Summer Look: Levi’s Jeans + White Top

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Less really is more

So much has happened these past few months, and let me tell you, it’s been amazing!! We’ve ditched New York City for a place in the country, and it’s been nothing short of amazing. 

Even though we’re only here for a few months, the changes in our lifestyle and stress levels have shifted dramatically. In New York, we’d rush to every single place, weary of strangers, and use extreme caution when leaving the house after 9 pm.

Things are different now. We take long walks, greet our neighbors, smell the greenery while sipping our morning coffee. We’re going to miss this experience for sure, but very grateful to have had the opportunity to experience it this summer. 

 After this, we’re headed out to a more suburban place and very excited for that journey as well; more on that next time –but you’re here for the outfit! 

Lately, I’ve been feeling so in my skin by wearing less of a lot of things. Does that make sense? Fewer accessories, light makeup, and focus more on simplicity. Uncomplicated colors, such as blue, nudes, and white. More of a natural feel. I’m also focusing more on investing in slightly better quality and less fast fashion items. 

The Look

Top: Banana Republic, white linen, small – Not sure if they still sell this, but here’s a similar one.

Bottoms: Levi’s 711 Skinny, size 2 (26 European) 69.50 USD – but I’ll be honest, My ankles may or may not be losing circulation; a size 4 is probably best. Yep, they’re stretchy.

Accessories: The two small rings are from my mother; I don’t know where she is, but it makes me think of her. My watches are almost always by the German brand Kapten & Son (alternative to my watch); I gravitate towards the clean look.😊 My necklace was a gift from my boyfriend’s family in Germany; I love it so much! The gold and teal ring was from Tuscana, Italy. It’s so sturdy, elegant, and simple, which I’m digging. If you’re ever traveling, find cool pieces to take home with you. 

Feel free to share your looks in the comments. I’m actively searching for inspo!

Cheers,

G.

Winter White Sweater Dress from Amazon

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Yes. I found it on Amazon!

The salad could have been better, but the desserts made up for it.

This dress was worth blogging about; not only is it affordable, but it really does hug your frame and make you feel comfortable. It was extremely hot at the restaurant so I had to roll up my sleeves upwards but other than that, it was perfect.

The Cherfly v-neck sweater dress from Amazon is perfect for fall evening wear on a budget. This dress ranges from 45.00 USD to 52.98 USD. It’s incredibly comfortable, fits slightly loose but still flattering. If you’re shorter than 5’6, you may want to wear heels for a longer/slimmer elegant look, or it may come off as a bathrobe. The fabric isn’t quality but dressing it with some great accessories make such a difference.

My nail polish is from Essie in Luxedo.  Since the main focus of my outfit was white, I wanted my nails to contrast the dress, which I think worked out great.

For accessories – Anything with gold, amber, and nude tones = my go-to.

Nude heels are by BCBGeneration, I would have opted for open-toe but it was F R E E Z I N G that evening. No, thank you.

My amber watch is from Kapten and Son in Campina Mesh. It’s a rose gold classic dainty watch with a white face. I’ve had it for about four years now.

Round teardrop earrings: I found these at Marshals, and I’m so bummed I didn’t keep the box, but I found similar ones from Lucky Brand.

Makeup: Though you can’t see it, I wore a bright red lipstick from MAC called Lady Danger, a bold tomato red.

Perfume: By Dolce and Gabbana “L’imperatrice, it smells like sweet citrus and florals in the summer sun. I bought this when I visited friends in Florida; the warm weather made me buy it!! I have no regrets but I think it was totally an impulse buy.

Things I wore ✨

 

I’ve taken a bit of a break with PDG because there are many moving parts right now, but hopeful that it’ll come back to normal soon. New spaces, books, and tips are already on my to-do list for me to share with you. Can’t wait to share the exciting updates with you (and photos).

Chat soon. ❤️

G

Book Review: Tender is the Flesh by Augustina Bazterrica

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After a grave virus eats away most animal life, Augustina’s characters resort to cannibalism in this dystopian universe.

Genre: Dystopian Fiction

I stumbled across this book and now cannot see the world the same again. This world is entirely life-altering, simply because there are severe parallels between our current factory farming and the world that Bazterrica creates in her novel. Human flesh* (a specific kind of human-bred meat) is nothing more than a way to feed and indulge those who can afford it. 

Breakdown: Augustina does a tremendous job describing the characters and their headspace to her readers in this dystopian world. Once horrified by their choice to eat humans, the main character is now faced with living in their reality, working at a farming factory where they breed, kill, and sell human meat. The narrator describes the laws established to produce this meat, they call “heads” and walks us through the process of treating them like farm animals. These “heads” are tortured, killed, abused, and without dignity (much like factory farming). 

Read it if: You want to be seriously horrified. 

Is it funny: No… oh no..

The cover: An amalgamation of a half-human and half cow (animal), terrifying.

Do I recommend it: I really do. If you’re not into horror or dystopian readings, this is a great one, to begin with. I am still recovering from it…

Rating: 5 Stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The Sum of Small Things: A Theory of the Aspirational Class by Elizabeth Currid-Halkett

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Grab this non-fiction book on Scribd

From breastfeeding etiquette to shopping at Whole Foods, Elizabeth Currid-Halkett writes about the inconspicuous and conspicuous differences in classes one can recognize by observing simple everyday activities.

Genre: Self-help

A colleague of mine amassed a substantial amount of wealth, making it effortless to retire before forty. It got me thinking of what their new life will look like. I’ve always heard how the wealthy take their vacations, shop, and eat, but this time, I wanted to find a book that could tell me more about the differences and similarities between classes in general. This book was a really great start in funding my curiosity. If you rather listen to it, you should try scribd.com

Read it if: You’re up for an entertaining and easy read, filled with neat factoids about classes, happening in real-time.

What’s it about: You’ll learn about the class systems of today and why we do the things we do when it comes to money, class, and status. Elizabeth discusses the aspirational class’s upward mobility to achieve and succeed in everyday social and work life. She does a great job at bringing back historical theorists that discuss the ideas of class and the need to impress or suppress the concept of wealth depending on several geographical, racial, and cultural perspectives.

Is it funny: No, but I find that a non-issue!

The cover: Satisfying to look at, true to the book.

Do I recommend it: I do. I did not expect this book to indulge me the way it did. It was cleverly written and allowed me to see certain examples she used in the book in real-time (cough cough, Whole Foods). Thanks, Elizabeth!

Rating: 5 Stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Let Me Tell You Something by Caroline Manzo

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Find the paperback version or audio version

Genre: Humor/Non-fiction memoir

This non-fiction memoir jumps into Caroline’s core values; her classic outlook on married life, family, friendship, and beauty. Though I would like to agree with some of it, I can’t relate because I’m vain (in the beauty area), and I can fully admit that. .__.

TV reality star from RHONJ, Caroline, sounds like a great person to meet. She talks about family traditions, fan interactions, her thoughts on plastic surgery, and “Ask Caroline” sessions (advice). Truth be told, I would ask for advice too, but some of it sounds outdated regarding dating and plastic surgery, but again, I appreciated her take on things. Needles to say, I don’t think Gen Z’s would really enjoy this book? Maybe some Millenials.

Read it if: You want an easy, feel-good book that you can listen to while you’re driving to work or cleaning your house. Also, read it if you’re having relationship troubles and feel like you need advice from someone with life experience.

Breakdown: Caroline’s career and home life built on respect, family, and loyalty. Her life sounds so wholesome, and some of it tragic. At one point (which made me think), the author said that she doesn’t mind if her home gets dirty when she has guests over. I admire that because I’m neurotic about my home, yet it’s still messy. But she’s inspired me to change that. Plus, what’s the point of having a lovely home if nobody visits becuase you treat your place like a museum. Great tip, Caroline, thanks!

Is it funny: No, I was expecting some of it to be. Caroline has witty one-liners but nothing that will make you spit your drink out.

The cover: I want to sit right next to her. That’s the vibe I get. She looks like a “You can sit with us” kind of person. I like that.

Do I recommend it: Frankly, I don’t think this book is anywhere near in-depth self-help since there aren’t any specific measurable action plans. Not that it was supposed to be a self-help book, although most of her tips leaned towards that. The author does preface that she’s not a professional counselor/coach, which I appreciated. Caroline could have raised the bar more; it was very PG. It could be read as if she wasn’t candid or vulnerable. I don’t know if that’s who she is, but I still find her charming. If she does write another book, I would encourage her to be more vulnerable (it doesn’t need to be dramatic).

I will say that it was nice to have the author read her audiobook.

