Monthly Archives: July 2018

My Summer Evening Skincare Routine

My Summer Evening Skincare Routine

As we have already established, I am a fan of a good skincare routine. I am equally a sucker for articles about what other people use to care for their skin, which is why I read every article I see about other peoples skincare regimes. I also read every “what’s in my purse” article, and I don’t know why, it’s like catnip.

Here is a post about my current morning routine. My Summer Morning Skincare Routine.  My definition of a good skincare routine means it’s easy, effective, affordable and nothing smells weird. Let’s talk about end of the day skincare for a bit.

First off, not to get too personal, but one thing you need to know about me is that I am a night showerer.  I would love to say I do it to wash the cares of the day away, but truth is I am fairly lazy and like to sleep as late as possible, so I ain’t got time for no morning showers.    So whilst I am in my evening shower, I wash my face and use the following products.


I have two cleansers that I use interchangeably, Cetaphil and Cera Ve.  These are two brands almost every dermatologist recommends, so I generally base my decision on the price variable.  If it’s on sale, or I have a coupon, that’s the one I get.  Just as an aside, I would also give a shout out to Noxema, the cleanser of my youth.  If you have oilier skin, there is nothing nicer than the gentle tingle of the product in the bright blue jar.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser  or Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser




After drying off, I use the same serum I use in the morning Buffet from The Ordinary line.  This stuff is fantastic, and is about the most reasonably priced serum you will find out there.


The Ordinary Buffet Serum





Eye Cream

Everyone needs a good eye cream, I alternate between Mario Badescu’s Glycolic Eye Cream in the warm months and their Dermonective Eye Cream in the cold months.

Mario Badescu Glycolic Eye Cream





Seriously where are you going to find a Retinoid for $21?  The Abnormal Beauty Company, that’s where. Crazy right, but it’s true and it works really well.


The Ordinary Retinoid 5%





Night Cream

I found this face cream when we went to France and I fell in love.  It’s kind of hard to find, but they have it on Amazon.  It is a little pricey, but is a luxury I allow myself.  This cream is light, smells really good and absorbs quickly into the skin.  I truly love it.

Fragonard Royal Jelly Face Cream 




Hand Cream

The gold standard of hand creams is L’Occitane, I should know since I have tried everything on the market.  I request this from my mom every Christmas.  My favorite is the Vanilla, but it only comes in a small tube.


L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream




Lip Balm

This is probably my favorite DoTerra product.  Lord knows I have purchased enough of it.  They have 3 flavors, original which is orange and peppermint, tropical and herbal.  My favorite is tropical.


DoTerra Lip Balm





That’s it for my summer evening routine.  I would love to hear about what products other people use and love.

Ciao for now,



***Just so you know, this is not a sponsored post, but it does contains affiliate links.  If you use one of the links to actually purchase a product, I may receive a small commission on the sale.  If that is an issue, you can simply search for the product by name and purchase it from any other source, I am just happy to share my experiences with these products.***




Thred Up, My Experience

Thred Up, My Experience

Anyone who reads my posts knows how I feel about Stitch Fix, spoiler alert, love it, here’s a link to one of my Stitch Fix Reviews if you want to know how much June Stitch Fix Review But when I talk about Stitch Fix, I notice a lot of confusion with Thred Up, the fashion resale website which I also use. Here is a review of my Thred Up experiences.

stitch fix thred up

Stitch Fix-clothes, great graphics, comes in a box

People are always confusing Stitch Fix and Thred Up, I think it’s because they both deal with clothes, have amazing branding and use a kicky greenish color in their logos.  But the two companies could not be more different.

Thred Up-clothes, great graphics, also comes in a box, I see the problem

Stitch Fix is a wardrobe service which sends you new clothes every month to try on and possibly purchase.  Conversely, you send gently used clothing to Thred Up, in return they either give you money or credit which you can use to purchase other used clothing on their site.

I have used Thred Up several times now, and I feel I have enough experience to give an honest review. The first time I used Thred Up, I was on a full Kondo inspired purge of my closet and had just heard of the service so I gave it a try.




If you are not familiar with Thred Up, this is how it works.  You request a clean out bag on their site and in about a week you receive this adorable polka-dot bag in the mail.  You then proceed to fill up this mammoth bag with gently used, name brand clothing and mail it back to the company.

Thred Up clean out bag

Seriously, this bag holds a metric ton of stuff

The bags will fit A LOT of clothes, a warning, your postman/woman may not love this, it can get really heavy.  You might consider taking it directly to the post office, because if you work in an office like me, and leave it with the other mail, the brightly colored bag is not exactly discreet.

Once Thred Up receives the bag, they process it and send you an email outlining what they accepted and the assigned sales prices.  They may pay you upfront for some items and take others as consignment sales.

You will immediately have credit in your account for the upfront items, or you can request PayPal credit or a prepaid Visa card.  With consignment sales, you can monitor items and either adjust prices or reclaim an item during the 84 day consignment period. If you reclaim an unsold item within 14 days of the end of the consignment period, you pay the shipping costs, if you don’t, Thred Up owns it.

How my Thred Up Bags fared.

In November of 2016 I sent in a bag stuffed to the gills.  I remember it took a really long time for them to process it, but when they did, I received $73.45 upfront and I was thrilled.  After paying the $6.99 shipping fee, I had $66.46 to play with.

I used that credit, plus a 20% coupon code, to score a Tomas Maier (former head of Bottega Veneta) red leather handbag that retailed for $850.00.  It was a great trade and I was very happy with my experience. That bag is still in my handbag rotation.

Bag Number Two

My second bag was in January 2017.  Again, I packed up a big green and white bag with some of my best used stuff and sent it on its way.  This time the processing was much quicker, but the upfront payout was only $36.80.  Some of the items went to consignment with potential sales of $58.64.

By the end of the consignment period all but two items had sold, so I ended up with $91.09 in total sales.  After paying the shipping fee, which had increased to $9.99 by then, because giant bag, I netted $81.10. Not too bad, I was really getting the hang of this Thred Up thing.

Bag Number Three

The third time I used Thred Up was in February of 2018.  Having had two great experiences I gleefully filled up another bag and sent it in, I was after all, a Thred Up pro at this point.  The processing was lighting fast this time, however, I was shocked when the upfront payout was only $14.50.  Not to fear I still had a potential $51.33 in consignment.  Everything was going to be fine.

Not so fast there cowgirl. This time I was not so lucky. Despite adjusting my consignment prices down several times, I only received $23.03.  My total on that bag was a disappointing $37.53.

Bag Number Four

Determined to rebound, I put together a more curated bag which I sent in May 2018.  Following the guidelines of what they were looking for, I was sure this bag would do well.  Cue the sad trombone music.  On my last bag I got zero dollars upfront and potential consignment sales of $27.40.  So far one item has sold and my portion of that sale is $4.68.  Super disappointing.

It is entirely possible the items I sent were neither the brands or quality they are looking for, but I doubt it.  I was pretty careful not to send dated or excessively used items. In fact, some of the items they rejected were new, brand name items, with the tags still attached.  So I am not really sure where it all went wrong.

Bottom line, I will probably not be using Thred Up again. Since I strongly believe in the concept of fashion resale, I would not go so far as to discourage others from trying this service. However, I think in the future I will take my items to thrift shops run by local charities and try to keep the money in my community.

Have any Thred Up experiences to share?  I would love to hear other people’s stories.



My Summer Morning Skincare Routine

My Summer Morning Skincare Routine

It goes without saying that I am not a very girly-girl; and, clearly will never be mistaken for a super model, so makeup is not really my thing.  However, I am all about skincare products.  I am a total sucker for articles about what skincare products other people use, so here is a review of my summer morning skincare routine.

When it comes to my skin, I have been fortunate to be blessed with good genes.  They come from my mother who easily passes for 10-15 years younger that she is. I am always searching for the perfect skincare routine, one that is not too complicated or expensive, but is effective and easy to stick to.

Since I have very fair (practically translucent) skin, I don’t tan.  Instead I burn, and when the burn subsides, I don’t get cute freckles, I get big, weird blotches.  Sunscreen is an everyday thing for me. I use it in my moisturizer, foundation and the mineral veil finishing powder, so with all my layers I figure I am at about an SPF of 750. Aside from that, here are the products I am currently using each morning.

Morning Skincare Routine

oil of olay micellar water

Wash with Micellar Water– I found micellar water when we went to France last year.  Apparently, the water in France is full of minerals and hard on the face. So the French, in all their international wisdom, developed this water with microscopic oils that attach to dirt and dissolve it without drying out your face. It’s fantastic.  Plus, it’s  also great for lazy people like me who hate to wash their faces in the morning.


My favorite is Oil of Olay Luminous Advanced Micellar Water



morning skincare buffet

Apply Serum–  I started using serums when I read somewhere that it was like a multi-vitamin for your face. For some reason that really struck a cord with me.  I am currently using and loving products from The Ordinary line by the Abnormal Beauty Company.  Their products are no nonsense, affordable and very effective.

My favorite serum is The Ordinary Buffet




morning skincare the ordinary

Apply Eye Treatment– Under eye puffiness can be an issue for me in the morning.  I found this great product that has green tea extract from The Ordinary Line and it works phenomenally. A couple of drops and you look wide awake in about 10 minutes, it’s like an espresso for your skin.

My favorite eye treatment is The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG




skincare routine cerav e

Apply Moisturizer and boost Sunscreen– Oh moisturizers, I have tried a few but never actually fell in love with any of them.  Right now I have settled on a collagen based product, but it only has SPF 20, so I mix it with a few drops of a drug store brand moisturizer and it seems to do the trick quite nicely.

My moisturizer cocktail consists of CeraVe AM Moisturizing Lotion and Mario Badescu Collagen Moisturizer




morning skincare rosewater

If I am feeling fancy I will top all that off with a spritz of Mario Badescu Rosewater and Aloe Facial Spray I don’t actually notice any difference, but it smells nice and makes me feel pretty and really isn’t that what all this is about.

Got any favorite products you love?  Let me know in the comments, knowing me I will probably run out and buy them.

Just so you know, this post contains affiliate links.  If you use one of the links to actually purchase a product, I may receive a small commission on the sale.  If that is an issue, you can simply search for the product by name and purchase it from any source you prefer, I am just happy to share my experiences with these products.

When Life Hands You Basil, Make Pesto

When Life Hands You Basil, Make Pesto

Because it has been ruthlessly hot and humid in Ohio this summer my basil plants are hulking out in the garden. With this abundance of basil, I have no other choice than to make pesto.

An Abundance of Basil

Pesto, that green, garlicky paste that makes pasta and bread sing with joy.  I love it, but not that store bought crap, I have no idea how they keep that stuff green because real pesto will turn on you faster than an avocado on a hot day. If your pesto doesn’t turn dark, almost black, green on the top once you open the lid, you need to question your sources.

As you might have guessed, my cooking style is a little more freestyle than some may like, but you can’t argue with my results.  Here is a short tutorial on how we make Pesto, Mayhem style.

First, you have to prep that basil.  Pick the leaves off, put them in a bowl and rinse them off.  Then, give them a ride in the salad spinner and lay them out on a towel.  If necessary, gently roll the towel to get any excess water off.

Basil pesto

Once that little task is complete, it is time to get out the ingredients and equipment.  I find it best to have it all ready up front because once you get started it goes pretty fast, unless of course you have skipped this step and find yourself rummaging around for garlic, or realizing you never toasted the nuts.

Basil Pesto ingredients equipment

For those of you who are not “visual learners” here is a list of the ingredients

Basil- lots of it- about 5-6 cups once the leaves are stripped

Nuts- about 1/4-1/3 cup I used pine nuts here, that’s pretty old school, but almonds and pistachios work too.  Toast them lightly in a pan and let them cool.

Garlic- as much as you can take, I use 5-6 cloves depending on the size of the clove which can range from tiny pebble-to “as big as a human nose”

Parmesan Cheese- grated works best, about a cup

Salt & Pepper- to taste, I use about a teaspoon of salt and a half teaspoon of pepper.

Lemon-  I use half a lemon, unless it’s little or dry, then use the whole thing, or get a better lemon.

Olive oil- quite a bit, have 2 cups ready, you probably won’t need it all, but better safe than sorry.

OK, ready people, let’s get our food processors or blenders out and let the mayhem commence.

basil pesto add lemon

Put your basil, garlic, nuts, lemon juice, salt and pepper in and pulse until the paste begins to form. Then scrape down the sides of the bowl.

basil pesto scrape bowl

After the initial pulse, you can start adding the olive oil, a little at a time until the paste starts to loosen up, then stop and add the cheese.


basil pesto add cheese

Lock it all down again and run the food processor again adding more oil until the consistency seems about right.  Then stop. Now this is a crucial, you must test it on a cracker, or at least that’s how it goes down in our kitchen. There are people who will have the audacity to suggest this step is not necessary, these particular people are not your friends, ignore them. Later, you will need to find better friends.

basil pesto cracker test

Once you have enjoyed yourself a cracker, or possibly a sleeve of crackers, adjust your seasonings.  Another squeeze of lemon or a pinch more salt may be in order, it’s totally up to you cause you are the boss here, take orders from no-one.  Once it meets with your approval, jar that green gold up and pop it in the fridge if you plan to use it in the next week or so.  Alternatively, you can freeze it and pull it out on a dreary cold day and remember all the fun we had today making pesto together.

basil pesto jar

Got any pesto tips or stories to share?  I would love to hear from you in the comments below.


