Thursday, October 30, 2014

Pretty Little Beauty Swap Reveal

Good morning! I hope you're all enjoying this frigid cold weather. My fingers hurt typing sometimes. I should look into gloves or something. Anyway, I recently participated in the Pretty Little Beauty Swap with Southern Beauty Guide and I'm obsessed with my package. My partner was Gayle from A Gayle Force and I feel like we have very similar tastes in music. Those are always the best pairings. 

My hair is going to be thanking Gayle for the Tresemme heat protectant spray. It deals with a ton of heat to get rid of the curls. I'm excited to try the Not Your Mother's Kinky Moves cream because I'm always looking for great products to manage the curls when I'm not feeling the whole blow out process. I love the eyeshadows and I'm really excited to try the blush, nail polish and lips gloss. They're all colors that I would normally use. She also sent me a perfume sample which I'm interested to try. Finding new scents can be fun so we'll see how it goes.

Thanks Gayle!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Facebook Kind Of Giveaway

With change comes adaptation and bloggers know all about adapting to policy changes. Sometimes change springs forth ideas and this is exactly what happened with this giveaway! For those who do not know, Facebook likes will soon not be allowed as entry options in giveaways. This is exactly where the idea came for this giveaway! 

In this giveaway you will have the opportunity to win tons and tons of ad space, as well as a few gift cards to some amazing shop! All you have to do is Like Facebook our pages! Super simple right? Make sure you enter before it is too late! 
*Southern Beauty Guide// *My Fair Daily// Busy Being Jennifer{Homespun Happiness Shop}// *Kristie's Blue Jeans//*The Southern Thing// Bijoux Avenue// *Gettin' Fit Fab// *A Gayle Force// *Re•solve// *Glitz & Grits// *Life With a Side of Coffee// Keeping Up With Ashley and Cody// 
Life as Rachel {Country Couture}

*Indicates this participant is giving away ad space

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Good Luck!

Jessie J: Sweet Talker - A Review

source: Google Images - Direct Lyrics
One of my favorite things to write are album reviews. I love music and I love when artists I'm a fan of release new albums. It's not as exciting as it used to be because everything is online now but there's still an excitement to hitting play the fist time. A ton of new music has been released the last two weeks so today, I'm kicking it off with some soulful pop from the amazing Jessie J. This album is awesome. It has a really great blend of catchy, dance songs and stripped down ballads. Jessie is such a phenomenal vocalist. Her talent is remarkable. When she first came out, I wasn't so sure about her but she own me over with the title song "Who You Are" from her first album. It as such a gut wrenching song and it really spoke to me. The first time I heard that song was the second I became a fan.

I won't go into every single song but I can summarize and note my faves. "Ain't Been Done," "Burnin' Up," "Bang Bang," "Seal Me With A Kiss," "Said Too Much" and "Strip" are the upbeat jams on the album. They're great to dance to or just bob your head while working. "Ain't Been Done" is the screw you song of the album and perfect for getting pumped up. "Bang Bang" is my current obsession. I love collaboration between Jessie, Nikki and Ariana. It's a perfect dance song too. "Seal Me With A Kiss" felt like a Mariah Carey song from the 90s. I wasn't a fan. "Said Too Much" is another screw you song and I love it. It's one of my favorites off the album and will be on every girls' night playlist I put together for the rest of my life. Also her vocals are killer on this song. It's catchy enough to be her next single too, we'll see. I like "Strip" because it feels like a song that would be in a chick flick. Random thought there.
I think Jessie has perfected the ballad. "Fire" is such a compelling song and what a great build. It has the effect that makes your stomach clench and the emotion is just pouring out. I'm not a huge fan of "Personal." It's really emotional like the rest of her ballads but it just didn't do it for me. "Masterpiece" is the song that's telling us we haven't seen the best of her. It's a great song for moving on from a tough part in life. If you need a moving on playlist, this song is perfect. "Get Away" is another one of my favorite songs on this album. It's completely stripped down with just a piano accompaniment. You can practically feel the pain in her voice. It's so beautiful. Same goes for "You Don't Really Know Me." It's acompletely acoustic and her vocals are incredible. These two songs have a heartbreaking effect to them. "Your Loss I'm Found" is the last ballad off the album. Her vocals are amazing as always but I'm not a fan of the instrumentals. It just didn't feel connected to me.
These three songs didn't quite fit the bill for either of the above categories. They're more mellow or just different in nature. "Sweet Talker" is a really catchy song. It has a great beat but still has a laid back tempo and I love her vocals on the bridge of this song. "Keep Us Together" feels like a 90s ballad. It's not my favorite on the album and feels way too processed for me. Last but very not least, "Loud" is a duet with Lindsey Sterling who I absolutely love. This song has a great build and the violin has an eerie quality but in a good way. It gives me goosebumps. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Haunted Chicago With Musings Of A Museum Fanatic

Well hello there! Today, I've got a Q&A for you with Betsy of Musings of a Museum Fanatic. She's pretty awesome and I've had little convos with her before similar to this so it was a lot of fun thinking of new questions to ask her. We're talking museums, haunted Chicago and more. Check it out!

