Thursday, August 21, 2014

Mommy Daughter Fun At American Girl Doll Boutique & Bistro

Even though I have three kids and we do a lot of stuff together as a family, I do love being able to spend some individual time with each one of my little people.  So this past weekend I decided to give my little princess some quality time with mom as we did an early birthday celebration for her at the American Girl Doll Boutique and Bistro.

^^Every girl needs these Cinderella glass slipper heels.^^

 ^^ Not a real ballerina. Cardboard girl^^

^^They even have a booster seat for your doll to enjoy a meal with you!!^^

 ^^They provide a tiny box of questions that can spark conversation with your child! Love it. 
No iPhone games - only used it to take these pics:) And no, she can't read these on her own but she liked to pretend to.^^

 ^^Vivian's answers:^^
1. If you owned a horse, what would you name it?  Vivian : Vivian. of course.
2. What is the best class you've ever taken?  Vivian : nap time.
3. Would you rather take a shower or a bubble bath?  Vivian : pink bubble bath.
4. Who's the smartest person you know?  Vivian : Walker (her youngest brother).
 ^^They don't just serve regular Sprite.  They serve PINK Sprite!!^^

^^Some of the best comfort food you've ever eaten.  
Who knew a doll bistro would satisfy even the adult appetite??^^

^^They hooked the bday girl up with a candle and the yummiest chocolate ice cream sunday with whipped cream, chocolate fudge, and sprinkles!! They even came out and sang to her!!^^

This was our first time experiencing anything American Girl Doll related and I must come clean...Her doll (who's name is Peyton by the way), is actually NOT a REAL AG doll.  Those things are over a 100 bones!! 

So a good friend of mine (thanks Ashley) turned me onto the idea of getting an Our Generation Doll from Target, that closely resembles an AG doll in size and look, but for only around $32. The main difference I can see between the dolls is the hair quality - OG doll is not as silky and easy to brush as the AG ones, but who cares.  I was all in for this idea because honestly, my almost 4 year old doesn't know the difference and is notorious for not treating her dolls with the best care, for example - applying nail polish on their faces as "makeup."  I knew if I got her the real thing, I'd want to put a bubble around the doll and hold it myself so Vivian wouldn't destroy a hundred dollars worth of toy.  And that takes all the fun out of having a doll.   

Luckily, this store treats ALL dolls the same and were totally cool with us bringing in our fake one:)  All of the clothes and accessories available fit these Target dolls so I did splurge and buy Peyton a pajama set (so they can both change at nighttime!), eye glasses, and a wire brush which works better than plastic for their hair.  This store even offers a hair salon for your doll - no joke.  For a price, they'll sit your doll in a salon chair and you can choose her hairstyle. Although, if you bring in a fake, your choices are limited, because, well their hair isn't as easy to style.  But that was okay, I only paid 30 bucks for my doll and didn't want to pay half that to get her hair did;)  Vivian didn't care either - we had fun once we got home creating our own hairstyles. 

Happy early birthday my sweet Vivian.  I love doing girly stuff like this with you...xo, Mom

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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Product Review :: Sheer Cover Studio Perfect Shade Mineral Foundation

I always say that I won't try or buy a product JUST because of the celebrity it is endorsed by.  But then, never say never.  That's why when I was given the chance to try out multiple products from Modern Mom on the Sheer Cover Studio line that is endorsed by beautiful mom Brooke Burke-Charvet, well, I couldn't turn it down.  If it's good enough for Brooke, it HAS to be good enough for me right??

Have you seen this woman?? She is a machine!! She is 42, has 4 kids, a hot hubby, and the most sick body you've ever seen!  Check out this video for her recent shoot with Shape Magazine where she even mentions these Sheer Cover products towards the end!  She's got all of that plus a beautiful face that never seems overly "done" (unless you count her time on Dancing With The Stars, but that was part of the job:)).

Here are the products I was sent from the line to give me that effortless but flawless looking skin.

