Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Fourth of July Outfit Ideas

Hey, hey! How is everyone? I hope y'all are doing super well. I'm not sure what happened, today, but I got the itch to do a July 4th outfit inspiration post! When it rains at a little bit of this, it pours! I'm also really excited to share my Colorado adventure with you, soon! I have to weed through 700+ photos so I can show you the most beautiful and fun parts of the trip! Kid free, too! Say what? Now, onto today's topic...
July 4th is just two days away, and although Hurricane Arthur is trying to threaten the east coast's fireworks displays, I think we should get all dressed up in our patriotic best and throw down like it's Independence Day, 2014 style. No hurricane is gonna get between me and a burned hot dog! 

Outfit 1: Short and Sweet
dress & oxford: Old Navy, shoes: Target, bow: self made, bag: Norah's school bag
Outfit 2: A Little Bit Country
tank, flannel shirt, shorts (cut off by me), flip-flops: Old Navy, pearls: my Granny
Outfit 3: Sassy and Flirty
dress and shoes: Target, necklaces: Banana Republic

I'll probably go with some rendition of the last outfit, but probably with flat sandals, because I'm usually the adult who's kicking around a ball with the kids. Guess I should bring some soffe shorts for safety, too. I hope everyone has a fun and safe holiday weekend! What are you planning to wear?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Influenster #TLCVoxBox - Mom on the Go!

Seriously? Influenster loves moms! I LOVE the #TLCVoxBox so much. First of all, anything that includes free gelato is pretty much a win with me. I've used all of the products, so I feel like I have a pretty solid review for each of them! I hope my honest opinions can help you out, especially if you're on the fence about any of the products in this box!

Neosporin Neo To Go! - $4.97 to $7.50
I packed this in my diaper bag as soon as I opened the box. I hadn't even taken it out of the package, yet, but totally thought it was a great product to have with two littles. Last Friday, Norah took a spill on the sidewalk and scraped up her knees pretty badly. I knew I had bandaids, but completely forgot that I had the Neo To Go! I was pleasantly surprised when I opened up my bag and saw that I was awesome and threw this in there. When I cleaned her scrapes, she whined a bit, but as soon as I sprayed the Neosporin on, she said, "All better!" I could barely get the bandaids on before she was ready to fly, again. This is definitely a product I'll purchase when my sample runs out.

Breyers Gelato Indulgences (Coupon for one FREE) - $4.49 to $5.99
I have only tried on flavor of Breyers Gelato Indulgences. The tiramisu is to die for. Coffee and caramel flavors are ribboned throughout, caramel crunchies are on top, and real lady finger cookies line the bottom of the container. Drool. And my favorite thing about gelato is that it's so incredibly rich and creamy that you can't down the entire container in a sitting. It actually lasts about a week in my house, which doesn't happen with ice cream. I feel so fancy eating it and can't wait to try some new flavors!

Ivory Bar Soap: $3.99/10 pack
We've been long-time users of Ivory soap. I've done the cloud science exercise, made homemade laundry detergent, and wash Norah's skin with it (it's great on her eczema). I love the fresh scent and how it leaves our skin and clothes feeling super clean without any leftover residue. I was looking on Pinterest and found some other uses for Ivory, so check out my Ivory Soap pin board, if you're interested. We will always repurchase this product!

AVON Anew Reversalist Express Wrinkle Smoother: $30
I've never really been big into AVON, but my mom has been. I have always been wary to use wrinkle products because my skin is so oily and I always think they'll break my out. This product is creamy, but not oily and I have been using it at night just to see how it works. It's not a night cream, but a cream-to-powder skin perfecter that actually blurs the wrinkles and lines on your face. I definitely haven't tried anything like this and wouldn't have purchased it on my own, but it totally works. And so far, it hasn't broken my skin out, which is good. My only complaint is that it does have a slight light tint to it, although it's supposed to be translucent. With my summer tan, I definitely have to wear a bronzer or foundation over the Anew product so it's not super visible. So far, so good. I'm still up in the air as to whether or not I'd purchase this in the future. 

Puffs To Go: $0.49/single pack
There isn't a whole lot to say about tissues that everyone doesn't already know. They're necessary! Puffs (these are plus lotion) are super soft and the single carry pack is super convenient for purses, diaper bags, and car consoles! Buy them! Also, these little guys are super cute to stick in gifts, care packages, and to buy in bulk to give to your sick buddies when you take chicken soup to them!

Shell Fuel Rewards Network Card: free
From Influenster:
"The Fuel Rewards Network program at Shell is a free loyalty program that helps you save money on fuel. For a limited time, new members save 25 cents per gallon on their second fill up and 3 cents every time after!"
Honestly, I don't ever go to Shell, but I registered the card and filled up once, just because it was close to my daughters' school. Unfortunately, I didn't save money, because it wasn't my second fill up. And 3 cents a gallon isn't really worth going to Shell for me, since I use Sheetz or Hess, which have prices up to 5 cents lower than Shell on a regular basis. If you're a Shell gas buyer, this would be a great product for you.

Products were provided by Influenster for testing and reviewing purposes. All opinions are honest and my own. If you are interested in a detailed photo review of the AVON Anew product, leave a comment and I'll do that next week! Stay tuned for a redesign around these parts!

Norah Noo is Two!

Little Bean, you have enriched our lives so much in the last two years. You are our full-speed-ahead firecracker. Your smile literally radiates to every person you meet and your heart is so big. You kiss, hug, and snuggle your favorite people, look up to your sister, cling to Mommy, and love to play tag and monster with Daddy. You are so incredibly smart and that intelligence has helped you learn to manipulate me into a big pile of mush. You absolutely love animals and use our dogs as pillows. Your favorite words are "Nope," "That's mine," "Pool time!" and "Sadie." Your favorite color is orange, you love your baby dolls, swimming, school, books, the iPad, sandboxes, and running like a banshee through the house. Your favorite foods are spaghetti, watermelon, cucumbers, and strawberries. You won't turn down pizza or yogurt, either. Two years ago, you were born three weeks early, with a head full of black hair. You have grown and changed so much and we fall more deeply in love with you each day.
Here's that infectious little smile:
We celebrated your birthday on Saturday, June 14 with a picnic and playground play date. Friends and family joined us to watch you turn a year older and you had a blast, climbing the play structure, bouncing in the moon bounce, swinging with Daddy and JoJo, and snuggling Gigi, Pop, Uncle Ryan, and Grandma. Granddaddy came to celebrate Father's Day on Saturday night and you gave him some big hugs, too. You give love so freely to your closest people and we embrace that light so much. Today, we celebrated your birthday at school with brownies and a sing-a-long book. You looked absolutely gorgeous and I could tell that your friends and teachers just adore you. Happy 2nd birthday, Nooveroonies. You are loved more than you'll ever be able to understand.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Black Hole

Before I preface this post with saying, "I've been so busy. Blah, blah, blah," I just want to ask if y'all think I should continue here or start a new blog, altogether. My focus has shifted, so drastically, from personal style to ... whatever it is that I want to say about whatever it is I want to talk about. Do I keep using this space? Do I start over with a new blog name and look? I think I stay, but make the changes here, right?

I won't be surprised if there's radio silence.
I'd also like any little bit of input I can get. I want my blog to be about my family, my kids, Jesus, me, clothes, food, home projects... literally, whatever my little heart desires. I'm going to be sorry I didn't write all of it down! I'd better get crackin'!

So, start anew? Or keep moving forward right here?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Spring (So Far) Photo Dump

I know I've been away for a long time. I've told myself, time and time again, that this is just going to have to be what it is until I figure out how to manage all.the.things. Clearly, I haven't figured it out, yet. When you have a recipe for success in being Superwoman, please let me know. Thanks! For now, I'll just update y'all on a few of the goings on during the spring season.

