Wednesday, February 18, 2015

What I'm Loving Wednesday.

Happy Wednesday!  This morning, I'm at home with my cup of tea looking out over my snowy, white yard.  It's my second day working from home, so I barely remembered it was Wednesday!  Fortunately, I did come out of my snow fog to remember to link up with Rachel and Jodi to talk about what I'm loving this week.

Snow days-- I know that a lot of the country is sick of snow, but here in NC, this is our first taste of it this winter!  And I couldn't have been happier about two days at home in the middle of the week.  I wish we got a little more snow and less ice to make my picture prettier, but oh well...
Harney & Sons Earl Grey-- I've been drinking a lot of hot tea lately, and this one is my favorite.  I can't stop drinking it!  I like mine with a little sugar and lemon, and it's absolutely perfect.  
Also check out the teacup that Donny bought me for Valentine's Day!
Dove Invigorating Dry Shampoo-- I've tried a few different types of dry shampoo, some expensive and some not. But this Dove dry shampoo is hands-down the best!  It leaves no white residue, and is only $4!  Not only does it soak up the oils, but it adds volume to my hair.  Even my fourth-day hair looks fantastic thanks to this!  LOVE.
Weight Watchers-- As you guys know, I've tried to eat paleo since my first Whole30 last January.  What you really don't know is that I failed at eating paleo more than I succeeded.  During my three Whole30s, there were several breaks of protocol until I just quit the last one because I wasn't close to following it.  For the last year, I would eat strictly for a period of time and then binge on whatever I wanted (usually Zaxby's and cupcakes...).  So, after a year of being on and off the wagon constantly, I decided to go back to what has worked for me in the past-- WeightWatchers.  It's a totally different  food philosophy than paleo, but it's so much easier for me to manage.  I still really believe the science behind why paleo is the superior choice, but I just didn't have the discipline to stick with it consistently.  Having the structure of WW makes it so much easier for me to stick to.  I've already seen success on the scale in the last few weeks!
UNC/Duke Gameday-- Tonight my Tar Heels will make the eight mile journey to Durham to play the Duke Blue Devils.  It's one of the two biggest games of the year, and I'm so excited for it!

Hope you're all having a great week!

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Monday, February 9, 2015

Weekend Recap.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention that three years ago today, I walked off a plane at Love Field where Donny stood in baggage claim with an engagement ring.  It was one of the biggest and best surprises of my life, and I'm loving that I get to spend the rest of my life with my best friend.

But back to this past weekend...  Friday, I made the decision to cut more than 5 inches off my hair!  It hasn't been this short in years, and I'm kind of loving it.  It took me less than 20 minutes to dry/style my hair after washing it yesterday morning, when before it took almost an hour.  LOVE.
Friday night, we went to dinner with April and her fiance Dave.  I'm so glad that I've been hanging out with April and Jen more recently.  We went months without seeing each other at the end of last year, but we've seen each other every other weekend for the last several.  I couldn't be happier to be reviving those friendships.  

Saturday, I don't think I even went outside, which is a little sad because it was such a nice day.  But I stayed in and read my books and watched some Justified.  I'm listening to Pronto and physically reading The Typewriter Girl.  And I've got to say that I'm having trouble loving them both.  Pronto is a little slow at the moment, and The Typewriter Girl is just so difficult to read and comprehend.  I'm looking forward to finishing both of them.

Sunday was my grandmother's birthday, so we all had lunch out and went back to her house for birthday cake!  You'd never guess that she's nearing 80 years old...

Sunday night, I watched the Grammys.  I don't remember when I started watching awards shows, but apparently I do now.  The Grammys are always great because the music is SO good and not as crazy as other shows.  And I was impressed last night.  

