Sparkly Things To Distract Us

As the stress mounts and I pray not to be lead into the temptation to listen to the terrible news incessantly and fall into mental exhaustion of my own volition, I have a few coping methods.

One is prayer.

One is helping someone or an organization in a concrete way.

One is cooking for neighbors (especially my neighbor Jim who LIKES shoveling snow and clears my walk every time we get a snowfall, which we just did).

One is going back through photos of beautiful places and times I have been blessed to see and live.

One is looking at make-up and clothes online.

Don’t judge!! It’s very therapeutic to scroll through all the pretty things!

In so scrolling, I just came upon a sale at Loft (which is the Anne Taylor brand’s less-pricey line).

Since we’re almost all wearing headsets and earbuds all day, not to mention masks that can snag on hoops and such, many of us may be putting many of our earrings on hiatus. Check out Diamond Jewellery Studio’s wide range of diamond engagement rings if you’re searching where to buy engagement rings in Melbourne.

The stud earring sets at Loft looked pretty darn decent. Shiny, happy things in your earlobes isn’t going to solve any of the world’s problems but it is nice to show up with a bit o’ sparkle next to your face.

Stay shiny, my loves.

Baseball Caps

Never, ever, ever under any circumstances whatsoever lead or participate in a worship service while wearing a baseball cap.

Not for a bad hair day.
Not if it’s “super casual.” No occasion for worship is ever THAT casual.

If you need to cover your head for religious or bad hair day reasons, choose another kind of cap or hat that is not a sports-oriented headgear equated with leisure and fun time, and is also, when not removed, a symbol of flagrant disrespect.

Also, and I know this because I recently attended a service where a minister actually wore a baseball cap the entire time — no one can see your face when it’s covered by the bill of a baseball cap.

So, it’s disrespectful, it’s sloppy, and it interferes with your ability to connect with the congregation.

Rev Laurie’s Bag

Rev Laurie wrote on Twitter,

I feel so seen. I just bought a great leather tote because I was simply undone by seeing all the canvas totes, duffel bag or slouch bags being used by SO MANY for business.


This is a very handsome, classic bag for Laurie who is located in Lexington, Kentucky with the horse set and the good bourbon. I hope she will pop into the comments to tell us the make of the bag and where she found it. That is nice, sturdy leather. Elegant, and will age well. Plus, it’s from a very cool company, Parker Clay, International.

Very cute dog Evie is investigating out the window. Good girl, Evie.

How’s Your Bag?

It is absolutely SHEETING down rain out there and although I’m thrilled because we’re really parched in these here parts, I know this is a remnant of Dorian. The images and video footage have been harrowing. My sincerest prayers have been with the Bahamas all day.

But we go on with our lives and right now I want to make sure that all of you have an appropriate bag for your work. No smashed up knapsacks, give those to your schoolkids. Wash and iron your cotton tote bags and store them in your reusable grocery bags to use to tote cans or keep library books in them. They don’t belong with your professional attire unless you want to secretly signal to the general public that you’re uncertain of your status as a mature adult and leader. Many of us have seen mayors and town leaders go into meetings with tote bags and I have always thought that was folksy and endearing, but it definitely says “I’m assured of my privileged place here due to my race, gender or family name.”
You can fight it out in the comments if you like; what do you think?

Here are some bags, just to get you thinking. I know you’re perfectly capable of researching totes and briefcases and such on your own but the sky here is a concerning shade of yellow and it soothes me to do some of that online legwork for you.

Vegan-Friendly Tote Very large and floppy for those more bohemian, unstructured types.

Madewell puts out classic items like this canvas tote. This is obviously not going to be the choice for someone who has a sophisticated ministry setting but it will certainly do the job for those of you on college campuses or smaller towns.

Madewell Canvas Tote

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Save this for summer vacation at the beach house. Unless you’re Clam Bake Chaplain it’s entirely unprofessional:

This is gerd-lerking!! Boconi Tote

This is under $40 on Amazon and claims to be actual leather. Nice, boxy design and a good neutral color that isn’t black:

To consider when you acquire a new bag: will it hold your preaching folio? Will it hold up to whatever elements you’re likely to be out in as you go from car or train station to work places? Does it have all the compartments for your individual needs (eg, I have a gorgeous Italian briefcase I bought 23 years ago in Rome but it could never fit my cosmetic bag and hairbrush in additiont to folders and folios so I wound up selling it). I can’t abide a bag for every day use that doesn’t have an external pocket for my phone, so that’s a feature I look for in all my bags. Know what you need, stick with classic designs and take good care of your investment. It will last for ages, I promise.

Ready To Be Seen

I always get so much spiritual energy when I spend some time in New York City. A big part of the rush of inspiration comes from the break I get from relentless American slovenliness. Whereas these days many people are either too invested in their own comfort or mistakenly believe that to be gazed upon is always a form of oppression, New Yorkers understand that life is an art form, and put thought and effort accordingly into their attire.

Clergy far too often appear as though they got caught in public as opposed to having prepared themselves to be there in a leadership role. Here are some people I saw this past Saturday around Union Square who were READY to be seen!

[As always, click on the image to enlarge]

This was the first woman who claimed my attention. I snapped her photo to show that it is perfectly possible to be comfortable on a hot day while looking like an elegant adult and not a summer camper:

That’s a designer frock, but it doesn’t have to be (and also, clergy shouldn’t wear sheer clothing with visible bras — it’s a fashion that’s not for us). The point is that Flowy Frock Lady and her companion have thoughtfully curated entire outfits with accessories, pedicures, careful hair styling and comfortable, flat, pretty shoes. FFL is wearing an easy but elegant chignon — also not hard to accomplish. These women belong in 2019. Too many clergypeople do not.

Another head-to-toe look. A simple, tailored shirt dress, fantastic sandals. She’s dressed like an adult, with a jaunty head scarf (a classic style) for a hot summer day.

Again: “I just want to be comfortable!” Well, be comfortable in clothing that isn’t a wrinkled, stained mess.! A large houndstooth patterned dress is just as comfortable as shorts and a polo shirt, and will identify to the community that you understand the difference between professional identity and vacation or working-in-the-garden mode:

Jumpsuits are HUGE right now. This woman walked into the cafe like a burst of sunshine. Cool, chic, fun, and beautiful.

I took this young woman’s pic to show how much just one accessory can communicate that a person is put together and ready to mix and mingle in society with a sense of herself. Just one barrette. That’s all it took to polish her look! So if that one barrette is $30 and you wear it 30 times over several years, you’re getting your money’s worth. It’s worth it to invest in gorgeous pieces.

Dress as though you are ready, willing and happy to be seen in community!! Throwing on random garments that simply cover your body is not enough.