The Shutdown and How it Shutdown My Life


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From the cartoonist Joe Heller.

It has been a bit of a anxiety filled 10 days for me and my partner due to the stupid government shutdown. I am a very dedicated Democrat, so I will avoid any mean name calling, try to understand why the Republicans are shutting down the government, and Avoid my urge to have a pity party for one (millions are affected just like me). I don’t want to be political or stir up any emotions because I just don’t feel one person can make change like I use to when I was 16. All I know is that this government shitstorm is affecting me and it feels really shitty to be used as a pawn for government rhetoric.

How is it affecting me? Do I work for the federal government? Nope. But the job I did get requires a government background check before I can officially start. I did all the necessary paperwork on time and when it was sent to the government I knew it was out of my hands (and my employers). I was suppose to start my new job this Monday but most federal employees are on furlow, including those that do the security checks. OMFG! I can’t start my fucking job! There is nothing I can do but wait with the rest of America.

I know a lot of people aren’t affected by the shutdown in the way I am. People just don’t realize how important things are until they don’t have them. For example, not having government open has highlighted to me how it is needed. Or health insurance. I have been uninsured for 10 months because I wasn’t offered it by my previous employer and I cannot afford it from a private company. Or marriage. If someone said you could not get married than you might realize what an important right that is. The prospect of marrying my long time partner is such a special chose. Even education. Look at the courageous Malala Yousafzai who stood up for women’s education in Pakistan and continues to amaze all of us.

I guess my point is to share how a non-government person is effected by the shutdown. My life is literally on hold and I am in financial limbo. There are so many sad stories about wives of fallen soldiers not getting benefits, our gem of national parks being inaccessible to the public, and men and women who work for our government waiting to see how, and when, the Political parties will come together and do their jobs.

I am just so over it.

love, Sarah

My Favorite Cleaning Supplies


Favorite Cleaning Supplies

I hate cleaning. I hate it more than cooking [is that possible?] Yet, I have to do it because it is what being an adult is all about. In the dream world I would have a cleaning lady, but that isn’t the greatest DIY mentality, is it?

Since I have been home for a while now, I have found a few products that really work. This is your guide to cleaning the laziest and easiest way possible. As I discover more, I will share and update this page! All of these products can be found at Target.

 

viva

Viva Paper Towels

Viva Paper Towels: I can be a bit of a paper towel whore and waste a ton of paper towels around the house. I know, I am horrible! But when I found Viva, my world has changed! They feel like rags and you really can clean up way more than with those cheap paper towels. Totally worth the extra $1 [and much less wasteful].

 

Windex-Multi-Surface-Cleaner-Antibacterial

Windex Multi-Surface Cleaner

Windex Multi-Surface Cleaner: I use this for every surface in the house! Windows, tv, tables, sinks, counters, dressers, whatever! It is anti-bacterial and doesn’t bleach whatever you are wearing. I have ruined a few different pieces of clothes by spraying 409 with Bleach in close proximity. I really love this product and have it stashed in multiple rooms.

 

dawn platinum

Dawn Platinum Dish Soap

Dawn Platinum Dish Soap: I am one of those unfortunate souls who doesn’t own a dish washing machine. I know, #1stworldproblems. But I have gone back and forth between many dish soaps and this is by far the most amazing dish soap ever. It cleans quickly and it really does give you the quality of an overnight soak in 5 minutes. Plus, Dawn was the foremost product used to clean animals during the BP oil spill – I love supporting them.

 

Dish Gloves

Dish Gloves

Dish Gloves: I have yet to try these adorable Fred and Friends Tuff Dish Tattoo Kitchen Gloves (as pictured) but I hope to one day soon! I never do dishes without my dish gloves. Often the cheap ones rip easily, so I recommend buying a little better quality gloves. When they do rip, I will go on strike until new ones are purchased.  I can’t stand dishes anymore without gloves.

 

Microfiber Cloths

Microfiber Cloths

Microfiber Cloths: I bought three microfiber cloths at Big Lots a few years ago and they are my best friend while dusting. I live in the desert so dust is a pretty annoying, and constant, issue. They pick up dust in one swipe and then can be thrown in the wash for a next round.

love, Sarah

Britney’s “Work Bitch” Video is Exact Perfection


The premiere of “Work Bitch” came at the perfect time in my life. Isn’t that just how Britney does it? I am getting married in 2 months (!) and I have fallen off the working out train. This was due to many reasons including the rash from HELL that was spread by overheating. Maybe one day I will share that story with you. If there is any time in my life I need to be reminded to work, it is now. As Britney says,

You want a hot body? You want a Bugatti?
You want a Maserati? You better work bitch
You want a Lamborghini? Sip martinis?
Look hot in a bikini? You better work bitch

YAnnotateou wanna live fancy? Live in a big mansion?
Party in France?
You better work bitch, you better work bitch

It is nice to be reminded that that shit takes WORK. I do want a hot body! I want to look hot in a bikini [honeymoon in Cancun]! I want to live fancy! So, I gotta get to work, bitch.

