Sunday, August 21, 2016

August Favorites

I thought I would kick off my weekly blogging with a favorites post. The featured products here are some of my favorites over the month of August. I would definitely buy these products again and wouldn't have any hesitation in recommending them to others. Check them out...

Country Heat!!!! The newest Beachbody program by Autumn Calabrese. I love this program. I have several of the other programs but I think this might be my favorite because it's FUN! A 30 minute dance workout that totally has me breaking a sweat. I actually look forward to my workouts.

Elf products are sometimes hit and miss (don't get the mascara!) but this one is a keeper. For $3 this is a great tinted moisturizer. It smells good, has decent coverage and takes care of my skin. I use this on days when I'm not into the full makeup look (hello heat!) or under my foundation for a good base coverage.

Kind Bars!! I usually have one of these in my bag for a snack. They manage to hold me over long enough until I can get a real meal. I have not found a flavor that I don't like.

I bought this to participate in a wellness challenge at work. I've tried journaling in the traditional sense and was never able to keep up. The one sentence a day approach is a lot less intimidating and I'm loving it.

Soap & Glory and Fresh products are my skin care jam! I had the shower gel that goes with the Righteous Body Butter and I fell in love with the scent. It's very citrusy and fresh and I want to drown in it. I decided to get the lotion to see if it had fragrance staying power and it does. Yum! The Heel Genius is equally amazing. It makes my feet soft as baby's bum. Soap & Glory products are some of my favorites skin care items. Fresh is also a favorite. I'm not a fan of the price tags but there is no denying that they do what they say they will do. I picked up the Umbrian Clay Oil-Free face lotion (I've also used the Lotus Youth Preserve which is good in winter) upon suggestion of the Sephora lady. I have been having super oily skin in my t-zone and my pores are craters right now. It's making me super self conscious! This lotion, combined with the Umbrian clay mask and toner (got samples....need full size) are working wonders. Highly recommended for oily skin.

And that's all for this month. What have been your favorites?

Saturday, August 20, 2016


It might just be me but I feel like every mommy blog is geared toward mom's with little kids.  Or pregnant moms.  Where are the mom's with teens?  Every health blog seems like the blogger is already at their goal or living nothing but a healthy life.  The design blogs are always picture perfect and everything looks immaculate. Beauty bloggers...they seem so good at what they do.  It's like I'm all fucked up living in a perfect blog world and trying to keep up!  lol

I'm not put together or where I want to be or even skilled at blogging (I can't take a good pic to save my life!).  I skip months at a time and forget this blog exists.  I decided to do a health blog and then get bored with that and want to do a beauty blog.  Sometimes I want to do a fashion blog and then I laugh like a hyena because I know NOTHING about fashion.  The only thing I know for certain is that I want to blog about something so I get on here once in a while and type out some crap just for fun.  The beauty is that I can do that and I can do it when I want to!

Today I wanted to blog about my fave beauty products but then I got all lazy about taking pictures. I also wanted to blog about Country Heat, the new Beachbody program, but again, the details of doing that seemed too involved. Hahaha.  

This post may seem like total BS but for me it's checking in to see if I want to keep up and blog in general.  I know that I have no readers (ok, maybe there is one) but blogging is somewhat fun when you know what you want to talk about.  

I'm going to try super hard to get one blog post up a week.  SMART goals, you know?  I'm not going to call this a beauty blog or a health/fitness blog or a mom blog.  I'm just going to call this a "whatever the fuck I want to write about" blog.  Hopefully I can keep up with that.

Off to get some ideas on the "blog planner"...

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Sunday, May 29, 2016

The Start of Something New

I once again had a fairly major health scare.  I'm not getting into it but it may have finally cemented the fact that the lifestyle I'm leading is not going lend itself to many more years of life.  I look at my kids and I wonder if I'm going to be around when they grow up and start families of their own.  I look at my husband and realize that if I don't start making some sort of changes, he will have to live out his golden years by himself.  I look at the life around me and think how it would suck if I didn't get to participate in it anymore.

I started the 21 Day Fix and did fairly well on it.  I wouldn't say it was easy by any means but it was doable once I got the hang of it.  I ended up losing 5 pounds fairly quickly and I was feeling good!!  I don't have an exact reason or pinpoint for why I stopped doing it, but I did.  And all the progress went away.

