Thursday, December 29, 2011

Montagne Jeunesse Cucumber Peel Off Face Mask

I received the Montagne Jeunesse Cucumber Peel Off Face Mask through the Influenster VoxBox program. I was definitely looking forward to trying it out because I've been looking for some sort of "special" face treatment outside of my daily cleansing/toning routine. I wanted something I could use maybe once a week to give my face some special treatment.... and wala... enter the Montagne Jeunesse mask lol.

I give this product two thumbs up. It was easy to apply, and 30 minutes later it was SUPER easy to remove. The whole mask came off in one piece, I don't think I've EVER had that happen. It came off really easy and left my face nice and soft. The product claims to "remove dead skin and impurities" and from the.... gunk... I saw left on the mask, I can say it definitely upholds that promise. I recommend their masks if you're looking for a special face treatment. Other than the cucumber peel off mask they also have:
  • Passion Peel Off
  • Dead Sea Mud
  • Fruit Smoothie
  • Strawberry Souffle
  • Chocolate Mud
    among other "flavors." 

 And they are only $2.25, buy one get one free on this site. As my grandmother would say, "Can't beat that with a stick!" :-D

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


It is much easier to thread a needle if you have trimmed the end of the thread with scissors, versus trying to thread with a jagged piece of thread.

In order to facilitate maintaining length of  hair, you have to trim off ragged/split/damaged ends.

A well cooked piece of meat is much more appetizing if the fat and skin have been trimmed away.

Do you see where I'm going with this? lol

TRIM. Trimming the dead, damaged, useless parts of life makes life easier, better, and more enjoyable.

In 2012, if it isn't making you happy, and it isn't making you money, trim it away.


Monday, December 26, 2011

iPhone 4s Woes

The iPhone 4s has brought me many woes. There was my struggle to get one when they first came out after having not pre-ordered one. And there is my current quest to get a new one, or a repair of my currently cracked/shattered screen. On both occasions my emotions have been tied to the availability of my iPhone 4s. Sadness when it was unavailable, or in the current case, shattered, and happiness when I was able to obtain one, or the prospect of a (free) repair.

That is despicable! I am so ashamed of myself! With aaaallll the blessings in my life, how DARE I allow myself to be so easily manipulated by the status of an electronic? In the back of my mind I say all the right things: I don't NEED an iPhone 4s, it is just a gadget, I have way too much going for me to let a toy get me down..... but that doesn't stop me from pouting from my iPhone 4s woes.

*slaps self on the wrist*

I guess this just exhibits my fortunate-ness - if I can dwell on something as trivial as a gadget, with so many other things going on in life and in the world. I know I'm not the only one who goes goo-goo for gadgets, as exhibited by the huge number of people cursing this Christmas because they didn't get an iPhone or iPad 2, but that doesn't make me feel any better. I'm just in a despicable majority lol.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas When You're Not a Kid

I'd consider myself a big kid, especially when it comes to holidays and holiday rituals. Christmas tree decorating, pumpkin carving, Easter egg dying, I love that stuff. Being 25 years old, it's been a long time since I've had a real "kid's Christmas." But I love the season nonetheless.

This has been probably the most unideal holiday season of my life. Having to attend a funeral on Christmas Eve-eve among other things definitely has made it a challenge to keep up the positive composure that I'm accustom to having.  But I have to realize that as an adult, life doesn't always go according to plan, and I'll never have another "kid's Christmas" again, but that doesn't mean Christmas can't still be great. As life changes, our expectations need to change, and that doesn't mean lowering them, but rather, re-imagining them.

This has been both one of the best and worst years, and I'm excited for what 2012 has in store.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of you, my lovely blog followers. :-D


Thursday, December 22, 2011

ABCs of Fall/Winter: M is for MOVIES

There is nothing better, maybe besides music, to get me in the winter/Christmas spirit than my favorite holiday movies! Some of my favorites are:

Scrooged - starring Bill Murray. It's a classic

Along the same lines - A Divas Christmas Carol. I've always thought it was a great twist on the A Christmas Carol tale.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas - another classic, both the original cartoon movie, and the movie with Jim Carrey

A Year Without Santa Clause - Snow Miser and Heat Miser? You can't go wrong lol

What are some of your favorite Christmas/Holiday/Winter movies?

Check out my The Best Versions of the Best Christmas Songs post for more holiday cheer :-)

Monday, December 19, 2011


The feeling of grief is SO HUGE compared to how short the word is. It's all encompassing. Consuming. Your head spins and your brain hurts trying to contemplate actual finality. Your heart breaks. Physically it feels like a heart pinch. Like death pinches a piece of your heart off with each loss that you can never get back. It's pain, and confusion, and disbelief all wrapped into one. It's a sensation of falling that never quite goes away, you just begin to get used to it over time.

Friday, December 16, 2011

ABCs of Fall/Winter: L is for LIGHTS

As the temperature gets a little colder, this ABCs series will slowly turn from Fall to Winter... hopefully I finish before I have to include Spring too lol.


One of my favorite parts of the season. Lights on houses, lights in doors, lights on Christmas trees, candle light. It's all a win. I sadly have not gotten decorations for our house yet but I plan to on Saturday. I don't think any fall/winter/holiday festivities are complete without some sort of festive lighting. And no matter what people celebrate during this time, light, is often important.

How are lights incorporated into this time of year for you?

For A - K of the ABCs of Fall/Winter series go HERE.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Product Review: NYC New York Color Liquid Lip Shine

I received the "Nude York City" shade of NYC New York liquid lip shine complimentary in my latest Influenster VoxBox. I was very excited that they gave a full size to sample!

It is a nude shade, so it doesn't have much color on the lips, although you can see the shade on your drinking glass or napkin. Lip shine is a good way to describe it because it does give a nice shiny gloss. It is a little on the heavy side, but I believe that contributes to how long it lasts, which is long. I applied it in the morning and it lasted well through the afternoon. It has no taste, but a pleasant smell, which is imperative for something to close to your nose lol. I really like the type of applicator it uses, almost like a large Q-tip, it makes for a nice controlled application.

Great price at $2.49 and available at most drugstores.

I give the Nude York City NYC New York liquid lip shine 4 out of 5 stars. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

If you like the internet, you like the internet...

Very often, especially in the summer months, you'll see people on social networks  (ironically) telling people to get out of the house and away from the computer to enjoy the outdoors, or interact with people in person. I do find this to be valid. To me, it is important to get out and be social in person, enjoy the outdoors, etc. BUT, who are we to judge the "best" or "most valuable" way for someone else to spend their time?

If a person finds absolute joy in never leaving their computer desk over the weekend, is that so bad? If after a hard week's work they only want to communicate with other people through screens and microphones is that so wrong? I don't see anything wrong with a person who is ABLE to be social, but prefers to lock themselves down with gadgets, doing so.

It took me a long time to come to terms with this though. My husband and I are very opposite in that to me the weekend isn't a weekend if I don't get to get out of the house and do something. To him, the more times he has to leave the house over the weekend, the less of a weekend it is lol. At first I couldn't understand for the life of me why someone would not want to get out and be social in the "real" world instead of the virtual one. But you know what? Everyone is different, and all forms of entertainment, as long as they don't hurt others, are valid.

When you have off-time, do you prefer the real world or the virtual world?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Why I love Groupon

Deal type e-mail lists (Groupon, Living Social, etc) are a new trend that seems to be expanding day by day. I think they're success definitely has something to do with the current economic climate. Getting more for less is appealing now more than ever.

I really like Groupon because it offers the average person luxury services/items that they either couldn't normally afford, or can't normally justify spending money on. So far I've gotten self service dog washing, food at an Indian restaurant and house cleaning services. Common offers are spa treatments, manicures/pedicures, trips, etc. I enjoy the ability to do things I might not be able to normally justify doing, at half the price.

I do wonder how the half-off deal wave is affecting businesses. I'm sure the hope is that the exposure of the offer will bring new and lasting customers, but I don't think things really pan out that way.

What has your experience been with deal-of-the-day type websites? How many are you subscribed to?

Haven't tried one yet? Take 2 minutes and sign up to Groupon.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Holidays are What YOU Make Them

Tis the season.... to be bitter?

For me, this is a wonderful time of year. I love the holidays. Everything to be celebrated between Thanksgiving and my birthday (Jan. 14th) is awesome to me. I love Christmas.

I've been seeing a lot of chatter, both on social networks, and "real life" of people complaining that the holidays are too commercial, or they hate all the ad campaigns and think this time of year is just an excuse to spend money.

While businesses, if they are smart, will take advantage of the habit of people to spend more during this time of year, what does that have to do with YOU? The holidays are what YOU make them. No one is forcing you to spend your holidays emptying your pocket book. Do what you do to enjoy this time of year. Focus on being thankful, spending time with family, the birth of Jesus (for some), holiday music and traditions, and even rest. I hate to see people allow themselves to be turned off completely because they see an uptick in commercials or sales. Don't allow your holiday spirit to be Grinched away like that. Even if you don't celebrate a specific holiday around this time, who says you can't take advantage of the tenants of good cheer and good will towards men?

You only live once. Be happy. Enjoy.


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Blogger Spotlight: Marie of merelymarie.com

Hooray! This is my very first Blogger Spotlight! Today I will spotlight Marie of merelymarie.com

Marie is definitely one of my favorite bloggers. I probably found her via a natural hair post, but her blog is about so much more than hair, which is why I like it so much. She blogs about fashion, beauty, life and food. I don't think I've seen a recipe of hers yet that I didn't love. She actually turned me on to parmesan shrimp which I make with pasta tossed with a little olive oil - it is now one of my husband's favorite dishes!

See what Marie had to say about her blogging experiences:

How long have you been blogging? 
Over two years.

What made you start a blog?  
Reading blogs. I was inspired by people who shared their lives & their knowledge; and were earning income from it by blogging. The beautiful photos, and the discussions/interactions that happened between complete strangers also interested me. I thought it all super cool & wanted to experience the other side of blogging.  

What was your vision when you first started blogging and how has that changed over time?   question, with a rather long answer! LOL When I first started blogging, my vision was to be a “big-time” food blogger. I wanted my old blog to be the next Smitten Kitchen; in fact, I wanted it to be bigger! After a year or so, I discovered that that wasn’t going to happen because the blog started to feel like an obligation. I loved food, and cooking & sharing that experience with every new recipe, but that wasn’t all that I wanted to share. I wanted to blog about style & shopping, talk about hair, and express my personal thoughts on random subjects like jealousy, and being a "quiet person"; as well as blogging about food.

I’d finally realized that I started that blog off a bad, and not to mention impossible vision…only Smitten Kitchen can be Smitten Kitchen! LOL I had to be me; so, the “wanna-be” blog was closed, and I started a fresh one; a blog that was…that is all me, and all that I truly care about. Now, my vision is clear & genuine: to continue blogging about what I love, be who I am, try my best, continue to grow the blog and hopefully monetize it successfully enough to earn a decent, steady stream of income.

You seem to have a nice blog following, what do you think contributes to that (besides your awesome content :-D) ? 
Thanks! Yes, good content is key & good photos go a long way. Updating regularly (at the very least, once a week) also helps, as well as keeping readers in the know when new posts will be delayed. Most avid blog readers don’t like to be left hanging without updates! LOL I get complimented on the aesthetics of my blog, so I definitely think a good design draws new readers to follow.

I’m also a member on different online forums/sites that interest me. Other members can find a link to my blog in my profile, and I inbox online friends with personal invites. I’ve also recommended my blog for special blog features & spotlights, like this one;)

What advice do you have for the aspiring blogger?
Pick a topic, or a few that you really love, open an account, & start blogging! It’s cool to be inspired by other blogs, but don’t do like I did & totally base your blog after theirs. That’s a sure-fire way to lose interest in blogging.   Try to update on a consistent basis, and keep a blog notebook nearby at all times. You never know what random thoughts (& things that happen throughout your day) could make a great blog post. You want to have something to jot it down (or type it in), before it escapes you.   Lastly, keep at it. If blogging really interests you, don’t stop.

Tell us about your blog design company. What made you start it?
MerelyBlogDesign is a blog design service that caters to niche, personal, and small business bloggers. I design blog logos, headers, buttons, and layouts to meet the needs of my clients.   Supplementing my blog with a product/service was always in my vision. The idea to create these specific services became clear to me when I realized how much time I spent in the design section of my Blogger dashboard; I loved going in there & changing things around & adding CSS codes for a new look (almost more than writing posts)! Only after that did I remember that I am a professional graphic designer. LOL All the compliments that I’d received on my blog’s design rolled into my head soon after, to seal the deal; and MerelyBlogDesign was born. 

Where on the internet outside of your blog can you be found?   I’m on Facebook, Pinterest, & MerelyBlogDesign  

If YOU would like a blogger spotlight fill out the short entry form HERE.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The ABCs of Fall: K is for Kids

The fall makes me think of kids- having my own kids, and how it felt to be a kid at this time of year. The anticipation of Thanksgiving break, and then winter break. Crafting gift wish lists. Decorating. Holiday parties at school. Playing in the leaves. Delicious holiday foods. My grandma checking to see I'm wearing a warm enough coat, hat and gloves --- well actually, she still does that, even from three states away lol

I'm excited for the falls of the future where my husband and I will have added to our family, and we get to show our kids old traditions, and create new ones.

Check out A-J of the ABCs of Fall series HERE.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Have cappuccinos & lattes in your office for FREE!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tassimo. All opinions are 100% mine.

brewer straight on.jpg (2 documents, 2 total pages)

Beverage company Tassimo is offering FREE demos of their Tassimo Professional single-cup hot beverage system. If you are interested in having your office or staff try out one of their brewers visit Tassimo Professional free demo to sign up. Be the office hero and get your staff some free hot beverages! lol

The Tassimo Pro makes coffee-house style beverages with Gevalia espresso and real milk creamer. For those that can't handle caffeine it also makes hot chocolate and tea! Beverages are ready in less than two minutes, and the LCD instructions make prep, cleaning and maintenance simple. I looked on the Tassimo Professional website and the Suchard brand hot chocolate looks divine.

The technology behind the brewer is the T DISCS - unique double-bar brew codes that ensure precise brewing and consistent quality. FYI - the double bar codes on TASSIMO PRO T DISCS help prevent employee stealing because they are not compatible with home machines - in case you were worried about the staff stealing the discs for their home ;-)

I signed up because I'm definitely part of a coffee-drinking staff, and being able to get a hot beverage in the office kitchen vs. "out in the world" as the weather starts to get colder would be very nice. Those who have been keeping up with my ABC's of Fall series know that I LOVE a good hot beverage, and I appreciate any way to make my love more convenient and cost effective.

NEW Tassimo Pro logo.jpg (2 documents, 2 total pages)

Visit Sponsor's Site


Monday, November 28, 2011

The ABCs of Fall: Jackets

Wow. If I don't hurry up and finish this series soon, I'll have to move onto the ABC's of WINTER lol.

Jackets. Part of the staple wardrobe as the temperature starts to drop in that space between summer and winter. I'm a person who's generally cold, so I like the comfort of a nice fall jacket - although I'm not as fond of bulky winter coats.

My current fall jacket looks like this, only it's brown and it has a hood. A simple pea coat. But it is SO warm that I can wear it in the winter with a sweater under and stay pretty warm. I got it from Burlington Coat Factory, which is my go-to jacket/coat purchasing spot. Other than one really good coat I got from L.L.Bean, any coat that I get from somewhere other than Burlington fails me.

I'm pretty satisfied with my current jacket situation, but if I did NEED another jacket I like some of these looks:


What are your fall jacket preferences?
Check out A-I of the ABCs of Fall HERE.


Friday, November 18, 2011

Occupy the Homeless

There has been a lot of talk about how "Occupy" has brought out the "bad elements" in the cities being occupied, namely, the homeless and drug pushers/addicts. The thing is, the Occupy movement didn't CREATE these homeless people, the movement just gave them more access to shelter and food than they had before. What created these homeless people in many instances is what Occupiers are rallying against, a system that is built to keep the rich, rich, and the poor, poor. 

Homelessness is a separate yet related issue. These homeless people have always been homeless. If anything, there should be more work done to protect and shelter the homeless, and services to get them back on their feet,  now that it is more apparent to the mainstream how many homeless people there really are. I know in Philly the homeless had been often relegated to trash diving and sleeping in the darkest of corners in underground tunels of the subway lines. Now they can reside on the surface where there is better food, shelter, and even heat. Who can blame them?

What's unfortunate in this whole thing is the way many media outlets have twisted the homeless's presence into constant bylines about how Occupy protesters are all homeless, jobless, vagrants, which isn't true. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Dissecting Retail Therapy

Wikipedia calls retail therapy: shopping with the primary purpose of improving the buyer's mood or disposition. Often seen in people during periods of depression or transition, it is normally a short-lived habit. Items purchased during periods of retail therapy are sometimes referred to as "comfort buys".

I was thinking deeper about the concept of retail therapy and I think I pinpointed something important. Often times the things that put us in a bad mood are instances where we don't feel valued. We don't feel we as people, our opinions or our wants/needs are valued in some way. Retail therapy is a way of showing OURSELVES that we value OURSELVES. It's a purchase that says, if no one else cares about me, I do. Even if that feeling is fleeting or not really accurate after the smoke clears, it's still the feeling I believe fuels retail therapy.

I love a good retail therapy session, and while I wouldn't advocate for people to go off spending money they don't have, sometimes it's nice to show appreciation to yourself in the midst of feeling unappreciated.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Blogger Spotlight Series

I would like to start a series here where I highlight other bloggers. I hope to showcase some of the blogs I really enjoy as well as be turned on to new blogs to read. Blogging is such a communal activity and that is something I love about it. This is one way I hope to expand my blogging community. If you have a blog you'd like to submit for a Blogger Spotlight feature, or if you would like to submit a blog of a friend, fill out the short form HERE.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Need a break?

Sometimes life can just be busy. Even if every one of your tasks is something you signed on for, or things you enjoy doing, a full schedule is a full schedule and can leave you feeling burned out sometimes. No one should be ashamed to admit when they need a break. That doesn't mean you can't handle hard work, that means you are a SMART worker. You take the time you need in order to get your work done, rather than burning yourself out and being of no use to others or yourself.

Here are some tips on "breaking":

Enjoy mini-breaks - If you don't have the luxury of taking as much time as you want, enjoy the little breaks you do have - your lunch hour, the commute between one obligation and another, even using the bathroom! lol. Make the most of the times when you don't have obligations. Often, instead of enjoying those times we'll spend the whole time thinking about how we wish we had more time, and then the little reprieve you did have is wasted!

Indulge a little - When your schedule is full, and you find you have no time, enjoy little things that you don't always allow yourself to enjoy - a salted caramel mocha instead of your usual plain coffee, a cookie, or make a purchase for something you'll get to enjoy once your schedule clears up more.

Yoga, naps, anything to turn your brain off - When you have a lot to do, your thoughts can become so loud and overwhelming. You're thinking of all you have to do, what needs to be done first, etc. Take some time to enjoy activities that can clear your mind - yoga, or a good old nap. Even 30 minutes to let your mind take a break is beneficial.

What are your tips on handling the need to take a break when you don't have much time?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

My thoughts on Conrad Murray

If you know me, you know I was/am one of the hugest Michael Jackson fans. To me he is unrivaled as one of the best performers of all time. When he died, I was devastated to say the least. Unlike many fans, I didn't feel the need to point the finger at anyone. To me it was a horrible misfortune and a loss to the music industry but it wasn't anyone's "fault."

Many have blamed Dr. Conrad Murray. Dr. Murray gave him a cocktail of drugs, some of which are supposed to be used only in hospitals with vital sign monitoring and life saving equipment, to help him sleep and left him unsupervised. In that unsupervision, the King of Pop died.

Dr. Murray has recently been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. No one, authorities or otherwise, think he intentionally killed Michael Jackson, but there was definitely medical neglect, and he was operating under much lower standards than he most likely would have operated under with a "normal" patient.

But his patient was Michael Jackson. While I don't let Dr. Murray off the hook, I feel like he was in an extraordinary circumstance. His patient was a hugely powerful person, a household name. He wanted to treat and please him because of his stature.

This is the problem with power. You can get to a point where you are so powerful that people can allow you to get what you want, regardless of if it is "good" for you. This is the case in so many celebrity deaths related to drugs. It is so important to have people around you who will not be afraid to make sure you keep your best interest at heart. Michael Jackson had so many people hired to serve him in various ways - I doubt any of them ever told him no either. Where were the people in Michael Jackson's life with the power to tell him no, the power to assist Dr. Murray in trying to ween Michael Jackson off of propofol when he believed it was becoming habit forming? Did anyone exist? His mother? His brothers or sisters? Was it even their responsibility?

I feel sorry for Conrad Murray. I feel sorry because I think he was caught up in a whirlwind that ended in disaster. I can say that he was negligent and I could agree with his medical license being revoked. Is Michael Jackson's death his fault? I don't know. Is an involuntary manslaughter charge the right thing? I don't know.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Why I love "Reed Between the Lines"

It's the only show that makes me dare to turn my television to BET --- "Reed Between the Lines." When I saw the previews I was excited for the show to premiere and I have not been disappointed. Why do I love "Reed Between the Lines"?

Tracee Ellis Ross - I will admit, I wasn't a big "Girlfriends" fan. (*gasp* I know lol). I did like the show, and I watched many of the reruns, but I wasn't awaiting each new episode, I can't even tell you what night it came on. What I do know that made me like the show was Tracee Ellis Ross. I find her to be a nice actress, and funny, and stylish, and of course - I love her hair! She was a great leading lady then, and she continues to carry that title in "Reed."

A relationship like mine - I ADORE the relationship between Tracee Ellis and Malcolm Jamal Warner's characters. It is quite honestly the closest representation of the type of relationship my husband and I have. They are goofy, and loving and just, real. I haven't seen a couple this close to how we are since "My Wife and Kids." I love having the representation of a loving stable Black relationship on television. It balances all the other representations we see too often of non committed and overtly sexual relationships.

Content - The show touches on natural hair, being yourself, honesty, etc. etc. Wholesome topics. Many critics say it's too cookie cutter but I for one am happy to see a family friendly dialogue on television. I am happy to see issues discussed in a universal way.  It doesn't rival the Cosby Show, but I think it does make great strides in presenting a stable family and family values in a time when reality TV has been ruling.

Have you watched "Reed Between the Lines"? What do you think of it?

Monday, October 31, 2011

ABCs of Fall: I is for Ideal Weather & Impending Holidays

Ideal Weather: 

Now, while there was a Nor'easter this weekend, bringing SNOW in October, the weather at the ONSET of fall is ideal lol. Second to spring, I find it the most comfortable weather. Being able to walk around with just a light sweater on, on a solid 70 degree day is awesome. It's so strange how 70 degrees in the fall feels different than 70 degrees in the spring.

Impending Holidays: 

I know I'm not the only one thinks Thanksgiving and Christmas at the first sight of leaves falling. Fall brings us into the "holiday season." Thanksgiving -> Christmas -> My Birthday -> Valentines Day .... do you see how I think ahead? lol

Check out A - H of the ABCs of Fall HERE. Depending on how fast it gets really cold, the series might transition into the ABCs of winter mid-alphabet lol

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Anti-Gender Roles WIN

I was flipping through the recent Sears Toy Shop brochure looking for Christmas present ideas for my niece and was SO happy to see the page below:

What made me so happy you ask? That would be the little BOY pushing a PINK toy vacuum cleaner. It made me so happy. This is a step in the right direction to tackling socially ingrained gender roles. Boys can like pink, boys can clean. 
I for one am SO OVER the notion that women are the cleaners and cookers and child raisers of the family. In a world like we live in now where both the man and woman in a relationship have to work to be financially stable, cooking, cleaning, and child watching needs to be a joint effort. 

I hope there is a little boy somewhere in the world who is excited and asking for a little pink vacuum cleaner. Now I just need to see a little girl playing happily with a toy truck :-)


Thursday, October 20, 2011


I have noticed a large swell in the articles I read from people who are both single and in marriages/relationships who don't believe in monogamy. Usually the premise is that humans are just not meant to only sleep with one person. To me, this sounds crazy lol, but I have to take into consideration that everyone's lives are different and everyone has the right to define their relationship as they see fit. I personally believe that you can be completely happy married to and only sleeping with one person. But that's because that is my reality. Everyone's life isn't my life.

I have no problem with the "non-monogamists" of the world. I do however have a problem with "anti-monogamists," if that makes sense. Those are the people who tear monogamists because they dare to believe they can be happy with just one person. To them I say: don't place your circumstances on others. Just because you have never found a person worth marrying, or worth being monogamous for doesn't mean monogamy/marriage is flawed, it means your relationships have failed at monogamy. 

Are you a monogamist? 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Why do I tweet?

When that random earthquake hit the east coast this summer I was in a staff meeting. The first thing we all did after realizing what happened was take out our smart phone to tweet and facebook the experience. The first thing many people do when something exciting, scary, surprising ,fun, etc. happens, is tweet. Why is that? I don't think this is a trend anyone could foresee back in 2004 before Facebook hit. 

Why do I tweet? I don't know, but I love it lol. Some of the reasons I've come up with are:

I'm random. Twitter exhibits the randomness of my mind as one second I'll be tweeting about how I feel about the Occupy Wallstreet  protests and the next minute I'll be tweeting about my love for plantains. Exhibit A of my randomness:

I love to share things. Twitter is the perfect vehicle for me to share links, pictures, articles, etc. I find online that are either funny or insightful.

It's my social media hub. Twitter is where all my online lives converge. I've got friends from "real life," blogger buddies, the natural hair community, all in one place. Since my facebook is private, my twitter is the space linking my twitter, my blog, my facebook, my tumblr and life all together lol

Do you tweet?



Tuesday, October 18, 2011

YouTube Tuesday: Beyoncé "Countdown" Parody: Student Loan Countdown

It's been a while since I've posted a YouTube Tuesday video, but today I have a nice one. Check out fabulous vlogger Chescaleigh's parody of Beyonce's "Countdown" - "Student Loan Countdown." I thought it was funny, and she has a nice voice. Check out some of her other videos too, she has an awesome personality and charisma.


Sunday, October 16, 2011

ABCs of Fall: H is for Hot Chocolate!

Check out A - G of the ABCs of Fall HERE

With cold weather comes warm beverages, as you know, since A and C of my ABCs of fall have been dedicated to them lol. Another warm beverage that makes the list is Hot Chocolate. Now I love the old school hot chocolate with marshmallows, but as I've gotten older I've run into a few more decadent varieties of hot chocolate:

White Hot Chocolate - it has a different creamy goodness than other types of hot chocolate. Most coffee shops, even Starbucks have a good white hot chocolate. But for store bought make at home, I've found the Hershey's Goodnight Hugs White Hot Chocolate powder to be awesome. I'd definitely like to try my hand at making some homemade white hot chocolate myself, with some white chocolate chips and heavy cream. Of course Mrs. Paula Deen has a recipe.

Mexican Spiced Hot Chocolate - The coffee shop near my job, Cafe Ole, has a really good Mexican Spiced Hot Chocolate. They always say that adding a little bit of spice to chocolate brings out the chocolate flavor more, and that definitely works here. It is one of my favorite fall/winter beverages, and the fact that I can get it with a shot of espresso if I need an extra boost makes it all the better.

I do want to try something I've been hearing people raving about since last winter, Starbucks Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate. I love caramel, and I can only imagine the combination of salted caramel and chocolate.

Whats your favorite type of hot chocolate?


Saturday, October 15, 2011

From Scratch, or From a Box?

I have spent relatively the whole morning baking a cake. It was a recipe my husband found online a few months back, and I figured our two year marriage anniversary would be a good time to make it for him. We're starting a tradition of cake on every anniversary. The first anniversary was our thawed wedding cake, and this anniversary was this chocolate peanut butter cake. Everything was from scratch: cake, icing, and ganache. I boiled, blended, beat, whipped, baked and eventually washed about three sinks worth of dishes. I probably spent three times as much time making the cake as I would have if I baked a box cake. Was it worth it? Well, for this occasion I say definitely yes. But it made me think about making something from scratch, vs. buying pre-made things in store. I thought about the same things the first time I made my own alfredo sauce for pasta, vs. just buying a jar. There are pros and cons of making things from scratch.


