Tuesday, February 26, 2013

In the Big City: Before I Die

I am a pretty big fan of public art displays.  The Pittsburgh Dinosaurs.  The Erie Frogs. The Garret County Bear Trail.  The Punxy Groundhogs. I love seeing art out in the real world.  But when a public art display is also interactive, meaning I can be a part of the art, well, that just about makes my day.

What do you want to do

On Sunday, Hubby and I had an impromptu day date in Pittsburgh.  We went to explore a couple of specific businesses, and ended up driving around and exploring parts of the city as well.  It was something I used to do a lot when I was single, and we did together a few times when we were dating.  While we were driving around, we stumbled into Allegheny Center, and drove past a remarkable building.  It had large squares of chalkboard paint on different spots of the building, and there were sentences written on it.  Each sentence began with the words "Before I die, I want to__________________".  The blanks were filled in on many of the sentences.  We drove by it, and I was so struck by it, visually, that I decided to drive back around Allegheny Center so I could stop and take pictures.

Before I die, I want to

When we got back to the spot, I got out of the car, and started snapping shots.  Some of them are a little hard to read, since it was obvious the chalkboards had been written on many many times.  The remnants of old wishes mingling with new wishes.  Many of the wishes were poignant, many were sweet, many were heartbreaking, and a few were just fun.  I searched and searched until I found a tiny remnant of blue chalk and wrote a wish of my own.  Before I die, I want to write a book.

Write a book

I have never been a huge fan of the whole bucket list concept.  I am not sure why, but to me it just seems sad.  I would rather live in the moment.  But this public art project took the whole concept of a bucket list and made it into something I found inspiring and incredibly moving.  If you live in the Pittsburgh area, I really encourage you to do some explorations and find this building.  If you live somewhere else, go exploring.  And do a little reflecting about what you want to accomplish during your time on Earth.

Let go, Be free, Be alive

See all the photos I took here.  Also see a video about the project here.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Review: Magic BB Cream from L'Oreal

I recently had an opportunity to try the new Magic BB Cream from L'Oreal.  I started wearing makeup in junior high school, and back then the prevailing mentality was that if you were going to wear makeup, you needed to wear foundation to protect your skin.  Beauty products have changed a lot over the years, mostly for the better, and now, we have options regarding what type of coverage we want.  Because my skin has an uneven tone and color, I most often still opt for a light foundation.  It just helps me get a more even look.  However, because my skin is so dry, it almost always looks like I am wearing makeup.  I am never able to achieve that dewy, fresh faced look.  This product really appealed to me, in the hopes that I could finally get that look.

Magic BB Cream says it primes, perfects, hydrates, and corrects.  Sadly, I found it lacking in all those areas.  If something is a primer, to me, that says it can be worn under regular foundation.  However, when I tried this, my makeup looked very thick and caked on.  I only used a small amount of the Magic BB cream, as well as a small amount of foundation, but it still looked like I was wearing stage makeup, not a good look.  Since the product claims to hydrate, I also tried using it without first moisturizing my skin; once again, the results were disastrous.  My skin looked so dry, and the pigment in the Magic BB cream was concentrated on those areas of dry skin, so again, I looked like I was wearing a lot of makeup, despite the fact that this is a minimal coverage products.

I found that the best way for me to use this product is by first moisturizing my skin as I normally would, then using Magic BB cream in place of foundation.  However, those claims to perfect and correct were also a let down to me, so I need to use spot corrector and undereye concealer, as well as powder.  And the results?  Well, they look the same as when I wear foundation.  The big difference is I feel like I am not wearing makeup at all.  And that is certainly a plus.

I think one of the reasons I ran into so many problems is that I chose the wrong color of Magic BB cream.  I have fair skin; I always use a fair foundation and the lightest concealer.  So, it stood to reason that I would need the lightest shade of Magic BB cream.  When I opened it to use it, however, the cream is nearly white. It is very light, and I think that is the reason it fails to even my skin tone and cover up imperfections.  While this is no fault of the product itself, consumers to need to be aware how very light (white really) the shade is in order to properly match their skin tones.

In summary, I think this product has a lot of potential for some women, but I just do not think it was a great match for me.  I think L'Oreal foundation is probably better suited to my coverage needs than the Magic BB Cream.

Note: I received a complimentary product courtesy of  SheSpeaks and L'OrĂ©al for review purposes.  All opinions are honest and original.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

It's Always Sunny in Kittanning

Always Sunny in KittanningHubby and I are huge fans of the show "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia".  We fully acknowledge that it is a show full of really screwed up humor, but man oh man, is it funny.  Over the holidays, we watched the entire series, every episode up to date.  This is probably the third or fourth time we have done this since we the days where we were just dating.  We often quote the show, and sing the songs from "The Nightman Cometh" episode.  So, yeah, we kind of love the show.  Which makes the fact that the following situation took place not at all surprising.

We are redecorating our living room (more on that to come in future posts), and we are in the painting phase right now.  Yesterday, we taped the room, and I spent a lot of time spackling holes and other flaws.  Today we moved on to the paint itself.  While painting, Hubby says to me "Where is Charlie when you need him?".  I knew immediately, he was referring to Charlie Kelly, a character in "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" who always get's stuck with the grunt work. After Hubby posed that rhetorical question, the following exchange occurred:

Me: Yeah, this is totally Charlie work.
Hubby: Most definitely Charlie work.
Me: Though, to be fair, would you really want Charlie painting our house?  Who knows what it would end up looking like.
Hubby:  At least there would be no rats.

Now, you really need to be a fan of the show to appreciate the awesomeness of this conversation.  But to those that are fans, doesn't this conversation absolutely make sense?  We could totally be on that show.