Author: Lara


May Birchbox – Freewheeling


I am overwhelmed with goodies since I got my Birchbox and Ipsy on the same day. I have no idea what I am going to try first…

May’s theme is “Freewheeling”, whatever that means. I am less excited about my Birchbox this month, but I still think I got some good stuff: Number 4 Volumizing Shampoo (a deluxe sample bottle) and Conditioner (single use packet) – which is kind of fucked up to not give the same size of both, COOLA Environmental Repair Plus Radical Recovery After-Sun Lotion (I burn easy, so this will be used), Marcelle New·Age 8 in 1 Power SerumPIXI Beauty Shea Butter Lip Balm in “Pixi Pink” and SmartyPants All-in-One Adult Complete Gummy Vitamins + Fiber. I don’t know how I feel about vitamins that make you poop…

I used several of my shampoo/conditioner samples while traveling, so I’m happy to get more…now I just need to get sunburned…

If you would like to try Birchbox, click on my referral link – – I’ll get 50 points if you join.


May Ipsy Bag – Fresh Picks


I got my Ipsy and Birchbox on the same day!

This month’s theme is “Fresh Picks”. The May bag is the prettiest one yet – unlined canvas with green leaves all over it. Inside my bag: Hang Ten Classic Sport SPF50Pacifica Mineral Eyeshadow “Duo #2” (Moonbeam & Unicorn)Balanced Guru “No Frizz Organic Sesame and Lemongrass Balancing Oil”Hey Honey “Take It Off!” Exfoliating Honey Peel Off Mask and Pur~lisse “pur~moist hydra balance moisturizer”.

I am most excited about the No Frizz hair oil. I’ve never heard of the brand, but it has argan oil in it. I love what argan oil does for my hair – goat poop or not. I also like the eye shadow – come on, one of the shades is called “Unicorn”!

If you’d like to try Ipsy – click here. I’ll earn 250 points if you sign up through my link.


Mother’s Day


Oh, Mother’s Day.

I have a love/hate relationship with Mother’s Day. The hate has faded a bit in recent years. Mostly love now, but the twinges of hate since I lost my mother are still there. I can’t imagine how people without children or mothers can tolerate Mother’s Day. My first Mother’s Day as a mother was also my last Mother’s Day with my mother – I never had a gap where I was alone on the holiday. Even then, the first few years were difficult, even with my kids and husband rallying around me. I’m able to love it now because my husband goes the extra mile in facilitating how my kids show their appreciation. I’m not talking flowers and chocolate necessarily, but the true expression of what my children think that I will enjoy.


The true expression of what my son thought I would enjoy was my very own Zebco fishing pole. He had been planning this gift since Spring Break, when I caught my first fish – and fishing fever – using Lily’s ‘Dora the Explorer’ fishing pole. It’s hot pink and awesome, but he was very disappointed that he couldn’t find one that exactly matched my car. He told me that he knows how important it is that everything match my car.

He also cooked me breakfast – red velvet waffles and scrambled eggs. It was DAMN good.




The true expression of what my daughter thought I would enjoy was…of course…fingernail polish. I had my suspicions when she and my husband snuck away while I was at Target yesterday. She picked out 7 polishes for me: 3 China Glaze Crinkled Chrome“Crush, Crush Baby”, “Don’t Be Foiled” & “Wrinkling the Sheets” (I already have the first 2, but so what), Nina “Blue La La” & “Gold Flake Topcoat”, Orly “Bubbly Bombshell” and Sally Girl “Red Glitter”.

In order to show my daughter how much I love her, I let her paint my fingernails. I have NEVER let her paint my fingernails before. For my left hand, she chose Nina “Blue La La” and “Gold Flake Topcoat”. It looking amazing together! For my right hand, she chose “Crush, Crush Baby” and “Bubbly Bombshell”. Again, an impressive combination. I topped both hands with Sally Hansen Diamond Flash.


I’m thinking this could be a new Mother’s Day tradition, because once a year is probably as often as I could handle someone else painting my nails…


Getaway VIP


I don’t normally get all pumped for the VIP Tote, but this one had some really good stuff.  The Getaway VIP Tote is valued at $113.50 (yeah, right) and features the new scent “Morocco Orchid & Pink Amber” – fine fragrance mist, body lotion and shower gel. It also comes with a “French Lavender” mini candle, “Forever Midnight” mini eau de parfum, “Lavender Blossom” gentle foaming hand soap, “Wild Passion Flower” hand cream and a bath pouf. Surely I could find $40 worth of stuff I needed…

Although I try to only buy during “Buy 3, Get 3”, I’ll sometimes settle for “Buy 3, Get 2” if I have a coupon…since I had a “$10 off $30”, I decied to try out another scent – “London Tulips & Raspberry Tea”. I got fine fragrance mist, body cream and 2 shower gels. I also picked up an extra “Morocco Orchid & Pink Amber” Shower Gel. A second after I realized that my total was $39.50, Lily ran up demanding I come smell this new scent she had discovered – “Hawaii Passionfruit Kiss”. She wanted the shower gel, but I opted to get her a travel spray instead – PROBLEM SOLVED. I shall call her “Mini Me”.

I got everything in the picture for just under $60 – nearly $200 of stuff. I’m kind of a badass.



Plié Believer


Although I happily crowdfunded Julep’s new Plié Wand, I was a bit skeptical about how well it would work. How could a longer, paintbrush-like handle make much of a difference when painting my nails? As Channing Tatum so succinctly said in 21 Jump Street – SCIENCE. I don’t know what type of brush Leonardo used when paining The Mona Lisa, but I’ll bet it wasn’t a 2 inch long one.