Of course, the video is just mind-blowing and amazing in the way only Britney can pull off. It makes no sense at all. She is dancing in the desert, in a pool of hammerhead sharks, being pulled around by women dressed as S&M cats, exploding manikin heads … just perfection.

Thank you, Britney, for reminding me I gotta work hard, like it’s my profession.

love, Sarah

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eSalon DIY Hair Dye Review


eSalonNote: This post is in no way affiliated with eSalon and they do not know I am posting it! This is a true personal experience.

Today I got a little package from eSalon with my personalized hair dye [I have it on automated mail … a good and bad thing, as you will find out]. I have now used eSalon twice to home-dye my hair. Without throwing a crazy amount of pictures of myself on this blog, I will try to explain both of my hair dying experiences with eSalon and why I recommend it. Here is a link to 50% off your first dye! For only $9.95 you can try it!

esalon photo before

Hair BEFORE the first time using eSalon.

eSalon after pic

Hair AFTER the first time using eSalon.

  1. First of all, it’s pretty cheap for hair dye [$25 after shipping without a discount code] and is salon quality hair dye.  I have been pretty poor for many years and can’t remember the last time I could afford to pay a professional to dye my hair. Oh wait, a few years ago I did go to a beauty school to get highlights… I looked like I was from 2001 with chunky blond highlights. Being cheap and going to a beauty school can sometimes work out, or sometimes you end up looking like shit! At least with eSalon you have some control.
  2. They really did pick a great color for my hair. On their website they say that the color is crafted for each individual, and I believe it. The color I got was had some red hues, but didn’t turn my hair maroon but more of a chestnut. I speak from personal experience here — when I was 17 I dyed my hair auburn and it turned bright maroon. I rocked it for a while, but at 26 I don’t know if I could pull that off.
  3. They put your name on all of the orders [which is just so damn cute]!
  4. It is mailed directly to your house with all the supplies you need. Yes, it includes the dye, 2 pairs of gloves, the conditioner, everything.

How to Use eSalon

  1. Go online and order your color. It was ask for the state of your hair, last time colored, gray issues, the look you want, your skin tone, eye color, the color you like, and leaves room for an additional description.
  2. Get the dye in the mail. I love getting mail!
  3. Put on an ugly shirt. Move your bath mats out of the way. Put old rags on the bathroom counter and the floor. You will ruin anything in your path with this hair dye! One of my bathmats was already sacrificed to the hair Gods.
  4. Section off your hair into 4 sections.
  5. Mix together all of the ingredients as said in the directions.
  6. Start dying! Start with your roots. I like to use my hand [with the gloves of course] rather than a coloring brush. I just feel like I have more control over it. Be prepared to make a mess.
  7. Each person using eSalon has their own directions for the order of dying and the duration of time you need to wait. The first directions I got were amazing and I followed them to the T. The second time I was told different directions and I don’t totally buy it. The directions said to just do my roots and then add water to the remainder of the dye and “wash my hair with the dye” leaving it in for only a few minutes. I didn’t follow these directions, but now I wonder if there was some logic to it. I wish eSalon explained the timing. The directions basically say, trust us blindly.”
  8. You can now take off your gloves while you wait for it to process. I didn’t realize there were multiple pairs of gloves in the kit and tried to re-use my original gloves. It was a fucking mess!
  9. Wash out the dye. Make sure you clean the shower/tub before it dries. I feel like it would for sure stain the tub.
  10. Clean up the mess you inevitably made.
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4. Sectioning off my hair in 4 quads.

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6. Applying the dye to the first section.

Final Thoughts and Review

  • I am happy with the results. I feel like for the money the color stays well and keeps my hair healthy. Most of all, I love the color and I think it really looks natural.
  • I would much prefer to pay someone to do my hair, but unfortunately, I do not have this luxury.  This is a great alternative to buying a box at the store or going to a beauty school.
  • They have automatic shipping and payments. This had it’s benefits. I automatically got it in the mail and felt obligated to actually dye my hair since I already paid for it. My fiancee was not so happy to see it in the mail because we are really cutting back month because I am in between jobs, but this happy accident allowed me to get my hair did. I also got a email warning me of the shipment and charge with ample time to cancel if needed – I am just lazy and didn’t cancel it.
  • For the next time, I will call them ahead of time and make sure I am coloring my hair correctly post the initial dye. I am sure they will be responsive and change my directions accordingly.

ESalon was mentioned in my beauty post called Real Girl’s Beauty Must-Haves. I am constantly looking to update this list and add more beauty loves. Check it out!

love, Sarah

My Thoughts on Staying at Home


Hey my friends! I am sorry I have been so MIA. I am taking a very needed, and unusual, month off work. I have had a ton of changes in the last few months with jobs and thought it was time for a little update.

I was going to start work as a prison librarian, but unfortunately [and fortunately] the initially salary they offered me was dropped significantly when I received the official offer. Bastards! I was a total mess, cried for about 3 days straight, and then bucked up and started applying for more jobs while I allowed them to think I was excited to start work for them. Since I already had one real job pending, I felt comfortable putting in my 2 weeks notice to my current job. My last day of work was September 11th and I was suppose to start at the prison on September 16th. In the meantime, I got a great job offer at a corporate office doing data management. I took it without even trying to negotiate. Yeah, I know that is pretty dumb, but the offer was exactly where I wanted to be out of graduate school while my previous offers were fit for someone just out of college — actually I made the same right out of my bachelor’s degree that I was being offered after a masters. Bastards!

So, I took the corporate job and can no longer say I am a real librarian. Do I need to change my blog name to The DIY Data Manager?

In the meantime, I can’t start the corporate job until October 14th because of paperwork and background checks. I have a month to be a housewife and homemaker! Since we won’t get a paycheck for me for a month, I am pretty much stuck at home taking care of our life on a strict budget.

Now, my thoughts of staying at home. It is hard and I give stay at home wives/moms/husbands/dads way more credit. I knew I wasn’t domestic, but this experience has taught me I am not a good homemaker! There are days when I don’t get dressed and days where I realize I have spent an hour just walking around my house and have accomplished nothing. There are other days when I kill it and redo a whole room. I am super grateful to have this small time to wear the domestic hat because it has changed my whole perception of how I see this role. It has allowed me to spend time with my family, take care of things around the house that were on the “to-do” list, and I have been able to take care of my fiancee and put him first. Yet, the drawbacks are huge. Others [like my parents] think I am doing nothing and can assist them in any moment. My fiancee and I have already had the “I have been working all day, what have you been doing” fight a few times and it sucks because I am doing stuff but it isn’t measurable like working is. Personally, I feel like being the one who stays at home is actually more of a sacrifice than working. I am too selfish and undomestic to do it properly. With that said, I have so enjoyed it because I know I will never do it again.  I have found dressing up like a 50s housewife makes it more fun!

housewife

To all you stay at home people, you have my respect. I thought it would be such an easy job and I am happy to have been proven wrong.

love, Sarah

DIY Vintage Inspired Printable Bookplates


VIntage Bookplate Collage

I have been trying to find the perfect bookplate to accompany a favor at our wedding. I have found some amazing bookplates but cannot decide what to do! While I go crazy with bookplates, why don’t you all take a look and see if anything strikes you!

Incase you don’t know what a bookplate is, shame on you. No, my goal is not to scold my readers but a bookplate is simply a label you put on all your books in your personal library. So when friends borrow your books, you can say, “Hey bitch. It has a bookplate on it with my name. Don’t pretend you thought you bought the book.” As you can see, I don’t like loaning out my books. I am a stingy librarian!

Free Bookplate PrintablesBOOKPLATE-DOWNLOAD

Besotted Natural History Bookplate

Besotted Brand Free Bookplates

Besotted Vintage Bookplate

B9Objects Free Bookplates

Benign Objects Vintage Bookplate

vintage-labels

Lunagirl Images Vintage Labels

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Design Sponge Made with Love Bookplate

Just to add a few other options that I love [but I have to pay for], check out this Etst store Oiseaux.  I am also considering buying these from Zazzle because they are very art deco. Do you think some of the free ones are better than this? Please share your opinion! I am stuck.

love, Sarah

L’Chaim, לחיים, TO LIFE


hebrew jewish

I am Jewish and around this time of the year we have the high holidays, or high holy days. I am the kind of Jew who goes to temple on these holidays… sometimes. I really do love being Jewish, but see it more as a part of my heritage, story, and lineage than a religion.

Friday sundown to Saturday sundown was the high holiday Yom Kipper. It is my favorite services but by far the most depressing “holiday.” On this day you fast and atone for your sins. Yippee! This year I tried to fast because the purpose of fasting is to break down your walls, become a bit weak so you can let faith and God into your heart.  The last time I successfully fasted was in college and I have vivid, almost pornographic, dreams about chicken nuggets. This time when I fasted it did make me extremely emotional! I don’t know if it was God entering my heart, but I will say that being empty and weak elevated my emotions.  I felt overcome with tears at moments and unable to stop myself from laughing at others. Two embarrassing moments of the service: (1) in a moment of silent prayer, my stomach started yelling at me in a way I have never experienced! It was gurgling loudly for long stretches at a time. My mom turns to me and whispers, “Is that YOU?” (2) In services for Yom Kipper they have an amazing list of everything you could possibly do that needs atoning for — they really cover all bases for you. One of them was sexual immorality. The entire synagog reads aloud these sins in English after the Rabbi reads them in Hebrew. I said quite loudly, “Please forgive us for my sexual immortality.” My mom started giggling and I lost my composure. If you can’t tell, me [and my mother it seems] were those kids in class that talked, whispered, and giggled. Nothing has changed!

All in all, the day was a success and I ate a sandwich right after services. It was very nice to reflect on the year and remember times I was less than perfect. It also felt nice to know I wasn’t alone and that it is ok to have faults. The Jewish New Year, year 5774, is a time to celebrate but reflect and make this next year a better, healthier, and fuller year. To that I say L’CHAIM! That means “TO LIFE” and usually is followed by a lot of routy drinking.

love, Sarah

Britney and Miley’s Collaboration on “Bangerz”


A lot of people have things to say about Miley Cyrus. I personally don’t really get the big deal! Am I the only one? I do feel uncomfortable when she sticks her tongue out, but I think she wants us to feel uncomfortable. She is for sure trying some different things out and, all in all, I thinks it’s pretty funny and awkward. Plus, I love the music coming out of Miley’s album.

Since I am a crazy Britney Spears fan (and it is Britney Spears Wednesday) I had to address Britney doing a duet with Miley! The track list was shared yesterday and their song together is “SMS (BANGERZ).” If it is anything like Miley’s other songs, and the new one “Wrecking Ball,” I am sure it was will catchy and amazing! If they do a video together, it will be like Miley twerking on Venus — because Britney is Venus, obviously.

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From the brilliant mind of Jen Lewis on Buzzfeed.

For more art history ridiculousness, check out the Buzzfeed post Miley Cyrus Twerks on Famous Paintings. It really will make you smile.

love, Sarah

DIY: Change Your Bathroom Faucet


bathroom faucet

Top right is the old faucet, remaining photos are the new one.

We did this project a few weeks ago all by ourselves! It was not the easiest home DIY, but it really made a big impact on our little bathroom.

We bought the faucet at Lowes. It is by Glacier Bay called the Teacup Bath Faucet for only $36. I have included the actual video we used as our guide. I just love that we can do DIY home projects by accessing YouTube and not having to call my dad.

What I learned from this is that having a pedastel sink makes changing the hoses lines a bitch! I ended up doing most of the tightening because my fiance’s hand couldn’t fit.  When you have a normal sink with cabinets it is much easier to gain access  to the supply lines. Did you even know there are little hoses that connect the water from the pipes to the faucet? As you can see, I am a super beginner but I did it! It isn’t leaking and it looks all vintage and cute.

So, some tips we learned along the way:

  • Have lots of rags. It look us a few times to get the faucet working without leaks from the hose lines. We made a mess!
  • Use hose lines that have easy to tighten ends. I am not using the correct terms here, but the ones we had were metal and we had to tighten them with a wrench to connect to the pipes. This is why the pedastel sink was such a bitch! It is very hard to get a wrench into a place your fingers can barely fit. In the end, I ended up hand tightening them. OUCH. They have ones with plastic connections that are really easy to tighten by hand and secure.
  • Spend the extra $1 on plumber’s putty that is is stain-free. The old faucet was definitly held in place with a cheaper plumber’s putty and it took us a long time to clean it up.
  • It will probably take 2 hours more than you anticipated and result in a few fights with your partner. In the end, your bathroom will look brand new for under $50 with a bit of time and sweat!

love, Sarah

Getting Reacquainted with Robyn


Remember Robyn from the 90s with that amazing song “Show Me Love?” Well, I am about 3 years behind, but Robyn released an album “Body Talk” that is totally incredible. I just had a craving to hear “Call Your Girlfriend” and have listened to it about 4 times already this morning. So, I thought: why not share it with you all? The video is pretty simple and amazing. It is one long shot and Robyn just dances with everything she has. I don’t know, it just feels honest, sad, and improvised. Different!

And another great song from “Body Talk” called “Dancing on my Own.” I do not miss these days – crushing on a guy to only turn around and he is making out with someone else.

Lastly, her original “Show Me Love.” Timeless pop!

love, Sarah