Thursday, December 5, 2013

Elf On a Shelf, Don't You Understand I'm Busy Enough?!

After I put the three little ones to bed, I was beginning to unwind by scrolling mindlessly through facebook, when I noticed Kalista standing behind me.  I turned to see her sweet face, and I noticed her little chin was trembling.  She quickly blurted out, "Can we get an elf?"  A little confused I asked her what she meant by that.  She took a deep breath as to hold back her tears and said, "you can buy a little elf at the store, and he is real, and will move around and do fun things at night while you are sleeping."  Aaaaaahhhh one of those I thought.  My impressionable little girl has somehow come to know the ever popular and somewhat annoying fad of Elf On a Shelf.

Then all at once she gazed up at the ceiling as tears started rolling down her cheeks.  I pulled my girl in to my arms and asked her to tell me what was the matter and what this little elf had to do with it.  Apparently, her group of friends at school assemble every morning and trade stories about what their little elf did through the night.  It usually involves finding them on toilets, or baking cookies, or making messes, and many other elaborate mischievous elf scenarios.  What broke her almost eight year old heart was that, in her words, she had nothing to add.  No fun stories.  No elves visiting our house.  Nothing.  The feeling of being left out of fun conversations and forgotten by a little elf was too much pain for her tender heart to handle. I held her as her tears flowed while I contemplated what I could say that would ease her sadness.

{Kalista at 3 years old}

I thought I might get away from having to give in to this demanding production of thinking of new activities for a little doll to get into trouble every night.  Didn't I have enough to worry about already?  I mean, Christmas is only a few weeks away and between getting all their gifts bought and wrapped, Christmas parties, putting a tree up, decorating inside and outside, going to see the lights, holiday baking, and many of the other wonderful yet time consuming things that go along with this time of year, I'm not sure how much more I can take.  Now, little elf, you are telling me now I have to add coming up with unique activities for you to do nightly on my never ending list of things that need to get done?!  Don't you understand that I have a hard enough time just keeping up with my laundry and reminding my kids to brush their teeth?  Let alone the already long to-do list that goes with this wonderful time of the year.

I'm really not a Grinch or a Scrooge either; I actually love Christmas.  I love to make special memories with my family, and to see my kids' imaginations broaden with all the wonderment of a magical Santa.  But I didn't want to expand the Christmas season to include this little bothersome elf.

So in-between sobs, she asked if we could please get an elf.  The thing with Kalista you have to know, is that she doesn't want or ask for much.  Her Christmas list this year consists of 7 things total.  They were all very reasonable things too!  Like, skinny jeans, a math book, duct tape, and a Monster High Doll.  She has saved her birthday money for the last 3 years.  She also rarely asks for things in the store.  So the desperation of wanting the joy and fun that comes with this mischievous little elf was genuine for her, and not just for theatrics.  So after a short pause, and annoyed as I am with this little elf, I responded with, "I'll see what I can do."  That seemed to do the trick.  Her waterworks ceased, she wrapped her arms around my neck, looked up at me with her tear filled eyes and exclaimed, "thank you Mom!"  Then she crawled out of my lap and wandered back to bed.

Uh oh, what did I get myself in to?? And how much do those stupid elves cost again?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A Few of My Faves

So I know I haven't posted much beauty related here on the blog, but I thought it might be fun to let everyone know a few of my current favorite beauty items.  I have been interested in makeup for as early as I can remember.  I have been doing friends and family's makeup for special events like dances, pictures, and even weddings for years.  I even thought I wanted to go to Cosmetology school for a while.  But where my real passion is makeup, I didn't care to mess with hair cuts, colors, perms, and nails.  If I could ever afford it to stock up on a decent makeup kit, I would do freelance makeup artistry.  But for now, I just do it for fun.

The first couple of my faves, is from Tarte Cosmetics-

Amazonian clay full coverage
airbrush foundation

Amazonian clay full coverage airbrush foundation -

I'm seriously in love with this stuff.  It goes on so smooth, and does really well with my sensitive skin.  Since it is a full coverage foundation, it covers my blemishes really well without being too cakey.  It is also very fine that it almost feels creamy going on.  The price tag is a bit steep considering I'm used to buying drug store makeup, but the quality is so much better than the L'Oreal mineral foundation I have been using for years. I also think it will last much longer because I don't have to use as much. My only wish is that the airbuki bamboo powder foundation makeup brush that is supposed to go with it wouldn't be so expensive.  After spending almost $40 on foundation, spending another $26 on the brush is way too steep for me.

