Get Rid of Dry Hands FAST

Hey guys! Here are the products I use to get rid of my dry skin during the cold winter. I also featured them in a video*:

  • Intense: Aquaphor Healing Ointment – Lather as much or as little as you want on your hands before going to bed and wake up with much softer, smoother hands
  • Daily: Bath & Body Works Nourishing Hand Cream ~$5 – This smells kind of strong but soooooo good. I don’t know if I can recommend this in public places in case you are around people who have allergies to scents and fragrances but it’s lovely to use and it makes your hands soft!
  • On-the-Go: Nivea Creme $1 – It’s simple and lightly scented; I throw this in my college backpack, going-out bag, and work bag.

*Not sponsored btw, I purchased everything on my own to try and make my hands smooth again

A Fresh Start & Domain Name

Do you see the pink bmy-laptopackdrop in the feature photo? I spent $38 on it and I have no ragrets. (That was a reference to the movie We’re the Millers btw, it’s a hilarious movie that you should check out ft. Jennifer Anniston!)

Anyways, hey guys! It’s been a while since I last posted but now that my college winter break is approaching soon, I’ll have more time on my hands. I’m setting a goal of either vlogging or blogging (almost) daily.

I’ve OFFICIALLY bought my own domain name under my own name. I started thinking about how there are now more than a handful of Samantha Tran’s now who may or may not be considering a website and I had to get my hands on it for my future. (Sorry girls!)

Ban.do VS Lilly Pulitzer Agendas (+ Pictures)

This year I finally decided to buy a medium-sized Ban.do planner! Since I haven’t seen anyone else do a comparison between the Lilly Pulitzer and Ban.do ones, I thought this would be helpful to share prices, sizes, what’s inside, and which one is for you.

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PRICE

I ordered the medium-sized Ban.do agenda (left) for $28 and if you order now, you can combine a 10% off code and free shipping together. The medium-sized Lilly Pulitzer agenda (right) I used was $22 last year, this year it is priced at $24.

In terms of size, their thickness is about the same (see pic). Ban.do comes in a small non-spiral agenda and medium and large spiral agendas. Lilly Pulitzer agendas come in small, medium, large, and jumbo. Ban.do’s small non-spiral is equivalent to Lilly Pulitzer’s medium-size agenda.

INSIDES for each section of comparison pictures, I’m going to put the Ban.do (BD) picture before the Lilly Pulitzer (LP) one

  • opening the planner | right off the bat, you can see how LP tends to have a resort/vacation-related theme whereas BD is a bit more minimalistic and playful with the “secret code”
  •  after the folder | BD has a place for you to put your name on your planner whereas LP doesn’t have a designated spot. The BD has 2 sheets of stickers and LP only has 1 in the one I have to show you but they now have 2 sheets this year. BD has a little letter and LP has a “wecome to PALM BEACH” part and a cute map of palm beach.

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  • yearly/overview calendar | BD & LP both have two-year overview calendars and a “dates to remember” type of setup, the difference between the two is that LP has a year-long monthly spread twice in the planner, in the front where there are 12 pages back of back and then each month before the weekly spreads (this may have been removed from the 2016-17 edition though) and the BD only has one of each month. 
  • special | LP has a section dedicated to travel planning and an address book, BD has neither one of these but their notes section(s) make up for it.
  • notes | If you use your planner to jot down notes and other random things a lot, the BD has about 5X the amount of pages dedicated to notes. BD has 2 pages of notes after every monthly overview (there are 17 months = 34 sheets/17 pages) and a section in the back with 18 more pages/9 sheets. LP has a section for notes in the front consisting of 10 pages/5 sheets.
  • monthly calendar | BD has literally color-blocked a few pages that correspond with their holidays list. They are both easy spreads to glance at.
  • weekly spread | BD is more bare-bones while LP has a patterned border and drawing that flows onto the page partially.
  • artwork | BD gets all-girl artists for each monthly spread while LP keeps their classic look each year, according to what I’ve heard so far. If you like things to stay the same, LP is for you, if you like “artsy” changes, BD is for you.

WHICH ONE IS BEST FOR YOU?

If you’re ready for something fancier than a free school-supplied agenda but don’t have enough time to commit to decorating, the Lilly Pulitzer agenda is for you. Each page comes with a nice designed border and sometimes there are little cartoon picture drawings.

If you like planners like the Erin Condren life planner where you can design and decorate your agenda as something more than just for assignments, then the ban.do agenda is definitely for you! It doesn’t have lines so you can keep the minimalist look or create your own.

If you love the Kate Spade look but don’t want to spend as much, click this part of the sentence to see a post I wrote about the Sugar Paper Planner(s) available at target.

Let me know if this post helped you decide and any other thoughts you’d like to share!

 

Sugar Paper Planner | Review + Pics

If you want the Kate Spade look on a budget, this is the planner for you! It’s a Sugar Paper planner 2016-2017 available at Target, $10.99. I’m a very picky person when it comes to planners & stationery and finding this was a pleasant surprise. (Even though I caved a few days later and ordered a Ban.do agenda for $28, I’ll be doing a review on it later compared to the Lilly Pulitzer one.)

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Contents:

  • dates to remember 2016-2019
  • contacts (7 pages/3.5 sheets)
  • July 2016-June 2017 weekly & monthly calendars
  • notes in the back (19 pages/9.5 sheets)

Pros:

  • the cover is fun to touch/feel, it’s smooth
  • the paper is good quality
  • weekly layout has no lines, perfect for decorating
  • it is pretty thin since it’s a 12 month planner so it fits easily into a bag/backpack

Cons:

  • the paper has a slightly funky smell (like dried shrimp) if you sniff it but fades a bit
  • doesn’t have a small folder or elastic band to hold it, but that’s just a personal preference for me

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The Girl On the Train – Savers Find!

You ever had one of those moments when you walk into Barnes & Noble and spot an interesting book you’ve been wanting to read? The cover is great, the description even better, and reviews online are praising it…but then you take a look at the price…and slowly set it down and walk away before you get too attached.
I had that moment today! I’ve been wanting to read The Girl On the Train for the past few months but its retail price is $27 (Barnes & Noble, $16) (Amazon, $14). But with that price for a book I could have mixed feelings about, I could be buying other things! So I told my friend I’ll get it another time and walked away from it so we could go look through the teen fiction section.
Thirty minutes later we left the store and spotted a Savers on the opposite side of the plaza and decided to go check the books there for fun. And guess what was on one of the book shelves!!! The. Girl. On. The. Train. And for only $3! I then became The Girl With a New Book.
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Oh thrift stores, you make my wallet and my bookshelf happy.

I’ll be posting a review once I read this! I’m currently reading Confessions of a Murder Suspect by James Patterson.

$10 Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion! (FULL SIZE)

Today I was out with my girls and we went shopping and checked out a bunch of stores and browsed through their makeup sections.

We came across the Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion (Original) for only $10 at Nordstrom Rack! For the one I went to (in Millbury, MA) there were about 20 of them in a bin on one of the tables in the makeup section.

I’ll retake better photos in daylight but I just wanted to get this up tonight so whoever sees this can go get theirs soon! 🙂
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Kracie Poppin Cookin

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Earlier this week, my sister made gummy zoo animals using a Kracie Popin Cookin kit. I filmed the process and made a small clip:

I bought it from Tomodachi at the Mall of America (Bloomington, MN) as a souvenir. My sister has been watching these little videos for a few years already but we never saw them available in stores! They can be found online via Amazon (prime shipping!) or cheaper but it would take up to a month to be delivered versus two days.

Do you know if there’s any U.S. versions available? I wish I had these candy kits while I was growing up!

TJMaxx Preppy Finds!

IMG_6925Today I came to TJMaxx in a desperate attempt to buy a pencil pouch for college (classes start in a week!) I ended up coming home with a new journal, water bottle, makeup brush bag, a comfy sweatshirt, lounge tee, and drawstring joggers…yikes! But the extra grabs were totally worth it, I’ll thank myself during finals week. The clothes I’ll probably feature in a separate master Back-to-School post!
IMG_6929She looks for ADVENTURE around every corner Journal ($4.99)
This journal caught my attention because my friends always love bringing me along places because apparently I turn every little thing into an adventure. I can easily get excited over things like going to target or buying bread from the grocery store…don’t act like you don’t do the same!!!
The majority of the journals in TJMaxx’s stationery section were wanderlust or travel-related, which made me SOO happy to have shopped today. I even recognized most of the cute little quotes on some covers.

IMG_6928Bubba – Insulated Water Bottle ($9.99)
Guys, this is seriously such a cute combination of colors AND it came with a second straw! Like it’s so nice to be able to replace one while the other is being washed and dried or just save it until the first one breaks.

IMG_6927Tender Love + Carry – Makeup Brush Bag ($4.99)
Not only is their brand name totally cute, their bags are too! I rarely have come across them in person but they are sold online in other countries like New Zealand and Australia. I’m going to use this as a little pencil pouch instead so I don’t start hoarding supplies in my backpack this year 🙂

Let me know if you have any questions or find similar items anywhere else! Especially makeup bags that can be used as pencil pouches!