Not In Jersey: January 2016 January 2016 - Not In Jersey

What I’ve Been Reading #110

Friday, January 29, 2016


My first book completed in 2016 was yet another romance by Bella Andre, this one being Ian’s story in the Seattle Sullivan series. “Ian Sullivan, the powerful and wealthy CEO of Sullivan Investments, has never failed at anything in his life...apart from love and marriage. Certain that he’ll never take the plunge again, the last thing he expects is for a beautiful actress to turn his perfectly organized world completely upside down. Tatiana Landon, one of the hottest talents in Hollywood, has been waiting for true love her whole life. When she meets Ian, she’s certain she’s finally found it...along with a passion that sizzles hotter than anything in her wildest dreams. All she needs to do now is find a way to convince him to take the risk of loving again. Ian soon realizes that Tatiana is just as focused on winning his heart as he is on locking it away. But when unexpected circumstances thrust them into a world where real-life rules don’t apply, will Ian finally recognize Tatiana as his one true love?” Ian was the first in the series who was previously married, which was intereresting. Also, Tatiana previously appeared in Smith’s story as his co-star and sister of the woman he fell in love with, Valentina.  Tatiana is quite different from Valentina though, and her pesonality made this book enjoyable. She has a lot of spunk! She decides that she wants to be with Ian and she lets him know it. When he pushes her away, she chases after him. In the end, of course, she gets the guy!

What have you been reading lately?

January In Review

Thursday, January 28, 2016

February starts on Monday? That’s weird. January went by very fast and not all that much even happened! Here are some of the highlights.

Family Activities:



  • I did a lot of research on my ancestry.
  • I reviewed a dress from
  • I continued watching Chicago Fire and also Chicago PD.

See, like I said, not much happened! Happy February everyone.

Simon Says

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Simon is 5 years plus 5 months old and he is the funniest kid. Here are some of the things he has said to make me laugh recently!

“Why is it called a toilet if it is not a toy that is lit?”

Me: “First I’ll get you ready and then I’ll help Zachary.”
Simon: “No, first help me and then me and then Mr. Nobody, and then Zachary.”

IMG_1372[1]  IMG_1373[1]
“My minion’s name is Simon Junior.”

“I ate Pirate Booty so now I’m a pirate. Arr!”

When I woke him for school in the morning: “It’s as dark as a monkey outside!”

When making a video: “This is Simon dot com!”

“This car is from the 90’s. No, it’s from 2004. Is that a long time ago?”

Me: “I heard someone say they saw a snowflake that looked like…”
Simon: “A hippo on a boat?”

A hippo on a boat? What an imagination!

It’s Okay #100

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

It’s okay…

…that this is the 100th week I have written an “it’s okay” post.

…that I was happy I didn’t live on the East Coast for this weekend’s blizzard.

…that we played Bingo on Saturday night and I won a round! We got a movie theater gift card as a prize.

…that I found a conditioner that is meant to straighten hair, and while it obviously didn’t make mine straight, it did make my straightener work without the frizziness!

…that I have never watched the X-Files or the Bachelor.

What’s okay with you this week?

January Ipsy Glam Bag

Monday, January 25, 2016

This month I received my 27th Ipsy Glam Bag. This month’s theme was “All Eyes On You.” Here is what I received:


theBalm Cosmetics Mr. Write (Now) in Jac B. Bronze – $17:
These pencils deliver the long-lasting color you've been looking for, and have built-in sharpeners so they are always ready when you are.
20% off with code IPSY20 until 2/29/16.
My thoughts: I love this brand’s humor. I mean, their website name is the balm dot com! And the names of their products are all humorous and cute as well. As for this eyeliner, well other than the fact that the tip broke off as soon as I started using it and that I haven’t found the built in sharpener (maybe they just mean that when you turn it, the tip comes out?), I liked it. I like the color and how it goes on.

Mitchell and Peach English Leaf Body Cream – $51.35 for 180 ml, I received 30 ml, a value of $8.56:
This indulgent body cream contains Vitamin E, shea & cocoa butter and organic English honey to soften, nourish and protect your skin. It rubs in and absorbs easily, without the stickiness.
20% off with code IPSY24 until 2/29/16.
My thoughts: I’m really not into lotions or scents, but this does have a nice smell to it.

Jelly Pong Pong Fairy Lashes Curl – $21.95 (not sure if I got full size or not):
Fairy Lashes CURL is a sculpting mascara that continually curls lashes throughout the day with a unique synthesis of Moringa Seed resin that holds the curl of lashes for long-lasting results.
20% off with code IPSY20 until 2/29/16.
My thoughts: I have a lot of mascaras that I rarely use. I want to use them more often though! I’m not sure if this one is any different from the many others that I have.

Hey Honey Skincare Open Your Eyes Eye Contour Lifting Fluid – $28 for .5 oz, I received .27 oz, a value of $15.12:
Wake up your eyes and minimize the appearance of fine lines in an instant with this super light firming gel. Open Your Eyes is designed to reduce puffiness, hydrate and tighten the skin around the eyes upon application for a visibly lifted effect.
20% off with code HoneyIpsy until 2/29/16.
My thoughts: This is my third product from this brand and the others I have liked, but I’m not sure what the point of this one is! I was nervous it would be sticky, but it isn’t.

