Wednesday, April 15, 2015

My New Skin Regime

I am not one who really likes to take pictures of my self "up close". But after the last few days and some big prompting I am going to have to pass along this new product that I found. I kept seeing all these friends of mine on Facebook talking about this product from Nerium. I finally messaged one of them and ask them what in the world this stuff was. My first thought when she told me how much it was- "That is a bloody lot of money." But I decided to give it a try anyway and even signed up for preferred customer status because it was cheaper. I ordered the combo pack which includes a Day Cream, a Night Cream, and Nerium Firm. I am going to be honest and say that while I love the Day and Night Creams, I am not all that impressed with the Firm. 

This really aren't the best pictures below AND I have on no make up in any of them. I can't really tell a huge difference in the pictures but I can and apparently others can in person. My skin is smoother, my problem areas that like to break out are not as bad, and my combination skin is finally all the same. John keeps telling me that my skin is smoother and softer too. 

This week I am in Atlanta for GHCA training and have been asked multiple times how old I am. The response when I say 33 is that of shock. Not that pretend kind either. One girl told me she didn't believe me because I didn't look a day over 21. (And when I told them I had a 14 year old, no one believed me on that either.) It has been such a great feeling. So here are the pictures:

I took the first pictures at home and the second pictures last night in my hotel room. 

Nerium has a great preferred customer program too. If 3 people order the product through your customer link- you get that month's shipment for FREE. (So 3 people sign up!) And if you try it for 30 days and don't like- you really do get your money back. Now here is the kicker- it's expensive. I paid $172 for my first shipment. But that was all three products and I am dropping the Firm this month so it won't cost me as much. But you don't have to order all three. You can order just one. And if you are looking at doing that I would say order the night cream. So if you want to find out more and about the pricing, ingredients, etc head over to my customer page here:

**I am not a representative of this company, just a customer. If you do sign up through my page, I earn credits for discounts off my monthly order up to free. I truly do love this product and what it is doing for me. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

"Nobody's Cuter Than You"

So this post was supposed to happen last week. Instead I was really sick and barely made it through work everyday. So it is happening today. :)

I am sitting in a hotel room right now. As in I am away from home for work for an entire week. Y'all last night I went to Lognhorn and ate BY MYSELF! It was wonderful. (Of course I ate the left overs tonight and I am staying in.) The upside to this trip is how close I am to my best friend since high school. We are planning on getting together while I am here and I will be in heaven with her new baby boy. She is my Gulley.

What is a Gulley you might ask. A Gulley is a friend who has your back, is the one you call when the big things happen, and the one who your favorite memories are linked to.

Melanie Shankle's newest book (and my favorite of the three), is called "Nobody's Cuter Than You" and is all about friendship.
I loved reading all about the multiple friendships that Melanie had growing up and how she met Gulley. I especially love that she tells it like it is. We all have our husbands but we desperately need girlfriends too. Because as much as I love my husband and he is my best friend, I can't imagine not being able to call my best girl friend when the big things happen. 

In a way, I wished I had saved this book for this week because I really need something to read and I already re-read it. I highly recommend heading out to your local bookstore (I heard rumors it's even at Walmart) and share it with your Gulley when you finish. 

**I was provided with a copy of this book in exchange for my review but I would totally have bought it either way.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

"Buried Secrets" {a review}

Buried Secrets: A Novel (Men of Valor) is a new mystery (and series) by Irene Hannon. Lisa Grant is a big town cop turned small town police chief and Mac McGregor is a SEAL turned county cop. Their paths cross when a human skeleton is unearthed at a construction site. Sparks fly between the cops as they dig into the past, exposing a secret someone means to keep.

Let me begin by telling you that I love Irene Hannon. She tells a story that is easy for me to visualize and keeps me captivated throughout. So when I see that she has a new book I jump to read it. (I am also trying to get her books into my local library because they just aren't there. I can't figure out why.) "Buried Secrets" definitely did not disappoint and I am looking forward to the rest of the series.

Spring break is here in this part of the country and if I was heading to the beach, this would be in my bag. And I would have definitely bought the book if I had not received a review copy.

**I was provided with a copy of this book through the publisher in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own.

***Affiliated links included.

Monday, March 30, 2015

"Savor"ing the Everyday

I just have to tell you about this gorgeous book!

This book is hardcover with a rich texture that will scream "TAKE ME HOME"! Then when you get it home and you are through admiring the sheer prettiness of the packaging and you open it up- you will be so proud of that impulse book buy. You know the one where the cover is gorgeous and you aren't really sure about the book but you buy it anyway.

Savor: Living Abundantly Where You Are, As You Are is a book of devotions of course, but it also is a thought provoking, soul searching kind of book. I really found the questions that are asked everyday making me think hard about areas of my life. And the daily "stories" were fun to read while also making the questions come to life in my mind. Throw in a couple of delicious recipes throughout and this is a best seller in the making.

I am thoroughly looking forward to picking this book up every morning before walking into work and reading that day's passage. Which means a lot because I am the world's worst at actually continuing with a daily devotion book after a few weeks. But this one just keeps calling my name so we will see if I can keep it up!

** I was provided a copy of this book from Icon Media in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own.**

**Of course- affiliated links included.

Monday, March 16, 2015

imperfect Hospitality

I love having people over for dinner and having parties, however I hate to cook and clean to make that happen. Well, not really the cooking part, more the cleaning part.

I have come to realize though that I don't have to have the perfect house to practice hospitality. I just need a willing heart. It also doesn't have to be at my house. I can practice hospitality just by inviting someone to lunch or dinner.

I am good at imperfect hospitality. To me imperfect hospitality is going out to eat at a restaurant instead of at my house. It is not having a completely clean house or a perfectly set table.

Perfect hospitality is the perfectly clean house, a home cooked meal, and a perfectly set table. I am really not good at that.

I love practicing imperfect hospitality. It is normally spur of the moment and ends up being more fun than anything that I could have planned. (And I don't have to clean up afterwards.)

So if your house isn't perfectly clean and it keeps you from asking a friend over for dinner, think about going to a restaurant instead or even grabbing a coffee and sitting in the break room together at work. Because hospitality isn't necessarily hosting people in your home. Hospitality is about hosting people in your heart. Talk to them about God, about life, or about what book you are reading. The point of hospitality is to invest in another person and let them into your heart.

Sometimes, I find myself holding back from practicing hospitality because I get caught up in that perfect image. I have to remind myself that imperfect hospitality is perfect for me. I have to make myself let go of that "perfect" image in my head and remind myself that hospitality of the heart means so much more than hospitality of the home.

Do you like imperfect or perfect hospitality more? What is your favorite way to show hospitality?

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Holley Gerth

Holley has a new book out!!!! And we all know how much I love her and her writing. 

In You're Loved No Matter What: Freeing Your Heart from the Need to Be Perfect , Holley drives home that God loves you despite all your flaws and mistakes. My favorite chapter in this particular book is chapter 2- "Embracing the Freedom That's Already Yours". Maybe it's because this was the chapter that I desperately needed right now or maybe it was because I needed Holley's words right as I was reading, but this was the chapter that meant the most to me. Especially this:
"There's a distinct difference between a mistake and a sin. Mistakes help us learn. Sin is a choice we deliberately make even though we know better. Mistakes are done in innocence. Sin comes from a heart that holds rebellion. Mistakes lead to growth. Sin leads to decay. Not only will you make mistakes, but you must make mistakes. That's the way babies learn to walk, kids find out how to ride bikes, and grown-ups figure out how to find their way in the world."

This book came during a week where I was ready to give up. It seemed like everything I was doing was resulting in failure as a mom and as a wife. But then I read the above quote. For some reason it was those words that reminded me that mistakes happen. I am going to make them and my children are going to make them. That doesn't mean that I am a failure and it doesn't mean that I am loved any less because of the mistakes we are making. And those mistakes are not necessarily a result of my parenting. 
Those mistakes required a whole lot of grace on my part and on the part of others that week. I will admit I did not handle some of it very well.  But that's the thing- God loved us through that week and he gave us the grace that we needed. Grace I had a hard time giving myself.

I wish that everyone of you could meet Holley. I do. Because as I say with all her books, reading her words is like talking to her. She is that friend that everyone needs to have. 

**I received this book in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own. 
***Affiliated links used in this post. 

Friday, March 13, 2015

"Big Thoughts for Little People"

I love apps that will teach my children something while letting them have fun.

Miles has a favorite new app on my iPhone and I am excited to share it with you. It is called "Big Thoughts for Little People". (Or as Miles calls it the "ABC game) When you download the game you automatically get 3 letters. Each letter comes with a puzzle, a memory verse, a "color and trace" page, and a couple more activities. Miles especially loves the puzzles and tracing pages. We have all the letters and once your child plays the app once, you will too. The app is better on an iPad but I don't have one of those. It works great on the iPhone too but the bigger letters would be great.

As you can see, the graphics are great and very kid friendly. 

I would love for this app to be available on Androids too because I would put it on Miles' tablet in a heartbeat. Until then though, I guess I will be sharing my iPhone every chance he can get. 

Oh and apparently I am completely unable to link to the App Store so go to the store and search. I am recommending this app to everyone I know.