I Am A Shitholer

What’s in a word?  Plenty.  Especially when it comes from the President of these United States.

When I was young, the word “shit” was out of boundaries.   Shit, along with a few other choice words which I shall not print, was considered a “curse” word.  I think in the South it referred to as “cussing”.

And because the president of the United States uses this word to describe other countries and continents–what kind of message is this giving to children?  That’s it’s okay to use that language at a young age?  No. It isn’t–and that comes from gutter mouth me!

If one of the nuns who taught me had ever caught me so much at mouthing that word silently, I would have been slapped across the face.  Hell, I had been slapped across the face by Sr. Mary Josephita for giving an answer in a tone of voice she did not like.

You don’t mess with the nuns.  Never!

If I had uttered the word “shit” in front of my mother as a child, I would have gotten a slap across the face and a bar of soap in my mouth for dessert.  Hell, she slapped me when I was thirty years old for dropping the “eff” bomb in front of her—at her house.  Apparently, I wasn’t allowed to use that language in her home—at thirty years old.

My mother may have looked sweet–but I didn’t mess around with her!  No foul language in her presence. At any age!

 Not much shocks me.

Seriously–what came out of that imbecile’s mouth yesterday gave me the shock of my life!

But yesterday, when I heard and read that the man who was elected president, with the help of the Russians, referred to the continent of Africa, along with Haiti, as “shithole” countries, I damn near shit my panties.

Let’s take a look at this word—shall we?  Shithole:

The president of the United States likened an entire continent, along with its countries, as well as other countries to this ramshackle house that is in a very horrific state of disrepair and condemnation.

Now—I’m sure many of us have used this word in conversation. I know I have. Here’s an example of when I’ve used this word:

I’ve used the words to my kids when they were younger:  “Hey. Clean up your rooms”.  “Whady’a think this is?”  “A shithole”?

I was referring to an untidy mess filled with objects.  I wasn’t referring to a country or continent of people.

However, for a person in the public eye, and for a (fake) leader of our America to have the audacity to call any other country or continent on this earth a “shithole” is so vile, vulgar, ignorant and disgusting. It literally turns my stomach.

Dr. King, Scott Joplin, Amédé Ardoin, Rosa Parks, Maya Angelou all have roots stemming from Africa—in “Shithole” countries in the “Shithole” continent that the president referred to.

I am a firm believer that had Dr. King lived, he would have been President–and should have.

OMG. This guy!  Scott Joplin.  In my opinion, he is THE best American composer ever!  EVER!

Rosaparks.jpg

And Rosa Parks.  Fierce and empowering. And all had roots going back to Shithole countries!

Ludovic Lamonthe, Garcelle Beauvais, Wyclef Jean, Lee Holdridge—all Haitians.  These talented people all from a country the president of the USA deems a “Shithole” country.

Haitian composer Ludovic Lamonthe.  A man of great talent but shithole roots!

This man is an absolute embarrassment.

Does he not realize that our beautiful America is a melding pot? Our America has welcomed all from various “shithouse” countries.

My grandparents came to the USA to seek a better life than what they had in Ireland.

My Irish Immigrant grandparents.  Thomas and Margaret Wynne.  Lower middle working class–everything that the president of the United States despises.  Did I ever mention that my grandfather used to live in South Africa? He’s shithole squared!

Ireland is a country that has had its fair share of suffering.  Held captive by the British, destroyed by the great famine—and when the Irish came to America they were called “Dirty Irish Catholics” by the Anglo-Americans. They were called apes and drunks.  And mics.

This was the truth…

The American Protective Association was a nativist organization established to promote bigotry against Irish Catholic immigrants. Its member would not hire Irish immigrants or vote for Irish-American candidates for office. The No Irish Need Apply signs were prominently displayed in many businesses in American cities. Laws restricting the poor from coming to America in the 1880s to prevent Irish immigration.

Sound familiar?  Some things never change.  The Catholics are still hated by the extreme right faux-Christians.

And another thing.  My grandmother, the shitholer immigrant, worked her ass off.  When my grandfather took ill from a serious injury in World War 1 and lost a lung, my grandmother worked nights for decades cleaning office buildings in Manhattan.  She lived to be 98 years young and I can’t think of any woman that I admire more.  She was a rock and a great, great woman! I’m proud to be a shitholer granddaughter!

I am a mic.  And I am sure that had the president of these United States been around when the Irish immigrated he would have referred to Ireland and her struggles as a “Shithole”

My husband, a Frenchman, is an immigrant.  The Americans liberated France during the second World War.  I’m pretty sure that the president of these United States would refer to France as a “Shithole”—especially since the American troops saved the French from Hitler.  Remember—The President of the United States is a Draft-Dodging Coward—so even if he had been of age to fight in the second World War, he would have gotten daddy to pay his way out.

Dany and Evie Lartigue.  As Dany told me before he died, the War destroyed his family. If it had been up to the present president, he would have let the Nazi’s take over!

My husband is a frog. And I can pretty-much bet that the president of these united states refers to the French in a discriminatory way.

My Frog Prince!  I’m honored to be the wife of an immigrant!

My ex-in laws, whose roots and family are from Warsaw—well, I’m sure the president would have referred to them as “Dumb Polacks” from the “Shithole” country of Poland. And these were some of the hardest working, blue-collar people I’ve ever known.

Alphonse and Helen Urbanski.  Alphie represented the USA in WW II. He was stationed in Bora Bora. You can bet your bottom dollar that Donnie the Draft Dodger would NEVER put a military uniform on–only for military school. What a coward.  The girl in the top right was dancing for the troops. 

He showed his true colors and bigoted personality a long time ago. It’s just that yesterday, we received validation of what a truly hateful man he is.

He is anti-American.  He goes against the grain of everything my beloved America stands for.  The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.

Lady Liberty stands tall because she will always represent what America has always stood for.

Immigrants from “Shithole” countries have built our great country and made her what she was and is—despite the one in the white house and his cronies.

I am an American.  And today, I feel that I will have to try harder and harder to stress to my foreign friends and family—and those who don’t know me, to let them know, we are all not like the  leader that is in the White House. Nor are the majority of us like his supporters.

The majority of Americans are kind. And helpful. And hard-working. And decent. And good.

And we are also a country of “Shitholers” because our roots come from countries that have been referred to as “shithole” countries at one time or another–even the present.

This morning as I got dressed, I took a good look at what I was wearing. In my loafers, and plaid shirt, and my denim jeans, and my straight hair, I just looked so “All American.”

My All-American Look—or is it?

Then I noticed something—my hair was made in Indonesia.  My jeans in Mexico. My shirt in China.  My loafers in El Salvador. And my nails were applied by a technician from Vietnam.

All what would be referred to as “Shithole” countries.  And so, I thank the “Shithole” countries for giving me that All-American look today.  I couldn’t have done it without you! Thank you for giving me the hair I never had.  Thank you for dressing me up in clothing that I love.  Thank you for making me feel and look great!

I am an American. I am the blood of  working class immigrants. I am a shitholer.

I am an American. I am the product of Irish Immigrants. I am a Shitholer. Are You?

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The (S)Tory of the Boots From Hell

We all have that one item in our wardrobe.  The item from Hell.  It’s akin to the lemon of a car that you may have had years ago before the lemon law went into effect.

It’s true. Cars aren’t the only lemons.  We all have that one item of clothing that is the bane of our existence.

It could be an expensive coat that, for some reason is always ripping in a certain spot at the seam or has buttons that continually fall off. It could be a pair of pants that you love but for some reason, the hem keeps getting undone.

You get the picture—right?

Well, for me, it’s a certain pair of boots. A pair of Tory Burch boots.  And if I hadn’t spent a good amount of money on them, I would have tossed them in the trash a long time ago.

