Saturday, January 26, 2013

36. Dinner Parties

The woman shall periodically host dinner (or dessert, or perhaps even wine) parties to enjoy the company of her great friends, embrace the opportunity to meet new people, and to become familiar with the best culinary joints in her town.

Work has me moving every 2-3 months or so, and it's really tough to meet good folks in that short amount of time. advance building my social life (and to maintain my sanity!), I've gotten hip to organizing the kind of events that I'd like to attend.  These low maintenance get-togethers at area restaurants are always casual, and they are designed with the intention of bringing new folks into the fold.

Our first get-together back in November was at a local wine bar, and right after, we had an awesome dinner (to which we invited progressive and highly evolved gentemen). Depending on what's going on, we'll organize them once or maybe twice a month.  Each time, friends bring friends, and we get to connect with new and interesting people. 

Here are some incredibly helpful tools that we use to plan our monthly dinners:
  1. - Best website to help you find the ideal cuisine (and cost!) in your town. 
  2. - I love these templates!  They make planning dinner parties sooooo easy.  All you do is design the invite, load in some e-mail addys, and make reservations at a favorite restaurant. Done!
  3. - This is a great way to meet ladies in your town who have similar interests.  Lots of times, Meet-up groups will convene around dinner, drinks, or coffee.  Take a look at what you can find.
Quick tip - Try to organize your dinner parties on Tuesdays or Thursdays.  That gives folks something to look forward to on otherwise commonly open evenings.  Also, I send a Save-The-Date a few weeks ahead just so it's on the calendar.

Forget cocktail hour - give me good food and good friends anytime!

Friday, January 25, 2013

35. Cleaning Ladies

The woman shall impart tokens of gratitude to other women in the industries of hospitality and facility services who make her life easier and her environs more beautiful.

This law carries special meaning because at a few points in my adult life, I was the cleaning lady, and it meant so much when clients tipped well, shared moments of humour, and sprinkles of encouragement.   

Now that the Residence Inn has become more of a homebase than a weeklong stay, I'm sure to leave great tips - giftcards to Target, a bowl of Lindor chocolates, and a personal thank you note.

This law is inspired by Miss Sandy, one of the facilities managers at work, who always gives the best advice around men, Thanksgiving dinner, and dressing for winters in North Carolina.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

34. Gentleman Friends

The woman shall enjoy, indulge in, and learn from her genuinely platonic friendships with gentleman counterparts.

We love our girlfriends!  However, there is an undeniable value of having male friends that can offer a completely different point of view, insight into priorities that aren't even on our feminine radar, and participation in masculine activities that we'd otherwise prefer not to encourage.

Prime example - I've never been into the techie part of choosing TV's.  Matter of fact, I don't even own a TV (I live in hotels, and that's a totally separate post).  However, spending time with two of the coolest cats I know this past weekend showed me the universe that I've been ignoring.  We watched one of the Transformers movies (was it 2 or 3?), and the 3D imaging on that huge screen was astounding! 

While I'm usually uplifted by a new shade of coral in the OPI nail color line, spending some time bonding with my male buddies (and enjoying the awesome surround sound, too!) showed me a world that's quite different from my own.  Also, since we're not romantically tied, there was no nervousness, flirtation, or unreal expectations - just straight up kickin' it. I think we need more of that in our world.

Thanks for being my buddies, Antoine (soon to be Raleigh, NC) and Peter (Charlotte, NC).

33. Foreign Language Expression

The woman shall master the appropriate pronunciation, execution, and delivery of a cultural term in a foreign language.

While "oy vey" and "Dios mio" have become part of the English vernacular in the US, offering a less recognizable term can add excitement and mystery to any conversation.

Whether your term is adopted from a movie (like the memorable Bomboclat! warned by maid Odessa Montero, played by Gabourey Sidibe in Tower Heist) or taken from your own experience in a foreign country (like how I picked up vaffanculo in Italy - NOT so ladylike!), keep an ear to the ground for ways to express your frustration, jubilation, and thrill in an expression that's not so common.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

32. Perfect Buns

The woman shall master the version of a bun-inspired hair style that suits her taste and activities for the day (or night!).

Prima ballerinas and librarians aren't the only divas who can rock a bun-inspired hairstyle, and no matter your texture,you can rock it in any way you'd like. 

If you're on the shorter side of the height stick, buns can actually add height, and so bun-styles are my go-to for days when I'm rocking flat shoes (or lots of fabric).  That way, my person isn't too overwhelmed by what I'm wearing.

Also, if you're African American like me, buns can be a great style to express your hair texture and natural curl pattern in a really chic way.  Whether your sides have baby curls or are slick like Rick, the sloppy, classy, or edgy bun is a great go-to style.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

31. Major National Celebrations

The woman shall exercise every opportunity to participate in at least one major national occasion or celebratory event in her life.

It's Inauguration 2013 Eve, and I am incredibly excited!!!  Early tomorrow morning, I'll be in the Yellow Section to witness the inauguration ceremony of President Barack Obama.  I was there in 2009, and although I'm not looking forward to the weather, I'll withstand it proudly for POTUS and FLOTUS!

I was wondering whether or not to go, but a few thoughts were shared gently with me:
  1. This is mindblowing US history!  How can I tell my future children that Mommy wasn't on site at a historical event because she was too lazy.cold.tired.a loser? 
  2. There are millions of people who labored, campaigned, and worked to get President Obama in office.  This inauguration is like a great big present for the USA!  How can I not be there to receive it?  Thanks, y'all!!!!!!!
  3. When POTUS looks out as he's being sworn in, he won't see me, but he'll see the millions like me who are grateful for his continued leadership. Glad to be part of the crowd!

Big thanks to Angela (Washington, DC), Deontée (Birmingham, AL), and Terry and Gillian (both of Hilton Head Island, SC) for your awesome commitment.

30. Colonics/Colon Hydrotherapy

The woman shall perform periodic cleanses of her body to ensure proper digestion, frequent bowel movements, unparallelled comfort, and an overall good mood. 

Ladies, we've gotta be frank here and talk openly about our health with each other.  I've battled constipation for years, and I'm a healthy, active 32-year old who guards what goes into her mouth religiously (although I do slip up with smoked mozzererlla and Häagen-Dazs occasionally!). 

A few years ago, a great friend of mine told me how revolutionary a colonic treatment had been for her.  She described her condition before the colonic - difficulty with doing #2 on a frequent basis, small and hard nuggets when she did go, and a slightly swollen tummy. After the treatment, she said she felt so much better, so I gave it a shot and have been a solid supporter ever since.

A tip for the timid - be sure to ask if a woman or man will be working with you. In every clinic, I've been treated by a woman, and so I was surprised when I discovered a man would be handling my recent colonic. My gynecologist is a guy, so I figured I should go for it. I did, and it was just great. 

I now try to get colonics monthly.  Whenever there are deals on LivingSocial or Groupon, I scoop them up!  Also, I try to buy them in packages (they're a lot cheaper:)

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