Brown Paper Packages Tied-up w/ String...

So the Christmas season is upon us and I have begun my shopping. I always get a little sad when Christmas shopping because I always see great men's gifts with no one besides my Daddy to give them to. I've already hooked Dad up with a fly ass wool 3 button Ralph Lauren Top Coat. Now if only I had a stocking to fill for someone special...

I think I have a talent for gift giving. It's one of my favorite things to do. To me it's the best part of Christmas (yes even better than receiving). There's nothing more awesome to see someones face light all up and knowing that you put that glow there.

Since I don't have anyone significant to lavish upon, I figured I'd put together a quick guide to some of my favorite gift ideas for those who are gifting challenged:

To me the key to successful gift selection is honing on the things your boo loves then most and then finding the best whatever that is... here are some examples -

Hood men -
Does your sweetie rock a hoodie 24/7, 365? Is he the type that will throw on a hoodie over his dress shirt? Why not take him to the next level w/ this:

Juicy Couture Reversible Fleece and Rabbit Fur Hoody - $675

Walk Softly (but carry a big stick) -
I'm a big fan of slippers and I know quite a few men who are too. There's nothing like rolling through the grocery store in sweats and slippers. My philosophy is that if they didn't intend for you to wear them outdoors, then they wouldn't have put rubber tread on the bottoms. If your honey's pair are looking raggedy around the edges, treat his tootsies to an upgrade:
Sampson Slipper by Ugg - $104

or if he has the swag to pull it off, opt for these:

Stubbs & Wootton Slippers - $350

Legalize it -
If you boo likes to take a toke, instead of a Zippo lighter that he's likely to loose, opt for these:

For Your Party Monogram Matches - $48/Set of 50

Stuntin is a Habit - Are you dating a brotha that stays dapper. Trump that tie clip he bought himself and they cuff links you picked up for his birthday by dazzling him with these pimpish male furnishings:

Tateossian Mother of Pearl Collar Stays - $48/pair

Gym Rat -
Are you dating a muscle man who lives in the gym? Does his body look great but his gym bag looks like he'd been using it as a punching bag? Do you just have a bunch of extra cash lying around? Then this gift is for you (for him):

Marc Jacobs Luxe Gym Bag - $850

Protect Yo Paper -
I had a Black man explain to me recently that men (or at least Black men) are impervious to water (this was after I inquired as to why he was walking out in the rain w/ no umbrella and why he refused to stand under mine). While he maybe be waterproof, I'm pretty sure his canvas messenger bag was not. If you're dating Aqua Man, get him some waterproof gear to go with his natural suit of armor:

SealLine Urban Bag - $149.95

I have more where this came from... check back for updates throughout the shopping season!! :o)


Curl Up With a Good Movie?!...

There are some movies that just speak to me...

Today I called in sick and spent then day in the house.  I just needed a "me" day.  It's been so long since I've watched my soaps that I struggled to really pay attention.  I decided to curl up under the covers and pop in a good movie.  I've been feeling lonely lately.  Something about the winter always makes me wish I had someone to cuddle up with.  Since I've been feeling less than optimistic about my love life I figured I'd watch my two favorite movies about love:

Kama Sutra:  A Tale of Love
This is a movie about a woman and her journey to find what love is and isn't.  It's also about the haves and the have nots.  Yes, it's sexy and there's plenty of T&A, but if you can look past the jiggly things on the screen there's a really touching story there.  Every time I watch it I end up balling my eyes out at the end but it's dear to my heart and I could watch it over and over again.

One my favorite quotes is from this film - "Knowing love, I can allow all things to come and go, to be as supple as the wind and to face all things with great courage. My heart is as open as the sky..."

Here's a peek:

the other movie I watched was...

Secretary -
This is a super dysfunctional love story that proves there's someone out there for everybody.  Yes it's dark, yes it's deviant, but I absolutely think it's one of the most romantic movies I've ever seen (<---- that statement, once you've seen the movie, may make you think I'm nuts but I don't care).  I think everyone wants to be accepted, flaws and all, and there's a great quote from this movie that embodies that - 

"Each cut, 
each scar, 
each burn...
A different mood or time.
I told him what the first one was,
told him where the second one came from.
I remembered them all...

And for the first time, I felt... beautiful,
finally part of the earth.
I touched the soil,
and he loved me back"

Take a gander at the opening (what?!, I said it was deviant):


Security Stick

I woke up this morning after I rather restless sleep.  I tossed and turned so much that I made a big rip in my 800tc (that stand for threat count for those not in the know) sheets.

me = pissed about it... guess I know what I'll be buying on payday ::sigh::

Anywho, my restless night reminded me of one of my good friends and her need/want of a security stick and how I too would like one.

So, I'm sure you're wondering what in the world a security stick is...


Some people have security blankets, actual ones and other things that make them feel safe, like a crusty ass one-eyed teddy bear they've had since child hood, or a blankey, I have one friend who sleeps with a bible under her pillow.  Well a security stick would be that nice one between your man's legs, planted firmly against your back at night.

I know... go ahead and giggle, but it's true.  Something about log lump laying snugly behind you as you slumber just makes you sleep tight, and there's nothing that is really a good substitute.

Like my girl said "there's nothing going to bed with a dick on your back."

Quote it!

Primpin' Ain't Easy...

(was supposed to post this last week but got sidetracked by the election... Enjoy!)

I'm a woman who's always taken her beauty routine seriously.  My mother was a cosmetologist and stressed the importance of skin care and presentation.  I noted in college how my daily routine had upgraded since high school, and now as I approach 30 in a few years, it seems things have advanced yet again. 

In high school I used to frustrate my mother daily.  I was a get up and go girl.  I'd jump in the shower 20mins before the bus was due to arrive.  I'd brush my teeth in the shower to save time, dry off, throw on lotion and deodorant, throw on clothes and comb my hair down on the way to the bus.  Hell, some mornings I'd keep on my scarf and just put a hat on and then do my hair on the way to school.  I recall the younger girls on the bus who were very impressed at my ability to do my make-up on the bus.  Despite all the rocking and bumps in the road I was able to line my eyes w/o stabbing myself in the cornea.  By the I reached home room I was ready to go.

In college this became more of a chore...  I went to school in the frozen tundra of Central New York.  This changed the game completely...  Throwing on lotion in the morning was no longer an option.  First I had to have a shower gel that was moisturizing.  Now I always used Dove.  Just plain ole soap was a no-no in my house.  One, cause my skin is sensitive and I'd break out in to a terrible rash, and two my skin would look like cracked earth in about 30 seconds.  In college we had such hard water that Dove was not gonna cut it.  I remember going through all types of changes.  Also, men were really a factor.  In high school I could care less about the nuccas at my hood ass school, but college was different.  I really got into the scented Vikki's shower gel and the body mist sprays and all that crap.  Then I had to give myself at least 20mins to lotion up.  We were strictly a Nivea household in college and that shit is like impossible to rub in, but at least you would be ashy when your skin met the Arctic winds outside.

In college  there was also so much more preparation for going out.  Ugh... shaving... everywhere... eyebrow plucking, make-up, hair... it would take me at least 90mins to get ready to go out.  Also, being on a college budget meant doing it yourself.  So hair had to be done at home.  Eyebrows... better get a good pair of tweezers and sit reallly close to the mirror.  Make-up was usually the best of Wet N' Wild (for the men out there that's the cheapest shit they got at CVS),  with maybe one MAC lipstick thrown in the mix.  It was tough goings, but we worked it out.

Now I'm an adult... I have a job... and I'm getting older.  I wish I could find someone to shake bones over my face like Oprah does but so far I've had to put it all together myself...

Let's start from the beginning... showering.

Now as I've said, I've always been a Dove girl and now that I live in a place with normal temperatures I have been able to return to plain old Dove, but... a shower puff ain't gettin it no more.  If I want to skin to glow I have to exfoliate.  So I have special exfoliating gloves that I use daily.  If I had the money I'd get my Carol's Daughter on and have my Jamaican Punch Body Scrub on the ledge in the bathroom, but that shit is like $30 a jar and goes in about 2 weeks (if that).  We ain't ballin like that yet son... so the gloves will have to do.  They're a great solution but hard as hell to find.

Shaving... ugh.  until I get some more cash flow I'll be shaving my legs until I die I guess.  A BIC razor isn't gonna do it.  About 5 years ago God blessed us with the Venus razor.  I mean it truly changed my life.  I haven't cut myself shaving in years (knock on wood).  But they keep making upgrades and now it's kinda out of control.  I used the Venus razor with the moisture strip and the shaving gel built in.  It saves me time, but DAMN THAT SHIT IS EXPENSIVE!!!  Last time I checked razor refills are like $13 for 4.  WHAT THE FUCK!?!?  My sister and I go 1/2 on a pack.  For Christmas I might ask for that $40 multipack from Costco.  It's such a good deal but damn that seems like a lot to spend on razors.  ::sigh::

Now that I'm out the shower I must hurry and throw on some body oil.  I have about 60 seconds before my face gets dry so I must get to the sink to start my face routine, but by the time I'm done and go to put on lotion the skin on my legs will crack if I don't do something quick so I rub on some almond oil ($10) to give me a few extra minutes.

