May 31, 2011

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Last week Clutch Magazine asked their readers where they would be in 5 years and it got me thinking.

If you asked me 5 years ago (when I was 21) where I would be at 26, I would have imagined myself single, living the fast-paced city lifestyle in Chicago with all of my single girlfriends...

Fast forward 5 years later and I'm in fact a married military spouse living in the bible belt of the South - - nowhere near where I thought I'd be... but so incredibly happy with how my life has worked out. I think this goes to show that you can make whatever plans you want, but God will always have a hand in the process. As my husband says, "Life is what happens when you're busy making plans."

So, when thinking about where I see myself in the next 5 years I of course have my plans, but am wise enough to know that God will work in my life the way he sees fit. I know some things for sure - - whatever I face I'll be with my amazingly supportive husband and I'll be happy. Icing on the cake? I'd like to have children within the next 5 years. I want to feel stable and secure... and throughout everything I want to wake up everyday excited that I'm living the life I want and knowing that I'm exactly where I should be.

Sometimes I joke that my husband and I will be living a super simple life on the beach with 1 TV, no DVR, and internet access (of course). He's going to rent beach bikes to tourists and I'll give surfing lessons lol. It makes us both laugh but I know that we could easily turn into beach bums... having our kids run around with no shoes on and curls blowing in the wind. Actually, that would be an awesome life... but the other side of me would be content living on the umpteenth floor of a high rise in the city, not knowing my neighbor's names and raising my kids in a concrete jungle... Yes, I'm extreme.

So, where do you see yourself in 5 years? Check for me on an exotic beach or downtown high rise lol...

May 30, 2011

Cat Grooming 101

I've somehow convinced myself that any and everything my cats do is the cutest thing ever done by a pet. I've turned into one of those slightly obnoxious and annoying feline parents, and the following video is a product of extra time and my cats being their typical cute selves.

This is the first time my husband and I saw Smudge grooming Misty this intensely and it was adorable to watch. It's funny to think back to when we first brought her home and she spent 2 weeks hiding under the couch lol... Thank God they took to one another because I thought I was going to lose my mind those first few weeks.

Until I have kids I'll probably continue to make videos like this. You'd have to be a pet parent to think it's cute lol... but I love my kittens!! They're growing up so fast... *electronic tear*

May 29, 2011

Reality Check: Basketball Wives Season 3

It doesn't premiere until Monday night, but VH1 released the first full episode of season 3 of Basketball Wives. I must admit that I haven't watched every episode of this show, but I follow it enough to know what's going on. I had some free time Saturday so I watched the season opener and it's definitely more of the same. Viewers that love the drama will get a hefty dose as all the same players are returning for another catty season in Miami. Meeka, an actual NBA wife, is the newest addition to the cast and seems like she'll try hard to find her place in the drama.

During the premiere Evelyn touched on the fact that her stuff with Tami's husband happened 13 years ago when she was 22 yo. I can't speak for anyone else, but if I was held accountable for some of the craziness I did at 22 when I was 35 it'd be a slight mess. I totally side with Tami regarding the messy way the news came out, but a 35 yo woman is usually NOTHING like her 22 yo self... usually... HOPEFULLY! lol... I think Evelyn and Tami would make a great duo if their friendship could blossom so we shall see.

As for the other ladies - - Jennifer is spreading her wings after the divorce, Shaunie is still the queen bee, and Ashely/Susie/Royce are still being random.

Did you watch the premiere? Do you plan on watching this season?

May 28, 2011

Natural Hair: Giving Mini Twists a try...

A few weeks ago I posted a video by YouTuber Napural85 showcasing her mini twists. Feeling somewhat inspired to give mini twists a try, and wanting to give myself a "mini" break from doing my hair, I began twisting and emerged 3 hours later with the smallest twists I've done to date.

Day 1 - Mini Twists
I did my twists on hair that had been previously washed and styled in a twist-out. The most important tip to remember when twisting hair is to start with even sections. Sometimes when  twisting your hair you can run out of hair in a section and start to borrow from another. Although this doesn't always affect the way your twists look it will make taking them down a nightmare! I made sure to keep sections separate and when I took my twists down it was a breeze.

Naptural85 was able to leave her twists in for a few weeks, but I was only aiming for 7 days at the very most. I kept my twists in for 4 days which was the longest I've worn any style. I was not only proud of myself, but thrilled at the mini break from daily styling. While my hair was twisted I followed Naptural85's method of wrapping my twists at night (similar to how I would wrap my relaxed hair), and used bobby pins to secure the style. This helped to stretch my twists and give some volume. 

I wrapped my twists at night and secured with bobby pins

Since my hair is so fine I noticed that by the 3rd day of doing the "wrap at night" method, my hair was super stretched but had very little curl. 

Day 3 - My twists were limp and lifeless. You can see how super stretched some pieces were in the back.

I decided to wash my twists and let water breathe life back into my hair. This proved to work well for plumping my twists back up, but I did notice that washing my twists made them a bit fuzzier. By day 4 I was ready to have my big hair back and bid adieu to the mini twists.

Day 4 - After washing my twists they were plump again, but the roots were loose so I decided to take them down.
Please ignore the deodorant marks lol
I must say that this style was pretty awesome and I even ventured into the newsroom with my hair twisted. This was the first time I wore my hair in a twisted style, purposely, out of the house. Usually I just throw on a hat and wear a bit of the front out while the rest is in twists, but I was pleasantly surprised at how much easier it was on my hair.

In terms of the products I used for my twists - - since my hair was already washed and dry in a day old twist-out, I used a spray bottle of water to dampen each section, detangle, and used my Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, sealing my ends with Lisa's Hair Elixir by Carol's Daughter (probably my favorite oil mix out... and this stuff lasts forever! I've had 1 bottle for over a year).

My girlfriend Sexyandthechi also gave mini twists a try after seeing the video, but her goals were way more ambitious than mine - - she wanted to keep her twists in for a few weeks! Did anyone else treat themselves to a hair break by doing mini twists?

May 27, 2011

Update: Air France Flight 447 Crash

Like many around the world I watched in shock as news of the Air France flight 447 crash spread two years ago. Over the years I've followed the investigation into what brought the jet down and was amazed when they found the black boxes on the ocean floor two years later. The data was finally analyzed and recently released.

The jet experienced failure of its speed sensors and stalled at a high altitude. It took only 3 mins and 30 secs for the Airbus 330 to plummet 38,000 feet literally belly-flopping on the ocean surface. All 228 people on board died in the crash and my heart still breaks for what they must have experienced in those final minutes.

Something most people don't know about me is that I have a crazy obsession with airplanes along with a fear of plane crashes and slight anxiety flying. I think it has more to do with my control freak issues and being trapped in this "box in the sky" because I truly think airplanes are beautiful and their ability to effortlessly glide through the air captivates me.

I wanted to share this video update that CNN provided for anyone else that was following this story.

As everyone prepares to travel this Memorial Day Weekend please be safe!

May 25, 2011

Valley Social: Sip & Spin - A Scottsdale Bar Crawl

Saturday, May 28th come out and join IconStatus Entertainment and Power 98.3 as they Sip & Spin their way though some of Scottsdale's best bars.

The bar crawl which kicks off Memorial Day weekend will hit Old Town hot spots: White House, Urban 7 Martini Kitchen, Dos Gringos and Upper Deck Sport's Grill.

The event is $7 in advance (buy tickets here) and $10 the day of the event. Registration begins @ 6p at Upper Deck Sport's Grill (4224 North Craftsman Court).

Attendees will enjoy 1 complimentary shot & shot glass, along with a Sip & Spin wrist band entitling them to food and drink specials, with prizes and giveaways at each location.

I always pictured bra crawls being reserved for the rowdy, frat guy college types... but IconStatus is always adding a sophisticated fun touch to their events. This is a great way to experience a bar crawl sans the raggedy college scene.

May 24, 2011

We run this....

I'm the first to admit that I didn't like this song when it dropped. I actually still don't care for the album version, but the video track has claimed me as the next victim of B Season! Yes, I'm admitting it right now: Beyonce's "Run the World" has grown on me like a fungus! Since watching her captivating performance on the Billboard Music Awards Sunday night I've been singing the song nonstop.

I came across Sean Bankhead's take on her video via YouTube and wanted to share. I think some of the choreography was executed sloppily,but I like seeing a different take on her song.

What do you think of the video? Has the song grown on you yet?

May 23, 2011

All hail the Queen

It's impossible to watch this video and not be blown away by Beyonce. Not only did she manage to rock this song (that many have not been feeling), but she proved once again why she's an unstoppable entertainer. The performance was amazing and she was the highlight of the show (only reason I watched).

