Recap



1. What was the single best thing that happened this past year?
This December Disney Trip!

2. What was the single most challenging thing that happened?
What happened in Seattle right before I left. There was so much already going on in my life that I just wasn't sure if I would be able to handle it and I haven't had any flashbacks, episodes, or rants. I know I am truly blessed for that.

3. What was an unexpected joy this past year?
Making new friends that have already showed that they have my back.

4. What was an unexpected obstacle?
Relationship issues. Family. Romance. Work. Yeah.

5. Pick three words to describe 2013.
Adventurous. Strong. Knowledge.

6. Pick three words your spouse/significant would use to describe your 2013 (don’t ask them; guess based on how you think your spouse sees you).
Strong. Blessed. and Cerain

7. Pick three words your spouse/significant would use to describe their 2010 (again, without asking).
New. Fun. and Lucky

8. What were the best books you read this year?
Hook's Pan, Divergent, and Until You

9. With whom were your most valuable relationships?
Odette, Lisa, Chris, Edwin, Carolina,

10. What was your biggest personal change from January to December of this past year?
Permanently moving away from Seattle.

11. In what way(s) did you grow emotionally?
Emotionally I grow stronger. Realizing that falling apart isn't an option anymore no matter if science tells you or you'll regret it. Pray about it and show people you aren't just a statistics.

12. In what way(s) did you grow spiritually?
God answered my prayers and I learn to that His way is better than my way.

13. In what way(s) did you grow physically?
I have started doing more cardio which helps my heart.

14. In what way(s) did you grow in your relationships with others?
I learned to realize which relationships are actually worth trying for and which ones no matter how hard is just better to let go no matter if it hurts you and them. Letting go hurts but you heal stronger. :)

15. What was the most enjoyable part of your work (both professionally and at home)?
I loved traveling to London for the seminars! As for home I feel like making sure I will build a home that my future family can appreciate and cherish

16. What was the most challenging part of your work (both professionally and at home)?
Home was that family and friends can be challenging to your professional job. Professional challenge was learning new things.

17. What was your single biggest time waster in your life this past year?
Worrying about what other people thought because of their petty comments. And that would be the second time waster is listening to people and their snide comments and worthless opinions.

18. What was the best way you used your time this past year?
Learning and spending time with the ones who really matter in my life.

19. What was biggest thing you learned this past year?
Prayer works. A simple prayer that you ignored the answer the first time. The second time run with it.

20. Create a phrase or statement that describes 2013 for you.
Let It Go.... and Let God.



Fur Babies

I decided to share about my fur babies before doing their Christmas Haul. I hope this helps you understand my darlings!

1. What is your pets name?
Theo, London, Adi, and Pi

2. What kind of pet is it and what breed?
Theo is a Snoodle (Poodle and Schnauzer), London is a full blooded (Harry Potter much?) Bichon Frise, Adi is a deaf exotic long white hair persian cat, and Pi is a calico exotic persian cat. 

3. How long have you had your pet friend?
I have had Theo for almost 3 years. London I got when I returned from... London which was back in August. And the cats I got while coming back from Disney in September!

4. How did you get your pet?
Theo was a Easter present from my Aunt Charlene. London was a congratulation gift from Erica. And my cats I bought for myself. 

5. How old is your pet?
Theo is almost 3. London is almost 6 months and the cats are just 2 months!

6. What are some quirky things about your pets personality?
Both my dogs get a shower with me everyday. Yes I blow dry them as well. I have pics to prove it. Adi is deaf so she croaks sometimes. Pi is just into everything.

7. What does your relationship with your pet mean to you?
Theo and I seriously understand each other. London and I collide because we are both divas. :) Me and the cats get along great.

8. What are some of your favorite past times with your pet?
Theo and I love walking to Starbucks for a pupcuccino. London and I love going into the doggy boutiques. The cats have been loving me curled up in the cashmere blanket while reading (Theo loves this too.) 

9. What are nicknames that you call your pet?
None really Londy maybe, Theo gets called butthead, woofers, etc. And the cats get called together ADPi :D


December ❄ Favorites!

Music:

Kelly Clarkson's  Wrapped in Red - Underneath the Tree was probably the most played Christmas song around me this year. I also like the album song, Wrapped in Red. Winter Dreams was wonderful as well. I really loved this album. It will be a favorite during the holidays for years to come.

Duck Commander's Duck the Halls - Of course my favorite song was the one with Luke Bryan, Hairy Christmas! We listened to this song on the way to Disney World, during Disney World, and on the way back. Totally love the Robertson's hands down. I also love their version of Away in a Manger, it just brought a simple calming peace and really reminded you of what Christmas was all about.

