Sunday, April 12, 2015

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Sugar and Spice Organics Giveaway

Hey everyone!

I'm excited to share this post featuring a new sponsor: Sugar and Spice Organics

"Sugar & Spice Organics is an all-natural skin care company founded on the idea of creating organic, non-GMO, additive & preservative free, skin care products at a reasonable price. Specializing in small batch, handcrafted products for face and body, using limited and valuable ingredients which have been sourced from suppliers who specialize in ethical sourcing & high quality. If you pay attention to what you put IN your body, you should pay attention to what you put ON your body too!"
I had the opportunity to review a fun collection of Sugar and Spice Organics products. 
Here is what I received!

My order arrived in a bubble wrap envelope. Inside, my products were inside a handstamped brown paper bag with a business card and note. The 3 sugar scrubs and 1 face mask that I received were all the same size (4 ounce jars) with logo stickers on the front.

Let's start with how I liked the sugar scrubs. Sugar and Spice Organics offers a wide array or scrubs that are gritty hydrating exfoliants. Each jar was approximately 4 ounces full-- made in small and fresh batches with love. Here is my organic trio (you can buy any 3 scrubs for $19.50) that were all generous in different ways! Here's the breakdown:

1. Green-Tea Mint Body Scrub ($7.50) (pictured on the left of line up)
This Green-Tea Mint body scrub really smells like a cup of green tea. This herbal smelling sugar scrub is nice and gritty for exfoliating. It's enriched with oils that leave your skin buttery after the sugar has dissolved. The sugar is gritty enough to help you exfoliate but still gentle against your skin.

INGREDIENTS: Organic cane sugars; Organic olive oil; Organic coconut oil; Organic tea leaves; Pure therapeutic essential oils

2. Earth Scrub ($7.50) (pictured in the middle of line line up)

The Earth Scrub is perfect for all of you coffee lovers who need a boost waking up in the morning. I don't even drink coffee but the scent is invigorating to start your day with this caffeine burst. This is different from the sugar scrubs in that the coffee grains don't dissolve against your skin but continue to exfoliate as you lather. It will leave your skin feeling baby soft after you pat it dry with a towel. 

INGREDIENTS: Organic fair trade coffee; Organic brown sugar; Organic castor oil; Organic coconut oil; Pure Therapeutic essential oils.

3. Lavender-Chamomile Scrub ($7.50) (pictured on the right of line up)

Between the 2 sugar scrubs I reviewed, I loved this Lavender-Chamomile Body Scrub. It's similar to the Green-Tea Mint Body Scrub but that kick of lavender is prevalent, soothing you through your shower. This is a wonderful way to wind down your day (especially long work days) to because it's such a relaxing scent. I love that you don't need to moisturize after using these sugar scrubs as well since the natural oils really do their job!

INGREDIENTS: Organic cane sugars, organic olive oil, organic coconut oil, organic lavender flowers, organic chamomile leaves and pure therapeutic essential oils.

Last but not least is this Spiced Honey Face Mask ($7.50)
First, let me tell you how hard it is to not eat this while you are applying it because it smells like cinnamon and honey.  I received a container that was a little over 2/3 full viscous dark chocolate-looking honey. You will receive approximately 4 ounces. :) I thought this was a really cool and innovative product because I've never heard of a honey mask! I also love cinnamon so the fact that this product literally smells like a spicy cinnamon chai latte is amazing.

INGREDIENTS: Organic raw honey; Organic ceylon cinnamon; Organic nutmeg; Organic orange peel
The directions aren't on the jar itself but it is on the listing to apply a thin layer and leave it on for 20-30 minutes. I may have put a little bit more than needed in my sample photo above but you get the idea! The honey masks the mask stick to your face and easy to spread. It smells really really yummy. It will stay the same consistency on your face as it sits and it is very easy to wash off. I experienced a little bit of a sting after the mask would be fully washed off but after a few minutes it immediately goes away. Your face will feel so soft after!

I am very pleased with Sugar and Spice Organics' products. They carry unique combinations of natural skin remedies formulated into masks and sugar scrubs that are enriching, nourishing, and fragrant. The prices are very reasonable and these small batches of handmade love really shine among my plentiful skincare products. They're great for all age groups and could be easily shared within a versatile household's shower. 

Let's move onto a little interview and shop feature for Sugar and Spice Organics:
Cinnamon Sugar Scrub $7.50
1. How did your shop get started? 

I’ve always had a passion for health and wellness, which has only grown over time. I try to avoid additives, GMOs, and unpronounceable ingredients in everything I consume – and I quickly came to the realization that the “beneficial” skin care products out there are actually riddled with toxic chemicals. Knowing that our skin absorbs about 60% of what it comes into contact with (YIKES!) coupled with a family history of skin cancer lead me to wonder how the harsh chemicals in these "name brand" products were REALLY affecting our bodies and overall health. It’s true that we are what we eat, and I certainly didn’t want to be exposing the largest organ in my body to toxins. I started experimenting with oil cleansing, natural face masks and natural face & body scrubs for myself, family and friends; which lead to me to open our little shop!