As she accepted her award I almost teared up at how beautiful, yet humble and talented this young woman is!!! I'm excited for B season and can't wait for the album "4" to drop.

All hail the Queen.

May 20, 2011

Grand Opening: Forever21 @ Columbiana Centre

Forever21 will finally be opening their doors tomorrow - Saturday, May 21st @ 10AM!!!

The store is the first for the midlands (located at the Columbiana Centre) and will feature the WNOK street team, in-store DJ from 10a-6p, along with 10% off all purchases over $40 for the entire day. They'll also be giving the first 200 people in line gift cards valued up to $210 - - and we all know you can buy a new wardrobe with $210 at their store.

I've been desperately yearning to get my Forever21 fix since moving to SC and am hoping I can make it out for this grand opening. Now, if they could just add an H&M and Nordstrom Rack I'd be in heaven lol.

Will you make it out for this event?

May 18, 2011

Giveaway: "Mani Pedi" by Julia Miles-Davis

Already the owner of a successful image consulting business (SimoneVivian), personal stylist Julia Miles-Davis recently added author to her credentials. The release of her first book "Mani Pedi" was written for college students and recent grads who find themselves facing the reality of life after graduation. This is not another "how-to" book with endless steps to follow. Miles-Davis adds a personal touch by sharing her story, and offers encouraging, enlightening advice on how to navigate life as a budding young professional.

** I'm very excited to announce that Six Twenty Seven will be giving away an autographed copy of "Mani Pedi" and winning is simple - - all you need to do is leave a comment with your best advice for navigating life as a young professional ALONG with your favorite way to relax. The giveaway is open until 5/25 so be sure to spread the word and leave your comments below **

I had the opportunity to speak with Julia regarding her first book....

Q. The title of your book is Mani Pedi. At first glance people may think this is a book about beauty, but it's actually full of professional advice. How did you pick the title and what does it mean to you?

A. Mani Pedi became the title because it’s what I like to have done when I’m stressed out. I thought long and had about a title- I didn’t want the title to sound too serious and boring. So I thought about what makes me feel good when I am dealing with a situation.

Q. It says that after graduating from college you struggled to obtain a job offer. The current job market is rather dismal for new grads. What is your advice for staying encouraged and productive during the job hunt?

A. With the current job market being the way it is, I always advise young grads that if you can’t find “the job” you what, leave your pride at the door and take a job that will allow you to pay your bills, but continue to work towards you ultimate goal. Meaning stay productive by interning to get your foot in the door or at night when you get off apply for other jobs you want, write your business plan, etc. Also if you can’t find a job in your profession I say start your own company! We live in a generation of small businesses and self-made millionaires.

Q. You've had success as a personal stylist. The fashion industry is known to chew people up and spit them out. How did you manage to make it? What is your advice for someone looking to start a career in fashion?

A. It wasn’t until I moved to Scottsdale, AZ and couldn’t find a job that I decided to start my own business. Before having my company I interned and was offered a job from my internship. Regardless as to which area of fashion you want to work in, it's always great to find a mentor in that field that will be able to direct and advise you. I truly believe that if you have a passion for something and work hard at turning your dreams into reality, you will succeed.

Mani Pedi is available for purchase ($17.95) via Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

May 16, 2011

Decorating a studio apartment

Apartment Therapy's Small/Cool 2011 contest is officially over, but I just came across this amazing studio and I'm quickly falling in love. Onielia's studio is quite large at 535 square feet, and she used two huge perks to her advantage: large windows and a great layout!

I love how she used the bookcase to separate her sleeping area, and the rest of the furniture was the right scale for the space. If this is what studio living is like I may be able to give this a shot.

May 9, 2011

Natural Hair Meetup - Columbia, SC

Natural ladies living in the Columbia, SC area now have a place to connect!

Next week Tanta B Salon in the Vista will be hosting their May Curly Girl Gathering on 5/16 from 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm. 

Stylists will be on hand to answer questions along with sharing their pro tips for natural hair care. The event will also feature a product swap, so feel free to bring anything that didn't work for you and give someone else a chance to try it.

If you're interested in attending this free event please shoot me an email and I'll send the event link to you.

Tanta B Salon
619 Lady St
Columbia, SC 29201

May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

Motherhood is a beautiful thing... 

Taking some time today to wish my mother and other fabulous women in my life a Happy Mother's Day!

