Category Archives: Just Em

Lilly Pulitzer Gigi Maxi Dress

alittlebitofem lilly pulitzer gigi maxi

alittlebitofem lilly pulitzer gigi maxi2

alittlebitofem lilly pulitzer gigi maxi3

When I’m on vacation, I always like to pack items that I can just throw on and go. This Lilly Pulitzer Gigi Maxi was perfect for just that. Threw it on, added a hat, and voila – off we went. It is machine washable and has adjustable straps…and you can see it is full of color! Lots and lots of bright colors. But that’s one of the reasons I love it. I’m sure if you have followed me at all, you know what I’m going to say next. Yep. I got it on sale when I was in Charleston. 63 big smackers is all! Score!

I ventured into the mirrored sunglasses this summer too. I love these green Ray Bans. I think they are such a fun color!

In the first picture, that is one of our favorite horses to go and visit when we are in Hilton Head. Harley has lived at Lawton Stables for such a long time. If I remember correctly, he is actually a reject Budweiser Clydesdale because his coloring wasn’t what they wanted (crazy, right?!). When we take him carrots, we try to give a few to the ponies out there too, and he can be such a big bully. So we distract him so the ponies can get a few carrots too 🙂 We’ve seen the stables change so much over the years. It’s such a great facility. When my kiddos were little, they loved to go on pony rides. I was so sad when they were too big to get on the ponies. Check it out if you are ever on the island.

Dress – Lilly Pulitzer Gigi Maxi; Sunnies – Ray Ban; Wedges – Jack Rogers Shelby (on sale!); Hat – can’t remember but I remember I got it for around $20 at The Rack

Lilly Pulitzer Getaway Coverup

alittlebitofem lilly pulitzer getaway coverup2

alittlebitofem lilly pulitzer getaway coverup

When I was in Hilton Head and saw this adorable fringed cover up on sale for $59, I just had to pick it up. It’s such a fun print, and who could resist the fringe?! It’s nice and light weight for those humid and hot days at the beach or pool.

The hubs and I went on a getaway weekend to one of our favorite spots, Highlands, NC. Our favorite spot to stay was purchased by Old Edwards Hospitality and they did a lot of work on it this past winter and spring. The Half-Mile Farm looked just gorgeous, including their updated pool. Two of our favorite parts they didn’t change: gourmet breakfast is included and so are wine and appetizers each night. We like to workout while we are on vacation, and it’s so nice to now have access to the Old Edwards Inn’s workout facility that is in town. It’s only a few minute drive, so no excuse not to use it. Highly recommend this place if you need a little break!

Coverup – Lilly Pulitzer Getaway; Flip Flops – Reef; Sunnies – Louis Vuitton

Rodan + Fields Lash Boost Results

After a few months of seeing Rodan + Field’s Lash Boost results all over my Facebook feed, I finally caved. I’ve been using their Redefine products for over two years now, and I love them. The brand has so many options for all skin types. Yes, it can be pricey, but you only have one skin and it’s your largest organ, so you have to take care of it, right?!

Being a natural blonde, my eyelashes were basically nonexistent without mascara on them. You can see them when I reviewed benefit’s mascaras. Now with using Lash Boost after 16 weeks, they are so much thicker and darker…and definitely longer.

Using Lash Boost is so easy to use. I literally pull the little brush out of the tube and swipe it on the upper lash line of both eyes. There’s enough product to do both of my eyes (and I have yet to have to reorder after 16 weeks!). You are to only use it on your top lashes.

rodan and fields lash boost alittlebitofem

As you can see, they are so much longer and fuller. (Let’s not look at how horrible my brows look in the before pic…they were bushier so that skews how long they look now. LOL) I have people ask me all the time if I have gotten lash extensions, and I love saying NO! I couldn’t imagine the upkeep with getting extensions – and of course the price.

lash boost alittlebitofem

Don’t mind the eyeshadow in the before picture above 🙂 This is to really show how thick and long my lashes have become. In the before picture, I had SO many coats of mascara on too to even get them to look that thick. Also, my lashes just curl by themselves now; I do not use a lash curler.

I do not have sensitive eyes, so this product works well for me. My friend said she tried it but her eyes were too sensitive. Unfortunately, she couldn’t use it.

If you are looking for an affordable solution to longer lashes, you should definitely try Lash Boost. If your Facebook friend’s list isn’t full of consultants like mine, let me know and I can get you in touch with one!

14 Years and Counting

jim and em 14 years

I wanted to take a few minutes to wish this guy a Happy 14th Anniversary. Fourteen years ago, we dedicated our love to each other in front of many family and friends. Since then, we’ve had two kids, grieved over too many family members we’ve lost, moved to the South, rescued two St. Bernards, brought a French Bulldog home, watched our daughter go through open heart surgery, bought two homes, changed four jobs, traveled a ton, and written a story with many ups and downs. We’ve written our own story that tackles every emotion. Every marriage is tested, ours included. No one is perfect. No marriage is perfect. People make mistakes. Forgiveness is given – and earned. Focus shifts to the children, without remembering why you became a couple in the first place. But over the last year, we’ve taken time to start a new chapter. Well, I guess it’s more of starting the next chronicles of our family instead of just one chapter.

I love this man. More than ever. I’m lucky he chose me to be his wife and the one to spend his life with. He’s my biggest cheerleader, but also keeps me level headed when I tend to think with my emotions. I wake up every morning thinking how lucky I am to have him and our family. I’ll never take it for granted.

“In all the world, there is no heart for me like yours. In all the world, there is no love for you like mine.”  — Maya Angelou 

Keeping it Short

screen-shot-2017-02-06-at-5-46-09-pm

A fresh cut always makes me happy! I was looking back at pictures over the last couple of years and was looking at my hair when I was leaving it longer. UH…what on earth was I thinking?!?!?!?! Short is the way to go on me. I see some of these women with gorgeous long hair, and sometimes I wish I had that. But, I don’t. And I’ve finally accepted that. Long hair just hangs on me. I need short. I need to frame my face. I need layers. I told my family to never let me try and grow my hair again 🙂

Extreme Kitchen Makeover

Hello, everyone! I know it’s been a very long time since I’ve blogged, but I’ve had a lot of personal things going on as well as a ridiculously busy fall season at work. I had to set aside the blog for a bit, so I’m coming back slowly but surely. And thanks to a few of you who actually reached out to me and asked if everything was ok…that really meant a lot to me. Oh, and if you used to follow me on Instagram, my account was hacked and deleted and I lost everything. But, I’m taking that as a fresh start, so if you would like to follow me, just click here (my account is set to private, so just request to follow).

This fall we made the big decision of gutting our kitchen. Not just a simple remodel of painting cabinets or new countertops. I’m talking complete gut. Ripping out floors. Ripping out cabinets. Not having a kitchen for six weeks. Although the process was long, I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

Here’s the before pictures. These are the original cabinets from when the house was built in 1996. Some of them were literally falling off the hinges. We had done band-aids of paint, granite, and a backsplash, but we knew an overhaul was needed.

img_2996

img_2999

img_3007

img_3009

One big thing we wanted was an island, one big enough for four kitchen stools. Another want – a new range with a hood. We first enlisted our cabinet guy (who is phenomenal), and he really understood our vision and came up with great drawings. After those were approved, it was time to pick granite, tile, backsplash, paint color, lights, appliances….so. much. to. pick. out. But, we did it with ease because we did have a vision of what we wanted. And of course I pinned everything so I wouldn’t forget. 🙂

It was time for demo! No, I didn’t pick up a sledgehammer…I left it to the professionals for that. They did a good job putting up plastic, but dust was everywhere.

img_3013

img_3014

img_3015

img_3027

img_3028

After the demo, work could really start. Of course if one thing was off track, it threw off the entire timeline. It only happened a couple of times 😉 It just floors me how some people take zero pride in their work; I just don’t understand that.

img_3113

img_3114

img_3115

img_3150

With the drywall and tile done, the cabinets could finally be put in! We wanted dark cabinets with light countertops…and the stain and glaze we chose for the cabinets ended up being perfect.

img_3172

img_3180

img_3188

I am not the cook in our family, so I really left the range selection to my husband. We did decide we only wanted four burners and added the option of a griddle and grill.

img_6610

After the paint and walls were ready to go, we were at the finish line. I do have to say our walls were no easy task though…the previous owner of the house texturized them. It took lots and lots and lots of work to get them smoothed out.

So here’s the new kitchen! Every morning when I come in this room I feel like I live in a new house. It just feels like a bigger space with the lighter walls, countertops, and backsplash. And the island…I didn’t know what I was missing. Not only does it now store the new microwave, but has the four chairs and tons of drawers for storage. There are just a few things still left to do like window treatments in the seating area and new blinds, but those will come after the end-of-year bonuses at work. 🙂

img_6640-1

img_6641

img_6642

img_6643

img_6644

img_6645

img_6690

We couldn’t be happier with how everything turned out. The six weeks of eating out and the house being a disaster was worth it.

benefit Roller Lash and They’re Real Review

I’ve been wearing benefit’s They’re Real mascara now for a few years. I love it. It has always done a great job lengthening my lashes. I find myself on the weekends just wearing this mascara and lip gloss. Being a blonde, my lashes are super light. Actually, it looks like I don’t have any at all. I promise they’re there! So that’s why I throw on a few coats of mascara so you can actual see them!

Since benefit came out with the new Roller Lash mascara, I’ve been so curious to try it. I love They’re Real and the results I get, but I wanted to see if the Roller Lash actually curled my lashes like it claimed too. So here’s what I did…

benefit roller lash theyre real

I layered them. Roller Lash does do a fantastic job of curling my eyelashes, but it’s definitely not a thickening and lengthening mascara (for me at least). So I have been putting a few coats of that on first and layering a few coats of They’re Real on while Roller Lash is still wet to make my eyelashes pop even more. Both of these mascaras have neatly designed wands to make sure the mascara is distributed the way you want. As you can see from the picture, layering them gives me the curl, thickening, and lengthening that I want.

See, I told you I have eyelashes. Actually quite long ones I might add 🙂

Click here to get They’re Real and here to get Roller Lash. I hope you like them as much as I do!

2015 Wrap Up

The last day of the year. I can’t believe it. I know every year I say and think that “this has been the fastest year yet!” But, no, really….this has been the fastest year. I just wanted to say thank you to all of you who regularly read the blog and take a peek inside my life. (Sorry the blog was so neglected the last few months!) This blog is my creative outlet, and I appreciate you taking the time to read – or just look through the pictures 🙂 I hope everyone has a safe New Year’s and a wonderful 2016!

Here are a few of my favorite looks this year!

 

 

Baby Foot Exfoliation Peel Review

Forewarning – if you don’t like feet or pictures of feet, you don’t want to read this post!

Now…to get on to the review…

I saw a blogger talk about her experience with Baby Foot Exfoliation Peel, and I was intrigued. Then a few days later, I saw people.com do a review on it as well. So I thought I better try it!

baby-foot-peel 2

I wouldn’t say my feet are in horrible shape, but I definitely have a few calluses that are pretty rough – and my typical pedicure never seems to really tackle them. So I thought for the price of a pedicure, I could try this exfoliation treatment. I read a lot of reviews and saw a ton of people’s pictures. Truthfully, they were a little scary! Some people’s feet looked…well…disgusting during the process. But, the after pictures made it all worth it.

So here are my feet before:

before_baby_foot_peel

I hate the calluses underneath my big toes and on the balls of my feet. My heels are pretty scratchy as well. I know it’s a little hard to see in the picture.

Did I mention I convinced my mom to do it with me? 🙂 She wanted to have smooth feet, too. So each package comes with two booties filled with a jelly substance. The directions recommended you soak your feet in warm water first before putting the booties on…so we soaked for 10 minutes.

Then it was time to put on the booties…and sit. For one hour. And I understand why they don’t want you walking around because the gel substance made you slip around in the booties and you could easily lose your balance.

baby_foot_peel_booties

After the hour, we washed the substance off our feet. And that was it! Now it was time to wait for the peeling to start. In the directions, it said it could take a few days before you start seeing anything happen. And they were right! Mine started to peel before my mom’s due to the fact with how much I work out, my sweaty feet and wearing socks helped get the process started. Mine started three days after I had the booties on, and my mom’s started to peel about five days later.

Here are my feet five days later – and the peel was in full force:

during_baby_foot_peel

Now, I know there are some of you out there saying “I bet it was so fun to pick the skin off!” The instructions said not to peel it off. Let it happen naturally. So, as hard as it was, I didn’t pick at my feet. See the blue under my feet? Those are the socks I wore constantly when I was home. The socks made my unable to pick.

The tops of my feet didn’t peel too much. It pretty much stopped half way up my toes. Now, the top of my mom’s feet peeled like crazy!! She wasn’t as willing to share pictures 🙂

I was able to hide my peeling by wearing pumps to work. If I would have worn sandals to work and people looked down at my feet, they probably would have looked away in disgust. The skin peeled off a lot on the sides. You should have seen my kids’ faces when I showed them! It was pretty priceless.

So here are the results:

after_baby_foot_peel

They definitely are so much smoother. The skin just feels new and like the name says, baby like. It helped with my two trouble spots. Although they aren’t gone by any means, they are much better. The flash from the camera also caught the nice shine from the new skin! My mom’s feet are also so much smoother, and she is happy with her results. Her peeling lasted longer than mine, probably nine days.

Unless you don’t mind the peeling, you may want to wait until fall or winter to do the peel. But I highly recommend it. It’s such a great way to get rid of the dead layer of skin on your feet naturally.

Here’s a side-by-side for comparison:

before_and_after_baby_foot_peelClick here to order yours! 

Henri Bendel Travel Gear On Sale!

I absolutely love my Henri Bendel travel gear that I have collected over the years! They hold up so well and when the adorable pattern is covered by a durable vinyl…it’s a win-win in my travel book. The best part of this time of year – their great travel pieces are on sale! Here two pieces I highly recommend:

henri_bendel_carry_all

First is the Extra Large Carry All. The best feature – it hangs! I love putting this on the back of the door in a hotel room or even just hanging it from a towel rack. I can fit all of my essentials in this bad boy – travel sized shampoo, conditioner, lotion, shave gel, full bar of soap, eye cream, full sized toothpaste, toothbrush, day cream, night cream, etc… See, I’m not lying. It fits everything. And you can snag this today for $57.60!

henri_bendel_four_Piece

Next is the Four Piece Cosmetic Bag. For starters, the three smaller bags fit nicely into the big one for storage purposes. I’ve found myself just using the various pieces for short trips. The striped bag is perfect for when you are just taking your essential makeup for a quick trip; it is long enough to hold your brushes, too. The smaller polka dots bags are good for your girly that-time-of-the-month products. The largest one perfectly hold my brushes and full size hair products! The sale price…$44.10!

I know it’s only July, but this is also the perfect time to start thinking about Christmas gifts. Henri Bendel has such a good sale going on right now, not just on travel goodies but their handbags, jewelry and fun accessories!

Favorite Things – Sweaty Bands Headbands

thursday_header

My hair is not long enough to just throw back in a pony tail. I’ve got to have some sort of band to hold my short bangs back. Because what is worse than your sweaty bangs flopping in your face while you are working out? Well I’m sure some things are worse – but you get the point.

I had a hard time finding workout headbands that actually hold my hair back AND DO NOT FALL OUT OF PLACE. Whoah you say…you just used all caps. That’s right. I’ve tried lucy and lululemon bands and they don’t hold a candle to Sweaty Band headbands! When I had those brands on, I had to constantly reposition them because they would start slipping. So aggravating while dancing in Zumba and your headband just falls on the floor mid-dance.

Sweaty Bands do not slip. Once I put it in my hair for a workout, that’s the first and last time I’ll touch it until I’m home and ready to take it out of my hair. The fabric on the underside is a velvety feel, and that is the magic trick. I was lucky enough to try out one for free…my company actually has customized ones that we give to clients. And it’s black polka dot design. Love dots!

Sweaty Bands Headband

Sweaty Bands Headband

I can’t recommend these headbands enough. It’s the best $15 you will spend for your hair. And they aren’t just for working out! Anyone who wants a cute patterned headband should shop this great band. You won’t be disappointed. If you are…well, you won’t be so I don’t have to worry! 🙂

Here and here are some great black and white options! There are also a ton of designs on their website.

Mom and Daughter Bonding Time – Love It!

alittlebitofem

Last week, the girl and I saw Ariana Grande and Rixton in concert. Going to concerts has turned into mommy and daughter adventures. And I love every moment…and I hope she does, too.

When we were getting ready for the show, I was just looking at my little girl and realizing that she is growing up too fast. You know when they are babies and you just want them to keep reaching those milestones? “I can’t wait for her to sit up. I can’t wait for her to walk. I can’t wait until she gets out of her car seat.” Those milestones come and go so quickly. I just can’t believe she’s going to be 11 in a few short months. As I was fixing my hair, she got in my closet (like she always does) to play in my high heels. When she put one pair on – she was almost as tall as me! AHHHHHH! I know the day will come when she will actually look me eye to eye. It will be here before I know it.

I’m trying to learn to enjoy it all. Since you can’t take time and slow it down, you have to live in the moment. Put the phones down. Enjoy the time you are spending with your children. Before the concert, we ate at P.F. Changs and just talked. About anything and everything. I think that was my favorite part of our evening. Just hearing about her school day and swimming and just life as a fifth grader. I want her to always know I will be there to listen.

We both enjoyed the concert. I have to say Rixton was a great opener. They knew how to engage the crowd – and they are great singers. Did I mention their British accents are awesome? I’m a sucker for accents. Ariana has some big pipes for such a petite girl. I could tell it was her first headlining tour; it seemed a little unpolished as she constantly exited the stage to change and there were big gaps of time. I wouldn’t rate it in my top shows I’ve ever seen, but the girl enjoyed it, and that’s what matters. I bought the tickets for her (and I’m so glad she didn’t want that $40 concert t-shirt either!).

I’m looking forward to many more mother daughter bonding adventures! How do you bond with your daughter?

Me: Dress – Anthropologie (super sale!!); Sandals – Kohl’s (old); Necklace – Tiffany; Watch – Rolex

Girl: Dress – Lilly Pultizer via ThredUp; Flip flops – Target (old) 

Follow Em on Instagram

So…I’ve had Instagram for a few years. I love messing with the filters and having fun with photos. I’ve always had it set on the private setting, but I thought some of you might like a closer peek inside of my life. Typically there’s lots of kiddo cuteness 🙂 If you want to follow me, click the image below or search @alittlebitofem on Instagram.

alittlebitofem instagram

They’re Real Mascara Makes a Difference

With blonde eyelashes, if I don’t wear mascara, it basically looks like I don’t even have any! Being so light, they don’t seem like they are long either. Oh but they are! They just need a little help.

I’ve been using They’re Real mascara from benefit for almost three years. I. Love. It. And you can see why…

they're real mascara example

benefit_theyrereal_fullsize

On the weekends I tend to wear minimal makeup…or none at all, which of course is my favorite. Sometimes my face just needs a break. Oh wait, and I get lazy. 🙂 Even just adding mascara, I feel somewhat made up. It just pops my eyes.

This mascara really lengthens my lashes. As you can see, it’s more of a lengthener than a thickener, which I am completely fine with that. I’m sure if I put tons of layers on they would thicken up, but I want them to seem more natural.

I can’t recommend this mascara enough. It really is one of my favorite beauty products! What do you use? What’s your favorite?

stila’s Smudge Crayon Review

I love stila’s eye shadows. I’ve been wearing them for over 10 years. I find their colors are so pigmented, thus having to use less of the product and the eyeshadow lasting for such a long time.

On Haute Look, they had stila. So of course I checked it out to see what was on sale. I saw these Smudge Crayons, and for $8 I couldn’t resist trying them. I have a deep navy and my favorite Kitten color. Even though I saw these crayons don’t have great reviews on stila’s website, I freakin’ love my Smudge Crayons!

I’ve been using them for a couple of months now. And on Friday I thought I would do a little test. Here’s what I did:

  • 6:30 a.m. – Used my Kitten Smudge Crayon with stila’s powder Golightly shadow in the crease (liner was stila’s waterproof liquid liner in dark brown).
  • Worked all day!
  • 6:00 p.m. – Sweated my booty off at the gym lifting and walking on the treadmill with all of my makeup on.
  • 10:30 p.m. – took another picture of my eye makeup at the end of the day. And it looked fabulous!

stila_smudge_crayon_review

The crayon goes on very silky and smooth. Seriously, I use it like a crayon coloring on a piece of paper. To me, it acts like a a perfect primer to set my crease shadow. I use the powder Kitten color, too, and I do feel the crayon pops more.

You may be thinking, “Em, you said you had a deep navy, too. How does that work for you?” Now, for the navy color, I’ve only used it as a liner. And it too lasts all day. I line my eyes and then use a Q-tip to smudge it more. It is so pigmented that I have not tried it all over my lid. That may be a bit much for work, huh?! 🙂

I highly recommend the Smudge Crayons if you are looking for a great new type of shadow!

bumble and bumble Prêt-à-Powder – it works!

I’ve always been told that it is good to give your hair a break and not wash it everyday. But as a blonde, sometimes I find it hard to do. Why? Because I feel my hair looks like a big ball o’ grease the next day! I get so jealous of my brunette coworkers who can go three or four days between washes (but they also have long hair where they can do braids, pony tails, etc.).

bumble and bumble made a hair powder back in the day that I loved. They discontinued it, I cried, and stocked up on a few bottles. When those ran out, I cried again. bumble and bumble tried to replace it with a spray powder which did NOT work as well AT ALL. But they came out with yet another replacement that is freakin’ fantastic. The Prêt-à-Powder!

At first, I didn’t know if I wanted to spend $26 on hair powder. I know the brand is great. But seriously? It’s powder. I’m so glad I did though because it works great for my blonde hair. And I’ve had my bottle for almost a year and it’s only 1/2 gone! How the top is designed, it doesn’t put a ton of product out at once, so you end up not wasting it. See (please don’t get grossed out by my grease!)…

Bumble and bumble Prêt-à-Powder

 

Now, I’m a visual person, so I wanted to show you how well this product works. These are before and after pictures of using the Prêt-à-Powder. This was after not washing my hair for one day.

Bumble and bumble Prêt-à-Powder

Bumble and bumble Prêt-à-Powder

 

As you can see, it takes away the grease and oil. What it also does a great job of is giving the hair some volume. I shake it all over, but focus on my part and the hair around my face.

While I have done the Johnson & Johnson baby powder trick in the past, this powder 1. doesn’t make you smell like a baby’s bottom or 2. leave a white cast in your hair. Although it’s pricier, it does a much better job. And the scent is wonderful and not overpowering. After you put it on, you don’t even notice it.

You’ve got to try this powder!

bumble-and-bumble-pret-a-powder

Latest Happenings – Matron of Honor

One of my most favorite people in the entire world got married last weekend – my beautiful cousin, Heather. She and I are very close, and she is close to her other cousin on her dad’s side of the family, too, so we both acted as Matrons of Honor. We were both so honored Heather asked us both to stand up with her.

Heather is more than a cousin. She’s always been more like my sister. The memories we have are endless – and full of so many laughs. We took her on many vacations with us…she became my travel companion. We’d end up fighting at least once each vacation, but isn’t that what “sisters” are supposed to do?! 🙂 She always helped me get out of my comfort zone, and she was more adventurous than I. I hate living so far away from her now, but I know she’s always there for me.

And now I’m so happy she’s finally found her prince! I remember a little over two years ago, she was going to give up on finding love. I told her that it would come when she wasn’t looking…and it did! Now I hope they have some cute babies to add to our family!

Heather is a makeup artist and hair stylist, so her coworker and best friend did our hair and makeup. It was awesome! I can’t tell you the last time I had my makeup professionally done – and used bobby pins in my hair!

DSC_3709 DSC_3710

I think my makeup turned out awesome. My skin looked flawless!

DSC_3746

And my hair was curled with a flat iron. I’ve got to practice curling with my flat iron. Marcy, the girl who did my hair, just curled and then started pinning randomly. I LOVED it!

DSC_3735 DSC_3756DSC_3753

The wedding was at the top of my parent’s building in Chicago. They don’t call it The Windy City for nothing. Look at our hair during the ceremony – and we are both holding our dresses down 🙂

DSC_3803

I’m sad I couldn’t help my cousin as much, so when she asked me to put together her flowers for the reception, I was ecstatic! I think they turned out pretty darn well. I loved the vintage mason jars Heather found!

DSC_3783

Remember how I said we loved to laugh – well, I think this picture proves that point!

heather_emily

I love you, cousin!!! Many years of love and happiness…and thanks for having me be a part of your big day! ❤

 

Daddy’s Girl

I don’t care that I’m 34. I will always call my dad “daddy.”

As an only child, I’m very close to both of my parents. But, I’ll always remember weekend errands with my daddy. Seems like we would always go pick something up at True Value…and end the day at the car wash. I loved hanging out with him, and I always looked forward to Saturdays.

He also tends to give me advice at just the right times. And when he does, I always listen. His advice is invaluable. He also always has a way to throw in some dry humor as well; it’s his way. I’ve learned so much about the working world from him, with the best advice being to “Choose your battles wisely.”

He’s also been the greatest Pop-pop to my kiddos. He is wrapped around both of their little fingers. And he would do absolutely anything for them – and they know it. I look at his relationship with them, and it warms my heart.

Here’s to you, daddy! Love you!

DSC_3528

Tips to Keep Your Spray Tan

tips for spray tan

 

I’ve had quite a few friends ask me for my tips for keeping my spray tans, which have inspired this post! I’ve been getting spray tans for vacations for the past three years, so I think I’ve finally figured out what works! If you get a custom spray tan (i.e., someone sprays the tan on you) and spend a decent chuck of change for one, you want that sucker to last! I have a fantastic girl at my local Solar Dimensions who does a fabulous job. She’s so meticulous, and I love that. These tips can work for your booth tans, too, but I think those tans can be so uneven to begin with, so it’s harder to keep it even after showering and sweating.

So here’s my tips for keeping that beloved spray tan!

  1. I think it’s so important that you have moisturized skin. Start lotioning up your body two weeks+ before you get your tan. I used to notice that my tans would start to have a crackle look after a few days, and I determined it was because I was NOT moisturizing my skin before and during my tan. Target those elbows, ankles, and knees. Any lotion works, but I love my Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter.
  2. I make my appointments in the evening. Truthfully, I hate the smell of the tans, and I don’t want any of the tanning product to get on my clothes. Also, I like the tan to soak in all night long before I take a shower in the morning.
  3. Right before you head to get your tan (I do it 30 minutes before), hop in the shower and exfoliate the crap out of your skin. Scrub your elbows, knees, and ankles really well. I also use my light exfoliator on my face. Afterwards, do NOT put on any lotion or makeup. Be squeaky clean!
  4. Some people wear their swimsuits, some go completely nude, some just keep their underwear on…do what feels comfortable for you during your tan. Just remember you will have tan lines.
  5. After you get home from your tan, avoid water and sweating. When you head to bed, the tanning solution will rub off on your sheets. BUT, it does come out in the wash.
  6. When you hop in the shower, there are different tips in themselves! Do not use a washcloth or loofah to wash your body. Lather up your body with your hands only. Washcloths are the worst – you will just see the tan come right off. No super hot water; my girl told me hot water is a no-no. Try to take shorter showers. Shave before your tan so you don’t have to shave those legs so much while you have your tan (so thankful I have blonde hair!)
  7. Once you turn the water off, pat yourself dry with a towel. Do not rub! Again, you’ll see the tan come right off on the towel.
  8. Then, immediately lotion up your entire body. You want to keep that skin and tan moisturized! Do this after EVERY shower.

Now, if you get a tan before vacation, you have the challenge of sunscreen. Dun, dun, duuuuuuuuunnnnnnn! I try and go for an oil-free sunscreen. Neutrogena has some great oil free options.

For those who love to workout, you just need to be sure to wear wicking fabric to take the sweat away and to pat dry with a towel.

My last tan I kept for 10 days! I was actually shocked myself! But over the three years, I’ve learned what not to do. What are some tips that you would want others to know?

A Momma’s Love in Red

I love my mom. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. She is an amazing woman who has taught me so much about love and life…and how to shop. But most importantly, she taught me how to be a mother. How to love my children unconditionally. I can’t thank her enough.

DSC_2994

This last Sunday was my 11th Mother’s Day as a momma! Well, one was when the girl was in the womb, but that totally still counts. Pregnant women everywhere would agree with that statement. These two are my world! I was a younger mom having the girl just after my 24th birthday, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. As I look at my life and reflect on how I’m mothering my children, I think I’m doing a pretty darn good job. I’m protective, but not a helicopter parent. I comfort my children when they are sad, and try and get them to talk about their feelings. I let them make their own choices (to some degree), so they can grow as individuals. It’s so important that these two grow up knowing how to handle life by themselves – that mommy and daddy won’t always be there to solve their problems.

DSC_2996

I had a great Mother’s Day. The girl loves to coordinate with me, and I’m cherishing every freakin’ moment!! So of course we both got new dresses to wear to brunch. I picked up both of our dresses at Von Maur (my favorite store on the planet!). I got mine on sale, while I spotted hers in the girl’s section and couldn’t resist. But, I know she will wear it a ton this summer. It is so fun being this girl’s momma! And of course my son, too! 🙂

Tabitha Cherie Dress Tabitha Cherie Dress

 

Dress – Tabitha (this was sold out at Anthro!); Shoes – Vince Camuto; Bracelet – Stella & Dot

Linking up with The Pleated Poppy.

%d bloggers like this: