Category Archives: Random Stuff I Like

“From the Rough”

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Taraji My girlie GG is an intern on Taraji Henson’s upcoming film, “From the Rough.” The movie is based on the true story of Catana Starks, the first African-American female head coach of an NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Team!! Check out GG’s trending Buzzfeed post to learn more about Taraji and Catana!!

10 Reasons Why Taraji P. Henson And Catana Starks Prove Black Girls Are Magic In “From The Rough”

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IN THEATERS APRIL 25TH!!!!

 

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Behind the Scenes of a Hairscapades Wedding

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As you now know, Wei and I tied the knot on December 12th with a ceremony and reception port-side on the Explorer of Seas (see our wedding “album” here). To be honest, I always imagined that I’d elope. I never dreamed of my wedding day nor had I any desire or interest in planning a big, elaborate wedding. Add to that the facts that I’m the consummate procrastinator who hates planning anything and am also super cheap frugal, and you might understand my lack of motivation in setting a wedding date despite being engaged for almost a year and a half. But, with 42 knocking on the door, 2 years since our engagement fast-approaching, and a desire to have children, we knew it was time to get this thing done.

So, about 3 months ago, we decided on a wedding date and honeymoon trip. Then, the planning commenced. Fortunately for me, I have a best friend sent from heaven who did most of the initial heavy lifting. When I tell you that this might not have happened without her, I’m not kidding you. I was so anti-wedding planning. Not anti wedding, anti planning. But, she basically put things in front of me, gave me options, let me decide, and then made things happen. So, a huge shout-out and thank you to my bestie of 22 years, Yutonya (Yooty)! You know you are my ace for LIFE!

Anywho, in about 70 days, we decided on doing the ceremony and reception onboard the Explorer of the Seas port-side prior to embarkation, then kicking all our guests off (sorry guys! LOL!!), and sailing away on a 10 day honeymoon to the Caribbean. Royal Romance took care of a lot of stuff like the venue (obviously ;)), the officiant, the photographer, the reception menu, the cake, the flowers, and the coordination of events. Then, with a lot of help and far too many purchases on Amazon and Etsy *lol*, Wei and I took care of the rest with LOTS of assistance from my sisters, Sheri and Shana, and Yooty. We selected the invitations, which my sisters took care of ordering, addressing, and mailing. Yooty took on the “guest book,” which will be a peacock quilt with “feathers” signed by the guests! And Wei and I got our marriage license (of course) and selected the “wedding party” and colors, favors, cake topper, the jumping broom (well, I selected and he approved;)), and the ceremony and reception “play list.”

Of course, I decided on everything related to my personal appearance. Because, I will say this. There are four things that I cared about in regard to my special day. My dress, my bouquet, the locale, and great pics. I always imagined a flowy, romantic dress a la a Greek goddess or woodland fairy/nymph. I always wanted calla lilies. I always wanted to get married on a beach. And I always wanted beautiful pictures to capture it all! Three (and a half given that it wasn’t a beach, but a boat on the water;)?) out of four ain’t bad, right? LOL!!

So first, my dress was a custom ivory and sand silk wedding gown designed by Arlinda McIntosh for
Sofistafunk the Skirt Company. I had no desire to spend hours in stores trying on tons of dresses. So, I figured, why not contact my designer friend Arlinda?!? I went online and started googling “Greek goddess” wedding gowns and came across this gorgeous Gladiator dress by Australian designer Anna Campell. I showed Arlinda some pics and we set about designing my look with some definitive Sofistafunk flavor thrown into the mix.

With this whole natural hair blogging thing, how I was going to wear my tresses had also become a priority! So, of course I had to reach out to my stylist Tameeka McNeil-Johnson aka Jaded Tresses. Initially, I had settled on a winding braid style on straightened hair that I had been eye-balling for a year. But, when the trial of that hairstyle produced less than stellar results due to my fine, layered strands, I went back to the drawing board. I quickly identified a goddess-like curly updo as my hairstyle of choice and fell in love with it. The big bonus was that I was going to wear my hair in a natural style, not straightened, for my wedding day! My newly coined “Braid n’ Twist n’ Curl” was the perfect foundation for the style. Tameeka made a few custom, henna red colored clip-in extensions to add some dimension and contrast to the updo. Then, we used an old piece of trim that I had picked up a couple of years ago as a double headband to complete the look. The final look was totally me (and I knew Wei would approve as he likes when my hair is up and off of my face :)).

