Friday, November 29, 2013

Best Gift Guides

Happy Black Friday/Post Turkey Binge 2013!  Briana and I are spending time with our families, but we hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving and a lot of pie!  For those of you gettin' your shop on this weekend, Briana and I have combed through a lot of websites looking at the gift guides (which they helpfully began providing at Halloween).  Here's what we think are the best references for looking for gift ideas (keeping in mind that they are intended to only promote products that the website sells....we recommend comparison shopping for the best prices):

Gifts for the Cook: Sur la Table
Beauty Gifts: Sephora
Hostess Gifts: Paper Source
Personalized Gifts: Swoozies
Stocking Stuffers: Restoration Hardware
For Your Man: Men's Health
Kiddie Gifts: Think Geek & Amazon
All Around Gift Guide: Oprah's Favorite Things

Don't forget to use Ebates to get the best possible deals you can!  We will be sharing our own gift guides and fantasy wish lists in a couple of weeks, so be on the look out for more ideas.  Also, check out our Pinterest board for the "girl who has everything."  Happy shopping!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope everyone is enjoying time with family, friends, food, and football (or any combination of the above that makes you happy). We are very thankful for our readers and for the growth we have seen since getting back to regularly scheduled blogging. Melinda and I enjoy writing Posh Purpose together - it is our long distance project to fill in for all the other fun projects we would love to do together but can't because of geography. We hope that y'all enjoy reading along with us!

I am also thankful for almost one whole year of being married to J, despite two cross country moves ;) We are celebrating our one year anniversary on Sunday!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Post-Turkey Activities You Can Do in Your Fat Pants

No matter how cute I dress up for Thanksgiving (which most years isn't that much, I'll admit), I always wind up back in some comfy, non-binding old sweatpants.  Here is our list of post-turkey (not to mention post-sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, gravy, dinner rolls, green beans, favorite family casserole, three kinds of pie, and some type of wine) activities you can do from the safety and comfort of your official fat pants while you digest:

1. Take a walk
2. Take a nap
3. Plan out your method of attack for every mall, outlet, and discount store within a 15 mile radius
4. Check to make sure none of the neighbors lit themselves on fire trying to deep fry a turkey
5. Burn calories by pretending to care about NFL football - jumping in excitement and screaming in disappointment can work up a sweat, even if you are faking it
6. Research future Pinterest projects - the holiday crafting season has just begun!
7. Research Pinterest fails...laughing burns calories too!
8. Read up on our tips for beating the "season of eating" weight gain
9. Call your grandma, your friend from far away, the person you didn't get to see at the turkey table...let them know you are thinking of them and wishing them well
10. Did we mention taking a nap?

Our Thanksgiving motto: "whatever you do....don't go back for 3rds."

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving Tablescapes

Melinda and I love tablescapes. During the wedding planning phase of our lives, we poured over tons and tons of tablescapes looking for inspiration. Since Thanksgiving is upon us, we decided to go back to old habits and share a few of our favorite tables for the holiday.

Source: Liz Marie Blog

I love how fresh this table feels! I also love the imperfection of all the natural pieces. The color scheme is unexpected for Thanksgiving, yet still looks like Thanksgiving due to the beautiful gourds. I wish I could get my hands on those gourds! Sadly, Florida usually sticks to the orange and yellow ones.

Source: Justina Blakenly

That china is gorgeous! And I love the flowers tucked into the napkins. Speaking of flowers, these arrangements are lovely and simple. And since they are smaller, they can easily be shifted around to accommodate the serving dishes full of delicious Thanksgiving food.

Source: Dimples and Tangles blog

I love feathers. And gold china. The shutters were a clever idea to add both color and texture to the table. And the gold branches? Perfect with the feathers. Did I mention I love feathers?

Source: Design Sponge

Does anybody know where can I get that flatware? I bet it is not dishwasher safe, and J is already onto me about owning two full sets of handwash only flatware (and no dishwasher safe sets). I love the gold and cream pieces in the upper left corner. And the combo of plum, green, and navy? That's a variation on my dining color scheme! The foliage stretched across the plates shouts Thanksgiving, but in a pleasant and melodic voice. Love it!

