April Beauty Favorites

It is time for another round-up of my beauty favorites! I really enjoy these posts as it gives me a chance to try new things and tell you about them. With the weather changing again I am finding I need to adjust my beauty routine.

Some of these are affiliate links. That means I receive a small commission if you buy something from them at no cost to you.
  1. Clinique Cleansing Balm: I LOVE LOVE LOVE (I am sure you can tell my love) cleansing oil. It leaves your skin clean without disrupting the pH. This cleansing balm turns in to a cleansing oil as you massage it in to your face! My makeup melts. I bought the travel size, but I love it so much that I think I will get the full size. My regular cleansing oil had run out and I thought this would be a fun try.
  2. Monat Split End Mender: This is a magic product. Magic. I used it for the first time two weeks ago. I put it on my hair after washing it. My ends were smooth, I could tell that the split ends were mending back to the shaft. No, it will not get rid of your split ends, but it will help them bond back to your hair and keep it from splitting further up! (if you want to try this please send me an email, find me on Instagram and send me a DM (same on Facebook)
  3. Bobbi Brown Crushed Liquid Lip: I bought two of these back in February. I am in love. The colors I got are Hippy Shake and Peach & Quiet. I love how lush they are. So creamy and hydrating. Such perfect colors. I haven’t used Peach & Quiet so much because I thought it would be perfect for late spring and summer. But Hippy Shake is a light pink, and it is perfection on my lips. I have darker pigmented lips and sometimes light pinks look awful on me. Not this one.

4 Weeks to Read Progress Update

I have to admit something. I have failed at getting further than three lessons in. The first week we did lesson one. It was spring break and I had my big kids home! The second week we worked on the second lesson. Then we were hit. With the stomach bug of death. Each person in our house got it a different night in the middle of the night. Last week I was busy detoxing our home and scrubbing everything down. Therefore I only did lesson 3.

However, Claire recognizes letters M, A, and P. She also knows the sounds they make and several words that start with those letters. And sometimes when she is talking she will stop. She will recognize that she has just said a word that starts with a letter she knows and tell us she just said whatever letter!

I completely realize that Claire is 3 and a half years old, I don’t have to expect her to read in 4 weeks. But, I LOVE seeing that she is getting it and that she is recognizing letters through sounds and on signs. She is building her foundation for reading. Here is hoping I can get my act together soon and have the whole curriculum gone through and to see her succeed even more!

Favorites Friday Target Edition

I love Target. Who doesn’t? We have at least one weekly visit there. One thing I love about going is I feel like there is always something new to see. When I am in a time crunch and know what I need to get, I will often order online to pick up in store. This is one of my favorite things because I am still working around Oliver’s nap, picking older kids up from school and life in general.

I wanted to share a few of my FAVORITE Target picks.

Some of these are affiliate links. That means I receive a small commission if you buy something from them at no cost to you

  • Universal Threads Cutout Booties: I have been wanting a pair of shoes like this for a LONG time. When I saw them online I knew I needed to buy them. They fit true to size, are comfortable to wear right out of the box (no need to “break them in”) and look good with any outfit! I think I need them in brown now.
  • Joy Lab Scalloped Workout Leggings: I need to get in and get me a pair of these. I have been looking at them for weeks. I just don’t enjoy trying on clothes when I have my munchkins with me.
  • Essie Treat Love & Color (TLC): I have a love for all things Essie. When I need to give my nails a breather between gel polish, dip manicures I use the Essie TLC polish. It feels like there is nothing on my nails. It helps to cover up the damage on my nails and protect the fragile nails.

Do you do the buy online pick up in store? I am wondering if I am the only one…. I have a few stores I do that with and didn’t know if you would find it beneficial for me to do a post about that. Would you?

Our Story {Part 7}

This season of dating Scott was not as intense. I had moved to Utah, we lived in the same town, we had the ability to hang out any time we wanted. There was no travel involved.

