Review: Starbucks Berry Prickly Pear Frappuccino

Listen, I am a sucker for trying out pretty things. Sometimes I luck out and find something amazing, often I wonder why I wasted the money on something questionable rather than buying something I know I would like. Starbucks’ new drinks have definitely landed on the regret list this year.

I bought the Berry Prickly Pear drink mostly because “prickly pear” was in the title. I typically do not like berry flavored things (love berries though, don’t get me wrong) but I was intrigued. Unfortunately, the flavor didn’t sit well with me.


The berry syrup was way too thick and did not taste pleasant. The mango puree (which tasted a lot like a pina colada) that made up the body of the drink tasted amazing and definitely made up for the syrup, but about 2/3 of the way through the syrup took over and rendered the beverage undrinkable. Aside from being a gross flavor, the syrup was really thick and way too sweet. I felt like I was drinking sugar slime.

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I guess what I’m saying is.. Don’t do it. Maybe try the mango/pineapple version instead. That sounds tasty. Or maybe just get a coffee. Or drink some water and call it a day.

Did you try this drink? What did you think? How about the mango/pineapple?



What’s in my bag – Summer 2017


Hey nosy, interested in what I’m carrying around? Good, because I love these kinds of posts and I definitely want to know what you have in your bag, too.

I have been babysitting a lot the last few months and I seem to be always on the go. Because of this I carry around a lot of things that I would normally leave at home.. I also don’t get around to emptying out my bags as often as I should. I put 5 lip items in the picture.. But there are more. I won’t tell you how many.


Here is a general overview of what I’m hauling around. I did have time to do a general clean out this week so it’s not as bad as usual. However I do need to take some time this weekend to reduce the amount of beauty products I have and see what I can squish down. The only item that I did not picture is my medication because I don’t need you all THAT FAR in my business.

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As far as beauty items I am carrying around the Benton Honest TT MistBenton Honest TT Mist, which is a nice facial mist to use in the summer. It has tea tree oil (but no scent) and is very refreshing / good for breakouts. I also have the Too Faced Natural Matte palette, which is the first palette I bought and probably the one I will always have on hand.

As far as lip products, I have a Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella, Labiotte Wine Lip Tint, & 3CE Liquid Lip Color in #LowDown. I also have Biore UV Aqua Rich sunscreen, which is a good facial sunscreen to use as it does not contain acne triggers. I haven’t been using sunscreen as much this summer because I like having a little color, but I always use it if I know I’ll be in the sun for a long time. Sun burns are not good for you!


Two of my favorite purse items are my City Tin and my little iPhone fan. The City Tin was a gift to my mother that she passed on to me. It is a really cool project here in Madison that allows you to get $10 of any purchase over $25 at local restaurants. It’s an amazing deal. There is also a spinner inside that can help indecisive people make a decision about where to go.

The mini iPhone fan was a random find on State Street. It plugs into the charging port of the iPhone and works its magic. I am in love. It was a spur of the moment buy but no regrets, especially since it has already been so hot this summer.


Last but not least (because I’m not going to scare you with EVVVVERYTHING lurking in the depths of my bag) my planner and my new notebook. I bought this notebook a few weeks ago and my intention is to make a bullet journal. That has not happened. I would like it to happen. I would likely to retire my current planner, which looks like garbage, so that I can not look like a slob whenever I try to make plans. I also have a copy of Handmaids Tale (not pictured) which is the amazing book I am currently reading.

That’s it!

Please please please tell me (or even better, show me) what you have in your bag!

Curious to see how what I carry around has changed in the last year? Read my post from one year and four days ago. 

Seller Review: Tester Korea

I recently ordered from Tester Korea and wanted to share my experience. I usually order from Memebox and Amazon but I was looking for a specific product. The product (Dear by Enprani Moistfull Booskin) I wanted used to be on both websites, but Memebox has shut down and the product is not available on Amazon. Tester Korea was the website that I found with the best price so I decided to give it a shot.

User experience: As far as using the website, I didn’t have too many problems. The translation was decent but not perfect. I did not have any trouble navigating the website or understanding the details about what I was ordering. The site offers conversion rates, which was very helpful when I was deciding whether or not I could afford items.

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Pricing: I liked the pricing on this website. I didn’t see anything that was significantly overpriced, and a lot of the prices were better than Amazon or similar websites. They have discounts on many of the top items on the website, making them more affordable than other options. Unfortunately, there was no free shipping threshold when I ordered so I had to suck it up and pay for shipping.

Selection: I was SO BEYOND HAPPY to find two products that I really wanted on this website. The first was the Dear by Enprani Moistful Booskin, and the second was the Tony Moly Inked Cushion Gel Liner. Both were listed at a reasonable price and it was so nice to finally have these within reach. The website also had a number of interesting items on sale for low prices that I had not tried before, so I took advantage of the opportunity and tried out some new items.

Checkout: I had an easy time reviewing my purchases and verifying how much I had spent. For some reason my order is now showing conversion to won, but it showed how much everything cost in dollars when I originally placed the order. I like that they highlight the specifications of the products so it is less likely there will be a mistake before the package is sent out.

