unexpected expenses…but great gift ideas!

Doesn’t it always work, that you have to open your wallet for unexpected expenses at the WORST time ever??!!  This month we’ve each had traffic tickets (the dumb ones that you think, SERIOUSLY!?!?), medical bills for an emergency room visit for Addie (that turned out well, thank goodness!), and this weekend….replacing my makeup bag…

Now any girl reading this KNOWS that replacing your makeup bag is painful!  I don’t even want to add the cost up…the designer bag itself (which was a gift), the amazing brushes (that were a gift), and the priceless collection of makeup inside that had been carefully collected and now represented MY FACE….oh it is just so sad…I waited an entire week (looking like a walking zombie and attending meetings wearing sunglasses, but finally bit the bullet this past Sunday and replaced only the essentials.

For the back story…The bag is normally in my car (as it’s the ONLY place I actually have 5 minutes to put my face on, and the only time I’m going somewhere that someone might care what I look like – or that I would be mortified if I saw someone without my face!)  But somehow between Saturday night and Monday morning (although the car was never driven off our driveway) the bag disappeared.  Both my husband and I are completely stumped and have searched everywhere…still totally disbelieving that it could have been taken from the car, but also knowing that there aren’t many places it could hide in our house and we both remember it being in the car…..so sad…..guess it’s Merry Christmas to me!

The only good that has come out of this, is that you now get a post on the replacement make-up!

So here goes (click on each of the images for a pop up review of the product.  There is a link included in each pop up. To exit the pop up, just click the image again. Each can also be found in the Beauty Favorites Gallery):

Guerlain Terracotta Moisturizing Bronzer #3 $46:

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Max Factor 2000 Calorie Mascara, about $5 at the drugstore:

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NARS Blush, “Orgasm” $22:

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MAC Eyeshadow, “Orb”, “Idol Eyes”, and “Knight Divine” $14.50 each:

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MAC Eyeshadow Palette “Smoke & Mirrors” $36:

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MAC Brush Gift Set, “Magic, Mirth & Mischief” $49.50:

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Trish McEvoy Shell Eye Brightner $22:

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MAC Pro Longwear Lipcolour, “For Keeps” $21:

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MAC Longwear Lustre Lipcolour, “Lishious” $21:

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All of these can make great Holiday gifts, for you, or for a friend, or sister, or mom.  Next addition I need to do is replace tweezers, my nail polish, travel moisturizer, hair bands….oh that little bag carried my life…stay tuned for more recommendations of Favorites!

Happy Tuesday!  Get that Thanksgiving shopping done!!

old school is cool again

I’ll admit it now before you read any further, I have a few quirks.  You already know that I’m an organization nerd...but now you’ll also know that I can’t stand to get my hands wet from condensation on cold drinks.  No idea where it came from, but I can’t stand it.  So much so that the sweet girls that used to assist us at my previous life office job, used to tape a folded napkin around my cold water bottles when they were setting up for our meetings (can we say high maintenance!).  Yeah, I know…but for the record, I never once asked them to do it, they were just that wonderful!

But I can assure you, there is no one in my house setting up for meetings, or lunches, or dinners, or anything in between anymore.  And even if there were, little 9 month old Hayden would have that napkin off the glass or water bottle so fast my head would spin.

So enter an old school love, Tervis Tumblers.

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Do any of you remember these?

Honestly, we didn’t grew up with them, but I can’t tell you how many people come to our house saying, “OMG, I remember these from my grandparent’s house.” or “We grew up with these, I have not seen them in ages.  Do they still make them?”

They do still make them.  I personally love the Tervis 16oz. Clear Tumblers!  You can add a monogram, or a little patch with your favorite sports team, your college name, an animal, they even have some fun holiday widgets, whatever you want.  I cheesed out a little for Christmas a couple years ago and gave my parents a stocking stuffer of Tervis Tumblers with a moose for their lake house. Seemed fitting for sitting around the lake…

To back up a bit, if you are not familiar with Tervis Tumblers,
here’s a little info on their features and benefits.

In a nut shell:

They keep drinks hot.

They keep drinks cold and reduce condensation.

They are microwave, freezer and dishwasher safe.

And they are guaranteed for life.
(you can’t beat that!)

I bought my clear tumblers for our family for 3 reasons:

First – I’ve already told how how much I hate *wet glass hands*.

Second – With Littles that not only accidently knock our drinking glasses over, they (or at least Addie for now) likes to drink from the same glass we are drinking from at breakfast, lunch and dinner.  And I’m not into sharing my Riedel wine glasses quite yet.  The Tervis Tumblers are perfect for her to use.

Third – We are outside playing a ton, and have a pool in our backyard.  I feel a whole lot better knowing that there is no possibility of broken glass outside for their little feet.

And the added bonus – The fact that our lemonade stays cold forever, even if we are out playing with the kids for 30 minutes before we get back for a second sip.

So not only is it a fantastic everyday drinking glass to have at your home, it’s also a great Holiday gift for just about anyone.  Definitely a favorite thing for our family!!

Now onto our winners from last week’s giveaway:

Look who is coming

I absolutely love this book and Addie has been getting such a kick out of seeing her family in the pictures.  Be sure too check out the post and visit the Vazu Kids site to read the story behind the book. A great gift for any child for the holidays! (And at $13.99 easy on the pocket book, plus a portion of the proceed goes to help children with Autism – win, win all the way around!). 

Congratulations to our winners Kelly and Carla!

Please send me an email shanna@myfavoriteeverything.com with where we should send your books!

Have a great Monday everyone!  Be sure to check back this week. I am SOOOOO excited about an AWESOME giveaway! But I have not decided which day to post it yet…OHHH it is soooo good, I wish I could enter to win!!

i’m human, i swear…

….because I’m currently completely brain dead, and can’t seem to muster it together to have enough whit or interest for you all for Tuesday!  Normally on Monday, I have help so that I can lock myself in my office and come up with LOTS and lots of fun posts for the entire week…but today, our sweet nanny called in sick (complications from a tooth surgery), and our housekeeper (who comes once every 2 weeks and is on “maternity leave”)’s sub decided she doesn’t want to do our house (are the diaper pails really THAT bad?) and I now have no cleaning help for another month or so…. Now I know that I’m LUCKY to have both of these people to help in my life…but I’m not sure I could keep up with everything without them…I certainly could not write this blog!  And to find out late Sunday afternoon, doesn’t give me much time to figure out a new plan!  Then with work being done on our garage, and not being able to get in or out of the driveway without navigating a mine field, while holding 2 kids, and avoiding smacking baby #3/my prego belly into anything, and the water being turned off in the house for a good chunk of the day while we fix the shower…..I’m kinda of feeling like Goldie Hawn in Overboard (GREAT movie!  I know every mom can relate to that numb-on-the-sofa-babbeling-incoherently-scene).

Thankfully Monday’s post was written last week….but there was no chance to try to do Tuesday’s…..sooooooo…..I think I’m going to feature one of my new FAVORITE cookbooks and blogs from an AMAZING woman, mother, wife, HUMAN BEING.  On days like today when I can barely remember my own name, I think of Ree Drummond and have a little WWRD (What Would Ree Do?) moment.

Pioneer Woman Cookbook The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl

Ree Drummond is The Pioneer Woman. If you have not stopped by her blog, I strongly urge you to do so.  She home schools 4 “punks”,  lives on a cattle ranch in Oklahoma, is a transplanted USC graduate, city slicker, sushi lover who married her Marlboro Man when they met by chance in a bar on a brief stop over for her on the way to Chicago.   I LOVE to read Ree’s blog.  She has that amazing southern humor.  She describes her cookbook as being “Full of recipes, cows, children, and butter…”  She shares recipes for Cowboy Food (TOTAL comfort food with insanely wonderful gobs of butter) and Cowgirl Food (like her Most Favorite Salad EVER!).

Ree showers her site and her recipes with her beautiful photography which makes you feel like you are in the moment with her, a brief escape from your own hectic life.  (I was talking on the phone with a friend in Sun Valley one time and she said, that life at home just didn’t seem as important when a moose is walking in front of you to the water…).  Ree Drummond is my little escape when I need it. (And in just case you are reading this Ree – I am NOT implying that you are a moose!!  FAR, Far from it!! You’re the ESCAPE part!!)

With much encouragement she recently published a cookbook including many of her most requested recipes (which BTW are super tasty and super easy!).  I just received my copy from Amazon this week and can’t wait to incorporate some of her dishes into our weekly menu plans…who wouldn’t love a little down home mac and cheese, spicy pulled pork, or perfect pot roast???  I think one of the greatest things about this cookbook – besides the yummy recipes and great step by step photography for each dish, is that you can READ the cookbook.  I actually sat down and read it cover to cover and felt like I was sharing a glass of wine with Ree on her front porch watching her punks play, the cows graze, and the sun set as her Marlboro Man came strolling up the walk with that look in his eyes…..(the one that says I love ya, and I LOVE my Favorite Sandwich!)

Happy Tuesday y’all! (AHHH, there is the SMU Texas girl, I knew I had her in me still!). I would love to share a copy of this awesome cookbook with a lucky winner!  Check out The Pioneer Woman and let me know what recipe you would like to see included in a weekly menu – Cowgirl or Cowboy, doesn’t matter from where.  I’ll post the winner this Friday!

(This Giveaway is currently closed. Thank you.)

Good luck!

holiday gift wrap

11.10.09 UPDATE – scroll to end of this post for a Promotion I just received.  Thx!

It can’t seriously be that time of year!  But when I look at my calendar is says NOVEMBER and last time I checked, the next month is DECEMBER.  And I’m not sure which is more terrifying, that Christmas is a few short weeks away, or that once Christmas is here, it means we will soon have 3 kids, under 2, just 2 1/2 more months…..AGGGGGHH!!!  Where did the time go???

OK, back to the point.

Christmas.  Presents, gifts, shopping galore.  And all those gifts need to be wrapped.  Here are a few favorites for me.  My family is somewhat crazy, we each seem to have a wrapping theme each year.  Some may say we are, “over the top”, I say we “simplify”.  You may think I’m trying to color coordinate the gifts under the tree….but I’m really just lazy. By picking what I feel like wrapping with for that year, it means I know everything will look good and I can whip it out really fast.  It’s like knowing that jeans and a white t-shirt always work, just throw in a great accessory.  Kraft paper, kraft bags, cellophane with a cute label, tissue or ribbon work just the same.  So I stick to the basics.  I also buy in bulk as it’s tons cheaper and then I always have what I need.

Gifts - Kraft PaperYou should always keep a roll of Kraft Wrapping Paper in your wrapping closet.  You can use it any time of year for any gift wrap.  It’s a basic you NEED to have!

Gifts Kraft Bag

I have a stock of different size kraft gift bags.  Helpful for a ton of occasions.  I like to stuff the bags with colored tissue, a piece of cellophane and a cute gift label.

Gifts Cello Roll

Cellophane – Countless uses.  And not just gift wrap.  It makes LOTS of fun noise.  Don’t forget the tip to “wrap” new $1 toys when you are traveling….

Gift Ribbon

Keep a box of different rolls of ribbons.  I love basic satin ribbons as the bows tie beautifully, whether you are making it simple or complicated.  I also have raffia, a few wire ribbons, a few patterns, some thick and some thin ribbons.  It’s fun to get colors that can work together as you can use a few different ones at a time.

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Can’t live without my 3M Scotch ATG700 Tape Gun.  My in-laws laugh each Chrismas as the young kids try to open our gifts – it really holds things together! (I’ve since switched to gift bags for them).  This gun is AWESOME to be able to tape edges and maintain a perfectly straight, “invisible seal” (meaning, no tape line).  And it’s not just fabulous for wrapping gifts, it also helps when you’re making invitations, holiday cards, mounting a card to backing.  I actually packed it in my suitcase to help with a project for my sister’s Girls Weekend.  There were a ton of wedding advice cards that our other sister had brought and it was the fastest way for me to assemble eveyrything.  I think I’ve had mine for at least 10 years!

Gift For your party ribbon

I love For My Party.  Great site. I’ve been using them forever. You can order party coasters, napkins, personlized cellophane bags….and personalized ribbon.  I ordered ribbon rolls similar to the image above 3 years ago when my husband I and were married.  I use it to tie on wine bottles, hostess gifts and my holiday wrap.  Still using it now as I had it printed for the holidays.

Gifts For my party luggage tagCute gift tags will make your gift wrap.  I made this luggage tag sample up at For Your Party.  All different choices of color and fonts.

Gifts S and A Gift Label

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE  Sarah + Abraham!  These are gift labels that I just ordered…there are tons of gift label choices! Lots of color options, different sillouettes so you can make up your own family (note the prego belly above).  SOOO Many fun things to choose from and a great price point.  (Excellant gift too, BTW!)

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Erin Condren is another great choice for gift labels. I’ve used these for a while and always received lots of compliments.  Love the different patterns!

Gifts Cotton Idea Tag

Cotton Idea Studio makes a BEAUTIFUL letterpress gift tag!  There are a few different pre-printed holiday options on their site.  Mindy, the owner, can calso help you personalize a nice big stack of luggage style gift tags that you can use year round!!  I love those!  And if you want to make it more economical (as they can be a bit pricey – it is letterpress after all…) design it so you can give to family members.  For instance there are 3 “Love the Coady Family” for my husband’s side, so I could split the stack in 3 between the familes and give as gifts, or we could all go in on the order together.  Just a thought!

So there you have it, a few of my favorite wrapping things!  Remember to keep it simple, don’t complicate matters it’s the thought that counts with a gift (but being kinda cute helps just little!!)

Happy Monday everyone!

11.10.09 UPDATE – I have no affiliation with For Your Party, I just like to shop with them and I just received an email for a Holiday Promotion at For Your Party 20% off Holiday Purchases!!  Use code Turkey09{There Words – Cannot be combined with any other discounts, does not apply to tax, custom art or shipping charges.  Does not apply to previous orders.  No exceptions. Once code per order only.  Valid 11.11.09 – 11.27.09}

bootcamp for your backside

This is not what I was planning on posting today, but when I received the email with the 30% off for 3 days, I decided it was only fair to share with you all (I have no affiliation with this company at all – I just love the products and wanted to pass  along a promotion)…so I moved this entry up on the post list.

Now I definitely need to start off by saying that I’m not making any claims to the fact that air brushed perfection can be reached by using any of the Mama Mio products, but smarter people than me in the Beauty & Fashion world have done their fair share of research for you.  What I will say is that if there is a product out there that says it will lift my boobs, shrink my backside, or trim my tummy (GOOD LUCK!) then I’m game to try it!

A fabulous friend’s mom gave me a Congratulation Kit from Mama Mio when we first found out we were pregnant with Addie.  It included lots of fun goodies – Tummy Rub Oil, Body Cream, and Shower Cream.  My first thought was. “How sweet!”.  Then when I opened the products up and took a sniff,  my second thought was “I’ve died and gone to Heaven!”, then I used the products the next morning and my third thought was, “OMG I’ve been to a spa, and now have the softest skin ever, and I wasn’t even awake to remember going!!”  Seriously, everything smelled SOOOO delicious (in a non overwhelming, I think I’m the most amazing person in the world at this very moment way), my skin was unbelievably soft….my husband kept touching my arms in awe, “Is that really your arm, my wonderful, but scaleydryskinfromhades wife???”

I was hooked and quickly Googled them to find their site and what other products they had.

For the Expectant mom, these are the products I love and have used for 3 years: Tummy Rub Butter, Tummy Rub Oil, Boob Tube, OMega Super-Rich Body Cream, OMega Shower Cream (with a loofah or something to “scrub” your skin).  Not to say that I use everyday, that would be insane to think I could apply 24 x 7!!  But I have them for when I want them and LOVE to use them!

Beauty MM Tummy Rub Beauty MM Tummy Rub Oil Beauty MM Boob Tube

Beauty MM Body cream Beauty MM Shower Cream

As a non pregnant mom (wait, have I been that person in the past 3 years???  OK for a total of 5 months over the entire 3 year period, which is definitely not long enough to enjoy cocktails, let alone long enough to give you an honest write up.  However, the many beauty editors can…) here are some of the products that are receiving rave reviews, Bootcamp for Butts (WHO CAN HELP but try something called BOOTCAMP FOR BUTTS??  It’s a little pricey for me, but I could be tempted with the 30% – 3 day promo and it includes all these products… Shrink to Fit, Tummy Toner, and Omega Body Buff). Then you have to check out Get Waisted that was named in Bazaar’s Best of the Best 2009.  (Great video explaining why it worked for them, BTW on the Get Waisted page.)

Beauty MM Bootcamp for ButtsBeauty MM Get Waisted

So all this to say that I think it’s worth checking out.  Great holiday gifts, great birthday gifts, great baby shower gift, great “just because”gift for yourself.  The 30% off promotion ends midnight, Thursday –  November 5th.  Enter code “MAGIC” during checkout at Mama Mio. I’m off to place my order now!!

last minute halloween thoughts

A few last minute Halloween things to think about….

Holiday Halloween

FIRST – have you ever thought about doing something, but are totally “spooked” at what it might cost that you rule it out before you try?  I’m usually pleasantly surprised when I actually ASK what it might cost.   That being said – how about having someone else do you’re eye makeup and  fake lashes for Halloween? (Feel like a celebrity for minute without the billion dollar price tag). Holiday Salon in Costa Mesa charges $50 for eyes and lashes – not bad!  And it adds the perfect umph your costume needs!  You could even forget the costume and just wear the makeup and look good!  Come to think of it, I might do this myself (I’m not much of a costume girl – I’ve been pregnant now for 3 Halloweens – but the make-up is ALWAYS fun!) Call and make an appointment while space lasts and for further pricing!  (If you don’t live nearby, definitely check with your favorite salon or makeup counter).

SECOND: My Dad actually gave me this cookie recipe (both of my parents put Martha Stewart to shame – it’s crazy).   A couple weekends ago my middle sister and I took our younger sister away for the weekend before her wedding.  So my parents  took the opportunity to fly up north to stay with my nephews for the weekend (my husband is still trying to recover from this as this meant the poor guy ended up with no help with our kids…by gones!)  Anyhow, the part that you need to know is that when we all got home to my sister’s house on Sunday night, we walked into a dark room filled with about 8 small pumpkins glowing, carved to artistic PERFECTION and a tray of the most amazing Halloween cookies.  I sooooo wish we had gotten a picture of it all.  Dad said that he and my 2 1/2 year old nephew had a ton of fun making the cookies. If you held them up to the light, their eyes glowed from the butterscotch candy – I felt like I was 5 again!   Check out Epicurious for other fun Halloween baking ideas your kids will love!

LASTLY, since I tend to go crazy if I don’t hear “adult noise” throughout the day – call it my version of necessary white noise.  I keep the Food Epicurious Halloween CupcakesNetwork on TV.  It’s not playing very loudly but I find as I pass by the TV a million times a day putting laundry away, chasing kids, picking up toys – that I pick up a thing or two that can be helpful.  Last week I heard a fun cupcake recipe for Halloween on The Everyday Italian, Chocolate Orange Cupcakes with Limoncello Frosting...but as I went online to get the recipe, I also found Mini Halloween Pumpkin Cupcakes from Epicurious.  So I’m giving you two cupcake recipes.  One is great because you can use a store bought mix and just add a few things to it; but the other doesn’t really call for anything too challenging and who can resist mini cupcakes???  Plus the pumpkin pie part sounds intriguing!  (I think to simplify my life I would omit the crystalized ginger, pumpkin pie spice and just use canned pumpkin pie mix).

Have a crazy and horrifying week!  (Wait, that sounds like every week…ok, just have a spooky Halloween week!

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