Archive for the Health & Beauty Category

Oct 8 2014

Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Supporting the Cause

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  I’m sure nearly all of us have been affected by this devastating disease in some way or another, whether you or someone you know has or have had breast cancer.  According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.  That is an astonishing number.  Though rare, men are also diagnosed with this disease.  The best way to reduce your risk of breast cancer or catch it in its early stage is to be educated, know your family history and perform monthly self exams.  In fact, according to the National Cancer Institute, when breast cancer is detected early, in the localized stage  the 5 year survival rate is 98%.  So if you haven’t already, be sure to get checked and remind your loved ones too!  Check your insurance coverage, as some plans don’t charge a co-pay for preventative office visits.  Mark your calendar every month to remind you to do a self exam.  To learn more about breast cancer screening and early detection, or to make a donation, here are a few resources you can visit: National Breast Cancer Foundation or Susan G. Komen.  If you are someone you know is battling breast cancer we are praying for you.  If you have a specific prayer request, please feel free to leave us a comment or send us an email.

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I’ve rounded up some pink products that raise awareness for breast cancer and many of the companies give proceeds towards organizations that benefit breast cancer.  What is better than shopping  and supporting a wonderful cause?!  These would make great Christmas gifts and stocking stuffers!  Learn more about the products and find links below.  Make sure you scroll all the way down to see some fitness products too.

Pink Products

 1. essie Breast Cancer Awareness Mini Four Pack Nail Polish Set.

2. Stella & Dot Inspire Bracelet: 100% of the net proceeds through October benefit the Noreen Fraser Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds for women’s cancers.  Such a beautiful and feminine bracelet.  I love the rose gold detail.

3. DKNY Be Delicious Fresh Blossom Perfume Collection: The company is donating $15,000 of the proceeds of this product to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

4. Smashbox Be Legendary Lip Gloss: $5.00 from your purchase of this product will be donated to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  This is also a limited edition shade.

5. Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer: $5.00 from your purchase of this product will be donated to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

6. EOS Limited Edition Breast Cancer Awareness Collection Lip Balm & Lotion 3-Pack: A portion of the proceeds will benefit breast cancer research.

7. JustFab’s Bon Bon Clutch in BC Pink: 100% of the proceeds will benefit the Susan G. Komen foundation for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  This clutch is adorable!  It comes with a chain strap so you can also wear it over your shoulder.  The inside is lined with a cute stripped fabric.

Pink Fitness Products

1. Under Armour Go Fight Cure Long Sleeve Tee: This tee can be found at Macy’s.  They are currently offering 20% off if you donate $5.00 towards breast cancer awareness, research and education.

2. Yurbuds Women’s Inspire Earbuds: Found at Dick’s Sporting Goods who has donated $250,000 to The National Breast Cancer Foundation.  (the link goes to the blue earbuds, but you can select the pink ones from this page).

3. Fitbit Flex Wireless Activity & Sleep Wristband: Found at Dick’s Sporting Goods who has donated $250,000 to The National Breast Cancer Foundation.

4. Nike Breast Cancer Awareness Wristbands: Found at Dick’s Sporting Goods who has donated $250,000 to The National Breast Cancer Foundation.

5. Under Armour Women’s Power In Pink Great Escape Shorts II:  Under Armour’s Power In Pink is donating $10 Million to Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center to benefit breast health.  Can also be found at Dick’s Sporting Goods.

6. New Balance Pink Ribbon 1765 Fitness Walkers: Through December 31, 2014, New Balance will contribute 5% of the MSRP of each product from their Lace Up for the Cure Collection to Susan G Komen with a minimum of $500,000 in 2014.

Go, Fight, Cure!

Signature - Alisa

 

Oct 1 2014

The Honest Company-My Honest Opinion

Since becoming a mom a lot of things in my life have changed: more laundry, more stuff, more crying (not just the baby), more laundry, and less sleep to name a few.  I have also made some changes to our lifestyle to fit our growing family’s needs.  I started to become more aware of all the harmful things that my baby could come in contact with (I should have been aware before I had a little one, but there’s nothing like seeing your heart walking around to get you to notice those kinds of things).  And many of those harmful things were cleaning supplies I was using in my own home! I decided I didn’t want to clean my house with anymore harsh chemicals, so I set out to find an alternative.

