July 31, 2013

Looking back at July 2013

There are certain times of the year when one still has the instinctual feelings of a child. Holidays are typically such, as are, I find, things relating to the school calendar. As a youngster this day, for all intents, marked the middle point of summer vacation. There was month and a few days behind us, precisely the same in front, and I can recall with vivid clarity the desire to pause time right here, right now for the rest of eternity.

For better or worse, life has no pause button and time always marches triumphantly onward, another August, another Labour Day weekend, and then the start of the school year once more. Long gone are the days of brand new duo-tangs and freshly sharpened pencils, but I still stop and find myself wishing at times that I could slow down this portion of the summer. 

{Surf, sand, sunshine, cute beachwear, sky high temps, there are so many reasons why July is every bit as fun as the charming vintage postcard pictured here and why one can't help but wish they could freeze this month in time for far longer than its actual thirty-one days. Image source.}

Yes, we're immersed in the thick of the dog days, steamy, sultry, sizzling creatures that they are, but we're also surrounded by an endless horizon of verdant leaves, sunsets so delectably lovely they deserve an award, and nights that still see daylight long after the dinner dishes have been cleared away.

A few blinks from now, we'll be sitting here ushering in September, then October, and summer will already begin to fade from our memories like the chlorophyll in the aforementioned leaves, but for now, right this very instant, we're still touching July, ready to embrace August and savour each delectable moment that the second half of the season holds in store for us.

July was a somewhat busy month for me, though rough health from start to finish did put a cap on how much I was able to get done (especially offline). Still, there were some marvelous moments, such as Canada Day, my 29th birthday back on the 10th, and a few really great mail days - including the arrival of items from three recent blog giveaways that I've had the awesome fortune to win over the past couple of months (from Emileigh, Anthea, and Teresa's fantastic sites) and some immensely lovely birthday gifts from dear online friends around the world.

Here on the blog things were jumping with activity throughout July, with a really diverse array of topics being covered. How diverse you may ask? Well, we looked at everything from The life and work of Foncie Pulice: Vancouver's best-known street photographer to 29 things I love about the 1980s, discussed The lore of the sasquatch, as well as some of the important life lessons I've learned the older I've gotten.

This month saw plenty of vintage outfit posts as well! It kicked off with a charming red, pink and green 1940s look sported at Three Mile Beach in Naramata (a snap from which is pictured below), summery vintage plaid and straw accessories on a windswept pier, and towards the middle of the month, an elegant beaded cardigan and black 1950s platter hat ensemble (that also duked it out with the wind).

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In the later part of the month, I had the great pleasure of sharing a fabulously cute, superbly well made
1940s reproduction sweater that was knit for me by the immensely talented Regiane Trainotti from Vintage & Cool Knitting. And just yesterday, as the month neared ever closer to the end, I posted about the festive vintage ensemble (complete with darling totem pole brooch) that I wore for Canada’s birthday back on July 1st.

Throughout July we also got to know two of Chronically Vintage's newest sponsors better: stellar online vintage and reproduction clothing shop Blue Velvet Vintage, and the absolutely lovely blog Vintage Frills.

We also enjoyed some regularly occurring posts and two new vintage recipes recipes (including the terrific thirst buster that is Raspberry Mint Crush), and are currently in the midst of an awesome giveaway for a $25.00 gift certificate from etsy jewelry and accessories shop, ChatterBlossom

See? I told you it was a busy month full of a wide range of different post topics - just as I like things to be here most of the time. One of the best components of having a personal blog is getting the opportunity to discuss such a broad array of subjects - something that's absolutely perfect for an eclectic soul such as myself.

Elsewhere online, I was thoroughly touched to be included in posts on We Heart Vintage (in one of their delightful "This week I wish I was wearing..." posts), Powder Blue with Polka Dots (who included a photo of me sporting Regiane's wonderful cherry sweater in one of her inspiring style posts), Fairy Filigree (in a lovely post devoted to summer hair flowers), and most recently I had the tremendous honour of being illustrated by talented artist Lorena Balea-Raitz on her beautiful blog.

Lorena's portrait of me is, without a doubt, one of the most meaningful, touching, incredibly lovely gifts I have ever received, as well as being a sincere boon for myself esteem, as I delved into in this post last Friday, in which I spoke candidly about some of the body image and self-esteem issues I've battled throughout my whole life. A great many of you left extremely sweet, uplifting comments for me on that post, each one of which, no word of a lie, helped to further bolster my self-esteem and how I view myself when it comes to my appearance, and I truly cannot thank you all enough. 

In the weeks to come here on the blogging front, numerous other varied posts are slated to appear, including a look at some of the more eyebrow raising questions/comments I've received from strangers over the years (in regards to my vintage style), the history of tennis wear, a wonderfully tasty watermelon salad recipe, and oodles of snaps from this year's Peach City Beach Cruise (our town's annual classic car show). 

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{Hot as a toaster, cool as a vintage Jantzen swimsuit, and filled with the sort of heavenly breezes one waits the whole year for, August is a solid, exciting month that always seems to whisper of possibility and great fun still to come before summer waves goodbye once more a few weeks later. Image source.}

August is an activity packed month around our town, in no small part because the local economy has long relied on the summertime tourist industry to help it afloat the whole year round, and this means it's time for everything from a beloved square dancing festival (it's been going on for decades), which is part of the bigger yearly 
Peach Fest, to Challenge Penticton, a grueling triathlon that is going to be replacing the Ironman competition that Penticton had previously hosted for many years.

