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general Mills, How to celebrate Dia de Los Muertos, home, celebrating, dia de los muertos, day of the dead

Disclosure: This post about Dia de Los Muertos is part of a sponsored campaign with General Mills. However, all opinions expressed are my own.

When someone we love dies, it can be crippling. The hardest part of living after losing someone is surviving without them. It doesn’t matter if it’s an elderly grandparent or a new baby that you never got to meet; it hurts in a primal way that makes you want to crawl inside of yourself and die. Having experienced this pain, I can truly say that I look forward to celebrating Dia de Los Muertos with my family.

I know it sounds macabre, especially if you don’t know what it’s all about. Firstly, it’s not Halloween. That’s the holiday where little kids dress up like monsters and get free candy from their neighbors. Actually, Halloween is one of my favorite holidays but it is nothing like Dia de Los Muertos.

As a Latina, fall season means Dia de Los Muertos is right around the corner. Last year, we watched the movie Book of Life, with our girls, to start the dialogue. It’s a big part of our Mexican heritage. They’d seen sugar skulls but didn’t fully understand what the celebration of Dia los Muertos was about.

Dia de los Muertos is a Mexican holiday that lasts for 2 days, November 1-November 2.

November 1st is Dia de los Inocentes, honoring children who have died. In preparation of the holiday, the graves are cleaned and those of the children are decorated with white orchids and baby’s breath. November 2nd is Dia de los Muertos, honoring adults, their graves are decorated with bright orange marigolds. On Dia de los Muertos we honor our dead with festivals and celebrations; it’s a marriage of indigenous Aztec ritual and Catholicism. I love this part.

The cemeteries in Mexico that are normally grey and melancholy, like any other cemetery, suddenly are bursting with color and life. You can’t believe the vibrant colors of beautiful sugar skulls and marigolds that fill the cemetery. My father celebrates this every year by going to Mexico and decorating the tombs of my Tio Narciso, my Abuela Bertha and my Abuelito Manuel. I know this is hard for him but it is also cathartic to celebrate their lives, rather than just be sad they are gone.

We believe that our dead loved ones would be insulted by mourning or sadness, so on Dia de los Muertos we celebrate the lives of the deceased with food, drink, parties and activities that the dead enjoyed while they were alive. For my Abuelito that would mean leche con pan (he was a simple man with simple tastes), for my Tio Narci that would definitely mean a Big Mac (he loved the United States, especially Big Macs and Ronald Regan) and for my Abuela it would mean as many beautiful marigolds as you could fit at her burial site.
I like that Dia de los Muertos recognizes death as a natural part of the human experience, a continuum with birth, childhood, and growing up. On Dia de los Muertos, the dead are also a part of the community, awakened from their eternal sleep to share celebrations with loved ones. It’s a very healthy way to look at death and takes away some of the fear of the unknown.

The most familiar symbol of Dia de los Muertos are the calacas and Calaveras (skeletons and skulls), which appear everywhere during the holiday: in candied sweets, on Pan de Muerto, on parade masks and even as dolls. Calacas and calaveras are almost always portrayed as enjoying life, often in fancy clothes and entertaining situations because it’s a celebration of life.

In addition to celebrations, the dead are honored on Dia de los Muertos with ofrendas—small, personal altars honoring one person. Ofrendas often have flowers, candles, food, drinks, photos, and personal mementos of the person being remembered. For example, if I were to make an altar for my Abuelito Manuel it would include lots of sweets and breads like Pan de Muerto.

Pan de Muerto (Spanish for “bread of the dead”) is a big part of the Dia de los Muertos traditional celebration. Pan de Muerto is sweetened soft bread shaped like a bun and decorated with bone-shaped pieces. The living eat the bread along with our departed loved one’s other favorite foods in their honor. No Dia de los Muertos celebration would be complete without Pan de Muerto.

Bonus: You can save $3.00 when you buy 3 Big G cereals and “Pan de Muerto” bread to celebrate Dia de los muertos.

 

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calavera, beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead makeup

Do you celebrate Day of the Dead, also known as, Dia de Los Muertos? Always wanted to dress up but had no idea where to start? Well, I’ve got the perfect and easy Day of the Dead make-up tutorial? Celebrating Day of the Dead will never be easier than with my Dia de los Muertos make-up tutorial.

We celebrate it as one of our culture’s most sacred traditions. One of our favorite things to do besides building our altar to honor our dead is I to dress up as La Calavera Catrina. All the makings of the perfect DIY Day of the Dead, Dia de Los Muertos Costume, was in my closet.

Halloween and Day of the Dead are right around the corner. Every year at this time we start trying to figure out what our Halloween costumes are going to be and what our costumes for the annual Zombie walk might be. Yes, we’re that family. As they say, a family that costumes together stays together.

This year I went Day of the Dead, Dia de Los Muertos, makeup for the zombie walk.

While the Big Guy and our girls are getting their zombie on, I prefer to dress up as la Calavera Catrina, more universally recognized as the Day of the Dead Doll.  Dia de lo Muertos royalty.

READ ALSO: How Disney’s Coco got Mexican Culture Right

I love the vibrant colors and the fact that I get to share my Latino culture with my daughters in such a big, beautiful way. I stick out like a flower among weeds with my make-up compared to all the zombies. Believe it or not, it’s pretty easy and it’s perfect for adults and kids.

The hard part is getting the make-up off but with a quick trip to WalMart, I can pick up a package of Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes and removal is easy peasy.

Here are step-by-step instructions on how to get your very own Day of the Dead look with this Dia De Los Muertos Make-Up Tutorial:

 beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead makeup

  1. First, begin by spreading an even layer of the Clown White make-up all over the entire face, except the eye sockets, with a sponge, and set with powder. It is important to set the color with the powder, because the black lines and color on top may get smudged unless you place a barrier in between.

beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead makeup

2.  Next, sculpt the perimeter of the eye sockets with black liquid eyeliner, it allows you be more precise with your lines. Then intensify the area by blending a matte black shadow in the same hue over the top of the entire eyelid and filling in.

beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead

3.  For detailing, I used a black liquid liner with a precise tip, and drew an upside-down heart on the nose, two rows of scalloping, connected by a circular motion, that surrounded the eyes and the two small circles on either side of my cheekbones. Mark out seven lines in a V-shape on your forehead. I made a jewel in the middle of mine. Connect the lines with curved shapes to create a spider weUse the same liquid liner to draw the two lines on your cheeks and draw a rose on your chin.

READ ALSO: How to Celebrate Dia de Los Muertos

4.  Use a color wheel of your choice to fill in the scalloping around your eyes, your jewel and any other designs on your face that need color. I set the color with more translucent powder, not too much, just enough to keep the color from running.

beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead

5.  Moving on to the lips, I wanted red lips so I used my red lipstick to draw in my lips. Then with the black liquid eyeliner, I drew in the intersecting lines across my lips. I let all lines dry well and then went over with liquid eyeliner again.

beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead

6.  With the liquid liner, add a few dotted details over the face, and a flower on your chin. Touch up individual areas with the color palette of your choice as needed, and after a few coats of mascara.

calavera, beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead

 

After showing off your gorgeous la Calavera Catrina Dia de Los Muertos makeup on day of the dead or Halloween, you can easily remove it using Neutrogena Makeup remover cleansing towelettes. It will effectively dissolve all traces of dirt, oil and, most importantly, makeup, even the waterproof mascara that you used to make your Calavera eyes pop. The cloths are ultra-soft and gentle with superior cleansing technology that is clinically proven to easily remove 99.3% of the most stubborn Halloween makeup. One step and you have clean skin with no residue.

calavera, beauty, day of the dead, make up tutorial, dia de los muertos, day of the dead, day of the dead make-up tutorial, dia de los muertos make-up tutorial

What are you dressing as this Halloween, Day of the Dead or Dia de los Muertos?

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Pillsbury, cinnamon rolls, family, breakfast

In our house, weekends equal sleeping in, relaxing and indulgent brunching. All week long, we are always in such a rush to get to all the places that we need to be that we seldom have time for anything more than toast or cold cereal. There is no time to linger and have long conversations over hot breakfasts and warm coffee. This alone makes us look forward to Sunday mornings.

 

As our daughters get older, life goes by faster. I know it sounds crazy because time never actually speeds up. But I swear it seems like just yesterday my girls were being born and that first year seemed like an eternity but now, they are 8 and 10 years old and the days, months and years are flying by. Sometimes, I just want to hit pause and Sunday brunch is our way of doing that.

 

We know that Sunday mornings are the one day a week that we can all sleep in until the girls jump in bed and wake us to butterfly kisses and tiny giggles. Then we come downstairs in our pajamas with no place to be and as a family, we make brunch.

Pillsbury, cinnamon rolls, family, breakfast

Usually the Big Guy or myself make the meal but the girls are always close underfoot to help set the table, clean the fruit, squeeze juice or at the very least chat us up about the weeks happenings at school, ballet and tumbling. This is when we really talk about everything and nothing. In order for us to parent effectively, we have to listen and engage in these fleeting moments.

 

Brunch usually includes music playing in the kitchen as we have impromptu morning dance parties while the smell of bacon and something scrumptious in the oven wafts through the air. This weekend it was ooey, gooey Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls. There is just something so comforting about biting into a warm, freshly baked pastry dripping with icing. It’s like a warm hug.

Pillsbury, cinnamon rolls, family, breakfast

Honestly, the only thing better than the smell of bacon and cinnamon rolls wafting through the house is the sound of little girls giggling and mommies and daddies sharing inside jokes, winks and stolen glances as they take it all in. They don’t call it Sunday Funday for nothing.

Pillsbury, cinnamon rolls, family, breakfast

In my book, it doesn’t get much better than sleep in your eyes, random hugs and cuddles and food that makes your soul dance. What’s your favorite Sunday morning family ritual?

Pillsbury, cinnamon rolls, family, breakfast

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Pillsbury through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls, all opinions are my own.

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road trip, Ford, #Exploremore, Canada, travel, platinum adventure tour

I am writing this on the plane as I head out for my epic road trip adventure with Ford to explore Kamloops to Calgary Canada. I am bound for an adventure through some of the most beautiful terrains in Canada. For the next four days, I will be driving the new 2016 Ford Explorer on one of six legs of Ford Explorer Platinum Adventure Tour.

What better way to introduce the 2016 Ford Explorer Platinum – a vehicle that combines the best of Limited and Sport editions – than with a road trip trek through western North America to end all road trips.

Ford has created a one-of-a-kind adventure for an all-in-one SUV that is ready to #ExploreMore. Over the past 25 years, Ford Explorer has reigned as the best-selling SUV in the United States, with more than 7 million sold. Yet even with those numbers, there are countless adventures still to be had. That’s where I come in!

Road trip time to #ExploreMore

Ford, #Exploremore, Canada, travel, platinum adventure tour, road trip

I have the honor and pleasure of joining the Ford Explorer team as they carve a path from Vancouver to Albuquerque, with a fleet of 2016 Explorer Platinum models. There are six distinct adventures planned that cover more than 2,000 miles along some of the greatest roads in North America.

My leg of this epic road trip journey is the Calgary Stampede. I chose this leg of the adventure because I am into pushing the limits in my travels and a huge fan of some of the most remote landscapes on the planet. When I travel some place, especially when by car, I want to be surrounded by beautiful majestic scenery and when I saw the itinerary for this adventure, I knew this was the road trip for me.

Today, I am journeying to Kamloops, British Columbia to join my fellow Ford explorers on this adventure. Tomorrow morning, my chance to really explore more begins as I depart Kamloops, cross the Canadian Rockies and eventually find my way back to Calgary.

Tomorrow, I will overnight in Revelstoke, near majestic Glacier National Park, home to more than 400 glaciers where 12 percent of the landscape is covered by perpetual ice and snow.

Over the next 4 days, there will be cerulean Lake Louise and lovely Moraine Lake which boasts views for which there are no words, but I will certainly try to find the words to share this once in a lifetime road trip.

Who knows, maybe I’ll take a gondola ride in Banff or a scenic drive around Lake Minnewanka. One thing is for certain; I will be sharing this epic adventure and all the information on how the new 2016 Ford Explorer handles. Follow along on my social media channels; Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Periscope. Just keep your eyes on the #ExploreMore hashtag.

