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The My Burberry Perfume Is an Unlikely Cool Weather Winner

Posted on Nov 26, 2014 by No Comments

I wasn’t looking for a new perfume, but I was floored by the sample I got in the mail from Sephora.

This isn’t even my usual type of scent—and definitely not something I would normally go for in the fall or winter—but there’s something about it that grabbed my attention and led me out to buy a bottle.

It’s a floral with a green tinge, not the heavy, sweet, oriental type that’s usually so popular this time of year. With notes like sweet pea, bergamot, freesia, and roses, you’d expect this to be much better-suited for the spring and summer.

It may be the patchouli—which is barely detectable, if at all—adds weight that makes it feel perfect for the fall and winter, or to be paired with the trench coat that inspired the scent.

Even if you don’t typically like Burberry fragrances, this may be worth trying if you’re looking for a scent that’s more classically beautiful than dark and mysterious. It’s supposed to smell like a gorgeous London garden after it’s rained, and I think it gets pretty close (though I’ve never been to London).

If I had to describe the scent with a color, it’d be the same golden shades the leaves turn in the autumn.

Though I’m more concerned with the scent inside, I won’t say that a pretty bottle doesn’t make a perfume more attractive to me. This one is a cute, simple, cube-shaped bottle, but the lid itself is a heavy tortoiseshell knob. The golden-taupe ribbon is a special accent that gives it an extra edge of sophistication.

One more plus for this scent: It lasts a long time. When I tried the sample in the middle of the day, I could still smell it the next morning. A little also goes a long way, too, so a one-ounce bottle ($72), is probably enough to last several months, even with everyday wear.

Photo credit: Sephora

Link Round-up: Thanksgiving Snacks, DIY Dusters, Cheeseburger Soup, and More

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 by No Comments

Today’s link round-up has a Thanksgiving-inspired snack, DIY Swiffer dusters, cheeseburger soup, and activities for the kids.

Our Secondhand House taught us how to make our own Swiffer dusters.

Belle of the Kitchen shared a Crockpot cheeseburger soup recipe.

The Sunny Patch shared some breakfast ideas that don’t require any special ingredients.

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Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons showed us how to put together Thanksgiving mini donut and pretzel treats.

Domestic Mommyhood showed us how to make reusable dryer sheets.

JDaniel4’s Mom shared a science project that involves M&M’s.

Kids’ Activities Blog shared 100 sight word activities.

Photo credit: Our Secondhand House and Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons

The Whatever After Series by Sarah Mlynowski Is Cute, Fun, and Based on Fairy Tales

Posted on Nov 24, 2014 by No Comments

Looking for a new spin on fairy tales for your kids to enjoy? If you decide to read these to your kids, you’ll probably find yourself really enjoying them, too.

The Whatever After series by Sarah Mlynowski is only six books long at the moment (the sixth, Cold as Ice, is available for pre-order), but I hope it continues for a while!

My daughter and I are on the third one in the series. In each story, 10-year-old Abby and her little brother, Jonah, are taken into a fairy tale through a magic mirror in their basement.

They usually try not to influence the stories, but it never works and they find themselves trying to fix everything so the stories get back on track and play out the way they know they’re supposed to. In some cases, you get the original ending; in others, not so much.

These are fun, quick chapter book reads that aren’t easy to put down. The first time I picked one up, I read it out loud until my throat hurt, took a break, then read some more. Every night I read part of one to my daughter, she begs me to continue. One chapter can easily turn into two or three, if not four.

Book one is all about Snow White. Book two is Cinderella’s story with an interesting twist. Book three is all about The Little Mermaid. Based on the titles (since I haven’t read them yet), it looks like four is Sleeping Beauty, five is Rapunzel, and six is inspired by Frozen.

These books are appropriate for boys or girls. If you plan to read them out loud, ages six and up would probably enjoy them. If you’re getting them for your son or daughter to read on their own, I would wait until age seven or eight, and think kids through age 12 may enjoy them.

Photo credit: Amazon

Bath & Body Works’ New Scent, Wild Madagascar Vanilla, Isn’t the Bakery Scent You Might Expect

Posted on Nov 21, 2014 by No Comments

The name, Wild Madagascar Vanilla, doesn’t exactly call fruits and florals to mind. Instead, bakery sweet gourmand fragrances come to mind.

As usual, I started with the lotion on this scent, but I wouldn’t mind going back for more products because layering it would intensify the fragrance. I’ve already gotten compliments on the lotion, though, so the fragrance is still noticeable even without layering.

There’s definitely vanilla here, but instead of being combined with other sweet notes so it smells like cakes and pastries, it’s combined with African pear, clementine, ruby apple, jasmine, gardenia, heliotrope, golden plumeria, sandalwood, and creamy musk for a more complex sweet scent highlighted by fruits and florals (mostly florals, to my nose).

If you’re familiar with other Bath & Body Works scents, this one is more Forever Red or Cashmere Glow than Vanilla Bean Noel or Warm Vanilla Sugar. It’s warm and cozy so it’s wearable for daytime, but it’s also good for date nights and cuddling up with your spouse in the evenings.

The scent lasts almost all day, but it’s faded to almost nothing by bedtime, so that’s where the layering would be nice. If you like the scent and happen to catch a special, I recommend stocking up and getting the shower gel and a fragrance mist.

As expected, this lotion soaked in and moisturized my skin well, but the moisture didn’t last all day. My skin was dry and itchy again within a few hours, so I would use this more for the fragrance than the moisture if your skin is already pretty dry.

