2017 Year in Review

2017 had to be one of the best years I’ve had in a long time. I graduated college with two Bachelor’s, attended the American Dance Festival (which I always wanted to do!), landed some professional performance jobs, landed some great teaching jobs, invested a lot of time into my blog, went to Disney, got engaged!!, and I was basically able to get ahead on a lot of the goals I set for after college. I’d say 2017 was a very successful year, and one in which I will always look back on fondly.

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I am excited to see what lies ahead for 2018, and I think the new year will bring a lot of positive changes and good experiences. I am certain I will be persistant in the pursuit of my goals and dreams, and will not settle for anything less than what I want and deserve. 2017 was a year of dance, adventure, love, movement, and progress, and I resolve to make 2018 even better!

Did you have a progressive 2017? What are you looking forward to most in the new year? Let me know!

Xoxo

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Engagement Story

Hi everyone! Happy New Years Eve!

I am sorry I’ve been so quiet on the blog. The last two weeks, my boyfriend-now-fiance was home for holiday block leave. If you don’t know this already, my fiance is in the military and has been for almost three years now. We have been dating for three years, and on December 14, he proposed to me! It has been a crazy two weeks, but I wanted to tell you all how it happened!

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I’ve always known my fiance because our families have been friends for years. We grew up seeing each other occasionally at his grandmother’s house. I always had a crush on him, but never told him. I live on a lake, so d uring the summer of 2014 he was using the lake to train for the military because his town pool was closed for renovations. I came home from working at a day camp one day that summer, and I saw him for the first time in a couple of years on my dock (handsome as ever BY THE WAY). The next morning, I saw a Facebook friend request from him, and from there the rest is history.

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He decided to propose to me on the dock right where we saw each other before we started dating. His family and my family tricked me into thinking we were just going to dinner, and that we were just going outside to get a quick picture. Turns out, they wanted a picture because he proposed to me! It was so sweet, and it is a day I will always remember!

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I was so excited the day it happened, and now I am even more excited to know I am going to spend my life with my best friend! We spent the last week of his leave looking at some potential venues and gathering prices for different vendors to see roughly how much we have to save for our wedding day. What we are finding out is that weddings, even when done on the cheap, are still super expensive.

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If any of you fellow bloggers and followers have any ideas or hacks to save money for your wedding day, please please PLEASE let me know! ❀ We need and appreciate any and all help and advice we can get! Whenever my fiance and I do decide to start planning a wedding for real, I will definitely be posting wedding planning updates on the blog!

I hope your holidays were spent with your loved ones, and were very merry and bright! Stay safe tonight, and happy New Year! Let’s start 2018 with a positive mindset and plenty of goals!!!

xoxox

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Bath and Body Works Black Friday Order

Hello beautiful people!

I wanted to show you all what I bought at Bath and Body Works over Black Friday weekend! I bought some hand soaps, Wallflower refills, and body sprays! I repurchased some favorite scents, and tried a bunch of new ones!

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Bath and Body Works had $5 Fine Fragrance Mists Black Friday weekend, so naturally I picked up my favorite – Magic in the Air – and on my sister’s recommendation I ordered Coconut Mint Drop to try! I needed a new body spray to throw in my backpack for after work and rehearsal, and this scent smells tropical and wintery at the same time! Who knew there would be a scent with that combination? It’s different than what I normally like, but I enjoy it!

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As for hand soaps, I chose a yummy Cinnamon Caramel Swirl soap, and Arctic Berry soap for the holidays! You cannot go wrong with the holiday hand soaps because they all smell delicious!

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For the Wallflower refills, I choose Fireside Marshmallow, Vanilla Patchouli, and Frankincense! I think I will enjoy the marshmallow scent the best, but the other two seem like they would be good.

I was a little disappointed because my order took a long time to ship, but I am so excited my me and my room will be smelling really nice throughout the holiday season! πŸ™‚ Did you take advantage of any of the amazing sales Bath and Body Works had Black Friday weekend? What are your favorite scents?

xoxo

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Nutcracker Week – Sugar Plum Fun Palette Review

Hi everyone! It is OFFICIALLY Nutcracker season, and since my Nutcracker performances are this week, expect some dance-related posts! I am so excited to be dancing in my Nutcracker, and I cannot wait to take photos in my costumes and share some Nutcracker history with all of you! Nonetheless, I figured I would start this week by sharing my review of my Sugar Plum Fun palette from TooFaced and HSN.

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If you have no idea what this set is, please refer to my first post (TooFaced SugarPlum Fairy Makeup Set)Β to get an idea of what this set is and where to buy it. I was so excited for this set, and I am sure y’all are wondering if it lived up to the hype. This set included the Sugar Plum Fun palette, a full-sized 24-hour Shadow Insurance eyeshadow primer, a full-sized Better than Sex Mascara, and a full-size Lip Creme in the shade Sugar Fairy.

Of course the packaging is to die for with the foiled writing and the beautiful fairy design! Upon opening the package, I was met with the palette and the three full-sized extras! I took out the palette and immediately looked at the back to the cute description on the back of the palette. Click the images to enlarge them and read what it says.

Inside of the palette I found the beautiful decor around the large mirror (which is amazing!). Then there are four quadrants of different eyeshadows that are curated to be worn together! The colors are pretty neutral minus a few glitters and the dark plum color. I swatched all of the colors below without using the 24-hour Shadow Insurance eyeshadow primer that came with the set. I was disappointed that a lot of the pretty matte shades are so powdery that without a primer they are almost not noticeable to the eye. The first image includes the top two rows, and the second image includes the last two.

Most of these eyeshadows are better applied wet and with a great eyeshadow primer or base on. I have found my favorite shades to be Metal Petal, Tutus and Tiaras, and Magic Fairy. They are the ones I reach for the most, and they give a better color payoff then some of the other shades. The 24-hour Eyeshadow Primer is good, but it doesn’t work as well as I hoped. I’ve found drug store eyeshadow primers to work just as well, if not better, than this one. But I will end up using the whole product because I am always using eyeshadow primer.

The matte lip creme in Sugar Fairy has to be the biggest disappointment in this set. I know with gift sets companies like to keep the color scheme neutral, however, this set is Nutcracker themed. And in the Nutcracker, there is no “Sugar Fairy”, the character is the “Sugar PLUM Fairy”. This formula for the lipstick does not sit well with the texture of my lips. Instead of applying smooth, it applies patchy and doesn’t make one cohesive color. It is also so creamy it smudges super easily. I wish they included a PLUM shade in a matte or semi-matte finish because it would make more sense with the set theme (**cough cough SUGAR PLUM cough cough**), and because the darker color is better for winter. This color is nice, but for something this light, the formula falls apart on my actual mouth. I am going to try to apply this lipstick using different lip primers and techniques and see if anything else works. But straight on the mouth, this lipstick is not great.

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As a whole, I would give this set a 3 out of 5 star rating (0 being the worst and 5 being the best). It is ok for a gift set, and for the price (I paid their special doorbuster price of $49 plus free shipping) it is definitely worth buying and checking out for yourself. Some of the shadows require a bit finessing to get them to apply evenly and smooth, and the lipstick may work better with your lip texture than it does with mine.

Nonetheless, if you’re a sucker for packaging and you love dance/ballet/theNutcracker you will be over-joyed to receive this set. It is so fun, and is very festive for the holiday season. This set is also a wonderful gift idea for the beauty-lover in your life, or for someone who is just starting to play with makeup and eyeshadow who wants a neutral set to experiment with. I will continue to play with it, and definitely use it for my Nutcracker performances this weekend! ❀ I will be posting looks and Nutcracker photos on my Instagram, so make sure to follow me @julias_leaps_of_faith!

I hope you enjoyed this in-depth review and have fun playing with your holiday makeup!

Until next time, Happy Nutcracker season!

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Bye for Now Ipsy Subscritpion

I am so sad to be writing this post. I decided I am going to stop my Ipsy subscription for now. I love Ipsy as a service, and they have great customer service representatives who are always more than willing to help fix any problems. As a whole, the business is an AMAZING one. However, I feel like after a year and 8 months (March 2016-November 2017), I’ve been receiving many of the same products, many products in similar colors they already sent me, products in colors I’ve specified in reviews I did not like, or repeats of products I already own. If you’ve noticed, I’ve stopped reviewing my glambags on here because I have not been very excited about the last few bags I received.

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Furthermore, I feel like I have so many of their little bags that I am actually running out of room in my makeup drawer because of it! I love the little bags because some of them are SO CUTE and perfect to throw in a purse. But the bags are hit or miss. Many times, the designs are strange or not cute and I don’t really have a use for it after I’ve opened it to see all of my products for the month.

Nonetheless, Ipsy has introduced me to many new products I love, which led me to go out and buy full-size versions myself! I am very satisfied with my time as a customer, and like I said I will be back to Ipsy eventually! But for now, a break is much needed.

In the meantime, what are your favorite beauty subscriptions? Do you like Ipsy? Which other one’s should I try?

xoxo

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