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Category : Style

This winter was a tough one, wasn’t it? I mean, I wouldn’t really know because I wasn’t in the middle of it. But judging from the #chiberia hashtag & all the Instagram photos of people’s iPhone weather apps, it was a rough one.

Spring colors are here!

The good thing is that spring is finally here. And it’s ushering in it’s beautiful colors along with it. Does that just make you happy? Outfits are getting brighter, skirts are being busted out and yep — break out your bright pink nail polish because ladies, it’s time.

I actually think it’s kinda funny how colors change with the seasons. Why can’t I wear bright pink in the dead of winter? But I’m gonna go with it. I’m gonna share my favorite spring nail colors.

spring nail colors

Aren’t they all so gorgeous? It’s a really pretty break from the reds and plums & blacks. I love it.

The “it” thing is pastels

This season pastels are a thing. And if I’m being quite honest with you, pastels just aren’t my thing. I like a good bold color. The brighter the better. But I actually have liked the pastel trend on my nails! My personal favorite is mint green, salmon or white. I actually tried the white last summer and fell in love.

Polish doesn’t have to be expensive

My favorite brand of nail polish is Wet n Wild which you can buy at your local drug store for less than $2. Awesome, right? I picked one up on a whim once and have loved it ever since. It has a thick brush and lasts for days — longer than any other nail polish I’ve tried. Which goes to show you do not have a spend a ton of money to get a good manicure.

Here are a few tips for an at home mani:

  • Bottom/top coats matter — try a few out and find what works for you.
  • Let your nails dry a decent amount of time in between coats.
  • Have a pointed Q-tip handy with a cap half full of nail polish remover for mistakes.
  • Get a helping hand! If your right (or left) hand is always looking like a 2-year-old painted it, ask someone to do it for you. If you have a willing husband (or 2-year-old) you might get a better job done!

So are you going to try the pastel color trend on your nails this season? Or are you always a bright and bold fan? Either way, it’s fun to mix it up and try new colors!

And personally, I’m digging the pastels!

 

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This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the Facts Up Front program.

Nutella Facts up Front, Nutella

Facts Up Front

The importance of nutrition labels

No one can dispute the importance of nutrition labels. Consumers are more careful about the food we put into our bodies. Information like calories per serving and saturated fat content make a difference in the food we choose while shopping.

Macaroni Facts up Front

Why Facts Up Front matters

Traditional nutrition labels are generally on the back or the side of products, meaning you have to physically pick up and turn the box or container around to read the label. This doesn’t seem like a big deal — until you’re shopping with a four-year old. Shopping with my son means pushing an unwieldy, oversized car cart around the grocery store. That cart takes up more than my share of many aisles, and I try my hardest not to impede anyone else’s progress through the store by lingering over cereal boxes.

Facts Up Front displays key nutrition information — like calories, saturated fat, and fiber — on the front of product packages. Saturated fat, sugar, and sodium are always displayed on the Facts Up Front label, because those nutrients are recommended to be limited in a healthful diet. The labeling, now prevalent in many grocery stores, helps me make more informed choices while shopping.

Cheerios, Facts up Front

Use Facts Up Front to improve your nutrition IQ

Facts Up Front is more than a label. The Facts Up Front website is filled with tools, information, and resources to help you use the information you can find on labels to make more informed decisions about what you’re eating.

The Facts Up Front Nutrition Calculator lets you see the actual numbers you need to eat in order to maintain your weight. Want to lose or gain weight? Take the suggested numbers up or down. The calculator takes into account your age, current weight, height, and activity level. I plugged in my numbers and calculated my own recommendations.

Facts Up Front

One of the most helpful parts of the Nutrition Calculator, besides the numbers themselves, is the interactive nature of the results. When you hover over the different numbers, information pops up about sources for different vitamins and nutritional categories. So if you don’t know what to eat to meet your Vitamin A requirements? The Nutrition Calculator can help you find foods to help.

Facts Up Front

Let Facts Up Front help you make healthful choices

Facts Up Front — the label and the website resources — can change the way you grocery shop and meal plan for your family. Check out their Shopping and Meal Planning Tips the next time you’re making your family’s grocery list. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to incorporate their tips with the labels displayed on the front of the packages!

Do you read nutrition labels when you shop? Do you love the way Facts Up Front help bring nutritional information to the front of the packages?

 

 

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the Facts Up Front program.

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Easter is right around the corner as I’m sure you’ve seen if you’re ever on Pinterest! (April 20th if you were wondering!) Personally, I truly love this holiday for what it represents, the beautiful spring weather that is making itself known, and time when the whole family comes together.

However, when holidays like this come around, I’m usually stuck getting things together last minute, I don’t have time to decide on something to wear. I usually throw something on I’ve worn a million times before and my hair goes into a ‘messy bun.’ Whoever brought messy back — THANK YOU.

This time I am not going to get caught off guard. I’ve prepared three outfits to share with you today and I’m gonna rock one of them. I’m also pretty certain that no matter how you celebrate this holiday, one of these will work for you.

Coral me Happy! (Casual Easter Outfit)

Casual Easter sunday outfit

If church isn’t your vibe and you’d rather have a lovely brunch with friends, this is your outfit. Boyfriend jeans are adorably cute and super comfortable. Throw some coral/pink/yellow/lavender and you’ve got yourself an Easter outfit! Love the tank top and the clutch!

 Pretty in Pink

pink Easter sunday outfit

Beautiful, right? Can I have an excuse to wear this every day please? It’s the perfect pretty in pink to wear to church, family gathering, dinner, you name it! You could also switch out the heels to flats to rock that Easter egg hunt. We all know tea length skirts are in - let’s rock ‘em!

Easter Sunday

The perfect easter sunday outfit

Somehow this represents the perfect Easter Sunday outfit to me. If you do happen to go to church on Easter Sunday, this is perfect. It’s bright and colorful to match the season. It’s pretty and put together and modest and feminine. Sounds like a winning combo to me! That dress is gorgeous.

So there you have it! These are my three choices for Easter Sunday.

So tell me, which category do you think you’d fall into?
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Whether you’re hosting Easter brunch or headed off to another house, be sure to make a pitcher of this kid-friendly Easter punch. Filled with fresh fruit, various juices and ginger ale, it will be a hit with kids and adults alike.

kid-friendly easter punch

Since this kid-friendly Easter punch contains fresh fruit, it’s best to make it one or two hours before serving. This will allow the flavors to meld and make the punch taste even better. If you know you’ll be short on time the day of Easter, it can also be made the night before. That is, if you can keep the kids from drinking it when you’re not looking.

kid-friendly easter punch recipe

Kid-friendly Easter punch

Serves 8

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sliced organic strawberries
  • 1 to 2 blood oranges cut into small wedges
  • 1-1/2 cups pineapple juice
  • 3/4 cup fresh squeezed blood orange juice (should be 4 to 5 oranges)
  • 3/4 cup pomegranate juice
  • 16 ounces ginger ale (try Fever Tree ginger ale)
  • Optional: Soda water or club soda

Directions:

  1. Add fresh cut fruit to a pitcher.
  2. Pour in the blood orange juice, pineapple juice and pomegranate juice.
  3. Slowly pour in the ginger ale and stir the punch.
  4. Cover the pitcher and store in the fridge until ready to serve.
  5. To serve, pour the kid-friendly Easter punch into small glasses along with a little of the fresh fruit. If the kids find it a little too strong on the ginger, top with soda water or club soda.

Served with your favorite brunch foods, this kid-friendly Easter punch is definitely a crowd pleaser. If you’re serving a lot of people, the recipe can easily be doubled or tripled although you’ll want to put it in a punch bowl instead of a pitcher. Enjoy and happy Easter!

