Fantastic Voyage?

This past weekend I went to a time warp party. Had I known it was a time warp party I would have stayed home, but they disguised it as old school so off I went. I even put together a cd of old school hits to get me in the mood as I drove to the party, reminiscing to Heavy D, Doug E. Fresh, Guy and Eric B. and Rakim. Imagine my surprise when I stepped into the time capsule and the DJ was playing Midas Touch (touch, touch, touch). It got worse, D. Train, Colonel Abrams, Kashif (he was alright) and basically the B side from every 2 hit wonder post Motown and pre hip hop.

Okay, so I walked in to the wrong decade, but when I think of oldies, I’m not thinking about the songs I heard when I could actually stand up in the back of my uncle’s ’98. I’m thinking more along the lines of when I got my learner’s permit. I think people my age who are still young, but undeniably grown, are afraid to admit that yes, Control was a “back in the day jam”. I think it is a game of denial. We are still trying to narrowly define oldies as our parent’s music to keep from admitting we are grown folk. These old school parties could be fun if we’d stop only playing the songs that we had to listen to when our feet wouldn’t touch the floor in the back seat of that Cutlass Supreme. We had absolutely no control over the radio, which is why I know the words to all of Al Jarreau and George Benson’s songs (you don’t appreciate great artist like them until a few years after graduation, your first break up and a call from a bill collector).

Or maybe we don’t appreciate the great music we had. Yes, I said great. When our parents put on those Motown songs they were so proud and would dance with such energy about back in the day. Do we not appreciate the music of our generation? Are we too razzled, dazzled, and suffocated by the swagger of what’s in rotation now? I like today’s artist. What I listen to now will forever be in my grown folks music file as the O’Jays and Earth Wind and Fire were for our parents. But the truth is, I don’t care what today’s artist do now, how I nod my head, or how many CD’s I download it doesn’t speak to me the way my coming of age music did. The generation behind us will feel the same way. Remember when Janet did that 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 countdown in Rhythm Nation-brings back memories…and when she jumped over that chair in Pleasure Principle, you haven’t felt that from anybody in a video since. If you can remember any of these artist I’m talking about, then you know there has been no other boy group worth mentioning since New Edition. I don’t care how synchronized they are or how many hand stands they do, it is not the same as Ralph, Ronnie, Ricky and Mike (did I miss one)? And remember Lisa Lisa? If we don’t appreciate us, who will?

Contrary to what some think, I am not anti “oldie” oldies. But if you’re going to go there, go there: Rick James, Tina Marie, or Frankie Beverly and Maze. They didn’t even play the national black anthem, Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now. Truth be told, I still had a good time. The conversation was good. I danced, I laughed and I made a few other people laugh. I left the party grateful that the artist played will not release a greatest hits CD and glad to get back to the future.

How was your weekend?

Red Carpet Oscar Glam

The 81st annual Oscar Awards just wrapped not long ago. There were some nice performances and new presentation styles. I thought Hugh Jackman did a great job with the scaled back opening. I loved the previous winners presenting tonight’s winners-good move-Halle was stunning. But overall I just wasn’t thrilled. I was really hoping Taraji would win. But hey, she was front and center and I know the best is yet to come for her as an actress.

I was also happy for Viola Davis’ nomination for her supporting role in Doubt. Who knew she was so glamorous before this Awards season. And she also had a role in Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes To Jail alongside Derek Luke. Remember, she played his mother in The Antwoine Fisher Story?

As for the fashions of the evening, there were some hits and misses as always. I know that taupe and all things beige and metal are in, but I’d like to caution that it’s not for everybody. There were some people who pulled it off and some that should have gone with color. Meryl Streep’s gown was elegant but I think color would have suited her better. Tina Fey–ditto. I wasn’t feeling Penelope Cruz’s bridal gown but I did like her acceptance speech. There seemed to be an undercurrent of bridal wear and fairy god-mother fashions tonight. I thought Sarah Jessica Parker’s gown was pretty, but if she’d had a wand…something about it screamed perfume commercial to me. Did she look good? Yes…but that’s just the vibe that the gown gave off. Does she have her fragrance? Maybe she should.

Will Smith presented and looked as handsome as ever. Queen Latifah performed in a Royal Blue gown-gorgeous. As soon as I can get pics from the show, I’ll post. Until then, here’s some snapshots from the red carpet.








And The Winner Is…


The awards season is in full swing and next week will mark the first Rainy Day Diva awards , celebrating the best in fashion, style and beauty. Stay tuned.

If you listen to the Steve Harvey Morning Show you know that he has written his first book, Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man. The book was written based on the popularity of the Strawberry Letter segment on his syndicated morning radio show. I love the Strawberry Letter, where he gives advice to listeners (usually women) who want his perspective of some issue (usually romantic) in their lives. I purchased a copy of this book and it does not disappoint. Now I’ve heard and read many comments from women stating that they are reluctant to read Steve’s book based on what they may have heard about him in past relationships. Well, this book is not advice on relationships. Harvey simply explains how men think, feel and react in relationships. I don’t think many men would be honest and candid enough to really give up this kind of information. If you have ever wondered “why”, “how”, or just shaken your head in frustration after trying to understand your significant other’s point of view, you might want to pick up a copy. Let me know what you think.

Women of Power Part 2.

One thing that I really enjoy about the conference is that they include physical activity. You can choose a morning activity such as the Power Walk or attend the golf and tennis clinics during the day. I however, chose the alternate morning activity–Belly dancing. Dr. Sunyatta of BOCA led the morning classes. She puts the “flex” in flexibility. After learning a few moves we had a belly dancing battle. It was traditional belly dancing with the spirit of hip-hop. You’d have to see it to believe it, but it was so much fun.

Friday morning the conference began with motivational speaker Lisa Nichols. She encouraged us to appreciate our own unique gifts and to keep our eyes open to the blessings that may be right in front of us. “Sometimes our gifts come wrapped in sandpaper.” Lisa related in humorous detail how she always dreamed of appearing on the Oprah Winfrey show to have a one-on-one with Oprah, and to smell the leather on Oprah’s cream leather sofa. She realized her dream of being a guest on the show, but was a bit disappointed that the sofa wasn’t there. Not long after she was approached about having her own talk show and guess what was a part of the set. You got it, a cream leather sofa. Lisa stated tearfully to us that, she had so badly wanted to sit on Oprah’s sofa, when all along God had been trying to give her her own sofa. It was touching, comical and brought home the point that we need to be thankful for the opportunities that we have.

The Power in You was a workshop led by none other than the phenomenal, Carla Harris. She delivered points on how to succeed in the workplace from her book Expect to Win.

Reinvent Yourself was an interesting break out session. One of my favorite points was on mentorship. The idea is that mentorship works both ways. Too often, people want their mentor to be someone older, wiser, and usually at the top of the corporate ladder, but one panelist stated that the way she has developed an edge and been able to stay in tune technically is by allowing younger people to mentor her. They know all that is going on in this digital age and if you want to stay relevant, you might just need some younger friends at the office.

I enjoyed all the workshops, but my aha moment was in a workshop that focused on bringing order to your home by Robin Harmon Myers of Harmony Designs: You live in abundance when there is no excess. That was powerful. I’ll be spending this weekend editing my closets and shredding paper for certain.

That evening Macy’s hosted a fashion show. Khaki seems to be the color for spring and summer paired with hot bold colors like tangerine, turquoise, and magenta.

Finally, the evening ended with a performance by EnVoge. They worked it out. They looked great and sounded even better, sprinkling in songs from artist that inspired them, like Aretha Franklin and Donna Summer along with their own hits. Absolute Harmony. Talk about holding on…EnVogue is doing it.

Tracey Edmonds was a panelist in a workshop on second acts and new beginnings.

Next year’s conference will be back in Palm Springs…get ready.

Women of Power Summit Pt. 1


Black Enterprise’s fourth annual Women of Power Summit,was held in Orlando this year at the Ritz Carlton. I attended several workshops on Thursday, everything from Second Acts and New Beginnings to Surviving for Economic Downturns and as promised, Women and Money:Money Management and Investing.

There were so many good points to share, I really don’t know where to begin. But since I did mention the recession knocking at my door last week, I will say that one of the key points from the Women and Money workshop was changing your relationship with money and how you view money–thinking about your finances in a positive way. Elon Bomani suggested we change our mindset from one of poverty to one of wealth. Stacey Tisdale, suggested, “Get in touch with your priorities.” She noted that our financial goals are often vague. She says we should consider what we want our lives to look like to help us when setting financial goals. Otherwise, we spend a lot of time on things that aren’t important. Earlier in the day, Paula Madison, Executive Vice President of Diversity for NBC, cautioned us to not define ourselves by our job titles, stating that as the beginning of losing one’s self. Instead she suggested we focus on defining success for ourselves.

The Women of Power summit is encouraging and inspiring. And after all that inspiration, I made my way to the Spa for a little rejuvenation by way of massage. Undfortunately, I’m still having a bit of technical difficulty on the pictures front, but I am working on it. More info to come on Friday’s program, including the EnVogue concert.

Lashtastic


If you want long, beautiful lashes and are in need of a new mascara, Christian Dior’s DiorShow Mascara is for you. It really gives you thick, full lashes with unbelievable length. All this without clumps and smudges. Sure, they all promise that but only a few deliver. In fact, I’ve always been real clear on which cosmetics line had the absolute best Mascara-that is until now. Watch out, Lancome. Dior is the new kid in town.

Relax, Relate, Retreat!

I landed safely in the sunshine state yesterday. I traveled to Florida for the 4th annual Women of Power Summit hosted by Black Enterprise magazine. For those of you who don’t know, when I’m not writing or playing in makeup I have a 9 to 5. I am one of the few people that will admit to having a career as a professional dragon fighter. Yes, you read that right. Seriously, I have worked with some great people and great teams, but if you have ever tried navigating your way throuhg the corporate world, dragons (undefined projects, unrealistic deadlines, corrupt politics, and difficult people)come with the territory. Believe me, I have battled every type of dragon-from Puff to Sho Nuff. So I look forward to coming to conference to receive advice, fortification and rejuvenation from the best in the business. So have no fear my fellow cubicle queens, I will keep you posted throughout the conference.

I must say that it has been a particularly stressful week. Not only did I lose my wallet, but the recession,the one that has been all over the news, came to my house. I had heard a few months ago that it was in my neighborhood, but last Monday night, it actually knocked on my door. So, I’ll definitely be front and center for the financial workshops. Stay tuned.

And no you didn’t miss today’s picture. I’m having some technical difficulty, but I promise to have some eye candy for you later.

2009 Grammys

Last night the 51st annual Grammy Awards took place. I was so eager to watch. The Grammy’s is not what it used to be and with so many of my favorite acts performing and presenting I couldn’t wait. Turns out it didn’t quite deliver the excitement I expected. I must congratulate winners Jennifer Hudson who delivered an emotional performance, Ne-Yo, Adele, Al Green, who also gave a good performance with Justin Timberlake, Rick Rubin, Mary J. Blije, Alicia Keys, Chrisette Michele, Estelle (excellent performance of American Boy) and Lil Wayne (shivers).

Jamie Fox, Ne-Yo, Smokey Robinson and Duke Fakir-the surviving member of the Four Tops-did a wonderful job at performing the groups hits like Sugar Pie Honey Bunch (you can’t help but smile when you hear that one).

A highlight for me was my favorite rapper, Mr. LL Cool J, who is set to star in a spin off of NCIS this coming fall. Ladies, that means we get to see him weekly.

There were some noticeable absences: Usher, Chris Brown and Rihanna.

Here are a few pictures from the red carpet.



Oooh Aaah Massage


I love a good massage. But it’s not one of those things that ranks high on the list of necessities. That is unless you have a medical condition and even then it falls way down on the list below, prescriptions and co pays. Well there’s a way to relax, re-align and rejuvenate without blowing your budget-Massage Envy. Massage Envy offers full body massages at the low price of $49 for a one hour session. There are multiple massage therapist to choose from and you can get massages that range from deep tissue to Swedish. Now, this is not the full shabang of a spa experience. It is very basic–you won’t find aromatherapy massage although I believe they may soon offer hot stone treatments.

A friend hipped me to Massage Envy about a year ago. I must admit I was skeptical at first. The idea of a McMassage did not fit into my picture of spa pampering. But after my first appointment, I was pleasantly surprised. Candles, heated massage tables, and soft lighting make for a nice spa-like experience without having to book months in advance or hurt your savings. You can also, join their monthly program which means you get one massage each month at the $49 price and then any additional massages are $39. You can’t beat that. Aside from working the tension out of your neck, shoulders and body, massage helps re-align your body, improve your posture and your circulation.

They sell gift certificates also, so you can share the experience. Enjoy.