Monday, May 18, 2015

Blackberry Mango Smoothie Recipe


Perhaps it's been the arrival of Spring and some better temperatures out there that have my smoothie a week becoming a smoothie a day! It could have something to do with the delivery of my new Chefman blender, complete with cups sized out for individual needs! I'm not sure really, but regardless they are all I can think about when I first wake up in the morning. I often go for one that has some kale for iron or something with protein in it for energy. The one I'm sharing today is nothing like that at all though. Indeed it's actually the sweet tropical sort because it was one of those desert for breakfast kind of days here.


Considering how I've just pegged this to be a desert, you must think I loaded it up with sugar, but the opposite is true. The natural sweetness from the mango and a little something from the greek yogurt have this tasting just as divine without the added calories. So no need for sweetners here at all in my opinion. If you do like a very sweet smoothie, you can always add a bit of honey to keep it healthy, light and tasty.  



Blackberry Mango Smoothie

Yields: 1 Medium Sized Smoothie 

Ingredients:

10-12 Fresh Blackberries
1/2 Cup Frozen or fresh Mango Chunks
Norman Nonfat Greek Mango Flavored Yogurt- 6 Oz Container
1/2 Cup Pineapple Juice
A Handful Fresh Mint Sprigs

Method:

Blend all of the ingredients in the blender and serve with a dollop of greek yogurt and a blackberry perched on top for garnish. add a mint leaf too if you'd like.

Keep in mind that switching the frozen mango to fresh mango is perfectly fine but then you'll have less of that frozen smoothie effect. If you'd like to then add back the "freeze", toss in a bout 1/3 cup of ice cubes with the rest of the ingredients. 

Thanks so much for stopping by! 

I really hope you will give my Blackberry Mango Smoothie recipe a try! Don't forget to leave me a comment below letting me know what it was like if you do! And feel free to tag me on Instagram or post your photo on my facebook page as well. 

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XX. 
Gigi. 

Monday, May 11, 2015

It's A Boy!


I'm absolutely thrilled to announce the arrival of our beautiful baby boy! Although my actual due date was April 27th, we did a little bit of waiting for him and on Wednesday May 6th at 11:22 AM I became a mom for the second time to the greatest gift I could have ever imagined! We are doing great and are home from the hospital now. My 5 year old is really enjoying his "big brother" status and my husband, their daddy cannot get enough of him. It's only been a few days and yet I feel like it's always been the four of us, one happy family. I am ecstatic to finally be holding him in my arms after feeling him move around inside of me for months and I will be spending every possible minute of time with him, enjoying every special moment and milestone one day at a time. This little tiny being has already brought me so much joy! I truly cannot express how much my love and affection has only grown (if that's even possible) from the moment I got the positive pregnancy test and now as I hold him in my arms. I look forward to watching as he grows. For now though I will be cherishing every little cry, diaper change etc. I am so fortunate to have many amazing people offering their help and support and for that I am ever so grateful! For now, all I need is lots and lots of rest. But, not to worry my blog posts will still be coming at you, I've got you covered. Keep your eyes peeled for great new recipes, cooking tips, beauty reviews and more of my regular. I look forward to sharing many more details about our little guy in the future! 


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Gigi. 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Smashbox Always Sharp Lip Liners Review



Lip liners are a subject just as neglected as blush has been around here. As I explore more makeup products and techniques I've truly learnt what each item is for and why each one is essential. I'd always just stuck to the basic Mac lip liners for the rare occasion I'd apply one and although they do the job, they've never had me overly impressed. I certainly still do not apply a lip liner on a day to day basis since I prefer something quick and easy but have definitely discovered their purpose of late. Upon hearing that Smashbox was releasing lip liners in the Always Sharp style I so adore from their eyeliner line, I didn't rush to give them a try. And now they have become the ones I reach for whenever I am planning on a lip look that will last several hours.  


What Smashbox has to say about them: "Ditch your sharpener but stay sharp! What it is: a long wearing, water resistant liner self-sharpens every time you twist the cap off"  

Continue reading to see exactly what I think of them!


Pigmentation: The color intensity is unbelievable on all three of these shades. This intimating quick and easy application which is just what they are all about.  

