Six of the Best Books for Your Summer Reading List

I’m sharing six of the best books to put on your summer reading list.  You have your manicure and pedicure and your dreaded swim suit; now you just need to know the best books to read this summer.  Whether you’re going to the ocean this summer or to a cabin in the mountains, hopefully these six summer reads will set you up.  

In the video above, I’ve time stamped each summary if that will help you.

The best book on this summer reading list is The Devil in the Junior League is about exactly what the title says. – When you go on your first summer vacation, take this book.  Quick wit, fun, new phase of life stage for a character with two middle names who realizes her whole pearls in the kitchen life is utterly fake as are several uppity members of her local Junior League.  I could not put this book down.  You think you’re going to roll your eyes. It’s not your typical girlfriend book; it’s more of a humanizing of the women in this elite club when an odd ball tries to be accepted into the club.  And the friendships that grow are fun, cool and lighthearted.

Number two on this summer reading list is The Lake House – Kate Morton – spins family secrets into characters seeking forgiveness of their own failures suspenseful page turners characters

Set in Cornwall, England bouncing between the 1930s and early 2000s. Genius vocabulary elevating ur IQ as u read.  This book is a love story, a mystery, mixed with a whole other plot going on present day while you learn about the crime in the 1930s.  You wonder what you would have done back then if you were part of this wealthy family.

There are so many twists and surprises that make it a quick summer read.  The Lake House has a reading group guide.  Have any of you had a book club in the summer?  I guess you would read it during the summer and then lead the book club in the fall.

#3 on this summer reading list is The Fix – David Baldacci about a guy named Amos Decker who gained the sometimes inconvenient gift of not being able to forget…anything.

A guy shoots another person in front of the FBI building and then shoots himself.  But Amos cannot find out how they could’ve known each other to even begin to solve the crime that he witnessed.  Come to find out, it’s a matter of national security that he figure it out.  Grabs u early as it’s a thriller.  Based on the first 2 books in the series about Amos Decker.  But you don’t have to have read the first two.  But they’re really good as well.  Another quick summer read.

Number Four is by one of the best authors, Lee Child, called Night School.

He always rats someone out who’s been needing a good ratting out for a long time.  Sarcastic, what-you-see-is-what-you-get Jack Reacher brilliantly solves the crime and uncovers truth in a way that no other character can.  He supposedly has to take a class at night but figures out there’s a catch almost immediately.  I like to read these books on the airplane or in the airport; I feel like everyone around me is a spy for some other country; I’m very suspect of each passenger.  The answer to solve the crime is just in front of them through the whole book. 

The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty – Taking you by storm in the first chapter, we learn a secret that baffles your decision-making skills as a wife, stretching the reader to weigh her woman’s intuition and pointing fingers ability as a woman, mother, wife, or friend.  Can something so bad bring them closer?  It is fun but suspenseful because you know she doesn’t want anyone knowing the secret.  It really makes you think what you would do if you found out this secret. 

Big Little Lies – With a bit too much language imo this book catches your attention to know more about each character.  She builds what you think you want to know about each character slowly and methodically.  If you have had a child go through pre-k and elementary school, you will know exactly who some of these characters are.  We meet some stereotypical upper middle class and wealthy women wearing masks to hide their hurts.  Aaaaannnndd when they all become friends, only SOME of the masks come off.  You will love these ladies and feel so sorry for them at the same time.  Great book!

For the bonus book, make sure you watch the video.

Photographs are by Antoine Therizols, Brooke Lark, James Connolly, Giammarco Boscaro,  Fidelia Zheng, Bethany Laird, Toa Heftiba, Annie Spratt,  Brittany Gaiser, Quentin Kemmel,  Dmitry Ratushny,  Charisse Kenion,  Ben White, Ben Rosett, Kristina Flour,  Spencer Imbrock, Lian Jonkman,  Eric Didier, Jomar Thomas, Andrew Ruiz,  Paul Smith, Charisse Kenion, Vadim Sherbakov,  Darius Bashar,  Ian Dooley, Suhyeon Choi, Kendyle Nelsen, Quentin Kemmel, Anna Ogiienko, Xavier Sotomayor, Shttefan, and Janko Ferlič.

