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Random Things

Random Things

Kindness And Confidence Are Key Ingredients

The intention of my blog is to pass on worthwhile content to my readers, all in a positive light.

With this being said, I have to share an interaction I had last week. When life handed me lemons, a lightbulb went off: I remembered those times I lacked the confidence and knowledge I have now, and I realized there may be other women or young girls out there who could use this reassuring message.

Last week, a dear friend of mine called and invited me to join her and a few of her friends at lunch the following day. Small lunch. Happened to be one of the girl’s birthdays. She told me it was no biggie, and that they’d love to have me, so I agreed to attend.

That same afternoon, I ran into the birthday girl, who had learned I’d been invited to lunch. She greeted me with:

“ I know ‘so and so’ called you and invited you to join us.”
“I don’t want you to go.”
“You’re not included in this group.”
“This is our thing.”
“You can’t come.”

I replied to her in a casual, very nonchalant way. “Oh gosh. No worries at all. I totally get it that you want to keep the lunch small. All good.”

Ultimately, I didn’t mind skipping the lunch, but what stuck with me was the way this woman phrased the un-invitation. It felt like junior high school had come back just in time for Halloween, and her rude words struck a chord like none I remember in recent years.

I was debating whether to share this or to keep it close, but I decided to open up. I’m sharing this story for several reasons. If this sort of behavior is still going on at my age, no telling how bad this mean girl behavior is among school-aged girls. I have the wisdom and wherewithal to deal with this sort of situation, but I know, and I can promise you that our young girls need to be prepared with the tools to deal with this.

Certain people will try to beat you down and make you feel powerless.  Their intention is to make you feel bad and feel small. It should be no surprise to any of us that there has been an increase in social anxiety, depression and eating disorders among young girls.

I know that all of you have heard the phrase, “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade.” If only life were as easy as adding water and sugar to some freshly squeezed lemon juice. It’s much harder to look for ways to make something good come out of something bad than it is to get angry or depressed.

My friends always say that I try to find the good in people or the good in any given situation, but in this one, there is no part of this that resembles good. It was mean. It was rude, and this woman could have said this same thing in a hundred other different ways that would have been much nicer.

Never pretend that it’s lemonade when it’s lemon juice, but know that you can always turn lemon juice into lemonade. It just takes strength. You can emerge stronger, more confident, and with a kinder outlook.

Even so, no matter what happens, you’re never in it alone. My family, my friends, the pretty things, the yummy things, the random things and The Lemonade to Lace all make my world go ‘round. And when life gives you lemons…..well, you make yourself a Lemon Drop Martini.

Smooch!

xx Barbara

LEMON DROP MARTINI

INGREDIENTS:

1-½ oz vodka
½ oz orange liqueur
¾ oz lemon juice (fresh lemons are best)
1 tsp. superfine sugar

Optional: coarse sugar for rim

METHOD:

  1. Rim a martini glass with lemon juice and then sugar.
  2. Fill a cocktail shaker halfway with ice cubes.
  3. Pour in all the ingredients.
  4. Shake only until the sugar is dissolved.
  5. Strain the mixture into a sugar rimmed martini glass
  6. Garnish with a lemon slice or twist.

TO MAKE A LEMON TWIST:

  1. Make a slice through one side of the lemon peel and the pulp, all the way up to the rind on the other side.
  2. Use a knife to cut out all of the pulp and insides so that you have one long strip of lemon peel.
  3. Twist the strip of peel into one curly-q shape.
  4. Use the lemon twist to place on the rim of the martini glass.

Enjoy every sip of it!!

If you’re currently following me on Instagram, I want to send you a big thank you! Hearing from you makes my world go round. If not, please check out @lemonadetolace on your Instagram app and tap FOLLOW.

 

Random Things

Hello September! Time to……

The summer of ‘18 was full of highs and lows, and I’m absolutely feeling ready to hit the “refresh” button. Whether you had the summer of a lifetime or a so-so season, September is always a great time for new possibilities and fresh beginnings. For me, this September is the new January.

With school back in full swing and a new fashion season, I’m planning on taking a ‘back to school’ mentality starting September off with a clean slate. After all, we’re programmed at young ages to think about September as the beginning of a new year. When we were in school,  it was always about what needed to be accomplished by the end of the year. Now, it’s time to focus, set new goals and get prepped to take on new challenges. On my to-do list for September? Declutter, re-organize and refresh my pantry and closets.

Declutter
When I was getting my recipes together last week for the holidays, making lists of what I needed to replenish and seeing what I already had, I figured it would be the perfect time to check the expiration dates on my spices, seasonings, oils, and condiments and get rid of those that had already expired. Time intensive as it may be, this tasty project prepares me for all the holiday cooking that comes after fall rolls into town.

Elsewhere in the Eskowitz home, I’m changing things up in my closet. I plan on putting away the summer pieces that I won’t wear at all this fall. Of course, that’s easier said than done in LA. It tends to be kind of hard getting into that fall fashion mode living among palm trees and ocean breezes. I think that’s why I haven’t given up my white jeans yet, but I am definitely incorporating darker colors into my transitional wardrobe. Last night marked the return of black denim!

