The Lash Depot Store Review

From the first glance, you knew they were meant to be. It is something about them that makes everyone rave over them. Yes, lashes! They are the beauty enhancer you want in your everyday look. When your lashes are on point, you really do not need anymore makeup. Well, a little lip color and you are poppin!

Lash extensions are one of the biggest things in makeup right now. Everyone is wearing them.

I must say that the few times I have worn lashes, I felt beautified. I know many women can agree, and that is why so many ladies wear lashes on the every day basis or even have individual lashes put on that last a few weeks. My eyes look dreamy with the lashes. The lashes are definitely an appealing piece to have on. So, if you have not tried lash extensions or you are looking for the latest in lashes read on.

The Lash Depot sent me a few sets of their Boss Lady lashes to try out. I was really excited to receive them and could not wait to try them. Of course, I did not wear them until I wanted to have that extra glitz of glamour. I did my makeup as usual, very basic day-to-day wear, then I added the lashes. There was a major difference between my mascara and the lashes. I truly took on the look of a boss.

The Boss Lady lashes by The Lash Depot are mink lashes. They are well packaged, and they are of great quality. The lashes are packed with an eyelash wand. I have worn the same set twice with no problems. I use the duo lash glue as an adhesive. The lashes do not come off until I pull them off. And for someone that does not wear lashes consistently, the Boss Lady lashes were very comfortable, hardly remembered I had them on.

I truly recommend this product. I am a beauty lover, and I believe in buying quality beauty products. These lashes are surely one I will add to my stash of makeup. Even for the ladies that are like myself, you may not wear lashes except for special occasions, the lashes carried at The Lash Depot are great to have on hand for those moments.

A great feature about The Lash Depot is that they are wholesalers. So, for those of you that are looking to rack up or add something new to your lash inventory, try THE LASH DEPOT! And if you just want lashes for yourself, check out their monthly subscriptions. There is something for everyone at The Lash Depot!

Thank you Lash Depot for sending me your lashes! When I want to have my ultra bossed-up look, I will wear my Boss Lady lashes.

Check out the Lash Depot at http://thelashdepot.com/ and Instagram, @thelashdepotstore, for all of their offers. Plus, receive 15% off your first order. Use the code NEWLASH!

Happy lash wearing, Jewels!

Build Yourself This 2019


“I am the sparkle in the gold.
I AM AMAZING!”
Donna Marie

The newness it brings, along with cheerfulness we sing, it’s a delightful thing. That’s the optimism that comes with the New Year. We excitedly bring it in, with hopes of achieving what last year did not win. But, this is not the time for any more excuses. This is the time for us all to embrace the hope the New Year has given us. 

For this reason, you have to accept the challenge that has been granted you, life. And you were only given one. So this year marks the start of completing those New Year resolutions. While failed attempts may spring about, you cannot give up. This is your year to achieve the unbelievable. Will it require hard work, and take you out of your comfort zone? Yes, but it will be worth it. Those nights you go down with the moon and wake with the rising sun, will all be for the good of accomplishing the life you have always wanted.  

This 2019, embark on creating the life you have seen yourself having. No more dreaming, time for your dreams to come to life. Walk in the path you have always known was meant for you. This is your year. There isn’t a more prominent time than now, to be in love with yourself enough that you give your dreams a chance to come alive.

There is nothing like waking up knowing that you are going to strive toward your greatness that day. Because too often, we drag ourselves out of bed to fulfill the dreams of someone else. But, it never has to be that way again.

You have the power within you to make greatness occur in your life. There are two simple steps to make this happen: believe in yourself and getting started. Once, you believe that you can possibly do it, you’re ready to take the first step. And then, you are on your way!

Last year, I learned just what it meant to step out of my own way and work towards my goals. And that was just one tiny step towards the big picture I envision of myself.

Jewels, if you do not have any goals this year other than surviving, I encourage you to build on the gift you have and elevate yourself. You deserve it.

