beauty + lifestyle + parenting

september birchbox

Can anyone else believe that it's the last day of September? Yeah, me neither! It just feels like this month flew by way too quickly! I mean, the hubby and I celebrated our five year wedding anniversary, our Lil Man turned four, I tried a no spend month, and I got my box from Birchbox this month!

For those of you who don't know what Birchbox is, it's a monthly subscription service that sends you a box with 4-5 deluxe samples and 1 full size product every month according to the beauty profile that you fill out. You basically receive beauty products (which includes hair and makeup) and one lifestyle item for $10 a month. You can cancel at any time, and it's a pretty nice "try before you buy" service, as no box is ever the same. They also offer free shipping deals all the time, and for every item you review from your box, on the Birchbox site, you receive 10 points. Oh, and every 100 points equal $10. If you would like to sign up, you can do that here

September marks my 7th month of being a Birchbox subscriber, and when I first opened my box, I was seriously disappointed. 

A few months ago, Birchbox started a program to let subscribers pick one of their samples. Yes, the other samples are still totally random, but you are now able to pick one of four. They usually do sneak peek videos in the week following up to the e-mail, so you can have a pretty good idea of what you want to get. *You don't have to choose- it's just an option.

For September, I choose to get the Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate. Being a relatively new product, I had seen a bunch of advertisements for it, and well, me being me, I had to try a product that sold for sixty-five bucks.








At first glance, I was severely disappointed. I mean, compared to other months, I really felt like I had been jiped. Until I started to figure out how much each sample was actually worth...

According to my calculations, the whole box came out to be worth over forty-five dollars. Yes, I just said forty-five. As in American printed, accepted everywhere, dollar bills. And I had only paid ten bucks for the box. 

First up was my lil bottle of Shiseido's power house, the Ultimune Power Indusing Concentrate, which was worth twenty-one and some change. A full bottle is selling for sixty-five, and the sample was a third of the size. This stuff was amazing, and still is. I use it every morning, after washing my face of course, and I can tell a difference. My face is smoother, and I haven't noticed any breakouts. I am the type of gal who gets those dreaded hormonal breakouts about the time of Mother Nature's gift, and there was nothing on my face this month. Nothing!!!

The perfume smelt rather nice- it was a bit strong at first, but once I got used to it, I really like it. It was worth a little over two bucks. And the full size sells for one-twenty. As in one hundred and twenty. To me, it's not worth the price. Great name though.

I was on the fence about the highlighter. I am a powder highlighter & bronzer type of gal, so the liquid form sorta threw me off. It did however, give a nice luminizing effect to my face. The sample was worth just under three bucks.

I did not, and I state again, did not like the hand cream. It was a green tea and lemon scent, and I hate lemon scents. Especially strong lemon scents. I will definitely be handing it off to someone who would show it some love, partly due to the fact that it was worth five bucks.

I haven't tried the eyeliner, but I'm fairly sure that it's the full size. I have read a bunch of great reviews on it, and plan to try it in the future, but right now, I just haven't had the need to try out a black eyeliner- I usually wear nude or taupe.

Yeah, so this month's box gave me some mixed feelings. I am glad that I got my money's worth, and probably would have paid the ten bucks solely for the Shiseido product. Other than that, I wan't impressed with the other products.

I am in love with Birchbox still though. They have amazing customer service, shipping is super fast, they run giveaways all the time, and right now, if you sign up for a subscription, they are offering to give you ten bucks to spend in the shop. You can sign up here. Or if you leave your e-mail, or just a comment, I will send you the secret code :)

*I was in no way compensate for this review, as Birchbox really has no idea who I am. 

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four years ago...

Four years ago a life was changed. For the better.
A little child was cut out of of swollen body after being over-baked by five days and over 36 hours of grueling labor.
A single cry brought tears to a set of eyes.
The evicted inhabitant grabbed onto a finger. The single greatest moment of a mother's life was captured.
Two parents were grateful.

A story has been read to the evicted inhabitant every night since.


"On the night you were born, the moon smiled with such wonder that the stars peeking in
 to see you and the night wind whispered, "Life will never be the same." 

Because there had been anyone life you... ever in the world."


"So enchanted with you were the wind and the rain that the whispered the sound of your wonderful name.

The sound of your name is a magical one. Let's say it out loud before we go on."



"It sailed through the farmland high on the breeze...

Over the ocean...

And through the trees..."


"Until everyone heard it and everyone knew of the one and only ever you."


"Not once had there been such eyes, such a nose, such silly, wiggly, wonderful toes.

In fact, I think I'll count to three so you wiggle your toes for me."


"When the polar bears heard, they danced until dawn.

From faraway places, the geese flew home.

The moon stayed up until morning the next day.

And none of the lady bugs flew away."


"So whenever you doubt just how special you are and you wonder who loves you, how much and how far, listen for geese honking high in the sky.
(They're singing a song to remember you by)"


"Or notice the bears asleep at the zoo.
(It's because they've been dancing all night for you.)"


"Or drift off to sleep to the sound of the wind.
(Listen closely... is whispering your name again!)"


"IF the moon stays up until morning one day or a ladybug lands and decides to stay,
or a little bird sits at your window awhile,
it's because they're all hoping to see you smile."


"For never before in story or rhyme
(not even once upon a time)
has the world ever known a you, my friend,
and it never will, not ever again..."


"Heaven blew every trumpet
and played every horn
one the wonderful, marvelous
night you were born."


"You are loved."

Happy 4th birthday over-baked inhabitant.


Story by Nancy Tillman
Linking up with Ember Grey

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things i've learned about parenting (& blogger favorites)

I have been a parent for the past four years, and honestly I can tell you that it is the most crazy, beautiful job in the world. Sure, I get stressed and burnt out, but in the end it's all worth it. And today I am going to share with you...


 one || It's not easy
When you are a childless individual, you look around at women with children, and suddenly you want a baby. We all do it. Hell, I even did it. You think that a baby will make your life better and make it worth something. Yes, those things are true (even more than I care to let on), but what you don't realize is that everything that comes after that pregnancy, is so hard. Even though people have told you. A baby only stays a baby for a little bit, and then after about a year or so, you have a walking, talking, toddler who gets into EVERYTHING on your hands. And it's hard to remain the sane person that you once were. Its hard to remain calm, cool, and collective when you have a three year old screaming for fruit snacks in the middle of Target. But you can do it. It's not easy to hear that your child needs medication for an illness. It's not easy to know you child is in pain, but not be able to do anything for them. It's not easy to leave your child in daycare for eight hours, while you go work to provide for them. I could go on and on, but the point is: parenting is not the easiest job in the world, but it's a job worth doing.

two || Parenting is stressful, and that's ok.
Change is always stressful, so you can imagine the stress of having a child. It's alot. Children have a tendency to find your buttons, and continuously push them. It's just what children do. But it's ok. This type of button pushing helps your child figure out his limits (how much can I push Mom before she yells and puts me in time-out), and you to figure out alternative discipline measures. Bottom line is that children need alot of attention and with five million and one other things needing to be done, it can be a tad bit stressful. And that brings me to number 3.

three || Housework and other duties can wait.
So what if you haven't had a shower in three days, the sink is full of dishes, the garbage needs to be taken out, blog post need to be written, etc.... they all can wait. Sure you aren't being a neglectful parent by doing these things, and setting you child in front of the TV, but screaming at them because they aren't being quiet and doing what they are told, so you can clean the house, is not fair to the child. Once in awhile it's ok to let the house go, and just be with your child. Forget about all the things and build a train track, do a puzzle, role play with the action figures... just do it.

four || Perfection is not attainable. 
So many parents try to be the "perfect parent", and I have news for them... perfection in nowhere near attainable. But as long as you are giving a hundred and ten percent to your parenting duties, then you are the best parent in the world. Children don't care about their expensive label clothes (well until they get to be teens), the fact that the toy set you just got was from a garage sale, that Mom is wearing the most expensive makeup or her blowout cost over a hundred bucks... they care that you just took time out of your busy day and read them a book or sat down with them to line up and count cars. In the end, it doesn't matter how much you screw up, because in the eye's of your child, you're the best mom in their world.

five || It's the small things.
The small things make the whole parenting things worth it. It's the hugs just because, the sound of their voice saying your name, the smiles, the small things.

~~~~~

Yes, I love being a parent. But I also love reading blogs, so I am also going to share my favorite posts from the week!

Welcoming Fall with an Adult Apple Cider by Love the Here and Now. OMG! Anne's alcoholic apple cider looks amazing AND I love the fact she says that she just eyeballed the measurements. 

Sh*t not to say to a blogger by Whispering Sweet Nothings. Shane seriously read my mind with this post. 

How to: Thank you notes & a giveaway by Oat and Oats. I love this, especially because I am always writing personalized thank you notes with each order from the Etsy Shop

Irrationally Angry by Helene in Between. Seriously read this post. Helene's face is hilarious. 

Your Experience Is Not My Experience by The Life of Bon. Um... yeah... LOVE. 



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dear lil man

Four years ago, today, September 24, I was supposed to give birth to a bouncing baby boy. He didn't arrive till five days later (but we will talk about that another day). Anyways, my son will be four in a couple of days, and today I wanted to share a letter that I have written for him. My goal is to write a letter to him on each birthday, and then give him all of the letters on his 18th birthday.
~

Dear Lil Man,

The past four years of your life have forever changed mine. For the better. From the first time I felt you kick, I had the mind set that I would do anything for you. And when I saw your little squishy face, I swore it to myself.

Even though in your four year old state of mind, you tend to piss me off (which you know you do), because apparently you know how to push my buttons, I swear I still love you. And everything that you are. Because you are a part of me. And I will always love you.

Because we are coming upon your fourth birthday, I want to share four wishes with you.

My wish for you is that this life is everything that you want it to be. Opportunity is out there, and I want you to strive to be better than the normal. To strive for greatness. Perfection is unattainable, but greatness is at your fingertips, my son. You have gifts, and at the risk of sounding cliché, be all that you can be and give everything your a hundred and ten percent.

My wish for you is that you never know pain. Physical pain goes away within time, but I hope that you never experience the pain of losing someone close to you or feel that you are alone in all of this. Daddy and I will always be here for you, and when there comes a time when we are not, we will always be in your heart.

My wish for you is that you always be brave. People aren't always nice, but I expect you to always polite. If anyone is ever mean to you, stand tall and be the better person. If there is ever a time that you are scared, be brave my son.

My wish for you is that you always know love and feel loved. There are so many people in this world that love you, and there is no reason that you should ever feel alone or unloved.

You and me against the world, boo.
I love you.
Love, Mommy

~

*Linking up with Anne for Wednesday Wishes, Shanna for Random Wednesday, Liz for the blog hop, and Kathy for confessions.

why i don't read your blog

When it comes to reading blogs, I've gotten a bit picky. Sure, everyone deserves a voice and I love it when someone is real and honest, but if your design really hurts my eyes, then why should I read what you have to say. It's almost like you don't want to come off as being professional. 

A design, is the number one reason I really don't follow a blog, or read anything they have to say. A design is a blog's foundation. You see, I had a blog designer lay some foundation html for me, but the current design is now 100% mine. I made my headers, invested in some white space, played with Photoshop, read through what seemed like a bazillion tutorials, and now the design is about 90% finished (I've already hashed out what I need to add, so I won't go back over this). But my design is readable, and doesn't hurt anyone's eyes (I hope).

But I'm getting ahead of myself.


**Please note that what follows is not meant to be mean, but to be constructive criticism. The good kind.**

one || design
Please, for the sake of all that's beautiful in the world, either hire a blog designer or invest in some WHITE SPACE. White space is your friend. This is not Myspace, this is a blog, and if I a)can't read your blog because it hurts my eyes, b)can't find an "about me" page/area, or c)find your "follow me" buttons, then I WILL NOT read what you have to say. There are so many tutorials out there to help with blog design, or your could read my post here, where I post some helpful blogging/design links.

two || no profile picture
Yes, this goes along with number one, but if you don't have a picture and only have that stupid Google Plus profile thing, I tend to get annoyed. You seem to put so much work into your blog, so at least try to make it look professional. And show me who is writing the thing.

three || content & no originality
