Thursday, July 31, 2014

Weight Watchers Update


I will attempt to not be long-winded.

I started weight watchers on July 2nd, it is now July 31, and I have lost 5.2 lbs. Never have I felt hungry or seriously deprived of the foods I wanted to eat. Yes, I did see a cupcake in the window of a bakery yesterday and may have drooled a little onto my shirt while telling myself that I can't have it, but I had just had a delicious wrap from a cute sandwich shop and was actually quite full. I just happen to have a sweet tooth. 

After the initial 3.2 lb loss from the first week, I survived two very tempting weekends. One weekend I spent at a wedding and then out on the town with a few of my girlfriends. Let's just say the wedding had really yummy food that I was not about to pass up. I tried to be good with my portions, but yes...I ate from the mashed potato bar AND the pasta bar AND I had a piece of cake. And I'm not sorry.




That week I worked out a lot and was very good with my meals so I still lost 1 lb come weigh-in time.

This past weekend I was at the beach for a bachelorette party from Thursday - Sunday. You can imagine how tough it was to stay on course. During the days it was actually simple because we were laying around on the sand or going for long walks to the pier so I was able to just snack on grapes or pineapple.





The evenings when we went out to dinner, followed up by multiple drinks was where I got nervous.  I still ate really delicious food (chicken and waffles...a burrito), but tried to limit the amount and types of drinks I was consuming. For instance, I ended up going with vodka-water-lime instead of indulging the whole night in more sugary options.  Combine this with limited sleep (why is it impossible to sleep past 8:00 when you're at the beach?!) and my uhhhh...girly time...deciding to make a visit, and I just knew that the scale wasn't going to be my friend when I got home.



Out of curiosity, I weighed myself the morning after I got home. I FREAKED when I saw that the number had jumped about 3lbs. My official weigh-in day was still two days away, so I had time for some damage control. I also kept reminding myself that I was very exhausted and my monthly visitor probably meant there was a lot of excess water pooling around my organs like a poorly-drained side street.

I worked out on Monday and then REALLY hard on Tuesday (thanks trainer-fiance for kicking my butt!), and was pleasantly surprised when my scale on Wednesday morning said I had actually lost a pound from the previous week. Our bodies are funny that way.

So there we have it. 5.2 lbs down and I am now at the weight I was at when I STARTED weight watchers last year. 

This next week may be interesting because I can't work out for a few days until my laser treatment on my back tattoo (that's a story for another blog post) heals and I don't have to be bandaged up.

Let's keep on keepin' on!
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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Journey of the Official Bridal Makeup Look


I've been waiting for this for a long time, folks. My absolute favorite beauty YouTuber, Jaclyn Hill, finally put out a bridal makeup tutorial. Apparently I haven't been the only one requesting such a video for a long long time now. 

The girl is a genius and her knack for finding the perfect shadow combinations never ceases to amaze me. This is no exception. I don't know how she does it. 

Anyways, lately I've been trying to figure out what look I am going to do for the big day. Now, we've got 268 days to go, but since I'll be doing my own makeup, I wanted to figure this out early to allow myself time to perfect the technique so I'm not spending 2 hours on my face the day of. 

I had found a few looks that I quite enjoyed and even thought I had found THE ONE, but when T came home later that night, the first words out of his mouth were "why do you have so much stuff on your face? You look like one of those jersey girls"... apparently he isn't a fan of the smokey eye.


Back to the drawing board. 

While I was in Ohio recently, my cousin and I were playing around trying to go in a different direction, and we decided on the look below. Now, I need to work on my blending a little, but I thought this was a very solid option. But something told me I could do better.


Enter Jaclyn Hill's impeccable timing. Her tutorial was PERFECT, and although I had to substitute a few shadows to match what I had in my own collection, the final look turned out exactly how I wanted it. 





And of course I had to have a little fun since I was feeling quite beautiful (which is a good sign, right??), so I got a little creative...



