Thursday, September 27, 2018

Sephora Play! Unboxing September 2018

I absolutely love all things beauty and makeup (hence the whole entire page dedicated to makeup, lol). I knew I wanted to try out new products without committing to full-sized expensive products. Plus, I'm balling on a budget, y'all. I knew I wanted to try subscription services but didn't really know where to start. I had used the Target and Walmart Beauty Boxes in the past, but pretty recently I became obsessed with premium beauty products, and I haven't looked back. I am in the process of trying to become a Sephora affiliate blog, but it takes a really long time. There are several boxes out there, but I needed one with good products and a good price. I picked two boxes, Birchbox and the Sephora Play! box. I have been so impressed with the value for the money of these two. I suggest you go and sign up.

Without further ado, here is the unboxing of the September 2018 unboxing of the Sephora Play! box!!!

Look how adorable the box looks when you open it!!

All of the PLAY! boxes come with 50 bonus play rewards points for use at Sephora and tips and tricks for using the makeup and products that they sent. The play points can be used to get even more samples from Sephora. 

This month's box came with six products:

1. Tidal Brightening Enzyme Cream

The Tidal cream is a rejuvenation cream that plumps and brightens your dull spots. The product looks and smells great. I tried it on my skin and it left a crisp feeling that was enjoyable. I'm going to try it overnight on my dull spots. GRADE: A

2. Sephora Lashcraft Big Volume Mascara

This has a decent applicator, although I prefer a bit more curl. My 4-year old son tried it on (he loves to help with my pictures, just wait and see. Haha. It looked great on his blonde eyelashes and made his eyes pop. I tried it out, too, and really thought it had a good color and wasn't overly clumpy. I would probably choose another brand, but I would definitely use this one if it wasn't available. GRADE: B

3. Nudestix Intense Matte Lip + Cheek Stick
Does it get any cuter?

Totally blendable color

I love hybrid products. I like products that can be used for multiple things. These lip and cheek sticks can be hit-or-miss. I loved this one. It is SUPER blendable. The color is adorable. This was a definite hit for me and my favorite item in the box. LOVE. GRADE: A++

4. Too Faced Hangover Replenishing Primer
This primer had a nice feel to it. I've got a preferred primer, but I'd like to try this one out and see whether it has additional benefits to my skin that mine doesn't have. GRADE: B

5. VIKTOR & ROLF Flowerbomb Nectar
This little perfume has a really floral but not too strong scent. I'm getting really into perfumes and scents lately and was happy to see this in my box. It's so dang cute in presentation, too. GRADE: A

6. Peter Thomas Roth Heat Mask
Masks are all the rage right now. I'm super stoked to try this one out. If it were up to me, I would have opted for another makeup product, though. GRADE: B

All-in-all, I think we've got another solid Play! box!!! I can't wait to see what comes out next month! 

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Poor Man's Keto Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers - ALDI

I am OBSESSED with Aldi right now. We went from a thriving two job household to a one job household. We're making it, but things are definitely tight and my budget is even tighter. We have about $400 a month budgeted for grocery items and honestly, it's just not possible to make that work at Walmart. I love a lot of things about Walmart (savings catcher, ibotta shopping, shopkick, etc.), but we can't shop there for the majority of our groceries because we just can't afford it. One of my favorite quick, easy, healthy, and keto friendly meals right now are the Poor Man's Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers. There are lots of variations of this recipe on Pinterest, but this is the one that I really came up with, and all of the ingredients are available at your local Aldi store!!


The fanciest china for my house. Lol!
  • 3 large green bell peppers
  • 1/2 to 1 white or yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 packages of Lunch Mate Roast Beef (Aldi's Buddig-style brand) sliced in strips
  • 6 slices Happy Farms Sliced Provolone Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Happy Farms Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • 2 TBSP Worcestershire Sauce (watch carb count)
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wash bell peppers and slice in half. Remove seeds and stem.
  3. In a medium frying pan brown onion in a little bit of olive oil. 
  4. Add roast beef strips, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic powder and heat through.
  5. Add mozzarella cheese to meat mixture and stir. 
  6. Stuff peppers with meat/cheese filling. Place a slice of Provolone cheese on top. 
  7. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until cheese is brown and peppers are softened. 
Nutrition Facts
Servings 3.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 351
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 22 g34 %
Saturated Fat 13 g65 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 90 mg30 %
Sodium 1820 mg76 %
Potassium 208 mg6 %
Total Carbohydrate 11 g4 %
Dietary Fiber 2 g8 %
Sugars 1 g
Protein 23 g46 %
Vitamin A19 %
Vitamin C159 %
Calcium61 %
Iron10 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

August PINCHme sample box!!!

OMG FREEEEEEEE! I love anything and every thing free. You have to try out PINCHme. Use my referral link, please. You cannot beat all these free goodies. CLICK HERE AND JOIN!!

Interwebs Disclaimer: Everything in the PINCHme box is free, but the thoughts about the products are my own!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Money Making Apps for the SAHM, WAHM, or Anyone with a Pulse! Part Three: Honey

If you are shopping online, you need to be using your desktop/laptop device to get the best deals possible. While it's so easy and enticing to just buy products from your phone, it's a lot harder to remember to get the cash back that many places offer through partner apps. My favorite partner app at the moment is Honey. Honey is a browser extension that you add into your Chrome and it will automatically monitor pricing for you and also input promo codes for you to get you the best deal. On top of that, they offer cash back in the form of "Honey Gold", Honey Gold points are a 1 point to 1 penny ratio which means it's a high reward system. Also, Honey offers cash back promotions for different stores that can boost your cash and start building that reserve. Honey Gold can be redeemed for Amazon, Target, Walmart, or even Sephora cash (my personal favorite, self-proclaimed makeup addict).

Here is an example of a really good cash back deal I got during school supply shopping time:

Office Depot/Office Max was running their 1 cent, 50 cents, dollar special that they do yearly. I waited to buy supplies until the special ran. Honey was running a promotion for an extra 1,000 ($10) Honey Gold bonus when you bought at Office Max and a 1% Honey Gold reward rate. Honey then also found me a promo code for 30% off of non-sale items for my purchase. I ended up with a starting purchase price of $86.00 for school supplies for two kiddos. The Honey promo code that was added took my price down to $74.00. The Honey Gold I got back was the $10.00 promotional credit PLUS $0.74 in the 1% Honey Gold reward rate. That means with the Office Max deals Honey found and the stackable rewards promotions from Honey, my school supplies for two kids (and I mean EVERYTHING but backpacks) ended up being $63.26. I mean getting school supplies done for 2 kids for around $30 a piece is UNHEARD of. And it's all thanks to Honey!!!

Another great money-saving feature of Honey that is going to be very useful is the Honey Droplist feature. Say you're looking for a specific item for Christmas, for example, the Nintendo Switch. Go to Amazon and search for the Nintendo Switch (make sure your Honey extension is ENABLED on your browser). You can click to view the item's price history and if you click the h+ sign (see pic) you can actually have Honey monitor the price of that item for the next 60 days AND alert you when it's at it's cheapest!!!! How amazing is that?!

Hit that h+ and monitor the price y'all!!!

In short, Honey Gold is absolutely worth its weight in Gold (see what I did there?). It helps build your reserve AND save you money. It needs to be on your money saving list. But, please, use your laptop or desktop to do your Christmas shopping so you can maximize your deals!!!

As with all of my posts about these apps, this is an affiliate link, but trust me that this app is 110% amazing! CLICK HERE TO JOIN HONEY TODAY!!!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Money Making Apps for the SAHM, WAHM, or Anyone with a Pulse! Part Two: trunow

Gas. Gas is so damn expensive. My family goes to the gas station a lot. My husband is a delivery driver and spends most days out in the field. He makes numerous trips to the gas station for food or drinks. We are a typical family who gets gas in our vehicles at least once a week, too. You have got to find ways to save when you cut your budget. My favorite gas saving app/money making app for gas stations hands down is trunow.

The trunow app is two-fold, the app will tell you which gas station has the cheapest gas around you, and then if you take pictures of your gas receipt, it gives you points for them which you exchange for cash or gift cards. Again, I have really specific rules for what apps I will use. See Part One of my post about ibotta.

trunow - Top bar has cheapest gas. Receipt picture gives you points for cash.

I'm all about this app since I am dually saving money because it's finding the lowest gas price for me and adding to my reserve funds through gift cards. trunow also allows you to spend your saved money at gas stations, however, I don't have any locally that accept it. Sign up today for trunow. You won't regret the savings. All of those pennies and points add up! My reserve money makes or breaks our house. Stay tuned tomorrow for the next suggested app!

Note: My link to trunow is an affiliate link. You and I both benefit from you taking the step to make your reserve!!

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Money Making Apps for the SAHM, WAHM, or Anyone with a Pulse! Part One: ibotta

I am the queen of making passive income. When we went back to a single income household, we knew we'd have to tighten our belts around here. Part of that has always included me learning ways to create a small passive income stream to help out with things like Christmas, birthdays, or groceries. When I got around to research the apps and things that were out there, it was a little bit overwhelming, but I knew my requirements for using and sustaining an app, which made it a little easier.

1. I won't do surveys. Nobody has time for bullshit surveys while they are trying to chase kids and pick everyone up, take everyone where they need to go, etc. Surveys are bullshit and I've yet to find a single company that will actually pay any real money to speak of. (Besides MTurk, but that's for another post). 

2. I will only do ones that are going to reward me for shit I already do. I'm not going to go out of my way and buy a product that I won't ever use. This is key. Getting it so far? Only do easy shit, because why not? If you're going to pay me a penny for a receipt I'm gonna throw in the shit can, I'll take your money.

So, without further ado, here is post one in my series about my favorite passive money making apps (there are affiliate links in this post, I get shit when you sign up for things, but you're winning AND I'm winning, so let's just be winners together, okay?):

1. Ibotta - (Please use my referral code: nebmsnu and we can boost our Teamwork bonus) A lot of people have a love/hate relationship with ibotta. And honestly, I can see why. But, if you use ibotta properly, you can make a lot of money, and you can get money for something you already do. The lamest part of ibotta is that right now they don't accept pickup order receipts. I love Walmart Grocery and if I never have to step up in a store again in my life it would be too soon. But, with ibotta, you have to go in. ibotta is like Fight Club, it has rules to be able to use it effectively. Focus on big picture, you have to have $20.00 to cash out. Again, I only activate rebates on items I already use. That means my common kitchen staples. The other thing I look for are 100% free items, because honestly who doesn't love free shit? I know I do. Here is a good example of when I used ibotta the other day:

Dollar General - Suave Men's Shampoo/Bodywash - Dollar General had a buy $6.00 get $2.00 off coupon on Suave Men's Shampoo. The products were $2.00 a piece. I bought 3. $6-$2. Then ibotta had 50 cents off of each bottle. I uploaded my receipt and got $1.50 back PLUS a bonus 25 cents back for any item. That made my final purchase for 3 bottles of shampoo $2.25. BUT, it didn't stop there. I also had a $3.00 off $15.00 coupon. That discounted my purchase price even further. I would have bought those products anyway, but this was much easier on my pocketbook.

Strategically use ibotta for yourself. Bonus points if you can combine ibotta with a coupon. Bank the money you make and you have an emergency fund building for when you need it. I started using ibotta in June of this year and I have YTD made $116.00.

Again, use my referral nebmsnu and sign up for ibotta today so you can start building that emergency fund!

Saturday, September 15, 2018

September 2018 Birchbox Unboxing

September 2018 Birchbox Unboxing

-Free Benefit Highbeam Highlighter Mini FREEGLOW
-Free Bombas socks COZYFEET
-Free Stila All Day Lip Trio PERFECTKISS
-Bobbi Brown Smoky Eye Mascara SMOKEY

Ignore my sick voice! Getting over a cold!

Friday, September 7, 2018

August 2018 Sephora Play Unboxing

Okay, first of all, you have to check out this box! It's totally worth the $10.00 price tag!!!! Second of all, I'm obsessed with all the products in it!

Thursday, September 6, 2018

August Birchbox Unboxing

You have got to check out the Birchbox! Use my referral link! And for a limited time, use promo codes LIPTREAT or CROSSWIRES to get a full-sized MAC lipstick with your first box!!!

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