Tuesday, October 31, 2017

The Holiday Season with Grocery Outlet!


It's the holiday season and what pairs better with the holidays than wine?? I know, nothing. Well, I've teamed up with Grocery Outlet to show you their variety of wines that are now 20% off! Grocery Outlet offers wines at a discount regularly, but right now you can enjoy an additional discount. Who doesn't love that?

I bought some red wine and Prosecco. For my pairing I used Brie, fresh blackberries, fresh pear, fresh sweet apple (like Gala or Pink Lady), colby jack cheese, and fresh strawberries. I slicked the pear and apple and topped them with some mashed blackberries or strawberries. I then added some berries on top of the cheese. If you take a bite of the cheese/berry mix with a slice of apple or pear and pair it with some wine, you'll be in heaven!

Something that makes the wines from Grocery Outlet so great is that the wine buyers really know their wines. Grocery Outlet's wine buyers are industry experts who live in Napa and buy the best wines at the biggest discounts. What does that mean? You, the buyer, get to save money!

Not only does Grocery Outlet have the best wines, they also have all the pairings to go along with it. They have cheese, berries, crackers, and all at very affordable prices! My favorite part is that they don't sacrifice quality just for a good deal. Everything in Grocery Outlet is affordable and high quality.

The guests you invite to your holiday parties will be impressed by your wine and cheese pairings!

Sunday, October 29, 2017

My newest obsession

We are leaving for our big trip this Thursday! All of the shopping is done and we have things somewhat organized and ready to be packed, but there's still so much to do! Like getting our house ready to have actual housesitters in it! Since I won't be posting on the blog while we're gone, make sure you're following along on Instagram to see where we are and what we're seeing! 

Even though we're about to leave, I wanted to share something new that I've started doing...

I've become a distributor for Monat!

Juliette, what the heck is Monat?

OMG I'm so glad you asked. Monat is a collection of different hair products that are naturally-based, pure, safe, and sustainable. The ingredients in Monat mimic the body's own natural oils to reduce hair thinning, prevent oxidative stress, and add volume and shine. There are shampoos, conditioners, oils, hair spray, dry shampoo, men's products, shave cream, eyelash/eyebrow serum... the list goes on and on! One the (many many) great things about Monat is that there are different systems, so depending on what your hair needs, there's a system for you. There's one to add volume, one that repairs hair (which I definitely needed after too many years of coloring and giving myself at home trims... there's a picture later in this post), a regrowth system.... I mean you guys, it's amazing.

After 5 weeks of using Monat
There's a lot of scientific backing for why Monat works, and if you're scientifically minded (I am not... I would definitely be Penny on Big Bang Theory except with MUCH less muscle tone), you'll love reading about it. If you want more information on this, let me know and I'll get at you with some links!

So, let me show you some of my results. This is my hair before I got a trim or did anything.

Ignore the sign. Remember, we're still working on un-bachelorpadding our home. My hair was TERRIBLE. But then, I got a trim and some more color put in, and this was my hair the night before I first washed with Monat.

Better! But not great! Then, 5 weeks later...

Now, obviously my hair was curled in the most recent picture and the lighting was better, but you can still tell what a difference there is! It's fuller and shinier and it feels SO GOOD. The most noticeable part, however, has been my hairline. I've always said I suffer from female-pattern-baldness, which you can see on the left. Then, after 6 weeks, that's my hair from the same angle!  
 If you have been struggling with your hair or just want to add some extra volume or shine, let me know. I love this product and I really believe in it. There are so many things I want to tell you about (like how you have to use the shampoo twice a wash but the second time a magical thing happens), how LONG the product lasts because of how concentrated it is, what an amazing VIP program we have... the list really does go on and on.

I promise I won't be that annoying person who is constantly in your face trying to get you to buy my product... that's not my jam. What IS my jam is amazing hair. So if you are interested, let me know!

Monday, October 23, 2017

These products were duds

For a long time (I'm talking years), I've had certain makeup products I've sworn by. You can check out some of my favorites here. Over the past year or so I've deviated from my usual products because of sales and general curiosity. While I've found some new favorites, I've also found some products that were really not worth the money I feel like I wasted. To save your wallets and your time, I've listed some of the recent duds I've found.

