Simple Indulgence: No. 16

Bagel with Fig

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I’m not a big fan of bagels but when it smothered in cream cheese that’s another story. That deadly combo welcomes unwanted muffin tops, and I don’t mean the baker’s delight.  However, a few days ago G picked up a couple bagels on his way home from a jog.  But, he forgot the cream cheese!  I tried to find an alternative, but we didn’t have any jams, except some apricot and fig preserves.  I slapped on some fig and the combination ended up being an unexpected delight.  For a healthy alternative to cream cheese, you can always count on fig or other fruit preserves to enjoy this simple indulgence.

Have a nice weekend everyone.  Until then, I will see you on the blog!

Amazingly Chic & Affordable

All these chic and amazing items are under $100!!!

To get shopping details click on the images

P.S. I’ve got some SALE ALERTS!!!
ANN TAYLOR is having 40% OFF  SALE styles!
GAP is having a TOP SECRET savings!Use code SECRET to see how much you will save!
LOFT is having 60% OFF all SALE styles!
OLD NAVY is having 30% OFF regular-priced merchandise + 20% OFF Sale merchandise!  Use Code ENJOY
REBBECA MINKOFF is having their SEMI-ANNUAL EVENT Sale – UP to 70% OFF!

Before and After Dining Room Makeover

Before and After Dining room 2

I’ve been meaning to put this post up but got sidetracked.  This is another room that we also renovated.  Our dining room had Spanish tiles and that 70’s ceiling fan (before picture) when we first bought it.  It wasn’t our style, but we left it at that and just slapped on a fresh coat of paint and placed a set of hand me down dining furniture and called it “our dining room”.

We did very little to transform this room; the Spanish tiles were replaced with wood flooring and the ceiling fan with a chandelier.  The dining table and the buffet were bought during a sale event at WorldMarket.  The dining chairs were also purchased at a sale event but from Joss & Main.  The rug is originally from WorldMarket but is over 10 yrs old.  This rug has been everywhere and never really had a home until now.   You can add a little personality and create a modern, living look by mixing old and discounted new furniture without the high cost.

I know I sound old fashion, but I love eating in a dining room because it is a tradition worth keeping.  We have an eat-in area, where we normally congregate for breakfast and lunch, but our nightly dinners are in this room and we love it!  Yes, a dining room renovation does give you a bang for your buck but not as big as the joy of family gathering….priceless.

dining room-9dining room-7Before and After Dining room 4

Before and After Dining roomdining room-3dining room-2-2

 

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Spring Capsule Collection: Outfit Remix #10

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Welcome to week 10 of my Spring Capsule Collection Outfit Remix series.  I can’t believe we are in mid-April already and I’m just starting to soak in the beautiful weather here in LA.  Spring is my second favorite season of the year following fall.  As mentioned here, I had a shopping relapse and bought this floral dress.

As a busy mom of twin boys, I love wearing clothes that are easy to put on, move freely but still look stylish and chic without worrying about dirt or grease.  This dress fits the bill.  I absolutely LOVE the material.  Although it is made of polyester (not a big fan of polyester btw) but the organza material looks and feel expensive.  The length was quite long for my height so I had to cut 6 inches off; didn’t have to hem…just cut and wear!  I chose not to wear the scarf that came with the dress because it overwhelmed my petite frame!

Overall, this dress is affordable but expensive looking. I can wear this dress to a wedding, brunch, theatre, movie, or just alfresco dining.  You can wrap yourself with this scarf for that romantic look or go casual chic with this denim jacket.  And, need I say more about these sandals from the collection?  Versatile, comfortable, and stylish…a keeper and many more outfit remix contributions for months if not years to come!

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ChicWish Dress| Fendi Denim Baguette (old, similar style)| Stuart Weitzman Sandals (love these under $80)| JCrew Hat| Baublebar Necklaces| Ann Taylor Belt
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This week I’m linking with these lovely ladies: Visible MondayStyle to Inspire, Monday Mingle, Shoe and Tell Fashion Linkup, A Touch of Tartan, ReasonstoDressStylish Saturday, All About You, Dallas StyleThe Pleated Poppy, Because Shanna Said So, Katherine’s Corner, MixMatchFashion and Mid Week Muse Link-Up.

EcoTools Complexion Collection

Happy Monday everyone!  Hope your weekend was treating you well.  If you are following along on Instagram you definitely got a feed full of our family’s mini vacation.  I can’t wait to share an upcoming post about this along with some big news announcement.  So stay tuned.  Now onto today’s post..

I was asked to participate in the #EcoInspire, sponsored by Paris Presents, Inc. Although I have been compensated, all opinions are my own.

I have a combination of cheap and expensive brushes; all 3 in total. Two for my eyes and one for my blush.  They were purchased years ago. I bought them based on my needs. Better tools better results. Never once (of all things out there) had I thought about buying makeup brushes that were earth friendly. Was there any back then? I can’t recall. Makeup brushes are not something that I often replace…there’s just no need to. When I heard about an earth friendly company called EcoTools launching a new line of brushes designed to aide in common skincare concerns such as fine lines, spot coverage, under eye circles, and oily skin, it piqued my interest.

The Goods:

EcoTools Complexion Collection: Correcting Concealer, Eye Perfecting, Skin Perfecting, and Mattifying Finish brushes.

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The Claim:

EcoTools is launching a new line of brushes, the Complexion Collection, designed to aide in common skincare concerns such as fine lines, spot coverage, under eye circles, and oily skin.

Correcting Concealer:  Perfecting to precisely target imperfections for an even, radiant finish.  use with liquid or powder concealer.

Eye Perfecting:  Smooth and reduce the appearance of fine lines and under eye circles.  Use with creams, moisturizers or concealers.

Skin Perfecting:  Boost the benefits of your BB/CC cream and tinted moisturizer with this hand-cut, angled edge brush ideal for precise coverage around nose and under eyes.

Mattifying Finish:  Help reduce oil and shine for a fresh look that lasts all day.  Use with pressed or loose powder

Mama’s Take:

Just like every woman I want the flawless skin look without piling on a lot of makeup.  For years, I’ve been using my fingers to apply my foundation and concealer.  It’s a hard habit to break.  Overall, I love the Complexion Collection brushes.  But my favorite would have to be  the Skin Perfecting Brush!  This brush was so easy to navigate on my face.  Every droplet of my BB cream plus face oil was applied evenly, giving the appearance of a dewy flawless skin look.  I didn’t need to apply foundation after, and with a swipe of a lipstick I can confidently walk out the door.

In my humble opinion, this brush is the hero product of the collection.  It is available in the store (Walgreens) while the other 3 brushes are available on Walgreens.com.  I love using products from companies like EcoTools who cares about the environment and Earth Month.  EcoTools will make a $1.00 donation to Global Green USA for every Complexion Collection brush sold (up to $100,000).  These #EcoInspire brushes are not only eco-friendly but also very affordable.  You can purchase the brushes individually starting at $4.99 or the Complexion Collection for $24.99.  If you are looking for brushes that will apply evenly with little effort to give that flawless skin look while being environmentally friendly then look no further than   EcoTools.

Simple Indulgence: No. 15

Breakfast in Bed

Breakfast in BedImage Source

I’m not a breakfast girl.  All I need is a good cup of coffee to get me through the day.  Ever since I’ve been with G breakfast became a morning ritual.  G believes in eating a well-balanced 3 meals a day!  He’s been the breakfast chef since then.  For the past few months, our schedules have been crazy and I would often skip having breakfast with the family.  The boys would wake up late and I would be on conference calls since the crack of dawn.

So a few days ago on my day off I decided to enjoy this simple indulgence. G surprised me with a cup of coffee and a well-balanced meal for breakfast.  I’m not a big fan of eating ANYTHING in bed so this breakfast was unexpected.

The meal and the ambience really set the mood for the entire day.  I felt relaxed, energized and most of all pampered.  It was such a simple gesture that made me feel spoiled in indulgence.   I hope you too can carve out some time to surprise your partner with breakfast in bed or even try it yourself.  Have a great weekend everyone.  Until next week, I will see you on the blog!

Amazingly Chic & Affordable: All Under $100

All these chic and amazing items are under $100!!!

To get shopping details click on the images

P.S. I’ve got some SALE ALERTS!!!
ANN TAYLOR is having 40% OFF  Entire Purchase!
GAP is having The Best Dressed Event. Up to $30 off Women’s Styles + up to $15 off Kids & Baby Styles
LOFT is having Friends & Family 40% OFF on Everything!
French Connection is having 30% OFF EVERYTHING!  Use Code FC30SS

Pearls are ALWAYS Appropriate

“Pearls are always appropriate” – Jackie Kennedy

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Pearls are, indeed always appropriate because they are timeless and classic; the very essence of style. Pearls have been a treasured gem for centuries from ancient Egypt’s Cleopatra to Rome, and up until today. They are held in high demand and associated with beauty and style, worn by style icons from Grace Kelly, Coco Chanel and Jackie Kennedy to Sarah Jessica Parker.

I have always loved pearls. They add class and style to just about any outfit. I firmly believe every woman deserves to wear pearls and they should have a strand in their closet. I have a few strands that I own and almost a year ago I thought I had lost one of the strands. I found it later hidden on top of my jewelry organizer. It was out of my sight because I was too short to be able to see it!

Most people think pearls are for a special occasion, yes, they are very appropriate for weddings. You can also add pearls to any outfit but just don’t over crowd them with other pieces because pearls do the work all by themselves. This 16” strand of pearl necklace is a great example of how it can make a simple blush dress look wedding venue appropriate.

If you are looking to add a jewelry staple to your closet then take a look at Laguna Pearl’s complete pearl collection and you won’t be disappointed. Here’s a little information about why they started this business.  Laguna Pearl was created as a result of the public demand for high-quality pearl jewelry at competitive pricing. With their roots as a wholesale pearl jewelry operation, their organization has strived to cut out the middle man and sell directly to the retail jewelry consumer. They have built their online business by passing on the savings directly to consumers like us. They also have the ability to customize any product on their website.

My 16” strand of white Akoya pearl necklace (AA+ quality) from Laguna Pearl was customized to fit my style choice and I absolutely LOVE it! They indeed will be appropriate for an upcoming wedding venue in a few weeks.

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Laguna Pearls-13Laguna Pearls-10Laguna Pearls-8H&M One Shoulder Dress (they just restocked this dress and now it is almost sold out again!)| White Akoya Pearl Necklace c/o Laguna Pearl| JCrew Straw Brimmed Hat (currently on sale for 25% off) Warehouse Leather Clutch| Stuart Weitzman sandals (love these for under $80!)

 

This post is a collaboration with Laguna Pearl.  Big thank you for supporting all Mama in Heels collabs!

#BrightenUp with Boots Botanics Organic

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle internally and externally comes with a price.  We eat 90% organically at home and are continuing looking for ways to improve in healthy eating and living.   I’m really happy to see more organic food available at places like Costco, Trader Joes, and even Walmart.  That means there’s a demand to eating healthy, and that’s a good thing.  I wish the beauty industry followed suit.  There are a few out there, big or little, that heard us and do provide products that are not harmful to our bodies.  One of these companies is Boots.  When I was asked to participate in the Boots Botanics #BrightenUp campaign I didn’t even hesitate.

The Goods:

boots organic line
Currently, there are 8 products in the Botanics Organic line: Boots Botanics Organic Hydrating Day Cream, Boots Botanics Organic Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm, Boots Botanics Organic Super Balm, Boots Botanics Organic Rosewater Toning Spritz, Boots Botanics Organic Facial Oil, Boots Botanics Organic Hydrating Eye Cream, Boots Botanics Organic Softening Cleanser,Boots Botanics Organic Lip Balm, and Boots Botanics Organic Body Wash.

The Claim:

Botanics offers natural and affordable skincare and cosmetics, capturing the beauty boosting power of plants to create effective skincare solutions.  Each of the Botanics ranges features a unique plant extract, authenticated in conjunction with The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, ensuring that every formula developed contains high quality active plant extracts.  All products are free of parabens, mineral oils, paraffin waxes, SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) and SLES (Sodium Laureth Sulfate), replacing man-made chemicals with natural ingredients where possible.  The incredibly popular Botanics Organic range, is rich in Organic Rosehip to nourish and boost skin’s radiance.

Mama’s Take:

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I immediately fell in love with these products! While the affordable prices are the main factor it was the ingredients and the texture of the products that won my heart.  Although I love these products, but my favorite has to be the Botanics 100% Organic Facial Oil.  The facial oil was better than expected and it is the first mass market facial oil to lock in moisture for up to eight hours.  The oil was not greasy at all and my skin soaked it in immediately.  No breakouts and left me with a glowing dewy complexion all day long!  I use this product with my night cream and Retinal serum.  I also started mixing the oil with my BB Cream during the day for that dewy coverage.  My skin beams when the lights hit….LOVE it!  I would highly recommend this to any skin type. I have hyper sensitive skin and my face did not break out nor was it on fire.

We can now maintain a healthy organic lifestyle inside and out thanks to Boots, and Duane Reede/Walgreens!  With Earth Day a couple weeks away why not try out Boots Botanics Organic line where the affordable prices range from $8.39 – $15.79 per product, and for the entire month of April use code BOGO50 on Botanics at Walgreens/Duane Reede currently carry in store in the metropolitan area in New York.

Disclosure: I was asked to participate in the #BrightenUp, sponsored by Boots at Duane Reade. Although I have been compensated, all opinions are my own.

Spring Capsule Collection: Outfit Remix #9

Happy Monday everyone!  Hope your weekend was treating you well.

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Welcome to week 9 of the Spring Capsule Collection remix.  This week I’m mixing the linen sweater and pixie pants with one of my favorite pair of pumps (super comfortable!), structured bag, and an oversized blazer.    I wore this look for a quick dinner with hubby followed by our appointment with our CPA.  I can wear this outfit to any office setting (yes, even the stuffy ones!) and feel confident in my own skin.

So let’s talk about this Reed Krakoff bag for a moment.  It’s probably my second best investment in terms of handbag.  First, it’s the perfect size.  Roomy enough where I can put a lot of stuff.  It is also extremely lightweight that I can schlepp around town with my DSLR camera (G hates carrying the camera!).  The bag also has a thin strap that you can wear over your shoulders or as crossbody…a major plus for a busy mom like me!  I saw this bag at Saks not too long ago but couldn’t see myself paying so much $$$ for it.  BUT, when I found out it was on a major sale (50% off) I pulled the trigger!!!

Speaking of a major sale, I was able to snatch this Vanessa Bruno blazer several months ago for $75 NWT (retail $730).  The blazer was already 85% off and I had been eyeing it for months.  I had been shopping for a similar blazer like this since my not so successful attempt at getting the Isabel Marrant X HM collaboration blazer back in 2013.  When I saw this blazer at The Real Real I knew I found it but still had to debate whether I should spend $130 for the blazer even though it was NWT.  Anyhow, I waited for their 40-50% off promotion and then snatched it.  This is one of the strategies that I use to score designer items at steep discounts, which was one of the questions Deborah from Fabulous After 40 had asked me.  If you have not read the Style Blazer feature you can click here to get to know me better :)

I have worn this blazer a few times but never featured it on the blog until now.  It’s such a versatile jacket and I know I can wear this for years to come.  Not only was I able to mix this jacket for week 9 of the Spring Capsule Collection remix series but I know I can mix it several more times before the heat wave hits LA again.

capsule-2-2capsule-5capsule 9 3capsule-6Vanessa Bruno Blazer (sold out, similar style for $65!)|MANGO Linen Sweater| Old Navy Pixie Pants ($32 plus 25% off right now!)| Steve Madden Pumps| Reed Krakoff Bag|Baublebar Cuff| Forever21 Choker (old, similar style)
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This week I’m linking with these lovely ladies: Visible MondayStyle to Inspire, Monday Mingle, Shoe and Tell Fashion Linkup, A Touch of Tartan, ReasonstoDressStylish Saturday, All About You, Dallas StyleThe Pleated Poppy, Because Shanna Said So, Katherine’s Corner, MixMatchFashion and Mid Week Muse Link-Up.