Friday Favorites: Makeup Favorites

Friday Favorites: Makeup Favorites

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I am linking up with AndreaErika and Narci to share my Five Friday Favorites again this week!

(P.S. Andrea was kind enough to post about Nora’s fundraiser this week on her blog! Check it out HERE!)

I am keeping this post light today and sharing with you my five favorite makeup items! I actually had a hard time picking just five, even though I don’t wear a ton of makeup — but the five listed here would be the ones I put at the top of my list:

1) Too Faced Amazing Face Oil-Free Liquid Foundation

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Of course, they are discontinuing my favorite foundation as far as I can tell since both Ulta and Sephora have stopped selling it, but nevertheless, it is my favorite so I’m sharing it with you! I had my makeup done at Sephora about a month ago, and I will be switching to Marc Jacobs Genius Gel Super-Charged Oil-Free Foundation, which I really like too. But, you can still grab this Too-Faced foundation on sale HERE. This foundation has awesome coverage and keeps shine away for longer than any other foundation I have tried!

2) Too Faced Shadow Insurance Primer

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I have been using this primer for a couple of years now, and I really love it! This little tube goes a LONG way, since you don’t need to use much of it per application. It prevents crease in your eye shadow, and it also really brings out the true color of the eye shadow that you are wearing. It also helps your eye shadow stay on longer, overall. I definitely recommend using a primer underneath your shadow to make the time you spend putting on your makeup worth it!

(I also loooooove Too Faced’s Primed and Poreless Primer for my face. It makes my foundation last a lot longer! Yes, I know, I am cheating by throwing in a sixth item to my five favorites this week — oops!)

3) Urban Decay Naked3 Eye Shadow

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I just purchased this eye shadow compact  about a month ago, and I am loving the many color options! I love the shimmer in a lot of the colors and I like that I can pick a completely different color combination every single day! You can’t beat the variety for the price. And, this compact will last me for literally forever! The eye shadow stays on well (paired with the primer I use above), and the colors come out true.

4) Cover Girl Lash Blast Fusion Mascara

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Cover Girl has been my favorite mascara for years and years. I loved the regular Lash Blast when it came out, but now my favorite is the Lash Blast Fusion. It gives you both length and volume, and it doesn’t clump! I have tried many different mascaras, and I have always had an issue with them clumping. I have longer eye-lashes, so the length isn’t a huge issue for me, but I just really love this mascara and keep coming back to it as my favorite.

5) Sephora Ultra Shine Lip Gloss

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My favorite lip gloss is Sephora’s Ultra Shine Lip Gloss. It lasts long enough for me and I love so many of the color options. I also love the price point!

I hope you are having a great Friday!

xo,

Abby

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Friday Favorites: My Organization Inspiration

Friday Favorites: My Organization Inspiration

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I am linking up with AndreaErika and Narci to share my Five Friday Favorites again this week!

It is no secret that I love to organize. (If you didn’t know that you should check out these posts here, here and here.) It is something that I have actually always enjoyed even since being a little girl! Okay, so for real — my mom used to let me stay up late and help her organize a closet or two once in a while, and I literally thought I was in heaven. Now, before you think I’m crazy, I will tell you that being organized has saved me so much time and effort. I am not looking for things that are lost (well, since having kids this has changed a little!), and I know that everything has a place. It also helps when I am cleaning, because picking up toys, and putting away towels all goes a little more quickly when you know where they are supposed to go! It takes effort and motivation to get and stay organized, BUT, it is so worth it.

Feeling motivated yet? Here are my favorite organization inspiration sites/places/people — check them out and I bet you will be on a mission to organize something this weekend! (Oh, and it’s garage sale season! I have seen a lot of advertised garage sales that are selling used organizational items for less — definitely something to check out!)

1) Pinterest

pinterestPinterest is genius for many reasons, but I love how inspired I am after I spend some time pinning. I know that Pinterest can be overwhelming and can even make you feel like you are so behind and stressed out, but, I think if you use it the correct way, it can be really, really helpful! I love to think creatively when I can, and Pinterest has been a really awesome tool for me. Feel free to follow me over there, as many of my pins involve organization, but search around and I know you will find some great ideas that will work for you on your organization mission!

