What I Wore: Casual Day at the Lake

Photo Credit: Cliq Photography

Casual outfit with kimono on www.girllovesglam.com

Sometimes you need to sip every last drop of summer that you can. This includes evening visits to the lake while the toddler is with grandma. There is a sense of peace that is felt when you are around nature. This is especially the case when you don’t have the responsibility of watching a toddler near the water. This night was absolutely gorgeous. There had just been a rainstorm of epic proportions and just as the storm left, a rainbow made its way into view while the lake stayed calm with the perfect cool breeze blowing across the wet sand.

Coco Chanel quote tshirt

That same cool breeze elegantly blew my kimono as I walked across the sand. The gorgeous floral print made me feel dainty while it blew in the breeze. It pairs so perfectly with this Coco Chanel shirt because it dresses up the shirt while the shirt helps add some shape to my body so I am not so overtaken by the kimono.

Casual accessories on www.girllovesglam.com

No outfit is complete without accessories of course. These RayBan sunglasses are such a dream! I mean does it get any better than tourtouse with a fun, yellow accent? I don’t think it does. The earrings couldn’t get any better either. There are so many little details that go around the stone that make them feel so elegant. But let’s face it, I love the fact that there is fat bling on my ears. They are pretty amazing. This necklace has some really special significance to me. Dave gave it to me when we were engaged. He had me close my eyes and he put it on me while he told me that he wanted this necklace to be a reminder to me that I was his angel and that I was a daughter of God. I have never forgotten that.

Casual Beachy Outfit

Shirt | Kimono (similar) | Earrings | Necklace (similar) | Sunglasses | Jeans (similar) | Sandals

Sometimes you need to take a step back from life and just literally or metaphorically wiggle your toes in the sand and splash in the lake.

DIY Falling Lego Blocks Shirt & GIVEAWAY!

After seeing the Lego Movie, we officially caught Lego fever at our house. We already had plenty of Lego toys before seeing the movie, but as soon as we saw it, Harper couldn’t get enough of her Legos. To celebrate her new found love of Lego bricks, I decided to make her the cutest little t-shirt you have ever seen.

DIY Falling Lego Block Shirt on www.girllovesglam.com

 

 

I was inspired to make a shirt with falling Lego bricks because that is literally what it is like when you are playing Legos with a toddler. There are Legos EVERYWHERE! I feel like there are falling Lego bricks everywhere you look so I wanted to embrace that and create a fun design on her shirt like that too. Honestly, I had no idea how cool this shirt would turn out. My husband even wants one in his size. The best part? It is probably the easiest thing I have ever designed out of vinyl too! It is totally a beginner project.

What you will need…

*Shirt

*Iron

*Lego colored iron on vinyl

*Vinyl cutter

Lego Block Silhouette for Cricut

First, go in on your vinyl cutting software and create your Lego bricks. To do this, just create a rectangle and put three smaller rectangles above it. You can do different sizes of Legos, but this worked out well for me. Then you will cut out these Lego brick shapes onto the heat transfer vinyl. I cut out 4 different colors.

DIY Lego Brick Shirt Tutorial

Then you are going to weed off the extra vinyl around each of the Lego brick shapes and cut apart the Lego bricks so they are each individual bricks.

How to make a Lego shirt

Then you are going to want to lay out the Lego brick shapes and figure out where you want them to be on the shirt. Iron on each Lego brick onto the shirt. Make sure to keep the iron on each piece long enough for it to stick on. I like to iron it for about 3o seconds, with plenty of pressure.

DIY Easy Lego Shirt Tutorial

Now your kiddo (or you) have the coolest Lego shirt around! I love how stylish this shirt is, while still being fun.

For more fabulous Lego posts, be sure to check out the projects my fellow bloggers did too!

Lego projects

You can find links to all of these projects HERE.

Expressions Vinyl is also giving away $100 to their store! Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My First House Swan Song

As the week starts, I am pretty overwhelmed with feelings about closing on our house. There will be a new family moving in this weekend. I really am a total basket of emotions inside. I feel happy that the right person walked through our house so quickly. I feel relieved to be leaving the stress of home ownership for a little while while we rent. I feel sad to be leaving my family behind in Idaho Falls. I feel heartbroken to leave the beautiful memories that we created as a family by becoming first time parents in that house. I feel torn to leave all of my work in that house.

I can’t help but think of that episode of Glee where they all sing their final swan songs to give a proper goodbye while representing themselves. I think it is only appropriate to do the same for my first-cutest-little-high maintenance-old-quirky house.

My First House Swan Song: All of the home projects that happened in this house. Tons of links to great home tutorials in one place on www.girllovesglam.com

(Sorry for the lack of photos for this first part! Don’t worry, the photos and projects that were documented come further down the post! Click on the photos to take you to each individual tutorial.)

We bought this house in January 2011. It was old, quirky, and very brown. All but two of the rooms in the house were brown. Those rooms were dark green and what my husband liked to refer to as daycare blue. The paint colors weren’t our favorites, but we knew we could change them easily. I started with painting the daycare blue room a gorgeous celery green. It served as my craft room for less than a year before it was turned into our tiny little muchkin’s bedroom. We had one room painted and many, many more square feet to cover.

Next came the bathroom that was full of thick, unpainted bead board. That was painted white and quickly became an adorable bathroom. It became even cuter when a crazy turn of events happened. You know those moments when you as a home owner think about the previous home owner and wonder, “What were they thinking?!”? Well, that happened when my husband and dad decided to change the wax plug on our toilet. When they took the toilet off of the floor, they found that under the peel and stick tiles in the bathroom was a gorgeous, black and white ceramic tile floor! Holla! That became our next project. We took the peel and stick tiles off and spend the next 2 days wiping the glue off of our tiles with paint thinner. I could go the rest of my life without smelling that horrible smell. In the end, it was totally worth it! I will really miss that tile floor.

The dark green room changed when I was pregnant. We knew we needed to have our bedroom closer to the nursery, so we moved our bedroom downstairs. I was in my first trimester of my pregnancy and wasn’t supposed to be around any sort of paint smells so Dave took on that paint project himself. Bless his heart. He hates painting more than anything, but I appreciated him listening to his crazy pregnant wife who insisted on him painting it gray and yellow.

He decided he was willing to take on another project if I would do it with him, so we made ourselves an address plaque for our house. I love that it added a little personal touch to our home on the outside.

DIY Address Plaque on www.girllovesglam.com

After I was past the stage of my pregnancy where I had to be ultra careful, I decided to take on my first BIG project. That was my kitchen table and chairs! I have sick obsession with stripes and bright colors. I knew I wanted my house to be a happy place and I wanted my kitchen table and chairs to really be a representation of that, so I chose to paint the table with black and quite stripes and paint each chair a different color. I have never regretted my choice to refinish this set.

Striped Kitchen Table and colored Chairs DIY makeover on www.girllovesglam.com

Later, I added stripes to the breakfast nook, and a super cute DIY geometric table runner too that really brought the whole space together.

Painted stripe wall tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com Geometric Table Runner tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com

I learned pretty early on that when you own a home, you get a lot more responsibilities with that… including housework. I was having a really difficult time finding a good system to keep me accountable for keeping my house in order. After a lot of planning, I finally created my organization board. It helped me stay sane while trying to keep my home a happy, organized place.

Organization Board Command Center on www.girllovesglam.com

Throughout the years I found a few other solutions to keep my house organized too. They became essential parts of my everyday life.

Laundry Organization Center on www.girllovesglam.com Home Office Organization on www.girllovesglam.com

When my daughter was just 12 weeks old, I attended a creative blogger conference where I took a stenciling class. I was immediately inspired to come home and take on another huge project… stenciling my tile in my enclosed patio. Not only was I going to do that, but I was going to makeover that poop brown room into something beautiful. It turned out exactly how I had hoped it would. After hours of slaving away on that floor, it was all worth it. That floor was one of the hardest things to say goodbye to.

Enclosed Porch Makeover on www.girllovesglam.com Houndstooth Stenciled Tile Tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com

There came a time in home ownership where I was fairly content. I knew that I wanted to do more with my house, but was happy enough with it that I didn’t want to take on any huge projects. We actually put our house on the market a year ago. After 4 months and 70 house showings without a decent offer, we realized that it just wasn’t in God’s plan for us at that time. We knew we had done everything right to get the house ready, but it just wasn’t our time to go yet.

Tips for Selling your House on www.girllovesglam.com

(P.S. We did these exact same things when we put our house up on the market this time and it sold in 6 days! These tips and the ones shared in the comments are crucial for selling your house in a timely manner!)

Once we took our house off the market, I decided it was time to take on a new project. If I was going to be living in this house, I was going to need to fall in love with it all over again. I took on the living room. I am sad to leave behind my most favorite paint color, but happy that most of my room makeover was removable and will be joining me in my new place. My house finally felt like a place I wanted to be again. It was happy, colorful, and modern.

Colorful and Modern Living Room Makeover on www.girllovesglam.com Gold Triangle Wall Art that is removable on www.girllovesglam.com

A few months later, I was ready to give the kitchen a little update. I thought it would be a quick little kitchen update if I just painted my walls, put in a new sink, and added some hardware on my cabinets.

How to install a kitchen sink on www.girllovesglam.com

The problem was when I put the gorgeous new hardware up against my cabinets, it looked terrible! My ugly oak cabinets weren’t worth worth of such pretty hardware. I knew I needed to go bigger. I needed to paint my cabinets. I got my paint and was all ready to start painting when I was given the news about my husband’s new job. I couldn’t just leave my kitchen without taking on this project! After sending my husband off to live in a new town, I took on my biggest project of all. With the help of an awesome mom who babysat nonstop for me, a dad who coached me through everything, some incredible friends who came and painted with me til the wee hours of the night, I was able to knock this project out in less than a week. It all came together so beautifully, I would find myself just standing in the kitchen staring at it. I got to enjoy it for about 3 weeks before my house sold.

How to paint cabinets and add hardware to your kitchen on www.girllovesglam.com

I know that every little project came together to create exactly the type of home that I wanted to have. I finally had the happy, colorful home I had been searching for. I know that the family moving in is going to be able to create some really special memories there just like we were able to. Although this is an end of a pretty life changing chapter in our lives, this is just the beginning to so many cherished memories that are yet to happen.

House Swan Song: Looking back at favorite DIY home projects from one house on www.girllovesglam.com

So this is goodbye little house. I will miss you. You will always be my daughter’s first “sweet home” and will forever hold a special place in my heart.

The fat lady has sung. Your swan song is up. Time to take your final bow and close the curtains.

 

Five Minute Makeup Routine

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #AllDayLook #CollectiveBias

I like having a few different makeup looks that I know I can count on when I am in a hurry. I have one for when I only have three minutes to spare that you can find HERE, but sometimes I am in a hurry and have a little more time than that. On those days, I want to have a little more makeup on my face so that I can feel like I am done up for the day and can have the confidence that my makeup looks great all day long.

Five Minute Makeup Routine on www.girllovesglam.com

The key to creating a quick and easy makeup look is to keep it simple. That is easy to do with the Neutrogena products I found at Target.

Neutrogena Makeup at Target

I have always loved Neutrogena products because I feel like they keep things simple. Their products don’t take a lot of effort to wear or to apply. I also feel like they focus on playing off of your natural beauty, which is exactly what I needed for my five minute makeup routine! The products I used for this look were…

*Neutrogena Healthy Volume Mascara

*Neutrogena Shine Control Powder

*Neurtrogena Nourishing Eyeliner in Spiced Chocolate

*Neutrogena MoistureSmooth Color Stick

*Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisturizer with SPF 15

*Eyebrow color (I use a powder, but any eyebrow color product would work)

*Blush

Easy Five Minute Makeup Tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com

First, put the moisturizer on your face. Even when you have no time at all to put makeup on, putting moisturizer on is an essential step to take each day.

Easy Five Minute Makeup on www.girllovesglam.com

Next, put on the Shine Control Powder. In five minutes, you just don’t have time to put on foundation. The Shine Control Powder works to protect your skin and keep the shine down so that it still looks like you are wearing makeup on your face.

Makeup in Five Minutes on www.girllovesglam.com

Third is the Nourishing Eyeliner. I am really impressed with this eyeliner because it has a great texture and stays on all day long. When you do fast makeup, it is best to stay away from black eyeliner because it can be a lot more high maintenance than other colors. I chose a gorgeous brown color to work with. I put a line of eyeliner along my upper lash line and bottom lash line. I went back with the smudge brush that is on the opposite side of the eyeliner to smudge the eyeliner in the lower lash line.

Easy Makeup Routine on www.girllovesglam.com

Next is the Healthy Volume Mascara. This adds just the right amount of volume, without a bunch of clumps! Random side note… Can you put mascara on without opening your mouth? Apparently, I can’t!

Next, is when I will swipe a little blush on my cheeks and fill in my eyebrows. Both of these steps are really important because they help add dimension to your face and make you look more awake.

Lipstick Pencil on www.girllovesglam.com

The last step is adding some lip color. I am officially obsessed with this Neutrogena MoistureSmooth Color Stick. It goes on so easily and stays on all day. It also smells like grapefruit! It is all things good packed in one little stick.

I love that I can do this entire look with just five minutes to spare because I feel like it is so important to wear a little makeup. I feel so much more confident and feel like I get a lot more accomplished during my day if I take a little time to get ready.

Neutrogena teamed up with Hayden Panettiere to create great videos about her makeup routines that she uses for different situations. I was really inspired by her makeup routine that she uses on her day off. I love that she still has makeup on, but it is simple and played down.

Beginning on August 24th, there will be Target Beauty Concierge events happening at select Target stores so you can learn all about the best makeup for your routine. Check to see if your Target will be having this event, and what day it is coming to your store!

Neutrogena at Target on www.girllovesglam.com

What is your makeup routine like when you don’t have much time to get ready?

Check out these other fabulous makeup posts too!

3 Minute Face

Holiday Makeup Look

Zoey Deschanel Inspired Makeup

Easy Retro Fruit Nail Art

Easy Retro Fruit Nail Art with Polka Dots. Super simple instructions to create your own watermelon and pineapple nail art on www.girllovesglam.com

Sometimes I see something and I am instantly inspired to create something similar. This wasn’t always the case when it came to nail art. I used to see different nail art techniques and was then inspired to do something similar with my own twist to it, but never really anything that was inspired by something that wasn’t already nail art. It wasn’t until I went to go get my nails done by a crazy talented girl I work with that I realized that you could be inspired by anything for nail art. She did my nails inspired by an adorable grouping of pillows she had seen. It blew. me. away.

Once I saw that, I realized I could be inspired by everything around me. This was totally the case when I saw this Fresh Farmer’s Market Dress from Mod Cloth. The fruits, the retro feel, the polka dots… I mean, what isn’t there to be inspired by with this dress? Mod Cloth has a super cute blog that they did a post all about dresses with matching manicures and I KNEW I had to one for this dress!

Mod Cloth Farmer's Market Dress

 

I loved creating this nail art! The best part is that it was super easy and would be easy enough for anyone to do! To create the entire look, I used…

White nail polish

Black nail polish

Red nail polish

Yellow nail polish

White striper nail polish (nail polish with a small brush)

Green striper nail polish

Black striper nail polish

Yellow striper nail polish

Instead of using all of the different colors of striper nail polishes, you could use a very small paint brush. You will just make sure to have green nail polish and a lighter color of yellow nail polish in addition to the other regular nail polishes.

First, let’s talk about the watermelon nail art.

Easy watermelon nail art tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com

1. Paint your finger nail red. I used two coats of polish.

2. Paint the tip of your nail with the green striper.

3. Paint a white line right below the green tip using the white striper.

4. Add little black dots of polish on the red part of the nail for the watermelon seeds.

5. Paint over it with a clear top coat and you are done!

How easy is that?!

Now for the pineapple nail art…

Super easy tutorial to create pineapple nail art on www.girllovesglam.com

1. Paint finger nail dark yellow.

2. Use light yellow striper to make diagonal lines going across your nails.

3. Make diagonal lines going across your nails the other direction.

4. Paint little light yellow dots in the centers of each of the diamonds that are created by the diagonal lines.

5. Use the green striper to paint little lines on the very tip of the nail to look like the stem.

6. Paint over all of the nail with a clear top coat.

Almost as easy as the watermelon nail art!

For the polka dot finger nails, I just painted the nails black with two coats and went back with the white striper polish and made dots with it.

Fruit retro inspired nail art including watermelon and pineapple nails on www.girllovesglam.com

I am really happy with how these came out and think they would go PERFECTLY with that dress too! There is nothing more summertime than a fun retro inspired fruit salad manicure!

The time I lost over $900 got it back.

All photos were taken by the talented Ann of Cliq Photography.

Flower

God is real. He listens and answers prayers. I have seen his loving hand make itself known throughout my life. I have had incredible experiences that have strengthened my testimony that there is a Father in Heaven who really loves me. Those experiences have all been somewhat small, but have always meant a lot to me. Even my smallest answered prayer to find my keys or to be able to put my mind at ease so I can fall asleep has meant a lot to me and has given me the knowledge that he really is there and that he loves me.

This especially was the case when I lost $920 last week. We don’t use our debit card for very much. We choose to use cash for almost everything we need during the month because it keeps us more responsible about our budget and where my husband only gets paid once a month, it is our way to stay accountable so we have money for what we need all month long. Because we are in the middle of a move and have lived in two places for 4 weeks, we have had to budget a lot more money than we usually do. Typically we are able to live on much less cash than $940, which is exactly what I took out for this month.

Last Monday, I went to the bank and took out the $940 and put the envelope in my purse. Usually, I would go home and separate the money into different categories and lock it up for the month, but this month I got a phone call while I was at the bank that there was going to be a Realtor coming to show my house fairly soon so I went home and started cleaning my house while a neighbor boy mowed the lawn. After he was done, I took the money out of my purse and gave him $20. I hurried and threw my purse into my car, hopped in, and got out of the house before the Realtor came.

