Sunday Photo Fiction/Taleweaver:  The Down Pour #flashfiction #taleweaver #amwriting 


Thanks to Michael of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting Tale Weaver #137 on the theme of opening and what that word could mean. Also, thank you to Alistair Forbes for hosting Sunday Photo Fiction September 10, 2017. 

———

Credit: A Mixed Bag – Alistair Forbes

———

Min peered at the downpour outside her front window. The rain added to the river’s violent movements beneath her house. 

When she and her son, Sam had moved here, Min hadn’t thought the river below them was dangerous. She’d believed the quiet river had brought her serenity. It’s gentle babble once opened Min’s mind to dreaming. 

However, later that night the river water was at the bottom of Min’s house. She groaned when water began trickling in over the wood floor and carpets. 

“We have to leave now,” Min told Sam, “The water keeps climbing and if we leave it too long we’ll be trapped on the roof.” 

Sam tried his mom’s cellphone. “The cell towers are down so we can’t even call for help. We shouldn’t have stayed, Mom. We should’ve left days ago.” 

Min rubbed Sam’s shoulder before they both grabbed their pre-packed bags rushing out the front door. They had no choice but to wade through water that was hip deep. They sloshed down the bridge/walkway created between all the house’s built above the river. 

When Min and Sam had reached higher ground away from their neighborhood, they sighed collapsing on cots in a school where some of the city’s refugees had began gathering. The river water had been up to Min and Sam’s neck before they had been able to climb uphill, away from the bridge. 

Thank God they had taken the opportunity to leave when they did. Having a moment to spare Min stepped outside and prayed her thanks beneath the open sky and endless rain. 

——–

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

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Fall Beauty Haul 2016 Part Two


Welcome to Part Two of my Fall Beauty Haul 2016. These are all products I have tried since the spring. I apologize as I meant to have Part Two out closer to Part One but life has been busy and I’ve been quite exhausted lately due to health issues. Anyway’s here’s my  Beauty Haul Part Two:


1.Make Up Forever Aqua Smoky Extravagant Waterproof Mascara: Dramatic Impact and Graphic Precision – (www.sephora.ca) – $30.00 CAN

make-up-for-ever-extravagent-waterproof-mascara
Make Up For Ever Aqua Smoky Extravagant Waterproof Mascara (www.sephora.ca) – $30.00 CAN
I’m most definitely a huge Make Up For Ever Fan. Their products are always awesome quality at a reasonable price. For this mascara, I was able to try a sample-size in the non-waterproof version first. I loved the cone shaped brush and was so excited to try the mascara in the waterproof full-sized version. However, the problem with the waterproof version is becoming used to using the cone shaped brush which is larger than in the sample-sized mascara I first tried. The mascara wand brush is an excellent size in the sample version but too big at the end of the cone brush in the full-sized version.

I don’t find I gain much volume in my lashes from this mascara either, which is odd because I did gain volume with sample-sized version? I’ve become used to utilizing this waterproof mascara and it is alright. I’m not sure it’s worth $30.00 CAN. My biggest issue is that the mascara wand too easily leaves mascara all around your eyes, especially underneath them. I always have to take a Q-tip and clean up around my eye a lot. So if you are going to use this mascara, put it on before your eye shadow, as you don’t want to ruin your eye shadow with the Make Up For Ever waterproof mascara.

I’m becoming better at using the cone brush but I find I need to use another mascara on top of this mascara to get a  volumized appearance, and I have thick lashes. I went and bought a L’Oreal Butterfly Effect Mascara in waterproof. I layer this drugstore product over the Make Up For Ever mascara; the drugstore mascara cost me $8.99 CAN. It helps the Make Up For Ever waterproof mascara look a lot fuller. This a three-star mascara, you can buy better ones. I do like the concept of the brush, but I think the mascara wand cone brush is too big in the full-sized waterproof version.


2. Smash Box Oil Free Photo Finish Foundation Primer  – Pore Minimizing –

smash-box-photo-finish-foundation-primer-pore-minimizing
Smash Box Photo Finish Foundation Primer Oil Free – Pore Minimizing (1 0z.) – (www.sephora.ca) – $50.00 CAN
(www.sephora.ca) – $50.00 CAN (1 0z).

I have tried some Smash Box products and been happy. I like there eye shadow as it is highly pigmented and there lip products are wonderful as well. My favourite nude lip gloss is from Smash Box. 

Smash Box was pretty much the first brand to come out with primers for skin. I remember buying their original primer eight or nine-years-ago. Their primers last a long time, even in the sample-size I have been using.

Nonetheless, I have found even if their primers say oil free or pore minimizing, they still make me break-out every single time. It doesn’t matter what primer of Smash Box’s I use. I think if you have drier skin, this might be an okay product for you to use. But personally, the only place I use it after a couple-weeks trying it, is underneath my eyes, so I don’t end up with mascara or eye shadow giving me raccoon eyes later in the day.

