Spring Break & Product Chat

Phew! I just finished a midterm, turned in two essays, and presented a group project. Spring semester really hit the ground running in 2017, and this feels like the first time I’ve stopped to catch my breath. It’s nice to be productive, but it was getting to be a little stressful. I’m embracing spring break this year and happily starting it off with dinner, drinks, and a party for St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow!

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For St. Paddy’s Day, I picked up a Kandee Johnson x Sinful Colors nail polish in the shade Mermaid Tail. It’s such a gorgeous, deep green, and I couldn’t resist it when I finally saw it in person. It will match well with the green Game of Thrones t-shirt I ordered back in February, and my Lucky Shamrock votives from Yankee Candle. I dug a couple of them up from my stash from last spring, and I think I’m going to dice one up to put into my wax melters today.

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Something I’ve been working through lately is a box of assorted teas I received on Valentine’s Day. There is never a bad time for tea, in my opinion! There are some great stand-out flavors in this box. It came from Taylors of Harrogate and I must recommend it to anyone that enjoys tea or is curious about it.

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The green & jasmine tea is so unique and every gulp makes me feel great about what I’m putting into my body. I don’t always feel that way about my calorie-and-sugar-packed lattes. Of course I’m a sucker for peppermint during winter, so that tea has been a favorite as well. I’m going to love having this box around during spring this year.

 

Lush

I’ve also been using Lush products for most of my showers and baths lately. Now this one is strange for me, because I’m clearly a Bath & Body Works junkie! I wanted to switch things up, though, and I’ve had some Lush products in my collection that I’d been neglecting for a few months. The bar soaps are great because they aren’t terribly drying like some other more common brands tend to be on my skin. The scents are nice, and overall I’m happy that I finally gave Lush a solid shot.

 

What are some products you have been loving so far this year? Any favorite teas, polishes, or body care items? Lush recommendations, perhaps? ūüôā

Glade “Blooming Peony & Cherry” Fragrance

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I’m the type of person that needs a scent for each holiday. I fell in love with Glade’s Blooming Peony & Cherry on the very first sniff, so it’s a fitting choice for Valentine’s Day. My mother sprayed it after purchasing it at the store and I just happened to be there to experience it. “What is this scent?!” I needed to know right away. I was thrilled to see it in wax melt form at Walmart a few months later, although she’d already gifted a bottle of the room spray to me. I went through the wax and was quick to repurchase another pack.

The smell, to me, is a perfect Valentine’s Day scent. It isn’t particularly romantic, but it’s the sweetest mix of fresh flowers and cherry candy to my nose. It is a pretty strong scent, about a 7.5 out of 10. It is a little on the feminine side, but not to the point where it cannot be enjoyed by everyone. Even my boyfriend likes it, and he usually prefers cologne-y or foodie scents.

This fragrance comes in a few forms including wax melts, room spray, scented oil, and 3.4 ounce candles. If Blooming Peony & Cherry sounds like your thing, check it out!

*This is not a sponsored post. I’m just happy to shout-out my favorites in the scent world, and I’m enjoying this wax for Valentine’s Day with my Valentine! I hope you all have a wonderful love holiday if you choose to celebrate. What will you be burning or melting on the 14th? xoxo

Welcoming 2017

Happy New Year!

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It was an excellent beginning of¬†2017 for me… until I got sick. Yes, two colds only a week apart. I suppose that’s what happens when you open your home to guests and decide to have a three day sleepover that includes children.

It’s hard to believe that NYE was already one week ago today. My New Year’s Eve started early with a friend to have coffee and then see Passengers starring Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence (it was good!). It was during this late morning outing that I decided to get mildly dolled up in a NYE outfit, jewelry, and makeup. I only went to a coffee shop, the movie theater, and the grocery store, but hey, it was a holiday! I had to be festive.

Night time was all about getting cozy in pajamas & slippers and ordering dinner with everyone, while playing games and eventually watching the ball drop on TV. The following two days involved a lot of take out, football, and New Year’s Eve party playlists spontaneously starting and stopping on the Echo.

