It's Okay Thursday #27

Thursday, November 29, 2012

It's that time of the week don't forget to link up with Amber & Neely!!

It's Okay ...

that this week I just haven't been "feeling it" - you know when you just get in a funk - blah!

to throw away a thank you card - okay thanks for the thank you card - but do I seriously need to keep it FOREVER?  I mean - I think a day tops - then recycle bin.  Am I wrong?

that I plan on giving all the adults in my life - DIY gifts - OMG I have like high hopes that I can get them all done!! (Oh there will be posts!)

that I am all about wearing tights to not shave my legs - so now if Florida would just be consistently cold enough to wear tights everyday I would greatly appreciate it.  I mean if my husband supports no shave season I think Florida should too ... right?

that I am so grateful for all my followers and readers - I don't think I have said this for awhile so I just want to say ... you guys are the best.  I really appreciate all your support - it truly means a lot to me.  
that I think this is the cutest pic ever!
I love these lil munchkins!

that I am super excited for my niece Kaelyn (one in the middle) she is going to be in the Christmas parade this weekend!  Her first parade!!  She and my niece Marissa (one on the left) are taking dance and their dance team is going to be in the parade.  I'm so excited to cheer them on ... one day my niece Leah (littlest one on the right) will be up there too!  Marissa is a veteran - she's been in dance for awhile and when she was a baby she won some beauty padgents ... okay NOTHING like toddlers and tiaras ... no makeup or Honey Boo Boo-ness involved.  There were trophies and she won A BUNCH!  Oh let me also say that there dance team is nothing like that other crazy show.  

What's okay with you today?
Don't forget to link up!

Holiday Helper Headquarters #9

Monday, November 26, 2012

Here are some Cyber Monday deals I just saw on

Beauty Bar - Enter code "BBCYBERMONDAY" at checkout to get $20 off purchases of $100 at
Bobbi Brown - Get 5 samples of your choice and free shipping with any order at
Colorescience - Get a free 6g mineral sunscreen with your purchase of $150 or more at
Dr. Brandt - Get 50% off full-size eye creams at
Hydroxatone - Get 30% off any purchase of $150 or more at with the code "cyber monday".
Mally Beauty - Get 25% off all face products at; use code "25FACE".
Philosophy - Get a deluxe tote bag gift set with your purchase of $75 or more at Enter code "delight".
Stila - Shop the online version of Stila’s LA Warehouse Sale, with deals of up to 80% off at
Have you gotten any fab Cyber Monday Deals?

Holiday Helper Headquarters #8

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Black Friday is almost here!
Here are some tips from All*You for Black Friday:
  1. Gather information. Follow your favorite retailers on Facebook and Twitter and subscribe to their e-newsletters—loyal customers often get first dibs on sales and special promotions. Also comb through newspaper ads on Wednesdays, and check websites that leak in-store or online sale information, such as,, and  
  2. Make a list. Figure out which of your must-have products are most heavily discounted and in highest demand, then give those higher priority. Then map out your route, noting what time each store will open that day.
  3. Scope it out. Either visit the stores on Wednesday night or call and ask each store manager when the sale starts, how early you can get in line and where the products you’re looking for are likely to be located. (Black Friday sale items often are stocked in unusual places.)
  4. Time it right. Plan your shopping trip based on your priority list and any time-specific deals. For example, if a flat-screen TV you want is 70 percent off between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m., start your day at that store at least an hour early.
  5. Be prepared. Carry ads with you (especially if you’re going to a store that price-matches). Dress in layers to avoid overheating, and bring water and a snack. Keep your receipts and note return deadlines (Black Friday products might not have extended return policies).
  6. Snap up deals ahead of time. You can shop before Black Friday and still get the best deal on some things. Both MasterCard and Visa, for example, will reimburse you the cost difference if an advertised Black Friday price is lower than the price you recently paid for the same item; you need to send your receipt, the ad and a claim form within 60 days of the ad’s publication.
  7. Skip the mall. Many retailers start Web-only sales at the end of Thanksgiving Day, at midnight. If you’re looking for a specific item, set up a price-drop alert on a site such as
Are you shopping this Black Friday??
What's your Black Friday tip??

Holiday Helper Headquarters #7

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Homemade Cranberry Sauce
Think outside of the car and make your own fab cranberry sauce!
It's super easy to make!  Also, it's a great dish to bring to a holiday dinner as a guest.
I made this last year to take to my parents' house and no one touched the canned stuff!