City Color Cosmetics Eyeshadow Trio in Falling Leaves – $5.99:
City Color Eyeshadow Trio features three complimentary shades in one travel-friendly palette. Trio includes neutral shades in matte burnt orange, metallic bronze and champagne highlight.
50% off with code IPSY50 until 2/29/16.
My thoughts: I didn’t think I’d like these colors, but I really do! The bronze is my favorite.

Once again, I pay $10 a month for these bags. I love seeing what comes my way each month! The value received this month was $68.62. This month’s value is even higher than last month’s, and last month’s was much higher than other previous months! I liked that this month’s products all followed the eye theme. My favorite item is the eye shadow.  

If you’d like to sign up to receive your own Glam Bag each month, click here! If you got this month’s bag, what did you think?

What I’ve Been Reading #109

Friday, January 22, 2016


My friend who got me into the Sullivan series by Bella Andre let me borrow a book she wrote in collaboration with Jennifer Skully called Breathless In Love. This is book 1 in a series called The Maverick Billionaires. Instead of family by blood, the Maverick Billionaires are “sexy, self-made men from the wrong side of town who survived hell together and now have everything they ever wanted. But when each Maverick falls head-over-heels for an incredible woman he never saw coming, he will soon find that true love is the only thing he ever really needed.” The first book is focused on Will, a race car driver and business man.

“Will Franconi has a dark past that he's kept a closely guarded secret--very few people have ever heard his real story and he plans to keep it that way. After surviving a hellish childhood, he’s now living the dream life where everything he touches turns to gold. But something’s missing. He doesn’t quite know what until a simple letter from a teenage boy brings Harper Newman into his life. A woman who just might fill up the empty places inside him...if only he could ever be worthy of her love. When a man has more money than he could possibly spend in five lifetimes, Harper has to ask herself what Will Franconi could possibly want from a woman like her? She’s learned the hard way that rich men always get what they want no matter the cost. If it was just herself she had to worry about, Harper would manage, but she’s guardian to her younger brother who depends on her for everything. After nearly losing his life in a car crash, she’s vowed never to let anyone hurt him ever again. Still, sometimes Harper can't help but long to change her story from one of an always-cautious woman to an adventurous tale of a heroine who’s wild and free...especially when Will's kisses and caresses make her utterly breathless. And as he begins to reveal his story to her, she discovers that he's so much more than just another wealthy, privileged man. He's kind and giving, and he fills up all the spaces inside of her heart that have been empty for so long.”

Harper’s brother Jeremy is an interesting character who adds a lot to this book. He suffered a traumatic brain injury which leaves him like a 7 year old mentally. He brings out the best in Will, who pretty much falls for him before he falls for Harper. Harper worries that Jeremy will get attached to any boyfriend of hers and she is cautious with getting too close to Will, but Jeremy proves his maturity and Will proves his devotion to both of them. Yes, this is a romance, but it is also about family and commitment.

What have you been reading lately?

Up and Away

Thursday, January 21, 2016

On Sunday, Gabbie had a birthday party at the bowling alley so I told the boys we could go bowling too. Unfortunately, they were sold out, so we had to quickly come up with an alternative plan. We decided to ride the ferris wheel at Scheels. It costs $1 each. Zachary loved it, but I was scared!

He’s waving to Simon, who also loved it!

Have you ever been on an indoor ferris wheel?

Eco-Friendly Pest Control Tips

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

My friends at Quality All Care – a locally-owned lawn care & pest control company – provided today’s content!


When it’s cold outside, outdoor pests become desperate for warmth. They’re looking for a nice cozy home for the winter, and once they find it, they invite their friends and family. To stop your home from becoming a bed and breakfast for these rodents and insects, take these simple steps to prevent them from getting inside, and then getting rid of them if they do. Here at Quality All-Care , we prefer to use solutions that are environmentally friendly, so your family and pets remain safe while your home becomes pest-free.

Advice From Professionals

Seal Up Your Home

Bugs, ants, and spiders will make use of the smallest holes, and mice can squeeze through an opening the size of a nickel. Replace or fix any broken screens, and check for holes in your window and door frames. Finally, walk around your foundation and seal up those holes, too. Use copper mesh or steel wool, and seal it in place with caulk or foam. You can even buy foam that has a unique scent that is irritating to rodents.

Eliminate Odors

Try to keep food in air-tight containers. Take the trash out regularly, and cover all of your garbage cans. Don’t keep pet food out at night and always clean up any spills or dirt as soon as they happen. Also, try to keep fruit in the refrigerator.

Don’t Let Water Leak

Rodents and insects love standing water. Fix leaky faucets or clogged drains, and make sure any dark, damp areas in your home are well ventilated.

Keep Firewood Away

Firewood should be stored at least 20-30 feet from your house. Not only can stacks of wood house hundreds of termites, but rodents like to make their homes there.


If pests do get in your home, scents are a good way to irritate them and get them to leave. Rodents hate the smell of pine trees, so get some fresh clippings, or buy bags from a store made for this purpose, and put them where you know rodents are living. The scent of citrus does a great job deterring bugs and spiders, so spray this scent wherever you think they might be getting inside.


For rodents, you can use live traps, snap traps, or glue boards to help cut down the population once you see evidence of rodents in your home. For bugs and roaches, put glue boards on the floor or counter, maybe even behind a cupboard, where you know they like to roam.

Knowledge is Prevention

Once you see a rodent or bugs in your home, it’s hard to be confident that the infestation has been resolved without help from professionals. Pests can live inside your walls, chew your electric wiring, contaminate your food, and carry disease, so knowing they’re gone for good will help you rest easy. Here at Quality All-Care, our Kansas City pest control service utilizes a five-cycle treatment schedule to ensure your home stays pest-free for good!. The most eco-friendly way to eliminate an infestation is through knowledge and experience, knowing where to attack, which products to use, and never causing unnecessary harm. If you think you’re housing an infestation of any kind, we’re here to help!

While I hope none of you experience a pest problem, I hope that these tips are useful! Thank you to Quality All-Care for the post!

It’s Okay #99

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

It’s okay…

…that I knit Dave a hat and I liked the accent yarn I used enough to start a new hat with it immediately!

…that we went to Ikea and now we’re doing a few organizing projects.

…that this week I had a memory of my high school French teacher so I decided to find her and now we have been emailing each other.

…that since we missed the first snow this year, this small thin layer was a big deal:


…that it’s supposed to snow today too.

What’s okay with you this week?

Custom Dress From

Monday, January 18, 2016

I was recently contacted by the kind people at and asked if I would be interested in ordering a clothing item customized to my own measurements. Of course I agreed, being that I tend to have trouble fitting into regularly sized clothes, and because I loved that Lurap stands for Love-UR-APpearance!

“, an online women’s fashion garment website offering Regular, Petite and Plus Size garments to women in US and Canada. We also offer Custom Sizing up to 36W along with Custom Styling (Like changing the length of the garment/sleeves/Neck Line etc).”

Lurap offers many clothing options including dresses, shirts, skirts, and jackets and I finally decided to try the Carmine Print Dress, because I thought the style would work on my figure.

carmine-print-dress_lu2150516_front  carmine-print-dress_lu2150516_back

I provided my measurements and I was able to customize the dress’s length, neckline, and sleeve style, but I chose to keep them as they were shown. I would say the dress definitely looks better on the model than it does on me, but I do like it and I did wear it!

dress  dress2

The dress is well-constructed and includes a side zipper. The top part is a smooth, stretchy material, while the bottom feels like cotton. The skirt material is a bit see-through, so I layered a thin skirt underneath. It is very light-weight, which means that I will be able to wear it in warmer weather as well and pair it with sandals, instead of boots as I did when I wore the dress this weekend. It can also be dressed up with heels, as the model above did.

Right now, if you register at, you will get $50 off your order. Most items run between $50 and $100 (custom size is included but customization of sleeve lenght, etc. is extra) so you will be able to get a great deal with this offer!

For more information, visit Lurap at facebook, twitter, and pinterest!

What do you think of the dress I chose?

What I’ve Been Reading #108

Friday, January 15, 2016


I had It Must Be Your Love by Bella Andre, book 11 in the Sullivan Series, with me in Florida. It was recently suggested that these books would make good beach reads, and I agreed! However, every time I tried to read by the pool, it didn’t work out very well because I needed to watch my kids. In any case, I did finish reading this book while we were in Florida!

“Successful Seattle Realtor Mia Sullivan is nobody’s fool…apart from that one week five years ago when she gave her heart to a sexy musician who gave her nothing in return but a few sinfully perfect days—and nights—in his bed. Though she swears she never wants to see him again, he’s the one man she's never been able to forget. One of the hottest rock stars in the world, Ford Vincent can have any woman he wants…except Mia Sullivan. But he knows millions of strangers singing along with his songs can’t fill the hole inside him. Only Mia’s love has the power to do that—so he vows to do anything and everything it takes to win her heart again. From the first moment they see each other again, intense sparks of attraction fly. But can Mia and Ford finally rediscover a love strong enough to last forever?”

Andre’s books each seem to address a well-known romantic trope. This one is the lost lover trope, or the one that got away trope. Although both Ford and Mia haven’t forgotten each other since the last time they met, it is Ford who realizes and decides to convince Mia to give him another chance. She is reluctant at first, but eventually comes around after she spends more time with him and gets to know him better. I wouldn’t say this one is one of my series favorites, but as an easy romantic read, it wasn’t bad.

What have you been reading lately?

Alligators In The Everglades

Thursday, January 14, 2016

While we were in Florida, we did something that none of us have ever done before – went on an airboat in the Everglades. We did this at Sawgrass Recreation Park in Weston, FL. If I can tell you one thing about an airboat, it is loud. And very windy!

The alligators come right up to the boat.

So did the birds – our captain was feeding them.


After the ride, we got to go to a little zoo type area where we could hold baby alligators if we wanted to.


They are really cute! Have you ever been to the Everglades?