Monday, November 29, 2010

A Trini Thanksgiving

Greetings Glories!

Happy (late) Thanksgiving to everyone!  This is my first Thanksgiving away from New York and though my mom doesn't usually make turkey (she usually does chicken) nuff people send us food to last the whole week!  I know it's not really big in Trinidad, so I didn't really plan on doing anything.  That, coupled with the fact that I've never made a Thanksgiving meal before was enough for me to say "no turkey for me this year" and leave that alone.  Who tell me open my mouth? My loving boyfriend decided that he would give me a Thanksgiving in Trinidad.  And I might add, a Thanksgiving to remember!

One day after work he picked me up and we went to the grocery store to get our  our turkey, whom I lovingly named Henrietta, and all the trimmings to go with.  Our trip to the grocery was just about the closest thing to "normal" that happened this weekend.

Day 1: Time to thaw the turkey and the instructions read "thaw in refrigerator for 1-2 days."  We didn't have 1-2 days, we didn't even have 1-2 hours, so my honey put Henrietta under a running tap and thawed her out, which took quite awhile.  I helped too eh!  I got out the giblets and her neck (which was brutally stuck up her rear end!).  We rub she down with a salt and sugar mixture and popped her in a big pot with water and lemons to soak overnight in her briney bath.



Day 2: Your girl decided she wanted to make a Pumpkin Cheesecake after watching Kandee Johnson's YouTube video.  Boyfriend picked me up after work and we went to Xtra Foods to get my ingredients.  What ingredients??? They didn't have anything I needed.  Well, they had the basics, but the ease of the cake depended on premade ingredients like canned pumpkin puree and a ready made pie crust, neither of which they had.  Kudos to the workers though, because they really helped us search.  I was ready to give up and go home, because oh! I forgot to mention.. Henrietta was in the oven on her tummy being baked.  Turkey takes approximately 3-4 hours to cook, so I decided to pop her in and be back in time to turn her onto her back to finish up the cooking process.

Boyfriend didn't wanna hear anything about giving up, which is one of the reasons why I love him so much!  He pushes me, even though he knows he's getting in the line of fire, he pushes me and gets me to persevere.  "We'll use real pumpkin," he said (I was ready to use baby food, because essentially it's the same thing, but SO EXPENSIVE, lord.. babies ain't cheap!), "and make our own pie crust."  My boy picked up the piece of pumpkin and now it was just  look for graham crackers for the crust.  Surprise, surprise.. NO graham crackers.  I read online (via BB) that Digestive can work, so I was going to grab that when Boyfriend turned into the isle I was standing in with a big pack of graham crackers with the butter and everything already in it.  All I had to do was press it into the pie pan.  I'm always complaining about what Trinidad doesn't have, so he was all too happy to boast about his find.  Ok great, pie filling (check!), pie crust (check!), pie pan... err, we need to pick that up.  Low and behold, NO pie pans!  What they had was too small and too deep.  After debating for 10 minutes on what to do, Boyfriend remembered his mum has pie tins we can use, Hallelujah!  And don't forget, all this time, Henrietta is in the oven.

Ok cool, we got our ingredients.  Time to line up, cash, and pass by his mum to get the pans and jet out, because remember, Henrietta is still in the oven.  Ready to leave by them and guess what? The car won't start.  Boyfriend was suppose to go get gas, but with all the hustle and bustle he kept postponing it.  I won't get into details, but he asked a dozen people if they had gas or the approved container and even went to the local parlor, which had gas, but was closed!  And remember, all the while Henrietta is still in the oven.  All this calling and checking neighbors was being done inconspicuously, as we were trying to hide it from his pops, who tells him (often) to always keep his tank half full.  My best cousin ended up calling his friend who had a container which thankfully had gas in it (it would have been another thing to find an open gas station).  He dropped me home to turn Henrietta who turned a lovely golden brown color, it was just on the wrong side, because she she was long overdue a turn onto her back.

I turned on Sweet 100 F.M. to hear my parang, parang aiyee, aiyee (which is the only station I've been listening to these days, I practically have all their advertisements memorized), poured me a glass of wine and started to dance (practicing my bachata, salsa, and merengue) and began to cook.  Good times!  When he came home with the car, there was a glass of wine waiting on him and there was nothing to do but laugh!  And thank God that the house didn't burn down.

He helped me in the kitchen, which is so wonderful ladies, I hope your men help you out too.  And we had a DELICIOUSSSS Thanksgiving meal together.

Henrietta in all her glory.  The pan drippings made for a tasty gravy! I didn't have any twine to tie her legs, so I ended up tying together left over wicks from Diwali to get one long enough to wrap around!

left: my plate before I started to eat
right: my plate after I starting eating and Boyfriend reminded me of the potato wedges in the oven!

my beautiful and yummy double layered pumpkin pie cheesecake with marshmallows on top!

somebody was real enjoying his pie! LOL!

I'm thankful for so many things in my life and I thank God for my blessings everyday, but it's nice to have a day that you can really celebrate giving thanks, even though the holiday is based on a blatant lie.  Check out this blog if your interested in that: http://storiesinamerica.blogspot.com/2006/11/truth-behind-thanksgiving.html.  But really, there's so many things that we often over look that are worth our thanks.

♥,
[MMS]

P.S.  I didn't forget any of you all in my list of things to be thankful for, especially those of you who have took the time to click the "follow" button.  You all were mentioned in the pre-dinner prayer!  Thank you to my readers for reading, supporting, and commenting!  I ♥ YOU!
P.P.S. Don't forget to tell me what your thankful for in the comments below! ;]

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Style Files // Public Announcement


DISCLAIMER: The message on my tank top is for ADULTS ONLY PLEASE!  That is 21+ years of age. All you youngins need to ABSTAIN, ABSTAIN, ABSTAAAAIN!

Just another school day outfit.  I love graphic tees!  This particular tank top is from H&M's Fashion for AIDS 2009 Campaign and it was designed by Estelle.  C'mon.. you know, Estelle! "Won't you come over love, so I can show you love.  Promise I got enough to give you all that you need baby.."

(Photo Credit: FabSugar.com)

Estelle (or her stylist) adds a blazer and some pumps for a more sophisticated look.  Don't you just love how versatile t-shirts are?  You can go from day to night with the addition of a few key pieces.

It also looks really cute with some black short shorts for a more casual (and less school appropriate) look.

♥,
[MMS]

P.S. Yes, those are cockroach earrings! Thelma and Louise (their names) are very dear to me, okay? Heheh I paired them with this outfit to bring out the gold in the girl's shoes and earrings.  Plain hoops would work as well.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

WARNING: Paint Wheels Have NOT Been Approved for Use on the Eye Area!

If your into make-up, I'm sure you all have come across these Paint Wheels before.  What you may NOT have known is where they actually come from.  Ever heard of Lady Burd Exclusive Private Label Cosmetics? Well, they are a private label manufacturer that creates unique cosmetic products, emphasis on the word UNIQUE.  Their aim is to help people create their own image by adding their own branding and such to their products.

The following is an excerpt from their CEO's (Roberta Burd) address to her customers.  The full statement can be found on the about page: here.

"Exclusive Brand Development:
Design an ultimate product line that is completely you. Having the vision to create your own line is where it starts. Whether it is one item or an entire line, you can individualize each product by professionally silk screening or hot stamping your brand name and logo onto the component. This will give you the look you want and add value to your retail price. You will increase your profits by customizing a line for yourself because building a brand also creates repeat business through customer loyalty. Also, shade names can be changed to increase exclusivity. All labels are produced in-house. Shrink-wrapping is also available to prevent tampering of your products."

"All products manufactured by Lady Burd ® are done so in accordance with Good Manufacturing Procedure (GMP). We follow the recommendations of the FDA and our facilities are set up in accordance with CTFA Quality Assurance Guidelines. All formulas are in compliance with global requirements. All of our products are animal cruelty free.Lady Burd's prices are very competitive in today's global marketplace. We are confident that our quality and service cannot be surpassed. As your supplier, we can help you produce the best products possible. Our aim is to secure the successful launch of your products and support your company everyday."

Now that we've established exactly what the company does and the fact that they follow the recommendations given by the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration. An agency in the U.S. federal government whose mission is to protect public health by making sure that food, cosmetics, and nutritional supplements are safe to use and truthfully labeled.) and meet global requirements, let's take a look at their page:

Lady Burd's website states conspicuously on their page that the shades marked with an asterisk have NOT been approved for the eye area.. thats EVERY Paint Wheel except for one!


Bitchslap Cosmetics got into some deep doodoo on YT when their sponsored Guru's started backlashing.  The same people who were promoting the products starting bashing some of them for not being approved for the eye area.  I dunno if any of you all were following it, but there was some real bacchanal poppin off on YT over this issue.  Now the company has a warning on their website for items that haven't been approved for the eye area and such.  But, why is it that a company has to wait till they get caught to buck up on themselves? Sneaky, sneaky....

These things sell on Ebay and a multitude of different places (mostly small businesses) and it's very rare that anyone mentions this important info. to their customers.  Some companies even use the exact same names as the ones Lady Burd's use (ie. carnival, sprite, nightfall, etc.), so I think it's clear that they purchase from Lady Burd and have seen the unhidden notice in capital letters on the website and just choose not to say anything to their customers about it.

Moral of the story: I'm not saying that you CAN'T use them on your eyes, I'm just saying that it has not been APPROVED for the eyes.  MUA's and YT Guru's also need to be a little more careful with who they endorse, free make-up can be enticing, but not at the expense of your integrity.  And to the companies who sell these Paint Wheels WITHOUT the warning, shame on you.

♥,
[MMS]

P.S. The only color that HAS been approved is Nightfall, which is the blue one that appears at the top of this post.  Don't take my word for it, check it out for yourself: here.
P.P.S. Thank you to Nadia who brought this to my attention!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Style Files // Rainy Day Swagg

Hi hi!

First, I want to say that I'm a believer that certain people come into your life for a reason. And Rosa Espinosa came into my life, very briefly, and some what by chance, because she's the Boyfriends colleague.  She came down to Trinidad, from Panama to help merchandise the Converse Store and she happened to come with him to pick me up from school one day.  Turns out Rosa is a blogger!  I haven't been taking my blog too seriously and when I took a gander of Rosa's page... she put my page to shame, because she's so consistent with updating!  Her page is fashion oriented, but she blogged about her trip to Trinidad (we took her to the Nagar) and I thought to myself... WHY THE HECK DON'T I DO THAT?  She really made me remember how much I love to blog, ever since my days on Xanga!  So, I started doing just that.  Blogging about my thoughts and experiences, which is what Aesthetic Glory is about anyway: finding beauty in life!  So, THANK YOU Rosa!  You've inspired me!

Rosa's Blog: http://www.mystylishlittlesecret.blogspot.com/

Outfit of the Day // Rainy Day Swagg

Ok, so I woke up on this rainy morning feeling lethargic, as I usually do on mornings and the rain wasn't helping the situation either!  I didn't know what the flip to put on since 1/2 my jeans don't fit me anymore and I didn't feel like struggling with any nor being in anything tight.  So what does a girl do in a case like that?  Wear spandex of course!  My legs weren't shaved (bah, too much work) so I couldn't wear my 3/4 leggings.  I pulled out the long ones and checked my closet for top.  *Rule of leggings: wear a top that covers your cootch! PLEASE!*  I wanted something with sleeves (rain=chilly) and my eyes fell on the Boyfriends shirt!  It was a light blue shirt with pink stripes.  I paired with my leggings, slipped some flip flops on and I was off to school in my comfy outfit! I added some dangley silver earrings to the mix in an attempt to femme it up and make me look a lil more presentable and I was out the door!

Moral of the story: Check out your boyfriends gear, there's some things in there that will look cuter on you than it does on him!

♥,
[MMS]

P.S. Just for the record: Leggings are like pants.  Tights are like stocking type material, usually sheerer than leggings.  There is a difference! =]

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Festival of Lights Indeed!

Namaste Glories!

Me and my honey spent the first half of Divali day cleaning up.  Mopping, sweeping, dusting, laundry, all that drama.  So by the time 6'o'clock rolled in, we were extremely tired!  I got dressed, while he hung some red lights outside of our home (as seen in my last post) and yes, it's because I need the extra time!  If we both start getting ready together, he always finishes before me and left to wait.  So, I took my head start and while he was changing some of my family members stopped by while I was lighting our diyas.  I regret not buying more, but there's always next year.  I accompanied him and his mother to some family's house where I ate the most delicious food ever!  So good, I didn't even miss the meat!  Astonishing, I know.  After that, I had the itis.  I was ready cap out in d people place, no lie.  Went outside and played with my niecey for a bit (as seen in my last post) then we headed off to Felicity, before officially retiring. I'm told there was plenty traffic, but I can't tell you first hand, because I knocked out on the ride there.  If I show you all the pic my boyfriend took while I was sleeping, you'd die laughing.  He woke me up when we arrived and on the car ride through the town, I took some photos.  I apologize for the blurriness of some.  It's because the car was moving and we didn't wanna stop too long as not to contribute even more to the traffic.