Finish: These are certainly of matte finish but not so much so that they absorb all moisture from your lips just after being applied, as those formulations often do. I often top these lip liners with some lip gloss if I am looking for a less matte look, I've worn them both ways though and love each look. 

Formulation and Consistency: Because they are of matte finish, they are certainly on that slightly drier side but they do not pull and tug on the lips as they go on, making application comfortable and hasty.  


Lasting Power: Long wearing is the name of the game with these. I know that there are some people who's lips hold products better and mine are right in between in that aspect. I've only discovered a handful of lip products that actually stay put on my lips through it all for 24 hours or more and these are members of that club for sure! When topped with a gloss they last about half the time as when worn alone or with a matte lipstick and oily food consumed will definitely break them down as it to be expected. Regardless, the long wear aspect is there with these in a big way!

Scent: None that I've noticed, and that's never a bad thing in my opinion since many people are really specific about scents. 

Packaging: I've mentioned how much I adore the twist sharpening design Smashbox created with their Always Sharp EYE liners. The idea is genius, simply twist the cap on and it brings up more of the pencil when necessary and gives the pencil a sharpened tip without having to turn to an additional sharpener. An even, pointed tip is what you get every time! 

Fuchsia

Variations: 16 different shades are offered on the Smashbox website ranging from mauves, browns, pinks, plums and even a gorgeous red! 

Price: $20 is a bit steep in comparison to what's offered at the drugstore but with the lasting power and excellent formulation here, I think the price is quite worth it. 

Violet

Overall: The shade "fuchsia" is my favorite shade amongst those I've tried. It's the perfect pink, not too bright for my complexion but not overly mauve or muted either. It will certainly be a lip shade I sport often throughout Spring and Summer. I honestly can't think of one thing I don't venerate in regards to these lip liners and I certainly can't wait to try many more of the shades available.  

Ruby

Have you given any of these lip liners a try? If you have, what did you think of them? If you haven't do you want to?

Let me know in the comments form, along with any other opinions you may have, I love hearing from readers!


Thanks so much for stopping in! 

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XX. 
Gigi. 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

What's In My Rebecca Minkoff MAB Bag? + Video


Today's post is something a little different. A little more fun. The last time I did one of these was way back when I started my Youtube channel in 2013, so it's definitely about time I do an update. I'm also really excited about my new Rebecca Minkoff MAB (Morning After) Bag which I recently purchased and absolutely love toting around. My every day bag choice is usually one of this size that can literally hold everything I can possibly need to get through a day of work and travel. If I am just going out for the evening or to run errands, I will just grab my wallet or wear a smaller messenger style bag. Watch this weeks youtube video here, to see the specific items I keep in here if you are curious or need ideas of what to pack your bag with. You can also read till the end of the post, where I will insert the video as usual. 


Some of the details I love about this bag: 

The gold hardware, I have always been a fan of the gold and rose gold look in bags, so obviously that detail makes me very happy. 

I also love the large pocket at the front which is perfect for keeping my phone safe and accessible at all times. 

The cobalt blue lining with black polka dots is both adorable and stylish!

The fringed leather pieces hanging from the zippers, although I feel like they may get damaged pretty easily. 


I was reading my last what's in my bag post and noticed some similarities. I'm clearly still carrying the same deodorant (a new one, but the same brand), the same nude lipstick I have cherished and repurchased for years and other basics like sunglasses, headphones and phone chargers. Back then, I used to have a makeup bag in there as well, but I no longer feel it's necessary. Instead, I like to stick to products that last all day and don't require touching up at all. The only makeup I keep in my bag are those lipsticks which I don't often find myself using anyways. I may throw a powder and fluffy powder brush in when summer rolls around and my t-zone gets oily, but besides for that I haven't been carrying around any additional makeup bag. 


Here is what I keep in my bag most of the time and what was in there at the time of the video. Although the contents vary from time to time, this is basically what it usually ends up looking like. 