Earlier this week I was finally winding down after all of the excitement (and cleaning) when I became super drained and fell asleep early, only to wake up at 4 AM with a nasty sore throat and stuffed nose. Ugh. So I guess I ended 2016 with a cold and started 2017 with a new one!

Did anyone catch the Game of Thrones marathon that aired on HBO from the day after Christmas until New Year’s Eve? I DID! Oh, how I love that show, and how I loved to end 2016 binging on it for several days. I also got to end the year with a brand new album released on Christmas day by favorite artists of mine in Run The Jewels. Now that was ending on a high.

 

Some of my beauty and scent choices for New Year’s Eve included:

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-Bath & Body Works Cocktail Dress fine fragrance mist
-Bath & Body Works Black Tie 3-wick candle and room spray
-Urban Decay Naked 2 eyeshadow palette
-NYX Butter Gloss in the shade Angel Food Cake
-CoverGirl silver nail polish (no name on the bottle…?) with Hollister white glitter polish (Sparks Fly)
-A few Christmas gifts, including a necklace, a gray and black chevron scarf, and comfy silver slippers!

 

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So I’m late with this post because I’ve been sick all week, but here’s a toast to good health and happiness for all. Cheers to 2017 and to you.

(My New Year resolution was to have my healthiest year in terms of diet and fitness goals. So far I’ve only been ill, have barely eaten, and have laid around in bed or on the couch. Errr… can I have a do-over?! ūüėõ )

Blogmas 2016 Day 25: Merry Christmas!

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Merry Christmas! To those of you that celebrate other holidays, Happy Holidays to you, and to anyone that doesn’t celebrate at all this time of year, I hope you have a great day and that the season has been kind to you.

I was going to post about some of the beauty & scent-related gifts I received, but I will save that for another post. Today I just wanted to focus my final Blogmas post on wishing everyone a happy holiday.

As a beauty and scent junkie, it’s been wonderful to receive all of my gifts this year, but of course the products themselves aren’t the real gifts. It’s the kindness that I’ve been shown, for this holiday and really the entire year. I’m truly blessed to finish this year and begin another one knowing that I’ve stuck to my goals of being happy and healthy, and that I don’t have bad blood with anyone. Instead I have a lot of kindness to repay.

Again, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of you. I’m off to eat a big plate of chocolate chip pancakes.

One last time for the final Blogmas post…

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Body Care Scent of the Day: Bath & Body Works Gingerbread Latte
Home Fragrance Scent of the Day: Goose Creek Christmas Cakes

Blogmas 2016 Day 24: Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas Eve! I’m still sick today so I’m taking it easy. I’m not going to cook dinner or bake cupcakes like I planned to do today. Instead, my mom is going to cook a turkey with a few sides and has a chocolate silk pie for me. I’m going to paint my nails and then eventually curl up on the couch to watch movies. Being sick doesn’t sound too bad right now, does it?

Before it all comes down, I wanted to share photos of some of my favorite holiday decor. I’m slowly turning into an ornament collector, or baubles as they’re called by some. A lot of the things I’ve collected are mismatched and there really isn’t a cohesive theme to my winter holiday decor. It’s just a mashup of whatever I thought was cute! Here are a few of those things:

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I picked out a few of my favorite ornaments. I’ve got some decor that was passed down from my mother, a couple of 3-wick candle holders from Bath & Body Works, some fake¬†and¬†real plants, a Wisconsin Badger snowman, and more. There are some special things that I’m missing here, but hey, there is always next year.

I hope everyone is having, or will have, a safe, healthy, and happy holiday season.

Blogmas 2016 Day 23: My Christmas Trees

It’s about time that I posted photos of my Christmas trees! I didn’t end up decorating my large Christmas tree this year, so I’ve been surrounded by mini trees all month. My nieces helped me decorate two of them, which is always a fun activity for us to do when they come over to visit. I’m sure I’ll be sad to put the colorful trees away next month like I usually am when the new year begins. My trees have become my favorite part of my holiday decor. I have some favorite ornaments as well that I will post about tomorrow.

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It can be difficult to see it in person, but there is a baby tree next to that Santa.

 

I mentioned a few times that I was away from home for four days for work related stuff. I was so excited to come home, but since I’ve been home I¬†came down with a cold! I’m not so sure I’m going to be cooking my Italian dinner for everyone if I’m still ill, since I don’t want to contaminate others. As of now, my Christmas plans are up in the air.

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I’ve been in bed all day, drinking lots of tea and watching all of the holiday episodes from That ’70s Show. It is snowing again, so we’re guaranteed a white Christmas at this point. I’ve had plenty of time to relax and watch the snowflakes drop down all around me through¬†my windows; it’s actually really calming (when I know I’m not going to go out and shovel any of it).

 

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Body Care Scent of the Day: Bath & Body Works Lavender Vanilla Aromatherapy
Home Fragrance Scent of the Day: Goose Creek Vanilla Hot Chocolate

Blogmas 2016 Day 22: Holiday Memories

Every year of my life so far, the winter holidays have been different experiences for me. How I feel about the holidays changes, and how I celebrate them changes as well. As a child, Christmas was thrilling and magical, but¬†New Year’s Eve really had no meaning to me. As a teen & young adult, the opposite was true. I didn’t care much for all of the holiday cheer and just wanted to be out with my friends. Now I’m at a stage in life where I’m responsible for “making” the holiday magic that I loved as a child. It’s not about receiving every toy on my wishlist, and it’s not about going out and partying with my friends anymore either. It’s about spending time with my loved ones and making memories for myself and others to look back on fondly.

A trip down memory lane helped me realize those things this year. Sure, the holiday songs are the same, and some of the movies are the same, but Christmas has never been a repeat for me. Every New Year’s Eve¬†seems like the same ball drop and another count down to midnight, but the years I say hello and goodbye¬†to are quite different each time, even apart from simply growing older every year. Some of my memories aren’t as great as I wish they were, but I’m happy to have all of them.

 

(Please excuse the “photo of a photo” shots – many of these are from frames or scrapbooks that I didn’t want to take apart!)

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This was one of my first Christmases, and of course I’m wearing a dress for the occasion. My mother often reminds me that I only ever wanted to wear dresses when I was little.

 

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A shot of me admiring the sight of Christmas morning. This was a time when we still put up real trees for the holiday¬†and didn’t have any cats around to wreck them yet.

 

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I had Christmas in public school back then, too. I’m not sure if that is still common today.¬†This was my favorite shirt for about a year, so of course I wanted to wear it for the holiday party.

 

Oh, and then came the awkward years as a pre-teen and teenager…

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I had a long phase of not smiling for any pictures, ever. Not even for the holidays. All that I wanted for Christmas was new CDs, and then I’d spend the bulk of my time locked in my bedroom listening to them.

 

Next came my first college years, aka the Myspace era. My winter holiday photos included bad selfies and cheap booze, like any other events with my peers back then.

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I didn’t decorate at home or bake any cookies during these few years. I really wasn’t festive at all. I did see my family, but I think I only stuck around long enough to eat dinner and exchange gifts.

 

And then I received my first little Christmas tree!

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I believe it was on the Target website where I first found this mini tree in a pink/purple color and I became obsessed with having it for Christmas. The person I was dating at the time surprised me with it and now it’s one out of five different colors that I have. I’m in love with my colorful mini trees.

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And I finally decided to be festive again that year, too. I decorated, baked, and wore a leopard print Santa hat all night.

 

The craziest New Year’s Eve I’ve ever had was the year that followed, when I traveled to Northern Wisconsin and celebrated all night long on a frozen lake.

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A man was available to drive us around the lake for “sleigh rides.” Some people played ball games, others hung around the bonfire (which I’m surprised I never took a picture of). Simply walking around on the ice was trippy enough, but the fire pit on top of¬†the ice was freaky!

2013

That night ended with sky lanterns and fireworks. It’s been a little difficult to top that New Year celebration since then, but I’m okay with it. The hangover that followed was brutal. Note to self: Drinking to stay warm isn’t the best¬†idea.

 

This year and the previous two have been all about the children in my family. I bake and decorate with them in mind first and foremost. My¬†most recent holidays have also revolved around my current relationship and the traditions we’ve been creating together. Who knows what will come next – perhaps children of my own? Christmas in a new place? My winter holiday evolution shall continue…

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