Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Review: e.l.f. Disney Villains Look Books

One of my many guilty pleasures is watching makeup guru videos on YouTube, so last year when I came across a video that announced the launch of an e.l.f. makeup palette featuring Disney villains, my eyes were glued to the screen. How perfect! Something that combined two of my favorite things: makeup and Disney. These special products were out for a limited time at Halloween and only at select Walgreens. I immediately jumped in the car to find them. After all, looking good is still a part of domestic bliss...

I purchased one of each of the three featured villains (Cruella, Evil Queen, and Maleficent) and let my mom and sister each pick one and kept the last one for myself. I ended up with Maleficent.

This year, they launched the look books again, but in addition to the three villains mentioned above, Ursula joins the bunch. My sister was so excited and inspired by the one I gifted her last year, when she spotted that they maybe another appearance this year, she picked up one of everything just for me. I was very excited, but thought I should share, at least a little bit, so I convinced her to keep the Evil Queen set for herself.

Last year, each look book contained a set of false eyelashes. This year, instead of the false eyelashes being included, they were sold separately. The lashes are actually ARDELL brand versus e.l.f. and each villain has three sets of different (and flashy) false eyelashes with glue. I didn't even try the included lash glue last year: it looked like superglue and scared me. This addition looks much better.

Beyond that, e.l.f. also put out a nail polish set that includes three colors for each villain. The colors are great to look at, but I haven't actually opened the bottles yet, so I can't speak of the quality. There are also a set of hair ties that belong to each villain and yep, you guessed it, I got those, too! Is my sister the best or what?

But let's get back to this year's look books. Each package includes: a mascara, pencil eyeliner, liquid eyeliner, a six-color eyeshadow palette, eye primer, and eyeshadow brush, and a lip gloss. Each villain has her own distinct eyeshadow and lip colors, but the products are all the same.

The Breakdown:

Mascara - This mascara is certainly nothing to write home about. It's fine. It's actually better than I thought it would be. It does a good job separating the lashes, but I felt it left them looking thin. Maybe it would work as a second coat on top of a thickening mascara, but it didn't do much defining by itself.

Would I purchase separately? No.

Pencil eyeliner - What I enjoy about this pencil liner is that it doesn't pull or tug on the eyelid. Even just a light touch and you will deposit a thin black line; however, the pencil doesn't smudge well at all. It creates a precise line, but if you're going for a smokey eye, you may find yourself wiping it right off versus giving your eye a smoldering effect. Note: I didn't try it in the waterline, which I suspect it may actually be good for. I have extremely sensitive eyes and typically do not have good reactions to products applied to my waterline.

Would I purchase separately? No.

Liquid eyeliner - This liner has a good applicator. You can apply it in thin strokes or longer swooshes. It's jet black and dries that way. Another plus. The formula is a little more watery than I like, but it goes on easy without drying too quickly so you can touch it up a bit if you don't get the shape you were aiming for the first swipe. Once it dries, it stays in place. It kind of reminds me of paint. Quite a good liquid liner really.

Would I purchase separately? Possibly, if I were looking for a fun look. I usually prefer a gel liner pot or creamier pencil.

Eyeshadow palette - This is obviously the main reason to buy this product other than the fun factor. I was really happy that this year the eyeshadow palette actually came in a case with a mirror so you could add it to your regular makeup collection or throw it in your purse. The colors for each villain are different, but the quality is surprising good. With the included eye primer, the color lasted all day without creasing. The pigmentation payoff was surprisingly good and with the mixture of matte and metallic colors you can create great day or evening looks. The only complaint I have with the eyeshadow palette is that there are no color labels on the compact itself. Once you take it out of the package, you don't know what the names are. Note: I do not know if these are special colors just for the books or if they are colors normally in the e.l.f. line just with new names to complete the package.

Would I purchase separately? Yes. I was more than happy with this shadow, the textures, the colors, and the pigmentation. I'd actually choose it over some of my most expensive eyeshadows.