If you want an excellent primer that is better for your skin, pore-minimizing and great for all skin types, I recommend the Benefit POREfessional Face Primer for $50.00 for (1.5 0z), a much more reliable buy. It’s also nicer on your skin if you break-out at all. I can wear the Benefit Primer every day and I hardly ever have issues such as I have with Smash Box Primers.


3. BENEFIT cosmetics GIMME Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel (Color 01 Light) – (0.1 oz.) – (www.sephora.ca) – $30.00 CAN

benefit-gimme-brow-new
Benefit Cosmetics GIMME Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel (0.1 oz) – (www.sephora.ca) – $30.00 CAN
It’s always frightening when a makeup brand updates or changes one of your favourite products. Often, I find I don’t like the new product as much. However, I don’t believe this Benefit Cosmetic’s Gimme Brow Gel has changed much with the exception of the outside packaging.

Gimme Brow Gel is my go-to brow gel and lasts me about three-months a container. There are three shades you can choose from besides the one I bought, also medium 02 and Deep 03. It’s amazing product and worth the $30.00 CAN to get a finished looking brow which isn’t too perfect. The product doesn’t cause your eyebrows to appear extremely ‘made-up’ with this Volumizing gel. It gives your eyebrows polish and fills them in.

You can apply Gimme Brow Gel either before or after you fill in your brow with an eyebrow pencil. Unfortunately, I am not happy with the change in the Benefit eyebrow pencils as you know from Part One. But Gimme Brow Gel is a superior product with a brow pencil or without, depending on how much filling in your eyebrows need. Five stars!


4. Origins Plantscription Anti-Aging Power Eye Cream – (www.sephora.ca) – (o.5 oz.) – (www.sephora.ca) – $58.00 CAN

I’ve tried a few Origins samples (for one or two days) of their face creams and have generally,

origins-plantscription-anti-aging-power-eye-cream
Origins Plantscription Anti-Aging Power Eye Cream (0.5 fl oz.) – (www.sephora.ca) –  $58.00 CAN
liked them. This is the first time I had a product of theirs large enough to try over several weeks. I received a larger-size sample of this eye cream and I love it.

I’ve only started to notice my eyes are not as smooth as they used to be. The Origins Anti-Aging Power Eye Cream is gentle on the skin around and over my eyes. It doesn’t burn as some eye creams I’ve tried in the past have. Plus, I wake up feeling my eyes are less puffy and my skin is smoother in my eye area. The eye cream has chamomile and algae in it and is a natural product.

I like it a great deal as well as the fact that it lasts such a long time for a small tube. I think a full-sized product would last months and months. I would consider buying this in the future. I’m impressed by how gentle the eye cream is on sensitive eye skin. And I would agree with the Sephora claim,. after two-weeks or less, you notice a difference in the appearance of skin around your eyes. A well-made product to pick-up if you’re searching for a great eye cream.


5. Dove Dry  Spray Soothing Chamomile 48 Hour Odor Protection – Antiperspirant – (www. well.ca or in store at Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada) – (1.7 g) – $8.99

dove-dry-spray-soothing-chamomile-48-hr-odour-protection
Dove Dry Spray Antiperspirant in Soothing Chamomile 48 HR Odor Protection – (www.well.ca or Your Local Drugstore) – $8.99 CAN
I received a full-sized sample of this to try in one of my last Luxebox’s. As you can tell, since I’m writing about it, I liked the product a lot. I don’t like Dove Hair Care but their body washes and deodorant type products are always wonderful. They leave your skin feeling baby soft and they work well throughout the day.

I guess typically, I apply antiperspirant about two or three times a day, depending on what I’m doing that day. But this antiperspirant by Dove lasts long so I think if you wanted you could apply it less.

The Chamomile scent is refreshing and light. Dove has other scents you can choose from. I love that it’s a spray on antiperspirant which makes it easy to apply. Also, unlike stick deodorant, the dry spray truly doesn’t end up on your clothes.

Dove includes their 1/4 moisturizing cream in this product along with Vitamins E and F to sooth underarm skin. Its a wonderful product and I’m sure at your local drugstore, it will even go on sale as it a common drugstore brand.


6. ST. TROPEZ Gradual Self- Tanning Lotion and Body Moisturizer In Light-Medium (6.7 fl.oz)  (www.beautyboutique.ca or Shoppers Drug Mart) – $38.00 CAN

I had heard great things about St. Tropez self-tanning products and I was excited to

st-tropez-gradual-tan-classic
St. Tropez Every Day Body Lotion Gradual Tan Classic (Light -Medium) (6.7 fl. oz.) – $38.00 CAN
try their products having collected about $80.00 worth of Shoppers Drug Mart Optimum Reward points in the summer. I purchased two bottles  hoping the lotion would be better than Vaseline or Jergans (for instance) self-tanning lotions because its a more high-end brand.

I am truly pale skinned and fair and with this product (as with other self-tanning products) had to be careful I only applied it every three-days or I looked orange or had orange streaks all over my legs (etc). Honestly, with self-tanning lotions, you cannot avoid the streaks. I even put on regular lotion after the tanning lotion, so my skin is less orange. Especially over areas where tanning lotions seem to stick like your ankles and knees.

The moisturizing quality of the St. Tropez Gradual Self-Tan is superior to drugstore brand moisturizers. It’s an awesome lotion which helped with dry skin in the summer. I would say this product is about a four out of five stars. It works well, but it is a bit pricey for what it actually does. But, I’m happy I bought both tubes.

I looked at other St. Tropez products and they are a bit pricier. I wanted to try the foam for instance (with a glove) and it was around $60.00 for a set or for a large-size of the St. Tropez instant tanning foam alone.

So, this one is up to you, and if you want to put all that work into a tan for summer or vacation. Even if St. Tropez self-tan products are pricier, they are by far more worth it than burning your skin to get a tan and inviting skin cancer, which is the most common form of cancer (so I’ve read).


Thanks for reading! Hopefully, see you with more beauty product reviews before Christmas!


©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

Interview With Tosha Michelle


Happy Monday! Welcome to my bi-weekly interview series. I am happy to share with you September’s second interview: the fascinating, beautiful, and gifted poet, Tosha Michelle from the blog — Everything I Never Told You: Lucidly In Shadows, Poetry From A Hand That Writes Misty. 

Please take a look at her blog here: Everything I Never Told You


Tosha Michelle

1. Tell Us About Yourself Tosha? 

My name is Tosha Michelle and I hail from the land of grits and sweet tea. I’m a poet and author of two books — Confessions of a Reformed Southern Belle and Self Help to Self Harm. The first is a chapbook and contains some of my earlier poems. The latter is my silly take on the self help genre. I’ve written things since I was a child but I didn’t take up blogging until about five-years-ago. I’m also an abolitionist and Academia addict. I’m the Radio Host of -Chit Chat Chicks Live and La Literati. I’m a book worm and perpetual nerd and dreamer.

 


 

2.  What Does Writing and Poetry Mean to You Personally? 

Poetry  — reading it, writing it — is one of my greatest forms of pleasure. There’s so much life and emotion which can be found in poetic verse. I write poetry to release my own demons, to make sense of my feelings, and for the sheer pleasure of self-expression. My poetry, usually, stems from strong emotions either good emotions or emotions which feel bad. I find it easier to write when my senses are heightened and I’m in tune with my internal angst or joy.


“I write poetry to release my own demons, to make sense of my feelings, and for the sheer pleasure of self-expression. My poetry, usually, stems from strong emotions either good emotions or emotions which feel bad. I find it easier to writ when my senses are heightened . . .” – Tosha Michelle


3. Why Do You Write and Where Do You Find Your Motivation and Inspiration to Write?

I’m a woman-child in a state of grace, struggling to find my voice and place in this world through introspection, self-reflection, and most importantly by social activism and advocacy. I firmly believe in these words: “Be the change you want to see.” It is only through love, tolerance, humility and the understanding of our own fragility that we can begin to find our humanity and, in turn, extend that humanity to others. I hope this comes through in my writing.


4. Are There Personal Causes Behind Your Writing and Values In Life? 

Love combined with action can and will make an impact on the world. It takes heart and guts to take on the seemly insurmountable, and we must. We must take a stand against injustices such as human trafficking, child abuse, and poverty.

Can one person change the world? Absolutely! Picture a world without Martin Luther King, without Gandhi, without Mother Teresa, and the countless other men and women who fought injustices in their culture, challenged the unchallengeable, and helped change society for the better.

Changing the world, making a difference where you can, and taking a stand, these are issues I often write about. Writing is a fantastic way to make a difference in the world.


” ‘Be the change you want to see.'” It is only through love, tolerance, humility and the understanding of our own fragility that we can begin to find our humanity and, in turn, extend that humanity to others. I hope this comes through in my writing.” – Tosha Michelle


Tosha Michelle 2
Tosha Michelle

5. Do You Find There Is a Time Of Day You Most Enjoy Writing?  Have You Published Any Writing? What Is Your Most Current Writing Projects? 

Mornings are the best time to write, there’s something inspiring about the promise of a new day. As I stated earlier, I wrote Confessions of A Warm Southern Belle and the book, Self Help To Harm. As for projects, I’m working on putting together a collection of my  more recent poems. I also have a project with a fellow poet. We are working on a book together.


Confessions of A Warm Southern Belle: A Poet’s Collection of Love, Loss, and Renewal

By Tosha Michelle

Confessions of A Warm Southern Belle Tosha
http://www.amazon.com

You Can Purchase Tosha’s Poetry Book Here on Amazon.


Self Help to Self Harm: The Dubious Guide To Life, Love, and Relationships

By Tosha Michelle

Self Help Tosha
http://www.amazon.com

Purchase Tosha’s Self Help to Self Harm Book here on Amazon.


4. What Is Your Writing Process Like? How Did You Publish Your Books?
I self-published on Amazon, the process was fairly easy. The hard part is marketing yourself and your writing. I’m not sure if I would take the self-publishing route again. I tend to write obsessively and in spurts. I need a quiet place to create, with no music, TV, or other distractions.