^^The Concealer & Brighten Trio in Light/Medium plus a concealer brush.^^

^^ Bare skin and bad hair. Ha!! It gets better:) ^^

I applied the Base Perfector Primer before anything else.  I took a picture of it, but honestly you couldn't see a difference on camera so I didn't include it. However, it feels just like the original Smashbox Photo Perfecting primer once applied. Really smooth and silky and has an ever so slight light powdery scent. 
Then I applied the Concealer (the lighter of the two) under my eyes, sides of nose, under chin, above upper lip, and down center of nose. ^^crazy looking placement above^^

 After rubbing the concealer in, I then brushed the loose Mineral Foundation in "Medium" over my entire face and really focused on top of the concealer placement.  I used the foundation brush included to apply this.  I applied two layers of powder because y'all know I like a lot of coverage!!  ^^This pic above is just after concealer was rubbed in, mineral foundation had not yet been applied^^

Then to top off my mineral foundation, I added the Sun-Kissed Bronzing Minerals around the perimeter of my face and under my cheekbones with their smaller headed slanted bristled blush brush.  This was a trio mosaic of shades that really worked well with my skin tone and had minimal shimmer to it which I prefer when using a bronzer.  It gave a realistic glow and was not orange at all.

^^Excuse the CRAZY bug eye face!! This is after the bronzer. ^^

 The Lengthening Mascara and Lash Extending Fibers was one of my favorite products.  I have tried a similar concept before here with Younique, but this duo produced more realistic lashes that didn't clump up and were not quite as dramatic.  

I added the Brightener (white section of the concealer trio) just in the tear duct area of my eyes and along the top of my lip. I actually really liked this product and found it to give a dewy appearance that really did brighten without being glaring or glittery. 

^^Finished look after adding blush & gloss (and blow drying my hair)!^^

Overall Take Away:

  • Although I've never been a huge fan of mineral makeup because I don't feel it provides the best coverage like a liquid does, I did find this stuff to do a decent job of giving me a very natural look. And it felt like I literally had nothing on my face.
  • Staying power, not so great.  Felt I needed to brush on more powder within hours of first application despite the primer.  Yes, I think these pics look great, but they were taken right after application.  It literally started to fade an hour later.
  • Without the primer, this would not have looked nearly as good, so the primer is a MUST.
  • Love the lashes, definitely gave more volume than mascara alone.
  • My favorite products - the concealer and brightener were pretty awesome.  Very creamy, lightweight, and blended in beautifully and provided great coverage. 
  • I consider my skin to be light to medium in tone - so I was shocked the medium shade of mineral powder worked for me.  But I definitely could not have gone lighter or I would have looked like a ghost! 
  • This won't be what I would wear for a big event or going on a date with my hubby, but it will be something I would wear if I was in a time crunch or to go to the gym (yes, I wear a little bit when I workout, don't judge).

If you like the looks of these products, Sheer Cover & Modern Mom are hosting a GIVEAWAY for 10 lucky ladies to win all of these products reviewed here.  Just go to THIS LINK to enter to win!

Are you a mineral makeup fan or have you tried Sheer Cover yet?

*These products were sent to me by Modern Mom for consideration only.  All opinions and thoughts expressed are honest and my own. *

Monday, August 18, 2014

Monday Beauty Mantra

" EYES, as they say, are the boobs of the face.  
And LASHES are their push-up bras."
(From the article "Thick Lashes" in the August 2014 issue of Allure magazine)

I laughed out loud when I read this quote while at the same time completely agreeing with it!!   Nothing is more feminine on a face than a good set of look-at-me-lashes.  A coat, or two or three of mascara, brings a face to life while lifting the eyes! I wouldn't walk out of my house without a bra on...same goes for mascara;)  

One of my most frequently asked questions by friends and clients is, "what is your favorite mascara?"  Probably because this is one of the most widely used makeup products by women who are minimalists to maximum makeup wearers.  It makes a big impact with little to no makeup skills required!  

So here are some of my current favorite drugstore + department store mascaras if you feel like it's time to try a new formula for your fringes.  Plus the best (cheap!) mascara remover without all the tugging.

What mascara is the bra for your eyelashes??

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Friday, August 15, 2014

Blurred (Skin) Lines :: L'Oreal Visible Lift Blur Foundation

My search for the perfect foundation to make my skin look, well, perfect, is an ongoing hunt.  Recently I was given the chance to try out L'Oreal's newest Visible Lift Blur Foundation which uses a new opti-blur technology through SheSpeaks.  My quest for Instagram-filter-like skin begins.  Here is my experience with it...

^^ BARE SKIN (yes I did my eye makeup of course - I can't go that bare!)^^


^^ Shade #205, Natural buff ^^

^^ Starting the half painted face experiment ^^

  ^^ Applied with foundation brush in crosshatch strokes ^^

^^ Half and Half face ^^

I think it's important to talk about my skin type first since it will affect everyone differently depending on that key starting point... 
  • I have very normal skin with no real blemish issues (except for the tiny two on my chin and nose in this post!), 
  • mild redness in the nose area, 
  • normal to dry skin, 
  • and luckily, few fine lines and wrinkles at 36 years old.