Throughout the day, I went to Home Depot, went to my parents’ house, and then even went zip lining! After zip lining, I went back to my parents’ house to pick up my daughter. We hung out there for a while and at about 9:30 pm I realized that I needed to buy milk and a few other groceries so we went to Walmart and got the essentials. When I got to the register to pay, I couldn’t find the envelope of money. I had an instantly sick feeling come over my entire body. I desperately dug through my purse, hoping that it would pop out of some unknown crevice… but that didn’t happen. I was so embarrassed! I was holding up a surprisingly long line that had built up at 10:30 pm. I hurried and paid for the groceries with my debit card and got out of the way. I pulled the cart over and dug through my purse one more time before making another loop through the store, following my tracks. The money was nowhere to be found. If you have ever been to Walmart after the sun has gone down, you will probably know what type of crowd is usually there. Not typically the type that would find money and then turn it in. I felt sick.

I got to the car and searched though it to see if the money had fallen out, but had no luck. I called my parents and cried to them while I told them my story. They sifted through their cars and their house, but didn’t find anything either. I had traded cars with my grandparents that day so I called them and had them search through my car to see if it had fallen in there somewhere, but they had no luck either. The money was gone.

We all spent a lot of time that evening on our knees in prayer. I sobbed and sobbed. I was afraid to tell my husband what had happened. I was scared about what we were going to do without the money we had planned to use to survive. I was disappointed in myself for losing that money. How did I let this happen?! I desperately prayed that I would feel comfort. Suddenly, I stopped crying. I felt like everything was going to be okay, but that I wouldn’t find the money by searching for it all over the place. I was finally able to get a little sleep that night.

Early the next morning, I called my husband who was on a business trip to tell him what had happened. I am so grateful for a loving and understanding husband who’s response to my tearful story was, “I thought you were going to tell me that something bad had happened!”. Um, Dave… Something bad HAD happened! He told me that money was replaceable and that he was just grateful that we were all safe.

I called Home Depot and Walmart to have them see if any money had been turned in, but had no luck. I had run out of options!

My parents were kind enough to offer to give us a loan so that we could survive and pay them back as we could. It was looking like things were going to be okay after all. I felt at peace about the whole situation. Then I got a phone call.

My grandpa called me and told me he and my grandma had gone to get ice cream and were looking at The Thrifty Nickle, a newspaper full of classified ads, and there was an ad about money being found. They gave me the phone number to call and I tried calling all weekend long. It went straight to voice mail every time.

My dad had suggested that I call the police station to see if any money had been turned in, so I called them Monday morning. The man I spoke to told me that he hadn’t had any money turned in, but he had just seen an ad in The Thrifty Nickle about money being found. Before I could tell him that I already had the phone number, he started telling me the phone number to call. It wasn’t the same number I had called before! I had him repeat the number and I quickly called. There was an answer this time!

The man on the other end of the line quizzed me all about the money I had lost. I could tell he had had a lot of phone calls. He wanted to be sure the money he had found was going to go to the right person. I went into very specific details about the money that had been lost and he said the most amazing words… “This is your money!”. I almost cried right then and there. He went on to tell me that he had found the money in the road. When I had paid the neighbor boy for mowing our lawn, I thought I put the money back in my purse, but it had fallen onto the back of my car and when I drove off, it fell off of my car into the road! It was actually in the road right in front of my house. The man who found the money owns the horse property right across the street from my house and had found it when he went to ride his horses.

After getting off the phone with him, I fell to my knees in humble gratitude to my Heavenly Father. One week after losing the money, it had been returned. Everything was going to be okay.

cali

I can’t even express how grateful I am for the honesty of that stranger. There are so many things that he could have done with that money. Instead, he spent his own money on taking out a classified ad so that the rightful owner could have that money.

It really is amazing how God makes himself known through the kindness of others. I can’t stop thinking about how incredible it is that that ad was seen in the first place. I don’t ever look at The Thrifty Nickel. I wouldn’t have ever found that ad by myself. I know that even if I wouldn’t have found the money, things would have been okay because of the peace I had felt after all of my prayers.

I am going to take this opportunity to be reminded about my Heavenly Father’s love and to spread my knowledge of that love to others. God loves you. He knows who you are and he wants you to come to him in prayer so he can help you. I also am going to take this opportunity to spread the word about honesty. Even if you find something small or a smaller amount of money, honesty is always the best policy. Return that money to customer service or look for the owner. You never know how badly that person needs what they lost. You will be blessed for your honesty. I promise.

Please share this story with your friends and with anyone you know who needs some hope in their life.

hummers

To learn more about my faith, read this post HERE.

Back to School A-Z Series

Back To School A-Z Series - The Ribbon Retreat Blog
Hurry, hurry…the school bus is coming! Grab your lunch box, your back pack and those good lookin’ school smiles because the bell is about to ring!

Can you believe that in just a couple of weeks, school is starting and our kiddos will be out the door racing to the bus, skipping to their brand new classes, running around with their friends at recess and meeting their new teachers? Crazy!!!

