Sunday, April 6, 2014

FAUX SCONCES USING PAPER TOWEL ROLLS




Greetings, Ladies and Gents!! I pray all is well..
Ok, here is an awesome DIY project that's under $8. My inspiration for these was my longing to have some wall art lighting, but to incorporate true sconces would entail electrical wiring and the Frugal Frieda in me put my mind into action as to how to achieve the look I wanted for little money. So, I finally thought of an awesome way to get what I wanted using basic items I had around the house. Stay tuned below for the details.

WHAT I USED:

 Paper Towel and Toilet Paper rolls. This will give the varying sizes I used to create the art.
I had these spray paint colors on hand and to achieve the metal look I wanted, I layered all three.
  • Blue Lagoon
  • Metallic Gold
  • Gloss Black


  • A hot glue gun will also be handy for securing the pieces.
  • To adhere the sconce to the wall, I used adhesive dots.



THE HOW TO:

  • I layered the colors first beginning with the base color of the Blue Lagoon, then the metallic gold, then the black to give it a rusted metal look.
  • Once the rolls are dry, I placed the rolls in the manner I wanted the design and used my hot glue gun to secure the pieces together. Be sure to layer your rolls at varying heights to create the layered look. I loved the finished look!! They actually turned out better than expected and look O'Mazing on the wall.. So, go, my fellow DIY artists, create beautiful art. 




THE FINISHED LOOK:







Tuesday, April 1, 2014

LET'S MAKE..SHRIMP N PASTA (GLUTEN FREE)


Greetings, EVeryone!! I hope you're hungry. 
Today's good eats are: Shrimp N Pasta and lightly sauteed Kale w/tomato and red onion.
So, let's dive right into it


INGREDIENTS:
  • WILD CAUGHT SHRIMP or the freshest shrimp possible (1 lb)
  • GLUTEN FREE PASTA or pasta of your choice.
  • FRESH KALE (as much as you like)
  • TOMATO (at least 6)
  • RED ONION (1 rough chopped)
  • BELL PEPPER (1, diced)
  • FRESH BASIL (handful, rough chopped)
  • FRESH GARLIC (3 bulbs diced)
  • SEA SALT (to taste)
  • FRESH GROUND PEPPER (to taste)
  • CAPERS (3 table spoons)
  • CAYAN PEPPER (dash)
  • TUMERIC (dash)
  • EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL (5 tbsp)
  • BRAGG'S LIQUID AMINOS
SIDE NOTE..SPICE BRANDS I LOVE

I absolutely LOVE the 'Real Salt' Brand of Sea Salt and Seasoning Salt..They use dried herbs, no preservatives, additives nor MSG..LOVE.. And we purchase our fresh herbs and spices from the Farmer's Market. I simply transferred them to little mason jars and created labels so our cabinets could be organized.




THE NITTY GRITTY...LET'S COOK

Now, before we begin, my husband and I love to cook to some awesome music. Today, my music of choice was Nina Simone 'SinnerMan'..It truly put me into the groove and I wanted to put all my love into this dish. The music was perfect as the wonderful aroma seduced our senses.  

 In a medium sauce pan, heat 3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil and add your onion, garlic, green pepper and capers and allow to saute for about 3-5 minutes. The blend of items are an o'mazing burst of flavor. The surprise of the capers truly bring out the other flavors of the herbs and spices.
Bring a nice sized pot of water to boil for your pasta. Add a dash of sea salt and 1 tbsp of Olive Oil to the water. Once your water is boiling, add your pasta and allow to fully cook until tender.

Add your shrimp and cook until pink, then add your fresh basil and tomato.  

















The tomatoes will begin to soften and produce a natural sauce making the wonderful topping for the pasta. Use a fork or your hands to mash up the tomatoes, allowing it to have remains of slight chunks combined with the sauce.
For the Kale: In a medium sauce pan, heat 2 tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, add your Kale and allow to lightly saute. Add your onion and tomato, a dash of Bragg's Liquid Aminos to taste.










SERVE HOT AND ENJOY!!

Grab a bottle of Cabernet or a glass of Reisling or Pinot Grigio and allow the O'Mazing flavors burst in your mouth. Enjoy











Monday, March 31, 2014

USING HEAT..DAY 2 (SLEEPING AND WORKING OUT WITH STRAIGHT HAIR)


Greetings, Everyone!! Ok, so it's Day 2 and I wanted to stop in and note how I kept my hair in tact while sleeping and even working out. Again, I try to take note of the questions asked so I can be mindful of how I care for my hair in its straightened state and make mention. Keep in mind, everyone may experience different results and may use different methods, this is what is working for me and because of that, I'm excited to share. So, let's get to it!!

HOW I PROTECTED AT NIGHT

MOISTURIZING: To give my hair a dab of moisture, I separated my hair into two sections then I applied a little of my Natty Creme to each section. This was perfect because it had a nice blend of water, butters and oils. You can use a moisturizing cream of your choice



















Once I moisturized my hair, on one section at a time, I single twisted my hair and coiled into a bantu/bun. Then secured with a small goody band. I ended up with two Princess Laia buns.








I made sure to moisturize my edges











And my nape and voila!