Photo credit: Bath & Body Works

Link Round-up: Mimosas, DIY Christmas Ornaments, Gift Guides, and More

Posted on Nov 20, 2014 by No Comments

Today’s link round-up has tips to make Christmastime easier, a mimosa recipe, tips for making Christmas ornaments, and more.

A Beautiful Mess shared a recipe for Prosecco and cranberry mimosas.

Kids’ Activities Blog shared tips for making the holiday season easier.

How Does She shared a gift guide for families.

Olivia Cleans Green taught us how to make raw energy bars.

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Muslin and Merlot shared a how-to for a framed hemp photo board.

Pizzazzerie taught us how to make mini caramel apple crisp donuts.

Crafts ‘n Coffee taught us how to make a classic Christmas ornament using fabric and foam balls.

Photo credit: A Beautiful Mess and Muslin and Merlot

Link Round-up: Christmas Wreath, Floral Drawer Sachets, a Snowflake Light-up Marquee, and More

Posted on Nov 18, 2014 by 1 Comment

Today’s link round-up has a covered button Christmas wreath, an easy no-sew floral drawer sachets, a giant snowflake light-up marquee, and more.

Olivia Cleans Green shared a tutorial for an easy no-sew floral drawer sachet.

Kids’ Activities Blog showed us some ideas for DIY toys.

How Does She shared a Thanksgiving Mad Lib exclusive free printable.

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A Beautiful Mess showed us how to make a giant snowflake light-up marquee.

Pizzazzerie shared some ideas for Christmas hostess gifts.

Crafts ‘n Coffee showed us a way to make a button ornament.

Create Craft Love showed us how to make a covered button Christmas wreath.

Photo credit: Olivia Cleans Green and A Beautiful Mess

Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lashes Mascara from Younique Really Is Phenomenal

Posted on Nov 17, 2014 by No Comments

It took me a long time to finally be convinced to try the Younique Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lashes, but a friend of mine kept posting about them and I decided to go for it. I had all the excuses in the book not to try it: sensitive eyes, negative past experiences with fiber mascaras in the past, etc.

There was also the cost to consider, plus the fact that I can’t just go to the drugstore or the mall to pick up a replacement when the mascara dries out or I run out of fibers. There are plenty of cons to this product, but the effect makes it so easy to ignore them.

The first time I tried it (and all the subsequent applications), I was floored by how black and thick my lashes looked. It truly is the same effect I get with false lashes, but with much less aggravation.

There’s no glue, no worries about them lifting throughout the day or night out, and it’s not very likely that the mascara will rip my natural lashes out (I haven’t noticed them falling out, either).

There’s not as much fallout of the fibers as I expected, either. I’ve had regular mascaras flake and look worse than this, and if you’re diligent about applying the transplanting gel, you’re much less likely to see any little black fibers on your cheeks.

The mascara’s effect lasts all day, and even into the next morning if you’re terrible about washing your makeup off at night.

Application takes a little while, but again, if you want dramatic lashes, it’s worth it. You don’t have to put a thin coat of your regular mascara on first, but I always do (I just use one of the Great Lash mascaras from Maybelline). Then you put on a layer of transplanting gel, then the fibers, then another layer of transplanting gel.

You can do another coat of the fibers followed by one more coat of transplanting gel if you’d like, but I don’t see a huge difference when I do that. If necessary, you then comb your lashes to get the separation you want.

The set comes in a cute little box that reminds me of the case you get with a pair of designer eyeglasses or sunglasses. That makes it easy to keep the two tubes together and helps you avoid needing to look for two different tubes in a drawer each morning.

Photo credit: Younique

The Old Navy Girls Glitter-Pocket Fleece Dress Is Cozy and Cute

Posted on Nov 14, 2014 by No Comments

My daughter loves wearing dresses, but it’s sometimes difficult to find dresses that are warm, good for playing, and cute enough to meet her approval.

This one’s a winner. I want one for myself.

This one’s got the warmth and coziness of fleece, a decent length (it hits right around knee level), and the glittery front pocket and drop-waist details get the girly-girl seal of approval. It’s fitted, but not tight, and there’s plenty of room for her to move around and enjoy recess.

The only downside to the design is the sleeve length. For a dress that seems designed for warmth, a full-length sleeve would make more sense than the three-quarter length sleeve this one has. They’re dolman style, which adds to the roominess and comfort, but could be uncomfortable under some jackets.

My daughter wore her jean jacket over hers this morning without complaint, but it’s worth mentioning as a potential drawback.

All in all, the dress is still a cute option for cool weather, but it may not be perfect when the temperatures drop too low. Paired with leggings and some boots, it’s good for fall and spring (and even winter in some areas).

This dress is available in black and gray in sizes XS to XXL, and it’s 60 percent cotton, 40 percent polyester. The regular price is $22.94, but it’s currently marked down to $16.00. If you have any additional coupons for the holidays, this could be a steal, but even at the regular price, it’s not a bad deal.

Photo credit: Old Navy

Link Round-up: Cakes, Snowglobes, Kid-Friendly Meals, and More

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 by No Comments

Today’s link round-up has a birthday cake idea, must-haves for work-at-home moms, mason jar snowglobes, and more.

Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons showed us how to make an easy Minecraft birthday party cake.

A Mom’s Take shared four reasons pictures are important.

Hungry Happenings taught us how to make chocolate Thanksgiving turkey truffles.

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Homemade Interest made kid-friendly spinach lasagna roll-ups.

Happy Mothering shared five must-have items for moms who work from home.

A Dose of Paige showed us how to make mason jar snowglobes.

Robyn’s View showed us how to make infused water.

Photo credit: Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons and Homemade Interest