Boutique Debut; Feeling Chic with Fabr’ik!

Boutique Debut; Feeling Chic with Fabr’ik!

     Hey guys, welcome to yet another late post. I have figuratively fallen off whatever wagon I was on that made me prompt with my posts. Must be something in the water? Anyway… excuses aside, I was going to beguile you with the apex of my Valentine’s day festivities, but I imagine that might come across as me being immodest, so I’ll give my lovely future life partner props at the end of this post!

     For the curious, you can check on Twitter for the play-by-play where I live-tweeted the scavenger hunt. I also bragged on him a little on Instagram, but not quite as much. On twitter I’m also @java_and_jeans so if you’re curious, there you are!

     Moving on to the post at hand. On my fabled Weekend of Content when I took myself to Auburn to experience some of the missed opportunities there, I found Fabr’ik. A chic and comfortable little boutique that, at a glance, was a little above  my pay grade. But, I did find that I picked the right day to make the journey, because they were having the biggest sale of the year. Lucky me! 

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      The wall of shoes in that slideshow broke my heart, due to the fact that I was fruitlessly infatuated with some white booties that ended up not being my style. All of the other shoes I fell in love with, were too small. That aside, my hunt was fruitful. 

     One of the first things I was drawn to was this fiery sequin dress, from the clearance rack. It may be a little short, but nothing that some opaque black leggings can’t remedy. I’m feeling like this would be perfect for the holiday party this year… After all, I did say I was going to wear sequins. I’m glad it fell into my lap, and was only 40 dollars!

     This was the other thing I was absolutely obsessed with, and admittedly I usually do the reverse of this. I generally save the selections for the end, but I guess I decided to put those first today. This particular outfit was just too perfect- I’m a sucker for halter-tops and the shorts were so comfortable. This will be perfect for an upcoming trip to the beach, or out of state somewhere a little warmer! I feel like some simple flip-flops and an anklet would make this.

    

     These two things, I thought were moderately similar. The pink patterned one, while cute, wasn’t quite my style as I had thought. That adorable rose patterned one was amazingly comfortable. Had nice soft fabric that feel cool to the touch… but didn’t quite fit right. I know it might look like it does, but that zipper would. not. cooperate. I think of the things that didn’t come home with me, that second romper is the one that got away. What if it did fit? 

      This last item was something that, at first, I was really feeling. Honestly, I loved the pattern of the jump suit, I liked the fabric, the top and the boots… but separately. I feel like, even though I kind of liked the boots, they too far deviated from a distinct me-ness that I’m trying to find. I don’t wear faux-snakeskin, I wear converse, suede or leather. Maybe if these were a slightly different material, I would feel otherwise. But, alas.

    The jump-suit itself, barely fit. Which legitimately upset me. I have such a hard time finding a jump-suit that actually fits. It’s either nice on my waist, and too short, or long enough but too tight. This one was the former… kind of. I think the fit is a little awkward, truth-be-told. While I loved the aesthetic of the white top with it, I couldn’t make myself love it.

      Let’s move on past that heart-break and get on to my feelings on Fabr’ik!

My general feel on Fabr’ik was a somewhat mid-to-high-end boutique in the perfect downtown location. It’s literally nestled in a 2 block radius with like 3 or 4 other boutiques. Perfect for them, not so much for my self-control.  The general aesthetic of the shop was welcoming and warm, with a strange Southern Chic vibe that I picked up from the couches with a cow skin rug.

     It felt much bigger than it looked, with the arrangement of the items. That’s a great accomplishment because it’s a fairly compact venue. I love what they did with it, andI loved the wonderful staff there, too. I will definitely be returning to see what sort of new stock they get in the next few months! 

       (¯`*•.¸,¤°´✿.。.:* 𝒱𝒶𝓁𝑒𝓃𝓉𝒾𝓃𝑒’𝓈 𝒟𝒶𝓎 *.:。.✿`°¤,¸.•*´¯)       

     I don’t want to bore you guys with too many of the details, since you can check out the scavenger hunt below! 

The aftermath of every thing ended up looking something like this!

 

     He had that sign custom made for our wedding this year! I’m so excited for the time to come where we can finally get married- I love this man more than anything and I’m literally so lucky that I can’t express it properly. I know this post comes a little (lottle) later than I would have likes- I’m prepping the post for Thursday and filming the Tarteist Pro Remix video, as well! 

    I’ll leave you guys with this lovely picture of us hanging out in front of the overlook at the Country Kitchen in Pine Mountain, Georgia!

(¯`*•.¸,¤°´✿.。.:* 𝒜𝒻𝓉𝑒𝓇𝓌𝒶𝓇𝒹 *.:。.✿`°¤,¸.•*´¯)

 

…wait, I lied. I do want to give props one more time. You guys may have seen a coffee sign in that Twitter story. That was inside of one of my absolute all-time favorite shops. The storefront sign probably ruins any sense of suspense here. But, I want to extend a thanks to the beautiful people over at UniquExpressions for being a part of another precious memory for us! I hope we create so many more memories with you guys! I’m currently planning another trip out there as soon as time and money permit to hit that little boutique and drink about 10 cups coffee!

    Finally, I want to close this post off with a big thank you to you, my readers. I don’t know what to say except I do see that these posts get into the double-digits, and I’m so incredibly grateful for that. I feel like maybe I’m reaching someone, and I’m just so legitimately happy that you’re here. Just a heads-up, I do plan another giveaway soon, so stay tuned for that! This next one may be physical goods that are shipped out- I’m just finalizing those plans!

 

 

Java and Jeans and Valentine’s Day~

Java and Jeans and Valentine’s Day~

          Happy Valentine’s Day (night?) guys! I wasn’t sure what to post for today, since I don’t think any of the things on the back burner are very “Valentine’s Day” appropriate. Today wasn’t projected to be really particularly Romantic or even be my Valentine’s Day. But my future husband is full of surprises, and I want to gush.

     He has an enthusiasm for embarrassing me at work, and involving my bosses… or anyone he can tell his plans. When I went on break, my boss stopped by desk and asked me to follow him. The first thing out of my mouth was, “what did I do?”  In the break room, he didn’t see what (or who) he was looking for. I went to get a drink and when I came back, I was greeted by my fiance` surrounded by a group of 5 people helping him carry 3 teddy bears, 4 vases of flowers, 3 candy hearts and a super plush and warm blanket.

     Literally, I didn’t stop blushing for about an hour.  I was reminded of my own glaring inability to plan surprises. All I can do is literally buy gifts, get excited and give them to the recipient. I don’t have the… forethought and discipline to plan things like this.

     I’m sure you guys did your own thing for Valentine’s Day, whatever that may mean for you. So, I’m just making a quick and sappy post for the occasion. My tattoo itches really bad at this point, and I’m dying for a distraction. Maybe sleep? 

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       I’m so proud of him, and flattered. He put together those flower arrangements himself, my favorite part is the Carnations. He knows how much I love them. These smell fantastic and my biggest sadness is that I’m terrible with plants and I know they’re not going to last long at all.

     With the admission of my inevitable defeat,  I leave you guys until Monday. I know this isn’t quite Valentine’s post I was planning, and it may not be the one you guys wanted. But hey! It’s our first Valentine’s Day together! Next year, I hope to have a plan nailed down for the occasion. Maybe 14 day event? 

     

Starbucks Does Valentines Day With The Cherry Mocha

    

    Hey Guys! Today’s post is brought to you by Starbucks- because my roots are showing. And my roots are super crazy about the sweet, dessert-like beverages that Starbucks comes out with. Even though Japan usually gets better drinks than we do over here in the states. Like the Princess frappe that I feel really hurt about still. I may have heard about the Cherry Mocha a little late, which isn’t new. I generally am a little behind the curve. But I’m still hype that I at least heard about it!

   Even though I bet Japan has more options, we did get a Cherry Mocha for the big day, and the one thing I’ll say negative about it is that I think it would have been more geared toward the holiday if they had capitalized on the whole pink thing that monopolizes everything about romance. Like, I kind of feel like they missed with that decision. But, that aside, the flavor really raises to the aesthetic. This Cherry Mocha tastes like the Cherry Cordial candy that I always think I like more than I do. And I mean that- it tastes exactly like a Cherry Cordial. 

Cherry Mocha Taste Graphic
Visual representation of the taste of the Cherry Mocha

      This is really more like dessert, but honestly, what else is new. It’s a great example of Starbucks doing what Starbucks does best- sweet coffee that may as well be a milkshake. That’s literally not even a diss, though it sounds like one. It has the richness of dark chocolate, with a little sharpness, which makes me think of the Ghirardelli 70% cacao chocolates. I love dark chocolate, so I’m kind of all about it. The cherry adds a little bit of tartness to the flavor, which is delicious. I don’t even really like cherry flavors, generally, I’m a raspberry girl. 

     Honestly, I can see myself begging to stop by Starbucks on Valentine’s day just for this. I’ve been hooked on it for the past week since I caught wind of it. There’s just something about drinking a chocolate covered cherry topped with whipped cream and granulated sugar that speaks to me on so many levels. It’s sweet, it’s rich, it’s something that I’ve been trying to like for years in a package that works for me. For some reason, I don’t like cherry cordials, but I thoroughly enjoy the Cherry Mocha.

     Valentines Day is in 3 days, guys! I hope you guys are ready and that those of who don’t have anything planned for the occasion at least take time to pamper yourself! 

Update;

    I know I kind of died with Youtube, I was sick for so long and literally had no voice, I do have a load of products that recently got here that I’m testing for future videos as well as I’m working on the tarteist pro remix video. I’ll be cross posting it here. Please be gentle with me guys, we can learn all of this crazy stuff together! 🙂

20 Ways to Show Yourself Love on Valentine’s Day

       Hey guys, the day draws nearer! I know I’m not doing anything huge here for the ol’ commercial holiday, but that’s not the same for everyone. Couples and those who are not in a relationship, can both enjoy this holiday! This post is one for the latter! Even though this is a hugely romanticized “holiday”, it doesn’t mean the same things to us all. And in fact, some may find things generally done on V-Day as cliche and corny.

      While I’m not disagreeing with you, hypothetical new friend, I do think it can be fun and slightly cathartic to indulge yourself in the bright colors and saccharin sweetness of the day. I used to take myself out for the day, so I figured I’d share my favorite self care activities for the occasion!

 

In honor of SweetHearts that are not with us this year, due to Nekko shutting down shop.

 

  1. Youtube and Coffee – My favorite way to do this self care thing! 
  2. De-Stress with some Yoga
  3. Soak up the sun
  4. Watch cartoons
  5. Take a bubble bath
  6. Treat yourself to candy
  7. Start a new craft 
  8. Connect with a friend
  9. People watch at the mall
  10. Go to a new store and try things on that are outside of your comfort zone
  11. Make cocoa and watch documentaries
  12. Binge on Disney Movies
  13. Write out your stress
  14.  Doodle!
  15. Go thrifting
  16. Take yourself out for lunch
  17. Visit an arcade
  18. Take a ride with the windows down and the music up
    1. Seriously, this is so incredible. Last year I drove three hours for a speech, and even though I was stressed, there was something so freeing about just feeling the wind in hair. I was almost giddy by the time I got there and there were no nerves.
  19. Go downtown!
  20. Take the day off and play video games!

      Despite Valentine’s Day being called “Singles Awareness Day” by some, there’s nothing wrong with being single. Sometimes being alone is fun. Who doesn’t enjoy blaring the music while alone in the car? Singing alone in the shower? As I’ve gotten a little older, I’ve begun really valuing and enjoying my own company. Dinner alone? Bring it. Solo Arcade? Done. Lone Festival enjoying a lovely view on the Ferris wheel with no interruptions? Yes, please.

    I know, It can feel odd at first to go to lunch and hog a booth to yourself, but trust me. No one is looking, no one is making any judgements. 

So, go forth my lone venturers and treat yourself! Heck, one thing I didn’t put on the list because it’s technically for the day after Valentines’, is two words: clearance candy. How’s that for some self care?

Sweet Sentimentality; 3 Valentines Dates for Long Term Couples

     Hey guys! I know, I know, I’m late today too! I’m pleased to report that I’m finally able to speak, and I’m feeling good. Since I’m feeling better, I’m starting to really feel Valentines day. I was thinking earlier about places I would love to be other than work on this temperate February day. I started thinking about where I how I would love to celebrate our third Valentine’s day with my better half. I really can’t even believe it’s been that long.

       Really, why should the courtship stop just because you say “I do”, or even just a “Yes”? Make your fellas, or ladies, feel desired and treat them to an idea from this post!  I know how tight things can be while waiting for those long-lost taxes, so I’ll be keeping this one fairly budget friendly! And guys, these ideas are great if it’s not Valentine’s Day too!

Valentines Coffee

Coffee Date in a Neighboring Town!

      You know it wouldn’t be JnJ without me throwing coffee at you! This one is one that’s good for pretty much everyone… and if coffee isn’t your forte, most coffeehouses serve tea. It’s really fun to see what different types of flavors different shops will come out with to commemorate the day!

      Pick a nice window seat and put your phones away. Spend some time rediscovering each other and just chatting. Pretend it’s a first date (without the awkward silence!). Bonus points if you try new drinks, because, why not. After coffee, take some time to wander around the surrounding area or maybe decide on dinner. Take this time to de-stress and laugh together. You can even harken back to an important event in your shared history… like the place you got engaged.

