Monday, July 29, 2013

Sunday Coffee Date

The first thing I'd say if we were meeting for a coffee date this week is "I'm sorry for being late", and "thanks for rescheduling" :)

Anyway. This week I've been dealing with all of the things I told you about last week, and slowly getting them taken care off.  Almost there- just one trip to the DMV office that I'm avoiding and last weeks misery will all be in the past. 
This week I've satisfied my urge to be creative again and took up water color painting. This is an entirely new hobby for me and one that is quite surprising!  I took painting 101 in college and never warmed up to the medium, so imagine my confusion when I felt the desire to paint! I think I'm enjoying it now because I can choose my own subject matter and seem to me painting mainly patterns in bright colors. Then I like to go over the dried paint with silver and gold paint markers to make fun details.  

Two really exciting things happened this week. 


First- my parents got an offer on their house. It's been on the market for about two years so this is a gigantic sigh of relief for all of us. Now they can go about making plans and moving forward with their lives. Unfortunately, they settle on August 31st, (yes, as in 33 days from now!)which means I'll be helping out as often as I can to get them ready to move. 

Secondly, wedding shower invitations in my honor arrived! Jacque (future sister in law) and Joe's mom are hosting a family shower here at the house in September and they gave me an invitation. It was a very surreal to see the invitation and I had another "omg I'm getting married?!?!" moment. It's so happy!

We attended a surprise engagement party for Joe's best friend, Ben on Saturday night. Ben proposed to Brittany an hour before the party and surprised his new fiancee with a party full of family and friends who were there to help celebrate! We had a wonderful night with them and I learned the next day that I can no longer drink like I used too. Ughh...

That's about it for us! We're looking forward to a good week with no major plans. Until next time...


Sunday, July 21, 2013

Sunday Coffee Date

Hi everyone!
I've decided to start having a regular blog feature called Sunday Coffee Date.  Each Sunday I'll do a quick re-cap of things that are going on in my life that didn't quite make it into a full post. Basically these posts will be a rambling of the things we would talk about if we were sitting down to a coffee date together in person today. Welcome to our first date :)

(Ps- I completely and shamelessly stole this idea from Jenna who writes the blog Eat, Live, Run. I love her blog, and I love her "virtual coffee dates" so I thought I would try that here in my own space.  So here it goes...

I'm having one of those weeks. A week where unexpectedly things are going really wrong.  It all started with my computer, which as I said before, is being repaired right now (which is good news) however I lost a lot of information in the crash and it is costing $310 to have fixed. (btw- why do I never buy extended warranties??) Then last night we had a serious, fully-shredded tire blowout happen on a major highway at approx 11pm.  We were coming home from a housewarming party and it just sorta...happened.  Thankfully Joe was with me and he is a AAA member so they showed up to help us around 12:30am. We were home by 1 am but I was pretty shaken up.  And this morning I treated myself to a brand new pair of tires which also came with a hefty price tag. (thankfully, no damage to my wheel) The icing on the cake of this whole event was when the state trooper who stopped to see if we were ok while waiting for AAA informed my that my tags are suspended. He couldn't exactly tell me why he just mentioned something about the "addresses the car is registered to",  which makes sense because we are in the process of having the title switched over to my name.  But suspended!!??!!?? Really?! It's the kind of thing I just want to ignore and pretend didn't happen. I know I can't, but I really want too. But hey, at least he didn't give me a ticket right...?

As you can see, I'm really trying to look at the positive side of all the events of the last few days.  Mostly I'm mad about all the money that I've worked so hard to save being used up in such large chunks so quickly. Buy hey, on the positive side of that- at least I have the money....? And, they say that bad things happen in 3's, and that was 3. So, universe, it's time to move on and leave me alone!

The housewarming party we went to last night was for my friend Annie. She and her husband just moved into this amazing, fabulous, straight-out-of-HGTV home, and we finally got to tour it last night.  I'm going to convince her to let me do a house tour photo shoot for you because you wouldn't believe how gorgeous this house is! I am so extremely happy for them and have found their new purchase and adventure very inspiring and motivational. I've even started looking through my decorating books and making notes for the home I hope we own one day, too. 

I'm starting to delve back into wedding planning. We only have a few loose ends to tie up, but the clock is ticking away and I'm ready to tackle the jobs. Less than 5 months now! 

Joe's new work schedule is horrible. We have very little time together until the schedule is changed (every two months), and he's usually home just in time for me to be yawning and crawling into bed.

I treated myself to MAC foundation and concealer last week as well as Laura Mercier illuminator,  and have been absolutely loving all of it.  They were a definite splurge I will definitely be using these on my wedding day! I've already gotten compliments on my makeup while wearing them :) yay!

I am getting extremely excited about our honeymoon. As soon as all the wedding planning is over I will be able to turn my attention to our Italian honeymoon. I can't wait to plan and to travel!

It happened- I finally have the itch to craft again!!! It's been months.  I plan on doing something creative as soon as I'm done with this post and I can't wait to share whatever I end up doing with you. Having the desire to be creative makes me feel like myself again. It's funny because I hadn't realized anything was "off", until I snapped out of it. Does that make sense?  New hobbies I want to take up or continue to explore- painting and stained glass, and photography. I also have a renewed urge to keep working on my needlework business.  (why are there only 24 hours in a day?)

And to end on a sappy note- lately I have been feeling extremely lucky to have such an amazing group of friends and family. More than ever before I feel like I have cut away all the drama and toxicity (we've all had it!) and I'm now left with this incredible group of people who love me for who I truly am, and have supported me through so much. They make me a better person and encourage me to thrive. I really love each and every single one of them and can't wait to support them back and make lots of new memories with them. 


Saturday, July 20, 2013

Computer Melt down

Please excuse my absence. My computer was having some problems/crashed and is being repaired by the MAC geniuses as we speak. I should have it back in a few days. 

Until then posts will be limited but I'll do my best :) You can also find me on pinterest (LMvintage), and instagram- LizMathews83! See you there!

I'll leave you with a beautiful image of a necklace my mom; French Sentiments just listed in her shop. Be sure to stop! 

Hope you are all well and if you're in the north east like us, I hope you haven't melted yet!
Saturday, July 13, 2013

Window Shopping

Today I wandered over to Home Goods in search of a few very specific items.  Even though I quickly located what I was there for I couldn't resist a little self torture. As I wondered down each and every single aisle I snapped photos of the items I would buy if money were no object and I had a whole house to decorate.  Although Home Goods has amazing products, and everything I saw was extremely reasonably priced nothing made it's way home with me.  One day though... I'll be back, and I'll be decorating, and my cart will be full.  

Take a peek at the items I'd have purchased today:  (please excuse the photo quality- all images from my i-phone)
 I truly loved this french themed glass walled jewelry box. The text, the blue shade, the ornamentation....perfection!
 I want to put this settee in a sitting room with loads of fluffy, textural pillows on top. I love the ikat patterning too!
 Could these vases be any sweeter? They remind me of vases Anthropologie carries. Delicate,  fresh, and charming.
 This map canvas was taller than I am. It would make a perfect statement piece for an odd space or man cave. If it were a map of Paris this baby would be at home with me right now. 
 Good attention to details meeting functionality. Beautiful.
 Industrial-sweet. Great juxtaposition. 
LLLLLLOOOOOVVVVVEEE. Almost kicking myself for not buying this. Price tag- $40

There you have it... all of the items that did not actually make it into my cart.  In case you're wondering what did, fear not, I have photos of that too!
I splurged on this small paper covered box. The walls are exceptionally sturdy, it's a charming size, and the paper is luxurious with metallic paint. I'd been looking for some sort of "keep sake" box and for $3.99 the price can't be beat. I've already started filling it up with love notes Joe has given me. 
And the entire reason for the trip- "thank you" notecards. Home Goods always has the best!! I've been stocking up every time I'm in the store. 



At this point I have about 6 card sets from the same line; La Petite Presse.  They are simple and sweet with the gold accents I also loved in the keepsake box. I have a feeling I will be sending out several dozen cards over the following months and I'm someone who likes to give pretty and thoughtful cards. Why not get them at a great price whenever I can find them??


Tuesday, July 9, 2013

July Market Trip

It'd been months since I'd hit the Sunday antique markets in Pennsylvania with my mom.  Understandably, renting a storage unit which currently holds all of our stuff, and living at the in-laws house in their pre-furnished extra bedrooms didn't leave me inspired to decorate. It's been an interesting transition in which I feel (and quite literally did) like I've boxed up all of my decorating ideas, inspiration, and personality and packed them away for the foreseeable future. Buying more items just to be put into storage right away or moved again shortly seems a little insane.  But never the less, I do miss the thrill of the flea markets and the hunt for treasures,  so when I shot mom a text that said "antiquing this sunday?", she gladly accepted the invitation and we planned our (extremely) early meet up to go hunt and scavenge for treasures. 
Fresh, local produce at a farmers stand that poped up at the flea market- beautiful onions!
We had a fabulous day and I hadn't realized I'd missed the market trips as much as I did.  I was also happy to discover that I didn't actually need to be buying things to enjoy the shopping. Not to imply that I didn't buy anything. Because I did :)
Ladder stands approx. 6.5 feet tall x 1.5 feet wide
I spent a whopping $10 (talked the guy down from $12) on this old, weathered ladder. Yes, it will go into storage right away, but I couldn't resist. I'd been wanting one for quite some time with visions of propping it against our future living room wall and draping our blankets and throws over the rungs.  I especially love this ladder because it has an old metal pulley attached to the top rung. Love!
Inspiration:




I spent $30 on more glass vases and bowls with the intentions of applying the DIY mercury glass finish to them. We had amazing success with the glass pieces Joe and I already collected and I knew I wanted to make more- for both the wedding and personal decorating. (more on that later) For $30 we found about 12 pieces of glass. Not a bad average price!
What treasures have you found lately? 