These are the boots.  And they have been nothing short of a headache since I purchased them back in 2012!  But they’re just so beautiful!

But—I spent a lot of money on these horrific excuse of designer boots.  And they are, hands down, the worst pair of garbage that I ever overspent on—even when I made the purchase at Nordstrom Anniversary Sale six years ago.

 

I’m not kidding. These boots are like that old boyfriend  you know is so bad but you just can’t get rid of….

Let me explain.  I wanted a nice rich Cognac brown pair of riding boots that would lend itself well to my beloved Kooba Sloane Bag.  Now mind you, I absolutely love my Kooba Sloane.  I’ve had her for about eleven years—possibly twelve.  This bag is not only pleasing to the eye, but it is well-constructed, strong as all get-out and fits a good amount of my “stuff”.    I had seen this bag but it was just way out of my affordability radar at the time.  Retailing for $645, and me, being a divorced mother with one child away in college and two children home at school, it was out of reach.

However, I got lucky.  The bag ended up on sale at Neiman Marcus and I had a gift card.  I ended up paying $200 for it—a treat for my birthday.  This is the bag that survived a child throwing up all over it on a flight back from France.  She’s survived storms and house moves.  Kooba was over my shoulder as I went through menopause and my divorce.  She was also with me for my first Colonoscopy—of which the doctor said “Nice bag—my wife was eyeing that”.

And the more she ages, the better the leather looks.  And  years later, the bag still receives compliments.

She’s been puked on, thrown around in cars, gone through so much with me, yet, she gets better with age. My Kooba Sloane has been aging gracefully!

Anyway, I wanted a pair of boots that would best match the color of my Sloane bag simply because I have a “thing” for matching my footwear to my bags. And after  years of searching in vain, that special pair of boots was found during a Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2012.

What other boots?  My crossed eyes only saw the Nadine boots from Tory Burch.  They were so stunning and the perfect color!

The Tory Burch “Nadine” boots, which, I believe were inclusive to Nordies.  (Read this review from the blog To Brighten My Day )

It was a perfect time to make the purchase.  I had a job at a healthcare company and was making a decent salary.  The retail price was $495 USD and with the deep discount of the infamous Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, I purchased the boots for $300.  Mind you, I had never made such an expensive boot purchase before in my life and since then, never have.

My circle of boot friends!  And none of the boots were as expensive as the Tory Burch Nadine boots.  And none ever needed as much repair!

I’ll spend more on my leather Longchamp bags but not boots.  And so, this was a big deal for me.

The boots were a bit snug with heavier jeans, but since the majority of my jeans are skinny ones, it was no big deal.  The foot of the boot looked really clumsy too.  The way it was constructed just made my foot look three sizes larger, and at an 8 ½, I don’t want bigger feet. But it didn’t matter.  The color was perfect and I liked the hardware.

And so, the saga of the Boots from Hell began.

During the fall into winter of 2012, I finally got to wear the boots.  Since purchasing the boots in August, I hadn’t been able to wear them due to the warm weather.  The first time I wore these really pricey boots, they were the most uncomfortable footwear, next to the Tory Burch Reva flats, I had ever put  my narrow feet into.  Now—I was able to accept the uncomfortable factor simply because after breaking my Reva flats in, they were extremely comfortable. I figured it would be the same thing for the boots.

I should have earned my lesson after breaking in Tory Burch Reva flats. It took forever to break these shoes in–but years later, they are comfortable.  Might I mention the tunic in this photo? It’s also Tory Burch and the stitching on the bottom is already becoming undone.  Never again, Tory. Never again!

Wrong.

My narrow foot was swimming within the  width of the boot.  To drive my car, I had to take the right boot off—it was like having my foot and leg in a thick cardboard box.  But the boots were the perfect color.  Walking in the boots was just as bad.  Being clumsy by nature, walking in these was turning my clumsiness into a fine art.

After two wears, I placed these boots back into the box and didn’t take them out until 2014. I just could not bring myself to return them.

Now it’s 2014. I gained a bit of weight.  Like—everywhere.  But—the cooler weather was great for wearing boots.  The boots wouldn’t zip up.  Even with skinny jeans.  I had no idea that with a weight gain, the boots wouldn’t fit.  But they were the perfect color—and that hardware.  Since I paid $300 for the boots, there was no way I was going to try to zip these beauties up and risk breaking the zipper.

Image result for atypical 60 boots

Honest to God, with the weight gain, this was as far that I could zip the boots up. And I didn’t even try because I didn’t want to ruin the boots. Into the closet they went. Unworn for almost two years.

Now it’s 2016. Fall.  I lost weight and was continuing to lose weight. On a whim, I took out the boots.  They fit again.  They zipped up beautifully while wearing skinny jeans and even more beautifully with Pixie Pants and dresses.  With my Kooba Sloane bag eagerly anticipating her booty buddies, I made them a perfect match.  Then I forgot that these boots were a bitch to break in.

At this point, I didn’t care how long it would take to break these in.  Finally, in late winter, the leather in these incredibly stiff leather boots wore in, and the boots were more comfortable. The foot part still looked ridiculously big but it didn’t matter. The color was perfect.

Late winter, the boots are finally broken in and are looking good with my Longchamp bag while Sloane takes a break in bag rotation.

Winter left, Spring came around and as I was getting ready to zip up my boots, I noticed that the zipper pull had a crack in it.  And when I pulled up the zipper, the pull broke.  WTF?  How cheaply made was the hardware on these boots?  You need to understand, I take very good care of my shoes and my boots.  I’ve had shoes for over ten years that still look like new.  I’m very particular.

 

I couldn’t believe it.  How could a piece of hardware break when the boots have been in the closet longer than on my feet?

The zipper pull also had the “Tory Burch” logo cut into it.  I took the boots to the Tory Burch boutique at the King of Prussia Mall.  I thought that perhaps since the pull was a TB logo perhaps they could repair the boot gratis. This was such a difficult thing for me to do because I was emotionally scarred from a previous trip to the Tory Burch Boutique at KOP Mall.  (Read my review of this horrific store:  My Review of Tory Burch store on Google). True to Tory Burch Corporate Culture, I was treated as though I was a dried up, bloodied human sized scab that was now oozing pus.  When I finally approached Miss Mainline Sales Assistant and explained my conundrum.  She ever-so-smugly smirked and said. “We don’t do repairs”.

How I looked going into the Tory Burch Boutique

How the snotty Tory Burch sales assistant saw me.

Off to Nordstrom I went.  Luckily, Nordstrom was able to send the boots out to be repaired. I was told that it would take some time for the boot to be repaired. But at this point my reaction was “Fine.”

Did I mention that it took three months to get the boots back?  Thankfully, I had them repaired during the summer months.

Fall 2017.  The boots are repaired, the zipper is beautiful and the match is perfect.  It was well-worth the $15 I had to pay for the repair, but the aggravation was priceless. The color of the boots has also darkened somewhat over the years, making them an even better match for my Kooba Sloane.

Happily in my Tory Burch boots again–and my Kooba Sloane is thrilled!

I’ve been happy wearing these boots.  Yes. The foot part still looks too big but I no longer have to take the boots off when I drive and they are broken in to perfection with the exception of the clumsy looking foot.

And then it happened.  Two weeks ago.  I went to zip up the left boot and it wouldn’t budge after being zipped up halfway.  Now—I know I put on holiday weight, but not enough that these friggin’ boots would no longer fit. Besides—the leather stretched a bit over the years.  I tugged again. Nothing.

I took the boot off and noticed it.  You know the fabric part of the zipper?  Where it meets the actually zipper?  It was torn.  Big time.

