Friday, February 28, 2014

Yay, It's Friday + Blogmopolitan Quiz

Good Morning my fabulous friends!

It's Friday and despite the fact I need a louder horn because someone tried to run me off the road I'm thinking it's going to be an excellent day!

It's the first day of the Tampa Bay Scrapbook Shop Hop and we're headed to St. Pete tonight to kick it off. Don't know what the shop hop (formerly Treasure Hunt) is? Don't worry I'll share more about it in a separate post soon!

I also thought I'd share my quiz answers with you that Erin posted about yesterday. Did you fill one out yet?



I hope this weekend finds you happy as a clam and I'll see you tomorrow for my February Real Books recap!


Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Glam Series - Nails

Love Always Nancy J

I'm neither an OPI nor an Essie pusher. If I were either it would be Gah! Probably OPI, but more recently I've purchased either brand whichever has the color I'm looking for.

I am a Color Club nail polish pusher. It's quite unfortunate you can't readily buy this at Ulta and I have to shop online OR I've managed to find it at TJ Maxx / Beall's Outlet sometimes. Random places, you know.

I ordered my first ever color from them from Birchbox without even trying it because I was so excited about getting my first Birchbox I just couldn't wait to sample something.


These are my favs. Seche Vite for top coat hands DOWN! I haven't tried anything remotely close to this and it's what my salon uses.

I love nice looking, soft cuticles and I used to have a coconut'y smelling one that was awesome but they stopped making it so I had to try something new. This Essie Apricot scent has done the job quite nicely.

I'm a name brand polish shopper, always. Unless I absolutely can't find what I'm looking for in those three brands and then I'll continue to the other brands. Most of those other brands I own were gifts and I've tried some of them. As far as wear for anything other than Color Club? I've found Revlon comes in with high rankings on my nails. I will tell you I am super easy on my nails. I baby these hands like NONE OTHER and it shows when a regular manicure can last me two weeks with only wear on the edges and no chips.

I'm careful, but I've just always been the girl to instantly remove my polish at the slightest blemish. Except today where I'm rocking a haphazard polish removal job since I'm going to the salon tonight.

One of my fav products for removing said polish is something else I've received from Birchbox and repurchased.



Polish Colors - I used to be only pink, red or neutral but this year I've tried branching out with a little more color!

Do you have a fav brand of nail polish? Do you venture to other polish colors or stick with the basics of pink and red?

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Shakeology Thoughts

Happy Hump Day friends!

I know I said I would be back sooner with my review of Shakeology, but I had not tried all of the flavors until Monday morning this week, so you're getting it now.


I was so filled with mixed emotions about this product. I have read all the health benefits this is good for, and I was hoping it would not only help with my weight, but possibly my adult acne. Keep in mind I'm picky, picky! Others don't have a problem with it and I'm highly opinionated.

The package came with a few recipes for each flavor they sent and I saw two recipes I immediately knew would be the ones for me to try.

I started with the chocolate because I'm a chocolate lover, duh!

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Sounds delicious, right? I used fresh strawberries, some ice and then dropped in the package of chocolate Shakeology that smelled great! Got it all blended up and then after the first sip noticed two things. The aftertaste, and the thickness!

I've only ever done Slimfast shakes before, so I'm not much of a shake guru but I love milkshakes, lol!

I think I drank maybe half of it before I started gagging and that equals not for me so I saved it for my parents to try.

Next up was the vanilla. I saw the coffee recipe and though PERFECT I can have this every morning on my way into work and the $4 a day will replace my weekly Starbucks drink!

Vanilla Latte

Cold coffee, almond milk, raw honey, vanilla mix and ice sounded good in theory. This one ended up being even thicker than the first one since it had the almond milk I think. I only made it half way again and then took the rest of it the next day for breakfast and added twice as much milk as I had left of the shake. This was thanks to a tip from @AdamCUnderhill on Twitter after he saw me share the unveiling image.

The watered down version was soo much easier to drink and I chugged it like a champ and remembered that for my third trial...the Greenberry which I had no desire to try and hence why it took me so freaking long!

Greenberry Smoothie

I just took my regular smoothie recipe of a few strawberries, blueberries, Greek yogurt, almond milk and ice with the Greenberry powder that didn't even smell good.