Once my hair was moisturized and buns in place, I tied a 100% silk scarf around to secure everything. ( I purchased this from Marshalls a few years back. Be sure you use a good fabric, such as silk or satin.








I then placed my Charmeuse Satin Bonnet from EboniCurls and headed to bed. I must say, this bonnet is amazing for helping to keep moisture into the hair.










Working Out...So, because my hair is straightened, I still wanted to get my workout in and figured since my hair was nicely secured, I could simply remove the Ebonnet bonnet and workout with my hair still secure from the satin scarf. What I have found is when the hair is bonded together, it holds on to moisture better and it also helps to keep my hair in place after a workout. Spin Bike here I come!!



Voila!! After my workout and showering, I took my hair down once it was dry from the workout and steam from the shower and this is what I got. My hair was extremely soft, bouncy and had a hint of a body wave from being in the buns.I really didn't have to do much to it, but shake and go. If your hair is shorter, simply wrap the hair around your head and secure with a silk or satin scarf. What I found is that the tight bantu buns helped to keep my hair stretched as well. Hope this helps..Have a Happy Natty Day!




THE RESULTS




Sunday, March 30, 2014

FROM KINKY COILY TO STRAIGHT..LIGHT FLAT IRONING MY NATURAL HAIR


Greetings, Everyone!!! I pray all is well with you and your wonderful household. 
Ahhh, the versatility of natural hair...Ok, so I decided to do a light blow out and flat iron on my tresses. Now, I've only used heat in my 4th month post BC and a little on my bang in 2012 as a demonstration on how to use heat properly on natural hair. For my complete post on the 'Do's and Don't s on Using Heat', click here . So, it's been quite awhile since the ole gal has had fire to the flame. 

I truly wanted to experiment with straight hair this week because as a page operator, I receive questions in regards to caring for natural hair while flat ironed or straightened. And, honestly, I love to speak by experience. So, this week, I want to document how I cared for my tresses while flat ironed: through workout, protecting at night, moisturizing, detangling, you know, the good stuff that helps keep our hair healthy. Now, I will say, I don't think excessive use of heat is a great go, simply because the more heat applied over and over gradually breaks down the protein bond in the hair and overtime, could potentially prevent the hair from reverting back to its normal curly, kinky or coily texture. Excessive heat use can also aid in dryness. So, with everything, I definitely encourage moderation. 

MY REGIMEN AND PRODUCTS USED ON DAY 1:







  • Twist: Once my hair was 70-80% dry, I placed in twists to prep for blow drying and flat ironing the next day.  I had 16 total twists. 

THE METHOD: DAY 2

On Hair that was completely dry, working one twist at a time, I untwist, dampen just a little using my Natty ACV Hair & Scalp Mist then applied my Natty Butter to lock in the moisture. This helped with retaining more moisture into my hair to avoid dryness. Using a paddle brush, I detangled and Blow dried on medium heat, low setting. Taking smaller sections, I applied a little Natty Butter as my heat protectant then I proceeded to flat iron on temp setting of 325. Hair will burn at a temp of 450 degrees and above, so please be mindful. And because I did not want to risk burning or damaging my hair, I kept the heat setting low for a light flat iron. This allowed my hair to maintain the fullness that I achieved. I repeated until my entire head was done. Took about 3.5 - 4 hours for the entire process (this included resting for 3 minutes..hey, I'm not used to taking this much time on my hair unless I'm mini twisting my hair, which takes a loooonnnngggg time). I also trimmed about 2.5 inches off of my hair to rid my hair of dead ends. I didn't shape my hair or anything, for some reason, my hair grows out in a shaped mode all on its own. 

THE RESULTS: I DO LOVE IT!!












Tuesday, March 25, 2014

KEEPING IT SIMPLE..OUR NATTY REGIMEN FOR OUR NATTY KIDS




Greetings, Everyone!! I pray all is well..Now, here is one question I receive lots lots lots of times over..'How do I care for my kiddies' tresses?' Now, I'm a firm believer in using natural healthy products with the understanding that ingredients can seep into our pores and into our blood system creating toxin buildup in our bodies that can create adverse effects sooner or later. With that being said, the use of healthy products are not all that's detailed in how I care for my kids' hair..oh, yea, we have 4 of the wittle waskally wascals. And with a busy life, I try not to spend loads of time on hair. With helping to retain length, I find that simplicity is best. Keep the scalp clean, no tight ponytails, no tension on the edges, keep the edges and ends moisturized and sealed, easy with the styling tools ( I mostly finger detangle). And, I keep a simple consistent regimen that is very similar to my own: Cleanse, Condition, Moisturize, Seal. Same exact products that I use are the exact same products used on all 4 of our kids and my hubby as well. Yea, they're gentle enough yet beast enough to do what they need to do from the youngest coily coil to the most mature mass of locs. So, with that said, here is how I maintain my little ones' hair.

