ClassPass has launched in Portland!

ClassPass Portland Review // A Well Crafted Party

ClassPass in Portland—My First ClassPass Class:

(Say that ten times fast!)

ClassPass is a fitness membership program that allows members to try several different types of classes and studios in the area. The ClassPass in Portland just launched mid-November and I was asked to try out the membership this month. Just when I was trying to push myself to work on my fitness more this opportunity landed in my inbox… I couldn’t say no even if I wanted to!

I’ve not been thrilled about group fitness classes in the past and was very nervous reserving my first class. But, the experience was awesome and I can’t wait to go again. My goal this month testing out ClassPass is to try as many different studios as I can fit into my schedule both to see how the process goes and to try out new-to-me fitness styles.

Candlelight Yoga at The Art of Movement // A Well Crafted Party

 

I signed up for Candlelight Yoga at The Art of Movement on SE Divsion in Portland. The later start time was perfect for my work schedule and the idea of doing yoga surrounded by candlelight sounded incredibly relaxing. It was an all-levels class which worried me at first because I am most definetely a beginner. I had nothing at all to worry about. The instructor was fabulous about suggesting (and showing) different moves that might be better for beginners and then working her way up for the class members who needed more of a challenge. She also took care in suggesting different moves to avoid back pain, wrist pain, knee pain… etc.

Checking in was a breeze. Since it was my first time at that location I had to sign a standard release, but my name was on the list and I didn’t have to explain that I was part of ClassPass.

About ClassPass:

  • ClassPass membership costs $99 a month.
  • ClassPass is currently located in NYC, Boston, San Francisco, LA, Chicago, Washington D.C., Seattle, and San Diego.
  • You can workout in ANY city on ClassPass.  We just announced ClassPass Flex (read more here!).
  • It is an alternative to a gym membership.
  • Allows you UNLIMITED classes at participating studios. You are limited to 3 classes per studio per month.  However, once the next month starts, you can visit that favorite studio again for 3 times!
  • Allows you to build a workout routine full of variety visiting studios of all types (barre, yoga, pilates, indoor cycling, bootcamps, martial arts, strength training and more!).
  • Provides studios with a marketing platform to get their name and classes out there to a group of fitness enthusiasts actively looking for new classes in their area.
  • Helps studios focus on what they love to do–teach–while ClassPass helps them grow their business!

More About ClassPass:

  • The ClassPass website is beautiful and allows for you to schedule your classes pretty instanaeously. I did have problems trying to schedule my first class, but switched from my Google Chrome browser to Firefox and it worked great. It was likely a small glitch, but if you have problems signing up for a class I’d just suggest switching browsers.
  • Like many local classes, cancelling without enough notice comes with a fee.
  • Going on vacation? You can put your membership on hold. You’ll be charged a $19 hold fee to hold for the month, but you’ll be able to take 1 class that month as well.
  • There is no commitment for the membership. However, if you do deactivate your account and then want to reactivate there is a $79 reactivation fee.
  • Read even more at the ClassPass FAQ page!

A big thank you goes out to ClassPass for giving me the opportunity to try out their services. I will try some more classes and post again about my experience near the end of my month!

Dealing with Change

Thoughts on Change // A Well Crafted Party

Change… it happens whether we want it to or not. How we handle change says a lot about how successful we will be in life.

“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” – John F. Kennedy

If I were to take a test about how well I handle change then I’d pass with flying colors.

In most cases, I’d say I embrace change. Nothing in my home is placed permanently; everything has to be easy to move on a whim because I enjoying changing the way things look often.  I seriously have never had the same hairstyle twice since I have been able to enjoy choosing my own hair styles. Heck, I don’t even like eating the same meal two weeks in a row, much less as leftovers the next day. Thank goodness my husband likes leftovers.

See, you might even say I like change. I should be a total success at this whole life thing, right?

Thoughts on Change // A Well Crafted Party

The one thing that all of the changes that I like have in common is the fact that I have control over these changes. I like change that I have control over. I will even CHOOSE change to exert some control when all of life’s changes fly at me. (See the impromptu new hair-do for example!)

Thoughts on Change // A Well Crafted Party

This year has been awesome. It has been challenging. It has been incredibly sad and it has been deliriously happy. But, holy crap, it has been a year of change.

I’m working through the changes one moment at a time. Afterall…

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” – George Bernard Shaw

I’m also trying to encourage myself to be open to becoming the change because…

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” – Barack Obama

And…

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Tell me, how do you deal with change? Do you feel you are open to change?

 

 

Fitness: Making Time for Self-Care & Yoga

Self Care and Yoga // A Well Crafted Party

Disclaimer: I received an opportunity to work with YogaOutlet.Com on this post. Thank you for reading posts that help support this blog. All opinions and thoughts are my own. Don’t forget to check out the reader discount below!

Since going from working on my feet full-time to working on my rear full-time (desk job) I’ve noticed a steep decline in overall body health. Not just weight gain, though there has been some of that, but just how I feel. I don’t sleep as well, I get tired more often, and I am sore constantly. Like most people out there, I’m not making time for exercise. I have plenty of excuses, but truly, it is just that other things are taking priority right now.

I have continued to let my body get more and more worked up—all they while telling myself I didn’t have time to exercise in the day. You won’t ever hear me argue with anyone who says they don’t have time to exercise. I understand it. Working three jobs, being a mom, wife, friend, sibling, and daughter… well, lets just say I didn’t even have enough time to do any of those things very well.

However, now I’ve come to realize that me not taking a little extra time to stretch at my desk, talk a long walk, or even do a little yoga, is actually eating into my time even more.  I began to feel the affects of no sleep and constant pain seep into my work. The idea of sitting on the ground playing blocks with my child sounds tedious, exhausting and painful. Staying up longer than 8PM in the evenings to hang out with my husband, or help put my son to bed, became a trial. Though, going to bed at 8PM never helped me sleep more than 5 hours at night anyways. Well, you get the idea.

The moment has come that I prioritize exercise. It is about self-care. It is about maximizing the quality of life. And, well, it is about damn time.

Prioritize Exercise // A Well Crafted Party— Life is a party, celebrate it!

Stretching my schedule for more self-care in the form of yoga

A long while back I had a doctor recommend yoga to me for health issues. I nodded my head, and even went through with buying a few online yoga downloads and hitting a class or two… but, I only actually tried it a few times before giving it up. Right when the “Come to the Treadmill” moment happened for me I received an email from YogaOutlet.com sharing about their Summer Yoga Sale happening this August. I was more than a little excited to work with them and order a few items from their website.

After perusing the site for a bit I landed on the idea of trying out yoga at home again. Getting to the gym is almost impossible for me these days, and doing yoga at home means my kiddo can do some poses along with me. Quality time with kiddo and great self-care combined? WINNING. I decided to order the Gaiam Yoga for Beginners Kit that comes with a yoga mat, strap, block and beginner yoga disk. And, because ALL of that was less than $30 I decided to throw in the Gaiam AM/PM Yoga for Beginners DVD. I like the idea of doing a short bit of yoga in the morning to energize myself, and different poses in the evening to sort of unwind. And, because I had no where to store a bunch of yoga stuff, I bought a nifty little bag that keeps most of it all contained for me and waiting right by my bedroom door ready to head out to the living room for use.

(I have friends who swear by the Gaiam Yoga Back Care DVD… so, if I end up enjoying these DVDs and using them more than a handful of times, then I’m adding that one to the list. I’ll try to update this post after I’ve done the DVDs more than just a few times and let you know how they are working out.)

I haven’t been very consistent yet, but having my yoga mat ready to go has helped. I’m hoping to get even more consistent so I can soon justify buying some of their really cute yoga apparel!

A Well Crafted Party readers can get a one-time 15% discount at YogaOutlet.com by using the promo code “bridgepose” at check-out on your first purchase! Orders above $49 get free shipping as well. 

Have you tried at home yoga before? If so, what are your tips for keeping it consistent? Which videos do you like?

Beauty: Nudes of Late Summer

Disclaimer: Affiliate links are used in this post. Purchases made from affiliate links help support this blog at no additional cost to you. Product mentioned in this post were given with purpose of experiencing the product. No posts were promised in return. All opinions are my own. Thank you for reading and engaging with posts that help keep this blog (and blogger) running!

Late Summer Nudes // A Well Crafted Party Late Summer Nudes // A Well Crafted Party

While I am not quite ready for Summer to be over yet… I’m also yearning for the cooler temperatures and warmer color palettes that Fall brings with it. Each year, as late summer comes rolling in, I start gravitating to more and more whites, light pinks, and nudes. It must be something about Labor Day heading my way (although, I’ve never been one to follow the no white after labor day rule!) or just the HOT August heat begging for lighter colors.

Outfit planning lately has incorporated as many whites, pinks, nudes, and golds as possible. I spent most my life hating yellow gold to only want it on everything I own now days. Am I just getting old or really falling for that trend machine that dictates everyone’s tastes? (Anyone else remember Josie & the Pussycats?)

Late Summer Nudes // A Well Crafted Party

Anyways, lately I’ve been digging on the nude collection of nail polishes from Crabtree & Evelyn paired with the high-shine liquid lipstick pens from Mally Beauty.

More about the Crabtree & Evelyn Nud-est Collection: I liked these polishes because they are easier on the wallet than some other brands (approximately $6) and go on easy with great color. I can NEVER keep nail polish on long… but, these lasted me longer than some other brands. I also liked how the different colors from the collection went well together. I’m forever stuck in the paint one fingernail different trend. The Nud-est Collection has Alabaster (creamy ivory with a bit of shimmer), Peaches & Cream (peachy pink), Almond (opaque nude), and Mocha (warm creamy light brown with shimmer).

More about Mally Beauty High-Shine Liquid Lipstick Pens: Typically I don’t go for high shine lipsticks due to the hair stickage problem that sometimes happen. Lately though I’ve been wearing my hair pulled back for work and pairing it with a pretty bare face. (Sleep time is greater than makeup/hair time currently.) The pretty shine of these pretty pink shades is perfect for a natural look with a touch of polish. I’ve been wearing my Blossom lipstick daily!

Outfit details: 

  • Shoes // American Eagle via Payless – These cut out oxfords are seriously my favorite new shoes (though, sadly, I don’t see them online anymore! similar here) My husband says they look like vests for my feet though.
  • Cropped cream slacks via Ann Taylor (last season)
  • White sheer tank via Anthropologie (three seasons ago)
  • Cardigan via Target (a million years ago)
  • Gold bracelet via Old Navy (in store only but it is the only thing I got so far this season! similar here)

Do you like wearing more nudes as the Summer is ending or perhaps something else? Comment below!

Curvy Girl Style: Sun Safe Fashion Pt. 3

7 Days of Sun Safe Style with Summer Skin // A Well Crafted Party

 

Right after my skin cancer diagnosis I had the opportunity to meet the owner and creator of the sun safe fashion line SummerSkinSummer Kramer (yep, that is her name!) is seriously such an inspirational powerhouse of a woman that has really made a beautiful brand of clothing that can also help protect you. I was fortunate enough to be able to sample one of her creations— the Endless Summer Scarf. The Endless Summer Scarf is just too much fun because it can be worn so many different ways. I got the scarf the week before my surgery and had fun creating 7 Different Days of SummerSkin Style for my Instagram feed. Over the next couple of Curvy Girl Style posts I’ll be sharing some of my favorite outfits from that week! Check out all the styles I did by looking up#mysummerskin on Instagram! Check out my summer casual outfit post and my work wear posts to see other ways I styled my scarf!


Today I’m actually sharing TWO different looks I styled with the Endless Summer Scarf... each one styles the scarf in a totally different way. One outfit features the scarf as a shirt. I layered on the sunscreen and donned one of my favorite sun hats to help protect my shoulders and arms. The other outfit features the scarf as a skirt!

Styling Sun Protective Clothing // A Well Crafted Party Styling Sun Protective Clothing // A Well Crafted Party Styling Sun Protective Clothing // A Well Crafted Party Styling Sun Protective Clothing // A Well Crafted Party

Beauty: Face Care Tips for Ladies Dealing with Redness

Skin Cancer Awareness // Deciding to go to the Dermatologist from A Well Crafted Party

You add in a good instagram filter or two on me and you can’t really tell that my skin has many marks from past acne break outs and is overall just kind of red.

I used hard core cleaners when I was younger to deal with some really gnarly acne breakouts. Since I’ve gotten older (and have had much more on my to-do lists) I’ve fallen off of the skin-care boat entirely. I am TERRIBLE at washing my face daily. I will usually rinse with water at the end of the day and sometimes wash my face with any old soap or face wash in the shower in the morning. And, daily moisturizer?? Forget about it.

Everything changed after visiting the Aveda Institute for my complimentary facial as a part of the Portland Fashion Week Style Collective. I wrote a little bit about my experience of the facial and how it led me to visit my dermatologist a while ago… but, wanted to share a few face-care tips I learned as well!

Face-Care Tips for Ladies Dealing with Redness

One of the first things that they asked me in my facial was what I believed my skin was like… was it sensitive? oily? dry? Because of the bad acne of my youth and dry and oily spots on my skin, I’ve always labeled my skin as combination skin in heavy need of acne treatment. Well, evidently… like most things in life, skin changes over time! Those same products that worked for me when I was a teenager don’t work for me now. One of the first things I learned from my facial was that my skin is actually pretty sensitive and not so much oily/dry,  but its just dealing with all the crap I’m throwing at it the best way it can! (This is not the facialists words… but, rather what I got from the discussion.) The Aveda student and teacher both gave me similar tips about my skin-care routine to help deal with my skin’s redness. They include:

  1. Use cool to luke warm water to wash your face. What!? I’ve always used HOT water to wash my face… I want it to be CLEAN, right? Well… what I was doing was irritating my skin! Since my facial I’ve turned the temp down when washing my face. My skin feels a lot less rubbery and tight and looks less red already and I’ve only been doing this for a little while now.
  2. Stay away from harsh cleansers. She told me to stay away from the harsh acne treatments and face washes. Instead, use a face wash labeled for sensitive skin.
  3. Use green products. Now, I’m not talking about green as in good for the environment. I’m talking about the color green. She suggested that when I use concealer I go for a green concealer to help neutralize the red color in my face. My new sensitive skin face wash also happens to be green. I’m currently using one from Neutrogena… although, after it is gone I’m going to splurge on the kind from Aveda because while this one is pretty good, it still has some of the harsher cleansers that I was recommended to stay away from.
  4. Moisturize Daily. Urgh…. why am I so bad at this one? I want my skin to look good when I’m 60, but still can’t manage to swipe on some moisturizer! I’ve gotten much better about this since my skin cancer diagnosis because I’m now applying a moisturizer with SPF 50 nearly every day. I’d like to also get in the habit of moisturizing at night as well.
  5. Drink more water. Evidently this helps hydrate your skin from the inside out!

What tips have you heard for skin-care? Comment below and share the wealth!

Curvy Girl Style: Work Attire Sun Safe Fashion Pt. 2

7 Days of Sun Safe Style with Summer Skin // A Well Crafted Party

 

Right after my skin cancer diagnosis I had the opportunity to meet the owner and creator of the sun safe fashion line SummerSkinSummer Kramer (yep, that is her name!) is seriously such an inspirational powerhouse of a woman that has really made a beautiful brand of clothing that can also help protect you. I was fortunate enough to be able to sample one of her creations— the Endless Summer Scarf. The Endless Summer Scarf is just too much fun because it can be worn so many different ways. I got the scarf the week before my surgery and had fun creating 7 Different Days of SummerSkin Style for my Instagram feed. Over the next couple of Curvy Girl Style posts I’ll be sharing some of my favorite outfits from that week! Check out all the styles I did by looking up#mysummerskin on Instagram!


 

Sun Protetive Work Attire with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

Last week I shared an easy, casual outfit perfect for a day by the river or out at the Farmer’s market. Today I’m sharing my favorite work outfit from the week. After reading about and seeing the image of a truck driver’s face and the way the sun damaged the side of the face with the most exposure I became much more aware of how much I drive how much sun my face and arm is getting while driving. I often don’t plan on being outside for long when I run out the door for a long day of work, so I don’t really think to put on a hat or extra sun protection. The Endless Summer Scarf has been a great accessory for me during my drives. So much so that I tend to just leave it folded up in my car when I am not incorporating it into an outfit. It covers the side of my face that the sun hits along with my shoulder. Then, when I’m done driving, I just pull it down to make a cute accessory to my work attire.

Sun Protetive Work Attire with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

Sun Protetive Work Attire with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

 

Outfit details: Shoes // Christian Sirano for Payless (This pump is actually on clearance RIGHT NOW– not an affiliate, just thought you might wanna know!),  Skirt // Black Pencil Skirt via Target a few years ago, Tank // Target a few years ago, Necklace // Lucky Brand last Fall, Scarf // Endless Summer Scarf 

Do you protect your skin while driving? If so, how? Comment below!

Curvy Girl Style: Sun Safe Fashion with Summer Skin Pt. 1

7 Days of Sun Safe Style with Summer Skin // A Well Crafted Party

Right after my skin cancer diagnosis I had the opportunity to meet the owner and creator of the sun safe fashion line SummerSkin. Summer Kramer (yep, that is her name!) is seriously such an inspirational powerhouse of a woman that has really made a beautiful brand of clothing that can also help protect you. I was fortunate enough to be able to sample one of her creations— the Endless Summer Scarf. The Endless Summer Scarf is just too much fun because it can be worn so many different ways. I got the scarf the week before my surgery and had fun creating 7 Different Days of SummerSkin Style for my Instagram feed. Over the next couple of Curvy Girl Style posts I’ll be sharing some of my favorite outfits from that week! Check out all the styles I did by looking up #mysummerskin on Instagram!

So, my first favorite is actually the first outfit I put together. It is perfect for an easy summer day at the beach. Casual, cool, but still protected!

Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

Outfit details: Hat —Target // White T-Shirt —Target // Bracelets: 1 home made from old shoe straps and the red leather braided bracelet is a favorite from Flourish Leather // Shoes— Payless // Boyfriend Jeans— Old Navy // Scarf: Endless Summer Scarf from SummerSkin in White

Sunday Snapshots: Independence Weekend, New Do, & Traveling Oregon

Sunday Snapshots Dosha Salon // A Well Crafted Party

Having family visit for this fun three day weekend has just been amazing. And, even though most of us have been working hard trying to get over an icky Summer cold… we have been having a great holiday weekend. Of course, any weekend that starts with 3 hours of my enjoying alone time being pampered at the salon is going to be a good weekend.

After really wanting to go blond for a while Dosha salon sent me an email sharing a fantastic 50% off special for July 4th. Seriously, if you like Dosha then you want to get on their email club list. I’m always getting great deals through it! (Not sponsored- just like a good deal!)

Platinum Blonde // A Well Crafted Party Platinum Blonde // A Well Crafted Party

4th of July Toddler Style // A Well Crafted Party

Anyways, Friday morning was spent getting pampered at the salon while the family got everything ready for a potluck holiday lunch with friends. After playing at the park and eating lots of great food we had fun with a few sparklers at home and hit the hay. Kiddo still isn’t a fan of the loud bang of fireworks, so some major cuddling was happening as well.

Travel Oregon- Netarts, OR // A Well Crafted Party Travel Oregon- Netarts, OR // A Well Crafted Party Travel Oregon- Netarts, OR // A Well Crafted Party

Saturday was spent traveling Oregon. We started by touring the Tillamook Cheese Factory and heading out to the beach for an easy afternoon. We went out to Netarts, Oregon where we found a small little beach to sit and enjoy the ocean for a while. I don’t know if there is anything as restorative to me than the ocean. The sky in Oregon was brilliant yesterday and made for some great photographs. When I went to post one on Instagram my feed was filled with local friends posting photos of the sky as well!

Travel Oregon- Netarts Bay The Schooner Restaurant // A Well Crafted Party

sundaysnapshots-Saturday03 Travel Oregon- Netarts Bay The Schooner Restaurant // A Well Crafted Party Travel Oregon- Netarts Bay The Schooner Restaurant // A Well Crafted Party

We stopped by The Schooner in Netarts for dinner and sat at a HUGE outdoor table for a meal. The food was decent, but the presentation was awesome. A lot of thought had been put into the presentation of the meals making for a not quite practical, but fun dinner.

Today we are heading out to a 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration. I’m sure my Instagram feed will be filled with cute little party details. Follow along if you wanna see!

How was your weekend?

The C-Word: How the Aveda Institute Saved My Face

Skin Cancer Awareness // Deciding to go to the Dermatologist from A Well Crafted Party

Me about to get my very first facial from a student at the Aveda Institute in Portland

 

I know… the title is pretty bold. Yes, really my dermatologist and my upcoming surgery will likely be the things that actually save my face. However, I don’t know how long it would have taken me to go into the dermatologist if it hadn’t been for one lovely lady at the Aveda Institute in Portland.

*Please note that I am in NO WAY suggesting going to a salon for a facial is in any way equivalent to a professional opinion. But, I wanted to tell my story about how one facial moved me to going to get my face examined by the dermatologist.

Discovery of an Abnormal Mole

I actually discovered my new frienemy about two and a half years ago. It was sometime after my little one was born that I noticed  a mole on my forehead that I had never noticed before. I wasn’t concerned. I am covered in freckles and moles… I thought perhaps it was a sign I was aging. To me, it looked like a clear, slightly raised bump on my forehead. It was nothing a little makeup couldn’t cover.

I did mention the new mole to my general practitioner when I went in for a check-up. The doctor wasn’t concerned at the time. (Admittedly, I came in with a laundry list of things I wanted him to check and he gave each item his attention, but focused on the items that were causing me the most distress.)