Speaking of seasonal closet clean-outs: Have you heard of the 80/20 rule? When it comes to clothing, we typically only wear 20 percent of the clothes we own 80 percent of the time. Your mission should be to get rid of the things you don’t use 80 percent of the time. A few decluttering tips:

  1. Put a large shopping bag in your closet. When you come across a piece of clothing that you’re ready to get rid of, you can toss that item in the bag to donate. You may want to put another bag in your closet for potential consignment items.
  2. Try the Oprah Winfrey closet hanger experiment. Hang all of your clothes with the hangers in the reverse direction facing the wrong way. After you wear an item, then return it to the closet with the hanger facing the correct direction. After 6 months, you’ll have a clear  idea of which items you don’t wear – and it’ll be easier to say, “Adios!”
  3. Buy Marie Kondo’s book The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up, or her latest read called Spark Joy. She is an organizing expert with a cult following and has sold millions of books for a reason.

Organize
I find it much easier to organize after the decluttering process has been done. We all have our different organizing methods, but whether you organize your spices alphabetically or organize your clothes by color and style, I’m certain that we’re all happier when our life is put together. Believe it or not,  Psychology Today and Web MD share that people are more likely to feel out of control when they surround themselves with more things than they can manage. In other words, mess causes stress. The best cure? Store like items together and close to where you will use them as this will reduce little stresses in your everyday life. Cleaning and organizing your closets, pantry, rooms or office is guaranteed to improve your life. No more wasting time looking for things you can’t find.

Refresh
After the decluttering and organizing process is complete, it’s a lot easier to see everything you actually have and assess what you need more of. It’s the perfect time to restock your pantry shelves with fresh items and treat yourself to a few pieces of clothing to freshen up your fall wardrobe. I don’t know if you feel the same way, but for me, there’s no better feeling than starting off September with a clean slate, just like those olden school days…

Some Things I’m looking forward to this September………

• Buying a darker shade of lipstick

• Putting on a cozy sweater

• Baked apples

• Wearing boots

• Pumpkin lattes

• Leather jackets

• Chilly nights

• Binge-watching a new TV series

Let me know what you’re looking forward to this September in the comments section below.

Smooch!

xx Barbara

 

Beauty, Fashion, Pretty Things, Random Things

My Summer Travel Essentials

It’s hard to believe that summer 2018 is almost over. I feel like I blinked and it was already August. Then again, that’s not so bad, because Labor Day is now around the corner!

If you’re anything like me, you use Labor Day to take a load off and go exploring. While packing well is always important for travel, it is especially make or break on holiday weekends. No one wants a quick getaway interrupted by inconvenience or a forgotten essential. Whether it’s a long weekend trip with your significant other, an excursion with your family or even a girls-only getaway, I like to stock up on essentials and gadgets that help make exploration more efficient. Preparation is key!

Below you’ll find some items that never leave my suitcase. They’ve come in handy for everything from beach vacays to walking tours and destination weddings. I know some of the essentials on my list will keep you organized and ensure that your travels are stress-free and more enjoyable. Never worry about a dead battery again!

PurseN Travel Beauty Organizer

https://www.amazon.com/PurseN Travel Beauty Organizer

 

Packable Visor

https://www.amazon.com/Packable Visor

 

Women 2 Way Ribbed Laced Tank Top

https://www.uniqlo.com/Women 2 Way Ribbed Laced Tank Top

 

Portable Charger Power Bank – External Battery Pack

https://www.amazon.com/Portable Charger Power Bank – External Battery Pack

 

Lightweight Packable Hooded Jacket

https://www.uniqlo.com/Lightweight Packable Hooded Jacket

 

PurseN Vacationer Jewelry Case

https://shoppursen.com/PurseN Vacationer Jewelry Cased

 

Janessa Leone’ Packable Straw Hat

https://janessaleone.com/Janessa Leone’ Packable Straw Hat

 

Packable Reusable Shopping Tote With Carrying Pouch

https://www.amazon.com/Packable Reusable Shopping Tote With Carrying Pouch

Ready for a bonus trip tip? Keep a travel size umbrella in your carry-on and store it, so you’ll already have it packed for your next trip. No more forgetting!

What are your travel essentials? Comment below letting me know what you just can’t jet without.

Smooch!

xx Barbara

 

Beauty, Fashion, Pretty Things, Random Things

SALUTE AMERICA WITH RED, WHITE AND BLUE FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY

I love summertime – and Fourth of July is my absolute favorite day all summer long. Whether you’re spending the weeks before America’s birthday planning a pool party, scoping out firework displays or packing a giant picnic, there’s no better time to stock up on patriotic goodies that showcase your affection for red, white and blue. Whether you plan on celebrating at a parade, at a picnic or at a backyard party, check out my list of patriotic clothing and home items that are sure to spark celebration in everyone’s hearts and homes.

