Why I don't care for your city: South Beach 2014 Ed. #travel

8.28.2014

*This post is inspired by my husband and I's favorite sports authority Deadspin's Drew Magary. He writes the infamous and utterly pee-worthy, "Why your team sucks" columns. In honor of today's post please enjoy "Why your team sucks 2013: Miami Dolphins" by Drew Magary. I will be sure to update the link to the 2014 post when it comes out.

 
Welcome to Miami. Prior to visiting South Beach, I had envisioned it as the Las Vegas of the South East. Visions of Will Smith's monster hit, "Welcome to Miami" playing through my head(click play for "false advertising" ambiance). My fantastical vision of hot bodies, celebrities, terrible plastic surgery, unmatched shopping, and world class dining experiences were "mouth a gapingly" obliterated. I have strolled in the exact location as "Big Willie Style" and somehow I feel utterly deceived. My husband and I did, however, have some fantastic meals! I will definitely give credit where credit is due, but South Beach is more like Baltimore by the ocean.

The Food is finger licking good in Miami. Yardbird is a must stop if you are in Miami. At Yardbird, you will find Southern staples of fried chicken with creative side dish compositions. The kale salad was smart and delicious. The mixed drinks are strong and the atmosphere is rustic, fresh, down home, and industrial. It feels like a trendy-southern joint. Perfectly suited to Miami. There is one other eatery that must be mentioned: CafĂ© Charlotte. A mix of Argentinian, Spanish, and Italian. Empanadas, skirt steak, and the house made ravioli were amazing! The atmosphere feels like Spain and the locals come in groves. You will not be disappointed at these eateries!

About the hobos. The hobos of South Beach are not afraid of any mere mortal. Soliciting is the Miami way of life. You are solicited for happy hour, rides, and by aggressive "no means yes" hobos. In fact, because "sweet-talking" any passing local or tourist is the Miami norm the hobos have to kick ass and take names. Otherwise, you would step on their unmentionables and keep on trucking. A truly fascinating hobo culture in South Beach.
 
The real letdown. My sweet la la land of Miami has been crushed. The shopping is ridiculously terrible. I went to more than three top-rated locations to include: The Miracle Mile, Collins Ave., and Ocean Drive. To hear the word "terrible" fall from my lips and onto this post crushes my soul in more ways than you can possibly imagine. Let me paint a Picasso for you. Miami's most predominant and supposedly most luxurious hot-spot shopping locations consist of a single Barney's of NY sandwiched between multiple 7-eleven's. Breath THAT in while watching penniless spiteful tweeners photographing themselves in front of "DASH". I may be poor, but at least I have my blue collar pride...dammit!

However, I did venture across a few boutique diamonds in the rough. These shops include Metta-loving Kindness(which is one of the only Eco clothing and accessory shops in Miami) and Roses and Dreams. Roses and Dreams is actually wafting of fresh roses when you walk in. They call themselves a French boutique, but I did note many Italian pieces in their clothing collections. Love it there.

In conclusion, I have truly learned my lesson about taking traveling advice from pop star music videos. Even if the always classy Will Smith is the involved aficionado. Peace out Miami.

Huge Skincando Giveaway! #AmericanMade

8.18.2014

*I was monetarily compensated to write this post. All words are my own.
WIN it all! Everything pictured. Pull up that jaw and enter below;-)

Skincando knows how to make effective all natural skincare. I am not just feeding you a marketing line*The sound of a fishing pool reeling*. I purchase Skincando products with my own monies, because I believe they are among the very best. This is coming from one picky Eco beauty aficionado. Today, I got some very exciting news from Sara Damelio(whom is the owner of Skincando). She is in the running to be a finalist for Martha Stewart's American Made Awards! How exciting is that!!!

Here's the deal. You help Skincando become a finalist by sharing the love and buzzing about her from Martha Stewart's American Made Awards page featuring Skincando. What do you get in return? Everything pictured. That's right the whole Combat-Ready line!
 
One winner will receive: CR Bar 4 oz., CR Lip Balm .15 oz., CR Bug Repellant 2.7 oz., CR Balm- travel .125 oz., CR Balm 2 oz., CR Balm 8 oz.

Good Luck and may Martha Stewart be with you!;) PS. Skincando is having a Friends + Family event going on now at skincando.com and everything is 20% off + free shipping.

How to make your own natural bath bombs #DIY

8.16.2014

"I truly believe that Cleopatra should have been bathing in honey, but I guess milk was a good start too." ~ Heather P.{me}
Prelude: How I failed and lessons learned. Learn from my mistakes and avoid using too much oil. Too much oil will weigh your bath bombs down and result in less spectacular fizzing. Perhaps it will even start the citric acid reaction and ruin your bath bombs altogether. Bath bombs are a finicky bunch. The surrounding air needs to be Ccool, dry, and not too humid. If you just cooked something in the kitchen, took a steamy hot shower, or it just rained outside then you might want to wait to make bath bombs another day. Humidity can cause your bath bombs citric acid reaction. Resulting in a sad bath bomb that doesn't fizzle. One last thing, after your make your bombs and sit them down do not move them for the first day. The bath bombs need to cure 2 to 3 days and are very fragile at this point. I know you want to touch them...just restrain yourself:)

Want a hard bath bomb? You need to introduce water or Organic witch hazel. Just substitute for the oil and you will have a rock hard bath bomb in a few days.
 
What you will need to make Bath Bombs:
     Makes 4 Bath Bombs
8 oz. Baking Soda
4 oz. Citric Acid
4 oz. Corn Starch
4 oz. Epsom or Sea Salts {FINE not coarse}
0.5 to 1 oz. oil of your choice {Coconut is my favorite}
5 to 10 gtt. of lavender and/or peppermint essential oils
2 to 3 tbsp. of dried lavender or peppermint is a nice addition{optional}
    Large metal or glass bowl
    Tbsp measuring spoon
    Large spoon
    Gloves or clean dry hands
    Mold{bath bomb or any mold you have on hand}


First things first. Take your dry ingredients{baking soda, corn starch, citric acid, and salts} and mix them together thoroughly. I like gloves. Feeling the texture is important. Break up any clumps you may feel with your finger tips.

Secondly. Combine your essential oils with your oil of choice. Take your oil and slowly drizzle a small amount of your oil onto your dry ingredients. Quickly and thoroughly mix. Clump the ingredients into your hand and bounce. Do the ingredients hold together? No. Add a tiny bit more oil. Yes. Then you are ready to mold.

Third times a charm. Work quickly. Take your mold and press your mixture in gently. Overfill slightly. The connecting ends should be crumbly NOT smooth and compact. Loose and crumbly will compact when pressed together. Smooth and compact will not. Gently press together.

Fourthly. Work to remove your bombs immediately. DO NOT twist. If your mixture is on point it should not take much effort to lift the mold from your bath bomb. Do not be surprised if you are repeating this step several times!

Fifth and last. Lightly mist your bath bombs with witch hazel or water for a harder bath bomb. A paper towel lined area will work just fine. You can also place paper towels on top of your bath bombs if desired. Now leave them alone. Let your bath bombs cure for 2 to 3 days. Afterwards, transfer to a cool and dry location.

Good luck and may the force be with you!


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