Sep 22, 2016

Crunchy New Beauty Products I am Loving

A few months ago, I was in LA and ran into an old friend of mine.  Lets call her Skin Diva.  She will love that.  We were chatting about my products and she asked if I had ever heard of Beautycounter.  The short answer was no, and I was intrigued.

They have this list, called the never list, which is all of the chemicals that aren't in any of their products.  That was crunchy love for me. I don't have time to check everything.  Its one of the reasons why I love shopping at Whole Foods.  Not everyone has time for constant vigilance, and I appreciate a company that has a standard that I believe in.

Then the products.  I haven't tried the makeup yet (I will), but I have tried the skin care.  I LOVE it.  This may sound strange, but I get excited about cute packaging.  It was really pretty, and the steps were simple to follow.  The first collection that I tried is called Face Collection. It's a gentle cleanser, exfoliation and toning system.  Be still my heart about all of the tubes of fun!  Before you freak out at the price, know that you can try samples and make sure that you love it.


The next one that I tried is the Countertime Collection. After too many winters in tanning beds (gasp) and not taking care of my skin, I was most excited to try it. The description says things like reducing the size of pores and helping to fight those mommy/late night dark circles.  Without chemicals!  The dark circle struggle is real ladies.

Finally, the mommy be all end all.  Its called the Cleansing Balm.  As much as I like all of the cute sets, I often don't have the energy at the end of the day for a multi-step routine.  This bad boy removed the makeup, and left my skin feeling hydrated and fabulous.  I imagine I will love it even more in the dry, Maryland winter!  I wasn't that excited by its packaging (haha) so I tried it last.  Who freaking knew!

On my next to try list include the oils, and the kids collection.

One of the last things that I really like about Beautycounter is much like Lularoe, Avon, Mary Kay, Younique, and many others, this is a small business.  When you buy from your representative, you are helping a mom stay home with her kids, pay for college loans, and keeping a family afloat.  I love that, and I love supporting mom run businesses.

I received samples for the purposes of review, but the opinions are all my own.  When you click on an affiliate link from me, you are helping to support my family...thank you.



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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Sep 19, 2016

On the Menu Tonight? It's EASY!

I know...insane, isn't it

When we were in Hawaii the last time, I had the most amazing Kalua Pig.  It was smack your mama good.  The problem is that it takes forever to cook.  Like 16 hours forever.  Enter my trusty Instant Pot.

Yesterday, Whole Foods had a really good sale in the meat department, so I scored a really inexpensive pork shoulder. After many long, intense discussions with the hubs (who wants to use his fancy smoker for ALLTHETHINGS), we took the lazy way out.  Pressure cooking!



I found this recipe from Nom Nom Paleo.  At only 90 minutes, (plus a couple to cook the bacon) it looks delicious and easy!  The Instant Pot really makes cooking quick, especially when you forget to start dinner like I do half the time.



It was a hit with the kiddos (who proclaimed it pretty ok), and especially with my mini T-Rex.  She only eats meat, and in case you have one of those, you understand what I mean.


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Sep 14, 2016

Top 10: Pumpkin Patches & Fall Farms in Maryland



My son has his birthday on Halloween, so the fall is very special for our family.  Every year we look forward to enjoying the brisk weather and experiencing all of the farm fun that Maryland has to offer.  Here are a few of our favorites:

1.Weber's Cider Mill Farm 

Whether you are looking for a hayride and pumpkin patch, or apple-cider and delicious baked goodies, Weber's has something for everyone.  Beginning on September 17, with the Johnny Appleseed celebration, the fall festivities are in full swing.

2. Clark's Elioak Farm

A family favorite with the Enchanted Forest, pumpkin patch, petting zoo, rides and fun for the whole family!

3. Queen Anne Farm

This farm in Mitchellville, Maryland has all the fall festivities!  A petting zoo, hayride, pumpkin patch (and pre- picked pumpkins), mums and other fall vegetation are available for purchase.

4. Butler's Orchard

This orchard, and fall family fun extravaganza, has an annual pumpkin festival.  With a variety of free activities like hayrides and slides, and others that have an additional fee (like pumpkin launching and Pick Your Own apples), you are sure to find something for everyone to enjoy.

5. Larriland Farm-

 A Howard County favorite for hayrides, apple picking, and pumpkin patching, you can also take a trip through the "boo barn", a not so scary Halloween venture.

6. TLV Tree Farm

TLV is our family's annual place to meet Santa and cut our own tree.  They also have a hayride to the pumpkin patch, and we love it!  With a variety of heirloom pumpkins, the kids really enjoy picking a unique one for the porch.

7. Rodgers' Farm-  

Formerly North Run Farm, Rodgers' has hayrides, pumpkins (including pick your own), a mini maze, fresh apples, and cider.

8. Baugher's-

 Baugher's is a fall wonderland.  They have a restaurant on site with pit beef and homemade ice cream, but they also have the standard pumpkin patch hayride.  A fun addition is another hayride to pick your own apples!

9. Hawks Hill Creamery

Just because I love dairy farms with homemade ice cream and cheese, they also have hayrides, pumpkin patch, and a petting zoo. They also happen to have a beer garden...

10. Gaver Tree Farm

Gaver Tree is a huge place with animal petting, pumpkin patch and hayride, food, and a ton of fun things for the kids to do (for a fee).

A lot of these places get very crowded on weekends and school days off.  My best advice is to go early in the season.  As always, please consult the websites (or call) before leaving for the day.  Did I miss any that you would add to this list?




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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Sep 12, 2016

The WOW Summit, my First Crunchy Mama Conference

This has been a banner month for me.  I am so pleased to share that I will be attending the Moms Meet WOW summit, in the DC area, on October 7-8, 2016!



  This will be my first "real" blogging conference and I am super excited.  On Friday, its just for bloggers (where we will do all kinds of nerdy blogger stuff), but on Saturday?  Saturday is for moms!  Not only will I get to learn about branding, and analytics, but I will get to enjoy comedy and cocktails with my colleagues!


Then on Saturday, I get to meet with lots of other moms, like me.  I am so excited.  The next, and possibly best part is getting to meet (and see) brands.  We use the Nordic Naturals gummies for our kids every day!  I can't wait to talk to new ones, like BeautyCounter.  I have heard a ton about it, and have just used some sample packs (which I will talk about later) and I LOVED it.  Here is a list of the vendors and sponsors!



This conference is kind of my perfect storm.  Crunchy mamas like me and learning a lot.  I'm pretty new at this blogging thing, and believe me, there is a LOT I don't know.


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Sep 10, 2016

SophistiCrunchy Fashion...It's a Thing

I am finally looking forward to fall.  The weather has been SO hot for the last few days, that I can't wait to have the windows open at night.  I also can't wait to try some of my new outfits!

I have recently started selling a LOT of the clothes in my closet.  After having three kids, my clothes just didn't make me happy.  I tried to implement the Konmari thing...if it didn't bring me joy, out it went.  So far I have been pretty successful, but one issue has been finding things that I love to replace the ones I have gotten rid of.

Not only do I have to feel good in them, but they have to be practical for my busy lifestyle.  Between errands, my million trips as a mommy uber, the gym, and nights when I want to feel pretty, my new clothes have some major shoes to fill.

Two of my new versatile pieces are from Prana.  I really love them.  The pants are out of my comfort zone, but I like it.  First, they are white.  If you grew up in the South (like I did), likely your mother hammered into you that you DO NOT wear white after labor day.  I am rebelling with my first pair of white jeans.  Second, they are white.  LOL.  White can be challenging to wear with small children.  Thankfully, thus far they have survived unscathed, and I am pretty excited to add something new to the mix.



The super crunchy mama in me loves that they use things like organic cotton in the denim.  Just a fit FYI, mine were really stretchy, and I would probably go down one size if you are in doubt.

This top is perfect for fall/winter. Its colors are great for those grey days and can be a layering piece for the gym that doesn't look like gym wear.  The material is super lightweight, but not see-through.  I wore the shirt without a tank and, despite its light weight, it was scandal-free!  WIN!



As a thank you for the review, Prana has extended to my readers a ONE TIME 15% discount at Prana.com.  The code MMLPSTWS is valid through October 31, 2016.


 I received this product for free from Moms Meet (momsmeet.com), May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my honest opinion on my blog. The opinions posted are my own. 


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Sep 7, 2016

Storks: Totally Worth Taking the Kids and Here's Why



Soooo, Storks.  My oldest (6 years old) has been begging to see Storks since she saw the trailer a few months ago during Finding Dory.  I sort of rolled my eyes because after The Secret Life of Pets, I wasn't too psyched about any non-Disney movie.  Let's just say I had low expectations.  So low, in fact, that I sent the hubs to review it.  Oops!  Bad call:

Storks is a great movie with enough silliness for the kids, enough banter for the grown-ups, and little to no use of cringe-worthy potty humor.

Mrs. SwS was on birthday party duty, so I (the hubs) took the Honeybadger and Belle to the movies. Honking bag of popcorn: CHECK. Gas tank sized Sprite: CHECK. Three 3D glasses: CHECK. Potty emergency the moment the chords strike for the Harry Potter trailer: CHECK!



Storks has two main story lines. The first follows an odd-couple dynamic as Tulip (human) and Junior (stork) attempt to deliver a baby without the boss finding out. Hi-jinks ensue. Inventions, wolves, penguins, Stork-conn. The movie has a lot of silliness, which I am in favor of. Silliness is my favorite. The second story line follows a busy Mom and Dad as they try to make time in their busy lives for their son. The boy has some precious one-liners.

Here is why this movie hits all of its intended demographics:
Kids: Lots of stunning scenes, silliness, cute babies, and adventure.
All Grown-ups: Everyone knows a Pigeon Toadie in their office. Absurdity that I find hilarious.
Parents: Relive difficulties of dealing with a newborn. The tough decisions of balancing work and play.

The best part of this is what the movie was missing. The move never put babies in believable danger. The odd couple never has the trite falling-out. There is no potty humor despite ample chances (Lots of diapers, nary a poop joke). Proof-positive that this is not necessary for a kids' movie.

Honeybadger's favorite parts (MILD SPOILER ALERT), and keep in mind that this is the fantastical rambling of a six year old...

"The wolves are one of my favorites!"

"When they make lots and lots of babies because they are so cute" (you have to be there)

"My favorite part about Junior is that well well he didn't really know all about Tulip at the beginning but when the boss said fire her, but then when they had to deliver the baby he started used to how Tulip is and how she acts and what she does."

"Pigeon toady? Well, I like him because his voice is pretty funny. My favorite part was when he was talking about his girlfriend. He shouldn't even be up there because he's a pigeon. Pigeons should be down on land."

"Did I tell you about the baby. Because she is so cute and has ninja skills. Is that the baby, well, she's so cute, she's so nice, she has ninja skills, I think that is very funny."

Do you see what I mean about the rambling?  The point is that she LOVED it and can't wait to own it.







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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Sep 1, 2016

Dear Travis Rudolph, at First I Didn't Want to Say Thank You

Today I was having coffee with some of my girlfriends and they mentioned,  "Did you see the FSU player (Travis Rudolph) that sat with the little autistic boy at lunch?"  I had briefly seen it, and we all generally agreed that it didn't make any sense for the media to laud him as though he is Mother Theresa.

But it made me think...what if it were my son sitting all alone at lunch?  This may happen in years to come.  Perhaps this man will make a difference for this one little boys' lunch experience for the rest of the school year.  Mother Teresa, no.  Kind, yes.  

As the mother of a child of Autism, I realize that communication is one of the hardest aspects of life for him.  The same goes for many of his peers.  What did that mean to this football player?  He probably had to struggle to talk to this little guy.  Unless he is familiar with children with communication issues, it may have really tried his patience.  He did it though, and that makes my mommy heart glad.

I had sort of passed through all of those feelings when I read this Bleacher Report article on Facebook.  The little boy's mom made a point to say how much Travis's act of kindness meant to her.  She described her son as very sweet, with a hug for everyone. I stopped short.  It grabbed me in the pit of my stomach because I can see me.  I see my son.  Her son didn't eat by himself that day.  That day, his mom didn't struggle with her own feelings about her child being lonely, though he may not express it.  So thank you, Travis Rudolph.  Thank you to everyone that goes out of your way to make sure that this child, and MY CHILD, doesn't eat alone.




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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.