Tuesday, February 28, 2012

maniCURATIVE: Essie Sew Psyched

It's a new year, and it's about that time I brought you another maniCURATIVE post, and boy am I in LOVE with my newest nail color, Essie's Sew Psyched!!

Described as "a cashmere-soft sage pewter", this color is the perfect shade for me.. it's funky enough to grab my attention, but subtle enough to wear to a job interview without having the interviewer go "What the...!?!?" LOL

I didn't venture away from my usual nail polish regimen, but here's what I used:

Step One: Essie Fill the Gap! Smoothing Base Coat
Step Two: Essie Sew Psyched
Step Three: Seche Vite Dry-Fast Top Coat

The remarkable thing about the results is that these next few pics were snapped a WEEK after initially painting my nails this color!! I was way too lazy to do them over... Yes I know, bad, blogger, bad! LOL

All in all, I think the color is holding up pretty well. And I am SUPER HARD on my nails, between typing and strumming my guitar almost every day!

Sew Psyched, while not being the most lisp-friendly nail color name, (And I do have a lisp, if you haven't noticed from my sporadic You Tube videos!) it certainly gets a thumbs up from yours truly!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Music Therapy with Miss Moon

The greatest loss of time is delay and expectation, which depend upon the future. We let go the present, which we have in our power, and look forward to that which depends upon chance, and so relinquish a certainty for an uncertainty.
~ Seneca

Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.
~ Oprah Winfrey

In the past few weeks, I've touched a bit on what I have been doing with my time since becoming a lady of leisure (translation: unemployed). The job market is iffy at best, which can make job searching a big old drag ... as opposed to the much smaller drag it normally is! LOL

I have chosen to not sit around and wallow and worry that there are not that many promising jobs, and the ones that are promising, haven't responded favorably to my application yet. I have chosen to let go of the fear and the worry and to instead focus my attention on something that will make me a much happier person: getting healthy, and in the process... lose some weight!

In the past few months, I have dramatically altered my diet, and as I've mentioned before, I have started to incorporate some exercise in the routine, by taking hour-long walks everyday. One of the benefits of living in Bed-Stuy is that many of the block are super long, which makes it a nice little work out when circling a block five times. I have expressed a desire to lose 35 pounds by my 35th birthday in November, and I don't know if that is truly a realistic goal, but it would be nice... and since I'm putting it out there, and putting in the work it involves, who knows? I'll just let go, hope for the best, and see what happens... which is, I believe the best way for me to proceed right now. Which leads me to my choice for Music Therapy with Miss Moon today.

I've been all about anthems lately, and I think that this song is the PERFECT one for letting go, mostly because the title and overall theme of the song is "Lettin' Go"! LOL I hope you all will enjoy the amazing Janelle Monáe!!

Oooh! I got a call today, from my job up the block
It was my boss to say, you know we like you a lot
But we dont need you J, you daydream too much,
Well man Im glad yall let me go!

Cause with no 9 to 5, its a brand new day!
My rents due but Imma party any way!
I feel so alive, stress just faded away!
Its time to live my own life!

So, Imma let it go!!!!
Gonna leave my worries behind!
Gotta take control!
I just came to have a good time!
Imma let it go, no time for stress on my mind!
Imma lettin go!!!!! Oooh Im lettin go!

Thats right, left right
Im losing it to music, cameras, bright lights!
Im staying out all night
Dont shove dont fight!
Well make a million memories -- all incredible!
Cause with no 9 to 5 its a brand new day!
Got bills due, but Imma party anyway
I feel so alive! Stress just faded away
Its time I live my own life!

So, Imma let it go!!!!
Gonna leave my worries behind!
Gotta take control!
I just came to have a good time!
Imma let it go, no time for stress on my mind!
Imma lettin go!!!!! Oooh Im lettin go!

(Dance away your rainy days)
Oh! Come on and dance with me right now!
(Just for a little while!)
Hey! Just, for a, just for a little while!
(I know its hot but we gon keep it cool!)
I know its hot yall, aye, but wait a minute, we gon keep it cool!
(One last chance, come on and dance!)
Come on and dance wit me!!!
Im a let it go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Imma let it go!!!!
Gonna leave my worries behind!
Gotta take control!
I just came to have a good time!
Imma let it go, no time for stress on my mind!
Imma lettin go!!!!!

Oh, yeah, alright everybody!
Now, I see yall jammin out there!
But I want yall to do one more thing for me, one more thing!
Now, when I say L-E-T-T-I-N G-O!
I want everybody to repeat after me
On the count of 1-2-3! Unh!!
(L-E-T-T-I-N G-O!!)

Yeah! Come on we gotta let go!
Awww I see ya!
Now we gon break this down --
Like this!
(L-E-T-T-I-N G-O!!)
Clap ya hands! Unh!
(L-E-T-T-I-N G-O!!)
If you wanna dance, Imma make you dance,
If you wanna groove, Imma make you move.

Congratulations to you,
You had to let it go
You finally let it go
Im glad you let it go
Do do do do doo

(*sigh*) Dance.

Congratulations to you
You had to let it go
Im glad you let it go
You finally let it go
Glad you let it go.

You keep dreamin,
Dont let your dreams die,
You know?
Life is not a rehearsal.
You gotta live it out.
You gotta do it baby.
You gotta do what youre gonna do.
Come on, somebodys gotta hear me

I've been thinking about starting a blog series highlighting my get healthy goals and activities, maybe. I would love all the suggestions and tips y'all have to give me as I blog about it, so be on the look out for "Miss Moon Gets Healthy" (I may change the name... it's lame) coming soon to a Miss Moon's Musings near you! LOL

Saturday, February 25, 2012

A Little [MILLIE JACKSON] for a Saturday Night

Yes yes, y'all! It's a Grown Folks Music kinda Saturday Night for yours truly! And it doesn't get much more grown-folksier (yes, I made up that word) than the one, the only, Millie Jackson!!

Millie Jackson is one of those artist that I discover way to dayum late in my life, seriously. I think that when you turn 16, a girl should be given a Millie Jackson "Best Of" C.D.! You will learn everything there is to know about being a woman: the good, the bad, the ugly, and the naughty!! LOL

I hope that you all will enjoy her amazing words of wisdom for couples at a crossroads, "If You're Not Back In Love By Monday"!

And can I please recreate this picture one day, please?!?!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Let's Talk Tresses Friday: What's Your "Go-To" Shampoo?!?!

If my relationship with my hair products were comparable to romantic relationships, I guess you would call me a serial monogamist when it comes to the products I use. I fall in love with a product, use it devotedly for years, get bored and want to move on. Thus is the case with my shampoo!!

After consistently using Mixed Chicks Shampoo for almost two years, and blogging its praises all the while, I've come to a bit of a rut in terms of the product. It still gets the job done, but I'm not insanely crazy about the results anymore. And thus I think it's time for this girl to move on!

So I am seeking your advice, y'all! What is the shampoo you always make sure you have on hand? Are you a poo-bar gal? Are you drug store brands all the way or do you prefer designer suds? Share your favorite brand and why you love it... hook a sistah up?!?!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I Heart Her Hair: Bernadette Peters...

I can almost hear the needle scratch sound effect for many of you who read the title of this post! LOL But let's face it, Broadway Diva Extraordinaire Bernadette Peters has some gorgeous curls and much props to her for not being afraid to show 'em off!! Not many of our white curly girlfriends in the Biz do, which is why I heart her hair!!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I'm REALLY Diggin': My Shade of Brown's Pillow Boxes

Seriously, how excited was I when I learned about My Shade of Brown?!?! The Brooklyn-based company delivers beauty samples specifically for women of color to enjoy and try out once a month in their lovely Pillow Boxes!

For a monthly $10 membership fee (You can also purchase a yearly membership for $110), you'll receive 4 or 5 samples of amazing beauty products tailored to women of color. You'll get anything from foundation to nail polish to try out at home! If you love the samples, you have the opportunity to purchase the full-size version from the My Shade of Brown shop, making the site a one stop source to try awesome beauty products before committing to buy... and for every dollar spent you earn loyalty points! How cool is that?!?? I could not wait until I received my first Pillow Box in the mail!!

And I was not in the least bit disappointed by what I received! I was a like a little kid at Christmas!!! Here's what I got to dig into (From left to right):

Georgia by G and Company Rosemary Luxury Skin Wash: If I could drink this stuff, I would.. it smells fantastic!!!

Big Girl Lip Shine in Blossom: I was bowled over by this shade because it was PERFECT for a sweet pouty lip!!

Pooka Pure and Simple Pomegranate Body Butter: I was super excited to see this product, because I am a huge fan of the women behind this brand, The Pookalitas!! after trying it out, the sample went right into my purse for everyday use!

Lamik True Mineral Powder in Warm Chocolate: I've been DYING to try Mineral Powder, so suffice to say I was like "Yes!!" when I pulled this out of my Pillow Box! Warm Chocolate is unfortunately a little too dark for my complexion, but applying it was a breeze, and I was really excited about the smooth and light coverage! I will be definitely purchasing the Warm Caramel, which I think is a bit closer to my skintone.

