No lamb, no garden, no immaculate conception but there IS something about me.


Glossybox vs Birchbox: September 2012

Well ladies, it's that special time of the month again. No, not that one! The one where I compare this month's Glossybox and Birchbox and I have to tell you, it's tough to tell which one is better this month.

First, a quick run down of what they are in case you were unaware.

Glossybox and Birchbox are both monthly subscription services where you get a sampling of beauty products to try.

Glossybox: $20/month
Birchbox: $10/month
Glossybox: Usually the last week of the month
Birchbox: Usually the second week
Glossybox: Higher end with one or more full sized products included each month
Birchbox: Mid to high end with deluxe samples and the occasional full sized product

After going back and reading last month's review I think that it seems like I like Glossybox over Birchbox which is not exactly the case. Glossybox has just been sending better items the last few months whereas I was getting frustrated for a while with what I was getting from Birchbox. Last month was getting on track to a better box and this month's was amazing! I was ridiculously excited when I opened this box and you will see why in a minute.


This month Birchbox teamed up with Vogue to create a box to "jumpstart your autumn beauty collection" (their words, not mine, but I still like it).

1) Bvlgari Mon Jasmin Noir perfume sample I am loving the smell of this, it smells like WASPy yacht club society ladies which I am putting in a request to be reincarnated as. I'm already planning on purchasing a small travel sized bottle of this as it's much heavier than my typical scents so I will only use it on special occasions but it's seriously delicious.
2) Color Club Birchbox Custom Color in Put a Pin in It I think I read that these colors were inspired by fall and Pinterest and although it's pretty I'm not into shiny nailpolishes in the least so I will probably stash it to use in a giveaway someday soon. 
3) Dr. Jart+ BB cream I haven't found a BB cream yet that will rip the Dior foundation that I worship from my hot little hands but I still give them all a fighting chance. Maybe this one will be the one? I'm not sure though because it's American made (see the Glossybox review below for more info on what I mean).
4) twistband hairtie I think these are really cute to wear around your wrist but they don't hold my hair tight enough because it's too straight and slippery and slides right out. It's good to keep in my work bag as a backup though (nothing is worse than needing a hair tie and not having one, am I right or am I right?). Plus the print is so cute so who cares if I look like a hot cheerleader mess?
5) Fekkai Essential Shea Shampoo and Conditioner This made me squeal in happiness a little. I know it's just a sample but I LOVE this duo and I always have some in my shower to use once a week or so just to switch things up (my daily combo is Redken Clear Moisture which I've used for years). It lasts about a year that way but last time I decided to change and I got the glossing version instead and I've been missing this one so I'm happy to get a wash or two of happiness out of it.
6) The Brushguard Variety Kit This was a lifestyle extra and I think it's supposed to hold the shape of your makeup brushes as they dry after you wash them. I'm pretty excited to try it on my Mac 188, it gets a case of Florida humidity style disco momma hair after I wash it and spreads out like crazy which is annoying. 
7) THE BEST PART OF THE WHOLE BOX Do you see that little card in the middle? The one that has the magical word "Madewell" on it? Also known as ONE OF MY FAVORITE STORES OF ALL TIME?? It was a $25 off a $75 coupon code and I do mean was because I already used it. I'm also working on convincing my friend to give me her code too. I have no shame.

Overall this was my favorite box I have ever gotten from them and it may be because of the Madewell code. It's the little things, people.

This month's theme was also fall which is perfect because everyone knows that the fall in upstate NY is the best ever. Why else would we have droves of people flocking in just to look at leaves? If they knew what it was like to have to rake them day after day then they may change their tune a little but it means unlimited supplies of freshly baked apple cider donuts at the apple orchard near my house so whatever.

1) GKHAIR Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner Are these boxes telling me something with the hair cleansing items? Because I swear it gets washed 1-2 times a day much to my stylist's dismay. Anyway, I've never heard of this brand but it smells amazing and it has keratin in it which is all the rage right now (for people with body and volume and curl in their hair, none of which I posses). There aren't any ounces listed on them but they are a decent size and they retail full size at $20.00 apiece.
2) Koh Gen Do Cleansing Spa Water I am most excited about this because it looks just like Bioderma which I have heard great things about but can't get here in the states unless I order it from Amazon at an exorbitant amount. It's a water like makeup remover that (allegedly) leaves no residue and I am always on the hunt for something that won't tick my super sensitive skin off. This bottle is 3.38 fl oz which is a full sized product that retails at $13.00.
3) Kryolan for Glossybox lipstick in Glossy Pink I have known about Kryolan for year but have never owned any of their products. They were originally created as stage makeup I believe (I may be wrong and I'm too lazy to google it) but have gone more mainstream in the last few years. Seeing as I am getting old and inching towards my mid early thirties I have started liking lipstick so I am pretty excited about this. It is a full sized product and retails at &14.
4) Missha My Perfect Cover BB Cream I learned about BB creams a few months ago from an online friend who is obsessed with them. She has told me time and again that they were created in Asia and that while they have finally caught on in the US, our versions are nowhere near as good as the Asian ones. A BB cream is supposed to be a tinted moisturizer, foundation and SPF all in one and they are supposedly amazing. I have only used American ones but this will be my first Asian one as it is Korean made. This is a full sized product and retails at $29.99.

In total the amount of full sized products in this month's Glossybox totalled around $57, plus the shampoo and conditioner samples. I just got this box today so I haven't tried anything yet but I am excited to.
I am not sure if I have mentioned it before but not everyone gets the same thing in their boxes. The Glossybox is mostly the same (for example a friend got a mattifying lotion instead of the cleansing water) but the Birchboxes tend to be vastly different every month. When you sign up you create a profile that sends you products a little more tailored to your needs.

Oh! Also! I finally convinced a man friend of mine to sign up for Birchbox Man so look for Justin to be doing a guest post review of his Birchbox when it arrives! (and there will probably be some gratuitous bunny pics as he has two as well that I call The Bits).

As always, here is a link to join Birchbox if you'd like. Or if you are more interested in Glossybox send me an email to and I will send you an invitation. 

How were my pictures this month, any better? I will still be using my iphone until I get fancy and buy a real camera someday but I took them near the window on Trixie's kitty ledge and she wasn't too happy about it. She tried to sneak in to sit on top of everything and I caught her in the act.

My molding is not yellow, I swear. It's slightly off white. 


Hello again!

Friends, if I could give you one piece of advice about running it would be this: Body Glide. And don't forget to use it when you decide to run 13 miles. Or 9 miles as I did last Sunday and forgot it then, too. I'm paying for it now, that's for sure. I wore a new sports bra today and it rubbed spots raw on my collarbones which is miserable and I forgot to load my feet up on it too and got two massive blisters.

So anyway, if you caught that yes, I ran 13 miles today. I wanted to make sure I could do it before my race. Neither my running partner nor I were into the run today so it was slow going and even though I was mentally prepared for it my body draaaaaaagged. I hate those runs, they never make you feel good because you feel like you're fighting against your body the entire time. However last Sunday I ran 9 and it was an awesome run and I felt like I could go forever. I'm hoping I am that way next Sunday for my race.

I was still happy when it was over.

I apologize for being absent but once I found out I was out of work for another three weeks I got pretty depressed. Noah the PT and I talked about my running and I decided to cut way back to help my back rest and that's been upsetting. I really wanted my mileage closer to 30 miles a week at this point but I am only doing Sunday long runs, Tuesday training runs and then an easy run on Friday or Saturday which is hovering me in the 17-20. I also stopped with the massive cleaning of my house (most of it is done anyway) and spend most of my days laying on the floor of my living room. For those that think I am living it up while being out of work, I'm not. I've listened to my doctor and PT since the beginning and have done everything they suggested in order to heal sooner. Neither have ever told me to stop running completely since the initial 3 weeks I took off in July which I'm grateful for. Noah the PT is also a runner and he understands that I can't just stop without being insanely miserable so I've just cut back. Mentally it's still hard though, I am so used to going going going all the time and holding down the floor of my living room gets old fast. Thank goodness for Netflix and Youtube is all I can say.

The great news is that I am going back to work on October 1st *cue cheers and confetti*. I also have my MRI tomorrow so I will finally know what is going on which I am hopeful is nothing major. I will never understand human medicine and the idea that the answer of "I think" is better than "I know". I feel like I have to fight for diagnostics to identify the exact problem vs veterinary medicine where we want answers and we want them in 10 minutes. Such a different world.

In other news, Trixie has finally taught Archie how to play dead. If you see in this first picture, she has been working on it since Archie was very young and I think the bun finally has it perfected.

Look at how tiny Archie is trying to sit in her hay bowl! I die.

A pro.


Welcome to Miami. And by Miami I mean Destin.

Yesterday I took the bun outside for the first time. I thought she would be really excited about it but it turns out that for the second time in my life I was wrong (I won't tell you about the first time, it still stings). I thought I would put her harness on her, set her in the grass and she would do happy bunny leaps of joy (called binkies) and eat a bunch of grass. Instead she freaked out until I opened her crate at which point she ran in, peed in the corner and did 10 minutes of angry digging on her blanket. That will show me I guess.

Sitting on my lap is better than the terrifying grass, apparently.
Not. Happy.

