Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Julep Nail Polish Review & Giveaway!

Being the nail polish lover that I am, I was thrilled to be contacted by Julep. The company started out as a boutique nail parlor in the Seattle area and later expanded into offering their own line of nail color, very similar to Rescue Beauty Lounge. The difference with Julep is that they offer a monthly subscription service called Julep Maven where you take a style quiz (I’m Classic with a Twist btw) and for $19.99 a month, you’re sent new nail colors and nail care products fitted to your style type. If you don’t want to subscribe, you can purchase as you wish from their website.

One of the most impressive things about Julep is that they believe in women celebrating other women, which is so important in today’s competitive world. Their mission statement reminds you to take a step back and support one another. They also donate $1 from each bottle of nail polish sold to various women’s charities.

The Girlfriend's Essential Nail Vernis Gift Set

It came packaged neat and sleek!

Julep sent me The Girlfriend's Essential Nail Vernis Gift Set, which includes two nail polishes in the colors Catherine and Jennifer as well as their Essential Cuticle Oil.

Here are my thoughts on each product:

First and foremost, I wanted to mention that all of their polish formulas are 3 Free, which means they do not contain any DBP, toluene, formaldehyde. Hooray for that!


I’m not someone that wears red nail polish very often, but after seeing how gorgeous this looked on my nails, I might need to rethink that. Catherine is a warm-toned, classic red that applied like a dream. I’m not exaggerating. I’m always skeptical with any new polish and this made me a believer. It went on smooth, with no pooling at the cuticles or streakiness. The coverage was great and pretty opaque with one coat. I used two for good measure and topped it off with Seche Vite (I also used Sally Hansen as a base). The color is vibrant, shiny and classy looking.

I put this polish to the test and it lasted 5 days with only minor wear at the tips from typing. There were no large chips and the color stayed true.


When I saw this pretty pink in the bottle, it made me smile. Soft, neutral pinks like this are something you can never go wrong with and fitting for any occasion. This is a sheer pink that could easily be worn alone or used to do a French Manicure.

The wear on Jennifer was just as good as Catherine and overall I’m very impressed with the quality of these polishes.

Essential Cuticle Oil
The convenience of this cannot be beat. It rolls on and it’s completely travel friendly. The oil also smells so nice which can be attributed to the lavender, rosewood and ylang-ylang essential oils. It also contains jojoba oil, sweet almond oil and castor oil for moisturizing and vitamin E as an antioxidant. This is also paraben-free.

This does work and made my dry, cracked cuticles smooth and soft, which is so important especially in the dry months of fall and winter.

Onto the fun part…the GIVEAWAY!

One of you lucky ladies has the chance to win The Girlfriend's Essential Nail Vernis Gift Set! This set is the same one that was sent to me for review and is very much Chic & Pink approved. The red shade will be perfect for the upcoming holidays and the pink will work anytime of the year. I also know you’ll love the cuticle oil.

To enter:
Simply leave a comment on this post. Easy as that!

Extra entries:
Follow my blog or let me know you’re already a follower +1
Follow me on Twitter or let me know you’re already one of my Tweeps +1
Tweet about this giveaway – you can use this: Enter to win a Julep Nail Polish Set from @ChicnPink here: +1
Blog about this giveaway +1

You can leave all your entries in one comment or separate comments. I'll ensure they're all counted.

The giveaway will close on 12/07/11 and the winner will be announced 12/08/11
Due to shipping restrictions, this giveaway is open to US Residents only.
Winner will be chosen via

Good luck!

FTC: This nail polish sent was sent to me by Julep in return for an honest review.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tasty Tuesday: Bubble Up Enchiladas

This recipe has been passed around Pinterest, but I was completely sold when I heard Ashley raving about it on Twitter. I was floored to find out that it’s a Weight Watchers recipe, because it’s delicious for being reasonably healthy.

Bubble Up Enchiladas

1 pound lean ground turkey
1 (10 ounce) can enchilada sauce
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 can reduced fat refrigerator biscuits
1 1/2 cups shredded low fat Mexican Cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Brown turkey and drain if needed.
3. Add can of enchilada sauce and can of tomato sauce and stir into meat mixture.
4. Cut the refrigerated biscuits into fourths and stir them in the meat mixture.
5. Grease 9x13 casserole pan add the mixture.
6. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle cheese on top. Bake an additional 10 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Yields 6 servings. WW P+: 8 per serving

File this under easy weeknight meal, because it’s simple and sure to please everyone.


Monday, November 28, 2011

Thanksgiving recap & blog swap reveal!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! Mine was great. I got to spend time with Geof, my family and even did some Christmas shopping.

Wednesday, Geof and I went out on a date night to see Breaking Dawn and then went to dinner at a newish Mexican place called Dos Gringos. It was perfection!

Ready for date night!

Movie + Mexican = Perfection

Thanksgiving was spent at my aunt & uncle’s with the family and Friday we did some Black Friday shopping in Delaware. We scored some great deals! The rest of the weekend consisted of skating, relaxing, more shopping and a little work.

Thanksgiving at my aunt & uncle's

To keep with the theme of the Plenty To Be THANKful For Challenge, here is Day 9: I’m THANKful For Thanksgiving! (Post a picture of your table… if you have time!)

3 large tables for Thanksgiving this year

Day 10 I’m THANKful for Black Friday and Leftovers!

Doing Black Friday shopping in Delaware was definitely something to be THANKful for since we not only got some things on sale, we didn’t have to pay sales tax!

Last but not least is the Plenty To Be THANKful For Blog Swap Reveal!

Look how pretty she wrapped everything!

Love all my new swap goodies!

I was partnered with Stephanie from Life’s Lyrics and to say she spoiled me would be an understatement. She sensed my love for nail polish right away and even got me a shade that was on my Christmas wish list (Rainbow Connection from OPI). She also sent me some other beauty goodies and a gorgeous Christmas ornament along with a gift card for Starbucks!

We connected right away and it turns out, we have a ton in common from our favorite color to our taste in music. That’s why I love swaps, because it’s always nice to meet other great bloggers. Please pay her blog a visit. She’s wonderful!

Manic Mother

Thank you to all the ladies that took the time to organize this challenge and swap. Putting the posts together has been a blast and also given me the opportunity to reflect on the things that I’m most thankful for this season. I’ve also “met” some really nice ladies. I’m thankful for you all!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

I'm THANKful for the special people in my life!

It’s Day 8 of the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap

Manic Mother

Today’s topic is the special people in my life

This is an easy topic and I’m sure anyone that knows me can guess my answers. To make it a little more fun, I’m going to give you 5 reasons why I’m so THANKful for each person I’m lucky enough to have in my life.

1. He lets me warm my cold feet on his legs every night.
2. Gives the best hugs and makes me feel loved.
3. Tells me I’m beautiful at least once a day with or without makeup.
4. Gets me like no one else and always has my back.
5. Makes the best tacos of anyone I know.

1. One of the best shopping partners out there.
2. Loves Lady Gaga, just like her daughter.
3. Strong, independent and smart.
4. Doesn’t care what others think (if only I could be more like that).
5. Giving. She will drop everything to help her family and friends.

1. Can make me laugh on even the worst of days. I’m laughing in my head as I type this at some of the things she comes up with.
2. Doesn’t know how to have a bad time.
3. Will listen to me be ridiculous and tell me I’m being ridiculous.
4. Her dedication. When she says she’s going to do something, she does it.
5. Is as pretty as she is smart and as good a cook as she is crafty.

1. Beautiful inside and out. I don’t know anyone that doesn’t like her.
2. One of the hardest working people I know and so intelligent.
3. The best listener on planet earth.
4. One of those friends you can go weeks without talking to and pick up right where you left off.
5. Has never judged me or made me feel like less of a person.

Amy & Chad
1. My favorite couple and as awesome as they come.
2. Made my past few vacations some of the best ever.
3. Their mutual love for good music.
4. They’re adventurous. They will just pick up and GO!
5. The four of us get along like peas and carrots.

1. Keep me sane some days.
2. Give me a place to ramble and leave me sweet comments that make me smile.
3. I truly love reading about your happiness and joys in life.
4. You inspire me to do more.
5. Where else would I have learned to cook new things, try a new craft and HAVE to have a new nail polish because someone blogged it?!

