1920s Fixer Upper: Update

Whoa what a week!

The weathers been getting hotter here in Michigan! I’m ready to be finished with the interior so I can start out on the exterior of the house! Hello sitting on rocking chairs sipping on cold drinks in the beautiful summer weather!

We can see the light at end of the tunnel for the upstairs! Only a few more areas to patch up and paint and we are ready for the carpet to be installed! It’s stunning how much a little love can really update a room! We got rid of all the bright colors and stark white walls; and painted a ray of warm nudes and soft grays. We chose these colors specifically so that if we wanted a change in style for a room, we don’t have to repaint it. Also, it brings a fresh clean look to the house.

 

Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE color! And with garage sale season, it’s perfect time to find awesome finds to paint and add a pop of color to a room! I’m collecting all “new” pieces for the house to really make it stand out from before.

 

Stay tuned to see everything that’s happening the next couple of weeks!

Look of the Day

Every once in a while, I enjoy going outside of the box and do some character/theme makeup. This was an entry to for a goddess contest I did. The goddess I chose was Asteria: goddess of the stars and last immortal to live with man.

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I didn’t have gold lipstick or white eye liner at the time so I cheated a bit. The white is just acrylic paint. The gold is gold acrylic paint with a bronze eye shadow layered on top. In order for the colors to pop for a galaxy look, I took black eye shadow and blended it with my fingers. I wanted it faint enough so that it wasn’t overpowering the look. I did the purple and blue the same way by blending it with my fingers rather than a brush.

Overall, one of my most enjoyable looks to do. I like being able to take an idea and run with it.

 

Working In Fitness While Working Fulltime: Part Three

This past week I had a running struggle. It was like Mother Nature knew when I was out to get out of work to run and decided to rain. I didn’t want to keep me away from being able to get my cardio in so I decided to try something new—self-defense. I’m not talking about practice kicking some guy in the nuts, but rather learning how to actually throw a punch at an opponent with either arm. I also learned how to block and dodge so you don’t get stunned by a hit to the head.

Mind you, this was the difficult part. I’m definitely not one of those graceful woman warriors you see on TV. My right arm is forceful and accurate; whereas my left is wet noodle. It was hard getting used to it and I’m still getting the hang of it. However, I feel more confident knowing that I can (somewhat) protect myself. I’m sure the more I do it, the better I’ll get. Nothing wrong with practice!

Nowadays everyone should know some sort of defense. The scary stories we found on the internet in middle school are nothing compared to what we hear on the 5 o’clock news. It doesn’t matter if you’re in a city or in the rural areas—almost nowhere is safe from predators. Now before we tie tinfoil on our heads and shut ourselves away from the world, we should always know one thing. We shouldn’t be ashamed of who we are whether we are tall, short, strong, weak, or anything else in between.

It feels good for the soul practicing to be able to defend myself at any time. It’s one step closer to making sure I’m safe and relaxed in any environment.

May Lush Haul

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I recently went into my nearest Lush location and was hooked up with all sort of goodies. I have only tried Lush once in my life and that was years ago. I heard nothing but incredible reviews on their products (and it was pay day) so I wanted to really give them a try.

First off, the sales associate was magnificent. She asked all the right questions to help me look for that perfect product, and was extremely knowledgeable of all their line. She probably could have sold me the entire store if my paycheck allowed it. Plus, she gave me a few free samples.

Second, their products are absolutely amazing and well worth the price tag. I cannot emphasize the quality of their products. Lush is against animal testing, 100% vegetarian, all of their ingredients are carefully picked from local or global sellers who actually care about their products, their packaging is recycled, and it’s all homemade!  They certainly have something for everyone from bath bombs to face masks, to hairdyes and even toothpaste!

My May haul contained some awesome goodies! Below is what I got and a small description about it.

Rose Jam Bubbleroon. This has an amazing smell to it. However, it’s not really rosy rather than sweet and fruity. I love it for Lush cocktails as it produces a bunch of bubble, a very pretty pink colored water, and makes your skin feel so incredibly soft.