This time of year brings so much excitement…including new school supplies, new clothes and super cool shoes (that of course make you run faster and jump so much higher!) and don’t forget new teacher gifts that requires our creative minds and juices to run wild! Speaking of…have I got a surprise for YOU! I can’t even wait!!!

This month we have creative minds and juices running more than wild!!! All of August we are going to brush up on our alphabet skills creativity at it’s finest with 26 of the MOST creative and FABULOUS ladies I have ever met! I have teamed up with these blogger buddies to bring you the funnest series ever!!! We are celebrating the alphabet one letter at a time Back To School style!

Back To School, A-Z Series - The Ribbon Retreat Blog
Here’s how it works. Starting tomorrow, these lovely ladies are going to be getting crafty with their assigned letter of the alphabet! Their homework assignment was to come up with and to create a super awesome project that celebrates their letter. One day at a time, these innovative ladies will share their letter project with us, right here, front and center!! I can’t even tell you how much fun this is going to be!

Back To School A-Z Series - The Ribbon Retreat Blog
Are you ready for the letter line-up? Hold onto your hats!

“A” – Amber, Crazy Little Projects
“B” – Becky, Patchwork Posse
“C” – Christine, I Dig Pinterest
“D” – Amy, Ameroonie Designs
“E” – Bev, Flamingo Toes
“F” – Kim, Seven Thirty Three
“G” – Kimbo, A Girl and A Glue Gun
“H” – Meredith, Wait Til Your Father Gets Home
“I” – liZ, Simple Simon and Co.
“J” – Sky, Capital B
“K” – Emily, The Benson Street
“L” – Adrienne, Free Time Frolics
“M” – Michele, The Scrap Shoppe
“N” – McKenzie, Girl Loves Glam
“O” – Janica, JaniJo
“P” – Melanie, Find it, Make it, Love it
“Q” – Elizabeth, Simple Simon and Co.
“R” – Michelle, The Ribbon Retreat Blog
“S” – Mandy, Sugar Bee Crafts
“T” – Natalie, The Creative Mom
“U” – Becky, U Create
“V” – Kami, Sweet Charli
“W” – Terra, Mama Says Sew
“X” – Jessica, Running With Scissors
“Y” – Lisa, Mabey She Made It
“Z” – Jaime, Everyday Art

Wow, right?!? This is going to be spectacular and full of yummy creative goodness! So get those rulers out and your scissors sharpened because you are going to need them!

Your assignment??? Make sure to check in every day of every week in August, Monday – Saturday, to help us celebrate and learn more about our alphabet and how these incredible ladies transform their letter assignment into pure crafty genius!!!

And…what is an awesome series without an awesome giveaway??? Hehe…don’t you worry because this series is totally jammed packed with inspiring creativity and an INCREDIBLE giveaway too!!! But, you are going to have to be a little patient, because the giveaway won’t come until a little later, so stay tuned and make sure to check back every day!!!

See you tomorrow class, where we will learn all about the letter “A”!

Back To School, A-Z Series - The Ribbon Retreat Blog
Happy Creating & Happy A-Z Series!

Kissing Wrinkles Goodbye in 90 Seconds

I have a seriously gorgeous mom. I have always admired her beauty. I have loved how she has aged over my lifetime, but I know that she gets self conscious about her wrinkles on her face. She has mentioned it a few times over the years that she feels like she looks old and tired in pictures. I think that she is the only one thinking that when she looks at those pictures, but I wanted to be able to help her to feel more confident in her own skin.

When I learned about Alurent Anti-Aging + Instant Erasure Serum, I knew it would be a perfect fit for my mom. It is a new safe and effective anti-aging product! You probably think I thought it was going to be perfect for my mom because it is a serum that helps with wrinkles, right? It does do that, but the real reason why I knew it would be perfect for my mom is because it starts working almost instantly! You start seeing results in only 90 seconds!

My mom, bless her sweet soul is pretty antsy. She has a hard time sitting still not doing anything or spending too much time fussing with products that take forever to use. This is a perfect fit for my mom. All she has to do is put a little of the serum on her finger, apply it to the spots she wants to concentrate on reducing the wrinkles, and let it sit for 90 seconds. She only has to sit still for 90 seconds. Even she can handle that… with a little help from Words With Friends to distract her.

The great thing about this product is that it gets better over time too. We took before and after photos of my mom the very first day that she started using it, but the more she uses Alurent Anti-Aging + Instant Erasure Serum, the less noticeable her wrinkles become. It can be used with makeup too so she doesn’t have to wait to treat her wrinkles on days that she skips her makeup routine.

Who’s ready for some before and after photos of my mom?

I know that it isn’t a major change, but it is incredible how much of a change it brings in just 90 seconds. She looks so much more awake in her after photo. There were two places where the wrinkles changed the most, her forehead and her eyes.

That is pretty impressive for just 90 seconds, right?

Check out this other before and after photo that another user shared!

Alurent wants all of you to be able to try out this amazing serum too! It retails for $79.99 regularly, but they want to give you a major discount so that you can try it and fall in love with it as much as I have! You can use the code SHOP50 and get the Alurent Anti-Aging + Instant Erasure Serum for only $50 with free shipping on their website, HERE.

Now my mom doesn’t have to search through all of the wrinkle prevention products there are out there. She doesn’t even need to wait weeks to see results! She can use this and not have to worry about the rest!

Do you struggle with finding a good wrinkle prevention product?

For a limited time, use the special shopping code SHOP50 to discount your purchase of new Alurent Anti-Aging + Instant Erasure Serum to $50 plus free shipping at http://www.alurent.com/alurent-anti-aging-instant-erasure-serum.html. This is more than a $30 savings!

I received product to review through partnership with Alurent. All the opinions included in my review are my own.

How to Paint Cabinets and Add Hardware {Kitchen Makeover}

Holy flippin’ crap guys! I have been SO excited to show you my latest, craziest project that I decided to take on… my kitchen makeover!

How to paint cabinets and hardware on www.girllovesglam.com

Let me start by saying that it at first, my plan was to paint my kitchen (Crushed Ice from Sherwin Williams), get a new faucet, and add hardware to my cabinets. All of that happened, but as soon as I decided I wanted to put in a faucet, it became clear to me that I needed a new sink too. You can see my full sink transformation and tutorial to install a sink and faucet HERE. Once I installed my sink, I put my gorgeous new hardware up against my oak cabinets and my heart instantly dropped. It looked hideous. Like honest to goodness freaking ugly. Gorgeous brushed nickel isn’t supposed to go up against orange looking oak cabinets people. That’s when I got my next crazy idea… painting my cabinets. It couldn’t be that hard, right? I am going to share with you my tips on how to paint your kitchen cabinets and add hardware to them too! First though, let’s take a look back to my ugly kitchen before any of my kitchen transformation began.

Kitchen before makeover on www.girllovesglam.com

Orange looking oak cabinets, no hardware, dark paint, white sink, shiny faucet… it was all bad. It was totally worth the work. Let’s just take a look at the after before the tutorial… because we can…

Kitchen Makeover After on www.girllovesglam.com

Awe yeaaaahhh.

Now for the details. Let’s start with painting the cabinets. I chose to partner up with Sherwin Williams for this project because I knew that they would have exactly what I needed and would be as excited as I was about taking on this ugly kitchen of mine. They recommended using primer and their ProClassic paint for the actual paint color. ProClassic is used for trim and doors usually. It is a paint that is made for areas of higher traffic and can handle the wear and tear that happens with cabinets. I was SO impressed by it.

Sherwin Williams Primer Sherwin Williams ProClassic Paint

You just can’t get the expertise and quality that Sherwin Williams offers anywhere else. Every single person I talked to was able to help me with all of my questions no matter how intense or trivial they were. Their customer service seriously just can’t be beat!

Kitchen Cabinet Remodel Tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com

First thing is first. Take those cabinet doors off. I put a piece of tape with a number on each of the doors and a piece of tape with the same number in each cabinet where that door belonged. You can leave the drawers in if you want, but I chose to take the drawers out too. I put numbered tape on all of the drawers too. Go over all of the surfaces with sandpaper just enough to take the shine off. I tried using the liquid deglosser stuff, but I wasn’t impressed at all. Nothing is quite like the real deal. Just use a sandpaper that isn’t super gritty. Wipe off any dust with a Clorox wipe.

Kitchen cabinet makeover tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com

Next comes the paint! I painted every service with two coats of primer. When I was painting around edges and in the grooves of the cabinet doors, I would use a paint brush first, then go back over the whole thing with a small roller so that there weren’t any brush lines. When you are painting the doors, I HIGHLY recommend using painting pyramids. I found the best price on them, HERE. They keep your cabinet doors off of the ground so that you don’t get marks on them if the paint is still a little tacky. I know a lot of people take the hardware off of their cabinets before painting, but I was given a little tip from Sherwin Williams to just try taping off the hardware and painting around the hardware that can be painted around. It saved me SO MUCH TIME by doing it that way. By the time I did one coat of primer on all of the cabinets, I was able to flip them around and do the other sides of the cabinets because I was painting them out in my hot garage. I did both coats of primer and let them sit and dry overnight.

When it came to painting with the actual paint, I used the same technique with the paint brush and the roller. I recommend painting everything with two coats of paint too. Let the paint dry for at least 12 hours between the two coats and let the second coat dry even a little longer before moving on to putting the hardware on. The great thing about using the ProClassic paint, is that it doesn’t need a coat of polyurethane after paint like a lot of paint would require. It is like skipping an entire step all together!

Now for adding the hardware…

How to add hardware to cabinets easily on www.girllovesglam.com

My dad is a genius. I asked him to come help me put my hardware on because I was really nervous about putting the hardware on wrong! He came up with a great way to make sure that all of the hardware would be in the same place on each of my cabinet doors. He got an L bracket and taped a piece of cardboard to it. We measured out where we wanted the hardware to be and stuck a nail through that spot. I lined up the L bracket on the corner of each cabinet door and stuck it with the nail so that my dad could follow along behind me and drill holes into each door. The drawers were a lot more challenging. Almost every drawer was a different size so we had to approach each drawer differently. We measured how far apart the holes have to be and found the center of each drawer and and put that template on and measure where the holes have to be. We drilled the holes where the template said to put them. I followed behind my dad as he was drilling the holes and I put the hardware on each cabinet and drawer. Can we just take a moment of silence for how gorgeous this hardware is?

How to paint kitchen cabinets and add hardware on www.girllovesglam.com

The hardware matches my kitchen faucet perfectly because it is from Moen too! Did you even know that Moen made hardware? I had no idea, but it is perfection! You can see all of the Moen hardware HERE. I am blown away by the quality of this hardware and just how perfectly it matches my faucet and sink. Once I put all of the hardware on, I went and found where each cabinet and drawer belonged and I hung them up back in their places!

Kitchen Cabinet Makeover on www.girllovesglam.com

Can I get an amen?! I mean seriously. I can’t keep myself out of the kitchen. I find myself just standing in there because it is such a bright, happy place to be. I feel inspired to spend time in my kitchen and create fabulous meals! I seriously can’t get over how much I love my kitchen now.

Now for the real kicker… right as I was in the middle of getting stuff together for this kitchen makeover, my husband was offered a new job… In another city. I was now going to be making over this kitchen for someone else to enjoy. It was very bitter sweet putting so much love into a kitchen that I knew I wouldn’t be able to enjoy for very long, but I loved thinking about the family who would be able to use this kitchen and fill it with memories in the future. Here is other crazy news too. I think this kitchen makeover was such a hit that it sold my house! We accepted an offer on our house just six days after putting it on the market!

So whether you are just moving into your house, you have lived there for years and hate your kitchen, or you are wanting to put your house on the market soon, I HIGHLY recommend painting your cabinets and adding hardware to them! It makes such a difference and it is a totally affordable project that you can do yourself. Once I got the cabinets done, the hardware on, the sink put in, the faucet installed, and the walls painted, it felt like a completely different room. It looks like a real kitchen remodel instead of just a kitchen update. So here I am telling you… if you are on the fence about updating your kitchen, DO IT! It takes a few days of your life, but it is so worth it in the end! So jump right in and face your fears! Make that ugly kitchen of yours beautiful!

How to paint cabinets and hardware on www.girllovesglam.com

Don’t forget to check out these other awesome DIY projects and makeovers too!

How to install a kitchen sink tutorial on www.girllovesglam.com

Living Room Makeover

Enclosed Porch Makeover

Mouthwash with style?

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Listerine for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Mouthwash with style? Yep! Listerine has officially stepped up their game. They wanted to create a bottle with fun, colorful chevron-patterned designs that are easy to incorporate into your decor so you don’t have to worry about stuffing away the mouth wash after you use it each time, because let’s be honest… Once the mouthwash goes in the cabinet, it is long forgotten.

If I don’t have to put away the Listerine after each use, I won’t forget to use it! It is nice because the chevron pattern mixes well with the chevron pattern on my cabinets. It is a perfect fit! I have loved using Listerine because of how good it makes my mouth feel. These bottles come in four different flavors too. They come in Cool Mint, Fresh Mint, Arctic Mint, and Fresh Citrus. My favorite way to start the day is with the Fresh Mint flavor. It helps wake me up! The Fresh Citrus is great to use during the day when I just need a little freshening up. No matter what flavor you pick, you can rest assured that any choice is the right choice because Listerine is the #1 dentist recommended brand and it gives you a cleaner, healthier mouth!

You can find these Listerine bottles exclusively at Target! You can even Save Now with Target Cartwheel. Have you ever tried the Target Cartwheel app? It is pretty much a life changer. If you haven’t tried it, try it out for the first time when you clip the Listerine coupon on it!

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What is your favorite flavor of Listerine?

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