Lots of news in the world today: Putin is still being the dictator he is and is escalating his crimes upon Ukraine (and most of the rest of the developed world, heaven help us all), there are 200 schoolgirls missing in Nigeria who’ve reportedly been kidnapped and sold into marriage, and on a less-serious-but-still-rather-heavy-for-my-heart-matter, David Beckham is still retired from the game of soccer. Why can’t he pull a Michael Phelps and (allegedly) come out of retirement already?
April has been a long, horrible month, and I’m really ready to move into May wherein there’s hope of a gentler future. I’m an eternal optimist, if nothing else. I haven’t talked about it much (at all) on the blog, but have shared tidbits of what’s going on behind the scenes at my house, over on Instagram, (I’m @petit_elefant).
My 14-year-old daughter has been super, super sick for almost 2 months and no one knows what’s wrong with her. Baby girl has been throwing up dozens of times a day (and sometimes more) for 7 weeks straight but no one seems to be able to fix her. We’ve been to the Emergency Room more times than we can count, and all sorts … >> find out more...
You know what I like more than almost anything else? Accessories. I really, really, rilly love me some accessories, don’t you?
Cool, bold jewelry and accessories can take an outfit from meh to bangin’ in the time it takes to slide each piece onto your hot body. Think about it; if you’re wearing regular jeans and a tee but you throw on a statement necklace and some boss rings, topped off by a cool watch, forget it. Game over, hands down, you win Outfit Wars.
(assuming Outfit Wars are waging across the globe)
I love a good DIY accessory, like these How to Geometric Earrings and this DIY Sequin Bracelet as much as I love this DIY Hardware Bracelet, and I’ve never met a chunky ring I didn’t love immediately. I mean, for heaven’s sake, I hardly enough jewelry storage for all my goodies.
But wood. Have you ever worn wood jewelry? I fell in love with (and purchased a stupid amount of) a bunch of statement rings made entirely out of wood when we went to Costa Rica as a family a couple years ago, and I’ve been buying up wood jewelry as fast as my little hands … >> find out more...
Ask anyone at our house, and they’ll tell you they’d rather be at Walt Disney World eating the ears off a Mickey ice cream bar right about now.
20 trips to our “second home” since 2007 have taught us a few things about making the most of each visit, and for this post, I focused on tips and insider secrets that will make spending a long weekend (Thursday-Sunday) at the parks that much more pixie dusted for your family.
The very best time to visit Walt Disney World is mid-week during the off-season. That’s basically the last two weeks in September through the first two weeks in October. Not only is it still warm and sunny, but the crowds are significantly smaller than in the middle of summer. Bonus: Amazing Halloween decorations.
There are 23 themed hotels on property at Walt Disney World, situated around the four main parks – Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Epcot and Animal Kingdom. Staying at one of these hotels during your visit is a must in my book, since you get a lot more perks.
Obviously, it’s important to consider price and location, but Disney does offer attractive hotel/dining packages throughout the year. Hotels are categorized deluxe, … >> find out more...
In my 20 years of jet setting all over the world, I feel like I’ve learned a thing or two about packing for a trip. From one night overnights to a few months of country hopping during different seasons, I’m pretty sure I could pack a bag with my eyes closed. Ok, maybe not, but nonetheless, here a few essential packing tips that have helped me make the process smoother.
1. Make a list. Some people are natural list makers. Others are not. I’m a list maker. My husband is not. You know what happens every.single.time? He over-packs. Thinking through what you need and don’t need and then writing it down will most certainly help protect you against over-packing. If I’m going on a very long trip, I usually bring enough clothes for 5 days and plan on hitting up a laundry-mat. That’s a personal preference as I tend to like traveling light. Another option is hand-washing in a sink somewhere.
2. Allow room for souvenirs. This might be the most fun of all the packing tips on the list. Chances are you are going collect some things along the way. Make sure there is room in your bag to … >> find out more...
Our community’s outdoor pool opens later this month. Squee! I can hardly wait. We’ll be purchasing our pool pass then hanging out every day to beat the heat and humidity. Of course, the number one thing on my mind is finding a new suit. So, let’s talk about choosing a truly flattering plus size swimsuit.
Each of us has our own challenges with coverage, support and needs in a swimsuit. Let’s cover four basic concerns and what you should look for in each of those cases when it comes to swim wear.
WAIST NOT, WANT NOT
Just as all plus size bodies are not the same, neither should their swimsuits be. Are you lacking on the curves? Wish you had a more defined waist? Easy! The illusion of a waist can be created by choosing a suit with detail at the waist. Look for a belt (fake or real), or bling across the midsection. Instant waist definition!
BUST IT OUT
Are you busty? Well endowed? (Sheepishly raises hand.) You want to create a silhouette that is balanced rather than top heavy. Halter tops are your best friend. They elongate and your body and provide lots of support. Speaking of … >> find out more...
Whenever I’m feeling uninspired in the arts and crafts department, I usually just need to get a little more organized, and dig through my supplies to get a creative jolt. That’s just what I did this week, and in my need of some purging and cleaning, I cam across some old craft supplies that were begging to be used. My watercolors and this fab gold confetti inspired some last-minute Easter decor, and this cute heart art project. I think it’s perfect to hang in a young girl’s room, or to give as a Mother’s Day gift. Whatever the case may be, this gold confetti art project is easy to recreate, and you can easily get young kids involved with the painting and gluing. Here’s how to make your own watercolor and gold confetti masterpiece.Begin by gathering what you’ll need.
Watercolor paper (make sure it’s nice and thick watercolor paper, do not try and use some other type of plain white paper)
Water color brush & brush for Mod Podge
Gold confetti (you could also use gold glitter if you have it. The point is to use what you’ve got, and make it disco sparkle)
Frame … >> find out more...
I thought I’d pop in and share a beauty tutorial with you — the smokey eye. I know it sounds intimidating, especially if you’re not really a makeup kinda gal, but it’s a lot easier than it looks. There are many variations and options you have while creating a smokey eye but today I am going to focus on a very basic version of it. Maybe I’ll get into adding colors and such a bit later.
Let’s get started!
What I used for this look:
- Makeup Primer – I used Smashbox & I love it.
- Naked 2 Palette – however any palette or individual colors of black, smokey grey, light/shimmer grey, and a beige/cream work perfectly.
- Strong black eye liner. I used Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Color in Smoke. Something like this is perfect because it’s not just a liner. You can smudge it out to create that awesome smokey look.
- Mascara. I use Voluminous by L’Oreal. Continues to be my favorite.
- Falsies (optional). No reason to spend a ton on them either, the e.l.f. brand works fabulous for just $1.
Alright, now you’re ready! Let’s get to work on this smokey eye look.
Let’s break this down … >> find out more...
What do you look for in a foundation? Do you look for anything special in a foundation? Do you even wear foundation? A lot of us don’t, and I’m in and out of that camp all the time because I just don’t like the feel of heaviness on my skin. At all. The most I can handle on my face normally is a very lightweight moisturizer and some blush. When it’s a special occasion or I need serious coverage for family photos or a random photo shoot. In my day-to-day life I just don’t like the feel of anything on my skin.
Still, my skin is a train wreck, and I feel a little better covering up some of this mid-30’s hormonal skin nonsense. I’ve been on the lookout for just the right thing for awhile, and today I’m partnering with bareMinerals to share a new liquid foundation with you, called bareSkin, and so far I like it a lot.
It’s pretty important to shake up any liquid foundation before you start applying it because all the mineral and liquid goodness sinks to the bottom of the jar in-between uses. bareSkin® foundation has been 20 years in the making and
… >> find out more...
When Easter is over, as it is about to be, what do you do with all the leftover Easter baskets? In my house growing up, my mom would stash all 10 Easter baskets back under the stairs, grass and all, to wait it out until the following Easter holiday. I’m not quite as organized as my mother, maybe because I’m free to wing it with only 2 kids instead of 8, which means each year is different than the next. More often than not, I forget I even have Easter baskets under my stairs, or I’m lured into buying new ones every year both by the children and myself.
What does one do with all the baskets of the world flowing everywhere? I’ll tell you what I do: after Easter half the time I send them to a thrift store and the other half I re-purpose them into something useful for the remaining 11 months of the year.
This year my little guy (he’s still little to me) is getting an adorable little monster basket filled to the brim with Peeps and chocolate eggs. And when he’s all done using it I’m filling it with toy cars to sit … >> find out more...