I spent the better part of this week in Destin, Florida with an awesome friend of mine. We didn't do much except hang out on the beach and drink a gallon or two of wine and it was glorious. I also got a second degree sunburn but that's par for the course, there's no amount of SPF that protect my milk white self from speeding towards melanoma (for the record I was wearing SPF 70). Because of my sunburn that I got the first day there I didn't run at all and that combined with spending so much time relaxing means that my back feels better than it has in over a month!

If you're looking for a great hotel I highly recommend the Hilton Sandestin.
Despite the fact that the entire area was overrun with children (seriously, it was crazy but they all cleared out by Monday) the hotel was awesome as was the area of Destin. The beach was right out the back door of the hotel and there were two outdoor pools and one indoor pool. We rented an umbrella and chairs and sat by the ocean (that was so warm to swim in!) and at night we took the little trolley that the hotel shuttled people back and forth to the warf area with. There was shopping and restaurants there and lots of outdoor music. There are also quite a few shopping areas in the town and I finally found a black blazer that fit my abnormally small shoulers properly! I even got to go to my first Tommy Bahama which was a neat restaurant with fantastic sangria. We had so much fun and it was a great week.

I thought for sure that I would go to my recheck appointment at my doctor today and he would give me the green light to go back to work on Monday but instead he told me that he wants me out another 3-4 weeks. Womp womp. I understand his reasoning because over a month ago my back was feeling better and I went to work full force and reinjured it but that doesn't make it any easier to hear. The good news is that I bargained with him to let me call in a week to see how I am feeling and reevaluate so that I can maybe return sooner. I also have to go for an MRI which is never exciting, I usually do ok for the first 15 minutes and then remember that I am stuck in a huge magnetic tube and can't move and then I start to panic but I AM looking forward to knowing what exactly is wrong. I'm staying positive that they find nothing and it's all been psychosomatic ;)

I leave you with a shout out to my awesome hat that saved my face from getting charred on the beach, high five to JCrew.


August weight loss and running report

My August weight loss didn't go as well as I'd hoped (I wanted to try for 10lb lost, what was I thinking?). I "only" lost four lb but hey, that's 4 less on me! My measurements have gone down and that is better than the scale going down so I'll take it. I'm pretty sure I'm not losing weight as quickly because I'm not eating enough calories. I just don't eat a lot in general and when you take sugar and carbs out of your diet your caloric intake is almost non existent. At least mine is, unless I decide to eat bacon every single day which would be gross. I am not on that "OMG BACON IS THE MOST AMAZING THING EVER!!1!1!" bandwagon. I mean, it's good with pancakes but I don't die over it. Except for the burgers at Nosh in Portland, Maine that have bacon ground into the burger meat and they're amazing. My September goal is 5lb, something attainable I think... I hope.

As for running my mileage and workouts were good for this week, here's the run down:

Sunday: 10 miles
Monday: Physical therapy (trust me, it's a work out)
Tuesday: 4 miles
Wednesday: Jullian Michael's 30 Day Shred workout
Thursday: 3.5 miles and physical therapy
Friday: Rest day (PT made me really sore the day before)
Saturday: 5 miles

Total mileage: 22.5! I'm finally past the 17 mile barrier I've been hanging out in!

I'll be missing my running group tomorrow and Tuesday so I am going to try and stay focused and get my miles in anyway. I've been rotating shoes between my old busted Ravennas and the devil Mizunos and I am getting less blisters. I'm still getting them but not as many and they're in different spots which is good. The ones that frustrate me (and hurt) the most are the ones that form right under and area that had one a day or two before. I am thinking of switching to Nikes for my next shoes, I keep seeing a lot of people wearing them and it makes me curious to see what they would be like. I haven't had a pair of Nike's since high school so I have an unbiased opinion of them. Plus I could create my own color combo online and they will make them for me, how awesome is that?? Here's what I came up with:

How awesome do they look? I mean, really. They're pretty amazing and I can even get my name on the tongues which is an A+ in my book, I like all of my things branded with my name so no one touches my stuff. Yes, I'm an only child. Why do you ask?

My back is pretty ticked at me when I run anything over 6 miles but I just need to work on getting it stronger. I haven't been showing as much improvement as Noah the PT would like so when I go to my doctor recheck on Friday (the one that determines if I can go back to work or not) he wants me to discuss with my dr having xrays and/or an MRI done. Awesome. Pttthhhhb. I'm trying to stay positive but I got really upset when he said that on Thursday and I almost became a blubbering mess so we only did an hour's worth of exercises vs 1.5-2. I'm hoping that I can regroup the next few days and rally to bring my positivity level back up because being a piss ant isn't going to get me anywhere.

Does anywhere out there run in Nikes? What do you think of them if you do?