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Friday Favorites and Happenings


Friday, January 19, 2018

*This post contains affiliate links.

Wow, what a week this has been. I don't even know how to sort through my emotions. There has been some good and some bad, but just wow. This week, I am going to change it up a bit and tell you about my week, my favorites and just plain randomness. I didn't write a weekend update and I feel like we did some awesome stuff this weekend, so that will be highlighted below. Enjoy. And Happy Friday!

ONE. Sunday we went to a local trampoline park called EZ Air. One of my life long friends couldn't make it to the girls birthday party because her ear drum ruptured, so we set up a play date with her and her boys for Sunday at EZ Air. We had never been, but heard good things about it.

When we got there, we found out that parents jump free on Sundays. Score. I know my girls wouldn't go alone or let us watch from the side lines, so this was awesome because it isn't cheap. Though I do hear you can get groupons for it. Anyways, we got there early and had a start time of 11 am.

The girls were a bit timid at first, but once Rory and I got out there, they couldn't stop jumping. We did their main jump area, the dodge ball jumping area (where Rory through a ball at my face, ha) and the jousting foam pit. We didn't stop for the entire hour. When it was time to go, the girls were so sad. They didn't want to leave. I see us going back many times.
EZ Air Trampoline Park

EZ Air Trampoline Park

EZ Air Trampoline Park

Side note: The next day I was pretty sore. I didn't realize how many muscles you use when you jump and do "tricks" on the trampoline.

TWO. If you follow me on Instagram, you already saw this, but on Tuesday morning, Sutton had an accident. About 30 minutes after I arrived at work, I got a phone call from the daycare. It started off as usual saying that Sutton had been running, she fell and hit her mouth. I have had these calls before and they are usually as a precaution to tell the parents that their child hit their head. It is protocol to do this.

What was different was: it was the director calling, not her teacher. And then she told me the more in depth story. She said Sutton was running, she tripped and fell into a bookcase. They said she hit her mouth and was bleeding and they think she needed stitches. I told her we would be right there.

I told my boss what happened and said I didn't know if I would be back in that day. The drive is awful because I work 40 minutes away from the girls daycare. The entire time I kept thinking it can't be that bad. But I split my lip when I was around 8 and I had to have stitches. We called her pediatrician to find out what to do and then our parents to let them know.

When we walked into the daycare, she was sitting with a teacher with an ice pack on her lip. As soon as she saw us, she started crying and removed the ice pack and then I saw how bad it was. It was bad. The director took me to her office to watch the video (there are cameras everywhere in the daycare), twice. Everything checked out with what they told me, so then I went back out to Sutton (Rory was holding her at this point). She wanted me, so I took her and Rory took photos of her to send to her pediatrician. They told us that she needed to go to the ER. Luckily, we have a really great children's ER.
children's fall and facial wound

We took her there and after she was checked out, they said she needed stitches. They gave us the options of general anesthesia or numbing cream. They recommended numbing cream because she didn't need many stitches. They also recommended us holding her down instead of nurses so she wouldn't freak out as much.

We waited for the numbing cream to take effect and watched Mickey Mouse Clubhouse on my phone. Then it was go time. Rory held her head and I held her arms and body. She screamed the entire time. It was heartwrenching. She only needed two stitches, but it felt like it took forever. He wanted to make sure they were perfect to minimize the scarring. She kept telling me I was hurting her and to let go of her arms. I cried the entire time. Seriously so hard watching your child go through that.
children's fall and facial wound

But the good news is, when we were done and got home, she got ice cream (per the doctor's orders), lots of snuggles and is doing amazing. She knows she has an owie on her face and she has to be careful, but she is back to her usual spunky self. Children are so strong!
children's fall and facial wound

THREE. The time is finally here...I leave to Ireland and England on Tuesday. I am pretty excited, but so nervous. I hate the idea of leaving my family, especially after what happened to Sutton this week. But my husband assures me, he has got this and Sutton's stitches come out on Sunday.

I can't wait to explore Ireland. I have never been and it has been on my travel bucket list for a long time. Get ready for a recap when I get back.

I should be writing posts for the next two weeks, but I am pretty far behind. Ugh. But if you have ever wanted to guest post on my blog, now is your chance. Let me know if you are interested.

