Top Knots and Curly Locks

Friday, October 30, 2015

October Book Review

Can I get an "Amen," please?  I can't be the only person out there who deals with this almost daily!  I always have a book with me and always want to pull it out and read.  #bookwormproblems  This was a good month for reading as I discovered two new authors that may end up on my favorite author's list.  Now, on to this month's book review.

Home Front by Kristin Hannah
Wow.  Just wow.  I couldn't put this book down.  This book is about a couple whose marriage is on the rocks when the wife gets deployed.  The story goes back and forth between the family at home trying to find their way without their mom and Jolene, the wife/mom, overseas on the battle line.  This book really opened my eyes; sure, I've read some war books, but they all make going off to war seem romantic: the handsome boyfriend goes off to war while the girlfriend stays faithful and loyal while they write romantic letters back and forth.  This book is different, it doesn't romanticize war, in fact, the author sat down with real life military pilots to make sure everything was as accurate as possible.  Be sure to have tissues on hand when you read the book, I can't even tell you how many times I cried.  I can't wait to read more books by Kristin Hannah.

Three Girls and a Baby by Rachel Schurig
This was a cute, easy read -- definitely what I needed after reading Home Front.  Ginny rekindles with an old flame and their one night together results in her becoming pregnant.  Ginny's two roommates come to the rescue and are with her every step of the way through the pregnancy and raising the baby.  It was a cute story and there are more books in the series that deal with the other roommates.

To Be With You by Opal Mellon
Very rarely, do I not recommend a book, but this is one of those times.  Seriously, save your money.  I don't even remember downloading this book -- I'm hoping it was a free download from Amazon.  The plot line seems sweet and romantic: A girl joins a dating service and her best friend joins in hopes that he'll be set up with Nicole.  It sounds sweet, right?  Well it wasn't.  The writing was terrible, the plot was shallow, descriptions were weird and the characters were annoying.  It was a short book, but still way too long in my opinion.

Until There Was You by Kristan Higgins
I sure knew how to pick out the tear jerkers this month. In high school, Posey had a crush on Liam, but the feelings were unreciprocated.  Flash forward nearly 2 decades and Liam, now a widower and father of a teenage girl, moves back to town.  Posey goes weak in the knees, as well as most of the women in town -- Liam was quite the player -- but is it finally Posey's turn for love?  The book was so sweet and had me tearing up several times.  I'm so glad I was introduced to Kristan Higgins and can't wait to read more of her books.

Now & Forever by Susane Colasanti
I wanted to like this book, I really did, but I didn't.  It was just ok.  This book was about Sterling, just a normal high school senior, whose boyfriend turns into a rockstar overnight.  The story follows Sterling as she navigates her new life in the spotlight.  I found the story and writing to be weak and predictable.  The chapters were short and the story was a little choppy and jumped around a bit.

What books have you read this month?  I'm always up for suggestions!  Be sure to follow me on Goodreads to keep up with all my reads!

Friday, October 23, 2015

Friday Favorites

It's Friday and I'm linking up with NarciAndrea and Erika to share this week's Friday Favorites! 

Did you know that National Pumpkin Cheesecake Day was this week?  Be sure to check out my recipe here and enjoy!

Carrie Underwood released her newest album -- "Storyteller" -- today and I can't wait to get my hands on it.  Carrie and Sam Hunt joined forces on the song "Heartbeat" and I LOVE LOVE LOVE it!  I can't wait to listen to the rest of the CD.  It's been a long 3 years without new music from Carrie!

I'm so obsessed with this sweatshirt from Kate Spade.  It's so comfortable and isn't the bow the cutest thing?!?

We relived some of our favorite Halloween costumes this year, and this one makes the list.  Check out how I made it and see other favorite costumes here.

It makes me so happy to see more and more people discovering FabFitFun boxes!  There's still time to order your fall box so don't delay!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Wardrobe Wednesday Breakdown

It's been a while since I've done a Wardrobe Wednesday Breakdown, mainly because I'm really awkward at: 1. Taking Selfies/Mirror Pics and 2. Asking people to take a picture of me.  I bit the bullet and did the former of the two.