Occasionally I use affiliate links, and the opinions are always honest and truthfully mine.

6 Steps on How To Get a Natural Eyeshadow Look if You’re Over 40

In this tutorial, I’ll teach you how to create a natural makeup look on your eyes in 6 steps.  You will practice with neutral shades of eyeshadows you can build upon based on your skin tone.  Whether you have blue eyes, green eyes or are a brown eyed girl…whether you have olive skin tones or are fair skinned, these natural shades will look really pretty on you.  I will show you which brushes to use for each eyeshadow shade.

I’m using a pretty palette of matte colors that will give you a set of neutrals, medium colors and deep color shades, and as your makeup confidence grows with practice and errors, you can add some brighter more bold colors that will transform your makeup look if that is what you want.  These shades all go on light, and as you put more on, they get brighter and brighter.

Natural does not mean frumpy.  Over 40 does not mean boring eyeshadow.

Welcome to my LauriePOP Ideas That POP Channel.  My name is Laurie and I create YouTube videos about ideas that POP into my head and I share them with you. 

With neutral makeup looks, we want to help our own natural skin tones POP.    Before I start with eyeshadow, I always prime my eyes with primer.  I’ve tried several drug store primers, and this is the best for my skin.  You want it to be a little tacky feeling.  Don’t choose one that’s liquidy. Primer helps the color stay on…especially those under tones.  Shades of color cannot POP if they don’t have a backdrop to POP from.

Step one:  Apply a two-layer neutral base that matches your skin tone.  We’re going to stipple the first layer with a flat brush onto the primed eyelid.  Then we use a fluffy brush that will disperse a lot of the off white color shade.  Look at that base; I am all about it.  I’ve watched YouTube videos for five years, and I used to sell Mary Kay.  I would think, “Oh, I already have a natural, skin color on my eyelids, so I can just start adding color.”  But that is not the case for most skin types.  Side note: you are naturally pretty because of that inner beauty that shines like the stars above.  While I’m teaching you how to make your eyeshadow beauty POP, just remember that you are more than enough already.  Now, let’s have some fun with our creative talents.

Step 2 is to find a transition color for the crease that is a little darker than your skin tone.  This shade is my favorite transition color.  It looks like velvet on my skin.  I could leave the house just like this.  Remember to blend around the edges for an even more natural look.

I like to add more of this transition color by sweeping it across my eyelids in a wind shield wiper method.  My brush is angled, but you can use any brush.  I do want the color to be on my crease and up a little and below the crease just a bit. Blend

Step 3 is to get a fluffy brush and use this light gray color.  When you mix brown and gray together, the transformation is a natural, neutral tone that is velvety rosy peach.  I love these together.  Because I have crepey eyes, my brush is going straight across from the middle of the eyelid to the edge.  When I’ve used all the color, then I can wind shield wipe it back and forth. Blend

Step 4 is to use an accent color that is dark. This Dark grayish-dark brown color just in the last edge of the crease is going to give you your personality.  Do not pull your brush all the way down or else your eye will look like it’s drooping; just go straight across – unless you have deep set eyes. Blend

Step 5 is to use eyeliner in the outer corners of your eyes.  Do not miss this step.  I have always used this Mary Kay eyeliner, and I have tried others.  See how it goes up so that you can see the skin color in-between the eyeliner and the lashes.  That is a no-no because it does not look like your natural lash line.  It looks like you have on eyeliner.  Go out a little further if this happens and bring it back down to the lash line.

You can also use a smudge brush which is short stubby bristles.  Or you can swipe it with your finger to smudge the liner.

