Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Native American Nails

Today I'd like to share my Native American-inspired nails.  My great-grandmother was Cherokee, something I didn't find out until four years ago.  I'd always wondered why I loved Native American music, regalia, dance, everything about the culture, and now I know why.

These were done in honor of a dear friend who is Cherokee/Pamunkey.  We all call her Mama Eagle Bear; this is one dedicated, hard-working lady.  She and her husband have worked very hard to raise money to help with repair costs on homes in the Pine Ridge Reservation.  Pine Ridge is the poorest reservation in America, and it's heartbreaking to know that the native people of this land are living in the utmost poverty, especially given that the government had promised assistance.  The homes are falling apart and have mold, no heat, no air conditioning, nothing.  Mama Eagle Bear has taken donations of not only money, but supplies, food, clothing, everything that the Pine Ridge people are in need of.  Needless to say, it's going to take much more to restore this reservation, but I believe it can happen.

Thank you, Mama Eagle Bear, for all that you do.  Aho.

Hope you enjoyed these, thanks for stopping by!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Batman Nails

I'm pulling this one from the archive, because lately I haven't been terribly inspired to do any major nail art. I have Chronic Epstein-Barr Virus, which is the virus that most commonly causes mono.  This is the third time I was diagnosed with mono, so I talked to my doctor and found that I have the chronic virus.  Stress causes it to reactivate, which makes sense, because the last two times I had it I was under a lot of stress.  So this is why I haven't done anything too new lately, so I'm going back into the archives.

This was my first major nerdy manicure.  I had painted all my nails yellow, then on a whim free-handed the Batman symbol.  A few days later, I thought hey, why not?  So I did Robin's costume next to the Batman symbol.  I don't think I have any pictures of the right hand, which had Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, and The Riddler on them.

This was surprisingly easy for me, and really started me on attempting more intricate nail art.  I can't say how long it took me, but I can say that I was taken by surprise at how well this turned out.  Please forgive any lack of cleanup; it was late when I was done and I was too tired/lazy to really care.

Without further ado, here is my Batman manicure (these were taken with my phone, apologies for the lack of focus):

I wish I had done the Joker, because he's my favorite villain, but I am leaving that for another time.  I want to dedicate a full hand to him.

Enjoy your day and thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Happy Hanukkah!

I love Hanukkah.  Getting to light the candles every night in remembrance of the Maccabee-led revolt against Antiochus Epiphanes and his army, and the victory G-d gave to His people, is a big blessing.  I'm not big on doing presents, or eating lots of latkes, donuts, and other fried foods as is customary.  I prefer to light the candles and thank G-d for watching over His people, for holding onto the promise He gave to Abraham.

Here's a synopsis of the story of Hanukkah:
In Israel, there was this stinkin' mean Greek named Antiochus Epiphanes ("the illumined").  He desecrated the Temple by taking all the holy implements for himself, sacrificing a pig on the altar, and installing a statue of Zeus in the Temple.  The circumcision of baby boys was banned; anyone caught performing a circumcision was immediately put to death, as well as the baby and its mother.  The Jews were no longer allowed to observe Shabbat or read the Torah.  Talk about a tyrant!  Three men, the Maccabees, wouldn't take this tyranny sitting down, so they led a revolt against Antiochus.  Even with odds at one hundred-to-one, the Maccabean army was victorious, and eventually took back the land, cleaning up the Temple and rededicating it.  Legend has it that only one druze of oil, enough to last a day, lasted eight, allowing the people time to get more oil to keep the Temple menorah lit.

The Hebrew letters on the dreidel stand for "Nes Gadol Hayah Sham – "a great miracle happened there".  It's a really fun game to play and is very easy: you start with a pot of gelt (chocolate coins) or any candy (I recommend M&Ms!).  Each player takes a turn spinning the dreidel; if it lands on Nun, you get nothing; if it lands on Gimel, you get everything in the pot; if it lands on Hei, you take half of what is in the pot; if it lands on Shin, you add a piece of candy to the pot.  Very fun!

In honor of Hanukkah, I did two separate manis.  I may  not do any more, because I'm kind of running out of ideas!  It would be cool to do one honoring the Maccabees and those who fought for their faith and for G-d.

To all those celebrating Hanukkah, chag sameach!  Happy holiday :-)

Friday, December 7, 2012

Liebster Blog Award

Well I'll be...a few days ago, two wonderful ladies totally turned my day around.  I was having a terrible, awful, "I stink at nail art" day, when I was nominated for the Liebster Blog Award.  And just now, like the goober I am, yet ANOTHER nomination came in.  I don't know what to say...I feel that I'm sort of an amateur when it comes to nail art.  I have high aspirations, I want to be able to do competitions and become the best nail tech that I can be.  I also want to be the first in my area to offer Japanese nail art.  If you haven't seen it, you should totally check it out!  It's beyond awesome, it really is.

So about the Liebster Blog Award: It’s an award that was started in Germany in order to give smaller bloggers recognition for their hard work.The award is given by a fellow blogger who sees your blog as important to them.  It's for bloggers with less than 200 followers.

Erica, Danette, Amber...I can't thank you enough!  Y'all are SO talented and way worthy of this award, more so than I feel I am, but I will not let a gift go unloved.  You three made my day more than you think!

So I get to post 11 fun facts about myself, and answer 11 questions from these three lovely, awesome ladies.  Let's begin!

