Monday, October 13, 2014

Lola in the Pumpkins

I took some pics of my sweet Lola on the front porch with the pumpkins...

There were some kids walking by during our shoot, so she is very serious and focused on protecting the home front.
I love it though... that is so her personality.
As Hank the Cowdog is head of ranch security, she is definitely head of our house in the suburbs security.
A guard-dog in a pink sparkly collar.
I also took some in her Halloween costume, but I will share those closer to Halloween

(I think it's her best costume yet!)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

{Confessions of a Product Junkie}.... eye makeup

It's been a while since a Confessions of a Product Junkie post, but I'm back!  Today I'm talking about eye makeup because I purchased a new eyeshadow quad last week which I'm loving.


Here it is...

It's one of the Chanel Les 4 Ombres Tisse quads in Venitien 223.  It had caught my eye several times over the past couple of months as I ran though the department stores.  I decided to stop and actually check it out last week, and I was sold.

I have decided that I prefer buying eye quads.  Not all brands make quads, so that isn't always an option if you are brand specific, but I prefer them because:

(1) they are easy to pull out and use all the colors without 
having to sort through and pull out 4 different containers;

(2) Often when purchasing 4 together, you get out cheaper than buying 4 separate shadows;

(3) Your eye makeup often looks better when you use multiple colors like they do when putting them on you in the store, so there isn't the temptation to cut corners and cheap out of a color or two; &

(4) If you change color combos with the seasons like I do, then whenever you decide to come back to these colors, it's easy.  No trying to remember which colors you wore together.

BUT, like with all things, there are some drawbacks too:

(1) depending on the brand, you often don't get as much product as you do when you purchase individually (see #2 above); &

(2) This is a common occurrence ...using more of one or two colors.
This is a Tom Ford quad I've been wearing for the past 2 or 3 summers called Golden Mink

After evaluating my makeup stockpile, and without intending to, I seem to have narrowed it down to 3 favorite brands of Quads:

Chanel...



Tom Ford...

(see above) and this one which I favor for Fall & Winter

Le Metier de Beaute Kaleidoscope Eyekits

Back to my current eye makeup routine...

I start out with a good base.  If you aren't wearing an eyeshadow base, you should be.  There are several good ones, but I've been wearing Laura Mercier Eye Basics in "Flax".  A base will help prevent your shadows from creasing over the course of the day, will help them stay on better, and will even out the color of your eye lid so that you get a good true color with your shadows.
Then I use a brow pencil.  I'm not a brow pencil snob by any means, but I do believe in using one.  I don't care how dark or full you may think your lashes are, you will see a difference if you use a brow pencil.  If you don't think brows make a difference, just google images of celebrities that have been photoshopped without eyebrows... I'll wait.  Did you look?  I rest my case.

Now at this point, I use my Chanel quad to get some color going.

Chanel gave out this handy guide which makes putting your quad to use pretty darn easy...
I've been going with the Classic Look

I then curl my lashes.  There is not a day that I do not curl my lashes.  It's not just for special occasions!  If you don't curl your lashes, you should.  It opens up your eyes and completely changes the whole picture.  

Then I get to the eyeliner phase in this process.  I am currently pairing the following eye liners with my Chanel quad (yes I said liners, as in plural...I'll explain the madness)
I have lined up the liners on my hand in the same order they appear below...

On the top lid, I prefer to use a felt tip marker style liner.  I used to go with a Lorac that I liked, but found this cheaper Loreal liner that I thought I'd give a go, and I like it as well, if not better.  I use it on the top water line (below the lashes) and also above the lashes.

On the bottom lid, I prefer to use a pencil.  I've used Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil for several years.  I've always used the color "Zero" which is a black, but recently purchased the color "Perversion" which is a blacker black.  With this new quad, I've been using it on the water line.  

Now the green is a liner that I have had for a while, but the lady at the Chanel counter tried to sell me a black/green, and that jogged my memory that I had this Armani liner at home.  This exact one doesn't seem to be available anymore.  I have been using it as follows:  

Top Lash Line- over the black liner above the lashes
Bottom Lash Line- under the lashes and then smudged into the black in the water line.

I finish those off with mascara.  I started using Benefit they're Real! last year, and I really like it, but in my typical Product Junkie fashion, I use Boots No 7 Exceptional Definition in Black first.  I like that it defines my lashes, and then I use the Benefit to really pump them up.

And that's it!  I know some of you are thinking that I'm nuts, but honestly I do not spend over 15 minutes on my whole makeup routine every morning (and that includes some Lola petting in between  application of products!).  

It's all been wearing quite well, and I think I put these eyeliners and mascara through the ringer with my allergy induced watery eyes.  

Remember, at the end of the day, you need to use a good eye makeup remover so you don't end up without any eyelashes!  I have been using an Almay eye makeup remover pads that I get at Target for several years.  I use the long wear and waterproof ones, and they work amazingly well.




{Like all of my Confessions of a Product Junkie posts, this isn't a sponsored post... Just the products I like}

Monday, September 22, 2014

thoughts on tv {so far}

So have y'all started on the new premiers?  I have been enjoying the premiers so far (of course it's only Monday).  I spent a large part of last week watching Ken Burns' "The Roosevelts".  That was a 14 hour commitment, so I really feel like I have accomplished something there.

Last week "The Mindy Project" premiered.  It was awesome.  Man, oh man, do I love that show.

Last night was a big night of premiers for me... 60 minutes, Madam Secretary, and The Good Wife.  CBS drives me nuts on Sunday nights.  They never budget enough time for stupid football.  Then it jacks with my DVR, and Drives.  Me.  Nuts.

Anyway, I was very excited for 60 minutes.  Big.  Fan.  I have a friend who is also a big fan, so we can always discuss the episodes.  Total Nerd Alert.

Madame Secretary was off to a decent start.  I think it has potential.  It has great actors.  I just wish they hadn't dumbed it down so much, and I also wish that there weren't so many inaccuracies.  I don't mind not working my brain for an hour, but I don't want my brain to hurt for an hour due to the inaccurate depiction of the government offices.  So I'm willing to give it a go, I just hope that it gets better.

The Good Wife... what in the world?  Holy moly.  This show is good.  It's just so darn good.

I'm looking forward to more previews.  I'm just about beside myself because Thursday is the "Big" night for premiers and Texas Tech plays football.  Who in the world scheduled that?  I mean, good grief!

Any thoughts on previews you guys have seen?  Or am looking forward to?

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Fall TV {2014}

I love TV, and for those of us who love TV, there is nothing better than premier week.  Those casts we love are back, and maybe we are even looking forward to meeting new characters on some new shows.  I've made my spreadsheet of what comes on when, and when each show premiers.  Here are the shows I'm most looking forward to seeing again:

Returning this week on Fox for it's 3rd Season is The Mindy Project
To say that I LOVE this show, doesn't go far enough.  I watch each episode at least 2 times.  Last time I did that?  We are talking Sex and the City people.  I'm serious about this show.  It makes me laugh so hard.

And as an aside, I desperately want to be friends with Mindy Kaling!  But back to the greatness that is the show... Season One was good, Season Two was great, and I cannot wait until Season Three starts this Tuesday.  If you haven't jumped onto The Mindy Project train, get onboard...NOW!  Catch up with the first two seasons while DVR'ing the new season until you are ready to watch.

Of course I'm also ready for some Scandal!
Where on Earth is Olivia Pope?


Parenthood  is another one I'm really looking forward to.  This is the finale year, so it is bittersweet.  I'm so glad that NBC renewed it for a final, albeit shorter season, but I hate that great ensemble cast shows are so hard to keep running.  I love the Braverman family!  It is a show that makes me laugh and cry through every single episode without fail.

I also can't wait for The Good Wife.  It is great TV
And if you watch, this promo probably makes you have the same reaction that I did!
(If you don't watch, you should!)


There are several new shows I plan to give a shot, but one of the new shows I'm really looking forward to is Madam Secretary.
It seems to have several things I love on it's side: Washington, D.C., Great cast... 

What about you?  What are you looking forward to seeing on your TV?



I've excluded cable shows from this post.  I LOVE my cable shows, and am greatly enjoying those that are currently running, and eagerly await the return of some others, but since they don't fall into the typical network premier dates, I did not cover them here.  


