Pineapple, Carrot Smoothie

I recently ordered a subscription to Paleo Magazine.  I’m not planning to become a strict Paleo dieter as I can’t imagine chilli without beans, but I’m always interested in different diets and healthy eating.  Plus, I’m looking for new recipes that incorporate whole foods vs. packaged foods.

While flipping through the magazine, I found a recipe for a Pineapple, Carrot Smoothie.  I liked the sound of it and went shopping for the ingredients.

Pineapple Carrot Smoothie Ingredients

Pineapple Carrot Smoothie Ingredients

Pineapple Carrot Smoothie:  Makes one large glass
from the June/July 2015 issue of Paleo Magazine

1 frozen banana
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1 medium carrot or 1/2 cup baby carrots
1 tbs hemp seeds
1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
1/4 tsp grated orange zest ( I zest half an orange then squeeze the juice into the smoothie )
pinch of cinnamon
1/2 coconut milk ( can use coconut water and a splash of almond milk )
1/2 cup water ( may need a more water or coconut water for blending )

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Cheers!!

Pineapple Carrot Smoothie

Pineapple Carrot Smoothie

I’ve probably had this smoothie every day for the past five days.  The smoothie is so fresh and delicious that I can’t stop making it.

Hope you give it a try.

Monica.

My new denim jean shorts for .91 cents

This weekend I paid 91 cents for these Tommy HIlfiger jean shorts.  I was lucky enough to have a $25 Macy’s Star Rewards Certificate, so that amount handled most of the cost.

The jean shorts were $49.50, and due to a sale, 20% off, so that brought the price down to $23.99.  With tax, the jeans were $25.91 and I used the $25 gift certificate.  That left me owing .91 cents.

Macy’s no longer offers Star Rewards as they have changed their rewards program to Plenti, but I am holding on to one more $25 certificate ~ whoo hoo!  What to buy, what to buy?

Although these shorts are a straight fit through hip and thigh, the shorts fit my pear shape really well as there is a slight stretch to the denim.  The waist is mid rise, so it falls just below my natural waist line.

Weekend outfit

Weekend outfit

I’m wearing:
Sunglasses,  Coach from Coach Outlet Online
Off We Go Tee (size large, runs small), ModCloth
Tommy Hilfiger Shorts (size 10), Macy’s
Canvas Wedge Sandals (similar), Target

Hope you had a happy summer weekend!

Cheers,
Monica

Christie Brinkley Complete Clarity Daily Facial Exfoliating Polish

I recently purchased Christie Brinkley’s Complete Clarity Daily Facial Exfoliating Polish after seeing her interview on the Dr. Oz show.

At 61 years young, she credits her anti aging secrets to being grateful, eating a vegetarian diet, taking probiotics, exfoliating her face daily, and using a moisturizing lotion with SPF.  Those are fairly simple rules to live by and along with her good genetics, she has maintained her beautiful appearance.

I found the face polish to be lightly abrasive with a fresh floral scent.  The exfoliating beads are made of lactic acid and the product also contains salicylic acid which gave my face a bit of a tingle when applied.

Christie Brinkley Package Waste

Christie Brinkley Package Waste

When opening the box, I was surprised to see so much package waste.  The tube is 3 oz and it would have been nice to design a box to fit the tube.

Nicely sealed

Nicely sealed

I did enjoy finding the tube of polish fully sealed.  There are far too many sticky fingers out there, “trying before you buy” and it ruins the product for other buyers.

Christie Brinkley Polish Swatch

Christie Brinkley Polish Swatch

Overall, I like the polish and I think it was a good purchase, but not a must have or repeat purchase.  There are so many scrub type products on the market that once I’ve finished this product, I’ll move on to something else.

What is your favorite facial scrub?

Cheers,
Monica.

Athletic outfit featuring Capri Pants by Lorna Jane

I have been interested in athletic clothing from Lorna Jane since I first spotted the store front in the Fashion Valley Mall in San Diego.  When I first visited Lorna Jane, I mentioned to the sales associate that I had never heard of the brand. The sales associate told me that it’s an Australian brand and that the founder, Lorna Jane, created the line because she found women’s athletic clothing dull and uninspiring.  That was 15 years ago and the brand has grown and expanded in the US.

Luckily, there is a Lorna Jane store front located on El Paseo in Palm Desert.  I stopped by to find a pair of capri leggings.  The sales gal was really helpful and gave me three pairs to try.  I purchased the Lila Core Stability 7/8 Tights in a size large.

LILA CORE STABILITY 7/8 TIGHT

Lila Core Stability 7/8 Stability Tight | Lorna Jane

These athletic capri’s are probably the best pair I’ve ever owned, because not only are these a pair of fitness pants, but they also behave like shapewear.  Now, I’m no huge fan of shape wear, but for gym bottoms, my preference is for the lower half to be firmer than it really is, while I work on making things firmer.  Yes, I’m nuts.

Anyway, after I took off the capri’s I noticed this red dot on the inside of the pant leg and upon further inspection I noticed it was a little heart.  How cute.  At first I thought it was a security tag, but the Lorna Jane web site said that the heart lets the buyer know that the product was made with love.  Awww, too sweet.

