Beauty Buys for Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Hello my lovelies! It’s that time of year. The time when people’s attitudes get sweeter, if only for a little while, and our pockets get thinner so that we can put a smile on a loved ones face. The time to celebrate family and friends, get nice and plump and wake up the next morning to do it all over again! After Black Friday shopping of course!

I’ve never been a big Black Friday shopper. I prefer to do all of my shopping online. However, this year you will probably find me in Macy’s or JC Penny getting a couple of items for the home while they are deeply discounted. But on friday morning I will also be stalking stores online. Cosmetic stores as a matter of fact. Below you will find a list of my favorite beauty brands and the discounts they will have. You’re welcome.

AVALON ORGANICS: 20% off with code AVALONTHANKS, 11/29-12/2.
BLISS: 20% off all full-size bliss, Elemis, Remede products, 11/29 through 12/2.
BUTTER LONDON: 20% off site wide (excluding product marked at “last-call”) and 50% off “last-call” items with code CYBER13, 11/29 through 12/2.
CARGO: 50% off Let’s Meet in Paris Mini Lip Gloss Kits, 11/29 at ULTA stores and online.
DESERT ESSENCE: 25% off all orders with code CYBER, 11/29 through 12/2.
DR. BRANDT SKINCARE: 40% off entire purchase, 11/29.
GIORGIO ARMANI: 20% off $75+ purchases, now through 12/5.
H20 PLUS: $25 off $100 purchase, 11/29 only.
KATE SOMERVILLE: Friends & Family Sale — 30% off with code HOLIDAY2013, 11/25 through 12/2.
MACY’S: Special sets from brands like Estee Lauder, Clinique, Smashbox, Origins, bareMinerals, 11/29.
MAKE UP FOR EVER: Purchase two full-sized Aqua Shadows (either 20E and 28E / 2E and 30E) for $10 at Sephora, 11/29 through 12/1 (while supplies last).
MISS JESSIE’S: 40% off + free shipping, now through 12/3.
MIYU BEAUTY: 25% off with code BFCMMIYU5, 11/29 through 12/2.
OPI: The special four-piece polish set Cheers to the Holidays will only be $8 on Black Friday at Ulta stores.
OUIDAD: 20% off site wide with code FFCURL20, 11/27 through 12/4. Spend $60+ and get 25% off with code FFCURL25, 11/27 through 12/4.
Pearl: Pearl Ionic Teeth Whitening System is 40 percent off on Black Friday.
PETER THOMAS ROTH: 20% off sitewite, 11/29 only.
SEPHORA: $10 deals beginning 11/29. See the list below.
SHU UEMURA: 20% + free shipping on $50+ purchases with code WISH2013, 11/29 through 12/2.
SMASHBOX: 25% off everything with $50+ purchase with code HOLIDAY25, ends 12/2.
URBAN DECAY: Get a 6-piece bundle of Revolution Lipstick for only $50 (a $132 value). Set includes the following shades: Jilted, F-Bomb, Catfight, Naked, Native and Protest. Get travel sizes of All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray, Supercurl Mascara and Eyeshadow Primer Potion, as well as the Black Market 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil Set, for $35 (a $72 value.
VAPOUR BEAUTY: 30% off with code BLACKFRIDAY13, 11/27 through 12/2.
VICHY: Get $15 off $60 purchase with code FRIDAY15, get $25 off $90 purchase with code FRIDAY25, get $35 off $125+ purchase with code FRIDAY35, 11/25 through 11/30.
WELEDA: 25% off all products with code FRIDAY, 12/2 only.
YSL: 20% off $75+ orders, now through 12/2.

Cyber Monday Sales:
AMALA BEAUTY: 20% off $150+ purchases with code MONDAY2013, 12/2 through 12/3.
COLORSCIENCE: Buy $75 and get $10 off with code THANKS10, buy $100 and get $15 off with code THANKS15, and buy $150 get $20 off with code THANKS20, 12/2 only.
DR. BRANDT SKINCARE: 40% off eye creams, 12/1 at noon EST through 12/2 midnight EST.
FIRST AID BEAUTY: 30% off purchases + free shipping on all orders, 12/2 only.
GOOD HOME CO.: 30% off with code CYBER13, 12/2.
JACK BLACK: Exclusive holiday gift sets – up to 72% off + free shipping, 12/2 only.
LAURA GELLER: 20% off sitewide + free shipping, 12/2.
LISA HOFFMAN: 50% off with code LHCYBER, 12/2 only. $100+ purchase receives 4 vial pulse-point perfume set.
MYCHELLE: 50% off with code CYBER13, 12/2 only.
PAULA’S CHOICE: 15% off, 12/2 only.
SJAL: 10% off $100+ orders, 20% off $200+ orders, 25% off $300+ orders, 12/2 through 12/3.
STRIVECTIN: 25% off $200+ purchases with code CMJINGLE25, 12/2.
URBAN DECAY: Get the Smoked Palette and an Eyeshadow Primer Potion Travel Duo for $40 (a $58 value). Get the 2011 Urban Decay Book of Shadows Vol. IV with a deluxe Revolution Lipstick sample for $25.
VICHY: 25% with code CYBER13, 12/1 through 12/3.
WELEDA: 25% off all products with code MONDAY, 12/2 only.

Sephora $10 Deals:
Alterna Caviar Moisture Trio (miniature sizes)
BareMinerals Enchanting Eyes (Eyeshadow Duo and Miniature-sized Prime Time)
Bite Lush Lip Trio (miniature sizes)
Bliss Soapy Suds Body Wash + Bubble Bath (16 oz., available in four scents)
Boscia Pore Perfection Set (miniature sizes)
Buxom Curtain Call Set (Mascara + Full-On Lipstick)
Buxom Havana Full-On Lipstick
Clean Rollerball Set (miniature sizes)
Formula X Asap Real Nail Lacquer Duo Pack
Josie Maran Argan Hand Healers Set (miniature sizes)
Kate Somerville Dermal Quench Liquid Lift Treatment (miniature size)
Lavanila The Healthy Deodorant in Vanilla Grapefruit (miniature size)
Living Proof The Full Collection (miniature sizes)
LORAC Fan Favorite (Eyeshadow and Eyeliner)
Nails Inc. Crystaltastic Nails
Ole Henriksen Clean Sweep Duo (miniature sizes)
Philosophy Purity Made Simple (12 fl. oz.)
Sephora Collection Sparklers Brush Set
Stila Artful Eye Collector’s Palette (available in three varieties)
Stila Collage of Color Lip & Cheek Palette
Tarte Little Miracles Best Selling Essentials (miniature sizes)
The Art of Shaving The 4 Elements of the Perfect Shave Set (miniature sizes)
Tocca Florence Travel Fragrance Duo
Too Faced Better Than Sex Amazing Eyes Set (miniature sizes)
Vita Liberata Rich Face + Mini Mitt Duo (miniature sizes)
Wei Pore Purifying & Brightening Collection (miniature sizes)

Happy shopping!


My daughter is a princess…and you will deal!

Lately it seems I have been inundated with articles speaking on why our daughters shouldn’t strive to be princesses and everything that’s wrong with calling our daughter a princess. Well, my daughter is a princess and if you don’t like it, the great news is that you don’t have to!

I’m sorry, but did I miss the memo that this is the 50s and women are struggling to have a voice in society? Because honestly, I don’t see what’s wrong with being a princess. If the worse my daughter can do is strive to buy her own restaurant, get turned into a frog and then back into a human who ends up with a prince AND her own restaurant? Then she’s not doing too shabby. I think a lot of women get hung up on this rescue part, but seriously, what’s wrong with being rescued? I really wish people would stop trying to push their beliefs about gender roles on everyone else. Women are strong, hear us roar, yadda yadda yadda. We geeeettt itttt! Trust me. I hear you. I am a woman and I am strong. But sometimes, just sometimes, I like for my husband to rescue me. Sometimes I’m really tired, or stressed, or just not in the mood and I love when my husband swoops in during that time and gives the kid a bath, feeds her her dinner and does homework with her. I also love it when he opens the door for me, or helps me out of the car. I’m not broken, I can do all of those things on my own. He knows that. You know that. But it’s not about whether or not I can, it’s about the fact that those are things he wants to do for me and he knows I’ll rescue him right back.

I think it’s funny that some people (checkout the photos and article here) believe that princesses are all about just being pretty. I’m sorry, but what woman on earth strives to be ugly? Any takers? It’s ok to be pretty. That doesn’t equate to dumb, although people seem to think so. Princess Tiana owned a restaurant, Belle was super smart and an avid reader who was able to look a beast in the eyes and see his heart (she had discernment AND compassion, boom!), Ariel took life by the bolas and learned to stand on her own two “feet”, Mulan and Merida could both kick any boys arse. Oh and wait, that last one, Merida, didn’t even have a love interest. I’m waiting to see the problem.

A few weeks ago Johanna began calling herself a princess. “Mommy look, I’m a princess”. It made her so happy. She smiled bright and twirled around. And I agreed. She is a princess. She is beautiful (yup, I put that first because I wanted to. Deal.), super smart, sweet, curious, active, silly, sporty, and a princess. If she happens to meet a man later on in life who sweeps her off her feet and also treats her like a princess, she won. And I’m not mad at her.


I meant to be perfect, but then I got really sleepy

As I sit here typing I am beyond exhausted. Last night I played nurse, yet again, to a sick Johanna. It’s going on 3 weeks that we have had to battle this illness. I believe she was getting better, but then got the flu spray. I think it is giving her flu-like symptoms, but she’s two, so she can’t really communicate what is ailing her at this point.

I’m struggling. I’m struggling to be the kind of mom you read about in the HuffPost or see doing crafty ish on pinterest or tv. They’re so cheery and perky, and their house is festive and in order. They look super put together and so do their kids. They give you that fake grin telling you how much of a mess they are, or their house is and you, well, I look at them like bish please! You want to see messy? You want to see someone that looks raggedy? Come on over to our house because I do not have an ounce of energy to devote to anything right now! I have a million things on my to-do list, but really all I want to do is sit in my bed and cry. When will I ever get them done? Better yet, when will I ever be one of those stupid moms that I see in the media???

Some days I really feel like I’m failing as a wife. Wives are supposed to be able to keep crap together, but I’m failing miserably. I’m a wife who needs a wife! So, riddle me this – how do you stay organized when you feel like you have a million deadlines and you’ll never be finished?


Kidriffic Events for November 9-10, 2013

Hope to see you all at the CASA event today!

2nd Annual World on Wheels Family Festival
DeMatha Catholic High School
4313 Madison Street, Hyattsville, MD
When: Saturday, 10am-2pm
Admissions: $5 Per Person, Children 2 and under FREE!
This family-friendly community event will feature cars, trucks of all sizes, cycles and more! Come out to see these many forms of transportation in person. Enjoy an assortment of activities for kids of all ages… Moonbounces, food and more! This year Batman will make an appearance from 11am-1pm with his Batmobile. Proceeds go to Court Appointed Special Advocate/ Prince George’s County.

Dumbarton Gardens
31st & R Streets, NW
When: November 1 – March 14, 2-5pm Tudesday-Sunday
Admissions: Free!
Did you know that it is free to visit Dumbarton Gardens from November to March? What a special treat. The gardens are gorgeous and your children will love roaming in them. However, please take note of the special hours.

Watkins Nature Center
301 Watkins Park Drive
Upper Marlboro, MD 20774
When: Saturday, 10am–4pm
Admissions: Free
Join us for our 5th annual Trash to Treasure: A Green Craft Fair. This special event will feature vendors selling items made from recycled, organic, or sustainable materials. This indoor craft fair will feature local artists, non-profit environmental groups, and crafts for kids.

Raven Steals the Sun: A Family Celebration of Tlingit Culture
The American Indian Museum
4th St & Independence Ave
When: Saturday & Sunday from 10:30am-5:30pm
Admissions: Free
Meet Tlingit storyteller and writer Maria Williams, who shares stories about Raven Stealing the Sun from her children’s book of the same name. Gene Tagaban (Tlingit) will share stories about the trickster Raven and teach Raven’s favorite dance. Shelly Lawswill tell Tlingit stories, demonstrate weaving and show traditional drums, baskets and Chilkat robes. Divide into teams of “Wolves” and “Crows” – and learn games that teach about Tlingit clan structures, sing a familiar song in the Tlingit language, learn to weave a cedar bracelet, enjoy music and dance of the inland Tlingit, watch a food demonstration and much more.

Children’s Africana Book Awards and Book Festival
The African Art Museum
950 Independence Ave SW
When: Saturday 11am-2pm
Admissions: Free
The Outreach Council of the African Studies Association annually honors authors and illustrators of outstanding books published about Africa. Come meet authors and illustrators of the award-winning books for 2013. Other activities include:
Book signing outside the Museum Store
Face painting
Family art activity inspired by The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, based on a true story
Reading challenge and Africana Book Club (ABCs) passport
Creating your own Land Mark after viewing the related exhibition
Performance by E.L. Haynes PCS Marimba Ensemble, conducted by Premila Mistry


Man, I Feel Like a Woman!

In 2009 when I was preparing to become Mrs. Johnson, I scoured the internet looking for the perfect wedding day gift for my then fiance. I kept running into these “boudoir” marathon session advertisements, but I would quickly dismiss the idea. One thing I hate in life is bad photography. Even more, I hate photographers that have no idea how to capture the beauty in a woman that is not a size 6. I’m a pretty voluptuous lady with curves that need to be highlighted, and some baggage that I would prefer others not see magnified. As we got closer to the wedding date I did finally book a boudoir session and…I loved it! I loved every minute of it, everything about it. One thing that is incredibly important about boudoir sessions is that the photographer has to make you feel super comfortable, and you have to have some faith in yourself. Those two things came together for me AND my photographer really knew how to make me feel beautiful. At the end of the shoot, I cried. I cried because I had never felt as gorgeous and my self esteem had never been so high as it was during that photoshoot. And of course, dh loved the pictures!

Fast forward to my pregnancy in 2010. Again I found myself struggling to find a photographer that could make me feel good about my body during pregnancy. That is when I met Marianne Elizabeth. I’ll tell you the truth, I felt like I was taking a chance. Here was this petite, white girl taking my pregnancy photos. One thing I don’t think people realize is that lighting can be much more harsh for African American skin than it can be for others. So again I was stepping out on faith and allowing someone to photograph me…



I loved it! We had a great shoot and just a great time overall! The pictures came out absolutely gorgeous! I could not have asked for a better day of photo taking.

For any woman, wife, mother, single, whatever, who wants to feel beautiful, take boudoir photos with a great photographer. It just so happens that Marianne is having a boudoir marathon session this weekend in the DMV area.


Checkout her website and facebook page to see her work. And book asap. I promise you won’t regret it!


Kidriffic Events for November 2-3, 2013

Kids Euro Fest: Drumblebee
Artisphere in Rosslyn
1101 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA
When: Saturday at 1:00pm
Admissions: Free
“When four wacky researchers — who also just happen to be percussionists — fall under the spell of the moon, just about anything can happen! Drumblebee is a playful and rhythmic experience where triangles meet tambourines, drums, and xylophones in an attempt to lay down some groovy beats that will break the mysterious lunar trance! The show is performed by French percussion ensemble Quatuor Beat.”

Community Day at the Corcoran
Corcoran Gallery
500 Seventeenth Street NW
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free
Join The Corcoran for a free (gotta love free!) celebration of art. Notonly will you be able to view art, but you can also create it! Printmaking, ceramic work, and so much more! Plus, shop at the Community Art Fair, featuring fine arts and crafts made by DC-area artists. Parents, get ready to partake in beer tastings all afternoon in a Biergarten sponsored by Muse Café.

Fall Open House – Levine at THEARC
1901 Mississippi Ave, SE
When: Saturday, November 2, 2013
2:30 – 7:00 PM
Admissions: Free
Come out to meet one on one with faculty and department chairs, take a trial lesson and be placed for private or group lessons on the spot.

Instruction is available in:
Strings – Violin, Viola and Cello

Two FREE Sample Early Childhood Elementary Music Classes will be held Saturday:

Ages 1-2 years old – 2:30pm – 3:00pm
Ages 3 – 6 years old – 3:00pm – 3:30pm

Questions? Contact Regan Ford at 202-610-4123