Archive for June, 2011

Smithsonian Folklife 2011

One thing I love about DC is the Smithsonian!! Tomorrow the annual Folklife Festival begins on the National Mall.

?uestlove of the Roots will be in the house during the Soul Train Dance Party.  The fun begins at 6 pm and it’s FREE.  This year the themes are Peace Corps, Colombia and Rhythm & Blues.  Dates are June 30, July 1-4 and July 7-11.

Smithsonian Folklife Festival Info


Goodie Goodies

I’m a beauty-skin-hair-makeup product junkie.  I don’t discriminate – drugstores, department stores, online boutiques, day spas.  If you make something that I think will get the job done, I’ll give it a whirl.  I constantly try new things because I believe it’s good to have options.  While I love some of my luxury brands, I’m aware that there are often less-pricey options that give great results.

One of my best finds comes from Target – the Sonia Kashuk beauty line.  Ms. Kashuk is a makeup artist who created this line for women like me. Women who know good quality, but seek reasonable prices.   Great product at a fair price – what more could anyone want.  The brushes in this collection are amazing.  Durable construction, great for application, easy to clean.  I enjoy the lipsticks and lipliners.  They cover my lips smoothly, wear well and pull my look together.   Also a fan of the eye shadows.  Bright, pigmented color that goes on easily and looks fresh all day.

Check her out and try  some of my favorites:

Lipstick – Dahlia and Mauvey

Lip Gloss – Bronzey Corals

Eye Shadow – Goldenrod Duo

Brushes – Core Tools Blusher, Powder Brush, Crease Brush, Eyeshadow Brush and Pointed Blender Brush

You’re Welcome – Enjoy!!!

Social Skills 101:The Ultimate Eating Machine

Do you ever find yourself sitting at a dinner table with a group of new people and wondering what to do and when to do it?  I occasionally teach social skills/ etiquette to family members and students.  The goal of these sessions is showing you the rules so you’re comfortable using them in any situation.  It doesn’t take much to learn these rules, and once you commit the basics to memory you can do your thing wherever you go.

This week I want you to think of eating socially as something to look forward to, an ultimate eating experience if you will.  For this lesson remember the “BMW” – put your table manners in the driver’s seat. BMW here is not a performance vehicle, but stands for Bread-Meal-Water – the organization of your place setting.

Your visual:


Your B – Bread plate is over to the left, top corner.  M – Meal is in the centerW – Water is on your right side, top corner.  Once seated at the table, place your napkin in your lap and visually orient yourself with the features of this dining experience.  In addition to your bread plate, you’ll find your forks on the left side of the meal.   The fork farthest away from your left, will be the first one you use.  You’ll then eat from the outside in, using one fork per course.

Knives will be on the right because most people are right-handed and in this world majority rules.  In the United States we tend to cut with our dominant hand, put the knife down and then eat with the same hand.  As you can see in the picture from my lovely dining room table, the silverware is laid out to give you everything you need to get through the meal.  For some courses the waiter or waitress will bring you additional flatware  – like a steak knife or soupspoon.  Sometimes they will remove unused flatware as each course is completed.  This varies depending on the restaurant and the training of the individual servers.  All of your beverages – wine, water, Coca-Cola will be on your right.

Now and then someone dining with you might drink from your glass.  If this happens, quietly ask them to pass their beverage to you.  This trade is important because the first instinct might be to take the glass to your left.  Well if you do that you leave your other dinner companion, without a drink.  This should all be done as subtly as possible.  No need to embarrass anyone or overreact.  The same with your bread plate.  If someone starts eating your roll, or using your bread plate don’t  make an announcement to the table that so and so doesn’t know the rules of etiquette.  While you might think it’s funny to tease someone about their shortcomings, it’s rude and pretentious, so don’t do it.  Remember the goal is an enjoyable dinner.  You want everyone to remember you as a pleasant person, not the know-it-all monitoring everyone’s table manners.

So keep your ‘BMW’ in mind and approach your next social event with confidence.

Happy dining everyone!!

Season 25: Oprah Behind the Scenes

Now that NBA finals are over I can get back to the show that inspires me…Oprah Behind the Scenes. This is a look at the final season and I am a big fan.  I love watching the way the show comes together. She does a great job challenging her staff – pushing them to be the best. Those high standards, balanced with respect and strong work ethic are the reasons she has been wildly successful.

Truckeroo June 2011

Friday after work I tagged along with a colleague to Truckeroo at the DC Navy Yard.  We took the Circulator bus and geared up for the promised live music and fun foods.  When we reached the spot we met up with another hungry friend, got our over-21 wristbands and headed inside.  We circled the lot, scoped out the popular trucks and charted our own course.  First stop was the BBQ Bus. I got some yummy sauced wings and tried to eat them with one hand while waiting in line at Eat Wonky.  My colleague complained that they weren’t crispy enough, but I was cool with the texture.  They were also covered with dill pickles, sliced pickled onions and jalapenos.  Our second stop boasted the Wonky Dog and Wonky Fries among its choices.  I’m usually an adventurous eater, but I went for some plain fries this go round.   My colleague went all out having the Wonky Fries – gravy-covered french fries, sprinkled with squeaky cheese.  I snagged a few fries.. tasty, but that dish was definitely more than this girl wanted to handle. Besides I was determined not to fill-up too soon.

For months I had been on a mission – meaning to, trying to, thinking about ways to hit up Curbside Cupcakes and I finally made it happen at Truckeroo.  Anyone who knows me through a mealtime knows I am a big fan of baked sweet treats.  Often I review the dessert menu prior to ordering my entrée. Well let me say that after having a strawberry cupcake with strawberry cream cheese frosting I am a big fan. Definitely worth adding to my twitter feed.    Looking forward to chasing some of these vendors down around the city and putting next month’s Truckeroo on my list of places to go.