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Dresses in a Business Meeting...Yay or Nay?

Let me set the scene...I'm sitting at a table during a holiday lunch party with several women, one man. As we were waiting for the main course to arrive, we began speaking about dresses in business meetings. Specifically, one of my female colleagues questioned whether it is appropriate for women to wear dresses to business meetings. Without question, business suits are always the safe "go-to" apparel when heading to a business meeting, but what happens when you want to try something new? Or something not so conventional? Are dresses and option? Well, of course I had an opinion! 

I personally think that certain dresses are fine in business meetings...I also think that there are some dresses that are inappropriate. I am a big fan of well-tailored sheath dresses. I think these dresses pack a double punch for professional women in that they ooze femininity and class at the same time. If done properly, I believe that a sheath dress can totally hold its own in a business meeting full of suits. The perfect sheath is well-tailored, not too tight, and not too short. And while we did not discuss colors and patterns, I think that the more business meeting-appropriate dresses are solid, and not too bright-colored. Here are a few examples:

During our discussion, everyone at the table agreed that traditional wrap dresses are not appropriate at business meetings. While no one could articulate why these dresses have no place in a business meeting, I reckon it has something to do with visible curvature...let me explain. While I do believe that wrap dresses are great to wear in the office and that every Professional Diva should have a few sprinkled throughout her wardrobe, I do think they may be a distraction in a business meeting. Perhaps the wrap dress oozes a little too much femininity? In any event, my colleagues essentially damned the traditional wrap dress from business meeting appropriateness...and I think I agree!

DVF is the Queen of the Wrap Dress. Every Professional Diva should have a couple in her wardrobe.
In sum, when it comes to dresses in business meetings, my colleagues and I agreed to the following:

1. A sheath dress on its own is okay in a business meeting, so long as the dress is not sleeveless. Capped, quarter-length, or long sleeves are necessary if the dress is worn on its own.

2. If the sheath dress is sleeveless, it is okay in a business meeting if accompanied by a blazer. A cardigan is not an option. 

3. Traditional wrap-dresses are not appropriate in a business meeting, even if accompanied by a blazer.

So that's what we came up with...what do you think? Are dresses in a business meeting okay? Are certain dresses more acceptable than others? Let me know!

Martini Thursday...Nautical Kate!!

Nautical Kate it really Thursday...the week is practically over! And then Christmas is right around the corner. And then the New Year is right up the street. Where did the time go? Let's have a martini and think about it, shall we!

2 oz Raspberry-Flavored Vodka
2 oz Lemonade (Homemade or Store-Bought)
Splash of Pink Champagne (The Sweeter the Better)
Lemon Wedge for Garnish

1. In a shaker, combine Raspberry-Flavored Vodka, Lemonade, and Ice. Shake!
2. Strain mixture into a chilled martini glass.
3. Top off with Champagne.
4. Garnish with a lemon-wedge.
5. Make a toast to the end of a successful work week.
6. Send The Pro Diva a message to let her know where the time went!

Thanks for the recipe JB! Enjoy the Nautical Kate...and Drink Responsibly!

About the FitBit.....

Photo Credit:
Is it just me, or has there been an overabundance of articles floating around the Internet stating that one's life expectancy is shortened if she works at a job where she sits most of the day? And to make things worse, these articles say that even if you workout religiously, it does not negate the fact that you are sitting down all day. Now, I am one of those people who sits at a computer or in meetings for most of the day. As was the case at the beginning of my career, I no longer run around courtrooms all day...I am now what they call "sedentary." Ugh! Such an awful sounding word! And, as I said, it doesn't matter that I work out 5 days a week...I am still considered sedentary!

My first reaction in reading these articles was to panic, which lasted approximately 5 minutes (no more, I swear!). My next reaction was to come up with a list of ways to move my body more during work hours. Made the list...blogged about it...made some changes. But I still felt like I needed something quantifiable where I could actually see the results of these changes...clearly, the lawyer in me had taken over. Luckily for me, a combination of events and necessities caused me to stumble upon the FitBit. Have any of you heard of this device? Well, give me a couple of minutes and I'll explain...

The FitBit is sought of like a pedometer with super powers. It's a tiny, wireless device that you clip to your shirt, pants, belt buckle, bra, etc., and it tracks the amount of steps you take on a daily basis. Additionally, the FitBit tells you how many calories you burn, how many miles you walk, and how many flights of stairs you climb throughout the day. Nice, right?! The FitBit also syncs to a free online program that permits you to log your food and activities, and track your weight. And of course you can earn badges for meeting certain milestones, and you know us adults love badges! Depending on the type of FitBit, the device may also double as a sleep tracker. It tracks when you fall asleep, and the amount of times you wake up throughout the night. It is a pretty neat feature for someone like me who generally has difficulty sleeping, and who may want to show the results to a sleep specialist.

Photo Credit: Ashstar01
So now that you have a general idea what a FitBit is, I can freely explain to you how the FitBit has helped to reduce the amount of time I spend sitting all day. It's actually a really simple explanation...the FitBit proved to me in unmistakable numbers that I was lazy. Sure, I go to the gym for an hour and a half a day, but during the other 22 and half hours...LAZY! After seeing my raggedy stats, the answer was pretty clear...I needed to move my tail a whole lot more. And I did!

I started taking 10 minute walks around my office three times a day. I began parking my car far away from the entrance of my office, the gym, the supermarket, or any place with an entrance. I boycotted the elevators at my office and forced myself to walk up the stairs. I closed my office door and jogged in place for 5 minutes at a time. I walked around my house a lot more than I normally would. I walked Q in the park an extra 10 minutes per day. I really was making an effort to increase my activity. And let's be honest...I was really trying to outsmart my FitBit. Whatever works right? And then the plot thickened...

In addition to its overall fabulousness, the FitBit program also allows you to connect with friends to challenge each other to walk and move more. I mean it ranks you against them and everything. So it adds a competitive element while helping you to be less sedentary. All in all, the FitBit has been a great accountability tool for me, and I think it will help other professionals that sit during most of the day.

So, that's the FitBit in a seriously quick does so much more than I can possibly describe in one post. Please check out the FitBit website to get more information on the different devices and additional online features. And you (and your waistline) can thank me later!

Disclaimer: FitBit did not pay me to rave about this product. Please be assured that these are my opinions free from any commercial or financial influence....seriously!

Bright Lipstick In The Office...Yay or Nay?

Russian Red by MAC Cosmetics
So...a few weeks ago, I headed to San Francisco and met one of my girlfriends to hang out for the weekend. She actually lives in the NYC area, but she was in San Francisco for work and asked me to come join her for a weekend of shopping and sightseeing...I was all in! I'd never been to San Francisco, and I certainly need no excuse to do some extra shopping. I hopped on a plane Friday night and I was out!

On that Saturday, my friend and I made a beeline for the shopping areas. And there were plenty of areas to see! We "stumbled" onto the Westfield San Francisco Centre Mall and "tripped" over to the MAC Cosmetics counter at Nordstroms. Somehow, we started trying on lipsticks...I was looking for a "shocking" red lipstick, and my friend happened upon a hot pink-ish color. I completely fell in love with my Russian Red lipstick and the accompanying Night Moth lip liner, but my friend was a little apprehensive about purchasing the hot pink lipstick...even though it looked AMAZING on her! Like me, she's a lawyer, and she had some pause about where she would wear such a bright color. I immediately responded that she could wear it anywhere outside of the why did I instinctively go there? The truth is that I had no intention of wearing my new red lipstick in the office. In fact, I am not a fan of wearing any bright, outstanding makeup in the office...but especially not a bright lipstick. Not surprisingly, my friend agreed.

Which brings me to my question for you Divas. In a professional, office environment, is it appropriate to wear bright lipstick? What about bright makeup in general? Does your answer vary depending on one's profession? Or one's office culture? What say you?!

Shapewear is Not the Devil!

Divas....let's talk shapewear! Better yet, let's talk about the stigma associated with shapewear, or spanx, or girdles, or whatever you feel comfortable calling them. Before I continue, let me just say that shapewear is not only for those women who are overweight. Shapewear is not only for those women who have a little extra weight on their mid-sections, or who are looking to slim their thighs. Shapewear is for everyone! Ask Kim Kardashian. Kim is always coming under fire because she unapologetically wears shapewear. Say what you want about Kim's choice, but you can't say that she doesn't look amazing in her clothes.

I recently had a conversation with a seasoned female colleague regarding professional apparel and shapewear, and we both agreed that shapewear can be instrumental in presenting a polished look in the professional world. We both admittedly have worn some sought of shapewear to the office because it made our particular outfit look better. Whether it be full slip or a pair of control-top hosiery, I've worn it. And guess what...I, like Kim, look amazing in my clothes, too...yeah I said it!

Honestly, I don't know what the big deal is with shapewear. My colleague, who has been making her way up the corporate ladder for 20 years, has said that it is borderline unprofessional when women choose not to wear shapewear in a professional environment when appropriate. Her biggest issues: "back rolls and booty jiggle." Her words...not mine! But I can't disagree with her. I'm a little bit old school when it comes to booty jiggle. I grew up in the house with a grandmother who made me wear "panty girdles" under my dresses to church to minimize booty jiggle. It wasn't appropriate for church, and it's not appropriate for the office...but that's just one Diva's opinion.

So my question to you is this: Why is there such a stigma against shapewear? Why do some women feel ashamed to acknowledge that they wear shapewear? In speaking to other women, the consensus seems to be that shapewear is associated with being overweight or out of shape. Some associate shapewear with being fake, or presenting a faux silhouette to hide flaws. Whatever the negative connotations may be, I can only see good in wearing shapewear, as necessary, in professional environments. And for those of you who have no problem with shapewear in the office, below is a quick mini-guide to wearing shapewear with your most common office wear. For those of you who think that shapewear is the devil, check out the guide anyway....maybe I'll change your mind! Enjoy!

A Professional Diva's Guide to Shapewear

Sheath Dresses
What Shapewear Can Do - Shapewear can diminish the appearance of back fat and/or back rolls, and can also flatten your stomach to create a smooth look underneath a sheath dress. Shapewear can also minimize booty jiggle. Don't judge the terminology...especially since you know what I'm talking about!

Type of Shapewear - Full slip shapewear is the perfect way to smooth your back and your front in one shot. Be sure to get a brand that includes a bra with adequate support. If your goal is to only smooth your stomach, try half slip shapewear. This will also eliminate booty jiggle. Also, be sure to select a nice pair of hosiery to give polish to your legs; many brands have a control top option that can also provide light support to smooth your stomach and eliminate booty jiggle.

Dresses Made of Jersey Material
What Shapewear Can Do -Jersey material is common for traditional wrap dresses. While extremely cool and comfortable, this material is notorious for showing back rolls and rear-view muffin tops. Depending on your body structure, booty jiggle may also be an issue.

Type of Shapewear - A shapewear body suit may be appropriate here. The body suit resembles a swim suit, and can smooth your front and back. Be sure to get a brand that includes a bra with adequate support. If you are concerned with booty jiggle, try a body suit with a full panty or short.  As I said before, a nice pair of hosiery with a control top option may also provide light support to smooth your stomach and eliminate booty jiggle.

Full-Skirted Dresses
What Shapewear Can Do - Full-skirted dresses tend to cinch at the waist, so having a smooth waist and stomach is essential to the look.

Type of Shapewear - You can achieve maximum smoothing of the waist and stomach with high-waisted shapewear. This type shapewear could come in the form of a panty, or shorts. Not only does it smooth out the waist and the stomach, but it can also combat booty jiggle (so long as the panty is not a thong).

