Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Holy grail products I can't live without!

I rarely talk about beauty or hair products on my blog. I saw a "best of 2009" product list on an awesome beauty blog I discovered recently, Veronika's Blushing, and thought I'd give this a go too!
I have never really paid too much attention to make-up and hair product until recently, but after giving birth last year I have
really noticed a dramatic change in my skin and hair (remember when I pretty much went bald?- glad that's over!). I started to pay attention to new products that would really work with the change in my skin and hair's texture. You'll notice I'm not true to one brand or another, but without further adieu, here's the products that made my holy grail list for 2009!

Best Liquid Foundation:

Mary Kay medium coverage foundation. I've actually used this for several years and am still really pleased with it. I've heard so many great things about the Revlon Colorstay line of foundations, so I think I might give it a try once my MK foundation runs out.

Best Bronzer:

Mary Kay signature Bronze highlighting powder. Since my skin is brown already, I use bronzing powder year round, and treat it like a blush. This one has a slight shimmer- but not noticeably glittery.

Best Blush:
Clinique's Soft pressed powder in Mocha pink.
I got this as a freebie in Clinque's gift with purchase goodie bag. It's subtle, and for me, it gives a 'barely there' blush look on my cheeks.

Overall Favorite Eye Shadow Brand:
A few of my favorites have come from gift with purchase freebies- I love Clinique's line, and I also love Lancome and Stila's line's as well.

Best Eye product:
I cannot say enough good things about Urban Decay's Primer potion. My eyeshadow always creased within a few hours before discovering this base product. It also makes shadow pigment brighter and last longer.

Best Eyeliner:
Lancome Le Stylo Waterproof in Noir.
Smudges nicely for a soft look, and stays put all day long.

Best Mascara:
I'm constantly switching mascaras. I heard great things about Covergirl's Lash Blast, but I hated the lash wand, and that was a deal breaker for me. Right now, I'm using the tail end of a freebie from Clinique- High Impact Mascara, and I really like it. I might have to go buy the full size product!

Best Lip Gloss
I love C.O Bigelow's Mentha Lip Shine. I will end up losing (read: Cameron will hide) this product before it ever runs out. It's minty- so it freshens your breath and makes your lips SO soft.

Best Lipstick:
I don't ever wear lipstick, but when I need a little color, I like Chanel's glossimer in Giggle.

Outstanding Brush:
Sephora's Professional Brush line is AMAZING. The right brush makes all the difference in make-up application!

Best Shampoo/Conditioner Product:
I've been searching for better hair products this year, but haven't quite made the jump to salon grade products yet (I'm nervous about spending my hard earned dollar on something I might not love). I recently discovered L'oreal's EverPure line; it's botanically based and sulfate free (no harsh cleansers!) and the volumizing blend is perfect for my fine, delicate hair. It's also wallet friendly at about 7 bucks a pop. I should also mention that I can go 3 days between washings- which is almost unheard of when you have such fine hair!

Best Hair product:
BioSilk Silk Therapy.
I use this as an iron guard when straightening my hair. It also can be used on skin too- and gives an the appearance of glowing, hydrated skin- awesome if you have an outfit that reveals winter-dry skin! I recall using this on around my neck and bustline on my wedding day for that extra glow.

MVP (Most Valuable Product):

Without a doubt, Smashbox photo finish primer is my favorite product. It goes on underneath foundation for a flawless complexion, and make up stays put all day (and night!). I love how silky it feels, and it makes applying foundation so much smoother. A definite must have for drab, post-partum skin!!!!! (yes, I just used 5 exclamation points. It's that good.)

Runner Up:
Mary Kay's Micro dermabrasion kit. For me, a smooth skin palatte makes application look go on a lot easier, and look so much smoother. I use it about twice a week for fresh looking skin!

Okay, your turn!! What is your absolute favorite product? Or better yet, make a product list of your own and tell me about it!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Snippets

Time for an update, wouldn't you say? A few snippets:

We had a jam-packed, beautiful white Christmas. We spent time with both sides of our families and had so much fun. Cameron gave us the best gift: sleeping in on Christmas morn until 9:00 am (he's usually our alarm clock!).

The G household is a giant sensory overload of toys right now. When we were child free, we liked to spoil our nieces and nephews with the loudest toys we could find. Now that we're parents, I can say with confidence that payback has begun.

The holiday season isn't slowing down just yet; my birthday is the 30th, we're hosting a small get-together on NYE, more family in town on New Years Day, and I'm hosting a bridal shower here on January 2. Whew!

One of the gifts I gave Jon resulted in one of my favorite Christmas memories this year: tight thermal pants + modeling tight thermal pants around the house= hilarity. I laughed, Cameron raised an eyebrow. Note to self- get Jon new thermal pants every year.

Sometimes I like to eat my own words. I mentioned awhile back that I'd never go shopping among the crazies in search of the best holiday sales (um, black friday). Well this morning I woke up, threw on some clothes and headed out in search of 50% holiday decor. I scored big at Pier 1 imports, and got tons of wrapping paper for next year. I'm thinking I might even go out again after Cameron goes to bed tonight!

I hope you all had a wonderful and merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A shower invite

My friend Carly is getting married in a few months, and I'm hosting the shower at my house just after the holidays! I've been working on this little invite to send out to the guests and I think it turned out pretty well. Her wedding color is bright yellow, so I tried to incorporate that into the invite. I also added pearls onto them as a final touch (lets just pray they stay on in the mailing process!).

I also designed the wedding invitations and I hope to share them very soon!

Monday, December 14, 2009


My newest nephew, Christian!
He was born this afternoon and he is so precious. He was born at the same hospital as Cameron- I even recognized a few of the same nurses! He weighed just over 7 lbs and was 19 inches long. I can't wait till he gets a little bigger; I'm sure him and Cameron will be good friends growing up.

Christian brings my niece/nephew count to 19 (but who's counting?). I also have 2 more nephews on the way- one due in a few weeks, and another due in February!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The curio cabinet & other Christmas decor.

I finished the curio cabinet and brought it in the house this weekend. I was a little concerned that once I got it back inside the house and under natural lighting that I would really see some flaws in my work. I had been working on it in the garage, and most times under poor florescent lighting. I'm going to toot my own horn here for a sec- the cabinet looks awesome. Even the husband was impressed (I think he was a wee bit scared I might ruin it).

I should also mention that in a previous post, I referred to this cabinet as "giant". My husband was reading that post and started laughing outloud. I asked him what was so funny.

"Um, giant? That's the smallest curio cabinet I've ever seen!"

"Well, It's bigger than me," I replied.
"yeah, that's cause you're a tiny little pip squeak!"

So I suppose it's not that big. Anywho, I love how it turned out, and I think the stain is beautiful! I waited until Cameron's birthday came and went to put up the Christmas tree. So far, he hasn't been too interested in it, but he has a lot of new toys to distract him.

This is how we prevent a 7 1/2 foot Christmas tree from toppling onto our toddler. =)

We don't have a mantle, so I used some pretty ribbon to tie our stockings to the banister. We're totally ready for Christmas now!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Cameron- One Year!

Tomorrow is Cameron's birthday- and to be honest, it feels a little like Christmas Eve around here with all the preparation and excitement! It's hard to believe that it was a year ago that I posted about our precious new gift. (Check out pictures of vintage Cameron here and here!) It would be an understatement to say that we have been truly blessed by our Creator.

We took these pictures about a week before Thanksgiving- and I'm so glad I didn't wait until December. It has been absolutely FRIGID around here, and we find ourselves staying in and warm as much as possible! (plus, Cameron doesn't have a winter coat yet- but he's getting one for his birthday! Shhh!! =) Here are a few of my favorites.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

A little project sneak preview

I wanted to pop in and show you guys what's been consuming every second of my free time lately. I finished my Ikea mirrors, and moved on to re-staining the giant curio cabinet in our living room. It's definitely been a labor of love, but I am so pleased with how it's turning out, and I'm really glad I decided to keep this piece.

This is what it looked like in good lighting-

And now- waiting for the stain to dry!

I spent close to 6 hours sanding, and about 2-3 hours staining. I think I'm pretty happy with the color, so all it needs is a clear coat of poly, and it's done!

And in other news- I've got Cameron's one year pictures that I can't wait to share- they just need a little editing (he was drooling during the entire shoot!) and then I'll post 'em here. Take care!


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