1. Tell us a little bit about you and your blog.
​I'm Betsy. I'm a born and bred (except a 5 winter stint in Minnesota) Chicagoian. As if you couldn't tell already I love museums. Don't worry this isn't just a blog about museums though! I'm a dabbler, I love to do a little bit of everything. From DIY to cooking to travelling to Pampered Chef and everything in between, I love it and love to share it with you! 

2. Where did your interest in museums come from? How did it start? 
Going to museums has always been something we've done as a family so I've always really enjoyed them. In high school I got more into enjoying history and it really wasn't until the last couple years of undergrad that I realized I could get a job working at museum. 

Source: Musings of a Museum Fanatic
3. What are your three favorite museums you've visited so far?
My three favorites would definitely be the Field Museum, Colonial Williamsburg and the British Museum. I've shared these and photos from my visits on other blogs before but not on my own yet. Keep an eye out for that post coming soon ; )

4. In celebration of Halloween, are there any haunted historical places you'd like to visit? Those are sort of like museums...right?
I'm actually kind of a big wimp. I don't do scary at all haha. Last October though, my friend Stephanie at Not Entirely Perfect convinced me to do some research and write on haunted Chicago museums. Supposedly the Field Museum is pretty haunted but I never felt anything weird when I worked there so here's hoping it's not!! 

Photo Credit: Musings of a Museum Fanatic
5. What have been some of your favorite exhibits? I particularly love the section dedicated to Impressionism in the Art Institute Chicago as well as The Impressionists at Le Musée Marmottan Monet. The collections from Monet they have there are spectacular as well.
The most recent favorite was the Opening the Vaults: Wonders of the 1893 World's Fair at the Field Museum. I'm a huge Chicago history person so the permanent Chicago: Crossroads of America at the Chicago History Museum is always one I enjoy going through. At other museums like the Museum of Science and Industry I have favorite artifacts I like to visit, like Colleen Moore's Fairy Tale Castle.

6. You've posted some great recipes and DIY projects lately. Anything you're excited to cook up or craft this fall?
Right now I'm working on cooking my way through the Pampered Chef cookbook 29 Minutes to Dinner as part of my 101 list. It's been going really well so far! I'm gearing up to do some crafting for Christmas gifts and have planned a craft day with one of my closest friends this weekend! We have found that by actually making a day of it and planning early we get more done. Although the scrapbook gift I'm making for her will have to wait for an alone session : )

Thank you Betsy for doing a Q&A sesh with me! I too love the Fairy Tale Castle at the Museum of Science and Industry. I never felt anything weird at the Field Museum either but now that I think about it, I always was freaked out in the Egyptian exhibit with the mummies. It could have just been my overactive imagination as a kid though. 

Make sure you stop by and say hello to Betsy! It sounds like she's got lots of exciting things coming up as well.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Fall TV: Constantine

Source: Google Images - IMDB
Friday, one of the freakiest TV shows I ever watched premiered for the very first time. Constantine is addicting and terrifying all at that same time. It's one of those shows that you can't help but watch even though you know you'll get nightmares. It also has a very interesting story too. Constantine is someone I'm still trying to figure out but here's what I've got so far. 

Constantine is a man who has a troubled past. We learn a little of his childhood in the first episode but we also get a lot of questions. He's definitely fighting for good but his soul seems to be caught between good and evil. What I mean by that is his soul is potentially damned to hell. It's just a matter of time only we don't know why yet. There's this big event coming soon and he is trying to prevent it. He casts demons, devils and other demonic creatures out of people's bodies and puts them back in hell along with his friend Chas. 

source: Google Images - Tv Guide
The angel sent to check up on him, Manny, doesn't seem to helpful or concerned for Constantine's well being. All the demonic creatures are super cryptic when they talk about his future. It's almost like both sides are working against him and he's all on his own. The great thing about him though is he's content with himself and has accepted his role in this apparent war. He claims to work best by himself but I can already tell he needs some sort of companionship. It doesn't necessarily have to be romantic but someone he can lean on and vice versa. Or, I could have this all completely wrong. 

Here's what I know for sure. Matt Ryan is a genius at playing Constantine. He's funny, sarcastic and embodies the character perfectly. I love his accent as well. This show has a bit of a horror element to it but it's got a great script and the banter is awesome. I feel like I need a few more episodes to really wrap my head around what is going on but I feel like that's customary when it comes to complicated plots and background stories. It all starts to figure itself out as time goes on.

