Wednesday, December 29, 2004

I made a Chinese Bun

This is called a Chinese Bun. And I'm wearing my Chinese dress. Posted by Hello

Last night I finally decided to put some almond oil on my ends right before bedtime; a generous but not heavy application. I was surprised that my hair had absorbed most of it by morning. My head seemed so content that I decided to do a scalp wash so the ends could just be themselves today. Went to Bible study wearing my hair in a bun with my new Buddha hair stick and my husband's overalls. I used bobby pins to secure my bun to ensure I wouldn't have to touch it or adjust it at all during the study. Perish the thought that anyone might know that I fuss over my hair as much as I do.

I learned how to make a Chinese Bun from instructions at The Styling Station.

Poor quality photo, but shows length

Terrible picture, bad flash, but it's all I have tonight. Posted by Hello

I'll delete this pic after I get something better. It's not desirable when the front door looks better than your hair.

Awhile back I sewed a satin pillowcase and I thought it might get ruined in the laundry but it came out perfectly fine. My hair likes satin. I like satin! On the nights I oil I just use a cotton pillow case, but other nights I use the satin. What I like about the satin too is that it doesn't make my cowlick stick straight up in the mornings. Cowlicks are so dorky when they stand straight up. I guess some things you never grow out of.

I was impressed by the nicest quote today at the Long Hair Community. A lady named Wholeheart Mom commented on MemSahib's lovely new silver hair sig pic and, referring to the generous grey distributed throughout Carla's long hair, she said it appeared as though the Master of the Universe (God) highlighted her hair, and did a marvelous job. Is that a unique sentiment or what. I thought Wholeheart Mom must be a poetess to express herself with such eloquence. Her statement reverberated through my mind all day. I asked her if I could use her words and she said sure. Next time my old dad starts telling me I would look so much better if I'd tint my hair, I'll enlighten him with this delightful repartee.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

January measure-in coming up

My official measurer, my little boy, says I am three lines away from number 30 on the measuring tape. I'm debating using 29 and 5/8 or rounding down to an even 29.5 for my official measure-in measurement on Saturday, January 1st.

My husband tried to take 3 month photos of my hair tonight but my doggone camera takes awful indoor pics. The flash is far too harsh and washes everything out. We took a photo with me standing in the foyer at the front door and the oak doors came out simply fabulous. My hair on the other hand was blindingly stark, drab, and lacked all detail due to the flash. Pooh. Now I have to wait to take photos outside in the lame old backyard.

Washed my hair tonight especially for picture taking. Now the wash routine is completely out the window for the week, and I have not even one single good photo to use.

It looks like my ends are in need of a little clean up. I might use Feye's trim method.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Pondering hair and head coverings

I really liked Girl With a Pearl Earring. Based on the book authored by Tracy Chevalier, this film and the painting by Johannes Vermeer captivate my imagination.

The author of the book names the girl Griet (pronounced 'Greet') and Griet keeps her hair covered at all times. The very act of covering her hair causes it to become a forbidden fruit of sorts. (Thus, my interest in ordering a scarf and learning to create the Jerusalem Twist.) I have no intention of keeping my own hair covered at all times, but I am intrigued by the idea, the effect, and the significance of the covering of a woman's head.

The Bible addresses the practice of veiling in 1Corinthians 11:1-16. These verses are among the most controversial in the Bible. No where else in the Bible are head coverings discussed in detail.

Two separate issues come to the fore. One is the issue of authority and the other is the issue of modesty. In 1Cor 11:3 we read that man is the head of woman, just as Christ is the head of man and God is the head of Christ. This (exceedingly briefly) sums up the matter of authority. The time that Apostle Paul is addressing the Christians in the city of Corinth is around 55 A.D., a time when all respectable Hebrew women wore veils over their heads when they went out in public. What Paul was saying is that women should wear such veils when they worship. (The Adventure Bible, Zondervon, 1985 p. 1267.) This (exceedingly briefly) sheds light upon the modesty issue.

The one and only verse I have memorized is Thessalonians 5:17, "Pray without ceasing." For me, I couldn't really wear a head covering because I'd need to be able to put it on often or wear it all day. And when Paul referred to head coverings did he mean a full covering like entire head as well as the face, or all of the hair but the face can show, or most of the hair with some hair peeking out in front, or would a cap do? It's open to interpretation. And it depends on local custom. Even among the Amish the size and style of the head covering varies.

And women have a natural inclination to want to be attractive. We're hard wired that way. I lost the page but I read a testimony about head covering where a woman noted that it was not uncommon for young women to primp and ask how their tails looked, meaning they wanted to be sure their scarves were arranged to look pretty. The chick factor is inescapable.

I do like head coverings on women. When I see a woman with a head covering, I know it's an outward sign of an inward attitude and I have a lot of respect and admiration for that. At the market I see women who wear traditional hijabs. They look so pretty. When we were traveling in Montana last year we saw a very large family, must have been ten children, sit down in a restaurant and every single girl wore a small white cap and they were dressed very plainly. They were friendly too.

So I'm thinking about keeping my hair up, though uncovered, all the time.

I'm just pondering hair and head coverings tonight.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Missed my hair slide on Ebay

I waited three days to bid on the hair slide I wanted then completely forgot to bid. (I always like to bid at the last minute.) Now I have to wait another six days. I missed my item all because I was wrapped up in watching the Lakers play the Miami Heat. Lakers lost in overtime.

I'd post a link to my desired hair slide but I dare not lest some long hair grrrl tries to outbid me on it. I'll show it when I buy it. It's unusual.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Compliment on my hair from a Goth Girl!

I came home from Sav-On all atwitter. I'm a mess but I had to get a couple money holders for my nephews so I left the house after only finger combing my hair and pinning it in a loose bun. I didn't even brush my teeth. I'm wearing jeans, workboots, and my ugliest black fleece top with pills all over it.

At the register while I was trying to get my debit card to work the cashier said "I like your hair." I was surprised, first just at getting a compliment and second, that it was from such a young girl. She had long jet black hair, white skin, and heavy but pretty eye make-up. I told her lots of people don't like grey hair at all and she was so sweet. She said she liked how the grey shined like highlights and she liked the streak. I hadn't noticed the way it was pulled back accentuated a streak near my temple. She went on and on. It's wasn't just a single sentence and the end. I could feel my face go blushing.