5. Do You Prefer Certain Areas of Writing or Reading Genres? Any Helpful Advice For Other Writers?

 I love poetry and I am a huge fiction fan. I also read a lot of non-fiction as well. I’m a history buff and adore anything related to history and the past.
Writing is such a personal thing and I can only speak to what helps me. Writing every day is something I practice. I also read a great deal. I do think writing and reading go together like biscuits and gravy or cornbread and milk. My Southern roots are showing 🙂
I think you need to just be yourself. There’s something lovely about being authentic and real in writing and in life.


” . . .[Writing] and reading go together like biscuits and gravy or cornbread and milk . . . I think you need to just be yourself. There’s something lovely about being authentic and real in writing and in life.” – Tosha Michelle. 


6. Can You Please Share A Few Links From Your Blog With Your Favorite Or Most Loved Pieces?

“And Everything”

He makes my heart leap

But i’m so very careful of the rocks

In the distance I see the lush

greenness of the vineyard.

The roots true. The vines ripe

Do I have faith in the landscape?

It still looks abstract from here.

I walk on with my shoes of hope

wearing clear blue skies and a

thawed out soul.

Still I worry about a change in

the weather, falling into a ravine

My spirit like a sacred dare

challenges me to forget my fears,

to journey on deeper into what

could become less or more.

His voice in the distance

permeates my darker self until

all I see is sunlight.

Who can say what dust will bring?

Wine or a cloud spun our of

misguided fate?.

For now the light glimmers

How freeing it is branching

it’s way out into the unknowns.

July 29, 2016 -Tosha Michelle


Here Are Two Additional Poetry Pieces From Tosha’s Blog:


Tosha Word Quote
Tosha Michelle (Unknown)

Thank you Tosha Michelle, for answering my interview questions. I enjoyed reading your answers and the books you have written both seem as if they’ll be great reads. I know the poetry will be awesome, but I think you perspective on dating, love etc. would be an interesting read as well. I hope everyone will check them out on Amazon. Also, love that you are an advocate for change for the terrible things happening in our world.


Would you like to share about yourself, your writing, and your writing process? Please reach-out to my through my Contact Page and I will send you some interview questions. I would love to feature you on my bi-weekly interview series, whatever kind of writing you adore. Thanks for reading 🙂


©Mandibelle16.(2016) All Rights Reserved.

February: Please Be Good to Me!


February Please be good.
http://www.quoteswallpapers.net
 I’ve been feeling pretty great lately. I never feel I’m one-hundred percent, but I am feeling better than I have in a couple of years. The medication change for me I went into hospital in July 2015 to complete, was effective. Although, it is difficult for me to wake-up earlier then 10:30 am on my best days, I am able to do activities around home until midnight. 

Sometimes, I do still have a particularly, tiring day, and I need to sleep most of the day. But I feel I am at my best in the night and can achieve many of my daily goals. This drug I am on, clozapine, is supposed to heal your brain and help you improve each month you are on the drug. I hope it continues to help my health improve. There are many activities in life I would like to have the energy to accomplish. But I am sleeping well, and when you have insomnia sleeping well is always a plus.

Before Christmas, I did not feel I could go out at night. I didn’t have the energy for it and making the effort to get ready at night was extremely hard. But I have found since I am doing better at nights, I have been able to do more activities with friends. I attended my my friend K’s surprise 30th Birthday a couple of weeks ago ( I think I mentioned that in a poem) and I was at the hostesse’s house from 5:00 pm to 1:00 am and I felt fine. I expected to regret it the next morning but I felt alright. I was a tad tired but nothing a nap couldn’t fix. The party was a fun time with lots of wine and interesting conversation. It is crazy to see friends from university ( and friend’s of friends) as adults, with husbands, and children of their own.

I have also been feeling much better in the day time. When I wake- up, it takes me awhile to feel myself, but after an hour at most, I feel normal. I am able to write, research, scrapbook, do chores, go for a walk, or go out for an appointment or a date — whatever I need to be doing that day. I still time my outings so they occur every two-days and it helps me not become worn out. But I am also finding that my motivation has increased as well as my ability to mentally concentrate. I can concentrate for I’d say five hours or so writing, reading, and/or working on a project for school.

I am also interested in doing things I haven’t done in awhile. Over Christmas I started scrapbooking photos again. I do them the old fashioned way, by hand. But I enjoy it and I have fantastic scrapbooks full of memories. I have this tradition where I make mini – scrapbook albums for my friends who have recently gotten married. Unfortunately, I wasn’t motivated to scrapbook in two-years so I am behind. I have more pictures of my own to scrapbook but  I have completed two wedding albums for my friends T and J.