In my dreams, I own a different set of china for every holiday. And I have a handwashing fairy who cleans all my non dishwasher safe pieces before J can even think about grumbling. The fairy also irons. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Posh Purpose on Social Media

Posh Purpose is now on instagram - follow our handle @PoshPurpose! Our sidebar has shown our twitter feed for a while, but we have finally decided to jump on the instagram bandwagon. Melinda will be managing the instagram account while I tweet, meaning y'all will get to experience both sides of Posh Purpose: Behind the Scenes Edition. Hope y'all enjoy!

Beating the Winter Weight Gain

I've talked a bit before about dieting and weight loss in the past when I was trying to get in shape for my wedding.  Since getting married, I've put about 5 of the 20 lbs. I lost back on.  Which in the space of the year isn't awesome, but isn't tragic either.  I always get nervous this time of the year, because I'm already susceptible to weight gain let alone when there are Little Debbie Christmas Tree cakes lurking at the register, the red Oreos are out, and those peppermint M&Ms haunt me everywhere....not to mention the dinners out with friends, increase in alcohol consumption, holiday dinners, and general lack of time to prepare a healthy meal.

So, I've been thinking about what my tactics are going to be this year during the "season of eating" (which for me begins Halloween and runs through Mr. 3's birthday which is January 15th - I never turn down birthday cake, even if it isn't my own).  My main goal is to just maintain the weight I'm at and let my standard January 1st New Year's Resolution (which is always to lose those last 15 lbs.) go into effect, but hopefully without the mass panic of saying I need to lose 15 lbs. PLUS all the weight I put on as I got merry with all my nearest and dearest.   I've heard all the tips and tricks that Weight Watchers and magazines like Self put out. Some are good, some don't do diddly for me.

My least favorite tip has to be the one about eating your dinner before you go to a party so you don't eat while you're at the party.  Um, news flash...I don't have to be hungry to eat a cookie or drink a pint of egg nog.  It's like jello...there's always room.  Plus, who wants to be the person who deprives themselves of all Christmas treats?  Um, not this Posh Purpose girl.

So, I've been thinking about what will work for me and hopefully these tips will help you too!  I told Briana about my article and she said I should promise to report back on the results in January.  Tricky cousin, wanting accountability.  BUT, I told her I was in.  While you will not be getting actual numbers, (Mr. 3 is a regular reader of this blog and some things should just remain a mystery in a marriage as far as I'm concerned) I will say whether I'm up, down (hahhahaha, good one!), or meeting my goal of just maintaining the weight I'm at now.  Here they are:

Posh Purpose's Kindly Suggestions on How to Still Fit in Your Pants Come January

1. Religious calorie counting on days you don't have parties/events - 1600 calories* and no more (I use an Android app called Fat Secret...horrible name, but decent app).  Weigh in daily to keep yourself honest.

2. Eat something healthy before a party - soup and salad if you have time or yogurt and nuts are both good options.  Although I don't believe in eating before you go to a party in order to not eat at the party is a good idea, I also don't think I want to have my blood sugar drop and find myself face first in a cheese platter either.  Been there, done that.

3. Eat 3-4 small servings of things you truly want to eat at the party - things that are special for Christmas time or you know are a specialty of the hosts....then don't eat them again at any other parties.  For example, I love egg nog, rum balls, and peppermint bark.  I could have a small cup of egg nog, 2-3 rum balls, and a piece of peppermint bark at a party.  At the next party, I would bypass these items and perhaps choose a scoop of hot crab dip, a small cup of apple cider, and a slice of pie.  Then bypass all of those items at any other parties.  Fill up on veggies and lean protein for the rest of your food selection.  Cold shrimp is a very good choice that you will often find this time of year.  My theory on this tip is that I will get to have all my favorite things without overloading my plate at each and every party.

4. Cut back on your everyday treats -  ex. if you are putting half and half in your coffee, switch to 2% for the next month.

5. Eat seafood at corporate events - My nutritionist once said that if you have to go into an event blind or without any ability to customize your food, go for fish.  Even if the fish is deep fried or sauteed in butter, the calorie count for fish starting out is lower than any of the other proteins.