I asked her if she visited the long hair boards and she said no. So that means this is a bonifide compliment from someone entirely unschooled, unaffected, by the great grey hair debate.

Maybe the Lord looked down and said "Send old Liliana a compliment today because she looks like she needs it."

Anywho, I feel like getting fixed up and doing something now. I'm absolutely certain that the only reason I've gotten any compliments on this hair is due to deep conditioning with oils and my new hair care routine that I learned from The Loom and The Mane Board. And I believe the compliment came from the Goth Girl because she is the type of individual who doesn't buy in to commonly held conceptions regarding commonly accepted standards of beauty.

Tomorrow is family visit day. When I need it, I will think of that girl, her face, and her words.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Billowing silk and stunning hair

We rented a DVD called Hero. It's Chinese (Mandarin) with subtitles in English. At first I saw sword fighting and thought, ugh, martial arts (a guy movie). Then I caught sight of Maggie Cheung. Her beauty in the film is positively intoxicating.

If you like silk, and you like hair, and you like to see them both blowing in the wind, rent this movie. The cinematography is exquisite.

Monday, December 20, 2004

All desire for Pantene evaporated

I now embark upon my fourth week of two hair washes per week. Things are copacetic. My ends are doing quite well. Yesterday I ventured out and about to do errands with my hair freshly washed, blow dried very straight and down, and I got a couple corner-of-the-eye second looks at the market and at a restaurant. This is a good sign.

I just couldn't wait till January 1st and I measured. I'm at 29 inches now. Soon I'll be in a whole new set of tens! Wow. I'd be thrilled if I got a whole inch of growth this month but it's unlikely. It happened once that I know of though.

After an entire month I can honestly say my desire for Pantene conditioner has evaporated. I'm still Pantene free and sulfate free. In place of the Pantene I'm using Paves conditioner and strictly oils. I use a smidgen of jojoba during the week and then heavy olive oil conditioning twice per week (overnight before I wash).

Saturday, December 18, 2004

Belly dance student in a belly dance troupe

I was quite afraid to go to troupe practice because it's far and I have trouble with driving directions and because the world is so full of danger I never venture out at night. My husband said he'd take me and asked where the class will be and I told him. But he wanted an exact specific address. Men. So I found the address. It turns out they rehearse at the Senior Citizen's Community Center. My husband said, "Honey I don't think there will be much mayhem at the senior center." Okay, that's probably true.

There was a different teacher, new dances and I was overwhelmed. They did about three dances: Hadouni (the one my teacher choreographed), lead and follow, and a cane dance. I was out of step, off count, and graceful as a three-legged camel. I'm going back for more.

What I especially like about this dance and these classes is that there were women of all ages and sizes and all are welcomed into the fold equally. Of the ten dancers present about three are very, very good. The rest are about like me. Well, like me except they know the steps. With persistence and practice I will learn them too. My teacher says, "The dance reveals the dancer." I like that.

I have yet to decide how to assimilate my belly dancing with my Christianity. Notice, I did not say I'm deciding how to assimilate my belly dancing with my faith. It's just that I haven't yet met a professed Christian belly dancer. Is saying you're a Christian belly dancer like a saying you're a bartender for Jesus? If so, then Houston I've got a problem.

I know I will choose modest attire but that's not due to any measure of religiosity but mere personal preference. Though many of the older women show their bellies, that's not for me. I have a fair tummy but I already had my day in the sun so to speak. I will prefer to be lovely, modest, and attempt to be an example of mature semi-beauty. That's my plan anyway.

Friday, December 17, 2004

Thinking about hiking and driving hair

This morning we went to The Desert Museum and hiked up a mountain in Palm Springs. Well, maybe it was a very big hill. There were lots of switchbacks and it was rated as a strenuous hike. Above is a photo of the view part ways up. First we ate breakfast at the best breakfast restaurant in P.S. which is Elmer's. (Don't go there on a Sunday morning though. Long lines.)

The drive and the hike made me realize I must soon decide what to do with this hair on long trips. We'll be putting in some long driving days to get to Alaska and the leather seat is not kind on my hair. I didn't used to much care, but now I do. Maybe I should try making a satin bun cover. Maybe a snood. A driving snood! Even an hour drive messed up my bun today.

For belly dance class I had to wash my bangs. My hair got very sweaty and dusty dirty today so I made a part and brought a small amount of hair around my face forward (knotted the rest in a bun and covered with a plastic baggie) to wash it. I felt and looked much better. I have a pretty new sparkly silver barrette that I put in just for looks above my braided bun tonight.

We danced an actual choreographed dance tonight. Thank heaven for epinephines! Once they kicked in I had a great time, but I nearly went home because I thought I just didn't have in in me, and why shame myself in front of others. I didn't go to troupe practice last week because, well, I chickened out. But tonight I am renewed. Aziza said I did well picking up the routine and she gave me a complete music CD with the song on it (our song is 3 minutes and 50 seconds in length). I acted calm on the outside, but I was delighted on the inside that she decided to give me the music her dancers are dancing to. I am encouraged.

Tomorrow night is a fresh chance for me to attend troupe rehearsal and to not chicken out.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

I sewed a satin pillowcase for myself

I finally cut and sewed my white satin fabric. It made a pretty pillowcase and I'm happy to baby my hair, but I'm sorry to say it's not especially photogenic. I also realized I didn't check the bolt of fabric before I bought it to ensure it's washable. Hope I don't end up with a ten inch ball of wrinkled pillowcase after it goes through the washer and dryer.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Ordered a scarf today

I ordered a head scarf! I've really been wanting one and the selection at the mall wasn't very attractive or unique, so I settled on this one at Headcovers Unlimited. The site is geared toward people with illnesses that cause them to lose their hair but they have such a pretty inventory. If I like it and it works for me, I will also get this one at

My husband wondered why I'd want a scarf and I told him it might be good for days when I don't like my hair. My big hoop earrings will go perfectly too. And when we begin our travels through North America in May 2005 in our 24' trailer it may be ideal for dusty, dirty camping hair. Our first stop is Alaska. We tried to get there last summer, but at Mile Zero of the Alaskan Highway our money ran out. Had to come home.

