Archives for January 2014

what i loved & where i’ve been: trends, sweet sunshine & child pageants

I was quite active this week on the world wide web, I think making up for the week before where I was miserably sick and barely able to keep my eyes open to do anything.  Also, there was just some GOOD stuff to check out, and I definitely feel more alive and connected and smart when I’m keeping up with articles and websites that I love.

So, as just as I share every week, here’s where I’ve been and what I loved…

How to de-pot your eyeshadows (A Glittery Life): After the major NYX swag bag I left with from IMATS, I now have a TON of eyeshadows to organize.  I hate clutter, and organization just makes my brain work that much better.  So, I was thrilled when my dear sweet amazing friend, Trisha, created a tutorial on her blog showing exactly how to do it.  She even added a video tutorial for those of us who learn better that way.  And while you’re over there, make sure you follow her blog and YouTube channel because she is amazing and has the sweetest heart ever.

Words can change your life:  I’ve been talking and sharing a lot about all the work I’m doing to change the way I think.  A friend sent me this short but incredibly inspiring video and I thought it fit perfectly with where I’ve been…

Sweet Sunshine Smoothie (withkendra): Every single day this week I haven been making and drinking this ahhh-mazing smoothie that my friend, Kendra, shared recently on her blog (a Robecks knockoff).  We both seem to have the same taste in nearly everything, so I’m not surprised that I ended up just as obsessed.  I actually made a few changes to the recipe, based on what we had on hand, and it was still just as amazing.  (In addition to Spirulina we also used a cup of kale, and instead of vanilla yogurt we used organic strawberry kefir yogurt.  I also added a tablespoon of chia seeds.)  You guys absolutely have HAVE to try this smoothie.  Also…you should totally follow Kendra’s blog & YouTube Channel.  Obviously.

A 10 Calorie Homemade Sprite (the skinny confidential): It’s no secret that I love soda, but thankfully I have FINALLY given up the addiction.  Well, I mean, I’ve at least replaced Diet Soda with my beloved Zevia.  However, those can get a little spendy, and it’s still not quite as natural as I’d like.  So, I was super excited when I saw this recipe!  I already have my grocery list all made out and I plan to be sipping sweet healthy Sprite all weekend long.

18 trends that are totally over (whowhatwear): I always love checking out lists like these just to see what the “experts” are saying.  However, I have to say, that I don’t normally choose my wardrobe and fashion choices based on what’s “in” or “out.”  Some things will always remain “me” no matter how uncool they may be to others (flowy pants, I die.).

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Where I’ve Been…

On the SheKnows Mommalogues this week we talked about:
~ The last time we cooked something from scratch. (scratch? huh?)
~ If we go to our High School Reunions… (I do, every day…)
~ What we like to most on our Girls Night Out
~ Child Beauty Pageants…Yay or Nay?

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 Where have you guys been & what have you loved this week?

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how to combat your skins redness: a giveaway

Giveaway Entries:
1) Subscribe to my YouTube Channel
2) Like this video (on YouTube)
3) Leave a comment sharing why you think you’d love this product (on YouTube)
4) Like BioScriptives on Facebook
5) Follow BioScriptives on Twitter

This is seriously the most incredible product to fight redness in your skin! It’s also been amazing as a primer before my foundation as well. You guys will love this!

And I’ll be giving away 4 full size products, so check my Instagram account a week from TONIGHT to see who won!!!

To see more products that BioScriptives has check out their website!

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the magic of night, the magic of new

There is something so magical about the nighttime for me.
I come alive at night, I find hope at night, I find purpose, inspiration, and meaning in life.

magicofnightwords

It’s as though every night is a new year for me.
Every night I think over my day and I reflect on what was good.
What wasn’t good.
Where I went wrong.
Where I went right.

I sit on the couch and I think over the choices that were made, the moments that were had, and I love it.
I look over at my husband fast asleep on the couch beside me, because even though he’s tired, he still…after 11 years…wants to be next to me as much as possible.

And then I think of those silly insignificant moments I showed frustration.
The things I got annoyed at that I know I’d truly end up missing if they someday stopped.

But somehow, the magic of night gives me hope.
I consider all that I have, all that I long for, all that I dream of…
and at night, I believe in all of it.

At night, I believe tomorrow will be different.
I’ll be better.
I’ll do better.
I’ll love better.
I’ll make healthier, wiser, more loving decisions both for myself and for others.

I believe all that, and I promise myself…tomorrow will be that much better.