6. Stick to wine or hard cider - Lots of taste, less calories than a mixed drink, classier than a shot, and no fat.

7. Plan out where you can eat when you are running errands or Christmas shopping now - For me, I know the meal combinations I can have at Chick-Fil-A (grilled chicken nuggets and small fry or spicy chicken sandwich - no bun - and small fry) and Panera Bread (bacon turkey bravo half sandwich and half salad or bowl of soup) which are readily accessible.  Other options for a sit down meal, are Olive Garden (soup, salad, and bread sticks) and Seasons 52 (no item on the menu is over 475 calories).  I would suggest looking at your local area where you plan on doing the most shopping and coming up with a game plan.  My nutritionist told me successful dieters have plans and people tend to gain weight the most when they are rushed for time and don't have a plan set in place.  That's how you wind up pulling through the Taco Bell line and ordering a burrito and two tacos with extra nacho sauce.

8. Add on 15 mins to your work out time or another workout a week.  If you can't do that, try to go for a walk at lunch during your work days.  Also, try and have a nice walk (so relaxing!) or jog (if you feel so inclined, I rarely do) on the major holidays - Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's.  It will help you digest post-meal and it's a nice way to either spend time with family or get away from them (depending on your situation).

9. Take none and leave all - If you are having a party or hosting Christmas dinner, stock up on to-go containers.  If it's not healthy, it must go.  If you are attending a party, refuse to take anything.  You can "accidentally" leave it behind.  Whoopsies.

10. Plan a non-meal event for your girlfriend get togethers -  I usually go out to eat with my North Carolina girlfriends to exchange gifts and catch up.  This year, I will be suggesting coffee.  You can get a small drink (non-fat latte with cinnamon on top - caffeine & protein!) and if you can't stay away from the bakery case, split something with your friends. You'll save money and calories.  Other options would be to go bowling or ice skating.

11. Eat what you want on the main days - Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve, and New Year's Day.  Chances are you probably won't be eating more than one big meal each of those days.  Even if you are eating 2,500 calories, you are doing it all at once and not three times that day.  You should also be able to rebound from 1-2 days of poor's the week long time frame of Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve to New Year's Day that I've noticed really make an impact.  I also don't see the point in eating low-cal versions of traditional foods - pumpkin pie with splenda is just not the same and my father would disown me if I asked him to use something like agave in the cranberries.  If you must exercise some sort of self control or you are attending multiple meals in one day - fill up on whatever main protein there is (ham, turkey, etc.) and the healthiest side (usually green beans).  You can have small scoops of all your favorite things and only eat the best offerings at each meal if you are going to multiple places (i.e. if your Aunt Gertrude's sweet potatoes are better than your granny's...don't tell, but don't eat either).

12. Get back to your regular groove as soon as possible and don't beat yourself up - I think even with these tricks I'm going to try, I may still gain 1-3 lbs between now and the New Year...but that's much less to beat myself up about and far fewer pounds to work off compared to the 20 billion people who join the gym and take all the parking spots/machines post-holiday 15 lb. binge.  I'll just go back to my regular schedule - I hope without having to buy new pants.

These are just some things that I've thought up that I think are going to help me...I'll let you know in January how it all worked out.  If you've got any great tips, feel free to share them!!!

I wrote a status update December 16 - so far no weight gained! And on January 2, I announced that I survived the holiday season without gaining any weight! Check out that post to see which of my tips above I found useful and which ones I abandoned.

* I'm not a licensed professional, so you should consult your doctor before starting any nutrition plan or exercise program.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Melinda's Family Thanksgiving Traditions

Growing up, our Thanksgiving traditions changed a few times.  For my early years, I spent Thanksgiving at home with my Mom, Dad, older brother, and grandma.  After my brother and grandma passed away, my mom's best friend started asking us over to her house to do Thanksgiving with their family, extended family, and the occasional other friend.  After mom's friend had a sudden illness, Thanksgiving became just about my Mom, Dad, and me.  Last year and this year, Mr. 3's mom and stepdad have hosted Thanksgiving and invited my parents.  Because our family traditions have changed so much, I'd like to say what my favorite traditions were during the times we practiced them.

1. Mom's 1970's pilgrim tablecloth - White with 70s brown and orange pilgrims hanging out - always put on the table when Thanksgiving was held at our house (except for the one year when Mom tried to switch it up and she says I got a bit temperamental with her about it)

2. Pickle platter - anything pickled or brined and it get dished up and served out on my mom's glass relish dish (it's shaped like a leaf), lots of fancy stuffed olives (blue cheese is my fav), pickled okra, pickled peaches (when we can find them...let me know if you have a source, they are soooooo good), my dad's homemade pickled green tomatoes (these are a more recent and welcome addition to the platter)

3. Two kinds of pie and only these two kinds - mincemeat and pumpkin

4. Dad's cranberry relish - made from blender pulverized whole cranberries, orange, and a whole lot of sugar - no cooking required and always served up in the same beautiful glass pedestal bowl

5. Taking a morning walk with Mr. 3 and his mom on Thanksgiving Day - I know we have only done this one time, but I'm hoping it will be a tradition anytime we have Thanksgiving with them.  I love getting up and walking in the fall.  The area of NC that they live in is extremely walkable and pretty.

6. Post-Thanksgiving binge - reading sales circulars for Black Friday shopping and putting on my fat pants.

Isn't it funny how our favorite memories can be tied to certain things?  No matter where I have been spending Thanksgiving day or who it has been with, I've always been grateful to spend time with my loved ones!

Psst...if you missed Briana's family traditions, check 'em out here

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Briana's Family Thanksgiving Traditions

I have a confession. Thanksgiving is probably my least favorite holiday. I think the spirit of being thankful is important and I love family time, but I just am not crazy about Thanksgiving food and I would much rather watch college football than the Detroit Lions. I'm sure my mom will call me up after reading this blog post and inform me of all the traditions I forgot, but here are the ones I thought to share with y'all.

The most important Stanley Clan tradition for Thanksgiving is enforced by my mother every single year. After the first pass through of food is consumed, Mother starts asking everyone what they are thankful for this year. You don't get to pass or ask for a later turn; we have all learned to prep for this moment starting in October. We have a few traditions within this tradition. My brother makes his daughter say she is thankful for him and one brother-in-law makes sure he always says he is thankful for his wife before saying anything else. He made the mistake of having lots of things to be thankful for one year, and she was not mentioned.

We have the traditional Thanksgiving food. Since we are a very large group with lots of opinions, we often have two different versions of those traditional foods: stuffing both cooked in and out of the turkey, two variations of cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes with marshmallows and sweet potatoes with candied pecans, and it just goes on and on. My older sisters bring dishes over and usually my little sister helps my mom cook the days leading up to Thanksgiving. However, she goes to Georgia Tech and their game against UGA is at Tech this year so she is not coming home for Thanksgiving. This is also my first Thanksgiving being married, so it will also be my first Thanksgiving cooking. I have been assigned mashed potatoes - wish me luck.

Being that we live in Florida, we usually eat our Thanksgiving meal outside in my mom's back yard (hatemail and requests for an invite are both acceptable and expected). We used to clear out her living room furniture and replace it with a string of rectangular tables, but since the grandkids got a bit older we ran out of space inside. Mother wants us all to be together for the meal, so she moved us outside rather than creating a kids table in a different room like we have for other family events. Here are a few pictures from Thanksgiving 2008.

Kids activities

I went through a brunette/no bangs phase.. also, that niece is now 8 years old!

Playing in the sun on Thanksgiving - they are all 10 years old now

Do y'all have any fun Thanksgiving traditions? My brothers all end up napping on the couch/floor during football and eventually my mom kicks us all out of her house, but I figure that is pretty typical of the holiday. Check back tomorrow for Melinda's Thanksgiving traditions!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Pinterest 2013 Gift Giving Guide

When I saw an email from Pinterest detailing their 2013 Gift Giving Guide contest, I created a pin board and immediately added Melinda as a contributing pinner. We decided to find gift items for the Girl Who Has Everything, and we had so much fun doing it! Our pins cover a wide range of ideas that we hope will provide inspiration when you are planning a gift for that person who gives you trouble every year.

Our board description:
We all know that girl who has everything. Let's reward her for working hard, caring for her family, never forgetting her girlfriends, all while keeping up with her own passions. Here are our suggestions for the gift giving season, from hostess gifts to girls day experiences to something sweet for your wife.

