Oasis Voxbox Review

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Hello friends!

It’s no secret that summer is my favorite season. Sunshine, warm temps, trips to the Lake.. carefree days enjoying life. What could be better?

I was thrilled to receive the Oasis Voxbox from Influenster. Packed with goodies perfect for summertime, I couldn’t wait to test them all out!

In case you’ve never heard of it, Influenster is a  website where you can discover new products, write honest reviews, create personalized lists of your favorite products or create wishlists, earn badges, participate in campaigns, and test out products for free! Anyone can join!

Click here to sign up and get started: http://www.influenster.com/r/1073568

I’ve been using these products for the past month, and I have to say, this was an awesome voxbox!

 

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Oasis Voxbox from Influenster 

*Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are my own*

 

Vera Wang Embrace Fragrances

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Vera Wang Embrace Fragrances – MSRP: $29.99
These fragrances were delightful. Light, refreshing, romantic, and sophisticated, they were perfect for summertime. The Green Tea ad Pear Blossom was my favorite of the two samples. A few spritzes on the wrist, the back of the neck, and behind each knee was enough to last all day. I loved them for a day out with my family and I think they would be perfect for date night, too.

Overall: 5 stars out of 5.

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Rolled up jeans, a versatile tank blouse, classic heels, and Vera Wang Embrace for a day out.
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A pretty dress, pearls, and Vera Wang Embrace for a perfect date night

Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-in-1 Primer

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Eva Hair NYC 10 in 1 Primer – MSRP: $11.99 for 6oz.
My long, red hair is my signature and I’m pretty picky about the products I use. I want products that are inexpensive, quality, and that actually do what they claim to do. You ladies (and gents) with long hair know how easy it is for your hair to get tangled up and how painful it is to comb, pic, or brush it out. I absolutely loathe washing my hair because it gets so tangled, no matter how much conditioner I use. In addition to that, the humidity of summer and the sun can make my hair frizzy and dry. Not a cute look.

I have had success with this brand before and I was happy to test this product out. First of all, it smells amazing… and the scent lasts in your hair throughout the day. Second, a few spritzes all over after washing my hair, allowed me to comb it out with no hassles. Seriously, no tangles, no fuss, no drama. It helped me achieve beautiful hair. I don’t typically use a blow dryer, I let my hair air dry.. it still took a long time for my hair to dry, but it did help prevent frizziness, and my hair was shiny and soft. I love this and definitely recommend it to everyone who has long hair!!

Overall: 5 stars out of 5.

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Hello gorgeous hair! 

Welch’s Fruit Rolls

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Welch’s Fruit Rolls – MSRP: $2.99
I love snacking and it’s a bit of a miracle that these three fruit rolls sat on the counter for a few days before we devoured them. All three of these were delicious and fruity. They each had that real fruit flavor and they have 100% of the recommended value of Vitamin C. Win-Win. Strawberry was our favorite flavor, hands down. They are the perfect size to stash in your purse or desk… healthy snacking on the go, made easy! We’ll be buying these on our next trip to the grocery store.

Overall: 5 stars out of 5. 

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These fit perfectly in my clutch for snacking on the go!

Aloha Protein Bar in Mocha

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Aloha Protein Bar in Mocha MSRP: $2.50
Love at first sight. Or should I say love at first bite? haha! When I opened the box and saw that I received the Mocha flavor, it was apparent that Influenster knew my soul. I am a coffee and chocolate lover, so what could be better than mocha? When you open the wrapper, it looks just like a candy bar and smells like chocolate!! I shared this with my son and we both loved it! It was tasty and filling! …and my son is a picky eater, so for him to say he liked it, means something. These protein bars are perfect for a quick lunch on the go, an in-between meals snack, or before or after an intense workout! I will definitely be looking for these at the store!

Overall: 5 stars out of 5.

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Yum.

Covergirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation

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Covergirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation MSRP: $9.99-$10.99
And then there was make-up. I cannot say enough good things about this foundation. First of all, it goes on light, but gives you full coverage. So, you look flawless, feel beautiful and confident, while also still feeling like yourself. This foundation gave my skin a radiant glow, lasted all day, even through my workout. I have sensitive skin, but this wasn’t harsh and it didn’t make me breakout. It also has a slight citrusy scent that is refreshing. This foundation is perfect for summer! I’ve been wearing it everyday and I’ve found myself putting it on, even when I’m just lounging around the house. I love it!