Rating: 3 Stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️

All Natural Body Scrub: Coconut Sugar

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By far one of my favorite body scrubs high-end without the hefty price tag! The ingredients are as natural as you want them to be, and most of them you probably already have. 

I would advise a light pour with the coconut oil because of the not-so- pleasant oil stains in your tub later (trust me). Also, if you live in an old building, chances are your pipes will clog too. Less is more.

The real benefit of this scrub is its soothing properties for dry, damaged, and dull skin. I use this scrub when my skin is taking all kinds of hits. It’s the best thing to do the night before a major event. Please be gentle, and if you are using it on your face, maybe scrub two days before a major event.

Ingredients you’ll need:

100% Unrefined coconut oil – 1.5 tablespoon – is an antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory. 

Organic honey – 1.5 tablespoons – a humectant, excellent for dry skin, and acne. My honey is from Ecuador.

Sugar – 4 tablespoons – organic is excellent if you have it, but mine is plain old sugar – great for acne, and clogged pores.

Coffee – 2 tablespoons – organic is great, but I used the regular old Folgers brand. Make sure it’s not flavored coffee!

You’ll need a container with depth; that way, it won’t go flying around the countertop when you mix the sticky solution (honey). I used an old container and then poured the ingredients into the saucer in this photo.

Don’t clean utensils with alcohol since it can mess up the smell. Use regular dish soap and then pat dry with a towel or napkin. 

Step 1. Gather all of the dry ingredients, sugar and coffee, and mix them in the container.  

Step 2. Once they are thoroughly mixed, pour a tablespoon of coconut oil, and mix again. 

Step 3. Add the honey and mix until you can see the grains combine. 

Finish: The consistency is supposed to be the soft clump kind. Not too sticky where it turns into balls, but not too weak where they can’t combine. That way, when you scrub your body, it can actually cover the areas you want to polish. 

After your scrub, lather some oil or your favorite moisturizer as if your life depended on it and you’re finished!

You can leave the scrub in the fridge when you’re not using it. I keep mine for about a week since I scrub about 2-3x a week. Don’t let it sit too long in the fridge since it goes bad sooner than later. Since there aren’t preservatives like “citric acid” you may want to toss after five days. I make small batches to limit waste.

I hope you liked it!

The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F**k by Mark Manson

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Manson encourages you not to care about the little things, only the things that matter. A bit idealistic, and somewhat self-indulgent. Either way, I still enjoyed a few bits.

Check out the paperback version or theaudio version.

Some of it made me want to give a F***k…

Genre: Self-help

Read it if:You think you have too much on your plate, not enough “time,” and sh**priorities. Read it, if you want to better understand why you do what you do (and how to stop if it’s what you’re craving). Also, read it if you want to hear some wisecracks you’d probably think to yourself but never say out loud.

Breakdown: Learning not to care but actually care a lot about what you want to gain out of life. Mark has a bit of a philosophical approach to your troubles, in where he tells you flat out that you’re going to die, and maybe, you should start giving a f*ck about the things that truly matter and less so, of the trivial things.

Is it funny:Sometimes. Not the best comic relief, if that’s what you’re looking for, but entertaining.

The cover: ORANGE. It reminded me of this one time, where I went to an interview, and the walls were as bright as this color. When I asked the Recruiter why they chose orange, she told me it was because it calms the interviewees down. I’m guessing Mark Manson’s intention was to calm down his readers as well. Note taken.

Do I recommend it:I think this book is a regurgitation and amalgamation of the 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene and 12 Rules for Life by Jordan Peterson. Though these two books are my favorites, I feel that the S.A.N.G.A.F, is more of a light skimming of the two, so I didn’t really feel as though I gained thorough knowledge from it. It’s great for an easy read and not an in-depth approach to your troubles. Don’t expect it to scalpel through your deep desires and pour over your greatest struggles. I’d say that this book will suit those who have a perceived normal/tiny bit volatile lifestyle. 

Rating: 1 Star ⭐️

Black and White Classic Casual Wear

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Can you believe we are at the end of 2020? I can’t either—cheers to the new year, in black and white everything.

 

The black bodysuit is from Boohoo. I’m wearing a size 10(m); I feel like a 5lb sausage in a 3lb bag, so please be sure to measure yourself. I may have lost all sensation in my arms for this photo op, but worth it for you guys. The detail in this bodysuit is beautiful. You can wear it with a skirt or with pants, which is great for versatility. 