And........

Disney's Frozen The Original Soundtrack - My future stepdaughter and I have run this album into the ground! She and I get tickled when Vin is cooking and he is singing Let It Go.  That is our favorite song. We sing it all the time. We love the movie but we seriously just love this song. We also really love For the First Time In Forever (Reprise)  Fixer Upper, and Do You Want to Build a Snowman. So it's safe to say the day that the movie hits Blu-Ray and DVD we have pre-ordered ours.


Teeth:

Listerine Whitening Rinse in Vibrant - I can seriously tell a difference in my teeth with using this product. 

Medical-ish

So I have had this weird like "cold" ever since we got back from Disney World. I am highly obsessed with looking on Etsy these days.

BrigantiaHerbals Etsy Shop Sore Throat Soother - Herb Infused Honey - This has been amazing at night when the coughing starts in.

BrigantiaHerbals Etsy Shop Chesty Decongestant Salve - Great alternative to Vicks. This is feels so much smoother than Vicks.

EmeraldHollow Etsy Shop Sinus Relief Bath Bombs - Smells great! Really helps before going to bed at night when it seems like colds get worse. Plus they added a special surprise when I ordered these!

MUST HAVE PRODUCT BELOW!!!
I cannot LIVE without this being in my purse, in my house, and in my office....
CVS is the ONLY place I can find this product and it is Nostrilla
I am not kidding. You can have the worst stopped up nose and this stuff will relieve it in 5 minutes at the longest! I love it and seriously cannot live without it. 

Bandaid Blister Stick - I love this stuff. I do not go to Disney World without it! I literally can wear new shoes and not get blisters while walking 10 miles straight! 

Skincare

Lush's Santa's Lip Scrub - Gasp! Yes for December I have put my Popcorn scrub on the shelf! This gives me smooth lips for a perfect pout when putting on lipstick. It tastes like cola.

Soft Coeur  The Honeymooner - This is an amazing massage bar. It smells like chocolate, and yes it has cocoa in it too. It feels so divine but be careful because from what we hear if you leave it in the bed it can leave brown streaks.

Michael Todd's Blue Green Algae Toner - This smells good. I love knowing that it's Anti-bacteria. Especially in the morning when I first get up and I wipe this over my face. 

Fortune Cookie Soap's Hand Santizer in Oogie Boogie OCD - This smells so good. At first I thought FCS had put alcohol in their hand santizer but it was just the smell AT FIRST! It doesn't have alcohol in it and the smell goes away and leaves and gorgeous berry scent.

Bath & Shower

Lush's Fizzbanger - I have gone through more of these this month than I care to admit... This is my all time favorite Bath Bomb (Ballistic). I seriously could just sniff this all day and I actually can since I have the perfume from Lush (That's Love Gorilla Perfume). It has the perfect combination of apple, cinnamon, and toffee. Warning many Lush products have surprises at the center of their products so use a recycled nylon stocking if you don't want bits floating around in the water.

Lush's Magic Wand Snow Fairy - Almost makes you want to eat it because it smells like confectionery heaven! The bubbles that arise from the water smell incredible.

Bath & Body Works Vanilla Bean Noelle Body Wash - For years and years, literally think 2003 I have been using the lotion of this scent and when I seen it was in body wash form I had to get it!

Hair

Lush's Big Shampoo - Real salt, real good smell, real freaking good clean! Not even joking this stuff is Amazing. My boyfriend and I have actually been fighting over this shampoo. It takes away the oil like magic! 

Redken Body Full Light Conditioner - It smells really good, and it is light! It really doesn't weigh down my hair at all! I put a layer of this on before Lush's Big so the ends don't dry out. And I finish up with another coat of it and rinse before getting out of the shower.

Food

Yup, it's mine and Vin's favorite! Sea Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate! This tastes just like the one we got at the IHOP!

Popchips in Chili Lime flavored! These are soooo good.

Make-Up

Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional Agent Zero Shine-Vanishing PRO Powder - This magically shrinks pores! It isn't a cream, it's a powder that shrinks pores and you use it on top and/or under foundation. It is amazing. This will go down as a favorite for me!

Diorshow Maximizer Lash Plumping Serum - I have been putting this on before I put on any make up and let it dry while I am doing my make up and my mascara has been much bolder and longer lasting. I also have started putting it on at night before I go to bed.

Wet N Wild Nutty Eyeshadow - I have just been loving this as a throw it on all over cover. 

