Join me on Saturday at an Advanced Screening of STORKS!

25 Aug

I’ll be at AMC Columbia this Saturday to watch an advance screening of STORKS and 20 of you are invited to join me!

That’s right I have TWENTY admit-four ticket downloads to see the brand-spanking new movie before anyone else. First come, first serve! Also, get to the theater early, because they overbook to ensure a full house (their rules, not mine).

Event info:
Saturday, August 27 – 11:00 AM
AMC Columbia
10300 Little Patuxent Pkwy, Columbia, MD 21044

Here’s your link to download your tickets: CLICK HERE

It looks super funny and I can’t wait to see it. I just hope that Jack doesn’t start pestering me for an older brother again…

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Reviewing Birchbox: July & August Reveals

22 Aug

It’s Birchbox review time again! I love getting a peek into what other people receive in their subscription boxes, so I hope you enjoy seeing what I got.

Let’s get right to it…

My July Birchbox:

July Birchbox Reveal - Pocketful of Joules

  • Marcelle 3-in-1 Micellar Solution, full-size $21
  • Clinique Liquid Facial Soap, full-size $17
  • REN Keep Young and Beautiful Instant Firming Beauty Shot, full-size $54
  • Oribe Shampoo & Conditioner, full-size $49
  • Molinard Ambre Eau de Parfum, full-size $65
  • Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real Mascara, full-size $24

This month’s box had bonus items of the packet of shampoo and conditioner, so it was a pretty awesome deal for the $10 subscription cost.  With that being said, I actually really disliked the shampoo and conditioner – they made my hair very dry and tangled – so it’s great that they weren’t included in my five items. My favorite item from this box is the Benefit mascara, which works great and doesn’t leave any clumps.

The most pricey item in the box that I wouldn’t have tried on my own is the instant firming beauty shot. I don’t notice any difference, but I’ve only used it a couple times so far. The liquid facial soap from Clinique will be handy in my travel bag for my next trip.

My August Birchbox:

August Birchbox Reveal - Pocketful of Joules

  • Oribe Apres Beach Wave and Shine Spray, full-size $22 – $39
  • ProfilePRO Ultra Nourising Oil, full-size $22.95
  • REN Flash Hydro-Boost Instant Plumping Emulsion, full-size $42
  • The Organic Pharmacy Enzyme Peel Mask with Vitamin C and Papaya, full-size $79
  • Stila Stay all Day Liquid Lipstick, full-size trio $20

I found it really odd that both my July and August boxes contained products from Oribe and REN. One brand repeat would be a coincidence… but two? Super weird.

I was really excited about the Oribe Beach Wave and Shine spray though and used as soon as I received my box. One of my biggest complaints about sea salt spray for beach waves is that it dries your hair out, so I really wanted to see how this version felt. And… I HATED IT. I used it as directed on damp, combed hair and gave my locks a nice scrunch while spraying it on. Instead of soft beachy waves and shine, it left me with limp and stringy hair. Not only for that entire day, but the next day too after I brushed it out. This one is going straight in the trash!

I haven’t had a chance to try the enzyme peel mask, but with a full-size cost of $79 I’m hoping it’s pretty great. I’ll keep you posted on my Instagram account when I use it. The Stila lipstick is not my color, so I’ll add it to my fun stuff pile for my sisters to check out when I see them.

Once again, no real winners in either my July or August boxes. I do now have a back-up mascara for when mine runs out, as well as a few things to add to my travel items box for our next vacation. All in all, I feel like the boxes were worth the $10 price tag. However, if I have another few months of blegh boxes I may need to take another break.


Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored by Birchbox, I paid for the $10 fee with my own hard-earned money. If you enjoyed my review and decide to try Birchbox for yourself, the biggest compliment you can give me is by using my referral link. Thank you to anyone who chooses to click through and support my shopping addiction!


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Red Door Spa: The Mint Julep Spritzer Pedicure

18 Aug

{Disclaimer: I am a Red Door Spa #GalSquad Ambassador and receive services at no cost.}

For this month’s Red Door spa service, I had the chance to experience the Mint Julep Spritzer pedicure. This pedicure – besides sounding totally delicious – is one of their seasonal services with the scents of mint, magnolia and citrus.

Your feet are exfoliated with a lightly-scented citrus grass salt scrub, massaged with mint julep and lavender shea butter, and soaked in a honey-magnolia scented oil. A paraffin treatment seals in moisture and nails are polished in your favorite Essie shade. Click here to learn more about the Red Door Spa’s Mint Julep Spritzer services.

My feet were in some major need of some TLC to the point that they looked like Hobbit feet, so I scheduled an appointment as soon as I could fit one in my schedule. I’m counting down the days until I get to leave for the beach, so pretty toenails were totally on my to do list!

I had never been to the Gaithersburg location before, but it was just as beautiful as the spa in Baltimore.

Red Door Spa - Gaithersburg

Some awesome restaurants were in the same shopping area, so next time I’m going to have to bring a girlfriend and make a whole food/spa event out of it. Doesn’t the wall of nail polish just make you want to have pretty nails all the time? And I’m kind of intrigued by the cool green-blue shades at the top.

Red Door Spa - nail polish wall

Once we get past all the clipping, filing and sanding of my paws, the paraffin treatment is my second favorite part of the pedicure. My absolute FAVORITE part is the leg and foot massage, of course. Mamma MIA was it fabulous!

Red Door Spa - parafan wax

After my toenails were painted the perfect orange-red shade, I hung out in the relaxation room until they were totally dry. I hate it when I immediately smudge a great looking pedicure!

Red Door Spa - pedicure

I loved my chance to try out the Mint Julep Spritzer pedicure and my feet and legs are so incredibly soft after all that attention. Not to mention that my toenails are painted way more perfectly than I could ever imagine doing on my own!

Reader Bonus:
My friends at Red Door Spa generously have provided my Maryland readers with a special promo code. If you would like to experience the Mint Julep Spritzer Pedicure, use GSFANAUG1 to get 20% off now through September 30th (code good for both the Baltimore and Gaithersburg locations). You can book online or call 1.866.RED.DOOR with the special code.


Disclaimer: I am a Red Door Spa #GalSquad Ambassador and receive services at no cost. Offer valid at Baltimore & Gaithersburg locations. Please enter offer code during online booking, or call to book and mention offer code. Offer cannot be combined with other offers or discounts. Not valid towards product, gift certificate, gift card, packages, Red Door More Membership or Series purchases. Offer expires September 30, 2016. Code: GSFANAUG1

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Exploring LA

16 Aug

One of my favorite things is when I have a conference to go to in a new city. It’s such a great little nudge to get out of my traveling comfort zone and explore someplace new. I was thrilled when I found out that this year’s BlogHer conference (you can read all about it here) was in Los Angeles, California and found plenty of fun things to do while I was there.

The FIDM Museum & Galleries
I’m a huge fan of the show Crazy Ex Girlfriend and I follow the show’s star/creator Rachel Bloom on Instagram. Well, a couple days before my trip she posted that some of the show’s costumes were on display at FIDM for their Art of Television Costume Design exhibit running 8/2 – 10/15 (you can see her post here). I checked the distance on google maps, and it was only a short 10 minute walk from my hotel… so it was obviously meant to be!

The exhibit is totally free to check out and was full of amazing costumes! Here are just a few of my favorites:

FIDM 1 - Pocketful of Joules

FIDM - Outlander

FIDM - Jane

FIDM - Game of Thrones

FIDM - Crazy Ex

FIDM - Crazy Ex close up

You can see two of the Crazy Ex Girlfriend costumes in action in this video (there are some naughty words, so don’t turn it up at work):

After touring the exhibit, I walked out the back of the museum/school and found this pretty little park to hang out in for a while.

FIDM - garden

The Warner Brother’s Tour
I’m a huge Gilmore Girls fan, so I knew that I wanted to make time to get over to the Warner Brothers lot for their studio tour. The tour costs $62 and lasts about 3 hours, two of which are guided and the third is self-guided. Here are some of the stops we made while riding around on the golf cart.

Luke’s Diner:

Lukes 1

Ms Patty’s Dance Studio:

Ms Pattys dance studio

Sookie’s House:

Sookies house

The Friend’s Stage:

Friends Stage - Pocketful of Joules

The famous Friend’s Couch with Liz Hill (this is her pen name) who writes at Wonder Woman I’m Not:

Friends couch - Pocketful of Joules

In addition to riding a golf cart though the outdoor sets, there were two inside backlot tours. DC Universe: The Exhibit and The Harry Potter Exhibit. Here I am with one of Aragog’s children:

WB 1 - Pocketful of Joules

And checking out Harley Quinn’s cell from Suicide Squad:

Jail cell - Pocketful of Joules

Of course, I had to buy a souvenir before we left and ended up with this Luke’s Diner t-shirt.

The Santa Monica Pier & Surrounding Areas
Before I left LA I still have a few things on my list… to see the ocean, do a little shopping and eat a Sprinkles cupcake. All doable stuff! I took an Uber out to the Santa Monica Pier (with the chattiest Uber driver ever…) and holy guacamole was it crowded!

Santa Monica Pier - Pocketful of Joules

I did a little bit of souvenir shopping and picked myself up this t-shirt while I was on the pier. The beach was pretty crowded too, but I made sure to stick my feet in the sand before I walked on to explore the area. Look at those gorgeous mountains in the distance though!

Santa Monica Pier view - Pocketful of Joules

From the Pier, I pretty much just walked down Grand Street all the way to Venice, stopping in any interesting looking store I found along the way. My absolute favorite find was Accents Jewelry Design, a little shop that showcased local jewelry artists. I could have spent my entire mortgage payment in the store, but ended up just buying a pretty little druzy necklace that I can’t wait to wear.

After hours of exploring, I returned to my hotel…only to realize that I still needed to go and check out a Sprinkles bakery. I threw my shoes back on and walked to one that was about 15 minutes away, getting there about 20 minutes before they closed. Out of the flavors they had available, three looked really good – Cuban coffee, red velvet, and vanilla. So, I ordered all three in the name of science. Or taste testing. Or, my sweet tooth.

Sprinkles 1

Sprinkles 2

To be completely honest, I don’t really see what all the hoopla is about. The cupcakes were fine, but nothing mind blowing. I actually disliked the Cuban coffee cupcake so much that after one bite it was discarded. The red velvet and the vanilla were good, just not amazingly great. If I had to choose a winner, it would be the vanilla… but only if paired with a bitter coffee to balance out the extreme sweetness. Eh, at least I checked them off my list.

Cupcakes aside, I had a really wonderful time in Los Angeles and I’m so glad I had to opportunity to visit. I especially loved the Warner Brothers Tour and highly recommend it if you are in the area!

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