Sunday, November 24, 2013

Relief Society

I started a really beautiful post about my spiritual journey here in Florida, and about how things I said I'd never do, I've done.

However, that beautiful post disappeared.

So this is what you get.

I bore my testimony for the first time in Sacrament meeting three weeks ago.

I substitute taught in Relief Society last Sunday.

I did too well in the above lesson, and therefore, I am teaching again on December 15th.

Here's what I didn't know about teaching Relief Society:
  • I am not teaching, the spirit is teaching.
  • During the lesson, I will remember experiences that pertain to the lesson that I had not thought of while preparing the lesson.
  • The sisters who share their insights and provide comments will rock my world.
  • It's not scary.
I'm actually really excited about my next lesson.  It's about the Mission of Jesus Christ. What better topic to have shortly before Christmas?  What better topic to have, period? My goal is to ultimately become like the Savior, so teaching a lesson that is all about Him and His mission is going to be AWESOME!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

November Glam Bag Makeup Fun!

 I felt pretty so I wanted to take pictures of myself and share them. Humor me?  

Here is a look I put together using a few of the items from my November Glam Bag:

With flash

Without flash
I used Pixi Beauty Bronzer in Subtly Suntouched to contour my cheekbones, just a tad.
I used BH Cosmetics Galaxy Chic eyeshadow in Eclipse to smudge/blend my eyeliner, as well as putting a tiny bit on the outer corner of my eye.
I'm wearing two layers of EM Michelle Phan lipstick in Violaceous. I wanted the color to be a bit more intense than it was with just one layer.

Other items I used:
Monistat Chafing Relief Powder-Gel (as a primer)
L'Oreal True Match Lumi foundation in C3
Hard Candy Glamoflauge concealer in Ultra Light
MAC Mineralize Blush in Dainty
Maybelline New York eye shadow in Creme de Cocoa (on my eyebrows)
Cailyn Line-FX Gel Eyeliner in Iron
Wet n Wild Petal Pusher palette - the white "Browbone" shade on my brow bone, the light purple "Eyelid" shade above my crease
Wet n Wild Walking on Eggshells eyeshadow - the "Eyelid" shade on my eyelid
One coat of Benefit They're Real mascara, and one coat of Pixi Lash Booster Mascara

When I list it all out like that, I feel like I'm wearing a ton of makeup!

Ipsy November Glam Bag Review

Annnnnd once again I've got an Ipsy dilemma.

"I can't use these products until I take pictures of them in their perfect, unused, form."

"I really want to play with my items!"

"It's raining, I need bright, natural sunlight to take pictures that will look good!"

"I guess I'll start writing about the products before I take pictures..."

"Ugh, but now the products will be USED in the pictures!"

 I'm so OCD.

So anyway... My November Ipsy is awesome!!

What is Ipsy?
Each month, subscribers will receive a beautiful Glam Bag with deluxe samples and full-sized beauty products. Members can watch and play along with the stylists with the same products that they are using. All for only $10 a month.

So go ahead, take the beauty quiz, get your first Glam Bag, watch the videos, and create your own!

From Ipsy's site

  • EM Michelle Phan Lip Gallery Creamy Color Sheer Lipstick in Violaceous. Full size. $16.50 if you buy it from EM's site.

Inspired by the girl who believes less is more. A fresh tint of just right color for a dreamy pout. Lightweight, creamy texture with sheer, buildable color quality. Silky shine finish and conditioning comfort.

I believe I've found my new favorite lipstick!  (Before, it was Mauve Outta here by Wet n Wild.) This color is gorgeous, and I don't feel like it's too "out there." It's perfect for everyday looks and for dressing up.  It's sheer, so it combines with your natural lip color a bit to be the perfect berry shade for anyone. You can also wear multiple layers to make it more opaque. The texture is smooth and creamy, and thinner than most chapsticks I wear, so I hardly noticed I was wearing lipstick. It smells like vanilla, which is awesome. It's not super long-wearing, but I did get at least 2 hours of good wear out of it.

To see pictures of me wearing this lipstick, check out this post.

(Gem eye pencil in Amethyst on top, lip crayon in Hot Damn on bottom)
 A glossy lip crayon with a smooth texture that is perfect for travel and touch-ups on the go. I love red lips, but how many red lip products does one girl need?  I got the red Urban Decay lipstick sample, the red Cailyn lip tint, and now this red Be a Bombshell lip crayon. Of those three red lip products I just mentioned, this is my least favorite. It's too sheer. It actually looked more pink than red on me. I'm sure if I built up layers of it on my lips it would be fine, but why would I do that when I have two other red lip products I could use? (Not including the full size red Urban Decay lipstick I purchased.) I wish I hadn't tried this out. I'm hoping I can sanitize it and someone will be willing to swap with me, so I can get something else.

  • Pixi Beauty Bronzer in Subtly Suntouched. Full size. $18 if you buy it from Pixi Beauty's site.

(Galaxy Chic eyeshadow in Eclipse on top, Pixi Beauty bronzer in Subtly Suntouched on bottom)
This bronzing powder gives your complexion the warmth and luminosity of naturally sunkissed skin. Hydrating, silky-smooth & long-wearing, it also protects against free radicals. Contains Vitamin E to protect the skin and mica, which provides dense natural pigment.

I'm not a huge fan of bronzer, but I do like to contour on occasion, so that's what I'll use this for. It's not as dark as the color I've used in the past to contour, but it will work for an extremely subtle look.

I used the Pixi Bronzer in the same pictures that I was wearing the EM lipstick. Here's the link again.

  • Nailtini Straight Up Color Nail Lacquer in Caviar Cocktail. Full size. $13 if you buy it from Nailtini's site.

Glamour is an attitude as much as a look, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't look the part...all the way down to your fingertips!

Just one of Nailtini's top-shelf, 3-free nail lacquer, available in dozens of shades, textures and finishes. Wear them alone or layered to create custom looks and effects, each one a cocktail unto itself. Cheers to beauty, and as always, apply responsibly! 

One drawback to Ipsy is that if there are only two variations of an item and you love one and hate the other, you get to worry about which one you'll get.  I was worried about the nail polish. I did not want the bronze color.  I am so happy I got the silver color!  I loved the formula of the Nailtini in the color Mai Tai I got back in July, so I thought I would love this one even more because the color was right for me.  Unfortunately, the formula of Caviar Cocktail isn't as good as the formula of Mai Tai. It's a little thick, streaky, and I got a clump on one of my nails.  Those things aside, I do love the color. The above swatch was using one coat of OPI Natural Nail base coat, and one coat of Caviar Cocktail, so this color is completely opaque in one coat.

  • BH Cosmetics Galaxy Chic Baked Eyeshadow. Sample size (one full size eyeshadow, rather than the entire palette of colors). Full size is $14.95 if you buy it from BH Cosmetics' site. Estimated value: $0.83.

 This Galaxy Chic Baked Eyeshadow Sample will take you from Plain Jane to an infinite trendsetter. Inspired by the moons and planets of the universe, eyeshadow shades range from hot sun-orange to cool earth-blue and colors of the Milky Way. Be as chic as a sparkling star! 

I read a review of the entire Galaxy Chic palette on XSparkage, and I'm really tempted to buy it. It's decently priced, and the colors are really pigmented with and without primer. I really like my sample. Eclipse is a shimmery eggplant color. The packaging is really good quality; it has a little magnet to keep it closed. For my estimated value of 83 cents, I think that's an awesome value. I hesistate to purchase the full Galaxy Chic palette because I've got my heart set on the Naked 3 palette by Urban Decay that will be out soon... I could probably get both, but, would I really use that many eyeshadows in addition to the amount I already own? And, of the 18 eyeshadows included in the Galaxy Chic palette, how many would I actually use?  That's something I still need to figure out.

I used Eclipse to smudge/blend my eyeliner in the post mentioned twice above. ;-)

  • Starlooks Gem Eye Pencil in Amethyst. Full size. $14 if you buy it from Starlooks' site.

In the shade
In the sunlight (Gem Eye Pencil in Amethyst on top, Lip Crayon in Hot Damn on bottom)
 The Starlooks Gem Eye Pencils provide a magnificent metallic finish and are so versatile, soft, and creamy that they can be used as a liner or eyeshadow base! Each highly-pigmented, unique pencil has a gorgeous, micro-glitter finish.

This is a very pretty color!  I don't see myself using this as an eyeliner or an eyeshadow base though. It's too light to be an eyeliner, and it would take too much work to blend it out as an eyeshadow base. I used it is a tear duct highlight and it looked pretty cool. I'll have to play with it some more to see what else I can use it for.

Bag Value
EM Lipstick: $16.50
Be a Bombshell Lip Crayon: $14
Pixi Beauty Bronzer: $18
Nailtini Polish: $13
BH Cosmetics Eyeshadow: $0.83 
Starlooks Eye Pencil: $14

Grand Total: $76.33

That makes this bag my highest value bag so far!  I found a new HG product in the EM lipstick, and I'm pretty pleased with everything else, besides the lip crayon.  Well worth $10 if you ask me!

Interested in trying Ipsy?  I'd love it if you used my link!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Learned in Raleigh

Moving to Raleigh was a good decision.  We originally thought we'd stay there more permanently, but it didn't work out that way.  I don't think it was a waste. It was a good transitioning period for our little family.  I also got to know my two youngest sisters a lot better.  I wasn't a very good big sister before I got married. Turns out, they didn't really know me at all, so I'm really glad we got to spend so much time together over the last three months.

While living with my parents and two youngest sisters, I learned lots of things. I learned a lot about myself, about my family, and about life outside of Utah.  Here are just a few of those lessons...

  • If you don't put it away, it will disappear.
I think one of my mom's favorite things to do is hide things.  Just kidding. ☺  But she is notorious for moving things that aren't put where they belong.  If I leave something on the kitchen counter in the evening, by the next morning it will have disappeared due to my mom moving it "out of the way." Sometimes she will remember where she put it, sometimes she won't. However, this lesson I learned doesn't only apply to my mom, it applies to Lily.  She can scramble a house faster than I can scramble a rubix cube.  So, living with my family taught me to put away and/or hide the items that are important to me or I may not ever see them again. This helps me in our new apartment because I'm in the habit of putting things away, and therefore, my house is more organized and clean than it has been in the past. I'm not a very good housekeeper, but I am trying.

  • If it's none of your business, keep your mouth shut.
This is a lesson I should have learned years ago. I tend to try to help people with their problems, but it's hardly ever (or never) well received. So, unless someone specifically asks for my help or advice, I need to butt out.  I think my help is not well received because I tend to notice what's wrong before I notice what's right.  So, that's also how I help people - pointing out what's wrong.  Nobody likes to be told what's wrong with them. I just wish people would understand that I don't mean to come across as rude or belittling. It's just what I notice. I'm working on pointing out positives before providing suggestions on things that could change or be better, but I have been working on that for a while. I just have to really think about what I say before I say it, or the real me comes out and I tell you what's wrong with <fill in the blank>, rather than what's right.

  • Always have something decent to wear when you wake up, no matter what you sleep in.
I lived in a motor home from the end of July to the end of October. When I got up in the morning, I had to walk across the yard to go into the house to shower.  I suppose I could have showered in the motor home, but that shower is tiny, I would run out of water fast, and it uses a lot of propane to heat the water. So, showering inside was easier and more comfortable.  Walking across the yard naked isn't something the neighbors or the rest of my family would like to see. So, I learned to always have some kind of clothing ready to wear the next day when I went to bed the night before. This lesson still applies to our new apartment because I now have to take the dogs outside each morning, and I can't do that naked either, unless I'd like to get arrested.

  • Condense your laundry.
Have you ever shared a laundry room?  It's been a loooooong time for me.  The only time in the past that I shared a laundry room was when Lance and I lived with his sister for a few months when we were first married.  It was not a pleasant experience.  Sharing with my mom wasn't bad, but I didn't want to take up her whole laundry room for a week like what I used to do at my own house.  I learned to do my laundry in one day, and to do laundry once a week.  This applies to our current apartment because I now have to go to the laundromat that is for residents only.  I do not have a washer or a dryer in my apartment.  This is definitely a first.  In fact, today was my first time using the laundromat.  Good times.  We could rent a washer and a dryer, but we're trying to spend as little money possible while Lance is out of a job.  But, even when he gets a job, I'm not sure we'll rush out and purchase laundry machines.  I mean, I pretty much enjoyed the laundromat.  Have you ever washed 4 loads of laundry at the same time?  It was AWESOME!  Once they were done washing, I separated out what needed to hang dry or lay flat to dry, and dried the rest. The machines at the laundromat here lock (not sure if they do that everywhere) so I didn't have to worry about someone stealing my machine, or moving my clothes. I went home while they dried, and went back when they were done.  I brought everything home, folded for a few minutes and BOOM, laundry done.  I could get used to this.

  • It really is different outside of Utah.

I've heard it a million times, "The church is different outside of Utah." Or, "The members are different outside of Utah." Or "People are less judgmental outside of Utah."  Drove me nuts.  But guess what?  It's true.  I don't want this to come across as bashing Utah. That's not my intention. There are people on both sides everywhere, I know.  But here's my personal experience: When we were planning to leave Utah, I was a little worried. "There will be more crime!" "People will be rude!"  Why did I think that?  Because I thought having fewer Mormons around would make me less safe.  WRONG!  Can you say judgmental? Hello, just because there are fewer people who are LDS, doesn't mean the people here aren't good people. I'm embarrassed to admit that I used to think differently. One's religion does not make them a good person. Likewise, one's lack of religion doesn't make them a bad person. There are good and bad people everywhere.  So, if I, myself, one who never thought of themselves as being a judgmental Utah Mormon, could be that judgmental, imagine how judgmental the really judgmental people are.

Does that even make sense?  I can't find the words to explain it.  People are simply more accepting here and in North Carolina, whether you're in their ward or not.  You know who's not very kind? Tourists. They are so pushy. (That's one way I can tell a tourist from a local.)

  • My sisters are pretty much the coolest people, ever.

Emilee and Jessica have been given some really awesome talents, and they aren't afraid to share those talents with others.  Jessica is extremely honest, even when she doesn't want to be. She also has a great gift of learning how to play instruments, and playing songs by ear. She can also sing really well.  Emilee obviously has an amazing singing voice, but she also has a really great ability to understand people. She just gets them. She also has a very strong testimony of the LDS church and she's not afraid to share it with anyone. She's the kind of person who makes me want to be a better person.

So there you go - just a few lessons I've learned.  Here are some silly pictures to (hopefully) make you forgive me for what I said about Utah:

Lily's hair flowing in the wind while she swings.

Mowing the lawn with Grandpa.

A Halloween mask - Dee Snider?

It fits my face a little too well, no? I should do my makeup like that, right?!

Lily's first ponytail.

Having fun going down a slide.

She can do it all by herself! She's so brave. :)

My hair is nasty! This was before I did my roots (But seriously, Paul Mitchell, my hair is super yellow. What the crap?!). But yeah, Lily and I actually kissed while she was swinging. She's such a sweetie.

