Curly Crafty Mom: September 2016

Friday, September 30, 2016

October Monthly Goals


This year I've decided to set three monthly goals for myself each month. These will be lighter goals that I should be able to finish within the month. I used to do yearly resolutions, but I wanted to try out monthly goals this year. I am really enjoying it so far and I feel like I accomplished a lot with my January-September Goals. The recap for my September Goals will be at the bottom of this post.

Here are my October Goals!

1. Finish Chicago Marathon!
In October I'll be running in the Chicago Marathon. A long time dream of mine that I've pushed back on for so many reasons (excuses) for so long. A dream that will really be happening after EIGHTEEN weeks of training. HARD training... miles and miles of training. I'm excited... I'm nervous... I can't believe it is less then 2 weeks out now. Some of you have asked me what's next? Well, you'll have to follow along next month to find out!

2. Get Back into Reading the Bible
There is a Hobby Lobby 2 miles away from my house. Yeah, this is very dangerous... but, oh do I love Hobby Lobby sometimes! I have been wanting to get back into reading the bible... all I have been doing is going to church and my daily prayer journal. I miss reading the bible and I have been wanting to start Jesus Calling all over again. I have the e-book, but I really thought I'd get more out of it with the HARD copy this time. So, what was looking at me while I went to check out the other day? They had the book (along with a lot of other religious books) right by the checkout and I didn't even hesitate to grab it. My goal is to set aside some time in the morning to read and to work on my prayer journal as well. I have a blogging friend that reads Jesus Calling every morning and she writes a little note on the pages on the book when a prayer is answered, she feels God's presence, etc. I love this idea and want to start it myself. So, my goal for October is to start this up again... and I'll continue it for as long as I can.

I also would like to get one of those bibles that you can journal in eventually (that will be later down the road). 

Oh, and P.S. That Skinny Cow caramel chocolate candy bar is the absolute bomb! I don't buy it because it is low calorie, I buy it because it really IS the best caramel bar ever!

3. Date Day with the Hubs
Brian and I usually take a day off together in the fall, so I thought it'd be fun to set aside a day to do just that. I feel life has been so busy lately, that it would be nice to spend some quality and uninterrupted time together. I was thinking perhaps breakfast at a place known for their gooey butter cake and maybe a hike in a new to us park (with all the pretty fall foliage). 

I know we are going to Chicago for a few days, but with the marathon we will be pretty busy. I am also hoping to meet Jill from Doused in Pink while there!! :)

How did I do on my September Goals?

1. Decorate Inside and Out for Fall
FallSilhouette1_650 Terranium2_650
I did finish this and posted a couple of fall decor projects that I did around the house. I am hoping to share how I decorated the outside of my house for the fall in a couple of weeks.

2. Stencil Bathroom Wall
I did get this done and we have new lighting AND a new mirror! I plan to share a mini-reveal post in late October with what I've done so far.

3. Take a Day OFF, to MYSELF.
Of course, I waited until the LAST day of the month to do this.. but, DONE!


And, my friend Lauren from Mom Home Guide is also sharing her monthly goals today!

Are you doing monthly goals? What are they? I'd love to hear about them in the comments!

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Thursday Fashion Files Link Up #81 - A Tulle Skirt is SO MUCH FUN!

Welcome to Thursday Fashion Files!

Welcome to Thursday Fashion Files with Jill at Doused in Pink and Carrie at Curly Crafty Mom! We are excited to have you here and would love to have you link up one of your latest outfits with us.

We are always looking for Co-Hosts for Thursday Fashion Files. If you haven't signed up to Co-Host, but are interested, sign up by clicking HERE.

Visit our Thursday Fashion Files Pinterest board! We will be pinning our top two picks along with our own outfits for that week. Be sure to click HERE to join our Pinterest board!

Hi everyone! I am back again this Thursday with some fall fashion! Today I am sharing my very first tulle skirt, which I just LOVE. This skirt is from StyleWe and is black and a midi length. It's not too 'fluffy', so perfect for wearing out and looking stylish. I ordered a size small and it fits perfectly. 

I can't wait to style this skirt with a red/black plaid shirt, b/w stripes, you name it and I've been pinning it! :) I normally don't wear a lot of heels, but this tulle skirt SCREAMS for heels, so you got it. I also wore my embellished top with it and this simple outfit is just perfect. I figure that the tulle skirt is busy enough on its own, so why not keep the top simple? 







What I'm Wearing:
Tulle Skirt - c/o StyleWe
Embellished Top - Old Navy (Old) - Similar, Similar*
Quilted Heels with Bow (Old) - Similar, Similar*
Renegade Cluster Bracelet - Stella & Dot*
Essie Couture Polish - Caviar Bar

(*This post contains affiliate links.)
Full Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. This skirt was gifted to me in exchange for this post. All opinions are 100% mine.

Hope you enjoy this and if you don't already have a tulle skirt, be sure to snag this one on StyleWe! You can also visit their Pinterest page or StyleWe Blog.

Follow Jill:

Follow Carrie:
Bloglovin'FacebookTwitterInstagramGoogle+, Pinterest, SnapChat: @curlycraftymom

Link Up Guidelines:
1. Feel free to grab our button to display on your blog sidebar. Help spread the word and share about our link up community.

2. Follow your hosts. Leave a comment letting us know you are a new follower and we will be sure to follow back.

3. Share the love by visiting and commenting to at least three other blogs in the link up. 

Don't miss out, sign up for an email reminder about our party:


Guest Co-Host:
Abby from Life in the Fash Lane is our co-host this week. Be sure to stop by and visit her if you haven't already!

We will each select a Top Two every week... visit both hosts blogs to see if YOU were chosen.
My pick from last weeks party is Erin from Happily Howards.

Now let's get linking!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Make Dinner and Nightly Chores Easier #HelloFreshPics #cbias

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HelloFreshPics #cbias #CollectiveBias

Today I am thrilled to share with you my experience with HelloFresh, an easy way to bring healthy prepped dinners to your doorstep. Ever since the lazy days of summer ended and school started, my time has been limited in the evening as we get home late from after school activities and the kids need help with their endless homework. That is where HelloFresh comes in to play, making dinner easier with already made up recipes that will help you have dinner on the table for the entire family in just 30 minutes!

Save $35.00 off your first box with this discount code: CARRIEA35.

Inside the box with all of your HelloFresh meals will be a booklet that has all of your recipes in it.

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Here is the recipe for the Fig and Quinoa Salad along with the ingredients and directions.

Here you'll see all of the ingredients in the box. If you order meat, it will be stored separately in the bigger box that arrives with all of your meals in-between ice packets. I love how everything is individually labeled!

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I had a lot of fun preparing the Fig and Quinoa Salad! All I had to do was wash the vegetables, chop, prepare the dressing and toss the salad!

Here are what all of the recipes looked like after I prepared them:

Fig and Quinoa Salad with Arugula, Mint and Feta


Jamie's Oozy Zucchini Risotto with Mozzarella & Fresh Basil

Dukkah-Crusted Pork Chops
With HelloFresh, cooking at home can be a lot easier! They've developed, tested and verified recipes that will work in YOUR kitchen! They've done the hard work for you and you just need to finish it up. HelloFresh packages everything you need, with easy practical steps that make meal prep easy! Meal planning and grocery shopping can take a lot of your time, why not let HelloFresh take care of it?

Each HelloFresh box comes with three meals. Each meal serves two adults and two children, or four adults totaling 12 servings per box.

There is even an app that assists you in the kitchen and lets you manage your subscription on the go. Its substantial recipe archive allows you to revisit your favorites anytime.

In January 2016, HelloFresh and Chef Jamie Oliver teamed up to get more people cooking fresh food through a partnership that provides new cooking inspiration from Jamie and the exact ingredients needed for exciting recipes delivered straight to subscribers doors. This recipe pictured above (Jamie's Oozy Zucchini Risotto with Mozzarella & Fresh Basil) is one of Chef Jamie Oliver's recipes! It was delicious!

HelloFresh recipes are nutritionally balanced to include a protein, fresh vegetables, and a starch. Every box comes with a complete nutritional profile and the approval of our in-house R.D., Rebecca Lewis. In a given month, HelloFresh subscribers enjoy more than 50 types of fresh produce and more than fresh 20 herbs and spices, and experience as many as 15 cuisines. It makes me feel better to know I am feeding my entire family the best meal I can given our time restraints. My daughter even gets involved and helps me prepare dinner!

DIY Check Off Jars
Now, I wanted to share with you how I've gotten my kids back on a routine since they've gone back to school. To make our evenings easier, I've made a 'Check Off Jar' that the kids need to work on once they're home from school This helps them learn a little independence and it also helps save ME time so that I can prepare the simple HelloFresh meal for dinner... and still have time to enjoy my family!

3 Jars (or more, depending on how many children you have)
Jumbo Popsicle Sticks
Washi Tape in Various Colors

Label the jars with a chalk marker.

Pick 2 colors per kid and add the washi tape to the top of the popsicle stick. This will help them know which popsicle sticks belong to them.

ToDoJars8 ToDoJars9 
Label each popsicle stick with a chore. You can even make certain ones for specific days of the week or leave them out on certain days (for instance, you child may take a bath only every other day).

When the child completes their chore, they put the popsicle stick in the 'Done' jar.

Is your life hectic since school has started? What have you done to make your evenings easier? If you're looking for an easier dinner solution, be sure to check out HelloFresh!

You can save $35.00 off your first box with this discount code: CARRIEA35.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Ipsy Review #22 - September. My last Ipsy bag for awhile.

I'm on #22 with Ipsy and this bag was just meh. Which, is ok.. there are some really awesome bags and some so-so ones. I will definitely use all of these products, but nothing made me super excited. I also wanted to mention that I've decided to take a break from Ipsy for awhile. I really need to start using up the products they've already sent me (multiple black eyeliners, highlighters, etc.) and I've also been reviewing a lot of products for my blog. I don't want to waste anything, so I've decided to put Ipsy on hold for awhile. I've also noticed these posts are the ones that get the least page views on my blog, but I've enjoyed sharing them with y'all anyway. I also recently signed up for the Fab Fit Fun box (get $15 off your box HERE) and I think I may enjoy receiving products each season, versus each month. Plus, it'll be easier to do a review post every season versus every month.

So, let's talk about the September bag!

What is Ipsy?
If you've never heard about Ipsy before, it is a mail subscription that sends you a new makeup pouch each month along with 5 products to sample. And, the kicker? It is ONLY $10 a month! It is also fun to see what others get, because not everyone gets the same products... you fill out a questionnaire and they base your products off of your answers. If you're interested, you can sign up under me, by clicking HERE and I'll earn some points to buy myself extra products. Thanks!

Now, let's review my Ipsy bag!

September Ipsy

Too Faced Lip Injection Extreme
This product was very interesting... I should have read the directions on the box better, because I applied it all over my lips instead of around the perimeter. Ouch! It has a burning/tingling sensation and it DOES plump up your lips. I read the ingredients on the bottle, because I was curious as to WHAT was in it... but, I'm still scratching my head on this one. I don't really need to 'plump' up my lips, but I think it may be a fun product to try every once in awhile. I'm wearing this in the photo above.
I would rate it 3/5 stars.

Rodial Dragon's Blood Hyaluronic Tonic
I was excited to try out this tonic spray. I wish it sprayed on with a finer mist, it was running down my face a bit after I did one spritz. There are better products out there, but I'll use it up. I'll probably use it at night.
I would rate it 3/5 stars.

Eva NYC Forget Me Knot Dry Conditioner
This product was pretty nice for a dry conditioner! I don't use dry shampoo/conditioners very often enough to compare it to anything... but, it seemed to fluff my hair up in the morning and gave it some extra body. I also thought the scent was nice in that you could smell it during application, but not afterwards.
I would rate it 4/5 stars.

tre'StiQue Mini Highlight Stick in Maldives Luminescent
I recently received a highlighter in my Ipsy bag that I haven't had a chance to finish yet, SO I didn't really need a highlighter at this time. I think I like the other one better, too... however, this does glide on great and it looks good with my skin tone. I'm wearing this in the photo above.
I would rate it 3/5 stars.

Be a Bombshell Cosmetics Nail Color in Holy Fuchsia
I'm always excited to receive nail polish in my bags. I am pretty loyal to Essie, but this fall color held up well on my nails for several days without chipping. I'm wearing this in the photo above.
I would rate it 4/5 stars.

And, if we look back from a YEAR ago... this is my September 2015 box and I'm sharing what I used and what I didn't use...

Products from my September 2015 Box I've Kept or Tossed:

I really liked the metallic bag in brown that came this month. My favorite item in the bag was the Formula X nail color in Ignite. It is just such a pretty fall shade and I really like the Formula X polishes. The NYX eyeshadow palette was a nice neutral and I liked that it included a black powder, which I don't already have.

The other three items were OK. The J. Cat Beauty Bronze eye pencil I actually landed up tossing, because it just didn't have enough pigment to show up. :( The Vasanti BrightenUp! exfoliator worked nicely on my face, but it wasn't memorable. The NAOBAY moisturizing cream wasn't memorable either and I used it in the evening to use it up... it didn't include a sunscreen, so I didn't want to wear it during the day.

To see my September 2015 Ipsy review post, click HERE.

Subscribe to Ipsy for only $10 a month!

If you don't already subscribe to Ipsy, click HERE for my referral link. For $10/month it's a fun way to try new products that are delivered right to your mailbox!

What did you get in your Ipsy Glam bag this month?

Monday, September 26, 2016

A New Spin on Creativity with Pottery Cool!

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! It is still pretty warm here, so we've been enjoying some activities outside under our new pergola! Autumn loves anything crafty and hands on and really had a fun time creating animals and even a bowl with her new Pottery Cool set! I encourage the kids to get outside versus playing inside on their electronics. She really enjoyed working on this two evenings outside. One evening she spinned the pottery out on the turntable and then worked on it with the cutter/smoother tools afterwards to finish off her masterpiece. Then we let the pottery pieces dry for a day and the next evening she painted them! So much fun!

First I set up everything under some scrap paper for her on the table outside. You can tell by  her smile in this photo that she can't WAIT to get started!

PotteryCool3 PotteryCool4
The Pottery Cool set came with individually wrapped clay. I had Autumn unwrap a piece of clay and set it on top of the pottery turntable, that lets gravity do the work. She then misted it lightly with water and turned on the wheel. She took her hands and molded the pottery exactly how she wanted it.

Your hands do get a little messy, but Autumn didn't care one bit!

She then took the pottery off the turntable and cut off the excess clay, so that she could use it to make little face parts, such as eyes, nose, etc. for her cat.

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The Pottery Cool set comes with several cutting and smoothing tools to help you mold and shape pieces to add to your clay. You can use the mister to help add a little moisture to them if they get dry.

We let the pottery pieces dry overnight and then the next evening, I set up the table again for Autumn to paint!

There were ten different colors that came with the Pottery Cool set, which gave her a huge variety in how she wanted to paint her pottery. 

PotteryCool11 PotteryCool12
She had a lot of fun painting her cat. She loved the metallic silver color!

Autumn is really into animals and polka dots, hence her creations. However, Pottery Cool can be used to make some other really COOL items, such as iphone (or smartphone) speakers, jewelry holders and so much more!

Autumn's pottery pieces look great! She had so much fun and she wants to spend another afternoon creating some more pottery.

You can also check out these how to videos, for more helpful tips and tricks:
Video 1: Jewelry Holders and More
Video 2: Tips and Tricks
Video 3 - Cool Cell Phone Speaker & More

If you are looking of REAL pottery that your kids can actually do themselves, then be sure to check out Pottery Cool at Walmart!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
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