Step 6 is to use a mascara in a sample size bottle.  It dries out quickly so just by a sample size.  My straight lashes perform well with this It Cosmetics Superhero mascara.

Are you surprised with how natural these four colors look on your skin?  I think with matte neutral colors, your skin will look like velvet.  Natural makeup looks are not boring; there is personality and natural skin tone beauty POPping out from the art that is on your eyelids.

When you have practiced and learned from your errors, add burgundies greens blues in the crease there.  Have fun using your creativity to play around with what looks natural.


How I Organized My Closet Without Overwhelming Myself in Three Steps

In three steps I will show you how I organized my closet without overwhelming myself…the result was a decluttered, thinned out space surprise surprise.

My closet was like a black hole. organize closet three steps

closet no order cluttered overwhelming
I have clothes in here that I have not worn since moving here almost three years ago.  Stacks of scarves, piles of travel bags, purses, belts are still literally hanging around.  There is no purpose – no order in my closet. But the process of decluttering this closet seems overwhelming and too large of a task.  So today I’m taking a step back and looking at closet organization in a new way. organize closet overwhelming

I don’t want you to think of it as organizing this closet; that task seems too overwhelming mentally.  I want to declutter and free up some space.  When I get dressed everyday, this process is going to help me be less stressed, I’ll spend less time getting dressed and I’ll feel good about the steps I’ve made.  Here are the three steps on how to declutter and organize your closet without feeling overwhelmed.  Stick around to the end to see what you can tape to the very back of your wardrobe that will help you stay organized.

If this is your first visit to my LauriePOP Channel, welcome! My name is Laurie and I share ideas that POP into my head.  If you want a thinned out wardrobe with ideas for how to declutter without being overwhelmed, POP into my video.

Professional organizers tell you to take everything out of your closet, but that’s too much of a task for me.

Step # 1  I know I should get rid of what I do not need. But I’m not there.  So I’ll start with turning around all of my hangers.  start videoing me turning around the hangers. turn-hangers-around-organize-closet

In this step, I touch and actually see what clothes I’m hanging on to.  I see those awesome buys that I forgot about.  In this easy step I also will see what clothes in my wardrobe do not fit.  Step #1 will take you about 7 minutes.  So this is a balanced closet.  I represent much of America by having too many clothes that I have not worn, I keep clothes that I do not need.  I keep buying things I think I need but don’t really need.  In the past I have been unmotivated to clean out my closet. I’m a product of consumerism, and that means that when I walk into my favorite big box store like Old Navy or Francesca’s, I cannot NOT buy something if it’s cute and super inexpensive.  I now know that this is called fast fashion.  I’m not there yet, but I’m working on it.

Step #2 Take note of what IS cluttered you in your closet.  Do research on your OWN closet. Do not rush this step.  Take one minute each day for a week even.  What are the problem areas? problem areas closet organization

For me, I have belts that I don’t use taking up valuable closet space.  My shelves are so shallow so my travel bags and scarves and sweaters keep falling off.  By looking and critiquing my closet for a minute or two for a few days, I came up with 3 areas to declutter.  I highly recommend only having 3 areas to work on so that your task does not seem overwhelming. handbag organization cluttered

Step #3  Figure out what items can go in containers or be hung.  We’ve all seen the scarf holder, and since I don’t need them that often, I’m getting the scarf holder to get them off of my closet shelves. scarves-sweaters-closet-unorganized

These makeup bags and handbags that I travel with fall off every time I reach for something on this shelf.  I thought about using a shoe box, but they’re a bit deep.  I need shallow and low containers.  So I bought myself this container for paper.  It has a lid so I’m not sure I’ll use that. 

Purses can go in those clear bins, but I really want to see each purse so I will double them onto hangers. 

Check out this thinned out wardrobe, open spaced closet.  See all the space I have?  In decluttering my closet, I have organized it without even being overwhelmed.  Organizing your closet space gives you a bonus benefit of decluttering.

under my tops
organized declutter closet space
Organized and open for business!

I do have in the back of my closet a list of what jewelry colors I need.  When i wear these boots, I go to get a necklace, and I think, “Oh, I don’t have a necklace that really blends with these cognac colored boots.” So I write down cognac necklace (boots). needs-list-closet

When I go thrifting, those are items I can add to my wardrobe with purpose and not clutter. list-of-outfits

When I put together a cute outfit that I’ve never thought about, I write it at the bottom.

Happy thinning out to you!  I hope your decluttered closet was not overwhelming and eye opening.  Thank you for POPping over.

Tutorial on How to Get Beach Wave Curls

This tutorial is on how to create loose beach wave curls with short to medium style even long hair.  My LauriePOP YouTube Channel above will give you exact details and is easier to follow in my opinion.  I create YouTube videos on travel ideas that POP into my head, makeup ideas that POP into my head and DIY tutorials.  POP over and check it out.

You can have natural looking waves in your hair if you follow these six steps.

Step #1

When your hair is in the ocean salt water, your hair feels a little stiff as it dries.  For natural beach waves, then, put Mousse on damp hair, not soaking wet.  When hair is soaking wet, it’s too heavy to hold the mousse.  So dry it just a tad or go get dressed, or keep your hair in a towel before starting the beach waves process.

Step #2

Do NOT comb your hair once you put the mousse on.  You can style your hair before applying the mousse, but you will have extra hold and stiffness if you let it be.

Dry it.  Air dry.  Dry it. 

Step #3 For beach wave curls, Leave 1-2 inches out of the curling wand before rolling under.

Step #4 Hold your curling iron horizontal against your head.  Resist the urge to hold it vertically for loose curls.  Since the back of my hair is short, I just roll it in rolls to give it some shape.

The short layers at the top of my head are so short that I don’t go alllllll the way under.  They have plenty of volume and would be too tight of a curl.  Farther down here, where my hair is thicker and longer, I will roll my hair all the way under to my scalp.

Step #5 When you get to four seconds, open your curling iron just a bit and pull the rest of the hair forward.  If you have long hair, this is where you will pull the hair vertically down.  We are telling the hair where we want it to stay for the day.  Not tight curls, but loose locks that have a natural wave to them, as if we were at the beach that morning. 

For this difficult part of my hair, I have to curl a chunk of it backwards so that my hair doesn’t turn into one big kahuna wave facing forward.  When I asked my first hair dresser how to get loose locks, she said to do alternating curls front and facing back.  And with practice I have to curl just one or two pieces backward and this is how.  I roll it up to my scalp and after four seconds I pull back, vertical and downward.

Step #6 in this beach wave hair tutorial is to not brush it once it’s curled.  Let your hair memorize how it’s supposed to look.  When you’ve finished putting on your makeup or making breakfast, finger your curls out a bit by picking it up a bit.  Run your fingers up your scalp and just pull out a bit.  Do not go all the way to the end of each curl.

A problem that might happen to you is that you left the curling iron in your hair too long and the curl is way too tight for that area.  If you want loose wavey curls, pull down (with your fingers) the end of that curl and hold it for 2 seconds.

Curling Iron – Wand.  Use the correct size for your hair type.  In order to create loose locks, I need tighter curls if that makes sense.  I cannot use a flat iron for this look.  Curls are not beachy looking.  They are too loose with no shape.  A curling iron with this type of barrel is great for my fine hair.  And by fine I mean limp.  It curls my hair so that as it falls throughout the day, the hair is wavey and not immediately straight.

Let me know if this tutorial helps you please!

Other videos you may like:

How to Lift Your Hooded Eyes (Eyeshadow Trick)

What NOT to Wear on the Airplane

How to Use Packing Cubes

Chat with me sometime at Facebook or Instagram.

Occasionally I use affiliate links, and all opinions are my very honest ones.