I got my nails done. Twice. I can hardly believe I carved out time to do something nice for myself. Looking back, that first one was really ugly and badly done. Second time around, I asked for much shorter nails and opted for a punchy hue (Cajun Shrimp by OPI- one of my summer go-tos) and a simple gold fleck accent nail.
Three generations of manicures: My mom, Sadie, and I went to get our nails done the day before Easter. I stepped to the restroom while S was giving her manicurist instructions. Had I been beside her, I would've suggested that she not make the middle finger her accent nail. But, she's five, and she knows what she wants.
A few weeks ago, I was really sick. REALLY sick. The girls enjoyed several days of movies and snacks. I think this was day 2 or 3 and they are clearly in the zone.
 Said sickness:
This mommy is a sucker for matching or coordinating outfits. The girls donned matching bicycle shirts, sneakers, and flared jeans from Carters, c/o of Gigi and Pop (my parents). They'll only let me do this for so long, so I'm just going to eat it up until Sadie realizes what's going on and doesn't think it's cute, anymore.
 On a rainy day, I took the girls to a new pet store in town (Sweet Pets). I just wanted something to do and I heard there were bunnies and a chinchilla that they could pet. We walked away with Finn, the beta... And a bamboo plant that cost more than him.
 Whilst in the throws of hemming many, many pairs of pants and dresses that have been hanging, useless, in my closet for months, I decided to take a nod from my friend, Jackie, and cut up one of hubster's shirts. I made this adorable shirt dress for Sadie and added a light blue ribbon belt to match the AE bird and pinstripe.
 My MIL visited two weeks ago and, on the way to the park, Norah passed out in the carseat. While Grandma took Sadie to play, I took a selfie to show off my new foundation and eye makeup. 
Note: The eye makeup has been worn almost every single day since I purchased it. It's a miracle worker. The foundation was worn for one day, and one day only. Just didn't feel like me.
Cheap, magical drugstore makeup:
During the spring and summer, I make easy refrigerator pickles approximately twice a week. I'm obsessed. They're simple, delicious, healthy, and taste very similar to the Claussen refrigerated pickles from the grocery store. Mmm. Let me know if you're interested in my recipe!
 I've been cooking a lot of things from scratch, lately. Sadie randomly decided, after five years of really good eating, that she only likes macaroni and cheese and pizza. So, naturally, we stopped having those things once a week (we had mac and cheese for the kids once a week and pizza nights on Friday). We aren't going to ban them, completely, but we needed to make a change. Here is my combination of a soup starter. This batch ended up as chicken noodle with homemade bone broth. Delicious.
Sadie rediscovered this stuffed elephant, from Aunt Whitney, that has literally been around since before she was born. She named it "Clovey," and it comes everywhere with her. She has a special basket in the car, it wears a leash when we go for walks (she sort of drags it, but keeps it above the ground... weird), and she has a special pillow and blanket for it in her bed.
 Meanwhile, Norah became a mother to twins. She's really into baby dolls, and for some reason, these $5 Circo brand dolls from Target are some of her favorites. I think it's that the size is so easy for her to work with. So easy, in fact, that she can easily manage two.
For Easter weekend, Gigi and Pop brought Peeps Dunkin Donuts for each of the girls. Norah, very clearly, enjoyed hers. It was super adorable.
 Sadie was just like, "Whatev. Donuts are cool, I guess."
Yesterday, while I was doing 8 million (5) loads of laundry, and cleaning up after our Easter weekend (7 people, 4 dogs, a gerbil, and a fish in our 1500 sq. foot house), the littles enjoyed another movie and cheddar penguins in their jammies.
We adopted the school gerbil for Spring Break. Here's Sadie talking to him about his cleaned out cage and how he was building a new little bed for himself. I love seeing her interact with animals - even if they're rodents.
I'm sorry to go missing for such long stretches, and I certainly can't promise when I'll be able to post, again. My kids are probably tearing the house apart, as I type this. If you're interested in daily photos/antics. follow me on Instagram and/or Twitter!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Matthew 6:21

This is one of my life verses. It's been resonating with me over and over, lately. So true. We have to place our treasures with Jesus so He knows our heart is with Him. I don't think I'll ever stop being in awe of what He did for me and I don't think I'll ever stop showing Him how much love I have for Him.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Hey, Babydoll

Does someone ever give you clothes that you have no idea how to style? This babydoll zip-up is one of those items. But it's soooo cozy and warm. I had my little polka-dot top peeking out of the bottom, but the day's events rendered that unidentifiable.I don't really have a whole lot of interesting things to say about my outfit, except that it's a far cry from yesterday's post! I will, however, say that my John Frieda 3-Days-Straight flat iron spray is the bomb diggity. Is that how you spell "diggity?" 
babydoll zip-up: Barbara Lesser Fibers, top: Motherhood, leggings: Old Navy, boots: Diba
How would you style this zippy thing? I don't think I can get away from it looking like a babydoll dress that shrunk in the wash, can I? It might need to be left in the drawers for keeping cozy around the house. Good thing all the preschoolers noticed was that I was wearing eyeshadow.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Bitter Root Vintage Review: Audrey in Bloom Dress

About two weeks ago, I was contacted by Bitter Root Vintage and they asked if I'd be interested in reviewing one of their new dresses. Of course, I said that I'd love to. I had a choice between three dresses and while the other two were gorgeous, I couldn't resist this breathtaking pastel floral pattern against the navy background. This dress, my friends, is the Audrey in Bloom. I opted for a cardigan because, well, it was freezing. And I don't like my upper arms, but who's paying attention? I absolutely love the high neckline, natural waist, and full skirt. Bitter Root was kind enough to send over a petticoat for me to try with the dress so I could give y'all the full effect. No pun intended. Ok, I totally intended on that. 
 Audrey in Bloom dress/belt, petticoat: Bitter Root Vintage, cardigan: New York & Company, shoes: gifted/Payless
If you follow your measurements for this dress, it will It's such a pain to online shop and have your items arrive all ill-fitting. I'm a tough girl to fit and my contact, Lauren, at Bitter Root, was so knowledgable about helping me choose the perfect size. If you love this style, but aren't into all the flower power, Bitter Root also stocks the Audrey in Midnight and Ivory. You can also pre-order 10 different colors of the Audrey (Turquoise with red accents is on the site, now)! The dress was beautiful without the petticoat, too. I'd be more apt to wear it that way, to be honest. But, who doesn't want to play dress up with crinoline? I had so much fun! I think this would be such an awesome dress to wear to a spring wedding.
All truth be told, this dress completely stole my heart. But, my Old Navy-shopping self couldn't get past the price tag. Audrey in Bloom is $112 and worth every penny, in my opinion. However, my budget doesn't allow for such glamorous things. Even with the blogger discount, I will still be sending this insanely gorgeous piece of artwork back, because I'm scared to hurt something that's worth so much! My lifestyle lends itself to lots of spaghetti sauce, glue, watercolor paints, bleach, and... you get it. I couldn't bare to own this dress and have it sit in the closet, while my yoga pants and I get down and dirty with the magic eraser. You, however, should probably give it a test run! If I could bite the bullet, it'd be mine. The solid colors are under the $100 price point, which is less of a blow to the wallet.
Big thanks to Bitter Root Vintage and Lauren for being so amazing to work with! I absolutely love this dress and I know everyone who gets to place it in their closet will have nothing but great things to say!

*The Audrey in Bloom dress,/belt and petticoat were provided to me, temporarily, for review, from Bitter Root Vintage. All opinions are my own. I fully tested all products before reviewing.
**Big thanks to Alida, of Alida Makes, for taking these beautiful photos.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Influenster J'Adore VoxBox Review

In order of review:
Boots Botanics Shine Away Ionic Clay Mask
John Frieda Frizz Ease 3 Days Straight Flat Iron Spray
KISS Looks So Natural Lashes
Red Rose Simply Indulgent Tea (Creme Caramel and Lemon Chiffon/Decaf)
Hershey's Kisses Milk Chocolates
I haven't gotten the hubster to try out the Vaseline Men's Spray Lotion... yet!