FOUR. Loft had another sale and it got me. Everything was 50% to 60% off and free shipping, so I bought more things. You should see the look on my husbands face when I got three different Loft packages this week. Yikes.

But I bought these awesome items.
Loft Striped Boatneck Sweater
Loft Poppy Bloom Smocked Shirt
Loft Socks

And a cold shoulder top in Navy that is no longer available.

FIVE. Did you read my post on Re-introductions yesterday? If you didn't, please go check it out and check out all the bloggers that linked up with us. I met so many new-to-me bloggers yesterday and I can't wait to follow along with them. I love the Girl Chat link up. Next month's link is on Thursday February 15th and the topic is How You Stay Organized.
Girl Chat link up

Have a good weekend!

I am linking up with April, A Little Bit of Everything, Meet @ the Barre and Cup of Tea.
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Girl Chat - Reintroductions


Thursday, January 18, 2018

It is time for our first Girl Chat of 2018. This month's topic is Reintroductions. I love this because I feel like we really only introduce ourselves when we first start our blogs and we forget to keep doing it every so often. Especially since you get new followers all the time. Ok, enough rambling.
Girl chat 2018

My name is Danielle and I blog in this little space called, Sparkles and Lattes. I started this blog in 2013 to document my wedding planning. At that time, I read a ton of wedding blogs and I wanted to share my own experience in hopes of helping others. My blog changed over time as we got married, went on a honeymoon, started trying for a baby, fertility struggles, announcing that were pregnant with twins, having the twins, my crazy delivery, and everything in between then and now.

But let me back up a bit. I have lived in the same area my entire life. I have traveled the world, but kept my feet in one place when it comes to a place called my home. I have only lived in two different cities and they are 30 minutes apart from each other. I went to the University of Nevada where I obtained a degree in Information Systems and then started working for a web design/multimedia company. I loved it there. I only worked there for about a year, but I loved it.

During the week, I would work my butt of coding websites and then Friday came and it was like Christmas every week. As long as you had everything done, we got to play video games against each other and have beer. So much fun. We would shoot nerf guns at each other and just have a great time. Don't worry, we would sometimes work during Fridays too.

Then I was offered a job at my current place of employment with the Nevada Gaming Control Board. What intrigued me the most was world travel. Being a 23 year old and single, the thought of traveling the world on someone else's dime was amazing.

I have been at my current place of employment for almost 11 1/2 years. Crazy how times flies. I have made some amazing friends, gotten promotions, learned a bunch of things and traveled the world. I have been all over the U.S. and went to Australia (amazing), Canada, England, Scotland, Gibraltar and Israel. And next week I am adding Ireland to that list.

But I think the most amazing part of my job was meeting my husband. Yep, we met at work and you can read all about it here.

The focus on this blog has definitely shifted since I started blogging. I feel like I now talk about my girls, weekly weekend updates, Friday favorites (my shopping problem), a recipe or two here and there, monthly Girl Chat (first one this year), some confessions and a little bit of other things.

I love sports, mostly football. I seriously can't get enough of it.
I love wine and scotch.
I love traveling, but hate being away from my girls. I really want to go to Italy, Iceland and somewhere in Asia.
I snowboard and have had a season pass since I was 16 years old.
I have two tattoos, a lily on my ankle that I got with my sister 10 years ago and my girls names on my rib cage that I got a couple months ago.
I drink coffee every single day.
I have a dog and his name is Walter. He is a chiweenie and is seriously the best dog!
I prefer sweet/fruity candy over chocolate.
I love Italian food.
I love every kind of music from oldies to rock to punk, but I don't care for country music. Sure there are a few songs that I like, but I can probably county how many I like on one hand.

And that is just a few things about me. I can't wait to re "meet" all of you.

To link up - just grab our graphic, link up, and let's getting to chatting!  Make sure to stop by a few others linked up for an extra bit of girl chat! 
Girl chat monthly link up

Danielle / Sparkles and Lattes - Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Instagram
Emily / A Little Bit of Emily - Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Instagram
Lindsay / Lindsay's Sweet World - Pinterest - Facebook - Instagram - Twitter
Lizzie / This Happy Life Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Facebook - Instagram
Sierra / Beautifully Candid - Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Instagram - Twitter




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My Favorite Hair Products


Wednesday, January 17, 2018

*This post contains affiliate links.