Eye primer - I was really pleased with this eye primer. The color is nude and it's a thin liquid that dries to a powder texture almost immediately when you blend it with your finger. I applied it under the eyeshadow. It didn't create a cakey texture and lasted all day. I think I actually like it better than the Smashbox and Urban Decay primers that I have, though not as much as Too Faced Shadow Insurance, all of which make my top cut. I'd also be willing to bet, when purchased separately, it's a lot more affordable than the aforementioned!

Would I purchase separately? Definitely. It worked great and had an appealing consistency. It also competes with my high priced eye primers.

Eyeshadow brush - This brush is full-size which is nice. It actually has bristles, and it isn't a sponge-tipped applicator so it's already better than what a lot of palettes come with. It's kind of a short-bristled, flat, rounded shader brush. I'd say it's somewhat comparable to a MAC 239 brush. Obviously, not as high quality, but really actually decent to have on hand for quickies. Mine were all bent slightly upwards when I first took them out of the packaging, but began to lay flat after a only a short time.

Would I purchase separately? It wouldn't be my first choice of makeup brush for everyday use, but it's nice to have as part of a bigger collection. It's good for patting eyeshadow on and would probably work well for cream eyeshadows as well. I like having extra brushes for cream shadows because they get messy so quickly.

Lip gloss - Of course we all have more lip gloss than we know what to do with, and this one is just your run of the mill lip gloss. I will give it credit for not being sticky. Sticky lip glosses just annoy me. It didn't seem moisturizing, but it wasn't drying. It gave a pretty, sheer wash of color. Again, it's fine. Nothing special. But as you might already know about me, I'm really a lipstick girl anyway.

Would I purchase separately? It's not that I didn't like this, I just probably wouldn't buy any lip gloss at the moment. I just have so many already!

Overall, just for the fun of Halloween, makeup, and Disney Villains, these look books were worth the price as a treat. But the fact that these goodies actually produced pretty, everyday, wearable looks made them a real steal. Now factor in the idea that (especially with the additional purchase of the eyelashes) you can kick it up and notch and add some more festive looks, you really can't go wrong with these sets!

Well, maybe buying every single piece of every single set was a bit costly so don't get carried away...or do!

These were a nice step up from last year and I would definitely buy them again next year. It's a exciting new tradition to add the the mix. Personally, I'll take makeup over pumpkin guts any day! Happy Halloween all!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Domestic Bliss Tip - Homemade Wood Polish

While I was browsing Procrastination Central a.k.a. Pinterest the other day, I came across an all natural recipe for Wood Polish. Actually, I came across several, but this simple recipe called to me. It required little effort and only two economical ingredients: olive oil and distilled white vinegar. The recipe I saw called for 3/4 cup olive oil and 1/4 cup vinegar, but I was skeptical whether this would work or not. I just used the 3:1 ratio and mixed together 3/4 tsp olive oil and 1/4 tsp vinegar. I dipped my microfiber rag into the concoction and got to work.
My results:
The wood looks revitalized in my opinion. Of course the deeper scratches will still require sanding and refinishing, but this is a quick and easy trick that does make wood visually appealing in a snap. I even used it on my wooden banister that the cat has clawed up. Again, a huge improvement but it won't fix the deep marks. It may not be a perfect solution, but it definitely fits into greening my environment. And it helps while I'm following FlyLady, making things look prettier!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Domestic Bliss Tip - Removing Drywall from Clothing

If you've been here before, you probably already know that I'm a self-professed perfectionist which keeps me from getting a lot of things done. It's like there is a really mean boss-lady inside of my head, but I can't quit my job because boss-lady is actually me! On the bright side, this means she can't actually fire me even though it hasn't stopped her from trying over the years.

Every time I even have an idea for a blog, that boss-lady is there challenging the quality of my ideas. If I can actually find a topic to please her, she may let me begin to draft it. But this process is longer and more daunting than one would typically imagine. So this evening I decided as part of my journey to domestic bliss, I'm going to start going right over her head. I may not always have the best idea for a blog post, or a great story, or perfect picture to go along with it. Who cares? Probably only her.

