Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Spring Morning Routine + Instagram GIVEAWAY

Hi lovely people! For today's post, I'm going to share my current morning routine. It's changed quite a bit since my last one that I did, so I thought I'd share it with you! I think I got some of my blogging inspiration back, and I have a few posts (and videos!) in mind. It seems like Wednesday's and Friday's work for me best, but I'm keeping an open mind to Tuesday's and Tuesday's as well. For now I'm trying to post twice a week, so sometime between Tuesday-Friday I should show up on your blog news feed!

Before I get into my morning routine, I wanted to let you all know that I'm doing a giveaway right now on my Instagram page for my Etsy Shop! ((@moonelements)).  I'm giving away a necklace from my shop, which is a quartz crystal with a crescent moon crescent moon  on it! I'd love for you all to enter! You can check out my post on Instagram for more details!  If you leave a comment on this blog post saying you are entering, I'll give you a bonus entry!
I don't have a set time where I wake up in the morning. Being able to work from home, I'm fortunate to be able to let myself wake up when my body wants to, and not half to set an alarm. I like to lay in bed for a few and wake up, cuddle with my fur balls, etc. before getting up. Another thing I like to do that is not pictured is to drink a big glass of water or herbal tea when I first wake up.

After I wake up, I wash my face and do my morning skin care routine, brush my teeth, all that good stuff. My skin care for the morning just consists of my Lush Coal Face, Thayer's Rose Petal Witch Hazel, and Lush Celestial Moisturizer. I will do a post on my nighttime skincare routine soon!

Next if I'm hungry, I'll eat some breakfast. Which is usually some kind of fruit, a smoothie, or some oatmeal. This day I made oatmeal, and loaded it up with some goodies. I added in a chopped apple, some raisins, some chia seeds, and some hemp seeds.

After I finish breakfast I get ready for the day. Sometimes I don't get ready, it just depends on what  I'm doing that day. Here is some makeup that's currently in my routine!

Then I get to work! I've been working hard on my Etsy shop, so I've been on my computer almost non stop. I also bought a planner, and each day I check out what's going on, what I have to do, and add in anything I need to for the upcoming days. My planner is super simple, but anyone wants to see a planner post from me, let me know! I created my own cover for it and decorate the inside a little bit!

And that pretty much is what fills up my morning and afternoon! Some days I don't work as much if I have errands to run like grocery shopping, sending out packaging, or sneaking in some World of Warcraft playtime ;).

What does your morning routine look like? Share it with me in the comments! And don't forgot to enter my MoonElements Instagram Giveaway!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Foodie Friday | 3 Easy Dinner Recipes

Happy Friday friends!

Before we get into today's 'Foodie Friday' post, I wanted to thank everyone for their kind words, congratulations, and encouragement in this post where I talked about opening my own Etsy shop! It means the world to me, and another huge thank you to everyone who made purchases! If you haven't already, you can check out my shop HERE.

Now for today's post! I haven't done a Foodie post in a while, and today I'm sharing 3 Easy Dinner Recipes that I've been loving and that are a staple on my house! Also, I eat very plant based, but just remember that if you choose to eat meat, then any of these recipes are super easy to add your favorite meat into!

Street Corn Tostadas with Cilantro Lime Rice

I have Carah Amelie on YouTube to thank for this recipe! It is ridiculously amazing and it's my absolute favorite recipe right now!

What you'll need
-1 can of corn (you can use frozen or Fresh if you like)
- 1 can of refried beans
-Chopped Onion
-Chopped Cilantro
-Chopped Avocado (1 whole)
-Mayo (vegan or non vegan)
-Chili Powder
-Tortillas or Tostada shells
-Lime juice
-Taco seasoning

-Cook your corn, and chop veggies while it cooks
-Put cooked corn, onion, cilantro, avocado, and spices into a bowl. Add in some lime juice and mayo to taste and mix it all up.
-If you need to fry your tortilla, add some oil into a pan and do so. This is what I did, my grocery store didn't have any Tostada shells, but they were super yummy fried up!
-Spread some beans onto the Toastada and top with corn mixture.
*Also in Carahs video, she added Queso Fresca cheese and sour cream into the mixture. Do so if you like, although the recipe was very yummy without it!*

The rice is super simple! Cook up some white rice, once its finish add in cilantro, lime juice, and taco seasoning.
I also didn't have an exact measurement for the onions, cilantro, or mayo. I just added in how much I thought it needed. You could also add things like black beans, chopped peppers, lettuce etc. to this, or leave out any of the ingredients that I listed if you don't like them!

Loaded Veggie Pasta
This recipe I have Liv's Healthy Life  on Youtube to thank for, and it is also so freaking good as well!

What you'll need
-Pasta of your choice (I use speghetti noodles, but this is super good with tortellini too!)
-One 14 oz can of tomato sauce
-One tablespoon of Tahini (this seriously makes the pasta dish!)
-Parmasen Cheese or Nutritional Yeast
-1 tsp of Cane or Coconut Sugar
-Spinach and other veggies of your choice (I used carrots, zucchini, and bell peppers)
-1 cup milk of your choice (I used rice milk)

-Boil pasta
-Stir fry your veggies (all but spinach) and add salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning to taste
-Once veggies are cooked, add in the cane of tomato sauce, tablespoon of tahini, tsp of sugar, tablespoon of parmasen cheese, and milk of your choice
-Once the sauce cooks for a few minutes with the veggies, add in spinach. Cook for a few more minutes until it wilts. Add in pasta.

This is super easy to make, and the sauce is amazing. The Tahini and sugar sound like a weird thing to add to tomato sauce, but trust me, those added with the milk make the sauce so creamy and rich!

Stir Fry with Spicy Honey Tofu and Homemade Spring Rolls 

What you'll need
-A block of extra firm tofu
-Soy sauce
-Rice wine vinegar
-Teriyaki sauce
-Red Pepper Flakes
-salt and pepper

-First cut tofu into cubes, add into a bowl with 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tbsp teriyaki sauce, 1 tbsp honey, 1 tsp red pepper flakes, 1 tsp rice wine vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Marinate for at least 15 minutes. Bake in oven at 375 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, take out and flip, cook for another 20 minutes.
-Cook rice while tofu is cooking, and stir fry veggies. I like to cook my veggies in teriyaki sauce.
-After tofu is done, I like to take the rest of the marinade and put it in a fying pan, fry the tofu for a few more minutes.
-I also added in peanuts to my veggies mixture. Once everything is done, plate it up!

We also made homemade spring rolls, by adding broccoli slaw and bean sprouts to an egg roll wrap, and frying them in a pan with oil.  If you don't like tofu and choose a meat option for your stir fry, I recommend using the marinade I used anyways! It's delicious!

So those are my three easy and go to dinner recipes! I hope you try them out!

What are your favorite go to dinners?

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

My Etsy Shop is Open!

Hello beautiful friends!

If you follow me on my social media accounts, then you might have seen that late last night I opened my Etsy shop! I've been teasing for a while with photos on my Instagram of things I was making to sell on Etsy, and it's finally finally open!

An Etsy shop has been something that I've wanted to do for a while, and last summer when I left my job, this is what I had in mind for myself. After a lot of thought, failed craft ideas and attempts, I finally found what I wanted to make and sell- Crystal Jewelry.
I've had an interest and longing for crystals for a while, and the idea came to me one day when I was scrolling through my news feed on IG. I follow a lot of crystal shops on there, and a lot of them make jewelry. I saw a photo of some pretty wire wrapped crystal necklaces, and I thought "I wish I could make something like that", and literally, I said to myself "Why can't I?", and I knew that it was meant to be. 

So there's the little back story behind how I found exactly what I wanted to create and sell. I still have tons of ideas and a lot of things planned for the future. Everything that I've made thus far are creations that I've worked super hard on. I've had a lot of late and sleepless nights, and tons of overwhelming emotions. I've felt stressed out and humbled at the same, but at the end of the day I'm proud of myself and the little business that I've started.  (p.s. I might not be making total sense, my brain is seriously on overload!)

