Free for Haul Friday, Volume #455

Share your recent beauty purchases or rediscovered favorites in your stash (for those on low/no-buys!), chit chat about weekend plans, and learn a little more about each other!

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  • Haul: MAC x Terry Barber Palette, MAC x Nordstrom Lip Sets (x2), Anastasia Fall 2018
  • Weekend plans: Probably spend one morning taking photos/swatching new products, and then the other day will be processing and writing reviews… possibly entering a 1,000 or so dupes (I usually spend several hours entering dupes in a row).
  • What has been the best part of July for you?: My family visited! It was really good to see everyone, especially my grandmother (who lives in Florida).

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This week's mellan photo/video...

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Morning wiggles 🤗 he’s one of the most wiggly dogs I’ve ever met!

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Haul: I got some DC’d Kat Von D items at Marshalls. The Petal shade undereye powder and the duo liquid lipsticks… Should have waited for the grey set. lol

A Tonne of KVD and UD items landed in the Marshalls stores here in Ontario.

Also got my first new phone in like 5 year from an LG Rumor to Apple X. lol

Weekend plans: more resumes…

What has been the best part of July for you?: Not much….. T_T

Haul: Oh girl I went nuts with the Wet n Wild. Got a couple more Photofocus foundations (I’m out of my perfect match and I felt like splurging a little), got a Megalength waterproof mascara, and the Zodiac loose powder highlight. I should have got another single of Brulee because I’ve hit pan on it yet again. I use that shadow literally every day to set my eye primer.

I also intend to sit over my computer like a hawk on my lunch break to get the new KKW Beauty palette. It looks gorgeous and although shades LOOK close to ones I have, they’re completely different and I do love the formula of her shadows. I might get another liquid concealer too, the formula is heavenly under my eyes.

Weekend plans: Typical Saturday plans. Do laundry, clean up the apartment, and I think I’ll be going to Albuquerque’s Lush location to stock up on a few staples.

What has been the best part of July for you?: We’ve had a nice cool July so far due to active monsoons? I don’t know. July has been a bit of a wash for me.

Licking his chops and wagging his tail…looks like he’s hinting at something!

A gigantic monster bottle of Kiehl’s Creme de Corps, NARS Undressed Liquid Lip Set II, and a sample jar of NARS Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation in Deauville (unfortunately, it curdles and oxidizes on my skin)

Diorshow Brow Styler in 004. I’ve been using ABH Brow Wiz for years, but this Dior pencil makes a much smoother, finer line, and the depth of color is more controllable. Very impressive! BUT… (uh oh, I feel a rant coming on…) It’s super annoying that it doesn’t have a cap, especially at $29. How does it not dry out without a cap? How does it stay clean and free of dust? The odd thing about the Brow Styler is that the spoolie side DOES have a cap. (I even examined it through a loupe to see if there was some kind of internal mechanism that closes when you swivel the pencil down. There isn’t.) Here’s the thing…if the spoolie were to break, the pencil would still be usable, but if the actual pencil itself got damaged, what good is the spoolie? Why does the spoolie get special protection while the poor pencil is left vulnerable to the elements? The pencil needs more protection than the spoolie! Seems like Logic 101. Dior, are you listening? Please add a cap for the already very fragile pencil. End of rant. Breathe out. (I do love this pencil so far, though.)

TV shopping to replace a very old one that finally gave out, visiting family, basic chores, relaxing…

July has been a bit rough for me, mostly having to do with office politics. I’ve bought a ridiculous amount of makeup this month because makeup shopping takes me away from real-world stress (until the bills come, that is). But I suppose the best part of July would have to be the volunteer work I’ve done, which is a good refuge from my job-related stress. My problems are nothing compared with the things other people suffer, and doing this kind of volunteer work puts it back into perspective for me.

I feel you on the office politics. I had a very rough week after discovering two coworkers have been making unkind comments about me. I do not talk badly about my coworkers and I was supportive and kind to both these women. I took it pretty hard.

Same here with the office politics this week. Nasty stuff going on and although I’m not directly involved, my projects and area was touched. It was an terrible week at work at a job I love. Ugh, sorry you and Tammy had the same.

Seraphine, I’ve had my Dior Brow Styler for years, and at first, I had the same concern -what’s up with no cap??? But it’s never dried out, and it sits in my bathroom, which gets a lot of wind/air from an open window. I agree, it’s a fantastic product, would buy again

Such a happy dude! Love these Mellan video clips😘

Haul: Went to Ulta in Tempe yesterday for the Ofra Glazed Donut highlighter, and also bought Skinfood Egg White Pore Mask and L’Oreal Shine Lipstick in Lacquered Strawberry (probably one of the prettiest pink lipsticks I’ve ever worn!). Also, NMR, I also hauled a super soft heathered lilac v-neck t-shirt at Old Navy in the MEN’S department! And a Nasa t-shirt in Target.

Weekend plans: Back to my usual routine this weekend, but I sure did enjoy last weekend in Tucson so much! Wonderfully informative and interesting convention.

My bad, I totally forgot to write what my response to “best part of July”!

Best part of July: That my daughter’s knee surgery went far better than anticipated! Less invasive than we were expecting, with far better healing going on than last time. And then that I did get to go to Tucson for my 3 day Convention with an interesting topic; “Be Courageous”. What courage is and isn’t. Not what I thought I knew before. Fear doesn’t mean a lack of courage, but doing what we are supposed to do while keeping our integrity and staying faithful in the face of fear IS.

That OFRA Glazed Donut was my favorite of those Christine reviewed. It reminds me of the white highlighter I love in the Dior Backstage palette.

Was Laquered Strawberry what you were wearing in your Instagram pics? I immediately took note of your beautiful lip color and meant to ask you what you were wearing.

I’m so happy your daughter’s surgery went well.

Courage: Staying true to your beliefs despite fear. Also, I always tell my clients that living takes more courage than dying. Living isn’t for the faint of heart.

Hi Tammy,
I fell in love with both of those products! Glazed Donut can be worn sheerer so that it just gives our med. – tan complexions a nice icy glow without giving off white stripes across the cheeks!

The lipstick I’m wearing in my IG pics from Tucson is my long loved tube of MAC Maria Moretti. It is my favorite true red lipstick. Wish MAC would make it permanent!

Thank you! Sabrina is able to walk a little bit already.

100% what you said about courage! Something about this year’s convention hit home. So did the one from 2 years ago.

Haul: Black Moon Cosmetics Eternal black metal lipstick. I think last week I mentioned my Saucebox order that should be arriving today.

Weekend Plans: Possibly doing a pub crawl tomorrow if the weather stays nice.

Best part of July: I hate July it’s the worst month for my chronic joint pain and headaches I just feel exhausted 24/7 for the whole month.

Haul – I just received Marc Jacobs Highliner in 44 Th(ink), Smashbox Photo finish under eye primer, & Lawless Woke up like this foundation. Hope these products work.

Weekend plans – beach, dinner, dancing

What has been the best part of July – Living here in So. Florida. Recently moved here, & love it.

Haul: Nothing… I’m waiting for a couple of things to hit stores over the next couple of weeks.

Plans: 80s concert tomorrow! Three of my all-time, absolute favorites are playing, two of which I’ve never had the chance to see live. I plan to crimp my hair, so I’ll likely start that process tonight, along with figuring out what to wear…

Best Part This July: The aforementioned concert!

The only m/u from Nordie’s was the Nars lip set, nude version. Like them. And I had BETTER not buy, bec. have been out of both jobs for a week with r/o viral syndrome, a/k/a ILI, Influenza like illness. I do not recommend it. I did haul the m/u pressing/repair kit from U, but this sick brings confusion with it, so I’ll have to remember where it is, before I can play with it. Want to fix a Joues Contrastes that I attempted to depot….and I though MAC was bad. W/E: probably continuing to lie around with the dogs, walk them when I can. Have an MD note til Mon. Not much endurance here; fall asleep while on the phone! No fun at all. July? Didn’t feel top drawer before this, but found a new doc at the Brigham who is both a rheumatologist and a Derm. That way, I was able to cancel the ? 8 year follow up with the old rheumatologist, and fire the derm who OD’d me on too large a dose of gabapentin and other infractions. Did manage to have vet home visits, even though I couldn’t let her in the house for part 2! What a disaster area one person can create when out of commission for five to seven days.

Haul: Sigma brushes, skincare from Peach & Lily
Weekend Plans: spending time with my family, working out, and running my routine for my performances in August
Best Part of July: my vacation, I got to sleep in, do some self-care, then enjoy some of the best pole performances I’ve ever seen in my entire life which gave me so much inspiration.


After a year of struggling with three different glycolic acid formulations from my dermatologist’s office, I finally decided I was done. I think maybe I was sensitive to the ammonium hydroxide, which was the first ingredient in stuff from the derm. I decided to go with Pixi Glow Tonic after doing some research. After the burning of previous glycolic, I was so delighted by the Pixi. No burning or itching at all. It is so comfortable that it seems like it’s not even an acid at all.

While I was there I grabbed a Pixi Fairy Light glitter in Sun Ray. I really should have stopped with the Pixi Glow: I have quite a few glitters at home and surely did not need another one, lol. But it looks like sunshine! I needed a little sunshine in my life☀️.

Three weeks ago I started using acids and retinol body lotions. For daytime I use Alpha Revitalzing Body Lotion and the retinol body cream sold at Sam’s club. I’ve always wanted to use anti-aging body care formulas but assumed they were out of my price range.They actually aren’t any more expensive than regular lotions.

Also three weeks ago I started using Australian Gold Botanical SPF Tinted Face Lotion. I have combination skin and am 52. I was going to tell you all how much I love this sunscreen and it works better as a primer for me than any actual primer I’ve ever used. However, I had to stop several items in my routine due to an outbreak of acne, and I’m not sure which of the newer items I was using was exacerbating my condition.

For reference, I stopped biotin supplements, Drunk Elephant Marula Oil, Hydra B and Protini, and sunscreen. I have not had a new pimple since stopping those products one week ago, and the 9 blemishes I had last Saturday are mostly gone. I will start to add products back very gradually, but it’s going to take a couple
months to do this. In the meantime, if you are a combo girl whose skin tolerates mineral sunscreens, check out the Australian Gold Tinted to use as both a sunscreen and primer for foundation.

I purchased the Dior Backstage foundation in 3W. I’ve only used it two days so I have impressions only at this point. Of the three new foundations I have been playing with this spring and summer, this one comes in third place. Cover FX Power Play takes first place. It’s just whatever at first but gets pretty as the day wears on, has a great deal of coverage with a weightless feel, and does a great job of blurring my prominent pores. The Fenty is a bit too matte and I have to mix two shades to get a match, and though it’s pretty it’s still not as pretty as Lancome’s Teint Idole. The Dior has good coverage, and is weightless, skin-like, and easy to apply. I just don’t feel like it makes my skin
beautiful. I think I like a more satin finish, despite having combination skin. I’m older and matte isn’t always my best look.

Weekend plans: Gym, cooking, spending time with family. My baby visited an air force recruiter today and I want to spend all the time I can with him, just in case they take him away. We will do our usual Sunday cooking day and I will try to tuck as much of it into my memory as I can. We are making Asian Pork, Asian salad, and chicken with mushrooms.

Also this weekend we will finish our second season of Broadchurch. I LOVE this show!

July: July has been an emotionally difficult month. I’ve had some career issues and discovered two coworkers I used to work with made unkind comments about me. So in these times I am thankful for the friends who really know me and have been there for me, my husband, and my adult children. Supportive people truly are shelter from the storm.

I had the two WORST cystic pimples of my adult life while I was trying out Drunk Elephant’s C-Firma and Lala Retro whipped moisturizer. Possibly a coincidence but those were the only new things in my routine, and it hasn’t been a problem since. Has made me very leery of Drunk Elephant, although I did get a sample of their D – Bronzi to try. Fingers crossed…

Sorry to hear you’re dealing with unkind coworkers, Tammy. You seem like a genuinely good person.

Lindsey, I have been on the C-Firma since last fall. The acne started in April so I don’t think it’s the C. I know it is hormonal (I am in menopause) but products definitely play a role in making it better or worse. I used Lala during the winter but stopped in the spring because it was just too much moisture once winter was gone. I was also consistently using B Hydra for 6 months, so that’s probably not the issue. Marula oil is supposed to be good for acne but I definitely had a radical increase in blemishes when I added it to my routine. I added the sunscreen at the same time, so it’s likely one of those two. I also changed my hair vitamins.

I will add everything back in slowly and see if I can figure it out. I love DE so I’m hoping to resume my products.

I also got the D Bronzi sample and am looking forward to trying it.

Broadchurch is SOOOO good! If you haven’t watched Shetland, Hinterland or Happy Valley and feel you need to carry on with British crime dramas those are very good. Hubs and I have had a spree of these.

What in the world is with this week and office politics. Count me in too. It was an awful, awful backstabbing week. My position allows me to weather the storm, but this new VP is throwing his weight around, scaring people, and is completely passive aggressive. Terrible at work, and I normally adore my job. Glad I’m going away for a bit.

I’m sorry to hear about your co-workers talking behind your back. How unprofessional and just mean. Can you talk to a supervisor about it?

I wouldn’t talk to a supervisor for two reasons: 1) I no longer work on that unit and 2) this isn’t the type of situation a supervisor would need to address. They simply decided my life is “too perfect” and therefore they do not want to be around me. It is painful for me, as I went out of my way to be supportive towards both of them and my life is not at all perfect (and they know it too). I do not have a big ego, but I think it bothers many women in this community when a woman takes care in her appearance. I exercise, eat healthy, wear makeup, and dress in professional clothes. I know being intelligent, having a master’s degree, and having a strong work ethic does not endear me to others either. Perfectly natural female behavior in urban areas, but not embraced in this central Illinois town. It appears that if a woman tries to be her best, the judgement is that she thinks she is better than everyone else. I know this isn’t the case, I struggle with self-esteem just like most. But at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if you are a good person, people can choose to reject you for whatever reasons they desire. It deeply saddened me.

I need only one drop of the DE marula oil for my face and one drop for my neck and chest plus I leave it off my nose. When I used more, I broke out. I have used biotin for a number of years without breaking out. I am not familiar with the other DE products. I think I get similar actives from the Timeless serums I use.

Tammy, sorry to hear about the issues with co-workers. Work is difficult enough without added political issues.
I purchased the Australian Gold Sunscreen in the tinted version about a year ago and I loved it under my makeup except it was just a little too drying for my dry skin. I gave it to my daughter and she uses it with her oily skin and really loves it. I picked up the un-tinted and really love it. Luckily, no acne for me. I am really lucky that I don’t have difficult skin and pretty much everything I throw at it works. I use Good Genes twice a day, DE products twice a day and can even throw Pixi Glow Tonic in and no problem. I like the Pixi but surprisingly, it is the fragrance that keeps me from using it more. It has white flower in it and I just hate that scent. My Guerlain BB cream went missing and they are sending me another one so haven’t had a chance to try it yet.
Hope things will be better for you at work.

DE Good Genes twice a day? Aack! I use it once a week and sometimes it still makes my skin freak, lol. But again, my skin has become super irritated with the past year of acids containing ammonium hydroxide. Maybe after a time of not using those, my skin will become tougher.

I know prescription strength Retin A also sensitizes my skin, so there’s that too.

I do love Good Genes. It makes my skin shine as if I put Vaseline all over my face. Prettiest skin of the week!

I recently started my first real job, and now that things have settled down, I went a little crazy with beautylish.

Mkitco brush set, which is very good quality. The brushes have nice, solid handles and the natural hair brushes are as soft as the synthetic. I can’t say how it will handle being washed, but so far I like them.

Kevyn Aucoin The Sculpting Powder in Medium and Deep, and The Sensual Skin Enhancer in SX01. I’ve been wanting to try out Miss Fame’s complexion products for ages and tonight it’s finally going to happen.

Viseart Neutral Mattes and Cool Mattes 2. I have Cool Matte 1, and I’m happy to say that in person the palettes are quite different. CM1 is dry and muted, whereas SM2 is much smoother and more saturated. I can verify that the lavender in the top right corner is pretty poor though. Neutral Mattes is exactly what I expected: a lot of warmish neutrals.

I also picked up refills of my The Ordinary skincare products and RCMA No Color Powder.

Haul: ABH Norvina Palette, MUG Purple Passion Mystery Box (marked down from $50 to $20), and Belladonna’s Cupboard Baphomet: Electrified UV reactive pressed pigment palette. All Cosmetics Wholesale is shutting down and the entire site is 40% off, so I picked up UD e/s single in Kush and a back-up UD x Gwen Stefani Eyeshadow Palette (now I can travel with one w/o worrying about it).

Weekend plans: Nothing special

What has been the best part of July for you?: That my son is doing well in his Youth Transition Program. He’s working full days now and adjusting to a earlier morning routine very well.

Haul: Nothing yet, though I’m really needing to replace some skincare items and I really want some of those NARS glosses. I also need to get some household stuff.

Weekend: I caught a wicked flu at the ER for a an allergic reaction so I’m just getting better now. I’d like to swim and maybe get out of the hose for some window shopping.

The best part of July: I had people over for the holiday and my husbands birthday, so I guess that was the best part. The best part for me was having a really long cuddle session with my pup with no tech. A few nice sunsets too.

Haul: Nars Undressed II pink lip set, Tatcha Rice Polish Classic and a Littles Set from Drunk Elephant, which I haven’t played with yet.

Weekend plans: Dinner out tonight with my mum and sisters-in-law, so I’m getting frocked up and putting on my highest heels and then Sunday will just be tidying and planning for our upcoming week’s holiday at the beach.

Best part of July: I had a horrible month – my grandma died, my dad got diagnosed with cancer and broke up with his partner of 3 years (I don’t know if those 2 things are related yet, though I have my suspicions…), I got called up for jury duty and my mum went on a third round of antibiotics for a chronic chest infection. Oh, I got a 5% payrise, that was good. And my husband has been bloody wonderful too 🙂

Thanks Rachel R. My mum is doing much better – she babysits her grandkids on a regular basis and she seems to pick up all their daycare germs, but it hits her harder and she suffers more than the kiddies do!

Thanks for the hugs!

Oh CeeBee, you have had a terrible month – you’ll be glad to see the back of it.
I am sad to hear about your grandma, had she been ill for a long time?
And I think your suspicions regarding your dad’s cancer diagnosis and break up are pretty accurate. It must have been a huge shock for him, quite life changing too.
I hope your mum’s chest infection clears up, they can be really nasty and make you feel awful.
Thank goodness your husband has been a great support.
Cross fingers that August is a better one for you.

Oh CeeBee, so sorry to hear about your Grandma and your Dad. You have had a terrible July. I will keep your Dad in my prayers.
Regarding the Drunk Elephant Littles. I purchased the set, as my introduction to the brand, a few months ago and have really enjoyed it. I have pretty easy skin so not much phases it. I did want to say that I purchased after watching a YT video where the creator mentioned that the amount in the set is enough for one month. When I looked at them I thought no way, these won’t last a week, little own a month. Then when I watched another video they said that the Drunk Elephant site said to put one pump of each of the products on the back of your hand or on a palette, mix and apply to face and that way they would last for a month. That is what I did and it actually lasted for almost 5 weeks and some of the products I used twice a day. My routine was one pump Glycolic (pink top), one pump Marula Oil (greenish top) and one pump blue top at bedtime and in the morning I substituted the Vit C in the orange top in place of the pink top. I didn’t care for the eye cream, the sunscreen or the LaLa but I think I might like the Lala more in the winter time. I have since purchased the full size of everything and got the Protini and the C-Tango eye cream. I love the packaging for DE products and only wish that the little containers could be filled from the full size for trips.
Also, don’t know if you follow Arna Alayne on YT, she is from Australia but she did a whole video on Drunk Elephant as she met the founder and went over each product. Worth a watch if you are interested.
Hope things go better for you.

