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Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Pumpkins & Plaid OOTD

Plaid Shirt: Costco (by Jach's Girlfriend), Black Skinnies: Belk (by Love Fire),  Flats: Steve Madden, Bag: Tory Burch, Sunglasses: Rayban, Bracelet: Alex and Ani Dove of Peace

This outfit is basically my fall uniform. I love these black skinnies that are basically like leggings because they're super comfortable and they go with everything. I was also really excited to find the plaid shirt I'm wearing at Costco because it's actually a plaid color combination that I like, is soft, thick AND it has snap buttons. Oh, AND it has cool cuffs. 

I love to wear flats on days that it starts out a little chilly and ends up in the low 70's and this pair is my go-to (and actually needs replacing soon!)

We haven't been to a proper pumpkin patch or fall festival yet, but I do like going to this local nursery during the fall to see what goodies they have out! I ended up getting a few small pumpkins to put around the house :)

What staples are your go-to for fall?

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Thursday, October 8, 2015

How to: Starbucks Party

Lifestyle post on how to throw a starbucks party

For my boyfriend's birthday this year I knew I wanted to do something a little different. We have birthday decorations that we re-use for our birthdays every year, which is fine with me, I just was feeling creative and wanted to do a theme. Obviously I went to Pinterest to try to find birthday party themes for men, but they were mostly alcohol related or themed from tv shows that we don't watch.

 When that search turned nothing up I started thinking about things that I know he really likes and that lead me to coffee! In the last year probably, he's been loving coffee and trying different types, syrups, etc. so that was what I based my theme on. It was originally going to just be coffee themed, but when I realized I needed a color scheme, I decided just to make it a Starbucks theme so that I could go with their set colors of black, white and green.

The pictures are a bit dark because I (with the generous help of a friend) set everything up while he was picking his mom up from the airport so these were taken around 9 pm aka very dark outside in February aka a blogger's worst nightmare for photos. There is so much more you can do (and more that I did but didn't actually photograph) but below you'll find lists of things I used as well as some tips & tricks!
Lifestyle post on how to throw a starbucks party with dessert bar

Lifestyle post with DIY ideas for Starbucks birthday party with dessert ideas

Decor items I bought:
- Pack of white coffee to-go cups that came with lids and sleeves
- Black plastic table cloths
- Birthday napkins/ plates
- Streamers/ balloons
-Black crepe paper pom poms
- Paper straws

Decor items I gathered:
- Sugars & Syrups
- Starbucks mugs
- Glass milk bottles
- Platters
- Random green items/ things I could wrap in brown paper for the "coffee shop" look
- Starbucks brochures

Lifestyle post on DIY and dessert ideas on how to throw a starbucks birthday party

DIY Starbucks Cups:

What You'll Need:
- White to-go coffee cups (I bought a pack that came with lids and sleeves)
- Sticky sheet labels for printing
- Starbucks logo image

- Use the logo of your choice and do a test run of printing it out on regular paper to make sure you have the sizing right in comparison to your cups
- Once you have a good image, simply print onto your labels
- Cut each logo out and stick onto the middle of each cup and sleeve

- Sheet labels aren't necessary, but it sure beats dealing with glue!
- I really only made these for decor, so I only printed and used enough logos for what would be visible

Lifestyle post on how to make cupcake frappuccinos for starbucks birthday party

Lifestyle post on how to make cupcake frappuccinos for starbucks birthday party

Lifestyle post on how to make cupcake frappuccinos for starbucks birthday party

Cupcake Frappuccinos

 What You'll Need:
Starbucks sample cups 
A few Starbucks or cute paper straws
Box cake mix (or homemade if you prefer; I didn't have time!)
Scissors to cut straws
2 cans of vanilla frosting with nozzle (or homemade frosting and pastry bag)
Toppings (I used chocolate syrup, caramel sauce and cocoa powder)
Eye dropper for sauces

- Lightly grease each sample cup. I just gave each one a couple spritzes of canola oil.
- Line the cups on a baking sheet
- Mix ingredients per your recipe or box mix
- Fill each cup about halfway with your batter
- Bake according to recipe/box (they will most likely take 10+ minutes longer than your instructions; mine took about 30 min to bake fully)
- Let them cool completely
- Frost each one in a circular motion so it looks like whipped cream
- Drizzle chocolate/caramel syrup and/or top with sprinkles and cocoa powder

- Ask your local Starbucks if you can have some of their sample cups; mine gave me a whole sleeve for free!
- Kitchen-exclusive eye droppers made drizzling the right amount of sauce onto each cupcake super easy

DIY Lifestyle blog post on how to create a chalkboard like starbucks menu

DIY Starbucks Menu

What You'll Need:
Black Foam Board
White Sharpie or White Chalkboard Pen

Look up an image of an actual Starbucks Menu and pick out a few drinks from each category to put on your board (depending on how large your board is)
Use your ruler to help get the spacing and lines right and simply keep going down the board with each category until you reach the end!

