Friday, September 7, 2012

Good morning, Beautiful People!

I am enjoying one of the last of the somewhat relaxing days my family has before the craziness of our fall schedule gets into full swing.  But that's not a complaint - I like my life full, filled to the brim and running over - just like my coffee cup!  It's also a reminder to keep the less important stuff under control so I can focus on the good stuff and keep my priorities a priority. in the meantime, here are a few ways to stay on trend without going overboard.  What ideas do you have?

Fall Fashion and Style Predictions.  Do you know what you'll be wearing when the fall weather hits?  Here are a few ideas for what's in store this season.  Does anything fit your personal style? (hint, its all about leather).

Create your own great manicures.  Don't have time (or funds) to make it to the nail salon?  That's ok, here are some ideas to give yourself a cool, trendy manicure.  Some are super easy, too!

Is coffee good for you skin?  I vote yes.  Read it and see if you agree!

Beauty Guru:  Feel stylish for fall with a modern pixie and messy black liner. 

Have a beautiful day!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Great magazine!
Don't forget to read about how to transform your wardrobe from summer to fall! Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


I love to shop.  It's kind of sad, really, the thrill I get from finding a great bargain, a super-trendy outfit, or an awesome pair of shoes.  Even better if I find a bargain on a super-trendy pair of shoes!  The problem with shopping, though, is that I find all kinds of things I never knew I needed.  $23 for a pair of absolutely ah-mazing purple, studded, $200 heels that I cannot walk three steps in without falling over.  $17 for a waffle maker that I just knew would make my life better-and I think my husband may have actually used it....once.  A pair of uber-trendy sandals for only a couple dollars, but they made my ankles look fat.  The bathing suit that was too big, and the jeans that were way too small.  I've been sorely feeling the errors of my impulse buying ways as I haul more than a few bags of extra stuff to the Good Will store. It's a good reminder to me, as I carry over-weighted bags to the car, that all that extra stuff is just a heavy burden.  It might be good stuff, but its not good stuff for me, because I just don't need it.  The reality is, though, that stuff takes time, money, and energy to buy, sort, organize, store, clean, and eventually, dispose of. So I am intentionally asking myself, what 'stuff' is it that I really need? Every time I walk through Target (my beloved arch-nemesis in the battle against too much stuff!) Honestly, not much.  If I am truly honest, I am embarrassed with all of my stuff.

I am working on decluttering my stuff and decluttering my life in the process, intentionally whittling away at the things that prevent me from doing and being what I really love. I am emptying closets, letting go, and giving my self permission to be free of the stuff.  It's very freeing, and I can't wait to get on to the next round of getting rid of stuff.

In the meantime, check out this book that helped me get started!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday Morning Beauty Buzz

Not ready for Monday?  Me either!   So grab a cup of your favorite java, pull up a chair, and browse through the Beauty Buzz.  It feels good to postpone Monday just a few minutes more. 

Repair Damaged Hair.  Tips to fix your hair after it has sustain damaged. 

5 Secrets to Healthy Hair.  How to keep your hair healthy, shiny, and beautiful.

Care for Freshly Colored Hair. Make the most of your new hair color.

8 Eye Liner Tricks for Defined Eyes  Best eye liner tips for great looking eyes. 

Spring Clean Your Beauty Stash  Weed through your makeup so it is clean, safe, and current. 

Easy Steps to Healthy Skin  Simple steps to keeping your skin beautiful. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Free Piano Music!

A free piano song for you... just click the "Buy Now" button to download it free. :-)

Support independent publishing: Buy this e-book on Lulu.

Or check out my book, Clef Hangers.

Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Morning Rituals

Do you have a morning ritual?  I suppose we all do.  Mine consists of hitting the snooze button a few dozen times, hiding my face from the daylight, and being dragged out of bed by an excited five year old! After a panicked glance at the clock, I limp to the bathroom where I get dressed, attempt to create something beautiful out of the massive bedhead that is my hair, put on a pile of makeup in a vain attempt to look well-rested, and finally put on some jewelry so I look a little bit put together.  It happens in the same order every single day.  Then I hobble down the stairs, still not awake, with my eyes glued open with mascara to make breakfast for my clan.  And then it's a mad dash to get everyone dressed and out the door for their respective activities.  Does this sound like you?  Oh, and there is coffee.  Lots of coffee.  Every step of the way, or I would still be in bed, smacking away at that awful snooze button.

But there is something missing from my morning ritual.  Did you catch it?  Instead of starting my day with the things that are most important, I am barely getting my day started at all.  It is an act of sheer will power just to get out of bed and get going.  Someway, somehow, I need to change that.  Part of what I need is more sleep and a better diet. But what I would really love is to start my day with some quiet time, some Bible reading, and some prayer and meditation.  I need to start my day off right so that I can help my family start their day off right.

