Moving On Up: New Couch Edition

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Moving On Up: New Couch Edition

Helloooo, darlings! During my move in mid-April, I did almost all of my shopping via secondhand and consignment shops. I was happy to do this because not only did it save me a buttload of money but it gave me a lot of unique pieces of furniture and decor that I’m confident no one else will have. I was also bequeathed with some amazing items by some of my client’s families including my beautiful curio cabinets and crystal collection.

The generosity of the families I work with never ceases to astound me and, thanks to one of them, I have a gorgeous new to me red velvet couch for my living room. Check it out:

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Now, don’t get me wrong. I really like my old loveseat that is currently still in my living room until I figure out what to do with it. But, I’m not going to lie, it’s not the comfiest thing on the planet. When I’m reading or watching a movie, I like being able to curl up and relax. My loveseat is quite small and it makes getting the optimum snugly feeling that I require impossible.

So, when the parents of one of my clients began renovating their living room complete with new furniture, I couldn’t say no to the offer of their old couch. It’s funny, because I never even knew that they owned this pretty little number because my client and I don’t spend time in the living room, we are mainly out and about in the community. And, when I first laid eyes on it, it was definitely love at first sight!

I adore the vintage chic shape, the soft and plush velvet material, and, of course, the color! The best part about my new to me couch is that it’s one hundred percent snuggle approved. Because it’s made on a curve, it fits to my body perfectly when I’m laying down and I am reveling in that because it just wasn’t an option with my straight as an arrow loveseat.

And, luckily enough, the couch goes exceptionally well with my furniture that I already had in place. It wouldn’t have been a big deal if it didn’t but the fact that my new couch looks like it should have been in my apartment all along is the cherry on top. My client’s parents were going to donate the couch if I didn’t want it so I am very happy that it ended up in the Lil Red Foundation, instead, and am so totally thankful for their help in making my little apartment the ultimate home. ❤

How is your house or apartment furnished? Do you like a more modern or vintage look when it comes to your decor? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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The Importance Of After-School Activities For Kids

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The Importance Of After-School Activities For Kids

Being able to give your kids the best start in life is important to any parent and, with that, their education and the life experiences they have growing up is essential. Activities for your kids can help keep them engaged and on a successful path. There are plenty of reasons why after-school activities are important to take part in for your children, like the following:

New Experiences:

As a child, you remember everything, and that’s both the good times and the bad. The experiences you get through life help you become who you are when you reach adulthood and, even then, you’re still learning! After-school activities will provide your children with new experiences that they may not get in the school itself. Opening them up to more of this is only going to be better for creating the memories that will stay with them forever and that they may end up passing onto their children.

The Opportunity To Socialize:

Being in a group environment and meeting new people helps to build a child’s ability to socialize successfully. Being shy is nothing to be worried about as this is a personality trait, just like any other. However, it’s good that even someone who’s shy can still have a conversation with someone. Doing activities that involve sports or team communication are a great way to help speak to others and, more importantly, to find those friendship groups where they fit in. It’s often something we learn as we grow, but there’s no harm in finding those you know you’ll like sooner!

Helps Them Figure Out Their Passions:

With an afterschool stem class, there’s so much more that a child could be tapping into that they just don’t get in normal school timetables. This is where passions can be discovered, and it may end up helping them in figuring out what career they’d like to do when they’re older. Of course, as children grow up, their career aspirations dramatically change. However, there’s nothing wrong with encouraging that exploration into what brings them happiness and joy.

Builds Confidence:

Confidence is something that some are naturally gifted with and, for others, it’s something you gain and grow over time. Being confident can help push you to achieve what you want in life. As a child, being in a new environment can feel a little nerve-racking, but the more that they’re exposed to these activities, the more confidence you’ll see in them each time. As parents, it can be wonderful to see this confidence in your children. To see them be determined or to not let anything get in their way is one life lesson that’s certainly worth learning for everyone.

After-school activities contribute to giving the best start in life for your child. Find some classes or groups that they might have interest in and watch them grow!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Groovy Movies: Aladdin Edition

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Groovy Movies: Aladdin Edition

Helloooo everyone! I can’t say that I am a HUGE Disney fan but it’s not like I don’t enjoy the movies, either. It has been an exciting time in the movie world because live action remakes of Disney classics are the new trend. Unfortunately, I wasn’t overly impressed with Beauty And The Beast or The Lion King’s remake. However, I absolutely LOVED the live action Aladdin, despite its poor reviews. So, take a look at the toe tapping trailer and let’s discuss:

^^^ And, as always, I have no rights to this video!

Normally, a Disney film isn’t my first choice to play after a day at work but, I’m not going to lie, I was looking forward to watching Aladdin. Last Christmas, I had the absolute pleasure of being able to see the Broadway rendition of Aladdin at Playhouse Square with my family and I felt like the 2019 film was a wonderful blend of the Broadway show and the original cartoon. Spending the evening watching the movie gave me a new appreciation for the music and artistry that went into the iconic original and it was such a beautiful, modern nod to its predecessor.

The costumes, scenery, and *most* of the characters were divine but Will Smith as the genie completely made the film for me. He was utterly brilliant and I think Robin Williams would be proud of the performance that was so inspired by his own but with a fresh, new spin on it.”You Ain’t Never Had A Friend Like Me” reminded me so much of the Broadway performance that I really enjoyed and Will Smith’s fabulous flamboyance kept me in stitches the whole time.

I thought Jafar and Jasmine were also exceptionally strong characters and were cast well. But, I wasn’t too crazy about the choice for Aladdin. Had he not been acting alongside such powerful cast mates he would have totally sizzled out and he was outshined the entire movie. He was just too meek and mild and, although he was the title character, he didn’t stand out in anyway shape or form. But, because the rest of the film was so spot on, a poor casting choice for the lead was just a blip on my radar.

What I loved the most about Aladdin was the big picture that was created in every scene. The glorious palaces, the bustling market of Agrahbah, and the vast deserts all seemed so real that I felt like I was right there, too. The magnificent choices in color, costumes, and oh yeah – the fantastic musical numbers just seemed like the cherry on top of what was already splendid. Saying that Aladdin was visually stimulating is a severe understatement and the beauty of the rapidly changing scenery in “A Whole New World” moved me to tears.

If you’re a die hard Disney fan, I think you’ll love this movie. And, if you’re like me, who isn’t the most avid Disney fan – you are still going to love this movie. Aladdin was a fast moving tale of being true to yourself, unexpected girl power, and that everything is a little bit better with your friends by your side… magic powers or no! I rate this movie with a nine out of ten and I highly recommend it!

What were your thoughts on the new Aladdin? What has been your favorite Disney movie remake? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Featured Image By: IMDb

Lil Red’s Book Club: The Lying Game Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: The Lying Game Edition

Howdy! I recently finished another Ruth Ware novel called The Lying Game and have read The Woman In Cabin 10 and In A Dark, Dark Wood by her this summer, too. I have to say, I wasn’t overly impressed with either of those books but The Lying Game was a great read and I am happy that I chose to give Ware one more try before calling it quits and finding another author to read. So, without giving any spoilers away, let’s discuss:

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The Lying Game revolves around new mother, Isa, and her three best girlfriends from high school, Kate, Thea (Whose name I’m still not sure how to pronounce!), and Fatima. At their boarding school, the girls reveled in what they called “The Lying Game” and would keep a scoreboard to record the points from the tall tales that they would spin based on the quality and if people actually believed them. The game was supposed to be all in good fun and the rules were simple, including “never lie to your friends” and “know when to stop the lie”.

The girls spent one year at the boarding school together, which came to an abrupt halt when they were asked to leave quietly in the wakes of a possible scandal that directly involved them. And, although it’s a rarity that they talk now as they are all in their thirties, when a friend texts the three words of “I need you” the now women drop their responsibilities immediately and flock to the one in distress.

So, when Kate sends Isa the call to action, she packs up her belongings with her six month old daughter in tow and makes the journey to her, near the old boarding school. The text was indeed an urgent one because once the ladies arrive to Kate’s, it is revealed that a human bone was found in the sea – a result of their “game” being taken too far. With a police investigation nipping at their heals, the once best friends have to come up with a plan and unravel the truth behind their lies before an arrest is made. Were they murderers? Covering something up? Or just plain stupid? Read the book and find out!

I absolutely adored The Lying Game and devoured it in a matter of days. It was so refreshing to read a book with a tangible plot and told from the perspective of someone with a sound mind. Because, let’s be honest, the unstable narrator shtick has been hopelessly drawn out. The Lying Game was filled with twists and turns that actually seemed plausible and I really had no idea what the end result was going to be.

It was interesting to see how a mistake that happened in their teenage years has haunted each woman in the almost two decades since it happened. Each one dealt with the trauma in a different way and it made for fascinating characters with realistic flaws and personalities. The Lying Game was a wild ride and I am now ready to tuck into another Ruth Ware novel ASAFP!

And, now for the star rating…. I award The Lying Game with an eight out of ten. The plot was riveting, the characters were all likeable in their own ways, and I genuinely enjoyed myself while reading it. Highly recommend.

Has anyone read The Lying Game? What were your thoughts on it? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

NJOYing Myself

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NJOYing Myself

Helloooo everyone! So, it’s no secret that I love me a good cigarette. I have been a smoker for longer than I care to admit and I really had no intention of quitting any time soon. But, once I was introduced to the NJOY vape pen by one of my girlfriends, I decided to give it a try. Now, I’m well aware that vaping is not much better than good old fashioned cigarette smoking but, hey, it’s an improvement and I’ll take it! Check it out:

I have been using my NJOY for about three weeks now and haven’t had a cigarette since. I admit, the device in itself is pretty lame looking but it was only a dollar at the gas station and a pack of two liquid pods was ten bucks. I have enjoyed the watermelon and mint cartridges and, as opposed to smoking a whole cigarette, I can hit this once or twice and then go about my day.

It’s not like I was a pack a day smoker or anything, I had three maximum on a longer work day and none to one on a day off. But, my NJOY has saved me money and it’s nice to be able to do it anywhere without disturbing anyone or making the room or car smell smokey. I am also thankful that I’m not experiencing any of the withdrawal symptoms that I would get if I quit cold turkey right away. The last time I quit smoking, I gained weight, which is a really sensitive thing for me and it made me never want to quit again.

I don’t plan on using the NJOY for forever and I’m quite confident in being able to kick this habit, too. In fact, I’ve noticed that the longer I’ve had it, the less I’ve been using it throughout the day. It’s not perfect, but it’s a good start and I’m happy with it!

How did you quit smoking? What is your favorite vape flavor? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

“Haunted” Apartment Update

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“Haunted” Apartment Update

Hello!! Way back in May, I posted about some strange paranormal activity happening in my apartment and, since then, I’ve had quite a few people contacting me asking for updates on that spooky situation. And, I am pleased to tell all of you, that since the three occurrences that happened three days in a row, my apartment has been free of any supernatural activity. Thank goodness, because I don’t think I could handle stepping on anymore broken glass!

As an avid fan of all things horror related, I am well aware that pesky poltergeists and spirits like to kick you when you’re feeling down. This hardly seems fair, but I was definitely in a darker place during the first month or so living on my own. I felt lonely, overwhelmed, stressed out, and irritated that I was feeling all of those ways to begin with because moving out was something that I wanted to do.

So, it makes sense to me that I picked something up that wanted to stir up more feelings of unease while I was in such a delicate state of mind. And, strangely enough, the occurrences stopped once I sat down at my laptop and wrote out all of the weirdness that was happening. My mood also improved as I got more used to being in my own place, which lifted the negativity that was bringing me down.

I’m happy to report that things have been nice and normal at chez moi and here’s to hoping that it stays that way as I continue on through this thing called life!

Who else has experienced paranormal activity in their home? What made it stop? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Choose Kindness

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Choose Kindness

Helloooo! It seems like all one needs to do is turn on the news for a scary story to tell in the dark. Shootings, political unrest, and unthinkable crimes play on a loop and it can make this world feel like a terrifying place to live in. It seems like there is just no kindness left and it is something that we all need reminded of from time to time to take it upon ourselves to improve. That is why I am so happy that my mom picked out this amazing shirt for me that she found at a recent trip to the farmers market. Check it out:

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My mom is the queen of sweet surprises and she picked out this shirt for me for a number of reasons like my love for learning languages, my work with people with special needs, and the fact that a friendly reminder never hurts. It is easy to get so wrapped up in your own problems that you don’t realize you might be coming off as rude to the people that you encounter throughout your day. And, with a kind word or gesture you have the option to completely turn a stranger’s day around as opposed to ruining it for them with a snarky comment or letting the door slam in their face.

Choosing kindness takes practice, as it seems to be second nature to always look out for yourself. But, once you get the hang of it, it becomes something that doesn’t need thinking about anymore. And, remember – you have no idea what a stranger is going through, so don’t make things any worse for them. Choose kindness today and watch the world around you change for the better. ❤

How do you choose kindness? What are simple ways to make someone’s day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah