Favorites for the Lips

Let’s start with a moment of silence for Downton Abbey. (Don’t worry, no spoilers here for those who are still catching up.)


Alright, moving on. A few weeks ago I posted this picture on Instagram:

IMG_4488Those all came out of my “lip gloss pocket” in my purse. No wonder it weighs a ton! But I must say that I’ve gotten good use out of each of these lip products, plus a few more. So here are my favorites in order of color-ness. (I didn’t include the reds that I’ve been wearing, found in this post.)


1. I never leave the house without my Burts. Seriously, I have them tucked away all over. My purse, jacket pocket, coffee table, night stand, B-money’s back pack. (No, that last one is not a joke, there is a Burts tucked into the second pocket of his back pack.)

2. Fresh’s Sugar Rose is a great because it has a hint of color and SPF 15. Also, side note, the lid twists off. Let me save you from feeling like a momo (like me) and thinking you’re just not strong enough to get the lid off.

3. I love the smell and formula of Laura Mercier’s Lip Glace in Baby Doll. There isn’t much color, mostly shine and shimmer. But it’s not sticky and doesn’t do that funky clumpy thing on your lips or the corner of your mouth.

4. I LOVE BUTTER LONDON! I have several of their nail polishes and got this lippy in Trout Pout for my b-day. It is quite thick, so there is a reason it’s called liquid lipstick. This is a nice pale pink, more opaque than you would think for a lip gloss, and is a great color for this spring with rosy cheeks and floral prints.

5. This is one of my favorite glosses. It is Hourglass Extreme Sheen High Shine Lip Gloss in Child. Jessica Alba wore Hourglass lip gloss with her amazing coral dress at the Golden Globes this year. This actually has a little bit of color, but it’s nude and smooth and lasts way longer than most other glosses (so it’s great if your a talker like me). I like this when I just want some shine and not much color. Also, I got a mini size and so didn’t pay out the wazoo for it.

6. Tarte LipSurgence matte lip tint in Hope. I really like this one. It looks kind of purple, but is a very natural color. I think there must be mint in the formula because it is refreshing like Burts. It’s just enough color that no one would know you had it on, but you look put together. Plus no one can tell when it starts to wear off. Keep in mind that it is matte, so you may want a gloss over it.

7. Maybelline Color Whisper in Pin-up Peach. This is another one that Kate at The Small Things Blog shared. It is like a shimmery tinted balm. And I think it’s more pink than peach. This is the one I reach for when I’m in a hurry and can’t find or don’t have time to stand in front of a mirror. It’s also one that still looks good when it’s wearing off.

8. Lastly, the Sonia Kashuk lipstick in Pink Punch. I LOVE THIS. It goes on super smooth and creamy and feels like a step up from Revlon but not quite MAC. I like the pink when I want a good pop of color but red is too much or doesn’t go with what I’m wearing. (How much do I sound like I would be Cher on Clueless?) It does wear off with too much talking, but girls go to the bathroom a lot so just keep it in your pocket and you’re good to go.

Do you have any favorites right now? Are you ready to put some color on your lips?! I challenge you to try some color on your lips this week!

it’s friday

(Now that song is in your head. You’re welcome.)

I kept meaning to blog this week but ran out of steam/time everyday. My apologies. We’ve had a full week. I’m going to work my way backwards, if that’s okay with you.

Today I had an awesome run.

It was a 45 mi run: 5 blue, 35 green, 5 blue; plus some extra because I decided to run a loop rather than double back. I’m so unpredictable. I don’t even know what the heck I’m going to do until I get to a corner and have to turn left or right.

But anyway, I had a great run. I feel like running in the morning has been challenging for me, feeling empty if it was a fasting run or feeling heavy/tasting breakfast if I ate something first. Today all I had were 3 Clif Bar shot bloks and a few chugs of water. I didn’t realize it until now, but they have caffeine from green tea (I probably wouldn’t have chosen to use them had I realized it… thought it was just a bunch of sugar). They tasted good and I felt great on my run, probably due in part to them.

I did the 4.8ish mile loop in just under an hour and mostly in the green zone (i.e. slower pace). I’m wondering how tomorrow’s run will compare since it will be half green, half yellow.

I also learned some new things about the miCoach app today! If you love seeing a graph and breaking down your run, I think you should definitely give this app a try. Check out the additional notes (shown for my red zone, available for the others as well):

I ran all the way back up the steep hill, trying to maintain <12:00 mile, which naturally put me in the red zone for over 5 min. But I conquered that beast and still felt good.

Compared to last Friday’s run (slightly longer loop):

I also learned that miCoach keeps track of any songs you play (through your music player, not Pandora)! Brilliant! Not brilliant: Britney Spears feat. the Ying Yang Twins somehow always cycles through. Must remove from playlist.