We took it easy. We hung out a lot. We did things that included my kids. A lot of the time Scott would come over in the evenings and we would binge watch Chuck.

I feel like this part of our relationship was very foundation building. We had emotionally gotten to know each other a great deal in the first 5 months we dated. Now we were getting to know each other in our day to day life. I loved when we spent time together. Scott was incredible with my kids. He always wanted to include them.

One of the first things Scott did that made me feel so special is he helped Alex make his Pinewood Derby car. The first one went WAY over weight, so Scott took off work and made him a new car. I could not believe how caring he was to do that.

Easter Sunday this year was spent with his family. He and his brother were wrestling (probably figuring out some brotherly problem) and Scott blew his pectoral muscle off of his chest wall. So he had to have surgery to put it back on. I went and took care of him several times and spent the weekend with him. By the next weekend Scott was ready for some fun so we took the kids to dinner and to an arcade.

Scott and I also celebrated birthdays in April and May. It was a lot of fun to grow together as a couple. I look back at this time in our relationship with fondness and a smile.

There was a time I got a REALLY bad sunburn. Like I was radiating heat. Scott had this great idea to getting the burn out of my skin. An ice bath.

We took the kids in to the mountains to roast hot dogs and make s’mores.

Scott bought the kids bikes and taught them to ride two-wheelers. I hadn’t been able to buy them bikes as a single mom. There just wasn’t a ton of money for extras.

Where The Wild Things Are Party

Whew. What a weekend! We were hit with a stomach bug, PLUS we had family fly in for Oliver’s party. So we adjusted and were still able to have the party. I saw the Where The Wild Things Are party idea on Pinterest. I loved it. And I came up with lots of decor ideas, but finding all of the things for the decor was a little on the hard side. I still think it turned out adorable.

Remember how I made this craft? I recycled my leaves to make a long vine to decorate with! Winning! I just used some hemp twine and wound it around the intact loops. Next I used my hot glue gun to glue at least one more leaf to the others and sometimes a third leaf. I love the way it turned out.

I found a couple of fun banners to hang up too. One was gold sparkly crowns and the other was a cute little pennant that looked like wood. I used the crowns to decorate three little evergreen trees. The one that looked like wood was placed around the bay windows just below the vine I made.

I asked Scott to make a “boat” for decor! He used our wagon as a frame and a lot of cardboard. He spray painted lines on for planks of wood. And then he drew a Wild Thing on cardstock to add as a finishing touch to the boat.

For Oliver’s cake I bought a cute live edge wood platter.

I put some cute little Where The Wild Things Are quotes on my letterboard and light boxes.

We served Hawaiian Haystacks for dinner before we did cake. Look for a recipe soon! I didn’t get photos of everything laid out because everyone started eating SO FAST!

But here is sweet Oliver with his cake. He was not a fan of the attention at all! He kept saying “ooohhhh” as he ate the cake.

Oliver’s Birth Story

Yesterday my baby turned 1! I am so excited for him. He is such a joy to have in our family. He lights up the room. He is so funny and cuddly. I thought I would share his birth story with you. When I was pregnant I loved reading birth stories. I still love reading them.

Let’s rewind a bit. When Claire was just over 18 months I knew it was time to try for our last baby. I had my IUD removed in May. By July 10th I still hadn’t had a cycle and I was worried. I was older (who are we kidding, I am still older). What if we had problems bringing another baby to our family? My mom had an appointment for genetic testing with my same OB so I asked what I should do since it had been 8 weeks and still no cycle. He immediately gave me a prescription for progesterone to get me on track. I filled the prescription but didn’t start taking it. Scott and I were going on my DREAM trip on July 22nd and I knew I didn’t want to start my cycle on that trip. I was going to wait until I was home. However, by Wednesday my body had different ideas and I had my cycle. That meant that I would be ovulating while we were in Paris. I was so excited at the thought of getting pregnant on THIS vacation.