About a YEAR later my mole began breaking open and bleeding. This should have been a dead giveaway to me. It wasn’t. I assumed I just scraped it hard with my towel when drying my hair. It would heal up, I’d forget about it, and then it would break open again.

At one point I was out with a friend during a photo shoot and she told me about her experience of skin cancer. She described what was happening on my face to a T. I didn’t tell her I was concerned about my face. I didn’t show her my mole. But, I knew I had skin cancer. I still didn’t go in to see the dermatologist. (I’m shaking my head too right now.)

To see a chart for your skin self-checks visit the ABCD’s of Melanoma from the Melanoma Foundation. My skin did not have the same color as the ones in this chart. Also, gross.

Why I didn’t go to the Dermatologist

Does it matter? It was stupid! I had a thousand and one excuses… “It’s too expensive.” “I don’t have time.” “I can’t take off of work right now.” “It’ll be 6 months before I can even get an appointment.” Etc. Etc. Etc.

Skin Cancer Awareness // Deciding to go to the Dermatologist from A Well Crafted Party

Why I spend money/time/effort on my skin care enough to go to a spa, but not a dermatologist will never ever make sense to me.

What Made me FINALLY Go In

This year for the Portland Fashion Week Style Collective I had the opportunity to try the Aveda Institute’s student-led spa facial. I had never had a facial before and was looking forward to it. I really didn’t even think about my mole being a concern. The student did an amazing job. She was professional and explained the process to me as she went along because I asked her to. She evaluated my skin so that she could suggest the types of products and skin regime I should follow for my skin. It was great! And then she happened upon my mole…

“Can you tell me more about this spot on your forehead?” she politely asked.

“Yea, it breaks open every now and again. But, it is fine.” I lied.

Later her teacher came in and checked her progress. She too was professional and explained things to me as she was working. She too asked me about the spot. I told her a little bit more.

“It is a mole of mine that breaks open every now and again. I know I need to get it checked. I have an appointment next month.” I TOTALLY LIED AGAIN.

“Oh good! It is looking a little abnormal to me and I definitely think you should get it checked out. When is your appointment?” She responded. (Did she know I was lying!?!)

“I think in two weeks… I don’t remember.” I lied again.

I’m not a liar. I don’t like lying. I am BAD at lying. So this little lie stuck with me all night long.

The next day I called and made my appointment. Surprisingly enough I found a dermatologist near my work, that accepted my insurance, and had an appointment open just three days later.

So, that lovely lady and Aveda student really helped make me go in to get my skin check and begin my journey to healthier skin. And, bonus, they also suggested some great tips for my skin type that have really improved my skin. But, that is a post for another day (soon!)

Do you have something that you need to get checked that you’ve been putting off?

 

 

 

The C-Word: Skin Cancer Awareness Month

Skin Cancer Awareness

A few weeks ago I shared on Instagram about going in for a biopsy on my face. (See bandage above.) I recently received the news from the biopsy that I do indeed have skin cancer. I’ve been mulling the news over for a while before deciding to post about my experience.

I’m a pretty even-keel person publicly. While I am privately very much an advocate for different topics and causes, on-line I keep things pretty neutral. Live and let live. I don’t typically get on my soap-box for things. But, life sure does have a way of changing things quickly, doesn’t it? I got this diagnosis at the end of April and low-and-behold, May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. (See me stepping up on the soap box now?)

I’ve decided to share about my experience and focus on Skin Cancer fairly often this month. It won’t take over every post, and some of it will be a lot of fun. But, know that from now on… I’m an advocate for sun safety and skin care, and I won’t be neutral on this topic.

A bit about my skin cancer diagnosis:

  • I have Basal Cell Carcinoma. As my doctor says, “If you have to have skin cancer, this is the one you want.”
  • I’ll be having a Mohs Surgery this month to remove the cancer cells. It is an outpatient surgery that has very good results in removing skin cancer.
  • Even with good insurance this is a very expensive surgery and will be difficult (but, not impossible) for our family. This may impact the blog for a few months.
  • I’m scared. But, I know I’m going to be okay.
  • Buy stock in sunscreen now because I’m buying it out. All the sunscreen. :)

A few facts about skin cancer:

  • Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. More than 3.5 million skin cancers in over two million people are diagnosed EACH YEAR.
  • One in five Americans will develop skin cancer.
  • Basal Cell Carcinoma (the kind I have) is the most common form of skin cancer; an estimated 2.8 million are diagnosed annually in the US. BCC cases are rarely fatal, but can be highly disfiguring if allowed to grow. (gulp.)
  • Skin cancer can be deadly.
  • About 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun. (Remember your last sunburn?)
  • More skin cancer facts may be found at skincancer.org

Throughout the month I’ll be sharing about my biopsy experience (no pics!), more information on skin cancer, crafts for sun-safety and some great sun-safety products.