I was in Louisville weekend before last for a wedding and two exits from our hotel was an outlet mall.  And in that outlet mall was a Kate Spade store!  And in that Kate Spade store was a sale: 50% off everything and then another 20% off on top of that!!  Add to that the rack that said "Under $100" and Mom and I were in heaven.  I feel like we did a really good job limiting ourselves, but we did have some fun!  I found this adorable sweatshirt and couldn't wait for temperatures to cool off so I could finally wear it.
I actually found the sweatshirt here but it's currently sold out.  

I mean how cute is that bow?  It's so comfy, too!

If you're impatient and don't mind it in a sweater form instead of the sweatshirt, there's this option.

My pants are LC Lauren Conrad Collection from a couple years ago.  I found similar pants of hers here -- and they're on sale!  Can we also just take a moment and admire my boots?  I love them and they're so comfortable!  They're "Sanabel" from Kate Spade Fall 2012 and just the best.  Since the shoes are no longer made, I did find you some other options.

Or these would both look cute.

Don't forget to go here and sign up for Ebates to get cash back for online shopping!  Pssst...right now, Nordstrom has 6% cash back for all purchases! :)

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Show and Tell: Halloween Costumes

I'm linking up with Andrea today for Show and Tell Tuesdays: Halloween Costumes!  Last year's costume is probably one of, if not my absolute, favorite costumes.  The best part, it was unique and a total DIY!

I was the leg lamp from A Christmas Story.  I saw a picture of it on Pinterest and thought "I can totally make that!"  It was super easy to make, all you need is a blank shirt, some puff paint, a lampshade and some fringe.  My grandfather cut out the metal inside of the lampshade for me, then I hot glued the fringe around the bottom.  Next, I took stencils and puff paint to write FRAGILE on the front and This Side Up on the back.  I thew on some tights, and some short shorts underneath the shade, and voila! Costume complete.

Another favorite costume of mine was this:
Back in college, I dressed up as an eskimo.  Not only was the costume cute, but it was warm, too.  And let's face it, that was the main reason I bought it!  I didn't want to be cold while I was out on Halloween.

I can't wait to see everyone else's costumes!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Friday Favorites: FabFitFun Edition

I'm linking up with NarciAndrea and Erika to share this week's Friday Favorites!  This week it's all about my new FabFitFun box! You can sign up to get yours here!  By using this link, you'll save $10 and get $275 worth of product for just $39.99!

 Take a look inside!

Ready to be opened!

First up we have Flawless Skin Fluid by Doctor D. Schwab; it's a lightweight moisturizer that's all natural and helps to balance skin.
Keeping with skincare, we also got a Gold Radiance Luxury Facial Mask with Collagen and Rose Oil by Passport to Beauty.

I can't wait to wear this Glass Crystal Bead Bracelet by Tribe Alive -- a company that partners with artisans all over the world to help impoverished women by providing them with sustainable incomes.

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little scared to try this Strength Tubing Ankle and Total Body Tone with Tubing: Lower Body and Core DVD.  I've used resistance bands before, but this looks even more intense.

You guys know how much I love my Gnome Charger, so I'm super pumped to get another portable charger!

This product is a 3-in-1: it's a primer, gloss and lip stain all in one little bottle!  And as if that's not enough, this Lucky Lip Stain by Manna Kadar Cosmetics promises not to dry out your lips and give plenty of moisture.

This season's box was all about charity.  Not only does the Tribe Alive bracelet help women, this Purple Purse Charm by Allstate Foundation Purple Purse helps support victims of domestic violence. Did you know that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month?  This tassel is great because not only does it help spread awareness, but it's the perfect fall accessory for any purse!

We were able to pick the color we wanted for the FabFitFun x Tappan Collective Umbrella, but I decided to be surprised.  It turns out I was sent the sunshine yellow umbrella.  (Sorry I don't have an actual picture of it, I've been too busy using it!)  I might have squealed a little because, guys, I'm the girl with the yellow umbrella!!!!  Are there any other HIMYM fans out there?  You guys know what I'm talking about! ;)  Anyway, this umbrella is super cute and makes any rainy day better.  It has "Rain Rain Go Away" written all over it.

And one more shot of the inside of the box because it's so true: "All you need is love and pumpkin spice lattes."  I would have stopped just at pumpkin spice since I don't like coffee, but I'll take it!

Have I convinced you to sign up for your own box yet?  If so, go here to save $10 and get $275 worth of product for just $39.99!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Friday Favorites

It's Friday!!  That means I'm linking up with NarciAndrea and Erika to share this week's Friday Favorites! 

Oh.My.Gosh.  How did I go this long without watching Revenge?  Whatever the reason, I've discovered the show now and am hooked.  Seriously.  Like it's a problem how much I've been watching it.  Not only is the storyline brilliant and so deeply intertwined, the fashion is impeccable!  Seriously, next time I go shopping, I'm going to ask myself WWETW?  What would Emily Thorne Wear?  I'm only on the second season and can't get through it fast enough ... but on the other hand it's going by too quickly.  The series is only 4 seasons and I'm already dreading the finale and it being over.

Mom and I went to a live taping of The View this week and guess who was on!  Not only was Candace Cameron Bure back at the hosting desk, John Stamos was a guest.  Just let that sink in.  JOHN. STAMOS.  Uncle Jesse and DJ were reunited on live TV and I got to see it in person!  I just about died when they announced that Candace was back hosting.  Mom and I fan-girled so hard when John came on set.  Let's throw in a little Flashback Friday and check out this picture:

Yes, that's me with John Stamos!  I saw him on Broadway in 2012 in a revival of Gore Vidal's The Best Man.

While in New York, Mom and I also saw Aladdin on Broadway.  When the Magic Carpet started flying, I got instant chills.  It was so magical.  Really, words can't do it justice.

I've just started the Seamless Bible Study and am so overwhelmed by God's work.  What started out as a study that was supposed to be 50-100 women has gone viral to more than 6,500 women.  I'm so excited to see where God leads us throughout the study.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

New Month Resolutions: October

Last month I had one goal and one goal only.

It's hard to judge exactly how I did on this, but I enjoyed being in New York City for the month and did my best to take it all in.  Now, on to my resolutions for this month.

1. Blog books as I go: Usually I read and at the end of the month, I put together my book review post.  This month, I'm going to switch it up a little.  My review is still going to be at the end of the month, but I'm going to write the post as I go along.  I'm hoping that not only will it be easier for me, it'll make the reviews better since the book will be so fresh in my memory.
2. Read 4 books: And speaking of books, my goal is to read 4 books this month.  That's one more than last year.  Plus, doesn't fall weather just make you want to curl up under a blanket with a cup of tea and read?  Ok, that's me all year, but I'll take any reasoning I can get!
3. Seamless Bible Study: Are any of you ladies participating in the Seamless Bible study?  It started out as a private group two people created hoping to get 50-100 women to partake in the study and has now grown to more than 6,500 women!  The book is sold out on Amazon and my local LifeWay has ordered at least 3 different shipments.  Is God good or what?  Today marked the first day of the study and I'm go excited to see how God works in my life and the lives of the other women over the next 7 weeks.
4. Unpack
Yep, that sounds about right.  I've been home for 2 days and my suitcase is sitting in my room, unzipped and still pretty much packed.  This month, though, I plan to unpack it in a reasonable amount of time.
5. Embrace Fall: This is pretty much just a nice way of saying "Stuff my face with anything labeled 'pumpkin.'"  Also, living in West Virginia, the changing of the leaves is so beautiful.  This month, I'm going to stop and really notice them.

What are your new month resolutions for October?