May 6, 2011

3 Ways to Tie a TurBand

Turbans are very popular right now, but what about ladies that don't want to cover their entire head? Meet the TurBand! The result of a Turban + Headband, the TurBand is a great alternative to get the look of a turban with the functionality of a headband.

In a recent video LEAFtv shows 3 DIY ways to rock a TurBand to save yourself from a bad hair day, update an outfit, or find a new use for your favorite scarf.

What do you think? Will you be trying out this style?

How To Tie A Turband 3 Ways from LEAFtv on Vimeo.

Why I won't be choosing the next Netflix Movie...

Last night I finally got a chance to watch Black Swan...

Actually, Netflix sent it over a week ago, but it managed to collect dust on the counter. Nevertheless, I decided to see for myself what all the hype was about. Fast forward a few hrs later and I was left staring at my screen slightly puzzled.

Black Swan did succeed at keeping my attention. There were even times I jumped and had to look away from the screen; however, at the end of the movie I was still struggling to make sense of it all. While I grasped the overall concept of the movie, I didn't understand the amount of hype it received. The acting was good and the story line didn't lag, but I didn't end the movie thinking my socks had been blown off.

This is another instance of how annoying "hype" can be surrounding some movies. Although they may be good, when you walk into the theater with such high expectations there's little room to go anywhere but down.

Another movie I watched a few weeks ago was 127 Hours. *Deep Sigh* This movie was an utter disappointment and actually caused me to fast forward through a few parts. I had wanted to see this film and was excited when the online movie group I'm a part of selected this as their next film... though after watching this movie I was left wanting to cut my own arm off... anything to get away from the screen. I thought the movie was boring and a great example of how real events don't always translate into Hollywood thrillers. Then again, both of these movies got rave reviews from the critics and garnered academy award attention, so could it be that I'm just not drinking the right kool-aid?

My last two Netflix picks have caused my husband to put me on a "timeout" lol. I'm actually nervous to even select anymore movies because these two have been less than stellar choices. I think "The Social Network" was next in our queue, but I'll let him make the final decision... I can't handle another cinematic let down.

If anyone else saw these movies, what were your thoughts? I've been enjoying Netflix a lot lately - - just thanking my lucky stars I didn't drop $$$ seeing these things in the theater.

May 3, 2011

Natural Hair: Mini Twists for the Summer

YouTuber Naptural85 posted a great how-to video for creating mini twists on natural hair. Although this style can be time consuming, it can be worn for a few weeks and is a nice way to give yourself a break from daily styling.

I've heard horror stories about the humidity in South Carolina, so I have my eyes on mini twists as way to create cute updos and keep my hair off of my neck.

And if you're nervous about the process of taking down the twists don't worry - - she also created a video explaining how she takes the twists down.

Has anyone done mini twists on their hair before? What did you think?

May 2, 2011

2011 Rosewood Crawfish Festival

This weekend I had the pleasure of attending the 6th Annual Rosewood Crawfish Festival and tried the festival's namesake for the first time.

Crawfish (or crawdads) look like small lobsters and can be very intimidating to a newbie. Although I love seafood and can throw back shellfish with the best of them, the idea of eating crawfish freaked me out. Their eyes, tails, and antennas are all intact so handling the "mud bugs" can make a person squeamish.

The festival featured over 5,000 lbs of crawfish that were shipped in from Louisiana, along with other Southern foods like Alligator!!  $16 bought you a meal which included 2.5 lbs of crawfish, which I found to be expensive, but after thinking about the time it took to ship, cook, and serve the critters I felt the price was justified.

Crawfish remains - - they looked hideous but were SO good... and yes, you MUST suck the head!

A lovely gentlemen at our table demonstrated how to eat the crawfish and by the end of the day I felt like a pro. This is definitely a messy food and best enjoyed outside wearing clothes that can handle a few splashes. It took me a few tries to perfect the art of squeezing the head and sucking the juices... I had a few gnarly splashes all over the place lol... but it was a lot of fun.

 If you live in the Columbia area definitely put this on your list for next year.

May 1, 2011

2011 White House Correspondent's Dinner

I'm not one to get heavy into politics, but I wanted to share these gems.

President Obama was able to cut loose and make a few jokes at the 2011 White House Correspondent's Dinner. Check out his full speech below.

Lead SNL writer and actor Seth Myers was hilarious as he joked about everyone, the President included. I thoroughly enjoyed watching Donald Trump squirm in his seat.

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