Material Life Shop in New Orleans

A while ago I read this article on Apartment Therapy:  A Collector's Maximalist New Orleans Home  

Do you see her home?????????  It is sooooooooo gorgeous!  I noticed in the article that she has a shop in New Orleans called Material Life Shop so I went stalked her Instagram feed:  Material_Life_Shop

Everytime since, whenever I was in the city, it was either on a day she wasn't open or she'd already closed for the day.  Today was my lucky day!!!!!!!

The owner, Carla Williams, had the most magnificent energy!  Her shop / gallery is filled with amazing artefacts, art, books, photography, pottery, etc. from Black life.  And when I say the pieces she's curated are amazing?????? THEY ARE AMAZING!!!!!!!  I walked up and down because I didn't want to miss a thing.  AND...if you ask her about a piece?  SHE TELLS YOU THE MOST FASCINATING STORIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Just shares with you things you knew nothing about and now?  You want to know everything about!

Take these two pieces I brought home with me:

They were both created by The Black Potter, Mr. Jim McDowell.  The first one is an ugly face jug and the second one is a whiskey mug.  LOL!  

The jugs were used to mark the graves of slaves and the ugly face was so that it scared away the devil.  Interesting right?  I just thought they were cool.  I'm totally looking forward to visiting this store often so that I can integrate some meaningful art into our home.  

Next time you're in New Orleans, you should go check it out.  Tell her I sent you so I can stay on her good side.  Yall know I have an inquisitive nature so I want to ask her a whole lot of questions whenever I'm there.  LOL!  

Oh...and use the address on her Instagram page.  If you just ask Mr. Google...he doesn't have the new address updated yet.  Yeah...we went to the old location first but we were determined to find it today!

Check this out:


My new FAVORITE thing! OXO Good Grips Soft-Handled Garlic Press

If you're like me, you buy something and use it until it breaks and then you replace it.  You're not out and about thinking to yourself...hey...I need another garlic press even though nothing is wrong with my current garlic press.  It's just not done.

My garlic press broke.  I've probably had it for 20+ years so it had a good, long, life.  So it broke and I went out looking for a new one.

You never think you can improve on things like garlic presses ya know?  They are all pretty basic.  Um...WRONG!  

I got this one:  OXO Good Grips Soft-Handled Garlic Press  

You press the garlic, flip the handle over and it pushes out the skin.  *BLINK*  No...really...*BLINK*  Now...those of you who have garlic presses which do this...I bow down to thee because my life has changed.  I just pressed a while bulb of garlic, three cloves at a time easy peasy.  This is seriously my new favorite thing.

I'm a simple, simple girl.

Does your garlic press clean the skin out for you too?  WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME?????????????

The Perfect Cheap Kitchen Bowls!

I love to cook. I have learned to enjoy baking since I can't find a lot of fresh gluten free baked goods. I love baking pans, muffin tins, etc. You know...cuz I like neat stuff. LOL! I have all I need or, at least, I thought I did until I rolled up on this FABULOUS Anchor Hocking 2.5 quart glass bowl at HomeGoods for $4.99.  The bowl is true perfection.  I wish I could explain it to you but I can't.  It's just seriously the most perfect bowl.'s the size to make 6 muffins or one cake layer.  And well...sometimes you need a dozen.  So I went looking for a larger one just like it and HomeGoods didn't have it so I checked with Mr. Bezos 'nem over at Amazon and BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABY...check out this deal.  You get two 4 quart bowls for $17.99.  

They are on the way!  GO ME!

Bowls.  I know...weird.  

Bitzonic Wireless Earphones

I've been in the market for a pair of bluetooth earphones.  I love the wired earphones I use but I understood it would make certain tasks easier if I had a pair of wireless ones like watch television while The Robinator is sleeping and I can't shut off my brain just yet.

I looked high and low on Amazon and got overwhelmed with the process so I stopped.  Then...I remembered that I'd seen Shelly with some recently so I figure I'll just buy whatever she's using cuz she's a music head and wouldn't continue using headphones which didn't work right.

So she sent me the link to hers:  

I was expecting to pay around $70 - $100 for a pair.  Um...they were $15.95.  *BLINK*  Surely that must be wrong.  WITH Amazon Prime they $15.95.  I hit 'Add To Cart' so quick I broke a nail.

I'm sitting here using them now and they are awesome.  You can't be too far away from what you're connected to but since I use them with my laptop and my Note 5, I'm good.  When I'm working out I use my Buddy Pouch so having the wire behind my neck will make it easier to listen to music while switching it up.  GO ME!

What earphones do you use?  How much did you pay for them?  Are you happy with them?

Running Buddy Pouch. No Belt! No Tilt!

When I workout I use a fanny pack kinda pouch thingy for my phone.  After a while, however, the belt starts irking me something serious.  I go through different motions of trying to put it on over my shorts/tights and t-shirt so as not to get that horrid rub-rub.

And the armbands irk me too.  I have issues.  Seriously.

So I looked for something else.  I found it in the Running Buddy Pouch and used their chat feature to ask if it would work with my new phone, the Note 5 since it's pretty large.  I was told yes if I took into consideration the size of the case I'd use on the phone so I bought one thinking I'd buy the slimmest case possible.  

The case is pretty cool because you stick the flap inside of your waistband and it has strong magnets that keep it in place.  It won't move, tilt, etc.

When I got it I was bummed because it was such a TIGHT fit and, since the earbud connection is at the BOTTOM of the phone, I wouldn't be able to use it.  I was disappointed and used the chat feature thingy on their site again to let someone know that it didn't work.

Imagine my surprise when the phone rang and it was Greg from the company.  He told me to check out the insert card and then go to for information about how the mesh part is a ripstop material and I could put the hole in wherever the port is located on my phone.  I told him that it wasn't just that but the size of my phone too.  I was so impressed however, I decided I'd just give this one to Robby and I'll wait until November when the slightly bigger one comes out.  Like...who takes time out to call a customer anymore?????  For that alone, every runner on my Christmas list is getting one of these for Christmas.  Seriously.  That impressed me beyond reason.  I totally predict this small, family owned company is going to go far because of their word of mouth traffic.  There is just no way that you can keep something this amazing to yourself.

I just read some of the customer reviews who took it to Disneyland and other parks and I can't WAIT to use it on a roller coaster!!!!!  LOL!  Wheeeeeeeee!  Look ma no hands!

Greg...if you're reading this...yall rock.  I'm going to get a couple of those H2O pouches and the new pouch when it is released too.  Thank you for offering up AMAZING customer service.  Dude...yall rock.  

Beauty and Fashion Randoms of an Over 40 Blogger

I needed something to wear to an event and got excited.  See...I'm not fashion or beauty obsessed although I tend to keep up with what is necessary for me to know in both departments.  I tend to buck trends and pretty much wear exactly what I want to wear.  The good thing about being over 40, is that I can pretty much get whatever I want to get.  You know...if I want it.

The older I get, the more I'm into comfortable shoes.  I own lovely heels, of course, but they are never my first choice anymore and I tend to plan an outfit around the shoes I want to wear.  I'll never get too old for a funky pair of Chucks and I will never pass up the opportunity to buy something others might consider outrageous if it makes me smile.  LOL!

I just recently bought some leather and glitter sneakers that make me smile.   People look down at them in surprise and then back up to my face quickly.  LOL!  I SEE YOU!!!!!!!!

I'm not into homely clothes and love to rock figure flattering pieces that aren't hoochie.  I don't like too tight pants so all my skinny pants have a good amount of "GIVE" in the material.  I have a crazy knack for picking out a funky and fun top and I have a wall filled with funky tops that I pair with jeans, shorts, sandals, ballet flats and sneakers.

I think I have skinny legs so I don't wear shorty shorts but I do wear fitted shorts if that makes sense.  (Odd I know.)  I still stick to the principle that if you only BUY things that look cute on you, you will only OWN things that look cute on you.  I don't like matchy matchy and I adore mixing super cheap pieces with pricey pieces.  My normal every day shorts are cargo shorts from the boy's department cuz you can't find cargo shorts for women with a good length for women anymore it seems.

My day-to-day wear would probably be considered tomboy chic or sporty luxe and, even though I feel I could wear some of the latest trends the younger people wear...I don't. And I don't consider jeans, t-shirts and Chucks to be young people clothes.  These things are ageless.  LOL!  And yes...I will probably be 80 rocking some fly glasses and some fresh to death glitter Chucks.

I pay attention to my "More" magazine and I check out the new stuff regarding makeup etc.  I'm not really there yet regarding makeup and am just now starting to play with different stuff when I do wear makeup which is still...HARDLY EVER.  In lieu of makeup...I will rock a pair of hot sunglasses or a hat.  LOL!  And my lips stay fresh with some good old Aquaphor which I pretty much use all over.

The only thing I have really started focusing on as I age is exposure to the sun.  Especially on my face and neck.  I'm not trying to hide from the sun but I also don't want to have to get to the point where I HAVE to wear makeup in order to have good looking skin and I have been known to have odd breakouts when in the sun at random times.  UGH.

I don't like my hair these days as the grey is something I guess I'll have to take action on eventually because it's getting more and more grey and, insultingly, all around my hairline waving and ish.  I can't find a stylist that I love locally so weekly appointments to make my life lovelier is out of the question and the drive to the one who makes it look right is too far for weekly maintenance.  

My dentist keeps asking if I want to whiten my teeth and I keep telling them that I think it's creepy when folks' teeth are whiter than their eyes and that I would spook myself in the middle of the night during a bathroom run in the dark.

I still do my level of workouts which maintain what I'm working with and well...I'm unwilling to do much more if I don't have to.  I don't want to be the fittest looking girl in the room...I just want a flat tummy and a nice butt.  I was working out with a guy who was really kinda harsh with it and well...I thought it best if I didn't continue going over there.  You know...getting yelled at and whatnot.  I have to figure out something, however, because for the past two days it has been too hot during my normal 30 minute morning walk and sprint session to get a good workout in without  Too hot.  I hate germy gyms but I'm going to have to do something and have access to a treadmill soon cuz this heat is going to kill me and the way my heart murmur is set up...

When I'm looking to wear something special, I tend to visit a few of my favorite beauty and fashion blogs for and by women of a certain age.  See...they get me cuz they ARE me.  They are fly but no longer 20 and each one of my FAVES has the type of style that shows they know THEIR style THEIR way.  They aren't trying too hard to be sexy and they generally have smiles that reach their eyes which makes me smile.  I know...clearly I have simple criteria but it's so true.


Extra Petite - She's the youngest on this list.  I like her style though.  She does tomboy to girly girl right.

Style Pantry - This should be a DUH as she is probably on all of our lists.  I mean...she is like the Diana Ross of fashion to me.

Lady of Style - I get a lot of good ideas from her on how to mix up things I already own.

Erica B. - Another DUH...I mean's our girl.

J'Adore Couture - I get diva brunch outfit ideas from her.  

Fortyfied Beauty - She doesn't just stick to clothes and I like that.  She's pretty simple too.  Enjoying cute comfort.

Style of a London Tall Girl - Tall girls have problems other girls don't.  She owns her tall girl style. 

Forever Amber - Super cutesy clothes.  Ideas for weddings, nice parties, etc.

The Coveteur - I just look over here.  LOL!  I can't afford NOTHING June Ambrose deems rock worthy but I love pretty pictures of pretty clothes.  Oh...and her blog is more about lifestyle too.  She has a great cocktail series going on over there.

What about you?  Where do you get your inspiration from when you're looking for something special to wear?  Who are your goto fashion and beauty bloggers?  Do you generally like fashion blogs by women of a certain age too?  How would you describe your style?  

Is fashion a THING for you?  Or do you just like to look nice?


I was in Target the other day doing what we all do in Target...roam around looking for ish to buy with that red sale dot that we don't need to buy but it's super cute and it's on sale and's really, really cute and really, really cheap.

Yall know how Target sets us up for failure.  Humph.

Well...I rounded a corner and saw this:

Patio umbrellas?  Rugs?  50% off?  I AM SO HERE FOR THAT!!!!!  I snapped a quick pic and sent it to Robby and then to my sister because I knew she'd been looking for one.  Then I sent it to a few girlfriends in the event they were too.  I mean...I NEVER find umbrellas for 50% off.  The most I ever see is 30% off.  I AM HERE FOR A SALE!  I'd been saying we needed to get one but then I was I need to add to the stuff we have to move soon but again...for 50% off...NO.BRAINER.

So I made my decision wisely.  Picked a nice neutral color, rustproof, etc. Basically...I got the most expensive one they had.  Why?  FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!  OH YEAH!

I'm damn near skipping to the register.  The  young lady scans it and I note the price didn't reflect FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!!!!!  OH YEAH! Me...the signs say 50% off.  So, I show her the picture.  She makes her light flash.  Manager comes over.  Manager leaves.  Manager comes back, hits a few buttons and makes the umbrella price FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!  OH YEAH!

Manager:  It's supposed to only be the rugs but it's not your fault.

Me:  *BLINK*'s NOT fifty percent off (no caps)?

Manager:  *sigh*  No.  They were supposed to separate the rugs from the umbrellas and only put the signs on the rugs.  

Me:  Damn.  Sorry.  So...

Manager:  Enjoy your umbrella.

And I drove my cart out slowly, hesitantly.  Dragging my feet.  Called Robby.  Told him.


Me:  (getting excited again)  Yup!


So I came home, put up my new patio umbrella, made me a good lunch and sat outside to enjoy it under the lovely new shade created by my umbrella which was FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!

And then the flies came.  

It was hot as hell.  

I dropped my damn big piece of chicken swatting away flies cuz know what else likes damn shade outside in the damn heat?  YOU GUESSED IT!  FLIES!  DAMN FLIES!

I had to change clothes cuz it was really humid as hell outside and the big piece of chicken was barbeque and now I had a damn stain on my t-shirt AND my shorts where the damn chicken rolled down and then I had to go out and get a damn fly trap cuz seriously???????  I HATE FLIES!  I HATE FLIES!  DIE!  JUST DIE!!!!!

So I picked a cute one. (THIS ONE) That could hang from my new umbrella.  And then maybe I could enjoy the damn thing.

Now that I think about just might be jinxed.  You know...cuz it wasn't FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!

*sigh* (no caps)

Has this ever happened to you?  Did you feel guilty?

Breville Customer Service - TOP NOTCH!

A few years ago, I gave The Robinator a Breville YouBrew coffee maker.  It was instrumental in keeping down the arguments in our home because has been known to drink an entire pot of coffee before I get up to get my one.  There is nothing worse to the person who set up the coffee the night before than to get up to NO coffee the next morning.  Especially when they only drink one cup.  With this machine...I can push a button and make just one cup of coffee from beans.

And we LURVE our coffee straight from fresh ground beans.

Exactly 10 days ago, we were dismayed to find that something terrible was going wrong with our precious.  Steam was rising up and messing up the display and something was going on where the water wasn't going through it's usual process.  Our sweet baby was broken.


In a fit of desperation after asking Mr. Google, I called the number on the machine for Breville's customer service.  I told them what was going on and asked if there was a fix for it.  The young man asked me to read to him the numbers stamped on the underside of the machine and then he told me that...VOILA...we'll send you a brand new one.


Him:  What's your email address?  I'll send you a FedEx shipping label.  Just box it up and either drop it off and have it picked up.

Me:  *BLINK*  Um...okay...

Him:  As soon as we receive it, we'll send you a new one.  The entire process takes about 10 days.

Me:  *BLINK*

I got off the phone in a straight up daze and told Robby.

Robby:  *BLINK*

Me:  Yeah.

So...we boxed that sucker up and FedEx made it do what it do.

Turns out filling out those warranty cards or online registration really makes a difference.  LOL!  GO ME!

We had to use this 5 cup "extra" coffee maker that Robby's mom had for TEN.DAYS.

The day after FedEx received it we got an email saying the new one was on it's way.  That told me that they didn't even WAIT to receive the old one.  Their system probably logged the size and weight of the box once FedEx put it in their system and they immediately shipped out a new one. 

To say I'm impressed doesn't even do justice to what I feel.  I'm like...A BREVILLE FAN FOR LIFE!  We loved our coffee maker before and now?  WE REALLY LOVE IT!  When this baby is laid to rest, we will be replacing it with a Breville.  Always and forever...each moment with you...just like a dream to me...that somehow came true...

Our new baby arrived today and it was such a touching moment.  We just kept smiling like the proud Breville owners we are.  *Sniff...sniff*  Whenever I pass it by I lovingly touch it.  I can't wait for my first cup of coffee tomorrow morning since I'm now up to two cups.

*NEXT DAY UPDATE*  Mmmmmmmmmmmm...COFFEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  GO ME!

Do you fill out the warranty cards or register your products online? Did you ever get service like this with a product?  


Moisture Wicking Thongs

When I work out hard I like to wear moisture wicking underwear (I like them to be seamless too).  It just makes things more um...comfortable.  I've needed new ones for a minute and ran across some recently.  While searching for my size and different colors, I found that there were moisture wicking thongs too.

And I was confucious.  

Now...admittedly, I don't wear thongs so I don't know if they are comfy or not but I've never tried them because they don't come across as comfortable looking to me so I can't imagine working out or running in some.  I mean...that's

SIP:  And are they REALLY one size fit all tho?

So...yall tell you wear thongs when working out and running?  Do you wear moisture wicking underwear when working out or running?


Walmart's Free Shipping Over $50

It's no secret that I am not a fan of going to Walmart.  I don't like it I don't like it I don't like it!

Being in a small can't really get away from Walmart.  *sigh*

So I make The Robinator go with me.

The other day we were in Walmart and a man was in there with a parrot on his shoulder feeding the parrot a cookie.  When he passed us by I continued looking and noted that the parrot was taking a crap on his back.  And it wasn't the first time according to the dried stains.


In Walmart.

So yeah...I don't wanna go back.

I came home and asked Mr. Google about the Rice Thins crackers that I like to buy at Walmart to have with cheese and the Amazon price was almost $4 a box.  Well...I pay $2.50 a box at Walmart so I wasn't about to pay $1.50 more and then I looked at the search results.  The same crackers were at for $1.98 a box.


So I tipped over there and found that there is free shipping on any orders over $50.  Then...I looked at the running list I keep on the fridge and I sat right there and ordered everything I'd need from Walmart and it will be delivered here FOR.FREE.SHIPPING.

I can live with this.

I'm not going back there.