Ice Cream, from Rhode Island to the Rodeo!

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If you haven’t celebrated National Ice Cream Month, yet — first off that’s just cray — second, there’s no better day than today to order a cone [or 2 or 3...Hey, technically we're supposed to eat 3 meals a day, right?], because today’s National Ice Cream Day!! [Yummmmmm!]

As you may recall from a previous post, I just moved to Denver last month. Even so, I’m not proud of how few ice cream and fro-yo places I’ve hit up in my short time here. Here’s what I have done:

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Little Man’s Ice Cream (salted Oreo is SO bangin!!! But honestly, so was their oatmeal choc chip, cupcake, caramel something or another…OK, maybe I’ve been HERE at least 3 times!!!). This place is the cutest! And its location in the Highlands neighborhood of Denver is a perfect spot to go with the family after dinner, mid-shopping with friends or alone when you get a craving for sweets and sitting outside on a beautiful day.

The Daily Scoop serves up homemade custard [that in my mind tastes just like ice cream] in 2 everyday flavors, choc and van, as well as a 3rd daily flavor. The day I went, they had van choc chip as their ‘daily scoop’ and although I wished I’d come on a day when the 3rd option was a little more… umm… exciting… Not only was it delish, I didn’t need a topping (I’m big on textures [creamy AND crunchy...]! Buuuut maybe I still topped it with hot caramel sauce too… [Saahrry, said me in a Kristin Wiig's Gilly voice].

Places that are on my radar to get to ASAP! Sweet Action [yup, same guys as the beer have an ice cream parlor!], Liks Ice Cream and now a Boulder-based place called Sweet Cow that’s now scooping up cones at the Cherry Creek Farmer’s Market.

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Today, I’m heading about 2 hours north of Denver and just over the CO border to Cheyenne, WY! It’s their annual Frontier Days, which is an outdoor rodeo and western celebration in Cheyenne. As an east coaster, I’m SO excited to experience this… and how appropriate that I’m going to the COWboy state ;). Can’t wait to get my hands on some ice cream while I’m up there on National Ice Cream Day! Heck ya’ll, maybe I’ll be orderin’ a scoop from an ol’ ice cream wagon… I dunno! But, you betcha, I’ll report back, ya here!!

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Last year, during the entire month of July, I went on an ice cream road-trip!!  I filmed myself at, oh I don’t know, over 10 shops all over Rhode Island and produced a story for The Rhode Show each week during that month. I called it “Meg Moo’s Ice Cream Rhode Trip” ;) Check them out here:

Ice Cream Shops in the Providence area:

Ice Cream Shops in and around the Newport area:

Ice Cream Shops near some of Rhode Island’s Best Beaches:

Ice Cream Shops in the Middle of the State of Rhode Island:

 

Thirty Times Three.

 

What’s in a title, anyway? Like take the title of this post, “Thirty Times Three” — what does thirty times three, mean? (hmm, 3 X 3 is 9, then just add the z—) Nope, not 90. Well… technically… I guess yeah, it is — but just not here. I wanted this title to imply that I’ll talk about three different references to the number thirty (“so talk about it already!” said you reading this), and I will, right now — Sometimes a title is, well, just that — a title. And what you make of it is what counts most! At least, that’s something I’ve truly embraced over the past thirty days (There it is! My first mention of thirty!). Thirty days ago, I moved to Denver (from my home state of RI) and began working as the freelance, fill-in TV Host at the local stations, KDVR (FOX31) and KWGN (Channel 2). Sure, by some comparisons, a full-time TV Host position sounds ideal (ie health benefits, consistent schedule aaaaand that formal title!) But, this opportunity has been NO less significant –
 

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This a big market jump for me (Denver ranks as one of the nation’s top 20 media markets!!) and I’ve already learned lots working with seasoned professionals and talents at the stations. Plus, the variety of roles and unique projects that have come my way in just a month’s time, have totally surpassed what and how much I anticipated doing! So, take it from me — if you have an opportunity to do work that you love, are hungry to learn and grow and are willing to take thoughtful risks (ie job/money security and moving away from family/friends), I strongly urge you to take it! Particularly, if you can relate to this –

 

 

I just celebrated the big 3-0 on June 8th!  But — the word ‘celebrate’ wasn’t always my word of choice when I’d think about this big day. Why not? Well, for starters, pretty much all of my friends and friends of friends (around my age) are one or more of the following: in a serious relationship, married, pregnant, have a kid, have a dog, own a home, own a car…. you get the idea. I (still) can’t check-off… ANY of those milestones. So, sometimes I’d find myself focusing on all the titles, I’m not… like, I’m not a “fiance,” “homeowner” or a “mom to a dog.” The list goes on and it was easy keep it going. Probably because they say it’s normal to compare yourself to others — but that made turning thirty worse. So, anytime those negative feelings crept up, I’d talk with my good friends about how I was feeling, read inspiring stories about others in a similar boat and focused on the “freedom” I had to get up and move across the country, in a quest to follow my dreams… And it only got easier from there –

 

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After moving to a vibrant city, working in a positive environment and meeting new, like-minded people, it became easy to accept where *I* am in life... I want and need to be completely focused on me right now. What's the point of simply having the "fiance," "homeowner" or "mom to a dog" title just to have it? Better to focus on the present and the rest will come (hear that, Universe? ;)) And finally, my third point about thirty --



Something I've had to work at, both mentally and physically, has been dedicating at least thirty minutes a day to doing some sort of physical activity. I'm not an exercise guru, nor do I want that title. Sure, those awesome classes that make working out fun are great, but I just don't have the means to shell out that kind of money. And working in an industry where it's pretty common to move around a lot, I definitely don't want to deal with the hassles of breaking a gym membership (again...).  So, I've found creative ways to stretch my dollar -- AND ways to keep my wallet closed all together! (I'll dish on that at a later date!!). But whatever it is I'm doing to get my 'workout on' -- after thirty minutes in -- I feel a sense of calm come over me.  Because I know it's helping me stay in shape, be healthy -- and since, hey, looks matter in my industry, it's only helping me land any title with "TV" in it!!

My Travels Thru The Midlands

There are four official regions in the US and until a couple days ago, I’d spent time in just three of them. I never realized that before. I’ve been fortunate to travel around the US, whether for vacation, a wedding or work and visit various cities in a bunch of states — but apparently never in the Midwest! While on this road trip cross country with my mom, we’ve driven *through* most of this region. But — it’s been a great way to see some awesome US landscapes, bridges and bodies of water!  Plus, I loved getting to see the skylines of cool cities like Cincinnati (OH) and Louisville (KY). It made me eager to get back there and check out the food scene, art and people *in* those cities… and I’ll remember the first time I was “there” was with my mom :).

 

 

We did get a chance to see some of Dayton (OH) because I wanted to make a visit; I’ll be able to share more at a later date.

Also, my mom wanted to see the Grand Arch in St. Louis (MO), so we did that (I took a 10 sec video, here)…

 

…and had a blast exploring more of what that city has to offer!! Particularly, having our 1st sit-down meal (We’ve been living on Trader Joe’s snacks and hotel fruit for four days; No complaints here, but you know it’s telling when you’re *craving* the rest of the food pyramid.). We heard the ‘St. Louis Gooey Butter Cake’ was not to miss at the Ritz, soooo we headed there for a delish, healthy lunch… followed by THAT!

 

 

In both Dayton and St. Louis, everyone was super friendly and engaging, even fellow visitors we had the pleasure of meeting. It’s always fun to meet new people, especially when we’re far from home. Aaaand speaking of that place that’s unlike any other place,

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we passed Kansas City (MO) not that long ago enroute to our next overnight stay in Topeka (KA)! And this leg of the trip was quite the experience :-/  — from stopping for gas at the same place you could buy enough fireworks for the Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks on the Hudson…

 

… to nearly pulling over when a flash flood suddenly started AND OVERLAPPED with blinding sunlight!!

Can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings!! BTW, What’s your fave Midwest city and why???

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{HAIR} I get my hair done at Studio B, a salon and beauty boutique in Cranston, RI

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FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @MeaghanMooney1

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Meag on the Move

It’s hard to believe it was just a year and a half ago that I was packing my truck (and a Uhaul…) and moving from NYC (my home away from home/RI for the past 7 years)…

 

 

…to move to an apartment in Providence, after winning a year contract to co-host “The Rhode Show” weekday mornings on WPRI12.

 

Soon after my 1 year was up, my AMAZING family helped me pack my truck (and another Uhaul!), again and drove everything down to the other end of the state where I grew up.

And so, for the last few months, as I’ve pursued my on-camera career by networking like crazy, auditioning and contributing to different media outlets…. I’ve also traveled a bunch, taken on new workouts like never before and have had awesome QT with my folks, friends & family at special occasions, holidays and celebrations…

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NOW — I’m off to Denver, Colorado!! For new opportunities, including working as on-air talent for KDVR/FOX 31 Denver and KWGN/Colorado’s Own. I visited them recently and I cannot wait to get to work with everyone there! Denver’s an incredible market, so I’m very excited to gain incredible experience!!

And so the road trip begins; From Rhode Island all the way to Denver with some stops in between. But, this time, with just my truck… no Uhaul… :-0 !!!  But, I packed it so well, I feel like I could be a professional tetras player, if there ever was one!

Plus, my mom wanted to come with me!!  How cool is that!?!  She’s been making hotel plans for us (score!) and made, oh just a few trips to the library… hmm I wonder if she’s just as excited… ;)

 

First overnight stop is Jersey, then Ohio. I’ve already started posting on social media — AND collecting hotel toiletries for RI nonprofit, Amenity Aid . So, please keep coming back to the blog and follow me on social media. But first, tell me, where have you road tripped???

 

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What I’m Wearing:

{TOP} Black Top: Ann Taylor

{NECKLACE} Black and White: Macy’s

{GLASSES} Green Armani w/ Prescription from an Optometrist in Brooklyn

{HAIR} I get my hair done at Studio B, a salon and beauty boutique in Cranston, RI

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FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @MeaghanMooney1

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My DIY Style Tips in Ladies’ Home Journal Mag!

Memorial Day Weekend, the official unofficial start to summer, is just around the corner. This is also a great time to start long-awaited DIY fashion projects and nothing says summer – and American ;) – like a pair of cool, worn-in denim cut-offs! This is easy and fun to do, and I show you how to DIY your own in the current issue of Ladies’ Home Journal Magazine!!!

Meaghan Mooney, Style Expert in LHJ Magazine June 2014

From DIY fashion to road-trip tunes, the article boasts a list of quick tips to help you make this summer the best one yet! And who better to curate this list of fresh ideas, but New York City based writer and co-author of Twenty Something Girl: 1001 Quick Tips and Tricks to Make Your Life Easier, Melissa Fiorenza.

But back to the jeans… chances are, you probably already have a great pair of jeans to make “new” again, particularly if you recently spring cleaned your closet as I did in this post.

If not, find a pair that someone else broke in for you at your local Goodwill Industries or consignment store. No need to spend cash that you could otherwise use on a cute top to go with! Below are some modern looks paired nicely with denim cut-offs. [Btw, when I pin, I usually try and add my style POV or tips.]

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I love incorporating high-low fashion elements to create my outfits. It makes them more interesting, especially when I have a DIY story to tell!!  Check out highlights of some of my other DIY projects in my Style Expert Reel, below:

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What I’m Wearing:

{DRESS} Cap-sleeve, floral pattern dress from Shoppe Pioneer in Providence, RI

{BELT} Neon yellow and skinny from Target.

{HAIR} I get my hair done at Studio B, a salon and beauty boutique in Cranston, RI

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FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @MeaghanMooney1

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Skincare That’s Mother Earth Approved

To celebrate Earth Day this year, I’m sharing ways I’ve recently revived my skincare routine with all natural ingredients and safe home remedies.

So, why go natural when we have SO many cool & pretty skincare products to choose from today? Well, when we look closer at them, many contain harsh chemicals not in our skin or health’s best interest. The trick is knowing what ingredients to look for to truly nourish and protect our faces. That’s a tip to keep in mind whether you’re purchasing over-the-counter products or DIY’ing a home remedy to put on your face. I do a combo of both natural products and DIY to cleanse, moisturize and de-puff!

 

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FACIAL CLEANSER: Your cleanser shouldn’t leave your face feeling dry and tight, so avoid ones with soap. It’s also important to exfoliate to get rid of dead skin cells and absorb products better (Just don’t recommend doing it daily).

 

Over the counter — This cleanser was formulated by an esthetition with mothers-to-be in mind. So, while all ingredients have been screened to be safe during pregnancy, it’s also for those with sensitive, even acne-prone skin. The key ingredient is lactic-acid which is derived from sour/fermented milk and helps improve skin’s texture and hydration level. Lemon peel oil helps brighten dull skin.

 

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Belli Anti-blemish Facial Cleanser, $22.

