It’s Independence Day here in the U.S.! It’s a day that admittedly fills me with emotion. I have several military men in my family and I have always loved our history- bring those two together and it instills in me a fierce patriotism and loyalty. While history shows that no country is blemish-free and we face the scars for many years of wrong-doings, we have to celebrate that which makes us united and unique. In the U.S. no three colors say it better than Red, White and Blue.

Clockwise from left: NYX Cottage Cheese, MAC Blue Stripe, MAC Nautical Navy, MAC Red Racer, Burberry Pearl White

You *can* wear the three together without looking overly ridiculous. ;) (to make the navy eye less harsh and more summer-day appropriate I blended some bronze and gold shades in).

Speaking of, Hugh Laurie once made a comment in an interview that I thought was so hilarious and unexpected. The interviewer was asking Hugh if they celebrated Thanksgiving over in England and his response was, “Well, no, I mean we mourn the loss of the colonies so…” LOL!

L-R: China Glaze Bermuda Breakaway, OPI Alpine Snow, Zoya Rekha

This was not the mani I had in mind, but it will have to do. I tried my hardest to do some fancy nail art and after several frustrating attempts I opted to just bling out a nail instead. I mean, when else can I wear blue and red gems on my nails?!

And now, gratuitous fireworks photos taken by yours truly many years before owning a DSLR.

If you celebrate, I hope you have a safe and happy 4th of July! How do I celebrate? By going out on the water and swimming, then a gathering for a BBQ, with the fireworks to round out the night. :)

Dear Olay In Shower Body Lotion:

Y U no come in gallon size? That’s how much I love you. Your rich, creamy texture melts into my skin like butter. Your scent is comforting, like a mix of light soap and shea butter. And you are SO easy to use. Most lotions make me wait several minutes to sink into my skin, but not you, mi preciosa; I can simply rinse you off in the shower. You seem to dive in to my skin and disappear instantly, leaving nothing but a silky smooth feeling as evidence you were once here. If you were ever discontinued I would cry a tub full of crocodile-skin tears. I use you all year round, but in the winter your talents really shine. The best part is that you come for such a bargain price, you little minx. Topping out at a mere $6, there is no budget that can’t afford you. Thank you for making my skin so soft and satiny; I am forever grateful.

02. 01. 2012

I know. New Year’s Resolutions. What’s that saying about pie crust promises? Easily made, easily broken? Yeah, that’s pretty much what resolutions are. Except, I feel like when you write something down you are holding yourself at least slightly more accountable. AND, if you write it down and publish to your blog that’s one step further, right? Ok, so this post is a bit of a larf, but I really do mean to do these things in 2012.

Get Organized Get More Organized Stay Organized

Source Credit: Google

Althought my home still needs a bit more organization, I improved that significantly in 2011. My problem was the staying organized. I need to develop better habits of putting things right back after I use them (makeup, for example). I plan to follow through on this because I am much more relaxed at home when things are in their proper place.

Eat Healthy(er)

Source Credit: Google

Another area I firmly improved on in 2011, but want to kick up several notches in 2012; eating fresh whenever I can and venturing out in to more and more recipes and things that I haven’t tried. I was more adventurous than ever this past year in the food arena, and hope to be even more so this year. I added a strict work out regime this year that I (mostly) faithfully followed. We have several pieces of workout equipment in our home, so there is no excuse to NOT do it anymore (like it’s too cold so I don’t want to drive to the gym-actual excuse I used before).

I think what will help is planning meals out better in advance. I have a notebook dedicated and plan to do this every week. Another thing food related: don’t buy too much in advance. I feel like I wasted more food than I should have this year by buying the food well before I needed to make something, froze it and then forgot I had it and it ended up with frost all over. No more of that!

Return my Netflix discs more than once every 30 days (sad truth: one of the discs I have had now for almost two months. Waste of money!!!)

Be smarter less impulsive with my makeup purchases

Just one of my blush drawers.... -__-

The sad truth is that I have too much makeup, and I say that tongue in cheek because can a makeup lover really have too much? I don’t know, but I do know that if I thought about purchases more I wouldn’t end up with shades that look EXACTLY the same on the cheek (ok, maybe not in a swatch but on the face I bet the difference is slight, if any). The same goes for eyeshadows, lipsticks, etc. I see a pretty shade and I instantly think, “oooh, I MUST HAVE THAT.” When instead I should be thinking, “OOOh, what do I have that’s similar?” I will try to see things in person whenever possible, because that usually deters me from purchasing something that I don’t really need. In summary, I plan to make my purchases count more and only pick up things that are excellent, and nothing less. Because as a makeup collection grows, the margin of acceptability for the mediocre is slim to none. At this stage of the game I am familiar with what I like, know what I don’t like and need to stick with my gut instinct.

Join a Charitable Cause

Because I want to be part of something bigger than myself. I feel like I will gravitate towards the Humane Society because of my love for animals, or Habitat for Humanity because I love hands-on work. I have previously volunteered in my community but would like something more permanent. It’s win-win the way I look at it.

Travel More, and Often

I was lucky to go on a few trips last year, noteably to New Orleans and I am going back in March. My dream trip of 2012? Argentina or Southeast Asia. Remains to be seen what will happen. :)

The beach I was on 1 year ago this week! :) (Florida!)

Did you make any resolutions this year? I would love to hear them!

For the better part of 1.5 years I have been eying up one nail polish that I have never been able to find in stores. It’s available pretty easily online, but I always wanted to see it in person to make sure it was something I really wanted, and that it didn’t look like something I already had. Finally, at a recent trip to Ulta, I was united at last with this long time lemming. United and yes, it feels so good.

OPI Mrs. O'Leary's BBQ

I will freely admit that this polish isn’t BAM- POW, WOW. What the name and color impart on my tips is what makes this color something I will treasure.  Mrs. O’Leary’s BBQ. First of all, it reminds me of something southern (U.S. that is). I have a huge passion for the south and southern living. My family didn’t always live in the cold north (although I always have). My roots belong to the south and I think that’s probably why I love so much about the culture and food from down there. And then there’s BBQ. My, how I love BBQ. Barbeque ribs, chicken and the sauce…I will push people out of the way for some of the home made stuff. On my tips this reminds me of a finger-lickin’ good time, of my childhood and southern hospitality. And yes, I think southern hospitality is alive and well and something you have to experience for yourself to know what I mean.

OPI Mrs. O'Leary's BBQ

I am certain not everyone will have the same reaction I have when I look at this polish. But I can say for certain that I am happy I finally fulfilled my lemming for this and will happily wear it often. Although, now I am pretty hungry….

09. 08. 2011

I saw this fun TAG post over at My Funny Valentine and decided I wanted to give it a go. I always like reading things about the bloggers behind the blogs I read :) and hopefully, you do too!

Top 5 Beverages

(Honorable Mentions: Pink Lemonade, Margaritas)

Top 5 Snacks

Image Credit: Cookingontheside.com

Honorable Mention: Bananas (I freakin’ love bananas and I am never without some at my house)

Top 5 Books

Honorable Mention: To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee (one of my favorite childhood novels)

Top 5 Musicians/Bands/Composers/Scores

Honorable Mentions: Rihanna, Janet Jackson, Keb’Mo’

Top 5 Movies

Sleeping Beauty is a Disney Production under copyright

Honorable Mentions: The Blind Side, Cold Mountain, The Pirates movies, Rumor Has It, You’ve Got Mail, Morning Glory, Troy and Avatar

I tag anyone who wants to do this! :) I think I will do more Top 5 TAG posts in the future featuring 5 more of my top 5s! It is so much fun!