Origins Skincare VoxBox

Influenster’s at it again!

A wise person once said, “Free things are the best things” (surely someone has said that) and I personally couldn’t agree more. If you have lots of Facebook friends, a blog, a strong Instagram following, or a combination of everything then you can totally get free things too. Sign up here!

Back to the Origins Skincare VoxBox. I received the following products:

Origins High Potency Nigh-A-Mins – I have never used this night cream before and am very excited to give this a shot!

Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask – This is a new-to-me mask as well, but the charcoal trend is going strong and I plan to do a full review on this later.

Origins GinZing Eye Cream – While the GinZing line is something I have tried out, I have not ever used the eye cream. I am really pumped about getting this stuff on m’bags.

Origins Checks and Balances Frothy Face Wash –  I pretty much love that the word “frothy” is part of the name of this stuff. I have used this before and absolutely love it! The consistency is super thick which gives me the feeling its really pulling everything off my face. I also love the way it rinses off and leaves my skin feeling nourished.

Origins GinZing Moisturizer – I have been a longtime fan of Origins VitaZing Moisturizer, which has a very subtle tint-release and SPF so I am really excited to try this one!

Have YOU tried any of these products from Origins?


*I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.

Our Vacation to Maui!

Hello little macadamia nut pancakes!

I am back on the mainland and tired AF. But here I am, reporting to you live from the couch as I watch The Office reruns and snack on Walmart Fruit Smiles.

Our flight to Maui departed around 7:30 pm on Thursday so of course, we all rushed to the airport early to have dinner and watch the Ducks game. YAY SPORTS.

Here are the #sportysickcute sweats I wore

The flight to Maui was relatively painless. I sat in the middle (wha-whaaa) but was able to sleep for a couple hours or so before tearing into my new bookclub book. Gathering baggage, getting the rental car and driving to our condo in Kihei was also pretty easy and before I knew it, we were all settled in and falling asleep to the sound of the waves crashing on the rocks below us.

The next day we woke up and had cinnamon rolls from The Cinnamon Roll Place (genius branding if you ask me) and mimosas.

I then slathered on my Alba 45 SPF Sunblock,  helped cover E with sunblock and we all hit the beach.

David and I took turns playing with E in the waves and hiding under the umbrella I rented in between. David waded out waist-deep in the water with her a few times and the two of them were such an adorable sight. After about an hour and a half, I noticed the tops of my feet (which were buried in the sand, but sticking out from the shade of the umbrella) were starting to turn pink so we packed ‘er up and headed in.

That night, we went to a local event called Kihei Fridays where I bravely took on this romper. #tallgirlproblems

There were food carts, arts & crafts, live music and my favorite – A MERMAID. You know  my ass was jealous of this broad. To make matters worse, she was super pretty AND nice. UGH. The mermaid was all, “Get in the picture!” to me so I wiggled into the makeshift mermaid tail they had for weirdos like me and we paid $5 a pop for the little Polaroid pictures.

Then David hopped in to get his “kissing a mermaid” shot (with her permission, I might add) and I was a sport.

E got to paint a mermaid shell, so whatevs. It was a win. We were all so wiped that night.

The temps were high 80’s while we were there, so we decided to alternate our aquatic adventures between the ocean and the condo pool. It was discovered after that first day on the beach that saltwater obliterated David’s Sport Sunblock and left him with some minor sunburns, so we decided to seek shade whenever possible.

The next day we ventured into Lahaina so David and his Dad could watch the Ducks game, while the rest of us putzed around and bought sh*t we don’t need.

I wore these face-takeover sunglasses from Ebay

First we had lunch at Bubba Gump!

Then Eliana and I strolled around, I bought a gelato and salt-water taffy because duh, while David and his pops stayed at the restaurant to watch basketball. We also discovered this amazing local coconut body butter with really good ingredients and we all got one.

The next day we drove south and made a stop at the Grand Wailea Hotel. We valeted the car and as we walked in, they totally thought we were guests and started putting leis on us and chatting us up and asking to take our photo. So we awkwardly went with it and answered their questions, “Oh yes, we are staying five nights!”, “Oh yes we are BEYOND excited!” and they took our picture and I tried to robot out of that situation.

