Poofy Skirts And All


Cardigan: Vintage. Shirt: LOFT. Skirt: Thrifted. Mesh underskirt: Handmade by my mama. Shoes: c/o JellyPop Shoes. Necklace: LOFT.

Growing up, I watched all the old classics. You know, the stuff with singing, dancing, and honey-sweet romance. Instead of tuning in to early morning children's programming, the little version of myself dolled up in every frilly dress and slip known to man (all worn at the same time... what can I say? Layering is practically an innate quality of mine), twirling and serenading any family member that would listen to the tunes of Harvey Girls and Seven Brides For Seven Brothers.

My favorite part of all those silver screen movies? The dresses, specifically the ones with poofy skirts and lacey slips. Oh, and let's not forget the shoes. I wish you could have a friendly ole' chat with my mom about the frenzy it created. She tells the story best. I would start jumping up and down in excitement every time a waltz broke out, which was obviously more often than not. The crazier and poofier the dress, the more enthralled I became and the higher my jumps reached. It even got to the point where I started drawing pictures of my favorite scenes. My piece de resistance is the drawing of this act when she tumbles over at the very end. I'm pretty sure it's tucked away in a keepsakes box somewhere. I should pull it out and scan it for my posterity to behold. And let's not forget the time I made my oldest brother Brett reenact this scene (the jumps in particular) with me. Ohhh, so many fond memories.

Anyway, it is no surprise to me that I'm a sucker for an excessively fluffy skirt with all kinds of frills, sparkle, and bows. It's a part of my identity practically.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to watch White Christmas. Gotta brush up on my "The Best Things Happen While You're Dancing" moves ;)

Dare I DIY?: Traveling Mistletoe


Who likes to kiss under the mistletoe? We've taken a spin on the traditional hanging mistletoe in the doorway and made it travel-friendly.

This little holiday craft is simple, cute, and the perfect prop for Christmas photos and parties! Your holiday bash will be all the rage with dangling mistletoe at your fingertips. Especially if you are single and looking for some lip action. You now get unlimited smooches on Christmas and New Year's. You're welcome.

Santa's Little Helper

Here's a riddle for you: How do you decorate a Christmas tree with a 10-month old determined to yank and pull everything in sight? Get him a train set!

Our beautiful, glowy, and oh-so-fake Christmas tree went up this week and Santa's (mama's) little helper is especially talented at pulling off all the balls. Therefore, our Christmas tree will be decorated from the middle up by the end of the week. But guess what? I love it!

A tree with wonky ornaments and crinkled ribbon brings honest to goodness joy. Playing Santa and creating Christmas memories and traditions with Luke leaves us nothing but jolly. I cannot wait to hear Luke's little squeal and the sound of his hands clunking from crawling at lightning fast speeds toward his presents on Christmas morning. 

This holiday season holds volumes of more meaning than I ever imagined possible because we are sharing the spirit of Christmas with Luke, as a little family of three, and most importantly celebrating the life of our Savior that makes this beautiful life all possible.

Merry Christmas!

It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Month


So this blog post title may sound like an ode to menses, but it is most definitely not because that title would be something like "It's The Worst Week Of My Life This Month, Somebody Please Knock Me Out."

It's that lovely time where I let you know I am accepting sponsors for the month of December! So exciting, right?

Well, I would love to help you promote your blog or business especially during the most wonderful time of year (yes, I mean Christmas). The last few months for my sponsors brought them a lot of great traffic and I am wanting and waiting to do the same for you! We are doing all kinds of fun things for the holiday this coming month and you just must be a part of it. Aaand because I am full of all kinds of Christmas cheer, I am offering ad space at a discount for December!

Click here to book your slot! Hohohohoho!

My Dream Holiday Outfit

Christmas party outfits are my favorite because a) ridiculous amounts of glitter and sequins are socially acceptable this time of year and b) I get an excuse to get all gussied up and whatnot. Winner, winner, chicken dinner.

This polka dot cashmere sweater screams winter party in a girly and feminine way, and the colorblocked metallic skirt and heels add just the right touch of glitz and glamour (yes, I like to pretend I'm a Brit sometimes and spell my words all fancy-like).

In a dream (it's $298!) I would wear this rosy collar necklace because every girl should have one just like it. And since I am a Southern California dweller, these Kate Spade sunglasses are a must. Now all I need is a swanky shade of new lipstick and a pretty little hairdo. 

What does your holiday party outfit look like?

A Random Thing Or Two-sday


Sweater: LOFT. Leggings: H&M. Hat: Target. Scarf: H&M. Boots: Boutique.
1) While driving home yesterday, a little granny (handicapped sticker and all) chugged along in front of me. Going 20 under the speed limit as all the old timers do, I took time to admire her curly white hair poking out from the driver's seat. As we turned the corner, I saw fire engine red hair from the other angle. I immediately freaked out and got all kinds of excited thinking I was witnessing elderly conjoined twins driving, with fabulous hair nonetheless. To my dismay, the white haired beauty was just her trusty poodle sticking its head out the window. Cheap thrills, guys. I live for 'em.

2) Fact: There are no snakes in New Zealand. I repeat, there are no snakes in New Zealand (source)! Considering I am deathly afraid of the monstrous creatures, New Zealand suddenly sounds like a wonderful place to relocate abroad.

3) I bought these ridiculous leggins for $5. It was one of those moments I just couldn't walk away. High five to you, Black Friday.

4) How many of you read The Baby-sitters Club books? If you are a child of the 90's such as myself, you very well could run the risk of dying of laughter after reading this article.

5) Would you rather your laugh sound like Mozart's Piano Concerto 15 or Beethoven's Symphony #6 in F Major?

Black Friday! Hodad's! Coronado! Decorating!


Outfit// Sweater: Target. Pants: H&M. Boots: Flashbacks.

May we all pause and give a round of applause for the holiday weekend, please. It sure did deliver this Thanksgiving. We spent time as a family with Nanny and Papa, free from the overabundance of social media. It was simple and we loved it. Here's a little recap...

Thanksgiving with the California Rodriguez clan put us into a turkey coma. Black Friday kicked our butts trying to fight the inevitable turkey coma, but we prevailed and made it through the lines that wrapped around the entire store in an effort to complete our Seinfeld collection. Who cares if they were there the next day when the crowds subsided? We live for the hunt.

Hodad's in downtown San Diego served up some mean burgers and the best fries in the world. And I love me some fries. 

And what would a day out and about in San Diego be if it didn't include a stroll around Coronado? It wouldn't be, so we strolled, posed and even managed to take a hammy family photo. Now we just need to ice skate on the melting rink at Hotel Del Coronado in the 70 degree weather and we are set to ring in the Southern California holiday season! 

Speaking of, we finally get to decorate! Our house is filled with Christmas tunes and the aroma of peppermint candles. We just need to bedazzle our gloriously fake tree and all will be merry in the Rodriguez household. Fa la la la la, la la la laaaaaahhh!

Happy Thanksgiving


image via Fox In The Pine.
Wishing you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy the time with your friends and family sharing your gratitude for your abundant life, while you stuff your face with the goodness of turkey, potatoes, homemade rolls, and apple pie. And don't forget to take a tryptophan-induced nap (that's always the best part)!

I am taking a little blog hiatus for the next few days, so I can fully unplug and soak up the holiday with our family. See you sometime next week!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Excuse Me, Do You Work Here?

Peplum (dress worn as a top): c/o eShakti. Slip/undershirt: c/o Kingdom & State. Pants: LOFT. Heels: Nine West. Bracelets: H&M.

Apparently my forehead is permanently stamped with a "I work here and am here to help" sign. It doesn't even matter where I shop.

This last weekend, I was quietly minding my own business trying on hats and scarves at Target, when a 60-something year old lady walked up and abruptly inquired, "Yes, where are the children's work out clothes, please?"

To which I replied, "Uhhh. Ahhh. Ummm... the children's work out clothes?"

Old lady: "Yes, the Champion brand I think it is."

Me: "Uhhhhhh (getting red in the face from a mixture of amusement, shock, and humiliation).

Old lady: "Ohhh my goodness! You don't work here, do you?!"

Me: "No."

Let's review the whole scene. First, my shopping cart filled to the brim with groceries was right next to me. Second, last time I checked Target employees didn't wear black sweats and black hoodies with wet I-just-got-out-of-the-shower hair. Third, never, not even once in my life have I seen an actual employee trying on clothing and accessories during their shift. Usually they are too busy giving you the stink eye for touching something they just tidied up in the chaotic belt section (I wouldn't be happy 300 knotted belts later either).

I guess the most important moral of this story is this isn't the first time this incredibly awkward situation has occurred. Last year (during Christmas), someone at Walmart asked me if I worked there as I was digging through random tree ornaments. Once again, it was clear as day that I was in the middle of shopping, and someone still assumed I worked there.

I'm still trying to decide if I come across as friendly and helpful or if I just act like I own the place everywhere I go? I can't help it if retail stores and shopping centers are my second home and I exude an unusual comfort level while shopping. Right?

One thing I do know is that holiday time makes shoppers crazy and delusional. So please, next time you ask someone for help this holiday season, make sure you double check they actually work there and save yourself the embarrassment. And them.

A Thankful Thing Or Two-sday


 Outfit// Shirt: Thrifted. Scarf: Target. Denim: LOFT. Booties: JCPenney.

1) I am thankful for the absolutely brilliant and wonderful people I call my family and friends.

2) Fact: "In an experimental comparison, those who kept gratitude journals on a weekly basis exercised more regularly, reported fewer physical symptoms, felt better about their lives as a whole, and were more optimistic about the upcoming week compared to those who recorded hassles or neutral life events" (source).

3) I am thankful for wool socks and enormous cozy blankets on chilly mornings.

4) I am thankful for the wisdom of others, which kindly assists in leading and directing our little family of three in its rightful course.

5) What are you most thankful for?

Group Giveaway


Happy Monday, world! Today we have another mahhhvelous giveaway from some savvy, entrepreneurial ladies. It's all about the pretty little details, and these giveaways will add that flair to your life. Enjoy!

Things looking a little dull and drab on your interwebz space? Tori from Eye Candy is giving away a customized blog header. Check out her sleek, minimal designs on her blog and enter in the widget below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Kendra from Little Almanac is giving away this perfectly dainty and simple white rosette headband from her new shop, The Pink Rosette. Wouldn't this be the cutest gift to send to all of your friends having babies (I don't know about you, but my Facebook feed is over-flowing with wrinkly, 2-foot humans every 5 seconds and I love it)? Enter in the widget below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Paulina from Chloe + Isabel is giving away this staple teardrop necklace in your choice of gold or silver! Paulina lives in New Jersey and endured the havoc of Hurricane Sandy. In an effort to help her fellow neighbors, she is donating the profits from her sales to rebuilding the East Coast. Her jewelry is beautiful, and makes a great gift for the holidays as it helps a wonderful cause! Enter in the widget below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway 

My (Unorganized) Closet


I feel that I should let you in on a little secret. Well, actually multiple little secrets.

A) I have an obsession with seeing other people's closets, specifically fashion blogger's closets. You know how you feel all warm and fuzzy and your heart mildly palpitates whenever you get a glimpse of Carrie Bradshaw's wardrobe collection? It just never gets old, no matter how many times you watch the movies or shows. I feel that way with any closet, especially those of people's style I admire.

B) Because of the aforementioned obsession, I thought it would be fun to show you mine, however this is evidence that I need to get more organized. I should probably be a tiny bit embarrassed, but that is just how the cookie crumbles over here.

C) I hate doing laundry, much less folding it. Hence the leaning tower of pantz.

D) When you have exactly 5 feet of space to jam 5,000 articles of clothing into, you get creative with the storage. I use a vintage vase to stack bangles and bracelets, a wire hanger as a makeshift earring rack, and the hanging rod as a necklace display. Gotta work with what you're given, right?

And there is my literal closet full of secrets. What does your closet look like (please tell me it's unorganized too)?

P.S. Today I caved and decided to hang my pants instead of folding them so I can actually see them. I'm considering it a head start on my New Year resolutions.

*Post sponsored by Slope Interactive

Faux Dreadlocks


Jacket: TJMaxx (similar). Fur Scarf: Target. Shirt: Matt's (H&M). Leggings: LOFT. Socks: Target. Boots: Boutique (similar). Bracelets: H&M, Flashbacks.

I give two big, enthusiastic thumbs up to dreadlocks. This isn't the first time professing my love for rat's nest, mangled hair, and it isn't about to be the last. I could never commit to a hair doozie requiring me to shave my head at the end of it, because I am painfully fickle and I would have a shaved head faster than you can say Miley Cyrus.

Enter not washing my hair (inspired by this genius piece of work) and purposely braiding and ratting selective locks of hair. I call them faux dreadlocks; a fabulous, mother-friendly alternative to the real McCoy. 

Now the next question is if I should do this to my hair (I know, there are no words). I only hesitate because for the first time in my life since I was 13, my hair remains untouched and in its au natural glory. The thought of coloring and/or bleaching it sounds so hip and thrilling, but all that hard work put into maintaining my heaven-sent hair color for the last 2+ years will just go down the drain. And if I bleach it, then what will I be tempted to do to it next? Before I know it I will turn gray and never again be able to just wear my natural hair color and compelled to resort to warm under-tone substitute hair colors that don't have quite enough ash tone in it no matter how hard I try. You see? It actually is a really big deal.

I don't even know what I'm saying anymore. Hello, exit cue. 

A Random Thing Or Two-sday


Long-sleeve tee: LOFT (similar). Denim shirt: Target. Pants: F21. Shoes: Nine West (similar). Necklace: LOFT (similar). Sunglasses: LOFT. Purse: H&M. Lipstick: NYX, Electra.

1) I'm itching to put up our Christmas tree and decor, but Matt is protesting. Those "after Thanksgiving we'll decorate" folk are wacky ;)

2) Fact: Ryan Gosling built the kitchen table (you know which one I'm talking about!) in The Notebook to prepare for his role as Noah (source).

3) I can't stop listening to this song. It's one of those that has been around for awhile but never gets old, no matter how many times you keep it on replay. His voice is dreamy and what I imagine honey would sound like if it could sing. That could actually be a fun game to play, the whole "what would this food sound like if it could sing?" Let's play it. What would a tomato sound like? Salt? Gouda cheese?

4) These are the coolest headphones ever. I'm loving the whole wrapped wire thing. Sure beats the heck out of an ugly white cord. Christmas stockings, here we come!

5) Would you rather live in a world with no stripes or no polka dots (I know, it's hardly imaginable!)?

Origami Owl Necklace Giveaway


What better way is there to celebrate living in a marvelous country where we are free, thanks to those that have fought and do fight for our freedoms, than by having a giveaway? From a wonderful, small business owner no less! Answer: There isn't one.

Today we have a super-duper, absolutely magnificent giveaway from Deb's Lockets of Origami Owl. I am going to let the lovely Debra give you a little background info on this beyond cute jewelry business.

"As an Independent Designer with Origami Owl, I'm so excited to introduce you to such a unique and inspirational company. Origami Owl began back in the winter of 2010 by 14 year old Isabella. A young entrepreneur fueled by the desire to raise enough money to buy herself a car for her 16th birthday, she started the company with just $350 worth of babysitting money. Today, Origami Owl offers their unique and personalized lockets that are completely customizable.  Charms, engraved plates and dangles can turn and ordinary necklace into a story all your own. Feel free to browse my website, and be sure to like my Facebook page to see Origami Owl news, specials and fun locket ideas.  I'm excited to share the Origami Owl story with you, and can't wait to see what kind of locket you come up with--each one is truly original."

Deb is offering a locket as a giveaway to one lucky reader! The winner will receive a Medium Silver Locket with ball chain, your choice of a small or medium engraved plate (see website for available wording), and 1 charm

If you can't wait for the giveaway to end, I don't blame you. These necklaces are a staple you can wear with every outfit, and they would make the perfect Christmas gift. Just a suggestion if you can't think of what to get for your sister, mother-in-law, or friend that has everything! :)

Enter via Rafflecopter below! Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

My Ears Hurt

Outfit details// Shirt: LOFT (on sale). Pants: The Limited. Hat: UO. Sunglasses: LOFT. Scarf: LOFT (similar). Bracelets: H&M. Boots: MIA (similar).

We have a tiny problem developing currently as Luke is getting bigger (he's already 10 months! What?!) and navigating his small world. The issue is screaming (as documented 2 pictures above). Whenever I tell him no, it results in a blood-curdling, high pitched squeal that emits in little spurts. The kid is a literal pip-squeak.

Is this normal? Or is my child just becoming spoiled? I have been scouring the internet and mommy forums to see if this scream thing is just a stage or a deeper-rooted beginning of manipulation and game of wits with mama. I understand children test their limits, but I want to nip this behavior in the bud before we have a full-fledged Supernanny intervention (I kid, Luke is a good egg other than the no thing).

We are trying the distraction approach and using a firm "no" which is working somewhat, but he still literally gets red in the face if I take something away from him that he isn't supposed to have and really loves (like ice cream...) 

I am hoping you seasoned mothers can ease my woes and literal headache from the shrieking. A penny for your thoughts, please and thank you!