Monday, August 31, 2009
Sunday, August 30, 2009
The company offers underwear trends in great colors and fabrics at affordable prices. A part of the sales get donated to the Women's Alliance, an organization that supports and prepares income challenged women entering the work world through the generous giving of business suits and life skills (interviewing skills, financial skills, professional appearance, etc.) .
Smart and Sexy...
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Friday, August 28, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Butter two 8-inch-diameter cake pans. (I used square ceramic pans)
Drizzle with 1 teaspoon oil.
Cover pans with foil.
Bake until potatoes are almost tender, about 40 minutes.
The other day I posted about my current soap obsession Coconut & Hibiscus Shea Butter Soap w/ Songyi Mushroom by Shea Moisture ( http://www.sheamoisture.com/ ). I am still obsessed and using the soap, which after 4 weeks of use has improved the texture and tone of my skin so that I returned to Duane Reade two weeks ago and purchased the accompanying body lotion (13 oz for S9.99). I just started using it and will need to wait to see if it only enhances the benefits using the soap has brought.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
My father collected swords and for a bit taught my sister and me how to fence. On Sunday’s he would vest, glove and mask us and himself and we would spar. When not in use the foils were mounted on velvet plaques that hung in the foyer of our apartment. I know this sounds strange. Most people don’t expect people who were born and raised in Brooklyn to know such things.
Fencing requires many skills. It is like dancing and when in sync with your opponent a ballet forms. My sister Monique had more patience than I. She parried and riposted and moved me around without breaking a sweat always poking or touching trying to provoke me so that I would lose my head. Had it been a real duel she would have drawn blood. Poking/Drawing blood angers your opponent and in the game of fencing garners points. Anger distracts and makes one react rather than act and more often than not allows you to be taken down.
I was never good at the dance and the poking never made me react, I just absorbed the pokes and kept moving. I didn’t like the dance and always went in for the end result, the kill, which doesn't exist in the sport of fencing with foils. I preferred to use the least moves to win, taking my opponent down at the legs and by doing so ended the ballet way too soon, good on a dueling field with a sabre (saber) and a horse, bad on a fencing court, or in our case a tiled hallway, with foils. I had to learn to play. I had to learn to tease, moving with and against my opponent so to linger and touch and garner points. I had to learn to stay within the accepted confines of the game. To be honest despite learning the skill of such play isn’t something I have ever mastered.
I haven’t fenced in years. Sometimes when in a situation I remember the lessons learned but that doesn’t mean I put the almost forgotten skills to use. I still prefer to go in for the kill by being direct and concise besides sometimes situations call for different lessons, different moves that I am still learning.
Monday, August 24, 2009
The other day during my lunch break I headed to the local drugstore to escape the heat. While wandering up the hair product aisle I came upon a misplaced make up display unit for an unheard of by me brand, Carlo di Roma. FYI, despite the name the make up hails from Barcelona, Spain.
Unmarked and seemingly ignored, the sleek black encased lipsticks, eyeshadows, liners and blushes tempted me to play a bit while I cooled down from the heat outside. One of the products in the line that intrigued me was a felt tipped marker lip liner pen. The color selection was amazing and rather than layer your lip with a waxy pigmented application the pen stains the lip with a matte pigment. Of course I quickly realized rather than just lining my lips I could use the pen to fill them in with color as well, The stain by itself is interesing, a intense matte, but once glossed your lips have a pigmented glow that is, in my opinion, more appealing than a heavy lipsticked lip. The intensity of a colored lip is still there but less jarrring and supports rather than fights a shadowed and lined eye.
I ended up walking away with 3, yes 3!!, INFALIBLE LIP LINER pens at $3.99 (see attached image - Royal Red, Apple Red, Luce) each. After bragging to my sister about my "find" she deflated my bargain ego by telling me that the Dollar Tree also carries some of the products from this line!
Check out Carlo di Roma's site for more items being imported to the states -
None too pretty on the outside, which is lined with barrels of cheap fabrics sometimes for as little as $1 a yard, it is the only one left on the strip. Once you enter the store and take the time to look around it it only then that you realize what you have stumbled upon.
In addition to finding simple cottons and linens and rayons in some amazing prints and colors this place offers mostly upholstrey fabrics at all levels of quality and price. The photo I have attached is a sample of what they carry, but more importantly shows the higher range in pricing, which runs from $1 yard to no more than $16.00. Many of the fabrics run only $3.00 a yard and they even stock cotton sheeting fabric, which is hard to find, at 105 inches wide for about $3-$3.99 yard. So worth the trek downtown!
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Conceived in 1909 and introduced in 1919 this watch is celebrating it's 90th year in demand and now that Michelle Obama has worn one in the official White House photograph, as did Jacquelyn Kennedy in the 1960s, I suspect that I will have lots of options to choose from once all the watch companies pick up on the trend. I know I will buy one of those "inspired" watches and wear it and love it as best as I can even while I dream of the perfect Cartier Tank.
Friday, August 21, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Sorry, I am not buying into this trend. If I want to wear boots under pants I will.
Even if the boots are as neat looking as the above Chloe Tall Foldover Boots eventually with time and wear they are going to look, to me anyway, like the linen Free People Boots below ....(http://www.freepeople.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/products.detail/productID/890057be-45c7-456c-94b2-d7780f913a8d/categoryID/eb344a5e-2eb4-44f2-9bd1-39502a8fe6d1 )
About a week ago I was so inspired by the "mistake proof" 4 simple step application instructions on Maybelline New York's Eye Shadow collections that I ripped the page from the magazine I was reading and taped it up on the bathroom mirror for morning inspiration. Since then I have been following the steps using the eyeshadows I already own - Mid-range color all over lid, deeper color in crease, highlight color on brow bone and the deepest color on outter eye corner and rimming the eyes. Keeping the pattern in mind and changing up the colors has resulted in some interesting but always lovely results! Now I am putting the effort into learning to recognize the full made up face staring back at me ...
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
The reward is a personal thing defined only by the person seeking to not only express him or herself but to be heard and affect the world in which they live. Even when the end result is for the elevation or evolution of the group the act of initiating change is a selfish one, it would have to be in order for it to occur. If we did not place our desire to understand, express or achieve above all else there would be nothing. Desire is personal. Desire drives a person to act. Desire is natural. Desire is selfish and there is nothing wrong with that. It is in selfishness that we seek and it is in selflessness that we let go.
I challenge anyone to review all acts of kindness, revolutions of thought and shifts of power and purpose and consider the fact that if the person(s) behind those changes had not had the original and selfish desire to initiate and promote change through their actions and words nothing would have happened. They could have elected to do nothing, many of us do. The decision to act and all actions up until what was/is created takes a life of its own and can no longer be owned by the initiator are all needed acts of selfishness.
The choice to act upon that desire is personal and we choose to act in order to satisfy ourselves. No one does something they don’t want to do. We make decisions, even when our hands feel forced to do so. We choose to do the things we do. I am not considering what type of satisfaction is sought by our actions because satisfaction is, again, a personal fulfillment of a need. Whether we choose to sit in our martyrdom or revel in our joy are further choices we make and a blog post for another time.
Sadly my reaching started back in July while shopping and having a deep debate with a friend of mine that doesn't buy or wear leather and was complaining about being sucked into to buying outrageously priced "life conscious" options. I laughingly explained to her that there are many stylish and fashion forward people who buy non-animal shoes, belts and bags because of budget not because they want to save some animals skin and suggested that she look about her because there are tons of options outside of her usually shopping scope. I then walked her into Pay-Half and much to my own surprise found these very cute booties for $24.99.
They are made of man-made materials by a company called Qupid. Curious I found the company on the net - http://www.qupidshoes.com/ . Unfortunately they sell only wholesale. I don't know their work ethics or like some of their styles but I do love there mission statement -
"We understand that fashion need not exclude the financially challenged, we are able to meet all the demands of the industry at an affordable price."
Monday, August 17, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
This simple neck tie dress offers more versatility than might be expected. I am already seeing long sleeved crew neck t-shirts beneath it and hand made looking cardigan sweaters atop it in order to bring it with me into the colder months of late fall and early winder.
1-1/2 c flour (50/50 Wheat/White)
3/4 c Sugar
1/2 t salt
2 t baking powder
1/3c vegetable oil
1 large egg
1/2 c milk
1 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 c sugar
1/3 c white flour
1/4 c soften butter
1-1/2 t cinnamon
Preheat over 400F degrees
Prepare muffin tins - line/cooking spray/grease with butter-dust with flour
Combine flour, sugar, salt & baking powder in main bowlIn smaller bowl crack and mix egg, add oil + milkMix liquid into dry mix in main bowl.
Fold in fresh blueberriesFill muffin tin 2/3's wayPlace 1-1/2 t *topping atop each, use back of spoon to spread even.Bake for 20-25 minutes -to test use poke toothpick into center.
It should be dry when pulled back
*to make topping mix sugar, flour and
cinnamon and add in butter, mixing with flour until it is paste like.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
Fabrice passed away in 1998 but this year will feel his influence as graphic and abstract sequined pieces are finding their way back into fashion. I have a love for Haitian sequin art and if tastefully done see nothing wrong with adding a little bit of glitz and glamour to a wardrobe. It will be interesting to see what designers will come up with this time around.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
A few weeks before seeing the post I took this photo of a pile of pallets. They were stacked out in the back of the Brooklyn Lowes near the garbage bins. I love pallets and am always inspired by what I would and could do with them if I had the room.
So if you live in Brooklyn and are inspired by making furniture out of pallets get thee to Lowes with a pick up truck and some muscle!
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Always and forever only happens after we have died. While we are alive there is no such thing. It is the end of our story, not the beginning or the middle.
Having the fantasy of winning and owning something or someone for always and forever helps us reach for or run from, depending on who you are, the actualization of what we desire. Turning the fantasy into reality never concludes in an “always and forever” even when we have achieved our goals. Creating reality is just a further turning in this cycle we call life.
Only in the end, in the synopsis of our life’s achievements when we become known for whom we were, what we did and whom we loved, does always and forever exist.
(ha-ha..A short one this week!)
Monday, August 10, 2009
One of the biggest board games ever played in the streets of New York city is Skully. From 2 to 6 players kneel or lay atop a playing board, usually hand drawn in the middle the street, trying to move their pieces from marked area to marked area in the least amount of flicks.
When I was a kid making our caps, the pieces used in the game, was often more important than actually playing the game. The pieces were a personal statement about the player and many of us made the effort to and took pride in finding the most interesting metal soda or beer caps around. The design of the caps often became our trademark and after being filled with whatever could give them weight and stability were sometimes further personalized with paint and marker. Most of us used melted candle wax, crayons or workman's putty but the hardcore players dug up tar right from the street we played on. For history check out http://www.streetplay.com/skully/com/skully/
Stick Ball -
I remember watching the neighborhood boys play this game in the middle of the street, dodging and crawling under cars to retrieve the handball used for the game long after the corner lamppost turned itself on. The bat was always a "borrowed" mop or broom unlucky enough to be left unsupervised. Before it could be used to hit balls sometimes 2 blocks away the guy who made the best bats would artistically tape up one end to create the hand grip and then lovingly store it after each game. If you're interested in learning more about this street game become sport check out http://www.stickball.com/
What could be more simple? A wall, a rubber ball and your hands was all that was needed to play this urban version of racket ball. Growing up we knew which courts or walls we could play at and unless we had "game" stayed away from the hardcore players whose callused hands could and would sometimes pop the pink spalding balls used in the game with just one return to scare us "kids" off the courts. With over 2000 handball courts all over the city anyone can find a place to play at their level or a game to watch in awe. Check out http://www.icha.org/ for info.
Paddle Ball -
I remember my first paddle. It was called a "Black Beauty". A hand me down from my mother it had metal trim around its edge that proved rather useful when I had to defend myself while walking home from a specific handball court in an area in Brooklyn that I should have never ventured into. But the danger and fear and need for protection were well worth the games I played during my Paddle Ball Era. This game was supposed to have been invented in New York city in 1940 by a handball player who hands could no longer tolerate the cold. In addition to using paddles instead of hands the ball used in the game is smaller and harder than a handball. Check out Handball Organizations in the City for clubs and tournaments.