Ellis Island Family History Day: My Grandparents

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I’m really proud of my Italian heritage. Since today is Ellis Island Family History Day, I wanted to share just a little bit of history about my own family. My father is first generation Italian American. He is a full-blooded Italian, and with his marriage to my mother, that makes me half Italian. I’ve always… [Read More]

Churro Cookies Recipe

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Cinco de Mayo is just a couple weeks away. I’m getting my margarita recipes ready, and scouting out the best guacamole recipe. But those are so obvious. I mean, I always have those things on Cinco de Mayo. I wanted to add something else fun to my menu, so I searched for interesting churro recipes…. [Read More]

Wardrobe Essential: Chambray Shirt

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{Stacey’s Look: LOFT Shirt, LOFT Necklace (similar)} One of my favorite wardrobe essentials is this ultra-soft, collarless, chambray shirt. I love it because it’s light-weight, doesn’t wrinkle, and goes with everything. I like layer it over dark jeans or a dress, almost like I would a jean jacket or cardigan. The light wash looks great… [Read More]

Practical or Posh: High Heel Leather Mules

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One of spring’s hottest shoe trends is high heel leather mules. Unlike the mules of the past, this spring, mules are youthful and fun (look at these Sophia Webster’s). Mules for spring come in lots of different shapes, colors, and heel heights and widths. I especially like these nude high heel mules from Vince because they… [Read More]

National Siblings Day: My Big Sister

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Today is National Siblings Day. I feel very lucky to have a sibling that I also consider my friend. Things didn’t start out that way though. My sister and I were very different kids growing up. I don’t have very many memories of us playing together because we liked very different things. My earliest memories… [Read More]

DIY Throw Pillows For Couch

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When we moved to Phoenix, we bought a new couch that came with two retro-70’s print throw pillows. Not my favorite, but we’ve used them for the last several months since we had them. Recently, the seams began to split and they need mending. I see this as a good thing because I don’t like… [Read More]

Practical or Posh: Black and White Striped Flats

black and white striped flats

One of my all-time favorite pieces of clothing is a black and white striped blouse from J. Crew. I’ve owned it for years, but it’s one of those pieces that never goes out of style. Even better, black and white goes with everything. For spring, I’ve noticed several pairs of black and white striped flats…. [Read More]

Three Pays: Railroad Stripe Jeans

railroad stripe jeans

What do you think of railroad stripe jeans? Initially, they reminded me of my childhood—I’m pretty sure I had a train conductor’s hat, with the same railroad stripes, at some point. But I kind of like the youthful flare railroad stripe jeans have to them. I love this J. Crew look for several reasons. First,… [Read More]

Flare Jeans Under $50

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Flare jeans are synonymous with the 70s. I always imagine a hippie chick with a flower wreath around her head and ultra wide, light washed, high waisted jeans. But flare jeans aren’t just retro, they are totally on-trend for spring. I’ve tried the super wide leg flared jeans, and even though I’m tall, they aren’t… [Read More]

8 Easter Egg Decorating Ideas for Adults

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Have you dyed your eggs yet? It’s something I’ve been thinking about doing with Rocco, but then I remember how not into cookie decorating he was at Christmas. I’m thinking egg dying might have to wait until next year. Or does it? There are so many cool and unique Easter egg decorating ideas out there… [Read More]

Asparagus Farro Risotto with Sweet Peas

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Do you do meatless Mondays? This asparagus farro risotto with sweet peas is a great choice. Farro is my new favorite grain. On a recent trip to San Francisco, my friend suggested we try Barbacco, which was delicious. I ordered the farro “risotto” with mushrooms. The waiter asked me if I’d ever eaten farro before–apparently, other… [Read More]

Fashion Forward Sneakers

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Am I too old to wear high tops? I recently texted this question to my husband, as I was browsing the abundant sneaker selection at Nordstrom. I was immediately drawn to all the brightly colored, fashion forward sneakers for women. Normally, I don’t pay much attention to sneakers. I mean, I own a few pairs… [Read More]