I also added my new shoes to my list so they’re ready for me when I decide to take them out for a spin.

See that middle box? I made that up, I haven’t run 200 miles on a pair of shoes nicknamed BOOM. Just wanted to show you what your shoe boxes look like if you choose an Adidas brand (vs New Balance and Reebok that I have). Neat.

This week’s runs were pretty good. I think I got sprinkled on by various sprinklers at least thrice. It was nice. We leave one week from today for Panama and Guatemala for 16 days and I highly doubt I’ll be able to run there. So I’m kind of bummed and don’t want to loose any stamina I’ve built up. Just crossing my fingers that our hotel in Guatemala has a decent gym with a treadmill since, being the blonde chick that I am, I will not be running on the street alone in either country.

Yesterday I met my seester at some outlets and enjoyed a hot afternoon walking around shopping.

Wednesday was the Fourth and it was fun! We hung out with some friends, had too many watermelon cookies, ate delicious pasta for dinner, and watched some fireworks in our neighborhood. It was quite good!

Nothing happened Tuesday.

But on Monday I got to meet our new nephew, Mordecai!!!

He’s just a bundle of cuteness. So sweet and content.

Uncle Bribri is a natural.

Seriously. Does it get any cuter? He didn’t cry once.

We also hung out with Mordie’s older brother Malachi.

This little punkin head snuggled up to me while we were watching some educational cartoon that I can’t remember the name of and you probably wouldn’t know. He’s a keeper. 🙂

Since we’re leaving in a week, it’s time for me to start the annual gathering of all things mini or trial-size. New to this year’s lineup (thanks to various germaphobic friends and news segments): a small bottle of mattress cleaner.

Perhaps I’ll do an entire post on how to pack for an international soccer tour for those who don’t play soccer but have to go. No one’s blogged about that before, right?

hot night, wind was blowin

I must say, I’m quite proud of my run this morning. It was a 45 min run: 5 blue, 35 green, 5 blue, but I ran a longer loop so my run lasted just at an hour. This is the fastest I’ve run this 5.2 mile loop! I know for some people (ok, most people) this is a mediocre to moderate pace at best, but for me to maintain <12:00 pace for 5 miles is awesome! In fact, for a good bit of it, I was maintaining <10:00 pace! Knowing that the heart rate monitor requires me to slow down going up hills, I’ve been taking advantage of the down slopes and booked it at nearly a 7:00 pace a few times. That’s flying for me!

Instead of just wetting the heart rate sensors like I’ve done up until now, I decided to put some gel on it and it seemed to work fine today.

I felt pretty good today, despite the heat. I left the house before 7:20 and it was already over 80* when I got home. In fact, the hardest part of the run was coming up the 3 flights of stairs to get to our place.

The other day, I enjoyed reading out on the balcony. That wasn’t an option today. I know I’m the fajillionth person to talk about it, but dang. It got smokin’ hot today.

I got my hair done this morning, which meant showering and blow-drying my hair before I went to the salon. So basically I didn’t stop sweating for a couple of hours.

After lunch, I started feeling rather yucky. I had made sure to stretch well after my run and rehydrated like a champ. I feel like most days, after I’ve run more than 4 miles, I just feel yucky. I was even wondering if it was my blood sugar so I had healthy snacks throughout the afternoon. Perhaps it’s a combination of the heat, running, and someone putting a spell on me.

No, not really. But I am enjoying Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. It’s just so creative, the way Rowlings interweaves magical twists into the ordinary.

high fiving a million angels!

I am so stoked right now!

I just signed up to do the Color Run! I am SO EXCITED! I was going to do it regardless of who else was going, but it’s going to be even more spectacular because so many of my friends are doing it! I debated not announcing it on here for fear of it filling up before we could all get signed up. But then I realized that even if all 12 of you signed up right away, there would still be slots left. So have at it. And in case you’re wondering what the Color Run is, check out this video.

I’ve been doing about a 5k every time I’ve gone running lately, but some runs are better than others. This last week or so they’ve been on the slow end. The heat and humidity are really zapping me. I’ve been tempted before, but today was the first day I actually ran through some sprinklers. 😉 When I’m feeling good and still have energy, I like to high five the low-hanging branches of trees as I’m running by.

And pretend that I’m Liz Lemon.

Since I was at my parents’ house on Saturday, I decided to run around the lake that I visited so frequently growing up.

It was perfect weather, nice and cool. And it brought back so many mems. I love this place.

This week I’m looking forward to a “cold front” moving through and snapping the humidity. Now it’s time to start putting my outfit together for the Color Run. I already know what top I’m wearing…

can it be?

Is it really Friday? The past seven days have been a blur.

Last Friday B-muscle and I got up early to go on a long run together. We did 5.26 miles in 1:02:43. It was a green zone run so it was nice and easy. When we got back, we showered up, packed up, and hit the road for Myrtle Beach. On the way down we stopped to meet our new nephew, Moredecai. 🙂

And to hang out with our other nephew, Malachi.

Once we finally got to the beach, it was nearly dark. And actually chilly.

I got up early on Saturday morning to go for a run. (What’s wrong with me?)

It was perfect weather: warm but with a cool breeze. I only saw 2 other runners out, normally around here I see at least 5-6. After lunch the young’uns hit the beach git our game on. Ladder ball is quite possibly the funnest game ever.

We were sad to leave the fam, but it was a good, quick trip.

This week was a hard one physically and emotionally. On Tuesday I had a routine colonoscopy done, which meant prepping for it all day Monday. I debated including this in my blog, but I’m not embarrassed by it and I don’t want you to be either. Don’t let a little embarrassment keep you from having better health.

On Wednesday we found out that a friend from high school had taken his life. It broke my heart. I’ve been in some pretty dark places, deep in depression. I’ve felt alone, just wanted the pain to end. But please, if you’re reading this, know that you’re not alone and there is hope. It may not feel like it, but there is hope.

Over the last year I have turned to running as a source of stress-relief and have found that being outside in the sunshine has done wonders for my spirit. I don’t usually listen to music as I’m running, but the last few days I turned on the Avett Brothers and some old school hymns, just to help in my mental processing. These lyrics were especially heart-piercing.

Make sure my sister knows I loved her
Make sure my mother knows the same
Always remember, there was nothing worth sharing
Like the love that let us share our name

From Murder In The City. ❤

the weekend, part 2

I got up early again on Sunday (I know! What was I thinking?) to run before the heat set in. I wanted to try running on an empty stomach. Since I knew it was a fairly short run, without too much intensity, I thought I’d give it a try.

My legs felt heavy and I had an unusually hard time getting my heart rate up at the beginning. I know your heart rate is lowest first thing in the morning and thought that may have had something to do with it. But I felt like I was working hard and hadn’t even made it into the blue zone! (Blue = 3 out of 10 effort.) I also wet the sensor, thinking maybe somehow it wasn’t registering properly. Even though I had a hard go at the beginning, eventually my legs woke up and I felt better.

In the graph above, you can see I even managed to keep my bpm steady(ish) while climbing the last hill up to my house. I had to really pay attention to do that…

I was so glad I got my run out of the way early because that left me the rest of the day to get on with my next project!

Taping a giant canvas! Seriously, though, I was so sick of it I nearly didn’t finish. I spent at least 6 hours just taping. (I followed the instructions here. And apparently we had similar thoughts on colors!)

At this point, after I had painted several coats, I found myself a little nervous to peel the tape…

And when I started to peel, my fears were confirmed.

Fortunately (for me) you can’t see the details in this and how the paint leaked under the tape. Lesson learned: when using a canvas with deep texture, invest in better tape (like frog tape). Also fortunately, acetone nail polish remover helped me clean up the bad spots and I tried not to be such a perfectionist about the rest. I left it to dry overnight so I could hang it today.

When I got up this morning and checked on my plants, I found this little guy blooming! I really need to move this zucchini to its own box…

After getting some work done and going to the travel clinic this morning, I got my lift on with this little bad girl.

This is still one of my favorite stretches:

A few minutes into the stretches, my workout buddy had given up…

After dinner, we got the canvas hung on the wall! Since we’ve been married, we haven’t ever gotten real bedroom furniture, that money was always allocated to furnishing other parts of the house. So, in lieu of buying a bed frame with a headboard, I painted one. 🙂

Pardon the white balance, the iPhone can only do so much. Even though it took forever, I’m glad I did it. One step closer to a grown-up bedroom! 🙂

And here’s a view with the rest of the room:

The bed skirt, curtains, and painting are much closer in color than they appear here. Blame the tungsten light. Now I want some big fluffy yellow throw pillows and a chaise lounge. And some legit night stands. And a gentleman’s chest. 🙂

the weekend, part 1

A lot went down this weekend. Here’s the first half.

Friday night we hung out with our neighb’s for El Jefe’s birthday. The boys played FIFA while Ginna did some magazine sorting (more enjoyable than it sounds) and I did some crafting.