Nails 

L'Oréal Colour Riche Gold Dust Textured Nail Polish in Sexy and Sequins - Purple with silver and gold specks.

Julep's Molly - Minne Mouse Red



Candle

Clothing-

Only one item of clothing that I have been obsessed with throughout the month....
Danskin Now Women's Colored Ankle Leggings
I do not know why I prefer these. I just love lounging in them with a gigantic sweatshirt.  They are steal from Walmart! Mine are black with a bold hot pink at the top!

Books

A Family Advent: Keeping the Savior in the Season - Vince and I really enjoyed sharing this book with Rain. Each day there was something to read for the Advent season and it had new traditions and fun trivia.

❄ Christmas Day/Haul 2013 ❄

This had to be the best Christmas I ever had the good fortune to experience except maybe my freshman year of college but that's a different story. I am not trying to brag in this post. I was asked by several people to do the post. If you feel like I am offending your or you don't think I actually got everything on this list, I'm sorry you feel that way.

Christmas presents actually started getting opened on Christmas Eve at my friend Gene's house.

I will go in order of what day I got them.

Soooo Vince and I are walking in Genevieve's backyard which is part fairy garden and part play area for the kids. He suddenly pulls me to swing and sits me down and pulls out a box and says, "I'm not proposing, but I will some day." Inside the box was a beautiful snowflake ring. I will link it because we are having to have it resized. So HERE it is for now until I can post a picture. It has a diamond center, London Blue Topaz as the first accent stones, and then blue topaz as the second accent stones. I love how he customized it so it would look like it was from Frozen!

Gene's family in her house got me two Thomas Kinkade pictures.
Which will go into my living room.

Which will go in my hallway from the kitchen to the dining room.

Another friend's household presented me with a pair of dangling Alabama earrings. Coming from this household, it was a novelty because all but the husband are LSU fans. So I was very happy to receive these! They also got me a gift card to Cracker Barrel 


Another one of my best friends, Ridge, they made me custom tea cups from All Fire Up! You go in to the store paint whatever ceramic they have then they fire them up for you. Her household also got me a Lush's Christmas Candy Box.

Ridge's older sister's household gave me a vase from Jonathan Adler found HERE. They also gave me a personalized pet door mat that says "Hunter's Daily Agenda: Let Theo Out. Let Theo In. Let Theo Out. Let Theo In."
Ridge's little sister's, Courtney, household got me a Hershey's Syrup Chocolate Scented Candle and a Sephora gift card.

Ridge's twin's, Bre, household gave me a Belk gift card and Jo Malone Candle in Orange Blossom

Odette another one of my best friends and her fiance got me some amazing gifts. They got me a Pottery Barn Stag DecanterMason Jar Dual Drink Dispensers with Stand, Coffee table book Kate Spade Things We Love, Bomber Betty Cosmetics, some Sugarpill eyeshadows and as a gag gift from her fiance he got me a Bathroom Guest Book.. He also got me Lush, Amazon, Starbucks, and Sephora gift cards. 
Bomber Betty Cosmetic collection:
Sugarpill Cosmetics:

Jennifer and Clint (my neighbor's) got me a Gabriella 2-Tier Platter Stand in white from Pottery Barn and an Ulta gift card.

Manson (friend and my boss's son) got me Game of Thrones Season 1 & 2 and 2 Quirky Pivot Power strips!

Elle & David (Cousin & her husband) got me Charlotte Ford's Guide to Modern Manners, a signed copy of Emily Post's Etiquette, Harrod's gift card. 

Lillian (cousin) - got me a gift card to Target and Forever 21. She also got me Bendel's shoe bag set because she knows how picky I am when it comes to traveling.

Hannah & Scott (friend and her fiance) got me 4 Stoneware TV Dinner Trays, and also a Bark Cheese Board.

Nathaniel (friend) got me a FitKit! I am so excited about this because it is TSA approved which means I can stay lean and mean in London or cruises! He knows I love to travel so he also got me a Gogo pillow!

Noelle & Luke (friend and her husband) got me a Lilly Pulitzer gift card. Noelle was in a sorority so she knows all about Lilly like I do.

Torsten & Susan (Vin's cousin and his wife) got me a  Teavana gift card.

Maddy & Tristen (Vin's cousin and his wife) got me a Bath & Body Works gift card.

Travis & Bridgitte (Vin's brother and his wife) got me a book that is sooo interesting! I have been reading with it every night including Christmas! It's called Divergent!

Julie (my sorority sister), she got me a very travel jewelry box in cheetah.

Kayleigha (my cousin), got me cookie cutters; Giant Valentine Cookie Cutter Heart with Cutouts, Princess Cookie Cutters Set and a Safari Cookie Cutters Set

Jameson & Violette (friends) got me a gift card to Chikfila!

Claudette & Christian (friends) got me a Disney giftcard!

Hollister & Natalie(friends) got me coffee table book of Disney! It's called One Day at Disney. They also got me the ship chandelier for my foyer. He is the guy that has been building my house so he knew how badly I wanted this chandelier!

Elizabeth & Ben (friends) got me some really unique gifts knowing I'm fixing to be a homeowner. First is this rolling gardening chair. Then a marble rolling pin, a maple salt boxglass domed cake plate/punch bowl, and a fire extinguisher.

Constance (friends) got me this awesome book Tea Party: 20 Themed Tea Parties with Recipes for Every Occasion, from Fabulous Showers to Intimate Gatherings and a Teavana giftcard.

Paulette (coworker) got me this awesome clock!

Greg & Claire (friends) a Scentsy bars.

Glitter & Brandyn (neighbors) got me Benefit Cosmetics Primping with the Stars!

Riley & Derek (friends) got me a Hickory Farm's box!


I would like to take the time to mention three gifts that were given to me before Christmas break.
Madame (my boss) gave me a Henri Bendel snowglobe, Henri Bendel candles in: Chai, Sugarplum, Cedar, Biscotti, and Firewood. She also got me a tea cup set from Bendel's as well. And a gift card to there as well.

Ariel (my UK friend) got me the Urban Decay Mother Lode palette. Haha like you can call that a palette.



Lisa (wedding planner & friend) got me a Lush gift card, Bridal magazines, and eberjey giselle short sleeve pajama set.

Mary Ann & Frankie (my cousin and her fiance) - 
Michael Kors Bead Stretch Bracelet, Rose Golden

Gift Card Section:

Pottery Barn
Cracker Barrel
Lush
Forever 21
Target
Sephora
Ulta
Disney
Belk
iTunes
American Eagle
Container Store
Teavana
PF Changs
Chikfila
Starbucks
Victoria's Secret
Oyster
Amazon
Bath and Body Works
Harrods
Henri Bendel's

I spent Christmas morning at Vin's.




My Stocking at Vin's
Chip & Dale Mickey Head Cheddar Bites
Moleskin Tea Journal
Minnie Mouse Bow Disney Phone Cover (Photo below)
Lindt Chocolate Bear
Lindt Chocolate Truffles bag
Minnie Mouse Pens
Bath & Body Works Travel size Aromatherapy in Energy
Bath & Body Works Socks
AND.....
Anastasia Music Box from the movie Anastasia!!!!! (Photo below phone case)



Vin got me:

Gift cards
Alpha Delta Pi Sorority Sterling Silver Barrel Bead These are for my Pandora Bracelet
Sterling Silver and Enamel University of Alabama Houndstooth Charm Bead Same with this one
Kiss My Lips - Red Enamel & SwarovskiThis Pandora bead charm he got because he gave me my first ever kiss!
And canvas picture of him, Rain and me at Disney World.

A huge Lush collection! But he said he would be using it too so yeah!!! 

Bless his heart he knew I used make-up like crazy so he pretty much bought the MAC store lol.

He also got The Balm cosmetics for me. Not pictured is BalmJovi, and some skincare stuff from TheBalm!



Rain got me:





At My Dad's House:


My Stocking at Dad's
Dior Creme De Rose Lip Balm
Women's Axe Spray
Mickey Head Rice Krispies pops
Chocolate Orange
Mae Movement Bracelet set
Josie Maran Nail Wipes in Peppermint
Sliquid Organics Balance Splash Gentle Feminine Wash Honeydew Cucumber (I'm pretty sure my soon to-be stepmom got me this and not my dad) The reason she got me this was I wanted an organic one instead of Summer's Eve.
Alite Cloverware Lite

Dad gave me:
Gifts cards
Pure Komachi 2 Series 9-Piece Knife Set with Block
Duck Commander Devotional in Pink
Pretty in Pink but Dangerous in Camo Tank
Gander Mtn Gift Card
Duck Commander Hat


Momma Charlene (she's my mom's sister but she is marrying my dad) gave me:
Gift cards
Downton Abbey Shortbread Cookies
Dowton Abbey Tea
Music Headband
EverNote Smart Notebook
Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust
Windsor Bone China Tea Set

Bryant (my little middle brother) got me:
First of all, this little guy has been through heck and back. He gave me the sweetest card which made me cry because he thanked me for saving his life knowing I hate needles. Then he gave me a picture frame, personalized puzzle, and Elsa coffee mug

George (my littlest brother) gave me:
Zippo Hand Warmer in Camo

Garth (oldest little brother) got me:
LeSportsac Minnie Tote

Emily (my new sister in-law) got me:
h2o Skincare: Eye make up remover, toner, and cleansing water

Carolina (Cousin/Best friend) got me:
Sigma Essential Brushes

Carolina also got me the Dry N Shape, MAC Brush Cleanser, 4 boxes of Kleenex Hand Towels, DIY coffee cup she made herself, Teavana gift card, and Victoria Secret gift card.


Edwin (best child hood friend now dating my cousin) got me some more Pandora charms:
Belle - Rose
Tinkerbell
British Cuppa

My cousin Georgia got me some pajama pants from J. Crew! These feel amazing!
Pajama Pants in Navy Plaid Flannel

Cousin Texas went off of his sister:
Isotoner Slippers without fur

The rest of Uncle Mick's kids got me a slew of Yankee Candles:
Man TownMango Peach SalsaRed VelvetButtercreamCinnamon StickCampfire Treat, and Mountain Lodge

Cousin Missy got me:
See Jane Work Gift Certificate (and trust me it does not qualify as a gift card because this came to wrapped up!)

My aunt Meredith& her husband (who is the one who adopted my mom's quadruplets)
The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

My uncle Matthew got me:

Uncle Mick got me:


Uncle Marshall and his wife gave me:
Container Store Gift Card

Mewmaw:
Pottery Barn gift card

Pawpaw:
Gift cards
Oyster gift card
Nutella and GO! 12 pack

Grandma:
Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade Cool Kids' Cookin
Easy Entertaining at Home
Her and Grandpa together got me another Pottery Barn Gift card.

Aunt Darlene
She lives in Utah (not Eutaw where the rest of my family lives lol) and she sent me this gigantic box knowing I would be at dad's for Christmas.
Mason Jars, Emergency weather radio, glow sticks, and blankets

Aunt Marlene
Bamboo Steamer

My mom:
She gave me a tiny stocking with:
Gift Card
Jouer Sparkle and Pop (She gave me two and then Emily two)
Ferrero Rocher Fine Hazelnut Chocolate
Travolo
Vitamelts for Hair, Nails, Skin and Sleep

And presents
Baggallini Luggage Clever Currency And Passport OrganizerCandles, Bath Bombs, bath salts, Whipped soap and Bubble bars from Victoria:
Alabama Slamma, Baked Apple Strudel, Nutella, Christmas in Who-VilleBreaking DawnBella SwanBarn Wood, Bathtime with PoohWatermelon & Lime, Barefoot in Blue JeansBanana, Poison Apple, Pink NoelCold December NightCoppertoneDKNY DeliciousEdward CullenGeisha, Log CabinMahoganyApple Cinnamon ButterApple Jack n Orange Peel and Between the Sheets



Yes I do get a lot for Christmas because my family goes all out and so do my friends. We actually stick by each other's side making sure everyone is ok and well taken care.

Beauty Vlogs and Blogs That I Follow


These are my favorite YouTubers. I am subscribed to all of these and I believe that you should be too!

Just click their names and if they have a second channel I have provided that as well! Enjoy!

Lisa Eldridge (She is my favorite! Hint she has done Emma Watson's make up!)


Casey Holmes - She has amazing reviews! Her second channel can be located HERE!


Eleventh Gorgeous - From Tuscaloosa (Whoop whoop!) and love drugstore make- up. Their other channel is located HERE.


Elle Fowler - She has amazing tutorials and amazing decor. Her other channel is Here.


Kandee Johnson - Lots of information and tutorials. Her second channel is found Here.



Leighann Says - She is hilarious and does a fantastic job doing reviews and such!




Life with Evelina - She has beauty and life ideas!



LisaFreemontStreet - Pin up mood? She is my go to person for old school ideas or pin up sexy ways of doing something!



Ingrid Nilsen - Ok she is like my all time favorite YouTuber, EVER! If she did a daily vlog I would watch. I have been mid sentence and get the email saying she has uploaded a video and I shut up. She has everything from hauls, tutorials, vlogmas, DIY, etc. Her second channel (which is equally as awesome as the first) is found HERE!!!


Polished - Youtubers come together to create fashion videos.


Louise Pentland - One of my favorite UK YouTubers! Baby Darcy is sooooo cute! Beauty and Baby things! Her second channel is found HERE!

