If you have been following me for several years, you might remember that I used to do monthly reading blog posts where I would share mini book reviews on all the books I had read that month. That series was fun while it lasted, but it slowly petered out (partially because I’m not reading quite as much and partially because I was growing tired of it).
I still love the idea of a monthly series and so I have been wanting to try something different for a while. I finally decided to start a “Monthly Favorites” series. Near the end of each month, I’ll share a list of some of my favorite things from the past month. These things could be anything from beauty products, house decor, photography/business tools, books, food, podcasts, and more. The idea is that it will be a random collection of fun things to scroll through and maybe you’ll discover something new to try!
I’m excited to share what I loved in April and I had a lot of fun compiling this list and finding the links and pictures so you can enjoy these things as well!
01. Fresh Flowers
Ok, so I don’t have any links for this, but I have had so many fresh flowers in my house since Easter and they bring me so much joy! Some people willingly spend $5/day on a cup of coffee, but I will gladly spend $5-10 every other week to bring fresh flowers into my house. I usually just pick up 2-3 bouquets from our local grocery store and arrange them together in a variety of vases I’ve thrifted or found in various home good stores.
02. Senegence CCTM
I started buying Senegence makeup products almost a year ago and I don’t think I am ever using anything else (I know, I know, I am rebel Catholic woman skipping out on Beauty Counter ;). While I could rave about all of their products, the one thing I use every single day is their Color Correcting Tinted Moisturizer. This stuff is amazing. It gives you a beautiful sheer coverage that hides what you want to hide but doesn’t leave your face cakey or heavy. In fact, it is the lightest make-up I’ve ever worn and yet it gives you a smooth, glowly complexion. Since it’s a moisturizer it also helps your skin.
The craziest part is the color correction science that actually matches your skin tone within about 5 minutes of applying it. I have tested this out with my roommate, Deirdre, she has a much lighter skin tone with cool undertones, while I have a darker and more golden complexion. However, we can both wear the exact same shade of CCTM because within a few minutes it has matched our different skin tones. (This also means you never have to worry about those awkward makeup lines on your neck.) This stuff isn’t cheap, but it does last about 6 months and it is 10000x worth it in my opinion. Oh, and did I mention all their makeup is clean and actually healthy for your skin??
03. Blue Planet II
Speaking of Deirdre, she and I decided that we wanted to watch all the Planet Earth and Blue Planet films this year. We started backwards with Planet Earth II back in January/February and then decided to start Blue Planet II this month. Some of our friends have laughed at our obsession with this show, but I’m telling you, don’t judge this until you have sat down and watched it yourself. The footage is absolutely insane (and the quality is equally amazing) and David Attenborough’s narration is just epic.
04. Kii Pix Polaroid Printer
Keeping with the theme of Deirdre, it was actually her who discovered this little polaroid printer and we decided to get it a few weeks ago when we were making a scrapbook for a friend of ours. It is completely manual, so no batteries necessary but it works great! A little disclaimer, we actually had to send back the first one that came because it was defective and wouldn’t eject the film. However, the replacement that amazon sent us works just fine! It is vastly cheaper than most polaroid printers out there and it is such a fun way to turn some of your favorite phone photos into polaroids. I would just recommend watching a youtube video showing you how to use it before you use it the first time because it can be a little confusing.
05. Screwtape Letters
I decided to re-read The Screwtape Letters and I had forgotten just how good it is. If you have never read it, I cannot recommend enough picking it up and reading it. And if you have read it, but it’s been awhile, read it again. It is filled with so much truth and makes you think hard about your life and the ways that the Devil attempts to snare you in your day-to-day life.
Photographers, this one is for you! I have started having more and more couples chose to add an heirloom album to their wedding experience and I have been on the hunt for a better album design tool. I already have been using BlogStomp for years to prep my blog posts and so it was an easy decision to decide to use their other software: AlbumStomp.
I downloaded it a few weeks ago and recently finished designing my first album with it. It was SO easy to use and made the entire process much faster. My only regret is that it has taken me this long to get it!
07. Light Blue & Sea Green Taper Candles
I have always loved taper candles. There is something so elegant and mesmerizing about a table filled with taper candles. This past Christmas I had natural tan-colored taper candles for our table, and for Easter this year I ordered these candles in light blue and sea breeze green. They came in a rather large pack which means I will definitely be pulling them out for future events.
08. CALIA by Carrie Underwood Women’s Journey Woven 5″ Shorts
I recently discovered Carrie Underwood’s athletic line at our local Dick’s Sporting Goods and I fell in love. All of the pieces are SO comfortable, light, and more modest than a lot of other athletic gear. I bought these shorts in a dark olive green (similar to the shirt pictured) and I love that I can wear them to the gym or dress them up with a plain black tee and wear them casually throughout the day.
09. Immortal Combat by Fr. Dwight Longenecker
My mom gave me this book for Easter and told me that it was incredibly good and nothing like you would expect from the cover and title. I just finished it this week and I have to completely agree with my mom. It was not at all what I was expecting and it was one of the best books I’ve read so far this year. It’s a pretty short book and a very easy read (it reads like a novel instead of a spiritual book). Using ancient mythology, Fr. Dwight paints a picture of the reality of evil in our world and the cosmic war that we are in the midst of.
10. Sweet Potato Goat Cheese Appetizer
For Easter this year, I made this incredible recipe I found on pinterest. These sweet potato goat cheese appetizers are basically tiny pieces of heaven in your mouth. The sweet potato rounds have been coated in cinnamon sugar and then roasted until perfection. Then you add a creamy goat cheese spread on top, sprinkle pecans and dried cranberries onto the goat cheese and drizzle the whole thing with honey. I’m telling you, this is the best way I have ever eaten a sweet potato. Do yourself a favor and go make these. Soon.