THE PICTORIAL STEP BY STEP





STEP 1-2 DIVIDE, CONQUER AND CLEANSE

Place hair into 3, 4 or more sections to minimize the hair re-tangling and to lessen wash time. Working one section at a time, I apply a dime sized amount of the Dudu Osum shampoo and massage in focusing on her scalp to aid in removing product buildup, dirt and debris. The shampoo softens her hair allowing me to gently finger detangle. Rinse and repeat on the next section

STEP 3-4 DEEP CONDITION

Soak up the excess water with an old T-shirt which minimizes frizz and friction and apply our Natty Cupuacu (pronounced coo-poo-wah-soo)and Rhassoul Deep Conditioner. I work through and lightly finger comb through, working one section at a time. Repeat on each section and allow to sit for 5-10 minutes while enjoying bath time. Rinse and soak up excess water with old t-shirt.

STEP 5 PROTECT AND APPLY THE LEAVE IN

 I spray our Natty ACV Hair & Scalp Mist onto her hair and scalp helping to close her cuticle and keep her scalp protected from bacteria, fungi and other contaminants. Shampoos are formulated at higher pH levels in order to effectively cleanse the hair properly by lifting the cuticles. After cleansing, it is important to close the cuticle on the hair which help protect the hair follicle as well as minimize frizz and impart shine, this is where the Scalp Mist and Natty Moist come into play. I then add our Natty Moist leave in conditioner to her hair. and throughly finger it through.

STEP 6 SEAL/LOCK IN THE MOISTURE

 I Seal/Lock in the moisture by applying Natty Butter to my hand, rubbing it down and applying to her moisturized hair and style as desired. I normally place her hair in buns or simple twists or plaits as low manipulation styles.

STEP 7 ACCESSORIZE..SMOOCHES..ENJOY!

 Add accessories of your choice and kiss, kiss, kiss your little one and enjoy!

** For the scoop on how I refresh our little ones' hair, please click HERE

As always, I hope this helps..Have a Happy Natty Day!!

Monday, March 24, 2014

TWIST OUT..MY STEP BY STEP ON MOISTURIZING AND PROLONGING



Greetings everyone!! Now I know everyone has their method of how they rock their twist out, but I wanted to share my step by step of how I achieve my twist out.

STEP 1: SELECT YOUR PRODUCTS OF 

CHOICE:

STEP 1: I use 2 products: a moisturizer (my Natty Moist or my Natty ACV Hair & Scalp Mist) and a sealant to LOCK in the moisture (my Natty Butter). Key note: In order to achieve a properly moisturized style, a water based product, such as a leave in conditioner, moisturizing styling cream, a moisturizing mist or plain water should be applied FIRST. Then in order to prevent the water from escaping, a butter or oil should be applied to seal/lock in the moisture.











STEP 2: WAYS TO ACHIEVE: 


ON DRY HAIR 

ON SLIGHTLY DAMP HAIR












ON WET HAIR

NOTE: if I am twisting on freshly washed hair, I place an old tshirt on my hair to absorb the excess water until my hair is about 75-80% dry. This ensures my twists will be thoroughly dry when I untwist. Using an old tshirt minimizes frizz and friction that comes when using bath towels. 



STEP 3: MOISTURIZE AND SEAL

Place hair into sections to make the process easier. Take a small, medium or large section of hair (depending on the size you want your twists to be) and apply a generous amount of your moisturizer. Then apply your sealant of choice to lock in the moisture. I prefer natural butters or natural pomades to help the hair not only lock in moisture but also clump the hair together to create a smooth twist and twist out. To achieve more defined roots, I will begin by braiding the top portion of the section then half way down begin twisting the remaining section.



STEP 4: THE METHOD

 I always make sure my hair is thoroughly moisturized so you may see some of the moisturizer on my twists as I'm twisting, which my hair will nicely absorb ensuring moisturized hair. I twist very tightly to create a sort of memory foam effect so when I untwist the curls are super defined and last for quite awhile. I make sure to MOISTURIZE my ends and edges especially to ensure they are healthy. I use the same moisture and seal technique on my ends and edges, that I use for my twists.

STEP 5: THE TAKE DOWN

Once my twists are completely dry, I apply a little Natty Butter or my pomade to my hands then proceed to unravel my twists. Applying the butter or pomade helps to minimize frizz and give hair a nice sheen.













STEP 6: Rock it out and Enjoy!









Key notes: I don't use a ton of products for any style. Understanding moisture is the key and making sure to seal/lock in the moisture with a butter oil or pomade. When the hair is properly moisturized, you may not have to remoisturize for a few days. For me, I do not have to moisturize my hair for 3-4 days. When I need to remoisturize, I will simply moisturize using the products mentioned above, seal in the moisture and retwist if needed. I never retwist each night and only do so when I need to remoisturize. If you feel you are still struggling with dry hair, check out my post on 'Dry Hair' to see what may be the cause. Remember, products alone do not help resolve dry hair, it takes a team of : healthy eating, good water intake, thoroughly clean hair and scalp, regular trimming, understanding your hair's porosity and other things combined to help combat dry hair issues.

At night, I simply pull my hair into a low bun and cover with a silk or satin scarf, pineapple (by placing all of my hair on top of my head into a very loose puff, or simply sleep on my satin scarf. Bunning my hair helps stretch the hair and keeps the hair less frizzy. 

As always, I hope this helps