  • 3 cups or 12oz package of Cranberries - believe me one bag is enough you will have extra!
  • 1/2 cup Sugar or Splenda 
  • 1 cup Water or Orange Juice - The OJ gives it a kick and is definitely a talking point at the table - hmmm I taste a hint of something what is it ...
Now time to make the Cranberry Sauce:

Stove-Top Directions

  1. In a medium sauce pan, bring the water (or OJ) and sugar (or Splenda) to a boil. Stir frequently to dissolve the sugar.  
  2. Add the cranberries to the boiling water (or OJ).  
  3. Bring the water back to a boil. When the cranberries have burst, reduce the heat and let simmer for 10 minutes or until the desired consistency.
  4. While in the pan - use a potato masher or a hand mixer to make a smoother sauce - if you like it chunky skip this step.
  5. Remove the pan from the stove and let cool to room temperature.
  6. Put the cooled cranberry sauce in a medium bowl and let completely chill in the refrigerator.
  7. Store covered in the refrigerator - will last for up to three weeks.

Crock Pot Directions

  1. Line your crock pot with a crock pot liner - found in your local grocery store near the sandwich/freezer bags.  
  2. Combine the cranberries, sugar (or Splenda) and water (or OJ).  Cover and cook on HIGH for 2 to 2 1/2 hours - the tell-tale sign that it's done is that the cranberries have popped.
  3. While in the crock pot - use a potato masher or a hand mixer to make a smoother sauce - if you like it chunky skip this step.  Also, if you use a crock pot liner and the hand mixer make sure you don't rip the plastic and defeat the purpose.
  4. Remove the crock pot basin from the heating element and let cool to room temperature.  If your's doesn't remove just let it sit until room temperature.
  5. Put the cooled cranberry sauce in a medium bowl and let completely chill in the refrigerator.  
  6. Store covered in the refrigerator - will last for up to three weeks.
Great gift idea: Place in Mason or Jelly Jars!


Monday, November 19, 2012

I am tired of Skeletor making the best dressed list!

This is NOT a good look!
What do you think?

Holiday Helper Headquarters #6

Holiday Looks for Less
Emma Stone wearing jewel-tone Burberry Design.
Peplum and sequins = holiday fun!

So I don't know about you but sequins always make me think of holiday wear.  I love this outfit for the holidays because who says you have to go red and green.  Here are a few finds on creating this look for less this holiday season ... 
A) Forever 21 - $29.80
B) H&M - Two Color Combinations - $29.95
C) Sears - Rhapsody Collection- $28.99 
D) Forever 21 - Pink or Peach - $29.80
E) JCPenneys - Removable Peplum - $25
F) H&M Skirt - $24.95

I think I'll be rocking some sequins this holiday season ...
What about you?

Friday Letters #2

Friday, November 16, 2012

Dear Friday, As always thanks for finally showing up!  

Dear JCrew, Please stop sending me these tantalizing emails ... 
okay so I looked ... I mean I had to ... right?

Dear Sephora, Cinderella makeup collection ... 
brilliant or ridiculous ... I can't decide.
Dear Friday Afternoon, Can you please move it along so I can go home!  Dear Foggy/Drizzly Weather, Please stick around for the weekend - I have longed for a sleepy weekend.  I just imagine me and sweatpants and cocoa and naps .... sounds lovely ....ahhhhh!  Dear DVR, I can't wait to watch all my shows tonight - hubby works late so I got a date with the Housewives and Teen Moms .... YAY!!!  Dear Grocery Store, I am going to try to hit you up early so I can get all my Thanksgiving supplies without all the madness ... kinda cuts into my lazy weekend but the quicker I get it done the faster I can get in those sweatpants and on that NAP!!!  Dear Blog, You have tons of work to do this weekend.  Could you just get on that and give me some write ups and drafts by Sunday evening?  Hello??

Have a Happy Friday and Have a Great Weekend!

Don't forget to LINK UP!!

Holiday Helper Headquarters #5

We all want to get holiday deals and save money - but how?  Well head over to - Stores & Coupons Tab - there are 100s of stores listed with in-store coupons and online coupon codes.  

For example here is a deal from Ann Taylor Loft:
  • $20 off $75 on Full-priced Orders
    Use Ann Taylor LOFT Coupon skinny4
  • 20% off $100 or 25% off $100 with Love Loft or Ann Taylor Card + Free Shipping on $125 [Exp. 11/15]
    Use Ann Taylor LOFT Coupon Code LOFTCARES

  • What money saving sites do you recommend?

    It's Okay Thursday #26

    Thursday, November 15, 2012

    It's that time of the week don't forget to link up with Amber & Neely!!

    It's Okay ...

    that my Holiday Helper Headquarters post have received min comments - all good - tons of fab stuff on its way - had to get all the lame stuff out in the beginning.  Stay tuned for Black Friday help, DIY gift ideas, recipes and TONS more fabulous stuff.

    that I ate WAY too much at lunch time!  

    to check your DVR last night and getting p-oed because stuff didn't record then realizing you think it is Thursday night and not Wednesday night ... seriously it happened not once but twice last night!

    to blog surf in an effort to stay awake to watch American Horror Story.  Is there a reason it has to come on at 10 PM?  

    to not get your hopes up when the weather gets chilly - tights one day - sweating with tights on the next - pick a season Florida!!

    to follow and comment on blogs that don't follow me - maybe they haven't figured out that they are totally missing out by not checking in on me.

    to have like 10 blog posts in "draft" form - sometimes you just have to have some work-in-progress stuff going on behind the scenes.

    So what's okay with you today?
    Don't forget to link up!!

    Holiday Helper Headquarters #4

    Making a list checking it twice ... get organized with LISTS!  You can reduce your holiday stress by making lists to ensure you don't forget anything or anyone.  

    Types of Lists:
    Gifts - to buy/budget - click HERE and HERE for some templates to try.
    Things to Bake
    Recipes to Make
    Decorating Ideas
    Holiday Cards to Send
    Shelters to Help/Care packages to send
    Guests to Invite/What they will bring
    Parties to Attend/what to bring
    Blog Posts to Post
    this list could go on and on....

    The trick is to keep your lists organized.  I suggest either getting a cute holiday notebook or download an app.  There are tons available in the app store.   Just figure out which way is easier for you to have constant access to the list.  

    If you want to make a notebook - I suggest buying one that has pockets or creating your own with a pronged folder.  You could also go super chic and use a binder but don't forget the bigger it is - the more you have to tote around.  Compile all of your lists and make categories - color code with post its or tabs. In the pockets you can keep receipts, coupons, invitations, shop ads, recipe cards, etc.  The best thing about the notebook is you can file it away for next year.  Use it as a guide or repeat the process.

    The notebook can look cute and be super organized but toting it around can end up being a pain.  If you want to use an app - I suggest Awesome Notes and you can separate your lists with File Folder Colors.  You can download a free version from Apple.  
    What kind of app do you use?
    Do you like to keep handwritten lists or do you prefer electronics?

    I won a giveaway!

    Wednesday, November 14, 2012

    I won a giveaway from Words We ♥! Thank you!!
    I love this homemade notebook and the bookmark!
    Also, I love that the writers of the blog put in their favorite quotes!

    The contest was to enter your favorite quote ... my entry was ... Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind ~ Dr. Seuss

    What's your favorite quote?

    Holiday Helper Headquarters #3

    Tis the season for DELUXE SIZES that offer yearly savings.  For example, this time of year Bareminerals rolls out it's deluxe size foundation on original foundation.  Basically it is twice the size of the normal foundation yet NOT double the price - $38.  It's $10 more for double the amount.  Last year I bought two and currently I am at about half way through the second one.  Before purchasing the deluxe sizes I would buy 3 to 4 regular foundations a year. $28 x 4 = $112.  $38 x 2 = $76!!!  That is a $36 savings!!  

    You have to act fast to get them.  Currently they are available at Bareminerals online and stores and Ulta online (sorry haven't checked the stores).  Sephora will have them available online for now you can give them your email address and they will email you when they are available.  Last year, I purchased my two from Sephora online and received free shipping since my order was over $50 and they were delivered within a matter of days.

    Also, Sephora has Tinted Mineral Veil in the Jumbo size for $30 available online only.  That is $10 more than the regular size but nearly four times as much.  You could definitely make it all year with one!

    Holiday Helper Headquarters #2

    Tuesday, November 13, 2012

    Since we started off with a financial budget ~ now seems the perfect transition to food tracking.

    It has been said that the average American gains 5 to 8 pounds over the holidays and the most popular New Year's Resolution is to lose weight.  The best defense is a good offense ... right?  So let's break that cycle this year and start tracking what we eat.  No one is saying that you can't have holiday dishes and you have to eat plain lettuce through out these next couple of months.  Just keep track to not get out of control.

    In this day and age, there are so many free apps to keep track.  I found Calorie Counter by Everyday Health, Inc. in the Apple Apps Store for free and googled it and found that it's also available for Android phones.  

    To get started you enter your weight, birthday and gender.  Then you choose your weight goal.  If you are just wanting to maintain over these next couple of months put your goal as your current weight.  If you are wanting to lose or have an ideal weight input that ... note it will also give you what your BMI weight "should" be you can choose that or something a bit higher if you have a more "realistic" number.  Just don't go lower than your recommended BMI.  It will then give you your calorie amount/day.  You can adjust it a bit but don't go lower than 2.0 pounds a week.  Create a screen name and password and you're ready to track.  Begin tracking your items through the preloaded items or scanning the barcode.  There are articles, tips and recipes   The app will sync to the online version as well.  The online version has a few added features.  For example, you can keep track of your daily water and vitamins. 

    If you don't like this one.  Keep searching - there are so many to choose from.  

    Lose It is also a popular app
    This app is quiet similar to Calorie Counter.
    You can link up with friends and earn badges.  It also has an online version that syncs to the app.  There is no where to keep track of water and vitamins but you can join challenges.

    The trick is to find one that is right for you can just start keeping track.  Whether you just want to lose weight or fight off the holiday weight gain - start tracking today.

    What app do you use?

    Holiday Helper Headquarters #1

    Monday, November 12, 2012

    Budget is not a bad word.  Budgets are realistic for everyone.  I used to be HORRIBLE with money.  I thought as long as I have it - I have to spend it.  Well that was all fine and good but one day I thought where does all my money go?  So I printed out those dreaded bank statements and prepared myself for the shocking truth.  Truth was - I wasted a lot of money.  I spent $100 at Target - what did I buy?  Hmmm can't remember so obviously it wasn't anything I needed.  The realization of how much money I was spending eating out and at Starbucks was like hello toilet - flush hard earned paycheck.  So I decided I needed a {gulp} budget.  I didn't start off thinking I was going to spend ZERO, I just came up with feasible amounts to spend with room to shrink.  

    Monthly Income - Bills - Gas - Groceries = Leftover $$

    So with that Leftover $$ - I decided that I would spend X on Starbucks, X on eating out and X on frivolous shopping.  How did I figure out X?  Well I looked at those horrible bank statements ... highlighted Starbucks in one color ... added them up ... passed out ... came to ... figured out a more reasonable amount.  Repeated process for each one.  The trick is ... you don't have to go without your favorite things you just need to pull back a little.  

    Also, I kept track.  Each category had an amount I could spend and I wrote down every thing that went into each category and kept a HOW MUCH LEFT amount to know when I was approaching my limit.  As annoying as it sounds - it truly helps.  Hate writing stuff down?  Then try or Mint App - click here for info!  What I love about mint is that you can set up all your budget categories and it will automatically put your purchases into those categories and email you when you are getting close to reaching your limit.  So no writing it down and no math!  YAY!  Super easy.  Occasionally I would find that it would put something in a weird category but it's super easy to switch it to the correct one and it tends to remember the next time it see something like it or the same thing.

    After I kept track for awhile, I also noticed that I was making better choices when shopping.  Do I really need this often came to mind or do I really need to go to Target.  Seriously if I don't have at least 10 things that I NEED from Target - I don't go.  I just know if I don't go in that place with a plan - money will magically fly out of my wallet and into their cash register.  Since I was becoming a smarter spender, I was also able to slim down some of the X categories and put even more into my savings.  

    Same thing can apply for holiday spending.  Make a budget.  Figure out who you need/or want to buy gifts for and set an amount kinda like you are doing secret Santa at work - there's always a limit.  Give yourself a limit.  Don't go to the store unprepared.  Figure out what you plan on buying everyone on your list.  Get your budget rolling now and check back for more holiday spending tips, including Black Friday and other ways to save.

    What budget tips do you have?

    Holiday Helper Headquarters

    Friday, November 9, 2012

    Every year I let many things pile up or go unnoticed until after the holidays then I spend all of January feeling guilty and promising to fix all of the messes by the end of the month.

    So this year I thought I would make a conscious effort to a stop to all this madness in my life and start the new year off guilt free and why not share with you. 2013 will roll in with ease!