First of all-- the fashion.  One great thing about the Grammys is that you get more creative dresses than, say, The Oscars or Golden Globes.  But again, nothing outrageous like the VMAs.  Cutouts were clearly this year's trend, as was seen on many dresses.  These were some of my favorites of the night:

Clockwise from top left:  Iggy Azalea, Kat Graham, TSwift, and Katy Perry.
I'm not a Taylor Swift fan, but her dress was fantastic.  And Katy Perry's red carpet purple bob with that sparkly long-sleeved dress-- gorgeous.  Iggy's blue column dress with the strategic cutouts made her look curvy and fabulous.  Loved Kat Graham's whimsical and fun but sexy gown.  

Despite the music numbers being mostly slow ballads, they were all also fantastic numbers.  Some of my favorites were Katy Perry, who took a huge risk, replacing her signature fun and flash for one of the most powerful vocal performances of the night on "By the Grace of God."
Seriously-- Adam Levine can do no wrong.  Moving past some horribly off-key misses from Gwen Stefani, their duet "My Heart is Open" was wonderfully emotional and beautiful.
And the best of the night went to John Legend and Common's duet of "Glory," which gave me goosebumps.  John Legend is one of the most gifted musicians of our time, and the combination with Common's uncommon (no pun intended) rap style is nothing short of powerful.  
But the night belonged to Sam Smith, who truly deserved it with all the quality, beautiful music that he created last year.  Good for him.

How was your weekend?

Thursday, February 5, 2015

January Beauty Favorites.

1. MAC Amplified Creme Lipstick in Blankety-- My sister-in-law wears this all the time, and it looks so fantastic on her.  So of course, I had to pick up my own tube.  It's very, very nude and works great with a more dramatic eye look.  

2. bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie Lipgloss in Stunner-- My mom got me a sampler pack of these lip glosses for Christmas, and I am so glad she did!  This lip gloss is probably one of the most perfect formulas out there.  It's moisturizing, highly pigmented, and not very sticky.  I love this color too-- over a bright lipstick, it gives a nice fuchsia sheen.  Over just your naked lips, it's a beautiful pink wash that's not too bright and not too nude.  Gorgeous.

3. MAC Fluidline gel eyeliner in Blitz and Glitz-- After months of wearing almost nothing but eyeshadow as eyeliner, I pulled out my MAC Fluidline gel eyeliner for some reason.  And I remembered why I loved it before.  It stays put like nothing else.  I put my eyeshadow on top of it because black is usually darker than the look I'm going for, and it works like a charm!

4. MAC Face and Body foundation--  I know, I know.  I literally JUST wrote about how much I love the Urban Decay Naked Skin foundation.  But almost immediately after writing it, I got restless with my old standby.  After sampling several different foundations, I tried this one after rave reviews from Karen at Makeup and Beauty Blog.  And it's fabulous.  It gives good but not heavy coverage, a dewy finish, and is $35 for 4oz!  The Urban Decay is $30 for only 1 ounce!  $35 for 4 ounces puts it around the same price point as drugstore brands.  It's a steal.

5. NYX Wonder Stick-- I've been contouring with bronzer and a powder highlighter for a while, but I love the simplicity of this dual-ended stick.  Just swipe it on where you want the dark and light colors, then buff!  I love that the darker color is not at all orangey-- it's a perfect shade for me.  

6. MAC Lustre Lipstick in Milan Mode--  This was a total impulse buy at the MAC counter a few weeks ago.  It's way brighter than I usually wear on my lips, but I kind of love it!  I still am not very comfortable with such a bright color, but I'm getting there.  

What are your favorite recent beauty products that I need to try??

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

What I'm Loving Wednesday.

I'm so glad that Rachel and Jodi decided to bring back this linkup!  It was always a good mid-week way to catch up with folks.  Thanks ladies!  Here's what I'm loving this week...

Audiobooks-- I used to never read audiobooks because I couldn't pay attention to them, so I ended up missing so much.  But after reading this post from The Modern Mrs. Darcy, I really wanted to give them another shot.  So I got Reconstructing Amelia, hoping that the suspense would keep my ears and attention glued to it.  And it worked!  I loved being able to "read" in the car or when I was cooking, when I ordinarily can't read.  I just got Pronto by Elmore Leonard from the library and can't wait to get into it.

Trivia Crack-- I'm a little late to the Trivia Crack bandwagon, but I'm loving it!  It's like jeopardy that I get to play with my friends.  What's not to love??

Sugar Pig-- Omg. I can't believe that Sugar Pig hasn't shown up on my blog yet.  I'm obsessed with this instagram account of these baby pigs!!  There's a whole litter (are pigs in litters??) of baby pigs, and their owners post the most adorable pictures.  You have to go check them out.

Justified-- With the series finale of Justified starting last month, I decided that I had to watch the series from the beginning again.  I love the characters of Raylan Givens and Boyd Crowder.  Their interactions are just so, so witty and snappy.  I seriously want to re-watch their scenes after they are over.  The supporting cast is written just as witty and fantastic.  I'm very sad to see this show end, but I'm loving my time watching it all from the beginning.

MAC Cosmetics-- I've really been on a MAC kick recently, which you'll read about more tomorrow during my January beauty favorites post.  Their products are such good quality at a much lower price than most of the Sephora brands.  Lipstick, foundation, blush, eyeshadow... I'm loving it all lately.

What are YOU loving today?  Come and link up with Rachel and Jodi!  

Monday, February 2, 2015

Super Bowl Weekend.

This weekend was fantastic!  Friday night, Donny and I went to our favorite Japanese hibachi place for dinner, which was DELICIOUS.  After dinner, we spent a lovely evening wandering around Barnes and Noble and then trying to track down a Patriots shirt for me before giving up and heading home.  We did find gas for only $1.85, which is just insane, and also some weird sodas that I wasn't adventurous enough to try...

Saturday, Donny worked in the garage turning Craigslist junk into a nice piece of furniture!
I was far less productive, spending my day finishing two books (both of which had been started earlier in the week) and working on a third, which I finished today.
I also watched Serena win the Australian Open, which made me pretty happy.  Otherwise, it was not a good sports day with Carolina losing and Duke winning...

Then Sunday was Super Bowl day!  After church and watching Djokovic winning the Australian Open, I spent the afternoon cooking and cleaning because my parents were coming over to watch the game with us.  Between my mom and me, we had a pretty good spread.  Taco pizza rolls, buffalo chicken dip, ham and swiss sliders, gooey oreo bars, and chocolate dipped fruit.  So delicious!
My kitchen island works really well as a mobile buffet table!
I was really excited that my family decided to pull for my Patriots in the game because they love me.  Donny even got himself a pin to show his support!
It was a bit of a stressful game for me since I actually cared about who won, but what an ending.  There was definitely screaming when Malcom Butler made the interception that won the game.  And lots of happiness when I saw this happen...

Hope everyone else's weekend was as great as mine!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

12 Life Lessons from The Bachelor.

I can't believe that I haven't blogged about The Bachelor at all this season!  I'm actually kind of annoyed with it, but I just can't stop watching.  And last night's episode was just begging for a blog post.  

I didn't want to do a recap, since those who will read this post probably already watched the episode.  But I did learn some fascinating things last night from these women, so I thought we should all benefit from their knowledge...


1. If you're going to pretend to like an activity for your man, make sure to laugh maniacally. A lot.

2. Michigan has the best lakes. California lakes are "hell holes."

3. Skinny dipping is the way to a man's... heart? 

4. The best way to tell a guy you're a virgin is by pouncing on him while he's sleeping.

5. Pack a razor when you're going on TV in tiny clothes.

6. Always, always, always get in good with the sisters. They might hook you up with some Louboutins and diamond earrings.

7. Don't count your Disney princess dresses before Prince Charming calls. 

8. Sometimes the girl who finishes first isn't the winner.

9. Boys like girls with plans other than working out for 8 hours a day.

10. If your date is boring or won't shut up, let your mind wander to other pleasant things to cope.

11. Boys don't like girls who berate them for dating and lusting after all their friends.

12. But if you're pretty enough, you can get away with most anything.

Anything that I missed??  Do share!
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