Patriotic Jack Sandal

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Patriotic Jack Sandal

 

Red Or White Baublebar Drop Earrings

https://www.baublebar.com/Red Or White Baublebar Drop Earrings

 

Tie Sleeve Tee
https://shop.nordstrom.com/Tie Sleeve Tee

 

Stripe Baseball Tee
https://shop.nordstrom.com/Stripe Baseball Tee

 

CHAPPY USA Flag Swim Trunks
https://shop.nordstrom.com/CHAPPY USA Flag Swim Trunks

 

UNTUCKit Navy And Red Men’s Shirt
https://www.untuckit.com/UNTUCKit Navy And Red Men’s Shirt

 

Red, White & Blue 4-pack Sock Gift Set
https://shop.nordstrom.com/Red, White & Blue 4-Pack Sock Gift Set

 

Red Patriotic Stripe Baby, Toddler & Girl’s Dress
https://www.etsy.com/Red Patriotic Stripe Baby, Toddler & Girl’s Dress

 

Matching 4th Of July Baby Outfits
https://www.etsy.com/Matching 4th Of July Baby Outfits

 

Girls Americana Star Print Romper

https://www.target.com/Girls Americana Star Print Romper

 

2-Pack Patriotic Jersey Dresses

http://www.hm.com/2-Pack Patriotic Jersey Dresses

 

Girls Or Boys Havaiana Stars And Stripes Flip Flops

https://www.zappos.com/Girls Or Boys Havaiana Stars And Stripes Flip Flops

 

Boys 8” Stars And Stripes Swim Trunks

https://www.gap.com/Boys 8” Stars And Stripes Swim Trunks

 

Boys Rockin’ The Red, White & Blue Personalized T-Shirt

https://www.etsy.com/Boys Rockin’ The Red, White & Blue Personalized T-Shirt

 

Red And Blue Terry Puma Sneakers

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Red And Blue Terry Puma Sneakers

 

Plaid Throw Pillow

https://www.target.com/Plaid Throw Pillow

 

Forever Free Floral Melamine Dinner Plates

https://www.pier1.com/Forever Free Floral Melamine Dinner Plates

 

Stripe Up Throw Pillow

https://www.target.com/Stripe Up Throw Pillow

 

American Flag Table Runner

https://www.potterybarn.com/American Flag Table Runner

 

Red, White & Blue Pinwheels

https://www.potterybarnkids.com/Red, White & Blue Pinwheels

 

Tin Serving Caddy
https://shop.nordstrom.com/Tin Serving Caddy

 

Hopefully these stars and stripes leave you inspired to host a banner Fourth of July party, or simply spend a beautiful summer evening gazing at the sky with loved ones. Stay safe, and have a blast!

Smooch!

xx Barbara

 

Random Things, Yummy Things

YOUR HEALTHIEST SUMMER YET, FROM SUNSCREEN TO SMOOTHIES

I’ve decided to give my sunscreen ritual a bit of a shake-up now that summer is here. You and I both know that not all sunscreens are created equal. As with all products in the beauty world, it’s sometimes difficult to tell what’s truly made with clean, thoughtful ingredients. The truth is, there are a multitude of chemicals in today’s conventional sunscreens – even the labels give it away. This summer, I decided to make a change and focus on supporting companies that are putting health and integrity first. It’s a surprising amount of work identifying which products are truly a cut above the rest, but it is worth it!

To be honest, I was shocked to find that some conventional sunscreens absorb the sun’s rays rather than block them. Mineral sunscreens that use zinc or titanium dioxide, however, sit on top of the skin and physically block UVA and UVB rays. Here’s an important thing to take note of: Mineral sunscreens will ONLY list zinc and/or titanium dioxide as ingredients. If you see a sunscreen that says “mineral-based” this typically means that zinc and/or titanium dioxide have been mixed with other chemical sunscreens.

Switching over to clean products takes a lot of research, so I’ll be switching over in baby steps. This summer, I’m planning on trying a couple of different sunscreens to see how I like them and to test if they actually do protect me from the sun’s damaging rays. Trying to find a “clean” non-toxic sunscreen is no different than eating healthy organic fruits and vegetables. I know that it’s not only important what you put IN your body; It’s also important what you put ON your body.

Here are a few of the non-toxic sunscreens that I’m planning to try out:

Suntegrity
Body Sunscreen SPF 30

https://www.thedetoxmarket.com/Suntegrity Body Sunscreen SPF 30

Babo Botanicals
SPF 30 Clear Zinc Fragrance Free Sunscreen Lotion

https://www.babobotanicals.com/Babo BotanicalsSPF 30 Clear Zinc Fragrance Free Sunscreen Lotion

Coola
Eco-Lux Body SPF 30 Organic Sunscreen Spray

https://coolasuncare.com/Coola Eco-Lux Body SPF 30 Organic Sunscreen Spray

If you decide to try a different “clean” sunscreen other than those listed above, please take note:

*Broad Spectrum is important
*You want mineral, not chemical
*Be wary of the term “mineral-based”
* Make sure all active ingredients are non-toxic. No parabens!

If you choose to switch over and start using a non-toxic sunscreen, let me know what you think of the product and how it works for you! Stay safe and have fun in the sun this summer!

————————————————————————

SMOOTHIES

Summer is finally here. It’s time to chill out – while you lay out with your new sunscreen, why not enjoy a refreshing smoothie? Below are a couple of smoothie recipes from Beaming, a healthy superfoods store right down the street in Santa Monica. (www.livebeaming.com)

Lisa’s Daily Lean + Green
¾ cup almond milk
¾ cup coconut water
2-3 Tbsp organic plant-based protein powder
¼ avocado
¼ cup frozen banana
1 large handful of spinach
1 tsp maca
1 Tbsp hemp seeds for garnish

Method:
Blend all ingredients on high speed in blender for about 30 seconds. Sprinkle 1 Tbsp of hemp seeds on top.

