Product Junkie

2 Jul

Anyone who takes a look at my face knows that I’m a big fan of eye makeup.  In fact, I frequently tell people that it is never too early for eyeliner.  And, until now, nothing short of Pond’s Cold Cream (former pageant girls know what I’m talkin’ bout) could come close to the removal of said eye makeup.

Enter Sephora’s Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover.

ImageTo borrow a line from a co-worker of mine, this stuff is the dope jam.  It removes every trace of makeup gently, and without having to use a ton of it (or cotton balls!).  The $6.00 bottle would’ve lasted the late Tammy Faye Bakker at least a month – so for normal folks – it will get you through a year’s time.

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The N Word

27 Jun

Nope, not the n-word you might be thinking of (thanks, Paula Deen).  I’m talking about North, and I don’t mean the term indicating direction or geography.  North, as in the baby born to Kim Kardashian and Kayne West, ya’ll.  I feel like other than E! News, the world has let this recent ridiculous celebrity baby name go relatively unnoticed, and it’s really starting to bother me.  I get that the Paula Deen story is a big deal, but seriously, they named their baby North West.

Since they are actually calling her “Nori” for short (you know, because a shortened name with more syllables than the actual name is normal), I wonder if the name was an ill-fated attempt to get more headlines than the royal baby (since Kimmy K was due in July, the same month as Kate Middleton).

I’ll never understand why celebrities feel the need to name their children stupid names.  Can’t they just pick something normal, like John or Sarah?  Can’t we as a society revoke their baby-naming privileges at some point?  What’s it going to take, America?  A Kayne/Kim second spawn by the name of East?

On This Day

5 Jun

It was brought to my attention by a dear friend that on this day 15 years ago, we graduated high school.  15 years ago.  Sweet Lord.

There are people who loathed high school, but I’m not one of them.  I wouldn’t necessarily go back and do it all over again (curfews, term-papers, tests, peer pressure – no thanks), but I enjoyed my time with the 100 or so classmates in our graduating class, and after being with them since elementary school, “leaving them” on graduation day wasn’t easy.  I cried like a baby after we threw our hats in the air for two reasons:  pride being the first, and sentimental attachment being the other.

When I walked across that stage (on the football field I cheered on every fall Friday night), I recall wondering where we’d all be in 10, 15, or 20 years.  Those numbers seemed like they were so far off…like they’d never arrive.  And here I sit, 15 years later, wondering how time can possibly pass so quickly.

The year after I graduated high school, there was a popular song on the radio called “Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen).”  I haven’t listened to it in 14 years, but today I did, and truer words have probably never been written.  My favorite line?  All of them.

Written by Mary Schmich:

Wear sunscreen.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they’ve faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you’ll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you imagine.

Don’t worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blind sides you at 4 p.m. on some idle Tuesday.

Do one thing every day that scares you.

Sing.

Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts. Don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours.

Floss.

Don’t waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind. The race is long and, in the end, it’s only with yourself.

Remember compliments you receive. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements.

Stretch.

Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don’t.

Get plenty of calcium. Be kind to your knees. You’ll miss them when they’re gone.

Maybe you’ll marry, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll have children, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll divorce at 40, maybe you’ll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don’t congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody else’s.

Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don’t be afraid of it or of what other people think of it. It’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own.

Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.

Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them.

Do not read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly.

Get to know your parents. You never know when they’ll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings. They’re your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.

Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.

Travel.

Accept certain inalienable truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And when you do, you’ll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders.

Respect your elders.

Don’t expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you’ll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out.

Don’t mess too much with your hair or by the time you’re 40 it will look 85.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.

But trust me on the sunscreen.

Southern Manners & Delivery Folks

7 May

I have a habit of making friends with regular delivery (US Mail, UPS, FedEx) people.  Maybe it’s the small-town in me, but I feel compelled to at least give a bright & cheery “hello” when they walk in.  And, what usually begins as a “nice gesture” thing to do eventually gets on my nerves.  I find myself not looking forward to the time(s) when they typically arrive, because, well…I’m going to have to make small talk.

Today’s convo with the UPS man revolved around the possible design of t-shirts (for his side business).  Today’s convo with the mailman involved the 90’s music that was playing in our office.  The FedEx guy just walked in, and after the aforementioned visits…I let someone else greet him.

I think I need to be more NYC and less Georgia around here.

My Not So Gentle Reminder

3 May

Every day now and again, I need a reminder as to why I can’t quit this whole “running” thing.  I’m going to share with you the not-so-gentle-reminder I use:

ImageThank you, Mila Kunis (aka, “Sexiest Woman in the World” by FHM Magazine), for reminding me what perfection looks like.  Now, go eat a gallon of ice cream.  Every hour.  Until I tell you to stop.

Love Story, Volume 4

2 May

Perhaps my favorite (famous) love story of all time is that of Ronald and Nancy Reagan.  From the start of their relationship (when they were both actors), and until the former president died, they were a high-profile couple – and their devotion and immense love for one another was well-documented.  (So much so, that in looking for photographs to use on this post, I would say that they are probably the most photographed couple in the world.  A blessing and a curse, I’m sure.)Ronald_NancyReagan The couple met in 1949, when the only “president” title he held was that of the Screen Actors Guild.  They began courting after meeting, and the pair married in a private ceremony (only two other people were present) in 1952.  For a couple who lived a very public life (from the California Governor’s Office to the White House) they were often described as “intimate” and openly admitted that they weren’t complete without the other one present.

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To the world, he was President Reagan.  To her, he was Ronnie, the partner who wrote her hundreds of letters – some he wrote while she was across the country, some while she was across the room.  In reading a few of them as research for this post, I was struck by how playful, yet sincere their letters to one another were.  It truly seems as if they never stopped courting one another.

From one of his letters to her:

Dear Mrs. Reagan,

Your loving, faithful devotion has been observed these 19 (some say 20) years. There are no words to describe the happiness you have brought to the Gov. It is no secret that he is the most married man in the world and would be totally lost and desolate without you. It seemed to me you should know this and be aware of how essential you are in this man’s life. By his own admission, he is completely in love with you and happier than even a Gov. deserves.

With Love & Appreciation

—Your In Luv Guv.

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I love how the Reagan Foundation’s website describes the couple: “They were always holding hands. Ronald visibly lit up when Nancy entered the room. And then there was the “gaze” – Nancy would look adoringly at her husband when he spoke, seeming to hang on his every word. Their devotion to each other seemed at times too good to be true, and some along the way would doubt their sincerity. But there was nothing disingenuous about the Reagans and their obvious affection for one another. Theirs was a genuine love affair.”

After the attempted assassination of President Reagan in 1981, it is said that Nancy became fiercely protective of her husband – she knew every detail of his schedule and accompanied him as often as possible.  When he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease, she was again his chief protector – never allowing cameras/media to photograph him in his late years.

At Ronald Reagan’s eulogy, President George W. Bush said, “In a life of good fortune, he valued above all the gracious gift of his wife, Nancy. During his career, Ronald Reagan passed through a thousand crowded places; but there was only one person, he said, who could make him lonely by just leaving the room.  America honors you, Nancy, for the loyalty and love you gave this man on a wonderful journey, and to that journey’s end.”

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About Charleston

30 Apr

My upcoming weekend will be spent in beautiful Charleston, South Carolina.  I was raised in a small town, but I consider Charleston where I “literally grew up.”  I went there a naive kid, who hadn’t seen much of the world or met many people different than myself.  I left a well-traveled and open-minded woman, who had just landed a super low paying job in politics.  Charleston taught me many things, including (but not limited to) the appreciation for history and the need to preserve it, that bourbon could fix a bad day, to embrace tourism and the tourists that come along with it, how to parallel park like a pro, what exceptional shrimp and grits taste like, how much I love the ocean and the smell of marsh – and how to walk in heels under any circumstances (cobblestone streets are no joke, y’all).  It’s where I met some of my best friends and made some of my favorite memories.  Every time I return, I am reminded how much it, and the people and experiences that went along with my years there, shaped me.

Pat Conroy wrote my all-time favorite quote about Charleston.  It sums up how those of us that have lived there and since moved will always feel about her.

“Charleston has a landscape that encourages intimacy and partisanship. I have heard it said that an inoculation to the sights and smells of the Carolina lowcountry is an almost irreversible antidote to the charms of other landscapes, other alien geographies. You can be moved profoundly by other vistas, by other oceans, by soaring mountain ranges, but you can never be seduced. You can even forsake the lowcountry, renounce it for other climates, but you can never completely escape the sensuous, semitropical pull of Charleston and her marshes.”
― Pat Conroy, The Lords of Discipline