Saturday, July 28, 2012

Friday, July 27, 2012

How To Hang Pictures

First: Decide what your consistent statement will be: frames or pictures. If you are mixing up different styles of frames, choose pictures with a consistent visual thread. Same photographer. Or all black and white. Or all color. Or, choose the same style of frame and mix up the content. 
 Second: Pick your spot. For a jaw-droppingly chic conversation starter, take one area and make it a floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall pictures. Not up to creating a bonanza of imagery? Fine. A careful arrangement of pictures will do quite nicely. 
 So, Next: Prepare you jigsaw-puzzle pieces. What? You thought I was going to send you waving a hammer willy-nilly? No, this is a precision operation, my friend. Do not rush it. This will be the only moment when the phrase "get crafty" applies. First, trace the shape of your frames onto kraft paper. Cut the various shapes out. Then tape them onto your wall-using low stick tape-in your proposed arrangement. Step way back and have a look. Do the corners line up? Does the design scream clever symmetry?
 You May Proceed: What's great about having the paper pictures up is you can nail through the paper with confidence. No Juggling the heavy Mapplethorpe nude in one hand, sharp objects in the other. Once you've got it nailed, simply tear the paper away, replace it with your masterpiece, and repeat. Don't restrict your hangings to paintings and photos. Add mirrors or textiles to the mix. What goes up can come down, so take a risk already!
 Here are a few Ideas of groupings for frames, mirrors, objects, etc. Enjoy, and get creative!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

How To Arrange Flowers In A Vase

Before we begin, I want to stress an important point:  Always be kind to your flowers.   When you get them home or gather them from your yard, cut the stems at an angle.   This allows them to absorb more water, a flower’s best friend, which makes them happy. It’s also important to trim off any leaves below the water's surface as these promote bacteria.   Put your floral materials in a bucket or sink of room temperature water that’s been treated with flower food or a teaspoon or two of chlorine bleach and a teaspoon of sugar.   This should be added to the vase as well.

 First take your vase (flared vases work best) and using your florist's or cellophane tape make a grid across the top, which acts as a support structure for your materials. I'll refer to this many times as "the taped grid method."
 Layer 1- line foliage. I'm using leather leaf fern. Your first stem should be about one and a half times the height of your vase and placed into the center of your grid. The next two stems should be slightly shorter and inserted on either side of your first stem to create a triangle, as in the photo. Remember, no leaves or foliage below the water's surface. All of your stems should look like they originate from an imaginary X in the center of your vase.
 Now fill in with a few more stems of line foliage, turning your vase and filling in gaps, but don't go outside of your initial triangle.
 Layer 2 - round foliage. Next add your round foliage. Here I've used camelia, pointing each stem toward the imaginary X in the center and making sure no leaves fall below the water's surface. Spraying your foliage with a leaf shine really helps to make your arrangement look even more professional.
 
 Layer 3 - line flowers. Insert your line flowers almost like you did your line foliage. I've used three stems of luscious, purple larkspur and three stems of white stock.
 Layer 4 - mass flowers. Add your mass flowers all around your design, cutting them to different lengths, but don't go outside the triangle. Turn your vase and fill in gaps. I've used three lilac scabiosa, one stem of a white daisy mum, and a few golden dahlias, but you could use whatever you want, even use just one type, such as roses.
 Layer 5 - focal flowers. Notice how the brilliant orange sunflowers capture your immediate attention. A few have been placed more toward the base of the design. You could also use sunny, Gerber daisies.
 Layer 6 - filler material. Just a few stems of yellow solidaster inserted throughout the arrangement give it the almost-final touch.
 A small, inexpensive remnant of burlap secured with a rubber band covers the stems and gives the bouquet an added touch of country charm! Try experimenting with different types of flowers and foliage (and even fabric), now that YOU know The Secrets! 


Supplies

You don't need a lot of expensive supplies to arrange flowers, and you should be able to find everything at your local craft or floral supply store or major discount department store. I would also encourage you to visit your local library and check out books on flower arranging.

Floral scissors or cutting shears.   Yes, professional florists use floral knives but that skill takes a little practice and I don’t want you to bleed. Whatever you use, make sure it’s clean.   Flowers' worst enemy is bacteria.
Florist’s or Bowl tape. This is a waterproof tape specifically designed for floral work.   You could also use cellophane, masking or other narrow tape, but bowl tape is your best bet.   It comes in green or clear.
Floral foam. Get several blocks of this as we use it in a number of designs. Make sure to get the foam designed for fresh flowers, not artificial!
Containers. You can start with some simple vases, the likes of which you probably have under your kitchen sink. And start saving your recyclables - frozen food trays, styrofoam trays, deli containers and even two liter soda bottles.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Shopping Short Takes

Treating employees with respect and interacting courteously with other customers are things shoppers should do as a matter of course, and the following tips will make a shopping excursion more enjoyable:

In Department Stores: If a salesperson is nowhere to be found, go to the nearest available register and politely ask where you might find one. If the cashier doesn't know, you could go to the manager. If, at the other extreme, a salesperson latches onto you and hovers as you browse the merchandise, shake him as politely as possible. So that he won't be concerned about losing a commission on a sale, just say, "Thanks, but I'd rather just look on my own right now. If I decide to buy something I'll find you before I take my things to the register."

In Clothing Stores: Make an effort to get in and out of a fitting room as quickly as possible, especially if other customers are waiting. If a salesperson tells you a particular garment "looks fabulous" on you and you're not sure you agree, thank her for her help and go your way with "Thanks so much! I'll let you know if I decide to buy something." When you're finished in the dressing room, put clothing back on the hangers, not in a heap on the floor. Then, depending on the store policy, either leave the clothes inside or just outside the dressing room or put them back on the sales rack.

In Drugstores: If your prescription medicine is expensive, your copayment has increased, or you didn't realize that your deductible has yet to be met, don't take out your frustration on the person serving you; all of these decisions are made by the drug and insurance companies, not by the pharmacist or the sales clerk. Unless you're prepared to wait, call in or drop off a prescription in advance, also if you know that your insurance has changed please bring in all the new information. Pharmacist/techs also have to deal with incoming calls from doctors and patients while giving prescription-filling the attention it deserves, and that takes time. 

At Beauty Salons: Be sure to arrive on time for a beauty salon appointment; being late can slow things down for other customers for the rest of the day. If you want to cancel, calling ten minutes before an appointment may well cost your hairdresser money. If you're not happy with your cut or color, let you stylist or the salon know as quickly as possible, since it could possibly be fixed the next day. A thornier problem comes when you decide to switch stylists (especially one you've had for a long time), whether at the same salon or elsewhere. The solution is to be benevolently honest. Most stylists say they want to know why a client leaves, but try your best not to make them feel insulted. Tell your stylist that you appreciate all her efforts to please you and that you've enjoyed getting to know her (if true), but you just want to try someone else. What you should never do is simply disappear.

At Spas: A spa is by nature a relaxed place, but that doesn't mean you can be late for your appointment. Beyond that, it's fine to talk quietly while having a massage or other treatment., but it's equally okay to remain silent. Do, however, give the therapist feedback on you comfort and any trouble areas she should know about. Remember that spas should remain child-free, since quiet and relaxation are essential to the experience. 

At Yard Sales: Comply with any requests for "no early birds!" Don't arrive while the seller is setting up just to make sure you get the best bargains-considered "dirty pool" in yard-sale circles. Though a sale may start as early as 7:00 AM, the neighbors may not yet be awake-so forgo loud conversation or laughter. Don't block a neighbor's driveway with your car. Leave the displays as you found them, not is disarray. A little bargaining is often expected, but don't haggle aggressively over prices. Carry small bills and plenty of change. The seller doesn't have the resources of a regular store, so don't be surprised or annoyed if he can't change a $20 bill when your paying for a $1 item.    

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Theater

Attending live theater is one of the few activities that separate human beings from the other primates. And unfortunately, most people haven't a clue how to behave when seeing a show. My Seven Cardinal Rules for Broadway, Off-Broadway, the opera, the ballet, and touring groups:

  1. Wear something nice. Your fellow theatergoers are paying for the entire experience, which includes being surrounded by fabulous people.
  2. When entering a row in which people are already sitting, shimmy in facing the stage. It's better to put you buttocks in someone's face than your reproductive organs.
  3. Don't be a hair-hopper. The legitimate theater is no place for a leftover Whitesnake groupie. The person behind your purchased a view also.
  4. Keep you head fairly still. I had to get snippy with a woman in front of me recently because her head was bopping like a metronome, and I hate having to get snippy.
  5. Turn your cell phone OFF, not on vibrate. Vibrate makes noise, ya dope.
  6. Unwrap your candy before the show. And don't crunch it.
  7. Don't watch the entire show, then leave right before or during curtain call just so you can be the first one to catch a cab. How incredibly rude to deprive the cast of their applause! The next time I see you do this, I might "accidentally" stick my foot in the aisle and trip you. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Tipping Pointers

I have a general rule, never tip anyone less than a buck. I don't care if it's a bartender who poured you a soda, and Albuquerque cab driver, or the kid that delivers your Sunday paper. Two shiny quarters may have been generous back in 1952, but today they won't even buy your a cup of coffee. Many people in the service industry make less than minimum wage because they rely on tips. Hook 'em up!
  With that said, I don't think it's necessary to give a dollar every time your get a venti-triple-half-caff-nonfat-sugar-free-vanilla-cappu-latte. Tip jars are optional and should be used when you've received exceptional service.

Here are some general rules of thumb:

Waitstaff:  15% for average service; 18% for very good service; 20% for exceptional.

Bartenders: $1 a drink for sodas, beer, and basic drinks; $2 for more elaborate concoctions.

Coat Check: $1 per item.

Hairstylist: 15% for a good job; 20% if you love your new 'do.

Manicurist/pedicurist: 15%

Massage Therapist/Facialist: 15% for a good massage; 20% for a great one.

Driver (taxi or car service): 15% for good service; 20% if driver helped with bags, opened doors, etc.

Valet Parking: $3 upon retrieval of your car-slip him at least $5 when handing over your car if you want to make sure your Porsche doesn't get scratched.  

If you have an IPhone here is an App that you can download to calculate your tips for you!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

What Is Wrong With Hollywood? These Movies Stink!!

So yesterday I decided after work I was going to have a "movie day", and I decided to watch 3 movies at the local theater. First I watched Magic Mike, which I was really looking forward to. But to be honest I was really disappointed in the movie. It was really slow, even though there were good looking men in it, it just didn't do it for me. 
 Then I watched Ted, which I had heard was pretty funny. I actually caught myself checking Facebook instead of watching the movie. Yeah it had it's funny parts to it, but all around I just didn't like it.
 My third and final film of the day was Abraham Lincoln Vampire Killer. I should have realized from the get go, just by the name of the film that I was going to be a doozie, but I gave it a shot. I did like some parts of the film, but near the end I just really wanted to call it a night and go home. 
Maybe I was just in a bad mood or something, have you seen any of these films? If so, what did you think of them? Were you as disappointed as I was, or did you like them? Sorry about not having any posts this past week, it was a really crazy at work! 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Friday, July 13, 2012

Annoying Behaviors To Teach Young Adults Not To Partake In

Some EVERYDAY BEHAVIORS AND HABITS are annoying and unattractive; some are dangerous to young people and others. Be on the lookout for any of the following:

Gum Chewing. This habit ought to be confined to private times of the company of close friends--not during class, at work, or in worship services, and not when in conversation. Young people must understand that watching someone chew gum is, as older generations say, "like watching a cow chew its cud." Be discreet (mouth closed, no smacking or popping). Wrap used gum and dispose of it in a waste container. Never drop chewed gum or wrappers on the ground.

Playing loud music. In any setting where people may be disturbed, playing loud music is really intolerable. Music should never be so loud that it rattles others' nerves. If your child can't live without music, equip him with a portable player and earphones. Set firm rules about the use of booming car stereos. 

Whispering, telling secrets, and giggling behind hands. These discourtesies usually peak in the middle school years. When you see it going on, tell the youngsters to stop. Make it clear that the behavior is extremely rude and immature and can be cruel to anyone left out of the whispering. 

Spitting. When older children and teens spit, they're probably showing off or imitating popular sports stars. Spitting is disgusting and unsanitary. Stop the behavior when you see it, and be firm that, far from being "cool," spitting is childish and uncouth. (For your child's health, be alert for any sign of the highly dangerous habit of tobacco chewing.)

Smoking. Cigarette smoking attracts teens and some younger children. Many experiment, and a disturbing number will take up the habit. No one should encourage underage smoking, but teens who smoke must follow the rules: Do not smoke in anyone else's home or car (even if the owner smokes) or in designated nonsmoking areas; be sure cigarettes are extinguished and dispose of ashed and butts neatly (not on the ground or out the car window); never offer cigarettes to anyone who is underage. Finally, always ask permission before lighting up and don't argue if anyone says "no."     

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Favorite Party Themes

Arabian Nights
This is a great theme if you like the look of a turban or gilded, heavy fabrics and lots of gold jewelery. (And who doesn't?) It's also fairly easy to decorate for an Arabian Nights party: Make the venue look like a harem tent, with lots of candles, scarves, rugs, and pillows all over the place!
Casablanca
Men in white jackets, ladies in cocktail dresses with shoulders--this film had enough class and sensuality to make it a classic and sexy enough, even decades after its release. Bonus if you make a playlist of classic '40s hits.
Masked Ball
Truman Capote's Black and White Ball, held at the Plaza Hotel in NYC in 1966, is without a doubt the most memorable masked ball of the second half of the twentieth century. Capote planned the party for years and used the invites as social weapons--many friends were made and lost as a result of this shindig's yearly VIP list. The point is, everyone wanted in: Dressing up and wearing masks made the party exciting!
 '70
If you're using it as an excuse to wear an Afro wig and smoke hash, a hippie theme can easily slip into cheesy territory. The trick is to take your looks seriously, searching out legitimate costumes from thrift stores or older family members. 
Toga!
Although toga parties are famously popular on college campuses and the frat scenes. I'm not suggesting you wrap yourself in stained bedsheets. I am talking about a civilized toga party (yes they exist), where men wear Roman battle dress and the ladies slip into their favorite Lanvin or vintage Pierrot dresses. Set out a few bowls of olives and grapes maybe some feta and Greek dips, and you've got a party on your hands!
1920s or Great Gatsby
F. Scott Fitzgerald's1925 masterpiece has become as icon of American literature. But more important, it captured black-tie decadence and has continued to inspire amazing parties. Throw on a drop-waist sequined frock, style your hair in a bob (or buy a wig), and make the guy starch their white shirts and slap on their black bowties--and get ready to dance around until the sun comes up (or the rents come home).
Halloween
The last day in October is one giant theme party. People expect some kind of costume will be necessary which shuts up the lazy spoilsport demographic. Your creative friends will come up with something ironic or comical, while your trampy friends can wear black silk lingerie throw on some little cat ears, and go as pussy cat. If you're really into themes, you can take your Halloween party a step further by giving your soiree a mini-theme, like Surrealist Ball.
      