Beaming Basic Smoothie
1-½ cup sprouted almond milk
½ frozen banana
1 medjol date (Prefer low-glycemic? Substitute the date and banana for ¼ avocado and a low-glycemic superfood sweetener such as yacon, mesquite, honey, coconut sugar or agave)
2 Tbsp Beaming Organic Superfood Plant Based Protein Powder
Your favorite fruits (banana, mango, strawberry, blueberry, etc) and greens (spinach is great)
¼ cup ice

Method:
Blend all ingredients in mixture until smooth.

I got the smoothie recipe below from Pamela Salzman. Check out her cookbook called
Kitchen Matters. I went to several of her cooking classes here in LA and learned so much about getting back to the basics and cooking “real” food. 

Strawberry-Cucumber Smoothie
1 cup cold coconut water or unsweetened almond milk
1-½ cups frozen strawberries (freeze your own organic strawberries)
1 Persian cucumber, unpeeled, cut into large chunks or ½ an English (hothouse)
Cucumber, seeds removed, cut into large chunks
1 Tbsp raw honey or sweetener of choice (optional)
1 tsp minced, peeled ginger (optional)

Method:
Combine all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Add more almond milk as necessary, depending on your desired consistency.

Note:
You can substitute frozen blueberries or blackberries and add ground flax meal, hemp seeds or protein powder.

Enjoy these cool treats – and their amazing health benefits!

Smooch!

xx Barbara

Follow me on Instagram @lemonadetolace

 

Beauty, Fashion, Pretty Things, Random Things

Obsessed With White Sneakers

From high fashion to high street, the white sneaker is popping up everywhere. When it comes to versatility, white sneakers are the “be all, end all” and those who are in-the-know have completely embraced the style, comfort and practicality of this fashion trend. They’ve won me over, too: White sneakers have become one of my all-time favorite wardrobe staples. They have had such a style comeback over the past year, and it’s now acceptable to wear them pretty much everywhere and with every type of clothing. From maxi dresses to mini dresses and from skirts to culottes, they literally work with everything.

As a matter of fact, I was talking tennis shoe lingo with a darling sales associate who was helping me at a boutique in Santa Monica. She’s getting married this summer and was telling me all about her Carolina Herrera wedding dress. She even showed me a photo of her at her dress fitting. Guess what kind of shoes she bought to wear under her gown to dance in? A pair of white rhinestone Golden Goose sneakers! OMG! She won me over with that comment. The right white pair of sneakers can truly be the perfect fit for any occasion, and even a breath of fresh air.

This season we have many stylish options, from minimalist styles to playful embellishment. I’ve seen everything from metallic details, pearls, embroidery and appliques adorning white sneakers. I’ve also seen many pairs of solid white sneakers with just a simple, subtle logo. There are plenty of price points and styles available right now, from budget-friendly to those that break-the-bank. One thing I know for sure is that if you haven’t purchased an “on trend” pair of white sneaks yet, you should take the plunge. I can guarantee you’ll be glad you did!

 

Adidas Originals – Superstar Metallic-Trimmed Leather Sneakers

https://www.net-a-porter.com/Adidas Originals – Superstar Metallic-Trimmed Leather Snea

 

MOA Master Of Arts – Bow Embellished Sneakers

https://www.farfetch.com/MOA Master Of Arts – Bow Embellished Sneakers

 

Golden Goose – White And Gold Glitter Superstar

https://www.ssense.com/Golden Goose – White And Gold Glitter Superstar

 

Veja – V-10 Nautico Sneakers

https://www.farfetch.com/Veja – V-10 Nautico Sneakers

 

GUCCI – New Ace Floral – Embroidered Leather Low-Top Sneakers

https://www.saksfifthavenue.com/GUCCI – New Ace Floral – Embroidered Leather Low-Top Sneakers

 

PUMA – Basket Heart Oceanaire Ribbon-Laced Sneaker

https://www.neimanmarcus.com/PUMA – Basket Heart Oceanaire Ribbon-Laced Sneaker

 

Acne Studios – Adriana Turnup White

https://www.acnestudios.com/Acne Studios – Adriana Turnup White

 

Zara – Die-Cut Sneakers

https://www.zara.com/Zara – Die-Cut Sneakers

 

Ash – Dazed Sneaker

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Ash – Dazed Sneaker

 

Valentino – Two Tone Metallic Leather Sneaker

https://www.net-a-porter.com/Valentino – Two Tone Metallic Leather Sneaker

 

MOA – Elasticated Band Lace-Up Sneakers

https://www.farfetch.com/MOA – Elasticated Band Lace-Up Sneakers


Adidas – Stan Smith Sneaker

https://www.adidas.com/Adidas – Stan Smith Sneaker

 

Paul Green – Serena Floral Embellished Sneaker

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Paul Green – Serena Floral Embellished Sneaker

 

Zara Graffiti Sneakers

https://www.zara.com/Zara Graffiti Sneakers

 

GUCCI – New Ace Sneaker

https://shop.nordstrom.com/GUCCI – New Ace Sneaker


Smooch!

xx Barbara

 

Beauty, Fashion, Pretty Things, Random Things

MOTHER’S DAY AND GRADUATION GIFTS


Spring has sprung. May is around the corner. The weather is getting a little warmer and flowers are blooming everywhere which means……Mother’s Day and Graduation will be here before you know it. My Lemonade To Lace “Top Ten” gift guide will make your search for the perfect “Mom” and “Grad” gifts an absolute breeze, so here goes……

FOR THE MOMS:

CUSTOM IPHONE CASES
For the Mom Who Has A Gift Of Gab

https://www.shutterfly.com/custom iphone cases

 

LUMEE DUO
For the Mom Who Is The Queen Of Selfies, a case with built-in LED lights on its front & back.

https://lumee.com/lumee duo LED loghts iphone-x-case

 

PERSONALIZED CANVAS YOGA BAG
For The Yogi Mom

https://www.markandgraham.com/personalized canvas yoga bag

 

HEART SNAPSHOT PHOTO ART
For The Photo-loving Mom

https://www.minted.com/heart snapshot photo art

 

PERSONALIZED ZIP CARD CASE
For The Mom On The Go

https://www.markandgraham.com/personalized zip card case

 

BABY KEEPSAKE LIBRARY
For The New Mom

https://www.uncommongoods.com/baby keepsake library

 

S’WELL WATER BOTTLE
For The Mom Who Sips On The Go

https://www.saksfifthavenue.com/swell water bottles

 

CATERPILLAR BUD VASE
For The Mom With Flower Power

https://www.uncommongoods.com/caterpillar bud vase

 

ONLY ROSES
For The Everything’s Coming Up Roses Mom

https://www.only-roses.com/infiniteroses

 

#MOMLIFE TEE
For The Hashtag Mom Who Is Loving Life

https://www.etsy.com/#momlife tee

 

FOR THE GRADS:

IPAD PRO CUSTOM CASE
For The Grad And His/Her Ipad

https://www.mycustomcase.com/ipad pro custom case

 

CUSTOM T-SHIRT MEMORY BLANKET
For The High School Grad And Their Tees

https://www.etsy.com/custom-t-shirt memory blanket

 

110% TIRED PILLOWCASE
For The Grad Who Needs Sleep

https://www.francescas.com/110% tired pillowcase

 

JOY MANGANO MY LITTLE STEAMER GO MINI HAND STEAMER
For The Grad Who Likes “Wrinkle-Free”

https://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/joy mangano my little steamer go mini hand steamer

 

APPLE AIRPODS
For The Grad Who Loves Convenience

https://www.apple.com/airpods

 

LEATHER CHARGER ROLL-UP
For The Grad Who’s A Tech-Setter

https://www.markandgraham.com/leather charger roll-up

 

OVERSIZED LAUNDRY BAG
For The Grad Who Waits Way To Long To Do Their Laundry

https://www.thegrommet.com/oversized laundry bag

 

WEEKENDER PERSONALIZED DUFFEL AND TRAVEL BAG
For The Guy Grad And His Travels

https://www.personalizationmall.com/weekender personalized duffel and travel bag

 

VERA BRADLEY MONOGRAMMED LARGE TRAVEL DUFFEL
For The Gal Grad And Her Travels

https://www.verabradley.com/vera radley monogrammed large travel duffel

 

I JUST GRADUATED… NOW WHAT? BY KATHERINE SCHWARZENEGGER
For The Grad Who Wants Some Answers

https://www.urbanoutfitters.com/I just graduated…now what?

 

I hope this Lemonade To Lace curated list has given you some great ideas and inspiration for Graduation and Mother’s Day gifts. Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Smooch!

xx Barbara

 

Follow me on Instagram @lemonadetolace.

 

Random Things, Yummy Things

2018 Food Trends

2018 is proving to be an adventurous year in the food industry. I’ve been sipping and snacking my way through LA, so I thought I’d compile a list of what’s currently trending! There’s so much going on, from a new water revolution to now-functional mushrooms. Not to mention, souping is the new juicing, and avocado isn’t toast yet – which is a huge “hooray” for me since I’m a major avocado lover. Here are ten food trends to try in 2018:

The Trend: Plant-Based foods Fresh produce is the star of 2018, especially with the popularity of plant-based diets and veggie-centric main courses and side dishes. Bright and bold natural colors are “rocking” in the food world. Think about what the produce section of your grocery store looks like: Colorful, to say the least. Using the entire vegetable, or root-to-stem eating, is the new way to go, because it reduces the food waste that is so common at home and in restaurants. If your goal is to cut back on meat, plant proteins like lentils, black beans and quinoa will take the place of meat proteins in everyday cooking. #MeatlessMonday, anyone?

The Trend: Coffee Elixir If coffee is the first thing that comes to your mind when you wake up, then we have something in common. Now, it’s time to up the ante: Superfoods are not just for your morning smoothies anymore. Revamp your morning cup of coffee by adding protein, maca, mushroom powders and other superfoods that are nutritious and delicious. Imagine actually getting health benefits out of a cup of coffee rather than just a caffeine fix. It’s a win-win!

