online shopping is your friend

lately, i have found myself more and more in love with online shopping. i think the whole idea of just sitting at home in my pjs and browsing online for some cute new pieces, just makes me so happy! while i was shopping online for our vacation, i saw this super cute jumpsuit that i couldn’t live without. i got it from forever 21 and i am completely obsessed!

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normally, i don’t go for things that are strapless. this is mainly because i’m not 100% comfortable with my arms, but i decided to just go for it. and i’m really happy that i did! one thing i would challenge you ladies to do, take the dive. buy the outfit that you may not feel 100% confident about and learn to work it! it may sound super crazy, but wearing this jumpsuit has actually helped increase my self-confidence. i’ve started buying pieces that i may not normally have worn but i challenge myself to wear it anyways. and in doing that, i start to feel so much better about myself and i notice i get more compliments during those times!

the material on this dress is super comfortable, light and breathable. this jumpsuit is perfect for the summer heat!

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make sure you check out forever 21 for some super cute and affordable summer outfits!!

xoxo

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the importance of a vacation!

sometimes life just gets so crazy for me. my husband and i stay extremely busy so when we get the chance to go away for a couple of days, we jump at the chance. a vacation is something i will always recommend to anyone who has a busier then normal lifestyle. even if it’s just for a few days, go away and recharge yourself. when my husband and i decided to go on a cruise, i was beyond ready and excited for this. we only did a 4day/3night cruise, but that was exactly what we needed. time away from the craziness and our phones for a chance to relax and just be together. most of the time, even when we’re together, one or both of us is on our phone so we’re not really together. which is another tip for newly married couples, put the technology down when you’re spending time together. learn to talk to each other about things. joke around together. act silly with each other. just have fun together and learn to be together with no interruptions. even if it’s just for 15 minutes a day, trust me, you’ll see a difference in your relationship.

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we thoroughly enjoyed our cruise, which was through royal caribbean to the bahamas. this was our first cruise together as a married couple so it was a fun experience. normally, you need to go through an experience so you can be more prepared for the future. after this trip, i now know what i need to bring on my next cruise just in case. the first excursion we did was a beach day. and let me tell you, that sun down there is no joke. even though i applied sunscreen like 4 times that day, we still got burnt. and not just a small little sun burn but like lobster face burnt. it was terrible and i was so upset. clearly the sunscreen i brought was not strong enough. the only good thing is that we didn’t plan to do a lot of excursions. this vacation was more for lounging around and relaxing. so we brought our books to read and were able to hang out on the pool deck under the covering.

so what i wanted to do is share my experience and let you guys know what i would recommend that you bring with you on your next vacation. i always like to be over prepared and im sure you do too!

  1. sunscreen: so we brought 30 spf with us. not strong enough. i would highly recommend going with 50 spf or higher, especially if you’re going to the caribbean. the sun down there is not the same so don’t act like you know it is. be safe!
  2. aloe vera: i would highly recommend bringing some aloe vera with you especially if you’re going on a cruise. that stuff sells out quickly on the boat and it’s so overpriced anyways. in the case that you do get burned you’re going to be happy you brought this, trust me. if you don’t have aloe available to you, bring preparation-H.  it may sound crazy but this stuff legit helps relieve any burns you may get being in the sun. we tried it for my husband and it worked.
  3. small handbag: normally i love to tote around my huge MK wherever im traveling. but i have learned to carry light. bringing only the essentials. and for those times where i need to bring a lot of with me, i will always bring a small cross body with me. whenever you’re traveling, no matter where you go, i would always recommend a cross body with a zipper top. that way you can ensure your belongings are protected.
  4. books: the best things about vacation is that you can spend all day reading your favorite book and relax without feeling judged. this is the place and time to do it! sometimes cruise ships can seem boring if you’re not into drinking or gambling (which im not) so having another form of entertainment for yourself is key.
  5. comfortable shoes: this is something i missed. i wish i would have gone to like sketchers or nike to grab some comfy sandals to wear around the beach. having good shoes is no joke either.

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so there you have it! 5 of my top suggestions for traveling, either on a cruise or on land. what are your favorite travel goodies?? leave them in the comments below!

xoxo

weight loss craze!

i don’t know if you’re like me, but im obsessive over the strangest things. well some strange, some not so strange. im obsessed with my skin, my hair, my eyebrows and of course my weight. ever since i finished chemotherapy, ive been obsessed with my weight. mainly because while i was on chemo, i gained so much weight. of course, as a young girl it messed with my self-esteem, i think at that age it’s something that is natural. but as ive gotten older, that obsession has both grown at times yet died at times. i go through these stages of my life where i don’t care what i weigh, and other times i can’t stop thinking about it. what ive come to realize, is all this obsessing has made me miss out on a lot of things. ive stopped enjoying food because i was so worried about gaining weight. i would stress over it so much that i actually had a reverse effect on my body. because i was so stressed over my weight, i would gain weight!! but that is just how my body works. so lately, ive come to this conclusion: this is who i am. this body is what God created for me. do i want to make sure im taking care of myself health wise? of course!! but no longer will i allow the stress of weight loss to control me. so today i wanted to share some of my favorite tips on how you can make small changes toward a healthier you!

multi vitamin: the easiest way to start on the trail to a healthy life is picking up a multi vitamin. there are so many options out there right now, but i wanted to share a few of my favorite.

  1. natures bounty women’s multivitamin: this is a good option for those who hate taking pills. these gummies taste good and are a great way to start adding in some vitamins to your day.
  2. juice plus: i’ve been taking these vitamins for over two years. i absolutely love them and how i’ve felt while taking them. i take the pill form but here are the gummy options. there are two option, the orchard and garden blend and they are made from 17 different fruits, vegetables, and grains. for those who tend to not eat a ton of fruits or veggies everyday, this is a great option.

8 glasses of water: another tip is to make sure you are drinking at least 8 glasses of water everyday! this is something i’m always working on because i tend to get caught up in my work that before i know it, it’s already time to leave and i haven’t drank any water. one way that does help to remind me is having a colorful water bottle. because the color draws my attention away from the computer screen, it prompts me to take a drink. here are super cute water bottle options for you!

  1. s’well water bottle: i love this water bottle because it’s completely insulated. it keeps my cold water cold all day long.
  2. yeti insulated tumbler: another great option. they come in fun colors and also keep your drinks cold all day long. my co-worker has this brand and is completely in love with it.
  3. contigo snapseal: this is another great option. my close friend and boss both have this brand and also love it. i’m pretty sure my boss loved it so much that she bought two!

add some color: adding some color to your food choices is always a great option! the more color, the better! add in some salad, fruits, or veggies to your meal to add some extra healthy love to your meal.

take a walk / add activity: this one, of course, isn’t my favorite but i do it. because i sit all day long at my current job, i like to make sure i spend a minimum of 30 minutes doing some kind of activity. that could be going for a long walk with my husband or getting on our stationary bike. whatever activity you like to, do at least 30 minutes a day and it will definitely help. better yet, start taking the stairs as a small step to add in some activity!

relax: this is something that i’m not the best at, but is something that is needed! stress can cause weight gain. no matter how much you change your food choices, being stressed will cause your body to gain weight. trust me, it’s happened to me plenty of times. the more i let my body relax, the easier it is for me to remain at a healthier state.

of course, these are all my personal opinions, but from my 26 years of like, i have learned what to do and what not to do when it comes keeping myself healthy. do you have tips that you do to keep yourself at your best? share them below!

xoxo

mp

victoria beckham for target

can we please talk about this new victoria beckham collection at target????!! i have been waiting for this release since i first saw it announced. i could barely contain myself! luckily the day it came out, i was able to snag some pieces. i live in a small town, which this time came to my advantage! after church on sunday, i decided to sneak away by myself to “take a drive.” meaning i was on my way target to check out this collection. sneaky, i know, but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do! 

i arrived at target at the perfect time. it wasn’t busy at all. i walked up to the new collection and just started browsing. sadly, a lot of pieces were sold out in my size but i was able to still get two pieces that i loved. the first was her scalloped black halter top and the second was a black romper. both caught my eye because of the detail, and let’s face it I cannot stay away from black. it’s my color! 

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i quickly grabbed these two pieces and put them in my cart so i could get to the dressing room. like i mentioned before, there were a lot of items i really wanted to try on but they were either an x-small or x-large. nothing that worked for me. normally I could do an xl in tops and get away with it, but the way her sizes ran, it was too big. anywho, dressing room time. 

i tried on these two pieces and of course fell in love instantly, i mean who wouldn’t. the top was extremely comfortable and i just felt great in it. it’s great to wear with jeans and heels or flats and it’s perfect with dress pants for work. the detail on this top is amazing too. im not one for much overstated items, which is why i think im so drawn to this collection. victoria beckham does an amazing job at creating fashion that is eye-catching yet simple. perfect combination for me and my personality. the top size wise was good. right now, it fits more on the loose side which is what i prefer. i will most likely need to take it in at some point just because im going through this workout/weight loss phase. (not quite sure how long it will last but we shall see.) but the way the top is now, it perfect size wise for me. 

