YAPPY HOUR - THE NEW HAPPY HOUR

I'd like to introduce you to a new twist on "Happy Hour."  Meet the five happiest dog parents and the five coolest four-legged kids in town. As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday I thought it would be a real treat to introduce you to our yappiness happiness. Buster & I never thought life could be so happy when Yappy Hour rolls around. 

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There is no doubt when the ten of us are together,  no matter what's going on with us or the world, we truly realize how blessed we are that our 4-legged children have brought us together. As you read below you'll see how much we've shared together, our age ranges from 53 to 94 so there's a lot of wisdom and life experience between us all. One thing we have in common for sure besides our pooches... we love to travel, eat great food, drink fine wine, get a fine education on scotch and enjoy a perfect margarita that only Doreen can serve up. Meet our Yappy Hour Gang.

 Our happy place is Doreen and Joe's home, their door is always open, so much so we just suggest "why don't we go to Doreen and Joe's"  Occasionally we'll jaunt up to Shorty's house for a beautiful sunset, cocktails and discuss our "pawsitive" attitudes. Almost every day we meet at the same time, and like clockwork, when we begin to chime in with our texting, the kids are ready to go. Literally, if we're not out the door the stare-down begins, the toys are dropped at our feet and an occasional whine begins.

        Meet five reasons why you might want to begin your own Yappy Hour

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No leash needed, these kids have no interest in leaving each other's side. We do have rules, stop at all corners and No Street! 

Let's meet the gang

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Tony Williams & Shorty

When Janet asked me to jot down a few thoughts on our puppy playgroup I recalled the words of Stanley Coren, the famed chronicler, and author of many canine books. He writes: "In the thousands of years since humans first domesticated dogs we have genetically manipulated them to socialize easily and to show friendliness almost indiscriminately.”

How true these words are about our four-legged friends, yet that same willingness to "show friendliness almost indiscriminately" cannot be said of us, the two-legged human beings. Deep and meaningful friendships and true compassion for others sometimes get lost in today’s hustle and bustle… Yet somehow, some time ago (I think 6 years now!) our little group of dog lovers managed to find each other in a small park on the edge of West Hollywood and Beverly Hills. Our dogs linked us. Sweet Sadie, abundantly generous with her affection. Beguiling Bizou, deceivingly seductive and loving. Classy Collette, extraordinarily exquisite and elegant. And Beautiful Buster, a living teddy bear full of wisdom and passion. 

Each day with a wag of a tail or bark from the mouth, our dogs express their gratitude for their afternoon play time. This blog allows me to express my gratitude for our magical, loving and supportive group of friends - all connected initially through our dogs, yet now linked inextricably for life. In this season of gratitude, we all have a long list of items for which we must give thanks… but know that my Yappy Hour friends sit at the top of my list.

Hugs and licks to you each… and my best wishes for an amazing season of Gratitude to one and all!!!!

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Meet Keith Cox & Sadie

YAPPY HOUR!  What a concept, right? When I took a risk to take my beloved four-legged Spiritual Offspring, Sadie, to the unofficial park at the corner of Doheny Drive and Santa Monica, I never expected my life to be changed, enhanced, blessed, and enriched. The risk was because it is not unusual for the dogs to run and play off leash there. This “park” is adjacent to a very busy and congested intersection. The reward has been the familial relationship that has been created for both me and Sadie. What has now been dubbed “The Yappy Hour Crew” is, in fact, a coming together of 5 individuals (and occasional spouses) that share a deep bond? When we converge, (which we attempt most days) at what is HAPPY HOUR in most social settings, we are indeed happy. Yes, there is the occasional traditional concoction of an adult beverage, but the emotion of happiness transcends that. It is a result of our open and honest sharing, our mutual love of food, drink, and social activities. It is the result of our unconditional love for our canine family members, and it is because we are conscious, transparent, honest, loving, and even sometimes dysfunctional with each other. Familial, in other words. We have shared many highs and lows with each other. There have been birthdays, holiday, and even memorial celebrations of both humans and canines, moments of sitting vigil as a loved one is passing on, countless hours of discussion on food and drink, and great enjoyment of the attempt to perfect the margarita. And the consensus is that Doreen (or The Lady Doreen, as I call her) has the winning recipe. From a spiritual sense, the Universe brought us together at the perfect time and in the perfect setting. From a human sense, we have tended to the healthy nurturing of this familial bond and I believe we are all the better for it. Many have said it is the hardest club in Beverly Hills to get in… and that is true! Not because we are snobbish and exclusive, but because of the reverence for the beauty, love, connection, and sacredness we share as this little YAPPY HOUR family! 

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Meet Harvey Slosburg & Bisoux

For so many years I've had the privilege and the joy of spending time with my Yappy hour friends. Our friendships developed so organically over the years while sharing common interests, not just our dogs (kids), but so much of our lives. It seems we are all grateful for each other and the time we have together. When we are all together it makes this big city feel like a small town.  While walking together or throwing the ball, we share our daily lives, our joys, challenges, health, family, politics, and of course the “must try” new restaurants or cocktails. It seems what we share the most is gratitude for our friendships and the unique way we found each other. 

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Meet Doreen, Joe & Colette Wallach

We are 5 people that met accidentally at a small park that we made into an unofficial dog park. All of us came from different backgrounds, different religions, different sexual orientations, the only thing we had in common was that each of us had a friendly dog. Yet, we combined perfectly. Each of us brings a different outlook, wisdom, and sensitivity to our daily discussions.For example, just yesterday, our discussion started with:  How do you like to eat your corn on the cob? On the cob, roasted, cut off the cob, mixed with mayo and parmesan, how about combining corn with sun-dried tomatoes? Then the discussion continued to Astronomy, and how huge the universe is. Did we know that a Black Hole is a dense material that nothing can pass through? Our sun is 93 million miles away. The light from our star (the Sun) reaches us in 8 minutes. Light from the nearest star in the sky takes 4 years to reach us. How we are not even a grain of sand when compared with the size of the universe. And on to religion...

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We love to eat, drink and laugh and share our Netflix favorites.  We spend hours chatting about the newest restaurants, the coziest bar scene, are we staying in or going out for dinner. These discussions continue while our dogs are chasing the ball, eating mud, digging in the sand, eating bees, or just relaxing. 

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We love being together and making dinner, or just cocktail parties. For example, one member made a birthday party for his four-legged son and featured different food courses named after each of our pets. Colletuce cups (minced chicken lettuce cups) for my daughter, Colette. Split Bizoup (pea soup) for Bizou, Frozen Ice Cream Sadie-witches, and finally Chilled Buster Custard. Not all of our gatherings are for fun.  When my mother was passing, everyone came over to my home (my mom lived with me) not just to help me but also to help my mother pass to the other side.  We chanted by candle-light, and our metaphysical minister guided her through her passing. This was a  magical experience. Then we all had drinks and dinner. We laughed and cried. We had the best time.  My mother did not die that night as the doctors had predicted, (we all felt she enjoyed the party too much didn’t want to leave).  She held on for another couple of days. After my sweet Sophia passed (almost 18years old)  immediately we celebrated her life with tears and champagne. We are just there for each other. I really can not express how I feel except to say that I love each and every member of our Yappy Hour Family. Every single day is better because of you.

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Thank you, my dear friends, for your generous hearts and taking friendship & family to another level. The world's a better place because of you. Here's to more walks, more talks and a lot of Yappyiness! 

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  Happy Thanksgiving, I'm so grateful these spiritual pooches formed our tribe. In some way, on some level, I think they all knew they had a job to do with forming our "gang".  May we continue to grow young at heart and wiser together. Happy Thanksgiving, with gratitude...xoxo  Buster & Janet

 

Dig a little deeper

Dig a little deeper

Got a dog?  Why not put a group together, and create your own Yappy Hour. Getting outside walking and enjoying the company of your 4-legged best friend and making new friends can change your life. Pets create joy and bring people together, they can build communities, break down barriers between people and pave a way to a friendship you could have never imagined. 

