10 Under $10 - No 5 www.britonalo.com

10 Under $10 / No. 5

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10 Under $10 - No 5 www.britonalo.com

makeup brushes / smoothing cream / nail polish / scarf / lash serum / brush egg / earrings / lip balm / hair color / jeans

A WORD OF CAUTION: jump on these great deals while you can, items sell out quickly, especially the ones that are majorly ON SALE!! All items were $10 or less at the time of posting, prices may change at any time!

10 Under $10

It’s been a long time since my last post so I wanted to kick things off again with another 10 Under $10 post! These deals were so fun to find and I have my eye on several of these products! Jump on the nail polish because it’s an awesome deal! And score a pair of the J Brand jeans FAST – these WILL NOT LAST!


Find all my 10 Under $10 finds here!

10 Under $10 / No. 4

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10 Under $10 - No. 4 www.britonalo.com

triangle earrings / hair crayons / black dress / leopard tote / nail polish / pink dress / espadrilles / crochet dress / floppy hat / shorts

A WORD OF CAUTION: jump on these great deals while you can, items sell out quickly, especially the ones that are majorly ON SALE!! All items were $10 or less at the time of posting, prices may change at any time!

10 Under $10

There are some awesome summer deals today! I love the idea behind the Free People hair crayons – they wash out with shampoo and only last a few days. Perfect for vacation or to see if you like the color before committing to something more permanent. Another fave of mine is the leopard tote. We are always headed somewhere so I like to keep totes like this in the car and near the front door because I never know when I’m going to need to haul a bunch of stuff with us!

I hope you’re having a great summer and that some of these great deals will make it into your life :)

Find all my 10 Under $10 finds here! And Spring/Summer trends for less here!

Mascara Hack

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Mascara Hack www.britonalo.com

Today I’m sharing one of my favorite makeup secrets – my mascara hack!

About a year ago I switched mascaras. I had been using Maybelline Great Lashfor years. Like 18 YEARS. I liked the consistency, it stayed on with minimal smudging, and it was cheap and easy to pick up. The reason I switched is because I attended a favorite things party and the gift I got was Revlon Grow Luscious Mascara. I tried it out and I have continued buying it ever since. It is supposed to help you get longer, more lush lashes. It works for me. I really like the consistency. It is drier than Great Lash and I feel like that helps it look thicker at the base of my lashes. The brush is also really thick and tightly bound which helps fan my lashes out more than Great Lash ever did. The price is a bit more but it isn’t too high.

And now for the hack! I add a drop of lavender essential oil to my Grow Luscious and I have noticed that my lashes are naturally longer and thicker than they used to be. It isn’t a crazy difference that is super noticeable but I do see it as I’m getting ready for the day. I wore the mascara without the added lavender for several months but really noticed the difference in my lashes after months of wearing it with the lavender.

So, why lavender? Lavender essential oil is assumed to aid in hair growth and to have antibacterial properties. Eye makeup can harbor lots of germs because of the mucous membrane (eyelids) it comes into contact with. This is why you should not share your eye makeup or applicators with others! Anyway, the lavender oil helps keep those germs in check. Another benefit of the oil is that it helps keep the mascara from getting too thick as it gets older and has been exposed to air time and time again.

This mascara hack is so simple. Here is all you need:

1 tube Revlon Grow Luscious Mascara

1 drop Lavender Essential Oil*

Open the mascara, carefully drop 1 drop of essential oil into the tube and replace the lid.

See? Easy!

*Make sure to buy a high quality, 100% therapeutic-grade essential oil. Do not use a fragrance oil used in soap or candle making.

**I am not qualified to give advice about essential oils, first aid for misuse of essential oils, etc. I’m just sharing something that has worked for me. Follow the advice here at your own risk – essential oils should not be applied to the eye without the supervision of someone who had been trained to do so.

Do you have a great makeup hack or a favorite drugstore beauty product? Share in the comments!

Printable May 2015 Calendar

May 2015 Calendar www.britonalo.com

Today I have a simple and modern printable May 2015 Calendar to share! Some ways you can use this printable:

- Save it as your computer’s wallpaper
- Print and hang it on your wall
- Print it as a half sheet, and put it in your journal or planner

Weekends are highlighted in Lime while major holidays (US) are highlighted in Kelley Green. The month and year are not to be missed and there is space included for making notes.

Do you use a hard copy calendar anymore or do you rely on something online? Personally, I like both. I love the convenience of using Google Calendar. I use an app called CalenMob that syncs to my laptop’s Google Calendar so I always have all my appointments available whether I’m on my computer or my phone.

But, I also love a real calendar because I like to use them as a sort of family journal. Dates and outings we went on, vacations we took, guest we had in our home, general day-to-day items, etc. It’s fun to look back at our old calendar pages and see how we lived even just a few short years ago!

May 2015 Calendar www.britonalo.com

Click HERE to print or download

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water

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Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

A few years ago Luke and I went to a restaurant in Salt Lake called Frida Bistro. I wrote a post about it here.

While the food didn’t impress us much, the drinks and dessert were amazing! I had a pineapple jalepeno limeade that still haunts me.

I have been trying to drink more water in recent months and have been playing around with infusing it with different fruit combos. Blackberry Lemon is a really great one, find it here. Grapefruit Rosemary is NOT. So bitter!

Well, I wanted to try something inspired by my drink at Frida Bistro so I came up with this pineapple jalepeno lemon infused water. I’m so happy with how it turned out – sweet and spicy! You can adjust the heat by adding less or more jalepeno. I also love this water without the lemon. I haven’t tried it with other citrus fruits but I’m sure they would sub in just fine, especially lime.

And before I get to the recipe, did you know jalepenos are LOADED with vitamins (C, K, E, most of the B complex), minerals (potassium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, manganese), and antioxidants? This water is a great way to get the benefits without chomping down on the raw pepper! Guess what, pineapple is packed with goodness, too! Not only is it the only natural source of an enzyme called bromelain, it is also packed with vitamins and minerals (C, copper, thiamine, B-1, B-6, magnesium, folate, riboflavin, niacin, iron). So, there you go – this water is AWESOME!

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water www.britonalo.com

Pineapple Jalepeno Lemon Infused Water

1/8 pineapple, cut into tidbits
1/4-1/2 lemon, washed and sliced (also great without it)
jalepeno, washed and cut into 4 thin slices, membranes and seeds removed (wear gloves when cutting)

In a 32 oz. Canning Jar:
Add pineapple to the jar and muddle, then add lemon, and jalepeno. Add ice and water, screw on the lid and give it a good shake. Enjoy immediately! You can also refill your jar a few times or dilute it with more water if it’s too spicy to start.

And speaking of canning jars…click each pic for details!

Choose Water- Tips, Tricks, and Recipes to help you get the water your body NEEDS! www.britonalo.com

Better Sleep

Better Sleep www.britonalo.com

March was all about focusing on sleep for me. (See my other monthly goals here.) For YEARS I have been a night owl. Like, 2am would roll around and I would be surprised how late it was. My body just doesn’t give me the sleepy cues it should to force my buns into bed. The only problem is that I have an early alarm clock and kids that need a functional mama every morning. Now, I might be “functional” after 4 hours of sleep but I am certainly not very nice about it. I realized a couple of years ago that “functional” wasn’t going to cut it anymore and that I wanted to be more pleasant and less grumpy. So, I started changing my sleep habits. I’m still not perfect about it and now I only stay up until 2am if I have deadlines!

I wanted to spend a month focusing on my sleep just to remind myself of how important it is and keep myself on the right sleep track.

Better Sleep www.britonalo.com

Here are some tips for getting better sleep if you tend to stay up late then regret the next morning!

1. Stop looking at tv, phone, laptop, computer, etc. about 30 minutes before you plan to go to sleep. The light messes with your brain and tells your body to stay awake.

2. Go to bed a little earlier each night. If you are staying up until 2am, like I was, it will be a huge adjustment to suddenly hit the hay at 10pm.

3. Don’t nap. For me, a nap always messes up my sleep schedule. If I accidentally crash on the couch on a Sunday afternoon, there is NO WAY I will be able to fall asleep before midnight. I try to avoid naps, at all costs!

4. Do something relaxing. If you are used to watching tv until bedtime, try taking a lavender bath instead. You can also try meditating, stretching, or listening to calm music.

5. Stop eating. Give your body a break from digesting. Try to stop eating several hours before bed. Brush your teeth to help keep you from midnight snacking.

6. Dim the lights. Lights tell your body it’s time to be awake. Start dimming your lights closer to bedtime to naturally tell your bod its time for some snoozing.

7. Fake it till you make it. A lot of times I don’t feel tired but I just make myself go to bed. Some nights it takes me forever to fall asleep but I know that at least my body is still getting rest and that I’m still in the process of teaching myself better sleep habits.

For me, more sleep means I am much nicer, no bags under my eyes, more energy, and mental clarity.

Check out my focus for April and follow along on Instagram! Do you have any more tips for getting better sleep?

