Friday, November 22, 2019



*Yes, these are on the spendy side, but they were fun to add to the list and they're a work of art. 
No, I might not be able to afford them, but I do like to help other people spend their money. Ha!

P.S. Stay tuned for more Gift Guides next week— Monday: The Preppy Pal, Tuesday: The Trendy Tot, and Wednesday: $30 or Less. You'll notice I opted to not include prices this year because it's hard to keep up with all of the sales and promotions. By publishing Gift Guides earlier this year, I hope you're able to snag a few good deals. Happy hunting!

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Friday, November 15, 2019


Let's get right to it, shall we?
Here's what made me feel all twitterpated, smile contagiously, giggle uncontrollably, etc.

Have a fabulous weekend, m' dears! Make it count.
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Thursday, November 14, 2019



FEELINGMy parents are coming to Delaware this weekend and we're really excited! Max is eager to play pirates with Papa, and I'm itching to paint the spare guest room with my mom. Priorities, right?? I can't believe it's taken me over 1.5 years to tackle this to-do, but we've had very little need for the space and used it mostly for storing random pieces of furniture, suitcases, etc. Since we got rid of some of the junk and organized the things we wanted to keep, I think we're finally ready to get the job done. The walls are currently a pale yellow (painted by the previous owners), and we're going to switch it to something neutral instead. With Winter coming and more time spent indoors, I think we're going to utilize the space as a playroom for Max. It will be nice to nest in another area!   

THINKING ABOUT: I brought chocolate chip cookies to Max's preschool program a few weeks ago. I used THE recipe and one of his teachers FLIPPED out. Like, her reaction was embarrassing for this introvert! To make matters worse, she's still talking about them. In fact, she's even asked me to bake her a couple dozen to take to Thanksgiving. Haha! While she offered to pay me, my baking is always pro bono. Let's face it, I'm not opposed to sucking up in the name of sweets. Hey, maybe the next time Max lives up to his wild things side in class, she'll cut him some slack? That would greatly benefit his mom in the event my child gets turnt—kind of like that Friday in September when a certain somebody got in trouble for talking too much in class. Oops! We'll call this one a kindness kickback.

THANKFUL FOR: Max's preschool program at the YMCA is every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for two hours in the morning. Well, they recently started offering a "Lunch Bunch" option on Mondays in which the kids can stay until 2 pm, eat lunch with their teacher and play games in the gym. Obviously, I was pretty jazzed about the idea of getting more time alone, so I signed Max up ASAP. Because he was sick last week, this was his first week joining the pre-k crew and he had the BEST time. He's obsessed with his teacher and wishes they could have Lunch Bunch every day. Haha! I've got to admit, the feeling is mutual. I've never looked forward to Mondays so much in my life.   

WATCHING: Speaking of Lunch Bunch, Beesly was beyond confused when I returned home Monday sans Max. She kept sitting by the dining room table waiting for him to enter through the garage door or porch side—as he does most days after checking on his playhouse in the back yard. I kept inviting her into the office to lay beside my desk, but it took a good 30 minutes of convincing before she left the kitchen. For the past five years, I've always had Max by my side and it's clear our darling Berner has gotten used to it. Oh, but just wait until she finds out about kindergarten. Woof! Don't worry Sweet Bee, you'll learn to love your newfound freedom—from what I've been told. Hehe!

READING: Are you familiar with the children's book, The Good Egg by Jory John? Well, my mom bought a copy for me, and I didn't think much of it until I went to read it to Max one night. You could say that a lightbulb went off (AH-HA!) and her message was received. It had me smiling and laughing; I even got choked up. I had no clue that a book about an egg could resonate with me on so many levels. Should I go on a camping trip? Is this why my hair is thinning?

EATING: On Tuesday it was gloomy and cold outside so I decided to whip up a batch of chicken noodle soup. I've yet to find THE recipe (I'm talking about something chocolate chip cookie level!), so I just kind of winged it. The result was tasty enough, which is good because I'll probably be eating leftovers for the next week. Instead of egg noodles, I threw some orzo in the mix and boy did those suckers expand! Yowzah!! Most of the liquid has been absorbed at this point and I'm working with a hearty chicken pasta fusion. Definitely not THE recipe, but better than the stuff in a can.

: Slowly but surely Max is warming up to the idea of having a cousin. Haha! Just recently he began sharing with me different things he wants to teach "that baby." Monday morning our conversation went something like this...

"So you know when that baby comes to my house someday?"
"You mean, your baby cousin?"
"Yeah. That baby. Well, I'm going to have to teach it about momentum. You think that will be good? That baby will definitely need to learn about momentum. Maybe even gravity. I'm really going to have to teach that baby a lot." 

Let's hope for the sake of "that baby" his lesson is strictly words and examples. No physical force required. Yikes!

