My Day Through Photographs

Hey there,

It has been a very long time since the last time I posted. I wanted to focus on work as well as other obligations. Now with all the daily stresses of life out of the way, I can focus on something more fun. 

I haven't been up to much except work so it was nice to step out and just enjoy the day and sights. I went for a walk through the Chinatown area and as usual it was full of energy with different people enjoying themselves. There were people singing and playing instruments by the metro stops. Others were out with their cameras recording and taking pictures.

My friends and I walked over to Hill Country Barbecue where we had a delicious feast. I had some collard greens, macaroni and cheese (so good!), cornbread, and a couple slabs of boneless prime rib. I wasn't to crazy about the meat but everything else was great.

Hill Country Barbecue Market grub.

Hill Country Barbecue Market grub.

As it was such a hot day, I wanted to checkout my rooftop pool. As you can see, I had a pretty relaxing afternoon at the pool. However, it did start to get a little too cool for my liking so I only dipped my legs in for a little while. It was really nice to see everyone finally getting to enjoy the beautiful weather.

How did you spend your day?

 

J

Being silly with Snapchat filters

Being silly with Snapchat filters

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Doesn't water look so cool when it's being hit by the sun?

Doesn't water look so cool when it's being hit by the sun?

Bikini Season is Here and it's Time to Find the Perfect Suit

 

With the summer season right around the corner, it's the perfect time to start planning vacations, trips, getaways and most importantly what to wear! And what's more important, during the summertime, than a great swimsuit? 

I have always struggled with finding that perfect bathing suit. Unfortunately, the way my body is set up, it's always been a tricky situation. Being petite and top heavy has made it difficult to find a perfect swim suit. Even more difficult is finding your perfect size on a budget. The suits are either a small everywhere or a large everywhere whereas I am small in some places and large in others. I love the cute cutout one pieces but finding a small sized one that is also large enough to fit my upper half is a major challenge. Also, most bikinis are sold in sets but the problem with that is that the sizing is the same for the tops and bottoms. So if you find a small bikini, both the tops and bottoms are usually a small. In this case, it's best to buy them individually. Even with this however, we still have to take into account the fact that large can come in different sizes. Just a large won't fit everyone so it's important to find brands that also carry specific sizes. 

Just in time for the pool opening in my building, I was able to find the perfect bikini! Once again, Burlington Coat Factory came through for me and this bikini only cost me $16.99! The brand itself is called Eidon. Eidon bikinis come in a variety of sizes and the sets also have a mix of size. My bikini top is a DD and the bottoms are a large. I've seen other sets that are DD and small or DD and extra small so there should be a perfect set for everyone. 

I'll update this post later on with more pictures and the fit. What are some of your favorite places to get a decent swimsuit? Let me know in the comments section ;).

 

J

Occidental Grill and Seafood on Pennsylvania Avenue

I had the great privilege of dining out at the Occidental Grill and seafood in DC. It was a special occasion so my friends and I wanted to go somewhere nice with great  service and even better food.

We decided on the Occidental Grill and Seafood right next to the Willard Hotel, which is also a very beautiful building inside and out but that's for a different post. Anyway, the ambiance in there is so nice and classy. The walls were covered with portraits of different statesmen from different time periods. The service there is impeccable, period. I think it was the best service I have ever had. Our waiter was very gracious and made sure that we always had what we needed.

I had the New York strip with the lobster mashed potatoes. Let me just say that the mash potatoes were absolutely delicious. I don't think that anything will ever compare after this one. I loved my steak as well, it was cooked just right. Everyone else enjoyed their meals which made it a wonderful dinner. I will say that I was very impressed when one of my friends relied her filet mignon for free after a mistake was made on her order and they had to take it back. On top of that, they gave us free champaign to toast my friend's graduation from law school. It was just the perfect way to end the evening. We all agreed that we will definitely be returning.

Has anyone else had a really great dining experience lately?

 

J

New York Strip

New York Strip

Lobster Mashed Potatoes

Lobster Mashed Potatoes

Tuna

Tuna

Lobster Bisque

Lobster Bisque

Aries in Philadelphia

Happy weekend!

 

Taking a trip with my cousins is always fun so when I was invited to my younger cousin's city for the weekend, I was super excited. It was great to finally plan something together since we have busy lives and hardly ever get to see each other. At the end of the week, I met up with my cousin and her friends  and we drove to our destination. 

Philadelphia is about a two our drive from where we are so it's not bad. Regardless, I'm glad I wasn't doing the driving! It's a beautiful city full of diversity and of course the character Rocky. It amazes me just how much the people here love Rocky so much as if he were a real person and not a character in a movie. Everywhere you go, it's all about the Italian Stallion. 

We stayed at my cousin's apartment near his school which has gorgeous views of the city. This location is absolutely breathtaking. The rooftop pool is to die for! I loved looking out at all the tall buildings surrounding us while laying out in the cool pool.

A cool place we checked out was Philadelphia's Magic Gardens. This is an interesting garden that has no plants or flowers. Instead, the garden is made up of different materials such as bottles ceramic and glass. It's a must see.

Inside Philadelphia's Magic Gardens

Inside Philadelphia's Magic Gardens

It wouldn't be a real trip to Philadelphia without trying the cheesesteak sandwiches. All I have to say is, yes Philly cheesesteaks should only be purchased in Philadelphia. It will never compare anywhere else. We went to a place called Jim's Steaks nearby and the line there literally wrapped around the building. I was dizzy with hunger and didn't know if I would make it but boy am I glad I waited because it was the best sandwich I have ever had. I would definitely recommend this place but if you do make it in there, please know what you are getting because they will clown you.

What are some of your favorite local spots? Please share in the comments section.

 

J

Great Deals that don't Weigh on Your Wallet

There is nothing like getting a new item, whether it's shoes or that skirt you were dying to get. Every time I order something new or when I go into one of my favorite stores and come out with new clothes. It feels great when you can get out and purchase everything you wanted in the store. But this is the real world and most times you just can't get everything you want, especially not if you are working with a budget. Luckily for us, we have some options.

First, don't knock out big and cheap department store chains. My top four are Ross Stores, Burlington Coat Factory, TJ MAXX, and Marshall's. I can usually find popular brands at these stores at more than half the costs! they may not have all the in season high end brands all the time, but they also aren't selling something from twenty seasons ago either. I have found a pair of in season name brand shoes at Ross for half the price it was offered at another store. You really never know what you might find.

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I have been on a major shoe binge lately and now I can't stop buying them. The other day I bought some brand new shoes as well as a few other items from Burlington Coat Factory and I only spent a little over $100 dollars on my purchases. Shoe brands included BCBG, Chinese Laundry, Calvin Klein, and Steve Madden. These were all great quality shoes and brands that I love. The cheapest shoes were $9.99 and the most expensive was $29.99. And these are just shoes alone!

What about you guys? Where do you like to find a good bargain? Let me know in the comment section.

 

J

 

Sun Shine and Flowers

I love flowers but what girl doesn't right? I have spent a lot of time growing different plants from vegetables to fruits to gorgeous flowers. There is something about colorful flowers that just makes everything seem right. 

Besides growing my own plants, I have visited different places like the arboretum as well as other public gardens. These places are cool because they have more varieties of plants than what you would find in a typical person's home. They have the most beautiful trees and flowers. At the National Arboretum in DC, they have some cool palm trees as well as bonsai trees that are way older than the United States. How cool does it sound to see a bonsai from the 1600's?

I am still discovering different places I can go to see even more beautiful plants. Any suggestions?

 

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A Taste of "OZ" in the District

Hey All,

 

One of my favorite pastimes of all time is to sit down and just eat delicious food. Who doesn't love food? I can literally all day as long as the food is good and I like it. One thing I really love is a good brunch especially if it's a all you can eat bottomless brunch. You can eat as much as you can and drink as much as you can, what's not to love?

A great place for just that is Oz Restaurant and Bar in Arlington, Virginia. It's a great restaurant that offers authentic Australian food with a lot of great options for those who are feeling especially adventurous. Kangaroo sliders anyone?

Back to Oz brunch: 

  1. I love everything, especially the bacon
  2. The portions are just right
  3. Penny mimosas: orange, cranberry, pineapple
  4. ALL YOU CAN EAT 

Not only is the food great, but the ambiance and decor is also pleasant. This place is definitely one of my favorite place to brunch. What about you guys? Where do you brunch? 

 

J

Getting Motivated to Stay Fit Now and for Life

Hey Guys,

I have been going to the gym on and off for years now and I can't seem to just keep up with it. Anyone else having this problem? For some reason, I can't seem to stay motivated long enough to actually reach my goals. I would like to build muscles and be fit. I even live in a building with a gym on the first floor, yet I have not been utilizing it.

Starting today, I have made a promise to myself to make it to the gym and start out slow so that I can eventually make this a habit. Gotta get healthy at some point right? For now I'll focus on cardio until I feel that I'm ready to start lifting again. Maybe in a few months I can become a fitness expert.

What about you guys? How does everyone stay motivated long enough to meet their fitness goals. What works? What doesn't? Please leave a tip or two in the comment section.

 

J

The Deep Blue Sea

Hey all,

 

One of my favorite things in the world is the ocean. Maybe it's because of how calming and soothing it is (I even go to sleep listening to the sounds of the ocean) or even how mysterious it is. The ocean is beautiful and so vast that there is no way we as humans are anywhere near knowing everything there is to know about it. 

