Saturday, April 25, 2015

Perfectly Posh Review

samples are the best! (each sample is directly linked to the product page, just click on the name)

Umm I am in love and as much as it is a good thing, it is also a bad thing! I love Perfectly Posh. Let me start by saying, my friend Stefanie Shuey, (click here for her facebook page and click on her name for her business page) became an consultant and I wanted to try some samples before I placed an order. Well, a couple days later, I got the samples in the mail. I was beyond excited, first my mailbox smelled so fantastic. (It has been a week since I received my samples and my mailbox still smells amazing). Literally, I was sniffing my mailbox. My neighbors think I am crazy, I am for sure of it, you should have seen the looks they were giving me. :)

I thought to myself if the products work as good as they smell then I am in love already. Learning to love my body was and is an ongoing struggle for me, I was always very active when I was younger, soccer, swimming, dancing, cheer leading, etc. As many moms know, being active when we have a family to take care of is a lot more challenging. I'm not saying it cannot be done, it's just harder. When I come across a product that is not only made from natural ingredients but works the way I would like it to and helps me feel good about myself well then it is a no brainier! 

My samples, aren't they just too cute!


More samples and Stef's business card

the catalog was tabbed for easy reference to each item in the sample! She has thought of everything. 

Perfectly Posh is a product line that is designed to pamper and nothing else, the products are all natural, gentle on the skin and body, made in the USA, not animal tested, have essential oils, natural butters, no parabens, sulfates, lanolin or fillers, vegan options and all of their products are under $25! I was sold before I even tried a product. 

I started with the hand cream, Hottie Patottie.
photo credit: perfectlyposh.com


There are just no words. This is happiness in a bottle. I cannot stand hand cream that is so greasy it just wipes right off your hand. This is far from that! Hottie Patottie hydrates as soon as you put it on and rub! I could feel my hands not only becoming softer but overall feeling fantastic. The cream has a vanilla fragrance, just enough to give you a wonderful smell but nothing over whelming. I found myself sniffing my hands throughout the day. The best part about this cream was I only had to use it once to feel a difference, I didn't have to apply it five and six times a day to keep my hands hydrated. The price cannot be beat either $9.00 for a 3oz tube. 

The product I used was the Skindelicious Castaway Coconut Body Butter


photo credit: perfectly posh
At first I was a little hesitant about the coconut smell. I love coconut but if the smell isn't right you end up smelling like a cheap bottle of sunscreen; without hesitant I admit I was wrong. The body butter is fabulous with a capital B! I used it right after a shower and my skin has never felt so good. So silky and smooth, I could feel my shirts and capris, gliding over my skin. The only downfall was the sample was so small, I instantly wanted more. For $22, you get 8oz. You could use this head to toe! 

Up Next in the sample pack, Chunk Big Bath Bar soap, Gender Bender
photo credit: perfectly posh.com



Don't let the name fool you this charcoal based soap bar is a new favorite in our house. Usually I do not like bar soap, it gets yucky (I know official term!) and grimy. This bar of soap did not. As you can see in the sample pack it is a smaller bar, this sample bar lasted through 31 showers. Peanut is now 9 years old, actually he is almost 10, (let's not get started on that!) and well puberty is right around the corner. I was very happy to try to bar soap to be able to write about it but I was more excited about having him try it. I love the clean smell of the soap and I like that it doesn't have an overly feminine scent. This is a bar of soap everyone in your family can use. Peanut loved it as he said it took all my smell away. (IT did!) I also love how the scent didn't mix with our deodorant and just smell funky (please tell me I am not the only person that has happened to?)  Pumpkin has extremely sensitive skin and she was able to use this soap, with no problems. I am patiently awaiting our new bar to arrive! For $9.00 you get 7 oz of this amazing soap! This also happens to be one of the best sellers. 

If you aren't hooked on these products just from the description of how many amazing natural products, then the names will get you! BFF (Best Face Forever) Exfoliating Face Wash,  I mean seriously, how can you not love the product names! 


photo credit: perfectly posh.com

The face wash have microbeads in it, they are like thousands of tiny fingers giving you a face massages. The wash has a grapefruit and peppermint scent, it helps wake you up when you are washing your face. Good morning! I loved how smooth my face felt when I was finished. For $20, you get 4oz. I was able to wash my face twice with the sample that I received, so I know this face wash goes far. 

