Hello 2017

“Commit to the Lord, whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.” – Proverbs 16:3

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Just like that another year has come to a close. I’m amazed by how fast the year has whizzed by just like a movie on fast forward.  2016 has to be one of the best years of my life to date! Every month something new and exciting and last but not least something that would challenge and push me further out of my shell.

With that being said- I know 2016 was hard on people in the world with so many deaths, and the different crisis, and shootings giving people that element of fear and anxiety. I know it was almost nerve wrecking to wake up every morning and read a headline!

In my own little world- 2016 will always hold a special place in my heart. I remember when I was probably 10 or 11 I decided what I wanted to do with my life. I knew where I wanted to be at- where I wanted to attend college everything was mapped out. I was determined to get there. 2016 was the year that I had envisioned so many years ago come full circle.

I graduated from Black Hills State University. My childhood dream came true! After many late nights, anxiety attacks, and millions of cups of coffee- I had done it. I sat in the gymnasium in a cap and gown waiting for my name to be called. And before I knew it (even though it took way too long!) my name was called and I walked across the stage and just like that. The best four years of my life were now behind me. Don’t get me wrong I don’t miss the anxiety or the late nights of homework. The things I do miss is the things that I get to take with me everyday. The friendships and the lessons I learned- and the determination to chase after my dream whole heartily not caring what others might think.

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I’m a planner I love to plan things! Obviously if I knew where and what I wanted before I had even made it to high school! However; I’ve learned maybe there are things that are much better not planned to a “T”. Don’t get me wrong I still love a good plan and knowing what’s going to happen. While I was in college and a lot of my friends were getting their dream jobs and preparing to take the big leap into the career world. There was me- not sure where to turn or better yet how to even figure out- what is next. With an underlining fear of not doing anything my heart stopped. I was scared. What next? The unknown is very scary and let’s be honest no one likes not knowing what is going on.  I found maybe this unknown period of my life won’t be so bad after all. The perfect time to do a little traveling, no responsibilities, and finally learn who Emily is without being a student first.

I’m so excited and optimistic over what is to come in  2017. I’m not one for making big massive and elaborate new year resolutions. I love setting myself little manageable goals and then following through. However; this year I’ve decided to push myself a little bit more out of my shell. And focus on who Emily is and better yet what’s to come! 2016 has been an amazing start of figuring out what I like, what I don’t like where I want to go where I don’t want to go. And that’s the most fun about growing up.

However; it’s time to put that in action! Time to put myself out there and not allowing the fear to paralyze me from the expectation I had in my head over what I think it should have been to begin with.

In 2016 I graduated, moved back home, faced my fears and launched my blog, traveled, explored, laughed, and probably drank way too many cups of coffee.

Cheers 2016! Hello 2017- you are looking mighty good!

“Above all, try something” – Franklin D. Roosevelt

“Courage doesn’t mean you don’t get afraid.

Courage means you don’t let your fear stop you” – Unknown

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Merry Christmas!

Can you believe it another year has past? Holy smokes!

To ring in the new cheer. And to celebrate probably one of the best times of the year! All gathered with friends and family. And hold the ones close to your heart who couldn’t make it home. Laughter is heard, dancing in the kitchen, eating Christmas cookies- and hey maybe a snowball fight to boot! My heart is so happy as I sit and look at the faces of my loved ones surrounding me- as they are on their phones, eating food, or simply just sitting in comfortable silence as we all watch TV.

I hope your Christmas is as amazing and you feel all the love you deserve. Christmas is the best and happiest of times. So raise your glass of egg nog with me now as we cheer in the best night of the entire year!

Let’s carry the joy, the happiness, and the merriment of overwhelming amount of love you feel tonight to extend into the best year yet! Here’s to dreamers seeing their dream, for the quitters who see their potential, the content to get out and do something new, to the explores to seeing the world through a different lens, and finally here’s to you and to me as we join hands and jump into the best yet to come!

To wrap up here is one of my favorite monologues of all time

I see a vacant seat in the poor chimney-corner,

And a little crutch without an owner.

If these shadows remained unaltered by the future, the child will die.

If he be like to die, he had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.

Your very words, Scrooge.

Decrease the surplus population

Man if man you be in heart, forbear that wicked cant.

Will you decide what men shall live, and what men shall die?

It may be that in the sight of of Heaven you are more

Worthless and less fit to live than millions like this poor man’s child.

You have seen the spirit of Christmas bless this poor dwelling.

They were not a handsome family, they were not well dressed

Their clothes were scanty and their shoes far from being water-proof

But they were grateful, pleased with one another, and contented

With the Christmas time. They are my children.

Have you learned your lesson?

Don’t wait for January 1st or next Christmas Eve for the lessons that could change your life. Learn from the lessons of the past, present, and future. Just like Tiny Tim says;

“God Bless Us Everyone!”

