Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Boredom....What To Do????

I swear this is how my toddler feels right now. I don't know what to do. He is bored out of his mind with our normal activities and since I am not the most creative person/mommy in the world, I'm having a hard time coming up with alternative activities.

Its hot. I mean REALLY hot, so hanging outside at the pool or at the zoo is out of the question since my 5 month old can't be in the sun during peak temperatures. We usually go to the pool after my hubby gets home from work. By this time, the temperature is like 90 degrees instead of 100, ha ha!

I'm running out of activities to do with my oldest boy. I want to do something fun where we both can get out of our same old routine everyday. Our normal routine of flash cards, books and play time with toys is better when its done 3 days out of the 5-day work week. Now, I need something new to fulfill the other 2 days.

Any ideas???? What kinds of activities do you do with your little one(s) everyday?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

My Natural Hair Journey

Here are some pictures that outline the progress I have made in my natural hair growth journey.

Straightened Hair

My relaxed hair: Last relaxer was February 2009.

Post Big Chop - I freaked and got it straightened ASAP.

December 2010

May 2011 - a bit uneven but I'm not due for a trim yet.

I'm in love with the bob haircut, but I'm ready for long and luscious hair. When chemically relaxed, my hair never reached past my collarbone.Currently, I consider it to be arm pit length.

'Wet' Hair

Post Big Chop - Wash 'n go: March 2010

Wash 'n go: May 2011 - still wet.

Wash 'n go: May 2011 - fully dry w/ shrinkage.

Only Herbal Essences Hello Hydration was used immediately after my Big Chop in the first  wash 'n go picture. Coconut oil and Eco-Styler gel were used in the last two wash 'n go pictures with no leave-in conditioner. What has really helped me with retaining length has been moisture-drenching, deep conditioning and very little direct heat usage.

I had a small setback in December 2010, where I trimmed off 2" all because what I thought were shabby ends were actually my coils that were flattened by the flat iron instead of straightened. Then I learned about the comb-chase method. My hair would be 2" longer than it is now if I'd have known about how to trim properly. Oh well, you live and learn.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Marble Slab Ice Cream & Red Lips

The guilty pleasure that I will be indulging in this weekend is none other than, some form of chocolate!!!! tee hee hee. I hadn't heard of Marble Slab 'til we moved to Texas. This place puts Cold Stone and Sheridan's to shame! Even Baskin Robbins is getting the side-eye from me!

Best ice cream made fresh daily!

Okay, by now you can tell that I am addicted to chocolate. But pre-baby, I had some standards, i.e. no Chips Ahoy, but anywho my favorite at Marble Slab is the Amaretto flavored ice cream with Heath bar mix-ins. The flavor special that they are running right now is Chocolate Coconut Rum!!!!! Hmmmmm mmmmmmmmmmm!!!!!! Perfect when outside in this HEAT!
Enjoy the weekend, stay cool and indulge in something sweet!


Mommy's getting her groove back with Sephora Red!


Plain jane...

Then pow! Red hawt!

Headed to the pool!

What's your favorite dessert to cool down with in this HEAT? What's your favorite ice cream [flavor] place? 

How are did you get your groove back this week or this weekend?!?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Chips Ahoy Chocolate Chip Cookies are Evil

Seriously....its really not fair. Every time I see you, I can't help myself. You're definitely no good for me. Hell, before my second baby, I didn't even like you! I don't even know if I liked you when I was pregnant. So, why is it that I can't seem to escape your hold over me! Sigh.....I thought I could blame post-postpartum hormones, but that was about 3 months ago. Who/what can I blame this on now? You're preventing me from losing this pooch! Oh well, now that I've had the last of this batch, I promise I won't get another bag.......just as long as I never set foot in a grocery store for a month. Looks like the hubby will have to do all of the shopping. Between you and the healthy bananas on the counter, I can't help but open your resealable pouch....
These used to be my hubby's favorite cookies and then once our second boy was born, I found myself eating all of his cookies. See, that's what pregnancy does, it causes you to like food your husband/kid(s) dad likes even if you never liked it pre-pregnancy! 

