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Saturday, March 31, 2012

Honey Face

Collin claims I'm going through "one of my phases" but as usual he just doesn't get it!... I've been changing how I do some of the things I do on a daily basis to go a little more "natural/green" (I don't know how else to describe it...) I've always worn mineral powder for my face makeup but BareMinerals made me breakout and I was looking for something better for my skin type. I found Everyday Minerals a couple years ago and have used it ever since. (I also have a bunch of their makeup brushes...SO SO soft!!)


I've also been on the lookout for my perfect face wash, one that also contains minimal ingredients (and ones that I can pronounce preferably). I've found a couple that were so-so but I think I've finally found the perfect, completely all-natural, and inexpensive face wash that works for me....organic raw honey! Yes. Actual honey.


But not the kind in the teddy bear bottle, which is pasteurized and contains preservatives and sometimes pesticides. It has to be ORGANIC RAW HONEY, which is more solid in texture, looks lighter in color and is more opaque than the regular, clear golden honey most people have in their pantry.
An example!
I've been using it every night for the past two or three weeks and I am really loving. It has some natural particles in it which act as an exfoliator and it makes my skin SO soft. It's not sticky either, not at all. Just splash some water on your face, use a quarter sized dollop or so (mix with a little warm water), and wash like you would with any other face wash...don't forget to lick your lips. ;)

Added bonus, it's super cheap and you get A LOT in one jar. This website>>>>The Healing Face Wash<<<< explains it pretty well and much better than I can.

Try it out! If you end up not liking it for your face you can still use it for tea or whatever else you like with honey.

Katie Company Prints

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Decorating

We've been in Colorado since September (well, Collin since July) and though we have all the furniture we need, our walls have remained pretty much bare. I FINALLY got around to decorating at least one wall last week. My parents have a large picture collage of our African safari on a wall in their family room and I've always loved it. I decided to do something along those lines too. I e-mailed a group of pictures to Walgreens to have them blown up to various sizes, bought all different kinds of frames, and arranged and re-arranged until I liked the way they looked. I used this site to help me arrange them on the wall and it worked really well!



 Of course I am missing a picture on the left because Walgreens cropped some heads off, so that will be replaced shortly.

I think it turned out really well and it makes our living room look so much better already. I have more walls to work with but who knows when that will happen!

What did we do this past weekend? Collin went snowmobiling/snowboarding at Wolfcreek, Durango-Silverton train riding, and just plain vacationing with his dad. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to go because I worked three 12-hour shifts at the hospital, woo! So, to say the least I was so tired and finally got to sleep in this morning!

Friday, March 23, 2012

St. Patricks Day 2012

For St. Patty's day, we went up to Denver to celebrate and drink with Allison! We got there pretty early and went to one of Allison's friend's house for brunch...which included homemade sticky buns, yummmm!! Everyone else rode their bikes to the parade downtown and we took the bus. It was so packed that we really couldn't even see the parade so we stayed for about 10 minutes and we all decided that it was time for a drink! Oh and after having someone cough in my face (literally) and another step on my foot I was ready to get out of there and have a drink as well. We went to the Irish Snug which was on Colfax downtown.

Me and little Ju ready to celebrate at the Irish Snug!

They had a group of irish step dancers, a live band, some activities for kids, and of course irish food and beer!



The dancers were quite entertaining. I'm not sure what the deal is with the kinky curly wigs but they all had them.


We spent the rest of the day enjoying the great weather, eating fish and chips, and drinking Guinness and Smithwicks!



I hope everyone had a great St. Patrick's day too!!

And Happy Birthday to my Poppee!! <3

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Family x2 + Denver Beer Co.

Last Monday afternoon I drove up to Silverthorne again but this time to see some of my family! My aunt, uncle, and cousin flew in for the week for some Colorado skiing and since I had off on Monday and Tuesday, I had time to join them for a couple of days! I met them in Silverthorne and we drove up to their condo. After everyone showered up (and we realized only one person could get a hot shower before the water went cold) we headed out to dinner at a place they'd tried the night before with no success. It was called the Red Mountain Grill and it had the coolest decor.







After dinner we went back to their condo, watched a little TV, and crashed. The next morning we were up bright and early and were off to Keystone by 7:45. It was an absolute perfect day, the snow was great and the sky was clear and sunny. So warm, in fact, that we were all starting to sweat after just a couple runs. 






We skiied hard, really hard. By the end of the day we'd skied 20 runs and a total of 32,000 vertical feet. Whew! I was beat!

Ready to take off the ski boots!
My favorite picture! :)
That night, John chose a New Orleans restaurant in Frisco called The Last Cajun. It was fantastic!! A little hole in the wall place (my favorite) with literally three tables plus a "bar" that you could uncomfortably eat at if the tables were full. Luckily, we ended up with a table. The food was soo good! I would definitely go back! Robyn actually did go back for their special hot sauce....which ended up being not so special since the waitress divulged that you can buy it at the local grocery store! Good to know!

The next morning I had to get back for my last few days of work and the three skiers headed to Breckenridge for another day on the mountain. 

That Thursday Collin talked me into calling in "sick" for my last day of work...I felt really guilty but he insisted it was for a good reason, to see my family again before they left! I, of course, gave in and Collin and I headed back up to Summit County Friday afternoon. We met up with the ski bunnies for dinner, this time at Pug Ryans. It was also delicious! The waitress' fiance was from Altoona PA too, small world.


They were flying out the next evening but since we brought the snowmobiles Collin invited them to come out for a ride the next morning. We planned to leave early to get a good few hours in before they had to hit the road for Denver. 




I went out for a little bit and then we went back and Robyn and I switched. I got some good reading and a nice nap in while they ripped around Vail Pass for a couple of hours. 

video

John got some nice videos with his Flip camera but my computer wouldn't let me download them so that I could put them on here :(

But they all said that they had a blast and I was so happy! 

After we said our goodbyes, Collin and I took the sleds out on our own (yes, I rode by myself!) and went to the next town over, Red Cliff. You can snowmobile all the way into the town and park and eat if you want, which is what we did. It was really fun and I reallllly like riding my own sled...although I'd still rather have a horse!

We stayed at a hotel that night and ate in Frisco again but this time at the 5th Avenue Grill, delicious again.

The next morning we packed up the truck and headed towards Denver to drop the sleds at Collin's friends house. We also got in touch with Collin's sister and met up with her at a relatively new brewery called Denver Beer Co. 


It was soo much fun. They have an awesome patio and great beer. No food but you can bring in anything you want so we got Alli's favorite pizza, Proto's. It is now my new Denver favorite too...best thin crust ever. The day was gorgeous too, it really felt like summer, everyone had tank tops on or had their short sleeves rolled up. It was also doggie heaven, every table had at least one dog...or a baby. Ideal  patio spot for sure!


I drove home, we unpacked, and I got my stuff together for my new job the next day! Very successful week + weekend to say the least!

I was SO SOO happy to see my family and wish I could see them all more often! Trying to convince my cousin to move out here too! HINT HINT!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Book Club of One

My second book from the library was titled, Postcards from Berlin by Margaret Leroy. This book was slow at times and probably could have had a few sections cut out but overall it was really interesting. It is about a mother who is suspected of inducing or fabricating her eight year old daughter's mystery illness, known as Munchausen by Proxy.

Because it went from high/interesting to low/boring, I would give this book a 5/10. It was a serious and rather deep book due to the subject matter and really made me feel awful for the mother. It seemed no matter what she did the doctors twisted it into a negative behavior directed toward her sick daughter. Not necessarily a true happy ending book either. It you're not the type to ONLY read happy-go-lucky books and are interested in the psychology of Munchausen by Proxy syndrome then you would definitely enjoy this book. I enjoyed it!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Rave Review: Nails

Warning! Warning! Nail polish post. Continue at your own risk.

So...
I love painting my nails but I hate having chips and peels two days (or less) after I take the time to paint them. I also have a really bad habit of picking at my polish. Once I start I can't stop, it's addicting and looks so ugly. Last year, I heard about a gel/polish hybrid called Shellac that some nail salons were using. Basically, it goes on like regular nail polish but is cured with a UV or LED light and lasts about 2-4 weeks, like gel nails without the damage to your natural nails.

Shellac by CND

I found a salon in good old Denver Pa and had a Shellac manicure done. It was awesome and while I do like going to the salon every once in a while, it takes time and money (about $30 - $50 a pop), both of which I don't want to waste. The other day while I was at Ulta picking up a few items, I stumbled upon a gel/polish hybrid brand exclusive to Ulta that you can do by yourself at home. The brand is called Red Carpet Manicure. 

Red Carpet Manicure

Another lady was picking out colors as I was walking by and I asked her if she liked the system. She said that she just LOVES it and is not really one to keep up with painting her nails. Sounded like a good review to me. 
When I got home I researched everything and decided that I would try it out for myself. I bought the necessary products (after researching a bit I realized that you can substitute acetone and rubbing alcohol for two of their products for less $$) including the light, for under $100. 

My assessment: This system is amazing! I'm completely hooked. They have a wide selection of colors and it lasts just as long as they say it should. My nails stayed super shiny too. 

Update: If you are persistent enough, you CAN peel them off...in one whole piece. Dang it!! I need to kick my habit! But it's easy to just repaint the one nail you peeled off and keep them looking perfect.

Collin saw my bare nails and said, "Wait, I thought you said you wouldn't be able to pick that stuff off..." welpppp, ya can apparently. 

I think that the success of this polish depends on how well you can paint your own nails AND how well you can keep yourself from picking at them.  Also, they last quite a bit longer if you remember to "wrap the edge" meaning make sure you paint the edge of the tip too or else it will start peeling after a week or so.

Day one:


Day seven:


And then I peeled it off...ugh!!

I'm going to give it another go and try try try NOT to peel it off this time!

All in all, I would definitely recommend this system! Another note: the brand sells a liquid to remove the nails (substitute with pure acetone) and a liquid to take the tacky layer off when you're finished painting/curing the top coat (sub with rubbing alcohol)...if you substitute these two things you can save some $. If anyone is interested in a list of what you really need and what you don't, just ask!  Also, I'd recommend the "professional" LED light that they sell opposed to the "portable" light. The professional one is about $45 (vs $20 for the portable) but cures your nails in about a 1/4 of the time that it takes the portable. 

Have a great weekend!!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Real Deal Job

Back in early January I applied for a new graduate RN program at one of the local hospitals. Right after I applied for that job I was offered my current job and because I was desperate at the time, I took it.
I'd followed up on the hospital job but wasn't given much info so I'd kind of put it out of my mind. But a few weeks ago I received an e-mail from the recruiter at the hospital inviting me to an "interview fair"...didn't sound fun. I was happy to have been making SOME progress with this job so I, of course, accepted and went to the interview "fair." There were 7 other new graduates there (in my group--three groups before mine) and a bunch of nurse managers from the hospital. It was conducted like a speed dating session basically. We had about 30 minutes with two or three managers at a time and then the recruiter would move us to a new group of managers and so on. I showed up with a few computer printed resumes in hand while everyone else came with leather portfolios....strike one. A couple of the managers also told me that the recruiter had received 200+ applications for these new graduate positions (they planned to hire max 15 people out of the 25+ who were selected from 200)...blow #2. After it was over I thanked all of the managers I'd talked with and went on my way. We were all told that we'd hear back in two weeks. Ooookie dokie.

So, there I was for two weeks...
On the Wednesday before the Thursday we were supposed to hear, I received a call from a secretary asking me if I'd like to come for a second interview at the North hospital (the branch RIGHT next to our apt complex). Yes I did. The manager I met with was awesome and she told me I'd hear an answer "soon." I smiled and thanked her but was really thinking...Umm ok? I was already a day past my "2 week notice" date and was feeling a little anxious about that since I thought for sure they'd give those they wanted to hire a chance to quit their job within an acceptable time frame. Guess not...

That Friday as I was literally walking out the door to work, I got a call and was offered the job!!! Of course I was ecstatic and accepted!

So I start next Monday and I cannot wait!!! I'll keep you posted on how it goes!!


So happy! :)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Book Club of One

Last month I decided to join the local public library. I love to read for pleasure but really haven't had much time in the last five or so years being busy with school. So, I got a library card and have been steadily plowing through books ever since.


I have a list of books I want to read but if I notice one on the shelf that looks interesting to me I try it out, that method has been very successful thus far! I'm going to start posting books that I read and think that you guys may enjoy too. I'm always on the lookout for a good book!

The first book I got from the library on a whim ended up being pretty good. It's by the same author of The Time Traveler's Wife, Audrey Niffenegger (sweeeeeet name!) and it's called
Her Fearful Symmetry.

Back blurb:

When Elspeth Noblin dies of cancer, she leaves her London apartment to her twin nieces, Julia and Valentina. These two American girls never met their English aunt, only knew that their mother, too, was a twin, and Elspeth her sister. Julia and Valentina are semi-normal American teenagers--with seemingly little interest in college, finding jobs, or anything outside their cozy home in the suburbs of Chicago, and with an abnormally intense attachment to one another.
The girls move to Elspeth's flat, which borders Highgate Cemetery in London. They come to know the building's other residents. There is Martin, a brilliant and charming crossword puzzle setter suffering from crippling Obsessive Compulsive Disorder; Marjike, Martin's devoted but trapped wife; and Robert, Elspeth's elusive lover, a scholar of the cemetery. As the girls become embroiled in the fraying lives of their aunt's neighbors, they also discover that much is still alive in Highgate, including--perhaps--their aunt, who can't seem to leave her old apartment and life behind.
Niffenegger weaves a captivating story in Her Fearful Symmetry about love and identity, about secrets and sisterhood, and about the tenacity of life--even after death.

So, bottom line rating: 6/10. Not too deep or moving but keeps your attention the entire time. Different than most books I read. You'll enjoy if you like ghost stories and such but it's not too hokey if you don't. Let me know if you read it!