Book of the Month: Girls in White Dresses Review

Our Overview…

We stumbled upon Girls in White Dresses by Jennifer Close as we were searching through Pinterest, for the perfect novel to dive into.

We were immediately intrigued by the title and we wanted to learn more. The brief description we read was short and simple but it captured our attention. Girls in White Dresses is a novel following three women in their 20’s, struggling in many aspects of their lives while everyone else seemed to have it all together. 

Our Opinions…

Girls in White Dresses was admittedly entertaining. While it was a quick read, it is a story that we instantly connected with. 

We found ourselves identifying with a lot of the characters and their experiences. It was fun to see how some of the characters actually represented a lot of people in our own lives as well. 

We felt that the book accurately defines what it’s like to date as a twenty-something in today’s society. It also accurately describes the struggles of being unmarried while it seems that all of your friends are walking down the aisle. 

Overall, we would recommend this book. We had fun reading it and we hope you enjoy it as well! It would be perfect to bring on your summer vacation! 

Have you read Girls in White Dresses? If so, let us know in the comments what you thought! 

Disclaimer: We are not affiliated with any books that we write about. We are not professional reviewers, we just like to share our favorite places and things with anyone willing to listen. 

Fox in the Snow Cafe

With the heat of the summer upon us…

We are convinced that there is no better way to cool down than to visit Fox in the Snow Cafe. While we have previously visited this quaint coffee house, we thought their delectable pastries and unique (almost conservatory-inspired) aesthetic was worthy of mention.

Upon our arrival at Fox in the Snow Cafe, we were amazed (but not completely surprised) at the abundance of eager coffee enthusiasts trailing from the glass-paneled doors. Our suggestion to combat the craziness? The earlier you venture out for your morning cappuccino, the better!

However, despite the lingering lines, the pastry and alluring latte did not disappoint. Even though Fox in the Snow Cafe is bustling with business, they certain accommodate for it with plenty of additional seating (inside and out). As we sat outside, enjoying the crisp breeze, we couldn’t help, but notice how the cafe invokes a soothing (yet energetic) atmosphere.

If you’re looking for artisan-inspired pastries while strolling around Columbus, we recommend making a quick stop at Fox in the Snow!

Location:

1031 North 4th Street

Columbus, OH 43201

Disclaimer: We are not affiliated with any place that we write about. We are not professional reviewers, we just like to share our favorite places and things with anyone willing to listen. 

          Danielle’s Blueberry Scone & Latte
Lindsay’s Recommendation? The Cinnamon Roll.
Danielle enjoying a blissful moment with her latte.

8 Beauty Products Under $10 (We Can’t Live Without)

We know of the all too familiar struggle.

The moment you wander aimlessly through the beautiful glass doors of Sephora. As you drift by, your eyes catch the beautiful glistening palettes, the vibrant lip stains, and the somewhat costly price tag. However, we have learned over time that our favorite makeup items don’t have be accompanied by an outrageous price tag.

The items below are our personal picks for makeup “must-haves” that won’t break the bank.*

 

Danielle’s “must-haves”

  1. L’Oréal Hydrafresh Toner $7.99 

I didn’t know I needed toner until I tried this one! I use it once in the morning (before makeup application) and once before bed. It keeps my skin hydrated and my complexion brighter!

  1. E.L.F. Illuminating Palette $6.00

I had been searching for an affordable highlighter before finally giving this a try. It has four different color options. I love it, and for the price, you can’t beat it!

  1. Maybelline Instant Anti-Age: The Eye Eraser $7.99

The purpose of this product is to reduce the appearance of dark circles under your eyes and it works great! I tend to use it on blemishes as well. It has definitely become a staple in my beauty routine.

  1. Essie Nail Polish: Fiji $8.99

This color quickly became one of my favorites! It’s vibrant and great for spring. Essie is one of my favorite nail polish brands, in general, because their polish lasts longer than other polishes I’ve tried. Not to mention, they have so many colors to choose from!

Lindsay’s “must-haves”

  1. Neutrogena Shine Control Powder $9.99

I have struggled with having oily skin my whole life. For a long time, I used other powder compacts to treat the problem. When I finally stumbled upon this shine control powder, I was instantly impressed. I love how the translucent powder doesn’t effect my contour and keeps my face oil-free.

2. NYX Micro Brow Pencil $9.99

This brow pencil has greatly simplified my makeup routine. The pencil creates fine lines that keep me from “over-doing” my eyebrows and the attached spoolie corrects any mistakes.

3. E.L.F. Poreless Face Primer $6.00

With the poreless face primer, I quickly learned that a little goes a long way. However, once I adjusted to using this product, I was amazed with how it smoothed the inconsistencies in my skin. By applying the primer before my makeup every day, my skin has been able to keep its fresh appearance all day long.

4. E.L.F Expert Liquid Liner $2.00

Before the E.L.F. liquid liner, I would spend $15-$20 on name brand eyeliner pens (that would quickly dry out after purchase). Discovering this liner has allowed me to save some extra cash while using a quality product!

What are some of your favorite, affordable beauty products? Let us know by commenting below!

* Disclaimer: We are not affiliated with any cosmetic company mentioned in this blog post.

DIY Puppy Birthday Cake Recipe

As the old saying goes, dogs are (wo)man’s best friend.

Our furry, four-legged friends are always a constant source of comfort and support. They serve as our protector, therapist, and life-long companion. Most importantly, they love us unconditionally.

This is our four-legged friend, Dakoda.

Dakoda recently turned 12 years old (a big milestone for him). After much extensive thought, we decided what better way to celebrate his birth than by making Dakoda a puppy cake! We frantically searched Pinterest for the perfect recipe (low-fat, of course). At last, we were inspired by a recipe posted on thelittlesloth.blogspot.com.

Since my baking skills are sub-par, it was questionable as to how this culinary concoction would turn out. Thankfully, the recipe itself was very simplistic and easy to follow (even for the most inept baker).

Here’s what you’ll need:

1/4 cup honey

1 egg

1/4 cup applesauce

1 cup flour

1/2 cup oatmeal

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup peanut butter

The topping consists of peanut butter, Milkbone dog treats, and candles (of course)!

Here’s what you do:

Mix all ingredients together in a medium bowl. Lightly grease a shallow pan or dish (and pour in mixture). Preheat the oven for 350 degrees and bake for 15-20 minutes. Allow the cake to cool, then coat it in a layer of peanut butter and decorate.

And the best part is… Dakoda thoroughly enjoyed the final product!

Give this recipe a try and let us know what you think!

Things to do on Sunday to have a productive week!

Sundays are perfect for getting caught up and preparing for the week ahead. Give this list a try and you’re sure to have a successful week!

  • Start your day with a cup of joe. As far as we’re concerned, there’s no better way to start a productive day. It’s relaxing and energizing at the same time.
  • Go to the grocery store. Make a list of what you need and get this out of the way first thing in the morning. You’ll avoid the stores afternoon rush and you’ll have first pick of fresh produce!
  • Complete the necessary chores. No one wants to spend their day off doing chores but you’ll be glad you did. Throw in a load of laundry, clean up the dishes piled in your sink, and do a quick clean up around the common areas.
  • Prep for the next day. Set out your outfit so you don’t have to spend the next morning rummaging through your closet in a sleepy haze. Pack your lunch so it’s ready to grab on your way out the door.
  • Review your planner. It’s good to know what your week is going to look like ahead of time. It’s also a good time to plan out anything you might want to add or accomplish this week.
  • Relax. Not only should you be physically ready for the week ahead, you should work on being mentally ready. Practice some yoga, take a hot bath, or read a book. Whatever you do, just be sure to take some time out for yourself. The work week doesn’t always allow a lot of time for this serenity, so this one is important!
  • Go to bed early. We know you hear this everywhere but it’s a good tip! Get your sleep and make your Monday a little less of a struggle.

What are some ways you prepare for the work week? Let us know by commenting below!

7 Last Minute Ways to Celebrate Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day is this weekend and if you’re like us, you’re thinking of the best ways to celebrate the woman who gave you life.

