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Be Your Own Kind Of Beautiful

Hello my geeks, sorry for the late post – it’s been one long day (and I’m ridiculously tired). So I’ll make this short and sweet. ❤

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Be your own kind of beautiful. Because at the end of the day, you’re the only one that can judge whether you’re beautiful or not. You can do everything you want to your body, but the one person you always have to go to bed with is yourself – so do what you want and don’t let anyone stop you from doing it. If it makes you feel good, and it makes you feel beautiful, then do it. ❤

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Lady Bug Nail Art

It’s hump-day everybody! We’ve made it halfway through the week! A few days ago I realized that it’s been a while since I’ve actually posted a true blue nail art tutorial. So I looked through my little notebook of ideas and I came across the draft for this lady bug design and I figured that since spring was on it’s way, why not?

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This lady bug design is the most adorable design that I’ve done in a while, and it’s actually pretty easy! The only real “tool” necessary is a dotting tool – and of course you could always use a bobby pin or toothpick (or even the end of a pencil if you’re desperate) as well.

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Items You’ll Need

  • I Red A Good Book {Wet N Wild Megalast}
  • Correction Tape {Spoiled by Wet N Wild}
  • Black Tie {Confetti}
  • Permission To Proceed {Spoiled by Wet N Wild}
  • Dotting Tool

How To

  1. Paint index nail white, and all others red.
  2. On your index finger, use the dotting tool to create small leaves at opposite corners of your nail, and a red dot in between.
  3. Using the dotting tool, use a small amount of black polish to define the ladybug & leaves, and then to create the small dashes behind the ladybug.
  4. To finish up, use the dotting tool and black polish to create ladybug-like dots on all of the red nails.

Of course, don’t forget to finish off with a glossy top coat! I’m so happy with the way this turned out. It’s not often that ideas on paper come out the same way in reality, so this is a definite win in my book!

Don’t forget to enter in my 300 Follower Giveaway! I’m giving away 3 e-gift cards to either ThinkGeek or Ulta (winners choose) and it ends March 1st!!! So get on over to the announcement post and comment on the post to enter! You can also like the post for an additional entry (but it won’t count as one unless you’ve already made a comment!).

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Psst….here’s a little surprise! I put together this tutorial graphic just in case you wanted to save this on Pinterest! 😉

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Never Say Never

Good morning and happy Monday my geeks! I hope your weekend was full of great adventures, I know mine was. I did something this weekend that I thought I’d never do, and never have the courage to do. I went rock climbing! Which is what inspired this week’s quote, never say never.

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I say that I never thought I’d ever go rock climbing for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I’ve always had a fear of heights. Not a true uncontrollable phobia, but a reasonable fear of them. I mean, who in their right mind fancies a fall from any height? But I’ve also always had an issue with bridges and especially those over large bodies of water.

So when my friends invited Zach and I to go rock climbing I thought it was going to be in a cushy indoor gym with padded floors and the like. Turns out it’s an outdoor tower of walls surrounded by gravel. For whatever reason this freaked me out a little. Maybe it was knowing that we were outside in the elements, and that it looked like rain and there were already a bunch of people there causing me to be mostly afraid of making a fool out of myself. Anyways, I sat and watched while my friends and Zach went first, and suddenly I felt very competitive about it.

I’ve always had a slightly competitive nature about me, which is why I generally keep myself away from a lot of competitive games and sports. I always get too into it and end up taking things too serious. But this time, I realized that I could use this to help me conquer my own fears. So I got it into my head that however high Zach got, I would go at least a little bit higher. I used him as my target simply because our other two friends were not only much stronger than both of us but had also been climbing for a while, and we were noobs. Thus I felt it only fair to myself to use Zach as a gage for my success.

The first wall was honestly not a beginner’s wall, but we both wanted to try it just to see how far we could go. I was shocked at how determined I had become, and only because I wanted to get higher than Zach, and possibly even as high as our friends had gone (which was to the top of the wall, so I know I had set semi-unrealistic standards for myself). I had to give up around halfway through, simply because the wall itself was too difficult – but I had pushed myself to go a little bit higher than Zach had gotten.

The next wall was easier in theory, as it went straight up as opposed to angling outwards in spots like the first wall had done. But harder in reality because I had already tired myself out on the first wall. So I used it to get a better feel of how to climb, promising that I’d do better on the next one.

At the very end we went to the beginner’s wall, which was a steady slope upwards the entire time with a good amount of rocks to grab onto. I know – we did everything kind of backwards – but at this point I had got it into my head that I was going to reach the top of one wall before we left, and this was going to have to be it because it was looking very close to raining on us. I was not going to let this last one beat me, I was not going to allow myself to be beat by the beginner’s wall.

