Wednesday, March 8, 2017

February Favourites

I am back today with my monthly favourites. In this post I share about the favourite things during the month of February - makeup and skincare, of course, but I also included some lifestyle favourites to keep it interesting. Enjoy!


Makeup
I have been in a bit of a rut with makeup, because it took me forever to unpack my collection from the move (we've been here for three months!). I was just living out of my travel makeup bag. I really like all the things I selected to keep in there, but I also really appreciate variety, so I was getting a little stuck. I bought a few new Arbonne items, and this contour palette was a Secret Santa/gift exchange gift from my Mother-in-Law.

Products: (clockwise from top left) Arbonne It's a Long Story Mascara, NYX Contour Palette, Maybelline Fit Me Set + Smooth Powder in 315 Soft Honey, NYX Ombre Blush in Mauve Me, Arbonne Makeup PrimerSephora Collection Pro Angled Blush Brush #49, The Balm Cosmetics May Lou Manizer.


Skincare
I was super happy to get my Arbonne order in February and the serum and the night cream have been daily staples for me. The Pixi Glow Tonic has been my toner of choice both morning and night, and I repurchased the It's Potent Eye cream because it is just that amazing. Note: for the Glow Tonic, I linked directly to the Pixi UK website. Amazon.ca had crazy prices for it. So far, in Saskatchewan, I have only seen Pixi at Shoppers Drug Mart, and it was very recent.

Products: (left to right) Benefit Cosmetics It's Potent! Eye Cream, Arbonne FC5 Moisturizing Night Crème, Pixi Glow Tonic.



Lifestyle
Daniel and I have played a lot of Bohnanza in the last few months. We highly recommend it! Daniel's sister and brother-in-law were the first to introduce it to us, I think they've had it for around a year? We played it a lot at family get togethers and we enjoyed it so much that we decided it would be good to have on hand to play with friends too.

I have been reading quite a bit, since reading more is a goal of mine. I'll update you on the books that I have been reading soon, but Bringing Up Bébé was definitely a favourite. I'm not quite done, but it has already taken a place in my favourites. We don't have any children, and don't really plan on it for awhile, but I like learning about everything, and this book came highly recommended. Since it was available at our local library, I decided to give it a read.

Products: Bohnanza card game, Bringing Up Bébé book (updated version linked).

What are some of your favourites from February?

Monday, March 6, 2017

Diffusing Lately - Honeymoon Wellness


I have shared a couple posts involving essential oils, but, for the amount that I actually use them in my day-to-day life, I haven't shared much about them here on the blog. I decided I wanted to share different essential oil diffuser blends here each month. I always like learning about the blends other people come up with, so I thought I would add my ideas to the mix!

The first blend in this series is what I diffused in our hotel room for the entire duration of our honeymoon back in December. We went to Quebec City and, after the pre-wedding adrenaline rush, any sickness that had been trying to bring us down finally got to us. When we arrived in Quebec City we were both exhausted and feeling a little off. We didn't end up getting sick for real, and I like to think this diffuser blend helped us kick it before it started.

I am all for diffusing based on the benefits of the oils, but this blend surprised me with how amazing it smelled!

Please note: I recommend one drop of each of these oils. Do not use too much of any essential oil - less is definitely more when it comes to essential oils and safely using them! If you have any questions regarding essential oil safety, feel free to get in touch and I can either help answer your question or direct you to the information.

Frankincense
I added Frankincense for its all-around wellness properties. The King of All Oils, as it is often referred to, is a good oil to grab when you don't really know which oil would be best. Frankincense is something I always add to my blends for promoting feelings of wellness.

Lavender
I first diffused this blend when we were heading to bed after arriving very late at night, so I added in some Lavender to help promote feelings of relaxation. I ended up keeping it in the blend for the whole week, even when we were in the hotel room during the day; because the scent was so awesome, I didn't want to cut anything out. And, it's ok to promote relaxation at all times of the day on your honeymoon :).

OnGuard Blend
OnGuard is the go-to blend for cleansing the air and promoting immune support. It is a blend of Clove, Wild Orange, Cinnamon Bark, Eucalyptus, and Rosemary. While you could concoct this yourself, it wouldn't be at the same ratio, and I only use a drop or two of this at a time (you can't really get a quarter of a drop of oil like you would need if making it from the single oils themselves).