Talk Becky Talk - Awesome tutorials, hauls, vlogging, tags. She is also from the UK (Yes my London obsession even affect my YouTube Make up Gurus!)


The Busy Bee Buzz - Probably my third favorite YouTuber! She does organization on her other channel. Her dog has her own blog. This channel is all about the make up! Her other channels are here and here.


Zoe Sugg - My SECOND favorite YouTuber! She is from the UK and just freaking awesome! She loves her friends and her family and it really shows! Her second channel is HERE!!


Carli Bybel - Amazing tutorials, great fashion advice as well. Her second channel is here.



AndreasChoice - Vlogging and beauty!

Anna Saccone - She has pregnancy videos and wonderful beauty vlogs!

Bethany Mota - Awesome lookbooks and hauls!

Nikki Phillippi - She has soooo many tag videos and reviews that it isn't funny. Plus check out her Pinterest which is just awesome! She also does some amazing health and fitness videos!
Tanya Burr -  Another YouTuber from UK! She has all kinds of video from food, health, hauls, and favorites.


Tati  - Another one of my favorites! She does many walk through videos as well as tag videos and colab videos!


Lauren Elizabeth - Amazing style ideas and fabulous make up tutorials!



Allie Marie Evans - She amazing tutorials and lookbooks styles!




Beauty and the Boutique - She is wonderful to watch. My aunt loves watching her videos!





Chloe Morello - She has amazing tutorials and reviews!



Tailia - A cover girl for CoverGirl. She was inspiration for kids with cancer and girls of all ages. (Though no longer will be updating since she passed away)




Emily Noel - She does A LOT of drugstore make up reviews! Her vlog channel is HERE!



Kayleigh Noelle - She has a ton of hairstyles and make up tutorials!
There are more, I am sure, but these I love to watch!

Blogs~

The Beauty Department

This That Beauty

NYC Pretty

Miss Whoever You Are

Beauty Sweet Spot

Fashion Pulse Daily

Martinis and Mascara

Cult of Pretty

I Covet Thee

The Formula Blog

The Rae Viewer

Beauty by Arielle

Maskcara

Temptalia

15 Minute Beauty

The Small Things Blog

Nouveau Cheap

The Beauty of It Is

Dreaming In Blush

Liana Beauty

The Beauty by Bel

Heyyy June

Couture Girl

Amarixe/

A Mom in Red High Heels

Mystical Make-Up and Beauty

Crystal Candy Make-Up

Spa Travel Gal

Make Up Minutes

Vivianna Does Make-Up

Into the Gloss

No More Dirty Looks


These are the ones on my feedly. I am pretty sure my Google Reader had more and I am in the process of getting them back but enjoy!

Also it has been suggest to turn this list into a page so that I can continue to update it. Please let me know!

Christmas Eve

By the time I post this it will already be Christmas! And for my friend's on the other side of the globe it has been Christmas!

Christmas Eve tonight brought many thoughts to my mind. Vince and I cleaned house before leaving to go to two parties. As we were getting ready Rain wouldn't be still. She wanted to look at all of the decorations in the house. I finally asked her why. "Because they won't be there soon." It made me feel bittersweet. She was right. Houses won't be lit up with 100+ lights. Trees will die and be thrown out. It will feel empty.

I sit here tonight just finish decorating a half dead tree that Vince wanted to turn into something special. An old timey Christmas tree. First, he sawed off an inch of the trunk because he wanted an ornament out of it, "Our First Christmas Tree." Then, he surprised me with a Disney ornament he had bought while we were at Disney for "Our First Christmas Together." The half dead tree has bubble lights on it with a paper chain Vince and I made. We also strung popcorn on some string. It's not what you call a pretty tree, but it is something to look at it. I almost can feel the pride coming from Vince. Is it because the tree looks great? No and he knows it doesn't but he feels like his grandmother who raised is near.

Reflecting on this past year astounds me. The things that happened in my life are such a blessing. Blessings make me think of my Lord and Savior.

Hope. I use this word a lot. It means more to me at Christmas time. One of my favorite quotes about hope is from the Preacher's Wife with Denzel Washington and Whitney Houston: "When you shoot a basketball toward the hoop don't you hope it goes into the net? ... That's all prayer is. Hope." Children tonight are hoping certain gifts are going to be under the tree. Parents are hoping that they got the right toy. My hopes for tomorrow are not that. My hope is that Rain has a smile on her face and knows she is loved. Same goes for my family and Vince. It's my greatest hope. Jesus is where I place my hopes, fears, and dreams.

Peace. Right before school let out for the semester my teacher taught us about having peace in the classroom. She told us that it was very hard for some teachers to have peace in the classroom when the teachers themselves never experience peace. Especially in today's world peace is hard to find, but it is there. People just refuse to embrace it. The dishes can wait, go stare into your Christmas tree and fix your stare on ornament that is lit up by the lights on the tree. The reason why so many people don't experience peace is because they are not really thankful. Being thankful is the first step to finding peace. Teaching a child to be thankful for what they have gives them peace at knowing their needs are met just like ours. I know that God puts peace into our lives when we have a thankful heart. Don't believe me? Go to God with a thankful heart instead of asking for something. Peace will fill you.

Love. John 3:16 comes to mind on Christmas for most people. However, I love the book of Jeremiah and the verse Jeremiah 31:3 comes to my mind.
"The Lord appear to us in the past, saying: ' I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving kindness.'" 
We all have someone we love whether we want to admit it or not. Even the people who are hermits at one point in their life loved someone. God loves us enough to give us so many blessings without even asking for them many times! So when God doesn't answer your prayer with a yes, remember the times he said yes without you even having to ask! At the beginning of the week Vince's cousin's wife had a baby. The wife and the baby were getting all the attention. I simply squeezed Torsten a little harder than I normally would hug someone and told him I was praying for him. His eyes were shining afterwards. Nobody else noticed and that was fine with me. It was a simple gesture with a lot of love behind it. God is love, pure and simple.

Joy. Joy and happiness are not the same thing. Happiness is contentment. Joy is something completely different. You can have a joy during times of trouble. The song Twelve Days of Christmas comes to mind. The song is actually religious. Didn't know that? Well it's true. In England from 1558 until 1829 it was a crime to be Catholic. The song has hidden meanings. A partridge and a pear tree? Jesus. Two turtle doves? Old and New Testament. Three French hens? Faith, hope and love. Four calling birds? The four gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Five golden rings? First five books of the Bible, the Law. Six geese a laying? Six days of creation. Seven swans a swimming? Seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: prophesy, serving, teaching, exhortation, contribution, leadership, and mercy. Also or baptism, Communion, reconciliation, confirmation, marriage, holy orders, and anointing of the sick. It should bring great joy to people that we can worship the Lord without it being a crime. Even though society today is trying to turn it into being a crime.

Tonight I sit here knowing that in a very few hours I will hear tiny footsteps running down stairs. I am know God has a plans for tomorrow, ones that I will treasure for a lifetime! Merry Christmas everyone!



Nashville Haul ~ December 22

I could not take pictures of everything however I am going to link everything! Hope you enjoy!

This began by our room not being ready at the Grand Ole Opry Hotel. Vin asked me did I want to wait and just walk around or did I want to look through some shops? Um I am part girly-girly so shopping we went!

It's funny to both of us because we both know Nashville very well. He lived here in Nashville for four years while going to school at Vandy and I know it because I live in Huntsville and we come up here for organic grocery shopping (Wholefoods and Trader Joe's.)

Our first stop was at Target... Yes I am the girl that can be in a Walmart parking lot and will still drive across town to the Target. Pure and simple. 


Simply Balanced Organic Blue Corn with Flax Seed Tortilla Chips ~ I love these chips. They have a flavor without having to have a dip with them! Plus I love that they are organic instead of like Tostito's. These are my go-to tortilla corn chips.

Archer Farms Cashew Cranberry Almond Blend Trail Mix ~ My blood sugar dips sometimes and I love to have some kind of nuts on hand for the times it does dip. I love that this doesn't have peanuts though.

Archer Farms Original Medium Thick & Chunky Salsa ~ I love this salsa! It reminds me of Chili's salsa but thicker! It's delicious. I can eat the entire jar without thinking about it.

IZZE Sparkling Clementine Juice ~ Vin and I both can put this away! It tastes so good and crisp!

Starbucks Salted Caramel Hot Cocoa Mix
Annie's Homegrown Cheddar Bunnies Crackers ~ I got these for us to snack on during and after the show.

Annie's Homegrown Bunny Graham Friends Honey, Chocolate & Chocolate Chip Crackers  ~ These are a great alternative to Teddy Grams.

