The Ashley Maria Blog

Monday, February 11, 2019

Valentine's Experiences

Do you celebrate Valentine's Day with your significant other? Joe and I really aren't that into it. For the past 8 years, we've always done something low key. Our tradition is usually stay home and Joe treats me to my favorite meal- Chicken Marsala. Here are some date night ideas that are experiences instead of the usual gifts for dinner dates.

To find something closer to you.. simply type in the class 'near me' into a google search and it will find it for you!

Dinner Making Classes
Sushi Making
Escape Room
Sign Making
Wine Tasting at local winery
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Monday, February 4, 2019

Morning Skin Routine

This post is sponsored by Bioré, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

I'm sure everybody has their own routine of their own way they get ready in the morning. I typically do the same exact thing every morning, except maybe not wearing make up on weekends!

I was lucky enough growing up, I never really had breakouts. I find I may get one pimple here or there and maybe a patch of flare up, but that's it. However, since I never experience them, when I do get that pimple.. I try and get rid of it ASAP!

Thanks to Bioré for giving my the chance to try their Bioré Witch Hazel Toner this has helped to get rid of those pest breakouts!

I simply apply my Biore Witch Hazel to my face before putting on my makeup and it helps me stay fresh all day! Once it's dry then I start my makeup routine like normal. 

Not all pore strips work like Bioré® Pore Strips! Unlike other pore strips, Bioré® Witch Hazel Ultra Deep Cleansing Pore Strips use a blend of C-bond technology to safely remove dirt, oil, and blackheads. These strips work like a super magnet, locking onto and lifting out deep-down dirt, oil, and EVEN blackheads from your most clogged pores. Bioré® Deep Cleansing Pore Strips are the trusted, dermatologist-tested way to purify pores. 

Be sure to check out these Biore products at your local Wal Mart!

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Non- Cheesy Valentine's Day Outfits

Do you have a certain sweater you wear every year on Valentine's Day. I'm not a big red person, so I typically wear something pink! I hate being the cheesy holiday dresser so I like things more subtle. Here are some options if you are like me and like celebrating the holiday with a little bit of festiveness (I think I just made that word up!)
I picked up this adorable heart top at Loft this past weekend and grabbed this one as well and plan on wearing it February 14, but what is so great, I can wear it all year long. I plan on pairing it with a cardigan or blazer on top. I can either dress this up with black dress pants or down with dark skinny jeans. 
I also came upon this J Crew Sweater which gives me all the heart eyes with that leopard print! But if you aren't looking to spend a lot of a sweater another great option is this one.

If you are looking for a little more dressier, you can never go wrong with a Lilly Pulitzer top like this one. Lastly, I added to me list a good old comfy red-sih tee.

So what do you plan on wearing this Valentine's Day?

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Friday, February 1, 2019

Five on Friday

Happy finally February!  This week is dragging on real bad. Next week at this time, I will be hopefully laying on the beach with a big ole drink in my hand.  Which brings me to my five highlights of this week..

one. We had snow in the early part of this week which led to below 0 temps for the rest of the week. I checked the weather for our upcoming trip to Jamaica and it's calling for 80's all week. Super excited to get away for a few days!

two. Speaking about the snow we had, I left work early and was able to enjoy some of the snow with the boys outside. I love watching Joey have so much fun in it, even though we could only stay out max 10-20 minutes. It was just too cold.

three. Because I consider you all my friends, I will share my little secret with you all. We sold our house!! We were not planning on doing it until the spring because we thought no one would be looking in the winter. Low and behold, the right people came along and we have to move out in a month! I will be updating you all real soon about where we plan on going, tricks I've learned with moving etc. But for now, say a little prayer for us while packing and doing the moving shuffle that everything goes smoothly. I don't know how we accumulated so much 'stuff' in three and a half years in this house.

four. This is actually from last week, but it was so dang good I want to make it again this week. This is the cauliflower crust from Trader Joe's with their pizza sauce. I sliced pepperoni and mozz cheese and yummmm-o! It was so delicious.

five. By a recommendation from a friend, I purchased this book. She just said it was so good and she couldn't put it down. I didn't really get a background on it, nor did I read the description, but we have pretty much the same taste. Well you guys. It was so.dang.good. I literally couldn't put it down and read it in two nights. Yes, staying up way past my bedtime to read it. There were so many turns in the story and it was definitely not what I expected. Check out the review and description below..

