A Family Portrait – Whatever Wednesdays. Random Jodie Moments

Family is what you gravitate towards. It’s the reason for staying and the impetus for doing. Family is the everything that matters at the close of each day.

Michele Crowe visited with us at home in Brooklyn and snapped us as we were that day…a bit of everything.


my everything

my everything

its chemical

it’s chemical


it’s unbreakable


it’s eyeopening


it’s catalystic


it’s permanent

family in

The Ghartey-Patterson-Becker Crew

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Lana Ogilvie: Celestial – What Is Beauty?


Creative Thinker

Creative Being (or perhaps celestial)

Lana Ogilvie


Occupation: Mom, model, jeweler, creative thinker


Passion: Music and art


Work philosophy: I enjoy going to work with people I truly like. I’ve never really played ‘the game’ in the fashion industry. I always hope people book me because they enjoy working with me and like me as a person. (Being able to sell the product helped too.) But I was never interested in paying the kind of ‘ego games’ that go on in most entertainment industries – models fall into that field. I’ve had great success, but could have probably been even more successful if I had subscribed to that philosophy.


Biggest mistake: Naïveté


A treasured success: My longevity and consistency as a working model. I’m still on a busy schedule after 25 years!


A credit to my success: I’m actually very funny and much wilder than I outwardly appear!


Daily beauty routine: I wash then  use an organic Marula anti-oxidant face serum, followed by an organic moisturizer with Damas rose and coconut, Tamanu, and vitamin E oils. Then, a heavier moisturizer with SPF 30. Plus an organic anti-inflammatory eye cream. I wear mascara everyday because I have such thin lashes.


Hair routine: I wish I had more time to spend on my hair. I brush with a Denman bristle brush. It’s made for extension so the bristles are are long and have more space between each bristle, plus the bristles are harder so it really goes through my hair. I use Olio Relax by Kerastase. Expensive but you don’t need much so it lasts forever.


What does beauty mean to you? Being secure in your own skin.


Beauty Mantra: Always wash your face at night, even if you don’t have on makeup.



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Be A Ninja – Whatever Wednesdays (Side Notes & Random Jodie Moments)

Be a Ninja with a Heart

Be a Ninja with a Heart

There’s nothing more moving than to clean up behind your kids (as we do every damn day) and stumble upon something (tucked deep under a pillow) that so genuinely reflects who they are at that singular moment in time. A gentle note of reminder to that lazy tooth fairy who somehow forgot to show up several nights in a row. A crayon drawing of all five siblings in size order – plus an unidentified sixth child grinning from ear to ear. A not-so-nice note about mommy being a Mean-y-Pants and Papa being a Stupid Grownup. A song, beautifully and slowly written by your son – about his grit and endless heart.

Ninga (Ninja)

I might be a ninga

But I got a hart

I be tough

But I got a hart

I’m like that

From the start

Oh oh oh oh oh oh

Oh oh oh oh oh oh

Babby eho Babby eho

My legs as hard as steel

I’m not despicable

Oh no Oh yes Oh no Oh yes

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Beauty to Match Your Mood – TransformationTuesdays

what bubbles up fro inside of you?

What is it that bubbles up from inside of you?

There was a time in my life when I was painfully uncomfortable with my looks. I felt small and awkward. Boyish and goofy. The polar opposite of pretty.  In fact, next to my graceful and womanly older sisters, I wanted so desperately to fade away. Most of the time I did just that, I shrank away from cameras and onlookers and sat close to mama. For many years, I was a voyer to everyone else’s fun at the party.


What I didn’t know at the time was, our beauty is not surface. It literally comes out of us. Joyous, or melloncolly, mysterious, or brazen, shy or roucus – our beauty is first an emotion. It wasn’t until my late 30’s I realized I could use my feelings (a ton of which I had) to ignite my beauty. There is nothing more gorgeous than a woman who highlights the very thing that bubbles up from inside of her. For me it’s enthusiasm – I can’t keep it at bay and thankfully it is the very thing that will keep me forever young and glowing.


Find your mood

When you feel a certain way, jot it down so you can remember it. Keep a journal of what’s going on in your head and heart. Add one more category of Notes in your phone and each time you feel something, type in exactly that feeling. I like to clip pictures of anything that catches my eye, and usually the things that do catch my eye are the very things that resemble my feelings.  By the end of each month, my black Moleskine is filled with quotes, photos, even color swatches – things that reflect who I am (or want to be).


Make up and product can be the perfect tool to express your inner feelings. Use them to amplify your emotions (aka, your inner beauty).  Take  your own ‘black book’ of mood memories, and study it. Once you’ve gotten to know yourself on that deeper level, choose make up, lotions and potions that reflect who you are. In the words of my dear friend, Bevy Smith, “Beauty is what bubbles and pops.”


Hop over to my other-other beauty site, Doobop, to grab some of my fave mood-products for November!


the tools




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TRANSparent: Creating A Beautiful Life for My Child (#MamaBearMondays)



Many people have asked me “Why put your business on the streets? Why point the spotlight  on such a personal conversation? Why expose yourself and your family to ridicule and danger?




Everything in me told me to share, educate and make a difference. Gender variance is a deep issue. Essentially it’s an American story. One that says: “Accept me for who I am. I am no less than or more than you.” Speaking outloud on raising a transgender child was difficult, but I’m focused on making sure my son has the beautiful life I have and better. I want him to move through life with freedom, confidence and love. The rest – the details of his life are up to him.

I told our TRANSfamily story in Essence Magazine’s November 2014 issue. And I told it with pride. Our family’s story is one of Love, Flexibility and Belief.  Bellow is the UNEDITED version of that piece.




I’m a mother of five amazing children each yielding a unique influence over the family and with a particular purpose in life. One came to us at nineteen through circumstances I didn’t control and subsequently, made us all believe in karma. Another is a gentle soul who keeps our collective heart soft. Yet another we call The President who reminds us that perfection is in each of us. The youngest is our rascal who pushes our understanding of patience further than we could have ever imagined. And then there’s my Rock Star, Penel, who opened my eyes to something so basic and fundamental, that he disrupted everything I knew to be true and gave me a better world to live in. Penel is our family’s link to unconditional love, and the center of our transfamily story.

Our fourth child was born Penelope Adjua Ghartey. Named after my mother-in-law and the Ghanaian day of the week on which I went into labor. Penelope was born anatomically a perfect girl and we were so proud to name our child after one of the matriarchs in our family.  We were all so happy to welcome a baby girl into our lives.  In my mind I was thinking, ‘Yay, another girl! Piece-of-cake. I know girls like the back of my hand.’ In actuality, I had no idea how complex our lives were about to become.

It's all LOVE


As Penelope grew over the years, a very unsettled child emerged. In every way possible, Penelope displayed signs of anger, anxiety, fear and disruption. It was as if Penelope were fighting a force so big that it was taking up every bit of energy.  Dressing became a fight between Penelope and anyone trying to move the process along.  By the age of two, Penelope was a chronic bed-wetter, nail biter and sufferer of reoccurring nightmares. And most noticeably, Penelope had quickly turned into a bully – pushing siblings and throwing toys at friends. Watching my child at odds with the world was heartbreaking. Ironically, bullies are often the ones who are hurting the most, inside.


In a quiet room alone one day, I asked Penelope, “What’s the matter love? Why are you so angry all the time?” Penelope responded with a flood of tears, “Because everyone thinks I’m a girl, and I’m not.” I knew at that moment it was important to say something that would convey my unconditional love and support. I remember saying: “Baby, you’re free to be whomever you feel. What’s inside is what counts”. Without a second delay, Penelope spoke up clearer than I’d ever heard before and looked directly into my eyes, “Mama, I don’t feel like a boy. I am a boy.”  Those simple words shook me to my core. What Penelope was talking about was deeper than what I knew. I was talking about self-expression. Penelope was conveying knowledge of self. This was about: Being vs Feeling.

Knowledge of Self


I listened carefully to Penelope tell me about how he hated his body and wanted a doctor to make him a ‘peanut’. How, his ‘tomorrow’ will be worse than his ‘today’ because “soon my body will look like yours, mama”. He spoke of how he didn’t want tomorrow to ever come. All the while sobbing – deep heavy sobs. I listened so carefully as if a professor were giving a lecture. For an hour, I didn’t move from that room. Penelope spoke and I took mental notes, minute after minute. My two-year-old child was giving me my first real lesson in self-identity.

Proud Mama


Four years after that initial conversation, I understand a very important truth: we are who we are, and there’s very little we can do to change our core. If we’re asked or even persuaded to change, there’s a chasm so deep inside of us it threatens our very life. And subsequently, the person who asks another human to change his core, is inviting death upon that person. It’s my duty as a parent to keep Penelope alive.




Penel is a boy regardless of physical attributes. From the time he could speak, he’s consistently and unanimously proclaimed ‘boy’ to the world. Even in quiet, creative moments when he’s not thinking of how the world sees him, Penel sees himself as a boy. In his dreams, his drawings and his writings, Penel is always a boy.  When he projects into the future, he imagines himself as a dad and a husband – never the opposite. Everything about Panel’s’ internal compass points to boy. Over the years, he’s never once swayed.


My Boys


I confess, I don’t fully understand transgender. I have to go deep to find meaning. And what I now know is that gender is a spectrum with some extremes and even more grey areas. Penel is not like his brothers exactly, and neither are they like him, exactly. Penel, as we now call him, is a transgender boy. That makes him unique.




Over the last four years I’ve lead our family on a quest to understand what transgender feels like. Through research, conversation and observation, we’ve become knowledgeable. This hasn’t always been easy. Penel’s dad and I have fought over this. I’m brazen and he’s conservative. I said, “Ok, let’s embrace it! Take it head on.” He said, “Slow down. Let’s not make any hasty assumptions.” It’s taken our family on a tempestuous journey that has brought us closer together. I consider us a transfamily and our son has opened a new and better world for all seven of us. To get us past the discomfort and embarrassment, I talked about it all the time with loving friends. And as a family we snuggled together and watched age appropriate videos of other transfamilies – listening to stories of kids similar to Penel and families just like ours. I made sure we said the word TRANSGENDER out loud, when others preferred to whisper it. I made sure we were outspoken. I spoke of it so frequently that it became funny, and made us smile.




By the time Penel was 4, we had fully embraced him as a boy. One of my proudest moments was writing a letter announcing the change and explaining what we were all going through.


Penel has lost not one friend on this journey. Everyone whom we’ve ever loved and all his friends have remained just as close if not closer to us. They leaned in and loved more compassionately as we took on one of the biggest challenges of our lives. Most times this has been a joyous journey. Sometimes I cry and it’s usually when I think of the near future. Who will be his first kiss? Who will love my baby? Who will understand Penel’s beautiful complexities as I do? What do I say if Penel asks for hormones? And then I think of the devastating notion that someone, one day will ridicule my Penel and show us for the first time how ugly the world can be.


We’ve had awkward situations where people have wanted to “out” Penel in public just to let others know that he “isn’t really a boy”. That hurt – more so to see the devastated look on Penel’s face than the confused look on all the faces of the adults. And in those painful moments I remember that it’s important to raise Penel with a progressive mindset. In 20 years when he’ll be a young man, ideas around gender and identity will be that much more advanced. In 20 years, when Penel is on his own and living out in the world, I don’t want him to be burdened by our current misconceptions and prejudices. I want him to be free and happy. So I think forward and I think big. I think that Penel is wonderful and brave. I think that we as parents have a serious mission. I think that we have God’s work to do. I think that Penel is lucky to know so deeply who he is.



As MamaBear, I’ve created an environment for our family that’s insulated. As protective as I am of Penel, I share his story with the world, so that we can change the prejudices against the LGTB community. My belief is that once you intimately know someone who’s transgender, everything changes. That’s exactly what happened for our family. I support Penelope’s complexities, regardless of the comments we hear: “She’s so pretty, just put a dress on her.” “Don’t encourage her to take it too far.” “She’s a tomboy and can grow out of it.” “Cutting her hair is extreme. Why do that to her?”


These days, Penel is a self-proclaimed ‘rock-star’. He excels in school, air guitar and sports. In karate he’s a shinning star with a mean, stiff-torso push up. One day, his coach called out, “Little Dude, come to the front of the class and show these weaklings what a real push up looks like!” Wrestling, check. Skateboarding, check. Basketball, check. He is relentless in his pursuits. What he wants, he grabs. What he likes, he makes his own. He’s phenomenal. My son took something as ominous as transgender and made it something so basic you barely even notice it. Now, what we notice first is just Penel.


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Beauty Explorer: Tai Beauchamp

Tai, get to know her

Tai, get to know her

Beauty Explorer: Tai Beauchamp

There are few people who intrigue me like Tai Beauchamp. I think it’s because she’s so darn elusive. She’s tall and stately. Doe-eyed and elegant. Red lipped, well spoken and so very, very well dressed. She’s Spelman College educated (of course) and ridiculously accomplished. And that’s just the seductive part. The sure-thing part is that she’s relentless. Tai Beauchamp has worked harder than most, day after day, year after year to become the most sought after beauty boss under forty. She gracefully straddles the worlds of corporate and niche and in less than two decades, she’s become the go-to-woman that big brands dial up when in need of authenticity and small brands holler at when in need of popularity. Television, live experiences, web, print – Tai is everywhere that matters in the world of beauty, fashion and lifestyle.


I’m a fan, and to get on Tai’s calendar is like trying to grab lunch with Anna Wintour. After several back and forths and multiple conversations with her team members, we carved out a solid half hour together to chat while she relaxed in her Miami hotel room just weeks before the launch of TheTaiLife.com and days before she was to appear on The View.


My Name is: Tai Beauchamp

I live in: New York or on a plane

My job is: to empower women through style!

My hustle is: 18/7

My inspiration is: my Mary and knowing God’s purpose for me.

My favorite song is: anything by Stevie Wonder.

My beauty Mantra is: if you seek beauty, you will find beauty. Seek ugly and well…

My skin looks like: honey coated almonds.

My hair is usually: in need of a cut.

My favorite feature is: My eyes because they take up most of my face and they’re honest.

What does beauty mean to me: Beauty means life, all of its imperfections, its perfect moments, smiles at strangers, laughter with friends and family – and tears too. Beauty means knowing that even when my thighs rub or my hair is damp with sweat that I am beautiful. Beauty is a gorgeous pair of new shoes. Beauty is a new fragrance or a tried and true old favorite. Beauty is the perfect red lipstick. Beauty is a hand written love note. Beauty is democracy.



I’m gearing up to launch TheTaiLife.com which is a content based hyper blog. It’s not so much about my life as it’s about the things that touch me. I use those things to inspire others. I’m not that person who likes putting my life and what I’m wearing on display, but I do realize that some of these elements inspire people. This is not about attention – I don’t need attention. And I’m not a blogger that has to build an audience – I already have relationships. This is about my mark on the world. My life on a day-to-day basis is rich. Imperfect, but rich with experience and love. I’m here to share whatever wisdom and knowledge I have from my own living and to allow others to see their possibility.


I ask my self, “What is my mark on the world?” Is it children? Is it a husband? Is it empowering women in a greater way? I connect with people through beauty, fashion, prose, conversation.  Social media enables me to do that even more now. I make it a point to respond to people and talk to them, because I really do care. That’s what makes my work meaningful and purposeful. The blog is a natural evolution, and I’m excited.



I have this saying when I love something so much: “That makes me wanna apply lipstick!” The simple act of beauty makes me happy. It’s important to tell someone how pretty she is and how much you love her lipstick. It will change the mood of an otherwise disgruntled and ugly situation to something beautiful. It will even soften a ‘hater’.  Beauty is an action. It’s a movement.


Georgia by Jodie Patterson Luxury Body Lotion: Let me just say, I love the way the lotion looks in my beauty pantry! It conjures up memories of apothecary style potions that rested on my grandmother and great grandmother’s dressers. But this lotion is a must-use! It’s light weight, but hydrating. And when my hands get dry, guess what I reach for?


Georgia by Jodie Patterson Gold Luxury Skin Cream in Lemongrass / Eucalyptus: Luxury is an understatement! This souffle is whipped decadence. My skin is feels like silk from morning to my bedtime shower.

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Beauty Boss Tries Something New


Beauty & Tech

In more Beauty Boss News: I was recently invited for a complementary wash and style courtesy of Verizon Wireless. This sounded suspicious to my mom who’s nearing 70, but for my generation and younger, beauty and technology go hand in hand.  (Think Doobop, my recently launched Beauty e-commerce site)  These days, I’m surrounded by gadgets and product, geeks and enthusiasts, beauty and technology.


On an ordinarily balmy June day I popped into Salon Bohemia in Park Slope, Brooklyn for a simple wash and blow dry.  I was expecting an average experience. but nothing out of the ordinary.  When I sat in Kiki’s chair I knew I was in great hands. She never even flinched when I pulled out all my annoying moves. First, I always bring my own product. That day I was trying the amazing line, Purely Perfect. Three genius items: a detergent-free shampoo with Aloe and oils that naturally grab dirt. A turbo-charged leave in packed with anti-oxidants and a heat protector that resists humidity. I like the simplicity of the line, so I bring it with me everywhere. Kiki just smiled when I gave her my arsenal.

Next I gave her the script: “Darling Kiki, my hair is fragile, thin and it doesn’t need much heat. A solid blow-dry and a light flat iron will do. I like it straight, parted in the middle and slightly bumped at the ends.  My curls revert easily, but no, I don’t wish to have a keratin treatment.” Kiki smiled again.

Then something really cute happened. Verizon gave me an iPad mini to pull up hairstyle references while sitting in my chair. That was smart – so of course I pulled up pictures of myself on Instagram (I figured I was the best reference for what I wanted to look like.)


beauty & Tech

Doing some research with Kiki




New Yorkers are smart; they actually told me I could keep my mini and use it for my family road trip to Niagara Falls. I took a slew of beautiful pictures throughout Canada. And now in total gratitude, I’m writing this post to say, “Thanks Verizon for reminding me how much I love New Yorkers, beauty and technology!”


Oh, Canada!





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When Great Trees Fall – Maya Angelou



dancing, Maya Angelou & Amiri Baraka

And when great souls die,

after a period peace blooms,

slowly and always

irregularly. Spaces fill

with a kind of

soothing electric vibration.

Our senses restored, never

to be the same, whisper to us.

They existed. They existed.

We can be. Be and be

better. For they existed.

-Maya Angelou


I know Dr. Angelou as my parent’s neighbor on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.  My father and she share April 4th as a birthday. In 1968, my dad, John Patterson, and Maya decided to throw a joint birthday party.  Living on the same floor of the same building on Central Park West made this easy: they planned to open their front doors and let the party flow between the two apartments. They were cool like that.  And then at 6pm on the night of the party, Dr. King was assassinated and the world went into slow motion.  The celebration turned into a wake, a gathering of people both mourning the loss and reflecting on the life of a powerful leader. Twenty-four years later, in June of 1992, I walked across the stage after Dr. Angelou spoke to our graduating class of Spelman College. I remember the slow nod she gave me as I made my way across the stage and into adulthood. Again in 2007 at the funeral of Max Roach, Dr. Angelou spoke to us as we sat, listened and reflected in Riverside Church on the man who pioneeredbebop. In each moment, she was at the center of culture and most importantly good people.


Dancing: me and belinda

dancing: me and Belinda

Before Instagram and Twitter, before uploads and likes, there was social interaction. Good people made sure to be part of the co-existing lives of others they admired.  We reached out to one another and connected – in person, over the phone and through letters. We did things to show how we felt and we got involved. There was a steady and deliberate attention to the people and things that mattered most.

Good People: Michele Mattewman, Mar Fitzpatrick, MaryAnn Fusco, Jodie Patterson, Belinda Becker, Stuart Mattewman

Good People: Michele Mattewman, Mar Fitzpatrick, MaryAnn Fusco, Jodie Patterson, Belinda Becker, Stuart Mattewman  (DNice & Tyson Beckford in the background)


Good people make us better. With them, we dance, like we did at Bethann Hardison‘s CFDA award celebration and we kiki with each other when things get rough. Wherever you find good people, you’ll find good vibration.

Read more on Maya Angelou and other Icons on my other-other site, Doobop.



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Get me out of the ethnic aisle!

brown beauty

‘brown beauty’ is in – for now

Beauty is emotion.  It’s about what’s going on deep inside of us: who we are and who we want desperately to become. We’re never simply buying a lipstick, we’re buying a feeling. And a hairstyle is actually a hair-story about rituals and traditions.  But the language around beauty isn’t quite as sophisticated.  It’s actually painfully confusing and awkward. No one get’s it right these days. My girlfriends, those chat groups, especially the clunky corporations – we’re all stumbling over our words. Perhaps because beauty and race are so closely connected, it all gets very touchy.


The words we choose to describe beauty are both delicate and deliberate. For example, I love the term ‘Brown Beauty” and use it frequently, but to others, it’s a horrid subcategory and outdated.  Use the wrong word around the wrong person, and all of a sudden you’ll find yourself in the middle of a situation. Words matter. And when beauty means so much to so many, who wants to put their foot in their mouth? Not me.


I’ve decided to make it my personal mission to rewrite some of the most silly words- like ‘ethnic beauty’ and ‘ethnic aisle’.


What’s ethnic anyway? Does my brown skin make me more racial than Gwyneth Paltrow? I’m absolutely sure she comes from some sort of heritage as well. Don’t we all?  And who chooses these words anyway? A supermarket creates an ethnic aisle and now I’m ethnic? Are we really defining ourselves based on an industry’s need to shelf product categorically and measure sales statistically?


Let’s debunk the myth that hair and skin are ethnic. Beauty has been segmenting people for too long. Black women in the ethnic aisle, white women in the general market aisle, Latinas vacillating between the two, and Asians …well, are they supposed to shop only in China Town. We see how ridiculous this becomes.


I’m Black American, but what does that mean for my fine, thin, curly hair? I use a French brand Leonore Greyl, a general market brand Rahua, a sure-thing-brand Shea Moisture and my very own niche brand Georgia by Jodie Patterson. I definitely can’t find all of that in the ethnic aisle, where only a handful of brands have existed since the 70’s. No innovation. No price differentiation. It reeks of neglect.


Beauty should be shared, cross culturally and globally. Product and tips flow from woman to woman, regardless of where the trend originates. We can find inspiration from others and make what use to be someone else’s, our own. Nora is Swiss and Vietnamese yet sites RiRi as her beauty icon and EriKa is from The Bahamas and looks to Victoria Beckham for posh, beauty ideas. Watch their videos and others of really cool women on my other, other site, Doobop.

Shop, think, live globally!


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Desiree Rogers – Older, Sexy and a Bawse

Transitions require...

Young ladies, here’s a fantastic peek  into your future. Meet Desiree Rogers

Desiree Rogers is the CEO of Johnson Publishing Co. – owner of Fashion Fair Cosmetics. She’s a bonafide Bawse.  It makes total sense that I asked for a lunch meeting with Mrs. Rogers. I wanted to hear directly from her, what her next steps would be. As the former Social Secretary to the White House, Ms. Rogers is known for thinking out of the box and making bold moves.  I’m drawn to that.

Fashion Fair is a classic. Plain and simple, FF is our Chanel. It will forever be on a pedestal. But, is it sexy and spontaneous? Does it feel fresh?  Can it seduce you, grab your attention and hold it? Desiree Rogers believes so.

While I sat with Ms. Rogers over coffee, I was reminded that in life, we must evaluate our positioning and then make a power move.  And so I ask myself, “Where do I stand? As an older woman, what is my position?

As we get older, our beauty is more about our feelings than our features. And we start to use product as our tool. Think Oprah and Faye Dunaway, Halle Berry, Phylicia Rashad, Desiree Rogers. These women are some of the most beautiful babes we know, because they’re confident.  They’re sexy because they own it. Even if they weren’t mega stars, you’d stop and notice them first in a crowd.

If truth be told, there are things that are happening to my old(er)body and my aging physical beauty that I really don’t prefer. Follicles are failing, skin is shifting and fat has taken strange detours. The beautiful flip side to getting older is there are things that happen to our confidence and our drive that give our beauty the most powerful boost.

To my ladies: There are many things that can make an older woman feel pitiful, hair loss and sagging skin are the nicest of the bunch. But we can be pitiful or we can be powerful. We can’t be both. Find what makes you powerful and then make your move. Will all the older ladies, please stand up!


(read the full article – and all about Desire’s make up on DOOBOP – my other-other site)

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Ashley Barnes: The Do-er + The Dreamer. What Is Beauty?

Dream + Do

Ashely Barnes, VP of Do, GeorgiaNY

Occupation: Partner, Georgia NY. I handle sales, marketing, growth and whatever else needs doing.


Passion: Promoting holistic ideas about beauty. I’m really proud to work for a brand that is interested in the whole person and provides natural products to enhance the beauty experience.


Daily beauty routine: Routine, ha! Every day is different for me. It depends on the day’s agenda, my mood, the weather, how much sleep I got the night before, etc. I almost always manage to wash my face and moisturize but the products I use are always changing. Right now I’m using an Aveeno face wash and following with Georgia Luxury Face Oil. If I take a shower I use Neutrogena’s Skin Clearing Body Wash or Scrub or a moisturizing white Dove bar soap and follow up with pure almond oil all over while my skin is still damp.  If I put make-up on during the week it’s almost always just a little concealer, a swipe of blush and maybe mascara. If I’m feeling spicy I’ll do a bold lip. I almost never wear color on my eyes but every once in a while I’ll try my hand at winged liquid eyeliner.


Hair routine: I am all over the place. But one rule I stick to is: I shampoo only once a week and I  never use sulfates. I love our Rosemary Shampoo by Georgia!  If I want to control my curls I use a leave in conditioner (Kinky Curly is a favorite) while my hair is still very wet, and then apply a styling product like Jane Carter Curl Defining Cream or Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie. If I want spirals I’ll do a two-strand twist, usually overnight. But most days I just try to make sure it’s moisturized and let it be. I’m happy with a big, frizzy silhouette. Recently I’ve been spraying it with olive oil before I leave the house to protect it from the cold, harsh, NY winter.


What beauty means to me: For me, beauty is living a life that leaves you so fulfilled and happy that the world can see it on your face, hear it in your voice and feel it in your presence.


Beauty Note: Be interesting, then pretty.

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Be Curious. Experience Frequently. Do Things.

Be Curious.

Be Curious.


Always stay curious enough to expose yourself to lots of opportunities.

This has been my motto for as long as I can remember. Competitive gymnast, world traveler, circus acrobat, book editor, pet shop salesperson, night-club co-owner, fashion publicist, pond swimmer, beauty entrepreneur, tech start up co-founder, loyal friend, mother of 5, devoted ‘first-lady’…these are just some of my experiences.  I stay open to the world as best as I can and I say YES more times than I say NO.

As many of you know, I recently took the plunge and partnered up. Benjamin Bernet and I launched DOOBOP, the first beauty entailer with a particular edit for women of color. Carefully edited and cherry-picked products from all over the world, personalized on-line consultations, exclusive content, killer service – all brought directly to you from the two of us. We’ve labored and argued, laughed and dreamed, lost sleep from adrenaline and lost track of days due to endless to-do lists.  On Nov 20th, 2013, DOOBOP was born.   We jumped into the fast lane of tech-start ups, and got the attention of industry vets like First Growth (arguably one of the most influential tech accelerator groups), Iman (she gave us the exclusive on her new product launch – even before Target) and Oprah (she found delight in one of our lotions). But more than anything else, we said YES to countless opportunities and ran with all our might in the direction those opportunities took us.  As Sam Fine once said to me, “in order to do something that people notice, it takes a lot of amazing shit to happen behind the scenes.”

All the passion I’ve put into my beauty line GEORGIA by Jodie Patterson, the training I went through with the Big Apple Circus, the countless hours I spent with my ex-boss Zac Posen, the creative energy I fostered helping to launch Joe’s Pub, every bit of thought and love I pour into my family – all that, helped me launch DOOBOP.  For me, work is life. I work on things that matter to me so that I can do them all day, all the time and never grow tired. Swimming in my pond is as important as writing a post for my blog as is discovering new product for the site. Some say I’m obsessive, and running ‘marathons’ on a daily basis.  True.  But this is what women do.

As our Chief Creative Officer and Co-Founder, I’d love for you to join me on this very creative and beautiful ‘next experience’.  DOOBOP – a unique voice in beauty.


DooBop Co-Founders Launching Fall 2013

Have fun.

The streets of NYC inspired us

Run the streets…literally

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It Was The Year of The Female Dragon

Still & Formless for 2014

Still & Formless for 2014


At the start of each year I begin with a somewhat clumsy entry. It’s a day or two of deep introspection where I think strongly about what I’m grateful for and deeply on my regrets. It’s a combination that often brings me to tears and then to some of my highest moments of clarity. My belief in God, my love of family, my will  – all go through a cleansing during which I try to remove layers and layers and layers of ego. My goal is to go from ‘form’ to ‘formless’ being…if only for a few minutes.

