Friday, September 27, 2013

Who are you, really?

I found this link to a personality test via Story of My Life which I happened upon thanks to Incredibly Smitten.  Jenny from Incredibly Smitten is doing the Blogtember challenge and I am totally digging all the amazing blog post ideas coming out of that challenge.  I love how it encourages you to think outside the blogging box. Any who, back to this personality test.

The 72 question Personality Quiz can be found here and it is definitely worth taking! Once completed I couldn't believe how accurate my results were. 


It notified me that I am an INFJ (Introvert, iNtuitive, Feeling, Judging). It even listed at the bottom of my results famous people that also share the same personality trait.  I was shocked to see Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King Jr., and Nicole Kidman all shared similar personalities with me (um, WOW).  The results summed up that I am very much an introvert but an introvert that is very good at listening and sympathizing with others.  It also explained that because I can interact well with others, people may confuse me for an extrovert.  That piece I found very interesting. The quiz also touched on how reluctant I am to trust others, that I'd rather have a small circle of devoted friends over several acquaintances, that I very much stand for victim's rights, and a career in social work or teaching would suit me best.  Needless to say it was pretty darn accurate.


Immediately after taking the quiz I told my husband and kids about it.  Both my kiddos took the quiz and answered the questions to the best of their ability (some questions didn't necessarily pertain to them but they got the idea).  I was surprised to find out that my both my children share the same exact personality traits! Well part of me was surprised, the other part of me knew they were much more similar than they'd like to believe.  I laughed at the results that said they should both seek a profession in entertainment.  They are certainly characters who love attention so I couldn't help but crack up. 

My husband also took the personality test and it was definitely an eye opener.  His results explained that he was very much a work-aholic.  It touched on how he sometimes struggles with personal relationships because of his need to succeed at his job.  Talk about hitting the nail on the head.  There is no doubt that man is an outstanding soldier.  He works 14+ hours days for months at a time and his crazy behind will volunteer for deployments every chance he gets.  Whenever I bring up that he's already deployed 5 times he always replies with "I know but the job isn't done.  They still need people to go.  I'm willing, I'm able. Why not me?".
 
The crazy part is seeing his results actually made me feel better.  It helped me realize it's not that he wants to get away from the people he loves, he just takes his job very, very serious. He said the results of the quiz did help him see that it's ok to not be so work oriented all the time.   Oh and we couldn't help but laugh at the list of  famous people who shared his personality traits. The majority of the names were Generals and Presidents!


If you find yourself with a few minutes to spare I highly recommend taking the quiz.  It's so worth answering the 72 questions and who knows, you might learn something new about yourself (or your loved one). 

If you do take it feel free to comment with what personality trait you are (or what famous face you share a personality trait with)!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Welcome Changes



First let me start by saying I've been a bad blogger.  Earlier in the year I expressed my desires to blog more often.  I had these high hopes of  maintaining a blogging routine, for example at the very least posting twice a week.  Well I think it's safe to say with September almost over and realizing I only published 4 posts this month, I sucked at that goal ladies and gents.  Truth be told I actually have a whole notebook filled with blog posts ideas and I have about 25 blog photos just sitting on my computer, waiting to be edited.  So what's the problem? Me!

I'll be all prepped and ready to type a post but once I'm sitting there in front of that blank page my mind goes blank as well.  Then I start to question if the idea I had for my post is even worth sharing.  Like, do people really want to see another DIY chalkboard?  It's been done about 20 million different ways, what makes mine so special?  Or, the discovery of an amazing new hairbrush that I found at Target that completely rids my daughter's hair of tangles (in under 1 minute no less).  Well wait a sec, why would anyone else care about that?  If they (or someone they love) doesn't suffer with tangles (how lucky are they?) then I just completely wasted their time...and so on and so on.

Then there's life in general that gets in the way.  Sometimes this is a good thing, a thing I very much welcome and other times, well it can be frustrating.  It's finding that all too elusive happy balance that not only I but we all struggle with.  A happy balance of family life, work life, commitments to others, and everything in between. 


My current goal is to bring that happy balance to my blog.  To help motivate me and get this blog going in the right direction, I'm currently working with some very talented ladies to update this blog's look.  Hopefully, it will be ready to debut by next week (fingers crossed).  I've worked with them in the past and they are nothing but fantastic!  I can't wait to see the new look and I really think you all are going to love it.  Think modern, cool, and crisp.  That's the look I'm going for at least (ha ha).