Friday, July 5, 2013

Miniatures

Lately my interest in beauty and make up products has been re-sparked with the ferocity of a 17 year old girl. While it is an unusual  interest for me I've really enjoyed the confidence that it has brought to my life. I'd gotten into a comfort zone of laziness and ambivalence and it was nice to break out of that rut.  And, I do recognize that I may go around looking like a make-up application novice, or the occasional clown some days, but honestly- I don't really care. It makes me feel really good to spend time on myself, and to put the effort into trying to appear "put together" and beautiful. It makes me feel pretty and confident, and I know for a fact there is nothing more attractive than a girl who feels that way from the inside out. So there! :)

This new interest started with the discovery of Jaclyn Hill's youtube videos through Pinterest and snowballed from there. Through the videos of Jaclyn, Nicole, and Ellie I've learned everything from skin and body care to how to apply cat-eye style eye liner and everything in between. All of their videos are fun to watch and give you step-by-step directions on various different looks. I've spent hours watching dozens of them then trying to recreate the looks I've seen them achieve. 

Needless to say, I now have a beauty "wish list" a mile long. These girls use A LOT of products, and they are often not cheap and mostly unavailable in drugstores.  I am more than willing to buy a higher priced item if I KNOW it will work exactly the way I want, but I am not willing to take chances with that. I can't stand looking at something and knowing a threw money away to get it and will probably never use it or even like it. 

Enter sample kits. 

I love, love, love the sample kits I've been finding at local beauty supply stores. They are an awesome way to sample a collection of products for a fraction of the price. I picked the two sample packs you see here up over the last two week-the Josie Maran package came from Sephora, and the Benefits from Ulta. As you can see, they each cost $24 dollars, and offer a sampling of the best sellers. 

I'd heard the beauty guru's raving about Josie Maran products since I started watching the youtube videos and really wanted to try them. They are made of pure Argon Oil which is supposed to be really good for you skin, but left me a little hesitant. Put pure oil on your face = 100% chance of breakouts. After doing a little research and some convincing from Jaclyn I thought I'd give it a try. 
But woah- when I got to the stores I learned the prices for these products are steep!! Like, really steep. Again, if they work like I've been told then great, they'd be worth every penny. But unless I know for sure I'm not willing to spend the money. Call me cheep if you must, but I prefer "thrifty".  That's when I found the sample pack you saw above, which happened to cost less than even one full sized bottle of any of the products included and happened to have the exact items I had come into the store for. I snatched up the last package on the shelf and headed to check out! 

The verdict is still out on these Argon Oil products. Because I have combination/oily skin to start with I've learned that it's best if i only use them at night otherwise I feel a bit too greasy throughout the day. I've also had a few breakout that I can't help but be suspicious about. However, my skin has never felt softer before. It is seriously smooth and silky which is really nice but I'm not sure I would recommend these products to a friend unless they were dry. I'll keep using them and let you know if anything changes :)

Next, there was the Benefits sample package. With six products included for $24 I scooped this up quickly too! The items I was most excited for were the Hoola bronzer, Bad Gal Lash mascara, and the High Beam highlighter. The rest of the products were just a happy bonus if you ask me! Again, the price tags on these individual items are usually around or over $24 so this was a great way for me to try them out.  Did I mention how cute these miniature items are...just adorable! But they also provide enough product to use for at least a week. I also picked up a miniature version of the They're Real mascara by benefit because I've heard everyone rave about it, and wanted to see for myself if it's as good as they say it is without spending $23!!! (another YAY for sample sizes!)
The verdicts on these products are a little more positive. Run, don't walk to pick up your own They're Real mascara. Start with the sample bottle, but know that you will be returning for the full sized bottle. It's amazing.   I suspect I'll also be repurchasing the Hoola bronzer and the Posie Tint lip and cheek stain. The Posie Tint was a real surprise  but I've come to love it and it's something I never would have discovered if it we're for this amazing little package!

I look forward to discovering lots of new products this way, and promise to keep on sharing my experiences and recommendations with you :) 

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