There you have it! I believe friendships come in quality and not quantity. I have a few special people in my life that I don’t know what I’d do without. For that, I’m very thankful.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I’m THANKful for Thanksgiving Traditions!

It’s Day 7 of the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap.

Manic Mother

Today’s topic is our favorite Thanksgiving Traditions.

Thanksgiving has always been a favorite holiday of mine because it’s all about family getting together and sharing the love. It’s isn’t about presents and more about presence. With as fast paced as life can be, it’s nice to spend this special holiday together around the table talking about life and catching up with one another.

For as long as I can remember, we’ve gone to my aunt and uncle’s house where the entire family is gathered. The table has changed throughout the years. I remember when my grandparents were still alive and led us in grace before enjoying our delicious feast. Back in those days, I still sat at the kids table with my cousins.

Thanksgiving table - 2008, 2009, 2010

Now, we’re all grown up, my grandparents have passed on and many of my older cousins have kids of their own. My uncle is now the one that says a special prayer before we eat. I also cannot remember a Thanksgiving where less than 15 people have been at the table and wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s also important to me that Geof is a part of everything and my family loves him like one of their own.

My aunt is also pretty amazing. She prepares the meal every year for the entire family and manages to get everything on the table hot and fresh. She’s one of the special people that will always make room for one more and ensure that no one leaves her home hungry.

I consider myself pretty lucky to have a great family to go “home” to every Thanksgiving. I wish and hope that you all have a Happy Thanksgiving and that you’re able to spend it with all the loved ones in your life.

Monday, November 21, 2011

I’m THANKful for My Favorite Thanksgiving Recipe!

It’s Day 6 of the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap

Manic Mother

Today’s topic is our favorite Thanksgiving recipe.

My aunt makes one of the best sides with our Thanksgiving dinner every year. It’s something I’ve never had up until she made it for the first time a few years ago and it’s her Baked Pineapple Casserole.

It’s sweet with a little bit of savory (from the cheese) and a nice little addition to the typical Thanksgiving plate with some turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes.

Here’s the recipe:

1 (28-ounce) can crushed pineapple, undrained
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 1/2 cups Ritz cracker crumbs
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
2 cups (8 ounces) grated cheddar cheese (plus 1/4 cup for topping)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Pour the crushed pineapple (juice and all) into a small saucepan, and warm it over low heat. Add sugar. Heat until the sugar is dissolved, and then remove from the heat.
3. In a casserole or baking dish, layer the pineapple mixture, cracker crumbs, butter and cheese. Repeat until you have three to four layers. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup cheese on top of the casserole.
4. Bake uncovered for about 20 to 25 minutes, until bubbly and golden brown.


Friday, November 18, 2011

I’m THANKful for the 21st Century

It’s Day 5 of the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap

Manic Mother


I honestly don’t know how I lived without my iPhone. I can check my email, Twitter, blogs, weather, Instagram (favorite app), etc. I’m sure a device like this would have been gawked at like something from an alien planet 50 years ago.


The internet has opened a whole new world of information and connections. You can stay in touch with loved ones via Facebook, blogs and Twitter use Google to find out an answer to just about anything and shop in your PJ’s.


Between planes, trains and automobiles, it’s much easier to get from A to B, which ranks high on my list since I love to travel. Although when I was a kid, I thought we might have flying cars Jetsons style at this point.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

I'm THANKful for the Blogoverse!

It’s Day 4 of the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap

Manic Mother

Today’s topic is the Blogoverse:

The blogoverse is something I’m very THANKful for. I never imagined that so many wonderful women, most of whom I’ve never met in real life could be such a big part of my life. I’m sincere when I say that this is an amazing community and I’m lucky to have made some real friendships because of it.

Besides all the great people are the wonderful ideas and inspiration. I’ve cooked meals based on your recommendations, made crafts from some of the pretty things I’ve seen you create and been motivated to do many things like put together nice outfits, try new things, workout (need to get back to that) and decorate. The list goes on and on.

I try not to get too negative on the blog and keep things pretty upbeat, because I’ve always said this is my happy place. With that said, my life is far from perfect, but I know that the blogoverse will always be here to bring a little sun on a rainy day. For that, I'm thankful, grateful and honored to be part of it.

I'll leave you with this text from by blog friend Gwen:

It really made me giggle. Her daughter is the cutest and the fact that she knows who I am cracks me up!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I'm THANKful for My Hometown!

It’s Day 3 of the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap.

Manic Mother

Today’s topic is My Hometown!

I’ve lived in my hometown, just outside of Philadelphia for most of my life. Living in this area, there is plenty to be THANKful for like…

Sporting and Entertainment Venues

Citizens Bank Park, Lincoln Financial Field and the Wells Fargo Center are so easy to get to for games and concerts. Citizens Bank Park is also a beautiful ballpark and pretty amazing to watch a game in.


This may sound silly, but it’s very nice living so close to an International Airport


Philadelphia is such a historic city. Sometimes I take for granted how many opportunities are right in my backyard. I need to start being more of a tourist in my own city


I can get to either of these states in a jiffy. It’s a nice convenience when looking for a change of scenery. It’s also easy to get to NY & MD if I want (another thing I need to take advantage of).

City/Country Balance

There’s a nice contrast between the city and suburbs. If you’re looking for trendy restaurants, unique stores and eclectic bars – you have the city. If you’re looking small vineyards, mom and pop shops and the great outdoors – there’s the county.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I’m THANKful for YouTube (and other internet fun)!

It’s Day 2 of the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap!

Manic Mother

Today’s topic is YouTube (and other internet fun)!

SafetySuit - Let Go

The best thing about YouTube is being able to find any song or music video at any time. It reminds me of what MTV used to be when I was a kid. With that said, I can watch SafetySuit’s new video for the song “Let Go” whenever I feel like it. For that, I am very THANKful!

Sophia Grace & Rosie on Ellen

The next best thing about YouTube is viral videos. There are so many that guarantee a laugh even when you’re in the worst mood. Sophia Grace and Rosie stole my heart when I saw them on Ellen.

Beauty Gurus

Another great thing about YouTube is the endless amounts of reviews and tutorials to learn to do your hair like this or your makeup like that. One of my favorite girls on YouTube is Michele1218. She’s classy and knows her stuff. I trust her reviews and love her style.


As far as other internet fun goes, I have to say that I’ve been very THANKful for Pinterest. The website has a ton of inspiration and lots of fun. It’s like getting a new virtual magazine every time you log on.

Monday, November 14, 2011

I’m THANKful for My Guilty Pleasures!

I’m participating in the Plenty To Be Thankful For Blog Challenge & Swap.

Manic Mother

Today’s topic is Guilty Pleasures!

Here are some that I’m Thankful for:

Reality TV

We all know that most reality shows kill brain cells, but after a long day of work it’s just the mind numbing thing I need to relax. I love the Real Housewives of just about anywhere and always get hooked on The Bachelor/Bachelorette.


Curling up with a good magazine never gets old.

Sleeping in late

Thank goodness for weekends. I love sleeping in late.

Painting my nails

It’s relaxing and pleasurable at the same time.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Fashion Friday – Reese Witherspoon

I’m linking up with Kori at Blonde Episodes for Fashion Friday. After seeing some photos of Reese Witherspoon at this year’s CMA Awards, I knew I wanted to share how much I adore her fashion sense. From casual to glam, she knows what she’s doing and rarely has a fashion miss.

One of my favorite things about her style is that her day-to-day outfits are very easy to replicate. Whether it be Wayfarers with a scarf or riding boots and denim, she’s effortlessly chic.

Reese presenting at the CMA Awards in Stella McCartney

Channeling Barbie at the Oscars and casual cool with a simple scarf and sunnies

Playing tourist in Sydney and then glam in Zac Posen for the Water for Elephants premiere

Gorgeous dress to meet the Duchess and grabbing takeout in Beverly Hills

Beautiful in Jason Wu at an Avon event and looking pulled together running errands

Leopard Dress & Blazer combo for an event in West Hollywood and looking good in stripes about town

Which celebrity inspires your style?