Tantalizing Peppermint-Coffee Body Scrub!
Peppermint Coffee Body Scrub $7.75
2. What is your favorite product to design/make? 

 Honestly, I love coming up with new combinations. Whether it's a new scrub or mask that I'm trying out for my household/friends/family, or if it's a custom order for an individual client/favors for an event/etc. There's something about the creative process that is relaxing for me. 

Discounted ORGANIC trio! Buy 3 and SAVE!
Organic Trio $19.50
3. What is the most challenging part of your line of work? 

Probably getting ourselves known since we’re a new small business, while staying true to our brand. We’ve had more of a vegan impact that I expected (since currently 5 out of 7 of our products are vegan) so that opened up some new avenues, buuuut I love the skin benefits of honey so we’re definitely not a “strictly” vegan brand. ;) I’ve really never thought of myself as a “marketer”, so it's been interesting to navigate and figure out a “target audience”.

Now for our international giveaway. One lucky winner will win a $20 gift card to Sugar and Spice Organics. Get your shop on pronto with the coupon code: CTNLOVE - 10% off

Connect with Sugar and Spice Organics:
Instagram: @sugarandspiceorganics https://instagram.com/sugarandspiceorganics 
Facebook: Sugar & Spice Organics https://www.facebook.com/SugarSpiceOrganics 
WordPress: Sugar & Spice Organics https://SugarAndSpiceOrganics.wordpress.com

P.S. Be sure to enter my giveaway here!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Trinkets by Dana April Sale/Giveaway

Hey guys!!

I have exciting news. I heard from back from all of my graduate programs and I have decided where I want to go. But I'm going to have a huge sale at trinkets to help me condense my packing.

Everything at trinkets will be buy 1, get 1 free within the same shop section and price range. So if you buy a pair of earrings, the next pair you choose (within $3 price difference) will be free.

Please support and help me get some art to some new lovely homes!

To help promote this sale, I am also running a giveaway. Every prize is international and easy to enter. Join in on the fun and be sure to share this sale/giveaway with your friends!

Good Luck!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Your OTCAS Questions Answered!

Hey everyone!

As you know, I've been working hard on applying to MSOT programs for Occupational Therapy. This post will be an informative Q&A for other students who are on the same track as me currently or in the future. I ran across some ambiguities so I can clarify them all now!

Before I start writing, I just want to express how extensive this application is. Do not plan on doing it in one session. Start at least a month in advance so that you can work on chunks of it from time to time--especially if you are in school or working. You need to type in your entire academic transcript one class and grade at a time from every school you have attended. It is tedious and time consuming so be warned. Don't procrastinate!

1. OTCAS requires a cover letter that you can print through your account to be sent with every school transcript you send to them. You must order your transcript in person and ask for your form to be included in the envelope or email a scanned form to your transcript office if they allow it. 
This allows OTCAS to organize and file your transcript faster. 

P.S. I sent one without a cover letter accidentally and then a second one with a cover letter. Both arrived to OTCAS but that doesn't mean it will necessarily happen to you. Please check your transcript status!

2. Your personal statement should be "limited to 1 page (approximately 7,500 characters)".
This is ambiguous because 1 page on word is about 2,000 characters but 4 pages on word is about 6,500 characters. So what do they want? One page or under 7,500 characters?

I believe that they offered 7,500 characters for a reason but it doesn't mean you need to "over write" an essay. Just make sure that you answer their questions in a unique and personalized way. One page in my opinion is a tad short to answer it all thoroughly but I'm not saying it's impossible. 

3. You are required to write in the amount of hours you spent on in your extracurricular and shadowing activities. Sometimes, the estimated hours makes no sense to fill in but you are asked to estimate as best as possible. For example, I have childcare experience from the past 6 years but no hourly count on it. I estimated it by how often I usually work and multiplied that by my average work shift. Then, I multiplied this number by the number of years I was working to get an estimate. 

4. Most programs will have a supplementary application for you to complete alongside the OTCAS application. From my experience, they are not very long and just require some general information on you along with a supplemental fee. Some programs will not ask of anything from you but the OTCAS application.

5. Make sure you send transcripts to the school itself if they request them. Even though they will receive it through OTCAS, most of the programs wanted me to send them transcripts from every school I attended directly to them. Make a little excel spreadsheet or write down when and where you sent out what to in order to keep things organized! 

6. Most students are taking prerequisite classes while applying or waiting on grades during the application cycle. OTCAS will offer a one time academic update in order for you to update any new grades into the designated section. This means that you can put in "Hey I'm taking this class right now and have no grade for it yet" and send it to a school. Later on, the OTCAS update will forward all new grades to the programs you submitted to already.

7. OTCAS has steps towards verifying your application, Do not submit it a week before it's due because it's stated on their site that it can take up to 3 weeks to process and verify your application. The sooner, the better! :)

8. Regularly check in on your application (weekly or even bi-weekly) on verification after completion and to see if they are receiving your transcripts. This way, you will be on top of everything. 

Hope these tips help! Good luck and remember that your best is good enough!

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