Monday, February 29, 2016

Five Things No One Tells You About Labor & Delivery

If you're like me when you encounter something new you try to obtain as much information on it as possible so you can be prepared. While knowing all there is to know may freak some people out, it comforts me to know that what I'm experiencing is normal and natural. That said, I was more than annoyed to find out that a lot of things that NO ONE spoke about happened to me and lots of other women. So instead of keeping these to myself, I've decided to share my information with you. 

DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor. This is not medical advice. I am simply sharing my experience and what I've gleaned to be normal from conversation with other mothers.

1. You may not realize that your contractions have started

My contractions started in my sleep. They initially felt like a stomach cramp and they were a few days before my due date. They didn't wake me up but it wasn't until I used the bathroom and saw the beginnings of my plug did I realize that they weren't random cramps but actually contractions.

2.  Contractions Can Start and Stop for Days

In the days before I delivered I was admitted to the hospital twice. My contractions had started and progressed normally and then completely stopped all of a sudden. I was prepped for labour and everything and then sent home. Afterwards I was told it's a pretty common thing. We found using an App made it easier to time them.

3. The Pain May Actually Be Bearable. The Duration May Not

I say this tongue in cheek. Everyone's threshold is different so bearable is extremely relative. That said if you are having your first baby, expect your contraction to last 6-8 hours - at least that's what I read in a book. My experience was that they lasted for about 36 hours - my mother had a similar experience with her first child so I half-expected the long wait. What I didn't expect was that when it came time to push that I would be so exhausted!

4. Your Lady-Princess Gets A LOT of Visitors 

If you're taking a long time to dilate pretty much everyone is going to want to check you every few minutes. And by check I mean the finger test -the nurses, the mid-wives, the doctor. 

Yup... I'll just leave that here

5. You May Not Be 100%...For a Long Time or You May Snap Back Right Away

I was surprised to find out that you don't just have your baby and go home in a couple hours. In fact, most persons overnight for observation purposes. Your body goes through a ridiculous amount of stress in the birthing process. Your blood pressure, your organs, your heart all need to be stabilized before you can even think of standing up. Your hormones can go all over the place and even if you didn't do a C-section you may have to be on bed-rest for a couple of days.
This is in addition to your nether regions healing. It's very important for you to be comfortable and happy with the after-care you and your baby are to receive after the birth because you will want gentle, kind, patient persons who will answer all your questions without making you feel silly.
You may not be able to sit up, you may not be able to lift your legs, you may not be able to use the bathroom on your own. It's very important to be patient with your body as it recovers. Put things in place so you can focus on your new babe and yourself.
If you do snap back right away enjoy the new journey!

*til lata

Monday, July 27, 2015

Update: Where Have I Been?

 Since we last spoke, a whirlwind of things have been happening and though I've missed blogging I have been forced to prioritize everyday things over being able to sit down for a minute and produce content. Not to worry, they have been mostly good things but they have demanded quite a lot of my time. 

I have pondered whether I should share what's been happening, and how much I should share and I've decided to share only that which will affect this blog moving forward so as to maintain some privacy for my family and myself but still keep you guys in the loop a bit. So I'll stop rambling and give you my updates:

1. We're having a baby!!!

I learnt that contrary to popular belief, you're pregnant for more than nine months. I have found myself seeking out mommy blogs of calm mothers who juggle earning as well as being caregiver and I feel like that will be an added element of the blog in the future. I know that our lives will change beyond anything we can imagine so I am just taking it one day at a time and trying not to figure out how or who I'll be after the birth.

2.  I have closed/ put on hold my jewellery business

When I first started Namesake, I was working for myself and could handle quality control, processing and customer service because I could structure my time. Once I started working for someone else it became a definite struggle. It required using a delivery man, and someone who was unfamiliar with following up with customs and/or customers to handle queries. Further, asking clients to wait eight hours for a response to an inquiry was not a good idea. Eventually, because I could not get the help I needed, we decided to close the store for now.

3. I've been assigned more responsibility

I am now in charge of more than just myself. This means ultimately I have less time for myself at work but more things to do. This has required some massive re-organization in the way I carry out my daily tasks and requires me to learn and carry out management skills I had previously relied on infrequently. I now have to actively work on growing myself as a person and an employee and it's been quite the learning curve.

4. I'm writing a book...

Sigh. I'm writing a book I hope to finish by the end of this year. I feel compelled to write it and to finish it. I will be sharing snippets right here on the blog so you can look out for that. I really really hope you like it and will be able to see my vision and why it's so important for me to write it.

