19 Crimes: The New Way to UnWine

Hey, yall! So sorry I have been soooo MIA lately but it has been for a good reason. DRUMROLL PLEASE: WE ARE MOVING TO NYC! Ahhh, I can not wait to bring you guys along with us for the ride, but to say its been a crazy AF time, would be an understatement!

Between all the recent travels back and forth plus our weekend work trips, a bish was in need to UNWINE… (get it?) Long overdue, tbh! My fave lately has been this 19 Crimes Cabernet. I can’t even remember the last time I just simply sat and sipped on a glass of wine… sans emails, sans WORK. Thankfully 19 Crimes saved the day.

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The traveling and the frenzy surrounding our move have really taken a toll on me and she knows no self care these days…le sigh.

I will say the few times we have planned for a good night in, Netflix and a wine sesh, we literally fall asleep on our couch within minutes… make-up on and all, yikes! So this time, we both said no more.  I grabbed my gratitude journal, actually sat down and simply chilled tf out.

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For some time now, our friends have suggested some wines to try, but as ya’ll know, two sips of alcohol and I’m out! AHAHA, so it’s been harder to find a wine that I can enjoy and actualllly finish. And when I say enjoy, I mean, thoroughly enjoy every sip. Many wines (to me) taste very alcohol-y and aren’t that pleasant.

But after some digging, bae and I found a bunch of reviews online about an interactive wine to sit, listen (I did just say listen, I know, weird, right? Just read on…), and unwind with. At first, the name didn’t register all that well and it wasn’t until we actually brought some home when it all came together. 19 Crimes, sounds a bit more like a novel and less like a wine brand, but it’s actually a bit of both, in a sense.

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Playing on the name, it really is criminal to taste that good, LOL… it definitely made me feel relaxed yet NOT sleepy.

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Maybe it was deep red blend of strong fruit flavors or the sweet blackberry hint, but it def had a nice balance on the taste buds. Smooth AF!

Bae was also loving it, and especially with the AR app, it really made for a fun night.

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Once you download The Living Wine Labels app, you get to scan the criminal on the front label and get to hear them tell their story about these 19 real world crimes that they partook in.

As the name suggests, 19 Crimes is really all about these short stories from prisoners who were sent to Australia. I don’t know about ya’ll, but I live for true crime, mysteries and cliffhangers, so as soon as bae and I heard the first story, we were so freaking hooked: such a fun spin on your classic glass of wine.

A message in a bottle so to speak…but these aren’t necessarily left in the past. Like I don’t geek out over many things, but this ingenious AR experience really makes that concept come to life. If you are having a bad day, escape reality for a bit, grab a 19 Crimes bottle, and hear stories that will make you want to pop open the next one.

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I know, right now, I’m like the last person to be talking about taking the time to simply pause and unwind, but I cannot stress enough just how much joy this little game/wine sesh brought. It really is the simple things.

Sometimes traditional escapism doesn’t cut it and we have to try new things that can come in different mediums, or in this case, experiences. At the moment, the whole move to the Big Apple has brought on so many doubts and anxieties but I am so excited…well, exhausted…but excited.

With so dang much to prepare and with such little time, I need to remind myself to let my hair down, more than once in a while and UNWINE. But this time, with 19 Crimes. Here’s to getting through stressful times, in the best ways we know how ❤

Although this post is sponsored by 19 Crimes, all opinions are my own. @19Crimes #LiveInfamously #19Crimes

My First NYFW As a Blogger

The past few months have been a whirlwind, y’all! The fact that I’m even speaking from the frame of “blogger,” is still so surreal to me! I just want to pause and thank every single one of you for giving me so much love and grace in this new season of my life!

