The Art of Applying Makeup

true

Don’t get discouraged if you don’t look like the women on YouTube or Instagram. They won’t tell you how many times they had to practice a look before they posted it. We all start somewhere. Watch and practice. It will all start coming together.

I think cut creases look amazing and I want to learn how to do them. If you know of any good YouTube tutorials please enlighten me to them!

XO

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Acceptance

Sometimes I reveal pieces of my heart and soul…

I didn’t create this blog with one specific focus in mind. I knew I wanted to write about things that would help and inspire others. That help and inspiration may be in makeup, clothing, DIY adventures, everyday thoughts, or even just telling you a little about my life. I don’t share too much about myself with people I don’t know unless I truly feel it could help someone. As of late, I finally feel like this dense fog has lifted which has aloud me to move on from experiences that I would never wish upon anyone.

In October of 2013, my dad had an accident and we didn’t know if we were going to lose him or not. I lost my mother in 2000 to breast cancer and the thought of losing my dad left me rattled and lost. Thankfully, we didn’t lose him and he has been on a path of slow recovery. Words cannot express how grateful I am that he is still with us. My dad and I are very close. Since his accident though, things haven’t been the same. I know many of you are wondering at this point “What happened to him?”. He collapsed because his heart stopped for 15 minutes. Yes, you read that right, for 15 minutes my dad’s heart was not beating. Thank God that there was someone there who was able to perform CPR. I am going to take a moment to tell you, if you don’t know CPR learn how to do it because you never ever know who you can help. As a result of his heart stopping so did the oxygen to his brain which in turn has caused him to have to learn to walk and talk again. Sometimes he forgets things and he can’t carry on a conversation like he use to. He went from being completely independent to needing 24 hour care.

This morning while I was driving down the icy, snowy rode I started crying. I do not advise crying and driving at the same time, but thus is life. It hit me at that very moment that things would never be the same with my dad. It broke my heart all over again. I miss my dad terribly even though he is here, and I thank God everyday for that, it’s not the same as it use to be. I am having to learn to accept that he may never be where he was prior to his accident.

When life changing things happen you don’t think about having to accept them because you assume that you will be able to go back to life prior to that moment. Sometimes though, you don’t get to go back and those moments change your life completely. You have to learn to accept things as they are and move forward. You can’t hold onto the past because it will prevent you from accepting where you are. Learning to accept things as they are in life doesn’t mean that you are giving up. It means that you are choosing to move forward to continue to enjoy life and better yourself.

dad, miguel, and i

Christmas 2012.

I love my dad and for him to continue to recover and progress I am going to have to learn to accept him where he is at now.

I am 25 and I feel like I know too much about life. Is that possible?

FOCUS

focus

This is true. I know that as soon as I think of something that I want to do, I start doubting myself. When I direct my focus with persistence and determination I am able to achieve things that I thought I wouldn’t be able to.

I was talking to my friend Karen of KP Says and she told me that the sacrifices I make now will allow me to be able to do what I want in the future. That advice resonated with me and I have heard it in my mind since she said it.

Right now, I am a mother, wife, and full time college student. I often times have thought to myself life would be so much easier if I just dropped out of school to go back to work. In reality, no life wouldn’t be easier. I wouldn’t progress and I would end up regretting it.  I love to learn, I crave to learn and with that knowledge I am going to achieve great things. I am willing to make whatever sacrifices I need to so that my family and I can have a better future.

I have always been one to look at life as a whole. Meaning, I realize that what I do and focus on right now is going to affect my future. For example, my husband’s family lives in New York City. We can’t go every year like we want to because it is financially unrealistic. Yes, it would be amazing to see them and for them to be able to see our son. But, bills don’t stop coming because you want to enjoy life. I know that in a few years when I graduate from college we will be able to see them once a year like we dream about.

This whole conversation started because Karen had a review of a Chanel lipstick she bought. I said “Splurging on makeup every once is awhile is okay right?” and she said “No, it’s not okay!”. I absolutely love when people are blunt and honest with me. Karen is older than me and when she was in her 20’s she made the necessary sacrifices so that she is able to travel where she wants and indulge in things that are high end.  At this point in MY life, no, it’s not okay for me to be splurging on makeup, clothes, or anything that is not a necessity. I need to remain focused on the bigger picture and that is eventually we will be able to go where we want and buy what we please. Right now, we are are making the necessary sacrifices so that we can do just that.

I felt the need to share this with you all of you because I feel like we live in a time where no one really does direct their focus. Everyone wants that instant gratification even if it does mean that they will go without necessities. I am grateful that I have the opportunity to go to school and be a full time mom. A lot of people would kill for that and I am not going to take it for granted. Funny, the lessons you learn from makeup…

So, what is your focus?

One Last Look

Colourful 2014 in fiery sparklers

(Image: Google Images)

Happy New Year to each of you!! I hope you have another great and blessed year xo

I don’t know about you, but I am ready for 2014. I love the feeling of starting fresh and anew. When I was younger, my family moved around a lot. My dad would change jobs to provide a better life for our family. One of my favorite things about moving was the fresh start that I got each time I moved. Granted, it sucked having to make new friends and get used to a new place but I always took it as an opportunity to reinvent myself.

Just because 2014 is staring me in the face I don’t want to forget 2013. I have experienced so much and each experience has helped shape me into the person that is writing these words to you. Even though we are starting a new year, do not forget the good memories. It is healthy to let go of things that have held you back. I know it is easier said then done but don’t dwell on the past because doing so will only bring your past into your future. Take this opportunity to start anew.

I am not one for new year’s resolutions. I make clear short term goals for myself that will help me reach goals that I only dream of for the future. Two of my main short term goals for this year are becoming more organized to curb the procrastination problem I have and to take better care of my body. So far, I have been doing well by taking baby steps. I learned quickly that when you make goals they do not happen over night. They take time and dedication.

With these words, my friend, have a safe and happy new year’s eve and I will write to you all next year!!

xo

Etta

Have you made any goals for yourself?

Working With Brands

Technically, you are selling yourself…

brands

Blogging is my outlet and I do it because I truly enjoy it. As a result of putting in work, I have received opportunities to work with brands. A brand is a company, no matter how large or small. After researching on the internet I found that there was not a whole lot of information on working with brands and how to conduct and protect yourself as a blogger. I have thought of and created a list of things I wish I knew when I started working with brands. Please note that if you are new to blogging that blogging takes work and time, things aren’t just going to fall in your lap.

  • You, yourself, are a brand You have created a brand for yourself whether you are a blogger, YouTube guru, or social media mogul. Your name and face are attached to something that a larger population can recognize you by. You are presenting your ideas, thoughts, tips, tricks, etc for everyone else to use. Your brand can be powerful if you have a clear focus and present yourself well. Think of all the famous bloggers and YouTube people that have created a name for themselves.
  • Always remember, no one owes you a damn thing If you ever approach a brand or are approached by a brand remember that they do not owe you anything and you do not owe them anything. Nothing is owed, to either person, until a clear and mutual agreement is met.
  • Do not be a pest I was speaking with a company owner that said they get up to 25 e-mails a day of people asking them for free product for review. First off, rewind and ask yourself “Have I given them any reason on this earth to want to work with me?”. Many brands already have clear cut guidelines of what they want and expect from their promoters. Make sure you are meeting their guidelines and that you are giving them a reason to want to work with you. If they turn you down then ask them what you can do to improve. DO NOT continuously e-mail and pester a company, they do not like and in turn will not like you.
  • Beware of your mouth If on your blog, YouTube videos, Facebook page, etc you are bashing companies and calling them out by name chances are NO ONE will want to work with you. Trust me, there is a nice way to say you didn’t like a product or aren’t to fond of a company. Your mouth can get you in loads of trouble and remember things travel so fast on social media.
  • Give people a reason to want to work with you Present yourself in a way that people and brands want to work with you.
  • Is it worth it? Before working with someone or a brand ask yourself “Is it worth my time and effort?” meaning are you going to receive back the rewards for the work you provide. Also, know what the benefits of working with a particular brand are. How are they paying you for the time you put into promoting their brand?
  • Know the guidelines and expectations Know what is expected of you and have a clear written agreement. Make sure that this is all in writing in case you need to refer back to it.

If you are a beginner blogger and reading this remember that what you put in is what you get. Believe it or not, blogging does take work and is time consuming. If you are starting blogging for fame or for free product you aren’t going to get very far if that is your only focus. You need to focus on your content and presenting that content well enough that people want to continue to see it.

These are just a few points that I think are good if you are ever considering working with a brand. Above all, HAVE FUN!!

Have you had an opportunity to work with a brand yet?

Raw Beauty

What is your perception of beauty?

Lana Del Rey posted this picture to her Facebook page this morning for her video Tropico and she has been receiving a lot of ridicule via the comments. As we all know, people can be ruthless when they are hiding behind a keyboard.

lana del rey

There is one thing that I know for sure: Be unapologetically proud of who you are. Flaws and all. If you are, no one can make you feel less then them and they can’t tear you down. I applaud Lana for taking this photo and not having it photo shopped or airbrushed to perfection. We live in a world wear we strive for unrealistic perfection. Perfection does not exist and beauty is perceived differently by everyone. However, why do we continue to tear each other down and hold others to the standards we know don’t exist?

In a world of filters, airbrushing, photoshop, and whatever else have you it is easy to think that perfection does exist. I absolutely love it when people don’t edit themselves to oblivion. It makes them raw, real, and beautiful. That is reality.

Thoughts on this matter?

xo-

Etta