March was a whirlwind punctuated by a seriously big snowstorm in the middle. It was teasing us with warmer temps and all the daffodils and crocuses started to bloom and then BAM, giant snowstorm! That’s ok though. We’re still at the very beginning of spring (and we kept our electricity!). I’m looking forward to it getting consistently warmer out so I can bring out my balcony furniture and start looking at outdoor plants.
I’m also looking forward to getting out on my bike! I haven’t ridden much since I was pregnant and then had my little guy last year. Now that he’s old enough, I can’t wait to get a seat for him for our bikes!
Before I jump too far ahead of myself, I better get going with these March favorites before this month totally passes me by.
:: March Favorites 2018 ::
+ things to check out
I recently ran out of my favorite volumizing root spray, and I was desperate to find a replacement. This fine-haired girl needed some volume stat! I stumbled on this root booster at Ulta in the clearance rack, and I’m in love. It smells great, does the job, and also acts as a heat protectant and scalp conditioner. Really really happy I found this.
A few years ago I tried the Ipsy Glam Bag box and found this great waterproof liquid liner pen. It was kind of hard to find for a long time so I used Lorac’s liquid liner, which is more than twice the price! I ran into Rite Aid the other day and found the whole line of Jesse’s girl cosmetics. What a find! I’m having a little trouble with transfer on to my top lid (I’m working on it…), but the color is really solid, doesn’t run into my eye corners, and the tip creates the prettiest fine or thick line depending on the pressure you apply. I can’t argue with a $6.99 eyeliner!
I have to admit, the Almay mascara I reviewed last time turned out to be a little goopy after using it for a few weeks. It didn’t have quiet the same texture I liked before. I did want to try another product from Almays relaunch, and thought I would give their Best Blend Forever foundation a try. I really like it! It comes with a sponge applicator which is nice, but I’m still using my eco tools beauty blender with it. The coverage is nice, it’s inexpensive, and it has SPF FORTY! That’s a win for me. I like having a high end foundation for the days I’m wearing more makeup and a lightweight inexpensive foundation for every day. This fits the bill.
My parents just got back from a trip to Disney World. My mom picked up these beautiful soap set from the France pavilion in Epcot. I love all the fun souvenirs she buys me when she visits. She has such good taste in all the little goodies she sends. She also knows that violet is my favorite scent and it’s impossible to find! I don’t know why violet notes in fragrances have really gone out of style. They are so pretty and classic. Anyway, she knows my long search and was able to find these adorable macaron-shaped violet soaps with included sachets just for me!
I recently got this gorgeous iridescent purple nail polish from Zoya. They are my very favorite polish brand because of their non-toxic formulations, nice brushes, and pretty colors. They were one of the original formulas that were five-free and didn’t include toxic chemicals in their bottles. If you’ve never tried this brand and are stuck on OPI and Essie, it’s really worth a try!
It’s funny, I love food and never really review fun food items on my blog. A box of these stroop waffles really inspired me to include them. They are SO GOOD and totally addictive. The fun thing is that you can place them right on top of a hot coffee or tea mug and the caramel starts to soften and get a little melty. They’re the perfect treat for dessert and a really nice gift idea. Unfortunately, a giant box of 25 didn’t last long in our house…
Our next door neighbors are the entrepreneurs behind Boardroom Spirits, a local distillery that is starting to become more widely available in our area. We were able to attend one of their cocktail workshops recently, and had so much fun tasting and mixing new creations. Their flavored vodkas are really unique because they use Hungarian distilling techniques to infuse the vodka with natural fruit and vegetable flavors, instead of all the chemicals and artificial flavors of typical vodkas. This is a huge plus and really cuts the calorie count in their cocktails. We love their carrot vodka (how unique!) for Bloody Marys. It gives them a nice clean flavor and adds a little sweetness.
Asian grocery store matcha
Does anyone else love matcha and have the hardest time shelling out the cash for it? It can get really expensive, which kept me away from it for a long time. On a recent trip to our local Korean supermarket, I found a bunch of different brands of powdered matcha for smoothies, lattes, and desserts at seriously discounted prices. If you are a matcha addict like I am, try visiting your local Asian grocery store for deals.
+ things to read, watch, and listen to
Photo: Bethel Music
Singles have started dropping recently as a warmup to the release of my very favorite worship artist’s second album. I couldn’t be more excited! Steffany Gretzinger is a powerful, powerful prophetic voice in worship music today. She is a creative songwriter and epic spontaneous worshipper. Steffany came on my radar years ago after binging on Bethel Music youtube videos (check out this totally bonkers spontaneous moment on youtube). Her style is unbridled, unrestrained, and unlike anyone else I’ve seen. I was lucky enough to see her live a few years ago, and ended up lost in a world of praise for almost three hours. I could have soaked there for another three, to be honest. Her new single, Save Me, is a vulnerable admission of her dependency on God, and her search for a rescue from her own limitations. Really powerful stuff.
Photo: Jonathan & Melissa Helser
I mentioned this podcast in a recent post and can’t express how much it has truly inspired me recently. It’s mostly a collection of their talks and testimonies at various workshops and in their own school called the Eighteen Inch Journey. I love their simplicity, honesty, vulnerability, and the grace with which they describe their experiences with God and all His graces and mercies in their life. Worth checking out for sure!
Photo: Kacey Musgraves
I am a really big Kacey Musgraves and her honest, ironic, and true Country Western style of music. Singles have been trickling out from this album, and I’m loving the fresh new style. She is hugely talented and has a way of making the lyrics sad and tough and joyful and funny all at the same time. The single High Horse is a special favorite so far (if disco country were a thing, I would describe that single as disco country).
Photo: Kylie Minogue
Hmmm… must be a golden theme going around in the music world these days! Her first two singles that have come out from this album are a.maz.ing. Ugh. I love her so much! She headed to Nashville for this album and the country twang on top of her pop/dance style is such a great innovation for this epically talented perennial pop princess. I’m very excited by her new direction and to see how she will embrace this new incarnation on tour and in her music videos.
I haven’t been reading many books lately, but have really been digging into some great long articles on Longform. I’ve read articles about cults, crazy tidbits from history, journalistic investigations, and all the cool niche things that interest me. It’s searchable by topic and includes pieces from publications like Vanity Fair, the Washington Post, and the Atlantic. I love that I don’t have to bother with logging in to various sites and can save them all on Instapaper for easy reading in the future. It’s great to set aside a block of time to really dig into a story. Longform has been a long favorite for me.
I’ve been rewatching some old seasons of my very favorite tv show, Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team. It’s the only tv show where I will stop what I’m doing to catch each episode as they are released. I love watching the hopefuls as they go through the audition process and work through a grueling training camp before the Dallas Cowboys first home game. It might seem like being an NFL cheerleader is kind of a silly sideline gig to the game, but there’s some serious hard work, dedication, and talent that goes into each of their performances. Their uniform was recently inducted into the Smithsonian, and I think that shows how much we impact these young women have had who dance at the peak of their career and help show us that even small town girl dreams can come true. Every season is really inspiring, and gets me to start working my tail off at home and putting a little extra into my workouts.
Is it just me, or is everyone losing track of all these winter storm names? I can’t remember what this Nor’Easter was called but it was pretty epic. It snowed for two days straight without a stop. I think it dumped about 10-14 inches in my neck of the woods. As someone who loves winter and snow, I was pretty excited! I love when the whole world shuts down, and I get to play in the snow with my family. I bundled the little guy up and took him in the snow for some snow angels and snowballs. I’m sad that the season is almost up for giant snowstorms, but am glad to start seeing a little more sunshine.
visit with my folks
My parents drove all the way from Ohio to come visit us here in Pennsylvania. It’s a long haul, so I’m very proud of them. They stayed for a few days, and were able to hang out with their grandson and make him laugh. I got to shop with my mom for a few hours, which was desperately needed! She’s a pretty good shopping companion. We also went to some favorite local spots for food and watched a few good tv shows and movies. They are very low key, so we didn’t have any big city adventures or anything. Just fun family time together.
We signed up for Little Gym at the end of last month I think, and have been having so much fun playing with all the gymnastics equipment. My little fella is kind of reserved in big chaotic settings until he gets more comfortable, so I’m happy to have this introduction to the wide world outside of my very chill home. He’s been having fun with bubbles, balls, balance beams, and somersaults. Its’s seriously the cutest.
blogging, blogging, blogging
I’ve been writing a lot more lately, so that has been a lot of fun. I’m trying to keep things fresh around here and provide a lot of good content for you. I enjoy writing and it’s good to have a fun outlet for it. Granted, my real intent is to keep some sanity in my stay at home mom life, but it’s also nice to get followers and feedback. I read every word! I’ve also been tweaking a few of my posts and design lately and learning all kinds of things about photography and website design. I’m happy to keep learning, and growing, and experimenting!
teatime with friends
One of my favorite activities is visiting another stay at home mom friend nearby and her sweet daughter. We generally let the kids play while we spill the tea (literally and figuratively). She’s always making delicious baked goods and stocking her pantry with gorgeous tea sets and teas. Such a nice, relaxing time.
Formula One season opener
I can’t believe it, but I took exactly zero pics of a recent brunch our family attended with our friends who are also addicted to Formula One racing. We decided to put together some mimosas and baked goods to watch Ferrari race past Mercedes to start the season. I generally root for Max Verstappen, but I can’t help cheering for anyone who unseats Lewis Hamilton. Any other Fomula One fans out there?
our twentieth dating anniversary!
My husband and I have been together for twenty years today! I am so grateful I got to grow up with this kind, patient, and sweet man. We were just teenagers when we met on a blind date for my sorority formal in 1998. We have built an amazing life together, and I couldn’t have asked for a better companion on this journey. I love him more every day.
There you have it! March favorites. I hope you’re able to enjoy some of these things for yourself, and look forward to all that April brings.
What are you most looking forward to this spring? Are you planning any outdoor projects?