Mommy’s little helper – the ultimate under-eye concealer!

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I’ve very loyal. I’m also very traditional. So breaking routine and trying new products — especially on my face — is a big deal for me! Enter ipsy.

If you don’t know ipsy, it’s a more budget-friendly version of Birchbox. For $10 a month, you get five beauty products to try, which are catered to your profile (ie: I get products appropriate for my fair skin).

I don’t love every product, but a few have become must-have essentials in my daily routine. My latest fav is this under-eye concealer by “it cosmetics.” The sample I received is “neutral medium” and is just perfect for my porcelain haven’t-slept-in-five-years complexion.

It’s a liquid in a tube that you warm between your fingers until it’s a tad more fluid. Then, you can use just a smidge on a Sunday or A WHOLE BOAT LOAD on a Monday morning (like I did an hour ago). You layer as needed and it never gets cakey. It also doesn’t budge all day. My little sample is .11 fl.oz. and I’ve barely put a dent in it over the past two months – so I’m guessing the full-size tube would last well beyond your normal concealer investment.

I don’t rave about products often, but this one is worth my blah blahs. I’m so fair my under-eye area is borderline blue on some days — even when well rested — so the fact that this makes me look like I just got back from a (kid-free) vacation is EPIC. I’ll spare you my Monday morning mom eyes, but some great before and after shots are on the product’s page. Check it out!

Salt you, sinuses!

sinusrinse

It’s that time of year again — when I walk slowly down the cold and allergy aisle at Target and reluctantly find the nasal rinse box. I’ve been here before, you see. But I despise the entire process. And avoid it at all costs — despite recommendations from my doctor, my allergist, my handsome hubby and even Dr. Oz!

The hubs likes to call me “train wreck,” but I prefer “a mess up, from the neck up” as my issues are fairly localized between nasty allergies and unpredictable migraines. And they land me back in this exact spot almost annually.

This winter has been especially brutal. Our weather in Charlotte has been fluctuating almost weekly, which makes my sinuses inflame to the point of inducing a migraine. “Normal” people would pop some Ibuprofen or Aleve and move on with their lives, but I’m allergic to the entire NSAID family (more on that another time). I have a great migraine prescription that knocks them out for most of the day, but with only nine pills allowed each month, I’ve begun looking for alternatives. Again. So I’m back buying a saline nasal rinse. Again.

Nasal rinses come in many forms — from this simple plastic bottle to a blue neti pot to a pulsating water-shooting device. I’ve tried the first two, and much prefer the bottle to the neti pot, which makes me picture a genie magically appearing inside my nose (RIP Robin Williams).

The process isn’t hard. You add warm water and one packet of the nasal rinse salt stuff, which dissolves immediately. You jam the device into one nostril, squeeze or pour, and wait for the solution to come out the other nostril. This cleans your sinuses (and causes some really attractive coughing, drooling, choking, etc. – if you’re me). Lean. Over. Your. Sink. 

Each year, I try it — feel better for a few days — and then toss the little bottle aside. It’s not pleasant. It’s messy. And I dread it every day. I enjoy tossing the little bottle aside. But this year — things will be different! I will continue the rinse cycle for all 50 packets that came with it. I WILL. I’ll keep my little headache log and let you all know if it’s worth the whole ordeal or not. Let’s hope it is!!!

Latest update: purchased at noon. Used at 1 p.m. — haven’t had a headache since, which is monumental as I’ve had one almost non-stop since Thursday night. Happy New Year to me.

Big big booty (sale), you’ve got a big booty…

sperry

If you’re like me, you’ve fought the booty trend for the past year or so and have failed to take the leap. I mean, they just look funny. It’s like someone took a riding boot and hacked it off at the ankles. Ick.

However, in my attempt to be more open-minded and continue to invest wisely in my professional wardrobe, I think this is the pair that will have me taking the just-above-ankle-high plunge. What I like about them is that they resemble traditional boots in shape, but are definitely still a booty. They’re like a transition boot for naysayers like me.

I’ve visited this pair online for the past five days and it has slowly grown on me. I trust the brand (Sperry). I like that they aren’t synthetic. I like that they’d be cute with leggings at work or with jeans at home (if I ever get out of pjs on the weekend). They’re $89.90 shipped from Nordstrom, which beats Sperry’s own price of $99.99.

I found this deal on my daily email from bradsdeals.com, which I highly recommend to any bargain shoppers. I’ve seen top brands, such as Ugg and FitBit, highly discounted and 100-percent genuine.

For those of you hoping for deals for your kiddos, keep checking back as I countdown to Gymboree’s January Gymbucks redemption. If you’re a rewards member, you get early bird access on January 14. If not, January 15 is your day. What are Gymbucks? Look for a future post or comment here and I’ll explain. They’ve fully clothed my children for the past five years — without breaking my less-than-$10-per-item rule! 🙂

So what’s the point?

A little over five years ago, fate dealt me a lucky hand. I started a new job, which I enjoyed, but the lucky part was the friendships I forged with my new coworkers – who I loved. One in particular, Barb, and I shared very similar interests and have remained close as our lives changed dramatically in the years that followed.

At our cores, we’ve both sought to surround ourselves with what makes us happy and eliminate what doesn’t. This has led us to find rewarding work as freelancers, to reinvest some of those earnings in exceptional online deals and — above all else — to expand our families.

We launched this blog in May of 2013 with the best of intentions, but, life got in the way. Now, nearly 1.5 years later, we’re finally taking it live! We aren’t setting out with any real agenda, just to share relevant portions of our lives with those who might be interested. We hope you’ll enjoy this journey with us as we try to stick to our main themes — but most likely go off script on many occasions.