Then the new health scare.

Now I know what you might be thinking because I would think the same thing if I read a blog where the owner couldn't get their shit together.  Why would I continue to write a health and fitness blog when I can't seems to succeed at either?  Well...I continue because giving up is not an option.  I know that one day, something will catapult me to succeed.  The desire is there, it's just that the willpower lacks sometimes.

In an effort to hold myself accountable I started looking into Beachbody coaching again. I met a friend of my sister who is a very active Beachbody coach and she holds monthly challenges.  I decided that I needed to be in her group and participate in a challenge.  I'm sure this will help me stay involved and working hard.  To do the challenge the requirement is that you own 21 Day Fix and that you purchase a month supply of Shakeology.  Since I already owned 21 Day Fix the only missing piece was the Shakeology.  I had tried Shakeology (that sample you get with any program you order) and wasn't a big fan of the taste BUT that was probably because I sampled the chocolate flavor and to tell you the truth, I'm not going to enjoy chocolate because that's not me.  I did FEEL better on Shakeology though so I decided to order the Tropical Strawberry flavor.  I imagine it tasting kinda like Strawberry milk, but probably not.  lol

Long story short, I ended up becoming a coach, ordered a Challenge pack (with the Brazilian Butt Lift program), and I'm starting the "Beach Bum" challenge tomorrow.  21 day from tomorrow I have the goal of being down 10-15 pounds but more importantly I hope to have established a habit of exercising and eating clean. 

Who knows where the Beachbody coaching opportunity will take me.  For now I'm a discount/hobby coach looking to get on the road to better health for myself.  

Follow along on this blog for updates on how its going, tips and tricks I discover along the way, and whatever else comes up.  I WILL finish the 21 days if it kills me.  You can do anything for 21 days, right?
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Thursday, April 21, 2016

21 Day Fix - Week One

I'm the worst blogger in the world.  I did my New Years resolution post and then the blog died again.  I honestly want to be better about it because I think it helps ME but I just don't have the time or energy sometimes.  It would be so much better if this was my job.  ;)

I did my resolution post and have been trying but I'm doing my usual.  You know, "the start a plan, it doesn't work right away, so quit" plan.  I was doing wheat and sugar free for a couple of weeks.  Not consecutively but randomly.  I felt so much better while I was doing it and did notice that I didn't have the daily headaches.  Because I'm still searching for a reason for my "why I feel like shit everyday feelings" I asked my doctor to test me for gluten intolerance.  Well, that test came back fine which is good because BREAD.  But my doctor did mention that a lot of my symptoms could be IBS related which is crappy (see what I did there?) on a whole other level.  I haven't seen my doctor since the gluten test, they post results online and call you, so I haven't delved deeper into the IBS thing but I'll do some research and see what happens.

Anyway, all of that and the wheat/sugar free thing didn't seem as important anymore, so I quit that.  I've been eating whole grain (more on that below) and have the same headaches and body aches as I did before so I'm sure that wheat/sugar is definitely not a friend.  I don't want to go wheat free all together because BREAD but I think there are some benefits to scaling back.  So....I was on a search for something new and manageable.

I have no idea how I ended up on the Beachbody website but I did.  It might have been an ad on Facebook.  I have known of Beachbody for years because I was introduced to it by my sister and own some of the programs but I never had the oomph to make it through a whole program before.  So, I was on the site and discovered the 21 Day Fix.  Other Beachbody programs have meal plans but none had the portion control containers so I was really intrigued.  I had heard other people talking about 21 Day Fix on health sites so I decided to do some additional research.  What I came up with is that 21 Day Fix is easy to follow, laid out step by step (you know exactly what to eat and how much) and it includes a workout program (which my doctor has been pestering me to start).

I ended up ordering the system on a Saturday and it arrived that Thursday.

At first I was a bit overwhelmed.  There were containers and food lists and daily workouts.  I didn't really think I could do it all.  BUT once I got myself organized it didn't seem all that bad.

I'm currently on day 6 and here is what I have noticed:

  • Easy to know what you should eat.  Mainly whole foods.  You can have "treats" 3 times a week.
  • Containers are great for teaching portion control and "eyeballing".
  • There is a wide variety of foods.
  • The workouts are 30 minutes long and doable.  You will work and you will be sore but I think anyone can do it.  Kat is my go to gal.  She is the modifier girl in the workouts.
  • You don't need much equipment for the workouts.
  • Autumn is great!  I think she might be my favorite trainer from Beachbody.
  • You get a ton of food.  This wouldn't be a problem in usual situations but eating a ton of whole foods is hard to do.  I have a hard time hitting my calorie and macro count.  I don't think I have hit it since I started
  • If you are new to workouts and eating well you will not lose weight the first week.  I didn't anyway.  This can be discouraging.  I had to really tell myself that I needed to keep going.  A lot of people tell you this is normal because your packing on a lot of muscle during the first week.  And your sore.  So you are retaining water like crazy and have inflamed muscles.
  • Planning ahead.  I suck at this so I find it a con.  If I can start planning ahead I think I'll be better.  Even after I'm done with this program because it is a big downfall for me.  Eating on the go is not a strong suit of mine.  I tend to make REALLY BAD decisions on the go.
I'm happy to have made it this far with the program.  I did miss one workout but other than that I've been doing everything as assigned.  I have big hopes for the next 2 weeks and can see that this program has the potential to teach health newbies how to eat well and exercise consistently.  It has given me a lot of determination.  I want to prove that I can do anything for 21 days and I hope that this will be my lifestyle changer.

Tips to succeed
  • Focus on building strength, as mentioned, the weight might not come off at first but you will notice your clothes fitting better.
  • Plan ahead.  Have meal planning Sundays.  Get your lunches ready for the week.  Get a notebook and write down what you will eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.  Get your food game strong!
  • Utilize the Facebook groups, Beachbody website message boards, your Beachbody coach, whoever will support you.  I was getting discouraged this morning and talked to my FB group and they made me realize that I just need to keep going.
I'll be back next week to update on my progress.  I think!

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Friday, January 1, 2016

Obligatory New Years Resolutions

Bye Bye 2015

I started working on the 2015 reflections a few days back and then ended up realizing that the reflections were actually going to gear toward small business owners and their advancements.  Soooo...I only reflected for two days but I think I still got the gist of what I needed to figure out. 

It really boils down to me wanting to get healthy and lose 50 pounds but not being willing to put in the work. Yea, there's that small detail.  Getting dicouraged when things don't happen quickly was also a theme. Having set backs basically made me give up in the past. And that negative self talk telling me I can't do it with a sprinkle of excuses keeps me from moving forward.

Now we are really early into the new year (day 1 to be exact) but I'm feeling pretty confident that I can do things differently this time around.  

Tools that I will be using to get to goal this year:
- staying in touch with blogs, FB accounts, IG'ers, etc. that I find inspirational.  And not just stalking, interacting.
- keeping the blog up to date as my accountability journal
- joining challenges (more on that below)
- keeping a food journal through MFP
- promise to myself that whatever workout program I start (currently PIYO) that I will finish it.
- small goals by the month, not daunting thoughts of "Omg, I have so much weight to lose its going to take me forever!" (<-- I think this always made me fail before)
- if one thing doesn't work, try another, just don't give up all together

I mention that one of my success tools is going to be keeping up with blogs, IG'ers, etc.  One of my biggest inspirations comes from following others on Instagram.  Seeing their food posts, weigh ins for a loss, workout snippets, and so on really gives me the push to try harder.  Many IG'ers with tons of followers also host different challenges. Yesterday I signed up for a Diet Bet with I Lost Big And So Can You.  She has lost just under 100 pounds with Weight Watchers. Her Diet Bet was $35 with the premise that I'll lose 4% of my body weight in the next 4 weeks.  If I lose it, I'll get my money back plus extra.  There will also be challenges and interactions throughout the bet.  I think that this Diet Bet might just be what I need to get started.  I could use extra makeup money and I just so happens that the bet would end right around my birthday. Perfect timing!

I think it's important to remember that I'll probably be hungry many nights.  I'll probably want to eat giant cheeseburgers and fries on occasion.  I'll definitely be sore from workouts since I've just been sitting on my ass for the last year. There will be tough days and roadblocks!  I'm not thinking that this is going to be easy but my job is to keep pushing forward, in small increments, to get to my ultimate goal. 

2016 Resolutions:
- lose 8 pounds by the end of January (new goal to be set at the beginning of February).
- be a better wife and mom by being more present and spending quality time with my people.
- make a work place change, grow my skills, speak up to get what I need.
- save money, get out of debt, and live a minimalistic life. Needs, not wants!

Looks like I have some work to do!  What are your resolutions?

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

December Beauty Favorites

I triple heart love blogs about makeup, hair and beauty products.  I follow a ton of them and my tastes are pretty mild but obsessed nevertheless.  One of my favorite things to do is peruse makeup blogs (and Pinterest boards <---check out my board) for the latest and greatest beauty items.  I also love to read the monthly beauty favorites some bloggers post sooo....I decided to try the same thing here. For fun and because I fing feel like it.  Enjoy.

Let's talk about some of these beauties!

Maskcara IIID Foundation pallet.  This thing is my ultimate favorite.  It is customizable with refillable magnetic pans.  I originally started out with the Sunlit foundation but it ended up being too yellow for my skin so I switched to White Peach.  I also have the Walnut contour, Honey highlighter and Pink Grapefruit blush (plus Jem and Dahlia).  This current combination is working out really well for me.  The brush is also awesome and makes application a breeze.  Check out this tutorial over at The Small Things Blog on how to apply this to perfection.  The only thing that would make this line better is if they put names on the back of the pans so I'd know what I need to re-order when I run out.

Tarte Showstopper and Tarte Tartlette pallets.  I never really went for the Tarte brand before but started getting interested when I recently saw some reviews for the Tartlette in Bloom pallet.  I ordered a Smashbox pallet when I had my $20 off of $50 at Sephora recently and ended up not liking the Smashbox pallet at all.  I went to my Sephora store with the intention of exchanging the Smashbox pallet for the Tartlette in Bloom but they were sold out so I settled (reluctantly) on the original Tartlette pallet. turned out that this pallet is becoming a fast favorite.  I'm currently into the no makeup, makeup look and I reach for this pallet over any of my Urban Decay Naked palettes daily.  I'm in LOVE!  The Showstopper pallet is also perfection.  I picked this one up on Black Friday and got the pallet for around $30.  I love it because it's an all in one pallet.  You have a contour shade, highlighter, blush and 6 beautiful shadows (matte and shimmer).  I have definitely been converted and am now a huge Tarte fan.  I'll definitely be picking up more items from this brand!

These items happen to be my favorite, used everyday, products.  The Maybelline Color Tattoo in Barely Branded is beautiful.  I use this by itself or under my powder shadow and it makes everything stay put, no primer needed.  The MAC single eyeshadow in Brun is excellent for eyebrows. Maskcara talks and blogs about this in nearly every tutorial as being the best eyebrow shadow and I have to agree.  It matches well and stays right were you apply it.  It also makes a great powder eyeliner.  The L'oreal La Lacque Lipstick in shade #201 is the perfect fall color.  It gives a nice berry stain with a bit (but not too much) shine.  I love that it doubles as a lip liner too.

Finally (and sorry for not having a separate pic of the cream) is the Philosophy Whipped Body Creme in Amazing Grace.  I've loved this fragrance for some time now.  I ordered the cream just to get my cart total to $50 at Sephora but it has turned out to be a good buy.  As I said, I love the fragrance, it lasts all day.  The cream itself is saving my dry skin right now, too.  (this one might be discontinued though...*tear)

I'd say that covers my absolute favorites for this past month.  Here are the things I have my eye on for January:

Living Proof Happy Hair Days Kit:  This kit has all the things I want to try from the line.  Perfect Hair Shampoo/Conditioner, 5 in 1 Styling treatment, Overnight Perfector and Dry Shampoo.  I keep hearing great things about this line but don't want to drop the big bucks (it's not cheap) until I know if the stuff is worth it.  This kit would let me try this stuff out first.

Tarte Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Full Coverage Foundation (why are these names so long?):  I already ordered this with a gift card I got for Christmas.  I had a sample that seemed to really work well so I bought the full size.  Can't wait to try it throughout January!  On another note, this item is probably the first item I bought based off of a sample.

I'd also love the Becca x Jaclyn Hill Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Champagne Pop and Becca Backlight Priming Filter but that's getting a little out of control.  These have both been on my list for months but I always end up going with something else when I order beauty items at Sephora. I'll eventually make up my mind to get these and then they will be discontinued (at least one is limited edition).  Wahhh!

Things I need recommendations on:

Anyone reading have a recommendation for a good primer?  Or a facial cleanser/toner that minimizes pores?

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Monday, December 28, 2015

Appreciating 2015 - Day Two

What was time wasted this year?
I wasted time on social media this year.  Sure I learned ALOT about things that I have no control over.  ALOT of things made me angry and dumbass posts made me want to slap the shit out of some people.  Emma did a art project for school recently.  The project was to draw a political depiction.  She drew two balloons (each representing the major political parties) flanking the world which was in the middle.  The next scene showed the balloons popping and multicolored confetti falling from the balloons.  Her third scene featured the world covered in confetti and the words "we are all the same inside we just have different opinions".  I'm really proud of her for coming up with this concept and it really showed me that it's just a matter of different opinions (although some people's opinions are  I need to stop wasting time caring about other people's opinions be it on social media, in face to face conversation, or anywhere else I might encounter them.  That's just major time wasted!

What was money wasted this year?
We have no savings fund.  If something goes wrong, we are fucked!  There was money wasted on stuff that I don't even think I have any more.  I wasted money on purchasing WW memberships, GPS watches for the running I don't do, clothes I thought were cute on the hanger but not on me, etc. etc. etc.  We work hard and have nothing to show for it but a bunch of stuff.  A major goal for the new year (along with getting a better paying job) is saving for a rainy day and putting money away for a down payment on a house.  Now THAT, would be money well spent and not wasted.

What was the biggest challenge you faced this year?
Definitely all of my health issues.  I spent the majority of this year getting bad news about my health or no news at all.  Not knowing why I feel bad has been challenging.  How do you address an issue when you don't even know what it is.  I've had a hard time wrapping my head around the issues I know of too.  Accepting that I have diabetes has been hard.  And knowing that this is what is going to end up killing me (a strong possibility that the degeneration from this disease will do me in!) is for some reason so hard for me to take.  You would think that everything I know and have seen in regards to this disease would make me straighten up, it hasn't. 

If anything, what would you change about how you handled that challenge?
I would go back in time when I was first warned by my doctor that if I didn't change my lifestyle I would end up with full blown diabetes.  That was close to 11 years ago when I had my son. 

Are you ending the year with any unfinished business?
Don't I end every year with unfinished business?  I didn't lose the weight.  I didn't advance my career (or at the least my paycheck).  I haven't been a better mom/wife/friend.

Are there any outstanding goals you’d like to let go of?
No.  The goals I had, I still have for the new year.  I'm not letting go of them.  In fact, I will be working harder than ever to meet my goals in 2016.

What was your worst setback in 2015?
Health issues, for sure.  This has been my worst year of feeling bad.  I woke up many days with no real motivation to even get up.  There were days when I felt so bad that I just let everything slide.  I had no drive to better myself.  I accepted that I was just not worth fighting for and I had to work extremely hard to turn those thoughts around.  My kids need me.  My husband needs me.  I'm worth fighting for.

Which bad habits or unhealthy patterns did you engage in that you’d like to give up once and for all?
Being sedentary.  Eating badly.  Spending more time with the online world than the people I love and care for.

What or whom held you back this year? Did anything make you shrink into yourself or feel defensive about your dreams?
I held myself back.  When you really consider this question, you are the only one that can really hold yourself back and it's up to you to go for it.  I have held on to years of resentment and blame for the way I grew up.  It doesn't even matter anymore and I can't go back and change things from the past.  The only option is to move forward and change the future.  I can't continue to think that I'm not worth it or that I'm not capable.  I can do all things I set my mind to no matter who or what gets in the way.  If you block me, get ready to get run over this coming year.

How did you hold yourself back this year? Which beliefs | ideas | excuses stopped you from pushing forward?
I believed that I was not smart enough to make things happen.  My beliefs were that others always had more talent, resources and ability to pass me by.  I believed that my body wasn't capable of changing for the better.  I thought that it was too hard to make changes to be healthier and that it isn't even worth it.  I know now that it IS hard but it ISN'T impossible.

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