Just recently, I returned from a trip of a lifetime! NEW YORK CITY, BABY! Now if you know me, you’d know that nothing makes me happier than the Big Apple! In fact, that’s where I plan to move next! So when I was invited to my first show, three weeks before NYFW, it had me thinking. I am not as well versed in the fashion world as others in my industry are, I’d never been to fashion week… how freaking intimidating, and OMG, it’s like three weeks away…I’M NOT READY! But then I had a change of heart. How amazing would it be just being in the city that brings me so much life, surrounded by fellow creators from all around the globe! PLUS, I would take full advantage while we were there and begin apartment hunting! SO, all this to say, the decision to attend became fairly easy as more thought went into it!

Next, we had to search for hotel stays! Since, I am the last person knowledgable about NYC lodging, I went about asking all my NYC gals for fun, hip, and central accommodations in the city. I may have asked, 20 girls and the one common denominator between them all was YOTEL New York .

If you are into views beyond your wildest expectations, modern design, and affordability, Yotel is THE place to look into! So once we finalize our stay with the lovely staff at Yotel, we could breathe a bit, because we knew we’d be taken care of with their more than helpful staff. Questions I had: “how close are you guys to the shows?” “Do you have views of the Empire State? “Will there be enough room for me to hang up all my lewks for the week?” They left me feeling more than confident, that our stay would be 10/10.

*HINT: IT WAS BEYOND AMAZE!!*

Then we moved onto outfits. Since the decision to attend was sooo last minute, I decided to attempt to thrift all my lewks in efforts to save some $$$ and for sustainability, hunniee. 5 thrift visits later, I had about 12 outfits solidified and ready to go!

So many thoughts raced through my head the night before as I had absolutely no idea what to expect but I was beyond excited! I knew I had to go in with a few intentions, however. 1) I would not compare myself or my outfits to the other babes’ attending, 2) I would be less critical during our shoots around the city, and 3) I would soak it all in! Every. single. moment. And that’s EXACTLY what I did, hunaay!

WELCOME TO NEW YORK:

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When we arrived, it was pouring rain but honestly I couldn’t have asked for a warmer welcome! Only a few minutes drive away from the iconic Empire State Building, our exciting NYFW adventures were about to begin, starting at Yotel.

When we first walked in, we were greeted with the option of checking in swiftly with a seamless airline styled self-service check-in or of course, the friendly concierge…modern AF. During our time there, we coordinated to stay in different rooms so that we could experience all that Yotel had to offer! 

Upon our initial check-in, we arrived in our King Junior Suite with views that left us speechless. As a west-coaster, you only dream of views this stunning!

The entire room was Smart Equipped. Interchangeable touch LED lights, adjustable Serta SmartBeds, and fully stocked body & skincare products.

The next day, we headed to some NYFW events and of course, shot throughout the city, along the way!

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We then headed back to Yotel to experience some R+R in their King Jr Suite with Terrace. I mean, come on…a freaking terrace in a hotel room…but not just any terrace, one with a private jacuzzi!!

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INSANE! After some much needed down time, we headed off to a few more events to close the night.

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As an creative, the most exciting part of the job, is being able to connect with so many people from around the world. As soon as we headed into our first event, it was as if I reuniting with old friends. I mean, I literally met IRL like 10-15 girls right off the bat whom I’d been chatting with for years. It was amazing! The energy in those rooms were electric!

That next day, we headed back out on the town for another full day of festivities. So many meet ups, events, pop-up shops, etc etc.

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The girls had us catching trains to the hidden gems of the city. Adventuring across town was maybe one of the top 3 highlights of my trip!

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We made our way back to Manhattan to check-in to my favorite room of the trip, Yotel’s Penthouse King Suite. I MEAN, I BASICALLY CRIED WALKING INTO THIS ROOM.

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THESE VIEWS MADE IT SO HARD FOR US TO WANT TO LEAVE OUR ROOM!

That following morning, we decided to take it easy and spend most of the day at Yotel. We headed to the rooftop bar to enjoy some, “Social, Drink, and Food”!

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After a few hours of enjoying the views, we checked-in to our newest room, the Corner Queen.

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Once you walk in, you have direct views of the Hudson River and on the right, you have ongoing views of Midtown.

We soaked in the views until the evening, ate close-by in Time’s Square and ended the night back on the rooftop.

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My face knowing our trip was coming to an end! LOL, TEARS.

We woke up early, and DUN, DUN, DUN…DID OUR FIRST WAVE OF APARTMENT HUNTING. SO EXCITING! Later in the day, we planned for a series of shows. But of course, on the way, we shot some content.

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Unfortunately, we got lost for several hours along the subway and missed all of the shows for the day 😦 LIKE WHAT A FAIL! It was def a huge bummer but at the end of the day, I was still so overwhelmed with gratitude and joy from the past few days. We went with the intentions of experiencing NYFW but actually gained so much more! That night, we stared out at our views, in absolute awe.

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In awe of the city, we will soon call home. In awe of the city where we fell in love. In awe of a week that gave us so much conviction of where we want to go. A place that connected so many souls and established friendships and reunited old ones. A place that nowhere else compares.

If you are wanting to attend NYFW next year: my advice is to go for it! Even if you are not invited to shows, still buy that plane ticket, sis! Just being apart of the energy, where you’ll bump into likeminded creatives at every corner, the inspo and zest of the city, and going out of your comfort zone to even attend, will be THE experience in itself. The shows and events are just the cherry on top. So hopefully next year, you’ll be able to call me a New Yorker, and I’ll know the subway system well enough to not get lost during the shows, hehe!

Thank you, Yotel, for making our stay feel like home; An Instagrammer’s dream, for sure! Til’ next time, NYC! XO

NYC Recap

As I sit here, reflecting on the past number of days, I’ve found difficulty in looking for the right words that best describe this trip. In short, NYC was… SIMPLY MAGICAL. I had high expectations for the city, and to be honest… my experience surpassed all of them and then some!

* Cue “Welcome to New York” by Taylor Swift *

Day 1:

We stayed in an adorable Airbnb in the Bed Stuy neighborhood of Brooklyn. We were just two blocks away from the G subway train which took us everywhere throughout the city!

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Bed Stuy is a neighborhood full of character. Between its famous Brooklyn brownstone row-houses and untouched storefronts, this up and coming community had a number of hipter cafés and eateries along the way!

Our favorite: Marcy & Myrtle Café. This quaint little shop was our go-to stop, first thing in the AM!

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We made way to Midtown Manhattan. Let me just say, the second we stepped out for the night, (5 layers deep and allll) the cold still hit me like a ton of bricks!

As we were walking down the avenues we had to pause to gawk at the Saks Fifth Ave. holiday light show. It was effing majestic!

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As I had no idea where anything was, I was not aware we were literally right across the street from the Rockefeller Center! Seeing the iconic Christmas tree and ice staking rink, definitely was a “pinch me-moment.”

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We then made way inside to the Top of the Rock. This Observatory on the roof of the Rockefeller Center features 360 VIEWSSS of the city. It was absolutely breathtaking.

*As we were paying for our tickets we realized there was a “CityPASS” option which gave admission to the top 6 NYC attractions (def came in handy)!*

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We explored for about 10-15 minutes before we reached Time Square. AHHHH!

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Day 2:

We took the G line to downtown Brooklyn and walked through some of the prettiest streets, I have ever seen!

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For lunch we stumbled upon – Oaxaca Taqueria

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Our burritos were not only massive but also bomb.com!

We then walked our way to the Brooklyn Bridge.

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These views were stunning!

We walked across the bridge into the financial district and cozied up inside a local coffee shop for a good chunk of time.

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We set out for dinner in Midtown at uber-chic bistro/bar, Madison & Vine. Music was on point and the food was absolutely delish!

We then grabbed some drinks at the Top of the Strand. This cozy rooftop lounge featured a cool glass ceiling which allowed for unobstructed views of the Empire State!

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We were warm, drinks were strong, and we had the best seats in town 🙂

Later, we walked just a few blocks to the Empire State!

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We arrived just past midnight but with doors closing at 2AM, we basically had the views all to ourselves (:

Day 3:

Waking up in a winter wonderland = UTTER HAPPINESS! This was by far a dream come true, especially for a California girl.

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We had our morning coffee fix and headed to Central Park!

We passed the Columbus Circle Christmas Market and ventured throughout the park.

An Instagrammer’s dream, really. Just picture: horse-drawn carriages plotting by, little kids mid snow ball fight, and live saxophonists playing our favorite holiday tunes. It was a scene straight out of a movie.

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We headed for lunch near by at Le Pain Quotidien.

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We then spent several hours in the 9/11 Memorial Museum. I def recommend putting a couple of hours aside for this as it really put our time in this beautiful city into perspective. 

For dinner we ate next door at the Osteria Della Pace-Eataly. My favorite dish from Rome was Cacio e Pepe, so seeing this item on their menu thoroughly excited me.

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FYI, IT WAS PERFECTION!

We then headed out to another part of town. And boy was I in for a treat!

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*LIFE MADE.*

Day 4:

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First things first, caffeine.

We headed to the harbor and made way to see Lady Liberty!

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Next stop, DUMBO.

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For lunch we ate at the cute and yummy Westville eatery.

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We then walked to the neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights.

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It was the cutest neighborhood I have ever seen! #ACTUALgoals

Madison Square Park

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For Dinner we ate at Rolf’s German Restaurant

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PROST!

Brooklyn Bridge Park

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Views of the skyline and the Brooklyn Bridge set way for the most romantic stroll.

Last but not least, we could not miss out on the Raging Bull.

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All in all, this trip was an absolute dream! It was romantic and full of the Christmas spirit. I utterly fell in love with the city. The charm of this city makes it hard to not want to go back! Xoxo

 

Fave Winter Pieces|NYC Shopping Haul

Winter is coming, y’all, aka the most wonderful time of the year! As much as I’m looking forward to the holidays, I’m not so sure if I’m ready for the cold! It’s as if, Los Angeles goes into crisis mode when the temperature drops below 70 degrees…or maybe that’s just me!

Us Californians, have it easy compared to those East Coasters…but **drum roll please**… in a few days, I will be experiencing my first East Coast winter!  I AM BEYOND EXCITED! Ever since I was a kid, I have dreamt of gallivanting across New York City, under 5 layers of clothing, with a hot beverage in my hand. And from what I’ve seen in movies, nowhere oozes festive spirit better than the Big Apple! AHH!

This will be my first time in NYC and to be honest, I’m already shivering! So, I plan on packing plenty of warm options to fight the cold!

Of course, I will be bringing some of my staple pieces but I’ll also be taking some new finds 🙂

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Charcoal Jaxon & James Baker Boy

Fownes Fownes Women's Faux Fur Earmuffs - Cheetah Print

Faux Fur Earmuffs- Sears

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Image result for infinity scarves old navy

Honeycomb Stitch Infinity Scarf – Old Navy

3f6i8v-iOversized Turtleneck – American Apparel

00211706-09.jpgOversized Turtleneck Sweater – Forever 21

 

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Mock Neck Sweater – Marshall’s

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Camel Turtleneck- Zaful

Image 8 of TEXTURED HOODED JACKET from ZaraRusset Textured Hooded Jacket – Zara

Image 8 of SUPER SOFT COAT from ZaraCharcoal Super Soft Coat – Zara

shoppingWool-Blend Peacoat – Michael Kors

dzz88305_stone_xlWaterfall Coat- Boohoo

Forever 21 Pants - High waisted dressy capri pantsHigh Wasted Carpi Pants – Forever21

nn.jpgDistressed Black Denim Jeans- ANGL

Slim Boyfriend Jeans- Lucky Brand

 

Image result for booties 4 inch heel steve maddenAnkle Booties – Steve Madden

3Faux Suede Chelsea Boots -Forever21

 

Main Image - Steve Madden Ezra Thigh High Boot (Women)

Thigh High Boots – Steve Madden

 

I love getting style inspo from anywhere I can! So hopefully these items give you some too, for your next trip! Xoxo