#NationalLipstickDay!

30 Jul

Julylipslipbag

How did I miss it?? How could I miss it? Yesterday was National Lipstick Day! It’s funny these days because there’s a day for just about everything. Take for instance today is National Cheesecake Day…I’m not that excited about that. Anyhow…this will be quick, in honor of lipstick day, here’s what I have in my bag for July (I know it’s alot):

* Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in 92 Emotion
* Dior Lip GLow
* Nars Lipgloss in Stella
* Naked Lipgloss in Streaklips
* Laura Mercier Lipgloss in Brownberry
* Maybelline Baby Lips in Cherry Me
* Burts Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Rose
* Chapstick

As you can tell, I stay lighter in the summer with tinted lipbalms and glosses. All of these can be found at Sephora or even the drugstore. It’s almost August-Eeeek!! Cheers!

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The Sky

27 Jul

sky
Have you ever stopped and all of a sudden looked at something and seen it in a completely different way? I have always been in awe of large birds, the way they float in the sky and soar. A few months ago while watching a hawk over my house my eyes went beyond the bird and saw the sky. Now, this is going to sound cheesy maybe, but I fell in love… with the sky. I was talking about this with a friend of mine and my eyes actually filled with tears (thanks Jill for not looking at me like I was crazy). When I look at the sky I see endless beauty. Every day it’s different, the clouds add depth and character. On the cloudy and rainy days, the sky turns color and you always know that just beyond the clouds and rain, the sun and stars are still there. It’s truly beautiful and inspiring, and for me right now, a symbol of hope for a future looking at the unknown but with unlimited possibilities. I read this quote which is true ‘We think too small, like the frog at the bottom of the well. He thinks the sky is only as big as the top of the well. If he surfaced, he would have an entirely different view.’~Mao Zedong. It sounds crazy but I have an entirely different view and it’s amazing. Every day most of us do the same thing, life can turn into a routine but what are we missing? Look around, open your eyes, play some music because life is better with a soundtrack. By the way, the song Fly On by Coldplay is a great one to listen to while looking at the sky.sunsetsky

Today I keep it simple and use Naked Ultra Nourishing Lip Gloss in Streak which is a coral peach. I LOVE this gloss. It’s a gloss/balm so it doesn’t just sit on your lips. It feels light and moisturizing and this just gives a hint of color. The coral peach of Streak brightens your face a little and is just pretty. Life is cool, don’t miss it, cheers!

The Tree

20 Jul

AWface
I have been in sales a very long time. I have had a slew of different customers but sometimes in my job I end up seeing the same ones based on territory or product. I recently visited an office that I haven’t been to in at least 12 years. My customers here were some of the friendliest I’ve had. I remember them taking the time to get to know me and talk to me, and really help me with my job in general. I knew that one of the partners had passed away awhile back but I was excited to see the other one again. Walking in, there were all new people, new partners, new atmosphere and with the changes in the Detroit economy I figured maybe the other partner had moved. I introduced myself and did business as usual and before I got back into my car I noticed the tree in front of my parking space had a ribbon and a plaque. I was overcome with grief as I read the plaque and it stated that the younger partner had passed away just a couple years ago with cancer. He was just a few years older than me when he died. I got into my car and cried not because I was super close to him, but because I remember his kindness, helpfulness, and joyful spirit; I remember his huge smile as he gave me a tour of his office and introduced me to everyone. I was mostly sad because he was so young; it was another reminder that life is incredibly short and that we never know what the future holds or how long that future exactly is for each of us.

This weekend I brought my kids to my old neighborhood in Detroit and volunteered with a great organization that is helping revive this corner of the city. We helped clean up a yard for a home which will welcome a family and also worked in the community garden. I lived a block away from the worksites and was overwhelmed with (good) memories and also a bit of sadness over how things had changed so drastically in a short amount of time. We passed my elementary school which is now an abandoned, graffiti ridden building and it was difficult to see. Again, a stark reminder of how quickly time passes and how we never know what the future holds. The beautiful thing about the future is that it happens one day at a time and no, we are not guaranteed an amount but every single day we get a chance to make a difference, and make things better. At the very least we have the chance to make the lives of those we encounter great for that day. I will never forget the way my customer treated me those times that we interacted, although he is gone, my memories of him are great. I will not forget the happy times in my old neighborhood and hope that a new family will have great memories there too. We have one life to live and share with others, what memories will you leave?photo

Today I wear Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter lipstick in Wild Watermelon. These are by far my most favorite drug store lipstick. They are shiny, buttery, and have great color. This color is a bright orange-red and I love the name for summer…wild watermelon, yum!!

