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Ha ha, bet you did a double take there, eh curlies? :) You know I think of my products as my "children", and I'm happy, no THRILLED, to announce we're adding to the Jessicurl family! :-)

For a while now, you have been asking us to provide you with a stronger hold styling product. If we had to rate our current styling line up, Gelebration Spray and Rockin’ Ringlets would be light hold, and Confident Coils would be medium. That definitely leaves room in the category for a stronger hold styling product and we hear you that you’ve been filling that need elsewhere. Well, you don’t have to anymore, Jessicurl fans! After months of testing, we’re super excited to offer you a thicker, stronger hold styler for those of you who need it.

This new product is much thicker than Confident Coils and very gel-y in consistency but does not flake in the hair like many gels can. While it can dry crunchy, that initial crunch scrunches out really easily, leaving the hair very soft to the touch, but the curls hold up all day. No ramen-noodle curls here!

One of the best parts about this product is the frizz control. Seriously people, the frizz control on this stuff is NO JOKE! If you currently use Rockin’ Ringlets, you’ll find that the two work together really well. If you don’t find you need a curl enhancer (which is what Rockin’ Ringlets is), the new product will provide you with fabulous hold and frizz control but without giving you “helmet head.” It’s pretty awesome, if I do say so myself. :)

The only thing left to do is name this thing! That's where you come in. :) All of our cutest names (Rockin' Ringlets Styling Potion, Confident Coils Styling Solution, Too Shea! Extra Moisturizing Conditioner, to name but a few), have come from contests where YOU got to suggest names. Since those were so successful in the past, we're doing it again. :)

 

Follow this link to the official Name Jess’s New Baby Contest page.  Submit up to three different suggestions for our new stronger-hold styling product. (But if you only have one, that's fine too. If you have more than 3, fill out the survey twice.) Be sure to read the contest rules, because we will be using the winning name forever. What does the winner get? A $500 gift certificate to Jessicurl.com and world-wide fame! :) This product is awesome. Don't you want to be the one that names it?! Yes, yes you do.

 

Of course I had to make a video to demonstrate just HOW excited I am about the launch of this new product! :)

 


Jessicurl "Name Jess' New Baby" Contest.

OFFICIAL RULES and TERMS AND CONDITIONS

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY

 Jessicurl wants you to help us name our new firmer hold styling gel.

 THE FOLLOWING CONTEST IS INTENDED FOR PLAY IN THE UNITED STATES ONLY AND SHALL ONLY BE CONSTRUED AND EVALUATED ACCORDING TO UNITED STATES LAW. DO NOT ENTER THIS CONTEST UNLESS YOU ARE LOCATED IN THE UNITED STATES AT THE TIME OF ENTRY.

 NO PURCHASE OR PAYMENT OF ANY KIND IS NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE THE CHANCE OF WINNING.  THIS IS A GAME OF SKILL, NOT CHANCE. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. BY ENTERING, ENTRANT AGREES TO BE BOUND BY THESE OFFICIAL RULES AND THE DECISIONS OF THE JUDGES, WHICH SHALL BE FINAL IN ALL RESPECTS.


1. ELIGIBILITY: Open only to legal residents of any one of the 50 United States or the District of Columbia who are 18 years of age or older at time of entry.

2. CONTEST PERIOD: You may enter the Contest between 12:00:00 PM (noon) Western Standard Time (“WST”) on September 3, 2013 and 11:59:59 PM WST on September 16, 2013 (“Contest Period”).

3. TO ENTER: To enter the Contest, go http://namejessicurlproduct.questionpro.com (“Web Site”), during the Contest Period, and complete the entry form. BEFORE YOU WILL BE ALLOWED TO SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY, YOU MUST EXPRESSLY AGREE AND CONSENT TO BE BOUND BY THE TERMS OF SERVICE AND PRIVACY POLICIES OF THE WEB SITE AND THE “NAME THAT GEL” CONTEST. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO THESE TERMS, PLEASE DO NOT USE THE WEB SITE OR ENTER THE CONTEST. Follow the on-screen instructions to properly complete and submit your entry form, including up to three product names, for the Contest.  Before completing the Entry, you will be required to agree that you have  read or have had these Official Rules read to you and you are in agreement with these Official Rules. Submissions that do not include all required information and adhere to the Official Rules as determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion will be considered void. Once submitted, Submissions will not be returned. Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, remove, delete and/or disqualify any Submission and/or Entrant (as defined in “Additional Requirements” below) it deems inappropriate or otherwise non-compliant.

REQUIREMENTS:

All submissions must be received by during the Contest Period.
The person completing the form and submitting at least one product name will be deemed the entrant (“Entrant”). The Entrant is the one (1) person who owns the email address associated with the entry.  If any group elects to collaborate on a Submission, they are required to designate one (1) person as the agent of the group to enter the Contest, agree to these rules and accept the prize on behalf of the group. Sponsor is not liable for any disputes between collaborators arising under or related to the Contest.
 

Each individual Entrant is allowed a total of three (3) names with their Entry.  

Each Submission must comply with the Web Site Terms of Service, as well as these Official Rules. In the event of any inconsistency between these Official Rules and the Terms of Service, the terms in these Official Rules shall prevail.

Each Submission must be the original work of the Entrant produced for this Contest; it may not have been entered in or won previous contests or awards); it may not have been published previously in any medium; it must not infringe any party’s intellectual property or other rights; it must be suitable for display and publication on the product itself, website and in all marketing materials (e.g. may not be obscene or indecent, including but not limited to nudity or profanity); it must not contain obscene or pornographic material, it must not contain defamatory statements (including but not limited to words or symbols that are widely considered offensive to individuals of a certain race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or socioeconomic group), it must not include threats to any person, place, business, group or world peace, it must not invade privacy or other rights of any person, firm or entity, and it must not in any other way violate applicable laws and regulations or network standards.


Each Submission must not feature or refer to any hair care products other than JESSICURL and it must not feature or reference any names or third party logos (other than the JESSICURL brand name), including but not limited to third party names, logos or trademarks.
 

Each Submission must not contain any copyrighted works (other than as owned by the Entrant)

In the event that two different individuals submit the same name, the name submitted first will supersede the later.

All Submissions will be reviewed for content before being published or judged; however, such review does not relieve Entrant from responsibility for compliance with all of the Terms of Service and these Official Rules. Submissions that do not comply in all material respects with the Terms of Services or these Official Rules or that otherwise contain prohibited, or inappropriate content as determined by the Sponsor, in its sole discretion, will be disqualified and will not be published or considered for prizes. Sponsor makes the final determination as to which Submissions are eligible to take part in this Contest and be considered for  the Grand Prize (defined below) Certain Submissions may be featured from time to time on the Web Site during the Contest Period and/or in Sponsor’s social media pages and channels, in Sponsor’s sole discretion; being selected as a featured Submission is unrelated to the Judging Criteria and does not guarantee selection as the winner in the Contest.

All Contest Entrants agree to release and indemnify and hold harmless the Sponsor from any and all claims that any commercial, advertising, presentation, Web content or any other material subsequently produced, presented, and/or prepared by or on behalf of Sponsor infringe on the rights of Entrant’s work as contained in any Submission.

4. SELECTION OF WINNER:

Entrants agree that the Sponsor has the sole right to decide all matters and disputes arising from this Contest and that all decisions of Sponsor are final and binding. The Contest Winner, by acceptance of the Grand Prize, irrevocably consents to the use of such winner's name, likeness, image, voice, performance (in connection with interviews and other recordings), biographical information, and statements relating to the Contest or Sponsor or its affiliated parties, without further compensation, in all world-wide marketing, promotion, and publicity carried out in perpetuity by any of Sponsor or its affiliated parties in connection with this Contest. Grand Prize Winner further grant to Sponsor the right to use and publish their proper name and state or country of residence online, in print and any other media now known or hereafter devised in connection with this Contest in perpetuity. Prize winners may be required to sign and return, without limitation and to the extent permitted under applicable law, a Publicity Release and Assignment of Rights to Name and any other documentation or instrument that Sponsor and/or its affiliated parties may require.

5. PRIZE DETAILS:

ONE (1) GRAND PRIZE: The one (1) Grand Prize Winner will receive (1) $500 Jessicurl Gift Certificate.

6. WINNER NOTIFICATION: Finalists will be notified by email within fourteen (14) days of the end of the Contest Period.

7. GENERAL CONDITIONS: All Entrants must have a valid contest entry and e-mail address. Contest Winner is solely responsible for any taxes on their prize if applicable. No substitution of prize is offered, except at the sole discretion of the Sponsor. Prize is non-transferable. Unclaimed prize will not be awarded.  If for any reason the Contest is not capable of running as planned, including without limitation, infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the Contest, Sponsor reserves the right, at its sole discretion to cancel, modify or terminate the Contest. Further, Sponsor reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to disqualify any individual deemed to be (a) tampering or attempting to tamper with the entry process or the operation of the Contest or any Sponsor or Contest-related Web Site; (b) violating the Official Rules; (c) violating the Web Site terms of service, conditions of use and/or applicable general rules or guidelines; or (d) acting in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person. This Contest is offered only in the United States and is governed by the laws of the state of California. All claims relating in any manner to this Contest or to any Submission must be resolved in the federal or state courts located in Humboldt County, CA.

Please see the Web Site’s privacy policy located at http://www.jessicurl.com/privacy-policy for details of our policy regarding the personal information collected in connection with this Contest.

LEGAL WARNING: ANY ATTEMPT BY AN INDIVIDUAL, WHETHER OR NOT AN ENTRANT, TO DELIBERATELY DAMAGE, DESTROY, TAMPER OR VANDALIZE THIS WEB SITE OR INTERFERE WITH THE OPERATION OF THE CONTEST IS A VIOLATION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAWS AND THE SPONSOR RESERVES THE RIGHT TO SEEK DAMAGES AND DILIGENTLY PURSUE ALL REMEDIES AGAINST ANY SUCH INDIVIDUAL TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW.


Any waiver of any obligation hereunder by Sponsor does not constitute a general waiver of any obligation to Entrants. By accepting a prize, the Contest Winner  agrees, and agrees in writing if requested, that the Submission will be deemed a Work Made For Hire under the Copyright laws of the United States, but if it cannot be so deemed, then the Contest Winner agrees to irrevocably assign and transfer to Sponsor all of his/her right, title and interest in and to his/her Submission, if any, including all but not limited to all copyright and trademark rights which he or she may have, in the United States and worldwide, therein, for consideration in the form of the prize, the receipt and sufficiency of which is hereby acknowledged. Finalists hereby waive in favor of Sponsor, all rights of “Droit Moral” or “Moral Rights of Authors” or any similar rights or principles of law that Finalist may now or later have to his/her Submission. Sponsor reserves the right to alter, change or modify a winning Submission, in its sole discretion. Upon request of Sponsor, Contest Winner shall execute and deliver such additional instrument of assignment, as may be solely deemed by Sponsor, reasonably necessary to establish the ownership of record of the right, title and interest in and to the Submission and of the copyrights transferred and “Moral Rights of Authors” waived under these Official Rules. Should Sponsor fail to request the said assignment as stated, that shall not be deemed a waiver of Sponsor’s rights and Sponsor may at a later time request the assignment. Without limiting the foregoing, Sponsor’s rights with respect to the winning Submission include, but are not limited to: (a) the exclusive right to use, publish, display or reproduce the Submission on products, packaging, advertising for purposes of trade and any other lawful purpose; (b) the exclusive right to alter, revise or change the Submission in any way; (c) the exclusive right to secure trademark and copyright registrations and other rights in the Submission anywhere throughout the world; (d) the exclusive right to license, exploit, sell, assign, or otherwise dispose of the Submission or any of the said rights included therein for any purpose which Sponsor may see fit; and (e) any and all subsidiary rights in the Submission.

8. LIMITATIONS OF LIABILITY AND RELEASE: No liability or responsibility is assumed by the Sponsor resulting from any user’s participation in or attempt to participate in the Contest or ability or inability to upload or download any information in connection with participating in the Contest. No responsibility or liability is assumed by the  Sponsor for technical problems or technical malfunction arising in connection with any of the following occurrences which may affect the operation of the Contest: hardware or software errors; faulty computer, telephone, cable, satellite, network, electronic, wireless or Internet connectivity or other online communication problems; errors or limitations of any Internet service providers, servers, hosts or providers; garbled, jumbled or faulty data transmissions; failure of any e-mail transmissions to be sent or received; lost, late, delayed or intercepted e-mail transmissions; inaccessibility of the Web Site in whole or in part for any reason; traffic congestion on the Internet or the Web Site; unauthorized human or non-human intervention of the operation of the Contest, including without limitation, unauthorized tampering, hacking, theft, virus, bugs, worms; or destruction of any aspect of the Contest, or loss, miscount, misdirection, inaccessibility or unavailability of an email account used in connection with the Contest. The Sponsor is not responsible for any typographical errors in the announcement of prizes or these Official Rules, or any inaccurate or incorrect data contained on the Web Site. Use of Web Site is at user’s own risk. The Sponsor is not responsible for any personal injury or property damage or losses of any kind which may be sustained to user’s or any other person’s computer equipment resulting from participation in the Contest, use of the Web Site or the download of any information from the Web Site. By participating in the Contest, the Entrant releases Sponsor from any and all claims, damages or liabilities arising from or relating to such Entrant’s participation in the Contest. By accepting a prize in the Contest, winner agrees that the Sponsor shall not be liable for any loss or injury resulting from participation in the Contest, or acceptance or use of any prize.  Sponsor is not liable in the event that any portion of the Contest is cancelled due to weather, fire, strike, acts of war or terrorism, or any other condition beyond their control (a “Force Majeure Event”).

9. WINNERS’ LIST/RULES REQUEST: For the names of the Grand Prize Winner, send your request with a self-addressed, stamped envelope to be received by October 15, 2013 to: Jessicurl Name that Gel Promotion (specify Winners List or Official Rules), 5610 West End Road, Suite 101, Arcata, CA 95521.

10. SPONSOR:

Jessicurl, LLC, 5610 West End Road, Suite 101, Arcata CA 95521

Jessicurl, and the Jessicurl Logo are trademarks owned by Jessicurl, LLC. ©2013.

As many of you know, I do a weekly radio show on my local (awesome) station, KHUM. It’s a free-form station not beholden to the likes of Clear Channel or … anyone, actually. The DJs pick what they play and that makes for an amazing variety of tunes.

A few weeks ago I was listening to my buddy Mike, the mid-day DJ (who has won Best DJ in Humboldt County TWO years in a row, BTW) and heard a song with a lyric that literally made me stop what I was doing and look at my phone in amazement. (I stream the station on my phone. I don’t know the last time I owned a “real radio”.)

The line was, “I like the things about me that I once despised.”

!!!!

OMG, right?!

I immediately texted Mike and said, “Uh… what, pray tell, is this song that is so clearly the anthem for curlies EVERYWHERE?!”

Turns out it was Mavis Staples, and it’s a song from her new album. The song is called I Like The Things About Me, and you can listen here:


 

The album was released recently and is called One True Vine. Turns out, the song was written by Mavis’ dad, “Pops” Staples. Learning that made me love it even more, since I’m super close to my dad, and I love that this song and message have been passed down through their family, much like I feel like accepting my curls has been passed down from MY dad.

I don’t mean to imply that YOU have ever despised YOUR curls. I just know that a lot of the curlies I talk to did, and now they don’t. And the freedom of that is not to be understated. The confidence that comes from fully accepting ourselves permeates many aspects of our lives and is why our tagline of You Have The Right To Remain Curly is so powerful.

It’s also why this song is so powerful, in my opinion. Music is not just the background to our lives, filling the silence while we answer email or cook dinner. It gets in our soul and reminds us of how we want to be. Of WHO we want to be. Maybe you’re not there yet. But I believe that songs like this with messages like this have the power to move us forward.

I, for one, DO like the things about me that I once despised.

(My hair anyway. We’ll work on the rest of it later. :) )

I’m stoked that this song can serve as a reminder of that. :)

 

Fair warning, this is going to be a long post. So go grab some tea or a glass of champagne or a bowl of cherries or whatever your thing is.

Ok, ready? Cool. Me too. The reason why this post is long is because the process I’m about to describe is long. :)

People always ask me “What hair color do you use” as if it’s … just that easy. People, people, people, it’s NOT just that easy. :) Not for ME anyway. But I understand that you want to know what I do, so I’m going to tell you, in probably far too great of detail, just what my process is.

Some of you might be like, “Woah woah woah wait, WHAT?! You dye your hair?! But it looks so natural!” Well, first of all, thank you! :) And it looks natural partly because I’m super carful and partly because I have a lot of red in my natural color, and WAS a redhead for a while when I was a baby. :) My natural color is dark blonde with reddish highlights, so going full-on red wasn’t a huge stretch. Here's my high school graduation picture that shows my natural color.

 

Now, I know, ok? I know that EVERYBODY says that color is the one thing you should leave to the pros. But you know what? I had some “pros” REALLY mess up my color one time. So after that, I don’t let anyone else do it. I did have one successful experience at Imago in Richmond, VA last year, where Jessica did my color and it turned out great. If I lived there, I’d for sure just let her do it. But until I can afford to fly her out to do my hair, I’m on my own. :)

 

Here's a picture of me and Jess the day after she did my color. :) See? She did great. :)

 

 

The thing about my hair is that it is EXTREMELY porous. Not sure what the heck that word means? Well, here’s an awesome article allll about it. :)

In a nutshell, what it means is that my hair SOAKS stuff UP. (It also lets stuff out, like, say, moisture.) I need to use lots of conditioner and my hair just sucks it right up. Same goes for hair color. Except, in the case of hair color, it means it will turn out WAY darker than what it says on the box or whatever I’m looking at to determine what shade to use. Basically, if something says “Medium copper blonde” I can expect it to turn out really dark and close to brown on me. Yeah. It’s like that. It never even ends up close to what it says on the swatch. SO frustrating!

The other downside of having porous hair is that color has a tendency not to go on evenly. This is largely because the ends have been around for a while and the roots are more “virgin”, so the ends are way more porous. As such, they suck up a ton more color and can end up darker than the roots if you’re not careful.

Add in the fact that coloring is drying, thus making hair even MORE porous, and this whole process is just a very long and involved one. :) But I love having my red hair, so I deal with it.

Anyway, on to specifics.

 I actually start the process the day before I do the actual color. I wash twice through with Gentle Lather Shampoo to get it really clean, then condition with Deep Conditioning Treatment. After the shower I comb through about a half-teaspoon of Oil Blend For Softer Hair and leave that in overnight. You’re supposed to dye your hair when there is no product in it, but not FRESHLY washed, so that’s why I start the day before. I don’t consider that little bit of oil to be “product”.  Since I apply it to damp hair, it just soaks right in and I see it as a nice little defense ageist the harsh dye that will come the next day.

Now you might be thinking, “But Jess! Don’t you only use the gentlest color made from crushed up berries and twigs?!” Well, no. I don’t. I did used to use Robert Craig, which IS very gentle, but over time I found that my hair was just getting darker and darker (ie: more brown than red) and that was getting annoying. So I switched back to “regular” hair color. Yep, the drying kind that has ammonia. Good thing my products are so gentle and moisturizing, eh? :-)

Anyway, for the last year and a half or so I’ve been using Ion Color Brilliance. I get it online at Amazon since nobody around me carries it. I use about 75% Light Copper Blonde and 25% Intense Red. That combo gives me the exact shade I want. (I’m so picky. :) ) I HAVE tried so many brands and I really like this brand. Red tends to fade the fastest, but this one really lasts. I’ve been super pleased with it.

Ok, remember, like, 37 hours ago how I was saying that if not done carefully, I can end up with two-tone hair due to the porosity? Well, the way around that is to use protein filler. It, quite literally, fills in the gaps/porosity in the hair and allows the hair color to soak in evenly. I cannot overstate HOW MUCH this trick works. I didn’t used to know about it and am embarrassed to say, I do have some old pictures where the ends of my hair were darker than the roots. So yeah. It works.

So, the next day, after doing the wash/condition/oil situation, I wet down my hair, per the instructions on the protein filler, wring it out, and apply about an ounce or two to my damp hair. I comb that through and let it sit for 20 minutes. Then I blow dry my hair so that I can apply my color to dry hair. This makes for more vibrant results, since there’s no remaining liquid in the hair diluting the color.

THEN it’s time to apply the color. JEEZ, right? It’s been forever and a day since the process got started! (So take note, people. Now you know, if I ever say I can’t go do something with you because I have to stay in and dye my hair? YOU KNOW I MEAN IT! :) )

I use a 20% developer and mix it half and half with the hair dye. Usually it’s about 3oz hair dye and 3oz developer, since I have a lot of hair.

I know you’re supposed to apply it at the roots first, let that sit, then do the rest, but meh, I don’t really do that. I do start at the roots, but I have so much hair and it takes so long to get it all evenly distributed, I just apply it all over my head every time. I make sure to comb it through really well, then leave it on for 40 minutes or so.

I wash it out with Hair Cleansing Cream then do a deep treatment with my Deep Conditioning Treatment and the Hair Therapy Wrap.

The heat of the Hair Therapy Wrap opens the cuticle of the hair to let the conditioner in. Some schools of thought would say that doing this would also let the color OUT, but for me personally, that has never been a problem. I decided I need the added moisture. Your mileage may vary.

I leave that on for as long as I have patience for, ideally an hour, but no less than 30 minutes. I rinse that out and finally, FINALLY am done with the whole situation. If I can help it, I do this when I don’t have plans that night so that once I rinse out the DT I can just put some more Oil Blend For Softer Hair in there and leave it overnight to rest. In an ideal world I could just leave it all in a bun or braid the whole next day too. Sometimes I have that kind of flexibility in my schedule and sometimes I don’t.

OMG you guys, now that I’ve typed that all out, it’s a wonder I ever get around to dying my hair at all, eh? :) Yeesh! :) But skipping any of those steps can result in less than stellar results, and I need my hair to be stellar, so I deal with it. :)

Ha ha ha, how’d you like that headline, eh? :) You know I like to joke around so I had to do it. :)

 

But in case you hadn’t heard, yep, it’s true. As I mentioned in my last blog post, four weeks ago RIGHT THIS SECOND, I was having my heart repaired. Now that it’s over and I’m totally fine, I’m willing to provide a few more details about what they did and why, since so many people have been asking.

 

The crazy thing is that they sought to fix two issues during one surgery. Talk about multi tasking, eh? :) And we think we have a hard time replying to email while talking on the phone! :) Ha. :)

 

One of the issues is that my Mitral Valve was really leaky and needed to be repaired, and the other is that I had Atria Fibrillation, which means my heart rate would go super fast and very erratic. I’d had 5 previous procedures over the last 11 years to try to correct the wacky rhythm but none of them worked.

 

Over the past year, both of those issues had gotten worse. Sometimes having the leaky mitral valve can contribute to the atrial fibrillation, and sometimes it doesn’t. The group of cardiologists working on me doesn’t seem to know for sure, but that’s neither here nor there. They both had to get fixed.

 

The TOTALLY SUPER AWEOSME part is that they were able to do this WITHOUT cracking into my sternum. Oh, curlies, you have no idea how thankful I am about THAT! Instead, they did it through 5-6 inch incision directly under my right… um… uh… boob. Ok. I said it. Boob. For some stupid reason I thought it “wouldn’t hurt that much” but I was 100000% wrong. They had to cut through muscle, separate some ribs and, well, cut into my heart, and hell, that’s gonna hurt. So my expectations were rather poorly managed on my part, but STILL. Having my chest bone intact is WAY BETTER, m’kay?

 

The other CRAZY part is, they did this surgery with my heart NOT BEATING. Ahhhhhhhhh, right?! I knew about that going in and I’ll be honest, it FREAKED me OUT. They used the Heart Lung machine to keep blood pumping, but yeah, they stopped my heart to do this thing. I was like, uh…y’all better get that sucker going back up again after! They did, clearly, so all’s well there. (Here, just to prove it to you, here’s a little video I made today JUST to show you that it’s really truly me writing this blog. :-) )

 


 

So they implanted this little device to fix the leak, to put it in very layman’s terms. :) Here’s an example picture.(Note: this is NOT the exact device that I am currently sporting internally. Sorry. :) )

 

 

Here’s the Wikki page on the procedure if you want a more complicated explanation.

 

The other aspect of the surgery was to address the atrial fibrillation. For that they did the Cox Maze procedure where they made a series of little cuts in the atrium to create, for lack of a better term, a “fire wall” of scar tissue. That scar tissue prevents the wacky beats from getting out and creating the atrial fibrillation. As scar tissue can take a while to develop, they can’t declare total success or victory on that part yet, so it can take 3-12 months before they know for sure if that worked. So there’s a wait-and-see aspect to that part but that mitral valve is fixed, NO question.

 

By now you know that my dad and I are super-duper-tight so he came down from Canada for a few days, so that made it ALMOST fun. I mean, almost. :) We’re a pretty funny duo, even (especially?) in the hospital, and it was great to have him here. Here’s a picture of him entertaining me with feigned worries that he couldn’t hear his heart own beat…

 

 

My favorite anecdote from the hospital was when I was still in ICU that first night after surgery. The night nurse came on for the shift change and asked me, “So why did you have this surgery today?” My reply? “Because my heart was f***** up.” Ha. Like, duh right? Why ELSE would I be there? Silly night nurse. :) Luckily he had a good sense of humor. :)

 

After I got discharged that Saturday (surgery was Wednesday) I had to stay in the Bay Area for 2 weeks, in case of complications and to have follow up visits with all the doctors. I can’t tell you HOW STOKED I was to come home finally!

 

Here’s a happy/dorky pic from when I was getting discharged. They give you these heart pillows in the hospital and my friend Kristen made me the “I heart my heart” pin. HOW cool is THAT?! :) My hair was just up in a messy bun because, well, I mean, I was in the hospital, come on. :)

 

 

Now it’s been 4 weeks and I’m realizing – oh, what, you mean I’m not Wonder Woman like everybody keeps saying? :) Ha. Crazy how heart surgery can kick your butt! The pain in my side has gotten SOOO much better though. Even driving is a lot better. (I have a stick shift, so driving it with my right arm was pretty tricky the first few times I tried.) I still get tired way faster than I’m used to but that will keep getting better every day too. Everything is TOTALLY on track and my surgeon called me “text book.” Can’t get better than that! :)

 

My good friends Lynn and Andy drove my car home from the Bay Area for me (THANK YOU again for that, guys!) and a few days later I was emailed THIS adorable video. OMG. I have the best friends, of ALL ages. :) If you want a cute little laugh, watch this video. I’m telling you. :)

 


 

Speaking of Lynn and Andy, and their super awesome kiddos Ava and Morgan, CHECK OUT the World's Biggest Get Well Card they gave me the day before I left for surgery!! :) I love those guys, OMG. :)

 

 

That’s about it. I’m happy to be on the other side and ready to get back to regular life! :)

 

That's a line from one of my favorite songs by The Ryan Montbleau Band, called Grain Of Sand.

The full line goes, "If I want too much from life, my heart will understand. I'm making the most of this great big grain of sand."

Check out a video of the song here, if you so desire.


 

Nice, eh? If you know me at all, you know that sums me up pretty well. I especially vibe with the part about the heart...

Ahem. Yeah. About that. Some of you know, and some of you don't, that I've been around the block a few times when it comes to heart issues.

Over the last  12 years I've had 5 procedures called Ablations to attempt to correct an electrical impulse issue that causes my heart to go super wacky. (Official medical terminology right there, folks.)  Unfortunately none of them worked for more than a year or two.

I also have a leaky Mitral Valve, and, well, they need to fix that. Sooooo, next Wednesday, May 22, I'll be having surgery to fix that valve as well as make further attempts to correct the rhythm issues. Then I can get back to making the most of this great big grain of sand and dancing my ass off like y'all know I love to do so much! :)

I debated about if I wanted to tell you about this, but we decided I should for several reasons. One, is that I know you're used to me being super accessible via email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, smoke signals, telepathy, etc. and I'll be somewhat less accessible for a little while. My doctor sounds like a total ROCKSTAR so I know it'll all go fine. Please don't take any of this as "oohhhh poor me!" m'kay? That’s not my intention at all.  We just figured you needed to know what's going on. Hey, I'm human. I need to get fixed up.  What are ya gonna do, eh?

Things at Jessicurl World HQ will be totally fine! :) Our staff is STELLAR and your products don't need ME around to be made and shipped! :) So don't worry about THAT at all. :)

Am I looking forward to this? Well, uh, no, not particularly. But it has to happen so I'm channeling my inner Merida from Brave and rocking a metaphorical bow and arrow to plow through it. :-)

This has been a really rough week for our country. Doing something nice for someone else can help make you feel better, I promise.

Today I decided to go around and give out Jessicurl trial packs to random curly haired people because being nice is fun! Here’s my little video of it. :) Thanks to Diqui for filming the adventure! :) 

You know I love you, right curlies? I mean it, I do. That’s partly why we created Club Jessicurl, to help you and your friends buy in larger quantities together and save. Lots of you have already created clubs and that makes me super stoked. :) 

It’s also why we send out various offers throughout the month, be it a percentage off, or free shipping or whatever else we cook up at our morning meetings. We want to help you get your hands on what we have to offer! :)

Sometimes, however, you miss the sale. You didn’t get the email. You didn’t need anything when we made the offer, or got the email too late to take advantage of it. You’re understandably disappointed when that happens. You just want something you can COUNT on in this wild and crazy world. :) Like, say, Happy Hour at the bar, or Senior Tuesday at the grocery store. :)

Is that too much to ask?

