A Buck Each

Who took advantage of the awesome Pier One deal offered recently? $10 off a $10 purchase, um…yes please!

Stemless Wine Glasses from Pier One

The coupon expired on Wednesday so I made my way over to my local Pier One this evening to pick up two new glasses. They cost just under $6 each, so after the coupon and tax, both cost me $2.05.

As I wandered the store I also notices some beautiful dishes. Aren’t these lovely?

Decorative Tile Plates at Pier One

I absolutely love both of these plates. It took everything I had not to bring a few home with me.

 Swirled Plates from Pier One

Last weekend I found these gems at HomeGoods; although, none of them came home with me.

Linen Setee

Love this chair…

 Natural Linen Tufted Chair

 Multi Cubby Entry Table

Chair and a Half, Loveseat

 Morroccan Style Lamp from HomeGoods

At Costco I found VitaMix for under $400!!! If I had an extra $400 I would have bought it, that’s a crazy deal!!

 Vitamix at Costco under $400

…and because I have really nothing else important to say tonight, I have noticed a major growth spurt in my corn.

Before…they were looking VERY sad…I figured they would be dead within a week.

Beginning a Container of Corn on the Cob

Now, several weeks later, they are thriving, even in 95+ degree heat each day.

 Container grown corn on the cob

Ok, that’s all I got today. I’m exhausted.

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Average Errands

I had such high hopes for today. The parentals were going to bring their truck to my house so I could go to Pier One to purchase a third dining chair when I realized that my $20 coupon had expired! There is no way I’m paying full price, so I cancelled the trip.

So I packed the pup in the car and headed to the local dog park, where he ran, chased, rolled, and bathed in mud. Unfortunately it gets a little too messy to take the camera so I don’t have any pictures.

Although, if my back seat is any indication, I think we brought half the dog park mud home with us.

Later I drove to Costco and Office Depot for some goodies. I picked up a new Magic Bullet Blender at Costco since mine started smoking 2 weeks ago. I was in the middle of blending my green smoothie when smoke just started pouring out of the back, it freaked me out. So when it stopped smoking, I chucked it in the trash.

I also picked up a 5lb bag of frozen brown rice for quick meals and an 8lb bag of frozen cherries for smoothies. There were also some work supplies, Bio Oil, a book, and some other things that I can’t recall right now. At Office Depot, I purchased some writing supplies because I can’t avoid a Back to School sale. Even though I’m not in school right now, back to school makes me giddy. I love me some stationary supplies. I’m a total nerd.

Next up was Lunch…

I was craving Fish Tacos, but since I’m not eating meat right now, I knew I needed an alternative. So I replaced the fish with black beans.

Cabbage, Cilantro Dressing, Black Beans

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Added Avocado, just because.

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They turned out pretty good, not as great as the fish, but a nice alternative.

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Followed by Late July Organics Cookies. The Chocolate Cookies with Vanilla Green Tea filling are AMAZING. My tip is to keep them in the fridge, they tend to get melty in the pantry. Seriously Amazing!

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I’m keeping it low key this weekend and staying in, so Lunch was followed by a nap. A glorious 3 hours fast asleep.

Now I’m cleaning my kitchen, which is not nearly as glorious, but somewhat more necessary.

Couponing at Target

In the past week I mentioned my love for couponing. In fact I got a few emails asking me about it, so I thought I’d share a recent trip and a few of my favorite tips.

First off, I don’t coupon every week and I don’t coupon on every shopping trip. In fact, I do a majority of my food shopping at Trader Joe’s and Henry’s Market and they don’t accept most coupons. I specifically coupon for household, pantry, and personal items.

I do 99% of all my coupon shopping at Albertsons, Safeway/Vons, and Target. Of all three, Target is my favorite store to coupon at, because you can get some amazing deals.

Tip – Collect your coupons!

I collect my coupons from a variety of sources. My favorites are the Sunday Paper and the Target website. Most people know about the Sunday Paper, but rarely do they know that Target posts their own coupons on their website. In most cases you can use a Target coupon and a Sunday Paper (manufacturer) coupon on the same product. Now you can see why I love doing my shopping at Target.

Lately I’ve found more and more coupons posted on Facebook when you LIKE a company or product. So if you really like a product, check out their Facebook page.

Tip  – Do your prep work!

One reason people get overwhelmed by Couponing is that they don’t know where to start. So I’ll make it easy for you, go buy a Sunday Paper. It’s well worth the $1.50. Or have just the Sunday paper delivered, it’s usually cheaper to pay for the subscription.

The next best tip I have is to follow couponing websites. They’ll do all the research for you, post the sales, and tell you which coupons to use. It’s really quite dummy proof. Take a look at a few then narrow it down to your favorites so you don’t get overwhelmed.

KrazyCouponLady.com

TotallyTarget.com

I add the sites to my Google Reader so I can just check the new posts throughout the day from my phone. 

Tip – Stick to the script!

I make a list when I do my couponing and I do my best to stick to it. I get into trouble when I start browsing. So usually once a week I’ll scan through the best of the weekly deals and pull the necessary coupons. Then I’ll either write or type out a list of deals. There’s no right way to make the list, just go with whatever works best for you.

Tip – Stay Organized!

Make your lists and paperclip your coupons together so it’s easy to just pull out correct packet at the checkstand. So why do you see 3 sheets in the below picture? I was going to hit 2 different Targets, because I absolutely hate doing multiple transactions in one store. It’s just my personal preference, and I happen to have 2 Targets within a mile of my home.

The third piece of paper is for research. Sometimes I have coupons, but I don’t know if they are a good deal since I don’t know the cost of the item. So I made a list of those coupons and I’ll check prices in the store and decide if I want to use the coupons. I specifically do this because I don’t carry all my coupons with me in the store. I have binders, but I always leave them at home. Again, just a personal preference.

Couponing List

Tip – Think outside the box!

Coupons are not the only way to save money. These days a lot of stores are giving discounts for using reusable bags. Target gives you 5 cents for every bag you use. Seems like too little to matter, but it adds up. 5 bags will save you $.25 and that is the same as many coupons you have clipped, so why not save the additional quarter.

Also, specifically for Target, consider getting the Target Debit Card. Let me be clear, IT IS NOT A CREDIT CARD. The Target debit cards links to your checking account and has no credit check to apply. There’s no fee for using it, and it saves you 5% on your purchase. 

Tip – Check the Register!

I’m not fanatical about it, but I do keep an eye on the register when the cashier is ringing up my items. Sometimes thing ring up wrong or a coupon doesn’t catch. If you’re paying attention, the grand total won’t be a huge surprise.

Tip – Keep your Receipt!

When I leave the store, scan your receipt. If you see a discrepancy, walk back into the store and let them know. If you come back a few days later, it can be harder to get the proper resolution. I also hold onto my receipt at home in case I have any returns later. You may also be able to get a price adjustment if some of those items go on a better sale in the next few days. But you can only get the money back if you keep the receipt.

 

Today’s Haul…

Extreme Couponing Haul from Target

Today was a decent haul, but not the greatest since there were a few unexpected items in the cart. Remember that whole part about sticking to the script, sometimes I just can’t help myself. In fact, that hapless browsing means I purchased a full price umbrella that I thought was on clearance. I didn’t catch it at the register, but it stood out when I scanned the receipt. I’ll be returning it this weekend.

I’ve broken down everything below in case you want to see how it worked for me. Although, I won’t do this very often, unless people really want to see it.

I spent OOP (out of pocket) $98.64 $84.52

I saved $82.72

I’m returning the full price umbrella which was $12.99 (+ tax) which is how my OOP lowers to $84.52.

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Vintage Converse Handbag (Clearance) $34.99 $24.48

Target Website Coupon -$5.00

OOP: $19.48

Mini Umbrella (Clearance) $12.99 $6.48

OOP: $6.48

Up & Up Dryer Sheets 40 count $1.37

Target Website Coupon –$.50

OOP: $.87

V8 Fusion Vegetable Juice (2 Bottles) $2.99 each

V8 Fusion + Tea (1 bottle) $2.99

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.50

Target Website Coupon -$1.00

Manufacturer Coupon -$2.99 (Free Fusion Tea with purchase of the above V8 Fusion)

OOP: $3.48 ($1.16 each)

Silk Soy Milk $3.99

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00

OOP: $2.99

Up & Up Apricot Facial Scrub $2.10

Target Website Coupon -$.75

OOP: $1.35

Dove Men’s Body Wash with bonus trial Deodorant $3.99

Dove Women’s Body Wash with Bonus Trial Body Wash $4.08

Manufacturer Coupon -$3.75 (off the Men’s BW with the purchase of the Women’s BW)

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00 (off the Women’s BW)

Target Website Coupon -$1.00

OOP: $2.32 ($1.16 each)

Olay 2ct Body Bar (2 packages) $1.99 each = $3.98

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00

Target Paper Coupon -$1.00

OOP: $1.98 ($.99 each)

Dove Men’s Care 8pk Body Bars $8.79

Manufacturer Coupon -$4.00

Target Website Coupon -$1.00

OOP: $3.79

Reach Floss $.89

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00

OOP: MoneyMaker $.11

L’Oreal Liquid Eye Liner $7.99

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00

Target Paper Coupon -$1.00

OOP: $5.99

Sally Hansen Hard as Nails $2.04

Sally Hansen Nail Color $2.04

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00 (off the Nail Care Product)

Manufacturer Coupon -$2.00 (if you purchase the above Nail Care product)

Target Paper Coupon -$1.00

OOP: $0.08 ($0.04 each)

CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara $6.94

CoverGirl Single Eyeshadow $3.00

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00

Target Peelie Coupon -$3.00 (free eyeshadow for purchasing the mascara)

OOP: $5.94 ($2.97 each)

Aussie Hi Shine Hairspray $5.68 ($2.84 each)

Aussie Instand Fix Hairspray $2.84 each

Manufacturer Coupon -$3.00

Target Paper Coupon -$1.00

OOP: $4.52 ($1.50 each)

Zyrtec 5ct $5.29

Manufacturer Coupon -$5.00

OOP: $0.29

Up & Up Allergy Relief $4.04

Target Website Coupon –$0.75

OOP: $3.29

Clif Z Bar 6pk $3.49

Target Website Coupon –$1.00

OOP: $2.49

Hefty One ZIp 22ct Storage Bags $1.97

Manufacturer Coupon -$0.15

Target Website Coupon –$1.00

OOP: $0.82

Iams 8lbs Dog Food $13.00

Iams Rebate Coupon -$12.99

OOP: $0.01

Zantac 150mg 24ct $7.59

Manufacturer Coupon $5.00

Target Website Coupon –$2.00

OOP: $0.59

Tums 3rolls $1.92

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00

Target Website Coupon –$1.00

OOP: Moneymaker $0.08

BenGay Deep Pain Relief $6.84

Manufacturer Coupon -$5.00

OOP: $1.84

Composition Book $1.49

OOP: $1.49

Sharpie Permanent Marker $1.49

Target Website Coupon –$1.00

OOP: $0.49

Papermate Ballpoint Pens 24ct $2.69

Target Website Coupon –$1.00

OOP: $1.69

Ziploc 100ct Bags (2 boxes) $5.00

Manufacturer Coupon -$1.00

Target Website Coupon –$1.00

OOP: $3.00 ($1.50 each)

 

Whoa! There you have it, my haul from this week in one trip to Target.

Oh I forgot to mention that by using my Target Debit card, I saved an additional $4.67.

Back On Track

This is why I love BodyBugg!

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The past few days I’ve been frustrated with my weight loss. I know the scale shows variations in your weight throughout the week and for this reason, I typically do my official weigh in on Monday mornings. However, every so often I do weigh in everyday just because I find it interesting. Variations for me tend to be about 2- 3 lbs on any given day. So you can understand that when I was expecting a weigh in of 253, I was perplexed when the scale showed 260. 260!!!! I get 2-3 lbs overnight, but 7, really!?!

The first day I chalked it up to monthly bloating, or not drinking enough water, so I just kept a close eye on what I was eating and moved on with my day. However, the next day, it showed the same thing. Now I was just pissed off. I just changed the batteries the other day on this stupid scale…

…wait! I just changed the batteries!

There’s no calibration on this scale so the calculations shouldn’t be off due to a battery change, but I thought I’d test it just to be sure. So I grabbed 30 lbs worth of hand weights and set them all up on the scale. My 30 lbs of weights lit up the screen at 36.7 lbs.

Whoop! Whoop! My Scale is wrong!

I mean I’ve said that before, but this time it’s actually TRUE!

So tomorrow we’ll see what I weigh in at AFTER I subtract the 6.7 lbs and all should be right with the world again. At least all will be right with my hips, the world will still have some issues to work through.

 

Otherwise my life has been pretty boring so I won’t…well, bore you. I’ve been mostly busy with work since several of my coworkers are on vacation and I have to cover for them. Oh, and I’ve been sucked into the show, I Survived… on Hulu. It’s a lot like the show I Shouldn’t Be Alive, but without the dramatization. Geez, some of those stories are insane. Makes me want to learn Krav Maga, how to shoot a gun, install supersonic bolts my doors, and never get on a boat.

A Weight Off My Shoulders (& Hips)

Vacation Mode Goals Update:

Two days into the work week, and the goals have been successful so far. When I was on vacation, I was able to easily get up early and walk Baxter around 6:30am. I honestly didn’t think I’d stick with it, since I’m a die hard night owl. However, yesterday and today I made a point to get up early and take Bax on a 30 minutes speed walk. By 7am it’s already 70 degrees, so you go for a walk early or not at all.

Before setting these vacation mode goals…

On a typical weekday I would wake up late, check my email before I’m even out of bed. Immediately begin stressing out about work issues, skip breakfast, feed Bax, then head upstairs to pace the office for a bit, talking to myself, while my computer starts up then start working.

After…

Wake up before the alarm clock and put on my tennis shoes while Baxter eats breakfast. Head out for a 30-40 minute walk with Bax. Return home, shower, eat breakfast, check twitter/news then head upstairs and scan my work emails on my phone while my computer starts up, start working.

A MAJOR difference if you ask me. I have been oddly calm both yesterday and today, and I’m completely caught up on work right now. I think it all has to do with the morning walks.

I’ve also kept up with my workout, healthy eating, being presentable, and making lists. I haven’t meditated like I’d hoped, but I think I can consider the walking an outdoor mediation for now.

 

A Weighty Issue…

I promised to be very honest about a lot things on this blog, including the constant fight I have with my weight, which I’ve battled all my life. I feel somewhat comfortable opening up about this now since I’m actually making some progress. Accountability is key so, here we go.

If you’ve been keeping up with the blog since the beginning (which was a mere week ago), you may remember reading that I gained an extreme amount of weight over the past two years, 80 pounds to be exact. At the time, I was just breaking 200 lbs after losing about 30, so I wasn’t even at my goal weight when I started gaining again. At my highest I dented the scale at 280…OUCH!

There are so many reasons why I got to that point, depression and disordered eating being the main two reasons. But as anyone who’s battled their weight over a lifetime knows, it’s never as easy as it seems to fix the issue.

I’ve never been one for quick fix diets, weight loss pills, or ‘celebrity’ diets. I’ve never tried the cabbage soup diet or eaten only protein. I’ve never done a master cleanse or delighted in the cookie diet. These plans have never sounded effective to me, since I’ve never been looking for a quick fix. I have, however, been looking for a healthy lifestyle that felt right to me. One that would be tasty, help me lose the weight, then later maintain a healthy lifestyle. One that wouldn’t feel like deprivation or make me desire to binge on 8 dozen cupcakes at a time. Lately I’ve been blending several ways of thought together to create an eating plan that works for me.

In November, I started following the 17 day diet because the eating plan made sense to me. At the time I was binging a lot and following the strict eating plan helped me get back on track, like eating bootcamp. In a month, I had lost 20 lbs and started feeling so much better about myself. However, life got in the way and I stopped eating healthy, gaining back about 10 lbs.

My mom used to tell me that you couldn’t change a person, they needed the desire to change for themselves in order for the change to stick. I second that by adding that it can’t simply be a ‘desire’ to change. I’ve desired a change all my life, but I’ve finally reached that moment where I want to live authentically and make the necessary changes, not just desire them anymore.

In the past few weeks I started reading Crazy Sexy Diet, Tracy Andersons Method, Food Revolution, several resources by Kathy Freston, as well as many other publications. All were leading me toward the same thing, a Vegetarian eating style that cut out processed food and sugar. Seems so simple, but I guess I just had to be ready to learn, and ready to make the change for good.

My food plan lately has been completely meat free and I feel amazing. I’ve also cut out a majority of dairy and gluten, but I do plan on slowing integrating those back into my diet. I have no desire to give up milk, cheese, or eggs long term at this point. I also know I can physically tolerate Gluten, so I don’t need to cut it out to be healthy. In the end I’m torn on whether I’ll continue to be vegetarian long term or just a majority of the time. However, it fits in my lifestyle now, and it has had such a positive effect on my life so far.

 

Progress Update…

I’ll try to make weight progress updates a weekly feature to keep myself accountable. So far, I’m down 28 lbs and I’ve almost broken through the 250s. I can’t tell you how amazing that feels, just 28 lbs lighter and everything is easier. I’ve also started following Tracy Andersons 30 day Method (although I’m not following her eating plan) and I absolutely adore the cardio element. I grew up dancing and this is essentially 30-40 minutes of pure happiness everyday. How can you go wrong with that?

Adding the dancing, strength training, and morning dog walks have obviously made a difference. Next week I’ll give you a weight loss progress update along with measurements to see just how effective this new eating/workout plan really is. Here’s hoping that the scale has me in the 240’s, and I’ll officially be down 30 lbs.

 

How else have I changed lately…did you hear I cut off 20 inches of hair recently! Maybe that accounts for a few of the pounds!

Staying in Vacation Mode when Going Back to Work

Vacation is over and work started this morning at 8am. I suppose it’s both good and bad news that my boss is now on vacation. Good because it will be somewhat quiet this week, and bad because I’m his out of office coverage. Catching up on my own inbox will be a challenge, it doesn’t make it any easier to be responsible for someone else’s at the same time.

I’m struggling a bit on how to keep that relaxed feeling from vacation while blending back into the workplace. So I came up with a few goals that I hope will help me stay relaxed and motivated.

 

Keep up with the morning walks for Baxter

I used to walk the little pup when I got off of work, but with the heat lately that has been a challenge. If he doesn’t get a walk, he becomes a little terror no matter how many times I run him up and down the stairs. So while I was caught up on sleep, I started walking him in the morning. It’s been foggy and cool each morning which makes it perfect for a walk. I’m going to try and keep it up now that I’m back at work. It will let me take some deep breaths of fresh air before work and I don’t have to worry about Baxter turning into a little evening gremlin. 

Schedule my workouts

I recently starting the 30 Day Method by Tracy Anderson and it’s key that I do the workout everyday. It’s a great way to zone out at the end of the day and dance out all the stressful energy.

Morning Meditation

It only takes 5 minutes for meditation to make a difference. In general I’m good at meditating, but I’m bad at doing it regularly. So I’ve downloaded an app to my phone that times meditation and plays a light chime when time is up. If I keep up with the morning dog walking, then it should be easy to sit for a few minutes when we get home.

Be Presentable

Ok, this is an odd one. I’m a telecommuter and work from a home office everyday. It’s very easy to just roll out of bed and work in my PJs, and comfortable too. However, you feel like a slob when you realize it’s 5pm and you’re still in your PJs. Since getting my haircut, I’m going to make a bigger effort to get dressed and fix my hair everyday as if I was going to a office. I think it will make me feel better about myself each day and more motivated to be productive.

Get back to Lists

When I’m really relaxed, I’m a total Type B personality. I go with the flow, but when I’m working or stressed, I swiftly move to Type A. I LOVE lists! They make me happy. Unless I’m on vacation, I list a lot of my life. I have specific to do lists for work, home projects, finances, workouts, eating, etc. I’m a list junkie. It takes a lot of stress out of life when you don’t have worry about forgetting the little things, because they’re on a list!

There you have it, 5 ways to reduce my stress as I blend back into the daily grind.

 

How do you stay in vacation mode when you go back to work, any tips?

Brass to Bronze

Gold is not my favorite color, or maybe I should say, Builder Brass is not my favorite color. It’s a common color of accessories/fixtures in many builder grade homes. Even though I didn’t purchase my home brand new, many of the builder grade amenities were still in place. The previous owner didn’t do many any upgrades.

When I moved in, one of the first projects I completed was to change out all the interior and exterior door knobs. They were a hideous mix of gold, brass, and silver. In fact there was a weird mix of indoor and outdoor knobs throughout the house. One of the bedroom had a key lock door knob on the inside of the room, it was strange. So my dad purchased a house full of door knobs as a housewarming gift and I spent the next week re-knobbing 15+ doors. I picked the oil rubbed bronze knobs and it looks incredible. Such a small difference gave the house a whole new fresh look. I only wish I had a picture of the ugly doorknobs so you could see the difference. I only have a picture of new knobs, which in my opinion, is a much better look.

Oil Rubbed Bronze Door Knobs, White Interior Doors

(Yes, that is green carpet. Also a gift from the previous owner. Hopefully I can change it out in the next year)

Now the doors look great, but all the closets still have shiny gold/brass, and it makes me sad.

Brass Closet Door Hardware

Brass Closet Door Hardware

First step was to tape off the area. I didn’t want bronze closet doors or walls. I used this tutorial for taping around curved items, it’s genius!

 Brass Closet Door Hardware, Circular Tape for Painting 

Then added some Kraft paper to block off the rest of the area, since I sometimes go a little wild with spray paint. Now, I know I could have removed both closet doors, taken them down the backyard and painted them outside, which is always preferable with spray paint. However, all the doors are on the 3rd floor and getting through the narrow circular staircase was going to be a challenge, not impossible, but very difficult since I’m doing this project on my own. I really just needed a second person if I was going to take everything downstairs. So I opened up all the windows in the bedroom, kicked the dog downstairs, and grabbed a big fan to help with ventilation.

 Brass Closet Hardware, Kraft Paper Taped up for Painting

After two coats of paint, I am no longer sad. The oil rubbed bronze is beautiful!

 Oil Rubbed Bronze Spray Paint, White Closet Doors

Sometimes it’s the littlest things that makes the biggest impact. 

Oil Rubbed Bronze Spray Paint, White Closet Doors

 Oil Rubbed Bronze Spray Paint, White Closet Doors

Making My Way Back Home & A Drastic Change

A week into the new blog, and I’m going MIA! What’s with that?

I actually hit the power switch on all my electronics yesterday and this morning (I don’t even know where my phone is right now) to enjoy the last few days of my vacation. I go back to work on Monday and I’m starting to feel claustrophobic already. This vacation has been amazing, so relaxing and rejuvenating. I have a whole new outlook on life after this week and a brand new hairstyle too.

Yesterday was my first time driving back to Orange County in over a year. A little over a year ago I purchased my first home and moved inland to South Riverside County. The most common question I get when I share this information is , WHY? Why would you move from Orange County, it’s beautiful! That is usually followed by someone that wants to know if I know any of the OC Housewives or anything about Laguna Beach.

For the record I don’t know any of the Housewives, although I think one of them lives near my brother, and I saw another in line at Paradise Bakery a while back. I do watch the show because it’s fun to recognize the areas where I grew up. Wait, I take that back, I grew up in Santa Ana, I’m pretty sure they won’t venture there. As for Laguna Beach, I never saw the show, sorry. Although I did play Volleyball at Laguna Beach High School a few times, it is a beautiful school.

Now…as to why I moved from Orange County… it’s all about the $$$

As you can imagine, property prices in Orange County are ridiculous! My main goal in moving was to find a place with an enclosed yard for my not so little pup and a second bedroom for an office, and it was difficult to find in the OC. I’m not married and live on a single income so obviously $$ was an issue. So at this point in my life I decided to sacrifice location and move inland. I was able to find a great place with 3+ bedrooms, garage, backyard, etc for a excellent price. I was also able to take advantage of some federal/state credits which made all this possible. I do plan to move back toward the beach in the next few years, but for now it’s all working out pretty well. I’ll give you a home tour in a future post.

Back to Yesterday…

I desperately needed my haircut. Yes, I could get my haircut near my house, but this was going to be drastic and I wanted someone that I trusted completely. So I jumped in the car and headed to Fashion Island in Newport Beach to chop off all my hair. By the way, if you are ever in Newport, schedule an appointment with Lauren at Toni & Guy…you will not be disappointed!

This is my absolutely crap-tastic before picture. I hate pictures of myself, so you’re lucky that you got half of me. When straightened, my hair hit just above my butt, and was a wild hot mess.

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The salon was somewhat giddy to see me cut so much hair, 17 inches to be exact. Plus another 3 inches after the ponytail was cut. This will be donated to Locks of Love so it can go to a good cause.

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About an hour later, I literally had a weight off my shoulders. I was worried about cutting it so short, but Lauren taught me how to style it and I am thrilled with the final cut. It’s a HUGE change, but feels so good. (Not the greatest picture below, I had to take it with my phone). I thought the shorter cut would make my face look, ummm rounder. But it had the opposite effect and it actually made my face look thinner.

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On the way home I drove along PCH which is what I miss the most. Driving along the beach is always so beautiful and relaxing.

Corona Del Mar…

Corona Del Mar, PCH

I always loved this building…

 Corona Del Mar, PCH, Concept Studio

Driving from Newport to Laguna …

 PCH, Beach Highway

Sweet Beach houses in Laguna…

 Beach House along PCH, Laguna Beach

My trip to the beach was over way too fast so I’m excited to go back in 6 weeks when I get my hair trimmed.