Tuesday, December 31, 2013

My Year in Review

Okay so not only am I posting a day earlier than I normally do but I'm also hopping on the whole "year in review" bandwagon. What a year it was! 

I started this blog. You can read my very first post here. This blog has definitely made me more active and forced me to live a little. 

I got inducted into my school's honor society...Alpha Sigma Lambda for life!

Dave and I took a mini vacation to Jim Thorpe and hiked the Glen Onoko Falls.

Dave and I walked the Color Run in July...and yes we will definitely do it again!

I took part in a water balloon fight, partly so I could seem like a cool blogger to you guys....P.S. I lost the key necklace I was wearing in those pics...I'm kinda bummed because I loved that thing. 

I went ziplining with friends and learned that sometimes you just have to let go.

Dave and I went to Vermont and went dog sledding and had pretty much the perfect vacation together. 

I completed my bachelors degree and I'll be walking in May!

And a few favorite posts of mine:

- This post about Squish. Looking back the picture isn't great, but I remember how much I went through trying to get the shot and I love it in all it's blurry glory.

- When I wrote about the moment I knew I loved Dave.

- When Dave "took over" a post and wrote 15 things about me and my response to that.

- This "creative writing" post. 

- These posts on getting through the rough days and keep moving forward.

                                 Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map

Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas Picture Outtakes

I have yet to meet a cat that enjoys being dressed up. All of my cats have hated it, but I knew I had to do something for you guys for my Christmas day post. So I got this great idea to buy Christmas themed hats for the cats. Dave tried to deter me,  he really tried you guys. 

But once I get an idea in my head, it's on like Donkey Kong. 

Before I begin, let me say this. Without even putting them in outfits, its damn near impossible to get two cats to pose together for a picture. They aren't like dogs where you can say, "Sit, Stay" and take the shot. No, cats are then ones telling YOU to sit and stay. 

But anyway, the first time we put the hats on the boys, they were clearly angry. So mad that as soon as we took the hats off, they decided to take their anger out on each other and were all out brawling all over the house. 

It was not fun.

The second time I decided to take pictures, I wisely decided not to put anything on Squish. He really hates it, even more than Nibs, and I'm pretty sure that is why he and his brother were fighting so bad the first time. Which is why you got a shot of him sleeping in front of the Christmas tree. Nibbler hates being dressed up, but since he loves and adores me, he puts up with my antics. 

Anyway, here are some outtakes from my numerous attempts at getting the "perfect" shot...which didn't happen. 


I believe this is called "The Stinkeye"

Mom, I backed up all the way to the door. Why is this still on my head?

Doesn't the look on his face seem to suggest "The minute you go to sleep, I'm going to kill you"?

Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map

Friday, December 27, 2013

End of the Week Roundup

Hello! How was everyone's week? I only had to work a full day Monday, then a half day Tuesday so I've been enjoying some downtime. Here's my roundup for the week!

1. Got this letter from my school on Saturday. It still hasn't hit yet that I'm done, but maybe when I pick up that diploma it'll hit me then. 

2. Saturday night, Dave and I got our nephews overnight. Kids are exhausting and I'm not going to lie, I yearn for my quiet freedom when they are here, but it's so absolutely rewarding to see them happy and interacting with Dave that it's worth it. Like when we watch a movie and Jacob insisted on holding Dave's hand.

3. I love surprise gifts and I love my friend Gabby even more. We met at school and have made it a point to keep in touch even after she graduated. She is someone I am certain will be a friend for life. She mailed me a surprise gift for x-mas...ironically enough I bought her a BN classic too, Homer's Odyssey. Great minds think alike!

4. The best part of Christmas is not the gifts, but spending time with family and friends. Having a good haul in books doesn't hurt though...

Sorry for the terrible iPhone picture!!

5. Lastly, this is Nibbler face-planting. This cat will get into any position necessary to get some cuddles. 

How was your week? Linking up with Lauren, LaurenLulu and Jennie!

                                     Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Happy Holidays!

Regardless of what you celebrate, I wish you a happy day! 

Happy holidays from Nibbler:

And Squishee:

May your day be filled with joy, love and peace.

Like the peace on Squish's face in the above pic...I hope we all reach that level of peace-ness today. But not Nibbler's...he wasn't pleased with the antlers. 

                                         Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map

Monday, December 23, 2013

14 in '14

Okay, so I know its not even past Christmas yet and I'm already talking about 2014, but since school ended I've been prepping my reading list. While I was in school, I completely neglected most personal reading, so I decided to compile a list of 14 books that I am going to read during 2014. 

This list is not inclusive, I'll still be reading books for the Teen Book Club, Bonnie's book club, and then any books that I decide to pick up along the way. These 14 are just the 14 that my fingers are currently itching to hold, my mind currently wanting to escape to. In no particular order (links take you to the Good Reads page about the book, so you can read the description there and, if you're set up with Good Reads, add any to your list that peak your interest):

Where'd You Go, Bernadette?

I added this to my amazon wish list when I read a rave review of it in People magazine. Dave bought it for me for my birthday and I keep reading how hilarious it is. I love books that make me laugh, so I hope this lives up to the reviews.

