Charcoal Duster, Link Up On the Edge #28 & The Winners Are…

Before I get to the winners of the Shelbee’s Shoppe Scarf Giveaway and your favorites from last week’s link up, I need to share this fabulous new charcoal duster with you as well as another little critter story.

This gorgeous duster just arrived in Shelbee’s Shoppe! I love how perfectly it layers over a body-con dress to create drama and cover my problem areas! It also looks amazing over black leggings and a long slim black tunic. And it flows oh so perfectly to make you feel like a modern day princess!

But enough about this amazing piece of apparel (and it is AMAZING)…I do need to share another little critter story with you all. Mice are a very common problem where I live. It’s woodsy and it’s watery and it gets really, really cold in the winter. Basically every one I have talked to in my area has had or currently has a mouse problem. But this year seems really bad and I don’t quite understand why with the weather being on the mild side lately. You can read about my first “too close for comfort” encounter a few weeks ago in this post. And much to my dismay horror, they just continue to creep even closer to my comfort zone!

On Sunday, I hosted a Shelbee’s Shoppe Pop Up Party at my house so I had a house full of friends. About 5 hours in, I used my small bathroom which is situated right off of my kitchen. As soon as I walked into the bathroom, I was met with the most horrid aroma of rotting flesh with a strong hint of spoiled fish. I know the scent well…if you have ever smelled the odor of rotting rodent, you recognize its distinct smell immediately. I was a little bit mortified and literally filled the tiny bathroom with a cloud of Lysol spray.

But I just assumed that the expired critter was somewhere inside the wall and there is not much to do at that point except wait for the fumes to dissipate on their on accord. That usually occurs within about 12-24 hours. By the following day (Monday), the odor was gone and I had pretty much forgotten about it. On Tuesday, I did notice that my cat Dave was acting all crazy in the back hallway by that bathroom, but he was more focused on the door that leads to the garage. And we already know that the mice are coming into the garage (reference the chocolate hoarding incident). Naturally, I just assumed there was some kind of critter activity occurring in the garage. Since I am totally a “bury my head in the sand, if I don’t see it I can forget it” kind of girl, I was able to mostly ignore the crazy cat.

Yesterday (Wednesday), I was out of the house for almost the entire day which was enough time for me to really forget all about the strange goings-on in my house…weird cat behavior, horrific odors, etc. Jump forward to this morning (Thursday)…I woke up at my normal 5:00 a.m., showered, put my jammies back on, and headed downstairs for my before-the-kids-are-awake cup of coffee. After my second cup of coffee, both kids were awake and sitting on the couch with me. Then nature called as it does like clockwork after two cups of coffee. And as usual, I wait until I can barely wait any longer to head to the bathroom. Unsuspecting and kind of in a rush, I headed to the bathroom off my kitchen, coffee cup in hand to refill after I finished my morning duty (pun was absolutely intended). And there sat both cats, Dave and Frankie, right at the base of toilet, looking up at me with pride in their eyes. And lying grandly between them was their little critter trophy.

At first glance, I thought it was their little toy mouse that they drag all around the house. But upon closer inspection, I realized the error in my observation. And I screamed. Oh, how I screamed. And I looked closer only to discover from the half decomposed state of the tiny furry body that this most likely was the same dead mouse that I smelled on Sunday.  SUNDAY! That was FOUR days ago! How utterly revolting is that?! While my cats thought they were great champions of the hunt, they merely discovered the dead thing that was probably hiding behind the bathroom trash can for FOUR FREAKING DAYS! Do you even know how many times I have used that toilet from Sunday afternoon through Thursday morning? I am so completely grossed out! But really, isn’t my new charcoal duster adorable?

Outfit details
Duster: Shelbee’s Shoppe Charcoal Split Front Maxi Shirt.
Dress: Old Navy (No longer available, but similar here).
Boots: TJ Maxx (From a few years ago, similar here and
Jewelry: All old.

And the winners of the Shelbee’s Shoppe scarf giveaway are…

Rena of Fine Whatever and Andrea of Andrea’s Wellness Notes! I will be sending e-mails to you both with details for claiming your Shelbee’s Shoppe scarf. Congratulations! And I hope you love your new scarves!

And a big thank you to everyone who participated in the scarf giveaway! I will be having more giveaways in the future. In fact, Rena and I are currently hosting a $60 StyleWe Giveaway. This giveaway will be open until January 30 and winners will be announced on January 31. Please do visit the link above and enter to win if you haven’t already.

Now let’s get to linking…

Thank you all so much for linking up with me each week and for sharing your stories, your outfits, your photos, your inspirations, and everything in between! I love seeing what you all are sharing, wearing, and discussing!

Here are your three favorite links from last week…

Rachael of Threads For Thomas shared some gorgeous pieces in her Stitch Fix Review #5.

Laurie of Laurie POP shared her adorable Happy Planner 2017-7 Changes I Made.

Yvonne of Funky Forty showed us some beautiful options from her Camel and Grey Capsule Wardrobe Essentials.

Thank you all so much for being so inspirational!

Tormented by critters on the edge,


Linking up with these Fabulous Link Ups.


