Tag Archives: favorites

At Home Concerts Pt. 2

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At Home Concerts Pt. 2

Hello! For those of you who don’t know, my “big girl” job is as an independent provider for adults with special needs. Pre-COVID, community integration was my specialty and I was always finding exciting activities and events for my clients to participate in that they might not have had access to before.

One of my favorite haunts “back in the day” with a client who is a music lover was a vinyl record club at the library where a group of our now good friends would sit around, eat pizza, listen to music, and talk about anything and everything. It was such fun and we both miss it a lot so, naturally, at home concerts had to happen when record club was no longer an option.

At home concerts are one of my favorite activities to do with clients now because it’s fun, safe, and I love singing and dancing with my pals! If you remember my original At Home Concerts post, you will know I taught one of my friends how to use YouTube and we are still going strong on watching his favorite golden oldies artists perform.

My other client has a much different taste in music, though. He loves rap! And so do I so at home concerts with him are an absolute trip. In fact, he was the one who introduced me to Cardi B and she’s one of my faves now! Every week we alternate who is going to pick the album and we spend the entire time dancing on opposite ends of the room, laughing, and talking about everything from the important to the downright silly.

Pre-COVID, at home concerts were the last thing on my mind when I could take my clients to all kinds of wonderful events where live music was played. Post-COVID, I find at home concerts to be an inspired idea and it has become my new favorite part about my job.

Exploring different genres of music, hearing songs I’ve never listened to before, and seeing my clients have fun is a high point of my day when we feel like listening to some tunes. We all consider our at home concerts to be an exciting event and it could be for you and your friends/family too!

Dress as your favorite artists, celebrate a different theme or genre, or even learn the different dances of the times so you can better groove to the music. An at home concert can turn a blah day into something really awesome – all it takes is a little creativity. 🙂

What are some of your favorite at home activities? Do you have any suggestions for what my clients and I should listen to next? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Barbie Dreams

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Barbie Dreams

Hello! I don’t know about all of you, but when I was little I love, love, LOVED to play with dolls. Any kind would do – Barbie, Polly Pocket, Bratz and whatever else I could dress up and create stories with. Dolls always helped stimulate my imaginative play and I couldn’t wait to take each and every doll out of my toy box and change their outfits, careers, names, and story lines.

While my sister and I were in Pittsburgh visiting our cousin at her amazing microblading studio, Kristen told me the platforms that I had on looked like Bratz doll shoes:

It was basically the best compliment ever and it brought me back to the hours on end that I would spend playing dolls in my youth. I absolutely think that my love of dolls helped stoke the coals of the burning passion I have for fashion today. I have also always loved to write and my ever changing plots for all of my dolls definitely helped with that, too.

It has been literal decades since I’ve played with dolls but, now that I have a little niece (Valerie), I cannot wait to instill the joys of story telling and dress up with her. I was adamant about buying Val her first baby doll for her first birthday and it makes me so happy when I see her snuggling up with her gift from me.

My late grandma had the most divine collection of Madame Alexander dolls – many of which I have today. I love having these special, beautifully costumed dolls that my grandma held so dear and I still admire them as if I was seeing them for the first time. I am so thankful for my mom and grandma for helping develop my love of dolls because it impacted my adult life so positively.

Here’s to looking forward to many hours of playing dolls with my niece as she continues to grow and to looking backward at the favorite toys of my youth that I will always love. ❤

What was your favorite toy growing up? How did your favorite activities in youth impact your adult life? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

October 2020 Funky Time Jams

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October 2020 Funky Time Jams

Hi! One of the big things that my clients and I do together now that we don’t really go anywhere is listen to music. I swear, we are constantly having concerts starring each other and honestly can make an afternoon of it. Sometimes I’m dancing the YMCA and other times I’m spitting bars to Cardi B! Lol, my job is never boring and it’s impossible to hear the following songs without thinking of the people I work with:

^^^ As always, I have no rights to these songs or videos!

This is such a random compilation of songs but each set of three are usually the first songs that come to mind when I think of a specific client. I really get a tour of different styles of music each week, going from girl power anthems to golden oldies all the way to rap and, yes, Marilyn Manson. (I got one of my guys hooked on him!)

Impromptu dance parties, sing alongs, and at home concerts have become primary sources of entertainment when I’m at work and my clients have a blast every time. In some way shape or form, I’m pretty sure we’ve developed some kind of hand movement routine or different melodies to all of my client’s top picks. We even make music videos of us singing our favorite songs together!

