Sunday, December 30, 2012

New Burberry Rain-boots OOTD

My husband said that it never rains in California and that I wouldn't get any mileage out of my new favorite purchase. Well hubby... it's a good thing that you didn't pursue a career as a weather forecaster because it has been drizzly and gloomy all week!  But I still love you the same:)

I've never been so excited about rainy weather! What a way to show off my newest goodie... My Burberry rain-boots that I scored at my recent Vegas trip.  


I had been wanting a pair of the classic print Burberry boots for the past 5 years, but either couldn't bring find a pair that were my size or bring myself to fork over the $220+ purchase. *sighs*  But this year I was able to find a pair that fit my feet and fit the bill (-$100 off retail!!)! Yes!!     


Nevertheless, this purchase was a huge splurge for me and I believe the most I've ever spent on a pair of shoes. The lowest price that I've seen for a size 6.5 is $120 and though I had my doubts I absolutely have no regrets about this purchase.  I hope it rains for the next couple of weeks! These shoes are way too gorgeous to let them sit in the closest. :D    

FYI: My hair looks different because we actually both went to get our hair cut/styled and I forgot to capture a shot of the base of the outfit. Silly me!

THRIFTED
Lace Top: Platos Closet, Costa Mesa, CA
Abercrombie & Fitch tank: Palos Verdes Resale, Lomita, CA
NEW
Black Blank NYC Skinny Jeans: Marsalls, Costa Mesa, CA
Necklace: Eugenes, Costa Mesa, CA
Burberry boots: Burberry Outlet, Las Vegas NV
White BeBe jacket: Gift

For the outfit pairing I decided to keep a neutral palette of whites, greys, and blacks to really allow the classic beige Burberry print to shine. I paired the boots with my favorite black skinny jeans and layered two thrifted tops upon one another and added a necklace in the same color family to help elongate my figure.  It's was a bit cold so I wore my white BeBe jacket that my dad purchased for me a few years back.


How do you dress for a rainy day?


Yours Truly,

Irene    









Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Fresh Baked Cinnamon Buns, Hot Coco, & Elf on Christmas Day

It was Christmas morning and I was all snuggled up in my nice warm bed. Oh how good it felt to breathe in the nice crisp air and be bundled up in the fluffy blankets. But alas the sun's bright rays peaked through my window shade to wake me up. My husband awoke before me and proceeded downstair to begin our morning with our families.


Mmm... Dark coco with toasted marshmallows was the perfect beginning to our day. Do you drink a hot beverage to wake you up? Comment below to let me know!     


Now we can't start our day with empty tummies so I decided to make some fresh cinnamon buns straight from the oven. And boy the house sure did smell like a bakery. Truly scrumptious...


Next on our agenda was to select a movie to enjoy.

While Elf must be a household favorite movie neither my husband nor myself have seen this holiday classic. Craziness I know! But we decided to put an end to this nonsense to see what it's all about. So glad that we did because we absolutely loved it! Will Ferrell and Zooey Deschanel are hilarious and it truly is a feature that the entire family can enjoy.  If you're looking for another great holiday classic consider Babes in Toyland, Home Alone, or It's a Wonderful Life. They're just perfect for this festive season.

What's your favorite holiday movie?



Yours Truly,

Irene

Monday, December 24, 2012

Red & Green Christmas Eve OOTD

Merry Christmas Eve everyone! I hope that you're all enjoying it with family and friends. It's been a while since I've done an Outfit Of The Day (OOTD) and with Christmas just around the corner I thought that today would be a great day to showcase my festive spirit.  Bring on the cherry reds and greens galore!  


I absolutely love this red dress as it can be worn alone or as a foundation piece, but since it's getting a bit chilly down here I decided to layer it with some of my recent purchases, some of which were thrifted. Can you tell which were preloved and which were bought new?


Thrifted: 
Pale Green Ann Taylor Cardigan
Zara Ankle Boots
Genuine Leather Belt 

New: 
Red Lace Dress 
Charlotte Russe Gold Necklace with Coral Accents


Pairing solids with patterns and lace with leather may be daring for some but I think the contrast makes for a great statement.  I may not be able to get away with this color scheme during the spring or summer, but it's definitely an outfit fit for the season.


What kind of outfit would you wear for the holidays?


Yours Truly,

Irene  

Monday, December 17, 2012

Home Cooked Crispy Roasted Rosemary & Potatoes Dish

My husband loves potatoes almost as much as he loves me, though sometimes it's hard to tell the difference. lol Initially I wanted to try Ina Garten's Roasted Rosemary Potatoes, but I'm a visual learner so I  decided to watch a youtube pro show me the step-by-step method.  I ended up using Laura's Roasted Rosemary and Garlic Potatoes video with red-skinned potatoes (vs White Idaho potatoes) and here's the end result.     
 

I used twice as many potatoes and my oven cooks unevenly so many wedges look more crispy than others, but this is definitely a great and easy recipe for the entire family to enjoy. The crispy texture contrasting the fluffy interior is mouth watering and the robust Rosemary aroma completed this fragrant dish. And yes everything on the plate was gone after dinner so I'm glad I snapped this shot before our family devoured it. While I love this simple recipe, I'm on the search for new Rosemary recipes to try as Sean our Rosemary tree has much to offer for this holiday season. If you have suggestions I'd love to hear them.


What kind of comfort food do you and your family enjoy during the holidays?


Yours Truly,

Irene


Sunday, December 16, 2012

When I pay full price & when I don't, plus discount mall haul video!

Don't get me wrong I never like paying full price for anything but every once in a while it happens. Oh  how I despise my feeling of defeat... but from time to time it can be difficult to find a counterpart that can fill the needs the same way that the one full price item does. While I do a large majority of my shopping either online, from a discount warehouse, or a second-hand store there are certain items that I am willing to invest time and money to find the perfect product. For this month those two items happen to be in the beauty and fashion category. I've searched high and low for these two basics and decided on these investments pieces     

*Splurge: Victoria's Secret Nude Strapless and Stila's Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner
*Skimp: Watch video below!

Splurge: Bra and Eye Liner
NUDE STRAPLESS BRA: In my experience most of the discount warehouses carry wild colors and extravagent designs, which is great for me since I love really bold colors and designs. However, recently my nude strapless gave out and no longer holds up my girls the same way that it use to- RIP. So, I was on a journey to find a new foundation piece. While I don't advocate for retail price often here's my logic on why I made the splurge.

1. Fit: Perhaps I've watched too many episodes of "What not to wear" but it seems that a good fitting bra really does serve as the foundation for all your garments. Also, if it doesn't feel good, you most likely won't look good either.    

2. Color: Nude is a basic color that will go with any outfit and will never go out of style... ever.

3. Strapless or multistraps: I won't lie, I have a few morepieces that show off my clavicle. Scandalous I know... 

Skimp: Lip Liner, Candle, & Spa treatment
BLACK EYE LINER: I'm open to trying new beauty products except for eye liner and here's why...

1. I have very oily lids and I have high cheek bones which is awesome (the high cheek bones not the oily lids) but with those features combined I get a lot of eye liner residue build-up under my eyes when my liner flakes, which is a big no-no.  I can deal with colors that fade or products with a robust splash of color, but panda eyes is not something I enjoy rocking and unfortunately there have been one too many times.

2. Black Eyeliner is a one of the most powerful tools to really make your eyes pop, so I am willing to make an investment on a go-to foundation piece that I will use regularly.

3. Frankly, I am tired of looking like a panda and I'm not clear if we're able to return opened drugstore cosmetics or online purchases.  Does anyone have an answer to this one? I've tried multiple liquid eye liners in the department stores and never had a problem with returns.  

Okay, not that I have confessed in paying full price we shall move onward to the bargains conquered! All the products mentioned are items that I had been meaning to try but waited for a generous promotion before sampling. I guess you could say they're more like icing on the cake than pure necessitates, but who doesn't enjoy indulging :)

Come check out my video if you haven't done so already. And why yes that top from Missoni for Target collaboration, but I bought it for $5 (New with tags!). I'll have to blog about that another time



*Skimp: Victoria's Secret Lip Liner (3 for the price of 1) two sets of Bath & Body Works 60 second manicure and matching lotion (Stacked Online B1G1 Free coupon and store's B2G1 Free promotion), Small Tumbler from Yankee Candle in the scent Bahama Breeze (30% off entire purchase coupon)  


What type of products are you willing to pay full price and what items are you not? 



Yours Truly,

Irene 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Meet Sean our $10 Rosemary Christmas Tree

I love a giant Christmas tree in the living room as much as the next person, but I also love multi-functional items just as much. So when I saw this cute little Rosemary shrub at my local grocery store I knew that he was the one and for only $10 bucks I was willing to make the investment. When I took him home, I decided that he needed a name so I named him... Sean. Don't ask me why, I just like the name. :)

With the perfect cone-shaped figure, pleasant aromatic scent to the air, and beautiful flavors in my upcoming dishes Sean's the perfect addition to our home. Festive and fragrant! Can't wait to try some new recipes with Sean's offerings.


I'm thinking about making Ina Garten's Rosemary roasted potatoes as it seems that even a novice chef like myself can make this work.  I'll let you know if a future post how that goes. :)

What Rosemary recipes do you love?




BTW: The fact that there are only two ornaments on Sean is intentional as it symbolizes our 2nd Christmas together as a married couple. :) We get a new ornaments each year as our marriage grows stronger. Do you engage in any holiday traditions with your loved ones?

UPCOMING EVENTS:
*Free Outdoor Movie and Popcorn Event at The Lab, Costa Mesa, CA: 6:30pm Each Thursday in December before Christmas. Click here for more details.
*Free Screening of "The Hobbit" in Westminster, CA: Must RSVP and be a current yelp member. Click here for details.




Yours Truly,

Irene






           

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Gingerbread House Decorating at Powells Candy Shop, Laguna Nigel CA

While My husband and I don't have kids of our own yet, we are definitely kids at heart. So when I saw this awesome Plum District offer to decorate our own gingerbread house we couldn't refuse!  $25 for two to enjoy creating edible masterpieces at our local candy shop- Powells Sweet Shoppe. How can you not be excited?!   We loved everything from the curated Candy songs in the background to the complimentary sweets to eat.  Here's my complete review on yelp. 

*For those of you who aren't familiar with Plum District, it's a discount website focused on family friendly activities geared towards moms.  If this site interests you please use my referral link.    

Here are our blank canvases... 


House #1

House #2

Tell me which house you'd like to live in? and can you tell which house is mine and which is my husbands? :)


To be honest, I decorated both houses. My husband was more interested in eating candy versus decorating so both creations are mine. Though I do think I like House #1 slightly better. :)  The Candy Lady was super nice and also spun us some free cotton candy. We really are kids in a candyshop :)

 What activity makes you feel like a kid?


Yours Truly,

Irene 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Tasting Affordable El Savadorian Puposas at Izalco in Santa Ana, CA

I love trying new restaurants and ethnic cuisines because there's just so much passion that is put into each culture's specialty and you really can taste the love in each bite.  My experience at Izalco was no different as my college girlfriend suggested we try some homemade puposas.  Check out my Yelp review for the details on my experience.    


My puposas came naked and they provided an entire jar of their homemade Curtido De Repollo (the pickled cabbage concotion) for a customized puposa experience. I pilled my on high and it just added a bit of zesty flavor to the rich cheese and protein combination.


As you can see from our empty plate we loved our food and can vouch for it's tastyness.   Each puposa also doesn't cost an arm-and-a-leg and for a mere $2.5 you can sample one! Two is more than enough for a hungry patron.


What kind of ethnic cuisine have you sampled?



Yours Truly,

Irene   

Monday, December 3, 2012

Free Gingerbread House Exhibit at DSC

UPDATE: I just started a facebook page. I'd love it if you'd "like" my page :)



It's the most wonderful time of year...With the holidays in full swing I can't help but feel a bit more merry and gleeful, despite the recent down pour.  This past weekend my college girlfriend and I visited the Discovery Science Musuem in Santa Ana as they presented their Science of Gingerbread exhibit complimentary thanks in part to a generous endownment.

Just FYI, if you're a Santa Ana resident admission is FREE on the first Tuesday of each month and it's FREE on the first Saturday of each month to Bank of America credit card holders. Credentialed teachers get in FREE daily. Read here for more information about discount days.

Each year this musuem hosts a gingerbread house decorating contest and I will admit some of these entrees are definitely magazine worthy! Below are a few snapshots of my favorites.




I would LOVE to live in a candy house like this? Pretty much perfect in every way, shape and form. The gazebo is also so elegantly done as well.


Are you kidding me? This entree is a Gingerbread TREEHOUSE. Crazy what people can come up with. Though I think the stair leading up to the house is broken :(

Next to it is a Gingerbread carousel. The pipping looks great and the little animal details are so adorable.


A gingerbread cruise with fondant penguins... This entree definitely took it to the next level! I especially loved the way they decorated their Christmas tree and appreciate the attention to detail on their boat.  This family must have a professional baker in the family!


This library gingerbread house was definitely the most creative in my opinion. I love how they used this exhibit as a plateform to encourage kids to read. Awesome job!

My hubby and I also made our own gingerbread houses as well, but you'll have to wait for the next post to see our creations. :)


What kind of gingerbread house would you make?




Yours Truly,

Irene

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Black Friday Thrift Haul & Club Monaco Internet Purchases

I am so incredibly upset that my blogger deleted a substantial number of my posts *shakes fist vigorously* but regardless I am still using it to share some fantastic news! A new video upload *hears roaring crowd cheering* Thank you, thank you :)

As we all know Black Friday is one of the most popular days to start holiday shopping, yet unlike most shoppers I decided to dig at a local thrift shop to score some major bargains. My local Salvation Army had a 50% off all clothing sales and I definitely snagged a few goodies.  5 pieces for $15! Craziness!!! And my hubby had scored a few items from Club Monaco online. Here's my video and don't forget to "thumbs up"



Ironically my hubby decided to return the bag after I filmed, so he told me to buy whatever I wanted to replace his original order. I'll film another video when that package arrives. Wee!!!


How did you spend your Black Friday?


Yours Truly,

Irene