It was BEAUTIFUL.  I've never seen nor experienced anything like it before.  Trinidad is a truly magical place during the holidays.




I want this lamp!

Glories, meet Rawan!




Looks like I know who I'm hiring to beat tassa at my wedding!










♥,
[MMS]


Friday, November 19, 2010

Shubh Diwali!

Namaste Glorious ones!

My first Diwali in Trinidad was a heavenly experience.  Technically, it's not my first,  but I can't remember much except for starlights, diyas, and bamboo bending.  I remember being surrounded by complex bamboo structures with countless diyas all around me, lighting up starlights half afraid I would get burned and throwing them as far as my little hand could manage (which wasn't very far, matter fact, I still can't throw very far).  And then there's a video tape of me running around the house in my little yellow dan-dan, click clacking all over the place in my white tuk-tuk shoes.  Other than that, I haven't experience a Diwali in Trinidad for any of my adult life.  And what an experience it was!  It was too perfect for words, so I'll let the pictures do the talking:

my home

My dad's Jandi


good over evil / light over dark (i really love this picture)

my cutie cousin, can't believe we're the same height now.. my how they grow..


need to frame this pic, its my fav!

my favoritest niece in the whole wide world



i look super bronzy.. dunno why because I didn't use any bronzer
(not Dale's best pic, but it's mine.. and it's not his blog, so ha!)

Rajkumari ^_^

A special THANK YOU to my boyfriends mum for giving me these gorgeous shoes!

my Rajkumar!


all concentrating on making his starlight bomb..

..1..

..2..

..3! Bombs away! (it went higher, but since this was my first starlight bomb, I didn't know what to expect, so I didn't get a good shot)

♥,
[MMS]

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Mehndi Lagake Rakhna!

Hey Glories

I had the pleasure of getting my mehndi done professionally for the first time ever.  I count this as my first time, because my real first time was bogus.  I went to Rani Ayurvedic Spa and Salon in NYC to get it done.  If your from NYC you've probably heard of them.  If your not from NYC, their name describes their aesthetic.  The rude young lady told me to pick from a book of designs.  When I picked the design I wanted, she told me the cost, which I don't remember right now and I looked at her like she was crazy.  Sensing the tension in my face, she told me I could get half of the design done for $20 USD.  I really wanted to have it done professionally, though I could have done it myself or have one of my friends do it for me, so I agreed.  She crookedly drew two scraggly looking flowers on one side of one hand and was done.  I was pissed.  Worst $20 bucks I've ever spent.  And the worst part is, I couldn't remove it.  I had to wait for it to wear off, while washing my hands countless times in an attempt to speed up the process.  Needless to say, I shit on Rani Ayurvedic Spa and Salon.  Their workers are rude, incompetent, and racist.  Not all of them, just most.  And every time you get your eyebrows done in their facility, you get a different brow each time.  Waste of money, but I digress.

I got my mehndi done in the Divali Nagar for $60 TTD on both sides of both hands.  The way was extremely long, since her prices were so reasonable, but it was worth it.  Navita freehanded the design, which I respected.  I hate the whole pick-in-a-book thing, because it's never gonna come out like the picture anyway!  She is a very pleasant girl with infinite patience.  I watched her deal with the most annoying situations cooly and calmly.  Not to mention I was bad talking her tattoo friend, Spider (before I knew he was her friend) about the shit job he did on my tattoo and she didn't seem to mind (I hope *gulp*).  Gosh Trinidad, you too small! Haha!

I believe she charges $25 TTD per side for house calls and resides in Londenville.  For anyone who is interested in her services, her # is 378-7822.

Before

After

Before

After

The color came in pretty deep, but only lasted about a week.  I actually still have a light orange tint on the palms of my hands.  I've read that it's advised to apply lemon and sugar to the mehndi before it dries in order to keep it on longer to achieve a darker color.  I didn't do that in this case, because Navita said it's unnecessary to do that when you use the premixed henna.  What I did do though was refrain from washing my hands with water, as to not hinder it from getting darker. I actually used olive oil to clean up my hands.  The mehndi continues to get darker in the next 18 - 24 hours after it flakes off.

*Disclaimer: There are a lot of different techniques people use to obtain a dark stain, as well as different "witches brew" which is the liquid mixture you mix your henna powder with.  Some people swear by certain methods that others disagree with, so it's really up to you to do your research and figure out what works best for you.

♥,
[MMS]