There were this lady-band in the lobby as we came down the stairs and we told E to go out there and hula. Before we knew it, two of the ladies came down to teach her a little dance and perform a song! It was precious. So then I got out there too and it became not so precious.

The grounds were pretty amazing. And they have this adorable chapel too!

Later that day, we were so hot and sweaty from walking around the grounds that the three of us basically ran-walked into the pool. I fixed David and I a nice strong rum punch and I practiced my doggy-paddling. And on the subject, why is doggy-paddling considered so blase?  I get around JUUUUUST FINE.

The next day we went to the Maui Ocean Center and saw the  following things:

  • 89q2356823479234 fish
  • A tank a’ seahorses
  • GIANT sting rays
  • Small sharks
  • Sea cucumbers


The Maui Ocean Center did not have any dolphins or whales, which I really appreciated. Apparently there is an ordinance in the City of Maui that prohibits the exhibition of cetaceans (whales and dolphins). And while I love dolphins and would love to see one up close from the comfort of  the other side off a  piece of glass…I would MUCH rather them just be exclusive to the ocean. Ya feel me?

Later that day, we grabbed food + bevs at Captain Jacks before heading out to sea on a sunset cruise! Eliana was coloring the whole time and wrote me this note which MADE ME TEAR UP AT THE FRIGGIN’ TABLE:

Translation: Natalie is so beautiful and nice and lovable and cool. I love Nat.

I tell ya, this kid has my heart.

David’s dad and stepmom treated us to this little jaunt on a beautiful boat, complete with snacks and alcohol! I’ve literally never had so much fun in my life and seasickness was not an issue as I was a little snookered.

The last day, we went back to the beach and then had a little pool time. We made friends with a cute Canadian family and E really hit it off with their little girl. By the end of the trip, she was jumping off the edge into the deep-end like nobody’s business! So crazy how fast she progressed with swimming and how I made no progress whatsoever ;).

swoon 😉

That night, we got ready for a nice dinner out. I let E do my makeup…she was a tiny bit excited!

Here’s the before.

And the after.

Not too shabby. Except she left me a fatty mustache.

So I adjusted my makeup juuust a little and we went to the 5 Palms Restaurant in Kihei.

Toasted coconut dranks.

Coconut shrimp!!

Here’s David and E, pretending to sleep while we were waiting for the car. #matchingonvacation

The flights home were all drama-free and comfortable. Portland has greeted us with moderately decent weather and we’re happy to be home.

‘Til next time, Hawaii!

Vacation Haul

Aloha little babies!

We leave for leave for Maui today! I COULD NOT be readier. Haha readier. I’ts just this GD weather in Portland has just been soooo dreary. I might pee a little when I see a palm tree…and it won’t be the first time.

With that being said – ONTO THE HAUL!

I purchased the above selections from Target. I got the swimsuits when they were doing a BOGO and the dress was only about $20. Its a super soft jersey knit and (as you can probably tell) I really like black and white stripes these days.

Side-note: I am totally on board with getting a one-piece swimsuit, in fact, there are countless styles I have been in love with. But each time I have tried one on, it’s the same issue I run into with bodysuits. The length of these puppies just won’t cut it when you’re pushing 6 feet. And unless you’re fond of the CT it just aint pretty. So until I pony up the cash to get a one piece built for amazons, I’ll stick to my two-piecers. #tallgirlproblems

Speaking of swimsuits, we also picked out this little tankini for E. I MEAN.

I also picked out a couple new things from the makeup dept because duh.

I wanted to find an illuminating makeup primer with SPF that I could wear under makeup or by itself. After doing a little research, I decided against a high-end brand and decided on this Maybelline Master Prime with SPF 30. Anyone heard a’this?


I picked up the Buxom Full-On Lip Cream in Bellini on a recent trip to Ulta. They were doing their “21 Days of Beauty” sale and I scored this for just $10 (normally $18)! These glosses are my absolute favorite because of the gentle plumping effect and super shiny finish. I also LOVE this in the shade White Russian.

