This is just a quick video showing how to french braid, dutch braid, and rope braid! I hope you enjoy it!

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When I asked AJ what he wanted for Christmas he just said “anything from Sportys” which happens to be an online store that sells everything pilot. So I trudged on over to Sportys.com and found AJ an awesome Pilot bag and iPad Flight desk. He was both surprised and pleased by his gifts though I think he was secretly hoping for the flight simulator throttle quadrant. yeeeah. That’s on my list for next year now.

AJ surprised me with a beautiful set of diamond studs. They’re so cute and delicate, I’ve been wearing them every day since. I have a cubic pair that I wear religiously and he thought I’d appreciate some 14k ones. I was also privy to receive the most awesomely spectacular Kindle Fire. I was so excited to get this gift. I’m still waiting on a cover but am already loving this electronic baby.

Yesterday I was surprised to receive my Secret Santa gift all the way from Deutschland. Though I laughed when I saw where it came from because that’s where I sent my Secret Santa gift to so secret’s out! Thanks Alyx! She gave me a beautiful floral print scarf and two delicious chocolate bars.

Cutie Gucci received a fun new stuffed animal friend for Christmas. It has a squeaker in its stomach as well as one in each foot so we wrapped it up and squeaked it so Gucci would know there was something in it for him. I was able to get it on camera and laughed so hard just watching him try so vigorously to get it open.

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A reader asked about a tutorial for my hairstyle in the side braid tutorial with my sister as the model so this is how I got that look. I used a 1 inch Hot Tools curling iron to get my curls. I hope you find it useful!

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I always appreciate product reviews so I know which are good to get and which should be skipped.These are my favorite products of the moment. Hopefully you find it useful! 
Sigma Flat Top Synethetic Kabuki F80 – This brush is amazing. Bottom line. I love this brush for blending liquid foundation. It leaves a flawless finish and you don’t end up with liquid foundation all over your fingers or in an uneven pattern on your face. All I can say is that I wish I’d bought it sooner. I’m definitely hooked.
MUG Eye Shader Brush – This my favorite brush for packing on eye shadow. It’s got thick bristles that really hold the color so you don’t have to keep packing and packing.
Neutrogena Healthy Skin Liquid Foundation – When winter set in my skin turned a pale shade of white. So I ventured out to find a new foundation that matched my skin tone really well. I love this foundation because it’s not an oil base so it glides on very smoothly and matches my skin color very well. It evenly covers and isn’t easily detectable.
Eve Pearl Salmon Concealer & Treatment – I saw this product used on a makeup tutorial and when they applied it under their eyes, their eye bags and dark circles instantly vanished and I knew I had to have it. I love this concealer because it covers better than any other concealer I’ve tried. I have it in light and it’s a little too dark for my skin color but it hides well under foundation.
NYX Cream Blush in Boho Chic – I bought this product online and when I got it was a lot pinker than the picture showed. I wanted a blush that was cream based so I wasn’t wearing too many powder products during these dry winter months. I really liked the pink color and it gives my complexion a soft pink glow.
Benefit High Beam – This stuff is amazing. I’d never even heard of highlighters until I watched a few makeup tutorials. This product gives you the prettiest sheen right on the top of your cheek bones and really adds that extra punch that you need to complete your makeup look.
MAC Eyeshadow in All that Glitters – This is my favorite eye shadow color because it goes on as a pinky peach. It’s almost a chameleon color because it looks like a pinkish, tan, champagne color but when it’s applied it goes on as the prettiest pinky peach.
L’Oreal Voluminous Naturale – I love this mascara because it really separates my lashes while still giving them some thickness. It’s a synthetic brush which I’m not always the biggest fan of but this stuff really gives me the look I love for my lashes. It also washes off easily and doesn’t have an overpowering smell.
Urban Decay 24/7 liner in Dime – This is my favorite pencil for coloring in my waterline. I am not a big fan of black and brown liner on my bottom lid so I like to use white and now this silver gray color. It helps make my eyes look more open and awake.
Buxom Lips in Katie – I love this stuff. If it wasn’t so darn expensive I’d own one in every shade. It’s perfect because it gives the perfect sheer glossy sheen and isn’t sticky. It also plumps up your lips so you feel a tingly cooling sensation whenever you’re wearing it.
L’Oreal Infallible in Rebel Red – I love this red gloss because its not as pigmented as a red lipstick and it allowed me to get used to the look without going full force into the deep red lip. I love the sheen glossy look that it provides and does tend to get a little sticky. The taste also reminds me of black licorice. 
MAC Lipstick in Ruby Woo –  This was my first red lipstick so naturally it’s my favorite. I’ve seen it on a number of people and blogs so I had faith it would bode well on my lips. I plan on trying out different shades of red to see what else I’d like but for now this will do. It’s actually got an almost orange tint to it when I apply it so my next step is to try a more full red color.
What’s your favorite go-to makeup?
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