1920’s Renegade Flapper Girls & A Joyful Day

Michelle Stimpson & Hannah

One of my favorite days of the summer happened last week. It was a special day with my 13 year-old niece, Hannah—a summer date together before school started once again. It was pouring rain, so all plans for outdoor fun got shelved, and we found ourselves at the largest mall in the country, Mall of America.

Being in the moment

For that afternoon, I forgot about office details or tasks that needed to be tended to at home. I was away from my computer and didn’t have to think about the bills. Instead, I got to see the world through the eyes of a delightful teenager who hasn’t even had to ponder the world of adult responsibility. Every moment with Hannah was a pleasure, and it reminded me to move away from the things that bog me down…and slow down and play a little.

We both made a conscious decision to enjoy the rainy day inside. And I knew we meant business when shortly after entering the Mall, Hannah said, “Auntie Michelle, this day is going to be so much fun!”

We ate our Mexican lunch in the food court and talked about boys, our music tastes, Facebook, and the upcoming school year. We walked all four floors (twice!), enjoying the buzzing energy of the Mall and we laughed a lot. We sampled truffles in a chocolate shop (Lindt’s Lindor truffles get the thumbs-up from both of us!). We collapsed in giant oversized beanbag chairs we found on sale. And at the end we got lost trying to remember where we parked.

Best of all was our decision to do an old-time photo, dressed up as 1920’s flapper girls at a bar during Prohibition (see above). We elbowed each other and giggled throughout most of the experience, and it was tough to keep a serious face during the photo shoot (it was funny later when I dropped Hannah off at home and she said to her mom, “Mom, um, we got into a bit of trouble today…but at least there’s a photo to show what happened.”)!

In our own little world

Who knew that when we left the Mall, there had been reports of tornados in the metro area with extensive wind damage while we were inside whooping it up? Not us.

Little escapes can be good. Especially with someone you love and who might be able to unknowingly lift you out of ‘yourself.’ I know that after our outing, I certainly came back to my home and work routine refreshed, rejuvenated, and grateful for the experience.

Plan for that important time on your calendar, and then be open to wherever the car or the wind or your desire takes you. It will give following your joy a whole new meaning.

Photo courtesy of Professor Bellows Old Time Photography.
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8 Responses to “1920’s Renegade Flapper Girls & A Joyful Day”

  • Hi Michelle!
    What a great day you had with your niece! How fun! This summer my 17-year old sister came to stay with me for a week. It was similar to your time with your niece–we talked about fun things but the conversation was light so that it was age appropriate, and just as you wrote, the experience took me out of myself. I was really able to live in the moment with her here. We had a lot of fun. Thank you for sharing your day of fun–and what a fantastic photo–that's a good one for the memory books!

  • Liv says:

    Look at you, sexy lady! What a cool aunt!
    Fun post. I have a 13-year-old niece, too, and when she visited this summer it was fun to talk some of the stuff that matters to her at this stage in her life.

  • What a fabulous afternoon it sounds like you had, and I love the photo! Holy cats, I was right there with you both, enjoying truffles, giggling and eating Mexican food, talking about boys, etc.
    Those rejuvenating moment of escape are so important, and I certainly haven't taken enough of them for myself in the last few years. Just today I had a tiny glimpse of one while doing something with someone I love… And it gave me pause. I liked it! I was having fun without thinking about it.
    You've reminded me of a valuable lesson that I need to follow more often. Thank you, Michelle!

    PS – I love that your niece is so cool to hang out with. That says a lot about her personality and your hip factor as an aunt!

  • Lisa Saline says:

    Hi Michelle, what a fun story to share and a great picture too. Isn't it wonderful to be able to "let your hair down" and enjoy every moment. Your niece will cherish those memories for years to come and best of all has a picture to hang on her wall.

  • Joy says:


    What a spontaneously fun day; your niece is blessed to have such a cool aunt, and you are blessed to have enjoyed your time with your niece! I have to think it was the chocolate factor:) You are right–it is important to escape, and just as important to escape with someone you love. Then to be open to the day; I am sure you did not plan the "flapper" picture, but what a fun experience. And a neat memento from your day. Thank you for sharing.

  • Anonymous says:

    Wow. what great inspiration for all of us. Reminded me so much of the best times with my granddaughters..

  • Thanks for taking the time to read this and it's so fun to share the story with all of you! Welcome to the new readers, too. So happy to have you here!

  • Sharon says:

    Awesome picture,Michelle…you sexy thing!!!! Your blog is soo true….especially at the times when I seem to NOT want to be spontaneous and "let go"…that is when I need to the most…and when I do….the gift back is like stepping back into life with a fresh heart. Love you! sharon xoxo

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Michelle Stimpson: Editor/Writer

Michelle Stimpson Hi and thanks for visiting - so glad you're here! This blog is especially for cool people who want to experience joy and live a life of purpose. Welcome!

Here you'll find great stories that will inspire you and remind you that life is good, and there's an abundance of joy all around us. Simply put: When you follow the things in life that make you come alive and bring you joy...the magic begins to unfold.

Start by checking out the "Best Of" page and be sure to consider subscribing above. Thank you and cheers to joy!

Michelle Joy Stimpson
Executive Editor & Writer
Life Coach, LifeShine

Bill Stimpson: Partner-In-Crime

Bill Stimpson Hi! Not only will you see me “show up” in many of Michelle’s stories and posts here, but I also serve as Michelle’s editor, helping her clarify intentions and make her posts shine.

One of the great joys in my life is being involved with this blog! It’s a constant reminder for me to focus on the things that bring me joy. It also feels great to be sharing so many of these joys with you - in hopes that you, too, will find ways to focus on your own joyful experiences.

Here's to an abundance of joy in your life!

Bill Stimpson
Hubby & Associate Editor

The Parent Company

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