The first two thirds was easy, large rocks close together made the incline fast and steady. But then suddenly the rocks were spaced out a little too far, and I couldn’t just reach for the next one regardless of both my arms and legs being long. I had tried merely pushing myself up using the rock I was already gripping, but at this point I simply didn’t have the strength. Oh but I was so close. So very close. Just a few more after that and I would have made it to the top. But I was so tired. My hands and arms were aching, my palms raw from the rough rocks. I was out of breath from pushing myself to this point and from struggling to get up to the next rock. And for the first time I actually looked down and realized just how far I had come…and I realized something. As I looked down at my friends and at Zach, as I looked at my friend who was belaying me, I realized that I wasn’t afraid. I knew that if I fell I would be caught, there was no real risk to pushing myself this last stretch (aside from breaking my nails, which I had already done, to my annoyance). I don’t know where it had been before, but suddenly I found this new determination inside of me. I knew I was tired, I knew I was unbelievably sore, but with a grunt I managed to push myself up to the next rock. Then the next, and the next, and the next until I finally reached the top.

Never, EVER say that you’d never be able to do something. Don’t let yourself be defeated. Deep down inside, you have the strength to conquer anything if you just believe in yourself, and if you make the decision to not let yourself be defeated. Am I stupidly sore and painful because I pushed myself too hard? Yes. My shoulders ache and it’s hard just to pull up my pants sometimes. I can’t wait for my arms to stop hurting, and to be able to open a jar without struggling. But I am proud of myself for pushing onward. I’m proud that I didn’t let myself be defeated.

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AND DON’T FORGET!!! – my 300 Follower Giveaway ends on Wednesday, March 1st! That means you’ve only got 1 WEEK left to enter! Remember that to enter you MUST leave a comment on the post, and don’t forget to like the post to get that second entry!

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Feed Your Face Friday: Hello Fresh Review

Happy Friday!!! TGIF amirite?!

It’s been awhile since my last FYFF post, mostly because I honestly haven’t been cooking that often…. >_> whoops. But, luckily for me, there are multiple different subscription-based services that make cooking super easy and simple. Say hello to Hello Fresh! (psst! stick around to see how you can get $40 off your first order!)

Hello Fresh is a subscription-based food delivery service that creates amazing recipes and delivers all of the awesome fresh ingredients right to your door! Every week, you get to choose how many (or how few) meals you’d like to get delivered, and you can choose exactly which ones you want to cook. You can also opt to skip a week of deliveries, which would be great for if you’re planning a vacation, or if you only use Hello Fresh as a “oh my gosh I don’t feel like going grocery shopping this week” option.

I decided to just try out 3 meals for the week, and picked out the ones that looked the most appealing for Zach & I. I chose the Mozzarella Crusted Chicken, Rapid Stir-Fried Beef & Broccoli, and Sweet Potato & Black Bean Tacos.

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All of the ingredients arrived on the day that I scheduled them to arrive – yep that’s right you can even decide exactly what day your items arrive! – in a big box that was packed up tight with cold packs to keep all of my ingredients as fresh and chilled as possible. Each of the recipes have their own box containing everything needed to create your handpicked yummy (and healthy) meals.

I opened up each recipe box just to make sure everything was there and looked good – and oh my gosh everything was perfect! All of the ingredients were nice and cold, which was good considering my items included meats like chicken and beef and dairy like sour cream. Even the produce looked nice and fresh, the tomatoes didn’t even look bruised at all!

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The recipes were super easy to follow, and turned out tasting awesome! Just for funsies I took comparison pictures of the recipe in the book vs. the one I made. Surprisingly enough my creations actually looked decent. (obviously I need to work on my plating though 😉 )

The mozzarella crusted chicken was easy and yummy, and I actually loved the roasted tomatoes – which is saying something because I absolutely loathe any tomatoes unless in sauce or ketchup form.

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I was excited that I was able to have such a broad range of recipes, it allowed me to get things that both Zach and I love (he’s addicted to Chinese food and I to Mexican). This not only allowed the best of both worlds but brought a great variety to the meals. Say goodbye to boring repetitive meals!

We made the stir-fried beef and broccoli at the end of the week because, well, I couldn’t resist the idea of having my very own Stir-Friday (shout out to Archer fans ❤ ). While I wasn’t a fan of the beef, overall the dish was super yummy. I probably would’ve just seasoned the beef a little bit more.

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Did I mention that all of these amazing recipes were ridiculously easy to make? Like, ohmygosh they look awesome and restaurant-worthy (and again, HEALTHY) but I was able to make them all in about 30 – 45 minutes! Which is great considering I get off work at 7. So normally me getting off late meant not eating until nearly 10 or 11, but with these meals I was sitting down to eat by 8:30 – 9!

It’s kind of amazing how just having everything gathered together and ready to go makes cooking easier.

Have I mentioned that I’m in love with Mexican food? Almost any time, day or night, you can ask if I want a burrito and I will say HELL YES. But typically my burritos are definitely NOT meat free. That being said, I am obsessed with these sweet potato & black bean tacos. ❤ They’re so fresh and spicy but sweet all in one. The sweet potato is a surprisingly great addition to a taco.

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And of course, a special shout out to the design of the recipe booklet itself. It’s so beautifully set up and designed, just looking at the booklet gets me all excited to get cooking! Included is also a little info about the nutrition per serving, which includes the basics like calorie count and carbs per serving. Great for if you’re trying to watch how many calories/carbs you’re taking in.

Overall, I think Hello Fresh is a great service. While it may seem costly – about $60 per week for 3 meals for 2 people – they provide great, fresh ingredients and awesome recipes to go along. And although you only get enough to really make a serving (maybe 2 in some cases) per person, it means that you’re cutting out leftovers yes. But for people like Zach and I, leftovers often just get forgotten in the back of the fridge. Therefore having fewer servings means wasting less! Plus, if you’re watching your waist, not having a lot of extra food means you won’t even be able to overeat during your meal.

It may seem expensive (again, $60 a week for 3 meals – or $100 for 5) to be subscribed to Hello Fresh, think about how much money you spend at the grocery store per week. On average, a 2 person household spent anywhere between $73 – $143 on groceries every week in 2014. You also have to consider how much you end up spending on items you don’t even actually need every time you go shopping – you can’t say that tub of double fudge brownie ice cream is something you actually planned on getting.

I also look at it as a great way to branch out and try new dishes. These are things that you might come across on Pinterest – and then never try, if you’re like me – or in a cookbook or magazine that you’d buy or never pick up if you actually own it. Plus, once you’ve used the ingredients to make your meals you’re still left with all of the recipes for what you cooked, plus the other options that you had available to choose from for that week. So if you really like something, you can remake it (and use them during a week that you skip on Hello Fresh). I know I’ll definitely be doing the sweet potato tacos again soon!

Now for what you’ve all been waiting for – how to get $40 off of your first order! All you have to do is CLICK HERE FOR YOUR DISCOUNT!

Have you guys tried a food service like Hello Fresh? What did you think? Would you do it again/regularly? Let me know in the comments below!

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*I am not affiliated with or being paid by Hello Fresh, nor am I receiving any other form of compensation by the comapnie/s mentioned in the post above. the referral link above is a $40 discount, but will also earn me $20 on my account* 

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300 Follower Giveaway!!!

OH MY GOSH GUYS!!! We did it! We hit 300 followers! It seems like just yesterday we were celebrating hitting the 100 follower mark!

I want to thank all of you so, so, SO much for sticking around. I know we bloggers say it all the time, but I literally couldn’t have done it without you all. It’s an incredible feeling, to know that so many people have similar interests as you, and that they all think that your content is good enough to keep up with. And to look back and see where it all started, and through each post getting better and growing, it’s an amazing feeling.

Because when you blog, you do it because you want to connect to other people. And when you start off as just a shy little nail art blogger and blossom into an open, nail/beauty/geekery blogger…it just seems unreal sometimes that so many other people think that you’re good enough to stick around with you. Whenever I feel doubts about myself or my blog or where it’s going, I always remember that I have all of these people – YOU GUYS – that genuinely want to read what I post.

So thank you. All of you. I really appreciate it.

But now let’s get to the good part! This giveaway is going to be just a little bit different from the last one, so let’s get to the details.

I’ll be giving away not one, not two, but THREE gift cards this go ’round, each one will be a $25 E-Gift Card to either Think Geek or Ulta (the chosen winners may only choose ONE).

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source: thinkgeek.com

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source: ulta.com

So here’s the breakdown.

I don’t hold giveaways often, but when I do, the prizes are purchased by myself as a gift to my followers. Entrants must be:

  1. 18 years of age or older
  2. a United States resident
  3. a follower of my blog

HOW TO ENTER:

All you have to do is comment below, this time let’s make it something funny, clever, or witty (but let’s keep it clean guys).

*the funniest, most clever, etc, will NOT indicate the winner, I’m just choosing this way to keep it interesting (and to make sure you guys are paying attention ;)*

And if you really want one of those gift cards, you can like this post as an additional entry! That’s right! This time you can have up to TWO entries, but you MUST comment below first. A like will NOT be considered an entry unless you have made a comment as well.

 The giveaway is open as of now, and will close Wednesday, March 1st. The winners will be chosen at random by using random.org.

THE WINNERS WILL BE ANNOUNCED ON

FRIDAY, MARCH 3RD 2017

Best of luck! I can’t wait to read all of your silly/funny comments!

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NOTE: I am not receiving any form of payment or compensation for this post. I am not affiliated in any way with the above mentioned companies/brands/organizations. The prizes will be purchased by me, for the sole purpose of gifting the 3 winners, and as a way for thanking my followers.