Reader of the Month: “Being Small”

     Oh, my favorite Petite Pineapple. Where to begin? I don’t think it merely comprehendable how long exactly I’ve been waiting to press that little blue ‘Publish’ button on the upper-right-hand-corner of my screen. The Petite Pineapple and I have been best-friends since the summer before kindergarten. I know I’ve told this story before, but it couldn’t be more true to the people we still are today. Basically, we were at a before kindergarten meet-and-greet, and we discovered that we were both wearing the same headband. It was chocolaty brown, embellished with pink and white daisies- a real hit for Target’s 2008 devoted flock of incoming kindergarten girls. After that, we were inseparable. At the end of our first play date, post Barbie playing, High School Musical binging and Goldfish devouring, I promptly ran up to our moms and declared that we were best friends. And, the rest is history. Many things amaze about The Petite Pineapple, but her natural confidence is hands down what inspires most. I invite you to read the article she has written for April’s Reader of the Month, and I can guarantee that you will finish feeling just as empowered as well as impressed at her determination, excellent writing ability, and perseverance, as I was. Petite Pineapple, I could not be more proud to call you my best friend!

XOXO,

The Legally Brunette Continue reading

Happy (belated) Birthday, Legally Brunette Blog!

My dearest Legally Brunette Blog,

Happy birthday. Or, should I say, happy belated birthday. You know I’m not great with that stuff. It’s been a little over a year now to the day that I worked up the nerve to meet you. You big beautiful ray that clobbered every thought standing in your way until I met you.

In this past year, you have gained 25 followers! Kudos. You have received over 1,000 views, and have published 34 blog posts (35 counting this one). But easily measurable and far from sky-rocketing stats aside, you have given much more than you have gained, and for that, I wanted to thank you. For giving me strong, supportive, and witty friendships I couldn’t have ever dreamed of (Shout out to Sunshine and Shortbread– one of the best writers and most appreciative friends of the wonders of an artsy picture I know!)

Thank you for allotting me perspective- that intelligence takes many forms, and that everyone falls victim to puppy-love every once in a while.

Thank you for allowing me to present a facade of being calm, cool, and collected, when in real life we all know that I get just as paranoid about poor grades as every other student, and that as much as I try, I will be never able to accomplish the hair tutorial blog posts I publish on myself in real life. Continue reading

Hairstyle No. 4: “Flower Power”

Hello everyone,

It’s spring. Yeah, I know it’s not technically spring, but trust me, it’s spring. I trudged to school the other morning in a fluffy winter jacket expecting nothing less nor nothing more than wonted March 1st weather, yet when do my pleas to Mother Nature ever get answered? Ha ha, never. When I actually feel like going to Michael’s and finding snowstorm-puzzles or cute stencils to decorate my hot-cocoa mugs with, I am shunned!  Well, c’est la vie. But do not fret, for I have a springtime hairstyle up my sleeve!

Actually, I took this photo shoot a while ago, way back in October, I think. Ha! October. Just think back to October when the biggest worry on your mind was whether you could still pass for a trick-or-treater? Well this whole, er, “extravaganza” you could call it resulted in this photo shoots without failing to throw in a few curve balls along the way. You’d the backstory would go something along the lines of a peaceful picnic in the yard, mesmerized by the soft streaks of color traipsing across the skyline, all while being serenaded by the sweet coo of bird and jittery hiss of grasshopper. Well, quite the contrary! The wonderful model who is presenting the finale piece in the blog’s hairstyle program through pixelated rectangles, better known as the Petite Pineapple, has been one of my very closest friends for years. (We bonded over our shared pastime of munching on Goldfish and playing with Barbies in kindergarten, naturally.)

Since the dawn of time, (more like the beginning of 4th grade when we went through our inevitable Food Network phase) we have hosted our families for an annual dinner that we prepare. I have no shame in stating the fact that she is certainly the more adventurous one when creating, and more often than not, commenting on various dishes. Heck, she even contacted the lead chef from the cookbook she used when her eclairs didn’t work out to find out how to fix them! Yeah, I’m definitely more of a Betty Crocker kind of gal when it comes to baking, but  don’t get me wrong! Duncan Hines never falls short on my list either.

Well, the night of the photoshoot happened to also be the night of our dinner. I had had this hairstyle idea floating around my old can of thoughts for months, and thought the time perfect to settle in for a relaxing hair make-over after a long day of baking. I also won’t deny the fact of my natural control-freakishness when it comes to endeavors like these, especially when something was on my to-do list. What can I say? I have a blog to run and places to be! With much reluctance, and a bitter twinge in the air, most likely caused by a recent outburst of maniacal yelling, cheek-flushing, hair-pulling and head-banging, I cleared every last square-inch of hair tools I could find in order to get into my groove. My (most likely now) arthritic hands twisted every last knot, tightened every last braid, and stuffed every last floret until so many “Ow!”‘s and “Sorry!”‘a were exchanged, God received an overload of prayers regarding that this hairstyle be over with at some point. 

Once the look passed the multiple strenuous test of “photo shoot readiness” and received it’s well-deserved seal of approval, we encountered yet another battle. This time, it was with none other than a rabid skunk. 

That’s right! A rabid skunk. Just casually meandering though the street in broad daylight, without a care in the world. I tried to ignore it, as it seemed to prefer territory on the other side of the street. The Petite Pineapple on the other hand was much more concerned. Just to give you some perspective, in between all of these shots, we were turning our heads every five seconds to see if the skunk had drawn any closer to our sacred territory of Girl World! Fortunately, the skunk stayed on its side of the street for the time being, until my mom and I woke up to a sweet little surprise sprawled among the dead vines and seedlings of our backyard gardens: the skunk. The completely rabid and now completely dead skunk. 

Other than the lingering odor it emitted and dusted throughout our neighborhood, I didn’t have anything directly against the poor little skunk. All I have to say is, thank goodness for animal control! Godspeed! Well, I mean, I guess I’ll give a little tutorial on this, if I have to. It’s only the final one, right? All right, all right, we shall officially commence the instruction of the tutorial! Continue reading

Brunette’s Book Club: The Memory of Things (Not Exclusive To Brunettes!)

 Can you believe it? After nearly 5 long, glorious months, the Brunette has returned with her Book Club. That is right, I have spent hours scrutinizing every inch of the  Barnes & Noble book racks in search of a book that combines a little bit of cliche romance, and a message you carry with you well after you have read the last page. And, I think I’ve found the perfect one. I don’t know about you, but I feel like authors have recently been shifting their romantic appeal towards real love stories. Love stories that don’t look like they’ve been ripped from the hands of Hollywood and slapped onto a few pages. I like a good love story with meaning, and depth. Also, one that simply isn’t perfect. One where both characters grow as a result of bettering each other. It’s a tall order, believe me. But the idea of ‘unconditional love’ is different among everyone. Love is no longer portrayed as a one-size-fits-all standard, and to me, The Memory Of Things perfectly encapsulates the idea of discovering imperfection and beauty in times of crisis and healing. 


img_0074 Continue reading

The POWER of Quiet

Hey everyone,

This week I want to talk about something that that has dragged its feet behind me ever since I could talk. It was something that, at the time, I didn’t realize was so powerful. The comment that summarized my report cards, what scared me away from talking, negotiating, screaming until the hurt couldn’t possibly hurt anymore. It was what kept me from own life. That is, until I found it. It was my voice.


“Speak up!”

“I’m sorry, what was that?”

“Huh?”

“If only you weren’t so shy…”

“Sorry honey, my hearing at this age ain’t too sharp.”

“Say that again.”

“You’re a bright girl, but…”

“Wait, what?!”

“If only you were more like her.”

“You’re not loud enough.”


Continue reading

Costume Collection: Rosie The Riveter

Hey everyone,

With Halloween in our midst, I thought it would be a perfect time to start a new series here on the Legally Brunette Blog: Costume Collection. Whaddya think? I have always struggled to come up with the perfect costume, mind you, in time for Halloween, that I’d just give up, blow through my babysitting money on a mask (from none other than the Tar-jay) with a scent of fresh, manufactured plastic that if anything screams, “Halloween!”. Aaaand about 50 other “necessities” from the $1 and $3 section. Man, do they know how to get money out of your pocket or what?! Well, I thought I’d help out in that department. But first off: confession time. Halloween has never been my favorite holiday. I know, I know! It’s sad but true. I guess the countless number of times when I had to choose between Reese’s and Snickers, knowing full well I’d just have to throw them out when I got home kind of turned me away from Halloween. Now most of you reading (if any!) probably don’t have a severe peanut allergy. There is still an off-chance some of you might, but it’s not that common. To give you some perspective, Halloween for kids with allergies is like having someone knock at your door when you’ve just had a terrible day, and in their hands is a ginormous Edible-Arrangement made entirely of your favorite candy. You can have this edible arrangement, but you can’t eat it. Only your very best friends can, and when someone offers you a piece of your favorite candy that they get to eat all by themselves, you have to politely decline, and watch. Okay… that might have been a little melodramatic, just a tad, but I think you’ve got the idea. But where we can really shine on Halloween is through our costumes! Now, there definitely are going to be a couple thousand Harley Quinn’s out there, so I’ve heard. (Second confession: I haven’t seen Suicide Squad! Should I?) And probably a few million Elsa’s. But with Hillary Clinton’s campaign skyrocketing, and women that much closer to gaining equal pay for equal work, I thought, why not continue the girl-power party? So, as stated in the title, I have put together a costume of…. (drum roll, please!) Rosie The Riveter! I hope you enjoy this costume, so, let’s get started


Continue reading

Hairstyle No. 3: “Fit For A King”

Hey everyone, 

This week, I’m going back to the basics. When I first started this blog, I’m not sure if you remember, but I started a series of hair tutorials. Well, you guessed it, judging by the title of this post, I’m doing yet another hairstyle. This years fall fashion seems to be edging toward the simplicity and natural elegance this frothy time of year brings, and I think this hairstyle delivers just that. I hope you enjoy this hairstyle, and kickoff to a blog-post-filled-fall here at The Legally Brunette Blog!


013dd31e8c96f531e8a1243b24f174cb6c3ccdd482 To start off this hairstyle, you will need to make sure you have the following tools:

  • 8-10 Bobby Pins
  • Regular Hairbrush
  • Smoothing Brush
  • Hairspray
  • Patience 

Approximate Time: 10-15 minutes

TIP: DO NOT USE PRODUCT WHEN SMOOTHING/BRUSHING HAIR, THIS LOOK SHOULD BE AS NATURAL AS POSSIBLE!!


Continue reading

My Chanel Collection

Hey everyone!

Now, you may have seen the collection sprinkled through a few of my previous blog post pictures, solemnly sitting on the sidelines, watching hours and hours of photo shoots take place for all of my other posts, but now it’s their turn.

My Chanel Collection is one my most prized possessions, not because of the brand name, or their signature posh scent. They are for my grandmother. My grandmother, Judith. She raised six children, the first five, born in five years, (Yep. You did the math right. No, none of them were twins.) while actively campaigning for local Democratic candidates, enforcing Title IX, telling off coaches who said her daughters couldn’t play on the baseball team, and strutting down Newbury Street, leaving a thickly scented trail of Chanel No. 5 wherever she went. She was fierce. And sassy. And smart, and witty, and caring, and tough, and- the list goes on. But my  grandmother. The one I idolize. The one in whose memory I keep a shrine of her scent to preserve her memory, is the same grandmother I never got to meet. She died just seven months before I was born, but she knew I was coming. Do you know that question people ask as an icebreaker, when there is a lull in conversation on a first date, or an awkward silence after you realize you’re talking to the completely wrong person? The question that goes something like: If you were to have lunch with someone, dead or alive, who would it be? People usually say famous people, like Eleanor Roosevelt, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein or Kim Kardashian, even. Without a doubt, I’d say my grandmother. 

My mom told me recently, that when someone dies, as long as you keep their memory alive, they’re never really gone. It seems to me, many people have the concept of death entirely figured out. But, to be honest, I really have no idea how I feel or what I think about death. But I really don’t feel like the ones I have lost, have lost me. The scent of Chanel No. 5, some may say it just a perfume, decorating the trim pages of Vogue, but to me, it is what I have left to love, what I never got a chance to love. Do any of you have a keepsake to remember the loved ones you have lost in your life? If you don’t, I encourage you to find one! I have battled grief for my entire life, until I learned to make peace with it, once my enemy, and now my friend. I let the constant fear of being afraid, control my every word, action, and relationship. Something small to one can be another’s entire world. I took a few pictures of my collection, and hopefully, this may inspire some of you to create your own. Leave a comment below telling me if you have special memories or keepsakes of either the ones you’ve lost, or even the ones still living. Enjoy the rest of your week, and I will be posting very soon! XOXO! (or should I say, COCO!)

lauren-chanel-collection-and-tie-dye-025 Continue reading

Beauty Favorites: Summer 2016!