Coming up with enticing activities to do at home is the name of my work game now. Whether that be dancing the Hokey Pokey or the Electric Slide in someone’s kitchen to going for a drive with the windows down and music blasting, my brain is always working overtime to help my clients stay safe while still enjoying themselves. I love having “our songs” with each person I work with and nothing warms my heart more than when one of them hears a tune and says “this is our jam”. ❤

Is there a song that reminds you of someone whenever you hear it? What is your favorite song to dance to? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Morning Star Meals

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Morning Star Meals

Hello! I have been a strict vegetarian for the closer part of two decades and literally could never imagine eating meat again. Although I have a different diet than Johnny who loves cheeseburgers, bacon, and hot dogs we still both eat the “fake” meat by Morning Star pretty regularly. Check it out:

I have never been one of the vegetarians who are put off by people eating meat so I was tickled when Johnny wanted to try my vegetarian chicken nuggets and sausage patties. I was even more thrilled about the fact that he liked them just as much as me! In fact, I consider it a rarity to have a boyfriend who is excited about me making a veggie option and not asking me to make “regular” meat for him – even though he knows I would be happy to.

We are both huge fans of the Morning Star buffalo chicken nuggets and, this past shopping trip, I got us the buffalo patties for him to try. I was about to start prepping our meal when Johnny took it upon himself to make it, instead. He air fried our patties, then buttered and toasted the buns. We topped it off with lettuce and ranch and my heart kind of melted when Johnny said “it tastes just like a spicy chicken sandwich from Wendy’s”.

My Johnny is just so dear to me and him being willing to always try new things is one of the many things I love about him. I know it seems like a little thing but Morning Star meals with my non vegetarian boyfriend will never cease to put me in all of the happy feels. I’m a lucky girl. ❤

What is the most recent new food you tried? Which other brands make the best “fake” meat? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Bath & Body Works Online Haul

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Bath & Body Works Online Haul

Hi! Both Johnny and myself freaking love the foaming hand soaps from Bath & Body Works. We have an excellent system in place where we switch off on who’s paying when we need more but the treat is that even when Johnny is paying, he still lets me pick out which scents we get. 🙂

This past week, our soap shipment arrived and, overall, I am pretty pleased with the fragrances I chose. It’s hard to pick which scents you want when you can’t smell them so I tend to stick with things we’re both more than likely going to enjoy. A trip to B&BW is a lot harder than you would think when your county is in a threat level red for COVID. -_-

Anyways, take a look at these soaps and I’ll let you know which ones I love and would leave if you are ordering online too:

Love Or Leave?

  • Beautiful Day: LOVE
  • Don’t Stop Be-Leafing: LEAVE
  • Cranberry Peach: LOVE
  • Peach Bellini: LOVE
  • Afternoon Apple Picking: LEAVE
  • All About Fall Y’all: LOVE

Lol, a lot of these picks should be no surprise to all of you! Everyone knows I love my peach and apple scents. So why did I not care for the Afternoon Apple Picking soap? Cinnamon, cinnamon, cinnamon. I HATE cinnamon. This soap has all of the scents of juicy apple and pear but, unfortunately, it is laced with cinnamon and I just can’t get down with it. It makes me feel like I am washing my hands with Big Red gum and I definitely wouldn’t have purchased it if I read its description a little better!

The Don’t Stop Be-Leafing scent of orange vanilla swirl is also one that I could do without. Originally, I thought a creamsicle fragrance would be nice and light but, unfortunately, this one is heavy to the point that it’s almost musky. When it comes to hand soaps, both Johnny and I detest a perfume-like heaviness so this is one that I will also not be buying again.

Despite two duds, I had four successes and that isn’t too bad when it comes to online soap shopping! Bath & Body Works is almost always running a six for twenty-six dollar deal on their foaming hand soaps so do be sure to get some delicious smell goods of your own. 🙂

What is your favorite B&BW scent? What is your favorite fall fragrance? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Lil Red & The Best Morning Ever

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Lil Red & The Best Morning Ever

Hi! I am and am not a morning person. I love to sleep in on the weekends but when I do need to get up for work during the week I am pretty good about not hitting the snooze button! My mornings before work are usually a bit hectic because I still need to write and get ready before I head out an hour and change later. So, I guess I have to be pretty good about not hitting the snooze button.

A few days ago, though? I hit that snooze button so hard! Fifteen minutes worth, in fact, so I had to kick it into hyper speed if I wanted to make it to work on time, write, and shower. Instead of freaking out, I said “challenge accepted” and ended up having a morning where everything went my way.

First of all, I felt awesome from the little bit of extra sleep. I also managed to leave my apartment earlier than normal because I had to drop some about to be due library books off at my mom and dad’s on the way. But, in my rush out the door as well as carrying a bunch of other crap, I forgot my can of Diet Coke on the kitchen table and didn’t realize it until I got in my car. Too late to turn back so I headed to chez parents.

LUCKY ME, though, because besides from seeing my parents bright and early (Which was nice!) I was able to snag a can of pop from their place and all was well. Then, about five minutes later, things just got a whole lot better.

I haven’t mentioned this on here, but my car radio has not been working for the past month. No radio, no CDs, no plugging in my iPod – nothing. So, I just have to play my iPod really loud while driving but it just isn’t the same. I missed being able to play the radio, specifically on Throwback Thursday, desperately and vowed to get it fixed EVENTUALLY.

Although it sucks, I came to terms with my unfortunate radio situation and was cranking AFI’s decemberunderground on my iPod when a miracle happened. I was sitting at a red light and out of nowhere my radio turned on! I literally thought I was imagining things but it really was playing and I eagerly began going through all of my favorite stations to hear what was good that I’ve been missing out on.

During my twenty or so minute drive to work, I heard all of my favorite songs on the radio and it really did feel like everything was going my way. I was just worried my radio wasn’t going to work again when I was done with my shift. LUCKY ME, though, because it did and I heard even more of my favorites on the way to my next client. It. Was. AWESOME!

Having such an amazing string of luck all morning was just the pick me up I needed to finish my work week strongly and I am still reveling in my good fortune. It really is true that the smallest things can have the biggest impact! 🙂

Have you had something lucky happen recently? Are you an early bird or night owl? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Random Lil Red Fun Facts

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Random Lil Red Fun Facts

Hello! In coronavirus times, I have become a little bit “boring”. Not because I want to, of course. Safety trumps all and with multiple high risk clients that I care for, I can never be too, well… careful! A lack of going out and socializing/shopping has definitely made maintaining lifewithlilred more difficult but no one said being a blogger was easy and I still write every day.

If you are just tuning into my page, welcome! I hope you learn something new about me. For those of you who have been with me for the past almost six years, hi again! I also hope you learn something new about me with the following:

  1. I have well over fifty tattoos and have simply lost count of how many I have at this point.
  2. I try to read at least two books per month – sometimes three if I’m feeling especially reading ravenous.
  3. I wouldn’t consider myself a huge “gamer” but I have become obsessed with Animal Crossing since I have been at home more often. Johnny and I share an island called Dingusburg and my favorite thing is fishing for sharks and diving for undersea critters. 🙂
  4. I have been self employed for the past six years and run two businesses that I am very proud of.
  5. Johnny and I are celebrating one year together on September 1st and I couldn’t be happier!
  6. My last in store shopping trip was at TJMaxx in February and I miss it desperately.
  7. I also miss going ice skating a lot too! I used to figure skate competitively and just started taking up learning how to ice dance. I even bought new skates. Then, COVID happened, and I haven’t been on the ice since March. Whomp whomp.
  8. I am an aunt to an adorable niece and nephew. I am the baby of the family with two older brothers and an older sister. I also have two dog brothers named Archie and Ollie. ❤
  9. I allow myself two “treat” outings per month and I always opt to get my hair and nails done. I think I would go crazy without my monthly fill and color touch up!
  10. I have been a vegetarian for close to two decades and I love all kinds of food – especially Indian, Mexican, and Thai. Unfortunately, Johnny is on a much different diet of chicken nuggets, hot dogs, and Honey Nut Cheerios to lower his cholesterol so I usually have to eat my favorites by my damn self… More for me!

What are some fun facts about you? Do you have any questions for me? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

August 2020 Funky Time Jams

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August 2020 Funky Time Jams

Hi! We are breezing right along through August and spooky season will be upon us before we know it – hurray! I, for one, am so over the hot ass weather and am looking forward to curling up comfortably at home with a soft blanket without sweating my nads off. *Sigh* Wishful thinking. This summer has honestly been a bit of a bust so I say let’s keep moving forward into cooler, Halloween themed times to the tune of these songs:

^^^ And, as always, I have no rights to these songs or videos!

Now, you might be wondering why I only chose three songs for the August 2020 Funky Time Jams and it’s a bit of a funny story… My car radio died. That’s it, lol. My car radio died and I have yet to get it fixed so I currently have not been listening to anything in my car except for my iPod turned up really loudly. It basically sucks and I will most definitely get it fixed EVENTUALLY!

In the meantime, I am more focused on being hyped about new music from a few of my favorite artists like Marilyn Manson and Glass Animals. Mr. Manson will be releasing a new album next month and Glass Animals just dropped their newest, Dreamland, a week or so ago. I have been privileged enough to see both of these bands in concert and I still think back fondly to those shows to this day.

Every event that Johnny and I were going to go to this summer got cancelled (For good reason!) and it is nice to have something musical to enjoy. This especially rings true since we were supposed to see My Chemical Romance’s reunion at Riot Fest come September. Whomp whomp. I am eagerly anticipating Marilyn Manson’s new album next month and, until then, you can find me blasting Dreamland by Glass Animals which is out now!

Are any of your favorite artists releasing new music? Did coronavirus cancel any of your events? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

More OOTD Photo Shoot Pics

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More OOTD Photo Shoot Pics

Hi! Yesterday, I talked you through the styling for my In Summer, We Wear Black OOTD. I really enjoyed creating that post and it has since become one of my favorite outfits. Today, I am just going to share some additional pictures from the photo shoot because there were so many that I liked and I couldn’t limit it to one post! Check it out:

2FA5BF03-6620-4D25-BD17-2FC67A59811FB53B2606-A357-4E9B-9425-D27EF9309D6D67152003-D0E7-448A-ADDD-7CAD257BB1BB00B5C75F-2D1C-4786-82DA-74E63A2BD478D82E495F-B060-4EE9-91B1-FBFE52D580B960986B00-E6C5-4A01-ABB4-B68D778ECC0079329126-5795-4907-B45E-2E27DCA86C6F

There is seriously nothing better than when you are totally and completely feeling yourself and that is how I felt when I took these pictures. I had a blast because my mom was the photographer and the self-confidence surge was, obviously, a lot of fun too! ❤

Do you have a favorite outfit? What does your clothes say about you? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Huge Bath & Body Works Online Haul

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Huge Bath & Body Works Online Haul

Hello! One thing that I have always enjoyed doing is shopping the semi annual sales at Bath & Body Works. Never would I ever buy their products full price but when they are slashing them fifty to seventy-five percent off, why wouldn’t you stock up?! Not only did I snag some early birthday gifts for my bestie but I also was able to score some shower gels for me as well as a huge supply of foaming hand soap to get myself and Johnny through another few months of quarantine. Check it out:

B497B12F-161E-411F-85DF-559ACA55FCD79388755F-70C7-4F61-8CDF-176E7D148683FE7F6033-D5C3-4CEA-BE4B-58D6F2EBDD710D29A57C-AA83-4859-8188-606B6AEBEC81

If you aren’t hip to the glory of the foaming hand soaps from B&BW, then I highly suggest you hit up their sales and buy a few for yourself. They are easily the best hand soaps I have ever used. First of all, they smell fabulous. Second, a tiny pump of it goes a really long way. And, finally, they leave my hands feeling completely clean, totally moisturized, and smelling awesome.

Before, I was always okay with just buying drugstore brands for my shower gel and hand soap needs and would tut at the original expensive B&BW prices. But, when I discovered their semi annual sale, my life changed for the better. Over dramatic, yes. Lol, but it’s true. I love having a huge supply of smell goods in my apartment and my stock pile is guilt free because I paid a fraction of what the original cost would be.

Although it is the most fun to shop the sale in stores, I was still excited to fire up my laptop and check it out online. There is a potential for me to not like some of the scents because I couldn’t give it a whiff test but those products can easily be passed on to someone else or saved for a rainy day when I realize my hoard is ready for a restock!

I was happy to still shop B&BW’s sale in an nontraditional way and, now, I will patiently wait for their post winter price cuts so I can do it all over again! 😀

What is your favorite semi annual sale to shop? How do you save money on brand name shopping? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah