Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Shameless self-promotion

I don't have "sponsors" for this blog but from time to time I do plug certain brands or businesses simply because I like them.
Not because they are paying for ad space or have given me kick backs.
Not saying that I'm opposed to that ( Hear that Target, Nordstrom, Smashbox and M.A.C??)
But having said that I have to do some shameless plugging for ME for once!
Many of you know that I am a makeup artist in my "spare time" and have been honing my skills for the better part of the last decade. 
Well this year I plan to take my business to a whole new level and that's where YOU come in!
So please go to Facebook (you're going to check it in 20 minutes anyway if you're not already logged on)  
and "Like"my business page 
feel free to recommend to all your friends as well!!!
About Sweet Emotions:
Sweet Emotions Makeup Artistry  was conceived by Amber Dorsey  in 2007 and inspired by her love of makeup and all things beauty related. 
Her goal is to create wondrous moments of glamor, educate to keep clients informed and to inspire women to be their very best version of themselves every day.
Sweet Emotions Makeup Artistry  is a full service makeup artistry company dedicated to providing makeup application and education to women of all walks of life, having them recognize the beauty within and helping them to let it shine!

Amber has a strong desire to make women feel beautiful in their own skin and provides a training and education service that teaches women of all ages and races how to apply makeup that compliments not only their complexion but age as well!
Amber has spent the better part of the last decade making up her friends and family for every occasion and finally decided to bring her artistry skills to the public!

This now concludes our P.S.A  - we will resume your regularly scheduled programming.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

late nights, long talks

Oy. What. a. week.
I am completely spent.
But in a good way I guess.
My week/weekend has been full of laughter, love and talking.
Some of my favorite things.
Last week was my "baby's" 9th birthday and I have been kind of an emotional wreck ever since.
My BFF Michelle called to tell me that she would actually be out here on her birthday to deal with some family things and we made tentative plans to get together Monday evening.
Monday came and went w/ no phone call.
Tuesday I text her and received " my dad is on his death bed".
My body went numb.
She left back to CT that Wednesday and I knew something had happened.
Thursday morning Michelle called to tell me that her Dad had passed away.
I've been kind of numb ever since.
I can't even fathom the void she must be feeling.
We were playing phone tag all weekend and I wasn't able to catch up to her until this past Thursday when I found out not only was she back here....but the funeral was on Friday and it was a bit late for me to call off work to attend with her.
I felt/feel terrible about that.
All day long my heart & head were telling me I needed to get to her. ASAP.
Fortunately they weren't leaving until late this afternoon so I was able to spend a few precious hours with her last night ......well into the wee hours of this morning.
There has been so much drama and stress surrounding her father's illness and ultimately his death that his release into the after life has been somewhat of a blessing.
He's no longer suffering and in pain, there's no reason to keep bickering about 'he said vs. she said'.
It's done. Over with. Life can move on now.
And yet - life will never be the same.
My husband was a bit surprised that I was wanting to go out after 8:45pm last night in inclement weather and trek back down to Garden Grove for a visit but I just looked at him and said " If your BFF's parent died and they were only in town for a few days wouldn't YOU be jumping through hoops to get to them?".
He agreed and wished me Godspeed.
It felt great to see Michelle's mom & sister and catch up w/ M's hubby Marc (whom I adore  for a number of reasons) although the circumstances were quite bizarre.
Once her sister and her boyfriend left and her mom dozed off it was just me, Michelle and Marc, just like old times.
And Marc being the great hubby that he is - chatted with us for a bit and then promptly went to bed so she and I could talk. 
One of the many things I love about this guy is his respect for our friendship.
He always seems to know when she and I just need a "moment" and he gives us that.
So we sat in the kitchen - in her parents house as we have so many nights before, drank wine and talked until 3am.
It felt like therapy. There were no tears but the emotion was palpable.
My friend - my ride or die chick needed me.
Not so much to lean on but to purge her mind.
And I was there.
I was willing to stay up all night if necessary so she could get out what she needed to say.
And we pretty much did.
I got home at 4am.
Tired but so happy to have seen and been able to hug my friend.
I don't when I'll get to see her next as her reasons for coming out here will be few and far between.
Looks like we'll be making a trip back east......sooner rather than later......
But it moments like this when I realize what our friendship is.
I looked at her and realized.....wow - our friendship has spanned the last 15+ years of our lives.
We met when we were 15 and we are just as close (if not more so) than we were then.
She knows ME and I KNOW her.
We have been through so much with and for each other.
Dealt with all the random struggles that life threw at us and came out on the other side.
Still great friends, still not judging each other and still needing this relationship.
I honestly don't know what I would do with out this girl in my life.
She is my heart.
Love you 'Chelle.

