Lost & Fawned

reviews

Spring 2014 Book Duo via Lost and FawnedLooking for something new to read?  So was I.  I was feeling overwhelmed by my choices so I consulted the experts and asked a local librarian.  I told her the titles of the last 3 books I loved and she gave me a short list of recommendations.  I’m a quarter of the way through my first pick and I’m so pleased.  The librarian nailed it.

  • The Flight of Gemma Hardy by Margot Livesey
  • Longbourn by Jo Baker

Both of these harken back to classics.  The Flight of Gemma Hardy is a retelling of Jane Eyre set in 1950-60′s Iceland and Scotland.  Even though I know what should happen next, I’ve been plowing through it.  Next on my list is Longbourn, which tells the imagined tales of the servants working for the Bennet family.  Kind of a mash-up of Austin with Downton Abbey.

If neither of these peek your interest, visit your library branch and chat with a librarian.  I’d love to know what they recommend for you!  Hopefully soon the weather will be nice enough to take my new books to the park and read in the fresh, spring air.

 

Dog City and Co on Lost and Fawned

We love our dogs.  I’m not sure of a better feeling than coming home to the joy and unconditional love they give.  Logan and Finn make us laugh every day.  That’s why I’m ecstatic to share Dog City & Co. with you today.  Dog City & Co. makes adorable graphic dog inspired goods like pillows, t-shirts, printed wall art, mugs, tanks and more.  Not only are their products adorable, but they also help raise money for underfunded shelters by partnering them to create their own branded products.  Additionally, a portion of every sale is donated to shelters and rescues.

Dog City & Co. contacted me after seeing us blog about our two handsome boys and wanted me to try out and share a couple of their products with you.

When I saw this Rules of the House Pillow I knew it needed to be in our new armchair (which Finn has already declared is his when we watch movies in the living room).  It’s beautifully made and totally chronicles how we ended up at this point.  I selected the 10″ version since I already have a lot of 16″ pillows.

Dog City and Co

House Rules Pillow by Dog City and Co.

While I was taking these photos, this was happening on the sofa behind me…

Our dogs rule the house

The dogs rule our house.  Clearly this pillow is made for us.

We also got to try out one of their signature word totes.  Since both of our boys are mutts, I went for the all encompassing Dog Tote instead of one of the adorable breed specific totes.  This tote is huge!  Logan (reluctantly sitting in for a size comparison) is a big boy and this tote carries everything they need for a weekend at the babysitters and more.  I used it all weekend while running errands to the used book sale, library and market.  Plus, it’s beautifully constructed.  It’s made of nice high quality canvas and strong cotton straps.

Dog CIty and Co Tote

Logan loves our Dog CIty and Co tote bag

Dog City and Co Bag

One of their coolest features is their Custom Options.  If you have a mutt or an unusual breed, you can send them a photo, describe your dogs personality, pick a color scheme and they will custom design a product just for you or your loved one!

Win a Dog City and Co. ToteThanks to Dog City & Co. you can win your own tote!  The winner will get to pick their favorite tote.  Use the widget below to enter (if you can’t see the widget, please click here to visit the post).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway will end on Friday, October 18th.  Remember you can tweet the giveaway once per day for additional entries!  Good luck!

I was provided with sample product from Dog City & Co. to provide you with a thorough and honest review.  I was not otherwise compensated for this post and all opinions expressed are truthful and my own.

Review of I Promise Not to Suffer

2,663 miles. That is the length of the full Pacific Crest Trail. It stretches all the way from the Mexican border to the Canadian border. Every year, hundreds of people start the trek in spring in hopes that they will make it to Canada before winter. Could you spend 6 months in the wilderness, hiking 20+ miles per day and living off of only what you could carry on your back? Would you do it if it was your significant other’s dream? Gail Storey did, and she survived to tell her tale in I Promise Not to Suffer: A Fool for Love Hikes the Pacific Crest Trail.

I’ll preface this by saying this isn’t my usual book genre of choice.  I’m usually more of a classics or historic fiction girl (with the occasional biography thrown in). But, we love to backpack and one of my siblings has been planning on hiking the PCT so I Promise Not to Suffer was immediately appealing to me. It’s the perfect length for a plane ride or road trip (about 200 pages of actual story and about 10 pages of reference and equipment lists at the end). Perfect if you are planning a 3 day weekend for Labor Day.

I Promise Not to Suffer is about backpacking. But I found it to be just as much about love, marriage, inner strength, growth, discovery and the power of nature.  Jared is not much of a reader himself, but I found myself updating him at the dinner table on their progress along the trail as if they were a close friend. I rooted for Gail when she questioned herself, and found myself wondering if I would be strong enough (physically and emotionally) to thru-hike the PCT myself.

I Promise Not to Suffer - A Review

By the end I wasn’t sure if I was ready to sell everything and head west to do the PCT or if the idea of it terrified me (maybe a little of both).  Whether you are an experienced hiker or someone who has never set foot outside of a city, you can probably relate to Gail at some point during the book.  She wasn’t always so keen on backpacking.  I am glad I was given the opportunity to read this book and share it with you.  I have a feeling this wont stay on my shelf long, I can think of a few people I would like to pass it to so they can enjoy it.

I Promise Not to Suffer: A Fool for Love Hikes the Pacific Crest Trail by Gail Storey is available on Amazon and in most (if not all) e-reader formats (including Kindle and in the Ipad iBook store).

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Read Watch Listen - Lost and Fawned

Here come some new media recommendations.  Whether you prefer to read, watch or listen (or all three!), I have some new recommendations for you.

  • READ  //  The White Princess by Philipa Gregory  -  Philipa Gregory’s historic fiction novels have been my guilty pleasure books for awhile.  Recently I finished The White Queen and HAD to know what happened next.  Lucky for me, she already had a sequel on the way.  It just came out and it’s next in my stack.  I know I won’t be disappointed.
  • WATCH  //  Orange is the New Black on Netflix  -  We don’t have cable so I’ve been really happy to see Netflix turning out some original content (Yay Arrested Development!!).  Their newest series, Orange is the New Black has been a winner for us.  We loved Weeds, so we didn’t need much convincing to try this series.  We are only a few episodes in but we’re already hooked.  And since it’s on Netflix, you get a whole season at once to watch at your own pace!  It’s not for kids for sure, so make sure they are tucked into bed.
  • LISTEN  //  The Lumineers  -  The perfect album to wrap up my summer.  Their self titled album is a light blend of folk/rock/indie.  It’s one of my go-to albums for summer drives and for cleaning the house with the windows open.

Any recommendations for me?  Have you tried any of these?  Love?  Hate?

 

Neuro BLISS and Tell

It’s been a stressful year.  Probably the most stressful so far.  On top of dealing with a lot of personal struggles, I’ve been super busy.  If at all possible, I try to find at least 15 minutes a day (in the evening before bed, in the afternoon after work, or in the morning on weekends before the boys wake up) to do something just for me.  Maybe I spend the night in and put on a soothing skin mask, watch one of my favorite guilty pleasure movies (I’m looking at you The Devil Wears Prada) and give myself a pedicure.  Or just spend 15 minutes on the sofa with a dog and a good book or new magazine.

Instead of reaching for a comfort food, this week I gave something new a try.  neuro BLISS is a deliciously fruity beverage.  It’s a blend of citrus and tropical lychee and is lightly carbonated.  It also contains a smart blend of chamomile, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants including L-theanine, an amino acid found in green tea which has been found to reduce stress, produce relaxation and enhance focus.  Neuro drinks contain no artificial colors or flavors and are a guilt-free 35 calories per bottle.

My Blissful Moment

Enjoying my Blissful Moment

Recently neuro did a study of a large chunk of consumers.  More than half revealed they spend at least half their daily lives feeling stressed out.  Additionally about 89% said a night out did NOT help relieve their stress.  Check out some of the other data collected in the infograph below…

NeuroBLISS Stress Study

Give neuro BLISS a try and take $1 off!  Print the coupon by using the widget below to print your coupon and visiting Target, Walgreens, 7-11, Safeway or using this store locator to find your nearest distributor of neuro drinks.

Then share your BLISSful moment on instagram or twitter and enter to win a $10,000 dream vacation!  For more details on how to enter and official rules visit neuro BLISS.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Undercover Color with Hanes

Hanes is turning up the volume this season with vibrant new colors and patterns!  I adore color and love to mix unexpected pops of color into my outfits.  A great way to do that, is through Hanes bras, panties and tees!

Hanes is asking women, like you, what their #underovercolor is.  Add a pop of color to your outfit that only you (and perhaps another lucky person) know about.  Who says your undies have to match your outfit?  Why not sport purple polka dot panties under your work attire?  Or a neon blue bandini bra while you work out?  How about some pretty pink boy shorts under a date night look?

Pink is my Hanes Undercover Color

Pink

My Hanes panty #Undercovercolor is pink!  Flirty, feminine and fierce!  Find out what your undercover color is and share it with the #undercovercolor hashtag on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook!

Undercover Color with Hanes - Purple

Hanes has been tried, true and trusted for years and you know you are going to get great quality and comfort, and now you can get it in brilliant new color!  There is a size and fit for every woman’s mood and occasion.  They come in super affordable packs that leave you feeling guilt free.  Their collection of patterns and colors is nearly endless!

