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Susan's Spa

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

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Too Sensitive?

By now you've already heard about the Rachel Ray scarf scandal with Dunkin Donuts. The ad featuring her dressed in a scarf, drinking an iced latte has been pulled from the brand's website so as not to offend those who may believe that Rachel is sympathizing with terrorists. Apparently, those people don't realize that the scarf is merely a fashion statement and nothing more. So did Dunkin Donuts do the right thing by pulling the ad or are we just too sensitive about such things? Perhaps we need to focus on more important things and stop nitpicking at every little nuance that may or may not suggest something sinister. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar and, in this case, a scarf is just a scarf.

Friday, May 30, 2008


It's been a while since I've blogged about anything blog related and since my blog description includes blogging tips, then here's a really good one to get your blog noticed; register with SocialSpark. Honestly, when I first heard about Social Spark, I thought it was going to be a dating website. Since I'm a married woman, this is the last place I need to be looking, but it turns out that SocialSpark is actually a website where bloggers get noticed by advertisers. I would like to think that the folks who came up with this idea actually borrowed it from some of the more popular sites. With SocialSpark, you register (for free) and create a profile that includes some personal information about yourself, but it is mainly about your blog to help advertisers choose blogs that meet their needs. Of course, I went ahead and created my own profile which only took me about ten minutes to complete. My only disappointment with the process was that for some reason, the photo I uploaded didn't show up in my profile and I'm not sure how to access it. I guess I'll have to play with it for a while before I can figure that out. I also grabbed the claim code, but I'm not sure I did that correctly either. In any event, even with these few minor pitfalls, this is a great idea for bloggers who want to get their blogs noticed. It's far more practical than some of the blog surfing sites that help bloggers get noticed. Since this is a new site, it would be a great idea to get registered as soon as possible. It doesn't cost anything, which is a big plus. You'll also get a chance to see whose been visiting your blog by checking your profile. People can also get a chance to leave comments for you so it's also a great way to network with other bloggers as well. This post is sponsored by Pay Per Post.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Quantum Wellness

When I first heard Oprah was going to attempt a 21 day detox diet, I felt compelled to feel very smug. To me, this was just another one of her attempts to lose some weight in a hurry for summer. I also thought it was ridiculous that anyone could live on a plant-based diet for 21 days without climbing the walls; I've changed my mind. So what changed for me? I was channel surfing the other day and caught author, Kathy Freston, on Ellen's talk show. Kathy is the creator and author of "Quantum Wellness". I expected to hear some flaky nonsense about how we all must be one with the earth, but she was about as down to earth as my next-door neighbor. In fact, she herself admitted that it took a very long time to make the change over to a completely plant-based diet and it happened in very small steps. I was so impressed with what she had to say that she inspired me to carefully choose my own food choices throughout the day. I find myself now choosing a piece of fruit or some fresh veggies over chocolate chip cookies. I not only feel healthier, but more empowered. Kathy's best-selling book, is available at all book stores now.

Where Sitcom Meets Reality

It is no surprise that more and more reality television shows are popping up. They have replaced traditional sitcoms, but is the reality television show of today really reality? Years ago, MTV first introduced reality television to viewers with its "Real World" series and this was basically raw television with little editing. Fast forward years later and the reality television show of today is polished and complete with story line as well as somewhat scripted as evidenced by "Keeping Up With The Kardishians", a reality television show produced by Ryan Seacrest. Seacrest is fast becoming the reality television mogul with this hit television show, so much so, that he is producing two more; one which just debuted with Denise Richards entitled "It's Complicated" and another one to be produced for NBC entitled "Mama's Boy", where a single man's mother will choose her son's mate. Nevertheless, these predictable reality shows, many of which can be seen on "E", have become very popular, although rather predictable. They cannot however, rival Bravo's reality television line-up which includes, the very popular, "Top Chef", "Project Runway" and the Housewives series.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Something Different For Father's Day

Maybe you've completely run out of ideas as to what to get your significant other, boyfriend, dad or brother for Father's Day. This is a particularly great website if you have a loved one who is working for law enforcement and you can get great things from outerwear to storage bags and even a tactical holster. You can also get great footwear and eyewear, all at great prices and shipping services. This post is sponsored by Pay Per Post.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Spiritual Awareness Or Quick Fix Diet?

Recently, Oprah and three people she works with from Harpo, decided to embark on a 21 day detox plan. Her reasoning for following this strict vegan regimen which allows no caffeine, animal products, sugar, gluten, or anything else that tastes good, is to help her reach a more spiritual level of conscience with regard to her food choices. She says that it is not enough to just be aware of the amount of food she is eating, her choices or reasoning for eating (she admits to being an emotional eater, but who isn't?), but this strict detox diet will surely bring about enormous weight loss. Having said that, one has to wonder as to her public reasoning given the fact that she has gained a great deal of weight recently. In her defense, she is not unlike many other people, including myself, who have used food as a coping skill and she has been very generous in sharing her strong desire to be thinner. She even went on a very dangerous liquid diet that could have potentially caused permanent harm. Of course, eating healthier would include a diet rich in fruits in vegetables, but even strict vegans don't always eat healthy. I suppose we will all have to wait and see how this all turns out, but even if her loyal fans wanted to follow along, they would be hard pressed. One would need a personal chef (like the one Oprah is now using) to prepare these gourmet vegan meals and who can afford that? If you at all curious as to how she's doing, you can read all about it on her blog at herwebsite.

Shopping The Globe Right From Home

I'm a huge shopper and the internet has opened up a whole new shopping experience for me over the years. I can do much of my shopping right from my own home. In the beginning, it was a matter of convenience. Now, with the price of gasoline, it is an economic necessity to try and conserve gas, while getting the most for my shopping dollar. I am still saving money by shopping this way, even with the shipping costs. More importantly, I try to use websites that not only offer great deals, but utilize customer reviews and comparison pricing. This much needed information helps me make good choices. I also try to find websites that offer a wide variety of products from jewelry to furniture. This way if I find a website that has great deals and great service, I can utilize them for all my shopping needs from household items to holiday shopping. I love a website that I can utilize all year long whether I am shopping for Christmas or looking for garden products for some Summer fun! I also love that I can purchase items for myself, like lingerie and still be able to get a great deal on a computer for my family from the very same website. Happy shopping!! This post is sponsored by Pay Per Post.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Clothes Encounters Of The Carrie Kind

Hold onto your couture hats people; here comes "Sex and the City", the movie. It may not be everything you imagined in story, but as far as the fashion is concerned, this movie will leave you with severe clothes envy. Fashion diva, Patricia Field, reached into the far corners of the fashion world to retrieve clothes that only these ladies could truly get away with. If you've ever envied Sara Jessica Parker's trendy looks, then you won't be at all disappointed by her wardrobe. So how will this resonate in the retail world? It already has had an impact as clothing manufacturers scramble to achieve the same look for ready-to-wear lines available to the general buying public. If for no other reason, go see this movie to be dazzled by the wardrobe and it may make you forget the story line altogether.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Global Chic

It's hard to believe that Iman is the same age as I am. Looking at her, it appears that this woman has never aged a bit since she began modeling many years ago, back in the seventies. This woman is not only incredibly beautiful, but smart as well. She has never been out of the spotlight very long, even after her modeling career ended. She has been married to singer, David Bowie, for many years and together they are raising their eight year old daughter. She also has a grown daughter from a previous marriage. Iman has developed skin care and cosmetic products for women of color for a few years now and has recently embarked on another career, bringing her fashion sense in clothing, jewelry and accessories to HSN. She has drawn on her travels around the globe to bring together a unique, but affordable collection to Home Shopping, which has been trying to change their image by appealing to a younger and more chic viewer.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Hate To Fly? Why Not Drive