At this point, I wanted to throw the boots in the trash.  But I couldn’t bring myself to do it.  I had a moral dilemma here.  Thousands of customers take advantage of the Nordstrom return policy.  Why couldn’t I?  Regardless of my past gig selling handbags, I was still a customer.  Regardless of the fact the boots were purchased in 2012 and I had worn them on and off.  Regardless of the fact they were sent out by Nordstrom to get repaired.  My dilemma was—do I return, or send back out for repair.

What will happen?  Will I return the boots only to be denied?  Will I be able to have these boots from Hell repaired–or will the repair request be denied?

And off I went to Nordstrom. I’ll tell you, I felt bad. I’m not a returner. But what happened was very interesting.  The shoe department at Nordstrom is always fully-staffed. It wasn’t when I took the boots in.  Sitting in a chair was a salesman (I’m being sexist), he looked bored so I decided to brighten up his day.  I explained that I used to work at Nordies and that I wasn’t a serial returner because I couldn’t stand serial returners and then I explained about the boots.  Let me tell you something right now.  Nordstrom prides itself on great customer service.  This guy was a real tool.  Apparently, the only person who could have helped me was the manager who was on an hour break.  I was offered no assistance and no help, which was pissing me off because I know Nordstrom’s stellar customer policies very well. Yes!  This less-than-stellar service was now at Nordstrom!

With a sigh I went over to the handbag department.  The assistant manager, Jamie, that I used to work for is now the manager. And I love her. So together we set out to find the original sales transaction.  But the problem was that we couldn’t find it.  Nordstrom overhauled their credit cards  and policies last year and everyone was given a new number. Add to that, I don’t think I used a Nordstrom card. I think I used my bank debit card.  No problem, after some laughs and good conversation, not only did I realize that I missed Jamie, but I decided to just get the damned boots repaired.  Again.

Back to the boot department.   I was directed to the designer area because Tory Burch’s cheaply made boots are “designer”.   Why couldn’t “tool man” tell me that in the first place? This time around I got lucky. Jasmine, the designer sales assistant was a doll.  She took down all the needed information about the boots, assured me that there was a chance that the boots could not be repaired because Nordstrom changed their repair policy but they would be sent out for assessment.  She gave me my receipt and I was miserably on my way.

In addition, when I handed the boots over, I noticed a little hardware screw was missing from the back of the boot.  When I pointed it out, I was told that couldn’t be replaced.

If Nordstrom cannot repair the Boots from Hell, I will bring them to a local shoe repair to see if they can do the job.  If Nordstrom can repair the boots, I’m sure the cost will be about $50 to $60 as the entire zipper will have to be repaired.  This will bring the price of the $300 plus $15 for the zipper pull repair up to almost $400.  Some big sale item.

Lesson learned?  Don’t buy Tory Burch boots. Not now. Not ever. Never.  And stick to the less expensive brands.  Today I’m wearing a pair of boots that I also purchased at Nordstrom. The boots are the Ellerby Riding Boots from Enzo Angiolini and I paid around a hundred bucks for them back in 2014.  They are comfortable.  They have never needed a repair. They are beautifully constructed. And the brown trim on the top makes for a great match to my Kooba Sloane Bag.

These Ellerby boots from Enzo Angiolini are some of the best boots I own.  They are Bonaparte’s favorites!  Always looking sharp, I can wear them with my Kooba Sloane or any black bag.  And they were far less expensive that the Tory Burch boots!

What about you?  Do you have that item from Hell in your possession?  Do you have that overpriced item that you can’t part with or realize was a mistake from the get-go?  Tell me. Please! I gotta know! We all need to know!!!

It’s a shame that one pair of boots could cause such stress—and I’m singing “Shame, Shame Shame” today. Remember this from Shirley and Company?

 

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You Highlighter Up My Life! Highlighting the Mature Face

I have to say, I felt as though I was channeling my inner Mrs. Kravitz this morning!

I need to get out of the house more often because I am turning into Mrs. Kravitz–the iconic nosy neighbor!

Chippy ran to the front window barking like crazy and then I spotted lights.  Lights from a police car and lights from a fire engine. They were parked in front of the empty townhouse across the street.

Not a scene that is familiar to my eyes–so you can just imagine what was going on in that imaginative mind of mine!

Naturally, my stress and anxiety levels were getting the better of me as I opened up the slots from the upstairs blinds to keep watch of what was going on.  But it was too much for me, I had to go outside to find out what the commotion was about.

My curiosity was piqued!

So out to the tundra, without a coat and slipping and sliding on the ice only to yell in my Long Island accent to the police “Hey!!!  What’s goin’ on?”  “Is there a murderer or robber somewhere around here?”.  My voice carries so three cops came running over to me to quickly explain that the alarm went off due to a water pipe that had burst.  They assured me that everything was okay and that the owner was on his way.

Hey–I never said I was discreet.  Luckily it wasn’t a murderer nor was it a robber. It was a busted water pipe.  Beware the winter!

And all day the empty townhouse has been full of activity with plumbers and the owner and God-only-knows who else.

You would think that excitement would be the highlight of my day.  It wasn’t.

Instead, I was asking myself “Which highlighter will I use today?”

I know.  I know.  I’m sure many of you are wondering just why a woman with a wrinkled, soon-to-be-63-years-old face would make an attempt to highlight and draw attention to any area of an aging visage.  Hold on.  Highlighters aren’t our enemy!

They can actually give us a luminous glow if used properly.

Let’s discuss.  Pictured below are five highlighters that I use. Each serves a particular purpose.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From top left clockwise.  Wet n’ Wild Megaglo Illuminating Palette; Fenty Beauty Trophy Wife; NARS Albatross, NYX Bright Idea Illuminating Stick; Revolution Vivid Baked Highlighter.

And here’s what they look like opened.

Now–although I’m not a fan of powders because they tend to make my skin look drier than it is,  the powdered highlighters aren’t ashy nor do they have a drying effect.  I’m pretty sure that is because they are applied with an extremely light touch!

I use this fan brush by Morphe. It is $5.00 on their website and I got it in a brush set.  It’s an okay brush–not the greatest and not the worst!

On my arm.  Bottom to Top.  Wet ‘n Wild Megaglo; Fenty Beauty Trophy Wife; NARS Albatross; NYX Bright Idea Illuminating Stick; Revolution’s Highlighter

As you can see, the differences are obvious in the colors and the illumination with NYX and Revolution’s highlighters coming in very similar.

Wet ‘n Wild’s Megaglo.  As a highlighter, the color came across on my arm dark.  When applied with a brush,  the product gives a lighter glow.  Personally, I like using this during the summer as a shimmery under-the-brow bone shadow.  It doesn’t show up that much on the cheeks but still, it isn’t bad.  At $4.99 it is a very good value if you want a very subtle highlight.

Blended all together or swiped with a brush separately to be used as  eye shadow, this product does come off best as a shadow.  However, if you are looking for the most subtle hint of color on the cheekbones, this is still a great value.

Fenty Beauty Trophy Wife:  Beware. This is not for the faint of heart.  I love Trophy Wife and on evenings out with Bonaparte, I’ll also apply to my eyes as a shadow. The golden color is beautiful.  But–I think it is more beautiful on darker complexions and when you have a tan.  A little bit of this goes a long, long, long, way–use sparingly! Retailing at $34, it may seem pricey but when you take into consideration how long it will last–it’s very affordable!

If you want a super golden glow, then Trophy Wife is your product. 

Look up high on my cheekbone and you’ll see the golden glow from Trophy Wife. I’m sorry that the lighting sucked and I was unable to get better pics.

I also have an extremely light application of Trophy Wife on my nose and Cupid’s bow.

NARS Albatross:  This has been around for quite some time.  Although white in color, when applied correctly, it gives a gentle shimmer. At $30, the cost is less than Trophy Wife but this works well with fair skin tones.  I like this a lot and use it more in the winter than the summer.