One of our favorite ways to celebrate is gift giving! However, it can be a challenging task to find the perfect gift. Below we have gathered a list of gift ideas that’ll be sure to make her feel special!

  1. Flowers: This one is pretty popular and always a great option.
  2. Take her to get pampered: Moms tend to care for everyone else before themselves. Let her relax today by:
  • Taking her to get her hair done.
  • Setting up a nail appointment for her.
  • Scheduling a massage.

3. Homemade Gift: If you’re creative, make something! A few ideas:

  • Scrapbook or picture frame with your favorite memories with her.
  • Homemade Sugar Scrub – check out our homemade sugar scrub post here.
  • Make her favorite baked goods.
  1. Gift card: If your mom is a little challenging to shop for, buy her a gift card to her favorite store.
  2. A basket of goodies: Does your mom love coffee? Buy her a basket with a new mug, her favorite coffee, coffee creamer, and some biscotti. Customize this idea to her interests and it’s sure to be a hit!
  3. Make her dinner: Treat her to her favorite meal. If cooking isn’t your strength, take her out to dinner!
  4. Spend time together: Most of all, spend time with your mom. She is the reason you are here, after all!

Leave a comment below with your favorite ways to spoil your mom on Mother’s Day!

Blank Slate Coffee

There’s nothing better than starting your day with a Blank Slate…

     In this case, we mean a cup of coffee from Blank Slate Coffee. As we have mentioned in previous posts, Columbus has an abundance of unique local coffee shops. The coffee community is so large that we even held a Coffee Fest last year (and it sold out within days of tickets going on sale!). This event showcased dozens of coffee vendors who were excited to share their products and capture local interest.

     One vendor made an impression on us immediately (in the form of a large chrome caffeine fortress with Blank Slate Coffee inscribed on the side). We were easily intrigued by the long line surrounding this establishment and we instantly had to see what all of the hype was about. As we waited (im)patiently for our turn, each coffee enthusiast would walk off of the truck exclaiming that their sip of Blank Slate Coffee was light and refreshing. 

Once it was our turn, we walked into the truck with a few other people. We were quickly greeted and given an explanation of who they were and what they were serving. That’s where we were introduced to the lavender latte (a product unheard by either of us). It was very different from anything we had sampled that morning. Once we tried our sample, we both knew it was our favorite. The flavor was unexpected and delicious. It wasn’t too sweet or too bitter. It was perfection in a paper cup. 

     Once we got home, we couldn’t wait to follow Blank Slate on their social media platforms for their updates. We also found out that their truck isn’t too far from us (score!). They have a main location that they set up their truck but they also travel to different locations and events. We have already made our way over to see them and grab a lavender latte and they never disappoint! If you’re in the Columbus area, be sure to check them out! 

Location:

152 Mill St. Suite 1

Gahanna, Ohio 43230

Disclaimer: We are not affiliated with any place that we write about. We are not professional reviewers, we just like to share our favorite places and things with anyone willing to listen. 

Danielle enjoying her lavender latte!

Enjoying beautiful Creekside!

Book of the Month: Riveting Reader Reviews | February 2017

Book of the Month| February 2017

Girls in White Dresses by Jennifer Close

 

When considering our reading selection for the month of February, Girls in White Dresses certainly seems appropriate for this time of year. Between the dwindling final episodes of The Bachelor and the recent celebration of Valentine’s Day, love and marriage are becoming relevant topics of discussion.

However, our excitement to read this novel doesn’t stem from the mention of these topics. Instead, we are intrigued by the alternate perspective it presents regarding marriage (in a way which is very relatable to many twenty-somethings out there).

A Simple Synopsis:

Girls in White Dresses is primarily about three women, in the height of their adulthood, are surrounded by couples experiencing engagements, marriages, and seem to have a general understanding of life. Conversely, these women struggle to obtain or achieve those glorified aspects of life.

Our Initial Impression:

We are at a point in our lives where it seems everyone is getting married and settling down. Everyone has it all figured out and we just don’t feel like we’re there yet. It’s hard to go a day on social media without an engagement announcement of some sort (we mean no offense to anyone engaged or married…we are truly happy you have found happiness). It makes us wonder, are we behind? Is there something wrong with us because we aren’t running down the aisle? It’s exciting to finally find a novel that seems to understand our struggle. 

Have you read this book? Can you relate to the conversation of this post? Comment below with your thoughts on this topic! 

8 Fun-Filled Ways to Spend Galentine’s Day

Ahhh Galentine’s Day,

One of our favorite holidays to celebrate is finally here! No, not to be mistaken for Valentine’s Day.

One might ask…what is Galentine’s Day exactly? The answer is a day to acknowledge those who stand by your side through thick and thin. Those who strongly support you through the unanticipated struggles of life while simultaneously encouraging you to spend $100 on another pair of shoes you probably don’t need (treat yo self). They are those special people in your life who often don’t get the recognition they deserve.

To celebrate those individuals, here are a couple of our ways we celebrate Galentine’s Day:

  1. Dinner. Go out with your favorites. Get dressed up and make reservations for a nice restaurant. There is a misconception that those fancy dinners are only for couples on February 14th. Break the stigma. Celebrate with dessert and a margarita.
  2.  Host a movie night. Whether it’s Red Box or Netflix, pick a romantic comedy movie that will make you laugh (or, my personal favorite, that will allow you to judge the ridiculousness of its perfect plot line). Don’t forget snacks and wine. Lots of wine.
  3. Get your nails done. While others are splurging on jewelry and flowers, you can splurge on a much needed manicure (which will last longer than those roses, by the way). A mani/pedi session is the perfect way to spend quality time together while getting pampered.
  4. Bake a treat together. Preferably something that contains chocolate. Check out some of these sweet ideas from Pinterest if you are having difficulty coming up with ideas.
  5. Go shopping. As we mentioned before, friends are the best to shop with. Now go out and buy something frivolous!
  6. Tour a chocolate factory. T’is the season to indulge in all the chocolates.
  7. Try a paint night. These events are really popular right now and so much fun! Research places in your community that host these events and get a group of friends to sign up with you. You may find deals on Groupon. Ps. Wine is usually included!!
  8. Celebrate Leslie Knope style! She is the one who created the holiday in the first place. If you’re a fan of Parks and Rec, you will get this reference. Basically, you only have to do two things. Brunch and exchange gifts. (Waffles are a must.)

Do you celebrate Galentine’s Day? Let us know in the comments below if you do and how you and your friends like to celebrate!

 

 

Book of the Month: January 2017 Review

Our Overview…

Mindy Kaling’s Why Not Me? was the perfect, restorative reading selection for the wintry weather of January. Her book’s content can be categorized into two different tones: personal and professional. Her words of wisdom provide an honest interpretation of the inner workings within a 20-something’s brain. You know, articulating all those thoughts that overwhelm our minds, but we are never willing to express:

-The absurd nature of beauty routines

-The costly obligation of weddings

-The ardent desire to establish an authentic identity while obtaining peer approval

Additionally, Mindy provides a glance through the unique lens of a female writer competing for a spot on the Hollywood stage. She openly offers candid commentary on the criticisms she has received throughout her journey, but also acknowledges how she has embraced these aspects to achieve her own personal aspirations.

Our Opinions…

Why Not Me? was the perfect choice to kick off our reading list for 2017. Once we got our hands on this book, we couldn’t put it down. Mindy provides a comical perspective on struggles we can all relate to as well as her glamorous life in the Hollywood spotlight. The best thing about Mindy is that she doesn’t take being famous too seriously. Even though she struggles with normal things like considering a weight loss trick that requires no effort what-so-ever, she is an advocate for a body-positive perspective and she makes a point to not let the media decide what she should look like.

Being big fans of Mindy, we found it exciting to read about each aspect of her life and also get a behind the scenes look at some of her best work. She describes what it was like to work on The Office and how The Mindy Project was created.

While her approach to sharing her life is comedic, her book will leave you feeling inspired and motivated to accomplish your dreams.

If you haven’t read Why Not Me? or her other book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns), you will want to go to your nearest bookstore and get yourself a copy!

 

 

Did you read along with us this month? What did you think of it? Let us know in the comments below!