Say Yes to the Dress or…

My friends and I went to Mary’s Designer Boutique in Annapolis, MD in August 2017.  We were so excited about being together and looking for the perfect dress for the bride to be.  We walked into the boutique and there was a sign that reads, “I said YES to the Dress”.  This made us even more excited and we wiped out our phones and began to snap (Snapchat). We tiptoed toward the dresses and then Mary came over and directed us to our seating area.

This is supposed to be an exciting, fun, and momentous occasion for the bride to be BUT…Mary’s Designer Boutique left much to be desired. Mary, the owner, was very impersonal, inattentive, uninviting, and hurried. Customer service is extremely important to me. My friends and I had a scheduled appointment but felt as if other customers were more important. Mary left our party for another customer and NEVER came back to check on us. She then had her receptionist helping us find dresses etc. The receptionist was CONSTANTLY on her phone. As SOON as she stepped out of the dressing room…ON THE PHONE. She walked over to get another dress and she was hiding between the dresses…ON THE PHONE. THIS WAS A MAJOR PROBLEM! Then Mary told us that every place in the area had the same dresses and we wouldn’t find anything else.

I posted the above on her FB page only to find out that we were not the only people that had a horrible experience at her shop.  Another potential client, Haley (whom I’ve gotten permission to use her review) said the following:

I just had the worst dress shopping experience here. They are very pushy and only care about making the sale. Once we walked in they were rude about how many people I had with me, even though I cleared the number with them at first. Mary claims to be a designer with her “originals” however I ran into an old employee of Marys (worked there for a good amount of time) and she said that she doesn’t even make these dresses and Mary is just a scam artist who puts her own tags on designer dresses. She made me feel uncomfortable in the dressing room since she wanted to be in there the whole time and also got mad at me when I couldn’t tell her exactly what I did and didn’t like about each dress. She also told me was last minute on buying a dress… my wedding is almost 10 months out. Needless to say I left in tears. Mary and her employees are unprofessional, rude, and only care about the sale. Avoid at all costs.

There are many more reviews just like the above on Mary’s Facecbook page.  It’s sad that someone is running a business in such a manner that turns people away.

We DID find a quaint shop just 10 minutes away (Love and Lace) with SUPERB customer service from the time we set foot in the door. I suggest you pass Mary’s Boutique unless you like unsatisfactory customer service and cold shoulders. Even if the bride had found a dress, it wouldn’t have been purchased from Mary’s Bridal Boutique.

Until next time!

~ Elle

The Rih’l Deal

September 8, 2017 the make-up industry changed FOREVER!  Robyn Rihanna Fenty launched her own beauty line via Sephora.  Rihanna took her time with this beauty line and continues to launch different products every so often.  The original launch released my absolute favorite product…INVISIMATTE.  Invisimatte is a blotting powder that is INVISIBLE and works WONDERS (THANKS, Rihanna!).

Let me just tell you how wonderful this product is. My skin is EXTREMELY oily and due to that fact I rarely wear makeup (I actually dislike it).  I have tried Aveda products to eliminate the oil and other natural products to also aide in cutting the amount of oil my skin produces, especially throughout the day.

I purchased my INVISIMATTE on September 8, 2017 and instantly fell in love with it. I have used the product faithfully everyday after my purchase.  The amount of oil my skin produces…reduced significantly.  There were a few days that I forgot to put it on and there was a noticeable difference…the shine was BACK.

THE TRUE TEST

December 31st was the test of all tests!  As I stated previously, my skin is EXTREMELY oily and as a result the amount of shine is insane.  I decided that I HAD to wear my INVISIMATTE blotting powder for New Year’s Eve or else I’d be wiping my face before every picture (embarrassing).  I went through my normal facial regime…I washed my face, blotted some of the water, then applied my lotion, let the lotion soak in and then applied INVISIMATTE to my entire face.  After the INVISIMATTE application, I applied my eyeshadow, foundation (powder), eyeliner,  and finishing spray.

My makeup lasted from 7:30pm until 2:30 am.  I refreshed by simply applying a once over of INVISIMATTE with my Fenty Beauty touch up brush.  I didn’t have to wipe any shine off of my face.  I didn’t feel shiny the entire night and I felt AMAZING!

The next product I MUST try is her foundation. I am afraid but I think it will be worth the try, as INVISIMATTE has already proved to be a GREAT investment.

Thanks Rihanna!

Maintenance

Attention is expensive to pay! I can’t get by on minimum wage! ~ Jhene Aiko https://youtu.be/M8F-H3M3ttw

Relationships can be complex! You have two people from different upbringings, with different life experiences.  Choosing to be in a relationship requires time, devotion, consideration, sacrifice, and will!

When we see someone that sparks our interest or that we think may fit our profile as a potential significant other, we don’t often think about all that goes into maintaining that “INTEREST”.

The calls and texts begin coming in on a regular.  Then the long, late night conversations occur that end with “No, you hang up,” or the falling asleep with each other on the phone just to wake up in the middle of the night to hard breathing, snoring, or a dial tone (throwback).

Courting – to be involved with romantically. Synonyms – set one’s cap for, romance, dating, woo

We court the “love interest” and get them accustomed to spending quality time but then reality sets in. Work, family, friends, bills…just everyday life become factors that change the consistency of courting and often, the person that we sought after must take the back seat.  This can be dangerous territory if not dealt with properly. It’s OH SO important to make sure that the significant other doesn’t remain on the back burner.

Courting an “interest” is what led to the relationship that you are now in.  Maintaining that “interest” (even in marriage) is imperative!  Attention is expensive to pay…is your man or lady worth that wage?

The Right to Choose

*Cue music*

“My way, my way

You can’t satisfy her needs

She keeps runnin’ back to see me do it

My way, my way

What I say goes

And I’m in control”

~ Usher (My Way)

Usher! Usher! USHER! So, you’re in control, huh?  I bet you wish you were in control of this situation that is SPIRALING OUT OF CONTROL!

I’m not going to make light of the situation, as this is nothing to laugh at.  We can all say things like: “Well, the women knew better.” “She (however many “shes” there were) should have requested he use a condom.” OR “We know the risks of unprotected sex.” etc.

Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!  We’ve all had unprotected sex at one time or another. SO, CUT THE JUDGING!  The thing that sticks out to me, is that he failed to disclose this information to these women. Hence, his way or the highway.

Usher was out here playing God with these women’s lives.  Instead of revealing this information and allowing them to make a choice; he said, “My way…I’m in control”.

They should’ve been given the opportunity to choose…bottom line.  9 times out of 10, had he revealed the truth…all of these women and 1 man wouldn’t be suing him for sexually transmitting an incurable disease.

 “Let’s talk about sex, Baby

Let’s talk about you and me

Let’s talk about all the good things

And the bad things that may be

Let’s talk about sex!”

Salt-N-Pepa (Let’s Talk About Sex)

 

Communication is key! Be safe out there!

FACTS: In the United States, about one out of every six people aged 14 to 49 years has genital herpes.  You contract herpes by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the disease.

 

Girls Trip

Cyndi Lauper said it best, “Girls just want to have fun!”

Girls Trip featuring: Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Regina Hall, and Tiffany Haddish was nothing short of hilarious!  I’ve seen the movie three times and laugh EACH and EVERY time.  Due to the laughter of the crowd…I heard something new each time.  The movie is a feel good, real life comedy about four black women that attended college together.  However, life after graduation has gotten in the way of their quality time.  They are given the opportunity to go on a “Girls Trip” to New Orleans, where they reconnect with one another.  The storyline was realistic yet comical.

For those of you that have not seen the movie, I will not spoil it for you! PROMISE 😊

This morning, my aunt tagged me on a vlog about “Girls Trip”. I watched the vlog and was immediately annoyed by the vloggers opinion.  Now everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I’m just trying to figure out what planet she lives on.

The vlogger stated that “Girls Trip” was a disappointment, disgrace, extremely offensive, raunchy, stereotypical, and unrealistic.

