Thursday, September 22, 2016

Project: Recipe Clean Out

I stopped counting the printed recipes stuffed into the front pocket when I got to 98.  At that point I realized I could just say, "There are over 100."

Does anyone else have a binder with 5,362 recipes in it?  That's an exaggeration of course, but it really is a nearly overwhelming amount!  This binder is one of the reasons I started blogging – to keep track of things.  I tear recipe after recipe out of magazine after magazine with the full intention of making every single one, but of course, in reality I only test out one here and there and often return to family favorite recipes instead.

This binder is the compilation of years’ worth of recipe tear-outs.  When I first started this binder I was very organized in regards to Breakfast, Sides, Desserts, etc.  I also used to be very good about checking to see if a recipe was available online and could be saved to that sites “recipe box” before stuffing yet another page into the binder.  “Used to” being the key words here.  Now, (and for quite some time), I rip out a recipe telling myself that I’ll check the magazine’s website later, but of course later never comes and the binder disaster you see pictured above is the result.

The organized pages - Pasta
The organized pages - Breakfast

So… let “Project Recipe Clean Out” begin!  Recipes that I’m realistically just never going to make, like Mexican 16-Bean and Tomato Stew (no one else in my family would eat it), and Egg Foo Young (zero chance I'll make it better than the restaurant down the street), are going to get tossed into the recycle bin.  The other recipes I’m going to commit to making at least one a week.  Hopefully one from each category.  (Why not aim for an entire meal right?)  And I’m going to post about it regardless of whether it turns out or not because...

Between online recipe folders, my binder, and Pinterest, I have ended up with the same exact recipes in different places. (Hence the main reason for me needing to keep track.)  I often don’t discover this until after I prepare one and there’s a quizzical look from my husband followed by, “Haven’t you made this before?”  When the answer to that question is “Yes,” he inevitably asks, “Well why didn’t you write it down?”   When the answer to that question is, “No,” I get a squinty eyed doubting look and, “I think you did.  You just don’t remember.  We both know you don’t write anything down.”
Well dearest husband...  Now I shall.  :D

Monday, September 19, 2016

September Allure Beauty Box

Drumroll please!  This month's Allure Beauty Box contained...

I am weird about using coordinating products, so I was excited to see Pur-lisse Blue Lotus 4-in-1 Cleansing Milk after having received their Blue Lotus moisturizer in last month's box!

A mini Supergoop Shine On Lip Screen will be going directly into my purse for reapplication on the go.  As I mentioned in my earlier review, I'm not a fan of the tingling feeling but... I'm definitely not a fan of getting skin cancer either so in my bag it goes!

Yet another eye treatment.  Good gracious.  How fast does everyone else go through a tube of eye cream?  Even a mini one?  It takes me  Avene is a fantastic brand though so I have no choice but to quit using the eye cream in my cabinet and start using Eau Thermale Avene PhysioLift Eyes instead.  This one has retinol!

Lash primer is something that I use daily.  I have the world's shortest eyelashes and mascara needs every bit of help it can get to make them visible.  (True story:  When I was in high school I used to joke that newborn babies have longer lashes than I do.  Then I interned on the maternity ward at the local hospital for a pre-college med class and found out it was true...) Needless to say, Grande Primer is a welcome addition to my arsenal.

A nail polish that doesn't require a base or topcoat?  Sign me up! I received Orly Breathable Treatment + Color in "TLC".  This pale purple is more of a "Spring-y" shade in my opinion so I'll be waiting to test this one out.

Last but not least I have a mini fragrance rounding out my September Box.  Bulgari Omnia Coral is described as a "fruity-floral" that is "crazy sophisticated and elegant".  On first sniff this seems like a great summer scent that has a great balance of not too sweet fruity-ness and not too "grandmotherly" florals. 

Friday, September 16, 2016

Love It, Like It, or Lose It v.6

I finally used up enough of my previous LLL products and had room for some new ones in my daily routine!
Clairol Hair Food Dry Shampoo – “The lightweight hair refresher recipe absorbs excess oils and transforms oily hair into fresh hair.”

Thoughts:  Smells great – very fresh and fruity and the scent isn’t overpowering.  It helps with oily roots some but not as well as other dry shampoos I’ve tried.  This won’t be a purchase for me.

Marcelle BB Cream “Golden Glow” – “hydrates and calms skin, evens tone, controls shine, lightly masks imperfections, and, thanks to tiny flecks of light-reflecting pigments, infuses skin with a fresh-from the-yoga-studio radiance.”

Thoughts:  Not for fair skin.  As soon as I opened the tube I knew it was going to be too dark, but after reading some reviews saying it blended seamlessly into fair skin I decided to give it a try.  Nope, nope, nope.  The small amount I applied seemed to live up to the claims though so I will be passing this along to a light-medium complexioned friend.

Acure Coconut + Argan Oil Cleansing Towelettes – “Gently remove makeup, dirt, sweat, environmental toxins, and that mustard from the corner of your mouth. No splashy rinsing necessary.”

Thoughts:  These smell lovely and are non-irritating.  Not so great for makeup removal though.  I swabbed my forehead with a toner soaked cotton ball afterwards to check, and ended up using several to get rid of the remaining foundation. This definitely won’t be replacing my cleanser so I’ll be keeping these in my bag to freshen up after the gym instead.

Ole Henriksen Lemon Strip Flash Peel – “A one-step express peel powered by lactic, glycolic and fruit acids that go to work in three ways to exfoliate and resurface skin, while algae extract soothes and calms. This spa grade treatment increases cell turnover, brightens skin tone and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles for a smoother, younger looking complexion.”

Thoughts:  It resurfaces the skin alright!  Not a flake in sight I tell you.  I think it’s because it burns off the top layer of your skin.  Or at least it feels like it.  I was furiously fanning my face the first few minutes after application and was unable to leave it on the full 10 minutes.  Like I said, it works though!  Sensitive skin types should steer clear.

Benefit Browvo Conditioning Primer – “Worn alone BROWVO! conditions & smooths brows.  Worn as a primer it enhances & extends the wear of other brow products.  This conditioning formula contains keratin & soy proteins known to help brows look THICKER, HEALTHIER & FULLER.”

Thoughts:  I initially thought this product was going to be completely pointless.  Taking my brows into consideration, I was only sort of wrong.  I don’t have unruly brows, so on its own it is completely pointless for me. (Those with unruly brows may disagree.)  For use as a primer to other products I couldn’t have been more wrong.  This is great under brow gel!  It really helps the gel stick to my brow hairs so I use less product and take less time.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

So Choix September Samples

My September So Choix samples showed up in my mailbox yesterday!  This month I essentially chose my morning routine as my sample choices – a moisturizer, foundation, setting powder, and two complimenting colors of eye shadow.

In case you missed last month’s post and are wondering, So Choix is a “personal makeup counter” where instead of receiving random samples every month, you get to pick exactly what brands/products you want to try.  They allow you to order one sample at a time or to sign up for a subscription and receive 5 samples per month.

Here are my choices –
YSL Souffle D’eclat Finishing Veil “01”

Smashbox Camera Ready BB Water “Fair Light”

Dior Hydra Life Pro-Youth Sorbet Crème

YSL Couture Mono Eyeshadow “17 Dedale” and “3 Marceau”

If you’d like to learn more about So Choix you can check out their FAQsor if you’d like to sign-up I’d be much obliged if you did so through my referral link!  Happy sampling!

Friday, September 9, 2016

What I'm Reading: Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook

It’s no secret that I love cookbooks - antique and vintage cookbooks in particular.  The older the book and the more handwritten recipes on the inside cover the better!  I’ve amassed quite a collection of cookbooks, both old and new over the years, so shelf space (and husband) now require that I use a little more discretion when purchasing yet another.
The Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook caught my eye at the bookstore the other day.  Based on the title, I immediately assumed it contained recipes passed down through families from one generation to the next, and I was delighted when I realized that it was!  Grandma Hannah’s Blueberry Buckle?  Yes please!  The Ginger Squares Grandma Hannah learned to make from her grandma?  Major score! I have to say this is the next best thing to finding a vintage cookbook chock full of handwritten recipes at a resale shop or garage sale!

The decision to buy this cookbook was easy.  The decision of what recipe to make first though…  Not so easy.  The aforementioned Blueberry Buckle or the upcoming season appropriate Pumpkin Crunch Bars?  Or shall I allow summer one last hurrah and bake Strawberry Cupcakes or Shortcakes?

Decisions, decisions…



Saturday, September 3, 2016

What I'm Reading: Jilo

Jilo is the 4th book in the Witching Savannah Series by J.D Horn.  I first came across this series about a year ago while browsing titles in the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, and was sucked in completely within the first few chapters of the first book.  I was furious with myself when I realized months had gone by since the latest release and I’d somehow forgotten about it!

Jilo takes place prior the first book, The Line, and it could certainly be read as a prequel to the rest of the series.    When finished,  I may go back and at least reread the first book to see if I make any connections I missed the first time around.