I brought the good camera, so expect some stunning photos of some of the most beautiful, majestic landscapes in the world.

If you had the chance to explore anywhere in the world, what would be your ultimate road trip?

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OxiClean, laundry

As a mother with young children, I am no stranger to stains — spit up, baby food, grass stains, coffee, and knocked-over wine, but my least favorite is blood. Not just because that means someone got hurt but also because it’s hard to get it out. It means extra work and time that I don’t have, precious time that I could be spending with my girls.

Both of my daughters are ballerinas. You might not think that would be a dangerous sport but if you add to it a hot, dry studio and a child prone to nose bleeds, you have a recipe for near-constant disaster. White cotton leotards and bloodstains go together like oil and water.

A bloody nose during ballet used to mean trashing the leotards, letting go, and buying a new one, but as the girls get older and the leotards get more expensive, that’s becoming less and less of an option. What’s a mom supposed to do?

Well, the solution is finally here. OxiClean™ Laundry Detergent is an all-in-one solution for all of your laundering* needs. It helps save time since it can help remove stains in only one wash and it helps you save money that you would have wasted on replacing stained items.

OxiClean, laundry

Blood is a protein-based stain that OxiClean™ Laundry detergent can help remove. As with all stains, the faster you can treat the stain, the better the results will be. I rinse the bloodstained leotard immediately and let it fully soak in cold water. Then I use a little bit of OxiClean™ laundry detergent to pretreat the stain, wait 10-15 minutes and then wash with OxiClean™ laundry detergent. Then, before drying the leotard, I double check to make sure the stain is completely gone.

The OxiClean™power we’ve all come to know and love is now available in a liquid laundry detergent.

It’s powered by three color-safe OxiClean™ stain-fighters that penetrate fabrics to get them really clean while removing a wide range of tough stains. It’s available in a Fresh Scent or Perfume and Dye Free.

OxiClean, laundry

OxiClean™ laundry detergent helps remove those stains that all of us moms struggle with: grass, blood, fruit juices, fruits, wine, chocolate ice cream, ketchup, spaghetti sauce, and barbecue sauce. It helps me to be less uptight and just let my kids play and enjoy their childhood without worrying whether or not they are going to ruin their “good clothes” every time they wear them. Clothes are made to be worn, and life is made to be lived.

When I see my daughters dancing on stage, I don’t want to worry about whether or not their leotards are blood-stained. I know all the blood, sweat, tears, and years of dedication it took to get there. I want them to look clean, fresh, and ethereal when they dance, and OxiClean™ laundry detergent has the “wow factor” that allows my ballerinas to have the confidence to shine on stage, uncompromised by the limitations of bloody noses or anything else.

OxiClean, laundry

*Please follow manufacturer directions for your garments. For best results, pretreat stains with laundry detergent, wait 5-10 minutes and then wash.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by OxiClean™ through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about OxiClean™ n Laundry, all opinions are my own.

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tech, sleep, sleep number, sleep iq kids, bed, comfort

There is a new bed in town, the Sleep Number Sleep IQ Kids Bed and it’s not only intuitive, it keeps your kids in bed so they can get the rest all growing children need, allowing you to get the sleep you need. This amazing new smart bed knows when your kids are sleeping and when they’re awake. It even has a monster detection feature on the accompanying app, so kids feel safe from unwanted visitors. Now, only if it had an invisible force field to keep kids in bed, right?

This revolutionary new kid’s bed monitors sleep cycles and can help parents decipher if diet, stress or other activities throughout the day are impacting the quality of their day. I experienced the Sleep iQ Kids bed for the first time at CES in January and it was amazing.

A monster detector deciphers when under the bed is clear of even the scariest of boogie men. By hovering a smartphone or tablet in the direction of the bottom of the bed, a small monster icon will appear and determine if the coast is clear. This would have been amazing when Ella was having nightmares about chickens and lemurs under the bed!

tech, sleep, sleep number, sleep iq kids, bed, comfort

The bed, equipped with tiny hidden sensors, uses digital-signal capture within the mattress and processing techniques to pick up on motion and pressure. It tracks a child’s breathing and heart rate throughout the night too, and blends that data with other factors to determine a SleepIQ score in the morning; the higher the number (based from 1 to 100), the better the quality of sleep.

It’s also interactive. A sleep dashboard (available via an Android app or desktop) shows parents how well each child slept and alerts them in real-time if they need attention and are out of bed. The bed can also tilt if a child wants to read or has a stuffy nose from a head cold or allergies. Meanwhile, soft lights around the bed glow when kids get up or want to read and parents can turn them off remotely when it gets too late or little people nod off to slumber.

The bed is designed to grow with a child. Once they hit 10-years-old, they can manage their own SleepIQ score and see for themselves how exercise, sugar and TV time impact how they feel in the morning. This is intended to teach kids how to make better choices throughout the day and absolutely for newly crowned tween who thinks she knows everything.

tech, sleep, sleep number, sleep iq kids, bed, comfort

SleepIQ Kids, available in stores now, is priced at about $799.99 for the twin size mattress and will come in twin, full and queen size options.

In conjunction with the retail launch of the only smart bed for smart kids, the SleepIQ Kids bed, Sleep Number is rewarding kids who sleep well with six college scholarships! With all the talk about the ballooning cost of college, this contest will truly make some lucky kids’ (and their parents’) dreams come true.

Sleep Number, the sleep innovation leader whose mission is to improve lives by individualizing sleep experiences, is helping make kids’ college dreams come true. In celebration of its new SleepIQ Kids™ bed, which is available today in all Sleep Number® stores and online, the company is launching a contest to give away six college scholarships and six SleepIQ Kids beds.

Sleep Number understands the correlation between sleep and performance, which is why they are recognizing good sleepers who have big ambitions with the opportunity to win one of six college scholarships.

To help parents achieve their kids’ dreams, Sleep Number is hosting SleepIQ Kids Scholarship Contest at all Sleep Number stores, and will award six kids with a college scholarship and a SleepIQ Kids bed – total prize value is $134,000.

Families can visit a Sleep Number store to find their Sleep Number® setting and learn how a better night’s sleep helps kids succeed. Depending on their age, children will either draw a picture or write an essay about why sleep is important to them and how it helps them achieve their dreams.

After visiting the Sleep Number store, parents will receive a special code and Web address to submit their child’s entry online; a piece of artwork (for ages 4-9) or 200-word essay (for ages 10-14). Contest-entry details are available July 31. To find a Sleep Number store, visit SleepNumber.com.

The SleepIQ Kids bed is truly revolutionary. Not only does it offer kids comfort and adjustability with DualAir technology but it also tracks their sleep so parents can help their kids improve both at sleep and in life because the better you sleep, the better you perform. Plus the app includes a monster detector, which is really cool.

Disclosure: I attended CES with Sleep Number to see the bed in person but all opinions of the tech and coolness factor of the Sleep IQ Kids bed are all my own.

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Every wonder how to look younger longer? I’ve been spending a lot of time traveling to sunnier climates this summer, which is awesome because the weather in the Midwest has been lukewarm on most days. I like all four seasons and this rainy, snowy, lukewarm with rain season stuff is not working for me so I travel to hot weather and sunshine every chance I get. However, being that I am not 17-years-old anymore and just as I know that gravity is my mortal enemy, I also know that the sun can take it’s toll on my skin. You better believe there is a price to be paid for that sun kissed look and it’s high.

I have a friend who is a dermatologist and I once asked her over Sangria, friend to friend, “ What’s the best brand to use to fight wrinkles and the affects of aging?” I expected recommendations for Botox and microdermabrasion STAT but instead she came in close and whispered, “Olay.”

My reaction was,” WHAT? The stuff my mom uses?” Yep, the exact same. I was completely ready to save up and spend the big bucks because after all, I need to do all the preventative care I can because I decided a long time ago that I am too chicken for a facelift so I need to work now to keep it from falling in the first place.

I kept thinking maybe she was pulling my leg because could it really be that simple? I should have just listened to my mom from the beginning? No way, life could not be this easy. The fountain of youth could certainly not have been hiding all these years in plain sight.

Well as a wise woman, my mom, once told me, “It’s better to be safe than sorry!” So, I went to my local Walmart and bought a few beauty goodies. I figured if I was going to try it out, I might as well go where I could get the most bang for my buck.

I picked up a couple Olay® Ultra Moisture Beauty Bars, Olay Regenerist® Micro-Sculpting Cream™, Olay® Regenerist Luminous Tone Perfecting Cream and CoverGirl Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner pencil combo. I bought all the Olay products because I wanted to test her theory and I have to say, I think I’ve seen a difference over the past few weeks.

I mean, I don’t suddenly look 25 again but I think I look pretty spry and vibrant for a 42-year-old and without Botox, I’d say that’s a win. Not that I have anything against Botox, I just like having a face with expression. I’m a hand talker and if my face didn’t react, I’m pretty sure that I might frighten small children. So thank you to my friend for sharing her beauty secret and protecting the little people of my town.

What’s your favorite beauty tip or trick to look younger longer? Share it in the comments and one lucky reader will be randomly selected to win a $25 gift card to Wal-Mart to purchase your own Olay or Cover Girl favorites. Winner will be selected July 30, 2015.

 

 

 

Disclosure: I was provided Wal-Mart gift cards by P&G to purchase product but all opinions are my own. 

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Suavitel. Fragrance pearls, laundry, home, latina
Disclosure: This is a compensated post written as a part of my Suavitel ambassadorship agreement but my love for Suavitel and the nostalgia it brings are all my own.

Don’t you love it when you walk into a house or a room and it smells like freshly laundered linens? Or jumping into bed at night in clean sheets? It’s the best feeling in the world and it is my favorite smell. This is why the smell of Suavitel always reminds me of home. It reminds me of my childhood and folding laundry with my mom or jumping into warm, clean laundry before school on cold winter mornings.

For this reason, I love new fragrance pearls in-wash scent boosters. It not only smells amazing, it keeps that fresh smell lasting longer. You simply toss it into the washer before you throw your laundry in; add your detergent and then your fabric softener. It’s simple and the results are amazing with 5X longer lasting freshness, your clothes, your entire home, will smell awesome for weeks.

Suavitel. Fragrance pearls, laundry, home, latina

New Suavitel® Fragrance Pearls™ in-wash scent boosters with micro-encapsulated technology helps families extend that feeling of comfort and those exquisite aromas synonymous with a fresh load of laundry. It’s safe for all fabrics and washer settings. They’re the perfect addition to my laundry routine.

As a household staple for many Latinos, as I know it was in my house growing up, the Suavitel® brand has become synonymous with a feeling of comfort reminds me of home, more specifically, my mom. It’s been a long time since I’ve lived in a house with my mom. I miss her often but when my home is filled with the fresh scent of Suavitel, like my mother’s house, it makes me feel closer to her. It brings us closer even when distance keeps us apart.

Suavitel® Fragrance Pearls™ in-wash scent boosters are now available at retailers nationwide in 21.5 oz., 14.7 oz. and 6oz. bottles. Available in two irresistible scents, the Fabulous Field Flowers® and Soothing Lavender® variants of Suavitel® Fragrance Pearls™ in-wash-scent boosters deliver longer lasting freshness to your family’s laundry. I love them because they make that feeling of being home, even when I’m away from home, last longer.

Remember, you can add just a little or a lot. It all depends on what you want out of your fragrance booster. I prefer a lot because I want the smell of fresh laundered linens to greet me every time I enter my house.

If not Suavitel, what smell reminds you of home?

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pop of color, wayfair, home decor

My style is very minimalist but I crave a pop of color like the air I breathe. I need it. I like clean lines and bright colors but not a lot of “Stuff”. I am not a chochky kind of girl. Mess makes me insane and too much going on is just, well, “too much” for me. Don’t get me wrong I love bright bold colors and patterns but everything in moderation. My dining room is no exception.

We bought an old house, circa 1977, and we are completely renovating it. It’s been a labor of love and it’s going a little slower than I would prefer but hey, if living in a perpetual episode of This Old House gets me the home I’ve always wanted, then I’m all in.

My dining room was stark white. For a brief moment we painted the upper half merlot red but that seemed to date the room and it wasn’t the pop of color I wanted. I wanted fresh and clean. We decided it was just too dark and drab for us. So, we scrapped the whole thing and started from scratch.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

Currently, the top half of the dining room is beautiful, soft trellis wallpaper in robin’s egg blue. We are still in the process of adding Wainscoting below the chair rail but that didn’t stop me from feeling like I needed something to really make my dining room pop. After all, the décor is a big part of the dining experience. Well, that and the company!

