Mary Kay Ash – Miracles Happen

Miracles Happen: The Life and Timeless Principles of the Founder of Mary Kay Inc.Miracles Happen: The Life and Timeless Principles of the Founder of Mary Kay Inc. by Mary Kay Ash

I received this book from Mary Kay Inc in my starter kit and since I’m the type of person who wants to know everything, I started reading. Mary Kay Ash has a way of motivating you while telling of a harder time in American history. Her stories are wonderful, and very personal. This inspired me in a cheesy “I can do it all” kind of way. Mary Kay was born at a different time and struggled because she was woman. Because of this, she was inspired to create a new business to help other women. The model of business based on the golden rule was unique and most were skeptical. Her motto was God first, Family second, Career third. By putting everything in perspective, she was able to become very successful.

View all my reviews

Brooklyn Girls Review – ARC

Brooklyn GirlsBrooklyn Girls by Gemma Burgess
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

ARC from Goodreads.

I really liked this book. Pia just can’t get her life together and as a privileged young adult, her parents are on her case. I love living with roommates in my own life, and I’ve always wanted to live in New York. I could really relate to this book and the characters in it. It was kind of predictable, but it was an easy read. The only reason I didn’t give it 5 stars was because of the harsh language. I feel like a lot of it was unnecessary.

View all my reviews

Getting down to business

971847_10151680842167171_828824422_n
I recently embarked on a journey to get more out of life. My goal this summer was to get a handle or improve the following:

1. Personal Image
2. Money
3. Cultivating Friendships
4. Organize my life

Well, here’s my third installment of how I’m doing!

Sunday, July 28, 2013 I did something I never thought I’d do in a million years…I signed a new consultant contract with Mary Kay and my beautiful friend Olivia. It all started with the personal image part of my journey. I bought some makeup from Mary Kay because I’ve always loved the brand. Olivia was doing a “Spend it to End it” campaign and asked if I would do a party where proceeds could go to the End it Movement. Of course, I was thrilled because this was part of my cultivating friendships step. So on Sunday she came over and did her wonderful skin care party. There I was, about to make my 2nd purchase of almost $150 and it hit me – what if I became a consultant and did it for personal use? The starter kit was $100 so I went for it.

As soon as I received my welcome email I started looking through all the information and realized, I could actually do this. I talked to my financial adviser and decided I could invest a little money and actually make a business out of this. Lets see if this can click the money box.

As I made my first order I realized…where am I gonna put all this stuff? I have tons of scrapbook stuff left over from my last venture. So, I decided to sell it! No one is buying it yet, but I’m planning a yardsale soon and I’m getting everyone involved. There goes the organizing my life box! I’m on FIRE!

Financial Peace

Financial Peace: Restoring Financial Hope to You and Your FamilyFinancial Peace: Restoring Financial Hope to You and Your Family by Dave Ramsey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

First point – This book was a little outdated to be of much use. I was hoping to get into the envelope system more, but I think I’ll have to look elsewhere for that information. At this point in my life (single, just enough to pay necessities, student) I’m not seeing how I can squeeze anymore out and save for anything. I don’t really agree with his “no credit cards” stance because having credit cards can get you great deals with cash back and extra savings if paid off every month. Overall, I think I want to read some current information from Dave.

My second point – the reviews on this book are either LOVE or HATE. As I was reading I found it important to live your life by certain principles to even make this a viable option. As a single woman with no children I was reminded of values that I hold in high regards. One, choose who I marry wisely. If he can’t handle money beforehand, he wont be able to handle it after we are married either. This goes for me too. I need to learn these principles now. Two, and this has been my motto for years, don’t have children I can’t pay for, and with men that wont pay for them. This will set me up for financial failure. I think this is where some of the hate comes from with this book.

View all my reviews

Received Bill, Paid Bill

Recently I’ve been having a lot of trouble with finances. Basically, I’ve been spending more than I have. My mom tries to help me but she tends to freak out when things get overwhelming money-wise so she was just kind of frustrated with me in general. But July changed it all. I took 2 months off of school, my first break in a year, and decided I was going to accomplish some things in my time off. Here’s my list so far:

1. Personal Image (I talked a little about this in my last post)
2. Money
3. Cultivating Friendships
4. Organize my life

Since I’ve been working on number one a lot lately, I set July for the start of number two. So, I started a budget. First, lets back track a couple steps.

I’m a member of Paperbackswap.com and LOVE IT!!! I read a lot and I love the smell of old books and the feel of flipping pages. Since I was having so much trouble with money the last few months I decided it was time to break down and read some Dave Ramsey. Before now I never really had any money to budget so I figured it would be a lost cause to read it. I found one copy of an old publication of his book and decided that would be the one I read since it was free. The book came and the person who sent it to me even added $5 – mom pointed out this was to get me started saving – so I felt like I was already on top. I had heard wonderful things about Mint.com so I logged in and made a budget. Then I waited for July to roll around because I was already in the hole for June. July hit, my paycheck hit, and I started allocating money and paying bills. I love watching those little green lines go up and turn into yellow lines that show I’ve paid the bill for the month.
Now onto the bill paying part. I know I can’t pay all my medical bills, and my parents do help me some, so I put a couple of co-payments worth of money in my budget to start off with. Today, I got a bill. It was a small co-payment for some lab work and since I was already on top of printing my EOBs from my insurance company (a step into #4) I knew I owed it. So, I paid it. It feels so good to get a medical bill and be able to pay it. I feel like after all this time, I’m getting my adult-ness back. When your life derails into oblivion, to have this feeling again is like a weight off your shoulders.

I know it’s only been 5 days in but I’m doing very well. I did make some unintended purchases but before I made them I always thought, which little green line and I going to give up to make this purchase? If it wasn’t worth a green line, I put it down and walked away. Some things just aren’t worth it, some things are. I know I’ll have to tweak my budget in the next few months to get it where I want it to be, but right now I feel empowered. Life is on track and feeling good.

Mentioned in this post:

http://www.daveramsey.com/home/

http://www.paperbackswap.com/home.php

https://www.mint.com/

Finding Erin

People who know me know I’m not one to dress up or get all “dolled up”.  Recently I was asked to make a list of “My Beliefs”.  I didn’t know what this meant.  I included a few sections about spiritual beliefs, political beliefs, relational beliefs, and then I came to the section that I could only title “About Me”.  I had to be honest so I wrote down “I don’t think anyone is going to notice me anyways so why try” about my looks.  I wasn’t upset about this, it didn’t make me depressed – it just simply was.  It was how I lived my life since I hit puberty really.  I never do my hair – opting to pull it out if my face in a tight ponytail instead.  I owned some makeup for prom and such in high school but I’ve never worn it since.  My clothes used to be casual office attire when I worked in the business world, but lately they’ve changed to blue jeans and t-shirts.  I realized that not only did I not care, I didn’t think others who loved me cared either.

My boyfriend told me “I just want to take you out and you look nice and feel good about yourself.  Put on a skirt, do your hair, try.”  I realized he was right, I feel better when I’m considered beautiful.  Ok, so “You are a child of the King, God doesn’t make mistakes, Beauty is what’s inside” kept running through my head but on the outside I didn’t feel pretty.

In Spanish there are two ways to say most adjectives.  Beautiful is bonita, but you can say es bonita or está bonita.  Es bonita means she is beautiful in her soul, her spirit is beautiful, the kind of beauty God sees in us.  Está bonita means she is beautiful because she is wearing a beautiful dress, her hair is done, and she is pretty tonight.  I believe everyone is beautiful in the first way, but a girl just wants to be thought of as está bonita once in a while.

So i set out on a mission.  Get my flat, thin, frizzy, oily hair under some sense of control; and put some kind of color on my face.  Take more time than 5 mins to get ready.  Try.  As we all know, beauty products are EXPENSIVE, and I had none…zero.  I had a bottle of shampoo, not even any conditioner.  I set out to find deals and since I didn’t want to buy everything under the sun and try it, I did my research.  Pinterest and YouTube are now my best friends.  I’m sucked in and I kinda like feeling pretty.  There are still days that I don’t get out of my pj pants and t-shirts, and there are still days I go out without my hair done, but slowly I’m pulling stuff together.  I’m learning the things I never cared to know.  I love the compliments I get from my friends and loved ones, and when my boyfriend sends me texts back that say “looking good!” I get practically giddy.

I think I’m on the right track, and who knows, I might even learn to like myself a little better.

Nevermore – Novel of Love, Loss & Edgar Allan Poe

Nevermore -  Novel of Love, Loss, & Edgar Allan PoeNevermore – Novel of Love, Loss, & Edgar Allan Poe by David Niall Wilson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I won this book from the author and he sent me an autographed copy with an inscription made out to me. I was a little skeptical because I’m not normally interested in this genre, but I was willing to give it a go anyways. I’m so glad I did because I LOVED this book. I started out reading with a very critical eye and as soon as I got into the story-line, it won me over. The story was about Edgar meeting a lady (Lenore) in an inn in the Great Dismal Swamp and the magic that the two are blessed (cursed?) with. The writings of Poe were mixed in with Grimm’s Fairy Tales a a little bit of magic to make the plot line just a little bit more awesome. I carried this book everywhere and read a paragraph every time I could get one in. I couldn’t put it down. When I finished the book I immediately looked up Poe’s work just to refresh myself and see how the two tied together. Wilson has done a great job portraying his interpretation of what led to the writing of The Raven. This book is saying in my library for a long time!

View all my reviews