Please keep the Vandruff family in your prayers during this time.
The passing of Mr. Rick Vandruff was not a sudden shock but it was untimely none-the-less as he had quite the zest and zeal for life and the Lord.
He was not my dad but just a much a part of my teenage years as anything and I am grateful for having known him during his prime.
His memory will live on in our hearts forever.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Featured Writer: Social Skillz

***oh goodness apparently the link below didn't work yesterday!! sorry about that!****

Hey Everyone -
Head on over to TheSmartlySoCal where I'm today's featured writer!

Today's topic - Social Skillz : an ironic at look how social networking has evolved.

Please leave a comment and tell me what you think or what your experience was like as a child!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Happy 9th Birthday Sweet Pea!!!

I am completely exhausted. So tired I can neither think or see straight.
Similar to how I felt on this day 9 years ago.
The day I met my little angel face to face.
I can't believe my "baby" is 9.
Time seems to have flown by yet I can recall every minute, every milestone.
Some with more ease than others.
My life changed forever that day.
I fell so hard.
Unequivocal love.
Entered completely uncharted territory.
And when I look at this little smiling face......
my heart bursts with pride.
I have never known a love like this.
She is my everything.
The reason behind the decisions I make, the actions I take and the things I pursue.
She is my JOY.
My Sweet Pea.

Happy Birthday my love.

She got her hair all done up Saturday morning, and then she celebrated with a small sleepover Saturday night , combined with cake & dinner on Sunday with our Famdamily.
My cup runneth over.
The girls had a GREAT time.
 (Mama is exhausted)
And it was such a treat to see how she's grown in this last year.
She has such a good heart and a generous spirit.
It makes me all teary eyed to see her with her hair all pressed out and curled up.
Baby "bombshell" hair as we call it.
Makes me realize she is no longer a "baby"

or even such a "little kid"

 but really on her way to becoming a young lady.

I can't even deal.
I thank God everyday for this wonderful little blessing.
This amazing reflection of my husband and myself.
She is one-of-a-kind and I am grateful she is mine.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Guilt free Shopping?? I say YES!

If you read this blog often you may remember The Great Shoe Debate when it came time to purchasing shoes for my wedding.
I wanted something cute, stylish and that wasn't going to blow my budget.
It took me forever to finally locate a pair that met all my requirements.
Too bad Sole Society wasn't around then.
As a woman who loves shoes but really can't afford to purchase the "lust-haves"
(you know the ones you see in a magazine and you sigh and swoon and then look at the price tag and fall out of your chair?)
Well for me and many other recessionista's Sole Society is the haven for all my shoe dreams.
The shoes are not only cute and of good quality but they are affordable - which for this workin mama means a LOT!
I don't want to feel guilty about treating myself to something nice and pretty that will make me feel good and Sole Society offers me all of that without the buyer's remorse!
(not to mention avoiding the reproachful eyes of my husband as he glances over the bank statement)
Their free shipping and easy return policy make it a no brainer, not only for me, but many of my friends and family.
And as someone who likes to branch out a bit with their shoe game .....the selections are divine!
As I've stated before....my sartorial tastes are somewhat lackluster but my love for cute shoes is not - but the great thing about this site is that they offer a look at how to style your new shoes so you stay on trend without looking like you're trying to hard!

For example: 

I'm dying for these blue Anouk shoes!!!

already ordered these grey numbers! - Babe approved!
so cute and I hear they're comfy to boot!

 If you're anything like me then you can fully appreciate someone giving you options and ideas for how to 'style your look'.
I would actually wear all three of these looks as they speak to my "Feminine, Bohemian, Trendy" personality style.
I like to be comfortable and cute and have no qualms about rocking a simple tank and jeans with some KILLER heels to spice things up.
In fact, that's one thing my Babe digs about my "style" - I still look 'normal' from head to ankle but south of my ankles......it's a party y'all!

So if you haven't already signed up
(really???? what's stopping you? it's FREE to join!)
Click HERE and be one step closer to fierce footwear!!

I've already bought two pair and am going to go ahead and treat myself to two more!!!
No guilt here!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Featured Today - Trainspotting

I'm today's featured writer on TheSmartlySocal

I'd love it if you popped over , checked out the essay and left me a comment on today's essay:

Trainspotting : one woman's journey on public transportation

Tell me what you think about public transportation in this time of ridiculously high gas prices!!!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Rocked to the core

credit: Google images
Awhile back I mentioned wanting to go see Tyler Perry's adaptation of the famed stage play
"For Colored Girls" with a bunch of girlfriends. 
For whatever reason - that never happened and Sunday night was my first time viewing it.
I am forever changed.
I admit I was a bit skeptical at first as I heard /read mixed reviews and comments from friends. I've also seen the play several times and read the book adaptation in college as well and am a HUGE fan of Ntozake Shange- the author.
Her words (to me) are like music and seem to dance off each page so I was unsure of how Tyler was going to reproduce that because the play is comprised of monologues/tales  from each of the 'colored' women.
I even have a few of them committed to memory as I helped a college friend learn the lines when our school was putting it on and the words were so strong they have since remained with me.

****A brief synopsis from Wikipedia:******
Structurally, For Colored Girls is a series of 20 poems, collectively called a "choreopoem." Shange's poetry expresses the many struggles and obstacles that African-American women face throughout their lives. It is performed by a cast of seven women characters, each of whom is known only by a color: "Lady in Yellow," "Lady in Purple," etc. The poems deal with love, abandonment, rape, and abortion, embodied by each woman's story, e.g. Lady in Blue's visceral account of a woman who chooses to have an abortion, and Lady in Red's tale of domestic violence. The end of the play brings together all of the women for "a laying on of hands," in which Shange evokes the power of womanhood as the Lady in Red begins the mantra "I found God in myself/and I loved her/I loved her fiercely."
credit: Google Images

This movie took me through the full range of my emotions in the span of the 2.5 hours.
I laughed (well chuckled) , I cried, I screamed bloody murder - no joke; Babe came running down the hall because he heard me and found me sobbing hysterically.
I was shaken where I sat.
But most of all - I felt and related. Not in the specific 'oh this is happening/has happened to me' but in an 'oh my word - I GET it' kind of way.
It was serious & provocative, heart wrenching and thought provoking.
In short - I LOVED it.
There were parts that were disturbing and I probably should not have watched it so close to bedtime as I was haunted by these women all night.
The women in this film have left a mark on my heart as well as my psyche.
A lot of people didn't care for it and thought it was negative.
And while I can see where they are coming from.....I for one did not once feel that way.
For me- it was truth.  And sometimes the truth is ugly and there's not always a way to tie that up in a pretty little package and put a happy face on it at the end.
One of the themes that resonated with me is that you NEVER know what another woman is going through. No matter how much you see them and think you know. You just truly have no idea.
No, there was no "happy ending" nor did the characters have that life altering moment of redemption nor were you shown their redemption. But you felt it.
In the end they learned who they were, accepted it and chose to move forward.
They also came together as women to support one another and 'lay hands' on each other.
Which for black women is sometimes hard to do. Letting our guard down is tantamount to showing weakness and we can never let that happen.
At the end of the day whether you liked the movie or not - it made you think.  It got you talking about the issues we face as a community and that was it's intended purpose.
It changed my  perspective and made me want to reach out to all my girlfriends and wrap my arms around them and tell them I love them and that they are special and beautiful and amazing creatures. All of them.
Now I did not see all the Oscar nominated films nor do I care to, but I do believe that at least some of these actresses deserve some kind of award as does Mr. Perry.
The performances were earth shattering. His script moving.
He really hit it out of the park with this one and my expectations for what he produces has gone up tenfold.
So, please don't let me down Tyler - us 'colored girls' are depending on you.


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