Tag Archives: 2020

December 2020 Finishes

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December 2020 Finishes

Hi everyone and welcome to the very last beauty finishes post of 2020! I, for one, am ecstatic that this dumpster fire of a year is drawing to a close and I am sure we are all looking forward to better times ahead. With all of the stress of the pandemic, I turn to self care in the beauty and skin care department to help me relax. So, with that in mind, we have quite a few empties to discuss today including a new moisturizer by Garnier that I am obsessed with. Let’s get to it:

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Would I Use Again?

Why/Why Not?

Clean & Clear Cleanser: I absolutely loved using this Skin Brightening cleanser every morning. The citrusy scent was invigorating, it lathered well, and I definitely think it made my skin more radiant. Not only was my face glowing but my skin never felt tight or dehydrated after each use. Bursting Beads are always a fun addition and I am extremely impressed – especially since I paid less than six dollars for this cleanser. One of the best parts? It lasted me close to five months with daily use! Total steal.

B&BW Fragrance Spray: A few years ago, I went absolutely NUTS at a Bath & Body Works semi annual sale. Lol, I purchased so many fragrance sprays in Mango Mandarin and Country Apple and I am STILL working my way through them! Granted, this is easier said than done considering one bottle of perfume normally lasts me a good five months to a half a year with daily use.

Of course, I don’t mind at all, though, because the Mango Mandarin spray is nothing short of delightful. I love the punchy citrus scent and it helps add a touch of summer to a cold winter’s day. Maybe I should practice buying in moderation next time I need more… Said no one EVER! 😀

Garnier Moisturizer: The last time I needed more of my usual SkinLab moisturizers, I noticed that their price on Amazon was TWENTY DOLLARS. I would never spend that much for skin care so I had to opt for something different. And, I’m actually really glad I did because then I never would have ended up trying the Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue gel moisturizer.

Nothing pleases Lil Red more than a good gel moisturizer and I think this one is the best. It has the most pleasant, clean scent and absorbs super quickly. Despite it being so lightweight, my skin has never felt smoother, softer, or more moisturized. With twice daily use, one jar lasted me one month and I got it for an absolute STEAL too – seven dollars for two jars on Amazon, baby!

December was a great month for beauty finishes for me and I was happy to be done with some of the products that I’ve been working on finishing for a while. Here’s to lots more successful empties in the New Year!

Which products did you use up this month? What is your favorite moisturizer? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Merry Christmas!

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Merry Christmas!

Hello everyone and a Merry Christmas and very happy holiday season to all of you! I just wanted to stop by to send wishes of health and happiness to you and yours as well as good vibes for 2021 not being as sucky as 2020. If you are celebrating with your loved ones, please continue to be smart and safe. Although the holidays are an exciting time, the coronavirus still gives massive cause for both concern and caution.

I never thought that I would be warning people of a global pandemic in one year’s time when I was writing my Christmas post last year. But, we all have to keep rolling with the punches and looking forward to better times ahead. My heart goes out to those who will not be able to celebrate with their family and friends this year but Christmas is not just a holiday – it’s a feeling. You can keep the holiday cheer going all year round and gather with those you hold dear when it’s safer.

No matter what you do or how you celebrate, I wish all of you the happiest, safest, and merriest of days and I just know that better times are right around the corner! ❤

Happy Holidays!!!

How are you safely celebrating the holidays this year? What are you looking forward to in 2021? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Holiday Season Writing Prompts

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Holiday Season Writing Prompts

Howdy! In case you haven’t noticed, I am most sympathetic to bloggers that are struggling to create content during the COVID-19 pandemic. Writing is an amazing outlet and I think that I would go crazy if I didn’t keep with my routine of daily blogging. It saddens me that there are people in the blogosphere who feel like they have nothing to say right now and I want to help. I have posted several dozen writing prompts throughout this year and I don’t plan on stopping now!