Nope! :) Not anymore. :)

I’m happy to present to you our newest offering.

We call it Free on 15.

EVERY 15th day of EVERY month, you can use the code FSJCRL15 to get Free Shipping on any order going to any U.S. address at Jessicurl.com. Yep, every 15th day of every month. The code will always be the same, but will only work on the 15th of the month.

This offer can’t be combined with any other offers we may have going at the time but it will always be your choice which you want to use and you can always count on this one. You don’t have to run out of Jessicurl JUST in case we decide to kick down an offer.

See? We heard your requests and we came up with something to address them. That’s what friends are for. :-)

This kicks off on Monday, April 15th. No better day than tax day to get 15% off, eh? :) 

And for you international curlies, you know I love you too.  As we’ve said in the past since your duties and VATs and  SCHMATs and etc. etc. are completely unpredictable, we can’t offer free shipping but we can offer you all 15% off any order going to an address outside the U.S. on the 15th of every month. Just use the code JCRLINT15 to get that deal. How’s that for international relations? :-)

Ok, curlies. If you’ve heard my story, you know that back in Jr. High, there was one kid (who shall remain nameless from now on, m’kay?) who used to stick pencils in the back of my hair during English class. My hair was thick. And big. And poofy. And ‘lil man just HAD to see how many pencils he could get stuck in there before I’d realize what he was up to. He also wanted to see how long they’d stay.

Well, those suckers stayed all day. I mean, alllllll DAY. I’d get home at the end of school and lie down on the couch and it’d be like a lobotomy with those pencils jabbing me in the head. GRRRRRRR, eh? :) As I write this, I get simultaneously mad for 13 year old Jess and totally laugh, because, well, I just said “grrrr, eh?” :-)

Anyway, this is not a pity party, people! This is where we TAKE BACK THE PENCILS! :) As I wrote in my re-cap of my recent trip to Atlanta, I was recently interviewed and photographed for a book about curly hair, called Play With It. During my interview, I cited Pencil-Gate as a contributing factor to the hair obsession that ended up creating Jessicurl. (So, thanks for the pencils, jerk. Now I have a company. Joke’s on you.)

The book is being written by Vaughn Dabney, and every time he shoots someone for it, he gets a shot of them holding his bookmark/business card. Good branding idea, right? Well, given I had just told him during my interview about the pencils, I just KNEW my shot with his card HAD to be this one…. :)

 

This MIGHT just be my favorite picture of my hair, ever, for all the reasons. :) This was taken on my iPhone, but Vaughn got a fancy-shmancy one on his camera.  I love LOVE LOVE that it will be in a book.

The other night, as you know, was St. Patrick’s Day, and though I’m not usually one to celebrate it, (being a McGuinty and all…), I did find myself out and about with some friends. Irish flags were being handed out and, well, you know how this story ends….

 


(I'd like to point out, this hair was AFTER driving around for a few hours with the top down on my car. So don't even tell me you can't have decent hair AND a convertible. I'm here to say you can have both. :) )

So, curlies. Welcome to my new “Thing”. Putting Stuff In My Hair And Taking Pictures Of It Because Now I’M The One In Charge. In charge of what goes in my hair. (Good stuff only.) In charge of how I FEEL about my hair. (I love it.) And in charge of the message I convey to YOU about how YOU feel about YOUR hair. (You Have The Right To Remain Curly. Even if there's stuff stuck in it. :) )

Hi curlies!

  

There's a new club in town and we're pulling back the velvet rope just for you!

 

Welcome to Club Jessicurl! : )

 

 

 


Club Jessicurl is our new buying club designed to help you save money AND SHIPPING COSTS when you place larger orders with your friends. Read all the awesome details here.


I announced the launch of Club Jessicurl last week when I was at Fro Fashion Week in Atlanta. If you want to read about my trip and see TONS of pictures, check out my blog post about it here.


I hope you're having a curly day! :)

 

  

Jess 

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