Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Thanks for Visiting!

(Last updated September 28, 2012)

NEW: My Facebook "shop" is now open!!! A selection of jewelry and hair accessories are now available for purchase and shipment all over the U.S.

If I had hand-picked my ideal job, it wouldn't have been as good as this. I work the majority of the time from home, and when I must go out to conduct business, I have such a fun time! I sell Paparazzi products at home parties. Every piece retails for $5, except for the Starlet Shimmer section that's geared toward younger girls that sells for even less. 

Why I enjoy selling Paparazzi:
  1. I have a jewelry shop in my basement (good and bad news... an outfit never need go unaccessorized)
  2. I put as much time into it as I want to. When I work hard, it pays off. But if it ever needs to take a back burner, I can pick up where I left off when life settles back down. 
  3. Going to work means getting out and spending time with women in their homes with their friends and family for a couple hours. It provides an outlet I don't think I even knew I needed (WE HAVE FUN)!
  4. It li-te-ra-ly sells itself. It's beautiful and it's affordable.
  5. I make 45% commission off jewelry sales. I made back half of what I had put into it in one night. Plus there is the opportunity to make more through the company's compensation plan.  And most of all...
  6. It fits my stay-at-home mom lifestyle

Why women enjoy Paparazzi parties:
  1. They are low pressure. Women who came only to support a friend can get out the door for only $5....
  2. ....But most women are happily surprised to find out when they get there that they have stumbled in on something WONDERFUL... a room full of accessories where not a single one costs more than $5...
  3. ....which is naturally followed by almost zero guilt.... unless they purchase an entire display board worth.
  4. I almost forgot... almost every necklace has a small set of earrings attached. $5. Women LOVE that!

Please contact me to find out more about how it all works. Send me an email and please include your:
  • name
  • state and
  • phone number
I will be in touch with you within 24 hours. I look forward to talking to you!!

Brittney Collado

See Paparazzi's newly launched website here.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Nephi, Blogging, and a Bout with Depression

If you haven't ever met Nephi, I am thrilled that I get the chance to introduce you. Nephi is the first prophet whose story is told in the Book of Mormon, and he is physically and morally strong. He is the youngest of his brothers, but because the oldest two are hard-hearted and generally choose wickedness over what is right, the Lord chooses Nephi to be a ruler over them. The two books of Nephi are filled with stories of Nephi doing one noble and courageous thing after another... and I'm going to tell you about one of them.

Nephi has traveled several days into the wilderness with his family when his father tells him that the Lord has commanded Nephi to return to Jerusalem with his brothers to retrieve the brass plates from Laban. The brass plates contain the records of their ancestors. Nephi's answer is firm and resolute... he will go. After a few attempts at visiting Laban, it becomes very clear that Laban intends to kill Nephi and his brothers and to never hand over the brass plates. On what becomes his final attempt, Nephi approaches Laban's home and finds Laban drunk and collapsed on the ground. The Spirit constrains Nephi to kill Laban, and when Nephi hesitates, he is instructed that "it is better that one man should perish than that an entire nation should dwindle and perish in unbelief..." without the record. Nephi kills Laban, retrieves the plates and grants Laban's servant his freedom if he will join them on their journey to the promised land.

Nephi is righteous and firm and unwavering and inspiring. And as our Sunday School teacher pointed out last Sunday, he is also human, and he grants us a glimpse of that from time to time. The first time the brothers attempted to get the plates from Laban, they cast lots to see which one would go and make the request. The lot fell on Laman, the oldest. He leaves on the errand but returns empty-handed and tells his brothers that he had to flee because Laban threatened to kill him. And then the scriptures say, "...and we began to be exceedingly sorrowful." Reading between the lines, I see a young man trying to do his best. He has just completed a journey of several days through the wilderness back to Jerusalem with a couple of his brothers most likely murmuring most of the way. And when they try to do what they have been sent to do, their lives are threatened. I think for a time Nephi was at a loss for what to do, and I am so thankful he wrote that he was exceedingly sorrowful about it.
Because I want to be like Nephi. And there are times in my life when I am temporarily at a loss for what to do, and during those times I don't feel like I'm being like Nephi... until I saw this side of him. The important thing is to know the end of the story. We know that after his period of sorrow, however long or short it was, he rose to the occasion and with the help of the Lord accomplished with his brothers what they set out to do (read the whole story here).

Every so often I hear debates going on about the "best" way to blog, especially as women. I've read women wishing other women would be more honest and not present their life in such a picture-perfect light on their blog (have you seen this? It's written by a guy in his twenties to poke fun at mommy blogs, and it's stinking hysterical). I've also read the other end of the debate where people have discussed how it's possible to be too honest and share too many complaints regarding how unfairly life is treating you with whoever out there might be listening. I think there's value in both ends of the spectrum. When I see a picture of a beautifully decorated mantel or a spotless kitchen, it inspires me to make my home a more beautiful place. I am guilty of arranging things in a way so that I wouldn't be embarrassed to post a picture of it on the internet. On the other hand, I have been grateful when friends have opened up about a truly horrendous day at their house and how it made them feel, because it makes it easier for me to not take myself too seriously when I am dealing with a similar situation at a later time. What it all comes down to is that if you are blogging regularly, it must be satisfying, and you can blog about whatever you want to, whether you're at either extreme of the spectrum or somewhere in the middle.

I think Nephi (not a blogger, but still a writer) fell somewhere in the middle. He desired to record the events that showed how good the Lord had been to him and his family in the good times and the bad. He is always uplifting and inpsiring and encouraging. But sometimes he opens up and is extremely honest about how certain situations made him feel when appropriate, and that's when you read language like, "O wretched man that I am! Yea, my heart sorroweth because of my flesh...I am encompassed about, because of the temptations and the sins which do so easily beset me" (2 Nephi 4:17-18).

I'd like to fall somewhere in the middle too. When I post something, I feel like I've made a small contribution to the world, and I want to make sure it's positive... so I try to share the very best of me. Somedays the best of me might include how I am coping with the worst of what is going on.

So I think that's why I want to confess to you that I just emerged from an episode with depression. It was the strongest it has been since this point in my life. I'm not even quite sure what caused it. I think my emotions were very close to the surface after experiencing such a wonderful Christmas that it left me open and vulnerable to an emotional crash.  I hid it well. I even had to confess to Danilo that it had happened tonight before I posted this for anyone else to read. I started to recognize it for what it was one night when I realized how excited I was to go to sleep because it would be a temporary escape from reality. If you have never felt the pangs of depression, I expect a statement like that to sound ludicrous to you. After all, I have a loving husband, and a precious daughter, a warm home and food to eat. I truly hope you never know why. Don't be alarmed though. I am armed with tricks and techniques to combat it that I didn't have the first time depression came knocking at my door. While I'm never excited when it rears its ugly head, I am thankful each time it has happened because I become more familiar with what it is and how to better cope the next time. There is a book called Living With a Black Dog: His Name is Depression that I found a lot of comfort in reading during the last stages of my first bout with depression. Anyway, the last page of the book has a picture of the man embracing the black dog. While it can be fearsome and horrific, I too have learned to love what my black dog has done for me in teaching me humility and compassion and a mountain of other lessons I treasure, as well as strengthening my relationship with God and His Son, Jesus Christ.

As I came out of my first episode with depression, which had lasted nine months, I emerged with a passion to extend hope to anyone who found themselves in that condition. If you are there, I want to tell you that I have been where you are, and there is a way out. Even for you.