Friday, July 20, 2012

The Friday Forum - July 20

I love agapanthus. I can grow them unless we have a wicked cold winter. That didn't happen last winter, but I lost mine a few winters ago. I think it was the one when we had six feet of snow. The cool blue is refreshing and coordinates beautifully with daylilies. I'm always envious of Florida gardeners in agapanthus blooming season.

This has been a crazy week. Mom is not doing well, and I'm worried. She's extremely weak and confused. A couple of weeks ago, her blood calcium dropped. That's not a good thing. Her doctor increased her vitamin D dose, and, two weeks later, on Monday, her blood calcium was too high. I am taking steps to withhold vitamin D to bring the calcium back into range, but it's not happening fast enough for my comfort level. Unfortunately, Mom's doctor went on vacation and "can't be reached." I don't like the fact that the doctors covering for her don't know Mom from Adam's house cat. Nurses and physicians, help! Her blood calcium was high, but not grossly high. How fast can I expect it to come down by withholding Calcitriol? BTW, she has no thyroid or parathyroid glands - one reason balancing her is so difficult. Anyhow, you may have noticed that I only posted one feature yesterday. That's why. I've been at Mom's house for a long time after work this week. I'm thinking I may have to take Mom to the ER later today just to get help. At the very least, I have to ask a lab go to her house to get a metabolic panel.

I am frustrated that I can't show you photos of the newest Estée Lauder Violet Underground Collection. I don't know where others have gotten the photos, but I will not "steal them" from another blogger. My usual Estée Lauder source has not made them available, even though the display of the collection is dotting the counter landscape. The collection is "interesting" - actually very pretty for anyone who can wear those colors. The only pieces that "sing to me" are the lip colors.

I was very pleased to be able to show you the Chantecaille Fall 2012 Collection. It's the best one I've seen, and I'm thrilled that The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, one of my favorite charities, is the beneficiary of this fall's L'Éléphant Palette.

Anyhow, I hope to catch up this weekend. I have plenty to show you, from skin care and fragrance to makeup.This weekend, I will be returning one item that arrived this week from Sephora. The two lipsticks I received looked like someone had opened them and run the tips into the covers. Heat? Maybe, but I don't want makeup that looks sampled or used. Walls brought up melting lipsticks in the comments this week. It's unfortunate that some products cannot survive the mail trip in 100-degree heat. When it's that hot, those UPS and USPS trucks are even hotter. No wonder things melt. My favorite chocolate maker, Fran's Chocolates on the West Coast, will not ship ground during the summer. Glad a local gourmet store has my grey salt caramels!

I'm excited about the Sisley master class I'll attend Saturday. Neiman Marcus at Tysons Galleria is having a special event with national trainer Anita Bahramy (I adore her and can't wait to see her again). It's a master class and will be held off the floor before special, personalized one-on-one's are provided. If you're local to the DC area and have ever wondered about this fabulous line - skin care, makeup, and fragrance - it would be a great time to go learn. Just call the Sisley counter at (703) 761-1600, extension 3230, to make an appointment. I'll be there. I wouldn't miss an Anita visit.

Don't forget this week's giveaway contest for the Sephora Favorites Glitz & Glam deluxe makeup sampler. Someone is going to win a cool set of products to make her glow. The deadline is Saturday, July 21, at midnight.

Photo courtesy of


bisbee said...

CG - so sorry to hear about your mother - it very worrisome, especially with her Dr. away! Always at the wrong time...

I unfortunately lost both of my parents many years ago, but I still remember that feeling in my stomach before I called first thing in the morning to find out how things had gone overnight.

It's a good thing to have your beauty interests to take your mind off every once in a keeps you sane!

Take care, and enjoy the class tomorrow...I'm getting a long-awaited facial - just hoping it goes well (new esthetician)...

Kate said...

Hi Charlestongirl,

I am so sorry to hear about your mother. How frustrating that her doctor is away, and you are having a hard time getting things regulated. Hopefully you can get her in to see a doctor, or maybe get her admitted through the ER. If she is admitted, at least they can monitor her more closely to see if they can regulate those things.

