Monday Musings: Loves & Latest

monday musings

 

Loves

Reads

Live Lagom: Balanced Living, the Swedish Way by Anna Brones

I admire the Swedes, almost as much as I admire the Japanese. There’s just something about a slow, simple lifestyle that resonates with me and this book does just that. I purchased this on a whim because it had a pretty cover, but what I found is an inspirational and incredibly smart ode to slowing down and living with just enough.

How to Write an Autobiographical Novel: Essays by Alexander Chee

I review for Library Journal and my editor (shoutout to Stephanie!) has a knack for sending me just what I need when I need it. This is a prepub, and I’m still thinking how I’m going to review this, but the essays are excellent and Chee won me over when he revealed that we have the same tarot deck. *love*

Beauty

I feel like I should title this “on my face”

RMS Lip2Cheek in Beloved (the Detox Market)

The website describes this color as a “true red with just a hint of poppy to suit all skin tones” and boy does it suit my skin tone. In the pot this is red but on my cheeks it is the perfect, natural flush. I bought a sample of this through the Detox Market website and will be upgrading to a full size as soon as it’s empty.


 

Latest

Podcast

The Bluestocking Circle Podcast just celebrates it’s very merry half-birthday with Episode 6.5! If you love me, have a listen 🙂 We gush about all things geek with a theme every month.

Minisode 6.5: Feedback, Favorites, and First Impressions (with OTPs!)

Episode 6: Pushing Daisies

You can also find us on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and follow us everywhere @bluesoxcircle

 

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Monday Musings: Loves & Latest

monday musings

Loves

Reads

Howl’s Moving Castle

In preparation for the next episode of the Bluestocking Circle Podcast, I re-read and re-watched Howl’s Moving Castle and fell in love anew. It’s been some years since I consumed (hehe, Howl joke) either of these works and I adore them still.

Beauty

Ilia tinted lip conditioner in Pink Moon (Sephora)

I had some Sephora credit and decided to give this a try… it was well worth the impulse. The color is just the right amount of bright berry lip and it’s not too heavy or dramatic for a daytime/work look.


Latest

Podcast

The Bluestocking Circle Podcast Episode 6: Pushing Daisies

In which we discuss the right balance between fantasy and realism in romance, the rise and fall of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl, and the legal and ethical ramifications of drugged pies. All this and more as the Bluestockings discuss the TV series Pushing Daisies.

You can also listen and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and Podomatic. Or follow us everywhere @bluesoxcircle

Videos

(so I like making weird faces…)

Moodboards

I made a board for the podcast and it is a thing of beauty 🙂

project use it up: January empties

project use it up-2

Health

2018 empties #1

  • Renew Life Extra Care Ultimate Flora probiotics – these are easy to find when I need something extra
  • Gaia Herbs – Back Elderberry Syrup – takes delicious and really helps boost my immune system when I’m surrounded by sick students
  • Gaia Herbs Quick Defense – this is a super dose of elderberry and echinacea (among other hers) that makes a huge difference when I feel a cold coming on (I’ve used it in the past when fighting a really nasty cold and last year’s flu)

Toiletries & Skincare

2018 empties #1

  • Andalou Naturals Un-tinted Benefit Balm – I use this for the SPF 30. It leaves a mild white cast but it almost acts as a primer for my makeup. It’s not my favorite, but it works for every day sun protection.
  • Acure Facial Cleansing Creme – I prefer the regular cleanser, but my skin was feeling a little dry and sensitive, so I decided to give this one a try. It feels like a balm cleanser and works best as a second cleanse after removing makeup.
  • NOW Hyauluronic Acid Firming Serum – I love this and started a new bottle as soon as I ran out. It’s very light and acts as a moisturizing serum beneath my oil and sunscreen steps.
  • Botanical Beauty Organic Japanese Camellia Seed Oil – there is some debate as to whether the purity of this oil (amazon comments controversy, as per usual), but I credit this with helping my hair grow and become more smooth and manageable. It is my only form of conditioner and I use it on my ends and the lower half of my scalp where I tend to have some mild psoriasis. I love it and I already opened a larger bottle.
  • Johnson’s Head-to-toe extra moisturizing bath – I needed some moisture and I like baths.
  • The Beauty Shelf green tea Konjac sponge – I really like Konjac sponges and this one comes in a three heart set 🙂

Scents & Candles

2018 empties #1

  • Nature’s Alchemy orange essential oil
  • AuraCacia Lemon essential oil
    • I like citrus scents. These are from my office oil collection.

2018 empties #1

  • Frostbeard Book Lovers’ Soy Candle sample in Pumpkin Juice – this was milder than I expected. It has a nice spicy scent and does not linger.
  • Wilfred Wax Steamed & Frothed – one of my favorites. It’s soooo sweet though, a little goes a long way. I will replace this when I run out of my other candles.

video: something different, a chatty GRWM!

I wanted to do something different and totally unlike my usual fare, so I recorded a simple, classic “Get Ready with Me” to start the 2017 video series 🙂

Just an everyday makeup look on my last day of winter break.

Check in next week for a peek inside my bullet journal, and be sure to subscribe for updates!

See below for products.

Continue reading “video: something different, a chatty GRWM!”

video: using things up… Empties #2!

In an effort to make better use of the things I buy, I give you my second Empties video 🙂

Lots of products mentioned here, including health stuff, bath stuff, and some general lifestyle bits. I intended to list them all, but life happened and I lost track of time. So just watch for details and feel free to leave any questions in the comments. 🙂 I’m happy to share my thoughts on all and any products mentioned, or feel free to leave a recommendation.

Apologies for video quality issues, I noticed some blurring as I was editing, but I recycled all the products before I watched the video. Lesson learned.

going natural and other news

So I haven’t done any real writing in a couple of weeks… turns out that the weird tiredness and lack of concentration was probably the result of a slow-growing skin infection that had been building since my tumble down the stairs. I am now one toe-nail down and many antibiotics up. I’m not one to take too many meds if I can avoid it, but this is definitely not the time to avoid it… nightmares involving Civil War style amputations aside, the infection really was caught just in time. It could’ve been much worse. Luckily, aside from the occasional twinge, and the leftover swelling from the injection sites, I’m finally starting to feel myself again. That’s a very good thing for all involved, as I was staring to get very moody and grumpy because I was barely holding it together. Trying to stay positive.

Now, back to the part about going natural… yes, you heard that right, I’m going natural. What nonsense is this you ask? Well, I’ve been transitioning towards an all-natural (or as close to all-natural) health and wellness routine. This has meant several experiments with natural deodorants, oils, baking soda, arrowroot, vinegar, organic/minimal makeup, no more hair dying (this is a struggle, I was a long time color changer), no more hair drying (though I will do some minimal styling on special occasions and when the weather turns cold–I don’t want to have a Victorian style death by cold head/pneumonia episode), natural toothpaste, and plenty of raised brows from the mother and the boyfriend, but I’m loving it all! I’ll post some details later, but I’ve mostly been scouring the blogosphere for recipes and ideas. Some of the best have come from the following natural living blogs:

The best part is that I’ve really noticed a significant change in my skin and hair, especially the little lines and spots that were starting to show up from lack of moisture and old scarring. And it’s cheap! I’ve spent less on natural products that can be eaten as much as slathered on than I have on skincare at Sephora. I may not look like a hippie, but I’m a flower child on the inside 🙂

I’m wearing lipstick again

Yes, I am. Every year, I go into a fashion and makeup slump. It tends to happen right around the time that things get hectic with work and life (ie. holiday and/or finals time), and I end up letting go of any sense of fashion. But I’m frump girl no more! At least, until the next mad season. Today, I will rock the red lipstick and patterned dress look. And I will pretend that I am not about to fall over from lack of sleep.

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self-conscious musings

I’ve reached an age where I feel comfortable with my looks. Unless I am trying on some hopelessly skimpy outfit, which always makes me cringe with self-doubt. I really do think that I “came into my looks” when I was 23. Yes, I can pinpoint it to the year! It was when I started to feel fashionably put together, a feeling I lacked throughout my tweens and teens. However, there are some things I’ve learned about myself in my twenties.

I will never ever be a dainty girl. I may be fit, but I will never qualify as dainty. Ain’t no way, ain’t no how. I’m much too strong in the wrists to be defined as dainty.

I do not look like most girls… most especially, not like most girls in Miami. I would say I look the way most girls looked in the late 40s and early 50s. I have a face from another time. Talk about melodramatic :p .

I will always be 5lbs away from what I think I should weigh. There’s a lot more to this than I care to think about.

I have too many imperfections to count and yet I have a wonderful person who does not seem to notice them.

I really do look better as a brunette. My dreams of being a red-head never quite work out as planned.

I have my father’s toes; they’re all curvy.

I want to age with grace, but I will never be the girl who looks perfectly coiffed.

So it goes.