Sure, sometimes even my own content can be bland and not exactly planned out (occasionally I write on a whim, it happens), but if your content is inconsistent, all sponsored posts, reviews, giveaways, or you come off as been conceded, then you guessed it. The best advice I was given when I started blogging was to be real, be myself. If your blog is consistently a list of things, a knock off of another's post (this happens a lot with link ups), or you steal someone's shit, then you better believe I will certainly not be following you. Sure, a list is fine here and there, but not five in a row, every week. Look for a blog everyday in {insert month} to give you some ideas. Also, I love it when the writer makes me laugh, educates me (in a fun way), or is just plain real.

four || your picture quality
You don't have to have a dslr camera to take great pictures, but you do need to try to have a good backdrop. Unless I'm taking outfit pictures, I usually use my cell phone (which takes amazing pictures, imo). But if you take the time to add pictures to your blog, please make them large (and in charge) and not blurry.

five || you don't respond to my comments
In the beginning, I would reply to commenters on my comment form, but then someone told me a secret- unless someone returns to read the comments, they won't see your reply. Makes sense. So the best way to reply to a commenter? E-mail. You should receive a notification of comments in your e-mail, so just reply to that e-mail, in a timely manner. Well, unless that person commenting is a no-reply blogger, but we won't go there today.


These five are only a handful of the reasons that I will not be following your blog, and I know I'm not alone in this. Being a blogger means being original and being you. Linkups are fun, because they get your name out there, and help people follow you, but having original thoughts and a clean blog design that doesn't hurt anyone's eyes is the best piece of advice you will ever here.

Like I said, my reasons are not mean to be mean, rather to complain about what I've been seeing lately. And if I hurt someone's feelings, then I'm really sorry.

What are some of the reasons that you won't follow a blog?  photo new-signature-222_zpsf1512a7d.png
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beauty review | perfectly posh

A few weeks ago, I answered a call for reviewers. The product to be reviewed: Perfectly Posh. I had no idea who the company was, only that they sold pampering products, or which products I would be sent. 

Once I received my package, I was so surprised and instantly fell inlove! 


Perfectly Posh is a about pampering, and giving women a chance to experience that pampering with products that are USA made, have natural ingredients, free from sulfates, parabens, lanolin, & phthalates, loaded with essential oils, and are cruelty free (no animal testing here folks). They feature amazing products which include bath scrubs, lotions, lip butters, face masks, perfume sticks, powder, shave creme, hair care products... basically everything you would need to pamper yourself, all at an affordable price. All products are sold through an independent consultant, so they can work with you and give you a one-on-one shopping session.


My thoughts: 

I love me some charcoal cleanser (I use a charcoal face wash everyday), because of the natural ingredients and non-drying attribute. This bath bar was amazing. Usually when I walk out of the shower, my skin either feels rather silky or tight and dry. Not after using this! It seemed to find that middle road with my skin, and made me feel clean without the "after" feeling of NEEDING to moisturize. When payday comes around, a full size will be mine. 

Like the product title says, the Shine Bright Like a Diamond is an exfoliater, and I loved it. It is now in my top five favorites because this is a gentle, yet powerful little scrub, and did not irritate my face. Most exfoliators tend to make my face red, and a bit sensitive for a while, but this guy made my skin feel baby soft, and wonderful. I definitely will be buying this in the near future. 

I am a sucker for a good mask, and this one was AMAZING. Basically you get a powder, and then you can make up your own mask by using the recipes in the brochure or website. I really wanted to mix mine with avocado, but since I didn't have it on hand- I used honey. The results: hydration all around for my face, and no need to exfoliate for four days. Yes, my face was that soft. Love this stuff.

This bar smelled so pretty. It was also an amazing body exfoliator, but unfortunately it seemed a bit harsh on my sensitive skin. 

This scrub had a very nice/clean scent, and it invigorated my shower. 

Overall, I really liked what I tried from Perfectly Posh, and will be buying a few products. If you would like to try or buy some wonderful pampering products, you can contact my girl Crystal. You can shop on her site, check out her facebook, follow her on twitter, or look at her daily life on insta.

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five things i love about fall & blogger favorites

Like I've said before, Fall is my absolute FAVORITE season. Sure, you would have seen that due to three out of four posts this week being about that wonderful season. But why, you ask, do I love Fall? Well, let me tell you.


