Thursday, March 26, 2015

Spring Has Sprung

Today was the first warm day of Spring and holy crap was it nice! Nova and I spent a few hours at our favorite beach with our bffs. Nova and Mila played in the sand while the mommies lounged around in the sun drinking slurpees. The slurpees may have been spiked. Don't judge. It's a mama's right to spike her own slurpee.

We've had a pretty nice end of winter, so I'm really looking forward to what spring and summer have in store for us. Maybe this year I'll even wear a bathing suit more than once!

Wishing you a happy, sunny spring!

Tess and Tigerlily

Find Your Own Damn Cup of Tea

I had intended to write an entire blog post stemming from my statement above, but every draft proved to be supremely offensive. So I'll just leave this here for you and offend 89% less people.

But for all the ladies out there who know what I mean, can I get an Amen?


Ok. I'm going to give explaining myself another shot.

Here's the thing. There's always someone out there who wants to tell you who or what you should like. As a single mom (aka damaged goods) I'm told I should like the nice guys with nice jobs, two kids, a divorce or two under his belt, maybe a few emotional issues here and there.

As a woman (and supposed feminist) I'm supposed to like guys who never look at my boobs without permission, never slap my ass, agree with everything I say, let me make the first move, and never get too rough in bed.

On the contrary, others will tell me as a young woman in the dating world (shut up, I'm still young), I'm supposed to make the men do ALL the work when it comes to courtship and I'm just supposed to shut my mouth and act perfect and indifferent and only accept guys who are willing to pursue the living shit out of me.

As a nice girl (am I a nice girl?) I'm supposed to like guys who want to hold my hand every minute of the day, stare lovingly into my eyes all night, kiss like a nun, and make sweet gentle love once a month.

I've dated the bad boys. And I've dated the overly good boys. Yeah, I understand the bad boys aren't exactly my cup of tea anymore. But neither are the really good boys. It turns out my cup of tea is something else...

I'm not actually into divorced guys with kids and emotional issues (but I could be, I guess.)
The fancy job doesn't actually matter (a job is nice though.)
It turns out I do like guys to make the first move (BUT I'm brave enough to do it, and will if I want to.)
I like being told what to do (as long as it's something I want to do.)
I like guys who are assertive (but I like to be assertive too.)
It REALLY doesn't always have to be gentle (like really.)
Humor is fucking necessary (I can't live without it.)
It turns out it's really more about chemistry (good romance to sexual energy ratio)
And it turns out I hate when a guy just wants to stare lovingly into my eyes for extended periods of time (it's like, WTF, my boobs are down here.)

I'm not writing this to promote MY cup of tea; a bad-boy looking hottie with a heart of gold who likes to be sweet but can also throw me around a little (sigh.) I'm writing this to express the importance of finding your own damn cup of tea. What works for one, might not work for another. Don't let someone else tell you who you should or shouldn't like.

I've tried dating guys who aren't my 'type' and guess what; it fucking sucks. It's not for me. I have a type and I'm sticking to it. However, I wouldn't even advise anyone to forgo giving the 'other' guys a shot and sticking strictly to one's own type; I would advise to give it ALL a shot and figure it out yourself. Date people. Does it turn out your type actually sucks and you should give someone out of the ordinary a shot? Try it. Or does it turn out you were really onto something when you only dated guys who wear footie pajamas to bed? Figure it out.

Find your OWN cup of tea.

Because you know what? Someone else's tea tastes like shit.

DIY Tinted Lip Balm {A Tarte Lipsurgence Hack}

Anyone who knows me, knows that I like to make EVERYTHING. I've gotten into making my own lotions, lip balm, body scrubs, and even perfume. One of my favorite DIY essentials has been lip balm. I'm really picky when it comes to what goes on my lips. I generally hate the smell of most lip balms, and hate the ingredients even more. So homemade was the way to go.

