Trying Out Mineral Fusion Makeup

Many years ago I heard about something called “mineral makeup.” It was supposed to be better for your skin, so I gave it a try and loved it. However, over the years I’ve had opportunities to try out other types of makeup so it no longer is my go-to. I was recently offered the opportunity as a Smiley360 member to try out Mineral Fusion makeup, so I jumped at the chance!

Smiley provided me with a full-value coupon to purchase the Mineral Fusion product of my chosing at Target. I decided to try the Sheer Tint Foundation in Neutral.

Mineral Fusion Makeup Review

Mineral Fusion Makeup Review

I wanted to love this product, but overall it was not for me. When I squeezed the foundation out of the tube, watery liquid dribbled out, no matter how hard I tried to shake everything up first. I found that I needed to do quite a lot of blending to get the foundation to look less “caked on.”

Mineral Fusion Makeup Review

Also, the “neutral” is still too dark for my fair complexion. This, of course, is not something that Mineral Fusion did wrong. I’m just naturally pale. The other day I did my makeup using the Mineral Fusion Foundation and my daughter (who is 5) asked if I’d been a the beach. Out of the mouths of babes! But she has a point — I will keep this in my makeup bag until the summer is here and I have a little more color.

I would not totally give up on Mineral Fusion, though. I think I would love their lipsticks and mascaras.

According to Mineral Fusion: “Our products also help protect from environmental damage. We add age-defying antioxidants to all of our products – pomegranate, white tea, red tea and sea kelp, plus vitamins C and E – to defend against free radical damage. In addition, we enrich our products with specialized botanicals to provide targeted treatment that soothes and nourishes your skin. Our cosmetics are free from parabens, artificial colors, fragrances, gluten, phthalates and talc to ensure that even the most sensitive skin stays beautiful.”

Click here for a $3.00 off coupon and try it for yourself!

Happy Homemaker Monday

coffee & a croissant

I have to admit — it feels really good to get back into a blogging rhythm! One of my favorite memes was always Sandra’s Happy Homemaker Monday. And even though I’m not a SAHM anymore, I still consider myself a homemaker. I’m still cooking, cleaning, decorating, creating, and caring for my family. So let’s get to it!

The weather outside is:::
It’s cold, rainy, and windy today, and the week ahead is supposed to be on the cool side as well. I won’t complain, though. It’s not snow!

On the breakfast plate this morning:::
I had tea and a slice of my homemade banana bread, slathered with cream cheese when I first woke up. (I’ll post the recipe soon.) I felt like a Hobbit today having “second breakfast” after running a few errands. The grocery store had a box of croissants on the discount bakery rack and I could not resist them. I also treated myself to a latte.

As I look outside my window:::
The still-bare trees are swaying with the wind and the rain is pooling up. Yes, it’s quite messy out there.

Right now I am:::
I’m celebrating my husband’s birthday today! We actually don’t have much planned, but it’s still fun to make a big deal about it.

As I look around the house:::
Ugh, I have two baskets of laundry to fold and put away (it just never ends), a few breakfast dishes left to wash, toys that need to be put away… the usual remnants from the weekend.

On today’s to do list:::
routine thyroid bloodwork
quick stop at the grocery store
– laundry
– RSVP to a party

Currently reading:::
Nothing at the moment. I need to start a new book! Last week I finished listening to Girl in a Band, by Kim Gordon. Seriously, I love audio books so much! I was never a fan of them, but it’s probably because I wasn’t driving around every day. Since I got into them this year, I’ve “read” so much more than I have in years past. As for Girl in a Band, I have to say that I am surprised how much I love this book! I was never a big Sonic Youth fan, and I didn’t know much about Kim Gordon aside from the fact that she was their bassist. But because I am interested in a lot of peripheral music of the time I decided to give it a shot (oh, the benefit to working in a library!). Kim is a fascinating person. I love all the different stories she tells — from her youth, to her difficult relationship with her brother, to the NYC art world in the 80s, to the indie rock scene. It’s just so, so, so good. If you have even the vaguest interest, I receommend it. My only caveat with the audiobook: Kim Gordon is not exactly a dynamic reader. It was agonizing at first listening to her read in what I’d describe as monotone, but I got used to it.

On the TV today:::
I need to find a new show to get into — nothing on Netflix is really calling to me lately. If you have any suggestions for crime dramas (Criminal Minds, Law & Order type shows), I am all ears!

On the menu this week:::
Monday – Lobster pie (D.’s birthday)
Tuesday – Burgers
Wednesday – Cheesy chicken pasta with broccoli
Thursday – Teriyaki chicken, pineapple rice, veggies
Friday – ???
Saturday – ???
Sunday – ???

Favorite photo from the camera:::
L. picked one of my daffodils yesterday. She plucked it too close to the bloom to put in a vase, but a teacup worked just fine!
daffodil in a teacup

Prayers, Inspirational Quotes or Devotionals:::
“When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears.” — Anthony Robbins

Sunday Snapshots

daffodil in a teacup

What a beautiful weekend! The weather was seriously perfect. We have had a lot going on since Friday night, so today we opted to just stay home. Even though I was feeling kind of tired, I managed to get quite a bit done.

I started out with laundry, changing sheets, and remaking all the beds. Is it just me, or does that chore exhaust anyone else? Maybe if it’s just one bed it’s not so bad, but four? Whew…

Two of the bananas in the fruit bowl were getting really brown, and since I had a couple in the freezer too I decided to make two loaves of banana-nut bread. I’ll freeze one and we will have the other for breakfast tomorrow.

banana bread

D. made turkey stock the other night so I decided to make creamy turkey soup for supper tonight along with some garlic-cheddar biscuits. Simple & satisfying!



garlic biscuits

soup & biscuits

After everything was cleaned up, it was time to start planning out the week. I love sitting down with my craft punches, washi tape, and stickers and getting everything down on paper. I will probably never be an electronic planner person. I love my iPhone, don’t get me wrong, but I just have to write it down.


The kids and I are all watching a little TV before their bedtime, and quite honestly I’m ready to crawl under the blankets myself! I think I’ll take a cup of tea, maybe a piece of chocolate, and D. and I will probably zone out to a movie or something.

Hope you all have had a wonderful weekend!


april sunrise

What a week. What can I say? Ugh, it’s been a bit stressful with some unexpected news that wasn’t entirely unexpected, but… The timing just suprised us. Sorry to be so vague, but it’s not something I can get into just yet. Suffice it to say, we are seeing a problem as an opportunity, and going from here.

Aside from that, things have been pretty quiet. Just another week with school and work. Last night I got together with some of my favorite ladies for our monthy “Sips & Sups” gathering. Everone brings a dish and we enjoy delicious food, wine, laugh, and great company. Someone brought THE most delicous green bean dish: roasted green beans topped wih caramelized onions and dollops of whipped cream cheese. I am still craving it and will try duplicating it tomorrow.

Tonight is our very last Pinewood Derby — bittersweet! I think if I were just one of the parents and not a leader I’d be much more sentimental about it, but putting the event together is a lot of work, and D. and I will be happy that it is out of our hands. N. is very excited, though, and it will be a fun night!

sugar n' cream <3

I’m looking forward to a pretty laid-back weekend. Aside from a birthday party, there’s nothing on the agenda. I’ll need to catch  up on everything that fell through the cracks this week, though. Hopefully I will be able to carve out a little time for dishcloth knitting. (There’s always time for that, right?)

Happy Friday, everyone!

Blueberry Dutch Baby Pancake

Blueberry Dutch Baby

I first read about Dutch Babies years ago. I am pretty sure I clipped a recipe out of a very old “Taste of Home” magazine and filed it away. I never got around to making it. Last weekend we were watching an episode of “Bob’s Burgers” and somehow Dutch Babies were involved. My husband laughed  and thought that a Dutch Baby was some sort of joke. I explained that it was for sure a real thing! There was no no question: I was finally going to make my Dutch Baby. I looked through several recipes and finally settled on one to use as a base.

A Dutch Baby is sort of like a pancake, sort of like a clafoutis. It’s light and custardy and (as I would soon learn from my family) is not for everyone. While I thought it was heavenly, the kids were not as impressed. They probably would have preferred regular pancakes or a blueberry coffee cake. Nevertheless, I thought it was delicious and will make it again — even if it means I have to eat it all by myself!

Blueberry Dutch Baby
Inspired by: Everyday Food Magazine

  • 3 Tbsp. room-temperature unsalted butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a medium-sized cast iron skillet. (I did this by simply putting the skillet in the oven while it heated up. Just keep an eye on it so it doesn’t burn!)

In a blender (or large Magic Bullet cup), combine eggs, milk, flower, vanilla, salt, and 1/2 cup of sugar. Blend until the ingredients are well-combined and the batter is slightly foamy.  Remove the skillet from oven and add the blueberries. Then pour the batter into the skillet. Bake for about 20 minutes until the panacake is puffy, slightly browned, and the sides have slightly pulled away from the pan.

Dot the last tablespoon of butter onto the top of the Dutch Baby and sprinkle with the tablespoon of sugar. Slice into wedges and serve.

Blueberry Dutch Baby

My Garden – April 2015

stubborn snow

Today is what I’d call the first nice spring day. It’s sunny, it’s in the high 60s, and really you couldn’t ask for more after months of cold, snow, and more recently — rain. I decided to walk around the house and take stock of my plants. As you can see, winter still seems to be holding on. I found that bit of snow that refuses to melt!

The first things I wanted to check out were my lilacs. Last spring my parents scored some free lilacs for me and we planted them. I also got a horrenoudous case of poison ivy during yard work that weekend, so I was sincerely hoping they took. Otherwise the pain and itching would have been for nothing. I could barely believe my eyes when I saw tiny little buds on the stems! It looks like I will, at the very least, have some foliage. Hopefully there will be some flowers, too!


Next, it was on to my forcythia. They’re very healthy so really I just wanted to make sure the deer didn’t do a number on them in the last month. So far, so good!


My daffodils have sprouted (finally!) and by the looks of it could bloom this week!


The pussy willow out front seems indestructible. Seriously, this thing has thrived through quite a bit of severe weather.

pussy willow

pussy willow

I’m not sure what will happen with my lavender. I would love for it to come back! The leaves still smell heavenly, though!


And finally are some herbs and veggies my husband picked up for me on Friday. Two varieties of tomatoes, green pepper, sweet red pepper, and purple basil. I am hoping that I develop a green thumb this year! I’m glad, however, that he’s as optimistic as I am.

tomatoes, peppers, basil

Most years I get really excited about plants at the beginning of spring, but my interest wanes as we get into summer. Maybe this will be the year I finally get bit by the gardening bug!

A Fresh Start

 photo somethingnew_zpse5c14909.jpg

I’ve been blogging for over 14 years. Yes, you read that right. One September morning way back in 2000, I sat at my workdesk at the magazine I edited at the time. I’d had an online journal hosted at a site called Crosswinds (anyone remember that?) and was ready to make the leap and purchase my own domain. My own piece of Internet real estate. There were a few times I attempted to quit blogging, but I could never really let it go for good. After a while, it just becomes a part of who you are.

As you can imagine, a lot changed in Blogging Land during those 14 years. When I started, typical entries were just a couple sentences… snippets of life throughout my day (think: standard Facebook post). Then entries got longer, photos became more important, and I even monetized my blog (never really making much, but it was something everyone did).

That blog saw me through a lot: a wedding, the purchases of two houses, the births of three children, ownership of a wine shop, freelance writing work, the testing of many recipes, and even more crafting endeavors.

As these things happened, as life carried on, I started to feel like my old blog just wasn’t fitting me anymore. It was almost like I outgrew it. These days, all of my kids are in school and I work part-time at a local library. I’m not a twenty-something blogger. I’m not really a mommy blogger. Nor am I specifically a food blogger or a craft blogger, even though I fancied myself as such at one time or another.

I’m just a blogger. I like writing about my happily mundane life. And for whatever reason, I felt a weird pressure with my old blog — like I had to be something that I just wasn’t anymore.

Last fall, as a 39th birthday gift to myself, I purchased this domain name. I didn’t really know what I’d do with it, I only know that the pun amused me. My Crewel World. And after months of consideration, I finally decided that this is where I should be writing now. A brand-new home to chronicle my crochet projects, to take notes on recipes, to share my unsolicited opinions on books and movies, and to keep track of funny stories about my kids and family.

Really, I just want it to be fun again.

Change can be good and inspiring and it is often needed to keep things fresh. I’m excited about it! And I hope you’ll follow along.