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Susan's Spa

Your number one stop for beauty and blogging tips, all in one fabulous blog!

Friday, April 28, 2006

When A Thing Of Beauty Is No More

Did you ever find a great product that you absolutely love and just cannot live without? Once you've found it, you never want to be without it. You never give a second thought to whether or not it will be discontinued, or that the company who produces it will suddenly and inexplicably, go out of business. This, my friends, is what happened to me. For the last few years, I have been using this amazing eye balm. I only use it at night and it has done wonders for me. I don't know what's in this stuff (that's not true, I do know the ingredients), but I have the eyes of a 25 year old (okay, well maybe a 35 year old). I actually had an inkling that the stuff would be discontinued when Home Shopping started to list it with their clearance items (a sure sign that it would not be around for very long). I grabbed as many tubes as I could and used them as sparingly as I could, since the company (Physician's Advice) seems to be now defunct. Lately, I've been scouring the pages of beauty magazines and online services to find a similar product. This is no ordinary cream mind you. This is a lovely, soothing eye balm that keeps the skin around your eyes soft and dewey looking rather than tired and wrinkled. So far, nothing has popped up that is even remotely similar so I will keep looking until I find something that is just right and will be reasonably priced enough so that I won't have to ask my kids to give up their dreams of going to college. If anyone has any ideas, leave me a comment, otherwise you'll find me at Sephora!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

A Day Of Silence For A Rainbow Of Reasons

Yesterday students across the country went through their school day without uttering one word. This day of silence was aimed at highlighting the intolerance that gay and lesbian students have to deal with all the other days they go to school. Many school districts here where I live were very supportive of students participating in this event......except my district. In fact, my daughter was one of many middle school students who went through the school day, not uttering one word. She wore a rainbow sticker and carried a letter that explained to each of her teachers why she would not be speaking. The students who organized the day of silence in her school were given in-school suspension because it was "against school policy" to do such a thing. I'm very proud of my daughter for participating in this event, even though many of her teachers and most administrators were visibly annoyed with her for doing it. A parent always hopes their children will not turn out to be bullies or bullied. I'm just glad I raised my kids to stick up for what they believe in and stand their ground. On the other hand, I'm ashamed of my district for being so narrow-minded. How can they expect children to learn tolerance, when they themselves are so intolerant. Kudos to those public school districts, colleges and universities across the country for supporting their students yesterday. As one student put it "One person not speaking will make a difference. It might even be more effective than an entire group because maybe people will say, 'Wow, this person is trying to make a change'".

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

American Idol - Who's The Next To Go

Every once in a while I like to blog about my favorite reality TV show. Almost all the way through it's fifth season, this show still has me hooked (wish I could say the same for 'The Apprentice', which is now giving away money to viewers just to keep the ratings going). After last night's performances, I'm convinced that the next American Idol will be a guy and that guy's name is Chris Daughtry. He seems to be able to nail almost every performance, while Elliot trailed only slightly behind him with his performance. I suppose it's time for a guy (a rocker guy) to win this year, especially since Bo Bice lost to Carrie Underwood last year. Funny, his name and image pop up everywhere, while Carrie seems to have bit the dust (in my part of the country anyway). It will be interesting to see who goes tonight and I predict Kellie Pickler to be that person. She's cute, she's adorable, she is soooooooo Jessica Simpson, but we've already got one of those, so, as Simon likes to say "Off you go!"

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

My Favorite Theme Park Ride

In answer to my blogging friend Ashley's blogging carnival question about my favorite theme park ride, it would have to be "It's A Small World" at Disney World. There are some things in life you never get tired of and this is one of them. I've experienced this ride when I was young for the first time and I was amazed at how utterly enchanting it was. I've gone back many times and brought my kids there when they were young and they were equally enchanted. I've got many fond memories and photos to go with them. There are rides that are far more technologically advanced now, but nothing will match the magic of this!

Another Blog Carnival

My blogging friend Ashley is hosting a blog carnival on her blog (The Kid Within, check her blog out under my links). The theme of this blog carnival is to name your favorite ride and/or theme park. Since Ashley's blog is all about great theme park vacations, you may be able to get some ideas from reading her blog. Your blog submissions can be made at this link Blog Carnival Call For Submission. Thanks Ashley!

Blog Explosion Sold!

If you're a member of Blog Explosion, then you got the same e-mail I got this morning, that Blog Explosion was sold. This seems to be the norm with these services inasmuch as when they become extremely popular the original owners sell them (for a very nice profit I might add). In any event, I hope this proves to be a good thing for all of the members since they will be adding new and improved services, including instant rental approval and merchandising (anyone for a Blog Explosion t-shirt?).

Too Much, Too Soon

I started writing this blog nearly four months ago. It's hard to believe that time has passed so quickly. I write about what interests me most in terms of my lifestyle and knowledge, but I hit a brick wall yesterday after watching 'Oprah'. The show highlighted two young mothers and a teenage model who had developed symptoms of either an eating disorder and/or distored images of themselves. It was painful to watch the video of the three-year old child belittle her own mother for not allowing her to wear make-up because she thought she was ugly without it. It was even more painful to watch the video of the four-year old tell her mother she only wanted fruit because anything else would make her fat. The teenager, who was a beautiful model, couldn't even look at herself in the mirror because she thought she was so hideous to look at. These young girls were receiving messages from their own mothers, even verbally or otherwise, that because they (the moms) didn't feel good enough about themselves, then neither did their daughters. It made me wonder how my own daughter felt about herself, since she was watching the show with me. I was surprised to hear that she didn't think she was pretty at all, but in fact, I've always told her the opposite. I realized that maybe how I view myself culminated in her own poor self image. Ironic, given the topic of many of my blog posts.