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Here's to you Sophia Wallach, We love you!

LEOPARD FAUX-FUR JACKET

Are you looking for a fun leopard faux-fur jacket? I found one for you! Here's my new favorite faux fur jacket with a cool boxy fit. Thank goodness leopard print never goes out of style. No matter how old you are it just feels fashionable and fun..and a bit edgy.

Everyday offers something new the minute we step outside.

Everyday offers something new the minute we step outside.

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If you invest in a great pair of leather leggings or pants those too will be the gift that keeps on giving. Here I'm wearing Helmut Lang. 

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If you can't find a camisole that's the best length for you, try buying a slip on the longer side take a little elastic around the waist then pull the extra material over the thin elastic band. Stuart Weitzman is still one of my favorite go-to's for boots.

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This holiday season have fun, It's so important for us to enjoy life!  Do the math... that'll get you dancing!  If you were an animal who would you be?

              “When a woman becomes her own best friend life is easier.” 
― 

Location; Courtesy of my friend Tony Williams in Beverly Hills, CA.

THE FRANNE GOLDE COLLECTION

Oops! You caught me in my "Magic Pants" Are you familiar with Franne Golde Designs?  Franne Golde is fairly new on the scene and so far she's been a hit! In fact, Adam Glassman; O Magazine's Creative Director, officially dubbed them as "the magic pant, because everyone needs go-to black pants." Here you'll see a few of my favorite pieces for style, comfort, and the right price. On-the-go, traveling or everyday life, Franne's got you covered for all season's and it's made with love right here in Los Angeles.

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You will find that everything Franne makes is well thought out. Her clothes are seasonless and timeless. They are pieces you can wear as a foundation for bolder, statement pieces or as classics on their own. Nothing is clingy, boxy or baggy—just figure flattering!  Use my code GG15 for your 15% discount. In support of Alzheimer's Awareness month, a portion of sales will be donated to Music Mends Minds. Franne's husband music producer Paul Fox was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer's and in 2016 she launched her brand Franne Golde. Join me and let's support Franne and others in finding a cure together.

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Cozy up in style with this Camel Swing Coat.

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I will say this Jetsetter Wrap is a must! Not only is it lightweight and so soft, it's also reversible. 

Necklace by: Encircle NYC / Luggage by: Calpak / Boots:Alias Mae

Necklace by: Encircle NYC / Luggage by: Calpak / Boots:Alias Mae

Are you searching for the perfect travel wrap? Here it is!  Feel perfectly put together and cozied up in The Jetsetter. I'm wearing the Classic Crop magic pant in black / Katharine Buttondown.

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Holiday travel coming up? Pack your Magic Pants & your Jetsetter Wrap!

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I'm literally living in these Cropped Black Pants and my Katharine Buttondown. Everything about this pant works in your favor. Franne wants you to feel fabulous when you walk out the door, you'll find these simple designs will take you anywhere and you can easily mix them with your other personal favorites.

Wonderful Gift for you or someone you love. 

Wonderful Gift for you or someone you love. 

FRANNE GOLDE -"It all started with the pants. After years of looking for the perfect black pant, I grew exhausted. If only I could combine all my favorites into one. Coming from several decades of being an award-winning songwriter and always relying on my ability to create from nothing, I decided to make them myself" You can also follow Franne on Facebook for updates on new inventories, and share your story of your favorite piece!  You can read Franne and Paul's story on her website

BRIDGING THE GAP WITH THE BOHEMIAN CROWN - STEPHANIE ABRAHAM

Welcome to Bridging The Gap - Catherine Grace Oconnell is bringing 100 millennials and midlife influencers together to blur the boundaries, put an end to labels and divisions that no longer serve us on this creative journey. Age is simply a number, it's our attitude on how we look at life and helping others that matters. Meet my millennial Stephanie Abrahams of The Bohemian Crown

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I graduated from The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio majoring in Fashion and Retail Studies. I grew up in a suburb of Columbus and had a lovely childhood with very supportive parents and grandparents. My great-grandfather and grandmother came to the United States from Lebanon in 1916 where they raised seven boys and one girl. Times weren’t always easy, but with hard work and dedication, they made ends meet in a small town in Athens Ohio. After my grandfather attended The Ohio State University, he went onto to Law School and eventually opened up what is now the family law firm in Columbus, Ohio. He played a major role in my life, and I always considered him a second father to me. We lost him unexpectedly to a heart-attack when I was just 13 years old. I still get upset from time to time but I know he is always with me, and we continue to carry on beautiful traditions with his brothers (my great uncles), cousins, and the rest of our big Lebanese family. We are loud, fun and accepting of everyone so I’m sure you can only imagine our Holiday’s. 

 

 Throughout college, I interned at Nordstrom and had the opportunity to move to NYC for a bit to intern for Rampage. Those experiences, along with education have paved the way to where I am at now. They were great learning experiences, and I am grateful for every one of them.

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After styling at Saks Fifth Avenue, and buying for a local boutique, I decided to it was time to leave the retail industry. I started my blog in November of 2015 to continue my passion for styling. At the time I was working at my father’s Law Practice prepping for the LSAT, and ready to change career paths all-together, but I still knew I wanted fashion apart of my life in some way. It wasn’t until about six months ago that I realized the Law was not for me and that I had found my true passion which to no surprise was blogging about fashion among other topics. In April of this year, I went to blogging full-time and never looked back.

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For me, fashion is a way of expressing myself, and I truly feel there aren’t rules. I find it refreshing when I see someone wearing something that may not be the hottest, trendiest thing on the scene. It allows people to tell a story and is a form of art. My Biggest goal is to inspire others to dress how they want to rather than tell them how they should dress. Style has no rules in my world.

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My style is a mix of luxury, and boho chic, although most days you will find me wearing comfy yoga pants and an oversized tee or sweater. It depends on the day and how I am feeling. I love dressing up and accessorizing over the top pieces, but some days I love throwing on a pair of denim, a tee and a pair of vintage booties I got from a consignment shop. That is the beauty of fashion; you don’t always have to be just one style.

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I recently just got engaged to my fiancé in September during NYFW! I have to say he did a wonderful job and we are over the moon excited for our wedding next year. We have 3 fur babies that keep us on our toes and bring so much joy to our house. Kenny and I have been together for about four years and have been through more than most couples have that have been married for 38 years. Kenny received his third open heart surgery in June of 2015, which went exceptionally well. There was a little bump in the road as we like to say where there was a complication not caused by the surgery itself. After going into cardiac arrest, the doctors weren’t sure if he would make it; therefore, we all had to say our goodbyes a few times throughout a period of a couple weeks, and that is something unexplainable. I never left his side, and with lots of prayers and family surrounding him, he recovered even stronger and healthier. That experience made me realize a whole lot about life and changed me. I thank God every day that Kenny is here with us and we both get to continue our life journey together. 

Kenny and I are very laid back and enjoy spending time with each other and our families as much as possible. We also enjoy exploring new restaurants and up and coming areas of our city. Friday nights though are dedicated to Dateline, ha! When I am not working, I enjoy a good book, relaxing with my pups or working out.

As far as things I can’t tolerate. Any type of bullying or putting people down. Gossiping and drama are the worst and gets you nowhere, so when I hear people starting to do this, I politely remove myself from that situation. It’s not the type of genuine, uplifting individuals that I always surround myself with. I like to have a good time and get to know all kinds of people who enjoy good, genuine friendships that support one another. My goal is to bring people together and be positive in anything that I do. We only live once, and I go throughout my life living it to the fullest with passion, love, and tons of humor!!

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 When I first began my blogging journey two years ago there were four millennials who taught me so much. I love their savvy tech knowledge and combining that with a little ageless wisdom we can become a powerful team. It's an ever-changing business in the influencer world and sharing our experiences with one another only opens more doors for us all. Here's to Bridging the Gap and yes...we are absolutely Stroger Together!  xo Janet

Congratulations Stephanie on your upcoming wedding! I know you will be a beautiful, and no doubt a stylish bride.   Thank you, Catherine, for including me!

GIVING BACK WITH PHILOSOPHY - CELEBRATES WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY

In honor of today being World Mental Health Day, I am proudly partnering with the Philosophy family to share some amazing products, and to start a discussion about mental health and well-being.  encourages the practice of self-care, not only in replenishing the skin, but the mind and soul as well placing significant focus on Mental Health.

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 This company with a conscience donates 1% of all U.S. net profit sales on all products to its  Hope and Grace Initiative, which supports local organizations working to empower women through the treatment and prevention of mental health issues. More than 450 million people worldwide suffer from mild to serious mental health issues such as post-traumatic stress, depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder-- all of which disproportionately affect women.

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This year, I'm pleased to share the newest products from Philosophy's Amazing Grace and Pure Grace Rose fragrance collection. I love the lightness of these floral scents. They're so feminine and the minimalist packaging looks pretty and clean on my vanity. Bonus? The inspirational messages featured on each of the glass bottles--a Philosophy signature--serve as daily reminders of the brand's commitment to celebrating truth and beauty and kindness. They give me a boost of positivity each time my eye catches them. That, and knowing that this is a brand that celebrates the human spirit and graciously gives back to its community inspires me to spritz generously and often!

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With its Hope and Grace Initiative, Philosophy has become the first major beauty company to place a deep focus on, and make a brand-wide continuing financial commitment to, this important cause. The proceeds are distributed by an independent non-profit organization with guidance from mental health and well-being experts and impact thousands of lives each year. I hope you can join me and be part of the Philosophy family that gives back.

Here are a few tips from one of my favorite thought leaders Gabrielle Bernstein;

Here with Entrepreneur Sandy Abrams & Gabby Bernstein

Here with Entrepreneur Sandy Abrams & Gabby Bernstein

  • Begin each day positively. Happiness is your choice, so if you wake up feeling grumpy, remember that you can choose to be happy.
  • Think of yourself as a lighthouse: It's OK to feel your feelings, good or bad (in fact, it's much better than disassociating from them), but use the lighthouse idea to rise above the trauma in your life and allow it to flow freely around you.
  • Move. The human body needs to move, and movement is imperative for the lymphatic system to work properly and to oxygenate your cells. Bounce, jump, dance, or do whatever it takes to move the tension out of your body and get your blood flowing.                           

Thank you for reading and remember, every little bit helps, don't forget to take care of your mind, body, and spirit. The world needs more women like you.           xo Janet

ALIAS MAE SILVER BOOTS

Have you purchased your silver boots yet?  I've always been a fan of shiny objects, and this year with "all that glitters is silver and gold" the fashion feels and looks like a flower bouquet that makes you want to kick up your metallic heels. Below I've styled two outfits that go from day to night with my silver Alias Mae boots.

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Five years and over 300 boutiques later, Australian-made leather footwear label, Alias Mae, is officially making its debut in the States. Uniquely designed and exclusively hand-made, the brand offers a fusion of contemporary and cutting-edge shoes, ensuring a style for every fashionista. Alias Mae's price points range from $100 to $300,  That's refreshing! 

SHOP THE POST HERE

White Turtle Neck from; A World Curated - Use GRATEFUL17 for your discount code.

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Like Nancy Sinatra said "These boots are made for walking..."

Clutch Bag; Reyna Icaza

Clutch Bag; Reyna Icaza

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AG black coated stretch sateen Jeans look like leather and move like cotton. 

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Silver boots are definitely having their fashion moment. Show me your shiny boots! Leave me a comment,  send me a question or sing me a tune... "One of these days these boots are gonna walk all over you"   Nancy Sinatra

AFTERNOON WITH NEUTROGENA & NICOLE KIDMAN

It makes perfect sense that Nicole Kidman and Neutrogena have teamed up for their new Rapid Wrinkle Repair Creams. Nicole is the Global Brand Ambassador for Neutrogena and why wouldn't you want Oscar winner, Emmy winner and an all-around fabulous female on your team.

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Neutrogena puts on amazing events and their brand Ambassadors are always empowered and caring women. Nicole was beyond lovely, gracious and funny. It was truly a treat and always fun to have a little girl-talk about skincare.  Nicole just turned 50 and we spoke about how freeing it is to understand that aging's a gift.  We also spoke about how you begin to appreciate your time on a whole other level.

See Q & A with Nicole below                                         

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Rapid Wrinkle Repair - Neutrogena has developed a super-emollient cream that offers an option for dehydrated skin with the power of retinol. Dermatologist agrees that retinol stimulates the skin cells underneath the epidermis - not only on the top layer. Retinol is highly regarded as one of the best substances in fighting the signs of aging. It gives the healthy skin cells underneath the chance to become the epidermis, that's where dead skin cells are collecting. This is what gives aging skin that dull and tired look. 

SHOP THE POST-

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RAPID WRINKLE REPAIR MOISTURIZER DAY with sunscreen SPF 30 - Retinol SA helps with diminishing the look of age spots. the Hyaluronic Acid helps with plumping moisture to your skin for hydration.

RAPID WRINKLE REPAIR NIGHT MOISTURIZER - Retinol SA - Glucose Complex - Hyaluronic Acid - 

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WRAPID WRINKLE REPAIR EYE CREAM - Targeting those fine lines & crows feet. I find that dark circles are definitely reduced after one week of using the eye cream.

NEUTROGENA RAPID WRINKLE REPAIR REGENERATING CREAM - Apply twice daily, morning and night to face & neck. Joined together are hydrators with retinol so it's gentle enough for daily use.  Retinol / Hyaluronic Acid / Glucose Complex

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Nicole had been a fan of Neutrogena before joining the iconic brand. Her skin is fair and she said she regularly applied their sunscreen. During our interview, Nicole shared with Melissa Meyers and me that sunscreen is a must and she's consistent with making sure the whole family is protected from the rays with 100+ coverage.

Neutrogena sunscreen is SPF 100+ and water resistant up to 80 minutes and the #1 Dermatologist Recommended Suncare. Don't leave out your neck and your hands. I like to keep a tube in the car, living in sunny L.A. and spending much of my time in traffic I have more sun damage on the left side of my face, neck than the right side. Now I apply before I hit the road.

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Try their Hydro Boost lip treatment with Hyaluronic Acid. Beautiful shades along with the perfect nude lip

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Meet Dhaval G. Bhanusali, MDFAAD - If you live in Miami or NYC, lucky you! Melissa & I did our best to convince him to extend his practice here in L.A.

Beautiful setting by One Nine Design at Eric Buteraugh Gallery.

Beautiful setting by One Nine Design at Eric Buteraugh Gallery.

Thank you to Neutrogena for a special afternoon with Nicole Kidman and introducing us to Rapid Wrinkle Repair. 

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If your skin is sensitive to retinol you might want to try Neutrogena's HYDRO-BOOST 

Cleansing Gel - This lightweight gel cleanser transforms into a silky lather that removes makeup and impurities. With hyaluronic acid - soap free, oil free, paraben free.

HYDRO-BOOST hydrating serum - Instantly absorbs to deliver hydration.

HYDRO-BOOST water gel - Hydrating oil-free moisturizer so you can wear alone or under makeup. 

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Neutrogena has focused on women's beauty for many years...since the 30's to be exact. There is a reason it's still a favorite of women from across the globe.  We may not all walk the red carpet, but we sure want to feel like we do. Thank you to Neutrogena for an exciting afternoon with gracious Nicole Kidman and introducing us to Rapid Wrinkle Repair. 

*If your skin is sensitive to retinol you will want to check with your doctor to see what works best for your skin type.