Hanes Bandini Bras

I’m in love with the Bandini Bra.  I wear it as a bandeau with strappy sundresses or with the straps while working out or under a tee.  They give the right amount of support and shape but dont pinch or poke.  The foam padded Bandini smooths everything out without looking overly padded.  I want one of these in every color!  I love the neons.  I even let the straps show a little under a slouchy sweater while running errands.

Hanes Undercover Color - Pink

A girl can never have too many colorful and comfortable tees.  They are great to pair with jeans, to work out in or a flirty patterned skirt with a bold necklace.  The Live.Love.Color Tee from Hanes is perfect all year long.

So be bold with Hanes and share your #UndercoverColor with the world!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

My Favorite Apps

Like many bloggers, I love technology.  Healthy or not, when I’m home I either have my phone in my pocket or my Ipad close by.  I’m an app addict and I’m constantly trying new ones.  I wanted to share four of my favorites with you today.  These four apps have made it through my critical delete finger and proven themselves time and time again.

Favorite Food App - Jamie Oliver

Jamie Oliver Recipes  //  There are a TON of food apps out there and most of them are pretty “meh”.  I love Jamie Oliver’s books, so when I saw he had a recipe app I had to have it.  This app is subscription based (pay per month), but it’s totally worth it.  It includes access to a growing library of beautiful and delicious recipes with step-by-step pictorial instructions.  It also includes access to a library of videos from Jamie and his team to walk you through culinary basics, like poaching the perfect egg, knife skills and buying meat.  I’ve found this app to be extremely helpful and valuable.

Favorite Photo App - Afterlight

Afterlight  //  I’ve tried dozens of photo apps.  Most are pretty much the same.  But Afterlight has become my go-to app to edit photos from Instagram and even some for the blog.  The filter library is extensive and gorgeous.  Filters range from very subtle to extreme.  All are adjustable and you can also manually edit photos.  It also come with plenty of light leaks and scratchy textures and tons of frames and shapes.  By far the best photo editing app I have tried.  Best .99 I’ve spent in a long time!

Favorite Fashion App

Poshmark  //  This app has been my best kept fashion secret for awhile, but now I’m sharing it with all of you!  Poshmark is a Iphone/Ipad app (coming soon to other platforms!) where you can not only buy gently used or new clothing and accessories from women like you, BUT you can also sell your unworn or gently used clothes easily and safely.

I bought a ton of professional pencil skirts and button downs when I graduated from college.  My life has taken a more casual turn since then and those skirts have been hanging in my closet for years with the tags still on.  When I downloaded Poshmark I was able to find new homes for those skirts quickly and earned some cash to buy new clothes I love and wear constantly!  Shipping is easy and safe.  Poshmark takes a 20% commission from each purchase, leaving you with 80% of the sale.

Joining Poshmark?  Use this referral code (HSLPZ ) when you create your account and get $5 credit instantly to use on your first purchase!

Favorite Fun Apps - Dumb Ways to Die

Dumb Ways to Die  //  Remember the Dumb Ways to Die PSA from Melbourne’s Metro Train?  They have an app now with tons of mini games inspired by the video!  It’s a simple little app that’s easy to pick up when you have 5 minutes to kill.  Jared and I spent half an hour passing it back and forth trying to top each others score the other night.  It’s a little dark (like the video) but it’s hilarious and adorable.  Plus it’s FREE!  So why not give it a go?

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I hope you find some of these helpful too!  What apps do you use constantly?  Any new discoveries?  Please share! and discuss!

Leonisa Ruffled Black Swimsuit

Confession time.  I haven’t bought a swimsuit in 8 years.  I hate the process of going into the stores and trying things on.  And I never find anything that makes me feel good.  This year I’ve been dealing with a little quarter-life body crisis.  My weight has been redistributing and settling in new places.  It’s fine.  I just dont know how to dress myself some days.  I wasn’t planning on buying a suit this year, but when Leonisa approached me about giving them a try, I figured “what the heck”.

I really wanted a good basic.  Something I could wear to the beach or the pool that was simple, slimming and provided me with coverage, while still having some style and feeling young.  I went with this one-piece with ruffled detail and open back.  Their website is great.  I took measurements and used their sizing guide to find the right fit (and I’m glad I did!  Had I gone with my first guess, I would have purchased the wrong size!).

Leonisa Ruffled One Piece with Tummy Control

It arrived on my doorstep super fast and I actually couldn’t wait to try it on.  It fits like a glove!  The measurement charts on the website were totally accurate.  It covers and controls areas I’m not super thrilled with right now, and shows off areas I love (like my back).  I love the keyhole detail in the front.  And the ruffles are great for girls who are less endowed like me.  I can tell it’s well made.  I feel super secure in it.  I’m really pleased!  I can see this being my favorite suit for years to come.  I actually feel good in it, something I never thought I’d say about a swimsuit.