     I suppose, this one doesn’t have to be out of town. If you have a favorite local haunt, feel free to visit it instead!

Hometown Hotel Date

      This is one of my all-time favorite dates! Depending on what place you decide to choose for your lodgings, it can either be budget or a ritzy. My favorite part of pretty much every vacation, is the hotel bed. The pillows are always so extravagantly fluffy, like I’m burying my face in a sheep. Anyone else love hotel beds?

      The other thing I love about vacation, is learning about a new town. This particular idea is literally so fun. Just pick a place and pretend you’re from out of town. Try to look at your town with new eyes. Take advantage of any attractions, events or restaurants that are either not seen or rarely visited.

      Last time we did this, we went to Cracker Barrel, because for whatever reason I only eat there when I’m in another city or state. It sold the illusion for me!

Valentine's Meal

The Great Bake

       So far out of this list, this is the one I’m considering for our valentines day. I really like the idea of preparing a nice meal together, tag-teaming the prep work and everything. There’s something that strikes me as so romantic about that! A million bonus points if you add some candles and some home-made (or just mixed) drinks. We really like making Cucumber Mint Lemonade, which is what we had on our first Anniversary.

    If that sounds up your alley, our recipe is super simple! 

  1. Throw some Milos Lemonade (or whatever brand you like) into a beverage dispenser like you’d find at Walmart.
  2. Chop one or two cucumbers and throw’em in the lemonade 
  3. Add fresh mint to taste
  4. Let it sit in the fridge for a couple hours to let the flavor develop

       It goes great in a wine glass and makes me feel so sophisticated, with the added bonus of reminding me of our early days!

     Let me know if you guys have gone on any of these dates, and what you thought! I’m hoping to be able to drag my lovely Fiance` on an adventure to celebrate the occasion, personally. I’m so excited for our third Valentine’s Day together, and I’m hoping for many more! 

      Also, share your own Budget Friendly Valentine’s datenight ideas below!

 

 

 

 

Chain; Starbuck’s Cascara Coldbrew… ew?

Chain; Starbuck’s Cascara Coldbrew… ew?

     Hey there guys! Thank you for joining me for this late post! I know I usually post around noon, but I’ve honestly been swamped. And that’s on top of trying to recover from whatever has me under the weather. I’m bringing us back home with a (somewhat) new-ish drink from everyone’s favorite chain coffee shop; the Cascara Coldbrew!

    I’ll keep this one fairly short, but I want to preface this with a thanks to the gentleman who allowed me to try a sample of this one! Based off the title, I didn’t care for it, but I really liked the opportunity to give it a go! 

     The first thing I did was sniff it- because, this is what I do, especially when faced with an unfamiliar “Cascara”. Right off the bat, I was stricken with how sharp it smelled. I caught the scent of bitter nuttiness that was offensive to my sugar-cravings. If you remember my attempts to like coffee soda, this gave me war flashbacks. Not a fan of remembering a drink I’ve worked so hard to repress.

 

The Drinkening

 

     Onto the actual drink itself; I procrastinated on taking the first sip. Despite the super nice barista assuring me that it was citrusy, and creamy, I found that I did not agree. Once I was able to psych myself up, I closed my eyes and took a sip. Right off the bat, I noticed the froth was mildly earthy, almost nutty with those citrus undertones. 

     The coffee portion of this drink, which I was excited for before having one handed to me, was surprisingly smooth. Not sweet in the least, which I should have figured. It honestly could just be my propensity for sweets, that made me take this as bitter. I did note the citrus flavor kind of peaking through the nuttiness. My general feeling is that it’s like coffee soda, without the carbonation. I think my least favorite thing about this one, is that it’s rich. It’s got a heavy thickness that lingers at the back of your throat and leaves you tasting it for minutes afterward. 

      Honestly, I did look into sweetening it. But I was unsure on how I wanted to go about that. I kind of feel like sweetening it would make it into a different drink, and I may try that next time… If there is one. I think what I’m trying to get at with this post, is that super nice baristas aside, I don’t like the Cascara. And I guess I certainly don’t like cold brew.

 

Taste; /5

     Really, I don’t think this one needs any explanation. I think this is first time since the Cinnamon and Almondmilk Macchiato that I’ve been this displeased with Starbucks. That Juniper latte was rough, but I don’t know… I think this one might give it a run for its money. 

     It’s okay Starbucks, you can’t please everyone!

 

 

Coffee Abroad; Thank you, Mama (mocha’s)!

