Fashion Fundamentals: Skirts Over Pants

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{via here}

I have always been a fan of Madonna’s music and style. It’s true that her style is always evolving, but because she is so fearless with it, I can usually look at a current trend and trace it back to her. Like skirts over pants. I love this look and live for it. My first memory of this look is from Madonna.

I read an interview of hers once where she said she was just poor and practical and those were the clothes she could afford at the time. Just goes to show, you don’t need to spend lots of money on style…Madonna created trends with jelly bracelets, everything lace and, of course, skirts over pants/leggings.

There are so many reasons why I love this look. First of all, layering is always a good idea. Second, it is ageless; toddlers and mature ladies can rock it. Best of all, though, it’s just a fun look. Here are some recent looks I found while perusing the 2015 designer collections.

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*All photos from Style.com*

Lourdes Loves Lately

What is everyone up to this weekend? How did your week go? I hope you find some time this weekend to relax and have fun! I’ll be running errands, finishing up this book, trying out some new recipes, catching a couple of flicks (American Sniper and The Boy Next Door. No judging.) and hanging out with my loved ones. Here are some things I’m grateful for this week. Have a good one!

While walking home one evening, I came across this beauty. Why can’t all windows have rainbow lights?

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I have MAJOR love for miniature things. I love this curated collection of mini doll things.

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My sweet and thoughtful auntie sent a care package (just because!) and this was included. This is the best tamarind candy!

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If you’re looking for a sign…here you go!

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Next on my reading list. They say not to judge a book by its cover, but I really hope this is as interesting on the inside as it is on the outside (pun not intended).

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Fitness Gear | All Things Yoga

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{via here}

Once upon a time, Christy Turlington came out with a yoga book and my friend and I decided to go to her book signing. I am a big fan of the 90’s models, especially Christy, so how could I not? She was just as graceful and beautiful as I’d imagined her to be. Unfortunately, I can not seem to find the picture I took with her, so I’ll just have to save it for a #TBT or #FBF on Instagram.

Once upon several times, I’d taken up yoga in its many forms, but never stuck with any of them. One of the fitness challenges I have for myself is to do Bikram yoga for 30 days. I should tell you that the first time I took a Bikram yoga class I had tunnel vision and nearly passed out. Here’s hoping it goes better this time around. I went in search of yoga attire to better prepare myself for this journey. Here are my favorite finds.

1. A stylish yoga mat 

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2. I have a lot of love for BKR water bottles

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3. Adidas by Stella McCartney always has such amazing workout style

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4. This looks like a comfy sport bra

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5. And, to hold it all together, this yoga mat bag looks like it will do the job.

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8 Museums to Visit in Chicago

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{Grant Wood – American Gothic, 1930}

I love going to museums. Sometimes just to visit favorite permanent exhibits and other times to check out new ones. Funny story — when J and I went to Italy, we found out there was a Caravaggio special exhibit happening at one of the museums. Truth is, neither of us were really fans of Caravaggio, but we were eager to see it. From there, we were told of another one, which we also went off to see. It so happened all of the museums seemed to have a special Caravaggio exhibit and we sought out each one. By the end of the week, we had od’d on Caravaggio and could.not.look.at.one.more.painting. Seriously, I don’t know what came over us.

Chicago has tons of great museums. Unfortunately, I haven’t really made the time to visit as often as I’d like despite living a stone’s throw away from most of them. I’d like to change that. Like everything else, things (usually) don’t happen if you don’t plan for them, so I’m adding these museums to my calendar.

1. The Art Institute of Chicago  – This is my favorite and holds so many memories for me. My absolute favorite is the miniature rooms exhibit (that is saying a lot because there are SO many wonderful exhibits here). TripAdvisor voted it the #1 traveler’s choice museum in the world!

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2. The Museum of Science and Industry – Prepare to spend an entire day here because there is tons to see and do.

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3. John G. Shedd Aquarium – This is a great place to go if you are into all things aquatic.

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4. Museum of Contemporary Art – They always have exciting new exhibits and feature some top up-and-coming artists.

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5. Chicago History Museum – Your one-stop shop for learning about Chicago’s past, present and future.

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6. Adler Planetarium –  This was the first modern planetarium in the Western Hemisphere and houses one of the world’s finest collections of antique astronomical instruments including sundials, telescopes, astrolabes and more.

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7. The Field Museum – This museum inspires curiosity about life on Earth while exploring how the world came to be and how we can make it a better place.

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8. The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum – A museum where nature and science come alive.

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Weekly Weblove | 8 Things to Read Right Now

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{via here}

1. If you have an extra $900 million sitting around, why not spend it on the 2016 elections?

2. Could the App economy be surpassing the Hollywood economy?

3. Amazing movie theaters around the world.

4. Take this test and see if you are what you drink.

5. Has the “New Year. New You.” motivation left you already? Here’s how to get it back and maintain it.

6. I am always looking for good hair tips.

7. In case you were looking for a free meal planning template. This is an excellent one.

8. Say yes to this.

15 Decor Ideas to Transform a Bathroom Into an Oasis

I envision redoing my bathroom into a spa-like oasis. I feel it would be more conducive for creating the perfect environment in which I can indulge in luxurious evening baths and have tranquil moments amidst hurried mornings. I’m not looking to do a major renovation, but I’ve been gathering some ideas and inspiration to make small changes that I think will go a long way.

1. I have some blank wall space that I would like to add towel hooks to. Currently, I have an over-the-door hanger, but I prefer the look of hooks on the walls. It just seems so much more tranquil and serene.

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2. I would like to add some artwork (though not necessarily an entire gallery wall like the inspiration photo) to give the space a more personalized feeling.

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3. Since I don’t have a linen closet, adding extra shelves would provide easy accessibility for those items I reach for often.

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4. In lieu of adding wall shelves, I can also do a small cabinet. I like this one for its minimalist design.

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5. You can never have too much storage and this is one clever way to add more, but be discreet about it.

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6. This is a great way to maximize my medicine cabinet storage space, by adding a magnetic board on the back!

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7. In addition to the magnetic board, I also like the idea of having a magnetic strip for those oft used odds and ends, like bobby pins and tweezers.

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8. Plants are always a nice touch in any room. Though I may not be going for the jungle look below, I think adding one or two will be a nice touch.

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9. Having a dedicated make-up station by adding extra shelves seems like a terrific idea.

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10. I like the idea of adding a shelf above the sink. It would save some counter space.

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11. A bag is a great alternative to store hair dryers, curling/flat irons and other hair goods.

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12. An inexpensive way to add a major update is by changing the shower curtain. I like that this stripe one is gender-neutral and stylish.

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13. Replacing the rugs is another inexpensive game-changer.

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14. With all my moves, one thing that’s remained a constant is a hamper I purchased many moons ago. I think it’s time we added a second one.

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15. Once I’ve made all those changes, I will just need to add a bath caddy with some candles, a book and a glass of wine and voila! Welcome to my oasis!

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{All images via Apartment Therapy, Martha Stewart, Little Green Notebook and West Elm}

Tuesday Treasures | 6 Winter Beauty Products

I live in a city with 2 seasons: construction and winter. Winter lasts about 6 months here, which means super dry skin for me. I suppose if I were better about drinking more water it may lead to less dry skin, but I’m not. (Maybe I’ll add it to my resolutions.) Instead, I rely on moisturizer and oil to alleviate the scaliness. Here are my favorites, along with a few other items I reserve for my winter beauty routine.

1. Neutrogena Body Oil – I like to use this in the morning after I shower and my skin is still damp.

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2. Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream – This is an awesome product for those days when my skin is just extremely dry. It’s pretty heavy duty, so I only like to use it in the winter.

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3. Nars Foundation Compact – I find that in the winter, I need a heavier coverage than the usual tinted moisturizers I use during warmer months. I like to switch it up and am currently using this Nars foundation. So far, so good. It provides the right amount of coverage without feeling too heavy and it’s buildable.

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4. Clinique Moisture Surge – My face is really thankful for this.

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5. L’occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream – I find that I cannot go anywhere without hand cream. Unmoisturized hands are like nails on a chalkboard to me. This has been a beloved for many years.