Things I’d like to ask this vlogger:

  1. Do you have any friends?
  2. Are any of your friends black females?
  3. Were you allowed to have fun as a child?
  4. Where did you grow up?
  5. Did you attend college?
  6. Where do you live now?
  7. Does your Mom love you?
  8. Do you need a hug?
  9. Do you even know HOW to laugh?
  10. Did you even go out with your “friends” in college?
  11. Is your husband successful? (I peeped a wedding ring.)
  12. Are you happy in your marriage?
  13. What’s your husband’s ethnic background?
  14. Why is it necessary for a woman to have/keep a man in order to be complete?
  15. Do you attend church? (I know plenty of women just like Dina, Ryan, Sasha, and Lisa that attend church.)
  16. Have you ever needed time away from reality?
  17. Are your panties too tight?
  18. Do you have open conversations with your female “friends”?
  19. Do you EVEN know how to laugh?
  20. Are you in touch with reality?

Again, her opinion is just that…her opinion!  I just DO NOT AGREE!  However, I do understand it (after having an in-depth conversation with my best friend).

Based upon my experience, I know women that exhibit similar qualities and experiences of each character depicted in this movie.  These women, including myself did not ask for these experiences. Living REAL life can throw a monkey wrench in your plans and dreams; it’s all about how you deal with your reality.  As a matter of fact, Tiffany Haddish, who played Dina “The Wild One”, grew up in foster homes.  Tiffany seems to be very street smart, funny, “loud”, but extremely WELL ROUNDED!  Does she fit a stereotype?  I’m sure she does, but her experiences shaped her personality.  I’m shocked that a “black woman” would bash this film.

Now, there is another film similar to “Girls Trip” entitled “Rough Night” (mostly Caucasian cast).  I have not seen this film and will probably just wait until it’s available on On Demand.  I watched the trailer to see how similar that film was to “Girls Trip”.  They are similar in that, a group of women got together for a trip.  However, in “Rough Night” they end up killing a man.  Hmmmmmm!  The stereotype here…THAT PRIVILEGE shows up.  I don’t know the outcome but I’m sure they didn’t get arrested for killing a man. I’d like to hear the vloggers take on “Rough Night” as well.

With all the being said, LIGHTEN UP!  To those that have seen the movie continue to support and take your girlfriends that have not seen it. SUPPORT OUR BLACK SISTERS!  The movie was phenomenal and is sure to be a CLASSIC.  This movie showed that we CAN get along and we CAN be successful! We may not always agree with one another, we may argue, but in the end our love for one another outshines all the drama.  #BlackGirlsRock  #BlackGirlMagic

“When the working day is done

Oh when the working day is done oh girl

Girls, they wanna have fun!”~Cyndi Lauper (Girls Just Want to Have Fun)

Attached is the vlog I referred to. If you haven’t seen the movie…DO NOT WATCH this video, as it is a spoiler. 

https://www.facebook.com/davina.jacksonblack/posts/10209507645480075 

Thanks for Understanding

Grief: deep sorrow, especially caused by someone’s death.

Six years ago, I had the privilege of closing our family reunion with the following devotional thought:

Public speaking is really not my thing, I am more of a behind the scenes person.  Let’s pray! I have been having a rough time coming up with a message. So, I waited to hear everyone else’s message in hopes to tie them altogether but I missed several of them for various reasons. Then Evelyn’s dynamic message really discouraged me from wanting to speak.  Friday evening before the sunset, my family and I went to Walmart to make sure we had breakfast for my son. The first time we went in the wrong direction, then we got back on track, took the right exit but didn’t go down far enough and got right back on the highway. As we were driving yet again in the wrong direction, one of the girls said, “Mommy look a rainbow!”  I quickly whipped out my phone to take a picture.  I started snapping away and then opened my notes app because instantly the words “he will never leave us nor forsake us” popped into my head. But that was a far as I got.  

 Yesterday afternoon I was sitting in the lobby so I could gather my thoughts for my worship thought. Lorice came over spoke about my dilemma and she began to encourage me…He will never leave us nor forsake us. I spoke to Diane after vespers and she also encouraged me and said that I would be alright…He will never leave us nor forsake us.  If we look around we see ALL of the family members that God has blessed us with. We should be rest assured that his presence will never leave us even when we are feeling down, discouraged, when we procrastinate, even when we neglect him. He is still there letting us know…I’M HERE! He gave us such a strong, stable, God fearing family on which we can call on when things get tough.  Not very many people have the type of bond that the Fordham-Wagner Family have and we are truly blessed. When we leave here let’s not forget one another and just catch up in another two years. Let’s try to stay in constant contact with God and with one another and remember God put us in this family for a divine purpose. We must always remember that God will never leave us nor forsake us.                (Written July 30, 2011)

Correlation: a mutual relationship or connection between two or more things.