Description from a review on Amazon: 

"Marco and Anne are invited to a dinner party at the home of their next door neighbors Cynthia and Graham. They get a baby sitter for their baby daughter Cora. The sitter on the day of the dinner party cancels at the last minute. Anne really did not want to go to the party so she tell Marco that she will stay home with baby Cora. Marco somehow convinces her that they can both still go to the dinner party. All they have to do is every half hour one of them will go home and check on Cora, and they will also take the baby monitor.
They stay later than Anne wanted to and when she goes to check on baby Cora the crib is empty. The police immediately suspect that one or both of them are involved in the disappearance of Cora. As they investigated they soon discover that both of them have secrets that they are not telling each other. Each time that I thought that I had figure out who took baby Cora I was wrong. Every chapter of this book brought more twists and turns. That kept me on the edge of my seat and turning the page to find out what was going to happen next. The ending is not to be missed"

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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Game Time Snacks

Is it me, or does it seem like January is lasting three months. Thankfully we are almost there and February is in site! Super Bowl is this weekend and I feel like that creeped up on me too. Maybe because this year my team is not in the Super Bowl .. but I really am not that excited to watch it. I must admit the best part about the Super Bowl (besides watching your team take it all - GO EAGLES!) is the commercials and of course the food! Today I've got a new recipe, as well as some classic to have at your game day party!

(serves 8-10)

4 lb Pork Shoulder
4 tbsp Brown sugar
2 tbsp Paprika
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Onion Powder
1 tsp Cayenne Powder
1.5 Cups Dr. Pepper


Mix together your dry ingredients. Rub them onto your pork shoulder. Place in crock pot and pour in Dr. Pepper. Cook on slow for 7-8 hours. Pull the pork apart about mid way through cooking. You can add BBQ sauce and mix into your pulled pork, or add as you would like to your meal. I chose to put mine in a bun and top with BBQ sauce.

Hope you all enjoy the game and make some delicious snacks too!

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Friday, January 25, 2019

Valentine's for Kids & Teachers | 2019

We have been super busy lately dealing with a lot of different things, which I will share with you all hopefully soon. So I want to apologize if I am a little absent on both the blog and Instagram
Anyway, I started to come up with ideas for Joey's teachers and classmates for Valentine's this year. Since this is the first year he is in a 'classroom' setting I wanted to get an early start. Here are some ideas that are so easy to make.

Now I used toys or things we had around the house, but I also linked some good finds for cheap- especially if you have a child with a bigger class!

Car | Dollar Spot (found these on Amazon)

Crayons | Crayola Factory (found these on Amazon)

Cheese Stick

So like I said before, I just grabbed these 'props' for the pictures sake, but I plan on pairing this tags with some homemade donuts from our local bakery and putting them in a cute box or bag.

Donuts | Little Bites

Hope this helps you while thinking up Valentine's for your little's! 
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Thursday, January 17, 2019

Declutter Challenge | 2019

One of my favorite things to do in the new year is get organized and start on the right track! Today I came up with a de-cluttering challenge worksheet to help you as well!

I like to think I keep up with me kitchen so I didn't include this on the list, however I did leave open spaces for you to fill in other parts of your home you want to de-clutter as well!

I am using the approach of KEEP | DONATE | SELL | THROW

Start by taking everything out of your closets, drawers, storage etc. Make these four piles.

Keep: You wear or use often. There are no holes or stains

Donate: An item that was gently used, but could be useful to someone else.

Sell: An item that may still be in packaging or have tags still on. Maybe you wore a dress once to a wedding and is still in really good condition. I use Poshmark, Mercari, and Facebook Marketplace to sell items!

Throw: Item has holes, stains, damaged or has seen better days!

Looking for more organization tips?
Linen Closet Organization
Spice Cabinet Organization
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