Saturday, May 23, 2015

May's Ipsy Glam Bag - Review

This is my first month receiving an Ipsy Glam Bag. I signed up because I love trying new products and I'll use any excuse to do so.

What is Ipsy?

A monthly subscription ($10 US - plus shipping if you live in Canada)for a makeup bag with product samples (sometimes the 'samples' are actually full-sized products). You can cancel at any time so there's no long-term commitment (I was a big fan of this aspect, just in case I'm not receiving products I like).

My May Ipsy Glam Bag:

The actual bag: I love makeup bags, always have, but I suspect I'll run out of things to do with them when I'm receiving one a month. Regardless, this is super cute.

Briogeo - Rosarco Milk Reparative Leave-in Conditioning Spray - I am always a little nervous about leave-in conditioners because I have tried some that leave my hair looking like I haven't washed it. I am happy to report that was not the case with this one! I sprayed a few times following washing and using regular conditioner. It left my hair soft but still clean and smelling nice. Full-size products are available at Sephora. 

Urban Decay - Revolution Lip Pencil and bonus high-color lipgloss  - this primer lip pencil went on really nice and definitely gave the lipgloss some staying power. In fact, I tried the Bittersweet color (purple) and it stayed put. Plus, the gloss remained quite shiny. I don't think I'd actually wear the Bittersweet color but some of the other colors might be added to my lipgloss rotation. I will absolutely use the primer pencil under my other lip colors.

Amie - Matte-finish moisturiser creme  - initially, this product was much more fragrant than I am used to, especially for use on my face. I have super sensitive skin so I was worried it was going to cause a reaction. It's a nice smell but kind of strong; however, this feels great on my skin and I didn't react at all to it (woohoo). It looks like it's a product out of the UK though and I can't easily see where I'd be able to purchase in Canada so that's kind of a downer.

Luxie - tapered blending brush - super soft blending brush. I haven't been doing any intense makeup looks but I highly suspect this brush would be perfect for helping create a smoky-eye look for a night out! 

Bellapierre - Gel Eye Liner in Ebony - this full-sized eye-liner retails for 14.99 so pretty much makes this month's glam bag cost-efficient plus I LOVE it. I'm used to my MAC eye-liner and I have to say that this gel liner goes on super smooth but doesn't smudge. It last all day on my upper lash line and comes off easily with eye makeup remover.

All in all I'm very pleased with my first Glam Bag and even more excited to try more stuff next month. I'll continue to use most of the products (minus the purple lip gloss) until they run out so it was worth the $10 plus shipping I paid.

And here's proof I tried the purple lip gloss:

To sign up for Ipsy follow this link.

Note: if you sign up through my Ipsy referral links I earn points to put towards free products.

DON'T forget, there's still time to sign up for the GYPO Summer Style Challenge!! Click the HERE or the banner below to get in while you can!
If you have no idea what I'm talking about, check out this post.

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Summer Style Challenge - registration NOW open!!

Each new season brings another Style Challenge care of Alison @ Get Your Pretty On (GYPO) and the summer challenge registration is NOW open!

If you haven't yet heard of these "style challenges" I'll quickly enlighten you:

- You sign up - registration is between today, May 22, and May 28 (registration is technically open until June 3 BUT if you get in before the 28th it'll save you $$)
- Shopping list is released June 4. The shopping list is complete with all the items you'll need for 21 days of outfits and includes pictures, shopping info and all kinds of substitutions. Also, I can guarantee you'll already own at least a few items on the list (so you won't have to spend a fortune).
- the night of June 13th you'll get emailed the outfit for the following day (and receive nightly emails for the rest of the challenge telling you what to wear the next day).

PLUS Alison is throwing in two bonuses this time around including access the Summer 2014 challenge AND a 14 piece/10 day vacation packing list made up from the summer 2015 challenge pieces!

Why do I love these challenges so much? Whether your clueless about fashion or always on trend, the challenges really help you focus your shopping and work on mixing and matching your wardrobe. You can spend as much or as little as you want. The list always includes items you already have but also some more trendy items (which, depending on your comfort, you can always opt out of). THEN there's the best part, the other participants! You're bound to foster some new friendships as well as confidence in the VERY active Facebook group.

If you're interested in seeing some of the past challenges and how I interpreted them, you can find all my Style Challenge related posts HERE.

I'm obviously signing up, but may save some of my shopping until later in the summer when I'm no longer in maternity garb! lol that's if I can hold out that long... should we start taking bets now?!

SIGN UP HERE today and join in on the fun!!

**by signing up through the links posted, I do receive compensation so THANK YOU!**

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

what I wore - turquoise necklace and print skirt

At 31 weeks pregnant I am all about comfort but would prefer not to sacrifice style completely. I've learned quickly that one of the easiest ways to add style to an outfit is by finding the perfect accessory.

This past week I have been terrible at taking pictures but I wanted to show you and outfit I wore and the gorgeous accessory I wish I had been able to wear with it (I substituted with a similar, already owned but not nearly as fabulous piece).

First, the inspiration for my outfit is this absolutely stunning vintage turquoise necklace. This actual piece is an original and is up for auction at Invaluable. Invaluable is the world's premiere online marketplace that features all kinds of unique jewelry, antiques and collectibles. If you're looking for some truly original accessories, you can find them on the Jewelry auction page!

Now, for the comfort factor. You already know how I feel about maxi skirts and dresses. In case you forgot: maxi-anything = socially acceptable pjs. Basically, a pregnant woman's dream. When I saw this super cute printed maxi skirt, I knew I had to have it! Also, it just so happens to match perfectly with the turquoise necklace (both my dream one and the actual one I wore).

Next, the top. I opted for a plain white t-shirt. You really can't go wrong with a plain t-shirt. Plus, with the fancy necklace and print skirt I wanted to keep the rest of the outfit fairly simple. Then there's the fact that this particular shirt is very comfortable (read: stretchy).

Last, but certainly not least, the SHOES!!! I found these low-wedge gladiators at Payless and am kind of in love. They're a comfort brand, which usually means 'not very cute' but these are adorable. Cute + comfortable = very happy momma to be!

Hopefully this helps give you some kind of a visual of one of my new favorite maternity outfits. I will try and repeat this outfit and get an actual picture taken so you can see how it all looks together on yours truly. 

Linking up with these lovelies this week:

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Friday, May 15, 2015

travel recommendations - the babymoon

the Babymoon

It seems to be a rite of passage prior to the arrival of a baby,  particularly your first baby: the Babymoon.

The idea of a babymoon is one last 'hurrah' as a couple. The celebration of your relationship and the farewell to your child-free status.

So what do you do on a babymoon? Here are some things to consider:

What do you want out of your babymoon?

Realistically, a babymoon is just a good excuse to plan some intentional time together as a couple. Perhaps you're already really good at making a point to do this, if so, don't stress about a babymoon (unless of course you want another excuse for more one-on-one time, in that case: go for it!). Also, if this is something you're already doing, DON'T STOP when baby arrives.

If you're like the rest of us, a babymoon is a great opportunity for you to spend some time together doing something you both want to do but might not otherwise have the chance to do. I'm thinking some deliberate relaxation, baby shopping, enjoyment of the outdoors... the options are essentially endless. The BIGGEST thing is to figure out what you BOTH want in a babymoon, this conversation will help will all the rest of the planning.

How pregnant are you?

This is going to impact planning greatly. If you're getting close to that 8/9 month mark, you're going to probably want to stay relatively close to home just in case and your mobility may be limited as well.

Ideally, if you're hoping for an action-packed babymoon, you'll want to plan for the 6/7 month mark so that you (hopefully) aren't dealing with the physical discomfort that often accompanies the third trimester.

How much do you want to spend?

Another huge factor to consider. Perhaps, you've got money to burn and a destination babymoon is right for you. That's lovely; however, this won't be the case for everyone.

There are a TON of options for every budget it just requires some creativity of you and your partner.

Babymoon Ideas

If plane travel is still an option for you (depending on how far along you are) and if you have a heafty budget, your options are endless. Fly somewhere amazing for a few nights and enjoy. The rest of us will be jealous.

For those looking for something a little more budget-friendly, here are some ideas:

Beach weekend - depending on where you live this could be a day trip or and overnight one. If you're close to the beach, you could plan a day trip. Sun, sand, relaxation. Partner tip: if your lady might be missing the cocktails, come up with a fun virgin drink to enjoy during your picnic!

Camping - if you like the outdoors and the weather is right, this could be the babymoon for you! Cost effective, potentially very secluded and ideally lots of peace and quiet.

Spa - think couple's massages, facials and pedicures in those fancy chairs! Yes PLEASE! You could even plan a home-spa experience if you're trying to be kinder to your bank account.

Be a tourist in your own city - every city/town has those tourist destinations that everyone knows about but that typically the 'locals' don't go to. Pretend to tour your city as if you've never seen it before. Have you been to the museum? The parks? Try a restaurant that's been around forever but that maybe you haven't been to yet.

Sports - do you love baseball? hockey? football? Get some tickets and enjoy a game-day together. Sure, you can bring babies/children to the games, but it's a little different, a little more high-maintenance if you will.

Visit a city nearby - there has to be a city within driving distance that you've never been to or haven't spent a lot of time in and that has some fun tourist things to do.

Food, food and more food - this could be as budget friendly or as extravagant as you choose. Spend a day enjoying food. Use this as an opportunity to spend some time cooking together and enjoying the finished product OR eat out a few meals and revel in having someone cook and clean after you (and you'll soon be taking on that role for a little one!).

Whatever it is you decide to do, make it special and memorable. Try and get a little relaxation in and enjoy each other's company as much as possible.

Did you take a babymoon? Any memories or regrets?

Is there an awesome babymoon option not on the list?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

what I wore - May 13, 2015

Confession: I'm starting to get to the point where I don't really feel 'cute' pregnant and instead am starting to feel massive. This is going to make taking, posing for and posting pictures much  more challenging for me. 

I am also remembering that during the third trimester your body prepares you for the lack of sleep that is inevitable with a newborn which means I'm not sleeping a ton. Clearly, I'm not exactly looking super refreshed and full of life BUT I'm still posting so that's something.

Here's how I've been dressing the bump this past week:

Not the most flattering pic of me; however, big points for comfort factor alone. I may or may not have professed my love for maxis in general, but they're seriously a go-to for the pregnant lady. It's a definite possibility that I will wear maxi dresses for the majority of the remainder of my pregnancy. Just sayin'.

I liked this outfit, it seemed like the perfect combo of comfy and cute. In hindsight, I was over confident about my ability to wear wedges for breakfast and a shopping trip. Needless to say, I didn't shop nearly as long as I could of due to inappropriate footwear. The fact that I am up 20lbs and was carrying around a toddler half the time likely didn't help. This momma was very thankful to have thought ahead and stashed my birkenstocks in the car because I couldn't get those wedges off fast enough lol

There's those tired eyes I'm getting used to. Well, at least I tried to compensate with some bright colors. That has got to count for something.

See how much more awake I look with sunglasses on?! You can barely tell I woke up like 15 times to pee, brilliant! 

So there you have it... I am going to try, at least to some extent, to document some of my outfits during these last 9ish weeks despite feeling huge. 

Linking up with these lovelies this week:

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Monday, May 11, 2015

Monday in a minute - Mother's Day Edition

Happy (belated) Mother's Day!

Third-trimester pregnancy exhausted is setting in so I am using that as an excuse to bring back Monday in a minute. Basically, a super quick post for the sake of posting.

Mother's day was spent with my sweet baby girl, my handsome husband and my baby belly. It was quiet and busy. The house didn't get cleaned but there were lots of laughs and yummy food. The laundry didn't get folded but there was snuggles and story time. I went to bed tired and happy.

I always imagine myself being a mom but I never really knew what that would mean. I didn't realize the impact such a tiny person could have on my entire world.

Similar to last year's post, I'm going to give myself a gift. The gift of kindness. I'm going to endeavor to be easier on myself as a mom this week. I am going to pat myself on the back for those glowing parenting moments and forgive myself for those moments where I maybe could have done a little (or a lot) better. I challenge you to try and give yourself that same gift this week. We deserve it.

Happy Monday!

Friday, May 8, 2015

my favs this week: last minute mother's day gifts

Happy almost Mother's Day lovelies!

I strongly suspect that there are many out there who, like me, wait until the last minute to sort out gifts. I am also quite confident that Mr. B falls into this category.

So, to help you all out, I'm posting a few last minute mother's day gift ideas. Most of these things, or something quite similar, can easily be found at a moment's notice.

I will confess, I may or may not be wanting everything on this list... so Mr. B, if you're reading, get on it!


A wanted appliance - okay, I'll express some caution buying the mom in your life an appliance, particularly if that mom is your girlfriend/fiance/wife: DON'T be buying your special lady an appliance unless it's something she has clearly expressed a desire for. Having said that, my magic bullet broke this week so I've been chomping at the bit for a new blender for my smoothies, so this would have been a GREAT mother's day present IF I had the patience to wait. I may or may not have already bought this :)

date night - plan a night out and present it to her! Pick a restaurant, buy some tickets to the theater, a movie or  a sporting event (one SHE wants, this is not for you!) and arrange for childcare (this piece is KEY and she'll LOVE that you took care of that very important detail). I promise, she won't be disappointed.

Cute coffee mug - maybe it's just me, but I love stuff like this. It's cute, practical and would get a lot of use. You could even go a step further and fill the cup with her favorite coffee/tea and some chocolates (mmmm chocolate).

flowers - yes, it's cliche, but I love me some fresh flowers ESPECIALLY in the spring! A mother's day must!

Accessories she wouldn't buy herself - your mom/partner likely has a list of things she'd love to have but won't buy herself. A pricey little handbag, a cute pair of shoes or a gorgeous scarf. Your job is to remember all those hints she's dropped (or check out her wishlist on Amazon) and surprise her by getting it for her! Just saying, I wouldn't throw out this gorgeous Kate Spade bag :)

Products she loves - every woman has things she uses all the time. Maybe it's stuff for her face-care routine (*cough* which I happen to be out of Mr. B *cough*), shampoo/conditioner, perfume, mascara... get you the picture, It's practical but also shows that you know her well enough (and pay attention) to pick something she'll actually use.

BONUS - homemade stuff! If you're organized enough to get the kids to help create something special for your mom/partner, you'll earn HUGE bonus points!! Pinterest has lots of easy ideas to help you out!

I hope ALL you moms out there get spoiled! Being a mom isn't always easy but it certainly is the BEST job in the world! HAPPY almost MOTHER'S DAY!

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