Versatile Style by Tracey

Archive for August 2015

I have NEVER fried food for my family….

I’ve always baked things like fries or chicken….

That is until I was watching Evine Live and saw this: 

455-155- Cook's Companion® 1500W Digital Air Fryer w/ Eight Cooking Modes

Cook’s Companion Air Fryer found HERE

It arrived today (Weds) and I can not stop trying it out.  

We first tried Popcorn chicken and french fries for my son’s lunch…

Oh my goodness, it was incredible , real crispy fries and chicken out of MY KITCHEN

But wait there is MORE , THIS BABY: Toasts, Bakes, Frys , Steams. Grills and Stir Frys.  

I put a slice of bread in to try toasting and after biting into ran to my son and made him take a bite, then to my husband who had just finished brushing his teeth and insisted he try a bite… 

Yes I got that excited over perfectly toasted bread , like I get in a restaurant!  

I wasn’t done…

I had leftover wings from delivery last night…

I heated them on Fry for just half the time recommended as they were already cooked, but I wanted to reheat.

It was fabulous, still like fried wings not like reheated in the microwave. 

That turned out so well, I Baked a slice of leftover pizza , but reduced the temp to 275 and again the time to just 4 min…

and it again was so much better than a microwave….

I may just have replaced my toaster, microwave, steamer and toaster oven in additon to gaining the ability to 

have Fried foods without the unhealthy dunking in oils.. 

My son wants to try churros to surprise his brother when he comes home…so that may be tomorrow’s project! 

 And Now for my Outfit…


I guess if one outfit featuring a shocking pink isn’t enough,

I went for another version the following day, lol…

I was nicknamed, “Pinky” in high school by a guy who noticed

I wore shades of pink and purple a lot…


I love this thrifted poncho and was feeling boho for the day, so

I played off that even more by the addition of a head band and hoop

earrings… I love the gypsy feeling of that.  


This may be to matchy-matchy for some bloggers, but I love outfits featuring 

just two rich colors like this.  


I am grateful to my daughter’s boyfriend for stopping by to pick up a big suitcase full of my daughter’s kitchen items to fly with him as he goes to visit her, saving us the great expense of shipping them.. (we already spent $40 shipping half the items) 

I am grateful to my husband who was getting ready for work when I was going nuts over my new kitchen appliance and coming home and saying that he noticed he wasn’t as enthusiastic at my wonderment as he wished he’d been. He came home and tried several items in it himself just to share again with me…

I am grateful that my birthday is fast approaching as this missing my mom thing and tearing up for the last few weeks is beginning to wear on me and I know after my b’day it will go away.  It’s surprising me how hard her missing this milestone has been these last weeks.  Yep, had to stop and wipe the tears just typing that…

I am grateful for the support of both my husband and son today when I was trying on dresses to find something for my birthday dinner outfit… Not easy when I didn’t lose this darn 15lbs…


Yesterday, After taking a package to mail off to our daughter at graduate school in Boston, 

My husband surprised me with a stop in a wonderful tea shop,


I haven’t worn my soft jogger pants as much this season I did last year.  

DH said he loved them with my Clark’s wedges much better than the flats I wore them 

with last season… 


Quintin’s Tea was a delightful place and we had so much fun smelling all the loose leaf

varieties.  We both chose a flavor and enjoyed a cup in the quaint tea room.  

I ended up buying a Harney & Son’s tin of Birthday Tea, 

which we plan to enjoy on our birthday’s which are just a week apart.  

You can see their website here, but if in the Virginia Beach area , you should stop in just for the experience. 


It was very fun way to spend a lazy summer afternoon.  

I know we will do so again very soon, as I make plans to create a tea and coffee bar .  

My very sentimental husband took a sharpie and wrote the date on the bottom of the tea tin,

to commemorate the event.  


I love this shocking pink shade of my Isaac Mizrahi peplum top

Dear Readers,  I am a day behind because my darn modem was messing up last night.  After hitting it a few times, my son got it back to working again today, lol.  He saved us from going out to buy a new one today….

And now onto my thoughts for this very sad day….

Here in Virginia a gunman shot a reporter and her photographer on live tv 

all on behalf of creating a race war and my heart is very heavy. 

The country that I love that has a strong history of creating social change via 

peaceful protests is in trouble .  

I fear greatly that this is how groups like ISIS are formed by those wanting destruction.  

I pray that some strong leaders come forth to lead in a positive manner to honor 

the legacy of Martin Luther King.  

