bags, beauty, Fashion, hair, haircare, handbags, makeup, personal style, shoes, skincare, Travel

The Trip

On the way to Newark airport in a Lyft because the airport shuttle never came.

I started planning my trip back in July. i booked the airline, hotel and tours then went about my business, praying every day that there wouldn’t be another lockdown. Luckily there was just a travel restriction, but I got vaccinated earlier this year and I have consistently tested negative. I was still nervous that the whole thing would fall through. Once it got down to the last 7 days before the trip, I could get excited. I had a whole plan and now it was coming true.

I decided to pack a capsule wardrobe in black, with a white maxidress to go to the country in. I took my new plaid shacket for cold airports and to use as a blanket. My wardrobe consisted of:

  1. Uniqlo tshirt dress, $20, to travel in. Doubled as nightgown.
  2. Laundry by Shelli Segal tshirt minidress with pockets, on sale for $11.
  3. Banana Republic shirtdress with pockets, $55.
  4. Know One Cares white tiered maxidress, $34
  5. Eleven Paris sheer cotton tshirt, fashion internship perk
  6. Primark leggings, $3
  7. Thrifted black footless tights, $1
  8. RFID money belt, $16.95

I ended up adding the 10 euro floral maxidress on the way to the hotel, so I wore the white dress on an evening excursion.


This was how I did luggage. To travel I packed a Rebecca Minkoff tote bag ($40, sample sale) with a folded L.L. Bean camo duffel bag that i got free from another blogger at an event 6 years ago. The tiny wardrobe was packed in a ziplock bag, and I painted a little Street Level handbag (I think it was $20, I got it from C21) to use for my camera and plug adaptors, hand sanitizer, etc. I don’t like having to check anything. I was only staying four days, and I knew I was going to shop so had an empty bag ready.

Unfortunately the Minkoff bag gave up on the way to the hotel. The strap couldn’t handle the pressure. I swapped it out for a cheap tan faux leather bag that I bought in the metro with the dress. Tbh, I bought five dresses and this bag for 50 euro!

I will admit to a lot of toiletries, though. But I have a two Le Sac pouches from a blogger event at Caravan Style Studio ages ago. I took Herbivore Botanicals bakuchiol and Phoenix face oil. I bought Mario Badescu skincare and deodorant from Nordstrom Rack (I love NR), two amazing Bastide fragrances, and the new MAC items from my makeover. I got all the way there and realized that I’d forgotten toothbrush and toothpaste, do I got this awesome Botot brand at a Parisian pharmacy. I also got some Weleda body wash, which was confiscated on the way home.

I was reckless for buying it, and I only got to use it twice🤷🏿‍♀️

The finishing touch was getting faux locs. I love my hair, but I wanted a completely new, no stress, look. I bought a bonnet to protect them at night, and I admit to using Mario Badescu rosewater facial spray and a few drops of face oil to moisturize my scalp. I got new black and gold framed glasses from Zeelol, with fun costume jewelry from my favorite place (Nordstrom Rack), plus my fave Timex watch.

Oh, and these sweet Converse CX low tops, $70, with clear rubber toe detail and orange rubber soles. It turns out that Converse all stars are pretty popular in Paris. I saw so many different iterations! And they were comfortable for all the stair climbing and walking that I did for my whole trip. I didn’t stop moving from the moment I left my apartment in New York. It was a whole marathon.

Next time, we’ll take a trip to the Louvres.

art, Fashion, Travel

La Vacance (part 2)

I let somebody take my photo at Giverny and it could have been better. Like let me put my bag down and get my angles! But whatever.

Three days back and still a mess. I am still not properly unpacked, my bed is half made. I didn’t get it together to make a proper dinner until yesterday, and now I will be eating jollof inspired saucy rice with chicken deep into next year because guess who used three cups of rice for no reason?

Me. I made a massive pot of rice.

Anyway, I didn’t want to leave my blog empty until next Saturday, so here are some photos from my day tour to Giverny to see the home and gardens of Claude Monet.

But first, this is the first floral dress that I’ve ever liked enough to wear. Long dresses are commonplace on the stylish streets of Paris, and the floral was to honor the theme of this viator booked tour of the countryside. I loved wearing this dress. It felt very fresh and feminine.


I’m going to work on an outline for next week’s post and actually post it on Saturday. I learned a lot, every day was a revelation.

A tout a l’heure!

lifestyle, Travel

The Ski Trip

Last January I went on a ski trip to Vermont. I’ve never been skiing in my life. I really just wanted to know once and for all what people do in these lodges. What even is skiing? Is it fun and can I actually do it? This was the first time in years that I had a clump of disposable income, so I signed up for a group trip, bought goggles, snow pants and gloves, and took off for a powdery weekend.

We left the snow free streets of Manhattan and rolled into -35 degree weather and snowdrifts as high as your hips. It was colder than Chicago, where I remember slowly becoming acclimated to freezing cold weather over the course of the 8 years that I spent there. This was a whole new ballgame. I became very grateful for the big gloves that I bought online from Dick’s Sporting Goods.

I have never seen so much snow in my life.

I spent the weekend realizing that I don’t like skiing. I took a lesson, and there was a point where it was starting to click. I managed to ski down a hill with my classmates and even executed what felt like a graceful turn around a corner. But the experience was nerve wracking for me. I went on a ski lift for the first and last time, hating the fact that I was on a little seat dangling in the breeze with nothing holding me in. Then you have to steel your nerves when you jump off at the end.

A guy in my group tried to help me, but tbh, I really just wanted to stop before I broke something. The final straw was getting a good speed going then panicking because kids were skiing in front of me, falling down, but landing in such a way that my feet remained clipped to my skis as I slid down a mountain on my back getting snow up my nose.

The next day I went souvenir shopping.I was not about to risk dying just because sliding down a hill in an inner tube sounds fun. And I wasn’t going snowshoeing, either. The whole adventure was kind of fizzling out simply because I realized pretty quickly that this type of thing is better if you’ve been raised doing it, so that you feel excited about hitting the slopes rather than annoyed and frightened.

The takeaway is that I went somewhere new and tried something that I had no familiarity with. I finally learned how it feels to ski, and now I know that those ski boots make you feel like a transformer. I know what it feels like to take the Moover by myself into town because I was the only black woman in the group and I didn’t really click with the other women. I know what it’s like to possibly be the only black woman on a bigass hill surrounded by mostly white people zipping around with sticks on their feet. A different person might have thrown themselves in and made friends, but then this would be a post about the friends I met while skiing.

Was it horrible? No! I definitely got my money’s worth. Tons of snow, I went through the whole ski boot fitting and ski renting procedure, and now my jacket has a crumpled ski lift ticket dangling from it. I tromped around in the freezing cold and didn’t die. And I have officially been to Vermont.

Winning.

The snow was beautiful, the hotel was snug and perfectly New England in decor. I still carry the moose keychain around every day. I brought back maple candy for all of my co-workers. After this I did my visual merchandising class, my javascript class and my fashion internship. It was the first step on a path towards a more enlightened adulthood. I might try crosscountry skiing next, though. No hills and a clear objective may be better for me, and I’ll get to wear my snowpants.

2020 is coming in a few hours, and I’m mostly satisfied with how the year went, even though it took a sudden hard turn in the middle. I am not living the same life that I was when I went on this trip. I think I had some growth and got some clarity, but I still have a list of things that I want to learn and do. Right now I’m chilling at home with some candles,thinking about my goals and intentions for the year and being grateful that everything ended up ok.

Here’s to a happy and healthy new year to anyone reading this.Take good care of yourself and do everything you can to make good decisions in the coming months. Make realistic resolutions, and be flexible about them.

Good luck!

SEBMarketBK/Faith

adventures, beach, black women, Fashion, food, self confidence, Travel

The Hamptons

Yup.

One time, last summer, I saw an ad on meetup for someone looking to go to the Hamptons. I met with the person for drinks, made a whole plan…and they bailed. Supposedly you can only go to the Hamptons when it’s sunny. Apparently I was supposed to change my plan because things weren’t perfect for her.

But I had my jitney ticket , so… I went. Welcome to my solo trip to Montauk.

The journey.

This is the beach. It was basically empty because the lightest rain was falling. Not even a real rainshower, just barely a mist. So I got to finally experience the beach in Montauk without a massive crowd. Introvert paradise.

I had some food. I enjoyed not having to wait on a long line, fight for a table or wait a long time for my meal. I just sat there eating and watching boats go by with no stress.

You know what this is. You’ve watched Kid Gorgeous. You know the joke.

Then I took the LIRR home.

The thing I hate the most about people is when they just leave you hanging after gassing you up. At the end of the day, it’s not up to anyone to decide how your time is going to be spent. If someone bails on your plans, don’t stay home and sulk. Go out and do what you were planning (unless you desperately need two people, but most plans can shrink to a solo capacity if needed).

This wasn’t easy for me at all. I’ve never been to Montauk and as a black woman, it can be seriously intimidating traveling alone. But I went and I lived.

I lived. And I bought this tshirt.

See you next time!

Faith/SEB Market BK

Fashion, Photography, Sassy Ethnic Bohemian, Style, Travel, Weekly Photo Challenge

Weekly Photo Challenge: Zig Zag (in Xilitla)

I was going to submit a fashion photo for the Weekly Photo Contest, but then I remembered that trip to Mexico… in 2008 I read a story about the sculpture garden, Las Pozas in Xilitla, Mexico. They said that the jungle was taking it over, and that it was falling into disrepair. Created by sculptor Edward James, it was a wonderland of twisting shapes, a thoroughly surrealist vision. My mission became clear- I HAD to go see it. I forced an ex-boyfriend into tagging along ( http://www.sheknows.com/living/articles/1023367/how-to-plan-a-safe-mexico-vacation) and I grabbed my Pentax K-1000, and went for it.

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No digital, all film- adventure! Even getting there was a zigzag- since I took a plane to Mexico City, then a plane to Tampico, then a bus to Xilitla, then a cab to Las Pozas

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 I mean, Cancun? cabo? Nah. I went in September, which is the Off Season. There was no one around but the natives of the area. And it was stunningly, heartbreakingly beautiful 02490014bw02490024

I even did a travel issue of my online zine, theMAGAZINE(ok) just so that I could write and show off my photos of Las Pozas:

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Never stick to the straight and narrow. Head left when everyone goes right, and you’ll see things that are wonderful. 

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