Love Notes by Lauryn is now Lauryn Ashli.
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Friday, October 9, 2015

Halloween Party on a Budget!

Every year since we have been married, my husband and I throw
a Halloween party for our family and friends.
It's tradition!
Well this year, we are working toward getting the hubby through with his undergraduates
to be able to apply for dental school.
I've also been staying home with the baby and needless to say,
our party this year had to be on the cheap!
So here are some budget friendly ideas for your Halloween shin-dig this year.

Naturally, if you are going to have a party you will need to send out invitations.
If you want a darling place to go, check out Paperless Post.
Their invitations are PERFECT. With so many lovely options.
When a representative reached out to me asking if I'd be interested in posting about their product,
I had never heard of the company.
When I saw all the beautiful images and options I couldn't help but jump on board!
Not only do they have invitations, but cards, stationary, and more!
Here are some of my favorite halloween invitations from the website.
And some of these are completely free... I can handle that!

Here are a bunch of diy decoration ideas:
-tassel garland
-halloween paper pennant banner
-decorated mason jars
-black yarn shaped into a spider web
-paper pinwheels 
-painted pumpkins
-photo booth
-decorated front doorhalloween decor

Any real budget party calls for a ....POTLUCK!!
As the host, you provide the main dish.
Something like crock pot pulled pork, chili, or soup does just fine.
When sending out your invite, ask each guest to bring a side or a dessert.
If you choose you can assign someone to bring rolls and drinks or provide them yourself.
For a fun, inexpensive drink we always resort to
homemade root beer and cream soda with dry ice.
Easy, cheap, and festive!

After throwing a few Halloween parties,
I've found that the simple games end up being the most fun.

Here's a few of our favorites:
-the "bowl" game-
Our awesome friends taught us this game.
It is seriously so fun and all it costs you is some paper!
Directions can be found here.

-heads up-
This is the game you see people playing in lines at Disneyland
and there is currently a Charlie Brown Halloween deck that is pretty fun to play.

-minute to win it-
There are really so many Halloween Minute to Win It games.
I found some fun lists here:

-relay race-
You can do things like, wrap yourself like a mummy,
fly on a broomstick, bob for apples, etc.

-pumpkin ring toss-
Use the pumpkins from your contest (below)
and some mason jar lids for a fun ring toss area.

For our party, this is where we are choosing to spend a little money.
Each winner gets a $5-$10 gift card,
but you could do a king size candy bar or a liter of soda to keep it inexpensive!

-costume contest/parade-
If you want to costume parade for the little kids
put on some fun music and have everyone walk in a designated pathway.
After the parade, everyone puts in a vote for the favorite-
this can be done by collecting pieces of paper or by "shouting".
Host declares a winner and winner takes home their prize!

-timed pumpkin carving contest-
Have each guest who wishes to participate bring a pumpkin to carve or decorate.
Time the contest for 30 minutes then declare finished!
Each pumpkin is then taken to be displayed and voted upon by other guests
(no voting for your own!).

-guess the candy amount-
A classic game, but is a nice activity for people to do when they first arrive.
Have one or a few jars filled with candy corn, Recess Pieces, or Halloween M&M's.
Count how many you put in each jar.
Guests write their name and estimate on a piece of paper and put it in a bowl.
Winner gets the jar!
Bonus: This activity can also double as decorations. :)

Halloween is my absolute FAVORITE holiday. Can't wait to throw this fun party!
Tell me how yours go too!

Friday, October 2, 2015

At Home Manicure Essentials

I am one of those people who truly believes manicures are necessary.
Call me a princess, but I hate when my cuticles get nasty and my nail beds need filed.
So I regularly get a manicure...from myself. ;) 
Super easy, as long as I use these tools. 
Here's the step-by-step process I use. 
Done in 15 minutes or less. Oh yeah, baby.

Prep your cuticles.
Use any cream or oil to soften up your cuticles. 
I like OPI Avoplex.

Push cuticles back with orange sticks.
You can pick them up at basically any drug or super store.
Or buy them on Amazon here.

File File File.
With a course file (I use the Trim brand), file your whole nail
including the cuticles and the sides to grab any hang nails.
Continuing use of the course file, shape the nail how you want.
Once you've done that, use the 7-way buffer/file on each nail.
I also use the Trim brand for my buffer. 
There are 7 parts on the buffer, you just follow the order on there..and it finishes with a shine!

Use a cuticle trimmer.
Be careful not to over cut your cuticles. You don't want any bloody fingers!
Just make sure you get the excess.

Wash & Scrub.
Using a sugar scrub of some sort, wash your hands in warm water for about a minute.
I LOVE Bath & Body Works' Just A Minute Scrub.

Trust me, your freshly exfoliated fingers will be so happy to be moisturized.
It's best to use a hand cream...
I love the Look Ma New Hands also from B&BW.

Base Coat/Color/Top Coat
Use a towel to remove the lotion oil from your nails.
Use a base coat, a color if you want, and finish with a top coat.
My favorite base coat is Revlon Colorstay Base Coat
 & my favorite top coat is the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Top Coat.

Now enjoy your beautiful, soft, fresh hands!

♥ ♥ ♥
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