I’d love to read, listen to or share your stories about how Skin Cancer has touched your lives as well!

Comment below or email me at jenni[at]awellcraftedparty[dot]com.

Curvy Girl Style: Tunic Shirts & Ankle Pant

You ever have one of those days where you just feel great about how you look? Well, I don’t have those days too often… but, I totally felt great about the way I looked at our January Portland Bloggers’ meet-up this past weekend. I even felt good enough to ask my friend Macey of Motormouth Studios to snap a few photos of me!

Plus Size Women's Fashion from A Well Crafted Party

Yep, I totally popped my collar.

My outfit for the event was pretty simple. Black Old Navy Ankle Pants, a pink spotted H&M Tunic Tank, my favorite black kitten heels, and my Old Navy jean jacket. I didn’t even wear any jewelry! The outfit felt pulled together, yet comfortable. I could have easily have changed my jean jacket for a nice cardigan or blazer and worn the outfit to work. (None of the above links are affiliate links…. just sharing places I’ve purchased some of these items!)

Plus Sized Women's Fashion from A Well Crafted Party

I love these kitten heels!

 

What outfit do you have that just makes you feel GREAT about yourself? Comment below (links are great too!)

Choosing Our Family Photo Attire

I will never claim to be the most fashionable person, or to have the latest in fashionable items. But, I do love clothes. And, I love styling my little family. Yesterday I shared some of our family photos taken by Motormouth Studios one very cold day this last November. It was FREEZING outside, so I asked everyone to dress warmly and to coordinate with a color scheme of brown and blue. I didn’t want everyone to be wearing the same thing or even close to the same thing– I didn’t give much more for family members to go on for their outfit styling. I’m really glad I didn’t dictate that everyone wear a certain type of outfit or only certain colors. I was really happy with how everyone looked together!

Family Photo Attire

Photo by Motormouth Studios

My husband placates my desire for us all to coordinate (never match) and usually allows me to pick choices of clothing for him to wear. He always gets the final say and typically it surrounds whether or not he can also wear a hat he likes or comfortable shoes. My son, given the choice, will always choose anything with Lighting McQueen or Elmo on it. So, I’m thankful that he is pretty great at letting me pick out his attire for now. He enjoys getting dressed up and making sure his hair looks good in the mirror. When I purchased the sweaters for the little guy and his dad I didn’t realize how similar they’d look. It *almost* looks as if they are matchy matchy… but, little one’s cute polka dot undershirt helped them differ just enough in my book.

Outfit Details:

(some of the below links are affiliate links… purchases made through these links will benefit this blogger)

The Lady: Dark wash jeans, Lucky Brand Plus Size Ginger Skinny Jean// Shoes, Payless tan suede (ish) booties from three years ago (similar tan booties) // Light Denim Chambray Shirt, Lucky Brand Western Chambray Shirt// V-Neck Sweater,Liz Claiborne Brown Sweater(similar sweater)// Chunky Necklace, H&M (similar chunky necklace)

The Man: Dark wash jeans, Old Navy// Chambray Shirt, H&M (Similar) // Brown dress slip on shoes, (similar) // Chunky white sweater, H&M (Similar Men’s Knit Sweater)

The Kid: Chunky White Knit Sweater, H&M (Similar Sweater) // 7 For All Mankind 2T Slimmy Jeans // Navy and White Polka Dot Button Up Shirt, H&M (Similar)

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What do you think? Did our outfits work together or did we completely miss the mark? What do you like to wear for family photos? Comment with your tips below!

Winter Beauty: My Winter Beauty Routines

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Winter is one of my favorite seasons. I love warm drinks and sparkly lights. I love the holiday parties. I love the fashion of Winter—layers, scarves, boots, coats, and tights make me happy.

But, in the cold of my bathroom on winter mornings and evenings I have absolutely no desire to do my normal beauty routine. I don’t want to take the time to shave, just to step out of my warm shower to chilly air that bristles the hair on my legs all over again. Washing my face at night seems tedious. The call of my cozy bed and layers of blankets seems so much more appealing than taking the time to rub lotion all over me.

Of course, during the winter I need the extra beauty routines the most, heaters and layers of clothing dry my skin up terribly. By mid-winter I am an itchy mess if I don’t take the time to moisturize. Icy wind chaps my lips in an instant. My face breaks out more than ever due to a combination of holiday eating and dry skin.

Lately I’ve been trying to simplify my beauty routine so it isn’t such a pain to do during the winter.

My Morning Winter Beauty Routine

  1. Brush my teeth —Yep, putting it here. Basic hygiene and beauty routine basic numero uno.
  2. Shower — Sometimes, in the dead of winter when I sleep in, I take the toothbrush into the shower and do my teeth brushing routine as I soak. Some think that is gross. I think it is a smart use of valuable sleeping time.
  3. Wash my hair—I’m a weirdo that washes my hair daily. I’ve tried not doing it… but, my hair/body combo is just way too oily. I feel gross and my hair looks a little like a grease spill.
  4. Exfoliate in the shower BEFORE shaving— I don’t do this daily, more like once a week. And, I recently discovered Smooth Naturals Body Scrub and am loving it. The sugar grains are large and chunky so I can feel them over my skin and can easily rinse them off. Sometimes, with smaller grains of sugar, I feel like I don’t know when to stop exfoliating and my skin ends up raw. This particular scrub smells like brown sugar and I love it.
  5. Shave— I am a once-a-day shaver in the Summer months. During the winter I stick with once-a-day for my underarms and go to every-other-day for my legs.
  6. Moisturize—This is my least favorite part of the morning. The air is cold. I want to get dressed and go… but, if I don’t put on some lotion then I feel itchy during the day.
  7. Makeup— My makeup routine is another post entirely. Lets just say that I’ve gotten my routine down to the simplest form it can go without going bare faced every day. When I was younger (pre-kiddo) I always wore eyeliner, eyeshadow, base, blush, mascara, powder, and lipstick or gloss. Now-a-days it is more like a thin base layer to even out skin, a touch of creme blush, mascara, and a swipe of my Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer.

All of that looks like A LOT. But, really, it all takes about 15 minutes max. If I choose to blow dry my hair (some days I let it air dry) then I add another 8 or so minutes to the routine.

My Day Time Beauty Routine

I don’t have time to do a lot of beauty maintenance during the day. But, there are a few items I carry in my purse in case of touch-ups and such.

  1. Lip Balm— Smooth Naturals sent me their Smooth Lips Balm and I have been keeping it in my purse for daily moisturizing. The balm is good, exactly what you want in a balm. The thing I love about it though is the fact that the large tube (much larger than a normal tube of balm) is never lost in my purse. I can easily reach in and pull it out in a hurry. And, if you’ve seen my purse, you know that is a feat.
  2. Lip Color— I switch up my lip color all the time. Currently my purse is holding three different Burts Bee’s lip colors (a gloss and two Lip Shimmers) as well as my favorite lipstick.
  3. Floss
  4. Face Wipes— Sometimes the heater is on too much and I sweat, or my makeup feels grimy, or I eat something and want to wash my hands on the fly. I’ve been addicted to my Puffs Fresh Faces since I received them over the Summer. I’ve bought extras for my purse, desk at work, and gym bag.
Burts Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser

Burts Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser

My Evening Winter Beauty Routine

  1. Brush my teeth— Yep, again. 😉
  2. Wash my face— When I was a pimply faced teen I washed my face daily with all kinds of harsh cleansers. Then, in adulthood, I found that actually just rinsing my face in the evening did wonders for my skin so I threw out facial cleansers all together. However, as I age, I’ve found that my skin is breaking out more often and that a good facial cleanser is needed again. I tried the medicated cleansers and ended up with incredibly dry, flaky skin. Now I use Burt’s Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser and have liked the results thus far. (I’ve been using it for about three months now.) The soap doesn’t feel sticky (though, it is a little gooey) and doesn’t leave a residue. I recommend it to my friends looking for less harsh alternatives to the normal, everyday face wash. Though, I also warn them, it doesn’t foam up at all. It took me a little getting used to!
  3. SLEEP — Or, at least I try.

Other than the items listed below I try my best to exercise, eat a nutritious diet, drink water, and take vitamins. I’m not the best at keeping up good habits unfortunately. But, I always go back to them.

What is your Winter beauty routine?

 

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