How is already June? This was compounded by my birthday. The older we get, the more time disorients us. I spent the first part of the month overly conscious of mortality and frankly, indulging in a pity party…more like a pity gala being more emo than 13 year old shopping at Hot Topic. We spent a weekend up in the Catskills (David’s birthday follows mine by ten days). This isolation, babbling brook and hot tub crashed my pity party. This was much needed.
The rest of the month was lackluster, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The weather wasn’t so bad and nature was in full bloom. The usual grimy neighborhood transformed, a little urban oasis of tea roses, lily of the valley and lilacs. I love how extreme the seasons are here.
This month I didn’t do much except for retail therapy and organizing. I went to the Bite Beauty Lab and got a custom lipstick made to look like true morels. To complete the forest-y look, I got the lipstick scented in violets.
We organized our space and it made me feel like an entirely new human being. Why do I put stuff like that off if it makes me feel so high? Oh, because it’s hard work and I hate Ikea with a passion.
Here were some of my favorites from May:
Wearing (fragrance) – Fragrance-wise, it was an odd month. The weather was cooler in the early parts of the month and then it got warm. I was craving “out of season” scents like powdery things, musk and amber. I wore the new Narciso Poudrée and well, Narciso everything. Since revisiting drugstore perfumes, I wore Skin Musk. And then I wore Khol de Bahrain for my powdery fix.
Summary – Having a powder and musk moment. Go figure.
Wearing (cosmetics) – In May, I bought way too many cosmetics. There was just a lot of things out there that I liked. It was funny because the month I bought too much, I really didn’t wear much makeup. My skin was looking good (see below) and when it gets hot, I don’t feel like wearing much. Most days I wear sunscreen and concealer under the eyes. I’d wear minimal eye makeup and a greige-y lipstick. My most worn products were: (for face), NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer for a sheer amount of coverage, dewy finish and sun protection (for lips), Colourpop lipstick and liner in Tootsi, Colourpop liquid lipstick in Trap and my custom Bite Lipstick. I was all about greige. (for eyes) Wet n Wild Colour Icon Eyeshadow in Panther which is a matte black that I use as a liner and the nude colors from my Inglot Freedom Palette. I also like Physicians Formula Solar Bronzer. It’s matte and has SPF 20. Sometimes I’d use it on the eyes too.
Summary – For somebody that bought a lot of makeup in May, I sure didn’t do anything exciting with it.
Wearing (clothes) – Finally the weather changed so I could wear things that weren’t the same ‘ole thing. It wasn’t so hot that I had to start dressing like a bum again (well, a few days I did). My closet is 90% black and the other stuff is white or gray. For some reason, I got a craving for color. I owned nothing in a color except for a pair of Adidas. I bought a peach top (seen in my smelfie) and a cotton dress at Uniqlo the color of terracotta. What’s happening to me?
Summary – I’m failing at my usual goth in summer-ness.
Using (skincare) – I had a La Prairie facial at Osswald that changed my opinion on expensive skincare. For years, I’ve been very stubborn and in the Cult of Paula. I agree that effective skincare can be affordable. But, this changed my skin. It liked “reset” my skin. I didn’t wear foundation all month. I was radiant! I know this stuff has all this irritating ingredients, but geez, my skin looked great. Why? Someone explain this to me.
Summary – I feel like such a traitor. I know that there is good skincare at all price points. It’s just my luck to fall for something that’s some oil and some “ice crystals” that makes me look like a walking Photoshop’d version of my usual self.
Eating/Drinking – My mother-in-law surprised us with a Le Crueset dutch oven (in the shade Marseille) and this really stepped up our game. Creole dishes for days, finally doing red beans and rice that officially (and finally) makes me good wifey material.
Other than that, a Noches de Colombia opened by our place so we go there a lot so I can get beans and rice that I didn’t have to cook. And on hot days, I’ve been all about cucumber sandwiches and iced sweet tea. Oh, I also made myself deviled eggs and bought myself a Fiesta egg plate in Plum to display them on. I’m fancy.
Summary – Just like with “organizing”, new kitchen stuff makes me happy. Why do I never indulge myself with it? Oh, because I’m too busy buying sneakers and makeup.
Listening – With all the tension both politically and socially in this country and in this world, you’d think that I’d feel hopeless. But, I’m not. I have hope because there’s a younger generation that’s coming up. They’re taking this anger and frustration and channeling it into art. I see this in all mediums but with music this year, it’s really a beautiful thing. I’ve been listening to Chance the Rapper “Coloring Book“. And Saul Williams, Kaytranada and The Internet. And when my brain needs turned off, I’m listening to Grenda.
Summary – There’s good things going on. Go to a show. Go to a reading. Go to a gallery. These young’uns are doing great things.
Watching – Well, RuPaul’s Drag Race ended with Bob the Drag Queen winning, so I was happy. I love me some political queens. Empire ended on the most bat shit crazy finale I’ve ever seen with stories bouncing off of each other like they were thrown into the soap opera tumble cycle. But, I ain’t mad ‘tho. I loved it.
In the Catskills I got bored and there was satellite. I binged watched “Botched” and “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives”. I have no shame.
Summary – There was a time in my life where I watched cerebral films and went to film festivals. Now look at me. I’m watching shows about chili cheese dogs and unfortunate breast augmentations. Still ain’t mad ‘tho.
Reading – I read Lucia Berlin “A Manual for Cleaning Women: Selected Stories“. I actually have a lot to say about it but I’ll try to keep it quick. It’s a (generous 432 page) collection of short stories that piece together to tell the story of a woman, or women. Most stories in from the perspective of the women, with a few exceptions. The stories careen through decades and setting. There’s pre-gentrified Berkeley in the 70’s, the artistic energy of NYC in the 60’s and the volatile political climate of Chile in the 1940’s. Berlin is an entertaining and brilliant writer that manages to be engaging in the way that pragmatic oral traditions and colloquialisms are but polished with her well-traveled experiences and formal literary education. She’s incredibly entertaining, at times reminding me of the hilarious but resilient woman on my father’s side of the family (who all could make any mundane occurrence sound like a story). There’s pain behind every laugh. At times, the stories are hard to get through with reoccurring themes of mental illness like depression and addiction. There’s despairing stories of death and illness. There’s trauma that comes from the genetic affliction of “dysfunctional family”. But, still I read it because Berlin’s writing is consuming, filled with emotion, details and adroit use of language. Her sardonic humor is mutli-layered but mainly there to provide some self-relief from the complications that come along with existing. There’s something in this collection of stories that will resonate with each of us.
I recommend it even though some of the language is a bit cringe-worthy at times (even though it’s necessary and adds to the specific story. It’s more of a reminder that it’s the words that change, but not the concept and how it affects civilization). Plus, towards the end there’s a generous mention of nice perfumes in a story where you’d absolutely not expect it. The stories are pollinated with olfactory references.
Summary – Let’s toast to tough women! Let’s drink to ladies that love words!
Wanting – To learn something new. I’ve been thinking about taking classes to get my Spanish tight. Or maybe take a more intensive weaving class. I don’t know, I just want to get into something.
Summary – Keep on learning. And rant, I don’t get how there are all these filthy rich people (like let’s use the Kardashians as examples) that just don’t go to school all the time. Like if I were filthy rich, I’d be like “See ya, I’m studying Ottoman poetry in some villa by the Aegean Sea” or “Can’t make it to your store event, studying Italian Renaissance puppetry in Sicily”.
What were your favorites from May? Did you do anything inspiring? Go anywhere inspiring? Eat anything inspiring?
*Sephora, Macy’s, Amazon and Yves Rocher contain affiliate links. Thanks! All pics are mine except for – Chance the Rapper album cover from chanceraps.com. Bob the Drag Queen gif from tumbnation.com. I didn’t even know I could gif on my blog. Textile art by Ana Teresa Barboza from Anthology Mag.