Fatshionista Cooks: Hatchery Tasting Box Review

Hello my lovelies!

I am back with a review of deliciousness.

It’s Thanksgiving week here in the States, otherwise known as “Eat all of the things and Buy all of the things week.”

We’ll discuss the buy all of the things aspect later on this week, but for today? Today is about eating all of the things.

So, I love to cook. I really love to cook. Part of the reason I even have cable is for Food Network and the Cooking Channel. I have a list of food bloggers that I love to visit regularly to get new ideas on what to try next.

And it was from The Kitchenista (the AMAZING chef that runs The Kitchenista Diaries) that I saw that there was a subscription box for cooks called Hatchery. Needless to say, I was quite intrigued.

I finally took the time to order one, and it came today. The best part about foodie subscription boxes is that you don’t have to wait to see if it works, like with beauty things. You can just eat it and know immediately if it’s the best! Here’s what I got:

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All wrapped up in brown paper…

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And all of the goodies!

Each box comes with a tasting guide that gives information about the folks who make the edibles, and even give recipes that showcase each sample sized ingredient. I received Whole Spice Paella Spice Mix (I can smell it through the baggie and OMG, y’all), Bill’s Best BBQ Sauce, Glico’s Pasta Gravy (gravy=sauce), Mustard and Co.Mustard sauce, Other Brother Olive Oil, and Potlicker Kitchen Spiced Wine Jelly. The Paella Spice Mix is going in my black beans. It has a smoky smell (smoked paprika, mmm) that I know will work well with them. Can’t wait to hook it up and report back!

I’ll totally give you the recipe for the black beans if y’all want it, by the way. It involves a slow cooker and not standing over a stove. Always the best recipe, in my book.

Now, I’m off to finish my sweet potato pies. My coworkers heard I bake an amazing one…and so now I’m baking four. :D

Fatshionista Cooks Retail Therapy Reviews Shopping

Baby, It’s Cold Outside: 5 Coats I’m Loving This Season

Naturally, I’m writing this when it’s a balmy 60 degrees outside.

NYC, please pick a season. *side eye*

Anyhow! I love coats, and even coat weather. I use them like accessories, mixing and matching them with my outfits like I do my shoes and bag. This year, there are so many different coats to love and play around with. Here’s a look at what I’m loving so much this year.

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From Lane Bryant.

Peacoats make me happy. Wool peacoats make my body happy (and warm), and a wool ombre peacoat? Clothing nirvana! I have to wear black to work every day, so I try to make my outerwear as not-black as I can. This fits the bill. Also, I’d want to do my nails to match.

Don’t judge me! :D

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From Eloquii.

Char, didn’t you JUST say that–

Yes. I did say I like my outerwear to be as not-black as possible. But do you see how cute this is?! This would be more of a special occasion/going out somewhere fancy type of coat. And as much as I hate to admit it: fancy wear tends towards black because it’s classic. I’d probably switch up the belt or make a new sash to go with it and coordinate it with my outfits, though.

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From Simply Be.

Y’all, I really, REALLY want a cape. Now, when it finally does decide to get and stay cold up here in NYC, it’s probably not going to be the most practical without plenty of layers. So why even want it? Arm room! I have large arms, and I have to often size my tops and coats to fit them, at the expense of fit everywhere else. Capes help alleviate that problem, as there’s plenty of arm room, so I can still get a really nice fit everywhere else. As for the layering, I’m always putting a giant sweater under my coat, so that wouldn’t be an issue.

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From Torrid.

I also really want a moto jacket. This is more appropriate for the weird shifty weather we’re having now. Not only that, it also feeds the tough tomboy side of me, while still being elegant. This is another coat I wouldn’t mind doing in all black, because it just adds to the bad-ass persona.

Hey, dress for the personality you have, or the personality you want! (Or both!)

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From Old Navy.

Normally, if I’m looking for a coat on a budget, I head to Old Navy. Now, they don’t carry plus sizes in the store (*side eye*), but I’ve had great success getting the 2xl (and no issues with the arms). This particular coat comes from the plus size collection, and I just got it in the mail a couple of days ago. I got the 4x, thinking about layering, and I could have just as easily done the 3 or even 2x and had plenty of room for both my arms AND my chunky sweaters. I picked this up because of the hood. When the wind whips around up here it can cause an instant migraine, and my ‘fro is starting to get too big for a proper hat. This hood is nice and warm, and it keeps the wind out of my face. Also handy for the snowy days that will soon be upon us.

So there you have it! My picks for elegant and warm coats for the season. Coming up soon: boots!

Retail Therapy Reviews Shopping

Halloween Round Up

Hey lovelies!

Sorry for the radio silence over here last week. Halloween is an insanely busy week for me at work, what with the supplies and the painting…

You know the deal.

Anyhow, I did make it a point to adorn myself last week, so I wanted to give you the two nail looks and the Halloween face I did.

Let’s hop to it!

I love holidays because it always brings the really adorable seasonal beauty stuff. Eyelashes go on sale, special nail polish shades, glitters and kits come out. This is the time of year to stock up on things for my kit.

This year was no exception. I found some water decals in Walgreens. Water decals are like tattoos for the nails. Put them over a nail color or on bare nails=instant nail art without a lot of effort. I also found some nice nail wraps for me to try. So, on a particularly lazy Saturday, I set up shop and got started:

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I was still getting over a horrid cold, hence the Gatorade and tissues in the background. Feeling much better now, though. :)

Oh, yeah. I never know how to buy just ONE thing. Although, I did have some of that stuff already.

Listen, I have to tell myself that to keep from thinking I’m not such a beauty junkie. :D

After getting my base colors down and decals on, here was my manicure for the first half of the week:

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The black nails glowed in the dark! The decals were quite easy to work with, although I will caution you to make sure your base colors are completely dry. This is not a case to have a slightly sticky nail, otherwise you will ruin your decals.

Later in the week, when I had an extra hour to myself, I decided to switch up the design. I had an event that week, and wanted to keep it festive, yet simple.

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Frankie there wasn’t hard to do at all. If you have a nail pen, it would be even easier to do. I don’t have one with as fine a tip as I like, so this was all stripers and dotting tools. Take your time; you’ll surprise yourself! Also, the other nails were glow in the dark. China Glaze has (had? I picked it up last year) glow in the dark polish that’s transparent: so you can layer it over any shade.

And finally: my costume. Ok. I’d originally planned to do a sugar skull themed costume, and the more I did research on it, the more I thought it might not be such a good idea. I was dressing for work, and did not wish to offend, so I decided to switch it to something else entirely.

I went as a Butterfly Garden.

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The wings are just printouts. Yep, printer paper! If you were reading me last year, you’ll note they are the exact same wings I used for my moth costume. (These are, in fact, moth wings.) So many people thought they were butterfly wings last year, I decided to recycle last year’s wings for this year’s look. Didn’t hurt that it matched my flower dress, either (Got it on clearance from CityChic earlier this year.)

I added some nail rhinestones to frame my brows and the inner corners of my eyes (I used eyelash glue to stick them on), and a chunky flower necklace. Lashes are by Ardell; came in one of the many kits they set out for Halloween this year. I wore my owl earrings (because birds are totally in gardens, of course) to finish off the look. It was a huge hit with my coworkers and customers alike.

For those who wonder what the fun in dressing up is: I get enjoyment watching others enjoy my work. The best reactions I got were from adults, from the lovely chef who told me how much she loved my wings to the lovely waitress who asked for a picture. I get a lot of pleasure from others enjoying the effort I put in. And, it’s fun!

And that will do it for Halloween 2014! Hope all of you enjoyed the day, if you participate. If you did, please leave me a pic in the comments! I’d love to see how you (and/or your nails) dressed for the occasion!

Makeup Looks Nail Adventures

October Glossybox Review

You know, I almost didn’t sign up for Glossybox because I thought it was too much money for not enough goodies.

As time has gone on, and boxes have come, I am loving Glossybox more and more. This month is another winner!

Let’s get to the good stuff!

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Chock-full of goodness!

Matte Top Coat from Nails Inc.: I have heard such good things about this company, so I’m looking forward to trying this out. What I have found with matte topcoats so far is that they shorten the wear of your nail polish like crazy. Now, I prefer the glossy look, but on nights where matte nails work better, I put in all this work for it to be ruined by the time I get home. I hope this top coat will be different.

Tarte Cosmetics Power Pigment in Flush: Oh, y’all. This is a creamy, bold, beautiful color. I love the texture and I love the fact I don’t have to sharpen it (just twist up at the bottom.) It’s minty, and matte, but not drying. Love!

Vince Camuto Amore Eau de Parfum: When it comes to scents, I am picky. I am very picky. I have a sensitivity to smell like you wouldn’t believe: anything too strong and I have an instant migraine that will. not. go. away! This scent is beautiful, like soft flowers and fresh, light fruits without being too sweet. A little bit of sandalwood deepens it, but without it being too rich or heavy. I’m surprised I like it so much, but I really do.

Sesha Botanical Hydro Mask: I’ve never tried a mask from this brand before and I’m looking forward to trying it out. Masks are my favorite thing in the world to give my skin a quick pick me up. This mask has cucumber, green team and marigold, according to the insert, so I know it will give a soothing effect as well as improved hydration.

Proganix Volume Root Boost Finish: So, this product is supposed to give hair body and volume with soy protein and caffeine. While the idea of this intrigues me, I know I won’t be using this product on my hair. I probably could have used this on my relaxed hair, though. It does smell nice, though, so I will probably take this to one of the girls at work and see if she can make use of it. Pay the good stuff forward!

Bonus goody: A card worth $40 off of HelloFresh.com. I’ve been considering doing something like this. Essentially, you pick the recipes you want to create, and they pack all of the ingredients and deliver them to your front door with a handy info card. I’d love to do this if I wasn’t in an apartment. I may pass this on to the girls at work too, if I don’t try it out myself!

Another awesome box this month! Watch my Instagram for a look featuring Tarte going up today!

Reviews

Nail Adventures: Mentality Nail Polish It’s A Baby! Palette Review

When it comes to nail polish, I tend to be pretty mainstream. I usually stick with OPI, Essie, Orly, and the like. For some time, Julep nail polishes were as indie as I got.

Until now.

Mentality Nail Polish reached out to me and sent me their It’s A Baby! Palette for me to try out. Just looking at the bottles, I was skeptical, but then I did my swatches.

The finish is a jelly creme. Jelly polishes tend to be super sheer, with opacity nigh near impossible without some sort of opaque base coat. Creme polishes tend to be super opaque, usually with a shimmer or sheen to them, like pearl. Jelly creme polishes combine the best of both worlds. You can get a sheer wash of color with one coat, like the traditional jelly polish, or add an extra coat or two to get a more opaque look. All swatches shown are two coats of color and a high gloss top coat.

I didn’t find the formula streaky with two coats, but if you prefer a sheer look you may find a bit more streakiness if you only do one coat. The wear time, as long as you have a good topcoat, is pretty good. Even with me slinging boxes around, I didn’t find as many dings and chips.

Spectacular!

But you came here for the color, right? Let’s go!

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This is Delivery, a deep blue.

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This is Bearing, a gunmetal green.

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This is Peek-A-Boo, a happy, bright pink.

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And finally, my favorite, Hopscotch. This is a bright cerulean. Y’all know I dig bright colors. :)

I actually decided, while I was swatching, to use Hopscotch for a remake of a previous nail look. I love that this polish layers well, without that gummy thickness that you can get with other polishes. Mentality does a stamping collection, and I can see how their formula lends well to doing excellent nail art with. Oh, and it’s five free as well. :) Here’s the nail remake:

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The confetti on my ring finger is Maybelline’s Color Show in Nighttime Noise.

All in all, I am very impressed with the formula, colors, and price ($20 for all 4 colors!). Definitely looking forward to trying some other colors from them!

Disclaimer: The nail polishes from Mentality Nail Polish were provided to me in exchange for my honest opinion. All opinions are my own.

Nail Adventures Reviews

Nerdy Girl Adventures: Riddle Me This, Batman

I meant to have this post up Friday, but Life.

Then Hangover.

I had fun. :)

Anyway! I wanted to show you all the look I did for NYCC on Saturday (about a week ago.)

So, when we last left off, I’d changed my costume at the last minute.

I decided I wanted to be the Riddler. :D

I’d sourced new materials, and eagerly waited on them to arrive. I had two ways of doing it: either using paint, or using felt and a glue gun. I wanted the felt and the glue gun.

That didn’t show up until Friday afternoon. I didn’t procrastinate this outfit, though. It was already done by then.

I took this dress from Modcloth:

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Got some fabric paint (I used this), a sponge brush, and made a question mark stencil out of cardboard. About 3 1/2 hours later, I had this:

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Shoes are from Payless (I know!)

I also made myself a bowler hat. I just got a small party sized hat from Amazon (you could probably get them in bulk around this time of year) and added some rhinestones all over it:

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Now, the original design had the dress with black felt question marks all over it. But I have to admit, glittery just seems so…me. And of course, my nails had to coordinate:

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I really loved how everything came out! I also have a new respect for those cosplayers that actually do stitching and things. Just painting those question marks took absolutely forever, and taking the sleeves off the blouse I had on underneath the dress took another hour. That’s why I am already planning next year’s costumes. And next year? There WILL be Lady Joker.

Also: Jaime Bond.

:D

Crafting Nail Adventures NYCC

Nerdy Girl Adventures: Cosplay at New York Comic Con

I took pictures of damn near any/everything that moved at NYCC (with permission, of course.) And let me tell you, it took everything in me to cut down the pics I put in this post because it was well over 150 photos.

I’ll do my best to provide context and names of the characters listed. Ready? Let’s go!

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A beautiful Harley Quinn.

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I love the vibe this whole group gave off. My favorite would be the side-burned Joker there. Other characters include Batgirl, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, Harley Quinn, Riddler, and Aquaman.

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Rita Replulsa and Lord Zedd. Brought me right back to elementary school, coming home to watch Power Rangers!

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Scarecrow, Batman (who is 75 years young this year–the character, that is) and Robin. Robin was quite the handsome guy in person, let me say. :)

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Sailor Moon and the Crew (totally NOT what they’re called, btw. :D ) There were quite a few Sailor themed cosplays, including a group of guys. The guys had a Tuxedo Mask included in their group (and yes, it was a woman.) So cute!

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A very dapper Penguin.

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Marvin the Martian brings you peace, man.

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So, the Captain America at the top of the pyramid is holding what looks like a classic Super Nintendo game. In fact, it’s a flask. How fancy is that?

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I was on my way to pick up my things from coat check, and saw these two on the way there. How spectacular is this Jareth  and Sarah cosplay?

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I actually interrupted the conversation I was having when I saw this crew come in. “OMG, is that Lego Iron Man?! I need a picture!” *zoom* Don’t worry, the person I was talking to was as excited as I was!

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Predator!

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This is Phoenix Wright. He’s a lawyer whose fighting tactics include throwing paper work and gavels (seriously!) I should note the cosplayer shouted “Objection!” as he posed, which made C and I crack up.

Oh, and the word “Objection!” will come up in the video game when he does that move. Here’s a video that shows it (you want to look about 58 seconds in):

Memes also made their way into NYCC. Here are my two favorites (with memes right next to them):

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When I first took a pic of this guy, he ended up having to answer the phone in the middle of my shot.  When he hung up his call, he graciously posed with the sign for me. I say he did a pretty good job!

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C and I saw this guy and immediately cracked up! Annoyed Picard is one of my favorite memes.

And finally, here’s the shot that C says perfectly captures the spirit of NYCC:

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I actually got to NYCC earlier than C and my nephew on Sunday, so I decided to meet up with a friend of mine I hadn’t seen since college. As he and I tried to figure out where the other was, Doc Oct there came walking past me. As I stopped him to snap a photo, I notice he’s looking behind me. Confused, I turn around. Who do I see?

Spider Man.

Doc: “Spider Man! I thought I killed you!”

Spidey: “Doc, you can NEVER kill me!”

And they jumped into the pose you see here.

Me: “OMG I NEED A PICTURE OF THIS!!”

And here it is. Two complete strangers hamming it up for people’s cameras and entertainment. They shook hands as they parted ways.

Man, NYCC is like nothing else. If you ever have a chance to come and experience it yourself, please do! You won’t regret it.

Tomorrow: the unveiling of my cosplay. See you then!

Crafting NYCC