Valentine’s Gift Guide

In just a few short weeks it’ll be Valentine’s Day! I can’t believe how fast January went by. It feels like we were just celebrating Christmas and the holidays.

Since it’s time to get shopping for your loved ones, I’m sharing some of my favorite gift ideas for the girls and guys in your life. I’ve found that Valentine’s Day gifts aren’t necessarily about how much money you spend, it’s more about the thought and creativity that goes into it.

Stocking Stuffer Gifts Under $30

Stocking Stuffers
It’s officially only one month until Christmas which means it’s time to kick it into high gear with your holiday shopping. While I always ask my family what they want for Christmas, I always like to surprise some of my closest friends with little gifts in their mailboxes. Here are some of my favorite stocking stuffers to give that are perfect for any gal pal in your life!
1. Bath & Body Works Shea Infused Socks :: $7.50
These are the perfect accessory to wear while snuggling on the couch. The socks are shea infused and are so soft and warm. Not only will you keep your feet snuggled up but you’ll help to keep them soft too! I love all the fun designs BBW comes out with these in each holiday.
2. Francesca’s Pretty Fabulous Frame :: $26
Print out a picture of you with your bestie and put it into this frame for an awww-worthy gift!
3. Francesca’s I Shine Water Bottle :: $18
Why not make drinking water more stylish by giving this sparkly water bottle? I’m all about anything with rhinestones or sparkles so this is a perfect gift to give one of your stylish friends.
4. Reindeer Coffee Sleeve :: $9.50
I can’t even handle how adorable these coffee sleeves are! These are from Catherine Mason and are the cutest things I have ever seen. If you have a coffee loving bestie, then this is the perfect gift for her to make her next cup a little more festive! There are TONS of other ones to choose from including a bow, penguin and even a donut one that I currently have my eye on!
5. Philosophy Cake Me Set :: $26
Philosophy always has some of the yummiest smelling fragrances. This cupcake set is the perfect little gift for anyone!
6. OPI Trend on Ten :: $27.50
Like I mentioned in last week’s beauty gift guide, I just love all of the beauty sets that come out this time of the year. This OPI set has ten different nail polishes so you get a good variety of colors that will help your bestie out the next time she gets a manicure.
7. Zara Checked Scarf :: $29.90
It shouldn’t surprise you that almost every girl in America wants one of these insta-famous plaid scarves. Keep your eyes peeled all over because TONS of places have them available in lots of different colors now.
8. Francesca’s Owl Sleep Mask :: $18
Owls are just cute on about anything and this sleep mask is no different!
9. Checkmate Miniemergency Kit :: $18
Have a friend who keeps everything but the kitchen sink in her purse? Get her this miniemergency kit  to make sure that she’s prepared for any little emergency that may pop up!
10. Alex and Ani Bracelet :: $24
To me, there is nothing better than wearing a piece of jewelry everyday that has meaning behind it. This bracelet which is called ‘Open Love’ is sure to make your bestie smile each time she wears it.
QUESTION // What things do you like to see in your stocking?

Holiday Gift Guide :: Beauty Gifts For Her

I can hardly believe that it’s already time to start holiday shopping! With Christmas only 5 weeks away, it’s time to start getting gifts ready for under the tree. Over the next couple of weeks, I’m going to be sharing some gift guides with you all. I’m wanting to hit a few different gift guide groups including athletes/runners, the traveler, stocking stuffers, fashion and gifts for him.

First up today, gifts for the beauty lover in your life. I especially love to shop at Sephora and Ulta during the holidays because it’s the best time of the year to shop for beauty gifts. Both stores always have amazing value sets which means you can get great gifts for a great value. Or, if you’re like me, it’s a perfect time to try out some new products that you’ve had on your wish list for awhile.

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This is a great gift for any makeup lover. This train case is big and durable and has lots of compartments to organize your makeup.
A Clarisonic is an essential to have in your skincare routine. It gently exfoliates your skin to help keep it soft and glowing. I received one for Christmas a few years ago and I still use it regularly.
My husband bought me this a few years ago for Christmas and I love it! If you know someone who loves to get their nails done, this is a perfect gift for them. While doing gel nails might seem hard, this kit from Mally makes doing a gel manicure at home so easy.
This is a kit I also bought a few years ago and Sephora brings it back each year. I love this kit because it features all of the bestsellers at Sephora and it features items from a variety of different makeup categories. This to me is the essential makeup kit and I use mine as a travel/emergency touchup kit in my work bag.
I think getting your hair done is one of the most relaxing and pampering things a girl can do for herself. With this kit, you can do your own blowout at home and have great looking hair everyday!
6. Trish McEvoy Makeup Planner Timeless Beauty : $235
I’ve previously talked about how I love love love the Trish McEvoy Makeup Planner. This kit is a great all in one gift that includes not only the planner, in the most perfect leopard pattern might I add, but also includes some makeup to include in your new makeup bag.
I just love this Sephora Favorites line. Just like the Superstars kit above, there are a variety of other kits that feature select products or items that make up a collection. Since I’m a lip product junkie, I love that this kit features all different lip formulas and colors. I’m hoping Santa brings me this for Christmas!
Whenever I want to pamper myself with a spa night at home, I use one of the GlamGlow masks. While they are pricey face masks, this set is a great value because you get three different masks to try out in one package. But trust me, they’re totally worth it because your skin looks AMAZING afterwards!
Bobbi Brown has been one of my all-time favorite makeup artists. During the holidays, she always comes out with palettes that are so classy and beautiful. This is a palette that has been around for a few years and not only do I love the packaging, but these are great neutral shades that would be perfect in anyone’s makeup collection.
To me, Sigma brushes are the best ones to use. I have this kit that I use not only when I travel but on an everyday basis. This kit would be a great gift idea for someone just starting to get into makeup or for someone who travels a lot. It includes all of the essential brushes you need, plus the case it comes in doubles as a brush holder.
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QUESTION // What’s your favorite makeup item to shop for?

Disclaimer :: Some of the links above do contain affiliate links. All opinions and thoughts are my own :) 

Time For A Fresh Start

Hey remember me!

Blog..it’s been on my to do list for weeks. But when I come home from a long day of work where I just stared at a computer screen for 8+ hours, the last thing I’ve wanted to do was sit down with my laptop and stare at a screen again. Watching Full House and Friends while I snuggle on the couch with my husband and fur babies seemed like a much better idea.

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Until now. One of my resolutions for the New Year was to get back into blogging on a regular basis. Writing has always been a passion of mine and I’m looking forward to getting back into it. Expect a variety of posts from me..from running and makeup to fashion to recipes and everything in between!

So first up…my New Year’s resolutions! I have some new goals and changes to make this new year. Some I’ve already succeeded at and others I’ve failed at. I plan on taking a day at the end of each month to recap where I’m at with my resolutions and see how I’m working towards my goals.

//Blog More

//Spend less time playing on my iPad and social media each night

//Incorporate more Yoga into my workout habits

//Become a faster runner

//Cut back on my clothes/makeup shopping habit

//Cut back on my sweets eating habit

//Focus on eating more fruits and veggies.

What goals are you working towards this year? 

 

Happy New Year!

I hope you all had a safe and fabulous New Year! Mr. B and I aren’t fans of New Year’s so we spent the night at home cuddled on the couch with our favorite pup!

As always, I’ve made some New Year’s resolutions and I’m really going to try to stick to them this year. Here are a few things I’m hoping to get accomplished in 2012.

  • Read more!
    • When I was younger one of my most favorite things to do was read. Once college started, reading for fun went right down the drain. I’m hoping to read at least one book per month. I think if I get into the routine of reading before I go to bed, that might bring back my interest in it. 
  • Save more money
    • If it were up to me, I’d go shopping every day and always have a new outfit to wear. As realistic as I’d like to make that to be, I probably should save more and spend less. We’ll see how well I actually do on this one. 
  • Working out more
    • Lately I fell off the working out bandwagon. Waking up at 5 am can be super hard to get to the gym but I know I just need to get back into my daily routine. Along with working out, I’ll be running two half marathons later this year which I’m anxious about. I also have a goal to eat less sweets. I love love love to bake and if it were up to me, I’d eat dessert after EVERY meal. I’m really trying to cut back on this habit! I also want to start getting back into yoga. I used to go once a week at my gym, but they cancelled the class I used to go to and their other classes just don’t fit my schedule. I have a few yoga DVD’s so I really want to force myself to do it at least once a week. I know it’ll be good for my flexibility and stretching, especially with my half marathon training.
What are your New Year’s goals?!

Getting back on the blog bandwagon…

I swear I’m going to stick to one of my New Year’s resolutions of getting back to blogging..
I know I’m a few days..almost 12 to be exact..behind but hey, better late than never…
So, starting tomorrow, I’m back in action in blogland..woop woop!

Black Friday

Every year, I look forward to Thanksgiving. It’s one of my favorite holidays of the year. Some people on the other hand are more excited about the day after Thanksgiving shopping. I was never one of those kind of folk until today..
Just a few days ago, my mom and I both said that there’s nothing in the world that we needed so badly that we’d be at the mall before dawn taking advantage of the door buster deals. However, before Thanksgiving dinner last night, we paged through the ads and couldn’t believe some of the deals. They were too good to pass up….so yes, mom and I treked it out to the mall at 4:30 a.m.
Surprisingly, the mall was not that crowded at 5 a.m. when we got there. The Wal-Mart we passed on the way there however, that was a different story with a full parking lot. Mom and I hit our favorite stores, snatching up to 40% off our total purchase for the day at each stop. For two shopaholics like us, we couldn’t say no.
By 7 a.m. we headed to another mall, came back home then treked back out at 10 a.m. When we went back at 10, now that was a horrible time to go…tons of people which means super hard time trying to find parking. Moral of the story, get there early on. Yes, it’s early but you can be done early enough to go home and head back to bed.
I never understood why it was so important to grab such deals that early in the morning when I’d much rather be snuggled in bed. But, when I saw the great deals you can get on items that hardly ever go on sale, well then I couldn’t say no.
I think mom and I might have found a new holiday tradition…

Voting from your couch..

I can do pretty much anything I want from the comfort of my couch with my laptop.

I can book a trip..work from home..watch a tv show..shop..look for recipes…the possibilities are endless..

But we still have to go and vote at a polling place.

With the way technology has evolved over the years you would think by now that there’s a way to vote from the comfort of your own computer.

I know it doesn’t take long to go vote since there’s no lines to wait in since voter turn out is extremely low..but after observing the way I have to tell them my name, they write it down etc. it seems (dare I say it) barbaric.

It makes me wonder what the future of voting is and if things will ever change to keep up with technology. I personally think it might help to move to an online voting system as it might get more people to vote. Although we will always have the issue of uneducated voters as well.

Do you think voting should move online? Will it increase votership?

All the stockings were hung by the chimney with care…

It’s November..for some people, that means it’s ok to already start listening to Christmas music. Others are nowhere near ready for the holiday season that is fast approaching.
It seems every year Christmas decorations come out earlier and earlier in the stores. I saw some out at Garden Ridge back at the end of July! Typically though, it seems that department stores start their decorations around the beginning of October and go full force right before Halloween.
For my family, it was our “rule” that Christmas decorations go up right after Thanksgiving and come down around New Year’s. Since I’ve been on my own the past two years with holiday decorating in my own house, I don’t have a ton of things like my parents do..but I have my fair share of Christmas decorations.
Last year from November through March, I went through real estate hell. I spent all of December in a hotel while my stuff was in storage..moved back home and lived with only a mattress on the floor, a tv and boxes spread among me for the next 4 months. Needless to say, I didn’t put out any Christmas decorations last year…
This past weekend, I found my Christmas decorations and I got so excited to put them out since I really had not seen them in almost two years. It doesn’t feel like the holiday season yet to me…the warmer than usual temperatures and no snow on the ground are contributing to that. I am anxious to put my few items out, but feel I can’t until Thanksgiving….
So, what’s your rule on holiday decorations? Are you a Scrooge or anxiously await by the chimney for Santa Claus?

Happy Halloween!

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Hope everyone had a great Halloween! To be honest, I’ve never been a fan of the holiday. Growing up, anything in a costume scared me..and they still do! Don’t ever let a clown or mascot get near me because I’m a bit terrified of them..

I was all set for trick or treaters tonight and not even one showed up on my doorstep! I couldn’t believe it! Good thing I’ve been snacking on the candy all week…now I have to finish up the bag!