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Dining Dilemmas



Sometimes, all the careful preparations in the world cannot save us from those nightmare scenarios in which a lady's veneer has the potential to crack. Here's how to combat the worst. 

 You Have Food Stuck Between Your Teeth
If you can sense an offending article in your teeth, the best thing to do is to excuse yourself from the table and remove the dental deviant in the privacy of the bathroom. Never launch an attack while still at the table. If you cannot possibly steal away, bring your napkin to conceal your mouth with one hand and dislodge the food as quickly as possible with the other.

You Notice Someone Else Has
Discreetly alert your companion to the food by indicating toward your own teeth. Hopefully this is all it will take for them to realize the situation. If not, let them know quietly, without allowing anyone else to hear. 

You Find Yourself Chewing On A Piece Of Gristle
If you don't think a gulp of water will help the sucker slip down, very discreetly bring your napkin to your mouth and spit the gristle into it. Dispose of it as soon as possible. 

Sending Food Back
Again, a good attitude is the order of the day. Don't shoot the messenger--be polite to the waiter and explain the problem as clearly as possible. They should replace your meal and may even take the cost of it off the total. Remember that this criticism of the meal can cause a bad atmosphere, so think twice about kicking up a fuss when  you are in a big group. Sometimes it's just not worth it.

Splitting The Bill
Finances and friends don't mix well, so be prepared to pay over the odds if it will make for a more amicable experience. If you know you have eaten more courses or ordered more expensive dishes than your friends, offer to pay more, and if you have to leave early, make a larger contribution than necessary, so no one is left to pick up your tab. If someone offers to pay for you, it's polite to protest once, but then accept graciously. Always tip good service-10-15 percent is usual in the UK, for example;whereas in the US, you need to opt for 15-20 percent.    

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

What To Wear If The Invitation Says...



"Black tie optional." "Smart casual." These and other terms on party invitations are intended to tell the recipient what is appropriate to wear for the occasion, but they are just as likely to raise questions. For hosts and hostesses, then more thoughtful approach is to stick with the standard categories (business casual, semi-formal, black tie and white tie) and to use ambiguous terms (sport casual, smart casual and dressy casual) only when an explanation is supplied. This chart includes traditional as well as current dress notations:

White Tie
Men. Black tailcoat, matching trousers with a single stripe of satin or braid, while pique wing-collared shirt with stiff front, white vest and white bow tie; white or gray gloves; black patent shoes and black socks.
Women. Formal evening gown

Black Tie
Men. Black tuxedo jacket, matching trousers, formal (pique or pleated-front) white shirt, black (silk, shiny satin, or twill) bow tie, black cummerbund to match tie, dressy suspenders to ensure a good fit (optional); black patent shoes and black dress socks; no gloves. In summer or on a cruise: may have white dinner jacket, black tuxedo trousers, plus other black tie wardrobe.
Women. Formal evening dress or short, dressy cocktail dress.

     Black Tie Optional
Men. Either a tuxedo (see "Black Tie" above) or dark suite with white shirt, conservative tie. 
Women. Formal evening dress; short, dressy cocktail dress or dressy separates.
Creative Black Tie
Men. Tuxedo combined with trendy or whimsical items, such as a black shirt or matching colored or patterned bow tie and cummerbund; black patent or dressy black leather shoes and black dress socks.
Women.  Formal evening gown, dressy cocktail dress or dressy separates; any of these accessorized with items such as an ostrich-feather boa, a colorful brooch, or and elegant shawl.
Semiformal
Men. Dark, dressy business-type suit (usually worsted wool), with or without a matching vest, white shirt, conservative tie; dressy leather shoes and dress socks. 
Women. Short afternoon or cocktail dress or long, dressy skirt and top.

Festive Attire
Men. Slacks, seasonal sport coat or blazer in color of choice, open-collar shirt, perhaps a holiday-theme tie.
Women. Short cocktail dress or long, dressy skirt and top or dressy pants outfit.

Dressy Casual
Men. Slacks, seasonal sport coat or blazer, open-collar shirt.  
Women. Street-length dress, skirt and nice top, or dressy pants outfit.

Business Casual
Men. Khakis or slacks, seasonal sport coat or blazer, open-collar shirt.
Women. Khakis or slacks, skirt, open-collar shirt or knit shirt, sweater.
Sport Casual
Men. Khakis or jeans; nice tee, polo, or casual button-down-the-front shirt.
Women. Khakis or jeans; nice tee, polo, or casual button-down-the-front shirt.
Beach Casual
Men. Khakis or shorts (cargo or Bermuda), knit shirt, sport jacket optional.
Women. Sundress or khakis or shorts (cargo or Bermuda), open-collar shirt or knit shirt, lightweight jacket or sweater.
Holiday Casual
Clothing is the same as for "Business Casual" with some holiday colors or designs. Just be careful not to overdo.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Dealing with Rudeness



For a word of only four letters, "rude" has more than its share of meanings, ranging from in-your-face aggressiveness to insults so subtle they don't hit you until hours later. But the source of rudeness is always the same: a simple lack of courtesy and respect. A speeder tailgates you on the freeway. An acquaintance asks about your salary. A man you've just met makes suggestive remarks about your figure. The woman at the cash register fails to even acknowledge your presence, much less say "thank you." On the surface these acts are very different, but at bottom they all qualify as rude.

Aggressive rudeness. Intentional, no-holds-barred, no-bones-about-it rudeness is designed to punish you for something you've done (you're screamed at after accidentally bumping into a passerby). to put you in your place (a coworker unfairly criticizes you for "thinking you're so smart"), or to exact revenge (on the road, you're purposely slowed down by a driver who feels you cut him off).

Casual rudeness.  Often unconscious on the part of those who practice it, casual rudeness isn't directed at you personally but drives you crazy nonetheless. Falling into this category are such acts as disturbing the peace by loudly yakking away on a cell phone, rushing from the back of a line to the front of the newly opened one, and blocking a busy sidewalk by standing smack-dab in the middle to chat with friends. 

Rudeness in disguise.  Some rudeness comes clothed in kid gloves. The perfect example is the back-handed compliment: "Love that new haircut! You look so much better than you did with long hair!"

 Unwitting rudeness. Poor table manners and talking at high volume because of a hearing problem are among the behaviors that are unintentional but are often spoken of as rude. 

Bottom-of-the-barrel behavior. Some behaviors are not only rude but also repel lent. Among these never-ever are spitting on the sidewalk, belching at the table, blowing your nose on anything but a tissue or handkerchief, and using hair-curling obscenities in public, especially around young children.

While surveys have shown that almost three-quarters of Americans think that rudeness has increased in the last few decades, it's also true that people have believed the same for centuries. (A book that took the English to task for a boom in bad behavior was written in 1405!) Still, modern life has spawned a whole new set of stress-builders all of which contribute to bad behavior. Media and entrainment are often blamed for undermining civility, and there's plenty of ammunition for the critics. On TV and in film, grossness and disrespect are often portrayed as humorous: in music, foul language is part of the package in certain genres; and in video games, the victorious are often the most violent.
    Sociologist also cite our obsession with self as a cause-good old American individualism gone wild, with people convinced that things should happen their way. We also feel the need to pack as much as we can into a twenty-four-hour day, and the technological revolution of the last two decades has made it possible to do just that. The price is a barrage of instructions, from the nonstop cell phone chorus to email in-boxes crammed with spam. Overlay it all with overcrowding in sprawling cities and suburbs and the need to do everything fast, and it's no wonder that stress-induced rudeness seems to spring forth from all corners and at every turn.           

Saturday, July 7, 2012

A Weekend With "Sprout"

Hey Lovelies! As I type this I am enjoying some well needed time away to see my sister, B.I.L, and sprout! I love coming to NOVA, it is such an amazing place! So much to do and see, but let me tell  you it is H O T!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, July 6, 2012

What Your Walk Says About You

It's not only supermodels who k now that perfecting their walk and posture can make or break their reputations. While a catwalk strut might not be the stride we're striving for, it's a good example of how the way you hold yourself can illustrate the kind of image you wish to present. It's so much more than just putting one foot in front of the other. A confident pace, a brazen strut, a stiff march, a casual stroll, a heavy plod, and awkward shuffle-they all paint a picture of the kind of person you are before you've even uttered a word. And it doesn't stop there. There's no point developing a superior stride if the moment you come to a standstill and you drop into a slouch. Elegant poise gives and instant ladylike impression. Just look at the way ballerinas carry themselves.

 Have you ever seen a dancer who appears anything other than the epitome of sophistication? Their apparent ease and naturally graceful posture give them a dignified appearance. But with a little effort, it is easy to emulate this chic stance and to have everyone in the room commenting on your presence and poise. Great posture and poise have so many benefits-from helping your clothes to hang better and making you appear both taller and slimmer to illustrating your self-assurance, elegance, and grace. And the right walk and ability to sit correctly can not only help you land the job you want, but will also make you feel comfortable and confident at the most elegant of soirees. So step to it!

What Lies Beneath

The most beautiful dress can be ruined by one thing: lumpy, bumpy underwear. Bras that bulge and visible panty lines are two things every lady should learn how to combat. Start by seperating your lingerie into two categories: the pieces that should be seen in public and the pieces that shouldn't. Contrary to the past, it is no longer considered bad etiquette to show off some of your lingerie. A vintage silk camisole looks beautiful worn with a cashmere cardigan and pencil skirt, and bra straps that are adored with lace and chiffon are made to be seen. Choose soft shades, though-scarlet or hot pink scream "harlot" so stick to hues of blush, oyster and pale gray instead. As for never-to-be-seen-in-public lingerie, opt for  peach or flesh colored shade, which will be invisible under the sheerest top, and choose seamless pieces that are unadorned. While g-string briefs are not as glamorous as frilly underpants, they are a much more sensible choice under slim-fit pants. Similarly, a T-shirt bra, with not lace or trimmings, might be dull to look at, but don't underestimate its powers; it will create a smooth line when worn under a blouse or tee. 

