Ladies I am about to debunk something for you. I am about to shed some light on the great purse debate. While these opinions are entirely my own, I feel compelled to share the following with you. A ginormous purse / bag is not a necessity. And, I am saying this as a mommy of a two-year old. You know, a mother who must tote gummy bears, juice boxes, diapers, a change of clothes, grocery store coupons, a baby doll, a book bag, baby doll’s bottle, Lo’s favorite blanket, baby doll’s rattle, all as I head to the grocery store. I know roll your eyes and gasp. Seriously!
I am all about saving money. Why spend more when you don’t have to? Don’t answer that! There is no need to. In fact, there are so many great resources out there that are designed for you to do just that – save money.
I have been meaning to put this post together for a while now, but have put it off due to the work around building it. Since it is unlike my typical thoughts to paper (or shall I say thoughts to blog) posts, you know the ones where I ramble about life, motherhood, family, etc., I had to motivate myself to put the “work” in for this one.
Finally, after chugging along in the evenings, I was able to compile my list below. I am so happy to finally share these “hacks” and techniques for saving money when shopping with you because they are so easy and they really can pay off.
Aside from mommyhood, which I often talk about and share here on the blog, I do have a full-time career in marketing / pr. Did you know that? Maybe you did but if you did not, now you do. One thing I have learned from my many years in the industry is that world of mouth is still king! Think about it. Why do you think social media is as big as it is? It is all about conversation and connection. So, essentially social media is one big blob of word of mouth. People ask for recommendations on a hairstylist, sitter, restaurants and contractors. We trust other people before we trust advertisers. Still to this day, we put our guard up about advertisers, thinking a commercial, a print AD or a billboard are visual displays of a facade of the brands very best. The thing is advertising is changing and meshing so much due to social media and digital landscapes that we often do not even realize we are being advertised to, when in fact we are.
As a blogger, we work with brands often. Sponsored posts are how many major bloggers make some serious dough. I am not at that level. Nope, not yet! Just little ole’ me providing you with true word of mouth great products with no connection or tie to these brands. I throw that out there to really emphasis the fact that by me sharing these products with you I am truly picking my favorites with no biases. These are products that I purchased with my own money in 2016 and fell in love with enough to share with you. That is all. Just like BFF’s do. So, you can say we are BFF’s for life, minus the best friend forever necklace.
Dermalogica Multivitamin Power Firm – 58.00
I introduced Dermalogica Multivitamin to the Blog early this year. It was my first solid skin care investment. This product focuses on the skin around your eyes. As I have gotten older I have clearly noticed the new visible lines that curve around my eyes and in the middle of my brow. This product contains Vitamin A which is supposed to accelerate the skin’s natural repair process and Vitamins C and E which are to assist with elasticity, ultimately reducing the thin lines that seem to just appear for an unwelcome face party.
Philosophy Pure Grace – 48.00
I credit my Momma for this beauty must-have. She has been a fan of the Philosophy line for sometime, raving about the scents and the products. I finally gave it a try, or sniff on the wrist when we shopped at an Ulta. When I was in college I worked for Bath & Body Works and learned when determining a new scent it is beneficial to test the scent on your wrist and walk away. Give it time to combine with your body chemicals. If you lose the smell of the scent on you after 5-10 minutes it is actually a great thing! The opposite means the scent is too strong for you. Philosophy Pure Grace was that product. The scent that passed my little test. I often get compliments too, which is not a bad thing.
Jane Iredal BeautyPrep Face Moisturizer – 45.00
This is my new favorite skin care product. I literally picked this up as a splurge and now I am hooked. It has a faint smell of lemon which is so fresh and cool to the skin. I apply this moisturizer to my face after every shower, each morning before my makeup and before bed.
bareMinerals Prime Time – 27.00
If you have not already realized by now, I am not glued to one product line. Instead I enjoy finding the right product versus getting consumed by a whole skin care line. bareMinerals was the first “real” beauty line I started investing in outside of drug store products. I was introduced to the foundation over 10 years ago. Through the years I have swayed from the line, but the Prime Time is one product I continue to invest in. You apply the primer to your skin prior to foundation application. Prime Time allows for your foundation and eye shadow to stick better. Also, the product includes SPF and diminishes blemishes and uneven skin tones.
Maybelline Mascara – 6.99
Simple enough, huh? I am a big mascara girl. If I am not wearing it, then you might as well make me walk out of the house with no clothes on. Yikes! Fun fact about myself? I can actually put on mascara without a mirror. May be my best trick ever. I am pretty sure I can relate this back to my high school cheerleading days when you practically got ready for the game on the track, with no mirror. This is my new go to. I love the wand, coverage and the price point is not bad either. Tip of the day, did you know you should throw out or replace your mascara every three month? See, that is why the price is crucial.
Target Crossbody Bag – 29.99
This item was on my Christmas wish list this year and I got it, so yeah for me! I have been a big bag girl all my life. (Not to be mistaken for big bad girl – you read it that way first, didn’t you?) Do you know how hard that is? Do you understand the struggle? I have crumbled crackers in the bottom of my purse, spoons, Lo’s binkies and headbands, and once I found a rotten banana. Gross! I decided I was simplifying in 2017, so part of that was losing the baggage, get what I am saying? Now that is not to say I won’t break out a big bag again, but for now the crossbody bag is perfect because it forces me to asses what I need and allows for me not to not have a dumping ground hanging off my shoulder.
J.Crew Factory Winnie Pant – 43.50
I know what you are thinking, “Really?” Yes! I am in work clothes more hours in a week than I am in casual, so I tend to invest that way. While I do tend to live in dresses and skirts I do like nice dress pants or slacks in the winter months. Dress pants are hard, or at least they are for me. I find that they are either unflattering or too long. J.Crew’s Winnie Pant was my win for the year!
Love Your Melon – 30.00
I received this beanie for Christmas this year and immediately knew I was in love. First, the beanie is adorable, well made and super comfy. More importantly, the brand’s mission supports pediatric cancer. The brand is dedicated to providing every child battling cancer in America with a beanie. Plus, 50% of all profit from sales is donated to nonprofit partners.
Old Navy Rib-Knit Sweater – 15.00
Usually the products I love the most are typically unexpected buys. This sweater was one of those. I think it was probably an online situation dilemma in which I needed to hit a total minimum to redeem free shipping or some cash coupon promotion. I bought this sweater on the fly and immediately adored. It is lightweight and soft. I am a big sweater texture girl. Certain fabrics make my skin crawl just thinking about them. And, happily this is not one!
So, there you have it! True recommendations from me. See, word of mouth still wins!
I am not one to shy away from the goodies that Popsugar delivers to my door each month. I actually look forward to this subscription box because it is the best of the best in quality brands and in surprises. Each month has been an ooh and aah since we collaborated.
October brought the Henri Bendel umbrella that has become an essential and the Morning Culture rise and shine mug which has quickly become my favorite. November’s Kendra Scott bracelet took the champion spot and I get compliment after compliment on the piece.
So, December is here, well actually December from a calendar perspective is near to disappear, but December Popsugar Must Have Box reveal is here to the Blog.
It is back! No, not the ugly sweater you must return, or the belly ache from way too many cookies or the family jet lag, no, it is Nordstrom’s Half Yearly Sale. I know what you are thinking. “Ashli, how can you possibly shop after the madness of the holidays?” Well, let me reassure you. I can always shop. Always, always. Maybe the difference is that I would not step foot into a store right now, but put a cup of hot coffee in my hand, add some comfy pj’s and some online perusing, well, now you are talking my shopping love language. And, one cannot hide from the Nordtsrom Half-Yearly Sale if one is fashion obsessed or more importantly price conscious. The sale markdown on hot ticket items and name brands is r to the i to the d – ridiculous.
It makes me wish I could do the whole holiday gift exchange after the holidays because here is where the bargains are.
Hello and happy Friday, Friends and Followers. If you are new to the Blog Dot Com, then this post may alarm you. Do not worry. I have not lost my mind (completely!) Links. Likes. Loves is a global Friday and Weekend bit us Bloggers like to do to link you up with our favorite news, stories, videos, sales, etc from the week. It is a quick rundown of things you may have missed that caught our eye and we want to share. No, it is not me losing my mind.
The Last Time I did one, my dear Grandma (Hi, Meema!) who is a fan of the Blog, called me to ask if I was okay and why was I writing in incomplete thoughts. I am okay. We will be okay. It is Friday! So, here we go. My favorite Links. Likes. Loves. that you may have missed this week.
Our December calendar is pretty loaded down. We have work parties (yes, plural) and friendly get-togethers. We have family gatherings and then we have our full list of holiday must-dos such as a Holiday Light Car Tour, Visit with Santa, one last shopping trip, and the Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony (yes, that is a thing in our home). You see, all these things add up and before you know it you heading out the door to a holiday party and in complete scramble mode. If you are like me, you are begging your husband to make a quick run to pick up a bottle of wine for the hostess. But, here is the things, so is every other person heading to the same exact party as you.
Be different. Be bold. Make a statement this holiday party. And, if you make a really big impact, heck, you may just get invited back next year!
Continuing with my 2016 Gift Guide, I present to you Gift Ideas for Him. The absolute hardest Gift Guide to create. Am I right or am I right? I think I am right! Now my dear Hubby would tell you it is quite the opposite. That I am indeed the hardest to buy for and I always reply, “But, I am so easy!” And, yet he says the same thing when talking about himself. However, I do believe he is beginning to realize how hard he is to buy for on all levels and that means for me, his own mother, my mother, etc. He even says things now like, “Since I am so hard to buy for, I like this.” Or will even go as far as buying items for himself while shopping for others and say, “Here give this to your Mom or my Mom to give to me.” What fun is that?
Thinking maybe I am not the only one out there struggling to figure out what to buy the men in our lives, here are my top 2016 Gift Ideas for Him! And, don’t worry, Nathan, I did not reveal anything for you.
So, Popsugar did it yet again! They sent me their November Must Have Box and there is a serious theme here… must have. Popsugar is pretty much my virtual / mailing BFF. I was super skeptical when I signed up to receive their Must Have monthly boxes. I really thought I was going to get a box full of “junk.” I know, hold yourself back from how you really feel. But, truly, I thought I would give it a try and either donate or re-gift the inside surprises.
Boy was I wrong. Two for two, Popsugar, very nice.
This month featured a “Gather Together” theme which included This Kendra Scott bracelet that I cannot stop crushing after and These cute Meri Meri decor sticks, that Lo cannot keep her hands off of.VIEW STORY »
The most underrated tradition of Christmas… the stocking. So much emphasis is placed on the gifts under the tree that we tend to overthink the stocking. Maybe we just cram the “smallerish” items into the stocking when we are exhausted and don’t feel like wrapping any more, or, maybe we just use the stocking for a candy jar and pile in the chocolate and sweets.
I personally find the stocking to be such a fun, little extra tradition, and do you know the origins date back to a widowed man who feared his impoverished status would prevent his three daughter’s from marrying? Yes, for real! The story goes that on Christmas Eve, their stockings hung by the fire to dry and Saint Nicholas knowing the father’s humbleness, placed gold coins in the stockings, setting the family into a better financial place. Huh? All of this excitement today over a tradition that began with drying socks. Here are more stories and traditions from the Christmas Stocking.