The shelf life says 24 months and I’m coming up on that time, but this is still in great shape and there’s plenty left.

Ugh. I wish I was successful enough as a blogger that I had a photographer. But I’m not so you’ll have to bear with me–lol!!  I’m wearing Albatross in this photo. It is illuminating but I think from the angle and with the lighting it looks really bright.  But–the great thing is it doesn’t dry out my already dry skin. It really does give a nice sheen!

NYX Bright Idea Illuminating Stick in Lavender Lust.  A creamy and absolutely beautiful illuminating highlighter, this is, hands down, my absolute favorite!  At $8.00 this is the best value and the product doesn’t fail. I wear this almost every day.  This stays put, it blends in beautifully with blush and really gives the most natural glow to the face!  I love this!!

The stick looks more pink in this photo but really is a true lavender IRL.  I can’t say enough about this because it is my favorite. I’m a big fan of creams and this doesn’t fail!

I had to play around with the angles but from straight on, you can’t even tell that I have this highlighter on my nose–it shows up when I bend my head down. It doesn’t look lavender either. You can also see a bit of this creamy sheen on my cheekbone!

Here it is on my cheek. So subtle and glowy and pretty.  A great deal for eight bucks!

Revolution Vivid Baked Highlighter.  Retailing at $6.00, I think I paid three dollars on clearance.  This comes in second to the NYX for me.  The color goes on very similar to the NYX, but I do prefer the cream–it’s more blendable.  But still, this isn’t a bad highlighter and the pale color is very all-tone friendly.

Revolution’s Vivid Highlighter.  It’s not bad at all.  I’m wondering how this will work out during the summer months with a tan. When the humidity is high and the face sweats, sometimes the powders are a better choice!

 

Revolution’s Vivid Highlighter. So subtle you can’t even tell I’m wearing it.  But the difference between this and the NYX is that I prefer the cream.

I honestly can’t recall ever using highlighter with the exception of Revlon’s Face Gleamer–I remember having this in high school and using it as a blush. And I also remember that I loved it.  Why did Revlon ever discontinue it?

Image result for revlon's face gleamer

It’s Lauren Hutton!!!!!!!  Revlon needs to reissue this Face Gleamer!

As we age, it’s fun to be opened to products that can give us that glow we used to have.  Not a moon glow, and not that “special” glow we get after too much wine.  Just a subtle natural glow and highlighting gives that back to us.  We just need to know how to apply it to best suit our needs!

Here’s a great video from Wayne Goss–if you haven’t watched his videos yet, start now.  He’s addictive. I love this guy!

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Atypical60 Looks at the Golden Globe Awards and Why Oprah Should Run for President

Where do I begin with this one?  First of all, if you’ve read my past posts on Hollywood awards events, you know that, a. I’m not a “celebrity” person and b. I live to watch these awards to drool over great ensembles and to snark over the tacky ones.  Actually, it’s the tacky and tasteless that warm my heartless the most.

I would have been better off in France at the Cannes Film Fesitval. What is this dress made of?  Honeycomb cereal? Popcorn? 3-D Tic-Tac-Toe boards?  Only Larisa Katz, the designer knows.  But this is what I live for–the truly tacky ensembles and last night’s Golden Globe awards were such a disappointment!

Today I’m nursing a serious case of deep GERD-related indigestion due to the over-the-top amount of chili and cheese laden nachos that I gluttonously wolfed down during last night’s presentation.  I think it was more of a stress-eat than anything else.

The Golden Globes are now officially to blame for my overeating last night and destroying my diet. 

I was stressed because there was no tackiness.  No flamboyance.  No excitement.  Wait!  I have a caveat here—Oprah’s speech was the only excitement but I’ll get to that later.

And where was Bjork?  I’ll bet she would have worn a black swan dress—even THAT would have been more exciting!

I knew I was in deep trouble when I started watching “Countdown to the Golden Globes” on the E! Channel.  Always late with “celebrity news”, I had no inkling that all the very serious and “humble” actors would be wearing black in support of the #metoo movement.

At first, I thought “Who died” because everyone looked like they were going to a fancy funeral for a very important fashion designer.

Then when I saw the little clip of Debra Messing calling out E! for not paying one of their female entertainment reporters the same salary as her male counterpart, I knew at that moment the self-righteousness of the entertainment industry and not entertainment as an escape would be the topic of the evening.

Trust me, I’m all for equality–but the subject has it’s time and place. Debra. Don’t bite the hand that’s giving you exposure to enjoy the salary you already make–and might I remind you that salary puts you above the 0ne percent that the entire country is making.

Now—don’t get me wrong.  I’m all for equality in pay.  Based on education and skills and knowledge, the pay scale should be adjusted.  But the question remains—was the female reporter in question as adept and qualified as the male she was working with.  And this subject goes deeper and deeper because these days, corporations are trying to get away with paying all employees less in salary while demanding more of their time.

Besides—there is a time and a place for everything and Messing’s timing was way off on those comments. It was tacky—and it wasn’t the tacky I was so looking forward to.

You know who Messing should have called out?  Her makeup artist.  Her shadow wasn’t even blended correctly!! Now THAT’S a crime!!!!

Honestly, I should have turned the TV off when the most gorgeous Catherine Zeta-Jones was being interviewed.  Bonaparte and I were enjoying our aperitifs and at the same time turned to each other with “How much more full of herself can this woman be before she vomits from her own self-fullness?”

Catherine. You are now part of the “mature woman” demographic. You need those Golden Globes of yours placed in a bra with a bit of lift.  The truth may hurt your over-filled ego but your cups need a little filling!

My Frenchman went upstairs after dinner and I was left to watch the Golden Globes tout seul.

My Frenchman left me to watch the Golden Globes alone!  That’s almost as scary as watching “It” or “The Shining” by myself!

So, let me give you my opinion on the Golden Globes 2018.

Seth Meyers.  You are a nice guy. You have a nice way.  You were one of my favorites on SNL Weekend Update.  However, your hosting was boring.  Hey. I understand. It was through no fault of yours.  You were most likely a “safe” host and you were.  I want Ricky Gervais back.

Seth–even that joke about Weinstein was too tame for my taste. I want Gervais back and I want him back funnier and more acerbic than ever!!!!!

For chrissakes, these celebrities take themselves almost as seriously as that one in the White House calls himself a genius.  Lighten up.  Get a sense of humor.  Laugh at yourself.  Gervais would have done a far better job and had gotten plenty of laughs.  But nooooooooooooooooo . The tone had to be maudlin so we could how serious the evening was.  The black attire wasn’t enough.

And speaking of black attire, let’s look at some of the dresses.

Kate Hudson.  I have news for you Kate, the netting on my Weave-A-Wig would have made a better dress.  Couldn’t your stylist have gotten you something more attractive? On the other hand, you do look cute with short hair.

Kate Hudson’s Weave-a-Wig dress…

The netting on the Weave-a-Wig helps to keep the wig secured when sewn in.  This would have come in very handy for the security of Hudson’s dress had the top been made with Weave-a-Wig netting.  Bobbi Boss may have a side business in awards dressing!

Halle Berry.  I’m giving props to Halle as one of the GG’s Best-dressed.  She wore a short dress and I am a sucker for shorter dresses.   I also like “long-haired Halle” better.  She has killer legs and that dress showed those gams off to perfection.  My only criticism is that she should have worn pointy-toed, cleavage, bearing heels instead.

Halle Berry gets my nod for one of the evening’s best dressed.  I don’t think she’ll fail the pencil test for a bra the way Zeta-Jones will.  I’m putting this photo on the fridge to stop me from eating.  But WTF is with all the see-through dresses?