Hair and Lipstick fun:
I've gotten rather plain post-college, but ESPECIALLY post-babies, but I plan to get my fabulousness back one step at a time. 

This was $12!
I originally bought the $20 one by Make up Forever and my friend made fun of me saying the Sephora brand was just as good. Well, she was absolutely right because I ended up liking this one much better color-wise anyway!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Henna & Clutches

My Clutch Crush

While getting some items at Target last Friday, I came across a couple cute knick knacks and one included my new little clutch. I saw several clutches that I liked and will be going back for. I'm really into clutches now because when carrying two diaper bags around (or in the stroller), I just don't have the patience or desire to carry around my former cute fashionable purses. So for now, they're on hold and I'm turning up my love for clutches. The one I bought was $9.99, big enough for my wallet, keys, lip gloss, gum, cell phone and compact mirror....without making it bulky. What really got me though, is the silver circle that acts as a handle. I can slip my forearm through and carry it, while still holding my boys, their bags or even grocery bags without dealing with it sliding off of my shoulder. Don't you just hate when your purse slides off your shoulder while your carrying something heavy?!? I hate that!

Texture Manipulation???  

I hate to say this but....I think I will be henna'ing more often, solely for the purpose of [slightly] loosening up the texture in the middle of my head. I've tried all kinds of methods suggested for avoiding tangles and knots and I just don't know how to handle the tighter coils of my crown. The front of my head is so loose in texture, that its wavy and the crown/back is so extra tight. I hate snipping random knots out. I may be hopeful to the extent of naive, but I'm hoping a little loosening of the texture will help me minimize, and.......dare I say it, prevent these little knots from continuing to form. My only dilemma is how the heck do I continue my curl loosening when I have new growth without the previously loosened part ending up curl-less? Sigh.....I give up. Back to the drawing board? No....I'm definitely going to try this henna thing.

Henna is an ALL NATURAL great conditioning/strengthening treatment for ALL hair types and is a nice red rinse (color effect) that can really only be seen in the sunlight, if your hair is naturally black.....any other colors like blond or gray then your head is turning coppery-red. And I love the color red. :-) To see how henna changes the color of a natural blond, go here. For women with ethnic hair, the color change isn't as vibrant, but if you're coloring gray you end up with copper highlights in black hair which is totally cute. My mom loves it now!

I have tried henna once as an overnight and another time as a gloss - meaning mixed with a conditioner and left on for only 3-4 hours. Both times, it was right after I had cut off my relaxed ends. I've only done it twice in the past year, mainly because I didn't want it to loosen my coils (not because of the crazy need to prove ethnic hair is beautiful and blah blah blah, only because I liked my coily texture). I know my change of heart is crazy, right? Not to mention, I just don't have that kind of time to devote to my hair since I'm a mommy of two adorably demanding boys! I really like my curls (but have seen henna's curl loosening powers when used on a very regular basis), but as it gets longer, its becomes more difficult to keep these knots at bay! I plan to place my order and hopefully receive the henna next week. My plan and challenge is to do a henna gloss once a month, starting next week or so. I may have to push this start date back to the beginning of July. I will be ordering my BAQ, body art quality - foil pouch only henna from here. Its on sale for $5.50 from $6.99, so I'll be ordering today!

Right after my BC, I did a henna gloss and check out the curls I had popping and bouncing everywhere! My tighter coily curls afre the diameter of a Bic pen.

Picture taken immediately upon rinsing.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Facebook 'Enemies' as Friends???

Do you have friends on facebook that you wish you never would have friended? If so, what did you do? Un-friend them or keep them? I have several facebook friends that I wish I could delete but I don't have the courage to. With my normally fiesty exterior, this seems like a no-brainer but I'm having a little turmoil with this issue. I really want to un-friend my ex-boyrfriend and some of his female friends (that were once mine but turned on me once I got with my current husband). This all happened a little over 10 years ago by the way. Does it sound like I'm holding onto any anger, lol? Ok, really I'm not.....let me explain.

I'm from a town where "everybody knows your name," okay not everybody, but at least 50+ former high school classmates, older and younger that were in the 'popular' crowd knows your name and try to continue high school social drama for 10 years off and on. I'm currently trying to escape this instead of my usual "act like its not happening, and still be friendly" attitude. After pushing out my second boy, I have taken on the role of Jim Carrey in that movie, "Liar Liar," and I now have a hard time lying, i.e. being nice to those who were once mean and/or gossipy to and about me. Of course, these mean ones want to become your 'friend' again once you have kids.!? Okay, well I also forgot to mention that these girls are wives and friends to a couple of my hubby's close friends. To me, it used to say a lot about his friends' character, but after awhile I started to notice that they were the type of men who ignored their loud and obnoxious wives as well as ignored how their wives treated people. That's all fine and dandy.....but I live in what you call the real world and that type of behavior is not acceptable or forgivable. Its just gross.....and I'm not that desperate for friends.

I want to get rid of my ex-boyfriend on there because.....well, why not. We're not friends or even friendly. He's friendly with my husband, but that's because most men are not petty like some women can be. Anywho, we don't really converse on there at all, soooooo..........why is he my friend? He added me (just like those 30-yr old female fake bullies mentioned above) and I accepted/confirmed them just to keep 'peace.' Peace being not giving them something to talk about, but now I'm realizing people are going to do that regardless. I also accepted their friendships because I didn't want it to seem like I had any negative feelings or past angers still unresolved. I'm happily married, trust me and I couldn't care less about my ex.................well, actually a friend and sorority sister of mine said it best in her status the other day, "I saw my ex and he's gained weight....its the little things!" I love it and no harm done, just a little extra weight to shrinken their ginormous, "I'm the man" ego.I would just rather have a lot of facebook 'friends' that I have fun with and/or have no ill will/feelings toward me (even if I don't know them very well), than have 'friends' I've known for years and have gossiped about me for just under a decade. I don't want to stir drama, I just want to live reality, and in reality we do not see each other and smile, so why make nice on facebook?

Now I just have to find some courage, although I could totally be opening a can of worms for myself. I'm off to watch the Wizard Of Oz......

What do you think I should do? Delete them or continue to ignore their presence in my friends list?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!!!!

"It is easier for a father to have children than for children to have a real father."
~Pope John XXIII

Friday, June 17, 2011

Grilled Chicken in Garlic Cream Sauce

Grilled Chicken in Garlic Cream Sauce

Last night, we had grilled chicken over angel hair pasta, with a side of broccoli and a dinner roll. Yum! This meal is pretty quick to prepare which is always good if you are a multi-tasker and always busy or if you have little ones to keep occupied. I didn't cook all of this at one time. I waited an hour between cooking the sauce and chicken because I was doing other stuff and the hubby was working a little later than usual so I didn't need to rush.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F
-In a small saucepan pot on medium-high heat, pour in 1.5 pints of heavy whipping cream
-Add 2 tablespoons of butter and stir until melted
-Add 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
-Add 2/3 teaspoon of natural sea salt
-Add 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
-Add 1/2 teaspoon of parsley flakes
-Add 2 shakes of sage
-Let come to a boil, while stirring occasionally
-After it has started boiling, add in 2 oz. of plain cream cheese, you may want to add it in small chunks
(The ounces are measured on the side of the cream cheese wrapper)
-Continue to stir until the cream cheese has melted. Smudge some of the cream cheese along the edges of the pot to help it melt.
-Touch your finger on the spoon to taste. If it seems a tiny bit bland, that okay because it will mix with the chicken, which already has salt on it. But if its too bland for you, add a couple more shakes of salt.

While your sauce is cooking, cook your chicken breasts.
-Pan fry two ginormous chicken breasts coated in your favorite seasonings. I always use Cajun Seasoning and pepper and cook in a skillet with 2 capfuls of olive oil, but any oil works of course.
-Slice your chicken breasts in 1/4" thick slices. You can either wait until it cools or just hold it steady with a long fork like I do.
-Add your chicken breasts to a shallow baking dish, with a small portion of its grease.
-Pour your cream sauce mixture into your baking dish on top of the chicken. Most of the chicken slices will be covered with sauce.
-Add parmesan shredded cheese on top if you like. I didn't this time because it was in the freezer and I didn't forgot to take it out, but I usually do.
-Cover the dish with a piece of foil and cook for 30 mins.
-Let cool and serve over your choice of pasta. I used angel hair pasta, because once its added to boiling water, its done in like 7 minutes.

Bon Appetit! Try it and let me know how it tastes! :-)

My Plain Moisture-Drenched Side Ponytail....

I will NOT be rocking this this weekend, lol! My braidout fab will be returning!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Yooooowwwwww!!!!!!!! Its hot! (Haircare)

This summer is clearly going to brutal, temperature-wise. I mean, goodness! We moved from the midwest, which has a lot of everything -- 12" snow, to crazy July heat -- to Texas. I was excited to be somewhere where the winters wouldn't be as long and bitterly cold. But I guess there's a give and take because this Texas heat is no joke! We knew the summers were gonna be torture, but damn! I start sweating when I walk to my mailbox at the curb! No straight hairstyles this summer. Glad I got that out of the way Memorial Day weekend. Oh, and the humidity has the nerve to still contribute itself when the temperature is already 97 degrees, which is what we'll be facing tomorrow and 101 degrees on Friday and 102 degrees on Saturday. Whew! I was warned, but we're still happy with the move. Welcome to Texas I guess. I hear Houston is much hotter and humid, so it could be worse.

I try to run my errands and outings before the peak temps hit, which is generally sometime in the morning, but when it is 82 degrees at 8:30 am, I might as well not even rush and wait until noon. It cracks me up when we hear Texans say, "make sure you live near a pool." Yeah, a pool is not that important to me because whether I am outside walking, playing in the park or playing in the car, the big-bright-beautiful sun is still beaming its 100 degree heat on me. I can't transform into a mermaid and stay under the water forever while outside, soooooo I'm staying indoors where the AC is, lol. My hubby who is a pretty talented golfer and former football player can still deal with it if he chooses, i.e. the pool or the golf course. His reasoning is because he dealt with it at the beginning of football season. Well, not me buddy! Ok, just kidding. I will go to the pool every now and then, but I prefer to only go to the pool when the peak temperature is 90 degrees! And that probably won't be happening until the beginning of September.

*Sidenote: my Bambino is much better! Fever gone.

The deal with my hair this week.....Moisture-drenching

I'm not doing anything special style-wise this week or maybe even for a while. Well, hold on I may change my mind next week and rock some twists. I just want to give my hair a break after my blow drying and flat ironing session a few weeks ago. I actually wore it straight for two weeks. Right now, to keep my ends healthy, I'm doing my usual daily moisture-drenching and keeping my hair in a low ponytail puff. I started moisture-drenching because even though I have been retaining an awesome amount since last summer rocking my twist outs, I hated the fact that I pretty much let my hair 'dry' out or feel completely dry due to the fact that I didn't want to disturb my twist-out look (by adding any moisture) that I would wear for a week at a time.
I plan to rock a braidout out twist out this weekend though.

My moisture-drenching is to keep my hair moisturized and oiled even with its UV exposure in the summer and frigid drying temps in the winter. No matter how hot it gets, my hair will still be moisturized and the heat can't dry it out when I'm at the park or out running errands. I also started doing moisture-drenching because the way to retain our hair growth is to keep the ends of our hair healthy. The ends are the oldest parts of our hair, so if they aren't taken care of, there goes all of our hard work.

My current, daily moisture-drenching routine is:

-Spray water to lightly dampen my whole ponytail
-Put Herbal Essences Hydralicious all over my dampened ponytail
-I brush my ponytail, ends only, while holding the bulk of the ponytail steady
-Next, I take a quarter-sized amount of Burts Bees Baby Oil and rub that over my ends
-Last, I scrape a glob of my shea butter and 'warm' by rubbing my hands together and then I put the shea butter all over my ponytail ends.

Some of my curls are extremely defined after this and some arent, but at least I know, its been partially detangled and fully moisturized. I know some naturals actually put a mix condtioner and water in a spray bottle and spritz their hair with it daily, but I didn't really like the fact that the if you don't use all of your conditioner-water mix, then the conditioner ends up loosing its effects due to its dilution from the water. So, my method is pretty much the same.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Update on Ceramides and my sick Bambino :-(

Ceramide product not on LHCF's list....

I subscribe and follow CurlyNikki and ironically when she did a post last week about her dry twist out, she mentioned an oil she uses that contains all kinds of ceramide goodness. Burt's Bees Baby Bee Oil, easily found at Target. I'm so glad I took the time to read the whole post. Sometimes, skimming causes me to miss some things. Anyway, we all know oil goes a long way so I am using this in my hair and my youngest baby's hair. I really like this oil because of its wonderful ingredients, ease in its accessibility and scent. Check out the wonderful ingredients below.

How it Works

Naturally rich in antioxidants and vitamins, this nourishing oil leaves baby's skin soft and smooth. Specially formulated with Apricot and Grape Seed Oils to gently moisturize and comfort baby's delicate skin.

Ingredients: prunus armeniaca (apricot) kernel oil, vitis vinifera (grape) seed oil, tritium vulgare (wheat) germ oil, fragrance, helianthus annus (sunflower) seed oil, rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) leaf extract, tocopherol, glycine soja (soybean) oil, beta-carotene, canola oil, limonene.

I normally buy Grape Seed oil (along with sweet almond and Jojoba) from The Vitamin Shoppe, but now I can replace the grape seed oil with this oil. Yay! Definitley give it a try.

The adventures of motherhood.

My youngest boy just turned 5 months old yesterday, woohoo! Thank you God! 

But, now he's sick. He has a fever and of course as a mommy, I'm freaking out inside but remaining cool.....something his head is not. :-(  I thought he felt pretty warm Monday night, but I was thinking and hoping that it was just 'me.' Sometimes I can be perpetually cold, while daddy is ALWAYS hot. He seems to think that his boys are gonna take after him and always be hot too. Hey, they may.....but this time its a fever. I called the on-call nurse at our pediatrician and she told me to give him one dose of Tylenol and to make an appointment right away. Darn it. I knew he felt warm Monday night. Instead of hoping, I should've done this temperature and Tylenol then. Note to self.....when a mommy gets pregnant or becomes a mother in some way, God grants her Mother's Intuition....LISTEN to it!

I introduced him to green beans last night, which he haaaattttteeeeddddd and we got it on cute. But really last year green beans didn't get my oldest sick when he was introduced to it, so that can't be it. I don't know where this fever came from, but I'm hoping and praying it goes down and his health is restored. Motherhood. I love it and causes premature grey hair.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Tangle Method Tuesday - Comb Chase Method

The comb teeth face outward.

Stabilize the comb, while adding the flat iron.

Catch the comb with the flat iron.

Finish straightening!

When you want that "relaxed" straight hair look....this is the method to get it! Since I am right-handed, my describing of how to do this will be for right-hand dominant folks, but switch my hand placements with yours if you're left-handed. I saw a girl do this off of youtube and I was a bit scared to try it for fear that my coordination skills were gone. :-) But, they're still good! Next time I do this, it will be done on air-dried hair instead of blow-dried. My blow-drying hurt so bad, that I didn't get it as straight as I could have and so I may have used to flat iron a little longer than I would've liked, but you live and learn. 

First, I took a small section of hair and after putting my heat protectant (Fantasia IC) on, I combed through the section with the fine-toothed comb. Then, I took the handle of the fine-toothed comb with my right hand and placed it somewhere in the middle of the section of hair. The teeth were facing outward meaning away from my body. Next, I held the teeth of the comb, seen in the 2nd picture above, with my left hand while taking the flat iron with my right hand, and straightened my hair all the way down to where it met the comb and comb handle. I grabbed the comb handle, dropped my left hand and finished straightening to the end of the section of hair. 

I did two passes with the flat iron and comb. I think that the next time I do this, air drying in braids will allow me to only need to do one pass with the flat iron and comb. Also, I plan to get a comb that has teeth that are a little more rounded and a tad bit wider. As you may be able to see in the pictures above, the teeth are a bit pointy, so they weren't very gentle on my hair. Oh, and I will do bigger sections for a little more volume. It was a bit too flat for my liking. 

Au Revoir....

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

So...what's up with Ceramides?

I don't know what I was researching and googling, but I came across ceramides. Oh, wait! I just remembered, I was looking at LHCF and saw a discussion about ceramides and I got curious. I was all into it at first, but then as I read further, it seems like ceramides benefit relaxed, color-treated and/or chemically treated hair more than natural hair. It seems liek ceramides are what assist in keeping the cuticle layer closed when damaged by chemical treatments of any kind and rough weather exposure.

Although, we want our hair to grow 'fast', or keep it as healthy as possible, we can't try everything all at one time especially when what you are currently doing works, but its still good to have some of that knowledge in the back of your head. I wouldn't recommend trying new products when you are already experiencing great results with your favorite conditioners, but one way to incorporate ceramides is with oils! I love trying new oils because most are easy to find at The Vitamin Shoppe. I always feel like if it doesn't have a noticeable change of improvement in some way, its not hurting anything to keep using until it runs out. Also another way to use an oil is to mix it with another oil, like castor or coconut. I prefer to put my oils on when my hair is wet. The only oil I put on my hair when it is fully dry is castor oil because its thickness makes my thick hair feel moisturized and shiny. :-)

Hair is divided into three most important categories: strength, moisture and elasticity.Weekly deep conditioning, regular moisture-drenching/moisturizing, and bi-monthly protein treatments (whether henna or Aphogee Two Step) take care of these three categories. From what I have read, it all sums up to the fact that ceramides work similar to protein, but do not dry hair out in the way that protein does. They help in keeping the cuticle layer closed and also binds [easier] to hair that constantly has a lifted cuticle from chemical and over-manipulated damages (i.e. relaxed hair or natural hair that is over-manipulated). I still think that if its beneficial in the slightest, there's no harm in scalp-massaging with one of the listed oils. One of the many sources I read said that it is best used as a leave-in. So, when I begin to incorporate this into my routine, I will either be trying a new, recommended leave-in conditioner or just scalp massaging with one of the oils listed below....although another source said that Grapeseed oil contains ceramides and I already have that at home.

Below is a list of products containing ceramides that I found on LHCF.....

Barley Malt Oil
Eucalyptus Extract
Hemp Seed Oil
Hot 6 Oil
Kukui Oil
Sunflower Oil
Walnut Oil
Wheat Germ Oil


Aubrey Organics Products
BPT Wheat Germ Conditioner
Claudie's Hair Revitalizer Growth Elixir
Claudie's Hair Revitalizer Ends Insurance
Crece Pelo Leave-In
Creme of Nature (Green Bottle/Old Formula)
Garnier Fructis Instant Melting Strength and Repair Masque
Hask Cerafix
Ion Moisturizing Treatment
Jane Carter's Nutrient Replenishing Conditioner
Joico K-Pak Reconstructor
Kan Kanechomn Ceramide Deep Conditioning Cream
L'Oreal Elvive Nutri-Ceramide Deep Repair Concentrate
L'Oreal Serle Expert Liss Starter Ionene G + Ceramide Pre-Smoothing Treatment
Lustrasilk Cholesterol
Lustrasilk Shea Butter
Lustrasilk Mango
Matrix Biolage Cera-Repair
Matrix Biolage Fortifying conditioner
Matrix Biolage Cera-Repair Hydratherapie
Miss Key 10 en 1 Conditioner
Mizani Therma Smooth
Nexxus Aloe Rid
Nexxus Botanic Oil Shampoo
Nexxus Headdress
Nexxus Humectress
Nexxus Keraphix
Nexxus Therappe
Optimum Care Anti-Breakage Therapy Stay Strong Shampoo
Optimum Care Anti-Breakage Therapy Stay Strong Conditioner
Optimum Care Anti-Breakage Therapy Leave-in Ultimate Strengthener
Optimum Care Anti-Breakage Therapy Split End Reconstructor
Optimum Care Anti-Breakage Therapy Cream Hairdress
Optimum Care Anti-Breakage Therapy Featherlight Hairdress
ORS Hair Mayonaise (New Formula *WGO*)
Proclaim Aloe Hot Oil
Proclaim Natural 7 Oil
Proclaim Natural Olive Oil
Redken Extreme Conditioner
Redken Extreme Rescue Force
Redken Extreme Anti-Snap
Redken 07
Salerm Wheat Germ Conditioner
Satinique Products
Sedal Products
Shalmi Vadhera Coconut Alma Revitalizing Hair Treatment
Shey Butter Oil (Sally's)
Silicon Mix Proteina de Perla (Pearl Protein) Leave-In
Silicon Mix Conditioner
Silicon Mix Leave-in
Skala Ceramide 3 Conditioner (Brazilian)
Softsheen Carson Breakthru Anti-Breakage - Protecting Foam
Softsheen Carson Breakthru Anti-Breakage - Fortifying Moisturizing Shampoo
Taliah Waajid Enhancing Herbal Conditioner
TIGI Serious Conditioner
Ultra Black Hair Products


Optimum Care Anti-Breakage Therapy Relaxer System

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tangle Style Tuesday

This was last week's hair. I kind of couldn't wait to wash it out because my bantu knots were a little too tight and since becoming natural, my spouts with tender-headedness (is that even a word?) come and go.

Friday, June 3, 2011


My fab find is my NOOK-COLOR!!!  I freaking love this thing! I am a huge reader but oddly enough, I was apprehensive about this purchase. Why? Well, to me there is nothing like turning the pages of a book to me. I can read 200+ page books in a week, when I'm not tending to babies or catching up on my 'ridiculous' shows during naptime.....ridiculous shows being The Real Housewives of everywhere and my guilty pleasure, One Life To Live - so upset its going off the air. Anyway, I also love the feeling of accomplishment I feel when the stack of pages in my left hand go from a thin stack to a thick stack. I don't know why but it is just cool to me. It may have to do something with starting and finishing something, because procrastination is typically something I'm good at.

Well, with the Nook-Color, you don't get to have that feeling of accomplishment being able to see the stack of pages in your left hand increase, but it is still awesome! You can highlight however many pages you like and make notes. And best of all, you can start reading multiple books all at once! Okay okay, that definitely isn't good with 'procrastination' problems but the option is cool. Although I love being able to keep a small bookcase of my books, I'll probably never dedicate a room in my house for a library, so its not too big of a deal that I don't own the actual book instead of my electronically downloaded copy. The Nook-Color also gives the option of being able to download a free sample (meaning a previously selected # of pages) of the book you are thinking about purchasing, which is just as good as going to the bookstore or library and reading a few pages before buying it. So, yes you do have to purchase books but you do so at a discounted price which is nice. Some books even have a "sharing/lending" option where you can let another Nook-Color owner borrow one of your downloads for free for a certain amount of time. I haven't tried this yet, but I'm sure I will eventually.

Okay, enough with the books! What about games? Email? Internet browsing? The Nook-Color does all of it. The code has even been cracked so that you can make it an Android tablet. I haven't done that and probably never will. I'll just use my android phone. The games that I play are crossword puzzles, Sudoku and chess. Oh amd I have Pandora on there too! So, the last great thing about the Nook-Color is that you can take it on the plane and still have a ton of books and magazines, games and music all stored in one place!
If you're a reader, I say damn the iPad....go get you a Nook-Color! Its even half the price. :-)

Happy Friday!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Toddler Tantrums

How Do You Deal With Toddler Tantrums?

My oldest boy is now 17 months old and has been throwing numerous tantrums lately. His cry turns into a loud screaming cry and he buckles his legs and knees at every few steps, whether I'm holding his hand or not. If he is sitting on my lap and ready to have a tantrum, he stiffens his body and slides off of my lap. I never thought, and surely always hoped, that I would be the parent of one of those kids/babies/toddlers that screams and cries out in public when they don't get their way. Luckily, I haven't been out at the grocery store or clothing store while this has happened, but it has happened at two different portrait studios and the playground.  When this happens, my thoughts are always, "Are you serious?", "Please this really happening?"

Understanding the tantrum...
So, clearly the tantrum comes from not being to get your way, when you want it and how you want it. And of course, there is no way a toddler/baby is going to get their way! The parent always knows what's best and does what is best for the child. A perfect and simple example of this is when a temper tantrum is thrown is because he does not want to go down for his nap, even though he has been rubbing his eyes tirelessly. 

Tantrums that are a little more complicated are, seeing a toy that you love when out and not being able to play with it or having to sit still when you want to run and play. Those situations sound easy, but for a toddler its not so simple. As the parent, I am trying to understand his point of view. A friend of mine who has 3 boys, told us -after laughing of course- to imagine ourselves playing with something all the time, then going somewhere different, but seeing a toy that looks to be your exact same toy and not being able to play with it. Its almost like a mixed message for them. Also, since the attention spans of toddlers at this age are around 10 minutes, its hard for them to sit still for anything more than 30 minutes (hence the portrait studio after already waiting 30 minutes because the photographer was running late).

Most times, a toddler's cognitive and motor skills develop faster than their verbal skills and the screaming, crying and body fits comes from their inability to communicate what they are wanting to do at that time. This is definitely the case for my oldest!

Dealing with the tantrum....

I am still figuring out a way to deal with these tantrums. I am not enjoying this part of mommyhood at all! I must admit, I probably thought babies and toddlers were like robots and just did what you said with no problems, lol. I really knew nothing about babies, kids, "terrible two's/three's" or anything. I was never curious about it either, but even if I read up on it, I still think that nothing can prepare you for how to deal with this until it happens to public. 

So far, if it is a frustration tantrum, I help and talk him threw it, like when he throws a ball out of reach and starts to fake-cry. Now, when it is a manipulation tantrum, which is what he performs out in public, I discipline him by pulling him away from whatever fun things he (we) was doing IMMEDIATELY and scolding him with my words, tone of voice and facial expressions. It is starting to work, but he still tests the system of course. There may be a time, when something more is needed but not right now and he's still too young for 'Time Out.'
My parents told me that my brother and I were always easy, so this must be his daddy's personality coming out. ;-)
He's actually not that bad, but definitely not a robot.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Straightened Hair - Length Check!

I finally straightened my hair by myself and it was a success! Woohoo! I do my body measurements with my hair, so I would say I am APL, arm pit length. I wanted to straighten my hair because we took family photos and since its summertime, I won't be straightening for a LONG time.

December 2010

Um...ouch! Note to self: Always AIR DRY!
May 2011 - excuse my poor lighting
May 2011

I have several layers throughout my hair. It seems that the majority of my hair is at my shoulder blades but my longer layers (and bottom half of my head) is APL, arm pit length. The average head of hair grows 6" a year or 1/2" a month. I am not sure where my hair growth falls within that standard, so I am just trying to establish good practices to continue retaining as much as I can each month.
In December 2010, my longest layer reached the bottom of my shoulder blades and I cut it off because I thought my ends were straggly and unhealthy. Now, I know that my ends were actually healthy but still 'curly' and the 'curl' came off as straggly.
This time when I straightened, I used the comb-chase method and that helped my ends to really straighten out. Wash day this week will consist of a light protein treatment and some intense deep conditioning to replenish anything lost from using heat on my hair.