What I thought of the Visible Lift Blur Foundation :

I did NOT use a skin primer before applying this so as to truly put it to the test.  

Formula/Feel - Velvety, very soft, almost gel-like.  It feels thicker than most of the liquid foundations I have used in the past.  I know that might sound kind of negative, but it's not in my opinion, it equates to heavier coverage.  My dry skin loved the way it felt because it has a hydrating feel to it.  Not sure truly oily skin would love this.  

Smell/SPF - No smell whatsoever. Contains an SPF 18 - Yay!

Coverage - I would definitely categorize this as medium to full coverage.  More towards the full side. This makeup is for those that want a truly flawless coverage minus the flat matte skin.  The great thing that stood out to me was no real need for concealer.  Of course you can always benefit from a little concealer, but this foundation made me feel like that wouldn't be super necessary.  With no powder or primer, I'd say it didn't start fading away until about hour 5 of applying.

Overall Appearance - It makes my skin look very fresh with a light dewy look.   I think this is definitely going to benefit more "mature" and drier skin.  My mother (60 something :)) who had actually tried it before me wasn't completely blown away.  But then again she has oily skin so I'm guessing maybe it was too slippery for her and didn't have great staying power.  I wanted to see Instagram filter-like skin which it definitely came out close to for me.  It also made me feel luminous without the shine, if that makes sense.  I didn't want to add my usual powder to set it because I loved the glow it gave me.

If I had to rank this foundation from 1-10, I'd give it an 8.5 for sure.  Definitely experiencing blurred skin lines!! 

*This post is sponsored by SheSpeaks & L'Oreal.  I'm a big fan of SheSpeaks (great community for fellow bloggers like myself!) and of course L'Oreal that is my #1 drugstore brand in terms of makeup products.  All opinions and photographs are honest and my own and I appreciate these brands supporting JennySue Makeup.*    

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Makeup & Style Tips For Staying Cool At A Hot Outdoor Event

I was recently a co-host of a Girls Day Out Event with one of the local radio stations here in Atlanta, Star 94, and the day of the event was a scorcher!! We were all set up outdoors at one of the area outlet shoppes in the courtyard, so it was like we were in a pressure cooker despite the tents and their minimal shade.  Luckily, I dressed appropriately from my outfit to my melt proof makeup (hair is another story!). 

^^ Me and Elizabeth Herrin, style blogger of MzSavvyStyle, just goofing around - 
Me with my brushes and her with her mannequin!
This lady is such a sweet (and fashionable!) soul, I just loved being around her!^^

 ^^Me and Elizabeth with Star 94's on air personality, Cindy Simmons, who was such a sweetheart!
I was wishing I had her braids & hat that day instead of my hair sticking to my neck. 
Now SHE had the right hairstyle idea!! ^^

^^Me in action doing mini makeovers on the busy ladies and moms that came to the event.
I had someone in my chair every second of the 2 hours we were there and I thoroughly enjoyed meeting each woman and helping her with a quick pick me up makeup look!^^

Xhiliration Romper (Similar ikat print one here) | Black Wedges (on sale!) |  


What's the best OUTFIT to choose on a hot hot day in Georgia?  A sleeveless romper of course!! This one I got from Target but apparently they aren't carrying anymore but I found a similar ikat print from Forever21.  I chose one with a big loud print, because I knew I'd be sweating (ew) and if you're wearing a solid colored fabric, those ugly sweat patches are going to show!! So a print is good and distracting.  I paired it with a lacy bandeau underneath (no extra straps showing and more comfy than a real strapless bra).  My black cork wedges were worn to give me longer legs but are SO comfortable!! Key when working an event outside, in the heat, on the uncomfortable concrete, and on your feet for 2 hours straight!!  I had heels in my bag, but immediately bailed on them when I saw where I was to be working! And of course you can't do an outdoor event without the perfect large black sunglasses!

Now onto my speciality, the melt proof makeup look!!  


This was tricky, but luckily even though I kept dabbing my forehead with a kleenex to pull off the sweat, my stay all day oil free foundation stayed great!!
My other tips for melt proof makeup:

  •  Don't ever keep adding pressed powder to a sweaty forehead, it'll just get cakey. Use blotting papers or a thin kleenex (not the lotion kind of course!),  
  • I used a skin primer to double up the longevity of my long wear foundation, 
  • a major waterproof eyeliner (Urban Decay "Minx" I'm wearing is my new navy fave!), 
  • a bright powder blush (cream would have slid right off!) **Remember you can get my exact Plā Thing blush plus a special offer with purchase by using my promo code from this recent post!**
  • a simple lip gloss kept me looking fresh, 
  • and I locked in my look with a makeup setting spray so for those 2 hours I looked fresh...not sticky and sweaty!  
Overall it was a super fun event and I enjoyed meeting each and every lady who sat in my chair!  Luckily I was able to keep my cool look without looking like a hot mess:)  

What are some of your favorite style & makeup tips for the heat?

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Monday, August 11, 2014

All Dogs Go To Heaven

Today I am writing this blog post as a means of personal therapy.  I have always wanted my blog site to be a positive and happy place for people to visit, so I'm going to try and keep with that vibe despite the extreme sadness and heartache I am experiencing right now.

We lost our beloved dog Sophie last night after 12 years of life on this earth.  This pic of her above is with our firstborn, Jack back in 2006.  She was 4 years old in this picture and of course had to be included because she was also a family member!

"Life is pleasant.  Death is peaceful.  It's the transition that is troublesome."
Isaac Asimov

She was my first "baby" before Scott and I had human children.  We got her after 1 year of being married.  I remember the first day we brought her home and being in the car after getting her, weeks old, sitting so tiny in a blanket on my lap and thinking, "WHAT have we done?? Can we seriously take care of this little fur life?? I can barely keep plants alive!"  It was exciting, thrilling, and scary all at the same time.  It made me feel like Scott and I were real parents because dogs require so much love, attention, and guidance (hello teaching them how to pee outside and not in the house! Not easy).

^^ Last "selfie" pic I took of us at the beginning of July.^^

Yet despite all of the work dogs are, they are so loyal and never hold grudges which is the best part of owning an animal.  They forgive and forget better than any human on this earth.  They are seriously the ultimate friend.  I wavered back and forth on including this next picture my husband took in the car ride to the emergency vet last night when we knew she was in trouble.  But now that I've got it, I'm glad I have this last memory before we she was hooked up to a bunch of machines.

 She was still alive but so calm and just let me hold her which was actually very unlike her spunky self.  Usually car rides meant panting, slobbering, looking out the window, and lots of pacing around the seat.  But this time was different and I kind of knew in my heart what was about to go down.  After hours of IV fluids and oxygen to see if we could bring her back, the vet called to say she wasn't going to make it due to kidney failure.  She actually waited to take her last breath literally a minute after Scott and I got back to say our goodbyes.  She went on her own without any intervention from the vet, which in a way, made things a little bit easier that she did this on her own time.

She was the sweetest dog to our entire family and has definitely left her paw print on our hearts.  I just hope this heartache and emptiness gets easier as the time passes without her here in the house. I'm trying my hardest to figure out how to celebrate her life and not mourn her passing, but that's not easy right now.

Have you ever lost a pet?  Please share the secret to getting over the loss of an animal - I need all the help I can get right now! 

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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Butterflies, Beaches, and Gardens, Oh My!

A week ago I took the kids to visit my parents and we decided to take them to Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia.  This is a spot I used to vacation to with them when I was a child and loved it! Here is a (heavy) pictorial of our short day trip there.  It was a serious GORGEOUS day and we couldn't have gotten luckier with the weather when doing a bunch of outdoor activities!

 ^^ First visit to the Butterfly Center ^^

^^ Little hands longing for a butterfly to land on them ^^

^^ This butterfly must have liked my matching blue nail polish! 
(Forever21 flip flops, Maybelline "Blue Bombshell" polish here)^^

^^ She stole my glasses bc she wouldn't smile for the pic otherwise. Acrylic Neff sunnies here. ^^

^^ Flamingo interpretation ^^

 ^^ Everyone is smiling and looking at the camera!! Unbelieveable! ^^

 ^^ Extra large chess set. I have no idea how to play, but my 8 year old does!^^

^^ Ice cream sandwich smile.^^

^^ Me and my sweet dad! ^^

It was a fun filled (and tiring!) day of activities. From chasing butterflies, to obstacle courses on water (my boys did it, not me!), mini golf, shuffleboard, and sand castle building, it was a great way to spend the day and we didn't even do everything they have to offer!  My kids were asking when they could go back the next morning!  I always enjoy visiting my parents because it is like a mini vacation for me because I have two extra sets of hands!! Thanks mom and dad for being so cool and such amazing grandparents. 

Have you ever visited Callaway Gardens?

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