Monthly Archives: April 2016

My Scars Do Not Define Me

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MyMederma #CollectiveBias

My scars tell stories about triumph, terror, and perhaps lack of better judgement.  My scars do not define who I am as a person. I am so much more than the marks will ever amount to.  They are just a small part of who I am.  Today I am sharing about my story and how to in less than five minutes create a simple morning routine.


My Scars Do Not Define Me

When I was five years old I was playing in the front yard of a neighbors house.  In their driveway, away from the road a kind-looking golden retriever approached.  I pet the large dog for a bit before I turned to go home.  As I turned to go home I tripped on a small hole in the concrete and immediately the dog came over my back and begun tearing at my skull.  I remember screaming for help and trying to get the massive dog off my tiny frame but he was too heavy.  As I curled up in a ball on the pavement trying to hide my face the dog finally relented.  For no reason at all.

I took that chance and RAN.  I RAN as fast as my body would let me and not once did I look back to see if the dog had given chase.  My face was hot and wet and all I could think of is that if I could get back to my mom that she would protect me.  I took the porch steps two at a time and she met my screams at the front door.  I buried my face into her and just remember how wet it was.

So much blood.

My pediatrician met us at the door and had cleared his entire schedule.  They had to keep me awake and put me in a straitjacket as anyone knows, five year olds do NOT want to lay still when they are in pain, much less as they are stitched up.

Eighty-Eight stitches later and he saved me.

My skull was visible.  The nerves to my eyebrows were torn completely.  Dr. Berry of Tacoma, WA saved my life.  He also told me to, “Keep practicing with those eyebrows,” which I contend is the reason I over-emphasize my expressions… a bit… as I was told that there was a high probability that my forehead would never move.  I understand people pay A LOT of money for that.  But I like to make faces… so I win.  And I was five.

From a vicious dog-attack that nearly ended my life when I was five, to removing a mole that was pre-cancerous, to removing an active tumor from my face. There are some Arnold jokes that go along nicely with the tumor- I laugh so I don’t cry.  The doctor called me after cutting the inch-long deep chunk out of my cheek to tell me that it was a type of lymphoma-a very rare tumor.  Arnold Schwarzenegger, “It is a TUMOR.”

But my scars do not define who I am.


Honestly, after entering college and learning more about how to take care of my skin (the sun makes the scars more visible on my face) I started using Mederma® Advanced Scar Gel.  As a Freshman I used it on all of my older scars and new precancerous divots. Whatever you need to do to remind yourself to do that extra-teeny-tiny step to dab on Mederma-IT IS WORTH IT.  Guess what?  They will actually remind you to if you want them to send a gentle, daily reminder.

Five Minute Morning Routine


-Slather on the lotion.  Moisturizer is definitely a great way to get a smooth complexion.


-Apply Mederma to your scar tissue.  Spread evenly and read the directions!


Mederma available now with SPF

I’ve used Mederma® Advanced Scar Gel for over a decade on my facial scars and it REALLY WORKS. People say they don’t notice the scars…. they are either being extremely kind or my personality is finally bigger than my scars. Either way- the product works.  Truly.  Use it and it works.  Don’t use it and it doesn’t work. Simple.


I grabbed a new tube of each- Mederma® Advanced Scar GelMederma® Scar Cream Plus SPF 30 at our trip to Walmart last week.  Check out this fabulous- Mederma Buy, Snap, Get Program: HERE.


-Smooth creamy, liquid foundation over your face.  Set with mineral powder.


-Contour.  This is a work-in-progress area for me.  The palette makes it so much easier to get all of the colors done in seconds which as a busy mom of two is necessary in the morning.


-Finish with mascara, eyeliner, and brows.  I don’t wear any eye-shadow as I tend to prefer a more natural look and it helps to keep the time down.


Five Minute Morning Skincare Routine

The routine takes me a little less than five minutes. I do not wear makeup every day.  But I always wear moisturizer and apply Mederma.  So simple and so effective!