Black and White Blazer

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How you dress strongly influences how you feel and how others perceive you (like it or not). Most work days, I don’t overthink my outfit. I choose basics with a bit of flare, either a graphic print, fun jewelry, or sassy shoes. But when there’s a big meeting, I try a bit harder to look extra… [Read More]

Stylish Home Accents Under $100

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To be honest, most of my home decor has been acquired out of necessity, not with as much thought as I would like. A lot of it is disposable — stuff I bought in my early-mid twenties to fill space. The majority of the pieces I love the most were gifts. One of my students… [Read More]

Monthly Best Beauty Finds

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I’ve been searching for a powder with SPF for awhile. I’d heard great things about Peter Thomas Roth’s SPF powder, but I didn’t like the applicator brush and  prefer a pressed powder. I was pretty happy when I spotted this Physician’s Formula SPF pressed powder for under $15. Excited about my finding, I thought it would… [Read More]

8 Vegetarian Asparagus Recipes

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Asparagus was 88 cents a pound at the grocery store last weekend. Yay! Seriously, I was really excited. Sometimes, it’s the small things in life. I know it might sound funny, but I get really excited when it’s asparagus season. My favorite quick vegetable side dish is oven roasted asparagus with olive oil and a… [Read More]

2015 Pantone Color of the Year

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I’ve always been into fashion, but since I started blogging, I’ve become hyper aware of trends and styles. I didn’t even know what a Pantone color was until about a year ago. Now that I follow color trends more closely, I was super excited when they announced marsala as the 2015 Pantone color of the… [Read More]

Model Mom Style: Eclectic Style

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I’m so excited to introduce you to our newest Model Mom, Aimee. I met Aimee through one of our previous model moms, Andrea. Aimee was kind enough to let us shoot at her gorgeous, newly remodeled home. The moment she opened her large wooden front door, I felt an immense warmth and kindness radiating from… [Read More]

Negative Space Manicure

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My favorite nail art trend is the negative space manicure. So what is negative space? In the art world, negative space is the space around and between objects that make interesting shapes, not the shape of the object itself. The negative space manicure trend had a major moment last fall and this spring at Fashion Week…. [Read More]

Discovering the Picacho Peak Poppies

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Jade heard on NPR that the poppies were going to be in full bloom this past weekend because of all the rain and warmer temperatures we’ve had this spring. So, we took a quick road trip to see the Pichacho Peak poppies on Saturday. We’ve never been down to Picacho Peak State Park. Since it’s only a… [Read More]

Cast Iron Skillet Popeye Pizza

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My husband, Jade, heard about using a cast iron skillet to make deep dish pizza while listening to the Splendid Table. We finally got a cast iron skillet last fall to make honey sage cornbread, but we haven’t used it all that much.  Jade was interested to see how a pizza would turn out in… [Read More]

My New Layered Bob

new layered bob haircut

  You know when you reach that point with trying to grow out your hair where you just can’t take it anymore? I reached that breaking point last week. I was tired of trying to grow out my bangs, layers, and blondish highlights. My hair looked so limp, so lifeless, just so blah. So I… [Read More]

Paint Splatter Purses Trend

paint splatter purses

Paint splattered clothing made a major come back this past fall. I say “come back” because I can remember this intentionally messy trend from way back in the 80’s. I personally wouldn’t wear it on my clothes, but I’m really loving paint splatter purses, shoes and accessories (look at these Manolos!). I first fell for the… [Read More]

8 Homemade Hot Chocolate Recipes

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My new office gives us unlimited hot drinks. Most days, I stick with my favorite earl gray, but the past couple afternoons, I’ve indulged by sipping a couple pre-packaged hot chocolates. Those little packets bring back memories of building snow forts and giant snowmen in my front yard. I loved playing in the snow as… [Read More]

New York Fashion Week F/W 2015

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New York Fashion Week F/W 2015 wraps up on Thursday. I love fashion week. Even though I haven’t attended yet, it’s on my bucket list. It almost felt like I was there, just by scanning my Instagram feed. There were so many runway images and short video clips to watch. A lot of the fall/winter… [Read More]

Funfetti Cake Pops From Scratch

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For my daughter’s first birthday, I made her a funfetti cake from scratch. I made way too much cake though, so I had almost an entire cake and enough frosting left to make funfetti cake pops. I’d never made cake pops before, so I wasn’t sure where to start. I created my recipe based on… [Read More]

Stacey’s Oscars Red Carpet Ensemble

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I’m going to attend the Oscars someday. I don’t have grand plans to take up acting, I just want to hang out on the red carpet in a really fabulous gown. Since I’m not going this year, I thought it would be fun to put together a look I’d wear on the Oscars red carpet… [Read More]

Practical or Posh: Red Lace Dress with Sleeves

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So I’m a little late on the national wear red day, but it’s never too late to wear a red dress. Wearing red shows you are confident and bold. Red is actually one of my favorite colors to wear when I need a little pick me up or I have an important meeting. I immediately… [Read More]

Baby First Birthday + DIY Rag Tie Banner

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My baby girl turned one recently. Happy Birthday Gigi! To celebrate, I wanted to decorate a bit, but didn’t want to do anything too time-consuming (like Rocco’s fire truck party). My time is really pressed with work and juggling the kids, so I only had one weekend to do her decorations, the cake, and her outfit…. [Read More]

Homemade Funfetti Birthday Cake

homemade funfetti birthday cake

For my daughter’s first birthday, I decided to make a homemade funfetti birthday cake for a couple reason. First, it’s cute and looks pretty. Second, I made a low-sugar healthy smash cake for my son’s first birthday, and he didn’t dig into it like I had hoped. I figured the lure of the sweet buttery… [Read More]

Best and Worst Super Bowl Commercials 2015

best and worst super bowl commercials 2015

Like a lot of girls I know, we watch the Super Bowl for the commercials and the half-time show. Katy Perry killed it, although her mic didn’t sound quite right. I paid a little more attention to the actual game this year. I was cheering for the Seahawks, only because Russel Wilson is a fellow… [Read More]

Heart Fashion Accessories

heart fashion accessories

Heart fashion accessories aren’t just for Valentine’s day. Heart shapes are a fashion staple. I love heart prints, as much on clothes as I do on accessories. Remember those popular J.Crew sweaters with the giant hearts on the chest from a couple years back (Kate Spade makes a cute one now)? If you like hearts, but don’t want to… [Read More]

10 Winter Soup Recipes

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I’ve been on a soup kick lately. Maybe it’s because it’s winter (but it’s like 80 in Phoenix today, so cold weather isn’t the motivator). Really, I think it’s because soup is so comforting. The last month has been kind of stressful. My kids have been sick almost non-stop since New Years and on top… [Read More]

Why You Should Use Oil Face Cleansers

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I was as skeptical as you. I definitely thought oil face cleansers would make my combination skin oilier, shinier, and make me break out. I had no real basis for my beliefs, other than I just thought it seemed wrong to add oil when I’m trying to remove oil. You know what I mean? But I’ve… [Read More]

One Look, Three Pays: Cobalt Blue Coat

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One of the ways I relax after a long day of work and parenting is to browse internet retailers to see what’s new. When I saw this look that Nordstrom put together, the striking cobalt blue coat immediately caught my eye. I am also impressed with their expert layering. Even with a sweater, tunic and coat,… [Read More]

9 Adorable Baby Girl Birthday Themes

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My daughter turns one next month. So, I’ve been digging around on Pinterest, looking for cute first birthday ideas. I found so many cute baby girl birthday themes, it was hard to narrow them down. What I did find—a lot of pink. Don’t get me wrong, I love pink, but it was refreshing to find… [Read More]

The Best Healthy Crock Pot Turkey Chili

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I love cooking in our crock pot, especially on the weekends. You throw everything in first thing in the morning, and by dinner time, you have a hot and hearty dish. Crock pots dishes are just so easy to make and not at all fussy. I recently discovered a highly rated turkey chili recipe, but it was… [Read More]

Practical or Posh: Diamond Ear Crawler

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Lately, I’ve been in an accessories funk. I have tons of fun statement necklaces, but hardly any cool earrings. I admit I get really lazy with changing out my classic diamond studs. The ear crawlers and earring jackets I’ve seen lately have sparked my interest enough that I think I’m ready to retire my studs, for now…. [Read More]

9 Chocolate Peanut Butter Dessert Recipes

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Over the holidays, along with sugar cookies, I made some of my childhood favorites — puppy chow and special k bars. If you haven’t tried these no-oven-required recipes before, you should. They are ridiculously easy to make and really yummy. The perfect chocolate and peanut butter desserts recipes ring in the new year and a new… [Read More]

Model Mom Style: Wearing Prints

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For our third Model Mom Style, Andrea agreed to share her style tips and let us use her house as our backdrop. When I first met Andrea (and went through her closet), I was impressed with her choice and use of prints in her wardrobe. She owns her own business as an event planner, so… [Read More]

Unique Winter Accessories

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As I write this, I’m wrapped in an old North Face fleece, because my office is freezing. Yes, I live in the valley of the sun. But lately, it’s been really cold here (ok, in the 30’s at night and 50’s during the day, but still very cold for the dessert!). When I moved to… [Read More]

Top 10 Family and Food Blog Posts of 2014

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A lot has changed this year. Two biggies—my daughter Giada was born and we left California and moved back ‘home’. My favorite part about New Years Eve is reflecting on the year that’s gone by and making plans for the future. With reflection in mind, I looked back at all the blog posts from the year… [Read More]

Top 10 Fashion and Beauty Posts of 2014

top ten fashion and beauty posts 2014

Readers, today’s post is for, and because of, you. Thank you for your support and for participating in our rating system at the bottom of each post. Your feedback is important because it tells me which posts you like or don’t like. 2014 was my first full year blogging and I am constantly looking for ways to be better. That’s… [Read More]

What To Do With Unwanted Christmas Gifts

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Did you get an ugly Christmas sweater? Another pair of flannel pajamas? A really ugly set of dishes? Despite your family and friends’ thoughtfulness and spirit of giving, I’m sure you got something you don’t like, don’t have space for, or can’t use. Those unwanted items don’t have to go to waste or take up… [Read More]

McCormick Railroad Park Christmas Lights

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Merry Christmas! Tomorrow, we’re planning a low-key day with our little family. Our kids are still so young to really ‘get’ Christmas, but Rocco is starting to catch on. He recently found our Santa hat, and likes to wear that around the house, chanting ‘Santa hat, Santa hat’. He’s also really into Christmas lights. On… [Read More]

New Years Eve Looks

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New Years Eve is one of those special occasions where I think it’s totally acceptable to splurge a little bit on your look. You should buy something that makes you feel incredibly special, at least every now and then. If budget is your worry, there are tons of great party dresses out there at reasonable… [Read More]

How to Wear Bold Eyeliner

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When it comes to makeup, I shy away from lipstick, but I’ve always been into playing up my eyes. I’m terrible at accepting compliments, but there is one that’s stuck with me for years. A friend in high school told me she loved my eye makeup, the way my lashes fanned out and how they… [Read More]

Model Mom Style: Layering Accessories

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A couple weeks ago, I started a new series called model mom style, to show you how working moms can look stylish and cool. This week, my friend Erin is our model mom. I met Erin about ten years ago while we were in graduate school. I noticed her right away because she always looked fashionable… [Read More]

Florentine Lace Cookies

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I’m always looking for new ways to connect with my Italian heritage—most of the time, that involves trying a new recipe. I first heard of Florentine lace cookies, while watching America’s Test Kitchen. I wasn’t sure I had the patience to make these because they seemed complicated—in reality, they are super easy to make, if you… [Read More]

When to Stop Whole Milk for Toddlers

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I’m a rule follower by nature. When Rocco turned one, I immediately switched him to whole milk, per the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and others’ suggestion. But when he turned two in October, I broke the rules. For once, their advice just didn’t make sense to me. Is there a right time when to… [Read More]

Stacey’s Christmas Wish List

Stacey's Christmas Wish List

My Christmas wish list almost wrote itself this year. I’ve been eyeing most of these items for awhile now. One of my favorite things about being a blogger is discovering brands and sharing what I love with my readers. It makes me feel like all my internet window shopping serves a purpose. Of all the things I’ve loved this year, here… [Read More]