I've been kind of absent here on my blog for a while, and there's many reasons for that, but one of those reasons is all of the time that I've been putting into creating things for my Etsy shop. I've been working on jewelry for the past few months, and this past week I've spend a lot of time getting things up and running. It was a ton more work than I expected, but I'm so so happy that it's finally up and running. I don't have every single item up yet, but there will definitely be more up this week and next!

If you want to check out my shop, it would mean the world to me. I had a sale within the first hour that my shop was up, and then two more items sold in he next hour. I can't even explain how much gratitude that I have and am feeling right now! My heart is so full <3

Moon Elements on Etsy  is the link to my shop, and check out my shop Instagram  and Facebook page as well! I'm currently working on a Pinterest page as well!

I have so many plans and can't wait to see what the future brings. I want everyone to know that if you put their mind to something, then they can accomplish anything. You can make your dreams come true if you put yourself on the right path to manifest them!

Friday, March 31, 2017

March Favorites | Beauty + Haircare

Hello! Happy Friday!

The end of March has arrived, so that means it's time to do another monthly beauty favorites post! Like usual, I have a few makeup products that I've been using quite a bit, and one hair care product.
 I mentioned last month that I was going to do monthly 'shop my makeup stash posts' but I figured that I would just share those items that I've been using and enjoying in favorites posts instead. It seems silly to share them twice, because most of the product would likely end up here anyways.

Starting off with makeup, the two eyeshadow palettes I've been using the most are the Tartelette in Bloom and the Urban Decay Ultimate Naked Basics palette. I swear, if I had to get rid of all my palettes except two of them, these are the two that I would keep. I love them that much. The In Bloom palette has to my all time favorite and go to palette. And the UD one is just such great quality, and has such good matte shadows in it. It's simple and pretty for everyday. I know this palette might not seem necessary if you have the other UD naked palettes, but I can't get enough of it.

I've also been using my Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette a lot recently. I used the heck out of this thing when I first bought it a few years ago, and it's been nice to revisit it.
My favorite foundation this month has been the Urban Decay Naked Skin. Mine is almost gone so I hope to pick up another one soon. This will be the 3rd bottle that I've used up!
And the last makeup product is Mac Viva Glam 2 lipstick. It's a great nude lipstick that matches perfect with both of the eye looks I do with the two palettes I mentioned above.

Last but certainly not least, I've been trying out a new shampoo, which is the Yes to Coconuts ultra moisture coconut and argan oil shampoo. This stuff smells amazing and makes my hair feel amazing too. It's made with mostly natural ingredients and it's cruelty free!

What are some of your favorites for March? Share them with me in the comments!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Friday Favorites | Current Lifestyle Favorites

Happy Friday! Who else is happy that Spring is here?! I definitely am, even though I don't exactly trust that it isn't done snowing yet. We did have a nice day earlier this week where it was in the 50s, but that quickly turned back into the 20s. None the less, I know warmer weather is on its way, and that definitely has me excited.

I thought I would do a Friday Favorites today and share some lifestyle things that I've been enjoying.

First though, I wanted to say a HUGE thank you to all of you who left me such sweet and encouraging comments on post earlier this week on cruelty free makeup. All of the great feedback really meant a lot to me because it was a post that I was honestly nervous out of my mind to post. I love you all for the encouragement you showed me!

Back to my lifestyle favorites. Honestly, not much has been going on in my life lately. I feel rather boring as these might not be the most exciting things that I've posted before, but hopefully some of you will get some enjoyment out of it! Even though nothing too exciting has been going on, I have been working on some projects that I'm crazy excited about. These things have been taking up a lot of my time and thoughts but other than that, here are the things that I've been into!

Favorite Recipe || One of my go to dinners is tacos. I've been making these like crazy. All it has in it is black beans, corn, rice, and salsa. I cook my beans and corn while my rice is in my rice steamer. Once they are all done, I mix everything together with salsa and taco sauce. I add guacamole to a tortilla and add in the mixture. It's so soo good and simple. Also, a lot of you asked in my last 'what I eat in a day post' if my husband eats meat or plant based with me. He does eat meat, but also eats most of the plant based meals that I make. So sometimes when I make this, he adds in taco meat as well. If you want to make this recipe and want meat also, just cook your taco meat and add it on top of the mixture, also add cheese, sour cream, lettuce, etc. as you wish! However, this is amazing as it is, and I hope you all try it out this way too!

Favorite Workout || Hubby and I have been doing P90X. We're trying to change our lifestyle and workout and eat healthy. This workout program is definitely not easy, but I'm excited to have a program to follow! I'm sore as hell as we speak (as I'm typing?) but I'm also excited to get in shape and do good for my body.

Favorite on TV || Is anyone else a Survivor fan?? I've seriously been watching this show since I was like 10 when the first season came out. I got my husband into it as well, and this new season came on tv 3 weeks ago and its sooo good!

Favorite Game || I don't think a lot of you are into games but I'm definitely a nerd at heart. We bought the new Nintendo Switch and I'm completely obsessed with the new Legend of Zelda game. It's so good and we've been anticipating this game for what feels like years! Honestly, this has been taking up a majority of my free time, I'm not going to lie.

Favorite Quote || And lastly, I'm ending this with my favorite quote. I read this the other day and it really hit home. It's something that I needed to read and keep in my mind. I don't think that I've had the best focus lately, and that has been something that has gotten me down mentally reading this quote has definitely help get my mindset right!

I hope you all enjoyed my current lifestyle favorites!

And now I have a question for YOU! For those of my blogger friends who make videos, what video editor do you use? I had some issues with iMovie the last time I tried to use it, and I will try it again, but I'm looking for some other options. I'm seriously the least tech savvy person in the world, and I get super discouraged when I try to figure out things like movie editors and can't figure them out. My husband has a nice one on his computer but it seems really complicated. I would like something easy to use. And I really need to stop using the 'I can't figure out my movie editor' excuse as to why I'm not making videos!

I hope you all have a lovely weekend! Do you have any fun plans? Let's chat in the comments!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Going Cruelty Free + Brands on my Radar

Hi lovelies! Happy Hump Day!

Today's post is a little different- and a bit more serious than usually. I'm going to be talking about going cruelty free with my makeup, along with reasons why and some brands that are on my radar and ones that I won't be purchasing from any more. This is a topic that is important to me and I hold near and dear to my heart. I'm a huge animal lover and think that it's horribly wrong for cosmetic companies to test on animals.

The very first reason for wanting to go cruelty free is simple- I don't believe that animals should be harmed and tested on. I will admit that I have a lot of makeup products that are not cruelty free at the moment, and  plan is to use up those items and no longer purchase from those brands and companies. I also believe in using things that I already own, so that is why I will continue to use them until they are finished up.

So many animals are harmed and killed through animal testing. It's something that truly breaks my heart and makes my stomach hurt. Why do these poor creatures have to suffer and harmed just so we can find some joy in putting makeup on our faces, etc.? I don't want to go too in depth about this, so I'm going to leave it at the fact that I no longer wish to support companies who test on animals. I've been cruelty free with my skin, body, and hair care for more than a year now, so it's time to no longer purchased makeup that's not cruelty free either. If you want more information on this topic, there's plenty of articles on the internet you can check out!

There's tons of great companies who are cruelty free, a lot of which I already purchase from. Some companies are owned by parnet companies who do test on animals, which I haven't filled decided who I feel about yet and won't be talking about in depth today. I do believe most of the high end companies I purchase from are cruelty free, and a few drugstore ones as well, so I will name a few if anyone is curious.