 

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Gives ‘milky complexion’ a whole new meaning!

 

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Get a bright and clearer complexion!

 

DIY 2-in-1 cleanser and exfoliant– Mix brown sugar into your milky lactic-acid cleanser to make it a 2-in-1 cleanser and exfoliant. Massage all over face for 1-2 min. This is a natural and safe way to exfoliate your face — something I do a few times a week at night. It gets rid of dead skill cells to even out skin tone, keeps my pores cleaned (as possible!) and stimulates collagen.

 

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Morning after I exfoliate, I find my products absorb into my skin better!

 

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Raw brown sugar is best because it’s soft and won’t sting like salt might.

 

FACE MASK: Masks are a fun way to pamper your skin with highly concentrated active ingredients. Apply a moisturizing face mask 1-2 times a week to get instantly hydrate skin and tighten pores.

 

Over the counter – Not only does Origins list all the harful chemicals they do not use in this mask, we also know it’s made up of 2 of the earth’s most nourishing clock-stoppers: Algae, that helps boost natural collagen and has high levels of anti-oxidants and Apricot kernel oil, which helps protect and nourish skin, even if your’s is irritated.

 

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Origins Drink Up 10-Minute Face Mask, $24.

 

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Rid your body of toxins with algae! Who knew!

 

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The benefits of this delish fruit go beyond taste!

 

DIY face mask – Mix equal parts aloe and warmed honey (start with 1 tsp ea). Apply to clean/dry face for 20 min. Thoroughly wash off.

 

Use real aloe vera. Only the real stuff is naturally rich in proteins, collagen, vitamins and minerals to hydrate skin and help maintain a brighter, healthier looking complexion. Pure, raw honey is a natural anti-oxidant that has been used in skincare for so many years! It protects the skin from harmful rays, rejuvenates depleted skin with its ability to retain moisture and it also helps treat acne.

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You can even add raw brown sugar to exfoliate skin upon applying the mixture.

 

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Lily of the Desert, $5.  Use this on its own, daily! It has helped soothe and heel my skin.

 

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Aquidneck Honey, $12. If you prefer honey that’s more local to you, just make sure it’s pure, raw and pesticide free!

 

EYE REMEDIES: The skin under our eyes is extremely delicate and from allergies to alcohol, there are so many causes for our often dark circles and puffiness.

 

Over the counter – 100% Pure makes an all natural eye cream that works as an anti-inflammatory and smooths the most sensitive skin on our faces. The caffeine rich green coffee helps reduce swelling and brighten that under the eye area. The rose hip oil has astringent qualities. Because it’s rich in fatty acids, anti-oxidents and vitamins, it helps regenerate new skin cells.

 

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100% Pure Organic Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream, $12.

 

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Another great reason to add caffeine to your routine!

 

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Rose hip oil has ingredients essential to skin health.

 

DIY to D-PUFF! – Brew green tea bags for 5 min. Ring out, place in freezer bag and store in freezer 30 min (or longer). Before placing under eyes, wait a couple min to thaw.

 

This is SUCH an inexpensive and easy way to help reduce dark circles and puffiness around the eyes! The tannins in tea bags shrink blood vessels which in turn reduces swelling and discoloration. Plus, the tea’s caffeine helps de-puff and it’s anti-oxidant rich which is great for the skin.

 

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Trust me… it works!

 

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Yogi Herbal Green Tea Bags, $4. Run, don’t walk, to stock up on green tea!

 

{I get my hair done at Studio B, a salon and beauty boutique in Cranston, RI}

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FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @MeaghanMooney1

 

Got a Surf Lesson by Land and Sea!

Since I grew up in the Ocean State, I thought it was about time I try and surf…

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But, before I hit the ocean with Warmwinds in Narragansett, I took a novel fitness class called SURFSET Fitness in Newport to help me get ready for the *real* waves!

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Spoiler Alert: I fall anyway ;)

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Now, watch this totally gnarly video, bra!  … I couldn’t resist ;) 

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A HUGE thank you to everyone at Warmwinds and Surfset Fitness Newport at Floortime Studios, as well as my intern Meghan Fitzgerald for all the photos and my photographer/editor Nicholas Doscher!

What I’m Wearing:

{SWIMSUIT} Quicksilver: Surfshop in Byron Bay, New South Wales, Australia

{WETSUIT} Roxy: Warmwinds

{SUNGLASSES} Ray Ban: gift from Allure Mag

{SHIRT} Grey jersey knit Tee: American Apparel

{DRESS} Kelly-green, fitted knee-length/sleeveless: Rachel Roy

{SHOES} Prabal Gurung for Target

{I get my hair done at Studio B, a salon and beauty boutique in Cranston, RI}

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FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @MeaghanMooney1

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HEY, THERE’S MORE!

Check it out!

Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan tried SURFSET Fitness today (2/11/2014) as part of their #endwinternow series.

Now, if I only had the foresight to go wavy that day…I’d totally take credit, now for Kelly’s move below ;)

Meaghan and Kelly Surfset

Spring Clean Your Closet

Goodbye Winter ’14 and hello Spring! And after the winter we’ve had, I bet you’re almost excited for every single thing that spring brings, even if it means blowing your nose 500 times a day and having to shave your legs more than twice a month (or is that just me?). Spring cleaning is another one of those things I don’t typically like the sound of, even though I haven’t technically Spring cleaned in years. Maybe ever. Yea, definitely never.
That’s probably because — Well, for one, I loathe cleaning. Two, I’ve moved every year since 2002. So really, I never had the chance to ;). I would just pack up my stuff – that would of course accumulate year after year — and move to the next place.**  Sure, I’d get rid of things here and there with every move, but I guess I never realized how much stuff I actually had and I never had the time to organize or go through it. OK yes, I also have a shopping problem. Anyway, when I finally, sorta, had time after my crazy year on The Rhode Show, it was a perfect now-or-never opportunity to try and do an early Spring cleaning. Thanks to my cousin Kenzie who volunteered so much of her time helping me (like I’m talking more than a week’s worth of time!), it actually got done. Plus, now I can share some ideas and tips to help you with your closet clean-up!
First, we de-cluttered the clothes, room by room, closet by closet. Whatever we were keeping, I took first dibs (obviously), then Kenzie took her pickings (it’s only fair Kay and Maddy — her sisters ;)).  Since I don’t know where my job will take me next, for my ‘folded’ apparel, I bought these containers that are both easily-accessible and mobile to live out of in the interim. Everything else is at the dry cleaners or got hung up and then eventually made its way to the coolest invention ever — wardrobe boxes. Next, we went through my accessories and shoes to determine what to keep. BT-Dub, check out that awesome shoe-shelf my dad made me! (I guess he figured, can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em!)
As far as what I wasn’t keeping… I put aside all my ‘business attire’ I wore at my old office jobs and arranged a drop off at Dress for Success Boston. Last year, I spread the word at work and a colleague added a generous number of pieces to include! (More from me on DFS Boston). With pretty much everything else, Kenzie and I got to boxing and labeling for Goodwill Industries because when I lived in Brooklyn, I’d enjoyed walking my stuff over to the nearby location and chatting with the people who worked there. Here in RI? My only option for a Goodwill is an unattended drop off box. They kinda resemble dumpsters, no? Either way, I didn’t want to feel like I was ‘trashing’ my stuff, so I looked up the nearest one in Mass. The Morgan Memorial Goodwill Industries has a South Attleboro location that’s super close to the RI/Mass border and it made the drop-off experience more personal, which was important to me.
And what better way to earn a little much-need cash than to consign! So, I headed to Blackbirds Consignment in North Providence, Goddess Closet in Greenville and Second Time Around in Providence with all o’ the below and more. BUT, get this — I’ve already earned a couple hundred bucks at Blackbird!
Aaaand, Kenzie helped me clean out more than just my closet. She helped me get rid of things I really didn’t need and I’ll tell you, a second opinion is underrated at a time like this. She also helped me designate a “home” for everything else, which helped me tremendously every single time I felt overwhelmed by the task — which was often. But the best part of going through this whole experience WITH Kenzie was having her company. We laughed SO much! Like, every time we found 1 of my 90 notebooks with ideas scribbled down all over them and those old jazz dance shoes I INSISTED on keeping! (“But, Kenz, what if I take a Zumba class?” is what I asked her.). Then, as if cousin of the year couldn’t impress me even more, Kenzie went out and bought me this great notebook as a “home” for all my new ideas!  (loved the personal message on the first page!).

 

**Ever  catch this video??

 

{I get my hair done at Studio B, a salon and beauty boutique in Cranston, RI}

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FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @MeaghanMooney1