Monday, August 31, 2020

Amazon Prime Purchases in August

 * This post contains affiliate links. When you click a link, it is no cost to you and I make a small commission (pennies) from it. Thank you for supporting Sparkles and Lattes.

So after last months bigger Amazon month, I had another small month. I just went to Target more this month I guess. Or I don't guess, I know as I have seen my red card bill. But I did buy a few things. What did you buy this month?
Prime Purchases

linking up with Tanya

Shiatsu Massager

As I mentioned in a Friday Favorites post, I bought this massager. I have been running and working out and my muscles have been really sore. This massager has been a dream. I can wrap it around my calf for awhile and then move it to my shoulders, etc. It is totally worth the price and purchase.

Folex Instant Carpet Spot Remover

I saw everyone raving about this stuff on Instagram and how it gets stains out of everything. The girls have a few ink stains on their clothes and I wanted to see if it would work. It lightened them up, but they are not gone. BUT those stains have been on these clothes for weeks now and have been pre-treated a bunch. I did use it on my dining room chairs and it got all the stains out. I also used it on my nightgown that had blood from a mole removal and it came right now.

Neilmed Sinus Rinse 100 Pack

This is something that I purchase about every few months. Ever since having nose surgery, I do the sinus rinse once a day and it is amazing and keeps my nose open and clean.

SweatyRocks Women's Sleeveless Tank

Lastly, I bought another one of those tanks that I bought last month, but this time I got it in black. I love that tank so much and it has already been worn many times. I got it in black and I plan on getting it in another color too.

Friday, August 28, 2020

Friday Favorites and Happenings

  *This post contains affiliate links. When you click a link, it is no cost to you and I make a small commission (pennies) from it. Thank you for supporting Sparkles and Lattes.

We survived another week and another month. August flew by for me, but it usually does. We just always have a lot going on. Plus we usually try to squeeze in as many beach days as possible before Fall hits and the weather changes.

Onto Friday Favorites and Happenings.

ONE. I forgot to mention that a couple weeks ago, I was shopping in town and found Birkenstock's on sale. That NEVER happens, so I grabbed a pair. I got ones with a soft footbed because I hate breaking shoes. Especially Birkenstocks. These ones are so cute too. I have been wearing them pretty much daily if I can get away with it.

Rory said he can't wait until Winter when I wear these with socks. UMMMM nope. That is not happening. First, who wears sandals during the winter? And second, why would anyone wear sandals with socks. That is a big no no. Do you wear sandals with socks?

Birkenstock Florida Soft Footbed (in Mocha)

TWO. Last week, Bri talked about getting some dark chocolate coconut mini bars at Costco and how much her husband and one of her kids loved them. Since I was already planning on going to Costco, I thought I would try them out for myself. I LOVE Mounds bars and anything coconut, so these were a must. 

Unreal Dark Chocolate Coconut Bars

Verdict? They are amazing. I have been snacking on them all week and need to get another two bags as back up just in case Costco stops selling them. I put them in the fridge and it is a nice little treat.

THREE. Recently, I went to Total Wine (a warehouse liquor store) and bought some wine for myself and my parents. My dad asked me to get some of my favorite bottles of wine and some new ones that I thought he might like. 

When I was there, I grabbed him many bottles and one of them was my go-to favorite Meiomi. It is a Pinot Noir that my bestie Nathalie introduced me to. I LOVE this wine. It is reasonably priced (around $16 a bottle), easy to drink, crowd pleasing, great during any season and pairs well with most foods. If you can find this wine around where you live, try it. And no this isn't sponsored. I just love the wine.

Meiomi Pinot Noir

FOUR. I got this tank recently online and it is amazing. It has a crop feel to it, BUT it is still long enough to tough the top of my mid rise jeans. Yes, I tried on jeans recently and thank goodness they still fit. Anyways, I got this on sale for 30% off because why pay full price. It is a great basic and I plan to wear it in the Fall with cardigans. 

A&F Seamless Soft Tank

FIVE. Weekly funnies.

Have a great weekend. I am linking up with A Little Bit of Everything and Becky.

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

What's Up Wednesday

 *This post contains affiliate links. When you click a link, it is no cost to you and I make a small commission (pennies) from it. Thank you for supporting Sparkles and Lattes.

