Thursday, December 15, 2011

How To Look Fab in Less than 10

Aaahh! So you wake up frantic, your clock reads 7:55 am and you're supposed to be at work by 8 o'clock. What does your instinct tell you? "Grab the first thing you see, put your hair in a messy ponytail, and forget about your makeup, cause girl you aint got time!" Am I right? Well at least that's what MY instinct tells me. However, I learned (with time and by reading blogs) that you don't have have to appear as if you woke up in a fright. Here are a couple of the tips;

*Took these pictures at work, during a break, so don't mind any random items in the back*

1. Twirl a front section (or your bangs) and secure with a bobby pin to the side of your head.

2.) Twirl all of your hair and coil it to the side of your head, fastening it with a couple of bobby pins or an elastic.

3. Wait a bit; During this time you can apply your makeup (see below) or can be driving to work. This is in total should have taken you less than 2 minutes

4. Now once you have let your hair "curl" for a bit, undo the side bun (adjusting the twirled front section to your liking) which should leave you with slightly curled ends for a more polished look.

At this point you could leave your hair like this, which would look similar to Ms. Garner's hair below (I completely forgot to take a picture of my WHOLE hair) but a little less textured.

BUT if you don't want hair in your face (let's say it's raining or a windy day) you could keep going onto step 5.

5. Go ahead and tease your hair lightly at the crown with your fingers, and grab all of your hair into a ponytail. Once it is in a ponytail, secure with an elastic and grab a piece from underneath your ponytail and wrap it around the elastic (to hide it). Secure with either a bobby pin, or by securing it into the elastic.


Who masters the neutral-im not trying-pretty -chic make up look for me?
Whitney Port, hands down. The picture above is what you're going for.
(Maybe a little less blush LOL)

Forget about your smokey eye or any heavy lipstick; you won't find any of that here. Here is my 4 minute (or somewhere around there) routine that helps me when I'm on the run.

1. Put on a light moisturizer to prep your face: No matter how much you might want to skip this step, dont. Applying a moisturizer will revive your skin, making you look fresh and awake. Let it sit for about 30 seconds (I would usually say let it soak into your skin for 3 min but given the circumstances...) Lately, I've been using NouriFusion for Herbalife Normal to Oily Moisturizer. Clinique Acne Solutions Moisturizer is also a great one.
45 seconds

2. Put on a bit of tinted moisturizer or foundation: Make sure you blend adequately and set it lightly with a powder. I like Covergirl's NatureLuxe Foundation since its pretty lightweight (which smells good, might be the cucumber) or MaryKay's Tinted Moisturizer. Don't forget to set with a pressed powder. I like Dream Matte Powder by Maybelline or MaryKay's Loose Powder.
1 minute

3. Blush: Choose a peachy pink color or a light rose & apply to the apples of your cheeks. My favorite all time blush is by Bare Minerals in the color Poppy.
15 seconds

4. Eyes: Apply a base for your eyeshadow such as Mac's paint pot in Soft Ocher or Groundwork (my fave) Apply a taupe or brown eyeshadow to the your lids using a flat shadow brush. (You can find really good quality neutral palettes with NYX, Milani, or ULTA brands) Finally apply a a line of liquid eyeliner on your top lashes, and add mascara! My favorite mascara at the moment is Loreal's Voluminous in Carbon Black.
2 minutes
5. Last but not least; exfoliate your lips quickly by brushing a toothbrush (or with a lip scrub) over your lips for a few seconds to get rid of any dead skin and nastiness. Apply a lip balm: I like C.O Bigelow's Rose Salve or Burt's Bees Mango Butter Lip Balm. None leave too much color, just a nice sheen. & since the exfoliation you did earlier circulated the blood in your lips, there really isin't a need for too much color, since your lips will already have a natural one!
20 seconds seconds

Total: 4 minutes & 20 seconds (give or take)


I have only 1 tip when it comes to picking out clothes when running late:

1. Always have an Emergency (neutral) outfit hanging ready in your closet.
What I mean by this is to find a flattering shirt or blouse and a pair of nice fitting slacks or jeans, or a flowy dress layered with a cardigan; pieces that are in simple patterns and neutral colors; Have them washed and ironed, so they are ready to be worn & keep the outfit hanging in your closet at all times, so when it so happens that you wake up late, you won't even have to worry about what to wear.

My go to choice?

a cardigan, slacks or jeans, and a tank top.

Never fails! Looks effortlessly chic and put together

So there you have it...a few tips to those hectic days that seem to happen when we least need them to. What are your tips? Is there anything you do that saves you time?

<3 Stef

Monday, December 12, 2011

"Life is not about finding yourself, but about
creating yourself."

George Bernard Shaw

Friday, December 9, 2011

All Aboard... The Pesto Train!

Being an "occasional" vegetarian, (as in I sometimes indulge in chicken or fish) often leads me to always be on the lookout for easy meat free recipes. On a recent trip to Fresh and Easy (which i love!) I saw they had premade tomato & mozzarella pasta with pesto which looked amazing! However, I remembered that one of pesto's major ingredients is Parmesan cheese. && me being the picky eater that I am, cannot stand Parmesan cheese. & as you can tell by the picture above I decided to take a chance & make it on my own. I pulled out my iPhone && looked up a recipe, then grabbed any ingredients that I didn't have, and went home. To my surprised my pasta came out pretty amazing. Not bragging of course LOL, but I truly was proud of myself and the final outcome. As usual, I tweak recipes to my liking and to satisfy my needs, so this recipe may not be the traditional one that is often used. Either way, I simply could not keep something so awesome to myself, so below is my recipe for super easy, vegetarian, pesto-ey, tomato & mozzarella pasta goodness! (:

To Make the Pesto:

1. Take [a handful of the spinach (right hand side), a few leaves of basil (left hand side; i put in less than what is shown), juice of 1/2 a lemon, chopped onions (add as much as you desire, depends on how strong you want the onion to taste. I personally love onions so i added about a quarter of a large one), a clove of garlic (more or less), 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt & pepper.] and place it all in your food processor, magic bullet, or whatever knock-off you have.

2. Blend it for about 20-30 seconds, depending on how chunky you want it.

3. Transfer the pesto in a container and then place in the refrigerator, so it can cool.

**Personally, I don't measure much. I like to gauge how much of each ingredient I put and taste as I go.

4. Go ahead & boil the pasta (I usually do this before doing the pesto) till it gets 'al dente'. I like to also add in half an onion, salt & pepper to to the boiling water out of habit. (I always saw Mom do it, so why not follow up with the tradition?) (:

5. Once the pasta is all done, drain, and run it under cold water. Place it in a bowl.

6. Go ahead and add a few tablespoons of pesto at a time, tasting after every spoonful you add. Pesto can be very strong, so you dont want to overpower by adding too much.

7. Add a bit of olive oil, S&P, your cherry tomatoes, and pearl mozzeralla (which you can find in most local grocery stores near the cheese section), and you're done! Plate nicely with some basil leaves and some pesto sauce on the side (see below)

See how easy that was?! Delicious, refreshing, and easy! So you ask yourself now, what do I do with any leftover ingredients?! Here are a couple of ideas;

Pesto Bread!: yup, just as the name states. Just add some pesto dressing on top of freshly baked french bread or baguettes and you got yourself a winner for amazing appetizers at your next get together.

Caprese Sandwich; This is by far one of my favorites. Take your extra tomatoes, mozzarella, and pesto, add a few alfalfa sprouts, place it on artisan bread or regular whole wheat, toast && you got one rad sandwich. Toasting it will melt the cheese, while giving the bread that hearty crunch.

White Bean Pesto Dip; Almost like hummus, but not quite. Take a can of white cannelini beans, 2-3 tablespoons of pesto (depends on how strong of a pesto taste you like), 1 tablespoon of olive oil, a squeeze of a lemon, and some salt. Pulse 1/2 clove of garlic (if any) first then add the rest of ingredients and blend until smooth (or blend less for chunkier dip). Place in bowl and serve.

So there you have it. Some easy vegetarian recipes that will leave you pesto-fied. <-- not much of an appealing word. Hope you enjoyed, and if you try any of these, tell me about your experience in the comments (: I would love to hear how your experience goes!

Will post again soon,

<3 Stef

Monday, December 5, 2011

Not Selfish, Just Focused

So it's 3:44 in the morning and i am still awake... seriously, why must i be a night owl? my mind runs endlessly with ideas and thoughts as everyone around me is fast asleep. I dont get it. Yet again, I am also paranoid that if i go to sleep now, i wont wake up for work in the morning. Good thing that my commute to work has been cut by nearly 30 minutes, 16 miles, and to only 2 freeways. ( yeay!) Either way, I need to get my body on a set sleep schedule, cause all this night activity can't possibly be good. So as I was perusing the internet i found this awesome recipe for "doughless" pizza that I can't wait to try..
So no matter how much you HATE vegetables...its hard to deny that this looks pretty awesome. Am i right? (: & guess what? There is not one ounce of doughy substance in there... at all! The crust is made entirely out of cauliflower. I swear, once i get the chance... I'm making this baby for dinner. Once I do so, i'll post up the recipe and let you know how it goes!

Other Things on My Mind...

NYC (:

Of this possibly NOT be on my list. This amazing city that ponders my dreams just seems to be working overtime on me. It's like it knows I yearn for it and plots to purposely appear in my daily life. I know however, that one day ill step on its streets :) Just waiting to get some things straight (like get my car) and then ill be jet setting to the big apple!

Christmas Music!

This just get me in that Christmas spirit. If i didnt spend hours at night listening to it at night, i probably wouldnt feel that christmas feeling. My favorite song ever (as cheesy as it might sound) is Jump5's "Sleigh Ride" cover. Its so cheery & hip <-- for lack of a better word lol. I just put on Pandora (to who my infinite gratitude goes to!) and let my holiday music live on!


You can't go wrong with burning calories while dancing up a storm and having fun! I made a commitment with myself to go classes at least 3 times a week, and ive stuck to it for 2 weeks (: I swear, im addicted. The music and the dance moves are pretty sweet. An hour of this combined with my Herbalife protein shake is amazing! If someone near you is offering classes, I suggest you take try it asap!

Boy Meets World Reruns

...and last but not least. My life (since a little before Thanksgiving break) has been consisting of "Boy Meets World" reruns that i so casually found on Youtube. I mean seriously... i forgot how FREAKING AMAZING this show is .. especially Will Friedle. This show defined my childhood. (or at least part of it) and has taken up most of my data usage on my iPhone. I can't get enough of it .. especially that catchy intro song they started using in Season 5. If there is any other group of people I wanna hang out with...its them (:

Alright, so i guess this concludes my late night, early morning, what are you thinking still being up, blog post. It sucks, cause now i am actually sleepy... so i think ill go to sleep for a few hours.. or a couple... and just rest in the afternoon since i foresee a half day of work tomorrow. I am not going to lie.. feels nice to update this thang. I bet it was feeling a little neglected this blog was .. but as we move along.. cause my eyelids are dropping...oh yeah, & remember...

"Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is
long, and in the end, it's only with yourself."

<3 Stef