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1.29.2016

Grateful Moments


NYC-Snowmageddon-View-From-Inside-Quote
1. My view from inside at the beginning of snowmageddon of 2016

Originally, when I heard of the predicted snow storm, I was excited about the idea of being snowed in, as it's always a great excuse for cozy'ing up at home with lots of candles, catching up on reading, watching movies and to disconnect a bit. However, after so many days spent inside, it has made it a challenge to get back into the normal routine of life. The one good thing is that I got to do some organizing and got rid of things that I've been meaning to for a while now.

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2. Window view from dinner with a friend as we were excitedly anticipating that record snow storm

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3. The benefit of a snow storm is that it helps you to slow down and play games

4. Finally cleaned out my sewing drawer and got to sort out all the buttons and organized them by size.

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5. My first day emergence in the beginning of the week after the snow storm


1.28.2016

Springing Forward to 2016


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Spring-2016-Fashion-Style-Mood-Flare-Jeans-Tie-Neck-Off-Shoulder-Blouse-Mules-Clogs
Out of all the 2015 trends, the one that stuck with me the most was a favorite signature style of mine back in the 90s -  from the tie-neck and off the shoulder blouses, wide leg flare jeans to clogs and mules. It reminds me of a time period in my life when I was finally coming into my own… purchasing clothes that I really wanted and made me feel better about myself, and a time when I was surrounded by the best group of friends. For old times sake, hoping to re-tap into my more youthful days, I'm leaning towards re-introducing some of those pieces back into my wardrobe this coming spring. And I'm sure we all can agree there's an alluring quality that awakens the sexy side of us wearing a shoulder-baring top. 

See more of my favorite style: Mules and Clogs | Off Shoulder Tops + Wide Leg Flare Jeans.How about you? What fashion trends bring back the fondest memories for you?


1.25.2016

Blush and Grey + Zig Zag Faux Fur Coat


Illesteva-Cat-eye-Sunglasses+Zigzag-Fur-Coat

My ultimate go-to winter staples are anything that is as huggable as a soft stuffed teddi bear. Some of my main favorites are soft plush tops (preferably mohair or cashmere), corduroy pants and most definitely fur anything - from scarves to coats. This zig zag faux fur coat has been in high rotation lately. Other than the warmth factor fur brings, I love the touch of glamour that it adds to this simple basic outfit combination here of my grey cord skinnies and this coziest furry sweater. See the bottom of my post for more fur favorites.


Illesteva-Cat-eye-Sunglasses+Zigzag Fur Coat


First-Snow-Storm-Jonas-Illesteva-Cat-eye-Sunglasses+Zigzag Fur Coat


Cord Skinnies {similar here and here} | Blush Sweater | Faux Fur Coat {similar} | Leather Gloves | Illesteva Sunglasses {similar herehere and here} | Wedges {old - similar here and here} | Earrings {similar here and here}



1.22.2016

Grateful Moments


Venetian.Vintage.Candlestick.Light.Chandelier
1. This sweet looking chandelier currently hanging in our upstairs hallway was my first mail order light back in 2003 and has graced every place we've lived. It's a piece that brings back fond memories of the first home we owned.

Happy Friday! I felt like this week moved in slow motion, because I was feeling less than 100% of myself. Tonight, I'm going to force myself from my cocoon and head to a scheduled girls' night out on the town with a friend. We planned this a long time ago and even though I'm not really up to getting dressed to go out, I've got to do it. I feel bad to cancel at the last minute. But I'm ready for our forecasted "impending snowstorm of the year".  It'll be nice to finally get some snow (hopefully) for the season. I love the pure peaceful look and feel that it gives the city.

