Join my mailing list!

101 in 1001


Justen and I started dating two years ago in January, so we got to experience calendar years together, which was so fun. This is our first New Years Day to New Years Eve being married, so I wanted to document it all with monthly little recaps!


january 2018 //

Coffee shops visited: 3
Albina Press
Hidden River Roasters



4 – Spent the evening with my friend Anna.
5 – Camas First Friday, Clue Edition. Lots of sweets. Went to Hidden River Roaster.
6 – Took a girl I know shopping at Target, babysat for our friends.
7 – Justen & Andrew’s birthday party.
10 – I met up with Jackeline from Jarmendjai at Albina Press for great coffee + great convo. 2 years since we met. Stopped at Thatcher’s, where we met.
11 – Adriana came over + we exchanged Christmas gifts and watched Pitch Perfect
12 – Went to Heathen Brewing for Justen’s birthday dinner
13 – We went to Seattle for Bee + Kat’s Harry Potter themed wedding. Stopped at the Starbucks Reserve.

january 2018 //

january 2018 // january 2018 //

14 – Baby Lauren was born!
18 – Our 2nd dating anniversary. Justen used his birthday money to take us to Red Robin.
27 – Drove to Bainbridge Island for Auden’s 2nd birthday.
29 – Coffee with my dad, Bachelor with Maria.
30 – Coffee with my friend Marlis. Budget meeting dinner at Cheesecake Factory.

the woman in cabin 10 // january 2018 //

Books read: Living Well, Spending Less and The Woman in Cabin 10.

Blog posts written:

Things accomplished from my 101 in 1001 list

harry potter night // january 2018 //

  • No spend month (#6) *FINISHED!
  • Reviewed 2 months of Birchboxes (#39)
  • Posted 10 new blog posts (#40)
  • Started Project 12 (#42)
  • Visited 2 coffee shops (#47)
  • Created a signature espresso drink (#48) *FINISHED!
  • Tried a new recipe (#50)
  • Read 2 books (#57)
  • Started my empty shelf to keep books I read (#58)
  • Finished watching the Harry Potter series (#61) *FINISHED!
  • Bought fresh flowers (#68)

Share this article

January 2018 Birchbox Review

In my never-ending quest to finally get on top of my little sample pile, I’ve started to be more diligent with my Birchboxes as they come in. I deliberately go to the box every time I reach for ANY beauty product and first double check that there is nothing in there that I could try. It helps that I REALLY want to cross something off of my 101 list and reviewing Birchboxes is on that list.

I tried all of the samples in my Birchbox and I’m here to report back.

january 2018 birchbox review //

This month I got 5 samples and the theme was “Find your happy,” though it’s hard to see that writing on this little card!

january 2018 birchbox review //

One of the things I love about Birchbox is that they always include a card with information about the samples in my box. I frequently have to refer back to the paper to make sure I’m not putting a face cream in my hair or a blush stick on my lips. Y’all, I am actually THAT clueless. blonde shrug emoji

january 2018 birchbox review //

I immediately tried the Smashbox Always On Lipstick. It was listed as a “warm pink,” but all I saw was a coral/orange. Obviously, this has a filter (sorry, not sorry) but it was actually an orangey coral. Which I guess COULD be called a warm pink, but I put it on and was NOT a fan. I’m definitely more of a blush/pink/nude kind of lip color girl. This is a bit much.

january 2018 birchbox review //

Before the next time, I applied makeup, I used the Bioderma Pore Refiner because I LOVE pore refiners. But it turns out, I don’t like gels. I usually use the Benefit Porefessional stuff and I love that it’s matte and slightly tinted. This Bioderma stuff was a gel and I didn’t like that I had to wait for it to dry. I’ll try this again on a day I don’t wear makeup to see how it feels on its own.

I also drew myself a bath and tried the hair mask. Since my hair is long, I find that samples like this are kind of weird. In order to apply a generous amount, I have to use up like 3/4 of the product so I end up either using too little or potentially using way too much. I used the whole thing, haha. I knew the minute I started rinsing it off that it was good – my hair LOOKED really smooth and soft. I didn’t style my hair as normal, but my roots did seem a bit shiny/greasy so I think I may have applied too much. It was alright, but definitely not a product I’d buy on my own.

