FabFitFun Spring 2018 Box

Thursday, March 15, 2018

It’s unboxing time! The Spring 2018 box is my 4th box from FabFitFun and the last from my year-long subscription. I still really love getting these every season, so I’ll probably sign up for another year when summer rolls around. Today I’m going to show you all of this season’s items. As I mentioned above, I signed up for a full year, so I’m considered a select member. That just means that I’m able to choose between colors/styles for a few of the items. The rest of the items are a surprise (although I’m terrible with surprises, so I always look for spoilers ahead of time). I love being able to pick my colors, but it’s fun to have a few surprises too.

*This post contains some affiliate links. I receive a small percentage of the purchase price at no additional cost to you. However, I paid for this box and subscription with my own money and this post is not sponsored.

This box didn’t seem to have a big ticket item like some of the previous boxes, but I think this reversible clutch from Rachel Pally ($60 value) was supposed to be the hot item. This was one of the select choices, so I was able to pick from 3 different colors/patterns. I picked the Bloom print, but there was also an orange floral option or aqua “paradise” print option. It’s cute and well-made, but I don’t see myself using it very much.

My other select choices were this Maya Brenner Designs “Love” bracelet ($65 value), KORRES Guava Body Butter ($24 value), and Anderson Lilley copper candle ($45 value). For the bracelet, select members were able to pick between the bracelet (available in 2 colors) or a pair of Ettika Day Dreamer Tassel Earrings (also available in 2 colors). The earrings were cute, but I have really sensitive ears so I probably wouldn’t have been able to wear them. The bracelet ended up being a great pick! It’s so cute and fits perfectly!

We were also able to pick between the body butter or KNC Beauty Lip Masks. I came SO close to ordering the lip mask because they’re something I’d NEVER buy for myself and that’s kind of the whole point of this box. But then I read a couple mediocre reviews about them in the forums and switched to the body butter. So far I really like the body butter. The scent is light and slightly fruity.

The Anderson Lilley candle was available in 3 different scents and I picked Fresh Linen. The other choices were Manhattan Beach or Super Bloom. I was a little nervous about the scent, but the candle smells amazing. It’s exactly that fresh scent that you would imagine linen to be.

These next two items came in different colors, but they weren’t part of the selection process, so they were a surprise for everyone. I love that this vegan leather Free People x Understated Leather Starry Eye Mask ($40 value) includes a cooling insert. It fits my face perfectly and really helped soothe a headache I had the other night.

The Physique 57 Massage Roller ($20 value) was available in multiple colors, but I ended up with a gray one. At first I wasn’t excited about this product because we already have a couple massage rollers that we don’t really use, but this one feels so good. The spiky balls almost feel like they are scratching your back and it feels amazing. I tried it on the dogs and Abby is obsessed…it’s seriously so cute. Ringo liked it too, but Jelly was too scared of it to enjoy it.

And finally, these last few items were sent to everyone. First the Dermelect Cosmeceuticals Makeover Concealing Ridge Filler ($18 value). I normally don’t like anything on my finger nails and pick off any polish, but I love this so far. It makes my nails shiny and a little shimmery, but it’s not thick like nail polish, so I’m not as tempted to pick at it.

The next item is the Murad Skin Perfecting Lotion ($40 value). I've been using it for the past few nights and I like it so far. My skin looks clear, but doesn't feel dry. And lastly, the ISH Lip Statement Palette ($42 value). I don’t wear a lot of lip color, but it’ll be fun to play around with different colors.  

We also received a sample of Dove Exfoliating Body Polish. It was a sponsored item, so it’s not included in the value of the box.

So that’s everything that was included in the Spring 2018 box. Overall I really liked this box, but I still think the Winter 2017 box is my favorite. Like I’ve said before, I wouldn’t have picked out any of these products on my own, but that’s the point of the box for me. My favorite items are the candle, sleep mask, and nail product. My box included $354 worth of products for only $45! I don’t think a lot of these items are actually worth the full price, but they are all definitely worth more than $45.

If you want to try FabFitFun, you can use this link and coupon code WELCOME10 to save $10 off your first box. If you don’t want to commit to a full year, you can sign up with that link for just one box, get everything for $40, and then cancel.

Do you subscribe to any subscription boxes? I’m still thinking about signing up for CauseBox. I don’t want to spend the extra money, but the boxes look so good. I’ll probably wait until all of the spoilers are out and decide then.


Raised Herb Garden

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

I planted an herb garden! This project was on my 30 for 30s list, fall to-do list, and 18 for 2018 list…needless to say, I’m thrilled to finally cross this project off my lists!

Back in May (yes, this took me almost a year to complete) I bought this raised planter from Amazon. It was only $27 and had amazing reviews, so I purchased it without much hesitation. Then it sat in the box, next to the front door for like 6 months…I’m not even exaggerating. Honestly, the only reason I finally put it together was because I was thinking about buying one for my mom for Christmas and I wanted to make sure it was nice enough to gift.  

*This post contains some affiliate links. I receive a small percentage of the purchase price at no additional cost to you.

The planter ended up being so easy to put together and it was really nice quality, but then it sat empty outside for another few months. In my defense, by then it was November and I wasn’t sure about planting herbs yet. Although I live in Phoenix and we don’t really get any frost, so it probably would have been fine, but let’s just stick with that excuse.

Finally last weekend I went to Home Depot and bought a bag of soil and 5 herb plants. I thought 7-8 herbs would work best in the planter, but the herb section was pretty picked out. Determined not to let this project sit unfinished for any more time, I went to another store and bought 2 more plants. I planted them the next day and spent the rest of the afternoon wondering why it took me so long to do this project in the first place.

This whole project (planter, soil, herbs, gnome) ended up being about $60, which is a killer deal if you’ve ever seen the price of other raised planters. Trust me, the price is cheap, but the planter is not. The plastic is thick and I can see it holding up for a long time. It also helped that the soil and herbs were on sale last week. If you want to save even more money, you could buy seeds instead of the plants. I don’t have enough patience for that, but I know some people enjoy starting with seeds.

If you do decide to transplant the herbs from the containers, remember to GENTLY loosen the soil before planting. You don’t want to tear the roots or have the whole plant fall apart, but you don’t want to just plant that hard ball of soil either. Also, remember that herbs like sunshine and need proper drainage.

I’m so excited to finally have my herb garden together! It’s so nice to have fresh herbs available without having to stop at the store.

Now I need to figure out what I want to do with our veggie garden this year…


Love Where You Live: Be a Tourist at Home

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Adam and I are going to Nashville in April, so I’m in serious planning and research mode right now. I know some people don’t like the planning part of traveling, but I LOVE it. Searching for activities and restaurant recommendations is so much fun to me, which works out well because my 2 usual travel buddies (Adam and my mom) are not into it at all. Anyway, my current planning mode has gotten me thinking about traveling in general.

I love to travel, but it’s just not possible to go as often as I’d like. I work full-time, so I only get a certain number of vacation days a year. Plus whenever we leave we have to find someone to watch the dogs…oh, and you know, money. So, I’m really starting to embrace the idea of being a tourist at home. 

I first got the idea from an episode of the Happier with Gretchen Rubin podcast. The ‘Try This at Home’ tip in episode 15 was to be a tourist at home and I thought it was genius. There are so many places in the Phoenix area that I’ve never been to, but if I were visiting the city, they would probably be on my itinerary. The weekend after listening to that episode Adam and I spent Saturday exploring Downtown Mesa and visiting the Arizona Museum of Natural History. It was such a fun day, but the idea kind of died out after that.

At the end of the year, for Adam’s birthday, I planned a Year of Dates gift and really took the opportunity to plan dates that involved visiting and exploring new places around Arizona. So far we’ve gone on a hot air balloon ride in North Phoenix, took a food tour in Old Town Scottsdale, and toured Wrigley Mansion in Phoenix. We’ve been having so much fun playing tourist lately, so today I want to share my tips for enjoying your own city.

1 | Create an itinerary
Let’s pretend that you’re really traveling to your city for a day/weekend, what would you plan? I like to start by searching for itineraries already posted online. I usually just google “3 days in _____” or “long weekend in ______” for my specific location. That’ll give you some great advice from Trip Advisor, blog posts, travel magazines, and other travel forums. I like to copy anything that sounds interesting in Word document and then see how often a suggestion comes up. If something sounds really interesting, I’ll search that specific activity and see if I can find out more details.

Then I just sort through all of the ideas and decide what’s a must do and what we’ll have time to do. I also like to group by location, so we don’t end up driving back and forth.

2 | Invite Guests
I think most of us only ever visit the tourist spots in our city when we have company. When we first moved to Arizona everyone that came to visit wanted to see the Grand Canyon. I think we went to the Grand Canyon like 5 times in the first couple years of living here. And honestly, I haven’t been back since. So if you need motivation to get out and explore, invite friends or family to come visit.

If you don’t have any guests coming anytime soon…or don’t want to bother entertaining guests (no judgement here), just pretend! Pretend you have family coming to visit, where would you take them? That question will give you a great starting point for your own tourist at home ideas.

3 | Organize a Year of Dates
Need more accountability? Plan a Year of Dates! Without the Year of Dates that I put together for Adam, we probably wouldn’t have gone on any of our adventures this year. I always have the best intentions of exploring, but I need something to hold me accountable and force me to call to make reservations. Plus it’s a great way to get someone else excited about being a tourist at home. It’s definitely easier to get someone to play tourist with you when it’s part of a gift vs. just a random suggestion to go horseback riding. Adam is pretty easy-going and is up for most things, but he would probably side-eye a couple of our activities if I just randomly planned them instead of being part of his gift. 

If you want to learn more about the Year of Dates idea, you can read all about it here. That post is full of fun date ideas and places to visit.

4 | Look for Deals
As a local, you might have more discounts available to you vs. a visitor. Some places give discounted tickets or offer reduced entrance fees with a local driver’s license. Another great resource is your local library. Our city library has a culture pass program that provides free entrance to two museums a month for 2 people. It looks like most of Arizona participates in that program and I found similar programs in other states when searching around. It’s definitely worth checking out! We’re planning on using this program to visit the Heard Museum for our May date and it’ll save us $36!

Playing tourist at home is such a fun way to learn more about your city. Regardless if you’ve lived somewhere for years or are a recent transplant, you’ll definitely learn something new about the place you call home. So if you’re feeling that itch to explore, consider being a tourist at home. It’s easier, cheaper, and more convenient that planning a full getaway. It’s also a fun date idea or a great way to spend the day with kids.

Do you ever play tourist in your city? What's your favorite place to visit in your area?

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