Sacre Bleu: A Comedy D'Art

Christopher Moore is one of my favorite authors (him and Walter Moers, who also appears on this list). This book came out almost two years ago and I went to a signing that Moore was having in my area. It was one of the best moments of my life. Sadly, this book has sat on my shelf since then. He's coming out with another book in April, and you can bet your a** I'll be buying that one up real quick too. 

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?
I really like Minday Kaling, I thought she was hilarious on "The Office". I also love books that are complied of several short, hilarious stories. Jen Lancaster and Chelsea Handler also have great books like this as well. I found a copy of this book at a book sale and grabbed it for a buck. I love book sales....

The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic

Another one I want to pick up after reading a good review in People. I love books with original premises like this one, and I'm really excited to see how Barker develops this story. 

The Partly Cloudy Patriot

I first heard about this book on Ashley's blog. Being a history major and a lover of random facts, I think this book will feed my intellectual side, while entertaining me as well. 

Assassination Vacation

Another one from Vowell (and another one I picked up from Ashley). I'm hoping Vowell is as funny and as interesting as her reviews state.

The Alchemyst (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicolas Flamel)

This series has intrigued me ever since I began to volunteer at the library. I can't explain why but it just sounds so interesting.

The Graveyard Book

Sherrie is a huge Neil Gaiman fan. When I picked up the Ocean at the End of the Lane (great book by the way, check it out if you have not!), she told me I really needed to check this book out too. Then my teens in the book club also told me that I absolutely have to read it, so it's on the list!

The Maze Runner

I prefer Young Adult Fiction to any other genre of books. I absolutely loved The Hunger Games and was told this was a great story that was similar in fashion. We shall see!

The Husband's Secret

I first heard about this book on Bonnie's blog when she annouced the 2014 books for her online book club. When I went to go place a hold on a copy at my library, I noticed there are already 117 holds ahead of me...pretty sure I'm not going to check out the book from the library by the end of January, so any gift cards I get from a store that sells this book will most likely go towards purchasing this. 117 patient people can't be wrong, right?

Beauty Queens

The reviews on this one are mixed, but I like the premise of the story. Beauty Queens stranded on a deserted island? Let's see where Bray takes this....

Another one with mixed reviews but with a really neat premise. I like stories with original plots, so I really want to see how this one turns out. 

Well, if the title didn't catch my attention, the reviews did. Reviewers seem to love this book and I'm loving the idea of it. Hopefully, it'll transport me to another world....

I was so excited when this book came out a year ago. I absolutely adore Walter Moer's novels. Leading up to Christmas, I would make Dave drive me to the book store so I could see it on the shelf and smell it's pages. Yes, someone out there is currently holding a book that I sniffed like crazy. Sorry. 

Okay, not really. It smelled freaking awesome. 

Anyway, having this book in my house for a whole year without me picking it up has driven me bonkers. I love the escape that Zamonia creates and I can't wait to go back there again. 

What's on your reading list for 2014?

                                            Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map

Friday, December 20, 2013

End of the Week Roundup

Hello, hello! Christmas is almost upon us! 

1. I posted my very first giveaway on Monday. I'm excited AND nervous at the same time. The giveaway is still open, so please feel free to check it out and enter!

2. I get complimented often about how much I look like Katy Perry. Honestly, aside from the eyes and the hair I don't see it, however it is absolutely one of my favorite compliments to hear. Especially coming from kids, because if there is one group of people who won't lie to you, it's kids:

3. Thursday I had lunch with my "bestie" Joe. Dave of course will always be my first and very best friend, but Joe is my best guy friend outside of Dave. He even went out of his way to get ordained so that he could officiate Dave and I's wedding. I loved catching up with him, he truly is one of my forever friends. 

Three of my favorite men in one picture
4. My neighbor made these adorable cupcakes for her son's preschool and then proceeded to share some with Dave and I! She really is an awesome neighbor and I'm lucky to have her nearby. Anyway, these cupcakes are just too cute:

5. Doesn't it look like I have a two headed cat here? 

In case you were wondering, the tail you see on the left hand side belongs to Nibbler, who is the kitty on the right. Squish's rear end is behind him and he is laying across Nibs' body...I love my babies.

How was your week? Linking up with Lauren, LaurenLuluand Jennie!

Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Who is the Random-est of Them All?

All I have to say is forgive me for the absolute randomness of this post. As I wrote below, my brain is fried.

                                       Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map

Monday, December 16, 2013

e.l.f. - Get it or Forget it? + A Giveaway!

I'm constantly seeing e.l.f. products on my Pinterest feed as great replacements for pricier makeup. I decided to put certain products to the test to see if they are as great as people claim to be. The nice thing about e.l.f. is that everything is priced awesomely with most products ranging between $1-$5. 

So without further ado, here is the list of products I tried and whether or not I feel they are worth it, and if you scroll all the way to the bottom of this post, I'm offering a giveaway on a few select e.l.f. products and a $25 Target gift card!