This was at Big Lots. I need that chair.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Florida Living

The first week we lived here was really hard for me.  I was basically an emotional roller coaster. Everything made me sad, or angry, or annoyed.  There were boxes everywhere, ants everywhere, and the toilet in our master bath took 30 minutes to fill up with water after flushing.

Oh yeah and then there was a cockroach about 2 inches long (or longer) in our kitchen.

"Why did we move here?"

"What were we thinking?"

"What was the point of all this?"

"Where's my <fill in the blank>?" (Still can't find some things.)

I cried a few times.

And organizing the kitchen made me depressed.  I've never had a kitchen this small, ever.  I've been really spoiled with more than enough cupboard space.

But, after the first week, things have started looking up.  I'm really enjoying the weather.  It's been in the mid 80s, except yesterday it dropped to the 60s.  But, I still can't complain about that.

I'm enjoying our location. We're a couple blocks down from a Walmart Market. Do they have those in Utah?  I hadn't seen them before we moved here.  It's basically a produce only Walmart.  We're also really close to Aldi's which I hear has really good prices, but I haven't been there yet. Both a regular Walmart and Target are pretty close as well.

There is a mall around the corner, along with Burlington Coat Factory, Ross, and some other shops, but we haven't been over there yet.

We go to Disney parks a lot.  We purchased season passes back in September, so we're making good use of them. Tomorrow we'll be going to Hollywood Studios.  Once Lance gets a job we probably won't go as often.

Lily liked riding on Grandma's lap in the motor home.

It was a long drive from Raleigh to Kissimmee, but being able to roam around the motor home made it bearable.

Sometimes when Lily is grumpy, playing with a camera helps. This time it didn't.

This was right after we got done unloading the trailer into our apartment. This is basically everything we own - it's not much.

Hanging this up made me really happy. Katie made me this for Christmas last year and I absolutely love it.

This is a few days into unpacking. It looks worse before it looks better. All the cuboards in the kitchen were open because I couldn't figure out where to put things. But yeah, hardly enough cupboard space for one who loves appliances. And the camping chair is because we don't have a couch.

Going to parks makes her really sleepy.

I love how her foot is tucked under her leg and she's holding her cat.

Lily loves this ride! It's Journey Into Imagination with Figment. She waves at Figment when he shows up. :) Super cute!


I had a really good Halloween this year.

Lance had already left to begin the move down to Kissimmee, but I was still in Raleigh with my parents and two youngest sisters.

Emilee and I decided to make tutus.  Emilee and Lily dressed up like ballerinas. I didn't dress up. I'm not cool like that.

I had so much fun making Lily's tutu! And she looked stinkin' cute in it, too!

Here are some pictures:

Playing the piano while she waits for us to go Trick Or Treating.

She's ready to go!

Emilee and Lily walking down the street.

Lily had a little flashlight she was carrying. Also, how cute is Emilee? So cute!

The quality on this is really bad, but that's me and my baby girl!

Her tiny little bun. ♥

Lily had so much fun!  She didn't understand why people were giving her candy, but she loved it!  She never really did get the hang of saying "Trick or treat", but she did say "thank you." Granted, she said it after we had left the door step and were practically to the road, but she said it! Silly little thing.

You can't tell in the photos, but I unleashed an entire can of glitter spray on her.  She was so sparkly and so stinkin' cute!

Halloween in Raleigh was like Halloween in the movies.  The weather was perfect. It was so warm, we could wear whatever we wanted and be just fine.  The sidewalks were littered with yellow, red, and orange leaves that crunched when you walked.  It was gorgeous.

Special thanks to Emilee for helping me to participate in Halloween this year. I probably wouldn't have without her.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Nothing Really

I have so much I want to talk about. But I am also very tired, and I have to get up pretty early tomorrow. So here are two recent pictures so this post isn't completely retarded.
Living With the Land at Epcot

Our first day in our new place.  I too can't believe I've been going out in public with my hair looking like that.