Denali Style

I am obviously not a fashion blogger. But, fashion is definitely something I loved more in my younger, thinner years, but also something I want to explore and play with more.

Now, fashion for my kids, that's easy.  Denali, my 12 year old, looks amazing in everything.  I'm sure you know a bit about this great kid, but let me tell you more.  This smart, easy going, beautiful inside and out kid is the best 1st born you could ask for.  She's responsible and a great big sis to Dylan and Olivia.  She's a tough cookie and has been since the day she was born.  I had Denali when we where living in Papua New Guinea.  It's a really long story, but she almost died after she was born.  She ended up having to be medi-vacced to Australia when she was just 3 days old. She's seen more of the world then most adults I know.  She has a calm spirit and is kind to everyone.

This is a story, I've wanted to share with you, but just haven't known how to. It's definitely been a big part of our lives the last 6 months. There is this fine line between sharing and over sharing in the blog world. So, here's the REAL Oleander and Palm, not just the easy DIYs and crafty crap.  Just this last year, Denali was diagnosed with scoliosis.  It ended up, that her "S" curve was worsening too rapidly and so just a couple months ago, she had to get a back brace.  It's really not fun. It goes from under her arm pits to past her hips.  It's an extremely tight, solid plastic brace and she has to wear it pretty much 24/7 for the next 2-3 years.  We are still so bummed for her.  But, she has such a great attitude.  She hardly ever complains about it.  

Turns out, none of her old clothes would work with the brace and so we've been on the hunt for clothes that will fit over the brace comfortably and also cover it well.  And then once we found things that would work, the brace would tear holes in them.  

So, when Aeropostale asked if I'd like to partner with them, I thought that this could  be a fun project for Denali and I.  We could try to find cute, comfortable clothes for her and then photograph her in them.  I wanted this to be a way for her to feel beautiful and comfortable in her "new" body.  If you don't remember being 12, it's not an easy age. Then add a back brace, it can be hard, to say the least. 

We were so pleasantly surprised when we walked into Aeropostale.  We found piece after piece that were age appropriate and incredibly fashionable.  And my favorite part, the prices!  You guys, this thrifty mom was pleased.  Denali walked away with so many unique, cute items.  Just take a look at my cute daughter.  We shot three outfits while in Banff, Alberta.  She's a pretty great model.  

This first look was taken at Tunnel Mountain Campground in Banff with Mount Rundle in the background.  I want these shorts, if not on my legs, definitely as a pillow. 

The second look was shot in the amazing Banff Springs Hotel.  We celebrated my parent's 39th anniversary with high tea, it was a good excuse to get dressed up.

And the third look we shot at Cave and Basin Hot Springs in Banff.  These jeggings are perfect for fitting over a bulky brace.  Button up jeans don't work for her anymore.  And lots of cute layering pieces make covering brace lumps and bumps a breeze.

All these items are available in Aeropostale stores now (and yes, even the cute fringy moccs).


  1. I just want to 2nd your comment about Denali being beautiful inside and out. She is such a sweet and caring kid. I miss her! I LOVE her outfits! She looks great! I can't believe after all this time they haven't figured out how to make a brace that doesn't make holes in clothes. How frustrating! I love her positive attitude. The 2 to 3 years will be gone before you know it. Thanks for sharing. This made my day!

  2. your photos of Denali are beautiful and you wrote this so beautifully Jeran! I love how you found trendy pieces she can feel confident in.

  3. Love this post. Denali is beautiful. What a quality kid! So thankful for her life and know there is such a good plan for her life.
    wasmeri Ronda

  4. We think Denali is amazing too! Her beauty shines in her appearances and in the way she lives out her faith. Julia

  5. Hello Jeran. I just discovered your beautiful blog after reading about you in Land Of Nod. Great stuff!
    I would love to work with you on a Back To School giveaway for your readers. Please check us out at choozeshoes.com and email me at sharon@choozeshoes.com - I hope to hear from you. - Sharon Blumberg

  6. Denali you look gorgeous! Do you think 30 is too old for me to shop at Aeropostale for myself? Love the outfits you guys chose, especially those shorts! So good.

    I'm so sorry to hear about the scoliosis. My migraines started worsening when I was 12, and I remember how hard it was to realize that I had to take care of myself and have restrictions that my friends didn't. But hold your head up, girl, you will get through it! Thank you both for sharing your experience!


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