Nail Mail from Florida & The Netherlands!

It's been awhile since my last blog. I've gotten 7 new polishes since then. :-) But... I only actually paid for one!

My long time blogging & twitter friend Lynn sent me a package a few weeks ago. She sent me a DelSol color changing polish! (I also love the mouse card she sent!)

I've never owned a color changing polish. It's so cool! It changes from a super sparkly purple to a deep magenta in the sun. And as soon as you go back in the shade it goes back to purple. The color Lynn sent me is called 'After Party' I only have mobile photos, but the color change is significant! It's a super sparkly polish in person, I love it!

 DelSol After Party in the shade. 

  DelSol After Party in the sun!

Then I got another lovely surprise. My Instagram friend Maaike (Mee-ka) in The Netherlands sent me some more goodies! (This was the 1st package she sent). She felt bad it cost me so much to send her package, and that I included more than I said I would. She is so nice! She sent me so much stuff! I have to send her back something in a few months, because now I feel bad! lol. :-)

She sent me more Essence polish, some nail art polish, facial cleanser, Coconut Lip Balm, which tastes amazing! And Lipton Blueberry Muffin green tea. :-)

Essence 'That's What I Mint' & 'Hello Marshmallow'

This was the manicure I did with the Essence Polish. Pastel & Daisies! I used Winstonia Store plate 110. And Konad Special Polish in White.

I shared my manicure on Winstonia Store's Facebook page and a few days later they shared it with all of their fans! That was so neat! (You may have to click on the photo below to enlarge it),

The only nail polish I've actually purchased myself was Essie DJ Play That Song. I've been wanting it forever. It's a pretty neon purple. Of course being Essie, the formula was thin and watery, so it took 3 coats, and even then I still had some bubbles. But it's a really gorgeous color regardless.

I added stars a few days later with Winstonia Store stamping plate W107 and some Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Silver.

If you haven't already. Check out my Complete Nail Polish Collection!

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Zoya Destiny & Konad Animal Print Nails!

These turned out really pretty! I used Zoya Pixie Dust in Destiny, then put a clear coat of Seche Vite over it, (because it's texture polish) and then I stamped the animal print (cheetah?) with my Konad stamper plate M57, (and 1 more coat of Seche Vite). I love the way Destiny sparkles in the sun! I'm getting much more used to stamping now and my shorter stamper I bought from Winstonia Store helps a lot too! :-)

(I do use Amazon Associates, but not because I've made any money- because I haven't! lol! But I like that I can show a picture/link with a product when I'm blogging. Plus I do recommend for their low prices. That or Ebay!)

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Dollar Tree Crock Pot Beef Stew

This beef stew was made with Dollar Tree grocery ingredients. (Some Dollar Tree locations now have freezer aisles & canned/dry goods.) My paycheck has been a over $100.00 short lately because of the US Government Sequestration. So, I've had to come up with some cheap but filling dinner ideas.

  • Egg Noodles from Dollar Tree 12oz bag. (Only use half the bag & don't add them until the last hour).
  • 1 Package of frozen mixed veggies Steam'ables 10oz from Dollar Tree
  • 3 packages of frozen Rib Eye steak meat from Dollar Tree 3oz each. Cut into small pieces.
  • 1-2 medium sliced, diced or whole onions- your preference (The onions are not from Dollar Tree)

I mix my sauce first and whisk it together in a large bowl, then I pour it over the meat & veggies in the crock pot. Stir everything together.
  • 2 cups of Water 
  • 1 cup of Ketchup
  • 1/2 cup Soy Sauce 
  • 3 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoons of salt 
  • 1/4 teaspoon of pepper 
  • 2 tablespoons of brown sugar 
  • 1 teaspoon Goya Adobe all purpose seasoning. (Red lid)
  • 3 tablespoons of Flour (Whisk into sauce).

Directions: Cook for 7 hours on low in the crock pot. During the last hour of cooking- add the egg noodles and stir well. (This makes around 5 servings.)

You can add whatever veggies you have laying around, I had half a bag of baby carrots left over, so I put those into the stew as well.

 If you're looking for a regular Crock Pot Beef Stew recipe click here.

Other Dollar Tree related blogs: 

My Dollar Tree is Freaking Amazing!

* Everything was purchased by myself, I am not affiliated with Dollar Tree.

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Sindie Pop Lacquer: Golden Raspberries

I've wanted this color awhile! Sindie Pop Lacquer recently had a restock and Golden Raspberries was available! She also sent me a free gift of Nightshifter, which is a silvery mauve color with aqua shimmer in it. I still have to try it out. This was my first order from Sindie Pop. She packaged everything so nicely too!

Sindie Pop Golden Raspberries is a gorgeous raspberry purple color with lot's of golden shimmer and sparkles. It removed pretty easy with polish remover. This was 2 coats with 1 coat of Seche Vite topcoat.

*Golden Raspberries was purchased by myself. Nightshifter was included with my order as a free gift.

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Rat Kids!

Here's a few recent photos of some of my pets rats!


 Teddy & Templeton stayed like this on my bed, after I pet them.

 Emile using Remy as a pillow!

 Emile and Teddy and um... rat balls... lol.



Zoya, Konad & a gift from The Netherlands!

After posting about some of the Zoya summer Pixie Dusts, I went and also ordered Destiny. A pretty orange coral.

I tried out a gradient with Destiny & Miranda.

My friend Maaike (Mee-ka) on Instagram & I decided to send each other each a little package. (We both love nail polish and pet rats!) She sent me a pretty turquoise Essence Nail Polish in Let's Get Lost & Lipton strawberry cupcake tea, all the way from The Netherlands! (The tea tastes like strawberry jam!) I'm sending her a Zoya polish & some treats for her ratties.


I found some of the new L.A. Girl 3d Effect polish on eBay! I still have to swatch them and I'm planning on doing a gradient with them!

I finally got my first Konad image plate. One with a Zebra & Cheetah pattern. I've only ever used stamping plates from Winstonia Store, so I was surprised Konad's look exact to Winstonia's plates. I also got Konad special stamping polish in Black & White. And a new little stamper set from Winstonia Store.

My first Konad mani! I just stamped over my Esscense polish to test it out, so there was some tip wear, etc. My new shorter stamper is a lot easier to handle than the longer one I was using before.

I also did purple zebra nails. With China Glaze Spontaneous!

I also found a nice large plastic container to store all.... 104 of my nail polishes in. I organized the polish by brand in little plastic baggies.

I will leave off with this funny Someecard, because I just ordered polish 105 from Sindie Pop Lacquer last night, a color I've been wanting for ages, and she finally restocked! Golden Raspberries!

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Zoya Pixie Dust: Miranda, Stevie, Liberty

A few weeks ago Zoya had a free shipping deal. So I took advantage of it and ordered three colors from the new Summer 2013 PixieDust collection. I ordered Miranda, Stevie & Liberty. They are so pretty in person, matte when dry, but very sparkly.

All nail photos taken in the sunlight.
Miranda is a gorgeous fuchsia pink.

Stevie is a pretty lavender.

And Liberty is a stunning blue.

I'm going to wear Liberty this week. I do my nails once a week. Then they have to last the entire work week. (Seche Vite top coat helps regular polish last longer. Don't use a top coat on texture polish). I can tell you from using Zoya NYX before, the PixieDust wore a whole week with no chipping! I really love these new summer colors!

If you haven't already. Check out my Complete Nail Polish Collection!

*All nail polish purchased with my own money

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Immigration Update: APPROVED!

I got some great news today! An email from our immigration lawyer saying Vermont USCIS had finally processed our immigration paperwork for the removal of my husband's conditional status. It took them 5 months to process everything. (Which was better than the estimate of 8 months to 1 year we were given because they were backlogged).

He is approved! And we are done immigration for a good long while! He will get his permanent resident card in the mail soon and we won't have to renew that for quite some time. His card will be good for 10 years. (And renewing won't be half the paperwork it took to get this far!)

 Approved Yay! (Important information blurred obviously)

Below are some key blog posts documenting our entire immigration process up until now. (If you want to see all the posts you can click here: Immigration Process).

Our immigration process started back in 2008. We started doing research the year before we were married because we knew we would have to save money for the fee's.

8-20-2008: Immigration Lawyers 

12-19-2009: F.B. & I were married in the Philippines. After we were married I came back to the USA so we could start our immigration process.

01-31-2010: 1st Meeting: Immigration Lawyer

02-24-2010: Moving along in our immigration process

04-11-2010: The Waiting Game...

06-01-2010: Now we're getting somewhere!

07-23-2010: Finally completed our I-864

10-14-2010: NVC: Step 4 of 6.

01-12-2011: Immigration Update

01-19-2011: Yikes! Just 2 weeks until.... (F.B.'s Visa Interview in Manila, Philippines). 

02-03-2011: WHOO HOO! (Visa Approved!)

Busy First Week! (F.B. arrived in the USA)

03-06-2012: 1 Year in the USA!

10-10-2012: Hubby's birthday & getting immigration started again.

12-01-2012: Thanksgiving and Immigration... (Removing conditional status from F.B.'s resident card).

12-20-2012: 3 Year Anniversary! (Immigration & the Holidays)

05-09-2013: Immigration Update: Approved!

NOTE: Our lawyers Peter J. Gonzales & Shanna Stanton have changed firms. They are no longer with Kahiga Tiagha. They are now with Green and Spiegel LLC, and still located in Philadelphia.

Shannon Stanton lawyer profile on on

Peter J. Gonzales lawyer profile on


E-Books I've Read Lately.

I love to read. I read every day. Mostly on the way home from work on the train, and before I go to sleep. Reading a book before bed is how I unwind. The majority of the books I read are History, Historical Fiction, Biography or Memoirs. I do read some Fiction and Classics.

Here are some books I've finished lately and purchased for my Kindle Fire HD 8.9". I definitely recommend these! (They are also available in paper or hardback).

1. Waiting to Be Heard- Amanda Knox

Wow... I just finished this. And I am started to read it again. (I like to read books through multiple times). Talk about being in the wrong place at the wrong time. This book was so well written and brutally honest. Let me just take a quote from the book that struck me to share with you:

"The prosecution said they were certain the murder had been a group attack. Why, then, was none of my DNA or Raffaele’s DNA in Meredith’s bedroom? Their answer: because Raffaele and I had scrubbed the crime scene clean of our DNA, leaving only Guede’s. That theory gave me super powers. DNA is not something you can cherry-pick; it’s invisible. Even if I could somehow magically see DNA, there is no way I could tell one person’s DNA from another’s just by looking—no one can"

This is well worth a read or buy!

2. Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness- Susannah Cahalan

I bought this for $2.99 for my Kindle Fire HD. I had heard about it on the news before. I really liked this book. I've read it 2 times already.

Here is a brief summary from Amazon:

One day in 2009, twenty-four-year-old Susannah Cahalan woke up alone in a strange hospital room, strapped to her bed, under guard, and unable to move or speak. A wristband marked her as a “flight risk,” and her medical records—chronicling a month-long hospital stay of which she had no memory at all—showed hallucinations, violence, and dangerous instability. Only weeks earlier, Susannah had been on the threshold of a new, adult life: a healthy, ambitious college grad a few months into her first serious relationship and a promising career as a cub reporter at a major New York newspaper. Who was the stranger who had taken over her body? What was happening to her mind?

In this swift and breathtaking narrative, Susannah tells the astonishing true story of her inexplicable descent into madness and the brilliant, lifesaving diagnosis that nearly didn’t happen. A team of doctors would spend a month—and more than a million dollars—trying desperately to pin down a medical explanation for what had gone wrong. Meanwhile, as the days passed and her family, boyfriend, and friends helplessly stood watch by her bed, she began to move inexorably through psychosis into catatonia and, ultimately, toward death. Yet even as this period nearly tore her family apart, it offered an extraordinary testament to their faith in Susannah and their refusal to let her go.

Then, at the last minute, celebrated neurologist Souhel Najjar joined her team and, with the help of a lucky, ingenious test, saved her life. He recognized the symptoms of a newly discovered autoimmune disorder in which the body attacks the brain, a disease now thought to be tied to both schizophrenia and autism, and perhaps the root of “demonic possessions” throughout history.

3. January First: A Child's Descent into Madness and Her Father's Struggle to Save Her- Michael Schoefield

I love this book. I have taken it out 3-4 times from my local E-Library. Then this weekend I decided to finally buy it. Michael Schoefield comes off as an asshole to some people, but to me he comes across as a father who is willing to do ANYTHING for his child.

Here is a brief summary from Amazon:

Michael Schofield’s daughter January is at the mercy of her imaginary friends, except they aren’t the imaginary friends that most young children have; they are hallucinations. And January is caught in the conflict between our world and their world, a place she calls Calalini.  Some of these hallucinations, like “24 Hours,” are friendly and some, like “400 the Cat” and “Wednesday the Rat,” bite and scratch her until she does what they want.  They often tell her to scream at strangers, jump out of buildings, and attack her baby brother. 

At six years old, January Schofield, “Janni,” to her family, was diagnosed with schizophrenia, one of the worst mental illnesses known to man.  What’s more, schizophrenia is 20 to 30 times more severe in children than in adults and in January’s case, doctors say, she is hallucinating 95 percent of the time that she is awake. Potent psychiatric drugs that would level most adults barely faze her.

(I do use Amazon Associates, but not because I've made any money- because I haven't! lol! But I like that I can show a picture/link with a product when I'm blogging. Plus I do recommend for their low prices. That or Ebay!)


More Lush goodies, a talk about deoderant & nail mail!

My 2nd Lush Cosmetics order finally arrived. (My 1st Lush experience). I had to get more of that citrus soap that smells like lemon drops (Sexy Peel). I also got facial soap (Fresh Farmacy) & a herbal deodorant (The Greeench). They also sent me a sample of demon in the dark soap. It smells like mint, it's yummy!

Let's talk deodorant. Before my job relocated to Center City in early 2010, I used to drive to work. It took 10-15 minutes. Now I have to commute on the train for 45min to 1 hour. Not to mention all the walking and anxiety of commuting. And the air not working sometimes on the train when it's hot out! I started having embarrassing issues with deodorant failing... I never had this problem before when I just used to drive to work! Arrgh!

Below you can see just how many different deoderants I've tried....

The Crystal worked for a little while. Then I guess I became immune to it. Tom's... doesn't last all day. Regular Dove and Degree same thing. I was using clinical protection Mitchum and that worked. I just switched over to Dove clinical protection when I ran out of Mitchum. That's been working pretty well, but it's expensive and I don't like the scent too much. That's why I decided to give the Lush deodorant a try. I'll update this post after I've worn it a week and let you know how it holds up!

Edited 5-10-13: The Lush deodorant held up pretty okay. It kept away odor, but it was not so good at being an anti-antiperspirant. Still, it is something I would continue to use. I want to try their T'eo bar.

And.... nail mail! Purple is my favorite color. It was even included in our wedding & reception. So you would think I would have more purple nail polishes, but I really don't. I have more blue and aqua nail polish. I ordered these two pretty polishes on eBay!

China Glaze: Spontaneous. And Color Club: Wild at Heat.

The holographic effect is not very strong on this Color Club. But the purple color was a shade I really liked. So it's pretty regardless. It dries fairly quick. This is 3 coats, no top coat. When I removed it though, it did stain the skin around my fingers...

This is China Glaze Spontaneous. It's just the shade of purple I've been wanting. Not to light and not too dark. Kind of a grape candy color. The formula is great. I just needed two coats. 

I used Sally Hansen Insta-dri in Silver Sweep to stamp. (I really recommend Insta-Dri for stamping, it's thick & dries fast and doesn't smear.) I stamped with my Winstonia Store plates. I have a lot of trouble stamping full designs though. Pictured is my right hand. My left hand does not look as good, lol. You really need a lot of patience when stamping. I used Seche Vite top coat once I was done.

If you haven't already. Check out my Complete Nail Polish Collection!
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