Friday, May 30, 2014


It's officially wedding season!  After 2 weddings in 3 weeks, there is no denying it now.  {I'll get around to blogging my BFF's eventually, there are still tons of photos to sort through}  I was so grateful to be able to finally take a trip with my husband.  It was a much needed break vacation trip.  I hesitate to use break or vacation because it wasn't really either of those things.  We hadn't spent much time with Jason's family over the past 2 years so we squeezed in every possible second with everyone while we were there.   Long past our bed times (I'm talking 3-4am) we sat around in the hotel lobby telling stories and catching up. Getting less than 7 hours of sleep during our 48 hour trip was totally worth it. (I say that because we took Monday to do absolutely nothing but recover on the couch)

The highlight of the weekend for Jason was finally getting to meet his nephew!

Is he not the cutest thing EVER?!?  We love him!  We can't wait to live near him and watching him grow.  {In case it isn't obvious, Jason picked out his outfit for the wedding}

The bride and groom could not have asked for a more perfect day.

Jason & his grandfather rocking the bow ties.

The bride looked absolutely incredible, as always.  She works in fashion so I knew her dress was going to be phenomenal and it was indeed.


Jason's brothers, their wives, and baby Liam.

Being that it was Memorial Day weekend, and a military wedding, it was only fitting to have a toast in remembrance of those who never made it home.  Some people were upset and offended that people were celebrating on a weekend that is dedicated to honoring heroes that made the ultimate sacrifice.  I understand that sentiment but for me, every day is Memorial Day, every day we remember and honor those men and women who never returned home, every day is dedicated to them.  Every day my husband puts on his black metal bracelet and we remember.  Every day I see photos of friends who are raising children with out their father.  I guess what I'm saying is, I don't personally have a problem with a wedding over Memorial Day weekend (on Memorial Day might be a LITTLE strange, but who am I to judge). 

Congrats LT & MRS!  We're so happy this day finally come for you both and we could be there to share it with you.

Oh, and on the way home, we flew out of Indi the day of the Indianapolis 500 and before our flight boarded there was a little commotion in front of our gate.  Turns out Leann Rimes, who had just sung the National Anthem at the race, was on our flight back to LAX.   Once we landed in LA, I had to make a stop at the bathroom and almost ran into her coming out of a stall.  She had left her water on top of the toilet paper rack so I carried it back out to her and she was most gracious about it.  I tried not to make a big deal out of it, but it was sort of neat to interact with someone so famous.


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Jamberry Nails

Last month a friend gave me a Jamberry Nails sample which I tucked away in a pocket of my purse.  I knew it was there but never took the time to actually give it a try.  I was in the middle of a love affair with gel manicures and didn't have a whole lot of interest in trying something new.  Then after my girlfriends wedding last month I decided my poor nails needed a break.  Then a friend invited me to an online party she was hosting so I decided to dig out the sample I'd been given and try it out.  I clicked over to the Jamberry website, watched an application "how to" video and pulled out my hair dryer.

I was completely blown away by how easy it was to apply the wrap to my nail.

The next day, my friend hosted her online party on Facebook and I decided to not only purchase a few sets but also to become a consultant.

That's right friends, I'm now an independent consultant for Jamberry.

If you're wondering what in the world I'm talking about, let me fill you in.  Jamberry are vinyl nail wraps that you simple heat and apply to your nail.  I not only fell in love with the fun concept and easy process but the company that is family based, never tests on animals, and sells product that is made in the USA!

These are a few of the other things I love about Jamberry!

Once I received my consultant starter kit, I couldn't wait to remove the sample and do a full set on my nails.  Jamberry has hundreds of designs and lots of solid colors as well.  Removing the sample was even easier than applying it and it did zero damage to my nail, unlike my beloved gel manicures.

Each design comes on a sheet like the one below and provides enough wraps to do 2 manicures and 2 pedicures for about $15!  I initially balked at the price but that is about 1/10th of what I would pay for 2 manicures and 2 pedicures at a salon.  Plus I can do them in 15 minutes at my own convenience, I don't have to give up 2 hours of my day to commute to the salon and wait for a lacquer manicure to dry.

If you'd like to try a free sample of Jamberry nail wraps, fill out this form and I'll drop some in the mail to you.  If you'd like to browse the designs or purchase a set, you can do so here.


Friday, May 23, 2014

Elevate Blog Conference

I sat down a dozen times this week to write a recap of my very first blog conference and every single time I just stared at a blank screen, overcome by thoughts and emotions.  I still don't have the perfect words but since the recap link up is today I feel the need to put something down here.

First, I have to start by giving a shout out to Jen {Delightful Deets} and Summer {Munchie's Momma}.  They poured their hearts and souls into putting this conference together and it showed in all of the beautiful details and fun events of the day.  I cannot imagine a better planned conference, they have set the bar high for any conference I attend in the future!


The conference was held at the Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort and the grounds were absolutely stunning, although, this is basically what all of California looks like all of the time.  We ate our meals in the courtyard and I could not have been placed at a table with more incredible women.  The conversations we had were so encouraging and uplifting and non stop!

Through out the day, in addition to eating, we made some crafts, won some prizes (well, I didn't but some luck ladies did) and listened to a couple of incredible speakers!  Desiree from The 36th Avenue spoke about finding and creating your own road.  We live in a world where, especially with social media,  it can be hard to find your unique voice and she encouraged each of us to do just that.  Stephanie who writes at Life Created and Chrissy of Let Me See You Sparkle (who I was so excited to meet) shared lots of good photography tips while Cara from MaskCara made sure we know how to apply make up to look our best in photos.  We also received some fantastic general blogging advice from Ashely of Little Miss Momma and Alissa of Diary of an Addict.

The highlight of the day for me was hearing Lisa Leonard's story of devotion and perseverance (you can read part of it here).  She had 5 simple things to share with us that resonated deeply with me.

Be Loving
Be Yourself
Be Brave
Be Careful
Be Persistent  

I'm so grateful to have met her and gotten to know her.

She also provided me with my favorite take home of the day.  This gorgeous necklace.  You can find more of her pretty jewelry here.  She just launched a "State of the Heart" collection that is so perfect for us military spouses, I've already pre-ordered mine.

The other highlight for me was sharing the day with Kara and Katie.  I'm constantly amazed by the relationships that have come out of this little blog.  I'm so glad to call these ladies friends!

We also found our friend, Melyssa, who is the brains behind Bloggers Giving Back!

After spending the day with these ladies, I understand why some of them travel from far away and continue to attend year after year.  I'm terribly sad that I won't be here next year but, who knows, maybe I'll be one of those people that flies out to Cali to spend the weekend surrounded by beautiful women who understand this whole blogging thing.

I do have a few regrets; coming home with way too many of my own business cards, I so badly wish I had had the time to meet and network with more of these ladies, and not taking a photo with Ashley of Lil Blue Boo.  We bonded instantly over our questionable choices in blog names and she was so fun to be around all day.

Overall, the Elevate conference was everything I had hoped my first conference would be and more, way more.  I'm so glad to have been able to grow relationships that had previously begun and create new ones at the same time.  I'm already itching for my next conference.  Any suggestions?


Thursday, May 22, 2014



Last year, my friend, Kara, shared a great review on her blog of a dress from eShakti.  I absolutely adored her dress and the concept of customized sizes so I ordered one of my own.  Even though I went with their standard sizes, it still fit perfectly.

I'd been not so secretly hoping they would invite me to review one of their dresses, so when eShakti emailed me and asked, I jumped at the opportunity.  I struggled to choose a style this time, there are just so many great options.  Here are some examples of what didn't make the cut:

I love the detail of the neckline but the shade of purple isn't my favorite.

I considered a top but really wanted a dress.

This dress style is the "Jessica" and I almost chose it just for that reason but I already own a LBD that I love.

I finally decided to let Jason help me choose we decided on this fun number.

eShakti allows you to not only customize your dress to your exact measurements but also the neckline, sleeve type, hem length, and weather you want pockets or not.  If you want a v-neck, you can order a v-neck.  If you like short dresses, you can order a short hem.

I went with the dress as pictured, I liked the longer length and the unusual neckline.  Unlike my 1st eShakti dress, I decided to order this dress with my custom measurements.  I had my husband use a piece of string to take each measurement, which is clearly explained for you on the order form, and then I measured that with a measuring tape and it worked out perfectly.  The dress fit just like it should, like it was made specifically for me!

I've said it before, I would make a terrible model, and my husband is far from a professional photographer (although he reluctantly appeases me so I can't complain).

This is the perfect date night dress for me and I even managed to convince myself it's work appropriate.  This is how I wore it to work.  I received tons of compliments and my office isn't super formal so I decided it works.

eShakti was generous enough to provide me with a 10% discount code to share with all of you and if you're a new customer you can add that to the $25 off that they offer for 1st time shoppers.  Use discount code BLEUDRES at checkout to receive the additional 10% off.  You can use this code as many times as you'd like between now and June 21st.

I highly recommend eShakti, especially if you're like 99.9% of women and struggle to find clothes that fit perfectly in all the right areas.

   **I received a free dress in exchange for writing this review.  Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are my own.**


Monday, May 19, 2014

Pantene Beautiful Lengths

I have so much to share with you and even though I've actually had time the past couple weeks, the motivation to write has been lacking.  I attended my very first blogging conference over the weekend and I'm hoping it will light a fire within me and I'll get back to a regular blogging routine.  For now, I'm going to start with a post that's quick and easy.

For the 4th time in my adult life, I donated my hair to an organization that makes wigs for children with cancer.  I didn't have some life altering experience that led me to donate the 1st time or compelled me to keep repeating the act, I simply figure if I'm not using it someone else should.  Why sweep away perfectly good hair when it can be used for something positive?  I don't ever color and I rarely heat treat my hair so it's super healthy and meets all of the requirements for hair donation.

Most people are familiar with Locks of Love, they are, by far, the most popular means for hair donations.  If you're like me and have hair that simply won't grow past a certain length (or you're impatient, also like me) and you're unable to meet the 10 inch length requirements for Locks of Love, you have another option, Pantene Beautiful Lengths.  Pantene only requires 8 inches.  I went to the salon today thinking I had enough for Locks of Love but I would have been left with way less hair that I'm comfortable with so I decided to send my hair to Pantene this time.

I don't know why, but I was super nervous this time.  I went to a new stylist so I think that had a lot to do with it but I went armed with about 30 photos of what I wanted (and about a dozen of what I did NOT want) and Marissa did a fantastic job.  I've been so ready for this cut for so long (I kept putting it off because I wanted it long for all the wedding's I've been in over the past 3 years) that now I'm kind of obsessed with it.  I think I took more selfies today than I have in my entire life!

 It even looks good from the back!

I had toyed around with the idea of bangs but decided not to get them so when I got home I pinned some hair back to see what they would have looked like and I think I'm glad I decided against them but I'm not sure if it's because I don't like them or I'm just not used to them.  What do you think!?  Should I go back for bangs?

My chop inspired this guy to do some hair maintenance of his own.  I'm kind of sad to see the stache go but I'm elated to have his lips back!  I hated kissing him through that dang thing and now I don't have to!  I may or may not have insisted on a marathon make out session after this photo!

So here's how this is going to go.  I'm going to love this cut and keep it for a couple of months, then I'll begin the long, painful growing out stage again and I'll hate my hair for about a year, then it will be long and I'll love it for a few months before I get bored and whack it off again!  It's a cycle I've come to know and love over the past decade.

If you can't grow your hair or don't want to cut your hair, you can help me fight cancer by donating to my Relay for Life campaign via the button on the right, or by clicking here.

Have a great Monday!  I encourage you to do something to improve the life of others this week.