Round-Up: November 2017

Round-Up: November 2017


I was going to say that this November 2017 was my most eventful month of the year.  But then I thought through the  rest of the year and realized a lot happened in 2017: Army OCS graduation in February, moving in April, finding out in July we are moving again, another graduation in August, my daughter turning two in September, and then of course this month.  Those were all big and fairly life-effecting events.  But November 2017 still takes the cake.  Because my baby arrived healthy and safe and perfect.  And that’s a life-changing event!  And my favorite kind of event.

But, in keeping with the tradition of these round-ups, let me review my to-do list to see how much I actually got done from it:

  1. Develop a fixed blogging schedule.  hahhahahahhaha.  This month doesn’t count for having one. Next month.
  2. Knit a Christmas stocking for my baby. I’m at least halfway there!
  3. Write a bit in my novel.  This one kinda makes me sad. I wish I had gotten some done.  Even just a bit!!
  4. Nest. I full-throttled nested!  And still am.
  5. Get back into pilates. It’s still modified as I have to heal my diastasis recti, but it’s going great.
  6. Take a ton of photos. I’m not even done.  But yes I took lots of photos.
  7. Celebrate Thanksgiving. Baby’s First Thanksgiving!
  8. Black Friday. With “black friday deals week” I didn’t actually have to shop on ACTUAL black friday.

Quite a few of those were softball assignments, but I did that on purpose.  I like having a breathable to-do list when I have something big and life-changing and emotionally impactful coming up– in my case, having a baby.  And just as a warning for next post, I’m pretty sure my December to-do list will be even MORE softball.  But I don’t mind ending my year quietly–it only makes for an even bigger January!

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you’ll come back soon.  Not just for my December to-do list, but for a few posts I have in the works– specifically a gift-giving guide for your soldier, as well as my November ipsy unboxing, to name a few.  Thanks as always for your support; I really enjoy writing for you, and I really hope you enjoy reading!

Bye-bye, November 2017!!  You were good to me.  In fact, you were my favorite month this year.

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November 2017

November 2017

“November always seemed to me the Norway of the year.” – Emily Dickinson

It’s officially November 2017 (and a day!)  And I’m just so thrilled.  I feel like November is the kickstart of winter (maybe because I live in the south, so fall isn’t super cold around here?)  I don’t know, it just feels so wintery once November hits.  The clocks change, the weather dips, I shop a ton, and of course holidays galore start happening.  <–dying of excitement.  But before I get carried away with what I want to do, let me put it in list form!

  1. Develop a fixed blogging schedule.  I like schedules and think this could be beneficial around here.
  2. Knit a Christmas stocking for my baby.  I have made one for each member of our family, and it’s her turn!
  3. Write a bit in my novel.  I know this November is going to be busy, but I don’t want to leave my book behind.
  4. Nest.  Because what other activity is there really to do with a newborn??
  5. Get back into pilates.  It’s okay that pregnancy made me take a break, but postpartum pilates will be great.
  6. Take a ton of photos.  Mostly photoshoots of our daughters, but also some family holiday pictures!
  7. Celebrate Thanksgiving.  I just love the holidays and Thanksgiving gives me warm and happy feelings.
  8. Black Friday.  ‘Nuff said.

I’m keeping this list a bit smaller, like I said in my last post.  I know that life with a baby will take our days into a nice, slow routine and I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself to get things done.  I mean, I like to have expectations for myself.  But I also like to be realistic.  ha!  I know myself and I know that the winter is all about slowing down and enjoying little things like baking and online shopping.  And every day with a newborn is slow and full of those “moments” you want to remember forever.  I’m just feeling really grateful for how lovely this fall has been, and I feel so sure that this winter is going to be even more special.  I’m a true homebody at heart and every day with my family is something I treasure forever.

Thanks so much for stopping by.  I would love to know your November 2017 plans.  Leave a comment below about them, and I hope you’ll come back soon!

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Round-up: November 2016

november goes

“November comes / And November goes, / With the last red berries / And the first white snows.”  

— Elizabeth Coatsworth

This was a long month.  Sometimes it’s nice for fall to end slowly though–sometimes better than being hit in the face with a rush of holidays that are over before you can even catch a breath!  But if I’m going to be hit in the face…the holidays are the best way to take it.  haha  I didn’t get done nearly as much as I thought I would, which is surprising since this month seemed to take forever.

  1. Visit the local library with my baby.  We just did a lot of reading from our home library!
  2. Make my house ready for holiday guests.  Feels so good to be finished with those last touches!
  3. Learn how to make pot pie.  No. But I did experiment with sweet potato gnocchi and “drunken pumpkin” sauce.
  4. Rework some of my Google Ads.  Never got around to it!
  5. Finish the first half of my knitting project. Now I’m working on the front of my baby sweater.
  6. Celebrate Thanksgiving!  And I had a lot to be thankful for!
  7. Start reading a new book.  All that home library reading was children’s books. 🙂
  8. Make an autumn wreath for our front door.  This was so much fun to do.  I’ll have to make a winter one!
  9. Begin Christmas shopping–EARLY.  Yep, it has started.
  10. Get half-way through my baby diary.  ha. ha. ha.
  11. Finish proofreading and send the last few chapters to my junior editor.  HA. HA. HA.
  12. Enroll in a class online. I enrolled in a mini-course on blogging.
  13. Finish watching One Tree Hill.  It’s over!
  14. Begin using Amazon Associates.  I did, but I have to make a new application soon.

This month taught me that when life gives you pumpkins, make pumpkin pie.  Unpacking that a bit– there were some unexpected things that I was hit with this month.  Maybe some of them were downright lemons, but most were just unique, odd, unexpected pumpkins.  While I wasn’t able to necessarily make pumpkin pie out of all of them, there was definitely a good spin that I could put on any of them.  Some things fell my way that wouldn’t have if I hadn’t been faced with those surprises.  And my phone is filled to the brim with hundreds of photos–proof that there were some pretty good times had this month, as always.  And there were definitely some pumpkin spice lattes had this month! (Again, as always!)  All in all, November remains a good month for many reasons year in and year out, and this month was no exception.

What was your November like?  Making lists is a thing around here…I’d love to read yours.  Leave a comment below and tune in soon for my December to-do list.  Thanks for stopping by!

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Thanksgiving 2016


Happy Thanksgiving!  In the words of John Greenleaf Whittier, may “thy life be as sweet, and its last sunset sky / Golden-tinted and fair as thy own Pumpkin pie!”  Side note: mine is cooling right now.

Even though I am don’t enjoy 99% of traditional Thanksgiving fare, I’m 100% a celebrator of this holiday!  There should be a Thanksgiving every month, or even every week, because there is just SO so SO so much to be thankful for.  I would just like to name four things that right now I am incredibly thankful for:

  1. Faith- I am Catholic and having a faith to hold on to is my rock throughout this unpredictable Army life
  2. Family – my perfect husband is my best friend, and our darling baby is the apple of our eyes
  3. Health- there have only been a few times in my life where I have been generally “unwell” and I hated it!
  4. Memories- as a very sentimental person, it means so much to have years of memories that make me smile

I know Thanksgiving is not simply about being thankful.  It’s historic roots call to mind a sense of patriotism and honor among us.  The holiday also stands as a reminder to give, share, and nurture– both our own family, as well as the families in our world.  I don’t want to get preachy or cliche about it, so I will stop there.  But I would love to hear from you in the comments!  What does Thanksgiving mean to you, and how do you celebrate it?

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Glam Bag Unboxing: November 2016

If you are an Ipsy subscriber, then you’ll know the theme for the November glam bag is Rock Starlet.  I didn’t even know that was a thing until I got mine in the mail!  But apparently it is a thing, and it’s not to be confused with the other “rock” themed Ipsy bags.  The other rock bags had a bit of a punk vibe, and this definitely does not.  The addition of the term “starlet” makes all the difference!  The theme focuses on spotlight moments and performance-ready glam.  Everyone’s glam bag turns out a little differently, but I felt like mine reflected the November glam bag theme pretty well.


ModelCo Instant Brow Pen – Medium/Dark

I haven’t really covered brows a lot on my blog here…and that’s mostly because they are not my hobby horse of the makeup world.  That might be crazy to those whose entire world revolves around their eyebrows.  I wish I knew how to do them the way you do.  But I’ve always like my natural eyebrows, and haven’t found a product that I think is significantly better than my natural brows.  I’m interested in trying this one because it’s a pen, and so it won’t make my eyebrows gummy or slick.  <–Neither of those are looks I’m going for.


theBalm Cosmetics Mad Lash Mascara

Maybe brows aren’t my thing, but eyes totally are.  Especially lashes.  Even though I am in a completely committed friendship of utility with my L’Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black mascara, I’m always open to trying a new mascara.  And laughing at how poorly it compares to L’Oreal.  Just kidding!  Kind of.


Benefit Cosmetics the POREfessional face primer

I’m currently using the Maybelline Master Prime face primer, but I would love to compare it to this one.  Truth be known, I’ve been dying to try this product for quite some time now.  It was one of the first “high end” products that I wanted to get after watching it used in a million youtube makeup tutorials, but I could never swallow the price tag.  I like spending that kind of money on skincare.  But there is always the argument that it doesn’t matter how good your skincare is, if you continue to put less-than-desirable products on it (NOT that Maybelline is less-than-desirable).  Basically, I probably shouldn’t belittle the importance of a good primer.


pur-lisse Blue Lotus Balancing Moisturizer

Speaking of skincare, receiving this product made my day!  I have been running low on the Clinique moisturizers I have been using, and so this came at the perfect time!  This product is a fusion of Asian hydration and French luxury.  It is a lightweight moisturizer composed of marine plants, white tea, and vitamin E.  Yes, please!


SLMissGlam  – W20 Angled Eye Brush

This might be my very favorite item in the entire November glam bag!  It is.  I have received quite a few makeup brushes during my time as an Ipsy subscriber, but this is by far the nicest brush I have been sent.  It is so feminine and delicate, just like all of the SLMissGlam products.  The fibers are vegan and the handle is basically the cutest I have ever seen on a brush.  This is such a treat!