I was intrigued by the LAQA & Co B’Lighter Blush + Highlighter. The instructions are to dab a little bit on your cheekbones, brow bones, bridge of your nose and cupids bow. IDK, I tried it but it didn’t really seem to blend well so I applied a little blush on top of it – the instructions never said if this was the purpose, but I did like that it added some colored highlight.

january 2018 birchbox review //

On my eyes, I usually wear gold/tan shadow without fail. I’m really weary of too much color. I think in general I hate anything that draws attention to me, so I tend to just stick with really natural/neutral colors of makeup. This shadow was PERFECT. It had a bit of a shimmer and I was able to put a second layer in the crease of my eyes to give it a little more somethin’ somethin’.

january 2018 birchbox review //

That’s using the pore refiner, the highlighter + the eyeshadow. The lip color is one I got in my January Birchbox… in 2015. I looked it up and was like my word, I REALLY suck at using up Birchbox samples. If you’re interested in joining Birchbox, which is 5 samples a month for $10 (PLUS they have a big online store where you get points back for your purchases – I literally ONLY buy my beauty products on Birchbox *or Root Pretty* and I often get great deals and savings because of their sales & my points) please use my link and join Birchbox here 🙂



Share this article

Cinnamon Wild Orange Mocha

Coffee is one of my most favorite things in THE WHOLE WORLD. It’s a daily must have for me. I can drink black coffee, but I enjoy coffee in fun, creative drinks. On my 101 in 1001 list, I created the challenge to come up with my own signature espresso drink. A few years ago I got a little Mr. Coffee espresso machine and figured that’s all I needed to become an espresso beverage genius (LOL don’t believe the hype).

Since Justen and I aren’t spending money this month, I figured this would be the best month to tackle this challenge. I evaluated what I had to work with, and decided on something I thought could be cool. Wild Orange flavor with cinnamon seasoning in a mocha!

Here’s how I made it, and in typical Stephanie fashion do not expect ANY measurements 😀

ONE // Start the milk. The milk frother on my espresso machine has stopped working so I just heat the milk old fashioned on the stovetop. I have a milk thermometer so I can get it to just the right temperature. I use a whisk to stir the milk and create a little bit of foam.

cinnamon wild orange mocha //

TWO // Start the coffee. While the milk is going, either start your espresso or just use what you have in the pot. If you don’t have an espresso machine, you can make a small cup of coffee with twice the coffee to get it a little stronger in the drink!

THREE // Coat your mug with chocolate sauce. I use the Torani syrup. I coat the inside and put some at the bottom. Stop and take a pic, obviously.

cinnamon wild orange mocha //

THREE // Put in a drop of Wild Orange oil. Oils are potent, and one drop is enough! I also took a minute to smell the bottle and feel happy because Wild Orange is one of my all-time favorite oils.

cinnamon wild orange mocha //

FOUR // Pour in the espresso/coffee. I tend to pour it in circles so that it heats as much of the chocolate on the bottom as possible.

cinnamon wild orange mocha //

FIVE // pour on the cinnamon. I like to put this in after the coffee for no reason other than I’d rather have the cinnamon be separate from the pile of chocolate.

cinnamon wild orange mocha //

SIX // top with milk. Again, I do the circle thing.

cinnamon wild orange mocha //

I use the whisk to whisk it all together.

SEVEN // enjoy and take pictures of your drink for instagram stories.

cinnamon wild orange mocha //

Here’s what I used! If you’re interested in knowing more about the Wild Orange oil, drop me a line. 😉


What would your signature espresso drink be? I’m always looking for new things to try!


Share this article

January Goals

New Year, Same Me 😀

This year I’m continuing to set 10 goals a month with an overall goal of achieving 90 of the 120 goals so I can cross that off of my 101 list.

1 year, 120 goals.

Here’s how December’s Goals went:

  1. Try a new recipe I made Peppermint Brownies with Peppermint Frosting
  2. Buy fresh flowers Yes! Last month I was so bummed that I broke my flower buying streak.
  3. Get a new social security card I finally did it! It wasn’t as bad I’d imagined. Now I’m waiting to get it in the mail so I can get a new drivers license.
  4. Try 2 new coffee shops YES! I FINALLY went to Presso, which is the cutest coffee shop in town. and then we went to Fillmore Coffee. 😀 and I’m working on documenting things more with pictures, so here they are:

    ps don’t worry I’m going to start painting my nails a lot more so that these coffee pics are more instagram like-able.
    ps again that bracelet is a $5 find from the antique store we live above.