This time we're selling the house and getting rid of a lot of stuff before we go. We'll store our money in a tin can.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Deep conditioning with olive oil

I bought olive oil at the market on sale, half off the regular price. I've heard it's heavier than sweet almond oil. From earlobes to ends, I loaded my hair up with a very generous application on Saturday night, pinned it into a sloppy, knotted, braided bun and went to sleep looking forward to leisurely washing it out in the morning before church. Duh. Husband wakes me up at 9:00am with 30 minutes to get ready to go.

Anyway, the conditioning quality of the olive oil is good. The odor, while it is mild, is stronger than the almond oil in my opinion. This week I inadvertently over oiled my ends, and in doing so caused it to look greasier between washings than if I had used the jojoba more sparingly. I still stuck to my Wednesday and Sunday hair washing regimen though! I'm so glad I found the whole long hair care microcosm on the WWW. My hair is doing well because of it and so is my psyche.

So now I'm experienced with jojoba, sweet almond, coconut, and olive oils. I think that might be all for me. I don't see that I need very many oils.

Lord, how will you use me today?

Saturday morning I opened my eyes and wished the day would go away. Closed my eyes and opened them again and the day was still there. So I did what I do every single morning and asked the Lord how He would use me this day.

I was basically a blob most of the day. I messed around with my hair. On Saturdays I'm fairly looking forward to washing on Sunday morning but I did get it to look nice in another low bun. I'm into low buns lately. That was my whole morning. By 1:00pm I fixed myself some toast and coffee. Got on my computer and noodled around. Looked out the window and there's my husband and son on their hands and knees working in the front yard pulling up weeds after they had spent the morning putting up Christmas lights. Pass me a big plate of guilt. I knew had to do something with lazy self but not housework which I have plenty of to do.

Instead I went to the bookshelf and dug out the cookbook and wrote down all the ingredients for pasta primavera, a dish I just learned to make and one my husband likes a lot. It has many good veggies in it like broccoli, snow peas, carrots. I went to the market and bought all the ingredients and totally lucked out because for some reason hardly anyone was at the grocery store so I was in and out quickly and got front row parking to boot. And that's not all. Our little boy was with me and I took him to the fabric shop and he selected three different flannels for me to sew him three more pairs of pajamas. So, tada, I had accomplished two things for other people by days end. That's worth something. At the fabric store I did slip in one yard of white satin at $4.99 a yard to make myself a pillowcase. Satin is supposed to be gentle on hair. The satin has been lying in the middle of the living room floor for 36 hours now. All I have to do is get over there and cut it out.

Lord, how will you use me today?

I asked the Lord how he would use me this morning and His reply went beyond cooking a favorite meal or making pajamas.

My husband and his children from his first marriage have been estranged for many years. All communication stopped long ago for reasons which are ultimately between them and I don't fully understand. There was much history before I met my husband since I'm a third wife. But despite whatever transpired, as a child of divorce myself I well know that divorce is unpleasant business and the children get shortchanged.

After dinner at about 6:30pm I was washing dishes and there was a knock at the door. I heard talking and figured it was a solicitor that my husband would send away. I went back to the dirty dishes and then my husband says, "Look who's here."

In the middle of our family room stood a tall, attractive, well manicured woman in a tan, tailored, sleeveless dress, short brown hair, and high heels. She was smiling at me expectantly. Considering we practically never have guests of any size or shape in our house I didn't recognize her, but her smile was so broad, and my husband's so wide, that I got a sense that something was expected of me. But what? Who was it? Suddenly it dawned on me. It was Juli! She's my husband's eldest daughter; age 38 now. The last time we laid eyes on her was 20 years ago.

We, or rather they, talked for hours. It's an utter shame how years are lost due of misunderstandings and anger. Juli poured out her heart. My husband cried, and she cried, and I cried too. I think everyone has a new perspective now.

Since the Lord works in us and through us, my usefulness to my husband will be to encourage continued contact. I don't know if things will be fixed or if things will be renewed, but I am optimistic for them. We plan to invite Juli and her family over for a meal. She's married now and has a little boy. I'm not a good cook. I'm a bad cook and guests make me anxious. But it's not about the food, and it's not about me.

Saturday, December 11, 2004


I told my husband I actually have a tiny number of return visitors coming to my new journal. I told him I suspected my readers are a very few, very devoted, yet very deeply disturbed group of people.

He gazed up towards the kitchen ceiling and said, "Yes, there's a symmetry to that."

The frailties of the humans

Riding up the escalator I could hear but not see, someone was coughing or choking, and a woman's voice obviously in a state of alarm was saying, "Shall I call someone, shall I call 911?" I made my turn and quickly moved past the two rationalizing to myself that the woman seemed to be recovering now. Then, she distinctly looked up and made eye contact with me. It was not to be a clean escape for me. I quickly diverted my eyes and walked on. Did she suffer from asthma, have a panic attack, was she choking? Why didn't I take two minutes out of my time to simply go over, offer a word of comfort, put my arm around her for a second, exhibit any tiny bit of emotion? I don't know. I just walked by. She was probably embarrassed about choking in front of everyone and I should have stopped to inquire as to her well-being. If my husband had seen this happening he would have stopped. That's the way he is. If I had walked by the man lying on the road would I be like the Good Samaritan? (Luke 10:29-37) Doesn't look like it. I had a bad feeling at the very instant that I did it. Is there a pounding my head against the wall emoticon?

Then in Macy's dressing room I overhead a young woman, a retail clerk who I'd guess to be about 19 or 20, talking to a customer who was very frail and sitting down. The elderly lady had health issues, I forget what they were, but I was struck when I overhead the young lady tell the elderly woman that she had had colon cancer and she proudly announced that she was now a survivor. She said she got a check-up every six months to ensure her body was cancer free. By looking at her you would never have guessed that she'd fought, and won, against a life threatening illness.

At my Sunday night fellowship meeting there's a woman, a mother of two, whose 5 1/2 year old son was born with cancer. How does a child get born with cancer? He's healthy and well now but when she shared her heart wrenching account of what they had gone through at the hospital and in their family, there was not a dry eye in the room. She looks like a regular mom. I'd never have guessed by looking at her that she'd gone through such a trial.

Life is so tenuous. Everyone has a story. People I see, people I pass by every single day, people I'm too busy to talk to, embody wonderful and fearful stories that I don't even know about. I walk by, completely unaware.

Friday, December 10, 2004

A compliment on my hair!

I received a compliment on my hair last night. In real life. In real time.

A gal in my dance class, a very smart lawyer to boot, said my hair was pretty. A compliment like this is a rarity for me. And that's not all. She went on to say it gave me grace. What? Me? Grace? I'm still on cloud nine. She has no idea what a sweetheart she is in my book now and forever or that my blog is How weird is that. It's like, cosmic.

My hair was in a braided bun. I always wear it up to my belly dance class. It was sprinkled throughout with five miniature sparkly claw clips that I found on my recent shopping trip - the shopping trip of torture.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

I have prevailed. Infinity bun done.

Insurgent attacks threaten to delay upcoming elections in Iraq, U.S. students fare badly in international survey of math skills, and worst of all Karl Malone isn't coming back to the Lakers. It wasn't a great news day.

But here's a pic of my first 'Infinity Bun.' It could be called a 'Lazy Eight' too, but infinity sounds classier. The infinity sign was first used by John Wallis, an English mathematician (he lived from 1616-1703) who was friends with Isaac Newton. There seems to be some supposition regarding whether he borrowed it from the Romans or the Greeks.

I tried and tried to get my hair to do this a couple months ago but my ends were too thick so it required way too many bobby pins to hold it in place, then it would self destruct anyway. Determination, plus 50 attempts in 90 minutes, have paid off.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Two washes per week routine - good start

Last week I did indeed follow through on my two washes per week plan. I went all the way from Wednesday to Sunday morning with the same hair.

I've been raised up to believe that I should shampoo daily and if I don't I'm not exercising proper hygiene, so I thought I'd feel grimy but go figure. I didn't really. I was fully anticipating that my scalp would get itchy in which case I would immediately cease and desist and run for a hot shower but, no itch. By Saturday it was necessary to keep it in a bun tight to my head to disguise the oiliness but that's to be expected.

Something did up though. On Saturday I noticed...odor. Yikes. Definitely objectionable.

I'm somewhat unique in that about the only place I sweat is on my head. Weird I know. In 5th grade the kids in El Centro called me La Red Mamasota during recess. In college I used to be envious of girls in dance class who sweat under their arms, on their back, or between their breasts. Me, I sweat on my head and face, and that's the sum of it. To offset the lack of sweat (which other people are amazed by) I get a really bright red face. Real attractive. I couldn't avoid sweating on my head at belly dance class on Thursday, then during my own at-home work-out on Friday. This made my scalp smell. Anybody close to me would be able to detect it.

So I applied some grapefruit essential oil to my fingertips and rubbed it into my scalp for about five minutes. It helped immensely. It was not overpowering in the least and it eradicated the odor. Five gold stars go to grapefruit essential oil, $4.95 for .5 ounces.

I have a pic of day three unwashed hair. You'll see it wasn't that bad. This photo is also noteworthy because finally, finally I can make an attractive everyday low bun. I realized that if I don't wind so tightly and if I hold it in place just right while I put in bobby pins, it looks nice. In the past I simply could not bear to wear a low bun because it gave me that school marm look.

My bangs did require washing every day, but those are a cinch to do in the sink.

Saturday, December 04, 2004

The Madora comb is IN!

What's so big about combs? Not the untrained eye. But there exists a whole 'nother realm of combs in the comb world that you may not be aware of.

If you want real long hair, real healthy hair, why then you need to baby it. I've always used combs from the market that cost me, hmmm, maybe $1.99. They did the job just fine. But you see, if you look closely you will see seams. Check it out. Each and every tooth on your comb may show a seam from the plastic molding. If these seams are present they can tear your hair, or at the very least scrape every individual hair the whole way down. You want to avoid this. As Heidi says, you must treat your hair like fine lace. It is a fiber. Heidi would know on account of she has hair almost to the floor.

This new Madora comb is seamless. It seems to be made of plastic and I wish I knew what kind, but it has a solid feel to it. It's handmade in Switzerland. It's a pretty ivory color and I can see striations in it - added purely for looks. I need to get that Hello! software so I can upload a really big photo of it so you can view the striations. Okay, enough with the text, on to photos...

It was made in Switzerland, I ordered it from New York.  It shipped via ground transport.

The UPS man left it at my door. I love packages.

New and old comb comparison.

The back of the Madora has an indentation for your hand hold.

The Madora has a bit more space between the teeth. The bottoms of the teeth are larger than my old comb.

A hardworking comb.

Madora and the babies.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Happy December!

I now own ... an archive.

Three gifts

We give our son three gifts from us for Christmas. We decided on three because Jesus received gifts from three Wise Men. It's worked out well. It helps us stay focused and avoid the chaos and materialism that is rampant in the U.S. this time of year.

We spent Christmas in Tahiti once and it changed our attitude toward Christmas and the whole holiday season. We used to spend, spend, spend, and rush, rush, rush just like everybody. But in Tahiti they don't do that. It's much more simple. It gave us pause to examine and reflect upon what we were doing and why.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

I intend to wash two days a week

It's been decided. I will wash my hair two times a week, on Wednesdays and Sundays, just like Avrilon! She has such pretty hair. I'll never look like an Avrilon, I have no chance, but I still have aspirations. She's 53 and still very cool as her photos clearly show. I think she has the face of a model though she's never mentioned modeling. It seems like everybody who is anybody who has long, long hair, washes only once or twice a week, not daily.  I want to get with the program.

My DSL went on the fritz for a day and a half. That was horrible. Couldn't access lessons, couldn't access email, couldn't access the blog. They had to fix the line out on the main street.

I had worn my hair in the same French braid for two solid days (must have been because I had no DSL) so this morning I popped awake and did a scalp wash, blow dried, mixed some jojoba and grapefruit EO, brushed through, put my hair in a tight bun, went to Bible study. It looks nice and I feel better.

Monday, November 29, 2004

Got the Pantene shakes

I've been off the Pantene hair condish for seven days. Write it down. It equals one week. As I get my shampoo and creme rinse, ACV, Cetaphil, pumice stone, razor, all lined up ready to use in the shower my hand kind shakes as I pass over the Pantene. I'm doin' good though. Real good.

Sunday, November 28, 2004


Our seven year old son made a joyful noise in church tonight. He is on stage at church playing Away in a Manger and Hark, The Herald Angels Sing from memory. No sheet music. There were about 60 people in the audience, mostly kids from age pre-k to fourth grade and their teachers. He said for the rest of the night everyone was coming up to him telling him how good he was. It was a wonderful confidence builder for him and I'm glad for that.

In my research for homeschooling, I learnt of the classic approach to talent education founded by Shinichi Suzuki. Our son has been taking lessons since he was four. Suzuki teaches that all children have musical ability, it only needs to be nurtured and developed. This goes against traditional beliefs that only some people have musical talent and that very young children have no ability. Two of his books that I have are Nurtured by Love and Abilty Development From Age Zero. These are wonderful books which I highly recommend.

Relocating stuff

Moved all my husband's stuff out of the cupboard next to the shower so I can put my stuff in there. He just has junk like bathroom cleaners, sponges, Listerine, Dep, Nivea whereas I have important stuff. I have a lot of accouterments necessary for the maintenance and upkeep of this hair and body. If I forget something then I have step out of the the shower and walk all the way across the bathroom to the cupboard on the far, far side to fetch what I've forgotten. It's cold and I get the carpet wet. That's no good. So I moved all his stuff.

Saturday, November 27, 2004

A mother's (persistent) prayer answered

I wondered if it was futile. For years I've been praying for my eldest son to attend college. Connected only by telephone, I would slip in a word to him now and then when I could about the importance of education and how necessary it is to widen his horizons and increase his options. I spoke gently and persistently even when I felt like yelling. Give me five stars for staying upbeat and not yelling.

Every year he visits for Thanksgiving. This year he brought a girlfriend. He looked so good. Happy. At ease with himself. Delicious to my eyes. Sometimes I still can't get over how this offspring from my womb is now a 6'1" full grown man.

In September, on a whim he attended a local cattle call hoping for an acting part. They told him acting was a business and he had no business acting. Brutal, eh! But they told him he did have a look they might be looking for and they gave him instructions to get some new duds, shave off the goatee, and come back in three days for runway model tryouts. He returned and out of hundreds, he was selected to go to Los Angeles. He attended some classes, stayed at some fancy schmancy hotel in L.A. and called me four weeks later saying, "Hey Ma, you're talking to the third best looking guy in the United States and South Africa." He cracks me up. He got a trophy and a kiss from Miss U.S.A.

Anyway, he's quiet. He never mentioned a peep about going to college. Suddenly he tells me he's earned enough college credits to graduate, maybe next summer, with an A.A. degree. My child? The one who refused to enter a library in high school?

I'm certain this is in answer to my prayers, even though I admit I was afraid I was praying wrong or maybe for a wrong thing because I was praying on it for so long.

God has his own timing. Mothers must be persistent. You can't just pray for food, lie in bed, open your mouth and the food falls in. But you can never know when your prayer is the one that makes the difference. So pray for your children every day! If you don't, who will?

Blessed be the Name of the Lord.

Friday, November 26, 2004

Made a sparkling gif

I made an animated gif with a sparkling border. It's not great but I think it has potential.

Five days off of the Pantene wagon

This is my fifth day without Pantene silicone hair conditioner. I'm using strictly oils (jojoba, sweet almond, coconut) for conditioning for no reason other than it's my personal challenge. The hair is doing pretty good. I like the coconut oil very much. I can tell a difference when I deep condition using the almond rather than coconut oil. You might think oil is oil, but I'm noticing the oils are different. Of course, no matter what I use to deep condition I apply lots so that the hair looks very stringy, but after using the almond oil overnight, my hair is softer. In the morning after using coconut oil it's more rigid, like a broom. Still stringy but there's a definite contrast in the way the hair hangs and feels. Weird huh.

For Thanksgiving I wore my hair in a braided bun with my lavender bauble (as shown below). The bauble was great, my hair was so-so. I wore my black high neck sweater and blue jeans. I wasn't having a great hair day. At least now my tummy aches and headaches are gone. Everything went well for dinner until someone asked for the gravy. I forgot to make the gravy.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Ordered a Madora comb

Wait, wait. Let me catch my breath. I just placed an order for a Swiss made, smooth as butter, Madora comb.

Monday, November 22, 2004

A most unusual snow

Dallas Raines and his silly Live Doppler 7000+ missed this. We woke up to this view this morning. Here where we live it's mighty unusual weather.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

It was a beautiful French twist day

Before I went to bed last night I slathered my hair with coconut oil to see how well it works as a conditioner. In the morning after the big wash I dried my hair till barely damp and it looked so nice that I applied absolutely nothing to it. I put my head upside down and coiled it softly to form a french twist, secured it with four large bobby pins, checked the mirror; front, side, back. Ooh, it was luscious if I do say so myself. So that's how I wore it tonight. I was so pleased with the smoothness because I've tried the French twist over and over but never wore them out because of those wiry hairs at the bottom in the back. I thought they contrasted too much with the very smooth rest of my hair. Well today I had only a few wiries at the nape of my neck. Definitively less than usual. Could it be the coconut oil? I don't know. Read on.

So as I said, I slathered on a ton of coconut oil last night and slept on it - hair in two braids. I could credit the smoothness of my underneath hair to the coconut oil, but alas, in the shower this morning I used the Pave conditioner and, and, and...I added four drops, only four drops of PANTENE.


I don't know why I did it. Do I hate myself? No I don't hate myself. I just couldn't stop myself. Now the only way I will know for sure whether the smoothness is attributable to the coconut oil is if I wash, clarify, and do it all over again.

So tomorrow - full wash, clarify, another coconut oil night and NO PANTENE. I've just got to quit shooting myself in the foot!

An Advent story for youngsters

A couple weeks ago I ordered a book called Jotham's Journey. It's historical fiction. I've read the first chapter to make sure we'll like it and I know our son will thoroughly enjoy the story. I can't wait for Advent to begin.

P.S. - We finished the book for family read aloud and we all give it five out of five stars. Good story!

Saturday, November 20, 2004

The lavender bauble

'Twas a good hair day today. All because a couple days ago I purchased a cheapie-deep ponytail holder from Walgreen's (when I purchased the Paves). It has lavender plastic baubles stitched all around the edge. At first I wore it with my hair down but partially pulled back with a pony in the ponytail holder but later in the day I found I could bun all my hair and pop the holder around the bun and it was pretty that way too. It is so nice when you buy something that works.

