Target Giveaway!

I have a fun giveaway today! We're enjoying a nice week at the beach and I had actually thought I would blog a little while we were here, but we've … [Continue Reading]

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Empowering Everyday Women/ Vanity Fair

I'm sure all women have heard of Vanity Fair®, it's one of those amazing companies that have been around for years. And when I say years, I mean more … [Continue Reading]

Fill Me In Friday… Hair Routine, Tips and Tricks

I'm here with another round of Fill Me In Friday, and today I'm talking about my hair routine and a few tips and tricks I have. I posted about this … [Continue Reading]

Screen Shot 2014-09-05 at 8.17.51 AM

number matching fun

Last time I did a Fill Me In Friday about teaching BK, I said I would try and put some resources on the blog. Well, I've dropped the ball on the … [Continue Reading]

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the perfect planner, for me

First, let me start by clarifying a few things. These are solely my opinions based on using both of these planners for an extended period of time (not … [Continue Reading]

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Target Giveaway!

I have a fun giveaway today! We’re enjoying a nice week at the beach and I had actually thought I would blog a little while we were here, but we’ve been relaxing and taking it all in! Maybe tomorrow…

But today, I’m teaming up with a great group of ladies to bring you a chance to win a Target card! $370 to Target to be exact!

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Your lovely hosts for this giveaway:
Michelle & Channing at Moms Without Answers // Meg at Meg O. on the Go // Lindsey at Redhead Baby Mama // Heather at My Life Well Loved

Denise at Gratefully Inspired // Lynzy at Sparkling Footsteps // Jenny at Jenny Collier Blog // Karissa at Karissa & Company
Britt at Southern Mama + Child // Julie at The Girl in the Red Shoes // Megan at In This Wonderful Life // Jennifer at Life in the Green House // Kristin at Bon Bon Rose Girls

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Empowering Everyday Women/ Vanity Fair

I’m sure all women have heard of Vanity Fair®, it’s one of those amazing companies that have been around for years. And when I say years, I mean more like 100 years.  That’s right, for 100 years women have been looking to the Vanity Fair® brand for undeniable support, lift and a bit of luxury that comes with every piece.

Personally, I think it’s amazing that Vanity Fair® has been relevant to woman everywhere for that many years. But, honestly, it’s no surprise. In a world where woman simply want to look and feel their best, Vanity Fair® is helping every step of the way.

Their product is unmatched in comfort and style, their bras and panties are unmatched in style, on point with seasonal trends and colors, and look smooth and sleek under clothes. Everything a woman could want in undergarments. I know because I’m loving the Vanity Fair Beautifully Smooth Next To Nude bra. The fit is perfect and I don’t even need to wear a smoothing camisole under my shirts. The bra does an excellent job of looking smooth underneath clothes and providing excellent coverage and support.

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Not only do they provide a great product to women, they provide a great product with an even bigger message with campaigns like the “Women Who Do™” Campaign. The   “Women Who Do™” Campaign is a powerful and uplifting campaign designed to praise and celebrate everyday triumphs of women everywhere while highlighting the brand’s long-standing commitment to producing quality, luxurious lingerie at an affordable price-point.

Women like me, women like you, women who are out there getting things done, taking charge and doing their very best. This movement is fantastic because the goal is to spark a single movement that will empower women to support each other and do what makes them happy. Ultimately, isn’t that what we all want? To do our best, find our happiness, and celebrate with others while lifting them up in the process!

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I watched a great video on Vanity Fair®’s website from Angie Davids, founder of Project 39. She’s making an amazing impact in her community, empowering mothers, and making a difference all because of one single idea. Angie’s message is empowering and beautiful and we all could learn a thing or two from her uplifting attitude. My favorite quote of hers came from the video when she said, In any aspect of your life, you don’t have to do something big, you just have to do something. 

In addition to this program, Vanity Fair® also partners with Dress for Success®, an organization that provides professional attire, career development tools, and a network of support to disadvantaged woman. Vanity Fair® saw a need for intimate apparel and forged a wonderful partnership, providing lingerie to the non-profit organization. Just another way Vanity Fair is providing women with the support they need to be successful. And we all know how important this cause is, as women we perform better when we look and feel our best. It warms my heart to see an organization dedicated to helping women as they dress for success. 

Given the chance, these women could change the world; I’m happy to see a great organization dressing and empowering their success. Just this past July, Vanity Fair® and Dress for Success kicked off the national LiftTOUR, a nationwide bus tour with a prime focus on fit and philanthropy. The tour will travel across the country and conduct bra fittings at major retail locations. For every women fit, Vanity Fair will donate a brand-new bra to the local Dress for Success.

Their uplifting and empowering message will bring our your inner Super Woman, go take a look on their website and see what I mean.

Looking for me inspiration? Check out Vanity Fair® on their various social media platforms by clicking the links below.

Twitter / Pinterest/ Facebook / Instagram / YouTube

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Now I want to know, Who Inspires You? Tell me in the comments for your chance to win a $100 Visa gift card.

Sweepstakes Rules:

No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

  1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
  2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
  3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
  4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 72 hours to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 9/8 -10/19/2014.

Be sure to visit the Vanity Fair brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

 

Fill Me In Friday… Hair Routine, Tips and Tricks

I’m here with another round of Fill Me In Friday, and today I’m talking about my hair routine and a few tips and tricks I have.

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I posted about this a year or so ago and not much has changed. I chopped my hair off when I was pregnant with Braylen and it was a bit traumatic for me. Traumatic in a way that seems absolutely silly and ridiculous now, but at the time I was pregnant and hormonal and I wanted my long hair back. Since then, I’ve only trimmed it when I get it colored every 6-8 weeks.

My hair (and nails) grow really fast. I do take a multi-vitamin (Flinstone’s gummies), but I don’t take anything specifically for hair and nails. Also, my hair is naturally dark, I’m so used to it being blonde, I don’t know that I’d ever go back, but maybe one day.

Here’s a quick look at my favorite hair products and styling tools:

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My curled hair routine is so simple. When my hair is damp, I use Aveda Phomollient, it’s perfect for styling my fine hair and adds just the right amount of volume. I blow dry my hair with the Remington Tstudio Ceramic Hair Dryer using a large round brush, the Olivia Garden brush (the bigger, the better), to be exact.

I put my make-up on after it’s dry, it does better with a little time in between blow-drying and styling. Once I’m ready to begin styling it, I add a little Big Sexy Hair Powder Play  at my part and tease it just a little. Then, I take chunky sections of hair and curl using a 1/2-inch curling iron . I simply curl it away from my face and do it quickly, curling each section.

In the interest of full disclosure, I should tell you that my hair is really fine. If your hair is thicker or course, you may need to go up a size in the curling iron department. This just works for me, I probably curl 5 or 6 sections on each side, flip my head over and shake it out. When I do this, the Powder Play gives me a little extra volume and the curls separate. I finish it off with Paul Mitchell Extra Body Finishing Spray.

It usually looks like this:

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There are other products I use, just not on a daily basis.

  • Joico Color Endure Violet Shampoo- If you aren’t naturally blonde, like myself, this product will become your best friend. It tones my hair immediately and takes out the brassy color that my blonde likes to turn after a few weeks. Best of all? It extends the time in between salon visits. I don’t use it every day, just once or twice a week to really brighten the blonde.
  • Big Sexy Hair Volumizing Dry Shampoo- This is my favorite dry shampoo. by far. I love that it creates volume and the illusion that I spent a ton of time washing and styling my hair.
  • Coconut Oil- Pick some up at Wal-Mart and use it on a weekly basis. It helps my hair stay healthy and gives it a nice shine. Just put some in your damp hair and let it sit for a while. If you’re really ambitious, cover with a shower cap and blow dry for a few minutes.
  • Creaseless Hair Ties- My favorite hair tie and you can make your own at a fraction of the cost.

Tell me, what is your favorite hair product? Am I missing something great?

**Note- I didn’t review any of these products, they are all in the third drawer of my bathroom cabinet and used (and loved) daily by me, the links are Amazon affiliate links. They’ll take you straight to the product**

 

number matching fun

Last time I did a Fill Me In Friday about teaching BK, I said I would try and put some resources on the blog. Well, I’ve dropped the ball on the Friday series, but I promise I’m working on one for this week. I am making good on putting some learning resources on the blog, today.

With any child, if you can make the task more like a game, they’ll love it way more. It’s so important to give them hands-on activities and let them take ownership of their learning. It doesn’t feel like a chore this way and they don’t get bored quite as fast.

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I love using Ten Frames for teaching numbers. Ten Frames are simple graphics that are used to help children “see” numbers. It helps them understand that numbers are composed of tens and ones, which is a huge concept! Ten Frames also help with subitizing, the ability to instantly see how many. As adults, we look at numbers differently, we can look at a group of objects and instantly know how many are there without using a counting method. The sooner children are exposed to this concept and gain this skill, the better number sense they develop.

We use this game two ways. I cut out all of the cards and then they can be used for quick recall (only show the card for a few seconds) or matching.

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Just click on the links below to get the PDF to print. You’ll have to print it at 88%, apparently my margins were off, but it’s perfect scaled down.

Number Cards / Frames 1-5 / Frames 6-10

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the perfect planner, for me

First, let me start by clarifying a few things. These are solely my opinions based on using both of these planners for an extended period of time (not simultaneously). I paid for the Whitney English Day Designer and the Erin Condren Life Planner (2014-2015) edition. I’m saying that to let you know that this isn’t sponsored in any way.

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I love a planner, more specifically, I love a paper planner! I use it to keep everything together, to make lists, to remember important dates, to schedule our life! I’m not kidding when I say my planner goes with my everywhere, and I use it every single day.

I’ve been a long time Life Planner user. Last year, I ordered my third Life Planner and I’ve been pleased with the product. One of my favorite things about the Life Planner is the weekly view. I love to look at my whole week at once. I feel better about managing my week this way. I also love the vertical layout, it lends itself to list-making (which is what I normally do). I don’t particularly love the way the days are divided, but I just overlook that part and write anywhere I want to in the space.

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The Life Planner also has laminated tabs and a full monthly view. I love the fun colors that fill each and every page of the Life Planner.

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The organizational space in the back is functional and perfect for things like stamps, invitations, and important documents I need to keep handy. Life Planners always include gift tags (stickers) and mine came personalized and matching my planner this year. The Life Planner comes with a few other extras as well including stickers, a removal perpetual contacts and calendar, spiral paper clips, and a page marker/ruler that snaps into place. Additionally, you can order other coordinating products from the website.

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So what do I not like about the Life Planner? It took several weeks for me to get the product. Granted, it shipped by the date indicated, it just seems like such a long time to wait. Their production time is slow, and it has been for all the planners I’ve ordered. I also wish I could customize the daily boxes, instead of morning/day/night I’d definitely like to have one just for a daily random to-do list. I use them for things like that anyway, but it would be nice to customize the boxes to go with how I’m actually using them.

Next up, the Whitney English Day Designer. Allen ordered this for me for Christmas last year and I’ve used it until last month. Like the Erin Condren, it has tabs and a monthly view.

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Here’s where things get very different. The Day Designer has a separate page for each day of the week, and one page for Saturday and Sunday. The daily view is actually why I purchased the Day Designer. You can keep up with meal planning, daily to-do’s, and your whole day (broken down by hour) all on one page. There is plenty of room!

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As far as extras, the Day Designer has several pages of goal tracking at the front and a pocket inside the front cover for keeping important things handy. The Day Designer also has a neat little band that is connected to the planner to hold it all together.

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So what do I not like about the Day Designer? The very thing that drew me to the product, the separate daily pages. For me, it was overkill. Even when I was working, blogging, pregnant, and managing our household and a busy toddler, my life wasn’t busy enough to fill up these pages. Obviously, I could have written daily things that are part of our routine, but it just seems like a waste of time to write the same things every day. Honestly, I didn’t even know what to write in some of those boxes! The pages are also very thin, so I really had to be careful with what I wrote in this planner with, because it would bleed through very easily. The whole planner is black and cream (not white), it lacks color. All in all, I decided I definitely prefer the weekly view, it was hard for me to get a whole picture of our week because it just seemed too spread out for me.

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  • Both of the planners are large. The Day Designer is obviously bigger because of the amount of pages needed. Size was not an issue for me and didn’t factor into my decision at all.
  • They are both pretty pricey.
    • Day Designer (including shipping): $72.00
    • Life Planner (including shipping): $64.95
  • They both took several weeks to arrive at my house. Yes, several weeks!

So which one did I ultimately choose?

I’ll be using the Erin Condren Life Planner for the upcoming year. The colors, the extras, the weekly layout, it was all enough to sell me on the product and make me come back for another year of the Life Planner. But, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the planner for you. Depending on where you are in life and your personal planning preferences, you’ll have to take a look at both and decide which one will fit your needs best.

As far as pens, I don’t know that I’ll ever stray from these Staedtler’s

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What about you? What planner do you use?

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