1.20.2016

Affordable Alternative {Funnel Neck Sweater Tops}

There was a time period in my life from my adolescent years into my twenties, that I lived in turtleneck tops. I owned every color imaginable. I mean, if it had a high neck, I was game. Up till this day, I still have a mix of several ribbed turtlenecks and mock neck tops remaining in my closet, even after innumerable amounts of wardrobe revamping and purging. I'm drawn to that sort of style not only for their warmth and comfort, but also for the ultimate chic classy vibe that they lend. And the way they elegantly elongate my neck too - makes me feel so much taller than I really am and a little bit regal, I might add. This Frame Denim one had me at first glance - from its mohair wool mix to the funnel neck and its relaxed oversized shape, I can just imagine how buttery soft and warm that it must feel against the skin. But once I saw its price tag, it quickly sent me looking for a more affordable alternative. Not too long into my search, I found this Asos funnel neck sweater that has a much more sassy style to it. I love how the fabric looks fluffy soft, the dropped shoulders gives it an effortless relaxed chic vibe and of course the most important feature - the funnel neck. And you know what else? It's on sale! Whoop!!

Shop more affordable alternatives


1.18.2016

5 TRAVEL TIPS TO ALLEVIATE JET LAG


5 Travel-Tips-to-Alleviate-Prevent-Jet-Lag-Aromatherapy-Essential-Oils

Let's face it, even though traveling can be fun: new scenery, new place to sleep, new food to try, new faces to see, new environment to explore, it also comes with its share of hassle and stress like, disturbed sleep, dry skin, dehydration, swelling ankles and tired eyes to mention just a few. Especially, when traveling through different time zones, it can really throw your internal body clock out of sync, causing jet lag. For example, did you know that flying from New York to Los Angeles alone, you travel through three different time zones? Crazy, right? So for me, in order to alleviate the travel fatigue, I make sure to prepare beforehand with a few essentials that ensure a much calmer and relaxing getaway. Here are some of the things that are always in my traveling pouch (really liking this one) that I bring and use to help alleviate jet lag.

1. First thing first, I make sure to buy me a vitamin juice or water to drop in my airborne tablet (a staple in my house and my travel bag) as soon as I pass security check. It serves a triple purpose: a) it boosts your immune system to help ward off all the recirculated germs of all the sneezing and hacking that inevitably happens once the door of the plane closes shut, b) keeps you hydrated and, c) causes you to leave your seat more often (to hit the bathroom) which is good for circulation, hence, keeping those feet and joints from swelling up.

2. Scented hydration. My favorite one is rosewater which I use to keep my skin and hair hydrated and to freshen that stale dry airplane air around me. Additionally, as the dryness can cause cracked lips, it's essential to keep lips moisturized. I alternatively use this one or this one. I have other favorites listed here.

3. A good book to read (thinking of this one for this upcoming trip) is always a great mental distractor. It keeps me from remembering that I essentially am in a germ incubator in the sky. {Insert the face with the medical mask emoji here}. Better yet, depending on the mood, sometimes I just put on some tunes using these earphones, slip my feet into these moisturizing calming cuddly socks , put on a sleeping mask and cover myself with my scented scarf (mentioned in #4) for a couple of hours of zzzzz's.

4. To allay flight anxiety, I normally pack a couple of chamomile tea bags with me, or sometimes I create my own calming blend by combining 2 drops of lavender oil and 2 drops of geranium oil in 1 tablespoons of water in a spray bottle to spray on the scarf that I use to cover myself on the plane.

5. Lastly, I rely on the following 4 scented essential oils to help me stay awake when I arrive and get a good night's sleep at the end of my day. How, you ask? Well, it's been proven and I can attest to this fact that using a combination of natural essential oils in a bath or shower can help you adapt to a new time zone. More details on that can be found here on page 399.

A) To stay awake during the day
In your shower gel, mix in 2 drops of peppermint oil + 2 drops of eucalyptus oil.

B) For a good night's sleep 
In a different shower gel jar, add 2 drops of geranium oil + 2 drops of lavender oil.

Essential-Oils-to-Help-with-Jet-Lag-Aromatherapy-Travel-Tips

The beauty about these essential oils is that they come in very small bottles that can be carried in your purse or if you're into flamingos, this one is a great choice. But if you're like me, it's most likely that you'd prepare both shower gels ahead of time at home - labeling each bottle 'day shower gel and night shower gel' to keep in your travel pouch. How about you? Do you have any other travel tips to keep yourself from feeling jet lagged after a long vacation or business trip? Please share in the comment box below the post.


1.15.2016

Grateful Moments


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1. With every angle, these reflective mirror views are always surprising - leaving me deeply grateful always. 

Not much is planned for this weekend, except I'm having one of my much more mature friends come over this evening for some girl bonding time, which I’m really looking forward to. I’ve been in the most laid-back-hibernating mood lately. You, too?!

Ballet-Dancer-Photo
2. Everything about this picture in our office/guest bathroom brings me this sense of calmness.

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3. I have an affinity for pretty vintage jars and vases and have slowly garnered a small fun and interesting collection that I feel give our home soul.

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4. A monogram hand towel is such a simple touch, but yet makes such a statement + that afternoon sunshine streaming through the window makes winter days so much better.

Wise-Quote-People-Inspire-You-or-They-Drain-you-Pick-them-Wisely
5. This office/guest bathroom sink vignette with an important reminder.

P.S. If you missed my latest favorite links around the web post, you might want to take a look at it. There some fun facts about New York, the latest heel that made my wish list aaaand a life changing recipe. 

May your weekend be as peaceful as a stream 
on a mountain peak. ;-)

1.14.2016

January's Favorite Links Around The Web

Favorite-Links-Around-The-Web-100-best-photographs-without-photoshop-Nautical-Stripes-Pump

1. Forty-one random facts about New York that will blow your mind. My mind was blown at fact number one. Say what?!! 

2. This mock neck sweater in that blush color had me at hello! What makes it even more of a sweeter deal (besides it being one of my favorite colors to wear during the grey days of winter) - it's 40% off.

3. The moment I saw this elegant nautical stripes pump, I instantly thought of pairing it with this blush and grey color combo. It would be like the exclamation point to the outfit. BAM!

4. Some of the best advice on how to turn jealousy and envy into motivation. An anomaly that always gets me, as I'm always befuddled at why seeing/perceiving the success of others, including your own friends wouldn't make you feel genuinely happy for them.

5. This holiday village in Russia was one of my most favorite out of the 100 best photographs ever taken without Photoshop. I envisioned myself living in one of those gingerbread houses. {insert the heart eyes emoji here.}

6. I don't have as much of an aversion for cauliflower as my hubby does, and knowing its health benefits, I do try to incorporate it into our diet every so often. This week, I decided to try this recipe version.  All I have to say is, it felt as if I discovered gold! That's how good it was. It was so good that the hubby, after eating the whole thing, asked if it was quinoa. Hooray! I don't think I'll ever go back to eating this not-so-loved vegetable any other way again.


1.13.2016

WORDS OF WISDOM WEDNESDAY


Words.of.Wisdom.Wednesday.Oscar_Wilde.Quote.Value.Your.Worth

With the beginning of a new year again, comes a great opportunity to set oneself up for success instead of failure, by preventing the wrong habits and relationships from getting in the way of accomplishing set goals. I'm a quick learner in general, but slow in letting go of certain friendships, as my loyalty and unusual soft heart can never seem to allow me to. Thankfully, by the tail end of last year, I was forced to finally learn the importance of adopting the above admonishment. Intending to end this year without the same regrets, I now have accepted that it is imperative to completely let go of those I have to beg for attention and that want me around only when they need something, and keep the genuine ones that value me, know my worth and always leave me feeling good. It will make me a better person for it; one that will be able to reciprocate the same back to those few and others that cross my path. It's true, we might not be able to control those who walk into our life, but we sure can control who we choose to keep in our life. Always surround yourself with genuine people who impact your life in a positive way - though few they may be. Your mental and physical health will thank you for it.

1.08.2016

Grateful Moments

How did your first week of the fresh new year go? So far I'm happy how mine began on a good stride. Got to accomplish a lot of what I intended to get done this week, like getting to tick off one of my must-get-done tasks of taking passport photos and renewing my passport finally. Phew, that was a close call to the expiration date. And the first great news we got this year, is that one of our very best friends is getting married and honored us with the privilege to be a part of the bridal party. I'm not sure if it has to do with the shift of some new perspectives, but I'm happy with how things went this week thus far.

Also, I don't know about you, but I feel as if January is going at a normal pace and I sure hope that it continues this way so I can have time to crack out all the ideas I have in the crux of my brain - not only for my online corner space here, but also with my life in general. In the meantime, here are some of the things that made me happy and felt grateful for this week.

1. This lovely mid-week break after a busy day that was just right.

2. My first healthy vegetable frittata breakfast meal of the year got a little too much heat under the broiler, but was still edible and was a nice departure from my usual quiches.

3. Very grateful for one of the best 'thought pattern changing' quotes I've read thus far.

4. Made some homemade apple chips for the first time. Attempting at a healthier diet for the rest of the year.

5. All I've been dreaming about lately, is living in a 1920's bungalow or cottage in California. I'm blaming that burning desire on the icy cold temps that finally sprung on us after a very balmy December.

1.07.2016

Blurred Lines


Saks-Fifth-Avenue-Pencil-Skirt-Nordstrom-Stripe-Blazer-Zac-Posen-Bag-Bronze-Lip-Color

One question I get asked most of the time is, "how long does it take me to figure out an outfit to wear?" and the answer is always the same: not long at all. It takes me perhaps the most, a good fifteen to thirty minutes tops from opening my closet to getting dressed and no, I don't set out my clothes the night before either. As I've mentioned on previous posts, most of the outfit choices that I select are dictated by the mood that I wake up feeling that day or by the weather outside. This choice here is no different. Without much thought, this look turned out giving a nod to my professional corporate 9-5 days. But I like how the pop of color of this 'old faithful' warm textured knit rust color turtleneck, breaks the seriousness of the ensemble. I opted for a matching lip in bronze, which I complemented with my Zac Posen structural tonal satchel for a jolt of personality.

Saks-Fifth-Avenue-Pencil-Skirt-Nordstrom-Stripe-Blazer-Zac-Posen-Bag-Bronze-Lip-Color-Houndstooth-Two-Tone-Heels

Saks-Fifth-Avenue-Pencil-Skirt-Nordstrom-Stripe-Blazer-Zac-Posen-Bag-Bronze-Lip-Color-Houndstooth-Two-Tone-Heels

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Saks-Fifth-Avenue-Pencil-Skirt-Nordstrom-Stripe-Blazer-Zac-Posen-Bag-Bronze-Lip-Color-Houndstooth-Two-Tone-Heels

Saks Fifth Avenue Pencil Skirt (old - similar here) | Sweater Turtleneck (old - similar here) | Nordstrom Stiped Blazer (similar herehere and here) | Two-Tone Houndstooth heels (super old - similar here and here) | Lip Color (similar here and here) | Zac Posen Satchel (seen here) | Necklace (similar here and here)

Happy almost Friday! Here's to hoping your week back to work started out on a good foot for you in this new year.

1.04.2016

A SURE WAY TO REACH YOUR GOALS


2016.Goals.Vision.Board.Sketchbook.Inspiration.Board

For my very first post of 2016, I want to quickly write about a topic that I'm sure is at the top of most people's list with the start of the new year - goals. Instead of setting myself up for failure at the beginning of every year with an endless list of resolutions that I know realistically, I will lose the willpower to keep with the first obstacle thrown my way, I prefer to use a simple method that ensures success when it comes to realizing my goals. The sure way I've found to reach goals is by having them fixed right in front of my eyes on a vision board to see what they are every day. Having a vision board of image representations and quotes of things I'm trying to achieve has proved to be one of the most powerful tools in keeping me focused and motivated throughout the year. This inspirational, tangible, illustration of those goals strengthens my resolve and stimulates my willpower to see them through. The only difference this year, is that I plan on following this more fully and improving on my 2015 goals.

My current vision board is made out of an old picture on canvas (which no longer fits our decor style) that I flipped over and inserted several sheets of cork board in the back. Using push pins, I now tack away on there my favorite fashion magazine cutouts, quotes, sweet sentimental cards from friends and whatever inspires me. And if there's no room for a vision board, you can always use a sketchbook (as I did days before blogging and Pinterest) to write in or glue any favorite inspirational photos.