I’ve termed 2013, The Year of The Female Dragon.  We beasted and worked so hard on our goals. I watched so many of my girlfriends do more than ever before to get what they wanted. I was clear on what I wanted and took every opportunity presented. I essentially never said “no”.  Work became overwhelming at times and often took center stage to my daily routine. My family worked with me – gently, patiently, lovingly – and kept us all together.

For 2014, I continue to be focused on hitting that ‘cross court winner’, but this year I’ll do it through Stillness (or at least moments of stillness and meditation each day), and Formlessness (being without ego as much as possible). Because truthfully, as I get older and recognize how precious time is, the only thing that really matters is living as long as possible in a healthy and happy state – and this I believe, is how we do it.

Into the New Year we go – together!



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We Are Stars. 2014 is here!

Into the New Year we go - together! 2014

Into the New Year we go – together! 2014


I believe in you. I know you. I see you. Try your best each day to find joy in the little things…these happinesses will sustain you through life. There is no need to know everything, but you must find the few things you care to know a little something about. Listen. Speak. Do. love.


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On Color + Love – GeorgiaNY keeps it real



I was talking with my six year old son, Penel, the other day and through our conversation he heard me refer to our dear family friend as a “white woman”.  He looked at me and said, “WHAT, Charcy is white?!?  But she’s the same color as my foot.” Then he shrugged and said, “She looks black to me.”


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The Unrealistic Expectations of Girls: MamaBear Mondays

Mama + Ladybug

My Ladybug

The Unrealistic Expectations of Girls

When I say my life is crazy-beautiful, I truly mean it. Each day is a frenzy of obligations and deadlines – yet somehow my family and work finally feel really, really great. But as we all know, things shift so quickly and lessons are hard hitting….it’s always smart to stop and smell the flowers.

Here’s my most recent hard hitting lesson based on a story about a young teen and a grown woman – and the crazy-intense world we live in where girls are expected to do too much for too many people.

Let me put this in context: Girls are encouraged from very early on in their lives, to accommodate other people’s needs, to be pleasant and polite, to help make other people feel better and to play nicely. The steady message sent to girls is “Do for others even when it puts you at risk.”

Yes, kindness, team-work and being polite are all great attributes to keep in mind and to apply when possible….But the frequency at which girls are asked to accommodate is unrealistic. The way I see it, no one destined for a life of love and fulfillment can afford to enable selfish behavior. Not even superwoman.

Here’s what happened: My daughter was asked to participate in a fancy event. We agreed and started to prepare. The event host quickly began to make unrealistic demands on my daughter’s time to which we simply couldn’t oblige. In my house, we teach our children to focus on school and family first.  Fancy events are not part of our family’s zeitgeist. Needless to say, at the last minute, my daughter was abruptly taken off the bill for said fancy event.

Now, New York is full of fancy events, and it’s frequent that we’re asked to participate in them. So it shouldn’t have bothered me. But this did. Not because we felt snubbed by fancy people, nor because we deeply cared about the event.  It bothered me because it offended me to my core. It was counter to everything I stand for and against our family’s values.

I am not here to sell my kids out for other people’s dreams, not even my own. As moms, we’re here to help our kids understand right from wrong – beauty from ugly, to guide them down smart paths, to lead them towards brilliant and safe experiences and to show them how to love themselves – first.

As the mother of a teenage girl, I know there are a million and one things just waiting to distract her.  I see her being pulled this way and that way. It’s my job to keep her focused. So, I try my best to be the grounding element in our house. And when I see too much movement around other people’s dreams, I slow everything down. Parties, sleepovers, gadgets. All on pause. I’ve been told I can be a bit overprotective. But until someone shows me a guaranteed path to raising successful kids, I’m sticking to mine. My plan is based on Love, Guidance, Intuition and a Hands-On-Everything approach.

When we pause, we have a moment to think deeply. This is what I’ve come up with: Girls are not for sale. They have big plans and important things swirling around in their heads, which soon enough will come out and be brilliant. Our girls are not here to fit into other people’s schedules. They’re actually preparing to be leaders. Let them.

I have a teenage daughter and she is lovely, smart, sarcastic, undeniably beautiful and most of all gentle. Get in line Fancy People – I know she’s got it!





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Latham Thomas: Own Your Magic. What Is Beauty?


Latham owns her magic!

Latham, the magician




Latham Thomas

Occupation: Wellness Practitioner, Author, Founder of Mama Glow

Passion: Helping women achieve optimal wellbeing through pregnancy and claiming their power within

Work Philosophy and Strategy: Do what moves you. I really listen to the whispers within to guide me in making decisions.  If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it.

Biggest Mistake: I don’t believe in mistakes. God orders my steps so even when something is out of balance or goes wrong, I can embrace it as a lesson because everything I’ve done up until now has made me who I am.

A Treasured Success: Giving birth to my son, Fulano.

One thing no one really knows that is a credit to my success: Being a single parent thrust me into action-hustle mode as a provider. That Mama Lion role permeates my work as well.

Daily beauty routine: I rise up for the day and I think a good thought- and then plop down on the floor to stretch and meditate for a few before I wake up my son. I think that time for myself where I move my body brings blood flow to my skin and makes my face glow. I care for my face with Tata Harper skin care- rejuvenating cleanser, floral toner, and serum. I also use argan oil by Khahina beauty when it’s especially dry or cold outside.

Hair routine: Wash with Royal Rinse, and twist with cold pressed coconut oil

What does beauty mean to me: Embracing every aspect of who I am- walking in confidence, grace, and abundant radiance.

My Beauty Mantra: We each have a certain magic within us that no one else possesses. Own it! Let it shine through you and light up your path and all who come into your orbit.



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Maryam Moma. Let It Fow. What Is Beauty?

Beauty flows

Maryam Moma – Creative Director, Yamerra

Maryam Moma

Occupation: Entrepreneur, Model, Creative Director at Yamerra

Passion: Creating and giving value. I’m passionate about my family, food, travel, art, experiencing other cultures, music, and things that strengthen and enrich the mind.

Daily beauty routine: My daily beauty routine is always with natural products – cleansing, toning and moisturizing twice a day.  I use product with active ingredients to rejuvenate and soothe my skin. Depending on the pace of my day, I may inject an additional 5-minute skin pamper session, to freshen-up and revive me! My go-to’s: Origins “A Perfect World” Antioxidant Cleanser with White Tea, Selara Faces Skin Brightening Toner with Aloe, Yamerra’s Natural Facial Serum (during the day), Georgia NY Luxury Face Oil (at night), and Clear Skin Essential Oil blend by Doterra.

Hair routine: My hair routine is minimal simply because I try not to do too much to upset its natural balance. All I do is wash my hair with clarifying shampoo once a month and deep condition it every five days. I apply Yamerra’s Lemon Fire Bliss on my scalp after every deep condition (this relieves itchiness), plus a blend of organic coconut and olive oils and finally a drizzle of my Georgia NY Geranium Oil every other night before I wrap it to sleep. I shy away from pressing or blow-drying unless I need to. I’m into leaving it in is natural and tightly curled state as much as possible.

What does beauty mean to me: Beauty is a sense, like taste – it varies from person to person.  For me, beauty is something that is profound, like anything and everything that can inspire awe inside of me. Things that make me elated to be alive, sounds and especially smells (like the smell of cardamom and coconut-doused sweet plantains in my mother’s Tanzanian household).  Beauty is not just visual, to me it’s particularly about the way things feel – “That to which the soul resonates.” It is these subtle things that we can’t always put a proper word to that sets off something within.  Beauty.

Beauty Note: Love Your Skin. Love Your Hair. Love You. Beauty will flow to you and through you.



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Beauty As Your Tool

Try looking at something you love

Try looking at something you love

“The more the connection is made to health, confidence or self-esteem, the more that beauty becomes a tool that women can use…” – Linda Wells, WWD

When I fall asleep at night I never feel beautiful. Nor should I have to.

Beauty isn’t something I think about all the time, believe it or not. Most of the time I’m thinking, “Am I capable-smart-strong-loving enough?”  These are the measurements that I focus on each day. When I fall asleep at night, the last thing I’m feeling is beautiful. I’m usually doing my next-day check-list and performing mental gymnastics to figure out just how it’s all going to get done.That’s when I’m in my ‘Go-Mode’. And that alone, is exhausting.

When I do think of beauty, I use it as a tool to offer relief from all the heavy thoughts that occupy my mind. I look at something beautiful – like, something/someone with exceptional grace, color, memory or form – and that helps me to actually feel beautiful.

Beauty triggers beauty. Try it, it works!  When you want to feel beautiful, sit with something you adore, something that you know is beautiful.  Then look at it, study it, think about it. Become that beauty.  Not only will your body adjust, but your face will too.

The activity of being beautiful – inspired by things and people around.



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Sharone Komoroff: The SImple Beauty. What Is Beauty?


Simple Beauty, Sharone Komoroff

Sharone Komoroff, simple beauty

Occupation: I own, Pachute, a women’s boutique in NYC

Passion: My family

Daily beauty routine: The name of my shop, Pachute, means “simple” in Hebrew. I named it that because I really believe in keeping things simple. Simple beauty, simple clothing, simple foods. Of course I’ve not always been this way. But at 43, and since having children, and being in a really strong & loving relationship with my husband, I’ve found that simple just works better for me.

So my beauty routine is pretty basic. I wash my face with warm water when I first get up and before going to sleep. I mosturize my face with Guinot Pleine Vie. For my body I use Luxury Skin Oil by Georgia right after I shower. I love the Gardenia smell. I don’t wear make up except for maybe mascara if I’m going somewhere. I’m really into having clean teeth so I brush a lot, too much actually, with Crest Whitening Paste. I’m in love with my fragrance, Mure et Musc Extreme by L’Artisan.…that’s it!

Hair routine: I highlight my hair, and cut it a few times a year.  I’ve been to so many different people, and  the truth is most have not been that good. I’m still chasing the look I had when I was 16, on the beach everyday in Haifa, Israel, where I’m from. The best hair cutter and colorist was my first, my friend Menny. He still cuts it now when I go home (or when he comes here). He’s magic! About a year ago, I finally found someone really great here in NYC.  Ludovic works at Alessandro Mangerini.  I wash it a few times a week with Dove shampoo and Conditioner. I blow the front pieces and let the rest of it air dry. I then spray Summer Hair by Fekkai all over…it’s supposed to give hair a ‘beach look’.

What does beauty mean to you: I see a lot of women everyday in my shop…and I have really found that nothing makes a women more beautiful than happiness. Happiness is beautiful.

Beauty Note: The longer you stare in the mirror the less beautiful you look.

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He’s a Hero, Accept it! Charles Ramsey. by Candice Cook /GeorgiaWORLD

Candice Cook (far left) + me + Sophia Chang

Candice Cook (far left) + me + Sophia Chang


GeorgiaWORLD Guest Bloggers: These women are contagious trailblazers and fresh-thinking forecasters – all stunning, interesting and opinionated. They’ve connected their dots and harnessed multiple passions to become what I think are the blueprints for the new modern woman – each approaching life, success and their own personal beauty from the inside out. Total Girl Crush!

Candice Cook.  She’s an attorney, business strategist, writer, and philanthropist living in New York.  Her company The Cook Law Group & Ca-Co Global Inc. can be found here! Candice is passionate about current events.


Let’s think about the two women who were rescued.  If it were not for the heroic measures of Mr. Charles Ramsey, they might very well still be chained and raped, and still as victims to what can only be described as a brutal, violent, vicious crime against women and children.

What I know is that the police came several times to the house, yet it was Ramsey that saved them. Forget the Big Mac for now, Mr. Ramsey has earned our respect. Fine, SNL, get your comedy on. But seriously, the significance of what he did is being insultingly overshadowed. The fact that the women were kidnapped and impregnated has taken a back seat to some strange comedy.

We make assumptions about the goodness of others based on their economic status. Let’s all acknowledge that Ramsey is the personification of good.

The interesting thing is that the spirit of Mr. Ramsey is and remains (throughout all of the press and despite the repugnant mockery) beautiful.  He is who he is – which at the very least is a hero. Best of all, he owns himself.  His full self, complete with a sordid and imperfect history. Period.

That is inner beauty at its finest.  He’s not concerned with being society’s version of a Clark Kent hero nor is he taking the jibes thrown at him with hostility or even a bit too seriously.  He’s stated that he is simply an American. I assert, that in addition, he is also awesome.


Candice can be found on Twitter here!  She lives in Brooklyn (of course) with her fiancé and their shih tzu.

For more on Candice and her writing, feel free to check her out here and here!

Read more on Mr. Ramsey here (http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2013/05/07/charles_ramsey_amanda_berry_rescuer_becomes_internet_meme_video.html).



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Advice for Husbands

Man + Woman

It should always be like….Hot SEX on a Platter


I though I’d open up this week with some insightful humor, from a woman I know dearly, but remains anonymous for these purposes.  Read the entire thing, it’s so damn hysterical …and right on point. Share it. Comment on it!



I came across a book written in the 50’s called Advice for Husbands. It said things like, “Don’t let your wife find you slouched over and ill postured in your stance. She wants to see a broad shouldered, capable man, even when you don’t feel like it.”


There are some valuable tips in that book – but I had some of my own that I thought worth sharing….


When you want to have sex, don’t ask me if I want to do it. Just touch me and start the engines and see if I follow your lead.  If I do, good for us. If I don’t, let me off the hook nicely by not taking it personally, abruptly pulling away or making a comment about frequency/when/why… I don’t want to reject you and usually it’s not about you. Just let it roll.

Don’t act like a frat boy about sex. Don’t say things like “maybe I’ll get laid” or start or end any sentence with “dude.”


Remember that in bed we want a guy who hunts and kills things, but who also reads literature and who could build a fire with no matches – in the woods with bare hands. In real life, although some of this may still be true, we want someone who rescues animals on the side of the road, reads the newspaper and fixes dinner now and then. Try to find the balance.


Remember that just because you don’t have to have game anymore – we’re married after all – you still need to bring new content to the conversation. Stay interesting by staying interested in the world – not just in your sports team or in your work – other things. Let’s not become that couple you see in restaurants who are aged and barely speaking. We justify it now with, “oh look how comfortable they are.” But the truth is, I never want to be that comfortable.