Luckily I found the Honest Company!  It was started by Jessica Alba and Christopher Gavigan.  All of their products are non toxic.  This summer, Jessica’s book, The Honest Life, was on my summer reading list.  It is a fun read and it is a great resource.  I learned so much, but most importantly was to not go overboard, but to just make small changes where I can to live a healthier lifestyle.

The Honest Life

I have tried to do just that.   Sometimes I go all in and get overwhelmed and can’t keep it up, so I decided to take baby steps to create real change.  I started with the Diaper bundle (includes wipes) from the Honest Company because my little guy was having lots of diaper rashes using other brands of diapers. I didn’t even realize all the harsh chemicals that can be found in diapers. Once I switched his diaper rashes cleared up and were a whole lot less frequent.  From there I tried their cleaning supplies little by little.  Along with my diaper bundle I get their essentials bundle (which comes with 5 items such as cleaning supplies, of your choosing as often as you’d like-you can set the shipment schedule!)  Isn’t that great?  It’s great to get diapers and cleaning supplies delivered right to my door and it’s free shipping on orders of $50 or more or if you order 2 bundles.  If you want to try out their products you can get samples sent to you, first.

The other great thing about the Honest Company is that they have amazing customer service, one of the best I’ve ever seen!  Whenever I call, the person on the other line is so friendly and willing to help.  One time I received a soap container that had spilled a little and they shipped me a new one right away.  They also have promotions every once in awhile that you can take advantage of if you follow Honest on Instagram and Facebook.  I also love that as a company they give back to the community.

By now I have used many of their products and wanted to give you all a review of what I have loved and what has not worked as well for us.

honest company cleaning supplies

Cleaning Products I love:

-multi-surface cleaner- I use it on everything and love it!!!!

-glass + window cleaner-smells like vinegar until it dries in case you dislike the smell of vinegar (I like the smell!)

-dish soap-I love the different scents.  They smell so fresh and clean!  I use this everyday to wash dishes.

-hand soap

-auto dish washer gel

-rinse aid

-dish towel- a bit on the small side but works for us

-fruit + veggie wash

-laundry detergent-a must with my boys’ sensitive skin!

-stain remover- I am very pleased at how well this gets out stains!

-toilet cleaner-this is awesome!

diapers

Baby Products I love:

-diapers-love all the cute patterns they offer and they are always coming out with new ones!

-wipes

-diaper rash cream

-shampoo and body wash-I use this on my son for his baths and love it.

Products that haven’t worked well for our family:

-sunscreen- it worked good but, it was too greasy for me.  They have new sunscreen spray that I haven’t tried yet.

If you are interested in purchasing from Honest I would love it if you would do so through my link.  For referrals I can earn a $20 credit on my account and you can too if you become a member!  Another great perk!  Thanks so much!

I hope this has helped if you’ve been thinking of trying out the Honest Company or had been looking to swtich to non toxic cleaning supplies or baby items.  If you have any questions don’t hesitate to email me at allingoodtwine at gmail dot com.

*this post was not sponsored by the Honest Company.  As always all opinions are my own.

Signature - Marissa

Sep 10 2014

Tailored Fitness and a Giveaway!

Hi Friends!

I have never been one to workout consistently.  In the past I’ve tried jogging, gym memberships, and dance classes; but nothing has ever stuck with me or been enjoyable…until I found Tailored Fitness.  I love it for so many reasons, one of which is that I don’t have to leave home to exercise.  If you are a mom or just a busy woman this is such a great workout option because you can do it right from home! With a two year old, leaving to go to the gym is just not an option for me at this point in my life.  (Let’s face it, even if I didn’t have a two year old I wouldn’t make it to the gym). Tailored Fitness provides customizable workout videos that you stream through your computer or tv.   You build your own workout pulling from videos from different categories (warm up, cardio, upper body strength, core, etc.)  New videos are always being added which makes the possibilities endless.  You are not having to do the same workout video day after day.  It keeps your workouts fresh and interesting.

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It’s also affordable.  Gym memberships and classes can be expensive. Tailored Fitness offers a free 14 day trial and then from there if you want to become a member it’s just $19 a month.  With the Tailored Fitness membership you are getting more than just the workout videos.  You can participate in virtual classes that have trainer designed workouts, nutrition tips, accountability, and support.  Not to mention you can earn points and prizes!  This has been so motivating for me!  They even have workouts for prenatal and postnatal fitness.  I also get emails asking how my workouts are going and if I have any questions or concerns. I always get a timely, thoughtful response.  You can also be a part of the Tailored Fitness private Facebook page to get further information, encouragement, and support.

Before joining Tailored Fitness I was exhausted and didn’t feel confident about my body.  Since joining Tailored Fitness I have gotten into a workout routine and I am actually enjoying working out!  I even look forward to it!  I have more energy and I feel better about myself.  And I just love the heart behind the company.  The co-owner and  co-founder, Autumn Bonner is an inspiring fitness trainer, business woman, wife, and mom.  You can read more about her here as well as how and why she started Tailored Fitness.  She has guest posted for All In Good Twine in the past and has shared some great tips.  Check out 5 Exercises You Can Do With Your Toddler or Rediscovering My Style As A Mom

exercise with toddler for pinterest

I also wanted to let you know that Tailored Fitness is offering their next class free to everyone!!  You don’t have to be a member to take part in their Fit Jeans Challenge starting September 15th.  It will include four 15 minute workouts per week (September 15- October 12), nutrition challenges with recipes, and of course encouraging support throughout the challenge!   If you are a member, you can get lots of extras with this challenge including four 30-45 minute workouts a week, additional nutrition challenges, and the ability to earn prizes!

jeans-for-diet-810x1024

Join me in the Fit Jeans Challenge!  Let’s do it together!  You can sign up here.

And today one of our awesome readers can win a 2 month free trial of Tailored Fitness!  Make sure to enter below by using Rafflecopter.  You can earn entries by liking All In Good Twine and Tailored Fitness on Facebook, and by leaving a comment.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Hope you all have a fabulous day!

*I was given a free trial period to Tailored Fitness to blog about my experience.  As always all opinions are my own.

Signature - Marissa

 

 

Jun 18 2014

Summer Essentials

Can you believe the official day of summer is just a few days away!  Though summer just isn’t the same as an adult, is it?!  But, I’m determined to find some time to relax, read and travel.  Today, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite summer essentials to share with you.  Can you tell I’m a bit obsessed with navy? :)

Summer Essentials

1. Maxi Skirt – I’m loving Maxi skirts lately.  They are so comfortable and light weight.  They also work great as a cover up by the pool.  I have just recently discovered that SteinMart has adorable summer skirts.  I usually would only look at their home décor section, but I have found some really cute clothes there lately!

2. Good Book – I love to read, especially in the summer.  There is just something so relaxing about getting caught up in a good book on a warm summer evening, or a lazy day by the pool.  One book that is on my summer reading list is Love Does by Bob Goff.  Not only have I heard amazing reviews, but he was also my Business Law Professor in college.  He was one of my absolute favorite teachers.  He made law interesting and exciting…if you can believe that!  I remember he would invite all of his students over to his house before a big exam to study and his wife, Sweet Maria, would have yummy snacks for us!  He has such a passion and love for God, life and everyone around him.  Read along with me!  If you haven’t already done so, be sure to check out Marissa’s summer reading list.

3. Sunglasses – My favorite are Fossil aviator sunglasses.  I’ll let you in on a little secret: buy them at a Fossil Outlet Store, they are a lot less expensive.  They hold up really well; I’ve had mine for over 4 years.

 4. Bathing Suite | Top Bottoms – I have the hardest time finding a bathing suit that fits well…anyone with me?!  I’ve worn the same one for years!  Then I saw a picture that my friend Christina posted on Instagram of an adorable bathing suit she got from H&M.  I checked their website and they have adorable bathing suites in several styles.

5. Sandals – I bought these in turquoise a couple years back and always get a tone of compliments.  I was excited to see that they are available this season again. I love this neutral color…I might just have to buy another pair!

6. Hat – I’ve never really worn hats at the pool until recently, but now I never go without one.  Not only are they cute, but it prevents my scalp from getting sunburned!

7. Sunscreen – Skin protection is a must, especially with fair skin like mine, but I hate greasy sunscreen.  So, when I stumbled upon Neutrogena’s Ultra Sheer Sunscreen I fell in love!  It is ultra sheer and has dry touch quality to it.  I use the lotion on my face and neck under my make-up and  I the body mist on the rest of my body.

8. Light Make-up –

  • Foundation: I wear BareMinerals for my every day make-up.  I love the light even coverage and my favorite part is that it has SPF 15.  I have really fair skin and since I have been wearing this make-up paired with the Neutrogena sunscreen, my face has not been sunburned and I only apply it once in the morning.
  • Lip-gloss: Neutrogena MoistureShine gloss is my favorite go to lip gloss.  Keeps your lips moisturized all year long.  I love the soft and subtle tint of the Natural Boost shade for Spring & Summer months and the Vita Plum shade for fall and winter.
  • Waterproof mascara: I like to have waterproof mascara on hand for those summer days when I’m at the pool.  That is the only time I wear waterproof mascara, because it can make your lashes dry and brittle. Removing waterproof mascara can also be hard on your lashes, which can cause them to fall out.  I want to keep all the lashes I have, thank you very much!

9. Beach tote – How cute is this tote from Forever 21!  I love a good tote to hold all my summer essentials and large enough to throw in a towel too!

10. Glass Water Bottle – Staying hydrated, especially during the hot summer months is really important.  I always carry a water bottle with me everywhere I go.  I have this same exact one and the best part about this one is that it is BPA, phthalates, PVC, lead and cadmium free.

Here’s to a great summer everyone!

*Affiliate Links Used

Signature - Alisa

Jun 16 2014

Mommy Monday: 5 Exercises You Can Do With Your Toddler- Guest Post

Hi Friends!

We are back with a Mommy Monday post and are so fortunate to have our friend Autumn from Tailored Fitness back to share some great ideas for working out with your toddler.

 


 

Hi everyone! Autumn here from Tailored Fitness. I am happy to be back here on All In Good Twine to help out with the Mommy Monday series.  Since my passion is fitness and setting a healthy example for my daughter, I want to share 5 exercises that you can do with your toddler.  They will keep your toddler laughing and you will work up a sweat and show them how fun exercise can be.

exercise with toddler for pinterest

 

1) Plank Tunnel – Get into a plank position either on your knees or toes.  Make sure your hands are directly under your shoulders and that you are a straight line from head to knees or head to toes. As you hold this position, encourage your toddler to crawl under you through the tunnel your body creates.

Plank Tunnel

 

2) Up/Down Push-ups – From the same plank position on either your knees or toes, perform a push up as you sing this little song to the tune of The Farmer in the dell. Your toddler will learn about up and down and they may even try some “push-ups” of their own.

When you’re up your up (hold the upper part of your push up)

When you’re down your down (lower to the bottom of your push up)

And when you’re only half way up (hold half way)

You’re neither up (press to top of push up)

Or down (lower to bottom of push up)

push up song

 

3) In/Out squat hops – Start with your feet together (in) and lower into a squat, then jump your feet to a wide squat (out) and repeat.  As you do this, say the words “in” and “out” and encourage your toddler to try moving their feet in and out as well.

in out squat hops

 

4) Slow/Fast Run – With feet shoulder width apart, moved your feet and arms as you run in place.  Then alternate your speed between slow and fast, saying the words as you do.  If your toddler is anything like mine, they will crack up laughing when you go fast.

slow-fast run

 

5) Tickle Crunch – Lay on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Let your toddler sit on your stomach.  Start into some basic crunches and each time you crunch up tickle your little ones tummy.

tickle crunch

 

So there you go! 5 simple exercises you can do with your todder. Here’s an easy way to combine them. Put on some music and set a timer for 1 minute intervals. (The gymboss app works great.) Do each exercise for 1 minute and repeat the whole series 3 times for a 15 minute workout.

