These are all of my favorites! Ah-MAZING!!!! : )
Even the WORD sounds beautiful, it rolls off the tongue so smoothly, it is one simple syllable. LOVE.
We simply hear the word and our hearts race. We spend up to 76 percent of our lives in search of it. Once we find it…we will stop at nothing to keep it. Jobs have been lost, houses have been burned to the ground, Presidents have come close to impeachment, and some people have even committed murder…in desperation and utter fear of losing that little four letter word.
We are trained to seek it from a young age. Some of us have the perception that we need a cookie cutter life style to mimic the “perfect life” that we have grown up exposed to. From the Brady Bunch, to the Cosby’s, and even good old Forrest Gump who said…and I quote, “I may not be a smart man, but I know what love is.” We buy it all, we want what all of those fictional characters have, so we seek it out. We practice the rituals of dressing ourselves up, going out to places where we can meet that “perfect” one. Worst of all, some of us pretend to be someone we aren’t hoping to attract and snag the right one. Not everyone does that of course, but sadly. entirely too many DO. Regardless of HOW we find them, we then proceed to spend tens of thousands of dollars attempting to impress our friends with our nuptial rituals in an effort to prove how wonderful our “LOVE” is. Then finally, we begin the process of building a life with that person. Buying a home, having children, making memories. For some…the love lasts only a little while, for others; it lasts much longer.
Here is the part I really struggle with. I have fallen into the love/marriage trap. Not once, but twice. That’s right, I have now been married twice. Which means that at least two times now, I have screwed it up. Both times, it was me who asked for the divorce. The first time, after 6 months, because I wasn’t happy. The second time after 15 years, because I wasn’t happy. The thing is though; that it doesn’t take much to make me happy. I don’t ask for the world. I don’t expect expensive gifts. I am a hard worker and bring home money to help support the household. I don’t complain, I cook and clean. Here is what I DO expect. I expect some romance. This doesn’t have to be everyday…but it has to be THERE. I need someone who THINKS ABOUT ME from time to time and takes a few minutes to do something nice for me, for no other reason than because they wanted to. It’s THAT SIMPLE. But yet twice now I have managed to be married to people that I do EVERYTHING I can for, while they go day after day, week after week, month after month, and even year after year under the guise that I am just plain, invisible. Therefore, there is no need to do anything about me.
Perhaps I am just too complacent. My ability to just roll with the punches and be OK with being basically ignored for so long could have worked against me. Maybe my husband would have noticed me, treated me with more love and respect, if I hadn’t let him get away with not doing so. Maybe I should have shouted, screamed, stomped my feet. Perhaps I should have stood up and said “HELLO? DO YOU SEE ME?” Sometimes, I think I did exactly that, only in less obvious ways, but it never really worked. I guess after 15 years, it’s easy to not see the other person anymore, if you don’t want to.
Which brings me to a question. If one of the people falls out of love, while the other does not. What is that couple to do? Should the person who is no longer in love, stay in the relationship and sacrifice his or her own happiness in an effort to save the feelings of the other? Should they be honest, and ask to part and go separate ways? Either way, someone is going to get hurt. That much is inevitable. Having said this. I would WARN anyone who is thinking about leaving to CONSIDER THE CONSEQUENCES very, very seriously. Because that person that you found the “perfect wonderful love” in, that person who promised you that they would never hurt you, who said they would stand in front of a moving train to save your feelings from ever knowing pain…that person that you wanted to spend every moment with, will stab you in the heart and RIP it out (figuratively speaking, hopefully.) That person who knows you so well after a long time of living together and sharing everything, who knows your weaknesses, and your fears, will take those things and use them against you. . They will PUSH YOU in front of that moving train.
You will wonder if you will be never be able to fully trust anyone again. You will be broken. And there is no way to completely heal the breaks. Or is there? The perpetual optimist in me wants to say yes…that love conquers all, that you can start over, that you can find true happiness and love. The realist in me says if you think you have found love again, run far, far away.
Love. I hate that word. I love that word.
I have long been a DIY hair color girl. Over the past 15 or so years I have saved TENS OF THOUSANDS of dollars by paying for a good haircut at the salon after having colored my tresses at home in the bathroom myself. The salon charges $75.00-$125.00 for a color treatment that I can do myself in the comfort of my own home for $9.99.
Here a few of my best tips.
FIRST AND FOREMOST, FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS.
Don’t think you can skip any steps, follow the directions included in the box to a T.
2. Buy the right brand! There are loads of boxes in the aisles and I am pretty sure I have used ALL of them at some point, but there are TWO that are stand out in my opinion.
a. Olia by Garnier, I really like this brand, it is multi tonal (a very important feature of at home hair color that you DEFINITELY need to make sure is part of the features of the color you buy!) Ganier says this about Olia…. “The oil powered technology propels colorants deep into the hair, without ammonia, giving you pure, vivid, long-lasting color. Olia visibly improves and restores hair as the oils help to reverse roughness and dullness for more brilliant, dimensional color and softer, shinier hair with more bounce.” I say it’s just awesome. The scent is even nice which is something you don’t typically get with hair color. The conditioner that comes in the box is just simply….AMAZING! The gloves are strong and thick and are actually even cool looking in BLACK latex. The color was long lasting with little fade, I have to say that I believe it to be the best DIY hair color kit on the market currently.
b. Loreal Feria, I have been using this brand for many many years now. And while I have to say that I am unimpressed and even disappointed in the quality of the gloves (they used to be high quality, thick silver gloves, now they are cheap and thin and come stuck to the instruction packet. The conditioner has changed over the years as well, it’s just “OK” now. The price has not gone down yet the quality of some of the items that come included in the box, clearly has. HOWEVER, the hair color itself (which is OBVIOUSLY the most important part of the box) is still the same, its still fabulous and it still comes in an amazing assortment of multi tonal colors.
Don’t color your hair right after washing it. I like to wait until a weekend that I can skip two days of washing it without having to be seen out in public looking shamefully oily and dirty. But the dirtier it is when you color, the better the results are.
Coat your skin around the hairline with a thin line of petroleum jelly which will prevent the color from staining your skin. (make sure not to get any petroleum jelly on your hair because the color will not take in the spot that it does) Be sure to wash off the petroleum jelly after you are finished coloring with soap and water to prevent break outs.
Use clips to section of your hair, I usually do 4 equal quarters.
Stay tuned for this Friday when I will post a DIY hair color tutorial on YouTube featuring Olia by Garnier!
The link will be “here”.
I was born a crafty girl. From the time i was three years old and i discovered that you could melt crayons onto paper using a light bulb and makes gorgeous colorful collages. Fingerpainting, doodling and even using a light bright filled my happiest moments as a child. Learning to crochet and paint at a younf age were so exciting to me. Artistic to my very core, and born to create, i somehow missed my calling. I attended a vocational high school to learn and discover more artistic techniques. I landed an internship working in the Baltimore City Art Department, which i loved. But learning about office politics was detestable to me so when the internship ended i walked away turned off by art temporarily.
I spent the next ten years trying to find a replacement for what i really loved.
I successfully found it in June 1998, when my son arrived and i fell completely in love with being a mommy. Now that he is almost grown up I love looking back at all the wonderful years I had doing that Mommy job, and how I was able to gain back my love for all things artsy and crafty in the process. In the process of bringing up baby, we created everything from play dough sculptures to salt dough ornaments, cement stepping stones to beautiful hand crafted jewelry, crochet potholders to macrame plant hangers, watercolor paintings to decoupage. Nothing was off limits. Homeschooling him for three years gave me an even greater excuse to push him to utilize his god given talent and creativity even more. I took him along to art classes at the local college whenever possible in the summers and never passed up an opportunity to put a paintbrush into his hand.
Now my son is working towards a career in Art, learning to use the computer to design and animate and program his art in a way I never learned, while also still attending the old school classes learning techniques like stipple and shade. I couldn’t be more proud. It warms my heart so deeply to know that he loves it as much as I do, and that all those fun projects we did growing up grew into a true love for him, just the way it always has been for me.
* If you wish to bake your own and you have lots of room, try this yummy recipe for a homemade crust. I love it and would make it every time myself if I didn’t have a microscopic apartment sized kitchen!
1 package (18.25 Oz. Box) Cake Mix
1 cup Cool Whip
1 whole Large Egg
1 cup Powdered Sugar
Set oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all ingredients, except powdered sugar. Roll a spoonful of dough in powdered sugar. Place on a cookie sheet and bake for about 8 minutes.
Try these in orange, lemon and strawberry and FUNFETTI!
Thanksgiving is upon us! Which leads right into Christmas. NORMALLY, my two FAVORITE times of year.
When I was little, I lived with my grandparents and my mother, who was a single parent, as well as my Aunt April who was in high school and still lived at home. We were what some people would consider poor. Not “dirt poor” but certainly not average either. My grandfather worked hard to provide for the family and my mother worked long hours in factories. I never saw my father who was in the military and living in Germany, I think I can count all of the times I saw him before age 12 on one hand, but my mother did receive a regular check to support us, so he wasn’t a dead beat Dad. We didn’t have much, but what we did have an abundance of in our family, was love. We never went to bed feeling unloved at night. The family we DID have made up for what was missing. I have so many wonderful memories, particularly around the holidays, from childhood. I will never take those things for granted, and I will be eternally grateful to my family for making my childhood so wonderful. In my career it has become abundantly clear that I had it so much better than some children do. I wish that I could help every child that doesn’t know the joy of a wonderful caring family who loves you. That however, is a topic to address in a future blog! I am getting off track here.
Thanksgiving. YUM! I LOVE all of the wonderful smells of delicious foods cooking and baking! I LOVE making the tried and true recipes that were handed down to me by my nanny and my mother…and knowing that they are going to taste exactly the same every time. That as soon as that stuffing touches my lips I will be catapulted into the past to every Thanksgiving that Nanny ever hosted. That woman knew how to HOST a Thanksgiving let me tell you! So many family members would come to dinner that we would have tables set up in three different rooms to contain everyone! Often, it was the one day a year that we would see some family members that lived far away. As children, my sister and I would go shopping with our Nanny for all of the Thanksgiving trimmings. We would painstakingly help her in the kitchen with all of the tiny details (cutting the celery and onions for the stuffing, mixing the pumpkin pie puree, and of course…licking all of the frosting bowls from the cakes…hey, SOMEONE had to do it!) We always broke the wishbone and made sure to each take turns saying what we were thankful for at prayer time. Thanksgiving growing up and even into adulthood was always the official kick off to the holiday season, and always a joyful time filled with family and friends.
Christmas was not much different. Nanny, Mom and Aunt April would pool their money together to get toys for my sister and I. Every year, there were things under the tree. I came from a strict Baptist upbringing, and Christmas was about the birth of Jesus and the miracles of the Nativity, not Santa Claus. Secretly though, I did believe in Santa, and I wrote to him every year, even though everyone said he wasn’t real. One year, 1977 actually, the family managed to really save a lot of money and gave us kids what I refer to as… “The Barbie Extravaganza Christmas of 1977.” My sister and I woke up on Christmas morning and slid on downstairs in our socks only to be completely awed by the sight that lay in front of our eyes. It was like the Barbie aisle at Toys-R-Us had been transported to the living room under the tree. So much pink! Barbie condos (with working elevator), Barbie corvettes, Barbie jacuzzis, Barbie Winnebago’s, Barbie swimming pool, Barbie pinball machine, Barbie dolls, Barbie clothes, Barbie EVERYTHING, as far as the eye could see! Two of everything since there were two of us. The fact that my Aunt, who barely made any money at all as a newly graduated hairdresser, sacrificed her salary to help my mother pull this off, will always be remembered as the most special thing anyone has ever done for me. My mom and nanny aren’t overlooked. As I stated before, I will never take any of this for granted.
Sadly, I lost my nanny 2 years ago, and i just lost my Mom this past summer. In addition to that, my 15 year marriage ended this past summer also. My husband has done everything he can to poison my teenage son against me. He (my son) refuses to spend any time with me other than an occasional hour long dinner meeting. This has been the most devastating thing that has ever happened to me. Until this happened, Jake and I were like peas and carrots! (What is it with me and Forrest Gump references?) His father was pretty much a hands off kind of Dad. So he is really enjoying the new found close relationship he is getting with his Dad. As much as I hate what his Father is doing and has done, I am actually glad to see that they are closer. I just wish it didn’t have to be at my expense. Back to the holidays, because of the divorce, I have lost MOST of my friends, or the people I THOUGHT were my friends, as well. I can not ever remember feeling this alone and sad during the holidays. So in true “JOY” fashion, I will force the sadness out of my mind. There are still plenty of good things in my life, I just have to focus on them. To start off I am going to celebrate Thanksgiving by having dinner with my roommate and his 7 year old son. The menu is going to be a little different this year, as it will include pizza, chicken nuggets and hot dogs, but a few of the good old favorites will still be there as well. (Turkey, stuffing and sauerkraut and pork). I bought a Christmas tree (artificial) and we will put that up the day after Thanksgiving. I have about 5 ornaments to my name since the ex kept the house and EVERYTHING in it, but I will find a way to make it look nice….I’m crafty like that! I hope that this year I can come up with a few good “NEW TRADITIONS” that will make Thanksgiving and Christmas both stay as special to me as they have always been. AND…if my son ever comes back to me, I will share the new traditions with him…
Ps Folks…I DID still write my letter to Santa, I still do believe in him after all. Maybe he can find a way to make my Christmas wish come true. I bet you can guess exactly what I wished for, can’t you?
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