Self-Care

Today I want to talk about self-care! Something I’m honestly not that great at. I get so busy that I honestly don’t realize I’m not taking care of myself until my body basically shuts down for a few days and forces me too. Which isn’t a good thing! I need to learn, just like you, how to really take care of myself!

I wanted to share some self-care tips that I have been incorporating into my daily life and have really helped me stay relaxed.

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Drinking a lot of water: I’ve noticed that my energy levels depend a lot on how much water I’m drinking. I’ve been giving myself a goal of 4 16oz. water bottles to drink a day. I even started adding a NUUN vitamin to add some flavor and extra electrolytes. Click here to check them out. Each package comes with 12 tablets that you add to your water and they are so yummy. I don’t like buying juice at home so this is a great alternative!

Getting a good night’s sleep: I am someone who needs a good night’s sleep in order to full function the next day. I try to get at least 7 hours a night. If I can get 8, I’ll take it. If you’re like me though, your mind just continues to work until the late hours of the night. I actually received this REN pillow spray in my Bless Box last week and have been using ever since. It seriously has been helping me get to sleep quick and help to relax my mind. Prior to that, I would take one OLLY sleep vitamin. Of course, it’s completely natural. But it would also help my mind calm down enough for me to actually sleep. If you want to try the spray click here! If you want to check out the vitamin, click here!

Face Masks: Every other night I have doing a sheet mask. Mainly for hydration right now because the weather has my skin super dry. Doing a face mask helps to force me sit down on the couch with a glass of water and just close my eyes for a bit. Because I can’t do anything else with those things on my face! I really love going to Target to pick up the sheet masks they have. They’re under $3 and I can pick up different ones based on the issue with my skin I’m having. If you haven’t done this, you need to go to Target today and pick some up! Here are some of my favorites! Hint…I love them all!

Devotionals: Starting my day with devotionals has really helped me as well. I notice when I don’t spend time with God, I feel off. And I think that has been the biggest issue that I have had these past few weeks. When I sat down and really took a self-reflection of my past few weeks, I really noticed that I was lacking my devotional time. And I saw how it was affecting me. If you need some suggestions on devotionals, here are some that I would recommend! I also really love my YouVersion Bible App. I can pick a devotional off of that and do that first thing in the morning. It makes it so easy to read the Word!

  • New Mercies by Paul Tripp
  • James Challenge – YouVersion
  • Women on a Mission – YouVersion

There you have it! Those are the things that I have been incorporating to get myself back on track! What are some of your favorite things to do to unwind?!

Currently Obsessed With – Beauty Edition

I wanted to share 3 of my current beauty product obsessions!! I use these practically everyday and I’m completely in love with each.

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Kristin Ess Curly Defining Crème – So I started following Kristin Ess on Instagram a couple of months ago. Her feed seriously gives me hair envy. I just can’t even with all her gorgeous hair looks. I saw that she also had her own line of hair products so I decided to pick this one up to give it a try! So my first time using it, I used too much product. I wasn’t paying attention when I squeezed out the bottle and I got the amount of probably a quarter that I used on my hair. It kept my curl but it did make my hair feel a little too greasy for my like. When I used that much, I noticed I couldn’t go a second day without washing my hair. The next two times I used the product I kept experimenting with the amount of product to actually use to get the texture that I like for my hair in particular. It came down to using about a dime sized amount of product in my hair. Sometimes I’ll squeeze like an extra dot in there for good measure. Because my hair is on the thinner side but also curly, when I use product of any amount in my hair, I have to wash it the next day. It usually feels super greasy the next day. I still love using this product when I’m air drying my hair because it does give my curls a nice shape. All-in-all, I would recommend trying this product out.

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Pacifica Dream Big Mascara – This has been like my all-time favorite mascara. I’m so glad I impulsively purchased it. This gives my lashes such length and definition I can’t even. I’m a mascara junkie and have tried A LOT of brands. I have baby length lashes so I need something that will give me some good definition and length. Added bonus – it’s vegan and under $20!! Like come on!! I can’t get more excited about this if I tried. Once you’re done reading this post, just drive over to Target and pick one up for yourself. Don’t feel like going out? Don’t worry, I linked it here for you!!

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Pacifica Dreamy Youth Moisturizer – Because I loved their mascara so much, I decided to try their moisturizer. Another product that I love. This is a day and night youth moisturizer so it has anti-aging properties. It has Fleuracell complex with concentrated floral stem cells for anti-age. Plus, it deeply moisturizing my skin and has improved the overall radiance of my skin. Honestly, I feel like my face was starting to look super dull but now, let me tell you the glow that I have! People honestly think I’m pregnant because of it. And I’m not. Not even close. And I’m okay with that. Let my glow from this awesome moisturizer and nothing else please…. Anywho! Another product I would highly recommend. You can shop this brand here!

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What are some of your current beauty obsessions?? Leave a comment below!

xoxo, 

mp

Recipe of the Week: Mongolian Beef Ramen Noodle

This weeks recipe is from Yummly, one of my favorite apps. This week I decided to try the Mongolian Beef Ramen Noodles recipe.

If you don’t have the Yummly app, check out the preview here!

 

Here is my take on the recipe:

To be honest, we LOVED this recipe! The flavors were amazing and it was so easy!

The only two differences that I had when I re-created this recipe were two ingredients. The first was with the sesame oil. I thought that I had some in my pantry when I was grocery shopping so I didn’t bother to buy any more. Well of course, when I started cooking I saw that I actually didn’t have any sesame oil! Of course, right? Always happens. So instead I just substituted olive oil.

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Another issue that I had was that my grocery store didn’t have the normal packs of ramen noodles. So, I had just buy some thin Asian noodles. It still tasted amazing but I’m going to try the recipe again when they have the regular ramen noodles in stock.

I would definitely recommend trying this recipe. It tastes amazing, you will love it!!

Enjoy!

xoxo,

mp

Life Updates…

Hey loves, I wanted to kind of give a life update since I realized a lot has changed in the last month or so and I haven’t really shared much. It’s been quite the rollercoaster of emotions to be completely honest. I don’t really think I’ve fully come to a place where I can say I’m no longer emotional about everything that happened.

It’s also hard to figure out how much you should share about your personal life and how much you should hold back. But what I can say is that within the last few weeks, I was recently laid off from my job. It was a crazy experience and I didn’t see it coming. I knew that God was beginning to transition us into a different season of our lives but I never anticipated that this transition could happen so fast. This wasn’t happening according to my timeline. But it turns out it was God’s timeline.

In this moment, I really needed to think about my faith and trust in God. Did I really trust Him enough to know that He will supply our each and every need like it says in Philippians 4:19?

 

Philippians 4:19: “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”

 

So, of course that thinking reigned in my head for a few days after everything happened. But as the days have gone by, I have started to realize that I do have that faith and trust in God. And that maybe this needed to happen in order for me to realize that I do have that faith. William (my husband) and I are coming to such a weird place in our lives. We are seeing one-chapter end and another begin. It’s such a weird feeling. Because you can see what is ahead and you just want to get to that point already and just be done with it. But at the same time, you really can’t do that. You have to see this out to the very end. Only then can Chapter 2 really begin. So, to be honest, it’s just really weird.

But it’s also very exciting. I feel like William and I are finally getting to a point in our lives where are seeing all of our hard work come to fruition. We are finally able to starting setting down the path that we have been waiting for, for so long. And it’s a great feeling. Of course, this new chapter means moving to another place, graduating and starting a new life, which is all exciting. But it’s also kind of sad to see this chapter that we are currently in end. I know that I’ve said to a lot of people how excited I am to finally be done with this chapter and move on. But to be honest, it hasn’t really been that bad. God has provided for us these past two years here and really grown us. It’s hard to see that growth while you are going through it but as you look back you can really see what has changed. My marriage has grown stronger, my relationship with the Lord has grown stronger, I’ve come to fully trust and have faith in God like I have never before. It’s amazing really.

Hebrews 11:1: “Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see.”

I’m even more excited to see what challenges lye ahead of us and what type of growth we will experience at that point as well. For now, I’m home blogging full time and finishing my graduate degree. I’m really enjoying this time of rest and I’m trying to make the best of it by staying somewhat active. So, if you have any topics you’d like me to cover in a future post, just let me know! Leave a comment below!

xoxo,

mp

Recipe of the week: Cheesy Skillet Bean & Veggie

This week the recipe I’m sharing is found from Yummly. It’s a Cheesy Skillet Bean & Veggie Taco Meal. The recipe is linked via the name of the recipe if you want to try it out!

If you don’t have the Yummly app, here is what it looks like:

 

It’s super easy to use and gives a lot of great recipes to choose from. You can select the meal you are looking for recipes for or you can select a style of food, for example, Italian or Mexican. They have tons of great options. I would definitely suggest downloading this app. Best part is, its FREE!!!!

Here is my take on the recipe:

This recipe was super easy to follow. What I love about this recipe is that you can use your choice of meat or you can go meatless. We decided to try this recipe meatless. I try to have at least one day of the week where we eat a meatless meal. But that is our preference.

What I loved about this recipe is that it incorporated a lot of veggies. Which is something I love doing. Plus, I love all the flavors that it had. We decided to eat this with chips so it felt more like a heavy dip but it was still delicious. I also topped ours with a little bit of shredded cheese and fresh avocado, another favorite in our household.

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If you love spicy flavored food, this is definitely a good try. You can control the amount of spice by lowering the amount of cayenne pepper you use. I tend to like my food on the spicier side so I went exactly with what the recipe suggested.

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I would definitely recommend this recipe and I would actually do this again. Maybe the next time I’ll add some grilled chicken to the mix!

Give this recipe a try by clicking here to view the entire recipe. Enjoy!

xoxo,

mp

 

Round bowl: Target

Table linen: H&M

Pixi by Petra Review

I decided to post this week about my latest beauty purchase. I had a lot of questions about the products that I used in my Instagram post from a couple weeks ago about the make-up products that I used. This past month, I really decided that I wanted to move towards more cruelty-free and/or vegan makeup. My skin is extremely important to me (and it should be the same with you!) so I’m trying to be very conscience of what products that I’m using. I decided to start with my makeup. I researched a few brands of different levels of makeup there are. Of course, just like any other brand of makeup, you have your drug-store level and your department store level. I decided to start with something that was more drugstore level. One of the brands that I started with was Pixi by Petra. This brand is currently at Target.

Because I’m so new to the vegan makeup scene, I decided to look up some websites that are centered around everything vegan. One I found extremely helpful is The Ethical Elephant. On this site, you can search specific brands of makeup that you may be curious about and it’ll show you a list of products that specific company carries that are vegan. I would definitely recommend this site if you are new to this vegan makeup area just because it’s very helpful and easy to navigate.

Check out this video on the website and how I navigated around it:

Another website that I found really helpful, was actually the PETA.org website. Of course, this site has so much more information than just beauty and make-up, but they still have this information on there. Here is an example of how I navigated their website.

 

When I decided that I wanted to check out some new brands of makeup, of course I researched using The Ethical Elephant and the PETA website and found the Pixi by Petra brand. Of course, this brand is found at my favorite store, Target!!! So, of course, there was just an excitement in just being able to leave the house and go to Target.

So, using the information that I found on what specific items from this brand were considered vegan, (because they have a few items that aren’t considered vegan but everything is cruelty-free) I went to the beauty aisle to see what they have. I found the following items that were both cruelty-free and vegan.

  1. Correction Concealer – I used this concealer a few times. I wasn’t too in love with the color, I think I picked the wrong color. But it was really easy to use and the consistency was also nice.
  2. Flawless & Poreless Primer – I actually like this primer. It does give a nice poreless look. Also easy to use and I really liked the consistency and coverage.
  3. Beauty Bronzer – I really like this bronzer. It gives a nice color. It’s not extremely bold but it’s great for an everyday look. I’ve been using this bronzer for my everyday makeup. It still gives me a nice color even though it’s not a heavy color.
  4. Lash Boosting Mascara – This mascara is actually really great. I love the depth of color and the ease of application.
  5. H2O Skintint – This is a great light weight coverage. It’s not a full coverage makeup but it’s great for those days when you need something quick before you head out for the day. But I do love this product and have been using it very frequently.
  6. Lash Line Ink  – I also love this product. It goes on super smooth and leaves a great pigment color.

I think through using these products, I was more just surprised that these products are vegan. They were really great quality wise and I’m really happy that I tried them!

There are some other beauty brands that I am wanting to try out that are both vegan and cruelty-free that I will be sharing in another post.

What are some beauty concerns that you have? Share them below!

Xoxo,

mp

 

 

BareMinerals Foundation Review

Recently, I was chosen to review Bare Minerals new foundation formulated just for me using their new app through Influenster. This technology is really interesting. You basically download the app and follow all of the instructions. You need to calibrate your phone camera using 5 sheets of white paper. You basically tap your phone on the 5 white sheets of paper in different spots for a few seconds each tap. Once you do that, you will do the same process except different places on your face. With those photos, they formulate the color of your foundation and personalize the bottle with your name.

Here is a preview of what the app looks like.

 

It’s actually really easy to use and really cool. I’m really surprised at the outcome. When it first arrived, I was surprised by the color. It seemed darker than I thought it would be. But once I applied it, it looked really great on my skin. The consistency was fantastic and the coverage is sheer to medium. But you can build upon that. It lasted great all-day long.

I would definitely recommend trying this foundation out. It’s really lightweight formula as well that has nourishing and antioxidant ingredients including green tea extract, Vitamin E and peptides as well as ceramide, chamomile and white lily flower.

 

If your feeling adventurous, download the app here and get your color matched foundation today! This product is reasonably priced when you think of the benefits and ingredients, and since I’m always on the lookout for great products for my skin, I thought I would share this new product with you!

What is your favorite BareMinerals product? Have you tried BareMinerals before? If so, let me know below!

xoxo, 

mp 

*I received this product free for testing purposes from Influenster but all opinions are my own.