Who knew that the following day, life as I had known it…would forever be altered.

“So sad to see you go so soon

I know that you ain’t coming back

Every minute you’re gone

I’m missing you so

I can’t believe that you’re far away

Can’t get you out of my mind” 

~ Marsha Ambrosius (Far Away)

 

Since the loss of my brother in 2011, I haven’t given attending Family Reunion a second thought…it’s just too hard. I’ve correlated it with losing my brother, my first best friend.  Please know that I love each of dearly but this time 6 years ago, I still had a brother.  The days leading to the anniversary of his death, are the hardest for me.  I feel like God did forsake me and Family Reunion is a constant reminder of my loss.  Some may say I’m being selfish.  Sorry, not sorry…I’m still grieving.  The pressure of grief comes and goes. I must allow myself this time to grieve.

Thanks for understanding.

 

You’ve been Robbed

As I begin to write this, portions of Playa Hater by Notorious BIG come to mind ~

Playa, turn your head round/Lay on the ground, you’ve been robbed/Wake up, open the door/Lay on the floor, you’ve been robbed.

In light of everything that happened yesterday…this morning WPGC 95.5 asked callers what was the worst thing they’ve done during/after a breakup.

Just in case you were under a rock or something and missed yesterday’s SOCIAL MEDIA DEBACLE…Rob Kardashian took to Instagram and posted nude pictures of Blac Chyna (the mother of his child), their text messages and the like.  In his rants, he told of her affairs with other men while they were together, told how much money he spent on her “bounce back” body (after the baby), and outed another couple that had a threesome with her…Blac Chyna.

All that being said, breaking up is NOT easy. However, there are ways to come out with your head held high.  With that being said, please keep in mind that Rob K. is known to deal with depression and I believe that his “outburst” was his way of dealing with the issues at hand.

We’ve all dealt with breakups and I’m sure some of us have done somethings we aren’t so proud to own up to.

So, as I was listening to WPGC 95.5 this morning…I thought about myself and my many break ups (dating and marriage) and how I’ve dealt them.

Elle after a breakup:

  1.  I’m not slashing your tires.
  2. I’m not gonna go after the new chick.
  3. I’m not calling him (ex) or her (new chick).
  4. I’m NOT freezing accounts.
  5. I’m not gonna be on the run cuz I lost my shit!

WHAT I WILL DO:

  1.  Contemplate several petty get backs but never follow through.
  2.  LOVE ME!
  3.  Seek counseling for self.
  4.  Smile and laugh cuz he lost.
  5.  *I’LL WAIT FOR IT* If he cheated on ME..he will do the same to the next.
  6.  Encourage those that have been through similar situations. (DON’T GIVE UP!)
  7.  DELETE pictures of us on social media.
  8.  I WILL NOT DISGRACE MYSELF!

When one makes the decision to step outside of their marriage/relationship and destroy their family just to lie down with a “new body”…he/she doesn’t love him/herself.  Destroying a relationship has a huge impact not only on the two people involved but also those around them.  Often times, those that aren’t in the relationship are hurt the most. #sadderday  Seeking to destroy the person that has hurt you, won’t just hurt that person.  TREAD CAREFULLY!

Don’t rob yourself of your freedom from the toxic person that sought to destroy you via their “low self-esteem” and lack of commitment.  You are worth maintaining your dignity.

 

~ Playa, turn your head round/Take off that crown, you’ve been robbed/Wake up, open the door/ Don’t cry no more, you’ve been robbed/ Lay on the floor, you’ve been robbed/ Wake up (wake your ass up), take off your jewels/You fuckin fools, you’ve been robbed (this is a ROBBERY)! ~ The Notorious B.I.G. – Playa Hater (Life After Death)