Don’t comment about how much small things cost, or that “it’s a good thing they’re paying for that” or balk at occasional luxuries. I want to feel rich. I know my state of the union, how much we really have in the bank, etc, and won’t abuse it. But talking about or commenting on the small stuff is boring and makes me want to loan you twenty bucks to be quiet.


Don’t spaz out and lose control if you’re running late, can’t find a parking spot, or are getting a ticket. Be cool. Remember…….I’m watching.


Don’t curl up in any tiny ball kind-of-way. I shouldn’t have to explain.

Don’t eat frozen yogurt unless we’re all having some. This isn’t anything you want to be caught spearheading.


Preface questions you know I’ve already answered with “babe I’m sorry- you’ve told me this 5 times already – but I got distracted when I was buying you a present off Gilt…What time is our reservation tonight?”


Throw away those underwear. You know the ones I mean.


Please don’t mix your sports and fitness gear with your street wear. Those sunglasses look great on a road bike with spandex, but with jeans they just look like a Spider-Man toy from a Happy Meal. Also sport socks go with sneakers – and that’s all they go with. That’s why I bought you those cool ones from Paul Smith- feel free to unwrap them from the packaging.


I like it when you have specific suggestions for things– like where to go to dinner. “Where do you want to go?” just feels like another decision I have to make.


If I’ve been away from home, allow me ten minutes to settle back in. Shit has been put in places it doesn’t belong and I expect that. So I clean up, then I’d prefer to sit down and relax, quietly. Don’t ask me about this process, which can sometimes come off as grumpy or unhappy to be home. It has nothing to do with you or the kids or my happiness rating. I’m just getting things sorted back into their system so my domestic life is semi-under control. This is the last time I’m going to explain this phenomena.



Some of you will read this and laugh, but you’ll comfort yourself with knowing none of these apply to your life. You’ll pity the chump who’s married to the writer– and then forget this list forever. Here’s the truth: I’m married to an awesome guy who is a world-champion athlete, is sincere and honest, totally loyal, considerate, cleans the kitchen for me without asking, gets up early with the kids spontaneously, has changed as many diapers as I have, uses great “technique” when given the opportunity, grocery shops, handles all of the onerous bill-paying/financial analysis tasks, asks if there’s something he can do at the crazy dinner/bath/bedtime hour and generally is just a cool, insightful, smart, wonderful person to be married to.

I feel lucky. I also feel proud that he’s my guy when I see him in a crowd walking toward me – I still think he’s very handsome and sexy. So here’s my advice to you: assume, that as great as your life is, and it is, these also might apply to your situation. I wrote these because I want to not only stay married, but also stay attracted – There’s a big difference. I think women all over the world feel the same way!

-anonymous woman


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Words Matter. Compliments vs Daggers

I'm in the right place at the right time.

In the right place at the right time


I’m too often second guessing myself, and almost always feeling some level of displacement. It’s this weird, schizophrenic thing that women, generally do.  At one moment, we question if  we’re doing enough. And then a split second later we’re wondering how we can do more. And then the next we’re asking ourselves if we’re even smart enough to be holding the reins. As a mom, the doubt is always there and it’s difficult to get past. Weekly, I’m like: Am I working too much and neglecting my kids? Am I not working enough to be competitive with others in my field? Am I splitting my time too thin to be successful at anything? Am I totally effing up?

I would bet that these questions roll through the minds of most women, cluttering up valuable head-space of the young and the old, the veteran and the neophyte.

We know self doubt is deadly. It’s been known to stop us in our tracks and kill all gumption – right before we’re able to make good on our big and wonderful dreams.

Men, on the flip side, rarely question themselves in this way. PapaBear would never ask himself if he should ‘stay home with the family and not work – all for the betterment of the family’. The words sound utterly ridiculous – when used in reference to men. PapaBear is known to hop on a plane to Ghana and be gone for several weeks – simply because the work has to get done, and the job requires it. Two days lead time, the flight is booked and he’s off. Now of course, he misses us, but he feels no guilt (key component). And the world doesn’t blink an eye, because we collectively believe that men can (and should) submerse themselves in the ‘world’  in order to be their best and most effective. Men believe they can do it all, and so, they fulfill their destinies.

Women are torn. We question: Can we do it all and be good at it?

Mama. 1979, Principal of The Patterson School

Mama. 1979, Principal of The Patterson School

My call to action: Every woman in our crew needs to be hyper aware of the words we choose when we talk to each other. Pick words that encourage us to do it all – to be  mother and entrepreneur, nanny and personal chef, blogger and wife, employee and boss. World traveler and girlfriend. We need not ever talk with words that make us feel as if we’re missing out, incapable, or unaware. Those words are thrown at us like daggers on a daily basis, so let’s simply throw them out the window.

Instead, let’s speak with each other as though we understand how hard it is to do all that we do. Let’s support each other with words and actions that encourage us to think bigger.  Sarcasm, comparisons, judgements – let’s get rid of them.

Compliment instead. “You’re so focused on work, great job.” “Your an awesome mom!” “I love how adventurous you are.” “Your kids are going to benefit from all the great things you do.” “You’re so smartl! Go get whatever you want.” Words matter.

Let’s make each other believe in our multi-layered and complex lives, so that we’re confident of being in the right place at the right time, doing the right thing(s).


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Delphine Diallo: The Everything-Woman. What Is Beauty?

Delphine Diallo. The Everything-Woman

Delphine Diallo. Self Portrait.

Delphine Diallo


Occupation: Photographer, collagist, director.


Passion: Everything….Research, science, anthropology, psychology, religions, mythologies, traveling, photography, reading, life.


Daily Beauty Routine: I wake up and jump right into the shower – scrubbing my body with a luffa glove & Origins, Modern Friction. I clean my face with Brightening Foaming Cleanser by l’occitane. I use a body oil called Spring Flower by Aura Cacia plus a little touch of White Musk, perfume oil from the Body Shop.


My make-up is “quick”. First I always apply Miracle Skin Transformer, Vanish by Sarah McNamara. Then a Bobby Brown foundation plus a light retoucher from Yves St Laurent.  A quick touch of Bobby Brown Cheeks in Pale Pink for my cheeks AND lips. A little bit of bronzing powder by MAC is always essential. Next come the eyes, definitely the most important part of my make up routine. Purple shadow, a great mascara, and a black pen to draw a line underneath – creating the illusion that they’re bigger.  That’s it, voila!


Hair Routine: I simply brush – all the time – using Silk from Biotherapy.


What Does Beauty Mean To Me: Ha! After explaining all the work I do to feel good, it’s not honest if I just talk about ‘internal beauty’. Truth: Both the outside and the inside need to be combined and balanced. Sometimes, beauty is simply a feeling or an emotion and has nothing to do with the superficial. It’s beyond time and age. Beauty can be found everywhere, especially if we’re able to ‘pass’ beauty on to family and friends. Because truthfully, people make people beautiful.


Beauty Note: Love yourself and express yourself. Be confident and your life will be beautiful.

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Raising Free + Powerful Kids!

Dont be afraid of pain

Don’t be afraid of pain

You’ve never met a winner who hasn’t felt real pain.


Body blows are not something most young girls, or women, are used to receiving. Under the normal circumstances, we are thought of as something to preserve. Nice, maintained, pretty, reserved and fragile are concious and subconcious descriptors of females. In 2013, we are still preparing our girls for the proverbial cotillion.


My boys on the other hand, are training themselves for the battlefield, so it seems. Self induced body slams, punches, and kicks all through each and every day are the norm with my boys.  It’s like they were born to wrestle and fight.  Throwing and knocking themselves into eachother and anything close by. They love physical combat and thrive off of it. Look at men, they get off on the agony of defeat and use the pain to fuel their next win. For them, life is the proverbial boxing ring, and winners expect a healthy dose of pain.


In my house, The Teen, our 13 year old girl, is treated like a flower by her brothers (most of the time) with limbs as delicate as petals, and hair that the boys actually sit and brush for hours (yes, that actually does happen). No one dare body slam the princess. It’s just not done (most of the time).


A few days ago, while hanging poolside at the Shore Club – with two of my dear male friends – we chatted-up on the beauty business, female identity & girl power. Gymnastics came up.  Years ago I was a state-level, competitive gymnast (and circus acrobat in the Big Apple Circus).  It was part of my normal daily routine to throw my body around apparatus and quite often bang and bruise limbs, hips even the occasional face.


It just hit me, I’m absolutely rebuking this idea of preserving the female body. Let’s get knocked up – in the other sense. Let girls take some blows – physical and otherwise, starting when young, so that we know just how strong we are and how strong we need to be.


Clearly, I’m not condoning physical abuse in any way.


As gymnasts, we tried new moves – death-defying tricks, just to see if we could “land” the impossible.  We failed over and over again, got up, failed some more, and eventually we did it. Double layouts and tsukaharas (watch how Gabby does it, here!) – these were achievable goals for us, but only after weeks and weeks of pain. We leaned in.


Through fearless behavior we were able to achieve great success. But if truth be told, we were actually afraid. Fear was a given, but not a barrier. It didn’t stop us. Nor did the idea that we might get hurt, stop us.


There’s something to be said for challanging the female body – despite the pain of obstacles, of learning curves or of mean people – we’ve got to lean in.


Truth: Girls are not to be preserved. We’re supposed to experience pain in life and go beyond to do great things. Just imagine where we’d be if we hadn’t pushed the existing ideas on femininity and gender.


“In the 19th century when women of all races began their drive for the vote, what was the argument most often used against then? That voting was a masculine concern, and that therefore women who attempted it would become (or already were) “mannish”, “unwomanly” and “unnatural”. In short, sexually suspect.” Ms. Magazine, 1980



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Judia Black. Enthusiast: What is Beauty?


Pretty is as Pretty does – Judia Black, Food + Wine Enthusiast

Judia Black

Occupation: Entrepreneur, Sommelier, Food & Wine Enthusiast, Lover of Life

Passion: I’m compassionate and I love connecting with others.  Seeing the best in people and then helping them reach their height potential – that’s what I’m really into.

Daily Beauty Routine: I meditate and exercise every day, that’s how I start my process. Plus, I include drinks and foods with a high water content. For skin cleansing I use Cetaphil, and sometimes Olay Regenerist for an additional exfoliation.  My skin tends to be uneven, so I use Cellex-C or Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum to even out my tone and eliminate fine lines.  Lastly, Georgia Face Oil for moisturizing.

Hair Routine: I lightly moisturize everyday with an easily absorbed oil like Argan Oil or Shea Butter. I wash my hair every three days, deep condition with a hydrating mask at least once a week and a protein treatment once a month.

My Must-Haves: I’m always experimenting with new products, but try my best to use a low-sulfate shamppo. I love the Moroccan Oil moisturizing mask and leave-in products! Sarynakey African Shea Oil products with natural keratin are great too. AG Fast Food is a wonderful leave-in conditioner for when I don’t have time to do a deep conditioning mask.

What Beauty Means to Me: Beauty starts within – literally, you’re as beautiful as you feel!  Plus, I believe, it’s all about love, and the person who truly loves herself and humanity – radiates beauty.

Beauty Note: My grandmother used to say to me, Pretty is as Pretty does. Action resonates with me.



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Jada Pinket Smith on Blended Families

Blended, Mixed and Mashed-Up


Jada Pinket Smith is a smart woman. She’s so precise with her words that I was compelled to share some of them with you.  Plus, the subject matter hit home for me and sent me into deep thoughts about my very own blended family. Beautiful and quite complex – The Blended Family has become normal to so many. We are broken and whole. Joyous and sad. We struggle yet we are the most mighty. Under the illest of circumstances, a beautiful thing arises.


A letter to a friend:

Blended families are NEVER easy, but here’s why I don’t have a lot of sympathy for your situation because… we CHOOSE them. When I married Will, I knew Trey was part of the package…Period! If I didn’t want that…I needed to marry someone else. Then I learned if I am going to love Trey…I had to learn to love the most important person in the world to him…his mother. And the two of us may not have always LIKED each other… but we have learned to LOVE each other.

I can’t support any actions that keep a man from his children of a previous marriage. These are the situations that separate the women from the girls. Your behavior is that of an insecure child who needs to recognize her own weaknesses that MUST be strengthened to take on the task at hand. We can’t say we love our man and then come in between him and his children. THAT’S selfishness…NOT love. WOMAN UP… I’ve been there…I know. My blended family made me a giant… Taught me so much about love, commitment and it has been the biggest ego death to date. It’s time you let your blended family make you the giant you truly are.


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How My Very Small Business Just Expanded. Flow: Breakthrough

When Control No Longer Works


I’m never comfortable releasing control – just ask my Teen, my PapaBear, or even my mother. To release and to let go is not in my DNA. I prefer to hold on tight and stay involved. I like the feeling of being tied to something – even entangled. Bizzar but true. There’s something romantic about it.  And yes, I’ve become a very loyal friend because of this, with close compatriots from as far back as the sixth grade.

On the flip side, keeping control doesn’t always pan out well for me. Just ask my holistic doctor, my therapist or my business associates. For me, staying in ‘control’ has kept my my business small (and body toxic).  For Control Freaks like myself, it’s difficult to delegate and therefore to scale our businesses. I’ve tried to do everything on my own, but of course that’s simply not possible.  One can’t be Creative Director, Operations Manager, CFO, CEO, Publicist, Marketing Director, Brand Strategist, and Sales Rep all at once.

The One-Woman-Show simply does not work outside of a burlesque environment.

The truth is, we entrepreneurs have to release control so that things can grow, energy can flow and EVERYTHING moves forward.

Over the past few months, I’ve been working on expanding my team. I now have Sales Reps (Check this one) (and this one too!) who sell our line, and an intuitive Gap Closer who takes my brilliant ideas and completes them, a trusted CFO who keeps us up and running, a divine Creative Muse, a brilliant Execution Team of smarties who are all very capable of running their own businesses and probably will one day, and not to be forgotten a Wellness Expert who clears my body and mind of debris – so that I can keep us all moving forward.

I’m committed to winning – in business, health and happiness. And to win, I needed to release.


– Jodie

*Joseph Ghartey – CFO

* Johnica Reed – Gap Closer

*Janice Bond – Sales & Culture Guru (South & Midwest)

*Rakia Reynolds – Sales, Marketing & PR Maven (North East)

*Talmie Shimadai – Digestive Health Expert – 718 676-1500


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Too Cool For High School: Beauty & The Teen

Fran+Norah+Ali – My H/S posse – dancing the night away at AREA


High School Beauty:

HAIR: Super wide curling iron, daily. Flipped bang. Lemon to highlight the tips (ouch).

MAKE-UP: Black eyeliner on the outside and inside of my eyes. Face Powder.

SKIN: DYI Plain-Yoguart facials, weekly.

ATTITUDE: Everything is possible.


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Cure Your Winter Blues. Whatever Wednesdays. Random Jodie Moments

Remember the sun


This winter has been cold and full of hard work. When the weather ices up, all six of us tend to hibernate, gather together and slow – it – down.  Staying indoors, where it’s cozy and full of our favorite possessions, helps us get through the dark months, which for me can lack charm.  So, we huddle and wait patiently for spring.

I’ve learned to sift through old photos, read, read, read and reminiscence. I conjor up memories of warmth and sunshine – water and travel – and then,  I wait patiently.

Here’s a good one: WATER MEMORIES

Jump In!


There were years when I didn’t go in the water. Not the salt pool, nor the fresh water pond. Even the sunny Delaware River down the road couldn’t tempt me. And if you ask me now ‘why’, I’d have to say, ‘I was simply too tired’.

It was a combination of a new relationship, thirty-six months of pregnancy, 2.5 years of nursing and an intense loss of self. Yes, some of life’s most beautiful gifts like love and family can cause a momentary and very deep identity crisis. Just ask any mother/wife/daughter.

For years, my body was exhausted and everything felt like a chore. So most of the time, when not frantic at work, I was sitting still, somewhere to the side, while the world enjoyed the spoils of life.

We have this gorgeous pond nestled in the hills of Pennsylvania. It’s just about perfect. Oval in shape. Framed with lavender bushes and slate rocks all around. Water the color of the evergreens. Crisp, so clear you can see your toes while you wade. And then, these little pools of warm water that surprise you when you swim through them. Warm and soft – the way pond water can be. It’s a love pond – one of the greatest gifts my husband has ever given to me.

But for years, I wouldn’t go in.

In the spring and summer times, we basically run a camp from our house. Oftentimes ten children at a time, even more live in our pond. All my kids learn to swim in that water. We throw life jackets on in the morning, and send them out to explore for the rest of the day. First they sit on the raft, trepidatious, with only toes touching the water. Then, by July, a very splashy Doggie Paddle seems appropriate. And sooner than you’d expect, they’re jumping off the raft – lanky legs flailing and big toothy grins flashing. I have years of water memories through the eyes of my kids.

‘Swimming in the pond’ is a loose term. For us it’s come to mean all things adventurous and daring, whimsical and silly, serene and holly. The Pond is a world unto itself. A world you can enter when ready and stay as long as the sun is up.

It wasn’t until my body was given back to me, that I was ready.

These days, with no kids hanging on, I sit on the big rocks while the sun is high above and wait – but not for too long.  Just until I’m good and warm and the kids can’t wait another moment. I start to stand up. “Oh Mama, are you coming in? You’ve GOT to. You’re gonna LOVE it! We’re comin’ to get you!”

The Captain

And then, when the raft and its captains are near, I leap on like a fairy. But only for a second. I’m in motion and can’t be stopped. Eager faces waiting to see what I’ll do next…I leap right off and jump into our pond – arms stretched high above my head. Water splashes everywhere and faces filled with joy applaud me. Like they can’t believe I’ve done it. Mama’s IN the water.

Then everything goes quiet and my body is cool. I’m under water and surrounded by all that is adventurous and daring, whimsical and silly, serene and holly. I’ve returned. All those years that I was tired, I’d forgotten how water can help to find yourself. My pond is my pathway.



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SheaRadiance – The Best Hair Trilogy Out! Transformation Tuesday


Dry scalp, weak hair – NOT my problem

One of my dirty-little secrets is my dry scalp. Sounds silly and trite, but I’m not joking. Quite frequently, I’m all dolled up and ready to go get ‘em, and then, my freakin’ scap interrupts my flow. It’s not dandruff. It’s not about frequent washings. It’s an internal thing.

My Krill Oil supplements are a god-send. They help with a myriad of things from scalp, skin and overall hydration, to heart health. But you have to be religious about taking Krill Oil, and if not, there in lies the problem. I naturally tend to have a dry scalp and cuticles, plus I ran out about two weeks ago, plus I’m having the hardest time getting to the darn store to re-up.

I recently tried something new! The most divine, 3-step hair treatment made by the most divine woman, Funlayo. Here’s what I used:

1/ SheaRadiance Shampoo (no SLS)

2/ SheaRadiance Moisturizing Hair Milk

3/ SheaRadiance Nourishing Hair Repair Cream


All three products are natural based, and high performing – with immediate results.

*Wash two times with the shampoo

*Quick rinse with very warm water

*Quick rinse with cold water

*Spritzed my entire head with Hair Milk, saturating the strands

*Spread a full dime size of the Repair Cream evenly throughout my hair – from root to ends. (I could have even used less)

After my usual roller set, my hair and scalp were amazing. My naturally thin hair felt healthy and strong, shinny, soft and best of all – no dry scalp! My style held it’s shape all night long, and that’s big news for me. Everything about these three products works!

I think I’ve met my new best friend.


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Penelope, Gender & Our Very Own Superhero: Mama Bear Mondays

I thought I knew it all – and then came Penelope


If things in life made sense at first glance, life would be dull. We have to go deep to find meaning.

Meet Penelope. My third child. The self proclaimed Superhero. Penelope defies most stereotypes and challenges anyone she meets to re-think ideas of gender, ability, and most of all happiness.

Penelope in the middle

I think it’s in her nature to be different. Dresses and skirts…not a chance. Button fronts and ties are more her style. Think Shilo x 100. In karate class she’s a shinning star with a mean, stiff-torso push up. On day one, teacher called out, “Little Dude, come to the front of the class and show these pansies what a real push up looks like!” Wrestling, check. Skateboarding, check. Soccer, check. I work overtime to understand her head space. And it’s not easy, because at the same time, Penelope is my most gentle artist with a secret passion for all the pretty jewels on my bedside table. Perhaps not for herself to wear, but more to marvel over and to touch. Go figure.

Penelope the soccer star

These are just small examples of a very complex person. I have yet to find a single definition that works for her. The more I observe, it’s clear that I’m learning from Penelope. Learning about drive, determination and accomplishing what others might not have even imagined for you.  Mostly I’m learning about the layers of interests that can contrast each other but exist with in one person. In order to be complete, we have to touch each of our layers. Scary but true.

Penelope is our Superhero

I support Penelope’s complexities. Regardless of the comments we hear: “She’s so pretty, just put a dress on her.” “Don’t encourage her to take it too far. She’s a tomboy and can grow out of it.” “Cutting her hair so short is extreme. Why would you do that to her?”

My New Year’s resolution is a promise to my children. From here forward I will not waste a single moment trying to redirect my kids from their natural selves. I’ll champion for them. I’m here simply to move the world out of their way so that they can think – uninhibited – about themselves at first, and then about the world surrounding them.

Everything that is worth something, begins inside the individual.  Finding pride and joy in our quirks is the key to life. Different is so normal these days.

Penelope top right

2013 is about trusting ourselves and listening to our voices. Recognizing that form follows feeling and we are who we feel ourselves to be. Period. Start from there and the world is yours.

For 2013 – remove just one filter from your vision – and life will be different.

Penelope – Don’t waste one nanosecond trying to package her.


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Get Your Beauty In Order for the New Year. New You. Fancy Fridays

Beauty Without Struggle GEORGIA by Jodie Patterson


Happy New Year!

I’m sure we’re on the right path. I just know it.

‘Beauty Without Struggle’ is my motto this year and forever more. So done with the ugly side of this industry. Let’s redefine what beauty truly means.

I made our line for you!  Busy, global-minded women. Well traveled and hyper-thoughtful.

Here’s what’s going on. Things changed. I evolved, and of course the brand followed my lead.  I’ve been busy traveling the world, soaking up time with family, and running my own business. It’s this ‘complete woman’ that inspired our re-launch.

Georgia Becker – Creative Muse

Meet Georgia Becker, the Creative Muse behind our company. She also happens to be my teenage daughter. She not only inspired the creation of the company, she also played a major role in our re-launch. She’s dope. She’s got her hands in branding, customer relations, ingredient sourcing and technology. Georgia brings a particular vision to the family business.

“I like what our company symbolizes: luxury, adventure and travel – all with out being careless and too expensive. Our customer is a woman who feels young. I’m young so the branding comes natural to me.” – Georgia Becker

I’m 42 and I get how important it is to be surround by people of all ages. I rely on Georgia to keep our company fresh and give me insight into a particular area of a woman’s psyche.  All women, young and older, want a bit of whimsy, lightness and adventure! Georgia embodies that. She speaks to the part of us that will always be uninhibited and adventurous.

We’re a family-affair! And my thirteen year old, beauty junkie, is perfect for the position.  It may also be in her genes. She’s taken her cue from Serge Becker, her dad. He’s the creative mind behind New York hot spots La Esquina, Miss Lily’s, The Box, Joe’s Pub, Bowery Bar, and MK. She’s off and running!

It’s so obvious, we all have a story to tell and a voice to release.  Ours is one of family, travel, business, culture, design, and simple beauty. Tell your story.

There’s magic that exists in the boudoir for all women. We brought that heritage to life. Georgia is at best, an awakening for women who will find in it, inspiration for their own search of beauty. Beauty is Simple. We know this. The path to true beauty is natural and totally individual. Find you own beauty.


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Birchbox + Georgia. Beauty Entrepreneurs Unite

Lights. Camera. Action.


Beauty mavens? Absolutely.


Behind the scenes @ the Dell #Inspire shoot

Me and my clique, clique, clique….Birchbox * Refinery 29 * Chloe + Isabel * Stella & Dot…


Meet my clique, the Dell #Inspire 100, an amazing group of entrepreneurs, world changers and creatives. A motley crew of over achievers and dreamers – just my type. No need to ever ask for any more than this…Smart, beautiful people, and proven blue prints for success!  I’m talking Refinery 29, Birchbox…the list of success stories is official.

Katia, the uber cool co-founder of Birchbox and I were able to steal a quick moment to chat ‘beauty and the start-up’. Here’s the interview!

Katia: Where were you in your life when you decided to create GEORGIA? What was your first step towards making GEORGIA a reality?


Jodie: Seven years ago I was being pulled in every direction. I was the Director of PR for Zac Posen, pregnant, in a new relationship and living out of boxes. Things weren’t adding up and I knew I had to change my life. I assessed everything and everything told me to start a beauty company. I wrote a business plan, found a great partner and raised capital.


Katia: What is your most important customer service policy?

Jodie: Find common ground and connect – for every situation. We find similarities that link us to our customer so that the language we speak, the deals we offer, the product we make, the designs we choose, the services we provide, all resonate.


Katia: How are you using technology to advance your business?

Jodie: My business is inspired by my lifestyle and social media is a big part of how I share my world and interact with my customer. The ingredients I use in our products are discovered while I travel. The simplicity of my line is inspired by my busy family-life. I work wherever I can grab a moment. My devices allow me to never miss an opportunity to capture, share, produce and deliver.


 Here’s how I came at her…..

Jodie: So many of our ‘businesses practices’ are learned years before we start working. What were two priceless take-aways you learned at Harvard and at home that help guide your business?


Katia: At home: My mother taught me what it means to encourage and show people how amazing even the smallest accomplishments are–she was the queen of finding the kernel of genius in the everyday and making me feel like it is the sum of the parts that really amounts to accomplishments. That perspective has been a foundational part of my management style. I am proud that we have attracted the best talent and when I touch base with them I find those things and highlight them. Of course there are growth opportunities and improvement areas, but the truth is, I believe that we are accomplishing small miracles every day that amount to creating a major movement in ecommerce together.

At school: Bless our operations classes in business school. As would be expected, we learned the core concepts of throughput time and utilization. Though I do not over see the logistics part of our business, the concepts have framed my thinking around allocating resources, communication flow, the various handoffs and load balancing.


Jodie: Expansion is arguably one of the toughest components to small business success. How did Birchbox go from start-up to dominant force in the beauty industry – in just 2 years? Was timing part of your strategy?

Katia: I still think of us as a start up because we are two years old and always looking for ways to reimagine our processes to accomplish our big vision–define and lead in discovery retail.


But yes, we have grown and the great fortune of rapid adoption in just two short years. “How did we get here?” is a question that often pops into my head. I always come back to the same answer: step by step, brick by brick… I often describe this experience as building the road beneath you, right before you take the next step (yes, often I describe it as a road over an abyss).


Jodie: Birchbox is several companies in one: media, editorial, e-commerce technology and beauty.  What was your inspiration, and were you thinking multi-tiered from inception?

Katia: We came up with the idea because the above is what solved the problem that we were trying to address–how can you sell someone a beauty product for the first time ever, online? Beauty is such a category that requires touch, try, smell before you are ready to become a customer of that product. Therefore online presents an inherently hard channel for first time purchase. So we designed the business to model what we felt was core to discovery of new product. That is how we arrived at this multi tier business model.


…..Read more about the Dell #Inspire 100 here


Jodie Patterson is the Owner and Creative Director of GEORGIA by Jodie Patterson, a beauty company that offers more than just product. GEORGIA helps women ignite their inner and outer beauty through daily doses of natural beauty care, healthy salon services, inspirational beauty tips and content focused on family, travel, small business, fashion and health. Katia Beauchamp is one of the co-founders of Birchbox, a discovery commerce platform for both men and women.Birchbox redefines the retail process by offering consumers a personalized way to discover, learn about, and purchase the best beauty, grooming, and lifestyle products.

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Millana Snow. Entrepreneur: Fancy Friday. What is Beauty?

Millana Snow – Founder, Serene City Retreat

Millana Snow


Occupation: Entrepreneur – founder, Serene City Retreat + Model/Actress

Passion: People. I love learning from people and about the things that connect us universally – food, music, travel! I thoroughly enjoy making new friends.

Daily Beauty Routine: I’ve learned that ‘simple’ is best for me! I use a very simple cleanser like Cetaphil, then Avene serum.  If I have time, I wait about 30 minutes and then use Laura Mercier oil-free tinted moisturizer, mascara and a nice lipstick/gloss. I also like to use natural things from my own kitchen – lemon on a problem spot, caffeine to exfoliate and coconut oil to moisturize really dry skin!

Hair Routine: I have learned to be very kind to my hair. I only finger comb my hair under the water, which I do everyday while moisturizing it with One Deva Conditioner or L’Oreal Ever Creme. I try to shampoo only once a week. My stylist made me promise to deep condition at least twice a month, so I often do that while in my gym’s sauna, I LOVE Carol’s Daughter Monoi mask under a shower cap for about 20 minutes.

What Does Beauty Mean to Me: I’m convinced that beauty really does start from the inside. Even in the most literal way. I notice that when I feel good, I look good… but when stressed or worried I get a breakout or look tired. For beauty, as with everything, our outer life is a reflection of our inner life.

Beauty Note: When I stand in my own power, strength and beauty, that energy will precede me wherever I go. Beauty isn’t how I look, but the energy I bring and carry with me. When I know that my strength, glow and beauty is my own, (and that it is unique and non-competitive) I will always stand out as a true beauty.



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Jihae Kim – Self Employed: Breakthrough Thursday. Small Business Crossroads

Jihae Kim “Like a female Thome Yorke” – NY Press


Being beautiful on the outside isn’t enough.

My girl Jihae knows this and has nailed it.  She’s both successful and beautiful.  For her, everything starts from the inside and then is expressed outwardly.  Her style, her voice, her stance – they’re all reflections of how she’s thinking and feeling.

In fact, she’s been able to create a business around her emotions.  Jihae, like many of us, is her own brand (…and band). She’s captured her essence and shares it with us. Her way is through song.

I’m sure you’ve seen her on billboards for Eileen Fisher and Banana Republic, modeling.  But even more impressive is her stage performance.  She has a voice that will stay with you long after the performance. And you’ll find yourself watching every subtle move she makes.

Please join me on December 4th for her live performance. You can buy tickets here

Mercury Lounge

217 E. Houston, St – NYC

7:30 – showtime 


Here’s one of her favorite songs. Written by Jihae. Inspired by Ghandi.

All the Same


You and I may disagree

Can’t let go of centuries passed

Do you recall our forefathers’ creed

Winners now will later be last

One fine day we’ll see the light

One fine day the sun will shine

Evenly on your face and mine

Suddenly without a fight


You and I can’t disagree

All we want is our sisters and brothers back

You and I can’t disagree

All we need is salvation back


One fine day we’ll see the light

One fine day the sun will shine

Evenly on your face and mine

Suddenly without a fight


You and I can’t disagree

An eye for an eye

makes the whole world go blind

You and I can’t disagree

All we want is a peace of mind


One fine day we’ll see the light

One fine day the sun will shine

Evenly on your face and mine

Suddenly without a fight


Girl Crush by Jodie Patterson is a web series I produced on the activity of being beautiful. I focus on several women who’ve nailed that process. Jihae is one of those women. I hope you take a moment to watch it…it’s 8 minutes of total inspiration!


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My Tech-Tribe, the Dell #Inspire 100: Whatever Wednesday…Random Jodie Moments


Here’s the funny thing…I am horrible with all things technical. Can’t find the Finder button to save my life. My teenage daughter, Georgia is constantly helping me upload images, edit video, sign documents from my laptop…all that. I struggle with all six of my gadgets, daily, and easily get confused with all the options and buttons. It’s safe to say I’m unable to exist with my devices alone.  Thank goodness for my trusted tribe of loved ones who try hard not to roll their eyes when I ask for their assistance.  PapaBear says that I simply don’t apply myself, but the real story is – I’m not wired for this new way of living.

Here’s the irony….I am the Instagram, FB, YouTube, Twitter, Blog Queen. I capture everything and I mean EVERYTHING that’s going on in my life and share it through social networking platforms. I even produced a video series on beauty, Girl Crush, of which I helped to edit! I really enjoy the upside of technology, and the activity of capturing + sharing. Plus, I love how our gadgets keep my family linked while we roam and explore.  I’m in love with this mysterious and confusing beast – technology. She’s like my best friend. We travel side-by-side through life.

And somehow, in the midst of all this fumbling and stumbling with technology, Dell – the tech company, has chosen me to be amongst their #Inspire 100 list of Entrepreneurs, World Changers, Creatives and Taste Makers.  I like what they’re messaging – ‘No matter who you are – regardless of your make-up or your tribe – technology belongs to you. It lives for you.

I’m honored to be part of this impressive and diverse group. Check us out on their FB page!

“Technology inspires me to think bigg(er). It’s my adhesive, the ‘sticky’ that allows all the important parts of my life to co-exist. With technology, my family can stay productive, organized and connected, as we follow our passions – often from opposite corners of the world.”


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The Wooden Brush: Transformation Tuesday…beauty & such

Wooden Brush, by GEORGIA


I’ve done so many different things with my hair. Short and curly, asymetrical, long and pin straight, weaved, braided, the ponytail…..everything.  It’s safe to say, when my mood changes, you’ll see me with a different hairstyle.

I’m mercurial and my hair tells the story.

What’s important? Tools, product, creativity and an anything-goes-attitude.

I wish it were more simple. But…..one of the simplest treatments and products I’ve found is our wooden hairbrush.

It’s essential for gentle detangling + scalp stimulating. I like it when my hair is wet, because the flexible rubber pad allows the brush to adjust to the needs of each strand. And that equals less tangling and breakage.

So perfect. So simple. So inexpensive.

Grab one (here) for yourself, and enjoy!


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Invisible?…Never: MamaBear Monday @GeorgiaNY

Yeah, I said it…We’re all Black…


Here is a excerpt from one of my most interesting interviews.  It was done by Tanya Manderson.  She writes about women.  She had a few questions for me…

Your oldest daughter is bi-racial.  What do you plan on teaching her about race?

From day one, she used to ask me “Mom, why are you black and I’m not?” It’s about your cultural identity.  I told her that everyone is just a different shade of black, so for years, she thought her dad was a light skinned black guy. (laughs)  But the truth is, that we all came from Africa and we’re now different shades.  So my daughter is golden-black and I’m chocolate-black.  I took the emphasis off skin color and just told her that people come in different shades, but what you cling to in life, is what you do at home.  My philosophy is “you do as your mom does”.  We just live as black people do.

What is your biggest hope for your children?

That they are independent, happy and healthy.

What is your biggest fear for your children?

Probably one of the hardest things I’ve gone through is my father’s death. He died nine years ago.  After that, I was like “what’s the point of loving someone so much?”  You have to release them and you don’t want to.  So there’s this huge loss that you feel.  So loss is a fear for me.  How will my kids deal with loss.  So to combat that, I talk (with them) about the cycle of life a lot.  I’m all into my kids, I read to them, I sleep with them under my armpits.  So I hope when I’m not there, they will still feel me, feel my presence.

Are you political?

I vote.  I have a political opinion.  Many of the things that I embrace share the political space, like race, gender, business, healthcare; all things that help families survive are political discussions, so yes.  I’m political.

Healthcare affects me the most; my son just broke his leg. It’s just so hard to stay healthy in this country. Organic food costs a fortune. (laughs)  Also, education and the lack of help the government gives to small businesses.

How do you feel about America?

I choose to live here.  I’m not forced to be here.  I’d like to move to Ghana next, when my oldest daughter becomes a ripe teenager. (laughs) Here, you’re always faced with the question of what it means to be black.  It might be a romantic notion, but maybe, I hope, you’ll ask yourself that less when you’re surrounded by everyone that looks like you. Like when I was at Spelman, we still talked about race, but it came up less. There will be more room to talk about other things when your whole world is black.  Your vision is changed and you won’t notice all of the other subliminal bullshit that America feeds you.

Am I proud to be American?  It’s like a dichotomy.  There’s a lot of things I don’t like about America, about the way we behave and the message we give and the things we do.  But the things that we do to the rest of the world give this easier life that we live here.  I love my life here, I just hate how we came by it.  It’s a toss up.  I’m proud of my insular world, but the bigger world where I don’t have any say-so, like government decisions, not so much.  I wish I could give world leaders my two cents.

Are you represented in pop culture?

No.  When I open fashion magazines, I don’t relate anymore.  I could care less about fashion trends.  I like watching people on the street.  In media, I don’t see myself, the images seem really frivolous.  It’s not because I’ve matured, I don’t think they’ve matured.  They speak to the woman in her 20’s who can’t wait to spend her money.  I like buying clothes, but I also get excited about buying my new notebooks so I can fill them up with ideas. There doesn’t seem to be a vision of a full woman who is obsessed with not just clothes, but obsessed with travel, or is obsessed with her other friends and their lives.  The conversation in magazines is just too small for me.  I don’t look to media for cues on how black women are portrayed.  I just look for them to entertain me.  I don’t see myself on radio or on songs.  I have to talk to my daughter about hip hop lyrics.  She memorizes those songs and I want to see that she doesn’t incorporate it into her life.  She’ll ask me what a threesome is.  We talk about it and put into real context so it’s not glamorized.  I don’t want her to make decisions on what Nicki Minaj is saying.

Do you ever feel invisible?


Are you lonely?

No, not at all.  I’m surrounded by my family. I feel really able in the world, to do things that I love.

What do you want on your tombstone?

I want it to read that I was the most loving mother and wife and knockout beauty.  An awesome mom, the hottest girlfriend, and just a knockout.

(You can read more at…http://tellmewhoyouareblog.com/post/5462373904/jodie-patterson)


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Rita Nakouzi. Fancy Fridays: What Is Beauty?

Rita Nakouzi – Creative Director, 4.5 Productions

Rita Nakouzi

Occupation: Trend Forcaster, Concept Designer. Creative Director of 4.5 Productions

Passion: I love learning about new places, artists, tribes and uncovering the complex layers lying benieth the surface of things. That’s ultimately what informs my work but also teaches me a bit more about myself and those closest to me.

Daily Beauty Routine: My beauty routine is very simple.  I wash my face with a cleanser using a cloth and I moisturize with Oil of Olay. I also always add an SPF 50.  If I’ve worn make-up, then I add on a couple of steps including a make-up remover and a toner.

Hair Routine: I wash my hair with shampoo twice a week and wash with conditioner daily. I use Karastase-Bain Oleo. Then, I follow up with my biggest splurge – Shu Uemera’s Essence Absolue.

What Does Beauty Mean To Me: Beauty is a way of life. It’s about being content and accepting who you are.

Beauty Note: Your inner self is a reflection of your outer beauty. Be good and kind to your soul and it will manifest outwardly.

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WE DID IT! Barack Obama is our President.

Waiting on line for GAS & DEMOCRACY. Absolutely.


Yesterday I felt very connected to all the mamas in my family, especially the ones that are no longer alive.  Yesterday, like our mothers, grandmothers and great grandmothers, I did whatever it took to make things right and commit to what’s important.  I waited with patience and purpose for five hours to fill our family transport with gas. You might be like, “whatever, just work from your smart phone and keep it moving.” Sure, that’s what I did. But five hours on a line means no bathroom. Plus, no heat because I had to conserve gas while I waited.  Plus, frustrated women fighting over positions in the line, literally.  It was clear that we (mostly women) all had people waiting for us back home that needed us. We were women on the edge – all in need of gas.

It was a scene from Mad Max. Crazy. I normally fill up twice every week, and sometimes spend a bit more to have someone help me pump. I’ve never waited more than five minutes to access gas.  Never. Hurricane Sandy has left us without homes and loved ones and only now do each of us truly understand how convenient our lives have been.

Would voting prove more difficult than pumping? Once gas had been taken care of, I had to find a poll before it was too late. Within minutes, I saw the make shift signs directing me to “Vote Here”. I found parking easily, but couldn’t find the entrance. Signs had been blown around, and I was confused. From her third floor window, an older lady was directing me. She was tapping the glass and pointing with wild hands towards the entrance, around the corner.  Once I was on track, she gave me the thumbs-up and the universal sign of determination, the tightly clenched fist. I felt our collective effort.

“Obama & His People” drawing by Penelope, 5yrs old                                                                                            (The square on the bottom, far right, is Romney by himself)

Young mothers with babies, older people, poor people, crippled, gay, straight, Carribean and Jewish all waiting to vote. Once again, convenience was not even a consideration.  We all waited with patience and purpose for hours to re-ellect our President, Barack Obama. I was proud of myself and everyone around me.

“Obama in the White House” art by Cassius, 6yrs old

Once home, I did what my parents had done years before…PapaBear and I talked politics for hours over dinner and wine.  With our kids surrounding us and inserting their own, very clear opinions into the conversation, we huddled around the television, watching and waiting. My four babes, our future voters, grabbed blankets and snuggled up close, quite aware something big was happening.

THIS IS HOW IT WILL ALWAYS BE DONE. The election of our President, Barack Obama was a family-clan-crew-neighborhood-we-the-people type of movement.

“I want Barack Obama To Win Very Much” drawing by Penelope, 5 yrs old


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BEST HOLIDAY GIFTS – On Budget + With Purpose. Breakthrough Thursday: Small Business Crossroads

Family Portrait by Michael Mundy for An Afternoon With



There is always a trade-off, of course. But the goal is to make sure what you receive is irresistible.

For small business owners, the trade off for being independent, passionate and lifestyle-rich, is often being, well – shall I say it? Cash-poor (for at least some time, that is). Here’s how it works: What money we make often goes right back into the business. What money we manage to save, often gets hijacked and transferred right back into the business. And all moves we might desire to make as individuals are quickly regulated by what our businesses need. Running a close second to our human-children is the ‘other baby’ – our business.  That baby never stops needing, and thus, we’re no longer free to travel, shop and do as we used to – when we were young, wild and free.

This may all sounds like a drag, but to me it’s the trade off for a life of wonder, excitement and passion – (and quite possibly a nice check down the road). I love my mercurial life as an entrepreneur, regardless of the trade-off!

And then, come the holidays…

This is exactly when my dedication to the entrepreneurial-lifestyle is challenged. I think: Who is this all for if I can’t give my kids everything they deserve? (Notice the word ‘deserve’) Am I being totally selfish by insisting on my dreams at all cost? Does it even make a difference if I work a 9-to-5 or run my own company – in the big scheme of things? Questions upon questions…

Ummmmm…Absolutely.  It all matters.  I’m fulfilled by the people around me, by what I do with my time (to the nano second) and by what I give to the world. Every bit of our murcurial lives matter and add up to greatness. To quote myself: Our marriages can be healthy, while our small business grow, while our children thrive, while we  follow our dreams.

For this holiday season, I’m staying on trend – with myself.  What that means is Papa Bear and I will be buying gifts for our family (nuclear + extended) that not only keep us on budget but also speak to what’s important in our lives: travel, health, beauty, culture and music.

My goal this year is to not spend too much yet feel like we’ve received the most. And perhaps along the way, the kids will understand and appreciate all that we have and what it took to get those things.

I’ve already started making my list…


*Sponsoring A Family

We’re gifting one needing family with our gently used books, toys, coats, clothing, and of course a COMPUTER for the holidays.  I’m leaning towards the Dell Inspiron 14z because it’s a great laptop for an entire brood, like ours (we have one and LOVE it!).  It’s not too fragile for little hands but it’s totally beautiful, sleek and lightweight. We’ll deliver it fully-loaded, of course, and my Teen will do the honors of uploading it with a great eclectic mix of music and movies for their family.

For my family, technology has always allowed us to #DoMore. We ‘travel’ the world from our living room, ace homework assignments with ease, enjoy movies and music on a budget and explore every idea we’ve ever had. Woah! We’re a gadget-obsessed family and excited to share our tech-wealth with a ‘newbie’ family!

This is the gift that’s so easy, regardless of your budget and will give both you and the receiver a deep sense of gratitude. You can do this through local churches.

*World Map Wall Paper $150.00

Oversized and gorgeous, this world map decorates and inspires. Inquisitive minds will be encouraged to follow their whims and ultimately experience a life of travel, culture and exploration!

*Moleskin Journals $6-$19

Multi colored & multi-sized for note taking, free styling and day dreaming. Gift a bundle of three and watch the creativity flow!

*Family Portraits under $50

Family vs Sandy – PA, 2012

Collect your best shots of family and friends over this past year and beautifully bind them in a gorgeous hard cover book format. This keepsake can be done effortlessly through iPhoto. Give them annually for an awesome library of your life. Wow!

*Personalized Fairy Tales $32

Who better to star in a great superhero story than your own child!  Tales about your kids with their names and skin tones cutomized into each book is priceless. My parents gifted these to me when I was six, and it became my favorite pastime to read stories about myself! I think they make great gifts for the mature audience as well!

*Gold – Luxury Skin Cream $21

Beauty is perhaps the most adored gift. And whenever I’ve gifted GOLD to my friends, they’ve thanked me! I made this natural moisturizer to be used all over the body. It helps smooth and soften dry skin, prevent stretch marks, sun damage, and face wrinkles. It’s my magic – perfect for the most sensitive skin type, both old & young. Awesomeness in a jar.

No Need to wrap this beauty!

Tip: This cream is kind of genius. I use the Citrus on my son and it helps with his eczema. My friends use it on their faces while skiing to prevent wind burn.  A couple of dabs on kinky hair and it’s the perfct leave-in. I use it all over just a few minutes before getting dressed in the morning. This is absolutely what’s ‘in my bag’. (FYI, I’m obsessed with the Geranium Rose.)


I’m all about spreading and receiving love + ideas in multiple forms. The computer, the books, the body cream…all that! Gentle sparks to help ignite your passion.

#StirItUp for the holidays.





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My Love: Whatever Wednesday…Random Jodie Moments

Just The Two of Us….and a few pip-squeaks tagging along


If it weren’t for him I’d be someone very different than who I am today. Probably very happy and loving, because that’s my nature – but so very different.

He’s got me. We roll together. I have no fear. He loves his mama. He loves my kids (sure they’re his kids too, but I’m just saying). He indulges me. He wouldn’t allow me to face-mush him. He’s decided to go organic. He uses Dude Oil. He lets me dress him. He’s smart AND funny. He believes in my dreams. He helps me with my to-do lists. We get it done together.


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Eyelashes. The BIG Easy: Transformation Tuesdays…beauty and such

Eyes. Lashes. Arms. Go!


Simple, powerful ways to look and feel beautiful are the sweet spot in beauty maintenance. I always go for techniques that simplify my boudoir time (I’m generally about 15 minutes max) and simultaneously make me feel like a gem.  There are a few beauty secrets that I love which keep me happy and always rouse the crowd (PapaBear included).

Eyelashes are on the top of my list.  They’re game changers. Truth be told, I can’t keep a tube of mascara to save my life.  Missing, dried up, whatever…it’s rarely a part of my routine – to my disservice.

BUT, individually applied lashes are a godsend. They take tired eyes and make them your centerpiece.

Pre-lashes & “tired”


Bling Lash. 108 w 14th street. Ask for Jenny.

LASHES. The Big Easy.


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How Much Is Enough? MamaBear Mondays. This Woman’s Work (for mothers & mothers-to-be)

As parents, we never stop


What is enough? What is sufficient?

I’ve been asking myself this a lot recently. As a mom there is always more to do and more to give – but recently it feels like there might be less to spread around. I mean really, how many ways can the pie be sliced? How much magic can one woman make? With all that we parents have on our plates and all the individual needs of our kids, I’m constantly looking for effective ways to give them the most spiritually, academically, socially.

My friend Lauri wrote: “If we love (our kids) beyond comprehension, feed and shelter and clothe them, give them a fine and thoughtful education, provide them with a connection to their past by creating opportunities to spend time with their (families) and give them a loving community of friends and peers to support them daily –  can we stop there?”

No. Of course not. There is no stopping, as a parent. It’s a continuous, joyous up hill ballet (as I like to call it).  But exactly how we continue on doing and giving more today than we did yesterday – I haven’t the answer. I don’t know exactly how we do it, but somehow it’s done. Parents live for their kids and become successful and accomplished for them as well. Because, let’s face it, if it weren’t for the motivation of our mini-me’s, many of us would be chilling on a most remote island working out some awesome yoga position.  For real, the simple life is a compelling option as we get older – if it weren’t for our children.

Get quiet. Go deep. Ask for help.

I do know that recently, I’ve been moved to pray. Like –  closing my eyes and going internal, deep into that place where I ask for help. I’ve been talking mostly with my dad, as I’m sure we’re forever connected. And also with Spirit, because, well, why not check in at the highest level?

Prayer is new for me. First I unload all my worries and questions and then I ask for guidance – for a clear path to what’s best for my family. I ask for the things I want and for whatever is good that I may not be able to identify. I also express gratitude. It’s my chance to say thank you for everything wonderful in my life.

And yes, I do realize it’s opportunistic to pray when in need. But…I’m in urgent need of some back up over here. These days, I’m thankful for help to move my team towards the goals I’ve set.  I believe it’s true that ‘you can have whatever you receive’. So with that in mind, I’m doing my best to have the ultimate game plan.

1/ Identify what it is exactly that I want (take time to look around and absorb life – ideas will come)

2/ Ask for what I want (in quiet prayer and out loud to those around you)

3/ Get in position to receive what it is I want (no sleeping in all day, no funky moods all day, no waisted energy on superficial nonsense…)

Prayer is new to me, and it’s something I enjoy. If for no other more simple reason than to hear my small voice connected to the limitless universe.




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Amy Swift. Fancy Fridays: What Is Beauty?

Amy Swift – Founder, SMARTY

Amy Swift

Occupation: I’m a marketing strategist and founder of SMARTY, a community for entrepreneurial women. We produce tons of event for women in business in southern California and are now launching in Boston.

Passion: My passions range from health & wellness to raw food to empire building! I do love business – I could talk shop for hours.

Daily Beauty Routine: This could get long…I use baking soda to rinse my mouth and gums daily. I use a light facial oil–there are lots of great brands but I go back to Josie Maran Argan Oil. I exfoliate everyday, skin brush, use almond oil on my body, take Epsom salt baths and try do an infrared sauna every day.  I also do raw veggie juices in the morning and try to eat a plant based diet.

Hair Routine: Ok, this is short. I wash twice a week with Purology – plus a condition. Sometimes I’ll do an apple cider vinegar rinse. Love the Purology products–everything I’ve ever tried has been amazing. I rarely brush my hair.

What does beauty mean to me: Beaty is mindfulness. Stillness. Presence. Being there.

Beauty Note: Try to love what you have – your skin, your thighs, your eye brows, your hair.  The more you resist loving those things about yourself, the more they persist, and you’ll spend all your time trying to make them better or change them – and the change will only be incremental. Yes, have your brows done. But don’t wish for Elizabeth Taylor brows if you look like Gwyneth Paltrow.  If you embrace the things that you find imperfect about yourself- they usually become much more beautiful. I used to wish I was mixed – so as long as I wished that, I would always be unhappy with my white skin. Then, I started loving my skin. That’s when things got interesting!  Instead of not having enough, it started to feel like I had everything.

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The Mechanics of a Start-Up: Breakthrough Thursdays (small business crossroads)

Toolkit for Success


Passion is usually the impetus to every small business concept. When we find ourselves at a critical point in our lives, we re-examine everything that means anything to us.  Personal crossroads lead us to entrepreneurial ideas – simply because at these moments we are swirling with emotion – and emotion triggers creativity. But this is not enough.

HERE IS HOW YOU’LL WIN. On day one, start to address the mechanics of your businessthis will be the game changer for you. In the early stages of inception we need to think about the legal, and business end.  In order for our ideas to come to fruition and then to stay alive and thrive, we have to think beyond the idea and get focused on the structure…taxes, licenses, type of entity, etc, etc.

Sue Monderson – Accountant + Small Business Advisor

Sue Monderson, is my small-business advisor & accountant.  With years of personal experience as an entrepreneur, plus a strong career as an accountant, she can help build and even revive your business. Skilled at start-ups and financial crisis management, Sue understands the challenges of running a small business and can help you avoid many of the potholes that are so easy to stumble into. (FYI, her rates great!)

Sue’s 5 Tips for Small Business Start-Up:

Business Plan – Time consuming to write, but essential for fundraising and clarity. It will help to understand how viable your idea/business actually is, what the business provides and how much cash you’ll need. Key sections of a business plan can be completed in short form to assess if further research is needed to proceed with this idea. Jodie’s Tip: Remember, this is your brilliant idea, there is no need to hire anyone to write this for you. Take it one section at a time. You may however need help articulating the financial projections. (SCORE is a good resource to help you outline the plan.)

Financial Plan -It’s critical to know how much money your business will need annually to operate.  A budget is one of the key pieces to help plan for and operate your business. This will help estimate your initial financial income statements and keep you on track for future comparisons. Jodie’s Tip: Don’t allow your discomfort with numbers to get the best of you. Call in the troops for this. Ask for help. Remember to account for everything…and then assume even more.

Arranging – Most entrepreneurs assume that becoming an LLC is
the right choice.  This isn’t always correct.  In fact, for many this assumption is the beginning of the tax pitfall. Understanding your business, who will be involved, what
services/products will be offered and how you expect to obtain capital
for expansion determines what’s best for you. Jodie’s Tip: This is when you want to call a sit down meeting with your accountant / advisor. The options should be well thought out, as it’s not as black & white as it appears.

Execution – Registering your business with the state, securing Tax ID number, registration filings, and licenses can be a simple process done by yourself online. The state now has allowed for everything to be done all at once and some registrations are even free. Although it might be faster to hire a company to do this, it can be problematic if you don’t have a general understanding
of your needs. Companies for hire aren’t accountable for incorrect
filings – and the fees to make changes can be costly. Jodie’s Tip: Take your time on this, once done correctly, your (business) life will run smoothly.

Bookkeeping – Determine an immediate plan to track income, expenses
and loans, before investors are involved. This will ensure accountability to yourself and the business. Address equity shares, working capital and loans.  Investing in a good accounting program can assist to streamline this
process. Jodie’s Tip: Buy QuickBooks and upload it immediately. Starting your business with a clean and clear slate will help you raise more capital as well as spend it more wisely.

Sue is helping me climb my way out of some of the craziness I stumbled into.

Learn more for your own business by attending Sue’s first Business Toolkit Series! Stay tuned for dates & location. I’m hosting!

Sue Monderson

Accountant / Small Business Advisor





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Art by Ellie Pyle. Whatever Wednesdays: Random Jodie Moments

Thank You: Ellie Pyle painting (btw, gratitude is everything)


Ellie Pyle is an artist I adore.

Pink Radio: Ellie Pyle painting

Pyle has developed a strong downtown collectorship for her vibrant, iconic paintings that frequently tout excessively available imagry culled from the most obvious sources.

Despite her works’ elusive simplicity, her surfaces are eloquent, according to critic Geoff Young, “her distribution of information substantial and her touch throughly felt.”

Racing Heart: Ellie Pyle painting

Ellie and I met years ago in Soho over a mutual love of beauty. Several of her pieces can be seen at Norwood on 14th street in NYC (or at my house in Crown Heights, BK).




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What Is Beauty?: Transformation Tuesdays…beauty and such

Faye Dunaway

Beauty is an Activity. It’s really not about the application of make up and the style of our hair. It’s about connecting your inner feelings and your outer world.  Once we can tap into a mood and express that mood through our hair, clothing, homes even the product that we put on our bodies, we then become undeniably beautiful.  It is all about the connection of the inner and outer woman that translates into soul stirring beauty.

Think about Lauren Hutton, Zoe Kravitz, Faye Dunaway, Bethann Hardison, Adell – these women have nailed it!

Bethann Hardison

Beauty is an Activity.



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The Elements of Being Whole. MamaBear Mondays: This Woman’s Work (for mothers and mothers-to-be)


Me and my clique, clique, clique


Someone asked me the other day: How do you balance it all – work life with home life?

Here’s the short answer: There is no balance. I’m not balanced. All of my girlfriends are not balanced. I’m not even sure if balance is the goal.

The better goal is to be a whole woman. It’s an ongoing process.

What I’ve figured out is that I’m ok with my crazy life, simply because I make sure to do  everything I love – every single week.  Here’s how I do it: First, I identify all of my “musts” – all the things that I must do to make myself happy.  Then, I touch them – every week. For me it’s all about: family, travel, business, health, random thoughts & beauty. These are my defining elements that make me whole.

Touch what you love each week – family, work, health, travel, beauty…

Every week I make sure I touch all six elements – multiple times throughout the week. Some weeks I do more ‘mommying’ because the kids need me – for school projects, tests, nightmares and such.  On these days, I’m cursing under my breath as my work-obligations get put on hold.  Other weeks, I’m submersed in work deadlines trying to complete web site changes for the team in India and packaging design work for Brad on the upper east side.  Those weeks, I’ve been known to turn in a school project a day late. That, no doubt, is the worst feeling of all.

A trip to PS1 w/ my crew (family+travel+beauty) all in one day!

Alas, gratification always comes. In fact it comes to me every week. No matter what direction the week leans, and how unbalanced it feels, I will always make sure I do it all – more or less.  My six elements mean the most to me. So I show them respect.

3 generations

I own my crazy life.  All of it.



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Denise De Pass. Fancy Fridays: What Is Beauty?

Denise De Pass, Actor


Denise De Pass

Occupation: Actor

Passion: My own self expression & making a difference in other people’s lives.

Daily Beauty Routine: My face requires extra attention. First, I use A cleanser from Basis that I like. Next, I use Tend Skin as a toner for any break outs. And then I finish with Bliss’s Fabulous Face lotion SPF15.  I’m always looking for the next best thing to keep my skin clear.

Hair Routine: I wear my hair both curly & straight, depending on my mood.  When it’s curly, I use Heaven-n-Hair by Deva Curl, and then alternate with Moroccan Oil- Intense Hydrating Mask.  As a curly girl, I don’t ‘shampoo’, instead I use conditioner as a cleanser. After washing, I leave in the conditioner, comb it in to a style and then diffuse to dry. Out the door! For a straight look, I do a bit more.  I start with Deva Curl’s No-Poo Cleanser to remove build up. Then I condition with Intense Hydrating Mask or Heaven-in-Hair by Deva Curl and mix in a few drops of Moroccan OilTreatment. Rinse. Blow Dry. Flat Iron with either FHI or ENZO tools.

What does beauty mean to me: Beauty means so much….. But to sum it up: Beauty is a woman’s integrity – it’s how she is with herself, her loved ones and the planet around her.  A woman is beautiful when she looks for the balance of life and works hard for things both for herself and for those around her. We then pass those ‘gems’ on to as many people as possible.

Beauty Note: Always match the outside world to your ‘inside world’ through meditation.

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New Packaging: Breakthrough Thursdays (small business crossroads)

GEORGIA by Jodie Patterson (sneak peek)


Things change. People evolve….and of course our brands follow the lead of our lifestyles.

We’ve been very busy. Traveling to foreign countries as well as local hideaways, soaking up time with our families, looking deep with in ourselves for answers – growing, always growing.  As Oprah said, “The whole point of being alive is to evolve into the complete person you were intended to be.”

Peep the Peacock!

I want my story to resonate throughout everything I do.  Our product means a lot to me. We made it for our families and friends. And now it’s evolved into what you see here.  Old World Charm + Modern Strength. #VintageCool.

My story is one of family, health, travel, heritage, passion and beauty. What’s yours?


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Are We Nature Deficient? Whatever Wednesdays…Random Jodie Moments

What we see is what we become

“There was a child went forth every day, And the first object he look’d upon, that object he became, and that object became part of him for the day or a certain part of the day, Or for many years or stretching cycles of years. The early lilacs become part of this child, And grass and white and red morning glories…” -Walt Whitman


As it appears, we are heading into a culture ‘which is exclusively an interaction of man on man’.  Or worse, man on machine.  This is not what we want for ourselves or for our children.

What we see and touch each day is what we become. Should we take the grace of the trees, the flexibility of the water, the passion of the animals? Or should we liken ourselves to the non-living?

Let’s get out of both house and office and touch nature. Go to it. Roll in it. Become it.

A great book to read for more on this topic: Last Child in the Woods, by Richard Louv.



Find your place in nature

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My Trilogy for Internal Bliss: Supplements! Transformation Tuesdays…beauty and such

The Trilogy


If we want to be breathtakingly beautiful, we have to address what we’re putting into our bodies – not just on. Lotions are potions are some of my favorite adornments, yet our bodies need internal care as well.

I’ve been taking three supplements these days that I really like:

BIOTIN: My hair stylist has been recommending it for years. Just over 6 months ago I started taking it regularly.  Love it.  I naturally have thin hair, and after each of my four babes, my hair fell out in what seemed like handfuls. It became really thin and fragile. Now, it’s a bit more full, super soft & shiny and I’m not noticing any hair loss!!  I’ll keep you posted in the changes as I notice them. So far so good! 10,000 mcg per day

KRILL OIL: This crustacean offer a way more potent dose of Omega 3’s and antioxidants than do fish! Some of the benefits are: a healthy heart, diminished signs of aging, a healthy liver, increased concentration & learning – all super sexy benefits. 2x per day

CLEANSE MORE: It’s always a good idea to do a deep internal cleanse.  If we were to hold a mirror up to our intestines, we might not feel so beautiful.  For most people, there is nasty stuff on the walls of our colon that we want nothing to do with.  Get rid of it naturally, and your skin, eyes and physical shape will look so much better!  I get my glow on, naturally! 1x at night

This is what I take.  It works for me. Listen to your body, read some articles on healthy approaches (the Mercola site is my go-to!), and make sure what you choose is all natural.


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The 4-Day Work Week. MamaBear Mondays: This Woman’s Work (for mothers & mothers-to-be)

Business + Love + Beauty

The 1-4-2-Step


Let’s re-think how we spend our time.  Five days for work and then two days for frantically doing errands?? I’m just not buying it.

Here’s how I’ve mixed it up…One day for ‘set-up’. Four days for ‘hustle’. Tow days for ‘off-grid’.

KEY: Use Monday as your precursor and the other six days will follow the lead. Most people, when Monday arrives, are fully stressed out.  It’s only day one, yet people have thrown in the towel. The problem: expectations are way to high on Mondays.  Confusion sets in which leads to combustion.

For me, Monday isn’t actually part of the work week. I treat it as preliminary to the actual week.  I use it to set up and prepare for the real work that’s expected of me during what I call “The Real Week”.  If Monday is done right, I have a high impact 4-day work week! I go in. I get busy. I break out.

PapaBear thinks this is all very decadent – that I assume the luxury of shortening each week to a mere 4 days.

Actually, my 4-day work week comes from the kind of ingenuity moms should pride themselves on.  The way I see it, the more prepared and organized we are, the less we actually have to do. Plus, if we recharge ourselves and the family, the better we actually do things. Or something like that.

Every Monday I focus on the following:

1/GROCERIES at Trader Joe’s. You can’t be productive if you’re hungry or  lolligaging in restaurants all day.

2/S&Ps (school projects & social plans) + WALL CALENDARS for each month. See it. Know it. Do it.

3/ BILLS. Paying them…because, when you don’t, trouble is right around the corner. If I can’t pay in whole, I work out a payment plan. Don’t let bills chase you into hiding. Confront them with a smile.

4/ HOME ORGANIZATION. I spend a solid hour on upcoming moves, repairs, seasonal transitions, travel, dead lightbulbs, dry-cleaning, etc. This stuff never ends, so you might as well carve out the time…or get used to your house being ‘janky’.

5/ FORMS i.e. doctors, school-trips, insurance papers – all that tedious stuff must move off my desk.

6/ TEAM MORAL. I always make an assessment as to who’s up and who’s down. Then I determine what each team player needs.  It’s my job to keep the equilibrium for family & co-workers alike. Balance = harmony = forward.

7/ MEETINGS. I try to schedule face-to-face meetings with as many people as possible each week – both formal or informal . I’m a small business owner. We’re salesmen. We need to stay connected.

and last but not least….

8/RE-UPING myself (primarily nails & hair. I rarely shop for myself…but when I do I save it for a Monday). It’s very simple, inner AND outer beauty is key to a glorious life. Plus, I’m always ready to rock-n-roll!

The notion of a shortened work week may sound strange to some. But it’s important that we, moms, think strategically about our time. We’re being pulled (or even pushed by ourselves) in every possible direction. Yes, we love the thrill of working on our passions around the clock, being in love, and being beautiful. This in fact is THE modern trilogy – and we’re the first generation where so many of us have it. We’re no longer simply the doting house-wife, or the vapid model, or the ball-busting business woman. Our marriages can be healthy, while our small business grow, while our children thrive, while we  follow our dreams.

This life of Business + Love + Beauty is here for us, but only once we begin to move in unusual ways. I call it the 1-4-2-Step.



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Faith is Karma is Faith: when life hits you like a speeding car *SPECIAL POST*

Faith is Karma. Karma is Faith.

Me, Johnica & Sue on the MIT campus (holding My Everything) Pre-Crash


I haven’t delivered a single new post to you this week since Monday. And there’s good reason for that… But more importantly, this will be the only new post I’ll write for the next few days. It’s that good.

There inevitably comes a time in every woman’s life when major shifts occur and the truth hits you like a brick wall.  It’s never anything you can plan for or embrace gradually – it’s more like a speeding car crash. And right after the crash, when you’re walking through the smoke to the other side – you realize life will never be the same.

I’m now on the other side.

A few days ago, I traveled to Boston to participate in a think tank on Technology + Teens + Education. This was to be a breakthrough trip for me as I don’t normally roll with such a geeked-up, teched-down posse.  I was by far the intellectual ‘baby of the bunch’, and the least versed in the field.  But as you might know by now, Dell has asked me to be part of their awesome group of mom/teen Ambassadors, the DellDozen. So I rolled to MIT and got my feet wet.

On my way back to the airport, I was in a car accident.

If anyone has ever been in a car accident (this will be my second), they’ll understand what I’m about to say next.  Right after impact, your brain functions erratically. I curse. I cry. I try and run far, far away. I tweet. It all makes no sense, but this is what I did. Then I grabbed a few things and fled the scene of the crime – dazed and confused.  Luckily, the car behind us was also a taxi, so I jumped in and we sped off. About 10 minutes later, I realized I had left my computer and my prized possession, an embossed black leather attache case from my dad, in the taxi – which was now nowhere to be found.

This is when I first feel the pain of the accident. I want to throw up.

We speed back to the scene of the crime (45 minutes post accident) to find the very police officer who had handled the accident still lingering.  For a brief moment I feel optimistic.  The problem is, Mr. Officer is a complete bumbling idiot and his police report is even less helpful. Bogus car company. No phone number. No car number. No medallion number. Blah, blah, blah.

I’m so beside myself with grief.  The gorgeous new computer…ok, they do cost a small fortune. But post accident, material things do loose their value in a flash. It was the leather case from my father, John Patterson, that I was sobbing over. The one he had carried with him while stomping all over both Wall Street & the South Bronx during the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. Of the few things that I’ve kept of his, this one was extremely important. It represented dreaming, fearlessness and trailblazing.

Had I lost it? Had I dropped the baton?

This is when I go on instinct. I literally walked the streets retracing steps, and looking for a brown-skinned taxi cab driver named Perkins. I did some of the obvious things like call the police station, and all the car companies, but all lead to dead ends.

An hour and a half later, I was forced to head back to the airport for fear of missing the last flight out of town. There were three taxis in front of me. The first one was way too aggressive. The second one was way too messy. The third one seemed just right. So I crawled in the last, feeling and looking miserable.

This is when I’m in safe hands and things start to turn around. My cabby, Amhir, the most compassionate person, drove me around and around and around. Pulling over whenever he saw a fellow cabby-friend. He told them each my story and asked if they knew Perkins, the brown-skinned driver. I couldn’t tell exactly what was being said (unfortunately, I don’t understand Arabic) but from the hand movements I believed each was sending us in a different direction. Total frustration.

I ask Amhir if he would bring me to an ATM and then to the airport. He agreed, but first he wanted to make one last call to his friend Vinnie Z, “the guy who knows everything about every cab in Boston”.

We call Vinnie Z. and tell him my story. Vinnie believes he knows Perkins. We’re told to wait on the corner near Kendall and Main. So we wait as it gets dark. A cab pulls up behind us. It’s Perkins. He has My Everything.

This is me walking through the smoke to the other side.

I collect My Everything, and then I sit back in the car with Ahmir for another hour talking. He tells me about Belief and Faith. He tells me that Karma is Faith and Faith is Karma.  I don’t fully understand, but I am open. More so than ever before. We determine that Faith is an activity. Through rituals, done daily, we do things that put God in front of our eyes. We do this so we can believe. Faith is an activity. Faith is only what you yourself do to believe.

I always thought faith was linked to the unknown, like when you don’t know, but you simply decide to believe. However, now I see it differently. Faith is linked to those moments when we know God exists.

I’m not saying that God returned My Everything. I’m saying that all that craziness, the accident, the crying, the loss, the frantic searching, all happened just so that I would stop and talk with Ahmir. That accident was my Karma. Karma: The concept of “action” or “deed” – that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect.

I needed to be reminded of the importance of ritual. I needed something so humbling to happen for it to shake me up and force me to listen. I needed to have it all hit me like a speeding car crash.

And so it did.



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Back to Work. Back to School. (Get Organized. Get Inspired. #DoMore): MamaBear Mondays


Having all the right accoutrements for whatever you do, is half the battle. The Teen and I break it down. From Moleskine to Inspiron, we like for our tools to make us smile! Watch us in classic mother-daughter action.


Check out my Pinterest boards for even more amazingness. My Picks. The Teen’s Picks.


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Charcy Evers: Fancy Fridays. women + beauty

Charcy + Daughter are always well groomed

Name:   Charcy Evers

Occupation:  Trend/Design Consultant. Hands-On Mom. I worked for over 10 years in the fashion industry most recently with Peclers Paris. I now run my own consulting firm.

Passion: I have many.  1/Raising my two children to be loving, compassionate and good citizens of the world.  2/My own personal evolution on this journey called life.  3/Expressing my creativity.  4/Finding the beauty and meaning in all aspects of life, no matter how big or small.   And of course, CLOTHES and SHOES.

Daily Beauty Routine: I was fortunate to have a sister instill in me the importance of a beauty regimen at a very young age (even before I knew what a wrinkle was!).  In that way, beauty and taking care of myself became an integral part of my life. Now that I’m in my 40’s, I don’t need ‘damage control’!

I never go to bed without washing, toning and applying my eye, neck and face creams.  I’m always in a rush in the morning so I’ve simplified my routine: A quick Murad face rinse, my Oil of Olay anti-aging roller eye cream to de-puff, La Prarie spf face cream, and my Clarins natural lip perfector.  Nothing beats a glossy lip when there’s no time for make -up.  And I cannot live without Rosebud Salve, day or night!

Hair Routine: I’m very low maintenance when it comes to hair.  Because I wash my hair infrequently, all of the natural oils really nourish and condition it.  So when I do wash, it’s super shiny and healthy.   In my opinion, no outfit is complete without well-groomed hair. It can enhance or detract from your over-all style. For me, salon blow-outs are a must.  (I have a ton of hair and can never get it perfect on my own).

What does beauty mean to me:  I’ve adopted my 6-year old daughter’s definition: “It’s when your heart smiles.”  Because really, what does all of this external stuff matter if your not connected to your source, your spirit.  That is where true beauty and meaning reside.

Beauty note: One of my favorite quotes is from one of my favorite design gurus, architect Mies van der Rohe: ” God is in the details”.  It kind of defines my entire ideology and  is aligned with my overall design/fashion/beauty mantra of “less is more”.    And like the ladies at Georgia preach, ” beauty IS simple”.  I know this to be true because within this simplicity, is where you find the depth and oftentimes, the most beauty.  

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