Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Jammin' On The One

In Puerto Rico, we have great musicians. Today, I am going to blog about one of my favorite ones.

Jose Carlos Agosto Rivera "JC"
His name is Jose Carlos Agosto Rivera. He was born in Aguas Buenas, Puerto Rico. I have known him forever. His parents, Jose and Wilma, are friends of mine and he's a very close friend of my kids. His parents are musicians. His mother, Wilma, sings like an angel and his father, Jose, plays the guitar; so music runs through his veins.

JC's parents, Jose & Wilma
 I contacted him and he told me a little bit about his journey as a musician. JC, as his friends call him, told me he started to take guitar lessons with his friend Carlitos so they could give parrandas at Christmas time. Parrandas in Puerto Rico are so much fun! People come to your house singing and playing different instruments. They wake you up in the middle of the night, eat your food and drink your booze! I Love it!!

JC & Carlitos
JC has been in bands like, Alterego (Alternative Rock), Athaxia (Power Metal), Alas Negras (Heavy Metal) and Solvo Animus (Progressive Metal). He is currently studying Recording Arts at Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida. His goal is to work in the media industry. I wish you all the best JC, I hope that all of your dreams come true!

JC with his band Athaxia



Blessings to all,


Thursday, May 19, 2011

My Interview with Syreeta Rios of Lipstick Killers

A few weeks ago, I discovered a new designer while on Sense of Fashion trying to find a dress for a function I was attending. After seeing her work, I contacted Syreeta Rios of Lipstick Killers and she agreed to do an interview with me for the RL readers.

A model with Lipstick Killers designer, Syreeta Rios.

How long have you been designing?
For close to ten years.

Where are you from?
Originally from Wilmington, Delaware and now reside in Atlanta, Georgia.

Print Romper w/ Sash Retail: $65
How did you come up with the name Lipstick Killers?
My actual company name is Big Gyrl Clothing, Inc. but I wanted to expand my line with more sizes and give it more umph..lol So while I was listening to a song by Ghostface called "Killer Lipstick" talking about women assassins and hustler divas, it inspired me with the name Lipstick Killers. I wanted the line to be different, fierce, punkish, and original so there it goes.

Why plus size? Why couture?
Plus size is where its at baby! I'm a big girl myself and always make my own dresses and there is still such a lack of style and proper definition for plus sizes in major stores so designing for my fellow plus divas will always be something that I will feel passionate about. To be couture is to make custom, made to measure pieces that cost thousands of dollars so I wouldn't say that my collection is couture, but it is my desire to be at that level soon.

What type of woman is a Lipstick Killer?
Lipstick Killers live by their own rules, control their destiny, and fight for everything worth fighting for. We live fearlessly and dress fearlessly. We don't break fashion rules, we create them. We don't live by the trend, we set them. We love hard and work hard just to play even harder. We live a life full of passion, excitement, and fullfillment. Lipstick Killers rock! To read more, please visit my blog post http://www.ustrendy.com/lipstick-killers-collection/blog/.

Tube Top Rhinestone Jumper Retail: $60
What's special about Lipstick Killers?
Its original prints and designs, flowing pieces, tight pieces, unique tees, and some accessories. LKC is where its at for the killer outfit. Its head turning, eye catching garments.

Explain how you construct your pieces?
My pieces are constructed from various patterns and from the heart.

What are your inspirations?
My inspirations come from anything and everywhere. Mainly, I am inspired by different genres of music such as heavy metal, rock, pop, and hip hop.

Do you prefer independent designers or mainstream designers?
 I think independent designers are the best! We hustle hard for what we make and go through so much to put our lines out there. There is nothing like exclusivity.

Sexy Striped Spartan Dress Retail: $45

Who are you influences?
I adore Chanel, Dior, and especially Christian Siriano. I also love Kimora Simmons business ethic and style.

What is the average price of your pieces?
On average about $50

What is your favorite piece?
I must honestly say that I do not have a favorite piece, I love them all like children, equally..lol

Do you have any side projects you want to share with our readers?
 I am also a journalist for examiner.com as a nightlife expert which you can read my articles at http://www.examiner.com/nightlife-in-atlanta/syreeta-rios and also am working on a men's line.

Thank you Syreeta for sharing Lipstick Killers with our readers! Make sure you become a fan on Facebook.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Phat Like Me & Nite Nite Hair

I'm so happy! In December of last year, as I've said before, I was diagnosed with diabetes. My doctor filled my medicine cabinets with high blood pressure meds, cholesterol meds and diabetic meds. I was taking the same medicines as my grandmother. That's when I woke up, I have to start looking at my body and really start changing how I'm treating myself. Well, as of Monday, I've lost 18 pounds!!!  