But sometimes tomorrow isn’t all of that though.
Sometimes tomorrow brings more of what the day before had, only worse or harder.
I mess up bigger.
I repeat the same selfish mistakes.

But then night comes again, and it all comes back to me.
Reflection.
Hope.
Magic.

Or maybe it’s God.
Maybe in the busyness of the day, in the craziness of taking things into my own hands, I lose a bit of Gods power.
I miss out on His magical presence.

But at night…
when all is still and quiet and I’m still and alone…
I am overwhelmed in His presence…

And it’s magic.
It’s hope.
It’s God.
And it’s Good.

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shopping IMATS ~ lorac, nyx, hourglass, too faced, cover fx & more!

It’s time for a little bit of show & tell from all the beauty shopping that went down at L.A. IMATS the other weekend!  I went a little more crazy than normal and bought stuff I might not usually splurge on, but the massive discounts were sweetly calling my name…and my credit card.
(Which we pay off every month.  Ya know.  Just a little disclaimer. Dave Ramsey baby.)

Also, make sure you’re following me on IG, Facebook & Twitter because in the next couple weeks I am giving away a TON of NYX products from their new line!!! (links are right over there to the right in my sidebar!)

If any of these products stood out to you and you definitely don’t want to miss a review, leave a comment & let me know! Also, if you’ve tried any of this stuff, I wanna hear your thoughts!!!

xoxo

 

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struggling with doubt ~ the simple act of looking up

Struggling with Doubt ~ the simple act of looking up

It’s no secret that 2013 was a year of struggle for me, especially in the area of Faith & God.  I found myself questioning everything.  And I mean everything.

It got to the point where I wondered if I was even a Christian anymore, because how could a Christian have the kind of doubts I was struggling with?

Woman beach sunrise.

I spent many nights crying, either due to fear or exhaustion over it all, and just wishing I could go back to the simple place of “have faith & believe.”

Yet I had so many questions.  Big questions.  Hard questions.  Unanswerable questions.

Truthfully, and this may be hard for believers to hear, during all that I wasn’t even able to read my Bible.  I’d open it up and just stare at words that were familiar, yet seemed so distant as well.  I was afraid to read, afraid that what I’d understand from it wasn’t correct, and once again I’d be lost.
Even more so than I already was.

I was going in circles.
Painful confusing circles, where after a bit of time, I just needed to sit down from the motion sickness of it all.

And when I sat down and I quit trying to figure it all out, I simply looked up.

look up

And there it was.
The answer.

The toughest questions I had, were suddenly answered in the simplest act of just fixing my eyes above.

The beauty.
The wonder.
The majestic views this world has to wonder…
It can’t be explained away.

There is just something beautifully bigger than us that we will never really truly be able to understand from where we stand right now.

We can give ourselves a title based on our beliefs and studies: Christian, Evangelical, Conservative, Calvanists, Armenians…. but the truth is, we will never fully see the Big Picture until we are face to face with the Artist Himself.

And now?
I feel as though I’m finally on the other side.
I know what is true.
And what is left, I don’t need to try to make sense of right now.

He’s given me what I need to know in this moment, and it’s enough for me.

I’m simply choosing to look up.

 

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what i loved & where i’ve been: therapy, IMATS & the most amazing eyeliner ever

What I Loved…

ANT Therapy: I am forehead deep (is that a saying?) in working on my thought life, and it has been exactly that…work. But I know that things that matter don’t always come easy, and it has been worth it to make the changes. What’s even better is seeing the benefits that come with the change. I literally feel better. Calmer. Happier and feeling a bit of settled peace and trust. I know I have just barely scratched the surface, and I still have so so far to go, but this ANT Therapy that my friend Aurora shared with me has been so helpful. If you’ve never heard of it before, I highly suggest you check it out.

HoneyBee Philosophy: I spent last weekend at L.A. IMATS and had an incredible time. I think what made the event were the girls I got to know and was able to spend time with.  Melissa was one of those girls, and she is absolutely stunning.  The more and more I got to talking with her the more I realized that she is just as beautiful inside as she is on the outside. As a Sephora Makeup Artist, this girl knows her stuff, and can be trusted 100% when it comes to all things beauty. In addition to that, just by watching her videos you’ll immediately feel as though you just gained a best friend.

Christian Musician Podcast: Our good friend Scott, who is also a talented musician, created this resource geared towards Christians who are either musicians or have an interest in music.  We listened in this week and what we (Jimmy & I) really loved about it, was that it addresses biblically, some of the questions we often have about music, worship, and what defines Christian vs. Secular.  It was a good discussion, and I’m excited to see what other topics he will cover in the future!

Where I’ve Been..

Le Musings YouTube:
~ After A LOT of time, money and research…I have finally found the most amazing waterline eyeliner that has ever existed!

imats
{wearing it here!}

~ I also started a new Reading Rainbow series, and I kicked it off this week by sharing my Top 5 Most Influential Books to date.  Check out the list and be sure to leave a comment sharing your own favorites as well.  There is already a good amount of amazing recommendations, and my 2014 book list is growing by the minute!
~ Tomorrow I have a fun collab going up with one of my favorite YouTubers all about The Products We Can’t Live Without, so be sure you’re subscribed, that way you aren’t missing the new uploads!

SheKnows Mommalogues:
Choosing our kids names was not an easy task, but I share how we came up with baby names and what the meaning is behind them.
~ We also shared our Workout Playlists and the music that keeps us motivated to move! (I need suggestions always!)
They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and so us moms all shared what we eat and serve our family on any typical morning.  My answer just goes to show how undomestic l I truly am.
~ And then today, we’re really digging deep and sharing our biggest parenting regret.  Ugh.  So many to choose from!  Care to share yours so I’m not so alone?

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And if you’re not already…be sure to follow me on Twitter & Instagram ASAP because over there I’ll be doing some fun NYX giveaways, all from their new 2014 line!

Have a great weekend!!!
xoxo

 

 

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finding my purpose ~ celebrate how you were created

Finding My Purpose

It is amazing what taking some time off can do for someone who claims to be a writer.
It’s like going on a tropical vacation and coming back rested, tan and ready to…vacation some more.

Ha.

It’s true though!

But after taking some time off, I truly found myself so ready to be back to my blog, back to writing, back to my first love.
I have really been spending time praying, studying, seeking wisdom and advice from those nearest and dearest to me that I truly love and respect, and it was good.

I had questions presented to me that I had never truly pondered over before, and it was good.
It was tough, but it was necessary.
The tough moments usually are.
And I spent many late night hours writing a bunch of randomness that would never make sense to anyone but me, so that I could finally…at last…sort out my thoughts and goals and hopes and dreams.

And while all of that is still swirling around my world and my head and heart, I knew it was time to come back.

summerblog

And just as any well rested vacationer should do, I plan on easing back into it all.
Maybe 3 posts a week, 4 if I’m inspired… and that’s enough for me for now.

My purpose here though, remains the same, as the heart God’s always given me is the heart I always will have:
To create a place, where any person who longs to be known for who she truly is, flaws and all, can come to feel loved and less alone. And most importantly, feel celebrated regardless of what isn’t right or what may still need to be changed, because we are complicated and always changing, and we just want to love and be loved.

Yes, we can get deep and meaningful and angsty and emotional.
But also, we can also switch right from that to the lastest makeup we love or what the heck just happened on The REAL Housewifes of blah blah blah.

We’re complex. We have many places and spaces our hearts and mind travel, and I don’t feel a need to limit it to one niche.
Because there is fun to be had, meaning to be found, laughter to be experienced, and simplicity to be enjoyed in the little things of life.

We’re searching, learning, laughing…all while playing with makeup & skincare, and doing our best to find a balance to it all.

This is our place to go, whatever place you’re in or journey you’re on, where someone WILL get you.
Someone WILL accept you.
Someone WILL help you learn, will laugh with you, and will say the two little words you always longed to hear…

“Me too.”

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what i loved & where i’ve been: black belts, positivity & healthy hair

What I Loved:

*How to be a black belt/4 Steps to Accomplish Your Goals: When I saw on Facebook that my dear friend from way back when I first moved to Southern California, Mike Powers, had the opportunity to do a Tedx talk, I was so excited to hear what he had to share.  Years and years ago, he had been the voice of wisdom and comfort during a tough experience, and I’ve always truly appreciated his friendship.  Jimmy was also intrigued given that Jiu Jitsu is a big part of our life, as both Jimmy & Taylor have been going now for years, and continue to train at least 3 times a week.  Over the years of Jimmy’s training, I have had the pleasure of listening to him liken the lessons of Jiu Jitsu to our real life.  Listening to Mike, I realize that maybe Jimmy could give a Ted talk of his own one day.  Whether you have any interest or affiliation with the martial arts or not, Mikes talk is encouraging & incredibly inspirational, and in 15 minutes I can tell you that you’ll be that much more motivated to go after your goals and dreams!


*Glow of Grace: 
I’ve heard it said many many times that it can be hard to find genuine girls in the YouTube “beauty guru” world, and while I have experienced that firsthand a bit, I have to say I have been truly blessed to come across some of the sweetest ones out there.  They’re lovely, Godly, unaffected, and genuine in their care for others.  Rachel, of Glow of Grace, is most definitely one of those girls.  Not only do I love her heart for the Lord, but she has amazing makeup tutorials and the best beauty recommendations!  Her sweet genuine spirit will capture you, and I know you’ll all love her just as much as I do!

*Lies Women Believe & The Truths That Set Them Free:  I have spent this last month pouring over this book every night before I drift to sleep.  It’s one of those books that just settles your heart and mind, and allows your spirit to get right where it needs to be.  I’ve confessed that I’ve been one to battle negative and discouraging thoughts, a lot of which I think I learned and picked up from childhood.  It’s been a struggle to first acknowledge that they are, in fact, not truths after all…but even tougher to make the switch into reminding myself what is TRUE.  It’s a journey I’m on, and even though I’ve finished this book, I can tell you I will be referring to it quite often as I continue to learn and grow.  In fact, I pulled out a journal/notebook, and plan on spending time going through all that I highlighted and journaling through what I learned, so as to really drive it home.  I honestly believe this book needs to be read by EVERY woman I know, whether or not they think they have battles in their thought life.  It’s just THAT good.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Where I’ve Been:

*On the SheKnows Mommalogues this week I showed off my Shoe Collection, which I have to admit, “Collection” is quite the appropriate word.
~ We talked about whether or not our kids have their own computers…can you guess my answer???
~ There was also discussion about our favorite winter activities.  Um, I live in Southern California and it’s been in the 80’s-90’s this week, so I’m not too sure what winter activities are anymore. What’s the deal with the weather lately???
~ And finally, today, we’re talking about the things our husbands do to drive us crazy.  Please watch this and tell me I’m not alone!!!

*On my Le Musings of Moi YouTube Channel (where I’ll be posting 3x a week):
~ I shared my latest Health & Beauty Haul from Vitacost, which included a ton of new to me products that I’m already majorly loving.  If you’ve never shopped at Vitacost…oh man, you don’t even know what you’re missing out on!
~ I also filmed a Day in the Life where I unboxed (show & tell) all the surprise beauty packages that came in, as well as discussed the deeper things in life such as ANT Therapy & Wednesday tantrums.  It was quite the exciting day!
~ And todays video is a collab with my dear friend, Trisha from A Glittery Life, where we are sharing our Best of Hair for 2013.  And not only did I include the products that did major things for my hair, but I also included some tips & tricks to keeping your hair healthy!

*On Instagram, I’ve been posting Truth Quotes & Pictures once a day that have really been inspiring and speaking to me.  This quote definitely has to be one of my favorites for the week, especially in light of our #GetHealthyJanuary month.  We’ve not been perfect, but this quote keeps us going!

instapic

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

This weekend I’ll be emersing myself in the beauty/makeup world at IMATS with some of my most favorite YouTube friends, and while I have no idea what I’m in for, I’m definitely excited for all that I’m about to learn!

Have a blessed weekend guys!

xoxo

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disney on ice: creating traditions, memories & moments

I’ll be honest, there were many many days (and very long nights) when my babies were small that I was a little concerned about the job I had signed up for, being a mom the rest of my life.  But, I’ll also be honest that as those babies grow up and become less and less like babies, the more and more I want to cling to every single moment we have together, knowing I’d never trade this “job” for anything in the world.

One thing I have really tried to do as a parent is create traditions, memories & moments with each of my kids, that neither of us will ever forget.  I find what ignites joy in their heart, and I stop often to join them in the experience.

For Chloe, one of her greatest loves (to my hearts delight) is anything to do with the arts.  She’s a sucker for music, dancing & theatre; and there is nothing like watching her face light up when the magic of art dances before her eyes.

This is exactly why, every year, I take my sweet Chloe girl to see Disney on Ice. The beauty of ice skating and the fun of her favorite Disney characters and songs, has her telling me every single time that it’s the best night of her life.  And her pure delight makes it the best night of mine.

All that said, this is why I have chosen to partner with Feld Entertainment & Disney on Ice to share the news that it’s coming to San Diego!  If you have the opportunity, having been several years in a row, I highly recommend you take your family and go!  Make 2014 the year you start creating traditions, memories & moments!