Drink; Tirraman mocha (heavy caramel and mocha)
Stop; Auburn, Alabama
 
  Hey guys! I’m so sorry that my post for today is late! If you’ve been following on Instagram and Twitter, I’ve been rather sick. I tested the Tarteist Pro Remix palette for my next video (with my updated setup!), but I’ve lost my voice. So… there’s that. 

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       Anyway… let’s get to today’s delayed post! While on my weekend adventure to Auburn, I visited Mama Mochas again. This time I was pleased to see that they had completely rearranged their shop, which changed the aesthetic just a little bit. The lighting was different, I believe, as well! Then again, it could have been an illusion by the seemingly different decor. They changed up their seating arrangement, but despite the changes, it was this still the same old mama mochas. This time I also noticed, that they had a thrift rack. Where you could buy clothing that I assume was donated by the Bristow’s of the establishment. But before I perused the rack, I decided to get my long awaited coffee! Today, I got something new.
 
Mama Mochas tirraman mocha
 
         It honestly took all of my self-control not to get my usual White Russian, since I do gravitate towards the same flavors. I gathered my strength and this time I got the tirraman mocha. It’s their mocha with heavy caramel, and I gotta tell you, it is not the same as my white Russian. So tasting it shocked my taste buds because what I wanted was the white Russian, and it’s what I was expecting. That aside, this is not a bad drink. At first it’s got a very earthy tone underneath the richness of the caramel. There’s a fair bit of bite from the espresso. But once you get used to it you’re able to recognize the sweetness just underneath.This is another one from my trip, that you want to drink and great moderation. Small sips are your friend. Which sucks for me, because I like to drink my coffee fast. I’ll learn one of these days!
 
       Before I left, I perused the aforementioned thrift rack. I found this some super adorable pieces that almost came home with me! I had nearly settled on a super cute Jersey dress, or some really cute shirts that would be perfect for work. But, know I did not get anything I could wear to work. Except, on a casual Friday, maybe. I got an adorable black sweater comet looks like something I would see at the posh peach. With the word Love on the front.  It was only $5, no regrets. 
 
     My final consensus on Mama Mochas for this visit is….
 

Taste; /5

    This one honestly wasn’t for me, I prefer much sweeter flavors than this one delivered. It wasn’t bad by any stretch, so if you enjoy the bite of Espresso, you may really like this!

Instagrameter; /5

A new look means a new score! I wanna say I gave Mama Mochas a similar one last time! I really liked the openness of their new arrangement and found it very welcoming and cozy feeling. You know, despite being a fairly large and open floor. 

       As some real quick final thoughts of post, I want to thank you guys for joining me to check out another selection from Auburn! I sincerely do think that 2019 is going to be a year of content, and travel! Also, I haven’t done a giveaway in a while, so if you guys want in on any future ones that I’m planning, go ahead and sign up for my weekly newsletter! 

    Don’t forget to follow on twitter and instagram! The links are in the sidebar!

 

Boutique Debut; Oh, So Charming (Oaks)

Boutique Debut; Oh, So Charming (Oaks)

        Hey guys! It’s definitely been a long week, especially with all the running from the weekend robbing my poor little feet of sweet relaxation. Though they may ache and complain, I have no regrets! Especially with this first fashion related post from last weekend. This post is dedicated to my favorite outfit that I had to pass on, sadly, due to cost, and the breadth of the shopping I did this weekend. RIP at Charming Oaks toasty knit tank and navy skirt. I’ll never forget you.

     Before we dive into the outfits that I was able to find, let’s take a look at the aesthetic and an honorable mention. Their aesthetic feels like hospitality. It’s got a very welcoming feel in all of the warm colors and even the layout is open and inviting. When you walk in, you see this huge layout of racks and clothes of all kinds of colors. They have this adorable aesthetic lighting in the back that has the shop name, Charming Oaks, which was the only picture I thought I was going to get with all the rain outside.

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      In true JaJ fashion,  I did that thing where I went to a shop and picked at least one outfit to take home with me. I say at least one, because I did choose two items from one particular shop, which I’ll be showing you in an upcoming post! I’m seriously so upset that I could only pick one outfit from Charming Oaks, but I’ll definitely be back once I gather my resources back up! I’m coming for you, Charming Oaks. Be ready. I know I am. 🙂

     I’ll start at item number one that I tried on, just because it’s visible in my other pictures. I found this adorable red polka-dot summery dress on the clearance rack. In fact, all of my finds are from the clearance racks. I’m boujee on a budget, what can I say? This dress was way too cute for 5 dollars, and just my size. The fabric was breathable and light, perfect for the summer. I can’t wait for the warmer weather so I can pair this with some simple wedges and an anklet. Maybe a straw hat?

Charming Oaks Red Summer Dress
Pardon my mismatches socks- I think my house doesn’t want my socks to match because they KEEP disappearing.

      My second outfit was my favorite. I loved the little cardigan-thing, and the toasty knit tank that confuses me on what season it would be for. It would be far too hot for the summer, but would be great for the cooler weather if you wanted to just have it peek out of a plunging neck. I paired these items with a high-waisted navy skirt and felt so chic. I feel like would be great with some navy pumps, or shoot, even my tried-and-true hightops that I absolutely swear by. This would have been a great outfit for our trip coming up, too. Cold weather be damned. I do think I’ll return to Charming Oaks for this outfit, or one like it.

Charming oak knit tank and navy skirt

       I had few items that didn’t work out due to sizing issues, and these shorts were very nearly among their number. With an adorable bird patterned romper, and a sweater dress that I almost cried when I found it didn’t fit. This next outfit might be tied with the above, actually. As I look at it, I like it more and more. The loose-fitting olive green, drapey tank and black shorts combo is another one that begs for converse. Or, gold flats, would be a marvelous choice too! At first, I flat-out didn’t like this one. I generally stay away from really loose things, because they tend to make me look boxy. Boxy isn’t sexy, guys. I don’t like boxy. Like, give me a nice silhouette, c’mon.

Charming Oaks black shorts and olive tank

       You can literally see my doubt. I have a whole, “Do I like this?” thing going on. If I had been able to find a pair of black shorts that were just a little more my size,I would have absolutely bought this outfit. 

      My general concensus of Charming Oaks is that I’m thrilled with my experience there. My debit card had issues, but that was no fault at all of the lovely and understanding ladies that manned the counter. I was absolutely obsessed with that Valentines day shrug in the slideshow way up above. I certainly have plans to return for some serious retail therapy! 

     

Coffee Abroad; Auburn, Alabama’s own RossHouse!

            On my Weekend of Content, I took myself on a date to Auburn. I hadn’t been in so long, I hadn’t realized how much there was to do just in a single block! I visited 2 coffee shops and 4 boutiques to gather content for you! Let’s get to the first leg of my trip. Ross House. The weather being as inclement as it was, made my trip have a foreboding air. The rain intermittently drizzled and poured from the sky in torrents. When I walked up to Ross House, it was lightly drizzling but I got soaked to the bone as I left.

       The Ross House doesn’t let you forget that it is, in fact, a house. The aesthetic is altogether cozy and inviting. When you walk in, you’re greeting by a fireplace and chandeliers through the open doorway. There’s a separate room to the left of the entrance with more tables. I didn’t take photos of some of the other rooms for the privacy of the patrons that were set up there. I was honestly a little confused when I walked in, because generally when you walk into a coffee shop, the counter is right in front of you when you enter. 

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       I ordered a Vanilla Gingerbread Iced Latte, thinking I liked Gingerbread because I do like the cookies. That didn’t turn out to be the case, sadly. So, they did offer to make me something more up my alley. I went with a safe bet of Vanilla Caramel, I did find that it was much more bitter and earthy than I had expected.  This is one for people who enjoy the bite of espresso. Luckily for my sweet tooth, after a few sips the earthiness died down. Once I was able to taste the sweetness under the bite, it was smooth and rich. I think next time, I’ll get my drink extra sweet.

      Before we close out this post, I do want to note that the parking is woefully horrible. I had to do a very uncomfortable K-turn to get out. There’s a parking garage next door but it’s not available for anyone other than apartment guests. It was gated off, which I only found out by going into the wrong parking lot. 

 

       My rating for Ross House is below!

Taste; /5

Instagrameter; /5

Ready for Adventure! Here’s my Travel Kit, What’s Yours?

         Hey, guys! How are ya? As I make the final preparations for the youtube channel we make the preparations for our adventure to Gatlinburg, Tennessee. My camera batteries are charged and my makeup bag is curated! Most of this was stuff I was able to decide on immediately, with one item being a final addition and replacing its predecessor. Now guys, before I get into it, can I emote for a minute?

     I’m literally so incredibly excited. Things are kind of looking up and if they weren’t, it’s okay for one reason: adventureWe haven’t gone on a big trip since our impromptu trip to North Carolina before I had this blog. So of course, we have to go back… for the content and in no way because I want to. I’ve never been to Tennessee and my one gripe is how far away Gatlinburg is from Nashville. I imagine we’ll head there eventually, too!

