Saturday, January 30, 2016

Weekend Notes.

considering the return to the blogging world.

loving when patagonia has a major sale.

proud of myself for remembering to go to chickfila before the clock strikes sunday.

tomorrow shall be dedicated to a little R&R in anticipation of our first full week of school in what feels like 300 years.

netflix is literally everything to me.

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Saturday, April 25, 2015

Product Review: Dessange Paris

*Note: I received these products complimentary from Influenster for sample/review purposes.

A few weeks ago I received some Dessange Paris products from Influenster.  I was so excited to receive full size product to sample!  I hadn't heard of Dessange before but am always up for trying something new in my hair.

First of all, I love the packaging.  It's sleek and has a very "professional" look to it.  I received the "oleo miracle" version (they have other styles, such as one for blonde hair and color repair) of the shampoo, conditioner and replenishing oil.  The oleo miracle is designed for over processed and damaged hair.

While using this product in the shower, the shampoo did not lather as thickly as my Pantene normally does.  I tend to prefer a thick lather because somehow I feel like then I know I reached all of my hair with the shampoo.  The conditioner made my hair feel really smooth.  After I applied the conditioner, I put my hair up and let it just sit for a couple of minutes, then I rinsed.

When I got out of the shower, I ran a wide tooth comb through my hair with no issues!  Tangle-free.  After getting dressed (this is my normal routine, to get dressed before blow drying) I put some of the replenishing oil into my hair.  This was the only thing I was confused about -- is it supposed to go on before or after blow drying!?  Typically I am a "blow dry and go" type of person, especially when my hair is long like it was when using this product.  My hair was damp/half dry when I applied it and I think that was fine.  I added a little bit more after I blow dried to try and smooth everything out.  It made my hair look really nice and shiny.  Overall my hair felt and looked good and soft.

Overall I really liked the Dessange products except for one thing: the smell.  Personally, I was not a fan of the way it smells.  It has a scent similar to perfume/cologne and it is pretty strong.  I am more of a fan of fruity/floral scents in my shampoos - for example, I love how all of the Pantene products smell.  I have read that some people really like the smell, so you will have to go see for yourselves!

I would definitely consider buying this again, especially since it can be found at Target, but only if it were on sale!  These bottles run about $10 each, which is much more than I typically spend on shampoo/conditioner.

Anyone else tried the Dessange line?

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Saturday, April 11, 2015

2015 :: Running to Honor our Heroes

Most of you know that I am a runner.  I ran my first "race" when I was probably 8 years old or so.  My Dad was a big runner and he got me into it at an early age.  I enjoy running because it's a physical, emotional, and mental release for me.  It also keeps me in relatively good shape and allows me to set goals for myself.

At the Runner's World Half Marathon in Bethlehem, PA

In 2013 I set a goal for myself: run a marathon.  In November, my older brother (slash trusty running partner) and I completed the Richmond Marathon.  It was one of the best runs of my life!

Richmond Marathon, November 2013

After that, running sort of got placed on the back burner because grad school and "life" became a first priority for me.  However, I have learned a lesson the hard way that my health and fitness cannot be put on the back burner.  I know that I deserved a little break after the marathon - especially because I hate running in the cold/snow, which is what we got that following winter - but I should have jumped right back into half marathons.

This all leads me to my new goal in 2015: run my second marathon.
Even though I will be starting my first big girl full-time teaching job this fall, I have told myself that that is no excuse for not setting health and fitness goals for myself.  I need to learn how to balance my work life and my personal life.  I might as well start now.

When I got to thinking about what marathon I wanted to run, two came to mind.  The Richmond Marathon and the Marine Corps Marathon.  I loved running Richmond and told myself that I would love to do it again and try and improve my time on the course.  The MCM is appealing for two reasons.  The first being that it is the only marathon my Dad ever ran.  I have always wanted to run it because he has run it.  The second reason is that I love running in northern Virginia.  I have run a couple of races in various cities and have loved them all.  It's so gorgeous!

In the end, I chose to run the Marine Corps Marathon.  However, there's more.
In case you aren't familiar, the MCM holds a lottery because it's extremely popular.  I entered the lottery earlier in March and later found out that I was not selected.  I was bummed and thought maybe that was a sign I shouldn't run it this year.

Next, I got on the MCM Facebook page and saw a mention of one of the charity partners, Fisher House, recruiting people who hadn't received a lottery spot.  I went to their website and read about their mission.  Fisher House has a network of housing locations across the nation where they offer free lodging for military families in order for them to be close to a loved one who is receiving treatment.  They also have a program called Hotels for Heroes, which is made possible by donated hotel points and provides free hotel lodging for military families, and Hero Miles, made possible by donated frequent flier miles and provides free airline tickets for military families traveling to be closer to their service member who is receiving treatment in another part of the country.

Long story short, I felt drawn to this cause and I wanted to help.  Yes, I was excited to learn that they still had spots available for their MCM team, but even more so I was excited about the opportunity to be able to run for more than myself and my own personal goals.  I will be fundraising and training for Team Fisher House and will make a difference for service members and their families.  I feel so lucky to have this opportunity and to combine my love of running with the chance to help others!

I would appreciate your support in helping me fundraise for Team Fisher House.

You can visit my personal page here!

I'll be following an 18 week plan by Hal Higdon starting in June.  Until then, pre-training begins! Wish me luck and thank you in advance for considering donating to my fundraising efforts!

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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Wishlist: Lilly Pulitzer for Target

As we all know, April 19th is the long-awaited debut of the Lilly Pulitzer for Target line and I absolutely cannot wait!  Ever since they announced the collaboration, it has been on my calendar.

Then, the lookbook came out and I have been trying to save my money because everything is so cute and so reasonably priced!  Now I'm wondering whether I'll need to set up camp outside Target...

One of the nice things about this line is that there is going to be a little bit of everything - and a little bit for everyone, except our men.  Sorry, boys.  It would have been nice if they had ties!

There are pieces for women, women's plus, girls, toddler girls, home and beauty.  The prints you see have been exclusively designed for this collaboration, so that makes these pieces even more special!

Here are some items that I have my eye on!

Lilly Pulitzer for Target

I am loving all of the new prints and ALL of the dresses are under $40!  I can definitely see myself wearing some of these when I go to the beach in July!

There are tons of home items, including plates, napkins and serving trays, that are absolutely adorable.  They even have a HAMMOCK.  Like, I have no place for a hammock, but of course it's adorable.

I'm sure these pieces aren't going to last long, so I would be sure and have an account ready on Target's website if you plan on shopping online!  Some of the pieces are online only so you won't be finding those in the store.  Also, don't forget you get 5% off when you use your Target RedCard :)
You can check out the lookbook here!
As Lilly would say, "Life is a party. Dress like it!"

Don't forget to visit my post from yesterday to win a wall print from Sweet Water Decor!
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