November 22, 2016

BATH TIME WITH NUBY

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Hey guys! Hope your weeks are off to a great start. We’ve sure been keeping busy (work and play) and this weekend we got the chance to go on a little getaway to decompress a bit.

Regardless of where we go, bath time is a must ritual that we can never skip with our little one. Even if I forget or if he’s too tired, he’ll always ask for a bath. It very much relaxes and puts him at ease but he also gets a chance to blow off some steam (you know, toddlers can be very moody during the day, ha!) and the best way to do that is playing for a while in the tub with some of his favorite toys.

Recently, we got some really cool products via Nuby that Lucas is just loving so much during bath time. One of them is the Octopus Hoopla  that is seriously so cute and fun to play with. It gives us a chance to brush up on counting and he loves tossing the little rings in the octopus’s legs. Another fun product he’s obsessed with is the Hippo Spout Guard which can be used in two fun ways for the water to come out : underneath the hippo’s chin there’s a little door that when closed, the water comes out of the hippo’s nose! Lucas just loves it and goes crazy for it! The Nuby Stacking boats are awesome because he is obsessed with naming colors and as is he takes them out and puts them back in order (this toy is great for perceptual motor skills!), he names the colors one by one.

Finally, we always finish with brushing his teeth and the Nuby 4 Stage Oral Care Set System is a fun way to instill the importance of oral hygiene. Even though this oral care system is used in stages, Lucas enjoys using all four brushes, especially the little silicone massager he puts on his finger and brushes his “teefers”. I love seeing him enjoy these products because he has so much fun and has no idea he is learning through play. Nuby products are great for that and I am happy they are safe products for him to use.

We seriously love these products and hope you guys give them a try for your little ones.

Have a great week!

Raquel

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November 7, 2016

Knit top and velvet skirt


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So you probably know by now that velvet is making a huge comeback for the holiday season and I am just over the moon about it. If I could walk head-to-toe draped in velvet I totally would because this stuff is just bomb.com. My husband would never let me though so that would spare some embarrassment. Naturally, when I found this little number   I damn near had to catch my breath because the color is just good enough to wear throughout the day and into the night and can literally pair up with anything you throw on it. Since it is getting chillier here in Orlando, I decided to pair it with the friggin’ loveliest stitch sweater  in the prettiest blush color and you wouldn’t believe how lightweight and cozy it is. The combination of gray and blush has always seemed so pretty to me and I was dying to pair the two together in an outfit. So I finally got a chance to do so!

Hope you guys have an amazing week!

xoxo,

Raquel

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October 24, 2016

tan and black

tan and black tan and black tan and black
tan and black tan and black

Seriously guys: Is there anything chicer than a tan and black outfit? I swear I’ve been seeing this combo everywhere (my Insta, Pinterest, girls at the mall) and I just had to give it a try. I had gotten this little number  a while back and I wanted to do something fun with it – you know me and pairing dresses with pants – so I remembered I had my trusty, black skinny jeans and decided to pair ’em together. I seriously feel so chic with this combo I can’t even. I feel that definitely gold jewelry is the way to go for accessories with this neutral pairing because it sort of brings out the richness in the tan and offsets it nicely.

On another note, we’ve been having super nice weather down here in Orlando and I seriously am loving it. My prayers for cooler weather have been answered this time around and I honestly can’t wait for some warmer clothing pretty soon. Only thing that sucks is the cold, early morning commute to work but hey, you can’t win ’em all, eh?

Hope you guys have a kickass start to your weeks!

Xoxo,

Raquel

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October 6, 2016

5 things I want my son to remember…

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Hey guys! I know I have been MIA  for a bit but I have been very, very busy tending to so many changes our family is undergoing right now and have been going a bit cuckoo trying to juggle everything.

I’ve been thinking a lot about certain aspects of parenthood that have really stuck in my mind, how I am raising my son, watching him grow and taking into consideration that everything my husband and I do affects his development because he is, in fact, very much aware of all that goes around him. Parenthood is such an evolutionary concept and so many aspects come into play that we could easily spend days talking about it. Every family is different, however, in how they approach raising their children. The key is how we are being proactive at instilling the values we hope they display one day when they’re older.

Coming from a dysfunctional environment myself, I know firsthand how important it is for me to be mindful of steering clear of negative mindsets and toxic behaviors. It is not about denying where you have been and come from but using those experiences as stepping stones to become better, stronger and resilient. So with all this said, here are 5 things I wish to instill in my son, tools that I learned along the way growing up and others I still have a hard time putting into practice myself but will not give up on furthering because I believe they’ve allowed me to open my eyes to many truths about myself.

  1. Cultivate patience: My Achilles heel. This is by far the hardest habit I’ve ever had to face and cultivate. I am the most impatient person you will ever meet and many a times it has hindered me from growing both spiritually and professionally. I absolutely believe Lucas came into my life to teach me and guide me to strengthen this part of my life, given that his temper is very much like mine. I have learned you will never get anywhere by adopting a negative, closed-off mentality and when things are heated emotionally, you’re best bet is to be patient with the other person and employ emotional intelligence to leverage the situation.
  2. Be tolerant: Not everyone will think like you, not everyone has experienced the things you have experienced, not everyone will agree with your ideas and not everyone comes from where you come from. Be respectful of other people’s experiences because you can learn so much from them and even discover things about yourself you never even knew.
  3. Be empathetic: It doesn’t matter if you’ve never experienced a certain situation in your life, your capacity to place yourself in someone else’s shoes will take you as far as you allow yourself to distance yourself from an individualistic mindset and think of other’s needs. Remember, animals need empathy, too. That’s why Max loves you so much! Never forget that.
  4. Never doubt how far you can go: You are you’re own best friend and you can be you’re own worst enemy. The worthiness you place on yourself goes beyond simply showing people what they want to see, they need to feel that you value yourself and the best way to do that is by walking the talk, not merely talking the talk. It’s not about ego, it’s about believing you are smart enough and strong enough to face anything that comes your way. Do you feel it in your heart? I know you will be passionate about so many things someday and I also know you will not succeed in everything you attempt to do and that is okay. It’s okay to fall sometimes. The key is to believe you have what it takes to get back up, dust yourself off and try again. We got your back!
  5. Have faith: This one is a bit tricky, for me at least. It’s something I’ve lost many times but somehow, it comes back into my life at the most unexpected times and times of most need. Faith makes us believe in the unfathomable, it is ever-evolving and abundant-should we choose to employ it and cultivate it. You will learn that it is the ONLY tool you will ever need to succeed at anything you set your heart to do but it will take time to understand it’s importance. Your relationship with God is the only one that should never be broken and the one which will be put to the test almost every day, at every hour. I have found that feeding the soul is the only way to make sense of what my mind tries to convey each day. Logic at times can kill faith and will not allow us to see beyond what we could never imagine to be true. Believe in the unbelievable and you will truly see what needs to be seen.

‘Til next time,

Raquel

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September 22, 2016

fALL VIBES and then some…

FALL VIBES FALL VIBES FALL VIBES FALL VIBES FALL VIBES

Hey guys, hope your weeks have been going well. Mine sure has been. Lots of good news and changes coming up ahead for me and my fam bam. But I’ll share those deets with y’all in a later post, so stay tuned!

Well, fall is officially here and my wardrobe is pretty psyched to get in on the action. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll know that last year’s fall and winter totally sucked ’cause it was barely cold (I mean ok I live in Florida but c’mon a girl can dream!) and I really wanted to wear coats and warmer clothing. So I know what you’re probably thinking : “then move to a colder state!”…not gonna happen. I’ll just stay here and keep complaining about how it never gets cold…’cause I live in Florida and I ain’t leavin’. It’s an endless, vicious cycle. And I love it…ha! So bear with me.

Well, my strategy this year is to just make peace with fact that I may not need to wear a heavy coat at all and just stock up on pretty, lighter knits like this one  which are super soft but pretty warm and awesome for layering under a denim jacket or trench. Of course fall is all about breaking out the darker colors so I am loving my trusty corduroy skirt from Jcrew I got a few years back (I’ve linked several options below) and I seriously love it because it’s stretchy, doesn’t feel clingy and makes me feel confident. Of course, it’s boot season and you know I had to break out my fave pair this season because they literally go with every damn thing, no joke.

Switching gears a bit, I wanted to share with you guys some things I am so obsessed with right now, just to get in the habit of conversing with you all a bit more and hope you share yours, too!

  1. If you follow me on Insta, you know by now I have a serious obsession with Sour Patch Kids. No, I had not tried them before because, in all honesty I thought they were yucky-looking and I rarely eat candy, save for a dark chocolate to kill my sweet cravings during the week. Ohhhh man, these things are addictive so don’t be surprised if I start looking a bit rounder than usual, it’s all that sugar I may be eating..ha!!
  2. The Secret Life of Pets. Christ Almighty is this movie so good!!! We can watch this movie ALL DAY and not get tired I swear to God!! It’s soo damn funny; the voices, the situations, the characters, the plot. And Jenni Kayne’s voice as Gidget – my spirit animal – is just the cherry on top!
  3. Nikkie Tutorials on Youtube– Ok so I can’t do my makeup if my damn life depended on it but I cannot stop watching this woman do her makeup tutorials on Youtube. She is downright GORGEOUS, charismatic and humorous I can see why her following is as huge as it is. Oh and her makeup applying skills aren’t bad either..ha!!!
  4. Mr. Robot– these series, y’all. Do yourself a favor and start watching it. Thank me later.
  5. The kids from ‘Stranger Things’– obsessed with the series but these kids just stole my heart. And one of the main characters is named Lucas!!!! How cool is that? Best boy name ever (I may be biased) and Millie Bobbie Brown is the cutest kid ever. I wanna hang with her. For reals.

Welp, that’s all for now. Hope you have a kick-ass weekend and I’ll catch you guys next week!

Xoxo,

Raquel

 

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September 13, 2016

I literally can’t


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I suppose we are all known amongst our loved ones and friends for a certain catch phrase we may always employ, sort of a like a tick we can’t stop. Well for me this one’s it: I can’t. I LITERALLY CAN’T. I can’t deal. Any variation of it works wonders for me. Even in my native language of Spanish I say it: NO PUEDO. NO PUEDO BREGAR. You get the gist.

So imagine my happiness as last week me, myself and I walks into Tarjay (don’t get me started), and I stroll my lil ass (pun intended) into the women’s section and lo and behold find this beaut just waiting on that lonely hanger for me to purchase and rescue it from it’s misery. My heart was full.

Naturally, I wanted to pair it something fun and I felt that jeans or shorts are kinda of an obvious choice for a t-shirt. I had purchased this skirt a while back and I honestly couldn’t find a top that I felt it went with until I bought the aformentioned tshirt. I found it was a cool juxtaposition as it’s a pretty ladylike skirt and the tee is so not what I would pair it with but sometimes two wrongs do make a right so, hey, there you go.

I’ve been seeing this low, slicked back ponytail everywhere and decided to try it for this occasion and let me tell you I was kinda scared ’cause i’m pretty self conscious about my square face and thought I’d look awful but I was kinda diggin’ it. Plus, my hubs was too so, WIN! Also, I am loving my new sunnies from Ilymix! They are so nice for fall and the icy blue color is giving me major life. You can us code ‘Raquel20’ on your next purchase and get 20% off on it!

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September 7, 2016

HOW I BRIGHTEN MY TEETH FT. SMILE BRILLIANT


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Pretty, pearly white teeth. So many of us wish to attain that perfect, pearly perfection but fail by trying products that are just promises. Me, for instance, I’ve tried almost everything. The strips, the toothpaste, the little glow machine thingy, you name it. The problem with a lot of these products is the excruciating discomfort they leaves behind which literally makes me cringe. If you have sensitive teeth, you know what I’m talking about.

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Well, how lucky was I that a couple of weeks ago I found this amazing product from Smile Brilliant which has literally changed my teeth’s appearance dramatically. It is a personalized way of whitening your teeth where you are sent a kit with steps and products to create your very own dental impressions, which you can use as many times as you like, all from the comfort of your home. This is something that is truly great, specifically for someone like myself, who is a mom, works full time and has no time to be scheduling appointments for someone else to do this for me.

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After you create the base for your dental impressions, you send them in the mail (the blue paste hardens and this is what they use to make your impressions). You get them back around a week later and you can start using the whitening and desensitizing gel as soon as you receive them.SMILE BRILLIANT TEETH WHITENING (6)SMILE BRILLIANT TEETH WHITENING (5)

I was honestly a bit scared at first when I applied the thin line of whitening gel to the impressions, thinking “Oh my God I hope this doesn’t make my teeth cringe” but it was so not what I expected and I only had mild discomfort after having the product on for about 25 minutes (you can leave it on for as long as 3 hours but it is advised to start with shorter time frames if discomfort ensues). After you whiten, it is very important to use the desensitizing gel, preferably before going to bed, as you cannot consume any drinks or food for 30 minutes after applying this gel. Over the course of two days, I whitened my teeth around 3 times and the results were impressive. I honestly believed I would never find a product that I could trust my teeth to without visiting a specialist which would not cause discomfort but I am so glad I found this product because it truly delivers on what it promises. Here’s a short video explaining the process if you’d like more info on the product. Also, check out these testimonials from others who have used and loved the product.

BEFORE AND AFTER SMILE BRILLIANT (2)

 


Professional Teeth Whitening

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August 30, 2016

french girl style ft. MAKE ME CHIC



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I am certain that I’m not the only girl who loves a good striped dress (or striped anything, for that matter). Stripes can really go in so many directions, trend-wise, but for me, they are so reminiscent of that whole french girl vibe I absolutely dig. You know french girls can throw it down and the best thing about their style is how laid back and effortless they always look. This dress from Make Me Chic just had that french girl vibe and, although it looks super cute all on its own, I wanted to give it a twist with tattered jeans and high bun just ’cause I saw Clemence Poesy rock a similar look once and when I got this dress I thought to myself “I need to try this look out!”. Adding a little leopard print gives it a nice vibe, contrasting patterns and I absolutely loooove stripes and leopard together so this pairing was a no brainer. As always, accessories are a must but keep them to a minimum and let the clothes do the talking.

Hope you all have an amazing week!

Xoxo,

Raquel

 

 

 

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August 22, 2016

A DAY AT THE PARK FT. NUBY

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Park days are our therapy. It is a sanctuary for us where we get the chance to bond, get away from work, connect with each other as a family and decompress. I really love to see how Lucas bonds with Max, our Boston Terrier, and feel how lucky he is to have him and be exposed to animals because it has given him a learning opportunity to be mindful of other creatures and empathic towards animals. They have the weirdest but cutest bond, sort of a love-hate relationship, mainly because Max is a total diva, ha!! Regardless, we love seeing them together, bonding daily.

Anywho, as any mom would tell you, packing snacks and beverages is super important when going on outings with kiddos and lately I’ve been kinda sick of toting around with juice boxes in my toddler bag. I got this sippy cooler cup from Nuby a while back and Lucas has absolutely loved it. It’s not so big in size or heavy in weight that makes it hard for him to carry around while sipping from it and I love that the straw isn’t one of those kinds where he has to struggle to slurp from the straw. The best is that it keeps his juice cold for a pretty long time, practically all day, and I don’t have to worry about spills (as opposed to juice boxes). Another thing I love about it is that it’s easy for him to open the lid on his own and he doesn’t have to depend on me to open it for him whenever he wants to have a drink. The product is super kid friendly and that is a huge plus in my book.  To be honest, I’ve been thinking of getting one for myself because it’s a really convenient cup for on the go. When you find products like this that make your life that much easier it’s such a relief to have them around so I’m glad to count on good quality products my son and I love!

 

‘Til next time,

Raquel

 

*Thanks to Nuby for sponsoring this post. All opinions provided are my own.

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August 19, 2016

a little leopard print…

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I have great news for you gals: If y’all are crazy in love with animal print, specifically leopard, this is your season. This print is gonna be huge-ola for fall and I am so stocking up on this print because I honestly have always loved it, more than any other animal print.

This time around, I went to run some errands with the hubs and lil Lucas and decided on pairing this gorgeous H&M skirt  with sporty sneakers and a simple tank. Of course, you can glam this baby up with a killer pair of heels and load up on accessories but keeping animal print casual and sporty is so unexpected and fresh that I thought why not just give it a try. After all, I am running around with a toddler so it makes sense to look good and be comfortable while doing so, amiright?

In other news, Lucas will be starting daycare-preschool soon and I am a mess about it. It has been such a roller coaster of emotions because we have never been apart, save for maybe once or twice when I have had my mom or mother in law take care of him and only for a day. Many changes are coming ahead for me, professionally-speaking, and my husband and I felt it was time to allow him to experience socializing with other children his age so that we can both grow and meet our particular needs. I see him so enamored with learning, hungry to explore – as any child would be – and I feel that it would be selfish of me to take that away from him, especially after we visited the daycare he will be attending, he just loved it and felt right at home. As mothers, we always want to have our children safe by our sides because we believe no one will ever care for them like we do and, while this may be true, this may not always be a realistic or healthy view. I’ve come to terms with the fact that it’s okay to allow time apart. He needs time to grow without me around, without coddling him and controlling everything but at the same time being there and reminding him that I will always be there to love and support him. It is the most emotional I’ve been in a while but this too shall pass and watching him grow, explore, change, develop, discover and be happy is all I could ever want and pray for my child. He is protected and guided and I am more than thankful.

‘Til next time,

Raquel

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