    I'll be sharing with you tips on staying healthy, shopping ideas, budget advice (yep yep), time-savers and much much more.

    Starting weekdays November 12 - December 21 tune in for 30 days of "Holiday Helper Headquarters".

    Have any issues/things you want me to address?


    Look of the Day photo | Cameron Diaz


    I love this dress ... the black and the nude look great together.  
    She is gorgeous!

    Saturday night I watched Bad Teacher online and I absolutely love her in that movie.  She is beyond hilarious!  I can't really think of one movie of hers that I don't like ... hmmm ... checking IMBD ... ok I hate the Shrek movies ... but that doesn't count.  One of her other roles that I love is In her Shoes.  It is such a great sister movie.  It just shows how sisters can bang heads but really help each other grow and if ANYONE knows about banging heads with sister it is yours truly here - Love you Nicole and Debra.  If you haven't seen the movie ... WATCH IT and if you have watched the movie ... READ THE BOOK!  The book is even better!

    Also, if I could ever meet her, the one pressing question I would have to ask is, Tommy Boy (named change to save me from legal issues) was wearing heels in that movie right?  He's totally not that tall.  Love you Tommy - don't sue me!  I know you are the man!  I saw you drive on Top Gear ... you are totally awesome ... but I just gotta know!

    Don't you just love Cameron?
    What's your fave movie of hers and please don't say ANY of those horrible Shrek movies!

    It's Okay Thursday #25

    Thursday, November 8, 2012

    It's that time of the week don't forget to link up with Amber & Neely!!

    It's okay...

    to score Jaguar tickets to tonight's game from work but plan on rooting for the Colts!

    to eat the same thing for breakfast and lunch.

    to make decaf organic green tea from Whole Foods but put Sweet & Low in it.  Hey I'm getting better don't judge!

    to leave work mad early to get ready to go to the game that work gave you the tickets ... I mean I gotta change!

    to struggle to stay up until 10 pm to watch American Horror Story.  I just cant DVR it and wait ... GOTTA WATCH IT!!!  SOOOOO GOOD!!!  

    to get in a rut - mental, physically  emotionally, whatever-ly and climb yourself out.  

    to make work fun by creating fab outfits ... OMG I sooo need to show pics yesterday and today are looks worthy of what I wore posts!

    to be nice but sometimes put your foot down.  I mean come on - some people TOTALLY take advantage!

    to live in Florida and not understand why the heck our votes are STILL not in!  Newsflash - election = O V E R!

    to be super excited about leaving early - wait I already said that - see I am THAT excited!

    So what's okay with you today?
    Don't forget to link up!!


    Wednesday, November 7, 2012

    No not the election!

    I recall my J'Adore of Redken All Soft Shampoo & Conditioner!
    And many others where I gave this product mad props!

    Unfortunately, Redken has changed the formula of this product.  Which now makes it obsolete   All the greatness about it is now GONE!  The new formula leaves my hair dry, tangled and brittle.  As you can see from my previous post, I used to stock up when it went on sale at Ulta.  

    When I first noticed it, I thought perhaps it was just the one bottle I bought, like it was a mistake, mixed wrong.  I mean it usually had a peachy tint and the new bottle was white.  I got out of the shower dripping water everywhere as I dug under the sink for the rest of my stash and I looked at each one - white, white, white - AHHHHHHH!  Alas, it was true, Redken had let me down.  

    So when I was packing for my trip (wedding & honeymoon) I found where I put some of the old formula in a travel size bottle.  Seriously, it was a mini miracle!  Could it be?  Fab Redken All Soft right before my wedding??  YES!  Oh thank you thank you thank you.  I was beyond sad once that little bottle ran out.  

    So now what?  The greatest conditioner is now GONE!  Apparently, they cost cut the formula thinking you would still pay a pretty penny for it and magically not notice.  So now I am using Bed Head Resurrection 3 - this stuff really works.  See my initial thoughts HERE!!

    Don't you just hate it when products change?

    Dangy Long Legs

    Monday, November 5, 2012

    In the spirit of America's Next Top Model - I thought I would post this ad I saw in Marie Claire.  You know we always hear Tyra telling the girls to look tall in photos and for their legs to look long and to pose H to T (head to toe) so when I saw this ad I thought ... Dang!  That's a lot of LONG legs!
    This photo is fierce!  What do you think?
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