Overall: 5 stars out of 5.

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Casual make-up look thanks to Covergirl.
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Flawless make-up and coffee with Groot.

Evolution Fresh 

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Evolution Fresh Green Devotion MSRP: $2.99-$4.99
I redeemed my coupon at Kroger and chose the Green Devotion juice to try. (It was the only one they had.) Evolution Fresh makes it easy to be healthy on the go. This tasted very earthy. As I was looking through other Influensters’ photos and reviews, I realized that Evolution Fresh has many options to choose from, including fruity flavors. This one wasn’t for me, but I am interested in trying some of the other flavors.

Overall: 3 stars out of 5.

 

That is everything that was in the Oasis Voxbox. I loved testing out all of these products! Have you tried any of these? Did you receive this Voxbox? Leave a comment and let me know your thoughts.

 

Summer Tone Up 2017 | Week 4 Check in | #TIU

Good morning friends!

It’s Monday already! Yesterday marks one month until my birthday… one more month of the 20’s decade.

Crazy.

Today is also the start of week 5 of the Summer Tone Up Fitness challenge. That means it’s time for a check – in… and measurements.

I will admit, I was nervous taking these measurements. There’s something frightening about having to face the reality of the tape measure. Last night I felt thin and confident… but after a few hours of sleep and 2 cups of coffee, I wasn’t feeling like I was going to enjoy what the tape measure had to say.

Before I reveal the results, let’s discuss how the week went.

I started this week by honoring my body. I rolled out the mat, put on my Spotify playlist, and just moved. It was absolutely perfect and exactly what I needed.

Because I found myself getting tired of doing the same workouts every week for this challenge, I found myself gravitating toward Tracy Campoli videos. I love her workouts and it was nice to switch it up. Sometimes that’s exactly what you need to refresh your mind and body.

In addition to that, I’ve been doing a separate booty challenge that my friend, Kaddie is hosting. That is killer, but is definitely helping accelerate my results.

I attended both Live workouts this week and they were so good! I love working out with Karena and Katrina in real time. It’s so fun!

I worked out every single day, and I’m getting stronger and more flexible… which is apparent in my yoga challenges.

I have to say, if you are struggling with accountability and motivation, sign up for Instagram and join a yoga challenge. Even on the days when you don’t want to do anything, you’ll find that you push yourself to get it done because you have to post your picture to participate in the challenge. And, it helps you ease out of your comfort zone. Just look at that featured image of me in a handstand. I have this irrational fear of being upside down… I don’t know why, I don’t know where it comes from.. but it’s ridiculous. Anyway, in doing these yoga challenges, I’ve been, in a way, forced out of my comfort zone. I say “in a way” because I am choosing to participate in the yoga challenges. Had I not faced this fear and kept only doing the “safe” poses, I never would have experienced the joy of this posture. Now, I am far from being able to flip myself up and I am not quite at balancing on my own.. I need the assistance of the tree or a wall.. but I’m getting stronger and more confident. If you follow me on Insta, you saw that I was able to get myself into the EPK posture.. what? Amazing! While Yoga isn’t about “doing” the pose, it still feels pretty awesome when find that you are able to do more than before, as with anything in life. 🙂

Anyway, below shows you how I felt on Friday night…

 

And now for the results…

I was surprised and it is definitely a testament to “trust the process.”

I lost .75 inches around my stomach; .50 inches around my waist; .75 inches off my hips; .50 inches off each arm; I gained .50 inches on one leg, but lost .50 inches on the other – which is fine because now they are the same. Basically about 3 inches overall. Not too shabby. Since I tossed my scale a few years ago, and I’m not planning on going to the doctor anytime soon, I don’t know if I’ve lost actual pounds, but I’m not too concerned about that.

So I’m pretty happy with this and motivated to kick it up a few notches the next few weeks. I’m planning on making time for my Tracy Anderson workouts again and keeping up with the rest of the challenge. 🙂

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13 Inspiring Quotes on the Power of Lifelong Learning

Hello friends! Happy Sunday!

Can you believe we are about halfway through August already? It’s truly amazing how quickly time seems to pass as you get older.

Many kids are heading back to school this week and I thought it would be the perfect time to share more of my favorite inspirational quotes this week on the topic of education.

Learning is truly a lifelong journey and although it sounds cliche, the older I get the more I realize how little I actually know.

Isn’t it funny how we can hear our parents’ and grandparents’ voices in the back of our minds every now and then during different times in our lives?

I will say that it is infinitely harder for me to focus and learn something new now that I’m older. When I was younger, learning came so easy. Now I have to actually work for it.

But one thing remains the same, my love for the library. It is still one of my favorite places to be; I could spend all day just browsing the shelves and picking out interesting titles, perusing a few books here and there. That’s my idea of an amazing day!

Anyway, without further ado…

Let’s jump right in.

 

The capacity to learnis a gift.The ability to learnis a skill.The willingness to learnis a choice.

 

“Being educated is the difference between wishing you could do some good and being able to do some good.”
-Russell M Nelson

 

“Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”
-Malcom X

 

Learning is the only thingthe mind never exhaustsnever fearsand

 

“Education is not preparation for life; Education is life itself.”
-John Dewey

 

“The direction in which education starts a man will determine his future life.”
-Plato

 

Never forget that intelligence rules the worldandignorance carries the burden.Therefore,remove yourself as far as possiblefrom ignoranceandseek as far as possibleto be intelligent.

 

“Education’s purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.”
-Malcolm Forbes

 

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
-Nelson Mandela

 

I amthe wisest man alive,for I know one thing,and that isthat I know nothing.

 

“Education isn’t something you can finish.”
-Isaac Asimov

 

“Wisdom is not a product of schooling but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.”
-Albert Einstein

 

Knowing yourselfis the beginningof all wisdom.

 

 

For more inspiration check out:

13 Quotes to Inspire a Life of Learning

Road Trip Adventure and New Additions to the Family

Hello friends!

Happy Saturday! I hope you are all enjoying a relaxing day.

This past week we took a little road trip. Sometimes you just need to climb in the car, roll the windows down, and cruise.

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Enjoying my #freesample of Red Bull Summer Edition Grapefruit from Smiley360.

It was a beautiful day, sun shining, blue skies, 80 degrees.

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We visited with family all day and came home with four beautiful plants.

Meet Francine.

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A spunky spider plant. She has four new starts growing, so once she has acclimated to her new home, I’ll be able to clip them and have new plants!

 

Meet Agnes.

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A peace lily. Just a gorgeous plant that has made her home on our dining room table.

 

Meet Ebenezer.

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I was humbled to receive Ebenezer. He is a Christmas Cactus that is right at home in our den, in front of our 1970’s world map.

And Tyrion… a 4 ft. Candelabra Cactus. You don’t get to meet him just yet. We need to re -pot him first.

And those are the newest members of our family.

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The Gorgeous Sunset

Summer Tone Up 2017 | Week 3 Check in | #TIU

Hello friends! Happy Monday!

Week 3 of the Summer Tone Up has ended… it was a little rough for me. If you read my inspirational post yesterday, you know that I had a few setbacks this past week.

First, I somehow hurt my ankle. I don’t know how, but I got up from the table, started walking, and instantly felt a sharp twinge. Nice. I wrapped it up that evening and did a workout, albeit modified and slow.

 

Then as if that wasn’t enough, I woke up to a slight tickle, ache feeling in my throat. You know the one… the inkling that if you don’t start intensely taking precautions, you’re going to end up out of commission for the next week and a half to two weeks.

Cute.

hahaha!

So, I took it easy. I figured a little bit of working out was better than going full tilt, getting sick, and being benched for up to two weeks.

It worked. I’m not sick. My ankle is fine, but I should probably take the 5 minutes to wrap it before working out each day.

But, I was supposed to take measurements yesterday.

That would have been a bad idea. I have bulked, which is normal for me in this stage of fitness challenges. I always, without fail, bulk up and then so long as I trust in the process and keep going, I slim out.

In addition to that, I have been ravenous, and I may have been indulging in more carbs than normal.

So… for the sake of my well being, I opted out of measurements yesterday. I will take them next week. 🙂

I have found myself getting a little tired of this challenge. Yesterday’s workout was once again beach ballin’ + a run. I wasn’t feeling it. I opted for music and a nice yoga sesh instead.

Today I’m feeling much the same way. So, I will do some HIIT, just not the TIU video. I get tired of doing the same videos, the same moves, over and over again. I need to switch it up and have variety.

In no way am I a fitness expert or fitness model.

I’m an Ohio gal, a mom, a wife, who has a deep passion for fitness and health.

And that is why I love these check-ins and despite thinking that I didn’t have much to say and wouldn’t write this post today, I decided to do it anyway. To show you that if you feel tired, discouraged, uninspired, unmotivated.. you’re not alone. We all feel that way from time to time.

And it’s okay to whine and complain for a little bit… then you stop. Take a deep breath. Suck it up. Put on your workout clothes, and get it done. Just like anything else in this life. Sometimes we have to do things we don’t want to do. But we do it anyway. And guess what? You’re spending time doing it, you may as well change your attitude about it. Be grateful and smile because you are alive and you can move. Or be grateful and smile because you sucked it up, got it done, and now you can move on with your day.

Week 4, I’m coming for ya. 🙂

Read This When You’re Feeling Discouraged.

Good morning Friends! Happy Sunday!

I hope you are all doing well and enjoying your summer! We’ve had a little break from the rain and have enjoyed a few days of sunshine and comfortable temperatures.

Our days are spent trying to enjoy our last weeks of summer before school starts. But this past week, I had a little setback. First, I somehow hurt my ankle. Not sure how or why. I couldn’t blame the weather and I hadn’t done much in the way of cardio that day. But, these things happen. I’ve noticed as I’ve gotten older that all it takes is moving wrong to upset something in my body. And by wrong, I mean just simply moving. haha. This issue was easily fixed by wrapping the ankle. And then I ended up wrapping both ankles because they were both sore… fun times. I always joke that if some part of my body didn’t hurt, then I would think something was seriously wrong. hahaha!

Then, I woke up earlier this week with a sore-ish throat. It wasn’t allergies.. It was that nice inkling, “Hey! You’re about to get really sick unless you ease back..” Because I don’t want to get sick, I immediately started taking precautions. I drank the free samples of Ester-C I got from BzzAgent, I popped some ibuprofen, gargled salt water, sprayed the red sore throat spray all over, and enjoyed some fisherman’s friend drops. I also eased back on my workouts a little and tried to rest more.

Seemed to help. The throat thing went away.

Today is also supposed to be measurement day. Hahahahhaha…. sigh.

I can feel the bulkiness in my body. This happens every challenge around week 3 and 4. Combined with having to take it easy this week, and a ravenous appetite.. yeah. No.

Ten years ago, this would have left me pretty discouraged. I would have been upset and l would have let it ruin my day.

But time, perspective, and a sense of humor give clarity.

It’s not the end of the world.

I’m pretty fortunate, it could always be worse.

And, my favorite, in the grand scheme of the universe, this is a blip and completely insignificant.

At some point, we all face setbacks. And it’s easy to become discouraged.

You’re not alone. We all feel this way at one point or another.

So today, I wanted to share some of my favorite nuggets of wisdom to help inspire you to rise above whatever you’re facing in your life, and move forward with a new perspective and a little humor.

Almost everything will work againif you unplug it for a few minutes...including you.

 

You cannot always control what goes on outside,But you can always controlwhat goes on inside

 

Add subheading-

 

You either get bitter or you get better. It's that simple.You either take what has been dealt to youand allow it to make you a better person,or you allow it to tear you down.The choicedo

 

Beware of giving up too soon.Our emotionsare not reliable guides.

 

No matter the situation,neverlet your emotionsoverpoweryour intelligence. (2)

 

You ought to be thankfula whole heaping lotfor the people and placesyou're luckyyou're not. (1)

 

Don't take life too seriously.You'll never get out of it alive.

 

Manyof the great achievementsof the worldwere accomplished by people who were tired and discouraged...peoplewho kept on working!

 

Maybe swearing will help.

 

mind3

Summer Tone Up 2017 | Weeks 1 and 2 Check in | #TIU

Hello once again friends!

The Summer Tone Up Challenge started on July 17. My muscles have been s o r e.. and I’ve already noticed a change in my body and my mind. It feels so good to challenge myself with intense exercise.

 

…And let me say, it’s a challenge to show up for cardio some days, especially back to back.

But, I suck it up, and get it done. September will be here soon and I am determined to meet my goal. I also am loving the live workouts on Instagram! So fun!

In addition, I’ve been adding in all the yoga challenges and my Tracy Anderson work.

So, all in all, I’d say week 1 and week 2 were a success!

I happy to move forward and challenge myself in week 3!

And ladies, it is not too late to join the challenge! Sign up at ToneItUp.com and join me! Leave me a comment if you do. 🙂

Follow me and my fitness journey on Instagram. I’m @CrimsnMacchiato

See you there!


-A

 

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Oasis Voxbox Unboxing | Influenster

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*Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.*

Hello again friends! I was so excited to find out that Influenster was sending me the Oasis Voxbox! This box is perfect for summer and I can’t wait to dive in!

If you’ve never heard of Influenster, it is a really great website where you can discover new products, write honest reviews, create personalized lists of your favorite products or create wishlists, earn badges, participate in campaigns, and test out products for free! Anyone can join!

 

Click here to sign up and get started: http://www.influenster.com/r/1073568

 

Let’s get started with the unboxing! 

 

 

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Vera Wang Embrace Fragrances

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“A collection of fragrances that evokes the intimacy and emotion of Vera Wang, capturing moments in time to be cherished & embraced.  Sophisticated. Intimate. Romantic.”

I love perfume and the Vera Wang brand exudes elegance. I am excited to test out these fragrances!

 

Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-in-1 Primer and $2 off coupon

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“With 10 benefits in 1 miracle potion, this hair primer does it all: detangles, nourishes, strengthens, softens, cuts drying time, adds shine, reduces frizz, and protects against damage. Argan oil feeds hair with vitamins and nutrients, while sunflower seed oil repairs, nourishes and protects.”

I cannot wait to try this out in my hair! The humidity has been a struggle this summer and my long hair is always getting tangled. I normally love a good messy hair day, but it’s no fun to comb out! haha! I’ve had a good experience with this brand, so my expectations are high. I’m also happy that I received a coupon! 🙂

 

Welch’s Fruit Rolls

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“Snacking lovers everywhere can now Unroll the Fun with NEW Welch’s Fruit Rolls! Welch’s Fruit Rolls have fruit as the first ingredient and feature 100% of the daily recommended value of Vitamin C. Try all three mouthwatering varieties: Berry, White Grape Strawberry, and Tropical Punch.”

One word: Yum! Welch’s is known for being a quality brand and they have tasty snack options. I’m pretty sure these fruit rolls will be devoured in a short period of time.

 

Aloha Protein Bar in Mocha

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“Aloha’s organic protein bars are full of 14 grams of plant-based protein and free of gluten, dairy, soy, and stevia – everything you need, and nothing you don’t.”

Influenster knows my soul. This protein bar has been calling my name ever since I opened the box. I can’t wait to give it a try!

 

Covergirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation

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“Covergirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation is a full coverage foundation that provides the ideal balance between a matte and radiant finish with healthy skincare built in. With an SPF of 20, this skin-loving formula is infused with a trio of vitamins that reduces stressed micro texture via hydration, for a look that’s healthier than bare skin. Covergirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation continues to hydrate the skin throughout the day by attracting and holding in moisture, as well as managing sebum to maintain a fresh, healthy look.” 

I’ve recently started using liquid foundation under my normal make-up for more coverage. I am looking forward to seeing how this foundation looks, feels, and lasts.

 

Evolution Fresh Coupon

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“Evolution Fresh is passionate about inspiring people to thrive. We craft our premium cold-pressed juices using the most flavorful fruits and veggies to give our fans juice that’s both nutritious and satisfying. We simply take what nature gives us and press it deliciously, for you.”

I love a good juice that helps me reach my daily intake of fruits and veggies. Can’t wait to test it out!

 

And that’s it! Did you receive this box? Have you tried any of these products? Leave a comment letting me know your thoughts!


A

 

9 Inspiring Quotes to Let Go and Move Forward

Hello Friends! Happy Sunday!

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I hope you are all enjoying a relaxing weekend. Here in Ohio, we finally have a stretch of sunshine and comfortable temperatures. It’s fantastic!

This summer has flown by.. Here we are at the end of July already! A new month of opportunities and possibilities await. It’s the perfect time to let go of anything that is no longer serving us. Any anxiety, stress, worry, material items, emotional baggage, negativity, etc.. let it go.

Start the new month fresh, feeling uplifted and rejuvenated. I’ve compiled some of my favorite quotes to inspire you to do just that!

 

The root of all sufferingisattachment.

 

“Let go…
How would your life be different if you learned to let go of things that have already let go of you? From relationships long gone, to old grudges, to regrets, to all the ‘could’ve’ and ‘should’ve,’ to the dead friendships you still hang on to..
Free yourself from the burden of a past you cannot change.”
-Dr. Steve Maraboli

 

One of the happiest moments in lifeis when youfind the courage to let go of what you cannot change.

 

“Letting go means to come to the realization that some people are a part of your history, but not a part of your destiny.”
-Dr. Steve Maraboli

 

When you forgive,you heal.When you let go,you grow.

 

“Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go.”
-Anaïs Nin

 

Anythingthat costs you your peaceis too expensive.Let it go..jpg

 

“If you can’t do anything about it then let it go. Don’t be a prisoner to things you can’t change.”
-Tony Gaskins

 

Let goorbe dragged.

MegaVoxbox Reveal | Influenster

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*Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary from Influenster. All opinions are my own*

 

Hello friends!

A few weeks ago I attended an Influenster Twitter party. It was a lot of fun and I brought a lot of sass. Well, it paid off! I won a MegaVoxbox! I was pretty excited!

*Side note: Influenster is a great website where you can discover new products, write honest reviews, create personalized lists of your favorite products or create wishlists, earn badges, participate in campaigns, and test out products for free! Anyone can join! Interested? Click my reference link to sign up and get started: http://www.influenster.com/r/1073568

I was pleasantly surprised on Wednesday when I discovered a box on my doorstep! My MegaVoxbox had arrived!

Today, I thought it would be fun to do a reveal of all the goodies that were inside! Let’s get started!

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Aussie Headstrong Volume Hairspray

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The first thing I saw when I opened the box was this hairspray. I love Aussie products, most of them smell like grapes! This has a max hold, plus volume (80’s Axle Rose, Welcome to the Jungle, eat your heart out hahaha. True story: 10 years ago we had an 80’s day at work and Axle’s hair in this video was my inspiration. Sorry, I don’t have any pictures to show you, but it was pretty epic.) This one has Australian Aloe, Jojoba Oil, and Sea Kelp in it. I’m pretty excited to use it and see if my curls last when my husband rolls all the windows down in the car. I’ll get back to you on that. 😉

 

Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer

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I’ve already used this and I love it! You just put this on after your shower, pat dry, and you are good to go! It smells fantastic, like coconut, talk about beach vibes! It keeps my skin hydrated and soft all day! I will definitely be purchasing this product!

 

Sinful Shine with Gel Tech Step 1 – Rendevous

 

I’m a big fan of the Sinful Colors nail polish! It’s inexpensive and quality nail lacquer. This color is pretty and I always see ladies wearing it. It isn’t a color I would have chosen for myself, but I was excited to try it out. It’s very different from what I’m used to (If and when I paint my nails, I stick with reds and pinks normally.) and I love it! It’s perfect for summer.

I painted my nails Wednesday evening. I used two coats of this color, no top coat. My polish hasn’t chipped, yet. That’s pretty good.

 

Plackers Flossers Fruit Smoothie Swirl

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Flossers are a great invention! We love them in our house. We usually get the mint ones. These will be perfect for my son. And, truth be told, I’ll probably test one out, too.

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water Sample

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I’m excited to test this out. I’ve seen many reviews and blog posts about the magic that is micellar water. I can’t wait to see how it works for me!

 

And that’s it! 🙂

See you guys soon!

-A