Brown Is The New Black

beauty, food, flights of fancy, musings

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Coming Up For Air

Sorry, but I have been boobs deep in taxes! Managing an office all day; when I come home, I’m just wiped out. Too tired to write and too tired to appropriately love my doggie. She, in turn, is boycotting me. It’s a fractured home ,y’all. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I’m too scared to walk towards it!!

Seriously, I made a promise to change my health for the better (d’oh!), so I joined Janell Stewart’s DietBet Challenge.  Wish me luck!

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The Joy of Pickles

Finding joy is a big goal in 2015. One way will be to make pickles! I love pickled foods and it’s easy to do. I always thought it was an arduous chore and frankly, a lost art. I didn’t make any last year and I was kind of sad about it.

Veggies are the easiest, as the recipes are more flexible. Fruit (as in preserves) should stick to the letter unless you’re a pro at canning. Seasonality will help you in selecting the best options for picking your items to pickle.

Here’s are recipe, courtesy of Saveur:

Pickled Cranberries

3 cups sugar
3 cups apple cider vinegar
3 sticks cinnamon, broken in half
1 teaspoon whole allspice
½ teaspoon whole cloves
½ teaspoon black peppercorns
¼ teaspoon juniper berries
1 ½ lbs. fresh cranberries,  rinsed
½ tsp. Kosher salt

1. Bring sugar, vinegar, and cinnamon to a boil in a 4-qt. saucepan over high heat; cook, stirring, until sugar is dissolved, about 3 minutes. Tie allspice, cloves, peppercorns, and juniper berries in cheesecloth and add to saucepan with cranberries; cook, stirring occasionally, until cranberries pop open, 4-6 minutes; discard spice packet. Divide cranberries and cinnamon stick halves between 6 sanitized 8-oz. glass jars with resealable lids and follow “Canning with a Boiling Water Bath” procedure.

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My To-Do List, 2015

Resolutions are never kept. Well, maybe fifteen percent? Anyway, to stay faithful to myself (and you, dear readers), my personal honey ‘do list for 2015:

Getting healthier
Travel more
Be kinder
More reading for pleasure
Find more joy in the everyday
Be more generous in spirit

This is the master list. Over the month of January, I’ll post about all the things I’d like to accomplish this year.

I wish you all a wonderful New Year. 2014 was challenging to say the least; my sincere wish is 2015 will be far more pleasurable.

To Beauty!

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The Liebster Award? OK!

This seems like a great Pay-It-Forward activity and I’m pleased as punch that Wildflowers & Curls nominated me for this task!

What was the reason you started blogging?

At first, it seemed like “all the cool kids were doing it”. As I read more blogs, I realized there’s a voice missing, which is someone with life experiences over the age of 40.

When you aren’t blogging, what do you enjoy doing?

Basically the things I write about: food, travel, movies, taking photos and shopping for beauty.

What is your favorite song?

There’s too many to have just one! Since it’s the holidays, I’ll pick Ella Fitzgerald’s version of “Jingle Bells”. It’s so much fun.

Do you have a secret talent?

The uncanny ability to find the most expensive item in the store.

Who is your favorite blogger/youtuber?

I love reading Awesomely Luvvie! Her ‘Scandal’ recaps are a thing of beauty.

What is one item you can’t live without?

I’d say my smartphone, but it’s really a great cup of coffee.

Who inspires you (celebrity/ author/ singer)?

There’s always Oprah. And Lupita Nyong’o!

How did you get your blogger name?

Wanting a voice that reflects my viewpoint, my world view. We know the beauty world doesn’t.

What is your favorite snack you can’t resist?

Anything that has a bounty of unami: sushi, olives, cheese.

What goal do you have for your blog?

I hope it can be monetized. If not, I hope to strengthen my writing to earn a living.

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Influenster Is More Than A Made-Up Word

I love writing product reviews. I have to say one of my favorite sites is Influenster! I fill out surveys, write product reviews and receive items I’ve never heard of or already love and write how I feel about them, yay or nay. The first VoxBox (free goodies to review) was hands down my favorite: not one but TWO full-size bottles of Palmolive dishwashing detergent.  It was great trying these out and talking about them. I’m still on love with Eclos Beauty, a natural skincare line that’s easy on the pursestrings but very effective.

I’m ready to use the app on Android, if it exists…is this to force me to buy a new iPhone? If you need me to test a 6 Plus, you have my address!


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