The Trend: Air Frying Also all the rage? Air fryers. Unlike a deep-fryer that uses vegetable or canola oil, air fryers circulate hot air around the food and perfectly crisp the food in a much healthier way. It may sound too good to be true, but there’s absolutely no downside. From french fries to chicken wings, recipes for air frying are popping up more and more.

The Trend: Fizzy H2O Say cheers to the other kind of bubbly. Drinking a can of flavored fizzy water is more popular than ever and has captured the hearts of millenials and moms alike. Some people I know are so hooked on La Croix flavored sparkling water that when they go to Whole Foods, they buy every case of the lime flavor that they can get their hands on. The bubbly waters make you feel like you’re drinking a soda, minus the added sugar and additives. If you love LaCroix, you’ll also enjoy Spindrift and Perrier.

The Trend: Souping Over Juicing Move over, green juice. Drinkable soups are the hot new thing: Hearty, tasty, filling and convenient. Pureed soups are packed with vitamins and nutrients, making them a delicious swap for juices. Like juicing, souping gives your digestive system a rest, but it’s unlikely to lead to the energy crashes, headaches and weight gain rebound that sugary juices have been known for. Using bone broth as the base to your soup will give you many anti-inflammatory benefits as well.

The Trend: Ghee is the Better Butter Substitute If you’re not familiar with Ghee yet, be prepared to see it everywhere this year. Ghee is clarified butter, which is produced by heating butter and removing the milk solids and water. Ghee is a healthy fat and has been used for years in Ayurvedic healing practices. Ghee has a rich, nutty flavor and can be used in place of just about any other cooking oil or fat in recipes. It is the perfect substitute for butter if you have a milk allergy or are lactose intolerant.

The Trend: Donuts With Exotic Fillings 2018 is the year of creative fillings for donuts, not only in your neighborhood donut shop, but also in the fine dining world. Everyone still wants to splurge every now and then and when they do, donuts with fun and interesting flavor combinations are hard to beat. Fillings such as pineapple with basil cream, meyer lemon curd, mojito and mint leaf, lavender and berry with goat cheese are all the rage. Definitely different from your classic glazed donut!

The Trend: Functional Mushrooms Who would have thought that mushrooms and fungi would be the next big thing? Mushroom fans claim that they can cure everything from high blood sugar to arthritis. Medicinal mushroom powders are popping up in bottled drinks and can be added to coffees, smoothies and teas. When I went to check out the Four Sigmatic mushroom shop in Venice, CA, I got a brief education on mushrooms’ many health benefits. There’s even an e-learning course called Mushroom Academy where you can learn all about the benefits of medicinal mushrooms. The best part is, the course is absolutely free.

The Trend: Floral Flavors and Edible Flowers In addition to being used as beautiful decorative touches, more and more edible flowers are being sourced for their specific flavors. Think lavender lattes and rose flavored everything, from drinks to desserts. Flowers like lavender, violet and hibiscus are moving from fancy restaurant plates to grocery store shelves, so keep an eye out the next time you’re baking or hosting a tea.

The Trend: Overall Well-Being Through Food The saying “you are what you eat” has never been more true. The emphasis of body and mind connections are influencing new food and beverage introductions in 2018. Healing the “gut” and curing what ails you through ayurvedic cooking has become increasingly popular. If you’re interested in learning more, www.countertopfoods.com is all about cooking with spices medicinally. Their products “help make the food you already love into food that your body will love you for.” More on this in another post.  

 

 

In 2018 and in the trending food world, you’ll also notice a few other things. Dumplings still dominate. Meatballs are on a roll and tacos are here to stay. Only this time, look for breakfast tacos, dessert tacos and even sushi tacos. Yum! This year’s pizza trend will be square shaped pizzas. Grocery delivery (www.milkandeggs.com) and meal kit delivery services like (www.blueapron.com) will only get bigger. Of course, a few things will stay the same: I can promise you that mocktails will never replace cocktails.

If you’d like to try selecting your organic groceries online, I recommend milkandeggs.com!
Use code LEMONADETOLACE for 20% off your order.

Smooch!

xx Barbara

 

About, Beauty, Fashion, Pretty Things, Random Things

Back To The Basics

Let’s get one thing straight: There’s nothing wrong with being basic! I’m the first to admit that I love statement pieces and trendy items, but in reality, I know that simple basics are the building blocks of any stylish, versatile wardrobe. By simple basics, I mean the perfect jeans and crisp white tee that make every wardrobe complete. Other basics in my closet include neutral camisoles, black slacks, sweaters and black leggings. They are the easy, wearable pieces in my closet that I know will be in style forever.

These pieces tend to be my first go-to items when trying to put an ensemble together – they look sleek on their own, but you’ll thank yourself for stocking up when you go to style Miu Miu’s latest ballet flats or a bold statement coat. These basics make wearing statement pieces a breeze!

Over the years, I’ve noticed that the basic pieces I wear most are those that are transitional and easy to pack for travel. Layering pieces are essential, so I like to keep certain colors and fabrics in mind when shopping for my basics. It’s common to have days here in LA where the temperature fluctuates 20 degrees, so I rarely leave home without a sweater, a wrap or a jacket.

Keep reading to explore some tried-and-true basics that are my wardrobe staples, along with a list of stores where you’ll be able to score these ‘must have’ pieces for your own capsule wardrobe.

JEANS
The trend du juor in the denim world is, well, not exactly a trend – look for perfect jeans that fit well, are cut cleanly and most of all, flatter your body type. You will LIVE in them. Skinny jeans are still in the forefront and among the most popular because of their flattering fit. Slim, polished and classic, a dark wash denim is perfect for day or night. They are practical and versatile and will be your go-to style for every season. With the addition of raw hems, frayed hems and step cut hems, denim fatigue is currently a non-issue. Big yay! For the past ‘I don’t know how many years’, it’s been the same ol’ same ol’ in the denim world. Every pair looked exactly the same and there was no reason to buy anything new. That was until now, and I have found it fun getting to purchase these interesting new styles and add them to my denim collection. I rarely get rid of jeans, because unique styles tend to come back around!

WHITE TEE
The great thing about a white tee is that it won’t go in-and-out-of-style in the blink of an eye. It’s about as basic as you can get when it comes to clothing. It is that one item that you can mix and match, layer and travel with and enjoy wearing season after season. The key here is whether to splurge or spend. I’ve had bad luck over the years with a few well-known brands who have brick and mortar stores in my neighborhood and in shopping malls across America. Their tees come in all different styles (crew neck, v-neck and scoop neck) but friends, the quality is just not there and they’re not exactly cheap. Several years ago while visiting New York City, I ventured into a Uniqlo store on 5th Ave. It’s a flagship store and happened to be packed with people and loaded with merchandise. Everything they offer is basic, but well made. There is nothing at all exciting about their merchandise other than the quality, easy laundering and good prices. But it turns out, that’s actually pretty exciting! I have so many white tees from them (and black tees too). If you need to update the white tees in your wardrobe, then Uniqlo items are a win-win deal.

*By the way, I love their ribbed cotton camisoles with lace straps. I’m always layering these basics with jackets or sweaters. In addition, I think their airism hoodies are the best and so easy to pack for travel.

The other brand that I’ve seen splashed across the internet is Everlane. I’ve never tried their white tees, but they’ve gotten rave reviews on their high quality, affordable and sustainable pieces. This company prides itself on simple, basic pieces. Their items are classic, not trendy, and can only be ordered online. Plus, they’re worn and loved by Meghan Markle – what more testimony does one need?

Petit-bateau is another t-shirt brand that uses high quality cotton, launders well and can be ordered online if you can’t find it in department stores.

CAMISOLES
As I mentioned above, Uniqlo is one of the best spots to find any key basics at below market prices. They’re just the best at what they do! They are currently sold out of my favorite lace trimmed cotton ribbed camisole and I hate to even tell you how cheap I got it for. I bought multiples and have so many of them that I wear them all the time. I found the exact same one online at Nordstrombut it’s just not as good of a deal. This style looks great paired with any jacket and can be worn layered all year long. I happen to love the lace detail that adds just a little bit of oomph to what would ordinarily be just another basic piece. Another great cami / tank to take a look at is this one by J.Crew 

I think it’s a great look at a reasonable price, and the neutral colors are easy to wear with just about anything.

BLACK PANTS
Every woman and every closet needs at least one pair of black pants. They are timeless, and a high quality pair can last for years. I prefer to shop at Theory  when I’m in the market for a new pair. I know I can go into their store and come out with what I need. Their quality is good. Their price point is within reach and they have a great selection of different styles to choose from including skinny, flair, cropped and relaxed fits. Their different fits will take you from work to weekend and from day to night, which make this brand the perfect one-stop-shop for professionals of any sort.

SWEATERS
For me, sweaters are the trickiest and most challenging item in my wardrobe. Why, you might ask? I’m allergic to wool, which poses a huge problem when shopping for sweaters. Most sweaters are made out of merino wool or cashmere and both of them irritate my skin. Yes, even cashmere gives me an itch! So, If I need to buy a sweater as a layering piece, I have to resort to cotton, which is generally more difficult to find. I’ve had the best luck buying cotton sweaters at both Uniqlo and Zara.

The price point at both stores is incredibly reasonable and the quality is good. A solid color sweater will never be an exciting purchase, but I was able to find a Zara pullover that has a cute side slit so you can achieve a high-low effect. This detailing makes such a basic piece a bit more interesting. It’s lightweight, comes in many basic colors and is perfect for our weather here in LA. I actually just packed this sweater in two different colors for my trip to Houston last week. One was black (of course it was!) and the other was an oatmeal color. The great thing about this particular sweater is that because of the fabric, it hardly takes up any room in a suitcase.

BLACK LEGGINGS
Black leggings are a wardrobe staple for me – you can find me in a pair several days a week. In fact, I think they’re a staple for all Angelenos! I not only wear them when I’m working out, but also when I’m running around doing errands or at home working at my computer. With our casual culture and athleisure so popular among women of all ages, the basic black legging is now considered one of those necessary items for any wardrobe. Lululemon still has the most basic, high quality and no longer see-through black leggings. I am always guaranteed that their “wunder under” style will give me the support and hold me in where I need it to. Lululemon leggings are not cheap, but they are durable, launder well and last. In addition, they are flattering to the figure and in my opinion, worth the investment. There are many other brands out there with fun black legging styles like Alo, Sweaty Betty, Rese and Ultracor, but when it comes to a basic black legging with no design, stick with Lululemon.