The oceans near where I grew up, weren't the prettiest. They were always on the murky side in hues of brown and grey. Yet, I still loved it and enjoyed playing in it. However, I had to stop going to the beach because I started having severe allergic reactions right after swimming at the beach.  After years of avoiding the beach, I finally made it there as an adult. Fortunately for me, I no longer had allergic reactions. 

I feel so lucky now to have seen better looking ocean waters especially in my favorite place in the United States: California. The state has beautiful bodies of water, probably not as beautiful as some other areas, but pretty enough. I look forward to seeing the ocean very soon. Maybe someplace exotic next time.

 

J

A Touristy Day in Washington

Hello there,

It has been a crazy and busy week for me and it was time to unwind and relax. After a major family emergency, I just couldn't keep up with all of my responsibilities. But it is a new day and a new week and things are finally looking up.

 It was nice to get out an walk around the District and finally hang out on Capitol Hill. The weather was beautiful and perfect for a long walk. I visited the capitol building which is a gorgeous piece of architecture not only on the outside but also on the inside as well. I got to learn some of its history and see beautiful artworks on its walls. There is so much to learn from taking a tour of this area that I would definitely recommend it if you are ever in Washington. 

Because I have always loved to read, one place I really enjoyed was the Library of Congress. It is truly one of the most beautiful, if not the most beautiful, Libraries I have ever seen. The design is absolutely breathtaking. Take a look at some of the gorgeous pictures and let me know what you think. Have you been? Will you go?

 

J

Looking for a New Highlighter?

Trying on my new coconut glow highlighter by Marc Jacobs Beauty.

Trying on my new coconut glow highlighter by Marc Jacobs Beauty.

Hello Loves,

 

So I was in the market for a new highlighter when I joined the @MarcBeauty #contest and was sent this complimentary #CoconutGlow in Dew You, courtesy of @influenster. 

What I love about this product is how light and vibrant it is on your skin. it goes very well with my foundation giving me a beautiful golden glow. Anyone who knows me knows how much I love coconuts so it was definitely a plus that this is a coconut gel highlighter. 

 

Just to give you an idea of what it looks like with full makeup, check out this picture taken on my birthday.

 

J

#CoconutGlow gel highlighter on MAC Studio Fix foundation.

#CoconutGlow gel highlighter on MAC Studio Fix foundation.

Aries in the District

Good morning from DC!

 

I have been living in Washington DC for a little over a year now and it's been great! What I love most about the city is the convenience. Everything you could possibly need and want is within walking distance and there's always a reliable means of transportation. I am able to walk out of my apartment, get on the metro and get to the many shops around here from Victoria's Secret to Dior. There is something for everyone. The museums and monuments here are wonderful and you can find great food options with influences from around the world. Everywhere you go, there's always something to do. 

These are just some of the few reasons why I love living in the city. What are your thoughts on city living?

 

J

Aries Season in Effect

Hello loves,

It has been a wonderful birthday weekend. I went to pick up my new dress from my good friends and they ended up taking me out for a nice happy hour where we spent the night dancing. On my Birthday, April 15th, I spent the day getting my hair done as well as getting ready for my dinner later that night at the Skydive Restaurant which is the DC area's only rotating restaurant with gorgeous views of the city. I would definitely recommend it just for the experience alone. The food is okay. I of course had the steak which was cooked the way I like it and it was good but nothing special. 

On Sunday, I had a very relaxing day and even slept in a bit. I spent the rest of the day on the rooftop where some neighbors were kind enough to share their BBQ with me. My friend came over with some gorgeous flowers and a little something from Victoria's Secret. 

All in all a lovely weekend it was. I hope everyone had as great a time as I did.\

 

 

J

 

Yummy Spinach Salad

Evening loves,

I have been on a health binge lately and I found some inspiration for a delicious dish online and I wanted to give it a try. It's very simple to prepare as all you need to do is brown some chicken and mix it up with some fresh spinach and, my personal favorite, pomegranates. You can add your favorite dressing as well but I just make a mixture of extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon juice, vinegar, and some salt and pepper to taste. 

What healthy snacks have you tried lately?

 

J

Cocktails and Boat Rides

Hello again!

Spring is finally in the air in the District and what better way to enjoy the great weather than a lovely boat ride around the potomac to gaze at the blooming cherry blossoms? 

Unfortunately for me, there wasn't much blossoms to see because of the random snowfall we endured a couple weeks back which killed most blooms right away. Anyway, I was still able to capture the beautiful Potomac river as well as a few iconic buildings in the Capitol under a beautiful sunset.

Hope you enjoy the pictures!

 

J

 

 

Hala Madrid!

Hey guys,

I just wanted to share a few pictures I took at the Real Madrid stadium. Not only is it the greatest stadium of the greatest football club in the world, it also has a small section full of artifacts and images of the History of the football club. As a major history buff, this was a beautiful surprise. 

 

J