The Busy Giffs: October 2017

October 23, 2017

Getting Pretty at Salon V Beauty Lounge

Can I start off by saying I love that I have a job where I follow my dreams?
You may or may not know that I just took a super scary jump and changed from the familiarity of teaching English to high school students to being a Special Education teacher for those same kids! I've always wanted to get into Special Education, knowing that one day I want to be an administrator, but it's scary leaving something safe and comfortable for something unknown!

I'm super excited to announce that my friend also made a huge jump this year-- leaving education and opening up her own salon! Granted, she was a vocational teacher in the cosmetology department so it's not a huge jump... but owning your opening up your own business is crazy! This isn't like me and my shampoo, you know, where it's just me and my box of samples in my living room... her new salon is a full out brick and mortar and I'm obsessed for her!

Vanessa has been doing my hair for almost 2 years now. I fell in love with her and her love of color and haven't gone to anyone since.  She's turned my hair a gorgeous ashy brown, a super fun platinum blonde, and even put pink streaks in my girl's hair! I trust her more than anyone else I know so I was determined to be one of her first clients in her new space!

It's gorgeous to walk into...





It's calm and fun all at the same time.  Vanessa is a classy kind of lady but it really shows in her salon. I love how gorgeously understated it is. The studio has 6 chairs so you really feel like family chatting with everyone.  I joke that spending time with Vanessa in one of her chairs in the best therapy I get, and her scalp massage while washing your hair is to die for....

And the color... oh emm gee! Vanessa is amazing when it comes to color and this visit was no different! I apologize for the Snapchat photos, but seriously, how else would I take a selfie...



It's the perfect fall transition for my super blonde hair.

In addition to hair, Vanessa offers waxing and it's the best ever. With super sensitive skin, I usually have to get my eyebrows done, you know the 4 times a year it happens, when I have no other plans for the day because I get so red and splotchy. Not this time! I don't know what magic miracle wax she uses but I was amazed at how little red there was and how quickly that small bit disappeared! I may be getting them done more often now!

Vanessa has also hired an amazing staff who can give great cuts and manicures. Emma needs a cut soon and I imagine she'll love getting her nail done after!

Salon V is located in New Bedford and you can check the salon out online at the Salon V Beauty Lounge Facebook Page. Let her know I sent you!


xo, Heather

October 18, 2017

Walt Disney World's Pop Century Resort

It's been a hot minute since we went to Disney in August, but I realized I never shared our thoughts on Disney's Pop Century Resort.

I will admit, I was a bit nervous. Last time we visited Disney, we stayed at a moderate level resort and Pop Century is considered a Value level resort. I know it's Disney, but still... I was nervous, afraid of a subpar hotel and oh my gosh, I was so wrong.

We loved the Pop Century Resort!


The entire resort is covered in Icon characters and theming...

Goofy, yo yo, travel

giant fooseball, travel

Jungle book, baloo, mowgli, travel

Mr and Mrs potato head




Even the check in area was lined with vintage and retro memorabilia that made me say oooh a few times!

Vintage retro toys


 At first, we were a little sad that we did not get put into the newly refurbished rooms (construction is currently underway) but since we were right in the main pool area, and we only spent like 7 hours total sleeping in the room each night, we got over it pretty quick.

The room was the perfect size for the 4 of us: 2 beds, a large closet area and a bathroom door that shut and left the vanity area accessible was perfect in the morning. The beds were comfy and there was even enough room to park the double stroller!





The best part of our room was where it was. Our room was extremely close to the main lobby, which meant we were very close to the game room, the dining hall, and Everything Pop Shop - which was perfect when we wanted a quick snack and when David needed cough drops!



However, the best part for me, was being literal steps from the pool.  Our ground floor room door literally opened right to the pools. 10 steps and we were at the gate for the kiddie pool/splash area, which was empty more often than not! This was perfect for our kids who can't quite swim yet but still wanted to splash and have fun!


 We did take advantage of the big flower shaped pool and the pool bar as well!



The resort also had laundry facilities and a walkway to the Art of Animation (which we explored!). Honestly, if I didn't know it was a Value resort at booking, I would not have known! We loved how comfortable it was and how close everything was to our room! We'll absolutely be staying again when we visit Disney World next time!

xo, Heather

October 9, 2017

Easy Halloween Brownies

Did you know that in addition to coffee and mac and cheese, Halloween is another one of those things that everyone else seems to love and I just don't?
I mean... there were stages of my life where I really enjoyed it, but I've never liked scary things...
I don't do haunted houses... I don't even like walking from my car to the house in the dark...
I don't watch scary movies...

Literally, my ideal Halloween now is taking my kids Trunk or Treating somewhere lit, where we're not walking on dark roads, and then coming home to watch It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown and Hocus Pocus while having a glass of wine and enjoying the candy I bought for the trick or treaters we never get.

I will admit though that my children love the idea of Halloween. Costumes, treats... they love it! They spent most of Saturday morning in their Halloween costumes and kept pretending to trick or treat around the house. I figured a good distraction was cooking or baking something since they love being in the kitchen.

I've been hankering for brownies lately so a quick boxed mix and the extra ingredients was an easy fix.  I used a shallow 13x9 pan and baked according to the directions. After letting them completely cool, we used our amazing circle cutter set (the same one we use for making our own Uncrustable sandwiches!) to make smaller circle brownies.

Last week, we picked up some ghost and pumpkin shaped marshmallows, as well as some candy eyes, so we knew they'd be the perfect decorations!


Simple food dye to some frosting gave us some color and the kids enjoyed adding the marshmallow toppers.


For the mummies, we frosted them with white, added 2 eyes, and then (using a sanwich bag with a hole cut in the corner) we added some lines to look like the gauze!

Frankenstein was easy as well: green frosting, 2 eye candies, and black decorating icing for the hair and mouth.  We even added two candy corn for his bolts!


I think they're adorable and were so easy to make!




Which design is your favorite?

xo, Heather

October 2, 2017

Apple Picking at Tougas Family Farm

I love apples. They get skipped over a lot by pumpkin, but I like to give apples the whole fall to be wonderful. My favorite thing is apple picking.  We've gone every year with the kids and it's just a great day, followed by great baking.  This year we ventured to Tougas Farms in Northborough.


We met up with my mom and sisters to go picking for the morning. Tougas Farm has you pay for the bag ahead of time.  The smaller bag, a Peck - about 10 pounds, is $30 and admits up to 4 people into the orchard. The larger bag is a 1/2 Bushel ~ 20 pounds. At $40 it admits up to 6 people into the orchard. We grabbed a larger bag and hopped on the hayride to the orchards (included in price). When you get off the wagon, they give a quick overview of what apples are where and then you're off. 




I love a good crunchy Honey Crisp apple so I loaded up on those! After we were done picking, we made our way over to the playground.



And checked out some wildlife...



Our trip wouldn't be complete without some cider donuts (gone before pictures could be taken- whoops!) and a few pumpkins!



It's a gorgeous farm that is well taken care of and we had such fun for the morning!
Where do you go apple picking? I'm always looking for new places to check out!

xo, Heather

Getting Pretty at Salon V Beauty Lounge

Can I start off by saying I love  that I have a job where I follow my dreams? You may or may not know that I just took a super scary jump a...

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