Eleven fun facts:

1.  I can open doors with my feet.  Weird, but a fun parlor trick.
2.  I know how to speak Latin.
3.  I LOVE ANIME.  And comics.
4.  I have over 300 eyeshadow colors, over 50 lipsticks/glosses, and just one foundation and blush.
5.  I'm a hopeless bookworm.  I even read when I eat!
6.  I have always sympathized with the Phantom of the Opera. 
7.  I love to do creative things as a way to relax.
8.  My favorite Transformer is Sideswipe.
9.  Besides becoming a nail tech, I want to be a photographer and have my own studio.  I want to specialize in cosplay photographs.
10.  Three of my pets are named after anime characters.
11.  I'm an introvert with social anxiety, which is why email and FB are my friends!

Whoa...that was tough.  I hope you're still awake after reading that! ;-)

Here are Danette's questions:

  1. What is the one major gift you’re hoping for this year for the holidays?  Tough one!  I would say some good detail brushes and acrylic paints so I can do better nail art.
  2.  If you could only have one drink forever for the rest of your life, what would it be?  Water.  I drink a lot of water, because I can't have caffeine.
  3. What’s your favorite TV show?  My Little Pony.  Can't get any cuter than that!
  4. Do you want/have kids?  If so, how many?  I would LOVE to have children, but can't.  I would adopt maybe...six kids.  I love children and want to give a good home to children who need it.
  5. If you had to move and choose to live somewhere else forever, where would it be? And why?  Scotland!  I would love to live in the land of my ancestors and see all the awesome historical places.  Plus it would be a DREAM for this amateur photographer.
  6. What’s your favorite accessory?  Nail art.  That took me all of a second to answer!
  7. If you won the lotto, what would be the first thing you buy?  A house in the Appalachian mountains
  8. What’s the one thing in your make-up bag that you can’t live without?  My Maybelline Falsies mascara.
  9. What made you decide to start blogging?  After stalking nail art blogs regularly, I figured why not?  I combined my love of polish and writing, and voila!
  10. How many kids do you have or see yourself having?  Probably just one, but I would so want six or more kids.
  11. Sun or snow?  Snow!

And here are Erica's questions!

1.  What is your favourite movie?  Some Like it Hot
2.  What do you do for a living?  Currently just doing work-study to pay for tuition :-)
3.  If you could rename your favourite polish colour, what polish would you choose and what would you rename it?  I would go from Purple Panic (CG) to Hot Mama.
4.  What other hobbies do you have other than polishing?  Writing, photography, reading.
5.  What movie or TV show best describes your personality?  Big Bang Theory.
6.  If you could have a fictional character as your best friend, who would it be?  Sailor Moon, because she is AWESOME.
7.  What is the one thing in life you wish you could do-over?  Why?  I wish I could have expressed how much I loved my mom and grandparents before they died.
8.  What is your staple product for hand and nail care, something you can't live or leave home without?  My Deep Sea Collection body butter and cuticle oil.
9.  What is your favourite song from a movie?  Diamonds Are a Girl's Best FriendI just love the way Marilyn sang that!
10.  What is your favourite type/style of nail art?  Freehand, definitely.  I feel more accomplished when I can freehand something difficult, and it comes out beautifully.
11.  What super power do you wish you had?  Why?  Shadowcat's ability to phase through walls.  I would rescue animals that way.
Last, but not least, Amber's questions!

  1. What is your favorite brand of polish?  OPI...I love the names they give to the polishes, and the brushes and formula are just outstanding!
  2. Do you have any pets?  Yes!  I have a Boston Terrier (Kayla), a Jack Russell (Spryte), two parakeets (Bulma and Broly), and a betta fish (Kamina). 
  3. How many polishes do you own?  About...115, give or take.
  4. What is the color you want most right now, but can't have?  OPI Barre My Soul.  It's the best for French manicures!
  5. What is your favorite TV show?  My Little Pony! 
  6. Favorite food?  Venison fajitas *drool*
  7. What is your worst habit?  Popping my knuckles.
  8. What is your dream career?  To be a competition-winning nail technician.
  9. What is the strangest talent you have?  Opening doors with my feet!
  10. What is your favorite song?  Tough one!  Right now, it's Sinead by Within Temptation.
  11. Who is your celebrity crush?  Funny enough, I don't have one!  If I did, it would be Gerard Butler. 
And now for my eleven questions:
1.  If you could only have one polish for the rest of your life, which one would it be?
2.  How did you get started on polish and nail art?
3.  What is your favorite scent?
4.  Indie polish or big name polish?
5.  If you could have anything in the world, what would it be?
6.  Who is your favorite actor/actress?
7.  Chocolate or vanilla?
8.  What is your favorite wintertime treat?
9.  What is your go-to polish color?
10.  If you could paint a celebrity's nails, who would it be?
11.  Would you or have you used gel polish, and did you like it?

Done!  Now here are the 11 bloggers I nominate for this award.  Each one is just amazing and totally deserves this!

Polish Gone Crazy:
Finger Food:
Nail Engineer:
Partly Cloudy With A Chance of Lacquer (love love love that blog name!)
Polished And Glittered:
Janet Planet Nails:
Polish Insomnia:
No Naked Nails:

Argh...I hope I will be given leniency for just eight.  I honestly started this post a few days ago and had a "relapse"...I have chronic Epstein-Barr virus, and the fatigue really got to me, plus I had a hectic couple of days of work study and services to do.

Thank you to the ladies who were so sweet and really made my day!  I hope this gets out to the lovely nominees I have listed <3.