Now, let's talk lipstick. I LOVE red lipstick. But I'm even more picky about smell/texture/ingredients of lipstick than I am about chapstick. I generally HATE the smell of most lipsticks, I usually find the texture too thick and too drying, and the ingredients just plain suck.

The closest I've come to lipstick perfection has been the Tarte Cosmetics Lipsurgence line. The smell is perfect (peppermint), the texture is smooth and light, and the ingredients are tolerable. The downside? The ingredients could definitely be better, and worst of all, these lipsticks have a VERY drying effect on the lips, despite the brand's claims that they make your lips like a million times softer. Lies.

The obvious solution for my overly-picky ass was to make my own lipstick. Making a 100% natural lipstick turned out to be too complicated for me. I'm all about being natural but I'm also all about keeping shit as simple and easy as possible. What's a girl to do?

My solution: lipstick/lip balm hybrid using old lipstick! This is a terrific way to use up the remainder of your favorite conventional lipstick, while improving the composition of ingredients you are putting on your skin.

Now let's make it!

First off, we'll need a base: the chapstick. You can use any chapstick recipe you want, but in order to really hack the Tarte Lipsurgence style, you'll need to add Peppermint Essential Oil for fragrance, as well as that lip-plumping and tingling sensation Lipsurgence is famous for. If you aren't into peppermint, go ahead and use whatever chapstick recipe you like, or even use a conventional store-bought stick.

My chapstick recipe is as simple as this:
1 part coconut oil
1 part shea butter
1 part beeswax
Peppermint essential oil

Melt coconut oil, shea butter and beeswax over a double boiler (I fill a small saucepan with about a half inch of water, and then place a bowl over the top. The water gently heats the bowl, where I melt my ingredients together). Once fully melted, let cool a few minutes, and then add the peppermint essential oil, a few drops at a time, until it reaches desired fragrance. No need to get too crazy. A light fragrance goes a long way when it comes to your lips. Pour the mixture into empty chapstick tubes or lip balm containers, and then cool in fridge until solid.

Now you have your base. All you need now is to melt a small piece of lipstick into the chapstick! Obviously, you can do this BEFORE you let your chapstick recipe cool, but I like to make my tinted lip balms one stick at a time so I can make multiple shades and intensities.

So far, I've made two different recipes. One was a deep matte red, the other was a semi-sheer tint. You can control the opacity by changing the lipstick to chapstick ratio. The darker color was made using one part lipstick to one part chapstick. I used a small piece of an old stick of MAC Ruby Woo. The result was a dead ringer for Tarte Lipsurgence in Fiery. (The pictures came out pink, but in real life the color is a deep red.)
This one turned out very similar to standard lipstick, but with a smoother, more hydrating texture. Plus, the peppermint oil masked the less-than-enjoyable fragrance of the lipstick. I love it!

The second one was made using two parts chapstick to one part lipstick. I used MAC Lady Danger and the result was a nice poppy/coral red very similar to Tarte Lipsurgence in Spirited. The texture was light and the coverage was semi-sheer and build-able.
The possibilities are endless! You can do this with many other shades (or combinations of shades) and can change the ratio of lipstick to chapstick to suit your personal preferences! Mix up your new favorite shade for spring!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Where Are Your Balls? {my disappointments with modern dating}

I've been a single mom for over two years now, and for the first time in my life, I've experienced dating as an adult. It's a total blast.


From a distant perspective, adult dating always seemed so cool. Television made it look easy, convincing me that when you're an adult, you mingle responsibly in bars and get asked out by some handsome stranger. Or you fall in love in a charmingly awkward situation at a routine dental cleaning with your twenty-something babe of a dentist. Or that someone you once found utterly repulsive suddenly proves to be, not only your soul mate, but super hot too.

In real life, as an adult, you get shit faced wasted at bars and black out face down in the tub when you get home; handsome strangers don't actually ask you out; creepy strangers do. And that dental visit? There's nothing charming at all about that awkward dental cleaning with your mid-fifties dentist. And that guy you find utterly repulsive? He is still equally repulsive, if not more so, and continues to drive you nuts in the worst possible way.

