Saturday, June 30, 2012

I Won Again; Beauty Products from Fellow Bloggers


Yes, I won another give-a-way!

I know it probably seems like a cruise the web in search of give-a-ways, but I don't really, I just so happen to see the Tweet or announcement then fall right in.

This time, I won beauty products from Creatively Yours by Ro and Elle Sees. Both ladies have informative and adorable beauty blogs. Check them out.

I am more than tickled that I won both products because they will come in handy as I make my transition to a resident of Abu Dhabi, UAE. Just in case it takes a while to find a person for brow maintenance, I have the products I won from Creatively Yours by Ro. Inside are: Brow Gel, Universal Brow Pencil and tweezers all by Billion Dollar Brows



Gotta love the upside down picture.

The item I won from Elle Sees is by Travalo. It's a refillable perfume bottle. I enjoy wearing various fragrances but I am always concerned about putting them in my checked bag because TSA "permanently borrows" my stuff and some of the bottles are too large for the carry on. The Travalo Refillable Perfume Bottle is an alternative for carrying my body sprays during travel.





I'm sending a huge thank you to Creatively Yours by Ro, Elle Sees, Billion Dollar Brows, and Travalo for my items. I can't wait to try each of them.



This is NOT a sponsored post. I won each item through their respective blog give-a-ways.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Guestlist by Jay Fingers {A Book Review}





Ever since I snagged my iPad, I've developed a peachy bond with eBooks. For me, eBooks provide the same experience as my beloved hardbacks and journals. I love the illusion of page turning and earmarks. With this new phenomena, eBooks prompted me to revisit fiction. Previously, I avoided fiction like the plague because they typically lacked the type substance and engagement I craved.  I've found many fiction eBooks at minimal costs or free so the affair began.

During my hours on the Twitter Playground, I came across a cool guy named Jay Fingers. I believe the conversation started because he mentioned something about Memphis. Being that Little Rock is my hometown, I dipped right in. From there, we chatted, tweeted about, and ultimately he released his novel, Guestlist.  Guestlist is a tale set in NYC that gives rise to lessons that are familiar, poignant, and pivotal


It took me about two days to read Guestlist by Jay Fingers. The book is engaging, with great character development and a good story line. His use of words created the perfect picture of life in NYC. I became so involved in the book that I nearly hated one of the main characters, Napoleon, and his antics so I am hoping for a bit of reprieve in either another story or a part II. The main characters, Juliet and Ava, align with many of "our" personal tales of coming of age, relationships, and growth. I loved how there are key story lines around the male characters because this isn't found in a lot of urban literature. The last few pages confused me a bit, I understood the story was winding down, but it seemed to have just stopped. The conversation between Mere and Juliet needs clarity or there's something wrong with the eBook version because a few paragraphs repeated. 


Overall, great story. It makes you feel that you're 20 something in NYC. I am eagerly awaiting Jay's next tale.







The above pictures are not my property and remain the property of the original photographer and designer.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Audition to Become NBC's Next - FASHION STAR!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Dear Acura Customer Service,



Dear Acura,

There is a troubling and on-going issue with your customer service department. Since I purchased the vehicle, 2 years and 1 day ago, there has been nothing but mounting problems with your customer service department.   I have reached my wits end with you people because of the trail of disgust that you all create each and every time I call customer service ("1-800-382-2238"). 

Yesterday was the day of all days. Again, I had the unfortunate pleasure of speaking with Reps "K", "L", and "J". After wading through streams of auto prompts, I was finally connected to the disgruntle Rep K. I am going to assume that Rep K is fairly new because instead of listening to me, she wanted to over talk me and ONLY restate what she thought was formal policy versus listening to the entire question. I was appalled with how she decided to handle this call. She yelled, became impatient, and was grossly condescending. After what seemed to be an eternity, she put whom I thought was her supervisor on the line, Rep L. 