I am a 40 something Army wife and stay-at-home mother of 2 boys and 2 cats named Dave and Frankie. I have a passion for helping other women feel fabulous in the midst of this crazy, beautiful life.

60 Responses

  1. OMG….that mice thing would totally freak me out too, Shelbee!!
    But I guess the cats are doing their job, right?
    I think I’m with you…let’s concentrate on that fabulous duster instead!!

    • Oh Jodie, I had to pick the thing up and it was all hardened and half-rotten! So, so gross! But, yes, isn’t this duster so much fun?! Thanks for stopping by! And now I am having technical difficulties with WordPress. Grrrr….


  2. Love it! That duster has such a great flow and I also love it with the color of that dress. It also really adds a nice and stylish layer to it!


  3. sheela.goh

    I’m sorry, Shelbee, it’s grossgusting and hilarious all at the one same time!!! So I’m sitting here with a repulsed look on my face, even as I’m laughing my head off 🙂 and yes, that is one mighty duster, my friend.

    • Hahaha, Sheela! It is so funny and disgusting at the same time! I was absolutely horrified. I asked my 5 year old why he didn’t pick it up for me and he said, “Because you got it out of here too fast.” I literally could not remove the thing quick enough. But I did pause for a moment and actually contemplated getting my neighbor to remove it! Ha. Then I figured I must be a big girl about it and I used about a half a roll of paper towels to pick it up. I’m sure it was comical if anyone were observing from the outside. Thanks for the lovely compliment, too. I am so in love with this duster right now!

      Have a fabulous weekend. And I hope you are on the mend!


  4. Ugh, cats! So disgusting only an owner could love! Thanks for the shout out!!!

  5. Love this long + layered look, lady!

    Le Stylo Rouge

  6. Oh I was so afraid you would show us a picture of the trophy! Haha, awfull! And congretulations to Rena and Andrea!

    • Ha! Nancy, I was so completely disgusted that I needed to just get that thing out of my house! After I got rid of it though, I wish I had taken a picture just to show the pride in the cats’ eyes! It was kind of funny. Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely weekend.


  7. Ack, sounds like quite the ordeal but I suppose cats are just being cats! Glad you got it cleaned out.

  8. I love the charcoal and burgundy combo! very perfect for winter! 😀

  9. Shelbee,
    1 – LOL, I’m glad I don’t have cats.
    2 – You look great! I’m a huge fan of long cardigans and dusters for all of the reasons you’ve given. The photos are great.
    3 – YAY! I’m so thrilled to be one of the winners. Now if I could just win at the Lottery.
    4 – 😘 Thanks for the prize and for the link up.


    • Such a great list of comments, Rena! Thanks so much for all of it! Cats aren’t so bad, I think. They have managed to keep the mice at bay for 4 years!

      Have a fabulous weekend.


      P.S. Send me an email with which scarf you want and your mailing information!

  10. Oh my! That would have freaked me out! Usually the mice stay away if you have cats! Your duster is fabulous and I love it layered over your dress!

    Doused In Pink

    • We have had mice for as long as I have lived here, so I think the cats have kept out of my living space…until now! Ugh. I can’t believe I had to touch the nasty little thing! Thank you for stopping by, Jill, and for the lovely compliment. Have a fabulous weekend.


  11. Love a duster!!! I had to catch one during the day when I was the only one home on one of the sticky traps. After a couple hours I got it had to put it in a bag then take it outside and step on it ( to end its suffering) eww.

    • Oh my gosh, Jaymie! That is so totally gross! I accidentally stepped on one years and years ago and then I had to scoop it up and take it outside, too. They are just filthy! Ugh. Thanks for sharing your experience and for the lovely compliment. Have a fabulous weekend!


  12. I just love this duster and the contrast with this oxblood color you are wearing. Gorgeous! Thanks so much for the link up.

  13. Shelbee, you are so funny! But I know what you mean about the mice. We haven’t had any problems with them in our current house, but the house I grew up in, the one my mom still lives in always had mice and rats and muskrats and bats….well, you name it, at some point during my growing up years there was always some critter or other in the house. Yikes! I love your duster. Those are so fun. I have a long gray vest, which I think was supposed to be a dress, but only for an extremely skinny person. When I found it at a thrift store, I immediately thought duster vest! And I love it. I love the pop of red with the sweater. Great look. Thanks for sharing and for hosting the link up! Have a great weekend. – Amy

    • Amy, thank you for sharing your critter experience with me! Mice are gross, but I don’t know if I could handle rats! Ugh! Although, in college, we lived in these disgusting row homes (more like slum row) and the cockroaches were out of control. If we had to go into the basement to do laundry, we would turn on the light and wait until the sound of the cockroaches scattering stopped before we would go down the steps! That was pretty disgusting. And no matter how often the exterminator came, they just could not get rid of these things. Ick!

      Thank you for the lovely compliment as well! And your duster vest sounds amazing! Have a fabulous weekend.


  14. What a funny/horrific story! We have mice around here too. My last encounter was finding a dead mouse lying on the playroom floor. No trauma, no cat. It just keeled over right there. And a mouse built a nest in the blower motor of my car so when I went to turn on the heat it sounded like a jet plane taking off. Totally disgusting lol.

    Thank you for hosting this party and for sharing with mine!!
    Happy Weekend 🙂

    • Oh Paula, mice anywhere no matter how they got there are just plain disgusting! Fortunately when they hid the chocolate under the hood of my car, they had not had a chance to build a nest yet. That would be quite a mess! Thank you for stopping by and sharing your critter story. It is good to know that I’m not the only one freaked out by them.


  15. That’s a fabulous duster, Shelbee! The mouse story made me want to hide… I’m really bad when it comes to little critters…

    I’m so excited that I won!!! Thank you!!

    Thanks for the link up & have a wonderful weekend!

    Andrea’s Wellness Notes

    • Thank you, Andrea! And congratulations again on winning. I will be shipping your scarf today! And these critter encounters are making me want to hide, too. If only the critters would just go away and hide somewhere (somewhere that is not in MY house)!


  16. You look fabulous in that duster!!! I need one 🙂 XO Susan

  17. Thanks for hosting and sorry about your critter adventure. I hope that you don’t encounter any more rodents for a while.

  18. Hi, I have a mouse story to end all stories. I got up in the middle to the night to use the bathroom (as I am sure a lot of middle aged women do). I live alone and didn’t bother to turn on the light before using the facilities. My bathroom is extremely small and the light switch is right by the toilet. I flipped it on with my elbow and turned to the sink to wash my hands. As I did so I saw a mouse IN THE TOILET BOWL!!!! That in itself is bad enough, but what is most traumatizing is I don’t know if it was there BEFORE I sat down or AFTER and it was still alive. ARGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHH! That was the sound I made for quite a few minutes following my discovery. I am afraid the mouse was sentenced to a watery death. I took the hottest, soapiest shower I could stand afterward..cause you know…ewwwww! Lesson learned: ALWAYS turn on the light.

    • OMG, Robin! That is so horrifying! I seriously would be afraid of using the toilet in the night after that! I agree that always turning on the light is a good thing. That is literally the stuff that nightmares are made of. But thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your experience. While it is horrifying, it is still kind of funny, no?


  19. This olive maxi top is amazing. Great with the burgundy dress. Something I would love to wear too. o)

    Anna xoxo

  20. What a story! We’ve only had 1 or 2 mice in our house, but with our cold winters and forest preserve behind our house, I am always surprised it’s not more!

    • Laura, you may have more than you think! Not to freak you out or anything…we have had them the entire time we have lived here and this is my first “real” encounter with one! Gah. So gross. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experience. Have a fabulous mouse-free weekend!


  21. The duster looks fabulous on you! It is perfect for almost all seasons –
    I get cold even in summer and this would be wonderful for out to dinner.
    Thanks for all you – have a super weekend, Mimi

  22. Dave is a great name for a cat!! I can’t give any help on the mouse problem I’m afraid. I love your charcoal duster, it’s a great item that gives such a contemporary edge to any outfit!


  23. Girrrrrrl, you are so effing cute. Love the duster! Thanks for sharing!

  24. such a great look SHelbee and grats to the winners!!!

  25. I hear you on the mice – I would have screamed too – and probably left the house :)! Love this duster on you and it’s such a pretty color. I hope you have a happy, mice free weekend!

    • Lana, thanks so much! Believe me, I contemplated just leaving the house! Ha. But I was afraid the cats would hide it or something. I had to be a big girl and just get that icky thing out! Have a fabulous weekend.


  26. Your new charcoal duster IS adorable and OMG about the mouse. GAH!

  27. This duster is definitely enviable. I love it but way too short for it. Would be great if you can hop over and link up to

  28. Oh, I would have been screaming for sure, too! I hope they get the hint and move on. You look terrific in this beautiful duster! I love the length and color.

  29. Ew, a dead rodent is not a pleasant find…and I speak from experience! My mum lives in a very old house which has regular mice visitations. When I was last there I narrowly avoided putting my hand in a mouse trap! My daughter told her off for trying to kill cute creatures 🙂 My cat catches mice sometimes but brings them to me alive so I just pick them up and put at the bottom of the garden. He’s obviously so well fed he doesn’t need to snack! I love your duster btw!

    Emma xxx

    • Emma, thanks for the compliment and the mouse-story! I am glad that I am not alone in these critter escapades! Now every time I hear the slightest noise, I think it is a mouse in the walls. Which is fine, as long as they stay in the walls. But now I am constantly bracing myself for having to pick one up again. So gross!


  30. Nothing like a good critter story! hehe. We used to live more in the wooded area and had about 2 acres, so I know how that can be. Well at least you wont be worried about it . The duster looks lovely with your burgundy dress. I dont own one but I like the look. Have a great weekend!
    Thanks for linking with Turning heads tuesday
    jess xx

    • So far, I have been critter-free, but still I live in dreaded anticipation! Ha. I guess there could be worse things to deal with. Thanks so much for the lovely compliment, Jess. I have a bunch of a dusters but I am always drawn to them so I occasionally add a new one every now and then! Have a fabulous weekend.


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