Yana Cosmetics Foundation No. 10: A little goes a super long way with this foundation, just a few dabs of the sample was enough for full coverage!! Love it!!

Check out My Shade of Brown at http://www.myshadeofbrown.com/ to get their amazing Pillow Boxes sent to your door!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Bad-ass Bloggers (BaBs): Meet Te-Erika of My Savvy Sisters

It's been awhile since I've featured someone in my Bad-Ass Bloggers series, and I truly think that this remarkable woman is WELL worth the wait!! As publisher of MySavvySisters, Te-Erika is using her blog to motivate and uplift all who visit the site!

Te-Erika, for those unfamiliar with My Savvy Sisters, what do you want people to understand about the blog?

MySavvySisters.Com provides the resources, information and inspiration women need to survive and thrive in life. We profile the most amazing female entrepreneurs we can find and offer content that helps women understand their inner powers. We post news that is relevant to women and editorials that empower women to take action. We also offer survival give-aways that help women pay their rent, buy groceries, gas and other household items. Our blog is the type of place you visit when you need an attitude adjustment because you are feeling overwhelmed by life.

We also offer services like free mentoring, free emotional crisis counseling and we offer a platform for women to promote their individual causes. MySavvySisters.Com is for every woman who desires to stand up and move forward in life.

Last spring, you voluntarily became homeless and chronicled your experience rebuilding your life in your blog (which was covered extensively by The Huffington Post). What would you say was the most powerful life lesson you learned from your experience?

The most powerful life lesson I learned through The Rebuild Your Life Project was that- nothing is permanent. While we are in the midst of our struggle it may seem like we are stuck but we are not. No ending is permanent, no sad occurrence is permanent, no negative state of mind is permanent, unless you want it to be. My time as a homeless woman ended because I desperately wanted it to and I was willing to do the work necessary to make it happen. That is all it takes for any woman to change her situation, she has to have the desire and she has to make the decision to do it. After she does that, the windows of heaven open up and doors fly open to make room for her desire to come to pass.

I cannot imagine what it was like living on the streets for several months. Was there a moment where you felt tremendously low and found yourself lacking the strength to pull yourself up?

The majority of my time homeless was depressing. I put too much on myself by setting out to organize a job fair for homeless women and raise money for a rental assistance grant, not to mention making creative videos to post on youtube and reporting and researching on survival strategies for the homeless lifestyle- all while I was homeless myself. But I always do that, I can't seem to do anything in a small way, that's just how I am.

I will say that those moments of doubt and insecurity and frustration led me to produce a stunning series of videos posted on my youtube channel that speak to rising above the negative mind state that plagues women. Every time I experienced depression or spoke to someone who was hopeless, I immediately turned my brain on to figure out how to climb out of that horrible mental state and I made a video to teach other women the same thing.

Your experiences being homeless was the launching point for the Rebuild Your Life Project, which is an amazing empowerment outreach established to help women. Can you talk a bit about the project,and what it does?

My experience being homeless allowed me to teach women specific, detailed strategies to overcome an extreme loss. My hope is that by watching my videos, any woman who is settling for a less than lackluster lifestyle will be free to move forward knowing that I have just provided the keys to rise above any loss. By watching me lose and rise again, I hope that women will never fear failure again because they know that no matter what comes after taking a risk for their dream lifestyle they can and will rebuild their lives.

How do you hope the project will grow and help improve the lives of women all over?

The Rebuild Your Life Project is backed by my non profit, My Savvy Sisters, Inc. We strive to become the leading resource for the empowerment of women by offering them the financial assistance they need to transition to their next phase in life through rental assistance grants, emergency relocation assistance grants, scholarships and micro loans for women.

I am also moving forward with a jobs initiative to help Americans by asking big businesses to partner with The Rebuild Your Life Project to offer hiring events across the country to help ease the pressure of unemployment. Denny's Restaurants has already partnered with The Rebuild Your Project by organizing a hiring day where they offered a one day session of open interviews to South Florida residents for 14 corporate owed stores. I hope this catches on and other big businesses decide to show their corporate social responsibility by giving back to the communities that have helped them become successful.

To learn more about The Rebuild Your Life Project visit www.therebuildyourlifeproject.org

To learn how to stand up in the face of ANY situation visit www.mysavvysisters.com

Monday, February 20, 2012

Music Therapy with Miss Moon

" When one is pretending the entire body revolts."
~ Anaïs Nin

This week's Music Therapy with Miss Moon song choice has become a sort of anthem for me, and I listen to it constantly. I don't know why it resonates so much for me, except that it serves as a beckoning to my spirit to come out of hiding... to wave my freak flag high in the sky and be unapologetically.... me.