Silk Pure Almond Dark Chocolate Almond Milk ~ Because my man has to have his chocolate milk ;)

Kleenex Cool Touch Tissues with Aloe ~ I have a cold at the moment. These are amazing for when your nose refuses to stop running and you just can't catch it. ;)

Kleenex Hand Towels ~ These are a beauty essential to me and so it was a shock to me to realize I had forgot to pack some for this Nashville trip! I use these instead of washcloths, that still house bacteria which can create even more acne no matter what you wash them in, to wash my face.

up & up™ Double Zipper Portion Bags  ~ Since I bought snacks I had to buy some of these. I refuse to just eat snacks out of the box anymore. These even have measures on the side. They are just completely perfect!

Old Spice Fresh Collection Matterhorn Body Wash ~ Vin forgot to bring body wash and refused to use mine or the hotels.

up & up™ Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes ~ YOU HAVE TO GET THE BLUE PACKAGING! These are without a doubt the best make up remover wipes! They say something about being compared to Ponds! These are the best ones! These are the best make up remover wipes!!!

Burt's Bees Acne Solutions Clarifying Toner ~ I have run out of Bioderma in the travel size and really didn't want to 1) Stop by house in Huntsville and 2) Because I didn't want to bring the huge bottle of Bioderma

GL Magazine ~ I used to love this magazine when I was younger so I got it for me and Rain to look at together. 

Que Bella Refreshing Pomgrante Pull Off Mask ~ I just liked to have a mask while traveling.

Ulta is where we headed to next. 

Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Repair CC Cream ~ This is a great CC cream! It even helps with break outs!

Exfoliating Round Cotton Pads ~ I usually buy these at Target from Up & up as well but they didn't have these at Target so I got them at Ulta instead.

The next few products is a brand I discovered on this trip! It reminds me of Soap & Glory!

Love & Toast Hand Cream in Sugar Grapefruit and Mandarin Tea ~ I tested this in the store and I just loved how it smelled and felt on my skin. 

Love & Toast Lip Balm Cherry Lemonade ~ It felt really good on my lips and tastes even better!

Love & Toast Starter Kit ~ It's travel sizes of all their products to try out! I'm super excited about this!

I picked up some nail polish from Revlon to try out....

Revlon Moon Candy in Galactic and Universe ~ Galactic is perfect for Disney's Frozen nails and Universe is great for Harry Potter Gryffindor nails.

Revlon Parfumerie Scented Nail Enamel in Autumn Spice ~ I am still getting used to this. I don't love it near as good as Relvon Moon Candy's Galactic.

S Factor Smoothing Shampoo ~ I had used up my bottle at Disney and went ahead and bought another bottle for travel purposes. It smells sooooo good! This is a must for me!

S Factor Flat Iron Shine Spray ~ I have been using Guardian Angel Flat Iron Balm but I decided to try this for a awhile.

S Factor Smoothing Lusterizer ~ The Tigi products were buy 2 get 1 Free so I decided to try this out as the free item.

Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3-In-1 Foundation ~ I love Revlon's 24 Colorstay but this is a well good contender. Just have to wear moisturizer underneath it!

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Powder Duo ~ Perfect brows I have been using this for over a year! 

Maybelline Great Lash Clear Mascara ~ I use this for my eyebrows so they don't move. 

He actually did let me go to Belk & Sephora afterwards, which to me is amazing!

Belk:

Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional Agent Zero Shine Vanishing  Powder ~ I love this stuff. My pores have seriously vanished when using this!

Clinique Great Skin Home and Away (Skin Types 3 & 4) Skincare Set ~ I want to try this set to see if it does anything with my skin.

Lancôme Bi-Facil Double-Action Eye Makeup Remover ~ I used this last night and I have to say that it might just be better than MAC!

Sephora: 

Shiseido Makeup Facial Cotton ~ I order these online all the time but I was thrilled to find them in store! I was super excited to see them in store! They normally do not have them in store! 

Clinque Acne Solutions Cleansing Face and Body Soap ~ I actually didn't pick this up. This was all Vince. 


Soap & Glory Clean On Me Creamy Moisture Shower Gel ~ Her second pick (she was allowed 3 things) but I have used this before because of my best friend Odette. She uses this religiously. 

Soap & Glory Foam-Call Super Moisture-Suds ~ Her last pick. Rain loves bath things.

NARS Smudge Proof Eye Shadow Primer ~ I cannot find any primer I find to be as good as this except maybe potion Primer from Urban Decay. 

NARS Larger than Life Long Wear Eye Liner in Via Veneto Black ~ My all time favorite go to eye liner.

Stila Countless Color Pigments (I already have 5 of these) I got 2 more. Tie Dye and Acoustic 



Yes I spend a lot of money on make-up and hair care thing is though I have fun doing and I'm not hurting anyone. I had a wonderful day before we went to go see the Rockettes at the Grand Ole Opry.