Conversations with Ace

Mrs. K’s Activated Charcoal Toothpaste Review

This is not a sponsored post. I purchased activated charcoal toothpaste from Mrs. K’s SkinCare, because my teeth don’t like my favorite things, like coffee and wine, as much as I do. Opinions are my own, and there are no affiliate links in this post!

Activated Charcoal Toothpaste Review - The Palmetto Peaches

What is activated charcoal?

Honestly, I don’t know how to explain it, therefore, I went to New World Encyclopedia. Also known as activated carbon, activated charcoal, is a “form of carbon that has been processed to make it extremely porous and thus to have a very large surface area available for adsorption and chemical reactions. It is usually derived from charcoal.” (New World Encyclopedia)

The first time I heard of charcoal being used for anything other than a grill, was last year. My sister bought me my first pair of blending sponges (LOL), and one of the sponges was bamboo charcoal infused. Then there was all the hype/drama over charcoal masks. So when I saw Mrs. K’s activated charcoal toothpaste on Instagram—I figured it was my turn to give it a try.

Activated Charcoal Toothpaste Review - The Palmetto Peaches

Photo: Mrs. K’s SkinCare

The Good

Made with natural ingredients.

Mrs. K’s toothpaste ingredients include: activated charcoal, sodium bicarbonate, bentonite clay, virgin coconut oil, essential oil, ginger and sea salt. I’m trying to use more natural products. Her natural deodorant is next on my shopping list.

Leaves my mouth feeling refreshed.

Since the activated charcoal removes toxins from the mouth, my mouth feels insanely clean after brushing. Cleaner than it did with “regular” toothpaste.

Teeth whitening remedy.

Last year I tried one of those laser teeth whitening things, and hated it too much to notice any results. I’ve only been using this toothpaste for about 2 weeks, so I won’t share any pictures just yet. But my teeth are whiter and brighter y’all, and it ain’t just from the iPhone 7 camera.

A photo posted by ace (@acealexa) on

Can be used for multiple purposes.

Other than working to get you a healthy mouth, activated charcoal can also be used for food poisoning or digestive problems. I may or may not have tested this theory on a hangover.

Cost effective.

A little bit of this toothpaste goes a long way. I bought the 4oz jar or $10. It’s more expensive than (some) what drugstores carry, but I won’t have to buy any toothpaste for a few months.

Bonus: My order came with a sample of Mrs. K’s lemongrass and sage bar soap. Y’all know I love some sage. The handmade bar, called Maya, makes me want to bite it whenever I use it. LOOK AT IT!
Activated Charcoal Toothpaste Review - The Palmetto Peaches

Photo: Mrs. K.s SkinCare

The Bad

The taste.

The saltiness and gritty texture is different from what I’m used to. It was weird at first, but doesn’t bother me now. Honestly, what did I expect from charcoal?

The Ugly

The mess.

I’ve been brushing my teeth for 29 years, and I still drool all over myself and sink. The activated charcoal toothpaste hasn’t left any major stains, yet, but use something for a cover-up to be safe. I would show ya’ll what the toothpaste looks like on my teeth, but I’m so embarrassed. My selfie skills are bad enough. Imagine what they looked like with black paste in my mouth.

Have you tried activated charcoal toothpaste, or anything with activated charcoal? Let me know what you thought about it in the comments! Visit Mrs. K’s SkinCare if you’d like to try her handmade, natural products!

Ace Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Black Girl Magic: Exploring My Healing Powers

I was about 8-years-old when I discovered healing powers. One night I was having excruciating stomach pain. My mama grabbed her blessing oil, and wiped it onto my forehead in what felt to be shaped like a cross. Minutes later, the pain was gone. That wasn’t the last time I needed that same oil for pain.

Exploring My Healing Powers -- The Palmetto Peaches

Fast forward to 12 years later. After burning incense purchased from a store, which I’ll leave nameless, I had weird dreams and nightmares. While visiting a similar store, Natural Vibrations, I told the cashier about my creepy experience. She said:

“You’re not the first person to tell me this. I have something to cleanse your room, but don’t bring stuff from them into your space again.”

Sure enough, the dreams went away that night. Although I come from a predominantly Christian family, I’ve never considered myself a religious person. Gospel music is my jam, the scriptures are inspiring, and I even slide into church from time to time (aka whenever I visit my aunt). However, I became the girl who only prayed when she “needed” something, and as I got older it became clear that I was entering the I’m spiritual, not religious life.

Why I’m Exploring My Healing Powers

It’s been on my to-do list for a year.

One of my 2016 goals was to learn more about chakras. Along the way, I reconnected with things like crystals/minerals and sage wands. Check out my awesome raw rose quartz and chunky pyrite from The Hoodwitch.   Exploring My Healing Powers -- The Palmetto Peaches

I’ve always believed in magic.

As a little girl, I would wish on the brightest stars for all kinds of things, including to wake up with magic like Sabrina the Teenage Witch. In my “adult” years, I’ve discovered things like the Law of Attraction and meditation. Those methods are more centered around self-awareness rather than glitter and wands, but they’re still magical.

Genetics.

While my aunts and mom were the “pray on it” type, they were also the clairvoyant + third eye on fleek type. I can bet money that there’s something in our blood. There are several stories I can tell that might give you goosebumps– like how my aunt saw the 1977 Tenerife airport disaster (deadliest plane crash in history) before it happened. Or how I sensed my nephew’s surgery the night before he was rushed to the hospital.

I’m not casting any spells or reading palms (yet), but I’m definitely tapping more into my spirituality. Have you explored your healing powers? What has worked for you?

Ace Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

7 Questions People With Unique Names Hate Answering

Unique names are bittersweet. While being the only *insert name here* on Facebook is great, the headache that comes along with it isn’t. Folks with unique names have no choice but to be great: Beyoncé, LeBron, Oprah, Acecily, Donnica — to name a few. We have to be great to forget all the stress and annoying questions we get in our daily lives.

7 Questions People with Unique Names Hate Answering - The Palmetto Peaches

On top of never finding a souvenir, and giving a fake name to the Starbucks barista, there are several questions we are tired of answering.

7 Questions People With Unique Names Hate Answering

  1. “Did your mama really give you that name?”

    In my head I usually respond with, “Did your mama teach you to mind your business?” OLC people try to avoid calling me Ace because it’s a “man’s name”. K…7 Questions People with Unique Names Hate Answering - The Palmetto Peaches

  2. “Does it mean something, or did your parents make it up?”

    This one isn’t too bad. I appreciate genuine concern about my life, but just know that sometimes folks with unique names get this question A LOT. If I’m being introduced to new people at an event or bar, I answer hear question at least 5 times. Depending on my mood, the response changes.

  3. “Are you from here?”

    Because Americans can’t have names originated in other countries, I guess.7 Questions People With Unique Names Hate Answering - The Palmetto Peaches

  4. “Can I call you something else? I can’t say that.”

    Can you not?

  5. “Why is it spelled that way?”

    The same reason you’re so nosy. That’s an awful comeback, but whatever.

  6. “Can you break it down into phonics for me?”

    Okay, so no one has ever asked me that, technically. It really just reminds me of having to write the phonetic spelling of my name during my college graduation. Long story short, the announcer BUTCHERED it.

  7. “Is it hard for you to find souvenirs?”

    The fact that someone has to ask that should basically answer the question. Yes, it is hard. In fact, I’ve NEVER seen a keychain, t-shirt or Coke can with my the same name on birth certificate.

Do you have a unique name? What questions are you tired of answering?

Ace Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Awkward Questions to Ban from Your Dinner Table

My high school global studies teacher always told us:

There are three things you don’t discuss at the dinner table: money, religion and politics.

His words have been my life mantra ever since. I never minded telling folks, “sorry, I don’t discuss politics” in bars or parties. Like, can we talk about this when alcohol isn’t involved?

Awkward Questions to Ban From Your Dinner Table -- The Palmetto Peaches  -palmsinatl.com

Maybe I’m extra careful because I’ve lived a very far from traditional life. Disclaimer: Close friends and family members, who actually care about you and aren’t trying to control your life, may ask you the questions below. I’m referring to the nosy Sherlock Holmes’s who want to push their beliefs on you. Harsh? #IAintSorry 

Awkward Questions to Ban from Your Dinner Table

“What do your parents do for a living?”

I used to respond with, “I don’t have parents,” but that made things even more awkward. You know the movies where a poor person and rich person fall in love, and the rich family disapproves? That’s what this question reminds me of. It also reminds me of all the people who don’t have positive relationships with their whose parents, or the ones living without parents.

“When are you going to start having kids?” Followed by, “Why?” or “Why not?”

Please mind your own uterus friends. Aside from having the right to decide to not have kids, some people deal with infertility, miscarriages and other life changing issues.

“Did you gain weight?”

Actually, I avoid anything weight related. Unless I know the person was working towards a specific goal. Even “Did you lose weight?” is an awkward question for some. Stress, depression and sickness all effect weight. The last thing you need to do is bring it up for discussion around others.

“When are you going to get a ring on that finger?” Also see, “When are you going to put a ring on that finger?”

Let single folks be single in peace. What if you’re ruining a surprise proposal, or pressuring this person to settle for an idiot?

“Who did you vote for?”

This may also be disguised with, “How do you feel about the Presidential Election?” No. Nope. Nah. It’s a setup. A setup to sabotage dinner and/or friendships.

Moral of the story: ask yourself if this question is appropriate for a group setting before asking anything. Spark a conversation, but don’t set the damn room on fire. K? K!

What cringeworthy life questions have you been asked? If you don’t mind reliving it, comment below!

Ace Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

How to Survive Mercury Retrograde

What is Mercury Retrograde? Kathy Biehl and OM Times are going to help me explain this one.

“First, the technicalities: Mercury is retrograde when it’s traveling backwards. That’s an optical illusion, of course, and happens when the planet’s orbital speed changes in comparison to the earth’s. It’s the planetary equivalent of speeding up on a highway, passing a car and seeing it fall far behind after you in the rear-view mirror.

How this works: When Mercury is moving in reverse, the areas of life it governs do not play by the usual rules. Anything related to communication and travel requires extra attention. This includes phones, computers and electronic devices, the mail (remember that?), cars, public transportation and commutes.”

From December 19th, 2016 to January 8th, 2017 Mercury will be in retrograde in earth-sign Capricorn. Shout out to my fellow G.O.A.T.S! To some of you that means absolutely nothing, while some of you maybe seeking shelter in your adult fort.

How to Survive Mercury Retrograde -- The Palmetto Peaches

Maybe it’s all in our minds, but here’s what I’m doing to get through the weird communication and technology struggle this year.

How to Survive Mercury Retrograde

Take responsibility.

Please don’t play yourself by blaming your bad decision making on Mercury Retrograde. You did not spend your rent money on a new wardrobe because the planets and stars are out for a twirl. Keep in mind that although this phase lasts a few weeks–the decisions you make could last forever. FOR-EH-VAH.

How To Survive Mercury Retrograde -- The Palmetto Peaches

Change your perspective.

Mercury Retrograde is a great time to reflect. If you’re going to be stuck in your feelings for a while, you might as well try to make sense of it. A few months ago, I lost precious sleep over this thing called life. There’s an actual note in my iPhone which reads, “What am I doing?” Instead of thinking the universe is against me, I try to switch my attitude. Lately I’ve been saying yaaas to things I normally let anxiety control, and nah to things that didn’t sit well with me.

Write down your feelings and thoughts. 

Writing works for some, but maybe you’re the thinking out loud type. In that case, sitting down for a face-to-face conversation or a phone call might be your thang. If you have tendencies to overreact or overthink, putting it on paper is a good first step to clear your head. My journal has stopped me from saying PLENTY of stupid things. Trust me.

Don’t make any super serious life decisions.

…with lots of emphasis on “super serious”. This is where I went wrong in the past. For years I thought my birth day was jinxed. Now I blame Mercury, and 2016 was the first time I made the connection. Last year’s party was “a time” for lack of better words. I’m still too salty to share those series of unfortunate events publicly. Just believe me when I say that although I’ve had A LOT of great celebrations in my life–there are 28 years of awkward, sketchy and sad birthday stories to be told.

 

The world isn’t coming to an end (at least for now), but life maybe a little crazy during these times. Just grab your sage wand, meditation playlist and good vibes. You got this!

Have you ever felt the force of Mercury Retrograde? How did you survive?

Ace Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Jingle Bell Jams: Christmas Playlist

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Well, it is to some people. If you need a little help getting into the Christmas spirit, here are some tunes to set the mood. These Jingle Bell Jams are great for last minute holiday gift shopping, your festive holiday party and of course, Christmas Day!

Jingle Bell Jams: Christmas Playlist

Jingle Bell Jams

  1. Gee Whiz, It’s Christmas – Carla Thomas
  2. Sleigh Ride – Tamar Braxton
  3. I Listen to the Bells – Luther Vandross
  4. All I Want for Christmas Is You – Mariah Carey
  5. Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town – Mariah Carey
  6. 8 Days of Christmas – Destiny’s Child
  7. This Christmas – Donny Hathaway
  8. A “DC” Christmas Medley
  9. Jingle Bells – Patti LaBelle
  10. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas – Judy Garland
  11. I Want to Come Home for Christmas – Marvin Gaye
  12. Frosty the Snowman – The Jackson 5
  13. One Little Christmas Tree – Stevie Wonder
  14. Little Drummer Boy – Four Tops
  15. Santa Baby – The Pussycat Dolls
  16. Ave Maria – Stevie Wonder
  17. Give Love on Christmas Day – The Temptations
  18. Joy to the World – Whitney Houston
  19. The Christmas Song – Anthony Hamilton
  20. Winter Wonderland – Andra Day
  21. Sleigh Ride – TLC
  22. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus – Jessica Simpson
  23. Mistletoe – Colbie Caillat
  24. Carol of the Bells – Destiny’s Child
  25. O Come, All Ye Faithful – Pentatonix
  26. Blue Christmas – The Lumineers
  27. Last Christmas – Ariana Grande
  28. Feliz Navidad – José Feliciano
  29. Silent Night – Boyz II Men
  30. Run Run Rudolph – Straight No Chaser

What are your favorite Christmas or holiday songs? Did they make my list? Comment below or tweet me @PalmsInATL!

Ace Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches