Wifey

Nobody's Little Mrs.

Happy #OaksDay 2017!

Happy Kentucky Oaks Day everyone!

I know that the entire world waits until the first Saturday in May and the Run for the Roses, but the first Friday in May and the Run for the Lilies is just the best day to celebrate all fabulous fillies!!

Enjoy!

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Being a “Spiritual Gangster” in an Irreverent World

Recently, I posted this photo of myself in my Spiritual Gangster tank and while of course, I really like the shirt, I never thought it would get so much attention.

Interesting term, spiritual gangster.

What does it mean exactly? If you’re not sure, Webster’s won’t be any help. The term isn’t included in our trusty reference.

But I think Urban Dictionary  sums it up nicely:

Someone who lives life to the fullest. spiritual gangsters are so magical, they have the ability to manifest anything they want instantly just by their ability to release resistance and allow pure positive energy to flow through them. The universe always has their back!! They are enlightened deliberate creators of spiritual evolution and the expansion of consciousness. They focus on the positive and always reach for a better feeling and a higher vibration. They always seek the greatest good possible for themselves and others…. They are hardcore lovers. They love the entire world very deeply and passionately. But make no mistake, they are fierce warriors who will handle any situation like a badass!
(I took the liberty highlighting some of this definition’s many assets of being a spiritual gangster.) I don’t know about you, but  I’ll happily associate myself with this term!
 
 
While it’s become very popular for people to claim enlightenment and profess how #blessed they are, many of those people are not being true to anyone, least of all themselves.  Many of those same “#blessed” people also troll the internet and insult, name-call, and shame other people, all the while righteously proclaiming their “strong faith.”
 
Hypocritical, no?  Because it’s exactly that kind of intolerance and irreverence that directly opposes any true faith or spiritual path. There is an obvious lack of not just respect for other people, but a lack of mere consideration of others. What happened to “live and let live,” to “smell the roses,” to “appreciate the little things”?
 
Listen–social media is lousy with the “blessed” hashtag, but unless people actually, honestly, and indiscriminately embrace a positive attitude and an appreciation for all things on a spiritual level–unless they seek the goodness in all things–then  I would suggest taking a holiday from the social media hamster wheel and stop misusing it so blatantly.
 
In the meantime, if you can identify as a spiritual gangster–or if you want to be one–wear it proudly and share it widely! Then you can sincerely feel #blessed.
 
Namaste, friends!
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Ask Wifey: Part-Time Housemates or Full-Time Relationship?

Dear Wifey,

My boyfriend never finished the home projects he starts. We “part-time” live together and when I first saw his home I thought many of the home repair/rehab projects had just been started. Boy, was I wrong.

It is his marital home, where his now-grown kids were raised. My opinion about what’s to be done is not welcome. I’d like him to sell the house so we could possibly get an “our house” down the road. When I bring any of this up he gets angry.

What do I do?

Frustrated in Philly

 

Dear Frustrated,

One of the ways in which relationships can be challenging when we are older (from you telling me your boyfriend has grown children, I’m guessing at least he is at least 40), is that most of us are less eager to change and/or compromise. I’m not saying this as a criticism, rather as a fact. By middle age, most people have already made compromises, learned lessons, and have decided what they like and how they want to live.

You mention that you are “part-time” living together in his house and I would imagine he would want you to contribute your opinion and make the place yours as well, rather than make you feel like an unwelcome guest. I gather that you have your own place too, and I wonder if he feels the same about your place.

My understanding of the situation leads me to believe that one of two things is going on here: Either he is feeling the same way about you and your place–like you don’t want to include him in your place–or he is just very set in his ways and unwilling to fully share his home with you–or anyone else for that matter.

Before you do anything, I would figure out which situation is happening, and the best way to do that is simply by asking him directly.

If it’s the first scenario, maybe you need to spend more time together at your place too and hopefully, you will both feel more comfortable in each other’s homes and will learn to find your own place in each other’s space. Personally, I think buying a place together is the best idea so you can have a fresh start at creating a common home and life and a full-time relationship.

The second scenario is more troublesome, unfortunately. It’s entirely possible that he simply is very comfortable with his solo living arrangement and–other than having you as a part-time housemate–doesn’t really want to change his life or his routines in any way. If this is the case, I would seriously consider how much more effort you want to invest in this relationship.

No one should get angry with someone who loves them–and whom they love–and who wants to share a home and a life with them. On the contrary, it’s often the path many people hope their relationship takes. I think you owe it to yourself to find out if he is one of them. Once you do, you can decide what path you want to take and whether you’re he’s the right person to walk it with you.

 

 

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Find Wifey on Bloglovin’

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Having a hard time keeping up with all the blogs you enjoy? Well, if you didn’t know already, Bloglovin’ makes easy. Find and follow all your favorite blogs in one place!

Just click the link above to find Wifey on Bloglovin’ and start your own custom feed of all your favorites. 

Hope to see you there!

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Sunday Cooking with My Mother

Almost every Sunday during my childhood my mother made fresh pasta. She’d pull out the wooden board–handmade by my father for that specific purpose–and within minutes flour, egg, and water would turn into fresh dough. She would knead and re-knead it, let it rest. Then she cut it, rolled it out, cut it into smaller pieces and soon the table would be lined with tiny orrechiette, or cavatelli,  fusilli, or tagliatelle.

When I moved out on my own, my father made me a pasta board, knowing how much I loved to cook (and to eat homemade pasta). But, unfortunately, the only action my board ever saw was the rolling out of pre-made pizza dough purchased from the market! Life just seemed to take over and my parents visits never seemed to include enough time for a homemade pasta lesson.

It’s taken a while, but I finally managed to get that lesson from my mother and put my beloved pasta board to proper use. 

There’s no better way to spend a chilly winter Sunday than cooking with my mom. For now, enjoy these photos from a great afternoon in the kitchen. I’ll soon be sharing the proper recipe for my mother’s pasta dough.

Buon appetito!

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Autumn’s End: A Pumpkin Spice Latte and a Stroll

Autumn around Town: Pumpkin Spice Style
It’s difficult to believe, but autumn is almost officially over. Once we’re into turkey leftovers and the holiday shopping season has officially begun, it is full-on winter. 
So before the week is up, take a last walk around town, admire what last leaves of the fall foliage are still hanging on. Enjoy the gorgeous fall colors that surround us, grab a latte–pumpkin spice or otherwise–and breathe in the final days of autumn. 
Sig.Melaina
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In the Kitchen: Migas

Perfect Ingredients: Migas

My first time eating Migas was only about a year ago, and even though I had no idea what a great plate of Migas tasted like, I knew that I wasn’t sampling the best. But I knew that I would love it when I tasted it, which in fact, was the case months later when I finally had the real deal. Delicious!–honestly I could eat Migas every day. So of course, the next step was to find a good recipe to recreate the scrumptiousness at home.

 
I found a few different versions–from Gwyneth Paltrow’s recipe in her book It’s All Easy: Delicious Weekday Recipes for the Super-Busy Home Cook, to Ree Drummond’s (aka the Pioneer Woman) from her website (also available in her first cookbook, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl ), to a slew of random online cooking sites, and even a recipe on the package of the corn tortillas I bought!
 
Ultimately, I liked the simplicity of Gwyneth’s recipe and  tweaked it just a tiny bit.  It’s so delicious and so easy, I suspect I’ll be eating it pretty often!
 
MIGAS (makes 1 serving)
 
1. Add about 1 tablespoon of Olive Oil to a nonstick pan (at least 8″ in diameter)

2. Heat oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, but not smoking (when a bead of water “dances” in the pan),  places 2 corn tortillas (cut into wedges) in the oil, along with 1 Tbsp of chopped white onion (or more to test). 

3. Pan fry the  tortilla wedges/saute the onions, until the wedges start to crisp and onions soften.

4. Crack two eggs directly into the pan and, with a wooden spatula, scramble the eggs together with the tortillas and onions. (Optional, you may also add crumbled chorizo at this point if you wish.)

5. When eggs are almost cooked, season with salt and pepper, sprinkle to cilantro (to taste) and add crumbled Cotija cheese (a couple of Tbsp). (Gwyneth suggested Queso Fresco, which is also very good. Cotija is drier and a bit more crumbly, so it’s a matter of taste.)

6. Transfer entire contents of pan to a plate, and top with your choice–sliced fresh avocado, pico de gallo, fresh salsa. Garnish with crumbled cheese (Cotija or Queso Fresco) and cilantro.
 
If you have your own favorite Migas recipe, please share it–I’d love to try more variations. If you try this quick recipe, let me know how it turns out!
 