Pencil Skirts
What Shapewear Can Do - The pencil skirt is a staple item for professional women; however, the pencil skirt loses its thunder when accompanied by booty jiggle. Additional failure occurs when the belly isn't smoothed out adequately.

Type of Shapewear - Half slip shapewear is the perfect tool to avoid pencil skirt catastrophe. It eliminates booty jiggle and it smooths the the same time! Or, you can select a shapewear panty or short. You can also go for the full slip if you are looking to tame your upper body as well. Whichever you choose, booty jiggle will not be a problem!

What Shapewear Can Do - Booty jiggle...booty jiggle is the issue here...booty jiggle is the difference between a polished professional and a....jiggling professional. I won't discuss any further, because you get it!

Type of Shapewear - Hosiery with high support is the best option here. While I am not a fan of full leg shapewear underneath pants (too much bunching), I do like hosiery. With hosiery, there are many options to tame different areas. Control top tames the tummy and booty jiggle. There is also all-over, shaping hosiery that can tame thigh jiggle.

What Shapewear Can Do - Blouses are essential business wear for women...back rolls, however, are not. Shapewear can help to smooth your back when wearing blouses.

Type of Shapewear - A shapewear body suit would be perfect here! It will smooth your back and your waist, and if you get one with a supportive bra...double win! If you are wearing your blouse with a pencil skirt and you need some all-over smoothing, full slip shapewear will do the trick.

What are your thoughts on shapewear? Heavenly? Or devil's work? Let me know! 

Vote....That Is All!

Greetings Divas and Gents! As many of you know, tomorrow is Election Day in the United States. Now, I won't bore you with a recap of the fascinating history of voting rights in the United States. Nor will I use this post to convince you to vote for the candidates that I intend to vote for tomorrow. What I will do is encourage you to get out and vote tomorrow. Do not be deterred by long lines and inconvenient circumstances. For those of you affected by Hurricane Sandy, do not allow on-the-surface obstacles stop you from exercising your right...being displaced does not mean you have to be disenfranchised. In short, PLEASE GET OUT AND VOTE!

 In honor of Election Day, here are a few tips to help you make your trip to the polls more pleasant:

- DO be patient.
- DO be sure to bring your government-issued identification...can't vote without it!
- DO be sure that you are at the correct polling site. Also, know when your site closes.
- DO wear warm clothing (if necessary). You may have to wait outdoors and you don't want the cold to deter you from voting.
- DO thoroughly read and follow the instructions for voting at your polling place. If you do not understand something, ask!
- DO bring a snack with you. Just in case the lines are long and you get a little hungry. Bring extra for your fellow voters if you can.
- DO bring your medications. In the event of a long line, you don't want to lose your place if you need to take your meds. And bring water!
- DO volunteer to bring those who need a little extra help to the polls. 
- DO NOT bring campaign paraphernalia with you to the polls.
- DO NOT leave without voting!

And...for those of you that have been displaced by Hurricane Sandy (like myself), here is some information regarding Election Day accommodations:

New York - According to the New York State Board of Elections, Governor Cuomo has signed an Executive Order "which provides for a voter who is a resident in the federally-declared disaster counties of Nassau, Rockland, Suffolk, Westchester and of New York City (which includes Bronx, Kings, New York, Queens and Richmond) who have been displaced by Hurricane Sandy too vote an affidavit ballot at any poll site in New York State, other than their regular poll site." There are some restrictions, so please see the New York State Board of Elections website for more information.

New York City - Please see this notice regarding Poll Site Changes Post Hurricane Sandy from the New York City Board of Elections.

New Jersey -  The New Jersey Department of State has issued a directive to county elections officials to permit New Jersey registered voters displaced by Hurricane Sandy to vote electronically. This directive is also applicable to first responders who have been displaced. For more information, click here.

I hope this information is helpful. Please be sure to vote. Also, follow and join me tomorrow night on Twitter as I live tweet Election Day results...from my parents' couch! Happy Voting!

Need to De-stress? Ditch Your Work Phone!

Now, I know I lost most of you with the title of this post, but please hear me out! Like many professionals, my company has provided me with a cell phone so I can access my work emails while away from the office. I also use this phone to compose and respond to emails, open and edit work documents, and bill my time spent working on projects. As a result, my work phone has become my third arm. I feel naked without it, and I check it incessantly. Naturally, I didn't see anything wrong with my behavior...until I came across an article in Women's Health Magazine stating that our cell phones are a big source of everyday stress. Wait...what! 

My regular Chronicle readers know that I am always searching for ways to destress. As I have said in the past, being a professional and dealing with the everyday ups and downs of Corporate America usually brings unintended and unwanted stress. We all know that stress can have negative effects on your physical, emotional, and mental health, and I'm not with that! So I am open to any and all suggestions to alleviate stress, including entertaining the claims in the Women's Health article. 

After reading the article, I started thinking about the correlation between my work phone and stress. I then realized that treating my work phone like it is a third arm is sought of like working all day long...I am always "on." Even in those moments when I am supposed to be relaxing. And then it clicked...I need to cut off my third arm...not completely, but a little more than I have been in the past.
That being said, I started thinking of ways to cut back, and I came up with a few ideas that I believe will help me, and you, to minimize our stress and provide some much needed detachment from our work phones. In the interest of sharing, I have outlined my ideas below so that we can all work on destressing and taking a break from our work phones. Take them or leave them....but I'm willing to bet you'll be less stressed if you take them!

1. Revoke your phone's access to the breakfast, lunch, and dinner tables - A quick way to mess up the digestion process is to read an email that reinforces just how busy you are, or are going to be, at work. Use your meal time to relax and eat without checking your mail. Ideally, you can give yourself at least 2 hours per day when you are not focusing on your email and work.

2. Put the phone out of reach when it's time to go to bed - You can't read emails while you sleep, so don't have your phone within reach when you head to bed. I'll admit, I do keep my personal cell phone on my nightstand, primarily because I use my phone as an alarm clock. But my work phone is always tucked away in my work bag...on silent! 

3. Keep the phone out of the bathroom - Let's face it, having your phone in the bathroom is not the most sanitary practice. Also, just about anything you do in your bathroom can be a relaxing and relieving experience. Why ruin this time by checking your work email! Instead of inviting your phone to share a bubble bath with you, take a magazine or a book or your iPod. Anything to help you chill out!

4. In the morning, try not to check the phone until you get to the office (if possible) - I don't know about you, but I use the time it takes me to get ready for work in the morning to get my mind right for the day ahead. If you're heading to the office anyway, why not wait until you get there to check your email. I always say that if someone needs to reach you urgently, they can always call. Give yourself the morning to get it together before heading into the office.

5. Don't check the phone while driving - Not only is it illegal in many states to use your cell phone while driving, but it is also dangerous. Leave your phone in your work bag or pocket until you are done checking your email. Instead, use your drive to listen to music or relax in silence. The best part about my commute is the chance it affords me to listen to my music, and sing to the top of my lungs, and not care if the person in the car next to me is looking at me like I'm crazy. It's sort of like therapy!

That's all I got for now! Can you think of any additional times and/or places where you should ditch your work phone? Share in the comments below!

Martini Thursday...the Cosmopolitano!

The Cosmopolitano

So...last weekend, I journeyed to Chicago to attend a gala for a wonderful organization. After dinner, my friend and I headed over to restaurant to find more food (there's never enough food at these galas!) and dessert. As I am always on the lookout for martini recipes, I immediately dived for the drink menu...and it did not disappoint! I stumbled upon the Cosmopolitano, a drink that quickly caught my eye because it included both vanilla and amaretto, two of my favorites. And when it arrived, it was great! It was like dessert in a glass, and I instantly knew that I had to share the recipe with you all. So here it is!

2oz of Vanilla-Flavored Vodka
1 oz of Amaretto
1 oz of Cranberry Juice 
1/2 oz of Lime Juice
Lime Wedge (For Garnish)

1. In a shaker, combine Vodka, Amaretto, Cranberry Juice, Lime Juice, and Ice. Shake!
2. Strain mixture into a chilled martini glass.
3. Garnish with a lime wedge.
4. Take a sip.
5. Remark to a nearby spouse, friend, and/or pet how delicious the Cosmopolitano is, and how glad you are that you tried the recipe.
6. Go to your favorite electronic device and go to the Martini Chronicles.
7. Leave a comment underneath this post and exclaim your love for the Cosmopolitano.
8. Repeat as appropriate.

Enjoy! And Drink Responsibly!

Hurricane Sandy vs. My Electronics!

Well...Hurricane Sandy has come and gone, and she showed out! I knew that she was going to cause damage, but I certainly wasn't expecting all of this! I thought I was prepared...I wasn't. I was hoping that we would not lose power...we did. I was praying that there wouldn't be too much damage...I was wrong. All and all, Sandy showed her ass!

Photo Courtesy of Mother Jones
When I woke up yesterday morning, it was evident that Sandy was not playing. I was in the house alone with my dog because the Stud had been called to work the day before, and he was stuck in New York. As the wind whipped against my windows, I remember praying that they didn't come crashing in. Q was pissed because I wouldn't let him sit in the window like he normally does, so he had an attitude. All day I stayed and Q. And all day I made a point to keep my laptop, both cell phones, and my iPad charged just in case we lost power. And then the rain came...and it lasted all night.

I was sitting on my sofa blogging and watching DVR'd episodes of the Wendy Williams Show when the power went out at 8 PM....shit! But I was ready! I had all of my electronics charged and I had my flashlights within reach. I hopped in the bed, turned on my iPad, and started reading a book I had downloaded earlier in the day. I informed the Stud and my parents that we had lost power, and that I was going into electronic preservation mode. I was asleep by 10...and so was Q.

Photo Courtesy of
I woke up the next morning, and went outside to see what Sandy had done overnight. There were trees everywhere! Including on top of houses and cars. A mess! Fortunately, no one was injured in my immediate neighborhood. I went back inside and attempted to contact the Stud and my parents, but my cell phone had other plans. My phone was beeping red and only had about 10% battery life left. Not a problem! I hooked up my phone to my fully charged computer so I could get some more juice. After charging for about an hour, my parents called and urged me to find a way to their house in Brooklyn. The problem with that was that all of the combinations of bridges and tunnels that could get me to Brooklyn had been closed due to the weather conditions. I promised my parents that I would go out to my car to check the news to see when those crossings would be open. I let my cell phone charge for a little while longer, and then my computer died...great!

NYC Taxi Cabs Under Water...Sheesh!
Now that my cell phone was charged, I thought it would be a good idea to return some text messages to let folks know that I was dice! My cell phone refused to send the messages. So then I decided to make a few quick calls...nope! No calls would go through. Now what? Well, I grabbed my work cell phone and thought I would send! No service! I was I took a nap.

The Verrazano Bridge...My Ticket to Brooklyn
When I woke up I realized that I had not been in contact with my family in about 3 hours, which I knew would cause panic. Mainly because my family is the type that watches the news all day and night whenever something like this happens. As such, anything that was happening in any part of New Jersey was happening to me. All of it! It really wasn't...but if it's on the news, then my family thought it was happening to me! Just as I was about to call my parents to let them know that I was not buried under water or a tree, I realized that both of my cell phones were about to die. They had been roaming for three hours and, let's face it, the battery life on smart phones suck! So I went out to my car to charge my electronics.  While I was sitting in the car, I turned on the news to see if the bridges and tunnels heading into Brooklyn had reopened...epic fail! The news station was all static. I guess Sandy messed up 1010 WINS, too. So, I tried my work phone again, and I had service! I searched the Internet to see if any of the crossings had opened, specifically the Verrazano Bridge that connected Staten Island and Brooklyn...nope, still closed! Ugh!