Made with Love | Lorna Jane

Made with Love | Lorna Jane

I also want to mention the cost of the Lorna Jane capris because they were not cheap.  I paid $95.99 and yes, totally expensive for workout clothing.  However, I consider these athletic pants as an investment in my health and well being.

If you are looking for a less expensive pair of fitness capri’s I recommend the C9 Champion Curved Cuff Capri Legging, $24.99 at Target.  I was lucky enough to find a size large at the store, but a size large is hard to find so I recently ordered a second pair online.  These capris don’t have the same compression as the Lorna Jane’s, but they are a good fit and I felt confident wearing these to the gym.

On to the rest of the athletic outfit …

Fila Racerback Tank (Kohl's) | Lila Core Stability 7/8 Tight (Lorna Jane) | GoWalk Fuse (Sketchers)

Fila Racerback Tank (Kohl’s) | Lila Core Stability 7/8 Tight (Lorna Jane) | GoWalk Fuse (Sketchers)

For a top, I’m wearing the Fila Sport Racerback Workout Tank in Summer Bloom from Kohl’s.  I have two other similar tanks and I really like this style.  The tank is fairly long and the moisture wicking material keeps me cool.  This top also comes in pretty solid colors and unique prints.

GoWalk Fuse in Navy/Coral (Skethers)

GoWalk Fuse in Navy/Coral (Skechers)

I am officially obsessed with the Go Walk Fuse athletic shoes from Sketchers.  These are my second pair, (first pair here) and I love the goga mat foot bed which is ultra comfortable.  I wouldn’t recommend these shoes for running, but for walking and a weight workout – these shoes are great.

So that’s pretty much what I’ve been wearing to the gym.  What do you usually wear for your workouts?

Cheers,
Monica

Link Up:
Alice – Happiness at Mid LIfe, Nicole – High Latitude Style, Dawn – Fashion Should Be Fun

Lorna Jane Active Living – Shop Now

Fit & Flare dress from TJ Maxx

Lola Fit & Flare Dress by AFG | TJ Maxx

Lola Fit & Flare Dress by AFG ( TJ Maxx ) | White Sandals ( Naturalizer, no longer available )

I love shopping at TJ Maxx as I never know what I’ll find.  Since I’ve been in the desert this summer, I’ve been looking in the dress section lately.  It’s delightfully warm here (most would say it’s darn hot here), but I really love the warm days and clear skies.

This fit and flare dress from Lola by AFG was hanging on a sparsely populated rack.  Since the dress was a medium, I thought I’d try the dress on ~ you never know ~ it may fit.

Slimming empire waist line

Slimming empire waist line | Similar dress:  Life’s Good Cross over floral dress

The dress is made of 92% polyester and 8% spandex so it holds its shape and doesn’t wrinkle.  I found this sporty dress really comfortable and easy to run around town for various errands.

Lola Dress (TJ Maxx | Sunglasses, old (Kohls)

Lola Dress ( TJ Maxx ) | Sunglasses, Daisy Fuentes ( similar Circle Rimless sunglasses at Kohl’s )

July is flying by, hope you’re out and about enjoying your summer.

Cheers,
Monica

 

 

Summer days in Palm Desert, CA

I am having the best summer.  I’m finally in a super warm climate, out of a cold office environment and I couldn’t be happier.

First let’s chat about these fun seaside flip flops from Payless Shoes.  I purchased three pairs: black, silver and white.  These are great for the pool or beach and are oh, so cheap ~ only $7. Only down fall is that these flip flops only come in whole sizes and although they are quite comfortable there is no real padding in the foot bed so these are not good for a long day of walking.

Seaside Flip Flops | Payless Shoe Source

Seaside Flip Flops | Payless Shoe Source

And for something a little different, I took a short video of my view from our lounge pool float. Note to self … turn iphone horizontal while filming ( I’m such a novice! ).

I hope you are having a great summer too.

Cheers,
Monica

Linking up with:
Alice, Happiness at mid life
Nicole, High Latitude Style

 

Red, white and blue maxi dress

Daisy Fuentes Maxi Dress | Kohl's

Daisy Fuentes Maxi Dress, Size Medium | Kohl’s ( check store, not available online )

This week while shopping at Kohl’s, I came across this red, white and blue dress.  I tried it on, thought it looked pretty good and made my purchase.  I didn’t intentionally buy the dress for the July 4th holiday, it just seemed to work out that way.  You may notice that I don’t wear a lot of dresses on my blog.  I like dresses, but as a pear shaped gal, it’s usually a challenge to find a dress that fits properly.  For example, a size 8 dress is too tight in the hips, and a size 10 is too large on top.

MaxiDress_Kohls

Daisy Fuentes Maxi Dress | Kohl’s

This dress really works for a gal with a pear shape.  The navy blue top is a stretchy cotton material that fits close to the body without any gaps while moving.  The stretch empire waist fits right under the bust line which allows the rayon skirt to flow over the hips.  The skirt moves nicely while walking, but it’s a bit long. I had to gather the skirt in my hands to avoid tripping on the hem line, so I will probably have the length shortened.