This Wet’n’Wild Megalength Waterproof Mascara is just $2.99 from the drugstore and I actually think it’s pretty decent. It definitely is lengthening, but not super volumizing. I find you can build it up pretty easily and even though it is waterproof, it’s not a little B to get off.

This isn’t necessarily for Hawaii, but I did pickup this Maybelline Master Precise Eyeliner at Ulta as my Stila Stay All Day is starting to dry up. Anyone used this before? Is it any good?

Buying Beauty Products from T.J Maxx?

Those who know me best, know I’m a Maxxinista through and through.

Not just because I love TJ Maxx, but because I’ve become extremely knowledgeable about the products to hoard from there, but also the ones to steer clear of.

As an example, here are great things to BUY at TJ Maxx:

  1. Obviously clothes, shoes
  2. Towels, bath mats, etc.
  3. Candles!
  4. Greeting cards/wrapping paper (really good quality for CHEAP)
  5. Wall decor (just try not to buy too many of the quotes signs. I say 2-3 per home is acceptable)

However, there are few things to def NOT get at TJ Maxx:

  1. Hair products
  2. Headphones, electronics
  3. Sometimes candy
  4. Sometimes perfume

Also, historically I have been super wary of makeup/skincare from TJ Maxx. I always see brands like Elizabeth Arden, Shiseido and Bliss but more recently they’ve added Estee Lauder, Clinique, Bobbi Brown, Erno Lazlo etc. And when a Clinique eye serum is selling for $16.99 I always wonder…what’s the catch?

Is it expired? Discontinued? Is it from a bad batch? In my wildest fantasies, these products are all just overstock, fresh and just a SWEET DEAL. But then I wonder why errrone isn’t snapping these things up right and left.

Needless to say, I rarely buy anything from the bath & body section of T.J Maxx except the odd hand soap, Body Shop Body Butter or nail polish. I am scared to death of wasting my money on products that simply don’t work.

So the other day at lunch when I spotted two lowly GIANT bottles of St.Tropez Dark Tanning Mousse  for $14.99, just in time for our trip to Hawaii – I squealed inside my mouth a little. I inspected the bottle from top to bottom, looking for signs it had been in a fire, damaged or used, to no avail. I even googled all the random numbers on the bottom of the bottle to see if anything fishy turned up. Nothin.

So I bought ‘er and took ‘er home.

The next day, I took a pre- self tanner shower (exfoliated, scrubbed, etc) and excitedly jumped out in anticipation of applying my new tan! I shook it up generously and pumped it out into my tanning mitt.

It. Was. GREEN.

Just, completely Shrek green.

I know lots of self tanners have an olive undertone so I wasn’t that surprised and thought maybe this was just the color of the product, not the tan. So I rubbed a tiny bit into my forearm and it dried just straight-up green. Then I google imaged the product to see what color it is supposed to be…

Definitely NOT green!

I figure it must have just been expired. So. Yeah. I wiped the green right off my arm and plopped the bottle back in the T.J Maxx bag  to be returned. I guess the moral of this story is…

Do not buy tanning products from T.J Maxx 🙂

Mardi Gras. Mixed CD’s. Misc Mischief.

Hey there Jujubees!

I have a lot to get through today so I’m diving right in here!

A few weeks ago, David, his cousin Jackie, Grandma Rosalie and I went to an auction for her synagogue that had a Mardi Gras theme. I did green, purple and gold eye shadow but failed to get a good pic of it like a nincompoop.

Also, David booked us all a trip to Hawaii for the end of March which I must remember to start drinking Slim Fast for.

I even drew a palm tree to commemorate in my 2017 Hello Kitty day planner.

David and I went to a Blazers game vs. OKC and they won! Suck it Russell Westbrook.

those eyes tho

I used the H&M eyelashes for a date night/night out that I hauled in this post and was pleasantly surprised!

Annnnd, I wore a slightly tramp-ish dress with knee high boots and was all “I am woman, hear me roar!”

Then last weekend, I drove home to see my Mom, Meg and of course my baby Tate.

I discovered this in the CD case in my car (yes, like in High School) behind another CD and of course listened to the whole thing on the way to Kennewick. Lots of Blink 182, some Mandy Moore. you know.

All that one can get with him anymore is blurry pictures. The little meatloaf is so wiggly and fast.

But really, Tate is the absolute love of my life. I would do anything for him.

We got to do lots of fun things, such as…

Going for Fro yo!

Shopping at Target

Going to the park!

The Mickey hoodie slaaaays me

And of course, we spent lots of time hanging at Nana’s, watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (his FAVORITE).

My Mom is also making everyone matching stocking for Christmas and aren’t they so cute?

She also hand-stitched this little easter egg ornament which she gave to me. I told her I’m opening her up an Etsy store and we’re both going to be rich! muaahaahahaaa

While at Columbia Center, I hit a jackpot of a sale at Gymboree for E and got her a bunch of awesome summer stuff for Hawaii including these flops which are to die.

And I cooked her up the best pancake art I am capable of.

Yes, we have a full set of four of these Hello Kitty placemats

And lastly, my Dad Gary Danielson was on the Variety Telethon in Des Moines. He is a celebrity. And I am his daughter. I’m not sure, but I think this makes us Kardashians now.


Snowshoeing Suckiness

I feel like this time of year is just…sucky.

There’s taxes.

The weather.

It’s just the WORST.

And speaking of taxes, I did mine this year all by myself using free Turbo Tax and it was actually really easy. I am pretty sure I messed up a couple times, but like is the IRS really gonna audit little ol’ me? (KNOCK ON WOOD)

But here is another sucky thing…Snowshoeing (and Cross Country Skiing Skiers)

A couple weekends ago, I tried my hand (or should I say feet haha) at snow shoeing with my best buds Kelly and Olga. We were in Bend for a company ski trip and the three of us decided to rent snowshoes and give ‘er a whirl.

Turns out the route we were on was also used for cross country skiers and there also happened to be a cross country race that day.

To anyone who enjoys either of these sports, riddle me this: HOW?

I don’t understand what is remotely “fun” about either of these “sports”. Tromping around in the snow wearing heavy, water-proof snow gear while sweating heavily and fogging up your sunglasses is NOT my idea of fun. If I am going to exercise, I will go for a run or go to the gym or evvven hike if pressured. But to purposely go out in big ol’ ski clothes and attempt even the smallest incline, just heyll nah.

And don’t get me started on cross-country skiers.

“It’d be awesome if you girls could stay to the right and off of the tracks!”, “Can you get off of our tracks?!”, “ON YOUR LEFT! ON YOUR LEEEEEEEFT!”

I could have killed. them. all.

the only reason there are smiles in this picture was because we knew burgers were in our future

So, like yeah. I guess it was a pretty day.

this is my “tolerating it” face. notice kelly all adorbs in the background while I’m in one of David’s 11 year old hangy Old Navy thermals…

So, in conclusion let me be clear about a couple of things. I do not like snowshoeing. And I reallllly don’t like cross-country skiers.

Testing Charcoal Toothpaste

Hi bunnies!

So apropos right? Easter being around the corner.

About a month ago, David turns to me while we’re watching Shameless and admits, “I bought some black charcoal toothpaste from Asia today”. Cool buddy ;).

But really, I got kinda excited because white teeth just happen to be something I pride myself on.  And come on, charcoal ANYTHING is just blowing up right now. People are smearing it on their faces, brushing their teeth with it. Probably making charcoal + jelly sandwiches.

So when it arrived in the mail a few weeks later, I was really excited to get brushin’.

Looove the packaging too!


So we took before and after photos because I have a beauty blog and also because we genuinely wanted to see results after one use.

So here’s our befores:



Annnnd the afters:



So yeah. Not WORLD’S whiter. But I see a little difference! We are both going to continue using it and I’ll do updates in maybe a month so we can BLIND you. Haha.

Have a good one kiddies.