Super Curler 24 hour volume and curl mascara.
I bought this out of desperation when my standard favorite Colossal Lash was out of stock. I was disappointed in this mascara because the formula felt watery (more watery than a normal brand new mascara) and the brush was large and made up of flimsy bristles and it didn't coat my lashes well at all. 

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Dark Circle Eraser
I'm so disappointed in this product! I saw bloggers boast about this for yeeeeears but I never bit the bullet because the $12 product seemed too steep for something I didn't know would work or not. Well, a couple of weeks ago I decided to give it a shot, and it was a bust. Maybe the circles under my eyes were too dark, but I didn't feel like it offered very good coverage unless I used multiple layers, and when I did that my face felt cakey. I definitely won't be purchasing this product again!

Cover Girl Easy Breezy Brow
This was another desperation buy when I was out of eyebrow powder and felt like a change. It turns out that using a brush to apply your eyebrows isn't a very good idea. This would probably work for somebody like Brooke Shields or Cara Delevingne who just want to swipe a bit more color into their already full brows, but for somebody like me who wants to add precise strokes, this product was a waste. 

Maybelline Master Prime
I think this is supposed to be a dupe of the Smashbox primer, but it just left my face feeling greasy!

Almay Brow Pencil
This pencil is SO thick it was almost as pointless as trying to use the brush I listed above. On the upside it was pretty pigmented so the color really shows up, but on the downside if you mess up, you have color where you really don't want it.

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick (color: Perla)
This was a sample in one of my Birchbox boxes. I felt like I had jumped straight out of the 90s with this color! I also didn't like how, upon application, the product felt super watery, but after a few minutes it dried into a chalky mess. No thanks!

Up & Up Daily Moisturizing Lotion (dupe for Aveeno)
I will definitely be spending the extra $3 to purchase actual Aveeno products after trying this dupe. Like so many other products this one felt watery, and my skin didn't feel moisturized at all. It just felt slimy. Normally the Target Up & Up products nail it, but not this one!

Don't worry though, I'm not a total pessimist, and there are some products that I've really been loving lately, so stay tuned for that!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Our two tiny visitors

My two little nieces came and stayed at our house over the weekend. Just the girls - no parents! I've been begging my sister to give me her kids for a weekend but I didn't really think she actually would. I could not have been more excited for the weekend! I bought toys, snacks, more toys, more snacks, and told everyone I encountered that my nieces were coming to visit and LOOK at them... aren't they cute?? Then I showed everyone (like the cashier at World Market) this picture:

We picked the girls up at Nordstrom Rack (#heaven) and, after some shoe shopping which resulted in these cute red shoes for Kynlee, we began the drive back to our house!

We had babyproofed our house as much as we could, and it worked out well. The only hard thing was that we have SO MANY stairs and Kynlee (19 months) isn't SUPER great with stairs, so I was kind of concerned about that the whole weekend. But you guys, check out her perfect blogger foot stance!

I had gone a little overboard buying toys, but it turns out the only toy I really needed to buy was a Sofia the First doll with magnetized outfits. I got it at Kohl's for like $8 and Katelynne was OBSESSED with Sofia aaaaallllll weekend. She even put Sofia and all her accessories in a plastic bag and carried her with us everywhere!

We took lots of selfies...

...and had lots of bubble baths!! Kynlee does this thing where if you say, "Kyn, show me The Look!" she looks at you like this:

...it kills me every time. She found my shower cap and really enjoyed that.

Bedtime was a little hard... I put them down a little before 10 and there were loooooots of tears. Once Katelynne fell asleep she was out for the night, but Kynlee was another story! She usually nurses during the night so she was very upset that I wasn't able to satisfy her need... it resulted in a LOT of screaming. And I mean SCREAMING, not just crying. I had to get up with her a couple of times and it took 20-30 minutes of just holding her while she screamed until she tired herself out before she fell asleep for a couple of hours... needless to say, we were both exhausted in the morning. Katelynne woke up at 6:30 on Saturday morning and I was able to let her watch Secret Life of Pets before Kyn woke up around 7:15 and we had to actually get out of bed... nobody was super happy.

