Thursday, March 31, 2011

Traveling With Pomegranates

I've had a hard time waiting to finish reading this book so I could Blog about it! I loved it! And there is so much of it I wanted to share! It really needs an entire Book Club discussion for all the gems hidden in this wonderful little book! (Hopefully someday that will happen too!)

It's Traveling with Pomegranates By the Mother/Daughter team of Sue Monk Kidd (who also wrote The Secret Life Of Bees, another book you know I love!) & Ann Kidd Taylor (this is her first book) Sue is about to turn 50, Ann is graduating from College. Both are at pivotal moments in their lives. They travel together through Greece & France, in search of where their new lives will lead them. For one it's letting go of her younger self & coming to terms with her grown daughter & how that might change their relationship. For the other it's finding her path in life & facing adulthood. And for both it's about reconnecting with each other. It's beautifully written from both perspectives.

It also gives light as to why Sue decided to try her hand at writing fiction for the first time & how The Secret Lives Of Bees came to be written. They search for the feminine side of God & search out places in Europe that hold answers about Mary, and Greek Mythology. The Mother/Daughter story of Demeter & Persephone is paramount to the story of Sue & Ann. (It also gives meaning to why Pomegranates are important!) As a Mother (not all that far from the big 5-0, don't tell anyone) with daughters who have just become teenagers, you can see why I clung to much of what I read here. And of course I had to throw in a picture of me & my daughters, in one of our favorite places doing one of our favorite things! :)

And let me share with you some of what I loved in this book:

"I suspect like most mothers and daughters we've participated in the classic struggle: the mother, trying to let her daughter go while unconsciously seeing her as an appendage of herself. And the daughter, enmeshed in her mother's power, compelled to please her and pattern herself in her mother's image, but straining at the same time to craft an identity separate form her."

"What is the conversation that needs to go on inside of a woman at this juncture in her life?" "I know I'm here to enter that very conversation. To face irrevocable truths and grieve a little . . . or perhaps a lot. Then start to let go."

"I realize I'm still trying to work out the boundaries. How to love her without interfering. How to step back and let her have her private world and yet still be an intimate part of it. Every woman needs to become self mothering, I remind myself. To learn to take care of herself, to love herself."

"Knowing what I would like to be free of: the part of me that dares too little and fears too much."

"I'm filled with love for my mother. The best gift she has given me is the constancy of her belief. Whatever I become, she loves me. To her I am enough."

Thursday, March 24, 2011

On The Floor

Welcome to the store:

I was hired at Bath & Body works to be the Manager in charge of floor sets. What that means for you non retail people is that a couple times each month after the store is closed we come in & reset the sales floor. That is, to rearrange the way the floor looks, move things around, put out new product, even decorate for the season. It's a lot of work, but also a lot of fun! I'd thought I'd give you a closer look at this aspect of my job:

Ashley showing what our store looked like for Valentines Day!

Laura at the Cash Wrap

Our side window

Liz, putting together the new hanging flowers!
A lot of work goes into these floor sets, even ahead of time!

The Balloons have to come down before the flowers can go up!
That's Laura who "hearts" Bath & Body Works! :)

The store Manager Cindy, going over with Allysha
how this table should look.

Sara, getting new product out!

Alisha setting her table . . .

That will end up looking like this!

Allysha moving things around!
I think those bags weigh more than she does!

Amanda is the Queen of the front windows!
She always makes them look so inviting!

See for yourself . . .

The "after" of our side window.

Cindy & Laura working on hanging the new Cash wrap mural!
"Look out below!"

Brittany & Lori getting the flowers ready to be hung.

The sink becomes one of many catchalls!
Love the sign: Spread Love, not Germs! :)

And when something gets broke, you know it's Victorya!
Even when she's not working, we all blame her now!

Lisa, mopping up.
Always willing to do whatever needs to be done!

Me getting cheeky, while reorganizing the Lip table!

I bring snacks in for the girls while we work. And sometimes were there pretty late! But the store always looks great! See for yourself our finished product:

Ready for spring!

Looking good, if I do say so myself! (and I do!)

And just think, in a couple of weeks, we'll change it all again!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Girls In Curls!!

When my girls were little their hair was so stinking cute! With their little curly tops, people always stopped us to say how cute they were and that they looked like Shirley Temple . . .

But as they got older, it started getting thicker, courser & curlier! But, still it was manageable . . .

From the time they started Kindergarten they would make comments like "I want straightened hair like so&so!" It makes me think of the scene in My Big Fat Greek Wedding when the little Greek girl brings her traditional lunch to school & says she just wanted to have a Wonder Bread sandwich like all the blond girls!

It's true I guess that we all want what we don't have. People tell my girls all the time "I paid big bucks to get that kind of curl!" But It's little constellation when your so frustrated trying to care for it!

We've had to pay full adult Haircut prices for them since they were about the age of 10 due to the amount of hair they have. And I don't know how to take care of it either, my hair isn't near as curly & it is MUCH thinner! I've even wondered if a Jeri Curl would work on white girls hair! :)

They almost ALWAYS wear it pulled back in a pony tail or in braids. It's just easier for them then walking around with a bush on their head!

I remember being a teenager & complaining about my hair & my mom telling she'd give anything to have my hair. I just want them to love who they are! And that includes these heads of hair they've been given. But I'd almost given up hope it could happen.

Then last week we were in Target, looking at what else: Hair Care products, and another lady who was shopping commented on their hair & started telling us that her daughter (who is a twin as well) has a friend with hair just like my girls' & goes to this salon in down town Gilbert (where we live) that specializes in curly hair. I had John look it up on his iPhone right then & there & get the number. I thanked the lady & told her she may have been a God send for us!

It's called Curls Gone Wild! Love the name! I looked at their website, click here to see it. I called to make appointments and the girl on the phone told me how glad she was we had found them while the girls are still young, so they can start now knowing how to take care of & yes, even LOVE their curls!

The girls started talking about what it might be like to be able to actually wear their hair down. Erica said "hopefully my hair can go from being a Lion to being a kitty cat!" :) We started getting excited. I was afraid we be disappointed.

Today was the day! The website tells you the first appointment will take an hour and a half & they will teach you how to care for your curls. The girls are on spring break this week so it was perfect timing!

They taught us how to cleans (& not shampoo!) their hair. To moisturize it, which is the key. And the do's & dont's of styling it! And every chance they got they threw in how wonderful (not burdensome) curly hair is! And how lucky & blessed the girls are to have it. :)

Melanie (in the black & white) is the owner of the salon & has children with hair just like my girls, and had to learn how to take care of it. And wanted to share that knowledge with others, so Curls Gone Wild was born. And I for one am glad it was!

They cut curly hair entirely differently than straight hair. And I love that they really took the time to talk to my girls & to me. We were there for just about two hours, but the time really flew by!

They didn't bat an eye at how much hair my girls have. Trust me other salons have. And then let me know they have to charge us extra because of it. (Can you tell this has become a sore spot in our lives?!) Well hopefully not any more!

And when all was said & done, the girls looked very different from how they walked in there, and as you can see, not much hair had been cut off, but where's the frizz?! We wont miss it!

Thank you Priscilla & Melanie for all your help today! We will be back!

They also gave the girls a website to check out, full of tips on how to continue to care for their hair. It's

Lexi before & after:

Erica before & after:

Curls Gone Wild!