“All my memories gather ’round her..”

Growing up I couldn’t wait to be of age to leave West Virginia. I was lucky enough to have parents that loved vacationing and going new places. They took me to nearly every state in the US, almost all of the Carribbean and sent me to many countries in Europe. I remember hating the negative connotation associated with our state. (Yes, we have our teeth. We’re not married to our Brother or Sister’s. We also wear shoes.. for the most part.) As sad as I am to admit it, I was embarrassed to be a West Virginian.

I envied the growth of other states, always getting in the best stores, sports arenas, having beaches… I complained that we never had anything to do here. I came of age to leave and had the chance to move away for college. I chickened out. I ended up attending Marshall University, our local college. (Go Herd!) My plans then became, “graduate and leave”. Time came and went. I hated the thought of leaving my friends and family. I had a child and wanted him to grow up in a safe community. I knew West Virginia could provide this. I still stayed.

Over time, my opinion of my state began to change. I guess aging has made me appreciate the little things. Today, the drug epidemic is getting out of control. Finding good paying jobs here is becoming near impossible. But the people, they are still so kind. Genuinly kind. The “help your neighbor type”. Come to visit or move away. You will not leave this state without that impression. I promise you.

I think back to growing up splashing around in a creek, picking honeysuckle and exploring the woods. Boy, was I blessed. We actually get to enjoy all four seasons here. Learning that many people haven’t played in the snow still shocks me! Sometimes it does a soul good just to escape the city lights for a chance to stare at the stars.

One thing you cant argue against, WV, she’s a beaut’! West Virginia’s number one attribute has always been her beauty. Her mountains and sunsets are some of God’s best artwork. She’s filled with waterfalls, valleys and rivers. Caves and animals. The changing leaves in the fall are enough to leave you breathless. I’ve claimed before that my favorite color is October. This is wholeheartedly why. John Denver’s “Country Roads” never fails to bring a smile to my face. And, I’ll admit, I still get a giggle when out-of-towner’s dont realize that WV is a state of it’s own. (We, in fact, did separate from Virginia.) Regardless, looking back, I realize the things I hated when I was younger are so silly. All trivial misconceptions from uneducated people.
You stole my heart, WV. In the best sort of way. I’m sorry it took me so long to appreciate you. I can’t imagine life anywhere else. Happy 155th Birthday, Mountain Momma!

Foundation… It’s a start.

I don’t know about you, but every Summer I hit a point where my time in the sun has been just enough that Winter foundation just isn’t cutting it anymore. This year, for me, that moment just happened to coincide with a massive break out. Stress, hormones and food allergies have gotten the best of me and the coverage from my tried and true MAC foundation just isn’t enough. I’ll admit, I’m a sucker for these posts on Instagram from girls with pristine makeup. (As sure as I am that I will never achieve that.) I came across an IG story from blogger Hollie Woodward (shes great, follow her) going over her everyday makeup routine. While my pocketbook is not currently equipped to purchase everything in her repertoire, I did run to Ulta and Macy’s to grab a couple of her staples. Before doing so, I checked out the online reviews for the products. Both scored nearly 5 stars from thousands of people. I was sold.

Upon heading to Ulta, I was bummed to learn that they didn’t carry the Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation that I was after. But, they do carry the Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer. I spot tested a few shades on my wrist before trying the concealer on my face. I have been using Becca concealer for the past two years. I’m not sure if my skin has gotten dryer or what, but the Becca is looking worse and worse under my eyes. The coverage from the Tarte concealer was great and what the what!?! It’s made to also be used to contour!?! I went pretty light in color so that there would be a somewhat visible difference when I apply it. It’s a bit pricey, but pretty much a two in one so that’s fair enough I suppose. I checked out and headed over to Macy’s.

Estee Lauder here I come! Stood around forever waiting to get color matched. After 10 minutes I decided to do it myself. I feel like the women that have matched me in the past always pick a ghostly hue anyways. I slowly worked my way up the spectrum by testing on my wrist. My intention was to get a shade that I can wear with a spray tan while gaining actual color from the sun. Once I found one I was happy with, I tested it on my face. Wowza! The reviews on this stuff were spot on. The coverage is a bit thicker than what I’m used to but it looked great on. The foundation didn’t come across as cakey or fake, it gave me even looking coverage with a great color tone.

The real test came on Sunday when I actually made a day of wearing them. We had our baby’s dedication service at church so I had to go up in front of the whole congregation with my family. (Yikes!) It went beautifully. And, the makeup was splendid. I didn’t feel the need to come home and let my face breathe. I left it on almost the whole day!

I’ve talked to a few of my friends about the Double Wear and apparently I’ve been living under a rock! Why hasn’t anyone told me about this foundation before!?! Haha! Have you been using it for years yourself? Or, are you a noob like me? Let me know!