September, 2013

Gold Spray Paint Makes the World Go ‘Round

DIY-Coasters-prettyI have this friend, Emily, who thinks you can fix any unsightly home good with gold spray paint. And you know what? I can’t argue with that. Gold is the tits. I wanted a new coaster set because the picture coasters [you know you have at least one set hiding in your house] from my wedding weren’t quite meshing with my 2013 design sensibilities. Cue Em, “Spray paint that shit gold?” Okay, she didn’t say that at all, but it’s funnier that way. So she took my coaster holder thingy and sprayed it a matte gold. In my mind she keeps a secret locker full of gold spray paint so she’s always prepared just in case something needs a quick spraying. DIY-Paper-Coaster-GoldI removed the beer bottle labels that The Captain had lovingly removed from the picture inserts and added super cute scraps of paper I had in my paper box. Yes, yes. I have a paper box. I have a weakness for expensive and pretty paper. Such a weird obsession because honestly what do you do with a stack of pretty paper? Well I put it in my picture coasters. BOOM. 10 points to Gryffindor for using shit you already have in your house! I’m a virtual budget diy pioneer. Okay, I’m getting carried away. I shouldn’t have had that 2nd chai latte. Well here’s the finished product! Super easy, super cheap, and  looks tres chic.

Let’s Hug it Out…

carbs, goooood.I’m one of those people that could work 40+ hours, go to book club, zumba, and have 3 dinner dates planned in a week and still find time to watch tons of TV. It’s a rare gift and as I have no 40 hours to work… You get it. One of my favorite shows is Extra Virgin on the Cooking channel. It follows beloved New York native and super famous actress Debi Mazer and her dreamy Tuscan husband Gabriele Corcos. They absolutely love each other, they are so entertaining to watch, and, oh yeah, they make awesome food! Debi knows her shit. If you haven’t seen this show it’s definitely worth a peek.

People often get confused as to why I watch food shows when clearly I can’t eat a majority of the food, but truth is I LOVE Cooking Channel. I love seeing what flavors chefs put together and then work them into my own lifestyle! Nerd!!!! Yep, but I make hella good food!

On a recent episode, Debi and Gabrielle cook for Adrien Greenier. That’s right, none other than Vinnie Chase himself and to my surprise one of Debi’s creations was practically made for me, omit parmesan cheese and you have a vegan delight. Check out the recipe here! Make it gluten free by using brown rice or quinoa pasta. Make it oil free by using veggie stock in place of the oil. The perfect way to enjoy the tail end of tomato season and bonus, it has peas. Everyone loves peas. Fun fact: The Captain buys a bag of frozen peas errrry time he goes to grocery store. It’s a compulsion. Anywho, it’s delicious and your taste buds will thank me and Debi– but mostly just Debi…

So Chic…

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rocksteady-valentino-jcrew-fashion rocksteady-valentino-jcrew-fashion rocksteady-valentino-jcrew-fashionpics courtesy of Tatum Kathleen — [tee] Nordstrom Rack [skirt] J Crew, similar [necklace] Nadri [shoes] Valentino, similar

The Captain is a saint, like a real life in the flesh saint. When a friend from the diiirrrrty south called me to let me she was now working in the Atlanta Valentino store and that things were on sale I swear I heard angels sing. I was on a budget. Yes. I’m always on a budget, but since The Captain’s return I was trying to spend all our cash on doing things together, not designer shoes. Well needless to say, she sent me a pic of these RockStud sling backs and I was done. Hot Pink? Gold Studs? I mean, perfection. I reasoned that they are one of my most perfect shoe matches and that at 60% off I needed them to survive. What? I did. I wore them around my house with sweatpants the day they came in the mail. They make me so happy paired with my good ole standby No. 2 pencil skirt from J Crew. This is my kind of dressing up. And let’s take a minute to chat about my most favorite agate bracelet ever. I bought it at a bazaar in Egypt and love that thing more than diamonds. Seriously, diamonds. It’s a rare occasion that I wear heels or dress up at all, but with these shoes and that skirt it’s totally worth it. Oh and I know what you are thinking… Get outta the damn road!!!

Women Who Rock

Ann Bio Pic for RA PacketThis is something that I’m really excited about for the blog! I’ve met some super cool chicks over the years who are all brilliant in their chosen field and I want to share their awesomeness with you! So every few weeks I’ll be sharing a quick interview to break down their beauty/style/food philosophies! Fun, right!? I’m starting this week with the ah-mazing Ann Duke, owner of Serenity Skincare in San Diego. I met Ann through a close friend who knew that I need a skintervention and I’ve had the pleasure of getting regular facials from her for almost a year. I have to say not only is she a genius, she’s one of the most loving and friendly people I’ve ever had the pleasure to meet.

What drew you to a career in skincare? I was in corporate America for 13 years as a consultant for Sales, Customer Service and Presentations Skills workshops. I found that I didn’t have control of my time or income. I wanted to have my own business and wanted to find something to do that I loved. I read “What Color is Your Parachute” and one of the things she recommended was to look at what you read for fun. I realized the stack of magazines next to my bed, were all about make-up and skincare not how to run a better training class, so I went back to school and never looked back. I worked for other people for about 7 years to learn the business then opened my own in 1998. Now, I see clients and am back to doing workshops for one of my product companies, teaching other estheticians our product line and treatments. I’ve come full circle!

How would you describe your personal skin care philosophy? Cleanse, correct and nourish. Every skin condition needs to incorporate these steps. Most people over moisturize and under cleanse. Use a clean, white washcloth each time you wash your face. This way you make sure all the make-up is removed.

What’s your best advice for ladies with acne? Besides coming to see you ;) Acne is a hereditary condition that is comprised of: 1. Skin cells that don’t want to slough off  2. Thick sticky oil 3. Inflammation 4. Hormones 5. Inability to fight off the p-acne bacteria

We can’t do much about hormones, but you can use products that exfoliate the skin, reduce inflammation, kill bacteria and break up the oil. Sometimes people over-treat acne, overstimulation creates more inflammation which can exacerbate the problem. So it’s important to balance clearing, drying products with hydrating (not clogging) soothing products to help heal skin. Ice is a great tool for underground, papules. Placing ice on the area for 5 minutes helps reduce the inflammation and lessens the size of the bump.

What is the biggest mistake women make when it comes to their skin? They don’t remove their make-up, they forget to reapply sunscreen, and they think sunscreen means they can stay in the sun all day with no repercussions.

If you could only use one product for the rest of your days, what would you choose? Rhonda Allison Daytime Defense, it’s an all-natural 30 UVA/UVB sun protector. 90% of aging comes from sun damage. This man was a truck driver and the right side of the picture is where he had sun exposure from the driver side of his window.

RA sun damage trucker-damage-face_web_620x350Anyone else thinking it’s time to reapply sunscreen?? I, too, love the Rhonda Allison Daytime Defense. It’s a great product that protects, but doesn’t break out my skin! Make sure to check back Wednesday for an  outfit post!

My Food Philosophy

IMG_3414I get asked A LOT about the way I eat. It seems to equally intrigue and offend people, like my dietary beliefs have any great effect on their daily lives? People are constantly apologizing to me when they eat meat in front of me. Some because a. they think I’m uncomfortable or b. they think I’m jealous. Truth is, I’m neither. 3 years ago I gave up meat and dairy, not because it didn’t taste good, but because my body wasn’t working right. I was constantly sick. I ate “healthy” food for the most part, but I found myself never sure when I was going to go from feeling great to feeling violently ill. It sucked. I could go on and on, but in lieu of going to a doctor I decided to read The Kind Diet by Batgirl Cher Horowitz Alicia Silverstone and it changed my life. I made the decision to give Veganism the old college try and here we are 3 years later.

Let’s clear something up, vegan does not always equal healthy, got it? So vegan Oreos and processed vegan meat while fine as an occasional treat are not by any means “health food.” I believe that the majority of your diet should be plant based foods even if you choose to eat meat. BAM. Done. That’s it, so easy. Eat mostly plants! Fruits and vegetables are magical foods, they literally work magic in our bodies. They are detoxifying, restorative, and full of nutrients our bodies need! I’m not a nutritionist, but plenty of nutritionists AND doctors agree veggies are the key to super health. Check out here, here, and here.

The more research I do about plant based diets the more certain I am that the way I am eating is the best way for me. Actually, it’s the best way for everyone to eat, but I won’t start that debate. If you are interested in adding more plants to your diet I highly suggest checking out the documentary Forks Over Knives.

So that’s my soapbox! Be sure to check back often for yummy recipes that are always vegan, mostly plant-based, and definitely delicious.

Fairy Princess

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As you will soon see, Blissful Happenings loves a good hippie moment. I just can’t help myself. The older I get the more and more of a hippie I become. Not sure what that’s all about but this SoCal air probably has something to do with it. It’s all the sun. Totally fries your brain. This look was one of my favorites from a recent shoot with my most favoritest Tatum. Because sometimes you just need to frolic around the forest braless with a flower crown. If you want your own little bit of backless fairy fun, I’m more than a little obsessed with this on here. And get excited, there’s a DIY post in the works… Soon you can make your own flipping flower crown for a fraction of the cost of your Coachella ticket!

_MG_2728-Editpics courtesy of Tatum Kathleen