Tag Archives: memories

If The Slipper Fits: Minnetonka Edition

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If The Slipper Fits: Minnetonka Edition

Hello! My adorable mom was a sneaky Santa, as she presented me with a “decoy” (As she called it) shoe box this Christmas before gifting me with the L’Artiste sandals that I had been drooling over. What was in my decoy box, you might ask? An oh so comfy pair of moccasin style slippers by Minnetonka! I’m not going to lie, I was a bit disappointed when I opened my slippers and they weren’t the sandals. But, after testing them out once I got home, I have practically lived in them and I can’t help but smile at my mom’s little prank every time I put them on. Lol, check it out:

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When I was a teenager, I got a pair of Minnetonka moccasins that I still own to this day. I can’t seem to throw them out, even though they are riddled with holes now because I would wear them literally all the time. But, with these new slippers, I definitely might be more inclined to pitch my waterlogged old faithfuls since I now have an upgrade. Despite them being house shoes, they still have a thick rubber sole so I know I can have them on when walking to take the trash out or going to the gas station drive thru.

I was a bit worried that the faux fur lining in the moccasins might be too warm for me but they are just right – especially in my cold apartment! I love my slippers because I have never owned a pair in my life and they are something that I wouldn’t have bought for myself. My mom is basically the cutest person ever and I just adore the fact that she knew exactly what my reaction would be when I opened my Minnetonkas but gifted them to me anyways because she also knew that I was going to warm up to them immediately. The Sneaky Santa award most definitely goes to her! ❤

Have you ever received a decoy gift? What was the decoy prezzie covering up? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Super Happy Fun Times

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Super Happy Fun Times

Hello!!! Last weekend was a wonderful one for me and, boy, did I need it. I had been feeling nothing short of blah for the past several weeks and now I know that the remedy for the blues is some snuggles, creating new holiday traditions, and Zoom dates to put a spring back in my step. Rinse and repeat for best results!

Last weekend, I was so happy because I got to babysit my sweet niece, Valerie, on Saturday night. I had been counting down the days because the last time I saw Val Gal was on Thanksgiving. Johnny and I were not able to participate in the holiday with my family and it was very hard seeing Val on the driveway and not being able to hold her. So, trust and believe, I was ready for all of the snugs.

Val and I had so much fun reading books, petting all of her animal friends (she loves their family pets!), playing Peek-A-Boo, and watching Trolls. Even though whenever I would sing along with the songs Val would go “NOOOOO” haha I didn’t realize I was that tone deaf! Being an aunt is the best thing ever and I am eagerly counting down the days until Christmas so I can spoil my niece and nephew rotten!

The weekend fun did not end there because on Sunday, I was able to Zoom with one of my dear friends, Scott. I have been a friend to him and his family for over six years now and I really miss being able to see them regularly and go out for coffee and lunch. Scott and I chatted for over an hour about anything and everything and it was so refreshing to gab, laugh, reminisce, and, of course, look forward to when it’s safe so we can all see each other again. ❤

Afterwards, Johnny and I ordered Pizza Hut pizza and settled in to watch his favorite holiday movie, The Muppets Christmas Carol. Believe it or not, I don’t think I’ve actually ever seen the full movie because when I was younger the part with Marley and Marley used to scare me SO bad (This humors Johnny to no end!). I am proud to say, I was able to get through that part without incident as an adult and we both enjoyed our afternoon viewing/pizza party so much. We decided that we should watch it every year along with Elf – even though Johnny fell asleep when we watched it!

It is so easy to be bummed out about the state of the world right now due to the coronavirus pandemic. But, sometimes, all it takes is a little holiday magic to get yourself back to baseline. I can attest to that firsthand. 🙂

What is your favorite holiday movie? How do you like to spoil your loved ones during the holiday season? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Holiday Haul: My Friend Edition

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Holiday Haul: My Friend Edition

Hello! It is a very rare thing for me to take time off from work. Mainly because I love my job but also having no paid time off, lol. However, I have taken two weeks off so I can safely celebrate Christmas with my family. I have had such fun enjoying the holiday season with my clients. From online shopping for the perfect presents for each of them to decking out their homes with Christmas decor – it really doesn’t get much better than that!

On my last week of work before my holiday vacation, one of my dear friends who I have the joy of working with bestowed these beautiful gifts onto me. Check it out:

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My pal and I love to color together and I am tickled that he selected a coloring book and colored pencils just for me. I am so excited to bring the Buggie Buddies book with me the next time I watch my niece because she loves stickers and creating masterpieces with crayons. The Malley’s Chocolates are delicious and tastes like a fancy Heath Bar, which is perfect because that’s one of my favorite candies. I also love the Christmas card that came with my gifts – it is absolutely adorable!

Nothing is more special to me than the gifts that my sweet friends have chosen. Honestly, the selection above is already my favorite gift and it isn’t even Christmas yet. I know how much thought and care went into picking these gifts out – from the carefully wrapped package to the contents inside that are filled with such happy memories. I know my friend is going to love the present I got for him and I cannot wait to call him on Christmas day when he opens it! ❤

What is one of your favorite gifts that you have received? Is there a gift that you’re really excited about giving this year? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Rita Rites

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Rita Rites

Hello!! I like to think that I got my knack for writing from my grandma. Not only was she a gifted musician but she loved to write too and had a monthly newsletter called “Rita Rites” that was distributed in her church and mailed to her friends. In fact, when I was younger, we would both sit by the computer and she would read her handwritten draft of Rita Rites out loud to me while I typed it. I would always look forward to receiving the end results of our handiwork in the mail! In a way, it was kind of like her own blog, filled with jokes, fun facts, stories, and charming insights.

I was proud to be able to help my grandma with her newsletter and even prouder when my mom accidentally called my blog my “Rita Rites” the other day. I considered it a high compliment! From a young age, I was exposed to all of the joys of writing and I definitely have my grandma to thank for that. Her creativity, dedication, and the fact that I can never recall her using the same blurb twice continues to inspire me to this day.

I loved being able to help my grandma with Rita Rites and I miss her terribly. But, thanks to my mom misnaming my blog, I have felt so close to my grandma every time I’ve sat down to write since. Fond memories of an afternoon with my grandma working on the newsletter and then sitting down to a delicious dinner with my whole family have flooded my thoughts and it makes me happy. I think my grandma would be extremely proud of my blog and that makes me happy too. 🙂

Even though everything pretty much sucks right now, writing has helped keep me sane. And, whenever I struggle to come up with a post for the day, I think of my grandma’s dedication to her craft and everything just kind of flows. Whether you just started writing or have been doing it for years, keep going! Great friends and some of the best memories will be around to greet you at every corner. I am so thankful to the support of the blogosphere and my loved ones when it comes to my blog and Lil Red will always be here to help support all of you too!

What inspired you to start blogging? How long have you been writing for? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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

Getting Into The Holiday Spirit

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Getting Into The Holiday Spirit

Hello!! Normally, the holiday season is an uber exciting time to get together with the people you love most and celebrate. However, with COVID-19 still on the up and up, these next few holidays might feel more daunting than anything. Thanksgiving and Christmas will be different this year but different doesn’t mean bad so try getting more into the holiday spirit with these ideas:

Host A Food Drive:

It’s nice to remember how fortunate we are during the holiday season but it’s even better to think about those who have less than you. So, how about hosting a food drive with your friend group or family? Choose some of your local food banks or homeless shelters to help support and see how big your donation haul can get. Offer a small reward to the person who collected the most goods and turn a collection drive into a yearly tradition.

Mystery Gifts:

Due to COVID, it is much easier and safer to online shop for holiday gifts instead of going into the store. A fun way to recognize this would be to send mystery gifts to your friends or family. No names, no cards – just a Zoom meeting after all of the gifts are received to see if anyone can guess who sent them theirs. Set your own rules like a spending limit or if hints can be given and see how well all of you know each other by sending off surprise gifts!

Arts & Crafts:

Having an abundance of time at home is perfect for trying your hand at some holiday themed crafts. Whether that be creating hand print turkeys with your little ones or having a boozy Christmas ornament decorating sesh with the girls, a craft night is a perfect way to get together and try something new. Have a Zoom meeting all together or social distance appropriately and, who knows, maybe you’ll find a new favorite hobby.

Countdown Memories:

Sadly, a lot of families will not be able to get together this holiday season and that sucks – for lack of a better word. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t participate in one of the most loved holiday activities – reminiscing on holidays of past. Create a slideshow or presentation of your top holiday memories complete with pictures, videos, or goofy memes to help better describe your favorite times. Send them off to those you hold dear and enjoy hearing about everyone else’s most treasured holiday memories.

Sponsor A Family:

The holiday season should, ideally, be a magical time for everyone but, unfortunately, that is not the case. If there is a family in your community that you know is struggling, lend a helping hand. Leave a surprise donation of toys, gift cards, food, and anything else that you think they would need to better enjoy their day. You might be able to make it the best holiday yet for someone who needs it the most.

How do you get into the holiday spirit? What are some of your favorite holiday memories? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Lisa Frank X Glamour Dolls Eyeshadow Swatch In Stargazing

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Lisa Frank X Glamour Dolls Eyeshadow Swatch In Stargazing

Hi! Back when I was in grade school a million years ago, it was all about all Lisa Frank everything. From her colorful designs, lots of shimmer, and cute animals adorning school supplies and book bags, it was impossible to not get into the Lisa Frank hype. It has been forever since I have thought about that brand but memories of my favorite LF notebooks came rushing back when I found a Lisa Frank eyeshadow in the hand me downs my sister gave me.

This eyeshadow in Stargazing is a special nod to Lisa Frank’s signature style and it also happens to be one of my fave colors. So, take a look at some pics and let’s discuss:

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^^^ The first heart is the eyeshadow applied wet and the second one is applied dry.

Everything about this eyeshadow is so fab to me. From the punchy purple and silver packaging to the glittering hue of shooting stars once you open the compact, this is Lisa Frank to the T. When I first saw this eyeshadow in my hand me down haul, I was shocked because I had no idea that a collaboration between Lisa Frank and Glamour Dolls even happened. But, now that I see it, my only question is why the heck it didn’t happen sooner!

This eyeshadow also couldn’t have come soon enough because I was running dangerously low on my go to bronze shade from The Body Shop. Out of all of the eyeshadows that I swatched these past few days, I can definitely say that I will be wearing this Stargazing hue the most. I just know I’m going to love it and, I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s even prettier than my old TBS fave seen here. 😀

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Bring on all of the fun of early 2000’s Lisa Frank with this amazing eyeshadow!

Did you have any Lisa Frank gear back in the day? What did it look like? 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

Lil Red & The Best Anniversary Ever

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Lil Red & The Best Anniversary Ever

Hello! On September first, Johnny and I celebrated our one year anniversary of dating. This past weekend, we celebrated officially by the most wonderful surprise that Johnny had been working on: A specially prepared dinner by a chef friend that I got to choose.

Originally, I wanted something bold like Pad Thai or Indian food but Johnny is not a fan of either so I went with an old favorite of fettuccine Alfredo, garlic bread, and a salad. This was sure to go over well with the both of us and on Saturday I was banished from the apartment while our mystery guest and Johnny got to work.

For a few hours I visited my parents and brother as well as their next door neighbor, Alice. But, the entire time, I was eagerly awaiting a text from Johnny to tell me I could come back home. I had butterflies in my stomach the whole time I was away and I was freaking giddy when I was allowed to start heading over.

I opened the door to our apartment and was greeted by the most delicious aroma of garlic bread you could ever imagine, a cleaned off kitchen table, and our friend Jimmy standing in the kitchen! Jimmy plays in The Outside Voices with Johnny and is an exceptional chef so Johnny hired him to prepare our anniversary feast.

I was literally speechless when I saw Jimmy because I had no idea who Johnny was talking about this whole time. Between that, my kitchen table being cleaned, and Johnny looking so damn fine I was completely floundering, lol!

Around seven, our meal was ready and Jimmy poured us both a healthy glass of wine and left us to begin our celebrations. Saying our dinner was to die for was an understatement. The fettuccine Alfredo surpassed anything I’ve ever had before (Take that, Olive Garden!). The rosemary garlic bread was so crisp and had enough garlic to kill a vampire but that’s exactly how I like it. And, finally, the salad was gorgeous – fresh greens with mozzarella cheese, blackberries, sliced almonds, onions, and an olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing. Can you say, YUM?!

We ate like royalty and immediately after, we retired into our comfy clothes to begin the relaxation portion of our celebration. All night, Johnny and I listened to music, poorly did imitations of our favorite TV characters, and laughed. It was the best day of my life.

Johnny’s anniversary date night was one of the nicest things that anyone has ever done for me and I am never going to forget it. The following morning I told him I thought I gained a pound from dinner but that food baby was just a small price to pay for the most beautiful day! ❤

How did you celebrate an anniversary this year? How about a birthday? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Scent Memories

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Scent Memories

Hello! Ever since moving into my apartment, the foaming hand soaps from Bath & Body Works have been a staple for my kitchen and bathroom sinks. I love all of the delicious fragrances and how clean and moisturized my hands feel after each wash. Recently, I had a huge online haul from B&BW and I have been enjoying testing out all of the different scents.

A couple of days ago, I ran out of soap in my bathroom and began using the Orange Sunrise option seen below:

I pumped the soap into my hands and I don’t really know what I was expecting – maybe a Creamsicle like scent? But, I took a whiff and was nearly blown over by a scent memory. Do you ever get those? When you smell something that takes you back to when you first experienced an amazing or nasty aroma?

Luckily for me, the Orange Sunrise soap wasn’t a sickening scent memory but quite the opposite. Because, holy cow, this soap smells exactly like the orange bath beads that used to be sold at The Body Shop. In case my fellow nineties kids don’t remember bath beads, they were basically like little jelly spheres filled with scented and moisturizing oil to add into your bath.

When my siblings and I were little, my mom used to take us to The Body Shop all the time and all I wanted were the bath beads. I loved the green ones but the orange Satsuma beads were my favorites. I have so many memories of bath times with those beads and squishing them with my fingers and toes and letting the delicious aroma wash over me.

For a second when I first pumped the B&BW soap into my hands, I was right back in The Body Shop with my mom filling up a huge bag of bath beads to take home. It was one of the best scent memories I’ve ever had and I am so happy to be taken back to that moment that I had almost forgotten every time I wash my hands! ❤

Have you had a scent memory recently? Where can I find bath beads? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah