Friday, February 28, 2014

Friday Faves: Elijana Cosmetics, Confidence is Key

I'm going to be honest, I'm not very confident. I know I've said it on the blog before and I really do mean it. I'm not one of those girls that thinks she's beautiful or expects people to talk about how great she looks...I'm really not. Of course I have days that I think "man, this outfit looks good on me" or "damn, I'm skinny today." I think it wouldn't be healthy if we didn't have days where we thought highly of ourselves.

One of my biggest concerns has been my skin. I used to have perfect skin and didn't think twice about it. As I've gotten older, (maybe after I had E) my skin has changed. I have a lot of redness in my cheeks, I tend to breakout more and I'm getting a few wrinkles...oh, and did I mention that I have bags under my eyes?! There's also something about being a mom that makes you feel like you aren't as pretty as you used to be...maybe it's the hormones, the exhaustion or the fact that you don't have time to spend on yourself. I promised myself when I had E that I wasn't going to be a frumpy mom...that I was going to take time to do my hair and make-up and put on cute clothes. For the most part I've stuck to that...

When I first started blogging, I was talking to Lindsey at Alta moda and she mentioned her wonderful friend Jana of Elijana Cosmetics. Lindsey told me a story about how she had her make-up done for an event and she felt like a million bucks. Now, Lindsey is GORGEOUS and she should feel like a million bucks every day, but I know exactly how she feels. Well, enter collaboration with Jana, Lindsey and me.

The pictures are by my amazing photographer brother Dylan Wilson, make-up is done by Jana at Elijana Cosmetics, clothes and are shoes styled and available at Alta moda and jewelry is Bent by Courtney and Bourbon and Boweties.

If you want to feel really good about yourself, take time...let Jana put your make-up on you and go somewhere special with someone you love :)

"Elijana Retail Store & Makeup Studio is a FIRST for Athens, A place that supplies and applies makeup for all occasions, such as Special Events, Proms, Formals and Weddings. It's the place to stop by and pick up anything you need for your makeup bag. Our motto is 'It's All About You.'"

"Elijana carries their own brand of Mineral Makeup. Everything that they have from face to eyes is good for you, they wanted everything that you were putting on your face to have some form of benefit. So they researched throughout the USA until they found the right manufacturer. So all of their makeup products are made here in the USA. No animal testing."

I want to make this a two-part blog post because there's so much information here. I want you to know how amazing Elijana is, but I also want you know how confident the right make-up and clothes make you feel.
So let's start with Elijana. Jana sat me down and asked me about my skin concerns. I voiced all of them and she really listened. Then she applied mineral makeup to my skin that basically felt like I had no makeup on. It was pretty incredible. We talked about lip color and eye shadow colors...what works for my skin and my hair color (now that I'm brunette).
One of my favorite parts of Elijana Cosmetics is the custom foundation that they make. This was a treat that my mom gave me for my birthday this year. The foundation provides a specific shade for each person's skin tones and any concerns you may have (dry skin, oily skin, etc.). Most women wear the wrong foundation and now I'm wearing the right one...that makes me feel incredibly more confident (no makeup lines here!). Jana uses various colors (purples, greens, blues, yellows and pinks) to mix the perfect color to pick up on the undertones in everyone's skin.
Another thing that I love about Elijana is that they offer hands-on makeup lessons so that you can really learn about what works for you, how to fix colors and where to apply shading. I really had no idea what I was doing as far as makeup!
So instead of sharing all of the pictures today (like I said, this is going to be a two-part post) I'll leave you with a sneak peek. If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook then you've seen it, but without further ado...

Check back for all of the pictures soon :)


Thursday, February 27, 2014

Thrifty Thursday: Gel Nails

I'll be the first to admit that I am the queen of nail polish. You will rarely see me without something on my nails (mainly because they don't grow worth a darn and if I get them painted, them they don't break as easily). I got my first gel manicure when they first came out and of course became obsessed. Two weeks without my nails chipping (Y'all my nails usually chip as soon as I leave the salon). So the hubby bought me the Gelish set for my birthday one year. Basically, it's amazing. This what the starter set looks like (it doesn't come with colors and the light is sold separately).

