Even though the calendar said autumn began in September, yesterday was the first day that it was chilly and the air was crisp. That’s how fall rolls in SoCal style.
The other way you know that it’s autumn, the proliferation of women wearing Ugg boots (usually while also wearing shorts but not always). Being from the midwest by way of Palm Springs, this is a bit funny to me. I don’t see more women wearing coats during this time of year just these outdoor sheepskin slippers. [Full disclosure: I own a pair, but they are leather with a heavy lug sole and I bought them five years ago for a Christmas trip to Chicago. I rarely wear them unless it’s raining.]
The other thing that happens here is that the scarves come out. Shorts, Uggs and scarves. It isn’t really cold here until we put pants on, I guess. Luckily, I never followed these surfer girl trends. (They’re cute on surfer girls, and I’m far from being one.) Instead, I look forward to wearing my jeans every day, allowing most of my closet to see the light of day (I own lots of lightweight sweaters and boots) and to contemplate which shoes to wear instead of slipping on flip-flops or sandals. This is my favorite season: sports-wise, weather-wise and fashion-wise. Now, it’s time to go bask in it’s glow (or shiver in it’s wind).
Currently, I’m lusting after a pair of Tory Burch “Anya” Huarache Sandals. They’re ridiculously expensive and for some reason I want them. Nevermind that I bought a pair for $20 (albeit not in gold) when I was in high school. Nevermind that I’m stalking my postman for checks. Nevermind that fall is around the corner. I dream of these shoes and all the outfits that they’ll breathe new life into.
The last time I had such a shoe crush was last spring (or, maybe two summers ago). I first saw the silver Stuart Weitzman Gladio sandal and fell in love. I had other expenses so I settled for admiring them from afar. “Eventually, I’ll get them,” I thought. Then I got pregnant and gained 60 pounds (mostly in my feet). There was no way that I was going to buy the shoes then. I still pine for those shoes.
I know these wants are just that—wants. Having either pair won’t fulfill my life, but I enjoy how they spark my imagination and for a brief moment, expand my closet in my head.
There are few things that make me truly excited—brand new running shoes do. After two years, I’m retiring my Asics 2120s for 2140s (pictured at left). My old shoes served me well and it was time. They carried me across the finish line in two Nike Women’s Half-Marathon (2007: the week before my wedding and 2008: three months after Baby A was born), helped me train for the later race and somehow managed to fit my extremely swollen pregnant feet for nine months. Yes, it was definitely time.
So for my birthday (see July is the month of b-days), M bought me a new pair. And that night I christened my shoes with a four-mile round trip walk to UCLA’s Drake Stadium where I ran the blechers.
My parents moved to sunny southern California after helping my Aunt Jo transplant her family from Chicago to Palm Springs. It wasn’t right away, so I missed the infamous incident where my father apparently took the lights off of a Jack in the Box drive-thru with the moving truck. But after at least four years, they packed me up and left the brutal winters behind. My grandmother followed us. I was her baby’s (my mom is the youngest of six) baby and apparently she wanted to be around to watch me grow up. And here is where the randomness of this post starts.
Today my mom arrived to take care of Baby A so I could get some much needed work done. She drove through the craziness that was the Michael Jackson Memorial in downtown LA to be here. Even to me it seems like crazy lengths of loyalty to play with an 11-month-old. But I guess that is what Ya-Yas (Greek for grandmother) do.
So this post is to celebrate the Ya-Ya’s in my life. Today is the birthday of my grandma and my Aunt Jo (the first woman I knew to be called Ya-Ya). As for my mom, I appreciate that these women raised her. Recently I wrote about my grandma in The Wheel Watcher. She passed when I was seven so my memories of her are few.
My Aunt Jo stepped in for her. My fondest memory of childhood was playing dress up in her shoe closet. She had been a shoe model at Imagin and had fabulous shoes as a result. My favorite were a pair of silver glittered heels that had her name in them—first in the left; last in the right—that were designed especially for her. I loved those shoes and when I grew out of them (at the young age of 10) I was so sad. Her closet definitely was the impetus of my shoe fascination now.
So on this July 7, I wish my Auntie Jo a wonderful birthday, remember my grandma and appreciate Baby A’s ya-ya (my mom).