Blue cloth wedges | Payless

Blue canvas wedges | Payless

The blue canvas wedges are from the Montego Bay Club line at Payless Shoes and were purchased a few years ago.  I like Payless for sandals.  Summer shoes should be fun, not expensive.

If you’re in the USA, I hope you have a super fun July 4th.  If you’re in a global location, then I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Cheers,
Monica

Linking up with Dawn, Fashion Should Be Fun

Other dresses that I’d like to check out:

NYDJ Crop Denim Pants

My husband arrived at our desert house yesterday after a month long work trip to Singapore. Once my husband is back in California, he’s pretty much done with eating Asian cuisine and he’s all about going out for a good steak.  So last night we went out for a steak dinner and I threw on this simple outfit.

NYDJ Crop Jeans

NYDJ Crop Jeans, Size 8 | Nordstrom

I love NYDJ for the pear shape as these jeans fit me like a glove.  I also love the silver rivet design on the side.  This small detail gives the pants a dressier look and makes them perfect for a casual evening out.

I purchased the crop jeans last year so this style is not available.  However, if the rivets aren’t your thing, the Nanette Stretch Crop Jeans in black are a more classic style.  These jeans have the side slit opening without embellishment.

Other items that I’m wearing are older pieces and it’s always good to simply wear what you have sometimes :-)

Top: Racer back tee from Dalia (think I purchased at TJ Maxx)
Cardigan:  Simply Vera Wang (Kohl’s), similar style, Chiffon Fly Away Cardigan
Wedges: Bass

Cork Wedges | Bass

Cork Wedges | Bass

Cheers,
Monica

Linking up with:
Alice, Happiness at Mid-Life
Nicole, High Latitude Style

Laura Geller Highlight Blush Bronze Sculpt Palette

Baked Color & Contour Palette by Laura Geller

Baked Color & Contour Palette by Laura Geller

I purchased the Laura Geller baked contour trio in May while on vacation in Helena, Mt.  I only brought minimal travel type makeup and I quickly became bored with the same makeup after a few weeks.  Once I found Ulta, I was a kid in a candy store.  I was really missing some type of contour makeup item and I wanted something in a palette.  I looked at the It Cosmetics Vitality Face Disc and the Laura Geller Contour Palette.  Both brands have hit and miss products for me, but what won me over was that the Laura Geller trio was … just … so …. pretty!

Baked Color & Contour | Laura Geller

Baked Color & Contour | Laura Geller

Ok, it’s pretty, but does it work?  Is it a good product? I’d say .. yes!  If .. you like a light look.  The goal of this product is to enhance your facial features, not really chisel your facial structure. There are numerous matte contour palettes that will define and shade facial features.  This product gives a brightening, but soft look to the skin.

Trio in the sunlight

Trio in the sunlight

Trio in the shade

Trio in the shade

The tricky shade in the palette is the marbled section.  The color pay off depends on how you swirl your brush in this section and I think the smaller the brush, the better.  I use the Elf Studio Angle Brush and this brush seems to apply and blend the product perfectly.

I’d also like to say that the palette overall is fairly solid.  I managed to drop the palette on the hard wood floor and after a howling .. noooooooooooooo!!  I opened the palette to find the product perfect with the exception of the closure tab which snapped off.  Oh, well the product is still usable, I just need to secure the palette with a rubber band when traveling :-)

Have you tried makeup by Laura Geller?

Cheers,
Monica

Denim on denim

I have much envy for all the blog posts about denim on denim looks, but I really didn’t know if I could pull it off.  While getting dressed, I kept putting on various black blazers, then black sweaters and nothing “looked” right.  Then I put on a chambray shirt that I have from Eddie Bauer and waddya know ~ I works!

Denim on denim

Denim on denim

For jeans, I have on the Ex-boyfriend jeans from Style & Company (Macy’s).  These jeans are fairly forgiving with a little weight gain as they have a bit of stretch to them.

Eddie Bauer Chambray Shirt | J Crew Factory Tee

Eddie Bauer Chambray Shirt | J Crew Factory Tee | Necklace from Francesca

My tee is new from J Crew Factory ( Striped Photo Collector Tee ).  The tee is described as “airy cotton” and they aren’t kidding because this t-shirt material is quite thin.  I really liked the graphic so I bought it, but not sure I’d recommend this particular tee.

The chambray shirt is from Eddie Bauer and although they don’t carry this particular shirt, they do have a boyfriend long sleeve shirt in a tencel material.

Merona Wedges from Target

Merona Wedges from Target

The black wedge sandals are from Target.  They are sold out of this style, but the Quarter Strap Wedges are similar.  I love these sandals – they are super comfortable and easy to walk in. The jute covered wedge and the black cloth material give the shoes an updated espadrille look. I think these wedges are fabulous for summer.

I’d love to pair these wedges with a cute maxi dress.  I better get shopping.  By the time I find a maxi dress that fits, summer will be over 😛

Cheers,
Monica

Linking up with Alice over at Happiness at Mid-Life and Nicole at High Latitude Style