Thursday, May 28, 2015

Let's Talk Beauty...

I thought I'd change things up a bit and talk beauty products today. Do y'all exfoliate your face? I keep hearing how good it is for your skin, but I have to admit, I've been a slacker in the exfoliating department. :) 

One thing I read was that it's really good to exfoliate before you apply a moisturizer or anti wrinkle cream because your skin is better able to absorb the product if it's just been exfoliated. 

Oh, and I should pause right here and say I originally looked into getting a Clarisonic. I have a few friends who have it and love it. But after finding out the cheapest one is $100 AND you have to replace the brush heads every three months, I decided to go another route. You can get a four pack of replacement brush heads for around $80, but I didn't want that kind of upkeep. 

So, I decided I wanted two different exfoliating products...a light one and a little heavier one. I wanted a lighter exfoliating product for those days when I don't wear much makeup or maybe for using in the morning before applying makeup. Then I wanted a heavier one for that once a week deep cleaning job. :)

I knew what I wanted for a light exfoliating product, but was having trouble finding it. What I wanted was an all cotton disposable pad that I could use with my OWN soap. Every one I found came pre-loaded with a soap that I didn't want.

Then I finally found these...

They were exactly what I was looking for. I love them! I got them at Target for about $4. They're plain cotton two sided disposable pads that I can use with my favorite Neutrogena soap seen here...

Here's a close up of both sides. This side is great for removing eye makeup or applying lotion, etc...

And this is the exfoliating side...

I simply wet my face and apply my Neutrogena transparent soap, then wet the pad and move it around in a circular motion, using the exfoliating side. It does a great job of lightly exfoliating my skin. 

Here's the heavier exfoliating product I found. I know you're all going to be surprised it's Neutrogena... lol!

It's Neutrogena Deep Clean Gentle Scrub. 

I got this at Target as well for around $5. It has these neat little microbeads that gently exfoliate. I keep it in the shower and wash my face with it about once a week. My face feels so soft when I use this! 

Here's another tip I recently said to always wash your face AFTER you shampoo and condition your hair.  The reason for this is because shampoos and conditioners can sometimes leave a film on your skin. Even though you rinse your hair, some of that residue can remain on your face. 

Okay, now on to a few new makeup items. I recently tried this new mascara...

It's Neutrogena healthy volume waterproof mascara. 

I can't believe I never tried Neutrogena mascara. I love it! It doesn't seem to melt off with our humidity, so that's good. It also does a good job of separating my lashes and it hasn't clumped at all. 

Then I tried this eyeshadow. It's also by Neutrogena. It's a creamy stick, not a powder. 

It's Neutrogena crease proof eye shadow. You just roll it on like a crayon. :)

It really does stay on all day, which is a miracle in our climate. 

I've been using this concealer for over a year now and it's still my favorite...

Neutrogena 3-in-1 concealer for eyes.

It's very creamy and goes on smooth. It blends easily too. It says it's for around the eyes, but I use it on the sides of my nose and pretty much anywhere else I want to even out my skin tone. 

And last, but not least, this is my new eyebrow kit...

It's the e.l.f. Eyebrow Kit, purchased at Target. You can tell it's gotten a lot of use. ;)

It comes with a cream and a powder. I apply the creamy side (on the left) with the thin side of the applicator and then I apply a little of the powder (on the right) with the fluffier side of the applicator to kind of "seal" it in. It fills in my brows and keeps them looking natural. 

Okay, whew! That was a lot of info! Have y'all tried any new beauty products lately that you love?


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

My New Janet Hill Print

Hello there! A while back, while browsing Stacey's Blog, I came across a beautiful print in her kitchen. I asked where she bought it and she told me it's a Janet Hill print from Etsy. 

I LOVED this print! I absolutely had to have one just like it. :) So, I went to the Etsy shop (you can find it HERE) and ordered one for myself. 

And here it is!

Isn't it the sweetest little print?

I've been playing around with it, moving it here and there, trying to find the perfect spot for it.

Here's a close up...

It just looks like it belongs in a kitchen, no? 

There are so many pretty, whimsical prints to choose from in her shop, but I kept going back to this one. 

I have a feeling I've started a new addiction. Stay tuned because you just might be seeing a few more of these popping up in my home. :)

Y'all come back later in the week when I'll be sharing some of my new makeup finds, including my favorite mascara ever!

