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Arugula: Two Ways

June 28th, 2014 · Uncategorized

I’ve got a little salad inspiration for you today. This is so simple, but oh so delicious! I love it when you can create a symphony of flavors with less than a handful of ingredients.

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The other night my husband and I were feeling super lazy, but were in the mood for a light dinner. Combing our fridge, I ended up throwing together these his-and-hers arugula salads. Mine had some figs and feta cheese, his contained grape tomatoes. Both were dressed with some creamy caesar romano dressing from Trader Joe’s. Two simple summer salads in two minutes!

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Spring at Sephora

May 30th, 2014 · beauty, shopping

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I have some relatives visiting from the Philippines this week, and I thought it would be nice to introduce the special gals in this group to some trial-size versions of my favorite products at Sephora. I love a good reason to shop! Sharing my picks with you, just in case you find yourself shopping for a special gal pal in your life.

The Haul

I thought the “Meet Your Match” set had some beautiful spring colors that would transition well into summer. Plus it contains some very popular brands-of -the-moment, which I think would seem intriguing to an international shopper.

The Living Proof full shampoo and conditioner was a hit with my mom during the holidays. How do I know? She requested full-size products for Mother’s Day. I’m hoping this dynamic duo will also be a hit with my aunt.

They’re Real mascara and the POREfessional primer by Benefit are cult favorites. Am I right? I think my 17-year-old cousin who loves to get dolled up for special occasions would enjoy this.

As for the bonus products, I must confess, they are mine! Call me lipstick lady. Bite Beauty’s Deconstructed Rose lip gloss set and a YSL lip product have been on my Sephora list for the past month. This particular YSL shade, Fuchsia in Rage, No. 19, was a recommendation from Angie, a fellow beauty blogger on You Tube. She had a helpful Pantone color of the year themed video full of radiant orchid recommendations. I’m so happy that this shade worked out for me!

YSL Rouge Volupte in No. 19 Fuchsia in Rage{Lipstick: YSL Rouge Volupte in No. 19 Fuchsia in Rage}

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Daisy Daze

May 29th, 2014 · my style

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 {Target Tank | Gap Jeans | Anthropologie Belt | KG Kurt Geiger Match Sandals}

Style doesn’t get any more basic than blue jeans and a white top. This combo was my absolute favorite in grade school and involved pieces from Guess. These days, my look has evolved a bit, but for a healthy dose of whimsy, I like to add some texture into the mix. Can we talk about those daisies?! It was love at first sight when I saw it on the rack at Target.

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Outlet Shopping Gems

May 23rd, 2014 · shopping

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I was in deal heaven while I was at the Desert Hills Premium Outlets Thursday afternoon. Kate Spade was having a fabulous offer in-store. Everything was priced at 50-percent off and sales associates were handing out coupons for an additional 20-percent off all handbag purchases. The little beaut above is named the “small marguerite” and it  came home with me.  How cute are the scallop details? Once I had the bag in the crook in my arm, I knew we were a perfect match. She’s small, but roomy and flattering on my small frame.

In case you’re curious about what’s currently in shop, below are a couple snapshots I managed to take on my way out the store.

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Over at J.Crew, a similar deal was in effect. Everything was marked down 50-percent off. I picked up a couple summer dresses. One in the prettiest shade of neon violet color and the other was navy with a pineapple pattern.

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If you’re a fan of haul videos, well you’re in luck! I just uploaded one to my YouTube channel. Enjoy! And I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

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Effortless Pairings

May 19th, 2014 · style

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 {free people dress / kurt geiger match sandals }

 Weekends are so wonderful for fun little frocks and effortless outfits that require little thinking. Friday afternoon was in the 90s so a dress was a necessity. I love  the festive details of this one by Free People and the turquoise color is something that is unique to my closet. It brings me back to my Costa Rican honeymoon last summer when I wore this multiple times around the hotel. Don’t ya just love when a part piece reminds you of a special time and season in your life? I wonder which dress will be my standout for this summer.

 

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 {Urban Outfitters V-neck, Target jeans }

This outfit was for Sunday morning full of errands. I had been out late the night before celebrating a friend’s 30th birthday, and was feeling a little tired but wanted to keep things playful. I love the BDG tees from Urban Outfitters. They’re so soft and come in a variety of prints that can be playful, quirky or simply basic. I’m always on the lookout for what’s new when it comes to their tees. I thought that pairing the owl t-shirt with my polka dot jeans and bow tie sandals would be a fun and casual approach without thinking too hard about what to wear that morning.

 Hope y’all had a wonderful weekend!

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Discovering Muji

May 17th, 2014 · Uncategorized

This week I’ve been raving about the wonderful wonders of Muji on my YouTube channel and it’s time to let y’all in on this fabulous find. I’ve passed by this hidden gem several times since it opened in December, but I was not fully aware of the treasures inside. It’s full of simple and well-designed home goods, which may sound kinda boring, but I’m such a nerd for this kinda shopping. Perusing the aisles inspired me to get my act together and organize my beauty products. Their organizational systems are fairly-priced and offer customizable options, which is ideal when you’re tackling a small space.

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Brick and mortar shops are located in L.A., Northern California and in New York.  A new shop will open in Santa Monica sometime in June and for the rest of the U.S. there is an online shop.

I’ll do a follow up soon on how I’ve organized my vanity area once everything is situated. In the meantime, check out what I picked up over on my YouTube channel.

 

 

 

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The Best Drugstore Makeup Shopping Tip Ever

May 6th, 2014 · beauty

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I was recently at Walgreens shopping for foundation when a helpful sales associate shed some light on the most helpful makeup purchasing tip ever .

Let me just preface this by saying, for me, drugstore foundation is a tricky thing to match. It’s something I typically avoid purchasing because I have yet to buy the right shade and I’ve always thought that drugstore cosmetics are non-returnable.

But drumroll, please, I’m happy to share that I stand corrected! Walgreens accepts cosmetics returns! If you are not satisfied with the product within 30 days, hit up the store with your  receipt. Woo hoo! This will change my life when it comes to drugstore makeup shopping.

I think that once I’ve matched myself and I’m ready for a repurchase, I would shop around for a better deal.

Upon a bit more research, I’ve learned that Rite-Aid and CVS also have a similar return policy for cosmetics, but Target and Ulta do not. I’ve read some online discussions where managers have declined products, so just to be sure, I’d verify with your local store for specifics.

Check out my YouTube channel for more about this enlightening experience. P.S. I realize this is my first time sharing my channel on my blog. I thought starting a YouTube channel would be a fun way of sharing my interests via video, which is my background, but I haven’t exercised this skill in quite some time. Hope you enjoy and let me know what you think. (If you can’t see the embedded video below: http://bit.ly/Qaypee)

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Around Town

April 3rd, 2014 · home

It was an errand-day full of typical things a gal has got to do to keep up with city life. I snapped a photo here and there as a challenge to myself. Appreciating the small things helps me power through my t0-do list and boy does it feel good to have everything crossed off at the end of the day.

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| Coffee shop stop at Commissary |

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| ‘Pillow Henge’ By Husband |

| Emu at Play |

| Good Stuff |

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Sephora Picks

April 2nd, 2014 · beauty, shopping

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It’s going to be a  good week because Sephora is in the middle of their spring VIB sale. When I received the invite in the mail for 15-percent off any purchase, I may have let out a squeal of excitement.  In the event that you may be a fellow VIB, I thought I’d share some thoughts on my faves from Sephora. There may be a product or two you’ll want to add to your shopping list. And if you’re not a VIB, don’t fret. Ask around. Chances are you have a friend who can hook you up.

FACE

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20 (Sand)

I’ve been using this tinted moisturizer for about year. It provides light coverage that is somewhat build-able. It’s great for everyday/casual use.  It doesn’t cause break outs and does not irritate or dry out my sensitive skin. It is pricey so I’d suggest asking for a sample before diving into a full-size product.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Genius Gel Super-Charged Foundation (Beige Deep)

I love the texture of this medium-coverage foundation. It’s not heavy or too thin. Its finish creates a smooth, diffused look. I like using it for special events, date nights and parties. It doesn’t have SPF, which creates a finish that is flattering in photos. This product is also pricey. I suggest requesting a sample before committing to a full-size product.

Illamasqua Powder Blusher (Tweak)

This is a line of highly pigmented  blushes, which means, a little goes a long way. Just one dab and a good blend is all it takes for a natural flush. This particular color is great for spring and summer. I’m looking forward to trying out more.

EYES

Urban Decay Naked

This is a versatile palette that is great for every day use and special occasions. It’s also great for travel. Any Naked palette is going to run just above $50, which is a lot. Using a VIB discount will help knock that price down a notch.

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The rose gold theme in this palette is definitely trendy, but one that I couldn’t resist. I love that it’s a palette for all seasons, it is possible to play up the darker hues for fall/winter and lighter ones spring/summer. The brush included in the palette is actually a good one, too. I’ve learned you can’t go wrong with the quality of Urban Decay eyeshadows.

Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara (Black)

This gives definition to lower lashes and does not smudge. The small brush applicator helps single out lashes for precise application. This product is part of my everyday routine.

Benefit Stay Don’t Stray (Light/Medium)

The link goes to the full size product, but I’ve always had a mini version in my collection. The formula prevents eye shadow creasing and helps with staying power. Check for the Benefit makeup kits that have a range of products. It’s a great way to stock up on this staple while trying new Benefit products.

LIPS

Guerlain Rouge G de Guerlain Jewel Lipstick Compact (Gracia)

This is the most money I’ve ever invested in a lipstick. I feel a guilty at times when I think about the price, but the lipstick is so handy during special occasions. The mirror applicator is great for elegant and quick touch ups without having to retreat to the bathroom. The quality of the lipstick is perfect. It’s light, moisturizing and the perfect rosy nude for my lips.

Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte Silky Sensual Radiant Lipstick SPF 15 (Fetish Pink)

I love the formula of this lipstick. It’s silky and moisturizing. The color doesn’t last, but with its glamorous packaging, I have no problem grabbing it in public for touch ups.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lust for Lacquer Lip Vinyl – Sheer (Overprotected)

This sheer lip gloss is perfect for light makeup days. It goes on glossy smooth and leaves a little tingle. This is another formula favorite.

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick (Beso)

For a true red—think Taylor Swift—this shade fits the bill. I can’t say it truly “stays all day,” but it does last quite a long time. The liquid texture of this lipstick is an interesting experience. It applies like a gloss and then dries to the texture of a lipstick. I had to pick it up because one of my favorite bloggers, Blaire Eadie of Atlantic-Pacific, frequently uses this shade in her style posts. She always looks so classy.

Stila Color Balm Lipstick (Valentina) paired with Make Up For Ever Aqua Lip Waterproof Lipliner Pencil (17C)

Orange is THE lip color of the season. I’ve seen it in magazine editorials and on the red carpet. A bold color like this is intimidating, but I was feeling adventurous a couple months ago. I had to attend a premiere party for a show that my husband works on. The network’s signature color is orange and therefore I had a good reason to just go for it! Thankfully, one of my favorite makeup artists, Lisa Eldridge, came out with a YouTube video just in time. She did not lead me astray with Stila’s lipstick in Valentina.

Hope these recommendations help! Happy shopping.

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Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

April 1st, 2014 · food, recipes

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When I  saw the bold declaration of this blog post, it read like a challenge to me. First of all, I’m not much of a chocolate chip cookie kinda gal, but when it comes to baking, I’ll bake only when I know there’s  gathering. And when it comes to big groups, I’ve learned that a classic, no-fail recipe, which elicits a response along the lines of “This is amazing. How did you do it?” has a bigger pay off than a dish involving complicated cooking techniques.

These chocolate chip cookies have a pinch of sea salt. The combination allows for a sweet yet savory treat. I’ve baked them for a friend’s engagement party and even for a memorial gathering. It can be comfort food or serve as a bit of a reward, proving no matter what the occasion, they’re totally appropriate.

There are two major stages to this: prepping, which requires at least 12 hours of refrigeration and then the baking with about 15 minutes for each batch.

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Once the dough has been chilled, I recommend a good cookie scoop to ensure each cookie is perfectly round. This OXO Good Grips Large Cookie Scoop is the one I have in my kitchen. Be sure to pack in the dough for an even cookie.
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Thanks to For Me, For You for sharing this “out of this world,” “best chocolate chip cookie ever” recipe. No exaggeration. These are the type of responses I get when I bring a batch to gatherings!

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