Friday, March 30, 2012

Outfit of the Week

Happy Friday everyone!  Hope everyone has had a great week!  I’m getting this up a little late this evening, I had some errands to run after work since tomorrow is gonna be a busy day.  Here’s this week’s “Outfit of the Week”!

Legging capris in grey:  Danskin (Walmart)
Top:  Self Esteem (JC Penney)
Sandals in blue-green:  Old Navy
Signature strap watch:  Coach
Cuff bracelet in gunmetal:  no brand (Burlington Coat Factory)
Black and white clover necklace:  Lucky in Love

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Healthy Meal of the Week

Hi everyone!  This week’s healthy meal is “Chicken with Pepperoni-Marinara Sauce” from the January/February 2012 issue of Cooking Light.  Once again it was a hit with Scarlett.  I thought it was delicious as well and I added a mixed salad with raspberry vinaigrette.  Check it out below!


Cooking spray
½ teaspoon minced fresh garlic
16 slices pepperoni, coarsely chopped
¼ teaspoon dried oregano
1 ½ cups lower-sodium marinara sauce (such as McCutcheon’s)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 ½ pounds chicken cutlets
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese


1.  Preheat broiler to high.

2.  Heat a saucepan over medium-high heat.  Coat pan with cooking spray.  Add garlic and pepperoni; cook 2 minutes or until garlic begins to brown, stirring frequently.  Add oregano; cook 30 seconds.  Add marinara sauce; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.  Remove from heat; stir in basil.

3.  Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat.  Add oil; swirl to coat.  Sprinkle chicken with pepper.  Add chicken to skillet; cook 5 minutes or until lightly browned, turning after 3 minutes.  Spoon sauce over chicken; sprinkle evenly with cheese.  Broil 2 minutes or until cheese melts.

Serves 4 (serving size:  5 ounces chicken and about 1/3 cup sauce)

Nutritional information:  380 calories; 14/7g total fat (6g saturated fat; 5.2g mono.; 1.2g poly); 48.5g protein; 28.7g carbohydrates; 0.1g fiber; 122mg cholesterol; 1.5mg iron; 533mg sodium; 231mg calcium

Monday, March 26, 2012

Tarte "Gifted" & Benefit "They're Real" Mascara Reviews

Hi everyone!  So, I’ve been using my two new mascaras alternately for the past week and I figured I have enough…data…experience…something…to give my opinion on them.

To start out, here’s a picture of my eyelashes with nothing on them.  As you can see they are sort of light and fairly short.

I tried the “Gifted” Tarte Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara first.  This is the one I saw on QVC and thought at first the model was wearing falsies.  Then, when they put it on the 2nd model, I saw that it wasn’t fake eyelashes, it actually was the mascara.  After using this I honestly believe this actually works.  It lengthened, thickened and lasted the 12 hours Tarte claims it will without flaking.

A few days later I tried the Benefit “They’re Real” mascara.  This one works like expected as well.  It also lengthened, thickened and lasted all day.  It seems to work just as well, if not slightly better, than the Tarte “Gifted”, and I do like it a lot as well.

Over all, they are both great mascaras and would be perfect for anyone who wants something to  make their lashes look long and thick.  By volume, the they are about the same price, the Tarte is $19.00 for .24 oz and the Benefit is $22.00 for .3 oz.  I will more than likely only repurchase the Tarte “Gifted” however.  I have fairly small eyes and the brush on the Benefit mascara is actually too big for me and I can’t get it into my inner lashes without getting it all over my eyelids.  I have included pictures below of the wands so you can see the size of the applicators.

The applicator brush on the Tarte is average size
As you can see, even though the wand is short, the applicator brush on the Benefit is quite a bit larger than on the Tarte.

Additionally, the Tarte mascara is made of natural ingredients with no mineral oil, parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate or synthetic fragrances, which for me is nice since my eyes can be quite sensitive.  However, since both mascaras work very much the same I would recommend either one to anybody looking who asked.

Also, just for reference, I have included a picture of my lashes with my other favorite mascara, MAC’s Mascara X, which has very similar results as the above mascaras.  However, it appears that Mascara X may have been discontinued as it is no longer on MAC’s website, though it would have been nice had I been told this the last time I bought a new tube L.  I guess it’s a good thing the Tarte “Gifted” lived up to my expectations, lol.

I hope this review helped anyone who was on the fence about either of these mascaras.  I really liked the way both worked and am very pleased with all the results.  If you have any questions or anything, let me know in the comments and I’ll get back to everyone!

That’s it for this evening, have a great night!  I’ll talk to everyone soon! J

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Weekly Wrap-Up

Hey all!  Well, another weekend down, a new week about to start.  You know what that means; it’s time for the weekly wrap-up.

Starting as usual with this week’s weight loss, I missed my official weigh in at work again this week.  I was off taking Scarlett to the dentist and my dogs to the vet.  I did step on the scale here earlier and am down 1.6 pounds.  I’m not really counting it though since all scales weigh differently and I prefer to use the one at work to keep track since that’s what I’ve been using since I started.  I’ll have a new “official” weigh in tomorrow.

Moving on to fashion purchases, last week was the big one so there’s not much this week.  I did stop by JC Penney on Monday and picked up 3 new tunic tops:  one in blues and grey, one in fuchsia and black stripes and one purple crocheted one to wear over a plain tank top.  I also got a pair of denim looking leggings and a new pair of capris.

That’s it for this week’s updates.  In the coming week I hope to have up a review of the two mascaras I bought, the Tarte one and the Benefit one.  I also plan to have a new tutorial up as well.  I hope everyone stops by and checks them out.

Have a great week and I’ll talk to ya’ll later! J

Friday, March 23, 2012

Outfit of the Week

Happy Friday all!  Hope everyone is well and had a great day!  I’m actually getting this up earlier than usual since I’m heading out in a bit to have dinner and drinks with some friends.  So excited!  Here’s this week’s “Outfit of the Week”.

Jean capris:  Levi’s denizen (Target)
Top:  Rue21
Sandals in pink:  Coach
Signature strap watch:  Coach
Cuff bracelet in gunmetal:  no brand (Burlington Coat Factory)
Silver bangles on left arm:  No Boundries (Walmart)
Black and white clover necklace:  Lucky in Love
Silver heart lock necklace:  Tiffany & Co.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Healthy Meal of the Week

Hey all!  This week’s healthy meal is “Tomato-Basil Soup” from the March 2012 issue of Cooking Light.  It was very easy and fairly quick to make.  It was also a hit with Scarlett, she loved it.  I loved it too, very tasty and seems like it should be more calories than it actually is.   Check out the recipe below, try it out, and enjoy!


1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ cups pre chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, chopped
¾ cup chopped fresh basil
1 (28-ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
½ cup (4 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, cut into cubes
2 cups 1% low-fat milk
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper

12 ( ½ -inch-thick) slices French bread
Cooking spray
1 garlic clove, halved
1 ounce shredded Asiago cheese


1.  Preheat broiler to high.

2.  Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add onion; sauté 3 minutes.  Stir in garlic; cook for 1 minute.  Add basil and tomatoes; bring to a boil.  Stir in cream cheese until melted.  Place mixture in blender and blend till smooth.  Return to pan; stir in milk, salt and pepper.  Return to medium-high; cook 2 minutes.

3.  Place bread on baking sheet; light coat with cooking spray.  Broil 1 minute.  Rub garlic over toasted side; turn bread over.  Top with Asiago; broil 1 minute.

Serves 4 (serving size 1 ¼ cups soup and 3 toasts)

Nutritional information:  312 calories; 13.9g total fat (6.3g saturated fat; 4.5g mono.; 0.9g poly); 13.2g protein; 33.8g carbohydrates; 3.4g fiber; 33mg cholesterol; 14mg iron; 506mg sodium; 281mg calcium

Monday, March 19, 2012

Stila "In the Garden" Swatches

Hi everyone!  All I have today are the swatches from my new Stila “In the Garden” palette.  I haven’t had a chance to come up with any looks from this yet but I hope to have one soon with the pink and blue colors.  Check out the pictures below.

