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Super adorable (mostly no-sew) homemade Halloween costumes

2014 October 9
by Emily Hill

This post is totally for you, dear readers. You would be hard pressed to find me putting together homemade Halloween costumes even if it were of the “no sew” variety. Don’t get me wrong. I find them utterly and totally adorable, especially the owl costume (my favorite). I just don’t find myself utterly and totally homemade Halloween costume material. But many of you are, so here’s a collection of my favorite homemade costumes I’ve seen floating around the Interweb.


15 Homemade Halloween Costumes

Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds costume
I might make a grownup version of Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” costume from Simple Simon and Company.

photobooth strip costume
I’m loving this photobooth strip costume from Oh Happy Day.

owl Halloween costume
This owl Halloween costume from Darling Darleen is probably my favorite.

lumberjack costume
George would look so handsome in this lumberjack costume from Make It & Love It.

DIY tooth fairy costume
And Livi would love this DIY tooth fairy costume from 235 Designs.

garden gnome Halloween costume
I need another baby just so I can dress him up like a garden gnome thanks to Adventure in a Box.

no sew olaf costume
How adorable is this no sew Olaf costume from Crazy Little Projects?

no sew pumpkin tutu
Every little girl needs a no sew pumpkin tutu from Craft Passion.

DIY LEGO Movie costume
We’re fans of The LEGO Movie so this DIY LEGO Movie costume from Here Comes the Sun is a hit!

easy tin man costume
This easy tin man costume from Simply Kierste is one of my favorite from this year.

Boxtroll Halloween costume
This boxtroll costume from Red Ted Art is probably the easiest out of the bunch but no less cute.

homemade jellyfish costume
Hard to believe this jellyfish costume from Giggles Galore takes only 10 minutes!

DIY pineapple no sew baby costume
This DIY pineapple no-sew baby costume from Lines Across is crazy cute (so my teenagers would say).

felt monarch butterfly wings
How easy and beautiful are these felt monarch butterfly wings from Buggy and Buddy?

candy corn homeamde Halloween costume
This super simple yet super “sweet” candy corn costume from Duke & Duchesses makes me super happy.

If you’re like me and aren’t interested in handcrafting Halloween costumes this season, check out these awesome superhero costumes (Wonder Woman included) and Disney princess costumes I found on eBay. They’re amazing and affordable!


ps post script

Feel free to “like” is this REALLY my life? on Facebook. It won’t always earn you an extra entry in a giveaway but it will give you warm fuzzies.

Don’t forget to sign up for free is this REALLY my life? updates via RSS or email so you don’t miss a single awesome post.

We’d live off chips, salsa and guacamole if we could

2014 October 7
by Emily Hill

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Kroger PeakFection. Thoughts, opinions, and delicious salsa are 100 percent honest and all mine.

Actually, we probably could. Salsa has tomatoes, which are good for you. And guacamole has avocados, which are also good for you. So that’s lots of veggies, which means lots of vitamins. The chips are usually made with corn, so that counts as a veggie too. I’m pretty sure I should now make chips with a side of salsa and guac a weekly meal (outside Taco Tuesday).

About half the time I try to make my fire-roasted salsa and homemade guacamole, and the other half we go with store bought. What can I say? I like convenience and fresh, store-bought salsa and guacamole can really hit the spot. One of my newest discoveries is the PeakFection line from Kroger (or Smith’s if you’re in the UT). I’m really glad they sent our family a sample of both their salsa and guac because it’s really, really yummy.


PeakFection from Kroger - fresh salsa and guacamole

We had a family party for my birthday and the salsa and guacamole was inhaled in record time.


PeakFection from Kroger - yummy fresh salsa and guacamole

Of course, no one got to touch it until I took the photos. Nathan snapped this behind-the-scenes shot and posted it on Instagram without my knowledge.


emihill on Instagram

Sometimes when you’re making a meal like enchiladas or tacos, the last thing you want to do—or the last thing you remember to do—is make the salsa and guacamole. For that reason, keeping a package of each on hand in the fridge can be a Taco Tuesday lifesaver. Plus PeakFection uses fresh ingredients captured at the “peak of perfection” and a special cold-water process so they stay fresher longer. I had those packages in the fridge for a good couple weeks before we used them and they tasted as fresh as if they were made hours before.

PeakFection offers five (yes, five!) salsas (red in three spice levels, roasted in two spice levels) and two flavors of guacamole (traditional and spicy). As great as they are with chips, you can also use them to add a fresh and flavorful touch to lots of dishes.

Try PeakFection guacamole:

  • Atop burgers or hot dogs
  • On your favorite chicken, tuna or egg salad recipe
  • As a healthy substitute for mayo on sandwiches


Use PeakFection salsa:

  • To spice up chicken leftovers
  • As an addition to your breakfast burritos
  • In place of ketchup


You know what else PeakFection salsa and guacamole would be good with? Mexican lasagna.


Mexican lasagna


Or Cafe Rio sweet pork tacos.


Cafe Rio Pork Tacos


Or maybe cilantro garlic chicken quesadillas.


Cilantro garlic chicken quesadillas


I bet PeakFection would be super yummy on these crock pot chicken tacos. Go, Taco Tuesday!


Crock pot chicken tacos

What is your favorite way to eat salsa and/or guacamole?


ps post script

Feel free to “like” is this REALLY my life? on Facebook. It won’t always earn you an extra entry in a giveaway but it will give you warm fuzzies.

Don’t forget to sign up for free is this REALLY my life? updates via RSS or email so you don’t miss a single awesome post.

It’s like a symphony . . . and yes, it’s glorious

2014 October 3
by Emily Hill

I don’t know if you’ve heard but there’s a new movie coming out. It’s called Meet the Mormons.

Six ordinary individuals. Six extraordinary stories.

Meet the Mormons gives audiences a glimpse into the lives of six Latter-day Saints who live all over the world, from the U.S. to Nepal. They share their cultures, their challenges, their triumphs and their faith. I’m intrigued…and not because I’m Mormon. In a world where all news seems to be bad news, extraordinary stories are a welcome respite.

Or maybe I just want to see the movie because I’m in love with David Archuleta’s new song, “Glorious.”


These words speak to the soul no matter the faith:

There are times when you might feel aimless
You can’t see the places where you belong
But you will find that there is a purpose
It’s been there within you all along and when you’re near it
You can almost hear it

It’s like a symphony just keep listenin’
And pretty soon you’ll start to figure out your part
Everyone plays a piece and there are melodies
In each one of us, oh, it’s glorious


“Glorious” echoes the sentiments I shared in my post about being brave and beautiful.


What God Intended for You quote


YOU are brave.

YOU are beautiful.

YOU have a purpose.

And yes, it is glorious.


ps post script

Feel free to “like” is this REALLY my life? on Facebook. It won’t always earn you an extra entry in a giveaway but it will give you warm fuzzies.

Don’t forget to sign up for free is this REALLY my life? updates via RSS or email so you don’t miss a single awesome post.

Snap Conference 2015 tickets on sale TODAY!

2014 October 1
by Emily Hill

YES! TODAY! Are you doing the happy dance? You should be. I look forward to Snap Conference EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR.


Snap Conference logo

Snap Conference 2015

Top notch classes, inspiring keynotes, amazing women and off-the-hook parties.


Snap Conference 2015

Do people still say “off the hook”?

If you’re ready to buy your Snap Conference ticket NOW, click here. (They go on sale at 9:00 a.m..)

Here’s the skinny on ticket sales:

  • Regular early bird tickets (on sale TODAY) for bloggers will be offered for the $350 and will be available through December 1, 2014 or until tickets sale out.
  • Snap will once again be offering the awesome “First 50″ discount. This $100 discount is available to the first 50 individuals who buy blogger tickets using the code FIRST50.
  • Some bloggers may have a direct conflict with one or more Snap sponsors. This year there is an unsubsidized ticket for active bloggers who DO NOT want their ticket to be subsidized by the Snap 2015 sponsors. The cost of this ticket will be the actual per-person event cost of $695.
  • Tickets for individuals representing companies with more than five employees will be offered at $700.

Snap Conference often sells out in less than 48 hours. I highly recommend purchasing your ticket as soon as possible to ensure your spot.

For more information about Snap Conference, visit SnapConference.com. Details like schedule, speakers and sponsors will be updated as it gets closer to the conference.

SEE YOU THERE!


ps post script

Feel free to “like” is this REALLY my life? on Facebook. It won’t always earn you an extra entry in a giveaway but it will give you warm fuzzies.

Don’t forget to sign up for free is this REALLY my life? updates via RSS or email so you don’t miss a single awesome post.

T-Rex busts a robotic move & becomes the must-have toy for the holidays

2014 September 30
by Emily Hill

Disclosure: This is a compensated post for Zoomer Dino and TapInfluence. Thoughts, opinions, and super cool video of the dino in action is 100 percent honest and all mine.

What’s cooler than cool?

Dinosaurs.

What’s cooler than that?

Robotic dinosaurs.

Unless they get angry because you’ve drained their battery playing with them all afternoon.


Zoomer Dino angry

But you can easily solve that with a bit of juice via USB cable.


Zoomer Dino charged

Yeah, that’s Boomer, a robotic dinosaur. As far as George is concerned, it’s the best thing since sliced bread…Grandma Sycamore sliced white bread* to be exact.

Don’t believe me? Check out what happened when he discovered he’d be helping me review the new Zoomer Dino from Spin Master Toys:


That kid busted the Zoomer Dino from its cardboard container in record time. And then we read the instructions in record time because I was about to go crazy from the kid’s questions.


Zoomer Dino review

“How does it work? What does it do? Does it move? Does it make noise? Do I get to keep it? Is it mine or do I have to share?”

Dude. You gotta share. It’s too cool not to. Your dad would be super sad if you didn’t. Plus, look how curious this guy is. He needs all the play he can get.


Zoomer Dino review

We got Boomer out of his box and quickly had him up and running. Half the fun was discovering what the robotic dino could do. The other half was watching him in action.


I’m pretty sure this was George’s favorite review. And maybe Nathan’s too.

Here’s a bit more about Zoomer Dino Boomer. I thought it might better prepare you for when your kids will be adding it to their holiday wish list.


Zoomer Dino

  • Only you can tame Boomer; he can sense where you are and what you’re doing.
  • Boomer uses real dinosaur movements, sounds and incredible “dino-sense abilities” to detect when you’re nearby.
  • Boomer perfectly balances while roaming freely around your home (this was Nathan’s favorite feature).
  • If you pull his tail, he can get pretty angry. Watch out!
  • You can use your hands or the controller to tame his animal nature and build a friendship.
  • Boomer is the perfect pre-historic pet for kids ages 5 and up.


You can find Zoomer Dino online at ZoomerDino.com. You can also find him bustin’ a move as one of the stars on the . For more Zoomer Dino news, “like” Zoomer on Facebook.


* I only buy Grandma Sycamore bread as a treat when I head out of town. Because they’ve been raised on whole grain bread (Aspen Mills is our fave), it’s basically like dessert in sandwich form.

So what do you think? Would your kids enjoy Zoomer Dino Boomer? Do you think you’ll add it to your holiday shopping list?


ps post script

Feel free to “like” is this REALLY my life? on Facebook. It won’t always earn you an extra entry in a giveaway but it will give you warm fuzzies.

Don’t forget to sign up for free is this REALLY my life? updates via RSS or email so you don’t miss a single awesome post.

Because we ARE brave and beautiful

2014 September 29
by Emily Hill

I Am Brave and Beautiful

A beauty movement sweeping the globe.

Colbie Caillat started it with her recent song “Try.” My friend Megan of Brassy Apple wanted to push this movement along and invited women from all over to share what they looked like without makeup. I couldn’t wait to participate.

I love these lyrics from Colbie’s song:

Take your make-up off
Let your hair down
Take a breath
Look into the mirror, at yourself
Don’t you like you?
Cause I like you

Megan and her friend Cobi of Peacefrom6pieces are the team behind this project. Their vision included creating a video inspired by “Try.” The talent of Robbins Creative helped make it happen. Watch the video and see these beautiful and brave women.

If you look closely, you’ll see some familiar faces.


I have joined over 100 blogging women from various backgrounds, religions, ethnicities, ages, shapes and sizes who have made the decision to be BRAVE and BEAUTIFUL. You can join the movement—and I hope you do—by sharing what you look like without makeup. Snap a photo and upload to Instagram; include the #IamBraveAndBeautiful hashtag. (You can search the hashtag to see everyone who is participating.) If you tag it with #ColbieTRY, we might be able to get Colbie Caillat’s attention. After all, she was the inspiration for the project.

Are you brave and beautiful? I am…and so are my girls.

What the world usually sees (all dolled up).


Emily Hill headshot - isthisREALLYmylife.com

Hill family Hill family

What the world needs to see (au naturel).

#IAmBraveAndBeautiful

Photography by Lindsay Black (@lindsayblack_cfcdesign on Instagram)

#IAmBraveAndBeautiful

#IamBraveAndBeautiful

I remember when Madison, almost 17, was little and would watch me put on my makeup in the morning. One day she asked me, “Mommy, why do you wear makeup?” I replied something along the lines of, “It makes me look better, makes me prettier.” Her response? “You don’t need to wear makeup to look pretty. You’re already pretty! And I’m not going to wear makeup when I grow up. I think it’s silly.”

Fast forward a dozen years or so and my girls wear makeup more often than I do. But on the days they don’t, they’re still absolutely stunning. And I tell them they’re beautiful—and amazing and intelligent—as often as I can, for I fear the world will have them think otherwise. Though I am fairly comfortable in my skin (with or without makeup), my girls are navigating the crazy waters of high school, mean girls, dumb boys and all. As their mom, I’m trying my best to arm them with a self-confidence that will help them feel brave and beautiful no matter the challenges they may face.


share your natrual beauty - brassyapple.com

Now it’s your turn to join the movement.

You can start by clicking around—it’s a blog hop! Below are more brave and beautiful women sharing their natural beauty—and their hearts—with you. Some share stories; most get personal. Being brave and beautiful isn’t always easy but we gathered our courage and did it anyway. We hope as you click around (and hopefully pin various posts) you will feel the project’s importance.

Let it empower and encourage you.

YOU are brave and beautiful.

*** Blog hops often have glitches the first day. If a link doesn’t work, click on the “home” button for each site or search the blog name. Their post should pop right up. Links will be updated as soon as possible. ***

women sharing their natural beauty - no makeup

1. BrassyApple 2. Peace from 6 Pieces 3. Is this Really My Life 4. Among the Young 5. Love Me Dani Marie 6. Sweet Charli 7. Kim Orlandini 8. XO, Ashton Tilton 9. She Calls Me Mama Leisha 10. Raising Memories – Canada 11. A Little Tipsy 12. Amy Cornwell 13. A girl and a glue gun 14. My Craftily Ever After 15. Maybe I Will 16. WhipperBerry 17. Paging SuperMom 18. All Things Thrifty 19. Ashlee Marie 20. The Project Girl

women with our makeup on and what makes them beautiful

21. One Little Momma 22. Entirely Eventful Day 23. Diary of a Brown Eyed Girl 24. Tips from a Typical Mom 25. Utah Sweet Savings 26. Flats to Flip Flops 27. One Krieger Chick 28. What Meegan Makes 29. Simply Kierste 30. Live to be Inspired 31. HoneyBear Lane 32. Pretty Providence 33. Ma Nouvelle Mode – in FRANCE 34. MomEntity 35. Serger Pepper – in ITALY 36. Kiki and Company 37. Girl Loves Glam 38. Thrive

women from around the world share their face with no makeup on - BrassyApple.com

39. The Potters Place 40. Crafting in the Rain 41. Cooking With Ruthie 42. Delineate Your Dwelling 43. The Pennington Point 44. Bakerette 45. The Happy Scraps 46. Shannon Baird Photography 47. Tried and Tasty 48. Lionesses at the Gate 49. Fry Sauce and Grits 50. Lolly Jane 51. That’s What Che Said 52. Sugar Bee Crafts 53. Your HomeBased Mom 54. Happiness is Homemade 55. The Crafted Sparrow 56. R&R Workshop 57. I Should Be Mopping the Floor 58. Sassy Steals

Mommy bloggers share their face without makeup and what makes then beautiful

59. Let’s Eat Grandpa 60. Being Spiffy 61. Sumo’s Sweet Stuff 62. Ginger Snap Crafts 63. Bless This Mess 64. Apronista 65. Dreaming About Someday 66. Frenchie 67. Tastefully Frugal 68. Four Marrs and One Venus 69. Your Sister Circle 70. Over the Big Moon 71. See Vanessa Craft 72. Infarrantly Creative 73. Family StoryTelling

Natural beauty untouched photos

74. Albion Gould 75. Life as Mrs. Larson 76. Tried and True 77. Play.Party.Pin. 78. Bite of Delight 79. Ink Happi 80. ObSEUSSed 81. U Create 82. My Mommy Style 83. Find it Make it Love it 84. The Contractor Chronicles 85. Novae Clothing 86. Mommy Makes Things 87. At Home with Sweet T 88. We Like to Learn As We Go 89. House for Five 90. Organize and Decorate Everything 91. Sassy Southern Gurl 92. The Creative Mom 93. Keep Moving Forward with Me

raw natural beauty - join the movement

94. The Benson Street 95. Mom 4 Real 96. Sowdering About 97. illistyle 98. The Crafty Blog Stalker 99. A Fiery Red Life 100. Cupcakes & Crowbars 101. One Sweet Appetite 102. My DayLights 103. Restless Risa

beauty and bravery - women wearing no makeup - Brassyapple.com

104. Sypsie Designs 105. Vintage Mother 106. Like Mother Like Daughter 107. 30 Handmade Days 108. Queen B and Me 109. Apples by Ashley 110. Boutique Cafe – in CANADA 111. Just My Little Mess 112. Bombshell Bling 113. Sarah Tyau 114. Taradara Make it 115. Capturing Joy 116. Ivory Lime Photography 117. Jenkins Kid Farm 118. Free Time Frolics 119. Bella Storia 120. Dana Ohlsen Photography

#colbietry #iambraveandbeautiful

Ready to join in? Snap, tag and share! Tag @BrassyApple and @Peacefrom6Pieces too!

You can slso follow our Bravery and Beauty PINTEREST board for more inspiration!

ps post script

Feel free to “like” is this REALLY my life? on Facebook. It won’t always earn you an extra entry in a giveaway but it will give you warm fuzzies.

Don’t forget to sign up for free is this REALLY my life? updates via RSS or email so you don’t miss a single awesome post.

Make the everyday a little bubblier and a lot more enjoyable {GIVEAWAY}

2014 September 26
by Emily Hill

Disclosure: This is a compensated post; the prize was provided by The Coca-Cola Company. Coca-Cola is not a sponsor, administrator or connected in any other way with this campaign. Thoughts, opinions, and undying love for—and addiction to—Diet Coke is 100 percent true. Except the addiction part. I can stop any time I want.

I think.


It’s no secret I’m a fan of Diet Coke. I use it to celebrate, meditate and even collaborate.

You’ll find Diet Coke a must at every “business” lunch.

You could even say I’m a superfan because I share my love of Diet Coke (and pebble ice) with all my friends on all the social media. It’s pretty much heaven in a glass. Or plastic cup. Or Styrofoam container, which is the best way to keep your Diet Coke chilled for hours.

Why do I love it so? For starters, it tastes divine. And it has caffeine which is a blogger’s best friend. Oh, and it’s all bubbly and bubbles make me happy. All of those things combine to make for a magical beverage that makes my day a heck of a lot more enjoyable. But how does Diet Coke do it? Inquiring minds wanted to know so I asked Diet Coke just how it makes the everyday “taste” so good.

Here’s what he said.*


Diet Coke in the kitchen


Diet Coke in the office


Diet Coke in carpool


Diet Coke in the bath


Diet Coke with a book

Let’s be honest. A Diet Coke with a good book is about as good as it gets.

Although Diet Coke didn’t tell us exactly how he does it (and may have exaggerated a bit), the bubbly beverage certainly has a way of sweetening life’s everyday activities.

And not-so-everyday activities like the occasional economy class flight as portrayed in “Economy Class,” one of Diet Coke’s TV spots for their newly launched “Get A Taste” (#GetATaste) campaign.


Pretend that girl is me and the airplane is the chaos that is my home on a weekday afternoon and when I take a sip of the Diet Coke I’m suddenly in a fluffy robe lounging by a hot tub with cucumbers on my eyes, fresh polish on my toes and not a whiny child—or husband—to be found.

*sigh*

Lucky for you, Diet Coke would love to give you a glimpse into what life would look like if it tasted as good as Diet Coke.

It’s time for the UH-MAZING giveaway! You may want a Diet Coke in hand to celebrate the awesomeness you’re about to read.

Diet Coke wants to help YOU make the everyday extra bubbly. To do so, they’re giving one lucky ITRML reader a prize valued up to $1,000!


You can enter this giveaway using the Rafflecopter widget below. The mandatory entry (see widget) asks you to share what would help you get a taste of the good life—something that would make your life a little brighter, bubblier and way more enjoyable…just like my beloved Diet Coke. Maybe it’s a round-trip ticket to visit your sister or VIP tickets to an upcoming concert complete with limo ride. Or maybe you’d love a new fall wardrobe including an amazing pair of Jimmy Choos.

Okay, maybe that’s just me.

The winner will be given their chosen “taste of the good life” (a value up to $1,000). I can’t wait to hear your ideas! Good luck!


* I’m not sure Diet Coke is a “he” but after this Diet Coke ad, I’m going with it. You’re welcome.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

ps post script


Feel free to “like” is this REALLY my life? on Facebook. It won’t always earn you an extra entry in a giveaway but it will give you warm fuzzies.

Don’t forget to sign up for free is this REALLY my life? updates via RSS or email so you don’t miss a single awesome post.