Monthly Archives: December 2013

365 Days of Fitness on a Honeymoon

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As many of you know, I have been doing a personal fitness challenge to work out a minimum of 10 minutes every day for 365 Days. Well, those 365 days included my wedding day and 10 day honeymoon from 12/12-12/21/13. And, I am VERY happy to report that I did not miss one day of working out during my honeymoon and am up to day 315 as of yesterday (still have to get in my 10 minutes today). I didn’t post my workouts daily on Instagram as our internet time was limited. But, I did post my workouts on IG, Facebook, and Twitter periodically. So now, just wanted to share those updates here for those who only follow Hairscapades on the blog :).

First things first though. If you remember, one of the reasons that I started a 28 Day Fitness Challenge back on February 18, 2012 was because I said that I refused to get married fat! LOL! Well, I’m happy to say that on December 11, 2013, Day 296, one day prior to my wedding, I achieved my goal weight of 120 pounds!!

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I was so psyched because that was the weight I wanted to achieve for my wedding day and gown!

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Now, I’m not gonna lie to you. As I type this, my chocolate, cookie, cake, and assortment of other high calorie food honeymooning/holiday eating butt weighed in at 128.5 pounds this morning. I’ve also ONLY been doing 10 minute work-outs since I got back from the honeymoon!! BUT, I’m gonna get the eating back together now that the holidays are over and I’ll get back to longer cardio sessions and strength training.

Anywho, back to 365 Days of Fitness on a Honeymoon …

Now, you may think that it would be very challenging to continue working out daily on a honeymoon and a cruise ship. However, I looked at it this way. There is less of an excuse to not work out on vacation then there is when you are working 8+ hour days and doing all of the work required to maintain a household. I mean, shoot. You’re resting and relaxing on a vacation!! You don’t have to go to work. You don’t have to cook. You don’t have to clean. People are doing those things for you!! So, ten minutes of exercise a day is nothing and TOTALLY doable!! #noexuses

So, I knew all along that I would at least do that and brought several DVDs with me to ensure that I could exercise in our room if all else failed. But, awesomely enough, the gym was 2 short flights of stairs immediately above my deck!!

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And, I felt so great from the extra calories (I was restricting to achieve my goal weight, but now all bets were off ;)), I was killing it with the workouts on most days!! That being said, here is a recap of Days 1-10 of my honeymoon and Days 297-306 of 365 Days of Fitness!

Day 1/297 (Wedding Day at 9:50 pm): Treadmill 3.8 mph (12 min)

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How I really felt.

20131212_220819Can you say TIRED? #howthemightyhavefallen LOL!!

Day 2/298: Treadmill run @ 1% incline (10 min @ 5, 10 min @ 5.2, 10 min @ 5.5, 10 min @ 5.7 mph) 5 min warm-up, 5 min @ 3.8 mph, 5 min cool down (55 min total).

Day 3/299: Stationary bike (35 min); 3×12 captain’s chair bent knee leg raises; 3×12 weighted ab crunches; 30 reps side crunches on Swiss ball (R and L); 15 reps crunches on Swiss ball; 5 sets of 16 rep kettlebell swing variations.

Day 4/300: Yoga (55 min) (They offered yoga classes 3 days of the trip for $12 each! I took advantage of it twice) + about 30 minutes of ice skating!

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Day 5/301: Treadmill run 5.7 mph for 20 min and 6 mph for 5 min (accidentally hit emergency stop after warm-up) (36 min)

365onHoneymoon6“Where’s Weusi?” Also was a milestone day for 365 Days of the Word :).

Day 6/302: Stationary bike (25 min in am) + stretching session w/some arm balance and inversion practice (40 min in pm).

Day 7/303: Zip Lining with a 10 min downhill walk + Abs of Steel (10 min), because Wei said the walking for the zip line didn’t count! 😛 LOL!!

Day 8/304: Treadmill run @ 1% incline (10 min @ 5.2 mph, 10 min @ 5.5 mph, 5 min @ 5.7 mph, 5 min @ 6 mph, 5 min at 6.3 mph, 10 min at 3.8 mph w/progressive incline 2-8% grade) 5 min warm-up & cool down (60 min total)

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Day 9/Day 305: Yoga (50 min)

Day 10/Day 306: The Biggest Loser Cardio Max Week 3-4 program (40 min)

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So, that’s 365 Days of Fitness on a honeymoon!! Not bad, right? Soooo … I was thinking of posting a 28 Day/10 Minutes a Day Challenge for 2014 for you guys! I think 365 Days is a lot to bite off at first and could discourage some from even giving it a try. But, 28 Days, the way I started, is a great entree and I could post some tips. I would be doing it at the same time, of course, as my 365 Days doesn’t end until February 17th. And, I was thinking of starting the 28 Days (4 weeks) on Sunday, January 5th. So waddaya think?

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WHO WANTS TO PARTICIPATE IN A 28 DAY/10 MINUTES A DAY FITNESS CHALLENGE FROM JANUARY 5TH TO FEBRUARY 1ST 2014? 

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Goat Milk Conditioner Video Demo

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A little over month or so ago, I shared a DIY Goat Milk Conditioning Hair Mask Recipe. As I mentioned then, and I’ll reaffirm now, I LOVE this stuff!! My hair has been amazing since I started using it and I’m about to apply a batch that I mixed up this past Sunday as soon as I post this!!

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Anywho, I know that some people are more visual and want to SEE things demonstrated. But, this is the thing. I struggle with videos and they take me hour upon hour to tape, edit, and figure out how to upload properly. So, I haven’t done any “real” ones in FOREVER!! But, I was very pleased to see that Sawah of DiscoveringNatural tried my goat milk recipe and filmed it!! So, I’m sharing her video for those interested in seeing the recipe “in action.” And, I love that she has a different texture than me and can demonstrate its effectiveness on tighter coils!! Thanks Sawah!!

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(p.s. I have since added an eye dropper full each of Nettle Leaf and Marshmallow Root extracts to my recipe. I got them for something else that I never made, because both herbs are touted to have benefits for hair. Can’t say for certain that they improved the efficacy of the conditioner. But again, my hair has been behaving WONDERFULLY since I started using this and my shedding/hair loss has been dramatically decreased.)

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Have you tried a goat milk hair conditioner? If so, how would you describe your hair texture and what were your results?

Thank You … See You in 2014 …

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I have at least 5 notes and/or drafts of post to share with you all on the wedding and honeymoon and about life in general. The outpouring of love and support for Shelli/Hairscapades and our marriage has been beautiful and inspiring. Honestly, it’s a bit overwhelming. So let me simply say this to you all … THANK YOU.

Holler at you in 2014!

SHiNE,
Weusi

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!!

Busy, Busy, Busy: Wedding, Bible, Fitness

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I started this post about 3 weeks ago with the title, “Eventful Week.” I never got past uploading a few photos. *Womp Womp* *LOL* So now, this post will briefly cover my last month of activities. If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, you probably know most of this stuff already, so it’s old news. If not, here goes!!

WEDDING STUFF:

I’ve had THREE bridal showers in the last month!! My sisters and bestie threw a bridal shower for me in Princeton on November 10th. It wasn’t a surprise, but it was very exciting and a lot of fun :). It’s always wonderful to be surrounded by family and friends who love you and are rooting for you. Got lots of goodies, and I’m pretty much set for nightwear for the cruise! LOL!

The same week, my friends and co-workers in my company’s main office got me there under the pretense of a 2014 Project Planning meeting only to surprise me with a shower! I think the best part of that was … no meeting! LOL!!!!

Then, on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, my friends and co-workers in my home office surprised me with yet another shower!

Needless to say … I have a lot of awesome stuff … and no idea where I’m going to put it all!! LOL!!

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Next, my custom invitations from Little Peanut Gallery (Etsy) were sent this month, options selected for the wedding and finalized with Royal Romance, my Sofisafunk custom wedding dress was finished and picked up, I did two hair trials with Tameeka (Jaded Tresses) and decided on my wedding day hairstyle, and I did a make-up trial and found my look and artist on the same day at MAC in Rockaway Mall (shout out to AdjoaFierce on IG!). In addition to that, I’ve ordered so many things on Etsy and Amazon that something has happened that I never thought would. I’m sick of seeing packages on my doorstep!!!! They just look like winged dollars flying away now ;)!! LOL!! Anywho, I’ll share those other things after the day has come and gone as I want them to be a surprise to show how everything came together. But, here are some pictures of the invitations, a teaser of the hair and dress, and the before and after make-up look!!

Purple and teal are my fave colors. So I LOVE the box in which these were sent to us!

Purple and teal are my fave colors. So I LOVE the box in which these were sent to us!

Before and after.

Before and after.

I soooo love this! I had nowhere to go, but I didn't want to wash my face!!

I soooo love this! I had nowhere to go, but I didn’t want to wash my face!!

Getting an idea of the look ;)?

Getting an idea of the look ;)?

365 DAYS OF THE WORD:

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So, when I was going to do this update several weeks ago, it was to post that I had finished 60 days of The One Year Bible. But, yesterday, I finished Day 90 and reached the 25% complete milestone! Woot woot! I’ll admit this, the Old Testament has been difficult at times and I spend time researching some verses/sections in order to understand them better and to address my unease with some areas (the animal sacrifice, death penalty, and murder for land acquisition have been particularly troublesome). I have realized that I am very much a child of The New Testament, which is as it should be. So, reading that always brings me back to life :). It reinforces my beliefs and the way in which I try to conduct my life. And reading from Proverbs every day has been reinforcing the importance of wisdom in all aspects of life. So, that has led me to pray for wisdom in my thoughts, words, actions, and interactions every day. Hopefully, it’s working! LOL!!

Anywho, it has been very good for me to start each morning with reading a little from the Bible and praying The Lord’s Prayer, followed with a prayer of thankfulness, and asking for wisdom, focus, and blessings on various things in my life, as well as the lives of family and friends. It took a little while, but a new morning ritual has definitely been ingrained as I am not really tempted to check my FB/IG before reading and I don’t even think about turning on the TV first anymore.

365 DAYS OF FITNESS

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Yesterday, I completed Day 290 of 365 Days of Fitness! I’m just 10 days away from reaching 300 days straight of working out at least 10 minutes a day and I’ve been going hard with the wedding date fast approaching! I still almost can’t believe that I’ve gone this long when initially I was just trying to get through 28 days!! And, I have no doubt that I’ll make it through both my honeymoon and another vacation that I have planned within the last 75 days!! Knowing that people are inspired to start their own challenge or even just work-out on a day that I post an update on IG/FB definitely helps to keep me going!

And that’s it! I have housework to do and wedding day errands to run, plus Day 291 to get done! So, time to go!!

Lata Gatas!!

HAPPY SATURDAY!!!

(Oh wait! One last thing! Completely unrelated. Anyone else watch Justified? I always knew that I would probably like the show, but never watched it as I could never remember when/where it aired. But, trusted friends had been telling me it was really good and right up my alley. So, when I learned that I get free streaming from Amazon Prime, I asked Wei to download it to my Kindle. Welp, I finished season 1 on Thursday and I am LOVING this show!! Great characters, good action, and quirky humor! Check it out if that sounds like your cup of tea! And, if you are already watching it already, NO SPOILERS!! I just started season 2, so I have 3 seasons to go before season 5 premiers in January!)