 

Milky Bath Bubble Bar. Another favorite to mix with Lush cocktails. It has a comforting scent and very subtle sparkles. Plus, the shape is adorable.

Floating Island and Mmmelting Marshmallow Moment Bath Melts. The Floating Island and the Milky Bath is a perfect combination to help you relax and feel refreshed. The Floating Island is vanilla and sandalwood scented and really moisturizes your skin. The Mmmelting Marshmallow Moment has a candy-like scent and a perfect match to the Rose Jam. I prefer to cut these up and use them for multiple times.

Cocktail time! I decided to mix these four together to create an aromatic and colorful experience. I do like the mixture of the sweet scents with the more delicate ones. My skin felt positively amazing and smooth afterwards.  I added one of my personal rose petal bath bomb to the mix! The water turned a pretty purple color and the aroma helped my body and mind relax.

Don’t Rain On My Parade Shower Gel. I love love love the scent of this shower gel. It’s has a fresh scent mixed with blueberry juice and violet perfume. I was unsure at first when I was in the store but after trying it, I use it practically every day. I love it for my morning shower especially since it helps wake me up.

Lastly, I picked up the Sea Monster Fun. The best way to describe this product is that Fun is bath Play-Doh that does fantastic things to your skin and hair! Sea Monster is lavender and lime scented and it’s very soft to play with. Perfect for kids (and adult kids). I didn’t even mention the best part about their Fun products. About 2.5% of the profits they make from selling Fun goes towards a charity called FunD, which helps create safe places for children to play in the affected area of the 2011 earthquake in Japan.

Overall, I am very satisfied with what I got with this haul. I will definitely be going into Lush again soon to try out some more of their products. Any suggestion post in the comments! I’d love to hear what you have to say about Lush, their products, or anything that I should try!

Look of the Day

 

I’ve been loving vibrant colors lately, especially this NYX yellow. 

 

Eyeshadow:

  • “Tempera”, “Golden Ochre”, “Love Letter”, and “Venetian Red” in the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette.
  • “Psychedelic” from NYX Cosmetics Single Eyeshadows.

Liner:

  • NYX Cosmetics Felt Tip Liner in shade “Jet Black”.

Brows:

  • Brow Zings Tame and Shape Kit in shade “3”.
  • Kat Von D Tattoo Brow in shade “Medium Brown”.

 

Recognizing Toxic Relationships

Everyone at some point has that friend or group of friends that didn’t treat you the best but you stayed with them. You had some good and okay times that showed you that they could be decent human beings. Your thought process leads you to wonder if this is just a rough patch they are going through. You don’t want to give them up and be “that person” who wasn’t with them thick and thin. However, it comes to a point where enough is enough. Although, how can you tell enough is enough? There are red flags that are pretty obvious, and others that aren’t so apparent. Below I listed some way to help identify a toxic friendship/relationship.

 

If you’re sacrificing your happiness. 

If you can find a good reason why you are sacrificing your happiness and forward momentum for a friend then stay. However, if that isn’t the case, you need to leave them behind. No person is worth sacrificing your happiness for if they ask for help one-sidedly; not giving quality help and assistance when you need it most.

If you’re putting all the effort in. 

Like a group project; there should be balance. No one likes when they’re putting in ALL the effort in a friendship and receive nothing back. It’s okay for some days that one side puts in more than the other, that shouldn’t be the status quo. It’s tiresome and frustrating. Who you surround yourself with should want to talk to you, hang out with you, and overall help you become the person you want to be in life.

If you’re being used 

If your friend(s) are calling you to drive them somewhere and do something for them all the time, you’re being used. Especially if that’s the ONLY time they call you. You are a beautiful being with some kickass talents that doesn’t deserve to feel like the only thing you’re good at is for someone else’s personal servant. There are plenty of folks who will wholeheartedly appreciate who you are without using you for selfish gain.

They’re asking too much from you

A friendship shouldn’t make you feel exhausted (unless you two are workout friends). No matter the kind, every relationship should have boundaries. You shouldn’t be at their beck and call. And if you are because you feel bad, then that’s not a healthy friendship. Your planner shouldn’t be filled with things you have to do for them.

They’re not appreciating you

No matter who you are, everyone likes feeling appreciated. It makes you feel warm and loved when someone says “I appreciate everything you do.” However, it doesn’t have to be that touchy-feely either if you’re not that kind of person. A simple “thank-you” goes a long way and help makes your bond stronger. If your friend is taking you for granted, you need to make that boundary or leave.

 

Leaving someone behind is hard. It’s even harder if you’ve been friends for a while or if you were close at some point. Although, people change all the time. Sometimes that change is for the best and others –not so much. The number one person in your life should be you. You can’t build an empire if the foundation is weak.  It took me a long time of hurt and confusion to understand this. I thought some people were my best friends and they turned out to really be harmful and brash.

Working in Fitness While Working Fulltime: Part 1

The first in my fitness series! I’m excited to share the experiences of trying to balance work, life, and fitness! I am in no way a professional at any of this. This is from my own experiences. My advice may or may not work out for others as it did for me.

We all have those days. You know the ones I’m talking about. The week full of what feels like Mondays and you can hardly keep your eyes open sipping on your coffee, or third, of the day. The absolute last thing you want to do is go home and workout. It’s so much easier just sitting down and scrolling through endless amounts of tweets, statuses, and pictures.  It’s hard gathering up the motivation to go to the gym or head out on a run. I know I felt those feelings, especially starting out.

The biggest advice I can give to anyone working those long 40 hours is to SCHEDULE in the time you want to work out. It helps a lot when you make out a routine block of time that you devote to working out.  If you’re a morning person, get up a few minutes early and get your body used to the change.  However, if you’re like me and want to sleep as much as possible in the mornings then scheduling it after work may be a little easier. The moment I come home, I put on my workout clothes and head out the door. I even keep an extra set of clothes and shoes in my car on the days just in case I feel like running somewhere else.

Second piece of advice is to start out small. I feel like you’re more likely to give up if you’re trying to start working out more and doing a complex workout alone. I started out by running a few blocks around my neighborhood and worked my way up from there.

Join a class if it helps. I have done a few classes that interested me like yoga and spinning. It helps when you have an instructor who is wanting you to reach your full potential.  On the other hand, they can be pricey. The “cheaper” option would to have a friend who workouts with you. You can motivate each other and empower one another to keep going.

Only you can make that difference in your life. You cannot expect results after only one week of working out. It takes dedication to keep up and going on your routine. It’s estimated that it takes 66 days for something to become a habit. There will be times you want to give up and it’s okay to have skip days but make sure you get back on the next day.

Look Of The Day

 

I apologize for being MIA for so long. Life has provided me many new and exciting changes which I had to adjust to. I’m happy to be back and cannot wait to share the upcoming summer months with all of you.

This look was inspired by the beautiful sunshine we’ve been having here in Michigan.

Eyeshadow:

  • “Tempera”, “Golden Ochre”, and “Love Letter” in the Modern Renaissance Palatte.
  • “Psychedelic” from NYX Cosmetics Single Eyeshadows.

Liner:

  • NYX Cosmetics Felt Tip Liner in shade “Jet Black”.

Brows:

  • Brow Zings Tame and Shape Kit in shade “3”.
  • Kat Von D Tattoo Brow in shade “Medium Brown”.

DIY: 3 Ingredient Fabric Softener

Tired of buying fabric softeners that are filled with chemicals? Or maybe you’re trying to find a cheaper way to soften your laundry? Well this 3 ingredient softener works wonders and takes 10 minutes to make!

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What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups of Epsom Salt
  • ½ cup of Baking Soda
  • 30 drops of the essential oil/blend of your choosing. (I decided to use lavender and lemon together)
  • 1 sealable container

 

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Directions:

1. Place the Epsom salt inside of the container and mix in the oils. The oils and salt should be blended with the salt thoroughly before moving on. You can add more or less depending on how strong you would like the scent to be.