Many women don't wear the correct size bra. Just look around and you'll notice breast escaping over the top of too-small cups, too-tight straps squeezing back flesh, or sloppy breast barely held in by a saggy, too-large bra. It really is worth the bother to get yourself properly measured in a lingerie store. Brands and styles can fit differently, so try a few on before making a decision. Bras should never dig into your shoulders (loosen the straps,) squeeze your ribs, or create unsightly bulges in you back (go up a size around the back.) Larger busts need more support, so stick to underwire bras with at least two hook closures and the thicker shoulder straps. Big cup sizes don't necessarily mean ugly bras. Look for distinguished brands that make glamorous bras in larger sizes. Invest in a few of these and they will make a big difference to your shape and the way your clothing hangs. But if you have a small bust and don't require so much support, experiment with wireless bras, bandeau tops, and details such as bows, ruffles, and embroidery. 

The Undergarments Every Woman Should Own
  1. Black strapless bra.
  2. Flesh-colored T-shirt bra.
  3. Balcony-cut bra.
  4. Multiway bra.
  5. Sports bra.
  6. Pretty Camisole with matching underpants.
  7. Boyshorts.
  8. Flesh-colored G-string.
  9. Cotton briefs.
  10. Black slip.
  11. Blush slip.  
   

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 236th Birthday America!!!


Happy Birthday America!!!
Everyone have a safe and happy holiday! I'll be back tomorrow!!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

I'm Going To Be An Aunt!!!!!

I am so excited to announce that my sister and brother-in-law (Talitha and Michael) are going to have a baby!! I am so excited, I can't even begin to explain how happy and over the moon my family and I are. This will be the first grand-child on our side, so needless to say this child will be SPOILED!!! We are not for sure what "sprout" is it, but as long as it is healthy we don't really care! Even though I really, really want it to be a boy!!!! I will keep you all updated on the progress and birth of "sprout," he or she will make their arrival in early 2013!

Monday, July 2, 2012

The Cost of Kate Middleton's Beauty Routine




If you're envious of Kate Middleton's shiny, perfectly curled hair, you can take solace in the fact that flawless grooming doesn't come cheap. According to US Weekly, The Duchess goes to her favorite salon, Richard Ward Hair and Metrospa in London, three times a week for $75 blowouts. A source told US, "She loves her time there and she has known everyone there for years so it's really relaxing for her." Hair salon visits at least 156 times a year?! Must be nice.



When you're a member of the royal family, appearance is everything. Middleton, who is constantly photographed, must constantly uphold an image of elegance and class, so naturally her skin, makeup, nails, and hair must all be impeccable. We dug a little deeper into Middleton's beauty routine to see how much she spends on grooming. We've rounded up her favorite products and estimated her yearly beauty budget based on reported sources, general habits, and cosmetic expiration dates. Let's see how it all adds up.

Hair
-Blowouts at Richard Ward's salon are $75. Three times a week would cost $11,732 a year.
-ELLE UK says Middleton gets $11 Keratin Infusion treatments with each blow dry. Three times a week would cost $1,720 a year.
-Haircuts are $242 a pop. Every six weeks would cost $2,000 a year.
-Richard Ward told the Daily Mail he dyes Middleton's hair with L'Oreal Symbio and Fuente Organic colour. A full head of lowlights at his salon costs $376. Every six weeks would cost $3,008
-BellaSugar, who provided extensive coverage of Middleton's grooming routine, says the Duchess likes the Kérastase conditioning treatments, which cost $20 to $30. Spending $25 once a month would cost $300 a year.

Makeup
Middleton did her own wedding makeup, though she did take lessons. Here are the products she's purchased and used:
-YSL's Touche Eclat Radiant Touch, $40
-Lancome Hypnose mascara, $26
-Lancome Hydra Zen Neurocalm, $60
-Laura Mercier Oil-Free Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20, $42
-Bobbi Brown foundation, $46
-Bobbi Brown Pale Pink blush, $24
-Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick Compact, $39
-Bobbi Brown eye shadow in Ivory, Slate, and Rock Star, $21 each
-Bobbi Brown Black Ink Long Wear Gel Eyeliner, $22
-Bobbi Brown Sandwash Pink lipstick, $23
-Bobbi Brown Crystal Lip gloss, $17
If she bought all these three times a year her makeup would cost $1,206. Skin care
-A product loyalist, Middleton loves Swiss brand Karin Herzog's skin care items. The company's managing director told Style.com her favorite items are the $50 Professional Cleanser, the $76 Vita-A-Kombi 1, the $32 Vita-A-Kombi 3 Spot Zapper, and $54 the Oxygen Face Cream. Restocking these items every three months would cost $848 a year.
-The Daily Mail says Mother-in-law Duchess Camilla convinced Middleton to try a $260 Bee Sting Facial from Deborah Mitchell, and now she's hooked. Monthly facials would cost $3,120 a year.
-According to the Telegraph, Middleton was spotted buying Nivea Visage Pure & Natural Moisturising Day Cream at Boots for about $8. Every three months would cost $32 a year.

Nails
Before the royal wedding, Camilla took Middleton to get her nails done by Marina Sandoval at the Jo Hansford Salon. They used Essie's Allure nail polish. BellaSugar says manicures there are $58, and pedicures are $76. Bi-weekly mani/pedis would cost $3,484 a year.

Tan
Kate Middleton and her sister both love spray tans, and BellaSugar claims their regular salon charges $118. If she went bi-weekly it would cost $2,832 a year.

Fragrance

Middleton wore Illuminum White Gardenia Petals perfume on her wedding day. It costs $150 a bottle, so buying two a year would cost $300.

Teeth
According to the Daily Mail, Middleton went to orthodontist Dr. Didier Fillion who closed the gap between her two front teeth with lingual braces using 3D technology. She had a $157 consultation and the treatment may have cost around $7,000. That's $7,157 total.

Kate Middleton's yearly beautifying total: $37,728. But we think she'd look gorgeous on any budget.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Friday, June 29, 2012

What A Womans House Says About Her

Have you ever wandered what your room/home says about you and your personality?  



Books: Books tell you a lot about a person. First of all, the fact that she has books is a sign that she's quite smart, many people these days do not read at all. Now ask yourself, are these serious work related books suggesting she's career driven, Harry Potter, she has a childish side that believes in magic still, factual and scientific or historical she may have a nerd streak, religious, telling you what her beliefs are, Austen she has a sense of romance and isn't ashamed of it, poetry, she's artistic and in touch with her emotions, action she might be a Tom Boy or something else.  At the same time you can learn something from her reading level.

Products: Women tend to use a wide range of products. Check to see what specific products she has too. This can help you out if you want to buy her some perfume or candles etc. 

Music: If eyes are the windows to the soul, then music may well be the door and finding someone with the same music taste as you is often a very good sign (though of course not crucial). Now if you are like me I love every type of music; modern pop, club music, mellow, and even opera. This means I am open to new things in life. 

Shoes: Women love shoes, so a huge collection of shoes is not unusual. Look to see if the shoes have lots of heels which makes us feel sexy, or are there mostly flats. Which mean she is practical and likely sensible, but also has style.

Tidiness: Women are as a rule tidier than men, but this isn't always the case. A messy room suggests someone who is either very laid back or very busy, or both. A tidy room, may mean that she is particular about how her life is ran, which can be a good and bad thing all at the same time.

Photographs: If a woman has a lot of photos of friends and family up then you again know that she's very sentimental. If she has lots of photos of herself then this might mean that she is quite vein, or it might just mean she likes herself. Pay attention also to what she's doing in the photos, does she seem to go out a lot? Go on lots of vacations? Does she have lots of male friends? If the latter is true then this might suggest an outgoing tom-boy-like personality but may be threatening for you as well. Does one person appear a lot in all the photos? Who is this?

Color scheme and decor: If the room is pink then you're looking at someone very feminine and perhaps a little young at heart. If the room is a more visually assaulting purple then she might still be quite young but perhaps a little 'cooler' in the traditional sense. More subtle colors are more mature and tell you less about her personality.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

How To Decorate Your Vanity

A vanity is a very sacred place for a woman. This is where we brush our hair out at night, and apply our make up in the morning. It is where we look at ourselves and admire what God has given us. On my vanity I have some of my favorite creams, nail polishes, and perfumes set neatly along with some red roses to give it a little more class. Here are some tips on how to decorate your very own vanity at home! 


Place a piece of vintage fabric or a scarf on top of the vanity table, which will add interest while protecting the surface. Pick a cloth made of a machine-washable fabric, such as cotton, in case make-up or lotion drips onto it. Choose a cloth featuring a featuring a feminine color like pastel pink or lavender and a floral-patterned design for a charming look.

Arrange eye-catching perfume bottles, such as cut-glass versions, on a tray and set it on the table. Choose a silver or gold tray featuring a mirrored base for an elegant style.

Place beauty essentials, such as cotton swabs and balls, tweezer and combs in vintage crystal canisters as a handy and decorative touch. Choose hand-painted ceramic canisters instead to give the space an artistic flair.

Decorate the table with a vase of flowers to infuse the room with color and natural fragrance. Fill a crystal or milk glass vase with pink roses or hydrangeas for a vintage-inspired look. Place red roses or yellow tulips in a sleek black glass vase for contemporary style.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How To Make Introductions

Have you noticed that many young people do not make introductions anymore? I thought this was common curtsey, where have our manners gone? If you are out with someone in public and you run into an acquaintance, you should always introduce the person you are with to the other person. Unless they are already know each other that you know of. Every greeting and introduction is a chance to show your respect for others and to create a favorable impression of yourself. So the most important thing is to do it-make a conscious effort to say "hello" even when you feel a bit grumpy or shy, and make introductions even if you aren't quite sure of the finer points of who is introduced to whom.    

