Friday, September 28, 2012

Call me corny.

Fall is my favorite season by far.

        There is a chill in the air, but it’s bright and sunny out.

      Tights, turtlenecks, sweaters – fall clothes are the best!

      Colorful leaves crunch under your feet and float from the sky.

      I ceremoniously switch to my favorite "pumpkin purse."

Bag 'o tricks.

 But most importantly, the onset of fall whispers two little words into my ear:
Sweet Jesus I love candy corn!
I love it so much that I cannot be trusted with it.

Even my four year old knows it needs to be hidden away from Mommy, or Mommy will go to bed cursing herself on a sugar high that keeps her up until three a.m. in a cold sweat.

And don’t try and give me those bullshit pumpkins, other candy corn flavored shaped gourds, brown Indian candy corn or try and tell me in April that pastel colored Easter candy corn tastes the same, or better – it’s not and it doesn't.

Give me my yellow on the bottom, orange in the middle, white pointy topped little triangle and I’m a happy girl.
A very happy girl.

So…how excited do you think I was browsing through Sephora when I came upon this:

Based on the name of the product alone, I knew it would be mine.

I love candy corn three-in-one shampoo, shower gel and bubble bath by philosophy was made for candy corn addicts like me who love the almost (almost) sickeningly sweet scent. I scooped it up and looked forward to some sweet time in the tub that night.

I don’t love the philosophy stuff as far as shampoo goes but I do love it as a bubble bath and shower gel. And this was way y-u-m-m-y. Sweet, vanilla/honey/corny goodness.

I felt like Mena Suvari on the poster for American Beauty.

Americorn Beauty

Finally, a candy corn indulgence that doesn’t have to be hidden away from me for the love of God.
Fat free! Zero points! No calories!

I'm off for another dreamy bath full of honey-marshmallow bubbles.

Oh - hang on - my snack.

A girl's gotta eat!

Friday, September 21, 2012

It's my hair in a box.

I am a go-to-the-salon-get-my-hair-cut-and-colored-kind-of-girl.
That’s just the way it is.

I LOVE my stylist, Jeff.
He is cute. He makes me laugh.
He has a little 80's picture of Scott Baio at his station.
Jeff is awesome.

As I have gone part time at my day job (YAY!) there have been a few things I have been forced kicking and screaming to give up (BOO!) or...find a cheaper version of.

For example:

Manicures – My at home mani skills are now pretty damn impressive, if I do say so myself.

Foofy coffee drinks – I’ll gladly drink the drip in the break room.
  Well, I was more “glad” with my latte, but, whatever.

Lunch hour trips to Nordstrom/Sephora – Yeah, um, bye-bye.

But the one thing, ONE THING I said I would never let go of, no matter how rough things got, was my time with Jeff. Surely color from a box couldn’t be as good. And surely I would wreck it somehow, like in ninth grade when my girlfriends and I put henna in our hair and I ended up looking like a deranged clown.

I had let my cut and color appointment with Jeff pass me by, I cancelled it due to lack of funds. I didn’t want to be stupid and put it on my credit card; I was going to wait until I could afford it. That is until I went and visited my mom the other night.

I was sitting on her front porch and she was standing above me.

“LORI, what is that in your hair?”

From her tone of voice I thought I had a tarantula, or seriously, something worse on top of my head.

“Is that gray? I HAD NO IDEA you were that gray!”

I couldn’t wait one minute more.
I needed a fix now. Fast.
Based on mom’s reaction, like, yesterday.

I strolled the hair color aisle at Fred Meyer like a kid in a candy store for the first time. So much to choose from, jeez. I was drawn to Feria, by L’Oreal because of the hip/BeyoncĂ© factor. But right next door to it lived the Excellence Creme, with a big old gold shiny box slapped on the front claiming “SUPERIOR GRAY COVERAGE.”

Excellence Creme was clearly just what the doctor ordered.

Party time. Excellence.

So last rockin’ Saturday night, instead of my glass of wine with Jeff, I had my bottle of beer at home as I set out to color my hair.

It was easy! I felt like a little scientist, putting on my plastic gloves, mixing up my stinky chemicals, and slapping it on top of all that "sparkle".

Here is the result:

Look ma - no roots!

A little darker than the pretty lady sporting the "Dark Golden Brown" on the front of the box, but we're going into fall, right? Plus I had just come off of a Real Housewives of New Jersey marathon, so covering my roots made me feel close to my roots.

Co-workers and friends gave me the usual, “You got your hair done, it looks great!”

Why yes, yes I did get my hair done.
For six-dollars-and-ninety-nine cents.
With a two-dollar-off coupon.

I am seeing Jeff tomorrow for a haircut – there are certain things a girl just shouldn’t have to give up.

Because just like BeyoncĂ© - I’m worth it.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Wax on, wax off, just please don't wax all the way off.

If I had the time, could find the energy, and made the effort I could totally be one of those crazy extreme coupon ladies who goes to the grocery store and buys $273 worth of stuff and ends up paying one cent. Or better yet, have the store owe me money - I never quite understand how that works out - those crazy coupon ladies are SMART.

The "stockpiles" the coupon ladies have all seem to consist of items no one would ever need in bulk. Like Vitamin Water. Or Glade Plug-Ins. Or Cinnabon Cereal. Nobody needs 900 of any of these things. And I like to get out once in a while, I don't really want to grocery shop in my basement.

But, if you've followed me or read any of my previous posts, you know I do tend to love a good deal. A coupon. A freebie.

Imagine my excitement when I saw this sticker on the front page of the newspaper in the employee kitchen at work:

I ripped that puppy off before any of my co-workers could get to it (like anyone would have fought me for it) thinking to myself, "Hah - I'm the winner!" I was Charlie Bucket - I found the GOLDEN TICKET!

Fast-forward to the day of my appointment at the fancy-schmancy new European Wax Center. I had decided to go for a bikini wax. Why? No I'm not putting on a bathing suit anytime soon - it's free.

The day of my free service, I had drove all over, back and forth over bridges, downtown to work, to school to pick up child #1, then back downtown to get child #2. I was going back over the bridge for the umpteenth time to drop them at home. I couldn't wait to get to my bikini wax. This was going to be my "me" time. Yes, some relaxing me time..

Because having hair ripped from my pubic area will be more relaxing than this:

This went on for twenty-something minutes.

Back over the bridge by myself - as I stepped into the European Wax Center I noticed it had a stark-white glow to it. Almost like a doctor's office. Or like a scene from A Clockwork Orange. Oh, and this picture was all over the place.

This couple clearly enjoys a good wax.

I was greeted and given the run down on this fancy wax, told how it was from Europe (which I had gathered) and how I could save hundreds of dollars if I were to purchase a years worth of body waxing services today.

I said I would think about it.

My wax-lady came out to meet me, her name was Paula. She was a short dark-haired Asian woman who was wearing what appeared to be medical scrubs.


She lead me down a narrow hall into a room that had a table and her waxing supplies. She asked me if I was interested in a Brazilian wax and I laughed nervously blurting out a gigantic NO. She giggled at me and told me I needed to relax.

I hadn't even taken my pants off yet. Or even set my purse down.

She told me to disrobe from the waist down. I asked where the little paper undies are, that you put on when you get a bikini wax, to cover your cookie.

She said, "We don't have those, it's all right."


I know it's silly but I wanted that thin layer of something between my business and this person I met two-minutes ago. I waited a moment for her to leave the room so I could get to "disrobing" when she turned around and said, "Go ahead!"

"Oh, you don't leave?" I asked.



I quickly took off my shoes, pants, and undies and laid them in a heap on a stool with my purse. Then I jumped up on the table again wishing I had a towel. OR SOME PAPER UNDIES.

"Ok now," said Paula, "Make your legs like in a butterfly position, you know what I mean? Like put the soles of your feet together."

So I did. I'm sure people get this done everyday but it all felt a bit weird to me. I'm naked from the waist down in front of a stranger. Who isn't a doctor, but she's kind of dressed like one. And she's giving my vagina the once over, you know, coming up with a game plan.

"You sure you don't want a Brazilian, I do it up real nice for you."

"NO" I stress again. Now I am getting worried.

She was touting the benefits of the special European wax as she applied it to my bikini line. It felt extra hot and I tensed up and started to do that crazy nervous-wax-laugh that I get, when I know what goes on must also get ripped off.

Again, she told me to CALM DOWN. I think she was getting annoyed as I rambled on and on about just doing a little, not a lot, and continued to laugh.

She continued her work with the hot purple wax (it was purple!) but I have to admit not once did I look down to say, "yeah that looks great" or nod approvingly. I just wanted this wax job over with.

By the time we were done I think she was ready to say goodbye to me as well. Again, she doesn't leave the room for me to get dressed, so I stand up, wobbly and off, trying to look as put-together as possible while putting my underwear on and teetering on heels after having what felt like minor surgery. I sneak a glimpse in the mirror and I am glowing red.

Outside as I am leaving I have to laugh out loud as I notice this:

Is right next to this:

Never in my life has anything made so much sense.

Friday, September 7, 2012

A-B-C, easy as 1-2-3.

It’s back to school week!

Even if you don’t have kids, surely you know this based upon a few things:

  • The back to school aisle has been up at Target since before the Fourth of July.
  • End cap placement in grocery store of juice boxes.
  • The bombardment of “First Day!” photos in your Facebook feed.

Growing up I was always so excited for the first day of school – I planned for it like a bride in preparation of her big day.

In elementary school I loved school and I loved my teachers; I wanted to impress them. I would bring them presents - little things like cookies that my mom and I would bake together or a googly-eyed pom pom with big feet to set on their desks.

I loved getting new things to start the school year off right – like a new Trapper Keeper, a big three-ring denim binder, new pee-chee folders, the perfect lunch box (a school girl’s standout accessory) and most importantly - new clothes.

I loved art and reading - I wasn't so interested in science or math.
I was also super-interested in knee socks, barrettes, and shiny new Mary-Jane's.

A few first day of school outfits are permanently burned into my memory. I can still smell the leather of the shoes and feel the way the brass button slipped into the clasp on my jumper.

The planning of the "first day" outfit was incredibly critical in a young girl's life, the night before it was painstakingly laid out in the shape of a dead body on the carpet. The first day outfit could make or break the entire school year. 

First Day of Kindergarten.

Holy hell, every little girl had a little sailor dress in 1976. I felt very sassy in this number. But what I remember the most about this day was the shoes. Brand new from Buster Brown - navy and mud brown sturdy-as-hell little lace up shoes. A pre-cursor to my obsession in the 90's with Doc Martens.

First Grade.

This outfit ruled. I dreamt about getting it and then after I got it I counted down the days on a calendar until I got to put it on. Why? THE SHIRT HAD MATCHING KNEE SOCKS. 'Nuff said. 

Third Grade.

I am mature now. White blouse with puffy sleeves, one of those tiered prairie skirts in a lovely shade of pink, cute open toed sandals and...socks. Yup. Cute Crayola book bag. And my cat Marshmallow, who I tried to take on the bus.

Seventh Grade.

Oh shit, this isn't good. We had just moved to Florida from New York. My mom and I picked out this plaid monstrosity at Beall's Department Store in Northdale Plaza. This is not cute. I remember being pretty excited about this outfit and thinking I looked really good. I also remember wearing nylons with Keds sneakers that day.
Really not good.

Eighth Grade.

Things are not improving. Mouth full of braces, slutty make up, cheap, white blouse with elephant-gray not flattering old lady skirt. PERFECT! I like how my parents thought "the gutter" was the perfect place to snap a first day pic. At least I didn't have to wear a tie, like my brother - we look thrilled.

Senior Year.

Here I go, car keys in hand, highly annoyed that my picture is being taken and dressed very business-like to go to high school. I'm all St. Elmo's Fire-d out, too cool for school, ready to drive my big brown bitchin' Camaro off into the sunset. A senior - ready to ruuuule the schoooool.

It’s a damn good thing there was no social media/Facebook back in the day. I would have posted outfit after outfit – annoying everyone with the endless possibilities that were available to create the perfect look.

The only upside would have been that someone could have intervened and talked me out of the nylons with the Keds.