Sephora Makeup Class

Today I wanted to branch out a little, so I signed up for a “No Makeup” Makeup Class at Sephora. The class was a lot of fun and I learned a lot about makeup. I am excited to try more of these classes in the future. The classes are free if you are a Beauty Insider, and they are held outside of store hours. You are given your own brushes at your own station, and the staff teaches the class by demonstrating the techniques and choosing colors that are flattering to you. I loved it! I loved the products that I used and bought a few of them to take home that I wanted to write about here

It Cosmetics – Your Skin But Better – CC Cream (Light)

This product was great. I have been looking for a color corrector for a while that is not as heavy as a full coverage foundation. This is perfect – The staff who was teaching the class said that a lot of people have been asking for this lately.


tarte – Rainforest of The Sea – Drink of H2O Hydrating Boost Moisturizer

We got to test this moisturizer during the class and it was great, especially during the dry winter months


Nars – The Multiple (Maui)

I was very nervous to try a cream blush because I have a lot of natural redness in my skin. This also looks like it is going to be pretty dark, but after I had evened out my base with the CC cream, this looked great and I was really excited about it.


Dior – Dior Addict Lip Glow (Lilac)

I am usually not a fan of any type of lipstick. I am a standard clear lip balm kind of girl. This lip glow is perfect, it gives just a little bit of color and leaves lips shiny.


The Old Reliables

There were a few things that I tried, that I actually preferred my normal version. Those are Dior Diorshow Mascara in Black and my new Glossier Boy Brow and Glossier Concealer. I bought a new stick of mascara and saved the rest of these for what I already had at home. Recently, I have also really been loving the Elf Eyebrow kit in Medium. It is only $3!

I was excited to have the opportunity to try this class and will plan to go to more in the future!


Sisters’ Cookbook Challenge

Our fourth week of the challenge started today and it was my choice. I chose a cider-braised chicken dish so that I could use the Le Creuset that I got for Christmas. I halved the recipe because it seemed like a lot of food. A couple of things about this recipe that I learned are that you should salt the meat before you dredge it in the seasoned flour (mine was lacking some salt) and, that you should carefully measure the liquid (my sauce was very loose). The result was a hearty chicken dish, but I think if I made it again I could improve upon it.

This Week’s Recipe

Sisters’ Pictures


Sisters’ Cookbook Challenge

My sister made a great choice with this week’s recipe. Zucchini Lasagna with Spicy Turkey Sauce. I took a few liberties with the recipe, I used ground chicken in place of turkey because it was on sale. I also used store-bought sugar-free sauce that I spiced up with red pepper flakes and added fresh oregano, basil, and some sautéed onion. I made all of the components over the weekend and then made a nice weeknight meal. I did not miss the noodles at all. I will definitely make this again.

This Week’s Recipe

I took a few pictures of the process again – One tip that I have is to be sure to cut the zucchini relatively thick, some of my thinner ones turned to mush when I baked them.

Sisters’ Pictures



Kansas City Restaurant Week

Restaurant is one of my favorite weeks of the year. Not only do you have endless excuses to dine out with friends and try new restaurants, but you get to do all of this at a cheaper cost, with 10% of the benefits going to charity. In the last couple of years, I have really gotten into making my reservations ahead so that I can try places that I don’t get to eat at on a regular basis. Here are my choices for this year:

  1. Third Street Social
  2. Eddie V’s
  3. Lidia’s
  4. Le Fou Frog
  5. Michael Smith

Third Street Social – Lee’s Summit

This is a new restaurant in Lee’s Summit. I had heard great things about it so was excited that they were participating in restaurant week this year. We ate here on the very first day of restaurant week and the food was delicious. I ordered a pretty heavy meal and was only able to finish half of it, but the good thing about that was that I got to have it for lunch the next day as well!

First Course: New England Clam Chowder

Second Course: Chicken Fried Steak – Beef Tenderloin, Chorizo Verde Gravy, Peas, Onions (pictured)

Third Course: Oatmeal Cream Pie – Chewy Oatmeal Cookie, Buttercream

Eddie V’s – Country Club Plaza

I had almost forgotten how good this was until I just wrote it down below. Eddie V’s is a great steakhouse that has classic and delicious food.

