Sunday, December 30, 2007

Happy New Year! and Divas in the News..

Hi Darlings:

Sorry for not being able to write in the last few days. My computer was being repaired. I can't believe I almost missed writing before the New Year! I hope you have something to wear...

I just want to wish you all the best in the New Year and say a warm thanks for visiting my blog everyday and allowing me to share my thoughts, perspectives, likes and dislikes with you! Since I am leaving tomorrow morning for NYC and will be away from my computer I want to now wish you all the best in the New Year!

Hugs and besos.

Here are some of the 2007 happenings before the year is over...

1.) Everyone thinks too many celebs were misbehaving this year! (NY Times) (Wash Post)

2.) The Monster That Ate Entertainment. (CNN)

3.) The Top 10 Movies, DVDs etc...(TIME)

4.) Fun Cocktails! (In Style)

5.) Lucky How To: Drop Waist Coat (Lucky Mag)

Thursday, December 27, 2007

I Got Minxed ... and So Can You!


Hope you all had a fantabulous holiday and wishing you all the best in 2008!

Last week I was contacted by the folks at Minx Nails who offered me the opportunity to try their product! They wanted to know if I would want a complimentary manicure from Natasha Ray of the mobile spa - Dainty As She Wanna Be in DC. Like yeah! Did not need to think twice about that one...

I have been curious about Minx Nails ever since they’ve become Beyonce’s favorite Fall/Winter nail go to product. And I’ve also been curious about the Mobile Spa so whadya know... the perfect combo. I set up to meet Natasha expecting to be pampered and delighted.

We scheduled an early morning visit at Natasha’s nail lounge on Capitol Hill at 709 D, SE. Right off the bat I liked the idea of one-to-one attention. She even set up a DVD player with Sex In The City but although I love love love SITC I knew I would be spending most of the time conversing.

Before applying Minx Nails Natasha gave me a manicure using her signature line of natural products. On my hands she used a cranberry/fig scrub and honey/almond/shea butter lotion. The final step of the manicuring process was different because instead of applying moisture she had to remove it from the nail bed so the Minx Nail coverlet could stay on the nail.

She took out the product. I had many options. I was told that you can customize the coverlets to match a dress, party theme or color scheme. But went with a funky design instead of the gold metal I’ve seen on Beyonce’s nails. I was feeling adventurous.

(Here are some more ways to use the product...)She then applied heat from the blow dryer to the coverlet. Afterwards, she stuck a coverlet on each of my nails. Then she used a blow dryer to ensure the product was sealed to the nail. Finally, she trimmed off the extra parts so that coverlets shaped my nail beds.

And the best part was that right after the manicure, I stuck my hands in my purse and then for a moment panicked only to realize that there would be no smudging. That never happens to me! To remove just use blow dryer to loosen the coverlet and peel off from side-to-side. Presto... There should be no damaged nail beds like with acrylics! Umm...think no chemicals, totally green and durable! Loves it...

Finished product:
Just in case you are curious: Natasha’s can be contacted at either and 202-538-0142. Cost: $45 plus travel if she comes to you. BTW, Natasha says that many of her clients are men who want a mani/pedi but not in public ... gift ideas!

Hugs and happy holidays!

Stay tuned for a giveaway on this product...

Monday, December 24, 2007

Diva Musings: Happy Holidays!


This weekend I decided to do some pre-Christmas cleaning. I got really into this project and decided to finally look through boxes of mementos, docs and files that I have been carrying with me throughout the years with every move. Ye gads! So I began looking through these boxes smiling at thank you and birthday cards, finding money that my parents sent me years ago in an envelope ... yes ... go figure. I too scratched my head at that one... extra shopping $$. Amid the good and exciting finds were also old bills and reminders of experiences that to be frank I would have rather forgotten. Nothing too alarming but events that gave me pause then and now. Literally, I wondered why I had been carrying around these things with me for so long. Not only were they taking up space and cluttering my basement but they are life clutterers as well. So needless to say I thought that since the NYE to me means moving full speed ahead to the future I want - getting rid of some of this stuff would be a good start. Funny the things we take with us consciously and subconsciously. And to be truthful I actually felt lighter as I opened the trash can lid.

Hugs and all the best in 2008!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Divas in the News and more ...


I won't even go there about the holidays drawing near or the latest fad of celebs getting pregnant being out of control. Remember like three years ago when no one in Hollywood got preggers or if they did it was not a photo op moment ... now its seems like being preggers has become the new va-jay-jay shot. Go figure!

1.) Catfights were really taken to a new level at the Puerto Rico beauty pageants! Miss Puerto Rico was not lying. (Lossip)

2.) Are they are aren't day? Rumors (again) of Beyonce and Jay-Z wedding. Maybe tatoos on the finger will be in vogue in 2008. (Celebslam)

3.) Eva Longoria Parker (mouthful) has a new movie out?!@$ Aparently she might be surprised too! (dlisted)

4.) Powerful hubbie unfashionable for Hill. It's all about ... (WashingtonPost)

5.) The ultimate Diva is now the oldest Royal Diva. (Yahoo News)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

We Are Simply Smellable ...

Hi Darlings:

So I am watching the reruns for one of my fav shows the other night. I must say I am getting really tired of reruns ... yes ... no new episodes anymore because of the WGA strike. (Aside: I hope this crazy situation is resolved before the New Years) So, anywho I began to pay close attention to the commercials on TV and I must say that I am positively surprised that Americans aren't smelling more like roses or any of the other flowers used to make all the perfumes ... ummm violet, gardenias etc etc. Yikes! As I type Gwen Stefani's L is on the tube. Cute outfit Gwen....These commercials are everywhere! Click here to watch ...

