I am back to school! And that means getting dressed up everyday. Well, not necessarily dressed UP but dressed for sure!
As you may remember, last week I was called to work as a substitute librarian in an elementary school not far from home. I was so happy to get that call. But got to school and learned the reason why the school’s librarian had retired unexpectedly. I felt just awful. Hate that something positive for me comes along as the result of a very difficult time in someone else’s life. I talked more about those feelings, here, last Sunday. Bittersweet.
In trying to decide what to wear this first week, I’ve been torn between wanting to dress up for that all important first impression and wearing something that is well suited to crawling around in a dusty library. Which might have you asking…
What Does a Substitute Librarian Do?
Of course, I can only speak to what THIS substitute librarian does. For the first weeks of the fall semester, I will be working on the collection. Going through the books, pretty much one by one, to weed out the books that aren’t FRESH.
Yesterday, I withdrew about 200 reference books from the shelves and the library database. Now I am combing through the nonfiction and picture book sections. I have found a book with a 1921 copyright date and there are many books with copyrights in the mid-1990’s. Which makes them 20 years old.
How appetizing does that Christopher Columbus book look to you? Now imagine you are 9 years old and researching C.C. Day. Is that a book you want to use? The Berenstein Bears book is from the 1980’s. Not sure how relevant these characters are today. And those piles are full of books just like the Columbus holiday book and the Berenstein Bears picture book.
I will be labeling books, moving collections of books around once I get the older books removed. Then I will add the children’s names to the circulation database and begin teaching classes.
I want to look professional but also need to wear practical clothing that lends itself to handling dusty, old books.
What Does That Look Like?
That’s the hundred dollar question.
Here’s what I have come up with this first week.
Remember, I got the call late Wednesday afternoon to go to work on Thursday morning. The teachers were working in their rooms all that day so I would be in the library, and not in back to school meetings. But I wanted to dress up since it was my first impression day.
Dress Barn sleeveless jumper (similar, similar) Loft Outlet pale pink cardigan (not too $imilar, similar) StitchFix statement necklace (similar, super similar with earrings to match), Payless sandals (sorta).
On the last day of the work week, the faculty met for meetings all morning and then had time to work in their classrooms (library) in the afternoon. I had plans to get down-n-dirty with the dusty library books so I wore jeans, and a tee shirt and tennies. Was really counting on having made a positive first impression the day before!
This was the students first day back to school. I knew there would be lots of parents, too. I wanted to dress up even though I would be weeding all day.
Broke out my easy, peasy lemon squeezy skirt from Express (sorta similar, kinda similar. Pin-striped oxford shirt (ka-ching, similar) also from Express, peep-toe pumps (similar, super sassy) from DSW.
When I put together an outfit for the first time, I will hang it side-ways in my closet so that it is facing out where I can be reminded to WEAR IT! Today’s outfit had been hanging that way for about a month. Had procrastinated about wearing it thinking it might have been a real goulash of too many textures. But, feeling very brave on Tuesday, I wore this to school.
Something about this makes me happy. Probably the muted earth tones that I am most comfortable wearing. When I have on camo, I feel almost invisible. Which, at a new school, can be kind of nice when you are shy like me.
Was so sad when my comfy neutral Mix No. 6 flats (cute choice, similar) from DSW gave up the ghost = broke. Had to hobble to Walmart at lunch in the broken shoe to quick pick up something CHEAP to replace them. Found these little striped flats for $3.00. Marked down from $5.87.
Paid full price for a second pair in flannel-looking gray. My beloved camos (similar, pricey) are from Loft, my crocheted cardigan (precious option, real cute,) from Dress Barn, and that satin-y sleeveless shell (similar, ‘xpensive) was $10.00 from H&M. The shoes, you know. Oh, and the necklace from Kohl’s (similar, similar). Miche camo bag.
Today is Wednesday. And I finally buckled down last night long enough to iron a new top my PC bought me for back to school. I love it! And I was actually ironing it when I got the call about this job last Wednesday late afternoon. When I hung up the phone, I was so excited I forgot about the ironing! And so this top was still half-wrinkled until last night.
Guess I am having a tall day because I couldn’t get all of me to fit in my photos. Thank goodness, it is a tall day and not a wide day!
Wanted to be sure my cutie blue Payless shoes (nothing like them but cute!, similar) got their due. Old Navy embroidered tunic (really close, similar), raw hem denim (similar, similar) from Loft, faux pearls from Target.
My poor tootsies would probably appreciate a day out of heels so I think tomorrow will be another casual day. Once I start working with the children and having classes, I’ll dress up all the time.
If you are going back to school, what does your first week’s wardrobe look like? My sister is a librarian in Spring, Texas, near Houston. The teachers/librarians in my district dress more casually overall than they do where Valerie works. For example, we can wear jeans any day of the week as long as they are dark wash and in good condition. At Valerie’s school, they can only wear jeans on special occasions. How ’bout you? If you work out of the home, can you wear jeans? Do you think teachers should be permitted to wear jeans in the classroom?
Before we call it a post, there are two more pictures I’d like to share. When I set out my camo outfit for the flat lay photo, I opened the door from my fashion haus leading onto the balcony. The early morning sun came streaming in through the door, and my fashion haus was bathed in a golden glow. So rosy and pretty that I wanted to share it with you.
Beautiful way to begin the day.
Hope this week has been golden for you. Have enjoyed your visit. Hope you will stop over to say hi to the gals I am linking up with, Carrie at Curly, Crafty Mom and Jill at Doused in Pink for their “Thursday Fashion Files”, Jennie at Pocketful of Polka Dots for “Fabulous Friday” and Laura at I Do deClaire for “Confident Twosday”.
Thank you, sweet friends.
Hugs and kisses,