Did you watch Constantine on Friday? What did you think? I'd love to hear some other thoughts on this show. 

Here are my other Fall TV premiere reviews!

And now I'd like to introduce you to one of my lovely sponsors. Her name is Chelsea and she blogs over at Olive + Ivy. Make sure you follow Chelsea on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter!

Halloween Giveaway!!

Happy Monday!! I have a little treat in store to brighten your day. For this month's giveaway, lots of bloggers and shop owners have come together for a Halloween giveaway! There is a ton of ad space available and a $75 gift card to Amazon so you can treat yourself to something on your wish list or use it to get a start on your Christmas shopping. Your choice!!

Participants: *Raewyn - Be A Warrior Queen // *Laura - Side Street Style // Taylor - Pink Heels Pink Truck // Katie - Beneath the Chandelier // Betsy - Musings of a Museum Fanatic // /*Chelsee - Southern Beauty Guide // *Brittany - Everyday Thoughts // *Gayle - A Gayle Force // *Christine - Life With A Side Of Coffee // *Lix - A Classic Notion // Brenda - Schooling A Monkey

*Indicates this participant is giving away ad space


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Sunday, October 26, 2014

Swapoween Reveal!

Happy Swapoween!! I'm revealing my Halloween swap box with you guys today. I loved this swap. It was so much fun and I loved getting to know my partner. Halloween is one of my favorite seasons I just hate dealing with people in costumes. I'm terrified of clowns and masks. I love the fun scary movies though, especially Hocus Pocus and anything Tim Burton. I also love unending amounts of chocolate and pumpkin which is why I was pumped about the M&M's my partner sent me. Why don't we meet her?

My partner was Karen from A Peek at Karen's World
I love the package she put together for me. I also laughed because we sent each other very similar things, some the exact same. For example, we both sent Funfetti mix and pumpkin carving tools. It was so funny. Anyway, here's my box! Let me tell you, the little ones were with me when I opened this and Josh, the younger one, just about freaked when he saw the marshmallows. I have a feeling he's going to annihilate that bag. I've convinced him to let us make some tasty treats though too. I'm baking the funfetti mix today for when they get home from their dads. I'll be posting a photo of it on Instagram!
Did you guys participate in the Swapoween Blogger Swap? What did you get?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

September Ipsy Bag Review: Street Style

One more day till the weekend! I'm getting a three day weekend and taking tomorrow off so I can stay home with my mama. She just had surgery so I took the day off to be with her and help out. I have a feeling it will be a day with blankets, movies and comfort food. Today, I have my September Ipsy review! I love this bag. My relationship with Ipsy was a little rocky at first but after 9 bags, I'm having a hard time parting with it. We'll see if I can actually pull the plug before the end of the year. Cutting costs is a real thing, people.

Crown Brush Infinity Shadow/Crease Duet Brush
What Ipsy Says: This dual-ended brush offers the best of both worlds. The shadow brush is perfect for applying eye shadow or contouring the eye, while the crease brush is designed to be used dry for defining the eye, or wet precision concealing.

What I Say: I love this brush. It's now my everyday brush for eye makeup. It's also a great room saver because you have two-in-one! How great is that?

Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask
What Ipsy Says: Repair and treat dry, damaged and breaking hair with Don't Despair, Repair! deep conditioning mask. Fortified with ultra-hydrating avocado, sweet almond & argan oils, strengthening keratin protein, power-conditioning rosehip oil, soothing aloe, and super hair-essential vitamins B5, D, A, E and biotin. This unique complex of targeted ingredients helps increase hair elasticity and moisture to prevent naturally-derived ingredients. This product is free of parabens, suflates, phthalates, silicones, artificial ingredients, artificial dyes, and gluten. 

In lab studies, the use of Don't Despair, Repair! resulted in 81% less hair breakage after just three uses.

Safe for color-treated, chemically-treated, and keratin-treated hair. For those with fine or thin hair, we recommend focusing the treatment on the mid-length to the ends of the hair only, and rinsing thoroughly.

What I Say: Deep conditioners and hair masks are popular inclusions for beauty boxes. I've tried quite a few of these and it's even gotten me in the habit of doing it once a week. With that said, I've developed a pretty strong opinion when it comes to these now since I have a preference in what I'm looking for after using a product like this. I wasn't thrilled with this particular one. I didn't notice any significant results after its use. It just didn't impress me to be honest.

Cailyn Art Touch Tinted Lip Gloss
What Ipsy Says: Intensely colorful and artistically glossy. CAILYN Art Touch Tinted Lip Gloss delivers the stunning color impact of a lip stain and high shine of a lip gloss. This silky smooth gloss glides on your lips like butter, leaving you with a lacquer like finish.

