L: Apartment in San Sebastian, Spain by Mikel Irastorza, via Chic Deco | R: Mini Pop tarts via Martha Stewart.

So last week when I was in a cheeky mood and told winter off, maybe I should have thought of it twice…because since I posted that we’ve had nothing but non-stop rain. Maybe I should right an ode to snow to reverse the curse? Whatever, California has been in a draught anyway, so why yes, my Californian fellows, you have me to thank for all of this lovely water that’s making our nature lush and green ;)

You can always count on me to bring you a daily dose of colors to fight the gray skies. Like this gorgeous mid-century modern Spanish apartment in San Sebastian! If  only I could paint over all of the wood trims on our current home just like they did here. So fresh, a gorgeous mix of mid-century and modern touches and colors – bold yellow and teal. And my oh my, all these amazing pendants and the gold chandelier above the dining table – I die!

And with that, how about snacking on these mini pop tarts? Looking at them makes me smile, and I’m pretty sure they would make my belly happy too :) Happy Thursday, friends!

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A couple of weeks ago I shared my 5 easy tricks to look less tired, and quite a few of you asked me what my tricks are to apply red lipstick so here’s a little post about it! Now a little disclaimer girlies, I am not a beauty blogger and the way I do makeup is always the quick and easy way. You’ll find tons of much more elaborate tutorials out there (For example Savannah’s beauty column on her blog Maiedae is always a source of inspiration for me-, but here are my own little tricks for all you ladies in a hurry that want to go bold!

1. Moisturize! Always moisturize your lips before applying lipstick. I usually put lip balm first thing after brushing my teeth, before putting on any of my other makeup – this way my lips have time to absorb the moisture a bit while I put on my mascara etc. If your lips are super dry and flaky, make sure to exfoliate them every now and then to get rid of any dry skin.

2. Put a coat of foundation or concealer: this helps the color stay on longer and maintains the true lipstick color! A quick step but it helps SO much, believe me. And please pretty please, skip the long-wearing lipsticks as they will just suck all of the moisture out of your lips.

3. Trace around your lips with a lip liner: this will help better define your lips. I usually use a shade that’s a bit different from that of my lipstick, closer to my own real lip color, I find it helps bring a little bit of shading to my lips. Once I’ve traced the line, I blend it in a bit towards the inside of my lips so soften the line just a little.

4. Apply one first coat of lipstick: quick and dirty, straight out of the tube is what proves to work best for me. No need for brushes! Just be careful to not put any on your teeth ;)

5. Blot and reapply: Blot the liner with a tissue, then add another layer of lipstick the long lasting effect.

And a few more ticks:

  • Pick the right shade: it seems like true reds work best on a pale face (me!), while olive skin need brown-reds or mahogany shades.
  • Keep the rest of your makeup subtle: red lips already call for a LOT of attention, so keep the rest of your makeup to a minimum. I usually apply a bit of mascara, a tiny bit of blush and that’s it!
  • Give yourself time to get into it: starting to wear bold red lipstick is like sipping on your first glass of red wine – it’s probably going to shock you a bit at first! Give your eyes some time to adjust to seeing yourself that way.

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Source

Is it me only, or is winter way overrated? When I see my New York friends’ Instagram feeds I sometimes get a bit jealous of all that beautiful snow….that winter wonderland, you know? But then I really think about it - naaah, I ain’t missing that nasty cold. AT. ALL. I remember last winter when it took us two gazillions hours to get the girls ready to go out. We’d be outside what felt like two seconds and then we had hurry back inside. Hello California – I couldn’t be happier we live here now! Are you all ready for warmer temperatures and cute little dresses? Here is a little color inspiration to forget all about the gloomy winter. Loving all of these bright, bold colors- they remind me of a happy summer day filled with sunshine, the sea and delicious ice cream :)

Images: 1. How pretty are these floating flowers?!|2. Mmm well ok, if you insist, I’ll have a 5th serving ;) Cake topper by Paper & Stitch. |3.Yum, pomegranate sorbet with sparkling wine on Decor8. |4.  Cutest dress pattern by Tilly & The Buttons.|5. Every piece of furniture by Slowwood makes is perfection. |6. Such a gorgeous little bench!

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When I grow up I'll....pack up and move to Paris! by Alexa from The Short & the Sweet of It
One. Two. Three.
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Zuzii shoe collection

When I shop for the girls, I often think “Man, I wish I could buy that in my size!” – so much cute stuff out their for the kiddos. And that’s exactly what went through my mind when I saw Zuzii‘s shoe collection! Aren’t they the cutest little shoes? Hard to pick a favorite – the bright colors, polka dots, the stripes, the big bows. I used to not be a shoe kinda girl – but since I found a few fun pairs that I love last summer I am now a total a believer that shoes can make an outfit. I am thinking of getting Olivia these rad hot pink oxfords – this way she and I can match when I wear my own hot pink shoes from Boden :) Is it tacky when mama and daughter match? Happy Tuesday, friends!

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Happy Friday, friends! Any big plans this weekend? I am looking forward to catching up with hubby since he’s been in NYC all week, and have some good food with friends. Also taking a fashion design/sketching class on Sunday and I can’t wait to see what I get out of it! Our Friday nights are usually spent at home, chilling out. It’s our much needed catch up time after the usual hectic week, and now that the girls are getting bigger we’re starting new Friday night family traditions like playing board games . Of course, design freak that I am, I had to scout the internet for the pretty (and fun!)  family board games out there – here are my favorites! What’s your favorite game to play as a family?

1. Moon dominos by Fredericks & Mae
2. Retro memory game by Ingela Arrhenius.
3. Captain’s mistress strategy game.
4. Classic games redesigned by Sam Kittinger. Not for sale, sadly, but how I wish they were!
5. Jeu de 7 familles – a classic French card game that I used to LOVE playing when I was little (the goal is to gather up “families”), and this one is gorgeous  and illustrated by one of my favorite artists, Natalie Lété.
6. Nowhere to go – love the “madmen” feel of the box, and heard great things about the game

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Last weekend was a weekend of firsts. First time in Tahoe for me. First time we touched some snow since we left New York last summer. First time on skis for the girls. And we loved every single second of it.

Some friends had rented a cabin in Squaw Valley for the long holiday weekend and invited us to join them – we couldn’t possibly say no! We usually spend most of our vacation budget (and time!) going back to Europe to see family so the rest of the year we  try to make the most out of smaller breaks like this one. And even though I couldn’t ski because of the (ever-growing) bump it was the most perfect of weekends. There is something about the mountains – it is so restful for the soul just to be there. These big tall mountains have a way to put the small problems of life back into perspective, somehow. I feel so at peace in the mountains.  

And seeing the girls learn something new, seeing their excitement and fears and joy as the got on skis, seeing them conquer something completely new – that, my friends, was pretty magical. One of the best part about being a parent, no doubt. Hopefully next winter we get to go again, this time taking another little viking princess along with us :)

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L: Home of Yvonne at Yvestown| R: Vanilla puff pastries by Carnets Parisiens.

Hi friends – I am back from lake Tahoe, all refreshed and fired up from rolling down in the snow ;) Pictures of that coming right up tomorrow, in the meantime I thought I’d share some pictures of the home of Yvonne, the lovely blogger behind Yvestown – if you don’t know it yet, you really ought to! Yvonne comes up with the cutest crochet projects (if only I could crochet!), and her home is well, simply dreamy. So cheery and bright! It is filled with white and pastels and pretty floral wallpapers. Pastel heaven!

And with that, how about these pretty little vanilla puff pastries by Carnets Parisiens? I love her pastel take on this classic French pastry, simply beautiful – my mouth is watering just looking at the pictures. And I bet that they taste just as amazing as they look! Happy Tuesday, friends!

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Source.

Happy love day, friends! How are you all celebrating, doing anything special with your special someone? Hubby and I won’t get much one on one time today – we’re leaving this afternoon with the girls for a 3-day weekend in Tahoe with friends – snow! Instead this morning we tried to squeeze in a little coffee date together after dropping off the girls at school. Not ideal, but still nice – we’ll take what we can! No doubt, having a family take a toll on married life, but it’s important to remember that love is a game. Not as in it shouldn’t be taken seriously. But in that we need to remember to have fun with it. And to remember that we need to actually play that game (a.k.a put some effort into it) if we want to have a chance to win at it.

Have a great weekend – I’ll see you all on Tuesday when we’re back from the long weekend!

_________________________________________________________________________

how to piss off a French person – haha. All they forgot is “tell us we don’t shower and don’t shave our armpits” :D

♥ I just started oil pulling – WHAT?! Yes, 6 months in Berkeley only and I am already turning crunchy on you. Would you try?

♥ Colorful and delicious! grilled sweet potatoes tacos with lime crema.

♥ Just found a pattern to make this gorgeous dress – will be my first sewing project for after baby’s born!

♥ Did you procrastinate for Valentine’s Day? 10 awesome printables!

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Like that, it crept up on me. 26 weeks. 26 exciting weeks of growing another little viking princess in my belly. They say that you should enjoy your first pregnancy because it’s the only one that you’ll actually have time to enjoy, and it is oh so true. I feel like I blinked and now I am already 6 months pregnant, getting into the third trimester. Where oh where did all that time go? I wish I could stop time. And at the same time I can’t really wait to meet her. See her little face. Hold her little hands. Get to know her week after week, month after month.

It’s been the sweetest of rides, even if a fast one. Feeling (and seeing!) her kick always brings a smile to my face. She rolls and kicks so much! The pregnancy feels so real right now. The girls have fully embraced the idea of having another little sister soon – they are so excited! Just a couple days ago I saw Olivia day dreaming in the car, then she tells me: “Mama, I love my baby sister”. The sweetest :) We’re trying to talk to them as much as possible about what it will be like when little sister arrives – and it’s been all about finding the balance between setting them expectations and keeping them really excited about their little sister. I’m so SO curious (also anxious!) to see how this third little one changes the dynamics around our home.

Friends keep asking how I am doing, and to my surprise I still have a lot of energy…most of the time! I feel so thankful that I’ve only had easy pregnancies, and I am trying to enjoy all the energy I have right now as I know it will not last. In a few weeks I’ll be BFF with the couch, no doubt ;) I try to eat healthy (have to, you should have seen my midwifes’ face when they realized I gained 10 pounds over the holidays alone, gaaaaaaaah!!!) but every now and I just have to have a little mug cake….I can blame it on the baby, right?! I am also in full nesting mode and seem to want to fix everything that needs to be fixed in our home, including baby’s nursery corner in our room. I can tell hubby is trying not to freak out and is just letting me do my thing. Good hubby not getting in the way of a nesting woman :)

Before I run out of time with this pregnancy I wanted to share some of my favorite things to have during pregnancies. Call them “pregnancy essentials” if you will, although we can argue that nothing is really essential ;) Mamas – anything I am missing? what’s on your list? And PS – if you are not pregnant and not planning on being pregnant for a while, these items make super thoughtful gifts for your girlfriends who are expecting!

1. Stay hydrated – Bobble water bottleI feel thirsty ALL.THE.TIME. So a water bottle that can filter water like the Bobble bottle is such a life savior!

2. Get the best support – Blanqi support tankPregnancy is such a beautiful thing, and at the same time, so strange! Seeing your body morph to grow a human being is probably the wildest thing. Believe me when I say that you’ll be thankful for whatever support you can get for the growing parts of your body – belly, but not only ;) The blanqi tops are just amazing for that!

3. Sooth your belly – Palmer’s tummy butterI’ve used this when I was pregnant with Olivia. I’ve used this when I was pregnant with Madeline. And with this little ones too. And if I was pregnant 10 more times I’d keep using it over and over again without any doubt. It’s the best to sooth a stretching, dry skin.

4. Get a good night sleep – Bump Nest pillowSo the minute I found out I was pregnant with this one I ordered this pillow. Because as a pregnant lady I just had to claim my right to use that pillow – nevermind that I didn’t really “need” it at 7 weeks pregnant ;) Poor hubby having to find some space in the bed! I can only sleep well with a body pillow, it’s simply genius. I don’t own the Bump Nest pillow but I love the pretty look. Apparently every other pregnant blogger out there has one – looks like I just missed the memo in my hurry to get mine! PS: talking about great gifts for your pregnant girlfriends, this is one of them! When I was pregnant with Olivia one of my dear friends gave one to me….best gift ever!

5. Stay fit – Fitbit activity tracker. Let’s get real here. I don’t exercise too much when I am not pregnant outside of pilates classes here and there, so when I am pregnant the exercising gets really really bad! I got a Fitbit activity tracker a while back though, and I’ve been wearing it every day. It’s made me really away of how much I move (or don’t move!) during the day, and it has made me thoughts of new ways I could walk more during the week. It’s pushing me to stay fit!

6. Take your (yummi) vitamins – ViaFusion chewy prenatal vitaminsAgain, let’s get real here – I ATE eating prenatal vitamins. I know they are good for me and I need them, but I have such a hard time swallowing them. So when I discovered these chewable vitamins I was in heaven! They almost feel like eating candy, except for they have all that good stuff in them for you. I also take these chewable calcium vitamins.

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Red velvet. I’ll pretty much try anything that says “red velvet”, you don’t have to twist my arm. Problem is, pretty much anything red velvet goes straight my thighs… except for this smoothie, friends! It’s sweet and delicious, it tastes just like red velvet cake, AND  it’s super healthy for you. Perfect for my little winter detox! The secret? Beets! I know, I know, it sounds weird, but try it and see for yourself! This smoothie makes the perfect treat – especially with Valentine’s Day just around the corner ;) And don’t you love that gorgeous, deep purply-red color?! Read on the the recipe.

RED VELVET SMOOTHIE

3/4 cup almond milk
1/2 cup cooked beets (steamed or roasted, how to)
1-2 tablespoons agave nectar (you can replace with something like a few dates if you want something even healthier!)
2 tablespoons cacao powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup ice – I used ice cubes made with coconut milk, delicious and nutricious

Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until completely smooth. Enjoy :)

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