LOVING: I follow celebrity hairstylist Ashley Streicher (Striiike and Streicher Sisters ring a bell?) on Instagram, and I'm convinced she couldn't be more adorable if she tried. Seriously you guys, her hair is #goals! I haven't had the urge to chop my mop or lighten my locks in a long time, but Ashley's textured tresses make me think otherwise. Swoon! She's the epitome of effortlessly cool, and she nails an orangey-red lip like no other. Sigh. Can we be friends already? How about an honorary sister? Perhaps a fly on the wall when she's zhooshing Mandy Moore? 

How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!! 

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Wednesday, November 13, 2019


Every once in awhile, I'll get asked about the makeup I use when I show my face on Instagram Stories. While I'm initially flattered, I can't help but feel self-conscious as well. It's probably just the filter I'm using, right?! I mean, I struggled with acne for most of high school and college (Hello, Accutane!) and I still get random bouts of hormonal acne in my 30s. My complexion is far from perfect and I'm always on the hunt for serums and creams to aid in the aging process; however, I do have a handful of makeup favorites that I've used devoutly for the past few years. In fact, approximately 80% of the items featured in today's post have been repurchased multiple times—with the exception of the bronzer, cheek palette, and mascara, which were recent beauty finds I stumbled upon this year.  

I don't claim to be a beauty blogger or makeup expert, and while I know there are countless posts just like this on the Interwebs, I get asked this question enough that I decided to create a post with all of my tried and true favorites. In a world where everyone is searching for the next "holy grail" product, these ones top my list.

Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder for Under Eyes —I never want to run out of this!
NARS Soft Matte Complete Concealer —Doubles as eyeshadow primer!
Physician's Formula Butter Bronzer—Just as good as Bobbi Brown, NARS, Chanel, etc.
Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask—Use every night to keep lips from drying.
If there's a special occasion, I'll be sure to use a primer; however, I typically just moisturize with this lotion first.

What about you? Have you used any of these? What's your favorite makeup product?

P.S. If you have any specific questions regarding today's post, ask away in the comments section and I'll be sure to get back to you. I'm happy to give feedback about shades, formulas, etc. I've tried LOTS of different brands over the years.

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Friday, November 8, 2019


Let's get right to it, shall we?
Here's what made me feel all twitterpated, smile contagiously, giggle uncontrollably, etc.

Have a fabulous weekend, m' dears! Make it count.
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Thursday, November 7, 2019



FEELING: In a week Max and I have dental appointments. We're talking about the REAL kind, where you don't just get to go in for a simple cleaning. Instead, there's the x-rays and exams, which really means our chances of learning about more cavities is imminent. In the past, I've always made Flyboy go with us, but it didn't seem to work out this year. Let's hope Max breaks his streak of bad dental luck (to me, that's totally a thing!) in 2019. I'm especially interested to see what the doc has to say about the two loose teeth he's sporting on the bottom front. Do kids begin losing teeth at age five? If so, it looks like somebody is going to have to add this rite of passage to his ongoing list of achievements.

THINKING ABOUT: I don't want to turn on Zooey Deschanel because you know I adore her; however, I'm a bit concerned. Not only is she dating one of the Property Brothers (erm...), but she's also the new face of CROCS. How? Why? This is one of those collaborations that I just can't seem to get on board with. Stick with the Peter Pan collars, a-line skirts, and epic bangs. Please don't try to sell plastic clogs to me. I can't go for that. No can do.

THANKFUL FOR: Yesterday we found out whether I'll be having a niece or nephew. Eek! Obviously, I'm super excited to tell you guys, but I'm going to wait for my sister to give me the green light before I share the big reveal with you. Sorry, that was rotten of me! Thankfully, the baby is healthy and my sister is doing great at 20 weeks. Woo hoo!

WATCHING: Speaking of pregnancies, everyone on this season of Real Housewives of Atlanta is breeding. Holy smokes! There are SOOOOOO many babies. Lately, my feelings regarding the Bravo franchise has been lukewarm, but if anyone can suck me back in it's the women of Hotlanta (along with the drama-filled Jersey girls)! This season should be no exception. Now, where is Nene? Is she the new Vicki? Why are we seeing so little of the OGs? Dammit, Andy!

READING: Maybe with Flyboy at training, I'll get around to reading an actual book. For now, here's some link love...

This Is Us via The Faux Martha — I felt so seen and heard!
Free Rodney Reed —Consider signing this petition. Gov. Abbott needs to do the right thing.

EATING: I'm pleased to announce that one week after Halloween we've managed to get rid of ALL the candy. I never want to see another Reese's until it's time for Christmas trees and then again when the Easter eggs are available. Also, is it really any wonder why I'm stressed about visiting the dentist? It's not rocket science, but in my defense, Flyboy eats the SAME stuff, doesn't even floss and has never ONCE had a cavity. I don't sound bitter at all, do I?

: I can count on one hand how many times I've described my child as delightful. I promise I'm not being dramatic here. Sure we have some really fun moments together where he can be super sweet and I truly adore being his mom, but whenever my mother asks me how Max has been lately and I actually use the d-word, you can bet within 24 hours he will come down with something. After five years of motherhood, you would think I would learn, but on Saturday I went on to my mom about how great Max's behavior was that day and perhaps our dear child was turning a corner. WRONG! He was just sick. The nice part about Maxwell on the mend is that he oozes with kindness and cuddles, so keeping him home from school on Monday didn't seem like a terrible idea until he realized he didn't get to see his friends and teachers and revolted against me all day long. Haha! I swear you can't win with this child. At one point I found him pouting in a corner and asked him what was going on. He responded earnestly, "I'm just so mad at you for making me stay home when today is Lunch Bunch Monday!!!" Wasn't it just two months ago when he was bawling because he didn't want to go to school? 
Good grief! Sorry I didn't want to get everyone at the YMCA sick. 

LOVING: I've been itching to try some of the Olive & June products (namely the nail polish) for a while now, but the shades are so subdued I kept holding out for my kind of punchy red before placing an order. Everyone raves about the quality (supposedly long-lasting) and the fact that it's 7-free, so when the company launched a series of holiday hues last week, I gave their site a look and was ecstatic to see the prettiest red named after THE Clare Vivier. I almost fell out of my seat. I've been waiting for this day and the company delivered!! I can't wait to give some of their goods a go and report back. I plan on testing CV, in addition to their top coat, the beloved Poppy, and their cuticle serum.  

How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!! 

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Wednesday, November 6, 2019



Happy Wednesday, m' dears! So much has happened since my last LLD post. Let's get straight to the details...
  • The Marine Corps Marathon was memorable for a variety of reasons. Max ran in his first one-miler with 3,000 other kids around the Pentagon parking lot. Despite this being his idea, he got cold feet before making his way to the starting line. Thankfully, Flyboy and his bestie were able to give our little runner bean the pep talk he needed. Maxwell started out with a nervous shuffle and tears in his eyes, but he eventually found his stride and ended up passing a lot of the kids that started before he did. When it was all said and done, he was pretty stinking proud of his achievement! As far as the five-year-old is concerned, he ran a marathon two weekends ago. For the two guys who actually ran a full 26.2 miles on October 27th, it wasn't quite as easy, but they did the damn thing—even if it meant running for several hours in a downpour all over downtown Washington D.C. Despite the crazy rains, my mom and I made it a point to cheer on the guys. It was the least we could do, and I'll never forget the energy of the crowd, the persistence painted on the face of each runner, the pride of family members watching their loved ones pass by, or the way the sun finally came out as Flyboy and his BFF made their way to the finish line at Arlington. I still don't understand WHY anyone would want to run this kind of distance for that much time, but I imagine the feeling of accomplishment when you've completed a marathon is indescribable because the emotions that came over me as a wife and friend are a high unlike any other. Congratulations boys!
  • One month into turning five and Max LOVES to share all the things he's done so far. The list includes "running a marathon," upgrading to a booster seat, his first school program, catching his first fish (a Crappie from a nearby lake), and dressing up as a Venus Fly Trap for Halloween with mom and dad as his flies. I hope I haven't forgotten anything. Anywho, he likes to revisit his ongoing list of accomplishments on a daily basis. I can't say I blame him; he's done more in four weeks than I have in years.
  • Parenthood is fun because you're constantly finding ways to reinvent the wheel. Since Max will probably always be strong-willed, we're continuously looking for new approaches to get through to him. Since he's all about his dad and planes, I decided to adopt the saying "Max, Relax, Roll" —as it's used primarily during pilot training for stall recovery in the aircraft. Obviously it takes on an additional (and catchy!) significance for Maxwell, so I had Flyboy explain what it means to our inquisitive kid hoping the reminder might help him whenever he's being stubborn. Hey, it was worth a shot! Stubborn recovery, anyone?
  • Where did October go? Flyboy is getting ready to leave again for several weeks. Sigh. While helping him get all of his gear together, I realized that we will have spent almost eight months apart this year. Is it really any wonder Max has had a difficult time with all the change happening? Heck, it's hard enough for adults. On the bright side, we've got a lot of exciting things to look forward to and since this time of year seems to pass by quickly, I imagine he'll be done with training in a snap and we'll be celebrating the holidays together in no time. A wise Morgan Harper Nichols once said, "Take heart, breathe deep. Let November be November. And when the sun sets, remember: you are free to just be."

 Alright, enough about me. How the heck are YOU? I'm dying to know.


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