Okay so now it's time for the face.  Ugh.  So I've always struggled with acne.  I have great skin but it's sensitive as hell.  I've done the dermatologist stuff, I did proactive, Murad.  Been there, done that.  I went for a facial recently ::pause:: and the woman told me I can't use chemicals on my face.  Now she's not the first person to tell me that but I like chemicals cause they work fast.  She also told me that I have to start using an eye cream.  REALLY?!?!  But I don't have any fine lines or crows feet?!?!  Apparently to keep it that way I have to start using an eye cream now... great, more shit and more $$$  So she sold me on this whole organic line of skincare shit.  I actually really like it, but since there's no chemicals I have to use it more often.  So I have a cleanser ($25) , then an exfoliating scrub ($26) every morning, followed by this under eye roller thing ($15) to prevent dark circles and puffiness, and I top it off ::double pause:: with my Oil of Olay ($12) with SPF (my mother swore by it and so do I).  That's not that bad, but then I have to rinse and repeat in the evenings and then put on a hydrating night lotion ($32) and I have a deep cleansing mask ($30) I have to use once every two weeks.  I also should go in for a facial ($80) every two months.  Yeah, that shit adds up.  I'm hoping all of said products will last for at least 4 months.

While I'm at the sink I might as well brush my teeth now.  I have sensitive teeth as well so I must brush with warm water.  I use the Colgate all in one with the tarter control, the stuff that makes your teeth less sensitive and mouth wash and breath strips all in one bottle ($4.50).  It's great, I've been using it since undergrad, no complaints.

Okay now to the couch to lotion up.  In a perfect world I'd be putting on my Carol's Daughter Shea Butter Body Souffle ($35), or some pure Shea Butter from the health food store ($18) but in this economy I've settled for Vaseline Intensive Care Cocoa and Shea Butter Body Cream ($12) or the lotion ($9) which ever is on sale.  I've said good-bye to body mists and scented lotions cause i'm tired of every heifer on the street smelling like me.  I've moved on to Fine Fragrances.  Now once again in a perfect world I'd have my Bond No. 9 Nuits de Noho ($180) but I'll settle for Delices de Cartier ($65) in the spring/summer and Tom Ford's Black Orchid ($60...down from $120 woooohooo!!!) in the fall/winter.

Okay now I can get dressed.  We won't even get into how expensive all of the undergarments are or the clothes cause that's a whole nother blog.  But let's do a review of some of the other shit I didn't mention...

Waxing... Now I'm not a fan of a ton of hair below the belt... for me or him.  Actually I'm all about a man who parts with his pubes, but as long as it's well groomed I'm down ::pause::  As for me I prefer enough hair to feel like I'm an adult but not much more.  I don't like the landing strip or the Hitler as me and my friends refer to it.  A mid-sized triangle will do (is this TMI?!?!  Oh well...)  So I guess we'll call it a modified brazilian.  Now you can do it yourself or pay to have it done.  I've done both.  It's kind of a toss up.  If I do it I can get a kit for $12-15 but it'll take like 2-3 hours.  If I got to the spa it'll cost $40 but take 15mins or less.  So, it all depends on what the budget is, however it's a much better option than shaving.  Less bumps, less itchy and it lasts much longer.

Eyebrows... gone are the days of plucking at home.  Thank you Shiva for threading.  There is a wonderful indian woman on my way home from work who's started up a threading place in DC.  It's $12, not quite as cheap as the $8 I pay in NYC, but it's still worth it.  It's quick, easy, almost painless and much more exact than waxing which I've never been a fan of and grows back slower than a razor cut.

Hair care... ugh... I hate how much haircare costs.  Be you permed or natural, it all costs money.  I went back to a perm because it's less time consuming (though I miss my fro... maybe when I'm making a bit more $$$ I'll grow it out again).  $75+ tip for a touch-up, wrap, and curl.  That's about a monthly expense.

I'm done... I can't even get into make-up.  This shit is getting expensive.  My pockets hurt!!