Sunday, May 20, 2012

Zoya Nail Polish Haul

In honor of Earth Day, Zoya, a nailpolish company was offering an amazing deal for polishes.  In exchange for some of your current polish, you could get a minimum of 6 Zoya polishes for 50% off.  As part of Earth Day, Zoya promised to safely dispose of your old polishes in exchange for their toxic free polishes.  It's a win-win! 

If you are not familiar with Zoya polishes, they are toxic free polishes that are also long wearing!  Last year, I purchased 3 Zoya polishes and simply adored them.  Since then, I have been looking for a good excuse to purchase more.  So, I ended up ordering Faye which is a beautiful satin, sparkly gold.  Wednesday a simple blue turquoise.  Kimber, a fun pinkish sparkly gold.  Jules, a light goldish grey that also has some sparkle to it.  Kym, a burn orange, red, and gold.  Lastly, I also ordered Zuza, which is a beautiful, sparkly blue Caribbean color.

Faye is probably my favorite out of the bunch.  It's beautifully elegant but yet really fun.  I have been wearing Faye on my hands and Kimber on my toes for about a week.  I can honestly say that Faye needs to be removed by Kimber is still holding on strong on my toes.  Because I am lazy, I always look for long lasting polishes.
I attempted to swatch the polishes didn't turn out too well.

Which Zoya polish is your favorite?
*Note: I am not paid by Zoya nor their parent company.  I paid for everything out of my own pocket.*

Mr. Washington's Home

 Are you familiar with Mr. Washington?  Perhaps, George Washington ring a bell?  You might also remember him from popular currency like....the $1 bill or the whole fiasco with the cherry tree.

This past Friday, I was lucky enough to visit Washington's gracious estate and home known as Mount Vernon.  Mount Vernon is huge historic landmark.  It houses George Washington's mansion, farm, tomb, gardens, museum and even an orientation center.   
Although I had previously visited Mount Vernon 7 years ago, I am so happy I went back!  In my previous visit, I only had the chance of viewing the mansion because it was raining outside.  In addition, the museum and orientation center were in construction at that time.  So, this time I  had the chance to experience just about everything!  Here's an estate map for reference. 

I begun my adventure with the mansion tour.
The mansion is beautiful but more down to earth than Monticello (Thomas Jefferson's home).  Photographs are not allowed inside the mansion, but if you were to visit you would see ornate details that were focused around farming.  This is how George Washington made most of his money; farming!  What I found really interesting about the mansion is that the outside is made of wood, however, it was cleverly designed to look like brick.  They accomplished this by painting and by throwing sand onto wet paint.  This gave the wood a cement/brick feel.  It's neat!

The tour begins by entering a side kitchen which is where most of the meals were prepared.  Then, you follow the covered walkway to the actual mansion where you enter the dinning room.  At that time, paint was seen as a sign of wealth so just about everything is painted a minty green color with a white contrast.  From the tour, I learned that the mansion at one time was actually quite smaller.  The home originally belonged to George Washington's father (I think!) and once he inherited the esate, he added additional expansions.  The mansion has 3 levels, however, guests are only shown 2 floors.  The third floor is blocked off until Christmas time.  The 3rd floor is also where Martha Washington resided after her husband's death. 

After the mansion tour, the boy and I roamed around taking silly photos.  The photograph below is taken in the backyard of the mansion.  You can see the river in this shot. 
For those of you unfamiliar, Mount Vernon resides by the Potomac river.
In case you couldn't tell...I like jumping shots.  Weeee.

After some crazy, creepy shots, I explored the rest of the estate.  We were able to see the green house, slave cabin, smoke house, salt house, blacksmith, overseer's home, carriage, etc. 

I also visited the old and new tomb of George Washington.  Believe it or not, he has two tombs!  His newer tomb has miniature versions of the Washington monument.  I found this quite amusing but did not find it appropriate to photograph.

Next, we explored the pioneer farm which is still a functioning farm. To this day, it continues to operate as an 18th century farm. When we visited, they were shearing sheep...which is something I had never witnessed. 
Then we proceeded down towards the river to the wharf.  We did not purchase a river cruise, that is an additional option!  Unfortunately there wasn't much space to walk around the edge of the river since it was blocked off, but it was still enjoyable.
 I was happy to find out that Mount Vernon had a free shuttle service.  Knowing we were at the edge of the river and had to climb up the hill...was not a comforting thought for my legs.  The shuttle dropped us off at the top where I continue to explore the gardens.  There are two gardens : upper and lower.  The upper garden houses all the beautiful flowers and shrubs as shown below.  Whereas the lower garden houses the vegetables and herbs.

My visit at Mount Vernon lasted for hours and yet I was not able to fully view everything (I wasn't able to see his dentures!!)  There is so much to see and so much to do, it's no wonder that Washington believed the following:
My visit to Mount Vernon was beautiful, interesting and I left feeling like I had learning a thing or two about one of our founding fathers.  I also found myself leaving Mount Vernon with achy legs and feet!  Word to the wise, wear comfortable and supportive shoes.  I did not...and my legs are killing me!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Ruffle Felt Wreath

 I recently saw a beautiful felt wreath on pinterest that I just had to create for myself. The inspiration came from this website.  I loved how luxurious and expensive the wreath looked to the naked eye, but in reality it cost less than $10 to make. 

Although, Domestic Fluff details amazing directions, I was not happy to find out that I would have to use 100+ pins to create and secure the ruffles on the wreath.  I am a huge clumsy fool so me and sharp, pointy metal sticks don't mix.  Since I was planning on hanging my wreath outdoors, I did not want the ruffles to blow away or have them plucked off.  I wanted a more secure and permanent solution.  So, I decided to pick up my glue gun and get gluin'. 

Now, I know what you are said you were a clumsy fool, why did you pick up a hot glue gun instead?  To tell you the truth, it wasn't the brightest idea for my brute fingers.  Worry not, I have a beautiful blister on my middle finger from the hot glue!  But, happy crafting does not come without sacrifice, or cursing.  It's all part of fun!

To make this craft affordable for my frugal wallet, I frequented the fabric remnant part of Jo-Ann. By doing so, I scored myself a lovely yard of hot pink felt for $1.00!!  For the white felt, I simply used a 50% coupon for a yard of white felt.  The cost of the white felt was around $2.50.  I also used more coupons to get my Styrofoam wreath 40% off.  So, in total I only spent $6 for all of my materials (not including hot glue - I had this at home). 

To create the perfect circle shape, I used a can of spray paint and dipped it on to a stamp pad.  Then, I simply stamped my felt with the spray can to create my circles.  This made tracing sooooo much easier and less time consuming.  This tip also came from Domestic Fluff's site.  This was seriously pure genius!  Why didn't I think of it?!

 Once I had all my circles cut out, I simply folded them in half and added a bit of glue in the middle to hold the shape I wanted. 

To create the ruffle flowery look.  Be sure to pinch the circle shut, so you get a lovely looking flowery shape.  Next, simply put a dollop of glue on your wreath and secure your felt circle on top of the glue. 

I decided not to pack my circles in very tight, just so I could get a more loose ruffly look.


  I started running out of pink felt towards the end, so I tried to jam pack all of the white felt in...that's why one of the sections of my wreath appear to be longer than the rest.  Overall, I am pretty content with my wreath! 


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Target's Free Beauty Bag

A few weeks ago fellow blogger Whitney recommended I sign up to receive Target's FREE beauty bag.  The giveaway was done through Target Style's facebook page.  A free beauty bag sounded too good to be true...but today in the mail I received....

The beauty bag consisted of a purse or travel size makeup bag.  Inside were all the goodies pictured above:
Simple cleansing facial wipes
L'Oreal magic lumi light infusing primer sample
Neutrogena fresh foaming cleaner
Pantene flat to volume conditioner
Nivea extended moisture daily lotion

I can't say I am disappointed with the selection or size for something that was completely free!  The items are travel size which I feel allow me enough time and enough  product, to figure out if I like them or not. 

The first item I will be trying is the Nivea extended moisture daily lotion.  I love Nivea's hand creme so I am curious to see what it can do for my face.  I am also excited about the makeup bag because it it is the perfect purse size.  I am known for packing 10 lip glosses in a big makeup I feel the size of this bag will help me control the need carry that many glosses with me!

*I am not affiliated with Target.  These items were free to be as a consumer.  I am not sponsored by Target...that would be the day!*