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Shipping: I placed my order on May 5, 2017, and received my order on May 26, 2017. I received updates about the package while it was in transit, and the package arrived secure and intact. Three weeks was not bad for a package to travel internationally without paying a huge amount of money.

Packaging: My order was packed perfectly. The box was a sturdy plastic and the items were well organized inside. The company used cute packing peanuts to stuff the box and keep the items secure. Everything arrived safe and sound with no issues.

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I really enjoyed ordering from Tester Korea. I was happy to get a new bottle of Moistfull Booskin and to finally try out the infamous Harry Potter inspired eyeliner. I would definitely order from this website again and recommend it to others, though I wish that the shipping was free or that there was at least a price threshold that I could reach to earn free shipping.

Interested in the content of the haul? There’s a blog post for that.

Have you ordered from Tester Korea before? What was your experience?

Weekly Exercise: June 12 – 18, 2017

This was a pretty good week for exercise! I am doing a much better job of forcing myself to workout even when I don’t want to.

Monday: I went to boot camp class and it was so unbelievably hot. The class itself was okay, but the temperature had been in the 90s all weekend and we could definitely feel it in the gym. We did a lot of cardio and strength training, and halfway through the class almost all of the other people were as sweaty and red as me. I’m usually the only person who looks like a boiled tomato at the gym, so that’s really saying something. When I was done I took a couple selfies.



Wednesday: I went to spin class. It was not eventful whatsoever.

Saturday: I had the weekend off so I finally got to go to a Saturday morning gym class. Anna and I went to Body Sculpt which focuses on dynamic strength training. It was a good class, though I never feel like I’ve done as much at this class as I do at any of the others I attend.



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Anna and I took a cute selfie..


I significantly increased the number of days that I met my fitbit goal, which I’m really proud of. I met my goal 4 days and had a nice number of steps for the whole week.

And that’s a wrap! I’m glad that I worked out a bit, but do wish I had done more. This week I would like to meet my fitbit goal every day, add in a Thursday workout and try to find time for the gym during the weekend.

Madison: Rose Show at Olbrich Gardens

Today we stopped by the Rose Show at Olbrich Gardens. This is the second flower show that I have attended there and I have loved both. Community members grow and cut rose and bring them in to be judged. After the show, the flowers are left on display so that anyone can take a look. While I don’t really know much about flowers, it’s really neat to go and see all of the different types of a specific flower there are and the variations. If you’re interested in checking out what events are coming up at Olbrich, click here.

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I didn’t even know that all of these were roses. What kind of flower show would you like to attend?

Travel: Hiking at Devil’s Lake State Park

Last Sunday I traveled to Devil’s Lake State Park with one of my friends to go hiking. This was one of the top 5 things that I wanted to do this summer. I have been wanting to go to Devil’s Lake for several years but haven’t been able to fit it in my schedule, so we decided to go late Sunday afternoon. We were extra happy when we found out that it was free state parks weekend!


Close to the beginning of our adventure. I was surprised by how difficult it was to walk up the trail! I workout regularly and still found it to be very intense.

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I promise I complained a lot about this IRL stair master.

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I was very excited to find a cave halfway along the way.

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This was my first time seeing this view in years, I had forgotten how pretty it is.

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Love this view and this woman.

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This was one of my favorite parts of the hike. The water was pretty, but I love the hills and green.

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Look at that little baby moon.

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An important part of a trip to Devil’s Lake is a ride on the Merrimac Ferry afterwards. My mom always brought us this way and it is a ton of fun. If you haven’t been on the ferry, you need to try it out! It’s free and there is a delicious ice cream stand.

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The ice cream is definitely one of the perks of taking the ferry.

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The beautiful view is pretty wonderful, too.

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We had an amazing trip. Do you think you’ll make it to Devil’s Lake this summer?

First Impressions: June Small Haul

I doubt that I will be buying many products in June. I have updated my routine with new products and have recently replaced the items I use that have run out. I am also moving and don’t need to add to the stress of that. However, I did ~need~ an oil cleanser, and I have been wanting to try out two other products.

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Victoria’s Secret Weightless Body Oil: While this product isn’t AB, I read a review somewhere and really wanted to try it out. I don’t use body oil on a consistent basis though I have purchased it in the past. I used it for the first time last night and was happy with the scent, which isn’t too overwhelming and smells like summer. I also liked that I felt moisturized but didn’t feel sticky, or like I should avoid touching anything. All in all, I’m already happy with the product.

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COSRX AHA/BHA Clarifying Treatment Toner: I remember this being the first AB product I heard about. My friend purchased it as her first AB item and let me know that it was amazing. Over the last year I avoided purchasing this product because I am a big fan of Stridex in the red box, and didn’t think that it was necessary to spend more than $5 on a BHA. However, I tried to find an AHA that worked for me and wasn’t able to. I tried the St Ives pads and really disliked them and in general, I don’t really want to spend money on anything else that I won’t use. So, I am going to give this a shot and see if it helps out. If not, I’ll decant and resell.

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Heimish All Clean Balm: This was the product that I needed to purchase. I had an oil cleanser that I used last year and enjoyed, but I stopped oil cleansing sometime during the year because I realized that it was something I did not need to be doing. I don’t have a need for daily sunscreen use and I don’t use makeup all over, so double cleansing is not always something that I need to do. However, now that it’s summer, I’ve noticed that my skin is breaking out more and it seems to happen after using sunscreen on my face. I’m hoping that adding this step back in will prevent that.

I really like this product already – I haven’t actually used it, but the packaging is wonderful and the smell is incredible. I am excited to try it out.

Thats it! Have you tried any products? What are your must haves this month?

Review: Skederm Snail Jelly Mask

Last night I had a friend over for beauty time and we tried out the Skederm Snail Jelly Mask. This was my first time using the mask and I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the product. I decided to purchase these masks because I had read a good review, and there was a 50% off deal for Amazon. I get a little nervous trying new products because I always worry that my skin will have a bad reaction, but these masks had ingredients similar to masks I’ve tried before.

The masks arrived as a 10 pack, and unfortunately, the box was squished. The masks themselves were fine, but I really enjoy nice packaging and was kind of bummed that Amazon didn’t package the product well.

When we took the masks out of the packaging, the first thing that I noticed was the texture. The product had a pleasant gel like consistently that instantly made me feel like my skin would be more plump after using. The masks contain snail secretion, which is in several of my favorite products that I used regularly and works really well with my skin. The mask itself was thin but not thin enough to fall apart or tear while opening.

My mask fit me perfectly, but it was too big for my friend’s beautiful face. My boyfriend also tried one on, and it was a bit too small in some areas and also hung off around his beard.

Here is a very lovely clip of the three of us wearing our masks.


Anna pointed out that I looked a litttttle bit cuter in my mask than she did in hers:


Annnd here is a photo of each of us with our masks on:


While the product itself was pretty wonderful, the mask fit my face the best of the three. Devon had a few issues due to beard life, and it was too big for Anna and kept slipping off, though she liked the serum. There are methods for cutting masks that might help them both have better experiences in the future.

We all really liked the serum and I personally felt like my skin was super moist and plump after using, and the entire day following. I am currently using a retinoid so I applied this after Stridex in the red box and the Retin-A cream, and did not have the usual dryness at the end of my routine.

Also, Anna is apparently a genius because after putting the mask on she took what was left of the serum from the envelope and rubbed it on her legs. I can’t believe that I never thought to do this myself.

I would definitely repurchase this product and recommend it to friends, so if you end up buying and trying it out, please let me know!


May Instagram Memories

The month of May was a mixed bag for me. I was kept pretty distracted by my grandpa being in hospice and a lot of doom and gloom at work. At the same time, Devon graduated college, our families came to visit, and I saw a lot of beautiful flowers. OH, and one of my best college friends moved away. It was definitely a month.

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Do you want to see my instagram posts right away instead of once a month? Click here to follow me 🙂

Top 5 things I want to do for myself this summer

I recently posted a list of the top five things I want to do this summer, but while I was putting it together I kept thinking of things I wanted to do for myself. I do a fairly good job of taking care of myself and my goals, but it never hurts to outline them and put some extra work into holding myself accountable.

1. Break even on my net worth: Between my student loans, car loan, travel habits, and regular monthly bills, I have not been able to break even on my net worth for years. I am currently sitting at a net worth around -$4,000, which is a big improvement over this time last year (-$12,000). While I’m proud of the work that I’ve put in to lowering my debt and saving for the future, I want to start grad school on a positive note financially. You know, before plunging tens of thousands of dollars into debt again.

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2. Lose 15 pounds: When will it not be a goal to lose 15 pounds? This goal is important to me because I love being active and fit and want to continue on a positive path toward good health.

3. Spend more time with friends: I am very lucky to have so many wonderful friends, both near and far. Unfortunately, I rarely spend time with them. It is way too easy to hang out with the people I see on a daily basis and not put any effort in to spending time with the majority of the people I care about. I would like to spend time with at least one friend each week who is not a part of my normal day-to-day routine.


Recent extremely enjoyable friend time.

4. Read a book: I am the absolute worst. I love reading, I request dozens of books from the library, and I have only finished a few so far this year. It’s unacceptable. I need to pick up a book and read it from start to finish.

5. Prepare for doing well in school: I want to be successful in grad school, so I need to do everything I can this summer to start off on a good foot. I would like to attend all of the grad school events that are scheduled this summer, buy some super adorable school supplies, figure out bus routes and class locations, and make sure that I do suuuppperrr well in my summer stats class.

What are some of the things that you would like to do this summer? How possible do you think they are, and what do you need to get you there?

OH I almost forgot – I have a goal of taking my dogs on a walk/to the dog park once a week. I don’t currently live with them but they are so happy when we go out together. I need to make sure this is a thing all summer long.