If you're interested in learning this look, click HERE to go to Jaclyn's video tutorial. Again, I had to substitute two or three shadows because I didn't have a few in my collection, so feel free to do the same! I also started out with the Rosy Outlook blush, but went over it with Mac's blush in Melba because I prefer a slightly peachier look to my cheeks.

My lipstick is in the shade Fig by Bite Beauty, and over it I am wearing their lipgloss in the shade Rambutan.
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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

And Here We Are Again...


If you've been around the blog for awhile, first of all, thank you. Secondly, you may remember last year about this time I had just finished up my first experience with Weight Watchers. I lost a maximum of 15lbs, keeping steady more around -12lbs. I was so proud of myself because that's the most weight I've ever lost. 

12lbs may not seem like a lot to many of you, but as someone who doesn't have much to lose in the first place, that number was huge for me and really made my body look so much better. Couple that with the fact that food is probably my favorite thing in life, tied in a dead heat with sleeping, and you can see why I shared that number with pride.



The main excuse reason I stopped WW is because I moved to Atlanta and got a job where I travel in my car ALL.DAY.LONG. It was extremely difficult to eat healthy with no fridge or microwave, especially when the first two months I was training with someone else. I didn't want to be a crutch who dictated where we ate based on my diet. So I quit. And then I spiraled right back to the starting line, taking empty McDonalds containers in my hand with me. Don't get me wrong, the constant Chick-Fil-A (drool) and Moe's Mondays were absolutely delectable, but it didn't take long for the unhealthy lifestyle to catch up with me. Let's be real, there was no exercise going on.

Let's fast forward to today. I'm now engaged and currently 285 days away from strutting my ass down the aisle in a SERIOUSLY BEAUTIFUL dress with all eyes on me. Sure, I should probably think that the only eyes that matter are that of my loving and hunky man at the end of the aisle, but I don't think that...because I'm a human, and I'm the girl-variety of a human at that. EVERY female wants the whole world to think she's stunning on her wedding day. While my dress is pretty, I know that being in my best shape would make it look WOW!



One more note: T and I have been in serious discussions about trying to have children right after we get married. If we're blessed enough to make this happen so soon, I want to be in the best shape possible to prepare for all of those crazy changes.

I've recently gotten into a pretty constant, yet not quite intense enough, workout schedule. I joined a really amazing athletic club, started taking tennis lessons, and began going to work out at 5 a.m. with my fiance. There have been a lot of squats and dead lifts, so I can feel all of my muscles getting stronger, but there hasn't been enough cardio to put all that work on display...because I hate cardio almost at much as I hate pickles...which is a LOT. I also know that if I don't get my eating habits back under control, there will never be any real, visible change.



So here we go again. I signed back up for Weight Watchers this morning and weighed in at my official heaviest weight ever. Four lbs more than my starting point last year, and it's not okay. Yes, I have more muscle at this point, but no excuses. 

I have 285 days to reach my goal...which would ultimately be between 15 and 20lbs lost. Progress will be documented and shared!

Let's get to work.  

Currently eating:
Chia seed pudding: 1/4 cup chia seeds, 2/3 cup reduced sugar vanilla almond milk, dash of honey. Mix and put in fridge for chia seeds to puff up and make a pudding consistency
Coffee with 1 packet of Truvia and 1 Tbsp fat free hazelnut creamer


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Friday, April 18, 2014

How I Found the Gown


(I apologize in advance that this post will not include pictures for surprise purposes)

The worst is over!

I managed to find my wedding dress without a single meltdown or tear shed. Phew! I can't tell y'all how nervous and anxious I was for this experience. I am very hard on myself when it comes to trying on clothes, and I knew finding "the dress" for my one big day was going to be a huge feat. 