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

I usually add pop with flowers because who can resist fresh flowers. My favorite flowers are peonies but mine are all in various shades of pink and I needed something brighter.

My daughters wanted something whimsical but I really crave simplicity so we compromised with LaMont Brights Placemats in Peacock. They come in 3 bright colors; lime, peacock and daffodil.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

And we properly set the table for four with my favorite white dishes. There is just something about a cheery table that makes the food taste better and the entire meal more digestible.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

For more great ideas of how to add that special pop of color to your home, check out the Wayfair Pop of Color Pinterest board.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

What is your favorite way to add a pop of color to your home?

*Disclaimer: A huge thank you to Wayfair for sponsoring this post but all opinions and love for these gorgeous Peacock blue placemats and the pop of color they bring with them are all mine.
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your truth is a lie, moms and daughters, comparing yourself to your mother

It started with 3 gray hairs. I got my first one when I was 30 and I joked to the Big Guy that he was to blame. With each child, another gray hair appeared. And then one day, it was like the three gray hairs got together and decided that it was their sworn duty to populate the right side of my head. At first, for many years, I plucked my three gray hairs. I took joy in knowing that many women younger than I had many more gray hairs. Not that I took joy in their misfortune but I had to enjoy the small victories, afterall, the baby weight wasn’t going anywhere.

But now, if I try to pluck all the gray hairs, I will have a definitely noticeable bald spot because when half your head is bald…people tend to notice. F*CK! I gave in and I dyed it. No biggie. I dyed it in my 20’s all the time, you know, to make it maroon or red or highlight the hell out of it. Back when I had money for such luxuries. Those were the days, back when I got massages, manicures, pedicures and was always tanned. For many years, I gave up the nails because long nails and babies don’t mix ( same reason I gave up the dangly earrings) it was just too dangerous to chance.

I went back to manicures and pedicures but I just don’t have the time in my schedule to go get my nails filled every two weeks and I refuse to not, so I spent 3 hours removing them myself Friday night. OUCH! I love pedicures but now, I’m obsessed with flesh eating disease and I just can’t enjoy myself. It’s like eating a Big Mac, too damn risky. Then tanning, well, of course, I’ll be the freckled Mexican to get melanoma and that just scares me too much. Spray tan it is. Wait, but then someone might have to see my in a bikini because I’m not crazy for the Oompa Loompa look of the spray tan booths. So, pasty and pale it is with a side of freckles please, govner.

But back to my gray hairs.

I suppose when I get the time this summer, I will go spend the $200 to have my hair cut and dyed. I can wait. And then it happened. As I was plucking my womanstache ( because even though I’m seemingly going bald from plucking my grays on my head, the hair on my upper lip is going stronger and darker than ever) I noticed my eye brows needed sorting out after the explosive cyst debacle. That’s when I saw it…a gray hair in my eyebrow. Wait! Not one but two!!! Sonofabitch, what am I Santa? Guess where it was? The right side of my face. The left side was the swollen explosive side last week.

To add insult to injury, just as my vision is now clear as a bell, I noticed the unthinkable…a white eyelash! What the? Is that even a thing? Thank God I’m hardwood down below because if I ever see a gray pubic hair, I may just die of old age on the spot!

My question to you is does the salon offer services for dying rogue gray hairs in your lash and brow area because I need that service. It took me 20 minutes to single out that one damn silver lash.

You know when I was a kid, I used to say that I was half White and Half Mexican ( because I am a half breed…insert Cher song here) and I would draw an imaginary line down the center of my body. My parents are 65 and my dad only has a couple gray hairs and barely a crows foot. My mom’s family gray in their 20’s. I think I’ve finally figured out which side is which…the right side is definitely my Caucasian side and the explosive left side, is definitely my Latina side.

Don’t even get me started on my achy bones, dark spots and skin tags. Getting old sucks. Thank goodness for wisdom and alcohol. I’m looking forward to the inevitable dementia that will set in and cause me to forget all of this.

What caused your first gray hairs?

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