Wedding, Engagement Ring Etiquette: What am I supposed to do here?

bridal, wedding, jewelryI love my engagement ring. Granted, I never really wanted one because they are just a marketing ploy by diamond companies to sell diamonds. But the ring Paul gave me is so sparkly and it has a lot of meaning for him, so I love it.

The problem is that I don’t know how much I’m supposed to wear it. Does anyone know proper engagement ring etiquette? When am I supposed to wear it? All the time? Can’t I take it off to clean the dishes and the toilets? What about when I take a shower or go to sleep?

So, of course I googled it.

The problem is that my questions weren’t answered.  I just had new questions. Wait. What am I supposed to do the day of the ceremony? Do I wear my ring on my right hand and then move it after the ceremony? There’s an order to which ring goes first on my hand?

That’s when I realized…fuck it. I’m going to do what I want. I’m going to do what feels practical. I don’t care what anyone else thinks. I just don’t want to ruin the ring or, god forbid, lose it.

I don’t know what I’m going to do at the ceremony. I might wear my engagement ring on my right hand until after the ceremony.  I might wear it on my left and just switch the rings after.  I know I won’t be giving the ring to someone else to hold until the moment in the ceremony when Paul puts the wedding band on my finger. I’m a control freak. If anyone is going to lose the ring, I’d rather it be me. I don’t want to be pissed off at someone when I could have prevented said anger.

If/when you get/got married, what would/will you do with the engagement ring?

They call it witchcraft

Halloween, costumeAs a child, I never wanted to be a princess. I wanted to be a witch. Needless to say, it’s my go to Halloween costume. And no, I don’t need to sex up my witch costume. I’m sexy and I know it.

Even as a teenager (and yes a little as an adult), I was fascinated by witches. They have magic powers. They get shit done. They don’t take crap. Sure they are sometimes evil, but there are evil princesses too. OK, I can’t think of any fictional versions off the top of my head, but I’m sure the image of a princess doesn’t exactly do wonders for female self-image. I mean they are usually in need of rescuing. Witches almost never have to be rescued. They get themselves out of danger most of the time.

Sure, witches have had a bad rap in the annals of history, but isn’t that really just some form of sexism? Aren’t (or hopefully weren’t) people threatened by the idea of a strong woman? I’m not really sure why men (or other women) are threatened by a confident, independent woman, but that seems to be the case throughout most of recorded history.

My favorite example of witchcraft is in the movie Practical Magic. Yes, I’ve read the book. It’s nothing like the movie. I like the idea of a woman who can conjure up things. I like the idea of a woman being able to defend herself. I also like the idea of a bunch of women coming together to help out one who needs it.

I don’t need a fairy godmother. I need a wand. Well, the really good witches didn’t even need wands.

Inappropriate Halloween Costumes: All new wrongness & Star Wars

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Sassy is another word for sexy in costume marketing speak

Why is it that costumes for females are all pretty much the same? I mean for little girls and young teens they are all cutesy. For grown women they are almost all sexy. I even saw a sexy clown costume…what part of a clown is sexy?!? I found it in the Party City circular we received in the mail this past weekend. OK, it says Cotton Candy Clown, but personally, all I can see are her pushed up blue boobs.

So, I’ve been trolling the internet for a female costume that is funny. I saw a Princess Leia for babies that was kind of funny. I mean it had a hat for her bun hairdo. And of course this “Tween Domo Costume” is pretty funny, but they are obviously marketing it to boys even though it’s fairly unisex if you ask me. I did find this peanut butter and jelly costume for two people is good. I mean two friends could be in this “couples” costume. Ugh. A couples costume for kids makes me want to vomit a little. Let’s call it a paired costume… Less sexual innuendo.

You might remember the Sexy (or Sassy) Big Bird disaster of 2010. Thank you for that nightmare, Target.

