Post Promotion

For today’s post, RLB is featuring an article by a guest blogger on Lou’s blog. Which I suppose you could classify as ‘stealing,’ but we prefer the term Promotion. Because that’s what it is! Promotion for both the blog, Cheap Wine and Pantylines, and for Crystal, author of the post. It fits so perfectly with the themes of RLB, we couldn’t resist. Besides, we have Permission, which makes all the difference. Read on, wear clothes that fit, and feel effing good about yourself today:

Don’t Tell Me What to Do 

Swimsuit Revolution

There’s this woman, Brittany Gibbons, Editor in Chief of the Curvy Girl Guide, and she is braver than me. The first reason she gets a shout out during RLB Shout Out Week is for her online magazine and their manifesto. Make that a womanifesto. I want to organize a group photo of every woman I love (there would be a lot of flights involved), and pair it alongside those words. They make me really, really happy.

She also has a very entertaining blog that I just had to tear myself away from, lest I get sucked into the vortex of amusing blog posts that distract me from ever finishing the post I am attempting to write in honor of her posts.

Brittany Gibbons – Lovely, Clever, and Daring

Reason numero dos that Ms. Gibbons is such a bad ass? She’s started a revolution. By wearing her bathing suit in public. And I do not mean on a beach. I mean in Times Square, y’all. On Television! And then On Stage! At a TED talk. Which is now on the Internet. Meaning the Entire World now has access of footage to her in her bathing suit.

Last fall I was in Hawaii, and I went kayaking in the ocean, and it was quite an adventure, and I felt pretty effing brave. Once safely ashore, the two women I was with wanted a commemorative photo. You know what I did before we took it? I threw on my sundress. Because they were both smaller than me, and I didn’t want posterity to record me looking… well, bigger than them.

So it’s pretty clear what I have to do. Luckily I’m going to happy hour first.

Here it is. For Brittany. For all the women inspired by her. As S once said: For Science.
An image of me, in a bathing suit, facing the mirror, adjusting my ponytail. Taken tonight, by my husband, with my iPhone. No sucking in. No skinny pose. No push-up bra. No mirror face (you know you have one, too). No instagramming, no enhancing, just me. Smudged mirror and all.

A Gorgeous Model Who Eats and Blogs About It

My attention was drawn to Robyn Lawley this morning because she is the new face/body of a UK lingerie line for women sizes 8 to 20. Clearly she’s a stunner, and her size (16) doesn’t matter to me nearly as much as how strong and healthy she looks, and how intelligent she appears to be. It’s so sensible how she calls out the idiocy of the term ‘plus size.’ As quoted in an article for The Australian, “I’m a normal size. I wish we could all be known as models, rather than ‘plus-size…” Der. It’s not like the rest of us need to be identified as “Plus Size Communications Specialists.” Down with the qualifier!

Aside from being of sound mind and rockin’ body, Ms. Lawley won me over once and for all with her food blog. Yes, that’s right. A model. With a food blog. Full of pictures and recipes of things that She Eats. And this site is not about all things kale with a side of juice fasts. This is real, sumptuous, delectable Food.

To sum her blog-self up, Ms. Lawley writes:
“There is no love sincerer than the love of food.”
George Bernard Shaw.
I am a self-confessed foodie, I live in New York and I am a model, cooking and eating is the best gift in life and I want to share that gift.

This is a gift in and of itself. One of the truest messages we can send to women and girls who want to look and feel beautiful is Take Care of Yourselves! Food is meant to be savored and enjoyed. It is sustenance, not something to fear or shun in attempt to look like 7% of the female population.

Let’s all share and promote more images and sensibilities of women like Robyn Lawley, and continue to celebrate real health, beauty, and food.


Proof That You Can Be Curvy, Outspoken, and Successful

If ever I were to find myself navigating the perils of Hollywood fame, I can only hope I would do so with the ferocity and grace of Ms. Kate Winslet.

Not only has she been a critic of absurd standards of beauty since the attacks on her physique back in the Titanic era, but she has gone so far as to spearhead a campaign against plastic surgery among her fellow actresses, known as the British Anti-Cosmetic Surgery League.  (Side note: I can’t resist including Jezebel’s vision of this club… “we imagine the (British Anti-Cosmetic Surgery League) is mainly taken up by drinking, drawing Sharpie moustaches on overly-Photoshopped luxury ads, and shining each other’s Oscars” …heehee)

Winslet has condemned photoshopping of her own image, turned a standard clothing campaign into a platform for promoting body positivity, and has even been called out as a Body Image Warrior. Personally, I think she should start signing her letters that way: “Sincerely, Kate Winslet, BIW” It’s a title I wouldn’t mind claiming for myself – second only to MW (Master of Wine).

Winslet has come under fire for “lying about her exercise regimen,” claiming to workout with DVDs at home, aiming for at least 20 minutes a day. She rightfully retaliated, and was ultimately granted a libel settlement. I applaud her for this because I believe her. I believe her because she’s one of the few actresses out there whose body even comes close to looking like mine, and my workout habits are pretty similar.

In addition to her physical confidence, Winslet is also a fierce promotor of her own talents. And why shouldn’t she be? The woman draws you into the screen with every character she embodies, and to anyone who knows what a hard job acting can be, it’s clear that she works really, really hard. Many years ago, back before the Internet existed (yes, I’m that old), I read an interview with Kate Winslet shortly after the release of Heavenly Creatures, one of her first films. She candidly spoke about how she Insisted they give her the role. She said something to the effect of “No one will do this as well as I will.” And again, when casting happened for Titanic, she told James Cameron he “couldn’t give the role to anyone else.” She had to be the one to do it.

Can you imagine a world where every woman had such a strong understanding of her own abilities? Where we all voraciously pursued the things we deserved, knowing ourselves to be dedicated, passionate, and capable?

Let’s all raise a glass (MW!) to Ms. Winslet, for being an inspiration to her daughter, for challenging the status quo, and for being about as real as it gets.

Dieting Schmieting Grumble Grumble Ugh

First things first: I am a relatively fit, slender woman who has never really been concerned with Weight Loss. At least not for the majority of my adult life. Then I entered my thirties. For the last few years I’ve been steadily putting on pounds here and there that refuse to be sloughed off. My doctor tells me this is normal for women in their thirties. She also tells me what I’ve heard time and time again from a variety of sources: exercise is no longer enough. If I want to shed the flab, I have to Change My Diet.

Diet. Shudder. Never was there a more vile four letter word. Count my calories? Who has the time? Deny myself the pleasures of my nightly glass of wine (or two) and my experiments in culinary delights? What is the point?? Life is short! I’m healthy, active, and usually quite content with my gentle curves and bits of extra padding. Usually.

Why has monitoring my food intake always been so impossible for me? After some consideration, here is my most logical set of answers:

1. I’ve always been really good at the exercise part. I do yoga, I walk a lot, I jump rope (for real! it’s super fun), I ride my bike, I go on hikes in the mountains… You get it; my life is active and I like it that way. This makes me feel like I’m justified in eating what I want. Which brings me to number

2. I eat really, really well. Loads of people have labeled me a Food Snob because I do my best to not ingest crap. No fast food, ever.* If I enjoy a rare soda it’s an all natural ginger brew (mmmmmmm… ginger). I try to eat local and organic foods that are processed minimally, if at all. I prepare my food at home as much as I can. I do this because I believe it matters what I put in my body and I like to feel healthy. Glamour magazine recently published an article about this very practice and titled it, aptly, The Snob Diet. This is how I eat. Not to stay thin, but because I love really, really good food. Which is a nice segue to number

3. For those of you who read my confessional, you know I worked long and hard at developing a positive, healthy relationship with food. It makes me nervous to think about compromising that relationship. I’ve come so far and am so happy living a life where food and I are really, really good friends. Still. Some things have changed.

It isn’t just the “in my thirties” jiggling that has been weighing on my mind (oh yeah, pun intended). The truth is that if all goes according to plan, my ever so handsome husband and I would like to have a baby in the next year or so. I know my body, and I know that baby weight will be a sonofabitch to deal with. I want to be in my best possible shape before scaling that mountain. So. This morning I rather spontaneously decided to try my first ever, real live, honest to goodness Diet. My friend Kamarie had posted on good ol’ FB about her own goals and her resulting grumpiness, and it sparked an interesting thread of thoughts from myself and several other ladies. Many of them talked about this website called, which is one of those handy online food/calorie/exercise tracking thingys. With my doctor’s advice and baby-making on the brain, I signed up.

Let me tell you, this was a rude awakening. My little experiment suddenly became Frightful as I looked at the results of my weight x height x weight and fitness goals… If I want to drop a measly ten pounds, I’m supposed to live on 1230 calories a day?? Uh, that’s all? I became instantly hungry just thinking about it. The website recommends aiming to lose one pound a week, so… ten weeks. May 3rd. I can do this until May 3rd, right? …Right?

Well, you, lucky readers, shall find out with me. Needless to say I know going into this that I generally suck at even Thinking about monitoring my food intake, so it obviously isn’t going to be easy. What I’m the most interested in is how this will affect me – my moods, my energy level, my image of myself… Will ten pounds make that much of a difference? Will the magic of calorie counting really drop the pounds like (whole grain, flax-seed) hotcakes? Halfway through my first day I sure hope so. After breakfast, lunch and a snack I only have 370 calories left for my dinner. Au revoir, nightly glass of wine…

Oh and Ps. I’ll probably have to get a scale. For posterity. I hate scales. Number One Scale Goal? Do not let the scale make me crazy. Wish me luck!


*The only fast food exception is a road trip. I have been on maybe three road trips in the last decade, and yes, for lack of alternatives I ate some fast food. I figure three times in ten years is pretty acceptable. It’ll be a beautiful day when they open a Trader Joe’s in every town the size of Fillmore, Utah…