Image of LaGuardia Airport...Courtesy of the Stud
I decided to drive around a little bit while my electronics were charging to see whether the streets were clear and to plot my exit route. It was then that I saw all of the damage. There wasn't much flooding in my neighborhood, but there were trees and damage everywhere. Also, all of the street lights were out, and the folks in New Jersey refused to drive properly. After driving around for about 45 minutes, I headed home. My electronics had been charged to at least 50%, but that didn't matter to me...I was getting out of New Jersey!

Q and I were out!
I ran in the house and haphazardly packed a suitcase, including all of my electronics that had been  failing me since last night. I used my work phone to check the crossings again...the Verrazano Bridge was open! I packed up Q's belongings and food, and we were out! As soon as I made it across the Goethals Bridge and crossed into Staten Island, all of my electronics started going off. My personal cell phone, my work phone, my iPad...with tons of messages! Including messages from the Stud and my parents trying to figure out why I hadn't answered my phone or returned any messages...they were worried (they love me!). I made it to my parents house in about 35, Q, and all of my electronics.

The moral of the story: Sandy - 1, My Electronics - 0!

Writers Note: While I may poke fun at my experience during Hurricane Sandy, I realize that this was a devastating storm that affected many people in a more serious way. My thoughts and prayers are with those affected in any way by Sandy.  

Hurricane Prep...and My Warped Thinking!

As many of you may know, the East Coast is bracing itself for Hurricane Sandy. The shelves in the supermarkets are empty. The gas stations are crowded. Both New York City Transit and New Jersey Transit plan to suspend service this evening, and the bridges and tunnels may be next. I've received email notifications from my electric, gas, and cable companies pretty much telling me that they are on the job in the event of power and system outages. There isn't a battery or flashlight in sight, and all of today's football games have been replaced by around-the-clock weather news. Like I said...bracing!

All the water is gone! (I didn't take this pic!)

 And of course, I've made a few preparations myself. I managed to find batteries for our flashlights, and I also purchased a few cases of water and extra dog treats for Q. I am charging up all of my electronics just in case we lose power, and I've already filled up my gas tank and gotten cash out of the ATM. I have checked in with my family in Brooklyn and Queens to make sure that they are ready for any potential foolishness that Sandy will bring. Again...bracing!

With all of this going on, is it weird that I am overly-concerned with work? As I write this post, I have no idea whether my office is going to be closed or not, and it's making my anxious. So anxious, in fact, that I still haven't decided how angry I'm going to be if the weather news interrupts the Giants game. Logically, it would make sense for the office to be closed. The area is prone to flooding and there are trees everywhere...trees that can potentially fall due to heavy winds. But, I haven't heard anything yet. So now I'm wondering if I am going to be able to work from home...but what if the power goes out. Then what? Why is this bothering me so much? Ugh!

So there you have it...the Professional Diva is a workaholic, and cannot let her mind focus on the weather or the Giants game because she's consumed with work. Go ahead...judge me! But as warped as my thinking may be, I'm not the only one. At least two of my fellow professional friends are struggling with the same thing. One of my friends works on Wall Street, and she is mulling over her work options for tomorrow morning. Since the trains and buses won't be running, she is considering whether she should drive to work. But is that the best thing to do since its supposed to be super windy and rainy tomorrow? She's nervous. And then I have another friend who's a consultant and needs to be in San Francisco for an important meeting tomorrow. Clearly that's not going to happen, and the folks he's supposed to meet with will completely understand why he is unable to meet, but guess what he's doing...he's planning to attend the meeting anyway via the Go-To-Webinar online meeting system. Clever, but he's been so consumed with setting up this meeting that he forgot to purchase water and batteries, and his gas tank is empty. As I write this post, he's waiting in line to get gas. He's not happy.

See, it's not just me! So now you all know a little bit more about me and my warped way of thinking. To recap...storm coming...I'm kind of ready...concerned about my work situation...and the Giants game is NOT on! Wait...I take that's on! Go Big Blue!