I have fine and straight hair and it seems like it is tough maintaining it. Between the constant breakage and the limpness of it, I have picked my hairdressers brain on how to liven it up. Does anyone else fail miserably at recreating your hair look and style that your hairdresser does during your hair appt? I do.

But I am going to share my current hair routine. I do change it up every so often, but this is the one I have been using for awhile.

Shampoo and Conditioner

I alternate my shampoo and conditioner throughout the week. I use Bumble and Bumble Full Potential Shampoo and Conditioner one day and Oribe Bright Blonde Shampoo and Conditioner the next time.

Why do I use two different lines? Well I color my hair a bright blonde and I want to keep that brightness going between appointments.

Bumble and Bumble's Full Potential is amazing. It reduces hair loss, prevents breakage, strengthens your hair and makes it look fuller. The key to fine hair.
Bumble and Bumble Full Potential Shampoo
Bumble and Bumble Full Potential Conditioner

My other favorite shampoo is the Oribe collection. I get the bright blonde (in the pink bottle), but they have so many lines for different types of hair. This is my favorite one. It smells so good and leave my hair feeling silky.
Oribe Bright Blonde Shampoo
Oribe Bright Blonde Conditioner

Dry Shampoo

I have tried a bunch of dry shampoo lines. I used to use Not Your Mother's Clean Freak (I still do after the gym), but then I went to the grand opening of my hair salon and they used the new Bumble and Bumble Pret-a-powder and I fell in love. Not only does it smell good, but I can use it for several days and not shampoo my hair. I have never found a dry shampoo that does that. I usually can only go a day in between, but not with Bumble's. This stuff works soooooo good. It isn't exactly cheap, but so worth it. Plus it smells like heaven.
Bumble and Bumble Pret-a-powder Dry Shampoo

Hair Repair

If you are like me and blow dry, straighten and/or curl your hair all the time, I am sure it is a bit damaged. With fine hair, it gets damaged easily. A new product came out and my hairstylist put some in my hair last time (before blow drying it) and then gave me some samples to take home since they were not selling it in the store yet. She said her husband complimented her on her hair and he never does anymore (since it is on point all the time).

I used it daily and my hair never felt better. The ends felt soft and my hair was shiny without being greasy. I got a ton of compliments on it and I hadn't changed anything really. I did the same color and a micro trim.
Bumble and Bumble Saves the Day

Hair Spray

I have used so many different hair sprays. I have used expensive ones like Bumble and Bumble Does It All, Pureology Hair Spray, Kerastase Hair Spray and then cheaper ones like Tresemme, but the one that seems to do the job and is only $3 to $5, Dove Flexible Hair Spray.
Dove Flexible Hair Spray

What are your favorite hair products?
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Friday Favorites


Friday, January 12, 2018

*This post contains affiliate links.

I am so glad the week is almost over. It hasn't been a bad week, but it was my first full week at work in what seems like forever. Thankfully, we have another three day weekend ahead of us. I plan to spend a lot of time with my family and hopefully squeeze in a snowboarding day if it would actually snow here. Here me snow gods, please snow!

The girls school is open on Monday, so we are taking them in and either snowboarding, taking a hike or having a day with just Rory and I. I can't wait!

Onto Friday Favorites and Happenings.

ONE. I posted a picture the other night (on IG) when I made chicken tikki masala in my Instant Pot. I was a little worried I wouldn't love it because every time I make it from a jar that everyone swears by, I am not a big fan of it. But Jenn from Going the Distance posted this on her IG and I knew I had to try it. And let me tell you, it is good. Like really good. It won't replace my favorite local Indian spot, but we will be adding this to our rotation.

The recipe comes from Savory Tooth. I made it exactly like the directions said to except I used a bit more greek yogurt because I was too lazy to measure it out and take a bit of the yogurt out. I read some of the reviews and some people thought it was either too much garam masala or that the garam masala was gritty. I didn't have this problem. I bought my garam masala at Whole Foods. I like the flavor of garam masala as I use it in another favorite dish (roasted cauliflower and chickpeas on pita bread with an avocado creama), but if you aren't sure, maybe cut down to 3 tsp in the SAUCE. I paired mine with basamati rice and garlic naan from Trader Joes (the frozen ones). So good.
Chicken Tikki Masala in the Instant Pot

TWO. I may have mentioned this here before or maybe not, but I loved unicorns growing up. I think it stemmed from my love of Rainbow Bright growing up. I still have a VHS of Rainbow Bright. Now to find a way to share it with the girls. Anyways, one of my friends showed me some unicorn leggings for the girls and I am in LOVE to say the least. I sooo want to buy these for the girls, but I don't think I can get away with it right now since we just had Christmas AND the girls birthday. So these will stay on my wish list for a bit longer. Maybe for Valentine's Day? Can I justify it to my husband then? But seriously, how cute are these? And they come in long which is perfect for my girls.
Unicorn Leggings

THREE. Speaking of other things that I want to buy, these Toms are at the top of my list. They look so cute and I feel like I would get a lot of wear out of them. I want them in brown as well.
Toms booties

FOUR. Have any of you tried Third Love bras? I have seen ads for them everywhere and I love the idea of them, but just not sure I want to pull the trigger on a $68 bra. Yes I know you can try it for 30 days and if you don't love it, you can return it, but I also fear that I will love it and then have to replace all my current bras which is two (one black and one nude), but that is still an investment. 

I took their sizing and fit quiz to see which was best for me and I got the classic t-shirt bra. So please if you have used them, please message or email me so I can hear your thoughts before buying or not buying.

FIVE. If you haven't entered the $500 Amazon gift card giveaway, go here to do so. I know I would love $500 to Amazon. Then I can buy the booties above plus everything else on my wish list. And maybe share some.
Amazon Gift Card Giveaway

SIX. I have good news....my favorite bloggers and I are continuing our monthly Girl Chat link up. We came up with some new topics and a new graphic. Our first Girl Chat of January is Thursday January 18th and the topic is Reintroductions. This gives us all to the chance to reintroduce ourselves, get to know our fellow bloggers even more and get to know new bloggers. I hope you will join us next Thursday. And don't worry, I will send out a reminder next week. Also note: we changed our link up date to the third Thursday of the month!
Girl Chat link up

Girl Chat link up topics

I am linking up with April, A Little Bit of Everything, Meet @ the Barre and Cup of Tea.
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Twins Birthday Party


Tuesday, January 9, 2018

*This post contains affiliate links.

What a weekend. I am still soaking it all in. In case you didn't read on Friday, but we celebrated the girls third birthday this weekend. They turned 3 on December 29th, but we had their party on January 6th.

Friday after work, we had to run errands for the girls party. We stopped at a party store and it was disappointing. I had hopes of getting Minnie cupcake decorations, but they had zero. I did pick up two balloons for the party...a Minnie Mouse and the number 3 in pink. Then we went to the grocery store to buy some drinks, a veggie tray and things to make cupcakes. My co-worker told me if I couldn't find any Minnie decorations, then take Oreos and make a Minnie, so that is what I did.

Once we got home, the girls were already at our house courtesy of my in-laws and my SIL and sweet nephew were there as well. We had some take-out Mexican food and watched my nephew open his presents from us with the help of his cousins (the girls love opening presents). After some hang out time, everyone went home and we got the girls ready for bed.

Then I got to some cleaning and decorating for the party. I wanted to have enough time to bake and clean a bit in the morning, so I decorated early. Best idea ever. Then I had a glass of scotch and watched some tv before calling it a night.

Saturday morning we got up and got the girls some cereal. Rory went out to get some coffee and pastries and I got to baking the cupcakes. In between baking, I did some cleaning and showering. It felt like it was 10:30 in an instant and people were to start arriving soon, so I snapped a few photos of the girls in their new party dresses.
three year old birthday dresses

Then I let the girls run around so I could take some pictures of the decor. I didn't get that many photos of their party as I was hosting, running around, and enjoying every moment.
Minnie Mouse themed birthday party
Minnie Mouse themed birthday party
Minnie Mouse party decorations
Minnie Mouse party decorations
Minnie and Mickey Mouse cupcakes
 Funfetti cupcakes with pink frosting and Oreo Minnie's
Minnie Mouse themed birthday
There was more drinks outside in a bucket, juices in the fridge for the kids and bottled water everywhere

We bought pizza from our favorite place and Rory brought it back about a half hour after the party started. We had four sets of twins at the party and it was so much fun to see all the twins. Two other sets were invited, but couldn't make it. Plus there was a ton of other kids. We set out a ton of toys, the girls teepee, tunnel, art easel, basketball hoop, doll house and then we opened up their room to all the kids. 