I don’t get political on my blog, but just wanted to put my prayer for this country out there. 


I am grateful to my DH for investigating and finding a tea shop right in my own neighborhood and surprising me with a fun afternoon. 

I am grateful that my oldest stopped by today for a chat, as he is very busy with school and work. 

I am grateful that my son cooperated and got started back on finishing his Geometry class. 

I am grateful for a fun chat with my daughter and her calling to share her new adventure internship counseling at a brand new charter school.  

I am grateful for the Uber driver who worked with my DD when she requested a ride today, after missing her bus, in the rain and not even knowing where she was to direct the driver (apparently she had to walk away from the bus station due to all the NO STANDING signs to a nearby parking lot)  

Today, I am going to show a few outfits 

I’ve worn recently that I haven’t posted. 


This is what I wore Saturday night for a fabulous night at the Toby Keith concert. 

I wanted to wear a fun dress with a jean vest, but added the leggings for comfort as we 

were sitting in chairs on the lawn.  

That’s not true, I was up dancing for most of the concert and was feeling it the next day, lol. 


A photo my son caught of Toby on stage.

This was the first concert any of my children have ever gone to with us, 

as they always turn us down when we invite them.  

The perks of only having my youngest home….


A navy striped maxi worn with a bright yellow tank and a thrifted embroidered vest, worn

last week and with my rolling shopping cart I use for groceries. 


A lace top I bought from with a pastel blue tank underneath, the tassel necklace is also from

The pants are Old Navy Pixie Pants and the navy laser cut sandals are Vince Camuto.

This was worn last week when we finally got back to a day of bowling after a break of several weeks. 

A fun day , as my son got a new high score. 


What I wore today (Monday)  

Linen shorts and cobalt top I’ve had for awhile as well as Payless Sandals from last year. 

Wearing orange meant my Charming Charlies hat and Dooney & Bourke purse had to come out to play. 

I can’t look at these sandals without remembering that I bought them last year to have more flat options for my broken toe, lol…

Dear Readers, playing catch up was fun… 

I actually spent today , after getting packages ready to send out to my daughter,  playing in my closet and putting together a few outfits.  I have a few evening looks for my birthday trip next weekend, but then I saw my new jogger pants and began finding looks for them based on the ideas from yesterday’s post.  I have three great ones ready, but alas I may have to wait until October to wear any of them, lol.  You know you are truly addicted to fashion when playing in your closet for outfits months away brings you such joy!

So, tell me Dear Readers, am I the only one wishing for Fall to wear new clothes?   


I am grateful for phone calls with my daughter today, love her and miss her bunches and her calling me always makes my day a little brighter.  

I am grateful for a double bonus as my son away at college called to chat about some new kitchen items he purchased for his first apartment.  He even made his first banana bread ( our tradition when we have too many ripe bananas if I am not on a smoothie kick) 

I am grateful that my son will be coming home the end of September for a week as they close the school due to the roads in Richmond closing for the bike race.   

I am grateful that my husband is handy and replaced the outlet that went bad in our room.  

I am grateful that my husband had most of the day off, but still managed to run an evening appointment and sell it! 

I am grateful for the benefits of having just the three of us home, like less trash, less dishes easier dinners (yes, I am a mother who catered somewhat to the tastes of everyone)  and the only child time we are having with our youngest. 

This time of year as my college children, have gone on their way,

And I turn to Homeschooling my youngest,

My thoughts venture to Fall Fashions despite having to wait until 

October to Indulge…

This Season promises to be a very fun one with many silhouette choices ,after a few years of the 

Skinny Jean tucked into boots look seems to reign.  

20 Style Tips On How To Wear Flare Jeans Outfit Ideas |

With the 70’s trend promising to be strong Flares are back in full force.

Blue And Black Casual Chic Outfit

Boot cuts are another option if Flares are a little too much for you…

DG2 by Diane Gilman Fit and Flare Jean with Button Leg

I bought these Diane Gilman ones as they fit my love of Boho style.  

They fit me much like the previous ones pictured, down to the ground if I wear heels , as bootcuts and flares should.

Track pants, blazer, heels

The Sporty Chic trend is still going strong with joggers dressed up 

with blazers and heels. 

Layer a blazer over your most casual pieces for an instant workwear outfit.

Or a more casual version with white sneakers

jogger pants outfit with my diesel wedges could look like this

This version with contrast zippered pockets and stripes offers 

a more sporty look.  Pairing them with booties is another shoe wear option 

that seems to be popular. 

Walk in Wonderland wearing the Offshore Pant #soho #ecoessential #sustainablefashion

Scrunched up to show a little leg and paired with flats is yet another option. 

3 Ways to Wear Joggers by @kendieveryday

A perfect casual Mom on the Go version with a sweater and Classic Jean Jacket 

Women's French-Terry Joggers | Old Navy

I love this trend so much, I indulged in this Old Navy version in both the Rich Red and Black

For the winter, culottes by Gucci. Love it!I

I think Culottes have to be the bottom I am most excited by,

as I loved them in my younger years and am happy they’ve come back around.

720-962- Kate & Mallory® Woven Zipper Front Wide-Leg Boot Split Skirt

I think these are to be treated more like a skirt for Fall/Winter, and 

liked this Kate & Mallory option  in both the grey checked version and black.  

Dear Readers, of course the skinny’s are still a very important part of Fall/Winter style to be tucked into booties or boots.

Old Navy

Since Plaid promises to be big again I opted for this Old Navy version. 

I must say Old Navy Pixie pants have become a favorite of mine. 

These ankle pants will work well with all kinds of shoe and boot choices.  

Women's The Pixie Mid-Rise Ankle Pants | Old NavyOld NavyOld NavyOld NavyOld NavyOld NavyOld Navy

I also added these Old Navy floral pair 

Dear Readers, What Bottom silhouettes have you seen for Fall?  

What pants are you planning to Add?  

Happy Monday!  Wishing Everyone a great start to the week, 

Thanks for stopping by!


I am grateful for a fabulous weekend at the Toby Keith Concert with my husband and youngest son. 

I am grateful for a very relaxing Sunday, catching some sunrays and grilling on the barbecue. 

I am grateful for a phone call with my daughter as she moves out old roommates and moves in the new ones for this last year at Boston College for her master’s degree.  

I am grateful for my daughters view of the world where she said, “I am winning at Life! ” , because she sold two books on ebay that will cover the cost of her books for the next semester.

I am grateful that after a week of walking on his foot, my son’s sprained ankle is healing nicely. 

I am grateful that in just two weeks my shrunken family of 3 will be heading for another fabulous weekend at Massahutten Resort and the anticipation that comes along with impending plans like these that keep us all joyful! ( My Birthday trip)

I wear more animal print in cooler seasons….

I found this simple t-shirt at Walmart one day and thought, 

“Just maybe I can make this work for Summer.”  


There is story behind this tan skirt…

It’s a Chaus one I had for years in a larger size, 

and seriously mourned the loss of when I lost weight. 

I stalked Ebay for quite awhile before, lo an behold there it was in the size I needed.. 

A great khaki skirt is never to be taken for granted for my Mom on the Go life!  


This photo shoot was quite the event and my smile never was quite right…

You see their were just the beginnings of rain drops beginning…

May I say, Huge rain drops falling….

That wasn’t too bad… but then the neighbors on both sides of me were out….

Wait there is more, the mailman was slowly making his way down the opposite side of the street…

Aaah , the woes only a blogger can understand,lol 


I almost forgot to mention that this was just a plain tshirt and

really did nothing for my figure…

I took a rubber band underneath the shirt and gathered some fabric near my hip

to create the gathering, a quick styling trick I use often.  


I recently bought the pink tassel necklace from 

and thought it would be a fun addition to the tan and browns.  

It seemed to add a soft femininity to the look.  

Dear Readers, I was talking to my niece today about her school dress code for middle school in which the girls are not allowed to wear leggings even with long tunics.  I instantly flashed to the mother of 4 girls I had seen at Burlington a few weeks ago.  All her girls were wearing leggings and trying on tops.  The mother was rejecting all that didn’t have enough coverage to wear with the leggings.  I can’t help but think what the cost would be for a mother of so many girls to take leggings out of the picture , requiring a bigger expense for pants.   The people making these rules don’t at all understand what havoc that could wreak on a large family.

 I realize how lucky my niece is to be an only child with my brother as her father, who dotes on her and indulges her love for fashion.  He spent the weekend for hours shopping with her until both their feet were aching.  I love seeing this side of him and how much his relationship mirrors the relationship I had with my father and mother who indulged me that way.

My sentimental side is in full force this time of year as I send mine off to college recognizing how precious this time is when they still come home for Summer.  My oldest has moved out and we see him too infrequently for my liking…I may have to lure him over with a once a month dinner just to get my fix…


I am so grateful for this time with my niece this Summer.  

I am so grateful to witness my brother’s relationship with his daughter and the memories of my father it brings forth.

I am grateful to my niece who actually swept my den and kitchen for me today after my knee began hurting. 

I am grateful for fun time teaching my niece how to play jacks. a game my sister and I were addicted to as kids. 

I am grateful that DH mentioned he liked the leopard t-shirt when he came home last night and then added that he likes me in animal print… He’s never mentioned that before, lol! 

I Can’t believe I wore shorts two days in a row, lol..

I am not a big fan of them and less so with this weight gain 


I was in a boho state of mind and just knew I wanted to wear this kimono

You can’t see well, but the grey tank top actually has white polk a dots for a subdued pattern mixing. 

If going boho, my gold hoop earrings come into play , as do a couple of gold bangle bracelets.  


Not a good hair day with our humidity back in full force, so a soft  headband does the trick. 

In fact it enhances the boho look when in combination with the hoop earrings.  

My daughter noticed that my hair was very red and asked me about it..

I did nothing different, but I do need a haircut very soon….


Wearing my Clark Wedges , sure helped the case of not liking myself in shorts…

I love the teal handbag from Nine West I bought a few years ago at the outlet store. 

Dear Readers, with my son already back for his sophomore year and my daughter leaving tomorrow, this is a tough time of year for this emotional Mom.  I am getting use to this and have to say this year was better than last year.  I still can’t believe my youngest and I survived the other 3 kids moving our or heading to college all within weeks of each other. The quiet house was awful!  What  a difference a year makes, as my youngest is looking forward to having me back all to himself.  It is nice that he gets this experience of an only child these last years of homeschooling high school.  

Speaking of homeschooling, he chose American Sign Language as his foreign language and we just got the dictionary yesterday and are so excited about doing this journey together… We are even planning to do some binge watching of “Switched at Birth” , gotta love the beauty of homeschooling!  

This year he also gets to do Drivers Ed and our DMV site actually has a section for homeschoolers, this movement is growing in leaps and bounds as more parents make the decision to take on this role.  I never thought of it as a movement when I chose it, just knew that school wasn’t working for my son. 


I am grateful that my son’s ankle swelling is going down and that he is now walking on it.  

I am grateful for these experiences my children are gaining as they go away for college.  

I am grateful for this time for them to learn money management skills and how well they embrace it. 

I am grateful that there is so much excitement for my son in getting back to homeschooling. 

I am grateful that this year is easier for us all to deal with this parting. 

I am grateful that my knee is better and that when exercising yesterday, it did ok. 



Friday, I continued my week of Dresses and skirts 

with a fun print skirt and graphic t-shirt.


I’ve had this skirt for awhile now and love it. 

I recently read a post from You Look Fab stylist, Angie, that 5 years is about the 

turnover for items in her closet with some key pieces exempt from that. 

Skirts are definitely around for longer in my wardrobe….

My Gap , “Lovely Day” shirt can be found here. 

Clark Wedges via can be found here 

If you wear a size smaller than 8,  QVC has this option 

DSC_1032 (1)

This was Sunday’s casual look of the day for grocery shopping. 

I realized today, that I’ve not been wearing as many tank tops as I have in the past summers. 

I think I’ve added a few tops like this one from this season that I am gravitating towards more. 


I even went for a more casual look with my hair and sprayed it with beach wave spray. 

I chose to pair the look with my Just Fab pink backpack style bag .

I love pulling purse colors out of the scarves. 

I am excited for Fall when I see this scarf as it is begging to be paired with my new mint moto jacket! 


I usually don’t wear scarves in Summer, as our heat and humidity make it unbearable. 

We are having a much milder Summer, which is really messing with everyone’s sinuses…

Even my husband who never has issues is complaining and taking meds.



I am grateful for some quiet down time this weekend.  

I am grateful for the fun texts and phone calls from my son who went back to college, as he delights in his first apartment and cooking in his own kitchen.  

I am grateful that I was able to help set up his kitchen and find the space for him to have a spice drawer similar to the one at home that he’s come to love and appreciate.  

I am grateful for the simple things of Summer, like hamburgers on the grill and DH for cooking Sunday dinner…

One of the Trends for Fall is Black and White Pattern Mixed Prints 

graphic one


Since I am not about to run out and find a new piece that is a mixed print,

I got to thinking why not pair together black and white prints already in our closets 

for pattern mixing?  