{tickets were given to my family, however, the choice to write this post was mine!}

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DISNEY ON ICE PRESENTS ROCKIN’ EVER AFTER IS COMING TO SAN DIEGO, JANUARY 22-26, 2014

**Featuring the Ice Skating Debut of Merida from Disney•Pixar’s BRAVE**

disneyonice

WHAT:
Get ready to rock out with some of the most magical idols of all in Disney On Ice presents Rockin’ Ever After, an all-new live production coming to San Diego! A cast of world-class skaters brings your favorite moments from Disney•Pixar’s BRAVE, Tangled, The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast to life in a musical showcase that features the hottest tunes and talent from across the kingdom.

D33_20120906_01037-Edit

Jam to a Scottish jig as a group of royal contenders from the Academy Award-winning Disney•Pixar film, BRAVE, competes to win the heart of adventurous, sharp-shooting Merida, making her on-ice debut! Experience a show-stopping performance as Sebastian breaks out of his shell for one night only to make waves with Ariel. A chorus of harmless hooligans from Tangled unleashes musical mayhem when they get a visit from the sassy and spirited Rapunzel and her charming ally Flynn. And, get your feet moving as the Beast and his castle’s enchanted entourage take center stage in a spectacular show for Belle. It will be a rockin’ remix of royalty when Disney On Ice brings this superstar line-up to San Diego!

D33_Goofy solo

WHEN:
January 22 – 26, 2014
Wednesday, January 22nd 7:00 PM
Thursday, January 23rd 7:00 PM
Friday, January 24th 7:00 PM
Saturday, January 25th 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Sunday, January 26th 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM* & 7:00 PM
*Spanish performance

WHERE:
Valley View Casino Center
3500 Sports Arena Blvd., San Diego CA 92110

TICKETS:
Ticket price levels are $17, $25, $45 (VIP) and $65 (Front Row)

Special Opening Night discount tickets available for only $10 each (not valid on VIP/Front Row seating)

All seats are reserved; tickets are available for purchase online at Ticketmaster.com, charge by phone at 800-745-3000 or in-person at the Valley View Casino Center Box Office.

*Tickets may be subject to service charges, facility and handling fees.

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superfood smoothie recipe for even the pickiest kids (and parents)

Over the last few years my family has slowly made the change to go extra clean and healthy in our grocery purchases.  We only buy organic, and I read the ingredients on EVERYTHING.  If there isn’t a health benefit, it generally doesn’t go into the shopping cart.

That’s not to say that we don’t eat UNorganic or UNhealthy sometimes too.  But, when it comes to what we buy at the store, it’s rarely junk.  And Trader Joes, Whole Foods & Sprouts seem to be our go to stores.

On the flip side, Jimmy & I both despise cooking and so often times we’ll find ourselves at Rubios or Panera for some take out, because eating taking out is the closest thing we can afford to having a personal chef.

One day, one day…

All that said, our kids have sllllloooooowllllly become accustomed to eating things that aren’t the normal grocery store items.
For example, they love roasted seaweed, coconut ice cream is a treat, and green superfood smoothies are a daily MUST HAVE.

In fact, Taylor begs me to make them nearly every single day, and I do because it gives me such a peace of mind in that if they eat nothing else of substance the whole rest of the day, they will ingest all that they could possibly need in one single SUPERFOOD smoothie.

So for todays #GetHealthyJanuary post, I wanted to share our most made and loved recipe.  I first got the idea from one of my dear friends, Kendra, and am constantly making little tweaks here and there, but the basics always stay the same.

 

smoothie

1 cup Pineapple chunks (from Costco, because we go through so much!)
1/2 cup Mango chunks (also from Costco)
1/2 cup Orange Peach Mango Juice (Trader Joes) *any juice works, as we change it up!
1/2 cup plain or coconut water
1 cup Frozen Kale (We buy the organic bag from Costco and keep it in the freezer so its nice and cold.  Plus it lasts longer!)
1 teaspoon Spirulina powder
2 tablespoons Chia Seeds or Flaxseed (1 tablespoon for my kids)
2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar (1 tablespoon for my kids)
OPTIONAL VARIATIONS WE’VE ADDED: Protein powder, 1/2 banana, 1/2 apple

Recently I was talking with another friend who was struggling with her own very picky children, and she had no idea how to get them to eat healthy.  I gave her this magic recipe to try, and a few days later she texted me that it had been a GIANT SUCCESS!!!

If you happen to be like us, or our kids, and you struggle to get in all your “health” each day, try making this most delicious smoothie and watch the health benefits happen before your eyes!!!

Also, if you have a smoothie recipe you’re obsessed with, leave the recipe in the comments, as I’d love to try it next!

xoxo

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It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!