Monday, December 31, 2012


Happy 9th Birthday, Audi! Love you so much! ♥

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Drying fingernail polish in cold water.

While on Pinterest a few weeks ago, I came across a pin that claimed holding your freshly painted nails in cold water would dry the polish instantly. So you know, I just had to try it!

Here is the original claim:

"How to Dry Nail Polish Quickly: Submerge wet nails in cold water for 3 minutes. The polish will dry completely, and it gets rid of any that got onto your skin!"

Let's do this!

First, my freshly painted OPI nails (2 coats of polish). I left the additional polish that got on my fingers, since it states the cold water will remove that, also.

Here's my bowl of water. I add some ice to assure it was cold.

Freshly painted fingers in! It was cold!! I actually kept my fingers in for 4 minutes, just for good measure.

Pulled them out & immediately pressed my fingertip onto a nail. Yep, left an imprint. So I grabbed a paper towel & dried my hands.

Hmm. Well, I'd have to say this claim is a big, ol' flop. (Sorry about the blurriness - I still haven't quite figured out the focus on my new phone.) The cold water didn't remove a lick of the extra polish, either.

Exhibit 2. Epic fail.

Guess I'll continue to use my faithful Butane. Butane! Can you believe I use Butane?! How stupid is that?! Ha! This actually works good at setting fresh polish, then I'm just careful with mine for the next hour or so.

Happy polishing!

(You can find the original Pinterest article here.)

Friday, December 28, 2012

Some of my most favorite Shaklee products!

I finally got some of my most favorite products listed! Click below to see what products I just love & won't live without!

My favorite products!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Featured product - Shaklee's Get Clean Fresh Laundry Concentrate!

I love, love, love Shaklee's Get Clean Fresh Laundry Concentrate silky powder! Simply delish, with no harmful chemicals! It's natural, biodegradable & hypoallergenic, with no phosphates or chlorine. I began using this particular 14 lb. box on Nov. 1st. We are a family of 6 & I do a lot of washing! I just now filled my jar up for the 2nd time & you can see in the bag how much is remaining. I used it 30 days in Nov., 30 days in Dec., Jan. & Feb. for the current jar & then a 3rd refill! Wow! This box is going to last me approximately 5+ months! For a full load, it only takes 1/4 cup - just a tiny bit. The scent is mild & yummy. I just can't say enough good things about it - including how clean & soft our clothes are (I'm VERY picky & take very good care of our clothes!) In addition, it makes me so happy that I no longer use a chemical detergent that gets absorbed through our skin! Read all about it & purchase yours here: Get Clean Fresh Laundry Concentrate.

I love to do laundry! Happy laundry to you!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Getting reacquainted.

If you've known me long, you know one of my greatest passions is photography. Natural light photography, specifically. I think I've done a post close to this one, stating that I just don't take photos like I used to. Although I am taking more photos, it's still not to my satisfaction. I also mentioned that I had shifted all of my extra time & energy to my other passion - Shaklee. I love & adore Shaklee! Nothing has changed about that & nothing will ever change about that. I still devote time to Shaklee, but now that my business is getting more established, I really want to focus on & increase my photography. I will be posting more photos here, like I used to do in the past. I am ready & I am excited!

Christmas, for the most part, is over. We do have my family Christmas on the 30th, & then Audi's birthday on the 31st & Jaguar's birthday on January 1st. Five days later, is Mercedes' birthday. Whew! To say this time of the year is exhausting for me is an understatement. Especially with a few illnesses thrown in there, to boot. But as proven years past, all will be fine, all will be celebrated & all will be happy. I still have my review to do, too. I wanted it completed a few weeks ago, but sometimes my intentions get the best of me & what I want to accomplish just isn't realitic to what actually gets accomplished. Most of the time, I bite off more than I can chew. My review will get done, but it will probably happen the 2nd week or so in January, once things slow down. And if it happens sooner - that'll be great, too.

So amidst wrapping up Christmas & three birthday celebrations, I will squeeze in more research time to find another great Canon lens for my camera. Due to poor in-house lighting on Christmas day, I had to use my flash on all photos I took. I am still just sick over it. I am completely anti-flash, so when I'm forced to use it, I'm just not a happy camper. New lens with a large aperture it will be, just as soon as I can get to a reputable camera store.

Now. Time to organize images, back up all images, clear my CF cards & yet again, charge my camera battery. Time to ignite that passion!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Day of Silence.

On Tuesday, December 18th, there will be a blogger day of silence. We will post the button and that's it. Please try to not post anything else that day if possible.

We are also raising money that will go to an organization in the memory of this tragedy. The organization is called The Newtown Family Youth and Family Services. Here is the official description of the support service we are donating to:

"Newtown Youth and Family Services, Inc. is a licensed, non-profit, mental health clinic and youth services bureau dedicated to helping children and families achieve their highest potential. NYFS provides programs, services, activities, counseling, support groups and education throughout the Greater Newtown area.


Please visit THIS PAGE to make your donation.

We can't imagine how they must be feeling, especially this close to the holidays. We would love for you to spread the word on your own blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Let's make a difference and use blogging in a positive way. Thank you in advance for participating.


The Blog World

p.s. If you would like to, copy-paste and repost any part of this, please do. Share on.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Shaklee's Nourishing Scalp Treatment!

Every week, I plan to implement a 'Featured Product' on my Facebook page & blog. Once a week, I'm going to feature one of my most favorite Shaklee products! And there are many, so get ready!

Tonight, I'm featuring Shaklee's Nourishing Scalp Treatment. This product is for anyone who has thinning hair or is concerned about hair loss. It's completely normal to lose hair every day, but I felt as if I was losing more than the 'normal' amount. Daily, I began taking Biotin (everyone should be taking 3,000 mg of Biotin every day! Not only does it promote healthy hair/skin/nails, it also helps maintain a steady blood sugar level! Available at any pharmacy - about $3.) & I'm now using the Nourishing Scalp Treatment. I haven't noticed subtle results, I have noticed tremendous results!! Wonderful improvement! Now, when I shower, as well as before I blow dry, I have little to no hair loss. It's amazing! I'm almost 46 years sophisticated & unfortunately, thinning hair comes with the territory. I'm literally stopping it in it's tracks! I have long hair & I have a lot of hair & I'm going to keep it that way! You just apply some drops of this product & massage it into your scalp. I LOVE it! Read all about it & order yours here: Nourishing Scalp Treatment.

Every girl deserves beautiful, full, healthy hair!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Merry Christmas decorations - 2012!

I love Christmas! It's such a magical time of the year.

My children's tree. I love how fun the colors are on their tree! With uniformed ornaments. That I possibly rearranged after they went to bed.

(And my pitiful little dresser that still needs refurbishing. But I love it.)

My tree, which I just love! I love traditional Christmas colors. Next year, however, I want a little 'Tiffany' tree. Since I can't deviate from traditional colors, I think I'll need a little 3rd tree to play with.

Praying for all those involved in today's horrific, devastating tragedy.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


His very first concert last night. He did so well. Heck, they all did so well! Largest band they've had in 8 years. Was a great Christmas concert.

My husband has been in MN since Monday & returns tomorrow, so hopefully I can get back to blogging. And I'm glad he's returning - mama's getting tired!

Happy 12.12.12!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Armpit update!

Never thought I'd be posting those words on my blog! Ha!

On November 1, 2012, I wrote this blog post about why I changed to Shaklee's paraben-free Essentials Antiperspirant Cream & what little miracle occurred during the process.  I thought it was time for an update!

Quick review.

For years I had this unsightly underarm rash, under both arms. I had it for so many years, I don't even know how many years it was. I just lived with it. What I failed to mention in my Nov. 1 blog post is that the rash(es) was actually more pronounced than is shown in the photos. My old iPhone didn't have a flash & it never displayed proper color on images - the photos were always lighter than they were in person. Example - when my hair was jet black (don't ask), my iPhone images displayed my hair color as being dark brown. The red rash(es) you see in the photos was actually deeper red than they appear. Not larger, just redder.

When I stopped using my commercial deodorants, my rashes disappeared! They darn tootin' did. And that's not even why I switched to Shaklee, it was just an extra bonus. I'm delighted! After all those years - gone. The red, irritated rash(es) dissipated, but kind of left a light brown coloring from 'scarring' (as I call it). I was fine with that!

The photo below was taken a few days ago, with my new iPhone, that does have a flash. The coloring is so much better! You can see, 6 weeks after using Shaklee's Essentials Antiperspirant Cream, the rash(es) is still gone! And though it may be hard to tell, now, so is the scarring! Also, I have the cream on in the below photo, because I want to show you how your underarms will appear after applying the white cream. It instantly disappears! You can see just a tad of wetness right in the crease, because I had just applied it & it hadn't completely dried yet. I LOVE this stuff!

As you can see on the jar, I began using it on 10.13.12. Six weeks later, this is how much is still left! This will last me about 30 more days & then it will be out. So all in all, this little jar, which I have used every single day without fail, will have lasted me 90 days or so! Yes, please!

Too expensive? You decide. It's $12.00 for members ($14 non-members). So basically, that's $4 monthly. What are you paying now? I know that Secret's newest line runs around $7 or so. And I know the Secret I was using didn't last me 3-4 months. So. Paraben-free? Yes. Visual proof that it eliminated a 'permanent' rash(es) caused by commercial, chemical deodorants? Yes. All natural & safe? Yes again.

I've said this many times, but I'll say it again - I am one very picky person. If I don't like a product, I'm not using it. It's just that simple. I don't care if I sell the stuff or not. I love products, so I only use what I like & what works. I've used this product for 6 weeks now. By now, I can call it. Ready?

Shaklee's Essential Antiperspirant Deodorant is the best deodorant I have ever used & I will never use anything else.

I'm 45 years old sophisticated. That means I've used a lot of different, commercial deodorants. And that means, I just made one heck of a claim.

Ironically, a friend of mine posted this article today on her FB page. I did not search this article out or even do any further research (I've done plenty). It just drives home the message I've been trying so hard to get out - it's just more proof that switching brands can benefit your health! Check out #3!

You can purchase the deodorant by clicking here. You don't need the parabens. Neither do your daughters, daughters-in-law, nieces & granddaughters. Parabens are present in 99% of breast cancers. For your health, please order some!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Top 12 cancer causing products in your home!

This is very important information - please take the time to read it!

The top 12 cancer causing products in your home! Click the link below to see the list of harmful, toxic chemicals!

A friend of mine, who has devoted countless hours of research on this very subject, added her own accurate statement after reviewing the list of the chemicals: "I appreciate this list, but the safer milk suggestion of organic SKIM is dead wrong! Always, always choose full fat (local grass fed cow milk is even better)!"

Truth be told, this is exactly why everyone, everywhere should be using most of Shaklee's non-toxic products! I will NEVER go back to commercial products! Go to my Shaklee site, join as a member & give your family the best possible gift ever - getting the dangerous, harmful, toxic chemicals out of your home once & for all! Shaklee products are the healthiest, best products I've ever used! You certainly do NOT need to order every single Shaklee product, but start with a cleaning kit & rid the toxic cleaning products & laundry detergent! Any change is better than no change at all!

Here is my Shaklee site:

Remember, you cannot put a price on your health & the health of your children & loved ones!

Follow me on Facebook for more information & fun stuff! Click here!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Adoring the simple.

A month or so ago, on a Friday, I had had quite a challenging day. When school was out, I picked the kids up & decided that even though early, we were heading to Chili's to just chill out (& so I could drink unlimited amounts of Diet Coke, but I didn't tell them that). I called my husband & told him my plan - my husband can pretty much make his own hours & it was Friday, so he told me he'd meet us there as soon as he could slip away. His office is a good 40 minutes or more away in Friday afternoon traffic, so I knew we would be there for a while. We ordered chips, queso & drinks, & let the afternoon drift away while we sat in a corner just being together, doing a lot of nothing.

Since then, I've repeated our little escape a time or two. Yesterday, as a matter of fact. As I sat there in the large corner booth, having an in-depth conversation with my 8 year old about a series of books he's interested in, I realized how very much I love our Chili dates. Early afternoon, the restaurant is quiet. No cartoons blaring, no phone ringing, no computer, no homework, no piano, no french horn, no loud pots & pans prepping for dinner, no dogs running amok, just us. Talking. Laughing. Sharing. Tic-tac-toe'ing. Listening. Enjoying. Yesterday, I recognized the fact that there are not near enough of these amazing, simple moments. 'Busy' has become our normal. My kids are growing very quickly. Time is fleeting. And I truly feel they need & desire our little dates as much as I do.

It's a true blessing what developed out of an exhausting, challenging day. And tonight, I'm truly, very thankful, for the simple. ♥

Monday, November 26, 2012


I took this one evening, several weeks ago. The weather was just beautiful, early evening, & I sent my children outside with play-doh. I snapped this with my cell phone & it's one of my favorites. I forever want to remember these simple moments.

Though I don't desire a 'mommy blog' any longer, I do desire to continue to post photos of my children every now & then. For quite some time, I have focused so much on my business, I've significantly decreased the amount of photos I take of my kids. Time to refocus & reprioritize. And now that Christmastime is upon us? I better charge my camera battery real good.

I'm almost finished decorating for Christmas, so I'll be posting those photos soon. I love Christmas. So much fun, anticipation, beauty & love! Time to live! ♥

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Some little things I do to save our family money!

Saving money is something I strive for, but I'm not great at. I'm still learning as I go, however, & do what I can to cut back in certain areas. I tried the coupon thing but gosh, it didn't work for me. It took so much of my time & I burned out quick. Finally, I gave it up. I do not use coupons unless there's one on the item I'm purchasing or I just happen to have one handy, for whatever reason.

But. I do try, & here are a just a few things I do:

I rewash & reuse plastic utensils. I send them to school in my kids' lunches, they bring them back & I toss them in my dishwasher basket. No need to buy more when these get washed & work just fine.

I reuse grocery bags. Not only do I use them at my garage sales, but I also empty bathroom trash cans in them, I empty vacuum cleaner canisters in them, I throw out leftover food in them, & then I walk them straight out to the garage trash can. I use these to save my large, kitchen trash bags. I don't have to purchase my kitchen trash bags as often.

Bar mops. I love bar mops! I use them for almost everything. These are strictly for my kitchen. Instead of dirtying a plate, wasting a paper plate or paper towel, we use these for quick snacks, fruits or in place of a napkin. We use the same one throughout the day (unless it gets icky) & at the end of the day, we shake them out & toss them in the laundry. You can get a bundle of them for around $5 at Walmart.

Shaklee's Microfiber Window & Mirror cloth. This thing rocks & saves so many paper towels! And no, it doesn't leave streaks whatsoever. Wash & reuse, wash & reuse.

Plastic containers for school lunches. I've looked at many options & I'm considering some of them, but for now, I use these. Sandwiches/whatever go in the large ones & the smallers ones hold raisins, carrots, ranch, whatever. Wash & reuse & it saves from using so many baggies.

Homemade shaving lotion. Yes! We use it. My husband uses it! Cracks me up. I'm experimenting still to make it thicker, but it totally works & saves so much money from having to purchase shaving gels. Recipe here.

And of course, I am saving a bundle using Shaklee's cleaners. Seriously. I purchased my kit in May & I have not had to reorder anything but the Germ Off wipes (I use those all around my toilets) & Dish Washer Concentrate. I can pretty much guarantee I won't need to purchase Basic H (makes THREE amazing cleaners!) or Basic G (disinfectant!) for another 6 months, at least. My Scour Off is running low, so I may need to reorder that in a month or two. Not only are they non-toxic, they just last forever & they work incredibly well.

So that's it! That's what I do as of now & like I said, I'm always searching for other ways to save. What do you do to save money? Please share!

Wishing you & your families a very blessed, happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Running behind my own schedule!

I have a blog post coming regarding little ways I attempt to save our family money. I wanted the post up last night, but I'm really running behind. My husband had Bronchitis & I now have Bronchitis & now my youngest son has Bronchitis (his is more allergies) - we were a little busy last week & I've just run out of time. Tomorrow, my husband heads up north for a few days, while the kids & I stay behind. Monday, we'll be gone all day with my mother. So, we have this & that & this & that & I'm pooped! But I'll have it up just as soon as I can!

Happy weekend!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

I have a secret!

My name is Melissa & I'M A HOARDER. Of certain items. Ahem.

What you are looking at is new, unused plastic utensils that I have gathered along the way for the last - TWELVE YEARS. Or so. I lost count.

We used to be very active in our church group & I used to save these because they came in handy for fellowship gatherings. When we'd run through a drive through or go on vacation or whatever, & because we rarely used them, I'd always hang on to the utensils (& obviously, some straws) the restaurant provided. And I could never get out of the habit. And I currently can't get out of the habit.

To put it in perspective, here's the pile next to my 4.5 year old daughter.

In my defense, in the first photo, they are 'organized' nicely, right? These have been taking up space on the top shelf of my pantry. And recently, on the bottom shelf of my pantry. (Well, heck, to be totally honest, we were beginning to have more utensils in there than food! Just kidding. Kind of.) Because I'm trying to declutter (now you know why), I decided it's time to break the habit. Let it go. Let them go, Melissa. Just let them go.

I know many of you are thinking 'well thank God. I'm not as bad as I thought I was.' You're welcome.

Wait until I show you my bank statements from NINETEEN EIGHT-FIVE.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Shaklee is offering free shipping for a limited time!

Starts tomorrow! Free lifetime membership with any Vitalizer purchase or shop for Christmas presents. :) This is also the perfect opportunity to join as a Gold Ambassador & become a Distributor! Get on my team & do this with me! :)

If I can help you in any way, please holler at me!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

I cleaned my freezer!

This here is one exciting post, let me tell you. I cleaned my freezer! Fun stuff.

Our poor, little frig/freezer. This thing is old. We've lived here now for 7 (I can't believe we've made it this long!) years, in the previous house 7 years so - 14 years old. A few weeks ago, I thought it was going out. But so far so good! We don't have an ice maker. It went out years ago & we just never got it fixed. We use ice trays! Remember ice trays? Would it be more convenient for a family of 6 to have an ice maker? Of course! But I don't complain. We are so completely blessed - I'll take the ice trays. :)

Truth - I don't clean my freezer (or frig) often. I'm a 'wipe as you go' kind of person, so deep cleaning isn't something I really think about. That said, a few weeks ago, my husband left the freezer door open all night & we lost all food (ouch!). So I took the opportunity to scrub it up.

Here's the before:

Pretty icky under the bottom basket & in the side trays.

And the tight areas? I clean them. All. Everywhere. I find something that will fit in the tight area & clean away! Those spaces, wherever they are in your home, need to be cleaned, too, not ignored. That's a butter knife I have stuck inside my cleaning cloth in order to slide it inside that tight area. I use knives, toothpicks, q-tips, whatever for those itty spaces.

Here's the after! It really did need to be cleaned - I'll definitely be cleaning my freezer/frig now on a regular basis.

Even though inside a running freezer proves challenging to keep surfaces wet, I went ahead & used my favorite (Shaklee) Basic G. I at least made an attempt at killing any germs inside the freezer, even though I couldn't leave it wet for the standard 10 minutes. I sprayed G on my cloth, getting it good & wet, & wiped away! I switched to a new cleaning cloth, after the cloth was soaked & dirty, before continuing to clean.

Next on the agenda? The frig. Can't wait!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Introducing Shaklee 180 - launching Jan. 1, 2013!

This so exciting! Shaklee has rebranded their 'Cinch' plan, which as of January, will be called 'Shaklee 180'!

90 days to lose weight!
90 days to learn to keep it off!

Facts! -

2 out of 3 Americans are overweight or obese. I am one of those Americans! Are you?

Obesity is an epidemic!

The typical dieter makes 4 weight loss attempts yearly.

Weight loss is the largest, single health issue confronting our country today.

Weight is the entry to health!

This new program inspires people to make a total turnaround from unhealthy to healthy!

This program is going to be affordable for every single person in North America!

All products continue to be all-natural - Shaklee 180 is a Holistic program!

All natural products, powered by Leucine, help you burn fat, not muscle!

Shaklee promised the most advanced technology & they delivered! One of the most exciting features is the new Shaklee app! This app allows you to:

Enter your food(s).
Take photos of what you're doing.
Every time you enter, it will get updated to your own personal Shaklee 180 page.
It tracks your progress!
Enter when you eat a meal, when you exercise, you can even talk to yourself!
And, it can be uploaded into a Facebook post, so others can see what you're doing - they will inquire & it builds & builds & builds!
Earn weekly, motivational rewards.
Significant winners get flown to one of the fashion capitals in the world - they get a whole new wardrobe & photos by a famous fashion photographer!

Weight loss is social marketing! Getting on this phenomenal weight loss program & losing weight allows you (& me!) to be your own walking advertisement & others will desire it! I am finally, slowly, losing weight - you bet your bootie I will continue on & I'm so looking forward to incorporating this new program!

2 kits will be available:

The 'Turnaround' kit - to lose the weight you don't want & reach your goal(s).


The 'Lean & Healthy' kit - to stay lean & maintain.

Shaklee tested this weight loss proposition & it was a huge success! I am so excited about this! No other company can even come close to what Shaklee offers! Shaklee is the best of the best!

Because this is a new, incredibly amazing new weight loss program, they anticipate it going viral! I want people on my team who want to share this new program & here's just one more fabulous incentive - when you get 3 people to join this program, you get your Shaklee 180 products free! Become a Distributor, start using the Cinch products, begin losing weight now & you'll have one heck of a testimony to pull others on board, because they will want it too! Do you know some people who need to lose weight? They need this!

Email me & let's talk further!

Friday, November 2, 2012

How I apply pencil eye liner!

I love my pencil eye liner & though I'm no professional, I thought I'd share how I apply mine & my thoughts on the pencils.

I only use eye liner pencils that can be sharpened. I've tried the others & I was never satisfied. The cream liners, that you twist as you go, didn't get sharp enough for me. The liquid liners, well, there's no way. My hand is not near steady enough to make it look decent. So pencil it is for me & has been for years.

I've tried many pencils & for the smooth application, as well as price, Cover Girl it is. It's creamy, it's smooth & it's great coverage. I like dramatic, so I like dark & thick. Cover Girl's pencil eye liners is perfect & it costs $5. Win/win. (I have very thin, wonky eyebrows, so I usually use this same pencil to lightly color in my eyebrows & then blend it in with my eyebrow brush.)

I think a common misconception about pencil liners is that they smear/smudge, & this leaves people thinking the liner is no good. Sometimes, yes, they do smear & smudge due to quality. However. What you are applying your liner on, also plays a part. Meaning, if you are using an oily eye makeup remover and/or an oily moisturizer under your makeup, that oily access is playing a huge part in how your liner performs.

Also, it's nearly impossible to apply a pencil liner to bare skin. Applying to bare skin, or attempting to apply to bare skin, is going to have stop & go results. There won't be a smooth, solid, thick line. Your liner needs a smooth surface in order to glide smooth & consistent across your lids. On a clean face, I apply moisturizer, then foundation, then powder & then my liner. And then I take a little wedge sponge & use one of the corners to smear my liner. The more you do this, the better the sponge becomes & it creates a soft, dramatic line. (Actually, all sponges get better the more they are used & fyi - latex-free sponges do not work well! You need latex sponges.)

Yet again, please pardon my bloodshot eyes. Due to chronic dry eyes, they always look like this. Always. It's icky. I go back to the eye dr. in a few weeks & will ask for some prescription drops. Again. Sigh.

I know you can't see the liner well. I was looking straight into my makeup mirror, but because my cell phone is lower, the photos look as though I'm looking up, hiding the liner. I was running late, so I'll try to get some more shots on another day.

In case you are wondering, I use $6 Maybelline mascara. I have used Maybelline mascara for a good 20 years & I'll never use another brand. I have never lengthened my lashes or used an eye lash curler (ow!). When I apply my mascara, I make sure to extend the wand all the way to the end of my lashes. I manipulate my lashes, using the wand, to get them where I want them to go. If they clump & they almost always do, I use a needle to separate them. No, I've never poked my eye, but I've come close!

There is nothing better than having a fab eye lash day! I got blessed in the eye lash department & I'm so thankful, considering I hate my hair!

Happy lining!