To my delightful surprise, the entire dress hunt was easy and relaxing. I had 3 appointments set and 5 trusted advisers in tow, but ended up only going to the first store. I knew the first store was going to be a good one when the last note of Defying Gravity blared out of my car speakers (and our mouths) at the precise moment I pulled into the parking spot. It was meant to be. (long story of myself and best friends' obnoxious obsession with the song during high school)

The first stop of the day was Treasures Formals and Bridal in Roswell. I loved that I was the only bride in the store, so the focus was all on me...I AM a princess after all ;)

My consultant was very nice, and I started by showing her a few pictures of what I wanted, let her know my budget, and also told her that I wanted the first few dresses to be different silhouettes since I had no idea what I looked good in, though I really wanted a ballgown. 

TIP 1: Keep your mind open. Go in knowing what you're drawn to, but try on every style until you narrow down what compliments your shape the best. A.K.A. "Don't knock it till ya try it"

Then, she pulled a few dresses while my entourage got to work doing the same. I actually didn't get to pick out any myself because I was being asked my thoughts on all the ones they were finding. I didn't mind actually because they pretty much did the work for me. The selection wasn't that big, so I didn't feel like I had missed anything. 

Now it was time to work. Mom cried with the very first dress, because it was the first time she has seen her only baby girl in a wedding gown. Through the process, we decided that mermaid was NOT it because I couldn't move. Seriously...I don't know how women do it. 

I tried probably 8 or 9 dresses, and it came down to 2 very opposite silhouettes. Without going into too much detail (and still keeping the surprise for the big day), the fabric was complete opposite of what I wanted going in. My aunt and bridesmaid picked them, and I should have known. The ladies have impeccable taste. 

One dress was a ballgown...with pockets. POCKETS, PEOPLE! I had always wanted a ballgown because it's the one time in your life that you can wear one and get away with it, and it truly has that "I'M A BRIDE" look. The second dress was similar in the feel of it, but it was more of a trumpet style. It made me look very tall and thin. Two majorly favorable attributes.

I tried them both on a second time, but this time with a veil. Cue mom crying again. I asked them one by one which they preferred and the majority agreed a certain one.

TIP 2: Pick your entourage very carefully. I had 5 people, but I knew each one would accept how I wanted to feel on the day of the wedding and be honest with their opinions based on that. They would not push their own agenda or ideas, but help me to perfect my own. 

It was a serious toss up.  I had my ladies stand on the other side of the room and I walked towards them (which was difficult because both were so dang long on my short Scottish legs). With one of the dresses, my bridesmaid/brother's girlfriend said "I just got the shivers!" and then started to cry. And she is NOT a cryer. That's when I knew. 

Personally, I didn't cry. I knew I wouldn't. I just don't cry at happy things...I squeal and smile and get super excited. But her reaction solidified the decision for me. I cancelled my other two appointments and said THIS IS IT! 

TIP 3: Once you've found one you love...stop looking. Just stop and get excited that you have accomplished a huge feat and found your wedding dress.

The best part of the whole thing? The dress was about 1/5 of my budget. YES! 1/5!!!!!  We purchased my veil as well and later went on to get my shoes the same day. All three items together came to 1/3 of the budget I set aside for the dress alone. You just can't ask for anything more than that!
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Friday, April 4, 2014

Lupita for Lancome

Lupita

I'm not sure if I have mentioned this on the blog before, but I absolutely adore Lupita Nyong'o. The woman, in my eyes, is perfection. The ideal combination of beauty, brains, confidence, humility and grace. 

Today the news was released that Lupita is the new brand ambassadress (I just learned that is an actual word) to Lancome cosmetics. I actually woke up to the news this morning, as I follow her like a stalker fan girl on Instagram.  In a statement the company released, Lupita said:

"I am truly honored to join the Maison Lancome, a brand with such a prestigious history that I have always loved.  I am particularly proud to represent its unique vision for women and the idea that beauty should not be dictated, but should instead be an expression of a woman's freedom to be herself."

I mean come on. How perfect is that? And I agree wholeheartedly. 