one || the colder, but not freezing, weather
I am an extremely self conscious individual that doesn't fell comfortable in her own skin. Summer sucks because of this- because either I suck it up and show so skin to stay cool, or suffer and sweat to death. And then Fall comes in, and allows me to cover my legs with my loveable jeans, arms with tissue thin shirts, and feet with fuzzy socks. Also, I get to bring out my bazillion scarves, and wear the crap out of them. 

two || the smells
For some odd reason, burning a pumpkin smelling candle in the Spring or Summer just isn't the same as in the Fall. And I'm not even sure if it's socially acceptable. Unfortunately though, my sinus seem to go haywire, and make me all stuffed up for the first good month.
three || the activities
Fall has so many wonderful activities. It's not blistering hot or hypothermia cold, so Fall is the best time to get out and enjoy the beautifulness that it has to offer. Pumpkin patches, corn mazes, apple picking, pumpkin carving, hay rides, trick r treating, leaf pile jumping, oh my! And it's a great time for camping, because the sketters decide to hibernate or just plain die (most of the time).

four || the array of flavors
Blame Starbucks all you want for making pumpkin the flavor of the season, but they had a good idea. Fall means pumpkin everything, apple pie yumminess, possibly s'mores, and more.

five || the colors
Don't you just love fall colors? They are BEAUTIFUL. Enough said.

Now that you know the five things I love about Fall, how about I share some blogger love? Here are my favorite posts from the week:

I love the way Anne breaks down the whole offering sponsorships thing. I mean, choosing to actually offer paid advertising on your blog is a big deal around the blogosphere. Sure, you can earn money, which can be put into advertising your own blog, but it's alot of WORK. 

About Me & My Blog by Miss in the Midwest
Every now and then, I love a good introduction post. Sometimes, the 'About Me' page is rather vague, and I like to identify with the blogger. Who are you? Why should I read your words? Thank you Karlyn, now I know, and I love this post!

Why I won't follow you by Lot 48
I have been planning to do a whole post on this, but Lauren definitely hit almost every annoyance on the head.

I've Adopted. I've Shopped. And now I see the difference. by The Florkens
I love how Kate and Adam keep it real, and this post actually had me in tears. I am a sucker for a "light at the end of the tunnel" shelter pet story, and Kate should have an award sitting on her mantel for her work. Yes, read it. 

**Linking up with: Lauren Elizabeth | September Farm & The Farmer's Wife The Diary of a Real Housewife | All the Joys | Meet @ the Barre | Love Letters & Lists by The Observant Turtle

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Boom clap, the sound of my heart

A year ago I decided to start putting my thoughts into words and typing them onto the blogger platform. I had no idea what I was doing, and I really didn't think I would come as far as I have in the past year.

I mean, I started out with the frame of mind that I didn't care who read my words. I didn't even advertise the fact that I even had one, let alone identified myself as a blogger. I was a writer. And I still am. Just a writer that has written over 250 blog posts, who's words have had over 40,000 total views and almost 600 readers (GFC & Bloglovin), and who's 140 charters or less quips of daily life reach over 1,300 twitter, insta, & facebook followers.

Wowza!!!

My very first de-virginizing post was my 30 by 30 list, so I find it only reasonable to rehash that list, and find out where I am a year later, right? Right. 

Like I said, my first post when I started this little piece of the blogosphere, was detailing my thirty by thirty list. I made it a couple of months before I turned 28, and truthfully, I don't know where exactly my head was at when I made it. In the year after making it, I have realized that I had actually only completed four of the nine things that were checked off, and I actually never finished the damn list in the first place. Sure, this type of list should be one of those ones that you make on the eve of your 20th birthday, but we all know that 30 is the farthest thing from your mind at that point.

Anyways, the list (redone and finished)...

My list
(the ones I have completed are highlighted with a date after):

1) Experience love at first sight. (completed September 2010 when my son was born)

2) Marry someone that I am deeply in love with. (completed September 2009)

3) Swim in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Caribbean Oceans.

4) Take a cruise. I did this in high school and have no idea why it's on this list.

4) Take my son on a boat ride.

5) Finish a novel (publishing not required).

6) Go to New Orleans. (completed March 2012)

7) Find a happy weight. This is bs, I will always be self conscious, but it's not always about weight.

7) Meet a celebrity. (Completed September 2010)

8) Find a job that pays well, and that I love.

9) Have a baby! (completed September 29... His name is Gavin)

10) Read and finish book. (completed 2013.. Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy... what can I say)