Next is the-

Amazonian clay finishing powder

smooth operator™ micronized clay finishing powder with PM20™

I got a sample of this when I purchased the Amazonian Clay Airbrush Foundation.  I wasn't too excited about it, and waited a few weeks of having it before I even tried it.  I'm only glad I waited that long because it means it will last me that much longer before I have to buy more!  This stuff is am-a-zing.  It goes over your makeup and holds it in place so that your foundation lasts all day.  My favorite part about it is putting it over your under eye concealer instead of a regular pressed powder.  It doesn't crease, and all fine lines are blurred, and concealer stays in place all day.  I also got a BB Tinted Treatment 12-Hour Primer as a sample and am really loving that as well to put under the Amazonian Clay Airbrush Foundation.  This is my first experience with Tarte Cosmetics, and I'm really impressed with their products.  I just wish my budget would allow to try some more.

The next couple of my favorites are much more wallet friendly.  First there is the e.l.f. Essentials Eyelid Primer-

This was SUPER reasonable at only $1.25 at my local grocery store.  But don't let the price tag fool you.  This product does everything you would expect an eye shadow primer to do.  After using this, and wearing it all day, my eye shadow stays in place and doesn't crease at all.  I would highly recommend this product especially to people with combination to oily skin.

I also am loving the e.l.f. Essential Waterproof Eyeliner pen right now. 
 eyeliner, eye liner, eye makeup, makeup pen, eye pen, eyeliner pen
It was the same price as eyelid primer, and it is a great pigmented eyeliner.  I really like the way it feels like a fine-tip marker which makes application much easier for those who have a hard time with liquid eyeliner. The only issue is that it is not what I would consider waterproof.  Maybe only smudge proof.

My last two favorites are products from Sally's Beauty Supply. The first is Miracle 7 Leave-in Mist-

A product thumbnail of Miracle 7 Leave-in Mist 5 oz.

I have really long hair that I rarely trim which makes it easy to get split ends.  But the last 5 months I have been using this product every time after I wash my hair and I have seen a good difference in the amount of breakage I experience.  For anyone that is trying to grow their hair out and wants to avoid damaged ends, this is a great product.  Plus, it smells so yummy and costs under $14!

Last but not least is the Sally's Brand Meta Grip Premium Bobby Pins-

A product thumbnail of Premium Bob Pins
The price tag on these are $8 for 300.  They are seriously the best bobby pins ever.  You will never going back to using any other brand after trying these.  They never slip out, rust, get stretched apart, and they don't have the rubber ends that can be pulled off.  Everything that you don't like about bobby pins is solved with these.  I have had the same ones for over 2 years now, and they are exactly the same as when I bought them.

Well, there is a round-up of some of my favorite beauty products!  I would love to hear of any products you guys would recommend.  Let me know in the comments!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Rash Update and Randomness

So, I am a terrible blogger.  I mean, I haven't posted in FOREVER.  This is even the case after I said I would post more often.  What the heck is wrong with me?? haha  Hope you can forgive me ;)

Anyways, I thought I would revisit Kason's crazy rash he got this time last year, and give an update.  It all started  in this post when he looked like this-

We were finally able to get it calmed down after numerous doctor visits, medications, creams, and then finally referred to a dermatologist.  The dermatologist was just as confused by this weird rash though, that after a scraping and ultimately a biopsy on his inner thigh (where the rash was also present), there was still no clear diagnosis.  I'm still a bit traumatized to be honest by watching the doctor cut a chunk out of my baby's rolly thigh with a little circle razor-sharp cookie-cutter.  Lots of stuff was ruled out, but there was nothing that you could pin point what exactly his ailment was.  His face, up into his eyes was covered in this rash that made his skin red and raw.  It was also covering his whole diaper area and down his thighs.  Then it showed up on his just-learned-to-crawl knees.  I was told it just must be an irregular presentation of Eczema.  We tried a few more creams and after a nightmare three months it cleared up.

The rash was gone for a few months after that until some little tiny bumps and redness started showing up around Kason's mouth around Valentine's Day.  They weren't too bad at first.  They would even come and go.  But before long, his face started looking like this-

I tried using the stuff prescribed for him earlier, but it was all to no avail.  It seemed no matter what I did, it just got worse.  Just like the previous rash.  But this one was obviously different.  It looked different, acted different, and needed to be treated different.

We took a few more trips to the doctor and I voiced my frustration for not knowing how to treat my poor sensitive-skinned baby's face.  I was FINALLY referred to the only pediatric dermatologist in the great state of Utah.  The only problem was that I would have to travel to Salt Lake City which is a couple hour drive, and that she is usually booked out about four months.  The drive didn't really bother me, but 4 months is a long time to wait to treat such an uncomfortable rash on my sweet baby!  Luckily the nurse understood my urgency and was able to squeeze us into a cancellation for two months out.

All summer long Kason struggled with this bumpy, red, and itchy face.  Then, when August rolled around, we made the trek to Salt Lake to Primary Children's Medical Center.  It took the doctor there only about three seconds after getting his history and seeing pictures of his previous rash to make a diagnosis on both.  His first rash was in fact an irregular presentation of Eczema.  The current rash is a condition known as Perioral Dermatitis.  It is a common skin problem that mostly affects young women.  Although it can occasionally effect both men and children.  Just like it did with my Kason.  It is known by its redness, small red bumps or pus bumps, and mild peeling.  There is no known cause although it's believed strong corticosteroid creams applied to the face can cause it.  It's thought that it will make it go away temporarily only to come back worse once treatment is stopped.  I made sure to bring in my big bag of creams and ointments Kason had been previously prescribed to show the pediatric dermatologist.  She told me not to use any of them and that most of them would make his face much worse.

After using his new prescribed ointment for a few weeks, his face cleared up completely!

 I am so happy and relieved.  My poor baby has had quite the year with these not fun skin conditions, and it has been both heartbreaking and frustrating.  Two months after our first visit with Pediatric Dermatologist extraordinaire Dr. VanDerhooft, we had a follow-up appointment to see how Kason's skin was doing.  So with a husband who took the day off and three kids in tow, we headed back down to Salt Lake.

Dr. VanDerhooft didn't seem surprised by how well his skin looked and gave him the thumbs up to not have to come back unless he starts having issues again.  I'm so glad that his skin is better and that I can caress his baby soft skin again!

With Rhett off work for the day and kids out of school, we decided to make the most out of our trip to Salt Lake and spend the day taking in Temple Square, and trying out one of Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives visited restaruants and go to The Red Iguana.  The food was awesome!  And going to Temple Square in the middle of the week was good because there weren't many people there. In fact, we were the only people in the visitor's center theater to watch Legacy. Haha  It made for good quiet time for the kids and I have always loved that movie.  Please tell me I'm not the only one!  Rhett said it's not so bad even though he thought it was so boring as a kid.

Speaking of olden day movies, I stayed up until 12:30 the other night watching Gone With The Wind.  That movie goes on forever!  I was definitely dragging the next day, but I felt obligated to watch it knowing that's where Rhett got his name from.  But I couldn't help but becoming so engrossed in the story, wondering what was going to happen next, and falling in love with the costumes.  I also couldn't help but falling for the handsome Rhett Butler.  He was definitely a charismatic, witty character and I have a new appreciation for my cute hubby's name.  I was also waiting and wondering all the way through the three-and-a-half hour movie for the famous line Rhett Butler gives to Scarlet- "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn."  As luck would have it, it ended up being in the last three minutes.

This post started about a persistent rash and ended with Gone With The Wind.  I'm totally random I know.

Has anyone else experienced anything like what we went through with Kason's skin issues?  Also, do I have any fellow really old "boring" movie lovers out there??  Like to the point that my sisters and I watched Seven Brides For Seven Brothers on repeat so many times that we picked out and assigned which character each of us were, and knew every song and almost every line by heart until we annoyed my Mom enough to hide the movie?

*crickets chirping*

 Oh, so it's just me? ...well and maybe my 3 sisters ;)