Hey gang the Target designer collections for spring is live. Yes the rumors are true all the pieces are under $50!!! You know what that means mama is going stock up!!!
This drop features one of my favorite labels FeNoel. This is probably the only time I can actually afford multiple pieces from the brand without using Affirm lol. I’m not ashamed to admit that either, miss Felisha (Felisha Noel= FeNoel, the brand’s creator) is heavy on the luxe and there’s nothing wrong with that!! We (black girls) deserve all the things too!!! The collaboration also includes pieces from other popular warm weather brands, Rhode and Agua Bendita.
As promised, fresh new content for 2023. I was suppose to post this Monday but totally missed the mark, so let’s talk makeup. So here it is on a Thursday. This update is kind of a big deal for me. I had the privilege and pleasure of slaying Dr. Stella Chukwu face for her very first television appearance. Hopefully this will be the first of many of Dr. Stella’s TV appearances.
Hey Gang!!! This post has been a loooooooooong time coming and I’m NOT sorry. I’ve been living my best life…lol, I have neglected the blog, putting most of my energy into my other social media platforms. But that all changes now. You can expect much MORE content on the blog moving forward. Even if it’s a quick check-in or update, there will be more.
Remember when I said I’ve been living my best life? Well, I wasn’t lying. I checked off a huge bucket list item this year, I went to Greece. This was my second international trip since the pandemic started, last year then we went to Jamaica for a wedding. I also took a quick trip to Aruba, a post for another day.
You can definitely tell we’re getting closer to an endemic.
Last year facemask and proof of a negative Covid-19 test were a travel REQUIREMENT, this year not so much. Wearing a mask is optional (I wore a mask on both flights and in large group settings) since the requirement for a negative test result is out the window. I have to say that was a bit unsettling. Knowing everyone on the flight at least attempted to do their part made me feel safer flying. Now it’s the wild west. I suppose we’re reaching towards to a new normal, so I’ll stow my anxious thoughts and take all my future flights masked up. Boom travel anxiety issue cured.
Enough about my travel anxieties let’s get into this trip to Greece. Needless to say, I had a blast. Greece has been on my bucket list FOREVER!!! Amazing cuisine, hospitable people (except maybe the ferry ride, I’ll get into that later) and calmest and most relaxing beaches anyone could ask for.
YASSOU, YASSOU FROM GREECE
We started our trip in Athens, the “we” in this story consist of my twin sister Alex and my cousin Jacqueline. I left on Saturday afternoon and arrived early Sunday morning which was perfect because I slept most of the flight. I woke up to the most beautiful sunrise. Nothing beats a window seat!
I landed in Athens around 11 am. Meet up with Alex and Jack and we were off. We stayed the Coco Mat Jumelle. There are several Coco Mat locations throughout Athens, we stayed at two different properties (the second was the Coco Mat Athens BC), both locations were great.
Both hotels had a modern, but homey feel to them. I have to say the staff was exceptional at the Coco Mat Athens BC location. Both locations had its own appeal. The Jumelle is located on what I would equate to embassy row in DC. A few cafes near buy, a mini-mart of sorts and commercial businesses lined the streets near the Juemelle. The Athens location was nestled on a busy but welcoming street. A bookstore, bakery, coffee shop, charming boutiques and restaurants are all in walking distance of the Athens BC location. The hotel doesn’t look like a hotel at all, that’s large in part because the entrance is a part of the store front for the Coco Mat’s home decor brand.
On our first night we saw all we could see. We explored the neighborhood, got a bit to eat at a bar we stumbled upon (Ruins) to cap off the night. The drinks at the Ruins were delicious, the food didn’t disappoint either. But jet lag hit hard. I may or may not have taken a brief siesta at the bar. I wasn’t sleep I was just resting my eyes. In my defense the seats were extremely comfy. It was a great first night, it ended with free desert, you couldn’t ask for a better tart.
Hey Gang! I hope everyone is enjoying the long weekend. I couldn’t let the season end without doing an EveryBODY Matters swimwear edit with my bestie Amanda. Fun fact, Summer isn’t technically over until September 21st, but folks love closure and Labor Day weekend usually gives the Summer haters (aka lovers of all things Fall/Winter) closure. A debate on the change of the seasons isn’t why we’re here. It’s all but the swimsuits. This year we’re in Good American Swimsuits.
EVERYBODY MATTERS- GOOD AMERICAN SWIMWEAR EDITION
As you can imagine finding a flattering swimsuit, that we both loved or liked a enough to be photographed in was a challenge. I heard Good American had a plus size line so I decided to test them out. Yes I’m keenly aware this is Khloe Kardashian’s brand and none of them need anymore of our money than they already have. But I wanted to see if the brand lived up to the hype. Short story I wasn’t disappointed but I wasn’t impressed either. Before I get into the critique of the swimsuits, we need to discuss the shoot location.
Amanda wanted to do something “different” for this year’s swimsuit edit, she wanted to do the photoshoot at a waterfall. Queue TLC’s Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls. Since going to the rainforest of Costa Rica was out of the question, I found a local waterfall at Scott’s Run Preserve in McLean, VA. With very little time to scout the location (fresh off my Grecian vacation) I had no idea what to expect. However from the little research I did do, it seemed easy enough to get to, a 1.5 mile walk to the falls, EASY. However we didn’t take that path. For reasons I can’t explain, we decided to just follow the people walking up the stairs. I never follow the crowd but this time I figured why not; big mistake!
No I’m not referring to my fabulous outfit, I did kinda slay this look. Pats self on back. I’m actually referring to the work the team at She Did That Films is doing. Before we get into the film, let’s discuss why I was out on a school night, looking like a whole snack LOL.
SHE DID THAT
The saying you attract what you are couldn’t be more true when comes to Christina @sharpandsoundstyle. Christina and I are lifestyle bloggers, we connected via Instagram. We recently started following each other, commenting on each other pics and stories, we became quick IG friends. Short story short we decided we needed to meet in real life. Christina invited me to a screening of She Did That’s short film on Kalilah Wright, CEO of Mess In a Bottle.
We decided to meet up for dinner. Christina suggested we dine at Dirty Habit. Definitely a must if you’re in Washington DC area or plan to visit. The short ribs and mash (pictured below) literally melt in your mouth. I like sweet cocktails, so the Monaco Side Car was a perfect pairing. After dinner we made our way to the screening. When kindred spirits connect it’s a vibe y’all! I had good ole time with miss Christina! I smell a collaboration coming, stay tuned for that.
Warning there is no fashion news here. Just life happening in a big uncomfortable ways.
It’s been an interesting couple of weeks, truly stranger than fiction. I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried. Where do I start, ah let’s start at the lock down at Laila’s school two weeks ago. Yes that was as nerve wrecking as it sounds. Her school sent out the alarming text below about an hour before dismissal:
“Our school has been placed on lockdown. We have no additional information to report at this time. All children are safe and secured in the building.”
No cause for concern right?! The safe and secure part is the only thing that kept sane. The no additional information part is what I was struggling with. Given what little information I was given, I was proud of the level of calm I maintained. I called my husband to tell him what was happening. He was his usual cool and collected self, nothing to see here. While he was doing his best to reassure me this was probably nothing, Laila texted, deep sigh of relief. She let us know she was just fine but her classmates were whispering loudly (point of fact they were not whispering at all) and if this was an actual threat she’d been done for.
This kids starts texting us her survival plan which consisted of playing dead and covering herself in someone else’s blood. Plan B was hiding in the coat closet. I immediately thought how sad is this. This kid is devising survivial tactics to make it through the school day. I never had this particular and peculiar worry. Sheltering in place, in case of an active shooter was unheard of when I was in sixth grade and I went to school in NYC, the shooters were usually outside. Different struggles, same sad world.
STRANGER THAN FICTION
Fast forward to the stranger than fiction part. This is probably one of THEE wildest things that has ever happened to me. I was born and raised in Brooklyn NYC, I’ve seen my fair share of extraordinary. Let me set the scene, it’s a sunny Tuesday morning, I’m working from home, under my heated blanket, minding my business, living my best life. Then I hear a ZOOM, SCREECH, BAM!!! It was like an old Batman & Robin episode, sirens blaring, helicopters hovering, and shouts of GET OUT THE CAR, GET OUT OF THE CAR!!! I peek out my bedroom window to find police officers, what I eventually learn are actually U.S. Marshalls arresting someone.
One of our dedicated supporters noticed I pulled a Tiffany Haddish, a fashion faux pas, clutch you’re pearls, oh no she didn’t offense… The crime, I wore a statement piece twice and I was photographed in it. The first time I wore said cardigan was during a 2018 photoshoot in Dallas, TX. I dusted her off again for our recent Black History Month photo shoot. The cardigan is as old as the blog. It’s only right that she is the star in this edition of “Shop Your Closet.”
SHOP YOUR CLOSET
There are so many reasons you should give the clothes in your closet another spin around the block. First you’re not a celebrity no one remembers or cares that you wore that dress twice. Second it makes sense from an economic and sustainability perspective. Third we may be on the brink of another Cold War with Russia. Buying new clothes will be the last thing on the to do list.
If the US imposes any of the sanctions reported, gas prices will skyrocket, and we’ll be paying $20 a gallon on gas. Californians might not even flinch at that kind of increase they already pay something close to that right now…lol All I know is Russia is super annoying right now and I need them to chill; it’s upsetting to me and my homegirls. Ok that ends my take on geo-political matters, back to the fashion.
On this 18th day of February (Black History Month 2022), I give you The Beales (sans Sanaa, track meets trump photo shoots these days). We are indeed our ancestors wildest dreams.
We are a young black family, successful, educated, and gifted. Everything the generations before us dreamed of but were denied. We are the dream realized and it feels good. The grandness of my existence is only possible because of the sacrifice and struggle of those before me. So when I show up I show out… PERIOD
Maybe you put on a few pounds during the pandemic, maybe you’re on the road to your new body but you’re not quite there yet and you need a little help. Insert shapewear, actually insert SPANX or SKIMS. If you are at all confused (for my male readers) as to what a SPANX or a SKIMS are, it’s just shapewear (body smoothing/slimming under garments for the ladies). Pay attention gentlemen you might just learn something.
SPANX VS SKIMS
Gone are the days of the bone crushing girdles (ask you’re grandmothers and aunties about it, this post is only but so long…lol) we have now reached much a more civilized place in society where we squeeze and smooth our unwanted fat in what amounts to high-tech elastic.
SPANX totally reset the bar on body shaping under garments. If Spanx reset the bar, it’s probably fair to say SKIMS made it prettier, more popular, and dare I say a bit more functional. One should expect nothing less from the pop-culture icon Kim Kardashian. SKIMS is Kim K.’s creation.
To be completely fair, this isn’t an apples to apples comparison. Being a novice to the shapewear game I unwittingly purchased a bodysuit from each brand thinking they would be comparable in fit considering they were comparable in price and I thought design as well; I was wrong. Gentlemen keep reading if you still care at this point.
Let’s start with the OG, SPANX. I purchased the Thinstinct Thing Bodysuit from Spanx. It’s definitely thin, they got that part right. The bodysuit is described as follows: “…the Thinstincts® Thong Bodysuit is the perfect smoothing, lightweight layering piece.” It’s definitely light weight, great piece for layering, but it doesn’t quite check the box in the smoothing department; at least not for me.
Hey guys it’s been a while since I’ve posted on the blog, but as you can imagine life has been life’ing in a major way. The New Year started off a little rocky for the Beale’s, Covid-19 invaded my house. The whole house contracted that good ole Omarion (Omicron variant). Because black people play entirely too much and have zero chill we’ve dubbed the Omicron variant, the “Omarion” (R&B Singer, B2K) virus/variant for obvious reasons. “Omarion” Touched down on our house January 1st and I didn’t start feeling like myself until late last week. Of course the husband and kids bounced back in like 2.5 days; I took a little longer.
Long Haul Covid
It was scary and disappointing to end up with Covid considering we’ve been so vigilant during the pandemic, wearing our mask, social distancing, quarantining when necessary, and getting vaccinated. Disappointing because no matter how vigilant you are, there’s no real safe place unless you stay inside and limit your interactions with the outside world to the bare minimum. Scary because I didn’t want to end up with any Long Haul Covid symptoms-loss of smell, taste, fatigue, dependent on oxygen just to breathe. Long Haul Covid is real. I personally know folks who are suffering with these long term symptoms. I didn’t want any of it and so far I’m not experiencing any of symptoms, thank God. I’m just happy to back in the land of the living.