It also sees the return of both Tony and Stella's birthdays, as well as my mom and step-dad's anniversary, a total of five possible weekends on which to yard sale (so far this year has lagged behind 2012 big time on that front, both in terms of the number of sales and the amount of vintage items to be had at those that I've been to - but you never know, August might be the month things turn around), and a succulent array of locally grown fruit (chiefly cherries, peaches, nectarines, apricots, and early season pears towards the end of the month).

Yes, it might be nice to pause at July times and hold onto the sparkling sweetness of that month, but if we did that, we wouldn't have the amber sunshine, bathtub warm (lake) water, or the abundance of fresh produce that August delivers, and you know what? The year just wouldn't be the same without those exquisite things and the many other much loved elements of summer that only the eighth month of the year houses.

So here's to August, every last glorious warm, beguiling, endlessly inviting day of it!!!


  1. I cannot tell you how much I envy you all that delicious fresh fruit.
    Sending you lots of lucky vibes for the yard sales!

  2. I love reading your posts. They are so beautifully written and always so inspiring. Your blog really is a joy to read! And I love that you do recaps of the month. It gives me a chance to catch up on things that I've missed. My blog reading has been scarce this month but this was a great way to catch up!!! xoxo

  3. Oh I know the feeling of wanting to pause the summer so well! Just this morning I thought "4 more short weeks and the leaves will start to turn." We're off to the lake this long weekend. :) Hope you do something just as fun!


  4. Dear Jessica, I love your pink snood. And green and red is always a great colour combination.
    In the place where I live today's the first day of the summer holidays and we're awaiting several days with a temperature of more than 30°C. How great for the kids!

  5. I've loved seeing all your wonderful outfits throughout July, and I'm looking forward to seeing more in August. xxx

  6. It's amazing when you put it all down how much you write about and discuss with us in a month:) Here's to a great action-packed August!

  7. I always find it a little funny/cool how our holidays differ so much. Summer holidays in AU are always in Dec/Jan and that was when our long school break was. :)

    Here's to an awesome August!

  8. The end of summer is bittersweet...here's hoping that we all squeeze every drop of enjoyment from these last weeks!

  9. That's Raspberry mint crush was wonderful! We served it at a dinner party and I wasn't even able to get pictures because it was GONE! And Your portrait was a WONDERFUL post, so touching!

  10. Lovely post! I wish it was warm here in Australia! Remember we are the opposite from you guys! (And almost the whole world!) :D :D

  11. Love your July outfits and I am looking forward to August!

  12. Hello dear!
    July (for both of us) is a birthday month.. that itself is a big enough reason to say it's the most important month in a year!
    Also, since it's THE month for holidays - ever since firs grade of school, it has been known as the "lay back and relax, there's no work" month. :)
    I loved your post on photographer (and the amazing pictures that accompanied it!) and your gorgeous sweater. However, the drawing of you had the biggest impact on me - and most of your readers, I'm sure.

    Looking forward to reading about your August!

  13. What a busy month! It really does feel like July has whizzed by...I don't want summer to come to an end! :(

  14. Now that I have relocated from New England to Florida, it is pretty much always summer where I live now. Your post reminded me of how much I used to savor those last summer days, and anticipate the advent of fall with its cooler weather and colorful foliage. One of these days I'm going to take a trip up north in October so I can witness the beauty again. Love your snood, BTW. Have got to get me one of those!

  15. Lorena's portrait of you is absolutely wonderful. I love how it's very stylish and impressionistic but also uncanny and clear. Which, now that I say it, sounds very much like a description of your own beautiful style! :)

  16. I agree the older I get the faster I feel time moving. Outfit wise u had a lovely month especially thank u for introducing me to vintage and cool knitting as I plan to order a great 30s style sweater
    Kate the old fashioned way

  17. I also wanted to stop the summer, Jessica dear! Lots of nice things happen at this time of year, the colors are brighter, more pleasant smiles, everything is better in summer .... and many other things too soon to come to you! Kisses, dear friend.

  18. Here's to a glorious august indeed! I love your thought provoking writing my dear.

  19. Thanks for including the postcard image of the beach at St. Joe - Benton Harbor. My great grandparents had a blueberry farm in St. Joesph, MI and I remember playing on that beach when I was a kid. Oh, how I miss Lake Michigan in the summer.

  20. I already look forward to all your planned blogposts! :)

  21. Summer is already fading away where I am. Leaves are changing, temps are cooling, allergies symptoms are strong, etc...I couldn't be happier. I do wish you all the loveliness of summer before you head into fall.

    Oh and I adore that red calico print dress. I can't get enough of that kind of print. :)

    1. Thank you very much, dear Sean. How marvelous that you're already starting to launch into the seasonal changes that usher in autumn's return. I was just saying to Tony a couple of days ago that I'm really excited for that first (usually about mid-September here) morning when you go outside and know, based on the intensity of the sunlight and the subtle nip in the air, that summer (awesome as it is in so many ways) is fading away for another year.

      I love classic calico prints as well (in no small part because I associate them with the Little House on the Prairie books, which have always been a lifelong literary fave of mine) and really think that if I was a sewer, I'd make numerous garments using vintage sewing patterns and calico fabrics.

      Big hugs,
      ♥ Jessica

  22. The talk of all that wonderful fruit really makes me want to have some right now :3