However it works, the Plié Wand WORKS. My close friends know what a slob I am when I paint my nails, but using the Plié, my nails were nearly camera ready after I painted them. This tool may change my life…

I felt a twinge of regret that I didn’t also get the striping and dotting tools, but realistically, I’m not the Pinterest-y, flowers type of person. I just want glitter and sparkle. I may pick it up at some point, but if I do – it will likely gather dust.

I started with 2 coats of Julep “Paulette” and added Julep “Yumi” on my shocker nails. My nails look FABULOUS.

On a sidenote, I actually started filling out the “Swatch Me” stickers on the tops of my Julep polishes. Until the Plié, I had no idea that the overcap comes off and I was scratching my head trying to figure out how to get the polish on the top of the brush lid. DUH.



Good Intentions


My intention when I walked into Big Lots today was just to pick up some Veggie Straws. Maybe some Zone Bars and Pop Tarts…the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

I saw The Healing Garden “Passionate Rose” Rainwater Body Mist first. I’m always on the lookout for Rose scented stuff – it’s rare and The Healing Garden is a good brand and you can’t beat $1.50.

I was disappointed that they were out of Olay Fresh Effects BB Cream. That stuff is $12.99 at regular stores and I wanted some for $5. I did find some cheap cotton rounds – I hope they don’t suck.

I turned the corner and there were several new bins of $1.00 fingernail polish. I controlled myself and picked out 5. Sinful Colors “Nova” is black with green and silver shimmer. Sally Hansen Diamond Strength “Sparkling Rose” is, well, sparkling rose. Revlon “Brilliant Bordeaux” is black with fuchsia and silver holographic bar glitter. Revlon “Ruby Ribbon” is fuchsia with fuchsia and silver holographic bar glitter. Julie G “Gift Wrapped” is fuchsia microglitter. I’m not familiar with Julie G – I hope it’s not shit.

It just goes to show that I cannot be trusted to go shopping ANYWHERE.




Mardi Gross


This is not what I had in mind at all. Imagining the two polishes together, I thought my nails would look like the beach at high noon, the sun’s rays glinting off the sea foam, seashells glittering in the surf. I was dead wrong.

Instead, my nails look like Bourbon Street the day after Fat Tuesday – cheap beads floating in a river of vomit and piss. Mardi Gross.

To be fair, I only put down one coat of Julep “Kennedy” and I should have put down two. I totally misunderstood how Sinful Colors “Bombshell” would look. I should have swatched. ALWAYS swatch.

Excuse me while I go remove this crap and try something else…


Masked Ceremony


If I could have ANY job I wanted, I would be a Nail Polish Color Namer. I consider myself to be a fairly creative person, but the people who name Nail Polishes are on a totally different level.

This is Orly “Masked Ceremony”. The name reminds me of some twisted sex party with masks – like Eyes Wide Shut. This is the color of Nail Polish you put on when you are going to get screwed by a dude in a pig mask….not that I know anything about that. I totally DO NOT know anything about that.

It’s so hard to take pictures of dark nail polish – I had to go stand in the backyard. I kept flipping my hand around to try to pick up the fuchsia highlights, but they are barely visible. I wonder if my neighbors think I am a nutcase?



Is Ulta Addiction a Thing?


The DSM-5 needs to be updated to include the very first case of POCD – Polish Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. I could make some psychiatrist’s whole career!

Ulta is a weekly thing with my BFF and I, but while in DFW for Texas Frightmare Weekend, we realized that our other friend had never stepped foot inside an Ulta. We had to remedy that immediately! (To be fair, I passed 2 Ultas while I was walking around in Downtown Chicago and I did NOT go in – most of my co-workers were dudes, so I controlled myself…)

While my BFF had her eye on stila concealer, I was content to browse the clearance aisle. The Irving Ulta has a kickass clearance section. I picked up 4 polishes…

Sally Hansen Gem Crush “Lady Luck” – fuchsia and silver holographic glitter – for 69 cents. I really LOVE Gem Crush and will own them all someday.

Orly “Purple Poodle” – fuchsia with a blue shimmer – for $4.99, and Orly “Masked Ceremony” – Steel with silver shimmer, fuchsia highlights and silver chunks – absolutely spectacular and $3.99. I’ve never tried Orly polish, so I’m intrigued.

Seche “All Lit Up” – fuchsia with gold shimmer – for $3.99. I’ve never tried Seche either.

So on top of saving approximately $18 on the clearance polishes, I also busted out a $3.50 coupon from my email. My total was $11 even. Now THAT made the OC in me REALLY happy!


Shit Nails


Sooo…I’m back at home and my nails look like absolute shit. Not only do my nails look shitty, but my hands are parched and the skin on my fingers is starting to flake. Too much handwashing in public bathrooms with cheap soap.

The “One Week” manicure looked great until Friday morning…when the middle fingernail on my right hand started peeling. I was in the middle of packing to leave town, so I left it and then patched it with more essie Luxeffects “Set in Stones” that evening. They looked tolerable enough, but by Saturday evening…I broke down and covered everything with a coat of Sally Hansen Gem Crush “LadyLuck”. I went to sleep happy…

…but today, the polish has worn off around the edges of all my nails – nothing wants to stick! I’m too damn tired from all my traveling to fix my nails the right way, so I’m just going to go to sleep and worry about them tomorrow. Tomorrow is another day.