  5. Create a bullet journal for my 2018 goals Done! I decided to add this to the back of my Happy Planner for easy access! The picture is at the top of this post 🙂
  6. Leave a $20 tip for a bill under $10 Done!
  7. Consume 64 ounces of water a day for 2 weeks Done! I’d started this prior to my gallbladder surgery, so once I got home I started back. I peed so much. Like woke myself up in the middle of the night to pee.
  8. Read 2 books Finished Invisible Influence (it was really ho-hum). Started to read Living Well, Spending Less.
  9. Read a book of the Bible
  10. Memorize and make a blog post about my most FAVORITE curry chicken recipe. I memorized it, but I didn’t get a chance to blog about it! We don’t have a microwave so we have to be able to eat the food or else I won’t get to enjoy it at all. But it’s coming for you in January.

I finished 7.5/10 – 75%! Last month I only finished FOUR. So I’ll take it.

january goals //

Speaking of January! Here are my January goals:

  1. Buy fresh flowers (going for 12 straight months of this!)
  2. No Spend Month (nothing but gas + groceries!)
  3. Try a new recipe
  4. Finish the Tone It Up 5-Day Detox
  5. Run 9 Miles (ugh)
  6. Finish watching Harry Potter (since we’re not going out to spend money, this is a good month to stay in and cross something off of my 101 list!)
  7. Create a signature espresso drink (Refer to the notes in #6!)
  8. Read a book and a book of the Bible
  9. Organize some things. By some things I mean:
    -Bathroom cabinet
    -Bathroom closet
  10. Publish 10 blog posts

I’ve been trying to remember to keep some goals that will take some time to work towards (like reading a book) and others that I could decide to do at any moment (like organizing something or buying flowers).

What are you planning to accomplish this January??


Share this article

Cozy winter movie nights with WinCo pizza and Coca-Cola®

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, INC. and The Coca-Cola Company, all opinions are mine alone. #WinCoPizzaNight #CollectiveBias

Is it just me, or does it seem like the days go by faster once the sun starts setting earlier? Suddenly it’s “night time” at 4 pm and it’s hard for me to want to do ANYTHING once the sun goes down.

Pair that with being a newlywed whose husband takes on an overtime project and making dinner when he gets home + eating it + cleaning up after dinner is LITERALLY followed by pajamas and bed. Y’all, that has been our glamorous life. When people ask how married life is going for us we’re like IDK we really don’t see each other that often.

Luckily, we make time to try and get time to slow down. We’ve adjusted our language from not “having time” to not “making time,” because we have as many hours in the day as Beyonce, according to Pinterest. Anyway!

On my 101 in 1001 list is a goal to watch a bunch of movies Justen wants me to watch, one of them being A Christmas Story! We made time by picking up a WinCo pizza and Coca-Cola® (for him) and a Diet Coke (for me)!  Really, is there any better way to pair pizza than with Coca-Cola?!

WinCo (follow them on Facebook and Pinterest!) is an employee-owned company with consistently low prices. Their Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat (ilovewinco) are full of behind the scenes and employee stories, which I LOVE. They limit their advertising, which helps them pass that savings on to their customers! Cozy nights in that don’t break the bank? Double win. The cozy night savings go even further. Save $1 when you buy any WinCo Pizza and (2) 2-Liter Coca-Cola Beverages (in-store coupon offer Ends 2/28/18)! We picked up a take and bake pizza at the deli and grabbed our Coca-Cola on our way to check out.

We popped in the pizza, got on our pajamas and queued up A Christmas Story. The pizza was done just in time, and thanks to our festive paper plates + cups, there were ZERO dishes to do afterwards! Which meant that we got to spend the rest of the night all cozied up, watching the movie.

Here’s the thing, y’all. It’s not about not having time. It’s not that we don’t have enough time to make memories or spend quality time or pause life, it’s that we don’t MAKE time to do those things.

If you live near a WinCo (check their site for store locations), pick up one of their deli pizzas (you can even get them HOT and READY TO GO!) grab a bottle of Coca-Cola and make time to have a night with someone you love.

Also – if you had a list of MUST WATCH movies for your spouse or best friend, what would be on them?