My other criticism. What’s with the see-through dresses?  Seriously.  I can’t stand see-through clothing—it has nothing to do with modesty either. Hell, I go topless on the beaches in France so to some I’m most likely the most immodest woman on earth.  But the see-through dresses are just not attractive. On anyone.

Dakota Johnson.  Hands down.  The best dressed of the night.  I can’t even with the back of that gown.  And the cut and style—everything about her look was just so beautiful. And in a sea of boredom, she stood out even more beautifully than ever!

This dress literally took my breath away.  Seriously, she should have saved this for the Oscars because this is an Oscar-worthy dress.  OMG. I am in love with this.   Kate Hudson needs to hire Dakota Johnson’s stylist. So does Zeta-Jones!

Angelina Jolie.  Angie. Angie. Angie.  Do I have to fly to Brignoles, France and knock on your door to tell you how disappointed I was in your Globes attire?  Come on. You are the most beautiful woman on earth and you wore a get up that was far too matronly.  Dayum. I’m almost 63 years old and I wouldn’t wear that granny outfit.  Bring back that infamous dress with the high slit you wore to the Oscars a few years back!

Whoever this Just Jared is, I want to thank him for taking the greatest GG pics!  Angie.  Why?  Why are you dressing in a dress that Totie Fields or Phyllis Diller would have worn.  This is not you.  Go back to the slits. Please.

Emma Watson.  No. Just. No. If you are aspiring to look Amish, come to my house and I’ll drive you to Lancaster County, PA. It’s just a half-hour away from me.

Emma, you played Belle.  Why wear a dress that is a cross between an Amish ball gown and one that looks like those weird ears on a lizard–the sleeves.  No. Just. No!

Mandy Moore.  Thank you so much for adding a splash of color by wearing a red sash.  But you should have worn your hair down.

I love that splash of red over the drab black gown.  There’s too much material on the bottom of this one.

What?  Are you trying to look like the lady in the American Gothic painting?  The hair is too severe for your bone structure.  A looser pulled back look would have been stunning!

And Mandy. Don’t ever wear your hair pulled back like that again. It’s too severe for your beautiful face.  You need a loose look to soften the angles. I know this.  I have a very square face.

Frances McDormand.  BINGO!!  My second-favorite look of the evening!  She wore Navy Blue!  Frances McDormand is not only the best actress (Yes. I’m being sexist by calling her out as an actress because I’m separating the sexes.  She is better than any male actor.), but she’s a rebel by wearing blue in that black sea of fashion  boredom. McDormand is the reason I watched the Golden Globes. I was dying to see her win because she was so great in Three Billboards. And she did win.

First of all, I was thrilled she won because her performance in Three Billboards was stellar.  Secondly, just the fact she wore navy proved she has more balls than all those combined of the men in the audience!  Add to that, there is nothing phony or pretentious about this woman.  She is comfortable with no makeup. Oh I love her.  I’m even giving her a pass on the Eileen Fisher “style” of the dress. She’s still my second-best dressed of the evening.  Go you, Frances–and you better win that Oscar!

How could anyone not love her? She offered to buy Tequila shots for all her fellow women nominees.  Damn. I wish I was there! I wish I was nominated for a Golden Globe! Her speech, although who knows why she was bleeped so many times, was the best.  The woman exhibited a sense of humor that was surely lost during the rest of the event!

And speaking of those black dresses.  Do people not realize that RED is a more empowering color?  Hell yes!  If I were there I would have worn my red heels. Red is a more “in your face” color.  Black fades in with the background.  Isn’t it better to wear a more empowering color and one for hope rather than a color associated with the maudlin and death?

If I were at the Golden Globes, MY symbolic dress would have been red high heels because I could stamp out the abuse and discrimination. I would have worn jeans as an homage to all the normal, middle and lower, working class women who can’t afford designer duds!  THAT symbolism would have been more believable. Red. It is an empowering color!

Think about it.

Let me tell you something.  I’m a #metoo. As are most women. And we’ve all had our share of abuse, hardship, bullying and discrimination from men.  But nobody brings up the white elephant in the room about the abuse coming from other women.  Have any of you ever worked with a female boss or supervisor who was totally abusive?  I’ll bet you did because I know that I wasn’t the only one.

Boss GIF

Yes. I’ve been the smart fat girl, and have also suffered my share of abuse and discrimination from a woman superior.  So let’s talk equality–OK???

Have you ever seen the shaming that women exhibit towards other women on social media?  Men aren’t the only abusers or purveyors of harassment.  And it’s one thing to give a fun and tongue-in-cheek assessment of what women are wearing on the awards shows.  But to viciously attack someone for going against the wearing o’ the black is another. And Twitter was rife with McDormand Shaming! Not cool. Not cool at all.

There is, however, hope for all of us.  And that hope comes in the form of Oprah Winfrey.  Although Reese Witherspoon’s introduction had me eye-rolling because I just wanted her to shut up and hand the award and mike over to Oprah, as soon as Winfrey took to the podium.  I knew it would be one of the best moments of the evening.

This.  This. Hope + Oprah. Hoprah.  The artist who created this is a genius!

And it was.  For her to win the Cecil B. DeMille award was a shining moment and my girl Oprah had me at “Linoleum”.  Here’s the link Oprah’s Acceptance Speech.

Oprah needs to run for President of These United States in 2020.  And here’s just a few reasons why.

Oprah.  Our next President?  Let’s hoprah so!  Note to Bobbi Boss wigs–can you create a wig just like Oprah’s hair style?  I want this. 

The world loves and adores her.  She would be an exemplary example of a great leader in foreign policy.

She has a book club!  She would make America read again!

Oprah. Are you reading this?  Can I send my book to you when completed?  You’ll make America READ again–and we need that!

We can all, as an overweight nation relate. She’s knows the weight loss struggle is real.

Image result for oprah wagon of fat

Oprah. I remember the day you did this. I watched your show religiously.  I struggle too. we all struggle with our weight!!

She can give a bad-ass speech better than anyone!

She is a great actor—and that counts when one must remain calm.  She will be able to channel her inner calm acting skills when her nerves are put to the test.

Ohhhhhhhhhhhh.she’s good.  Just like her soup.

Ohhhh..That’s Good.  Soup!  Soup! Is there nothing this woman can’t do? 

She is intelligent and smart. And she made the rise from journalist to—OPRAH!!!!!!

She is a humanist.

She can get the entire country out to vote—and vote for her.  OMG—the Republicans and their electoral collage wouldn’t stand a chance!!!!

Maybe she will give all of us new cars!

She is hope!

Steadman would make a fine “First Man”

Steadman would be a great First Man.  Maybe I can be hired as his secretary.  I mean, he’ll have to have someone handle his schedule because President Winfrey will be busy with world issues and……

I know—there’s much talk about Oprah in 2020. And I’ve been reading many tweets and such about the fact she isn’t a politician.  But—how do you think this successful woman became so successful.  She knows her politics and she would be so much better than what we have now.

We need a woman in the White House.  We need Oprah.  We need her in 2020!

Look how presidential Oprah looks.  Oprah. Please run for President.  Please…….

#ImwithOprah

PS.  A lot good the black dresses did when Greta Gerwig wasn’t even nominated for best director.  That just proves women have far more to do than wear a black dress to get their point across.

Here we have a talented woman director and no nomination.  Hmmmm..looks like you’ll need more than black dresses to get the point across!

Speaking of talented women, I did another review–and this is of the Bobbi Boss Weave-a-Wig!  How appropriate! (watch Chippy in the background)

 

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I May Not Be a Very Ethical Shopper. But I Try to Be An Ethical Person

A few days back I was reading a blog post that one of my favorite bloggers wrote.  The blog is High Heels in the Wilderness and the blog is written by Susan Burpee.  Susan is a Canadian who writes beautifully. That’s why I like her blog. She’s no BS.  She tells a story and tells it very well.  She’s not boring. She’s not pretentious. She’s just really nice and that niceness comes across in her blog.

Anyway, the post  is Is It Possible to Be An Ethical Shopper.  After reading the post, and the links she added within the post and which I read, it got me to thinking.

Thinking about how ethical I’m not—as far as shopping goes.   Susan is way more ethical than I am.

Ehhhh.  I may not be an ethical shopper, but perhaps if the sustainable clothing  made by “ethical” companies brought their price points down, maybe more of us would be ABLE to be more ethical in our consumerism.

Allow me to give you my view on this…

When I lived in Manhattan, oftentimes I passed the School for Ethical Culture.  The school always intrigued me because I thought to myself “Who the hell needs to go to school to be taught ethical behavior or ethical culture?

Honestly, I used to really think–“Why is there a school for Ethical Culture”?Being ethical and ethics have always interested me. I looked up a couple of “proper” meanings of the word and got ……  involving or expressing moral approval or disapproval ethical judgments, as well as …conforming to accepted standards of conduct ethical behavior.

Now, in my simple-minded way, to be ethical is to do the right thing. Am I being kind? Am I being a decent person?  Am I trying to be a better person?  Am I making an effort to be socially aware? Do I have a good work ethic?

Yes.  And in my simple and ethical way, I’m also polite–but like Ed Helms, don’t test my politeness!

Ethics is just a part of one’s value system.  As a mother, I may not have ever been perfect and boy I have more faults than the Sierra Madre mountain range. But, I taught my children values and meshed in with the values are ethics.  My three kids have stellar work ethics, they are ridiculously socially aware, they all volunteer and exhibit far better ethical behavior than I do.

Well, we are the way we are because of our values and ethics!

Be that as it may, I am very particular about my work ethic.  When I was working, my ethics were excellent.  I did the job and followed through to completion.  I stayed to finish a task.  Oftentimes I didn’t take a lunch break, I arrived early every day and did my best to stay out of office politics.

And these days ethics in business is practically an oxymoron!

 But back to everyday ethics. Before throwing out any old clothing, I will give those clothes the once over and wash and iron them before taking them to the Goodwill for resale.  I would say that’s trying to be an ethical person.

Surprisingly, my cosmetics and skincare shopping are more ethical than I imagined.  I was actually pretty happy to find that many of the items we put on our faces are made here and in Canada!

I was happy to see that Vivant Skincare and….

…Skinactives are made in the USA.  You can see that I use this a lot by the shape of the jar. 

A great Canadian import..

As is The Ordinary’s products!

At $8.00, Hard Candy Primers, which are made in The States, are an excellent value and buy..

Praise be to God.  Fenty’s Trophy Wife is made in Canada!

Now this is interesting, the photofocus foundation from Wet n Wild is made in the USA, but filled in Mexico!

My favorite eyeshadow palette from Mally is made in China–but the quality is great!

Urban Decay’s Naked 2 Palette.  Made in USA, assembled in the Dominican Republic and the brush that is included is made in China.  In my ethical behavior, I no longer purchase products from Urban Decay simply because the company is NOT ageing friendly. I received the most patronizing email from them and will never again buy anything from this company.  I feel they are not ethical in their recognition and respect of older women.

But shopping for clothing is where my ethics change.  Granted.  I will only purchase my sandals from Rondini in  France.  This is more about brand loyalty than my ethics.  I love the fact that the sandals are custom fit and made on the premises, rather than the mass-produced kind of many designer and not designer brands.  For about the same cost as a pair of Tory Burch made in a third-world country sandals, I can have a far superior pair of footwear.

Image result for atypical60 rondini

One of the collection of my Rondini sandals.  A very ethical family-run company. I’ve been spoiled and even if I can’t make it to France,  I can order these.

Same with Repetto ballet flats.  I’m extremely brand loyal to these beautiful and comfortable flats that are made in France, even though I should be more in tune with the fact they are sustainable and ethically produced.

Image result for atypical60 repetto

And less than Tory Burch flats too.  Repetto produces a quality shoe that is ethically made in France.

Regular readers of this blog are well-aware that my favorite clothing store is J. Crew. And a great number of the clothing from J. Crew is made in China.  It’s not stopping me from shopping there. The brand fits my style. The brand fits my taste and I can always get a great article of clothing for a very, very purse-friendly and inexpensive sale price.  Perhaps the reason the prices can be sold so low during sales is that the clothing is made in China and other countries.

My J. Crew Tippi Sweaters–not made here!  Does that mean that every single buyer of J. Crew clothing is an unethical person?  Hell no it doesn’t!

I’m also not adverse to fast fashion.  (I’ve recently written about my penchant for hi/low fashion).  In fact, fast fashion is a godsend for women, both younger and more mature in age, who cannot afford pricier clothing.

A very inexpensive fast-fashion Chanel-inspired jacket.  From a fast-fashion mail order site–Shein. And I love this jacket and will wear it with no shame!

These are the women who may be working for a larger corporation that hasn’t given out monetary raises in years because they are so hell-bent on putting money into their upper management’s pockets due to the big tax cuts they will receive.  Who’s ethical here?

These are the single mothers—working on a salary that doesn’t afford proper medical care for her or her children.  She needs to spend more on food and shelter for her family.  Why would a woman in this situation be considered unethical if she isn’t buying sustainable clothing?  Perhaps it is the politicians who take the medical care away who are unethical.

Do you remember Carol Burnett’s Charwoman character?   She was so human and despite the exaggerated costume, real. And there are millions of women in America who make a living cleaning and are not well-paid. I know this because my Irish grandmother worked as an office cleaner for years and was never paid what she was worth.

Not everyone can afford to be an ethical shopper.

AG Jeans–made in USA, but look, the jeans are also made of imported Fabric and globally sourced components–what is that about?  FWIT, I am a fan of AG jeans and only make my purchases at Nordstrom rack when they are on deep discount–it the only way I can afford them.  The other two brands are inexpensive and made in China and the quality and fit is excellent! Just sayin’

And another thing.  All these articles about why we should be shopping more ethically-hey, in our very own American backyard people are overworked for minimal wages. Businesses are allowed to make staff feel guilty if they don’t work 50, 60 hours a week whilst giving only five to ten vacation days a year.  Is that an ethical way to treat employees?

Talk to me about being a more ethical consumer after  corporations become more ethical in their practices–especially their ageist practices.

An ethical quality of life is more important to me than the way I shop.

I want to wake up to a completely ethical government and society first and foremost!

I’m sorrynotsorry for my views on this particular subject but I ran across this article from the site RackedEthical, Sustainable Brands You Can Really Trust and it got my goat.  Now, I don’t know about you, but there is no way I am spending $35 on a pair of drawers to cover my ass and lady parts.  Perhaps the brand Anekdot should be more ethical in making a more affordable pair of underpants.

Anekdot has some beautiful underwear but there is no way I’ll spent $35 on underpants–even if they are spun with gold, I’m not spending it!

And please—I know tons of women in our age demographic  who adore Eileen Fisher clothing.  Sustainable perhaps but I refuse to walk around in those sacks of clothing that cost way too much money.  Not now. Not ever. Never!  The brand may speak to many women but to me is says “Don’t buy me.”

Eileen Fisher has a huge and loyal fan base.  I’m sorry, I am not feeling these clothes. They are baggy, boxy and totally unflattering.  I sometimes thing some of these clothing companies are cashing in on”ethical”–is it ethical to make a woman look like a burlap sack?  

Ethical brands may cost more—but the majority of folks, especially now, cannot afford to spend $165 on a pair of denim jeans.  And many who do put themselves in credit card debt. Is that ethical?

Same with my “hair”.  Turns out I’m not a very ethical wig shopper because the wigs I purchase are either made in China or Indonesia.

