Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Five months with Caroline

Happy 5 months, baby girl!

I know I say this every month, but you continue to be such a sweet and happy baby.  You love to laugh and you make us laugh every time you do.  You love to put anything and everything into your mouth and I think it won't be long before we see some little teeth arriving.  Your eyes are the prettiest shade of blue (just like Papa T's) and we think they'll stay that way.  We pray for you every day that there will never be a day that you know apart from God.  It's hard to believe that He loves you even more than we do!  We are so thankful for you and the joy you've brought us over these past five months.

Mama and Daddy

Four Months with Caroline
Three Months with Caroline
Two Months with Caroline
One Month with Caroline

Monday, June 17, 2013

And the winner is...

Hali Crane!

Congratulations girl!  I'm so excited for you to get some extra free Arbonne goodness.  I'll e-mail you with the details.

For everyone else, thanks so much for participating in the giveaway.  It was a great success!  I will be doing more of these over the next few months, so stay tuned for your chance to win.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Things I am currently digging...Arbonne edition + a giveaway!!

Yay!  I'm so excited to do my very first giveaway today!!  Read below to see how to enter.

This month for my things I'm currently digging, it's all about Arbonne!  I am basically obsessed with these products and I really believe in them and this company.  To help you understand more about why I became an independent consultant with this company, please read this post.

Okay!  So, here are the six products that I am currently digging.  It was really hard to narrow it down to six products, but I decided to spare you from reading my blog for hours and hours.  You're welcome!

1.  Makeup Primer  I used to use a very well-known makeup primer from Sephora that I loved.  I ran out of it and decided to try Arbonne's primer (the price point was almost exactly the same).  Oohhh my goodness.  I had no idea what I was missing!  This primer is like a miracle worker.  It fills in fine lines, diminishes the look of my pores, and feels so good on my skin.  Also, this primer really helps to soak up excess oils on my face and helps to balance my skin tone and texture.

2.  Made In The Shade Self-Tanner  Sooo I live in Massachusetts now and just in case you aren't familiar with the area, it's very very cold.  For most of the year.  There aren't too many good beach days and I can honestly say that my legs have seen the sun approximately 3 times so far this year.  Which is why I looove this self-tanner.  It actually feels like I'm doing something good for my skin instead of damaging it in the sun.  It is moisturizing, creates a natural-looking tan, and doesn't have a yucky smell.  

3.  Re-Mineralizing Body Lotion  Like I mentioned in my other Arbonne post, most skincare and cosmetic products contain mineral oil, a product that has no business being on your skin.  Even lotions that boast being "all natural" usually still contain mineral oil....go check your labels!  Anyone that knows me well knows that I put lotion on every. day.  The kind of lotion is really important to me.  Can't be greasy.  Can't have a strong scent.  Has to last all day.  This lotion has it all.  It feels and smells amazing.  It softens my skin and contains vitamins and minerals that make it look great.  AND no mineral oil!

4. Hair & Scalp Revitalizer  I just had a baby in January, which puts me smack dab in the middle of incredibly awkward post-partum hair.  Moms - can I get an amen??  This stuff is so great.  It stimulates re-growth and makes my hair feel super soft and manageable.

5.  Advanced Repair Night Cream  As mentioned above, I love lotions...and this definitely does not exclude face moisturizers.  I already bragged about my favorite daytime face moisturizer on last month's TIACD post.  This nighttime moisturizer is my favorite Arbonne product to date.  It is thick, but doesn't feel thick on your face.  It contains anti-aging properties that help reduce fine lines, increase cell turn-over, and increase your skin's firmness.  When I wake up in the morning, my face still feels moisturized, but it doesn't feel greasy.  I almost get sad to wash it off.

6.  Arbonne Baby Care  This entire line is fantastic!  I love the fact that I am using healthy products on my baby with zero fillers or toxic ingredients.  But I also love the fact that these products work.  Caroline had a bit of eczema on both of her arms, so we tried the baby lotion on them.  Within 2 days the patches were completely healed and haven't been back since.  Hollerrr!

So, here's the deal for my giveaway.  All you have to do is place an order with me for any amount by 11pm EST tonight and you will be entered in a drawing for a $100 Arbonne voucher!

