Friday, October 26, 2012

California Dreamin'

A few weeks ago, my three oldest children went with their grandparents on a trip across the back of California. It isn't the California most of us know or think about, but it has a very stark beauty all its own. I thought I would share some photos to show you what I mean.

They went to Bodie. Everyone just up and vacated the town. It was left as-is; with everything in the buildings.

On the road.

Convict Lake

On the way to Death Valley.

A view of their "town," Stovepipe Wells.

This is the lowest point in the contiguous USA, Badwater Basin. It is 282 feet below sea level. From Badwater Basin, they could see the highest point in the contiguous USA, Mount Whitney, at 14,505 feet above sea level!

I didn't think I would find their photos so beautiful because I love the lush look of the coastal areas of California and the oak and pine tree forests in the Sierras that I live so close to, but I did. The empty openness was hauntingly beautiful and I could see why they liked it so much. There is something amazing in the grandeur of it all. It was an open display of God's glory!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Cranberry Orange Bread

For those of you that asked, here is the recipe for the best fall-ish sort of bread ever! :)

Cranberry Orange Bread

4 C white flour
2 C sugar
3 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
1/2 C butter (or shortening - butter is better!)
2 eggs, beaten
3 T grated orange rind
1 1/2 C orange juice (or water or milk or part of one and part of another)
bag of cranberries, whole

Preheat oven to 350. Combine dry ingredients and cut in butter with pastry cutter or two knives. Add egg, liquid, and orange rind and stir until moist; fold in cranberries...

Cook in well-greased loaf pans for 50 minutes to 1 hour (until done). Makes two loaves that look like this:

I modify this a bit by using the whole rind of the orange. I really like the orange flavor. The bread is delicious!

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Do you want to join the Schoolhouse Review Crew?

Yep! You read that right! They are open for applications!

So what does it take to be a Schoolhouse Crew Review team member?

1. Do you have an active blog?
2. Do you have at least 22 public followers?
3. Do you homeschool?
4. Do you like homeschool curriculum?
5. Do you want to use new curriculum with your own children and share about your
experiences on your blog?

If you answered YES, then the Crew might be for you!

Please fill out the application here:

2013 Schoolhouse Review Crew Application

Come join the fun!

Sunday, October 07, 2012

I feel Beeyoutiful!

Sometimes we receive really neat curriculum products to review through the Schoolhouse Review Crew. Other times we receive the most amazing products for Mom (Me!) This is one of those times and wow, did we have some fun things to review with a lovely company called...

We received three different packages to review. 

The health care set:

The skin care set:

And the one I am reviewing today, the makeup set.

The makeup is not sold on their normal website, Beeyoutiful.com, but has its very own website, BeeyoutifulSkin.com. Here you can see all the different kinds of mineral makeup they sell. But I don't want to get ahead of myself!

What is mineral makeup? I didn't know either. From the website:

What goes onto your skin is a combination of up to four minerals that are baked at different temperatures to achieve the desired color. Our entire makeup line is 100% pure minerals, which means there are no fillers or additives of any kind. 

We selected our foundation first out of 24 colors. Because I have very fair skin, I narrowed it down by clicking the "Fair" on the left. They also have foundation charts to help you.  If you are really unsure, you can order samples for a $1.00. Any sample of any of their makeup products are available in sample sizing so if you are really unsure after the foundation charts, definitely order the samples first. I selected Ophelia. We also received the Foundation Brush ($11.00) that is essential to applying mineral makeup. It is a soft yet thick brush that moves around your eye and face to spread the foundation around.   

We were also given the opportunity to select two eye colors to play around with. There are over 45 to choose from. Interestingly, you can use the eye colors as lip colors too--they are interchangeable. I selected Chocolate Plum and Gold Dust. Now they are both beautiful, but Gold Dust is just lovely. It will be very fun for the holidays! We also received the Combo Brush ($6.50) to apply the eye colors. This brush has two ends for different parts of the eye.We received a DVD that explained the application techniques for all the makeup, but the website provides these free videos to help you figure it out too. Definitely try foiling your eye makeup! It is a neat technique that makes your eye colors just pop (and last!)

As I said, I have never used mineral makeup so I didn't know what to expect. I was REALLY happy with the results. I have a big issue with dark circles under my eyes. I have had them my whole life whether I get a lot of sleep (rare) or whether I don't (often!) You would not have known I had them with this makeup on. I was VERY pleased with that. It is really simple to apply this makeup too. All you do is tap a small amount into the plastic lid and use the brush to apply it in small amounts around the eyes and face. You don't need to use a lot to cover a multitude of facial sins. (Wink.) 

The eye colors are similar. It does not take a lot to give your eye good coverage and the colors have a beautiful sheen to them that last and really highlight the eyes. The selection is large and the fact you can use them for your eyes as well as your lips speaks volumes to those looking for more bang for their mineral buck.  

They break the 45+ colors down into these categories:

Earth Tone
Fine Metal
Neutral Base

This makes it much easier to find colors you know are best for you. (That's how I did it anyway!)

BeeyoutifulSkin.com sells their makeup by weight. The foundation is 3.7g for $25.00 and the eye colors are .44g to .47g for $10.00. Because we did not receive a full 3.7g in foundation, I cannot tell you how long it should last. I have been eking mine along and not been using it every day so it has lasted longer than it would have had I used it every day. I really love it though, and will definitely buy it to use regularly. 

Beeyoutiful Skin also sells blushes and bronzers as well as the skin care line I mentioned above. There are so many good things this company sells! The Schoolhouse Review Crew did review the other two sets above so if you want to find out what they thought about those, you can read about them here:


Disclaimer:  I received a free copy of this product through the Schoolhouse Review Crew in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations.