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Archive of ‘Just Julia’ category

Smooth Saturday | Penthouse Party, Tribecca

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DISQUS Blog Comments | Discuss With Me, Comment More!

Hey guys, I’m so happy I finally got this to work!  I was having a few quirks on the old comments syncing but now DISQUS blog comments is fully operational on my blog!  I wanted to resurrect life in my comment threads and be able to discuss with you all, rant, rave, or swoon back, and laugh it up easily in the same manner that comment threads become lively, more interactive and fun on Facebook or Instagram for example. I spotted DISQUS on the blog of Anna (Vivianna Does Makeup she gets like a minimum of 20 comments for every post) and more recently on first class US beauty blogzine ITG (Into the Gloss), and I also noted that select news sites like the Atlantic for example use DISQUS, too.  I figured if thousands of strangers are able to comment on the Atlantic via DISQUS it’s got to be simple enough for blog readers, too.  All your old comments (at least all I hope, last I checked) have been synced here already.  For some of you this new comments section may look a little less straightforward than before.  Don’t worry, you DO NOT have to register with DISQUS just to leave a comment (but with a free DISQUS account you get the option of voting up comments), you can go for logging in using your social media account OR if you really just don’t wanna care too much just “comment as guest”…see the example below.  By the way, a certain “gentleman” was quite obliging to help me demonstrate how public guest comments work, haha!  To leave a comment as a guest  just click in the “Join the Discussion” box to begin commenting and when you click in the “Pick a name” box underneath to leave your name…the option of “I’d rather post as a guest” will be there so just check that.

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Hey guys, leave me comments.  Don’t be shy and let’s begin discussing!  To make it fun I’ll begin putting up photo topics for discussion just so we can all get to know each other a little better and have fun putting our opinions out there via DISQUS.  Don’t worry IF in the long-run this comment program doesn’t begin to improve our interaction or ease the way I moderate comments it’s pretty simple to just deactivate it and all the new comments from Disqus can be safely synced back into the old WordPress comments.  Here’s something to help you understand it better.  To totally visualize and get how much less limiting DISQUS is when it comes to topic interaction check out this catchy 1 minute viral video ad of theirs (via YouTube).

Just a Few Thursday Thoughts

When I was in grade school I used to anticipate Valentine’s Day even more than I did when I was older.  Ironically, it was when I was young that something  magical or surprising would happen, almost  every year after Grade 3 especially in my last few years before high-school.  Now that I look back those were innocently fun times.  I was hardly ever or maybe even never a girl who had tactics under her sleeve and I let love roll right on in if it did and I discerned about boys with prayer (when I remembered to LOL).  I’ve learned a lot of right and unlearned a lot of wrong in the last two decades of being “love” aware.  I unintentionally don’t deal BIG on Valentine’s but I’m not one of those anti-hearts-day people either, that would be too pretentious on my part.  A day about love is much too grand to dismiss.

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I still enjoy the worldwide celebration of love, gift-giving and sappy music even.  I just happen to believe it’s people who really make Valentine’s Day special, not the other way around.  I’m pretty neutral about it because well, for one I don’t think we need just one day to go all out and express love, it can be any day but at the same time it’s still lovely to have a certain time of year to look forward to.  I pray that people learn to never regard Valentine’s Day as just an excuse to do finally do something affectionate to end up with somebody.  I’d like to think about it more deeply like as another more obvious opportunity to reach out to someone sincerely.  The well-meaning S. A. D. (single awareness day) questions will float up again and I’ll just have to say “No real reason why, just haven’t found my willing weirdo.”

5 Ways to Relax Before 2014 Hits High Gear

The month of January is drawing to a close and while it may have been an already hectic month for some of you for many others it may just be the last mellow month before the year truly kicks into high gear.  I wanted to share 5 simple ways to relax before truly swerving into the “rat race”.  It’s okay to prepare to speed up, but there always is a calm before the storm and I think before you make speedy decisions it’s important to clear out that mind.

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Illustration: Kathleen Jennings “@tanaudel”

1.) TURN OFF/LIMIT TECHNOLOGY- I’m sure this image already suggests that with flying colors.  I am so obviously not helping in this department at the moment LOL, but right after this you should get out of here.  I myself did this last week.  If this isn’t possible for some of you because of your jobs (especially if you’re in the internet industry this needn’t apply) at least restrict yourself to PMs, DMs, email, and SMS messages for work, or set a time of day when it’s time to switch off once work is done.  Better yet charge your laptop and tablets outside of your bedroom.  Also stall the selfies for awhile.  One of my uncles has actually prohibited his daughter from taking selfies of herself until she’s 18 and no, she’s not even one of my celebrity cousins.  She’s allowed to take pictures of herself WITH other people.  To some it may sound absurd but I believe that limiting self-consciousness in children and adolescents is wise…it expands compassion and encourages a consciousness towards others.   I wouldn’t expose my future children to interactive technology until they’re after the age of 5 or in Grade 1.  I know it’s easier said than done but the experts have found many problems with toddlers addicted to gadgets.  New studies from the world’s top experts have shown that premature exposure to touch and video technology in toddlers is inhibiting their proper mental development and exercise of their motor skills.  The rampant use of technology to amuse children is also fueling rage and impatience at an early age.  They grow up believing there is a shortcut or button for everything.  Some experts are even calling exposure to videos and apps “baby crack” which dopes them and entertains them to make them stay put, but it is highly unhealthy.  In the end, for us adults, life’s not all about your best profile photo.

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Stay away from YouTube, 9GAG, Vine and the usual places you go to try and be amused or entertained by sometimes irrelevant information, yes even blogs.  I was only on YouTube last week to look at some possible recipes and also to follow workout sessions.  The mind isn’t a bottomless pit and it can get crowded and the excess won’t help especially during times when you need to be able to think clearly for work…the net junk will reduce decision-making quality. There, there, don’t sob now, LOL, it’s not forever…I’m only saying that temporary abstinence flushes the mind.

2.) TRY COOKING OR MAKING A SIMPLE MEAL FROM SCRATCH -  If you can read, you can cook, if cooking’s complicated try baking.  If none of that is simple enough, make a sandwich, salad, multiple dips (guacamole for example), or soup.  Don’t use a mix that’s jampacked with fillers and MSG, really COOK something.  Some may have natural talent but with practice others who don’t can still feed themselves and other people…seriously.  If you have any doubts check out Jamie Oliver’s apps, YouTube channel, and books.  If you want local kitchen tested recipes look no further than Nora Daza’s easy to follow books.  There’s also an economic relevance that will boost your health when you cook it yourself, because the unhealthy stuff (rich dishes, deep fried dishes) are more difficult to make and clean up after than healthy stuff (salads, soups, steamed, grilled, and boiled stuff).  Watch this video here.

I’m late in the game but finally discovering that I enjoy being in the kitchen and have a palate (sense of taste) that impresses my family…now I need to develop the regular habit of planning meals and buying the ingredients.  I baked a lot a few years back but it’s been way too much of a hiatus. This culinary motivation might also be related to the book I’m reading by Banana Yoshimoto called “Kitchen”.  Which leads me to my next tip.

3.) READ A BOOK, A BOOK WITH REAL PAGES – Gadgets put strain on the mind because they offer too many options for you to change your mind.  Press this to go here, tap this to do that, jump here…jump there.  Our minds have become like Mexican jumping beans because of too many options presented.  Pick up a real book and there’s nowhere else to go but to the next page…and sometimes that’s exactly what we need.  One story, one path, one direction, one thing…what makes you beautiful…*cough*.  Read it in  bed, in your favorite chair, or in a tub…it’s nice to know if the book falls into the water all you need to do is hang it out to dry…you break nothing.  Also…don’t read it with music on I suggest, we’re trying to train the mind to do one thing undividedly.

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4.) GO OUT AND SEE @SOMEONE IN THE FLESH - This might be my favorite one yet.  There’s nothing like two or more souls meeting up and having a good time outside of Viber, Snapchat, iMessage or whatever else we use from day to day to connect.  Nothing compares with a real, personal connection with someone whose face you can squeeze.  Surprise someone by actually calling them up and rallying the flash mob.  SEE A HUMAN BEING, STOP STARING AT AVATARS.

5.) REALLY WRITE, DRAW, OR SOMETHING – You needn’t laugh, some kids today don’t even know how to draw or write anymore sadly.  Even if you’re not an artist you should know that committing something to paper physically actually unwinds the mind.  You could draw your coffee cup with a ballpoint pen for all I care but handwriting and drawing brings the mind to a different place, and it is peaceful.  If you really can’t stand drawing then paint something blank like a box or a cup a different color…just the act of doing something visual with your hands to impact something else makes a difference.

I hope these tips all together didn’t end up feeling like a “filler” blog post, I really wanted this post to be different and matter and not just be beauty or the usual wellness related methods to relaxation :).  I’d like to challenge all my readers to at least try one of these 5 things once for more than an hour before January ends and see how doing something in a lower gear actually takes you higher for some reason.

 

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