My Busy Mom Make-up Routine

Since I’ve become a perpetually tired frazzled mom, my morning makeup routine usually consists of wiping my face with a cold rag and slapping on some moisturizer. It’s the kind of look that needs a good Snapchat filter to make it presentable. But since I’ve started doing beauty product reviews, I’ve had a reason to put in a little extra effort while testing out products, and I really enjoy it. Looking better makes me feel better. I smile more. I say hi to people. I leave the house.

So since putting a little effort into my appearance actually improves my life, but it’s still a very busy life, I’ve managed to whittle it down to a routine that takes less than 10 minutes. I use primer, cover-up, mascara, brow pencil, lip gloss and powder.

Before and After make-up

Here’s what I do:

1. I start with the BECCA Anti-Fatigue Under Eye Primer primer because it does half the becca under eye primerjob for me in one little swipe. I got this as a free sample and now I’m hooked. Sometimes if I’m really in a hurry, I just slap this on under my eyes and go. At $32, it’s a little pricier than my usual make-up, but it makes me look better in five seconds so it’s worth it.

2. I use a super tiny bit of medium coverage make-up under my eyes, on my eye lids and over any spots on my face. I have a scar and some hyper pigmentation from the sun I like to cover.

3. I do a quick little brow fill in with a pencil because mine are skinny and light. You can totally skip this if you already have good brows.

4. Mascara! I feel like mascara really makes a big difference and makes me look more awake. Right now I’m using MAC Zoom Lash in black, but I just checked an it seems they are doing away with this so it’s time for me to find a new mascara.

5. I’m really shiny so I like to put a little BECCA Setting Powder on my shiny spots. Any kind of anti-shine powder will work.

6. Swipe on some tinted gloss and I’m ready to go!

Full disclosure- I brushed my hair too.

I’ve actually kept up with it the past few weeks. I can’t say I do it every single day, but at least 5 our of 7 days now I don’t look like a hot mess. If I’m in a super hurry, I have a two-minute routine that just consists of the primer, mascara and a little dusting of powder.

And then if I have a good two hours and a lot more products, I can do this:

Candy Keane pin-up Marilyn Monroe

*I dressed up the other night to volunteer at a cancer benefit with a Rockabilly Prom theme, so I decided to go all Marilyn for the evening.

Boys Love Dirt

Toddler playing in dirtYesterday I sat watching my son gleefully crash his toy cars into piles of dirt. I got a big wide smile on my face seeing how happy he was digging, building little mountains and destroying them.

He squealed in delight, “Mommy watch!”

Then, as I looked up at him, he threw a giant handful of dirt right in my happy smiling face. The kind of smile that shows teeth. Teeth that were now all crunchy with dirty sand.

*sigh* Boys.

It went all in my hair, on my pants, down my shirt. It was a pretty good throw. Before I morphed into Angry Mommy, I hopped up, shook off the dirt and told him if he’s going to throw stuff at me, then I don’t want to play with him anymore.

I think he took this as a challenge to throw dirt in any other general direction, including wiping it all over himself.

*sigh* again. Boys.

Oh I’m sure there are some dirt loving little girls out there. I know I was one of them. But I’m not sure if I was this committed. And I surely never threw dirt in my mother’s face. But then again, I do recall a lot of time spent playing in the dirt/sand/mud. So maybe this needs to be changed to kids. Kids Love Dirt. Boys, girls, and sometimes even mommies, love dirt. Except in the face.

Nobody loves dirt in the face.

Side Hustle Saturday: Check Your Receipts for Free Stuff

img_9072If you just toss your receipts in the trash without looking at them closely, you could be tossing out free stuff and discounts!

A trend I’ve taken full advantage of is the receipt survey. Usually printed at the bottom of your receipt is a claim code and offer, and all you need to do is go to a website and answer some questions about your visit.

Examples of recent receipt bonuses I’ve claimed: $5 off groceries at Winn-Dixie, Free Chick-fil-A sandwich, Free Whopper at Burger King.

