.As a writer, burning the midnight oil, as I'm doing now, is the norm. I needed a a fridge of some sort in my office for these late nights and thanks to @NewAirUSA--problem solved. There are all makes and models available, but what separates this product from other coolers/refrigerators is the sleek finish, portability and split shelf design.
The model I received holds up to 126 cans/bottles of your beverage of choice and the lower compartment can easily hold milk and other food items I really like the sleek, stainless finish and the customized temperature control is perfection. As if that weren't enough, there's even a LED light inside, so you can see what you want, without rummaging and moving things around. Thank you New Air for the opportunity to test and review. You've outdone yourself this time. You can check out more amazing products from the New Air line, or just purchase the cooler here www.newair.com
Gorgeous!! Taraji P. Henson(Cookie forever) graces the cover of InStyle Magazine's January 2019 cover--channeling Mary Tyler Moore. Strong, beautiful, savvy--love,love, love this lady. Everybody knows "Cookie" and while it may seem like Taraji's star miraculously appeared--make no mistake of the arduous journey.
Taraji was a college graduate( Howard University) and single mom with aspirations of becoming Hollywood's next leading lady. Sounds familiar but Ms. Henson had a plan. I won;t give away the article, you can read all about her journey to the top for yourslef, but did you know Taraji worked at the Pentagon before landing in Hollywood? Yep--brains and beauty. 20 years, countless leading roles and counting, I'd say she made it!!
Family, holidays and stress seem to go hand in hand. Most of us that host loved ones this time of year find ourselves in a frenzied overworked, exhausted and run-down state before, during and after the holidays, needing a separate holiday to recover after everyone's gone. A few years ago I decided that was the last time I allowed anyone or anything to disrupt my favorite time of year.
Having a chronic illness is challenging enough and any sufferer will tell you the overstimulating of the nervous system i.e stress, is the absolute last thing we need. Living with physical pain on a daily basis is hard enough without any additional help, yet I found myself really losing over holiday visitors and guests.
Trying to prepare meals, accomodate the needs of all my guests--food, sleeping, entertainment etc, all while caring for Noni and shuffling to and from the doctor left me feeling empty and exhausted. I was beginning to dread what has always been my favorite time of year. I was physically sick and had zero joy to the point I almost didn't even bother with a Christmas tree that year. Can you imagine? I am the self proclaimed Queen of Christmas and decorating felt like more of a chore than merriment. After my company cleared out, I began working(very slowly) on my vision board for the next year and decided I needed to make some serious adjustments. Every set of circumstances are of course different, but here are some healthy changes I made to reclaim my mental, and physical well being and hopefully you can too.
1) Remember the Reason--Being of Christian faith, the birth of Christ and what that means to me personally is the real joy of the season. I had to take a "time out" and remind myself of the real reason for the season and what I was celebrating. Refocusing on the center of my holiday joy was paramount and helped me release a great deal of anxiety.
2)Put Yourself First-- This one is hard I know, especially if you're hosting family but is absolutely necessary. Whatever you need to do for yourself to feel relaxed and in a good mental and emotional space--do it. Example: Suppose it's been a rocky few weeks and you just don;t feel up to accommodating a house full of people--then don't. Speak up and be honest with your family/friends. Hold your holiday festivities at another relatives home or instead of cooking, make plan ahead of time(ie. now) to meet up at your favorite restaurant instead.
3) Ask for Help- If you decide you want to have company over, don;t be afraid to ask them to bring something( they really should anyway--manners people). Pot luck may not be your first choice, but perhaps one could pick up a dessert and the other some wine--whatever--delegate so you;re not running around driving yourslef nuts. If you need help, ask for it.
4) Hotel vs Home- This one is a biggie and can cause pure chaos, but if you just aren't in the spirit this year of de-cluttering, cleaning and turning your guest bedroom into a House Beautiful moment, let them get a hotel. There;s only so much one person can do, and if you're not up to the task of turning your home into the weekend B& B, kindly suggest a hotel nearby or possibly another family member. Trust me, letting people bear some of the responsibility for their own vacation/holiday plans will add years to your lifespan.
At the end of the day, you can;t give to others in any manner until you have first taken care of yourself, which is often a challenge-BUT is very necessary. Talk candidly to your loved ones if you're feeling overwhelmed. The holidays are a time to celebrate, rejoice and reflect--not stress out. Stay calm, breathe and know that everything will be ok.
Living in the age of "Influencer Marketing" has seen unknown indie brands skyrocket-- becoming a household name, while others have seemingly lost steam and faded into obscurity. I don't know what discount footwear retailer Payless Shoes' motives were when they decided to prank shoppers by opening a completely faux(fake) shoe store, stocked with Payless shoes, and marking them up by as much as 1800%.
They seem to be getting the last laugh calling this a social experiment, studying what people will pay for, but I'm not at all convinced. As a self proclaimed fashion addict and Lifestyle blogger, testing, rating and reviewing products comes with the territory. Like many women I've enjoyed shopping since I was a toddler, and trust me there's no way you're going to convince a lifelong shopper and Lifestyle writer that a product retailing for $30 is actually worth $600 plus. No way, absolutely not, do not believe the hype.
There's absolutely nothing wrong with finding affordable apparel options, but trying to convince consumers that chosen "Infuencers" couldn't recognize the difference in the quality and craftsmanship of products from $30 to $600 equates to not knowing the difference between a knit dress from FashionNova vs St. John Knitwear. Seriously??
Undoubtedly, some products have proven to be more about hype and popularity vs quality, but I hold to the adage you get hat you pay for. I love a discount and sale just as much as the next shopper, but some things are mere nonsense and this is one of them. I've never shopped at Payless myself, so I can't speak to the quality or lack thereof of the retailer's offerings. I can say that this little PR stunt piqued my interest enough to visit their social media. To their credit, the pics are good, especially of the warm fuzzy boots/booties. Looks cozy. Nonetheless, I don't know if this was the best effort if their seeking sales. I'm not impressed. I think hosting an event, being honest upfront-- about their desire to reach a different demographic and getting some honest feedback would have been a better route., and a better look.
Anywho, good luck Payless. I hope for your sake your experiment paid off. Happy Holidays ;0
Happy Thanksgiving angels!!! Tomorrow is the annual Macy's Thanksgiving parade, one that I rarely miss( from my couch that is). For many of us this parade is the official kick off to the Christmas holiday season. Looking at the weather report, it is going to be a bone chilling 20 degrees with a single digit windshield factor in the Big Apple-Yikes!! A blast of cold air is gifting the North East with the coldest Thanksgiving on record--some 15 to 30 degrees lower than usual.
Temperatures this low aren't just cold, they're physically dangerous. So, before you head out to take in the sights and see those amazing Thanksgiving day floats--fingers crossed the wind cooperates--here's a quick overview of how to properly layer--fashionably of course ;0
1) Base Layer-- This may seem like a no brainer, but you may be surprised how many people neglect to wear a solid base layer. Some just chose not to, others may be visiting from warmer climates and just not know. There are no shortage of options of materials, styles and colors, but in general--just grab a cozy pair of thermals. This layer is closest to your skin and wicks off the sweat, while retaining body heat My personal favorite are from Cuddl Duds. You can pic order a pair online( www.cuddlduds.com) or from your local Target or JCPenney.
2) Middle Layer- Your second layer insulates. I prefer something in fleece or with fleece for this layer. Fleece is not only warm and cozy, but it keeps you warm, even when wet. This one is from St John's Bay( LOVE this line) looks so warm & cozy ( www.jcpenney.com) and it's on sale!
3) Outer layer- Last but not least your coat. For temps this low a heavyweight puffer would definitely be my choice. For temps this low, I absolutely prefer a longer coat--anything to keep as much warmth as possible. This knee length , heavyweight from St. John's Bay is a keeper.
These are your three basic layers, but don't forget the accessories. A good pair of thermal crew socks, wool gloves, and a hat that provides coverage to your ears as well are a definite must. Stay warm, be safe and have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.