Friday, September 19, 2014

Getting To Know You

I've never posted fun facts about me, so I thought I would share some random info:

1.   I used to wear contacts, but I prefer hiding behind my glasses (weird, I know).
2.   My middle name is Jeanne but pronounced "Jean".
3.   I am super organized, but a BIG procrastinator.
4.   I am a Disney fan. Disneyland, Disney films, Disney t-shirts. I love them all.

5.   I don't like my legs or hands (but I am grateful to have them). I have no problem with my freckles.
6.   I don't drink coffee.
7.   I am 18 months away from [finally] getting my bachelor's degree in Public Relations.
8.   I used to hate my laugh - I can blame a bully in the third grade for that. Now I embrace it.
9.   I can sleep 5 OR 8 hours and function just fine... but the 6-7 hour range and I turn into a monster.
10. It is impossible for me to spell "permanent" on the first try (permenant? perminent?).
11. My favorite number is #11 (with #2 in a close second).
12. My favorite foods include: Kraft Mac n'Cheese, French Toast and Pizza (obviously not a health nut).
13. I love musicals, ballets, and comedians. Basically, if I can see it in a theater, I am all over it!

14. I am horrible at math but work in accounting. I'm actually pretty good at it and have an awesome calculator.
15. I love watching the Biggest Loser. On my couch. Eating cookies. (Woof)
Now, I would love to know more about YOU!!! Leave a comment with some fun facts about yourself! The more the merrier!

Brave Love Blog

Monday, September 15, 2014

Apartment Update

Well, I am pretty much moved into my new place. It has taken four months, but in my defense, it was a really busy summer.

Not a lot has changed from my "blank slate" posts other than Houston hanging up my wall decor for me. But I figured I would show you the current and most likely permanent state of my apartment.

Let's start with the bathroom:

The bathroom went through five or six transformations before I figured out what I wanted. See how it looked before here.

I knew I wanted white fluffy towels and almost bought these from Target for $6.99 each (ugh), but Costco came through and I was able to get six towels for $24.00. They are big, fluffy, spa-like towels, and I love them. I also got these two gray hand towels from Target as accents.

The shower curtain was a find from TJ Maxx and you can read all about that discovery here. I love how light and airy it is and I am kind of obsessed with the pattern - I have to restrain myself from buying picture frames, towels, pillows, etc. (It looks gray in the photo, but it is a pale blue).

I tried two other floor mats before I ended up going with "plain" white. The first mat was from Marshalls. The color wasn't perfect, but I thought it would be close enough - that is until I got it home and one of the side seams was completely crooked. Back to the store it went. The second mat was from Target (someone stage an intervention!) and I liked it, but I just couldn't justify spending $30 on it, so it went back as well. Houston had two extra bath mats at his house and insisted that I take them "just to see" how they looked. I was reluctant to do all white mats - feet, hairspray, makeup... it could get destroyed. Once the mat was in the bathroom, I was in love.

Back in March I bought this apothecary jar knowing I wanted to use it for cotton balls in the bathroom. I actually had a birthday coupon from World Market for $10, so this beauty was mine for five dollars! The Q-tips are corralled in what was once a Bath and Body Works candle. I followed Summer's tutorial HERE for cleaning it out and re-purposing it once the candle was gone. 

The corner above the toilet is boring and I am still contemplating doing something like this above it, minus the towel bar. But, in the spirit of penny-pinching, I will probably paint some old shelves white, get a frame from Ikea and call it a day.

I'll be back with more updates soon. Have a happy Monday, friends. The weekend is only five days away!

This post is not sponsored, but it does contain affiliate links which result in an affiliate commission. All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own, as I only recommend items I personally love.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Wednesday Wish List No. 18

So I have never been a big "make-up" girl. At one time in my life I was obsessed with Kevyn Aucoin's book Making Faces, but try as I might, I just don't have a knack for face art with foundation and lipstick.

As I am getting older (groan) I have noticed the color under my eyes is a little darker and the glow in my skin is a little duller. - Staring at a computer screen for 10+ hours a day will do that to you. So I've stalked a few YouTube videos for a couple weeks and dreamed of being able to contour, shade and blend like a pro.

It probably isn't going to happen, so for now I will just settle on a couple items that may actually help my minimalist makeup look a little better.

The Beauty Blender - I am having a hard time splurging on a $20 sponge, but everything I read says to skip the imitation sponges and just buy the original out of the gate. - Kind of hard to justify when the "imitation" sponges are a fourth of the price at Ulta.

L'Oreal Paris BB Cream - I always thought BB Creams were just another item that genius marketing professionals had convinced us we need. My jaw hit the floor when I saw Kandee Johnson put on this BB Cream and it instantly evened her skin tone! It was magic in a tube. I'll probably hit up Target this weekend for some of my own.

Laura Mercier Concealer - This was another item I saw Kandee use and the finish was flawless - something I have yet to achieve on the soft skin under my eyes. Is it worth the price tag? I haven't yet decided.

Do you have any makeup staples that you swear by? I would love to hear about them (especially if they don't give me heart failure when I hear the price).

YouTube accounts I am currently stalking:

Savannah Wallace - Maiedae
Kandee Johnson
Meg - ciaoobelllaxo

This post contains affiliate links which result in an affiliate commission. All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own, as I only recommend items I personally love.

Monday, September 8, 2014

The Fab Five Reunited

Life gets in the way of things. Coffee dates, movie nights, spa days are replaced by work, homes to care for and families to raise. Life and its time killing abilities fly by in fast forward and before you know it, it has been years since you had a get-together with your closest girlfriends.

Four years, three weddings, two babies. To be exact.

Leah's wedding in 2010 was the last time all five of us were together.

Once attached at the hip, the five of us enjoyed life and singleness to the fullest. When I think of my 20's, I think of the Fab Five. My group of four girlfriends (plus me) that filled my weekends with fun and filled my love tankwith words of affirmation.

The last time Brittany and I had dinner (in July to celebrate her April birthday) I said I would try to coordinate a day to get everyone together. Imagine my surprise when it actually worked! I planned 5 weeks in advance and I got to see all four of their lovely faces in one room at one time! - A miracle. (I am actually still in shock that it worked out!)

My, how things have changed.

In the last four years we have tried our best to stay connected, even if it meant we didn't get to lay eyes on one another.

Alisha always reads my blog and posts the sweetest words of encouragement.
Brittany always showers me with thoughtful gifts (her love language) and quarterly dinner dates.
Leah always keeps my secrets and let's me know she is thinking of me even if we don't get to talk often.
Shauna always listens to my venting and follows up with my prayer requests long after I asked her to lift me up.

Needless to say, the sweet babies stole the show and were the main topic of conversation. - I mean, they babble, drool and giggle when you play peek-a-boo. Adorable. We played "pass the baby" a lot.

It was so wonderful to catch up with my friends and to have time with "the girls" like we used to - and we all love the additional two little ladies in our group.

Hopefully we can make this visit happen again at least once before another four years passes.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Goodbye Summer

Yesterday was the "last day of summer" - a depressing thought, except that I live in Southern California where it is generally 75 degrees on Christmas day! I guess I still have a couple more weeks to try to make it to the beach and have a nap on the hot sand.

But because Labor Day has come and gone, today I start another non-stop 16 weeks of course work (I have two, eight-week classes, back to back) and I am wishing I didn't have last week off as a break. Having a break for 5 days makes me realize just how much "free" time I would have without the studying/paper-writing/test taking. *sigh* But the next 18 months is the end of a very belated, challenging and exhausting journey to get my education. - I plan on going straight from the graduation ceremony to my bed and not waking up for at least two days.

But it was nice to have a week off to re-charge and I am actually excited for this particular course - I think it will have a lot of valuable resources for this blog... and that makes me ready to start studying!

But before the class began, we finished off the summer and my one-week hiatus with a jammed packed Labor Day weekend! It was so nice to be outside - even though I can't do a THING with my frizzy hair when there is humidity in the air. A messy bun and greasy bangs were the end result.

Saturday was spent celebrating Henry's 2nd birthday. (Henry is Derek's son, Derek is Houston's best friend). It was a beautiful and sunny day and we had such a wonderful time watching Henry chase balloons and devour his birthday cupcakes! - What a difference a year can make... last year he wouldn't eat his smash cake!

Sunday we got to spend time with Leah and Justin and their baby Carrie. Needless to say, I am in love with that baby. Her smile, laugh and fantastic baby-rolls make me turn into the crazy baby lady. I love babies. Apparently I love this girl so much that I took 80 photos of her and not a single photo of me and her mama. (Sorry Leah).

Monday was spent in Long Beach with amazing weather! We welcomed the change in temperature since it was in the 90's at home and only 80 degrees in Long Beach. Thank you coastal breeze! We saw a movie (November Man), ate at Maggiano's and checked out some Labor Day sales.

And now it is Monday Tuesday. My desk at work is piled high and so is my CBU course work. One thing at a time... One thing at a time.