Crazy Beauty Routines for Busy Moms

This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with PONDS® and Latina Bloggers Connect. But the story is all mine and somewhat humorous. Read on. 

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In light of the holidays, POND’S® has partnered with the Rockettes to show you their routines and not just their dance but their beauty routines. Here, I’m sharing with you my routine. Hold on. It is about to get real. 

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I’m tired. It has been a long day. I start the day repeating a million times that we have to hurry or we will be late for school. My eldest just stares and smiles. She doesn’t move and on purpose. She thinks it is funny. The baby is throwing a fit in his high chair while I am walking around applying BB cream in the kitchen and serving up breakfast. I am a master multitasker. My husband is calling from the stairs asking if I prefer his brown shoes or the black. I say brown. He asks if I’m sure. I say yes.  He reminds me that I am a stylist, this is my job so I remind him that he should not question me. He asks again. I don’t move and on purpose. By the end of this so called conversation, my blush and lipstick is applied all sans mirror because after 13 years as a make up artist who can’t right and in the kitchen no less. I rush to the bathroom to fill my brows and apply mascara. That is it for my “everyday” look. It is all I have time for. The kids are bundled up, my heels are on (barely) and everyone is out the door off to face the day after a thousand kisses and a million “I love yous” . Typical days for me do not exist and mornings like these are my only constant. 

My home life can be hectic. But I have a routine. In the car, on the drive home, I’m already removing my make up with cleansing towelettes. I’ve used generic ones in the past and in the winter, I’ve found they can be quite drying. So I tried POND’S® Towelettes this time to remove my make up and refresh my face. I get my second wind as I walk through the door but it doesn’t last. I crash early and I wipe my face again while in bed with another cleansing wipe and hydrate life back into my skin with Rejuveness, their hydrating anti-wrinkle cream that reduces fine lines within 2 weeks. When I passed the 30 threshold, fine lines were not invited to the party. Finally, stress free sleep with stress free skin.

How was your day?

POND’S® Towelettes and POND’S® Rejuveness can be found at Walmart Stores.

How to Unify Your Dining and Living Space

Paint. That’s it. That is the end of this post. Kidding. Read on. 

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I’ve been working on my dining room and finally got around to finding the perfect color for the focal wall. Then I went on and painted the wall behind the bookshelf the same color to unify the space. This wall is part of the formal living area, that my daughter tells people only adults can go in. She is right. I want no little hands up in here leaving a trail of toys and snot all over my nice things. That is what the rest of the house is for. Go put your greasy chicken fingers marks all over the other side of the house, on the other side of the baby gate. My kids have no chill, one would wipe her hands on my new drapes while the other chews on my new chesterfield and I can’t get mad because they are cute. Yup, I’m that mom.

Me: “Did you just put stickers on my wall?”

My Child: “Yes, mom. It looks pretty. I am decorating.” 

Me: “Well, it does look pretty.”

And that is why I cannot have nice things. DR5

Here is the dining room wall. I bought wallpaper to make these beautiful silver print stripes but since I’ve already bought things to hang on this wall, it maybe too much so I’m going to leave it a solid color. DR4

And this is the view from my Christmas tree. Look at Santa on the floor. One of those kids past the baby gate. No chill I tell you. DR3

I ordered these curtain panels for the dining room. They are 96″ inches and because they are faux silk (and I bought them on sale), they were only $33 per panel. It seems like a lot but the length and material makes it worth it. I actually bought 4 panels so that I can continue to unify the space by using the same panels in the living room. What I do not have are curtain rods. Whomp, whomp. DR2

These are the mirrors I plan on hanging on the focal wall. I bought 3 for $11 each at Walmart. They look more expensive than they really were, problem is that I have no idea how on earth to hang them. Any ideas, please send my way. DR1

And these are the candle holders (I have 2) that I bought forever ago for the entry area but they will look better here I think. It is still up in the air. 

As far as the paint, I cannot tell you the color. You see, my husband wanted bold while I was still debating between bold and just dark. We got this loud teal sample that was close in color with the curtain panels but I wasn’t feeling it. Everyone who saw it was loving it though. Now, old me would have gone with what everyone else liked and hated it because I would not repaint it. But grown up me knows that this is my house. Period. So I grabbed the paint that I used in my office which looked almost black (remind me to finish that room and show you), and mixed in a soft grey. It was still dark and missing something so I mixed in the teal sample that everyone loved. I ended up with a dark color that has a mix of blue and green undertones depending on the light. And guess what? I love it. I also put up my 99 cent painting in the living room ( get a glimpse of that room). I bought it off eBay from an Israeli artist years ago and the shipping was like $20. Cheap. I did have to get a custom frame so I went to Michael’s and got one that was on clearance. Custom framing is expensive but after all the discounts it came out to $120. So for $140.99, I have real art in my living room that no one else has. 

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Hopefully next week I will have more to show you but it’s the holidays and I have to finish this room stat and wrap these gifts. GRRRRR. 

Being Chic at Home

 

Being Chic at Home

‘Tis the season for entertaining and as a woman decorating her formal dining room (new update next week, we have curtains!), hosting a gathering has been on my mind a lot. In fact, I’ve been reading At Home with Madame Chis: Becoming a Connoisseur of Daily Life by Jennifer L. Scott.  So it isn’t just hosting but things that make me want to do more at home, stay more at home and not in the way that I do now as a homebody, but as someone who loves her space. Life is surely different now that I make it a point to light candles and buy fresh flowers at the local grocer to simply do laundry. But in a bigger way, I am exciting to share this home that I love. Here are a few things I’ve made a point of having in my home to make entertaining in this new dining area, whether it is a formal dinner for two, or a casual setting with handful of friends. 

Porcelain Platter | Napkin Rings  | Straws | Napkins | Champagne Glasses 

In my new dining space I plan:

To have serving platters that aren’t a set as long as they are beautiful individually. To have linen napkins and bold rings to match, the kind no one dares wipe their hands with until you say, “it’s a dinner party for Christ’s sake!”. To toast at any opportunity and to drink anything from a champagne glass whether it’s just water or sparkling sake from Social Enjoyments. Accessories for a bar cart or bar shelves just because they are pretty. And music, fresh flowers and smiles because obviously…life should be simply that grand. 

Modest Sophistication Inspired by the “Slums”

This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with Lionsgate and Latina Bloggers Connect. Words and ideas are my own.

DSC02466-1 Cantinflas DVD inspired look DSC02464-1

sweater: Banana Republic | skirt: F21 | heels: BCBG | necklace: Iristocracy

I remember the last time I went to Puerto Rico to visit my family, I stayed in my grandfather’s room. It was only the second time in my life that I saw the inside of that room and the first time staying there. After he passed, I learned more about his life as everyone was so open to share their memories, mostly my father talked about how much my grandfather enjoyed Cantinflas. There in a box at the top of the closet in the farthest corner of that room was a stack of VHS movies. All movies starring the beloved character, Cantinflas.

I knew of the actor and his movies but I never paid much attention when they were on, to my mother’s howls of laughter from the other room, or even when my grandfather was with us and he sat in his chair all day watching his movies, I never bothered to sit down and watch. Now as the story of Mario Moreno’s beloved character Cantinflas comes to the big scene (and now DVD) and we see the story of this legend in a different light, do I finally understand. This man was hilarious, naturally and honestly. The movie starts at the beginning of what was to become a legendary career in 1931. As a stylist the first thing I noticed was the wardrobe. The dark, gloomy colors, the tweed vests, suspenders, the fact that even in what they referred to as the “slums”, people were better dressed than some of the affluent neighborhoods in the biggest cities today. There was a sophisticated modesty and an air of simplicity that I admired and something that I’ve been trying to emulate into my own personal style as of late. I’ve been adding more of a 30′s wave to my hair, softer makeup to go with a more grown up feel. Don’t get me wrong, momma still loves her leather boots and rockera vibe but this look is just easy, carefree and feminine.

What styles are you exploring?

My Holiday Gift Guide

Holiday Gift Guide

My husband and I are hit or miss when it comes to gift giving. Some years we do and others we don’t. This year, we may and just in case I’ve put together this little guide of things I am loving at the moment from the most amazing night time skincare from Korres to fabulous champagne glasses and cocktail dresses for more at home entertaining. 

Under $50

SunglassesScarf | Pumps | Earrings | Bracelet

Under $100

White Dress | Dress | Skincare | Champagne Glasses | Passport Cover

Under $250

Headphones | Watch | Clutch | Earrings | Skirt | Heels

 What’s on your wish list? 

#BetterForYou At Home Hair Color: Going Natural

This post is brought to you by Madison Reed, the revolutionary new hair color that’s better for your hair. Click here to learn more about Madison Reed. 

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We’ve been friends for a while so you know that shortly before I got pregnant with my son, I attempted to go lighter. Ignore how blurry I look, I needed this picture to be big enough for you to see the color. It was cheap at home dye and though I liked the color, I needed serious deep conditioning treatments. After my daughter started asking why my hair was different than hers, I tried dying it back to my natural color but it faded back to a brassy mess. Rephrase that, a brassy hot mess. Enter Madison Reed. Let me tell you, that you get what you pay for. My $10 at home hair dye killed my locks and left  it looking like straw and crows were starting to follow me. No joke. At just $29.95, my new hair color is paraben, ammonia and PPD-free, and yes, there is a difference between over-processed hair and a healthier alternative.DSC02430 DSC02428 DSC02429 DSC02427

The box, unlike the inexpensive version we find at the drugstore, was customized for me.* After having a quick online questionnaire, I was given a recommendation of colors. I picked a completely different one (the darkest black available) and was advised against it. I shrugged but went with their recommendation anyway, thankfully because we left to my own devices, I get straw. Aside from detailed step by step instructions, when the box arrived this is what I got:

Gloves- 2 pairs of thick black gloves. One to add the dye to my hair and the 2nd pair to rinse. I always got color everywhere with the other brand and their ‘yanky’ gloves. The worst and yes, I am aware that yanky is not a real word but have your read my blog? I make up words and yet, you understand me.

Cap- To cover your hair. Again the quality of this versus that of the other brand…HUGE difference. Caps for emphasis.

Barrier Cream & Wipe- You mean I don’t have to saturated my hair line with pore clogging petroleum jelly and try to wipe my edges with a baby wipe? Because that was a fail if their ever was one.

Color- Because obviously.

Shampoo & Conditioner- Lets talk about this. Most at home kits will provide you with a conditioner but not a shampoo. My hair is curly, at times unruly so conditioning is a must especially on the ends but I’m very particular about what shampoos and conditioners touch my locks. First and foremost, sulfate and paraban free. Curly heads rejoice. Second, they sell it separately so I was tempted to call them and say thanks because my hair fell in love.

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After coloring, blow drying and a little curling action, my hair was shiny, soft, healthier and finally back to my natural color. Finally my baby girls says we look like twins. Because if I am going to go natural (sans perm) I have to go back to my natural color as well, albeit without the grays. What do you guys think? 

UPDATE: If you would like to try a new color at home, get your first order of Madison Reed for 50% OFF on me! You’re welcome. 

*If you have thick or extra long hair, I recommend getting two bottles. I had to and still more affordable than a salon.

Decorating a Formal Dining Room Part 2

decorating a formal dining room

Just dropping in really quickly to update you all on my “decorating a formal dining room”. So far, all I’ve gotten are side chairs and paint samples for that focal wall back there. I’d also like to point out that I’ve hated every color. At first I wanted bold and bright as I’ve wanted to incorporate more fun color but I love muted tones so much. My husband says he prefers the bold but really, I can only go with what I love and bold just doesn’t feel right. This is a battle I will win, especially since I’m painting and doing all solo. I think I may just trust my gut on this one but we will have to wait and see next week what I come up with. 

Anywho, these chairs. I’ve wanted upholstered chairs for this room since we moved in but upholstered counter height chairs are hard to find at a decent price. I held off and found these online at Target on sale for $119 each plus free shipping. I’m surprisingly under budget with these so I may just splurge a bit on the window treatments but again, we will see. I still have a whole house to finish after all.