What I Wore Sunday: Confessions of a Vain Mommy?

This is what I wore to Mass today.

New red coat (clearance find!) from Anne Klein.  Chutzpah to wear purple tights with nude heels from Martha.

New red coat (clearance find!) from Anne Klein. Chutzpah to wear purple tights with nude heels from Martha.




Scarf close-up

Scarf close-up

The girls wore matching gold sparkly dresses and pink sparkly cardigans.   Have I mentioned how much I love having little girls?

IMG_1405 IMG_1406 IMG_1407 IMG_1408 IMG_1409


What I really want to write about, though, is last week.  Last Sunday, I spent over an hour (okay, almost two), getting myself showered and dressed, working on hair, trying out an eyeshadow technique I saw on Pinterest, etc.   Pat got himself and both girls ready.  We then gathered up the girls and their accoutrements into the van in our typical rush.

Before we left, Pat snapped a pictures of me.

IMG_1326[1]Ugh.  Well. . . . That was a waste of time.  (I truly truly am not fishing for compliments here.  A lot of you left sweet, encouraging comments last week, which made me feel much better and which I appreciate.  Still, subjectively, I was not happy with how I looked.)

We got to our pew and I looked down to see that Girl 1’s tights were on backwards, so the dingy part that is supposed to be on the bottom of her foot was instead on the top.  Her shoes were on backwards and . . .

My own fingernails were dirty.  With eyeshadow, I think.

I don’t believe our God is one to play “gotcha” with us.  But, man, I sure felt I was being taught a lesson.

Somehow, the hours before Mass have become “me” time, and that just doesn’t seem right.

Is God glorified when we put on nice clothes for Mass, when we wash and nicely arrange our hair, when we put on a bit of makeup?  Sure. Is He glorified when I perfect the latest eyeshadow technique from Pinterest and spend long (futile!) hours with a round brush trying to get my hair to look like Kate Middleton’s?


I’ve  never been a high maintenance kind of girl (at least not as far as the externals go, emotional maintenance is another story).  So, I’ve always felt silly, vain, when I spend a lot of time on my appearance.

And yet, after having two kids and turning 30, I’m convinced it’s not a bad thing to have a nice two-hour stretch once a week to take care of myself: to take a long shower, to take whatever depilatory measures are necessary, to “do” my hair nicely, to play around with makeup.  It’s not a bad thing.  It might even be a good thing.  It’s not just vanity.  (But yes, I realize it is a luxury I am extremely blessed to have.)

At the same time, it doesn’t feel right to do it on Sunday morning.

So this is where I was going to write about how I’ve started making Saturday evening my “me” time: taking a nice long shower, putting my hair in Velcro rollers overnight, picking out my outfit, maybe doing my nails, so that I can get ready quickly in the morning.

But then real life intervened.  We stayed out late at a lovely gathering of dear, old friends.  Once we got home and got the girls to bed, my tired mommy bones weren’t up to anything more than going to sleep.  Then this morning, my Saintly Husband let me sleep in, and I had about half an hour to get ready.

Somehow, though, like the way I turned out a bit better this week:


I’m not really sure what the moral of the story is here.  Spend time with good friends whenever you can, and get as much sleep as you can, I suppose.  All the same, next weekend I will try to implement my new Saturday night routine.

My hair looks better when I do the Velcro rollers anyway.  😉

Fireman’s wife with curlers in her hair, ca. 1955. Photograph by Honoré Desmond Sharrer. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

As usual, I’m linking up with Fine Linen and Purple for What I Wore Sunday.  Check there for lots of Sunday finery!

14 thoughts on “What I Wore Sunday: Confessions of a Vain Mommy?

  1. Okay, your nude heels with the purple tights look awesome. They really do! Way better than my attempt the other day. Also, I know what you mean. I think the days I put the MOST into getting ready are the days I end up looking … the worst. I really do think it’s God saying, “Do you KNOW what you could have been doing with that time?” I think of Matthew about the birds and lilies of the field — how they don’t worry about what they will wear…

    Working on that.

  2. Ditto on the too-much-time-results-in-mad-oversights. Less is more, as they say? I like to gussy up, but I agree that Sunday morning is probably not the time to get experimental. I get overwhelmed and then I rush and then… I regret.

    You do look darling in all of your photos, though. Remember, you’re the one who had the “perfect vision” in your head. No one knows just by looking at us what we were trying to achieve- they just see the perfectly lovely (if not altogether Pinterest-ready) end result.

  3. Your color choices are awesome, Laura, and the girls look so charming. What a joy to dress girls.

    And yes, I agree about the need to not let our self-care measures get out of balance, either way.

    Thank you for sharing your pretty ensemble. I particularly like the blue of your sweater.

  4. Def. Love the nude heels with purple tights! And That sounds similar to my Sunday mornings of late. I get stressed and grumpy scrambling out the door, so something’s gotta give!

  5. I enjoyed your reflection. It is a difficult balance to strike, and I think you are right on that having that time to rejuvenate is important, but maybe not right before Mass when it’s good to prepare for the Lord. I, like you, have taken to moving most of my self-care to Saturday night. I paint my nails, and fix my hair if I’m going to straighten it, and at least think about what I might put on in the morning.
    As mamas, and especially while all you have is tiny ones, it’s important to feel like a *woman*. So I would encourage you to keep up the things that make you feel good, but I love the idea of moving it to another time! (Can you practice eyeshadow technique during naptime sometime? I don’t know about you, but I know my husband loves coming home to a fresh-looking lady!)
    Also, the red coat is the bomb. I have one in pink that I love, and I think when it comes to your coat, as far as color anything goes!
    Lastly, honestly, you look beautiful in both weeks’ pictures. 😉

  6. Gold sparkly dresses and pink sparkly cardigans? My girlies would be in Heaven! I love the Easter dresses you posted about the other day. Good thing my eldest daughter wasn’t around at the moment to see them; my mother-in-law graciously volunteered to sew two dresses for me and I didn’t want Princess to change her mind now that Grandma is working on her dress! 😉

    You look gorgeous as always.

    And I love the list of tags at the end of your blog. “Religion and Spirituality, Shoes, Sunday, Tights.” Gosh, that sounds like my morning as we get everyone ready for Church. “It’s Sunday (tag), so do you kids have your church books (r&s tag)? Hey–don’t head them out the door yet, I just found Miss M’s tights (tag), and where on EARTH are Princess and Sunshine’s other shoes(tag)? For goodness sake, girls, that’s why we have a shoe shelf in your room!”

    If anyone asks why I knit on my way to Mass, it’s to calm myself in preparation for Mass after running the gauntlet of getting the kids ready. ;)-

  7. I like the red coat with purple tights! I have a red coat too and I honestly think the only thing I wouldn’t pair it with would be red–everything else is fair game! And those gold dresses/pink sweaters are just the best ever. Oh, how I live vicariously through you!

  8. Love those little eureka moments in life when God points out how to best adjust our time-management and decision-making skills. Count your blessings that you heard Him over all the noise in this world. Sometimes a vision doesn’t turn out as expected, but it still turns into something great. Step back and look at it again, I say. And your scarf is cute.

  9. I hear you on the “me time” Sunday morning. What I have learned to do over the years is take care of all the “Primpy things” on Saturday night (nails, brows, legs, etc.) and then I get up early Sunday morning to do my hair, makeup, etc allowing me to be fully prepared when Miss courtney wakes up and needs to be dressed. yes, there are Saturday nights where things interfere and you know what that’s OK. Time with friends and family is more important anyway. Those are the memories you will keep. not what you wore.

    Go easy on yourself. your routine will come to you in time.

    BTW – great use of colored tights and the nude shoe. Just lovely! Purple and red are complimentary colors you know so nicely done there as well.

  10. Laura, I’m obviously behind on my blog reading 🙂 I just saw this post. first, you look great in both pics, but I do like the fast prep one better, too. ah, life, sigh. I have been trying sooooo hard myself to put in that extra effort before Mass (by this I mean spending less time sipping coffee so I can spend less time mad dashing to avoid being ridiculously late for Mass…). Two Sundays ago it was just a perfect storm; I was able to throw on a mediocre ensemble and slap on some mascara and concealer before hopping in the van. The whole way to Mass I was concerned about my hair which I had forgot to put product on, and therefore was going to be staticky all mass. I was all out of sorts and frazzled (in more ways than one) by the time we got to church. two minutes into Mass I had to go to the back with crying baby girl and i realized my shirt was on inside out. awesome. I reached back and ripped off the tag and thought no one would notice. Ten minutes later I noticed that I had ribbons hanging from my armpits, you know, the ones you use to hang a shirt that won’t stay on the hanger. double awesome, and here I was worried about my hair!

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