Look a little closer…


What COULD be what everyone sees first is now just a piece of who I am.  Through time and the use of Mederma the scar tissue has grown smoother and the discoloration less prominent.


Nighttime Skincare Routine

My nightly skincare routine is just as simple.  Wash, moisturize, and apply Mederma® Advanced Scar Gel.  I am thankful that the formulation worked on old scars (as I started using it in college) and new ones as I’ve gotten older.

Definitely exactly what you want when you have over 96- NINETY-SIX stitches that have laid claim to your face.  I don’t Photoshop my fine lines, acne, or scars on any photos… that would take FOREVER and goodness do I want my son and daughter growing up knowing that it is okay to have flaws.  That scars do happen and that they aren’t something to be ashamed of nor embarrassed by.

I would LOVE to hear about some scar stories.

Personal harrowing attempts to fjord a river?

A brush with a battle ax?

No but really,  I would love nothing more than to hear about your story and the scars that have left their mark behind.  Please share!

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FabFitFun -Spring Box

The FabFitFun Spring Box was chock FULL of fabulous full-size products!  FabFitFun releases hints on Instagram about products that may appear in their next boxes-LOVED seeing the sneak peeks and the excitement that followed each new clue.  Check out what I thought of the Spring Box and get a coupon code to grab one for yourself!

FabFitFun Spring Box


Herb Garden

Emma Marie and I made a MESS in the kitchen planting our first herb garden together.  Messes make memories.  She was so excited to help me and is enjoying watering the plants when they “get thirsty” as we like to call it.  Let’s hope my black thumb doesn’t kill these poor herbs.  A two year old is counting on me.  Must not let her down.

The Herb Garden by MakersKit contains: Basil, Parsely, Mint.


Our Kitchen Herb Garden


The Yoga Mat Strap

The Yoga Mat Strap by Merrithew is a fabulously sweet find to help regain some of my flexibility back and stretch out my body.  You can use it as a resistance cord for strength training or as an alternative to a yoga mat bag.


ISH Contour Kit

Contouring is still a work-in-progress for me.  Perhaps with a little more practice and YouTube Video watching I can become a Contour Master.  With the ISH kit I felt like the colors blended well and I was able to have fun with the kit and work a little cheek bone magic.


Practice Makes Perfect

Love the colors and I am grateful for a reason to get a little extra dolled up every now and then.


Argan & Hemp Oil + Shaving Lotion

Pampering myself is definitely the last on my list of to-dos as a busy mom of two.  I loved the extra shine the Argan Oil provided and the Shaving Lotion kept up to it’s end of the bargain when they claimed that, “This little bottle is about to shave your life.” A brand with a sense of humor-who isn’t wrong.  LOVE.


Keratin Gloves & Socks

My hands and feet are about to get a whole lots softer!  Can’t wait to try this out this weekend!


Tag Necklace

The Tag Necklace by Jook & Nona is an elegant find in the FabFitFun Spring Box.  My design says- dream – and goodness is this the year for dreaming-dreaming about the future.


I have received plenty of compliments on my new piece of jewelry and love how it is a sweet reminder every day to keep dreaming.

A little about FabFitFun

  • FabFitFun is a subscription box with full-size fashion, beauty, fitness and lifestyle products.
  • The box comes out once each season

  • It retails for $49.99 but always has a value over $200

  • You can subscribe at

  • Use my coupon code for $10 off your first box

COUPON CODE: holly20

I loved getting a box FULL of happy mail delivered to me and definitely would love to continue the service throughout the rest of the year!  Mail days are the BEST days.

What was YOUR favorite item in the FabFitFun Spring Box?

Do you treat yourself to subscription boxes?

Would love to hear from you!

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Real Food for Dogs & Delicious Family Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.  #MyNutrishDish #CollectiveBias

At the end of the day I am incredibly grateful for my four-legged companion.  Indiana is our chocolate lab, long-legged puppy who really thinks she IS a person.  She prefers human company to her canine friends and we are making sure she has a long, healthy life.  Today I am sharing a recipe I make weekly that includes the ingredients to Indiana’s dog food. Real Recipes. Real Ingredients. Real Good.


Dog Food Made with Whole Ingredients available at Target

Indiana’s favorite new food the DISH from Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe with Veggies & Fruit. Chocolate Lab Approved Meal. Now onto a dish for your favorite humans- ahem family.

Favorite Weekly Kid-Approved Meal

Chicken-Brown Rice-Vegetables 


2 Chicken Breast Filets

2 Squash

2 Large Carrots

2 Zucchini

2 Cups Brown Rice

2 Orange Bell Peppers

2 Red Bell Peppers

2 Yellow Onions

Olive Oil

Garlic Salt





Start the brown rice. I always add in butter and a pinch of garlic salt.

Prepare the chicken- I prefer stove-top, I drizzle olive oil over the chicken that I have sliced, two pinches of garlic salt.

While the chicken is cooking add in the onion, and bell peppers that you’ve cut to your desired size. Strips work best for our family.

Bake the Zucchini and Squash on 400 deg F in the oven- place on foil and salt to taste or drizzle olive oil. Check for correct tenderness- my kids prefer the veggies to be softer so it typically takes 2o minutes.


Kid-Approved Meal

Simply mix everything together on a plate and you’ve got a fabulous array of delicious AND healthy foods for your family dinner.  What’s even better is that Emma Marie get’s to feed our sweet puppy the same whole ingredients for her meals during the day.


On our trip to Target we pick up all of our needs for the week along with Indiana’s food.


Our chocolate lab is beside herself when she sees me scooping up her real dog food.  Emma Marie takes her role seriously and tends to Indy for every meal.  Indiana sits, shakes, and listens for the verbal cue from her before devouring the goodness.  Emma Marie politely pets her back and tells her how happy she is that Indiana is eating her food, “Like a good puppy.” 


Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® DISH- Dog Food

Our Indiana takes good care of us and giving her whole ingredients that will ensure she is getting tons of natural vitamins and minerals is a good place to start.


As I set in for the night I sit here and am completely grateful for this kind heart that night after night makes sure I’m not alone.  Dogs do truly know when you need them the most and her presence in the quiet evening hours helps more than she’ll ever know.

Check out the great coupon offer and find out where to pick up a pack of food for your four-legged best friend below. Remember to gradually introduce the food by incorporating it into your current dog food over the course of 7-10 days. Slowly replace your dog’s current food with DISH until it’s completely switched over.

Make the switch with a money saving coupon, available for a limited time: HERE

Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® DISH is sold at a variety of retailers in store and online. Discover a location near you by visiting the store locator: HERE 

Rachael’s personal proceeds go to Rachael’s Rescue, which was created to help shelter pets in need. To date, she has donated over $10MM. This money has gone toward food, medical supplies and treatments for these unfortunate animals.

What is one dinner that your family ALWAYS eats?

I would love to find a couple new recipes to add to our current rotation so please SHARE below.

You can follow along with me on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

What’s in my Purse? Food Allergy Edition

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GIVEEXTRAGETEXTRA #Walmart #CollectiveBias

As a food allergy parent you must ALWAYS be prepared.  Forgetting the Epi-Pens just one time can mean the difference between life and death-many people do not have enough time to wait for emergency crews to respond before it’s too late.  Today I am sharing with you what I always have with me and what helps us stay safe.


What’s in my purse? Food Allergy Edition



  • Double Epi-Pen Pack
  • Chew-able Benedryl Pack
  • Disposable Bags- there are MANY foods that trigger intense stomach pain and throw-up within minutes of ingesting.  These come in hand with all other matters of problems too.
  • Extra® Gum Spearmint– in the NEW 35 Count Packs!
  • Hair Clip
  • Lip Color


  • Wallet-it can fit all necessary medication.
  • Sunglasses- we live in Arizona.
  • Extra® Gum Polar Ice®
  • Handmade Bracelet
  • Business Cards


The new Extra® 35-stick pack of Extra® Gum Polar Ice®.

My Car Kit contains baby wipes, food allergy wet wipes, and changes of clothes.  Accidents happen and cross contamination is a real threat in our daily life.  I am thankful that at four he knows what the warning signs are for when he is about to puke BUT he just gets really upset when he starts to go into a full allergy-attack.  I mean honestly people of ALL ages get upset and frightened when they start to go anaphylactic . Thankful that at his school there is a team of people keeping him safe and educating fellow teachers and substitutes of the procedures that he requires just to survive.


On our trip to Walmart last week I was able to grab two more packs in the checkout line.  Super easy to find and I love that they fit in my purse or wallet.  Both Extra® Gum Polar Ice® and Extra® Gum Spearmint are available in the larger packs that are packaged in durable, recycled packaging.  Win-Win. Give Extra, Get Extra.


Extra® Gum Spearmint

I tend to have HORRIBLE breath when I am in new situations and am always carrying a pack of Extra® Gum Spearmint.  I am definitely happy that they now come in 35 stick packs!  WOOHOO.  It truly is the little things.  Be grateful that I have this with me-if we ever have the pleasure of meeting in real life.  I kid.  But really.

What is ONE necessity that you always travel with?

What is your favorite flavor of gum?

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Refreshing Raspberry Lemonade Mocktail Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #NewWayToSparkle #CollectiveBias

As the temperature heats up here in the desert I find making a refreshing mocktail completely necessary.  The Raspberry Lemonade Mocktail is easy to make and even easier to customize to taste.  Check out this fabulous recipe and grab the ingredients the next time you’re out shopping. Easy, DIY Mocktail for the win!


Raspberry Lemonade Mocktail Recipe


-Dasani Sparkling Raspberry Lemonade

-Dasani Sparkling Lemon

-Fresh Lemons

-Fabulous Glass (or to-go cup)


Dasani is relaunching favorite flavors in NEW Dasani Sparkling sleek cans at Target. They are definitely thinking about how to keep your drink fizzing… the longer AND sleeker cans kept my drink from going flat even after stopping to play Hot Lava Monster three times.  A mom’s job is never done.  Reminds me of how certain glasses are shaped the EXACT same way to keep the fizz- smart move.

I grabbed a case of Dasani Sparkling Raspberry Lemonade and Dasani Sparkling Lemon while on our weekly trip to Target. Special introductory price of 3 for $9! You can bet that the GORGEOUS glass featured here is from the Dollar Spot at Target.  Such a win to be able to pick up literally- everything while running errands at one store.


Target for the Win!


Make sure you grab BOTH flavors of Dasani Sparkling for this fabulous recipe.


-Cut up one lemon- easy and small wedges are your friends.

-Juice one lemon- that’s what I call it.  Grind that baby to pulp, literally.  Then remove the seeds and throw away the peel.

-Pour the juice and extra bits into a small glass-I keep the extra in the fridge to easily make a mocktail in a pinch.


-Grab a glass. Add ice-I prefer more ice as it is in the 90s here.

-Add 2 parts Dasani Sparkling Raspberry Lemonade.

-Add 1 part Dasani Sparkling Lemon.

-2 Dashes of Fresh Squeezed (pressed) Lemon Juice.

-Add Wedges for flair-and to help with refill taste.


Refreshing Raspberry Lemonade Mocktail Recipe

Seriously, with the fresh lemon juice being stored in the fridge it is dangerously easy to make another Raspberry Lemonade Mocktail.  Not like that is a problem at all.  Easy AND delicious.


After spending hours at our local Air Force Base taking in the sights, sounds, and supporting our local military you can bet I made one of these bad boys as soon as we made it home.  Refreshing and definitely a healthier option that is exactly what I look forward to in the afternoon. The new Dasani Sparkling flavors help make every moment sparkle just a bit more.  And goodness that is all you can ask for.

Find more easy to make recipes that are refreshing and fun to make by visiting this link: NewWayToSparkle.

What is your favorite afternoon drink?

Mocktail recipe?

Would love to find another winning combination before triple digits hit here!

You can follow along with me on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

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