First Course: Crispy Salt and Pepper Shrimp – Battered and Wok-Seared with a Spicy Sweet Soy Ginger Sauce and Vegetables

Second Course: 8 oz Center Cut Filet Mignon – Specially Aged, Midwestern Grain Fed Beef Add: Cognac Sauce & Scalloped Potatoes

Third Course: Banana’s Foster Butter Cake – Butter Pecan Ice Cream AND Wild Berry Sorbet – Served with Freshly Baked Homemade Cookies

Lidia’s – Freight House

Lidia’s for lunch during Restaurant Week is a must every year. They offer a three course lunch for $15. We had a nice Monday lunch at the newly rebuilt bar with half-glass wine pairings!

First Course: Red Wine Arancini

Second Course: Lidia’s Signature Pasta Trio – Short Rib Ravioli, Rigatoni with Tomato and Ricotta, Pappardelle with Shrimp

Third Course: Chocolate Almond Torta with Amaretti Crunch and Maple Cream

Le Fou Frog – River Market

This was a middle of the week dinner and it was excellent. Each time our waitress described one of the menu items, I immediately wanted it – She just happened to describe the Bourguignon last. What a great meal!

First Course: Pork Belly Over Garlicky White Beans

Second Course: Boeuf Bourguignon – Beef Stew in Red Wine served over Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Third Course: Profiterole Au Tatin

Michael Smith – Crossroads

This trip was a repeat from last year when we had a Restaurant Week dinner. I need to eat here more – The food and service was great. I wanted to try the Ciopinno because I knew this was not something I would normally make for myself. It was a light and delicious broth with great seafood. This will probably be a 3 year in a row trip.

First Course: House Made Potato Gnocchi – Wild mushrooms and parmesan

Second Course: Ciopinno – Mussels, shrimp, bay scallops, hearty tomato broth

Third Course: Chocolate Pudding Tart – Meringue

Sisters’ Cookbook Challenge

For our second week of the Sisters’ Cookbook Challenge, my sister chose a crockpot jambalaya. I lightened this meal up a bit by using chicken andouille sausage instead of pork. I also used shrimp and chicken breast. The result was a veggie-packed jambalaya with leaner protein. The only drawback to the recipe that we used was that it is extremely spicy! Delicious, but spicy!

This Week’s Recipe

I took a few pictures along the way to capture the process and all of the beautiful vegetables.

Sisters’ Pictures



New Year, New You


New Year, New You! No matter how cliche this sounds, this year is going to be the year that I make it true. This week was the first week of 2017, I am working towards my goals to be sure that I reach them this year. I am planning to write an update each week so that I can keep myself honest and keep track of how I’m doing — New Year, New ME!


Get in the Habit of Working Out

  • Make working out a priority. At least 3 times per week.
  • Try at least 3 fitness related events


Eat for Health

  • Eat 3 meals and 1 snack per day using the 80/20 rule. (17/4 Meals, 6/1 Snacks)


Branch Out

  • Try new types of fitness classes
  • Try a new restaurant, coffee shop, or bar every other week.
  • Attend at least 6 foodie events.
  • Learn to cook something new at least once per month.
  • Learn to make 3 cocktails
  • Start a blog


Drink for Enjoyment 

I really did not want to make negative goals this year. The purpose of this is really to limit caffeine and alcohol. In 2016, I did a decent job of limiting my coffee and soda intake, alcohol is really the one things that is left that I have not limited at this point. I spend too much money (and calories) on booze, so I am going to work to drink for enjoyment rather than just to be social or (even worse) just to get drunk. When I drink this year, I want to drink to enjoy events, friends, and even to full enjoy the drink itself! Wish me luck!

  • Drink 1 thermos or less of coffee per day with 1 day bi-weekly as an exception.
  • Drink soda water instead of soda. Limit to 1 soda or less bi-weekly.
  • Limit alcohol to 7 drinks per week with a once per month exception.

Sisters’ Cookbook Challenge

A couple of years ago, to keep in touch and give us a reason to talk with one another and share something, my sisters and I had the idea to do a “Sister’s Cookbook Challenge.” Each week, we would alternate choosing a recipe that each of us would cook in our respective homes. This continued for a couple of months, but then it faded out. This year, we decided to try it again. However – in the spirit of the new year, we are choosing healthy recipes. This week was my week. I chose a stuffed acorn squash with sausage, apples, mushrooms, and gruyere cheese. It turned out pretty nicely. I am excited to try it again sometime in the future using turkey sausage rather than pork sausage – I think that will lighten it up even more without losing the flavor!

This Week’s Recipe:

Sisters’ Pictures