Seek Happy Days to Happy Nights

Good (far too early) morning all!  As much as it pains me to say this, I’ve been up since shortly after 6am, despite falling asleep shortly after midnight…  I promise, I used to be able to sleep in well past 9 am.  But that time, clearly, is no more.  Yesterday, as I mentioned, was a perfect day on the OCNJ Boardwalk with my mother and sister, and, after a tasty BBQ (done by candle-light as our porch light went out mid-grilling… it’s what the Pilgrims would’ve done), my tiny sister and I decided to head back there for some more summer fun.

Beach babes!!

When we were dropped off, we had a few things in mind:

  • A summer souvenir
  • Monkey Bread
  • Salt Water Taffy
  • The Henna Shop!!

The original Henna Shop: An Ocean City tradition

Fun story: Every summer for four years, from 2005-2008, I worked at the Henna Shop (and it’s sexy younger sister, Bad Kitty).  If you’re unfamiliar with henna, it’s a traditional, semi-permanent [1-4 weeks] form of body art, and just looks beautiful, leaving a lovely reddish brownish stain on the skin (here’s more information on henna via the wiki entry!!)  These stores defined my summers in Ocean City and, after working the cash register for the first year after graduating from high school, I was trained as a painter.  Thus began my love of henna, and the only artistic talent that I feel I possess (though I’m fan-tastic at doodling weird peacock chicken hybrids in the middle of long conversations when I have a pen handy…  be warned.)  When I held the henna, smelled the mehndi oil, I felt like I was some sort of supa cool henna princess bringing a little bit of sexy Indian tradition to the shoebies.  Then again, more often than not, I painted Tinkerbell and dragons on folks… but it was a trade-off.  Even though most of the work we did was from stencils, every now and then I’d get a chance to free-hand some pretty intricate and delicate pieces, and it made me feel like a henna rockstar.

Last night, I got a chance to jump back into it, if only for a few.  I volunteered to paint some of my old boss’ friends kids, pro bono.  I was a little nervous to have the pen back in my hand after not painting for the past two years, but I jumped right back into it.

For the record, I'd normally never wear a dress to paint... too much squatting on tiny stools.

Check out my iron-clad focus. And my audience.

We always do the painting in the windows or on a raised platform, and let folks view the whole process.  It’s seriously one of my favorite places to be.  As a thanks for taking care of her friends, my old boss let me paint my sister and, as a fun treat, myself for a little extra bling/memory of Ocean City for my BEST FRIEND’S WEDDING IN A WEEK!! (don’t worry Caitlin, they’re very small and tasteful.)  Here’s a bird’s sister’s eye view as I painted a brand new design on little Kiki (they added some new ones that are stunning, but veryyyy intricate!)

Can't wait to see how this turned out!

And here’s me… doing myself (ew, painting my own henna, you pervs)

For the record: Painting your own feet is hard!

We wrapped ourselves up, thanked my ol’ coworkers, and rewarded our hard work with….

sweet, warm, cinnamony, and delish

Don’t worry, Kiley wasn’t in a vicious gang fight resulting in her hands being bandaged… she’s just protecting her henna!

I also picked up some take-home treats for my coworkers at Shriver’s Saltwater Taffy, and may or may not have eaten a PB&J taffy for an early breakfast….

No wonder I have painful meetups with dentists and oral surgeons...

Since today’s my last day at the shore for another month, it’s time to get busy living or get busy dying (as the saying goes….)

Have you ever gotten a henna tattoo?  How about ANY OTHER TATTOO?!  TELL ME ABOUT IT!! (Real talk, I love tattoo talk.)