So for my very first Journey to Domestic Bliss (JDB) Tip, I want to share something I just learned this evening. You may never even encounter such a problem, but now if you do, you will be lucky enough to have the answer.

JDB Tip - If there is ever a time when you end up with loose, crumbled drywall on your clothes, brushing it away with your head won't get you all cleaned up. You'll actually need to vacuum the dry dust off the material to be rid of it.

Silly subject I know, but after we installed our new walk-in closet, my husband had to do some last minute adjustments. This left about a quarter of my blazers and jackets covered with a fine dust of drywall and me looking for a solution. So there you have it. Hoover away!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

TAG: The Sunshine Award

I have to admit, I'm pretty excited to have been tagged by Ashley over at GreenBeautyLife. If you aren't yet familiar with her blog, you should really check it out! She's a girl after my own heart, trying to go green with her cosmetic choices and she does some excellent reviews on products. Honestly, I could read her blog all day.

As I've just gotten back into blogging, I don't have as many posts as I would like, so what better a way to let you know a bit more about me to add this award post and also introduce you to some other blogs you may not have come across yet.

Here are the rules for the Sunshine Award:
  • Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Answer 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you.
  • List 11 bloggers. They should be bloggers you believe deserve the recognition.
  • Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer, and let all of them know that they have been nominated.

    11 Random Facts About Me:
    1. I'm a recovering perfectionist. My mantra is: I'm not perfect, as that's okay, as long as I'm doing  the best I can.
    2. I have seen every episode ever aired of the "Real Housewives" franchise.
    3. I hate the taste of beer. I'm all about champagne.
    4. Some of my favorite jewelry pieces are from Tori Spelling's HSN line.
    5. I'm obsessed with makeup, but most days I don't even wear it.
    6. I'm a brunette, my husband is a blond, and my baby girl is a redhead...every time we walk into a room it's like the opening line of a joke.
    7. I'm a bit of a hoarder.
    8. I do most of the reading in the bath, even on my iPad and Kindle.
    9. I'm kind of a know-it-all and I hate that about myself.
    10. I have over 50 pairs of shoes.
    11. My favorite sound in the entire world is my baby girl's laugh.
    11 Questions from Ashley:
    1. What is your favorite article of clothing that you own?
    Tough question! I have a lot of clothes. And I certainly have a favorite pair of shoes, but if I had to pick a favorite article of clothing it would be my Michael Kors black leather motorcycle jacket with lots of silver hardware. It looks good with almost everything!
    2. Favorite place you've ever been?
    Venice, Italy on my honeymoon. I swoon just thinking about it.
    3. Favorite scent?
    Another tough one. I also have a ton of perfume. I love Dior, Hypnotic Poison and the original Burberry.
    4. Would you rather have a chocolately dessert or fruity one?
    Chocolately, all day, any day. But add some raspberry and that's just sinful!
    5. Name a weird habit that you just can't shake!
    I save old voicemails. I want to be able to hear people's voices even after they're gone.
    6. What color are your nails right now?
    They're completely bare at the moment. I wash my hands so frequently at the moment!
    7. Name one beauty product that you continuously repurchase.
    Avon's lipgloss in "Magnificent Mauve."
    8. Favorite movie/TV show?
    For years it has been "What Not to Wear" so I guess I will have to find a new one soon. Heartbreaking!
    9. Favorite type of food?
    I love Italian food. Except pizza. I'm not a big fan of pizza.
    10. How big is your makeup collection?
    So big! It fills my bathroom and spills out into my bedroom. And you can find more in more purse and pretty much every room in the house. It just keep growing and growing.
    11. Favorite place to go shopping?
    I'd love to go to Nordstrom any day for the atmosphere, but I love JC Penney's affordable prices and trendy styles. 
    Tag, You're It! The 11 Bloggers I Tag!
    My 11 Questions for You 
    1. What inspires you the most in life?
    2. What advice would you give you yourself from five years ago?
    3. If you could change any body part, what would it be?
    4. What's your go to outfit for a casual, crisp Fall day?
    5. Name your favorite magazine.
    6. If you had to recommend a good book to a friend, what would that book be?
    7. What is the one song, that whenever you hear it, you can't help but shake your groove thing?
    8. Do you have a signature scent?
    9. What's your go-to recipe?
    10. Where are you going on your next vacation?
    11. What's the best compliment you've ever received?
    Okay, I can't wait to hear your answers! I hope you have as much fun with this little exercise as I did!


    Wednesday, October 16, 2013

    Homemade Rosemary Leaf Extract

    While I'm working on some projects to try and become more blissfully domesticated, I don't have one to share just yet. But in the meantime, if you're interested in greening your environment, check out my latest post on Green My Beauty Routine about my attempt at making my own Homemade Rosemary Leaf Extract!

    Thursday, October 10, 2013

    Green My Beauty Routine

    I love cosmetics. I'm a makeup junkie, my perfume collection could keep a dozen people smelling delicious for a lifetime, and I have a beauty product for just about any task you can think of: dry skin, blemishes, oily hair, sunburns, sunscreen, faux sun, stretch marks, spider get the idea.

    It wasn't until I was pregnant that I started paying attention to what I was actually putting onto my skin. I thought about what I might be absorbing into my skin, and in turn, what my baby might then be absorbing. Figuring out which ingredients were safe and which weren't was a daunting task. Decidedly, I stopped using most of my cosmetics cold turkey.

    One day while at the library, I was thumbing through some books about makeup. I glanced up and realized there were quite a few on DIY natural cosmetics. Well, I love a good project and even more, picking up a new hobby, and thus, in idea was born. I gathered up some of the books, took to internet research, and added another aspect to my journey to domestic bliss.

    My first foray into making my own natural cosmetics right from my own kitchen was easy enough. Lipstick was how I began my obsession with cosmetics. My grandma's hot pink lipstick was my gateway drug. It sounds funny to say it out loud, but it's been a life-long dream of mine to make my own lipstick.  It only seemed right that it would be my original undertaking.

    So I got to work. I ordered a few of the harder to find ingredients online, but collected most of what I needed from Walgreens. While you can make it without a true lipstick mold, I just felt like it wasn't lipstick if it wasn't in the pretty shape you find in the professional tubes. I ordered that online, too.

    My first two homemade lipstick creations!

    In the end, I had some beautiful, natural, moisturizing tubes of lipstick. I made them in very little time and it was fun imagining up the colors. My only complaint is that it paints only a sheer wash of color on my lips. It does work well for everyday color, a slight pick me up. On the agenda for the next time though, formulating a more pigmented option.

    In addition to this blog, I've dedicated a separate blog to hold all my recipes. My trials and my errors. For more info and recipes check it out: Green My Beauty Routine

    Wednesday, October 9, 2013

    FlyLady - Check-in One

    Our kitchen whiteboard helps me plan. Each week we list what
    will be for dinner and what FlyLady's Daily Mission is.
    They always say that babies don't come with instruction manuals. Well, life as a stay at home mom doesn't come with a manual either! It's actually a lot easier to find a book on how to take care of a baby than it is to find a book on how to take care of a household. I guess for some it may just be common sense, an easy transition, or skills you acquire throughout your life, but to me, it is a whole new ballgame.

    Don't get me wrong, I know how to cook, do laundry, wash dishes, and the mundane that we all must do to get by, but when you're a SAHM, you have to learn to function in your house a majority of your day. On top of that, you have to learn to do it with a new little person constantly demanding attention and interrupting your every thought. (But it truly is my favorite job in the whole wide world.)

    Rewind to a few months ago, when I told you about and how I was hoping to follow this system on my journey to domestic bliss. Though my blog got put on the back burner (yet again) while I tried to regain control over certain aspects of life as a new SAHM, FlyLady has been something I was actually able to stick with. Believe it or not, the system is working; one Babystep at a time!

    I still have a long way to go, but I'm getting better about letting go of perfection and instead getting right down to work. I've taken some pressure off myself and instead of the mess that is my house getting worse, it actually started looking better, thanks to my new outlook. Apparently, all I really needed was a place to start. As simple as it sounds, I just needed someone to tell me what to do.

    I've found through working with this system, I am quite successful as long as a set teeny, tiny realistic goals for myself. Sometimes my goal is as small as: Take a Shower. Sometimes I think bigger and say: Redo Master Closet. I'm pleased with the progress I've made so far and am excited to keep going.

    My next small step goal: Go to the post office (with an eight-month-old baby, that's harder than it sounds)
    My next big leap goal: Create a household organizer

    I'm Back! Get Up Off That Thing and Follow Me

    I'm looking forward to getting back into blogging now that things are a little less crazy around here. I hope you'll join me on my journey. Adventure awaits!

    Follow my blog with Bloglovin

    Wednesday, April 3, 2013

    FlyLady - First Impressions

    As I mentioned in my last post, I was introduced to a website called FlyLady. The website is all about overcoming your perfectionism and "finally loving yourself" (hence the word FLY). So what better a way for me to find domestic bliss than to follow this program!

    Let me start by giving you my version of how it works. Each month, FlyLady introduces us to a new habit that we should try to incorporate into our daily routine. In addition to the monthly habit, each week we are given a "zone" in the house to focus on. For instance, this week we dedicate our time to taking care of "Zone 1" which includes: the entrance, front porch, and dining room. Since I signed up to receive the emails (free), FlyLady breaks it down even more, giving me daily missions on what specifically to do in that zone for the day. The email also includes a daily routine schedule that you should eventually adapt for everyday use. (This is just a quick overview, check out the site,, for more details.)

    So here are my first impressions of the FlyLady system:

    Almost immediately after I signed up for the emails, I was bombarded with them! They were completely overwhelming. I wasn't sure if I needed to read all of them and I also didn't feel like I had the time to since some of them were quite long. I wondered what I had gotten myself into (there is a "lite" version with one email a day, but I was afraid that might become too easy for me to ignore).

    Quickly, I realized I'm really just interested in the daily "Flight Plan" emails and deleted or set the other emails aside for the time being.  I really love how the "Flight Plan" tells me the monthly habit I need to work on, gives me a daily mission for my "zone" and includes a specific daily routine. Personally, I feel like I follow direction really well, so it definitely helps me to accomplish something. Otherwise, I tend to feel overwhelmed and don't end up doing anything!

    As I said, I can become overwhelmed easily, but FlyLady has a solution for that. According to FlyLady, the best way to avoid getting overwhelmed or sidetracked is to break things down into small tasks and stick with them for 15 minutes, then move on to something else. It is true that you won't believe how much you can actually get done in 15 minutes! I kept saying I couldn't get anything done because I was too busy with my two-month old daughter or just too exhausted. It's pretty easy to squeeze in a 15 minute task during one of her naps or when my husband comes home and can relieve me for a short break. I just tell Siri on my iPhone to set a 15 minute timer and go to work. The best part is I can give myself permission to stop working on the project even if it isn't done perfectly (well honestly, I'm still working on that part)!
    So overall, FlyLady is already helping me to see that in letting go of being perfect, our lives actually become a little more perfect and a lot less chaotic. I'm excited to continue working on both the monthly habits and the daily missions while working toward finding domestic bliss. Check back here to follow up on my progress!

    Have you tried FlyLady? What do you think of the system? What works for your routine?

    *Note - This review is my personal opinion. I have not been asked by the website to review it; I am just sharing my journey to domestic bliss and hope the help it provides can be a part of my success. 

    Monday, April 1, 2013

    Two Months Later...

    Two months ago, I was trying to find something to do with all my time. Now that my little girl has arrived, I am just trying find a second to get anything done!

    A lot has happened in the last two months here. My mom passed after a two and a half year battle with breast cancer. My husband's grandfather unexpectedly passed while traveling internationally. And Halle, my little bundle of joy, was born.

    Needless to say the past two months have been hectic and chaotic. I've had to do a lot of life adjustments and assessments, but it's all a part of finding my domestic bliss.

    Life with a newborn is far from routine, but I realize now that didn't have a good routine down anyway. Now I'm committing to finding a good routine. Recently, I was introduced to a website called FlyLady. Her website is all about letting go of perfectionism. It's perfect for me right? (No pun intended.) I'm going to use her daily emails and monthly missions to help me get my life a little bit more under control. And just maybe, I will find my domestic bliss.

    Have you ever heard of FlyLady? What do you think of the website?

    Keep following my adventures to see how it turns out!

    Thursday, January 24, 2013

    Making A List, Checking It Twice

    Now, Christmas may have come and gone, but I still think it's appropriate to take a cue from Santa himself. Make a list and check it twice. Recently, I've learned that this is the approach that works best for me.

    So, I make a list for everything. Lately, it's the only way I've been able to get anything done. I have about a million things running through my head and countless tasks that need to be taken care of, so it's no wonder I find myself quickly overwhelmed when I'm ready to start my day.

    On my journey to domestic bliss, I've been working on how to make a good, productive list instead of wasting hours making lists that I never even glance at again. I've always had a strange penchant for office supplies, weird I know, but that means that over the years I have collected a lot of different items for list-making. From post-it notes and plain white paper, to Kate Spade day planners and Apple devices, I've tried just about every mode of list-making there is.

    For me, a piece of paper that says "To-Do" at the top isn't ideal. Sure it works, but it's a starting point really. It's a place where I can collect my thoughts, but it doesn't help me prioritize and it doesn't motivate me. Yes, I have to motivate myself; I have to tell myself exactly what to do and when to do it. Otherwise, I write down an incomplete list of some things that I need to do and then leave the list strewn somewhere, only to be recycled later. Usually at that point, nothing from the list is actually accomplished, but I've created an updated one somewhere else.

    While I love that my iPhone, iPad, and iPod all sync together so that I have all my events and reminders are in several places, typing out specifics feels like it takes too long and it's harder to edit than just being able to quickly hand-write and scribble on. I feel somewhat limited in what I can list because of the formatting and if I have many things going on at once, they tend to get muddled together. That was the problem I was trying to solve in the first place!

    I've checked out an array of websites with ideas, some that have really worked for me, and others that have failed me miserably. I'm still trying to figure out what works best for me, what ultimately will make me more productive. As I continue my journey, I will be sharing some more of these ideas and reviewing what works and what doesn't. Check back soon if you're into list-making, too. Or leave a comment below with you're favorite list-making tips!

    And in the meantime, if you love visually appealing lists and organization tools, check out this adorable website I found, complete with free pre-made lists to print! Hello, Cuteness!

    Tuesday, January 15, 2013

    My Take On Thank You Notes

    Today I realized it has been exactly one month since my baby shower. I figured that now was the best time to write my thank you notes while I'm still anxiously awaiting the arrival of my little girl and while I still have a free moment. As I started collecting all of the things I needed to write my thank yous, I wondered what the proper time frame for sending them out was. Was I already late? Still within the window? I decided to do some research as part of my journey to domestic bliss.

    It was hard to find a definitive answer about the time frame for sending out baby shower thank yous. In general, it seems that thank you notes should be sent out within one or two weeks of receiving the gift. Personally, I think that time frame seems a little short, but maybe that's because I'm already well outside of it. Four weeks feels like an acceptable amount of time. Four weeks gives a person time to enjoy their gifts and gives them time to recover from the party that they may have had. I certainly don't want people stressing out about having to get thank yous out right away when I give them a present.

