Archive of ‘Featured’ category

Reading Pretty: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

Magic copy

I’m sure you have heard of this little book that has become a juggernaut about clearing clutter for EVER. Like ever, ever? The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo is not only a best seller, but really a game changer. I’m serious. No joke. The book makes you think of everything you own, desire, and love as either joyful or not. It’s really simple. Every item you touch a piece of clothing, paper, or book you ask yourself “does this bring me joy?” If it doesn’t it goes. I am a big believer in donating, so after a few hours of using this method I had four large garbage bags ready to go to Goodwill and a shelter. I got rid of all the yoga clothes I don’t wear anymore, coats, shoes, bags, and much more. Also, Marie doesn’t recommend using old clothes as “lounge” clothes so you don’t “save” them. I look forward to the beautiful boudoir pieces I’ve acquired by not recycling them. I honored them for their purpose and let them go.

It not only helped me in what I have, but what I buy. Totally crazy for me. I don’t hoard clothes, but beauty products? Yep. I had lotions I bought in Greece from 2006. Yes, girl. I went through and tossed them because most only had a fourth of product left. This allowed me to really see my favorite winter lotion is the Mario Badescu Olive Lotion. All those half used bottles of watery lotions gone. Now my beauty closet is clean and organized. I didn’t have to KonMari (the term used in this endeavor) my perfume because I am so selective about fragrance that I don’t buy anything I don’t love. All my scents have a meaning and a story behind them.

I did a huge cleaning out and donating of books last year so I only buy books I really love like the All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness. Everything else I read through the library which also helps my wallet. If you want to know what all the fuss is about, read this article from The New York Times. I seriously suggest you read this book. If your new year’s resolution of clutter has gone by the wayside try this method. It’s hard. Be prepared to spend most of the day doing it.

“As you put your house in order and decrease your possessions, you’ll see what your true values are, what is really important to you in your life . . . focus instead on choosing the things that inspire joy.” ~ Marie Kondo

Pretty Beauty Radar: CHANEL Beauty Spring 2015 Collection

Chanel Spring 2015 copy

CHANEL Beauty Spring 2015 is on my radar and totally giving me life. I know according to the calendar Spring is coming, but the snow this morning has me willing and chanting it to come sooner. I know it’s winter, but Jesus I need a break. I hate being such a bitter girl and counting down the months until I’m back in Houston. I just really want to wear my Birkenstocks all day so I’m whining like a baby and not a boss.

I’ve been organizing and cleaning out tons of old makeup and beauty products and excited for the new purchases that are going to make their way to the beauty arsenal. I was perusing Neiman Marcus online and stumbled across these beauties. Oh Chanel. You give me so much joy. I’m still wearing my hot pink lip gloss Jalousie from a few years ago so I decided a bold lipstick was what I needed. The collection is pretty and gives me something to look forward to in beauty. My list includes the following

Nails: Desiro
Lips: Rouge Allure in Elusive
Eyes: Paris Woven
Cheeks: Angélique

What makeup are you looking forward to for spring?

Wellness Wednesday: Yoga Download ~ Online Yoga Classes

Yoga Download

Many of you know I’m a yogi and yoga teacher. I am always trying to find new ways to enhance my practice and like to practice at different studios although I have my main studio in DC. Because the weather has been so crazy I decided to try yoga at home via my computer with Yoga Download. There are many online classes and I have decided to try one out every few months to see which one I like the most. First up, Yoga Download.

Yoga Download offers a variety of teachers and a variety of styles.  I will say I have enjoyed practicing with teachers such as Ana Forrest (super hard), Ashtanga, Baptiste, Vinyasa (the style I mainly practice), and more. Classes start at just $10 a month for streaming, but you can pay more if you want to download particular classes to keep forever and can be played without a Wi-Fi connection.

I will admit it felt weird looking at a screen to practice yoga, but after a few times trying the classes I was able to follow along without looking at times. I’m working on lots of strength training through yoga and contemplating getting rid of my gym membership now that the weather is about to get better. I really rather be outside working out.

As with any exercise programing please take it easy. I know we see these glorious mind-blowing yoga poses, but if you aren’t warmed up and listening to your body you can hurt yourself.

Om Pretty!

Pursoma Ocean Potion Bath

Pursoma Ocean Bath

The past few weeks have been pretty cold for me. I love a good bath, but lately my baths have been to warm me up from the cold. Since I’ve been cooped up in the house my eating habits have taken a complete nose dive. All I want in the evenings are deep and rich soups and chowders. Seriously I make a few different ones so every night I can decide which one to eat. I don’t want to go out anywhere. I decided that I needed to detox from all the rich foods and I plan to do that with Pursoma’s Ocean Potion Bath.

Pursoma creates amazing detoxes for the body to aid in outer beauty, but with a strong focus on the inner beauty. These baths are really a game changer in my big girl bath routine. I’ve been studying a lot of natural health routines and baths are an essential part for rejuvenation, detox, and over all well-being. I am always shocked to find so many women don’t take baths. I don’t mean to get clean, but baths to replenish. My holistic team (naturopath, acupuncturist, therapist) all praise baths.

I normally add epsom salts, essential oils, and various foaming bubbles to my bath, but with Pursoma my baths have a purpose. I plan to use them in my detox that I’m starting on March 2 and I know Pursoma will be a big part of my routine.

Jo Malone Cardamom and Moroccan Rose Candle

Jo Malone Candle copy

Jo Malone can do no wrong in my opinion when it comes to their candles. I have a few that I love such as their Dark Amber and Ginger Lily candle, but I was blown away by one of their latest scents. The Jo Malone Cardamom and Moroccan Rose Candle is the latest and I say one of the greatest candle scents from the brand. This scent is perfect for these cold winter days and nights. I know Spring is somewhere around the corner, but right now I can’t find her. I’m drinking lots of hot tea, making various chowders, and reading through a few books that have been on my list. The Neiman Marcus Beauty Event has started and this is going into my basket.

For the last few weeks I have been going back and forth with latest book on editing clearing clutter and editing your life. I will say I have the day scheduled next month to really Kondo my entire life. Stay tuned.

Dr. Weil for Origins Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Advanced Face Serum

Dr. Weil

Are you as tired of the cold as I am? I blame it on that groundhog and that seeing his shadow mess. I’m so ready to move back to Texas where freezing temperatures means it 47 degrees at night and I can get away with a light trench during the day. But what I really miss about the South is the heat and the humidity. Yes, I know humidity makes your hair big, but it is so good for your skin. All that great moisture to make your skin supple. It’s like your personal natural moisturizer. Well, it made mine supple. Now, I’m doing everything in my beauty girl power to get my east coast girl skin to look like my old southern girl skin for the next few wintery weeks.

Most of us know Dr. Weil based on his integrative approach to medicine which I love. But, did you know Dr. Weil has also taken his natural approach to skincare? Since I got back from Louisiana I have been using his Dr. Weil for Origins Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Serum to my daily routine. My face has been soaking up this serum. I am not sleeping well at all, but this makes me look like I am getting eight-plus hours of sleep even though I’m not.

L’Occitane Cleansing and Softening Shower Oil With Almond Oil

Almond Oil

It’s that time of year where my skin starts to look as if I’m bathing in flour unless I hydrate and moisture like crazy. I know there are some things I should do like take lukewarm showers. I just don’t get the point of a lukewarm shower or bath. I want it hot and steamy so when I get in I am almost doing a dance in the water because it’s so hot. Yes, some things I like hot.

It also gives me any and every excuse to rediscover one of my favorite beauty items. I used to live by L’Occitane’s Cleansing and Softening Shower Oil. I don’t know what happened that made me stop using it, but I’m excited to add it back to the arsenal. As much as I love a super sudsy cleanser I realize they don’t work well for me in the winter. My dermatologist would tell me to go easy on anything that suds, but since I need little luxuries in my life at all time I will stick with this. It suds, moisturizes, and feels good. Plus, the scent is great on the mornings when all I want to do is stay deep under the covers.

I know I’m supposed to be all yogic and embrace each day, but winter I am so over you.

Penguin Randomhouse National Readathon: Saturday, January 24

NRD

You guys know I love me some books. Yes, I like big books and I cannot lie. I’m so excited the Penguin Randomhouse National Readathon Day is tomorrow. The goal is to read for four hours and document your reading using the hashtag #TimeToRead. I’m still in Louisiana and plan to join in on the fun during the hours of 12:00pm-4:00pm EST.

Join me on Instagram where I will be using my own personal hashtag #JCbookshelf. I am reading books that take my mind off the fact it’s been two weeks since I lost Jamie and nothing feels right. Absolutely nothing.

Here’s a list of the books I plan to read during this time. Instead of reading one book for four hours I’m breaking it up with four different books each hour. Please join me and let’s celebrate reading together. What are you planning on reading during the readathon?

The Assassin’s Blade: The Throne of Glass Novella by Sarah J. Maas. If Amerie told me to read it then I’m reading it.

Portrait of a Spy by Daniel Silva. I can’t get enough of Silva’s series about an Israeli spy named Gabriel Allon. It’s intriguing, fast paced, and set in some of the most beautiful destinations in the world. Plus, the main character is an art restorer. Go read it.

Tempting Fate by Jane Green. This will be my first Jane Green novel and I am super stoked. A few of my friends love her writing so I’m happy to finally explore her work.

The Magician King by Lev Grossman. I fell in love with The Magicians a few weeks back and let me tell you I can’t get enough. The is the second in a trilogy and I’m plowing through this one as well.

A few of my favorite Penguin/Randomhouse authors are gathered in this video talking about making time to read. I have a few of them on my reading list and on my bookshelves.

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