StyleCon 2015

This picture of the main stage is from StyleCon's official Instagram profile

I attended the first annual StyleCon convention in Orange County this past weekend. TOPSHOP was a major sponsor so they had a pop up shop there and a ton of beauty companies were also in attendance. I was there as a volunteer not an attendee so I did not really get to experience the event fully. This was a little upsetting at the time because I had planned to walk around and take pictures of the booths and share it here.  While volunteering I was assigned to help with the main stage and to help the panelist and presenters on an off the stage.I was bummed at first that I was not going to get to check out all of the booths, however I think being stationed at the stage was really a blessing in disguise. I was front and center to all of the panel's and I got to hear some amazing conversations about being a blogger and creating an online presence.

One of the first panels I listened to made me roll  my eyes when I first heard what it was called "How to take the perfect selfie" inside I was like great, this is going to be great, beautiful people talking about the pictures they take of themselves. To my surprise it was actually one of the most informative panels of the day. For awhile it did seem to be going the shallow and vain route, but to my delight the conversation took a turn for the better when the audience began to ask questions. I did not know any of the bloggers on this panel, but I fell in love with Lavenda from Lavenda's Closet. She was probably the realest blogger I have ever heard speak about Social Media. She talked about Essena Oniel's campaign "Let's be Game Changers"   and really was trying to convey how important it is as bloggers and internet personalities to be responsible. Responsible about the message we send girls. That our Instagram feeds are part real life part business. Our posts are planned and edited. They generally are not raw. We need to  let people know that. When they asked the panel what they did to grow their Instagram following from the hundreds to the thousands. A few of the panelist's were coy and gave the standard "oh I was consistent with my postings", which i wholeheartedly agree with but it seemed like they had no interest in really sharing what it took. Except for Lavenda, she was honest once again and said "I hustled my ass off" and to me that was amazing to hear. She went on to describe the steps she took to connect with other bloggers and create content for her blog along with discussing how long it took her to grow her following.  It was honest and raw and instantly made me a fan of hers.

Another part of the day that I am grateful I had the opportunity to experience because of where my volunteer duties landed me, was really really seeing some of the bloggers I had loved for so long and seeing how the acted under pressure and around "fans". I found some new amazing ladies to follow and also realized that I needed to UNFOLLOW some of my previous faves. Meeting Kathleen from Carrie Bradshaw Lied was so fun, she was a southern belle with the friendliest personality and meeting Tess Holliday was probably the absolute highlight of my day. Both of those ladies were so sweet to their fans and took the time to connect and converse with everyone. However some ladies were the total opposite, which was really sad to see. Sad to see how ungrateful they seemed  to be to the people who took the time to come to the event and spent their money on tickets just to get a chance to meet these ladies. So sad.

There were so many local bloggers at the event it was great to see how many Orange County gals are blowing it up in the blog-o-sphere! It was so motivational and overall the event seemed like a great success and I was thankful to get to play a small role in it. And it definitely inspired me to attend more events like this in the future. I was bummed out that I did not get to walk around to the vendor booths and snap some pictures for the blogs, but hopefully I can make up for that next year. If you care to, check out #StyleCon on Instagram and @StyleConGirl's tagged pictures to see more of the fun times from the day!

Weekly Goals: II

We had a busy weekend  and it has taken me all week to recover.
Two pumpkin patch trips, with two kids, in two days

It was nice to finally have some fall weather in Orange County so we took
full advantage of that.
Temps will be back in the 80's this weekend and all of next week so even though
it was exhausting, I am glad we took advantage of the weather.

Here is a recap of my goals from last week and the goals
I have set for-what is left of- this week!

Last weeks goals:

1. Costumes: Finished one kids costume! One more to go! 
2. Fitness: Did not happen. Sad face. 
3. Routine: Last week we did so great with this! This week not so much, but our busy weekend through us off.

This weeks goals!

1. Costumes: Finish Bella's costume this week.
2. Christmas list: Yes I know. It is October, but Christmas is 9 weeks away!!
And I have a large family to shop for.
3. Print Pictures: I have a bunch of pictures I have been meaning to get out to people. I need to actually edit them and get them printed out and mailed!

My goals are late this week so I guess that makes them weekend goals!

Yay for being so close to Friday!

Weekly Goals I

This weekend was a weekend of DIY'ing for our little family. 
Isabella was in need of a desk so I stalked Craigslist for a few days and found
this adorable little desk just like the one's Kai and I had when we were in school. 
It needed some big time loving. 

And even though it was 100 degrees in SoCal this weekend (yay Fall!) , we still had a lovely time working on it all together as a little family. Even the littlest little joined in for a few minutes. This was right before he insisted on sitting in a bucket of water and just staring at us sweat.

I have been so busy with the start of the school year. I am back in school along with Isabella starting first grade and it has taken us about two months to adjust.
It seems like we are getting the hang of it. 
Setting weekly goals really helped me this past summer when I was sticking to it so I think I want 
to make it a priority again! 

Here are my goals for the the week! 

1. Costumes: being half way through October, you would think that I would be half way done
with the costumes. Wrong. I need to make serious progress on these by the end of the week, 

2. Fitness: I need to get it moving moving again. This week I want to try and do at
 least 3 mini yoga sessions. 

3. Routine: Keeping a routine is so important! When I do it my week goes by so smoothly. So why don't I do it more often? Umm, probably just laziness.This week I need to make sure the family sticks to a nightly routine. I have way to  much homework to get done to be bargaining with my 6 year old over bed time. 

So that's it. Simple and attainable-I hope. 

Happy Monday! 

An Interview with Ms. Bella

School started at the end of August and my first grader was not to thrilled. This is her first year being in school full time AND having to wear uniform. This year is going to be quite the challenge. Pray for us please!

I have been meaning to sit down and do "start of the year questions" with Bella for a few years now and for one reason or another it just didn't happen.
By the time I would remember it was a few weeks into the school year and I felt like "Egh to late for that" which is silly. 

So when my friend suggested it yesterday, I took it as a sign to just get it done! 

I asked Isabella the questions last night while we were out to dinner and she loved it. She loves attention. She is such a character and I know I will enjoy looking back at the end of the school year and comparing her answers. 

Here is interview with my little:

Q: What is your favorite color?
A: "Blue, purple. Actually,blue. Yes blue."

Q: What is your favorite toy?
A: " My barbie's horse."

Q: What is your favorite fruit?
A: "WATERMELON! with tajin"
 (Tajin is a chili powder/salt seasoning. She puts it on EVERYTHING. Girl likes things spicy. )

Q: What is your favorite food?
A: "Camarones!" 
(Shrimp, but she says it tastes different in Spanish. I don't question it. I just go with it) 

Q: What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
A: "Strawberry and Caramel, but not together" 

Q: What is your favorite TV show?
A: " I don't have one, I watch YouTube"

Q: What is your favorite Movie?
A: "Disney's Descendants" 

Q: What is your favorite animal?
A: "Horses"

Q: What is your favorite song?
A: "Hey there Delilah " (Sigh. She is my baby girl. Scene kid at heart.)

Q: What is your favorite Book?
A: "Skippy Jon Jones: In Outer Space"

Q: Who is your best friend? 
A: "Ceci"

Q: What is your favorite game?
A: "Hopscotch" 

Q: What is your favorite thing to do outside?
A: "Listen to the birds"

Q: What do you want to be when you grow up?
A: " A horse trainer"

Q: What is your favorite thing to do with mommy?
A: " Get our NAILS DONE!"

Q: What is your favorite thing to do with daddy?
A: " Race each other!"

Q: What is your favorite thing to do with Maka?
A: " Play ball/ catch, because that's all he can do"

Q: What makes you feel sad? 
A: "When people say rude things and hurt my feelings"

Q: What makes you feel happy?
A: " Making everyone else happy!"

Q: What is your favorite thing about your birthday?
A: "Getting to see all of my friends and family"

The last answer  made my heart so happy and very proud to be her mamma, because honestly I thought she was going to say "PRESENTS". 

These fun back to school pictures are from a session we had with the very talented Gayle Dawn

Happy back to school! 

Curious Makaio's First Birthday

Makaio turned one!
We had a birthday party for him a few weeks after his actual birthday, 
Having kids with their birthday's two weeks apart is tough guys. 
Especially when you love to throw a party for every occasion like I do. 

I rarely get a chance to take pictures of my parties, simply because on the actual day of parties I am pretty much a lunatic who is walking around all day like a chicken without its head. 

I am so grateful for my friends who always have my back and help me out with setting up, cleaning up and TAKING PICTURES. 
I promise to return the favor when y'all have your own kiddos! 

Just a warning-there are A LOT of pictures in this post. Sorry, but not sorry. 

We (and by we I mean ME) decided on a "Curious George Circus" theme. 
The little guy is obsessed with that monkey so it was perfect. 

