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President Obama Nominates Ketanji Brown Jackson to the U.S. District Court!

Ketanji Brown Jackson
 I am always excited to hear good news about Professional Divas excelling in their respective fields. Needless to say, I was over-the-wall excited when I heard the news that President Obama nominated Ketanji Brown Jackson to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. President Obama's nomination is especially impressive because Ketanji Brown Jackson is the first African-American woman to be nominated to this particular court in over three decades...three! 

Ketanji Brown Jackson is a double graduate of Harvard University: she received her B.A. from Harvard University in 1992 (magna cum laude), and her J.D. from Havard Law School in 1996 (cum laude). During her career, Diva Jackson has clerked for several federal judges, including Associate Justice Stephen G. Breyer of the United States Supreme Court. Diva Jackson has also served as an Assistant Special Counsel at the United States Sentencing Commission, and an Assistant Federal Public Defender in the District of Columbia. Diva Jackson is currently serving as Vice Chair and Commissioner of the United States Sentencing Commission. She is truly amazing!

Judge Norma Holloway Johnson (1932-2011)

 If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Diva Jackson would become the 2nd African-American woman to serve as a full judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The first was Norma Holloway Johnson, who served on the Court from 1980-2003.      

As a legal professional, who is also an African-American woman, I love to hear stories of women in my field who are succeeding at the highest level. These women inspire me to keep going and to keep climbing! Please give Diva Jackson a round of applause!

Diva Shout Out to Raffaella Fico!

Now....I normally don't do this, but I came across something that I had to share with my fellow Divas. I would like to send out a great big diva shout out to the beautiful Raffaella Fico. Why am I shouting her out? Well...the lovely Raffaella walked the runway at the Pin-Up Stars fashion show this past Saturday during Milan's Fashion Week...and she modeled two gorgeous two-piece bikinis...and she's six-months pregnant...and she looked AMAZING! I mean, she was stunning! The swim suit, the belly, the was all great! I don't even want to talk about it anymore...see for yourself!


No hating ladies! Clap for her!

About LinkedIn!

Picture're at a networking event or a conference (or some other place where business cards are being exchanged). You have had a series of scintillating conversations with potential clients and/or business acquaintances. You manage to score several business cards, and you vow to follow up with these individuals for various reasons in the near future. A week has passed, and you remember that you need to reach out to these individuals, but you are foggy as to why you initially wanted to keep in touch. You may have even lost some business cards over the past week. Does this story sound familiar to any of you?

I can't tell you how many times I have been at a networking event or a conference, and have forgotten the reasons I requested an individual's business card. I have also lost plenty of them along the way, which is clearly unfortunate and careless on my part. But like many other obstacles that face business professionals across the globe, there is an app that I believe will alleviate business card regrets. 

How many of you have heard of CardMunch? A few months ago, I briefly discussed the CardMunch app on the Chronicles, but I was not able to try it out because I did not own an iPhone (CardMunch is not currently available for Androids). It just so happens that I recently received an iPhone through my company, and I was anxious to try out this app. The verdict: it is one the most fabulous and useful smart phone apps on the entire planet! Let me tell you why...

CardMunch is an free app from LinkedIn. CardMunch allows you to take a picture of a business card, upload it, and send it to the fine folks over at the CardMunch factory to transcribe the information from the card. Several minutes later, your contact's information appears in your CardMunch contact list. Done and done!

In addition to eliminating a plethora of business card regret, CardMunch also has additional features that have proven to be ridiculously convenient. For example, once you have taken a picture of the business card, you have the option of inputting notes to accompany the card. This is especially helpful if you are the type of professional who writes down reminders about a contact on the back of his or her card when you receive it. CardMunch also allows you to instantly invite a contact to connect with you on LinkedIn (if the individual is not already a connection). You also have the option of storing your new contacts on the CardMunch contact list, or you could store the new contact on your iPhone contact list. This is certainly a great option if you are the type that has a separate folder for business contacts on your iPhone. CardMunch also indexes all of your contacts, and allows you to fully search by your contact's name, address, or by any notes you have entered for that contact. And for those of you worrying about losing your CardMunch contacts in the event of a smart phone meltdown, don't! CardMunch backs up and syncs your contacts to your web account.

All in all, this app is a complete winner! It is easy to use, and it only takes a few seconds to take a picture of a business card, enter notes (if you like), and send it over for transcribing. I am quite confident that using this app will help you be a more efficient networker, and may help you with business development and maintenance. Since I have stumbled upon CardMunch, I have pushed it on several of my colleagues as a networking solution, and now I am pushing it on you the interest of sharing of course!

One more with all other products, services, and apps that I discuss on the Chronicles, I have not been solicited or paid by CardMunch or LinkedIn to review or promote this app. I simply think it is a great idea and a great tool for business professionals. I am also a little ticked off that I didn't think of it first. Try it out and let me know what you think!

And, if anyone associated with CardMunch or LinkedIn happens to stumble upon this post, please (I beg you) hurry up and come up with an app for Androids! Thanks in advance!

Martini Thursday...Blackberry Pomegranate Martini!!!

Greetings Divas and Gents! I've been super busy this week, as I have been away in D.C. at a conference for work. I did remember, however, that today is Martini Thursday! As such, please join me in welcoming the Blackberry Pomegranate Martini to the Martini Chronicles. This recipe was inspired by a martini of the same name that is showcased at The Market Restaurant and Bar in Harding Township, New Jersey. I couldn't wait to share the recipe with you! You will tell me if you like it, won't you? Perfect! So, please enjoy the Blackberry Pomegranate Martini, and have a great weekend!

2 oz of Citrus Vodka
1 oz of Pomegranate Juice
1 oz of Triple Sec
1 Splash of Sour Mix
1/2 cup of Blackberries
Frozen Blackberries (For Garnish)

1. In a martini shaker, muddle non-frozen blackberries for about a minute.
2. Add citrus vodka, pomegranate juice, triple sec, sour mix and ice to shaker. Shake!
3. Drop a few frozen blackberries into a chilled martini glass.
4. Strain mixture into martini glass.

What do you think? Please be sure to let me know in the comments section below. Again, have a great weekend! And Drink Responsibly!

5 Ways To Quickly Boost Your Savings in One Month!

Have you ever wondered how much money you could save if you buckled down and focused on the task? If you gave up some of the luxuries you enjoyed every day? Well, here's your chance! For one month, focus on boosting your savings by cutting back on just a few things. In addition to what you already plan to save, take the money you are going to save during the month by utilizing these tips and add it to your savings. You may be amazed by how much more you can save. You may also realize that you can do without some of these luxuries. Check out these 5 Ways to Quickly Boost Your Savings, commit to making the sacrifice, and watch your savings grow!

1. Take Your Lunch to Work...Every Day...For One Month! - The average person spends about $8 for lunch...if they're getting it from somewhere other than their own home. In a 20 day work month, that could add up to $160 per month...yikes! In order to boost your savings, make your lunch at home and bring it to work with you...every day for one month. At the end of the month, you'll see just how much you save!

2. No Starbucks...For One Month! - Now...I know many of you are probably going to skip over this tip while mumbling under your breath "the Pro Diva is nuts if she thinks I'm giving up Starbucks for a month!" Believe me, I get it! But think about it like this...a tall Pumpkin Spice latte cost approximately $3.50. Multiply that by 20 work days per month, and you get $70. My math has never been great, but $70 would look much better in my savings account than in a Starbucks cash register. Just think, if you made your own coffee for one month, you can boost your savings by at least $70. Give it a try!

3. Cancel Your Newspaper Subscription...For One Month! - Honestly, I haven't read a physical newspaper in years, primarily because I read everything online. I can find the same news published in the local paper on the paper's website...easily saving approximately $15 per month!

4. Skip the Dry Cleaners...For One Month! - I know for a fact that it is super convenient to send off your blouses and shirts to the dry cleaners for laundering and pressing. I'm also willing to bet that most of your blouses and shirts are not "Dry Clean Only." So, for one month, skip the dry cleaners and wash and press your own shirts. The savings? Approximately, $20!

5. Boycott the Mall...For One Month! - It pains me to even put this in the universe, but the mall is trouble! You know it...I know it...everyone knows it! Somehow, just being in the presence of clothes and shoes triggers something in our brains that automatically sorts through all available bank accounts to find the money to purchase something new. The only way to avoid this automatic trigger is to stay out of the mall altogether. It's only for a month! Side note: when the month is over, resist the urge to head to the mall and overspend.

There you have it! 5 ways to quickly boost your one month! Again, commit to making these sacrifices, and be sure to keep track of the amount of money you save during the month. At the end of the month, evaluate your savings and see whether some of the sacrifices you made can be incorporated into your life going forward.

Do any of you have tips that have helped you to save more money? Please share!

Spinning.....My Newest Obsession!

I have been authoring the Martini Chronicles for almost two years, and I have had the opportunity to actually and virtually meet and fellowship with many Professional Divas that face the same professional values, ideals, and challenges. One of the major challenges that my fellow Professional Divas and I face is that there are not enough hours in the day. Trust me when I tell you that I sincerely wish that I had more time to clean my home, cook for my family, and hang out with my girls...but clearly, I do not! There is one thing, however, that I always try to make time for...working out. With all the sitting down I do at work and all of the lunch meetings and trainings that I attend, my body would be utterly anti-sexy if I didn't manage to get in some exercise at least 4 times per week. 

As many of you know, running has typically been my exercise of choice. I have graduated from both the CouchTo5K and BridgeTo10K programs, which is a huge accomplishment for me. I also regularly frequent a boot camp class so that I can get my strength training served to me with a little bit of crazy (courtesy of the instructor, of course). All of these workouts have one thing in common...they all allow me to work out for 60 to 90 minutes, which is usually all the time I can spare in my busy day. 

After becoming what I consider an amateur runner, I started getting bored and my knees were starting to ache a little more than usual. I knew that I needed to find another activity that would allow me to get a great cardio workout and that would not put as much strain on my knees. I swear Living Social must have had a hidden camera in my the exact moment I was discussing this issue with a colleague, I received an email from Living Social telling me that I could purchase 5 indoor cycling classes for $29. It was too much of a coincidence for me to pass it up, so I purchased the deal...quickly!

Now, I had never taken a spin class before. Scratch that...I had attempted to take a spin class a few times in the past, but the second my butt started hurting (about 2 minutes into the class), I quit! I was determined not to let that happen to me this time. So, I signed up for my first class at the Revolution Indoor Cycling Studio in Pine Brook, New Jersey, about 15 minutes from my office. Here we go!

As I headed over to the studio on the evening of my first class, I literally talked to myself the entire time in the car to convince myself not to quit this time. I mean, I was seriously scolding myself! When I made it to the studio and walked in the door, I immediately knew that I was not going to quit and that this was going to be my newest obsession. How did I know you ask? For one, the people were so nice! And nice goes a long way with me. I could also tell right away that this studio was a family business. Family goes a long way with me, too! I just instantly felt comfortable, and for me, comfort is extremely important. It was evident that this was my first class, but no one made me feel bad about it. Lisa, the fabulous instructor, was nice enough to help me set up my bike and explain how the the bike and the class works. I was ready....I think!

And so the class begins...the room is dark and the music is bumping...really good, heart pumping music...and then here comes the pain in my butt...ugh! Right on cue, Lisa announced that the pain in your butt goes away after a few classes...whew! I stuck it out through the hills and the weights, and before I knew it an hour had passed and the class was over. No, seriously! We had done an entire hour and I had biked about 18 miles, and I hardly noticed because I was having so much fun. And then I saw the single most shocking thing that I had seen in the last hour...are you guys ready for this....I had burned 512 calories...SHUT UP! And I had a great time doing it! At that very moment, spinning became my new obsession

Since I have taken this first class, I have been back 5 more times. I have taken classes not only with Lisa, but also with her wonderful sister Traci and the amazing Christian. I have also dropped about 9 pounds in the last 6 weeks or so since I started spinning. Needless to say, I will definitely be back for more. Oh...your butt does stop hurting after taking a few classes...thank God!

For those of you inspired by this post to try my newest obsession, here are some of the benefits of spinning:

- You burn a lot of calories (anywhere from 400 - 700 in a 60 minute session)
- You build muscle tone in your core, butt, and thighs (the most problematic areas ever!)
- It is a low impact exercise (better for your knees)
- It is a great stress reliever (which is a must for Professional Divas)
- The spin bikes allow you to control resistance and go at your own pace
- The classes are fun (the music does it for me)

Have any of you taken an indoor cycling class? If so, what are your thoughts on the classes? Would you recommend these classes to others?

I want to thank all of the instructors and staff over at the Revolution Indoor Cycling Studio for contributing to my newest obsession. You guys are just as much as a factor in my enjoyment of the classes as the classes themselves. For more information on the studio, click here. For more information on indoor cycling in general, please see 

Have a great week!

Martini Thursday...the Pear Cosmotini!

The Pear Cosmotini

Greetings Divas and Gents! I know it has been quite some time since I have posted a new martini recipe, and I sincerely apologize to each of you. Life has been busy as of a good way of course! My family has been doing great and work has been really busy, both of which are good things. But I am cognizant of the fact that I have been neglecting the Chronicles and its readers, which is bad thing. In any event I realize that balance is necessary, and I am actively making strides to reincorporate balance back into my life...starting this week!

There is one good thing that has come out of me being busy and missing the opportunity to bring you all new martini recipes...I have amassed tons of recipes that I want to share with you all! Some I have created on my own. Some I have found in different restaurants and bars. And there are some that I have received via email from my fabulous readers (thank you!). Today...the Pear Cosmotini! This recipe combines the sweet taste of pear with the tartness of a classic Cosmopolitan...a double win! Try it out. Let me know what you think. feels so good to be back! Enjoy!

2 oz of Your Favorite Vodka
1 oz of St. Germain Liqueur
1 oz of Cranberry Juice
½ oz of Triple Sec
¼ oz of Rose’s Lime Juice
Pear Slice (For Garnish)

1. In a shaker, combine Vodka, St. Germain, Cranberry Juice, Triple Sec, and Lime Juice. Shake!
2. Strain mixture into a chilled martini glass.
3. Garnish with a Pear Slice.

I hope you all enjoy the Pear Cosmotini. I also promise that I will be more present around here! Have a great Friday and weekend! And Drink Responsibly!

Musings on Diva Career Wear...From a Man's Perspective!

Have you Divas ever wondered what the men in your office think about your work attire? I'll admit that I think about it all the time...mainly because I happen to know a fair amount of men that have strong opinions on what women should and should not wear in a professional environment. While I don't always agree with their assessments, I am always intrigued by their perceptions of a professional woman solely based on her wardrobe choices. Which types of women's suits are considered stylish? Which types are seen as frumpy? Just how much cleavage is appropriate in the work place? Are skirt suits preferred over pants suits? Are dresses okay? What about form-fitting apparel? Is the after-work cocktail dress too sexy? Heels or flats?

I obviously have my own opinions on issues regarding a woman's professional wardrobe, and I have shared them on the Chronicles in a number of different ways. As such, I'll shut up and shift the Chronicle spotlight to the Professional Diva's counterpart...the Professional Gent! Please welcome Marvin Gilmore and his opinions to the Chronicles with a virtual round of applause. He is the true definition of a Professional Gent with an impeccable sense of style. I am so happy that he has agreed to join us today to give a male’s perspective on three different types of career wear for women: Corporate Conservative, Business Casual, and Creative Wear. Believe me when I tell you that Marvin has brought some pretty good ideas to the table…so go grab a glass of wine, and let’s see what Marvin has to say!

Hello readers!

I’m delighted to have the opportunity to give my opinion and a few tips on women’s career wear in the year 2012…from the perspective of a stylish gent.  First, I must note that historically, the idea of “style” originated with women. Professional wear, however, started with men, and women have increasingly adapted and created variety to the genre. Since there are so many different work locales, types of work, dress codes, etc., I would like to break down the wardrobe possibilities into three categories of career wear: Conservative Corporate, Business Casual, and Creative Wear. Let’s dive right in shall we!  

Corporate Conservative:

Corporate Conservative wear is typically for you ladies in a profession where image and brand presentation is everything! This includes, but is not limited to, lawyers, politicians, doctors, and business executives.   Most office dress codes, and more conservative and seasoned professional women, will discourage younger and less-seasoned professional women to push the boundaries when it comes to career wear in the corporate environment. These seasoned professional women advocates what I call the classic “grade school secretary look,” a look that will ensure that you will be taken seriously and not seen as a piece of meat. You know the type. It looks like this:

Now, we all know this is NOT the route many modern professional women choose to take. From a man’s perspective, there are MANY ways women can look stylish and professional in the male-dominated Corporate America. One person whose style I admire is news reporter and XM radio host Gayle King (who is also best friend of one lady named Oprah Winfrey).  The reason I admire her personal style is that she manages to put so many different looks together, and still retain a cool, calm, classy, and professional poise. See these pics for an example:

In the first picture, Gayle is wearing a conservative black dress that shows off her arms, and a skirt that hits right at the knee…just enough so that it is not “classless” or eye-catching in the wrong way. Then, she added numerous accessories that complement her dress.  Fortunately, Gayle isn’t the only professional woman in a corporate environment who can do this. Check out this woman rocking a female power suit…after all, power suits are not just for men:

Courtesy of
This trick is to remember that Corporate Conservative does not necessarily equal frumpy and boring.

Business Casual:

In my opinion, this is the BEST category of the three because there is so much freedom. When it comes to business casual, the key is to keep your clothing professional while de-emphasizing the casual. Please note that business casual does not mean slouchy, off the wall, provocative, or distracting clothing. It does, however, present an opportunity for women to play with color, a stark contrast from the traditional greys, blacks, and blues that are customary in Corporate Conservative wear.  Here are two examples of my favorite business casual outfits:

Courtesy of

Courtesy of
With business casual, I like to see well-tailored and fitted blazers, casual fabrics (such as linen and seersucker), patterns  (like a muted pinstripe), and small details (like flashy accessories).  By way of another example, check out this outfit from designer Ann Mashburn of (

Ann has a WONDERFUL store based out of Atlanta, which is right next to her husband’s store (, where I am a frequent customer. In this picture, you see that the model has on a fun button-up shirt with a classic pleated dress skirt. Now, fashion may say that this look is back in style, but this is a classic look that NEVER went out of style! The moral of the story is that professional women working in a business casual environment shouldn’t be afraid to play around with different pieces and ideas.  Do remember, however, not to go overboard with patterns and color pairings. Also, remember to focus on fit, color, moderation, and proportion. What doesn’t work you ask? Taking business casual too casually by donning a fitted cocktail dress, heels pushing past 5 inches, or flashy makeup, all of which screams “come get me” instead of “let’s do business.”

Creative Wear:

This section is for you ladies that have what I like to call “creative jobs,” such as being an artist, interior designer, freelance writer, blogger, etc. The cool thing about having these types of jobs is that you dress for the image you want to portray. If you want to be an artist that wear suits…go for it! The thing here is to discover your own personal style…hone in on it and recognize what you like to wear and what pieces fit you and your personality. Clothes aren’t meant to be a uniform, but they are meant to tell a story about the person in them.

That’s all for now! Hopefully my tips are useful to you. Please feel free to ask any questions or make any comments, and I will surely answer as quickly aspossible. Stay sexy and  stay stylish! *takes a bow*


Divas, please join me and thanking Marvin for sharing a gent’s view on career wear for women. As always, show your love in the comment section below. Later!

More About Our Guest Blogger: Marvin Gilmore is the Co-founder of Suave Society, an upcoming men's style & lifestyle blog covering the southern fashion scene. Based out of Little Rock, Arkansas, Marvin graduated from of Ouachita Baptist University with a B.A. in Marketing, and is currently pursuing an MBA. He is dedicated to solving and giving advice on the millennial man’s struggles with style, and giving men a new perspective on fashion. Outside of his day job at an eMarkting Firm, Marvin works as a part-time style consultant and does freelance writing for numerous blogs upon request. Follow him on Twitter (@ThatManGilmore)
or contact him at

Professional Divas Must Have...

Solid Body Tints...Courtesy of LUSH!

Well...this past Saturday I found myself back at LUSH Cosmetics. As you may recall, I visited LUSH a couple of months ago and completely fell in love with their products. I went to the mall on Saturday in search of a dress, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that a new LUSH store had opened in Newport Center Mall...YES!!! I suddenly felt gravity unwillingly forcing me up the escalator and into the store (that's my story and I'm sticking to it). Of course I received a warm welcome from the sales staff, who were more than happy to help me spend money I really did not need to spend. And how do they achieve this? Well, they start trying out all kinds of product on you...and that is how I discovered the most fabulous product ever!

As some of you may know, I am a firm believer in wearing hosiery when I wear dresses and skirts to work. I just feel like it gives your work wear a more polished look. I usually receive minimum opposition to this stance during the winter months, mainly because stockings and tights are great barriers to the cold weather. Also, there are so many stylish varieties of hosiery out there that stockings and tights have become somewhat of an accessory. But many women look at me like I'm crazy when I tell them that I also wear hosiery during the summer months...please attempt to hide your shock! Seriously though, I do wear ultra, ultra sheer hosiery with my skirts and dresses in the can hardly tell they're there!

As I'm sharing this information with Michcella, the sales associate at LUSH, she responds by showing me Black Stockings, a new body tint. She rubs the product on my lower leg, and then starts blending it. And guess leg looked as if I was wearing a pair of sheer hosiery. In other words, my leg looked amazing! The body tint allowed me to have the polish afforded by hosiery without wearing a pair of stockings. My legs were literally glowing! Check out what the LUSH website has to say about Black Stockings:

Dress your pins and smooth Black Stockings over your legs to give them a gorgeous, sun kissed glow. Created for darker complexions, Black Stockings balances out skin tone and gives a stunningly realistic tan with its coppery pigment and hints of shimmer. Have a paler skin tone? You can use this sexy little number too for healthy looking bronze shine. Spicy pimento berry oil, warming cinnamon and a hint of sweet orange oil give Black Stockings its warm, deep fragrance, just like a warm Caribbean beach.

Now, I have dark skin, so Black Stockings worked perfectly for me. If you have lighter skin, LUSH also carries Silk Stockings. Here's what they say:

Silk Stockings is one of our fantastically beautiful solid body tints. Give your legs some colour with a gorgeous sheen and an even skin tone all year round. This is the one for pale skins, a pinky blend of colours that melt onto the skin to give your gams a natural looking tint. Plus, it has the sensuous fragrance of jasmine, rose and sandalwood oils for an added level of seduction. Smooth some on for instant sex appeal. It also washes off easily, so your sheets won't suffer melt-y messes. You know, in case one thing leads to another. 

Nice, right? In addition to priming your legs, the body tints can also give pale skin a little bit of extra color...without the use of a tanning bed. I love this product, simply because it alleviates my concern of not presenting a polished look at work when wearing dresses and skirts. It also offers a very nice compromise between hosiery sticklers like myself and those who want to go bare-legged. But don't take my work for it...actually, you should take my word for it...this product is wonderful! Which is why I must recommend LUSH's body tints as a must have for my fellow Professional Divas!

So, who's willing to try it out? If so, please be sure to share your thoughts with everyone. Have a great week!

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