I am guilty of spending far more time prepping the outside of me for the days events than I do even thinking about the inside of me.  Both parts of me are important - the inside and the outside.  I need to find the balance of making both the inside and the outside beautiful.  And somehow, someway, I want to make my morning rituals reflect that.  How about you?  What are your morning rituals?  Do they reflect everything you want them to reflect?

Monday, July 16, 2012


Check out some of these great new products from Eyes Lips Face!  You can't beat the prices, either!
I just ordered a few of these myself, and I can't wait to give them a try.  If you try them, let me know what you think!

Upper left:  Lip exfoliator, Face Line Filler,Eye Makeup Remover Pen, Zit Zapper, Small Stippling Brush, Eye Shadow Shield, and Matte Lip Color.  Upper Right:  Makeup Remover Pen, Face Line Viller, and Zit Zapper.

Shop here! e.l.f. Mineral Makeup. Mineral Makeup from e.l.f. Cosmetics for Great Low Prices!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Hi!   Please read my article on creative bathing suit cover-ups.  I'd love to know what your favorite cover-up is this season.   

Monday, July 9, 2012

I want that!

I want that.  Heard all too frequently in my house, usually in an unpleasant, whiny tone.  If you have - or had- or know - small children, big children, teenagers, or adults, I bet you've heard it, too.  It's not something we typically encourage in our home, rather, we remind our wee ones to use their polite, big kid voices.  And that has a success life of about, oh, 2 seconds.  But they are learning, and so are we! 
Truthfully, though, how bad is it to want something?  What else drives us, but a desire for something bigger, better, or different? Were it not for desires, wants, and needs, we would linger and stagnate when we need to move onward and upward.

In my studies towards my seminary degree, there is no time to linger over things which deserve to be lingered over- a scripture, a theology, or a thought -provoking moment in history.  There is much to learn in a very short amount of time.  The more I study, and the more I learn in this whirlwind of course materials, is that I want an awful lot of things.  Some things I want are just, noble, and beautiful….others maybe a bit vanity related, greedy.  I suppose I can sound just as whiny as anyone when I want something I can’t have.   

Getting back to seminary…I truly love character studies, where I get to look deeply into the life of a person from the Bible.  They remind me of Bible celebrities, whose lives make an impact thousands of years later, whose downfalls and shortcomings are as gossip-worthy as any other A-lister.  To get a peek into their lives, relationships, weaknesses, talents, and ministry is a privilege and a challenge.  It shows me how God works in and through the lives of His people.  It shows me how God can transform a life.  It shows me how He is strong in our weaknesses, and it shows me what I want.

What do I want?  Here are a few thoughts from the lives of some of my favorite Bible celebs.

Moses whined when God called Him.  I so don't want  to do that. 
He was considered a friend of God: I want that!

King David was an adulterer and a murder.  Need that like I need a hole in the head.  But being a Man (or in my case, woman) after God's own heart?  I want it.

Ezekiel, prophet during a time of exile, and a young widower.  No thanks. 
Felt the word of God was like a fire in his bones...I. Want. That.

Paul, persecutor of Christians.  Nada.
Paul, willing to die for his faith, yes!

Peter, betrayer.  Not me!  (Oh, I hope not me)
The rock on which church is built, what an honor, a challenge, and a blessing.

What do I want? To know God and be known by Him.  To have a fire in my bones to share Him.  To be His friend, and to be after His heart. To have a faith willing to die for. To be the person that God has made me to be. And most of all, more of God.  That is what I want. 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Stay up to date on the latest styles in the Lehigh Valley!  Please read my latest article in Lehigh Valley Family  on page 21.  Thanks!

Have a beautiful day!

Monday, June 11, 2012

The changing face of makeup.

I have a confession to make.  I can't bear to leave my house without makeup.  Not for any reason, really.  In fact, I probably channel a little bit of inner 1950's housewife.  Not that I can in any way, shape, or fitted dress come close to being like a modern day June Cleaver (cook, clean, vacuum?  ugh), but I do feel a need to get myself up and put together before my family wakes up.  I just don't feel complete unless my hair, makeup, and clothes are done.  Even more so, I don't feel beautiful.  I wear makeup everywhere.  If I could, I would sleep in it the night before so that I could just jump out of bed and look beautiful.  (But we all know that causes pimples, so I'll just move on...)

It got me really thinking about how easily we can change our 'outside.'  How do you change your makeup and hair based on what mood you're in when you wake up in the morning?  Or based on what you're doing that day?  I might wear something conservative for Meet the Teacher, but I might go a little wild with eye shadows when I'm going to be home all day on a Saturday.  You should have seen the peacock green eye shadow this week!  (The best time to test out new techniques is when you're not in a rush, trust me on that).  If I was a going to the gym kind of girl, I'd probably wear very light, natural makeup, but a bit of makeup nonetheless. 

The instant that I want to be more beautiful, or more glam, or more edgy on the outside, all it takes is a bit of makeup and a mirror.  A few minutes out of my day, at best.  Wish it were so simple to change on the inside!  Oh, I have great intentions and think, "Today I am going to be more patient with_____" or "Today I am going to listen to God's voice" or "be more loving towards my spouse" but the truth is, it's not that easy.  Inner change is painfully slow and too often a result of something we'd rather not experience in the first place.  External change takes a little work; internal change takes a lot.  It takes a lot of time, prayer, and Bible.  We have a saying in my house:  change is good. But being beautiful from the inside out is even better.

Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.  1 Peter 3:3-4, NIV

Hair tips for today! 
Is your hair oily? 
Fun hairstyles for cheap
Avoid these summer hair mistakes

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Good morning to all my beautiful friends!  It's a gorgeous day outside!  Even though its not too hot, remember to put on your sun screen every day to prevent skin cancer and (gasp) premature aging.   Mineral powder is a great way to get a natural sunscreen. 

By now, you know that I love all things beauty and fashion, but there is something that is even more important than how we look.  I absolutely think we should take pride in our appearance, but its pretty meaningless unless we first look at our hearts.  Today, I'm thinking about the condition of my heart - what areas of my heart need to be made beautiful?  What areas are just downright ugly? A face can be made beautiful with makeup, but it takes a lot more to change the condition of a heart.  Next time you touch-up your make up, take a second to think about how your heart looks, also.  If you could look at your heart in the mirror, would you like what you see?  

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Sam, 16:7, NIV)

Beauty Tips for today!

Beauty Guru: The top treasures in a cosmetologist's makeup bag.  Check out what I carry in my makeup bag.  Tell me, what's in yours? 

Guide to Office Makeup Touchups When you need to touch up your makeup at the office.

The Best Eyebrow Wax Keep your eyebrows looking beautiful! 

Have a beautiful day! 

Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Beauty Buzz

Hi, friends!

Are you ready for summer?  I am soooo ready... but my summer style is not.  If you're lagging behind on summer fashion and beauty trends like me, then check out these links to help get you in the summer mood!
Have a beautiful day!

Paint Your Toes on the Go  Some ideas to get your toes painted while you're on the run.

Facial Contouring with Mineral Powder Foundation  Look your best by contouring with mineral powder.

Great Summer Skin at Really Great Prices Skin care doesn't have to cost a fortune.

Upcoming Eye Trends for Summer and Fall  Great eye looks for summer and fall.

Tips to get the perfect haircut  What you need to do to get the best haircut for you.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Daddies and Daughters

From the skinned-knee tomboy on the monkey bars, to the budding artist at her easel, and the darling diva with her karaoke machine, it seems to me that little girls always want the loving approval of their daddies. Not just a "Way to go!" or a pat on the back, little girls -and even us grown up little girls - want an adoring gaze, a loving hug, or a hand held in appreciation. We never get too old to bask in the love of a father. Instead of showing my Dad my dance moves or my drawings, I send him my grad school papers, text him with theology questions, and call him for parenting help. I still get to be his half-pint, even when I feel like a gallon-full!

But we live on earth and not all father's here are perfect. I like to think that mine is pretty close, though (Dad, are you reading this???) Sadly, some are downright lousy. If you've experienced pain or hurt at the hands of your earthly dad, then my heart goes out to you. Maybe you are still be seeking his approval, even if you never got it as a child.

Thankfully, we have a Heavenly Father that we can always run to with booboos, and heartbreaks, mistakes, successes, and hurts, and lots of need for approval. We don't ever have to earn His approval. We've already got it. And if we accomplish nothing else in this life, we can bask continually in the love of our Heavenly Daddy who wants to heal our hurts, show us His unfailing love, and give all of us little girls - big and small- His total approval. Won't you bask in His love today?

 This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. (1 John 4:9, 16-18 NIV)

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Toys and blessings. Which will you choose?

My living room is filled to the brim with toys.  In fact, it is pretty much overflowing with oodles of age-appropriate, fascinating, full of buttons, topped with whirly-gigs, and replete with noises, and totally fun - toys.  Lots and lots of toys.  Toys that we spent many hard earned dollars on, that we joyfully gave to our small children for their own amusement and enjoyment.  Toys to bless our loved ones.
And yet,at times, my sweet,dear children would rather 'get into things' (you know, things like flushing entire rolls of toilet paper all at once, pouring juice on the piano, or climbing on the furniture) they shouldn't and earn for themselves a very boring time-out, when they could be playing with their toys and just having fun.  Why?  I ask them.  Why would you rather get mixed up in the things that are not meant for you, that could make you get hurt or cause you sadness, when there are plenty of wonderful, fun, and just plain delightful things available that were hand picked just for you?  Why would you rather earn yourself a timeout, I wonder, then have freedom with the things that are just right?

I suppose God could ask the same of us.  Why would we want to dabble in the dangerous, toy with negativity, or burden ourselves with the consequences of sin when we could live freely and abundantly among the blessings that God has hand-picked just for us?  Why, when he has given us so many good and wonderful things to enjoy, do we reach for the things we know will cause us angst or unhappiness or pain?  Why do we choose consequences, when we could live freely and abundantly in God's perfect will?  

How can I choose the abundant blessings that God has handpicked just for me, instead of the allure of sin and temptation?  

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whateveris noble, whatever is right, whatever is purewhateveris lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.  Philippians 4:7-9, NIV

29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:29-30, NIV

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Take a long, slow drink.

I love this little plant. 

I've had it for years.  

It looks half dead.  And it's pretty small. 
It should be lush, and full.  And overflowing its little pot.

But I forget to water it.  Most of the time. 

So instead of getting long, slow drinks of life-giving water, it gets a dribble here, a dribble there, a deluge if I'm really thinking about it.  It's been chewed on by the cat more than a few times.  And yet, this little plant carries on.  It basks in the sun.  And it tries to grow.  Just as a new branch sprouts, an old one dies, because this plant needs a drink.  It doesn't ask for much.  A drink of water is all it needs from me.  

It would be a beautiful plant.  If only I gave it enough water to drink. 

Aren't we thirsty?  Aren't we starving for God's Word?  But rather than take big long drinks and getting my fill, I find myself getting a dribble here, a dribble there, and a deluge if the guilt of not having a disciplined devotional time overtakes me.  And I get chewed on by life, scalded, and parched, and yet I limp along when I know that all I need is a drink. I feel half-dead at times, burned out, and worn, with my spiritual limbs falling down and my roots barely clinging to the dried out soil.  But all I need is a drink

 A long, slow drink in God's Word.  

I love this little plant.
I think I'll give it a drink.
And maybe I'll take one, too.  A nice, long, slow drink.

Psalm 23

A psalm of David.
 1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 
 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, 
he leads me beside quiet waters, 
 3 he refreshes my soul. 
He guides me along the right paths 
   for his name’s sake. 
4 Even though I walk 
   through the darkest valley,[a] 
I will fear no evil, 
   for you are with me; 
your rod and your staff, 
   they comfort me.

 5 You prepare a table before me 
   in the presence of my enemies. 
You anoint my head with oil; 
   my cup overflows. 
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me 
   all the days of my life, 
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD 

Monday, March 5, 2012

A great discount for you!

Good morning, Friends! I just received an email with a great discount for you! You can receive 20%off of my book, Clef Hangers or any other other book at Just enter the code SPACIOUS305 at check out. You can purchase Clef here:Clef Hangers Shop around for other great books, too. Have a great day!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Beauty Buzz for January 11th.

Hair trends for 2012.  What's new for hair in 2012.

Best Makeup for Valentine's Day  Need some makeup ideas for your Valentine's Day date?  Try these!

10 best hairstyles for Valentine's Day  Hair ideas for your Valentine's Day dinner. 

What to Wear on Winter Dates  It's hard to dress for winter dates - here's how to look cool and stay warm.

Best makeup for winter dates.  Get your makeup ready for your winter date night.

Get your hair ready for winter dates Tame the frizz for your date night. 

10 easy manicures you can give yourself  Some easy DIY manicure styles for you to try.

10 body parts you can slim instantly.  Look slimmer right now with these tips.

How to grow your hair for your wedding day.  Want to grow out your hair for your wedding?  Here's what you need to know. 

Five steps to faster hair styling.  Get ready faster with these hair styling techniques.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

My sweet husband, knowing that I'm always looking for beauty topics to write about, picked up a magazine for me the other day.  The magazine is In Touch, and the headline is "100 Stars without Makeup."  It was pretty neat to see all the faces of these gorgeous, glamourous women stripped down to their bare skin.  Some of them still looked beautiful.  Others looked like a normal, every day person, many of which I didn't even recognize.  A few didn't look too great.   It's amazing how much makeup can alter your appearance.  And it made me start thinking about how appearances are so deceiving.

Right now, my life is on a little bit of a roller coaster.  I can't go into detail, but I can tell you that I have a lot of ups and downs.  Some days I am convinced that things are going to end up how I want them to go, and other days I just feel disappointed and scared that they won't.  The reality - the part that I'm really trying to grasp and learn - is that God is at work in my circumstances whether I see it or not.  It doesn't matter how it appears to me, He is working it out, just as He wants it to go.  So even when things aren't looking good for me, when I'm feeling low, or scared, or disappointed, I can at least have  peace knowing that even though it seems bleak, God is still at work.  And He will continue to be at work, no mater what I'm feeling.

Romans 8:28

New International Version (NIV)

 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.

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