2) Real Simple Magazine

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If you want to physically read something that has great, simple organizational tips, I really highly recommend this magazine! I have been subscribed to Real Simple for a few years now, and I always get an idea or inspiration out of each issue. Not every issue is geared towards organization, like the one I showed you here, but, they all have sections with tips on organizing and even how to make use out of the simple things that you already have in your home. The magazine also offers good cleaning tips and even beauty tips, which have nothing to do with organization, but I’m a girl and still enjoy growing my lip gloss collection! Their motto is: “Life made easier.” I can get on board with that!

3) Blogs & Social Media

I have a few bloggers, as well as a few Instagram accounts that I follow, that really give me some great ideas when it comes to organization. A lot of these I stumbled on through Pinterest, and then began following their blogs and social media. Some of these bloggers are: IHeart Organizing, A Bowl Full of Lemons and Honey We’re Home. There are so many gifted people out there — I guarantee you can use at least one of their ideas, or even one of mine, to start with and then make it your own! The internet can be a really useful thing — use it!!

4) Catalogs

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These are a FREE way to get inspiration! I love looking through these catalogs each time they are sent out. They give me ideas, and even if that particular company has something I can’t afford at the moment, or doesn’t quite fit the space I need it for — it still inspires me! I get endless ideas on how to organize the kids’ rooms, the playroom, our bedroom, the kitchen pantry…everything. I only end up a little envious of the completely clean and clutter-free rooms that they photograph! 😉

5) Store Browsing

Once you have exhausted your internet and magazine browsing, hit up some actual stores for ideas! My favorites are Target,  TJMaxx/Marshalls, The Container Store, Crate & Barrel and Ikea. Places like Ikea are GREAT for inspiration because they actually have rooms on display that are neat and organized. The Container Store is genius, because they pretty much have something for everything that you could ever think of that would need to be organized. Endless options. Target and TJMaxx are great because they have really cost-effective solutions for organization. Target and The Container Store also have great websites that offer more options than the actual store carries. I also like to compare almost everything to Amazon’s prices…because that’s what I do. Amazon Prime is the bomb.com.

I hope these are helpful tips to get you started! I have been thinking about writing some more specific organization posts — what do you think? Would you find that useful?

Happy Weekend!

xo,

Abby

Looking for more?

Downstairs Playroom

Kids’ Bathroom: Re-do!

Simple Pantry Storage

Friday Favorites: Favorite Worship Songs

Friday Favorites: Favorite Worship Songs

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I am linking up with AndreaErika and Narci to share my Five Friday Favorites again this week! I LOVE music and I love the way it can have such an influence on your entire mood. I am a former violinist, and I can attest to the fact that music is such a powerful thing! I have really been trying lately to make sure my mind is in the right place, and uplifting worship music can help get my heart and my mind where it should be (although, don’t get me wrong — I still love some Taylor Swift mixed in there!).

In the past couple of weeks, I used our Amazon credits, (If you have an Amazon Prime membership, you are able to choose free standard shipping on items instead of the two-day shipping that is included with prime, and you are credited a $1.00 to use on e-Books, digital music and videos. It’s awesome.) to buy a bunch of worship music that I had been waiting to purchase. I wanted to share with you my current five favorite worship songs — check them out if you are looking for some new music!

1) Waiting Here For You – Christy Nockels

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“Waiting here for you
With our hands lifted high in praise
And it’s you we adore
Singing Alleluia”

2) Oceans (Where Feet May Fail) – Hillsong United

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“Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior”

3) Glorious Day (Living He Loved Me) – Casting Crowns

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“And living, He loved me
Dying, He saved me
Buried, He carried my sins far away

Rising, He justified freely forever
One day He’s coming
Oh, glorious day, oh, glorious day”

(Note: If you have an Amazon Prime membership, you can stream this song for free!)