August went by entirely too quick. I think it was all the excitement with school starting, making decisions about how we will proceed with the girls schooling, a little Graeagle vacation and celebrating birthdays and anniversaries. But we are looking forward to September. Hopefully we will have some cooler weather, football (not my college conference, but at least there will be some football), all things Fall and a full school month.

Anyways, onto this month's What's Up Wednesday...What's Up Wednesday
Sunday: We went out to Mexican with my parents.
Monday: I had sushi with a friend.
Tuesday: Sweet Potato Nachos with Turkey
Wednesday: Stuffed Shells with a Salad
Thursday: Sausages with Air Fryer Onion Rings
Friday: Unsure
Saturday: Unsure

WHAT I'M REMINISCING ABOUT... My wedding. We celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary this month. I didn't really do a post on it because I do one each year and they are very similar. But know that we did Thai take out on our actual anniversary and then we went out to a nice dinner a few days later.

But it is crazy to see how fast 7 years has been. And we have been together for almost 11 years.

WHAT I'M LOVING... I am still loving my new neck/back/leg massager. This thing is amazing and worth it.

WHAT WE'VE BEEN UP TO...Not too much. We have been going to the beach a bit, hanging out with friends a tiny bit, getting ready for school to start, having the girls start Kindergarten, we went to Graeagle again, celebrated my 7th wedding anniversary and my birthday.

WHAT I'M DREADING... Nothing really. Or maybe the fact that college football won't be back this year. Or it will but in a limited capacity. My conference is not even playing this year. So no home football games, no tailgating, no traveling for football games, etc. It breaks my heart to see everything that has been cancelled.

WHAT I'M WORKING ON... Just work and blogging mostly.

WHAT I'M EXCITED ABOUT... The girls started Kindergarten. And while I am still a bit worried about what the future holds, I am very excited for them to go to school. As I have said in a previous post, we chose a private school route for this year and then next year they will go back to public school.

But the girls had their first day on Monday and they loved it. They loved their teacher and teacher's assistant. They were a bit nervous in the morning, but when we picked them up from school, they told us all about their first day and said they get to go to school tomorrow (Tuesday) and they couldn't wait.

WHAT I'M WATCHING/READING... This last month I read three books and you can read my reviews here. I am currently reading You Are Not Alone by Greer Hendricks and Sara Pekkanen.

As for tv shows, we haven't been watching as much. There isn't much on. We watch Million Dollar Listing LA and then we watched Reckoning on Netflix and are currently watching Rectify. They have the same main actor in it and so far I have enjoyed both of them.

BUT I need more shows to watch, so send me your recommendations. I have Hulu, Netflix, and Disney Plus.

WHAT I'M LISTENING TO... My Roomba clean the house.

WHAT I'M WEARING... Well I have been using/wearing my new purse from Madewell and I LOVE it. It is big enough, but not oversized. And having the crossbody strap is amazing for when I grocery shop and don't want to put my purse in the cart.
Madewell Medium Transport Tote

This tank has been on repeat a lot lately. I wear it with the skirt below (and my other one in green) and then with several pairs of shorts. I want to get another one of these, but in black.
SweatyRocks Women's Sleeveless Button Up Tank

This skirt has also been on repeat. You can wear it as an everyday skirt or for girls night like I did here.

WHAT I'M DOING THIS WEEKEND... The girls have their first golf lesson! They have a program here called 1st Tee where they learn to play golf for 9 weeks. Each class is for one hour, outside, and they provide my girls with all the clubs that they need. Other than that, maybe the beach, but we have so many fires going on that I am not sure if we will get up there or not due to the smoke.

WHAT I'M LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT MONTH... September brings football, Fall, cozy sweaters and leggings. We usually have football games to look forward to, but this year is just different. We don't have much planned for next month either. 

WHAT ELSE IS NEW... Nothing much.

Monday, August 24, 2020

Show Me Your Books - August

 *This post contains affiliate links. When you click a link, it is no cost to you and I make a small commission (pennies) from it. Thank you for supporting Sparkles and Lattes.

August was a good book reading month for me. I finished three books and started on my fourth, but didn't get done before this blog was posted. I did get a few books all at once and I started one (Columbine), but just couldn't finish it. I think it will take me a bit to get through that one. 

What did you read this month?

This was another book on my TBR list. I had it on hold before it even came out this year. I am a huge Riley Sager fan, so I knew I wanted to read this book.

The book is about a family who moves into a haunted house. They live there for about 20 something days and leave. Ewan writes a book about what happened to them at the haunted house and it has stuck with them forever. Fast forward 25 years and Maggie is an adult and her father has just passed away. She is left with money and the house that they abandoned 25 years ago. But why hadn't her family sold it when it was so haunted that they left and her dad wrote a very successful book off of it?

Maggie plans to renovate the house and sell it. But as she stays at the house, she sees that her dads book was telling the truth. This book has plagued her her whole life. She hated the book and never believed it. But she slowly starts to remember things. But it isn't all that it seems.

The book goes back and forth between present day and 25 years ago. I did enjoy the book. I think I have liked some of his other books more, but this was still a good one. I would give this 4 stars.

Here is Amazon's synopsis:

What was it like? Living in that house.

Maggie Holt is used to such questions. Twenty-five years ago, she and her parents, Ewan and Jess, moved into Baneberry Hall, a rambling Victorian estate in the Vermont woods. They spent three weeks there before fleeing in the dead of night, an ordeal Ewan later recounted in a nonfiction book called House of Horrors. His tale of ghostly happenings and encounters with malevolent spirits became a worldwide phenomenon, rivaling The Amityville Horror in popularity—and skepticism.

Today, Maggie is a restorer of old homes and too young to remember any of the events mentioned in her father's book. But she also doesn’t believe a word of it. Ghosts, after all, don’t exist. When Maggie inherits Baneberry Hall after her father's death, she returns to renovate the place to prepare it for sale. But her homecoming is anything but warm. People from the past, chronicled in House of Horrors, lurk in the shadows. And locals aren’t thrilled that their small town has been made infamous thanks to Maggie’s father. Even more unnerving is Baneberry Hall itself—a place filled with relics from another era that hint at a history of dark deeds. As Maggie experiences strange occurrences straight out of her father’s book, she starts to believe that what he wrote was more fact than fiction.

The Guest List - Lisa FoleyThe Guest List - Lisa FoleyThis has been on my reading list for quite some time. One of my blogger friends even wrote about it a few weeks ago and said how good it was. Well she was right. This was a good one. 

This book takes place mostly out on a small island off of Ireland. This is an old island that is supposedly haunted, as people have perished in the bogs. Jules is a successful blogger who turned her blog into a magazine. Her fiance, Will, is a star of a survival reality TV show. They plan to marry on this island as no one has ever done that before and Jules wants to be the first.

Will's friends arrive on the island and we start to find out about their past when they were in high school and at uni. Everything unfolds as the book goes on and we start to see who people really are.

The book goes back and forth between several characters from the point of when they were going to the island and all the way through the wedding night. We know someone has died during the wedding night, but we don't know who until almost the end of the book.

At the end, so many surprises come out. I had guessed little ones throughout the book, but the end was just full of them. This is definitely a must read. I give it 5 stars.

Here is Amazon's synopsis:

The bride – The plus one – The best man – The wedding planner  – The bridesmaid – The body

On an island off the coast of Ireland, guests gather to celebrate two people joining their lives together as one. The groom: handsome and charming, a rising television star. The bride: smart and ambitious, a magazine publisher. It’s a wedding for a magazine, or for a celebrity: the designer dress, the remote location, the luxe party favors, the boutique whiskey. The cell phone service may be spotty and the waves may be rough, but every detail has been expertly planned and will be expertly executed.

But perfection is for plans, and people are all too human. As the champagne is popped and the festivities begin, resentments and petty jealousies begin to mingle with the reminiscences and well wishes. The groomsmen begin the drinking game from their school days. The bridesmaid not-so-accidentally ruins her dress. The bride’s oldest (male) friend gives an uncomfortably caring toast.

And then someone turns up dead. Who didn’t wish the happy couple well? And perhaps more important, why?

This book gave me a nightmare the first night I read it (while in Graeagle). This book starts off with a mom at the Seattle Pike Place Market and while she is texting her husband, she lets go of her four year old sons hand and he goes missing. The only evidence they have is that he was taken by Santa (a few days before Christmas) and given the lollipop that he was about to get from a fancy candy store at the market. They have surveillance of him leaving, but nothing else. As you can see, that is why it kept me up the first night. It is every parents worse nightmare.

But I kept reading and had to know what happened to Sebastian. As the story unfolds, it just blows your mind what people are capable of. This is a great book, but it tugs at your heart, so beware. I would give this book 4 1/2 to 5 stars.

Here is Amazon's synopsis:

ll it takes to unravel a life is one little secret...

Marin had the perfect life. Married to her college sweetheart, she owns a chain of upscale hair salons, and Derek runs his own company. They're admired in their community and are a loving family—until their world falls apart the day their son Sebastian is taken.

A year later, Marin is a shadow of herself. The FBI search has gone cold. The publicity has faded. She and her husband rarely speak. She hires a P.I. to pick up where the police left off, but instead of finding Sebastian, she learns that Derek is having an affair with a younger woman. This discovery sparks Marin back to life. She's lost her son; she's not about to lose her husband, too. Kenzie is an enemy with a face, which means this is a problem Marin can fix.

Friday, August 21, 2020

Friday Favorites and Happenings

 *This post contains affiliate links. When you click a link, it is no cost to you and I make a small commission (pennies) from it. Thank you for supporting Sparkles and Lattes.

Did anyone else feel like this week was a bit chaotic? My girls didn't even start school this week and I just felt like I was ultra busy. Between school shopping, a doctor's appointment, getting things ready for school next week and work, I was just downright busy.

Onto Friday Favorites and Happenings.

ONE. Last weekend I took the girls shopping for their first day of Kindergarten outfits. Since they are in a private school this year (we chose to pay for private school this year to hopefully avoid things being shut down and let our kids have a bit more freedom), they can wear what they want. They will probably have uniforms next year though.

So we went to H&M and I let them pick out what they wanted with a little guidance. We were there for over an hour just trying to find the perfect outfits. One girl would find her outfit, and then the other would change hers because she wanted something similar. And I had to tell them that they could be the same outfit, but different colors because we don't want their teacher having a harder time figuring out who is who. 

So what did they chose?
Yellow Skirt (unavailable on H&M online)  |  Pink skirt

TWO. Here are some other items that we bought the girls for Back to School. As you can see, my girls are really into skirts and dresses.

THREE. Can we talk about what a disappointment the Nordstrom sale has been this year? They let all the high income bloggers buy everything up before anyone else can and then they try it on, gives us a swipe up link and then return most of their stuff, but we can't buy any of it because it is sold out. 

I am just a card holder and was able to shop on Thursday August 13th. I had my wish list which I shared with you all. I had planned to buy a few items that I knew I would love and where all the time. Problem is, most of it was gone by the time I got in right away Thursday morning. BS!

I keep checking back to see if they restock any of the items and I hope they do when the sale opens up to the public (it did yesterday). I did grab a few items, but not my top choices. I will be trying them on and letting you know truthfully if I plan to keep or return the items.

Did you get anything you wanted from the Nordstrom sale?

FOUR. This week I went in for a check-up at my doctor's office to see how things were going with a recent surgery. So my surgery in February was a success and things were looking great BUT she noticed right away that I have an umbilical hernia AGAIN.

If you have been reading here for awhile, then you know that I have had two umbilical hernia surgeries before. I had one in June 2015 (I talk a bit about it here) and again in February 2016. The first time was due to having twins. The girls pushed my belly button way out and moved all my insides around, so I got a hernia. It happens a lot with bigger pregnancies. Fast forward and that one either did not take or I had a double hernia that just was never found. So I got it fixed again.

Everything has been great since then. But about 6 months to a year ago (I lost track), I noticed the top of my belly button protruding out and when I push on it, it hurts. I knew something was up, but I have been through so many surgeries that I chose to ignore it.

When I saw my doctor, she noticed it immediately. She said you have a hernia on top of your belly button. I told her my history and she said this one is different because the others were in my belly button. This one is on top of my belly button, so it is new and not from the others. And she did an examination on it and when she was poking and pinching things, she said she could feel my bowels (intestines) protruding and that has to be fixed as I can cut off the supply to my bowels and be in a world of hurt. 

So she has put in a request for surgery and authorization through my insurance and hopefully it will be approved soon. BUT I don't want to get it until October, so I can go to Mexico and not worry about going into the pool. 

FIVE. Weekly funnies.

Have a great weekend. I am linking up with A Little Bit of Everything and Becky.