11) Go to a Chicago Cubs game, Chicago Bears, and a Chicago Blackhawks game.

12) Meet a moose at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Columbus, OH.

13) Play with a Penguin in Gatlinburg, TN.

14) Go to Las Vegas and see at least one show. (completed September 2009)

15) Get another tattoo.

16) Go to Niagara Falls.

17) Take a trip to Washington DC, and visit all of the monuments and museums.

18) Obtain a passport and take a trip to Canada.

19) Go apple picking in Michigan.

20) To have a blog following of 50 within the first 6 months. (completed February 2014)

21) To buy a house.

22) Paint with a penguin.

23) Learn to love running. Never going to happen!

23) Own a DSLR camera and know how to use it.

24) Get my graduate degree. (completed May 2014) 

25 ) Ride an elephant. (completed May 2014)

26) See Garth Brooks in concert. (completed September 2014)

27) Celebrate five years of being married with the man I love. (completed September 2014)

28) Ride a four wheeler.

29) Meet at least one blogger friend. (competed July 2014)

30) Break my addiction to cigarettes. 

To this date, I have completed 13 of my thirty by thirty list, and by the end of the year, I hope to accomplish at least four more! But to thank you all for being on this journey with me, I want to give you a chance to win a big ole' beauty bundle!


The contents include: two face masks, Tarte self tanner mini, Toni & Guy heat protect mist, Benefit Watt's Up mini, nail polish, W3LL People black eyeliner, Olay BB in light/medium, Maybelline Baby Skin, Simple moisturizer, toe separators, pink statement necklace, coral scarf, and a magical wine glass from my Etsy Shop (in your choice of color of course)!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms & Conditions:
-The giveaway is only open to US residents
. I'm sorry international friends, but I really don't think customs would allow me to send you everything pictured.
-Total value of the prize is less than $100.
-There will be only one winner.
-Once selected, winner will be contacted, and then have 48 hours to respond. If winner does not respond, another winner will be selected.


Good luck friends! And thank you again!!!
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**Linking up with The Grits Blog and Treasure Tromp**

fall bucket list

Bucket lists are all the rage nowadays. It's crazy... I mean, the whole idea of a bucket list, is actually kinda morbid- complete a list of things before I die. Of course I'm just being a hypocrite, because you and I both know I have one. Ha! 

So a derivative of the whole bucket list idea, is the seasonal bucket list. Basically it's just a list of things one would like to accomplish by the end of that particular season, even it they tend to blend together. I, along with every one else, made one for Summer, and now, of course, there is one for Fall. Maybe even winter will be in the mix? But my reason for making a fall bucket list? The hubby's upcoming surgery and the fact that I LOVE LOVE LOVE Fall!


Enjoy at least three pumpkin spice latte's from Starbucks
Pumpkin pie blizzard
Trick r Treat
Bonfire with S'mores
Drink apple cider
Jump in a leaf pile
Visit the apple orchard
Visit a pumpkin patch
Decorate a pumpkin (either painting or carving is acceptable)
Fall photo shoot
Complete at least one Halloween craft
Make a leaf imprint with Lil Man
Go on a hay ride
Watch a Halloween movie
Go to a haunted house
Go to the zoo
Attend a fall festival
Make & enjoy caramel apples
Learn how to make a new festive desert
Take a walk and enjoy some nature


What's on your Fall bucket list?
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*Linking up with Anne for Wednesday Wishes, Shanna for Random Wednesday, Liz for the blog hop, and Kathy for confessions.

my wonderful guide to fall tv

When it comes to TV, Fall happens to be my FAVORITE season. Sure, Summer shows are amazing, but there is just something about a good Fall show. Maybe it's because the run time is like eight months instead of three? 

So what will I be watching this Fall season?



Favorite returning shows:

Sons of Anarchy 
FX | September 9
Ok, I know this premier has already come and gone, but DAMN!

The Blacklist
NBC | September 22
Hands down, one of my FAVORITE new shows from last year! It just keeps you guessing and the number one question: is Red Elizabeth's father or not?

Chicago Fire
NBC | September 23
Hello hot suff! MMM... the man candy in Chicago Fire is off the chain! But what happened to Firehouse 57? They ALL went into a building, and it blew up. Is anyone alive? I personally would assume so, especially because I've seen some behind-the-scenes pictures on Insta. All I got to say: they better be alive, because I really want to know if Dawson said yes or no.

Chicago PD 
NBC | September 24
Another beautiful creation by Mr. Dick Wolf, last season Chicago PD left us wondering: who done it? As in, who killed Jin: Stillwell or Voight? Personally, I think it was Stillwell, but it's anyone's guess. One things for sure: expect some crossovers between Chicago Fire, Chicago PD, AND Law & Order: SVU.

Law & Order: SVU 
NBC | September 24