I also want to focus on the main purpose of my blog, which is to share. My mission statement is to create a blog that has substance, a blog which serves a purpose, and that purpose folks is to share.  I want to share things that make me happy, things I find interesting, things that are beneficial to others. Basically if it brings a smile to my face (or the faces of those I love) I want to share that with you!

I also never want this blog to be a place filled with negativity or whining.  I honestly believe EVERYONE has troubles in their life.  Mine are no better (or worse) than anyone else's.  Erika pity parties are not welcome here.  At the end of every blog post my goal is to share something that I've learned in hopes that my readers will learn something new as well. 

So thank you to those that have stuck around through out my sporadic blogging! You are truly amazing and I can't wait to share more creative tidbits with you all.  Especially once I get over this fear of "Is it good enough?". Also, if you have any tips on how you find balance in your life please feel free to share! Or if your life is a beautiful mess feel fee to share that as well.

Love you, mean it.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

August Beauty Favorites

Wow, can't believe it's already September! I was originally planning to post my August Beauty Favorites last week but this dang cold got in the way.  So not fun.  Thankfully I have some lovely beauty products that can help make me look better...even if I'm still not feeling 100% myself.  Got to even the playing field some how, am I right?

So here are the beauty products I was loving last month!


1.  The Body Shop Moringa Body Mist.  I picked this up at our PX for around $9 (which as I'm typing this I see that it's on sale online for around $6!).  I am absolutely in love with this scent.  It's light, fresh, and floral and in no way overpowering.  I have a feeling this body mist will be a favorite of mine for many, many months to come.

2.  Tree Hut Shea Sugar Body Scrub in Brazilian Nut. Oh My! This stuff smells like coffee! This is one of my all time favorite body scrubs.  It leaves my skin feeling so silky smooth and I go ga-ga for the scent.  It may say Brazilian Nut but it reminds me of a nice cup of coffee.  So naturally I'm addicted to this body scrub.

3.  Revlon PhotoReady BB Cream.  I decided to give this BB Cream a go.  I've heard conflicting reports when it comes to BB and CC creams.  People either love them or hate them.  I figured I'd see what all the fuss was about it.  I got to say I love this line of BB creams.  I definitely use this more as a makeup primer than actual foundation.  It makes my makeup go on smoother and last longer.  Overall I really like it.

4.  Revlon PhotoReady Eye Primer + Brightener.  I am obsessed with this! I got it on the same shopping trip as the BB Cream and I'm so happy I found it.  I use it as an eye primer and under eye concealer/brightener.  This product works wonders! It not only brightens my dark under eye circles but it keeps my eye makeup in place all day AND prevents it from creasing.  This stuff is A-mazing!

5.  Rusk Deep Shine Repair Restorative Masque. I got this deep conditioner in hopes that it would soften and repair my extremely dry hair.  Wow, does it ever! I use it once a week and I like that it penetrates deep like a normal hair mask would.  However, it doesn't weigh my hair down or leave it looking greasy like other deep conditioners. This is definitely a keeper.

6. Rusk Thermal Flat Iron Spray.  So to say my hair needs some help is a bit of an understatement.  I'm currently taking it easy when it comes to heat styling (more info on that in another post) but I can't put down my hair straightener just yet.  So in the mean time I've been using this hair protector.   It gets sprayed on dry hair just prior to using a flat iron.  It feels a bit like hair spray when it goes on but doesn't leave my hair feeling dry or crunchy.  I am loving it so much that I think once it's empty I'll definitely have to repurchase.

Well there you have it! My beauty faves for the month of August.  Can't wait to share with you my favorites for September!

Monday, September 9, 2013

The Dress Up Box {Giveaway}

Boy, do I have the cutest Giveaway for you folks today! The wonderful Miss Wendy from The Dress Up Box is giving one lucky winner their pick of ANY item from her adorable shop.



I absolutely love that Wendy's shop is centered around handmade children's clothing and accessories that specialize in Military themes.  Seriously, I wish her shop was around when my kids were itty bitty!  I would have totally got my son this ACU Bow Tie and my daughter would have looked adorable in this Army Tutu Dress.  But enough about me let's get to know Wendy!

I opened The Dress Up Box as a place for the community to find military themed children's clothing for homecoming ceremonies, photography sessions, special events, or day to day wear.


I made my first pettiskirts for my daughters to wear to greet my husband on his return home from his deployment last year. I got such a great response I started making dresses, bow ties, ties, skirts, and other items. I'm so pleased (and a little overwhelmed) at the wonderful response and support I've received from everyone. I'm so thankful and I love knowing that what I create is making other military family's special events a little more special.

While I use new fabric on most items, I can also use up-cycled fabric from a donated uniform (on some items depending on amount of fabric needed). Making an outfit or accessory out of a parent's uniform just makes it even more special! 

I currently have ACU and NWU (Navy) fabric in stock. My master plan is to soon offer each service branch's uniform colors.

Here are just a few of the adorable pieces she offers in her shop.




Too cute for words, am I right?!  Now for the fun part!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, September 6, 2013

Two Bathroom Updates

Do you remember this crazy but honest post?  If you didn't check it out it's a must read (angry Erika makes her appearance). It's also what followed these two relatively easy bathroom updates.

Any who, a few weekends ago I mentioned to my husband that I kind of wanted a new "fancy" faucet for our master bath.  It's a fairly small bathroom (especially for a master) so anything I can get my hands on to kind of "class it up" helps it not feel so small.  At least to me anyway.  My husband was surprisingly enthusiastic about the project with the exception of one minute detail.  We've never ever installed a faucet! Since we both have dreams of buying a fixer-upper cabin in the mountains (years down the road) we look forward to the little diy projects here and there.  Before I get to all the details though, here's what our old builder-basic faucet was looking like.


I apologize for the color in the photo. Our sink is actually white and not beige like it appears in the photo above. I was still trying to figure out the settings on my new camera when I took this.  I now know that the Tungsten setting is my friend while shooting pics indoors.  

Here's an older picture of our bathroom with more true to life colors.  It was taken a little over a year ago (before we had updated the light fixtures, which were also builder-basic).


So once we realized we were going to add a new faucet we went to Lowe's and picked one out in a brushed nickel finish (since those are the dominant finishes in our house).  My husband was convinced it would be a pretty simple project once we got home and for the most part it was.  The tricky part was figuring out how to replace the pop up drain. Our new faucet came with a matching pop up drain but it didn't include instructions on how to remove the old one.  So what's a diy-er to do?  Why hit up YouTube of course!

We watched this video and this video.  They helped a ton! They also made us realize we needed to use plumbers puddy. However, I started freaking out at the thought of having to saw through the pipe (as seen in the second video) but since we have a relatively new house with good pipes and no rust we didn't have too. Whew!

I tried to get some "during" photos but since this bathroom is so teeny tiny it didn't really work out.  So instead I'll share the beautiful after!



Here's the before and after comparison.



Since we were feeling like total rock stars we went back to Lowe's and picked up the exact same style faucet so we could replace the other builder basic one we had in the hall bath.  My husband was able to install that one even faster since we had a better grasp of how to do it.  I think from start to finish it took him 20 minutes to rip out the existing faucet and install the new one, pop up drain and all!



We have another full bathroom in our basement but we've decided to hold off on updating the faucet and hardware in there at least for a little while.  The bathroom in our basement is used primarily by our teenage son and I have a feeling anything new in there will get used and abused pretty quickly. 

So those are our latest home updates that we did all by ourselves.  Sometimes being a grown up can be kind of cool!  

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Oh hello there

I just wanted to pop in and say hello to all you wonderful readers.  I also wanted to apologize for my unannounced absence from blogland.  Last week I started to not feel so great and sure enough here I am almost 1 week later recovering from a pretty nasty cold.  I'm kind of bummed because I went 15 months without getting sick.  No cold, no flu, nothing for a year and 3 months! This disgusting cold has been going around for a while though and once everyone in my family had it I knew it was just a matter of time before it got to me.  I am starting to feel a little better though and I'm already itching to share some of my past projects with you.

I do have a couple of unpublished posts waiting so I'm hoping to share one of those tomorrow.  Oh yeah and you definitely want to come back on Monday because I have a pretty darn Fantabulous giveaway in the works! Trust me you won't want to miss it!
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