Prairie Wife of the Week May 2, 2014

Posted May 2, 2014 by Texas Two Steppin' - 3 comments

BothshoeseditpwSo much of this blog is based on what Prairie Wife and I feel like writing about. Or things that are currently in the news (mostly fashion and beauty news but that counts). We thought it would be fun to let you, our readers, get a chance to ask us anything and everything. It’s a wonderful way for me to see what you want to hear about, and for you to get to know us a bit better.

For example, I realized that I had never posted a photo of The Texan’s shoes with mine and should probably remedy that. Yup, you might have mistakenly gotten the impression that my best friend and constant companion would wear boots, but I can’t remember the last time he wore a pair. As I’ve mentioned, we spend weekends on the coast–several hours away from our home base in the Texas Hill Country–and this is our typical footwear. Even though they are flat, I love these sandals; they are like a statement necklace for my feet. Step Girl and Step Boy actually bought these slip-ons for The Texan for Father’s Day in a concerted effort to give him a bit more style (now you see why I love my kiddos so much–LOL!). OK, enough about The Texan and on to your questions…

NordstromShowTricia: What are your favorite brands?

This is actually the reader engagement portion of the blog post. I recently attended a Nordstrom beauty/fashion show (yes, there are some perks to this blogging gig!) and met the store manager. She asked me this question as she is always looking for a new label to carry, and I went blank! So I told her I would throw the question back out to our PWIH readers and report back. Don’t disappoint me, y’all, be sure to leave us a comment!

By the way, Tricia and the team just introduced me to a great brand for the modern, professional women–Trouve. I love everything in the line because it has a simple, graphic feel that is incredible easy to work into your current wardrobe. And for the price point–a reverse lapel jacket or knit sheath dress for $90–the quality was exceptional!

Baby feetNichole: Day care or stay at home mom?! Help me weigh the pros and cons!

This was the toughest question of the bunch–thanks Nichole! I could answer this as a working mom or grandparent or employer or friend and come up with incredibly different answers that would all be correct.

For example, some days you just want to be home with the kids, like when they don’t feel well. Other days, you would give anything to be at the office, like when the kids don’t feel well and are puking and pooping non-stop. I will tell you that I totally supported Grandbaby’s Mom’s decision to stay home for baby girl’s first four months and then go back to teaching. But I also supported Prairie Wife’s decision to go back to work after Cowboy J and stop teaching after Cowgirl G. As an employer, I am so happy when a coworker announces they are pregnant, but six months later I am worried about the extra workload while they are on maternity leave, and three months later I am surprised if they don’t turn in their two-week notice.

I was lucky and got my kids when they were in school, so I didn’t really have to choose. Because we have no family nearby and daycare was non-existent in our small town, The Texan and I had pretty much decided that if we had kids I probably would stay home. But I was also just as certain that I would have gone a bit bonkers, so I was going to do freelance work from home. This decision was made before the Internet and blogs and telecommuting were even words, but I truly felt I could arrange my schedule and lifestyle so my family and I had the “pros” of both worlds. So my Prairie Wife Words of Wisdom are sit back and get creative and honest with yourself because there really could be more than just two options for you and your family.

TX breast cancer shoesJil: How did you stay so positive and brave during your fight with breast cancer? Also any tips on what to watch for, for early detection? 

During treatment I refused to be viewed or known as “the lady with cancer.” Kinda funny now, huh? Having a job that puts me in the public eye every single day really meant that I had to feel and look good, so I did! I was the only patient who rocked heels and blazers in the infusion room, but it helped me feel like it was Casual Friday and chemo was just a new assignment on a new job. The Texan was my faithful driver, and I loved hanging out with him even if I was attached to an IV pole. I also had just gotten an iPad, so quite a few hours spent sitting in the chemo chair were used for online shopping, I must admit! I didn’t buy much because my size kept changing due to the steroids and drugs and hormonal effects, but I sure enjoyed browsing sites and making a wish list (this was before Pinterest).

But if I had to pick one thing, it was that The Texan’s mother died of cancer when she was in her early 40s. I saw how it still impacted the family decades and decades later, so I was out to prove to them that my diagnosis was not an automatic death sentence. I know they were sure that the meds were talking when I told them I was just fine and this was no big deal, but in addition to my immediate family I had so many people counting on me (neighbors, friends, employees, etc.) that I couldn’t fail! 

I am not really qualified to answer the second question, especially because every single case is unique. However, I have already set up an interview with an oncology expert for October, so be sure to check back! But let me give you this seemingly odd suggestion that literally saved my life–put your husband/boyfriend in charge of doing your monthly breast examination. First, how many of us women really take the time to do this regularly? Not many. How many guys would miss an opportunity to grope the ta-tas? Not many. If women do remember to do the exam, we kind of rush and do it half-heartedly. Men take it seriously. Plus, their hands are stronger so they press the tissue deeper and can often feel a tumor we might miss.     

Step Girl: You write for a blog? What’s a blog? 

You’d never guess this girl was raised by a computer programmer and professional communicator! I have always been busy with work and volunteering in the community, so she wasn’t surprised that I’d taken on a new project. But blogs aren’t typically something her crowd dives into because, unlike Pinterest and Facebook and Instagram and Snapchat, you actually have to do a bit of reading. I let her know that a blog was like a web site with stories/pictures and sent her the link. I guarantee you she still hasn’t looked at the archives (she would have complained about a few revealing posts), but I hope to involve her in the blog someday soon as she really is a woman of “grit and grace” who also has a wicked sense of humor.

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3 thoughts on "Prairie Wife of the Week May 2, 2014"

  1. Prairie Wife says:

    This was so great to read, you would think after doing this blog with you I would know it all! My fav was your day care answer, nothing is black and white…and I like how you pointed out you can make the choice to work and then always change your mind (or the opposite). As for brands I love- DKNY and Michael Kors are high on my list because they offer a stylish option for woman in there 30’s and above without looking too young or old! And thanks to TJMaxx and Marshalls for making them affordable 😉

  2. Pa says:

    I am so proud of both of you – both classy ladies!

  3. Great comments, PW, and I’m passing along your loves to the Nordstrom team!

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