Friday, June 15, 2018

2018 Amazon Favorites | 1st Half

I've had an Amazon account since 2007 when I received my first gift card to Amazon. I bought a few things here or there but it wasn't until I got hooked up to Prime that I bought every day items.

I also made this into a video, you can check that out here and make sure to subscribe if you aren't already!!

Instead of doing a post on what I ordered recently, there's a linkup for that at the beginning of the month with Tanya at The Other Side of the Road that I'm planning on linking up with on July 3rd, I thought I'd share the items I've picked up over the last six months and am absolutely loving, using pretty much all the time. The links are to my preferred smile charity organization - The Antioch Partners.

Vented Wet brush - Ya'll I have had vented brushes before because when my stylist uses something on my hair I like to see if I can replicate and buy all the same products. I already had a wet brush, but not a vented one. I'm not sure how I found out that Wet Brush had one but I decided to order it and I love it for blow drying.

Wool dryer balls - We have had dryer balls for a few years now and after our first set fell apart we checked Amazon to see what they had, how the reviews were and what the price difference was. We've only been using these for six months, but you get twice as many for a third of the price. FYI dryer balls replace your dryer sheets.

Acrylic Monitor Riser - I have had this on a couple of my wish lists for at least a year and finally bit the bullet. I'm glad I didn't get it the first few times because I changed my mind from black to acrylic and I've been so happy with it. I love having a place to put my laptop on my desk and my keyboard goes under the large monitor or vice versa.

Lazy Makeup Toiletry Bag - I remember seeing this ad on Instagram and whenever I would click on it, the price just seemed too high when I have makeup bags I got for free, thanks gift with purchase! The reviews also weren't good because at the time they were coming from another country and taking WEEKS without people actually reading that when they purchased. I bought mine, knowing it would take about a month to get here and now you can get it Prime, of course. The only thing I would change is a handle, like a train case. Otherwise, love it!

Scarleton Stylish Reversible Tote Bag - Compare to Nordstrom - I have talked about this before on my January 2018 favorites and I still use it all the time. A coworker got the brown/pink combo and she uses hers everyday too.

The Greatest Showman Soundtrack - Another product that was in a favorites post. If you still buy CDs which I know most people don't, check out Amazon before buying somewhere else. A lot of times the price is cheaper and you not only get a cd, you get the digital copy immediately after purchasing in the Amazon music app. I've ordered CDs as gifts for people and I get a copy of their music. Winning all around.

Selfie Ring Light - I Mentioned in my May Favorites Youtube video and on Instsagram Stories but forgot to talk about it here. I tried a couple of these and this one was the cheaper of the two AND worked better. It's not the best light, but for around $8 it works for what I need. I use it if it's really dark to light up my face (no natural lighting, don't expect that) and to get better lighting on products or things when I'm talking about them on Instagram!

Disposable Plastic Cups with flat lids - I love these. They're totally unnecessary but I don't like how the coffee gets in the reusable tumblers with lids and straws.

What have you been loving that you bought off Amazon?!

Linking up with Amanda for Friday favorites!!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

All About the Books June 2018

Life According to Steph

With two bible studies, more blogging and YouTube I didn't finish nearly the amount of books as I expected, but I was also more selective about said books, so yay!

FIVE Stars

This is One Moment by Mila Gray aka Stay With Me - I liked this one better than the first book. The story probably had a similar flow but the romance in this one captured me and I loved the supporting characters stories as well!!

Synopsis: Didi Monroe’s waited her whole life for the type of romance you see in the movies, so when Hollywood heartthrob Zac Ridgemont sweeps her off her feet, Didi believes she might finally have met the one.

While Zac’s away filming for the summer, Didi begins her internship at a military hospital in California. There, she meets wounded Marine Noel Walker.

Frustrated on the outside and broken on the inside, Walker’s a pain-in-the-ass patient who refuses all help.

Yet Didi can’t help but be drawn to him, and though he’s strictly out of bounds it soon becomes impossible to ignore the sparks flying between them.

As the attraction simmers into dangerous territory, Didi finds herself falling hard for a man she knows is going to break her heart. Because Walker doesn’t believe in love or happy ever afters. So what possible future can there be?

Then tragedy hits, shattering both their worlds, and Didi is forced to choose between fighting for love or merely falling for the illusion of it.

I'll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara was so good, ever since BTK aka Dennis Rader came back into the public eye in Wichita (where I spent half my life) while I was there, I've had an unhealthy obsession with serial killers. Getting to read all of the information McNamara captured on the Golden State Killer and seeing the story solved around publishing time was awesome. I felt like this book kept my attention much like a fictional story.

Synopsis: For more than ten years, a mysterious and violent predator committed fifty sexual assaults in Northern California before moving south, where he perpetrated ten sadistic murders. Then he disappeared, eluding capture by multiple police forces and some of the best detectives in the area.

Three decades later, Michelle McNamara, a true crime journalist who created the popular website, was determined to find the violent psychopath she called "the Golden State Killer." Michelle pored over police reports, interviewed victims, and embedded herself in the online communities that were as obsessed with the case as she was.

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark—the masterpiece McNamara was writing at the time of her sudden death—offers an atmospheric snapshot of a moment in American history and a chilling account of a criminal mastermind and the wreckage he left behind. It is also a portrait of a woman’s obsession and her unflagging pursuit of the truth. Utterly original and compelling, it has been hailed as a modern true crime classic—one which fulfilled Michelle's dream: helping unmask the Golden State Killer.

Four Stars

Arrogant Devil by R. S. Grey dragged for me. I thought once the story picked up it had a good story and romance. If you have read other R. S. Grey stories, let me know your favorite. I'd like to try another one by this author.

Synopsis: Everyone in Cedar Creek, Texas, knows Jack McNight is an arrogant devil. Physically, I get it: he’s tan and fit, with coal-black hair that’s clearly been scorched by hellfire. Oh, and his personality? It burns just as hot.

When I show up on the doorstep of Blue Stone Ranch, I’m run-down and rockin’ my last pair of underwear. I’m hoping for a savior, but instead, I find him.

My opinion of Jack is marred by a dismal first impression, but his opinion of me is tainted even before I arrive. He’s heard I’m a spoiled princess there to take advantage of his goodwill. To him, I’m more trouble than I’m worth.

Our button-pushing banter should get under my skin. His arrogance should be a major turn-off. Problem is, devils are known to offer their own form of temptation.

Every one of his steely glares sends a shiver down my spine.

Every steamy encounter leaves me reeling.

Sure, it could be the Texas heat messing with my head, but there’s no way I’ll survive the summer without silencing him with a kiss and wrestling him out of those Wranglers.

Who knows…going to bed with the devil might just be the salvation I’ve been looking for all along.

Killman Creek by Rachel Caine was a follow up to Stillhouse Lake and I flew through it but there's yet another story and this one wasn't as good as the first to me. I would have been just as happy to have only one book. Now I have to wait another year to read the next one.

Synopsis: Gwen Proctor won the battle to save her kids from her ex-husband, serial killer Melvin Royal, and his league of psychotic accomplices. But the war isn’t over. Not since Melvin broke out of prison. Not since she received a chilling text…

You’re not safe anywhere now.

Her refuge at Stillhouse Lake has become a trap. Gwen leaves her children in the protective custody of a fortified, well-armed neighbor. Now, with the help of Sam Cade, brother of one of Melvin’s victims, Gwen is going hunting. She’s learned how from one of the sickest killers alive.

But what she’s up against is beyond anything she feared—a sophisticated and savage mind game calculated to destroy her. As trust beyond her small circle of friends begins to vanish, Gwen has only fury and vengeance to believe in as she closes in on her prey. And sure as the night, one of them will die.

Currently reading:
In Bloom by Kayla Aimee and over half way through!! Captivating by Jon and Stasi Eldredge, Just Open the Door by Jen Schmidt and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J. K. Rowling.

What are you reading and loving?!