Citrus Bliss Blend
Citrus Bliss is, by far, my favourite essential oil blend offered by dōTERRA. The scent is amazing and I cannot get enough. Citrus oils are uplifting, soothing, and they just add a nice scent to everything. You could easily swap in some Wild Orange, Tangerine, or Lemon and the blend would still be quite similar, although I highly recommend getting Citrus Bliss - it is my favourite for laundry and cleaning, too.

Now I want to hear from you! What is your current favourite essential oil diffuser blend? Have you tried something similar to this? When you do give it a try, come back here and let me know what you think!

Disclosure: This website is not authored or directly affiliated with dōTERRA or any of it's affiliated companies. I am a Wellness Advocate with dōTERRA, and the links above are to my personal page where you can purchase through me. You can browse all products available here. If you are interested in your own wholesale account, please email me at sarah.sweetspontaneity@gmail.com. 

Friday, March 3, 2017

March 2017 Goals



I recently shared my plans for Lent, which are essentially goals, but I also have a few other things that I want to focus on for the month of March.

Investing in Friendships
This involves both really investing in my active friendships as well as reaching out to people that I have lost touch with. I don’t mean my friend from seventh grade that I haven’t heard from since the summer before grade eight, but those friends that we only recently lost touch because of conflicting schedules and such. I have really been craving connecting through genuine friendships lately, so this is a priority for me.


Blog Regularly
I really enjoy blogging, but if you look back on my history for the last little quite a while, it really doesn’t show. I haven’t made a priority of this blog, but I want to. So, the first step that I have determined is posting regularly. Hopefully I will create a good habit and I can build from there.

What are your goals for March?

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Lent 2017


I have spent quite a bit of time preparing for Lent this year, which has made me really excited for it. Lent is a time to prepare for the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ. It is a time when people frequently “give up” something for the duration of the 40 days of Lent. I think it is really important to observe some sort of fasting, but this is also a time that we can focus on “taking up” something. Both are ways of being intentional about deepening our relationship with Christ, and together they help to achieve balance.

This Lent, I have a lot of things that I am planning on doing. I’m worried I might be overly ambitious, but I plan on giving it my best shot.

Ok, so here is my plan!

Blessed is She Lenten Journal
Blessed is She is a Catholic website for women that shares daily devotions and blog posts, and they help to foster Catholic community by hosting retreats, helping to organize local brunches, and by being a place for Catholic women to connect with each other. They have a shop with some beautiful items and they produce a journal for Lent and for Advent. My sisters-in-law went through the Advent one and shared about their wonderful experiences with it, so I really wanted to give the Lenten one a try. I’m really looking forward to it!

Regular Exercise
I kind of always have this as a goal, but I rarely achieve it. I am thinking that I can make this part of my morning routine: get up early to pray, journal, and exercise. Instead of this purely being a physical goal, I want make it part of my Lenten observation. When it’s tough to get out of bed in the morning and I’m faced with the choice to stay comfy and cozy or get moving, I can offer the sacrifice up as a prayer.

Passing on Alcohol, Soda, and Juice
I definitely enjoy a glass of wine here and there, and, while I don’t drink them often, both soda and juice are things I enjoy too. I’ll opt for water instead throughout Lent.

I have some other smaller things that I am planning on being more mindful for, but there is no distinct line or goal (cut back on coffees out, pack lunches most days, fast more often, avoiding extravagance, being more generous, praying with my husband more), so the above three things are my main focus.

If you’re willing to share, what are you planning on doing for Lent?

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

January: Books I Read



I have been wanting to read more, so at the beginning of the year I set a Goodreads goal of 24 books in 2017. That’s two books per month, in case you had trouble doing the math ;). So far I have finished four, so I am two books ahead of schedule! I really like using Goodreads to track books that I have read, books that I want to read, and also to track how far along I am in each book. It is so satisfying to me to check in each time I read and see my progress increase as I inch closer to my goal.

I like to read a mixture of genres, and I find different times of the day are better suited to different genres as well as different formats. I really like borrowing audiobooks from my local library through the OverDrive app for my walk to and from work (about 35 minutes round trip each day) and I find I do better with autobiographies when I am listening – I especially like when the author reads it as well. Before bed, however, I like a real book that I can turn the pages on. This is when I like to read fiction, my favourites being either the classics or chick lit. I like switching between a more dense, more involved classic novel and a mindless, light-hearted chick lit novel. I also like to have other books on the go that fall into either professional development, spiritual, lifestyle, or health/wellness. Sometimes I have a lot of these on the go, and sometimes just one. It kind of depends on what extra time I have. Right now I am taking two night classes, so the only reading I can really get in is right before bed and while I walk.

So, on to the books that I read this month!

I Heart Paris – Linsdey Kelk
This was the first book that I finished in 2017. I had actually started it at some point in 2016 (I have a lot that I started in 2016 and never finished). I first found Lindsey Kelk when I read The Single Girl’s To-Do List and I enjoyed it so much that I sought out other novels written by her. I came across the I Heart series and quickly became hooked on the adventures of Angela with her best friend Jenny, her boyfriend Alex, and her friends and family back home in England. As the title suggests, the majority of this book took place in Paris, which I really enjoyed. Lindsey Kelk has a major talent for describing the setting and each story speaks to the wanderlust in my heart. This is the third book in the series, following behind I Heart New York and I Heart Hollywood.

I Heart Vegas – Lindsey Kelk
The fourth in the series above, I enjoyed this book too and flipped through it pretty quickly. I have actually already read the fifth book in the series first; it was pretty hard to get actual print copies of these books when I was looking, and I got my hands on the fifth one first. Even with reading the book that came after, I Heart Vegas as well as I Heart Paris we still great and the story wasn’t ruined by knowing what came next (Angela still got into mishaps and kept me on my toes!). I highly recommend this series if you enjoy light-hearted reads.

Eat, Pray, Love – Elizabeth Gilbert
I had started this book long, long ago. Long before the movie was even a thought. For some reason, I got half-way through her time in India and I just never picked it up again. I haven’t let myself watch the movie all this time, because I wanted to finish the book first. So, when we moved in to our place after getting married and I started walking to work, I knew which book to choose to listen to while I walked. I enjoyed this book, as much as I enjoy any book that involves travel and other countries. I really liked how Elizabeth Gilbert was reading her work too – it always seems better when the author can read it because he or she can place emphasis in the same places that they would have when thinking and creating the work. I think this book had some good messages about not letting life control you and taking the time to slow down and find peace. I do think, however, that you would want to find your own Truth before reading or listening to this book, because someone who is searching could really be swayed.

I picked up this book on the recommendation of my friend Brandi. This book is a really aesthetically pleasing discussion on and guide to simple living. I know that minimalism and simple living has really almost become a fad lately, but this book goes beyond that. (And, honestly, it’s becoming a fad because so many people are recognizing the value in it). Erin Boyle talks about her approach to possessions, space, and even time. This book is something I know I will read over and over again and refer back to through different times in my life. I find her words both inspiring and calming – her approach being so peaceful that reading what she has to say almost provides a tranquility that I’m sure would be heightened by following some of her methods.


There you have it! The four books that I read this month. I hope to come back next month with a few more books to share. Until then, do you have any recommendations for me? Have you read any of these books? If so, what did you think? What else did you read this month?

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting this blog!

Monday, January 30, 2017

We Were Wed

wedding, saskatchewan, catholic, catholic wedding, saskatoon

On a lovely, not quite snowy enough day in December, Daniel and I stood before our friends and family. We held each other's hands, said our vows, took part in the Wedding Mass and joined many others before us in taking that integral step towards loving each other for the rest of our lives.

It was a beautiful day, with so many loving people.

Since then we have moved into our first home together, traveled for our honeymoon, celebrated my birthday, celebrated Christmas with our families, celebrated the New Year, I went back to work after a month off, I began a new semester of university night classes, we have meal planned, we have disregarded meal plans, we have been present at the baptism of our niece (and goddaughter), we have celebrated Daniel's birthday, we have traveled for a family wedding, we have visited Daniel's brother and his family, and we have done all of this while trying to figure out this marriage thing.

I always knew that marriage wasn't some magical switch where everything became perfect once we were wed. We knew that there would be some struggles, old and new. Maybe some things were easier, like not having to drive home at the end of the evening, and being able to be together while getting necessary things done around the house. But then there were the hard things. Things we anticipated, and things that we didn't. It has already been a beautifully hard and refining journey, and we're only about two months in.

The sacrament of marriage brings grace. The grace that is necessary in order to love the person before you. We have absolutely failed in many regards, but we have grown and succeeded too. Here's to a lifetime of loving one another <3.
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