skin care

a&e ointment, cerave, dry skin, face, facial, life, moisturizer, skin, skin care, skin care regimen, skin regimen, sun damage, sun damaged skin, What I'm..., winter skin

Here's the thing, I'm not one to give beauty, fashion, or… any other kind of advice that would help someone look better. Not my thing. BUT, I had a bit of a struggle with dry skin when winter hit this year. I've been able to figure it out, with help of course, and I thought I would share in case there are others stuggling with their dry skin too.

Last year I spouted my undying love for Burt's Bees. While this love has not waned at all, I have an undisputable infatuation for the stuff, the cream I used last winter was just not cutting it this year.

I don't think this year is particularly more arid than last year, though the amount of precipitation has been measurably less, but I do believe that all my sun exposure during the summer months contributed to the discomfort of my dry skin.

A few weeks ago I came to a last resort decision, as no amount of face cream or thick hand lotion was quenching my skin's thirst. I smeared on a thin layer of A & E Ointment. Yep. Diaper rash ointment. On my face. But y'know, I don't even care because it worked wonderfully. So much so, my skin has healed up with no residual redness, itching, or dry patches. Yay!

While in Idaho for the Christmas holiday I visited with my newly licensed esthetician sister. She pulled some tricks out of her bag to help my sad but improving skin.  After a wonderful cleanse and REALLY good moisturizer, the next night we exfoliated with papaya enzyme cleanser (heavenly and really freaky cool).  She sent me home with a heavy moisturizer recomendation and when I found it at Target, I used my 15% off discount and snatched it up.

I've been addicted ever since.

So with A & D ointment at night, and CeraVe in the morning, coupled with a good exfoliation at least once a week, my skin feels, and looks, great.

And really, I feel so much better about my skin that I've showed up to work without makeup. At which point my boss proceeds to tell me I look like a 12 year old.

And that is not something I should complain about.

music monday

authentic, monday, music, music monday, What I'm...

“What are you listening to right now?”


I frequently ask people this question.  I get all kinds of responses.  And I love it. There is a lot that can be learned about peopleby the music they listen to. 

Frequently the music I choose is about the beat, the lyrics, or the sentiment expressed, and it can be as simple as what sounds good at that moment.

When I'm looking for a new artist or an addition for my meager collection, I usually ask those around me what they are listening to. Or I'll check into my favorite blog and find out what they are listening to. Rarely do I check out iTunes for the most popular stuff. I'd rather find a new artist through someone I care about.

I really enjoy the artists that are authentic to themselves and their art. Then the music becomes more than just sounds coming through the speakers, and more about the lyrics and sentiment expressed. 

It's impossible for me to tell you what my favorite artist or band is. There are so many that I thoroughly enjoy. And it depends on so many factors, it's nearly impossible for me to pick a favorite. A more accurate question is to ask what I'm listening to right now. 

And as I'm writing this entry? It's She & Him, A Very She & Him Christmas

The artists on rotation at the moment? Drake and Beyonce

So here's the question: what are you listening to today?

laughter is contagious

cheerful, fun, inspirations, laughing yoga, laughter, life, What I'm..., Yoga

Have you heard of Laughter Yoga?  A friend told me about it a couple years ago and I've been intrigued ever since.  I love to laugh (who doesn't really) and I'm plagued with an infectious snort.  What can I say?  It's an endearing trait.


Anyway, I noticed on my school page that the college was offering an hour long introduction to Laughter Yoga.  I'm trying new things so… I went.  

Turns out, it's actually a studied, developed, and practiced… thing.  And it's more complicated than people standing in a circle laughing at each other.  Who knew?  We all know laughter is good for the mind, body, and soul.  Apparently, the body cannot tell the difference between real laughter and fake laughter.  Huh.

The majority of the time is spent fake laughing.  Which, in all honesty, feels really weird.  But once I was able to concentrate on the sound I was supposed to make, as opposed to if I really thought whatever was going on was funny, it became much easier.  

And really, the fake laughter often times became real laughter.  Whether I was laughing at the absurdity of it all, or the person next to me snorted, or the girl across the way was having trouble breathing, I was laughing for realsies.  We spent the hour laughing at gibberish conversations, doing the pinky dance, and imitating sounds in laughter.

And it was so much fun.  I left the class feeling more energized and happy and with more bounce in my already cheery step.  

So I suggest it.  If you see a class in your area give it a try.  You might be surprised.

Pride Festival 2011

I went outside, service, Utah Pride Center, Utah Pride Festival, volunteer, What I'm...


This last weekend in Salt Lake City was the Pride Festival.  I had been wanting to volunteer at an event or festival this year, when summer came around and I was ready to do it, the Pride Festival was the next one on the schedule.  And they needed volunteers.  So I filled out the application, got in contact with the coordinator, and was assigned a shift to work.

I was supposed to work Sunday afternoon from 4:30 to 7:30.  I checked in at the volunteer tent at 4, they got me in touch with the fork lift operator I would be assisting, and we waited for our work to start.  And we kept waiting.  And waiting.  We waited until 6:30.  You see, our part of the work was supporting the take down efforts of the group, which doesn't happen until the festival is over… at 7:00.

Since I didn't have anywhere else to be I let him know I was there to work as long as there was work for me to do.  So after the festival ended, the grounds were cleared, we finally got to work.  And we worked.  And worked.  We moved pallets and metal racks around the festival grounds for the volunteers to stack the tables and chairs on.  We consolidated the half full pallets to make room for more tables and chairs.  We moved dumpsters.  We stacked and unstacked pallets.  We emptied ice coolers.  We worked and worked.

About 11pm I realized I was not hearing the trains anymore.  Which was a problem since I had taken trax downtown so I wouldn't have to fight parking.  And now the trains weren't running.  I was kinda stuck downtown with no vehicle to get home.  I was able to call a friend who came to get me in the middle of the night.  Life saver.

I worked until about 12:15 when my ride home arrived to save me.  After rolling into my apartment just before 1 am, I slept like a log.  For about 4 1/2 hours until I had to be up to go to work.  The next few days have proved to be long and trying.  But I'm making it.

While the experience turned out to be a bit different than I expected, I'm so glad I did it.  I worked alongside some people I would not have other wise met.  They had a quirky sense of humor, they worked hard, and they had fun while they did it.  My kind of people. 

I found the Pride Festival to be quite the party.  It was loud, fun, and a celebration of individuality and acceptance.  And while I don't share their lifestyle choices, I felt accepted and appreciated for who I am, why I was there, and celebrated for my differences.  Next year I may not attend the Pride Festival, either as a patron or a volunteer, but I'm certainly glad I went this year.

This year was more attended than last year, over 25,000 people came through during the 2 day festival.  

Utah Pride Festival 2011

Utah Pride Center

on being a vegetarian

diet, eat, eating, Good Eats, red meat, vegetarian, What I'm...

To be honest: I don't think it's for me.


I realized this during lunch one day while poking at the yummy salad in front of me.  It was convenient, cheap, and satisfying.  I probably would have gotten it even if I wasn't trying to master a meat-free menu.  Except that I had been craving fried chicken.  For a couple days.  And I had gotten a salad.  

And then I realized that the lettuce I was eating was not good at all and was actually lettuce-cicles.  Yep.  Frozen lettuce.  Eew.  And so not satisfying.  And really gross.  And suddenly I was wishing for fried chicken.  So warm and greasy and… satisfying.

Just like any kind of diet or restriction on the food I am “allowed” to eat, cutting out meat completely from my diet has proven to be futile.  Just like cutting out desert, strawberries, and red meat.  And anything fried.

Why?  Because I like to eat.  I like BBQ, sushi, hamburgers, pasta, and tacos.  I like it smothered, cheesy, grilled, and fried.  Veggies, fruit, meat, and deserts.  I don't discriminate. 

I also believe in moderation in all things.  So yes, I eat ice cream when I want to.  I just don't eat the whole pint in one sitting.  Or the whole bag of beef jerky in one day.  I get a small pizza instead of the one that will feed me for 3 meals.  

Cutting out red meat from my diet started 2+ years ago.  I noticed that I functioned better long term without the red meat.  But I miss it.  And I crave it sometimes.  So when I do crave it, I go out and make the purchase worth it with a good burger or indulging my weakness for beef jerky. And every time, it's so worth it.

But in the mean time I've discovered pork and haven't missed the beef much at all. It surprises me how easy it is to just make a different choice.

I think that maybe this no-meat-at-all stint was set to fail from the beginning.  To cut out a part of my diet just because I can?  Hmmm.  It seems to be not such a good reason for me.  For my health? For ideals? Principles?  Sure.  But even then, I'm allergic to strawberries, but certainly not enough to keep me from eating myself sick every summer.

Maybe what this is really telling me has nothing to do with my eating habits. Maybe it's more about a lack of willpower.  Or self-control.  Or something.  But I don't seem to have an issue with doing something because it's the right something to do.  So I don't think that's it either.

Maybe it really is all about the food.  And how much I love it.


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