I’m All Wifed Up Now!

Two weeks ago, Keith and I finally made it official and we tied the knot after 11 years of being together. Here’s an action shot: 

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I have to say, we had a blast! We’re taking a honeymoon later in the winter so we took a few days off before and after the wedding to stay up at the casino and to relax. It was like a pre-honeymoon of sorts. The venue and church were perfect, my dress was perfect (I might be biased), and my dinner was perfect. We made sure to eat, we made sure to get to every table and say thank you, and we made sure to dance and have fun. 

I was strong going down the aisle, but when it came time to do our father and daughter dance, I got a little emo. We danced to “Daddy’s Little Girl” by The Mills Brothers. It’s a great oldie. Keith and I danced to “Wagon Wheel” by Old Crow Medicine show, grinning and singing the whole time. The whole night was P-E-R-F-E-C-T. I wouldn’t have changed a thing except to make the whole event longer. :) 

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Later on, we took a bathroom selfie at the casino because…why not? That bathroom was probably one of the fanciest bathrooms ever. It even had a phone in the toilet room. :P 

And if you were wondering, yes, my bridal makeup was done by yours truly and is all cruelty free and/or vegan. :) Happy two weeks to Keith and I! 

 

 

Strawberry Hedgehog Vegan Soap Review

Back in the summer, I received the most amazing care package from Ms.Tracy Perkins, the genius lady (and fellow educator) behind Strawberry Hedgehog. I was trying to expand my collection of daily soaps that were cruelty free and chemical free and this brand jumped out at me. After some amazing e-mail exchanges and chatting about vegan soaps and teaching, this beautiful care package (with a note…you know I love notes) landed on my doorstep. 

And might I compliment Tracy on her beautiful penmanship?

And might I compliment Tracy on her beautiful penmanship?

I really enjoyed trying these products, especially the deodorant! I’ll be honest. I’ve always been a bit more on the “potent” side due to my diet and my heritage, so finding a deodorant that is CF and WORKS means a lot. So, let’s dive in!

Strawberry Hedgehog soaps are all natural and handmade. I love the artisanal quality in these soaps. It’s evident that everyone at SH really takes the time to perfect their scents, ingredients, and procedures. You can see all of the soaps above, so I’m not going to break down every single scent, but I will say that these soaps hold up in the shower. Even the small sample size soaps were high quality and all came packaged in a wax-paper like wrapping. I love the attention to detail in the packaging. Sometimes samples aren’t packaged with the same amount of care. But, that’s not the case here. 

What ingredients will you be slathering on your sexy bod when you use these? Their vegan soaps are made with high quality amazing ingredients! I think the first is love, but in addition you’ll be bathing in coconut oil, palm oil, and a touch of veggie glycerin. My favorite soaps of this bunch were the Patchouli-Orange which gives a spicy scent that lasts all day and the Venus (Witch’s Brew) which also boasts a warm, spicy scent. The lavenders were nice for bedtime, but I’m more of a spice girl. :) Keith, on the other hand, loved the Coconut Almond vegan soap.

In addition to the soaps and deodorant, I also got to try their whipped body creme packed with almond, coconut, and shea butters. This lotion is THICK! I had no idea it would be so rich, so a little goes a long way. 

Overall, I loved the samples and soaps and I loved the safe, ethical ingredients that SH and Tracy choose to use. With the holidays coming up (and the cold weather), I’m sure I’ll be stocking up again soon!

Editor’s Note: The product(s) featured in this post were provided by a representative of the company named in this post for editorial consideration. I was not in any other way compensated for this post. All reviews are 100% honest and of my own opinion.

Petit Vour September Beauty Box & My Fall 2014 Fashion Must-Haves

Sweet Lord, it’s Fall on the East Coast! Of course, that means for me less time browsing Pinterest and painting my toenails (back to work I go), but I’m okay with that. Fall is my jam, and I’m having an amazing time decorating our home, burning candles, and buying as much Bath and Body Works pumpkin scented EVERYTHING I can find. I’ve also been making some BOMB home-made sugar free, dairy free pumpkin oatmeal for brekkie with the Keithster. We’re Mr. and Mrs. Fall and there are always new things I want for the season. Here’s what I’m hoping to score!

Fall 2014

Let’s face it. I can NEVER have enough chunky cardigans. I found one just like this at Hollister and am in love. It works great for the week when I’m in the classroom or paired with some cute leggings for the weekend. I’m aware that Fall, too, is a time to replace some of the old pieces in my closet. I bought a pair of cheapo booties and I’m looking for a higher quality replacement. We’ll see how that goes! I’m also in the market for some cute printed tights (to wear with sweater dresses), and a new black infinity scarf…because really…who has TOO many black scarves? Not this lady!

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My Fall kicked off right with my Petit Vour September beauty box, too! I’m stoked to 1) See my girl Tashina as a collaborator once again! and 2) To try some amazing new products! I already love Ellovi, but the other brands are all new to me! PS – I actually pay for this box just in case that matters to anyone. I always have disclosures when I’m reviewing, but I think it’s important to mention that THIS BOX IS WORTH THE MONEY! And it ships free to the US. :) So, if you’re in the market for vegan beauty products…look no further! 

Have you started to overhaul your fall cosmetics and clothes? 

Vegan Sausage & Peppers with Upton’s Naturals

There is a lot of cooking that goes on in the Keith and Christine compound. Seriously, we’re always cooking SOMETHING. We love to entertain and we really like spending time in the kitchen together…even though our food ideals don’t match up completely. We rarely go out to eat, and to be honest, why would we when when we’ve got some much deliciousness going on right here at home? Because we are a “multivore” household, a lot of our recipes have to work with an interchangeable protein. I am becoming a seitan worshiper (hah!), and Upton’s Naturals sent me coupons so I could experiment with their AMAZING product at home. So far, I’ve been working with the Italian Style Seitan and Keith and I developed this Vegan Sausage and Peppers sandwich that will make your Nonnie’s proud!

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When it looks pretty when it’s cooking, you know you have a winner!

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Topped with delicious, Daiya Mozzarella Shreds!

Vegan Sausage & Peppers
Serves 4
Write a review
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
91 calories
11 g
11 g
3 g
5 g
2 g
183 g
101 g
7 g
0 g
1 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
183g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 91
Calories from Fat 30
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 3g
5%
Saturated Fat 2g
9%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 11mg
4%
Sodium 101mg
4%
Total Carbohydrates 11g
4%
Dietary Fiber 3g
11%
Sugars 7g
Protein 5g
Vitamin A
31%
Vitamin C
116%
Calcium
9%
Iron
7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 pckg. Upton's Naturals Italian Seitan
  2. 1 green bell pepper (medium)
  3. 1 red bell pepper (medium)
  4. 1 small white onion
  5. 1 1/2 c. tomato sauce (we used our homemade marinara!)
  6. 1/2 c. Daiya Mozzarella Shreds
Instructions
  1. Roughly chop your peppers and onions. Saute them in some EVOO until tender.
  2. Add Upton's Naturals Italian Seitan and gently break up.
  3. Cook until lightly browned with a bit of crisp to the seitan.
  4. Add tomato sauce (make your own or use the canned stuff), and cook down until consistency is thick enough to hold up on a sandwich.
  5. Pour on your favorite whole grain bun, top with Daiya Mozzarella shreds and Mangia!
beta
calories
91
fat
3g
protein
5g
carbs
11g
more
http://curls.nu/
The first thing that happened when I went vegetarian was researching how to keep our multivore household simple. I researched all of my favorite recipes (Dad’s meatballs, Mom’s broccoli rabe, etc…) and found simple ways to make them suitable for me and anyone else who happens to be eating at our home. This recipe is a true favorite for all types of eaters and Upton’s Naturals makes a great product that is versatile and tasty. Keep an eye out for more of my Upton’s inspired recipes and let me know if you want to see my transform your favorite Italian dishes!

Upton’s Naturals provided coupons for complimentary products. No other compensation has been provided and all opinions are honest and my own.

Nubian Heritage Soap & Body Wash Review

Last month, my good friends over at Nubian Heritage hooked me up with some amazing items to try!  Last month I was all about hydrating the skin and now I’m all about keeping it clean as I begin my new job, a new crazy gym schedule, and a whole bunch of Fall adventures. Once the weather changes, my skin revolts! Since going cruelty free I was able to find some amazing soaps and body washes that keep my skin happy all year long. Secret: even my burly grave-digging fiance loves this stuff. It keeps him clean, too! So…enough about me! Let’s talk about these amazing, packed with shea butter goodness products, shall we?

Two body washes for ultimate skin happiness!

Two body washes for ultimate skin happiness!

These body washes rocked my shower every morning! 

The Coconut and Papaya smelled amazing. I loved how tropical and fun it was for the summer months. During the past few weeks it’s been great to use something that reminds me of beach days (especially that I’m back to work now). The great thing about this body wash are the shea butter and the natural papaya extract which exfoliates as it moisturizes. I loved how my skin felt! 

The second body wash was the Goat’s Milk and Chai with Rosewater blend. I also got a chance to try the same soap which we’ll talk about later. :) The Frankincense and Myrrh inside this soap gives an amazing scent. It’s sexy and heady. Definitely a scent for a night out. Whereas the Coconut and Papaya is light and fresh, this scent is a bit heavier and stays for much longer. The formula is thick and the lather is super rich. I loved using this body wash after shaving and after the gym! Spa in the shower at home? I think so! Best of all? Both of these items are cruelty free.

 

 

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Love the packaging, too!

The next set of products from Nubian Heritage were their soaps.

I want to start off by saying that Nubian Heritage Soaps last forever! They don’t melt and break down like some other soaps (especially natural and cruelty free brands) that I’ve tried in the past. That’s always a deal breaker for me! I was able to try the Carrot and Pomegranate, Goat’s Milk and Chai, and Mango Butter soaps. All of these are created with ethically sourced, natural, cruelty free ingredients! No animal testing here! :)

The Carrot and Pomegranate soap smells amazing and earthy. I love the shade, too. The bright orange is fun and adds some sunshine to the early morning showers I take. This soap is also peppered with cranberries. I love the calendula extract, too. This soap is soothing, fruity, and fun. 

Meanwhile, the Mango Butter soap is soothing and simple. This is a great soap for anyone (my Keith) which sensitive skin. If you’re wild about scents, start here. This soap boats Mango, Cocoa, and Shea butter (moisturizer TRIFECTA!), and honey and cornmeal for a gentle exfoliater. 

Overall, these soaps and body washes are high quality, ethical, natural products for anyone looking to remove some toxins from their homes and skincare routines. I love the philosophy of this company and I love their products. Tweet them and ask them which products you should check out first…but trust me. Any of these are a great place to start!

Editor’s Note: The product(s) featured in this post were provided by a representative of the company named in this post for editorial consideration. I was not in any other way compensated for this post. All reviews are 100% honest and of my own opinion.

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