In real life, there seem to be two scenarios for modern dating: 1.) get drunk at a bar and make out with someone. At some point they become your boyfriend/girlfriend 2.) online dating.

I haven't personally experienced dating scenario #1 post-mommyhood, but it seems to be just as popular as before I popped out a kid. Pretty sure that's how my friends have all gotten their boyfriends.

I HAVE experienced scenario #2, and boy is that one a doozy. As a single mom, with minimal free evenings for mingling, online dating seemed the answer. It's true that I've heard great things about online dating and heard of some terrific success stories, but my numerous experiences weren't so stellar and usually went something like this...

Online dating, day one. Browse. "Holy shit, look at all these hot guys! Wow, look how much I have in common with all these tattood bearded man-babes!" Wink. Send convo. No reply from hot man-babes, but tons of winks and convo's from dudes completely NOT my type. Get disappointed. Lower standards.

Day two. Still feeling pretty good about online dating. Send a few more winks and convos to the guys I actually find attractive. No reply. Lower standards.

Day three. "Holy shit, I'm way less like-able than I thought! No one likes me and it's already been THREE WHOLE DAYS! MY LIFE IS OVER!!!" Lower standards WAY down. Go through your inbox and second guess your decision to pass on the dudes you didn't like at first. Settle for someone remotely tolerable. Get in relationship with the first guy who likes you.

Ok, maybe some of that is a cruel exaggeration, but there is some truth there. Long story short, I don't think online dating is for me. Besides, I'm too weird. Guys online don't go for weird. And the ones who do are way weirder than I can handle. And pretending NOT to be weird doesn't work for me. I'm actually really good at pretending to be normal, but it makes me miserable. Meeting strangers one on one for small talk just isn't my thing. I'll have to stick to dating scenario #1, and see how that goes. Unfortunately, even the drunken bar scene has its downside...

For one, why must I have to get drunk and eventually make out with someone in order to start a relationship? Why can't someone just ask me out like they do on tv? Maybe they do, and I'm just misjudging the modern dating scene entirely, but I get the feeling that men these days are looking to women to make the first move. Or alcohol.


I feel like modern men have been trained to fear women and hide their balls in a ziplock bag instead of just asking a girl out. Don't get me wrong; I don't trust a guy who isn't at least a little afraid of me, but what happened to the days when a cute random guy would just ask for your number? Why is it only creepy guys who have the balls to do that? I'm all about feminism, sure, but a guy who takes the lead is like 95% more attractive than a submissive one. I might turn you down and laugh behind your back, but I'll respect your confidence. I like being submissive in relationships, but I can't do that if you don't show me your balls. (Not literally.)

And here's another question: where do I fit in the the dating world? Who the heck am I? I'm NOT a party all night/weekend/day/week/hour kind of girl. I'm wholesome as fuck. I have a daughter and I'm an awesome mom and absolutely LOVE my cuddly, wholesome life. But I'm also weird and have tattoos, like certain types of music, and have an often raunchy sense of humor. I'm too wholesome for the wild dudes and too wild for the conservative soccer-dad-types who actually date single moms.

Yeah, adult dating sucks. I spent the first several years of my adult life in consecutive long term relationships, which developed from different variations of dating scenario #1. When I first became a single mom, I thought there must be a better/cooler/more adult way to meet people. Turns out there isn't.

But in order to move past my cynicism and develop a healthier, more hopeful mindset on love (you can read about my struggle with believing in love here), I'm going to take everything I've just said with a hefty dose of good-hearted humor. I'm more excited about just having fun and enjoying life than seeking a relationship. I'm optimistic that shit will happen when it's meant to, just like it always has. Dating scenario #1 has never let me down before (depending on my current perspective), so why knock a good thing, even when it isn't as cool in real life as it is on tv?

And even though the world is swarming with submissive men, the right guy will have all the right balls in all the right places. So if you feel like the dating world is getting you down, just repeat that mantra. You're welcome.