Friday, August 30

It's Friday, so give a HIGH FIVE!!

Iiiii have taken absolutely no pictures this week. #winning

So instead of listing my top five things that happened during the week, I'm going to list (in no particular order) my top five most anticipated items for Autumn.

one | cut-out booties

two | comfy sweaters

three | autumn-colored makeup

four | hats & sunnies

five | new hairrrr styles

Which one is your favorite?! Personally, I can't wait to experience them all!! I'll probably be mixing in a lot of braids since my hair is getting longer. But I can't wait!!

Everyone please stay safe this holiday season. And most importantly, HAVE FUN!!

I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for H54F!

Thursday, August 29

From desk to dinner.

desk to dinner:
5 easy ways to go from
day job to DATE NIGHT!

refresh your face
I kept my makeup minimal today since I was rocking the bold lipstick. I wore a light color on my lid and a light brown in the crease to give my eye a little depth. To add to it for an after-work look, all I did was draw on some black liner on top and along the waterline on the bottom. Easy peazy.

pump up the volume
Let's face it. Hair doesn't always do what we want it to do. You tell it to stick up and it lays down. You tell it to be curly and it stays straight. When you've got a date planned during the week after work, I would suggest carrying a travel-sized bottle of volumizing spray. Lean over and toss your hair over your head. Spray all over and work in between with your fingers. Stand back up, flipping your hair back, and you should have tons of volume!

change jewelry accessories
With a dressy outfit for work, I wanted to play down my accessories. But going out I wanted to mix up metals and double wrap two of my favorite necklaces.

add/remove clothing accessories
I decided to trade the green blazer for a black denim motorcycle jacket. These jackets are hott for the coming Fall fashion season and I completely forgot about it until I was trying to write this post and was pulling pieces from my closet. Instead of changing jackets, you could just remove it. Just another option.

change shoes
The other easiest change from desk to dinner? Trade out your shoes. I'd wear heels every day of my life if I could but I know most work places only allow conservative wardrobes. Either way, pack some killer heels and pop those babies on for a night out on the town!!

Dress (Target) | Nude Pumps (Target-similar) | Green Blazer (Forever 21-similar) | Glasses (Claire's)

Motorcycle Jacket (PackSun-similar) | Nude and Black Heels (Charlotte Russe-similar) | Gold Necklace (Urban Outfitters-similar) | Silver Multi-chain Necklace (New York & Co-similar) | Ring (Charlotte Russe-similar) | Clutch (Target-similar, similar) | Sunglasses (Forever 21)

Oh, Labor Day!

As we all know, after Labor Day hits us Monday it will officially be Fall. Or at least that's how my book sees it. I've written about a couple of Fall things on the blog but I keep doing a 180 because I just can't give up Summer yet. It's funny how when it's cold, we can't wait for warm weather. And when it's hot, we can't wait for cooler weather. The weather just needs to be a breezy 70 degrees all year long.


Labor Day was designed to make tribute to all of the worker's in the country who have made and are continuing to make our country great. I mean, we always have room for improvement but let's all relax on the extended weekend. I've got some yummy Summer cocktails that I wanted to share while I still can and not get strange looks with an umbrella in my cup. This one's for you and you and... ALL OF US!

long island iced tea (with a twist)
1 oz vodka
1 oz rum
1 oz gin
1 oz tequila
1 oz triple sec
1 1/2 oz sweet and sour mix
1 oz raspberry liquor

Pour all ingredients over ice and shake several times until mixed. Garnish with a lemon or lime.

LIITs normally call for Cola which gives the drink its' tea-like flavor, but the twist to this recipe is the raspberry liquor! I don't think I've experienced anything with raspberry in it that I didn't like so I am definitely pulling it out again this holiday weekend.

very fruity rum punch
1 1/2 cup rum
1/3 cup banana liquor
1 dash grenadine syrup
1 6oz can frozen orange juice concentrate
1 6oz can frozen pineapple concentrate
1 orange, sliced into rounds
1 lemon, sliced into rounds
1 lime, sliced into rounds

In a large punch bowl, prepare the juice concentrates according to can directions. Pour over all of the alcohols. Float the fruit slices at the top. Voila!

I'm a sucker for fruity alcoholic drinks. You caught me. Once I find one that I love, I become addicted pretty quickly. If you're like me then I know you'll fall head over heels just as much as I did.

I thought about telling you about the infamous Summer drink Beergaritas but we all know how to make those. So sit back and enjoy your three day weekends! I'm sure you'll probably find a good sale or two as well so indulge a little. Make one of your last Summer hoorahs worth it!!

Tuesday, August 27

5 minute makeup

You've overslept and the clock is ticking for you to get out the door in five minutes. Five minutes?! Are you frickin' kidding me?? Well, what do you do?

Personally, even when I do oversleep, I don't skimp time with my makeup. If I were at a different job, then maybe I'd have to reevaluate my priorities. But for now, let's play along.

There are really only five essential products that you need from your makeup bag to "Make it work!" as Tim Gunn would say. You might not be able to experiment with any new eye shadows but these products can get you out the door looking fresh, cute, and still put together.

1. SMOOTH on some creamy yet light foundation so that it covers your entire face. BB, CC, or DD cream would be perfect for this! Also make sure to find something with spf in it to protect your skin.

2. BRIGHTEN your newly covered complexion with a peachy-colored blush. Peach is a universally flattering color. Apply it to the apples of your cheeks and blend away towards your temples.

3. CURL your eyelashes with a product like E.L.F. lash curlers. Some makeup artists swear by their curler brand but I haven't found any differences. You can't beat this one for $1.

4. LENGTHEN your eyelashes with black mascara. One of my favorites is Maybelline Mega Plush mascara. Even when you're not wearing eyeshadow, a dramatic set of lashes can make you look polished.

5. TINT your lips with some colored chapstick. Let's face it, we probably have at least one tube of tinted chapstick floating around in the bottom of our purses. Or if you're a lipgloss kind of gal, wear something sheer and pink so that there is still color but it's not overbearing with the rest of your face. 

Now hit the road, Jack!!

If you're like me and take more than five minutes (or thirty) on perfecting your makeup look for the day, are you up for a challenge? I challenge dare all of you to find five products in your makeup bag that would complete your look for a day. If you need more, then cool! But see if you can apply it all in under five minutes.


Sunday, August 25

Dexter and Ambellina the Bear

I shoulda learned by now. Sugar + late night = one crazy set of dreams. And by "set" I mean that I'll usually wake up several times during the night because of the sugar or caffeine running through my veins and then the second I fall back asleep, I have an entirely different dream, or two.

Case in point.

We went to bed last night around 10 pm. I know, I know. Just call me Grammy 'cuz I'm living wild on the weekend! We've become so hooked on this radio show called "Echoes" with John Diliberto and it's part of our nightly routine. Side note--look up this show because it's that good. I'm not even kidding. I don't remember a thing from the show but I do remember my dream.

Dexter--yes, THAT Dexter--and I were walking to our friend's gala opening at a museum downtown. We were all dressed up and ready to have fun. It was supposed to be the greatest social event to hit the art world that season! I don't know if it was my inner narcissist or what but I didn't even notice that Dexter was wearing his "kill outfit" until we were walking in the building. I was horrified. I immediately grabbed his hand and pulled him down the hallway towards the restrooms and coat check. He looked at me like I was stupid and asked if I remembered why were attending tonight. I shook my head because I apparently forgot to take my ginkgo bilboa that morning. Go me. He rushes me through his plan one more time but I still didn't remember. I was able to grab a sports coat on the way back from the coat check so it would at least cover his henley shirt but Dexter throws it on the floor and picks up his walking pace towards the refreshment table. I lost grip of his hand so I took my time marveling at all of the decorations. It was like we were at the middle school dance. Streamers, balloons, punch bowls, and all the girls were wearing these hideous poufy-sleeved dresses. Confusion, that's all that's going through my head right now. I push it aside because I needed to see where Dexter fled to. I make my way through the heavily cologne-doused men and find him crouched in the corner next to the DJ booth. I speak his name and he looks up at me with this devilish look in his eyes. He squirms just a little and slides down this hole through the wall and into the ground. I wasn't planning on following him but I was bumped by one of the dancing guests and down I went! I landed in this lab-looking room and Dexter is now standing over this table. I walk up beside him and see that there is a person lying on the table. Dexter isn't about to stab him like he does on the TV show but instead, he is coloring on their body with a magic marker and making planet and star shapes. This time, when Dexter pulls up his head to grab another color, I realize it's not him any longer. It's me. I'm looking at me. And Dexter stabs me, the me that has been in this story all along. As I fall to my knees, he stabs me again. And as I start to fade away, I hear him talking to the me I just found. "As she dies, you must live. We all are reborn and you must make wiser decisions. We all must do this. Let me grab the others!" I see Dexter running off as everything turns to black.

