To our dreams...
Friday, December 31, 2010
To our dreams...
Thursday, December 30, 2010
If you're thinking of glammin' up your make-up for NYE, you can't go wrong with flirty, luscious fake lashes. They are the perfect special occasion accessory and they are now easier than ever to apply and remove. What I love about lashes is that even if you can't decide what you are going to wear - slap on some fake lashes and let your eyes do the talking. At that rate, no one will even notice if your socks match.
For the few hours that you're actually going to be wearing them, there is no need to splurge on a fake pair from MAC at Nordstrom priced at $14.00 (Glue sold separately for $8.00) when you can pick up a pair of Sonia Kashuk's Full Glam Eyelashes for $4.99 (Glue included) at Target. Hellooooo frugal find!!!
Tips & tricks to applying:
1: Before applying lash adhesive, make sure the length of the lash band will fit your eyes so that your false lashes will be comfortable. You don't want your lashes to start too close to your tear duct (inner), or go beyond your natural lash line. You may have to snip a small section off if your eyes are smaller.
2: Apply eyeshadow and mascara first. This way your lashes will be the same color as the fake fair and blend in better.
3: Apply a thin line of glue/adhesive to the lash band. It usually comes in white, which dries clear, and also a dark tone, which dries black. I highly recommend the white/clear for beginners.
4: Allow the adhesive to dry for about 30 seconds. This allows it to become slightly tacky and easy to apply.
5: Get close to the mirror and apply the fake lashes onto the eyelid as close to the lash line as possible. Keep eyes relaxed and adhesive will dry in no time.
Now it's time to strut your stuff!!
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
If you wanted to serve this as a meal, you could easily scoop onto a tortilla with a dollop of sour cream. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. ENJOY!
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Outfit 1 -- SASSY SPARKLE
Outfit 3 -- CASUAL CHIC
Monday, December 27, 2010
- Figure out the dress code for the event you'll be attending. Is it a formal party? Semiformal? Casual?
- Check the weather & ask the host if the party will be indoors or out. That scoop back dress might be hot but there's nothing worse than possible hypothermia.
- Keep in mind that wherever you're going, there will always be other guests who are more and less dressy than you. Your goal - don't be the most undressed.
- Avoid wearing brand-new, never been worn shoes. Considering that New Year's Eve is a time to start anew, you don't want to start it by being miserable and in pain because of sore feet.
- Look in the depths of your closet before hitting the malls. You may just have forgotten about that little black dress (that you wore 3 years ago that NO ONE will remember) that will look fantastic with that new necklace you got for Christmas.
- If you must hit up the mall, browse through a Celebrity Magazine (ie: US Weekly) to see what chic styles are hot right now.
- Know YOUR body type. Just because something looks good on Jessica Alba, you need to consider your figure and how to accentuate your assets.
Unsure as to what attire is actually acceptable? Here is the Dress Code Decoded so you aren't playing the guessing game;
Formal/Black Tie: Speaks for itself. Usually black tie for men and long cocktail dresses or dressy evening separates for women. In trendier cities like LA & NY, men can get away with wearing a black button-down shirt, no tie, with a tux.
Semi-Formal (or after 5:00): Tuxes are not required, nor are long dresses. Appropriate for him is a dark suit and a cocktail dress for her.
Cocktail attire: Dark suit, usually no tie, for him and short elegant (with a splash of sexy) dresses for her.
Dressy casual: For him, trousers and a sport coat and for her, a dressy pant look - ie; black leggings with a sexy tank. In the past jeans have not been acceptable for "dressy casual" but if you have a trendy pair of designer jeans, I say wear them!
Casual: Anything goes. Come comfortable.
Informal: Often interpreted as casual but it actually calls for more semi-formal attire; dark suits for him, short dresses for her.
Festive attire: Popular around the holidays with the mood of the party being either Informal or Semi-formal. For her, choose a look with a bit of sparkle or holiday pop (beaded sweater, fur vest, red silk blouse). For him, most anything goes.
Friday, December 24, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
This is a scent I've been wearing for years and it never fails me. It smells delicious. I get compliments left and right and eight times out of ten I'll get asked what perfume I am wearing. It's very light and crisp and stays on all day long. It's floral/fruity smell is one that can be worn both day and night. The men's "Light Blue Pour Homme" is equally as yummy. My husband wears it and you better believe, he has to 'fend me off. :)
Usually going with the Gift Set is the best deal but you can pick up the Women's Eau De Toilette Spray for $62-85 for a 1.7 or 3.4 oz. bottle or the Men's Pour Homme for $57-73 for the 2.5 or 4.2 oz. bottle.So if you've been procrastinating, luckily with this gift you still have time. Most malls are open until 10:00 PM on the 23rd but will close early (usually around 5:00) on Christmas Eve.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
4-6 boneless chicken breasts
8 oz. Catalina Dressing (I use Kraft's Fat Free Catalina)
1 package of Lipton's Dry Onion Soup Mix
1 - 1 lb. can of Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix dressing, soup mix and cranberry sauce in a bowl.
Trim chicken of any fat and place in a 13x9 inch baking dish.
Top the chicken with cranberry mixture.
Bake in oven for 45-60 minutes depending on the thickness of the chicken breasts.
My family loves this meal served over rice with a side of broccoli. This meal tastes great as left-overs and freezes well.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
2) Decorate Gingerbread houses: This is a fun tradition to start with close friends. It's even more fun if you make it into a friendly competition. Sadly, my husband always wins. Costco and Trader Joes usually always have some easy to assemble kits with all the fixings.
Monday, December 20, 2010
Small Dogs: They may be pocket sized and lovable but they're no small cost. While crate costs and spay/neuter fees are lessened, a smaller dog, like a Yorkshire Terrier and Pugs, can still cost nearly $800 annually.
Medium Dogs: Coming in a close second, medium-sized dogs, like Beagles and Cocker Spaniels, are nearly the most costly pets, fetching up to $1,115 annually.
Large Dogs: Big dogs like Golden Retrievers, Labrabors, and Dalmatians may have a special place in your heart but get ready to make room for them in your wallet. Obvious expenses like food and crates for large dogs are high and first year total expenses can reach $1,500.
Cats: Cats can provide warmth and companionship with considerably fewer demands than their canine counterparts. However, every furball comes with a price tag. Total first year costs for a cat can reach upwards of $640.
Rabbits: Rabbits may require even less attention than felines but costs for a floppy eared friend can exceed $800 for the first year. Where a Rabbit may not require walking, litter costs for your pet can more than double that of cats reaching a total of $885.
Guinea Pigs: Though many vets do NOT spay/neuter Guinea Pigs, the procedure is highly recommended for the many health benefits of spaying/neutering. The litter costs for these Guinea Pigs are as high as for that of a rabbit. Costs for a Guinea Pig can exceed $745 in the first year.
Gerbils and Hamsters: Though many vets do NOT spay/neuter Gerbils and Hamsters, the procedure is highly recommended for the many health benefits of spaying/neutering. Gerbils and Hamsters qualify as small mammals and incur the least in costs for quadrapeds. There are other costs to consider, such as cages and litter, which can bring the tab up to $500 in the first year.
Birds: Small birds such as Parakeets or the cheapest pets to keep but that doesn't mean free. One must provide toys and treats and a cage for their feathered friends. That can cost up to $255 in the first year.
Fish: Fish have their own costs and concerns. Tanks, trinkets and playgrounds for your fish can raise costs up to $185.
Obviously, smaller is cheaper. The difference between a large dog and a small one is $720 per year - and that's a lot of kibble. Now, let's just look at the dogs and cats. Let's say each of these pets lives 15 years. Here's the lifetime costs:
Cat - $9,600
Small dog - $11,700
Medium dog - $16,725
Large dog - $22,500
Promise me this - if you do get a pet, don't complain that you can't afford college for your kid! You know your budget. And you know your tolerance. Sure they are cute and cuddly but besides the cost, they are a lot of work. Best of luck in making your decision.
Thursday, December 16, 2010
The Travelmate is super easy to use - it has a quick-release strap that allows the Travelmate to be attached or removed within seconds to the backside of the car seat. What's even more convenient; you can just release the handle down and strap the seatbelt around the Travelmate if you bring your car seat on the airplane. No detaching or finding a place for it in the overhead bin. Although I am not a huge fan of bringing the car seat on the plane, the FAA actually recommends that all children under 40 lbs. sit in a car seat during a flight.
The Gogo Travelmate can be attached to most convertible or forward-facing car seats. To see a list that are guaranteed to fit, click here. The product rolls smoothly both forward and backward and is sturdy enough to accommodate a child up to 50 lbs. without any noticeable decrease in performance.
Whether you travel a lot or a little, this is well worth the $80 bucks. It's a sanity-saver and pays for itself the very first trip. Consumers on Amazon also agree giving this product a 4 out of 5 stars (with 251 reviews).
If you want to give as a gift or will be taking off before Christmas? Click here to order on Amazon. You must order by 11:45 AM (PST) Friday 12/17 to have it delivered by Monday, 12/20. If you want it by Christmas Eve, choose Free Super Saver Shipping to ensure delivery. *This item can currently only be shipped by Amazon within the U.S.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Two Faced Natural Eye Neutral Eye Shadow Collection includes 9 essential shadows for all-over lid color, highlighting, smudging, and more. $35 @ Sephora.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Hint: You don't need to give an occasional sitter a holiday tip. But if she's really gone above and beyond the call of duty or if you use the same babysitter often during the year, you should reward her for her hard work.
What to Gift: Buy something your nanny wouldn't get for herself like a designer handbag — it should be something that's a special indulgence.
Hint: Avoid kid-oriented presents like a new baby carrier or diaper bag. You want to reward your nanny for her hard work, not add to it!
What to Gift: Cash and gift cards are the best (and easiest) choices. But you should take the extra time to personalize your present with a card or a holiday token that your child picks out.
Hint: If only one person takes care of your child, you should give more generously, but if there's an entire staff of people, spread the wealth. In this case, it's okay to give less to each.
What to Gift: Remember that these are their jobs, not necessarily their only interests. Try something personal from your child, like a book or a drawing of the entire team.
Hint: If you're not up for giving a gift, a simple handwritten thank-you note from you and your child is a great way to show your appreciation.
What to Gift: A unique house plant is always welcome. But, you could also get the class to chip in for one big gift that's more personal — like a cooking class or a Kindle.
Hint: Check your school's policy because gift giving might be against the rules. Gifts are usually given when your child has one teacher all day. Don't feel obligated to buy presents for everyone.
Hint: An added non-cash token of your appreciation could be a glowing letter or email to a supervisor — it might even mean more than a present.
What to Gift: Ask around for advice on your assistant's interests like a certificate to dine at a fine restaurant or tickets to a big event. A stylish home accent is nice too.
Hint: Avoid gifts that are too personal like clothes or perfume, and avoid anything too practical. They're practical for you all year round, this gift should give them a break!
Budget: $10-$100 each
Budget: $10-$100 each
Country Club Staff
Budget: $50 for your regular servers, locker-room personnel, front-desk employees and golf professionals; $100 for head servers or special service.
Budget: One to two week's pay
Budget: Cost of one haircut
Budget: Up to one week's pay
Budget: Cost of one session
Package Delivery (UPS/FedEx)
Budget: Less than $75
Budget: $60-$100 upon reaching goal, or cost of one session.
4) Consider need. The lower-paid the worker, the more holiday tips are likely to be appreciated and the bigger impact your gift can have. Your tip to a manicurist or gardener may be a bigger deal than the same sized token to a package delivery person.
5) If you tip generously all year, you can skimp a bit. A smaller tip or a modest gift at the holidays is fine.
6) A note should accompany any tip. Your message doesn't have to be elaborate, but should include a couple of sentences thanking the person for his or her good work and wishing a happy holiday.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Alright moving on to what you should fill that cart with. Now that frugal is fashionable, Costco seems like the perfect store for the times. The blogosphere, no surprise, offers up sites for Costco fanatics and Costco cooks. And even A-listers are getting in on the action: Jessica Alba, Megan Fox, and Zac Efron have been spotted loading up their cars with paper towels and flat-screen TVs. So should you follow the crowd? Yes, but only for certain items. If you've got the storage space, it's tough to beat Costco for staples such as paper towels, diapers, and shaving cream. But as good as the price-per-ounce may be, you just don't need that much mayonnaise. Below, we've listed four surprising items that you should pick up at the warehouse.
2. Eyeglasses: Costco Optical - the only place. For $49, a licensed optician will perform a vision and eye health exam in an in-store exam room. A week later, you can pick up your specs. In a survey released by Consumer Reports, 30,000 lens-wearers chose Costco as their favorite optical retailer over vision store chains, independent optical shops, and private doctors' offices. Costco Optical earned the highest scores for overall satisfaction as well as for price, with its $157 median price for glasses. Compare that price with an average of $211 at independent optical shops, $212 at private eye doctors' offices, and $228 at Pearle Vision. Costco also stood out for lack of problems, such as loose lenses, distorted vision, or damaged frames in the first weeks after purchase.
4. Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Costco's Kirkland Signature Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil may be the best-kept secret in the store. At $9.99 for 1.5 liters, it is roughly half the cost of the well-known Bertolli brand, and yet, according to at least one independent study, it's much better. In a recent comparison of 19 olive oils on the market, The Olive Center, a research group at the University of California-Davis, found that Kirkland Organic was one of only five in the study not mixed with cheaper refined olive oil that can spoil the taste. The other four at the top of the list were all high-end brands that cost as much as five times Costco's. Make sure you buy the Costco version that's labeled organic, though, as opposed to the one that's simply called "extra virgin olive oil." It'll cost a little bit more, but it's worth it.
Another that didn't make the list that I personally think should have - meat. We aren't big meat eaters in our house but I have friends that have done their research and exclusively shop at Costco for meat. They have some of the highest quality 'choice' beef rather than 'select' beef which is a step up in quality at very reasonable prices. Take home the 5lb hamburger and put it into 1lb freezer bags, same for pork chops, steak (prime available @ $11 pound!) fish, baby back ribs and chicken.
Monday, December 6, 2010
3. Groceries: Yep, knew it. As part of its effort to bounce back from the recession, Target is rolling out an expanded grocery section, going head to head with Walmart and Kmart, which have already beefed up their fresh-food sections. Target’s new PFresh section, which sells a decent assortment of perishables such as meat, fruit, fresh produce, and baked goods, finally makes it possible to pick up the fixings for a complete meal while you are at Target shopping for other things. Let me say - LIFESAVER. “It has about 70% of the things you would find in a full grocery store, and prices are going to be 10-20% less than at a typical grocery,” says Colin McGranahan, an analyst with Bernstein Research. In addition, kids’ snacks such as granola bars and juices can be significantly cheaper at Target than at other big retailers and drugstores, and you can often save more money by registering on Target’s site to have coupons delivered to your smart phone, according to Stephanie Nelson, founder of CouponMom.com.
For its part, Target says it has eliminated or switched to safer forms of PVC in product categories covered by child safety legislation.
Friday, December 3, 2010
Brand-new car seats can often be purchased for as little as $50, and safety technology tends to improve with each year, said Denise and Alan Fields, parents and authors of "Baby Bargains." That makes getting a new one pretty much a no-brainer.
Exception: When "used" is really almost "un-used," such as a mattress from someone's rarely visited guest room. Still, you'd really have to trust the buyer to know, and disclose, everything that's happened on that bed, which is why you're still probably better off buying new. You shouldn't ever pay the list price, because haggling is expected. Consumer Reports suggests you need to spend about $800 to get a good-quality queen-size mattress and box spring set. That works out to about 25 cents a night - a small price to pay for cleanliness and comfort.
If diving, snorkeling or other aquatic activities are your passion, a good wet suit will set you back $100 to $400.