So sorry to hear that your grandma passed away. My spouse’s grandma is in failing health and we feel time with her is short. I”m sorry to hear that your father was diagnosed with cancer. I hope the prognosis is good and that the treatments are effective.

Thanks everyone for the good wishes!

My mum is definitely doing better, my dad is a tough old nut and his cancer should be treatable, so fingers crossed for his specialist appointment next week. My grandmother was nearly 98 (2 days short of her birthday) and was a great, great grandmother, so she had a good, long life and was very much loved.

Love the community support here, you guys are a great! 😀

CeeBee, I am sorry I was unable to post over the weekend, but wanted to acknowledge your losses. I am saddened by all, and hope August is a better month for you.

Haul: Estée Lauder lipstick in vin noir and Kevyn Aucoin eye gloss in diamond.

Weekend plans: Relax hopefully put a run in or a lap in the pool, the last time I worked out was the day I went into labor for 24 hrs exactly 4months and 1 day ago!

What has been the best part of July for you?: having my baby baptized last Sunday and wearing heels for the first time since January! I’m very happy about it, cause I caught the flu at work took a week to recover and fell and rolled my ankle a week after! Needless to say, I was on a boot the whole 3rd trimester of my pregnancy.

Christine, I’m glad you were able to spend time with your family. You work so hard and I don’t even know how you keep your productivity so high and so consistently.

Thanks to Tammy I got Guerlain’s Lingerie de Peau BB Cream. I like it quite a lot. I think it makes Tammy more glowy than me (saw it on IG and loved the look 🙂 ), but it’s lovely and a keeper.

I also got two samples of items I want to try before I plunk down the cash — Tom Ford’s Illuminating Primer and MAC Skin Refine Zone (which I have never used).

I have a skin care haul from Niod coming up to replace some near empties, but I think that can wait until after vacation.

Packing for Paris! We leave Monday and it’s not a moment too soon. I’ll get in some swims and spend as much time with the dogs as I can. I do miss them when we’re away.

Too much work travel. Too much office politics, especially this week — awful. An engagement BBQ for my son and his fiance and this Paris trip makes July a win, but it takes that to put this month in the win column (and I adore my job). But I do remind myself that everyone in my family, including me, is healthy, doing well, and it’s time to stop sweating the small stuff.

Linda, please let me know what you think of the Tom Ford illuminating primer? I am curious and like anything glowy or illuminating. I also picked up the Guerlain BB cream because of Tammy but my shipment went lost in the mail so waiting for replacement to come. Didn’t it make her skin just glow!! I love the glowy look!!

Deb, I think you have the products I use to get my glow. I mix one pump of DE’s C-Firma, one pump of B-Hydra, and 3 drops of Marula oil in my palm, and this is the base for my look. I usually mix a few drops of Noni Glow Oil in with the Guerlain BB to sheer it out (it has a lot of coverage for me, I prefer a little less coverage) and Noni Glow Oil definitely intensifies the glow. In addition, I do not set with regular face powder. Only Meteorites or a glowy Hourglass powder.

My skin is combination so I am prone to shine by midday. This combination gets glowier as the day goes on, and I almost didn’t post the Instagram pic because I was a little embarrassed by my shiny face, lol.

I am so glad you love the Guerlain BB! Burberry makes a love illumination liquid and I bet the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter would look stunning mixed in with the BB. I am going to get the Flawless Filter when the weather cools down. In the fall and winter my skin becomes normal to dry, and I need a little help with illumination.

