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Quick & Easy Truffle Mac & Cheese (vegan + gf)


Since it’s comfort food season, I’ll occasionally throw in chili, tomato soup & grilled avocado & cheese sandwiches, or minestrone and paninis into our dinner mix. Mac and cheese is another easy staple to add as a side dish.

I’ve tried countless vegan mac & cheese recipes and they usually require a ridiculous amount of ingredients and never resemble the cheesy comfort dish. So I got basic and created my own, the same way I make it for my family, using only 4 ingredients and the result is amazing! This isn’t the type of measured recipe, but it’s super simple and can be made all in one pot! To add to the deliciousness, drizzle black truffle oil on once served!

  • Brown Rice Pasta
  • Daiya Cheddar Shreds
  • Earth Balance Butter
  • Original Unsweetened Cashew Milk
  • Pink Himalayan Salt, Fresh Ground Black Pepper
  • Truffle Oil (optional)

Boil the brown rice pasta until cooked. Strain, rinse in strainer and return to pot. Add 1-2 TBSP butter, and stir until melted. Add cheese by the handful as you are stirring, until melted and reached desired cheesy consistency. Add Cashew milk for creaminess, while stirring. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste. Serve in bowls and drizzle with truffle oil.

Enjoy!

Mermaid Dry Shampoo

There are certain things that simplify life, dry shampoo being one of them! Luckily I get away with two washes and styles, and dry shampoo the other days of the week. After reading an article on the scary ingredients most dry shampoos contain, I checked the label on my regular go-to and saw ingredients like liquified petroleum gas! No thanks. Since it’s the hair product I use the most, I recently switched to a version free of parabens, sulfates and phthalates. The other major benefits is it’s all organic, and doesn’t have any harsh chemicals. I noticed that dry shampoo in the powder form goes a really long way. Sprinkling it into my palms and rubbing it into my roots absorbs oil and creates a ton of volume, without the damp white residue the aerosol form can leave behind.  How cute is the packaging?

Season Staples

season-staples

1 | 2 (here & here) | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16

This season is all about texture and suede is on my radar. I became obsessed with this Moto jacket the second I spotted it. ‘Tis the season to layer, and what better way to do so than these basic v-neck tees, that A) aren’t see through B) wash well and C) are under $20! I’m loving the lace up trend, what a fun spin on a trendy tee (under $30!) for an instantly stylish look. OTK boots are universally flattering, and I couldn’t be more in love with this versatile neutral hue! Get 20% off here) One thing I live in, in cold temps is long, cozy cardigans. This are some of my favorite hues to sport during my favorite season!

One Year

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One year ago today I married my best friend. It could not have been a more special day! I am so lucky to have him in my life as a husband and father. I thought it would be the perfect time to share some photos to relive such a perfect day. Happy Anniversary baby!

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Fathers Day Gift Guide 16

Watch | Shirt | Tie | Belt | Briefcase | Shoes | Headphones | Helmet | Hoodie | Shoes | Fitbit | Aviators | Hat | Backpack | Skincare | Wallet

Fit Finds // Under $100

Fit Finds Under $100

Hoodie | Water Bottle | Sports Bra | Shoes | Cropped Leggings | Towel | TankHair Ties

Happy Monday! There’s something about cute workout clothes that make working out something to look forward to! Loving all of this fun finds and cool cutouts!

A New Routine


This week, I was given the green light to resume workouts, and I could not be more ecstatic. I just feel better when I’m  working out daily, and I have never been more motivated to get back in shape. 

When I’m working out daily, I tend to stick to all other routines more consistently, like my weekly beauty mask. Since I’m feeling like a new person this week, I decided to switch up my usual mask routine with something new

 Lately, I don’t attempt anything without multitasking, as I applied a layer and went on to wash bottles and load up the sertilizer. By the time I was finished, the mask had already dried and was ready to rinse off. The fact that it is quick-drying, makes it so much more seseptable for me to use. 

Curious to see how well it “pulled the gunk out of my pores” since it isn’t a peel off mask, I rinsed my face with warm water and was left completely amazed. It wiped my pores clean. I was so impressed with the facial-like results (without the inflammation) that I couldn’t wait to use it again, and feel like my face is clearer than ever. It’s seriously a game changing beauty product. 

My Baby Registry Must Haves

Registry Must Haves

When I first picked up a Baby Registry Checklist, I couldn’t have been more overwhelmed! There were items on it that I have never even heard of (i.e. a sheet saver) I went through the check list and compared reviews on each product, before adding them to my registry. I used a universal baby registry, so I could register for items from numerous stores (even Etsy!) The funny part is, a lot of our essential “can’t live without” products, are items we bought after Hudson arrived, so we definitely know what it’s like to live without them (and it wasn’t ideal.)

Dock-A-Tot – My mom had read amazing reviews about this prior to Hudson’s arrival and finally decided it would be a good idea to gift us one after he arrived. I wasn’t really sure what was so great about it, until Hudson was 2 weeks old, and spent an entire night awake, without sleeping in between any feedings. The following night, I decided to put the Dock-A-Tot inside his bassinet (it fits perfectly) ever since, the second he is laid in it, he falls straight to sleep, and sleeps wonderfully! The reviews are spot on, it truly is a miracle sleeper!

Owlet Baby Monitor – The Owlet sock monitors Hudson’s heart rate and oxygen levels at night, which I can monitor on my smartphone, keeping my mind at ease while he sleeps.

ZoLi ‘BUZZ B.™’ Nail Trimmer – Hudson takes after his mama, his nails grow like crazy, so we use this nail filer at least once a week, eliminating the need to have to clip his nails.

Aden + Anais Silky Soft Burpy Bibs – Aden + Anais makes a couple different versions of these, but the  ones made from 100% rayon made from bamboo are like a dream! Not only is the burp cloth/bib hybrid super convenient, but they’re just so incredibly soft on my baby’s skin, I’d hate to use anything else!

Baby Breeza Formula Pro – This wasn’t an item I registered for, because I never planned on giving Hudson formula, but with all of the complications, being a premie in the beginning I had no choice but to supplement. Prior to this purchase, I would make a pitcher of formula, measure it out into bottles, and keep them in a fridge we had to get for our upstairs, then warm them in a bottle warmer that took 20 minutes to warm before each feeding. Hudson was not a happy camper. With the Formula Pro, this process is literally cut down to 10 seconds. It’s like a Keurig for baby formula. You just stick a bottle under and press “start,” and it dispenses the correct measurement of water and formula, warmed to a proper temperature for feeding. This. is. a. life. changer.

4 Moms Infant Tub – I love everything about this tub, there are just so many innovative features that make bath time so convenient. The temperature controlled tub lets you know what a safe water temperature range is when filling it up, and the tub is designed to keep fresh water in, and dirty water out (extremely convenient if your baby pees within the first minute of getting in the tub like mine!)

HALO® Bassinest™ Swivel Sleeper – This bassinet makes nighttime so easy, because Hudson is right beside our bed when he sleeps. I can pick him right up for feedings, without even having to get out of bed or check on him at anytime.

Boppy Petite Trellis Luxe Feeding Pillow – This pillow is so convenient for nursing, as well as bottle feeding. Hudson loves to sit propped up in it, as well.

 The winner of the Freshly Picked Moccasins Giveaway is @aubreymeadows! Congrats Aubrey!

Hudson Reed’s Birth Story


We welcomed our sweet baby boy, Hudson Reed Laurenza on April 5th, 2016 at 2:10 am. He weighed in at 6 lbs 1 oz and  19 inches long.

From the beginning of my pregnancy, I had a strong intuition I would go into labor a few weeks early. I was lucky to have a pretty easy pregnancy, feeling pretty well until a little over a week before going into labor. I started feeling much differently and I knew it was a strong indication he would be coming much sooner than later. 

I woke up at 4:47am on Monday, April 4th, feeling like my water slowly broke. I got up, laid back down for an hour and  still felt the same trickling feeling. I called the doctor’s office at 9am as my husband was about to leave for a meeting, and they said to come in immediately. We packed the car for the hospital and headed to the doctor’s office. Although the test the doctor had conducted didn’t show up as my water breaking, I had a strong inclination to get tested at the hospital anyway. Sure enough, it had. 

After 22 very long difficult hours, our precious baby boy arrived. They laid him on me for a split second, and I couldn’t believe how tiny he was. They took him to get his measurements, and suddenly  nurses were surrounding him telling us that he was going straight to the NICU and they didn’t know how long it would be before we would get to see him. It was extremely overwhelming to process, after being so excited that he was finally here. My husband had to go out and tell our parents that were excitedly waiting, that they wouldn’t be able to meet him that night. 

Before they took him, I asked to see him through the incubator, once they put him in it, since I haven’t even seen what he had looked like yet. They made a last minute decision, instead of putting him in the incubator, to try skin to skin contact with me to see if his breathing and coloring would improve. Sure enough within minutes of snuggling on my chest, he started breathing normally and his color started changing. They didn’t end up having to take him to the NICU at all, and I could not have been more grateful.

Our parents were able to come in and meet him after all and I was so thankful! 

From that moment on there is nothing I love more than having him snuggle on my chest. It’s the best feeling in the world. I just wanted to hold him and stare at him for hours in the hospital, I couldn’t believe how perfect and precious he was!

Hudson had experienced external head trauma from being stuck in the same position for hours during labor, as well as being posterior, and the cord wrapped around his neck. We experienced a very difficult delivery, along with battling low blood sugar the first 24 hours, then later on high billirubin levels, which we had to make trips to the hospital for bloodwork everyday until he was a little over two weeks old, and wearing a billiblanket 24 hours a day when we were home. He had so many factors stacked against him, especially being preterm, arriving almost 4 weeks early, but I am so grateful he overcame them all within the first couple weeks, and is doing wonderful now! He’s such a content baby, and so alert and observant, always looking around with his big blue eyes. We are so blessed to call him ours! 

instagram roundup / saturday sales

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Fresh fruit has been a serious go-to craving as of late. [macbook cover / wallet]

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I made my Best Banana Bread Recipe into fresh muffins & it’s even better (update: use 3 overripe organic bananas for best consistency) they’re vegan & gluten free

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My favorite hue I shared last week lasted me 9 whole days! My usual run is 3-4 with polish. This polish & top coat are amazing.

WEEKEND SALES

Old-Navy-Sale

Old Navy is having a 30% off sale today only online! Stock up on Spring staples, and cute sandals for a fraction of the price, no code needed!

denim | sunglasses | slides | top

field jacket | poncho | mules

cold shoulder top | lace up gladiators | sunglasses | shorts

Banana Republic: 40% off your purchase, until 12pm PST, Code: BRSPRING

Gap: 35% off your purchase until 12pm PST, Code: HELLODAY

Anthropologie: Extra 25% off Sale Clothing, Code: XTRAXTRA