What is this, the fourteenth or fifteenth season? I'm not sure, but I am sure that I would like someone to bring sexy Stabler back... Am I right ladies? Anyways, I have no idea where this season is going to go, especially since last season, Benson spent some time with, and then killed her psychopath abuser. Honestly, was there even an "OMG" moment at the end? I don't know, because the season wasn't memorable. In the end, I watch, because you can watch an episode, then miss 3, and come back knowing exactly what's going on.

Awkward
MTV | September 23
Yes, I am one of those people who watch MTV for the shows (don't judge- if they had music, I'd watch that), and Awkward is my number one go to! The 30 minutes weekly peeks into Jenna Hamilton's life amuses the shit out of me. And what to expect this season? Is Eva's baby really Matty's? And will Jenna ever find happiness?

Grey's Anatomy 
ABC | September 25
It pains me to say this, but I really think Grey's is going to be coming to a close within the next year. But, where did we leave off? Oh yeah, Christina lost the Harper Avery, but now has a hospital to herself, Jackson and Kepner are expecting a baby, and Richard finds out that he fathered a child with Ellis, aka Meredith's mom.

Scandal
ABC | September 25
It's no secret that I love me some scandal, and I will quite possibly watch this premier on live tv (most of my stuff is DVR'd until I have the time). Why? Well because Fitz was going crazy, Olivia had elected to say "screw Fitz" (not literally in the case), and fly off into the sunset with Jake. Where did she go? No one knows, but there is talk of a deserted island.

Once Upon a Time
ABC | September 28
Who ever isn't awaiting the series premier has got to be off their rocker! Why? Well, because the much awaited premier is featuring Elsa, the Queen of Frozen! Oh and Anna! But, it's ELSA people!!!

The Originals
CW | October 6
MMM... another man candy show. I am super excited to see what troubles the gang is going to get into this season!

American Horror Story
FX | October 15
I really didn't care for the last installment of AHS, but "Freak Show" seems to aim to please. Even my husband said that he wouldn't mind watching. But we shall see.

Grimm
NBC |October 24
Will Nick regain his powers?

The Vampire Diaries
CW | October 28
I'm not so sure if I am highly anticipating this one or not. I stopped watching mid-season last season, because the whole Katherine wanting to take over Elena's life was getting old. I guess I will watch the premier and see if I have the "need" to watch it again.

Reign
CW | October 29
Why can't Mary and Francis just be happy?


Anticipated New Shows:

The Mysteries of Laura
NBC | September 17
I have been missing Debra Messing since Will & Grace ran it's course, and I will gladly watch a show where she is a "crack detective with a turbulent" home life.


Madam Secretary
CBS| September 21
I love Tea Leoni, and the previews for Madam Secretary look amazing.


Forever
ABC | September 22
A cute guy who can't die? Well of course, I'm in!


Scorpion
CBS | September 22
A drama about hackers. Sounds interesting.


How to get away with Murder
ABC | September 25
Just the title interests me... well, and the trailer.


Bad Judge
NBC | October 2
He he! Oh Addison, be good for once! 


The Flash
CW | October 7
Sounds interesting... 



State of Affairs
NBC | November 17
I'm a sucker for a good political drama.





What will you be watching this Fall TV season?
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fall wish list


Fall is upon us (at least in my area), so I figured it was time to make a fall clothing wish list.

I am not like most girls, and need a whole new wardrobe for fall or anything like that. I tend to keep my clothes in pretty good condition, and don't really fluctuate in weight; so at the end of the seasons, I usually mend my knits (if it's needed) and put them away in a tote.  

My fall style is quite simple: I am loving the open/flyaway cardigans, open knits, leggings, and flats. Simple, I told ya. Being a stay at home mom, I rely on comfortable clothes that look good, so I can wear them to my part time job. I also look at the "cost per use" of clothing when buying, because who really wants to buy a sweater for like fifty bucks and only wear it once? It's absurd. 

Anyways, my list includes items to update my wardrobe. Those items are (going counterclockwise from the grey sweater):

Claire Scrunch Flat | menswear- $26.99 
Claire Scrunch Flat | nude- $26.99 


What's on your fall wish list?
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**Linking up with Marry Mint**

five thoughts...



one || Fall is definitely here, and I am about two seconds away from bursting out my boots. Winter boots that is. 

two || I have been doing pretty good on the whole "No spend September" thing. I haven't bought anything for myself, and that's really a rarity. Unfortunately, I really think I am going to break down and buy Whitney's new IWYP shirt. Be Strong Girl, Be Strong! 

three || My one year blog anniversary is coming up next week, and I have been thinking about re-branding; aka, changing the name. I don't know if I actually will, I mean this year has been amazing- I have hit over 400 on Bloglovin, Twitter, and Facebook and people actually read what I have to say. That itself is pretty awesome. We'll revisit this later. 