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My glowy, goddessy make-up was done by Mac artist AdjoaFierce (Instagram), who I found at the Mac in Macy’s at Rockaway Mall.

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IAN_0355DSC_0293My beauty team, who got up SUPER early to get to my hotel by 6:30 am!!
(Right: Adjoa [Stephanie]; Left: Tameeka)

Accessories are next. The shoes were probably the most time-consuming and difficult task!! So, let’s acknowledge the elephant in the room. Wei isn’t very tall. Okay. Let’s just say it. He’s vertically challenged. And, so am I. But I usually wear sky high heels to conceal the fact that I’m only 5’1″. And, generally speaking, I could care less that I stand an inch or two taller than him while wearing my 4-5″ heels. But, I had no desire to do so in my wedding day pics :P. So, finding a pair of strappy, teal blue, 3″ or less, pretty heels was a FEAT!!! I found a shoe that I loved, but it was an old style and couldn’t find it anywhere, plus … it had a 4″ heel. So, after weeks of searching daily for hours online, hitting every store with shoes in Short Hills Mall, and contemplating the purchase of custom dyeable shoes and learning that they aren’t water-proof (running shoes on wedding day? That’s a NO!), I finally settled on finding a pair of strappy heels and using a flower shoe clip to spice them up. So, I purchased a pair of $30 teal blue, strappy Antonio Melani sandals from eBay and adorned them with gorgeous peacock colored flower shoe clips from HansHolskopf on Etsy (and she threw in a matching flower hair pin that my niece Reghan wore as my junior bridesmaid!). I completed the look with a personalized, embroidered, peacock feather, silk ivory clutch by EllenVintage on Etsy (I also got the clutches as gifts for my sisters and bestie with special messages) and “Peacock feather” earrings from La Contessa on Amazon.


shoeIMG_8344IAN_0489She implored me to let her be in my wedding as she has never gotten to be a flower girl.
Of course I had to oblige my baby girl ;).

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Now … you know … no Shelli wedding would be complete without a little Batman thrown into the mix ;). So, I special ordered a Batman keepsake and toss garter from Mary and Mary’s on Etsy.
LOL!!

IMG_8352DSC_0534Ivory rose toss bouquet made by my other bestie, Rebecca!

Royal Romance provided a standard ivory rose bouquet with the wedding package. However, as I said above, I always wanted calla lilies. So, for an extra fee, I got what I wanted. But, I supplied the peacock feathers that I acquired from a friend at work! The wedding coordinator/officiant did a wonderful job of adding them to the calla lily and eucalyptus bouquet.

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My wedding favors were cute, heart-shaped measuring spoons called “Love Beyond Measure.” Each spoon is engraved with a “loving” notation: “A pinch of joy,” “A dash of tenderness,” “A spoonful of affection,” “A heap of love.” And we “customized them with a peacock emblazoned sticker with our names and the wedding date.

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Our peacock and eucalyptus adorned jumping broom was purchased from Weddings of Design on Etsy.

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And our “Vintage” engraved monogram cake topper was a custom order from IrishEve on Etsy.

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Whew!! Wedding planning … even small wedding planning … is a lot of work!! And they weren’t kidding when they said you’ll probably spend 2x your intended budget! DANG!! LOL! Did everything go perfectly? No. There was some confusion with the check-in process, it was freezing, my nose started to run on my make-up and I had no tissues. There was no iron in the stateroom, so my sister had to use a hair dryer to try to get the wrinkles out of the bottom of my gown the best she could, but there were still some left. We couldn’t find the cake topper, but discovered it in the room with me when my sister was looking for her cell phone. I forgot to put on my Batman garter belt! There was a looongggg intercom announcement over part of the ceremony, and our officiant was stumbling over her words and at one point said “Partners in crime … uh life.” :/ LOL!!! But, at the end of the day, we didn’t break the bank, I felt like a princess, we got to celebrate this important day with our close family and friends, and we got great pics to capture it all (and as long as the pics look like everything was fabulous, that’s all that really matters, right ;)? LOL!!). So, yeah. It was worth it and I’d do it all again!!

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Join us next time for 365 Days of Fitness on a wedding day and through a 10 day honeymoon!!

(p.s. If you check out/purchase from any of the linked sites, please let them know Hairscapades sent you!! xoxo)

 
 

And They Lived Happily Ever After …

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Yes!! I’s married now!!! LOL!! We did it! We tied the knot on December 12th!! The day was cold, hectic, and went far too quickly with only a 2 hour reception, but it was awesome! Our special day was like a compromise between eloping and a traditional wedding. And, compromise is one of the key components of a successful marriage, right?!? So, I’m thinking that we started this off correctly to get that Happily Ever After ;)!

So, without further ado, here are tons of pics from our very special day! Hope that you enjoy!!

And check out THIS post for more pics and the behind the scenes stuff that went on to plan our special day!!

I’m Walking in a Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5K Today!!

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Hi guys!! Weusi and I are walking in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5K today with a team of my friends and co-workers! Breast cancer has touched many of us directly or indirectly. I have close friends, co-workers, and family who have been impacted by this disease. And, many of those same people are survivors!!

There are a lot of breast cancer events out there, but I’m walking and fundraising for the American Cancer Society because they are the leader in the fight to end breast cancer – doing the most in every community to help women with breast cancer today and working tirelessly to find cures to end the disease tomorrow.

So, why am I telling you this? Because I would like to ask for your help in helping me to meet my fundraising goal of $2500. Yeah, I know! I’m such a procrastinator!! BUT, I have until December 31st to obtain donations!!! And my company will match whatever amount that I raise! Therefore, would you please “sponsor” me by making a donation today (or tomorrow … or you know, any time before 10/30! LOL!!)? No amount is too small and every dollar counts (especially when it gets matched ;))!

Donate here!! 

There are more than 2.9 million breast cancer survivors who celebrated another birthday last year because people like us gave our time and money to help finish the fight against breast cancer.

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Thank you!!!!

Shelli & Weusi

White Women, Black Hairstyles

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Ellen(via Slate.com)

So, my sister Shana posted a link on Facebook to this Slate.com article: White Women, Black Hairstyles. My initial reaction?

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then … 

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Ummmmm …. well, I guess black women have been wearing white, Brazilian, and Asian hair/hairstyles in the corporate space for decades … soooo … ?

Yeah …

Well, I will say this, I don’t care what anyone says … Lisa Stansfield rocked a BAD a@#$ fingerwave back in the day!!

Okay, maybe it wasn’t fingerwaves … but finger curls … #IJS!

And just because I was caught all up in the dopeness that was Stansfield, wasn’t “All Woman” the hard-working woman’s anthem of the 90s?!?! That song was on point. Like, Karyn White’s I’m not your Superwoman of the 80s! And, doesn’t Lisa’s hair look like a fly version of the next to last lady’s style in the article?

Okay … tangent over (you see how I brought it back there at the end though, right?).

DISCUSS!!!!!

 

A Kinda Big Announcement!

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Okay, so some of you may remember that one of the reasons that I started my personal 28 Days of Fitness Challenge, which turned into 365 Days of Fitness, was because I said I wanted to get married this year and refused to shop for a dress fat. LOL!!

Welp, yesterday morning was Day 237 (I still have to workout today) and I’ve lost 25 pounds so far. Yup, I feel good (despite all the junk I ate at NY Comic Con over the last two days! Bleh!!).

So, all that to say …

I’m getting married guys!!!

Yup!! We finally set a date!! LOL!! And, it’ll happen by the 2nd anniversary of our engagement!! So, it really won’t have been that long ;).

It all just came together in the last couple of weeks. We decided to have a small private ceremony followed by a reception with a bigger group of our families and friends. But, there is something a little different about our locale. It’ll be shipboard on our boat at port prior to leaving on a 10 day honeymoon cruise to the Caribbean :)!!! Yeah … no. Not a destination wedding. The only ones “destinating” are Wei and me. LOL!!!

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Anywho, can’t wait to share the full deets!! But, because you never know who is reading/watching, we’ll have to wait to do that until all is said and done! Plus, though I would love to share everything as I’m so excited about the concept, the dress, the hair, the shoes, the locale … I’m trying to curb my diarrhea of the mouth so that I can have a big reveal!!  But, needless to say, we are very excited and busy planning, but trying to stay as stress-free and low key as possible :).

Welp, that’s it. Just felt like sharing as I know some of you have been waiting for that announcement :)! Thanks for all your support, well-wishes, and encouragement!!

Lata Gatas!!!

365 Days of Fitness: Strong Curves

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Just coming on really fast to update you all on 365 Days of Fitness. Yesterday, I completed Day 216 AND the Strong Curves 12 Week At-Home Bodyweight Program!! The last 4 weeks were KILLER, but sooooo worth it!! I’ve experienced such great progress and strength gains. When I started, I couldn’t do ONE unassisted chin-up. It’s not easy, but now I can do 3 sets of 3!!

And the strength I have gained in my legs, arms, back, and core are paying rewards in yoga!!

Crow to headstand to chatarunga to upward dog to downward dog flow.

Compass pose done the first time EVER. Sunday, September 22, 2013.

Day 217: Compass pose done the first time EVER.
Sunday, September 22, 2013.

Now, to take a break. NOT from exercising silly ;)!! Just from Strong Curves! It’s been an intense 12 weeks of doing Strong Curves 3 days a week and I haven’t been eating the best, because it makes me so hungry! So, my weight has stayed pretty much the same (with some up and down on the scale). In order to get my eating back on track and to give my body a chance to recover, I’m going into an active “rest” week. I originally planned to do 20-30 minutes of Vinyasa Flow yoga a day with a DVD I picked up about a month ago on Amazon, Shiva Rea Daily Energy Vinyasa Flow. I really like this DVD because it has seven 20 minute practices that you can do solo or mix and match. You can also follow pre-set programs that do the mixing and matching for you.

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I may still do this only, but I’m also feeling like I may throw some hip thrusts and cardio in there too. We’ll see how I feel and how the week plays out. But, I will definitely do at least 20 minutes of yoga every day. If I can do what I did above with one practice a week, I wonder what I could accomplish practicing every day!!

Okay, before I go, wanted to share two more things. I haven’t taken an after picture for Strong Curves and it may have to wait until next week … because the bloat is on, if you get my drift. But, I figured I’d share some more before and after pics from April and August. You’ve seen the abs in the past, but this is the first time I’ve posted my leg progress on the blog. You see, my lower body takes a lot longer to respond to exercise and diet. But, I’m getting there and I’m hoping that next week’s shots (plan to do a full body comparison to May … after a good week of eating *fingers crossed*) will look even better.

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And last, but definitely not least, two weeks ago, I decided I was going to start a new 10 minutes a day 365 Day Challenge. I have a dear friend with two very small children whose beloved 34 year old husband died this past week after an unexpected 9 month battle with leukemia. About three weeks ago, they placed him in an induced coma and I went to see her at the hospital. Her sadness, pain, and suffering hit me so hard. I tried my best to say the right words and tell her to keep faith and keep praying and God is a healer and performs miracles. But, I felt so helpless to really comfort her (though she has told me several times that my visiting that day and talking with her over the months has given her hope and kept her going). I just didn’t feel well-versed enough in scripture to explain why these things were happening and why, despite all their best efforts, things just went from bad to worse.

I had been praying for my friend’s family since her husband was first diagnosed, but I’ve never been comfortable with or good at praying on my own. After that visit with her, I started saying little prayers multiple times a day, awkward as they may have been and felt. The Sunday after I visited her, I was watching In-Touch Ministries with Dr. Charles Stanley (I really like him because he is a teaching pastor). I needed some spiritual encouragement and direction. He was doing a sermon on “A Strong Church.” In it, he spoke about the need to have a church where you bring your Bible and you study it. A few moments later, as I was preparing to leave for hot yoga, I started posting the following poster as a fitness inspiration:

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And something clicked. Yes, this applied to fitness, but it also applied to me and something that I’d been thinking about for years. I was really ready to work on developing a closer relationship with God and Jesus. I thought, “Just like I can devote at least 10 minutes a day to my physical health, I can devote at least 10 minutes a day to my spiritual health! I mean, shoot! I spend 30-40 minutes on Facebook and IG every morning!! I need to give some of that time to God!”

And 365 Days of the Word began that very day. I asked for suggestions on what books or apps might be helpful and several people recommended YouVersion The Bible, which is chock full of reading plans. I started The One Year Bible that day and completed Day 15 this morning.

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Now, instead of waking up and grabbing my phone to check Facebook and Instagram for notifications and turning on the news to create background noise, I start my cup of coffee, say a prayer, and spend some quiet time alone with God and the “Bible.” I still have to stop myself from checking FB and IG and turning on the TV first … in fact, I turned on the TV yesterday and had to quickly turn it off. But, I’m working on replacing my old habits and routine with a new one, just like I did with fitness … one day at a time.

Okay, I have fifty gajillion other things I could share about this, but I know that I have started to ramble! This post ended up being far longer than I initially intended … but that’s how it almost ALWAYS is with me. Once I start, it’s hard to stop me ;) and I thought it was important to share this new journey. I hope that you are glad that I did so.

Okay, that’s it! Enjoy the rest of your weekend! I need to go wash this hair and maybe …. maybe … there might be a blow-out in the immediate future that I’ll be sharing ;).

Lata Gatas!!

Nail Fabulosity

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Okay, I am not a nail polish person. I loved the gel polishes a few years back … until they thoroughly destroyed my nails for MONTHS due to the chiseling required to remove the polish. And as it relates to regular polish, I have several complaints.  One, I have no interest in waiting for nail polish to dry. So, two, I usually mess at least one nail up before it does. And three, even if I don’t, it starts chipping and peeling in less than 24 hours. And, four, I am not reapplying another layer of polish a day, because it goes back to waiting for it to dry.  So, why then did I break down on Tuesday and got a mani with my normal monthly summer pedi? Well, ecause it’s only $25 for both on Mon-Wed at my normal spot and I really liked my Minions yellow nails that I did for the Warrior Dash!! Well, my issues were proven. I dinged a nail slightly once I got home and it wasn’t totally dried hard. And, by the next morning … nails chipping and peeling already. And today? Wrecked!! Grrrrrr Arrrggghh!!

Anywho, all this to say, I posted a pic of my nails and got some advice on things to do to get nail polish to stick. Gelous Nail Gel from Sally’s as a base coat, bringing my own polish since they use thinner in the bottles at the salon, and/or using a gel top coat sealed with the UV light.

With those potential solutions in hand when I saw my girl Rece, of A Hair Story, post about her new nail polish line, Nail Fabulosity, and then saw her thermal nail polishes … my ambivalence about nail polish waned. I sooooo want to try these!!! To learn more about Nail Fabulosity and Rece’s formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluen, formaldehyde resin, and camphor free polishes, and learn where you can buy them, check out her post above!!

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Oh, and check out this review of the Nail Fabulosity thermal polish, Butterfly Kisses (a pink/purple), by my other curlfriend, Michelle of Radiant Brown Beauty.

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Have you tried thermal nail polishes? What’s the verdict?

Originally posted on A Hair Story...:

What’s been consuming my time?

Nail Fabulosity!

A little over a month ago, I started my own line of nail polishes called Nail Fabulosity. I am currently selling on Etsy at NailFabulosity.Etsy.com. I create unique hand blended nail polishes that are 5-free and cruelty free.

5-free means that they’re free of the toxins formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluene, formaldehyde resin and camphor.

Cruelty free means they’re never tested on animals.

Some polishes are glitter polishes, some are thermal and change color based on temperature (my personal favorite) and some are holographic nail polishes.

I create custom order nail polishes if you have something special in mind.

I create custom orders as favors for events such as baby showers, bridal showers and birthdays. So if you know the bride to be is a pink girl, I will create a lovely, unique pink polish as favors for her bridal shower.

Please…

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Ahhh Humidity … Thou Art a Heartless B@#$!!

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And for more curly hair fun, check out this Buzzfeed list Mane Man Jor-El shared over on Facebook:

31 Problems Only People with Curly Hair Will Understand

I’m sure that all of us can relate to at least one or two or TEN of these!!! LOL!!

#99problems #rollwithit #itsallgood

10 Signs You Might Be A “Pro” Natural

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10Signs#IJS

I know there are more, so what would you add to the list ;)?

Oh, oh, oh!!! I just remembered the one that I wanted to add!!

11. You catch yourself doing random length checks (and marveling at shrinkage).