Lo and behold, I got pregnant in France! Our baby was due in April. I was thrilled. The perfect time to have a babe. We found out we were having a boy and I knew he needed a French name. So we picked Oliver.

I have been induced with all of my babies. I have REALLY fast labors and deliveries. Oliver was scheduled to come on April 11th. However I was willing him to come any day in April before then. But, he didn’t. I did all the things. I walked, I hiked, I ate so much pineapple, and anything else you can think of minus drinking anything that would just make me have to stay close to the toilet. The night before my induction I got a call from the hospital saying to be there at 6:30am. So that was that. We had a time to be there. I should also mention that one of my sweet friends, Mary has a sister-in-law who is a nurse in Labor & Delivery. She was with me when I had Claire, so I told Mary to have Sarah waiting for me. And she was! I love Sarah.

When we arrived at L&D we had to call in and be buzzed in. I think I said “I am here for my torture” and they let me in. We got to our room, I got changed. Sarah checked and I was 4 cm dilated. Then came all the pre-induction stuff, blood draw, putting the IV in, asking me a million questions. Around 7:30am Sarah came in with the bag of pitocin and got that started. Pitocin always works for me immediately. Within 4 minutes I was contracting. They were uncomfortable, but I was talking through them and just fine. At 8:30am my doctor came in to break my water. I knew that as soon as that happened I was going to be feeling pressure, I knew it had to happen.

Giving birth is such an incredible thing. It is also painful, terrifying and really hard. Knowing what is coming is the worst. Once my water was broken I knew it wouldn’t be long before I was holding Oliver in my arms. Perhaps this is where I take a moment and tell you, I did not have any pain management drugs. No epidural, no IV meds. No, I am not crazy. I just have really fast labors and deliveries. I can handle it. It hurts. It isn’t the best feeling, but I can do anything for a short amount of time.

When the doctor checked me as he broke my water he said I was still at a 4. Which is fine. Water is broken, everyone leaves. I am sitting in bed starting to feel a lot of pressure. My contractions became so much more intense. I stopped talking. I had to focus on my body as the waves overcame me. I went in to myself. I couldn’t play on my phone, I couldn’t talk to Scott. The contractions were right on top of each other. I was getting maybe a minute break in between.

At around 8:57am Sarah came back in as I was having a contraction. I didn’t realize until that moment that I was starting to vocalize during my contractions. That low, deep growl sound. She knew that I was getting close to being ready to push. I wanted to use the restroom. So Sarah helped me out of bed and I was able to take care of that. When I came back out Sarah asked if I wanted to try the birth ball. I said sure. In my previous deliveries I hadn’t used one. It felt amazing to open my pelvis had have the pressure on my back. After about 5 minutes on the ball I told Sarah I needed to push, that the pressure was too much. She helped me back in bed and called for the doctor to come.

While we were waiting for the doctor to come I hit that sweet transition spot where the contractions slow down just a little bit. It was so welcome. By 9:20am my doctor was in the room and everything was set up for me to push. When my doctor checked me I still had a little bit to dilate. My contractions were slowed down enough and I was able to catch my breath between that I relaxed and reminded my doctor that he promised me that even with a big headed baby he would make sure that I didn’t have an awful tear.

That last little lip went away and it was time to start pushing. I remember Sarah telling me “Let’s get him here by 10!” I can’t tell you what time I started pushing. I know it was after 9:50am. I remember thinking, “I can’t do this. I don’t want to do this.” Scott says that I said it out loud too.

Oliver’s sweet little cry sounded as soon as his head was delivered. I remember feeling so much fluid coming out of my body and the doctor saying “I don’t know where all of this is coming from. I mean, I know where it is coming from, I am a doctor.” And then being told to stop pushing. Oliver had some WIDE shoulders. The doctor had to get him unstuck and so much fluid was coming out around him. Sarah told me to look down at my baby and I could see him. A moment later Oliver was on my stomach and I could see his sweet little face. Then he peed, on his dad.

This was taken when Oliver was about 4 minutes old.

It was the best feeling to finally have him in my arms. Oliver was born at 10:03am on April 11th. We didn’t meet the 10am guess by Sarah, but we were darn close.

We left the hospital just after lunch the next day. I don’t love being in the hospital. I like my house, my bathroom, my bed and my routine.

Farmhouse Meets Pastels

Can you believe we are already in APRIL? I can’t. Tomorrow is my little Oliver’s first birthday! A fun fact: Last year Easter was on April 1st. I was a billion months pregnant. This year Easter is on April 21st. Which means in Oliver’s first year he didn’t get to have an Easter!

Today is also the day for the fun Inspire My Creativity post. I am super excited for this craft today. I this pin on Pinterest and knew I needed to make it for my project. I followed *most* of the instructions from her blog post. Of course I adjusted where I saw fit to. Do you know how hard it is to find orange tulips at the craft store? Oh my. Oh my. I am so glad I was able to find them. And now that I know who carries them, I will share with you.

Some of these are affiliate links. That means I receive a small commission if you buy something from them at no cost to you

What you need:

  • Orange Tulips I bought 10, and my mom made one with me so we each used 5.
  • Floral Wire to hold it all together.
  • Greenery I used this one and I can’t find the other one I used.
  • Green Burlap Ribbon (similar)
  • Wire cutters and needle nose pliers

First, the instructions I read needed 12 flowers cut individually. So we cut 12 flowers and got started.

Step 1: You will take 3 flowers and make a sort of triangle with them, one longer between the other two. This will be the point of your “carrot.” You will use wire to wrap the stems together. You will also add the ribbon to the back of these three and wire around the ribbon and stems.

Step 2: Take another 3 flowers and place them above the first 3. I put one flower in between the bottom two and then one on each side of the same two. Wrap wire to hold the flowers in place around the first three stems and the ribbon.

Step 3: You will take the remaining 6 flowers and add them above the last 3. I wired 4 closer to the flower end and the two outside flowers I bent out to get that deeper V shape and wired them a little further up the stems. Don’t forget to wire the ribbon around the stems as well.

Step 4: Remove the leaves from the rest of the tulip bunches. Leave the tulips all connected to the base. This is KEY!

Step 5: Fan out the flowers. This is kind of tricky, I actually got frustrated and had to walk away for a minute. You will arrange the flowers again like you did with the 6. They are all combined at the ends so you won’t have to wire down the outside flowers. Just bend them so they fan out. Don’t forget to gather the ribbon around as much as you can!

Step 6: Take the second bunch of flowers and repeat Step 5. Again with the ribbon at the back.

Step 7: I cut off the last bunch of flowers that I had and used them to fill in any bare spots or less full spots. I had flowers left over in the end.

Step 8: I took my greenery that was not “flowy” and cut down the bottom of it as close to where the wires actually met inside of the holder. And then I laid that at the end of the tulip stems and wired it down. I made sure to get the ribbon included in this one last time! After I had the top greenery, I used more droopy type greenery to go out the sides that would run along the edge of the carrot flowers.

Step 9: Flipping over the “carrot” you will then loop the ribbon over to create a place for the “carrot” to hang from. I wired around at this point as well.

Step 10: This is where you can make a decision. You can wrap the ribbon around and tie a bow, or wrap it around and around the stems to cover up any wires and knot it at the back. I chose the latter.

Was that clear as mud? I hope it was clearer! I hope you are inspired to make some amazing this month. I really enjoyed making this.
This post is part of the Inspire My Creativity link party that I co-host. Our theme for April is Pastels! The other co-hosts are sharing their projects today. I would love for you to see what they came up with!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Next months them is SOMETHING TO WEAR. I can’t wait to show you what I have in mind for that!

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