Ready to get yourself some Arbonne awesomeness??  Here's how:

1) E-mail me at catherineekenney@gmail.com
2) Don't want to pay retail prices?  I don't blame you!  I'll show you how to get a great deal.
3) Worried you might not like something?  Don't be!  We have a 45-day money-back guarantee on all our products.

That's it!  I can't wait for you to fall in love with these products.  I'll announce the winner on Monday!

Monday, June 10, 2013

a wanna-be stay at home mom

Curt and I have had a pretty good gig for the past three years.  He's been a student.  I've been a teacher. We've had lots of time in the summers to relax together and two weeks off at Christmas.  Of course there have been the late nights studying, trying to make a dorm apartment into a home, the time that I was working two jobs while pregnant, and oh yeah, that time when I was working two jobs with a new baby...eek!  But for the most part, we've really enjoyed this first season of life together.

Curt graduated last weekend and we are entering a new phase of life.  The one where Curt gets a job and our sweet baby is growing like a weed every day.  As we assess our new situation we realize that we want to have more choices:  to be able to spend more time investing in our daughter, to have me stay at home instead of work, and to be able to afford to give more to our church and people we know doing great things for God all over the world.  This desire was met with our reality and we realized that we really didn't have choices.  I have to work so we can pay our rent.  We have to put Caroline into daycare because we both have to work.  We have less time together as a family because Curt and I are both working.

About a month ago, I began exploring my options.  I decided to become an independent consultant with Arbonne and it has been a great experience so far.   Arbonne is a Swiss-formulated cosmetic, skincare, and heath & wellness company with the highest standards and botanically-based ingredients.  All of the products are vegan-certified and most are gluten-free as well.  I've used the products for a while and to say I love them would be an understatement.  Did you know that the average woman puts about 515 chemicals on her skin each day (think soaps, lotions, perfume, serums, hair products, deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, make-up, etc)?  Also, anything we put on our skin is absorbed into our bloodstream in 26 seconds (think about how a nicotine patch works...).  How about if you were to go look at the labels on your lotions, foundation, etc?  Do they list mineral oil as an ingredient?  Mineral oil is a petroleum derivative (as in, it comes from the stuff we fill our cars with).  It is considered toxic and is banned from ingredient lists on skincare and cosmetic products in most countries, except the US.  US companies use it because it is a cheap filler, even though they know it's toxic and contains carcinogenic properties.  Even the baby wash I was using on my daughter had this as a main ingredient.  Yikes.  All of Arbonne's products are formulated without mineral oil, animal products or by-products, they are dermatologist tested, hypo-allergenic, ph correct, and vegan friendly.  

So not only does this company give me the opportunity to work from home, it also provides us with healthier options for the products we put on and in our bodies every day.  Arbonne makes products we are all already using, they just provide a healthier alternative.  The company provides an amazing compensation plan and my hope is that, with some hard work, I can replace my teaching income in the next year and stay at home with Caroline.  

Stay tuned if you are looking for healthier products to use on your skin...or even a business that will give you more choices, let you stay at home with your kids, or just make some extra shopping money each month.   I'll be posting an "Arbonne edition" of the things I'm currently digging, complete with an awesome giveaway!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Curt's Graduation!

About a month ago, Curt graduated from seminary!  We have spent the last three years at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary while he has worked so hard to earn his Master of Divinity degree.  His family and family friends were able to come up for the big day and we had an awesome time celebrating all weekend.  We also got to celebrate Tom's 60th b-day, Susan's b-day, and Mother's Day. We are so thankful to so many of you who have supported us over the past three years and we are excited for what God has for us in these next steps.

Sooo what's next for us?  Curt has accepted a one-year pastoral internship position at our church, Citylife Presbyterian.  We are moving to the big city and I'm in the process of interviewing at some schools in the city (prayers appreciated!).  We LOVE visitors, so please let us know if you are ever in the Boston area!

Here are some pictures from our fun weekend (warning!  this post is extremely picture-heavy:)

 Taking a tour of campus

Caroline loves her Mimi 

Skyping with Grace and Andrew 


The three Carolines! 

Caroline and Caroline 

 Tom's 60th B-day celebration

 The whole gang at the Gloucester House

 All dressed up for Daddy's graduation

 Curt and his bud, Chris

Chris, Kirk, Curt, and Dr. Lints 

Curt, President Hollinger, and Chris 

Caleb and Happiness...our sweet Nigerian friends we met our first year here 

Celebratory lobster dinner!