Here's to aging gracefully! 

Q & A with Nicole

Q - How have your own personal views about aging changed?

A - When I was a teenager I never thought about it, not even in my thirties, it then becomes more about time. I want to look good, but it's about time. There are so many things I still want to do. It's more about time and being healthy

Q - Do you feel 50? or do you feel like age is just a number?  What age do you feel inside?

A - No, you never feel 50, I know that I have children who are 9 & 6 and I want to be able to be there for them. I have a mother in Australia and I want to be there for her. At this particular age, you have children and you've got parents and you have to take care of everyone including yourself. 

Q - Do you use the sunscreen?

A - Yes! I use the 100+ and I use it on my kids too, It doesn't sting their eyes, and it doesn't break you out.  When Neutrogena came to me, I said yes. This retinol really works, if I use a straight retina a cream I break out and get really dry. The combination of the retinol and the moisturizer, I can use every night and feel like it's really helping my skin.  

Q - What do you do with your skin when you're not working?                                                                                                                      

A - I moisturize and I don't wear a lot of makeup, I love hydration.  I tend to be dry, and I love hydrated lips. I love the peachy lip balm.

Q - What are your favorite Neutrogena products?

A - The Rapid Wrinkle Regenerating Cream & the Ultra Sheer Sunscreen. When Neutrogena came to me, I said Yes!. This retinol really works. If I use a straight retina A cream I break out and get really dry. The combination of the retinol and the moisturizer, I can use every night and feel like it's really helping my skin.  

Is she that tall?  Yes!  Is she that beautiful?  Yes!  and she's that Gracious! 

 

 

                                         

THE TIMELESS TRENCH COAT

Ready for the rain!

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Fall is in the air and it's a perfect time to update your trench coat for the new season. Turn your fall wardrobe into that old Hollywood glamour feel with a simple fall trench coat. I found this blush pink trench coat at Nordstroms and It's on sale!  Get ready to launch a stylish fall look in your city as  youtransitioning from one season to the next. 

WHAT I'M WEARING

Closed Cropped Jeans

Hermes Scarf

White Loafers

 

Faux Leather Trim Long Trench Coat

SHOP THE LOOK HERE:

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Pop of color

By far my favorite accessory is always a scarf.

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Invention of the trench coat is claimed by two British luxury clothing manufacturers, Burberry and Aquascutum, with Aquascutum's claim dating back to the 1850s. Thomas Burberry invented gabardine fabric in 1879 and submitted a design for an Army officer's raincoat to the United Kingdom War Office in 1901.

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In 1850 Thomas Burberry created the first iteration of the timeless trench coat. Marlene Dietrich was my personal favorite trench coat wearing dame. She brought the outerwear option to the world of women's fashion with her sultry, and strong feminine flair. Do you have a favorite dame? or broad??  Google around for a screen siren from the past and find one that you can embody their aura... Pretend, dream a little...dress up and let your imagination take you anywhere you want to go.

TRENCH COAT DAMES:

BRIGITTE BARDOT / CATHERINE DENEUVE / GOLDIE HAWN / TWIGGY / FRANCOISE HARDY / JACKIE KENNEDY / AUDREY HEPBURN / KATE MOSS / YOU...

If you're going to fall, fall in love with you... all else will fall into place...

                                                                       Me.

 

THE CULVER HOTEL - THAT MAGICAL PLACE

 Welcome to The Culver Hotel located in the heart of downtown Culver City. This historic hotel was built in 1924 by Harry Culver and continues today to steal the show. My friend and blogging partner Melissa Meyers and I have an affinity for anything old-school glamour and The Culver Hotel offers just that, and it's a perfect place to meet, catch up on life and enjoy a little cinematic history.

The Cowerdly Lion in the corner of this photo was actually quiet brave.

The Cowerdly Lion in the corner of this photo was actually quiet brave.

If you live in the Los Angeles area and you're searching for a new escape for a morning meeting, an elegant breakfast, lunch date, or just want a change of pace mixed with old Hollywood history, then don't miss out on this historical landmark. 

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When's the last time you got to catch up with a friend and feel like you've escaped for the day? We're fortunate to live in a city where dreams really do come true. Did you know that most of the cast of The Wizard of Oz lived here during the filming of the movie?  Melissa and I both loved that iconic film and looking out the window imagining a day in the life of one of the most memorable films in history felt a bit surreal. Be sure to ask questions when you visit, this hotel is filled with historical myths and mystery.

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Vintage and Glamour, that's what you'll experience here. You can't help but feel the energy and imagine what it must have been like when Joan Crawford, Douglas Fairbanks, Greta Garbo, Frank Sinatra, Ronald Reagan and more dined and smoozd behind these door, "if these walls could talk."

Whispering Angel

Whispering Angel

The Culver Hotel has been one of my favorite go-to's for a spark of creativity. They say it's haunted... who knows, maybe Glenda the Good Witch is waving her magic wand over us all as we enter this historical haven.

       "You've always had the Power, my dear, you just had to learn it for yourself" Glenda, the good witch.

The Grand Lobby

The Grand Lobby

Maya Mallick who now owns this iconic property has reimagined The Culver Hotel into a glittering gem. Maya’s eye for design only adds to the charm of The Culver Hotel. Every item is personally picked and has a special place. Wherever your eye takes you, it feels like you’ve stepped into the past with a modern flair. The entryway is filled with rich colors and texture. This iconic landmark is becoming an alluring hot spot and Maya has managed to do so without losing the architectural integrity of the building.

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 The Grand Lobby also serves as a second restaurant and bar, with a patio garden nearby offering casual food and dining throughout the day. There are plenty of intimate places to sit back and enjoy the view along with great service and delicious food. In the evening you'll be enchanted with live jazz, and that Culver City cool. It's so much more than just a hotel.

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Melissa's Lunch: KALE CAESAR SALAD - White anchovy, radicchio, parmesan, garlic croutons 

My Lunch: COASTAL FARMS MIXED GREENS - Candied pecans, goat cheese, balsamic vinaigrette w/ Salmon

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Congratulations are in order! The Culver Hotel turns 100 years old September 23rd.  Join the Culver Hotel for the party of the century celebrating 100 years of Culver City and the 10th anniversary of the historic hotel's remarkable revitalization. Saturday, September 23rd, 2017, 8:00 PM

Don't miss The Velvet Lounge- located on the Mezzanine Level - Reminiscent of a 1920’s ‘Speakeasy’ with a twist of a Parisian boudoir. The Velvet Lounge is open Thursday through Saturday after 8 pm.

Also available for private parties and events.

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  Melissa and I would like to thank everyone at The Culver Hotel for a fun filled day of history, kindness and our beautiful meal. Located at 9400 Culver Blvd.  

See you soon!

See you soon!

                            Just like they say in the movies "That's a wrap." 

Melissa and I feel so fortunate to have The Culver Hotel in the city where we live. The staff is gracious and passionate about the history and they're happy to have you. There's a lot of exciting projects that are happening in Downtown Culver City and it just might be The Yellow Brick Road to an exciting time. Be sure to schedule your next breakfast, lunch or dinner meeting... just click your heels together three times...

Here's a fun story; Charlie Chaplin was even the owner for a while until legend has it, he lost the property in a poker game to John Wayne.

Fact; 1938 – The Wizard of Oz is filmed in Culver City. Much of the cast, including all 124 ‘little people’ also known as the ‘Munchkins’, stay at the Culver Hotel. 
1939 - Gone With The Wind 

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Here are the details for The Culver Hotel 100 years Celebration. We hope you can join us there!

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INSTYTUTUM - MY FAVORITE HIGH PERFORMANCE SKINCARE LINE

We all want our skin to look and feel healthy and by now we know how important it is to be consistent with our skin care routine and when we find one that delivers a noticeable difference...that can be exciting, so exciting that you want to share that information with women everywhere. No, It's not about erasing our lines... we've earned those! But, let's face it, it feels great when our skin is radiant.

Lifestyle & beauty blogger Melissa Meyers has been introduced to so many skin care lines over the years and is always attending beauty events along with discovering the latest treatments. I value Melissa’s opinion so I wanted to share her personal blog post about Instytutum with my readers. After using Instytutum consistently for one month Melissa and I both became proud Brand Ambassadors, and honestly, we are loving our results! 

MY FAVORITE HIGH-PERFORMANCE SKINCARE LINE

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It can be a challenge to find the BEST skin care product launches with so many options out there! Part of my job as a lifestyle blogger is to road test new products and then recommend the ones with proven results to my glow girl friends. The past month you may have noticed on my Instagram that I have been posting quite a bit about Instytutum, a new high-performance skin care brand from Switzerland dedicated to creating flawless skin. I am proud to be a brand ambassador for them, a relationship that was sparked by my love for the products. Read on for more details on Instytutum, how to get some complimentary samples and a 20% discount on all products.

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I first discovered Instytutum at a desk-side product launch meeting that I attended with my blogging partner Janet Gunn of The Grateful Gardenia who is now also a brand ambassador. After listening to a presentation on how this skin care line was different with impressive scientific results, we were given some samples to take home and try. After using them for a few weeks, I saw so many improvements in my skin that I personally reached out to the company to see if we could work together. Instytutum products are formulated with powerful cosmeceutical ingredients like Retinol, Peptides, Patented Stem Cells, Vitamin C, Glycolic Acid and more to improve overall skin texture and to firm the skin. After using the products, I noticed a significant reduction in fine lines and wrinkles, pore size and spots. Plus, they are extremely hydrating and plumping! 

Go to Instytutum.com and use promotion code FLAWLESSGG for a 20% discount on all products. As a special gift to my Glow Girl community, Instytutum will also send you a complimentary sample size kit including the Cleansing MilkTriple Effect Peel, and Lifting Cream

The body cream is the best ever!

The body cream is the best ever!

instytutum

Three of my favorite product include the serum, the lifting cream, and the eye cream. 

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Since I have been using Instytutum, my skin is more refined and noticeably smoother, firmer, and even toned. All products are formulated without parabens, sulfates, mineral oil, and synthetic dyes. Yay! I feel extremely confident that you will see fast results and fall in love with this Swiss skin care line too!

For more information on Instytutum and to order products, visit their site here. Remember to use the promotion code FLAWLESSGG at check out for a 20% discount. 

xxMelissa

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Instytutum. The opinions and text are all mine.

If you want to stay updated in beauty, fashion and overall lifestyle living, check out her website and sign up for Melissa's newsletter right here.

Email Melissa or myself if you have any questions.  Keep Glowing & Be Grateful.

You're one step closer to Flawless Skin. 

You're one step closer to Flawless Skin. 

A LABOR OF LOVE IN BLUEJEANS

Happy Labor Day weekend!  Thank goodness...one more holiday is here. Labor Day means different things to different people - barbeques, watching that last summer sunset at the beach, the new school year begins, and yes... the end of summer. With all the family time and good food, we often forget the reason we are celebrating. Besides no work or school, it's the American holiday dedicated to appreciating the American workforce. Part of the American culture is the forever loved blue jeans, so take a break from rolling up your sleeves and enjoy your three day weekend wearing a pair of your favorite blue jeans. 

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"I wish I had invented blue jeans. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity - all I hope for in my clothes."      Yves Saint Laurent
 

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I'm a fan of the big cuff, these are one of my favorite go-to's Adding a scarf to any clutch or tote gives a bit of that French girl flair. Reyna Icaza designs beautiful clutch & totes. Tell her I sent you! 

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 Share your favorite look with me! Send me a message on Instagram over the Labor Day weekend, I want to know what jeans do you love to slip into!

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White Blouse - Ann Fontaine

Here's a fun fact; Dungaree is another way of saying blue jeans. It is an old Hindi word meaning coarse, calico or denim. The word came from the name of a village in what is now Mumbai.

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Have a fun, and relaxing holiday weekend. Enjoy!   

“There is a fountain of youth: It is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.”   Sophia Loren

LONGCHAMP - THE PERFECT TRAVEL TOTE

Let's get carried away with Longchamp. This French luxury house was founded in 1948 and to this day is still considered a favorite amongst chic travelers. Over thirty million of these Le Pliage universal nylon tote bags have been sold since the product’s launch in 1994. You can spot these effortless-chic bags on men and women, younger and older, and with prices ranging from $95 to $145. Longchamp says, ten Le Pliage bags are sold every minute across the globe and there are always new colors and styles to choose from.

Feel confident when you travel with Longchamp

Feel confident when you travel with Longchamp

One of my favorite pastimes when traveling is checking out carry-on luggage on busy worldly travelers.  There's always an abundance of travelers proudly toting around a Longchamp Pliage.

Bee- autiful Necklace by Tracy Smolin

Bee- autiful Necklace by Tracy Smolin

Longchamp has turned this basic nylon tote into a full-blown luxury icon. So much so, you'll find these on the chicest of chic French female travelers.  

Pick your color, pick your size and I usually pack them all. 

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I'm here in New York with Lyn Slater, The Accidental Icon.  Lyn's website was the first blog I subscribed to when I was googling stylish women forty-five and over. If you don't know who she is I highly recommend you check her out. Lyn is just that... a style icon and sooo much more. Here we are strolling the streets of New York and of course, she arrives with her Longchamp. By the way, after our meeting...off I went to the Longchamp store and purchased her exact bag. Once again I was inspired by Lyn..

 I bought my first Longchamp tote in Capri. I personally like adding to my Longchamp collection while traveling.

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 I use this smaller bag a lot, running to work out, on the plane if you need to freshen up, toss in your beach bag. After you check into your hotel room and you're not in the mood to carry your larger bag, you can turn it into a casual clutch. You can also add a fun touch by wrapping the handle with a twilly scarf.  Since it's made of nylon clean-up is simple. Just use a handy-wipe and you're good to go.

Culver Hotel - Culver City Los Angeles / Dress- Gratus

Culver Hotel - Culver City Los Angeles / Dress- Gratus

So if you're planning a trip soon or strutting around your own town, why not travel in style, while adding a little French elegance with Longchamp.

     “For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

ANGUILLA - BELMOND CAP JULUCA

Welcome to Cap Juluca in Anguilla. This luxury beachfront retreat in the British West Indies is known as the best beach in the Caribbean. Cap Juluca was designed and developed by Linda and Charles Hickox almost thirty years ago and has recently sold to Belmond Ltd., a hotel, and leisure company that operates luxury hotels, train services and river cruises around the world. Renovations are underway and by the end of 2018, get ready, because Cap Juluca's pristine stretch of sand is about to transform into a tropical show-stopper.

The resort's crescent-shaped Maundays Beach is the main attraction, along with the clear, turquoise water and soft white sand.  Water sports are a must... enjoy sailing, kayaking, paddle boarding, and snorkeling, or just float in luxury.

Cap Juluca was originally named for the rainbow spirit of the Arawak whose energy can still be felt amongst the sway of the palms and the tropical rain that comes and goes. The Arawaks were farmers and fishermen, and much of what is known about them today comes from the petroglyphs and archeological remains discovered in two ceremonial cave sites on the island.

Several years ago we visited Cap Juluca for the day, and we always said, "this is a place we must return to"  So happy to have returned for more than one day, let the vacation begin. Next time I stroll down this hallway there will be a brand new Cap Juluca,.

Happy hideaway in paradise.  Expect 80°F monthly mean temperature, with water temperatures generally ranging between 70°F and 80°F. If you choose to travel by private boat charter or shared sea shuttle, you can take the ferry from St. Maarten Depending on immigration and selected transportation, the boat trip from St. Maarten takes approximately 25 – 40 minutes, arriving at Anguilla’s Blowing Point. Shuttle to the hotel is approximately fifteen minutes. Commercial airlines fly direct to St.Maarten with a short boat ride to Anguilla or by air via Seaborne Airlines or Tradewind Aviation. 

Anguilla's main gateways are:

  • St. Maarten/St. Martin (SXM), 7 minutes
  • Puerto Rico (SJU), 45 minutes
  • Antigua (ANU), 45 minutes
  • St. Thomas (STT), 45 minutes

Looks good, feels good...it's all good.

Cap Juluca takes pride in their fresh meals with a garden-to-table approach, along with resort-grown herbs, and spices. There are some exciting new dining concepts on the way!

Sweat Betty Top - Hermés Scarf 

Sweat Betty Top - Hermés Scarf 

My favorite activity was riding horses with the popular Zambezi  Enjoy a little history of the island while touring surrounding beaches and one of my favorite moments, taking a cool plunge in the Caribbean. Don't miss out on this tourist attraction! You can book through their facebook page or guest services at the front desk. Maybe you've never settled up... no worries these horses know the program, you do tnothng but sit back, take in the view and enjoy the experience.

And you'll need plenty of this!  ColorScience Sun Protection. You'll find yourself logging in a little more beach time here at Cap Juluca.  Shop the post below.

Why not begin your day at CapJuluca with a morning jog, a walk on the beach, or a swim in the Caribbean Sea. It's almost a mile long and from sun rise to sun set, this velvety beach never gets old.

Here's a peek at the rooms for not too much longer, every villa has an ocean view. Enjoy your open shower after your fun in the sun. New renovations are on the way.

 No filter needed at Cap Juluca. The evening is as stunning as the daytime. Follow Cap Juluca on Facebook to stay updated on renovations, and for the reopen.

From your room right to the beach. Nudz Beachwear designs the perfect vacation cover up for all occasions. Be sure to use my discount code GratefulGardenia30 for your perfect cover up.

From your room right to the beach. Nudz Beachwear designs the perfect vacation cover up for all occasions. Be sure to use my discount code GratefulGardenia30 for your perfect cover up.

Anguilla style is laid-back chic, barefoot elegance, and a place to rejuvenate the soul. There are no cruise ships, casinos, or traffic,  just breathtaking beaches, and that Caribbean vibe. 

Next time you're ready to plan your vacation be sure to look out for the grand opening of Cap Juluca. You can follow them on Instagram @belmondcapjuluca. Cap Juluca is one of those special places, along with the people who work there. Belmond Hotels create the most amazing escapes, and after this extensive renovation, you'll be ready to book your next hideaway.  Thank you, Cap Juluca for a beautiful experience to add to our family memories, and we look forward to a brand new you... with that same old welcoming spirit.

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“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta

CHARCOAL YOUR WAY TO HEALTH AND BEAUTY

Are you ready for a little detox inside and out? Several months back I went for my yearly physical and I requested to have my mercury levels tested. I was having neck pain, my left hand was twitching (chalked that up to way too much time on my phone...) along with numbness in my hands and feet. My husband recommended I have my mercury levels tested, he too had experienced some of the same symptoms. Both of us are healthy eaters, enjoy our workouts and love sushi, that being said too much fish, sushi especially is not a good thing. His doctor suggested reading up on charcoal and try drinking one charcoal drink a day from Kreation Organic for a week. Here's a fact about Charcoal - It literally binds to toxins, and that binding effect makes it a great cleanser, inside and out. 

Between the toxin absorbing qualities of activated charcoal and the hydrating effects of coconut, Charcoalade is also a powerful hangover remedy. Activated charcoal is also used to treat poisonings, overdoses, spider bites, and stomach bugs. It absorbs most toxins up to 60% making it ideal for detoxing. It also helps whiten your teeth!

Between the toxin absorbing qualities of activated charcoal and the hydrating effects of coconut, Charcoalade is also a powerful hangover remedy. Activated charcoal is also used to treat poisonings, overdoses, spider bites, and stomach bugs. It absorbs most toxins up to 60% making it ideal for detoxing. It also helps whiten your teeth!

My test results showed my levels were definitely at a high level, over 11 and Level 9 would be a much better level for me personally, my doctor recommended first of all...I lay off the sushi. Ok, Kreation here I come. Here was my routine - Three days a week, after my favorite workout class I would head to Wholefoods grab my favorite sushi while doing my grocery shopping and that would be my lunch- that's 18 - 20 pieces of sushi a month. This has been my routine for a little too long, and it was time to adjust my intake. There is so much information on Charcoal and I highly recommend reading the articles highlighted below if you haven't read up on high levels of mercury and the effect it can have on the mind and body. After a week of  Kreation Charcoalade, and zero sushi, my neck pain was significantly better, along with the numbness and the twitching of my hand. Literally after a week of drinking one juice a day things changed for the better. This worked for me, check with your doctor if you have any of these symptoms or other concerns that might lead you to think this relates to you.  It was a wake-up call on a few levels and to pay attention to what's going on with our oceans, and which fish is higher in mercury than others, along with the healing powers of charcoal, a natural detoxer. The articles I've listed below are worth a read if you're having any uncomfortable aches, pains or fogginess.

If you're not crazy about the taste of the Charcoal drink you can take 2 capsules a day with this Activated Charcoal. There are so many products out there, maybe you're not sure where to start, It's definitely worth reading about. After all, for over 10,000 years, healers from Chinese Medicine, Ayurvedic Medicine, and Western Medicine have used activated charcoal to soak up poisons and improve intestinal health through a process called “adsorption” which means “to bind to” rather than “to absorb.”  Be sure to read about dosage, you also don't want to take too much charcoal.  Now let's look at charcoal for beauty.

I'm sure you're reading about the benefits of charcoal everywhere too, even in the beauty world. It does make sense if you think about it. Charcoal has been around for centuries and cultures. Native Americans relied on it to heal wounds and treat intestinal and digestive issues. The Japanese use it for dental hygiene, it's also a teeth whitener! It was first introduced as a beauty exfoliator in 1990 by Origins. I decided to try it out myself, if I felt better on the inside with the Charcoalade why not begin the beauty experiment on the inside?

Little Barn Apothecary created this Charcoal + Aloe Foaming Face Cleanser. This activated charcoal will leave your skin feeling tone!  I first discovered this from Love Goodly - A subscription box service and shop that delivers cruelty-free and toxic free beauty and healthier brands.

Think about all the free radicals we encounter the minute we walk out the door. Our phones, computers, door knobs, etc... toxins from the world around us clog our pores. When your pores aren't clear, neither is your complexion. Activated charcoal can draw out those impurities, leaving the pores clean.

Vitamin Sea Beauty - Black Sea Mud Charcoal Cooling & Antioxidant face mask will increase the circulation in your skin, between the Black Sea Mud & the Charcoal, your skin feels so clean along with tightening of the pores.

 Active charcoal acts like a magnet,  say goodbye to oil, dirt and other environmental debris from clogged pores. After eight to ten minutes, rinse with warm water and you're good to "glow"  I'm all for drawing out the toxins, charcoal seems like a good place to begin. I'll save my sushi cravings for a later date.

My search continues in all things health and beauty. I would love to hear from you some of your discoveries along the way for becoming your best self. Here's to the sharing of knowledge for all of us. 