It takes less than 5 minutes and earns you an average of $5-$10 either in discounts or free stuff. It’s totally worth it if you go to that particular place all the time anyway.

So check those receipts! They aren’t always printed on every one. I get one maybe every other visit though, so the odds are pretty good!

* As a side note, I know barely anybody looks at the backs of their receipts because I once tried advertising my boutique on the receipts at Winn-Dixie. I did it for 3 months, with a full color photo and 15% discount on any item in the store. I had one person come in and they didn’t even buy anything! So unfortunately it was a total waste, but it did get me looking at my own receipts at least.

I Sold My Soul for a Free Pillow

sleep number pillowIt’s all fun and games until you turn it into work, and that’s exactly what I did when I signed up for this mission from Smiley360 and Sleep Number. I was having fun, sampling stuff left and right, but high on the prospect of free goodies I took on too much and that was my downfall.

I’m cool with the usual free stuff requirements – a blog or video and a few social shares. Something totally natural that you can work in without bugging people and looking like you totally sold out. And then, lured in by the promise of a free $90 pillow, I accepted the invitation to join the Sleep Number campaign.

Here’s what they want:

  1. Visit a Sleep Number store and get your number
  2. Share a photo to Facebook 4 times
  3. 2 Ad tweets
  4. 4 Photo shares to Twitter
  5. 2 Comments on Smiley360
  6. Report on sharing with 10 people face-to-face
  7. 2 Posts on Pinterest
  8. 2 Posts on Instagram

Visiting the store is quite a time investment for a busy mom. I was lucky they had a little Lego table set-up, but there were moments the toddler was zooming around the store squealing.

But the real killer is the social shares. One Facebook post, OK. People actually paid attention and posted their Sleep Number and it was kinda fun to see. But again and again…I’m probably losing friends and credibility with every post. Most of the time I feel like nobody is paying attention on Twitter so I loaded up my feed with as many tweets as I could.

And then this happened: In my rush to get it done, I tagged CrowdTap instead of Smiley360 and my posts were rejected! So not only did I already bug everybody, but I was going to have to do it AGAIN if I wanted to complete my mission. I had gone this far for the darn pillow, I wasn’t going to let it go, so I did it with an added apology to friends that I had let this happen.

I’m still waiting to see if my last posts were accepted, so fingers crossed. This better be the most wonderful damn pillow in the world. (and maybe I will post a photo of it because I Want to this time)

Getting my number at the Sleep Number store
Now give me my fancy pillow!

Toddlers Don’t Understand Advertising

My son is just getting into building things, so when there was an opportunity to apply for a Strictly Briks Tryabox from Tryazon, I signed up immediately. I figured, I’ve suffered through enough episodes of Ryan’s Toy Review, getting kids to review toys looks easy enough.

So guess who has a new respect for Ryan and his willingness to play with toys and not throw them? Yeah, it’s not that easy.

We were off to a good start with the closed box. Keelan was excited to see what was inside. The high level of excitement continued as we pulled the brightly colored packaged from the box. There were squeals of delight when he spotted the Trap and Gap Baseplates with the pictures of cars on the front. And that’s when everything went downhill.

Strictly Briks Trap and Gap Baseplates

He quickly tore into the box to discover there were no cars to be found. Just tons of tiny building bricks. This was way out of his recommended age range, but there was no stopping him once he saw the box. He did give it his best shot, maybe thinking if he built it, the cars would come.

Toddler building with strictly briks

The entire time I’m trying to convince him to let mommy help build it and we can get cars to go in it. He was having none of it.

I tried to steer him toward the more toddler-appropriate larger Briks and he threw them behind the couch. I then tried to get him to play with any of the other fun looking things Strictly Briks had sent us:

 

He refused to play with anything else and the whole episode ended in one giant meltdown. So I packed everything away to try another day.

IMG_9289

Today he started asking where his new “little blocks” were. 🙄

I’m sure we have plenty of Strictly Briks fun in our future, but for now those little blocks are back in their box until we reach a new milestone of maturity. One that includes not throwing blocks at mommy.