Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Self Reflection

Self love is vital to living a fulfilling, wonderful life. Whenever I need a pick me up, I go to Gala's blog for inspiration.  "I believe in searching for the magic in every day. Once you've trained your eye, you can’t help but delight in seeing the small & extraordinary things that surround us."  In her blog, Gala advocates for self love with a rarely unique voice.

Now that we're in the holiday season it is very easy to forget about taking care of yourself. Sometimes, you have to pick up your feet, power off your phone and think of the things you are most grateful for.
I'm going to start off by making a list of things that make me smile. I won't commit to doing this every week because that probably won't happen.

small bullet star purple  Drinking a cup of coffee, when I am in no rush, let's me plan for the future. Not 5 years into the future but what I'm cooking for dinner or my plans for the weekend. I do a lot more planning and a lot less doing which is pretty frustrating. It's a habit I'm trying to dispel.

small bullet star purple  Reading a new magazine floods my brain with outfit ideas and blog post discussions. Again, I plan but don't execute. I guess it's a work in progress.

small bullet star purple  Even when things get overwhelming, I know C is there for me with a listening ear and words of encouragement.

small bullet star purple  Nature. Trees, especially during Autumn, make me feel a sense of calm and wonder.

small bullet star purple  My curiosity constantly challenges my surroundings and makes me want to see what else the world has to offer. In return, how I can contribute to make this life better for myself as well as others.

small bullet star purple  Opportunities. I've been fortunate to have opportunities presented to me.  It's always been a matter of deciding what's right for myself.

I challenge you to create a list of things, large or small, you are grateful for. Don't let anyone determine the definition of importance. It's your list!


Thursday, November 29, 2012

My top 5 holiday looks

This my favorite time of year.  There's something about decorating my Christmas tree while listening to holiday music and sipping hot chocolate (or tea, or coffee).  It instills a feeling of comfort and hope for the future.  Below are some of my favorite holiday looks.  The holidays are perfect to add a little glitz to your usual routine.  I'm so glad it's Thursday.  I have a lot to do this weekend.  We're having a post Thanksgiving dinner with our friends at the apartment.  I'm very excited.  Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Scarlet lips
Source: google.com via Kayla on Pinterest

Sparkly eyes
Practice is key when working eye makeup

Festive nails

Velvet Dress
Source: chicwish.com via Kayla on Pinterest

Glitzy Bracelets
Source: buckle.com via Kayla on Pinterest
                       Instantly dresses up an outfit

Sunday, November 18, 2012

100 things (part 6)

Good morning and Happy Sunday! Here is part 6 of my 100 things I love series.  Check previous posts here.  I can't believe Thanksgiving is this week.  It's my favorite holiday.  I love getting together with the fam and having delicious food.  My next post will be about the things I am thankful for.  Have a lovely week!

Decorating for the holidays

Source: photoxyz.com via Raoul on Pinterest

Las Vegas

Drinking tea

Purple chairs

Wrapping gifts


Soup on a cold day


Saturday, November 17, 2012

How to Make Sofrito

I grew up watching my grandma mix aromatic ingredients including garlic, peppers, onions and other ingredients to make this yummy cooking base.  We don't use store bought sofrito in our house.  Sofrito is used when making rice, soups, beans, meats and other dishes.  Below is my own recipe I use to make sofrito.  These ingredients are just enough to make a small container.  You can easily double or triple the ingredients to make more.  Sofrito should be refrigerated if used within a week.  If you plan on using it later, place container in the freezer.

  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil 
  • 1 red pepper, cut into small chunks
  • 2 green peppers, cut into small chunks
  • 1 large onion (red or spanish), chopped
  • 1 head of garlic, peeled 
  • a large handful of cilantro or parsley
Put all ingredients in a blender and mix until it forms a creamy paste.  It should look like this: 

Below are some tasty recipes for Puerto Rican dishes using sofrito.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Ways to lower stress

"Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant." Robert Louis Stevenson.

I've been researching a few ways to lower stress levels.  Let's be honest, almost everyone suffers from stress at one point or another.  Stress is actually a good thing.  According to Elizabeth Svoboda, at nbcnews.com, the stress hormone helps regulate blood pressure and the immune system during a sudden crisis, whether a physical attack or an emotional setback.  Clearly, this is important to our body.  When the stress hormone doesn't know when to stop producing, it can become a problem.

What can we do to stop the madness??

1. Rest. Sleeping is so underrated. Good things happen for your mind, body and skin while you're asleep. If you don't get enough hours at night, try taking two 15 minute naps throughout the day.

2. Drink black tea. It's supposed to have a calming effect on your body.

3.  Hang out with people who make you happy.  Being around people who make you laugh is priceless.  Read this article on how laughter produces endorphins (feel good chemicals).

4. Get spiritual.  According to livestrong.com, meditation is a proven stress and anxiety reliever.  I'm signing up for free meditation classes in Greenwich village very soon.

5. Keep healthy habits.  Eating balanced meals, exercising and setting time aside for your hobbies are all good habits to upkeep.  All work and no play is not a recipe for success.

I'm going to try to take my own advice.  I wish you all a happy week!

What are some ways you alleviate stress?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

1920s Uproar

Source: bing.com via Kayla on Pinterest

Hello everyone!  I'm not dressing up for Halloween this year.  However, this would be my costume if I was going to.  I've always wanted to dress up as a Flapper.  Maybe because of this Charmed episode.  There's something fun about dressing up as anything you want for a day and not worrying about being judged because it's the norm for Halloween.  Have fun and experiment! =)

Flapper Costume

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Tuesday morning pep talk

We all have negative thoughts about ourselves.  It is okay to question sometimes.  However, if you do not believe in yourself, no one else will believe in you.  I absolutely love the quote above.  Negative thoughts or self doubt is usually a compilation of thoughts from others who sneaked their way into your subconscious.  Just because you think something, doesn't always mean it is true.  It is up to us alone to stay focused on the goals we set for ourselves.  Surround yourself with positive people who encourage you to move forward and better your life.  Don't let others or more importantly yourself stand in the way of your success. Remember, you alone determine what success means in your life.      


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Under the Guise

I just want to share these adorable Halloween costumes I found for children on Pinterest.  I don't have children myself, but if you do I praise you.  Having kids, especially at this time, requires a lot of work.  Showing lots of love and support, financially and emotionally to teaching values and discipline are some of the responsibilities of a parent, from my perspective.  I am looking forward to that point in my life where I am ready to take on that role.  As for now, I am working on progressing myself.  Here are some ideas for your children, nieces and nephews, etc.

Source: bbc.co.uk via Kayla on Pinterest

Source: etsy.com via Kayla on Pinterest

Source: tumblr.com via Kayla on Pinterest

Nail ideas for Halloween

October is my favorite month.  Not only because of my birthday, but Autumn happens to be my all time favorite season.  The weather is just right.  The fashion is exciting.  And it marks the start of the holiday season.  Halloween can be fun for all ages.  Trick or treating, planning an awesome costume, watching scary movies or going to a spooky bash are only some ways to enjoy the holiday.  My next few posts will consist of Halloween related things.  Enjoy!

Which is your favorite??

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Happy Friday Everyone!  I had a great date today thanks to my friend Ingrid.  We went to see The Perks of Being a Wallflower at the BAM theater.  This film was amaaazing. It truly resonated with me.  Anyone who has ever felt like they don't belong or don't feel "normal" can relate to this movie in one form or another.  The characters were charming.  The story-line is realistic and the underlying issues throughout the film engages the audience from beginning to the surprising end.  I'm not going to say anymore...go out and see it.   I warn you, it may spark Inspiration =)

P.S. Alive is my new favorite word. 

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Pinterest food for thought

Cooking is a form of art.  It gives you a chance to get creative in the kitchen.  If you're not a natural, you can turn to recipes and go from there.  If you do have a knack for cooking, improvise with what you have in the kitchen and see what happens. Check out my Pinterest board labeled Yummy in my tummy.  It has great recipes.  I have tried the following recipes with great success:

Shrimp Fried Rice:This was a hit among my friends

Fresh Strawberry Margaritas: Another hit!  

Summer Tortellini Salad: Honestly, this wasn't my fave.  Try it and let me know how it turns out.

Baked Garlic Parmesan Chicken: Picky eater (not myself) approved

What are some of your favorite recipes??

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Pretty Sparkly

Hola!  Just wanted to share some chandelier eye candy I found on Pinterest.  Chandeliers are my new obsession.  Enjoy!

Source: ababy.com via Kayla on Pinterest
Source: houzz.com via Kayla on Pinterest
Source: imgfave.com via Kayla on Pinterest

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