Revitalize Your Skin


Cold air, lack of sun, bundling up, means one thing…WINTER, which can also translate in to dull, pale, and even pasty skin (unless you’re in beautiful weather all year round…so jealous), which isn’t exactly “becoming.” Cold air, low humidity, and indoor heating combine to pull moisture from our skin, making us dry and lusterless. We should you how to keep your entire body moisturized this winter, but lets not forget what everyone sees the most: our face! This winter, revive your glow with these simple tips. Fake a summer vacation and get that refreshed, glowing look coveted all summer long; You’ll look as though you’ve been off for weeks!

Moisturize

 

  • Using a moisturizer is the most important aspect of any skin care regimen. If you don’t already do so, start! Slather on a rich, super moisturizing cream to instantly hydrate and plump skin. Look for one high in vitamins A, C, D, and E and oil-free as well to prevent clogging up pores. Moisturizers that include a sunscreen are an added bonus!
  • Moisturize your insides as well by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Green tea will also remove any unwanted impurities and help clear up your skin.
  • Don’t forget the sunscreen! It should be applied to dry skin 15 to 30 minutes before going outdoors, even in the winter.
  • Fill your sink with lukewarm or cool water and add a few drops of oil. Coconut oil and Almond Oil are great choices. Hold your breath and soak your face for as long as you can. Come up for air and keep soaking for about 3-5 minutes. Your skin loves to soak up water, and you probably know that after having a long bath your skin feels the most soft and smooth. Finish your soak by immediately applying a light, unscented facial moisturizer and either let your skin air-dry or gently pat dry with a towel.
  • Use cool water when washing your face to avoid over drying and it’ll  keep your skin looking fresh.

Food for Thought


Get a naturally sun-kissed look by applying bronzer to your entire face and a rosy blush just on the apples of your cheeks. Don’t overdo it though! Remember, less is more!

Keep it Clean

 

The number one rule of maintaining healthy looking and flawless skin is to keep your hands off it. Your hands and fingertips are crawling with bacteria. You don’t want this on your face and seeping into your pores. This is the number one way breakouts occur!!!!

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How To: Use Hashtags

If you know anything about us, you know that we love all things social media. From Twitter to Tumblr, Instagram to Facebook – we really don’t discriminate.

However, with the landscape of social media always influx, it’s hard to keep track of all that’s going on in the world. This is where hashtags come in. Hashtags are something you might be familiar with, particularly in Twitter. We are here to help you get up to speed using this super useful tool!

hashtag

Categorization

Hashtags are often used to categorize and group tweets to make it easier for people to follow a conversation, an event etc…

Next time you want to keep tabs on something, try searching for keywords in the search bar on Twitter. You’ll be pleasantly surprised to see the wave of information streaming your way.

Example: Tweets regarding the 2012 Presidential Debates used the hashtag #debates, to keep track of the online discussion.

Fun Fact: There were 7.2 million tweets during the second Presidential Debate – WOW

Discoverability 

Hashtags help get your tweet or Instagram photo discovered by others.

Some live by the philosophy that “the more hashtags, the better” and we’ve seen this trend especially on Instagram. We love hashtags and try and attach hashtags that we feel will peak people’s interests and let’s us share the things that inspire us seamlessly.

Example: #breakfast http://instagram.com/p/TGcG7WLQgN

Fun Fact: The most used hashtag on Instagram is (drum roll please)…. #love 

Have Fun 

There are no rules when it comes to social media, the beauty of it is that each person can make it their own – we love that.

Hashtag an inside joke with your friends or hashtag your own tweets so you can easily look back on it and see if anyone else joined in on your parade!

Example: http://go.totsy.com/WJ67nD #momsrule

Fun Fact: Beginning July 1, 2009, Twitter began to hyperlink all hashtags to search results containing all recent tweets mentioning the hashtag

Why I Love My Cast Iron Skillet

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For Christmas I received a 10″ Pre-seasoned Lodge Cast Iron Skillet.  At first glance, cast iron skillets might seem intimidating and they are heavy as heck!  I have to use two arms to lift the thing!  However, it really is worth the investment if you decide to purchase one. Here are 5 reasons why I love my cast iron skillet:

