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    Christmas, Geekdom, Life, Personal, Wishlist

    My 2016 Christmas Wishlist

    My 2016 Christmas Wishlist
    I can’t believe it’s only three weeks until Christmas! I’ve already finished up most of my Christmas shopping which makes me realize I’m probably putting this post up a bit too late to genuinely be useful to anyone (sorry, family!) as they too have probably already finished up most of their shopping…although, to give myself some credit, I actually think this is the earliest in December I’ve posted my Christmas wishlist in the 5+ years I’ve had this blog.

    Yes, I think I’ve made a Christmas Wishlist every year since 2010 and even though I’m at the age now where if I really want something, I can just go out and get it for myself instead of hoping to find it under the tree from Santa (although those days were magical and Santa really did spoil me as a kid), I want to keep this post tradition going and share with you all what my personal wish list items are for Christmas (or otherwise)! 

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    Geek Fashion, Geekdom, Thanksgiving

    Black Friday and Cyber Monday Geek Deals

    Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals For Geeks and Cosplayers

    I know Black Friday can be pretty overwhelming trying to keep up with all the amazing sales out there. To help you out, I’ve rounded up all the best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals for geeks and cosplayers I could find in to one post.

    I did my best to keep everything up to date and I’ll continue to add as I find more awesome deals!

    Tip: For extra savings, be sure to use Ebates.com (referral link)! Sign up is FREE and many stores are doing DOUBLE cash back! So on top of whatever savings you’re already getting, you can get up to another 15% off!

    UPDATED 11/28 4:14AM

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    Halloween, Holidays, Life

    What I Did For Halloween

    What I Did For Halloween

    Can you believe that Halloween was exactly one week ago? I sure can’t! With all the Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations especially out in full force in every store, Halloween feels like a memory. Some may say that a week is too late for a Halloween recap but to them I say boo! (Get it, like a ghost?) Okay, so that was lame, but late or not, I wanted to share my Happy Halloween experience with you all along with some silly photos!

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    Halloween, Holidays

    5 Must See Halloween TV Episodes

    Halloween Must See TV Episodes
     
    Halloween isn’t until Monday, but many of us (myself included) will be celebrating it over the weekend. Come the actual day, I’ll most likely want to take it easy and celebrate it in a low key way… such as watching some of my favorite Halloween TV episodes while I stuff my face with candy corn. Why not a movie, you ask? I’ve never been big on Halloween movies (besides Nightmare Before Christmas and Disney’s old school Halloweentown) and there’s just something about doing a little marathon of different shows that I enjoy. So without further adieu, read on for my Top 5 Must See Halloween TV Episodes!

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    Birthdays, Geekdom, Wishlist

    My 27th Birthday Wishlist

    Nerdy Birthday Wishlist
    Less than 2 weeks until my 27th birthday?? Whaaa–?? Where has the year – no, YEARS gone?? I can barely wrap my head around the fact that I’m in my “mid-twenties” – it just seems too crazy! When did I become a “grown up?”

    Every year, the calendar indicates I get older, but I certainly don’t FEEL any older. Okay, my metabolism is pretty much shot and yeah, I’ve got a lot of health issues I’m dealing with but mentally I don’t feel older. Just check out the things on my birthday wishlist. ^^

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    Birthdays, Life, Local, Los Angeles, Personal

    My Sister’s Birthday!

    My sister, Melissa, had her 24th birthday this past week! The day was going to be just us, and I planned a whole itinerary with things for the two of us to do on her special day. I’ve been worried that with my health problems I wouldn’t be able to properly celebrate with her and do everything, but luckily the entire day went without a hitch and couldn’t have gone better!
     
     
    After letting her sleep in a bit (because that’s what you do on your birthday!), we went to Denny’s! You get a free Gland Slam Breakfast on your birthday so it’s become a bit of a tradition to start our birthdays off there. We also got the bacon cheddar tots which were delish! 
     
    Afterwards, we were ready for our spa appointment! I found this great place called Anatara on Yelp that had a great “couples massage” deal! We opted for a hot stone massage – something neither of us had ever had before and it was SO nice and relaxing! 
     
    Next up, was a manicure and pedicure at this SUPER cute nail salon called Polish Lounge. They had soooo many nail polishes! Melissa eventually chose two OPI colors that were very spring-y. I opted out of doing my own nails and instead walked over to nearby Starbucks and brought us both back our signature drinks (hers – an Iced Passion Tea Lemonade Sweetened, mine – a Butterbeer Frappacino) and two birthday cake pops. After Melissa had been thoroughly pamperred, we went home to get dressed for the evening and FaceTime our dad.
     
     
    For dinner, we went to Umami Burger and had our usual – the Truffle Burger and sweet potato fries. Our server, Marvin, was super cool and had a dessert (a deep fried ice cream sandwich called the “UFO”) brought out for us upon learning it was my sister’s birthday. This was something neither of us expected and was an awesome surprise. Also, SO yummy! Even after being filled with our burger, we devoured the whole thing!
     
    We ended the day going to Mosaic, her church, for their Midweek service where we bumped into our friends Chelsea and Sammy. The message was simple but uplifting and a great way to end the day 🙂
     
    How do you and your siblings celebrate each other’s birthdays?
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    Life, Personal, Travel, Valentine's Day

    Valentine’s Weekend in Yosemite ♥

     
    For our first Valentine’s Day together, my boyfriend, Luke, planned the most amazing weekend with our good friends Cori and Michael in Yosemite National Park! I had never been before and was totally blown away by the incredible beauty all around us. It is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. We all took lots of photos, but even the best pictures can’t beat experiencing it in person.
     
    We made the approximate 6 hour drive up north and arrived in Curry Village late Friday night where Luke had reserved us an awesome heated tent. I believe this is called “glamping” as we weren’t roughing it in a traditional sense as our “tent” did have an electrical heater, beds, and towels for the nearby showers. I enjoy regular camping but this was pretty great!

     
    Above is an inside look at our heated tent (from our last day after we had packed up) – I found it so cozy and the beds surprisingly comfortable! I slept SO well both nights!
     
    To not attract bears, they don’t allow cooking in the camp area so you have go offsite to make your meals and eat. Since we couldn’t find any fire pits, we used Luke’s cooking set and propane stove. Luke is pretty creative and resourceful when it comes to outdoor cooking and made the yummiest breakfast hash – it was so hearty and filling, perfect for jumpstarting our day.
     
     
     I was really excited about the day’s Yosemite Falls hike but I also have some health issues that make strenuous activities difficult so I was a bit worried I would hold us back. What was so wonderful was that I ended up surprising both Luke and myself and made it much farther than either of us could’ve guessed. We did have to take several breaks but I was so proud of myself for not giving up – and my perseverance paid off as I got to see some incredible views.

    One of my favorite moments from the whole trip was coming around this big rock during our hike and suddenly right in front of us – the most gorgeous waterfall complete with accompanying rainbow reveals itself. It was simply breathtaking. Just like the rest of Yosemite, photos don’t do it justice. 

     
     
    We climbed up some rocks to get away from all the other hikers and found a nice somewhat secluded area to have lunch and enjoy the sight of the waterfall. Definitely a highlight.
     
     
    Once the sun started going down, we made our way back and found our friends Cori and Michael and decided to take a few “couple” photos of each other on this cliff overlooking this incredible view. Since Luke and I both wore red plaid, our photos ended up looking like the most “epic Brawny ads.” Haha I loved it.

    The next day, traffic was a MESS – literally bumper to bumper (I thought we had left LA!). With so many people trying to leave the camp area, we decided to scratch our hiking plans and just walk around and explore the areas nearby which included this big open snowy plain where I had my first legitimate snowball fight and took some pretty awesome photos. I just can’t get over how beautiful the scenery is.
     
     
    After our fun in the snow, we took an indoor break for lunch and played a game of Settlers of Catan. I had a bit of a rough start but was just making a comeback (I’m Orange) when Luke won and ended the game. Anyone else love Settlers?
     
     
    Traffic hadn’t let up at all so it was back to exploring! We followed a trail farther into the woods and came across some firepits (at least we now know for our next trip!) and a river that made for more lovely photos. Cori took the beautiful photos below.

     
     Before we knew it, it was growing dark. Luke took some gorgeous night shots with his camera as we made walked back and by the time we reached our car, traffic was gone (yay!) and it was time to drive back home.
     
     
    Such a wonderful trip. Despite not feeling my best at times, I loved every moment of it and can’t wait to go back. Be sure to check out the awesome video Michael made of our trip! 
     

    Video credit: Michael HDZ of Fervent Creative
    Have you ever been to Yosemite? Gone “glamping”? Where did you stay? What hike or activity should I do on my next trip? 

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    Holidays, Life, Personal, Travel

    My New Year’s Eve

    My New Year’s Eve consisted of lots and lots of flying. My original flight from Orlando to Boise on December 30th was canceled and had to be rebooked the next day early in the morning – then I got an announcement at 1:30am that that flight was delayed by 9 hours, which means I would miss my connecting flight and, thus, also had to be rebooked…but being New Year’s Eve, of course, almost everything was completely booked up. Luckily, around 4am I finally found a flight that could get me to Boise around 10pm (praise God!). It would be cutting it close to midnight and really messed up plans, but at least Luke and I would get to see the new year in together.

    All aboard! The tiny plane that finally took me to Boise!
    I was exhausted after getting off the plane in Boise, but the moment I saw Luke and ran into his arms, I knew it was all worth it. Ten days is the longest we’ve ever been apart since dating and I hope we aren’t that long apart again for a very long time.
    Unfortunately, Luke had a case of food poisoning earlier that day and still wasn’t feeling too well which made our plans to go downtown to see the annual Potato Drop (we’re in Idaho) not look so good. I really wasn’t too disappointed and I honestly really didn’t care what we did that night as long as I was with him.
    After deciding we would just stay in that night, I started to eat some late night dinner when Luke tells me to throw on my coat – we actually ARE going out! It was 11:48! His dad drove us downtown towards the capitol building but traffic jammed up so Luke grabbed my hand and we bolted out of the car and started running with just 2 minutes till midnight. 
    The Potato Drop-ped! In front of the Boise capitol building minutes after midnight.

    Out of breath, we literally arrived just as they were counting down. Before I knew it, that big potato dropped from the sky, fireworks were going off, and I was kissing the man of my dreams and the happiest girl in the world. That’s I how I ended 2015 and began 2016 <3

    How was your New Year’s Eve?

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    Beauty, Christmas, Get Ready With Me, Makeup, Tutorials

    My Christmas Makeup Look

    As far as holiday makeup goes, I kept my Christmas makeup this year rather light. With the outfit I planned to wear, I knew I wanted to bust out a bold red lip. I love smokey eyes and winged eyeliner, but decided to keep my eyes neutral and instead opted for strong brows to balance out the lips. Since there was little eye work, this look took less than 10 minutes to complete.

    Face

     

    I first prepped my face all over with Olay Complete All Day Moisturizer and my new Urban Decay Pore Perfecting Complexion Primer Potion. For foundation, I applied Revlon’s Nearly Naked in Fresh Beige with a Beauty Blender. Then I used my Bobbi Brown Corrector in Light to Medium Bisque to cover up my dark eye circles (because boy do I have them). Next, I applied Maybelline’s Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer in Brightener along the bridge of my nose, my chin, under my eyes, and the area above the middle of my brows (see photo below) for some highlighting/concealing/contouring. I skipped powder and bronzer and just applied Maybelline’s Master Glaze in Make A Mauve lightly on my upper cheekbones blending it downwards with my fingers. To finish up my face, I used a dense brush to apply the balm’s Mary-Lou Manizer above my cheekbones, along the bridge of my nose, and my cupid’s bow.


    Eyes
    As I mentioned, eyes were very simple. I curled the lashes first then applied Maybelline’s Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze with my fingers all over my lid up to the brow bone. Using the Mary-Lou Manizer again, I swept it along the brow bone and the inner corners of the eyes. Finally, I applied my current go-to mascara Covergirl’s The Super Sizer in Black. Moving upwards, I used my trusty Anastasia Brow Powder Duo in Brunette to neatly shape and fill in my brows. I mostly use the lighter color, but will use the darker along the outer areas for a sharper line. Once I’m done, I set it with Anastasia’s Clear Brow Gel to keep everything in place.

     
    Lips
    Bold lips are great during the holidays, but they take a little prep work if you want to make sure they last through all the yummy dinner foods and desserts. I outlined my lips with Urban Decay’s 27/4 Glide-On Lip Pencil in Ozone then filled them in. This stuff is great at preventing feathering and helping your lip color last. Even though it does everything a lip liner does, I still decide to use my NYX Lip Liner Pencil in Cabaret (I just like how it looks with the lipstick) – I once again outline my lips then fill them in completely. Once done, I apply my Rimmel Lasting Finish by Kate lipstick in 107 in then finish the look with Nars Larger Than Life Lip Gloss in Place Vendome.

     
    There you have it! My “simple” Christmas makeup look this year!
     
    Did you rock a bold lip this Christmas?

    Blog Hops: Hello Monday, Makeup Monday, Mingle Monday
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