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Raving About In-Home Workouts

22 Jun

workoutstudio
workout2

reformerweightbench

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What is the best way to make sure there is no excuse for not working out? To have the ability to workout in the comfort of our own home. Going to the gym or exercise class takes effort and time; however, when we’re pressed for time, being able to workout at home is a lifesaver. Having a workout studio in our backyard was one of the best additions we’ve made, and something that we utilize often. In a small space, we just needed a few essentials to get a good sweat in for the day. For cardio, we have the option of the treadmill or the rowing machine. Both the The LifeFitness Platinum Club with Achieve Console Treadmill and the WaterRower rowing machine were purchased at Busy Body Home Fitness (http://www.busybody.com). When the rowing machine isn’t in use, it stores conveniently upright and leaves room for exercising on the Pilates Allegro Reformer (https://www.pilates.com/BBAPP/V/store/reformers/allegro-pilates-reformer.html), which can also be stored on it’s end. Hanging from a ceiling mount, is the TRX Trainer (http://www.trxtraining.com/), used for suspension exercised that utilize our own body weight from different angles for a total body workout. Ab gliders, a stability ball, and bosu ball are all great for core and strength exercises, as well as a ballet bar, LuluLemon yoga mat, and foam roller, which can also be used for stretching exercises. Light dumbbells, medicine balls, ankles weights, jump ropes, and resistance bands are also great products for home use that don’t take up much space. Speaking of saving space, the Hoist 5 Position Fold-Up Bench with Wheels and PowerBlock U-50 Weight Set (also from Busy Body) do just that. The super sturdy weight bench has 5 fast and simple adjustable angles for flat, incline and decline and folds flat with a convenient carrying handle incorporated into the design. The weight set also has a weight range of 5-50 pounds per hand that gives every 2.5 pound increment, replacing 20 pairs of dumbbells in the space of one pair. If all else fails and home gym or workout equipment at home isn’t feasible, a television, dvd player, and Insanity workout always does the trick. Summer is here, so we can all channel our inner Ballerinas and Muy Thai Fighters and work it out. I can’t help but rave about our in-home workout studio, but feeling good and looking good is definitely something we could all rave about.

Raving About A Camera Bag

21 May

camerabag

cameraessentials

camerapackedandready

Does new always mean better? In some cases, yes, but I have found that when it came to finding the perfect camera bag, old beat new by a landslide. When I was looking for a bag for my Nikon D7000 DSLR camera and accessories, everything new in store was boring, black, and made out of nylon with mesh pockets and plastic buckles; basically every bag for sale was very unfriendly to fashion. Not to mention, most of the big bulky bags were deceiving in what they could actually fit in them, requiring me to spend more money on an even bigger and bulkier bag than the already overpriced camera bag I was initially assessing. I began my search to find a camera bag that was functional and not black, something I could possibly carry around while wearing a dress. On Ebay, I found a Vintage Brown Leather Hard Case Marsand Camera Bag, with a top handle and shoulder strap. It was as if the camera bag gods heard the exact description and specifications of my dream camera bag and answered my prayers. It’s spacious, super cute, and comfortable. The padded and adjustable shoulder strap has been a savior when traveling, and I’m not worried about my camera being banged up because of the durable hard shell case that provides protection and although I don’t know quite how old it is, I know the quality of the materials will surely last for years to come. The bag came with two moveable dividers for configuration in the main compartment, which can be used vertically (which I have done), or horizontally for used of top and bottom space. In this section, am able to fit my camera, lens, external flash, remote, card reader, external hard drive, and lens protector with plenty of room to spare (I’ve thrown in my laptop charger, point and shoot camera, iphone, and cell phone battery pack, passport and travel documents, all at the same time). The interior is lined in a red fabric finish and the interior pockets (also fabric, not mesh), which I use to store things like extra batteries, lens caps, lens cleaners, memory cards, etc. There is also a front pocket that I use for the camera battery charger, cables, etc. I cannot help but rave about this purchase, it was the best $30 I’ve ever spent. Anything I could possibly need for taking pictures (for blogging), I got it in the bag.

Rave Worthy Birthday Party

11 May

twins

What do you need to throw a rave worthy birthday party for a set of four-year-old twins? Today we hosted that party for my bf’s niece and nephew, Evita and DeAngelo, and it was a huge success. Everything that was included in the party was a perfect recipe for a great event, leading to happy guests and happy twins.

birthdayparty

An awesome theme. Check.

giftsandfood

Birthday Boy. Check. Birthday Girl. Check. Gifts. Check. Great Food. Check. (King Taco of Pasadena’s Food Truck was a huge hit!)

jumpie

A jumpy. Check.

deangelocake

evitacake

bdaycake

Birthday cakes, cupcakes, and goodie bags. Check.

piratesandmermaids

Entertainment for children: A mermaid who can sing, do a magic show, and face paint; and a pirate who can lead a treasure hunt, engage the children in games, and tell jokes. Check

cakepops

Cakepops and chocolate covered fruit (all made by a family friend). Check.

poolparty

Perfect, warm weather, and a pool (with a lifeguard of course). Check.

makeawish

A happy birthday boy and girl surrounded by friends and family, with warm wishes and birthday kisses. Check.

Raving About Subic Bay and Gerry’s Grill

6 May

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What do most people do to get out of town and away from the hustle and bustle, the noise, and the sea of grey concrete of a big city? One option would be to head to the beach, to see the blue ocean and a backdrop of lush greenery. Subic Bay offers just that nice charge of scenery, just two hours away from metro Manila, driving on a road full of one pay toll after another. That’s where (thanks to Jax’s Dad, Mr. R) Jax, Di, their husbands and relatives, and Lin and I went to enjoy the day to relax, hang out, and ride jet skis. After a few hours on the beach and in the ocean, we ordered Filipino food from Gerry’s Grill. I had a refreshing Filipino drink called Sago’t Gulaman, and we all shared Pancit Bihon, Kangkong Ala Pobre, Green Mango with Bagoong, Calamares, and Tuna Belly. I couldn’t be in the Philippines and not leave without having Halo Halo, so I took advantage of the opportunity to order this amazing dessert topped with Ube Ice Cream. While it is considered summer here in the Philippines, we all had fun in the sun like it was spring break.

Raving About Petsmart Grooming

28 Apr

petsmart

Don’t we dog owners love it when our little babies are clean, groomed, and as cute as a button? Whenever I take my four dogs to Petsmart for baths, teeth cleaning, nail grinding, and trims for the small dogs and brush outs with the Furminator for the big dogs, we know they’re in good hands. The great thing about having a relationship with a grooming services is we can get our doggies scheduled and accommodated the same day, our dogs are already familiar with the people who are pampering our pups, and we can trust those people to do a great job. Carrie groomed Beau and Sophie and Tony groomed Cocoa Bean and Simba, and they came home extremely happy, looking good and smelling good.

Bangin’ Bangle Bracelets

24 Apr

animalbangles

Doesn’t every one love arm candy? Most people love them in the form of a smokin’ hot date in hand, but I prefer mine to be bangin’! and around my wrist… and lately, I’ve been raving about my animal bangle bracelets. It’s nice to have a few to mix-up and wear together or separately, depending on the mood. Kenneth Jay Lane makes a variety of animal bangles in a variety of colors like the snake, giraffe, and elephant pictured; however, there are also other vendors that sell bangles similar in style to KJL like the black and white tiger bangle that can be purchased for 80% less than the KJL retail price from the eBay store: Alilang Fashion Jewelry (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Golden-Toned-Metal-Alloy-Black-and-White-Enamel-Twin-Tiger-Cuff-Bracelet-Bangle-/350586859491?pt=Fashion_Jewelry&hash=item51a09aefe3). We can sport our favorite animal, start a collection, or continue to add to our zoo. Whatever our arms fancy, candy can come in all sorts, including lions and tigers and bears. Oh my!

Raving About The Agua Caliente

20 Apr

aguacaliente

Where is the best place to stay during a weekend attending the Coachella music festival? The Agua Caliente Casino, Resort, and Spa has to be the best… It has all of the amenities that any one could ever ask for in a hotel and more! Thanks to my bf’s mom, the sweetest, most generous person, who reminds me so much of my own mommy, our entire weekend stay has been comped, including food and beverage. The seven of us, staying in a beautiful suite with a conjoining room and an additional room across the hall, have taken advantage of in-room dining, dinners at The Steakhouse, meals at the delis, and snacks galore from the mini bar. Each day, we have the Fitness Center available for morning workouts, the pool and cabana with outdoor television available for lounging in the early afternoon, shuttle services available for transportation to and from the festival (huge plus; driving to the festival is not convenient at all), and gaming available on the casino floor and in the poker room at any time of the day and night. After seeing the Postal Service, Moby, Franz Ferdinand, Janelle Monae, Two Door Cinema Club, New Order, and Phoenix, we think we’re tired, but the poker tables are calling… A few hours later and it’s now 5am. The comfy King size bed it calling. After a few hours of sleep, the day will start again at the rave-worthy Agua Caliente and all of these amenities will still be available to us…

Raving About Vintage Style Luggage

18 Apr

luggage

Going somewhere this Spring? With so many places experiencing beautiful warm weather this time of year, it’s not hard to want to pick a place, pack up, and go! I have always been a fan of vintage-style luggage and cases, and a few years ago, I found a perfect suitcase by Steamline Luggage (http://www.steamlineluggage.com). The Correspondent Series Carry-On in white and brown has the look and elegance of yesteryear, but the modern convenience of a rolling suitcase. On one of my trips to the Cabazon Outlets, I fell in love with Gucci’s white and brown vintage luggage collection. I couldn’t stop raving about this line of gorgeous travel must-haves, so I ordered one of the carry-ons I saw in the window; I have used it on virtually every trip I’ve been on. Believe it or not, this spacious overnight bag fits under the seat on a plane. Another piece that I can’t live without while traveling is a Hartmann Tweed and Leather Train Case. Luckily I found one brand new on eBay and I use this to store all of my toiletries and cosmetics since it’s lined with a protective plastic interior and came with a handheld mirror. It also locks with a combination and, like most Hartmann pieces, is extremely well made. Having unique luggage makes it easy to spot in the sea of bags on an airport carousel, but the most important thing to have on any travel piece to make sure every one knows who owns it is a luggage tag. Lewis N Clark makes fun animal luggage tags serving as both an identification and an accessory to a bag. I have a few puppy dog luggage tags, which remind me of the real ones I have waiting for me at home when I return, so I can’t stay away for too long…

Raving about a Helmet

9 Apr

helmut

Who said helmets have to be boring? I am raving about my super cute, open face helmet in pink, with white racers stripes down the middle and stars on the sides. I know I’m going to use a lot this spring and summer while riding around town on my scooter. After owning a full-face helmet in silver and half helmet in white, I wanted something in between with a shield for eye protection, and something that still provided protection for street riding, and something more fun or colorful with a vintage look that would go well with my scooter. While on my hunt for this “in between” with all of “and and ands,” I discovered Ebay seller donydonkang (http://myworld.ebay.com/donydonkang?_trksid=p2047675.l2559) and found the ONE. The helmet was $41.25 + $14.43 for shipping. And while shipping took a few weeks, since it was coming from out of the country, it fit like a charm and it was less expensive for some of the vintage helmets I had considered used at thrift stores and other sites. This helmet reminds me of the style of Go Mifune’s helmet from Speed Racer. While I won’t be racing to a finish in this helmet, finally getting it made me feel like I won something. Maybe it’s the feeling of triumph of finding exactly what I was looking for.

Raving About My Baseball Jacket

3 Apr

giantsjacket

giantstrophies

Who’s excited about baseball season? After the Giants won the world series last year, my family and I were able to take photos with the World Championship trophies that the Giants won in both 2010 and 2012 at beautiful AT&T Park. I was excited to share in San Francisco’s celebration of the Giants’ big win, and equally excited to get some baseball gear at the Giants Dugout Store. While searching for gifts as well as myself, I learned that the men’s section had so much more than the women’s section… the guys seemed to have all of the good stuff. There were a ton of really cool letterman and baseball jackets that I wish they made for women or children, or even in smaller men’s sizes. Even while attempting to find a size small in the a men’s letter jackets, I was informed most of the styles weren’t even made in a size small. I wanted a Giants jacket, but I didn’t want one that was going to be giant on me. So, I decided I was going to make my own San Francisco Giants baseball jacket, one that was going to fit. There are so many trendy baseball style jackets for women, so it was easy for me to pick out a simple black jacket with white vegan leather sleeves and white buttons from H&M for a reasonable price. I carefully took off the letter “B” that was originally on the jacket and went on eBay to look for some San Francisco Giants patches. I found two vintage Giants patches that I thought would look great on my jacket, each under $10. The patches were super easy to iron on and I was left with a baseball jacket with a vintage feel, that represents my favorite team. Creating a team jacket turned out to be a lot less costly than purchasing one in-store, but a lot more form fitting and unique to personal preferences. Nothing should stop us from something that we want, especially if it’s easy enough to make ourselves. Now, we can be all excited about dressing for baseball season. Go Team Go!!