I’m partial to the month of February because my birthday is in February, as well as the beloved Hallmark holiday, Valentine’s Day. How fun to have a holiday all about love! Whether celebrating this heart filled day with your sweetheart, children, family or friends, Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to show a little love. I adore Valentine’s Day for so many reasons – all of the pink, glitter, hearts, and endless excuses to bake, craft and decorate.
This year I’m going to surprise my husband with a special treat (sorry, I have to keep it a secret in case he’s reading!), and the boys with cards and matching Pjs, as well as a celebratory breakfast. I love to make heart shaped pancakes with berries and maple syrup, and I know that will be a meal all three of my boys will be over the moon for. A festive dinner will be in order for our family too, and of course a chocolate dessert, perhaps I’ll bake Ina’s indulgent brownie pudding.
We are also celebrating Valentine’s Day with C’s sweet preschool class, and so I ordered Paw Patrol themed Valentine’s from our favorite Shop Love Lucy for all the kiddos – C loves those pups!
And so, whether you’re looking for Valentine’s Day cards to send to family and friends or for your kids classmates, decor or baking treats, I’ve rounded up some of my favorites. I hope you enjoy these goodies and wishing everyone a happy Valentine’s Day!
For the past few weeks, every night when I’ve washed my face at bedtime, I’ve glanced over at my makeup brushes and made a mental footnote to wash them. Oh and treat myself to a new makeup bag. Except (cringe), I still haven’t washed them nor have I purchased a new bag. Life is busy with two little ones and often small tasks – like washing makeup brushes – seem to fall to the wayside. Good intentions always remain, and yet I can’t seem to remember to give those beautiful brushes the bath they deserve. We shower and wash our faces, so why do we procrastinate cleaning the tools that help to enhance our natural beauty?
As I applied my evening skin care routine last night, it occurred to me that, gasp, unclean brushes could be filled with bacteria and contribute to pesky breakouts. Despite dustings of pink blush, creamy foundation and graphite colored eyeshadow, the brushes look clean and still do their jobs, and yet I know what is lurking under those bristles. I’m a bit of a germaphobe and so this concept alone served as motivation to change my ways!
I did a bit of research, and learned that (no surprise!) brushes collect leftover makeup, bacteria, dead skin, oil and dust and if they haven’t been washed, you are applying this right back on to your face – yuck! Also, great quality brushes can be pricey, and so by regularly washing them you can extend the life of the brush. And so, I set out to get smart on the ins and outs of washing make up brushes and of course share my findings with you. Enjoy and cheers to the week ahead!
WHEN TO WASH
Ideally, wash your brushes once a week, to help remove build-up, and think of it as another step to your beauty ritual. Sunday is a nice day to give your brushes a good cleansing, as it will ensure everything is fresh for the week ahead. Not to mention it’s so easy peasy and takes a matter of minutes!
WHAT YOU NEED TO WASH
Set up a little station by your sink, and make sure you have the following supplies:
Tea tree oil (it helps disinfect, and is optional)
HOW TO WASH
First, rinse the brush tip under some warm running water. Be sure to only wash the actual brush bristles and not the handle or neck of brush, as water can break down the glue that holds the bristles and brush together.
Next, place a generous drop of shampoo into the palm of your hand (and a drop of tea tree oil if you choose), and gently twirl the brush tip to create a nice bubbly lather.
Rinse the brush under clean running water until the water runs clear. You might need to do two applications of shampoo for very dirty brushes, and again, rinse the soapy brushes until the water is clear.
Christmas is 10 days away dear readers! We’ve been savoring every minute of December, trimming the tree, baking cookies, decorating gingerbread houses, admiring twinkling lights, watching our favorite Christmas movies, and tomorrow we’re having breakfast with Santa Clause at the downtown Neimans – one of our most special traditions. We started this tradition when C was only 4 months old, and have been going ever since. We dress up, visit with Santa, have a delicious breakfast, and then there’s a little musical performance for the children. It’s so festive and such a fun activity for the whole family! Seeing Christmas through the eyes of the boys is so magical, and we’re loving every second, as we know this time in their childhood is fleeting!
I finished up most of my shopping today, and spent the afternoon wrapping packages and addressing a few final Christmas cards. For those of you who still have a bit of shopping to do (there’s no shame is last-minute gifts!), I wanted to share some of my favorite gifts for her, him, and the littles. With so many options out there it can be overwhelming, and so I created curated lists to inspire you. I hope you all are enjoying this special time of year with your loved ones, and happy holidays!