Hope y'all have a great day!


Friday, May 22, 2015

Around The House

According to a lot of you, these random posts about daily life are some of your favorite, so here you go...

I saw this on Instagram the other day and loved it...

Don't we all need to be reminded of that every now and then? :)

I was rearranging furniture again the other day. I know I mentioned months ago that we wanted to build some bookcases for the living room and we finally decided to get started on them. After they're built, a few things will have to move around, so I was just experimenting. :) 

I kind of like the garden stool over here. The bookcases will be a knock off of some Restoration Hardware ones. Hopefully they'll turn out like we envision. 

It had been waaaay too long since I've made homemade bread, so I decided to rectify that. Actually, my son texted me from school and asked if I would make it. It was hot from the oven when he got home. :) 

Want a closer look?

And even closer?

Yum! It was so good! I couldn't resist taking this pic with it all buttered up...

It's truly the easiest bread recipe. It only takes 30 minutes of prep time and it's ready to eat in just two hours, start to finish. It's never failed me. I've posted a link to the recipe before, but to save you the time, you can just click HERE to see it again. Let me know if you try it. 

So, the other day I couldn't help clipping a few of these backyard blooms to bring inside. I love the combo of purple, yellow, and pink. 

I love how cheerful they are! Flowers brighten up any room, don't they? 

One more thing...did y'all hear one of my favorites, CSI is being cancelled? Oh well, it was a good 15 years. And lets face it, I probably wasn't going to watch without George anyway. Gotta support my fellow Texan, ya know. ;) They're having a two hour "wrap up" episode in September (at least we get to find out what happens to Lisa Shue, right?) and then Ted Danson will join CSI Cyber's sophomore season playing the same character he was on CSI. Did ya get all that? Ha ha! 

Well, that concludes this episode of "Around the House." Hope y'all have a great day and enjoy the long weekend!!!


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Dining Room Pics and Colorful Blooms In The Garden

Hello there! How is your week going? Mine has been pretty quiet, which is always good. :) 

Several blogger friends of mine have been organizing little parties on Instagram using the hashtag #showcaseyourspace. Each week they have a different theme. Recently the theme was "lighting" so I decided to participate and link up this pic of my foyer...

There were so many beautiful pics linked up. Lots of inspiration. Since my house was clean, I decided to snap a few more pics of my dining room. 

I really want to do something with the chandy over the table in here. Painting it might be an option as well as removing the shades and replacing the bulbs with something prettier. Maybe those perfectly round bulbs? However, I still love my carriage house light in the foyer. 

I love this room so much more now with the lighter paint color. It really opened it up. You can tell in the pic above and below how different the paint looks, depending on what time of day and how much sunlight there is. 

On to the backyard...the Vitex trees are in full bloom right now...

Love their purple color!

The yellow Esperanza is working its magic too. It'll bloom the entire summer. 

It's really starting to heat up here in Texas. After snapping these pics, I was a sweaty mess. Lol! Time to stock the fridge with Gatorade. :)

What's blooming where you live?


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Cookies and a Bird Nest

Hello there! We've had several days of doing absolutely nothing and let me tell you, it's been glorious!

During a recent rainy day, I got the urge to make homemade cookies. Sometimes there's nothing quite like spending time in the kitchen mixing and measuring. I couldn't decide between oatmeal cookies or peanut butter, so I asked my son which he preferred. He said "I like the ones with the fork marks on top." So, peanut butter it was. :) 

hallmark cable knit bowls

Do y'all see anything wrong with this picture below? 

I have that nice stand mixer, but for some reason, I almost always just grab the little hand mixer instead. It's like my Kitchenaid has turned into a pretty little decoration. Ha! Don't get me wrong, I DO use it, but for some reason it just seems easier to go with the little one for a lot of jobs. Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this. :) 

Oh, and I have to share the sad state one of my favorite cookbooks is in...

Isn't it pitiful? I literally have to gather it up and stack it up like a pile of papers when I'm done with it. My brother gave it to me for my birthday right after we got married over 25 years ago, so it's been used a ton, but I still love it. 