From me to you- Merry Christmas!

Winter Night Routine

Something about taking time out for yourself is one of those things to never loose sight of. During the winter I always find it the easiest to let your hair down and unwind and take a breath and relax and little. I come home from work and typically either eat a snack or two and then eventually go and work out and then catch up on any chores or extra work I had to get done.

Finally around 8 to 9 at night I close down my laptop and decide to stop doing any type of work for the evening and take some time and calm down and unwind. The first thing I do actually is wash my face free of any makeup or dirt from the day. I actually think washing my face is one of my favorite things to do. If I have a clean face and wearing comfortable clothes on- I one hundred percent already feel so much relaxed.

First thing if I’m wearing any eye makeup I use a cotton pad and take it off with eye make up remover. This night however; I wasn’t wearing any eye makeup so I jumped a step and went into step two!  IMG_2920.jpg

First I wet my entire face and then I squeeze some into my palms and start washing my entire face with the scrub. Using a warm wash cloth I wash off the scrub.

Step two I wet another cotton pad with Garnier Micellar Water- I love this stuff! It makes my skin feel amazing and clean to boot and who doesn’t love feeling like they know for sure that their face is clean without a trace of makeup or dirt.

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You all know how much I love a good bubble bath- something about surrounded by candles and just taking my mind off of anything. I have this thing if I wake up cold that morning with a chill it stays for hours- and honestly that is probably every day in the winter.

I love baths- the perfect place to clear your head and to help prepare myself for the next day or to help ease the day’s woes away down the drain. While the  water is running I go into my bedroom and make it all cozy. I switch on the bed warmer, turn on the Christmas lights to make my room all cozy and keeping the warm and coziness going.

After my room is done I make the bathroom all cozy! I light a few candles, grab my laptop, go through my Lush collection and pick the best! Once I have made my decision I’m set!

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To add in more bubbles I love to use a little bit of a bubble bath!

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And I’m set! I set up my laptop and I’m good to go! While in the bath I like to stay relaxed and calm while catching up on some YouTube or catching up on one of my favorite shows on Netflix- it all depends on my mood.

While I’m in the bath I like to use this time as a little pamper time and a little me time too. After I relax for awhile and the bubbles are slowly disappearing. I sometimes shave my legs. I have very sensitive legs- to prevent I use a sensitive razor and baby oil.

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While I’m in the bath I love to focus on my face as well- while I’m relaxing I love to focus on my face as well. After I wash my face and cleanse it I love to use a mask to get a deeper clean as well.

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I love these Biore self heating on minute mask- they are amazing! All you have to do is wet your face and then open the packet rub it together and apply to your face. Apply and the mask will automatically heat up and is doing the job automatically. Quick and easy!

While in the tub you have to clean your body don’t ya? I love to use a body scrub and then using a body scrub brush to get rid of the dead skin. I have been using and loving the new Lush’s Salt and Peppermint Bark body scrub- smells like Christmas! IMG_2898.jpg

Next a body conditioner to smooth out all the dead skin I just scrapped off my body- and it gives your body a tingling sensation and feeling oh so soft!

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Once done with my bubble bath I instantly put on my pajamas. This time of year I automatically reach for my Christmas themed pajamas. I’m wearing red and green plaid pants that I got from Target and then I paired it with a Christmas shirt that I got from Etsy from here.

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After I get into my pajama’s- I go back into the bathroom and finish washing my face. I use my Lush Tea Tree toner water. Then use my Burt’s Bee Herbal Blemish Stick. And the finish it off with my Cetaphil moisturizer.

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Once I’m done in the bathroom I go back to my room and grab my lotion and apply it all over my body to add more moisture to my body from the body conditioner and the bubble bath from earlier.

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After my face is washed I go into the kitchen and make myself a cup of tea. You know the saying a cup of tea before bed helps good dreams come to you. Okay maybe not but a cup of tea before bed just goes together and sometimes I help myself to a little treat!

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And I climb into my nice warm bed- and put on a movie or watch some TV. I go on my computer to go on social media or catch up on YouTube or do some last minute writing or editing. Once’s my tea is gone  I bring my tea cup back to the kitchen and I head back to my bathroom to brush my teeth and set my alarm and start getting ready for bed. And then I go back to my bed and put on more lotion on my feet put on some socks. Then I take my vitamins. I have always had a hard time getting to sleep at night.

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I am one of those weird people who needs to have something playing in the background when I go to sleep I think it’s because I have an overactive imagination and listening to something else helps quiet my mind. I normally listen to my Calm.com app or I love to listen to When Calls The Heart or another movie or TV show that I love and familiar with. Finally I use some lip scrub and chap stick- because let’s be honest chapped lips in the winter are no fun!

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And now it’s finally for this girl to catch some beauty sleep! But last but not least I put on a little bit of sleepy time lotion on my hands so while I sleep I can smell my hands- ha!

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The only thing I have left to say- Sweet Dreams!

What do you do on your pamper night?

 

 

 

 

The Uglier The Better

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Every year around this season I turn into a Christmas version of King Midas. Everything I touch turns into Christmas. Once Thanksgiving is over and it’s officially accepted to be listening to Christmas music and to be actually excited for everything Christmas.

That’s when I pull out the very beloved and garish Christmas sweaters that I pretty much live in from after Thanksgiving until Christmas! Since I love Christmas oh so very much- I want everything Christmas to surround me at all times that my clothing as to be Christmas themed.

I kind of think every one has their own style of Christmas style. They either own one and will only wear it on Christmas day, or they are obsessed with Christmas and own more then one. Ugly sweaters are so much fun to rock during the Holiday season you either have the mellow ones that might have a little saying or a snowman or reindeer, then you have some that are a little bit more tacky and have giant characters on it and give you a scene, and then finally there are some that are so garish with lights and music oh my! What isn’t there to love?

The uglier the better- more tacky, the lights, the music bringing laughter and cheer to all those around you. Ugly Christmas Sweaters are such a fun trend to be apart of. I say enjoy the time of the year where something tacky or sometimes hideous can bring you cheer and excitement and let’s not forget- comfort!

So  pick up one- because everyone needs a Christmas sweater in their closet what would you be rocking- a mellow one or a tacky one?

Staying In With A Good Book

I love to read. Always have loved reading probably will always love reading. However; I find it more fun cuddled in front of the fireplace with hot chocolate- warm fuzzy socks, a giant blanket, and a big over sized sweatshirt and I am in a winter’s dream.

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I love a good book! I have a very over active imagination. I can visualize the characters, places, and by the end of the book I have formed a rather strong attachment to the characters, places in the book, and themes. And it feels like I’m leaving a vacation that  I don’t want to end or saying goodbye to some of my very best friends!

Entering into a brand new world or revisiting a old familiar world open up brand new adventures to be had all from the comfort of my favorite chair.

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Add in Christmas elements and what a deal! Every year as part of tradition- y’all know how much I love tradition! I read two books every year! Simply because I love everything about it. One being Charles Dickens, ‘The Christmas Carol’ I mean it’s one thing to watch a variation of the story line in a Hallmark movie or to watch the play. For me however; I feel like sometimes reading the book you learn so much more about what Charles Dickens wanted you to learn- maybe something you will not catch from the get go.

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The second book I have to read at least once a year is actually by my favorite author- Karen Kingsbury. Last Christmas the book actually came out as a Hallmark movie and I actually did really enjoy the movie. However re-reading a book that you really love is almost like going back to a family vacation that you loved or putting on an old sweater that screams comfort. Another fun fact: This is actually my favorite book of all time!

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And finally my third one is actually a brand new Karen Kingsbury book that I actually haven’t read yet! However; it’s based on her make believe family- the Baxter Family which is actually my favorite series! I was beyond excited when I found out she was going to be writing another Christmas book and for it be revolving around my favorite and precious Baxter family. I’m so excited to dive right into it. I’ve decided to wait a little bit. The longer I wait before reading the longer the story will be well in my mind that makes sense. Ha!

What is your favorite holiday read?

What’s in my Holiday Makeup Bag?

 

One of my favorite thing about the Christmas season is actually channeling my inner Audrey Hepburn and rock a classic black eyeliner and a red lip. I think rocking a red lip around this season is the perfect finishing touch. Before heading out the door to that holiday work party or a family Christmas dinner.

I always like going for a more natural look in the winter with a pop of a beautiful lip color. You look healthy and put together without sacrificing that extra ten minutes wrapped up in bed all while looking polished and sophisticated.

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Revlon Color Stay Foundation Ivory

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Ivory

Revlon Color Stay Translucent Powder 

Elf Contour Palette Assorted

Elf Golden Bronzer 

Elf Illuminating Palette 6E01MT 

L’Oreal Paris True Match Blush Barley Blushing 

Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain Romantic

Maybelline Brow Drama Soft Brown

Physicians Formula Liquid Eyeliner Ultra Black

L’Oreal Paris Infalliable Never Fail EyeLiner Black 

Physicians Formula Organic Wear Mascara Ultra Black 

L’Oreal Paris Voluminous False Fiber Lashes Black Lacquer

Decking the Halls

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I love Christmas! Which I’m sure you all could see by now. Even though I know for some of I probably went  a little over board but who doesn’t love being surrounded by Christmas lights twinkling, candles flickering, and Christmas trees while being all cuddled up under your electric blanket and a hot chocolate. That’s what winter is for right?

“Tis the season to be jolly fa-la-la!”