Happy New Year, Jewels! Be You!

The Keto Diet: Does it Really Work?

Ever since I can remember, I have always sought out the next diet fad. One may work for a little while, eat wrong and you gain every bit of what you lost back. Or worse, it is not healthy or doctor approved. But mostly, diets are extremely difficult because we are not eating enjoyable food. Essentially, that is truly what it is.

Well, just to give a little bit of history. I can recall doing Tae Bo with my sister after she had my niece to attempt to lose weight, to tell you how long ago that was my niece is now in college. She lost weight, I gained. I have tried cutting out all the white foods, that lasted for a few days, and I lost nothing. How about joining the gym in December in hopes of actually going through with my tenth year in a row New Year’s resolution. EPIC FAIL! Nothing has worked. Atkins, personal trainer, gym for two weeks then off, Miami Beach Diet, going vegetarian for a while, drinking a gallon of water a day. None of these fads work. And this is not to say that they don’t. Perhaps they just don’t work for me.

I have been successful with Quick Weight Loss Centers; however, if you cheat, or not even eat all of your food, you will gain, or your weight will stall. And when this happens you have to eat dissatisfying foods to get back to losing. By the way, the food was not bad, it is just that I was always hungry. And bonus, you could only eat their snacks. That got pretty expensive, pretty fast.

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Bacon Fried Cabbage, yum!

So, I was left thinking that I should just accept being fat. Earlier this year, my cousin introduced me to the Keto Diet. Bacon? What? That sounds so unhealthy. But when I saw the weight dropping from her body, I was like healthy or not, I have to give this a try.

Well fast forward to now, I have lost over thirty pounds, I have a ton of energy, and I feel great! I could have never said that with Quick Weight Loss. I was tired and hungry. With keto you are full off of the healthy fats you are consuming, which has allowed me to fast up to thirty-seven hours. One day I hope to reach seventy-two hours. But the point is, KETO WORKS!

Keto is not a diet where you can just say don’t eat this, eat that. Well kind of. Yet, it requires a lot of knowledge. This is especially so if you are anything like I was, keto is so unhealthy. You do not have to eat bacon. And healthy fats are not the same as McDonald’s.

While I would love to post a before and after picture, I am completely embarrassed at this time. But all of my family and friends that have seen me recently see a major difference. Post baby, I am down over fifty pounds. In clothing, I have gone from a size 18 to some 12s but comfortably and loosely size 14 clothing. All in all, I feel so much better. And the biggest component to my desire to lose weight is to have the ability to keep up with my outgoing daughter. I could be much smaller if I had not enjoyed my summer vacation as much as I did the last month of summer, but what the heck. My body paid for it. I surely was not feeling my best and drained.

Well…What is keto? Keto is a high fat, low carb diet. Essentially, you will want to calculate your macros. Simply google “macros calculator” and follow the directions from there. As far as carbs, it depends on who you talk to. I see weight changes as long as I do not eat over 27g of carbs a day. But I like to stay under 20. 20g of carbs should be your goal. That is the ultimate number for weight loss. However, some people suggest not going over 50g of carbs a day. As I have mentioned, there are so many thoughts on what is really keto and how it works. With that being said, I am not telling anyone how to eat or what keto really is. Anytime I share about anything related to food and weight loss it is from what has worked for me. I am not a doctor. I just know what has worked for myself and my friends.

Now there is some extra calculating that goes into this such as net carbs. I will get into that later on. For now, please know that you must avoid sugar, bread, pasta, carbonated drinks, aspartame. Consume meat, fatty oils such as avocado oil, olive oil, nuts- my favorites are pecans and almonds, and dark and green leafy vegetables. Pork skins go great with many dishes. They’ll become your best friend. There is so much to share. But at least you can start with something as easy as eggs and sausage for breakfast, a salad with avocado, cheese you shred- I’ll explain later, bacon, chicken- I use rotisserie chicken sometimes,  a boiled egg, you can add sliced almonds, pecans- whatever you like as long as it is low carb, and a low carb salad dressing. For the dressing, you can never go wrong with ranch or cesar. I love the Olive Garden Italian dressing and their Parmesan Ranch. They have like less than 1g of carbs. And for dinner, a shrimp and asparagus foil pack is great or instead of shrimp you can have chicken or steak or salmon. You eat really good with Keto. The recipes are endless. Simply google or pinterest them.

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Meal prepped salads for lunch

Lastly, caffeine is your best friend. If you like coffee like that. I am an addict, so I have to have it every day. I have a post that shares how I have my coffee. But to add to it, I normally have black tea iced or hot with stevia and heavy whipping cream. Or, I’ll have iced coffee with heavy whipping cream or half and half with stevia. And sometimes, I drink my caffeine beverages black with or without stevia. This is due to dairy products sometimes cause your weight to stall. You cannot have milk because it contains sugar, but there are many dairy products you can consume- I’ll get into this later. Again, there is just so much to this way of eating.

I truly support low carb/ keto lifestyle because I am not limited on what I can eat. I am fuller longer, and I have so much more energy. Stay tuned for more news and facts about the keto diet. If you are uncomfortable with the fact that keto is a high fat diet, try low carb. When we cut a drastic amount of carbs and sugar from our diets, you are bound to see results.

To good health Jewels!

Caffeine Queen Indeed

Tea has always been my thing. And during the Christmas season at Starbucks I always looked forward to their Caramel Brulee Frappuccino. Besides that frap, I barely drank coffee. But as of this year, I am like coffee queen. I have at least one coffee a day. While at work, I would bring black or green tea, hot or cold, and after work I would have coffee.

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Drinks while shopping at the mall!

And while I love pulling up to Starbucks drive through, it is quite costly. No lie, I still go there at least twice a week because I be out and about so I quench my thirst with coffee, but now I try my hardest to always make my caffeine beverages at home. Here are my favorites to make at home.

In the  morning, I enjoy consuming a hot cup of coffee. My favorite ones are of course Starbucks Veranda Blend Light Blond Roast- this is a light coffee, Starbucks Cinnamon Dolce- this one is like a mild roast, and because I am a NOLA girl I love my Cafe Du Monde coffee au lait- so I have the Cafe Du Monde coffee as well- this one is also a medium roast.

Throughout the day, I like to have iced coffee. For this, I love love love Starbucks Unsweetened Blonde Roast Iced Coffee. If you like a light tasting coffee this one is perfect!

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I never drink my coffee black. Tea, that is no problem, but with coffee it is not happening. Rarely do I add light cream, when I do that is at Starbucks, but for the most part I always add heavy whipping cream- at home a lot, and two stevia sugars. When, I am treating myself I will add caramel syrup, sugar free vanilla, or the sugar free cinnamon dolce syrup. At home, I pretty much add the same things to my coffee and tea. But again, when I am treating myself I will add sugar free salted caramel syrup or the sugar free hazelnut syrup by Torani, or Starbucks sugar free vanilla syrup. I do not use these very often, like rarely. I used to though. But now ,I am trying to lay off the chemical sugars and aspartame and all that jazz, so I go with stevia. I also like to add ground cinnamon and 100% cocoa powder to my coffee. This really helps since I am trying to get away from sugar. The goal is sugarless coffee. I have already gone from classic and cane syrup to sugar free syrups to 4 stevia sugars to 2. I am on my way!

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I have several different stevia sugars at home, but my favorite one is the same one that is served at Starbucks, Whole Earth Sugar. I like it because it is grainy like real sugar, not a powder like other stevia sweeteners.

Everything I have shared can be found at your local grocery store.

And for those that are sugar and carb conscious, the heavy whipping cream, coffee, and Whole Earth Sugar are all low-carb, so pour up, Jewels!

Candle Obsessed!

Summer begets the sweetest times for teachers. Oh Summer, how I love thee! It has been half a year since I have blogged, but I have thought about blogging every day. Just so little time to do anything other than be a teacher during the school year. There is a huge difference in being a high school teacher and an elementary school teacher. Will provide those details later. As always there is so much to share, but for now lets get down to it. Candles. Oh, MY, Gosh!!! My latest obsession besides a few others things, including raising the sweetest baby girl on earth. ANYWAYS…

If you are anything like me, you enjoy being welcomed by the pleasant smell of something warm and delightful when you enter your front door. I literally have tried everything out there to make my home smell pleasant: plug-ins, room sprays, Renuzit gel fresheners, Febreeze small spaces, multiple sent sachets from Kirklands, and everything in between. Now, the Renuzit air fresheners and Febreeze small spaces do work. However, after three days the smell is not as strong. And my home just does not smell like the Kirkland’s store.

All of this is not to say that candles are the best answer to your home smelling whimsically. Because they too can become ineffective. Here is how candles are the answer to your home smelling pleasant prayers.

Depending on how large your home is one to three candles can do the trick. A while ago, I discovered the magic of candles. I have not always been on this hype. So one day while preparing breakfast, I burned my new candle from Bath and Body Works. On the way out to run errands, I blew out my candle and went on my way. Upon return, instantly when I opened the door, the warmth and smell of the candle hit me. Pure BLISS! In this moment, I knew I had mastered a way to come home to a wonderful smelling home.

Now, I have been on a buying candles maniac spree since Thanksgiving of last year. My best friend always talks about the candles at Bath and Body Works, and when I go to her home it always smells yummy. So she told me when they had their next sale, and I have been hooked ever since. I have never purchased their candles full price. I always buy them with a coupon or when they have a sale. Because of this,
I buy quite a few each time I go. Moreover, these candles make the perfect gift. Like literally everytime I buy them, I always end up giving one or two to my mom; she too loves candles, just not as crazy as I do.

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By no means am I saying throw away your Yankee candles, but they have nothing on the candles at Bath and Body Works. As I have mentioned, the smell is so loud the aroma of one candle spreads throughout my home. And after blowing them out, if you leave the top off for the wax to cool, when you return home you will still be able to smell them.

I have tons of the Bath and Body Works candles. I have to buy multiples of the ones I love because often times the scents are seasonal, like many of their other well loved items. Such as the yummy scent Blueberry Sugar which came out last Christmas. During the after Christmas sale I bought five more. It smells scrumptious! It is available on Amazon for ridiculously high prices, so hopefully it comes out again this Christmas.

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Found this in the bag. These are great hints that we already know. But #3 is especially helpful!

What I have enjoyed doing is buying the scents for the different seasons, so during Christmas time I had Tis the Season– smells like Christmas, Cinnamon Caramel Swirl– which I still burn now, it goes well when I making pancakes, and Blueberry Sugar– this one I burn all the time. These candles truly brought in the Christmas spirit.

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After Christmas, I fell in love with several scents that I buy frequently so I can have them on hand in case they ever stop selling them: Watermelon Lemonade, which I bought the other day at the end of their Semi-Annual Sale, Georgia Peach, Peach Bellini, and Strawberry Mimosa.

I love the candle Sweet Summer Days, perfect scent reminder of the beach. Smells like summer!

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I enjoy the aroma of burning candles in different rooms of my home. It makes my home feel warm and homely.

Like I said before, the candles work so well for me because I burn them often. But, another home fragrance essential you may want to keep on hand that works well is the Bath and Body Works concentrated room sprays. When the mist comes out it is quite dry; hence, not creating a slippery mess on the floor. PERFECTION! I love these. I spray them when necessary, the candles are good on their own. I use the spray especially for my living room because I do not burn any candles in their due to my little one.

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One of my favorite scents

If you’re just as candle obsessed please share your favorite candles.

To sweet smelling yummy homes Jewels!

Meal Prepping: To be OR not to be

Everyone always has such wonderful things to say about it. Meal prepping saves you time; meal prepping helps you save money; meal prepping keeps you on track with your dietary plan; etc. So meal prepping receives such high praise. And I am sure it is all that and a bag of chips, but I lack time to do such meal prepping. But, I thought what the heck, let’s try this!

Yesterday evening, I decided I would give it a try since school was canceled for today due to inclement winter weather conditions. I had nothing to lose, especially not time. It took me about three hours to prep. Within that time, I managed to cook three meals, prepare four salads, and snacks. I do feel a weight lifted off my shoulders, in the since that I will not have to cook when I come home from work, which does save time and energy.

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After this first week goes by, I’ll be sure to share how meal prepping actually worked out for me. I’m sure my family will enjoy not having to wait for dinner to be ready, and the snacks are already bagged, ready for consumption. The biggest plus for me is not having to wash dishes. Yes!!! Those dishes are a pain.

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If you all have tried meal prepping, please share tips on how to save time and what works best for you. I am really excited about continuing to prepare meals in this manner.

Bon appetit, Jewels! 😉

Ginger Tea, Please!

Happy New Year! We are well into two weeks of 2018! Hopefully, you are keeping up with your new year resolutions or even trying to *wink wink.

I have always wanted to live a healthy lifestyle- key word, wanted. But it got real for me and became a necessary change, when I discovered I was going to be a mom. I knew then, I had to change my diet to one more suitable to raising a healthy baby. Then, when she arrived I knew then as well I would have to continue eating well for her, as she was getting all of her supplements from me as I was nursing her. However, now it is totally different. I must have a healthy lifestyle just to keep up with my busy bee.

I am not going to go into detail, just yet as to my dietary meal plan, but I must share one aspect of my diet that I love and look forward to.

Never have I ever been into ginger. Sure, I have heard of it. But, I didn’t need that, so I thought. Now, I love it! I still haven’t tried eating it. That day will come. If you have yet to make your own cup of morning sunshine, not orange juice but rather ginger tea, you must try! It is so easy to make and very enjoyable.

I am such a Starbucks junkie. I used to get tea from Starbucks every morning. I love Starbucks so much that my students for my birthday and Christmas gave me tons of Starbucks gift cards because they know I come in with a venti tea every morning. I may treat myself once in a while with Starbucks, but for now my new go to tea is Ginger tea.

This tea is completely homemade. This recipe has been around forever, but it took 2018 for me to actually try. Better late than never, right?

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Ingredients:

  • 8-10 oz of water
  • half a ginger (depends on your preference)
  • juice of half a lemon
  • tablespoon of honey

Instructions:

  1. Clean your ginger well.
  2. Cut half a ginger root (depends on how strong of taste you want, I use a small ginger and cut half of it).
  3. Thinly slice the ginger. I cut mine like thin chips.
  4. Boil 8-10 oz of water and place the sliced ginger in the water.
  5. Once the water reaches boiling point, allow your ginger and water to boil for about 4-6 minutes.
  6. Strain the water into a mug, add lemon, honey, and stir.
  7. Enjoy!

You can definitely add more to this tea to make it more flavorful and to suit your taste buds. I enjoy it this way, plus it is easy to make quickly in the morning.

There are health benefits to ginger, lemon, and honey. To find out more, use one of the greatest gifts ever, GOOGLE! You’ll find out much more than I can ever tell you. Just know that you’ll thank me later. This tea is a keeper. As I discover more delicious and healthy alternatives to substitute my food habits, I will share them!

Hope to hear from those of you that try Ginger Tea!

I also have been adding different fruits and veggies to my water, and this has been a great way to get my daughter to drink more water, too!

Happy New Year, Jewels! More Ginger Tea, Please!