Stitch Fix Review-July 2018

Stitch Fix Review-July 2018

It’s a great feeling to come home and see your new Stitch Fix box sitting on the porch.  Especially when you forgot it was coming.  Bonus!! This is my fourth installment of five wardrobe items, specifically  chosen just for me and delivered to my door.  Let’s see what I got.

stitch fix box front porch

If you are new to the Mayhem (first of all, welcome) here are some links to my earlier posts about Stitch Fix June Fix Review  and May Fix Review .  My daughter also loves this service, you can read about her experience here Stitch Fix Teen Edition

What’s the deal with this Stitch Fix thing you keep rambling on about?

If you have no idea what I am talking about,  Stitch Fix is a subscription styling service, that, for a reasonable fee, sends you items based on a profile you create.  Purchase an item and the styling fee ($20) is credited towards your balance. You can  get a $25 credit if you use a referral link when you set up your profile.  If you are interested, just follow the link below and fill out your profile.  When you are ready to order your first Fix, you will have a $25 credit waiting for you on your account.

Stitch Fix Referral Link for $25 credit

Since my Fixes have been so on point, I requested more of the same.  Unfortunately, I don’t think I was truly in the mood for “the same” when I opened this box.  On first glance, I saw a sweater, some tops and a dress.  My immediate impression was that I  loved the dress, disliked the sweater and was unmoved by the tops.

The first piece was this really comfy knit top. It fit really well, often these kinds of cross-front tops need to be pinned, but this was perfect.  The fabric was light and stretchy, and it was super comfortable.  The price was a little high for what it was, but it’s a great piece.

Stitch Fix Review knit top

Stitch Fix Review aussiedoodle

Not a great photo of the top, but isn’t Odin the cutest?

Next was this striped skirt. Even though I have fairly narrow hips, the white vertical stripe managed to find it’s way to the widest part of my body.  It’s a nice skirt, light weight, fully lined; but, it is the rare body type that can pull off bold horizontal stripes. I know that vertical side stripe is designed to minimize the width, but it is not fooling anyone.

Stitch Fix blue white stripe skirt

Stitch Fix navy blue white skirt

I love sweaters, even in the summer.  The day I opened this box it was 95 degrees out with 10,000% humidity, probably not the best day to judge a sweater.  So this sweater started out in a hole, the color did not help it at all, and it totally gave off a dowdy vibe. Strike Three.

Stitch Fix gray cardigan

Stitch Fix Cardigan and Corgi

The cardigan is not awesome, but Winston the Corgi has awesome on lock down!

The one piece in the box I was sure I would not like turned out to be the one piece I actually loved.  This top looked gigantic when I held it up, but when I put it on I was pleasantly surprised.  The only issue I had with it was the length in the back, it gave it an art smock feel that I did not think would work well in the office.

Stitch Fix white blouse

Stitch Fix white blouse

I saved the dress for last because just coming out of the box this thing made my heart sing.  It’s a gorgeous navy blue, stretchy fabric, v-neckline (my personal fave) and be still my heart, POCKETS!  I was smitten.

Stitch Fix Navy Dress

Stitch Fix Review Navy Blue Dress

Unfortunately that style came at the cost of breathing.  You see this dress hit me in the widest part of my rib cage, and even though it was stretchy, there was not enough give to make comfortable breathing possible.  Also, because it has a full skirt and is high-waisted, if you could see me from the side it has a tenting effect that makes me look like I am trying to hide a pregnancy.  Heartbreaking.

So the big question, how much, right? It’s actually the lowest price Fix yet.  With the buy it all discount, and my Style Pass (more about that in a future post, it is tres exciting) my total would be $122.00

Stitch Fix Review invoice

The Final Verdict….

But alas, I just really wasn’t into any of these items.  I went back and forth trying to convince myself to keep the white blouse and the navy top, but in the end I realized I have a lot of white tops, and this one was not really office appropriate.  The blue top was lovely, but it would have had to get in line because I have several navy blue tops as well.

This is my first time striking out completely, but I’m pretty sure it happens to everyone.  I am actually proud of myself that I resisted the urge to hang on to items I probably wouldn’t have worn much.  Can’t wait to get my Fix on next month.