4) Jesus, Son of God – Chris Tomlin with Christy Nockels

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“On the altar of your praise, let there be no higher name
Jesus, Son of God
You laid down Your perfect life
You are the sacrifice
Jesus, Son of God
You are Jesus, Son of God”

5) Your Great Name – Natalie Grant

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“Jesus, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain for us, Son of God and Man 

You are high and lifted up; and all the world will praise Your Great Name”

What are you listening to these days? I would love suggestions for new music!

xo,

Abby

Friday Favorites: All About Gavyn

Friday Favorites: All About Gavyn

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I am linking up with AndreaErika and Narci to share my Five Friday Favorites again this week!

You will have to excuse me as I will likely be sobbing through this entire post, but our little baby boy is turning one next week (how did that happen!?)! In honor of his birthday, my Friday Favorites are all about him this week! I’ve said this many times before, but I’ll say it again — Gavyn is such a joy and truly the perfect little man for our family. God had such a grand plan when He brought him into our lives and I will be forever thankful for the blessing he is in our family.

1)

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I adore this picture of Gavyn from his newborn shoot — He was so cooperative for his pictures (unlike his sister who screamed through most of hers!), and this picture really captures what Gavyn was like as a newborn! He loved to sleep and he did a lot of it! Gavyn arrived 10 days earlier than anticipated (Madalyn was almost 7 days late, so I was totally anticipating the same for this little guy), and his birth was such a whirlwind compared to my first. I had high hopes that my second birth would go more quickly than the first, and it definitely did! Gavyn was born within a couple of hours of getting to the hospital, and holding him for the first time was just as wonderful as it was to hold Maddy for the first time.

This picture makes me all kinds of weepy, as we get ready to celebrate him turning one.

2)

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Speaking of sleep…someone was getting in a solid nap right here! It is rare that Gavyn will fall asleep on me now. He is too busy wanting to explore and move around! I definitely miss those moments of his sweet, sound sleeping on my chest. I realize that we are super blessed to have had a good baby that loved his sleep, and we definitely didn’t take that for granted. As he grew and started the awful journey called “teething”, sleep didn’t always stay great, but we are on track for now. Gavyn still takes between one and two naps a day, and sleeps through the night. Mama and Dada are super happy about that!  There is just something undeniably precious about newborns, and while I’m biased, Gavyn was one of the sweetest ones there ever was.

3)

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Gavyn is about five months old here, and I can’t help but smile every time I see this picture! Partially because there is no way he would be sitting still in a little basket now, but also because his little grin here is adorable. I have to say, as much as dressing Madalyn up in dresses and bows is definitely where I thrive, dressing Gavyn up in little button-down shirts and jeans is also oh-so-sweet. Even ironing those little shirts seems sweet instead of a chore!

4)

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Gavyn was a “monster” for Halloween, and his first birthday party will carry on that theme. (Speaking of, I have tons of blog posts coming your way about his birthday party and planning, but I am not going to post them until his party is done! I can’t wait to show you what we have been up to, though, so just hang tight for a bit.) Gavyn has such a sweet personality, and this picture shows his joy!

5)

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I started taking monthly pictures of Madalyn when she was born, until she turned one year old, and carried on the same tradition with Gavyn. We sit them in the same chair, holding the same chalkboard so that we can really see how much they grown and change month-to-month. It really is crazy to watch! These pictures have gotten more difficult as Gavyn has become mobile, but I am so glad we snapped these each month.

I have lots and lots (and lots!) of party prep to get to this weekend! What are you up to? Happy Friday!

xo,

Abby

Friday Favorites: Favorite Toddler Apps

Friday Favorites: Favorite Toddler Apps

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I am linking up with AndreaErika and Narci to share my Five Friday Favorites again this week! So, I have a toddler. And while we do limit the use of technology with her, the iPad has to be one of the greatest inventions ever, in terms of keeping a toddler occupied for a period of time long enough to get something else done! With that being said, I wanted to share what my favorite Apps are for a toddler. I have not done extensive research on this topic, but just thought it would be fun to share what Madalyn loves and hopefully give you other mamas out there a few ideas.

1) Watch & Find – VeggieTales

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Maddy loves music and VeggieTales so this App is a really fun one! The game shows you little clips of songs and you have to find certain things on the screen before they disappear. I wouldn’t say this is the most educational of games, but I love the message behind the VeggieTales movies and the songs are super catchy! Even if your toddler can’t play the game correctly, it is still fun.

2) The Boynton Collection

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Sandra Boynton is probably my favorite kids’ book author. Her books rhyme, have great illustrations and are short enough to keep younger children entertained. This App has a few of her most popular books included: “Blue Hat, Green Hat”, “Moo, Baa, La La La!”, “Barnyard Dance!” and “The Going to Bed Book.” We actually have all four of these board books, but this App is fun for on-the-go. It reads the book aloud and the App is interactive, so the animals make noises, and move around, etc. This is not a free App, but in my opinion, was worth the price!

3) Owlegories

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This is a really fun free App that helps children learn about God through His creation and discover interesting facts about nature. Owlegories focuses on the amazing things found in creation as an analogy of the different characteristics of God found in the Bible. It is also full of fun animations and interactions, as well as lots of Bible verses. Maddy really enjoys this one!

4) Fisher Price Laugh & Learn: Animal Sounds for Baby

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This App is probably a little on the younger baby/toddler age side. Maddy still enjoys it, but she liked it a lot better a year and a half ago. Fisher Price actually makes a lot of pretty neat Apps — all of the Storybook ones are also favorites around here. The best part is that they are free! This App encourages babies to learn animal names and sounds and is also interactive. If you happen to have a kiddo that is really into animals, this would be a great App for them!

5) Disney Junior Minnie Mouseke-Puzzles

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If you have a little girl really into Disney Junior and Minnie Mouse, this App is a really great one! There are various levels of difficulty for each puzzle in this App, and I like it because it really does make Maddy concentrate and think. Her puzzle building skills have really improved since playing with this App occasionally! 

What are your favorite Apps? I am always looking for new ideas! Happy Weekend!

xo,

Abby

 

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Friday Favorites: Favorite Cleaning Tools & Products

Friday Favorites: Costco Favorites   

Friday Favorites: Favorite Cleaning Tools and Products

Friday Favorites: Favorite Cleaning Tools and Products

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I am linking up with AndreaErika and Narci to share my Five Friday Favorites again this week! When I think about this week, I think about cleaning and organizing, because that is a lot of what my week has consisted of. What goes better with spring than some spring cleaning?! I thought I would share my five favorite cleaning products/tools with you, today.

1) Seventh Generation Disinfecting Wipes

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These wipes have become my fast favorite lately. They are great for disinfecting and cleaning toys! I prefer them to the Clorox wipes because these are naturally made and they are safe for food surfaces (you don’t even need to rinse the surface after using them), which means I don’t have to worry about them being safe on toys. They are also super reasonably priced for what you get! With all of winter’s lingering germs, these are still a must-have in my home for now.

2) Bona Mop

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This is my go-to mop for cleaning our floors. I purchased this when we had laminate flooring and it works SO much better than a Swiffer! It sprays easier and covers more territory. I also like that the pads are washable — it’s a one-time expense, instead of having to continually purchase the disposable pads. Now that we have hardwood floors, I still love it! You can buy a cleaning solution made for laminate/tile and hardwood, so either way you are set to go. I am super happy with how this cleans the floors too, and with little effort!

3) Dyson Vacuum

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I never would have believed it if someone had told me a Dyson vacuum was worth the money. Until now. I bought one last year and was proven wrong! This vacuum was a game changer for me. It works great on both hardwood surfaces and carpeting. We had an issue with the cord on our vacuum and found that they have a great warranty, too. It’s light enough to carry up and down stairs and the suction is as strong now as it was when we first got it! I seriously believe this vacuum is worth every penny. 