Beauty-wise, I received my Lip Creme duo from LMdB's Haute House Hues in Two Lips and Mum's the Word. I really like them. I prefer wearing Two Lips alone, or the two colors layered. I do like Mum's the Word, and have worn that by itself on occasion. But they are a lovely duo. Great pigmentation and good staying power, too. I will say I noticed both lip cremes smelled a little "off" when I received them. Almost as if they had started to "turn" a little. Since you mentioned products sitting on those hot delivery trucks, I almost wonder if that affected the formula a little, causing the slightly unpleasant smell.

I did order the LMdB Fresh Creme Tint in Mystique, as well as their eyelash curler. I have never used an eyelash curler before, so I am excited. Also, I have been on the hunt for a very cool-toned pink blush, so Mystique fit the bill nicely. And given how much I love Poppy, I am sure I will love this shade just as much.

The heat is just terrible. Here in Illinois, we are in the midst of a terrible draught. My husband is a commodity trader, and he is predicting sky-high meat prices due to the low yield for the crops. I think it is safe to say we will be stocking up on beef before the prices start to shoot up. I also read that the national weather agencies are predicting this heat and dryness to last into October. Fall is my absolute favorite time of year, and the thought of this heat ruining the fall for me is so depressing. We had almost no fall last year, and barely a winter. I am sure everyone is sick of people griping about the heat, but I swear the heat got to my brain!

I sincerely hope things turn around for your mom. Both of you have been through so much lately. Don't worry if your posts are intermittent; we will understand and be right here waiting for you when things return to normal!

Have a great weekend, everyone!


Walls said...

Sorry to hear about your mother's health, Charlestongirl. Will be sending positive thoughts and prayers your way.

Evelyn said...

Hi Charlestongirl,

I hope things settle down for your mom. The doctors should be twice as attentive with a new patient since they are covering for a colleague. You just have to do what is best for your mom even if that requires knocking a few heads together. :)

No exciting makeup purchases this week, just picked up some Alterna hair products. I also put in an order at Nordstrom's for a few things I've had my eye on including the new Eyes to Kill #24. It just drew me in. I finally got a chance to wear Armani's bronze face palette that I bought this summer when I went to the ballet this week so that was fun. lol

I need to keep going out to work through all my makeup! However when it's 100 in the shade in NYC there's no point, it all melts off my face. *sigh*

lovethescents said...

I've been slow to get through to your blog today, C-girl, and wish I had sooner. Of course everything's out of whack without her thyroid and parathyroid. Difficult to maintain balance, especially if she might be resistant to taking Boost/Ensure, etc. I wish you the very best of luck and strength, dear C-girl.

No fun beauty news. My baby girl found my decant of Mona's Rose and went through half of it. She smells wonderful.

I've been fighting with my hair. It's thin, curly, frizzy, lifeless, and I only have about 5 hairs to start with. I need a miracle, not a miracle product, I've decided! :-)

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Bisbee,

I am hoping to go to that class. I'm sorry about your parents. Having lost my father, I've lived through all the scary times. Maybe it's making me stronger this time.

Charlestongirl said...

Thanks, Kate.

It is hard to keep Mom regulated all the time, but once a critical value goes "off," it's terrible. The last time she was hospitalized, it was over blood sodium. Now, we have a calcium issue. I talked to the doctor (a nephrologist) today, and he gave me instructions for what to do. He thinks she's even dehydrated, so we are pouring fluids down her. :) Thanks for the sweet wishes for Mom.

If the LMdB lip products smelled, return them! I had to return one recently. I smelled like mildew.

We are seven inches down on rainfall for the year. Crops are dying. I heard a farmer interviewed this week, and it is bad. I feel for all the farmers. It's bad for the animals too.

Be careful with that eyelash curler. Don't overdo it. :) You'll look bug-eyed.

Charlestongirl said...

Thank you, Walls. We could use a bit of divine intervention right now.

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Evelyn,

I don't think it's much fun to think about makeup when it's 100 degrees out. Fortunately, mine doesn't melt off.

I've had experience with the docs who cover for Mom's doctor, and I don't like them. I was able to get to a nephrologist I do like, and I feel better about talking to him. Normally, a covering doc should be fine, but when their accent is so thick I can't understand them, it's no good. :)

Enjoy your nice Armani!

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Lovethescents, I like that idea. She will take chocolate Ensure. I will go buy some on the way over to her house at dinner. Thanks!

Unknown said...

I'm sorry you are going through such tough times. I hope things start improving with your mother. You must be so frustrated and upset. Make sure you take time to yourself to stay sane. We will always be here. ;-)

Mary Ann said...

Hi Charlestongirl,
I'm sorry to hear about your mother.
Glad the nephrologist was able to help you. I am not a nurse, but work for a doctor, when our doc is away we still have access to a patients records, so I am sure the staff could consult the covering doc about your mother. You keep calling them, that's what they are there for.

MoonRae said...

Sending light and prayers...


Clarisse said...

Charlestongirl! I'm so,so sorry to hear the fragile balance achieved in your Mom's healthis upset and you are back in the worries!
I send all my best wishes, lots of positive thoughts and my prayers for both of you!
I'm sure you'll enjoy the delightful Sisley break (it will be a blessing during one hour!)

HélèneSud said...

I'm french and I want to apologize for the way in which I write in english : to speak in english is easier for me than to write !!!
(Ok now that I've introduce myself...)
I'm a new "reader" of your blog and I do appreciate it : great pleasure to come and "visit" you !!!!
I hope that your Mum feels better !
see you soon
great hugs from South of France

Eileen said...

Dear Charlestongirl, I am so sorry your mom has taken a downturn. I imagine the crazy, extreme weather you've been having has played a part in exacerbating problems with what was already extremely fragile health. Such climatic conditions are notoriously hard on the elderly and infirm. Our bodies are such finely tuned and delicately balanced machines that are easily affected by turmoil of all sorts. You have proven time and again that you are a devoted, caring, and loving daughter so you'll do what needs to be done to get your mom comfortable and stabilized. In the meantime, all our prayers, positives thoughts, and good wishes are with you and your mom. Take extra special good care of yourself, dear Charlestongirl. You are A JEWEL BEYOUND PRICE.

Hi HélèneSud,

Bienvenu! Although the blog is titled Best Things in Beauty, I think all of Charlestongirl's readers would agree that the very best thing is actually her :-) Her blog has brought together an exceptional group of readers from around the world. You'll soon feel just like one of the family.

Hi Everyone,

Ah! Sweet beauty! I absolutely adore my Lumière D'Artifices Beiges. I've been wearing it everyday. I apply it on the high points of my face (and sometimes all over) and on my décolleté with my Louise Young giant fan brush. It gives my fair complexion a lovely, light, sun-kissed glow that is luminous without being sparkly. It also works so beautifully with other bronzers and blushers. Perfection! I would love to see Chanel work this formula and finish into a product a bit lighter for winter.

So, what do you all think of Mon Shu? When I think of the sophistication of Chanel's fall collection and then compare it to Uncle Karl's Shu Uemura collaboration, it is hard to believe that they're coming from the same creative mastermind. I find Mon Shu (I love the play on words) to be contrieved in that Tokidoki-Hello Kitty sort of way which is fun, but terribly juvenile. I mentioned on Gaia's blog that it was like they decided to resurrect Little Miss toiletries. I guess our favorite uncle is feeling playful. It's all good in my book, though, because I have Holiday 2012 to dream about :-)

I hope all of you who have been sweltering in the heat soon get some respite. After last week's heat wave, the temps have now leveled off to their normal summer levels in my area. The daytime high has averaged about 80F with plenty of sun, bright blue sky, and a gentle breeze. Now if only we can get some rain for the farmers and ranchers. This drought is a brutal one. Can we all say, "Global warming!"

Have a wonderful and restful weekend everyone. Take it easy as we move into the dog days of summer.

Charlestongirl said...

Hi PP,

Thanks! She is a tad better today. I'm relieved, but we've got a ways to go.

Charlestongirl said...

Thanks, Mary Ann.

I just don't like the covering docs. Otherwise, I would have been OK talking to them. I was happy to talk to a doc who treated Mom recently. He was so nice to talk to me and helped me avoid an ER visit.

Charlestongirl said...

Thank you, Sharon and Clarisse!

Charlestongirl said...

Hi HélèneSud!

Nice to meet you! Your English is a whole lot better than my French! :) Thank you.

How's the weather? I know it was cold and rainy in Europe. I hope you got summer back.

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Eileen,

We leveled off here a bit last week. I'm convinced that we have global warming, but not from the brutal summer. More by the melting ice caps.

Go Guerlain shopping! I just got some of the fall colors. Not all of them showed up, but a few came with the display.