  1. Easy clean up:  You shouldn’t use soap on the iron skillet because it can strip away the seasoning. Just rinse with warm water and use a washcloth and salt to scrub if necessary and dry thoroughly to prevent rusting. Very important to apply a thin layer of oil after each cleaning.
  2. Multifunctional: take it camping. Transfer to the oven. Roast, fry, bake, braising, simmer, anything!
  3. Lasts forever: True that I’ve had it about 2 weeks now, but based on reviews and the tough material, I’m sure it will take me through a few decades and then some.
  4. Retains heat: Love this! I can prepare a dish and it will stay warm longer.
  5. Wide range of recipes:  Doing a quick search on Pinterest will pull up endless recipes to use with your cast iron skillet; cookies, pizza, baked eggs, etc!

Be sure to check back next Monday about how to care for your cast iron skillet.

Tell us, do you own a cast iron skillet?  How often do you use it?

How To: No Sew Pillow Cases

[sourc:www.jandofabrics.com]

 

New year, new beginnings, right? Correct! It may be a little too early for Spring cleaning, but who’s to say your home doesn’t need some freshening up? Not all of us have the budget to completely redecorate our homes for the new year, but there are are few tricks to add a breath of fresh air to your living space. One of our favorites is the No Sew Pillow Case. Yes, you read correctly, “no sew.” What could be better than that? If you’re sewing machine challenged just as we are, this DIY is right up your alley!

What you will need:

  • Standard throw pillow (preferably without any embellishments) 
  • A piece of fabric 3 times as wide plus a few more inches and twice as tall plus a few more inches as the pillow
  • Pinking shears

Steps

Use pinking shears to cut the fabric to avoid fraying.

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Start by folding the bottom half of the fabric to the center of the pillow.

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Then fold the top down to the center.

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Fold the edges of each end as if you’re wrapping a present.

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Bring one side over the top of the pillow. Repeat for the opposite side.

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Tie the ends in a square knot. To tie a square knot you take the fabric over-under then under-over.

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Voila!!

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Images courtesy of organizeyourstuffnow.com.

No Fuss New Years Eve

Okay so most of us are guilty of doing everything last minute for the holidays simply because there aren’t enough hours in the day! From running around at work to getting everyone’s presents, we sometimes forget the other details that make a holiday party special. After strenuous planning for Christmas and Hanukkah, some of us are pooped come New Year’s Eve! No need to stress though, we’ve got a few easy tips that even the least creative of us can do!

For the Home

Who doesn’t love candles? They smell wonderful and cast a beautiful glow in any living space. These simple (and cheap!) DIY candles are sure to sparkle at your NYE party!

DIY Metallic/Glitter Candles

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What you will need:

  • Dollar store candles (any color, size, shape you prefer)
  • Candle holders
  • Spray Adhesive
  • Glitter (any color you prefer)
  • Metallic Spray Paint (any color you prefer)
  • Painters tape

Directions

  1. If you simply want metallic candles, spray two coats of the spray paint, or enough until the original candle color isn’t showing and let dry overnight. I recommend doing this two days in advance.
  2. If you only want sections of colors, use the use painters tape to mark off the areas you’d like to have the candle base color show. You can get creative and create designs with the painters tape! Spray paint exposed areas and Voila!
  3. For glitter candles, pretty much the same concept applies.
  4. For full on glitter candles, spray the entire candle with spray adhesive and roll in glitter. Spray another coat and roll in glitter once more and let dry overnight. Again, I recommend doing this at least two days in advance.
  5. You can use the painters tape to section off areas of glitter.
  6. If you really want to get creative, combine both the metallic paint and glitter!

Your Outfit

 


Do sequins, but do it right! You don’t want to end up looking like the NYE ball in Times Square or a disco ball at that! From sequined dress, sweaters, skirts, shorts and pants, the possibilities are endless.

Too scared to full on sequins? Sequined flats or pumps add sparkle to your outfit without drawing a lot of attention.</p>

Sequins aren’t your thing at all? Dress up your LBD with a statement necklace or bracelet and a bright pair of pumps!

Drinks


Champagne is a must for NYE without a doubt!  Remember our Sparkling Cranberry recipe from Thanksgiving? Whip up a batch of these sugary berries and lay them in your champagne flutes and pour a little bubbly over! This recipe can be done with a variety of berries if cranberries don’t suit your fancy. Little kids and Mommies-to-be coming to the party? Substitute champagne for sparkling apple cider or ginger ale for the same bubbly effect!

