Hip-Hop Inspired Fashion: My Adidas

***For a trip down hip-hop memory lane, via the 80's/90's Bronx, be sure to check out my girl Tammy's post Back in the Day.... The Bronx.  While you're at it, get familiar with her many musings on fashion over at A Fendi Bag and a Bad Attitude.  You won't be disappointed!

Here's the inspiration:

Here's the look:

My Two Cents: Why We Should Forgive

I have been dealing with an issue for quite some time now involving forgiveness.  I've been dealing with hurt caused by a loved one's actions (or lack thereof) for way too long, so I've made a proactive choice to stop dealing with it.  Every now and again I don't mind getting in my feelings on the blog, but this one will take some time to discuss further.  But I will share with you guys that I have decided to let the hurt go and forgive that person.  

Some people may think I'm crazy for letting it go and discarding the animosity I have for the person go.  But it's time to move on with my life and get rid of the baggage that being upset with someone can make you carry around.  

Here is my two cents on why I think we should forgive others:
  1. We don't have the right to do otherwise.  God forgives us and He doesn't keep score with how many times we've turned our backs on Him.  He loves us unconditionally and forgives our sins, though we don't deserve it.  In addition to forgiving us, through His grace and mercy, He continues to bless us. So if He forgives us and blesses us abundantly (though we don't give Him nearly enough credit), what room do we have to complain about what we have done for folks who have yet to repay us.  Who are we to hold grudges against someone who has wronged us several years ago (and has probably forgotten what they have done)?  Which leads us to number two.
  2. We're doing it for us, not them.  If any of you are familiar with the "Madea" franchise you probably have heard her give that speech about forgiveness being for ourselves and not for those who have hurt us. Though I may not agree with all things Madea, I do agree with that speech she gave.  Oftentimes we hold grudges against people so hard and for so long, it hardens our hearts.  It makes it hard to let others inside our hearts.  It makes it hard to form healthy relationships with others.  And believe it or not, your grudge probably isn't even affecting the person you're mad at.  You're losing sleep, frowning, and having heart palpitations all while the other person isn't even thinking about you.  So do yourself a favor and give number three a shot.
  3. We could turn that negative experience into something positive.  What doesn't kill us only makes us stronger.  Do you believe that?  Every test and trial we go through gives us strength, endurance, and character.  Has a friend ever betrayed you?  Well instead of mad at that sister, be thankful that she showed you her true colors before she was able to do worse damage.  Has a lover ever broke your heart?  Did you ever think about the fact that he/she might have just been an obstacle in your path to Mr./Mrs. Right?  All I'm trying to say here is that sometimes we have to go through a few things to appreciate the good that comes from it.  That failed friendship might have taught you how to appreciate a good friend.  That failed relationship may have given you time to polish up your own act so that you will be ready to love and appreciate a good mate when he or she comes to you.  No matter what you go through, always try to find a positive way to look at it.  Your heart will thank your mind for it, trust me.

I hope you guys enjoy reading this as much as I enjoyed typing it.  Learning to forgive will definitely be a process, but remembering these three things will help the healing process go smoother.  As always, be encouraged, and thanks for taking the time to read my two cents.

Monday Dose of Diva: Step by Step

I was gonna wait until next week to give you guys a dose of diva, but then I heard a song by one of my favorite divas as a child just now.  Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this is Miss Whitney Houston.  She had one of the most amazing voices I had ever heard.  To be quite honest, one of the main reasons I watch The Bodyguard is for the wonderful soundtrack.

Anyways, I was rummaging around for my Preacher's Wife soundtrack, as it is one of my favorite albums. I found it and immediately went to the track titled "Step by Step".  After I heard it, I felt so inspired and so eager to press forward, no matter what was going on in my life or mind.  That's why I wanted to share it with you guys in hopes that it would inspire one of you, too!


Where is Whitney these days?  Wherever she is and whatever she's doing, I hope she's okay.  I miss her and those soulful grooves she used to bless us with.

Mad About Fuchsia Fashion

Keep A Couple Pink Toes in My Sandals!

Just dropping by to show my appreciation for pink with the crew over at On Wednesdays We Wear Pink since my posts didn't publish on yesterday!

These were yesterday morning's wedges.  I purchased these last year from GoJane.com for about $15-20. 

By yesterday evening I was tired of the wedges.  I got these Steve Madden sandals from Ross for $10.  The polish I used is my favorite pink shade, Sinful Color's Pink Passion (also featured here).

Did you rock a pink nail yesterday or any day this week?  What color are you currently rocking?

Date Night Fashion

Product Rave: Anew Clinical Advanced Dermabrasion System

I've only been using Avon's Anew Clinical Advanced Dermabrasion System for three short weeks, but I'm sold on it!  I've been looking for a product for the longest to help clear up the hyperpigmentation (i.e dark spots) on my face.  Finding the perfect product has been a lot of trial and error for years, because nothing ever really clears them up without drying out my face or giving me an ugly rash.  So I was skeptical about using this product in the beginning.  After reading lots of reviews, I finally got the nerve to try it for myself.  And I'm so glad that I did!

After your nightly cleanse, you are instructed to use this product 2-3 nights a week at each level for 2 weeks. For example, you would use the products 2-3 nights during your first two weeks at Level 1.  After 2 weeks, you would change the dial to level 2 and repeat this process until you reach Level 4.  In total, you are to use this product for 8 weeks for maximum results.

I am currently at the end of my 3rd week using this product.  So far, my face is smoother to the touch and my dark spots have lightened a lot.  They haven't disappeared completely, but they are noticeably fading.  My husband has been asking me for the last two weeks have I been doing something new.  He says I have "a glow or something" lol!

At Level 4 (in about 2-3 weeks) I will be giving you more updates on this product and actual pics of my progress.  This is what the product looks like:

Try the product for yourself by purchasing it at www.youravon.com/alee0230.  It is currently on sale for $20. You can also receive free direct shipping with your online order with a purchase of $30 or more.

NOTE:  Please know that I am honest about every product that I review.  Though I do sell Avon/mark. products, that does not affect my review on their products.  If I like them, I will tell you so.  If I do not like them, I will tell you that too.

Monday Dose of Diva: God in Me

Blog fam, when I think of inspirational divas, the sisters of gospel duo Mary Mary always come to mind.  They seem so real and down to earth that I wish I knew them in real life. I've been a fan of them since their first album Thankful, and I've been singing along with their praises every since.  I had the honor of seeing them live at Women's Empowerment 2009 hosted by Radio One in Raleigh NC and it was such a treat!  They sang so beautifully, making so many of us stand to our feet and worship through song.  They also shared pearls of wisdom that I still hold in my heart to this day.

Sisters Erica and Tina showed me not to be afraid to share my joy and love for my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  They also showed me that when God is working and moving in your life, the people around you will be able to see your light shining.  Once the people around us recognize that light we have in us, it is our duty to share the good news and the power God has to use us all in marvelous ways.

Check out one of my faves by Mary Mary from one of my all-time favorite albums The Sound:  Yes it's the God in Me!

What is your favorite Mary Mary song?  When you think of inspirational divas, who comes to mind?

August Beauty Faves

These are the products that I couldn't get enough of in August.  They are all listed in clockwise order below:
  1. Ruby Kisses Magic Eyeshadow Primer (surprisingly just as good as my UD Primer Potion)
  2. Avon Perfect Wear Foundation in Toffee (my absolute favorite foundation of all time)
  3. I-Mark Eyeshadows (specifically the new metallic shade "Jazzy" on the far left)
  4. MAC Lipstick in Up The Amp (my new favorite lipstick... OMG I am in LOVE!)
  5. NARS Blush in Taj Mahal (one of my favorite blushes in the whole wide world lol)
  6. NYX Powder Blush in Cinnamon (such a beautiful color!)
Here's me with the NARS Taj Mahal Blush

And here's a close-up featuring the MAC Up The Amp Lipstick

What are your current beauty faves?

My Hair Craves...

Since I never talk about my hair journey here on my blog I've decided to share with you guys a few of my favorite products.  I've been on my healthy hair journey for a little over a year and these are some of the products that my hair can't seem to get enough of!

  1. Herbal Essences Long Term Relationship Split-End Leave-In Protector-  I use this product as a moisturizer and my hair absolutely loves it!  The product isn't heavy nor does it weigh my hair down.  It is also very affordable and can be found almost anywhere.  I also like the light, clean scent of the protector.  I have to stay stocked up on this!
  2. ORS Olive Oil Replenishing Conditioner-  First of all I love the citrus-y scent of this conditioner.  I use this to deep condition my hair at least once a week.  It also gives my hair good slip when I rinse it out.  No tangles makes for a very happy Dre :)
  3. Hair One Hair Cleanser and Conditioner (for Dry Hair)-  Though it doesn't make suds like regular shampoo, it definitely gets the job done as far as cleansing goes. It has a light scent and has a nice creamy consistency (sort of like that of the LTR).  I also love that this product is sulfate free!
  4. Aphogee Keratin 2 Minute Reconstructor- This is how I get my protein fix! It makes my hair so strong that I hardly experience any shedding while styling my hair now.  
  5. Castor Oil-  If anything has helped with thickening my hair, castor oil definitely has.  I use it for scalp massages, in my deep conditioning, and sometimes on my edges.  Castor Oil is my favorite oil to use in my hair.
  6. Garnier Fructis Nutrient Spray-  This spray gives my hair shine and the nutrients it needs.  It contains olive oil, avocado oil and shea oil.  It has such a refreshing smell, too!  I spray it on my hair after I wash/condition, after I moisturize and on my scalp for light moisture.
Have you tried any of these products?  What products do you have in your healthy hair arsenal?
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