If you need some inspiration to get a post going, try writing about the following:

  • Holiday gift guides (Best gifts for him, her, parents, children, etc.)
  • Safety tips for celebrating this holiday season
  • Stories behind any of your favorite holiday decor
  • Special holiday memories
  • Favorite recipes for cold weather
  • A favorite gift you have received or given
  • What your holiday will look like this year in comparison to last
  • Sweet treats! Cookie decorating, chocolate making, etc.
  • What winter weather is like in your neck of the woods
  • A holiday themed OOTD or MOTD
  • Holiday traditions in your family
  • Pro tips for perfectly wrapped presents
  • Favorite cold weather activities
  • What the holiday season means to you

The list could go on and on…

If you’re still having a rough go of creating content and find these posts helpful, let me know because I can always make more. Questions or concerns? Write a comment or email me at: sarah.mush6794@gmail.com ❤

Has blogging in 2020 been hard for you? What are you excited to do when it’s safer to do so? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

2020 Writing Tips

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2020 Writing Tips

Hello! lifewithlilred is known for having fresh new content every day and, other than a few rare occasions, I can say that I have posted something daily for the past six plus years of my blog’s existence. Mind you, this is no easy task and even I suffer from writer’s block – especially in 2020.

I’ll be the first to admit that it’s hard to come up with content when there really isn’t anything to do safely, compliments of COVID. That hasn’t stopped me, though, and it shouldn’t prevent you from creating, either. If you’re struggling to post new content, take a look at some of the tricks that I use daily for a little inspiration:

Your posts do not have to be “groundbreaking”:

Just because it feels like you have nothing to write about doesn’t mean you don’t have anything to write about. Your posts don’t always have to be deep or profound. They can be goofy, short, and simple and people will still like it just the same. I find that my readers are happy to hear from me daily even if some of my posts are just a couple of paragraphs long.

Don’t drive yourself crazy trying to come up with content that could go viral or spark a huge discussion. All this will do is make you second guess the ideas that you have that aren’t as grand. We are all struggling through 2020 together and your readers aren’t going to like you any less if your content isn’t up to your usual standards. I promise, we all get it. ❤

Find inspiration in small things:

Johnny and I have been pretty much confined to our small apartment since March. Of course, it’s difficult to come up with posts when we are no longer going here, there, and everywhere. However, this has taught me to find inspiration in all of the little things to write about.

Did you watch a great new series on Netflix? How was your Zoom game night with your friends? Did you wrap any holiday presents recently? I promise that your small victories, struggles, or hilarious mishaps are all post-worthy. Big or small, your readers want to know what you’re up to. Don’t be so hard on yourself!

Have FUN:

I know this sounds lame but writing should be fun so have a ball with it! I love writing to music and once I’m jamming and getting into a good groove, I feel like I can’t stop writing even if I want to. Being a blogger is as fun as you make it and that should be encouraged on your page.

Host a question and answer session. Try a holiday giveaway. Do a top ten countdown of your favorite posts. There are plenty of ways to get feel good vibes on your blog but it starts with you. Don’t get discouraged – just put on your favorite songs and see what you can come up with. 🙂

I have been asked countless times throughout the COVID pandemic how I am still writing every day and I tend to answer with a combination of the tips above. I can’t wait to see what all of you come up with on the blogosphere!

How do you find inspiration for your posts? What do you do when you have writer’s block? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

4 Steps To More Success: Helping Your Children Learn From Home

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4 Steps To More Success: Helping Your Children Learn From Home

As a parent, tutoring is automatically an additional responsibility once your kids are school age. Whether you are helping with homework or teaching them how to do basic research, you are engaging in some form of tutoring. With the COVID-19 pandemic still a real threat, many parents have taken on tutoring their kids full-time to keep up with the schoolwork they may be missing. Other parents have decided to co-tutor with teachers online using the various available technologies. This is the best time for you to step up your game as a tutor so keep on reading for our tips to help you improve:

Incorporate technology:

Technology is driving education, and you must find ways to incorporate it into your teaching. Students of all ages now have access to at least a mobile phone or a laptop – even if it belongs to their parents. There are tons of apps out there that can help you to deliver any conceivable topic from history, science, math, and English tutoring, the choice is yours. You can use these apps for your professional development or you may be able to introduce these apps to your kids as a fun way to learn and explore the subject area.

Be adaptable:

No two students are the same, so you must be adaptable and quick to realize your child’s learning style. Find a method that he or she identifies with and use that to teach them to increase their participation. Some students prefer to know the subject matter and prepare before the actual class. Others learn best when the teaching is interlaced with some activities that improve their retention. Another thing to improve upon is speaking in terms that will be understood and always encouraging questions when things aren’t clear.

Be patient:

Patience is key to understanding your child and finding ways to make learning easier and more fun for them. While some students are quick to understand certain concepts, others are not. Do not get flustered or impatient. Instead, take your time to explain and break down the idea so that they can grasp it. Other students have problems with retention, and this is quite common. If you do have a student that struggles with information retention, employ the use of memory retention techniques such as mind maps and acronyms, which can be helpful in such a situation.

