Things I Love Thursdays (even though, ahem!, it's FRIDAY)

Blogger was a big, whiny baby and out of commission for almost an entire 24 hours, which meant I couldn't post this entry that was so obviously meant for Thursday, not Friday. Also, blogger decided to delete any posts that were made on Wednesday so, guess what? They deleted my "Ask Me Anything! Answers, Round Deux" post and believe me, I am fuming! The Blogger administrator said they were in the process of restoring deleted posts, but Blogger has since been up and running and my post is nowhere to be found. Grrrr! I am so tempted to pack up shop and head over to Wordpress.  I heard it's nice over there.

I'm still trying to get back into the swing of things post-mini.  I've made the mistake of running three times this week and playing two softball games (and a third tonight), so my thighs are raging sore and if I don't take it easy this weekend, my legs might snap off and hit someone in the eyeball.  But every time I see someone outside running, I get the familiar twinge in my legs and can't help but go run myself.

Anyway ... Here's what I meant to post yesterday:

There’s a reason I’m opting to do a “Things I Love Thursday” rather than a “Favorite Things Friday”. Every time I think of the latter, I start singing to myself “Rain drops on roses and whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mitten. Brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of my favorite things …”, and I simply refuse to live my life like that.

On to business …

Coach’s Legacy Perfume

I’m not typically a name-brand snob, but I do love me some Coach. 

I don’t consider myself incredibly feminine or girly, but smelling good has always topped my list of priorities.  No one likes a stinky girl. No one.  I’ve done a lot of searching for the “perfect perfume” which after going through many scents, I’ve learned is a hard thing to do.  I believe a woman’s scent is her signature, and I don’t like to just slap any ol' fragrance on my skin before walking out the door. I want to smell pretty, and fresh … and like myself.  I’ve tried numerous perfumes over the years, but not one I liked enough to buy a second time.  However, this past winter I finally discovered my signature scent—Coach’s Legacy.

I honestly don’t feel like my look is complete until I give myself a light spritz of this perfume.  It hits all the right floral and musk notes without being overpowering or too intense.  It’s light, clean and it makes me feel beautiful.  If you haven’t found your signature scent, I seriously recommend hitting a department store and exploring your options. 

Wal-Mart’s MainStays Jar Candle in Hazelnut Cream

My love of candles borderlines on obsessive at times, and I’ve spent many a Saturday afternoon wandering around our Yankee candle store inhaling their hundreds of scents.  However, I can’t usually afford to drop $25 on a candle (although I totally wish I could), and my Yankee candle purchases are usually limited to once a year when we buy their Pumpkin Pie scent in the fall. But thanks to Wal-Mart, you can have a yummy smelling apartment/home/dorm on a budget! Their Mainstays jar candle collection, though limited, has some amazing smells! Their largest candle size is a steal a $6 dollars and matches Yankee candles in the strength of their smells and burn time. My go-to candle is their Hazelnut Cream. It makes our apartment smell warm and inviting all year round, and sometimes I feel like I’m living in a Starbucks.  Another favorite of mine (for the warmer months) is Tropical Fruit, a candle scent incredibly reminiscent of Yankee's Pineapple Cilantro.  

Summer produce

As I mentioned in my previous post, I am a vegetable fanatic and there is no better time to get a wide variety of fruits in veggies in your diet than in the summer.  I’ve seriously told Clayton I would much prefer to get a bouquet of asparagus than actual flowers.  I get deliriously excited when I see our local grocery store stocking up on fresh strawberries, peaches, plums and nectarines, and our local farmers’ market is out of this world. I pray that I can one day have a big enough yard that I can plant my own corn and enjoy my favorite foods for a fraction of the cost. Have you ever seen that Hidden Valley Ranch commercial where people are eating nothing but salads, broccoli and carrots? That’s what I imagine heaven is like.

Almay’s Smart Shade Smart Balance foundation

One of my favorite things about being a girl is wearing make-up.  I’ve been wearing it regularly since I was 13 and feel like I can’t leave my house without at least a sweep or two of mascara.  More than just a vanity thing, I think wearing make-up is fun.  My mom and I bond over it because she has an amazing collection of eye shadow colors and taught me how to perfect the smokey eye.

Finding a foundation can be kind of tricky because there are so many brands and types on the market, each one promising to do something different.  My biggest beef with foundation is that I can never find one that matches my skin tone close enough, especially during the spring when I’m making the slow transition from super pasty to tanned goddess.  I was intrigued when Almay started their marketing campaign for their Smart Shade Smart Balance foundation line and made claims that it would match your skin color no matter what. 

This product is amazing and actually more affordable than most foundations I’ve worn in the past.  It’s incredibly light on my face, is made with an SPF 15 and most importantly, never leaves that dreaded foundation line on my chin.  It blends perfectly!  If you’re not a huge make-up fan, but would still like to have smooth-looking skin, I would definitely recommend this product.  Like I said, it never feels heavy and evens out my skin just enough that I look brighter and more awake.

In fact, I’m a huge fan of Almay’s entire eye shadow line.  Their Intense-I-Color pallets are specifically designed to match the color of your eyes.  Of course having brown eyes, I usually only get paired with purples and browns, but they’re incredibly subtle shades with hints of shimmer that really make my eyes pop.  And again, SUPER affordable. Can’t beat that!