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2. Add the baking soda. Mix appropriately.

3. Use 2-3 tablespoons of the fabric softener in the rinse cycle.

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It should look like this when everything is mixed in. That’s it! Seriously, you’re all done! Super easy and money saving! Each container worth makes about 10-15 loads! You can easily double the recipe if you would like to. In addition, I’ve used this several times with towels, clothing, and bedding and I haven’t seen any sort of problems with it. I don’t like super strong-smelling softeners so I keep my mixture to this minimum.

 

Like this post or have something you want me to try out? Comment or like below! Follow for weekly DIYs!

Essential Oils: First Step into the Journey

DISCLAIMER: I do strongly suggest you research before using essential oils. There is a lot of information to help you know what you need to know about essential oils and where to start. I am no means an expert. What I will be writing about is my journey with using essential oils. Any advice will be appreciated. 

For the past week, I decided to jump on the essential oil train to see what the hype is about and I was not disappointed. Although, I do want to say this before diving deeper in my experience is that everyone is different. Some people may be sensitive or allergic to certain oils. In addition, people do connect with oils differently. I find that mixing oils a personal creative outlet. Have fun with it! Each essential oil has a few distinct benefits to it which depends on how or why you use them. For example, lemon helps with concentration but you could also use it to make homemade cleaners. Thus saying that, essential oils are known to help fight cold and flu symptoms, alleviate pain, improve digestion, clean your home, can be used to make personal care products, or help improve your mental or emotional state. In this particular post I will mostly be talking about my first weeks experience using them with the diffuser or applying them directly to the skin (also known as “topically’).

So let’s begin. One of my closest friends was describing to me the benefits she experienced with using essential oils. That started my interest in trying the whole thing out. Also, I grew tired of buying candles. For those who don’t know me personally, I absolutely love candles. I felt that the aroma makes a home more comfortable so I would burn one all day long. That resulted in purchasing a candle almost every week which most of you know, can be pretty pricy.

I ventured out to my local supermarket and Marshalls to gather up the supplies without spending my entire bank account on it all. I found my diffuser for about $29.99, and the essential oils between $4.99-$9.99. These are pretty reasonable for the quality and the amount that was inside the vials of oil. Although, not all essential oils are created equally. Some brands are better than others due to how they achieve the purity of the oil with distillation processes. With starting out, I decided that going the cheaper route would be better.

The first few times I used the diffuser, I didn’t mix any of the oils and kept it to a single oil per diffusion session. I didn’t notice too much of a difference in my mood or the environment other than making my apartment smell alright. Topically was different and helped when putting them at your pressure points such as your wrists or temples. For example, I appreciate the use of lavender when I feel anxious or stressed. In addition, I like rubbing peppermint oil on a sore muscle. The massage warms the skin and relaxes the muscle. (I do admit that I don’t enjoy using them as much topically as I do with the diffuser. Therefore, I don’t use this particular method as often.)

I eventually started to mix after a quick Pinterest search and realized the significant difference in aroma. They typically smell different after a few hours because some oils evaporate quicker than others. It’s all trial and error when mixing them. If one mix doesn’t work out for you, that’s okay. Try something else next time.

FAVORITES FOR THE DIFFUSER

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A personal favorite of mine was mixing Frankincense, Cinnamon, and Clove. The aroma is heavy, warm, and spicy.  The reason why I love it so much is the similar reasons why I bought candles. It gives you the fuzzy and comfortable feelings inside. Perfect for the winter months where outside might be gloomy.

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If you’re looking for a more crisp and fresh scent, I typically enjoy mixing lavender, peppermint, and eucalyptus together. The aroma can be described as soothing, energizing, and cleansing. I especially like using this mixture whenever I’m having a rough day because it helps clear my mind and perks me up.

Below are some essential oils and their benefits.

 

I hope you enjoyed this first post about essential oils. I will be experimenting with the various ways of using essential oils and recording my experience with them. So stay tuned! Have something you want me to try or have any advice on using essential oils? Please comment below!