Hope everyone is enjoying the start of the holiday season. I try every year to not get swept up in the Cyber Monday deals. I was watching Love Your Melon website since they came out with a new product every 2 hours. Since 50% of the proceeds go to pediatric cancer, it was a way to shop and feel good about it. They had some amazing items like ombré style beanies and blankets. I purchased a little more than I will probably be keeping. They sell out of the colors so quickly. The amazing part is that they reached their 1 million dollar goal for donations towards fighting pediatric cancer. It was nice to be part of that in a small way.
I have also taken the time to decorate the porch and around the house. I put very minimal decorations up before Thanksgiving and I thought I would add more later. However, the more time I spend in the living room / dining room area, I am leaning towards keeping it very simple this year. We have the tree up and then 12 electric candles spread around with silver, clear and white accents. It is very calm looking. Not cluttered at all.
Winter Skin / Beauty (All cruelty-free) = All very hydrating
- Zoe Organic Skin Balm = I buy one of these tins each year around this same time. My hands from the weather get super dry. I apply this skin balm before I go to bed since it is a thicker balm and a little greasy. It does soak in but it takes a little bit. You also only need a small dime size amount so the tin will last a long time. I feel like I need this balm more than regular lotion. I purchased mine from Amazon.
- 100% organic, packed with vitamins like A, E and D
- It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-in Product = After I just wash my hair and it is a little damp from towel drying, I spray this all over, concentrating on the middle section to the ends. Meaning I avoid spraying too much at my hair roots. This leaves my hair so super shiny and silky. I find that it is easier to comb out when wet. I find this again every winter season because I need a little extra conditioner. Also purchased from Amazon.
- It is called “It’s a 10” because the back of the bottle lists the 10 things it does for your hair. I do find them to be true. Repairs, adds shine, detangles, controls frizz, protects colored hair, prevents split ends, stops breakage, silky hair, extra body and heat protector.
- Andalou Naturals Leave-in Conditioner = If you like a cream instead of a spray. This would be my second choice for a leave-in conditioner for your hair. I tend to alternate using this and the “It’s a 10” spray. I also go between two different shampoos too since I like to have some variety to my hair care. I purchased mine from Vitacost.com.
- This product is part of their fruit stem-cell science which is actually neat to read about = http://andalou.com/our-story/our-innovation
- EO Products Ageless Skin Care Transformative Night Serum = This stuff is amazing! If you look up nothing else, take a minute to click on the EO Products website and read more about this night time facial oil. The ingredients are high quality and it has a light (not oily) feeling on the skin. This is my last step in my night time cleansing routine. I apply to my face and neck and rub the rest in my hands. Then I let it soak in and apply my eye cream. If I had naturally very oil skin, I might not have tried this product. Since my skin is very sensitive and is normal to dry, it was perfect for me. So at night time, I like to make sure I take great care of my skin and give it the nutrients it needs. I purchased mine from Vitacost.com. The EO Products line is becoming a staple in our home. I buy everything from body wash, hand soap, sanitizer, and deodorant from this brand. I have never been disappointed by any of their products that I have tried.
- Plant-based antioxidants, omega fatty acids and a mixture of oils including avocado and tsubaki (good for fine lines and wrinkles).
- Andalou Natural Konjac Facial Sponge Duo (sensitive version) = Since my skin is super sensitive, I tend to avoid any cleansers with exfoliating micro-beads or scrubs. However, I know that it is important to remove the dead skin cells. So I have been testing out some brands of scrub cleansers which so far have just left my skin red and produced a couple of breakouts. So I keep going back to using my Acure Organics Sensitive Facial Cleanser which is a smooth cream cleanser that is very gentle. So when I found out about these sponges, I felt that I it was the best of both worlds. I get to still use my favorite Acure cleanser and I get some gentle exfoliation with the sponge duo. You run the sponge under water for a couple of minutes to get it soft. Then I use it with my cleanser and make circles all over my face and neck. It spreads my cleanser evenly and also I get a gentle removal of dull and dry skin cells. I rinse it out and then hang to dry. They last 1-3 months depending on how often you use it.
- Comenzar brand birch electric candle set with remote = My focus of decorations this year is a bunch of electric candles. They have such a nice warm glow and they either flicker or have a steady light depending on your selection on the remote. I like having the remote since I can turn them on all at once. They also have a timer function that you can set. The reviews on Amazon were good and the price was reasonable for a complete set. They do not have any scent. Each candle takes two AA batteries.
- Duracell Rechargeable Batteries = Definitely needed more batteries due to the candles. I decided to try rechargeable ones since I really hate to use up regular batteries. They have been working out so great. Especially since I want to run my candles every day so I can leave them on and not feel like I am “wasting” batteries.
Black Friday / Cyber Monday Deals
- Alex and Ani Snowflake Charm Bracelet = Each year Alex and Ani comes out with a limited edition snowflake bracelet that has a charm with the year on it. They had a sale on this bracelet on Black Friday and I had to get it. This is a collection that I started last year and I just love them. Super sparkly and easy to wear and layer with other pieces.
- Love Your Melon = I mentioned this a ton already. I purchased a few items on Cyber Monday. So far I just received one hat and a scarf I ordered and I love them. Great quality (cotton yard) and they fit very well. They also have wool hat versions in case you want that type.
- Cars 3
- Despicable Me 3
- I would say that if you enjoyed the previous two animated movies in these series, then you will enjoy these as well. Sometimes movie series can get diluted and not as funny with multiple movies but these really hit the mark. Very funny and glad we purchased them since we will want to re-watch later.
- Present over Perfect: Leading Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living (author Shauna Niequist)= I find books in many places. Going to the library and getting lost in the aisles, having a friend recommend a title or just randomly searching online. I feel however that this book found me. It is a recap of a woman’s journey from a busy lifestyle where work was her priority to a more simple way of living. It described my past year in a way that I would have a difficult time putting into words. The similarities with her experiences and my life were uncanny. I found some parts difficult to listen to (I did an audio book) because of how close to home it was hitting me. I recommend to anyone who wants to take a step back and gain some perspective on what is really important. I plan on downloading more of her books.
- “Head High” by Alexander Jean
- “Shake” by Pitbull & Ying Yang Twins
- “Let Me Go” by Hailee Stienfeld