Boots Botanics Shine Away Ionic Clay Mask $9.39
Y'all, I have the most finicky skin in the world. It's so combination and I get wrinkles, dry patches, breakouts, and oil slicks all on one plane. It's pretty horrible. I use Clinique's Emergency Mask when I feel I need an extra kick, but it's a bit too harsh and dries my dry spots out a lot. The Boots mask made my skin feel so smooth, pulled the oil, but didn't over dry, and was super easy to wipe off! I hate a mask that you need to chip off of your face. I loved this and the price is definitely right. You can purchase Boots products at Target, so this is on my list when mine runs out.

Frizz Ease 3-Day Straight Flat Iron Spray $9.99
Love another fairly priced product! I don't know about you, but I do some sort of heat damage to my hair every day. I try not to wash but every 2-3, but I do have to re-flat iron or curl my style. This stuff is magical. The top left is before I ironed my hair. The bottom left is right after I ironed it. On the right, you'll see my non-frizzed, very straight ends on DAY 3. My roots are definitely more oily than I like and my favorite dry shampoo just ran out. But this product did exactly what it said. Smooth, straight, frizz-free hair after three days. Well done, John Frieda. I'll purchase this, too.

KISS Looks So Natural Lashes: $3.99
Hello, affordable! I'm not really ever in the market for false lashes. Let's be honest. My lifestyle doesn't really lend itself to the dramatic look they acheive. These, however, are very lightweight and easy to apply. Don't watch my Instavideo or you won't believe me. The second time went way better than the first. I took a video the first time and photos the second. I'm tricky like that. What a seriously huge difference these make, though. My eyes look pretty fantastic in the after photo, yes? Don't lie. You love them. Now, get me a date at a swanky restaurant and a super fly LBD, I might have an epic reason to dazzle out my eyelashes. These are awesome for what they are, but I won't purchase another set.

Red Rose Simply Indulgent Teas: $4.49/20
I'm not going to lie. I'm a coffee drinker. I'm actually taking a break from caffeine right now and had a nice mug of the Creme Caramel flavor right before I went off. It. Was. Delicious. No sweetener or milk needed. The tea was like drinking a creamy, thick, sweet dessert. I had it pretty piping hot and cuddled myself up in my reading chair with a blankie and my bible app. Good stuff. I gave the Lemon Chiffon to my oldest daughter since it was decaf and she loves warm tea on cool days. I didn't even taste it, but the smell reminded me of my Lemon Cheesecake candle and she kept raving about how yummy it was. 3 cheers for Red Rose teas! I'll repurchase because there were $1.00 coupons included and I loved the Creme Caramel. Perhaps, I'll get some Lemon Chiffon for Sadie, too.

Hershey's Kisses Milk Chocolates (Family Size Bag): $5.29
Thanks, Influenster, for feeding the frenzy. My kids are on such a candy kick in the aftermath of Valentine's Day. I love that Kisses are the perfect size for a sweet indulgence, but they aren't overboard to give the littles one a day in their lunches. I plan on trying those little mini kiss pies out, too. Do I need to review these, really? I mean, duh. YUM.

Vaseline Men Spray Lotion: $7.99/5oz
Like I said, above, I haven't gotten hubs to try this out, yet. I did, though, and the consistency is amazing. It comes out in a really fine spray, but has the Vaseline thickness. It helped my dry elbows out, but didn't really touch the dryness of my knees. Years of sun damage and scrubbing floors hasn't been nice to them and they're all calloused up. I honestly haven't found anything that keeps them moisturized overnight. I'll be putting the man's review up on Instagram.

All products were provided to me for review by Influenster. Opinions are honest and my own. I tested each product before writing this review.