Now don’t get me wrong. It’s OK for girls’ costumes to be cutesy, but I really wish there was more funny marketed to little girls. I feel like Halloween has been over-sexualized. Is that a word? Regardless, by the time a female grows up and wants to wear a costume, it’s almost as bad as wearing a bathing suit, which in this day and age is mostly a bikini.

Speaking of sexualization…have you seen this Darth Vader costume for women…

This is the costume that sparked this year’s affront to Halloween. First and foremost, I love Star Wars, but this is just wrong. And then I found this Adult X-Wing Fighter Dress…DRESS! Yes, I’m pretty sure any women who were flying X-Wings to fight the oppression of the Empire were wearing DRESSES!

Yes, I know. It’s fiction, but that’s not the point. This is just wrong on so many levels for me. If you want to dress like an X-Wing fighter, wear the jumpsuit, not the dress. If you want to be someone sexy from the Star Wars world, Han is pretty hot in his vest and Leia wore that metal bikini after being captured by Jabba the Hutt. Those are the ONLY acceptable sexy Star Wars costumes.  But, why would you go straight to the sex with Star Wars anyway?!?

Vader is supposed to be frightening, imposing, not sexy. Oh, and they also have sexy Storm Troopers. What’s next? A sexy Chewbacca? A sexy Yoda? George Lucas, what have you done?!?

Partying, Twitter style

Why would you party on Twitter?  Because you can win stuff. It’s obviously BYOB since you are going to be sitting in your home/office/or wherever you log on to the internet. It usually only lasts an hour. It usually is sponsored by a brand and centered on various topics like beauty, travel, wine…right up my alley.

Anyway, last month I participated in one of these parties put on by SheSpeaks.com.  It was all about hair care and sponsored by L’Oreal. Amazingly, I won one of the beauty baskets. You can see the photo below. It was chock full of stuff.  I tried the lip gloss.  It was a color I usually wouldn’t buy, but looked decent on me.

beauty, twitter, prizes, winning

I also tried the shampoo and conditioner. It’s part of the Advanced Haircare Color Vibrancy line from L’Oreal.  Basically, it is formulated for hair that has been color treated. I really liked it and will definitely be putting it into my shampoo/conditioner rotation.  The conditioner really made my hair feel silky.

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Hpnotiq wants you to Bling It On! Show Us Your Glammest Heels and Win

Bling It On Glam Hpnotiq Logo Version 2Love glam? Love fashion? Hpnotiq wants you to show them how you GlamLouder to win fab prizes! From now until July 28th 2013, during each 2-week challenge you can submit photos in different categories to win – including the glammest heels, nails, makeup and overall look. Entries can be pictures you snap yourself or images you find online.

Ready to Bling It On!? You could win one of the glamorous prizes that are up for grabs: One pair of shoes of your choice(Up to $800), One purse of your choice(Up to $1,000), One year of manis/pedis worth up to $1,200, a $1,000 gift card to Sephora or Ulta, AND a chance to win the grand prize trip for you and three friends to go shopping with a celebrity Los Angeles! Even better – the grand prize winner will star in a professional photo shoot for the chance to be in a real Hpnotiq Ad!

Fancy ShoesWant to enter? Hpnotiq’s Glammest Heels Challenge is going on RIGHT NOW – but hurry – the entry period for the glammest heels ends at 11:59:59 a.m. EST on June 16th! For the first challenge, participants are asked to share their latest SHOE CRUSH! Mine are these babies I found while shopping the other day. Hpnotiq wants you to show them the glammest heels you can find. Snap a pic of your own, or find a pic of that pair of shoes online you’ve been stalking for months! For this round, they’re choosing 4 lucky winners to get their choice of glam heels valued at up to $800.

Hpnotiq GlamLouder Bling It On! Bottle ImageTo enter visit Hpnotiq’s GlamLouder site, Hpnotiq’s Facebook page OR follow @Hpnotiq on twitter and tweet them your picture using the hashtag #GLAMLOUDER. If you’re one of the 4 winners, you’ll also be able to compete in the final round for a chance to win a grand prize trip for you and three friends to meet a famous celebrity in LA, for shopping, makeovers AND you might also star in a photo shoot for the chance to be in a real Hpnotiq Ad!