If you mess up anywhere the benefit of using a chalkboard pen is that it will erase somewhat if you dab it with a wet cloth. I then used a black marker over that area to blend it with the black board and wrote again over top with my chalkboard marker.

Lifestyle post on DIY ideas for a starbucks birthday party banner

Birthday Banner

What You'll Need:
-Blank & green banner pennants (I found mine at the Dollar Tree and it came with ribbon; they were teal on the other side but when I flipped them over they were the perfect black, green and white for the party!)
-Ribbon if yours doesn't come with it
-A hole punch if your pennants don't come with holes (mine did)
-Sticker letters (I used a silver glitter pack I found at Michaels)

-Arrange your banner on a table top or the floor to get the correct number of pennants. I also used a blank patterned one for in-between "Happy" and Birthday"
-Hole punch each end of pennants if you need to and string them
-Stick your letters to each pennant

Lifestyle post on DIY decor for a starbucks birthday party

I hope you guys enjoyed this post and found it helpful, even for other themed parties.

Let me know what you think!

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Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Why I Started Dry Brushing & How-to

The benefits of using a natural bristle brush and dry brushing

Beauty and Lifestyle review post about benefits of dry brushing

I heard about dry brushing a while ago but didn't think much of it at the time. It wasn't until I read a blog about it that I was intrigued and I decided to read more about it and buy a brush. 

So here's a few things to know about dry brushing:

1. It exfoliates dead skin.
This is probably the most basic benefit of all, however it is definitely a good thing to get rid of dead skin, tighten the skin and open pores to allow it to breathe.

2. It stimulates your lymphatic system.
The movements of the brush across your body will stimulate your lymphatic system, which when not working properly can allow waste and toxins to build up and make you sick. Stimulating the lymphatic system helps release these toxins.

3. Helps reduce cellulite.
Dry brushing can help to soften fat deposits and distribute them more evenly reducing the appearance of cellulite.

4. Increases circulation.
Dry brushing your skin helps to increase the blood flow to the skin, encouraging the release of waste. It is also thought of as an energy increaser because it increases circulation.

5. Relieves stress/ Invigorates
Can help calm your mind and relieve tension, especially when done in a quiet place. It becomes a regular part of people's routines because it feels so good and has even been compared to a light full body massage.


1. Purchase a natural (non-synthetic) bristle brush that has a long handle to make it easier to reach all areas of your body.

2. Begin brushing starting with the bottom of your feet and moving in long sweeping motions toward your heart. (Always brush toward your heart)

3. Brush several times in each area and overlap as you go. Brush lightly, but vigorously- if it hurts you're probably brushing too hard.

4. When brushing the stomach go in clockwise motions around.

5. Brush over your entire body, except your face, and finish with your chest and neck.

Beauty and Lifestyle review post dry brushing

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Monday, October 5, 2015

Becca Cosmetics: Champagne Pop Highlight!

Review of Becca Highlight in Champagne Pop Collaboration with Jaclyn Hill

Review of make up product Becca Cosmetics Highlight Powder in the color Champagne Pop Collaboration with Jaclyn Hill

Becca Cosmetics Highlight Powder in the color Champagne Pop applied on face

Cosmetic product Becca Cosmetics Champagne Pop Highlight Powder swatched on hand

Review of beauty product Becca Cosmetics Highlight Powder in the color Champagne Pop collaboration with Jaclyn Hill

Part of me feels like I don't even need to write a post on this highlight. I mean...did you see the pictures??

Anyway! As you know, this is the limited edition and ever-so-popular Champagne Pop highlight created through a collaboration with Jaclyn Hill and Becca Cosmetics. I've never been huge into highlighters because I have combo/oily skin and sometimes it's just too much. This particular highlight shade is just as the name says- a champagne color, so it's peachy with gold undertones, but still neutral so it looks good on pretty much every skin tone.

It is also very pigmented so it doesn't take a lot (which is good because it is a little pricey at around $40). I find that it gives a really pretty glow to the skin that I at least feel like is really nice for everyday since I'm under fluorescent lighting everyday and it's definitely not the most flattering lighting! Even with my combo/oily skin I still love it and I've literally worn it everyday since I got it! 

Do you guys have this highlight? What's your favorite?

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