Share this article

Empties v 15 {Sept & Oct}

So on my list of 101 things to do in 1001 days is to do an empties post every month for a year. I started this in July. I posted in July and August, and then in September I only used up TWO PRODUCTS and I was like ehhhh not even worth writing about. But then I got back on the using shhh up train and used up more products in October and figured hey, I never said I had to do one empties post per month. So here I’m combining September and October and crossing off both months because I’m the boss of my 101 list and I can do what I want, right?

Here are the products I used up in September:

Eve Lom Cleanser

Okay I have to be honest about this one. I’ve had this for… way too long. I saved up my Birchbox points and cashed them in one day to buy this full sized Eve Lom Cleanser for like a zillion dollars. Not quite a zillion, but you know… $50!!! I got a sample of it in one of my Birchboxes and LOVED it. You spread the cleanser on your dry face and then you get a muslin cloth hot + wet and let it sit on your face and breathe in deeply. You do it twice and the third time you use the muslin cloth to wipe it off. It’s amazing.

But here’s the issue I have with products I really like. I tend to not use them often because I don’t want them to run out. Is this stupid or what? So I’ve had this probably beyond its expiration date but only use it when I feel fancy, until I realized I just need to GET RID OF my products. It’s so good, but I’d highly recommend trying to find a sample of it before investing in it.

Acure Pore Minimizing Facial Scrub

Yo I’ve never really used a red clay product before so tell me this if you have: are they SUPPOSED to smell like butt? I actually gave up on using this one because it smelled so foul! I got this as part of an environmentally conscious skincare Birchbox and really hated it. I’m okay with earthy smells, but not when they smell THIS bad. Abort mission.


and October:

Rimmel Just Let It Go Eye Makeup Remover

I got this years ago as part of an Influenster VoxBox and then couldn’t find it ANYWHERE! Eventually I spotted it at Grocery Outlet so I picked up a bottle. It’s pretty good! I like that it’s gentle on the eyes but it’s really effective at getting eye makeup off. The bottle lasted for awhile, too!

Root Pretty Organic Peppermint Toner

I have this unofficial goal of sampling EVERYTHING from the Root Pretty line 😀 I liked this peppermint toner, but I’d rather stick with my witch hazel + lemon toner. It’s a great option for anyone looking for a new toner that’s full of really great, organic products. Also use this link to get 10% off your first Root Pretty purchase 🙂 

Harvey Prince Petaly Noir

Yeah no. I really don’t like strong floral perfumes and this was one of them, if I remember correctly. I definitely prefer citrus or earthy scents.

100% Pure Coconut whipped body butter

That statement about keeping great products and using them sparingly applies here. Kristen got me this as a gift for Christmas maybe TWO years ago{!?} and I’ve been so stingy with using it! In my efforts to declutter my beauty products and not be scared of emptying products I love, I started applying this coconut body butter with a drop or two of lavender oil on my feet before bed. SO GOOD. It’s really moisturizing and thick so a little goes a long way. I HIGHLY recommend 100% Pure’s EVERYTHING.

GlamGlow ThirstyMud Hydrating Treatment

A few years ago I saw a YouTube video about GlamGlow and they’ve been one of those brands I’ve become quietly in awe over and I have no reason why, haha. Getting this sample was so great because I’ve been wanting to try their products! I really liked this – it’s kind of like a mask but also a moisturizer. You apply it to your face and then let it sit. If there’s anything left over you can rub it into your face so there’s no washing or anything! It didn’t leave a greasy residue but I did feel like my face felt more oily than normal for the rest of the day, so I won’t be purchasing this.

L’Oreal Infallible Paints Eye Shadow 

Okay so true story – I was at the Bins one day and saw this L’Oreal eyeshadow still in its wrapper with a Target salvage sticker on it so YOU KNOW I added it to my cart. Except I literally hated this stuff. I tried it twice. Maybe it’s a user issue (could easily be) but I felt like it was SO MUCH on my eyes. Like the creasing was out of this world after wearing it for awhile and it just felt really chalky and gross. Hard pass.

Living Proof Restore Mask Treatment

Another Birchbox – at some point just assume EVERYTHING is from or originated from a Birchbox – I like hair masks because my hair is really long and REALLY susceptible to breaking/splitting/etc. This was a pretty good hair mask, but nothing special and if I’m gonna shell out money for a hair mask, I want it to be special.


Well there it finally is! You can see that I was so determined to get this posted and those empty bottles out of the apartment that I took iPhone photos, but whatever!

Share this article