Saturday, January 31, 2015

Pretty in Pleats

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog
 
This gorgeous pleated dress is perfect for a dressy Valentines night out! You could also pair it with metallic flats and a denim jacket for a cool, chic vibe! 
 
 

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog

 

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog
 
 




Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog

 
Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac, Forever 21 Pleated Dress, Valentines Day Date Outfit~Sunshine and Sequins Blog
 
What I'm Wearing
 
Dress: Forever 21
 
Blazer: JCPenney similar here at Target
 
Heels: Lulus
 


Aren't those flowers gorgeous! We headed to a local flower shop the morning of this shoot and I explained to the florist, in a vague sort of way, what I wanted. I love doing things on the fly and letting others creativity flow in the process.
 
As I could've gone with a red dress, I just couldn't find a red one I really liked. I chose this pleated dress because I liked the skirt. It makes me feel like I'm in the 1920's and we should head to the local speak easy. Plus, I thought I could easily add a baby blue sweater and flats to make a cute casual outfit, too.
 
 
As I wrote in another post, Mav and I don't usually go out on the most romantic night of the year. Usually V-Day falls on a weekday which means a short supply of babysitters for the munchkins. The last time we went out for Valentines Day on Valentines Day was many years ago while we were in Hawaii. That particular night we spent the night away at a hotel on Waikiki Beach. The best part about living on an island on perpetual vacation is you get to play tourist. We spent that Valentines night dining at one of our favorite restaurants, walking around Waikiki, barefoot on the beach, enjoying the sunset.
 
You see, Mav and I'd spent so many Valentines Days apart because of deployments we needed a reminder and reality check of what normal life was. Instead of focusing on the times we've had apart, this is the experience I choose to remember. I don't compare one year over another because its impossible to compete with or repeat this experience. Life is best lived in the present.
 
 
 
 
Yours Truly,


~B
 
 
 
In case you didn't know, I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to read my words and check out my style ideas and photographs. Thank you for reading my little labor of love. This Valentines Day I wish you and yours a very lovely day. Here are a few of my picks for Valentines Day. Chloe and Dior perfumes are my go-to scents for a date night.
 
 
The Icing


Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Chocolate Free Valentines Cherry Apple Crisp

It's been a while since I posted a healthy food much less a healthy dessert but with Valentines Day days away and decadent treats around every corner, this calls for a serious intervention. I call it "stop right where you are and drop the chocolate". Using cherries, apples and spices like cinnamon and cardamom to bring a little spice to this delicious bowl of goodness, it's a Valentines Day dessert to break from the norm, an outside of the box kind of change. I know you are thinking "where is the chocolate" but be assured this delicious, healthy recipe will not disappoint.



Valentines Day Gluten Free Cherry Apple Crisp


It's been years since Mav and I actually went out on Valentines Day. Mostly because we have so few moments to ourselves, we don't want to spend them waiting for a table at our favorite restaurant. For the most part, we spend a quiet evening at home and exchange cards. That's it. Really. Since our "most romantic night of the year" dates are at home, I decided to come up with a fabulous healthy version of one of my favorite desserts: classic apple crisp. I'm going to admit that I have a bit of a sweet tooth. So I've spent the better part of too many years repurposing recipes into a version I can indulge in and not feel like I'm ruining all of my hard work of exercising and eating clean.


You ask yourself, isn't apple crisp a pretty healthy dessert anyway? Yes, it is. That's why it's my go-to dessert when we have friends over because it feels like a guilty pleasure but so isn't. This version is a gluten free, reduced sugar recipe that adds a little adventure for your taste buds, minus the decadent chocolate.
 
 


 
 
Cherry Apple Crisp
 
1/4 Cup Melted Butter (or all natural applesauce if you are dropping dairy)
2 TBSP Brown Sugar (if you don't want refined sugar use 1/4 cup of maple syrup instead)
2 TBSP Instant Gluten Free Oatmeal
1 TSP Cinnamon
1 TSP Cardamom
1/2 Cup Gluten Free Granola of Choice
3 Medium Size Apples, cut and cored
1/2 Cup Fresh Cherries or frozen if you can find them, halved
 

Melt butter in a microwave safe container. Add cinnamon, brown sugar, oatmeal, and granola. Mix well. Cut and core the apples and place in an 8x8 glass oven safe dish. I used fresh cherries I purchased during the summer when cherries are in season. I seeded and cut them in half and threw these in the freezer to use later. I just mixed them in straight from the freezer along with a little extra sprinkle of cinnamon and cardamom. Once these are in your dish, add the topping and sprinkle evenly over the top of your fruit. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until a fork easily pierces an apple.