4) Vinegar

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I use vinegar for soooo many different things — to really scrub floors, clean up in the kitchen, bathroom, etc. This spray has made my life a lot more easy! I really detest the smell of vinegar, however, so check out #5 for what I’m trying more of now.

5) Essential Oils

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I am still a relatively new essential oils user — I signed up with Young Living last fall and have been super pleased with everything that I have tried! (I would love to help you get more information on any essential oils if you have any questions, just send me an email to: simplybeingabby@gmail.com.) We have used Thieves to help get rid of germs, we have used Lemon & Purification for congestion and coughs, and I have also used Purification to help get rid of odors (just to name a few).  I have started experimenting with using Purification for odors (like in dishwasher or laundry machine), and you can make a Thieves cleaner that smells so good and is super safe and effective. I envision these oils will continue to creep into my cleaning routine more and more often as I get more familiar with their uses.

Happy Easter Weekend!

xo,

Abby

Friday Favorites: Favorite Easter Basket Picks!

Friday Favorites: Favorite Easter Basket Picks!

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I am linking up with AndreaErika and Narci to share my Five Friday Favorites again this week! Easter is right around the corner, so I am sharing my five favorite Easter basket picks this year:

1) Peek-A-Whoo Personalized Bunnies

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Both Madalyn and Gavyn are receiving a Jellycat Bunny with their names on the ear! These bunnies are so cute and if I hadn’t waited until the last second to order them, I would have a picture of the actual ones they are getting to show you…but they are on their way here, as we speak! I know these bunnies will be something that they both treasure for a long time.

While it is too late to order these for Easter this year, check out the Peek-A-Whoo site, because they monogram these and other things all year-long!

2) Green Toys

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I am loving all of the Green Toys products! We gave Gavyn the Dump Truck and Recycling Truck (purchased at Costco together as a set for an amazing deal, of course) at Christmas. Madalyn has the Tea Set and Pizza Parlor and I love them both! For Easter, Gavyn is getting this Fire Truck. These toys are super well made and durable, and they are made out of recycled milk jugs! I also like that they are simple toys that don’t make noise. They help foster more creativity and they don’t drive me insane with an annoying song or noise! For the quality, they are fairly priced and if you are lucky to catch them at Costco or as an Amazon Deal-of-the-Day they are super reasonable! They have lots of options for both boys and girls, and I have been super impressed with the ones we have so far. So fun!

3) Disney Princess Enchanted Dress

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Madalyn is going to be SO excited to see this Rapunzel dress in her Easter basket! Maddy is super into dressing up these days, so we thought this would be a fitting Easter basket item. In my quick search, Walmart.com has the best price on this dress, even though I am usually Amazon-loyal. 🙂 It was actually around $12.00 when we bought it, so check out their site! Many of the other Disney princess dresses were on sale, too. Madalyn looooves the movie “Tangled” (she was just singing “I See the Light” at the top of her lungs before nap time…), and this dress will definitely be exciting for her!

P.S. I can’t speak to the quality of the dress, yet, but for $12 and for dress-up purposes, I am thinking it will be just great!

4) Disney Movies

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Speaking of Disney, we have a slight Disney movie obsession going on around here lately. Madalyn is so into Tinkerbell lately, so she is getting the Tinkerbell movie in her basket! Gavyn is getting Cars 2, although, I think Madalyn will be more excited about it than him!

If you haven’t heard of Disney Movie Rewards, you need to head over and sign up! You enter the codes that come with your Disney movies and the accumulate points for you. We have already earned two free movies just from entering the codes on movies that we already had. Super easy and totally worth it!

5) Starburst Jelly Beans: FaveReds

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Easter wouldn’t be Easter without a little bit of candy…for me, that is! These are my absolute favorite Easter candy. I am not big into any other Jelly Beans but these are seriously perfection. And to top it all off, I love all of the three flavors so I don’t even have to pick through to find the best ones!

On a serious note, I hope you are all ready for the week to come as we prep are hearts and minds for what Jesus did for us. This time of year is so important and in the midst of Easter baskets and family celebrations, let’s not forget what an amazing thing our Savior did for us!

xo,

Abby