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Thursday, August 21

Musical Instrument Museum

You guys probably didn't know this (nor would it ever really be relevant) but there's a Musical Instrument Museum on Arizona. Nestled in the desert, this building might seem out of place... but the aesthetically pleasing architecture makes it seem natural in the desert landscape. 
Once inside, you see long curvy hallways that remind me of concert halls. Fitting, given the theme and in fact, the museum does host concerts quite often. Though there's a lot to see. I visited the majority of the museum in a few hours.

First, I started off in a room that sorted music by geographic location; we traveled the world through song and sound, learning about how all sorts of instruments evolved through time. 

 Then, we went to a room that featured a lot of modern artists. One of the coolest exhibits I saw was this Olympic Drum from the 2008 Beijing Olympics. I never realized it was so intricate up close. 

Lastly, after an entire day of being forbidden to touch the instruments, there was an interactive room. Bongos, drums, gongs, a theramin and even an automated machine were available to play with.

If you're looking for an event to do with parents or young kids, I highly recommend this. There was a surprising number of young adults just wandering the halls alone, too. Very fun to visit at least once!

Anything similar in you area? Or is the Musical Instrument Museum one of a kind? 

Monday, August 4

Revlon Matte Lipstick in Standout Review

When I opened this lipstick, I was immediately struck by how similar to a large chubby crayon it looked. But when I put it to my lips, it made a very defined red line. 250 Standout was much brighter than I'd ever thought it could be. The pigmentation of this lipstick made me nervous. Would it be hard to put wear? What if I drew outside of the lines? Despite my fears, I continued applying the gorgeous cool toned red color. Its matte finish doesn't accentuate dry lips as much as I thought it would. 

Overall, I have a pretty positive reaction to the product. However, I do have two major complaints. The first is that this lipstick transfers. Don't plan on having this lipstick stay on if you're going to be kissing someone (even a light peck on the cheek) or eating. If you don't accidentally transfer though, the lipstick lasts a few hours and leaves a nice stain effect. My second issue is more personal. I think, having an olive undertone and warm skin, this exact shade of red was not right for me. However, I am a pretty big fan of the application, which is very creamy. I also like the feeling of it on my lips which is quite moisturizing.  

The search for a perfect red continues!

Monday, July 21

Haley's Heavenly Scents

I first ordered from this site about a year ago. You can read about the scents that I ordered here. I enjoyed this site so much that I thought I'd order again. Her shipping time is by no means fast (she took a month to get these out to me) but to me, the pluses outweigh the minuses. She has a TON of scents, various lovely shapes and she's always always affordable. 

Let me share what I got this time!

Peeps - Sugar, sugar, sugar... and perhaps a bit of marshmallow. This smells sweet and bright. It perks you up wonderfully with a bit of a sugar rush, but isn't cloyingly sweet. 

Creme Brulee - You might expect this to be super sweet but while it is definitely a desert scent, it's more of a subdued caramel scent. Much more sophisticated than the Peeps smell. 

Apple Cinnamon - A great cinnamon scent that's not to harsh on the nose. It's sweet, but not overwhelming at all since the apple adds a bit of tartness. A perfect scent for the fall (or to remind you of the fall). 

Rosemary Mint - Ugh. I don't like this one at all. That's not the fault of Haley's though... Unfortunately, I had to purchase this to discover that I really don't like the rosemary scent. 

Toasted Marshmellow - Since this is another sweet dessert scent, I don't really distinguish it too much from Creme Brulee. If any difference, I'd only notice the lack of a caramel scent. 

Overall, my favorites have to be the apple cinnamon (tart + sweet make a great combination) and the Creme Brulee for when I just want a really nice sweet scent. 

Thursday, July 10

Featuring... Blush Colored Shorts

Do you ever NEED to have a certain item... then time passes and you look at an old wishlist and wonder... why did I ever want this? Despite all those items that I'm really happy I find after a good long while, I'm not sure why I ever wanted a pair of blush colored shorts!
Featuring...Blush Colored Shorts

Tokidoki cotton t shirt / Belted shorts, $19 / Rupert Sanderson / Cath Kidston , $54 / Pendant necklace

I suppose, ultimately, I'm happy that I didn't get these shorts. Maybe if I got them, I'd be sick of them already.

Thursday, June 26

Seattle Vacation Recap Day 3 & 4

For parts one and two of my recap, please click on the links! On the third day, we went to Seatown Seabar for breakfast. I thought it was the prettiest place... located right across from the Sound and very close to Pike Place Market. I had heard about this place from Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations video... so like that video recommended, I ordered the dungeness crab breakfast sandwich. It was very good, though I thought it could have used more crab. 

My companion was boring and ordered eggs with bacon, toast and hash browns. 

After breakfast, we took a detour to suburban Seattle to find where my boyfriend had lived years ago. From there, we went on a nature trip to Summit Lake. After driving what seemed like FOREVER, I realized that we had to travel on a little dirt road for many miles before we could actually start hiking. I didn't want to do that so we took some pictures at the foot of the mountain and some other ones up another nearby mountain (no idea the name). Seattle is crazy, stupid beautiful. 

Afterwards, we drove back and watched the sunset by the Sound.

For dinner, we went to a local brewery so our resident beer enthusiast could be satisfied. Beer was had. My traveling companion got a lamb burger and I got an appetizer with mussels and clams. I seriously cannot get enough of that rich buttery sauce. On the other hand, my partner does want to make it known that he was not a fan of his "tzatziki burger" as the sauce was too strong. 

After dinner, we went to the Dahlia Lounge. I rarely go to bars and even more rarely do I drink at them, but on vacation, I loved the classy atmosphere of the Dahlia Lounge. No pictures from there... because reasons. 

The next morning, we had a few free hours before the flight, so I took a quick trip to the Space Needle. I got my obligatory Space Needle picture, went on a search for the Pie Shop, ordered delicious Chicken Pot and Shepard's Pie as well as Strawberry Rhubarb dessert. We ate lunch while watching the waves on the Sound and went back to the hotel to pack.

And so concludes our trip to Seattle. Until next time!

Tuesday, June 17

7% Solution: Tabula Rasa

via weheartit

It's at moments like this when I get nostalgic. I'm sitting in front of the airport gate about to go to Los Angeles then to London, then to Scotland. It's eerily quiet in the airport. There are only three others waiting with me. I'm having a moment of clarity, because I feel like it's taken me a lot to get to this moment. What exactly?

a break up

Possibly the biggest life event to happen to me. More life changing than graduation or getting a job. It's been hard of course, but it's definitely one of those experiences where you learn things about yourself. Namely, that I keep no secrets. Not from this blog, work friends who don't give a crap, or any of my close personal friends. Not having that support system will definitely be strange, but hey, it's no divorce. This has really forced me to become more of my own person and to explore what my life goals are. I guess on this blog, you can look forward to more life exploration, goal development and maybe even a dating post or two. 

moving apartments

This is a follow up of the first event. I've lived in a college town for six years now and I desperately want a change. First, in Phoenix, but eventually, I want to move out of Arizona all together. San Francisco is very high on my list. Looking for another place to move has proved very difficult. I've searched through uptown, midtown, downtown and in a local area called "Biltmore". I've tried to room with my friends and by myself... and even with strangers on Craigslist. I leave on this trip having applied for a beautiful 2 bedroom loft apartment in midtown with a Craigslist roommate. I'm still waiting to see, but hopefully, I'll move after my trip. Look forward to apartment decorations and interior design posts! 

work work work

Most of May was very light on the work for me, but it really picked up and got crazy at the end. This year so far, I've been coping with work. I'd really like to decide what I want to do in the long term (or maybe in the next two years). In addition to the personal development posts, professional development posts may be popping up. 

It's been uncharacteristically quiet in the last month on the blog for these reasons listed above. But there's nothing like an international trip to pick yourself back up and tackle life with a renewed fervor. 

Thursday, May 15

BornPretty Wrist Watch

Born Pretty asked me to review a wrist watch... after some decision time, I decided on the Rhinestoned Metallic Watch.  Though I know of Born Pretty as a nail art/accessory seller, they're branching out to sell watches! The various types of women's watches which include the wrist watch (like the one I got), dainty bracelet watch, and unique LED watch

My boyfriend got this package and opened it for me. He texted me a picture and my first opinion was definitely that the watch was gorgeous. It looked luxurious (despite being very cheap) and as an accessory/fashion piece, it works very well. When I got home... I realized how large the watch is. Not only does it not fit on my regularly sized female wrist, it doesn't even fit on my boyfriend's wrist! 

While that doesn't mean that the watch was faulty or unattractive in any way, it's definitely something to watch out for. If you get a nice watch at a low price... are you also prepared to get some links removed? Personally, for me, it's not worth the hassle.

Use the code LAURAHC10 to get 10% off!