Monday, March 29, 2010

Dear Feline Squamous Cell Carcinoma...

Listen you son-of-a-bitch, you may be mean...but I'm MEANER!

Yeah, you're gonna "win" this one, but not without a fight mutherfucker. You WILL NOT take my cat without a fight. You WILL NOT inflict your pain. WE WILL FIGHT you even if it just means we keep her comfortable and help her pass before you cause unspeakable destruction.

You picked the wrong cat!
See you at the surgical consult you prick bastard!

Squamous Cell Carcinoma is a big, bad cancer that affects feline nasal/oral areas. Rory, Raziel Reign's Once Upon A Dream, my bronze spotted Egyptian Mau, had a lesion on her nose pad that wasn't healing right. I thought it was because she kept rubbing it. Lesion, drooling, rubbing their mouths...all suspect signs of oral and/or nasal tumors. 99.9% of the time it's squamous cell carcinoma. Only a biopsy will say for certain, but odds are good this is what Rory has. I had looked in her mouth a few times and saw vet saw a tumor way back on the base of her tongue and another spread under her toungue inside her jawline. I have a consult with a surgeon but realistically, the one on her tongue is in a very, very bad place that is not condusive to surgery. So, I go into this knowing there may not be a surgical solution to extending her life. There is a procedure called a mandibulectomy (removal of all or portion of the jaw). While it's really successful when combined with radiation in's not so hot with felines, typically extending life for another 5-7 months. Not sure I'd put her through such a drastic surgery and recovery to attempt a few more months. I'm really struggling to weigh treatment/prognosis/quality of life...hopefully the surgeon can guide me a bit on Thursday.

I have read about an NSAID called Piroxicam, to aleviate pain and reduce inflamation. It's used for prostrate cancer in human applications. This may be the best I can hope for. I'm also reading about chemo drugs being injected into the lesion on her nose to slow things down. I'll do what I can...anything except allow her to suffer.

Rory is only 9 years old, she's still got life in her eyes, bumps and purrs, still eating well...if you didn't see her nose deteriorating and notice the drool, you wouldn't think a think was wrong...for now.

If you don't already...have your vet do an oral exam each visit, ask about an annual dental...finding a squamous cell tumor EARLY makes a ton of difference!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

This Summer...

This Summer I won't make excuses.

This Summer I won't hide in the house.

This Summer I won't wear the modern matron uniform of stretch pants and a baggy T.

This Summer I will "Wake up...Look cute...and Love myself!"
*Thanks Mary Deluxe and Desi Mother Superior of Bus Stop Goddesses Everywhere*

Yellow is not by best color, but when you shop CURVY vintage swimsuits, you learn to live with compromise. I wanted real vintage, not repro and these two were in my price range ($40). Plus size vintage swimwear, actually name label vintage swimwear is really up, up, up there $! I will say this...if you can find an Alix of Miami in your size and you have the budget, go for it. They are gorgeous...just google around or search Zeebay for some amazing examples.

Larger View
Larger View

I figure these are closer to the 60's but I think they are cute. I found the green/yellow multi playsuit on Etsy. It isn't labeled, that I know of. The yellow suit is a "Muriel" Swim and Sun. I like the girly ties on the skirt (and that it covers my bum and thighs...giggle). I found it at That Girl! Vintage. She has others but some just look like modest skirted modern examples. There are, however, a couple of vintage Gabar worth looking at. The best part is they are under $100.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Minky Sphynxy!

New pictures of my baby girl from Tracy at NoCoatsKitty

Larger view here
You'll notice she's looking like a bald Siamese these days. Well, she sort of is, but not quite. Siamese are Pointed which refers to a color pattern that restricts the pigment to the tips of ears, nose, tail and toes. There are Pointed Sphynx kitties, but my baby isn't truly a pointed kitty. She's a MINK which is another type of pattern. Her SEAL color won't be totally restricted to points but shaded over her entire body. I think she gets to keep the dark smudge on her nose though. :)

Her eyes are such an amazing blue, but that's just her baby coloring. Because she is a MINK, she won't have blue eyes as an adult...I'm expecting a lovely change over the next few weeks and will share it as soon as her true eye color starts to emerge.

Still no purrfect name jumping out.
Sabrina or Prunella are still options...but Astrid, Starla. I'm getting a celestial or glam sort of vibe from this little Starlet...hmmm, maybe Starla would be good.

Get In The Drecipe!

Anybody remember Susan Powter of "Stop the Insanity" infomercial fame?

Her Black Bean Salad is one of my favorites, quick, easy, no culinary skills required dishes.

I dub this a "Get in the Drecipe"
Get it?...Dress-i-pee

Susan Powter's Black Bean Salad
1 16oz can black beans (or dried beans cooked and seasoned) *I rinse my canned beans
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped red onion (I leave out the onion)
1/4 cup picante sauce (I sub Newman's Own Garden Salsa which is one of the lowest sodium prepared salsas I can find on my supermarket shelf)
2 tablespoons no-oil Italian dressing (I use Non Fat Italian)

In it's original state:
Serves 4
Calories 140
Fat .5 gm
3% fat

Mix it all up in a container and store it in the fridge. That's it!

I've topped garden salads with it. I've used it cold inside a whole wheat tortilla with shredded lettuce and diced tomato to make a lunch time wrapper. I've heated it up and added a smidge of mexican cheese and set it up in flour tortillas for a hot dinner. I've even used up a couple left over chicken strips by chopping them up and adding it. Susan says you can even heat the original recipe and eat it like a chunky soup.

Tonight, I'm actually having black beans with chick peas and corn in a recipe my Mom nabbed from a TV show. It is soooo delish! I'll have her write it down and share it with you sometime.

If you have a fav Get In The Drecipe, please share!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

NSB: "Wait!...I can explain."

I was really, really good yesterday and today. I only bid on and won a desperately needed OB Girdle. It was a thought out, planned purchase and I got it for much less than I had expected. I was really happy with me!

Then I saw it, a yummy pink and lace confection of a dress that I need like a hole in my head (or pocketbook). I tried to resist, I really tried. Then I thought about the other two dresses that I resisted that were scarfed up and listed for sale elsewhere at 3 to 5 times the auction price. I looked at "my" dress and figured if I didn't move, she'd end up there too, far away from the financial reach of those who would love her best. I had to save her. You see? (Don't worry...I'm not buying this either!)

The truth is, I thought it was a really pretty dress and I did give myself one pass for a useless dressy-dress. I find it really hard to find this kind of stuff in my size and I know it's not something I could make myself in this lifetime or the next. I indulged. I have nothing against sellers making a profit. Heck, I worked commissioned sales for 20 years. It's just that really pretty plus size vintage is sometimes hard to come by. I'm tired of watching these dresses go for $70-$100 at auction and end up for sale at over $300 in a zip code I'm too poor to even speak, let alone live in. It's just nice, if once in a while, we regular girls can nab one of these dresses ourselves...even if we'll be so broke we'll have to wear it at home...eating Ramen Noodles for dinner.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Is It Sew Wrong?

I am not a crafty person.
My Gram sewed a bit, mostly alterations necessitated by the vertical challenge of just missing the 5' mark. She taught my Aunt Mollie a bit and if we blow out the cob webs, I'll bet my Aunt could still deliver the basics. My Mom is completely devoid of both the sewing and shopping genes. (Try growing up with that!) Me? I'd like to learn! It sure would be nice to just make a great dress instead of going blind and bankrupt watching auctions go down on LeBay! I have a big sewing basket, with practically nothing in it, stashed in the back of a closet from over a decade ago. Come to think of it, I might have a huge instruction book too.

I've gathered the few patterns I have. The plan was to start with the nighty because it doesn't have to turn out perfect to sleep in it. Then I decided to start with a smaller project, the hat and purse pattern. Well, I read it over for an hour today and I'm on the fence. There are a lot of tiny details to the hat that I might not be ready for, including a crinoline backing for rigidity. Seriously, I spent 10 minutes trying to figure out if there was a bonus slip pattern for the crinoline yardage called for or if there was some ruffled version I wasn't seeing! LOL The other item I'd really like to get cracking on is the short sleeve version of the blouse, minus the monogram. I think it would be really practical!

I tried looking at fabrics online but to little avail. I did find one super bit of1940's red print fabric. It's not enough to make the hat, but I might be able to just squeeze out the purse! We shall see. I didn't like a single fabric for my nighty so I will have to brave the brick-and-mortor stores. (Ex-retail junkies seldom like to hang out in stores for any length of time...sigh.) There was one cherry or berry print on white fabric that I thought would look cute for the blouse. I don't like super thin fabric that you can see your hand and bra through. So, that project will require in-person selections too.

Finally, the NSB may have to be revamped to accommodate a little starter sewing machine...or possibly just dogear any $ I might get on my tax returns. And then there's buttons and trim and pinking shears and... Oh noooooo!!!!!

Some others for your viewing pleasure:


Campbell's Soup may be "Mmmm-Mmmm Good" but vintage McCall's are "Mmmm-Mmmm Better"!

March 1952
The cover is so beautiful! What I wouldn't give to look like her!

April 1955
See the pretty girls on the cover? The article is titled "The Eleven Bustiest Models". I can't wait to see if their dimensions are listed as well as any fashion hints for the curvier amongst us!

May 1958
Maybe '58 is my year? I sure do seem to acquire issues from this year.

...and no, I don't think these are NSB approved. Let's just think of them as "research" or "learning materials". Education is always a smart investment! ;)

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Just Shoe'T Me...

As you all know by now, I'm participating in NSB. The concept of No Spender Bender has been tweaked a bit for my goals and dubbed the No Stupid Spending experiment for March. Shoes are definitely one of my green light items. I can't wear any of my vintage purchases until I get myself some shoes. (...and I'll be damned if I let my fabulous Freddies collect dust!)

First up, UGG "Mar" espadrilles.

I love espadrilles, but having heavier calves (genetics and 20 years of standing in retail) the massive amounts of tie wrapping doesn't flatter me. I'm hoping this single ankle tie will do it. Loving the peep toe and the peep heel! Oh, and won't the girly cousins, my juniors by 20 years, think old cuz Skidoo is oh-so-cool to sport UGG! LOL

Next up, a basic pair of black peep toe sling-backs.

Okay, so it's just your basic, nothing-fancy sort of shoe. That's exactly what I need! I took a risk with the size and the heel. I used to wear an 8M in this brand all the time so that's what I ordered. I even tried on an old pair to be sure. If the new pair don't fit then I know to bump to the 8.5 when I order the other pairs I have my eyes on. The heel is 3" so my body is going to have to recall how I used to get about in these things, lol. I almost wimped out for a closed toe and lower heel but I knew it wasn't going to give me the right look/line. I also think this pair will work with my black Dofan handbag.

***As an aside, my shoe shopping effort has brought back all sorts of fun memories shopping with my Gram. She always wore those ugly old lady peep-toe, ankle-strap, damn shoes and I always told her how ugly and old lady they were. Little did I know those shoes were the epitome of chic in her era. Isn't it funny that those same shoes have me drooling these days? Isn't it a shame she's not here to go shoe shopping or to say "I told you so"? Oh, the damage we girls could do! Me and my Gram and a shoe store! Love you Grammy...and thank you for teaching me about hats/gloves, shoes/purses, what fork to use, how to clean a house and all those important lessons...oh, and for helping me cut the bottoms from my burnt cookies and pretending they were delicious anyway.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A REAL Pin-Up Kitten...

My little naked Pin-Up Kitten for your viewing pleasure!

Believe it or not, they make sweaters for these little guys and gals because they get chilly with no fur to protect them. So, she really could be a Sweater Girl! Hmmmm...Pin-Up, Sweater Girl, Bombshell. I will have to keep these in mind for her registered name. Still working on her call name though. Prunella, Sabrina and Harlow are on the list.

If you'd like to drool over even more Sphynx kitties, visit Tracy's site at NoCoatKitty.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Dude, what's your BASIC?

NSB = No Spender Bender

Since I'm actually trying to build (rebuild) an everyday wardrobe, I do spend. I just try to focus my spending and pull the reins in just a little. So, in Skidoo world, NSB = No Stupid Buying

Alas, this means the two gorgeous party dresses I'm stalking are sort of off limits. I did give myself a free pass to indulge in one useless-for-my-lifestyle party dress, but ya know what? I don't feel like using it. (Victory is Mine!)

So, what's my BASIC?

Ship N Shore Plaid Blouse (Me thinks she works to the Freddie's)

Ship N Shore Yellow Blouse (Love the Peter Pan collar)

Carol Brent Summer Dress (Not quite everyday but better than taffeta and rhinestones)

Handknit (so they say) Cardi (to cover the upper arm phlab when wearing dress above)

White Knit Cardi (versatile and too cute to pass up)

...and now, just some random thought for today because I don't want to post three blogs in a row. It won't decrease my rambling, just makes me feel better to say I only posted twice, lol.

Today started off really sucky! I found one of my holy grails (a very specific 1940's compact) that was in great shape and nobody but me was interested. I got up at 7:30am just to keep an eye on it. Some (be nice Skidoo) collector just had to have it and spent the last few seconds of the auction driving me to my max bid. I could have fought, I could have bid more, but piss on it. I'm not breaking the bank on something that will sit in my vanity drawer or stay tucked in my purse. I decided I'd rather have the dough for REAL I was able to buy the Carol Brent dress with what I didn't spend on the compact. Go me! Go NSB!

Two of my purses arrived. The satin formal Koret, to-die-for! Plus, it came with a GEN-U-WINE blue tissue from the era and a couple of hair pins AND a freaking folding comb that the seller didn't know were in there or didn't care. The white leather Koret, on the other hand, is pretty filthy. I used a little spit and it does clean up, but I don't know how to really, safely clean it. The spit works, but I don't have that much to clean this puppy. I think it was from the same person who owned the satin bag because it was hiding a few of the same hair pins AND one wicked pointed metal nail file in a plastic sheath. Talk about self protection! All I can think is that the bar scene must have been really rough for a decked out dame in the 50's and 60's! I'll bet nobody pinched her ass twice and lived to talk about it. :)

I finally found time to open some Pre-NSB packages. My new Blue Bird Pillowcases are gorgeous and feel so so good. I <3 worn muslin! My 1950's hat and purse pattern came. I was going to make my very first sewing project the 1950's night gown pattern I purchased but I think I might go for the hat/purse first as it's small enough to hand stitch. Not sure how that will go. I do remember sewing a Barbie dress as a kid, accidentally stitching it to my PJ leg and whailing when my Mom had to break out the seam ripper. Even back then, I was the type of willful (control freak?) perfectionist child that just sort of figured fuck it, it's ruined and I want NO part of it now. Common' Mom, would it really have been so bad to have Barbie clad in her new dress hanging from my PJ's? You wouldn't have to yell at me to clean up my toys.

Speaking of PJ's...OMG...I scored a pair of Tom Girl 1950's short sleeve pajamas in a little blue rose bud print. I love Tom Girl PJ's but never find them in my size. (I love them so much that I even hesitate to mention the label so there are more for me...pardon me whilst I cackle and wring my greedy hands) PJ's are actually NOT on my NSB approved list but hey, what am I gonna do, scold myself? Aren't they too darling in that straight, good girl next door, Sandra Dee sort of way?

Freddie's of Pinewood...PG Rating!

*Photos from the Freddie's of Pinewood website!


Who knew when you ordered from Freddie's of Pinewood, famous for their vintage repro denim, that you'd also get a free side order of TOURETTE'S! You know, that neuro syndrome that makes people cuss uncontrollably. (Uh...not that I need a syndrome to inspire me.)

First, I looked at the return address on the box and muttered, "What the Hell did I order from Texas?" Then I opened the box and my Freddie's slipped out. I stripped faster than I would for Cary Grant or George Clooney! It took me a second to figure out where the zipper was, but I had my Classic Relaxed Fit Freddie's on on a flash. Damn! Denim is cold when it sits on your porch this time of year! Anyway, I jumped up on the bed so I could see them in my vanity mirror. (I don't have a full length mirror so I have to stand on the bed to see anything below my waist.) That's when it started...uncontrollable F-Bombs and Explatives. French this and French that! Where the French is my ass? Where the French is my gut? Holy French Balls, I think I like this high waist! Frenchity, French-French-French, these jeans feel goooooood! Next, I tried on my Dungaree Dolls and the highly colorful superlatives continued. Needless to say, I am seriously pleased with my purchase! I hope I can add the Utility and maybe try the Pedal Pushers some time.

Curvy Girl Alert:
I'm 5'4" 42 bust, 37 waist (34 if I suck it in), and roughly 47 inch hips.
I ordered the Classic Relaxed in 38/48 and the Dungaree Dolls in 38.

Classic Relaxed: Waist is a teensy big but good for tucking in layers. Belted, it should be just fine as it isn't so big that I'll have a ton of excess fabric bunched up or gapping when I sit. The hips were perfecto! They are actually a little roomy which allows for a nice drape and a clean, no bump, no buldge line. I do have a little pooch of fabric under the tummy and above the crotch (you guess where THAT is, lol) but I think that is a combo of the loose fit and the way my tummy directs the fabric. A little support garment probably wouldn't hurt, but it's not worrisome enough to really make me grab for a girdle. The legs are more than roomy enough even for my thunder thighs. I only rolled them up twice at the hem and it's not a huge cuff either so I won't be looking to hem these at all.

Dungaree Dolls: Waist is more fitted than in the Classic. Below the waist is a good fit, not too tight, not too loose. The legs are roomy plus. I will say, as others have, that I need to move the buttons on the straps. I criss-crossed them and still have about 2 inches of extra lead. I didn't roll these when I tried them on so I'm not sure if they need to be hemmed a bit or not. I do know I will wash them prior to any alteration as some of the Vintage Dolls on FL have mentioned they shrink a little in length. These make me want to run SCREAMING to find a Red Snood!

Bottom line: I am beyond pleased! Both with the product and with the level of customer service from Freddie's of Pinewood. (Remember, I used to be a retail manager so if somebody drops the ball on service, they're toast in my book.) I really can't believe the difference in how I look and how I feel in vintage cut vs modern jeans.

I'd post pics of me in the Freddies, but I don't have any tops or the right shoes! Suggestions welcome!