Beauty tips for the Mother of the Bride

Goldy-peach-mascara sludge is not pretty.

This past Saturday my amazing, wonderful daughter got married. She was beautiful, the wedding was beautiful, the groom was beautiful, and the mother of the bride, aka me, was, well, let’s just say I did my best!

So now, let me provide you with the five tips for extreme MOTB beauty:

1. Don’t chip your tooth the week before the wedding. If that means living on yogurt for a week, so be it. (Besides, a yogurt-only diet will increase the chances that your dress will still fit.) Your dentist will be booked with all those diligent patients who plan their teeth-cleaning sessions six months in advance. To squeeze you in and do a temporary spackeling job will require “emergency” billing…

2. If you use retinol (and who doesn’t?) don’t get your eyebrows or lip waxed. Either stop using the retinol a week before, right around when you chip your tooth, so that you spend a week all chipped and wrinkly, so you can have a lovely eyebrow arch and no mustache, or save the waxing cost for the dentist and pluck (and shave) on your own. Why? Because if you use retinol, your skin thins, even where you don’t put it, like your eyelids. When they pull off the wax (this is gross) your skin will come off. Just a layer, but you will be red, swollen like a toad, and crusty. Take my word for it.

3. But what if you forget and get all toad-like and scabby? That’s where eye makeup comes in. Put a slice of cucumber on each eyelid, lie back and let the vegetable do its work. After about 15 minutes you will be less toad-like. Put a thin layer of Neosporin over the offended area, and then concealer. Then peach eyeshadow (blends nicely with the red eyelids) and white under-brow cream. Top with a glittery gold shadow, and mascara. Remember not to cry. Goldy-peach-mascara sludge is not pretty.

4. Give yourself an hour to do your hair. Even if you are just pulling it into a clip, it will take an hour and a full bottle of extra-hold to keep it from standing on end.

5. Remember, it will all be a funny story in a week. And everyone will be looking at the bride.

Mazel tov!

Looking for something out of the ordinary?

This is an ode to the unusual! Much as we all love the tried-and-true #regencyromances, and the #dystopian #zombie #newbooks, there are some unusual stories being written out there that are worth stepping out of our usual rut for. The #WeNeedDiverseBooks movement captures those stories about places we don’t usually see in current literature, or books by writers who are a bit more diverse than the usual crowd.

The #WeNeedDiverseBooks blog relay allows us to do just that. So with great thanks to Ekaterine Xia, aspiring world tyrant and dominatrix , who “tagged” me to be the next diverse blogger, here I go!

Q: What are you working on?

A: My new book, The Duel for Consuelo, comes out in 4 weeks! So I am working on the final touches on my big announcement. And then, I will be working on the next book in the Castillo family series… more on that another day!

Q: How does your work differ from others of its genre?

A: Can you name another book about Colonial Mexico in 1690-1720? I didn’t think so. Historical fiction tends to cling to England from 1700-1924. There are a few brave souls who write about the same time frame in America. To dip into Mexico, at that mysterious time before the Industrial Revolution, when Mexico was still ruled by distant Spain and its local Viceroy, is really out of the ordinary.

Q: Why do you write what you do?

A: I grew up in Mexico City, and fell in love with the famous poetess of the late 1600s, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz when I was a young feminist in college, so my fascination couldn’t help but lead to my first main-stream fiction novel, Josefina’s Sin (Atria/Simon & Schuster 2011.) As the Enlightenment crept in illuminating the darkest corners of Spain and eventually Mexico, the Inquisition’s targets, Jews and Spaniards of Jewish blood, were absorbed more and more into the mainstream. But they never completely disappeared, guarding their secrets and identity in the face of certain death. That’s the core of The Duel for Consuelo.

Q: How does your writing process work?

A: It’s very strange. I think, and think, and think. I research and think some more. I scribble an outline. I refine it and think. I walk and think. And then, by miracle, all at once, I sit down and write for a couple of months!

Interested in seeing more about my books? Click on the tabs above for my website, and for the books themselves! Sign up to get updates, and be the first to read The Duel for Consuelo!

Next week, be sure to visit the blogs of the next three bloggers in the relay:

Sandra Ramos O’Briant, , is the amazing author of the Sandoval Sisters’ Secret of Old Blood. It is a riveting story of New Mexico, harrowing and beautiful, a book like no other!

Eleanor Parker Sapia, Latina Author,, writes of Puerto Rico. Her eagerly awaited debut novel of a midwife in Puerto Rico, A Decent Woman, comes out this summer.

Lisa J. Yarde writes fiction inspired by the Middle Ages in Europe. She is the author of six historical novels, which take place during Europe’s medieval period, including two works set in England and France, and a series about the last Muslim rulers of Spain.
Her novel Sultana: The Bride Price takes place in fourteenth-century Moorish Spain.

Happy Diverse Reading!