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Articles on Charcoal :

https://blog.bulletproof.com/the-strangest-way-to-detox/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mark-hyman/mercury-how-to-get-this-l_b_469358.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mark-hyman/autism-mercury-toxicity_b_497047.html

 

VITAMIN SEA BEAUTY IS CALLING YOU

Have you had your Vitamin Sea today? Are you ready for a dose of beauty?  The Sea is calling you! On Wednesday, July 26th at 10 am CST  (8 am PST) and 7 pm CST (5 pm PST)  I'll be live on EVINE,  an American cable, satellite, and broadcast television network. I hope you can join me for the premiere launch of Vitamin Sea Beauty, developed by Mark Freeman; from Freeman Cosmetics, Mark is a true native Southern California, born and raised and comes from three generations of beauty professionals. Now Mark brings us these rich & luxurious masks and face scrub.  Vitamin Sea Beauty was created last year while on a family vacation and Mark noticed how fresh and rejuvenated his skin felt, just from being in the sea. He thought, why not take the powers of the Sea and develop the most innovative skin care with the latest technologies and natural ingredients. Vitamin Sea Beauty, promotes that same healthy, youthful skin, just like you are stepping out of the sea. 

WHY THE SEA?

The sea’s abundance of natural and pure beauty benefiting resources help revitalize, nourish, and retain moisture in our skin. Sea plants are rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins, and amino acids...all things we need for proper body balance & function. These plants provide hydration, healing, detoxifying, and restorative properties, while defending against aging, protecting against UV lights, and helping to prevent acne. Naturally occurring in and around our great bodies of water, the ingredients in our VitaminSea.beauty line promote healthy, youthful skin

Who doesn't love the way the skin feels when we're by the Sea? We look and feel hydrated, moisturized and even rejuvenated. I personally long for that feeling all year round. These masks are clean and simple, use three to four times a week for eight to ten minutes a day and you'll begin to see a brightness with your complexion, and you'll feel great for taking time for yourself, and your skin will thank you.

Sea Salt & Coconut Brightening Face Scrub; Sea Salt is a natural exfoliator and the added coconut oil helps to lock in the moisture. I have thin and sometimes sensitive skin, this scrub is not abrasive at all. My teenage son is using this on his face for blackheads and it's working! Plus it's hard to resist the light fragrance of coconuts. Thumbs up review for the men and the teenagers in the home.  

Sea Kelp & Cucumber -Soothing & Smoothing Mask;  Cucumber is a natural toner, just mention cucumbers and I'm daydreaming about the spa. Sea Kelp is loaded with calcium, fluoride, and magnesium, along with being rich in antioxidants. Sea plants are resilient and constantly adapting to our often-changing environment.  Cucumbers are great for reducing those dark circles under the eyes along with reducing swelling and puffiness. Your skin will feel and look hydrated. That's what we lose so much of after we hit forty and over. Having dry skin leads to a dull appearance, and that leads to aging skin.  Masks are a simple and proactive way to get your skin healthy looking again.

Black Sea Mud & Charcoal- Cooling & Antioxidant Face Mask -  Black Sea Mud increases circulation in your skin, helping bring vital nutrients to your cells and you can begin to say "bye-bye" to toxins. Charcoal's natural detoxifying abilities draw out impurities, and mask's high concentration of essential minerals will nourish, soften, and dramatically improve your skin's tone & texture. My husband used this mask and said "his skin looked healthy & clean, along with, he felt good for taking a little time to care for his skin"  This is also a fun gift idea for your girlfriends or teenagers. Give the gift of a return to the Sea. I just love that Vitamin Sea Beauty is for the whole family...families that "masks" together stays together...

Blue Sea Kale & Grapefruit - Deep Pore Exfoliating Mask - If you're more on the oily side you'll love this mask. The first thing I noticed when I rinsed off this mask, my skin was brighter. The Vitamin C from the grapefruit along with Vitamin A, C, K from the Sea Kale is another excellent way to wake up your skin. I also have age spots that appeared a little lighter.  I just love that Vitamin Sea Beauty is for the whole family...families that "masks" together stays together...Or I could just be glowing from the reflection of the family member starring at me...

EVIVE LIVE...Here we come!

EVIVE LIVE...Here we come!

We are so excited for our premier launch here at Evine  this Wednesday, July 26th at 10 am CST (8 am PST) & 7 pm CST (5 pm PST) Please join us and call in! Be one of the FIRST to purchase Vitamin Sea's Mask collection. Here is the link for your local channel or Watch us live right here on Evine Live  

Clare V Leopard Tote - Diane Von Furstenberg Dress

Clare V Leopard Tote - Diane Von Furstenberg Dress

If you're  someone on the go, all you'll need is eight to ten minutes, three times a week, and you will begin to see fine lines diminish, age spots will lighten and your skin will feel rejuvenated and hydrated. Vitamin Sea's not replacing your regular routine, they're  just adding to it. Here's to feeling beautiful and refreshed at any age and bringing the tranquil feeling of the Sea to your own home. Thanks, Vitamin Sea, for bringing us a little closer to paradise.  

" By the Sea By the Sea...By the Beautiful Sea...You & Me, You & Me...Oh, How Happy We'll Be...

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SUMMER SANDALS - ITALIAN STYLE

Summer's still here and so is my never-ending search for sandals. I've spent most of my sunny days in Eddy Daniele and Carmen Sol, both from Italy. Having great sandals makes packing a lot easier, and simplifies your wardrobe. Here are a few of my favorite sandals that keep me skipping along colorful and carefree.

Travel Tote Jade Tribe

Travel Tote Jade Tribe

Happy Feet - Eddy Daniele - Once again Made in Italy, I love the uniqueness and elegance in how they combine the stones with the leather and the pearls. You can shop the post below.

Ripley Rader matching pants and top - Encircle NYC necklace with Eddy Daniele navy blue sandals and the perfect accessory... Buster

JadeTribe Tote

JadeTribe Tote

These Carmen Sol's took me everywhere. We went hiking one afternoon, not really knowing the trail would be as challenging as it was, and these babies held up great!  They're made in Italy...that explains it, love Italian anything...  Carmen Sol is a Jelly Accessories Brand focused on the Resort Lifestyle and inspired by the owners ten years experience in managing retail stores inside resorts in the Caribbean, and yes the hike was in  the Caribbean in St. Barth's. The collection includes shoes, handbags, accessories, and swimwear all made 100% in Italy.

Valentino Rock-Stud Sandal

Valentino Rock Stud Slide

Gucci Floral Slide

Gucci "every girl needs pearls" even on her feet.

Carmen Sol colors that keep your Summer styles going strong. Here's just a few of my favorite colors.

All products are made of non-toxic Jelly Material (Italian PVC) and are Prop 65 compliant. All packaging for the Carmen Sol bags and shoes are made of an eco-friendly and recyclable material, including dust bag and shoe box.


Carmen Sol started in 2006 as the leading luxury retailer in the Caribbean and currently has several stores in the Best Resorts including Casa de Campo and Hard Rock Hotel Punta Cana.  Owners Carmen Sol Espejo, a New York native and retail empress with over 20 years' experience and Sebastiano Di Bari, an Italian brand builder and former CEO of Italian Fashion companies, created their own brand together in 2016.

No worries if you spill anything or get caught in a tropical rain storm,  just dip your tote or sandals in the deep blue sea and you're good to go. 

How about a clutch that fits in the tote that fits in the suitcase with ease.

If you can't make it to Italy anytime soon, why not treat your feet to a little Italian flair. I look forward to walking a mile in my Italian sandals in search of that feeling of an endless summer. What are your favorite sandals? Do you have a brand you continue to add to your collection?

What are your favorite sandals? Do you have a brand you continue to add to your collection?  

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“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”      F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
 

WELCOME TO HOTEL LE TOINY - ST. BARTH'S

Planning our family vacations are one of our favorite topics. We look forward to pulling out a big calendar, the kind you buy at Office Depot, a map, and the conversation begins. It usually starts with discussing our bucket list, along with places we'd love to return to. Several years ago we visited St. Barth's only for the day and the conversation always came back to, "we've got to get back to St. Barth's" Excited to return to this charming Caribbean island, we booked our flights, our ferries, The Hotel Le Toiny  and little did we know we would fall so in love with this laissez- fare Caribbean paradise.  Make one trip, and you’ll find yourself immediately hooked. Hotel Le Toiny has now been ranked among the best hotels in the world for 2017 by Condé Nast Traveler (the 2017 Hot List) and Travel + Leisure. 

