TWENTY GR(EIGHT)

LET ME START THIS OFF BY SAYING – Regardless of what I write about my birthday celebration two months ago, nothing I say will do it justice. SUCH an incredible birthday. The day started off with some shopping and Peet’s Coffee with my mom, gifts from my parents and a quick breakfast. My boyfriend then took me to Beverly Hills for the afternoon where he bought me my birthday gift. There are no words to describe how much my birthday gift from him means to me. Let me set up how my afternoon went…side note: I may leave out some personal details but I’ll do my best to share as much as possible.

During our drive to Beverly Hills I felt this sense of calm that I have never felt before. I loved my birthday outfit, my boyfriend looked perfect per usual, and the mood was so relaxed. We drove through Coldwater Canyon and chatted the whole way – I, of course, took some videos of us and he basically let me do whatever I wanted LOL. When we got to Beverly Hills we went straight into Cartier…he asked for someone by name and the next thing I knew, I was trying on the Cartier LOVE ring in pink gold. I remember sitting down with the sales associate as he put the ring on my finger – I was so excited for so many reasons. The Cartier LOVE collection is timeless and classic and I couldn’t believe I was getting my first piece. When he handed me the Cartier bag when we left the store I was TWIRLING around (I have boomerangs to prove it). I felt like I was on cloud nine. Something so special was given to me on a birthday that was SO VERY IMPORTANT for me. This year, 2017, has been the happiest year of my life. I have watched this year unfold in the most amazing way. Christian and I started dating in March and I found myself HEAD over HEELS in love with him within weeks. 8 months later – and here we were – more in love than ever. Getting this ring – an iconic piece of jewelry – was just icing on the cake for me. No material item could ever replace the feelings I have for him. This ring was a bonus. The Cartier LOVE collection is an iconic symbol of love that transgresses convention–it’s a timeless tribute to love–and here I was receiving my favorite gift I’ve ever received from my favorite person ever. I met Christian when I was 17 years old and 10+ years later he was putting a ring on my finger that I have yet to take off 2 months later. E P I C.

We spent the rest of the day shopping in Beverly Hills before dinner with my whole family. Before we came back to the valley, Christian took me to this overlook in Beverly Hills that still takes my breath away when I think about it. I look back at those photos and nothing comes close to standing over those views with him. Stunning.

My birthday dinner consisted of my parents, my brother, my sister in law, my cousin and her boyfriend, my aunt, my grandmother and Christian. Basically, my favorite people all at one table-with the exception of some missing cousins (JY and TA). I received the most beautiful gifts from each of them. It was almost as if everything had come full circle for me at dinner. I was surrounded by so much love at one of my favorite restaurants (JOEY WOODLAND HILLS) and I was having the best time talking to everyone and laughing the whole night—nothing else really mattered. There are no words to describe the way I went to sleep that night. I was absolutely blown away by my birthday–it will probably go down as one of the most memorable birthdays of my life– with my 5th birthday party as a close second LOL.

PS: Before my actual birthday, Christian took me to TAO and the Getty that weekend. TAO was SO much fun – the vibe was perfect and the food was even better. The Getty was epic: warm summer night, enjoying art and goofing around. I wouldn’t change my birthday weekend for the world.

Gifts and experiences aside- my 28th birthday was a game changer for me because it was the first time I’ve ever truly felt completely content with everything going on around me. I was content with who I was in that moment when I woke up on September 5th. Those moments, those feelings, and everything else that happened that day will go down as one of the best days of my life. And to think…there are so many more incredible days to come. MAGIC.

Pictures below! XO

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DATE NIGHT. 1C, 2C, 3C, 4C.

I love a good date night. Quality time is so important to me. Quality time consists of many different things for me – a date at a new restaurant, a gym sesh and dinner at home, going to the driving range, a double date, a movie, wine and good conversation…you name it. Date night is mainly special because of the person I am going on these dates with…The one and only, CA. Granted, although we’ve only been dating for 6 months now…date nights have been consistent since day 1. Here’s some background on why I love our weekly date nights (The 4 C’s):

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  1. Consistency. We have date night – every week – on the same day – and it rarely changes. Because of that, no matter what’s going on in our lives and whether I am able to see him or not during the week, I know that date night is around the corner and we’ll have quality time soon enough.
  2. Checking in. Checking in is so important. I think sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in everything that’s going on in our lives – work, friends, birthdays, holidays, weekend plans. Our date night is for us. It’s a time for us to talk things out, temperature check, have fun, and even plan. Speaking of planning, who has a shared calendar with their S.O.? HIGHLY suggest it! 🙂dn1
  3. Commitment. One of the reasons why I love date night so much is because it shows a willingness to make the other person and your relationship a priority by setting aside special time. Really all I mean by that is – my boyfriend and I make sure that we don’t make plans on that day of the week with other people. Work engagements, friends, other obligations – those are set aside for the other 6 days of the week. It’s a great feeling to know that date nights are usually spent without our phones or our work emails.
  4. Communication. Scroll back to number 2. TIME TO CHECK IN. I’ve noticed that if there’s something a little heavier I want to talk about, I sometimes wait for date night. PAUSE – I know that could be a problem since date night is supposed to be fun, but hear me out! Communication is probably one of the top 3 reasons I truly appreciate the relationship I am in. My boyfriend is emotionally intelligent (AND VERY PATIENT) and takes time listen to whatever it is I have going on. With that being said, sometimes, it’s easier to talk something out over dinner…or while hitting a golf ball…or sipping on a glass of wine. 🙂 I know that interruptions will be few and far between during date night and having his undivided attention is critical when I am trying to communicate anything. Texting a long paragraph at midnight on a Tuesday while your S.O. is asleep won’t do much for you on Wednesday morning when he wakes up wondering WTH is up with you! LOL. In-person communication is key and I truly value the conversations we have – light, heavy, happy, fun, sad, etc.!

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Lastly, since a lot of times our date nights start/end at a restaurant…I thought I’d share some of my favorite restaurants that we’ve visited so far:

  1. Cafe Santorini
  2. Kravings
  3. Din Tai Fung
  4. Bacari
  5. Zinque
  6. The Little Door
  7. Republique
  8. Tao LA

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A few fun date night activities:

  • Driving range
  • Movies
  • Drinks
  • Dave & Busters
  • Bowling
  • Gym sesh + dinner
  • Cooking at home
  • Visiting a museum

Do you have a weekly/monthly date night? What do you usually do for date night? Suggestions are always welcome! XO.

THE WILL TO WIN

This weekend was exactly what I needed…I spent the whole weekend indoors and basically left the house just to get food. My poor boyfriend has been sick but I like to smother him so I sat in his house for three consecutive days while he was ill/in and out of sleeping/coughing/etc…You get it. He couldn’t do much and I really didn’t want to do much so we spent much needed time indoors doing a whole lot of nothing. It was SUCH a dream. LOL. We’re always doing SOMETHING…it’s the only time I’ve ever gotten him to sit still and do nothing. Some quick insight: Even when we’re laying out by the pool he has his laptop out doing work, or he’s going downstairs to get us boba or he’s playing with the dog…SIT DOWN. It was so nice to watch him relax…Sorry babe! 🙂

We watched lots of cool documentaries, some on interior design, algorithms, and even math (sounds boring but I PROMISE they were all interesting)…BUT MY FAVORITE ONE was the Tony Robbins Netflix documentary: I Am Not Your Guru. I’ve heard many people talk about it but I needed to see it for myself. Needless to say, I loved it. He talked about living a deeper life, being fulfilled and how to have more meaningful relationships. I don’t want to give too much away because I HIGHLY recommend everyone see it for themselves but I do want to share one thing from the documentary that stuck with me…

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Tony describes a life changing moment where he “felt the grace of God.” Sometimes things happen by chance or because you put it in motion, but MANY times, we fail to see where God’s grace could be the real reason certain things happen for us. Tony describes a poem that was given to him by a professor (I won’t go into detail as to how this poem changed his life) but it is a poem I now love and wanted to share with you!

Read below and HAPPY MONDAY!

PS- I am looking to buy a book by Tony Robbins and I’m unsure which one to choose! Any suggestions?!

The Will To Win Speech

By Vince Lombardi

Winning is not a sometime thing; it’s an all the time thing. You don’t win
once in a while; you don’t do things right once in a while; you do them
right all the time. Winning is a habit. Unfortunately, so is losing.

There is no room for second place. There is only one place in my game, and
that’s first place. I have finished second twice in my time at Green Bay,
and I don’t ever want to finish second again. There is a second place bowl
game, but it is a game for losers played by losers. It is and always has
been an American zeal to be first in anything we do, and to win, and to win,
and to win.

Every time a football player goes to ply his trade he’s got to play from the
ground up – from the soles of his feet right up to his head. Every inch of
him has to play. Some guys play with their heads. That’s O.K. You’ve got to
be smart to be number one in any business. But more importantly, you’ve got
to play with your heart, with every fiber of your body. If you’re lucky
enough to find a guy with a lot of head and a lot of heart, he’s never going
to come off the field second.

Running a football team is no different than running any other kind of
organization – an army, a political party or a business. The principles are
the same. The object is to win – to beat the other guy. Maybe that sounds
hard or cruel. I don’t think it is.

It is a reality of life that men are competitive and the most competitive
games draw the most competitive men. That’s why they are there – to compete.
To know the rules and objectives when they get in the game. The object is to
win fairly, squarely, by the rules – but to win.

And in truth, I’ve never known a man worth his salt who in the long run,
deep down in his heart, didn’t appreciate the grind, the discipline. There
is something in good men that really yearns for discipline and the harsh
reality of head to head combat.

I don’t say these things because I believe in the “brute” nature of man or
that men must be brutalized to be combative. I believe in God, and I believe
in human decency. But I firmly believe that any man’s finest hour, the
greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has
worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of
battle – victorious.

MODERN FAMILY

Happy September! Last month my boyfriend and I had a wedding to attend in Utah. Plans changed last minute and he offered me a new trip – a trip to Palm Springs with my family. He knows how much I LOVE Palm Springs and I was genuinely excited. I am always impressed by his ability to take action quickly and change a situation from negative to positive! He told me that he’d put it together if I was able to get everyone on board so I immediately called my brother and then my parents (I waste no time). Once my brother and his fiancé were on board, I called my parents…EVERYONE LOVED THE IDEA! NEXT- We were onto the planning phase! Where were we going to stay?! Leave it to my brother and my boyfriend to find the COOLEST homes for us to choose from. SWOON.

There we were- a week out from family vacay #1! I was ecstatic. This was not only thoughtful on my boyfriend’s end but it was SUCH a GREAT break for me. I hadn’t been on a vacay in a while and I was excited to pack nothing but bikinis.

Next on my list – bikini shopping! I live for a good high waist so I immediately bought 3 bikinis online and rush delivered them 🙂 I honestly didn’t pack anything until the night before but I was so excited nonetheless. We were gone for three days and the vacation consisted of homemade breakfasts, dinners on the Palm Springs strip…and LOTS of sun. Here are just a couple of photos from the trip – I have so many more saved on my phone and many were shared on my instastories!

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I also wanted to share some photos of the modern home we stayed in. It was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. Every space in that home was built from my dreams. Clean lines, concrete, and high ceilings. Dream aesthetic!

We played games of pool/Jenga, took lots of fun photos and ate REALLY good food! I can’t wait for the next family trip! XO

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5 SUMMER READS!

SIX WEEKS LEFT OF SUMMER! I love this season, honestly, keep me in hot weather for the rest of my life. Sun worshiper over here! I wanted share some of my favorite books that are perfect for laying out under an umbrella and diving into. How often are you guys buying books? I just ordered a book on Amazon before I wrote this post. Honestly, I can’t help myself. Today happens to be National Book Lovers Day, so I thought I’d share five of my favorite summer reads at the moment. Check them out below.

HOW’S YOUR SOUL

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This is a book about being okay on the inside. It’s a book about being satisfied, stable, and healthy on a soul level. The author explores what it looks like to cultivate a healthy soul. This book takes you through the journey of realization where we come to terms with the fact that our soul’s only true home can be found in one person, God.

SWEETBITTER

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Details, details, details. This book is written so well. The way the author describes everything – using every sense – especially taste and smell…SO good! Sex, drugs, rock-n-roll, New York and a love triangle are all things you can expect to encounter in this book.

HOW TO STOP WORRYING AND START LIVING

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Some great things you’ll learn in this book (haven’t yet finished it):

  1. How to eliminate fifty percent of business worries immediately.
  2. Avoid fatigue — and keep looking young.
  3. Add one hour a day to your waking life.
  4. Find yourself and be yourself.

I hope these four reasons alone are enough to have you order this book NOW.

HOW SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE LEAD

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This mini book was given to me by mom a couple weeks ago. It’s a New York Times best seller, 150 pages long and truly breaks down what it means to take your influence to the next level. When she gave me this book the first thing I did was grab a pen and hit the nail salon! LOL. What better place to read and take notes? This book is broken down into 5 levels and each level is more important than the next!

THE UNTETHERED SOUL

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I will write about this book over and over again until all of you have it in your hand/on your bookshelf. The one question this book always comes back to is this: Who are you? Are you a partner in a relationship? Are you a collection of experiences that have shaped you? Are you a teacher? A student?

So many of these questions can be answered if you think outside of yourself and truly look at yourself as an individual being with many experiences that have shaped you up until this very moment. When you think of who you are what you believe in, you become more in tune with who you are meant to be. A MUST READ.

 

If you have any questions regarding any of these books or others that I have blogged about, message me or comment below! XO.

 

TRAVEL BUCKET LIST – “Not all those who wander…”

I am sure everyone has their fair share of places that they want to visit. Wanderlust is a real thing and I find myself wanting to leave the country every couple of years! 🙂  Here are some places I really want to visit and why: Zakynthos, Greece; Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc in France (specifically); Marrakesh, Morocco; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Rio de Janiero, Brazil; and Sicily, Italy.

Read + check out pics below as I share why these six places are on my travel bucket list!

1. Zakynthos, Greece—this is the ultimate honeymoon destination for me. Santorini, Athens, Mykonos—all stunning…but have you seen Zakynthos?! I truly believe that paradise is on earth and it’s located in that clear blue water.

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2. Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc, France—this incredible hotel is strictly a tumblr-esque want of mine. I have never been big on Pinterest, but Tumblr…I am all about it. Whenever I would see photos of du Cap-Eden Roc I would continuously wonder where this marvelous place was. Then in 2011, I saw photos posted on a friend’s social media site; I was absolutely stunned by it. She posted photos in front of the long driveway into the hotel and I was swooning over the chateau-esque vibe. It has become even more famous than ever due to IG fashion bloggers and the Cannes Film Festival, but seeing her personal photos showed me, I too, would love it.

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3. Marrakesh, Morocco—thriving souks, palaces and mosques adorn Morocco. I still put Moroccan pillows in my room just to dress up the neutral vibe. I really just want to go to Marrakesh for the amazing marketplaces, spices, shopping…and of course…so I can eat a meal on the floor with my hands!

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4. Buenos Aires, Argentina—I’ve been to Egypt twice (father was born there), but I have not been to Argentina. One of the reasons why Buenos Aires is on my list is because my mother was born in Buenos Aires and lived there through her childhood. The way she speaks about Buenos Aires is amazing, I would never want to go there without her. When I went to Egypt, I found that half the reason why I even loved it so much was because my father was busy telling me stories about different buildings, beaches and cities. I’ve been told Buenos Aires is the city for me; I can’t wait to visit…with my mama in tow.

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5. Rio de Janiero, Brazil—the Christ the Redeemer statue alone will put me on that 10+ hour flight to Rio. Something about watching soccer as a child—the yellow and green jerseys, my mom speaking about her father speaking Portuguese and the way the soccer players all had golden brown skin made me think it was the place to be…but then! Snoop d-o-double g himself came out with a music video for his song “Beautiful.” Sold. If you haven’t seen it, I suggest you get on it!

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6. Sicily, Italy—my grandmother, my mother’s mother—was born and raised in Sicily. My parents visited Sicily before they were married and they told me all about what an incredible trip they had. My grandmother and great aunt are two of the greatest human beings I know: loud-passionate-loving-forever screaming-hardcore Italian women. If I have the chance to meet more people like them, let alone a whole city filled with synonymous souls, I’m taking it.

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JUNE MUST HAVES

I am a litttttle late on my June Must Haves but I wanted to share some of the cute pieces of fashion that I currently have my eye on. From new slides to Bardot dresses, this post might be a little all over the place 🙂

If there’s one thing I’ve realized about my own sense of style is that I do not have one set type of style or one go-to look (minus high-waist denims, those are a must). I might be in Adidas Gazelles one day and Steve Madden stilettos the next day. High waist jeans or a floral mini print dress. A TOPSHOP fedora or a flower crown. I am obsessed with fashion because it’s FUN for me to pick and choose the type of person I want to be that day – Sporty Spice or Ginger Spice? Serena or Blair? Hippie vibe or boss vibe? I like it all.

Below are some of my favorite pieces. PS- summer is a week away! I am SO excited! XO

Pixie Pearl Slide Sandal

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GO ON DARK WASH HIGH-WAISTED SKINNY JEANS

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LEND A HAND MEDIUM WASH DISTRESSED DENIM OVERALLS

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GUCCI Sunglasses, GG0062S

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TOPSHOP Rose Print Bardot Midi Dress

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ALL WHITE EVERYTHING

ALL WHITE EVERYTHING

Happy June! It’s almost summer!

The whole “don’t wear white after Labor Day” thing has never really stuck with me. I wear white ALL. YEAR. ROUND. It’s a crisp color that’s perfect for summer, and honestly, for every season. Winter white, anyone? I wanted to share a few of my favorite white dresses for the summer season. For any of you who haven’t heard of REVOLVE, all the dresses I’m sharing today are from revolve.com. REVOLVE has taken over the fashion + social scene in a way NO OTHER brand has managed to do before. They were the front runner for the best Coachella party, they host a prom every year, and their employees are the coolest women in the business! Check out my favorites below!

CICI SQUARE NECK MINI DRESS

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X REVOLVE EYELET DRESS

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DRESS 161

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Enjoy the first day of JUNE! XO

MAY MUST HAVES

FASHION FASHION FASHION. Every month I look for new favorites in the fashion department (shoes, bags, jewelry, etc). I am all about finding new things every month to follow trend for the season. Right now, I am really into sporty wear, I’d like to think I’m having a Sporty Spice Chic moment. LOL. I am in love with every. single. piece. below! Check them out. 🙂

ADIDAS TREFOIL CREW SWEATSHIRT

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NADRI JEWELRY CARDAMOM CRYSTAL CHOKER 

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LULU’S TOAST TO LIFE GREY MINI DRESS

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YSL JOAN SLIDE SANDAL

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SCHUTZ RENE SANDAL

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APRIL MUST HAVES

It’s time to share some of my favorite April Must Haves. Not a lot changes when it comes to what I like; there’s always a new bag, new shoe and new bodysuit on my mind. I think Spring is the perfect time to start experimenting with new colors and looks. Unfortunately for me, I rarely add color to my wardrobe LOL. All black everything, all the time. There are some pieces on here that are from last season that I still can’t get over (::cough cough:: GUCCI BELT) but that’s okay because certain brands remain timeless. When I bought my first Gucci bag ever, I picked a piece that was not only blog-worthy, but super popular. I wanted something that would be cute and classic to match my loafers and the belt I don’t have yet LOL. I know the belt shown below is just a bonus, but PEOPLE, that’s what fashion is: A BONUS.

Check out some of my favorite pieces below. I received many messages regarding where I bought my Gucci bag because the color is hard to find–I bought it at Neiman Marcus and it was the last black one. I am sure you can find it online though 🙂

 

ALLSAINTS MINI ECHO CALFSKIN NORTH/SOUTH TOTE

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SOPHIA WEBSTER EVANGELINE ANGEL WING SANDALNMX2H5K_mu

SAINT LAURENT LARGE MONOGRAM FLAP WALLET59141243EL_13_f

 

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XO!