 Tips for Making a Great Introduction
  • Look at the person you are speaking to first, then turn to the other person as you complete the introduction.
  • Speak clearly. Mumbling defeats the purpose of the introduction.
  • Use courteous language. “I’d like to introduce…,” “May I introduce…,” “I’d like you to meet…” are all good options. “May I present…” is the formal version.
  • Use preferred names and titles. 
    • In more formal situations, or when there’s an obvious age difference, it’s best to use courtesy titles and last names: “Mrs. Samson, I’d like you to meet Mr. Jacobs.” This lets Mrs. Sampson invite Mr. Jacobs to use her first name, or not.
    • Even in informal situations or with contemporaries, it’s helpful to use first and last names: “Judy, this is Sam Jacobs. Sam, this is Judy Samson.” You can use a nickname if you know the person prefers it.
  • Teach children to use adults’ titles, unless an adult specifically requests using his or her first name: “Mrs. Samson, this is my nephew, Benji Rose. Benji, this is Mrs. Samson.”
  • It’s fine to skip last names when introducing your spouse and children, unless they have a different last name than yours.
  • Introduce other family members by their full names, unless they request otherwise. It’s also a good idea to mention the family relationship: “Uncle Arthur, may I introduce Mark Weston. Mark, this is my great-uncle, Arthur Pearson.”

  • When introducing someone to a small group, it’s practical to name the group members first, primarily to get their attention: “Sara, Kathy, Dan, I’d like to introduce Curtis Tyler. Curtis, I’d like you to meet Sara Rocher, Kathy Henley, and Dan Quinn.”
  • Start a conversation.  Try to find some topic the two people have in common: “Sam, I think you and Jake share a passion for Italian wine. Jake might enjoy hearing about your wine tour in northern Italy.”
 

Here’s a handy chart of who might come first:

Speak to this person FIRST…

…and this person SECOND

Social Situations

Your grandparents, parents, or anyone older than you
Your contemporary (or younger)
Your friend
Another family member
An adult
A child
A woman
A man
Someone with a title: Senator, Mayor, Judge, Colonel, nobility, Bishop, Reverend, Professor, Doctor; anyone senior in rank to you (boss, CEO)
Your contemporary (or younger)
Your guest of honor
Others attending the event

Business Situations

A client
Anyone in your company, including your CEO
Your boss, or a higher-up
A person of lower rank in the company

 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

What Your It Bag Of Choice Says About You!

  I saw this article on refinery29.com and I had to share it! Enjoy!!
 Your eyes may well be the windows to your soul, but we believe your handbag reveals more about your personality than a staring contest ever could. In fact, your handbag is probably the one fashion item you consistently wear the most, and anything that you trust to shuttle all your daily necessities and to match all your outfits should be pretty darn distinctive. And in the world of accessories, there are a few carryalls that have reached icon status. We're highlighting six…and the personalities we think they reveal. So, tell us, which bag are you?
WhatDoesYourBagSay




Illustrated by Isabelle Rancier

Monday, June 25, 2012

Am I The Only One That Still Writes In Cursive?

I have noticed a lot lately that it seems that I am the only one at my workplace that still writes in cursive, and I have quite a few people come up and ask me what it is that I wrote because they can not read it. I have found this really odd, and somewhat heart breaking to be honest. You may be wandering why it is heart breaking, but my reason is because it seems like a part of my history, or should I say American history is being erased? When I entered the fourth grade, I had a writing class that taught us the basics of writing in cursive. I felt so  sophisticated to write in this new writing form, but do they even teach cursive in school anymore? I love how the letters glide together so fast when writing in cursive, where as with print it seems to take longer for me to even write my name! Does that make sense to you?

 Many years ago handwritten communication was the only way for individuals to express themselves. So logically, good handwriting, and specifically the highly personalized, more intricate cursive format, was an important skill. Poor handwriting, like poor speaking, could make you look stupid, lazy or ignorant. But in this culture of apps and OMGs is, at best, up for debate. Just because we have spellcheck, we don’t stop teaching spelling. Spelling and grammar checks should be used as guides, not as the definitive on right and wrong. We all know the subtleties the spell check can miss. A few misspelled words or improper usage can make you look unprofessional at best or at worst, uneducated. Being able to write nicely isn’t something you can pick up easily later in life, just in case you decide maybe it is a skill worth having after all. And in this day and age, a handwritten note certainly will get someone’s attention, as it’s definitely not the norm anymore.

 While cursive isn’t exactly necessary for a fulfilled life, I hate to see it go entirely. Can’t we build a little time in for both learning cursive and keyboarding? Yes, I know all the standardized test preparations take up a lot of time, but that shouldn’t be an excuse. I have heard of plenty of schools no longer emphasizing cursive, but I haven’t heard of too many schools offering keyboarding in lower grades. And in lower grades, many teachers are already asking that papers and book reports be turned in typed. Both skills — cursive and keyboarding — are valuable assets for our children and worthy of taking the time to learn while they are young.

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