I put it in twice as much water and was able to drink 3/4 of it!!! That was a HUGE feat for me since it still didn't taste awesome but I was able to almost finish it in one meal.

All in all, I'm glad I spent the $20 to try out the three flavors instead of dropping $130 on something I wouldn't like! My dad thought each of them tasted okay enough to drink and not with a bunch of water like I did. Also, please remember I am extremely picky about taste so others have not had the same experiences I have.

I have one sample packet of the chocolate flavor I'd like to give to one of my readers! It's only open today and tomorrow, so get entered now! Also, only open in US and Canada. :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Linking up with Liz!

***I purchased this Shakeology trial pack with my own money and am sharing my thoughts in hopes of helping others that are considering joining this great program!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Beauty from Pain Series + More Five Star Books

This series started with a $.99 book one-click on Amazon and I'm so thankful I did. Truthfully I think it would have been worth the $3.99 price but I'm glad I didn't have to pay that for each book, lol. #cheapskate

Anyway, Beauty from Pain was another FIVE star book for me. Those aren't the norm though I do tend to rate books pretty high.

After the Beauty Series, you'll find some FIVE star books I haven't mentioned yet.


Beauty from Pain by Georgia Cates was sooo good that it was hard for the other two in the series to live up to the first. (Five Stars!)

Synopses: They agreed on three months...but their love knew no boundaries.

Jack McLachlan is a winemaking magnate and easily one of Australia’s most eligible bachelors. His success and wealth makes him no stranger to the complications of romantic relationships and that’s why he goes to extreme measures to avoid the hassle. He prefers simplicity in the form of a beautiful female companion with no strings attached. He arranges relationships like business deals and they’re always the same. No long term relationships. No real names.

It’s his game and his rules. He’s content to play as usual, but when Laurelyn Prescott enters his life, his strategy must change because this player is like none he's ever encountered. His world is turned on its head after he begins a three month affair with the beautiful American musician. Nothing goes according to plan and as he breaks more and more of his own rules for her, she’s exceptionally close to becoming something he never thought possible. His ultimate game changer.

Beauty From Pain Series are adult contemporary novels and are not intended for younger readers due to mature content.

Beauty from Surrender by Georgia Cates was the second in the series and I flew through it just like I did the first. I read several reviews where people didn't feel like the characters were carried over from the first book in quite the same way, but I beg to differ. The emotions from these two were the same as I would expect from any in similar situations.

Synopses: How do you move on when he’s every song you sing?

After Laurelyn Prescott walks away from the love of her life, she returns to Nashville to pursue the only dream she has left. Determined to find a distraction from the pain of losing Jack Henry, she immerses herself in her music. But with her old life comes old acquaintances and new expectations. When Laurelyn refuses her record producer’s outrageous demands, she finds herself without a career—until an unforeseen opportunity presents itself. From there it’s a rocket ride straight to the top where Laurelyn finds the success she’s always dreamed of. Will it be enough to bring her the happiness she so deserves, or will the absence of Jack Henry leave her wanting more?

Jack Henry McLachlan never expected to fall in love with Laurelyn Prescott—but he did. After he foolishly let her slip through his fingers, he spends three months searching for her, but their reunion doesn’t come easy. The woman he finds isn’t the same one who drifted away without a goodbye. No longer an insecure girl on an Australian adventure, this Laurelyn is a successful musician with a promising career. Her dreams are becoming a reality, and Jack is terrified his American girl won’t have a place for him in her new life. With only a month to convince her otherwise, will it be enough time to make her visualize a life beyond the glitz and glamour, a life that includes him?

Beauty from Love by Georgia Cates was just as good as the first two, but I just don't know that it was needed. Sure, it was nice to hear more of their story and it made me all giddy but I couldn't give it 5 stars. However, it deserves an honorable mention since the other two were so hard to live up to.

Synopses: Jack McLachlan is fulfilled by more than he dared to dream possible. He finds everything he never knew he wanted—or needed—in Laurelyn Prescott, his last and final companion. Life is beautiful with his beloved by his side but their post-wedded bliss is cut short when his dark past springs into their present happiness. He wants to shelter Laurelyn but keeping her untainted by his previous life proves impossible when yesterday’s sins insist on returning to haunt him. Will it be possible for them to find happiness in their forever with a past like his?

I've also not been reading much else. #readerfail But, I wanted to share more five star books I've not mentioned like so. I'll continue to do this until I've exhausted my Five star books :)


Hard as it Gets by Laura Kaye wasn't one that only I loved, my friend S loved it just as much! It's all about tattoos, helping the damsel and hot boys! I'm so excited for the other books that are due out in this series. Hard as You Can comes out today!

Synopses:
Tall, dark, and lethal...

Trouble just walked into Nicholas Rixey's tattoo parlor. Becca Merritt is warm, sexy, wholesome--pure temptation to a very jaded Nick. He's left his military life behind to become co-owner of Hard Ink Tattoo, but Becca is his ex-commander's daughter. Loyalty won't let him turn her away. Lust has plenty to do with it too.

With her brother presumed kidnapped, Becca needs Nick. She just wasn't expecting to want him so much. As their investigation turns into all-out war with an organized crime ring, only Nick can protect her. And only Becca can heal the scars no one else sees.

Desire is the easy part. Love is as hard as it gets. Good thing Nick is always up for a challenge...

Just for Now by Abbi Glines I *heart* Abbi, for serious! I don't care if a lot of her books are similar, or the same storyline with different characters I just love them! I even have a Rush Crush t-shirt! This one had a hero, and it had the love of/for his siblings that really tugged on my heart!

Synopses: An insatiable attraction heats to the boiling point in this steamy book set in the shore town of Sea Breeze from the author of the white-hot The Vincent Boys.

Preston is one bad boy. And Amanda has harbored a crush on him for forever. When she finally makes her move on him, it does not end well. But still, she can’t resist him. Especially now that he seems to be pursuing her, too.

No one wants wants them to be together. Not Amanda’s brother Marcus, who is on the verge of his marriage to Low, and definitely not any of Preston’s buddies. They know way too much about Preston’s dark side. Even Preston realizes he’s not good enough for someone like her.

But Amanda believes there is more to Preston than his bad boy persona, and she is determined to unearth what he’s hiding behind his seductive blue eyes—secrets that could explain his actions. Secrets Amanda might not be able to forgive.

Yet the dangerous attraction persists...and neither Preston nor Amanda is going to deny it.

Now that Book Bash 2014 is underway and we're finding out the authors I get super excited when I find out one of my Five Star book authors will be there and ALL of these authors will be there! What's the last FIVE star book you read?

Monday, February 24, 2014

Freakin' Weekend with Margaritas!

You know when you accidentally prematurely submit a post?! Yeah, that was me just now. I have a FAB book post ready to go for tomorrow, but I accidentally posted it for like .35 seconds on Sunday! Oops!

Anyway, how was your weekend? Did you partake in any of the margarita festivities like I am did? It's true I'm a little buzzed and constantly having to spell check to make sure you can read what I'm writing, so forgive me for typos!


1. Saturday was national Margarita day and it was Fab! If you've seen my weekend posts, you may notice a margarita trend. THey're the BEST! Anyway, I didn't want to use a premade mix, so I found this recipe online and it is STRONG!

2. Friday night our plans got derailed since it rained. *pouts* So, we did the next best thing and that's eating at Bahama Breeze with a coupon! I tried the fish tacos for the first time and they were AWESOME! I'll definitely be ordering them again!

3. We went for almost a FIVE mile walk on Saturday morning and even though it wasn't all that fun, I did it! I was rewarded with Pollo Tropical for lunch!

4. S and I went to see That Awkward Moment with Zac Efron who is hella hot. It was an okay movie, I definitely could have waited until DVD to see it, but we had a good time. Did I mention we were the only ones in the theater?

How was your weekend?

Dateless in Dallas

Every other Monday when I'm off I'd really like to get into some Weekend Recap link ups, so this week I'm joining Dateless in Dallas and Showered With Design. What are some Monday link ups you participate in?

Saturday, February 22, 2014

I'm the Kind of Girl Who...

Surprise!

A Saturday post, say what?!

After I saw this link up I knew I'd be late to the party but wanted to participate all the same!



...can listen to a song on repeat until it gets old and then it REALLY gets old. Like seriously radio, I know I brought it on myself for playing it non stop the last 17 days but can you please stop playing that Carrie Underwood song?

...cries at everything. I mean, commercials, songs, movies, books, customers not happy about their order, the list goes on and on. I've made a commitment to stop crying at work and so far this year I think I've cried ONCE! *high fives all around*

...would love to read books for a living. Seriously. I've planned this out with J and we're all for it we're just not sure we're cut out to be book reviewers or publishers. I mean, who wants to read stuff because you "have" to?

...can't leave the house without foundation on unless I put a hat on. I think when I'm wearing said hat my face must not look too bad, lol. It's a sickness really. I wish I was blessed with good skin it just didn't happen for me in this life.

...used to hate all things gold. Everything was silver, but then a few things changed. UCF (Central Florida) became a huge part of my life and I was also given a gold heirloom ring from my grandmother that I wear almost everyday now. Then it BLEW up on Pinterest, on blog design, etc so I'm part of the trend, yay!

...loves getting together to have a Fabulous time with friends and even people I just met, BUT I'm also absolutely thrilled when I get to stay in and do whatever I want like spend all day reading or pretending to design my blog.

...always has to think my nails look pretty. If I get a chip, the next time I'm around polish remover I'm taking it off.

...won't get a pedicure unless it's been at least 48 hours since my last shave. I heard that somewhere and just thought it was a good rule to follow. This means that sometimes I show up with DAYS worth of growth, lol.

...could eat chips and salsa for every meal. I mean, it even goes great with eggs or an omelet.

...has loved the color pink my entire life. I strayed to green in middle school, but came back to pink with a vengeance in high school and continue spreading the pink love even now.

...loves neutral colored cars. When I'm car shopping I don't really care as long as it's gold, black, silver or white.

...has a problem with buying more books than I have time to read, but they all sound sooooo good!

...am picky about everything! It has taken me at least four years to find the right color of pink purse at the Coach store. I'm still looking.

...loves pink like it's my job. If it comes in pink I must have it! Pink toolbox, you know I have one of those.

...really doesn't enjoy exercise, but I don't know how else I'm going to get this body leaner since I love food. :(

...is allergic to avocados, but I remember how awesome guacamole tastes because I developed the allergy late in life. :(

...has a very addictive personality. Twilight. One Tree Hill. They controlled my life for a little while. Enough said.

...loves water. Like seriously, I can't get enough of it.

...used to have a wardrobe that consisted of Gap and Victoria's Secret, but I'm learning to be more open to other brands, lol.

So that's just a little insight into this life.

Hope you have a fabulous weekend! We're supposed to get more rain. Boo.

Friday, February 21, 2014

It's Friday - Happy Dance



1. God bless all of you that actually read through / commented on my post from Tuesday. I though it was ready to post, and sure it got the info across just fine but My WORD is it a mess!



Facebook buttons different directions, a floating line of text that doesn't belong. I have to admit I'm a little very embarrassed. You shouldn't post things when you're tired. I went to bed at 8:00 on Monday right after I scheduled this post. Lesson learned.

2. This weekend I found out about the first cruise I'll be taking, which also happens to have a blog conference happening. Super stoked in case you were wondering.


3. Did some more online shopping and have to admit that Amazon Prime has spoiled me! I can't tell you how depressed it made me when I went FOUR days without receiving something in the mail and only ONE shipping notification! I finally received another shipping notification Thursday afternoon while I was napping during my break. I don't know what was up except I had an ice cream and must have had a sugar high/crash episode. :(

4. I started planning my first 29th birthday - which shall be a brunch. We were going to do a girls weekend in Orlando with major Karaoke, but then I decided this sounded more like me this year. My second 29th birthday will have to be more blow out style, right!?

5. I've got a busy weekend coming up and I'm a little excited! There's a artsy garage sale with food trucks and booze in town tonight, and then a nice long walk tomorrow followed by some Pollo Tropical. I don't know why I never ate there before but the Tropi-Chop bowl is ah-mazing! I'm also baking cupcakes this weekend in preps for my One Year Blog Birthday!


Linking up with one of the blog conference speakers for backthatazzup Friday and we're going Fresh Prince baby!



Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air by Will Smith on Grooveshark
Am I the only one that can almost still recite this word for word? Probably not. What makes you excited this week?

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Let's Talk Boys - Swoon


I'm a single girl that can get a little boy crazy sometimes. I love romance books with a story which usually means they give me some HOT guys to swoon over and I've acquired a little list of my most Swoonworthy Attributes.




- Scruff -



- Light Eyes -



- Baseball Caps -



- Dark Hair + Light Eyes + Scruff -



- Tailored Pants -



- Multiples -



As you can see if you look at my board, Chris Pine probably wins. Hands down he has the ultimate swoon package for me. I'm also definitely in love with Chuck Bass from Gossip Girl, but he has few of the qualities I love listed above. He's just *sigh* sure of himself dreamy! Now that makes me want to go rewatch Gossip Girl all over again.




Want more Swoon?!





What makes you swoon? I didn't even go into the personality or talent side of swoon. Like a guy that can sing AND play the guitar? Somebody catch me.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Blogcation Cruise - I'm Almost All In

So this popped up in my feed earlier this week and I have to be honest I've never been to a blog conference and I've never been on a cruise.

Yes, it's true this Florida girl has never been on a cruise. I've only been living here for the past five years, so it's not like I spent my whole life here!

To be honest they also terrify me a little.

Not because of what happened to the Titanic.

Not because of my sea sickness...but because of others being sick and getting me sick. You know those stories of an ENTIRE ship coming down with the flu?! Not for me. Ever.


When I started looking for blog conferences to go to this year, the one I was looking forward to going to after seeing it last year, was not being held! So I kind of gave up looking for a bit and then this pops up. It just might be a sign!

My only BIG setback is I need a roomie!


// I could take my mom, I haven't asked her yet but I honestly don't know how my dad would do without her for a whole week! Then she does have that job she'd have to take a couple days off for.
// I could take my bestie, but we work together so they may not let us both off at the same time for a WHOLE week. :(
// I did post on Facebook but no takers yet. Cruising in Florida is old news, and unlike me most have already been on one, especially recently.

So with that in mind, I'm getting myself added to the "roomie needed" list Erin is putting together. She's fab and didn't you know she was one of my fav bloggers? Some other favs will be there, like Living in Yellow and Yoga Pants PLUS some others I'm just now learning about and subsequently following, lol.


I'm just super stoked and ready to put down my $250 deposit! I'll have the rest by October with no problem since I've upped my savings transfer.

That leaves me with the question...Do YOU want to be my roomie?! Maybe you know someone I don't that needs a roommate?!

I always bring goodies and I think vacations are a time for presents! Plus we'd get to know each other really well, right?! Check out my About Me Page for more info...about me, duh!

Have you ever attended a blog conference or been on a cruise?

It's Humpday that means I'm linking up with Liz over at Fitness Blondie and it never fails SOMEONE at work will ask me what day it is.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A Book Bash'ish Closer to You?!

Hello fellow book enthusiasts!

After I talked about Book Bash on here and how awesome it is which is why I love it so much, I saw a lot of comments saying readers wished there was something like that in their area. None of these have happened yet, but like Book Bash many could be sold out so keep that in mind when looking to attend.

I tried to focus on sections of the United States rather than EVERY state and each author signing has authors that will be at Book Bash! Remember, the only event I've ever attended myself is Book Bash, so below is just a listing of things I found about each event. I included the Facebook links to each one since Book Bash gets a lot of their info out that way.

Book Ball

Pacific Coast - Anaheim, CA
February 28, 2014 - March 1, 2014



Love N Vegas

Mountain - Las Vegas, NV
October 25, 2014


Penned Con

Heartland - St. Louis
September 12, 2014



Facebook Link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/AustinBookFest/

Austin Book Fest

Southwest - Austin
March 22, 2014



Book Bash

Southeast - Orlando
June 28, 2014



Chicago Author Event

Midwest - Chicago
May 3, 2014



Book Expo America

Northeast - NYC
May 31, 2014



Have you ever attended a large scale author signing? Or even a single author signing?
For a more complete list I found AFTER I scoured the net and made mine *pft*, visit Read, Love, Lust. Their list trumps mine, for sure! Mine's prettier right?!