my world.

I want to say I can’t believe it’s already February but I honestly feel like the Holidays were so long ago. For once, I don’t feel like time is flying. Here is a roundup of what I’ve been obsessing over lately.

music:

 

 

beauty:

MUFE stick foundation:

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I’ve been using this foundation for the past few weeks now and have been loving it how easily it blends and how flawless the coverage is. I also like that the coverage isn’t too matte- I don’t like a very matte look during the winter months. This was a great find and I’m not sure what took me so long to try it.

too faced semi sweet chocolate bar:

unnamedI’ve had this eye shadow palette for a while, but I recently started using it more consistently. I love how many looks I can achieve with this, and it’s so fun to play with. It makes getting ready in the mornings more fun! See my review here. 

Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess Powder Bronzer:

This is my go to bronzer- I use it every single day to give my face some warmth. I love the finish it gives- it never looks ashy and is pretty fool proof. I like to use a big fluffy brush or the brush it comes with.

fashion:

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Steve Madden studded buckle booties- I get compliments every time I wear these booties. They’re comfortable enough to wear all day and have a bit of edge with the buckles. I got them in the Fall from the Steve Madden store and wasn’t able to find the exact pair I have, but these are similar.

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ZARA check maxi coat: This is my new favorite coat- warm, long and trendy. I can wear this with leggings and a sweatshirt and still look stylish:)

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reading:

the night circusThis book was such a joy to read. It was a treat for the senses. I felt like I could smell the foods of the circus, see the elaborate tents, and feel the magic of the circus. Reading this book is like entering a fantastic world- a true escape. This book makes you wonder what is real and what is magic? What makes something real and what makes it a dream world? Highly recommend this one- a disclaimer though is that the plot is slow moving but worth your patience at the beginning of the story.

food:

I recently started making my own trail mix using just three ingredients in equal parts- almonds, dried cranberries, and dark chocolate chips. It is so delicious and easy to put together. I like to have it in the afternoons at work as a pick me up.

What have you been loving lately?

Sincerely,

Surleen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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sephora haul

I decided to start off the the New Year with quite a few beauty buys that I’ve been loving! I am so excited to recommend every one of these products that I’ve recently purchased. Many of these were on a my wish list for a while so I’m happy to now say they are on my makeup dresser!

Here’s what I recently purchased and have been loving. I am only including new products (new to me) in this haul, not ones that I repurchased.

Farmacy Honey Potion Renewing Antioxidant Hydration Mask:

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This is the only face mask I’ve been using on my dry winter skin, and I have to say I love it. I enjoy the subtle warming sensation on my face and how it transforms into a luxurious thick cream, leaving my skin hydrated and supple.

CLINIQUE Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector & Optimizer

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I am really happy with this serum so far- I’ve been using ir every night for a little less than 4 weeks now and I’ve already begun to notice that my post acne marks are lighter than they were before and that overall my skin looks brighter and healthier. The texture of this serum is great- it applies like satin and leaves my skin velvety smooth.

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Lip Therapy:

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I like to use this lip balm at night or in the mornings before applying my makeup. I don’t think it does anything amazing to my lips other than keep them hydrated and soft. I like that it has no scent or color.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Fineliner Ultra-Skinny Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner Blacquer:

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I think this one of the products I am most excited about. I was on the hunt for an eye liner for such a long time. I am not great at applying eye liner and wanted something thin so I could be more precise with it. This is great! I love not only how thin it is, but also that it stays put all day. Do you have a hard time applying eye liner? What is your favorite eye liner?

belif Peat Miracle Revital Eye Cream:

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I recently got myself a sample of this eye cream, after hearing many wonderful reviews. Having used up my sample, I was very impressed with the texture of this cream. I love the thickness of it and how well it absorbs into my eye area. I’ve been using it in the mornings before applying makeup and at night. I have now been using the full size for around 2 weeks- so in total I’ve been using this day and night for a month and wow I love it! I find the scent to be very plesant.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Liquid Lip Crème Slow Burn 458:

I am so obsessed with the formula of this lip cream!! It’s the perfect marriage between a liquid lipstick and a lipgloss. It’s creamy, hydrating, not overly pigmented and the shade is just gorgeous! I think I have to pick up some more shades in the range.

MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultra HD Invisible Cover Stick Foundation 173 = Y445:

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I am not a huge fan of the MUFE Ultra HD foundation, but this stick version of the foundation is a total game changer for me. Fist of all, the color is beyond perfect for my skin tone. Recently I have been struggling to find the right shade and undertone in my foundations. Aside from the shade choice, this foundation stick applies like a dream- it’s super super easy to blend and looks like my skin but better! I think this is my new holy grail foundation. I like to blend it out with a makeup brush rather than a beauty sponge. Highly recommend! This is so lightweight and travel friendly as well.

Anastasia Beverly Hills lipglosses in Bordeaux, Metallic Rose and Vintage –

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I am not a liquid lipstick girl. I just don’t like the way they look on me- I love the shine of a lip gloss but the pigmentation of a lipstick. These lipglosses are the best of both worlds. They’re not super sticky, but have just the right amount of shine and pigment. The best part though? They smell like vanilla cupcakes:)

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I keep the vintage shade on my desk at work since it looks great on top of any lip color I have on.

What have you gotten from Sephora recently??

Sincerely, 

Surleen 

 

baked eggplant parmesan

I’ve grown to like eggplant over the years- maybe it’s being married to an eggplant lover. It’s all about the texture for me, which actually might not be true since I love it mushy in the form of bhartha but can’t stand baba ganoush– you figure it out.

I have been using this recipe for so long now that I don’t think I can go back to the traditional method of frying the eggplant ever again. This is one of my husband’s favorite things that I make and I think that makes it even more special.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 medium eggplants, sliced into 1/2-inch thick rounds
  • salt
  • 1 1/2 cups Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 eggs (or 1 egg + 2 egg whites)
  • cooking spray or olive oil
  • 1 (25 ounce) jar of tomatoe sauce (homemade or store bought)
  • 2 cups grated Mozzarella cheese
  • 2/3 cup finely-grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup  fresh basil (chopped or torn)

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 425°F.  Prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper, and set aside.

In a shallow bowl, whisk together Panko breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning and 1 teaspoon salt until combined.  In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs until smooth.  Dip an eggplant round on both sides in the whisked egg mixture, then immediately dip it in the breadcrumb mixture until the eggplant is completely coated, then set on a parchment-covered baking sheet.  Repeat with the remaining eggplant rounds until they are all evenly spaced on the baking sheets.  Bake for 20 minutes, flipping once halfway through, until the breadcrumbs are toasted and slightly golden.  Remove from the oven and set aside.

Spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce evenly over the bottom of an 11 x 8-inch baking dish.  Place half of the eggplant in an even layer along the bottom of the baking dish.  Spread an additional 1 cup of tomato sauce evenly over the eggplant.  Then sprinkle 1 cup Mozzarella cheese evenly over the sauce, followed by 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, followed by 1/4 cup of the fresh basil.  Repeat with another layer of the remaining eggplant, then tomato sauce, then Mozzarella, then Parmesan cheese.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cheese is melted and starts to turn slightly golden around the edges, and the sauce is bubbly.  Remove and sprinkle with the remaining basil.  Serve immediately.

I like having this with spaghetti and my husband’s homemade cheesy garlic bread.  Yes, he makes his own bread- from scratch- and it’s divine.

 

Sincerely, 

Surleen 

 

 

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