Seek your child’s feedback:

If your child is struggling, ask for their feedback on what you can do to make things easier. It could be that he or she is not learning in a style that best suits them. Ask them how they feel about your teaching style or approach to a topic when you are helping with homework. You can also ask them how you can make the lessons more exciting or beneficial to them. This will help you improve your teaching methods while giving your kids the opportunity to voice their feelings and have a hands on experience with their education.

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Pixabay Image

2020 has brought parents directly into the classroom with at home learning. Help them be successful with the tips above!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

November 2020 Finishes

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November 2020 Finishes

Howdy! Can you believe we’re already coming to the end of November? 2020 has, admittedly, sucked on ice but at least we’ve been flying through these past few months! November drawing to a close means it’s time to discuss all of the beauty products that I finished up so let’s get to it:

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Would I Use Again?

  • Bath & Body Works Champagne Toast shower gel: YES
  • Garnier water proof micellar water: YES
  • Azure Lux 24K Gold serum: YES
  • SkinLab Revitalize & Hydrate eye gel: NO
  • SkinLab Lift & Firm moisturizer: YES

Why/Why Not?

B&BW Shower Gel: The Champagne Toast scent from Bath & Body Works rocks! Originally, Johnny thought that this shower gel was called Champagne & Toast, which is what we call it now but no matter what name you give it – the fragrance is divine.

I ordered this body wash online without ever smelling it and I was worried that it would have an alcohol like scent. Thankfully, that was not the case at all! Rather, Champagne Toast has all the allure of fizzy bubbles mixed with sweet berries and tangerine making it oh so sweet and totally luxurious. Speaking of bubbles, this shower gel lathered like a dream and it took me one month to finish the bottle.

SkinLab Eye Gel: I have never tried the Revitalize & Hydrate eye gel by SkinLab before and I would definitely not use it again. While working through this little jar, which took me over two months, I did not notice a single difference to the delicate skin around my eyes. It also would flake clean off if you happened to rub your eyes within a half hour of applying it. Not a good look. I will be sticking to the Lift & Firm eye gel from now on!

For More On The Other Products:

Which products did you use up this month? Are there any products that you would not recommend? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Hello everyone and a very Happy Thanksgiving to all of you! Compliments of COVID, the 2020 holiday season is going to be a lot different. Family get togethers might be taking place over Zoom rather than in person or the celebrations could be pushed back until everyone can participate without crippling anxiety. No matter how you spend your day, I urge all of you to do it as safely as possible so all of your loved ones will be around to celebrate a *hopefully* normal Thanksgiving and Christmas next year.

2020 has been a wild ride and the craziness just reminds me of how thankful I am for all of the wonderful things about my life. A beautiful family, loving relationship, rewarding job, and fabulous friends both in person and online in the blogosphere are certainly nothing to sneeze at!

Thank you all so much for sharing in lifewithlilred with me because each and every one of you help keep me motivated to write each and every day. I am so proud of the sense of community that I feel on my page and I wish nothing but health, safety, and all of the good things for you and yours. ❤

Happy Thanksgiving!

Blogging Through 2020

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Blogging Through 2020

Hello! For over six years, lifewithlilred has been going strong on the blogosphere and, unless there are some crazy circumstances, I write each and every day. You all have been with me through a lot from graduating college, break ups, car accidents and everything in between. With that in mind, there has never been a lack of anything for me to write about because it always felt like something new was happening.

Then, COVID-19 came around in 2020 and said “hold my beer”. As someone who works with extremely high risk families every day, all of my previous favorite activities fell by the wayside to not only protect me but all of my clients and loved ones. This meant no more shopping in store, no movies, no restaurants, no bars – no nothing, really.

This change from a constant on the go career as well as bopping around here, there, and everywhere with Johnny as his band played shows to a mostly sedentary lifestyle in my apartment was a huge shock. I have never had a lack of things to talk about on my blog but now, some days, I just don’t feel like I have anything to say!

But, we all know that Lil Red having nothing to say is impossible and I still have managed to write every day of 2020 despite the constant ups and downs. This is something that I am really proud of myself for because I have had to get so creative with my content to keep new posts coming, which can be uber difficult when you barely leave the house, lol.

Blogging through 2020 has taught me about finding inspiration in unlikely places and being more forthright in my own opinions and beliefs. I am so thankful that all of my beloved readers have stuck with me through such crazy times and it makes me that much more motivated to get up early every morning and write before I have to head to work.

Honestly, I have always been my toughest critic and it’s sometimes hard for me to come up with nice things to say about myself. It feels so good to see the fruits of my labor every day with a new post on lifewithlilred and having such a sense of pride in my work has increased my self esteem tenfold.

Times are hard right now and everyone’s situation is different. But, in Lil Red’s world, we’re all in this together so thank you for continuing to share in this crazy journey with me! ❤

Has it been difficult for you to blog during 2020? What do you do when you have writer’s block? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

BFF Post Wedding Celebration

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BFF Post Wedding Celebration

Hello everyone! My bestie, Lea, got married on October 24th. I was supposed to be a bridesmaid for her big day but, unfortunately, I did not feel comfortable being there cause COVID. Of course, Lea was A-okay about it and was nothing short of totally understanding to all of the concerns I had. That’s what best friends of over twelve years is for! ❤

I wanted nothing more than to be at Lea’s wedding and, after she returned home from her honeymoon and was settled in, we had our own celebration. For the big evening, I got a bottle of champagne and we watched the professional video of the ceremony together.

Lea looked absolutely beautiful on her big day and it made me so emotional to see my bestie who I grew up with walking down the aisle. We laughed, I cried, and it was perfect. This hang out was, honestly, the next best thing to being able to participate in her wedding and I was so thankful that we got to have that time together because all it did was make our sister like bond even stronger.

After hearing all of the amazing stories from her ceremony and the reception to her secluded honeymoon in the mountains, Lea bestowed these lovely gifts onto me:

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^^^ How adorable is that homemade card?!

Lea has gifted her bridesmaids with the cutest prezzies throughout the months leading up to her wedding and I treasure all of them so much. She’s just the most sweet, thoughtful person and I felt honored that she still wanted to include me as much as she could despite my discomfort.

This was, easily, one of the best times I’ve had since COVID began in March and I am never going to forget it. Popping champagne with my BFF and celebrating her happiness got me over the slump that I have been in and I feel so excited to continue having life adventures with Lea every step of the way! ❤

Have you ever participated in a wedding before? How long have you and your bestie been friends for? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

2020 Approved Christmas Gift Ideas

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2020 Approved Christmas Gift Ideas

Hello! 2020 has been a crazy year, to say the least. And, until the COVID-19 pandemic gets under control, things are going to remain crazy. The coronavirus may have put a damper on your upcoming holiday plans. However, you can still be the best gifter of the bunch with these totally approved for 2020 gift ideas. Check it out:

Streaming Subscription:

If one of your giftees doesn’t have a streaming service like Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, Shudder, or Amazon Prime, then this would be the perfect time to introduce them. Buy a subscription for them for a couple of months or, heck, the entire year! The gift of entertainment will certainly go a long way right now and it will give you someone new to talk about all of your favorite shows with.

Gift Cards:

To some, gift cards might feel like a cop out gift. I have never been under that impression and am never opposed to gift cards – especially right now! Gift cards are great because you can use them during online shopping so no visits to the store are required and your giftee can pick out exactly what they want. Safe, smart, and so simple.

Date Night In:

Staying in is the best thing you can do right now so why not create a date night in for your favorite couple? Try sending them a box from Blue Apron or Hello Fresh so that they can prepare a meal together and a new board game for the evening’s entertainment. The wine is optional but would not go unappreciated… For me, at least! 😀

Craft Kits:

Another fun idea for creating entertainment at home for your giftee is assembling a craft kit for them. Whether that be a wooden bird box and some paint for a nature lover, beautiful beads for a friend who makes jewelry, or a sketch pad and colored pencils for your favorite artist a craft kit is thoughtful and sure to be a success for your artistically inclined giftees.

2020 Care Package:

Honestly, everyone can use some help right now and a 2020 care package could be the biggest crowd pleaser of all. Fill a basket with hand made cloth masks from a local business, Purell, toilet paper, and cleaning supplies. Is it the most fun? No. Is it the most useful? Absolutely! It’s just like getting socks for Christmas – no one necessarily loves it but they are always needed! 🙂

If you are struggling with coming up with gifts for everyone on your list, use the tips above for the ultimate 2020 approved ideas!

Are you all done holiday shopping? What are some of your best gift ideas for 2020? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah