#AtoZChallenge: A is for Approachable

Easter, baseball, the Final Four, disc golf weather. Clearance Easter candy. Life is good.

The #AtoZChallenge snuck up on me.

Like, big-time. Like heartburn after 1 a.m. hot wings. Like your first gray eyebrow hair. Not that I know anything about that. One minute, I’m searching for Tums, and the next, I’m reading my friend Tamara’s Facebook post about her first post.

Ah, hell.

So, without officially signing up, and without a theme reveal post, and without, really, anything that even smells like a plan, I’m off. Two hours, 15 minutes from Day 2 of the challenge (it’s already tomorrow in Australia, so I’m way behind already.)


I filled in my editorial calendar with stuff I’m working on, to be honest.

I filled in the rest of them with this site. Including today, for A. The word: Approachable. Which made me think immediately of Claire, the woman who helped me avoid the potentially ruinous act of buying brown mascara for my girls’ Easter baskets.

IMG_20180401_092255 (1)

My eyes see (kind of) clearly now

Did you know they also make clear mascara?

And also some that have a spider web on the packages for no apparent reason. Well, maybe it is apparent. It wasn’t to me. And even if my girls did do spider webs in their eyelashes, is an Easter basket – even on April Fool’s Day – the best spot for it to rest?

Enter the approachable cosmetics whisperer.

The world knows her as Claire. She’s actually the patron saint of eye makeup. Turns out some makeup brands are housed in aisle sections no bigger than Kemba Walker’s Hornets locker. Once she showed me the light, I shopped like a champ.

If not for this cosmetical compass – Claire – I might still be there.

Instead, Hayden sat next to me in the car, applying very black mascara like nothing else felt more natural. The kid had no idea. So, Claire, thank you. A dad’s duty to dodge the plum and the clear and the spider web stuff sneaks up on him.

Like, big-time.

[Learn more about the A to Z Challenge here.]

quotes approachability young


  1. Nikki says:

    I have been waiting for this! I guess I’ll start tomorrow 😳

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      It snuck up on you too, huh Nikki? I have to get my B post started and try and catch up!

      1. Nikki says:

        Yes. But I see now I didn’t get a chance to sign up! Maybe next year but I will be checking it out!

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        I’m not officially in, Nikki – just posting (almost) every day and adding my link to the daily list. Oh, and reading five blogs off that list! (I’m behind by at least a day already)

  2. Charlotte says:

    Clear mascara kind of feels like sleeveless turtlenecks to me… I’m not sure I see the point but then again, I rarely ever wear makeup so if it’s going on my face, you better notice it (but not in a “WOW, someone overdid it with the eyeliner” kind of way). Anyway. I always love these posts from you. Thank god for Claire… and for quotes on approachability (LOVE that one).

    Happy happy week to you, my friend!

  3. John Holton says:

    Haven’t really given a whole lot of thought to mascara. Neither Mary nor I use the stuff. But I’m glad you’re playing along, anyway!

  4. mocadeaux says:

    It’s always a good idea to rely on the experts. Claire to the rescue!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I defer to mighty C on that one, Mo. I’d like to think I’ll be able to return the favor to a stranger on the cheese aisle someday.

  5. Lauren Becker says:

    Hah! Thank goodness for Claire. Granted, I AM a female and I still don’t know a ton about makeup. I pretty much stick to black mascara though. 🙂 Good luck with the A to Z challenge.


    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      It was tougher than picking out spark plugs, I tell you Lauren! Through three daughters, not even one of them tried to make up my face. Thanks for the good luck wishes … I’m a day and change behind already!

  6. Kathy G says:

    I’m with Charlotte on the clear mascara. But my eyelashes are so light they’re barely visible, so they need all the help they can get.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Charlotte’s description gave me one of those A-Ha moments, with a capital A. And H. Feels like caffeine-free soda or fat-free ranch dressing. You don’t use the spiderweb stuff, do you, Kath?

      1. Kathy G. says:

        Nope, no spider webs for me.

  7. Approachable cosmetics whisperer – that hands down has to be my favorite phrase of the day. Glad you managed to ace the mascara hurdles, and I’m certainly glad you decided to play in the A-to-Z game.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Deborah, it was both a stretch and divine intervention, that conversion of fate in the name! Glad I didn’t miss this, and that my mascara game is spot on.

  8. ksbeth says:

    wow, what a lucky save! here’s to claire! and go blue!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Right? I didn’t mention to her that early in my daddy days, I didn’t know the difference between a maxi-pad and a tampon. True story! (I’m rooting for your Blue tonight)

  9. Akaleistar says:

    Thank goodness for Claire 🙂

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I sent her the link … it’d be cool if she chimed in. Wouldn’t you like to hear her side of it?

  10. I love clear mascara. And glad to see more parenting bloggers get on to the AtoZ bandwagon. It is a lot of fun.. especially when you can only think of kids toys for X Y Z 🙂
    I am participating too.. do drop by http://mommyingbabyt.com/tag/atoz2018/

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Clear mascara is a new phenomenon to me! I’ve done the AtoZ for a few years, and love the array of bloggers I’m exposed to.

      We have to be particularly creative at the end of the challenge, don’t we? Those letters, the fatigue … haha.

  11. Love this post! I’ve never heard of clear mascara. But as a blond with green eyes, I’ve always bought dark brown mascara whenever I could get it. It’s harder and harder to come by. Eyelash extensions and false eyelashes (even magnetic ones) are big right now. Just so you’ll be ready. LOL

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Thanks, Elen! Clear mascara seems like it would get lost a lot. I wore makeup once, for a play. I don’t remember what it was, but my dad was thrilled that I also got to wear tights!

      My girls have mad lashes, I think. I wonder if they need the magnetic ones. Seems dangerous. What if they get closed??

  12. San says:

    I hadn’t heard of the AtoZ challenge, so you’re way ahead of me.

    And, what’s the point of clear mascara? (Is that some sort of primer?)

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I guess it’s like touch football or gluten-free bread or dinosaurs without sharp teeth, San. You know, mysteries of the universe!

      You should definitely consider the A to Z next year, I think.

  13. Mascara is serious business!! Not all mascaras are created equally! You have to be very particular with what you choose! Waterproof, regular wear and washable. Voluminous, defining, lengthening.. and the list goes on and on! Do not even get me started on colors or the 19 different brushes you can get!! LOL! You are a good daddy! Happy belated Easter Eli! ❤ 🐰

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I’ve found out how serious mascara is, Courtney! I tread with caution. I think I nailed it on my first run, though!

      I asked about magnetic eyelashes yesterday and got the “you will be told on a need-to-know basis, dad!” look.

      Claire advised against the brown so I heeded that. She’s probably off helping some other wandering father. Maybe it’s her calling.

      Happy easter to you too!

  14. Cynthia Lee says:

    i’m sort of thinking about what patron saint I would be … not make up for sure … but maybe tea … and definitely art supplies … and chocolate, of course.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      In any kind of Target worth its red, those things would all be in the same aisle!

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