Essential Holiday 3 piece Plumping Lip Gloss Set - $3

Pros- I liked 2 of the 3 colors (the light pink (middle color in the picture)was a bit too pink for me) but I loved the other two colors and the color itself showed up very nicely on my lips once I was able to get it applied properly.

Cons- I seem to have a problem with e.l.f.'s applicators, they are constantly fighting me when it comes to applying this stuff on me, and these glosses were no exception. I had to dip the applicator in the tube 5 or 6 times to get it evenly coated on my lips. After the gloss dried, it became sticky and didn't stay on very well. 

Get it or Forget it? Forget it. The price is awesome but if you can't get it on your lips and then it won't stay, then what's the point? I will, however, be looking for these colors in other brands because I loved the choices!

Mineral 2 Piece Blemish Set - $5

Pros- It's supposed to help clear up blemishes. I didn't use it long enough to test that claim out. 

Cons- It's meant to hide and disguise blemishes. It didn't. 

Get it or Forget it? Forget it. There are plenty of better concealers and blemish treatments out there, this one didn't do anything it claimed to do for me. 

Mineral 2 Piece Booster Set - $5

Pros- It provides a "finishing touch" on your makeup, almost like a setter. I noticed my face was not as shiny towards the end of the day when the oil on my face would normally work its way out. I definitely feel like it pushed the longevity of my makeup out even further. Also, it did a good job of reducing the size of my pores and softening up my face a little.

Cons- I was not a big fan of the brush. It looks fluffy in the picture, but it's not. It's a bit larger than a concealer brush and since I use this all over my face, I need something that's going to cover more ground in less brush strokes.

Get it or Forget it? Get it, but invest in a different face brush, like this one from e.l.f.

Mineral Eyeshadow Primer - $3

Pros- It works just as well as any other primer I've tried. It helps keep eye shadow on, although I personally feel like certain other primers help colors pop better, like Too Faced's. 

Cons- I don't know what it is about e.l.f. products and their wands but I am forever having trouble with it and this is no exception. The wand deposits very little of the product onto my eye which means I have to dip it into the tube several times to get my whole eyelid covered. Quite frankly, I prefer the tube style of the more popular eyelid primers, however for the price difference I think this con is something I could easily overlook. 

Get it or Forget it? Get it, it works just as well as the more expensive brands for a third of the price. 
Lip Exfoliator - $3

Pros- Does exactly what it promises, it exfoliates and leaves my lips nice and soft (as long as I use chap stick afterwards, of course). 

Cons- The smell. Sometimes it has a very nice vanilla-y smell which is pleasant. Other times it smells like mothballs in my Grandmother's coat closet, which isn't so great.

Get it or Forget it?- Get it, the smell isn't too bad and it definitely has lessened the amount of peeling, chapped lips that I normally get this time of year. 

Tone Correcting Powder- $3

Pros- It definitely does what it says it is going to do, which is correct the color tone on your face. I use it after I prime my face but before I apply my mineral foundation and it helps to lessen the redness in my face. It, however is not a miracle worker. There are still parts of my face (like blemishes) that are a bit too red for this to completely correct, but it does a good job of reducing redness.

Cons- It dries my face out quite a bit. There are a few parts on my face (like my cheeks and chin) that this seems to pull out the dryness even more and causes flakiness to the skin in these areas. I add more moisturizer to those areas and it does help, although there are still some dry patches every once in a while. 

Get it or Forget it?- Toss upIf you have uneven skin tone and are on a budget, get it. It does what you'll need it to do. If you can afford a pricier tone corrector, you may want to find something that will be a bit kinder on dry spots on your face. That being said, I do use this every morning, regardless of the flakiness that it causes. 
Contouring Blush and Bronzing Cream - $3

Pros- I'm going to be honest here. I used this stuff one time and that was it. It wasn't that it was a bad product or anything, I just HATE cream blush, foundations, bronzer, anything. I have no idea why I chose to purchase this to test. It was easy to apply, so that's always a plus.

Cons- If you don't like cream stuff like me, it would be best to avoid this. Also, I've read on a few sites this color is supposed to be flattering for everyone, but I felt like it was a bit too dark on my fair skin, but that is also personal taste, I'm not a huge fan of drastic colors. 

Get it or Forget it?- Toss up. If you like cream blushes and have been lusting after the NARS version of this, get it. Otherwise, forget it.

Studio Bronzer - $3

Pros- Good color, easy to apply. I purchased it in Golden Bronzer and it was a great color for my fact

Cons- It's a bit light, I would think that it wouldn't show up very well on anyone with darker skin. Also, you  have to swirl the colors to get the one tone, so it's hard for me to contour my nose with a smaller brush that isn't mean to swirl.  

Get it or Forget it?- Get it, great price for a great product!

And now for a giveaway!!! I'm throwing this out there now, this is my first giveaway ever so please be patient with me. One lucky winner will get e.l.f. 32 piece geometric eyeshadow set, the lip exfoliator I reviewed above, a 12 piece brush set, and a $25 Target gift card!  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

                                                     Facebook Bloglovin Instagram Pinterest Image Map