If you are using the applesauce, there is not need to "melt" it obviously. Just mix the maple syrup with the applesauce then all the other ingredients. This makes a divine combination topping too. I've made it both ways and each is delicious.



Gluten Free Apple Crisp Gluten Free Apple Cherry Crisp Healthy Gluten Free Valentines Day Dessert~Sunshines and Sequins
Be Still My Heart Valentines Day Apple Cherry Crisp

 
If I figure this right (and I'm no dietician), each one cup serving is only around 120 calories. You could splurge and add a scoop of your favorite low fat ice cream for another 125 calories and still come in under that chocolate molten cake worth 500. Plus, this dessert offers the benefits of whole grains and fruit high in antioxidant's plus fiber. Cherries are full of vitamin c, fiber and have superior antioxidant's than even vitamin E. Apples are full of fiber and satisfy your appetite more than any other fruit, not to mention the whole "apple a day" thing. This dessert also makes a fabulous yogurt topping for your morning pick me up!
 

Gluten Free Dessert Gluten Free Apple Crisp Gluten Free Apple Cherry Crisp Healthy Gluten Free Valentines Day Dessert~Sunshines and Sequins



 
Gluten Free Dessert Gluten Free Apple Crisp Gluten Free Apple Cherry Crisp Healthy Gluten Free Valentines Day Dessert~Sunshines and Sequins



Gluten Free Dessert Gluten Free Apple Crisp Gluten Free Apple Cherry Crisp Healthy Gluten Free Valentines Day Dessert~Sunshines and Sequins




 
Most people crave a decadent chocolate dessert but I'm NOT a chocolate kinda girl. Yes, I know, I'm a rare species. One of a kind. When God made me, He broke the mold and all that. Or so I like to tell myself. Many would say chocolate and Valentine's Day are like pb&j, cinnamon and sugar or pumpkin and white chocolate. You simply can't have one without the other. But I say, lets start something new. Its a new year, time for a new you.


 
What can I say, I like to step out of the box for pretty much everything. Sure, I could pick the most decadent chocolate dessert I can find and then feel days of guilt for eating it or I can spend a few minutes putting together a delicious dessert that leaves those guilt feelings in the dust.



 
To a chocolate free V-Day!


 
 
~B




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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Poncho Sweater Redux

 
I'm bored with skinny jeans. I admit it. They are comfortable, yes. But cute to wear on date night? Meh, not so much. If I'm out with my man, I want to look cute with just a smidge of sexy. Soooo, I paired my Old Navy Poncho Sweater with my favorite pair of Lucky Brand flare jeans to create a super cool, casual date night outfit. Add a little sass with the Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac bag and some killer peep toe heels and this outfit says, sexy, classic, cool!
 
 
Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac Bag, Old Navy Poncho Sweater, Lucky Brand Flare Jeans, Date Night Chic How to Wear Flare Jeans How to wear a poncho~Sunshine and Sequins
Clutch: Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac Bag

Flare Jeans: Lucky Brand (similar here and here and some on sale!!)

Old Navy Poncho Sweater
 
 
 

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac Bag, Old Navy Poncho Sweater, Lucky Brand Flare Jeans, Date Night Chic How to Wear Flare Jeans How to wear a poncho~Sunshine and Sequins

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac Bag, Old Navy Poncho Sweater, Lucky Brand Flare Jeans, Date Night Chic How to Wear Flare Jeans How to wear a poncho~Sunshine and Sequins
This Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac bag is a classic. I love the added gold buckle detail along with the removable chain strap. It makes this handbag not only chic but versatile!

Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac Bag, Old Navy Poncho Sweater, Lucky Brand Flare Jeans, Date Night Chic How to Wear Flare Jeans How to wear a poncho~Sunshine and Sequins
Its all in the details:

Gold Bangles: Target here 

Gold Watch: similar choices here

Nail Polish: Carrie Underwood for OPI in Party Bus

Heels: Great options here




Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac Bag, Old Navy Poncho Sweater, Lucky Brand Flare Jeans, Date Night Chic How to Wear Flare Jeans How to wear a poncho~Sunshine and Sequins
 
 
Flare style jeans are by far my favorite style. They work well on any body type and flatter even a curvier girl like me. These Lil Maggie jeans that I'm wearing offer lots of stretch but never stretch out! The curve slimming jeans add polish and sophistication with a dash of sexy without trying too hard.
 
