Rachel Awtrey

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My Sephora Picks

It’s fun to go makeup shopping, looking at all the colors, sorting through the pallets, thinking through “what do I truly need/want.”

I’ve gotten to a point where my products, for the most part are “clean” and non-toxic. Surprisingly, there are some great non-toxic picks at Sephora that I cannot go without. Here they are! If I’m ever going into Sephora, I don’t ever exit with at least one of these!

What are your Sephora favorites?

 
Old Navy Sale!

It’s true! It’s true! If you know anything about me, you know that I love a good sale and I love sharing it with friends! So, here you go! Old Navy is hosting their Friends and Family sale but quick! It ends Sunday, November 4 at the end of the day! If you missed it, no biggie! These picks are still some of my favorite fall staples! Joggers, sweaters, color blocked shirts, all of the goodies for the Holidays coming up!

 
My Mascara Picks
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Mascara is my thing! Mascara completes any look, all you do is swipe on and go! Or, at least, that’s the hope, right? For many years, I was having to spend a few minutes just on my lashes to make sure they 1) weren’t “clumpy” 2) they were separated and covered well and 3) having to apply multiple layers just to get the look I wanted.

Now, I have found the way to go about doing my lashes with my four favorite that I always have in my makeup bag. They’re all very different and you may prefer one over the other depending on your lash type. I’m digging into all of the details below on what you should know about each to get the lashes to the perfection you’ve always wanted!

Better Than Sex by Too Faced

This is my absolute favorite, hands down. There’s not many mascaras out there that can out preform this bad boy. An awkward and unfortunate name, but a great mascara! It goes on thick with only one or two swipes. The “fluffiness” of the brush allows all of your lashes, inside and out, to get reached when applying. It’s a little bit more expensive than regular mascara but trust me, it’s worth the splurge. The only thing I would change about this formula is the small amount of flakiness that you may find under your eyes after about 10 hours of wear. It’s not noticeable unless you look in a magnified mirror - just wanted to be honest! My friends with shorter lashes are not fans of this particular mascara but if you have medium to longer lashes, you’ll appreciate this one!

L'Oréal Lash Paradise

People will say that this mascara is the “dupe” for the one above. Although it’s similar, it’s definitely not the same when you look at performance. I wish I could say it was because the price is substantially less expensive but you’re paying for what kind of quality you’re getting. It’s a thicker mascara than other drug store brands, but doesn’t go on as seamlessly as the one above. The packaging is similar and the thickness of the actually formula is similar, that’s about it. I found that my lashes were clumping rather than being evenly separated like the Too Faced mascara above. Just my personal opinion! Others love it, so it may be something to try out if you’re on a budget but still want a thicker mascara!

L'Oréal Voluminous Million Lashes

This one was my absolute fave before I found the ones above. If you have shorter and/or thinner lashes, this could be for you! It’s all about volumizing those puppies so you’ll find that this formula may take a few more minutes of application to get the same affect but you have more control since it’s a bit thinner.

Beautycounter Volumizing Mascara

You’ll either absolutely love this or hate it - I’ve heard people feel both about this one! However, this has been a staple of mine for about a year now! It’s another “quick swipe” one that you’ll love if you like a quick routine. It’s luxurious for several reasons: it’s clean, there’s no harsh chemicals, there’s no flaking and it lengthens and adds volume to your lashes. However, it is a thinner formula and takes a few layers of application to get the same affect as the ones above.

If you’re looking for a new mascara, any of the ones above are top notch and out-preform all of the other hundreds of mascara types and brands on the same shelves! You can’t go wrong with any of these and these are four of the best that I always keep on hand! I can’t wait to hear what you think! What are you favorite mascara brands?

My Fall Decor Picks

Now that it finally feels like Fall around here in Birmingham Alabama, I’m finally bringing out the pumpkin decor, lighting my scented candles and making all of the spiced baked goods.

I’m decorating corners of my house to show off this fun Autumn season to all of the friends and guests I host! To be honest, I wasn’t super impressed with a lot of the options this year but I did find a few golden nuggets so I figured I’d share them with you!

 
The Best Fall Mug
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Couldn’t wait any longer to share with y’all my favorite fall mug I got! My friends at Darling Savage were nice enough to give me a code for y’all to use too! I’ve tagged their website below so go ahead and treat yourself to one of these AMAZING mugs! Use the code “AWTREY20” for 20% off!

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Let Me Introduce Myself

We’ve added a few new friends to this “team” of ours so I figured I’d share a few things you can expect + get pumped for around here! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
1. We love sharing sales + good steals and deals! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
2. I share recipes that will IMPRESS YOUR BOO + change the game in your kitchen 🍲🍴 ⠀⠀⠀ 3. I like taking care of myself and will share health tips + tricks (like these blue light glasses 👓🤓) but also ways to treat yo’self and splurge (like my new fave nail color or Ben and Jerry’s flavor 🍦💕) ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
4. My husband and I just bought a freakin’ house so you can expect lots of fun decor ideas + places to buy your next fave piece for your home. 🏡 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 5. Annnnnnd as a “thank you” I love giving away “happys” and random + frequent giveaways should be no surprise ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Xoxo,
Me

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Daily Devotional
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My thought this morning:
What if my obedience assists in someone else’s breakthrough?
What if my boldness brings about someone’s freedom?
It’s bigger than us. ✨ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Also, loving “New Morning Mercies” by Paul David Tripp - if you’re looking for a daily devotional, look no further! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
And if you’re looking for a Bible, try the @shereadstruth Bible! It has devotionals throughout with maps, helpful information to fully understand scripture and other fun stuff! 🙌🏻

I Hope You Feel Strong

When you look in the mirror, I hope you feel strong.
Not because of how “fit” or “tone” you are. 
Not because of the size of your jeans or how many rings you completed on your Apple Watch that day (guilty).
But because of how our bodies were created to live, because of what our bodies can do, what we can lift, what we can go through, what we can accomplish with what we’ve been given. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
It’s bigger than being our “prime” weight or what’s on our plate. It’s about acknowledging our Creator and all of the ways He has made us to do incredible things and respecting His talent at creating a beautiful and powerful thing like you + me. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
So friends, I hope you feel strong.
💪🏽💪🏻💪🏾💪🏼💪🏿

California Tree House Home Tour

If you’ve been following our journey for a while then you know that Thomas and I live in Northern California in the summertime (April through august) and Birmingham, AL during the other seasons. Thomas’s current job takes us out there while he works and helps operate a guest ranch - so we get to call a cozy little cottage “home” a few months out of every year.

Just because we only live there for a few months doesn’t stop us from making it a place to rest, retreat and host our friends. This summer was my favorite version of our “home” yet so I  thought to share it with you all.

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When we arrived, our kitchen cabinets were wood, and because our house sits back in the forrest, it tends to be pretty dark and lacking natural light. To lighten up our home, we decided to paint the cabinets white and add faux subway tile to the walls and it made all the difference. The details of our French oven/stove, the French country cookbook and more made it the perfect space to greet friends, make cookies and frozen pizzas, and enjoy the morning light.

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The living space was tons of fun. We had countless movie nights, Bachelorette premieres, gathering of friends and afternoon naps. We added our favorite pieces from Carolyn Johnson Art and an inexpensive brass mirror to the wall behind the sofa. This coffee table is perfect for the minimal look while also being functional our Cord and Cotton rug added the color we needed to lighten up the space.

Right behind the living space was a tiny room that we used for guests. We had a friend visit us from the west coast, my mother and sister in law and my mom so we kept the room full!

The wooden accent wall was the perfect touch for a “treehouse in the woods” and the other wall was decorated with our favorite posters from Magnolia Homes.


 
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Our bedroom was the lightest, brightest and biggest room of the house and we loved that! We kept the bedding light with accenting with our Cord and Cotton rug, again. The walls were covered with windows and invited all of the light in every morning. This was Remi’s favorite room, too! We added greenery with this faux fiddle leaf fig tree potted in this basket from The Basket Room, we loved the colors and the size! At first we used it for our cycling gear/storage and loved how it hid what we needed to be accessible in the most precious way.

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This home was cute, quaint and stuck in the middle of the forrest with trees surrounding it and the sound of a creek not too far away! We miss it so much and the memories made there but will treasure the ones we make and create back here in Birmingham.

Spaghetti Squash Boat
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The spaghetti squash boat - a family fave around the Awtrey household.

It’s the simple, super cheap and “healthy” version of your typical spaghetti dish. It’s also a great meal if you live by yourself, or one other person because it makes two simple portions so easily!

I like this low-carb meal and often result to it when we have busy days because it takes little tending to *cue the kitchen dance parties*!

Here’s all you’ll need:

Ground Turkey (or beef, your preference)
Your favorite jar of marinara
One spaghetti squash

Here’s how:

  1. Preheat your oven to 450 for a quick cook

  2. Cut your spaghetti squash in half long ways so that the spaghetti squash takes an ovular shape*

  3. Pour olive oil and add salt to the inside of the spaghetti squash

  4. Lay the spaghetti squash flat side down on a sheet and place in preheated oven. Cook for 30-40 minutes until the edges are brown**

  5. While the spaghetti squash is cooking, brown your ground meat in sauce pan on medium-high heat

  6. Once meat is cooked thoroughly, add your jar of marinara and reduce heat to a simmer

  7. When spaghetti squash is finished cooking, remove the sheet from the oven, flip the spaghetti squash over and remove the seeds from the pit of the squash with a spoon or tongs.

  8. Once pitted, you’ll see that the spaghetti squash takes a “bowl” shape and there is now room to add your desired amount of marinara and meat.

  9. Garnish with parmesan cheese, oregano or any of your favorite toppings

  10. Serve and enjoy!


Here are my tips + tricks

*Heat the entire spaghetti squash in the microwave for about 30-45 seconds to soften the shell + inside for an easier time cutting

**I remove the seeds after it has cooked in the oven because, rather than it being like scraping the inside of the pumpkin, the seeds are now softer and come out more easily.

I also decided to serve my spaghetti squash as a “boat” or “bowl” because the dish stays warmer longer. I’ve found that when I scrap out the squash, it cools quickly leaving my guests (and husband) with a cold meal.

Enjoy!!