Thursday, December 11, 2014

Gift Guide: Charitable Donations

This holiday season, some of you may have the desire to extend your giving past your circle of friends and relatives. With that in mind, I thought it pertinent to remind my readers that there are many reputable charities you could donate to this holiday season. And remember, if there's someone in your life who isn't into gift-getting, making a donation in their name is always a nice option.

Whether you choose to give to a humanitarian organization, animal welfare group, medical research institute, or any other non-profit, it's important to do your research and make sure that your dollars will provide the greatest possible benefit. It can be overwhelming, as many organizations have overlapping goals, so start with a cause near and dear to your heart, perhaps. In addition to national organizations, I'm sure many local charities in your area do beneficial work for the community, so check into that, too! If monetary donations aren't your thing, perhaps look into donating some clothes or food.

Many donations to charitable organizations are tax-deductible, so don't forget to keep track of your giving this holiday season. If you'd like to get started on your research, here are a few links to the websites of non-profits accepting donations:


I hope you're all enjoying this holiday season. There are plenty of ways to make sure everyone else enjoys it, too!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Gift Guide: Holiday Gift Sets

Holiday Gift Sets


Hello again, friends! Is there someone in your life you feel like needs something a little extra special this holiday season? Or you just really, really like them? Or you have a lot of disposable income? Well, here are some nice sets for this holiday season!

Jo Malone Travel Candle Collection $110 at Jo Malone As someone who loves home fragrance, and candles in particular, I think this set from Jo Malone is just the bee's knees. It contains travel candles in Pomegranate Noir, Pine & Eucalyptus, and Incense & Embers. Jo Malone's scents tend to fill the air in a way that makes an impression on the room without being cloying or overwhelming at all. Certainly on the pricey side, but sometimes it's nice to throw some luxury into someone's life.

Sephora Favorites Perfume Sampler $60 at Sephora Everyone has a friend who's looking for a signature scent. Is this friend one of your best? Then get her this set of perfume samples. It contains fourteen of the most popular fragrances Sephora carries, plus a voucher for a full size of one of the perfumes. Since perfume is one of those things you simply must try before you buy, this set provides the whole nine yards for a friend in need.

The Art of Shaving Kit - Sandalwood $120 at department stores Do you know a fancy man? Are you yourself a fancy man? If yes to either of the former, do you shave? If so, snag this kit, comprised of a pre-shave oil, shaving cream, and an aftershave balm, all with a luxe sandalwood scent, plus a shaving brush. The men deserve a bit of a pamper, too.

Le Creuset Cherry Mini Cocottes $75 at Sur La Table We all know someone who adores their time in the kitchen and cooking delicious meals for others. Make that person's job just that much easier with this assuredly awesome little combination cookware-serveware pieces from Le Creuset. The cherry color makes this set of three perfectly cheery. I guarantee they'll light up the home cook in your life like an ornament.

Spode Christmas Tree Candy Cane Handle Mugs $48 at Bed, Bath and Beyond What to give the host of all the Christmas festivities? In my family, we go with Spode Christmas serveware, and these mugs are totally adorable. Just imagine how perfect they'd be with some marshmallows floating on top of a piping hot chocolate! Anyone (who celebrates Christmas) would be glad to have them.


So there you go! Hope this gets you brainstorming, and I'll pop in with another addition soon :)

Monday, December 8, 2014

Gift Guide: Beauty Stocking Stuffers

Beauty Stocking Stuffers for Holiday 2014


Hey everyone! After taking a week off from my iPad, my migraines have definitely gotten less severe, so I'm feeling much better today than the last time I wrote. I also turned 26 on the 2nd! I am not at all sure where the last three years of my life went, but I finally cleaned my room yesterday, so I've accomplished something.  ANYWAY, this week, I thought I would take a break from my normally scheduled NOTHINGbecauseI'mtheworstbloggerever and bring you some gift guides! These are all gonna be pretty reasonably priced, since I'm barely an adult with money and most of the gift guides in the magazines are geared toward functional adults with high credit limits.  Onward and upward!

BiorĂ© Self-Heating One Minute Mask $6.99 at drugstores Who doesn't like a little pamper at the holidays? If you're anything like me, you've been hitting the makeup game pretty hard for the holiday season, so getting a little extra cleaning in can't hurt!

Color Me Essie Mini Polish Set Walgreens I'm sorry I don't remember how much this costs, and it doesn't appear to be for sale online anywhere, but I remember it seeming really reasonable for such lovely colors from the range. It's got four classic Essie colors, plus a glitter topper from their Luxe Effects collection.

Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balm $9.49 at drugstores A quick pop of color for the lips that feels absolutely lovely while you're wearing it, plus it's that fun twist-up crayon thing that pretty much every brand is doing these days. I think it'd look nice and cheery peeking up over the top of a stocking.

Sephora Sheet Masks $6 at Sephora I haven't tried these, but they just look like fun! Again, a pamper is always necessary around the holidays, and during the winter in general, and these single use sheet masks make it awfully easy. I almost bought one not too long ago, but I had just had an MRI that left me feeling claustrophobic and the thought of putting something over my face made me feel a bit panicky :/

L'Oreal Paris Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner $8.99 at drugstores Smooth application plus a wide range of colors make these eyeliners perfect for some makeup fun this winter. Check out the full range in drugstores and pick one for a friend that you think will compliment her eye color perfectly.

L'Oreal Miss Manga Voluminous Mascara $7.99 at drugstores This has been my favorite mascara release of the year for the long, fanned out lash look it gives. I'd recommend it to anyone looking for a bit of a dramatic eye!

Real Techniques Duo Fiber Collection $19.99 at Ulta and Kohl's Real Techniques brushes have been an excellent addition to my makeup tool collection. Created by Sam and Nic Chapman of Pixiwoo on YouTube, they're so reasonably priced, they wash beautifully, and they're all synthetic for those who prefer to avoid animal hair brushes. This collection features duo fibers, so they're great for the friend who's just getting into makeup application or suffers from a bit of a heavy hand with the blush.


I hope this gives you all a few ideas for your holiday shopping. The drugstore is a great place in general for little gifts all year round, and most brands have stepped up the quality of their offerings a lot in the last two years. Happy holidays!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Thanksgiving: Brought to You by A Beautiful Mess

If you read my blog, you DEFINITELY already read A Beautiful Mess. C'mon, we can all admit that those ladies are running one of the finest lifestyle reads the wide internet has to offer. However, if on the off chance you haven't checked it out, I wanted to share a few of my favorite posts from their lead up to Thanksgiving. As much as I love the site the rest of the year, their game is particularly strong in the late fall and winter months. Obviously, this Thursday is a lot about eating, so that's what I'm going to focus on. Without further ado...

Prosecco and Cranberry Mimosa


Let's not pretend this doesn't look like the perfect Thanksgiving aperitif. My dearest wish is to consume this as soon as possible, isn't yours?

Roasted Grape and Honey Goat Cheese Crostini


Things I love include fruit, bread, and cheese. I guess there's a few others, but none so masterfully addressed in this appetizer. Have I ever mentioned that appetizers are one of my favorite things? It's because I like eating as many different things during the course of a meal as possible. Ipso facto, tapas is my jam. I digress.

Pie Crust Cookies


DOES THAT NOT LOOK PERFECTLY DELICIOUS? Go, get thee to the site, and be happy.


Happy Thanksgiving! I hope everyone has something for which to be thankful this year.

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