Update // Review of Bella Organics

Monday, May 18, 2015

You know how life gets all chaotic and crazy and you don't know where one to-do list starts and the other one ends? Well, that has been my life for the better part of this past year. My senior year of college got ridiculously busy with deadlines, requirements, and working. I can now say that I made it through it though, and I am one happy Bachelors of Science recipient! At some point this summer I will be taking my state boards and starting a job as a full time registered nurse! Yay! I am literally so excited!
With all that being said, I would like to get back into blogging (on my own schedule that is!) I want to enjoy my time, friends, and family, and as I have always said in my blog posts, I will write when I find inspiration and free-time! That is one great thing about having a blog; you can write posts when you would like, and if someone out there in bloggyland finds interest in your writing, then great-I would love to entertain you with my posts! Now that all of that is out of the way, I want to share a brand with you that I have absolutely been loving for a few months!

Bella Organics 
 " Bella Organics was founded in 2012 in response to a growing concern for the severe lack of all-natural and organic skincare products available. Our mission statement is simple: We believe that we should take care of our bodies, and in turn, our bodies will take care of us. That’s why Bella Organics products will never contain water, emulsifiers, or any of the toxic or unnatural ingredients that are found today in most mass-market products". -The Bella Organics website
A few months back, the Bella Organics company reached out to me to see if I would be interested in trying out a few of their products, since I am trying to change over all of my skincare and makeup to more natural, less harsh/chemical filled products. After looking through their site, I decided the company was one that does align with my concerns in the ingredients in products, so I went ahead and said yes to their email. After having these products for months (literally), I think I have a good opinion on them!

The products I received were the Jasmine & Honey Hydrating Face Cream, the Iced Lemonade Deodorant Creme, the Shea Butter & Sunflower Hand Cream, and Coconut Lime Lip Balm.

The Coconut Lime Lipbalm was probably the product I enjoyed the least; not to say it was a bad product, but compared to the other items I was sent, it was a little lackluster. It did moisturize my lips, but it could be compared to any run of the mill chapstick (except its 100% organic!)

The Iced Lemonade Deodorant Creme was realllly interesting to try out-I found it to control excess sweat, mask any odor, and just be an all around enjoyable product. The scent of this stuff is amazing! I mean the name of the scent is so spot on...I just wanted to eat it! (Don't worry, I didn't!)

The Shea Butter & Sunflower Hand Cream was a nice product; I found it to moisturize my hands and cuticles pretty well, but it was a bit greasy. Since it still is a good product, I work around the greasiness by using it before bed, which means I wake up with soft hands!

The Jasmine & Honey Hydrating Face Cream is the total star here! I was blown away the first time I used this. As you can see in the picture, the product has a whipped-like texture (as does the deodorant and hand cream). When the product is taken out of the container, within seconds it sort of melts down(probably due to all the oils in it). After applying it to my face, it does feel a bit greasy, but I sometimes find that I am using way too much-you only need a small amount to cover your whole face. It does absorb into the skin (but if I am too impatient, I just blot off the excess). Once absorbed, my skin feels soooo soft and healthy...but this isn't even the best part! When I wake up after a night with this stuff on, my skin feels plump, soft and brighter all around. Until today, I had only used this at night before bed, because I thought it would be too moisturizing for daytime. In order to give a good review, I decided to use it as a daytime moisturizer. I am definitely happy about how it works during the day too; using this cream seems to help balance out all my extra face oils (your girl right here is usually an oil slick!) This product would be great for dry skinned and oily girls alike!

Overall, I am super impressed with this brand, and would order from them in the future. If you are interested in natural, non-toxic, organic skincare products, I definitely recommend looking into this brand!

Thanks for reading!
XO, Kelsey

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**The Bella Organic products were sent to me free of charge; I was not paid nor guided to say anything about these products. All opinions shared are my own.

byTavi experience//making an impact [outfit post]

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Hey lovelies! I recently had the opportunity to attend a fashion show event/women's retreat to raise awareness about a very sensitive and heartbreaking cause-human trafficking. Specifically, this event addressed human trafficking in Cambodia. Before the fashion show (which showcased items from the byTavi line-more on that later), lunch was provided, informative videos were shown, and a few speakers took their turns speaking to us. Afterwards, their was a trunk show and booths where other causes were presented, allowing for even more knowledge of how we can make a difference in so many different causes. It is heartbreaking to know that human trafficking occurs-around the world, and even in my state. It is my hope that by sharing with you this post, you too can help make an impact in giving these women a voice and changing the outcome of so many of their lives.

What is Center for Global Impact? (CGI)
Quite simply they want to "Empower the poor, protect the vulnerable, and share the gospel". When it comes to their mission,
"Center for Global Impact seeks to bring the Good News of Jesus to those in the grip of poverty and bondage through education, vocational training and business development. Primarily working in Cambodia, many of those we serve are victims of — or vulnerable to — human trafficking".   
What is byTavi?
ByTavi is a project of CGI where vulnerable women in Cambodia are offered "vocational training, consistent employment, and a living wage". With this training, the women learn how to make "high quality, boutique style handbags and clothing". Beyond this, they also receive life skills and spiritual formation opportunities.  All products made are marketed in the USA-all proceeds return to CGI projects. 

Who is Tavi?
  "When Tavi came to CGI in 2008, she found herself in a desperate situation. Her husband recently taken by AIDS, she was the sole caregiver of her two young children and an elderly aunt. Being HIV positive, she was weak and had no resources to sufficiently care for herself, let alone her family. Aware of her culture’s common acceptance of trafficking children to make ends meet, she desperately sought a better solution.
 Chum Tavi
She approached CGI and requested a sewing machine and seamstress training. Three short years after she began sewing pillow covers, she had inspired over thirty other women in her community to join a sewing team, whose products were to be labeled byTavi".
It is so inspiring to me that one woman could seek out help to change her situation, in turn changing so many other lives. Today,  byTavi helps women "realize and reach" their full potential. Women spend time in retreats, receive seamstress training, and have other responsibilities in the workshop. Through all this, they become freed from the bondage of absolute poverty.
 Shop byTavi here.
Read more about CGI here.
Below are a few pictures I snapped throughout the lunch portion/fashion show portion of the event. Unfortanetly, my seat and view were a bit obstructed by the microphone and the podium, but I was still able to get a few pictures in. Most of them are blurry, because these ladies were on the move! It is hard to label all pictures with what item form byTavi each woman is wearing, so just know that in each picture, either a dress, top, bag, scarf, or skirt is being worn. If you visit the byTavi website, you will be able to see the items shown! These pictures are geared more toward those that attended the event-I had some requests to try to document some of the outfits! I did my best! I had an amazing time at the event and hope you are inspired and interested in the cause just as I was!

If you know me, you know I couldn't resist the desserts after lunch! I didn't get a picture of all the lunch foods, but I couldn't miss out on a picture of yummy cookies!
 Checking out the outfits before the show!
Clockwise: Ava Ritter-who personally invited me and who was a HUGE part of helping to coordinate and put together the event. Beth, the coordinator as well-and hilarious woman, I must add! Kim Anthony, a former U.S. National Team Gymnast; she was the first African American female to be recruited and receive a scholarship to compete for UCLA's gymnastics team. She is also a keynote speaker and author. Her new book is called Unfavorable Odds and can be found here. It tells more of her life story so far. Everyone who spoke during this event had an amazing story, and I feel so blessed that I got to hear these amazing ladies speak, and to learn more about human trafficking. 

[The clothes]
In this set of pictures the items by byTavi are (clockwise): the tunic, the skirt, the top, the top, and the scarf (worn as a top!)
 In this set of pictures the items by byTavi are (clockwise): Scarf and purse, skirt, top, dress, and dress.
 The trunk show and other causes being presented; as you can see, byTavi has plenty of scarves, purses/bags/totes, and coin purses. IN LOVE!
 After seeing all the items at the show, I couldn't resist making some purchases and giving to a great cause. The white top is byTavi. I also bought a scarf at the show.
 Watch brand is DKNY.
 The bracelet is from Express, earlier in the winter season.
 My booties are Jessica Simpson, purchased from T.J. Maxx. I can't find these exact boots, but these are VERY similar.
 As you can see, this byTavi top was part of their "Imprint Collection".
 My necklace is very old, but I know it was purchased at Forever 21. This is a very similar necklace, although it is not as bright!
 I hope this event recap was interesting and fun for anyone reading it. If you want to learn more about CGI or byTavi, click here and here!
***This event took place at the Hilton Garden Inn in Beavercreek/Dayton, Ohio. Lunch was prepared by the chef at the hotel and holy cow-it was amazing!

 Thanks for reading!
XO, Kelsey

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Update//plans and rambling!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

It's officially 2015! I can't believe that it is almost February... seriously, where has the time gone? 2014 was a great year for me, with awesome opportunities, life changes, and memories made. I am so excited to see what 2015 brings-in just about 4 months, I will be a college graduate, preparing to take my state board NCLEX exam to become Kelsey, RN, BSN. WHAT?! With everything being said, wow... I have been super busy. I find myself missing this blog, because I love writing, reviewing, and "meeting" people through the blog world. I haven't had a lot of free time to devote to blogging this previous semester, but I think that will change this semester! I am so excited to go back into blogging.

 If you have been following me on here for awhile, you will know I spent a lot of time reviewing mineral/natural products over the past year and a half. Wellllll, that is pretty much one of my main focuses now! I am very interested in purging all of my old, chemical laden products, and slowly replacing them with non-toxic, natural, eco-friendly alternatives. If you love topics like that, I think you will be interested in what I have to post over the next year! I also have spent a lot of time changing up my diet and lifestyle; I want to feel my best, and be the healthiest version of me that I can be. My whole life, I have had cardiac issues and other health problems, and I have really had to deal with those things over the past year-so being as healthy and happy as I can be is something that means a lot to me. Look forward to fun recipes on here, as well as an occasional outfit post!

Lately, I have been into staple outfit pieces that you can dress up or down. I like the idea of creating a simple wardrobe that can be versatile, accessorized, and minimal. The thought of downsizing everything is something that has been on my mind a lot lately; I feel as though sometimes, you can have too much! I hold on to clothing from 6-8 years ago, because it still fits, and "maybe I will need it one day!" But how is it useful at all if it has sat in my closet, untouched for 2 years? Looking at websites such as H&M (for basic tees/leggings), Simons (dresses), Tobi (for sweaters/dresses), Loft (for blouses/sweaters), and Banana Republic (for sweaters/accessories/other basics) has given me a lot of inspiration for basic outfit items that can be worn in SO many combinations-just what I would like! Also, I recently discovered the world of outlet shopping. Oh.My.Gosh. Why did I never go before a few months ago? You can find so many "in style" pieces at the outlets, and barely have to spend money! Example: I went to the Banana Republic and J Crew outlet and got 2 mens button ups, a sweater, a casual jacket, 4 shirts, and a pair of Nikes for around $115. To me, that is a great deal for those brands. (I had to share that story because I went around telling all my friends and family how excited I was for those deals for about a week straight after that, haha).

Now that this post is all over the place, I think I have said enough for now! My next post will be a review, although I am not sure which product I want to share first! My question for you is: What type of posts interest you the most? Do you like beauty/skincare posts? Fashion posts? Recipes or fitness posts? Please share!

Until next time!
XO, Kelsey

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