"Don't tell God how big your storm is; tell your storm how big your God is."

I believe in God.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

"Works of the Heart"

The other day, I discovered the most wonderful clothing site called "Works of the Heart."  I do not remember the exact URL; go ahead and google it, please! Like "My Culottes," "Works of the Heart" is very Christian in origin, nature, and mission, but it serves my purposes well and is so much fun!

You see, I recently discovered/decided my "personal style": old-fashioned, flouncy, ruffled, etc.  Think pioneer or Victorian era.  The clothes on "Works of the Heart" fit this description perfectly.  They sell every kind of women's and little girls' clothes, in many fabrics.

The fun comes in with the way the site is designed.  Each clothing item is shown with a line drawing, and then you get to pick your fabric.  Most of the items have names to go with them.  For example, this winter I will be getting "Lydia's Dress" (not sure what fabric yet; something polyester but I don't know exactly what), "Rhoda's Dress" (polyester again, again not sure exactly what), a side-button jumper in pink corduroy, and a blouse, not sure exactly which one yet, in white flannel to go under the jumper, or to be paired with a denim skirt on "warmer" days.

Friday, July 25, 2014

My Doll Collection: Portraits and Biographies

Over the years, I have amassed quite a collection of mostly porcelain (one vinyl, one clay) dolls.  I thought it would be nice to take individual shots of them and introduce them to you.

This is Cloud.  Formerly known as Flitter, she comes from Paradise Galleries and was a Bat Mitzvah gift from a friend and colleague of my mother's:

Here is a picture of the rest of the doll display:

This is Emily.  I got her at a souvenir shop in Canada, near the border, following a houseboat vacation with my family:

This is Anne of Green Gables, bought in a similar souvenir shop following a similar vacation.  I wanted her for years before I got her:

This is Helen, also a Bat Mitzvah gift:

This is Maude's teddy bear, whom she calls Vanilla:

And this is Maude.  Maude is my favorite doll in my whole collection.  She also comes from Paradise Galleries, but I forget her original name.  I bought her for myself.

This is Suzy, a gift from my father following a military trip to Italy:

This is Jessica, purchased in a museum gift shop on a trip with my father:

This is Victoria, a Hannukkah gift from my maternal grandmother:

This is Sweet Woman (formerly known as Very Sweet Woman), a Hannukkah gift from my parents:

This is Hitty Plum, sculpted and painted by me, and modeled after Hitty in the book Hitty: Her First Hundred Years:

This is Anne, a sixth birthday present from my parents (although I picked her out) in 1999:

This is my Build-A-Bear, Mathilde, but everyone calls her Tillie:

Last but most definitely not least is Devorah, also brought back from an Army trip to Italy by my father:

Thursday, July 24, 2014

My Nice, Clean Room (Bragging a Little)

Over the last few days, I have put a total of about six or seven hours into cleaning up and organizing my room, because I decided that a lady in skirts cannot live in a junk heap.  I am so proud of the end result that I had to post pictures.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Back to Once-A-Week Laundry!

Because I only have two casual skirts, I have recently been doing laundry every day, washing the dirty one while wearing the clean one.  However, that is about to change.

With permission from my wonderful mother, I have purchased two more new skirts.  At the cost of roughly eighteen dollars each.  I am super excited.  One has three panels in front of black, navy blue, and red; the other is royal blue and flares out, with a sheer, royal blue band near the hem.  Both are beautiful and graceful, yet will be fine paired with a tee shirt and Nikes! As soon as those, and the myculottes.com skirts, come in the mail, I will have seven skirts, and can go back to once-a-week laundry.

Because I like to give credit where credit is due, I should note that I got the above-described skirts at www.romwe.com.

And here is a picture of "Jacob," just in case his special someone sees him today:


Monday, July 21, 2014

More About Skirts

The best piece of advice I ever picked up about skirt-wearing came from Erika Shupe at www.largefamiliesonpurpose.com.  She writes that skirts must already fit your "personal style," the wardrobe you already have and love.

I'm not quite sure what my winter wardrobe will look like yet, but I know that in the summer I love my tee shirts.  They are cool and breezy, loose and comfy, and a lot of them have sentimental meaning to me.  So I need a nice, casual skirt to go with nice, casual tops.

Even more than my tee shirts, however, what I refuse to give up are my Nike sneakers.  I absolutely adore Nikes: they are practical, casual, and supportive, which I need for my flat feet.  Nike is my preferred brand of sneaker, at least for now.

What sort of skirt fits with tee shirts and Nikes, yet still leaves me feeling feminine and pretty, you ask? Well, naturally, I have an answer! www.myculottes.com sells practical skirts in many colors and fabrics.  They can be customized as far as measurements, and I know from experience that they can be dressed up or down by your style of shirt and shoe.  I heartily recommend www.myculottes.com!

I feel pretty!

Wearing skirts has done the unexpected for me, something I honestly thought impossible at this point: I FEEL PRETTY! I think that is actually my primary reason for wearing them; it is not so much that I want to present a femme image in the LGBT world, or about how I get treated by certain sectors of the Jewish world.  Plain and simple, this really is about feeling pretty.

What fascinates me is how quickly I have learned to "move like a woman".  The first day in a skirt, I had to deliberately curl up my legs to the side rather than crossing them in front when sitting.  Now that position is my "go to" sitting position.  Sleeping in a nightgown, I curl up under the blanket to cover my legs, even though no one can see me.  It just feels right.

Now, because I haven't posted a picture of myself on this blog since my brother's Bar Mitzvah nearly five years ago, here is a picture of me in a skirt.  This one is old--you'll notice the patch--and a little too short for my liking.  I prefer a skirt in which I can sit cross-legged on the floor if I want.  However, this skirt has tremendous sentimental value, and besides I cannot afford to throw away wardrobe pieces, so it stays.

And now for the photo:

And now for a picture of "Jacob," because it's been too long since I posted about him:

Jacob sm

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Wardrobe Makeover

I'm so excited: I am going to start dressing in a much more feminine manner.  This is not a religious or idealistic move at all; rather, I simply believe that I have been sending the world the wrong message about my personality via the way I dress, and I aim to correct that.  To that end, I am purchasing two new summer type skirts and one that will carry me into the fall; if I'm still sticking with this by the time the weather turns colder I will look into "cold weather" skirts.  I am also wearing jewelry every day, and planning--for now--to keep my hair long.

I am aware that dressing this way takes more work than the short hair or ponytail and "guy shorts" I have been wearing up until this point.  But I am not butch; I am not butch.  I do not want the world to get the wrong impression.  A little work to ensure the correct impression, in my opinion, is worth it.

Friday, July 18, 2014


I have so many things for which to be thankful, that I thought I would just go ahead and list them all.  It's a good exercise for me as well, because my chronic pain is spreading into my hands, and I could use to think about something else.  Tacky solution, I know, but here goes anyway:

  1. Family: I have the most wonderful mother and father, who provide for me financially and with love.  They take me on trips, help me move in and out of dorms, and listen to my problems and concerns, as well as my hobbies.  I also have two most excellent brothers who do a good job listening and caring as well.
  2. Religion: I am a Jew, and very proud of it.  When times are darkest, I can turn to my strong relationship with God that I have built up over the years, and that will get me through anything.  I write letters to God, as well as praying in a more conventional Jewish manner, and I do feel that God listens.
  3. Writing: Writing poetry provides solace for me like almost nothing else.  It is a true gift to be able to put one's words down on paper, and I know not everyone can do it.
  4. Sewing: Sewing is my other major hobby.  Primarily I make doll clothes, although I recently completed a quilt for a special teddy bear and eventually I plan to make a quilt for myself.  I have also made my own tallit/tallis (Jewish prayer shawl).
  5. Work Ethic: I have the native, inbred ability to work harder than almost anyone else I know, and that is vital and necessary if one wants to get through college in four years, which I do, while managing two chronic conditions, which I have (Reflex Neurovascular Dystrophy and bipolar disorder).  The only way to get through school on time if there are periods when one simply cannot work is to buckle down and work away when one can, including over summer vacation (as I have for the last two years) if necessary.  I'm not complaining at all here; in fact, the emphasis was supposed to be on how blessed I am to be able to work this hard!
  6. Friends: Let's face it, being friends with me is tough.  I like to say that I'm not necessarily needy in the classic sense of the term, but I do have genuine needs.  Being chronically ill is hard work; I need people to whom I can turn every time.  And...I have some.  Not every friendship has worked out; some people have gotten overwhelmed and dropped contact.  But I do have about five friends to whom I know I can come with anything, at any time (within reason), even if I came to them yesterday with the exact same thing.
There...I think that's enough for now.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014


Earlier this morning I was reading the Hebrew Bible (my current Jewish reading), and I was specifically reading about Noah and the flood.  As I read, I realized that the ark that God asks Noah to build is not a boat which Noah can steer, but a box in which Noah must shut himself up and simply trust to God that everything will be OK.  And you know what? Noah does it.  He builds his box, loads it up with animals, climbs aboard, closes it, and rides the waves for forty days and forty nights.

I wish we could all have that kind of faith.  Sometimes life gets really hard, and it's difficult to believe that God is looking out for us after all.  But God is.  God really is.

Let's all learn from Noah.


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About Me

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I am a bipolar, Jewish young adult (had my Hebrew birthday, the one I count, and turned 23 this past January) who also suffers from Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy. I love life and I live for my best friends: they are my purpose and my reason for trying so hard. I remain passionately devoted to those I love; I will not let my disorders make me totally self-centered. I like to read, write, and sew. My Rabbinical school plans did not work out, and I am now hoping to go into the field of Early Childhood Education. Please note: I am currently maintaining only Carried in His Hands. Enjoy!