Friday, January 31, 2014

Winner: Ginger's Wild Giveaway

We made it to Friday! After yesterday's incident, I'm so glad it's here last: 

Mr. Lovebird's back in town tonight after a week away on business, and I'm SO ready for this weekend!

Anyway, thank you to everyone who entered the Ginger's Wild giveaway - I'm so happy to support small businesses so if you or someone you know is interested in running a similar giveaway here on Harlem Lovebirds please email me at harlemlovebirds at gmail dot com.

Annnnnnd here's the winner:

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congrats Alisha! I'll be in touch for your contact info shortly.

 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Salt Lake City Edition #altsummit






 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Just a Few Tuesday Thoughts

I kind of decided I really like Tuesday because Monday makes me feel a little rusty coming off the weekend and Wednesday just makes me a bit disappointed that I'm only at the midpoint. Tuesday is like a mini-do-over of Monday, wouldn't you agree? You still have 3 days after that to get things right.

Here's what's on my mind this particular Tuesday: 


Recent research results on midwives - This week I switch from my traditional OB who no longer delivers babies to a midwife so this article just confirms me decision. Have any of my readers used a midwife? 

Excited for Blogalicious 2014 - See that button to the right? The location and dates were announced while I was at Alt SLC, and I snuck away during a break to get my $199 early bird ticket. Baby Agbai 2.0 will be nearly 5 months old when I attend, and I already am working on my speaker submission. I'm determined to speak this year!

{Image Credit}
Pharrell's Hat at the Grammy's - As usual Awesomely Luvvie sums up the hilarious comments from the interwebs here.

El Conquistador - the site of our wedding
Our upcoming trip to Puerto Rico in March - I am SO over this winter/vortex thing, and I'm excited to bring along a couple sponsored items when we head down there. More on that to come . . .

What's on your mind this Tuesday? I have so many thoughts on Alt Summit that I'm trying to organize into recap(s) (thank you for your patience!) so I'm off to work on that . . .

 

Monday, January 27, 2014

A Pre-Recap: Alt Summit SLC 2014






I have never experienced an event as life changing as these past 4 days at Alt Summit SLC. While I work on maybe doing it justice in a formal recap this Twitter exchange pretty much sums up my feelings about Alt:


Impatient to see more? Check out my Instagram (as well as #altsummit) and the official Alt Summit Flickr set.

 

P.S. Don't forget to enter my Alt inspired giveaway here!

Friday, January 24, 2014

I'm Not a Beyonce Fan, but I Get This About Her

Beyonce is someone I respect as a businesswomen, and while I don't consider myself a fan I've been watching her "Self-Titled" videos. As a fellow mom Pt. 4 was my "ah-ha" Beyonce moment. Have you watched it?


In the midst of her explaining her goal to prove that moms don't have to lose their sexy, I would've loved for her to acknowledge her ability to do what she does as a mom, artist, wife etc. because of her extensive staff/support. *That* really would've been the clincher, but for what it is, as someone in the spotlight I'm glad she mentioned breastfeeding, and I too believe one doesn't have to lose her sexy just because she becomes a mom. Now I will differ and say I don't need to prove my sexy so overtly and publicly and would never expose myself in that way - that's for my husband only! 

Oh and speaking of my husband, his thoughts on the subject (and I agree) is that this "liberation" is also tied to the younger pop-set (a la Miley and the like) being more daring sexually and Beyonce wanting to be relevant in that sexual arena especially as she ages.

Have you watched Beyonce's "Self-Titled" series? While some say they're manufactured/PR projects, I like them. Do you?

 

An Alt Summit Inspired Giveaway: Ginger's Wild

Disclosure: I received a sample pack of Ginger's Wild soap to facilitate this review; all opinions expressed are my own.

In honor of Alt Summit and all things DIY and handmade when a friend of mine introduced me to Ginger's Wild I was thrilled to share the beautifully, handmade soaps with my readers. I'm a soap-a-holic, meaning while I like a good body wash, nothing beats using a bar of soap - especially one that smells divine.


"I like to think that every scent has a bit of my personally in it.  My soap is fragrant and fun!  I want people to get excited about bathing!  I only use sustainable oils and the high quality fragrance oils and essential oils and do not use any harsh detergents in any of my products.”
 
Ginger - a self-proclaimed product junkie - created her company in a sudden burst of late-night inspiration waking up suddenly and declaring, "I want to make soap!" While she enlists the help of her fiancé as her tester, Ginger looks forward to being able to go full time with her business.


Ginger's Wild most popular scent Lemongrass is a bright, crisp aroma that will convert even the most resistant morning person. In the sample pack Ginger shared with me I was immediately drawn to the cucumber melon which reminded me of a summer spa day - perfect for using especially during the polar vortex we just experienced in NYC. When I unwrapped the soap it felt creamy with a butter-like texture and I knew my skin was in for a treat! It definitely isn't the drugstore soap I grew up with.

Love the delicate packaging!
From Wakey, Wakey to Salted Coconuts you can find all of Ginger's Wild's scents in her Etsy shop in both bars and soap loafs - which can be cut into your own individual bars as needed. I had never heard of a "soap loaf" before until Ginger explained it to me - here's an example:

 
Ginger is giving one of my reader's a custom Lemongrass soap loaf (valued at $35) topped with gold-colored mica powder, which is safe on skin and provides a beautiful shimmer to the soap.

To enter just use the Rafflecopter form below. The giveaway ends Thursday, January 30 with the winner announced on January 31. Open to U.S. residents only. Good luck and happy lathering!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

What's Behind This Blogger's Closed Doors?

In line with last week's reality TV/blogging post I saw Weather Anchor Mama's recent post on bloggers revealing what's really behind their closed doors - mess and all. It was like a breath of fresh air! 

With mompetition and general competition within the realm of social media, I agree with what I've heard time and time again at blogging conferences (and will probably hear at Alt Summit SLC - where I'm headed to now!)

It's better to be perfectly imperfect!

So in that same vein I'm sharing with you the state of our apartment right after I finished reading Weather Anchor Mama's post - I grabbed my camera and didn't edit a thing before shooting:




So that's life!

Would you be ashamed to share what's behind your closed doors? If you end up doing it please come back and post the link in the comments below.

 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

A MLK Family Weekend

It's been an unwritten tradition the past couple years that we get to see my parents (last year we went to MD), and this year my mom came up to see us (my dad had to work, but we'll see him in April!). As always by the end of a weekend I've planned my poor mom needs a massage and a foot soak, but she assured me it was well worth it. I think the pictures will make you agree:

Nana arrived bearing a special gift: handmade PJs, perfect for Nia's sick day (she's better now!)
Our first time being first in line at our favorite brunch spot Clinton Street Baking Company so we had to document it (and Mr. Lovebird quite festively!); we got there 30 minutes before opening otherwise would've face a nearly 2 hour wait!

Sunday I ran to pick up these free books from a fellow mom part of my local meet-up group; it's such a resource! I've read Ina May's book before but not the others
Annnnd more brunch on Sunday with my BFF and another West coast friend right before he had to fly back (and I had to go run more Alt related errands!)
Jewelry shopping with my sister who introduced me to this spot; turns out they have one in Jersey City too!

Loving my twist out by Blow-Out (I blogged about the salon here)
It was a domino effect of the family waking up to admire the sunrise yesterday morning - our view never gets old!
Nana joined us for a bouncy play date yesterday morning
Putting Alt SLC outfits together & attempting to pack; my seamstress mommy helped immensely!
Previewing my outfits for Alt (I'll also wear the statement necklace on the right with the outfit on the left along with matching earrings)
A cab selfie before my mommy went home
We let Lil Lovebird stay up late to watch part of this special with us on Bounce; I ended up in tears, and she hugged me so tightly. Love her!
Talenti and Downton: how I decompress
How was your long weekend? Relaxing or taxing?


 

Monday, January 20, 2014

With Equality in Mind

Last year we spent Martin Luther King, Jr. Day at the memorial in D.C. - you can see our visit here

This year we're having a quiet day mostly at home, but I came across this movie trailer that I'm excited to share:
 

Similar to The Butler and 12 Years a Slave (I share my thoughts on those movies here), Belle is a piece of history I had never heard of until now. As a history nerd I really appreciate this trend in films lately. Expect Belle in theaters May 2014.

Have you heard of this film? Do you have any other similar period pieces to recommend? 
 
 

Friday, January 17, 2014

When There's a "Surprise" in Your Food

Warning: yucky stuff ahead! If you have a sensitive stomach go to this site instead.
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So my friend posted this on Facebook recently: 
 

The week before I saw this from my sister Ariane:



Then my sister mentioned, "Oh mom has a good story too!" so of course I had to ask her about it . . .

Growing up in Columbus, Ohio my mom had a favorite fried chicken joint and at some point in the 80s/90s she went and ordered her chicken. It came out nice and crispy and she could see it was well seasoned. Well upon further examination there was a dead fly stuck to the outside of the chicken. Too bad there were no smartphones back them to snap pictures! My mom postulates that the fly got stuck there after coming out the hot oil and died instantly then adhered to the chicken. EWWWWW!

The recent sharing of all this nastiness brought to mind a traumatizing food incident that happened when I was a child . . .

{Image Credit}
Back when I was a kid in Columbus there was a local news story about people who had been finding bugs in their candy bars. I may have between 8-10 years old, and I remember seeing the news story. This still didn't deter me from my obsession with candy bars (Symphony, Whatchamacallit and Mr. Goodbars were my favorite!). I remember I asked my mom for one and she reminded me of the news story, and I said it didn't matter. Well . . . I got home, took a bite and my candy bar appeared to be ALIVE! It was teeming with maggots. We bagged it up and reported it to the local news. The maggots then hatched into flies after a couple days. I still can't eat a Mr. Goodbar to this day, but I still like candy bars!

After sharing the apple picture with my sister we had this exchange in which I offered (IMHO) a brilliant solution:


Have you ever found a "surprise" in your food?

 

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