10 Under $10 / No. 3

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10 Under $10 - No. 3 www.britonalo.com

swim top / white dress / lipstick / blue dress / backpack / sun hat / sandal / tee / sport bra / nail polish

10 Under $10

I am over this East Coast winter. OVER IT. I can’t wait for the care-free days of summer where you just throw on shorts, a tee, and sandals and it’s just easy. I’m sure I’ll be changing my story when the humidity is 95% in a few months but right now, when it’s 40 degrees and snowing all the time, I want sunshine and pedicures. I want to smell like sunscreen + chlorine.

For this roundup I found some great deals on lots of summery items- I especially love that ASOS dress to throw on over a bathing suit and the Victoria’s Secret sport bra is a GREAT deal. Not that I actually work out, but I might, if I weren’t drinking gallons of hot cocoa trying to keep my core body temperature in the safe zone. Anyway, shop away and get a great start on your summer wardrobe!

A word of caution: jump on these great deals while you can, items sell out quickly, especially the ones that are majorly ON SALE!! All items were $10 or less at the time of posting, prices may change at any time!

Find all my 10 Under $10 finds here!

To Read / No. 1

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10 To Read / No. 1 - A list of book suggestions from www.britonalo.com

I decided to spend February focusing on reading more books. (You can find my January focus here.) Anyway, last month didn’t go exactly as I had envisioned. February was a stressful month for me and I learned that when I have high anxiety I do not want to read a novel. I did make two major changes in my reading habits, though.

1. I read to my kids almost every time they asked. It’s really easy to find an excuse not to read to them so I made sure that I put other things on the back burner more so we could snuggle and read together. I read One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish about a billion times. I also had lengthy conversations about what would happen if my kids brought home a Clark from the park.

2. I looked up a lot of articles and talks about the thing that was/is making me feel anxious. I can’t fix it but I know more about how to deal with it in the future. Not very exciting for you but helpful for me.

To Read / No. 1 www.britonalo.com

I asked for book suggestions on Instagram a few weeks ago and I want to share them here. I’ve read a few of them and have some of the others on my To Read list!

The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls

Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Before Happiness: The 5 Hidden Keys to Achieving Success, Spreading Happiness, and Sustaining Positive Change by Shawn Achor

Hands Free Mama: A Guide to Putting Down the Phone, Burning the To-Do List, and Letting Go of Perfection to Grasp What Really Matters! by Rachel Macy Stafford

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand

Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story by Benjamin Carson

The End of Reason: A Response to the New Atheists by Ravi Zacharias

All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel by Anthony Doerr

Die Empty: Unleash Your Best Work Every Day by Todd Henry

Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua

Have you read any of these? What would you add to the list?

Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Looks for Less

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Spring 2015- Ready-to-Wear Looks for Less www.britonalo.comOriginal Photo: Kim Weston Arnold / Indigitalimages.com

Here are some of my favorite outfits from the shows to get you thinking about what to wear as the weather warms up! Below these looks are some Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Looks for Less.

Altuzarra / see the show here

I love the feminine fabrics and colors + strongly tailored pieces in this collection. Altuzarra Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Gingham www.britonalo.comPhoto: Kim Weston Arnold / Indigitalimages.com

Altuzarra Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Gingham www.britonalo.comPhoto: Kim Weston Arnold / Indigitalimages.com

Altuzarra Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Stripes www.britonalo.comPhoto: Kim Weston Arnold / Indigitalimages.com

Bottega Veneta / see the show here

Raw edges and sparkly details add the perfect amount of edge and glam to an otherwise soft and comfortable collection. Bottega Veneta Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Neutrals www.britonalo.comPhoto: Yannis Vlamos / Indigitalimages.com

Bottega Veneta Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Neutrals www.britonalo.comPhoto: Yannis Vlamos / Indigitalimages.com

Bottega Veneta Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Gingham www.britonalo.comPhoto: Yannis Vlamos / Indigitalimages.com

Erdem / see the show here

I really love the Victorian Greenhouse inspiration of this collection. It’s architectural and organic in a really feminine and beautiful way.

Erdem Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Lace Structure www.britonalo.comPhoto: Yanni Vlamos / Indigitalimages.com

Valentino / see the show here

A wearable collection with great basic pieces and feminine draping.

Valentino Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Lace Structure www.britonalo.comPhoto: Marcus Tondo / Indigitalimages.com

My favorite spring show as a whole is Sonia Rykiel. The entire collection is very wearable and the hair and makeup is super pretty. Have a look!

Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear Looks for Less

Instead of recreating each outfit I found lots of pieces in the trends for spring. All items are less than $125 (subject to change or sell out without notice!) so you can get the look without busting your budget!

Gingham

Stripes

Neutrals

Lace

Dedicated to Don Buthod, my high school French teacher. He let me and a friend make a faux website about the history of French fashion for our end of semester project. 15 years later, I’ve not gotten over it.

Alt Summit 2015

Alt Summit 2015 www.britonalo.comphoto by Brooke Dennis Scarf by K Crochets

I had the chance to attend Alt Summit 2015 last week and wanted to give you a recap!

Alt has a reputation for being one of the best conferences for bloggers and businesses. It is a luxury conference and it draws in great speakers, teachers, and sponsors.

The Fashion
Alt Summit 2015 www.britonalo.comphoto by Brooke Dennis

You know how sometimes you wish you could dress like a toddler? No rules, mixing patterns and textures? Loud, fancy, over-the-top, you name it? Anything goes at Alt. Some major trends I saw:

Sparkles, Stripes, Leather, Polka Dots, Unique Glasses, Colorful Hair

The nice thing about Alt is that you can dress however you feel comfortable. There are fashion bloggers that will have every outfit styled perfectly, hairstylists that will have gorgeous braids and curls, people who think outside the box of fashion, people who are low-key, and people who only shop thrift and vintage.

The Parties
Alt Summit 2015 www.britonalo.comphoto by Brooke Dennis

We had sponsored dinners on Wednesday night across Salt Lake. I attended a dinner with Airbnb at an old Victorian home. Airbnb flew in their chef from HQ and we spent the evening getting to know each other better over some great dishes.

Dinner with @Airbnb tonight!! #altsummit

A photo posted by Briton Alo (@britonalo) on

On Thursday we had a Downtown Abbey inspired evening. The idea was to infuse your look with 1920′s motifs but to not dress in costume.

Friday was a night full of mini parties. We took over part of the third floor and each room had a different theme. From Pop Alt to Tokyo Dreams, there was never a dull moment!

Mini. Party. Time. #buzzwithhive #altsummit

A photo posted by Rad Mom Cool Kid (@radmomcoolkid) on

The Learning
Alt Summit 2015 www.britonalo.comphoto by Justin Hackworth

Alt has a great assortment of keynote speakers, panels, classes, roundtable discussions, design camps, and hallway experts to learn from. I missed the opening keynote this year thanks to a wicked combo of little sleep, jet lag, and anti-nausea meds from the flight. I really enjoyed the classes I attended. There were classes and workshops on podcasts, instagram, pinterest, tribes, monetizing, legal questions, photo styling, and plugins, to name a few!

The Downs
Alt Summit 2015 www.britonalo.comphoto by Justin Hackworth

Alt can be intimidating and intense, especially for introverts. I think a lot of bloggers are introverts- that’s why we blog! It’s easier on us to reach out to people without actually being in their presence. Large groups and lots of interaction is draining for introverts so Alt can be exhausting for us. I try to sneak off to a quiet corner or the bathroom when I’m feeling like I can’t meet one more new person!

Another thing that exhausts me is the information overload. The schedule is PACKED full of amazing speakers and classes and I take full advantage of it. One thing that helps me is to take great notes and just let my brain relax, knowing I got it all down in my notebook to look at later.

The last thing that is tough about Alt is that it can be hard on your confidence. At Alt you are selling your personal brand to a very visual market. We are all bloggers and business owners in the age of Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook. We know the power of good design and Alt is a chance to sell our sites wrapped up in the pretty package of good hair, makeup, outfits, and personality. That said, sometimes you get there and feel like you don’t quite measure up. There are people there who are crazy successful. They hustle really hard and have such a clear vision of where they want their business to go. There are people wearing couture outfits and expensive makeup.

I don’t want to sell Alt as a shallow place for shallow people who only care about looks. What I’m saying is that it is a conference full of people who design and create beautiful things and your personal design/style is part of the whole package you are bringing to the table. And sometimes you feel small and lost in the middle of a lot of greatness.

The Ups
Alt Summit 2015 www.britonalo.comphoto by Justin Hackworth

My favorite thing I heard at Alt was from Corinne Stokoe of Mint Arrow. She mentioned that she struggled at a previous Alt because it seemed like everyone around her was moving forward and knew where they were going and she felt a little stuck. She said, “Don’t let Alt give you an identity crisis!” I felt the identity crisis at my first Alt and I was feeling it at this one. I was pretty sure it was just me, that everyone around me was blessed with that clear vision and endless energy to move forward. Hearing her say that she had felt the same way gave me the boost I needed.

There are some amazing people who attend Alt. As I follow them on their social channels and see what they are up to I am so inspired and impressed! They do great things and are so supportive of others. There is a tribe mentality that is really strong among the attendees and I love witnessing it and being sucked up into it.

Be sure to also read my Alt Survival Guide over on Rad Mom Cool Kid!

Check out OneDrive for more photos from Alt or search #AltSummit on Instagram!