Other brands you should check out when you need to add to or update the basics in your wardrobe are Aritzia (now in Westfield Century City Mall in LA), Topshop, Vince and IRO.

A funny quote I saw the other day goes like this: “I could give up shopping, but I’m not a quitter.”

So when the going gets tough, just remember, the tough go shopping!

Smooch!

xx Barbara

 

Beauty, Fashion, Pretty Things, Random Things

Valentine’s Gifts for Couples of Every Age

Valentine’s Day is all about LOVE, which is why I think this holiday is so incredibly special. In a previous post, I shared on my blog that I collect heart shaped rocks – so  it should be no surprise that a holiday with a heart theme would be one of my favorites.

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, gift giving season is still in session. LOVE is in the air and It’s time to start brainstorming what you should do, what you should give and how you’re going to celebrate with that special someone.

Whether you’re trying to show your special guy or gal how much you love them, or if you’re single and just want to spoil yourself, I’ve rounded up some gift ideas for you to check out in all different price ranges for everyone on your growing LOVE list in 2018.

 

GUYS: 20 to 30-year-olds       

Game of Phones

https://www.uncommongoods.com/Game of Phones

 

BKR 16-Ounce Glass Water Bottle

https://shop.nordstrom.com/BKR 16-Ounce Glass Water Bottle

 

James Perse Classic Zip Front Hoodie

https://shop.nordstrom.com/James Perse Classic Zip Front Hoodie

 

GALS: 20 to 30-year-olds

I Love You More Accent Pillow

https://shop.nordstrom.com/I Love You More Accent Pillow

 

Bath and Shower Goodies From Lush 

https://www.lushusa.com/Bath and Shower Goodies From Lush

 

Ray-Ban Mirrored Polarized Aviator Sunglasses, pink pattern

https://www.neimanmarcus.com/Ray-Ban Mirrored Polarized Aviator Sunglasses, pink pattern

 

GUYS: 30 to 40-year-olds  

Date Night Bucket List

https://www.uncommongoods.com/Date Night Bucket List

 

Barefoot Dreams Cozy Throw

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Barefoot Dreams Cozy Throw

 

Apple AirPods

https://www.apple.com/Apple AirPods

 

GALS: 30 to 40-year-olds

Nars Velvet Lip Glide Duo

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Nars Velvet Lip Glide Duo

 

Not Today Cupid Tee

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Not Today Cupid Tee

 

Mansur Gavriel Mini Patent Leather Bucket Bag

https://www.net-a-porter.com/Mansur Gavriel Mini Patent Leather Bucket Bag

 

GUYS: 40 to 50-year-olds  

Easy Tiger Hot Stuff Porcelain Mug

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Easy Tiger Hot Stuff Porcelain Mug

 

Jo Malone Wood Sage & Sea Salt Candle

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Jo Malone Wood Sage & Sea Salt Candle

 

Bose QuietComfort Wireless Headphones

https://www.bose.com/Bose QuietComfort Wireless Headphones

 

GALS: 40 to 50-year-olds

Agate Marble Luxe Iphone X Case

https://www.shopbop.com/Agate Marble Luxe Iphone X Case

 

Slip For Beauty Sleep – Pink Collection

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Slip For Beauty Sleep – Pink Collection

 

Clare V Shearling Foldover Clutch

https://www.shopbop.com/Clare V Shearling Foldover Clutch

 

GUYS: 50 to 60-year-olds

eTip Apex ClimateBlock Gloves

https://shop.nordstrom.com/eTip Apex ClimateBlock Gloves

 

Mens Paul Smith Mini-Stripe Cufflinks

https://www.paulsmith.com/Mens Paul Smith Mini-Stripe Cufflinks

 

Harry’s Winston Rose Gold Shave Set

https://www.barneys.com/Harry’s Winston Rose Gold Shave Set

 

GALS: 50 to 60-year-olds

Hey Pretty Lady Ceramic Mug

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Hey Pretty Lady Ceramic Mug

 

Cuddle Up Faux Fur Throw Blanket

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Cuddle Up Faux Fur Throw Blanket

 

Gucci Marmont Red Card Case

https://www.gucci.com/Gucci Marmont Red Card Case

 

GUYS: 60 to 70-year-olds

Nike Dri-Fit Golf Polo Shirt

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Nike Dri-Fit Golf Polo Shirt

 

Build Your Box Of Socks

https://www.nicelaundry.com/Build Your Box Of Socks

 

Ugg Ascot Suede Slippers

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Ugg Ascot Suede Slippers

 

GALS: 60 to 70-year-olds

Caroline Travel Jewelry Case

https://shop.nordstrom.com/Caroline Travel Jewelry Case

 

Baccarat “Lucky” Butterfly, Peony Pink

https://www.neimanmarcus.com/Baccarat “Lucky” Butterfly, Peony Pink

 

Gucci Petite Marmont Leather Card Case

https://www.neimanmarcus.com/Gucci Petite Marmont Leather Card Case

From my heart to yours, I hope you have a special LOVE-filled Valentine’s Day. 

Smooch!

xx Barbara