My hair.  China and Indonesia.  The hair is a touchy subject…

And I thank the good Lord for online wig vendors like Divatress and Hair to Beauty for keeping the costs of my inexpensive hair down.  The ethical thing is that these inexpensive wigs are giving women back their confidence and self-esteem.  You just need to know where to buy the goods.  Come to me an I’ll tell you where!

And in my most humble opinionated opinion, it’s more ethical to buy my cheap synthetic wigs than to give my business to a mumbo-jumbo company that sells false promises of growing hair through their overpriced treatments, shampoos and conditioners.  These companies are completely unethical by taking advantage of the vulnerability of women who still have hope that their hair will grow back more lush and beautiful than it ever was. They use aggressive tactics and harass people to buy the product. I know.  I’ve been harassed by these people.  They ain’t ethical!

Don’t even get me started on the unethical practices of the people who sell Monat. I’ve been harassed and bullied on social media by more than one of their representatives. I wouldn’t care if this stuff grew ten feet of hair overnight–their unethical treatment of consumers is disgusting!

No. I’m a realist and will not let one of those unethical companies take one cent of mine.  I’ll be unethical in my wig shopping instead. And it is because a great number of us women cannot afford to also spend upwards of $500, and into the thousands on wigs.

And even though most of the wig companies that do sell extremely expensive wigs are sustainable and ethical in practices, the average, middle-class and working-class woman cannot afford to spend thousands on wigs.  We have no choice but to veer into that naughty territory.  But, we can purchase from reputable sellers—and that’s what we do!

Let’s be more ethical in our judgement.  Just because someone may like fast fashion, or more affordable clothing or more affordable anything for that matter, doesn’t make them an unethical person.

I truly believe that nobody is unethical on purpose. No. Just. No.  The whole process of ethics is a cross between a spider web and a Pandora’s box.  But a lot has to do with the Benjamin’s (that’s cool people talk for dollars)!

Consumers don’t try to be unethical in their shopping practical on purpose. It’s the purse strings that speak.  So perhaps it’s time for those ethical and sustainable companies to lower their prices on the goods—and we can all be ethical!

Thanks to Sue for allowing me to ping-back her blog.  She really is a great writer and if you haven’t read her blog, head on over to the wilderness and have a look-see; but wear your heels. You’ll really like her!!

You know, I’m not the biggest Rolling Stones fan, but this song, You Can’t Always Get What You Want, is one of my favorites of theirs. It’s true. You can’t always get what you want.  But if you try sometimes, you’ll get what you need.  That pretty much sums up my ethics when it comes to shopping!

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Bland, Blonde, and January’s Hibernation Period Has Begun!

The tea is very hot and comforting to me right now.  The snow’s reflection from the lawns and the rooftops across the street makes the house brighter during this mid-day.

This English Breakfast Tea warms my body because it is 64 degrees in my house and is 10 degrees outside.  I’m afraid to touch the thermostat!

All is quiet.  The Pita bread has been made and is resting easy until dinner tonight.  Dough is in the oven proofing for Bonaparte’s favorite weekend Pullman loaf.

Chef John’s Pita Recipe! Hands down, it’s the best!

Chippy is snuggled up on the cozy throw I placed on one of the sofas to protect it from any paw dirt.

This little nugget is freezing his doggie balls off! But he’s comfy!

As I look around,  I wonder where the holidays went.  Did we celebrate Christmas—or was it just a vivid dream?  Last night Oona and I pondered this while talking on the phone.

Good bye tree…it seemed like we just got you yesterday!

Oops!  Looks like a certain Frenchman is happy the tree is leaving!

Tea is my filler as I study all my Weight Watchers information from years past.  I’m not even going to bother with the new “Freestyle” program because Weight Watchers changes their plans as many times as a mother of a newborn baby changes diapers.

Screw it. I’m sticking to Old School Weight Watchers–this program from 2012!

I’ll stick with what works—looking up points and tracking what I eat.

If I bite it, I write it!  Words to live by!!!!

Though I won’t weigh myself for another few weeks, I feel reassured knowing my clothing still fits—albeit tight, but still fits!

Yeah. They are tight but still fit. A great time to revisit a diet!

It snowed yesterday. Here in the Philly ‘burbs, it wasn’t a blizzard, but it was enough of an accumulation that, with the temperatures in the low teens and single digits, the white blanket will stick around for a while.

It’s gonna be a while before we have drinks out here!!

The view from yesterday…

And my annual “Bare Foot In The Snow” photo!

And that’s what I kind of like about January.  The month always seems longer than it is.  It’s that 31-day span when you just want to live in nothing but pajamas, wrap a cozy throw blanket around your body, sit on a deeply cushioned sofa and sink into it—whether you are reading a book, a magazine, bingeing on Netflix shows or playing Candy Crush Saga on your iPhone.

And as soon as I finish this post and head to the grocery store, I’m coming back and getting into this!!!!

This is the month of hibernation. When the winter is at it’s most wicked.  The wind isn’t softly kissing your cheek—it’s blowing you a sucker punch when you leave the house.  Running in this weather—I’m sorry but the only thing running on me is my nose!

January is a month of planning, reassessing and looking forward to the coming months of summer. And while January is visiting, I make no effort to throw this yearly visitor out to pasture. I welcome her. Life is too short to complain about the baggage she brings.  While we are housebound we get to work on projects.  Perhaps hanging drapes or curtains.  Maybe some new houseplants.  New pillows for the sofas?  Dressing up the bed with a new and fluffier-than-a-cloud comforter?  This is when we can do things that we don’t have time to do during the rest of the year.  January is a respite from our busy lives—time to stop and think about the roses!

I’m writing recipes into my bullet planner–don’t even ask why!!!

And now that the needles from the tree have been vacuumed up, I am enjoying the blandness of the house.

The corner of the living room where the tree stood is back to normal…

And flowers are adding color to a neutral scheme.

But, I’m also enjoying my blondness!  Yesterday a new wig came in the mail.  It was one that I was coveting so badly.  After watching a few YouTube reviews on this perfect long bob, I knew that Swami had to be mine.  The only thing was that she was sold out in every color with the exception of the TSMocha color, a blonde/brown color with darker roots.  I took the chance and ordered it anyway.

As Gomer Pyle would say “Surprise, Surprise, Surprise”!  I’m blonding it!

Can you believe this new hair?  

Let me tell you something.  I dig me as a blonde.  I’m feeling so “Khloe Kardashian”.    The change is so much fun!  And that’s what a wig should be—fun!  At this point wearing wigs is just a part of getting dressed and I’m equating it with a different sweater or shirt, pair of jeans or shoes.

I’m certainly living a little with this small change!!!

With fake hair, I’m not giving my bio hair additional damage by dying it every color of the spectrum. I can plop a different colored wig on my head and that’s it.

It’s funny—as we get age, we should be open to change. It’s a blast to get out of our ruts every now and then.  We don’t need to fulfill everyone’s stereotypes that we should look like a fart waiting to escape our pants.

I feel so Khloe Kardashian. I just may wear this wig on my 63rd birthday this April–or to our Gorman Family Reunion!!!

Change is fun. Change is good.  And whether it is the smallest amount of change like adding an animal print belt to your wardrobe or a change of traveling solo—it’s all wonderful.

What say you?  Any little changes you’re making?  Think about it.  January is a great month for thinking about change—we can do a lot of changing while in hibernation mode!

I did a wig video today on this spectacular long bob.  Here it is if you would like to further see my change. And if you like it, head over and subscribe.  My “goal” is to try to make more videos this year.  “Try” is my motivational word for 2018!

Have a great weekend!!!! XOXOXOXO

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The Christmas Decorations Have Been Put Away—But I’ve Got Gifts That Will Keep On Giving!