The grapefruit essential oil is nice. I used such a wee bit as I didn't want to overdo it, so I need to conduct second test drive another day. This morning I used the coconut oil in my hair. The brand is Spectrum Naturals Coconut Oil for use on Hair and Skin. It was the specific brand I was shopping for. I won't know for a few days what I really think of it but it seemed to go on nicely. I mixed a bit in my hand, rubbed hands together to warm and liquify, added a drop of honeysuckle perfume oil and applied it to my hair. I defintely like the fragrance of honeysuckle perfume oil (on body or hair) but I already knew that. I used the coconut oil on my body last night as well. It's supposed to be excellent for very dry skin which I do get in the winter. We shall see.

Today I happened upon a goldmine of links in Fia's journal. I can't wait until I have time to sit down and peruse them. These are all links that she was saving for quick reference.

Natasha from NY I received your email and I will surely email you the instructions for the barefoot sandals tomorrow (Saturday). I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by the simplicity of the pattern. The most critical step is your knotting technique.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Pavés shampoo and creme rinse

I like it. I give four out of five stars to Pavés Flawless No Sulfates Allowed Repairing Shine Shampoo and the creme rinse too. By comparison, Gee Your Hair Smells Terrific would earn five stars so four is pretty good. The fragrance is amenable, even nice I think. I'm not into cosmetics and beauty buys but it smells different from anything I've ever used. I plan to use the shampoo long term to see if the lack of sulfates will have any effect on the amount of hair I lose each day. I'm shedding squirrels. It would be nice if I could shed a leetle less. I'm having to clean the bottom of my vacuum cleaner way too often.

Disappointment. No one woke me for Bible study and I'm supposed to be there at 9:30am. Consequently I didn't get to do a vinegar rinse before I used my new Pavé creme rinse, and then I had to go with my hair down and WET. Ruined my record for hair upness to Wednesday morning Bible study (Book of Matthew). I wanted to ACV rinse between shampoo and final rinse to see if the rinse disguised the vinegar smell. Last time the vinegar smell lingered. I'll do it tomorrow unless my hair looks nice which I don't think it will. Air dry is good for the hair but I don't earn any beauty points for it.

I telephoned the health food store this afternoon and they actually have grapefruit essential oil. Am going to check it out firsthand mañana. I forgot to ask if they have coconut oil. Heidi says coconut oil is good to add EOs to and that the coconut oil she recommends is scentless. That was news to me. I want to try essential oils and herbs and that sort of thing rather than bottles of shampoos and creme rinses.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Lil's hair care routine

Updated April 24, 2008

  • Increased washing to twice a week.
  • I always put oil on my hair before I wash it. Lately I put lots of avocado or monoi on the last six to ten inches then wear it up. I leave the oil in for up to three days. As I see it, since it's in an updo it doesn't matter that the ends are oily and stringy. No one sees 'em anyways since the ends are hidden.
  • Giovanni Organic shampoo, the 50:50, is my favorite shampoo and creme rinse.
  • I dilute each product (you don't need as much as you think you need) and pour it over my hair. It's more efficient than applying globs on my head.
  • I quit white vinegar rinses. Haven't used vinegar for like a year.
  • To apply the creme rinse I divide my hair into two sections and bring it over my shoulder, mix a generous dollop of creme rinse with about 1/3 cup water, then dip each section as high up as possible several times and pour the remainder over my hair - which isn't much because my hair soaks up most of it. I only apply it from the ears down because the top of my punkin' head doesn't need creme rinse.
  • Pin hair up with Ficcare and finish showering. This is about, hmmm, 20 minutes I guess.
  • Take hair down last and rinse thoroughly and do final rinse with cool or cold water to close the cuticle and increase shine. If ever I learn that cool rinse has no true effect, heads are gonna roll. I almost always do a cool or cold rinse even when I don't want to. One time I did a cold rinse then forgot about it and flipped my hair back behind me. HOOoooo Weeeee! Think that'll get your attention? Long, cold, hair all the way down your back on a winter day? Eeeek. Nearly took my breath away! Don't worry overly about this happening though because the up side'll only happen once.
  • Never wring. I stand in the shower and let the water trickle off my hair till it starts to drip, then I squeeze it from the top down and put it in a towel. While it's in a towel I can oil my bod up without getting it on the wet hair. I will lightly oil the hair, but not yet.
  • Always air dry. I avoid using a blow dryer except for my bangs which I wash and blow dry almost every day. I'll only blow dry under unusual circumstances, and then not for more than ten minutes to get rid of a chill or maybe get ridges out for some occasion.
  • The newest change in my vita-veeta-vega regiment (I inserted an "I Love Lucy" joke) is that I stopped combing my hair in the shower while the conditioner is in it. I now rinse the creme rinse out in a normal fashion like the rest of the world does, but! I don't comb through it at all until it's completely and thoroughly dry. Okay, I have to lightly comb the top of my head right away or my bangs will be wacky. It's working well! It leaves just the tiniest bit of wave or body in my hair this way. I have smooth, sleek hair, sometimes too much so, and I like the effect my new regiment has on my length.
  • I eat a balanced diet. I dance for exercise. I take no supplements for hair, mind or body except a calcium pill my husband makes me take. Well, except for Excedrin or Ibuprofen or Tylenol sometimes. Good food and exercise are key to growing healthy long hair. There are no substitutes for proper eating habits and regular exercise. Did anyone notice I had Ibuprofen spelled wrong on this page from August 2007 until now? Heavens to Mergatroid.
  • After completely dry and as soon as possible before it's bone dry (do you know what I mean?), I apply a wonderful leave-in that my friend, Kara, makes. It smooths the wiry hairs at my neck like nothing else and makes my hair shine and keeps it from drying out too much.
  • Wear my hair up 95% of the time. I wear it down more often now. Still, it's not super often but when we go someplace I will wear it down sometimes. A girl named Karen Marie did an accidental big chop (hers was still pretty even at the shorter length) and said one thing it caused her to see in a new light was that she wore it up way too much. Pretty much always, as did I. Sounded good to me, so I applied her idea to my life. It's working well. I like it. I wear it up at home mostly though because the other day I walked by the hall and my hair caught on the door jamb sticking out on an open door (we have a bunji cord on it because it bangs around too much when we drive ) and it about gave me whiplash it yanked me back so hard. The hair didn't glide apart, it chose to knot up at the end and that's why it stopped me cold in my tracks. You'd think I'd stepped on a banana peel. I was lucky it didn't pull a bunch of hair out. It could have been a Cal/Osha recordable, as my husband says. That's a form you have to fill out when there's been an on-the-job workplace accident.