There are many more changes I wish I could share with you. Some you will notice if you pay close attention over time, others will have to remain a secret. I have a new appreciation for personal style and clothes, now that I can't fit into 80%  of my pre-pregnancy wardrobe so I know I will be curating my style and the things I talk about on this blog more carefully from here on out.

Thank you so much for sticking with me through this time and look out for more posts in the future.

'til lata,

Friday, October 17, 2014

What to Keep in Your Desk Drawer

We all know it, it pays to be prepared especially on those days when just about everything is going wrong. After a particularly fail-worthy day at the office I created a checklist in my head of things I should keep in my desk at my office for those days when it is absolutely impractical to go home. I've divided the list into two sections - Essentials and Add-Ons. If I've left off something be sure to let me know and I can add it to the list. Here We go:


  • Chargers : Because duh... you don't want your phone or your tablet to die. This is your only way of contacting the outside world, and is the 'essentialest' of essentials
  • Hygiene Kit: This is a small pouch and should include toothpaste and toothbrush, deodorant, and a small rag. If you are a lady, include a few panty liners & sanitary napkins. Some persons also carry an extra pair of underwear but I don't feel too comfortable having panties in my drawer at work but to each his own.
  • First Aid Kit: because accidents happen and nobody wants to touch your blood. #justsaying;
  • Sewing Kit : You don't actually have to know how to sew. This can include things like dressmaker's tape to easily fix a loose hem; safety pins for broken zippers and extra buttons if you do know how to sew;
  • Light Snacks: If you get hangry, please spare your co-workers and keep something in your desk to reach for when the day runs longer than you think it will;

Add- Ons

  • Headphones: not everyone shares your taste in music and they shouldn't be subjected to old school whatever it is that keeps you awake;
  • Lint roller: unless you like it when that cute co-worker tries to brush off your fuzzies. (Naughty naughty!)
  • Handheld Mirror & Brush : If you play with your hair, you may want to take a look at it before you get up from your desk to report to your boss;
  • Umbrella : cuz rain...duh
  • Extra pair of shoes: Your heel could break, the sole could come off, you could have tracked through mud to get into the office or you could want a break from your heels. Please do not bring flip flops - flats are always a better more professional option - you aren't at home.

What do you need to have at work to function properly? Leave me a comment and let me know!

'Til later,

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


The holiday/shopping season is fast approaching and we have to prioritize ladies! I am still compiling my wishlist but I'm so excited about it that I absolutely have to share it with y'all. 

Here are my top five things I definitely want to acquire by the end of the year:

1. GiGi New York Uber Clutch

I think the later it gets in the day, the less you want to carry around a full handbag. There are days when I just want to grab something small with my phone and keys and go. that's it - no fuss. I want it to be good quality where it won't fall apart and for it to still look professional. 
I like these Uber Clutches by GiGi New York because they're gorgeous to look at, are real leather, lightweight and I can get my initials engraved. Choose from various colours and various leathers but get the same result-a  gorgeous, quality, luxury piece.

2. Cool- Girl Jewellery by Namesake JM

Grand Pearl by Namesake JM
A unique piece of jewellery elevates your outfit in a way that nothing else can. This Fall I'm going for chic pieces that can be worn to make casual outfits look more sophisticated and formal outfits look more modern and youthful. I like this piece in particular because it's unexpected but still looks slightly vintage.

3. The Ultimate Red Lippie

picture taken from Violet Grey
There is something about a red pout that is feminine and powerful. I was going through Violet Grey's instagram feed when I spotted this and fell in love. I immediately looked it up and it is called 'Brat Pack' by Lipstick Queen and is listed at $50USD (sigh) so, much to my dismay I stopped myself from ordering it immediately. But I mean...I WILL have this by the end of the year because look at it. Beyond gorgeous! Ugh!

4. Luxe Sleepwear


You might be wondering how I'm gonna keep warm in something like this at night. Well, I live in the Caribbean and it doesn't really get cold here. When I spotted this line I knew I had to have it. Luxurious material meant to actually be comfortable and sexy. It's a blend of jersey and silk which will wear well in both the dryer and the washing machine. Watch this space for more information on how you can get your hands on this gorgeous line.

5. Travelling Essential


Travelling during the holidays can be a ridiculous hassle especially now. I generally feel less stressed when everything I've packed is organized and I can easily reach for what I want. These gorgeous leather pochette will be available for the rest of the year from Namesake JM. You can fill this pochette with up to 7 items and no less than 3 items at reduced prices that will make your holiday that much merrier. It will make shopping for your family a breeze - one bag can take care of everyone. Watch this space for more information very soon!

What is on your wishlist this season? Share below in the comments section for a chance to win a coupon from Namesake JM today only!

Till later!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Fall Favourites 2014

Fall is in full effect and I have been having a bit of fun trying out new products and trends. Here is a small list of the things I've been loving so far this season:

1- Nude heels: Nude shoes are having a moment with me. I recently added this pair of cut out pointy-toe heels I picked up in the sale at Lord & Lady's (it's still going on and they still have cute stuff!). I've been pairing them with midi and pencil skirts as well as slim fit tailored pants;

2 - Glasses: As someone who has to wear glasses I totally skipped the 'nerd' trend because who really wants to wear something they already have to wear? But, I recently chopped off my hair which makes me pay more attention to how my brows look, and I like how these frames pair with a bolder brow and a darker lip for Fall;

3- Olay Fresh Effects Satin Moisturizer: Now this right here is a game changer. It's a moisturizer that comes out like a lotion but transforms into a gel when it touches your skin. I love it because it does not melt off my face even in the super humidity we are experiencing now. I will post a more detailed review on it later on;

4 - Revlon ColorSensational Lipstick in Copper Charm: If you follow beauty trends you will have realized that the brown lip from the 90s has re-emerged. Hundreds of beauty girls are doing tutorials on how to get that grunge, Kylie Jenner lip. This ranges from deeper nudes to warm mauves. If you are looking for a neutral brown lip then I highly recommend this colour;

5 - Jordana Lip Pencil in Terra Cotta: If you are just experimenting and you want to dip your toe into the brown lip trend, a lip pencil is an inexpensive way to do this. The color payoff is excellent and it can be matte or glossy with the simple addition of a lip balm or a lip gloss;

6- Lancome Rouge in Love Lipstick #381B: The purple lip lives on in a darker tone for Fall. Most persons will go for a darker red or wine, so stand out from the crowd in a similar shade to this one. I like mixing this with deeper berry tones as well;

7- Boyfriend Watches: I am wearing the heck out of this trend before I have to kiss it goodbye for Spring 2015. I still love me some bold-face chunky bracelet watches;

1 - Monogram Jewellery from Namesake JM - I'm obsessed with personalizing things and really what is better than a beautiful gold necklace with your very own monogram? See more like this on others on Facebook and Instagram;

2- Pave Diamond Jewellery - this is a much subtler way to wear diamonds and I love it - understated and unexpected;

3 - Stacking Rings - a manicure always looks better with stacked rings and this set from Asos is perfect. They are even having a sale going on right now (and the shipping is free worldwide guys)  Check it out here ;

4- Gigi New York Datebook - I am in love with this Datebook - gilded pages, white snakeskin cover and I even got my initial engraved on it. Unlike my other datebooks it isn't heavy, doesn't take up too much space in my bag and is pretty enough for me to want to constantly reach for it. You can get yours here;

5 - Blank Notebook - I have a thing for books. I collect them and store them all over my house but I very rarely fill up any book. I solved that problem with this small chic version. Small enough to not take up too much space anywhere and the faux croc skin makes me want to write in it and to check off my to-do lists throughout the day. Plus its way chicer than random scraps of paper floating about in my bag;

6 - Covergirl Tru Blend Foundation - an affordable foundation that has yet to turn orange. It doesn't clog up my pores, doesn't sit on top of my skin and doesn't make me look cake-y. It has survived numerous nights out without smearing onto hubby's shirts or my clothes and has not broken me out. I wouldn't say this has amazing coverage - perhaps light to medium which is fine for me. I will give a more detailed review on this at a later date;

7-  We looked at this already so we'll move ahead to the next item;

8 - Pretty Jumbo Straws - I have been working extra hard these days which means I try to savor as much sleep time as possible. In order not to skip breakfast, I have been drinking my meal. Thicker shakes and smoothies require jumbo straws and I have been concerned at the amount of plastic I've been putting out into the earth because of it. I saw these gorgeous reusable straws at the supermarket and just had to have them. What utensil do you love in your kitchen?


House of Cards: Blew my mind over and over and over again. Watch it NOW!

What have you been loving this season? Leave me a comment and let me know. 

Till later!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Get Ready For Fall in Five Easy Steps

Fall is around the corner, and while some are clinging to the last few days of summer I literally sighed in relief when I painted on my first dark polish for the season. There's just something about Fall that makes me happy. I love the layering, the beautiful jewel-toned clothing and accessories, the excitement from NYFW, and the jackets. I LOVE the jackets.

I thought it might be useful to help y'all move on from the end of summer by sharing 5 tips on how to get ready for Fall. Just in case you know, it snuck up on you.

1. Get Your 2015 Planner

In the business world we've already begun planning for 2015. Instead of trying to scribble in your important meetings and events for next year into the super tiny section of your 2014 planner, upgrade to a new 2015 one in a style that screams chic, organized and elegant. 
I am in lust with the new planners from GiGi New York. They are available in a bunch of colours and finishes including traditional leather, embossed python, crocodile embossed leather and metallic leather. You can see more here.  While you're at it, you can get it personalized too! Writing your own name just doesn't do it anymore right?

Leather 2015 Planner

2. Switch out Your NailPolish

Fall calls for richer tones so switch out your neons for jewel-toned colours. One of the hot colours for this summer was white; to transition this for Fall you can go for creamier whites or buff nudes. These colours look better on medium length 'squoval' nails so file down your talons and remind yourself of what it was like to actually type with your fingers.

Image Source

3. Go Matte

Summer calls for shinier finishes but Fall calls for deeper, more matte hues. You will see darker lips and eyes in the magazines signalling you to put away your lipgloss and reach for your matte lip colours. I am personally a fan of super dark reds like L'OReal's Infallible Lip Colour in Persistent Plum.

4. Layer Up

The heat is off so by all means pile on your jewellery. Layers create texture and interest and something that was once ordinary suddenly becomes more special. I love layering because I feel like it marries my different styles all together. There are rules to layering if you want it to look effortless. With jewellery, I go with delicate pieces that pair well together. I also really like mixing metals - gold and copper finishes and rose gold are an unpredictable mix. If you are looking for delicate pieces you can check out my online store here

5. Get The Right Bag

A great bag does great things for your confidence. Even though you might be tempted to buy a super trendy cheap bag or, an expensive branded bag I guarantee you that if you get a good quality leather bag, that has small or no branding  it will be stylish for years.  Get yours here

GiGi New York | Elements Of Style Blog | Natural Grain & Embossed Python Leather | The Gates Satchel @Erin Gates

What are you excited about for Fall?

till later,

Monday, July 21, 2014

Review: L'Oreal Damage Erasing Balm

This is the last in the Deep Conditioner Series and I've been more than happy to go through these with you guys to help you figure out which one serves your interest best. The thing about buying new products is that you have no clue if you'll want to keep using it after the first time or not. So, onto this one - the claims are that this is all you need to repair super damaged hair. Summer heat and humidity along with heat styling can fry your hair so after a month of being particularly rough on my hair, I decided that I would give this a try. Here are my thoughts:


There isn't anything particularly fancy about this packaging. It's a light yellow  thick creme that comes in a transparent tub with a black screw-off top. Again, it may slip from you in the shower,( or maybe I'm just clumsy and drop everything?) and could use some grips to be more ergonomic. It travels really well without spilling all over the place so if you carry this on vacation you won't regret it. It has a ton of product in it so you definitely get a bang for your buck and unless you're literally Rapunzel this will last you quite a while.


This was priced at $1100 JMD which is the higher end of reasonable in my book. I have noticed that products containing protein elements are usually more costly than those that are moisturizing. I'm not sure why, but this could probably explain why it's a little more costly than the other L'Oreal conditioners. Again, this is a pretty thick and creamy product so a little goes a long way. 


Alright, the first thing you will notice right off the bat is that this is very very very scented. Think of if your grandmother's strongest perfume broke and you walked into her room - this is how strong this is. Maybe I'm exaggerating but the scent is very strong. The good thing is that it doesn't last past the rinse. You will need a small blob of this about half the size of a golf ball if you have shoulder length hair; more if your hair is longer. It's a tad rubbery so you will need to massage it in into your shaft. I also recommend smoothing this along the ends of your hair, pinning it up and letting it sit under a cap for about 25 minutes so it can do its job. If you use too much it can make your hair limp and a tad rubbery but just enough adds some slip to the hair to help with detangling.


This isn't a moisturizing conditioner -  however it really helps with preventing breakage quite a bit. It strengthens your hair and reduces the amount of hair you lose from combing and brushing and helps your hair stand up to heat styling. I wouldn't use this every week, in fact I alternate this with a moisturizing conditioner. I would say in order to get the proper moisture you need from your conditioner I would say use your normal conditioner before using this deep conditioner or you may end up with brittle hair. Don't be alarmed, this is a normal side effect of using a protein treatment. I would give this a 6/7 out of 10.

What do you think? Have you tried this? Did you like it? Leave me a comment below and let me know.

'til later,

Enjoyed this post? Check out more of my Reviews here