Now given that you are exercising with a toddler, your workout will likely not go as planned.  Diaper changes, melt downs, or snack time may interrupt, but don’t be discouraged. The goal is just to get moving and have some fun with your little ones. So just pick back up where you left off when the interruption is over. Hopefully by the end your toddler will look like this….totally worn out!

Worn out

 

Here a few more resources for ways to get active with your kids:

  • If you have older kids: Check out our Fit Family board on Pinterest for more ideas
  • If you love your baby carrier: Give these Ergobaby workouts a try to tackle your tummy, butt, and arms.
  • It your baby is 3-9 months old: Try our 5 minute Postnatal Core Video you can do with your baby (open link with Chome or Safari)

If you try any of these activities out, I’d love to see. Snap a photo and send it to me on Facebook or Instagram (@mytailoredfitness).  If you ever have questions about exercise or want to give Tailored Fitness a try (free 14 day trial) just drop me an email. Hope you have a happy and healthy week!


Love, love, love all of Autumn’s ideas for exercising with kiddos!  I can’t wait to try them with my little guy!  Make sure to follow Autumn on facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.  She’s got great ideas on how to stay healthy and fit!

Signature - Marissa

May 8 2014

DIY Rosemary Lavender Bath Salts- MOPS Craft

Hi Everyone!

I’m back with another MOPS craft!  Yesterday we had spa day at MOPS.  It was wonderful!  We had a bunch of different stations that the moms could go to to pamper themselves.  What a treat!  The stations included brow waxing, facials, jamberry nails, sweets and treats, a foot soak, DIY bath salts, and a 5 minute massage station.  It was so lovely!

I was in charge of the DIY bath salts and I have some great tips on how to do this with a large group.  You could have your own spa day with your group of girlfriends!

DIY Bath Salts

I used the tutorial from Living Locurto but tweaked it to fit the size jars I had to work with.  With my husband’s help (he’s way better at math than I am) we came up with this recipe:

1/3 cups Epsom Salt

2 tablespoons Baking Soda

1 teaspoon sprigs fresh rosemary

1-2 drops of lavender essential oil (I used Do Terra).

The Epsom salt and Baking Soda I got from Target and the rosemary I cut from my yard.

rosemary lavender bath salts supplies

Instructions:

1.  Measure out and pour into your jar using a funnel: 1/3 cups Epsom Salt, 2 tablespoons Baking Soda; 1 teaspoon sprigs fresh rosemary and stir with a Popsicle stick.

2.  Add 1-2 drops of lavender essential oil.   Stir well so you don’t get little clumps.

3.  Choose a piece of fabric and place on top of your jar.  Use a rubber band and wrap around the top to secure it on.

4.  Take a tag and create a label for your bath salts: Rosemary Lavender Bath Salts

5.  Take a piece of precut twine, wrap around the jar, through the tag and tie a bow

6.  When ready to use pour some of your Rosemary Lavender bath salts into warm bath water and Enjoy!

A great money saver on this project was to use baby food jars (soaked to get the label off and washed).  The taller jars work the best.  For smaller jars you may need to use a bit less than the recipe calls for to fit in the jars.

Tips for doing this with a large group:

* Have instructions printed and put them in frames so they don’t get lost.

rosemary lavender bath salts instructions

*Prep before hand- chop rosemary, cut fabric circles, punch tags, cut twine.

rosemary lavender bath salts 3

 

rosemary lavender bath salts 2

*Do a sample so that you know it works and people can see the finished product.

*I grouped supplies at the table- one section for pouring and mixing ingredients and one section for packaging the jar with the fabric and twine.

rosemary lavender bath salts 4

 

rosemary lavender bath salts 5

*Have funnels for people to use.  It is hard to get the ingredients in without spilling if the mouth of your jar isn’t very wide.

*I had the ladies use Popsicle sticks to stir their bath salts.  This worked well since I had them on hand, we didn’t dirty a bunch of spoons, and the mouth of the jar wasn’t very wide so they fit.

This would be a great Mother’s Day gift or Teacher Appreciation gift!

Have a great day!

Signature - Marissa

Jan 17 2014

Healthy Substitutions: Small Steps to Healthier Eating

Let me start out by saying that I am no health expert by any means!  But, I want to share some easy food substitutions that are a little healthier and don’t sacrifice taste.  My husband is definitely the more health conscious one out of the two of us.  Over the years he has brought me over to the healthier side (on occasion I pull him over to the dark side to fulfill my junk food cravings!).  This year as I am setting my goals and making new year’s resolutions, I am choosing to be more conscious about what I eat.  Let me be honest:  I don’t think I can completely cut out carbs or my fast food runs, but I’ll work on making small changes where it counts.  If you cut out every unhealthy thing in your diet right away, I think you are less likely to maintain those good habits.  What I am sharing with you today is baby steps towards the right direction!  It’s all about eating things in moderation and keeping an active lifestyle.

Here are a few healthy alternatives that taste great and will help start you on your path to healthier eating.  I know a lot of these may be obvious, but take the challenge with me to make the change!  I actually prefer the healthier alternatives, not just because they are good for you, but I like the taste better!

Healthy Substitutions

Check out some of my recipes that use the above substitutions: like my Chicken Salad served on apple slices versus crackers.

IMG_0669

My Chicken & Veggie Naan Flatbread Sandwich where I substitute mayonnaise for hummus and use light balsamic vinaigrette dressing.

Chicken & Veggie Naan

Do you have any healthy substitutions or recipes?   I’d love to hear them!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Signature - Alisa

Jan 13 2014

Rediscovering my style as a mom (Guest Blogger Autumn Bonner)

 

Hello Everyone!  We are so excited to have Autumn Bonner from Tailored Fitness here today to share how she has rediscovered her style after becoming a mom.  Regardless if you are a mom or not, she has some awesome tips and a great list of essentials for your wardrobe.  


 

Hi Ladies! I am so honored to get to share on Marissa and Alisa’s fabulous blog. I have been following the blog for some time now and have been pinning away their posts for my next crafting session.  Marissa and I were in the elementary education program together at Point Loma and we reconnected a few months ago when I spoke at the moms group at her church.  As life would have it, neither of us are actually teaching anymore, but we both have the joy of being moms and sharing our passions online!

My passion lies in the area of health and fitness. I was fortunate enough to grow up in an active family where my mom taught me the value of exercise and eating healthy. It was such a gift for me as a child and I am now striving to help other moms learn to live healthy so that they can bless their children in the same way. My company, Tailored Fitness, allows you to create a custom workout that you can stream to your computer, tv, or ipad and squeeze in at home during nap time or while your kids play nearby. We also have a fabulous community of women that all support each other as we strive to find health and balance in the midst of motherhood. If you are interested in learning more, you can visit our website to sign up for a free trial, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Pinterest. Today I am going to share a little bit about how I re-discovered my style as a mom. Hope you enjoy it!

It’s no secret that having a baby changes everything! One of the most obvious changes is of course your body and what you wear. Here was my experience:

  • First I had to figure out what to wear during the first few months of pregnancy when I didn’t really look pregnant yet, just like I had eaten a big lunch.
  • Then I had to figure out how to “style the bump” during those last few months of pregnancy.
  • After I had Sienna, I pretty much lived in yoga pants and sweatshirts for a month or two as I adjusted to being a new mom and worked on getting something that resembled my pre-baby body back.
  • Then I went through an awkward phase where my maternity clothes were too big, but my regular clothes were too small.  I bought a couple things to tide me over, but I really didn’t want to get comfortable at that size.  If you read my journey to post-baby best posts know that it took 10 months of hard work to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight where I really felt like my clothes were fitting again.
  • To add to the complications, I was nursing, so every top had to have easy access for feeding time.
  • Plus, as a stay at home mom, my clothing needs weren’t the same as when I was working, since I wasn’t exactly sporting my pencil skirt and heels around the house.

I have always enjoyed fashion and trying to find my style. I even got to meet with a fashion consultant a few years back for an experience similar to “What not to Wear”, which was amazing!  But for the past 2 years while I was pregnant and nursing, I really had a hard time figuring out what to wear.  I’m not into brand names or trends, I just want clothes that make me feel put together, but are practical for my everyday life as a mom.  For my birthday this year, I received some spending money and I decided to put it towards building my new “mom wardrobe.”  I did a little research before hand and looked at a few fashion blogs for inspiration.  I even started a Pinterest board! Then I headed to the mall for some shopping (kid free thanks to my awesome hubby).  I found some great pieces that I have been mixing and matching over the past month and I finally feel like I have clothes are a good fit for my new mom lifestyle!

I know from talking to friends, that I am definitely not alone in the struggle to figure out what to wear as a mom to look cute, but be able to run around the playground, and not worry if your pants get covered in your baby’s snack food.  So I thought I would take a moment to share what I have found and maybe it will help some of you who are going through the same phase of life!  (By the way, I would totally wear all of these outfits if I didn’t have kids too, so they are great ideas for anyone looking to build their casual wardrobe.)  Here are some of the key pieces that have become staples in my “mom wardrobe” and how I mix and match them to make outfits!

Leggings

I probably love leggings so much because they are just like workout clothes (which are my all time favorite clothes to wear), but lately I have been seeing leggings everywhere!  I loved the idea, but had trouble finding tops that were long enough to wear with them.  My friend Kyle introduced me to the blog Pinterest told me to and right about the time I started reading it, she did an entire post about how to style leggings. If you have time, you should read it, she is hilarious and gives a ton of great ideas!

So to start, I ordered a good pair of leggings! I had other leggings in my drawer, but they were either too see-through or I ended up pulling them up all day because the elastic had worn out. This pair I ordered from Nordstrom have been fabulous! They even help smooth out the muffin top area to minimize bumps. Now, what to wear with leggings:  I had 2 dresses in my closet that worked, but they were both a little fancy and I wanted something more casual. I ended up getting this tunic and this shirt from Nordstrom, both of which have worked great!

A quick note on Nordstrom.  Before meeting with the fashion consultant a few years back, I had never set foot in Nordstrom. I just thought that everything at Nordstrom was expensive and I figured there was nothing there I could afford. I was totally wrong and now Nordstrom has become one of the places I shop regularly. Especially because I can shop online with free shipping and they have a great return policy. Shopping with Sienna is challenging, so being able to look through things online instead is so much better.  The other reason I love Nodrstrom is because they do alterations, sometimes for free. When you are only 5’4 like me, every pair of pants you buy needs to be shortened. Nordstrom will usually hem them for you for free. I also almost always need the waist taken in.  Part of being a pear shape is that you need a bigger size for your thighs, but then the waist ends up being too big.  Nordstrom does charge for this alternation, but it is well worth it to have a pair of pants that fit you well.

So here are two of my legging outfits I wear regularly!

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Boots

Another thing I wear all the time as a mom is my boots (as seen above).  Tall boots are so practical for a mom because they are comfortable (no heels), yet stylish. I always feel dressier wearing boots, but I can run around with Sienna no problem or walk a good distance without getting blisters.  I pair them with leggings and skinny jeans and in the spring and early fall when it’s warmer, I wear them with dresses.  These exact boots were ones that I got several years ago when I met with the fashion consultant. My jaw dropped to the floor when I saw the price tag on them and I almost didn’t get them, but she convinced me that they would be worth it and she was right. I am totally ok with having fewer quality pieces in my clothes than lots more clothes that are less expensive. There really is a value to a quality piece.  If you don’t have a pair of flat boots in your closet, I would definitely recommend checking out the sales and picking some up!

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Scarves

Have you ever noticed how celebrities are always wearing scarves?  They know that this simple accessory can make an ordinary outfit look great.  Take a pair of jeans and a t-shirt, then throw on a scarf and you instantly look fashionable.  For moms, scarves can serve an alternate purpose of covering unexpected food stains or even nursing leaks :).  My favorite kinds of scarves are the light weight cotton ones. Now I know those of you who live where you actually have winter use scarves to stay warm, but since us San Diego ladies use them as an accessory, we can stick to the light weight kind.  They lay flat and don’t feel too bulky so you can wear them all day. Infinity scarves are my new obsession. My friend Jessica bought me the one in the picture below for my birthday this year and I love it! It makes me want to sew the ends of my other scarves together to make them all infinity scarves.  Scarves are a great compliment for boots and leggings and the best part is that they are cheap!  I have my eye on this one from Nordstrom.  If you choose a non-infinity scarf, there are tons of ways to tie it.  You may have seen this video that shows 25 ways to tie a scarf in 4 minute.  Awesome right? Overall, scarves are a great cheap way to dress up an outfit and are definitely practical for life as a mom.

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Jeans

No surprise here, jeans are a staple for every mom!  My favorites are skinny jeans because they allow me to wear them either with flats or boots.  Side note, the leopard print flats I am wearing in the picture below are actually crocs!  They are SO comfortable! I originally bought them for our trip to Egypt and Israel a couple years ago and I have been so pleased with them! Crocs have come out with some really cute styles lately.  Ok, back to jeans, I am really enjoying these distressed jeans I got from Nordstrom because they are so casual and work well with a lot of tops.  I also love these dark skinny jeans because they have a ton of stretch (almost as much as my yoga pants), which makes them great for playing on the floor with Sienna.

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Corduroy pants

Another super comfy option for pants are corduroys.  I found this pair at the LOFT, another one of my new favorite stores.  They are just as stretchy as the jeans and a little warmer. Since they are skinny too, they work with flats or boots. I see myself getting a lot of wear out of these and maybe even picking them up in another color for spring.

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Well, I don’t claim to be a fashion expert, but I hope you have enjoyed this post and come away with a few fun ideas for your wardrobe.   For more ideas, follow my Pinterest board and if you are interested in exercise and recipe ideas, you can follow my blog here. Have a great week ladies!

 

Nov 25 2013

How To Clean Your Make-Up Brushes

Today I have something a little different to share with you.  It may not be the most glamorous post, but I discovered it is so important to clean your make-up brushes regularly.  First and foremost, brushes collect bacteria, especially if you break out a lot.  When you use the brush over and over without cleaning, you are just spreading the bacteria around.  Lastly, brushes are expensive and you want to make sure you take good care of them to get the most use out of them.

I know there are suggestions on Pinterest on how to clean your brushes, but I have found that the process I use has worked great for me.

Here is what you will need:

  • Dirty make-up brushes (check!)
  • Shallow glass bowl
  • Water
  • Washcloth
  • Johnson’s Baby Shampoo.  (Of course you can use shampoo specially made for brushes, but Johnson’s works great & is WAY less expensive than make-up brush shampoo that you find at beauty stores)
  • Optional: Johnson’s Baby Hair Conditioner (I didn’t have any on hand, but would help soften your brushes)

Brushes 1

 

Step 1: Add a pea size drop of shampoo to your glass bowl.  Add lukewarm water just so that it will cover half of your brush bristles.

Step 2: Swirl your brush into the water for several seconds.  Be sure not to get the metal part of your brush wet, otherwise you may risk loosening the glue that holds in the bristles.  I like to gently press the bristles against the edge of the glass bowl.  This helps loosen the make-up caught up in the bristles.  Do not soak your brushes!

Brushes 2

 

Step 3: When the water gets cloudy with make-up, pour out the water and run your bristles under lukewarm water.  Again, be sure not to get the metal part of your brush wet.

Brushes 3

Step 4: Repeat steps 1 through 3 until the water remains mostly clear when you swirl your brush (may take several repeats of 1-3), adding a small drop of conditioner to the water the last go around.  Be patient and turn on some music in the background!  It can be a lengthy process especially depending on how many make-up brushes you have,  but SO worth it in the end.  You will have clean brushes and fewer breakouts!

Brushes 4

Step 5: Take a small drop of shampoo on your finger and rub it over the brush handle (the black part seen in the photo below) to clean.

Step 6: Carefully wring out your brush by squeezing the brush though your pointer & middle finger.  Pat dry, reshape your bristles and layout on a washcloth overnight.  I turn over the brush after a couple hours to a dry spot on the washcloth.

Brushes 5

I like to have several brushes that are used for the same purpose (4 for applying foundation, 2 for blush, 2 eye shadow, etc.).  This way I can switch to a new brush each week, or every other week  and clean all my brushes at the end of the month.  I don’t switch out my blush and eye shadow brush as often as I do my foundation/concealer brushes.

Do you have any tips to clean your make-up brushes?  Would love to hear!

Signature - Alisa