The pictures are crap because we got to the place to take pictures and realized we hadn't charged the battery to the camera. Yep, that's the life. So these were taken with my phone. Needless to say, only a few shots as we were excited to get our date night started!
 
I just had to share, though, because I love this outfit! Casual, comfortable, cool and chic! Perfect for date night!
 
 
~B
 
 


Find me on Instagram, Blog Lovin under Sunshine and Sequins or subscribe by RSS and email.

 
 
 
 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Glowing Skincare Routine

Valentine's Day is always a hit or miss with me. I'm either feeling the cupid vibes or I'm not. Especially since having major surgery a few weeks back, this mommy needs some pampering!
One thing I do believe in is a great skin care regimen and not sacrificing my 401K to get it. So lets get started on an affordable Valentines Day skincare routine to bring out your inner beauty in time for whatever your life may bring you on V-Day.


People have asked me over the years what I use on my skin. Until a few years ago, I didn't use anything special. I've always thought less is more. I didn't even use moisturizer mainly because my skin was so oily not to mention my skin sensitivity. I wear foundation sparingly (think once every 6 months, maybe), using specific brands I love, but that's another post. So these pictures you see on here aren't photo shopped, its all me. Plus, I believe skincare begins on the inside. As the old adage goes, crap in, crap out. But again, another post.
 




Affordable Valentines Day Skincare Routine for Glowing Skin Valentines Day Skincare How to Make your skin glow~Sunshines and Sequins
Here are the products I use every day.

These are the products I'm currently loving and using:
 
Toner: Being True Essential Soothing Tonic or Origins
 (The Being True Essential Soothing tonic not only reduces my skin's redness but minimizes my pores, too.)
Eye Makeup Remover: Take the Day Off by Clinique (the best one I've EVER found)
Moisturizer: Origins Starting Over
Mask: Sephora (not shown still waiting to get from Sephora)
 
Yes, you read that right. I don't use some fancy expensive cleanser or cleansing brush for my face. Not for lack of trying. These just don't work for my sensitive skin.



My Skincare Routine:

Daily

A.M.:
Cleanse
Tone
Moisturize

P.M.
Cleanse
Tone
(If I used eye makeup that day beyond the usual mascara, I use an eye makeup remover as mentioned above)
Moisturize
Eye Cream
 

1 x a week
 
Cleanse
Tone
Exfoliate
Tone
Mask
Moisturize (if you need it, the mask does well enough for me)
 
 Give yourself about 30 minutes for these weekly mini-facials and be prepared for glowing, beautiful skin!

 
Many people say they use eye cream in the morning but I only use it at night. This allows it to absorb in my skin while I'm sleeping. This skincare routine works for me. With Valentines Day right around the corner, its the perfect time to amp up your skincare routine and pamper your skin. Here are my recommendations after years of trial and error.
 
The background:
 
After my son was born, my skin changed. It lost its glow. Not for lack of trying, but the crap in crap out thing wasn't working as well anymore. So, began the quest to find out how to get a skincare routine that worked for me. For my very first Mother's Day, Mav gave me a spa gift certificate (I know its because he felt guilty for being deployed for not only the birth but the whole first year of our first child's life and we'd just found out his tour was extended another 3 months). His gift was the perfect pick-me-up for this exhausted mom. It wasn't just any spa he picked, but the best spa on the island of Oahu, the Spa at the Ihilani Marriot. It was heaven, bliss, wonderful.
 
 
 While at the spa, I wanted a complete overhaul, top to bottom. I wanted to look and feel like a better version of me! I chose a detox body scrub/wrap and a personalized facial. The aesthetician at the spa talked to me for more than 15 minutes to get an understanding of my skin care problems (super sensitive, prone to irritation) and then spent another 45 minutes giving me a facial with products to specifically address my skin. Talk about customer service! I walked out of there with over $150 worth of products (not $1500) and never looked back. My skin had never, ever glowed like it did that day. I totally recommend finding an excellent aesthetician who will take the time to address your skincare needs.


See, you don't have to spend $1000 to have great skin!


I used the products she recommended for years until I just couldn't find the company products anymore. I still use the toner, exfoliant and under eye moisturizer when I can find those. The mask and moisturizer are hit or miss. Sadly, I had to find something else to replace these products.

 
 While I was shopping on Sephora.com several months back, I found these masks and decided to try them. This one gives a glow so close to the one I experienced at the spa, I've stopped looking for the other mask. Plus the bonus, they're on sale! These masks are a steal right now at buy 4 get 1 free with code masklove for a limited time only! That's less than $6 a mask!


 
My favorite, by far, is the Pearl Mask. I notice visibly smaller pores and brightened skin tone after I use this mask. Plus the moisture and radiance is like nothing else. The bonus? These have never irritated my skin.



And you don't have to spend your kids college savings on your skincare.

 

 I do switch up my skincare products. I rotate them every six months or so. I also get lots of samples from Sephora and I try those. Switching skincare products is like switching shampoos, its good for your skin. At least it is according to my aesthetician and hair stylist.


 
Have a Good Day Lovelies,

~B


Still to come: Valentines Day Style

 

This is me, au naturel (except for lip gloss and mascara, of course) for my birthday, two years after my son was born and after I learned a great skincare routine. Of course I was tan (and had a super cute bob). I did live in Hawaii. Oh, those were great times!
 
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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Polka Dot Pencil Skirt and Tunic Sweater

As I was thinking of what look I wanted to style next using pieces from my closet, all I could think of was Vicky Vale's side swept hair from the 90's Batman movie. Kim Basinger as Vicky Vale is the end all be all of sophisticated chic. Just thinking of the black beret outfit makes me swoon. I literally copied every outfit and every hairstyle she wore in that movie. Here is my attempt at recreating her polished, sophisticated look.



Outfit of the Day:

Tunic Sweater: Gap (similar here and cute cropped one here)

Polka Dot Pencil Skirt: similar here at Old Navy

Shoes: Forever 21 (here)

Satchel: Kate Spade (similar here and gorgeous one here)


Outfit of the Day, Cozy Knit Sweater, Pencil Skirt, Kate Spade Satchel

Outfit of the Day, Cozy Knit Sweater, Pencil Skirt, Kate Spade Satchel


Outfit of the Day, Cozy Knit Sweater, Pencil Skirt, Kate Spade Satchel
I look like I'm about to sneeze in this picture :).

Outfit of the Day, Cozy Knit Sweater, Pencil Skirt, Kate Spade Satchel

Outfit of the Day, Cozy Knit Sweater, Pencil Skirt, Kate Spade Satchel

Outfit of the Day, Cozy Knit Sweater, Pencil Skirt, Kate Spade Satchel
This outfit is feminine, yet polished enough for the office.


Outfit of the Day, Cozy Knit Sweater, Pencil Skirt, Kate Spade Satchel
 
 
This handbag came in 3 different colors and I bet I spent 30 minutes in the Kate Spade store trying each one on in front of a mirror before I decided on this grey. I am so glad I did. This color works with the darker colors of Fall and just as well with the light pastels trending this Spring.
 
 
 
~B
 
Still to come: Valentines Day Beauty Tips: How to Make Your Skin Glow

Monday, January 19, 2015

Cozy Knit Sweater and Pixie Pants

These pixie pants have become a staple in my everyday wardrobe. They can be dressed casual for street style as in this outfit of the day or dressed up as in these two outfits here from a previous post. Since the weather's been on the colder side, I thought I would bring out a really cold weather outfit for my another favorite wardrobe item, this turtleneck crème sweater from Old Navy. I've really worn this sweater out this season. Not only is it the perfect cozy knit but the added turtleneck makes this warm sweater great for those cold days. As I've written before I live in a very temperate climate, meaning it rarely gets cold enough to warrant wearing a jacket. A comfy sweater and a scarf are warm enough even for me. As my husband says, I get cold when its 85 degrees in the shade.

Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color

Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color

Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color


Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color
Polka Dots and Pops of Color

Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color

Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color

Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color


Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color
 
Old Navy Polka Dot Pixie Pants~Old Navy Cozy Knit Sweater~Pops of Color
What I'm Wearing:

Sweater: Old Navy (sold out of this color but the black and merlot are beautiful as well)

Polka Dot Pants: Old Navy Pixie Pants

Shoes: Vans (here)

Blanket Scarf: Gap (similar here and its on sale for $13!! and splurge here)

Red Crossbody: Kate Spade (lots of options here and beautiful one here)



Happy Monday Ladies,

~B


Coming up on the blog: Valentine's Day Beauty




It's All in the Details

Shop the Look:

Sunday, January 18, 2015

His and Hers Casual NFL Football Fashion


The NFL football season is winding down with the playoffs in full swing. Wherever you choose to view this American pastime, whether at your local sports bar or your friends house down the street, you've got to do it in style. Jersey style.
 
This is a house divided during the NFL season. I became a fan of the Seahawks when we lived in Hawaii because the Seahawks games were always televised. Mav LOVES the Titans because he's always loved the Titans.

I took these two teams and put together casual outfits. One for me and one for him using classics that most anyone already has in their closet, just add the jersey. My styling ideas in this casual his and hers post, features our favorite NFL jerseys from Fanatics.com styled in two chic ways.
 
Using pewter accessories, casual boyfriend jeans and a gorgeous blazer, this feminine, casual women's ensemble works with any NFL jersey of your choosing from Fanatics.com. They have every jersey for every NFL team including women's, youth and toddler styles.


By adding a breathtaking statement necklace, a neutral satchel, and a sparkling manicure, this outfit is stylish and feminine.
 

Womens NFL outfit Seahawks Jersey



Now for the men. I chose this particular Tennessee Titans jersey from Fanatics.com not only because my husband and my son already own it, but because Eddie George was his favorite Titans player of all time. He does own a Chris Johnson jersey but I thought he would appreciate this much more. Not to mention, many moons ago when I was a fan of the Titans, Eddie George was my favorite player, too. Needless to say, when Eddie moved on, so did I.



His and hers NFL fashion outfits, Tennessee Titans Jersey

 
I put together this men's style using clothing Mav already owns plus a few added accessories. The blue in the button up shirt brings out the gorgeous cobalt in the jersey. The peacoat and cozy knit scarf add interest and warmth. This style works as well with any NFL jersey, just coordinate the colors. 
 
I don't know about you, but I'm ready for the post season! 
 
 
Go Seahawks!
 
 
~B
 

Friday, January 16, 2015

NFL Post Season His and Hers Office Fashion

What time is it? NFL playoff time! So you ask yourself, how can I show my team style at the office or after work party? These his and hers fashion ensembles show team spirit without a jersey.
 
I've styled men for years. I do have a husband, little boy and don't forget my own dad. My biggest hurdle in styling the men in my life is they don't take fashion risks. Men should step out of their comfort zone, occasionally. What better time than the NFL post season.
 
This house is divided among Tennessee and Seattle. I love the Seattle Seahawks and hubby loves the Tennessee Titans. It's been tough around here since Seattle has been do-mi-na-ting!
 
His and Her NFL Football Fashion

This ensemble, courtesy of Paul Fredrick, is a gorgeous and dapper men's style perfect for the office. What can I say I couldn't resist the blue suede shoes and blue suede belt. Yes and yes.  These elements add the perfect amount of chic style. Paul Fredrick knows how men should dress: stylish with a touch of intrigue. They have many different styles and colors so you can dress for your favorite team.
 
 
I haven't forgotten about the ladies. Here is a stylish way to show support for your favorite team: Seattle Seahawks Chic, Stylish, Office Fashion
 
His and Hers NFL Football Fashion, Post Season NFL Dress Outfit




 
Rock out with this chic Valentino RockStud Tote, Camel Coat, Old Navy Striped Dress and a gorgeous green pashmina to finish off this green and blue look. This ensemble easily goes from day to night. Add a statement necklace and this outfit goes from gorgeous to glam in 60 seconds! Go Seahawks!
 
 
 
 
~B

Monday, January 12, 2015

Lace Sweater

Kate Spade Handbag

Loft Lace Sweater, Kate Spade Handbag, Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night

Loft Lace Sweater, Kate Spade Handbag, Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night

Kate Spade Handbag, Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night

Loft Lace Sweater Kate Spade Handbag Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night

Loft Lace Sweater Kate Spade Handbag Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night

Loft Lace Sweater Kate Spade Handbag Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night

Loft Lace Sweater Kate Spade Handbag Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night

Loft Lace Sweater Kate Spade Handbag Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night


Loft Lace Sweater Kate Spade Handbag Lucky Brand Clogs Leather and Lace Date Night
What I'm Wearing:

Gray Lace Sweater: Loft great options here

Leather Clogs: Lucky Brand

Handbag: Kate Spade similar options

Leggings: Here



 

Hubby and I went out on a date night a several weeks back and this is what I wore I recreated it for a photo shoot. We had a blast and got a night away at the beach. It was a little on the chilly side but fun nonetheless.
 
Giving you a little catch up since this is my first post since the 2nd. I've been "out of the office" for the last week due to surgery but I planned far enough in advance to have several outfits shot and I will be posting those soon. Needless to say, I shot them and had all intentions of posting them ahead of time but got so nervous about the surgery I just couldn't get motivated. I'm feeling better now at least enough to post another outfit post. Taking care of myself as best I can and breaking the monotony of being bed bound by playing catch up on the blog. This is my great distraction.





~B