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Circus Announcement
Giveaway: $300 Gift Certificate from Minted

The circus fun continues! Savvy Sassy Moms, Project Nursery and friends teamed up for the month of April to turn our blogs into a three-ring circus! We are celebrating the craziness of motherhood and showcasing some of our favorite brands that help us manage our busy lives. Want to throw a party or add a little bit of the circus to your nursery or playroom? Our friends at Minted have you covered! One lucky reader will win a $300 gift certificate to Minted!

Let the Games Begin Invite

Minted is an online marketplace that crowdsources and sells graphic design and art from a global community of thousands of independent designers. The company produces beautifully designed premium products for the home, holidays and special occasions. Whether you are throwing a baby shower or first birthday, announcing the arrival of your little one or adding the finishing touches to your nursery with wall art, minted is your online resource.

Circus Party Invite

We especially love one of the newest additions to the Minted family, their party decor. Add that special touch to your next event with custom invites and matching party decor. You can bring your dream party to life with chic bunting banners, centerpieces, table signs and more—designed by Minted’s community of independent artists and customized by you.

Circus Decor (1)

WIN IT! One Project Nursery reader will win a $300 gift certificate to Minted. By entering our giveaway you agree to our official giveaway rules. Please enter by using the giveaway widget below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

SocialCircus Leaderboard

This is a sponsored post. Thanks for your support in our effort to bring you exciting giveaways.

 

 

 

 

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best-spring-shoes

Let’s skip the waxing on the beauty of the daffodils blooming and robins singing and get straight to the best part of spring: the shoes. Even the most frugal and least fashion-obsessed among us knows the need for a new pair of Sunday sandals or Saturday night heels to wear in warmer weather, and us shoppers herald the first signs of spring like hunters on opening day.

The shoe departments currently sport springtastic shoes in thousands of lovely looks to ogle and chose from. We have combed through the shops, style blogs, fashion mags and spring edits to identify the best spring shoes of 2014.

Floral Heels

floral-heels-spring-shoes

Keep your go-to dress from last season and simply switch out the shoes with a pair of these pretty pumps adorned with flowers. These prints are a perfect complement to a solid sheath, simple slacks and they even add a glam touch to cuffed boyfriend jeans.

1. ASOS Predict Heels at ASOS
2. J. Crew Collection Sloane Printed Heels at J. Crew
3. Ivanka Trump Gelana Floral Sandal at Nordstrom
4. Isabelle Printed Pumps at J. Crew Factory
Flat Ankle Strap Sandals

flat-ankle-strap-sandals-spring-shoes

Think of these flat ankle-strapped sandals as the new gladiator, and wear them just as you did those more intricate flat sandals of seasons past. Wear with shorts, skirts, jeans and maxi dresses. They add so much more elegance to casual looks than old chlorine-bleached flip flops!

1. Favorite Ankle-Strap Sandal at Forever 21
2. Milo Sandal at J. Crew Factory
3. Romana Italian Leather Sandals at Garnet Hill
4. Rachel Zoe Gracie Sandal on Piperlime
d’Orsay Flats

d-orsay-flats-spring-shoes-2014

This season’s flats are showing more skin. The d’Orsay flat is a retro look that separates the shoe into two parts, covering the toes and heel and showcasing the rest of the foot (perfect if you are between pedicures!) A chic alternate to the ballet slipper and a perfect pairing with every pant in your closet. Karlie Kloss even wore them recently with a formal dress.

1. Wanted Syrah d’Orsay Flat at Zappos
2. Steve Madden Elusion d’Orsay Flat at Piperlime
3. Breckelle’s Dolley d’Orsay Flat at Zooshoo
4. Monochrome Two-Part Polka Dot Flats at New Look
Wedge Cork Sandals
cork-wedge-sandals-spring-shoes

The easiest recipe for a slim line and shapely looking legs this spring. Combine leather straps in a shade that matches your skin tone with a cork wedge heel. Add to spring skirts and dresses and stir. Yield: one hot mama with sexy, slender legs!