Sig.Melaina
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Shelf Life: The Divorce Papers by Susan Rieger

The Divorce Papers by Susan Rieger

 

There are many novels that tell the tale of a love story, a marriage, a breakup, a divorce–intimate tales of emotion and relationships. But when it comes to divorce, one thing that people often forget–or for that matter, never even consider–is that it’s not about emotions at all. Divorce is about business. Yes, of course, we are often emotional about divorce, but the reality is that it is, at it’s core, a business and legal matter. With that in mind, it was refreshing to read The Divorce Papers, by Susan Rieger, which is the story of a high-profile divorce, told through the literal papers of the divorce–letters, emails, legal documents and filings, pages from the law books of the fictional locale of “Narragansett,” etc. 

 

The book brings out the best and the worst of it’s characters, much like an actual divorce does to those involved, and it offers many moments of much-needed (in the book and in real life!) comic relief. It manages to be both heartfelt and humorous and I felt engaged and invested in the futures of Mia (the client) and Sophie (her lawyer).  Rieger kept me reading and I’m glad she did. 

 

Sig.Melaina

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Party OR Politics? Party.

The election is over, and whatever your vote, whatever your opinion, whoever your choice for President, I think it’s time we gathered with friends and family–especially those who have tested our patience over these last months–and have a party free of  “Parties.”

Here are some things to enhance the festivities . . .

 

WEAR:

Make sure your guests know that the only things you’re serving are cocktails & escapism.

What’s your choice? Party Preference t-shirt by WILDFOX

 

PREPARE:

Shake it up in style with a gold-accented  retro cocktail shaker.

New York Dot Cocktail Shaker by Kate Spade

SERVE:

Let your guests know that no matter who they voted for, you still think they’re fab . . .

Fabulous Cocktail Glass, by Easy Tiger

CREATE:

We can’t always get what we want from politics, but from the bar, well . . . the possibilities are endless!

Mrs. Lilien’s Cocktail Swatchbook

GROOVE:

The DC-set TV series Scandal has a soundtrack of classic music, heavy on the Motown; sure to get everyone dancing rather than debating.

Music from the TV Series “Scandal”

So whatever happens in the weeks, months, and indeed, years to come, remember . . .

  • we have it better than pretty much most other places on earth
  • we have each other
  • and it’s always happy hour somewhere.

Cheers!

Sig.Melaina

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Tried and True Beauty

If you’re anything like me you love trying new beauty products (and you also probably have a drawer full of products that completely missed the mark). But of the years, some of the best, most consistent products I’ve used have been around for a long time and for good reason. A few of these are drugstore items, some are designer, but all of them are worth keeping on hand.

 

From left to right, top to bottom:

 
1. Kiehl’s Creme de Corps is a very rich, luxurious body lotion that you skin will just drink right in. A little goes a long way, so while it’s somewhat pricey, it will las you a while. It also comes in a thicker, cream version, available in a tub, which is great for deep moisturizing for hands, feet, knees, and elbows. The bottle pictured is the original Creme de Corps, but the product has now grown into a product line including a moisturizing creme (in a jar) and new scents.
2. Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant  Also a very rich cream, this product from Elizabeth Arden is glycerin-based, so it’s more like vaseline, and works wonders with very dry skin. You can use it on your face (though I would be very sparing–just a dab will do), hands, and lips. It’s great if you ever moisturize your hand and feet overnight with gloves and socks. 
3. Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque This is a great drugstore classic. (They have updated the packaging design though, and I’m not a huge fan of the retro styling; which is odd, because normally I like retro looks.) It actually does smell a bit minty and it certainly is very green, but most of all it does wonders to clear blackheads, and shrink pores. You’re just a few dollars away from clear pores and fresher skin. (I have also been known to use it as an overnight spot treatment for blemishes if I don’t have my regular treatments on hand and found it to work well in that capacity, too.)
4. Mario Badescu Cucumber Cleansing Lotion Mario Badescu was the first place I ever went to have a facial as a teenager in New York and the first “grown-up” skin care products I ever used. I like the Cucumber Cleansing Lotion because it is refreshing and cooling on the skin–and though it’s a rather gentle cleanser, it’s a very effective one as well. These days I use more potent, anti-aging cleansers, but I like to keep some of this on hand for days when I want to take it easy on my skin.
5. Mario Badescu Drying Lotion You may have seen similar products to Mario Badescu’s Drying Lotion, but this is the original, real deal. The key to using this is simple–Do Not Shake! The type on the label is terribly small, so I would’t blame you if you skipped it, but this product is not meant to be shaken. Using a cotton swab to dip into the bottom, you then just dot  it onto blemishes overnight (or when you’re not leaving the house). I will caution you to be careful of getting carried away and dotting every tiny blemish you see; it is after all a drying product and you don’t want to trade a blemish for dry skin. Not to mention you don’t want to go to bed looking like constellations in the night sky.
6. Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion This moisturizer from Clinique is a staple. It’s lightweight and gentle, works well for all skin types, and is perfect for summer/warm weather use. Clinique has since added a richer, Dramatically Different Moisturizing Cream, which would be better for very dry skin, or in winter/cold weather.
7. Elizabeth Arden Millenium Eye Renewal Cream I love this eye cream. It’s rich and balm-y, but not too rich to be too heavy for the sensitive skin around our eyes. Best of all, it really does improve the look of fine lines and wrinkles around. 
8. Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Lipcare Stick The Eight Hour line expanded to include this lip care stick, and I love keeping this in my purse for an extra dose of moisture. The line also includes a small pot of Eight Hour Lip Balm which is great, but sometimes a lipstick is easier.
9. Rosebud Lip Salve Keep one in your car, one in your purse, and one on your bedside table. This salve will keep your lips soft and smooth–and give you a just the subtlest tint of rose. 
10. Benefit Benetint I am a big fan of liquid makeup and Benetint is perfect for adding a rosy glow to your skin. As light as water, you won’t even feel like you’re wearing makeup. It’s great anytime–and you can easily use it with makeup–but alone it’s just right for active days, outdoors or in.
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11. Benefit Lemon Aid If you’re like me–you have very translucent skin around your eyes and you don’t like to wear eye makeup daily–then this product is a must-have. Used alone, this lemon-colored cream spreads smoothly over your eyelid and instantly brightening your eyes and hiding any natural shadows and darkness. Alternately, used under eye makeup it provides a beautiful base for long-lasting color.
12. Maybelline Great Lash Mascara I don’t even think this one needs an explanation. It was likely your first mascara and it’s still one of the best.
13. Givenchy Kajal Eyeliner This smooth black liner is perfect for a smokey eye or for my favorite look, a simple swipe along the upper lashes for a winged “cat eye” look.
14. and 15.  NARS “Jungle Red” Lipstick and NARS “Jungle Red” Nail Polish An “it” color since its inclusion in the 1939 move The Women, NARS “Jungle Red” is a beautiful, deep red color that will go with everything. Always.
16.  Chanel No. 5 Eau de Parfum The classic of classics, there’s really nothing I can say about Chanel No. 5 that hasn’t been said in the nearly one hundred years since its release. It’s definitely not for everyone, but everyone should be familiar with this legendary scent.
17. Clarins Beauty Flash Balm Pretty much the first-ever “BB” cream, this beautiful cream give a perfect dewey glow to your skin. Sound counterintuitive, but use just a tiny bit over your makeup.
18. Benefit High Beam Far and away my favorite highlighter, the pink tone reflects light beautifully. A great year-round addition to your beauty routine, it works when your pale or have that just-back-from-vacation color. This liquid is applied with a nail polish-sized brush so it’s easily applied and blended. You can apply it as a final touch over your makeup, or alone if you’re going makeup-free.
19. Guerlain Meteorites These little round light-reflecting beads have been around for a long time–so you may have memories of your mom using them. They provide a powder finish and highlighting in one. Over the years they’ve been refined and now come in several shades to compliment your skin, as well as a bronzing shade. 
20. Essie “Ballet Slippers” Nail Polish When I first started getting manicures this was my go-to color. Pale, but not white; pink, but not too girly, it gives a natural but elegant look for day-to-night wear.
21. Lolita Lempicka Eau de Parfum I discovered the original Lolita Lempicka fragrance in the duty-free shop in at Pearson Airport in Toronto and I have loved it now for well over a decade. Created with elegant floral notes of Ivy, Aniseed, and Violet; complimented by aromas of Cherry, Vanilla, Praline, and Tonka Bean; and finished with Iris and Musk, this floral scent is a classic. Lolita Lempicka has expanded its fragrance collection over the years, so if the original scent is not your style, you’ll likely find another to suit your tastes.

 
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