I am so excited about trying NIOD’s Multi Molecular Hyaluronic Complex. It will be my next Beautylish purchase. I am going to mix it with my C serum (I like to use hyaluronic acid to help my vitamin c to be easier to spread and I’ve read hyaluronic acid helps the C penetrate the skin better).

Paris on Monday? I can’t wait to see your Instagram photos! I especially love your photos of Paris women. Will you go to Atelier? This year I have fallen hard for Vetiver Fatale and Vanille Insensee.

Beautiful video of Mellon – he must be happy as his tail wiggles a lot.

Haul – Sukin, an Australian skincare brand, has just released a new range dedicated to ‘mature skin’, so I purchased the serum and the night cream to see how it goes.

Weekend plans: Watching the Tour De France – which relays to us of a late evening, so I am sleeping in of a morning. The final time trial will be on tonight (Saturday).
Saturday – a drive up into the hills, meeting the family for lunch in hotel.
Sunday – is pretty open at the moment.

Best part of July – beautifully sunny, but chilly days – Melbourne has the best winter weather I think.

Haul: WnW ColorIcon Blush in Pearlescent Pink. It seems to be a dupe for Benefit Galifornia, which I won’t buy because Benefit is not cruelty free. I have been on a low-buy lately. I went to Ulta this week and didn’t buy anything except some cleansing wipes and dry shampoo for my friend below. Nothing really tempted me.

Weekend plans: the usual chores plus visiting a friend laid up with a broken pelvis from a fall she took visiting NYC from Phoenix last weekend. She won’t be able to return home until the doctors are satisfied with her ability to get around on crutches.

Best part of July: I love summer so the best thing about July for me is that it comes every year.

Haul: My daughter’s birthday is on Wednesday so we are in Spokane today to pick up her best friend from high school so we went to Sephora and Ulta and my no-buy is no longer a thing!! I picked up a Farmacy tester kit mostly to try the melt away balm makeup remover. I love my Tatcha Camelia Cleansing Oil but no matter how I pack it it leaks and it is so frustrating. I also think that the balm can be treated as a solid for the 3:1:1 TSA rules. I picked up the Lavanille Natural Deodorant, Dior Flash Luminizer’s in shades 01 and 02, Becca Under Eye Primer to fight signs of fatigue, Bite French Press Lip Gloss in shade Dirty Chai and Stila Vibrant Eye Shadow Duo in Amethyst and Garnet. From FudeJapan I picked up the RMS Finishing Powder, Flarosso Highlighter, Paul and Joe lipsticks x 2 and an eye shadow duo. I also picked up two more packages of Banana Kit Kats, Matcha Kit Kats and one of the Strawberry Shortcake Kit Kats. From Ebay I ordered the Guerlain Meteorites Perfume in the old formula. The new “just released” about 6 weeks ago scent isn’t the same and I didn’t care for it. The old scent is hard to find and of course pricey but found it on Ebay and picked up the last bottle although another seller has one for almost double. I will see if it is still available when I get back from Europe and might pick it up for down the road.

I am looking for a good refillable atomizer to take a smaller amount of scent on my trip so does anyone know of a good atomizer that I can be sure won’t leak my expensive perfume into my luggage?

Weekend Plans: We are having High Tea in Spokane on Saturday and brunch at the Davenport Hotel for my daughter’s birthday and then headed to Glacier National Park for one day as her best friend has never been and then back to my place for a couple of days before returning her friend to the airport.

How is my July? It has been pretty busy. A lot going on and in preparation for being gone for 5 weeks. Also had another issue with steroids in my back injections, (epidural), so not going to take any more of those. I refuse to have surgery and won’t take narcotics for pain so not much else they can do for me which is acceptable. It is my own decision not to try these other two options. I am a Registered Nurse and I know that narcotics for chronic pain issues is a slippery slope that I don’t want to go down so will manage with my anti-inflammatory medications. Also, unless I am going to be w/c bound I won’t have surgery. Anyway, following making that decision have decided to take early retirement, I am 64 and would need to work 1.5 years to get Social Security at full amount but difference between now and then is less than $100 so I have decided to go ahead. Also, have a small settlement coming from Workman’s Comp so that should all be settled within the next couple of days. Other than that July has been lovely here. We haven’t had any days over 95 this summer yet and a breeze everyday off the river so can’t complain.

Wow! Retirement. I am sorry about the reasons for your retirement but I am guessing some part of you is probably looking forward to your time being your own. I am the same as you, don’t even want to take medicine for a headache, and I definitely am not interested in any type of narcotics. I have been prescribed narcotics for surgeries, but refused to take them. I’m also very resistant to using antibiotics, much to the frustration of my oral surgeon. I won’t take benzos either, I just don’t need that kind of trouble in my life.

So your vacation can be your retirement celebration? That much better!

LOL on the low-buy. If you love it and can afford it, enjoy it.

Mellan is such a wiggly boy! I have a “rolly” cat who steamrolls my feet with his belly whenever he can.

Haul: Nothing because we are moving tomorrow so no spendy-spendy for a while aside from like, shower curtains.

Weekend plans: Moving!

What has been the best part of July for you?: It’s actually been a really crap month as almost everything that could go wrong did go wrong but one thing that made it survivable was hiring packers for the first time ever before the move tomorrow. I’m dealing with health stuff so I couldn’t pack much at all, my dad threw out his shoulder on his only full arm (his left one ends at the elbow, no biggie just was born that way) and got a hospital-induced-infection before the first week of the month was out so he was also out for the count, and my mom switched jobs but overlapped them for the month of July so she had no time or energy to pack, and we would not have gotten by without it. It took three lovely, polite guys only three hours to pack our whole place up very well, and they’re the same ones that will be moving us tomorrow so there were things they didn’t even unpack out of some smaller drawers and such like cloth napkins as it won’t be an issue moving them, and it was such a load off. It wasn’t cheap ($525 which included a generous tip- I say not to brag but for if anyone ever finds themselves in similar desperate states) but my mom’s overlapping jobs more than made up for it and we simply couldn’t have gotten it done ourselves and don’t know anyone that could have helped in the area. Now we just have to survive the actual move tomorrow!

I’m hoping the BEST part of the month will be on the 31st, when I undergo my scalene block (with Botox no less haha) for my chronic pain. I very much hope I am in the category of people who finds a very high percentage of pain relief that lasts for a really long time so fingers crossed!

Haul: Still no purchases, but my mom’s side of the family had a party for the family’s July birthday people (I’m not one of them) and my aunt and cousin gave me a bunch of makeup and hair care samples.
Weekend plans: I worked all day today, and it was a long day. SVU marathon tomorrow, laundry Sunday.
What has been the best part of July for you?: The weather hasn’t been too oppressively hot.

Christine, I don’t know what I look forward to more in Mellan videos: seeing what he’s up to or listening to catch a hint of your voice!

Haul: Arrived: Sonia G Worker 1 brush and Smith 256 brush from Beautylish; and Charlotte Tilbury Pink Lip Set from Nordstrom Sale.

Boston Store Liquidation & CC0 (approx 50% off): Bobbi Brown Luxe Eyeshadows in Moonstone, Melting Point, and Serpentine; Longwear Cream Shadow Stick in Taupe, Cream Glow Highlighter in Pink Opal, Tawny Glow Highlighter, Extra Balm Rinse, 6-Pan Refillable Palette, Cream Shadow Brush, and Touch Up Brush; Lancome Teint Idole Foundation Stick.

Weekend Plans: Visiting with a friend who injured her leg, and starting a project to restore wood that is marred around the apartment.

Best Part of July: Spending time at home with my mom, my mother-in-law, and friends. I love reconnecting with favourite places, people, and routines. We’ve had 2 longtime neighbours pass away recently, so I hold onto moments at home a bit more tightly these days (and I had a pretty firm grasp on them before).

My heart is with those affected by the devastating wildfires in CA and all who are working to contain them, to keep residents safe, to support those who have been evacuated and those who have lost everything.

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