Miscellaneous - une femme d'un certain âge


Saturday Sunset

As we were parking the car for dinner Saturday night, caught some nice sunset action. #nofilter as the kids say.

It was one of those catching-up-with-myself weekends, lots of errands run, loads of laundry done and very little time sitting down at the computer.

OPI Big Apple Red mani

Ring original design by Wendy Brandes. You can read about it here. Should’ve had another hit of hand lotion before snapping this picture though!

Did manage to slip in for a mani-pedi, first time in weeks. My neighborhood nail salon is Old School…no spa bowls or massage chairs, but the women who work there are very nice (and most have been there for years), the prices are reasonable, they have steady clientele and often all 8 chairs are full. There’s a TV which is always on, but no cable, so we watch one of the three local broadcast stations. On Saturday mornings it’s kids shows, and Saturday afternoons, that usually means College Sports. Went with OPI Big Apple Red this time for a bit of brightness. A regular polish manicure usually lasts me just a few days; once it starts to chip I remove the whole shebang. I don’t have the time or patience to maintain polish on my fingers, but enjoy while it lasts.

We had a lovely dinner Saturday night at a newish place not too far from us, called The Wallace. (Angelenos take note: this one’s worth making a reservation.) Very, very good food in the “small plates” format. It’s perfect for the two of us, as neither of us can stomach big heavy meals anymore. The wine list looked interesting, but I was intrigued by the beers and enjoyed a nice ale on tap, served blissfully at room temperature. We’ll definitely be going back…there was so much on the menu we wanted to try and the few dishes we did sample were excellent. The fresh oysters were out of this world, as was the jar of duck rillettes.

Bobbi Brown brow shaper

A friend of mine loves this Bobbi Brown brow shaper and recommended it when we spoke last week. I stopped by Nordstrom and tried it out, and yes it’s quite good, especially if you want a soft and natural look. If your brows are very sparse like mine you can use over a bit of pencil or powder for a stronger brow or alone for a more natural look and it holds everything in place nicely (if you have brows with a mind of their own, you might want to try this). Also can be used as a root touch up on hair in between colorings.

I’m narrowing down my search for a spinner suitcase, and will have a side-by-side comparison of the two front-runners on Wednesday, so do check back. I’ve been receiving requests for capsule wardrobe suggestions for various destinations and climates, and am working on those too.

Did you do anything fun or special over the weekend?

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  1. Jill
    February 10, 2014 / 5:50 am

    What a great ring by Wendy! I love that you wore it with red nail polish. I’m showing pale blue polish, a la Marie Antoinette, over at my blog today. I’m with you–the minute polish starts to chip it’s bye-bye time. We watched a lot of Olympic coverage this weekend because it just won’t stop snowing in NYC. Ugh. XO, Jill

  2. Susan
    February 10, 2014 / 6:08 am

    Have you discovered gel manicures/nail polish? Now my polish lasts for at least two weeks. Best of all, you can walk out of the nail salon with confidence that your polish is totally dry and hardened, having no fear that you will ruin it just driving home. I’ve been getting gel manicures for a couple of years now and will never go back. While they cost a bit more, the added value is definitely there. Right now, my polish is two weeks old and still looks perfect with the exception that my nails have grown a bit. Since I do an almost clear polish, even that doesn’t show.

  3. adriennerichlife
    February 10, 2014 / 6:09 am

    I love Big Apple…a great red. I am in the market for a new brow filler. I have a Giorgio Armani pencil I like but I am starting to need something with better coverage. Where are all my eyebrow hairs going??
    Saturday night, we had our annual crab feed at the fire department where my husband is chief. It was pouring rain so I wore rain boots while bartending at the event. On your feet for 5 hours in rain boots is not a good idea! Sunday was spent writing and cooking with a bit of planking thrown in. Glad to hear you had a low-key weekend! Love that ring of yours. Just stunning!

  4. Enna
    February 10, 2014 / 6:29 am

    Hi there. Love the tone of your blog. Very human. Thanks. I loved your stripped Top review. Maybe you could help us 50ers with TOPS for summer that cover the top arm above the elbow!

  5. February 10, 2014 / 6:31 am

    My brows are becoming so sparse, what on earth is happening? I am now having to pencil in the first few mm’s of them, it’s so annoying.
    That pic is just stunning, you are so so so lucky to live where you do.

  6. February 10, 2014 / 6:57 am

    I can never see too many beautiful sunsets and sunrises…a great way to begin the week…and I really love Wendy’s ring design…particularly with your new manicure…I think I am overdue..thanks for the reminder!

  7. February 10, 2014 / 7:12 am

    First blog I’ve read this morning and I have to say it was the perfect way to start the week….like catching up with a friend. Thanks for the tip on the brow tamer. Mine are both sparse and, as I like to think of them, independent:)

  8. February 10, 2014 / 7:35 am

    Sounds like a good, despite the busy! And your hands look great — the manicure really sets off Wendy’s rings.

  9. Jean
    February 10, 2014 / 7:58 am

    Sometimes thinning brows can be a sign of thyroid trouble, so those of you just noticing it should have that checked, but mostly I think it’s just an aging thing. Aging = hair where you don’t want it and missing where you do want it.

    I went bowling this weekend! I haven’t been bowling in over 30 years. Now that the lanes are smoke free it makes the whole experience much more tolerable. I think I might have scored a smidgen better if my elbows and wrists weren’t already achy from all the incessant snow shoveling and ice chipping I’ve been doing this winter. Bowling was fun and I’d like to do it again before another 30 years go by.

  10. February 10, 2014 / 8:16 am

    I have my brows tinted every 6 weeks and the results are better than the MAC powder I used to use. Pretty quiet weekend around here going to see American Hustle today.

  11. February 10, 2014 / 8:53 am

    Gorgeous ring, Wendy is clever! I had a mani-pedi last time I was in New York and have decided to make it a regular treat. It’s the little things…

  12. Leslie
    February 10, 2014 / 9:14 am

    Love the menu at the Wallace, except for the fact it doesn’t list prices. I’ll have to try it.

  13. DGW
    February 10, 2014 / 9:58 am

    FYI re. 4 spinner wheels vs. 2 round ones, we’ve recently been evaluating both, and finally decided to buy the older 2 wheel version.

    Pros for the spinners:
    1-ease of moving luggage on smooth surfaces, such as an airport floor.
    2-if you’re packed to the extreme, having 4 points of contact could mean that the suitcase doesn’t tip over in the airport. This problem can be avoided by positioning your suitcase facing a wall or something else.

    Cons for the spinner are:
    1-reduction of interior packing space (small, but still….)
    2-for our trip to the UK, those spinner wheels added just enough additional height to a carry-on as to render the suitcase too large to fit into British Airways overhead storage.
    3-many people commented that the traditional wheeled model functioned better on any irregular surface (bricks, cobblestones, sidewalk gaps, etc.). They said the spinner wheels would catch and cause the whole thing to tip over.

    • February 10, 2014 / 3:48 pm

      I’m very interested in that observation, as my wheelie suitcase walks a lot in old cities, either here (central-northern Montréal) or even more at my European destinations, as I rely almost exclusively on public transport and walking.

  14. February 10, 2014 / 10:56 am

    This is great stuff. It not only fills in but colors my gray ones!! I’ve spent the weekend in Vancouver, BC with my daughter, sampling vegan restaurants and seeing American Hustle.

  15. February 10, 2014 / 11:50 am

    I use the Bobbi Brown shaper you are right it is good over a pencil to keep the wayward brows in shape. Not enough on its own for me.

  16. Sandy
    February 10, 2014 / 12:16 pm

    For a lower cost alternative to brow filler and shaper I use Revlon’s Brow magic. A pencil on one end and a gel tube with brush on the other.

  17. Cathy Wong
    February 10, 2014 / 12:45 pm

    What a beautiful sunset photo!!!! (Never mind that it’s snowing here again today!) Your hand/manicure/ring are beautiful-so chic!

  18. Patty
    February 10, 2014 / 1:09 pm

    Ah…sunset and palm trees. I can almost feel the gentle, warm breeze, smell the scent of flowering bushes, and hear the laughter of folks having a cocktail on the patio. Thank you for the photo…it helps this Wisconsinite feel a little summer as the temps continue to dip below zero and the snow just won’t end. However…we do have beautiful sun today which sparkles off the snow. We’ll be in for a glorious sunset tonight.

    Your nails look great. I think polish is just the icing on the cake with a manicure. It’s the pampering and the care of the nail that are really what a manicure is all about. I’ve tried the gel polish and it does last, but I found that it weakened my nails.

  19. February 10, 2014 / 1:47 pm

    I had a catching up with myself weekend too. Your first photo looks like a winter sunset here in the Illawarra just south of Sydney, I love and know that dichotomy of cold pinky orange sky against palm trees. I just googled LA’s latitude, I see we are located exactly the same distance from the equator on the coast.

  20. February 10, 2014 / 5:28 pm

    The Wallace looks great and we’ll definitely give it a try. Nice post, as others have said, like catching up with a friend. Needed a dull weekend, and got one!

  21. Tami C
    February 10, 2014 / 5:41 pm

    Thanks for the recommendation of Maybeline BB cream. I never heard of this. I made the purchase on your recommendation and I love it. Love your blog also!

  22. Katie
    February 10, 2014 / 6:48 pm

    I’m excited to hear about the upcoming travel capsule wardrobes! I will also be in Paris in April, followed by Amsterdam, Barcelona, and Madrid!!

  23. Debra
    February 10, 2014 / 11:17 pm

    Can’t wait to see your travel wardrobe as you always give me great ideas. I’m hoping someday you’ll travel in the warmer months and put together a wardrobe for that; I’m hopeless and always bring more than I should.

    I second the poster above who suggested the gel manicures. I haven’t ever worn color on my nails because it is such a pain, but I tried a gel manicure last month at my daughter’s urging and I’m addicted. I don’t wear a lot of jewelry (usually just wedding rings and watch) and maybe that’s why I get so much pleasure seeing the 10 “jewels” at the end of my fingers. I never imagined that I’d start wearing painted nails at this stage of my life, but I absolutely I love them!

  24. Susan
    February 11, 2014 / 3:39 am

    A comment about gel polish weakening nails. I found this to be true—at first. At first, I alternated a regular polish with a gel for this reason. Then, finally–due to some back to back travel and the need for good looking nails for a longer period of time, I went back to having back to back gel polishes. My nails began looking stronger and I found the gel no longer seemed to be weakening my nails. I was curious–and asked my nail tech (I’ve gone to her for over 15 years now) about this phenomenon. She said that others had reported the same thing. Now, my nails seem stronger than ever. Needless to say, I am not going back to regular polish. The wear of the gel is quite incredible.

  25. February 11, 2014 / 6:56 am

    Your ring is spectacular! I’ve read the story of it over at Wendy’s before, but love seeing it on your hand.

  26. Ellen
    February 11, 2014 / 7:41 am

    I recently bought a brow product called Benitint from Sephora. It goes on with a little spoolie brush, like mascara only smaller. Stays all day and colors the brow hairs that are white now. Thats enough for me so far, as noe of the brow hairs are long or unruly, and coloring the white ones is enough to allow me to avoid pencil. Be sure, if you get a brow product of any sort to get one lighter than you think you should to avoid having them look alarming and phony

  27. February 11, 2014 / 9:39 am

    I have a brow pencil (with an incorporated brush) that is a colour called charcoal, a dark grey. My brows were very black, and my hair has mostly gone silver with dark streaks. My brows are still mostly black, though there are some unruly white hairs. Another form of makeup might be nice, but I can’t find that dark grey tone in many – brown looks wrong, and black is, of course, far too harsh now.

    Do any of these products have a grey tone?

  28. February 12, 2014 / 6:28 am

    For a spinner mini (kind of a BIG laptop bag) I chose Samsonite. I am intrigued by the Bobbi Brown eye brow shaper (I currently love Mac eye brow pencil in Fling but it breaks too much).

  29. Kris
    February 12, 2014 / 3:09 pm

    The ring is *gorgeous*. And the story behind it is great.

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