Waking up from this dream during the night was a little strange. For one, most of my dreams end in me being chased or me falling and suddenly being awaken. I don't recall ever dying in a dream either. So I have no clue what meaning could be behind all of this. While I was awake, I went to the restroom, then came back and fell asleep for the remainder of the night. This second dream was much shorter.

I was being chased by my bear, Ambellina. She was mad that I no longer slept with her. (In real life, I slept with her when I was still living at home and needed to feel the love when I was away from Jerry.) The angrier she got, the taller she became. At this point, she was taller than the light posts and had learned how to run fast without her fluffy legs slowing her down. I tried to reason with her but it didn't work. As I was hiding from her one day, I came upon this man in an alley. We introduced ourselves, he somehow knew what was going on, and advised that I sneak up behind Ambellina and dismember her. The man wouldn't tell me how but said I would figure it out. I built the courage and a couple of days later I stalked her so I could do what I was asked. She was standing near a fountain in Central Park and I snuck up behind her with hedge trimmers in hand. She turned around when she heard the sound of the metal clippers opening up their jaws, grabbed them swiftly from my hands, and turned them on me. I didn't know what to do, but I was petrified. I considered drowning myself in the fountain but I was too much of a coward for that. All I could do was freeze in place. As Ambellina was starting to swing the clippers towards my stomach, I woke up.

Thank you sweet baby Jesus!! I was so relieved to know it was just a dream. It's funny how when crazy things happen, I don't question its' integrity, I just go along with it.

I just thought I'd share these two dreams with you. It's fun writing them down and looking back at the stories in the future. I once kept a dream journal but doing so online is much more efficient.

Well, toodle-oo!!

Friday, August 23

high five for friday

I've been pretty behind with writing this week. My bad. Only not really. I've just been in a somber mood. I need something to perk me up. So I'll figure that out eventually.

But on to today's post:

The girls went out for Rachel's birthday last weekend and it was tons of fun! We did dinner, the Double Decker BYOB Nashville ghost tour, and some bar hopping downtown. Ghosts + liquor = one hell of a great night. Just trust me. I don't go downtown all that often. Too many tourists. I just took this picture because I loved the western style of it. Couldn't tell ya what bar it was from though...

Sorry for the boobage.

First time at the dermatologist and she shaves some mole-ish spots off of me. One on my big toe--let me just point out that it's a weird sensation getting an injection in your toe--and two on my stomach. One of the spots from my stomach sits right under my left boob and my bra rubs on it. Ouch. I got fed up this week and decided to get a little creative. I had this 1x3 inch block with an L on it that I kept at my desk. I decided to stick it between my sternum and the middle of my bra and voila! it gave me just enough room to get the bra away from that spot so it doesn't rub it funny. I was scared the pressure wouldn't allow it to heal correctly. So now the question is would I rather have a sore shaved spot or a bruised sternum from a wooden block?!

While I was waiting for the dermatologist, I found this segment from Seventeen magazine about "Curvy Girl Secrets". I love that a lot of fashion magazines are offering this for readers now. It should have happened long before showing as how good 'ole USA is obese. Anywho, I made mental notes for future outfit picks.

We went to the Wilson County Fair Wednesday night--first time in five years or so--and the ferris wheel was like magic; magic full of pure hallucinated joy. I wasn't actually hallucinating, but I felt like I jumped through a wormhole into another timeline back when Noah and Ali loved each other.

My favorite part of the fair?? We got our FIRST caricature drawn! And how cute are we? He told us he was the "kind caricaturist" so his drawings aren't so outrageous and overly played out with features. He asked what our hobbies were so Jerry chose video games and I chose makeup artistry. If you want to find the artist, his name is Quilly and you can find his Facebook here.

I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for H54F. Enjoy your weekends and stay safe!!

Tuesday, August 20

August IPSY bag

My Ipsy bag finally arrived!! It ended up in a batch of shipments that went to a DHL facility--not in the normal route--and just sat there for days. Seriously, Ipsy?! Wanna get on my bad side? Do this every month. I was able to view my Glam Room on their site in the mean time and it showed me what I was to expect. It told me I would be getting samples of Urban Decay Lipstick, Smashbox foundation primer, some exfoliation cleanser, mascara, and bronzer. I opened the bag tonight and only got three of the things they showed. I'm still super pumped though.

The theme this month was "Glamour Academy" and was based around products you needed for going back to school.

      Right away I want to smell this product. I'm always curious of facial product fragrances because one wrong scent can turn you away for good. This sample doesn't mention whether it has a scent or not but it definitely smells unscented. I've also heard a lot about jojoba beads lately. They supposedly are gentle enough for any skin type and removes any toxins and dead skin cells. Other than the lipstick because I'm saving the best for last I'm most anxious to try this.

      This is another product that I just have to smell. If you remember from last month, the CC cream I received smelled like celery but then gradually got sweeter. This BB cream smells more like makeup annnd it's not got that annoying "glow" to the color so I can actually wear this stuff as foundation. There is shade matching technology so as long as you're white of some sorts, it will match to you. Or so they say. It's very smooth and more liquid than creamy which is what I want for something light. Now that I've rubbed it on my skin, I might bump this up my list of most wanted things to try first.

      First and foremost, I LOVE that you can find this blush in stores like Target. I have never used cream blush before and I'm not so sure that I would have bought this on my own. I feel like cream blush makes me look oily or something. But I know they can have great effects on your skin. I'll still give it a try.

      I love love love trying the latest mascara to see what makes my lashes look fuller and longer. Pixi claims that this mascara will boost your lashes giving them that "push-up" effect lasting all day. The mascara wand is skinny and I'm using to thicker brushes so I'll have to get used to that if I decide to stick with this product.

      Yayyyyy!! I am in love with ALL Urban Decay products. But, me + lipstick = true love forever. In the words of Urban Decay, this lipstick is "creamy and badass" and I completely agree. This color is luxurious in all the right ways but unfortunately it is a little pricey. If money isn't an issue, then BUY THIS PRODUCT. But if you are more budget-friendly like myself, Maybelline has several great lip products. 

Annnd we're done. My Ipsy has gotten better each month (unlike Birchbox cough cough) so I'll definitely be sticking with it for a while.

Sunday, August 18

30 x 30 Challenge

A 30 x 30 Challenge is where I pull thirty pieces from my wardrobe that includes shoes, jewelry, clothing, and any other accessories and make thirty different outfits enough for--you guessed it--thirty days. I try to stick to my fifty dollar shopping budget each month but I can be known for blowing that on makeup or shoes alone. So I decided to dig deep in my over-stuffed closet and carefully decide what items to use for this dare.

If this challenge proves worthy, I'll also plan to do it for cold weather. And I'll be able to down-size my closet and concentrate just on the pieces that I will have learned to mix and match rather than buying new items every season.

I procrastinated a little with this project because it was taking me a bit to pull the piece from my closet. So even though it's the end of August and Summer is drawing to a close, it's still the hottest month in middle Tennessee. From here on out: Warm weather 30 x 30 Challenge will be in August. Cold weather 30 x 30 Challenge will be in, say, February. Sound fair? Let's get started!!

Like I said, it took me forever to decide on which pieces to choose, but I finally have it narrowed down to thirty. These are the chosen ones.

5 BOTTOMS--3 skirts, 1 pair of shorts, 1 pair of jeans








I'll begin this picture journey tomorrow morning. I am really excited, as I'm sure you are too, to see what outfits can be made from this challenge.

If you have a shopping budget or simply have closets stuffed full of clothes that you don't wear, I encourage you to participate in your own 30 x 30 Challenge!!

Friday, August 16

high FIVE for friday

1. Jerry's sister had "pin the mustache" on her face for her birthday party last weekend. We tried keeping the staches on the picture but the boys were just being silly with them so they kept falling. That's why she marked everyone's initials.

2. My dad found this recipe on Facebook and when Jerry and I went over for dinner recently, he made it for dessert. Introducing chocolate chip cheesecake. It's got cookie on the bottom, cheesecake in the middle, and more chocolate chip cookie on top. #fatties

3. If you remember seeing my reveal, my Birchbox arrived in the mail today!! I'm still a little annoyed that Ipsy isn't here. But nonetheless, YAY Birchbox!

4. I can't go a week without pictures of my kitties. Sophie can't stand to sleep on me but the second she's on or even near Jerry, she conks out in some of the weirdest positions. #cutenessoverload

5. I've been feeling pretty hopeless the past week or so because of some personal things. It's sayings like this that I have to keep plastered everywhere to remind myself that hope still exists. Seriously, I've got them on my phone, my computers (home AND work), in picture frames..... #notquiteoutforthecount

I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for H54F. 

I truly wish that everyone has a blast over the weekend!! Thank God it's Friday.....and soon to be Saturday and Sunday!!!

Thursday, August 15

5 DIY Natural Beauty Tips

Just think about this. Your pantry is now your new makeup case. Say what?! You've got it. I've got a handy dandy list of all natural ingredients found in your kitchen that can also be used in a different way. With this list, you can re-imagine and learn what products will work in your beauty regimen. If you don't know how things will react to your skin, Google it. You'd be amazed at how many professionals live for this kind of stuff.

Introducing, 10 DIY Natural Beauty Tips: From the kitchen to YOU.

Mix corn starch, baking soda and coconut oil together to create all natural deodorant. I'm always up for finding a deodorant that doesn't contain aluminum and still does what it says it will do. Directions on how to make it and why can be found here.

2 Banish dandruff with an egg and olive oil. I'm okay with admitting that I don't wash my hair everyday. I wash it once or twice a week because that's all it needs. The downside is that there are times when dandruff likes to say hello. I've actually try the oil and egg trick and it works pretty well! Directions can be found here.

3 Mix lavender oil, corn starch, rice flower and arrowroot powder to create homemade dry shampoo. This one is, hands down, my favorite because they get rid of oils AND gives me volume at the same time. Dry shampoos are very popular right now and I know you don't want to spend more than you have to for this stuff. Now there's a DIY version! The blog with these directions has been removed so I won't have a link. If you know if where to find it, let me know and I'll be glad to tag it!

(source unknown)

4 Make a strawberry mask to help a face full of acne. These ingredients are most always in your kitchen so it will be super easy to make. If you didn't already know, strawberries are naturally full of salicylic acid and is what's in all acne cleansers on the store shelves. Here is how you make the mask.

5 Turn dried beets into blush. This is another favorite on the list. For those of us that keep beets in their house, this DIY recipe turns into a beautiful powder blush. Strawberries can also be substituted. Yay!! Do any of us really keep beets in the house anymore? Didn't think so. The link also shows you how to make lipgloss from beets if you don't want to make blush. 

What I love about the five things on this list is that someone was smart enough to find alternatives. We shouldn't be confined to only products that are on the store shelves. If there is a more natural solution, more points if it's DIY, then why not experiment?! Go on and have fun with it!!

Do you have any DIY recipes for similar beauty tips that are more interesting? Have you tried them? I'd love to hear your suggestions!