four || I am super happy with the blogs that I chose to sponsor this month. My page views have definitely risen, and the tweets/comments are genuine. Love Love Love to all the sponsorees and thank you! xo

five || Have you seen the new pretties that I put in the Etsy Shop? I am really proud of my painted stem wine glasses, and I know I would love one as a wedding present or housewarming gift. Or even an amazing coffee mug! Oh btw... Did you know that I am running a 25% off sale? Yep! Just use code HELLOFALL25 for 25% off your entire order! 

six || Since I'm not really diving into my week (I just don't feel like it), I am going to give some blogger love... 

~ Read these :) ~

A Parin' o' Fonts by Love the Here and Now & The Grits Blog. I am a sucker for some good fonts (have you seen my Pinterest board), and well, Anne & Ash share some pretty awesome ones. 

Maroon Five: V by Life with a side of coffee. Maroon Five happens to be one of my favorite bands and I love when someone does an album review. 

One Year Ago Today... (& a big giveaway) by Hello Rigby. Like I said, my one year blog anniversary is coming up next week, and I can totally identify with Jenn. I really like her reader survey, and may be hosting my own. 

Refresh by Marry Mint. I've been int he mood for cleaning lately (um... yeah, I just said that) and I love the way Amanda gives some little charts to help out with it all- especially the closet :) 

Creating a Blogging Income by Oak & Oats. Everyone always asks how they can make money from blogging, and Elizabeth gives you the run down- with links. Cha-ching. 


How was your week? Any random thoughts?

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thirteen years...

In all reality, today would be one of those days to share the nostalgic pictures of either the twin towers burning or the emptiness that occupied the space for quite sometime, but what's the point? To remind us of the single most tragic day in US history that filled our hearts with sadness, but rallied the masses to stand up and proudly say "we are America and if you mess with us, well then you better run!" To remind us of the day that so many people lost their lives, and scorned a nation? To remind us of the one time in our history when people were helping people just because. To remind us that even a country can seek revenge.

In truth, in some way, shape or form, we were all affected by that one day in September, thirteen years ago. 

I know I was. 

Thirteen years ago, I was a naive high school sophomore, and my only worry was passing I-STEPS. I was oblivious to the world around me, and quite frankly, I don't think I even cared. I had a boyfriend (who's age I won't mention), and homecoming was coming up. 

All that changed when a TV was turned on. 

I-STEPS were interrupted and the picture shown on TV stopped every teenager in their tracks: a plane flying into a tall building. The horrific video clip was played over and over again. It scared, frightened, and most likely even traumatized the eyes that watched it. 

I could go on and tell you what events followed, but I won't. Why? Because everyone has their story. Their own accounts of where they were, what they did, how they felt; but one thing remains the same: how they can remember it like it was yesterday. 

But it wasn't. It was thirteen years ago. 

And in the wake of all that tragedy, America has gone to war, the government can now detain someone under the "Patriot Act", and so many more have lost their lives. 

September 11 will always be a day that America- and all of the world- remembers for a simple reason. It's the day that we remember our humanity. 
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a purse is a woman's best friend


I love a good Coach purse. I mean who doesn't? Sure they are a bit expensive, but the craftsmanship is amazing, the prints are pretty as anything, and if you keep them in good shape, they keep their value. Buying a Coach purse is really an investment, if you think about it.
But this post isn't about my beautiful IKAT print convertible duffle & crossbody pictured above, it's about what I actually put in it.
What ever the purse I have (I tend to change purses depending on the season- brights for warmer weather, darks for cooler), I always carry the same things. Why? Because my purse is literally my life.
So what does the life of a part-time stay at home mom look like? Crazy, that's what!
So in my purse, I keep:

an assortment of lib/beauty products
bobbie pins & hair ties
gum
Advil
deodorant (you never know...)
Neo-to-go
Tide-to-go
tissues
hand santizer

 
Wet Ones or some type of antibacterial wipes
a play pack for Lil Man
tail mix or a Nice Bar
Colgate Wisps

Not pictured
nail file
blotting tissues
pens
notebook / post-it pad


Last, but not least, I keep my beautiful pink Coach wallet- which includes cash money, plastic that I really don't need due to the high percentage rates, but can't seem to get rid of because I have an addiction to shopping, health insurance cards, frequent shopper cars (i.e. Ulta, Sephora, Maurices), pictures of me and Lil Man, stamps, and other miscellaneous things that no one but me, cares about.
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