Charlotte Tilbury Cosmetics

Lately I’ve just felt like I want to throw out all of my cosmetics and start fresh.

Here’s why:


This jumble represents most of what I currently own, but there’s another drawer full of random freebies, missteps and cast-offs that I can’t bear to show.

I grabbed an old lipstick last week and had it on before I realized it smelled bad. Further inspection determined that it was probably waaaay past its expiration date. Ick.

BTW, here’s how you know how long something is good after it’s opened. The first one is 12 months and the second is 24.


I think the lipstick I was referring to above was from approximately 1998. Double eww.

Right now I have my eye on the new cosmetics line from British make-up artist Charlotte Tilbury. 

While I love the idea of having just a few, perfect items, I am perpetually attracted to the next new thing, particularly when there is some faint promise (wishful thinking?) of gorgeousness in the deal.

Here’s what captured my attention.


This pretty lipstick is called “Bitch Perfect.” “Coachella Coral” also received high praise for flattering many different complexions.


Lipgloss! I can’t get enough, which is one of my many problems. This is “Portobello Girl.”


The blush has two colors, the outer for the cheekbones and the center for a pop of color. It’s appropriately titled Cheek to Chic Swish and Pop blush. This color is “Love is the Drug.”


Emerald eyeshadow pencil.


Skin perfecting powder, which I find myself increasingly attracted to given my advancing age. Sigh.


And if you really want to start from scratch, you can get a curated look all at once. 

Fall Weekend


Yesterday was my last long-ish run before the marathon next weekend. 

And oh, man, am I nervous for next weekend.

The run wasn’t exactly bad, it just wasn’t good.

Four miles in, I asked myself why I was so ready to throw in the towel.

Was I physically unwell? No.

Thirsty? No.

In pain? No.

The answer came back that I just felt kind of bored. 

So I definitely need to spend this week getting into “Eye of the Tiger” mentality and get my game face on.

While I was off running, Spouse took the kids to a parade yesterday in our hometown, celebrating the week-long binge drinking event known as Oktoberfest. 

The kids came home with mountains of candy and other assorted ephemera like stickers and Mardi Gras beads.

And cheese.

You read that right: cheese.

Some group was giving away cheese slices along the parade route, and after more than a day of no refrigeration at the bottom of a bag of candy, I made the executive decision that the slices would be 86’d to the trash.

Hopefully no one will freak out too much.





Get Me Murray!

I was dead serious when I posted last week that getting the children up-and-at-’em is akin to poking two bears.


Trixie (5) has taken to wearing sunglasses in the A.M, which overall channels a strong 1990s Courtney Love vibe.

Here she is enjoying a nutritious breakfast of Fruity Pebbles, which was immediately preceded by her barking, “Where are my Fruity Pebbles? I ordered Fruity Pebbles! And why isn’t anyone pouring the milk?”

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Note that the picture quality is poor since I had to surreptitiously take them to avoid her wrath. Frankly, I’m scared of her.

Spouse has also worked out a whole backstory to her behavior that I find hilarious (and a helpful coping mechanism), namely that she’s an indulged, out-of-control socialite/actress/musician.

He’ll pretend to be Trixie (out of earshot, of course), and routinely provides bon mots like:

  • The sun! It burns!
  • I don’t get out of bed for less than $10,000 a day. And I don’t see any bags of cash in your hands.
  • Get the G6 gassed up and ready to go! I’ll be at Teterboro in 20.
  • See you in Ibiza.
  • Where the hell is my agent Murray? He was supposed to be here 10 minutes ago! Murray! Get me Murray!




Desk Emergency Kit

Once upon a time, I used to joke that I wouldn’t buy anything that required dry cleaning or ironing.

While the ironing rule still stands (my iron was a $15 cheapie 20 years ago and still has burned carpet bits on it from a floor ironing mishap in my college dorm room), I had to get over the dry cleaning thing when I started working a place that required me to wear suits every day. 

My dress code at work is Business.

Not Business Casual.

Never Casual.

And never, ever is it Dress Down Friday.

But you know what? I like to wear suits. It makes you feel formal and grown up.

And since I talk a lot about Grown Up Things and do Grown Up Things at work, it’s fitting to wear a suit.

But when wardrobe malfunctions occur, it’s best to be prepared.