You know exactly what you are putting into your body. When you make something from scratch you have complete control over ingredients. You can alter things to your dietary needs, and season/flavor to your liking. More often than not making something from scratch is going to provide healthier food than buying boxed. The cake I made is only a little over 100 calories per slice because of a key substitution...BLACK BEANS instead of oil. Yes, you read right, black beans lol. You can't taste them at all, and the cake is perfectly moist, without the addition of oil.

Pride. There is a greater sense of pride when making something from scratch. Because you take the time and measure out all the ingredients it feels like more of an accomplishment.


Time. Hands down, making something from scratch will always be more time consuming than making something from a box. This is the number con.

Dishes. You will most likely end up using more pots, bowls, blenders, mixers, etc. when cooking from scratch, especially when baking.

Here is my cake side by side with the photo of the cake from the recipe lol. I promise you I am MUCH better at piping icing than this looks, but I was using a ziploc bag with an end cut off, and not an actually piping bag lol

Which do you prefer? Making from scratch or a box?

Friday, October 14, 2011

ABCs of Fall: G is for Ghouls and Goblins

To me, you can't have fall without it's two staple holidays: Halloween and Thanksgiving. And you can't have Halloween without SCARY things. I enjoy being scared. While I'm not one to go on too many roller-coasters that will throw me upside down, I'll take a good haunted house any day.

My schedule has become super busy, but at some point before the Halloween season is over I have to make a return trip to "Terror Behind the Walls" at Eastern State Penitentiary. The first time I went was my freshman year of college, and it easily made it on the top three haunted houses I've ever experienced. One of the rules is no running, but at one point during the tour I recall myself running full speed down a prison corridor. I couldn't help myself lol.

I'm also keeping my ghoul and goblin quotient up with my fall TV line-up. Currently I'm watching American Horror Story on FX, which is so creepy I literally had nightmares from the second episode. I'm also waiting for the return of The Walking Dead on AMC.

Do you like scary movies, tv, haunted houses, etc. during Halloween time? What are you doing to fill your ghoul and goblin quota? 

For A-F of the ABCs of Fall CLICK HERE

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

My life is so hard

Contrary to the title, my life is not at all hard really. When one of us is complaining about some mundane thing, my husband and I will say to each other "your life is hard." What we're really saying is, our life is not really hard at all in comparison to many others. It's our way of poking fun at the dramatics we put on about our not so big problems, like waking up early, or not having any more chocolate in the house. Of course we have problems like anyone else, but at the end of the day, I truly feel blessed.

My grandmother is FINALLY coming home next week, after 6 months between different hospitals and a nursing home.
My husband just got promoted.
I just got cast in a show.
We will be celebrating our 2 year wedding anniversary on the 18th of this month.

Life is good, and I need to remember that when I'm stressing over my cold or our dog making a mess. We are so blessed.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

ABCs of Fall: F is for Foliage

There is something both calming and motivating about the colors the fall brings. The primary inspiration for the fall color palate of course is fall foliage, the leaves, flowers and branches preparing for the winter.

The only downside of course to fall foliage is if the trees happen to be in your yard. In that case, with foliage comes RAKING lol.

Check out letters A-E of the ABCs of Fall series HERE.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Naturally Connected Philly Holiday DIY Hair Accessory Meet & Greet

For tickets in advance GO HERE.

This should be a good time. I'm excited! :-D Tell your friends!


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Big Picture Thinking

"Think about the bigger picture." - Don't you have when people say that? But really, it's true. Thinking about the bigger picture can ease some anxieties and frustrations. This happens in two ways. When you are in the midst of a hard trial or process, thinking about the bigger picture can keep in perspective for you what all your hard work is for and will result in.

There is also the issue of having personal trials, and then thinking about the bigger picture, as in the things other people around you have to deal with. You may have to work late every night for two weeks, and you feel exhausted, but you can be consoled in the fact that you are safe, and happy and have a loving family in your home when you get there, and not everyone has that.

The thought that there is someone else who has things way harder than yourself should motivate you to be grateful, even in times of exhaustion, frustration, etc. It's not a means of belittling problems, but rather, keeping our eye on all the other things in our life that we are happy with and are thankful for.


Saturday, October 8, 2011

Favorite New TV Shows

I was asked on my formspring: "What is your favorite new show on TV these days?"

Well, there are actually a couple new shows that I am into.

The Playboy Club (NBC) :  I wanted to list it, but there is no need to elaborate since it's already been canceled. :-\

Person of Interest (CBS) : I like the premise. There is a computer program that predicts the identity of people connected to violent crimes that will take place in the future. However, the program has its limitations; it cannot predict whether the person will be a victim, perpetrator, or witness, nor can it predict when or where the crime will take place. So the main character John Reese, played by Jim Caviezel, a former CIA agent is "hired" to track down the people, and stop whatever crime from happening. It's a nice spy type show, which I like, mixed with the fact that you don't know what role the "target" plays in the crime going to be committed so it's kind of a mystery. The only thing I DON'T like about the show is Taraji P. Henson. She just doesn't do it for me in her role, which is a police officer trying to track Jim Caviezel's character.

Charlie's Angels (ABC) : We all know Charlie's Angels. I'm very happy with the casting: having a Black Angel, and having a Latino Bosley. Once again I like the spy show premise. The show uses a really solid formula of get a case, go undercover to crack a case, something goes wrong and drama ensues, solve the case. The only thing that really turns me off about it is the excessive brand name dropping and mentions of shoes. It's like, o.k., we get it, you're women, you like clothes and shoes, but must it be so overt? I'm wondering if the name dropping is actually paid advertising lol.

American Horror Story (FX) : I LOVE this. I've only watched the pilot but I already think it's great. The main premise is a family of three who just moved into a new house...which of course is haunted. I can already tell each episode is going to pack an hour of creepy goodness, and I'm all for that. It's pretty much a good horror movie, that you only get an hour of each week.

New Girl (FOX): This show is HILARIOUS. Zooey Deschanel is beautiful and hilarious. I don't even think any of the other characters are that great, but she SHINES.

What new TV shows are you into this season?


Friday, October 7, 2011

Candyman, Candyman, Candyman, Candyman....

I was asked on my formspring "What's your favorite movie to watch on Halloween night?"

That is very easy to answer, since I watched it just this past Halloween....CANDYMAN!

Candyman is my favorite horror movie, hands down. Its my favorite because it is probably the scariest horror movie I've ever seen. I lie to you not, just google searching for pictures for this post made my heart beat speed up.

Legend has it that if you say his name five times in a mirror, he will appear. After seeing this movie the first time, I couldn't be in a room with a mirror in the dark for MONTHS, I was 7 years old, now I'm 25 and the movie still creeps me out.

I am pretty sure that the main reason the movie was scarier to me than the likes of Jason or Freddy Kruegger was/is because Candyman is Black. Not that Black men by nature are scary, but Candyman could have been my next door neighbor. While Jason and Freddy were slashing little kids up in the suburbs, Candyman was a descendant of an abused slave killing people in the hood. That hit a little more close to home for me lol. 

I think this Halloween I'd like to watch Candyman 2 and 3 over, since I haven't watched them as many times as I've watched the original.

What's your favorite Halloween/Scary movie?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

ABCs of Fall: E is for Eagles

Check out A - D HERE!

With fall comes football season, and when you live in Philadelphia football season means the EAGLES. I thought my husband would be in a much better position than me to give an Eagles post, so this is brought to you by him:

When LaNeshe asked me what E stood for in regards to fall, I said what any red-blooded Philadelphian would say: E-A-G-L-E-S, EAGLES!!! However, at 1-3, I should have said Eggs. Rotten Eggs. Actually, maybe not, cause I would still be talking about the Eagles. Man, what a joke these clowns have been in the first quarter of this year. Andy Reid truly has to be on his last legs with them. How much football angst can Philly take? Take Mike Vick for instance. Love him or Hate him, he's a beast. He takes you to the playoffs relativly easy as a backup. This year you sign him to a huge deal. Surely you're gonna protect with the best line you can get right? WRONG. Most of the O line is comprised of rookies and generally untested guys. It's like getting a deluxe paintjob on a 82 Pinto, pointless. Vick has so far sustained a concussion and a broken hand. And it's only week 5. Also, the playcalling. Atrocious. LeSean Mccoy is a great back, can catch, and can rack up yards on the ground. How does Andy follow a 100+ yard game from Mccoy? By running the ball only 29 percent of the time, in a loss of course. They could have won in Atlanta, and they just totally loss focus against San Fran. These are coaching and general manager problems. My advice? Fire Andy. He's had his turn. I want a coach that will return my Fall to me! Till then....E is for Phillies!

Monday, October 3, 2011

ABCs of Fall: C is for Chai, D is for Decorations

If you haven't already, check out A & B HERE.

C is for chai! I love a good chai tea latte. In the summer I'll occasionally get an iced chai, but nothing compares to a nice warm cup of chai with just a little bit of foam on the top. I love the spicy, cinnamonly goodness of a chai, I call it "Christmas in a cup" because the aroma and taste remind me of holiday goodness.

D is for decorations! I love a good opportunity to decorate something. Now that the temperatures have dropped a bit, I have changed the theme on my blog and on my twitter to fit the fall feel in the air. Since this will be our first fall in our new house I'm looking forward to decorating for fall/Halloween!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The ABCs of Fall: B is for Boots!

If you missed it, check out A is for Apple Cider.

When it comes to fall wardrobe, boots are essential! Tall boots, short boots, flat boots,boots with heals. Boots with leggings, boots with tights, boots with dresses, boots with skirts! One thing I've never tried is the boots with tights and shorts look. There is a very small time in the beginning of fall where this can be pulled off before it gets too cold.I'll try it, see how I like it on myself. Here I bring you, gratuitous photos of beautiful boots lol:

What is a staple part of your fall wardrobe?
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