When I was a child, my mother never took the Christmas decorations down before The Epiphany, or Little Christmas, or Three Kings Day, in remembrance of the three kings who visited Baby Jesus on Christmas.   That first Sunday of January was always a pretty big deal because it meant that the Christmas Season had officially ended.

Little Me.  Secretly hoping my mother kept the tree up way past Ephipany!

When my three kids were young, I followed that same tradition and actually took the tree down the Monday after, when the kids were in school.  And they came home to the house the way it was before the holidays.

Today I woke up early, enjoyed my morning coffee then hit the deck, so to speak, to dissemble the banisters of the greens, lights and ribbons.  Ornaments were taken off the tree as were the gold garland and lights.

Screw it. I didn’t even bother to get dressed. Once I decided to take the decorations down, that was it!

Until late next November or early December, this little cutie is going for a long nap!

Why does it take less than a half-hour to put UP the lights and about three hours to take the lights DOWN?  And that’s only off the tree!

Honestly, I can’t stand the way the banisters look when I take the decorations down.  That’s the one thing that bothers me. I love the embellished stairways!

Back to basics now.  No more greens and berries atop the cupboard.

The runner we purchased in France last summer is back on the chest.  That  Waterford vase was a wedding gift from my ex-husband and his girlfriend. Isn’t it pretty?  It found a permanent place!

All holiday pillows and throws are now in tubs.  Damn–it looks bland now!

 

Tables and beds were stripped of Holiday linens.  Every decoration was put away.  The large and extremely heavy leaf that rests in the dining room table was taken out—making the transition to the smaller, more intimate one where Bonaparte and I enjoy our evening meals.

The downstairs guest room is back to normal…

And all the Holiday pillows and throws that were downstairs are with their upstairs pillows in tubs for next Holiday Season!

I was on a roll.  The kitchen got the scrub down from me too.  All that holiday baking left its mark in my work space and needed to be a bare slate once again.  Floors were swept and scrubbed.

I also spent the day boiling and reboiling the snail shells from the escargots I made. White vinegar in boiling water.  Four times around does the job. Now they are drying!

The only signs of Christmas 2017 are the many Poinsettias that I can’t bring myself to get rid of.  I actually like to keep them around for as long as possible.  The Christmas tree is still standing.  It is as naked as a jay bird and I’m in a state of shock that the tree hasn’t dried out yet.  Oh, there are fallen needles but it isn’t that bad.  We’ll take the tree out later during the week when Bonaparte has time. But overall, the house is bare.

The plaid tablecloth has been replaced with a Provencal one!  The poinsettias–some of which have been here since Christmas 2016!  I can’t get rid of these.

I also moved some to the dining room table/my pretend office! Geez. When the kids were young the dining room table was the homework and crafting table. Now it’s my make believe office!

Our naked tree.  I’m shocked at how remarkably well this one held up!  The needles are still very much pliable!

The decorations are marked and packed in plastic tubs and I only had one close call. I lost my phone.  In fear that I packed it away and was getting all anxiety-ridden that I would have to go through all the tubs, I retraced my steps and checked a large trash bag on the counter.  Thankfully, it was there.  I was carrying so much garbage around that I inadvertently threw the damned iPhone in the trash!

And now that all is calm, I can enjoy a few gifts that keep on giving.

Oh.  We didn’t exchange gifts this Christmas.  It turned out to be a good thing too because everyone has what they want. There’s nothing we need.  All I wanted was to be with the kids and we had that precious time together. I

However—we did exchange stockings.  And they were filled with candies, little things like socks and playing cards, bottle openers, toiletries and Old Navy Pajama bottoms and tee shirts.

My stocking was not filled by Bonaparte, nor was it filled by Santa.  Oona had the pleasurable task of filling mine.  And it did not come with coal.  But rather, it was filled with a few items that would keep on giving—for a while.

One of the things that was in the stocking was a package of two makeup remover towels.  Fresh Face. Oh, dear God—I was shocked at how great these towels are.  Who thinks of this stuff anyway?  The towels are very soft.  One side a bit less soft and acts as an exfoliating scrubber for skin and makeup. The other, softer side is to clean.  At first, I was skeptical about these—there’s no way makeup can be removed with something this soft.  But wait.  I couldn’t believe how clean the towels get your face.  This is a great gift that’ll keep giving and giving!

The brand is “Fresh Face”

One black and one pink and let me tell you..

I swear I didn’t even need my Albolene to take this gunk off my face! This towel and warm water did it.  I’m still in shock!  These things work!

 

Another gift that will keep giving—and has managed to give every day since I received it, may be a bit taboo of a subject to talk about, but—it’s the greatest thing since hot and spicy tortilla chips!  Poo-Pourri! That’s right.  A little ounce of lemon,Bergamot and lemongrass.  You spray this delightful elixir into the toilet bowl before you go poo-poo!  Trust me. This stuff works like a charm!

Hey. It has the “Good Housekeeping” seal of approval. This works. Never be embarrassed again when you go to someone’s home to visit.  You’ll spend all day on your throne at home!

But what really fascinated me about receiving this little scented gem of a gift was why??  Why did Oona stuff this into my Christmas stocking?  This—from my child.  Mind you, when the kids were young, the door to the little alcove in my master bathroom that housed my throne was always opened.  Not by me either.  Either the dogs decided to follow me hoping for a fallen piece of toilet paper or whatever else they could snatch from me, or one of the kids came running in for money or some sort of crisis.  As if I could help them while sitting down depantsed.

Besides that, I thought anything that left my body came out smelling like a rose.

Apparently not—but this Poo-Pourri is so great that we will be purchasing more of this.

Facial masks and bath fizzies were also a part of the little gifts that’ll keep on giving.  Although I’m down to the last fizzie.

Oona knows what mommy likes!  I used the hydrating one today after I decided to look human again!

…and I’m down to my last bath fizzie thingy!

My stocking also contained this gift that’ll keep giving.  Bonaparte and I can play while enjoying our aperitifs!

And last night, Bonaparte handed me a wrapped box.  I reminded him that we promised no gifts.  But he assured me it was just a little something.  And when I opened it up, I was thrilled with that little something.

It’s a new bottle of my favorite winter scent.  Guerlain’s L’Instant.  This scent was the first gift Bonaparte ever gave me.  We were a “new” couple at the time and he had to go to Paris to take care of some family business.  He came home with L’Instant and I’ve been wearing it ever since I received it in 2004!

I have never, and I mean, never received so many compliments from strangers–especially strange men, when I’m wearing this.  It’s like a scent magnet!!!

I’m at the bottom of my present bottle and this is absolutely the gift that’ll keep giving over the next year!

Oh…and just before I contemplated getting dressed, the doorbell rang. The postman delivered some hair for me.  How could I not make myself presentable? It was a wig I purchased for $6.99!  $6.99—I’m telling you I can’t buy shampoo and hair conditioner for  that price!

I gave myself a gift that keeps giving.  Hair!  Hey, I cleaned up rather well, didn’t I–but I stayed in my pj’s all day!  Why, I look almost as good as the Bobbi Boss wig model!

Bathed and makeup and hair on, I felt like a million bucks.  But I ended up in my pajamas for the remainder of the day.  I do clean up rather well though!

New hair.  Holiday PJ’s–you do realize I’ll be wearing these PJ’s until they fall apart–don’t you?

So that was it.  The decorations are down. Goodbye Christmas 2017.  How’s about you?  Are your decorations still up?  Do you take them down at Epiphany or do you wait a bit longer?  Do you miss Christmas already or are you happy it is back to normal? I wanna know.

Here’s the last Christmas Carol of the year.  As I was putting this away, I had to listen to it and make snow……

Oh Holy Night. Such a beautiful Carol!

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