Oh, and while I was making the cookies, Ms. Holly was enjoying the new box that Amazon so generously delivered to the house just for her enjoyment. Or so she thinks. ;) 

She was napping and I kept saying "Holly...Holly...Hey, Holly!" This was when she finally turned her head toward me and yelled "WHAAAAAAAT???" Lol!

Do y'all use parchment paper when baking? I use it every. single. time. Keeps everything from burning. 

And last but not least, I was in the backyard recently and was so tickled when I found this in the Vitex tree!

So sweet, huh? Looks just like those delicious robin eggs we ate at Easter time. ;) See all the coconut fibers in there? Um yeah, those were pilfered from my window box under the kitchen window. Ha! Guess it makes a fabulous nest. That's okay though. I was happy to provide the building materials for our little feathered friends. 


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

If You've Left Me A Comment and I Haven't Responded, Here's Why...(blogger problems)

Update: I also just noticed a ton of comments in my dashboard under "awaiting moderation." I had no idea these comments were there. All comments are supposed to go directly to my gmail account, but for some reason, a lot of them are going to my "awaiting moderation" page and NOT to my gmail. I can publish them from the dashboard, but there's no way to reply to them from there. Does anyone else have comments in the awaiting moderation that they don't get emailed to them?

I've always had my comments go to awaiting moderation, otherwise I get too much spam, but they've always been delivered to my gmail account as well, until now.

Hi everyone! So, I noticed lately I haven't been getting as many comments as usual. I didn't think a lot of it as I know we're all very busy, especially this time of year. 

Then, thankfully, my friend Stacey politely asked if I got her comment the other day. I didn't and I told her I was beginning to wonder if I had upset her in some way because I checked back and I hadn't received a comment from her since January. She explained that she had left a comment on every post, but when she went back to check, they never posted. (And she assured my I hadn't upset her, thank goodness! I was really worried about that!)

I'm SO glad she brought this to my attention. At first I couldn't figure out what happened. I do have to approve every comment before it posts, so sometimes it takes awhile for it to post, but not usually more than an hour or so. My phone alerts me to each new comment, (as does my computer) so when a new one comes in, I can usually read it and post it pretty quickly, then go back and reply to it when I'm at home or as soon as I have time. 

Then I thought to check my spam folder. Oh. My. Goodness!!!!!!!! There were HUNDREDS of comments from lots of you in my spam folder! The only thing I can figure is that a few months ago, I kept getting a comment from this same company and it was obviously spam and there was no email address to reply to. Their comment came in as "no reply." 

I got tired of these constant comments from this same company, so instead of deleting them, I finally marked them as "spam." Well, I guess that made ALL my "no reply" comments go to my spam folder. 

I'm guessing if I mark one "no reply" comment as spam, it automatically marks ALL my "no reply" comments as spam? 

Most of you know if there's no email address attached to your comment, it makes you a "no reply" person. As in, there's "no way to reply" to your comment. (a lot of Google Plus people are "no reply" too. I think the default setting in Google Plus is to automatically make you a no-reply person, and you actually have to go into your settings to change it to include your email address) Anyway, normally this isn't a problem because I totally allow anonymous and "no reply" comments. 

If you're a no reply person, here's how it works...I'll receive your comment via email through my Gmail account, but there's no email listed to reply to you with, so I'll publish your comment, then I'll just reply to it within my own comments section. (you just have to check back in the comments section to see my reply) That's no big deal and I always welcome no reply and anonymous comments. I myself was a "no reply person" before I had a blog, so I totally understand. :) 

And of course if you're not a "no reply" and there IS an email associated with your comment, I'll receive it through my Gmail account, publish it, and just hit "reply" and respond to your comment via email.

Oh, and also, a while back, Blogger automatically added "word verification" to everyone's comment section where it asks you to "prove you're not a robot" and enter a series of numbers and letters before you can comment. I never added that, it was done automatically by Blogger, but you don't really have to do it. You can just leave your comment like you used to, and hit "publish" and it'll publish without you having to enter those mixed up letters and numbers. 

So anyway, I'm thinking that when I marked that one "no reply" comment as "spam" it ran with it and started marking ALL my no reply comments as spam? What's weird is that it also started marking a few others (including Stacey's) as spam and they're NOT "no reply" people or anonymous. So strange. 

I pulled up one of the no reply comments that was in my spam folder and marked it as "not spam." Then I went into my settings and it was still set to receive ALL comments, including anonymous and no reply. 

Hopefully it's fixed now and I'll start receiving all my comments again. I'm SO sorry if you've left me a comment and I haven't replied. Please know that I wasn't even aware you'd left me a comment because so many of them were going straight to spam. Ugh. I feel terrible that so many of you probably thought I was just being rude by not replying to you. 

My spam folder only showed me the comments that were in it for the last 30 days, so if you left a comment before that, I never saw it. 

If you asked a question and I didn't reply it's because I didn't get your comment. If you don't mind, just comment again or email me and I'll be more than happy to answer. :)

I know there are a lot of you who regularly comment but recently showed up in my spam folder, so if you don't mind, would you please leave a comment on this post so I can see if I receive it and it's working? As usual, I'll reply to all comments, so if you don't see a reply from me, I didn't get it and I'll keep working to fix it.

Comments are one of the best parts of blogging and I appreciate each and every one of them. I love the interaction we have and the relationships we've created. Hopefully those of you who have left comments recently, but haven't gotten a reply will see this and know that it wasn't intentional. 

I know several people thought I wasn't replying to their comments, but when they went back to the post, they saw my reply right under their comment in the comments section. So if I reply to your comment in the comment section, that means you don't have an email address attached and that's the only way I have of replying. :) 

Do you think I could have said the word "comment"  and "no reply" any more than I did in this post?! Lol!

If anyone has any tips for me on this issue, (or if you've had the same thing happen and were able to fix it) please let me know. I'll take all the blogger advice I can get. :) 


Monday, May 11, 2015

A Few Mother's Day Lovelies

Hello all! Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and a perfect Mother's Day! 

I thought I'd share a few things from my sweet boys...

My youngest son got me the cat necklace and I love it! I've never had one before and can't wait to wear it. :) The mug is from my oldest son. Ahem...looks like we have a comedian in the house...

The top left is a leaf I found in the garage a few weeks ago. I loved that it was a perfect heart shape, so I just stuck it on top of a cabinet in the garage and kind of forgot about it. But my sweet hubby found this little frame, used rub n buff on it, then attached that pink mesh with the heart leaf in the center. Cute, huh? 

For now I have it on the buffet in the kitchen, but we're finally getting ready to build the bookshelves for the living room and I think that's where it'll end up. 

Spider Mums are my favorite flower. So pretty!

Have y'all tried this tea? It's by Harney and Sons and the flavor is "Paris." We buy it at Fresh Market, but you can buy it online too. It's a black tea with natural vanilla, fruit, and citrus flavors. On the tin, it describes its "character" as "A fruity black tea with a hint of lemony bergamot." Yum! 

I love the tin it comes in too. Oh, and just a tip...each sachet makes TWO cups of tea, so I usually just use a jumbo mug that holds about two cups worth and sip on it while I'm checking blogs and IG. :) This tea has an amazing aroma too!

Do you have a favorite tea?

Hope you all have a great week!


Friday, May 8, 2015

Backyard Pics and Zinnia Seed Update

So, do you want to see how well my zinnia seeds are doing???

Umm...yeah...I've given up on seeds. Lol! This is after about a month and obviously something has been eating them. So, I made a trip to the garden center and picked up my favorite go-to flower, the Purple Gomphrena.

Please take note of my fancy Garfield gardening shovel. ;) I think it originally came with a set we bought for the kids to use at the beach, but it works perfectly for planting my flowers. 

It's funny because I got this six pack of Gomphrena for less than I paid for a few packets of seeds. I need to learn to just go with what works, especially in the garden. :) 

The Gomphrena does so well here. It's heat tolerant, constantly has beautiful blooms ALL summer long, and it even hates to be watered a lot. Perfect, huh?

Here are a few more pics of my backyard right now...

backyard knockout roses

My mom gave me this sweet basil, so I planted it on the patio. I love basil.

And look who keeps coming back... It's my shamrock plant from last year! I kept pulling it up and discarding it, but it just keeps coming back strong, so I decided to leave it. I actually love shamrocks and the pretty white flowers are a bonus. 

My lantana is blooming a lot earlier this year. 

If you look closely in the foreground of the pic above, you'll see where my hubby planted some of the shamrocks I kept pulling up. They seem to grow anywhere around here! 

Well, that's about it. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all have a wonderful day!

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