Holiday Gift Guide: For Her

GIFT COLLAGE

One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight

In the spirit of holiday shopping coming up in the next couple of days; I thought I would put together a gift guide for the special someone gal in your life. Personally speaking when I am in a relationship with someone I will get them a main gift then a few other things that I know that they will like.

I am not opposed to gift cards, I think they are a great add-on; but I would personally wouldn’t buy a gift card for someone and make it their main gift. I think when it comes to gift giving, I think it is only right to put some thought into it; make it special.

If I had to choose three items that are my favorite, I would definitely say my iPad; when I travel it goes with me and it’s great to watch Netflix on. Plus there are so many other great features that makes it worth investing in. My second choice would be the getaway bag, I love going away for long weekend trips so this would ideal for a weekend escapes. Plus it looks to be so durable; and I just love the two outside pockets! You definitely can’t go wrong with traveling gear, especially if you enjoy traveling like me. Lastly, the Chanel perfume; this is my far my favorite perfume in the world, the scent is so light and fresh. It’s just perfect, I enjoy wearing all year round.

Do you like the holiday gift guides? I have a few others that I would like to do within the next couple of weeks. I am thinking about doing a gift guide for him…thoughts?

Happy Shopping! I hope you have a blast, and be safe!

**This is not a sponsored post, wording in blue are links**

 

Work Week Wrap Up..That’s a Mouthful!

I thought it would be fun to wrap up the work week with my favorite photos.  There is no rhyme or reason to the photos, some of them will have links so make sure to check them out!

IMG_2597

I stole an hour to myself one evening,  it was enough for me to recharge and gather my thoughts. Sometime I love just sitting in a Starbucks and reading, typically if I am heading up to Starbucks I bring my iPad, but this was an impromptu trip.

I don’t know about you, but I am loving the new holiday Starbucks cup.

If you are curious about the lipstick stain on the cup; it’s the brand Bite in Sour Cherry.

Also, last year I did a small review on that lipstick you can read about it here.

IMG_2614

This pie is amazing and super easy to make. If you searching for a pie for Thanksgiving then this is the pie to bring. You can learn how to make it here!

IMG_2678

This is probably one of my favorite candid photos from this week. Sophia loves to help me cook, but recently she has been loving scrambled eggs for breakfast. She is now even asking them for lunch sometimes.

IMG_2704

On Tuesday night I was beyond cold, no matter how many layers I was wearing I couldn’t seem to get warm. Around 11pm at night I ran a hot bubble bath with a cup of tea.  I played Words with Friends for about 45 minutes and loved it. Then I crawled into bed and passed out until 6:57am.

IMG_2728

 

If you missed this weeks post on the best homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte that is super easy to make you can check it out here!

IMG_2716

If you are in the market for a new highlighter, I highly recommend Nars in Hot Sand. It gives a nice glow without looking like you rolled your cheeks in glitter. Another aspect that I like is you can control how intense of a highlight you want. I bought this earlier this year, and I barely put a dent in it.

My absolute favorite part is it doesn’t break me out at all. Major brownie points in my book!

IMG_2651

Isn’t she beautiful? This little girl is the center of my whole world. My favorite holiday is approaching…Christmas. I am really looking forward to seeing Sophia’s reaction to different things. Since her birth I have been anticipating for the days that she believes in Santa and all the fun magic that comes with it. I am so excited to experience Christmas again through her eyes and continue with some of my favorite family traditions with her.

Speaking of traditions, I recently pulled out of storage all of our winter clothes, and I came across the Elf on the Shelf. When does yours make its grand appearance? I have been hearing the day after Thanksgiving.

Also…does your elf leave your kiddos little surprises? Sophia loves bath bombs, I was thinking of running to Bath and Body Works and grab a Twisted Peppermint Bath Bomb as a surprise…thoughts?

IMG_2638

On Monday Sophia had her 3 year old check-up. I am please to share that Sophia is healthy as a horse. Which I am absolutely grateful for!