 Now for a few of my favorite items on the board, starting with a hostess gift.

Christmas is definitely the baking season, along with the gift giving season and the decorating season. I love giving homemade desserts as hostess gifts because it provides the lovely hostess with something she can set out for guests or family without any extra effort. My little sister makes wonderful rum balls; unfortunately, I do not have her recipe but Martha's sounds delicious. Don't forget to try out Publix brand butter when baking your mountain of rum balls!

I fell in love with this glass knob wine stopper while browsing Nordstrom. It is so pretty! It is $38, but you currently get 5% cash back through Ebates and free Nordstrom shipping and returns. Clever DIYers could totally figure out how to make a  budget version with cork and thrift store knobs. Hmm.. I may need to add that to my ever growing project list.

And for a less budget friendly item, Melinda found these hand painted monogrammed leather opera gloves. They come in ivory and black, along with the red below. Leather and lined with 100% silk, they are quality gloves. The price is $250, monogramming included. These particular gloves take three weeks to ship, which is an important reminder to start Christmas shopping (any gift shopping, really) early so you don't end up being restricted to Amazon Prime items.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Publix Butter

Since the holiday season is also a major baking season, I thought this was the perfect time to share my experience with Publix brand butter. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Eve are wonderful excuses to bake delicious treats for friends (or yourself, no judgement here) but purchasing those ingredients does add up fast.

If you have followed my series on store brand products, you already know I love Publix and have had great luck with their organic milk. I have consistently bought Publix butter as well, and I am quite satisfied with it. I used to buy Land O'Lakes butter but couldn't tell the difference when I compared it to Publix butter. Even better, Publix butter saves you $1.10 per box, which means you save 27.5 cents per stick of butter.

However, I did buy two boxes of Land O'Lakes last week because Publix had them on sale for $2.50 each. J actually pointed out the sign to me. He is often a wonderful shopping companion. Are there any store brand products you like? Which ones don't you like?

Monday, November 18, 2013

Recently Spotted: Kate Spade Pierrepont Place Line

During one of my recent trolls on the Bloomies website (looking for all things luxe aaaaand on sale) I came across a new Kate Spade servingware line.   I'm seriously obsessing over all things with black trim and I love, love, love the look of these pieces!
Kate Spade Pierrepont Place Bowl
Image Source: Bloomingdales
Kate Spade Pierrepont Place Chip and Dip
Image Source: Bloomingdales

Kate Spade Pierrepont Place 2-Piece Serving Set
Image Source: Bloomingdales

Kate Spade Pierrepont Place 2-Piece Bar Set
Image Source: Bloomingdales

The line is nickel-plated with enamel accents...which means hand washing (evidently I shall be forever chained to the sink for my love of all things not-dishwasher safe).  Unfortunately, at this point in my life, I don't have the budget for $400 in servingware, but I love that the black enameling has become a trend in housewares! Bloomies is the only one carrying Pierrepont Place in the area I think, so I will have to check it out in person so I can sigh over it and picture it in my black and white dream house (which is one of many dream houses I have going on).  These pieces would look great in this fancy pants kitchen:

Image Source: Unknown

This fancy pants dining room:

Image Source: Ana Antunes 

Or either of these two fancy pants houses:

Image Source: Lisa Price Inc.

Image Source: Houzz

What do you think of the black and white color combo?  Check out our other dream homes by following Briana and me on Pinterest!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Lilly Pultizer Travel Pants aka the Best Leggings Ever

I like the idea of leggings.  They are comfortable, easy to wear and take care of, compact for suitcases, and pretty cheap. However, not all leggings are created equal.  I've seen far too many ladies with leggings made of see-through or threadbare material and short tops that don't cover the tush.  For me, I had one pair of thin (but not see-through) leggings made by Hue.  They are good for cold-ish weather, but I usually can't wear them past December in DC.

I recently started reading this fashion blog written by a super cute girl down South and she had written several posts involving the Lilly Pulitzer Travel Pant.  She described them as "ten times better than leggings and a thousand times better than jeans. So comfortable, they keep their shape AND you can wear them with a million different outfits." 
Lilly Pulitzer Travel Pant
Image Source: Lilly Pulitzer
I went to the Tysons Galleria mall to check them out at the Lilly Pulitzer store....and promptly fell in love.  I tried on the black and the charcoal.  The black was very slimming, but the charcoal was a wee bit odd.  As in, less flattering, plus I couldn't figure out what I would wear with them without really breaking up my body into different colored blocks (brown boots, grey leggings, blue top? black boots, grey leggings, black top? combo of the previously mentioned but with pink or purple top?).  I also couldn't make up my mind as to whether I thought the $98 price tag was actually worth it.  So, I put them both back on the rack and let Mr. 3 escort me home.

THEN.  Bloomies had a crazy online sale I've never seen before.  50% off all Lilly Pulitzer, that's right all.  Whaaaaat?  So, I took a gamble and purchased them in navy (because that's the only color Bloomies had).  With the sale, free shipping, and ebates, I paid like $45 for them aaaaand I've been wearing them like it's my J-O-B.  They are so comfortable and thick.  DC has been having some early onset cold weather (which I do NOT appreciate) and I am still able to wear them.  The waist band and material also does a really good job of smoothing me out and keeping the dreaded-stretchy-pant-roll-down-which-then-creates-muffin-top (or in some cases, exploded-can-of-biscuits) at bay.

Way more than your average pair of leggings? Yes.  Worth every single penny? Yes.

I would love, love, love to have the travel pant in black too.  At $98 though, that's still a lot to swallow for elastic pants.  So, I'll be keeping my eye out for any holiday coupons for the local, independently owned Lilly Pulitzer stores (sometimes they offer 20-25% off single items) aaaand saving my pennies in case that doesn't happen.

Anyone else tried them out there?  What did you think?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Briana's Favorite Bra: Natori Feathers Underwire

One of our most popular posts at Posh Purpose is Melinda's review of the Victoria's Secret Runway Sports Bra. It has received over 3350 views! However, I'm not at all surprised by the popularity - it is extremely important to find the right bra for you and the activity.

To get in on the fun, I wanted to share a bit about my favorite bra, Natori's Feather bra. First of all, it is so pretty! The colors are wonderful and the lace is lovely. The band is petite enough that I am satisfied with the fit. Often, I have to have bands altered by my seamstress before they fit right. The bra has no significant padding, but it does a wonderful job lifting and it is sooooo comfortable to wear. That last bit is probably the most important - nobody wants to be wriggling around all day long from a poorly made bra. Obviously, bras are a very subjective matter but if you are like me and want a bit of "help" without the obnoxious padding, you should definitely check this bra out.

I own three of these bras now in nude, dark blue, and black. Mother bought my first two at Neiman Marcus, but I bought my third at Nordstrom because the Ebates cash back deal was better.

Read our intro to Ebates post for more info on how I save money on things I already plan on purchasing.

***This post does contain affiliate links, however we aren't receiving compensation for writing this article. This is the only bra with straps I will wear and I definitely formed that opinion on my own***

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Hello From Ohio!

J and I have been having a great time in Ohio. I have done a ton of thrift store and second hand Christmas shopping, and a bit of crafting as well (check out Posh Purpose on Twitter for a sneak peek). We also visited the local apple orchard for freshly made apple cider and apple donuts - my fave! The leaves have been beautiful, and Ohio even threw in a bit of snow for us - not my fave! We fly back to warm, sunny Florida tomorrow. Even though I am looking forward to defrosting and retiring my boots and socks for a few more months, I have had a great time visiting with J's family and experiencing a bit of fall and early winter. I am certainly not a photographer, but I hope you still enjoy my iphone pictures!

View as we were landing in Cleveland
J didn't quite fit in our extremely claustrophobic
plane we took from Cleveland to Columbus
Hydrangea leaves turn colors for fall too - I never knew!

Let's Talk Cheap Mascara, Again

Last week, I introduced our new series Mascara Diaries. I told you about my current favorite cheap mascara, Maybelline Colossal Volum' Express. Yay! Prepare your sad faces for today, though. We are about to delve into a tube of mascara that actually sent me running back to my old tube mentioned above.**

Meet Maybelline Mega Plush Volum' Express.
Source: Maybelline

I don't know how I could have such drastically different results from two varieties of Maybelline mascara. This stuff went on a bit thin, definitely did not live up to the awesome marketing name Mega Plush. And a few hours later, it started sliding down my face. At first I blamed humid Florida. Then, my awesome moisturizer. I tried using it with under eye concealer and without. I also tried the under eye powder trick. It just kept sliding. I had an epiphany moment when I was trying to think of another solution: mascara should not be this much work! I promptly pulled out my old tube of Maybelline and threw this one back in the bag. The only reason why I saved it is so that I could remember the specific name to share on Posh Purpose. I clutter up my already cluttered makeup bag for our readers - I am just that dedicated.

I'm sure other people have had different experiences with Mega Plush. I do hope it makes someone happy, the name is just so awesome. However, it did not work for me. Do you have a favorite mascara? Or perhaps a despised tube? Let us know! Melinda and I love to try new products!

**I often switch mascaras every time I buy a new tube because I have cheap cosmetics ADD. However, the results are not always thrilling. That is why I save my old tube for a few weeks until I decide I love the new tube. It pays to hoard cosmetics.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Patio Progress: Time for Some Entertaining!

Although my primary concern has been to find fun furniture so we didn't wind up sitting on a beach blanket on the patio, I also wanted some cute outdoor dishes.  Notice the word, wanted.  I realize that I could use paper plates or my already-in-the-cupboard china, but (1) I always wind up with mismatched paper plates where I have used partial packs for different plates, (2) SAVE THE TREES!, and (3) I would be very upset if my china hit the concrete floor.

Like most things with this project, I was shocked to see how much people charge for plastic plates.  I also figured if I was going to the trouble of finding something, I wanted to make it match my color scheme of black, green, pink, and champagne gold.  I purchased these plates from Lifeguard Press during its Lilly Pulitzer Endless Summer for $22.50.  Although Lifeguard Press no longer carries them, I spotted them at Belk for $30.

Lucky Charms Melamine Plates
Set of 4 - $30
Image Source: Belk
I also rounded up four black cups and two melamine dinner plates from Target.  I love the bubble look to these plastic glasses!  We went with the shorter style from this line (we were able to buy them individually for $1.50 each rather than the set below):

Room Essentials® 8 Piece Bubble Drinkware Set - Black
Image Source: Target

We are using the dinner plates from this line for serving appetizers (same deal and also $1.50 ea):

Room Essentials® 12 Piece Square Dinnerware Set
Image Source: Target
These items are no longer available, but I also managed to find a serving tray at Bloomingdales for $12.49!!! I couldn't believe it.  I also waited out Pottery Barn until they marked this hobnail glass hurricane to $22.50, which pairs well with the 99 cent votives from Sur la Table.  Here's the finished look:

Entertaining Cost Breakdown
Lilly Pulitzer Lucky Charms Plates: $22.50
Target Bubble Glass Tumblers: $1.50 x 4 = $6
Target Appetizer Plates: $1.50 x 2 = $3
Sur la Table Green Votives: $.99 x 2= $2
Pottery Barn Hobnail Hurricane: $22.50
Bloomingdales Tray: $12.49
Total Cost: $68

Super fun, right?  I love how it all came together!  I'm still waiting on one pillow to arrive (just ordered it last week), but then I will be done!  Expect a pillow post including info on that daybed I keep mentioning along with a full reveal!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Patio Progress: Pink Rug!

As a part of our mini-marathon-series on all things concerning my patio, I'm super excited to bring you my pink outdoor rug!
Fab Rugs World Venice Rug
$48 for a 4 x 6
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I'll be honest with you guys.  I thought I was going to have to give up on the pink idea.  After trolling the internet for pink outdoor goods, I've decided I need to start a business catering to all that is pink and outdoor.  There was a serious lack of ready made options for anything pink.  Unless, of course, you have vast quantities of disposable income for custom made Sunbrella cushions.  Outdoor rugs were another issue...there were many ugly options and many expensive options.  I finally found this rug by doing a google search for "pink outdoor rugs" and using the "shop on google" feature.  This rug was available on many websites, but I bought mine from Wayfair because they had $4.99 FedEx shipping and Ebates was offering cash back.  My rug was delivered really quickly.  I also got $1.44 in Wayfair rewards for use towards a future purchase and they also followed up with a $10 coupon (the coupon was only good for a week so I didn't get a chance to use it).  This was my first time buying from them and I was pretty impressed!