That’s a wrap for my unboxing!  If you’re an Ipsy subscriber, what did you get in your November glam bag?  If you’re not an Ipsy subscriber, and would like to become one, just follow this link.  Doing so will not compensate me in any way, but will give my Ipsy account some bonus points that I can use on fun products!  Thanks for stopping by and reading!

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My 100th Post!


“At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet.” – Plato

I simply cannot believe I’m writing my 100th post.  But I am!

To take a trip down memory lane, I started this blog in the winter of 2015, after an attempt in the beginning of 2015.  I had high hopes that this blog would provide me with a writing platform (of course!) and an ability to use my voice.  That’s exactly what it gave me…but oh so, so, so much more.

It challenged me to conquer things I otherwise would never attempt– Google AdSense, I’m looking at you!  Through it, I was forced to stretch my imagination and mindset (read: post when I had no idea what to say).  It encouraged me to practice patience and attention-to-detail.  I began taking photography more seriously, though my abilities hardly improved. 😀  My writing voice developed in a way I didn’t originally plan.  To create content, I had to combine creativity, research, and practical application to my work.  It’s all been part of the process, and a process that I truly like.

It’s funny how goals shift; as consequences reshape those goals into something new and better.  For me, there is one shining thing that has motivated my blog from the beginning.  So far, there has been one thing that has carried my blog through almost one full year.  I have high hopes it will remain the one thing that propels my blog into future glory.  That thing is love.

I started blogging out of love of writing.  My posts are all about things I love.  I look forward to creating and developing a blog I love.  Love has been central to my blog–whether the content or the process–and even in the concept itself.  I named my blog after  the heart, because it’s the center of love.  And I want this blog to center on things I love, on people I love, on love itself.

Hopefully you will be able to see that what I’m posting about is something I love.  And hopefully you can tell that I loved writing those posts.  I don’t always plan to write about serious things, as I’ll still be doing Ipsy glam bag unboxings and the like!  But that’s because I love the little things in life.  However, in my intention to focus on love, I want to create more content that centers on what I love most: my Army family.  In many ways, I think that will harmonize with focusing on the little things in life–after all, being a family is about experiencing life and it’s little treasures together.

So for my 100th blog post, I simply want to re-center my blog, my focus, and my passion on love.  In the end, it will be what propels my blog, as it does every other aspect of my life!  I can only have success here if I love as I go along.  And that’s what I plan to do.  I hope that in the next 100 blog posts to come, my blog is focused on, centered around, and built with love.  I would love that.  <3


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November 2016


“But there is always a November space after the leaves have fallen when she felt it was almost indecent to intrude on the woods.” — L.M. Montgomery

I can’t believe it’s already November 2016…but that’s a good thing.  I feel like it was February last month!   It’s closer to being next February than this past February!  I don’t mind that the months are rushing by, because it means I’m enjoying them, and it also means we’re that much closer to Christmas.  Best day ever.  Before this turns into a Christmas post, let me pull in my own reins and focus on November 2016.  As usual, I drew up a list of hopefuls that I have (almost) every intention of completing.  This list may look familiar, as a third of it is last month’s to-do list (the things I didn’t do on it):

  1. Visit the local library with my baby.  She is already well on her way to becoming a bookworm!
  2. Make my house ready for holiday guests.  Just a few more touches of decoration and organization.
  3. Learn how to make pot pie.  I’ll probably start vegetarian so I can perfect it, and then add meats.
  4. Rework some of my Google Ads.  They are pretty much in place, but I could make some adjustments!
  5. Finish the first half of my knitting project.  I’m working on the back of a baby sweater.
  6. Celebrate Thanksgiving!  Any holiday is a good excuse to make memories.
  7. Start reading a new book.  Either a romance novel or a classic fiction.
  8. Make an autumn wreath for our front door.  I’m thinking fake leaves. haha
  9. Begin Christmas shopping–EARLY.  Last year, shipping time and costs were my enemies.
  10. Get half-way through my baby diary.  Even just writing her birth story would be a big step.
  11. Finish proofreading and send the last few chapters to my junior editor.  Time to start!
  12. Enroll in a class online.  Probably the Aromatherapy class I started a while ago, or a new one.
  13. Finish watching One Tree Hill.  I’ll definitely do this one– now I’m on the last season!
  14. Begin using Amazon Associates.  Just need to do this already!

There are a few more things I want to do, that don’t really need to make it on the list, because they are abstracts for daily life.  Ever since my car accident, driving has been a very scary reality for me–but I should clear my head when I drive, and continue to improve in my confidence and trust.  I also want to think more creatively–whether that’s in my music or in my writing–I want to experience passion again when I play and write.  I need to reminisce more on happy memories, letting my mind wander into nostalgia and relaxing in its comfort.  As it gets colder, and we cozy down more, I want to model my apartment after those den-like feelings: fires in the hearth, cozy music, folded blankets on the couch arms, and a lot of flameless candles.

As the month stretches out, more things mentally make it onto my list.  I’m looking forward to finding out what those are!  What made it on your list for November 2016?  Leave a comment below.  As always, thanks for stopping by!

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