Here’s what to do:

  • Scuffed shoes: Stash a pre-soaked shoe buffing sponge in your desk. Once in a while these come as an amenity at a nice hotel, and I shamelessly hoard them when they do. You can also give shoes a quick once over with a microfiber dusting cloth. (Also: don’t wear beat up shoes in the first place! This is one major thing that separates fashion pros from rookies. Get them polished at the airport if you’re early for a flight).
  • Nicked heels: Disguise the bruised area with a Sharpie of the same color until you can get them repaired. Get them repaired!
  • Loose hem: Ok, here I will confess that I have temporarily used a stapler to keep the hem from dragging. 
  • Freezing temps: Keep a gray, black or navy cardigan in your desk as an emergency layering piece.
  • Pinchy shoes: This is a major one for me. I have at least three back up pairs of black shoes piled under my desk for those times that 4″ heels can’t last for a 12 hour day.
  • Emergency kit: I’d recommend Band Aids for shoe blisters, extra nylons for inevitable runs, fresh socks (so important for me when things in the OR get messy), stain remover (Tide To Go) and a lint roller.

I speak from experience.



Ash Sneakers

Last spring I fell hard for these Ash “Jungle” slip on sneakers:



Why they are awesome:

  • They are comfortable
  • Really comfortable
  • They have a cool platform that adds at least an inch of height, which I don’t need but love

I liked them so much that I had to get a second pair, this time in a cool metallic leather:

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These will be perfect for fall city adventures.

Thank You Upgrade


I’ve previously posted about writing thank you notes, as well as instilling the habit into my children (mixed results there, people).

But I saw a tip recently that I love, and it makes thank you notes even better.

Here it is: Lead with “you” and save the thanks until the end.


Dear Friend:

You are truly the hostess with the mostest. No one can throw a party like you do, and your mimosas and pancakes are out of this world. I am so lucky to have a friend like you! Thank you for inviting me to brunch.

Love, Fancy

Why it works: everyone loves to hear about themselves. 

Try it!

Fun D-I-Y Gifts

Anthropologie has so many cool gifts that could also easily be D-I-Y, if you are so inclined (which generally I am NOT).

First, these Celebration Jars could be tailored to almost any recipient or occasion and are cutely packaged in a mason jar. Love those felt crowns! Kids could also even make these as a D-I-Y favor at a birthday party.

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This would take a bit more work (instructions here), but Surprise Balls are also a lot of fun, especially if the trinkets inside were extra sparkly. Before and after shots shown below.



This is a set of small gifts, one for each day of the recipient’s birthday week. Fun!

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How about this sweet little mouse? She could be made in a re-purposed Altoids tin.

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More ideas for a re-purposed tin are here.

Happy crafting! Send me some completed projects, please. 😉 


Long Cardigans

Long cardigans are really having a moment this fall.

Yesterday I was browsing Nordstrom’s new arrivals since I needed (!) a few things for two upcoming work trips, one to Hawaii next month (Aaaaaloha!) and the other to Canada. In November.

Given the dichotomous weather of the two destinations, I wanted some layering pieces that would be useful for wearing on the plane as well as while I’m there.

That’s when I saw the ubiquity of the long cardigans.

The newest version seems to be more straight up and down and less flowy than other iterations.

Here are some examples:

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  1. Splendid
  2. Top Shop
  3. Theory (so pretty!)
  4. Halogen

Not a cardigan, but I also really dig this Splendid poncho:


(All of these images are from the Nordstrom site).





Happy Friday!

Happy Friday!


I can say this right now since the rest of my family is still asleep.

I’m ready for the weekend since this week as been so, so sub-par.

From MGM’s (7) newfound interest in smoking (Sample conversation: “Mom, how old do you have to be to do cigaretting?” Me: “Never.” For crying out loud! Cigaretting?) to kerfuffles everywhere I turn, I’m looking forward to a break in the action.

Except that I am on call. D’Oh!

Doctors tend to be superstitious about call shifts the way actors are about performances; i.e. the old “break a leg” comment.

The best you can say is something like, “I hope things are quiet” even though what you really mean is “I hope no one dies on your watch.”

Fingers crossed.

P.S. One last thought for today, and this is something I can’t get out of my head. From Professor Wendy Wood, who is at USC and studies habits:

Habits are a simple, basic form of learning. Even rats form habits.  It’s amazing that this simple form of learning underlies so many of our daily activities.

People repeat about 40% of their activities almost daily and usually in the same location

Note that I type this as I start my morning coffee brewing, same as always. Read the full interview here.