Self-Care Ideas to Kick off New Year

When is it too late to say ‘Happy New Year’? I heard after January you can no longer say it, but I’m going to do it anyways….Happy New Year everyone! One of many things that 2020 taught me is the importance of self care. It’s like what they say on the airline videos, “put your oxygen mask on first, before helping others.” I found that in all the uncertainty with Covid, work and my sons’ schooling, I was able to better help my family through 2020 when I was taking care of myself. Eating healthy, keeping my routine exercise schedule, working the same hours, etc, kept me feeling as good as I could going through a global pandemic, and in return I was able to be strong and supportive for my family when they needed me the most.

“Self-care” has become such a buzz word these days but it truly is, and always has been, SUPER important! I challenge everyone to take a little bit better care of themselves this year.  Here are a few self-care ideas to help start 2021 out right:

1 – Pick up a new or old hobby. You are currently reading my new hobby! I used to blog a LOT before kids, then life happened, and my blog took a backseat. I didn’t realize how much I missed it as an outlet until recently. So, I rebranded my blog so it aligns with everything that is important to me, and hopefully it will be easier to find the time to write about topics that I’m currently experiencing every day. Other hobbies could include knitting, a dance class, a new sport, and reading more. And as much as you can, immerse yourself in it. Join a Facebook group that focuses on that hobby, start the hobby with a friend, join a book club, sign up for a course, etc.

2 – Take something off your plate…being a full time working mom makes this a no-brainer. Breaking your back cleaning house? Hire a housekeeper every other week. Struggling to find time to cook dinner? Sign up for something like Blue Apron or a food delivery service like Small Potatoes Catering (local Detroiters can check them out!). I found that grocery shopping took 3 hours on the weekend, which was 3 hours I didn’t get to spend with my boys, so I signed up for Instacart (click here to save $10 on your first order) and haven’t looked back (plus so much safer during a pandemic). Kids crazy? Hire a high schooler to be a mother’s helper so you can focus on you for a few hours a week. Get comfortable with asking for help. 

3 – Get healthy. I’m not referring to a short term new years resolution to lose 10 pounds. I’m talking about sustainability. You can set milestone goals along the way (this is what I do) but beyond that you need a plan that you can commit to for years to come. Come up with a nutrition and workout plan that is tailored for you that you can stick to long term. There are so many resources online that are free, or you can pay to work with a trainer or nutritionist to put together a plan. Figure out what kind of exercise or movement fits your lifestyle and make time for it.

4 – Pick one night a week to be your pamper night or “me” night. I know it’s not realistic to get hours to yourself, however, pick one night where you prioritize a bath with a glass of wine or you do a face mask after your kids go to bed. One night a week I try to do an at home facial treatment. A face mask, under eye masks, a clearing mud mask, etc., can be relaxing and help any problems you have with your skin. My skin tends to get really dry so I like to do super moisturizing treatments. I’m a huge Neutrogena fan, and I like their simple Hydro Boost masks you can buy at a drugstore, Amazon or Target. I also recently discovered Lapcos and I’m loving their 24 karat Gold Foil mask (Lapcos has an amazing price point too, and you can buy on Amazon). 

5 – Splurge on something for YOU. Last year, I signed up for laser hair removal and let me tell you, it works. I always wanted to have it done but never believed it truly worked. It took my best friend working at Milan Laser Hair Removal in Ann Arbor to convince me to try it, and I never looked back. I started with my bikini line which included an awful c-section scar, and I saw hair reduction after the first treatment (meaning I had to shave less!). I’ve had about 5 treatments so far and barely need to shave anymore! I was so impressed that I signed up to get my lower legs done. I’ve only had one treatment on my lower legs so far and I can already tell a difference. I haven’t shaved in a week and barely have stubble. It’s so nice to get those minutes back from shaving in the morning!  

I usually make morning appointments and think of the whole process as ‘me time.’ I get a coffee before I drive to the appointment, I get to visit my friend while she works, and have the satisfaction of knowing that I won’t have to shave much longer. 

Milan Laser Hair Removal has a lifetime guarantee, meaning, you get as many treatments as you need for one price (it’s what they refer to as their Unlimited Package). It was a no-brainer for me. If you have a Milan near you (they have over 110 locations!) and want to find out more, you can book a free consultation. And, if you decide to purchase, you can use my custom discount code ‘Angela60’ for 60% off a body area! Please email me or comment below if you have any questions regarding laser hair removal!

I’d love to hear any other self-care suggestions you may have! What are you doing to take care of and pamper yourself this new year?

*Disclosure: I am a Milan Laser Hair Removal partner – all opinions are my own

Galentine’s Day Gift Ideas

Happy Valentine’s Day (a little early!). My husband and I really don’t do anything crazy for Valentine’s Day – I just get small gifts for the boys. However, this year I wanted to put some cute gift bags together for my girlfriends, moms and aunt. I went with makeup bags (because I fully believe you can never have too many pouches and bags), pens and Dove chocolate hearts. Here are a few ideas that you can still get from Amazon in time:

Cute Valentine’s Day cards
Girly makeup bag or purse pouch.
Can’t go wrong with chocolate!
Fun pens
Pink gift bags are a nice touch 🙂
Self care facial masks
Pink nail polish!

I’d love to hear other Galentine’s Day gift ideas you have in the comments below! Happy Valentine’s Day week!

Olive & June Nail Polish Review

I’m going on a year without gel nail polish, and my nails are thanking me. They are much stronger than when I was getting gel manicures every other week. Even if I took the gel off the correct way, my nails were still so thin. Since I’m not traveling to see clients I figured I’d save money, and my nails, and try to master the at home manicure.

I’ve been using the Olive & June Mani System to work on my at home manicure skills and I love how easy they make it. The kit has all the tools you need for an at home manicure that looks like you came from the salon. Here’s what it includes:

  1. Clippers & File – Clip first, file second. Or don’t clip at all. Either way, both are included for your preference.
  2. Nail buffer – I use to skip this step and would always wonder my nail polish didn’t lay smoothly.
  3. The Poppy – a patented polish bottle handle to paint both hands perfectly. I had my doubts. How can this rubber thing help you paint your nails? It does! Especially for your non-dominant hand! Olive & June nail polish bottle caps slide off so you can slide the Poppy on. Since its larger than a nail polish brush it’s easier to hold and control.
  4. Nail polish – the basic kit comes with one color bottle of no chip paint, and the larger box comes with 6. You get to choose! Or, you can purchase the seasonal box that has the polishes pre-selected. I received this box and LOVED all of the Winter colors.
  5. Super glossy top coat – essential, and gives your manicure a beautiful shine and longer wear
  6. Polish remover pot – No cotton balls needed. Just stick your finger in and twist!
  7. Clean up brush – I LOVE this mini brush. After I’m done painting I stick it in the polish remover pot and clean up my edges to give me a flawless manicure.
  8. Cuticle serum – Last step, moisturize!

Being a busy mom, I look for long wear with my nail polish, and of course, pretty colors. Olive & June covers both of these. I love that I’m giving my nails a healthy break from gel. I just told my best friend the other day that I also love changing my nail color more often vs. having the same color on for 2 weeks. I can also tell a clear difference on how this polishes applies vs. drugstore brands. The wider brush, the Poppy and clean up brush make it SO EASY to get a salon-like polish. I’m so impressed with how my polish skills are coming along!

My manicures have been lasting anywhere from 3-5 days with minimal wear, and I am HARD on my nails. I’m constantly washing dishes, cooking, using cleaners, etc. I usually paint them Sunday nights to start the week and then Thursday/Friday for a weekend color change. Busy mom hack: if they chip mid-week, I usually touch up with same nail color polish or add a glitter coat. Olive & June polish is also so easy to remove. It’s a nice change from peeling layers of nail off with gel or soaking them in acetone.

Olive & June offers all of their nail polishes separately, as well as everything in their nail kits and nail art. They also have a membership option. For $30 a year you will get free shipping on every order, 10% off everything and some special surprises. I’ve got my eye on all of their Spring 2020 polishes.

Have you tried Olive & June yet? If so, let me know your thoughts in the comments. I highly recommend their manicure kit and nail polishes!