Those of you who follow me on Twitter know that I've been serious about getting healthier: I've dramatically altered my diet, STAY drinking loads of water and not much else(which isn't as hard as it sounds, really!) and I've been walking a few hours a day around my neighborhood. It really started because I was tired of feeling frustrated with the job searching. Instead of sitting around the house feeling sorry for myself, I go outside and walk.... and while walking, this song often motivates me when I find myself tired and feeling like I want to stop.

I hope that my anthem is one that you all will enjoy! Here's I'm a Lady, by the amazing Santigold. And I hope that it inspires you to do all you have your mind made up to do!

Now won't you run and tell your boyfriend
Tell him don't hold his breath for me
I've got some money I was saving
Got some hearts that I'll be breaking
Know someday they'll make a martyr out of me
I know someday they'll make a martyr out of me

She's so fine

And I like sometimes to wave it high
Up where everyone can see
I'm a lady
Got my mind made up
Got my mind made up

I know I spend magic reel it out
Try to hold a light to me
I'm a lady
Got my mind made up
Got my mind made up

I like to watch the way the wind blows
What does it know that I don't yet
Ooh, oh, look so pretty now
You're just so sweet
Let's see how far you can get
See just how far you can get

She's so fine

And I like sometimes to wave it high
Up where everyone can see
I'm a lady
Got my mind made up
Got my mind made up

I know I spend magic reel it out
Try to hold a light to me
I'm a lady
Got my mind made up
Got my mind made up

Dreams are gone
And the dreams are gone
No one said, no
No one said
Make something with what's in your head
And the dreams are gone
And the dreams are gone

Saturday, February 18, 2012

A Little [SQUEEZE] for a Saturday Night

It's another Saturday Night, y'all! Tonight I thought I would share a favorite song of mine. This song is one that I will forget about for months, and then think about it, and proceed to play it on a loop for days at a time!!! I hope you all will enjoy "Tempted" by Squeeze... and those of you who are fans of the film "Reality Bites" will be familiar with this tune!!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Let's Talk Tresses Friday: What #naturalhair stereotype do you wish would die?!?

When you'd ask someone on the street about women with natural hair, many people have a lot of preconceived notions: We're all hippy-dippy, tofu-eating, no shaving, bohemian Earth Mamas....

The reality? Some of us are.... but just some of us. Truth be told, there is not ONE WAY to be natural. Just like there is not one way to be black, or blonde, or redhead, or female!!

What stereotype about women with natural hair needs to be dead and buried?!? Leave a comment and sound off!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Music Therapy with Miss Moon

"If we have been pleased with life, we should not be displeased with death, since it comes from the hand of the same master."
~ Michelangelo

Words cannot express how surreal it feels to know that Whitney Houston has died. I wish I could eloquently write a fitting tribute to the woman whose voice was always there in my life since childhood, but truly... the words escape me. Instead, I will share with you one of my favorite songs of Whitney, a song that a litty bitty Miss Moon used to sing at every talent show or family occasion that required it. The song has a powerful message, one that I wished to God Whitney had taken to heart.

I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children's laughter remind us how we used to be
Everybody searching for a hero
People need someone to look up to
I never found anyone to fulfill my needs
A lonely place to be
So I learned to depend on me

I decided long ago, never to walk in anyone's shadows
If I fail, if I succeed
At least I live as I believe
No matter what they take from me
They can't take away my dignity
Because the greatest love of all
Is happening to me
I found the greatest love of all
Inside of me
The greatest love of all
Is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself
It is the greatest love of all

I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children's laughter remind us how we used to be

I decided long ago, never to walk in anyone's shadows
If I fail, if I succeed
At least I live as I believe
No matter what they take from me
They can't take away my dignity
Because the greatest love of all
Is happening to me
I found the greatest love of all
Inside of me
The greatest love of all
Is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself
It is the greatest love of all

And if by chance, that special place
That you've been dreaming of
Leads you to a lonely place
Find your strength in love

Rest In Peace, Whitney Elizabeth Houston
(August 9, 1963 – February 11, 2012)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

A Little [LADYBUG MECCA] for a Saturday Night

Happy Saturday, all!!! I am chilling at Texture on the Runway, so I wanted to share some good chill music with all of you so that you can have a fabulous Saturday Night... because I am no doubt having a BLAST!!!

I hope you all will enjoy "Dogg Star" by the wonderful Ladybug Mecca!!!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Let's Talk Tresses Friday: How Far Would YOU Go For Hair Growth!?!?