For those of you in the path of Hurricane Sandy, how are you preparing for the storm? Are you thinking about work like I am? Am I completely nuts?!

Be safe!

Beyond the Pink Ribbon: Breast Cancer Awareness

Greetings Divas! As you all should be aware, October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. According to the Centers for Disease Control, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the United States, and is one of the leading causes of cancer death among women of all races. In honor of this month, my good bloggy friend Fifi Buchanan (@divinehostess) has created a fabulous vlog to: (1) Encourage women to get to know their breasts so that they're aware when abnormal changes occur; and (2) Share 5 steps to equip our bodies to prevent cancer.

Fifi covers a lot of ground in less than 4 minutes. Do me a huge favor and check out her video below. She has a powerful message that I think you should hear!

Special thanks to Fifi for allowing me to spread her message on the Chronicles. Please be sure to stop by Fifi's blog, The Divine Hostess, and show her some love. Also, follow her on Twitter.

One more thing....check out these important breast cancer screening tips, courtesy of the American Cancer Society:

- Starting at the age of 40, women should have yearly mammograms so long as the woman is in good health; 

- Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam about every 3 years; 

- Women should conduct regular breast self-exams starting in their 20s; 

- All women should know how their breast normally look and feel, and should immediately report any breast change to their health care provider. 

- Please note that there are different breast screening recommendations based on a woman’s family history, genetic tendencies, or other factors. These women should speak with their doctor about the need for additional tests.

Be well Divas!

Martini Thursday....Raspberry Peach Martini!!!

Raspberry Peach Martini

Greetings Divas and Gents! Can I take a brief moment to say that I am so happy to be back to blogging regularly! Life has been so busy over the past few months...both at work and at home. As a result, my blogging schedule has raggedy of me! But I'm back! And I have decided that I will be making a greater effort to be the blogger that you all have supported over the past (almost) two years.

Now that I've had my moment, I wanted to share a new martini recipe with you is, after all, Martini Thursday! This week, I present the Raspberry Peach Martini! This recipe started of as a smoothie, but I managed to turn it into a spirited drink for my Chronicle readers. I hope you like it!

2 oz of Your Favorite Vodka
2 oz of Chambord Raspberry Liqueur
1 oz of Peach Schnapps
Fresh Raspberries for Garnish

1. In a shaker, combine Vodka, Chambord, Peach Schnapps, and Ice. Shake!
2. Drop a few raspberries into a chilled martini glass.
3. Strain mixture into martini glass.

Easy! Enjoy your Raspberry Peach Martini, and have a great weekend. Drink Responsibly!

Fall Makeup Inventory!

Greetings Divas! Summer has passed, and Fall has emerged. As the seasons change, I like to take an inventory of the items in my makeup bag and purge those products that have expired. I firmly believe that maintaining a fresh and clean makeup bag is a must. As such, knowing the shelf life of those products in our makeup bag is extremely important. Worst case scenario, old and expired makeup may have devastating effects on our skin and eyes (the worst offender by far is old mascara). 

In the spirit of maintaining our health and youth, we should all take regular inventory and toss out old makeup that may be damaging to our skin and eyes. I use the changing of the seasons as my reminder to look through my makeup, and I suggest you select a reminder point that works for you. Once you toss out your old makeup, make a list of the replacement products you need and head out to your favorite department store and/or pharmacy to snag them. Finally, make a note of when you purchased the new product and give it an expiration date based on its shelf life. Let's get to it Divas! 

For your convenience, I have listed the shelf lives of the most common types of makeup. Enjoy!
Foundation (Oil Free) – 1 Year
Foundation (Cream or Compact) – 1½ Years
Concealer – 1 Year
Powder – 1½ to 2 Years
Blush – 1½ to 2 Years
Eye Shadow – 1½ to 2 Years
Mascara – 3 Months
Eyeliner – 1½ to 2 Years
Lipstick – 1½ to 2 Years
Lip Liner – 1½ to 2 Years
Lip Gloss – 1½ Years

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