Good Night Irene: the Re-Frocking Project

The song Good Night Irene will always hold a certain meaning in my life

(Listen to Goodnight Irene: performed by my neighbor Jake Wildwood, became a theme song for us after Irene. Jake performed this song the day of the flood, before any of us knew what was going to happen, Click here to listen while you read).

So, it’s a struggle for me to write this post, but I’m going to buck up and just do it.

houseOn August 28th 2011 Hurricane Irene dropped our home into the river.  I’m not going to recount all of the details in this post but most of you probably saw pictures of our house in the news at the time as a picture of our home was seem all over the world. (If you are interested in hearing or reading about our plight, here’s a link to VPR who interviewed us extensively about it).

In a few short moments that stormy afternoon we saw our house and belongings collapse into what was normally a little stream and suddenly we had no worldly goods: no home, no beds, no furniture, no clothing. Our community, our state, and even some of my husband’s coworkers in France began giving us everything we needed.

It was a most amazing and humbling experience.

Everyone wanted to help us and needed us to accept from them anything they wanted to give us. I started saying, “I’m not Nancy Regan, I just say yes”, accepting any offer of help, we needed so much and we were given so much. I  also  found myself  saying: I’m living in someone else’s house, sleeping in someone else’s bed, cooking on someone else’s dishes, and wearing someone else’s clothes. We got by quite well with these gifts. That was over two years ago and we mostly feel like all these things are ours now.

In our family we call 2012 call the lost yearn We family went through the daily life in a fog: we all got up every morning and went through the motions but we were all in a state of shock. I didn’t even really think about my fashion: I simply put on what I had.

The second year was about filling out the grueling FEMA paperwork, fighting a loosing battle with the bank, getting the house removed and the property cleaned up. Once all that was settled I began to feel, at the end of 2013, that I could look ahead. It was as if I had been underwater and was finally finally able to come up for some air. I was reinvigorated and started really working and feeling creative again this fall.

I’m not sharing this in order to get sympathy but rather to share with you the project I am about to embark on around how that affects my present day wardrobe and what I have named the Re-frocking Project.

At some point I realized that my wardrobe lacking the quirky Bethness it once had.

I needed to take action! I purged my closets of everything I have never worn. Then I started thinking. How can I reinvent my wardrobe? What do I need? What would be fun, what don’t I wear because it’s missing that “outfit” piece, (yes, I’m an outfit kind of girl), what colors do I want? how can I get my Beth back in my wardrobe? One thought led to another and I came up with the idea of the Refrocking  myself…thus the Re-Frocking Project. I’m going to mindfully create a wardrobe for myself. A combination of boysenberry creations and bought items that I’m really looking forward to and hoping you will enjoy as much as I will…so…in an effort to say good night Irene and move into a better place…

Stay Tuned



PS: Since the purge, I have been exclusively wearing my fleece leggings


4 Responses to “Good Night Irene: the Re-Frocking Project”

  1. Jim

    Frock on girl!….I hope to see more and more of your smile around town!!!

  2. Connie

    You’re awesome! I didn’t lose my clothes but, I definitely lost my “mojo” and now I fully understand how long it takes to get it back. You’re project sounds like a great move for you – Enjoy it!

  3. Brenda

    I’m excited to see the new re-frocked Beth. I’m imagining!

  4. Laura

    you rock the Re-frocking project! So proud of you!

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