What I Say: I received this in Love Affair. This seems like a really great lip product. I haven't worn it out yet but I tried it on and I was surprised at how much I liked it. I'm typically not into red lip colors but this one worked. It's also very smooth and glossy which I loved.

LeeAnni Eco 3-in-1 Revolution Light
What Ipsy Says: Lighter version of 3 in 1 Revolution. Great for normal to oily skin and during warmer weather. Toner, serum, and moisturizer in One. This Revolutionary Lotion will save you time during busy morning rush and moisturize your face all day long! Help tighten skin, reduce breakouts, relieve dark circles under eyes, moisturize, fight aching, treat sun damages, and calm irritated. 

What I Say: I brought this little guy with me on vacation because it was easy to travel with. It was a great product in terms of moisture but it's a bit too heavy for my oily skin. It didn't give me breakouts but it didn't soak in as much as I'd like. I had a greasy-like feel long after applying. I probably won't continue to use this regularly when I get home unless I include it in an overnight bag.

Pacifica 7 Free Nail Polish
What Ipsy Says: Our new 7 Free Nail Polish is long lasting and void of many chemicals that one would find in traditional nail polish. Amazing vibrant colors that go on smooth and stay put. Plus we have added a custom wide 100% vegan brush for easier application. 7 Free is formulated without parabens, phthalates, toluene, xylene, camphor, formaldehyde, resin, and animal byproducts. Ipsters received this in Red Red Wine.

What I Say: This is such a pretty color and that says a lot coming from someone who doesn't prefer reds on her nails. It was almost a blood red but a bit brighter. It applied easily and super smooth and dried fairly quickly. I'm impressed with this polish.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

How To Survive A Horror Movie

Photo Credit: Man Crates
I recently took a quiz online to find out how long I'd last in a horror movie and I came out as First Blood. It didn't mean I was the first kill, it meant I was the first one to die gruesomely so an example could be made of me. The funny thing is, I just retook the quiz with the same exact answers and it said I was the Final Girl meaning I made it all the way through. In other words, I'm not sure how accurate the quiz is. 

For Halloween, Man Crates has put together a Zombie Annihilation Crate to make it through a Zombie Apocalypse. Man Crates is a company that puts together unique and original gifts for men in a wooden crate that even has to be opened with a crowbar. How awesome is that? Anyway, can I just say really quick...if there was every a zombie takeover, I think I'd die immediately. I am so unbelievably terrified of zombies and the idea that one screw up in science could make it happen that I think my heart would just stop beating right there. I wouldn't be able to process it. Between that quiz I took and it being Halloween soon, I thought it would be fun to participate in this horror movie business and create my list of five things to include in a horror movie so I could make it through to the end. Here we go!

1. My best friend Yeni because she is my partner in crime. We can survive anything together, I'm sure of it. Between my paranoia and her very strong state of mind, we have the perfect balance. I expect the worst, she determines when I'm being ridiculous or when I have a point. To top it off, if this were being filmed for entertainment we'd be a hit. Seriously, a box office smash.

2. A portable phone charger. This one I'm stealing from Man Crate's "Horror Film Survival Strategy" because it's a good one. There are two phone issues that typically lead to trouble in a scary movie. The first is no service but considering I would never, under any circumstances, find my self in a remote area, it doesn't apply to me. The second is the low and ultimately dead battery. That's an easy fix if we all carried around portable chargers!!! I'm investing in one right now because this post is making me paranoid (obviously).

Photo Credit: Google Images - Crazy Town Blog
3. An escape route. We have got to have a reliable escape route. Honestly, this would probably depend on the movie or situation. If we were in the city avoiding a serial killer or, god help me, zombie apocalypse, I know just what I'd do and where I'd go. Put me in a haunted house, I'm done for. Yeni would have to take the lead there. I'd be an absolute wreck.

4. A bad ass axe like Buffy used in the final season. Why? because it's the ultimate weapon to kill anything. It has a wooden stake to take care of vamps and stab anything else that moves. The blade is silver (hopefully) which would kill werewolves and the thing could easily bash in a zombie's brain. In regards to anything human, you're totally covered. My advice would be to burn all the bodies to be safe though. I mean, I hope there's only one thing after us but  you never know.

5. Xanax or something of the sort. I'm convinced that the most paranoid of the bunch are the ones that die. Yeni wouldn't need this but if I were in a horror movie, I think a Xanax would take my paranoia down just enough so that I could be the perfect partner in crime. I'd still be slightly paranoid which is good for awareness but I wouldn't be in a hippy-like, everything's fine mood hat would definitely lead to my demise.

So what about you? What are the top things you'd want to include to help you survive a horror movie?

I also had to include this little fun bit from Man Crates. They created 10 Commandments of the Horror Film World and I just about died laughing while reading them especially because #1 is so typical me.
Courtesy of Man Crates

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