I will admit that I don't believe I have ever tried a Lancome product. I think I see it as a line for more mature women, but I find that Lupita's sophisticated personality fits beautifully with the similar sophistication the brand exudes. 

Lupita joins a long list of some of my favorite celebrity woman as ambassadresses (wow), including Julia Roberts (my favorite), Kate Winslet, Penelope Cruz and Lilly Collins.

fashion fashion fashion? O.o O.o O.o gimme those clothes! www.gimmethoseclothes.tumblr.com i follow the tag #gimmethoseclothes
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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Full Face under $45 - Drugstore Makeup



It's not a secret that I'm obsessed with makeup, and when you can find amazing budget-friendly products at the drugstore, it's like WAH-BAM!  LIFE IS AWESOME!

So since I know that not everyone wants to devote a portion of their life earnings to their makeup collection like I do, I thought I'd quickly showcase a few of my more cost-effective favorites. Below I am laying out a FULL face of makeup for you for UNDER $45! And everything can be found at your local drugstore...you can thank me later. (side note: prices listed were from sites like drugstore.com, walgreens.com and cvs.com...prices will vary based on your location).

FOUNDATION: Covergirl 3 in 1 - $9.47
This is a great coverage foundation that doesn't come off heavy on your skin. I also find that it lasts a long time and comes in a wide variety of shades. PLUS it has a pump...which is an instant +10 points on my scale.

UNDER EYE BRIGHTENER/CONCEALER - Maybelline Dream Lumi Touch - $6.44
Because I have awful dark circles, I use this one on TOP of my corrector, but I think for most people it would provide enough coverage for solo use. It is creamy and I really love how it blends out. I prefer to use it in the shade Radiant which is slightly salmon (helps with the circles) and the lighter shade just brightens everything up. Apply in a V shape under the eyes.

POWDER: Rimmel Stay Matte - $3.97
This powder helps make your foundation and concealer stay in place, and I don't find that it causes that overly-powdery look that so many of us fear. It's also great for those with oilier complexions who need the help of a powder to keep the shine at bay.

BRONZER: NYC Sunny - $2.79
Yep. NYC. I was just as surprised as you are! The color is not too orange and not too muddy. It is great for summer to warm up the skin!

BLUSH: Wet N Wild Blush - $2.99
Wet N Wild is one of the biggest surprises when it comes to great drugstore brands. Their blushes are SO pigmented (use sparingly!) and the colors are gorgeous. I've been wearing Pearlescent Pink for about a month straight.

MASCARA: Covergirl Clump Crusher - $6.30
The name does not lie. You will NOT get clumpy lashes with this mascara! I use the waterproof formula, and it gives a beautiful, natural look to your lashes. Obsessed. 

EYESHADOW: Wet N Wild - Comfort Zone - $4.68
Get insanely gorgeous pigmentation in 8 shades with this palette. They are the star of the Wet N Wild line, in my opinion. The Comfort Zone palette is my favorite for the more neutral shades. There are quite a few MAC dupes in this collection as well.

LIPS: Maybelline Color Whisper - $4.97
I really enjoy these because not only are the shades beautiful (Rose of Attraction is my favorite), but they are super moisturizing and has build-able color.

EYELINER: Jordana Fabuliner - $2.99
For an easy liquid application, this is the liner for you. The felt tip makes it easy to control and it applies very evenly. Plus, you just can't beat the price. Keep in mind these are NOT waterproof.

TOTAL: $44.60

**Things I haven't included (because I don't have a drugstore fav) that I think are important
EYEBROWS!!! Please please please don't neglect to groom and fill in your brows. It completely transforms your face and instantly makes you look put together. Brows are the dark horse of the face.

PRIMER: Face primer, eye primer...they're both amazing and important if you want your makeup to last. 

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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Couch-to-5k Update, Week 1


Well, we have made it through Week 1. Of course, I've made it through week 1 at least 5 times in the past and have yet to actually complete a 5k...but I digress.

Week 1 has come and gone. I am trying to complete this a bit faster than the app suggests, and I am not resting in between days. I'll take a rest in between WEEKS, though. These 3 workouts were no big deal, and I flew through them. The regimen included 1 minute of jogging followed by 1 1/2 minutes of brisk walking for a total of about 20 minutes (not including the 5 minute warm up and cool down walks).

I am looking forward to next week and progressively tackling tougher intervals. I had plenty of energy left over to do some more workouts after my jog, so I have been doing either the elliptical, spin bike or TRX training as well. 

I have decided to try to capture at least one photo of my daily workout, or post-workout if there are other people in the gym. This way I can document the progress...basically this was my mom's request.

Day 1: I forgot how badly this hurts one's behind (sorry for the poor quality. I was in motion!)

Day 2: Again with the bike...

Day 3: Recovering with a nice rock on the porch


And just because it is pretty and looks extra huge in this picture...my pretty ring :)


I have been focusing a lot on cardio recently, while still not forgetting some of my toning exercises, because in my arms (which in my mind, are much too large), you can feel the muscle really developing,  however the fat on top is still there which is preventing the muscle from being seen. And actually, gaining more muscle without losing the fat is just  making them LARGER, so I have been upping the cardio to try to burn it off. 

Yes, I know I cannot just spot treat the fat on my arms, but eventually with enough cardio, the arm flab will decrease along with the fat on the rest of my body. (And just to be clear, when I say this, I don't mean that I'M FAT, I mean like the literal fat...as in the anatomical meaning).

ONE MONTH FROM TOMORROW IS WEDDING DRESS SHOPPING! Leh'go!

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Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Dress Will Do It




If you've been around my blog for awhile, you may remember when it was all about health and fitness. Last year I was in this huge health kick and I lost about 15 pounds. I was just in a really good place with my fitness. At one point I was doing a boot camp and keeping up with a food journal, and then at another point I was doing weight watchers. I had great experiences with all of them. However, I moved to Atlanta and took a job that requires me to be in the car all day long, so eating healthy became VERY difficult and quite frankly, I got lazy.

Throwback to my old progress photo (May 2012 on Left and May 2013 on R)

Fast foward to today where I've gained back those 15 pounds (I may have gained more. I'm not really sure as I refuse to actually weigh myself) and I am noticing my waist starting to go away. After trying to get myself to work out for the past few months and failing miserably, I had one moment recently that really woke me up and said, OKAY MICHELLE...YOU MUST START NOW!

This past week I went with a friend of mine to pick up her bridesmaids dress for a wedding she is MOH in. While we were there, I couldn't help but "accidentally" end up in the bridal gown section. I went there with intentions to strictly look and drool and dream about when they'll finally be on my body in just over 1 month. However, through some innocent prodding from my friend, I ended up trying one on. It was this gown that I had actually just pinned the night before...


I was so excited because this was the first gown I've ever tried on and I love how princessy it is and full. Unfortunately, on my small 5'4" frame, you would have never known it was the same dress. It was hideous and made me look like a wide, boxy ball of fluff. I had no waist, I felt like the beading made me look HUGE on top and my arms (to me) were the side of my thighs. 

I took it off and BAM! That was it. I said to myself "Michelle...it is time." I know myself very well and if I feel wide or big when I am trying on the first few dresses, I will end up getting very frustrated and probably crying into a swatch of chiffon in a dressing room. It's just how I am. 

I only have until April 12th to do this, and I know that I cannot (in a healthy way) achieve my desired results in that short of a time frame, so I have made a goal to be able to run 2 miles consistently by the day we go dress shopping. I will be using the Couch to 5k app and if I run every other day, I'll be at that goal. In addition, I will also be working on my portion control. I LOVE food and don't like the whole "diet" concept, so I am going to cut back on my portions to help.

I'll update everyone with my progress!




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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Makeup for Middle Schoolers


Next April, I will not only be a wife, but I will officially be acquiring two nieces, although they've long since been calling me "Aunt Michelle" (which melts my hearts every time, by the way. YES I WILL GIVE YOU ALL THE CANDY IN THE WORLD!).

The eldest, Isabel, will be entering middle school shortly and already loves everything girly. Her parents, as is expected, are hesitant to let her start wearing makeup. She is only allowed to wear certain products and they must receive approval prior to public wear.

So I decided to put together my suggestions for an appropriate middle school makeup kit.


  • Middle school is when those pesky hormones start raging and many kids experience their first acne breakouts. They're not fun and can really make girls AND boys feel very self-concise. A good concealer is key. I suggest the Maybelline Fit Me concealer
    • Remember that finding your perfect shade, especially when you first start to wear makeup, can be tough, so don't forget you can always RETURN your makeup (with light wear and a receipt) to the drugstore/ulta/target/etc...
  • A good cream blush will give a nice dewy flush to the cheeks while maintaining a more natural appearance than a powder. Also, no brush is needed, as this can easily be blended in with fingers.  
    • A truly great product is the Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush, and my favorite natural shade is "Peach Satin."
  • Eye shadow is one of the most exciting parts of wearing makeup for young girls, but making it look natural is the key. I have two palettes that I believe are suitable for middle school
    • First is the Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette. This retails for $27 and can be found online or at Ulta and Sephora. It has all matte shades and provides 6 neutrals that are PERFECT for just polishing up the look of your lid and crease. It also includes a matte black which can be smudged along the lashline for added thickness rather than a harsh eyeliner (that many girls don't know how to use properly yet)
    • Now, if you either don't want to shell out $27 or you want a few more color options, another fantastic palette is the It's Judy Time palette from BH Cosmetics. This one can only be purchased online and retails for around $15. It is available only for a limited time, but who knows exactly how long that will be. It is great quality and I use it very often. 
      • This palette comes with 12 shadows and is really well rounded out. It includes a mix of shimmers and mattes, but stays mostly in the neutral family with a few fun pops of purple/blue for the girls to have fun with. 
  • With these shadows, they're going to need some brushes, and for the love of God, don't let them use those terrible sponge tip applicators. We can keep it cheap while also giving them something to work with.
    • This BH Cosmetics set contains 7 brushes that I think are are the eye essentials including a blending brush which is necessary for making any look appear less harsh. It comes in a hard case so they can easily travel and store it, which is ideal for slumber parties! The best part? It's only $12.95 (always look for deals on retailmenot.com). 
  • Mascara is the next item, and we can keep this pretty simple. The Covergirl Clump Crusher is a favorite that is perfect for beginners because it really lives up to its name and doesn't clump. This mascara will give a middle schooler some definition to the lashes and bit of volume without creating spider leg lashes.
    • For even more of a natural look, opt for the brown shade rather than black.
  • And lastly we can finish off this beginner kit with a nice natural gloss. You can't really go wrong here, but even something as simple as this Neutrogena MoistureShine Lip Soother would work. If they really want some color, The Maybelline Color Whisper line is great because they start off sheer and you can build to the intensity desired. 

Throw it all in a cute little makeup bag, and she's set! How fun is that? I don't really think foundation is needed until a bit older, but if they insist, maybe opt for a BB Cream or Tinted Moisturizer instead. 

Thanks for reading!
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Say "Bye Bye Redness"


NEW FAVORITE PRODUCT ALERT!
Check out my first impression review on Bye Bye Redness from It Cosmetics.


Seriously, this stuff is amazing and has completely helped my redness issues. You can find this product on QVC or at Ulta! Check out my photos below for before application, after application, and after full makeup.


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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Valentine's Day At Home


As little girls, we grow up with vision of Prince Charming and Prince Eric  in our heads. The hunky, handsome hero who is never void of a romantic gesture and enticing line. As we enter our teen and college years, the prince is replaced by the beloved rom-com as the sultry stares and humorous quips of George Clooney, Ryan Gosling and Matthew McConaughey make our lady parts flutter.

We are trained to believe from early on that this is how men act when they are courting a woman. Then you meet a man and fall head over heels. Before you know it, the world's most romantic holiday is just around the bend and you anxiously wait to see what magical surprises your sweetie has in store, what memorable adventure he has planned, and let's not forget the thoughtful gift he most certainly has up his perfectly pressed and tailored sleeve.

Then the day arrives and reality hits.


Now yes, there are those select few men out there who indeed take their cues from the "Say Anything" and "Love Actually" realm (And yes, I envy and loathe the women who found them). However, I know I am not the only one out there whose significant other finds gift-giving and pressure-filled holidays a burden. My shnookums prefers naps on the couch while claiming to be watching Breaking Bad over in bed, roses and candle-lit meals.


For those of us in this certain situation, Valentine's Day can be frustrating. We simply cannot understand why the men in our lives don't want to shower us with love and gifts. How is that so hard?!

Then, as the relationship continues, a funny thing happens...you learn to adapt. Valentine's Day becomes less about being swept off your feet and flown at the drop of a dime to Paris for a designer shopping spree and more about intentionally taking the time to be together and enjoy your common interests. In our situation, it's also a good excuse to have a date night.


For T and myself, we also have to consider finances. We are saving for a wedding and a house, so things like gifts and date nights have been kind of put on the back burner for awhile. However, I don't want the day (which is also our anniversary) to go unnoticed. This year, we will be planning a night in.

The deal we have in our house is that I cook, he washes the dishes. The boy can hardly boil pasta and this girl LOATHES doing dishes, so it's a compromise that has been working for us for the past 6 years. He hates cooking so much that even on days when I ask him to help me shred cheese or chop a few veggies so I can get dinner ready faster, I am met with sighs and pursed lips.

But this year, we will start off by hiking Stone Mountain (something I've been wanting to do since we moved to Atlanta, and something he would enjoy because it involves physical activity). Then, we decided to cook a fancy meal TOGETHER. I plan on lighting some candles and turning on some sweet music. Afterwards, we will buy a new Blu-Ray (cheaper than going to the movies) and cozy in on the couch with some 98 cent boxed candies from WalMart and a 2-liter.


So it may not be a story worthy of a Ryan Reynolds hit, but it's the reality of real relationships, people! Real men. And as you grow with a real relationship, him offering to cook dinner with you becomes just as special as a shopping spree in Paris.
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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Get Soft Lips In Time For Valentine's Day


For the past few months, I've had a serious problem with extremely dry, cracked, chapped lips. It was painful and ugly.

I tried all chapstick type of products from Maybelline Baby Lips to other drugstore brands that promised to relieve dry lips. None worked. I was incredibly frustrated, and decided I needed to hit Ulta to see what I could find from the higher-end spectrum.

This, my dear internet friends, is the combination I have found that miraculously cured my dry lips. I can't explain how happy I am! With just 3 simple steps, you can also get relief just in time to smooch your Valentine!



1. Lush lip scrub - $9.95: This is a wonderful product and I've had it since June, using it almost every day and I JUST ran out this past week. I've clearly gone out and bought it again. I use it once in the  morning and once before bed. It gets all of those dry flakes and dead skin cells off (plus it tastes great!)

2. Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream - $19.50: After scrubbing my lips, I follow up with this miracle cream. I had heard it was a great product, but  never thought I needed it. BOY WAS I WRONG!!! It truly gets down into my lips and moisturizes them. It also lasts on my lips for a very long time. I use this between 2 and 3 times a day, depending on how my lips are feeling.

3. Malin & Goetz Mojito Lip Balm - $12 (but I found it cheaper on Amazon): This is what I keep with me in my purse to moisturize during the day. It is a clear gel-like formula, and smells amazing. Like the 8-Hour Cream, it also lasts a long time on my lips and really gets deep into the skin. It's not quite as thick as the 8 Hour Cream, so I prefer it for daytime.

VOILA!!! Follow those 3 steps and you'll easily be on your way to soft, kissable lips JUST in time for Valentine's Day!
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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

How I Spend A Snow Day


It's a snow day in Atlanta! And by "snow day," I mean there are flurries that may accumulate up to 2 inches, so basically the entire city and surrounding "burbs" have shut down, gone into hiding, and are praying to come out alive.

I am so thankful that I decided to work right by my house today, because I have heard the traffic has been unreal! We're talking 4 hours to go 20 miles type of unreal.

SO! What's a girl to do when she has the entire afternoon to herself? Obviously relax in a Betty Boop onesie with a Netflix marathon of Once Upon A Time while doing a glam makeup look!


The entire look was achieved using the Lorac Pro palette. 

All Over Lid: Mauve
Transition Shade in crease: Taupe
Outer corner: Espresso
Outer V: Black
Blend Black slightly into lid with: Pewter
Center of lid: Light Pink (blended) followed by Light Bronze (not blended to keep shimmer)
Lower lash line: Pewter

On the cheeks: Tarte blush in Exposed
On the lips: Mac lipstick in Creme Cup and Buxom lipgloss in Katie
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Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Woes and Wins of My Wedding Day Makeup


I've got time. Yes, I know I have lots and lots of time to figure this all out, but give me a break, people! I've been planning my wedding since I was 12 (this isn't an exaggeration)! Couple that with how much I love makeup, and it just wouldn't be possible for me to wait until closer to the Spring 2015 date to figure out my "look" for the big day.

Today I'm going to share with you a few of the products I've decided on for my bridal makeup, and then a few areas I'm still trying to figure out. 

My whole "feel" on my wedding day is romantic and delicate. This weekend I purchased my first ever MAC lipstick in Creme Cup. It is a very universally flattering soft pink. It also feels very nice on the lips!


Moving onto the cheeks, using a Tarte blush was almost a no-brainer. They're well-known as a long-lasting, waterproof and highly-pigmented blush (wow I apparently really enjoy compound words). This was important to me as blush tends to wear off almost faster than lipstick! I chose the shade "Exposed" because, like Creme Cup, it is universally flattering and will go well with any "look" I choose. 


For my eyes, although I still haven't figured out exactly what shades I will use, I'm thinking the palettes I will dive into will be the Lorac Pro palette and/or the Urban Decay Naked 3 palette. I'll update the world when I figure it out, because I know this is incredibly fascinating stuff that is keeping everyone on the edge of their seats. 

THIS IS WHERE I GET CONFUSED

Foundation. Oh how I love and loathe you at the same time. Normally, I would know exactly what I wanted to use, but with a wedding there is this tricky little factor called (dun dun dunnnnn) FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY! *shutter* With flash photography comes this terrible thing called "flashback" where certain ingredients in foundations or powders will cause the flash to "bounce back" and make a white cast on your face, causing you to be easily mistaken for a ghost. 

Now it's not the professional photos I'm worried about, because they are trained to combat this. It's the people who will be taking iPhone or personal camera photos with me. 

I'm frustrated and confused because I have already done a LOT of research on foundations and powders that are supposed to be great for flash photography. However, on me, everything has caused that flashback when I try it out and then do an iphone selfie with flash. I've tried Revlon colorstay, Makeup Forever HD, Urban Decay Naked, Covergirl 3in1, and Laura Mercier Oil Free Supreme. 

Casper. All of them. So I'm out of ideas, kids. 

PLEASE LEAVE ME SUGGESTIONS!!! For the record, the powder I've been using over it is Rimmel Stay Matte and I have not been putting a moisturizer with SPF underneath. Just Benefit Porefessional primer.
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