If you noticed that jacket that I am wearing is from my Winter Wardrobe Staples post. It’s my favorite jacket for the new winter season and it’s super warm!

My final thought is: What kind of future blog posts are you interested in me doing? And are you interested in video blog posts? Please share!

 

Kristina’s Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte

IMG_2728 Nails and Mug

Do you follow Kristina Kuzmic on Facebook or Instagram? If you don’t…you should!! I do, I believe I have watched every video she has ever made; she is my alter ego. Her mom truth is the best, and absolutely relatable.

If you follow her on Instagram, a few days ago she made a minute video about her homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte…it had me at…Pumpkin and easy to make.

Once Sophia was fast asleep, I brewed a fresh pot of coffee and made her homemade creamer!

What You Need:

3 TBSP. of Pumpkin Puree

2 Cups of Milk

3 TBSP. White Sugar

1/2 Tsp. Pumpkin spice

1 TBSP. Vanilla

Preparation:

  1. Put everything in a pot on the stove, bring to a simmer and then add to your morning coffee. It’s a easy as that!

SAMSUNG CSC

Whisk…whisk…whisk….say that three times fast!

SAMSUNG CSC

Yum!

IMG_2718

IMG_2719

Just think I saved you a trip to your local Starbucks and a few bucks! If you like your coffee to be sweet I would recommend adding another TBSP of sugar. The sugar can definitely be to taste, I would start with the recommended amount of sugar then add more if needed. That is absolutely up to you!

I hope your Thursday is as good as your homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte!

Winter Wardrobe Staples

BeFunky Collage

    One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six

My winter wardrobe has gotten so much more basic and neutral over the last couple of years. When I became a mom three years ago I completely changed as a person; my full attention was on Sophia and being the best mom I could. And lets just say my wardrobe has become more versatile and easy going.

And can I say comfortable!

Before motherhood, I worked as a CSR Rep, I wore high heels, hair and make-up was always done…lets just say I was put together nicely. A few years later I traded the high heels in for flat shoes and messy buns. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

When you are a single mom on a budget you have to reuse some of your clothes from the previous seasons and know how to make them last. I picked out a few of my favorite worn staples and new staples to my winter wardrobe and let’s just say….some Ugg boots that are way out of my price line, but I did have ones that were very similar three years ago and loved them! They lasted for three years…all winter long…and I wore them every… single…day!

The jacket is from Old Navy, my mom surprised me and bought it for me this past weekend. I was complaining to her how badly I need a winter jacket that covers my back side, it was on sale for a really amazing price. It’s warm, long and so pretty in person; the photo does not do it justice by any means. And it would be ideal to wear a blanket scarf with it. If you got the Fall FabFitFun box the blanket scarf that was included in the box is perfect….and I mean perfect.

I would have to say the most versatile item that I wear all year around is the long t-shirt; and they are only ten dollars! Super comfortable and they go past your waste area….thrilling! For me that is!

I really dislike t-shirts that are only to the waste. Another plus..you can dress it up or down with some fun jewels and a bold lipstick!

So fun!

BeFunky Collage-2

Seven, Eight, Nine, Ten, Eleven

My two favorite favorite winter staples from above are the cardigans and the peekaboo long sleeve shirt. You can’t go wrong with a cardigan, for me that is another item that you can dress up or dress down. Personally I always have two staple cardigans hanging in my closet, I typically either have one that is a black or gray color and the other is a brighter tone like a cranberry.

Isn’t cranberry a beautiful color? You can’t got wrong with the color cranberry, it can be matched with so many other colors like navy…or gold. So pretty.

Anyways, I absolutely love a shirt that shows a little back. To me nothing is more sexier than a shirt that shows some skin in back…so playful. Throw that shirt on with a cute lacy cami, jeans or leggings with some cute boots…topped with a bold lip and call it a date night!

Honestly speaking when it come to my winter wardrobe, I love to be comfortable and warm. Pittsburgh weather is so unpredictable that I prefer to have an assortment of different clothing options for those odd days in January where you can catch me wearing flip-flops. I am personally hoping for a white Christmas this year and a milder winter for the upcoming months next year!

What are you favorite winter wardrobe staples?

**This is not a sponsored post, and the wording in blue are links.**

 

 

 

 

Links & Loves & Thoughts

IMG_2601

It has been quite sometime since I have done a links & loves & thoughts post. Life has been anything but boring; and by the end of the night I am ready for bed. Sleep has become a priority in my life…well, second to Sophia of course.

Sophia and I spent four days in North Carolina this past week visiting her grandparents (a future post); we came home Monday night.

Before we left for North Carolina Sophia and I both had wicked colds going down, then 48 hours upon our return home..I sprain my left foot. It hurts so bad, but I do have it wrapped which helps so much…

Let’s just say I am happy it wasn’t my right foot….

Any remedies for a sprain? It’s my first one EVER and it has me limping. It kills when I put my shoes on and walk on it.

Ugh. So frustrating.

On a happier note, I have to share with your my ultimate favorite perfume EVER! Chance- Eau Tendre by Chanel. The first time I smelled this was several months ago. I was not in search of a new perfume; I hardly wear it as is. But this was like the gates of heaven opened up and the angels sang; because I found my signature scent! That has never happened before. If you are looking for a light scented perfume that is not over powering but has a slight sweet fruit scent with grapefruit undertones. Then this beauty is your new best friend, and the best part is you can wear it day or night. Plus the holidays are slowly approaching and this would be the perfect stocking stuffer. Please take my word for it….it’s amazing.

Have you heard of the brand Fresh? I have their one facial mask, that I purchased last year…BUT have you tried this Sugar Lips? I have not; but Nordstrom has their complete set that looks amazing.

This is a staple in my skin care routine, I dislike the scent; but it’s so worth it though.

I am sort of obsessed with him, and reading this book.

My favorite tea to make at home daily.

Have you ever made a vision board?

Some of these appetizers look so good, I might just have to try some new ones this holiday season!

Shows and movies I am loving on Netflix; Wanted, Kristy, The Blacklist, Leap Year.

 

Fall Adventures

SAMSUNG CSC

First and Foremost Sophia and I would love to wish everyone a Happy Halloween. If your kiddos are school I am pretty sure they are celebrating among their friends. This morning Sophia’s class did a mini Halloween production with a couple of songs that they have been practicing all October.

It was adorable to watch, even brought a tear to my eye because she is growing up so quickly.

Anyways, I thought it would be fun to share with you some of the photos I took of Sophia, my mom and I going at some fall festivals over the past couple of weeks.

The photos are random!

SAMSUNG CSC

The first festival we went too was close to an hour away. It was awesome, there was so much to do; I am pretty sure we didn’t see or do everything. Sophia wanted her face painted “just like all the other kids,” That was the first activity we did. I am so happy she ended up going with the butterfly, her initial choice was Spiderman.

SAMSUNG CSC

All three of us went on a hayride, all along the hayride there was hundred of apple trees. We had every intention of picking apples that day, but the bee’s were going absolutely insane; and the idea of Sophia or my mom (she’s allergic) getting stung wasn’t worth it.

My mom instead bought a basket of some of the best apples in the world!

SAMSUNG CSC

My mom and Sophia did the sack slide, I assume that is what you call it. I didn’t do it, that weekend I had a really bad pinched nerve in my right shoulder that ran all the way to my neck. Carrying my camera around my neck was really uncomfortable.

Sophia had a ball, she even went down two or three times alone.

SAMSUNG CSC

How adorable is he?

IMG_2224

The next day we went to another Pumpkin Patch that was much…much closer to home. How do you like that girls face in the background? I did not notice it until I uploaded my photos to my computer.

If anyone has little ones, a decent photo with your children is rare! This photo took about 100 times.

SAMSUNG CSC

Sophia and I in a TeePee tent! I always love getting a photo inside of this TeePee, it’s a must!

SAMSUNG CSC

Sophia found her Pumpkin for this year! When she was a little over a year she thought the pumpkin were orange balls. She ran all over the Pumpkin Patch saying “orange balls…orange balls…orange balls..” it was adorable!

SAMSUNG CSC

She has been dying to ride a school bus, every time she notices one she mentions it to me. I always tell her “when you’re a little bit bigger.”

I may have to take a bus into the city with her sometime, “borrow,” a few of my moms bus tickets. She would enjoy it! Sophia rode the bus with my mom a few years ago when she was still in the car seat.

We had a lot of fun at the fall festivals this year, I just wish the fall season would last forever.

Sophia and I are going trick-or- treating tonight (well…I am walking with her), it’s super cold now I can only imagine how cold it will be tonight. We are definitely wearing layers!

Follow on Instastories to see tonights fun at Sarah_BellaLife

We hope you have a safe and fun Halloween!

 

Changes

SAMSUNG CSC

I contemplated for weeks now if I was going to write a final post on my divorce, and honestly speaking this is a very raw post and I don’t have anything planned as to what I am going to say; except the truth.

My divorce was final on October 3, prior to my divorce I have been waiting for some sort of verification from my lawyer of when the divorce was going to be final; but they reassured me that we are on the “courts time,” and it could take several weeks.

When I received the paperwork with my attorneys address on it in the mail, I knew exactly what it was. I went inside the house and just looked at it and thought…

Here it is, the piece of paper that dissolves everything. I instantly got a flashback of the day we got married; thought about how happy we were and how at that point in my life 3 years later I would be sitting at my parents house holding an envelope that ends everything. Who would have thought three years ago this is where I would be; I never thought a millions years this is where we would be.

I opened the envelope and  for the first time in months I cried, I cried so hard that I started laughing…uncontrollably. I couldn’t tell you if it was out of sadness or relief that the divorce process was done with.

At that moment I gained my freedom and I gained my life back. There was such a relief that came over me and for the first time in a really long time there was light at the end of the tunnel. That moment I finally started to think about my future. My wants, my needs and even emotions were not going to be put on the back burner.

Then I can finally move on with my life.

If there is one thing that I would want you to know is that I loved my ex-husband with all my heart. I wanted us to grow old together, have more babies and just be happy, but sometimes life hands you some major curve balls and you have no choice but to make hard decisions. That is the funny part about life that you do not have the control that you think you do and sometimes you have no choice but to walk away.

“I guess it’s gonna break me down
Like fallin’ when I’m try to fly
It’s sad but sometimes
Moving on with the rest of your life
Starts with goodbye.”- Carrie Underwood- Starts with Goodbye

SAMSUNG CSC

On the other hand, I am very excited to see what the future holds…yes it can be quite intimidating and daunting; because I am starting over. Completely over. Most of my possessions are in my storage unit, untouched or unused bridal shower gifts still remain in their boxes and I have no grand plan for my life right now.

I do however plan on catching up on life. I am so ready to meet new people, possibly date someone, be the best mom I can for Sophia and just enjoy my life with her. After all she is my main priority.

As for my blog, I do have a new idea up my sleeve that I just contacted a good friend of mine over tonight. Lets just say it is going to put a different twist on things a bit and it sort of make me nervous (but nervous excited). I believe it will be a good and healthy change. I have decided that the change will not happen until after the holidays; but we are collaborating   and starting the process of making our thoughts into actions.

Lets just say, we want to empower you, inspire you and to make you into the best version of yourself that you can be; but I will touch base on that more later.

But I promise my regular posts are not going anywhere.

My blog is just expanding.

With all of this in mind I hope you have a fantastic Friday!