Mariah Carey, Paris, Britney, Sarah Jessica Parker and many more have their own scents or soon will. Amazing! And if they are not hawking their own scents they are in ads for Chanel like Keira Knightley, overwhelming the market like they do the tabloids. Even with all the hoopla over these celebs and their scents I am still married to my favorite, non-celebrity endorsed Oscar by Oscar de la Renta body lotion (~$32.29 for 6.8 oz on

I have tried other scents but its my favorite! And you know what they say ... once a compliment goes to your head there is no return. I've just gotten too many compliments wearing this scent to turn my back on it. Either way I know I am not in the minority in not buying the celeb endorsed brands because the perfume industry is not doing as well as expected.

Either way celeb perfume adds are entertaining and creative!

Ciao bellas!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Be Bella Than You Are Today...

Hi Loves,

Today was the Christmas party at work and needless to say I was doubtful as to whether or not my inner holiday cheer would show up. BUT low and behold once I decided to wear my red roman inspired dress with my green wool blazer my mood was transformed and I was (cliche)overcome with joy. All in all it was a typical work event but with more food and fun.

My dilemma for the day happened on my way home. So, I spot cute guy on the train. And right away I realize that I should have retouched my lip gloss before heading out ... le gasp. So I am seating in the train car trying to discretely lick my lips to a seductive shine. I really don't think this worked at all and digging in my purse for the tube of lip goob in a "cool" fashion was not the least bit productive! Yikes!

What I need is Bella's powder room.
The cutest petite makeup attache for only $32!! Its organized and efficient - perfect for taking to or keeping at work so you will never forget to retouch on the way out. How fantabulous! Divas it might be too late to buy as a gift but never too late to buy for yourself! My new the holidays.

Ciao Bellas,

Sunday, December 16, 2007

For Sophistication ... Go SHORT!


So at work last week I looked up while walking through the elevator bank and made eye contact with the other Diva on the floor! I gasped. Her hair was short (how mine used to be); her boots - 3+ inches (the height I enjoy); and her outfit one word=together. I on the other hand had chosen comfortable and flats that day. Yikes!! I had to say her outfit was great - admiring as one Diva to the next. But for the rest of the week the flats stayed home and it was on...well at least in my mind! :) Needless to say, those of you who know me know that after years of short hair (few inches long) its shoulder length and beyond from here and out! I loved my hair short and appreciated the ease of maintenance but in my life right now there is nothing like a cute ponytail or easy flip - useful for effective flirting! loves it.

Well on a stylistic front it is good to see that Divas everywhere are refreshing their looks by cutting their hair (ahem ... removing their weaves) to create a sharp and simple sophistication. For example, Katie Holmes instantly became a women and fashionista worth noting and no longer Dawson's sidekick gal pal when she recently cut her hair. Star Jones went from tranny to take me seriously Diva Divine. Take a look at other transformations... Viva la BOB!

Ciao Darlings!

Divas in the News and more ...


Who can believe we have just 9 more shopping days to go before Christmas! The more I think about it the more I've come to the conclusion this has been a December on steroids. Its seems like Halloween was just yesterday and today I am forced to think about X-mas and New Years! Well I am taking it all in stride, determined to finish my Christmas gifts - craft projects - on time! It's got to get done. Well the best part of the holidays so far has been the many holiday parties (did I say NYE is right around the corner - Yeah - and so is the resolution on working out more!!!) Gotta make another batch of my award winning bread pudding! (look out Martha!) Write me if you want the recipe!

Here are some clips to keep you focused on this rainy Sunday!

Ciao Darlings.

1.) Perez Hilton: Easily the Ugliest Man in Hollywood - Inside and Out (Lossip)

2.) Vivica Fox asks bloggers "Baby, what did I do to you?" (Stereohyped) hmmmm....

3.) Stripper poles in the NY subway ... no way! (gothamist) Note to self: next time in NYC bring Lysol spray and hand sanitizer!

4.) Will Smith finally gets his hands dirty (ENEWSBUZZ)

5.) Ashley Simpson/Barbie - Barbie/Ashley Simpson - take your pick (boy culture)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Kate Moss ... Furrific Hanger

Hi Divas:

I'll be the first to say that while Kate Moss is not the best role model for ... ummm anyone she can definitely be seen as a trendsetter who takes risks. Her coat game is on this winter! Eventhough I would not make some of the choices she has I can definitely say that the choices she makes are unique and at times cutting edge. Here are what we've seen her in so far....

Lets just hope PETA does not get wind of her choices!

Ciao Bellas!

Hugs ... its Wednesday.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Red ... the Color of the hour.

Hi Divas:

Seems like red has become the Fall accent color of the hour. It is showing up everywhere!

Katherine Heigl uses red in jewelry accents and her purse. For budget versions of the jewelry try Forever 21 or Target and you can find a similar version of the purse at

Nicole Richie recently accentuated an all black outfit with a red beret! It was a darling touch that is so divine I want to go buy one now! We all can get the look for less at Urban Outfitters.

Red lipstick after laying low for many years since its advent in the 80's is becoming vogue again. However, for a few tips: when wearing red lips tone down the eyes and cheeks. Its a statement color so over applying makeup can put you on the verge of gaudy.

Ciao bellas. Have a great day!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Divas in the news and more...

Hi Divas:

Art Basel is definitely THE event to go to if you enjoy art and love to be seen. This event is currently happening in South Beach, Miami. Check out .... Big Walls to Fill - Art Basel report (Washington Post)

Ummm...yeah men can be Divas too!! Hello.... Eyeliner for men?! Pencil these guys in. (also in the Washington Post)

Jane Fonda knows all to well some nicknames are not only hard to swallow but also hard to shed. Jane: Unforgiven (NY Post)

Fashion Gifts...come look and see what is all the rage. (NY Post)

Boxing Matches are becoming the fashion place to see and be seen. Brad and Angelina are so aware of that! (d listed)

Ciao bellas.

Have a lovely Monday!!

Diva Musings: Friendship

Only a good friend will spend 6 hours of a Saturday helping you pick out the perfect cocktail dress. Friends are essential to sanity and sometimes the cause of our insanity. Athough the necessary foundation for any relationship worth its salt, friendship can be the initial goal that shatters relationships of a romantic nature. Why? Sometimes we just expect too much too soon.

Ciao loves.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Diva Divine! New Sex in the City movie

Divas the trailer is finally here!! Too bad we have to wait until May 2008!! :(

Divas in the News and more

Hi Hons:

1.) Russian Divas are definitely making their mark on the international scene according to the NY Times. In Russia its all about the children of famous Russians making the tabloid news and less about the folies of wayward and confused actresses like our own Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears.

2.) Fashion finds: Kate Hudson. (I'm Not Obsessed)

3.) Tyra Banks will be jumping out of a cake any minute now. (Evil Beet)

4.) Carrie Underwood diet secrets. (F Listed) {check out her fabulous red dress}

5.) Really? For Hanukkah? Now that's just ducky! (Washington Post)

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Great DC Find - Park at Fourteenth

Hi Divas:

Some friends and I were on our way to an event the other day. When we arrived at the location our hopes of seeing the show were dashed because it was already sold out and we were about 45 minutes early. Not feeling defeated - we decided to head on to the next spot which was The Park at Fourteenth. This place is super-spectacular. The vision of a '70s era club designer - there is traditional wood paneling, contemporary lounge look combined with upscale furniture Definitely nothing currently on the scene in DC. Each floor has its own signature drink - they are also able to make whatever cocktail you like. Since we started on the first floor we sipped the yummy and refreshing Betty. Each of the four floors has a drink named after a former first lady. The scene is diverse and diva chic.

Definitely a place to see and be seen. Wear something nice...jeans included!

Another Great DC Find!

Ciao bellas.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Fashion Review - Spring '08

Hi Diva Socialistas:

Last week at the Corcoran DC the local Fashion Group Intl chapter had their semi-annual discussion on the latest trends in the Spring '08 fashion shows. All the fashionista darlings always seem to range from those who dress to the nines - minks and all to the students in jeans! I opted to dress up...

Its always fun seeing the trends and even more spectacular if you have been tracking the shows and they come up with the same conclusions as you. Overall the Spring trends were shown to be not only heading towards the romantic but also there is a focus on shape, transparency and prints all in a way slightly different than we've seen in the last few years. One point to note that was mentioned during the discussion is the effect the advent of the Internet has had on the fashion trend cycle. Technology brings designs to the masses at a greater speed causing the cycles of fashion to no longer be around 10 years but a lot sooner.

Here are some quick mentions:

1.) Yeohlee I loved for hair and makeup and Dior by Pat McGrath.
2.) Layering transparent fabrics (like chiffon) is great especially with the new trend of citrus colors. The layer of for example black transparent fabric over a yellow dress (Carolina Herrera) tones down the bring color and allows you to wear the hue without calling too much attention to yourself.
3.) Shape - or rather loose fitting dresses took us away from the tight fitted fabrics and designs from past years. Diane von Furstenberg, Missoni's kaftan
4.) High waisted pants - despite what was said and after being in Paris a few months ago...I don't believe this trend will last. In Paris no one was wearing highwaisted. It is such a awkward item to fit into a wardrobe.
5.) Blown up prints like paisley were refreshing (Christian LaCroix); Armani and Proenza Schouler
6.) The citrus trends (yellow, pink, orange, green) of the last two seasons is still in! Go figure...
7.) The art or statement shoe - everyone should have at least one in their closet...see last weeks post on the statement shoe.
8.) Bangles and cuffs are said to be in but for me they were never out!
9.) On the green scene - cotton is making a comeback

Overall the presentation was worthwhile and informative! Have fun with your Spring '08 wardrobes.

Ciao bellas!

Eyes Lips Face- Deal of the Week.

Hey Divas:

So I received an email from a friend about the $1 per item deal at Eyes Lips Face and makeup company that has been around for a little over a year now. I was a little skeptical about ordering because the shipping cost was about $7 but after I got over that minor deterrence I went on a shopping spree and chose 13 items. Woooweeee... thirteen whole dollars plus the seven.

Can I tell you the Angel "Super Glossy Lip Shine" is the Best clear lipstick I can remember ever buying!! I put it on and not only does it smell great (grape vanilla) but it also looks great on my lips and it is not very sticky which can interfere with intimacy. :=)

Ciao Loves!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Diva Musings!

Hi Loves:

I am sure you've noticed that at the bottom of some of the posts I have been signing out with my thoughts entitled "Carrie Bradshaw Thoughts" - usually in yellow font. Well darlings I will now call those ruminations "Diva Musings".

Diva Musing: New people come into our lives every day. New in the sense that we have not seen them before or new in that we are able to see the same friends in different ways or new in that they themselves are going through transition. Sometimes we have used our value systems to pre-judge these people building barriers that keeps us from seeing them in new ways. How do we move past our impressions of their outsides when we have our blinders on? Like a good truffle bon bon there is so much more on the inside to enjoy than the outside shell.

Boots Loving!


As it gets colder - I cringe stepping out. My down comforter is always so much more inviting! But alas being a Diva in hiding is no fun. Looking at the boots below makes me perk up about heading out maybe they will make you happy too!

Hugs Loves!

Sam Fine Blogs!

Hi Divas:

I am sure you all know of Makeup artist extraordinaire Sam Fine. Well he has just created a beauty blog where you can learn amazing tricks like self-bleaching your eye brows. He has just started but from his vast repertoire and his amazinf coffee table beauty/makeup book I am sure the trip to his blog will be worth it for the great tips!!!!

Here is on the left in a recent Ebony magazine article (just surprised Pat McGrath was not featured) ...

Ciao Bellas!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Statement Shoes!

Hi Divas,

I know many of you with the proverbial 9 to 5 jobs (like me) are now starting to ponder on what to wear to your holiday parties. I was contemplating this dilemma today at an event when a fab-Diva walked into the room with a white shirt - puff sleeves; black pencil skirt and fuscia shoes; minimal jewelry - the shoes had already made the statement! Divine!

I loved and appreciated the simplicity and fabulousness that was her assemble because it defied my image of the statement shoe.

Prada - Spring '08

Now, when I and more than likely you visualize the statement shoe we think of the non-traditional and unconventionally constructed show piece ( See above). Another example are the latest from Marc Jacobs as since in the Spring shows. But the budget fashionista without Prada or Fendi funds can always find ways to improvise.

Here are some examples:

1.) Bows are always a good way to go. The more extraordinary the better. They add flare to ordinary pumps and are a simple accent that lends flexibility in use. From Piperlime you can find this Ninewest offering ($90).

2.) Metal and high and funky heels are another way to go. Check out these Shelly platforms at Bakers Shoes for ($79.95). Note the braided portion of the shoe.

3.) Embellishments like flowers always add that extra pizzaz to even the basic colors. You can even attach a brooch to your shoes for the extra, unique statement for a truly Diva Divine experience! Look at these ABS by Allen Schwartz "Benefit" sandals on Nordstrom for ($164.95)

And for the Fashionista willing to spend a little more but not willing to go the route of the Prada show piece above there are always Pucci, Pedro Garcia and Alessandro Dell'Acqua - see Shop Bop (~$325-$800)

Ciao Bellas!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Minx Nails

Diva Claire asks:

Hi Diva Bugs. While watching the AMAs this year I was admiring Beyonce's nails and wondered how her stylist was able to get her nails to match her golden dress.

Diva Bugs says: Hi Claire. I was admiring her nails too! For awhile there I thought they were two-toned. But now I realize she used Minx Nail Coverings and at an angle the metal glowed from the reflection of the lightbulbs. Interesting.... These nail coverings are supposed to simplify and speed up the process of getting a manicure. However, the coverings are available in limited high-end salons.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Joys and Aches of Fall

Hi Divas:

I've been so busy that last few weeks catching up at work and entertaining visitors. Well I finally have time to write.

One of my favorite time of the year is the middle of Fall. I can't resist the yellowing leaves. They provide the most spectacular show. Purely divine. All the trees right outside my office at work are yellowing and everyday they cause me to take a deep breath and just wallow in their beauty.

Not so much of a favorite is the dry skin I have to endure during this time of the year! I have found surprisingly that my favorite product this year is Eucerin Aquaphor (original ointment). (could only find pic of healing ointment) It is the best and there are so many uses for this product.

Carrie Bradshaw-like thoughts: "In life there are two types of people, those who make time to smell the roses and those who can't see the importance. Maybe sometimes we are all one of those people on different days or at different circumstances. Does it take a special person in our life to point out the roses to us enabling us to stop and take a look? Do we just have to be in the right mood to enjoy what's around us? Overall 5 minutes can cause a world of joy and is barely unnoticeable in the greater scheme of things."

Saturday, October 27, 2007

J'aime Paris - Days 5, 6 and 7

Days 5 and 6:

The last two days I take it easy. This post will be short since these 2 days merely entail sightseeing, ambling through the city and eating ... ummm and shopping.

In Paris it is easy to just walk from place to place. I find myself at the Notre Dame which was a great and spiritual experience. There is also lots to see for architectural art history appreciators and like myself. From there the Latin Quarter is within walking reach. The Sunday bazaar at the Latin Quarter is worth a second look. There are lots of old books, pictures and old lithographs. Lots to see and buy if you want gifts that aren't the cheesy Eiffel Tower statuettes. I next walk through Marais on my way to the Picasso museum.

On a fashion note, I still observe that for Parisiens the bell sleeved look has either come and gone or never really arrived. All the jackets or caplets are straight sleeves with empire waist lines. I think I counted two women with bell sleeves in a highly tourist area - so not sure if they lived in Paris. For certain, eyeware is most definitely a fashion statement. If you have to wear them here you most definitely most make a statement. The different or brighter the better. Wide legged pants on women is not a popular look at all. All jeans and slacks are form fitted.

Marais on a Sunday is great for people watching since its bohemian and all the stores are practically open.

Later that night on the 6th day, the final dinner in Paris was at La Cagouille. The best seafood ever. The meal started with mini courtesy clams. Then we had sardine sashimi and mini fishettes (my word) for appetizers. Red snapper and sea bass - rounded out the meal. The restaurant came highly recommended and the experience was purely divine. It was a satisfying 2.5 hour dinning experience.

Day 7:

Au revoir Paris

Thursday, October 25, 2007

J'aime Paris - Days 3 and 4

Day 3:

On Day 3, I start focusing on shopping and doing research on whether or not stores in Paris would be interested in carrying my Diva Bugs purses.

On this day however, the first stop of the day is at the Reciproque stores on Rue de la Pompe that I discover in the guide book. This I have to say is a must see for an American because its the Parisienne version of the thrift shop that puts any thrift/consignment store I've seen here to shame! Rows upon rows of Chanel, Prada, Betsey Johnson, Louis Vuitton ... you name the couture designer and their clothes - vintage and last season - will more than likely be on the racks! Shoes, jewelry included ... The also have a menswear store. But don't go looking for bargains because there are none. That American concept has not made it to Paris. :)

We next make it too Marais at the other side of town. The first store I enter Ginger Lyly has the nicest lady. I look around the store and notice everything Dominica - flag, pics, shoes in (red, yellow and green) - perplexed I question her about it. She says it is her love and goes on about the island being her favorite place in the world ... instantly she does not know it but we are now best friends forever! I tell her I was born there. We start talking about what I should do about getting my line in Parisienne stores. I go to her store because she is known for carrying young designers. But, she is closing shop and moving to Bali. She gives me great advice. We move on...