    Anything longer than four weeks may be pushing it, but it seems that the rule "better late than never" applies to thank yous. I have to admit, I agree with that. If someone has generously spent their time and money to give me a gift, really the least I can do it write a little, personal note to show my gratitude. Back in September, I went out of my way to pick up a gift off a friend's wedding registry. Having never received a thank you note, I still wouldn't mind if I got one now, even though it's been over three months. It is something the perfectionist in me took notice of without even meaning to, but it is also something the imperfectionist in me understands and forgives. Do you remember when people don't send you a thank you note?

    Moving past the time frame, the way I see it, the task of sending out thank yous is a two part task. There's the addressing of the envelopes and then there's the actually writing inside the card. Let's break it down.

    While doing my research I saw many complaints about addressing the envelopes. Many times people suggested having guests fill out their own envelopes at the baby shower, giving the mom-to-be one less thing to do. While I've been asked to do this before, I'm not a big fan of this approach. It just seems to me that this wouldn't fall into the "proper etiquette" category. And more than that, presumably you just mailed invitations to all of these people. Here's my suggestion: Use your online address book to make address labels. Provide the host of your baby shower with one copy for invitations (something I'm sure she'd appreciate) and print off a second copy to use for your thank yous. It takes no time at all! (Every Christmas, I use this same approach. I create my labels by doing a mail merge in Microsoft Word. Our Christmas cards = domestic bliss. So why not take what works and apply it here?) I have heard the argument that it's impersonal not to hand-write the envelopes, but I think as long as you're handwriting something personal on the inside of the card, the envelope doesn't really matter. People are just going to recycle it anyway.

    Now, the second part, writing the message on the inside of the card, that's the part that I find daunting. I never know exactly what to write. It's best to keep it simple, but specific. You should thank the gift-giver for their specific present, and if possible, say how you're going to use it or what you already used it for. One suggestion I came across in my research was to write in the voice as the baby. While I think it's sort of sweet, it also sounds a little bit crazy. If you're going to do that, I would say at least wait until the baby is born. My favorite tip is this: type out your message first, and then hand-write it. This may sound a little more time-consuming, but it really isn't. You can probably type a lot faster than you can write, and you can edit what you say a lot easier. It's also great for spell checking! Decide what you want to say and then quickly copy it down into the actual card.

    And there you have it, my take on thank you notes! I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject, too. Comment below.

    Thursday, January 10, 2013


    While I'm not necessarily new to blogging per se, I've decided to start a new blog now that I've learned a few things from my past experiences.

    The reason I decided to start this new blog is because I'm starting a new venture in my life. Getting married two and a half years ago and then purchasing and living in our very first house shortly after, in the last few years, life has been all about adjusting. But as they tend to do, things are changing again and we are anxiously awaiting the arrival of our first child. Our baby girl is due in just ten short days!

    So yes, it is probably the craziest time to even think about starting a new blog, seeing that life as I know it is about to change forever, but I find writing is therapeutic in a time of chaos. It's when I can best tap into my feelings and emotions and usually the writing process helps me to organize my thoughts in a way I normally couldn't. We'll see if it actually lasts, but hey, it's helping me in the meantime and that's what matter most, I suppose.

    The reason I tended to stop blogging in the past was because of my obsessive need to be perfect. I needed to write a perfect post about the perfect topic and include a perfect picture to boot. Needless to say, that became an overwhelming and impossible task and slowly I stopped writing all together.

    That obsessive need I have to be perfect carries over into pretty much everything I do. I find myself unable to start tasks at times because either I know I won’t be able to do it perfectly, or I know it will take every ounce of energy I have to get it perfect (or at least to meet my high standards anyway).

    My goal for this blog is to help myself as I journey this new path of motherhood while still adjusting to married life, homeownership, and my general lack of skill in the domestic goddess category. And if I can help someone else along the way, then that would just be icing on the cake (that I made from a box, not scratch). Let’s face it; we could all use a little help sometimes.

    Will I strive for perfection? Yes. Will I find it? Not likely. How will I deal with it? Only time will tell. I invite you to share my struggles and triumphs with me and hope you’ll share yours with me, too!