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the romper was also the perfect size. i really don’t like clothes that are too fitted. for me, im just not comfortable in extremely tight clothes, especially rompers. to me, a romper should be lose and comfy yet stylish. which is this what this romper does. it has great structure and simple detailing that i love. i will say that because of the size run, if i lose anymore weight, i will have to take this in. it’s not meant to be extremely fitted so just be mindful of that. 

i wasn’t able to get anything else cause there was nothing left in my size. but ive linked some other items that recently released with the victoria beckham collection here so that you can shop them for yourself! happy shopping loves!!

xoxo 

new spring pieces

with the spring coming so quickly, i knew that this would the perfect time really clear out the old and bring in some new. of course, like many others, i’ve got to stick to a budget. so of course i’ve been scouring the web to find some stores that have the latest and greatest at a decent price. i found some great stores that have some great fashion and i wanted to share them with you!

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misguided: my aunt is actually the first person who introduced me to misguided. i went on their app and searched for some new items to try and add to my closet. they had very good prices. i did order a couple of pieces from them. i kept two of the three because of sizing. i was definitely off in my measurements but thankfully i was able to get at least one item. i got this great black long sleeve top with a cold shoulder. it is super cute and comfortable. it is a little longer than i originally thought, but its great to wear with skinny jeans or leggings without feeling like my butt is on display for the world to see. plus they have a student discount!! can’t go wrong with that!!

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old navy: in general, i love old navy. i love their style and prices. i got this super cute long sleeve striped top with a lace-up detail in the front. it is so unbelievably comfortable. the material is breathable and not constricting. especially for me, i have a wide back so it’s hard to find tops that fit comfortably. i usually find tops that are perfect on my back but so baggy around my stomach area. but this top actually fits perfectly all around. i actually got another top from old navy that day. it was a short sleeve striped top but it was a baggier style of top. which i love with boyfriend jeans and flats. i tried to link both tops but i was only able to find the long sleeve one. but definitely check this one out! Long Sleeve Striped Top

okay so this isn’t a long post but i will keep you updated on other pieces that i buy and where you can them too. check out my post about spring fashion as well for other trends that are very in right now. you will definitely want to add these to your wardrobe soon!

xoxo

 

 

 

spring trends on a budget

okay ladies, so i know that you have all been checking out the nyfw posts and seeing these gorgeous new collections that are out! but if you are also like me then you are longing for some fresh new pieces but need to stay on budget. i feel ya. trust me.

well what i’ve done today is research some of the latest spring 2017 trends and where you can find some great pieces for a low price. are you ready? i know i am!

right now some of the biggest colors are: pinks (any shade), yellows (any shade), lapis blue, flame (a shade of orange), and more. check out an extensive list here.

if you’re like me, the thought of wearing another color other than black, white or grey just makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up straight. but i promise when you see these pieces i’ve found for you, you will change your mind. i know i did. hence why i already ordered some of these pieces! (shhhhh don’t tell my husband!)

 

trends to look out for:

florals

stripes

slouchy trenches

military jackets

one shoulder looks

 

of course there are more but i’ve picked a few of my favorites to highlight today.

okay, so i don’t normally do a lot of florals or any print for that matter, but here are some pieces that i might just have to get very soon!!

how this works?? i’ve linked each item that i’ve found and loved (basically did the work for you!) so all you have to do is check these out for yourself and tell me what you think below! here we go!!

florals:

  1. victorian ruffle blouse with tie neck – target ($22.99) this top is extremely gorgeous, plus it has a little black in it, which of course calls out to me.
  2. women’s bomber jacket – target ($39.99) this jacket is beyond awesome. bomber jackets are also very trendy right now so you can mix two trends in one item. please just promise you will at least look at this item!
  3. mid-rise pixie ankle pants – old navy ($29.00) this pants are awesome!!! sooooo many outfit choices with these beauties. plus you can expand your floral horizons to your bottoms and just have fun with this piece.
  4. grey embroidered pointed toe pumps – misguided ($63.00) if your wallet is feeling a little generous, these are definitely the needed splurge item. these shoes are beyond gorgeous. plus the floral print on these is everything.
  5. patterned ruffled blouse – h&m ($49.99) – this top is super cute. not 100% that my personal body shape would work well with this top but it was too cute to not include. i love the print and the added ruffles to it. it’s definitely a bolder look but i am totally loving it.

stripes:

  1. women’s button up shirt dress – target ($34.99) this dress is a great way to incorporate some print into your wardrobe. especially if you aren’t 100% comfortable with print. plus, the detailing on this dress is amazing.
  2. relaxed lace-up tee – old navy ($19.94) another great addition to your closet here. a perfect combination of trendy and comfortable!
  3. striped bardot romper – misguided ($40.00) okay so this is may be more of a splurge item but it is definitely worth it. this romper is perfect for spring and can take you right into summer. promise you will check this one out!
  4. black wrap waist striped satin shorts – misguided ($36.00) another great find that will take you from spring into summer. these shorts are definitely a must have!
  5. short pleated top – h&m ($39.99) this top is perfect to take from work to an evening out. the structure of the top is my favorite part.

coats/dusters:

  1. trench coat – old navy ($58.00) this trench is gorgeous. a little more on the structured side, but gorgeous none the less. if you’re looking for a more relaxed look check out the next couple of choices.
  2. oversized waterfall duster coat nude – misguided ($63.00) this coat is beyond gorgeous. definitely on the more relaxed side if you’re wanting more of that slouchy look.
  3. nude long sleeve d ring detail maxi duster coat – misguided ($54.00) another great coat that is more on the slouchy side. it’s a great color and the detail on it is amazing.
  4. coat with draped lapels – h&m ($69.99) if you need a classic black trench this is the one to get. the structure and belted detail just elevates this classic look.

there you have it guys! a few of my favorite trends and where you can find them.

is there something else you want to see? let me know in the comments below!

xoxo

cold weather must haves

the cold weather is upon us and that means we need to get out the hats, gloves, and scarves! and this is the type of fashion that i love! i’ve always been in love with the cold weather. there is just something about seeing the snow on the ground that makes me fall in love. no matter how cold it is, i will always love it. the other part that i love is getting to add layers to your outfits! i love adding accessories to every outfit. it just adds another level to your outfit. it showcases your personality, allows you to have some fun, and allows you to express a different side of you that people may not see every day. how can you not love that?!

some of my favorite winter accessories are blanket scarves and beanies. i’m not much of a hat person on the regular basis, but i will make the exception for a beanie. mainly because it serves as a dual purpose for me. not only does it look super cute but it keeps my head and ears nice and warm.

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i fell in love with beanies when i was younger. when i was 8 years old, i had cancer and lost all my hair. praise God that i am healed today! during that time i developed a lot of insecurities because i gained so much weight and lost all my hair. so because of those two things, beanies were my choice of hat. one to cover up my baldness but another reason is because it didn’t add anything to me visually. wide brim hats are extremely cute but i always felt it added to my weight visually. so i pretty much fell in love with how they made me feel and look and that love has stayed with me until this very day!

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this is one my favorite beanies because of the rich color. i love this richness of this maroon color against this gorgeous cream knit sweater. this hat was actually given to me as a gift but i’ve found some maroon beanies similar and linked them here and below in outfit details. this gorgeous knit sweater is from old navy, one of my favorite stores. i’ve also linked this sweater here and below.

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another accessory that i just love is the blanket scarf. blanket scarves are so unbelievably comfortable and warm. so…why wouldn’t you want one for winter?! the one i’m wearing here is such an amazing print plus a great color palette. because it’s so neutral you can wear it with so many different colors. i love wearing black so here i my neutral checkered blanket scarf with a long sleeve black top. i used these gorgeous rose gold bracelets as a contrast against the black and neutral color palette. i really love how it turned out. because blanket scarves are so thick, especially in the style that i am wearing it, i decided to wear my hair up, something i don’t normally do. to add another level of depth i added a deep red lip color.

there are so many ways to wear a blanket scarf which is why i find them so fun! the way i have it here it a pretty basic way wear it. i basically folded the scarf in half diagonally. while holding both ends, i wrapped it around my neck with the triangle laying across my chest. i really love this way of wearing blanket scarves for very cold days. it keeps me so warm and it just so darn cute.

tell me some of your favorite winter accessories and why! i’d love to hear your opinion!

 

outfit details:

cream knit sweater – old navy

black skinny jeans – levi

rose gold bracelets – alex and ani

green jacket – michael kors – this isn’t the exact coat that i have but it’s  very similar and just as cute!

maroon beanie – charlotte russe

blanket scarf – mod cloth – they don’t have the same print but this neutral blanket scarf is an amazing price and super gorgeous.

skin care brands i love

constant battles i have is weight loss and skin care. now, while i’ve been able to deal with my weight loss battle, my skin care battle was suffering. until now that is. these products have completely changed my life. my skin has never looked better. i’ve settled on a great night time skin care routine that i love and i want to share these finds with you!

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skin laundry restoring night serum: “This concentrated anti-aging mega serum helps brighten dark spots, even skin tone and texture, tighten and boost collagen. Contains a powerful combination of antioxidants, vitamins, amino acids and natural extracts that work together to help protect, repair and resurface skin.” (straight from product information on website)

and let me tell you, it does just that. my skin looks great. my skin tone has definitely improved. i have noticed the redness on my cheeks reduce greatly. this product is one i will definitely be purchasing again and again. because it is great for aging, it’s a great product to start using in your mid to late 20s. but i will say, i have already noticed the effects of this product and i’ve been using it for about 4 months.

himalayan charcoal mask by body shop: “Deeply cleanses and purifies the skin; Works to clean clogged pores and release impurities and toxins; Helps to reveal a healthy-looking, youthful glow” (straight from product information on website)

i stumbled across this product at the airport no less. in the philadelphia airport they actually have a body shop store. i had some extra time and they happened to be having a sale. so i dragged my husband with me and shopped till i dropped! this was one of the products i happened to purchase that day. one of the sales associates asked what i was looking for and i let her know my concerns with my face. i have oily skin, large pores, and blackheads that i have been dying to get rid of. this was one of the products she referred me to try and i am so glad that i did. this product feels great on my skin. its a thick clay so i find using a brush to apply it is best. it also has green tea leaves within the mask, which is amazing for exfoliating. i leave it on for about 8 minutes and rinse off with a wash cloth, wiping off in a circular motion to help exfoliate my skin. my face feels amazing after i use it! in the past 1.5 months that i have been using this product, my oily skin feels like it is finally under control. i don’t find myself as shiny at the end of a work day anymore. and i’ve begun to notice my pores are closing a little more with each use. this is definitely a must try if you have oily skin, large pores, blackheads, or just a good deep clean for your face!

seaweed oil-control gel cream: “This oil-free, gel-like moisture cream is easily absorbed and perfect for combination skin. Moisturizes dry areas; Balances excess sebum; Gives a matte, shine-free complexion” (straight from product information on website)

i. love. this. gel cream. i cannot say that enough. because i have oily skin, moisturizers are so hard for me to choose from. i also get scared that no matter what i use, my face will always look so oily. i’ve used other gel creams before but nothing compared to this one. in the last 1.5 months that i’ve been using this product, my oily face is under control. i love the matte finish it gives my face. so even on days that i don’t wear make-up, i don’t have to worry. now that it is winter, i’m alternating this gel cream with another moisturizer that i have to avoid super dry skin. this product is definitely one i would recommend for oily skin!

drops of youth – youth eye concentrate: “The Body Shop’s Drops of Youth™ Youth Eye Concentrate is an effective roll-on pump eye product, taking its innovation from plant stem cell technology. The unique design supports a refreshing anti-fatigue and nourishing effect while improving microcirculation. Perfect for all skin types, use day and night. For a more intense treatment and for maximum benefit, use under your favorite eye treatment. / Smoother-looking skin; Fresher, more youthful eye contour; Reduced appearance of eye bags and fine lines” (straight from product information on website)

dark circles under my eyes have been something i have struggled with. i came to the conclusion that i needed a vacation for one and some eye cream for two. so while i was at body shop i noticed this beauty. its a roll-on pump, which i find absolutely convenient. i don’t have to touch any thing or apply too much pressure by using my fingers. i apply this every morning before i put on my seaweed gel cream than make up (if i choose to wear any). this is another great thing to start in your mid to late 20s. the dark circles under my eyes have been greatly reduced. i’ve also noticed that the skin under my eyes have been getting tighter and brighter. i’m so excited to keep using this amazing product and see how it changes my skin for the better!

there you have it! some of my favorite skin care products right now. tell me, what are your favorite products? have you tried any that i mentioned above? leave a comment below and tell me what you think!

xoxo

M