Monday, May 31, 2021

Amazon Prime Purchases - May

*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. 

It's time for another round of Prime Purchases. I didn't much at all this month. I feel like May was either a month of buying stuff in stores or not buying much at all.

So what did we buy this last month?

linking up with Tanya

So four items were repurchase items...

No Poreblem Primer

I love this stuff. I say I will try something else out, but I get such a good price on this on Amazon and it works so well.

NeilMed Sinus Rinse

I have purchased this set 4 times and the 100 pack minus the bottle even more. Every 3ish months you should replace the bottle, so every 3ish months I grab this pack and get 50 packets with it. I use this every single day and it keeps my sinuses cleared out and let's me breath normally. My ENT doctor was surprised I use it daily since many people don't like it. BUT I LOVE it. It works so well.

Mrs. Meyers Laundry Detergent

I love this laundry detergent, but I don't love how quickly I go through it. Yes we do many loads of laundry. But I love this scent and it is easier and cheaper to buy it on Amazon.

Nespresso VertuoLine Vanilla Custard Pie

Since I am going back into the office, I needed to re-up my Nespresso pods supply. I have a few at home left, but this is my favorite flavor by far. And ordering on Amazon is super convenient.

Dog Carrier

We bought this dog carrier to test out driving to my in-laws mountain home. We wanted to see if we gave Walter his anxiety medicine and used this carrier if we could make the 4 hour drive. I love that it has mesh sides on all sides, so he can see out. And I love that it has a little bed in it for him. I got the large size which fits longer dogs and up to 25 lbs. Walter is only 17 lbs, but he is a long pup. That is the dachshund in him.

See a very light month. But as we gear up for Summer, I am sure we will have more purchases.
Friday, May 28, 2021

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.

Happy Friday all! We have so much new stuff going on in our lives since I wrote my blog post that posted on Wednesday. Lots of medical stuff. And just life in general.

Onto, Friday favorites and happenings.

ONE. First medical update. About a year ago I told you all that Sutton had a cyst on her head. We found it last year when we went to Graeagle and thought it was a bug bite. But it never went away. We took her to the pediatrician and then the dermatologist. They told us it was a cyst and that it would never go away, but as long as it wasn't bothering her to just let it be. 

Well it started bothering her again a few months back, so I got her another referral from the dermatologist to a general surgeon. The same office that I had my DR and hernia repair at. Well Wednesday was her appointment and she needs a minor surgery. Since she is so young and it is her head, they are going to put her under. It will be a 20 minute surgery to remove the cyst and everything in it and then close her up. 

The doctor said they don't have to cut or shave her hair and it will be very easy to fix. She said this is our best course of action since it will only get bigger, hurt more and bother her more. So she has surgery on Thursday June 17th. So please keep my little lady in your prayers.

TWO. Second medical update. I had an appointment Tuesday afternoon with my ENT. It was a yearly check up on the button in my nose. If you remember, I had a silicone button put into my septum because after two surgeries, it created a hole. It is very common. Anyways, the button looks amazing and hasn't moved. 

But I told him that I have had excess mucus/congestion like I was sick without being sick since I had covid. I have also had major headaches since then. So he did an in house CT Scan and told me that my sinuses are majorly inflamed and closed up. He said I was the fourth patient he had seen that day who had sinus issues in the past, got covid and it brought them back.

So with my insurance, they require a few steps before surgery. Which hopefully I can avoid. I am on a very heavy dose of antibiotics and steroids. I have to take these for 2 weeks. And it is a crazy schedule. One pill is twice a day and the other I take 6 pills for 5 days, 5 pills for 4 days, 3 pills for 3 days, 1 pill for two days. I had to put it in my calendar because that is hard to remember. Anyways, I take them for 2 weeks, then call them to see how I am doing. 

If I am a bit better or not better at all, then I have to go on another dose. If I am way better, then do nothing. If after my second dose and I am not completely better and my CT Scan doesn't show major improvement then I have to have another minor in house surgery. Not as extensive as my last sinus surgery and recovery is only a day or so. So fingers crossed these steroids and antibiotics help.

THREE. Last weekend I bought two bathing suits. One in person and one online. I saw the one that I bought online in person but they didn't have my size and it was over $150 for the set. I got it online for about $102. Still a lot, but better. Anyways, I am waiting for the online one to arrive today to see which I like better. I will return the other one. Here are the two sets that I got.

Billabong Summer High Crop Swim Top

Billabong Tropic Time Swim Bottoms
Or this one (online order).
Becca Fine Line Camilla Bikini

Becca Horizon Emily Bikini Bottoms

FOUR. This week I got my hair done and I got some longer extensions. It has been 8 months since I added in the extensions and my hair was as long as my extensions. Last time we cut my hair and extensions to match and it was time for a new pair. Normally, your hair lasts up to a year and a half and mine would have. I even brought home my old hair and some leftover new hair. You just need to take care of your hair and it will last forever. So here is what it looked liked after. So.In.Love.

FIVE. I have no weekly funnies today as I tried all day yesterday to upload pictures and it wouldn't let me. I had 6 funnies to show you. Maybe if I can load them tomorrow morning they will be here.

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

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

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.

I feel like I am in a bit of a blogging funk. Anyone else feel this way? Maybe it is engagement being down. Maybe it is the school year ending? Or maybe life changed again and change is hard.

Anyways, onto this month's What's Up Wednesday...What's Up Wednesday
Sunday: Honey Sriracha Glazed Meatballs with brown rice and carrots (I used pork this time)
Monday: I went out to dinner with a friend.
Tuesday: Out with my little ladies since Rory has an early softball game.
Wednesday: Turkey tacos and fruit salad.
Thursday: Trader Joes Orange Chicken and Fried Rice.
Friday: Takeout or leftovers as a I have a massage and facial (mother's day gift).
Saturday: Unsure, but making something at home.

WHAT I'M REMINISCING ABOUT... The last year. This is my last week of working from home (more than likely) and I am not ok with it. We developed such a routine at home and the work from home life that I don't want to change it up again. It makes things easier with the girls schooling, Summer break and just stability in their lives. Ugh.

WHAT I'M LOVING... I love being outdoors, Spring, the blooming flowers and hopefully the beach days very soon.

Another item I have been loving and posted about last month is the Stila Glitter and Glow Liquid Eyeshadow. I got it in Kitten. I use the regular Stila Kitten Eyeshadow, but it is so hard to find. I wasn't sure if I would like this stuff, but it goes on smoothly, has lots of pigment, dries quickly and gives a pop to your eyes. This stuff gets good reviews and I can see why. 
Stila Glitter and Glow Liquid Eyeshadow

WHAT WE'VE BEEN UP TO... Well I got to see my best friend that I haven't seen in over a year. We celebrated a friends daughters birthday, had date nights, Mother's Day, went couch shopping, saw and watched my nephew, had dinner over at a friends house, and had a few family outings!

WHAT I'M DREADING... Going back to work full time in the office. 

WHAT I'M WORKING ON... Lots of work stuff.

WHAT I'M EXCITED ABOUT... Our week long trip to Graeagle! 

WHAT I'M WATCHING/READING... I am currently reading The End of Her by Shari Lapena. I just started it and I have the Good Sister by Sally Hepworth waiting for me to read.

As for tv, I have been watching Grey's Anatomy, Younger, A Million Little Things, Million Dollar Listing New York, Top Chef and now The Bold Type.

WHAT I'M LISTENING TO... XM/Sirius radio.

WHAT I'M WEARING... Well on Mondays and Tuesdays I have been living in my American Eagle jeans plus a nice blouse or top and either wedge sandals or ballet flats. Then on Wednesday through Sunday, I wear either leggings, dresses or shorts. Depends on the weather. 

And now that will change with going back full time I am sure. Currently we can wear jeans into the office, but I am not sure how long that will last. I am not up for wearing business casual daily. Ugh.

WHAT I'M DOING THIS WEEKEND... Well our plans keep getting changed, so I am not really sure. First we were going camping, but we don't have anywhere for the girls to sleep. Then we were going to go to Spring Creek to help my in-laws move into their mountain home, but we have nowhere to board Walter (he usually stays with family). Then we were going to watch my cousin's son for an evening, but we are just not sure anymore. Ha. 

Hopefully getting out and about!

WHAT I'M LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT MONTH... June brings Graeagle, beach days, the girls Kindergarten graduation, Father's Day and the Reno Rodeo!!!

WHAT ELSE IS NEW... Nothing really. Can I just say how crazy it is that we are almost half way through 2021?
Monday, May 24, 2021

Stitch Fix Box 3

*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.

I got another Stitch Fix haul in because my last box was a dud. I thought I would share this box with you as well. Again, I wanted to go over the details on how to get yours if you want to try it out.

If you haven't heard of Stitch Fix, let me tell you a bit about them. You pay a $20 styling fee that can be used towards the purchase of your items that are sent to you. You can create Pinterest boards with styling inspiration, you can go to the Style tab and say if you like outfits or not, you can tell your stylist what you are in the market for and you can take the quiz to give sizing/likes. Then you get a preview (this is new to me) of what is to come. If you don't like something, you can change it out or have a new box made.

So what did I get?

41 Hawthorne Corinna Brushed Dolman Knit Top
41 Hawthorne Corinna Brushed Dolman Knit Top - $40

When I saw this in the box, I liked it. Though I have a few shirts like this and we are headed into warm weather. We are averaging temperatures in the 70s right now (minus last week) and will be approaching the 80s to 90s very soon. So even though I liked it and the girls loved it, it is going back as I won't get enough use out of it until Fall. But I do have to say that this shirt is so soft and hits right at the right spot. If it was Fall/Winter, I would keep it. RETURNED
41 Hawthorne Corinna Brushed Dolman Knit Top

Just USA Berkley Frayed Shorts
Just USA Berkley Frayed Shorts - $45

I saw these and thought they are going back since I just bought two pairs of jean shorts from Target. BUT then I put them on and they fit like a glove, were comfy, cute, not too short and I had to keep them. And the girls said I HAD to keep them. KEPT
Just USA Berkley Frayed Shorts

Colette Romey Cold Shoulder Knit Top
Colette Romey Cold Shoulder Knit Top - $34

This looked like a regular shirt to me until I saw the sleeves on it. Then it upped it. I like the color a lot and the fit of it. I do wish it was a bit cheaper, but overall, I really liked it. It is soft and would be perfect with some slacks, heels and a statement necklace or with a pair of denim shorts and sandals. KEPT
Colette Romey Cold Shoulder Knit Top

Colette Romey Cold Shoulder Knit Top

Toms Jutti Neat Flat

I saw these and knew I had to have them, BUT then I tried them on and they were tight. I got my normal 8.5 (even though this is a new normal for me as shoes are made quite smaller these days) and it felt like my toes were scrunched at the ends. Maybe since they are a pointy (but not too pointy) toe shoe, then you need to size up. The girls wanted me to exchange them, but I am on the fence about it. Should I go up half a size? Or just return? UNDECIDED
Toms Jutti Neat Flat
Fortune + Ivy Lighton Zip Detail Mixed Material Blouse
Fortune + Ivy Lighton Zip Detail Mixed Material Blouse - $36

I pulled this out of the box and it looked like a few work tops that I already have. I loved the color, love the zipper, but wasn't as much of a fan of the top part and how it is see through. It is hard to tell, but you can see the bra straps a bit and that is a no-go for work. So I had to send this back. RETURNED
Fortune + Ivy Lighton Zip Detail Mixed Material Blouse

Overall, this was a better box for me. I did keep two items and I could have kept two others if it was the right season and the right fit. Have you tried out Stitch Fix yet?

Friday, May 21, 2021

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.

Happy Friday all! We don't have a lot planned this weekend and I am ok with that. We do have a little date night tonight and then Rory has a small hike on Sunday morning. Let's just hope the weather warms up and we can be outside this weekend.

Onto Friday Favorites and Happenings.

ONE. You may have seen my IG stories and already voted, but I wanted to put this on here as we are looking for a new couch/chair/something for our front room.

See before we had the girls, we got a recliner for their room. We used it a bit to rock them to sleep or just relax in. But as they grew and we needed more room, we moved the chair out into the living room. And ever since, Walter has claimed it his own. He would paw at it and "make it comfortable" when we were gone. But that slowly turned into a minor hole which grew. We tried putting blankets on it, his doggy bed, etc to save it, but nothing worked. It is the only area in the house that he has done that. He doesn't do it on our bed, to his doggy bed or the couch, but this chair he has claimed it to be his own.

Well it is time to get rid of the chair and get something else. We recently went shopping around and found two that intrigued us though we are not set on anything yet. 

Rory wanted a leather loveseat in the same area and I was open to all options. We found this leather loveseat which was comfortable, Italian leather and the marks wipe away easily. Then we found a giant chair. This could fit me and the girls on it, or one adult to sprawl out on it. 

So here is where you come in. Which one do you like more? Or neither?

TWO. Last weekend we went over to our friends house for dinner and they made us hot pot for dinner. Basically you have broth or broths in one compartment that you can put greens, noodles, shrimp, etc., in and then you have a grill side which we put meats, veggies, etc. on.

I have had hot pot in San Francisco and that is about it. It was sooo good and so much fun. I can't wait to have this style of dinner again. Have you had hot pot before?

Hot Pot

Hot Pot

THREE. Last weekend we went on one of our favorite walking trails. We took the girls and Walter and enjoyed the sunshine. Fun fact, we did this walk (it's uphill and the scenery is beautiful) at least once a week during the first 3 months of Covid.

Anyways, I took couple pictures along the way and just look at how big my girls are getting. Did you know they graduate from Kindergarten in less than 2 weeks? Where has the time gone?

FOUR. So remember a few weeks ago when I said I was getting a new bathing suit? And it was an expensive one, but I thought why not treat myself to an early Mother's Day gift and something that will last many Summers? Ya, well, it didn't fit. The top did and it was really pretty and the material was amazing. BUT the bottoms are high waisted (not a problem) and have a high thigh cut. I don't know if it is my body, but the bottoms looked like a diaper on me. They were so bad. Rory said you have to send that back. It is ugly. Ouch. And the models are of all sizes so I thought for sure it would be fine. But he was right, the bottoms were awful on me.

So I am on the hunt for a good bathing suit that will last me some years. Do you have a favorite designer? Favorite place to get your suits at?

Here is the suit that I sadly had to return.

Oleena Luxe Bikini Top

Olenna Luxe Bottoms

FIVE. Weekly funnies.

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

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Always Pan from Our Place Updated Review

*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. 

I thought I would write an update on my Always Pan from Our Place. I think I have recommended this pan to a lot of people, but mostly in person. I have friends who have come over for dinner or vice versa and I brag about this pan. BUT after having it for 5 months, it wasn't as good as it was when I first got it. 

Our Place Always Pan

When I first received the pan, I used it pretty much anytime I cooked. I followed the instructions on only using a sponge or the pad that came with it to clean it. I never cooked anything at high heat as most recipes only call for medium high at most. I never used anything else other than the bamboo scraper/spoon/spatula that came with it. I always let my pan cool completely before washing it. I even made my husband follow these instructions when he used it to cook eggs. 

But after time went on, things would stick more when cooking them. I couldn't just wipe things out on only one side of the pan. I even tried the letting it sit in water overnight. But within the last month, it just got worse and worst. And the stains went "deeper and deeper". See below. I have a friend who has had it as long as me, maybe even a bit longer and it hasn't happened to hers. 

Always Pan - Our Place

Always Pan - Our Place

I had gone over the 100 day return policy, so I wrote them describing what happened, sent some pictures and asked if they could do anything since I loved the pan. And you know what...they have some pretty amazing customer service. 

First they gave me some tips. They gave me ways to clean it (boil some water, let it cool slightly and then use the scrubber provided to get the stains and food off or let it soak overnight), and tips for only using "good" oils like EVOO, avocado oil, coconut oil, etc., which I only use those oils.

Once I told them that I had already done those things, then they started the process of an exchange. I gave them my address, color of choice (I changed to charcoal this time) and the order number again, so that everything is under one "order". Then they sent me a shipping label to send back the item and now I wait for my new one to arrive and then package my old one in that box and send it back. 

So fingers are crossed that this new one holds up since this is a great pan (overall).

I wanted to give an honest update on this pan as I like to hear updates on loved products and things that just didn't work. 

UPDATE: I got my new pan in 2 days. And here she is...

Always Pan