If you are like me, I am sure you have heard the rumors circulating around the interwebs about how topical treatments like Monistat and Neosporin are MIRACLE WORKERS at increasing hair growth. The theory is that because both products contain Miconazole Nitrate, which is an antifungal, applying it to your scalp with improve hair growth.

Okay, is it really all that serious?!?!? I'd love a head of hair like Cree Summer's, but slathering my scalp with cream intended for my no-no parts when I'm feeling "not so fresh"?!?! Eewwwwwww.....

Okay, fess up... have you tried Monistat 7 or Neosporin on your scalp for hair growth? Would you? Let's talk tresses!!!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

I Heart Her Hair: Tempestt Bledsoe

Tempestt Bledsoe, y'all!! She is the second Cosby kid to be featured in the I Heart Her Hair series!!! And I'm not lying when I say I love her natural hair... it suits her so amazingly!!!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

:::drools::: Rashida Jones-style for Plus Size Fashionistas

I have mentioned my love for Rashida Jones' sense of style in the past. When thinking about which celebrity I should look to for this week's post, I pondered why I hadn't given Rashida a shout out in a while.... and I sought to remedy that. Fortunately for me, I did not have to look long for the outfit to recreate!!!

Seriously, how cute is this outfit?!?!? Most times when putting together outfits for these posts, I pick outfits I would LOVE to wear... but most likely wouldn't. This is not the case for this look... I would TOTALLY wear this outfit on the weekends, if I was going someplace I need to look very cute at. Here's what I came up with:

Top: Grey Floral Shirt ($49.50, Evans USA)
Jeans: Women's Plus Dark-Wash Skinny Jeans ($39.94, Old Navy)
Boots: Kensie Girl Ranella ($57.99, Zappo's)
Clutch: Glamour Pearl Clutch Bag ($14.80, Forever 21)
Necklace: Long Pearl Necklace ($59.95, Coldwater Creek)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Music Therapy with Miss Moon

" I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."
~ Nelson Mandela

Happy Monday, everybody! This week's Music Therapy with Miss Moon song choice comes from a play I was fortunate to go see a few weeks ago!

When I discovered that Adam Pascal was starring in the Broadway musical "Memphis", I knew I had to go, and as an after-Christmas present to myself, I bought a pretty damn good ticket to go see the show (I was four rows from the stage.... Oh yeah, boss shyte!). Keep in mind I had a small idea of what the play was about, and was very unfamiliar with the songs.

Why did I choose to go when I was newly unemployed and had not a lot of money to spend on frivolities like theatre tickets? Huddle up, y'all... and I will dish: it's... the VOICE. That man's voice is BANANAS!!!

It doesn't hurt that he's cute, too! LOL

But I digress... I ended up falling in LOVE, LOVE, LOVE with the play! So much so, that I've been watching the DVD of the Original Broadway Cast constantly on Netflix (It's streaming, so check it out!). Chad Kimball, who originated the roll of Huey Calhoun is also pretty damn adorable, too.... And Lord LOVE Montego Glover!!! One of my favorite songs from the musical is one that resonates so strongly with me, as I am sure it will for many of you that read these words. Which is precisely why I chose it for this week's song. It's one that women in 2012 can empathize with, though its being sung by someone living in the 50s... I know I've felt this way before!

Sung by the GLORIOUS Montego Glover (I have a decent singing voice, but I would do a Little Mermaid type deal for her's in a heart beat!)....I hope you all will enjoy the beautiful and powerful, "Colored Woman".

Some got chances, some got choices,
Some got freedom in these states.
Colored women got few chances,
Got few choices on our plates.

Mama told me there are limits
For dark-skinned girls stuck in this light-skinned world.
Once in a while I lose myself in dreams-
A silly girl full of silly schemes.

Now along comes a man whose skin is white and pale,
A shiny fool full of shiny tales.
He says he'll make the people hear me.
He'll force this world to fin'ly see me.
Is he a lie like ev'ry other man
Or Lord could he somehow,
Could he somehow,
Could he somehow help to free me?

Mama told me not to dream big,
But Mama lived her life running scared.
I am stronger and I'll fight longer!
I'll do what Mama never even dared!

Colored women with few chances,
Has to do what she must do!
I will make my colored dreams come true!
For this is one colored woman who will color
Her life...
Her way.

If you are in NYC or plan on visiting in the near future, make sure you go see "Memphis". For tickets, visit http://www.memphisthemusical.com/. I will definitely be seeing this play again in the upcoming months!!!