I’ve been using a process I learned in 2nd grade art class and have gotten a few questions about it. So here’s another break down. I printed out some lyrics 10″x10″ (over two pages taped together) to be used on a 12″x12″ canvas. You can see how I scribbled with pencil on the back of the words, first. I then lined up the lyrics, centered them on the canvas and taped it into place. Then I traced the outline of the letters, pressing firmly with a ballpoint pen, transferring the words to the canvas. I don’t think I’ll ever trace this many words again… it just took forever.

Here’s how it looks without the paper, partially painted.

And after one coat of paint.

In between coats of paint, I added the final touch to my country paintings, some love. ❤

I was going to use gold paint, but there was come crazy warning on the packaging that said it included an ingredient known in California to cause cancer. So, instead, I used Martha Stewart’s foil transfer sheets and loved how it turned out.

Saturday morning I got up (fairly) early for my run.

Clearly the heart rate monitor wasn’t working properly… unless I have some magical ability to maintain a 152bpm while jogging.

It was a beautiful morning, warm but not muggy.

Ginna, Julie, and I went to the pool in the afternoon… along with all the drunkards in our apartment complex. 😉

After church on Saturday we celebrated El Jefe’s birthday again with lots more friends. Then we had some amazing cake at the after party!

babies are a good reason to party

This past weekend was busy but great. I worked Friday night in Greensboro doing a Norwex show and had a baby shower for one of my dearest friends.

It was the cutest shower I’ve been to, no detail was over-looked. And there were no gross or embarrassing games.

Pom poms everywhere! Allison worked hard making all of these decorations!

I made a pink drink which looked presh in some mason jars with paper straws.

Just a few of the peonies that were fresh from Dorothy’s garden.

The mom-to-be! There was so much pink and so many ruffles!

Um, I barely held it together reading this… gah the emotions were overflowing that day.

I love these girls. 🙂

And these man-ladies.

I couldn’t leave this picture out. Petals is such a sweetie. And I love Ginna’s new haircut!

For more and prettier pictures of the set-up, food, and guests, check out Carrie’s and Allison’s blogs.

I crashed as soon as I got home on Saturday night and spent the day Sunday cleaning and packing for our trip. Since I’ve watched season 1 of Downton Abbey about 6 times now, I’ve moved on to season 2. Love it!

These will be my traveling friends for the next two weeks or so. We’re on our way to Ottawa (driving: via VA and PA). We’ll be spending the week with our Canadian AIA buddies. I’m really excited. We always stay with our family friends (rather than in the dorms) and I love them. Even though it’s a chaotic week ending in a 24-hour sports marathon, we always leave feeling refreshed.

some cliche about laughter.

I’m going to list a few things here that have made me laugh recently. Don’t judge.

  • The squirrels in my back yard. They are amazing little acrobats who run and jump from limb to limb like they’re tripping on some wild mushrooms.
  • Lola stuck her head in a tube and left it there and then stared at me. Unfortunately I didn’t get a photo, but trust me.
  • Sitting next to my sister at family dinner. Another you-had-to-be-there.
  • Hanging out with my boys (i.e. my husband and my brother) and being dumb.

Yosemite Nerf

  • Watching funny videos with said boys. Here’s one of my favorites. 🙂


HL Girls’ Weekend

I think we’re all going to write a post about this past weekend. Here’s mine. 🙂


This past weekend a group of us who have been good friends since childhood met up in a tiny mountain town of NC. Carrie, Ginna, Lucy, Allison, Michelle and myself (and Michelle’s awesome pets) hung out on the porch and enjoyed autumn’s arrival. We ate good food, sipped good wine, and chewed the fat. I really like that even though we didn’t have a movie night or a game night it was still super fun. At the height of the crazy excitement, I Skyped Birdman from my iPhone. He and Ginna’s hubs, El Jefe, were watching a movie and loved the interruption. I’m sure it took them a little bit to actually understand what we were all saying. His response was something along the lines of “It was just a giggle fest over there.” In fact, at dinner on Sunday night Broman and El Jefe asked Ginna and me if all we did was giggle. Ginna promptly responded, “Actually we just sat quietly in a room for a couple of hours without talking.” Bazinga.


Anyway, pictures are always better than rambles so here are some of my (many) favorites from the weekend. 🙂 And there’s a video at the end you’re not gonna want to miss.


And then Lucy went crazy with the remote…

In the corn maze, looking at the map.

Looking at the map again.

Here's how we see the map...

We were not impressed.

Finally made it out of the corn maze and enjoyed a hay ride.

On the hay ride. 🙂

In downtown Sparta.

The trees were changing already!

Trip, Michelle's three-legged cat, is probably my favorite feline. I kind of want to see him and Lola play together.


Bella (the dog) loves to be loved.

Ginna, Lucy and I stopped in Mt. Airy on the way home.

We enjoyed some greasy diner food.

And Oreo Cakesters! The love of my life.