Top row, L to R:  chinois, breeze, bark, freesia, rosette
Bottom row, L to R:  nectar, honey, sage, moss, juniper
Below the shadows:  smudge stick waterproof eyeliner in “starfish”

without primer
Top row, L to R:  chinois, breeze, bark, freesia, rosette
Bottom row, L to R:  nectar, honey, sage, moss, juniper

with primer
Top row, L to R:  chinois, breeze, bark, freesia, rosette
Bottom row, L to R:  nectar, honey, sage, moss, juniper
Below the shadows:  smudge stick waterproof eyeliner in “starfish”
That’s all I have for today, check back soon for some new tutorials, including one or two from this palette.  I’ll talk to everyone later! J

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Weekly Wrap-Up

And finally, the last post of this evening, lol.  Like I said, it’s been a hectic kind of weekend.  Friday night Scarlett and I went ice skating since she needed to practice some of her moves.  Then yesterday I was out all day and by the time I got home it was time to get ready for family night.  So now that I’m all caught up, it’s time for the weekly wrap-up!

Starting with weight loss this week I’ve maintained since last week so that’s good.  I’ve been pretty good about eating healthy and working out at least 3 times a week.  I hope everyone is enjoying the “Healthy Meal of the Week” posts and are getting some use out of them.  I’d also like to say again that I am so proud of my team at work.  Everyone has been so dedicated, supportive and just plain out awesome!!

Moving on to beauty purchases, I have quite a few.  I did say that this week would make up for last week’s zero purchases, lol.  I’m just going to recap what I had in my haul video so if you’ve seen it this is nothing new.  For those who didn’t watch the video, enjoy!

At MAC I picked up a new lipglass in “Pink Lemonade” which is a really pretty salmon/coral type color.  Like many lipglasses it is quite pigmented and so far what I’ve tried of it looks really nice.

At Sephora I got a second Stila “Love at First Blush” blush palette.  I got one at Ulta around Valentine’s Day and wanted another since it is limited edition.  However, Ulta never got any more it so I was excited to find one yesterday. 

I also got a small trial/travel size of Benefit’s “They’re Real” mascara.  I’ve been wanting to try this for a while but didn’t want to spend the $22 on the full size.  The travel size was $10 so I figured what the hay and grabbed it.  I’ll let everyone know how it works. 

The next thing I got was my birthday “gift” sample since I’m a member of the Sephora Beauty Insider club and it’s my birthday month.  This year’s sample is a Fresh “Sugar Kisses” mini lip duo.  I’ve never tried anything by Fresh so we’ll see how these work. 

And finally at Sephora since I hit my 100 points on my Beauty Insider card I went ahead and redeemed my points for a Sephora brand lipgloss sample in “Pin-Up Pink Shiny”.  It’s a bright pink but it is a bit on the transparent side so it ends up not as bright on.

My next stop yesterday was Ulta where I picked up a few minor necessities like some more cotton rounds, cotton swabs  and new Beauty Smoothie 3-in-1 in Pomegranate Passion (I only use this as body wash, not as shampoo like can be done).

I also picked up 2 Tarte items.  One is an Amazonian Clay 12 hour blush in “Dollface” which is a nice medium pink.   The other was a tube of Gifted Amazonian Clay smart mascara in “Black”.  I’m most excited about this mascara.  I saw it on QVC about a year or so ago and it looked like it was amazing.  I honestly thought the model had on false eyelashes they were so long and thick compared to the “before” pictures.  That was until I actually watched it being applied to the 2nd model.  It made her lashes look sooo awesome!  I’ll be sure to let everyone know if it works as promised.

I also grabbed a new Loreal 8 hour Infallible le gloss in “Pink Topaz”, a bright hot pink.  These glosses are quite pigmented, more like a lipstick.  I really like the formula and they do last quite a while after being applied.

Next I got some new eye shadow.  Two were just some of the Ulta brand singles, one in “Bayou”, a silvery purple-blue, and the other in “Iceland”, a frosty white, since they were Buy One, Get One.  I also got the “In the Garden” Stila palette which has some really pretty spring colors in it.  I’ll be sure to get some swatch pictures up tomorrow of this.  Now to just work on some pretty looks from this.

Finishing up at Ulta I picked up a fingernail polish from Butter London in “Trout Pout” which is a nice salmon colored cream shade.  I don’t usually buy Butter London polishes, even though they have really pretty colors, because they are a bit pricey for nail polish.  I had some extra money though so I went ahead and decided to try it. I haven’t used it yet but will soon.

The last place I stopped was Target.  I only picked up some more Biore Blemish Fighting Ice Cleanser, which I LOVE, and some contact solution.  Kinda boring compared to everything else.

I did get a few fashion items I’ve kept separate from the above items.  At Target I grabbed a new plain white tank top and a new pair of Levi’s “Denzien” capris in dark denim.  And lastly I got a new top at Rue21.  It’s a bright pink with some blues in a leopard/giraffe type print.  It’s just really cute.

That’s it for purchases this week.  I’m really excited about everything I got and can’t wait to try it all out.

I’ll end tonight with this week’s manicure.  This one is “Barbados Blue” from essie.  It’s a really pretty light blue pearl.  It’s the one I purchased 2 weeks ago and I’m very happy with the color

Well, that’s all for this week!  Hope everyone has a great week ahead and I’ll talk to y’all later! J

MAC, Sephora, Ulta and Target Haul

Here’s the 2nd post of the day, one more after this.  As you can tell by the title I stopped by MAC, Sephora and Ulta this weekend and picked up a few things.  Enjoy the video below!

Outfit of the Week

Hi everyone!  Here’s the first of three posts to go up today as this has been a hectic weekend, lol.   Here’s my Outfit of the Week!

Jeans:  Seven7 (eBay)
Top in purple:  Xhilaration (Target)
Sandals in purple:  MAX rave (Walmart)
Signature Sophia handbag in grey with silver:  Coach
Signature strap watch:  Coach
Bangles on left arm:  Coach
Studded wrap bracelet in white:  Xhilaration (Target)
Black and white clover necklace:  Lucky in Love
Silver heart lock necklace:  Tiffany & Co.
Sunglasses:  Coach

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Healthy Meal of the Week

Hey everyone!  Tonight’s healthy meal is “Shrimp Tacos with Green Apple Salsa” from the March 2012 issue of Cooking Light.  It was featured in their “Feed 4 for Less than $10” section.  I suppose this is true if you were to find the shrimp on sale (like I did).  I liked the meal a lot, Scarlett not so much so it may not be very kid friendly in case that’s important.  I added a salad that consisted of 1 cup baby spinach and 2 tablespoon light raspberry vinaigrette but you can add whatever side you choose.  Check out the recipe below and  enjoy!


1 ½ tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 teaspoons fresh lime juice, divided
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon hot smoked paprika
¼ teaspoon ground red pepper
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/3 cup sliced green onions
½ teaspoon grated lime rind
1 Granny Smith apple, thinly sliced
 1 minced seeded jalapeno pepper (I did not add this)
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
1 ounce crumbled queso fresco


1.  Combine 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons lime juice, cumin, paprika, and red pepper in a small bowl.  Combine shrimp and spice mixture in a zip-top plastic bag and seal.  Let stand 15 minutes.

2.  Combine 1 ½ teaspoons oil, 2 teaspoons juice, onions, 1/8 teaspoon salt, rind, apples and jalapenos; toss.

3.  Remove shrimp from bag; discard marinade.  Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat.  Sprinkle shrimp with 1/8 teaspoon salt.  Arrange half of shrimp in pan; grill 2 minutes on each side or until done.  Remove from pan; keep warm.  Repeat procedure with remaining shrimp.  Toast the tortillas in grill pan, if desired.  Place 2 tortillas on each of 4 plates and divide shrimp evenly among tortillas.  Divide salsa evenly among tacos and top with queso fresco.

Hands on time:  37 minutes
Total time:  49 minutes

Serves 4 (serving size 2 tacos)

Nutritional information:  259 calories; 9.4g total fat (1.6g saturated fat; 5.3g mono.; 1.7g poly); 21.2g protein; 24.3g carbohydrates; 3g fiber; 170mg cholesterol; 3mg iron; 364mg sodium; 87mg calcium

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Weekly Wrap-Up

Well, it’s Sunday again (Booo!), time for the weekly wrap-up.  This one will be quite short.

As always I’ll start with weight loss.  I’m down two more pounds since my last official weigh-in 2 weeks ago.  That puts me back down under my original goal so now I’m well on my way to my final goal!  I now have a subscription to Cooking Light magazine so finding healthy meals to cook should be much easier.  At least I hope so, lol.  I also hope everyone is enjoying my weekly healthy meal posts.

Moving on to beauty/fashion purchases this week there are none!  In fact, aside from groceries, smoothies for Scarlett and I from Smoothie King and my every other week McGriddle addiction, the only other things I purchased at all were new figure skates for Scarlett.  Her old ones were about a size and a half too small so it was time for new ones.  Her ice skating instructor said this may help with some of the moves she’s having trouble getting down.  We’ll see in the next few weeks if she was right.

One last exciting thing, my favorite team has made it into the NCAA tournament!  Go Kansas State Wildcats!  Along with them the other two major Kansas schools, University of Kansas and Wichita State University, will also be competing!  This is awesome for us!

Well, that’s it for this week, hope everyone has a good one coming up!  I’ll talk to ya’ll later J.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Outfit of the Week

A day late thanks to a long overdue Girls’ Night Out last night with awesome friends.  I love my girls!!  Here’s this week’s Outfit of the Week.

Jeans:  Kardashian Kollection (Sears)
Blazer in black:  twenty-one (Forever 21)
Buckle top in black:  Kardashian Kollection (Sears)
Ankle boots in black:  Kardashian Kollection (Sears)
Signature Sophia handbag in grey with silver:  Coach
Black watch:  XOXO
Cuff bracelet in gunmetal:  no brand (Burlington Coat Factory)
Studded wrap bracelet in white:  Xhilaration (Target)
Black and white clover necklace:  Lucky in Love
Silver clover necklace:  Leila

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Healthy Meal of the Week

Good evening all!  This week’s healthy meal is “Enchilada Casserole” from the January/February issue of Cooking Light.   I thought it was excellent and really easy to make.  You can also make some optional “Spicy Black Beans” that I didn’t try (don’t really like spicy) but I’d bet they’re yummy too.  Check out my pictures and recipes below!


1 pound ground sirloin
1 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 ½ tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup fat-free, lower-sodium beef broth
1 tablespoon 40%-less-sodium taco seasoning mix (such as Old El Paso)
1 (8-ounce) can no-salt-added tomato sauce
8 (8-inch) whole-wheat flour tortillas
1/3 cup (1 ½ ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese (with Jalapeno peppers optional)


1.  Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add beef and onion to pan; cook 6 minutes, stirring to crumble.

2.  Preheat oven to 400°.

3.  Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add garlic; sauté 1 minute.  Sprinkle with flour; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly.  Add broth, taco seasoning and tomato sauce to pan.  Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add 1 ½ cups tomato mixture to beef mixture; reserve ½ cup tomato mixture.

4. Place 1 tortilla in a 9-inch pie plate.  Top with 1 cup beef mixture.  Repeat layers, ending with tortilla.  Spread reserved tomato mixture over tortilla.  Top with cheese.  Bake at 400° for 10 minutes or until cheese melts.  Cool slightly.  Cut into 4 wedges.

Serves 4 (serving size 1 wedge)

Nutritional information337 calories; 14.6g total fat (7g saturated fat); 30.2g protein; 32.4 g carbohydrates; 4.7g fiber; 650mg sodium

Check out my awesome paper plates and plastic cutlery, lol

Optional Spicy Black Beans:

Heat a large non stick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add 2 teaspoons canola oil to pan; swirl to coat.  Add 1 cup chopped red bell pepper and 1 minced jalapeno pepper; sauté 4 minutes.  Add 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, ¼ teaspoon salt, and 1 (15-ounce) can rinsed and drained organic no-salt-added black beans.  Cook 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated.  Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro.

Serves 4 (serving size about ½ cup)

Nutritional information:  83 calories; 2.5g total fat (0.2g saturated fat); 156mg sodium

So that’s it for tonight. Definitely try it out, with or without the black beans!  Talk to everyone later! J

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Weekly Wrap-Up

Anyone else like me wish the weekend was much longer?  Well, it’s that time again, here’s the weekly wrap-up.

Starting with weight loss, I was sick Monday so I missed my official weigh in.  I did just hop on my scale to check, it weighs about 2 pounds heavier than the one at work so I’ve pretty much maintained this past week I would say.  I’m not gonna add anything official since I like to weigh on the same scale to stay accurate but I’ll say I’m doing pretty good.  Still trying to eat healthy and I either use my elliptical or do Zumba for Wii every day except Saturdays.  I’m still just so proud of all my friends and coworkers for all the hard work they’re putting in!

Moving on to beauty purchases, I only have a few once again.  From Ulta I picked up some more “Say Yes to Cucumbers” cleansing towelettes, I really like these a lot.  They take off makeup well and have a really fresh scent. 

I also picked up a new astringent/toner from Neutrogena called Acne Stress Control Triple-Action Toner.  It’s supposed to help treat acne before it even emerges, probably because the active ingredient in it is salicylic acid, so we’ll see how I like it.  So far, so good. 

Lastly I got a new Essie nail polish in “Barbados Blue”, a really pretty light blue pearl.  I don’t have many blue polishes so this is a nice addition to all the other colors I have, lol. 

One last beauty item I did get was from MAC but it was free, lol.  I finally managed to remember to take all 6 of my empty product containers in and got my free lipstick for them.  I wanted to get “High Tea” but they were all out, instead I chose “Angel” which is described as a soft pink frost.  I am loving the shade though, it’s not bright but it gives just the right hint of pink that it could probably be worn by anyone.  It will probably become my “go-to” color I think.

As for fashion purchases I stopped by Sears and picked up one more pair of Kardashian Kollection jeans.  I got The Kourtney in white to go with the black top I picked up a few weeks ago.  Then I decided to wander around some which for me is usually a bad idea.  It was this weekend too because I ending up with a new pair of ankle boots.  They’re the “San Francisco” from the Kardashian Kollection.  They were on clearance for $19 then an additional 30% off that price so with tax I paid $15 for $80 boots!  And I got the last pair in my size so I was pretty jazzed.

That’s really it for my purchases this week.   I did also pick up a new Coach shamrock key fob since I had a 25% off coupon and I have a thing for shamrocks/clovers/anything Irish really, lol.

I’ll end tonight with this week's manicure.  I went with “Raise Awareness” by Essie.  This is the light pink cream I purchased a few weeks back.  It’s a bit brighter than It looks in the bottle but I think it’s very pretty and girly.  Great for spring!

That’s it for this week, I hope everyone is well and this coming week is a good one.  I’ll talk to ya’ll soon! J

Friday, March 2, 2012

Outfit of the Week

TGIF!!  Here’s this week’s outfit!

Jeans:  Kardashian Kollection (Sears)
Grey buckle top:  Kardashian Kollection (Sears)
Black heels:  Xhilaration (Target)
Signature Sophia handbag in grey with silver:  Coach
Black watch:  XOXO
Cuff bracelet in gunmetal:  no brand (Burlington Coat Factory)
Studded wrap bracelet in white:  Xhilaration (Target)
Black and white clover necklace:  Lucky in Love
Mini heart lock necklace:  Tiffany & Co.