Tuesday, September 9, 2014

London & Brussels 2014 {My Trip in 15 seconds}

Here is a flipagram video of the instagram pics I took while on vacation.  Essentially, my vacation, as captured on my iPhone, in 15 seconds.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

London & Brussels 2014 {Day Six}

Sunday was my last day in London.   I had been on the fence about whether to go to Buckingham Palace or not, so I weighed out the Pros and Cons.


Pros:
The Royal Childhood Exhibit
You Only Have the Opportunity to Tour for a month every year
I haven't done the tour since 1996

Cons:
I did the tour in 1996
It isn't cheap
I could spend the time doing something I haven't done before

Then I got in a twitter conversation with Victoria Arbiter, CNN's & ABC's Royal Contributor, and daughter of Dickie Arbiter, the longtime Press Spokesman for Her Majesty the Queen, about the Royal Childhood Exhibition.  She highly recommended it, so I booked my ticket for a 9:30 tour.  

I'm so happy that I did!  It was really great.  The tour has come a long way since 1996 (of course that was only the 3rd year that they had done the tour, so they may have still been figuring it out).  I really enjoyed the tour of the State Rooms of Buckingham Palace, and I thought the Royal Childhood Exhibition was charming.  Photos of the interior are not allowed, and I wasn't going to risk taking illegal photos in the palace, but if you want to see some pics of the Royal Childhood Exhibition you can click HERE.  

As soon as I was done in the palace, I hit up The Garden Cafe
I didn't really have a game plan for lunch, and figured that the Queen wouldn't serve dodgy food, so I decided to eat there.
I had a Ham & Cheese sandwich, tea, and dessert.
And it was really good!
P.S. How adorable is the Garden Cafe?  The pink and green color scheme? LOVE!  And that tray was so cute.  I had hoped they were selling them in the shop, but sadly they weren't.
{all food pics are iPhone pics}
This Strawberry Fraisier was to die for.  Yep, I was right...no dodgy food here!
After lunch, I hit up the gift shop and I tried buy them out.  Not really, but I did buy an adorable ornament and Buckingham Palace advent calendar that I can't wait to bust out during the holidays!

They have you walk through the palace gardens, and exit way in the back.  After that, I walked back around to the front to take pics.







Turns out the Mall is closed on Sundays!  It was super cool to walk down it and be able to take pictures and glance back and absorb the sights.
Big Ben peeking out over St. James Park.
And then the bottom fell out and it started raining cats and dogs.


I sought shelter under some trees for the worst of the downpour, and then continued on to Trafalgar Square...
Nelson's Column and the Lions


I had really been wanting to take some great photos of Big Ben from Trafalgar Square, but the rain kind of thwarted my plans.
I went down into the underground right there at Trafalgar Square to get out of the rain.  I took it toward Oxford Circus.  My afternoon plan was to get my shopping on in London!

Liberty of London was one of my stops...



Another stop was Hamley's toy store.  I went to see if they had any unique gifts for little people in my life, but I didn't find much (and honestly, it was so loud and crazy, it was kind of torture even being in there!).  They had life size royal family lego sculptures though!
The Queen was fun, but the corgi...I just about died over that cuteness!
After that I hit up Cath Kidston (I mean I hit them up hard, but then you know that I just about bought them out if you follow me on instagram), and Fortnum & Mason.  These hydrangeas were outside of F&M, and they were killing me with their beauty.  I have never seen ones these colors before!
{iphone pics}
After shopping hard all afternoon, I took a cab back to the hotel to start packing.  I had some plans to go to the observation deck of the Shard, but it closed earlier than I thought.  I was really worn out by that point, so I decided room service sounded like a fine idea.

I got a burger with grilled onions, streaky bacon (that's normal bacon over on this side of the pond), and Stilton cheese (a strong British cheese).  It was actually divine!  Great decision!

And just like that, my trip was over.  Much too soon.  I left the next morning on the 11:55 a.m. flight to Dallas.  The flight home was it's own special kind of hell, but I'm choosing to try to block that part of the trip.  I'm so happy that I got the opportunity to indulge my inner anglophile for a week!

 

2009 sweet cheeky designs sweet cheeky designs

Site Meter