31 Days of Winter Fashion-Day 19 - Walking in Grace and Beauty


Of course I turned to Pinterest and found a few examples to share 

This one show cases, stripes, plaid and herringbone prints.  

Graphics on graphics? Done. Mix two bold black-and-white prints for double the impact.


A graphic print sweater with a floral skirt

Love Her Outfit! Star Looks to Steal | GWEN STEFANI | We know, we know: So many of the pop star's looks are "For Gwen Only." But we think you can translate this look into your own life using some key elements of her patterned pants/embellished top formula: Stick to the same color palette (in this case, black and white). Pay attention to proportions (she teams voluminous pants with a fitted top). And when all else fails, add a killer red lip and a little swagger.


Polka dots with windowpane print

Polk a Dots and Stripes 

Friday Favorites | lauren conrad | #niciasonoki #fashionista


Any prints work well and this pop of color with the shoes can be done with any option.

I own quite a few black and white print options Including: 

Polka Dots







and Graphic Prints

 I look forward to combining them  to create interesting looks this Fall/Winter Season.   

Dear Readers, Do you like the idea of black and white print pattern mixing?  

Feeling Inspired?  

I keep picturing options with things in my closet and am happy that this is exactly what I want to create by 

Not Shopping for a year ,  except for Accessories after September 8th, my 50th birthday! 

I’ve been wanting a few Gingham tops, so when 

I was at Goodwill and saw this one and another in black 

by Old Navy I was smitten.

(my internet was acting up, so I didn’t get to post this yesterday

before I headed to Richmond to drop my college son off for his sophomore year.  )


Not only was it a color I love, but I also wanted it to be larger sized than 

I would normally wear , so I could easily tie it at the waist or

use it in Fall/Winter under a sweater. 


I paired it with an orange necklace , I’ve had for awhile and you can’t see very well, but

I am also wearing stud earrings from Walmart that are mock Kate Spade in Coral. 


This felt like a wonderful summer combination, but when I get anything new,

my brain is filled with the question,

“How can I wear this across other seasons?”

Quite often I use Pinterest as my Visual Tool to help answer that question.

Black Stripes White With a Bright Checkered Shirt. This actually looks great together!


Cobalt Skirt with Orange Gingham Shirt


nice for fall...even with the white. you can wear white people...just FYI


Interested in an orange gingham top of your own?

Here is an option found of Amazon.

Here is a Plus Size Orange Gingham Top from Amazon


I am grateful that I slept in later today.  Yes, sleep is not to be taken for granted…

I am grateful for wonderful compassionate friendships. 

I am grateful for a dear friend who loaned a scooter for my son to take while he has to wear a walking boot ,

to tool around campus, should he feel the need for it. 

I am grateful that my niece will have the fun of seeing her cousins apartment as she accompanies us to Richmond. 

I am grateful for my daughter who took it upon herself to order pizza for dinner tonight. 

I am grateful that I got started finalizing homeschooling curriculums and went over the weekly schedule with my son. 

I am grateful that even our DMV has online options for Driver’s Ed for homeschoolers!  

When I put together this peplum and lace top I purchased from

and my wonderful striped Target skirt, 

It looked too prim and proper…


Adding my Kate & Mallory Moto vest took it  a less lady-like

silhouette and created that wonderful juxtaposition of opposites

that are so much a part of my style.  


This striped skirt has been one I’ve worn a lot over all seasons

because it’s the perfect casual type that works well for my life

as a homeschooling. SAHM

The fact that I scored it at Goodwill , New with Tags feels wonderful 


Here is one way I wore it last Summer.


And here is a winter version.  


And this was a Fall Version 


I loved adding the mint accents with my new accessories for the season.

I found the shoes on Amazon in April and unfortunately they are no longer available

I am holding my leather, Isaac Mizrahi wallet which is what I carried 

for my short walk to the grocery store.


I am grateful that my husband came home early enough (10:30pm) that I felt up to going for one of our late night walks.

I am grateful that this morning my knee is pain free after the first long walk!  

I am grateful for a phone call yesterday from my oldest friend.

I am grateful for all the hard work my husband puts forth as the sole provider of this family and how successful he is in doing so.  

I am grateful that as a 1099 employee that my husband can schedule days off when needed with no trouble, like tomorrow when we take our son to college!  

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