This is by far my favorite product I tried. You are always hearing the wonders of coconut oil, I have a jar that I keep in my fridge. I use it for everything from cleaning to health care. Posh Life Coconut Oil is fabulous and my new best friend! 

photo credit: perfectlyposh.com

My Sample was just not big enough, I wanted to cry when we were out.It just wasn't big enough. I use coconut oil to help hydrate bug bites and my cuticles. I also use it for hair treatments.  This coconut oil has a wonderful sweet yet not overbearing smell. If you took berries and added a hint of lemon, you have something similar. I used the oil to hydrate my cuticles before pushing them back, it worked fabulously. My cuticle were soft for days. I also have this little patch of skin where I hold a pen that is always so dry, this oil hydrated it perfectly. I love the way my cuticles look! My other favorite use for coconut oil for the ends of my hair, it helps to prevent split ends. I totally used the lemonberry coconut oil and not only did it work wonderfully but I got a subtle hint of lemonberry every time I moved my head. It reminded me of summertime! For $15, you get 4 oz, if you only buy one product make it this one. You won't be sorry!


I'm almost getting sad that I am at the last product to share with you as I have not only enjoyed writing about Perfectly Posh but I just love sharing them.  Last up in the sample pack, Sugar Fix Classic Body Sugar Scrub.  


Do not try this scrub if you are hungry, alright I am just kidding but it really is amazing. The scrub is gentle enough not to hurt your skin but gives your the exfoliation you are looking for. Not only does it smell amazing, a sweet floral smell with a hint of almond. (My kids thought I was making cookies when I used it) but your skin feels pampered. For $22, you get 9oz. Another steal if you ask me.

Perfectly Posh is my new favorite line. I adore their products, I love the vintage vibe they have, even the catalog has that same vibe.  Check out this photo from their website:
Not only have they thought of how to pamper you but Perfectly Posh pampers the earth, This card is included in their shipping boxes to describe their packing peanuts.


Get in touch with Stefanie and let her pamper you or even better host a party! You will be hooked. 

Friday, April 24, 2015

My First Years Review




Let's imagine you are looking for a wonderful gift for a new baby or a young child in your life. What do you look for first? Me, personally I want something that is of good quality and something that is useful. Or I should probably say going to be playful. Having three kiddos in my house, I know how easily the toys and well let's face it junk piles up.  

I refuse to be part of the problem, if you ever invite me to a party where I need to purchase a gift let it be known I am bringing something useful or fun (chances are it isn't making any noise either (just saying)). With that being said, I was asked to review any item by the My 1st Years company and I instantly fell in love with their products. Take a look around their website and you will as well. 

I was allowed to pick any item up to $30.00 for my review. I was so excited, it took me forever to decide what I wanted. They have everything: robes, clothes, toy bins, frames, books and more. 

While trying to decide I wanted something that I could use with the children and all of them not just one. I also wanted something that would be amazing! The item also had to be something that I could easily pass on to other children I know when my children out grew it. It was a tall order, but that's how I roll!

 I chose the Personalized Chef set (apron, chef hat, oven mitt, rolling pin and cookie cutter set) as my children are always asking to help in the kitchen. I couldn't ask for a better product for them and our lifestyle. I was also hoping that this set could be used in the kitchen with me and with their play kitchen. 

I was very impressed with how the box arrived. It reminded me of a Tiffany box, the blueish color and white ribbon, classy all the way! We now use the box for their treasures (my version of treasure is a little different than theirs, but that's ok). 


Can you imagine opening a gift like this? or even just something that you ordered? Love it! 

pardon the marker, Bean thought the box was his! Silly toddlers!

I was concerned with the quality of the apron when I ordered it, you never know what you will get when you order online. I was pleasantly surprised. The apron chef hat, oven, cookie cutters and rolling pin were fantastic! The apron is light weight and hangs nicely on the children. The font was a perfect shade of blue to contrast but not be overbearing. When you are purchasing the set, you have the availability to choose the font color, Royal blue, Fuchsia Pink and Silver. There is also a pink apron set. The chef hat is adjustable with Velcro which was very helpful as Bean and Pumpkin are very different in size. 

I wish I could tell you how happy my children were to wear the apron and be "Mama's little Chef."  They were the coolest people they know,  the best part about this apron, is they now have another element to their dramatic play area of room. Love watching them use their imagination. 

inside the box- this is great gift 

In my house there is a fight to see who can help me with the meals, and now it is a fight to wear the apron! Can't win them all can you? 

After wearing the apron and the oven mitt, while cooking for real (as my kiddos) call it, I washed the apron. You cannot even tell that it has been washed. It came out of the washer and dryer just like it had arrived to us! 



gotta love the spark in the background!

in his kitchen (I think he has taken over his sister's play kitchen)

as you can see they are very different in size and easily able to share the apron!

I highly recommend you not only check out My 1st years but feel confident buying one of their many beautiful items. If you are looking for a wonderful gift for someone or for yourself, this is your one stop shop! 




Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Travel Tuesday: Moss Glen Falls Trail: Stowe, VT

As we have been touring the state of Vermont and fun places to visit, I've been waiting to share this place with you. A little while back I shared with you Moss Glen Falls right outside of Granville. Today, I want to take you to Moss Glen Falls and trail in Stowe. I have to say this is one of my favorite places to take my kiddos. We love hiking and having all of the children on different ability levels makes it very hard to all enjoy a place without there being some struggles. This is a place where we can all go and love every minute of it.

Getting to the waterfall is relatively easy, traveling on Route 100 from Stowe Village, make a right onto Randolph Road and then another quick right onto Moss Glen Falls Road. As you drive on Moss Glen Falls Road you will come to a bend in the road with a very obvious parking lot for the falls. The trail is pretty easy, often walking on wooden boards or a decent size path.
Sign in the parking lot beginning of the trail

The falls themselves are beautiful, the hike is a pretty decent one with points to where you can hope in the Moss Glenn Brook and enjoy the water. Depending on the time of year you visit and also the water flow. If you choose you can hike to the top of the hill directly across from the waterfall. You will have an amazing view of the top part of the waterfall but the bottom will not be visible.
 
warning sign as you reach the top of the hike (the hike is about 1/2 a mile)

 
viewing the top part of the waterfall (I made them sit, after all there is a cliff right there)

 The falls themselves are 125 feet tall,making it the largest cascade in Vermont; as you see the falls you will see that they are broken up into smaller waterfalls. I love the hike to the top for exercise and to enjoy a hike. If you want a wonderful view of the falls then you need to hike halfway up the beaten path and then hop in the water. 
 
half of the waterfall (after a rain so it has heavy water flow)


taken from the top of the hike (this is standing on the edge of the cliff)
looking down at the brook from halfway up the hike

Falls from the top of the hike (as you can see, the bottom portion is not visible)    


When you hike in the brook, you come across what I like to call tide pools, I know that isn't the technical name but it was the best way to describe them. You can swim at the bottom of the brook, the water is clear and you can sit and relax or swim. Can you guess which one my children chose? 

To get to the tide pools you have to walk up the brook, this runs parallel to the path/hike. Again depending on the rainfall and how fast the brook is moving, the hike is easier or more difficult. 
the hike turning point, you either walk five more feet and down a small grade to get into the brook or continue walking up the hill through the trees to get to the top.

If you choose to walk the brook, which is our favorite part to do, I highly recommend you have water shoes. The rocks are very wet and slippery (for all my Pittsburgh readers: slippy). 

You will walk along the brook and there is a huge rock, this is the mile marker or the gentle giant, at this point you will be at the tide pools. 

walking the brook, this was a higher water day

getting read to climb on the gentle giant (the turning point of the brook)

We did it! Now to slide down (gently of course) and go into the tide pools.
The nice things about this hike, is there are few different entrances to the water. This particular day we chose to walk up the brook and collect pretty stones, and leaves as we walked. You can also take the path to the tide pools (if it has rained recently this path become a mud pit and very hard to get into the brook safely). 

The tide pools are fun to swim in and many people actually have picnics right along the brook. 

in the tide pools (the gentle giant is right out of view to the right)
This was a higher water day, it came up to Pumpkin's chest. Other times that we have visited it was ankle depth. I love coming here as the kiddos are able to climb, explore, swim and skip rocks. I can put myself in a central location and be within arms distance of all of them. It's a win-win. 

bottom part of the falls from the giant rock


 Sometimes the waterfall is too strong to climb (like in the picture above), this was a good day for swimming but not for hiking. The water coming down is moving very fast and there is a bed of rocks that is extremely hard to navigate with strong water current. 

close up of the falls at the bottom (notice the water isn't as strong) 