Travel Kit spread
Shamelessly using Java’s Bunny Chair for a Travel Kit holder

       On to the essentials for our trip… y’know, if you can consider cosmetics as essential. I want to feel pretty, okay? My little travel kit turned out more robust than I had intended… I really didn’t know I used that many things on a near daily basis and once I figure out how to do lashes quickly, they might find their way into the kit too. Let’s get to it! 

For the sheer volume of items, I’m going to tackle this as a list!

Too Faced Hangover Prime/Set/Refresh Spray

I got this so long ago, or it feels like a long time ago. When I absolutely first got started in this little cosmetic thing. I literally haven’t used it since I got it, because I also got the other primer from Too Faced at the same time and quickly decided I preferred the cream. Now I much prefer my Tatcha Silk Canvas, but I don’t want to take the chance of losing their weird little disk. I suppose the cream primer from Too Faced irritates my skin, because of the itching, but I haven’t noticed the same with this spray primer.  
     This one actually makes me curious about the Mac Fix Plus I’ve heard so much about! This one made it into my kit because the size is perfect! So far over the course of my test runs with my kit, I’m not disappointed!

Anastasia Foundation Stick (banana)

      This is a very new find. In fact, I’ve seen it at TJ Maxx for months and passed over it for so long. The thought of a stick foundation didn’t appeal to me, and surely they never had my shade. Right? They only had this weird shade called “banana” and eventually, I got curious. I swatched it on my jawline and… I was shook. Legitimately shocked that it was a nice match for my skin. It makes me look nicely awake and conceals the redness in my cheeks. Best of all for my travel kit, it’s very compact. It blends out well with my paddle brush up there, and fairly effortlessly too. I regret not picking this up before because I can’t find them anywhere now. 

Tarte Shapetape

     You guys have probably heard how loved this particular concealer is. You can’t browse youtube Gurus without hearing about this one at least 10 times. I caved and had to try it. The shade I have is a little light for my skin (surprisingly), so I transitioned to using this under my eyes to just priming with it. Something about that ecstatic look of super bright under-eyes doesn’t appeal to me. This works as a great lid primer and gives (most) of my palettes great lasting power. I also like to highlight my forehead and nose with this a little to add a touch of dimension.

      I want to offer a quick word of warning; don’t bake this with Bare Minerals Loose Powder. I’m totally open to the fact that this a huge learning experience for me, and this has been one of my most noticeable mishaps. The bare minerals powder severely oxidized and darkened the heck out of my undereye. It was not flattering. I tried to bake it, because it creases fairly badly on my skin. And, not only did it darken the area… it still creased! 

Natasha  Denona Sunset Mini Palette

      I think I do my makeup in a strange order right now, since I’m listing this out in the order I use it you can probably guess that I interrupt my face routine to do my eyes. This one is my late addition, I had been playing with the Kathleen Lights x Colorpop Collab, but despite how much I love that palette, I found the lasting power severely lacking. Something had to be done- how I can go on vacation and look drab? This little palette makes some gorgeous looks with some amazing lasting power. I found the application so mind-blowing in comparison to some of my other palettes. I will say that you need to be gentle with this one. It deposits a lot of pigment really quickly. 

     This was my first experience with Natasha Denona, and my curiosity with their other palettes is only getting worse. For now, I’m okay with my little workhorse here! 

Urban Decay Naked Skin

        This one actually replaced my Shapetape as my general use concealer. I like how close it is to my skin tone and makes me look alive without making me look insane. It’s a super down-played concealer look and looks nice and natural. I generally do my concealer after my shadow. I really don’t know why I do it in this order, but hey, it works for me. This one also creases, sadly, but I still prefer the tone under my eyes, so I make do. I’m super open to any tips on making concealer or not crease!

MUA Brow Gel/Makeup Revolution Brow Pencil

      I’m going to be honest- like with most things makeup related, I have no idea what I’m doing with my brows. I’m absolutely confused. Do I fill in the natural shape? Do I make a new one? I’ve been filling in the front of my brows with the gel and using the pencil on the tail. It looks decent, or I think it does. Definitely passable, at least until I start getting hate on Youtube for my admittedly abysmal brow-game. 

Kat Von D Dagger Liner

       I know there’s a lot animosity for KVD lately, and I definitely don’t want to insert myself into anything as far as that’s concerned. I purchased this before I was aware and, guys, I’m going to get my money’s worth. Also, this is the liner I learned I can use my non-dominant hand to apply liner. It has nothing to do with the liner, I’m just proud. I find that this liner has nice lasting power and doesn’t smudge. Being supr black, it adds a great emphasis to my lash line and looks great with mascara filling in the rest. I literally couldn’t not include it since it’s my favorite for the moment- I do intend to get the Benefit Roller Liner as soon as I’m able to, because from the sounds of it that one might replace this KVD liner!

Tarte Lights Camera Lashes

     This is literally my favorite mascara right now. I found it and I’ve been obsessed ever since. Better than sex, who now? Prior to LCL I was using Lash Paradise, and this one blew it away. There’s no way this one wouldn’t be in my travel kit. I find this one holds the curl beautifully and lasts all day, assuming I have the wherewithal to apply this after my setting spray, it doesn’t transfer. If I neglect that and put it on whenever, like I usually do, it leaves an obvious shadow under my eyes. I’m not too mad, because, as strange as it may sound it never mattered to me before.

     Though I will admit to a bit of agitation when I see the transferrence whenever I pass a mirror. Talk about going to a 10 to a 0 in no time flat.

Too Faced Chocolate Bronzer

   I don’t always do this, but when I do my incentive is the scent. Too faced is so irresistible to me with their candy scented products. You guys might have picked up that I have quite the sweet tooth on me. I love sweet scents, sugar… anything sweet. I… also don’t know how to bronze. I’m trying to figure out what I like with it. I like to keep my face looking really youthful, so I don’t carve out my cheeks or anything. I just use a light dusting around the borders and under my chin. It’s subtle but looks really good to me sometimes. 

Lancome x Sonya Rykiel blush

     I found this blush at TJ Maxx and was kind of obsessed the moment I saw it. Admittedly, it was the design got me. I really like a hand-drawn aesthetic, and this is right up my alley. The blush color is gorgeous and much, much lighter than it looks in the compact. I will say that it’s really, really easy to go too strongly with this due to the formula. I, for some reason, like a little blush across my nose, so I won’t use this for that purpose. I think I like to apply this with my fingers and then blend it out with my paddle brush, because I generally don’t like the applicators that come with things like this.

 

Laura Gellar Highlighter

      My recent favorite step to my routine is highlight, and guys, I’ve amassed a fair collection of highlighting palettes with little standalone ones sprinkled in. This particular one, is a gorgeous champagne color that’s nice and subtle but can be built up. I didn’t include it in the picture just above since it’s visible in the first picture and has a transparent top. I remember being so pumped to get this, and then I stopped using it. Since I’m getting ready for youtube, I’m planning to try to make use of a lot more of my collection. 

     I think this little highlight is one of their travel sized one? It’s definitely pretty tiny, especially in comparison to the Anastasia Amrezy highlight. I wouldn’t call it a slouch!

All-Nighter Setting Spray

       This one was suggested by one of my best friends during Ulta’s 21 days of Beauty. I snagged it the moment it went on sale for 15 dollars, and I haven’t looked back since. I love this. I was lucky enough to get a sample size to throw into my travel kit, since the larger bottle won’t fit in my bag. I have no idea what I’m going to do when my sample bottle is empty… unless I pour some of the other bottle into it, but who wants to take the chance of spilling this holy grail?

Urban Decay Vice Liquid Lips

     I have 2 colors of this right now, big bang, which is a gorgeous glittery pink, and backtalk, which is a perfect light pink. Backtalk is almost kind of a nude for my lips. The color on backtalk lasts an insanely lont time. I will never regret buying either of these because they’re stunning. I included both for our adventure for a day and night thing. I might add a more red-toned one before out trip for our inevitable date nights. I just have literally no idea which red to pick. Why do I have so many red lipsticks???

Estee Lauder Translucent Powder

    This is literally something I don’t use on the daily. I got it on a whim because in my head, I associate Estee Lauder with basically something akin to the lap of luxury. Who doesn’t like luxury? I feel like I’ve used it once or twice to control the oil that pops up in my T zone through out the day. If I recall correctly, that’s how it earned a place in my travel kit! It doesn’t oxidize or darken, it just controls the shine.

     I did include a Neutrogena Lip Gloss there too, but not for any special reason. Just for the times when I want to just wear a gloss. I can’t wait to share our trip with you guys, so be sure to follow on Instagram @Java_and_Jeans so you don’t miss any of the fun! I have no idea what’s in store for us in Tennesee, but I’m so incredibly ready! If you guys have a dedicated travel kit for your beauty routine, share that in the comments below!