find it interesting and helpful! You do you!

    1. I’m totally in agreement in Susan. “You do you”.

    2. I agree with Susan and Yvonne! You do you!

      1. @ Susan, Yvonne & Terry – My sentiments as well.
        @ Jennifer – Re your Artist Smock , have you tried cinching it with a belt and pairing it with comfortable loafers? -Brenda-

      2. I haven’t tried a belt but I will!

  9. Pat Patterson says:

    Thanks so much for the recommendation of home manicure. I stopped going to the nail salon because they refused to stop using the drill on my nails & cuticles. Also, I like the idea of recipe and menu ideas as I do a lot of cooking.
    I would like some recommendations on how to wear the pretty scarfs I have and just can’t seem to get the hang of it.
    Great day to you and all the ladies on the blog 😍

    1. Yes! A scarf tutorial please!
      And advise on what to wear in Vegas, Nantucket, or other vacation areas.

  10. I think it’s great to add a recipe here and there! Sometimes all fashion can get a bit boring and I’d think it could be hard to come up with new stuff every day. We love the roasted brussel sprouts and I make them a lot in fall when I can get them fresh locally here in Lancaster, PA. Butternut squash is also terrific roasted in the oven. I make up my own recipe. For the brussel sprouts, if they are on the large size just cut them in half. Then I like to add chucks of cut up onion and whole mushrooms. I put everything in a gallon bag and add in some olive oil and balsamic vinegar and toss everything around in the closed bag. Then spread everything out on a large pan lined with parchment paper and sprinkle with your favorite salt and fresh ground pepper. Bake in the oven, I’m thinking around 400 till tender, turning every now and then. Sorry this got a little long! LOL. Anyway, you do a great job here and pretty sure that everyone who shops likes to eat too!!

    1. Pat Patterson says:

      Cindy, I enjoy roasted brussel sprouts all year. For a change, I do them in my cast iron skillet, towards the end of sautéing them when they have darkened and have a nice crust I add aged balsamic vinegar. They are so delicious!

  11. Hi Jennifer,

    I love to hear about other peoples families and how they live. Love the recipe idea too. Plus, decorating is a great idea love to see how other people decorate. You are doing a fantastic job Jennifer. May God Bless you and your family.


  12. I’m sure I’ll enjoy whatever you choose to post about – bring it on! I like your flowy shirt with ballet flats… both have a lightness that make me think of dancing so they’re complementary. Dazzle Dry question… does it have the typical nail polish odor? For some reason I just can’t tolerate that any longer. The only system I’ve found with virtually no scent is Sophi Nail Polish. It doesn’t have long-lasting power on fingernails (but does last a very long time on toes) so I apply it for special occasions. It’s worth it to me for no headache. Pretty colors too. This worrisome article caught my eye last week:

    1. The Dazzle Dry has zero odor. The prep does smell

    2. I agree. I really like the white shirt, leggings and ballet shoes. I love ballet shoes and interesting loafers. The bright scarf adds interest. I haven’t yet gotten on the heavy shoe bandwagon. Someday I will have to try some on.

      1. I agree. I think the ballet flats are fine. I don’t understand why you do not Jennifer. I’d like to see an update….and No I do not find the blog one dimensional. Still can’t get enough fashion!

  13. Those brussels sprouts made my mouth water. I love them, and actually only buy the little ones, they are so tender. I have an extremely picky husband, so most fun cook books are wasted on me but every once in a while I manage to get something different served.
    I just heard about Dazzle Dry a couple weeks ago when I was researching products and help for really ridged nails. The ridge filler from them is a tedious job, but the rest of the products are great due to the fast drying time. I am using the OPI ridge filler for now, a couple coats then polish. Since I like to change my polish a couple times a week, I do use a lot of oils etc to keep them healthy. Jennifer, if you like to post about your adorable family, feel free, I like to see how that side of your life is chugging along as well. You are a well rounded “friend” that we chat with so to speak. I have tried many of the books and products that you talk about, and many are not for me, but someone else will get the benefit of those I am sure. Keep up your special style.

  14. Thanks for the information on nail polish option. I’m trying to go to a more plants based diet and found a cookbook that is REAL, meaning I actually want to fix (easily!) and eat the food: Plant You by Caleigh Bodrug. Might be something to share here. I love your blog as is, but having health and nutrition information would be an added bonus.

  15. carolyn lassonde says:

    Please include recipes along with stories of your grandson! As a grandmother of a grandson, I would love to hear about him! I’m a vegetarian, so if you come across good vegetarian recipes, I would appreciate it if you would focus on them every so often.

    1. Will do. I love great vegetarian meals.

  16. It can be tedious writing about the same things every day. I agree with a previous poster- write what you’d like.

    You mentioned before that you were once associated with Artful Home. As I’m finding my wardrobe becoming a bit boring, have purchased some of their tops for an upcoming trip. And, I love statement necklaces, even though the fashionista’s tell me they are “out.” Love some of my standout necklaces from AH.

    1. If you love it, wear it! AH has some fabulous pieces.

  17. I love everything you write about on your blog. I have trouble with keeping nail polish on so I appreciate that info and would love to try the kits. I’ve decided to quit ordering shoes on line. I am always returning them so I really need to try them on. I never get tired of fashion but food is a great topic too.

  18. It’s community that we seek and share, regardless of topic. The more the merrier!

  19. Jean Holt says:

    It’s the complete package. I love reading all the fashion, beauty and helpful suggestions that encompass our daily lives. I will keep reading. Thank you.

  20. I’ve had great results from press-on nail polish from Lily & Fox. They’re not press-on nails, but actual polish strips. It takes a little practice but they really last. My nails are not in good shape and these do the trick.

    1. I’ve never heard of them! Thanks for sharing the tip

  21. Im always looking for healthy recipes. Would also like to see more beauty tips. My nails were also wrecked using gel manicures so I will try dazzle dry.

    1. I’m anxious to see how long this will stay on after all the damage and deep filing gouges have grown out.

      1. Hi, Jennifer. I found your idea of balancing footwear with an outfit interesting, and something I hadn’t considered. Please give us more examples, comparing balanced with unbalanced and explaining why. I’d like suggestions on how to freshen the look of things we already have, like pearls, scarves and brooches, so we can look current while enjoying these things that have special meaning/memories.

        The past several months, I’ve stopped wearing fingernail polish and just buffed and groomed my nails instead, and I’m pleased how much healthier and stronger they are. With gardening, cooking and just regular house cleaning, I can’t make a coloured nail polish last more than a day or so, so this works better for me. Not nearly as much fun as different colours, but I look well groomed for much longer.

  22. Dipped nails work for me. I’ve never had a chip, and they last a month. Virtually everything you write about feels relevant to me, so recipes sound like a great idea from time to time.

    1. She told me dipped wouldn’t work better on me because my nails are so soft.

  23. I enjoy reading all your topics Jennifer. If you’re musing about food, happy to hear your thoughts. It is a key part of a healthy life-style and the ensuing reader convo’s are also a way to share tips.

    1. I love my readers’ comments. You ladies are full of such wisdom!

  24. I discovered Dazzle Dry at a salon in Marina del Rey. We were on a month long road trip that included 3 days there for a wedding and I booked myself a mani/pedi. The manicurist asked if I wanted regular polish or Dazzle Dry and I opted to give it a try. It dries completely in 5 minutes!!! I have often messed up one or more nails because I am too impatient when my nails are drying. I find it nearly impossible to sit for long enough for regular polish to fully dry and harden, with both hands “out of commission” so to speak. What does one do with no hands? Anyway. I fell in love with Dazzle Dry. It is pricey to purchase the whole system, but once you buy from them, you’ll get notified of sales and special deals. I have also purchased Dazzle Dry on Amazon, but if you go to their website, you’ll find more colors and full descriptions that will let you know if the color is sheer, semi-sheer, or full coverage. Now even when I go to the nail salon for a mani/pedi, I take the whole system and have the manicurist use it.

    1. So happy to hear you love it too!

  25. I love seeing recipes as well as wellness, beauty, fashion.
    Here is what I made last night. I love Brussel Sprouts, but my husband is not as keen. He loved this:
    I cannot even imagine thinking of balancing shoes and my outfit. I just wear what I think will work for what I am going to be doing haha! Sometimes it all seems so overwhelming.

  26. Agreed, the top is calling for more shoe, but how will the ankle pants look with your new sneakers? Please show us the same pants, but with some different shoe options when you get your shoes rearranged. I’m heading toward clear shoe boxes so I can see what I have.

    1. I will share. I may choose longer pants with that sneaker.

  27. I think a well styled life includes food and other musings, so I will keep reading!

  28. Jennifer,
    Write about whatever you like, it’s your blog. Fashion, beauty, food, your grandson, I enjoy it all as many of us do 🥰
    Nancy T.

  29. Deborah B says:

    Thanks for pointing out something we don’t often think about – shoes to balance our outfit. I love ballet flats and tennis shoes and will think more logically about which best fits my outfit. (I will read no matter which topics you write about 😉)

  30. Great musings today, Jennifer! I love that you’ll branch out to food, home and wellness. Your tips on fashion are wonderful but obviously there is more to all of us than fashion. You go!!

      1. While I do enjoy staying current on fashion, I love the whole lifestyle concept since I spend much more time on the food, home, travel, family, health and social aspects of lifestyle. Fashion trends, how to wear items and colors, etc., and new hair and skin product finds are helpful too and I enjoy the ideas and images you post and of course your personality that comes across so friendly and relatable. Thanks for it all!

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