My Date With Drew Barrymore

IMG_1825Okay, I am exaggerating about having an actual date with Drew Barrymore.  I wish I had.  I did, however, enjoy a lively Q&A with her, along with a few hundred other Drew fans, last Saturday evening at The Center for Spiritual Living in Seattle.  Drew is on a 10-city tour to promote her new book Wildflower, which is filled with personal stories (aka essays).  She is quick to note this book is not a memoir.  Drew said she felt “memoir” is too heavy a word for what she wanted to do with this book.  It is worth noting, Drew had no plans to write a book; however, she said these stories were begging her to be told.  Thus, she wrote these select stories over a span of several months, shutting herself in a room to concentrate.

I have long admired sweet Drew starting with her role as Gertie in E.T. the Extra Terrestrial (1982) at the tender age of 6.  I do not know why I was initially drawn to her as a 10-year old myself.  I just was.  Now that I am an adult, I can say I like her spunk, her honesty and her authenticity.  What you see is what you get with Drew.  She isn’t contrived.  Throughout the interviews of her I have seen over the years, I find her to be kind, thoughtful, empathetic and sensitive.  On the other hand, she is also strong, determined, hard-working and self-effacing.  That is a dream set of personal characteristics if you ask me.

The moderator for the evening, writer/director Lynn Shelton, emerged for the Q&A in a short black dress and patterned tights, trailed by Drew in a long-sleeved black top and a long floral skirt (signature Drew style!).  Drew quickly made light of their polar-opposite outfits by hiking up her skirt to her knee and flicking her long, wavy hair over her shoulder.  Lynn asked Drew a handful of questions to which Drew followed with 10+ minutes of lively answer to each.  By the time it came to the audience questions, Drew agreed to do a speed round to get through all of them, truncating her usual long-winded answers by 75%.

Throughout the evening, Drew was a great sport, highly animated and very funny.  It could not have been a better way to spend a cold, rainy night in Seattle, and it certainly raised my love for Drew to a higher level (if that is possible).  Drew signed books after the Q&A, but the audience was asked not to take any photographs at the book signing.  Thus, I have no selfies with Drew to share with you.  It was a thrill to meet Drew as she signed my book, which basically entailed me smiling at her and her smiling sweetly back at me. I kind of blew my chance to make an impression.  Ha!  Thanks for a fabulous evening, Drew. xo

Fall 2015 – The Confident Woman

MenswearIf you were to look at a list of fall trends year over year, you would notice a lot of repetition: leather, fur, black, gray, red, tweed, belts, boots, smoky eyes, etcetera. To get to the heart of the season, you must look beyond the list. The wide array of designs which walk down the runways of Milan, London, New York and Paris magically come together each year to convey an overall mood. Fall 2015 is all about confidence.

The Fall 2015 woman blazes her own path and she calls her own shots. She wears what she loves, and she masterfully combines masculine with feminine in a way that makes sense and looks very relaxed and easy. She is not trying too hard. Rather, she is perfectly imperfect. The Fall 2015 woman is returning to a more sensible way of dressing, as well. We are seeing large tote bags to hold our stuff, a relaxed fit so we can eat lunch and not pop a seam, and chunky heels so we can stand comfortably for long stretches and not tip over in a strong gust of wind.

For the most part, the fall woman is covered up and she leaves much to the imagination, yet she remains extremely sexy. How is this possible? In short, sexy is all about attitude and presence. A confident woman is a sexy woman.

Several trends which are newer to this fall season (though they are not completely new) include long vests, stocking boots, chokers, flares, high waist and pastels. The Pantone 2015 color of the year is marsala, an earthy brown-red. Thus, it should come as no surprise that red is a standout (yet again) for fall from bright red to deep, dark tones. Red fits perfectly into the fall 2015 mood since it is without a doubt a color that conveys confidence and passion.

Style confidence is easy to achieve if you are willing to forget about the expectations of others. There are many who are more than eager to advise you on what to buy and where to invest most wisely for your fall wardrobe. Instead of listening to them, focus on what you want and focus on the woman you are. Greek philosopher and mathematician Thales is credited with saying, “The most difficult thing in life is to know yourself.” I hope it will not be the hardest thing you have ever done, but it does take much effort.  Check in with yourself often and trust your gut regarding what is right for you and what is not. The more you trust yourself, the more skilled you will become in choosing pieces that speak to your heart and work for your life.

Have a great fall season, and call me if you need a confidence boost. I am here to help!

Two Ways of Considering Fall

Maple tree , Bennington , Vermont

Fall marks the beginning of many things we enjoy, football, cooler temperatures, colorful leaves, the start of our holidays, etcetera. Fall also ushers in shorter days, food temptations, cold and flu season and holiday stress. Are you a positive thinker or a negative thinker? In the midst of the fall season, do you see things that are dead and dying, or do you see the cycle of life whereby things can grow bigger and stronger in the spring?

You see, the fall “death” is necessary for our spring growth. We often find ourselves speeding up in the fall, but truly, fall is meant to be a time for slowing down, finding ways to rest so we have energy for what is ahead. Trees and plants that appear to be dying are simply going into rest mode. Spring growth and the blooming process requires a lot of energy. Rest is essential before growth. If you are like me, you are not resting enough. I find myself in the last quarter of each year speeding up to accomplish the tasks I had mapped out for the year. Guess what happens to me? I generally get sick in the last quarter of the year. This is my cue to stop and rest.

So, as you look down the road to what is coming in the final months of this year, carve out some days or just a few hours here and there for good old fashioned rest. Turn off your phone, and walk away from other electronic distracters like the TV and computer. Lying on your bed reading your news feed is not rest. True rest renews your mind, your strength and your health. A few examples: lying still and quiet in a bath, taking a nap, sitting outside in a quiet spot alone, practicing deep breathing in a dark closet, sleeping 7 – 8 hours per night, and so on. In short, if you do not rest, you cannot grow.

If you are frustrated by a lack of progress in an area of your life, resist the temptation to try harder to do better. Just rest. Take a step back so you can return to the task later with renewed strength and vigor. Happy Fall and Happy Resting!

FLOR to the Rescue

FLORsignFLOR popped upon my radar earlier this year when a friend on Facebook asked where to buy a quality rug at a good price.  Over and over the responses to her post were, “FLOR.”  When I looked into it, I discovered FLOR is a modular carpet tile system, which gives the customer the freedom to create a rug in whatever shape, size, color or style they desire.  I was intrigued, and I filed that little nugget of information away for later use.

Fast forward to summer. We are settled in a lovely craftsman-style home in West Seattle with beautiful hardwood floors throughout.  As you enter the front door of our home, you can see straight to the rear of our home to our family room which is just beyond our open kitchen.  This lengthy stretch of hardwood begged for a runner to not only add spice to our interior but also to protect the floor from foot traffic.

I went to FLOR’s website to investigate my options.  It is mind-blowing, actually.  I was stumped.  I decided to best place to start would be to order samples.  My lack of understanding must have showed having ordered a couple of squares for pet rugs.  Woops!

Thank goodness FLOR has design consultants to assist.  A consultant from the Seattle store e-mailed me shortly after the samples arrived to see if she could help me.  I immediately made an in-store appointment for a consultation.  She and I discussed the space, our aesthetic and our interior colors.  She guided me through my options, and she kept it simple.

By the end of our appointment, I had happily settled on a lovely multi-colored patchwork runner that covers the most highly trafficked stretch of our entry floor.  I love that I was able to incorporate many colors we have in our home.  The various textures and patterns I chose keep it from looking basic or boring.FLORWithPics

I installed it myself, and that part was much easier and quicker than I expected it to be.  I highly recommend FLOR.  When I walk in our home, it makes me smile.

If you live in Seattle, contact their store at 206.448.3365.  Ask for Kirsten.  Address: 2000 1st Avenue, Seattle, 98121.

Byrnie Utz Hats

NewHat (5)I cannot remember who told me about Byrnie Utz Hats, a wonderful family-owned hat shop located in the Financial District of downtown Seattle.  When I spotted it on a recent visit to downtown, I ducked in to see it for myself.  Though I do not wear hats often, I simply adore them and I fancy myself to be a regular hat wearer one day.  We’ll see!

Opened in 1934 by Byrnie Utz, this is Seattle’s oldest hat shop with an extensive inventory and a staff with unsurpassed knowledge on head gear.  I found the shop to be quaint, tidy, organized and well-stocked.  It looks much like it did when it was opened, which lends to its charm and appeal.  I believe there is something there for just about anyone looking for a hat, and the prices will not break the bank.  The many brands they stock include Borsalino, Makins and Stetson.NewHat (7)

As I browsed, I picked up a packable hat by Wallaroo made of lovely layers of navy and white polka dot fabric.  With a family trip around the corner, one that may include stops at a water park and the zoo, I simply could not resist it, especially given the added benefit of UPF 50+ and an interior adjustment for a perfect fit.  I love it.  What do you think?

If you’re looking for a hat or simply enjoy the idea of hats, pop into this wonderful store when you get a chance.  It will not disappoint, and I would be surprised if you did not walk away with a treasure for yourself.

Day Nails and Spa – West Seattle

ToesI have been desperate for a pedicure for weeks now, maybe since the start of spring.  The move from Dallas to Seattle not only took a toll on my emotions but also my feet.  They have been screaming for pampering.  Finally, I had to pull the trigger.  I needed a pedicure, and I needed it NOW.  Enter, the wonderful people of West Seattle to help me out.  I posted a question on a Facebook group called West Seattle Giving Tree, asking where to get a good pedicure.  And, boy, did the recommendations come rolling in!  So many choices, so little time.

The response gave me an idea!  I have been so busy settling my family in the northwest, that my business (Bethany Siggins Image Consulting) has taken a back seat.  I may not have many clients presently, but the least I can do is blog about my experiences in my new hometown!

That said, let’s get on with my first review.  Today I visited Day Nails and Spa (9444 35th Ave SW, just north of the intersection of 35th and Roxbury).  It is a tidy little place with four pedicure chairs and two nail stations, along with a spa room for other services like waxing and eye lash extensions.  I was the first customer of the day at 9:15 a.m. (they open at 9:00 a.m. Monday – Saturday).  Tina was the only employee there, sweeping and getting the spa ship shape for the day.

PolishShe directed me to the second chair after I chose my toenail color (OPI’s A Good Mandarin is Hard to Find, a fabulous orange that isn’t too bright).  After establishing the service I wanted (a deluxe pedicure, competitively priced at just $30), Tina made me an iced Vietnamese coffee.  Oh, how delicious!  I noted the 70’s music playing on the speakers (not too loud).  A little Earth Wind and Fire always makes me smile.

Tina was very courteous, asking me my name and telling me hers.  The pedicure started with a powder treatment in the water which she made sure was a temperature to my liking. The deluxe pedicure includes an exfoliating scrub of the feet and calves, along with a deep conditioning mask on the feet and calves, which she covered with warm towels for a short while.  This was followed by the standard massage of the feet and calves, which was not rushed and just the right pressure.

A little more than an hour later, I was on my way with very happy feet and a relaxed body thanks to the massage chair.  All in all, I like this little shop, and I recommend you visit it for a change of pace from the larger, louder establishments.  If possible, go in the morning when it is most quiet.  I did not make a reservation; walk ins are welcome.  On your 10th visit, you receive $10 off.  By the way, a standard mani/pedi combo is also $30, a real bargain if you ask me.

Give it a try and let me know what you think!  Thanks for reading!  And happy spaing!


Siggins in Seattle

FamilyPhotoHi, everyone.  My apologies for not keeping up with my blog, newsletters, etc.  The move from Dallas to Seattle on January 23, 2015 was harder on my body, my mind and my soul than I had anticipated.  But here I am, still standing (better than I ever did – to copy a phrase from Elton John).

As most of you have likely learned by now, John (my husband) took a job in executive recruiting for Amazon Web Services which necessitated a move to Seattle.  It was a very difficult decision for us as we weighed many pros and cons for moving to Seattle versus staying in Dallas.  Ultimately, we had to look at the much bigger picture.  This job would provide John with a great career challenge and opportunity, which benefits our family.  So, here we are!

We had not been told before the move how difficult it is to buy a home in Seattle (low supply, high demand).  Despite the odds, I trekked out almost daily to see homes all over the city and on the east side as they call it here.  Many people were praying for us, and it showed.  God was in control.  In 30 days’ time (miraculous by Seattle standards), we had a contract on a home in West Seattle.  We took the above family photo on the back deck of our home in April.  At least John and I appear happy about it!

We moved into our lovely blue craftsman home Easter weekend.  We love West Seattle, which has a gritty, urban feel mixed with a friendly, small-town vibe.  In addition, we live 1-1/2 miles from Alki Beach, which is where many Seattlites congregate in the warm sunny days of summer.  So, along with being new residents of the Pacific northwest, it looks as though we are also going to be “beach” people!  Who would have thought?

In the coming days, weeks and months, I would like to introduce you to some of the places I’m visiting in Seattle and in West Seattle, and keep you in the loop on the things I am doing here.  I hope you will enjoy the posts.  Thank you for reading!  I miss you, Dallas! xo