Friday Finds & Check-ins, Volume #578

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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Share your own answers in the comments!

  • Recent Purchases/Rediscoveries: Milani Lipsticks (last weekend, I think, but before Salt New York tints, which I’m hoping to dive into this weekend.
  • Weekend plans: A pipe burst at my mother-in-law’s house, which has caused a fair amount of damage, so most of yesterday (and I’m anticipating a good chunk of today) is helping her deal with that situation. I’m hoping we’ll have more of the details ironed out by end of today, and then my brain can turn to mush on Saturday for an hour or two before taking photos/swatches.
  • What was the last recipe you tried?: Chrissy Teigen’s Armadillo bread, which is ooey-gooey, garlicky cheesy bread goodness. 10/10.

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This week's mellan photo/video...

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Mellan looks broken! LOL 🤣

Purchases/rediscoveries: Purchased Youth To The People eye cream because Tarababyz sang its praises most highly! Also; PML Divinyl Nude Venus, MAC Heart Goes Boom and Set Me Off Lipglass. All 4 on EXCELLENT sales.

Weekend Plans: Remicade infusion today, then ER for the severe, agonizing pain in my hip that my evil ex pummeled during va bad beating back when I was 22. Funny thing, it was fine until 5-6 years ago. Today I can hardly walk. Tramadol is not helping, nor heating pad and Tiger Balm. This is really horrible. And unforgivable.

Last recipe I followed: months ago when I could still stand up long enough, I made a bundt sour cream pound cake, gluten free, from literal scratch. It was heavenly! I so want to bake again soon. It’s something I truly enjoy doing, and I have yet to make a “fail”.

Thanks AJ! I’m telling you, this past month or so has very nearly killed me, and nobody around me has any idea. I got talked out of going to our traditional ER on Friday by the infusion nurses due to a minimum 6 hour wait and covid risk. Instead, I’ll go to a freestanding urgent care ER that we have down the road on Monday if it’s still so tender.

Yikes! 6 hours would be a long time to wait in an uncomfortable chair with hip pain. I hope urgent care can hook you up. That’s where I end up going for most things (thank goodness I haven’t had any true emergencies!).

Stephanie, please see answer to AJ above. Yeah, I’m about to look into legal recourse against him. Hopefully the statute of limitations won’t apply since this is a recently occurring side effect of the abuse suffered.

I love Tara! Also have been wanting to try that eye cream, please let me know how it works for you? Hope you feel so much better soon.

I hope your Remicade infusion today does the trick and I hope that the ER can help you with your hip. You may need to see a physio about that. It’s horrific that you suffered such shocking abuse by your ex and no wonder you fled to Arizona. People like him have a lot to answer for and I hope some Karma comes to him in his lifetime. You really have been in the wars lately Nancy and I sincerely hope that your medical and emotional woes of late come to an end.

Yes to all you sad, Genevieve! You should have heard me when even the heating pad, Tiger Balm and Tramadol were only barely helping. Oh boy! Things left my lips about my ex that never ought to have. Hopefully, my upstairs neighbors didn’t hear my turning the air electric BLUE!

Plumbing issues are the worst. I hope the damage isn’t too hard or expensive to repair. I had to replace a floor from flooding from a pipe. As for Mellan, do dogs have shoulders? Apparently cats do not and that’s why they can squeeze under tiny spaces.

Recent Purchases/Rediscoveries: Still no new purchases. I went into a Sephora store to see if they had the Briogio birthday gift (sold out) and left immediately. I have been rotating through my eye palettes but I can’t say I have rediscovered anything I had forgotten about.

Weekend plans: Nothing special. The weather continues to be unusually mild so I will try to get outside. At some point I will go to midtown to see the store windows and the Rockefeller Center tree but I should probably wait for midweek to do that.

What was the last recipe you tried?: A spicy orange stir fry sauce—orange juice, orange peel, soy sauce, chili paste, sugar and corn starch. I used it to reheat leftovers. It worked really well.

Fun fact! I did not know that. When I google, Dr. Google tells me that dogs have “disconnected shoulder bones,” LOL!

The damage isn’t total loss for the whole house or floor, but it looks like it’s significant enough (up to two bathroom replacements, partial or full, plus replacing of a mega pipe and remediation).

I also tried to get the Briogeo set as my birthday gift back in September, but I gave up after having to wait in line just in one Sephora store. And I decided that in person shopping is just not in my near future plans for beauty products. 😅 I just ended up making an online order to get the Hourglass set.
And obviously I just don’t know why I was stubborn to get the Briogeo set, given that their products never worked for me. I just have to admit at some point that no matter how much I want to like Briogeo and Olaplex, my hair simply doesn’t.

Christine, I’m sorry to hear about your MIL’s house situation! Water damage is such a huge pain to deal with. I hope nothing irreplaceable was ruined.

Purchases/discoveries: Nothing! It was hard to resist the $12 Pat McGrath lipsticks, but I almost never wear lipstick these days!

Weekend plans: Nothing really special this weekend. Gotta go pick up our kits for our next online cocktail club events tonight, and get some takeout while we’re out. Might have an online game night with some friends. Mostly just staying home, though.

Most recent recipe I tried: I made “Green Ghost” cocktails. I, uhm, might have been spacing out and might have accidentally poured 2x as much Chartreuse as I needed, but it was still delicious so I’m not mad about it.

Cooking-wise, Chris baked some brown butter bourbon snickerdoodle cookies and they were amazing! It was just a random recipe that came across my feed and I showed it to Chris and they were like “Oh, we already have everything we need for those” and baked them up that afternoon 🙂

It’s really good! Just gin, green chartreuse, and lime juice. I found it on Steve the Bartender’s YouTube channel. If you like chartreuse, he seems to do a lot of cocktails with it 🙂

Recent Purchases/Rediscoveries: Purchased a Kiko blush, and rediscovered Becca Tigerlily blush. I always love a good blush, so I am pleased about both of these.

Weekend plans: Work, decorating the tree/holiday movies, finishing the book I am reading. Nothing too strenuous or exciting. My husband starts a new job with a schedule that will mean I won’t see him nearly as much next week, so we are gonna be trying to spend a bunch of time together.

What was the last recipe you tried?: This: https://www.vegetarianventures.com/walnut-ricotta-lemon-pasta/ I added some spinach and upped the garlic the second time I made it and it was a lot better. It is a nice, refreshing, but still filling meal and my picky hubs liked it too.

I hope your husban likes his new job Stephanie – always a stressful event I think, with new routines, protocols and people to meet.
The walnut ricotta pasta sounds delicious, but my picky husband doesn’t like ricotta (or chicken, lamb, pork etc), but I have sent the recipe along to my daughter in law.

Recent Purchases: The Sweet & Sticky (Cinnamon Roll) palette from Give Me Glow Cosmetics, and a few singles from Sydney Grace.

Rediscoveries: My Hourglass Ambient Lighting Ghost Unlocked palette. I paid good money for it, and I really need to use it more, and I did a lot the last couple of weeks.

Weekend plans: We’re quarantined again. My son got potentially exposed at daycare. It was only for an hour and he was wearing a mask, so I’m sure it’s okay, but it’s a wait and see sort of a situation. My father in law passed away last weekend and this was supposed to be his funeral weekend, but now we can’t even attend. I’m just…. so over how horrible this year has been and I want to crawl in a cave and sleep for the rest of the year. I can’t take much more.

What was the last recipe you tried?: I truly don’t remember, lol.

If you find that cave, I would be a socially distant neighbor! Here is hoping you and your family are in good health and many condolences for your loss. I surely hope 2021 has a brighter future for your family!

I am so sorry to read about your father in law’s passing and I pass on my condolences to you and your family. Your husband must be devasted and grieving. What an awful year it is turning out to be. I hope the quarantine measures really work for your community and that your covid levels come right down. It took 3 -4 months of hard lockdown for us.
It’s quite painful that you cannot even attend his funeral too. Best wishes Celesta and take care.

Celesta, we buried my beloved mother in law a week ago today and so few people were allowed to attend so not only were her last months of life really crummy (her own decline but also being isolated from family – her retirement complex has been on heavy lockdown since March and, knock wood, they’ve not had a single case among their residents, all of whom are vulnerable) but she couldn’t even have the type of funeral she really deserved. So I can really sympathize. But, you know what helps me – thinking of all those parents in large cities in the UK who had to have their children evacuated to lord knows where (not all were treated well at all) to get them out of the cities that were bombing targets. I think of that and realize that here, we still have our children with us, we don’t have food rationing, nightly air raids, etc. It’s a quite different situation but when I start feeling sorry for my situation (my kids are adults but aren’t able to travel home for the holidays), it really helps to give me some perspective. I hope your son is fine and that everything works out okay. These are such trying times.

I am sorry to read here about your mother in law’s passing Mariella. I know she had been frail for quite awhile now and it must have been quite distressing for her not to receive visitors due to the pandemic. It would have been hard for your husband and the rest of her family to not have the gathering at her funeral to honour her life. My thoughts are with you.

Genvieve, the last 2 years have been a heartbreaking decline for her and watching it has been so difficult. We didn’t think she would live til LAST Christmas. But these last months have been beyond sad – she’d lost everything – her eyesight, much cognitive function and even her dignity (having accidents and she was aware enough to be distressed by it). We were lucky in that we were able to have her here almost every Friday evening and I would make some of her favourite (and easy to chew and digest) dinners and then we’d have ice cream. And I made sure my husband phoned her every other day (sadly, some of her other children couldn’t seem to find the time or “found it too sad to hear mom like this” and, of course, they’re now regretting it). But I want to thank you for your kind words. We’re looking forward to the time when the virus is under control or eradicated and we can have a celebration like she deserved.

My condolences to you, Celesta. I was just talking with some friends about how we all wish we could sleep away the rest of this year. When my grandfather passed in September we couldn’t really do much to honor him given the restrictions. Sending you love and don’t forget to take time for yourself

I’m so sorry to hear that your father-in-law passed away. Sending condolences to your families at this extremely difficult time.

I’m with you re: the cave!

Thank you everyone for your caring comments. November was the most heartbreaking dumpster fire of a month. We are hanging in there, though.

Recent Purchases and Rediscoveries: Purchases: UD Stray Dog (for 7.99; it sells for something like $26 here in Canada so a real bargain and it’s a shade I’ve wanted for yonks), MAC Sweet Heat Extra Dimension shadow I love the ED shadows and wish there were more shades) and Dior Airflash Radiance primer/setting spray (it is fabulous). While I was at Winners (where I got Stray Dog) I saw they have some Kevyn Aucoin blushes and I checked out Christine’s review and some others and I’m heading back tomorrow to get Rose Cliff. REDISCOVERIES: Kat Von D Monarch palette. I’d put it aside for ages and had forgotten how nice the quality of the shadows is. I was surprised to see that KVD is no longer being carried at Sephora.

Weekend plans: I have a session with my trainer tomorrow (not quite as rewarding or enjoyable with the new restrictions) and I want to go back to Winners for the blush I mentioned above but other than that and maybe making some mini cheesecakes and some spicy sausage chili, I want to do blissful NOTHING.

Last thing I cooked: Either Balsamic Chicken (it was very good) or Spicy Sausage and Black Bean Chili (also very good and surprisingly spicy; I loved it and that’s why I want to make another batch this weekend)

I love the Monarch palette, too! It’s been my go-to neutral palette for years.

I still see KVD under the new name (KVD Vegan Beauty) on the Sephora website. Did you mean that it’s not currently in the stores? That wouldn’t surprise me, I bet they pulled it as part of this really underbaked rebrand (so many of the images on the website still have the old brand name!). Or is it not available on the Sephora Canada website?

You’re right – her products are still showing on the Sephora Canada site – I hadn’t even considered that she’d be listed under a “new” name. I’m not sure if her products are available in-store since, like a lot of people, I’d decided not to purchase from her brand any longer.

She’s not associated with the brand anymore — hence the name change. I too had decided not to purchase after some of her statements and behavior, and I thought maybe I would give the brand another chance now that she’s out, but I honestly haven’t seen them release anything new that I’m excited about!

Arena, I think the balsamic chicken recipe came from an All Recipes magazine, so it would be available on the All Recipes site (I think) but the spicy sausage chili is from an old Canadian Living’s “Best of” series – an actual book, so no link. I could post the recipe if Christine has no objection but I don’t want to do it without her okay and she may not want this site veering off into a recipe exchange.

Arena, I posted a link to the chicken recipe just below Genevieve’s comment (but it didn’t show up as a clickable link; let’s see if it works this time)

https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/8665/braised-balsamic-chicken/

Nope. Anyway, that’s the URL or you can just google “all recipes braised balsamic chicken”. If Christine says it’s okay to post the full recipe for the chili, I’ll do that as well, though I will also try to see if it’s anywhere online.

I can see you wearing both the UD Stray Dog and using the Monarch palette – which is very much the kind of shades you like.
That Balsamic Chicken recipe sounds very nice indeed – is it tricky to make?
Good luck at Winners getting the blush you want, it sounds like a good place for sales.

Nope – it was easy. After all these years of cooking, cooking, cooking, I’m always looking for recipes that are easy and give good results. When I make it again, though, I think I’ll cut the breasts in half horizontally (basically butterflying them) so they don’t take as long to cook through and I’ll probably increase the sauce amounts somewhat.

Here’s a link to the recipe. When I made it, I used only 4 boneless breasts and, as I say, next time, I’ll split them horizontally to speed cooking:

https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/8665/braised-balsamic-chicken/

Just looked at the link Mariella – thank you so much. I am going to give this one a go – I am also always looking for easy recipes that turn out to be yummy. I have taken note of your suggestions re cutting the chicken breasts in half and double the sauce ingredients.

Recent Purchases: I made a Paula’s Choice order to redeem my VIP gift (the Moisture Boost toner); because I don’t really need anything soon, I only purchased the Retinol Body Treatment (yes, I love Retinol so much I even use it on my body) with that 30% off that was going on last week.

Rediscoveries: That stress causes me breakouts. 😅 And the power of Benzoyl Peroxide to keep things under control.

Weekend plans: Is this the week of things breaking? My toilet starting leaking and my Internet wiring seems to have some faults, so on Saturday I am basically waiting for maintenance to occur (hopefully not at the same time). I do hope on Sunday I will get a chance to go hiking.

What was the last recipe you tried?: I love trying new recipes, if I could, I would so it for every meal. Last night I tried a Farinata; I have done chickpeas flour based breads before, but this was the first time I let the batter sit for a whole day to hydrate. I could definitely feel how it enhanced the flavor and texture.

Oh Mellan, you don’t look comfortable but obviously you must be or you would move!! I just got back from spending a little over a week with my daughter. She doesn’t have TV, cell service, etc so it was very restful. I was completely shut down and really enjoyed the peace, except for her cat terrorizing me at night. She loves to attack my feet if I move them even a little. So sorry to hear about your MIL’s water problem. I worry about it when I am gone as it is so easy for pipes to freeze up here.
I got back to hear that if you are over 65 you shouldn’t enter any building where there are people without masks and that you should have your groceries and prescriptions delivered. That would be great except living in the great, vast outdoors of Montana, there is no delivery of anything. Also, if under 40 you should consider yourself exposed if you went anywhere for Thanksgiving. I not only did but did a little shopping while there and my daughter is still working two jobs, both of which involve dealing with the public. So, I guess I will have to wait and see what happens. Also, my Christmas plans may be changed. I had hoped to have it here at my house as my daughter will not be here next year. I cannot wait for 2020 to roll into the history books.

Haul: I purchased some nail polishes from an Etsy seller as stocking stuffers and I placed an order for a few more Clionadh shadows. I received my last order this past week and they are just gorgeous. I would be happy just looking at them. Again, I cannot say enough about their customer service. They were worried about my second order getting here in time and upgraded my shipping!! I don’t care if the shadows make my crepy eyelids look more wrinkled. The shades are worth it!! I also picked up Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanille in the small purse spray for my daughter. She has the bottle but we had talked about wishing you could carry it with you so that is for her stocking also.

Weekend plans: I honestly don’t know! I may need to sleep to catch up. Not living around stores and then going to town, even one as small as Kalispell, means I can shop, eat at restaurants and just generally do things I can’t do at home. Of course, as stated above, I probably shouldn’t have. I was religious about wearing my mask and trying to socially distance. So, anyway, I am just going to rest and then I have to go to Missoula on Monday for an eye exam. I have been putting it off due to COVID but I need to get my driver’s license renewed and my vision has changed enough that I don’t know how that would impact my exam so I am going. They are very strict at the office and only allow the patient to enter and of course, mask wearing the whole time. The building is huge so I think it will be easy to socially distance.

Last recipe I cooked: I can’t remember. I make my own recipes a lot of the time. I will just start throwing stuff in a pan and then see how it turns out. I did make chicken enchiladas from a Pioneer Woman recipe, quite a long time ago. I wasn’t wowed.

I forgot to mention, my Pat McGrath lipstick, Elson, came broken. So, now I am trying to decide whether to attempt to fix it or go through the hassle of returning for a new one. I love the holiday packaging.

I hope you have a restful weekend Deborah and I am sure that both you and your daughter are fine – because you are taking the appropriate precautions. It’s very easy for restrictions to be in place for those over 65 – but making them work when you live in a rural area is a different matter. You still have to eat and get your prescriptions.
I hope the weather hasn’t been too cold for you either. Take care.

Thank you, Genevieve. I think we will be okay, also. It is intimidating when you see the, “don’t do this or that”, all the time on the news. Once the pandemic has calmed and we can leave the country again, we are thinking about another trip to Europe. We both loved it so much and while I was planning the trip, I assumed it would be my first and last opportunity to see Europe, but, I really want to go one more time. We would like to go further east and visit Prague, Vienna, etc. I have been having a war of words with a couple of “anti-maskers” on YouTube and it is basically my entertainment, LOL! My daughter cracks up at me because I love to write a good, substitute blistering, rebuttal. She has me send them to her so she can show her friends and she warns them that if they get a thick letter from me, they shouldn’t open it!! I find it relaxing, which is a bit weird, I know.

I am sorry to hear about the burst pipe at your MIL’s place Christine – what a mess these can cause. It’s not only the flooring that is damaged, but also the walls – where mould can set in due to the humidity and water content. I sincerely hope that your MIL can claim the damages on their house insurance. How distressing for them and it’s a lot of work for everyone concerned. I hope not too much of their house has been damaged.

Gosh Mellon – that is an unusual position to snooze in! He looks so peaceful and beautiful. His coat looks healthy too – you and Shaun are such good parents to him.

Recent Purchases: I ordered CT’s The Rebel 2020 quad from her website. My son has offered to purchase it for Christmas for me. I have been looking at this quad for awhile now and decided to get it before it is discontinued.

Rediscoveries: Wet n’ Wild original Comfort Zone palette. It is still a really good one.

Weekend Plans: Friday – I caught up with a couple of my girlfriends (we all taught at the same school for many years) and had a wonderful lunch, down by Port Phillip bay and a good natter.
Saturday – going out for lunch with my family – I am making sure I am supporting the local restaurant industry! We are heading off to the nearby hills and probably after that, a relaxing afternoon.
Sunday – the usual shopping, cleaning and laundry.

Last recipe you tried: Hmm – last week I made a marinated beef recipe and it was yummy. You finely slice rump steak and in a casserole dish add a teaspoon (or more) of: ground cinnamon, ground ginger, garlic powder, all spice, cumin powder, mexican chilli powder; two teaspons of tumeric, onion salt and then add olive oil to make the paste. Add the sliced beef and stir to combine. Then you add the juice of a few lemons to cover and mix well. Refrigerate for a few hours or overnight. Cook it in a frypan on moderate heat till the beef is cooked to your liking. Serve it with either rice or mashed potatoes. It is very, very moorish.

That position doesn’t look comfortable to me but. Mellon looks unfazed 🤨
My recent purchases ?
A C.T. “Film Star Bronze and Glow” palette and the “Queen of Glow “ Quad
Week end plans ? We’re on lock down so sticking around this week end .
Last recipient?
A Pumpkin / Banana Loaf …( I add a splash of Cointreau and add chocolate chips. ….cuz 2020.💕

Recent Purchases: We ordered a Bowflex total-gym on special as the gyms are still closed, and likely will be for a while. We get enough cardio on the ranch and taking the dogs for walks. Also the ND BiBa palette came…..but was dry and old! Not at all as Christine had described, not at all as my other ND palettes have been. I wrote customer service, but so far nada. So disappointed 😢

Weekend plans: Working with the horses, putting extra hay in the feeders (it’s going to be cold). Clean house. Write a report for work. Drink tea.

What was the last recipe you tried?: Emeril’s caramilized sweet potato ….omg yum.
https://www.emerils.com/127511/caramelized-cane-syrup-sweet-potatoes

Find of the week: Lisa Eldridge did a makeup’s tutorial regarding Kristen Stewart….so quick, easy and eye-forward. I have been living for it.
https://youtu.be/Pv74Y8QGYng

Recent Purchases/Rediscoveries: No purchases, still waiting on my Black Friday orders, for rediscoveries I have the Urban Decay Born to Run palette. Now that I’m filming on a better phone it’s much easier to see the lighter washes of color and subtle shade gradients in my eyeshadow looks

Weekend plans: More editing and uploading vlogs from November

What was the last recipe you tried?: I tried the Bon Appetit snickerdoodles after a cooking YouTube channel I watched compared a bunch of different snickerdoodle recipes and found it to be the best one. The only change I made is that I substituted vanilla bean with extract: https://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/best-snickerdoodles

I hope you are able to help your mom deal with the effects of the burst water pipe. It can be so unsettling, and especially in a new city.

Recent Purchases: Bloomingdale’s ($24): Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Filter Bronzing Powder Refill in Tan – adore the shade (medium was too light) but dislike the packaging for storing the extra powder not in use.

I have small orders from Lancome and Cult Beauty to report when they arrive

Weekend Plans: Picked up some holiday decorations from a friend who is culling her collection. Our house has no external electrical plugs near the front of the house, so we may put up lights inside the front windows. Stopped at two stores briefly on Saturday. Making a good dent in oganizing a room that has become a catch-all from our move is my weekend project.

Last Recipe I Tried: Coconut Curry Salmon from the website A Pinch of Yum has quickly become a family favourite.

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