The Book

16 Jul

Me Before You
I finally did it. It’s been at least a year and I’m embarrassed to even say it out loud. I finally finished reading a novel cover to cover. I love to read or at least I used to. In fact, for a very long time I would read 3-4 books a week, I even led a book club for several years, but for whatever reason (Candy Crush), it came to a screeching halt. Now, I will say I’ve read articles, magazines, short books, but none longer than about a 100 pages. I can’t place all the blame on Candy Crush, there’s Two Dots too (just kidding), but honestly because of all the personal craziness of my life over the past year, I have been drawn to brainless activity at the end of the day, not even wanting to involve myself in the drama of fictional lives. I had forgotten how enriched you can feel after reading a good book, how the characters can jump out at you and open thoughts and emotions, the feeling of getting to know them and wanting to know what’s next. I just finished reading Me Before You by Jojo Moyes and I actually cried (hardly ever happens to me). There were a few quotes (among many) that stood out to me, ‘The thing about being catapulted into a whole new life…is that it forces you to rethink your idea of who you are.’ ‘Knowing you still have possibilities is a luxury.’ ‘Just live well. Just live.’ Yes to all.

Over the past few months/years I have been catapulted into a whole new life. Life after cancer, life after divorce, life after whatever…we all have many ‘life afters’ but after each event it does force us to rethink who we are. Some events are bigger than others but surviving through each and knowing that a world of possibilities still exists is an amazing Derbyluxury isn’t it? Isn’t that what it means to survive and move forward? Look upward, look inward, push forward…live well. Sometimes it means trying new things, meeting new people, or going back and doing things you used to love but lost along the way. I watched Roller Derby (which I loved), I’ve gone dancing, I’ve watched concerts and musicals, and I have met some amazing new people as well as reconnected with friends I haven’t seen in awhile, and yes, I’m reading again and the list of unread books in my Kindle is crazy long. Who knows, maybe I’ll try to sing again somewhere too….In the meantime, back to books, back to people, and ultimately back to Anna.

Today I wear Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick in Lavender which is a bright purply orchid color. I bought this because orchid was THE color at the start of the season and this orchid packs a punch! These lipsticks are highly pigmented but not too drying and supposedly have anti-aging benefits. All I know is that this color brings out my inner ninja…k’pow!!

I Lived

8 Jul

I,I did it all
I, I did it allkoy
I owned every second
That this world could give
I saw so many places
The things that I did
Yeah, with every broken bone
I swear I lived-I Lived~One Republic

I spent the weekend with my family in New York visiting with my brother and just enjoying the city. We were able to pack in lots of food, shopping, and watching my brother’s show in just 3 short days. I even went out with him and a few friends for ‘adult time’ after the show. I spoke with one of his friends ‘C’ for a long time and was inspired by her. She’s a beautiful, strong, funny, outspoken singer/dancer/actor/black belt in karate chic who’s also divorced. I found her inspiring because she had so much life in her eyes, she was excited about where she was, what she was doing, and just plain living. She said she surrounds herself with people that give her life. I love that! I have been accused at times for being too positive and not really being able to express my disappointments or fears, well, work in progress, but do we really need more negative? Here’s the truth, life can be hard and ugly and disappointing; it’s not always how you want it to be but I have faith and trust in God that it’s how it should be sometimes. I have had enough ugly to fill several lifetimes which I may or may not write about, but I am choosing to live and I haven’t felt this alive in a while.

It has been 6 years since my first bout with cancer and although at times the battle was rough, it strengthened me. I recently did an interview and was asked how I think cancer has changed me. We are all affected differently because we all handle obstacles differently, but I’m sure there are commonalities amongst all survivors. Cancer has made me stronger, less fearful, more open, more excited about life, more passionate, less stressed about the things that don’t matter and more dedicated to the things that do. Surviving gives me a feeling of a life unfinished…so many things to do and so many places to see and I also continue to surround myself with people that give me life and not drama! I was asked if I ever sunsetfelt depressed, or maybe fearful of the cancer coming back. Of course, ask any survivor the same question and you’ll get the same answer…cancer’s always on the mind. There were also the times when cancer came back that I was just plain tired of the fight but that’s when I pulled my bootstraps up and said ‘let’s do this’. Plus, having kids made me want to fight even harder. I don’t blame cancer on anyone. For me, it was a dumb abnormal cell in my neck that multiplied and wouldn’t go away for awhile, and why not me? I have an awesome team of doctors that I’ve seen on a regular basis and they have all commented on my strength and even keel. I was and am fortunate to have many people who support me and I don’t like to dwell. Depression or PTSD is not something I’ve struggled with but with any serious illness, it’s normal if you do. I do still hold my breath with every test, but I have to say that if you’ve been reading my blog for some time, that strength does not come from me but from my faith in God and the knowledge that He has a magnificent plan whether we see it or not…(and it may not be exactly what we planned either). Cancer changes your life but it can’t conquer your spirit. There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.~Albert Einstein

I quoted that One Republic song at the beginning because it’s awesome. At the end of it all I want to say that I owned every second this world could give, I lived. Today I wear Marc Jacobs Lip Gel in Strange Magic which is a warm nude pink. These lipsticks feel a little different on the lips, I’m still trying to figure them out. They’re really light on the lips but have lots of color. It says they’re long lasting but after eating I find you have to reapply. I’m not going to lie, I only picked this one for the name because life is like strange magic but I do own the color Voila which is like a magenta/red. Live life, cheers!

Unstoppable

29 Jun

Hour Party
It’s been a good week, no, a spectacular week. Time passes so quickly it’s hard to remember what I’ve already written about. Did I mention I saw Bruno Mars live about a week ago? If you’ve been reading awhile you know I love him (refer to my Bruno Mars blog). Anyhow, Monday I had the ultrasound on my neck and lymph nodes and it was clean! Since I’ve had cancer a few times I didn’t believe him initially but accepted it, then of course the other thought in my mind was that maybe the cancer wasn’t in my neck, maybe it was somewhere else he couldn’t see (I hate that cancer did that to my otherwise positive brain). Later in the week I got my blood work back (this is the special test that takes three weeks for the results). My doctor called and basically said, ‘we got the best results, the results are perfect.’ Double whammy, clean scan, clean blood. That combo has not happened to me EVER. There’s always an ‘I’m not sure’, ‘maybe another PET scan’,’blood work is questionable’, not this time!! Can you tell I’m excited? Can’t wipe the smile off my face. Did you notice how my doctor said ‘we’? Here’s another beautiful part about this journey, seeing my doctors consistently over almost 6 years now has made them family. I love them and now we have become truly a ‘we’, hard to explain. Ended the week with an interview for a magazine and The Hour Detroit Magazine’s Best of Detroit Party which was fantastic and an awesome way to end the week in celebration.Best Of Detroit

yellowThere’s something in the air that seems different to me, palpable. What does change feel like? Summer. When that warm breeze hits your face and the sun is shining so bright you can barely open your eyes, but even with eyes closed you can see the glow of the sun and feel it’s heat on you. There’s that smell of trees, grass, flowers and fruit (and sweat) in the air. The knowledge that even in the worst summer storms, the sun is still just above the clouds waiting to burst out. That is how I have been feeling for a while, slightly behind the clouds waitiing to burst out and shine. Well, here I am. I know the future is never guaranteed but I am loving life and feeling a bit unstoppable, pushing forward one day at a time with hope and excitement, knowing God is in control. Eyes, heart, and arms wide open, thank you for being with me on this journey!

Today’s lipstick is the combo I used above for the Hour Detroit party, Nars Satin Lip Pencil in Palais Royal and Nars Lip Gloss in Stella. The lip pencil is creamy and stayed on all night like a stain. The gloss can be worn alone and on the lipstick. Nars recently reformulated their glosses and they’re awesome. Not too sticky or heavy with just the right amount of color! Be excited about life, Cheers!!

It’s Time

22 Jun

DLA2
It’s time…those words are said for a lot of different things; to give birth, to say good-bye, for an interview or audition, surgery, prom. A few times a year I get a couple postcards with ‘It’s Time’ printed on it, one from my dentist and one from my doctor. Well, it’s that time of year again. All the blood work and check ups are happening now. Actually, I had my blood test done a couple of weeks ago but because I need the special blood work for rare cases like me, they send it out and I wait (hopefully just one more week). Tomorrow I get a neck ultrasound and pray there’s nothing but scar tissue. Officially it has been over three years (with a few bumps along the way) and honestly I am starting to feel unstoppable. It’s been a difficult year in general for many reasons but I continue looking ahead with excitement and hope for whatever life may bring, good or bad, and I’m unbelievably grateful for each moment I’ve had so far.

I’ve heard it said that friendships lasting beyond 7 years are friendships for life. I’m a believer. Through cancer and divorce, my lifelong friends have really pulled through despite sometimes the obstacle of geography. Here’s the thing about really great friends, they really know you; they know your heart and character and believe and support you no matter what. Adversity and how you handle it usually shows your true nature, Ginathey’ve seen my core and know it hasn’t changed. Over the past couple weeks I’ve had a chance to reunite with several friends from my past including one that I’ve known over 30 years, and it’s been awesome. Reuniting with friends from the past reminds you who you once were and the things you loved to do and it also reminds you a little of how DLAyou’ve changed…lots of laughing for sure. I’ve also met a few new people who I already know will be around awhile! Saw this on the internet about friend reunions and it’s all true:20 Great Joys of Reuniting With Old Friends. Life is fun, exciting, sad, exhausting, and exhilarating with all it’s twists and turns but it’s even better with great friends to ride the roller coaster with! “Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.”― Mark Twain

Today I wear Nars Lipgloss in Wonder. These lipglosses are moisturizing and don’t feel too heavy or sticky on your lips. This particular color is a sheer wash of mandarin orange with gold specks which looks great on tanned skin (which of course I have year round). It’s a great color for summer and it’s got a great name…look at the world with wonder and you’ll continue being amazed! Cheers!

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