Beautycounter Vs My Routine

Cleaning Up My Makeup Routine

In the past few years, as I’ve been cleaning up the rest of my life, I’ve become more and more interested in the chemicals myself and my family are using in our homes and on our bodies every day. As a mom and general human being trying to leave this planet better than I found it, I was horrified to find out how much toxic crap is in EVERYTHING we use on a daily basis. From home cleaners to hairspray, the more I learned the more I wanted to do something about it. But there is one problem…I’m not an A+ mom! Sure, I have the best intentions to feed my kids organic kale, but then they throw a fit and it’s late and we end up ordering pizza instead. Sometimes you have to pick your battles!

So any time a brand comes along that offers me the ability to get the toxic chemicals out of our routine, but is also EASY to use and implement, I’m all for it! I was so excited when a friend started working with the incredible company, Beautycounter, and offered me the opportunity to test out their products for a few days. I was super impressed with the quality of everything Beautycounter offers, and their mission is pretty incredible. Did you know there are over 10,000 ingredients used in personal care products…but only 10% of these have actually been tested to ensure they are safe for human health?! And many of these ingredients have been linked to health problems such as cancer or reproductive health. That’s insane. Beautycounter was started by a mom who was sick of the risks she and her family were taking by not knowing what was in the products they used on their bodies. Their mission is to get safe products in to the hands of EVERYONE.

The issue that I’ve often found when using more natural products, especially makeup, is that it doesn’t work as well as my regular products. So I decided to put the Beautycounter line to the test! Many of you know I’ve been asked to come on a few morning shows in the Kansas City area lately, and that is probably the time when I wear the most makeup. My daily routine is pretty tame, but when I’m on camera I pull out the big guns! So I decided to do my last appearance wearing only Beautycounter products…and it went great! The makeup not only looked awesome when I applied it, it didn’t melt under the big studio lights!

I put together this little comparison of the products I generally use when I’m being filmed versus the Beautycounter products. The numbers are from the Environmental Working Group, which ranks products based on what chemicals are used in them and how safe they are. Anything from 1-3 is considered very good, 4-6 is medium and 7-10 is highly hazardous. My regular products are on the left and Beautycounter is on the right…check out how they ranked.

Beautycounter Vs My Routine

Yikes, right? Pretty scary stuff. After I experienced how well the Beautycounter products worked, I immediately started replacing my makeup stash. It’s definitely an investment, but as long as I’m only replacing an item or two at a time, I can make it work. I’m so grateful a company like Beautycounter exists and is making it easier for moms like me (ahem, B+ moms) to better our health!

Beauty Counter + Oils

If you’re interested in learning more about Beautycounter and Young Living Essential Oils (which I’ve talked about on the blog here) and you’re in Kansas City, I will be co-hosting an open house event with my sister next Wednesday, April 20th! From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and then again from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., you can come sample all the wonderful skincare, cosmetics, body, kid and baby products by Beautycounter and the awesome oils and health products by Young Living Essential Oils. I will also be providing iTovi scans, which will provide you with an analysis of your body chemistry and tell you what you need more of to live at your healthiest! If you’d like to join us, please send me an RSVP at for location details and more information. Hope to see you there!

A Preschooler’s Guide to Kansas City!

Last week I made a huge leap for my business…I upgraded my camera! (For all of you camera nerds, it’s a Canon 5D Mark III and it’s AMAZING…) But of course, right after I brought home my new baby, Tate had the entire week off of school. I didn’t have much time to play around with my camera, and I knew I had some big shoots right around the corner, so we decided to make the best of it. Tate picked his five favorite places in Kansas City, and we brought along the new camera so that we could get to know each other a little better. In the end, I found we had a bunch of fun footage, so we put together this little video of our week!

Tate’s favorite places in Kansas City include…

  • Fritz’s Railroad Restaurant – Where a train drops your food off right at your table and you order using and old school telephone!
  • The Nelson-Atkins Museum and Sculpture Garden – Tate’s favorites are the knights in armor display, the Egyptian and mummy display and the glass labyrinth.
  • Top Golf – This kid would spend his entire life at Top Golf if he could. If you going during a weekday morning it’s half price!
  • Science City at Union Station – We got family passes this year and we are loving having them when we need a fun, indoor activity.
  • Little Freshie – The best snow cones in the city, hands down. And their Ginger Fizz is what my dreams are made of!

With summer coming, we are on the lookout for some good, local activities…what are your favorite things to do in Kansas City?

April Fools 2016

Happy April Fools Day! I feel like this is another one of those holidays you either love, or you totally can’t stand. I fall into the “love” category, but I forgot it was April Fools until a bit late, so I threw together some last minute pranks for the kids. But the best part was that Lucy had been looking for prank ideas herself, and had planned the SAME PRANKS to play on Tate that I was going to play on her. Great minds think alike! We froze cereal overnight for a silly breakfast, put googly eyes on the fruit in our fruit bowl, and Lucy also made some “brownies” (ahem…brown, E’s) for her class at school.