The conversation with Rep L only lasted a few seconds because she began the call with "What is it that you want us to do because I am only going to restate what Rep L said?" Excuse me ma'am but may I at least state the question? No sooner than I attempted, she uttered a scream and slammed the phone down. By this time, I was livid. I scrambled and hunted for the corporate number, which isn't listed anywhere or on anything that I have, so I had no other choice but to call the aforementioned 800 number. This time I reached Mrs. Smooth Talking Rep J. Rep J kept her cool for the most part  as she was determined to solve the problem. She absolutely refused to transfer me to the call center manager as I indicated at the beginning of the call. She gave stern proclamation that she was indeed a Sr. Customer Service Rep and could solve anything. I didn't want to speak with her, I wanted to chat with a manager. She refused and her condescending tone ensued. After badgering her for the corporate address, P.O. Box 1027, Alpharetta, GA 30009, she informed me that I needed to follow call center protocol and chain of command. Ma'am I am NOT an employee of Acura, I am an ON TIME PAYING CUSTOMER. She didn't get it. I told her that I would write a letter instead since no one seems to give a complete answer. She then implied that my letter would fall upon deaf ears because Acura routes customer complaint letters to Sr. Customer Service Reps. I informed her that I had spoken with managers on all previous calls but apparently, I did NOT, they were only Sr. Reps posing as managers. This practice needs to be null and voided ASAP. 

After hours of arguments with Acura reps, I turned to social media for help. It seems that your social media team is a bit more aligned with the pillars of customer service as they responded to my cries for assistance. However, I was again directed to the aforementioned customer service number. Shortly thereafter, on another social media site, a message came requesting information then a bit before 8 pm, an Acura rep gave me a ring. By then, I was exhausted and couldn't repeat the incident yet again. 

So Acura, this letter only highlights the disturbing incidents of one day. There are mountains of incidents that I've had with CUSTOMER SERVICE since June 25, 2010. There is a gap in stellar customer service and the mimicking of service that you provide. As an instructional designer with almost 15 years in education, I can come to any of your call centers and design a solutions-based plan that includes on-going professional development. My skills include but not limited to; developing learning objectives/outcomes, interacting with SMEs, identifying core learning needs, creating visual aids for face-to-face and multimedia, developing assessments, and organizing evaluation data. Your customer service needs a major overhaul and reorganization. This is NOT an isolated incident yet a two year on-going fiasco.

Acura, your cars are stellar but your customer service department earned the biggest F in American history.




Tags: "Acura Customer Service", "Acura", "Acura Complaints" "Acura Better Business Bureau", "Acura Alpharetta".

Sunday, June 24, 2012

West Side; California Pizza Kitchen (CPK)



Ok, the gig is up!

I'm sure you guys have guessed it; I go out to eat A LOT! I know it's not always the healthiest option, but it sure is fun. I like to think of it as my way of helping the US economy; spreading my dollars near and far. I don't post all of my restaurant choices because if I did, it would like more like a food blog than a lifestyle blog. However, all women eat, so, let's have a "sit down" about food.


BBQ Chicken Salad


Cooking is not my favorite activity. It takes a lot of thought, planning, and energy....something I'd prefer NOT to do after commuting and working amongst fools other people. Therefore, I opt for restaurants. I've seen the California Pizza Kitchen in nearly every city that I've lived or visited but I never stopped in.



Artichoke and Broccoli Soup

Last month when I visited my sister in DC, she suggested California Pizza Kitchen since we were in the Pentagon City area. I sorta tooted my nose and gave her major side eye, but she didn't care, so California Pizza Kitchen it was.


To my surprise, the place was stylish and quaint yet filled with DC conservatives. The mood was light. It helped that the day was amazing. It was about 75 degrees, sunny skies, and a warm breeze. As you see, we opted for a light lunch because we had other shopping to do. 

Overall, I give it a thumbs up. 

It was also very budget friend.


Have you ever eaten at California Pizza Kitchen?


This is NOT a sponsored post. I went to California Pizza Kitchen because my sister said so and and we were hungry. However, the server did give us coupons to use on our next visit.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Wonder Twin Power; Activate! Tia & Tamera Mowry



I've lived under an entertainment rock for the past year because I am just getting into the Tia and Tamera Show. My Twitter peeps and some of my other friends who live in my computer have chatted about Tia & Tamera but I didn't take heed. It is perhaps that I was swamped under mounds of "other" reality TV.



I've learned that this show has been on for quite some time and I've missed out on a years worth of greatness. I've been a fan of the twins since their days as the curly head teens on Sister, Sister. Like many others, I've admired how they've kept their brand modern and fresh. Though their new show gives an intimate glimpse of their lives, it is without cut throat drama and poor presentation. Therefore, for the rest of the summer, in between packing and preparing for my move to Abu Dhabi, I will catch up on every single Tia & Tamera show. 
Life couldn't be great if I didn't.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

eStyle Me - Zara Colored Blocked Heels


Like every good girl in fashion land, I snagged these Zara Color Blocked Heels. 

However, I don't know exactly how they will be styled.

eStyle Me.

What should I wear?

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Previously on #HPBD... Friends of Facebook


Repost from June 26, 2011

___________________________________________


                                               

Unless you've lived in the mountains with no electricity or under a rock with mold, you know that Facebook is the leading social media network of the present. It is a platform for connecting with former classmates, co-workers, and distant family members. It is also a medium for appreciating TV shows, companies and entertainment. Facebook (FB) has millions of members which gives one ample opportunity to reconnect with the past. However, FB can give rise to unresolved tiffs, disagreements, High School (HS) rivals or a host of hotmessness shenanigans. If you adhere to the following, your FB experience should be drama free and quite enjoyable.
  1. FB is a social media platform. Therefore, members are going to put their best foot or false foot forward. Therefore, only believe a fourth of what you read and see.
  2. Some people need to stay in the land of FB. If he or she were wild, hoes/tramps uncooth, and tacky in HS, more than likely they are now. Yes people change, BUT very few divert from those old behaviors. Beware of this person.
  3. Beware of the FB Pimp. Ho.com The FB Pimp is the guy who cruises through all of the pages of his FB friends. More than likely he was that popular jock in HS and "the man" but now he's average to loser status. You can identify the FB Pimp by his high number of friends which are primarily women. Secondly, he typically posts messages of inspiration and spirituality all while inboxing each and every woman with "Hey Beautiful" and his Cricket/Metro cell number. This dude's goal is to get laid and if it's not yours, keep it moving.
  4. Have minimal expectations for the meeting or conversations if you choose to chat or meet offline. Remember Rule 1, FB folks put their best or false foot forward so when the meeting occurs, um, it just might not be what you expect.
  5. If you decide to meet anyone offline, always meet in a public place especially if the two of you haven't connected in many years. Believe it or not, some former classmates have untreated mental illnesses or have ulterior motives.
  6. Ideal candidates for FB meetups are former classmates who were the middle of the road folks. These people weren't excessively popular nor were they in the geek/nerd/undesirable crowd. These people are usually very successful, well grounded, and more apt to show you a good time.
  7. Possible FB meetups...the geeks/nerds. This one is tricky. Many times people who fall into this category have issues with being socially awkward. If they have grown out of this and not off the deep end, these can be good meetups too.

All and all, FB is good for conversations online, sharing photos, small talk, and watching TV shows together. Meetups can be fun and successful if not, file it under mess.com.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Over the Heel...



Heel less heels are the rage among forward, progressive, fashionistas. You've seen them on everyone from Lady Gaga, Beyonce, and Rihanna, just to name a few. The fascination surrounding the mile-high, platform kicks is a bit wonder and part wow.


I'll admit that I am intrigued by the aerodynamic design and the lofty platforms, but I have resolved to pass on the trendy design unless a modest form is made. However, I understand that the platform is the support of the shoe but it is that very platform that is a problem for me. I'm 5'10 and wearing a 6 inch heel would make me 6'4. Therefore, unless I'm going to an NBA tea, I'll refrain from the mile high kicks.

They are cute though. In my dreams, I fancy a pair.

So dolls, are heel less heels a part of your footwear?



Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Finding Fun in Fitness



Spring and summer has a way of stimulating the interest of fitness in many of us. During the winter, my fitness routine becomes MIA and by body becomes a bit cozy. 

It's that skin showing season again and time to show more leg. 

Additionally, in about 7 weeks, I will be off to a new land with temperatures that float into the 100s on many days. Therefore, I believe less of me would be best. However, I am not a fan of exercise. It's a requirement for health but it's just not fun. 


I've tried everything from gym classes, group runs, Zumba, and the spectrum of DVDs. I like Walking Away the Pounds best or strolling around my subdivision but all 'n all, finding fun in fitness is BLEH.

What do you do to put fun into your fitness routine?

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Saturday Shout Out v. 3 (Male Edition)


It's shout out time again. This month's "shouts" are male bloggers that I dig. They vary in content, style, focus, disposition, and delivery.

Enjoy! Seven shouts, seven new MALE bloggers....

1. Jay Fingers. (www.becoolent.com) - As usual, I ran into Jay Fingers on Twitter. He's the author of the new hit novel, Guestlist. Guestlist is a provocative, contemporary tale set within New York City. 

I finished reading Guestlist last week. I could go into detail about every single character but I don't want to give the story away. Guestlist is available on the author's site, Amazon, and Kindle.

2. Minus the Bars. (www.minusthebars.blogspot.com) - I couldn't tell you how I found Don's blog, but I'm glad I did. 


3. Mr. Goodwill Hunting. (www.rashoncarraway.com) Rashon is the GURU of "thrifting". He has taken the world by storm with his charming, sophisticated style by completing or complementing a design with "thrifted items". Look for "I Love Thrifting Day" events in a city near you. It is guaranteed to be a bigger success than last year. July 7, 2012...be there or pay full price .

4. Follow Your Hart. (www.scenewithahart.com) - As I embark on a new chapter in my life, I happened upon Fidel's blog. He's a black American who travels frequently via work and play. Words can't describe the gorgeous pictures from each of his destinations. I encourage all of you to "travel" with him as he explores the world.

5. Single Black Male. (www.singleblackmale.org) Single Black Male is an award winning blog that lends the male perspective on everything from pop culture, politics, music, and fashion.

6. Pushing Social. (pushingsocial.com) - Social media strategist and coach. If you want to take your blog to the next level, this is the blog for you.

7. Everyday Cookin' (everydaycookin.com). Darius is a master in the kitchen. He's a self-made super hero with sugar, spice, and everything nice. This is a first person account because I had the luxury of attending a private dinner party with all things Everyday Cookin' He made his delicious braised short-ribs, veggies, spirits, and the best cupcakes in America.

These are my seven picks, seven blogs, and seven shouts....

Tell me what you think!




Thursday, June 7, 2012

Hanging with the Obamas


Those of you who follow me on Instagram know that I have totally neglected my blog and all forums of social media as I had a 10 frolic through the streets of DC. Perhaps I was on official business, hanging with the Obamas, or just enjoying all the loveliness that gentrification brought the our Nation's capital, Washington, DC.


Prior to moving to the "city country" of Atlanta, I was a resident of the DMV. For those outside the area, the DMV is a term we use for DC, Maryland, and Virginia because the area is so intimate. In parts of DC, one side of the street is DC and the other is Maryland then going to Pentagon City or something is right across the bridge, therefore no one really makes a distinction unless ummm Baltimore comes in the conversation. That's another bird.

A few of my college friends and foes still reside in the area so I chatted it up with them a bit but I mostly hung with my sister, she lives in DC. We did a lot of this and that and a bit of nothing. If you guys haven't been to DC in a while, it has an entirely new look. DC has put the gentrified dollars to work. There are amazing condos and shops everywhere. Dining is a delight and there are Yuppies & Buppies on bikes wheeling through the corridors of U Street. I couldn't take it all in during my 10 day stint, so I'll return during the latter part of summer, probably before my departure to Abu Dhabi. 

My apologies for neglecting the blog. I'm doing a revamp on my own but it's not working so please sent recs for blog designers. My former girl is on maternity leave and such.



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