Hey everyone!

This week’s post is all about…get ready for it…I’m really not sure if you can handle it…oh well, here goes nothing…BEAUTY FAVORITES!!!! Yes you did hear me right, I am finally sharing my Beauty Favorites of the summer. It includes items from hair care products, to the best matte lipstick, to a highlighter that will show all the truly beautiful features of what makes you, you! This is not as much of a text-based post as it is photography based! I have shared a few pictures I’ve taken on my blog before, but I’ve never really showed my passion in full force! I hope you enjoy this quick, but hopefully helpful post that might just inspire some new additions to your good ole makeup collection!017a53dc19cb4d1ef26cddc6fb89d2bc81387e8976 Continue reading

Hairstyle No. 2: “An Abundance of Curls”

Hey everyone,

I have a brand new hairstyle for you this week, which I think looks absolutely STUNNING! Again for this hairstyle, my friend was the model. Make sure to check out her blog as well, and I will put a link to it below at the end of the post. This highlights beautiful spring curls, with a touch of sophistication, and brings out the natural colors and volume your hair has to offer! This hairstyle isn’t as simple as the previous hairstyle tutorial I showed, but it is really worth the effort when you see how gorgeous it turns out at the end! I am starting to run out of words… so let’s get started!


017d605ab8f1292e5a8006d19a7326b01d851a3ac0To start off this hairstyle, you will need to make sure you have the following tools:

  • Curling iron (I use the Hot Tools 1″ curling iron)
  • Smoothing brush
  • Regular hairbrush
  • 6-8 bobby-pins
  • One (1) elastic
  • Heat protectant spray
  • Hairspray

Approximate Time: 30-35 mins (depending on length of hair) 

TIP: PLUG IN YOUR CURLING IRON BEFORE YOU START THIS HAIRSTYLE! IT WILL SAVE SOOO MUCH TIME!!!


 

Steps To Achieve This Hairstyle:

  1. To start off this hairstyle, brush out your hair thoroughly with your regular hair brush, until all the knots and tangles are out of your hair. (You know you’re done brushing when you can run your finger through every part of your hair with little to no tangles)
  2. Next, section off a good chunk of hair on the crown of your head, and tie it or clip it back. This will be for the bun in the center of your head. 
  3. Brush through the rest of your hair, and spray it with your heat protectant spray.
  4. Curl your hair. Once finished curling, let cool for 5 minutes and then pull back into a loose ponytail at the base of your head. (I’d suggest that you spray your curled hair with hairspray before you put it into a loose ponytail to have your curls hold a little better.)
  5. Unclip the section of hair you tied up on the crown of your head in Step 2. Take a smaller section from that hair and tie it or clip it back on in your head (it should be large enough to create a bun.)
  6. Divide the small section of hair you don’t have tied back in four pieces on each side of your head. Braid those pieces into four small braids on each side of your head. Once finished braiding, tuck them in front of your ear or anywhere to temporarily keep them out of the way. 
  7. Take the remaining section of hair you have tied on the crown of your head and create a loose ballerina bun and secure with an elastic.
  8. Pin the braids around the bun, and any loose pieces. 
  9. Release the curled hair you have tied back. Spray hairspray throughout all of your hair to finish the look. 
  10. Voila! Enjoy your beautiful new hairstyle!

All right everyone, that concludes this week’s post, but I will certainly be blogging soon! I hope you enjoy this new hairstyle, and if you did, comment down below telling me what you thought of it! Also, if you have any requests for future hairstyle tutorials, that would be very helpful! Enjoy the last few weeks of spring and our journey into summer! See y’all real soon…

Remember, this is a community of friendship and trust. If you decide to be a part of this journey on The Legally Brunette Blog, you have to be willing to trust, listen, care, grow, and not be afraid to show your silly side!! 

Au Revoir!

-The Legally Brunette

Follow me on Pinterest: The Legally Brunette Blog (username: @TheLBblog) I pin A TON!!

Follow me on Polyvore: @thelegallybrunetteblog.

My friend’s blog: https://thepetitepineapple.wordpress.com/