A little over a year ago, my dad moved from the house where I (mostly) grew up in Zanesville, OH to The Middle Of Nowhere, IN when his wife took a university position in the northern part of the state. Going from having him forty-five minutes away to three hours away has been an adjustment, but he finally has his house surrounded by all the grass he can mow in the midwestern countryside. He's happy, so we're happy for him.
Our visits are a little more of a production now since they nearly always require an overnight stay. My sister typically accompanies us which means our dog sitter option is gone and along comes Gus. Now that Julenna has a bunny, that's just one more animal to add to the happy caravan. A couple of weeks ago Andy and I loaded up the Element with Julenna, Lucy, Gus, and Hilde and we headed west to celebrate Father's Day with good old Rex and deliver the air pop popcorn maker I bought for his gift. This was my attmept to get him to switch from microwave popcorn (which I am convinced will ultimately lead to the demise of whomever consumes the chemical laden kernals).
Lucy already loves trips to my dad's since he has a kiddie pool, a "bark" (her word for any sort of jungle gym/swing set/sliding apparatus) and endless amount of patince for her antics. But recently the neighbor who borders the back yard adopted three adorable and friendly ponies. This is a gamechanger for little Lu.
I know it isn't the most popular of opinions, but I'm not the biggest fan of summer. Warm evenings spent watching the sun tuck behind the trees in a wide open space has the power to change my mind ever so slightly. Add in a cute little girl and the people I love the most and SOME PONIES and I'm almost converted to a fan.
I don't know about you, but when Ohio works its magic and the temps go from forty degrees to eighty-five (with a million percent humidity, naturally), my skin goes a little crazy if I'm not careful. Let's be honest, my skin is a little crazy without the help of Ohio's bipolar weather tendencies so I'm always on the lookout for products that feel light but still do the trick. These are a few of my summer makeup bag staples favorites.
Trader Joes Jojoba Oil: The ultimate in natural products for pore-cleansing, makeup removal, and moisturizing. My face is ultra sensative so I can't use anything with fancy perfumes OR ELSE. This does the trick on it's own without anything extra. It's awesome for traveling light too.
Simple Revitalizing Eye Roll-On: I don't like to wear concealer (at least during the day) in the summer. It feels heavy and looks bad after a few hours so I am loving this sensative skin friendly eye revitalizing roll-on. Fast, easy, effective. Love it. Birchbox introduced me to this gem.
Supergoop CC Cream (SPF 35): Most days I'll go naked faced during the day, but if I want or need a little extra coverage I love this stuff. It's lightweight, has better coverage than other BB creams/tinted moisturizers that's I've tried and the color is self-adjusting. It also has a matte finish for shine control.
Fresh Sugar Rose Tinted Lip Treatment (SPF 15): This stuff is looks amazing, feels amazing and smells amazing which I know is an odd thing to mention about lip balm, but it's true so I'm telling you.
Benefit High Beam Luminizer: This stuff is great for adding a little highlight here and there. It doesn't leave your face feeling too sparkley or oily.
Cover Girl Eyeshadow Shimmering Sands: A friend my freshman year of high school introduced me to this eye shadow and I have used it ever since. That means it's been in my makeup bag for close to twenty years (oh dear, I'm old). I am forever trying newer fancier shadows, but I always come back to good old Cover Girl. This color pallate in particular is lovely and works on most if not all skin colors. I spent the whole of my twenties as a professional bridesmaid and I can't tell you how many friends wore this on their walk down the aisle. It's lovely and natural looking.
The Balm Hot Mama Blush/Shadow: This blush has a really nice golden pink color to it that adds a little pop to your cheeks without too much color.
Cover Girl Lash Blast Volume Mascara: I love this mascara for both how it looks and it's price tag. It's been my go-to ever since Cover Girl released it.
Urban Decay Naked Eyeshadow Pallette: I photograph weddings for a living and this has been a staple in nearly every makeup artist's bag I have ever met. It's super versitile and you can acheive so many beautiful looks with all the different combinations. It's also $50. That's the down side. But if you want to stay with a natural palette, it's awesome. If I want a smokier eye for going out, this is my go to.
Dior Maximizer Lash Primer/Plumping Serum: A professional drag queen in the NYC Sephora sold this to me for the first time and I wish I could go back and give him a hug. It. Is. AWESOME. I have really light and thin eyelashes so mascara alone often doesn't do the trick, but I am WAY too low maitence for any kind of regular false eyelash application. It just isn't going to happen. This + a good mascara (like The're Real below) is the closest you will get to false eyelashes without any glue. Goes on white, extends lashes, promotes natural growth of lashes. Try it. You will love it.
Benefit They're Real! Mascara: This mascara has fantastic coverage, extends lashes, and goes on super smooth. It only comes in black and I wear brown during the day, so I leave this for night or special occasions. It's all the rage with most beauty editors so I have no doubt you can find a million people to confirm the virtues of this mascara.
Nars Semi-Matte Lipstick: This stuff is so great. It goes on smooth (unlike A LOT of other matte lipsticks), and stays on for a long time. Color Pictured = Red Lizard. It's a full on Betty Draper shade of red.
Stila Liquid Eyeliner/Nars Pencil Liners are my favorites when I want to add a little edge to my night look, but most of the time I line my eyes with the lightest shadow from the CG Shimmering Sands shadow.
Jouer Perfume Oil: This technically isn't for your face, but I'm loving this little rollerball scent I got as a bonus with a full-sized product purchase from Birchbox. I
So what's in your bag?
I typically love the fresh start feeling that the new year brings with it. I love making lists and goals and planning for the future. I have journal pages full of plans. Some things I actually accomplish, some things live continuously on my Big Picture List, some attempts are met with failure, and some things I have to let go.
If I were to measure life by my lists, 2012 brought more in the failure and letting go department than accomplishment.
Letting go is hard. Even if the thing you are letting go of isn't something you particularly love and isn't treating you well, it's still a struggle. The relinquishing of control and moving forward into the foggy unknown requires patience, hope and faith that everything will ultimately be ok. I am going to be honest, I'm scared and anxious and my head feels like its full of nothing but question marks. I am struggling to find the energy to put toward a new beginning.
Over the last few weeks I've been writing my new journal entries, making my new plans, writing my new lists. It's been slow going and there have been a lot of moments I just want to go back to what I know and where I'm comfortable. I don't want to be brave. I don't want to embrace change. I don't want to move on.
I ran across this quote somewhere on the internets and I scribbled it down on a piece of scrap paper that I find myself pulling out daily. It brings me a lot of comfort and inspires me to put one foot in front of the other on the days when I can't quite figure out where I'm going and I want to hide out on my couch and watch a never ending string of Gilmore Girls episodes.
Here's to a new year (a month and some change late) and starting where you are.