I hate to fly! In fact as I've gotten older, I've become more fearful of traveling by air. It's not just the obvious risk factors, but the long lines and delays are unpredictable. Also, now that gas is over $4.00 a gallon, air fares have sky rocketed, leaving middle class families wondering how they will arrive at their vacation destination. There's a very simple answer; rent a car. Renting a car is not only practical, but it can save you money if you rent a vehicle that gets better gas mileage than your own. Getting a car rental is so easy! You can rent your vehicle online and also, get great discounts by doing so. Just because you may not like to fly, or you can't afford the air fare, doesn't mean you shouldn't have a great vacation. Just rent a car and drive there and when you're done, you can return the car easily, saving wear and tear on your own vehicle. It's also a great way to travel if you have kids. You can easily rent any size car you need from a compact to a van and travel in comfort.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Pick A Prom Dress!

Last year, Newsday, Long Island's premiere daily newspaper, began a pick-a-prom-dress contest which became very popular with readers who were able to impact the outcome of one young lady's choice of prom dresses. Narrowed down to three this year (just like last year), this year's young lady, Amanda, had the great privilege of having last season's "Project Runway" finalist, Jillian Lewis, of Selden, Long Island, come up with all of those three designs. Now you can pick your favorite and the one with the most votes will be the one Amanda will wear to her prom. To be honest, all three designs are somewhat similar in design, but each has a different flair. If you would like to cast your own vote, you can do so here.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

She Said, She Said

By now you must know that Barbara Walters has just released her very candid memoirs entitled "Audition". She has made the rounds of all the entertainment shows and a few talk shows, including Oprah Winfrey. Barbara was very forthcoming about her life as a child, her mentally disabled older sister, Jackie, her marriages and even her affair with a married senator. Of course, Barbara dished about "The View" including her relationship with Rosie O'Donnell and with Star Jones. It is no secret now that Star finally admitted to gastric by-pass surgery, but now Star is furious with Barbara for spilling all of her beans, including her deals to have a completely comped wedding and the real story behind her quick departure. Although Star is banking on the sympathy vote now, with the cancellation of her TruTV show and her impending divorce, don't feel too bad; the same week the announcement of her divorce was made so was the news that she would be hosting Oxygen's "Bad Girls" reality show.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Mom Of The Year????

Since Mother's Day is tomorrow, I thought it only appropriate to blog about being a mom and other mom related news. Years, I ago, when my now 19 year old son was five months old, I joined a wonderful organization called The Mother's Center. This was a real grass-roots organization that was developed to find out how moms coped with the pregnancy and birthing process. It later branched out, by popular demand, to include other relevant topics for moms, like surviving toddlerhood, finding time for ourselves and, in my case, going through the adoption process. At some point a new moms group was developed called Mingling Moms. This is the light version of our group, which really only included a social event...lunch with the kids. This group kind of stole our thunder because they were getting a lot of publicity. We even tried to reach out to them, but they weren't interested. I wouldn't knock them...until now. Apparently, Mingling moms thinks it's a really great idea to honor celebrity moms or moms of celebrities. They've given Mom of the Year Awards to the likes of Dina Lohan, a mom of a celebrity who is now a celebrity in her own right, as well as, Jennifer Lopez, who has been a mom for about five minutes. This nice little publicity stunt has landed them some very nice PR on primetime news and entertainment news shows. Nice move on their part, but do these moms really deserve a Mom of the Year award? Not to be judgmental (that wouldn't fit the Mother's Center philosophy), but how about honoring some really important moms who have survived the illness of their own or, worse yet, their child's illness. How about single moms who hold families together or moms who not only parent their own children, but now have to parent their aging parents? It's nice to honor moms because we all deserve a pat on the back, but do it for the right reasons and not to just garner some publicity. Happy Mother's Day!!

Friday, May 09, 2008

Renuzit TriScents Making Dreams Come True

Remember when I previously blogged about Renuzit TriScents? This is a new product from Renuzit that blends a trio of scents together to give your home a fragrance makeover in minutes. Renuzit is so excited about their new product, that they are offering a $20,000 home makeover with Tanya Memme, the host of the Emmy nominated A&E show, "Sell This House" in the "Transform Your Home With Tanya Memme" promotion. Well the contest is down to the semi-finalists, and can be viewed in the semi-finalist gallery. After you have viewed all the semi-finalist's submissions, you can vote for your favorite. I picked my favorite semi-finalist from all the video submissions and you can view the submission here at TriScents Gallery. So why was this one my favorite? I guess because I could totally relate to this family who creatively showed how Renuzit TriScents could be used in all areas of the home. I particularly related to the back-door scene. I have a new puppy and she is being paper-trained right at our back door so this is a great place for me to put Renuzit TriScents. I loved the before and after make-overs of their bathroom. That alone inspires me to get Renuzit TriScents and make over my own family bathroom. Another great tip from them is placing Renuzit TriScents in the kid's rooms. I have two kids of my own who could definitely use Renuzit TriScents, especially my son who could use Renuzit TriScents in his dorm room. You can vote for your favorite semi-finalist once a day until June 7, by visiting the semi-finalist gallery. By doing so, you will be making one family's dream come true with a $20,000 home makeover with Tanya Memme. Who knows, maybe with Renuzit TriScents, you too will be inspired to begin your own home makeover.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Lindsay Gets Ugly

Lindsay Lohan will be guest starring in six episodes of "Ugly Betty". She will play an old schoolmate of Betty's who is down and out on her luck. Maybe this is a case of art imitating life. It will be interesting to see if she will receive the same warm reception as Britney Spears who guest appeared on "How I Met Your Mom". Britney was so popular, she will make a return appearance!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

In A New York Minute

If you put absolutely no effort whatsoever into personal relationships and everything into your image and career, then you are bound to marry some guy you just started dating five minutes ago on some tropical island. Will it last? Who knows...stranger things have happened, but I really don't hold out much hope. Maybe the thought of turning 40 and still being all alone was just too frightening or maybe it was the tropical heat. Whatever it was, it holds our attention for as long as the dating lasted, which is about a New York minute.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

The Art Of Saying Thanks

There's nothing more gracious than saying thanks to someone. The time that it takes to choose a special card and write a personal note goes a very long way in cementing long-term relationships with friend, loved ones and business associates. There are many ways to say thanks and your special card should reflect your own personality like the card I've chosen here. In this day and age of internet exchange, there's something very magical about receiving a thank you card in the mail, hand written by a friend or loved one. People often associate thank you cards with weddings, but thank you cards are perfect for just about any occasion or just when you believe someone in your life deserves a thanks. As a real estate agent, I often write personal thank you notes just because someone took the time to meet with me, even if they don't sign with me. In the future, they will remember that I took the time to think of them and that can make all the difference between getting a listing or not. In my personal life, I often thank my children's teachers for their hard work. I have found that it is much more effective than buying a gift that might go unused. I have also used thank you cards whenever a friend has given me a shoulder to cry on or just lent an ear. Also, children are never too young to learn how to write thank you cards. A simple note that is personalized with the person's name and that special gift is all it takes to say thanks. Thank you Cards are also a great way to cement a budding relationship. If you had a great first date with a special someone, send them a thank you card letting them know what a great time you had and how much you would love to get the chance to return the favor. It not only shows you have great manners, but also is a good way to get that second date. If you had a great job interview and want to leave a lasting impression, then definitely send a personal thank you letting a prospective employer know that you enjoyed meeting them and that you are definitely interested in the job! That one act of thoughtfulness can end up changing your life. If you really are at a loss for words when you write out your thank you card, don't over-think it. Sometimes just saying "thanks" is enough to get across your appreciation.

The Envelope Please

Mother's Day is literally just around the corner and if you are in a quandry about what to buy mom, or you just don't have the time to shop, then check out Red Envelope. This lovely online shopping site has wonderful and unique gifts for every price point. You can actually purchase something very indulgent for your mom and still have money left over for yourself. Not only that, but the gifts are lovingly packaged and shipped promptly. Red Envelope often has special sales for their customers and you will always be notified well ahead of time so you can do your gift shopping in a timely manner while still saving money.

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