Who knows maybe Divabugs might be in Paris....:oneday. :)

After a "quick" day of shopping we head home. Dinner reservations for the Buddha Bar. R has been dying to go there. When she was last in France it was well known for celeb spotting. Dinner at the BB is a delightful pan-Asian experience. We have frog legs for appetizer which can be both Vietnamese and French. There is the option for sushi or bento boxes but we go for the hot entrees. The dinning experience was great, however no stars were spotted.

After dinner, we head upstairs to the bar area and hang out at a small table with random guy who has open seats until his girlfriend comes. The BB seems to be the place to go for drinks. It is packed and seating is high commodity. Bring lots of cash. Our companion is well travelled and shares stores on his excursion. We listen. He is not bad to look at. His girlfriend comes and she is fun to hang out with.

After a few hours of talking to them and some Brits who are here for the Rugby World Cup we head to L'Etoile to end the night dancing.

L'Etoile was fun. I always find clubbing abroad to be a great experience. Young and old dancing. Uninhibited fun! I had a great time.

On Day 4:

I do some marathon shopping (lets see: out to outlets by 8, come back home, shop some more) and finally take notes on the fashion trends that make up the Parisienne scene. The mohawk is there too, country western inspired boots for women, pierced gem moles on upper lip, slim fitted tight jeans, leggings with everything.

There is not much to say but shopping should be declared a sport! It's Saturday and since I realize that most stores are either closed on both Sunday and Monday or just Sunday so I know right away that I am on a mission. I leave on Tuesday. In the end I am tired and famished.

After shopping I do the cafe thing again. Unavoidable and plus I still haven't taken my - writer at the cafe drinking capuccino while writing in my journal picture. I am on a mission. By the end of today it is chillier than the other days and the reality sinks in that Parisiens will sit outside rain or shine. They are hardcore!

As usual dinner is planned. Great opportunity to try on my new boots and take pics everywhere... ummm yeah.

We have tons of fun at dinner and hanging out with some new French friends ... delightful...

"Carrie Bradshaw Thoughts": Fun is a three letter word that holds a different meaning for practically everyone. For some it holds much complexity that bars them from truly enjoying life. For others it is merely a simple three-letter word. Living in the moment is not as easy for some as it is for others.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

J'aime Paris - Days 1 and 2

Day 1:

I arrive in Paris really early in the morning and realized while making my way through the airport that 1.) I over packed because my heavy bags are not conducive to trekking quickly through CDG - gates A to G. and 2.) putting on my French thinking cap is taking effort.

I am looking for the train. I ran into an airport attendant who tries to get me to take the expensive shuttle to the city. We have those hustlers in DC too....chuckle. But I know the train is the way to go. I will have to find another attendant without a "friend" to help me.

Thankfully my talkative nature was a boon on the plane because a fellow American was kind enough to alert me that tomorrow there might be a transportation strike in Paris. Hmmmm....gotta find out what that means exactly. Well at least I will be prepared for tomorrow.

8:40am: I finally get to the train.

Amazing aspect of riding on the train is that you get to see the beauty that is the outskirts of Paris. Everything is so green and the vegetation lush as the train woshes by. Already I can tell in a way that I stand out because I spot a few eyes on me most of them from various African people in my train car.

Amazingly, my bag is big but people go around it and look at me and wave with the "don't worry" hand motion and nod. Some smile. Do they think I am Parisien or do they realize I am a tourist? Who are these people and why aren't they rude!

9:40am: Rue de Villiers - on my way to the hotel.

9:50am: Ok. So I admit that I am lost. I roads are winding and curvy. I can't tell which way is north or south and my map confusing. I go to a small hair salon and ask the owner for directions. He is not only really helpful but smells really good and is so Parisien - nose and all.

Get to hotel. Check in. Ask for directions to the tour buses. Quick shower. On my way!

Find the Eiffel Tower where the tour bus stop is - but have to wait to visit the ET because R (my travel buddy) wants to go tomorrow. Admittedly I know with my fear of height issues having someone else there with me would be a good idea.

The tour bus was great. I get a full view of the city and can get on or off whenever. We go through Invalides, Champs Elysee, the Arche du Triomphe and the Louvre where I get off.

Louvre: The Louvre was an overall great experience. I got to see many of the art works and sculptures that I studied in undergrad - the etruscan statues, Code of Hammurabi, Medieval art and Venus de Milo - awe inspiring. I am not sure if the French painter section was what I expected especially my visit of the Mona Lisa - but overall the Louvre is a must see on a visit to Paris. I still feel like I did not see everything.

End the day sitting outside of a cafe with glass of wine. The french guy next to me is explaining the wine and the area of France where it is made. He seems really nice. Cafes are so good for people watching.

"Carrie Bradshaw" thoughts: The tour bus gives me an up close and personal look at the many buildings in Paris. Already I can tell there is a lot that is special about Paris - most importantly the amazing architecture. The buildings have that extra swirl and curl, romantic reliefs of latin or Parisienne woman in flowing gowns and muscular men doing what muscular men do - showing off their muscles holding heavy baskets of fruit. Is it being surrounded by all these extra touches that puts the Parisiens and visitors in an indefinite romantic mood? Or is it that these extra touches backfire and can sometimes make Parisiens just plain bitter?

Day 2:

I wake up late! Yikes! Gotta get out of the hotel and to the apt and figure out how much the transportation strike has affected the Paris metro. Ummm ...on second thought I will take a cab ... if I can find one since I have to go from one end of town to the next. I find a cab. The driver says that the trip will cost 15 Euros. Heavy bags and the unknown regarding the strike tell me that 15 euros is a great deal...:) As we drive through the city and quaint neighborhoods I have a "Two Days In Paris" moment. As we zip through the streets on our mission....I could just tell we are were zooming by the different Arrondisements. I squinted instead and focused on the different store windows. I ponder once again my rationale why Paris is considered so romantic. So much goes into the architecture. Even the metro signs have curves. The buildings have so much extra curves and swirly details. You will find no Washingtonian plain gray facade.

When I finally get to the apt. I am amazed not only that it exists ...;) but also that it is quite comfortable. Only major issue was having to lug my bags up four flights of stairs! Way better than the hotel room ... which was too tiny and for the price not that extravagant. It served a purpose.

R and I spend some time catching up and taking pictures but had to leave after sometime because the day was flying by and we had to make it to the Eiffel Tower. We wait in line for about an hour but the waiting was worth it just to experience getting to the top of the tower. It was exhilirating eventhough the physical going up was nerve wrenching.

Afterwards, we walk to the Champs Elysee and hang out with the beautiful people. Sipping coffee and eating pastries .... delightful!

On the way home, I met guy from Martinique in the subway. He was shy but fun and accommodating. He was looking for a job so I thought it would be a good opportunity to ask him about job hunting in Paris as a minority. He says that the climate now was to hire two or three blacks so as to give the impression that the company/firm is not prejudice. He was optimistic because fellow minority engineers who had graduated from engineering school the year before he did were all gainfully employed. I thought that was a positive light for him but mentioned getting in the door was a simple challenge but the biggest hurdle might be climbing the proverbial corporate ladder.

This was definitely a day for meeting interesting french guys. I guess I can blame new 10 minute buddies on the chaotic Parisienne transportation system.

At the next subway transfer point, I meet Chris the astronomer who lived and studied in Hawaii for 5 years. His dad was American - they don't talk. He goes on and on.

R thinks its odd that people share their personal stories and secrets with me. I just shrug and and say they can't resist the smile. In fact I am really interested in learning more french culture and society below the surface. I have heard and read so much and now I have the opportunity to get the word from the horses mouth so to speak.

When Chris gets tired of waiting, he leaves and we meet Frederick who is French-Canadian actor and I strike up a conversation. We speak of politics and his life...of course. He tells me he grew up in Canada but met his wife in Paris and has lived here ever since. He is well read about American politics and is rooting for Hillary ... in fact all French people I meet are rooting for Hillary. Go figure... she is a force. He hates Sarkozy and thinks Bill Clinton would make a good president for France ( myself; Hillary in the US and Bill in Paris...interesting). While we are in France, Sarkozy's divorce is final. His wife has a new man and he a new gal. Frederick is amused by this turn of events.

The train finally comes and we head home, go to restaurant, eat and call it a night. I am tired.

"Carrie Bradshaw thoughts": On delightful days when all is going well people rarely have any time to give each other. But in the most disasterous times we always look beyond the adrenaline rush and reach out. Why is it that we are finally at a place where we put the importance of looks aside and see through facades at what is important?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

I love Paris in the Fall!

Hi Loves,

For the most of this week and a little of the next I will be in Paris! Thats paaaa-wreeee - phonetically for the those who don't speak francois.

I plan to post a few stories while away if possible to let you know about my stay. So stay tuned!!


She Bangs!

Hi Divas:

Sorry about the delay in typing... Since my exciting birthday I've been soo busy writing and working. But, now I am back and I have wonderful stories for you.

So loves without further ado I took the plunge last week and got bangs! For scaredy-cats like me and those of you who are hesitant, my hairstylist had the greatest solution. She gave me two layers of bangs - 1.) first she cut a short layer: straight across my eyebrows. A traditional bang look. But not as thick as Halle's or Heidi Klum's. Thin enough so you don't gasp at the loss of your locks, ie it should grow back soon. 2.) second she trimmed my side swept bangs. You know the long, hook behind your ears length that looks great with hair down or up in a bun.

The two bangs are a safety precaution just in case I get bored with the short bangs, I can have more than one option. Since the short layer is so thin it is not difficult to sweep them up with the longer layer. The best of both it!
Ciao Loves.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Birthday Celebration - Divafied!

Hi Divas:

My birthday was on Saturday! Like a typical Virgo I planned every minute of my day and I must say I enjoyed every moment! It was most definitely a diva divine day throughout! Since this was a celebration I won't get philosophical but I must say that I combined two of my favorite things, finding peace and hanging out with my friends. Both may seem on opposite ends of the spectrum but they bring me joy...and fun.

Saturday was a day I enjoyed the patchwork that is the Georgetown experience. I started the day canoeing on the Potomac river at 8am. To insight thoughtfulness and meditation, an open expanse of water and a small boat are the way to go. My rowing skill level is way below beginner ... yikes ... but my ability to enjoy my moment on the water did not leave me remissed.

Next I met friends at Baked and Wired for tea and pastries. This architecturally exact and well defined space as my friend V raved offered some of the best cupcakes in the city. I opted for the refreshing hibiscus tea and a pastry and savored every morsel that came with good conversation.

Yoga and spa treatments followed tea time. I spent the rest of the afternoon resting before my night out. Over dinner I once again experience the tremendous joy of having my friends from the different facets of my life meet each other. Simply divine laughs, giggles and tons of glee and fun. Dinner at Bangkok Bistro lasted 4 hours.

A few more hours of clubbing and my special day was complete! Until next year....what shall I plan.