On days when the water isn't as strong you are able to climb the actual falls and look at the waterfall from the top. This is a very popular hike in the spring and summer for this reason. Vermont does not have a lot of public swimming pools and to be honest most of them are very expensive. Some of the resorts open their indoor pools and offer lessons but most of the Vermonters just hike and swim in nature's swimming pools. 

the cliffs you stand if you hike to the top of the waterfall (picture taken from the bottom of the falls)

3/4 of the way down the falls on a low water flow day.
There is nothing better than getting outdoors and exploring. I always find that I have less behavior problems when we get out into nature. Studies have shown that people that are in nature 20 minutes a day, have less stress, more life expectancy and overall general health. I say, you cannot beat that.

bottom of the falls standing in one of the tide pool looking at the watefall

peanut climbed the bottom half of the waterfall
If it is a hot summer day and you are looking to swim, or want a wonderful hike in the fall, you need to get to Moss Glen Falls Trail in Stowe. After you are done hiking you can go into the village and get some fabulous food!

You don't see things like this when you sit at home on the couch! Travel the world, one place at a time.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Hand print Vase



My newest obsession is mason jars. I love the way they look on a shelf, I cannot get enough of how many uses they have. Just love love love them. Each year for Mother's Day, I am in a position where I am making some gift for mothers that I know. Last year it was for the mothers in my infant room. Now, the babies I was working with were all under the age of one, which meant my co-teacher and I were doing the majority of the work. We had a blast making them honestly.

I wanted something that inexpensive to make but would have a wonderful impact. I knew it had to include my favorite hand print or footprints. Just love the way they look! Then it hit me, make a vase. Ok, now what to make it out of? I didn't want to make something that couldn't be used but one time a year or would just sit on the shelf. 

Enter Pinterest, so much inspiration but still nothing was really clicking. Then, I remembered flowers that never wilt. Slowly all the pieces were coming together. I needed to get some information from the mom's and my vision was forming. 

Mason jars, hand prints, favorite color and my favorite black and white pictures! YES, the perfect mother's day gifts. Well let's be honest, most moms love anything their babies make them but that is besides the point!




Let me tell you I just adore the way these turned out. Let's start at the top and work our way down. The flowers are each child's hand prints curled around a pipe cleaner. The idea is that they are flowers that will never wilt, like a mother's love for her child. I am all about symbolism! 

On the front is a close up black and white picture of the child. I love black and white, because it comes down to the simple emotion of the photograph. Just pure beauty. 

The back of the jar has the child's foot print stamped in their mom's favorite color. I must say I was pretty proud of myself.

Inside the jar, we enclosed a mother poem, that I had designed a few years ago. 

Total cost of the project: $2.00 per jar. That's not bad if you ask me, the two photos and the paint is where the majority of the money went. I was able to get the jars donated. 

How to: Start with clean jar, remove the lid. Figure out the size opening you want, I made mine 2.5" by 2.5". I wanted a smaller size so the photograph didn't curl around the side of the jar. Tape off the size you want using painters tape.


getting ready for paint
Using glass paint, paint two to three thin coats on the jar. Making the coats thin, will help to make sure the paint is even. 


paint that we used

drying in the window

after removing the tape

After three coats of paint, we printed a picture and placed it in the opening. We taped the photo on the inside this gave us more room to secure it. This was the most difficult part as we had to have the perfect picture to look great not only in black and white but in this tiny opening. 


slowly adding the pictures one by one

as we added the footprints we turned them around to make sure we had all of the elements

The next part of the vases was to add the footprint. We did this using each one of the mom's favorite colors. It gave it just that extra touch! To do the footprints, we painted the bottom of the infant's foot and slowly rolled their foot onto the jar. This helped to avoid smearing and to get a crisper print.

After all the prints were done, we sealed the jars with acrylic sealer. The glass paint has an element of sealer in it but the paint that we used for their foot prints were just regular craft paint. 

We traced each one of their hands and created a stencil to cut the rest of the hand prints out of construction paper. I usually use white paper to make the hand prints look like lilies but we thought that was too much white with the jars. I love the way the colored flowers turned out. We placed a  cup in the inside so the jar could be used as a vase, we also gave them the lid in case they wanted to close it off. I was thinking like a time capsule or something, wouldn't it be cute with cute little decorative bags with their first tooth, first lock of hair on the inside. 

Here's another shot of the finished product. Aren't they just the cutest? 


This is how we presented them to the moms!


How could you not smile when you walked in to pick your child up? Happy Mother's Day!



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