Easy DIY Christmas Card Display

I’m not a crafty DIY mom, however, I DID come up with a fun way to display our Christmas cards that I’m excited about. This was such an easy project! I ran to Michaels and purchased ‘burlap’ ribbon and turned our barn yard sliding door into a giant present. I already had cute mini clothespins from a different project, so I reused them to display our Christmas cards as they come in the mail. I’m so excited at how this came out! If you don’t have a sliding door this can be done to a kitchen cabinet, pantry door, basement door, etc.

Items used to create this:

I’d love to hear of other crafty or unique ways you are displaying your Christmas cards in the comments below!

Taylor Winterfest: Blizzard of Oz

Being from downriver, and having my parents still live there, I was overjoyed when I saw a local holiday event we could do together outside. Winterfest: Blizzard of Oz is a walk through winter wonderland of interactive light shows, holiday displays and characters throughout Heritage Park in Taylor, MI.

I love how they spaced everything out. When you buy tickets you sign up for a specific time to arrive. Once you walk all the way through you can no re-enter which keeps the crowds down. The longest we waited for anything was for Santa (the best part!) and it was only about 5 minutes. I felt extremely safe (in regards to Covid) at this event. We took our time walking through and it took us around an hour and 15 minutes to get through.

Having my boys see Santa was my favorite part. The sat on a bench in front of Santa and Mrs. Claus (both wearing masks) and we could take a picture with our own phones. Afterwards they passed out candy to each kiddo via a ‘candy slide.’ The characters were also very fun and engaging. Alvin and the Chipmunks were so cute and made a point to interact with all the kids (and dogs!) passing through. They also had the barn open so you could walk through and see all of the animals (but could not pet them).

There’s a food truck at the entrance (outside of the event) selling fries and corn dogs. Inside they sell hot chocolate, adult beverages, cookies and popcorn. There is also a mini souvenir shop selling beanie baby stuffed animals towards the end. There are tons of great photo opportunities so make sure to bring your nice camera if you have one.

Winterfest runs through January 10, 2021. Each week there is a different theme. You can purchase tickets here. If you go let me know how you liked it in the comments below!

OPI Sheer Tint in Be Magentale with Me

This is hands down one of my best DIY at home manicures. This was right after my first son, Maximus, was born. I miss my postpartum nails!

I’m always keeping my eyes open for pretty, light nail polish shades for every day wear for work. I spotted the new OPI Sheer Tints Top Coats and had to buy the pinkish-red Be Magentale with Me shade. In the bottle, it reminded me so much of a fun nail polish I had when I was younger.

I LOVE this polish as a quick go-to polish that will go with every outfit. I’ve seen other bloggers put 3-4 coats on it to make it more opaque, but I like the sheer look with my white tips coming through (this is right after I had my son, and the prenatal vitamins were still working overtime…such long nails!). Pictured is just two coats over my natural nail. It’s such a elegant, clean look. I use this polish all the time! 

What do you think? Do you like the look of this sheer polish? Or would you be more likely to wear it over a color coat?

I can’t find this color in store or online any longer, but here’s a close duplicate I found. I’d love to hear other recommendations for a sheer nail – drop them in the comments below!

Magic of Lights at DTE Energy Theatre

Friday night we did a ‘mystery trip’ post nap to see the Magic of Lights at DTE Energy Theatre. The Magic of Lights is a 1.5 mile drive through holiday lights display featuring different holiday themed light displays using the latest LED technology and digital animations. This is an ideal quarantine-friendly holiday activity that is great for all ages. Pack some snacks, grab your Christmas 3D glasses and make a night of it.

The boys had fun yelling out all of the different displays. Dragons, dancing kids, Santa playing basketball, construction site, etc. There’s something for everyone. We got there around 7pm and it took is about 30 minutes from start to finish. Everyone goes really slow and halfway through there is a turnoff if you need to use the bathroom. There’s also a pull over spot towards the end where you can buckle your kids back in (if you decide to unbuckle for the show).

Magic of Lights started November 13th and will run until January 2, 2021.

Hours as follows:

  • Sunday – Thursday: 5pm – 10pm
  • Friday – Saturday: 5pm – 11pm

Ticket info

  • Weekday Pass: Valid for One Weekday Use on Any Monday – Thursday. Excludes Holidays (Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve)
  • Any Day Pass: Valid for One Use on Any Day, Including Holidays (Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day)
  • Bus Pass: Valid for One Use on Any Day, Including Holidays (Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day)

Vehicle Descriptions:

  • Standard Vehicle: 3 Rows of Seating or Less
  • Limo/Party Bus: 3+ Rows of Seating or Maximum of 20 Passengers
  • Bus: Any Vehicle of 20+ Passengers

Location
DTE Energy Music Theatre
33 Bob Seger Dr., Clarkston, MI 48348

Get tickets here: 313pres.co/38bGGdW 

Giveaway – Zoya Natural 4 nail polish set

During quarantine I’ve mastered the DIY at home manicure. I use to get my nails done every other week at work (spoiled alert: we have a nail tech at the office) because I was constantly traveling to see clients (or at least, that’s how I justified it). Now that I’m home working out of my pantry (yes, you read that correctly) I have been spending time taking care of my nails myself, and they have been looking extremely healthy if I do say so myself!

I’m currently crushing on the new Zoya line, Natural 4. One of my favorite times of year is the transition from Winter to Spring….dresses + jean jackets, open toe shoes and more daylight . There are 6 new colors:

Evelyn – soft cool toned blush pink cream

Cami – pale mauve taupe cream

Barrett – taupe-violet cream

Vivian – dusty grape cream

Adeline – Deep fig taupe cream. I especially love this color because this is mom’s name!

Marlowe – duo-chrome with a rose-gold shimmer and slate blue base. This can be worn alone or as a topper over your favorite shades for added sparkle.

I’m teaming up with Zoya to giveaway the full new set, all 6 polishes from the Natural 4 line. Giveaway ends December 3rd at midnight. Must be 18+ and located in the US to enter. There are multiple different ways to enter – good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rose-Colored Outerwear Accessories by Lauren Conrad

I’ve been shopping more and more at Kohl’s lately. I’ve been loving Lauren Conrad’s line and most recently all of the rose colored outerwear accessories. These would go great with gray or black coats. I sent three items in this round up to my mom as part of my wish list. Can you guess which ones?

Kohl’s has pulled their Black Friday deals forward so don’t wait to shop. Free Shipping with $75+ purchase, Fast + free store pick up, and extra 15% off using the word ‘THANKS.’ Be sure to share what you purchase in the comments below. Happy Shopping!

Gift Ideas for a Tech Loving Momma

I love giving gifts that the recipient would not have bought themselves…it’s that ‘thing’ that they didn’t know they wanted until it was given to them, and then they wonder how they lived without it. This is one of my favorite things about the holiday.

1 – The Nixplay Digital Photo Frame is an AMAZING gift for family that lives far away. We got one for my mom last Christmas and she loves when I surprise her with new pictures. You sync the Nixplay app on your phone to the picture frame, and you send pictures directly to the frame from anywhere. I love

2 – The Tile Mate is the perfect gift for someone who always loses stuff. It helps you keep track of keys, backpacks and other important items. Missing something? Just open up your Tile app and tap Find to locate your belongings. This may be the gift that keeps on giving!

3 – The Google Home Mini is the perfect little assistant. I love the sleek look – it will blend in with any type of decor or area you use it in. Even if someone has a larger Google Home, it’s a nice addition to put in a smaller room.

4 – I didn’t realize I wanted Bluetooth headphones until I got a pair. These are a great gift for someone working from home or likes working out with music. They have fun carry cases you can get to go with them too.

5 – Fitbit watches have come such a long way! They can be super cute and trendy. This is a great gift for a momma that likes to work out and stay active.

6 – Pura Smart Device air fresheners are for the ultimate tech lover! You can control the amount of scent released in your house from an app. You can set a schedule and control when it turns on and off and the intensity. They have over 50+ different scents available. You can purchase them separately or save 15% and sign up for a subscription. The device is also a nightlight as well. Use code ‘ANGELASHERMAN’ to get 15% off!

7 – Mark & Graham have the cutest personalized travel accessories. These Charging Bracelets are so cool – super fashionable bangle that turns into a phone charger. They come in small and medium and 4 different finishes. They are having an early Black Friday special and are on sale right now!

I would love to hear what other’s are gifting fellow tech lovers – drop me a line in the comments and let me know!