Appetizer

 


Baked brie…looks complicated and time consuming, but is soooo easy!

Ingredients

  • 1 large sheet of puff pastry dough
  • Cranberry chutney
  • Round of brie (do not remove rind)
  • 1 cup of Candied walnuts
  • 1/4 of a cup Brown Sugar
  • Assortment of crackers and breads
  • Apple Slices

Steps

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. On a non stick cookie sheet, lay out the puff pastry
  3. Put the brie round on the puff pastry. Make sure it is centered.
  4. Spread cranberry chutney on the top, fold dough over top, creating a little pouch. Cut off excess dough.
  5. Top with brown sugar and candied walnuts
  6.  Bake at 350º for 25-30 minutes, pastry should be golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.
  7. Serve with crackers, bread and apple slices.

Party Essential

 

This one is super easy and I guarantee takes little to no time. Confetti bags! Yes, as childish as this may sound, it’s a cute way for your guests to let loose at midnight.

What you will need: 

  • Confetti, especially “2013” confetti
  • Clear plastic cellophane bags, preferably the smaller ones
  • Colorful ribbon

Simple fill the baggies with confetti, tie with ribbon to create a little pouch, and hand them out to your guests right before the countdown and let them go crazy at midnight!  Of course noise makers are a must too!

HAPPY NEW YEAR FROM THE TOTSY FAMILY!!!!!!!!!!

Memorable Moments of 2012 Bottled Up

The ball is dropping; the champagne is popping (or sparkling apple cider).It’s the second most wonderful time of the year! New Years! A time for new beginnings, new chapters, and a time to celebrate with the people most important in our lives. What better way to ring in the New Year than reflecting on the past year? If you’re throwing a NYE party or just spending a quiet evening at home, we’ve got a fun and easy way to get everyone involved and reflect on the most memorable moments of 2012.

NYE Memory Jar

What you will need:

  • A Mason jar or any empty container 
  • Sticky notes or Small pieces of paper
  • Different colored pens
  • A box of tissues (this could get emotional!)

If you’re throwing a NYE party, have your guests write down their most memorable moment of the year with their name and put it in the mason jar. Get the kids involved and help them write out their favorite memory of 2012. When everyone has contributed to the jar, read all of the memories aloud before the ball drops! You could even turn it into a guessing game, by not reading the names and have everyone try to figure out who wrote what! Make it a tradition and save the “memories” of each year the jar was brought out.

Even if you’re not having a NYE party and just spending a quiet evening at home, you can simply write down all your favorite aspects of the year and reflect with loved ones before midnight. No need to get the jar involved if you don’t want to.

There’s no need to make this more complicated than it is. Forget your holiday stress and the trials and tribulations of the past year. Hold onto the beautiful moments and life’s little blessings and surprises. NYE is not a time to think about how things may have gone wrong or could have gone much better as anticipated. Don’t completely toss the old year behind, rather take all the good things and bring them into 2013!

Happy New Year everyone!!!!

Totsy’s Top 5 Holiday Pins

Happy holidays! Nothing new, but you all know that we here at Totsy LOVE Pinterest!  We are practically addicted ;-).  We have rounded up out top 5 pins for the holidays!  These are just some of our favorites, but you can enjoy the holiday season with more pins from our Tis the Season board!

5) Heart- (and belly-warming) hot chocolateLove this idea! Put whipped cream on a cookie sheet, freeze, then use heart cookie cutter to cut out heart shapes.  Add to a steamy cup of hot chocolate!

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4) Candy cane tablescape. Perfect for the holiday season – simple and festive!

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3) Christmas tree cupcake.  How adorable is this??

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2) Winter cocktails. Our favorite? The hot toddy. Warms you from the inside out!  Find the recipe on our blog along with a few of our other favorite winter cocktails.

Glass of hot toddy with cinnamon and anise. Shallow dof.

1) Cutie holiday photo op. We couldn’t help but smile at this little snowman! Have you ever had a creative and festive photo op with your child?

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That’s all from us folks!  Don’t forget to follow and pin with us on Pinterest.

Share with us your favorite holiday pins by pasting in the comments below.

Happy holidays to your family from us here at Totsy!