My Apple Iphone
Sunglasses Case and Sunglasses
Apple Charging Cube and Wire
 Headphones
My Coupon Book
My To Do Lists Notebook
A Water Bottle
Juicy Couture Wallet 
Wipes 
Gum 
Mints
Metro Card
Foldable Hair Brush with Mirror
Victor & Rolf Flower Bomb Roller Ball Perfume
Epipen (Because summer is coming and I'm allergic to bee stings)
 Hand Sanitizer with Aloe  
Sticky Notes Book
Soundlogic XT  Battery Charger
a Pen
A Small Axe Deoderant
Blistex Lip Ointment
Nivea Kiss of Shimmer Radiant Lip Care
*Smashbox Be Legendary Lip Lacquer in "Pink Social" 
Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick in "Nearly There"




I hope you enjoyed getting a little peak into my purse. I feel like I simply carry my daily essentials but I guess that is different for each person and what their day looks like. What do you carry in your bag that you feel is really important in getting you through the day? Let me know in the comments form, I love hearing from you!

               

If you liked this video please let me know by giving it a "thumbs up",  you can also subscribe to my YouTube Channel here.

Thanks so much for stopping by! 

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Gigi. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

26 Sushi & Tapas Kosher Restaurant in Miami Florida, My Review

As a foodie, new restaurants to explore have me just as excited as a recipe of my own that comes out of the oven as perfect as I imagined. This is why planning a trip anywhere involves a whole lot of research and list writing in regards to where we are going to eat. My husband and I had very little time to spend in Miami several weeks ago, but we made good on every single moment. We ate out for Breakfast, Lunch and Supper daily which is something we rarely do when we're home. That's why it's called vacation I guess. Along the way, we came across so many fantastic restaurants although there were also those few that had us a little less impressed as will always be the case. Today, I am talking about one from the former category. At 26, Sushi+Tapas, it was such a fabulous experience from start to finish and the food was honestly better then anything I have ever eaten anywhere. It was the first place we went after getting off the plane and dropping off our bags so you can imagine the traveling had us famished. We ordered ALOT of food and were therefore really able to get a feel of what the place was all about I believe. Please excuse my poor array of iphone photos, I'm still kicking myself for once again forgetting my dslr!  If you are visiting the area, it truly needs to be added to your agenda, from start to finish we were really impressed. 

Here is some of what we had:   


Miso Soup- This was just the thing since my husband was dealing with a serious virus during our entire trip. As of now, no miso soup I have ever had anywhere compares! A real miso soup includes actual cubed tofu, fresh shitake mushroom and herbs of course, an example set for other restaurants, indeed.  


The highlight of our meal and the dish we cannot stop gushing over were these nitro faux scallops! Watching Gordon Ramsey send back scallops not cooked to his liking in Hells Kitchen had me very curious and 26 really hit these on the nail! From the perfect batter, to the fish inside and unique sauce, this is a dish I will never forget. 


One of the only items I was slightly disappointed over was this sunshine salad. I was expecting a lot more from the ginger carrot vinaigrette which should have packed a big punch although I didn't notice any flavors from it at all! Maybe it was a poor choice of ingredients as well, for some they may meld well but for me they fell short. 


Our sushi pick was the Pink Dragon and it lived up to it's exciting name. Perfect, bite sized, tightly rolled pieces are what was served which is just what I like best. No items falling out, no stuffing your face, and a tasty sauce to bring it all together too. 


An environment is also what makes a restaurant experience pleasurable and that was certainly a part of ours. Our waiter was friendly and helpful, the service was expedient and the modern design of the place with an outdoor seating area to boot had me very impressed! 

I also got to have a chat with some of the staff and hear about the history and meaning behind the restaurant and their cuisine which had me embracing the place even further! Another visit to this restaurant the next time I visit the area is definitely in order. There are so many dishes on my list to try and a kids menu is included as well, so we know we'll be covered with that if necessary. 

26 Sushi & Tapas is located on 9487 Harding Avenue in Florida. Phone number- 305-570-2626. Read their online menu here, to see if it is a place you too would enjoy dining.

Have a kosher restaurant you love or are curious about? Let me know which it is in the comments form below as I always enjoy eating in new places!  

Thank you for stopping in!

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XX.
Gigi.
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