So this is Thrifty Thursday and you're thinking "that can't be cheap." Well, it is thrifty. This starter kit on Amazon (which actually includes two colors and the UV light) is only $106.24. I hate to tell you, but that's only 3ish gel manicures. That's pretty darn amazing. Okay, so now you're wondering how hard it is. Well, the truth is, is it's not hard at all. I will say that it takes me about 30 minutes to do both my hands (less than getting to the salon and back). It's a total of 5 coats on each finger (PH bond, base, color x2, top coat). You also have to spend 45ish seconds under the UV light on each coat (I usually try to do my thumbs with the rest of my fingers to save time). So as long as you can paint your nails (and if it gets on your skin, it rubs right off) then you can totally do it at home! The colors of polish cost about $14 but they last forever. I have a bunch of colors and love to swap them out.

So an at home Gelish manicure lasts me a little less than 2 weeks (I've had a couple last longer than two weeks). I think it depends on how rough I've been on my hands, etc.) and a pedicure lasts a month. I still love having a good pedicure at the salon, but I have the manicures under control now :)


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Stella and Dot Trunk Show!

A couple of weeks ago, I shared Ashley's story about why she loved selling Stella & Dot so much and you got to see all of the awesome jewelry that I got to wear! Well, I knew that I wanted to have a trunk show after playing in all of her jewelry...and that's just what we did. Ashley made it super easy to organize. I sent her the e-mail addresses of all of the ladies I wanted to invite, she sent out the invitation and even offered to bring food and wine (I didn't take her up on this, but what an incredibly nice offer!). I invited people from all kinds of my groups (co-workers, church friends, Junior League friends, neighbors and family members). I had the perfect turnout at around 10 people. I made the food simple since I was at work the entire day: cookies, brownies and lots of wine! Ashley set up all of the jewelry and I have to say it's all sooo pretty!

This is just a small sampling of all of the amazing jewelry. The best part was that we all got to try on everything and wear it around. Ashley also had a ton of bags that several people purchased.
Maegan was my roommate for the week and also came to the party :) She's hosting a trunk show in a few much fun!
We were just trying out all of the goodies!

I should have taken more pictures. My husband thought I was crazy for only getting a few shots, but I was having fun chatting and trying on jewelry.

The best part was spending time with the girls...the second best part was all of the free rewards you get!

I've already got my Milana Tassel Necklace, Nancy Studs, Adelaide Hoops and Madison Tech Bag on the way. I still have more rewards to use too! 

If you'd like to make a purchase, please e-mail me ( for the direct link to my trunk show. My trunk show closes on March 14, 2014. I'd love for you to buy something to make you feel special. 

If you're interested in hosting a trunk show, contact Ashley Bardash at and she will help you out (if you're not in her area, she can help connect you with another seller).


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Tasty Tuesday: Crockpot French Toast

The hubs found this recipe at: and I made it for Sunday School one morning. I kind of failed you guys when I didn't actually take a picture of it in the crockpot (or when it was done). BUT I do swear to you that this is super easy and amazing. One thing I would change, is I'd either do less bread or more of the milk and egg mixture (so that it's super moist).
Whisk together, eggs, milk and cinnamon and pour over diced bread in a large bowl. Let it soak overnight, or for a least 4 hours in the fridge.

In a small bowl mix together butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, pecans and nutmeg and crumble over the top of the bread mixture.

1 loaf of bread, diced
6 eggs
2 cups milk
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ cup butter, softened
½ firmly packed brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
½ cup chopped pecans
Dash of nutmeg


Whisk together, eggs, milk and cinnamon and pour over diced bread in a large bowl. Let it soak overnight, or for a least 4 hours in the fridge.
Spray the inside of a crock-pot with non-stick spray.
Pour in soaked bread mixture.
In a small bowl mix together butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, pecans and nutmeg and crumble over the top of the bread mixture.
Cover and cook on low for 4 hours or on high for 2 hours.


Monday, February 24, 2014

Monday Memories

Wow, what a busy week! I feel like I've had zero down time this week, but it was a super fun! Where to even begin?! In fact, it was so busy that I barely remembered to take pictures. Oops! I can't believe how nice the weather has been this week. After a week of snow and ice, it's like God knew that I couldn't handle anymore. We've had temperatures in the 60s and 70s and I'm loving every second of it.

On Tuesday, I took a much needed run in my parents neighborhood. They have a beautiful lake (do you remember the picture from last week of it sleeting while I was running?!) and I was so excited to see the sun shining brightly. I think I ran a million hills, but it was so much better than running in the sleet.
Tuesday evening one of my best girlfriends (and co-worker) came into town for some work obligations. We decided that Tuesdays should be made for wearing leather and sushi dates. We had a lot of fun dressing up and having a girls' night.
I wish I could tell you that this was a good margarita, but it was really horrible. Worthless amount of calories.
The sushi on the other hand was amazing...and worth every calorie...if you don't know this about me, I don't eat fish/seafood or any meat except for of course my sushi was vegetarian (and fried ;)).
 We had to do several photos because we didn't love any of them :)
Maegan gave me this awesome Kate Spade coffee mug (I mean I do love coffee and Kate Spade an uber amount, so it was kind of perfect. She also gave me Hammond's chocolate which was equally amazing.
Thursday evening was my Stella and Dot party (post to come on this soon). It was so much fun getting together with the girls, drinking wine and shopping (and trying on gorgeous jewels).
 And of course my roomie for the week and I had to pose...because that's how we roll :)
Friday E and I had our usual Chick fil A date (no pictures from Friday for some reason...I guess because I'm lame).

Saturday was gorgeous...nice warm weather and after an awesome 6 mile run (okay I didn't think it was awesome while it was happening) I slid on a Lilly dress and my Jack Rogers (it felt soooooo good to wear sandals!).
Saturday evening, we went to dinner and came home to snuggle, drink wine and put on stretchy pants. I was pretty tired.
It was a great week with an amazing friend...I love hanging out with Maegan and laughing my butt off. She and I can devour a bowl of candy within minutes and drink a bottle of wine like we dying of thirst. Hope y'all had a great week!


Friday, February 21, 2014

Friday Faves: Jill Massey Couture Jewelry

It's not every day that you find a piece of jewelry that you literally want to wear every day. Well friends, I have found that piece and after posting many pictures of it, I think you know which one I mean. I found Jill Massey on Etsy and became obsessed with her necklaces. I've always wanted something to wear around my neck with E's name on it. Jill was super easy to work with and sooo sweet! And I believe I found the perfect necklace. The best part was that I got it on the weekend of my birthday, so I got to wear it a lot!
So let me tell you about Jill Massey Couture Jewelry. Every piece is created by hand from raw materials (even the little pieces like the jump rings and ear wire). Her studio is in Atlanta, Georgia, but she also sells to about 40 high-end speciality boutiques in the Southeast and Florida (like Sand Piper in Atlanta, Copper Penny in Charleston, Moda Boutique in Nashville and Shimmering Seas in Seaside). There is a small cluster of metal smiths that are hand selected to be part of her team.
Jill is from Georgia, lived in San Francisco for 6 years and was a buyer for Gap! She missed the South, so she headed back to make Jill Massey Couture Jewelry a Southern Based Business.

Below are some pictures that show you just how versatile this necklace is. It goes with everything...dress up, sweater, layered with another necklace or even a t-shirt! The nameplate necklace comes in silver or gold and you can add up to 14 characters. You can add your husband's name, kid's name, a nickname, initials or even a date! Have fun with it!

Jill Massey Couture Jewelry also has lots of other amazing pieces. I'm dying for the Amazing Grace bracelet.
 I'd love to have my hometown latitude and longitude added to this My Favorite Place necklace.
 I also LOVE these Midi (knuckle ring) fun is this?!

So where can you find Jill Massey Couture Jewelry?
Etsy and Facebook!

Check out her amazing really is incredible and Jill will make it extra special for you :)


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Thursday Thoughtfulness: Mommyhood Isn't so Glamorous

I think I'll be making Thursdays a day that I will switch out Thrifty Thursday and Thoughtfulness (what used to be on Tuesdays). This blog is every evolving, so bear with me as I figure out what works best for me and what my readers prefer (if you have a preference, let me know!).

I've had several people tell me that I make mommyhood look glamorous. I wanted to let you know that there's no truth to that. I started this blog to be 100% honest with my readers. Truth is, being a mom is the hardest thing I've ever done. Don't get me wrong, I love every (almost) second of it and love E more than anything in the world, but I'm exhausted 90% of the time, when OCD kicks in it takes me an hour to clean the playroom and gasp...sometimes I raise my voice.

Want to know how unglamorous my life is? Here's my day in a nutshell:
Wake up at some God awful hour (I don't sleep anyway, so I'm practically already up), shower/get dressed as quickly as possible (in hopes of not waking a soul, so I can have 5 seconds of peace), sneak out of my room (already woke the dog, who now needs to go out and be the cat is meowing...and I still haven't fixed my coffee). I finally get my coffee made and become alive, I eat the same breakfast that I've eaten for the past 4 years and sit down...a couple of sips of coffee later and I hear e...I bring him down, turn on the TV and feed him breakfast. By this time the cat has puked somewhere and I pray that I don't step in it before I can clean it up. I wake up the hubs, then get e dressed and I'm out the door to work (I work 2.5 days a week). 

On days I'm home, it's even less's errands and laundry and meals and cleaning.

So see, I'm not that cool. By the end of the day I'm lucky if I have makeup on one eye and have remember to brush my teeth. I don't have a cleaning lady, I don't shop all day... I hang out with the sweetest (most active little boy in the world). I beg him most days to take a nap, let him sleep in the bed with 1000s of toys and don't care how picky he is with his food.

And that's the absolute truth. I am beyond thankful that I get to work part-time and stay home with E...I wouldn't change it for the world. BUT it's tough and so not glamorous. I put on real clothes just to stay sane and wear make-up everyday to cover up the bags under my eyes :)


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Workout Wednesday: Training for a Half

I'm in the midst of training for my next half marathon in April and every time someone sees that I'm out running, I get a lot of questions about training (which I seriously am no expert on). Basically when I started running last summer, with the guidance of a good friend/runner and some articles on Runner's World, I set out to make my own training schedule.

The Hal Higdon Training Plan is one of the most popular ones and I used a similar guideline. Also, most races offer some kind of training plan. I trained for 3 months (pretty hardcore) but you may want to train longer. I am by no means an expert (I've already said that) but people do ask I thought I'd tell you what works for me.

So, because I continue running when I'm not training for a race (and my max during that time is 4 miles) I don't have to start right at 1 mile (or half a mile). When I started training for my half last year, I'd never run farther than 2 miles in my life, so my first "long run" was 3 miles. I will say that what I found on most all plans is that running 4 days a week is key and using a day of cross-training is also helpful (I do Pilates on that day). So that really leaves me 2 days of rest...and trust me, your body needs rest. So let's just say you've been running and you want to train in 3 months for a half marathon in April (which is exactly what I'm doing). I will make my first "long run" 4 miles. So my week would look something like this:

Monday: 3 miles, Tuesday: Pilates, Wednesday: 3 miles, Thursday: 2 miles, Friday: rest, Saturday: 4 miles, Sunday: rest

I try to never run more than 2 days in a row unless it's three short runs in a row (ex: 3 miles, 2 miles, 3 miles). You should also never increase your mileage in a week more than 10% (1 mile). So you'd never go from running 5 miles to running 8 miles. That's a good way to get injured (PS I sprained my ankle before the last half, was out for 4 weeks and was miserable...don't do it).

So each week, I would increase my long run by 1 mile (Week 2):

Monday: 3 miles, Tuesday: Pilates, Wednesday, 3 miles, Thursday: 2 miles, Friday: rest, Saturday: 5 miles, Sunday: rest

You obviously don't have to run on the exact same days I run and you don't have to run 3, 3, 2, long in that order. Break it up, have fun with it.

So I do this until I reach 10 miles (I don't run the full 13 before the half). and then I start to taper off for the two weeks before the race (so I'd do something like 3, 2, 3, 5 and 3, 2, 3, 6). Then the week of the race, I do an easy peasy schedule (2, 3, 15 minutes, RACE).

Does all of that make sense? I print off blank calendars and put them on the fridge with how many miles I'm going to run each day (that way I know and my family knows). Another thing I find helpful is to think the entire day before a long run about it and peptalk myself (I read inspirational things, eat healthy and stay really positive).

For me, running is so mental it's ridiculous. If I think for one second on a run that I can't go any farther, I start getting tired and slowing down. I also believe that you can't let anything stop you from running (i.e. weather, kids or a mental block). When there was still snow on the ground, I knew I had to run. I hate treadmill running with a passion, so I knew I'd be running outside. If you think "it's too cold, I'm going to freeze" you're probably going to have a crappy run.

Like I said 100 times, I'm no expert...and this is only my second half. I wouldn't even be writing this if I weren't asked by several people (and it's easier to post a blog on it then send the same e-mail to 10 different people). Listen to your body. Find a plan that works for you. If you're just starting out, don't push so hard that you're going to get hurt. Find your happy running place :)


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Tasty Tuesday: Banana Cookies

I first made these cookies when I was carb-loading before my first half marathon. I needed something healthy, not too heavy and full of carbs (these guys have 19 g of carbs in them!). I can't remember the exact place that I found the recipe for can Google them and literally find hundreds of them (so I'm sorry if this is a repeat). My husband loves these for breakfast (or a snack while he's working) and E calls them "Nanner cookies." They are 3 ingredients...yep, that's it!

Your ingredient list: chocolate chips, bananas and oatmeal (I would suggest trying nuts too, but I'm highly allergic to nuts so I've never tried it).
 Basically you mash the bananas together, stir in the oatmeal and then fold in the chocolate chips.
 Put them on a cookie sheet (about a 2 in ball) and bake at 350 for 15 minutes.
I sweat that's it! I know it's hard to believe how easy they are...but that's really it!


2 ripe bananas (the browner the better), mashed
1 cup of uncooked quick oatmeal
1/4 cup of chocolate chips (or nuts)

Directions:Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet with a cooking spray.
Stir in oatmeal into your mashed banana. Fold in the chocolate chips. Place a 2 in ball (or so) on the cookie sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes.

Bam! Yummy!


Monday, February 17, 2014

Monday Memories

What a crazy week with snow, ice and even an earthquake! I'm happy that the temperatures will be in the 70s this week! Praise The Lord! Can't handle the cold much longer! Needless to say, we didn't do much this week other than play in the snow. I didn't go to work at all this week and let's just say, I am way behind on blogging! Thursday was the hubs birthday but I didn't get to the store for his steak...which was ok because we ended up going to a going away party anyway (I was so grateful to get out of the house, I didn't care where I was going)! My inlaws did make it up thanks to some warm temps and melting snow. We've had a great time with them...lots of eating! I hope you had a great week and I promise to work hard on the blog...

This seems like 100 years ago...seriously, it was just last Monday.
My cutie liked my curls and requested a picture for proof.
Nothing like running 3 miles in sleet, but I knew it'd be a million years before I got another run in.
Our first day was mainly ice...
But then it just kept coming!
Happy birthday hubs (and soo happy to be out of the house!!)!
Happy Valentine's Day! I even got A message from Kohls about how I styles this top!
Wine in crystal planted in the snow...a must!
E was just picking up some vino for me.
We are beyond thankful for sunshine!!