Here's how it looks outside:

I like that the rug is made from recycled plastic which will make it easy to care for (instructions say to hose it down).  It also does the job in covering up a good bit of the stained concrete.  I also looooove the black trim which helps tie it into the overall look.  If I'd been willing to spend a bit more moo-lah, I probably would have gotten the next size up, but at $85 that was a bit much for me.

Total Cost for Pink Rug: about $53

What do you think?  Fun and welcoming right?

Wayfair did not pay me to write this article or give me anything not already discussed in this article.  This is not a sponsored post.  All opinions are mine! Read our intro to Ebates article for more info on how you can save money by shopping online.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Restoration Hardware Friends and Family

Hello from Ohio - it's that time again! Restoration Hardware is doing another Friends and Family event. Enter code FRIENDS at checkout for 20% off everything!

This Friends and Family event lasts November 8 through November 11. The previous Friends and Family was in effect for July 4 through July 8.

Patio Progress: Painting Furniture

I've been hard at work on my patio and I'm just waiting on my last toss pillow to come in.  Mr. 3 and I have really been enjoying sitting outside, so much so that when the temperature drops we just put more layers on before we go outside.  I'm hoping we will have one or two more warm weekends where we can have people over and convince them to sit outside with us without the aid of a parka.

As I mentioned in my last patio post, my color scheme is black, green, pink and champagne gold.  I wanted room to seat four people comfortably and also have a coffee table for eating.  My priority was to make the space comfortable but colorful without breaking the bank.  I found two chairs and a coffee table on clearance at  I got free shipping by taking advantage of their site to store program (you have to wait slightly longer, but the savings are totally worth it).  I also purchased using Ebates, so I got another 2% cash back, which while small is certainly better than nothing.

Cosco Outdoor Folding Metal Slat Table
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Cocso Outdoor Folding Metal Slat Lounge Chair
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Upsides? I liked these chairs and table because the can be folded up and put away in our storage closet once winter really gets going.  The chairs are also really great because they have a nice wide seat and sit lower to the ground which makes them way more comfortable than sitting on a outdoor dining chair (which would be a few inches higher up and narrower).  Also, I really couldn't beat the price.  I was a bit shocked to find out how much outdoor furniture costs.  I knew places like Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware were really expensive, but I had no idea that places like Kmart and Target would charge over $100 for a chair!

Downsides? The color.  If you'll notice, sandy brown was not included in my color scheme list.  However, champagne gold was!

I grabbed my can of leftover Rustoleum from my bathroom hook project as well as 4 more from Home Depot and went to work on spraying them down....on my 80 sq. foot patio...while trying not to paint anything else like the sliding glass doors and the railing.  Things got pretty trashy looking pretty quickly.  I took some of our many moving boxes and cut them down to make barriers.  I lay down packing paper to cover up any cracks. I also took some plastic tarp we used during our move to cover up our daybed (more on the daybed later).

Sandy Brown Furniture & Packing Materials
I spent a lot of time maneuvering all the furniture around to be sprayed.  Because it rained for a solid week and I had to make trips for extra gold spray paint, it took me about 3 weeks to get it all done.

Post gold coating it looked like this:

I had chosen Rustoleum because I loved the color, it's meant for indoor and outdoor use, and many other blogs have used it before for outdoor projects.  I tried to do many quick light coats and allow for drying time in between.  The project wasn't without its casualties.  I got a bit of paint on the doors and I have a drip mark on one of the chairs. Whoopsies.

The paint also hasn't held up well against scratches.  I've got a number of small nicks on both the table and chairs.  They aren't super noticeable probably to anyone but me; however, we will have to be extra careful to keep it that way.

Patio Cost Break Down
Coffee Table: $29
Lounge Chairs: $34 x 2 = $68
Spray Paint: $6.76 x 4 = $27 (I didn't count the leftover can from the bathroom hook project)
Painting Barriers: $0
Total Cost of Coffee Table & Chairs: about $124

Despite the scratches, I'm overall very pleased with how this turned out.  Worse case scenario, I'll repaint next summer!

What do you think?  Have I made you a believer in the power of champagne gold?