It’s been quite a while since my last post. I’d like to say something profound and apologize, but I’m just going to be honest here. I didn’t feel like doing my nails, and when I did feel like doing them, I didn’t feel like writing. And you know what? I’m not sorry.
A friend of mine shared a meme recently that said “diamonds are formed under pressure, but bread dough needs to rest to rise”. I am dough. Consider me the softest, squishiest, doughiest ball of dough there ever was, because when the going gets tough, I go into hibernation. It’s pretty comical, because this also happens on a one on one level for me. When I get really angry and the endorphins start to flow, I struggle to keep my eyes open. Imagine getting in a fight with someone and pausing to ask them if they need a nap. On the flip side, I have learned some pretty unhealthy coping techniques such as making everything a joke, so I laugh instead of fall asleep. I don’t get red-hot angry very often.
So anyway, there I was, rising on the couch in my most prolific fetal position when I heard my youngest say “mama, I got him’s peepee!” [Selective mom hearing activated] Mmmhmmm that’s nice sweetheart.
Did she just say she has someone’s peepee? I turned and eyes snapped open to find a look on the dog’s eyes that I’ve only ever seen once before, with his first surprise rectal temp. His poor dangler was trapped in a vice grip, and his eyes pleaded with me to make this end before it was too late and he would be forced to squat to pee the rest of his life. The poor guy was too shocked to make a sound. This is how I’m convinced we have the kindest dog in the world, because E makes me want to bite her myself sometimes, and he has never snapped at her no matter how many times she pulls his ears and tries to stick her finger up his butt.
This story has nothing to do with anything, but you are welcome.
So lately, instead of having fire 🔥 nails every week, I’ve been letting them hang on and grow out for a few weeks at a time. I’m learning to paint. I’m knitting sweaters in 100 degree heat. I finished the crafting area upstairs. I’m also on day 45 of yoga (Yoga with Adriene), and I’m overall treating myself gently. Every so often, I get spurts of creativity that ends up on my nails, like winding glitter that dances from finger to finger. I might even get a little adventurous and decide I want to try different techniques (hand placed vs dipped). And if that doesn’t happen? I am unapologetic. There’s always something new on Hulu to occupy your time, I’m sure. Speaking of which, has anyone watched Vikings? Holy cow that show is taking me for a wild ride. Highly recommend. Also, Mixed-ish is the show that very accurately depicts my childhood. I thought I would be laughing through the whole thing, but I found myself nodding in agreement instead. So if you miss me, just…watch that show instead.
Is there anyone out there that’s looking to delve into the world of watercolor, but always wondering where to begin, or thinking it’s too difficult? If so, do yourself a favor and get a few of the kits from Let’s Make Art! Or be like me and dive in with the monthly subscription box. It’s $35 (don’t quote me), and comes with the paints, paper, instruction sheets, mock picture, any outlines and the video tutorial. The videos are actually available for free on YouTube, so even if you are a current watercolorist (is that a word?), and have your own materials, you can join in for some mindless dough rising. I’ve been painting for less than a month, and I can already see a ton of improvement, AND I have a ton of artwork that I can use to decorate. Nothing says homey and mental health positive like bright florals on the walls! I can’t vouch for it yet, but there’s also a free watercolor basics class at The Happy Ever Crafter, and it started on the 25th. You can find all the supplies needed on Amazon.
Back to nails. My nail buddy Sim of @Nailedit_xb had this awesome triangle detail on her nails the other day, and I couldn’t stop staring! She gave a quick and easy to follow run-down and I was sold. After getting these gorgeous dips from the recent Zooty release, I ventured down the road of using tape for nail designs. Would you know, it’s hella easy?! You know what isn’t easy? Doing your nails after a hiatus and trying to get the steps right when you used gel instead of regular dip liquids. After swatching this collection, I noticed that the shimmers in the dip dulled the second activator touched them. I didn’t feel like swatching again with clear or a layer of base on top to see if it protected without dulling the shine, so I just opted for gel instead. I used cheater eater, herkie hellion and clean justice for this mani.
I forgot to do apex layers.
I only did two layers of super thin gel and dip, after my base and before my top coat.
Scratching an itch is very satisfying, but I’m afraid for my nail integrity. I mean, only slightly because I’ve been digging short nails for their functionality lately anyway, so it’s whatever. I really really really don’t want to experience a backwards bent nail, though. Prayers welcome.
I did the triangle detail a little different than the instructions, only because I used gel. I put down two layers of top coat/dip sprinkle/cure, brushing well between layers. After the second cure, I used washi tape in a crossed pattern, leaving an open triangle at the cuticle. I pressed down well, focusing on the line at the edge, then painted the inside of the triangle with a thin layer of base. I sprinkled on color, blew off the excess, used an orange stick (pointy end) to crisp up the edges, and in an even motion I removed the tape that was on top and then the tape that was on bottom, and cured. After this, I did two layers of gel top coat per usual.
For dip liquids, Sim gave me the following instructions, as I remember them with my faulty memory: Apply two layers of color, activate and buff. Apply scotch tape on the nail, leaving a triangle opening. Apply base in the triangle, dip and [not sure if this was in the instructions] tap down. Remove tape [I would still quickly crisp up the lines with an orange stick] and top coat as usual.
You might need a layer of clear over top if it’s thick or very textured. Feel it out, be one with the dip. OHMMMMM. Ok, this might be a little of the yogi in me infusing into the other facets of my life. I can do crow and headstand now! I mean, 1/2 the time at least. But I digress. The whole point of this post was supposed to be- don’t feel bad for needing to shift your focus or move inward. I’m not apologizing, and you shouldn’t need to apologize for being what you need to be either. You might be a diamond, or you might be a squishy ball of pizza dough. Do you, boo.
P.S. I’ve also been cooking a ton. If you love food or struggle with figuring out dinner every night, join wtf is for dinner on Facebook. I get hungry just scrolling all these beautiful pictures of food I need RIGHT NOW. Here’s some of the meals I’ve shared. I’d say a few, but I couldn’t narrow down the deliciousness 🤤