Monday, April 24, 2006

When Your Hair Stylist Is A Bigger Star Than You

There's a not-so-new hairdresser who is celebrating his second season reality show on Bravo. This is no ordinary hair stylist. He has run his fingers through the tresses of some of the most famous diva celebrities, including Madonna. If you want to have Johnathan (he goes mostly by his first name, as do most divas) cut your hair, it will cost around $500 and up and you'll probably have to wait five months for an appointment. He's not only the star of his own reality show, but he can also be seen on QVC hawking his hair products as well as a water filtration system, which promises to leave your hair as soft as a baby's. If you've ever caught him in action, then you will either be drawn to him like a magnet or so repulsed by his behavior that you will run as far away from your television as your feet can carry you. He bitches and moans when people don't jump or roll over fast enough and he's constantly primping in front of any mirror he can grab. If this show (Blow Out) is any indication of the direction in which television is going, then we are truly doomed as a society. In this reality show, we are treated to two divas for the price of one whenever Johnathan's sister, Robin, shows up. She is the creator of Las Vegas' Pussycat Dolls, and she takes every opportunity to remind the viewing audience of this fact. In one of the latest episodes we see Johnathan meeting with his shrink (the same shrink we saw on Danny Bonaduce's reality show). We see Johnathan break down in tears, as he laments "I am so over me". Me too too!

Beauty Product Reviews

I tried two new products this week. The first was the daily deep moisturizing lotion (SPF15) from Dove. This is a facial cream that can be applied during the day, as it contains sun protection, and can also be applied in the evening because of the rich, moisturizing formula. It's great for dry skin, but not at all greasy and it's an incredible bargain for under $5. The other product I tried was L'Oreal Natural Match Color. I had been using another L'Oreal product which sells for between $18 and $22, but it's a two-step process and I didn't need to do step two. I wanted to find a color that matched the one I have and I was able to get the exact match with the medium blonde shade from the color match system. This product sells for between $10 and $12 and can be found in most drug and discount stores along with all of the products from Dove.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Rain, Rain Go Away

I rarely write personal posts or digress from the topics of my blog, but today we are taking my son to tour another college. It is another ugly, rainy day, just like the last time we went to tour a college. I'm wondering that maybe this is a sign from the heavens above that he shouldn't go away. In any event, we have a long drive today and it should be fun sloshing around in the mud all day. Hopefully, you all are having sunny weather where you are or staying in a warm, dry a shopping mall!

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Cool Blog Tools

Here is a great new blog from my blogging friend, Michele called Cool Blog Tools. We all need a little help tweaking our blogs and finding ways to draw more readers and Michele does a great jog with fast and easy suggestions that won't keep us tied to our computers all day long. Go visit her and tell her Susan sent you!

Turning Down The Volume

There are so many products on the market to add volume to fine, limp hair. For someone like me, who has more than enough hair to go around, volume is the last thing I'm looking for in a hair product. Finally, a company who understands this concept, John Frieda, has come out with a volume reducer, appropriately called 'DownPlay'. This is a wonderful, clear serum, that you use after shampooing and conditioning and before styling. Just a quarter size will instantly take slim down dense, puffy hair for a sleek and streamlined style, leaving hair shiney and managable. I used this brand new product for the first time, but I was very skeptical, worrying that it would weight down my hair. I was more than pleasantly surprised that the product exceeded my expectations and gave me a salon look for under $7. You get five fluid ounces that will probably last at least thirty days.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Dontcha Wish Your Cell Phone Was Just Like Mine?

No, this is not a photo of my cellphone, although somewhere underneath all that bling, is probably the exact same phone I have. I'm sure it's no surprise to any of you that you can get your cell phone to look just like this one, all bejeweled and sparkly. I believe this one actually has real gem stones and probably costs in the thousands, but you can go to any accessory store, like 'Claire's', and purchase kits with colored crystals, to glam up your phone to your liking. Swaroski even makes a kit with their precious crystals, that comes in an adorable organza bag, in which to store your personalized phone once it's all done up. The newest bejeweled accessory is a chain (sparkly, of course) that you can attach to your belt or the inside of your purse so that you never lose your precious little entity. I do believe our cell phones have become the 'pet rock' of the 21st century....and, if you don't know what a pet rock is, go google it!

The Reluctant Prince

According to sources close to Prince (another words, people who were once close to him, but now hate his guts), Prince has to be dragged on to 'American Idol', kicking and screaming in order to get him to coach the remaining contestants and then perform on the night of elimination. Apparently, he really hates the show (even though he's never watched it, but probably just hates the concept alone), but loves the idea that his CD may rise up the Billboard charts as it did for Barry Manilow and Kenny Rogers. So, we may see a reluctant Prince (how would you know the difference anyway) coming to 'American Idol' soon, although no viewing date has been announced. By the way, when you google Prince for images, you get every member of the royal family, including Prince Albert apples and Prince, the rubber ducky!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Update On BlogMad

As an update to my last post regarding Blogmad's setback, I ended up joining again and the upside of this whole debacle is that they gave me 25 points. Since I couldn't remember my stats, I never bothered to e-mail them about my membership, so now I'm once again, a newbie, which is fine with my, but is pissing off anyone else who had 'killer' status with them. In the end, my favorite surfing site will still be Blog Explosion, but it was nice getting those 25 points from Blogmad.

Latest Fashion Trend Is A Fashion Don't

Whenever I hear the word "leggings", an image of Oliva Newton John singing 'Let's Get Physical' pops into my brain. The other image is of Jennifer Beals, before she played a lesbian on 'The L Word' dancing furiously to 'She's A Maniac'. The other image is of me when my kids were babies. Leggings became the 'stretch pants' alternative of my mother's generation, that allowed me to get dressed in a hurry to get where I was going with two little kids in tow. There was nothing fashionable about it. It was easy access clothing that allowed me to be where I had to be. It also kept me in denial about a weight issue that I needed to address. The leggings kept me from myself so to speak. When they went out of fashion, I finally came to the realization that I had to whip myself into shape so I could wear jeans once again. Then some genious found out how to incorpate spandex into everything including cute white t-shirts and my favorite jeans. Now, leggings are back in style as shown in the picture. Cute, calf-length and worn with skirts and dresses. This is not a fashion trend that can be attempted by just anyone. I believe the qualifactions for this trend is to be under a size '2' and under the age of 14. Anyone else attempting this look, does so at their own risk. I can safely say I will pass on this look and wait until someone can come up with something that women my age can wear!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Setback for BlogMad

If you've tried to log in to BlogMad today, you may have gotten the same message I got, which basically says, you have to sign up again. Apparently, they lost a lot of their data and when you do sign up again, you have to give them your stats (if you can even remember what they are). I like BlogMad, but not as much as Blog Explosion. They have a good ratio (1:1), but not Blog Advance just announced that they are matching BlogMad's ratio. So, if you have signed up for Blog Advance, you can do so right here. They will give you 50 credits just for signing up.

Isn't It Ironic?

Brooke Sheilds and her husband (maybe the man pictured here with her, or just someone who looks a lot like Will Ferrell) welcomed another baby girl into the world yesterday. I just found it somewhat ironic that Brooke and Katie Holmes had their baby girls on the very same day. Katie is the woman Tom Cruise loves to bash furniture for, while Brooke is the woman that Tom loves to bash for writing a book about her post-pardum depression. Now they are forever bound together in some cosmic, parallel universe because their girls were born on the same day. I wonder if there's anything in Scientology about that!

StriVectin For The Hands

The folks who brought you the product with the slogan "Better Than Botox?", which was supposed evolutionize how we treat wrinkles at home, have not brought you a product for the hands. Strivectin for the hands can be purchased in the same stores as the original products for the face and eyes, but before you go spending between $50 and $60 or more for something that promises to turn back the hands of time (do you like the pun?), wait a New York minute and before you know it, a knock off product will be offered in drug and health food stores for a fraction of the cost.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Do You Think He's Sexy?

American Idol featured Rod Stewart tonight. First of all, just let me say, the man looks great for his age. If he's had any surgery, it's hardly noticeable. Let's not even mention that he's going on his third wife and, I think, eigth or ninth kid, but what a cute kid! I don't know how hard he worked with the contestants, but he sure looked like he was having fun and six out of seven contestants did an amazing job on his collection of songs from 'The Great American Songbook'. Happily, Rod will be going back to his rock n' roll roots on his next CD. It's about friggin' time!

TomKat's New Baby!

Well, apparentlly the most obnoxious couple on the face of the earth have successfully (and silently) brought a new, little Scientologist into the world. Baby Suri arrived, uneventfully, weighing in at a little over 7 lbs. Of course, she was not allowed to cry (it was, afterall, a silent birth), but that didn't stop Tom from screaming and jumping all over the furniture shouting "I love this baby!!!".

One Rant Away From A Nervous Breakdown

I recently found out that a fellow blogger is being chided for keeping a blog about a hobby she very much enjoys. I find this incredulous that people would be so narrow minded in this day and age. I guess next to pornography, blogging is probably the number one hobby on the internet. Millions of people all over the world do it for a myriad of reasons including, making money, sharing ideas, political views and religious faith, not to mention gossip and the latest on technology. Blogging is an amazing creative outlet that reaches many more people in one day than anything else on the internet, including message boards. I've met the most amazing people through blogging and have indulged myself in many ways through blogging, including making some money. So for those naysayers, all I can say is "quit ur bitchin' and go blog urself!".

Zapping Zits

A reader asked me the other day if I had any information about Accutane. I've never had any personal experience with this medication, so I did a little research and what I found was more negative, than positive. Accutane, a medication taken orally, has been often prescribed by dermatologists for a few years now, to treat moderate to severe acne. Although, it is probably warranted in some cases, newer studies reveal that it is probably over prescribed and, considering the numerous side effects, should probably be the last option in treating acne. Acne has been described as the skin's inability to peel itself, trapping oil and dirt underlayers of dead skin cells. As a result, continuous breakouts occur on the face, neck and sometimes back area. However, there is much more to choose from in the way of treatments. The active ingredient, Benzoyl Peroxide, was introduced some years ago, as a treatment for acne (usually 5% in over-the-counter treatment). Although, this has been found effective, this alone cannot do the job. Products containing Salicylic Acid are very popular now and can be found in many over-the-counter treatments, including Proactiv. Another ingredient found to help fight and stave off acne is glycolic acid. This used in combination with products containing Salicylic Acid work wonders in helping the skin to peel itself in order to properly remove all oil and dirt to prevent breakouts. Neutrogena is always adding new products to their acne line. These products are affordable and easily accessible and include a line of foundation with Salicylic Acid for women. One of my favorite product lines is from Serious Skin Care, which can be found on Home Shopping and in Ulta ( and They have a complete acne line called Continuously Clear which includes their moisturizer, which helps to keep skin from becoming too dry, but will not clog skin pores. This product also contains Salicylic Acid. They also have a daily Glycolic Cleanser, which although is not part of the acne line, when used in conjunction with their acne treatments, can help clear up skin and keep it clear. Since I believe in a holistic approach to everything, it's important to eat a healthy, balanced diet and find ways to alleviate stress. Both diet and stress can be culprits in acne break out as well.

Monday, April 17, 2006

I Blog Because......

I love it! Yes, I make a little money and initially that's why I began doing it, but now I am perpetuated by the creative process and by all the other bloggers that I've met along the way. Thanks for reading, commenting and sharing your blogging knowledge with me!


Yesterday I wrote about Tag Cloud and how it's a great idea, but I couldn't add it to my blog page because of atom feed, which is ancient and was causing all kinds of errors for Tag Cloud. A blogger friend of mine told me about Wanabo, which is also a tag service. I was able to add their code to my template and have it work on my blog. So, if you cannot use Tag Cloud, then try Wanabo Tag Service for your blog. Just go to and sign up!


I've written about '24's star, Keifer Sutherland previously, and although I'm not a huge fan of the show (I'm the black sheep in the family when it comes to this show), I do like Keifer Sutherland (what woman doesn't?). This is old news already, but it was announced last week that Keifer had signed a three year contract for the show, which means two things: it will be running for three more years and he's not dying this season. How comforting for all his fans.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Virtual Hairstyles

Did you ever want desperately to change your hairstyle, but were so stumped as to what to tell your stylist that were walked out feeling like you wanted to wear a bag on your head for the next six weeks? We've all been there. Of course, salons often have books available to look through, but what if you don't see the style you want? Then what? Preparation for a change in style or color is your best bet and now you can do it on the internet well in advance of your hair appointment. One site I have vistied which I really like and which is very user friendly is Everything is broken down into categories, so finding a style is just a click away. Just print it out and bring it with you so your stylist has a good visual idea of what you want.

Don't Let Clouds Rain On Your Easter Parade

There's a wonderful little item you can add to your blog from Tag Clouds. Essentially, it's a cute little box, which you design yourself once you sign up with them, that will pull as many tag words from your blog as they can find (you choose the number of words you want displayed in the box). You can color coordinate the tag cloud to match your blog and if you can get it to work, then it should draw more traffic to your blog. I say, if you can get it work, because I tried adding it to my blog, but it won't display. Apparently, my blog server uses a nearly extinct RSS feed, which is really what you need to power your tag cloud, and because of all the errors, it will not display. If anyone has a solution to my problem, I'd love to hear your comments! Happy Easter and don't eat too many peeps!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Gotta Blog

There was a great article in today's Newsday (Part 2) about how baby boomers are blogging like crazy. I have to agree with the main thrust of the article, that blogging becomes addictive. I'm not only addicted to the creating aspect, but am equally addicted to reading other writer's blogs There is just no end to the introspective thoughts, humour, creativity and observations of bloggers, although I could live without the ones that only feature naked women (could you be any more mundane?) Blogging is the perfect outlet for people who love to write and many have gone on, or are in the process of having books published as a result of blogging. One blogger writes something that I can definitely relate to, "When I see someone has blogrolled me, I think...they like me, they really like me" (flashback to Salley Field accepting her Oscar). It's nice to make a little money while blogging, but let's face it, we all still want validation. Two blogs mentioned in this article are and


Don't you just love FREE stuff? Well, here's something you can do that won't cost you one penny....sign up with That's right, it's absolutely free to join and take advantage of their online support, message boards, recipes and reviews of all the diet products on the market. Upgrading your account is a snap for just $2.99 a week and will get you more personalized services to ensure your weight loss success. I finally signed up myself since I want to lose a few pounds before the summer. I had previously used another internet diet service that wasn't nearly as comprehensive as and cost me much more money. Just look for the button in my sidebar!

Friday, April 14, 2006

How Do You Pamper Yourself?

Is there something special you do for yourself and you would like to share with other bloggers? Then head on over to This is not only a great blog, but the owner is running a blogging carnival right now and if you answer the question "How do you pamper yourself?", your answer will be posted on her blog. Just include a link to her blog on your blog page.

Desperately Seeking Susan

Remember that awful movie about a housewife from New Jersey, who leaves her husband in hot pursuit of some guy who left a cryptic personal message in a newspaper? That woman, ends up meeting up with a character played (poorly I might add) by Madonna and it's all about their madcap adventures to find some hideous jewelry. Anyway, this post is not about that movie per say, but more about how I try to find myself in the life that I now live. I guess I began thinking about it after watching a show hosted by you-know-who, wherein women are on a quest to get back in touch with who they once were, instead of who they are now....moms! Being a mom is, by far, the hardest job in the world and there's nothing that precedes it to prepare you for your mission. In doing so, one is immersed shoulder high in everything from diapers, to athletic equipment to designer jeans and letters from colleges trying to steal your child away from you. Somewhere along the way, I lost a good part of who I was, and I yearn to get back to myself. I have fantasies about running away and entering a witness protection program. I've even considered contacting Windermere Real Estate to buy a separate residence in another state and not tell anyone about it......not even my husband. They are only fanstasies though and I'll never actually go through with it, but it's nice to dream. In the meantime, you can find me home, trying to change the child at a time!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

American Idol Update - Bye Bucky, Hello Rod

Well, Bucky got the boot last night. He is a really likeable guy, but really is only capable of singing country. I'm sure he'll be snapped up by some record company, but in the meantime, next week AI welcomes Rod Stewart to the show to coach the contestants with songs from his 'Great American Songbook Collection'.

Your Eyes Don't Lie

Years ago there was a song by a band called 'The Guess Who" who had a hit song entitled "These Eyes". If you don't remember it, then you can skip this post, but if you do and your a woman who is increasingly bothered by the aging going on around your eyes, then here's a quick beauty tip to give your eyes an instant lift. You will need a color palette like the one to the left which is from Maybelline (Expert Eyes). These shadows will give your eyes a great wash of color, without screaming "I'm wearing eye shadow dammit!". First use the middle shade to cover your whole lid. For flawless application, get rid of those horrid little sponge applicators and buy yourself some great application brushes ( After you've applied the middle shade, apply the next darkest shade to the crease of your eye, emphasizing the outer corners. Line your eye with the darkest color and use the lightest shade just under your brow bone. Make sure you blend adequately, but don't pull too much. Also, get in the habit of using an eye treatment every day to fend off any further signs of aging. One of my favorites is Oil of Olay Regenerist Eye Treatment which not only will decrease the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, but will also take care of your dark circles. This is a great multi-tasking eye treatment. Finish off your look with mascara. Maybelline makes some great mascaras. The finished look will give you the appearance of an instant eye lift.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Tuesdays With Barry

I know, it's not Tuesday, but I was thinking about this yesterday on my way home from work. Every Tuesday I play Barry's latest CD in my car (Greatest Hits Of The 50s) in my car on my way to my classes. His voice is soothing and whatever stress I've got, melts away with the first notes of "Moments To Remeber". There's a very good reason why his newest CD debuted at #1 and why his new DVD "Music and Passion" debuted at #2. Like him or not (please don't leave me any comments about how much you hate him), he is still one of the most beloved vocalists of our time. That's why after his last appearance on 'American Idol', his latest CD was the most googled of any other artist, the following day. He is one of the hardest working people in show business and his only goal in life is to make you smile! So, if you haven't gone out and bought this CD yet, don't spend another day without it. There's an Amazon button on my blog and you can order directly from there. If you order over $25, you get free shipping and handling. Sometimes, you just need a break from reality. What better way to do it?

Arm Candy

What's the first thing you think of when you see "arm candy"? Some of you may be thinking Hugh Hefner's latest bunch of blonde baby-girlfriends, but I think of handbags. I don't write about fashion that often, but I do love to accessorize. Isn't our ability to accessorize what's sets us apart from the rest of the animal kingdom? Maybe you can't afford to buy yourself a whole new wardrobe every season, but you can afford to buy yourself a couple of great new bags, belts, bangles and beaded espadrilles. Since the hot look this season is bohemian, get yourself a great straw handbag with leather trim. You can go for natural earth-tones or a bright-striped bag like the one in the picture. Whatever you do, don't spend a fortune on a straw bag. One woman told me that she considered spending $300 on the new, hot straw bag for the season, but at the last minute changed her mind. Good move! You can opt for a flea-market purchase if you are on a tight budget or check out fashion discount stores like Marshall's or TJ Maxx for great buys on name brand bags. I got a great straw bag a couple of seasons ago by Tommy a garage sale. It was in perfect condition and very-well made and it's still in use, which only goes to show that you don't have to be Ivana Trump to look great! Besides, she still looks likes she's stuck in the '80s. Happy Shopping!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

When Blogging Is A Carnival

Have you ever participated in a blog carnival? This is a great way to not only get a chance for you to share your thoughts on a particular topic, but it also helps expose your blog to potential readers. One of my blogging friends is holding a blog carnival right now on her blog. If you answer her blog carnival question about making money on the internet, she will post your response on her blog. Don't forget to include a link to your blog, so other people can see what you wrote. In return, all she asks, is that you include this link in your blog Free Survey Lists & More, which is where you go to for the Blog Carnival!

Not Your Mother's Hairspray

Remember when your mom used to spray her hair with Aquanet to the point where it was so stiff, it actually hurt when you touched it? Although you can still purchase this product, if you want a great hairspray, look no further than Matrix. My new favorite hair product is the Color.Smart Gloss & Guard Hairspray from Matrix. It not only gives back the shine which sometimes get lost in color-treated hair, but it leaves hair soft to the touch as opposed to stiff and lacquered feeling. Since Matrix products are color-coated (blue for Volume, black for Vavoom hair, peach for smoothing products), look for the purple bottles and containers which is their Color.Smart line. You can go to for more information.

Making Pilates Aerobic

Finally, we are getting some nice, albeit slightly chilly weather here in New York. Soon the trees and bushes will be in full bloom and after that comes beach weather. Knowing full well that I will have to eventually get into a bathing suit, I made the decision to purchase a Pilates machine. Although I've practiced Pilates on the floor, when I'm finished I pine away for the day when I can have a machine that will help me do the work. Finally, that day has come. This is called the Aero Pilates machine and it not only enables you to perform all the Pilates movements, but the jump board at the base of the machine turns your Pilates machine into a treadmill. This mini-trampoline enables you to bounce up and down, while lying down on both or alternating legs, which increases your heart rate for a cardio work out. This is truly a gift for someone like me who suffers the lingering effects of injuries acquired form performing yoga for many years. Pilates is truly a much gentler exercise. Afterall, it was created by Joseph Pilates many years ago to help dancers who suffered from injuries while performing their craft and to keep dancers from acquiring further injuries. Machines like this are often very expensive and certainly not portable, while this one was purchased for under $300 from QVC and it actually folds up in the middle for easy storage and weighs only 30 pounds. For more information go to

Monday, April 10, 2006

Those Uber Olsen Twins

Those trendy, fashionistas, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen have two new fragrances in their coast-to-coast collection. The first is Soho Chic, with hints of cassis, sparkling watermelon and musk. The other is Malibu Style, a blend of guava, pineapple, white jasmine and bamboo. Both will sell for $15.95 per bottle and are touted as being fun and fresh, particularly the Malibu Style. In other fashion news, Philosophy brand skin care has unveiled Joyful Heart Shower Gel for $20 at which will help promote awareness and raise funds during April which is National Sexual Assault Awareness month. Mariska Hagarty from 'Law & Order, Special Victim's Unit' started the Joyful Heart Foundation in 2002 to help survivors of sexual assault heal. Another Philosophy product 'Laughing Gas' which is a room spray is being sold at for $16.00 and the proceeds from this will be donated to the National Colorectal Cancer Research Allicance, co-founded by CBS's brand new sweetheart, Katie Couric.

Teach Your Children Well

Since I have nothing new to report on regarding beauty or blogging, I wanted to share with you something that my son did yesterday. He belongs to an organization made up of kids his own age, that occasionally raise money for other non-profit organizations. In the fall they had a bake sale and raised money for victims of hurricane Katrina. Yesterday, they sold adorable stuffed cows for an organization that helps families in Africa purchase and maintain dairy cows so they can feed their families through out the year. Their goal is to raise $500 and yesterday they met their goal half way. They won't stop until they raise the whole $500. Needless to say, I'm very proud of both my children for thinking globally from time to time. Being a teenager often times if a very self-involved process as evidenced by such shows as "Laguna Beach" or "My Super Sweet Sixteen". We expect kids to always believe the world revolves around them, but the truth of the matter is that there are lots of kids out there who don't have a problem giving up their Sunday morning of sleep to raise some money for a good cause. Yes, I think some of their music sucks and their clothes are more expensive than mine, but hopefully, I believe that my husband and I have passed on some good values to our children as evidenced by yesterday's event. I think it was very appropriate with the coming of Easter and Passover and I wanted to share it with you all. Peace!

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Just For Me

'For Me' magazine for women is the great, relatively new magazine for women that is celebrating their anniversary with this month's issue that includes a picture of Sara Jessica Parker on the cover (not Angelina Jolie as pictured to the left). The other thing to note is that it is no longer at the introductory price of $1.45, but at $1.95, it is still a bargain and jam packed with everything you would want in a magazine. Lots of fashion and beauty advice, best buys, interviews with celebrities, recipes, interesting articles, decorating tips and more. Magazines are such a great source of information for women, next to the internet, but most sell for over $3.00 and can be the first thing that goes when cutting the fat out of your budget. Here is a magazine that gives you all the information as those heavy-duty glossy ones, but for about half the cost. Go to for more info.

Google Indexing

Here's a little known fact that some bloggers need to know in order to get their blogs indexed by Google. When you begin blogging, you will see "Links" in your sidebar. Underneath, you will see "Edit-Me" usually twice. These are placed there so that when you finally do add links to your blog, you can put them in place of "Edit-Me". If you have no links to add and you are not intending on using that "Edit-Me" space any time soon, then remove both the "Edit-Me" place markings so that Google will go ahead and index your blog. If Google sees those "Edit-Me" placements still on your blog, they will consider your blog a work in progress and will hold off indexing your blog until it is finalized. You will want your blog to be indexed by Google so that when readers begin doing searches, your blog will be among those that are listed by Google.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Picture This!

I finally figured out how to upload a picture to add to my blog. It only took me about four months to figure this out. Now that I've done it, there will be no stopping me! Why did I pick Barry's picture to be first? Because I like him! He looks like he's thinking to himself, "It's about time genius! I'll be back soon!

Friday, April 07, 2006

Yet Another Favorite Blog Don't discount this one if your not a fan of Barry Manilow. This lady is incredibly talented and has one of the most entertaining blogs yet! Don't forget to leave her a comment and tell her Susan sent you!

A New Favorite Blog

ONLY IN BELLINGHAM is my new favorite blog. Go over there and visit and tell Craig, Susan sent you!

Nice'N Easy Friday

I usually do a TGIF post, but since I tried a new product last night from Clairol, I thought I would tie it in with a friday theme. The product is Color Boosting Glaze from Nice'N Easy. This is somewhat similar to the L'Oreal Glaze Gloss that came out a couple of months ago. This system is slightly different in that the directions say to apply on slightly dampened hair, as opposed to the L'Oreal Glaze which is used after you've washed and conditioned your hair. Since my hair needed to be shampooed I did that first, and applied the glaze to towel-dried hair. This product is to be left on for five minutes, whereas the L'Oreal product is to be left on for three. On the plus side, this product contained a very nice conditioning treatment which is to be applied after the glaze is rinsed out of your hair. To be honest, it felt like it needed to be conditioned, whereas the L'Oreal Glaze doesn't. However, the conditioner left my hair feeling very smooth and silky. I like the condition and tone of my color after I use these color glazes and it's an inexpensive way to boost color and shine in between color touch-ups. Both products can be purchased for under $10 in drug and discount stores and both will give you more than one use, especially if you have shorter hair. Have a nice'n easy weekend!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

More About Hair Blowers

Since I posted about hair blowers, I received another question about the cost of ionic hair blowers. First, for those who don't know the difference between a regular hair blower and an ionic hair blower, then let me explain. A regular hair blower dries hair from the outside in which can leave hair looking dry and frizzy. The ionic technology allows hair to be dried from the inside out, which means a hairstyle that looks soft and shiney as opposed the dry and frizzy. Initially, they were more expensive, but now you can purchase several brands if ionic hair blowers for around $20. The most expensive will probably be around $170 for a professional grade hair blower. For more information, go to

Love Means Never Having To Say You're Sorry...Yeah, Right!

Yesterday was a very stressful day. First of all, I only got three hours sleep the night before so I started the day groggy and grouchy and no amount of caffiene would take off the edge. I had to rush to get ready for my first class and, of course, whenever I'm rushing, the phone rings. I have to answer it because I always think it's one of my kids so I stopped rushing around and picked up the phone. It was my oldest husband. Of course, whatever he had to say was of great urgency (it always is). His timing couldn't have been worse and he caught my wrath big time! I called to apologize afterwards because I always hate leaving things badly and besides, I had to face a classroom of four year olds in less than thirty minutes with a big smile on my face. The remainder of my day was overcast, a lot like the weather we had, which included an April snowstorm. When my husband came home later, the first thing he did was apologize to me for not thinking first (gee, what a concept!). I really did appreciate his apology and the rest of the night I felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. The whole idea that people shouldn't have to say they're sorry because they love each other is ridiculous. Without acknowledging someone else's feelings, there's no validation. How can there be love, without that? The moral of the story is when in doubt say you are sorry and if that doesn't work then send flowers!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Company's Coming

There are several times a year when holiday season strikes fear into the hearts of women all over the country. It's that time of year when you know you will have to entertain and serve dinner for at least twenty of your husband's closest relatives. First there's Thanksgiving, then there's Christmas/Channukah and now we have Easter/Passover coming just around the corner. You can see the look of terror on a woman's face as she pushes her shopping cart through her local grocery store, her mind racing wondering what she will prepare that her mother-in-law isn't allergic to. Then there's the thought of house cleaning. You can't possibly entertain on your dining room table with three week's of folded laundry and a week's worth of mail piled high. Of course, you can always get Commercial Folding Tables instead and then you don't ever have to worry about actually having to put anything away. You can just throw a nice table cloth over those babies and stick a few candle sticks on them and no one will be the wiser. Don't bother with appetizers because by the time company sits down to eat, they won't want to touch the holiday ham you spent hours cooking. Hide the wine because you know at least one of your husband's relatives cannot be held responsible for his actions after the third glass. Don't worry about dessert because most of these people need to go on a diet anyway and the sooner they leave, the sooner you can get back to what you do best anway, which is blogging! Here's the best news, you have more than six months to go before you have to worry about the next big holiday dinner.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Woman, Thy Name is Multi-Tasker

I don't often write "mom" type stuff in my blog, but I am a mom and a wife and a teacher and I have two home busiensses. Needless to say, I never actually have down time and I'm not quite sure what that is. I've been on the mommy track for the last 17 years and I can see that I won't be off it any time soon. Don't get me wrong, I love my life and have no complaints, but my life is so hectic some times, I just want to go back to bed and pull the covers over my head. Take today for instance, my husband called and said he had a last minute appointment with a potential new client. Since he was going to meet this guy at his house, he thought it would be nice to bring something for his wife and asked me if I could pick up some flowers some time today. I thought to myself, "What am I" I have no time to pick up flowers, dry cleaning, McDonald's or dog food. I still haven't finished the laundry and I have to plan my curriculum tomorrow for my four nursery school classes. I also have a dinner tonight which I am obligated to attend, my daughter has religion and my son is in a school concert. I guess I'll have to add logistics specialist to my long line of hats I wear. Someone pass the wine!

More About Hair

As a follow-up to yesterday's post on hair blowers, one reader commented that she purchased a professional grade hair blower for $170 a few years ago and it's still going strong. I'm glad she mentioned this because I had not touched on quality as an issue. This would hold true for any styling tool as well. Basically, you get what you pay for. If you purcahse a hair blower for under $20, then don't expect it to last too long. They are cheaply made and will burn out in a relatively short period of time. Do you have to spend $170 for a decent hair blower? No, there are good quality hair blowers that you can purchase that are well made and will last you over time. I use a Vidal Sasson Ionic Hair Blower and have had it for a couple of years. I've never had any problems with it. Of course, how you treat your hair blower will lengthen it's shelf life. When blowing out your hair, keep the blower at least six inches from your head. This will not only protect your hair, but the hair blower as well. Another poster asked if there were any way she herself could tame brassiness at home, without having to make a trip to the hair salon. If you are looking for an over-the-counter products to adjust color, I would recommend the John Frieda line of shampoos and conditioners developed for color-treated hair. If you are a blond and are experiencing brassiness from time to time, then stay away from the treatment for golden blond hair and stick with the platinum collection. You have to use these products over time in order to begin to see a difference so don't get discouraged if you don't see anything after the first use. Also, there are now at-home hair glazers available which work very well to tone down color at home, in between hair salon appointments. I have used the L'Oreal Gloss treatment which is fabulous, but now Nice and Easy has come out with a similar product. These are not permanent so if you try it and don't care for the effect, don't worry, it will wash out, but used over time, the gloss treament becomes more evident, leaving hair soft and well-conditioned afterwards. Finally, there are treatments you can do at home as well that don't cost very much at all. Every week do an oil conditioning. There's not need to heat the oil in order for it to condition your hair. Use olive oil if you have dark hair and sunflower oil if you have light hair. You can leave the oil in your hair for as long as you need to, but leave it in for at least twenty minutes, then shampoo and condition as usual. Again, thanks for the comments and questions!

That's What Friends Are For

I've made lots of friends through blogging and have found some of the nicest, most helpful people on the internet (yes, there are normal people on the internet, although some times they are few and far between, but not in the blogging world). From these wonderful people, I've gained knowledge about how to tweak my blog, find genuine income from blogging and how to generate traffic. One of the best tips I've ever gotten was about leaving comments on other blogs. By leaving a comment on another blog, you are not only supporting other bloggers' creations, but you are also leaving a calling card for your own blog. Since I enjoy reading other blogs, this is not a difficult thing for me to do. I've not only given some positive feedback to other bloggers, but I've gotten the same in return on many occasions. Of course, in the world of blogging, there's always a down side. Leaving a comment in an attempt to boost traffic to your own site, whether it's a blog or marketing website is not a good idea. The blog you've left your comment with can be flagged for spam if too many of these comments are only about advertising and not about blogging itself. Bloggers can protect themselves from spam comments by electing to either publish or reject a comment. Initially, when I set up my blog I didn't do this and I got so many comments from other posters who were just looking to advertise for themselves. Finally, I got wise and made the decision to deny them access to self-publish their comments. That's my job now and it's well worth it to get comments from bloggers who are interested in what I have to write about. If, in turn, they gains some readers for their own blogs, then good for them! Have a great day!

Monday, April 03, 2006

Sephora and Blow Dryers

A new month means new product features at If you are planning on ordering anything from Sephora, a couple of things to know is that you get free shipping on $75 or more on your purchase. Also, you can claim up to three free samples to be included in your order so be sure to click on 'free sample' before checking out so you can try some great new products. I just received a comment from someone asking if I had any tips about hair dryers or hair blowers. First of all, don't use one every day. You should only be washing your hair every third day or so. Over blowing means over drying and will lead to split ends galore. Also, use a leave-in conditioner when you blow dry your hair. I have mentioned John Frieda products previously and these are the products I use on my hair. The spray on, leave-in hair smoother is a no-weight product that leaves hair shiny and smooth when blown dry. I will only use a natural bristle brush when blow drying my hair since anything else is more likely to damage hair. Whatever kind of hair blower you are using, NEVER set it on the hottest setting. You will not only burn your hair, but your scalp can be burned also. The medium setting is the best and you can finish off with a cool shot if you have this feature on your blow dryer. I use an ionic hair blower which I find is less damaging to my hair over long-term use, but I've read mixed reviews about ionic products. If you want a natural, curly look to your hair, use a diffuser on your hair blower which may either come with the blower, but can certainly be purchased cheaply. This will leave the curl to be natural and not frizzy looking when hair is dry. Thanks for the question and the comment!

Monday, Monday

I just wanted to share a quick post this very busy rainy Monday. This is typical April weather, which I hope means, typical May weather which will bring sunny skies and lots of beautiful flowers. So how did I fight off the Monday morning gloom? I checked in with some good friends, gave myself plenty of time to get ready this morning and put on a bright, spring color and some bronzer to chase away the gray. Whatever you do today and whatever the weather conditions, have a great day and thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, April 02, 2006

When April Fools' Day Is No Laughing Matter

Yesterday was April 1st, otherwise known as April Fools' Day. This is the day you can expect someone to play a stupid, but otherwise harmless joke on you, but what happened to my husband was not at all funny and could have turned violent. He had his usual Saturday morning errands to do which includes a trip to the bank and then to our local bagel store for everyones' favorites. This is a treat my kids look forward to because they rarely have time to eat breakfast during the week. While my husband was opening up his car door to load up the car with bagels, coffee, etc., a couple pull in next to him in the parking lot and the driver (a male) starts screaming at my husband to "close the f...... door" so he can get out. He continued to scream at my husband so much so that crowd gathered to watch what would happen next. The man called my husband all sorts of names and dared him to come closer to him, which he did. Fortunately, my husband did not touch him, but made it clear that it would be very unwise of him to continue screaming at him in front of the gathered audience which also included this man's wife and young child. Thank goodness this guy finally backed down and I'm equally thankful that my husband didn't physically try to defend himself against someone who was clearly crazy and who could have been hiding a weapon. Needless to say, when he returned home he was very shaken, but otherwise okay. I asked him how come he didn't call the police since he had his cell phone on him, but in the moment I guess he was just not thinking clearly. Unfortunately, I had a similar experience in a parking lot last summer with a woman who felt that I was "in her way" so she began to verbally abuse me and she attempted to block my car in so I couldn't pull out of my parking spot. I did pull out my cell phone at the time and when she saw that she sped away. I don't know what happens to people when they get behind the wheel of a car that causes them to snap that way. Although I've never experienced that kind of rage while driving, I have gotten frustrated, but never enough to go after someone. I guess the moral of this story is to be very mindful of other drivers. You never know when a beautiful day can turn ugly.

.....And The Winner Is!

Super Woman Unmasked! She is the winner of the comment contest and she has a great blog! Go visit her and thanks to those who participated in my comment contest.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

More Blog Stuff

Thanks to those who have signed up for Blog Explosion from my blog. I also have button for Blog Advance and if you sign up from my site, you will automatically receive 50 credits just for signing up with them. I also want to highlight a blog from a blogging friend of mine This a wonderfully written and informative blog! Thanks again!

These Boots Were Made For Rockin' A Cradle

It was reported a few days ago that Jessica Simpson is now considering adoption. She wants to follow in the footsteps of Angelina Jolie and give some unfortunate kids a head start in life by giving them a home and buying them designer jeans. Apparently, Jessica and her PR rep., Rob Shuter, had a little pow-wow recently and the bottom line is her image sucks right now. She is the bitch that kicked her husband out of their Newlyweds home, while Nick has come off as the broken-hearted has been. But wait, he isn't the has been! He's been seen in several commercials, on several television shows, including 'Dancing With The Stars' supporting his little brother and he already has a reported very hot CD coming out shortly which is touted to be a success before it's release. Meanwhile, she can't get arrested and her Desserts skin care line hit the 50% off rack shortly after the announcement of their impending divorce. Since her image needs a boost, I guess she and Rob thought it would be a great idea if she adopted a kid, then everyone would love her again and she would be America's little sweetheart for opening her home to the United Nations. What some people would do for attention! By the way, my comment contest is still on and will be until midnight tonight. Leave me a comment on what's so great about Fridays and you may win a link to my blog. Thanks to everyone who has left me a link. Bloggers are the best!

Even Steven

Here's one skin care issue that I haven't talked about and that's uneven skin tone. This can be a problem for any woman at any age, but certainly after a certain age, uneven skin tone is much more noticeable. This could include blotchy skin (not due to Roseaca), dark spots and dull skin. One fairly new product that is easy to find is 'Visibly Even' from Neutrogena's Healthy Skin line. This daily, day-time moisturizer contains Essential Soy which helps brighten skin, reduce blotchiness and minimize the appearance of dark spots as well as Vitamin C which boosts radiance over time. There is also an SPF of 15 so this is the perfect day-time moisturizer for daily use. I paid unver $10 for this item in Ulta, but you can do a product search to see if it comes up cheaper elsewhere. I would try CVS or Walmart, which always comes up less expensive for beauty care. The only drawback I found is the fragrance, which is pleasant and subtle, but I always wonder why manufacturers find the need to put fragrance in a facial cream at all. It's totally unnecessary. So, if you suffer from lack-luster skin that needs a pick-me-up, try this product as well as the Pure Glow from Neutrogena. Both products together should cost you under $20. Happy Shopping!

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