Monthly Archives: July 2011

New Website Obsessions

These are some websites I have stumbled upon recently that I love— enjoy exploring them for yourselves!

Stylemint

Those Olsen twins have done it again. It’s not enough that they have legitimized their design empire with Elizabeth + James and The Row. Now they have launched a new website dedicated to t-shirts they design and style in different ways. For the debut collection in July they featured four styles. And the dangerous part: the tees are only $29.99 each with free shipping. Once you make a purchase, you’re signed up to be charged once a month unless you opt to skip a month by the respective 5th day. But to tell you the truth, I might be opting to buy more than just one per month! These  tees are awesome.

I placed an order a week ago and just received it in the mail. It arrived in minimal, recycled, and recyclable packaging with subtle Stylemint labeling. The tee itself was wrapped in some paper and tied with a turquoise leather cord. Enclosed was a note from “MK + A” thanking me for joining. The tee that I ordered, the Melrose henley in navy blue, was folded neatly into a small rectangle. Upon inspection, the tee feels unbelievably soft and of good quality— and the fit is excellent. Damn you Olsens!!! Now I have another monthly addiction! As-if those twins needed more money thrown their way. So it goes.

Stylemint Welcome letter

Birchbox 

Birchbox is yet another monthly addiction; they sell a $10/pere month sample pack that you need to sign up for via subscription. This month’s sample pack was curated by Cynthia Rowley and included samples of “Purity made simple” facial cleanser by Philosophy, Zoya nail polish in “Shay”- a shimmery nude color, AHAVA Mineral Hand Cream, Shine Flash spray from Redken, and a full-size apricot Kind bar.  I so far have additionally bought a full-size bottle of Shine Flash spray– it was that good, I couldn’t resist! Ironically, I couldn’t buy the Shine Flash on their website; I was directed to go to Redken.com. I ended up buying it at some other website though after a tedious web search. How annoying! But I digress…. The contents of the box were quite impressive and seemed worth more than $10! I will be keeping my subscription for awhile.

July Birchbox inclusions

Daily Grommet

Daily Grommet is a once-daily email newsletter featuring a new Need-To-Have product. I have so far only purchased one product featured on the site; the Scout Regalia raised flower bed system, but I have wanted to purchase many more! Exercising restraint has been difficult on this one, as it has the other websites featured in this post. The website features products that are unique, useful, and well-explained via blog-type posts and videos. A lot of thought goes into the products featured on this site, which I appreciate. I will perhaps use this website more in the future to find unique Christmas gifts.

Scout Regalia raised flower bed kit from Daily Grommet

Opensky

Opensky  is a website featuring sales curated by your favorite celebrities. Sounds slightly cheesy, but this is truly an addictive site. So far my favorite celebrities to follow have been Zane Lamprey, Ming Tsai, Alicia Silverstone, and Patricia Velasquez. Other celebs include Bobby Flay, Kelly Killoren Bensimon, Veronica Webb, Molly Sims, Mariel Hemingway, and Padma Laksmi. The list goes on from there and is quite extesive! The products featured are really personalized to the respective celebrity and well-thought out. Many times the celebrity (or more-likely the celebrity’s publicist) will write out an explanation of how they use this product in their own lives. Some negative quirks to the site though exist: They limit you to being able to “follow” (thus see the sample sales) of only ten celebrities at a time; a feature that I think is limiting the sales potential of their site. Also instead of just one daily email, you receive one from each celebrity you choose to follow if you choose to be informed via electronic communication of new sales— an inbox annoyance. I hope they realize these missteps soon! But anywho, the emails feature awesome products so I can’t bring myself to unsubscribe yet anyways :) Their strategy, though annoying, is effective.

Water Marble Nails Update

I recently made quite the make-up score at CVS; I bought 8 bottles of essie nail polish (MSRP $8+) for $2.08 a bottle. Whoo hoo!

Some essie nail polish finds

And it inspired me to make another water marbled look for my nails. I call it “A la Piscine”; a reminder that I would rather be at the pool than sweltering in the recent heatwave that has encompassed the northeast.

A la Piscine

For the base I used Alpine Snow by Opi. Swirl Ingredients: beach bum blu by essie, trophy wife by essie, lapis of luxury by essie, aruba blue by essie, and Fairy Dust by China Glaze.
For those of you that missed my post with full instructions on how to achieve this look with your nails CLICK HERE.

Tracy Anderson Metamorphosis: 50 Day Update

Well, it’s been a full 50 days since I first embarked on Tracy Anderson’s Metamorphosis journey and I must say the results have been quite impressive. I haven’t lost much weight (6 pounds total), but that wasn’t my main goal in any case (I’m NOT following her crazy diet). What has been very impressive is the 4″ off the hips! 4″!!!! I had never seen my hip size go below what I call “the bridesmaid threshold” (the size which I was 8 years ago when I had to be a bridesmaid in 3 weddings that year— the size I thought was my teeny tiniest). Now my hips are 2″ smaller than that. Amazing! For what it’s worth, I have also lost .5″ from my arms, 1″ off my waist and 1.5″ off my thigh circumference.

But it hasn’t been easy. In all fairness, I have grown to hate Tracy more and more every day in spite of my amazing results. I wonder if I would hate any trainer that achieved results, or if it’s just her obnoxiousness that gets to me. She doesn’t count reps. She doesn’t say please or thank you. She says obnoxious things in a matter-of-fact manner instead of an encouraging one. Half her leg moves are downright impossible- some resulting in me falling haphazardly onto the mat as she in the background was saying “this will help with your balance”.  Today I managed to smack myself in my own head with a 3 pound weight as I was trying to keep up with her “arms” portion (Tracy only does things in spaz speed). Ugh!

In spite of my obvious workout personality conflict with Ms. Anderson, I’m still more determined than ever to finish the Metamorphosis program. 4″ is very hard to argue with. Let’s hope there’s more results where that came from.

A Vegetable Garden Update

Here are some more pictures of how my vegetable garden is coming along…. It’s doing quite well! I can’t wait until things begin to ripen.

My vegetable garden

Spearmint- with a note from my Mom

tomatoes- " Better Boy"

Squash, fennel, eggplant

Garden beans

Cherry tomatoes

Right side of the garden