High End
Bare Minerals
Beauty Blender
Bite Beauty
Charlotte Tilbury
It Comsmetics
Kat Von D
Marc Jacobs Beauty
The Balm
Too Faced
Urban Decay

Drugstore/Affordable Makeup
BH Cosmetics
Hard Candy
Makeup Geek
Makeup Revolution
Physicians Formula
Real Techniques
Sonya Kashuk
Wet n Wild

These definitely are not all of the cruelty free brands, but ones that stand out to me most. I haven't tried all of these brands, but there's definitely some on my radar and ones that I've tried, but will be making a more conscious effort to try out their products instead of non cruelty free ones.

The top of my list is definitely drugstore ones, which are Wet n Wild, Elf, Pixi, and and Pacifica.

And if you're curious of brands that I'm no longing going to be purchasing from, here's a short and quick list; L'Oreal, Maybelline, Covergirl, Revlon (most bigger brand name makeup companies in the drugstore are the biggest for animal testing), Mac, Estée Lauder, Clinique Dior, Makeup Forever, Yves Saint Laurent.

A lot of these companies make some of my favorite makeup products, but I'm excited to test out and find replacements for them. I know this topic isn't for everyone, but all I ask is to educate yourself on what goes on during animal testing. I hope this post doesn't come off as pushy or judgmental to those who do not wish to go this route with their makeup, because I mean no offense. My intention of posting this is truly to hope others gain awareness of what goes on in the world in regards to animal testing and cruelty!  And if you made it through this post and enjoyed it, then thank you for reading and sticking around!

Also, if you are interested in brands that are cruelty free for Skin and Body care, along with more makeup brands that I didn't list, Cruelty Free Kitty has a great list that you can check out.

If anyone wants a post on specific products that I have my eyes on from cruelty free brands, let me know and I'd be happy to do one! 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Wet n Wild Photo Focus Foundation

Hi friends!

I've been testing out the new Wet n' Wild Photo Focus Foundation for about a month now and I though I would share my thought on it with all of you. I was pretty excited when this Foundation came out, and after hearing a ton of amazing hype about it, I definitely knew I had to try it. Wet n' Wild is a brand that's been on my radar lately because 1. they are cruelty free, and 2. they are ridiculously affordable.

I don't normally have high hopes for cheaper drugstore makeup, even though you and I both know that dispite there being tons of gems in the drugstore among the hits and misses of certain brands, I always assume the worst for some reason. But after hearing all the hype of this in the beauty community, (and my drugstores being out of stock of this baby for weeks) I did in fact, have high hopes.

This foundation comes in 20 different shades and it is said to have been tested in 7 different types of lighting conditions to make your skin look flawless in every single one of them. Those seem to be some hefty claims, and if you want to read more about which light settings they tested in then you can click here.

This foundation is ridiculously affordable at $5.99, which had me even more curious to try it.
The packaging is really nice, with a glass bottle and there is a spatula attached to the lid for easy application. I thought this was a bit weird at first, but I actually like it. I prefer foundations that come with some type of applicator, so that was a win in my book.

My Thoughts

-This foundation applies really nice and has a great formula. It goes on matte, which is always a plus for my combo oily skin. It dries super fast, which I've heard complaints about, but doesn't bother me since I apply my foundation in sections.
-It has medium coverage that I don't find to be very buildable. It feels light weight on the skin.
-I've applied it with a beauty blender, the Sigma F80, and the Wet n Wild Flat Top brush, and they all work well and pretty much the same. I've also tested it with a few different primers, and setting sprays, concealers, etc. and always seem to get the same results with it.
-I do find this to be long wearing, but my only complaint is that my face does feel pretty oily at the end of the day. However, even though my face feel a bit oily, the makeup still looks good and doesn't look like a cakey mess. I'm not sure I would recommend this to someone with super oily skin, unless you can get it to work with some good mattifying products.

So overall, this isn't the absolute best foundation that I've tried, but I think it's pretty good for how affordable it is. For now, I'm really enjoying it and it's been my most used foundation lately. I'm attempting to go cruelty free with my makeup so this is one that I will definitely reconsider repurchasing in the future.

Have you tried the Wet n Wild Photo Focus Foundation?