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6. Maybelline Baby Lips Lip Balm – Lip balm is one of 3 items I would take with me to a deserted island. I have quite the collection from various brands. This is one of my favorites.

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15 Delicious Recipes to Complete Your Whole30 Meals

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{via here}

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As I work on my physical state of being (i.e. new year’s resolution on getting back to my ideal weight and overall wellness), I’ve come up with a plan that will help me get there. It includes an exercise plan, meal plan and eating out plan. {Note: I will work on vacation meal and exercise plans as I get closer to my trips.}

Part of my meal plan is to do the Whole30. I first read about the Whole30 as it circulated its way around the interwebz back when it started in 2009. It seemed really interesting, but I’d never had the motivation to commit to it…until now.  I will write about my journey when it’s complete. Of course, I had to research recipes that I could use and decided to put them together here. There are a few instances where I will need to sub or delete ingredients that are not allowed in Whole30, but it shouldn’t be too difficult. Let me know if you’ve tried Whole30 or have any tips and tricks.

1. Roasted Veggies by Good Housekeeping

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2. Roasted Turkey by Alton Brown

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3. Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Garlic Aioli by Lifestyle365

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4. Kale Salad by Heart of Light

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5. Market Vegetables 3 Ways by Cupcakes & Cashmere

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6. Seared Scallops by Alton Brown

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7. Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon and Pecorino by Bree of Sugar & Grace

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8. Cauliflower Rice by Nom Nom Paleo

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9. Roasted Okra by AllRecipes

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10. Melt-In-Your-Mouth Chicken Breasts by Food

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11. Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Herbs by Martha Stewart

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12. Moules a la Mariniere by Smitten Kitchen

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13. Spicy Asian Cucumber Salad by Please Pass the Pie

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14. Arugula, Sauted Bacon and an Egg Salad by Tartlett

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15. Primal Jambalaya by Mark’s Daily Apple

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Monday Musings: Which Kind of Hustler Are You?

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{via here}

I was sitting in a meeting one day discussing leadership and such and someone mentioned Seth Godin. My eyes lit up. I didn’t realize anyone in the room read Seth (not sure why I would think that considering what Seth stands for). He said how sometimes he feels that Seth really speaks to him and whatever he is dealing with that particular day after reading one of his posts. I thought, “Me, too!”

I had one of those moments recently after reading Seth’s most recent post, Two Kinds of Hustle. Here’s an excerpt:

“Then there’s the hustle that’s actually quite difficult and effective. This is the hustle of being more generous than you need to be, of speaking truthfully even if it delays the ultimate goal in the short run, and most of all, the hustle of being prepared and of doing the work.”

My dad used to work two extra weeknight shifts and Saturdays (beyond his regular 9-5 job) to provide for our family. My mom would take evening classes after work to further her skills for a better job and pay. They were both well-educated, but came to a new country with very little in their pockets; yet, very large dreams for a better life for me and my sisters. This is probably not unusual for many people, but it really instilled a very strong work ethic in me.

Though my parents valued education first and foremost, I’ve had jobs since a very early age, from babysitting to retail to various odds and ends (the $1.00 a week allowance from my parents just wasn’t cutting it). I guess, in a sense, I’ve always considered myself to be a hustler. Even now, I know I can scale back and lead a comfortable life, but I’m hungry for more (and not necessarily materialistic things). Often, I’m faced with the dilemma that Seth posits in that post and I have to say, I’d rather choose the latter, though he states it’s the kind of hustle that’s largely unused. How do you hustle?

And, just for fun:

7 Red-Carpet Favorites from The Screen Actors Guild Awards

The Screen Actors Guild Awards show was last night. I was finding it difficult to really love any of the fashion, but after much thought and consideration (<—don’t blame me for that, there happened to be lots of divorce/split news out this weekend), here are my top picks.

1. Julianna Margulies in Giambattista Valli Haute Couture

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2. Reese Witherspoon in Giorgio Armani

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3. Rosamund Pike in Dior Haute Couture

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4. Felicity Jones in Balenciaga

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5. Julia Roberts in custom Givenchy

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6. Julie Bowen in Georges Hobeika

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7. Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Monique Lhuillier

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*All photos from Style.com*