The end!

Liliana's Growth Record by the inch

I lopped off three or four inches of damaged ends before I found The Loom in March of 2004. It gave me a fresh start to begin a quest for long, healthy hair.

March 2004 - 24" U-shaped hemline.
October 2004 - 27"
November 1, 2004 - 28"
December 1, 2004 - 28.5"
December 19, 2004 - 29"

January 1, 2005 - 29.5" A self trim (Feye method) went badly. I will never do it again.
April 1, 2005 - 30.5
July 1, 2005 - 31.5"
August 1, 2005 - 32"
September 1, 2005 - 33" Ratty, uneven, dry ends.
September 2, 2005 - 30" Got a trim and went from soft 'U' to straight hemline.
October 1, 2005 - 30.5"
November 1, 2005 - 31"
December 1, 2005 - 31.5

January 1, 2006 - 32"
February 1, 2006 - 32.5" Steady as she goes. Microtrim.
May 1, 2006 - 34" Steady 1/2" growth per month since last trim September 2, 2005.
June 1, 2006 - 34 and 1/4"
August 1, 2006 - 35.5"
September 2, 2006 - 35.5" Total growth 5.5" since Septemer 2005
October 1, 2006 - 36" Woohoo! I'm thrilled. I'm content. I'm happy.
November 1, 2006 - 36.5" Desiring a trim. Unhappy with ends.
December 1, 2006 - 36.5" Because I trimmed my pointed end off.
December 7, 2006 - 35" Ivan trimmed my ends for free! Better blunt hemline. Nice!

January 1, 2007 - 35" Still? Yup.
February 1, 2007 - 35.5"
March 1, 2007 - 36"
April 1, 2007 - 36.5"
May 1, 2007 - 37" I am so content with this length. I like how it swishes when it's down although I almost always wear it up. I yearn for a freshly cut hemline though. I can feel when it's not perfectly even. I will have Ivan trim it again for me in December. I'm looking forward to hitting 40" - hopefully in November?
June 1, 2007 - 37.5 I remember wishing my hair was this long. Now it is and it doesn't seem very long.
July 1, 2007 - 38" Woohoo!
August 1, 2007 - Thought I wasn't gonna make it but I'm 38.5. Feel like I'm glissading down a mountainside! And thatsalottafun.
September 1, 2007 - Again, thought I wasn't gonna make it but I'm 39". Man, I feel great about this 39!
October 1, 2007 - 39 and 3/8"
November 1, 2007 - 39 and 7/8" Such pain! A mere eighth of an inch from 40. Next month I hit the big 4-0 for sure!
December 1, 2007 - 40.5" I feel pretty.

January 1, 2008 - 40.75 Some hair is at 41", but not all. Wanting a trim.
NEWSFLASH: Goal attained. Classic length. I didn't realize it till I took a photo on January 5th! I'm...breathless.
February 1, 2008 - 41.5"

February 27, 2008 - 41 7/8" in the morning and 40" in the afternoon. Saw Ivan and got a trim. I like it.
March 1, 2008 - 40 1/8" A wee bit above classic. Better ends now.
April - didn't record measurement due to lack of interest.
May 6, 2008 - 41.5"
June 1, 2008 - 42"
July 1, 2008 - 42.5"
August 3, 2008 - 43" I have to say it looks exactly the same to me as it did when it was 41".
September 1, 2008 - 43 1/8" So this is what I get for saying it looks the same? This month, 1/8" growth.
October 1, 2008 - Strange month. Measured 43 1/8" on the first. Twice. I didn't believe it but accepted it. Then I remembered that we did a mid-month measure and it was almost 43.5" then. Perplexed, I asked son to measure over again on October 4th and, voila, it shows 43 6/8th. I'm rounding to a joyful 43.5". We don't know why we kept getting a no growth measurement on the 1st.
November 1, 2008 - 43.5" Self trim to take off longest ends.
December 1, 2008 - 43.75" I got 1/8th inch growth. Growth has slowed.

January 1, 2009 - 44 1/8" My knees are 51" and that's my new dream length.
February 1, 2009 - 45" I didn't notice till now that this means over 1/2" growth. I hope it was an accurate measure.
March 11, 2009 - Ivan trimmed. Now 41.5". I expected only two inches off but it looks great with this new, improved hemline. (3.5" trimmed off)
April 1, 2009 - No measure. Got a bladder infection and then sick almost all month.
May 13, 2009 - 42.5"
June 1, 2009 - 42.6"
July 1, 2009 - 43"
August 1, 2009 - 43.5"
September 1, 2009 - 44"
October 1, 2009 - 44.5"
November 1, 2009 - 45"
December 1, 2009 - 45.5"

January 1, 2010 - 45.5"
February 1, 2010 - 46"
March 1, 2010 - 46.5" (Need a trim, but haven't done it yet.)
April 1, 2010 - 47"
May 1, 2010 - Self trimmed a wee bit. 47"
June 1, 2010 - 47.5"
July 1, 2010 - 47.5" No growth this month! so I figured I'd do a self trim again to 47.2" Ends got caught in the fan in the hallway twice. That can't be good. I'm surprised how a tiny trim of such a few hair can make the length look better. I'm a full year away from knee length. Realistically, more like a year and a half or two years at the rate of my growth. An added note: I just realized it's more accurately called dusting rather than a trim. I do it like JJJ.
September 1, 2010 - No growth at all.
October 1, 2010 - 48 and 1/4th. Finally hit 48!
November 6, 2010 - 48.5"
November 6, 2010 - 47. 75" Trimmed 3/4 inch. Ends needed it and it looks much better.
March 1, 2011 - 49 7/8" What happened to December through February? Did I forget to write?
June 1, 2011 - 46.5" Forgot to mention trim in April.  It was very satisfying.  The ends are still much better.
July 24, 2011 - Where did July 1-23 go? 47 1/4"
August 24, 2011 - 48" Yay!
October 12, 2011 - Full moon. Mayela trimmed my hair a little bit. 47" Looks better, feels great.
November 4, 2011 - 47 3/8"  He says the hemline is crooked.
December 19, 2011 - 48"  So it's growing!  Woohoo.

March 17, 2012 - 49"
April 8, 2012 - 49 2/8" and I trimmed 2/8".  Just a few scraggly hairs.
May 3, 2012 - 49.5" Yay!  So close to 50" though the very ends look worn out.
May 5, 2012 - Son trimmed for me.  More of a cut really.  I said take off as much as you think to make the hemline look nice.  He took of 7.5".  I was happy at the time but now (two days later) am a little weepy.

Monday, November 15, 2004

2nd grade sausage curls

My mom had to work really hard to get my hair to hold any curl when I was little. I don't remember my mom fixing my hair on this particular picture day, but I do remember her putting pin curls in my hair for special occasions. I hated them. It took my thick hair so long to dry that she'd try to get me to sleep in them. I'd have bobby pins pokin' my head all night long. I remember playing Barbie dolls (technically I owned a Francie doll and seriously coveted a genuine Barbie) with our neighbor on the porch while waiting for my horrid pin curls to dry.

In fourth grade my mom got us pixie cuts in Tijuana, then I was one ugly little girl. I'll have to dig up that one next. The word was I had a badly shaped head whereas my little sister had a natural duck tail. Oh well.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

A French twist

Sometimes I wake in the morning to the sound of '70s tunes blaring in my head. It's always a good song. I'm talkin' tunes I haven't thought of for years and years. Decades even. I can't explain how they pop into my consciousness with such crystal clarity. It's like I have my own cerebral surround sound. It happened again this morning.

Since I didn't have to be at fellowship till 6:00pm I waited till 5:00pm to wash my hair and clean up. That means I was ratty all day. I visited family in San Diego Saturday so I felt ratty on the inside too. It always takes me several days to recover from a family visit. It's like the very environment sucks out all my electrolytes. I'm a fish flapping around on dry sand until I can reach my pond again.

After much deliberation, I decided to wear my hair in a French twist. I did a scalp wash only, then a fast bath, and amazingly I didn't get my length wet at all. That's four stars please. I put a drop of jojoba on the ends and twisted it up. I added another drop and a half (yes I can pour a half drop out of my bottle!) to smooth the crazy hairs and shine the top and sides. I rushed, so after three tries one side was perfection and the other side, the side that twists under, was a rough but it had to do. I braided it yesterday so it had nice waves today and when I do a scalp wash then the top is fluffy and clean and it looks pretty good. It did tonight anyway.

I may have turned my sister into a long hair devotee. Back in the day, she always had hair a little longer than I. She has lovely thick, auburn tresses while I inherited genes for plain brown hair and the early grey. She's 41 and has had a grand total of, hmmm, six grey hairs. Last time we talked she was adamant that she'd just keep it shoulder length as she got older. "Pffft!" I said. Let it grow out. Older women can have long hair and be pretty; look at me. Be like me! (Is my modesty showing?) She replied, as if I were from another planet, "Older? I'm not getting older." I said, "Pffft!" again, but this time silently.

Friday, November 12, 2004

Barefoot sandals

I made a pair of barefoot sandals for my Dad's wife for her birthday. They're sparkly and pretty. I used Swarovski crystals on this set so it's the nicest pair I've made to date. I made a cute holder out of cardstock and I put them in a darling little gold colored organza bag with yellow tassels that came with an order that I placed at an online beauty store. I hope she likes them.

Belly dance and hair

Man, I feel great when I do a scalp wash. I feel like I'm being so good to my hair. Tonight was belly dance class and it's the one time of week that I get all fixed up to go out. I got two new tops at the mall today - two for $20.00. Such a deal! There were lots of sales due to Veteran's Day holiday, plus the youngsters got the day off so the mall was crowded.

Anyway, back on topic. For belly dance I always, but always, wear my hair up. I have a perfect record for wearing my hair up to this class, and that's since August. Tonight I jumped in the shower at 6:00 pm after our delicious pizza dinner, and put my hair in a bun with a ziploc baggie over it to keep it dry. Classy, I know. I didn't dilute my shampoo though because, well I don't know why, I just didn't.

I dried my hair and it looked really good for some reason. Some water did get to the ends. I don't know how that happens but maybe it's due to my hair being basically straight and slick. Perhaps more experience will improve my method. I pulled it back into a pony, braided, and made a bun. It turned out real pretty.

By then it was 7:00pm and that gave me 10 minutes to finish up. I put a drop of jojoba oil on the top and sides to smooth the hairs and shine them up and hair sprayed my bangs. I know hair spray in not kind on hair, but once a week I do it anyway.

I got to use my new zills for the first time. I was totally uncoordinated. Plus I got up in front of the class (without the zills) and danced for the first time. I was nervous and tight. I could not move my feet! That means I danced in one exact spot the whole time. Well the girly girls in class were sweet as could be, especially since I'm new, and everyone applauded when I finished. One girl, she's a psych major with beautiful, straight, honey blond hair, bsl, said I have really good hips. I do have good hips. Now if only I can move the hips, the feet, and maybe some arms at the same time. That would be helpful.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

I have really stinky hair

And I mean that literally. I received my new amla and jasmine oils yesterday. They were $6.50 each plus s&h and were a total bust. I used the jasmine oil last night and my husband had a big fit over the smell. You'd think he was in second grade or something. ...Only, his description of the fragrance I cannot type here KWIM. Big disappointment. I threw them out because if he ever smells them again he won't come near me. I'm not buying anything ever again that I can't smell with my own nose first.

The amla was thick smelling, overpowering. Maybe smelled like a '70s head shop or a new age store. The jasmine my husband said smelled like stinky feet or something worse, then he continued to enumerate all the stinky things he could think of, getting more creative as he went along and told me (with his arms flailing about and his great, big voice) to never again have him smell something like that. Very amusing, not. Sometimes men are just big boys. Never fear. I will not be this easily discouraged and luckily, I have my long hair care support board. Next time: real essential oils.