Sutton wanted her cupcake that she had waited all morning for, so after Avery finished her pizza, we sang Happy Birthday to the girls.
birthday
 Not the best picture of me, but one of the only captured of me going to the twins with their cupcakes.
birthday

Then the girls opened up all their presents.....so many gifts.
They couldn't tear through them fast enough
 My future BIL in the thick of it all

After gifts, people started leaving and the girls wanted to open all of the toys.
Happy Helpers bag set cell phone
This cell phone came in the Happy Helpers Bag Set and the girls have been fighting over it ever since.

After everyone left, we cleaned up a bit and then put the girls down for a late nap (at 3 pm vs their normal 1 pm naptime). I spent the entire nap cleaning the house (other than vacuum) since our dog would be coming back home. Once the girls were up, I finished cleaning and went out to grab us salads for dinner. The girls spent the rest of the evening playing with all their new toys and cuddling while watching football.

Sunday morning we got up, gave the girls a bath and then went to my in-laws house for a brunch to see my SIL, BIL and nephew before they went back to California. We ate sausage, bacon, quiche, fruit, jalapeno poppers and bagels with coffee. 

Then we took the girls home for their naps. While they napped, I went grocery shopping for the week. I love meal planning...especially when I get 5 days of food for only $120. After the girls naps, we did some laundry, playtime, took down the Christmas lights outside and watched football. I left the house just after 5 pm because I went to dinner with my sister and our friend who was in town from Colorado. I haven't seen Holly in about 4 years, so it was long overdue. I have known Holly and her family all of my life as her older sister was my best friend growing up. It was so nice to catch up.

I spent almost four hours at dinner, so I got home, changed, watched some tv and went to bed early. 

How was your weekend?

Don't forget to enter the giveaway I am co-hosting for $500. You can enter here.

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TBB Asks - New Year, New You


Monday, January 8, 2018

It's time for another round of TBB Asks. This time the focus is New Year, New You. Enjoy.
TBB Asks New Year New You

1. Resolutions or no resolutions? Growing up, I used to make resolutions, but now I do not. I feel like I never stick to them, so I just focus on being a better me each year.

2. Love snow or no snow? I love the snow. I hate driving in the snow, but I love the snow. I love sledding, snowboarding and the beauty of the snow.

3. Name a new place you want to go this year. Well I have always wanted to go to Ireland and I am getting to do that for work, so that is one. But somewhere that isn't planned that I want to go to....Italy. I am dying to go there for the culture, food and the shopping.

4. Would you rather have a new hair cut or hair color? Hair color because I can always change it back if I don't like the new color. Yes, hair grows, but it feels like it takes forever if you cut a bunch off. Plus with my sisters wedding in June, I am trying to grow my hair out.

5. Name one special thing you want to do for yourself this year. Give myself more grace. Other than that, I want to try to have a few hours a month just to myself, to focus on just me and being me instead of mommy, wife, etc.

6. Least favorite thing about January. It is just soooo cold.

7. Most favorite thing about January. A new year means a fresh start and who doesn't love a fresh start?

8. When do you take down your holiday decorations? I usually wait until the first weekend in January (or the day after New Years), but this year I took them down two days after Christmas. Since I was home and still sick, I decided to do a bunch of organizing and cleaning. But to be fair, I did leave the tree up with lights on it. Everything else came down.

9. Do you diet in January? Haha, nope.

10. What area of your home do you want to organize the most? Well I was going to say the girls room, but I just did that two days after Christmas. So the next place I want to tackle would be our office. It has a bunch of things that need to be donated, purged and just cleaned.

11. Favorite winter comfort food. It is a tie between meatloaf and lasagna. I love them both so much.

12. Favorite guilty pleasure. Watching my girly shows.

I can't wait to hear your answers. Please drop a link when you respond to the questions.
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Friday Favorites - First of 2018


Friday, January 5, 2018

*This post contains affiliate links.

I managed to blog 3 times this week. #goals Does anyone else feel like it is so hard to get back into the swing of things after the holidays? I really do.

But we made it through the week...even though it was only a 4 day work week. We have another jam packed weekend ahead of us. Tomorrow is the girls 3rd birthday party. We have a bunch of twins coming to their party and so many family and friends. We can't wait. Then Sunday morning we have brunch with family and then that evening I have dinner with my sister and a friend who is in town. Maybe next weekend I can relax. Maybe.

Onto Friday Favorites.

ONE. I bought a pair of Allbird shoes a few months back, but had to send them back because they were too small. I had every intention on buying a new pair in a bigger size and then I didn't. But now they have a no lace, slip on version that I really want. I can't decide between pink and black. I am sure black will get more wear because it is universal, but the pink is just as cute.
Allbirds shoes
Allbirds shoes

TWO. I saw that Nordstrom was having a sale along with every other shop and I decided to take a look. Big mistake. I wanted so much. But I only bought three pieces and I hope they will be perfect for my England trip.

I have been wanting a cozy cardigan and this one fits the bill. Plus it is in a dusty pink which is a favorite of mine. I paired it with the white tee below. It is still on sale for $37 (40% off).
bp ombre cardigan
lush raw edge slit tee

I also wanted a couple sweaters that were sold out in my size, but I did manage to snag this gray sweater.
bp v neck sweater
Currently Sold Out

THREE. I didn't really recap our NYE, so I thought I would share a little bit about it here. We actually went out, but we didn't go downtown or to the bars because it is crazy around here. We actually went to an early dinner at one of our favorite places and had the best pork chop. I don't know how they cook that thick of a pork chop this well, but it comes out perfectly every time. Plus they pair it with a root vegetable and a chutney based on what is in season. Seriously so good.
The Gas Lamp in Reno NV

After dinner, we drove home and too a Lyft just over a mile away from our house to a friends party. They used to be our neighbors, but moved about a year ago after a long renovation to their new house. Let me just say, it looked phenomenal. I LOVED their kitchen and the views were soooo beautiful. It looked over downtown and we could see the fireworks perfectly.
NYE

Just after midnight we walked home. Yep. We couldn't find a Lyft or Uber that wasn't over an hour away (super busy) and wasn't insanely priced. We paid $3.60 for our ride to the party and it would have been soooo much more with a super long wait. So we walked. Probably not the best idea in those heels I was wearing after drinking a lot of champagne.

FOUR. I never shared more photos from our Fall/Christmas photos, so I thought I would share my favorites other than our Christmas card photo. Our photographer did an amazing job and I can't wait to frame these. I seriously need to get my butt in gear and get these framed and/or on canvas. If you know of places (online) that have great deal, please send them my way.
Family photos

Family photos

Family photos

Family photos

FIVE. One of my Christmas gifts from Rory was a wireless charger for my iPhone8. I use my phone a lot at the gym when I work out (hello Netflix) and always burn through the battery. Now the iPhone8 is better with the battery life, but sometimes I also listen to Pandora and other battery draining apps. I told him I wanted a wireless charger after seeing my co-workers and he got me one. This one has amazing reviews, isn't expensive and it works really well. I have a case and a Popsocket on my phone and it still charges through all of that. If you have an iPhone 8 or X, I would definitely recommend this. This isn't a sponsored post. I just want to share this with you all.
Wireless charger for iphone 8
Wireless Charger for iPhone 8 or X

SIX. I am participating in a huge giveaway for a $500 Amazon gift card. Who doesn't want to spoil themselves after spoiling our loved ones? I know I would buy a bunch of things on my wishlist. Giveaway winner will be selected at random using Rafflecopter. Winner will be contacted by email and will have 48 hours to reply to claim the prize. If the prize is not claimed within 48 hours then an alternate winner will be selected. Open to International and 18+ years of age. Amazon giftcard will be emailed.

Use the form to enter below and good luck!!

$500 AMAZON GIFTCARD GIVEAWAY

Amazon gift card giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway


I am linking up with April, A Little Bit of Everything, Meet @ the Barre and Cup of Tea.
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