Keith was able to hang out with us for a little bit (he wasn't too thrilled with the nighttime screaming) before he left for the USC vs Utah football game. The girls and I went to a pinecone festival with my mother-in-law later that morning! Kynlee got a little happier as the day went on...

Katelynne got to sit in a fire truck! Pink bag story: Katelynne found this pink diaper bag that my sister had bought and claimed it as her own, calling it her "purse packback." She carries it EVERYWHERE. And really didn't ever want to put it down! It's gigantic!

I was able to get a pretty good picture of me and Kynlee.

Katelynne insisted on picking out her own outfit. I tried to get her to wear something different but she was set on wearing her pony dress and wouldn't be bribed out of it! She wore this outfit for like, 3 days straight.

She got to decorate her own pinecone at the festival! My sweet mother-in-law helped her.

I tried to get a picture of all three of us but this was the best I got.

We got back around 1pm and I was desperate for a nap, but my sister had said that if they didn't nap any more during the day (they had both slept in the car) they would sleep better that night. So, I tried to keep us busy allllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll afternoon! 

We played with playdough, played with Sofia, played with the animals, jumped on the bed, ran around, ate snacks, and then fiiiiinally it was time to eat dinner and take a bath! Both girls were exhausted by bath time (at 6pm).

I put Kate's hair up in a towel and she decided she looked like "an ice cream cone." She wasn't wrong!

Kyn fell asleep by 6:50. And oh my goodness... she is too cute! I just can't.

That night was MUCH better. Some screaming, but not nearly as much as the first night! Hallelujah! The next morning we went to Lake Arrowhead and I took the girls to ride some of the fun rides. They (mostly Kate) LOVED it!

There was a carousel...

...and a train. Katelynne held up 4 fingers (she just turned 4 AND got to ride 4 rides) and looked very somber as she rode around the track.

When we got home, I had to hurry to pack all their things so I could take them back to their parents. I only got ONE picture of all 4 of us together, and Kynlee was not cooperating! But, I guess that's how it is with kids?

Having the girls over was SO much fun and I already miss them. I mean, I REALLY miss them! They're so much fun and so excited over little things and they just made me laugh all weekend. I am so lucky to have such wonderful little nieces! Come back soon, kids! I'll have more blue Jell-O for you!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

We have news...

Well, we have news. We've been planning this for quite some time and it's getting harder and harder to keep it a secret...

We're taking a huge trip in November!
 After a lot of planning and figuring out dates and what countries/continents we'd most like to see, we finally narrowed it down and have a list of two continents and 5 countries... maybe a 6th if things get too wild.

Commonly asked questions:
Where are you going? Well, we're not telling you that yet. I've dropped hints on Instagram and Twitter, but we're not sharing our whole itinerary until we're actually on the trip. This means you get get to follow along and be surprised! I will tell you that two countries will probably be very wet and rainy, so I need good shoes. Please tell me what shoes to buy. I'm a sheep. I'll buy whatever you sell me.

How long will you be gone? Three and a half weeks. We'll be gone over Thanksgiving which means that immediately after we return I'll be able to decorate for Christmas!

What suitcases are you taking? We are each taking a carry-on bag and a personal bag. The carry-on can't weigh over 22 lbs, and that includes the suitcase. SO I'm mildly freaking out about that, bu. t I think I have a plan which includes me entering LAX looking like I weigh 500 lbs more than I actually do, if you know what I mean.

Are you nervous to travel when so many terrifying things are happening all around? I'm scared, yes. But you know what? I'm nervous going to the grocery store. Or down the hill to go to Target. I don't feel safe anywhere right now, and that is what Terrorists want. We are going to travel and have a wonderful time with wonderful memories, just like we did on our dangerous honeymoon two years ago.

What about your animals? Keith's parents will watch the dogs, and my friend Kristin will catsit Satan, I mean Patton. She's a gem.

But really I have questions:

Can you take aerosol on an airplane?
What are the best walking shoes that are also water resistant? I'm thinking white Adidas but having then be white just makes me nervous.

What packing cubes are actually the best?

If it's cold and rainy and in the 30s, should I have gloves?

Will people automatically know we're from America and hate us? Is there a way to avoid that?