Monday, November 30, 2015

My Newest Skincare Commitment

This is about to sound completely ridiculous, but I have not had a consistent face wash since I switched over completely to cruelty-free products. I've managed to squeak by using samples, products in my Petit Vour box, or even using my husband's face wash (sorry, babe). It's just that I haven't found anything that I love enough.

In the interest of full disclosure, I'll admit that I only wash my face in the morning while in the shower, so that has also contributed to me stretching out all the samples, etc. At night, I use my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE elf Makeup Remover Cleansing Wipes (I'm totally serious when I say that I buy them 2 or 3 packs at a time to ensure I never run out). Even after years of reading that it's not enough to simply use towelettes to clean your face, I've persevered.

That is, until last week. I was in CVS picking up a prescription and in the mood for a bit of a pick-me-up when I wandered into the "Natural Beauty" section when I stumbled upon this Promise Organic Nourishing Coconut Milk Facial Cleanser. I grabbed it for about $8 and then went home to use it (after using my beloved towelettes).

It smells amazing and leaves my face feeling toned and fresh (not dry and tight), and I've loved incorporating it in my routine!

After washing with my Clarisonic, which I dusted off after several months of neglect, I like to roll on some of this serum in my lines (yes, they're starting), followed by an around the eye massage with this eye oil, topping it all off with a generous slather of this facial oil.

*I'm going to add one more little note here. I have a theory that part of my distaste for actually washing my face at night, aside from laziness, is the mess that it leaves in my tiny bathroom. I tend to get a bit overzealous with my face washing and splashing a la a face wash commercial and then everything is soaked. I started washing my face in my much larger kitchen sink and it's a much more pleasurable experience (and quite a bit tidier as well). I'm hoping that by coming forward with my story, my bravery will inspire others to wash their faces outside of the shower.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

A Seasonal Update

Early in September, I made a deal with my husband. The deal was that I was going to purchase a bag and pair of boots that I was MADLY IN LOVE WITH (to the tune of a few hundred dollars-no small purchase understandably) and in exchange, I would not be purchasing another pair of shoes or bag until January 1, 2016 (you can bet your top and bottom dollar that I have a pair of shoes picked out for my new year purchase).

This deal was made in conjunction with a desire to have only things that I LOVE in my life. For me, it was a bit nerve wracking to think that I would not bring another bag or shoe into my wardrobe until the new year, but honestly, it's been freeing. Now, I don't even waste time looking at new bags/shoes because I feel really fulfilled with what I have. As an undiagnosed shopaholic, I'm very surprised to be sharing these words, but I think this could become a new way of life for me. I experienced the same feeling of freedom when I stopped eating meat and started purchasing only cruelty free products. When your choices are limited, it's so much easier to a. make a decision and b. stay on track with clear cut yes/no "rules".

Novel concept: buying 1 pair of shoes and 1 bag per season to freshen things up and to ensure you only buy what you love. I highly recommend giving it a try!

You're probably wondering what shoes and bag I grabbed, right?

*Editor's Note: In the end I returned the boots. I loved them, but I had a really hard time pairing them with pants that I already own due to the higher piece of leather around the ankle in the front. With the whole philosophy of having only items that I love, I had to let them go. I loved them, but I wasn't going to wear them. In their place, I purchased a pair of custom Adidas sneakers that I will be sharing soon!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Love x Style x Life

I'm not entirely sure how Garance Doré came into my life, but somehow she found her way. First, mentioned as the other half of one Scott Schuman (aka The Sartorialist), then as a blogger/illustrator, and most recently as an author.

I had seen through several of her instagram posts and also a feature on The New Potato that she had written a book on everything-life, style, love, and French-ness-basically all things Garance.

To be completely honest, I had admired her from afar, never really diving too deeply into her blog, but always enjoying it and her instagram posts whenever they came across my screen. That being said, I am now a huge fan!

I loved her book! It felt to me like the love child of Alexa Chung's It, and Caroline de Maigret's How to be Parisian Wherever You Are. I was in Barnes and Noble with my husband a couple weeks ago and I happened to see Love x Style x Life on a table and I began flipping through it, immediately liking what I saw, so I did what any sensible person did, I went on my Amazon app and ordered it for $12 cheaper with Prime Shipping (guilty of #ShowRooming).

It arrived exactly 2 days later as expected and I devoured it within a week. I wouldn't really call myself a francophile, but I definitely appreciate the mythical French Woman's approach to life and style, I also have an insatiable desire to be more European, regardless of country, just more European, so I was hooked immediately by her promise of "style through storytelling" aka attainable je ne sais quoi,  and I'd say she definitely delivered.

I would recommend this book to anyone interested in finding your personal style, while simultaneously hanging out with Garance Doré.

Monday, November 16, 2015

A Little (Long) Note

Recently, I've been the quietest that I've ever been on Novelty. My husband jokes that each of my posts opens with, "It's been a while. . ." and I can't really say that he's wrong.

In my absence, I've been debating wether or not I wanted to keep going with Novelty, something that I debated with Samm while on our brunch date. Then I received an email from Hover, my domain host stating that my domain was coming up for renewal in 90 days, I could either renew and keep going, or cancel and let go of Novelty. I chose to renew and keep going, for now. . .

Officially, I've decided not to decide. I'm not sure how long I'll keep going or what this blog will eventually become. For now, I have a few more posts in my head, and I want to get them out-wether or not they're my last remains to be seen.

The past few weeks saw a shift in the seasons and in my life and I've been on a kick of cleaning, organizing, and purging. I have a pretty serious case of "nesting" without the related pregnancy. I feel so much lighter and in control of my life and I would recommend ridding your life of everything that brings you less than "joy" (I'm planning to read Ms. Kondo's book ASAP), I promise, you'll feel renewed.

In place of blogging, I've been enjoying mid week days off (I work on Saturday and I'm off on Wednesday) and I've been devoting each day off to a single purpose. For example, one day was filled with "maintenance" doctor appointments, another day saw me running errands to 10 different locations, while one saw me tying up loose ends in the morning and indulging myself in the afternoon. If you have PTO or the ability to schedule yourself a Wednesday off, I highly recommend that as well, it breaks up an otherwise monotonous schedule and allows you to breeze through errands and shopping while everyone else is working-you truly can't beat the "playing hooky" feeling that it brings.

With all of the above being said, please see below for some recent life snaps to bring you up to date. Also, get ready for some fun new posts, probably on a schedule of 2-4 posts per week, keeping up with 5 posts weekly has proven too great a task for moi, I'm a delicate orchid after all!


We attended Caitlin and Brian's picture perfect wedding in Maine in September.

Later in the month we had dinner for Michael's birthday at Fish in Ridgewood (delicious).

My best friends and I spent a beautiful fall day at Warwick Valley Winery and were lucky enough to witness the engagement of our friend Lisa to Joe!!

Harry is just as fuzzy and sleepy as ever, while Piglet still fights to keep her tongue in her mouth.

I dressed as Rosie the Riveter on Halloween to hand out candy while at work!