Hôtel Le Toiny is committed to luxury. They first opened their doors on November 1, 1992, with 14 villas and In 2015, the hotel was acquired by current owners, Charlie and Mandie Vere Nicoll, who initiated a multi-million dollar renovation. 

Welcome to your tropical home away from home. Hôtel Le Toiny. Get ready to be wowed the minute you walk through the door.  It's always refreshing when you find those magical places that go the extra mile.  Le Toiny is a "must visit spot" and once you visit...you'll know why.  It's about a 20-25 minute drive (off season) from the alluring town Gustavia and navigating St. Barth’s can be a tad intimidating if you’ve never been. We chose to take the ferry from St. Maarten to St. Barth's which was quick and efficient, and soon as your boat hits the dock you're met by a driver from The Le Toiny, they offer complimentary airport and ferry transfers. We decided to rent a car and once again effortlessly our mini cooper arrived at Le Toiny shortly after we did. I highly recommend renting a convertible, it's a super fun island to explore.

Walking into Le Toiny will take your breath away. Sitting on the cliff it overlooks the sea, seems like you're floating on a cloud overlooking the Caribbean. The salon awaits your arrival, you're so charmed with the decor, there's no need to rush to your villa. December. 15th, 2017 just in time for the high season, eight new villas will open. The debut of the new villas coincides with the hotel’s 25th anniversary.

Lady Bee Osborn captures that St. Barth's vibe with effortless elegance.

Lady Bee Osborn captures that St. Barth's vibe with effortless elegance.

Privacy and elegance define Hotel Le Toiny, situated in an area of the island referred to as the “Côte Sauvage.”  The villa suites are tucked away on a gentle slope overlooking the Bay and the beautiful sea. The hotel’s neutral color palette and understated decor feesl like you’re living in the pages of an interior design magazine. 

Every seating area is open-air for that outdoor living experience...a bit like a tree house. It's private, It's perfect, it's intoxicating. 

Knock-Knock you're home. The hotel completed a full redesign in 2015 by London-based Lady Bee Osborn, not only is it visually stunning, there is this aura of the ultimate escape on the entire property. You might become a bit weepy when it's time to check out.

Each one-bedroom villa includes a spacious master bedroom, separate sitting area, kitchenette and large terrace with a private infinity pool. One thing for sure... you'll wake up happy!  But first coffee.

A large bathroom featuring a soaking tub, shower overlooking the sea, vanity for two, along with a large walk-in closet. Plenty of space for the goodies you'll find from The Toiny Beach Club's boutique! If you find something you want to try on but feeling a bit sandy., no problem. It will be delivered to your room to try on at your convenience.

Wake up, dive in, start your day. Your personal paradise is right out your villa, along with this stunning view of  “Côte Sauvage"  

Cheers! Here's to gratitude and delicious coffee with the Le Toiny family, enjoying their gracious staff along with a fabulous breakfast.

Completely let go amongst the coconut trees

Completely let go amongst the coconut trees

Get ready to unplug - The road to the beach club is still the natural terrain. Instead of modifying the road for its vehicles, Le Toiny adapted its vehicles to the road with two safari style customized Land Rover Defenders used as a shuttle to transfer guests to and from the hotel and the beach.

Who needs shoes...

The Le Toiny Beach Club is delish! Simple, elegant Meditteranean inspired cuisine. Enjoy a full beach service with loungers under the shade of Coconut palms. The Beach Club is full service, the menu arrives on a chalkboard and updated on a regular basis, and if it's not on the menu...no problem.  Bon Appétit!

Enjoy your extended meals under the palms with The Beach Club crew and your loved ones. 

Don't miss this charming boutique, perfectly curated by the owner.  A pair of historic 18th-century cottages sits amongst the coconut grove, tamarind field, garden, orchard and pineapple trees. Enjoy a glass of rosé while you shop. 

I'm always in search for little treasures I can't find back home... special pieces that keep my vibe of St. Bath's going until my return. Poupette is a favorite brand of mine, and you'll find plenty of Poupette here, along with fabulous bathing suits, hats and island jewels. It's truly a treasure chest!

Take a journey to Shell Beach

Have lunch at Shellona

Have lunch at Shellona

Seashells galore,  Make sure to visit Shell Beach for an incredible sunset, along with the sound of the shells washing onto the shore.

Another local favorite is Colombier, an isolated haven accessible only by boat or a exhilirating 30-minute hike. The downhill trail to get there is deceivingly easy. The way back . . . not so much. I suggest going in the early morning to avoid the afternoon heat. If you enjoy a good hike, don't miss out on this trail.

We loved our daily discovery in our Mini Cooper, but don't be gone too long, You'll find yourself wanting to return to your Le Toiny family.

Serenity Spa Cottage

Surrounded by lush vegetation with beautiful views of the ocean, the Serenity Spa Cottage features a wide range of Spa treatments. Technicians use Elemis an exclusive cosmetic line. Your skin, body and mind will thank you.

 There’s a treatment room that accommodates a single or couple’s treatments. The fitness center is a perfect size, Le Toiny’s new gym features all the equipment you need for a complete workout.

Unwind, relax, and rejuvenate your soul

Come rain or shine Hotel Le Toiny's got you covered 

Doorway to Heavan - If you forget your beach tote, no worries...your villa comes with one you won't want to leave behind.

Hotel Le Toiny creates magic, It's moment's like these that keep you and you and your loved ones returning to that special place time after time.

Pack your bags...We're going to St. Barth's... music to my ears. Thank you Le Toiny, We walked away with wonderful family memories, a few new friends, and a love for your Caribbean charm... Merci!

Shop The Post:

Please see Instagram for all clothing and accessories worn in St. Barth's.

 

Getting There
There are no direct flights to St. Barth’s . . . unless you charter your own plane. If a PJ isn’t a possibility, the next best option is flying to Princess Juliana International Airport on the Dutch side of St. Maarten, where, upon landing, you’ll have to choose your own adventure for the final leg: a 15-minute plane ride or a roughly 45-minute ferry crossing. Flying will get you to paradise quickly, but the flight itself—a 12 seat puddle-jumper—is not for the faint of heart. (The runway in St. Barth's also happened to be one of the shortest in commercial aviation, you can watch a few youtube videos to see the exciting landings! Book your flights in advance on either Winair or St Barth Commuter, the only commercial airlines that provide shuttle flights to and from the island. We chose the ferry: an incredibly efficient option for an effortless arrival. Buy your tickets in advance on either Great Bay Express or the Voyager to secure your seat.

The Beaches
St Barth's offers diverse beaches. There are sixteen of them in total, each with its own special touch. Saline Beach you can get lost in the white sand that feels like velvet. Saline, like most other beaches on St. Barth’s, is simple—no bars, no shops, no restaurants. If you prefer a more vibrant scene, St. Jean is where Eden Rock and Nikki Beach are located. Surfers like Le Toiny or Lorient and the snorkelers at Gouverneur or Petite Anse. Cheval Blanc is another beautiful beach area.

Restaurants

Our favorite spot for dinner in town was Bonita. Latin-French food along with the ambiance was just perfect. Diverse menu, a D.J. with that groovy beat, When the sun goes down St. Barth's comes alive in whatever way that fits your style. 

Isola -  For Italian food lovers L’Isola is renowned for its sophisticated Italian recipes, prepared using only the very finest ingredients imported directly from Italy. An elegant restaurant, a true culinary experience.  

La Gloriette  - Delicious pizza and seafood, a place where you can feel like a local. We loved this place. So casual but so French. The food Is fantastic. The staff is lovely and there's no shortage of flowing Rosé. No shoes needed here, toes in the sand, pizza & wine in hand... I'm in!