I love white, but I’m not blessed enough to maintain things the same color. Usually, I ruin white articles with makeup, my dog’s hair, and pen stains.

My pants are from American Eagle. This brand is great for short term use. The only issue (my fault) is the hip/waist ratio. My love handles don’t like to be hugged, and it’s a bit too low for me, so make sure you’re comfortable in the kind of rise you purchase.

Shoes are by BCBGeneration. I love this brand!! They look sexy, clean, and again, it’s all about versatility for me. I need to dress outfits up and down for me to buy them. Make sure you have flats nearby if you are planning on walking in heels. Tip: rub deodorant on your feet to prevent friction, but not on open skin!

I cannot tell you how much I miss wearing pumps. Before quarantine, I planned to buy new pairs of shoes and dumped about eight. Then covid hit, and now I’m just sitting by shoeless (I’m exaggerating). No point in getting anything now, since there’s nowhere to go (*cries in silence*). 

For accessories, I kept it simple since the colors are what pop out the most.

The purse is from Nine West. It’s pretty old and has held up exceptionally well. You can find inexpensive quality bags at Marshall’s, but they don’t always pop up. This tote I found online has a similar feel but shop around for your perfect size. I wouldn’t say I like big bags, since I’m short.

My watch is from Kapten and Son in rose gold. Classic, clean, and wrist slamming durable.

Earrings: They are simple teardrop looking with a rose gold/nude hint to them. They were a gift from a friend, but here are some similar-looking ones. If you have a round face, long earrings usually compliment it well.

I added another bag. ^ it’s a mini book-bag from Kapten & Son to make this outfit a bit more playful.

What are you wearing for the New Year? 

Declutter Your Home

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Have you seen those IG pages with pristine homes or offices that are clean and perfectly organized? The kind that make you look at your space and and think, “-ugh”.  

Fab Photo by Liana Mikah

Covid-19 has transformed our home into one big birdcage. It’s where we work, exercise, sleep, eat, and even vacation. But how do you relax when there is so much junk everywhere? 

I’ve told my sister about the idea of decluttering her apartment, and she tells me, “I don’t plan on staying here that much longer, maybe a year or so.” But that’s too long to wait! Sitting in a space that is not peaceful, organized, and calming is not worth the money you’re saving.

I’m here to help you organize it; it will be a therapeutic process and change how you feel for the better.

The best way to declutter; start with these simple steps:

  1. Divide the home/office into rooms. Then divide those individual rooms into spaces. (ex: bedroom or a kitchen office)
  2. Once you’ve selected a room (ex: bedroom/kitchen office) – Start categorizing the space.
    1. Drawers – You will start cleaning all drawers in the space first.
    2. Closets – You will start cleaning all drawers in the space second.
    3. Visible space areas – You will start cleaning all v/a in the space third.
  3. Then divide whatever you find in the three categories above into 3 categories.
    1. Things I still use/need.
    2. Things I have not used in 6 months/want to give away.
    3. Things that have no meaning/value (Ex: an old vacation globe that takes up space, a notebook that collects dust, an old I love LA shirt you don’t use).
  4. Know your color palette/style – Not only do you have to throw things out, but you also have to ask yourself, “does this go with the color scheme in this room?”. If not, your place will look like a Macy’s showroom.
  5. Grab a trash bag, and promise to fill it – Fill the bag with things you don’t need and be honest with yourself. How does said item provide peace and meaning in your space?
  6. Create a monthly decluttering schedule – Once a month, commit to decluttering your space. Set a minimal amount of items to either chuck or donate, ex: 5 items per month. The more you do this, the less hours you’ll spend cleaning through mountains of junk. Remember, your time is expensive. 

Benefits: This will ease your mental anxiety over the space and help you find things you always seem to misplace, creating real savings; your time. We spend so much time that we can never get back doing things we could have avoided. By keeping your space organized and clean, it will free your mind and time to do what you truly love!

You will not be able to do this in one sitting, and that’s okay. Be patient with yourself. By decluttering your space, you’ll be able to live/work in an area that fills you with comfort, security, and tranquility. You will also find unique items you forgot you had and help you let go of things that no longer suit your lifestyle or decor. You’ll even think twice before buying!

Hope this helps ❤️