I am also working on the PopSugar Booklist, sort of . . .I find I do not have enough time or energy left in the day to read, especially when I am inspired to write a great deal. I am still half-way through reading ‘a book with a blue cover’ and I don’t know that I will finish the book I chose. I started another book I enjoy reading. It is the final book in a Romance/Action set of five books. The story moves along quickly and I feel more into this book. The other one is a little blah. So we’ll see how the list goes but I’m kind of thinking I will read what I like and I have a new book with a blue cover. I have always been a person who hated to have specific books assigned to read, if the books were not about a topic I was interested in. I am always surprised when a book I am assigned to read is fantastic these days. I read to escape and have fun so it is better to read what I feel like in the spur of the moment. I pre-order a few of my favourite writers on iBooks but mostly I read a book I feel like reading at the time.

Hard Love Book
Hard Love #5 OF Hackers Series http://www.amazon.com
Writing is time consuming. Especially now that my novel is planned out. I am half-way through writing the book. Thanks to those of you who have been giving helpful and encouraging comments. The book is at a point where I have to start building towards the defeat of the antagonist and provide resolution for my protagonist Nina. I’m excited to do write more but each chapter is a lot of work. Even after I post a chapter, I see so many corrections which need to be made. I leave it for a few days and sometimes I still miss obvious mistakes and areas of the chapter which don’t sound quite right.I know after I’ve done corrections (sometime in the near future)I’m going to be going back and taking out parts that are unnecessary and adding in parts that are needed. I will be combining chapters, moving parts around, and breaking chapters a part.

Writing a novel is a long process I am learning, one which I have only begun. But my goal as I have said in some of my comments, is completing a first-draft. After the first-draft is complete I can start to look at helpful and constructive comments more closely and complete a better second and/or third draft.  I want to have my novel edited professionally eventually. 

If you know of any talented editors or you are one, please send me a note. I’m looking for someone who has experience but who is not too pricey. Might be impossible! But I am looking for the kind of editor who will look over the book as a whole. I can’t remember the title used for this kind of editor, the name escapes me. I will need this editor to be someone who will honestly tell me what works in my novel and what needs rewriting. After,  I will look at obtaining the services of a copyeditor. But I amthinking too far ahead. Those steps are a long way off. For now, I’m aiming for a complete first-draft.

—–

I had the pleasure, of having brunch at one of my bestfriend’s condo yesterday. I haven’t seen her in months so it was exciting to see her and her new fiance and hear all about their wedding plans and their other plans for their future together. The fiance cooked a wonderful breakfast. I was sorry I had to make them wait in the morning. My cab took off  when I told him to wait one minute for me to put my boots and coat on. He was already fifteen minutes late, so I guess hanging around was too much for him. Luckily, Co-op cab is awesome most of the time and the driver who came at 11:30 am was excellent. I am grateful I got to visit with S and her fiance A for awhile. And I am looking forward to their wedding at a warm destination in 2017. I will be saving my money in hopes I will have the health and wealth to be there.

S gave me a wonderful belated Birthday and Christmas gift. It was so thoughtful. I received loot from David’s Tea, including some lip balm which I needed because my lips are dry. The lip balm is like this lip balm (in the picture below) only a different flavour. It is infused with Tea for flavouring and is hydrating for your lips. S also got me some chocolate flavoured Tea from David’s which I was introduced to yesterday at her house. It’s yummy! I also received a wonderful tin of strawberry flavoured tea bags to make real iced tea in the summer so I am anxious to try that tea when the weather is warm.

David's Tea Lip Balm
David’s Tea: Tea Infused Lip Balm http://www.davidstea.com
S also bought me this awesome face mask from Sephora which was very moisturizing. It was called the Sephora Rose Sleeping Mask. I woke this morning with the most wonderfully hydrated skin. I thought there was a lot of mask in one package at first but I layered it on and it all sunk into my skin by morning. I recommend trying one of Sephora’s sleeping masks. The rose mask, if nothing else, is perfect for dry winter skin.

Sephora Rose Mask
Sephora Rose Mask http://www.sephora.ca
One of my favourite actors is an Irish actor named Jamie Dornan. S managed to find me an adult coloring book of Jamie Dornan. I thought it must have been a completely random find, but I love it and will attempt to colour in it and make Jamie look artistic. It is the perfect activity to do when I am feeling like not doing anything too stressful, just relaxing.

In case your interest is peaked, here is some basic information on Jamie Dornan. If you are wondering where you’ve heard of him, he used to be a famous Calvin Klein model and dated Keira Knightley early in her career. He was Christian Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey and will be in both sequels. He is also in a mini series in it’s third season with Gillian Anderson from the X-Files, called The Fall. Season 1 and Season 2 can be found on Netflix. I have also seen Jamie in a few other random movies; he is a talented actor and I think his career is only beginning. And I did like him as an actor before Fifty Shades, so we’re clear. I think he is incredibly hot as well, even when he wears a beard which he often does. But he is happily married to an actress named Amelia who is pregnant with their second child. Nevertheless  I believe I’m allowed a movie star crush.

Additionally, when I was on YouTube today watching the Pixiewoo’s in some of their latest makeup tutorials, I found a great Youtube video on how to do a polished chignon. It seems a bit complicated but it’s not. The video is easy to follow and the style is perfect for medium to long hair. I think you would have to do this Chignon on first day hair as the look you are trying to achieve is not messy but neat.

Chignon YouTube Video (You have to go into my blog on WordPress to see the video.)

 

I also was excited to replace my trusty original Ipad Mini. I saved up from Christmas and received a hundred dollars for my old one, and replaced the original mini with the Ipad Mini 4. This Ipad 4 Mini is faster, plus it has 64 GB of memory compared to my old one which only had 16 GB. It is great to write blog posts on and to slip into my purse if I’m going to a coffee shop because of it’s size. It holds my entire music collection and book collection with plenty of space left. I did not opt for the Ipad with a possibility for a SIM card as I can find excellent WIFI for my Ipad 4, most places. Glad to be able to use an Ipad again. My only complaint would be is Apple hasn’t managed to increase the battery life in four models.

One last topic to cover: I have been doing Weight Watchers online for about a month. I find it hard to stay inside the number of points you have available to eat, despite the fact fruit and veggies are worth no points. To bad they are so expensive right now! But I have lost about four pounds, that is what I put on at Christmas. I am continuing on with Weight Watchers trying to lose twenty-one more pounds. I’m not sure it’s possible. I am also looking into diet, energy, and weight supplements a friend is trying from a company called XYNGULAR. I did a lot of research on Xyngular’s products today. I am undecided on whether the products will truly work or not. I have read mixed reviews. I am going to an event with more information this Saturday.

The products are quite expensive so I would only want to do the products I want, not a package of products. Also, I think I have to be careful being on medications. A pharmacist did say the list of ingredients was okay for me but I have taken supplements before which  didn’t work because of their interference with medications and because they didn’t work. I might try a few products at the end of February. It is money back garuenteed for thirty -days, but that always comes with it’s problems. Wish me luck!

Thanks for reading!

Sun Shine Blogger Award


Thank you again ClCouch123 for nominating me for this award. I know I pick and choose awards but sometimes I have time for them and sometimes I don’t. But lately, things have been less busy.

Sunshine Blogger Award

Here are the rules for this award:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you for the award.
2. Display the banner/sticker/logo on your blog.
3. Share 7 facts or things about yourself.
4. Nominate 5 bloggers that you admire and inform nominees by commenting on their blog.

Seven Facts About  Myself:

  1. I hate cats. I know some of you love them so much. But I hate them and it is annoying when you post photos of your cats all the time, everyday. (There I said it! I like you, just not your cat)
  2. I am very allergic to some cats to the point where I start wheezing (explains number 1)
  3. When I was 12 years old I went to the lake with my family and got second degree sunburns from being out in the water, even with sunscreen applied regularly.
  4. My mom or I did not realize the sun burn was so bad until I fell off a zip line at the camp ground towards the end and I fell on my back and it hurt so bad. The sunburn blistered and was amazingly red.
  5. I hate camping. All the bugs and I’m allergic to most of nature and especially if you have to camp in a tent, that is awful. Even beer or Bailey’s can’t improve that experience.
  6. My drink of choice when I was in university was a Vodka Slime or if their were a lot of people and my two bestfriends and I were trying to make it easy on the bartender — rye and ginger. I grew to appreciate it, it wasn’t my favourite but it got better as you drank it 🙂
  7. My favorite kind of chocolate is mint dark chocolate. Purdys makes some very good ones.

Nominations:

  1. Livings Disrobed – an awesome beauty blogger who totally shares my taste in makeup.
  2. Angela Eve – Who writes about her College Odyssey. She is writing a book and has some great pieces of writing between her studies.
  3. Angie Trafford – The World of words. She is an accomplished writer whose Flash fiction I always enjoy reading.
  4. Strange Lander 2015 – I am new to this blogger but I like her writing, she is very talented.
  5. S. Writings – Dollops of Heedful Ramblings. I am also new this blogger but her work is delightful.

Hope you can all accept the nominations but  if you can’t I understand.

Liebster Award


Thank you Clcouch123 for nominating me for the Liebster Award. I have gone to generally having an award-free zone because they take up a lot of time that I don’t have. But since it’s Saturday and I had no plans to blog today I will gladly, with thanks, accept the award.

And a note for Christopher you can turn the list of names you nominated for this award into links to their blogs by going into your browser and copying the web address. Then click the button on WordPress that looks like a paper clip or a little link in a chain and paste the address you copied in the top and the name of the blogger or whatever you want to call them in the bottom. The link will turn a color like light blue. Does this make sense? Let me know.

Liebster Award Rules:

1. Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog.

2.Display the Liebster Award on your blog

3. Share 11 random facts about yourself.

4. Answer the 11 questions you were asked.

5. Nominate 11 bloggers with less than 200 followers ( this is too difficult, I’m not doing this) for the Award and have them answer 11 questions (of the 11 questions you were asked.)

6. Let the other bloggers know you’ve nominated them.

7. Copy the rules into your post.

——-

Ok, for eleven random facts about myself:

1. For Christmas I want a puppy. But I don’t think I’ll be getting one because I live at home right now and Mom doesn’t like that they shed. I miss my old dog terribly.

2. I just completed my Certificate in Residential Design so technically I could go work some place and be an interior decorator which is different then an interior designer. They require way more schooling.

3. I started a certificate in editing and found out after three courses, I am not a good editor.

4. I have naturally blond hair.

5. I am talented at drawing and painting, I just haven’t been at it in awhile.

6. My favorite color is blue but I like pink and black too.

7. When I have extra money to spend I usually end up buying makeup or some beauty product.

8. I have two younger brothers. One works in IT and the other is slowly getting his degree in Geography and planning.

9. My longest relationship is four years.

10. My favorite magazine is Instyle.

11. My favorite store other then Sephora is the Lindt Chocolate store.

—–

Questions:

1. What got you started with your blog?

I wanted to improve my writing skills and spend my time practicing writing after being very ill. It took a lot of work for me to be able to write in a more professional manner, equal to or better than the writing I had learned in University.

2.Post a link to a favourite blog you have written and explain why it is your favourite?

Midnight is one of my fav poems that I have written. I’m not exactly sure why. But it was midnight and I was tired. I suddenly felt like writing and this poem came out.

3. What is your favourite color?

Blue as I’ve said already.

4. Where do you get your inspiration for your blog?

I’m inspired by the things going on in my life and the events taking place in the world. I don’t always think about or know what inspires me, it’s instinctive for me to write how I feel. I enjoy writing about beauty and I like making up stories. I love poetry.

5. Where would you like to travel that you haven’t travelled yet?

I want to go to Italy so much to Florence, Rome, and Venice.

6. What was your favourite book or movie as a child?

I liked Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King. Sleeping beauty was good too. When I was very little I liked the books: Appley Dappley Nursery Rhymes and The Fierce Bad Rabbit. I remember liking Ping the Duck and later when I read chapter books I pretty much jumped right into Michael Crichton (sp?)  and Jurassic Park. That was also a fav movie.

7. What is your favorite season and why?

I like Fall. The weather is perfect and you can wear Fall fashion and a light coat and it’s just so lovely outside. All the colors of the leaves and lots to do.

8. Any goals for your blog? I would like to get 1000 followers and expand my creative writing. I would like to write more chapters for my book.

9. Do you have a bucket list? Yes

What is number 1? Be able to drive again.

10. Favourite thing to blog about? Life and beauty products.

11. What’s your dream job? Writing or blogging for a beauty of fashion company. Or writing my own book series.

——-

1. Deb: https://onceuponahotflash.wordpress.com

2. Luckjc007:

DOOM AND GLOOM

3.Susan:

http://susanspersonalblog.com

4. Steve:

http://walktheselftalk.com

5. MythRider:

https://mythrider.wordpress.com

6.Julesgem:

https://julesgemstonepages.wordpress.com

7.Nelkumi

https://nelkumi.wordpress.com

8. Joana:

https://salazarjoana.wordpress.com

9. WhenIThoughtIwasFat:

https://whenithoughtiwasfat.wordpress.com

10: SJ:

https://deliriousantidotes.wordpress.com

11.Greg:

http://greole.com/blog/

Thanks!

Amanda

Writing 101: Day 12 – Being Thankful and Shopping Sales.


Prompt: Critique something.   
I know that Black Friday is coming. Last year I avoided it, most of my Christmas shopping was done by that point. But from online shopping emails,  I noticed how great the deals were from both Canadian and American stores. I remember going to Banana Republic Canada’s website and seeing all clothes were 50% off. That hardly ever happens at Banana Republic! The best price you can get is 40 % off and that’s not often. In fact, it was odd to me that Canadian websites and stores were giving deals that were so good on Black Friday and they were better then the Canadian equivalent, Boxing Day deals. I like to shop, that’s not a lie. But I also have this part of conscience that is telling me that whether we are shopping crazily on Black Friday Week or Boxing Week, we are missing the point of the holidays these shopping marathons are based around.

The largest difference between Canadian and US Thanksgiving is when we hold our festivities. Canadians celebrate the second Monday in October and Americans the third weekend in November. But I know for both nations, it is a time for us to be thankful for all God has provided us with in our lives. For the plenty we have in our wants and needs. We remember so many do not have ‘plenty’ in other places in the world. We give thanks to be alive and for the relative peace we find living in our countries, especially when places so close to our hearts such as Paris, are attacked by terrorists. We eat large meals and see our family, whom we may not see all year. But to be specific, Wikipedia tells me, the first thanksgiving was celebrated in the US after the pilgrims first harvest in the New World in 1621. The feast lasted three days and in attendance were fifty three pilgrims and ninety Native Americans. In Canada, we simply celebrate the harvest and other blessings of the past year during our Thanksgiving celebration. But I wonder how such a time of thankfulness has become a shopping race, to find the best deals. To think of all we ‘want,’ instead of all we have. 

Every Black Friday or Cyber Monday we see Americans literally fighting over electronics and grabbing items from each other as if they were toddlers. People are pushy, loud, and not nice to each other. They think that if they act how they act, they’ll get all the items they want. It is all about “me” and “I” or “my family.” I have to say it is worse on Black Friday in the US, worse then it ever gets in Canada even though Black Friday is gaining force here. But I’m not sure deals will be as great this year with the fall of the Canadian dollar from near parity.

 What ever happened to being a decent person, sharing, and being thankful for what you have? You may get a great deal but at what immoral price? What are you teaching the younger generations when you gorge on food, say that everyone should be thankful, then push and shove in Victoria Secret over a bra, of which you have ten or more? Or, was it worth it to battle through bodies and buy a TV at a hundred dollars saving?

I know some of you Black Friday shoppers are kind. And that every person just wants nice things for their families or theirselves at a good price. Maybe you can only afford certain items on sale, so these shopping days are important. Things are pretty tame in Canada but there is always the exception. And it’s just my point of view, but I wonder how being thankful and all this merchandising, advertising, and worked up shoppers fit together.

 In Canada, we celebrate Boxing Day after Christmas. It’s origins lie in people boxing up their leftover food from Christmas meals for the poor. But instead, we shop with our gift cards and Christmas money for more of what we have, for stuff, instead of celebrating family and Jesus’ birth; instead of celebrating people being together. I just find it a bit difficult, putting Christmas and shopping hauls together. I still shop and I still celebrate with my family. But I try to remember that when I’m out buying merchandise there is a way to treat other shoppers with respect, not like they’re the competition. I remember that buying stuff is fun but only temporary. “You can’t take it with you when you go,” as the saying goes.Whether you can buy a lot of things or hardly afford any, in death we leave all our junk behind.  We need to remember that there  are people who can’t afford are grand celebrations at Thanksgivings and Christmas. We need to give money and our time to those in need. To give presents to kids whose parents can’t afford, or food to the family who can only go to the food bank.

 I think if we were more thankful we could see how it is for some people to have so little, while we have a lot. For some people a tiny gift or a helping hand is worth so much. Little things like God, family, good friends, and health should matter the most. Without them all the ‘things’ in the world are worthless. So, be happy if that is what you have and if your basic needs are met. Happy Thanksgiving Americans and start of the holiday season for many of us. May you be thankful and gentle when you shop and generous with your time and donations to those less fortunate. May you cherish the life you have because you’re a priceless person to many people you know and loved very much. 

  

Writing 101: Day 9 – Returning to Writing 


Prompt: To write or not write 

I’ll tell you a secret, I’ll tell you the truth. When I first became ill I could barely write, my hand shook like I had Parkinson’s Disease. But gradually I grew better at it until my own printing had flow and flourish again. My writing is somewhere between printing and handwriting. And yes, I still think kids should learn hand writing in school. Writing should be legible and neat and hand writing often helps with this. 

After, my printing I had to learn to read again. My brain knew how to read and I followed the words fine, but I could only read so slowly. I had to work up to a point where I could read a chapter or read for thirty minutes. Textbook type books and authors who chose to use words that were always complicated were difficult for me to read, even after I was able to handle your average fictional paperback and magazines. 

When those two skills had returned I knew I wanted to write again, the way I could write in university or even better. So, I began a blog and wrote for a magazine called Flurt. I was done with the magazine after a year and I began to take creative writing courses. I went through a grammar book to improve style and grammar in my writing. I took courses on WordPress multiple times. I took Writing 101, Writing 201, Blogging 101 and Blogging 201. I took courses on taking pictures a couple of times too. I got involved in Flash Fiction, I started writing a novel (still in progress), I did National Poetry Writing Month, and  I began writing my own fictional stories. I also began to share about my life and how mental illness affects me everyday, but I’m not defined by illness. I began to meet many other bloggers and to read, follow them, and comment on their work. You can learn so much from other writers. 

It’s hard for me to separate what I do besides writing from my writing. I took courses in Residential Design and those involved writing. I like going to TED talks Edmonton, when they are here. I love watching TED talks on the apple application for my phone and then I write about them. I watch YouTube videos. My favourite are by Pixiewoos who do makeup looks and tutorials. They are fantastic. I watch my favourite music videos on YouTube and I watch hair tutorials from http://www.thesmallthingsblog.com. She (Kate) is amazing and taught me how to style my hair. 

I go have supper, lunch, or coffee with friends. I go out for drinks some nights and on the weekend I enjoy a glass or two of wine. Malbec’s, Zinfandels, Cabernet-Sauvignons, and sweet white wines are my favourite. I can’t remember the sweet white wines because I forgot to take a picture of the labels with my phone.

 I clean up certain parts of the house; I spend way too much time doing my makeup; I visit family when I can; I read so much on my IPad; and I shop online and in stores depending on the product and my energy level; I try to eat healthy and do yoga and walk a little; and I write about my successes and failures with life. I always have access to my phone and in waiting rooms and waiting for appointments I write. But, I’m technically away for a couple of days writing a paper. So talk to you later and see below: 

1.While, I’m working please leave in the comments any blog prompts or ideas you would like to see or can think of. 

2. If you would be interested in some type of collaboration, a guest post or something like that, also leave a note. 
Thanks, 

Amanda