September Favorites

I can’t believe September is already over! I look forward to that month every year and then it just seems to fly by way too fast. September brought so many good memories, cool weather, and I know fall is just getting started. Today I’m going to tell you about my favorite things from September, which is fitting because September is also my favorite month and this is my favorite time of the year.

“Chumpkin” Lattes. I’m really not a huge fan of the Pumpkin Spice Latte obsession but I did have a birthday free drink at Starbucks the other day and thought “why not just get a trendy, free one.” I saw they have a new Pumpkin Spice CHAI Tea Latte and that sounded like something I would enjoy because I love chai. I had THE most amazing vanilla chai when I was visiting cousins in Virginia recently, and I’ve been looking for a chai to help fill that void since. While the PSL Chai Latte was amazing and tasted like the holidays in a cup–it was extremely sweet so you might want to ask that they not put so much syrup in it. I looked later and for a Venti sized drink, there were 5 pumps of PSL and 5 pumps of chai. Yikes. Shades of Brown on Brookside, in Tulsa, does a really yummy replica of this drink that’s not nearly as sweet.

Maple Sea Salt RX Bar. Since doing Whole30 a few times, I’ve come to enjoy RX Bars a lot because of the ingredients. RX Bar recently came out with a Maple Sea Salt flavor and it was heavenly.

Thunder by Imagine Dragons. I’ve been training for another half marathon lately and this song has pretty much been on repeat on runs. I love the beat of songs like this that make you want to move and push yourself harder. This song will definitely be on my music play list on race day.

Next I have a few beauty favorites…

 

NYX Wonder Stick. This product is meant for contouring but I’ve been using it as a bronzer. I’ve had issues with powder bronzers working for a while but then getting muddy on my face. One end has a light cream highlighter and the other has the darker shade–I don’t really use the light shade that much but I really like the product as a whole because it’s really easy to blend out.

Glossier Generation G Matte Lipstick. Oh, Glossier! My sweet cousin bought me a few Glossier items for my birthday and I got SOOO excited once I saw the iconic pink, bubble packaging. I received the Generation G Lipstick in the shade Leo and it is the PERFECT shade for me because it’s the color of my natural lips. The formula of this is very creamy and it has been long-lasting so far.

Glossier Rose Balm Dotcom. I’ve heard so much about the Balm Dotcom product and was really wanting to try it. The Rose scent/flavor is slightly tinted and has been a very moisturizing lip product to use. You can also use this on your hands, cuticles, elbows, etc. Thank you, Bec!!

Valjean Labs Facial Serum in Glow. I found this serum for around $6 at TJ Maxx when I was looking for a new bottle of vitamin c serum. This is very similar to the Glossier Super Glow Serum from what I can tell. I’ve been focusing on trying to even out my skin tone and lighten acne scars, and this has helped a lot in the few weeks I’ve been using it.

Honey Girl Organics Face & Eye Cream. I received this moisturizer in my July BlessBox and I still love it! I’ve been using this at night and it feels like it restores my skin while I sleep. The formula is also very thick–so you don’t need to use a lot. You can see how much I’ve used since July in the picture below.

Fall Closet Essentials PDF. One of my favorite blogs to follow is The Fresh Exchange. One of the recent blog posts gave readers a PDF of Fall Closet Essentials and that has been super helpful to determine what I might be missing for the upcoming months.

Ankle Boots. IT’S BOOT SEASON!! I used to wear riding boots non-stop during the fall but in recent years I’ve only been wearing ankle boots. I was looking for a tan-ish pair of ankle boots to add to my closet and really liked these that I found at Target! I even had a Cartwheel discount for them–the Cartwheel app is a must have. This boot is called the DC Dylan Laser Cut Split Booties in Gray and I’ve had so many complements already in the few weeks I’ve worn them.

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August Favorites

Hi everyone! It’s the end of August and time for me to tell you all about the things I enjoyed this month. I have a little bit of food, beauty, and a movie so keep on reading if you want to know what they are. What have been your favorite things in August?

Trader Joe’s Sparkling Water

Drinking water during the summer can get really boring to me so I really like to drink sparkling or flavored water to help make it more interesting. Trader Joe’s came out with some new flavors of their sparkling mineral water that were special for the summer and they are so good! My favorite flavors are Island Colada and Cranberry Clementine.

Trader Joe’s Everything but the Bagel Seasoning

This has been such a yummy seasoning blend to cook with and it really does make everything taste like an everything bagel. My favorite way to use this seasoning this month is in hash browns or roasted potatoes. So good!!

Elizavecca Milky Piggy Kangsi Pack Deep Cleansing Gold Facial Mask

That name though. I found this on Amazon and bought it mainly because it looked super interesting. It applies in a gold gel but then turns white as it dries. I think it does a good job of deep cleaning my skin and pores. Plus, isn’t the packaging kind of funny??

C.O. Bigelow Vanillamint Supreme 2X Lip Shine

Who remembers these lip glosses from years ago? Bath & Body Works just started carrying these again and I stocked up a couple of months ago during a sale. I love that these glosses taste like mint and give you fresher breath. This gloss is completely clear– which I like because I’m not a fan of colored lip glosses.

Stella by Stella McCartney 

I absolutely LOVE this perfume! My cousin used to wear this all the time and I loved how it smelled on her, so I decided to get some of my own. I have been using this very sparingly and I think this bottle has lasted me a couple of years. Stella’s main notes are of rose and amber. I’m going to be really sad when I completely run out of this fragrance but I do think it’s worth the cost because it has lasted me so long.

Gifted (2017)

This was such a good movie. I watched it a few weeks ago and it definitely tugged at my heart-strings. Gifted is about a man named Frank who is raising his child prodigy niece, Mary, after her mother takes her own life. Mary’s father was never in her life and so Frank has raised her all alone from the beginning. Later in the movie, Mary’s grandmother just shows up and fights for custody of Mary, but Frank’s unconditional love is put on display. There was one scene in the movie that stuck out the most to me, because I am an aunt and I completely understand the love that Frank had for Mary. At one point, Mary learns that her biological father is in town and he doesn’t even make an attempt to meet her. Mary is very distraught and doesn’t understand why her own father doesn’t love her. Frank then tells Mary that they are going for a ride and he takes her to the local hospital–just to sit in the waiting room all night. They wait and wait and Mary even asks “how much longer?” After a while, a man bursts through the doors, in surgical clothing, and yells “it’s a boy!” Frank then leans over to Mary and says:

Frank: That’s exactly how it was when you were born.
Mary: This happy?
Frank: This happy.
Mary: Who came out and told everyone?
Frank: I did.
Mary: Can we stay for another?

Ahhhh! That totally made this auntie boo-hoo her eyes out. Being an aunt is the greatest and I can’t even begin to describe that kind of love, but the movie was such a good portrayal.

July Favorites

Welcome to my July Favorites post! I’m a little shocked that August is next week–time is just flying by, I tell you! I don’t have that many different favorites this month, compared to some other months, but I have a handful of things that I’ve been using consistently this month. Enjoy!

Suits TV Show

I have had Suits on my watch list on Amazon for so long but I’m just not settling in to watch it. Suits is about a college drop-out named Mike who is very law school savvy. So much so that he gets hired by a well-known lawyer and the two must keep the “con” between themselves because Mike is needed at that specific firm. I’m almost through Season 1 and I’m really liking it so far. This show kind of reminds me of White Collar, which is another show I recommend.

Egyptian Magic Cream

I have had this product for a few months now but I have been using it a lot this month. I think I bought this 4 months ago and you can see how much I’ve used. The texture is almost like Vaseline and a little bit goes a long way. Egyptian Magic Cream is made primarily of bees-wax and it can be used for a number of things. I use it primarily for a night-time moisturizer, because it is so thick, but I have been using it more this month to heal a really bad sunburn that I got a few weeks ago.

Jesus Without Borders: What Planes, Trains, & Rickshaws Taught Me About Jesus
by Chad Gibbs

The traveler in me really likes this book because it is a compilation of stories from the author’s travels around the world. Chad Gibbs connects each different culture with how they practice religion and Christianity and it’s so cool to read about the global church from the travel perspective.

Living Proof Perfect Hair Day In-Shower Styler

This is a Birchbox sample that I received over the last couple of months and I had a chance to use it recently. This product is really nice and easy to use because you apply it in the shower, after conditioner, and then lightly rinse it out of your hair. Once out of the shower, towel-dry your hair and the product helps to give you textured waves all day. I used this on a recent trip, where it was just too hot to spend a lot of time on my hair, and it did give me that texture and wave to my very fine and straight hair.

Beautaniq Beauty Blush Serum in the shade Sunrise 

I haven’t been using that many powder makeup items this month because, once you get hot and sweaty, the finish can tend to look a little patchy. This blush serum has been a great alternative and it can be applied with your fingertips or with a beauty sponge. You don’t need a lot at all because the color is very pigmented.

DearTravelerShop on Etsy

I am the most excited about this favorite! If you haven’t heard of Dear Traveler on Etsy, please click the link about and check out the store. How cute are these greeting cards?? This shop is the creative child of one of my dear friends, Maggie, and she has designed and hand-painted each original design. Dear Traveler is based in the UK but ships to the US, and much quicker than I was expecting. I can’t wait to send someone one of these cards and to be a regular customer. Please click on over and place your own order!

I actually have an UN-favorite thing this month and that is the book The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom. I talked about this book in my Summer Reading List but my idea of what the book would be was completely different from what it actually was. I imagined the book to be an innocent, coming-of-age book about navigating social classes. However, this book was filled with violence, rape, families being separated, murder, infant death, etc. I’m sure that, in some aspects, this book is an accurate, historical portrayal of what life on a plantation was like for a black slave under the “ownership” of a white free man, but I didn’t enjoy reading about it. I kept reading the book in hopes that it would get better, but it ended worse than it started. I was disappointed with this book only because it was recommended so highly by multiple Christian women/bloggers who said it was an incredible book. It was pretty, incredibly sad and gruesome and I definitely won’t be reading the sequel, Glory Over Everything. If you are sensitive to graphic and violent content, I wouldn’t recommend that you read this book.

What are some of your favorite (or un-favorite) things this month?

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June 2017 Favorites

June is coming to a close and it’s time for a post about my favorite things of the month! I also hope you are having a great summer so far! Without further delay, keep reading if you want to know what my favorites are this month!

Great Minds Plank Alike Racerback Top from Target. It was time to replace some of my workout clothes a couple of months ago and I have been wearing this shirt a lot lately. I’m not saying that I can plank, longer than 30 seconds, but it gives me a little boost of confidence to know that I COULD plank. Haha!

ArtNaturals Makeup Setting Spray. I bought this on Amazon this month and it has helped my makeup stay on an entire day, even in the heat and humidity. This setting spray is unscented, leaves a semi-matte finish, and is really affordable.

Beach Nights Marshmallow Bath & Body Fragrance. This scent is amazing! I love anything that smells like the ocean/beach/summer/warmth. This fragrance has all of those notes but it’s light and not overpowering. I have been wearing this almost every day!

Derma E Evenly Radiant Brightening Cleanser. I recently ran out of my PCA Cleanser and decided to take a break from it for a little bit, because it is kind of pricey for me. I found this cleanser at Sprouts and wanted to give it a try because I have tried other Derma E products and have really enjoyed them. This cleanser has been gentle, effective, and has helped to brighten and even my skin tone. This brand is also, in my opinion, affordable considering all of the good ingredients they use.

Tree Hut Shea Moisturizing Epsom Salt in Tropical Mango. I’ve been trying out some new workout classes over the last month and although they’ve been great–I’ve woken up the next day unable to move a couple of times. These epsom salts have helped to relax and ease my muscles and I also really like the Mango scent.

ColourPop Super Shock Cheek in Wisp. I had the chance to try out a ColourPop eyeshadow last month and I wanted to try one of the face highlighters, especially since there are so many shades. I’m really excited about the shade I bought because it’s perfect for my skin tone. This product feels like a cream highlighter but it applies just like a powder highlighter. I really like ColourPop products so far and the brand is also very affordable.

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Eating Bird Food PB&J Smoothie. This smoothie has been my go-to, lazy-girl, meal for the last couple of weeks. It’s so good!!! I modified it a little bit, to make it Whole30 compliant, by using almond butter instead of peanut butter and by eliminating the protein powder. Seriously, it’s so good!!

What have you been loving this month?

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May Favorites 

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, “where is this year going??” It’s already the end of May and I just can’t believe it. I feel like summer just crept up on us, but I will gladly welcome it. The end of the month is also a time when I tell you all about my favorite things of May. Enjoy!

I know I meant to read this over the winter but I’m just now starting it. I think I’m a few chapters in and I love it so much already. This book is more memoir-style and tells stories of real life situations and how to hold fast to truth. I can’t wait to read the rest of this book!

bareMinerals Prep Step Radiant Prep Cream. I have been looking for an illuminating makeup primer for this summer and I have been really excited to get my hands on this product. This primer goes on very well, just like a moisturizer, and it gives my skin a subtle glow.

Soap & Glory Hand Food. I received this hand lotion in last month’s BlessBox and I’ve been using it a lot lately. This hand cream has a really nice scent and it reminds me of a rose bar soap my mom used to use when I was little. The finish of this product is silky and smooth, not sticky and greasy.

This Works Deep Pillow Spray. I have read a lot about this pillow spray from other beauty bloggers and I was so happy to get a sample in a Birchbox. I used this pillow spray during a couple of stressful weeks and it did help me fall asleep better and feel more relaxed.

ColourPop Satin Shadow. I also received this eye shadow in last month’s BlessBox and you can see I’ve already hit pan. This eye shadow is a creamy product and I have been using it to layer under powder eye shadows to help it last longer. I have been wanting to try some ColourPop eye products for a long time and this one did not disappoint. The ColourPop makeup products are also super affordable and a great quality!

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Another thing I have been loving the past month is the new Starbucks Gluten-Free Breakfast Sandwich. Praise Jesus, I can eat there now!!! On the days that I have needed to eat a meal out, this has been my go-to!

What are some things you have been loving during the month of May?

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