Leonia Swimsuit Detail  Summer Swimsuit from Leonisa

I haven’t been to the lake yet, but I did wear the suit to wash the dogs.  It was very glamorous.

I’m not one to post photos of myself in a bathing suit, but you get one brave “selfie” after I gave the dogs a bath.  I do actually feel comfortable and confident enough in it that if I could I would post a full length photo modeling the suit, but this is the best I could do when I was home by myself.

Ruffled Swimsuit by Leonisa

Give Leonisa a try for yourself!  Get 10% off when you use this link.  They also have great lingerie and and shapewear.  There are so many suits, truly something for every body shape and size.  Make sure to take some current measurements and compare them to the size chart.

I was provided with a sample from Leonisa in order to write a through, accurate and honest review of their product.  All opinions expressed are my own and I stand by the products I endorse.

The Honest Company Laundry Pods

We are pretty choosy when it comes to products we use in our home.  I have sensitive skin and a sensitive nose (some fragrances give me major headaches) and we of course have dogs that lick EVERYTHING (floors, tables, stairs, walls, etc.).  We prefer to buy products that are gentle and natural but we also like them to work. 

The Honest Company offered to let me try a collection of their products so I could share them with you!  You know you are really a grown up when a new detergent makes you excited to do a load of laundry.  These pods get the job done without all the fragrances and chemicals that can irritate sensitive skin.  Plus they are so easy.  Clothes came out fresh and clean, what more can you ask for?

The Honest Company Natural Laundry

I also got to try a collection of their essential products, selected by moms and bloggers.  The samples included…

  • Healing Balm
  • Hand Soap
  • Face and Body Lotion
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Shampoo and Body Wash

Each and every one of these were very lightly and naturally scented.  All the bath products left me feeling fresh and clean.   I used the liquid detergent as a gentle spot cleaner on a skirt and it worked great!  Plus, the packaging is so cute.

You can get your own sample set from The Honest Company for just $5.95 for shipping (they also have baby sample packs including diapers and health supplement samples available).

A sample of products from the Honest Company

One of the big winners for me was the Healing Balm.  Since I often work with my hands, I’m constantly dealing with scrapes and cuts.  It’s also great for cuticles and feet.  I have even used it to sooth my super dry hands before bed.  Our attic bedroom can get pretty dry, so my skin is sometimes tight and irritated at night.  With the balm, my hands are smooth and soft when I wake up.

Healing Balm from the Honest Company

I was provided with samples from The Honest Company in order to provide a thorough and honest review of their products.  Some links may also result in commission based on sales.  Links like these help pay for hosting and other blog related costs on Lost & Fawned.

Grocery Treasures via Lost and Fawned

How about something a little different this week?  Usually I blog about beautiful handmade and indie finds, but most of my little treats actually come from the local grocery store!  Here are a few treasures we have discovered lately while picking up our weekly groceries.

Grocery Treasures on Lost and Fawned

  1. Bulls Eye Carolina Barbeque Sauce // We love barbecue.  And we have been hooked on Carolina style sauce.  I just made ribs with this sauce tonight and they were excellent!  A great way to mix up your summer barbeque.
  2. Nathan’s Famous Coney Island Mustard // I was craving a real mustard (not the neon yellow stuff) last summer and ended up taking home this bottle.  I love the simple ingredients and the flavor is classic.
  3. Essie Polish in Hip-Anema // My new signature nail color!  This is a little more of a splurge item, but it’s so worth it.  The color is gorgeous and it goes on so smooth (even for someone like me who is polish-challenged).
  4. Neutrogena Naturals Cleaner // I love the way this cleaner smells.  It’s just what I need at the end of a hot day to wash away a day of make-up and sweat.
  5. Herbal Essences Rose Hips Shampoo // Talk about flashback!  When I saw this nostalgic bottle on the shelf I HAD to take it home.  The scent takes me back to 8th grade!  Plus is makes my hair smooth and shiny.
  6. Blue Diamond Toasted Coconut Almonds // This was an impulse buy that paid off.  I was skeptical, but these almonds are like candy.  Sweet, toasty and warm.  And I don’t even particularly like coconut!
  7. Honey Bunches of Oats Fruit Blends // Honey Bunches of Oats is one of my favorite cereals.  And peaches and raspberries happen to be two of my very favorite summer flavors.  It’s like this cereal was made for me!
  8. The Kraken Spiced Rum // One of the more decadent purchases on this list but totally worth it.  It’s tasty and the bottle is a great conversation starter!  The new staple rum on our bar cart.


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