For complete contest rules, please visit this site: http://www.hpnotiq.com/uploads/glamlouder_rules/

Full disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Hpnotiq

Of Birthdays and Happiness

tiara, wine, San Luis Obispo

This year’s tiara will be fancier.

Today, is my birthday. It’s pretty much the best birthday ever. I just wish it didn’t take 39 years to happen. However, I am NOT complaining. Yes, I’m in my last year of my 30s. I remember when I turned 30. I celebrated in Vegas with my family. It was a pretty good birthday, but not the best.

It was surreal turning 30. I thought I’d magically feel some semblance of contentment or confidence wash over me. The confidence took about five more years to manifest. The contentment came a little more slowly. One thing I realized the other day, I’m not as nervous about much as I used to be. It’s great! All of these interviews I’ve been going on have been a little nerve racking, but my sense of confidence has helped me through them better than any other time in my life when I’ve had a job change.

Why is 39 the best birthday? Because after all these years, I finally have my birthday wish come true. I get to spend it with my boyfriend. For one birthday in high school, I had a boyfriend. It was nice, but this one is infinitely better. The sweetest man ever is celebrating with me. We’re going to visit wineries, have a nice dinner, and of course, birthday cake. I think it’s been two years since I’ve had birthday cake.

Last year, I was down in southern California celebrating my cousin, who now lives in Minneapolis, and her graduation from college. It was also the first time I puked in public (twice)…and I was completely sober! Thank you, migraine!

So unless I somehow end up puking on my shoes in the middle of a parking lot again, I think this birthday will be better. But, the fact that I get to spend it with Paul ensures that I will have the time of my life.

Everyone out there who has been wishing and hoping for something in their lives to change, I wish for it to happen for you. I wish you the best and want you to be as happy as I am. I know you can have it and I know you deserve it. Even if you feel angry, depressed, and defeated, please, keep hope alive. I felt that way last year.

This year, my life is vastly different. It happened when it happened, not when I wanted it to, but when it was supposed to. When I finally found the inner peace to go with the flow, things began to change. But, it wasn’t easy. I am a control freak. I want things to happen, NOW. What I wasn’t doing was looking at how wonderful my life already was.

Where do I see myself in five years? I hate this question in interviews. Five years ago, if you had told me I’d be living in the Midwest with the man of my dreams, I would have laughed in your face and then started crying because I was so lonely. Honestly, after all I’ve experienced this year, I have no idea where the universe will lead me over the next half decade. All I care about is that I get to take that journey with Paul.

Beauty Product Storage: How do you organize it?

Since I’mbeauty products, storage, organization still settling into my new place, one of the challenges I face has to do with my beauty products.  About a year and a half ago, I bought this organizer at Target.  It was great for splitting up my numerous products. Plus it was easy to carry from one room to another since I wasn’t living in my own place.  I had to figure out a way to consolidate and still have access to the stuff that made me pretty…or at least feel pretty.

foundation, eye serum, sunblock

The first layer is moisturizer and foundation. Yes, I love Olay products.  My mom uses them, which is why I tried them.  They always smelled so good.  Now, I use them because they work and don’t irritate my skin.  I’ve tried other products, but always end up going back to Olay.

The 2nd layer is supposed to be my everyday makeup, but as you can probably see (or not) a few fun/night on the town type make up items have made their way up a layer.

fun makeup

The 3rd layer is supposed to be the glittery, glam makeup that I only wear on special occasions or because it’s Friday night. Sephora and NARS are my favorite brands.  NARS because the color in the container is true to what ends up on my face and Sephora for the same reasons, but mostly because it’s significantly cheaper than NARS.

As I was taking these pictures, I realize that I need to purge this stuff…as well as just generally clean the silly thing.  While I do like this method of organization, the snaps on this plastic tackle box are starting to wear, so I’m going to have to start looking for an alternative soon.