April Fools Ideas for Kids

Hope you all have a prank-filled, fun April Fools Day!

Photos + Tips + Tricks : Spring Break 2016

Clearwater Beach Sunset

I’m still in Spring Break Recovery Mode (Defcon 10). There is something to be said about traveling to a different time zone AND traveling on daylight savings time. Yikes. But was it worth it…? Um, yes, it was definitely worth it!

Clearwater Beach 2016

We spent the first few days staying at my parents’ condo in Dunedin, Florida (right outside of Clearwater) and visiting some of our favorite spots. This was a great way to save a little money, and we were so grateful for the option. We hadn’t been to Honeymoon Island in years, probably since Lucy was a baby, so I was really excited to spend the day there. It’s a Florida State National Park, so the wildlife and landscape are gorgeous! The kids loved the big waves and learning to body surf. They also made approximately 1 million sand castles. They are officially sand castle architects, and don’t you tell them otherwise! Sand castle making is apparently serious business. My parents have a yearly membership to the park, but you can get a day pass for $8 per car.

Honeymoon Island

We also spent a day at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, one of my absolute favorite places in Clearwater. If you’re ever in the area, this is a must-see. Before you visit, go watch the movie Dolphin Tale (available on Amazon) which tells the story of one of the aquarium’s stars, Winter the dolphin, who lost her tail in a crab trap incident. The CMA is a full time animal hospital, with a mission to rescue hurt or sick marine life, rehab them, and then release them back into the wild. When the animals are unable to be released due to medical issues, the CMA houses them and the public can enjoy them. I love the CMA because of it’s mission and because of how my daughter lights up whenever we visit. For some extra fun (and shorter ticket lines) try visiting the Winter’s Dolphin Tale Adventure exhibition, which is located just across the water from the aquarium. You can buy your aquarium tickets there, and then take either a trolley or the water ferry to the aquarium (for free!), skipping long lines and traffic. They also have tons of fun artifacts from the movie, and my kids got a kick out of seeing props from the movie in person.

Clearwater Marine Aquarium

We decided to get a hotel on the beach for our last few days in the area, and we were so thankful the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach offered to host us! We adore the Hyatt for it’s beautiful amenities and awesome kids programs, and we were so pumped to stay there again. Clearwater Beach is busy this time of year, and buzzing with lots of activity. We had a beautiful room overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, but the kids rarely wanted to stay in the room! We spent most of our time outside, either at the beach or the incredible hotel pool. We also walked down to our favorite mini golf spot, rented a family bike, and spent some time at the Sunset on Pier 60 celebration, where we bought some local art and knick knacks to remember our trip (and if you’re following me on Snapchat, you saw some hilarious video of Tate dancing with a busker dressed as a transformer!). We were also lucky enough to have a kid-free afternoon, thanks to the Camp Hyatt program. We dropped the kids off for a few hours of crafts, pool time and fun, while Trent and I had lunch on the beach, read by the pool, and then topped it off with a massage at the Sandava Spa.

Clearwater Beach 2016

Clearwater Beach 2016

All in all, it was the perfect family vacation! A few random tips…if you’re staying at Clearwater Beach for your entire trip, there is a lot of public transportation, but since we were splitting our trip into two parts, we did end up renting a car. And we flew United for the first time in years, and I can’t say enough good things about them! Usually flying with the whole family can be a bit of a pain, but United did an awesome job. They actually sat us all together (which never happens) and the service was awesome. Yay for easy traveling!

Clearwater Beach 2016

(You can see our past tips and tricks for traveling to Clearwater with younger kids here.)

Clearwater Beach 2016

Elsewhere : The Kansas City Moms Blog

Ever wondered how I went from a mom who worked out of the home 50+ hours per week to a work-at-home mom with her own business? Well, I’m sharing the whole story over on the Kansas City Moms Blog:

But I still felt like something was missing. As my children grew, I found it was harder and harder to balance my high stress job with my parenting duties. My husband’s company became extremely successful, and he was less and less able to pick up the slack on the home front. We were all exhausted, and together, we decided a change had to be made.

You can read how it all came together over at Becoming a Mom Boss on the Kansas City Moms Blog!

You can also read my post on my complicated relationship with Facebook, and how I think we should all probably just move on over to Snapchat:

Ahhh, Facebook. I have a love/hate relationship with the king of social media platforms. Yes, it provides me with entertainment in those times when I just need a break from the insanity of life as a mother of small children. But sometimes it feels like a black hole from which I can never escape! One minute I’m commenting on my childhood friend’s new vacation photos, and before I know it, two hours have passed and I’m wondering what I’m doing with my life!

Read more at Is Facebook on Its Way Out? on the Kansas City Moms Blog.

Are there any other parenting topics you’d like to see me cover? Send me a note at or drop me a comment below!

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