My friend Christina made the cute little birthday banner with the "big tops" on it. 
She shipped it all the way from Germany for me, and it was perfect for the cake table! 
( She has a cute little Etsy shop, and makes fun custom banners!) 

I knew I wanted to do the usual first birthday thing- one picture for every month of the first year. 
Except I did not fully think it through. 
I printed the pictures I posted on Instagram at Costco 
because they are amazing and do 5x5 prints now! 
Then I just put them on some scrapbook paper and taped- yes taped with packaging tape
 (because I am the worst) onto some circus themed ribbon I had purchased. 
It was last minute but totally worked and I was pretty happy with it. 

My sister got Makaio this adorable circus-esque  cake from Sam's club. 
Yes, Sam's club. They do tiered cakes now! 
It was fun and colorful and delicious. 

My little man looked so adorable in his Curious George shirt. 
 That I also put together last minute.

I saw so many cute shirts/first birthday outfits on Etsy that were Curious Monkey themed, 
But I just didn't have the time for it to get here. I waited to long to try and order one. 
Boo me. I was still pretty proud of what I came up with. 

It was a beautifully sunny and scorching HOT day. 
I believe it was like 90 degrees ALL DAY. 
I had some water balloons for the kids to play with to keep cool. 
I am super paranoid about wasting water with this drought we are having and all. 
However the kids needed the cool down. So I convinced myself that it was a valid use of water. 

Who wants cranky, sticky, hot kids at a birthday party. Not I! 

Yup. Made that boy some matching shorts to go with his shirt! 

I think Maka's favorite part of the day was getting to sit in that rubbermaid container,
 when it was filled with water. 
Typical kid. Mom and dad through him a huge party. 
He is perfectly content just sitting in a tub of water. 
Not even a real tub, a storage container. 

I had grand plans of having "booths"  like a carnival and having a game 
in each one with prizes and stuff for the kids. 
Then life happened. I did not get around to it, but the things we did have were a hit with the kids. 

Jumpers are always a win with everyone.
I don't understand children, it was a million degrees  out and they still had the time of their lives jumping around in sauna like jumper. 

I loved this "big-top" tent from Ikea!

My friend Christina (diff. Christina-not banner Christina) lent us her Jumbo Jenga 
( aren't you proud of me Christina I stopped calling it adult Jenga!) 
That is always a hit. I have borrowed it enough that I need to just make my own. 
End of summer goal. 

Daddy Kai made a cute little Curious George cutout for our guests to take pictures with. 
It was a hit. Anytime we have photobooth the kids (and adults) love it. 

We tried getting some pictures of the family with birthday boy. 
He was not about it. Not at all. 

We also did the piñata thing. 
Makaio was ready for a nap so he was not so interested in the piñata happenings. 
He tried and hit it a few times so A+ for effort little guy. 

Look at those savages knocking each other down for candy. 
What you don't see in this picture is the rush of adults that were heading 
to participate in this candy mosh pit. 

They did this with zero shame. 
It's the mexican candy, it makes them crazy. 

My lovely Bella girl, who I am so proud of. She is doing so good with sharing the spotlight with her brother. She is the #1 DIVA, so this is a big step for her. 
She enjoyed spoiling her brother with attention on his special day. 

I got to see friends! I miss my friends, we are all so busy these days with 
life and jobs that make us travel. 
It was nice to see everyone. 
My friends are a huge part of my kids lives so my heart was so happy. 

 Makaio's godmother got him some drums for his birthday. 
He is in love. This boy is going to be a musician I know it. 

Love these little cherubs. I could kiss them all day. 

In addition to the circus cake, this little guy got his own personal smash cake. 
As one year old babes often do. 

He completely destroyed the one we gave him on his actual birthday, 
and this cake suffered the same fate. 
Baby Hulk smashed that cake. It had no chance. 

Sheer joy. Look at the utter joy on that boys face. 
All the cake. He wanted it all. 

He got the cake everywhere, It was glorious. 

Look. at. those. lips. 

After all of that cake came a quick shower in his Nana's kitchen sink and a fresh set of clothes. 
(Making this his 3rd wardrobe change for the day) 
As soon as we got him changed and a gave him a bottle he was out for a little mid party siesta. 

Hey there cutie with your little man bun. Love. 

The nap did not last long. 
He could hear all of us continuing on with the party and he needed to join in. 

After most of our guests left,he finally got a chance to take a picture
with the cutout. 

It was adorbs. Duh. 

The party was so fun but so exhausting.  I loved being able to see my friends and family. 
Birthdays are the best excuse to get together which makes me so happy. 

Kyle, Isabella, Makaio and I are so blessed to be loved by so many and surrounded by so much joy. 
While having two birthday parties SO close to each other was a challenge and draining I am really glad that I have a full year off. 

Thank you to everyone who helped me with decorating, setting up, food prep, taking pictures 
and cleaning up. 
It truly takes a village, and I am so grateful for mine. 

Weekly Wishes 7

This weekend was exactly what I needed. My little guy turned one on Friday. We had a birthday breakfast at home for him before Kai and I went to work. It was so nice to spend the morning together celebrating our boy. Later in the evening we went out for pizza and cake with his godparents. It was fun and happy times until he pooped all over me and ruined a perfectly good sweater. Oh the joy's of parenthood. 

Goal setting is definitely a priority this summer. There a ton of projects I want to accomplish so my weekly list should help with that! 

Last weeks Goals:
1.   Blog more.  I did blog one more time last week and worked on a few different posts for the next few weeks. So I would say I did accomplish this!  

  2. Organize. Yes! I made a budget and listed the decorations i have left to make/purchase. Now I just need a day of schedule and to actually get the goods I ordered in so I can finish making the decor! 

3. Snail Mail.  Nope. I was unable to get to this, however I plan to get the fathers day cards out by tomorrow.  

My Goals this week:
1.   Put together birthday decor.  I need to make tissue poms, birthday hats & tissue tassels. Hopefully this can be done by Friday so It is done by the weekend. 

  2. Fathers Day gifts. Father's day is this WEEKEND. I still have not purchased gifts for the dads in my life! So behind schedule. Having two birthday parties so close together is so hard. 

3. No eating out.  I guess to be specific, no eating out at work. I need to actually make my shakes the rest of the week for breakfast and pack some lunch for the week. I spend way to much on eating out during the week so it is time to reel it in! 

Happy Tuesday! 

My talented friend Cynthia of Cynthia Warden Photography took the pictures of Makaio last week! I can not wait to get the rest of the images back! 

Succulent Saturday

This past weekend Kai and I finally took a trip out to OC Succulents. I had been wanting to go for a few weeks  months now. However with him working Saturday's almost every week and well having a baby who is demanding and walking around in the heat, I just kept putting it off  until we were able to go together. 
So grateful that Kai wrangled the kiddos while I looked around!

They had awesome reviews on Yelp and I had been itching to get some new succulents and check out their air plant collection. 

I loved the bright blue stones! Reminded me of little lily pads in water. 

My friend Karissa got me on this air plant kick, she got a few for her wedding bouquet this last November and I fell IN LOVE. However the selection at OC Succulents was underwhelming and a little bit pricey. I am going to order some on etsy next month and see how that goes. 

These are my forever favorite

I first fell in love with succulents about 4 years ago when Kai and I moved into our first place and we picked some up at Home Depot. A plant I couldn't kill was what I was looking for! And guess what? 4 years later, I still have the same plants and they have made plenty of babies for me! 

Miss Bella,  eager to be my model for the day. 

At first the selection was a tad overwhelming for me. Since well, of course I didn't  arrive with a plan I wasn't quite sure where to begin. 

The staff was very knowledgeable and friendly! And Isabella had a blast running between the tall tropical plants they had out. 

I ended up just picking up a few plants since I wasn't sure when I would have the time to sit down and put a few new arrangements together. Next time I go I will probably already have the pots I plan to fill chosen out and painted so I know what colors/style/size I need to buy.  One of my summer goals this year is to actually sit down and put together some nice arrangements for the front yard. It is part of plan/determination to spend more time outside with the kids on the weekends. I am thinking of buying some books on succulent arrangements. I KNOW it isn't rocket science, but I am always inspired by other peoples work and pictures so I think it will be a nice addition to my library. 

This coming Sunday should be slow for us so I plan on planting the few I picked up on Saturday then! 

Weekly Wishes 6

Umm, wow, it has been 2 months since I did a weekly wishes entry. 
I kept telling myself every week that I would get to it, then it would be Thursday or Friday and would 
just figure, "heck it is to late in the week, I will do it again next week!" 
Then that lovely cycle would continue week after week. 
It feels good to be back at it! Hopefully I can keep it going consistently again! 

This weekend was a busy one. We paid a visit to our local succulent nursery and stocked up on some new plants and we also  attended a graduation celebration for my baby cousin! 

We also had a photo session for Makaio's FIRST birthday! I  can not believe my boy will be one on Friday. 

Joining in on Weekly Wishes over at The Nectar Collective!  
*Apparently this ended at the end of April. Clearly I have not been keeping up. Oh Well! Still planning on keeping up with a early week goal setting session! *

My Goals this week:
1.   Blog more. I need to blog at least two more times this week. Maybe making a schedule or something will help. I know the more consistently I post, the sooner it will become second nature. 

  2. Organize. My son's birthday party is coming up at the end of this  month, and I really need to organize my projects and budget for it. This way I am not up until 2 am the night before working on things! 

3. Snail Mail.  Father's day is around the corner, I need to make sure to pick some cards up and mail out the cards from the kiddos to their uncles & grandpa's. Also need to get out a mini care package to my cousin for her birthday! 

I figure for the first week back at it, I won't set to many goals.
Ease back into it!

Happy Monday! 

Pineapple & Flamingo Party!

 I may have a slight obsession with pineapple's and flamingo's and I might have passed that obsession on to my daughter. 

Her 6th birthday is coming up at the end of May and when I asked her what theme she wanted to go with she enthusiastically said a "Pineapple Party mom!" as we talked about it  we talked about incorporating our love of the "pink bird" and  the theme sort of just evolved. Of course I did my usual Pinterest board stalking to find different idea's.  I have found so many adorable ideas, like the fun summer party over at Kelly Golightly ( I am in LOVE with her retro style!) and fun and sparkly pineapple garland from TomCat Studio!

I always find myself searching in the archives of Studio DIY, OhGoodieDesigns, Style Me Pretty and the Hostess with the Mostess! for party inspo. They had some great tropical themes for me to get idea's from. 

I love making my own inspiration boards so I can print them out and keep them on my desk to keep the party on my mind and to keep me inspired, along with Pinterest it is a great way to organize my parties! I love PICASA! It is free and I was able to create this fun collage with minimal effort. 

It started off as a tropical luau type of idea but I find myself heading more towards the vintage palm springs meets retro miami trailer park. Ha. It is supposed to be a simple and small party because  planning two birthday parties within three weeks of each other is going to be tough! So I am starting early. My little brain is going crazy with ideas for the invitations. so many idea's I love and I can not decide on anything final. 

Hopefully I can get those done and a list completed of ideas I want to use for sure by the end of  this week! 

Weekly Wishes Week 5

So I have totally fallen behind and become a slacker in life. These last two weeks have kicked my butt. There has been so much personal stuff getting me down. One of my closest friends is entering a very challenging time in her life and it something she needs for personal growth and health, and  in talking to her about her situation I have reflected on my own. Life is crazy, it is insane how you can feel so on top of the world one moment and the next completely defeated.  I am at a crossroads with so much at the moment, work, school, friends & love.  I am choosing to surround myself with lots of light and love this week to get me back to a happier place.  

Celebrating Easter with my family and the kids was a great way to start. We had a blast hanging at my parents house, cooking great food and catching up. The kids loved their baskets and I loved seeing their happy little faces when they were going through them. We didn't make it to mass which made me a little sad, so I am definitely going to try and make it this weekend. I know that will help shift the mental state I am in. 

 Excited to join in on Weekly Wishes over at The Nectar Collective
I think having set goals to get done by Monday will be helpful. This funk is no bueno.

Last weeks goals (well 2 weeks ago!):

..  Make alone time for Kai and I.Not really. We got alone time but it wasn't time to focus on us, we were busy getting things together for kiddos. So this is def. still a priority for this week! 

2.   Cut my soda intake! Yes! I really have not had much soda other than Easter Sunday and well today. I need to just tell myself no more across the board so that I break the habit. 

3.  Follow through with school.Ugh, no! They were on spring break so nobody was there for me to schedule anything. 

My Goals this week:
1.   Get my groove back. Get to the gym, kiss the babies and Kai like crazy, cook a yummy meal. Meet with a friend. ANYTHING to help me. 

  2. Finish sewing projects. I have to baby gifts i have been meaning to work on and I have yet to actually get it done. I have the fabric time to get sewing! Especially because one is for a baptism this weekend! Yikes!   

3. Tend to my succulents. They are growing like crazy and overflowing from their current containers, so I need to give them some love and move them/separate them this weekend. 

4.  Write some letters. I need to send my pen pal a long letter apologizing for my neglect! Also I want to get a packet together for my girlfriend who will be spending some time away from home for a bit while she works on her. 

I hope this weekend brings about healthier and happier times!

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