Birthday Poem
A Young Lady looked up one evening. The moon was Full, bright, energized and full of light. Already in a pensive mood,She pondered the uniqueness and timeliness of the lunar and all cycles.She realizes that life is amazing because right as one cycle ends another new and glorious one emerges. The adventure was about to start all over again.Time to Celebrate!

Ciao babes.
(1 or 2 pics to come later)

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Great DC Find: Taste of Georgetown

Dear Divas:

On October 13th, Georgetown is once again having its annual food tasting event - Taste Of Georgetown. This should be an exciting event since you can't go wrong with the mixture of food, wine and Jazz. The participants will 30 Georgetown restaurants like 1789, La Chaumiere, Seasons, Mie N Yu, Red Ginger, Fahrenheit and Paolo's and Jazz from Blue's Alley. It's like the perfect dining experience all in one place. Be sure to bring lots of cash! The event is from 11-4pm.

Taste of Georgetown 2006. Courtesy of

Ciao loves!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Hats Essential

Hey Divas:

Ok ... so here and there I've been talking to you about Winter (W-word) and Fall (F-word) but in reality I would as soon toss those thoughts out of my mind because - Summer (S-diva) was still in full force. So imagine my shock (and yours too) when it was close to 60 degrees on Sunday. I actually had to wear a sweater! For the first time I was aware that Summer was over...sad. Ummm...well maybe by next week I will feel better - love Fall - truly, madly deeply. In the meantime, it's all still a shock.

But the presently lowered temperature has me thinking I should start thinking some more about my cold weather wardrobe. And no cold weather wardrobe is complete without hats or gloves as accessories. Like I've said before for the most part during F-word and W-word - all your friends and fellow Divas ever see are you outerwear so you have to make a point of choosing well.

Here are some hats that I think any budget fashionista would love...

Brown Betmar riding hat found at Village Hat Shop for ($52)

Urban Outfitter Heart Pattern beret (24.00)

Proper Topper's Tweed bucket ($45)

Ciao loves.

Monday, September 17, 2007

So Over Wrap Shirts...

Hi Divas:

Like you, some days I enjoy having a "chest" and other days I am just annoyed. Sorry to start off crass but on Sunday when I was trying to wear my favorite red jersey knit wrap shirt - and my "chest" was not making me happy. Don't you just hate that wrap shirts don't always fit right and then you have to either pin the two sides together which is not attractive because the joined section becomes noticeable, stretched, not polished and unattractive. Even more so unattractive if you put a camisole or shirt underneath and the colors don't match. That strategy tends to remove the "sexy" from the outfit especially when you want a form fitted fashionable look. And sometimes you may just want to wear the wrap shirt in an attractive manner that makes you feel less self-conscious and fashionable. So I came up with a new and comfortable way to wear my wrap should try it too! I connected the two ends of the shirt with out wrapping.

Although I think this look will only work with upgrading a denim look - I think its worth a try.

Ciao loves. Happy Monday!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Great DC find ... maybe ... Sale at Benetton

So Divas:

I relearned a lesson yesterday that I've known for sometime now ...all sales are not created equal!

After work yesterday, I do the bionic woman thing - I drive back into the city run errands and still make it to a meeting (on time) ... go figure. After an informative meeting, I am ready for home but had to grab my sister from Chinatown when I saw the unbelievable. United Colors of Benetton (UCB) was going out of business. The sign outside the door said 60%. 60% - I really had to repeat for emphasis and not because I am suffering from whip lash because my head spun too quickly.

So I park the car run in and guess what. The store is half empty. What a dilemma?! So I grab and try-on. All is fun until I am standing in line and the sales person says that its not 60% off of everything and the price on the clothing is final...bummer. I still pay for my stash because in the end the deal was ok not GREAT and I needed an outfit for the Runway Africa show this weekend.

Any who the store closes on Sunday so hopefully by then the "going out of business sale" will be better.

Ciao loves. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

MB NY Fashion Week - Wrap Up

Hi Divas:

Sorry for not posting yesterday. Well fashion week is over and it seems it began just yesterday. The final two days of shows were most definitely a refreshing switch off from the earlier programming. We are met with Zac Posen, Betsy Johnson (kinda tame this year), Marc by Marc Jacobs and one of my favs Monique Lhuillier.

Overall, I felt that the clothes presented were seen before. There were not that many show stoppers - the Marc Jacobs mod look - been there, Zac Posen - Charlize Theron could've worn to the Oscars before. I am just elated that white although experiencing significant exposure this year might is some ways bow at least half of the attention to other more energized colors.

Zac Posen - feminine and flirty
Marc by Marc Jacob - new take on 60's
Monique Lhuillier - timeless
John Varvatos for the guys

Ciao Divas,


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

NY Fashion Week - Day 5

Hey Divas:

It seems like the second week of the Spring 2008 shows has most notably brought in a bit more color. Yesterday, Philip Lim one of my favs presented his line with mostly my fav color ... yellow! Exciting. His line did keep with the feminine trends that we have been seeing in the previous days - I am so excited to see more wearable fashion. But I have to wonder what the shows are like visually near the stage with no over the top and outlandish designs and creations. But overall there will be tons of variety in the ready-to-wear fashion within the next few months.

I was excited about the strong feminity shown in the Derek Lam line. Great cuts, sharp looks with broad and strong shoulders.

Diane Von Furstenburg was viva glamorous with lovely patterns, colors and full skirts. Love love love the dress below. It looks like an outfit you can wear both during the day and at night. Since I find my shoulders to be my best feature...this outfit is definitely rockable!

Ciao loves, Stay tuned for more fashion updates!

Monday, September 10, 2007

NY Fashion Week...femininity returns

Hi Divas:

It looks like the fashion scene is taking a more feminine turn. Gone are the booty shorts of last years Fall shows. Majority of the designers featured so far at the Mercedes Benz fashion week so far have featured dresses that are feminine but not over the top and form fitting. Are we heading back to the days of simple chic? Maybe.

Badgley Mischka and Lacoste featured slacks but for the most part the shows were pretty tame. Lacoste had lovely dresses like the one below. Overall the theme at the Fall shows seem to have a lot to do with the color white
Akiko Ogawa featured a wonderful mixture of black and white dresses. Her look is overall flirty which is probably my mood nowadays!

Ciao Divas!

Friday, September 07, 2007

My New Coat!

Hi Loves,

Check out my new Coffee Shop Plaid balloon hem coat ($138 - Nordstsrom) . Yikes! Winter is not even here and I can't believe I am already thinking about it. I love the ballooning back hem and the plaid! So chic and divine absolutely great for a budget fashionista.... well maybe not really bargain but not a major splurge I loves it! A winter coat matters because it is "The Accessory" when its cold outside. No one sees your watch or jewelry or even you fashionably slick new top BUT they will notice your coat! Hugs loves.

Ciao ... have a safe weekend!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

End of Summer Skin!

Hi Divas:

Hope your holiday weekend was fantastic! If you are like me you were definitely in the water (ie swimming pool) over the Labor Day weekend. Now you are either worried that you had too much sun or you are thinking ahead to how you are going to moisturize your skin during the Fall season. I will definitely be using my all time fav ... Body Shop's Shea Body Butter ($20) to moisturize my skin and get ready for the Fall weather.

You can also try the latest St. Ives Mineral Therapy Advanced Body Moisturizer ($4.99). Its a holistic product with tons of great nutrients.

Two choices to consider!

Ciao loves and stay smooth.

Pat Mcgrath - Diva to Remember

Hey Divas:

Pat McGrath is definitely a name to remember. Few know about her but she has great influence on our everyday lives. She is the (are you ready) Global Color Cosmetics Creative Design Director for Proctor and Gamble - in other words she designs the makeup. She also creates the catwalk look for many top designers such as John Galliano, Stella McCartney, Prada, Christian Dior and many others. Ok so not exactly budget - those shows but Maxx Factor has offerings I am sure you can dig. Here she is below.

And to think she doesn't ever look like she wears makeup! Loves it! Her catwalk looks are creative and artistic. She uses makeup in an imaginative and cutting edge way.

If you like Max Factor you definitely already know what I mean. But if you can't afford Maxx Factor then you can always go to the website for inspiration. They show you various looks and how to create them. Check out the entire website. With ingenuity you too can create some of these looks from finds at Sephora, CVS or even Target. The process should not be difficult.

Ciao loves!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Signals, eyelash batting and more

Hey Divas:

Last Thursday's Washington Post's style section had an article titled "Tapping Into The Secrets of The Stall" by Lynne Duke and DeNeen L. Brown. I was curious about this article especially since the Senator Craig issue that has plagued the news for the last week. I was fascinated by the foot stumping signals and wondered whether or not there was a special guide that told them about these signals.

How the heck do people find out these things!

I was thinking about these signals and became miffed that there were not any for heterosexual women and men. I am sure shy gay guys are happy to not have to go up and speak - like most straight guys. I think that shy straight guys miss out because of their impediment. Like the article says all gay guys do is the 3 second look (1-and-2-and-3), turn to look at the person after they walk by if the person turns they are interested in gay too and interested. Simple ... easy breezy!

I have been pondering this situation for some time now... and thought to myself we - heteros -need signals too. Signals like foot tapping are so universal. So if you have short hair and can't do the flip, or have no coordination and therefore can't bat your eyelashes you can still get the message across.

We too can have a 3 second rule. For example, if you stare at him for 3 seconds that should mean come talk to me and I won't roll my eyes and ignore you. Or if you stare at me and I raise my right hand - that could mean I am interested in talking some more.

If only...Happy Labor Day Loves!

Friday, August 31, 2007

Ask Diva Bugs - Drink Options for the "Others"

Diva Darling DS asks: When I go out with friends I want to look sophisticated but find that hard to do while holding a plastic or regular water glass with soda and a big straw. What would you suggest I order to be able to seem more sophisticated?

Diva Bugs says: Hon, picture this moment: Its Saturday and I am hanging out with friends. My hair pulled back in a ponytail, long black dress with plunging neckline, cute gold sandals and a Diva Bugs purse! Divine. Ummm... I digress. We order drinks I choose a shirley temple - all are amused. No Cosmo, no french martini ... my usual favs. Just a reg'lar ole shirley temple. No frills, no lemon twist. Nothing special. Having a diva divine moment, I am like whatevs! I look great, feel great .... Diva!

Believe it or not there are not many sophisticated options for dry/sober/non-drinking divas to remain and look en vogue and not naive. Here is a list I was able to compile from informative webpages and some I have made up ... :)

Shirley Temple: ginger ale or Sprite, grenadine and lemon juice, topped with a maraschino cherry. Ask for a martini glass. Don't forget to smile while doing this....:)

Safe Sex on the Beach: cranberry juice, grapefruit juice, peach nectar

Daiquiris or Margaritas (say "hold the alcohol please"). Saying Virgin is so passe!

I have also found that a sophisticated woman knows exactly what she wants and is direct in asking for it. One tip to note: ginger ale or sprite work well to brighten up any drink as well as a little garnish on the glass.

So try this ... ummm... lets call it the Diva Twist: "Bartender can you make my favorite drink. I wish I could tell you the name but I always remember what's in it. Ummm... lets see. I think it has 1 part ginger ale or sprite, one part (grapefruit, cranberry, pineapple or orange juice) a splash of lemon juice and a lemon twist in a martini glass. Do you think you can make that?" Say it with confidence... Cheers!

If you order this let me

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