It's been crazy hard. I do well for a week...fall off...get so busy I don't eat or just grab trifling food. It's a learning process, but I'm taking it day by day. People are starting to notice my weight loss and my clothes are getting loose; some I have to buy in a smaller size! I'm just so proud of myself. I'm going to stop gloating now and start my new nightly hair regimen.

I LOVE my natural hair. I didn't about a year or so ago, but I'm starting to really cherish my hair in all it's glory. Tonight, I'm dry twisting it. I started with a wash-n-go, but I'm too lazy to do two strand twist.

What I used tonight: Organic Root Stimulator Coconut Oil, Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, Shea Moisture Reconstructive Elixir, Ms. Liz Magic Leave In Conditioner (My stylist's concoction of her homemade leave in she uses. It is a special formula of different oils, conditioners and water. She won't even tell me what she puts in it. She sells it for $5.)

I would NEVER leave the house in my two strand twist, definitely not doing that in the dry twist. Me fresh face almost ready to for bed. Need to put on my bonnet and crash...

Finished dry twist. I don't make them pretty, it's just to give my fro some definition.
I will take pictures and post tomorrow so you can see how they turned out. I need to work on my flat twist and cornrolling; one of these days!!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Belle of the Ball: Mariam Mohammadian

Hope you are having a great week so far!

Mariam Mohammadian
Today, I am going to blog about a lovely business woman on the Island. Her name is Mariam Mohammadian. Mariam had a casting for models for her beautiful boutique named GLY. My daughter went and told me that Mariam and Gly Boutique were amazing. I decided to give her a call and ask her about her boutique. She had an amazing story I had to share with you.

Mariam told me she was born in the US; living most of her life in Puerto Rico. Her father was from Iran and died when she was two years old. Her mom is from Puerto Rico. She studied Business Administration at Universidad de Puerto Rico and worked in manufacturing and service companies in management positions with high demands and responsibilities.

As a single mom of a three year old and care provider, for mom and grandparents, she always asked God to provide a job that gave her the flexibility to care for them and the income necessary to comply with all the responsibility. After losing a job, God provided another with one fourth of her previous salary. It was in this job, God transformed her heart and made her look at Him only…to trust in him.
 With that salary, she bought a new car, moved back to her home (she had to rent it) and had food on her table. INCREDIBLE!

Ana modeling for GLY Boutique
Mariam learned all the areas of a business there, with hands on experience. Only after one year and with nothing in the bank, really nothing, she decided to resign and start her own business for plus sized women. GLY was born. As everything in her life, GLY had God written all over it.... Even its name, God Loves You. Her new car had GLY on the license plate, people thought she did that on purpose.

GLY Promo
 Mariam started with a 800 square feet location, in May 1, 2006 (the day the Puerto Rican government closed) As she opened the boutique, a lot of people said she was crazy! Today, GLY is recognized as the first boutique for plus size women on the Island. She is going to have a surprise for her fifth anniversary and you can be sure I will blog about it! She has been blessed with so many wonderful people God has put in her path in her journey through life. Through my next blogs you will get to know GLY Boutique a little bit better. If you want to be the “Belle of the Ball” for any activity GLY is the place to go and get your beautiful clothes.
Mariam, it was a pleasure blogging about you. May God bless you always.

Blessings to all,


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

More Than Just A Fat Girl

Mia Amber Davis
The plus size community has been shattered by the death of model, producer and actress Mia Amber Davis. I didn't know her personally, but I've followed her career over the years. My heart sank in my chest when I read it on Facebook. I went home and told Jay. He didn't know who Mia was. I told him she was the girl from "Road Trip" and tried to scrounge for pictures of her in my plus size catalogs. Soon as I said "Road Trip", he knew immediately who I was talking about, but she was so much more than the leopard print underwear wearing minx most people knew her by. I worked for Ashley Stewart in the past, where she was a spokesmodel and she was one the funniest part in that movie, but she was more than just a fat girl.

Davis produced many television shows including Ricki Lake, Showtime at the Apollo, Change of Heart and Divorce Court. Her television career was extensive way before she ever became a model and in 2008 she was appointed the creative fashion editor for Plus Model Magazine.

She was what all plus size women strived to be, a beautiful healthy woman who was not afraid or ashamed to speak her mind about plus size issues. Whether it was confronting self proclaimed supermodel Janice Dickinson to debating against Anti-Fat buff like Meme Roth, Davis held herself with poise and grace.

More information is coming out about her death. TMZ reported Davis had knee surgery a day prior to her death and was complaining about dizziness. Davis shortly died.

Davis' death helps me realize life is too short. Live, laugh and love...you never know what tomorrow brings. Bless you Mia.

Easy Breezy Beautiful Mille Banchs

Makeup...what a magical word! In Puerto Rico, we have great makeup artists. Today I am going to blog about the queen of makeup in Puerto Rico, her name is Millie Banchs. I had the honor of meeting her a couple of weeks ago.

One day, I was talking to my daughter, Ana, she told me she would love to take professional makeup classes with Millie. I was all for it, because as I blogged before, about Imagen Nuestra Revista being magazine royalty, Millie Banchs is makeup royalty on the Island. Ana contacted her and she started her classes. One day Ana called and invited me to go with her to the class.

Millie Banchs,  model Sara Isabel & Ana

Saturday came and I went to the class with Ana and Elenia, who was her model. I have to admit, I was a bit nervous because I was going to meet the makeup artist to the stars in Puerto Rico, and here I was in front of the sweetest kindest woman I have ever met. She is a very classy lady. I sat there for two hours and I could have been there all day. I felt like I was talking to a friend I had known forever! This lady had so many interesting stories to tell. She told me about her humble beginnings.

Millie was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico and comes from a very large and close-knit family; that have been there for each other in good times and bad times. Millie has traveled all over the world with artists like Celia Cruz. She is so humble and that surprised me. What I liked most about Millie is she always has a kind word to say about everyone. God bless you Millie; the world is a better place with people like you in it!

Millie, Elena & Ana
Blessings to all,


Friday, May 6, 2011

Lovelace in the City: Prison Love

Hello to all my wonderful readers! Sorry I haven't been able to give you any juicy stories over the last few weeks, but I've been on vacation! Never fret, I'm back and ready to update you on my crazy dating life. So let’s get straight to it!

As you know by now, I am very picky when it comes to dating. My friends constantly tease me about “the list” of my desired qualities in a mate. One of the things I do not like is jail birds! I will admit I was attracted to the “bad boy” image in my much younger days, but outgrew that after watching the movie, Baby Boy one too many times. I realized I'm not a “ride or die” type of woman!

 Do not get me wrong; it takes a very strong, loving and patient person to stay committed to someone who is serving time in prison. I want to give a big shout out to the women who stick by their men and “hold them down” while they serve their sentences! Personally, I am too selfish and impatient to wait on someone. However, I can be the best pen pal an incarcerated man has ever met, at least I try! Sometimes it does take me a while (like months) to write back, but that’s because I am a very busy person on the outside! Being a pen pal is where I draw the line. This is where it gets interesting!

I have been writing back and forth to an old friend (we’ll call him Tear Drop) who is in prison. Tear Drop has been incarcerated for almost 7 years, but we reconnected through a social networking site! I don’t mind writing to him, because I know that he is a decent person and we have decent letter conversations. He has asked me to visit him, but I politely declined. To be honest, I don’t think prison visits are sexy and I have a lot of protruding womanly features. I feel like those men will be looking at me like I am a steak dinner! I consider my relationship with Tear Drop just as friends, but my crazy friends seem to think he may be developing feelings for me (which I highly disagree with).

Being in a relationship with him is not up for discussion, seeing how his release date is set for 2012 and I am not attracted to him “in that way”. I am just being a supportive friend. If he was not in prison, he would have a fighting chance, seeing how he does not have any kids, goes to school and is a cool person. I will continue to write him as long as he writes, just because I am a nice person; but there will never be any phone calls or visits! Once he gets out I will still be friends with him, but I really hope he doesn't think he is going to release his built up sexual frustration on me! I wouldn’t be able to walk for a week if I let him do that! Hmmmm, now that is something to consider! Sike!

Well that’s all for this week, tune in next week to see what crazy dating adventures I run into!

Always remember ladies, love yourself first and laugh at the fools who don’t!

XOXO Angel

Thursday, May 5, 2011

May Flowers

May is my favorite month, because I get to celebrate Mother’s day, my Birthday and my daughter graduating from Kindergarten. Sunday is Mother’s Day. I’m proud to be a mom of two beautiful children. To be a parent is an honor and some people don't realize that.

My children
My mother had six children and we range from ages 51- 31. My mother passed away when I was seven from cancer. I’m so thankful for her. She gave me a family that I love to the fullest. I think about her a lot now that I am a mother...so many questions. How could you have six children?! Wondering what advice would she share with me? I miss her. If your mom is still around don’t take her for granted. Tell and show your mom how much you appreciate her every day, not just one day out of the year.

I love taking pictures; it captures moments and creates memories you can look back on. We took family pictures back in March and we had fun!!! We felt like we were at a photo shoot for a billboard. As our kids was posing hubby and I seen future of teenagers with some of their poses. I looked at them and it still amazes me that they are MY KIDS!!! I recommend taking family pictures, and create albums for your children and their family.

Great Mother’s Day Gift Ideas 

• Gift cards are GREAT!!! (from grocery, clothing, favorite restaurant or gas station.)

• Weekend get-away with her friends or alone (send her to visit relatives or friends)

• A day at the spa (pamper her with love)

• Lunch / Dinner

• Flowers and card with a special message from you!

• Jewelry (with kids birthstones)

• Gift Baskets with all her Favorite (candies, movie, cd, perfume)


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

God is Love

Today’s blog is not a fun one; it’s a very serious one I felt I had to blog about. I want to pay tribute to a special young man. His name was Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado. He sadly died on November 14, 2009, he was only nineteen years old. Steven was from Puerto Rico, a beautiful island filled with sun and flowers, where these sort of things do not happen very often. His death was a hate crime. I blog about this because this should never happen to anyone. Nobody has the right to take someone’s life because of their sexual orientation. Steven was GAY.

Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado
According to our local newspapers he was found on November 14, 2009. He was dismembered and decapitated. Steven’s arms, legs and head had been torn off before his body was dumped. Steven was very active and known in the gay community of Puerto Rico. He was a victim of a brutal, disgusting and torturous hate crime. His body was left a few miles out of his home town in Caguas, literally torn limb from limb. This broke my heart!

What I found sad was the police investigator who responded to questions concerning the murder of Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado said that "people who lead this type of lifestyle need to be aware that this will happen." You cannot believe the outrage this statement had on the GAY community. This news traveled all over the world.

Steven's mother with Gay Activist Pedro Julio Serrano

I felt that I had to blog about this because this young man had a family that loved him and his friends adored him. He was a kind and gentle person who had so many dreams to fulfill and that was taken away from him. I was appalled when I heard this. I have so many GAY friends, whom I love and respect. These people are human beings that have as much rights as anyone!

They found the person who killed him and he is in prison, THANK GOD. Steven, I didn’t know you, and my heart wept for you. We must always remember that we must be proud of who we are because that is the key to true happiness!

Blessings to all,


Monday, May 2, 2011

Reflection: The World Rejoices

I was 23 years old on the day of the Twin Towers attack. I worked at a retirement broker on the north side of town. We worked with two of the top insurance servicers in the country, and serviced the retirement accounts of mainly hospital workers. I hated that job. No...the people I worked with were great. I just hated being involved in people's money...and LARGE sums of money at that. 

That morning was like the rest; I remember I was running late from partying the night before. (I was 23...I could never do that crap now. Too old.) It all happened in a flash. I went to my car to get my makeup (yes I used to dress EVERY morning for work) and came back to mayhem on the television when I came back in. I still didn't know what was going on, I was too busy getting dressed.

The ride to work was just as chaotic as I drove past my favorite gas station to pick up cigarettes and confirm what I was hearing...someone flew a plane into the World Trade Center. My heart sank. Everyday I called WTC, one of the offices we worked with was in that building. People we never met but joked with, knew about their family life and bitched with when things got rough.

I ran into the office and someone set up a TV in the front of the room. No one was in their cubicles...everyone silent hanging on to every word the television spewed out. I used to hang out with a girl I worked with. Her sister worked at the Pentagon. My friend was talking to her sister until her call got dropped. Moments later, we found out a plane flew into the Pentagon. My friend screamed and passed out, fearing her sister's fate. (Her sister is fine, but moved home right after the events.)

Phones rang off the hook as people were scared their assets and retirement plans we gone with the lives and buildings. Nothing we could say reassured the people their funds were safe.

The president of our company got on the intercom (an intercom no one knew we had). In his somber voice, he explained our systems were shutting down and we were to go home and mourn our friends we had lost in the towers. We grabbed our things and left. I'd never heard such silence.

Almost ten years later, the world is rejoicing the death of Usama Bin Laden. I'm estatic to see an end of an era of hatered by the hands of one man; but we can't forget the lives that were lost at his hand. We also cannot forget where there is one dead psycotic man, there are a few more to fill his shoes.

I'm praying for the families of my office friends on this day of closure. My office friends brought me great joy. I will never forget them.
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