1. Franco Sarto Cera Wedge at DSW
2. Kate Spade New York Tropez Wedge at Piperlime 
3. Dune Grappy leather Wedge Heel Sandals at John Lewis
4. Charles David Oriel Sandal at Nordstorm
Birkenstocks

birkenstocks-spring-shoes

Our most controversial choice of this round-up, “Birks” have the Savvy Sassy Moms divided. We agree that these hippie-chick staples are everywhere lately, and showcased on the most fashion-forward feet this spring. Other writers state that though they are “in style,” it doesn’t necessarily make them stylish. Although they are clunky and can make calves look chunky, you will be hard-pressed to find a more comfortable shoe. If you decide to hop on the Birkenstock train, we suggest you choose one of the newer, more refined strap styles and modern colors as pictured above.

1. Birkenstock Adria at Zappos
2. Birkenstock Mayari at Gravity Pope
3. Birkenstock Granada in Pewter at DSW
4. Birkenstock Adana at Birkenstock Store
5. Birkenstock Gizeh Birko-Flor at Zappos

What say you Savvy Sassy readers? Birks or d’Orsay? Floral or flat? What will YOU be buying this spring?
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circus-inspired books

Take your friends to the circus with our book club picks

The circus can be a dreamy, magical place or one filled with frightening clowns. Whether your book club members are interested in the history of animal treatment in traveling circuses or the more supernatural tone of magical dream worlds, circus-inspired books can be found for any group. Book club picks inspired by the circus make for a fun girls’ night in with friends.  Read one of the recommended books and discuss it over colorful cocktails and circus-inspired snacks.

Use the circus as a backdrop

One of the fantastic things about using circus-themed books for a book club meeting is most people have thoughts and opinions about the circus. Whether people enjoy the animal shows or wish something different had been done in the past, the history of different circuses is fascinating. Every book club has a member — or two — who can never quite get around to finishing the book, and John Irving and Sarah Gruen have written two very different books where the circus itself is a character, and even readers who haven’t finished the book will be able to participate in the discussions.

A Son of the Circus by John Irving is a dense, complicated book that involves a circus in India — among other complicated character arcs and story lines, as anyone who’s read a John Irving novel might guess (Amazon, $10). Filled with Irving’s typical outcasts and misfits, this book deals with a serial murderer with a connection to the circus.

book club picks

Sarah Gruen’s Water for Elephants is a story told in flashback, the ninety year old Joseph weaving a tale of life in a traveling circus (Amazon, $10). From veterinary student to circus animal doctor, Joseph comes of age in a world with its own laws and its own lawmakers, two charming and cruel men, one of whom happens to be married to the woman Joseph loves.

Young adult literature works for busy moms

Young adult books might feel like an easy path, but they’re actually genius choices for a book club filled with busy moms. YA novels tend to be quick reads and have lessons and themes that open doors to book club discussions. Moms with older kids can read the books concurrently with their children and get an entirely different perspective on the novels.

book club picks

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate won a Newbery Medal in 2013 (Amazon, $8). Ivan is based on an actual gorilla raised in captivity, but the novel stretches the imagination to tell the story from his point of view. Treated so much like a domesticated animal, Ivan forgets what it’s like to be a gorilla, until he meets a baby gorilla and questions his enclosed existence and the nature of art, animal nature and friendship.

Erin Morgenstern weaves a dreamlike tale set against the magical landscape of The Night Circus (Amazon, $5). The mysterious traveling circus is the magical battleground of competing magicians Celia and Marco — though they don’t fully understand the game they’ve been destined to play their entire lives. Morgenstern’s descriptive prose paints a gorgeous picture of a circus framed in a black and white visual playground.

Circus-inspired books that aren’t for the faint of heart

Circus imagery isn’t only about magical landscapes and performing animals. A layer of fear and horror accompanied circuses of the past, when side shows involved “circus freaks.”

Stephen King’s It isn’t truly a circus-inspired book, but the terrifying clown at the center of the story is the stuff of circus nightmares (Amazon, $8). Stephen King can be a hit or miss for book clubs, but the king of storytelling keeps readers turning pages — even if it’s only because they’re too scared to turn off their lights.

book club picks

Geek Love by Katherine Dunn is an award-winning, twisted, grotesque tale (Amazon, $11). The Binewskis are a family of — literal — freaks, self-created by an ambitious father and a mother who was more than willing to engage in a wide variety of radioactive treatments and drug exposure to create their own freak show. Their machinations work, and Dunn’s novel explores the ethical issue of genetic manipulation, the power of cults and the strange nature of family bonds. The book is intriguing but can be repulsive. If your book club is looking forward to the latest incarnation of American Horror StoryAHS: Freak Show — this might be the book to try.

 Do you have a favorite circus-inspired book?
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bravado designs

While Pregnant, Comfort is Key

Here’s the thing about being pregnant: The number one priority is comfort. Really. However, I am the first to admit that fashion is hugely important to me also, and that looking good is key to feeling good. Which is why throughout my pregnancy, I have made sure to not only be comfortable, but to also dress fashionably — a challenge at times, but I think I’ve pulled it off quite nicely. One area of fashion where comfort really is key is your under garments. This is especially true while pregnant, when things are growing at a rapid pace, and certain parts might become larger and more sensitive than ever before- both a blessing and curse, am I right? This is where the perfect bras come in real handy. And this is where Bravado Designs excels.

bravado

Left to Right: Body Silk Seamless, Allure Underwire, and Essential Embrace

Nursing bras that are cute and comfortable!

Bravado Designs has a great selection of maternity and nursing bras that are both cute and comfortable — no small feat, I’m sure. I have been wearing a few of their bras during my pregnancy, and can attest to their comfort and style! I love that they don’t make me feel frumpy and that they come in cute designs and pretty colors! Because let’s be real here, the worst feeling ever while you’re pregnant is to feel frumpy or undesirable. These bras do just the opposite. I love how soft they are and how they mold just so to my ever-growing shape. With their detachable clips, they will be the perfect transition bras into nursing, too!

If you are pregnant or nursing, these bras by Bravado are the perfect choice for both comfort and cuteness. They have a variety of styles and colors to choose from, making the necessity of bra shopping while pregnant a fun experience! Who even knew that was possible?

Which bra is your favorite?
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belabumbum

Pretty maternity loungewear

It’s no secret that labor isn’t exactly a walk in the park. It can be painful, long, drawn out and just plain not pretty. This is exactly why every pregnant woman should have some delicate clothes to wear in the hospital to help her feel as pretty as humanly possible — which may not be much, but it’s something. And something is far better than nothing. This is where Belabumbum comes into play. Belabumbum is a maternity loungewear and lingerie line that offers the prettiest attire for moms and moms-to-be. They have gorgeous lace detailing on their various robes, pajama sets, and nighties that are sure to make any woman feel her prettiest, at a time when she may be feeling anything but.

belabumbum box

belabumbum baby set

The Cutest Mom and Baby Sets

Belabumbum has the cutest mom and baby sets that match and would make for perfect photos while in the hospital! All of the clothing is so soft and perfect for that newborn baby skin. I’m loving the little bee print baby layette, with a matching nightie for mom. Belabumbum’s clothing is all gentle and great for recovery post-baby, plus it’s cute enough to wear in photos and to lounge around in at home. I can’t wait to wear it when I have my baby!

belabumbum robe and nightie

Clothing that works with the bump

I love all of the pretty and delicate clothing that Belabumbum has to offer, and love that they all fit over the bump, to accentuate it just so! I also am loving that it will work after baby, as well, once that bump is gone. I can see myself wearing this gorgeous lace robe for years to come, with or without a bump!

Which article of maternity loungewear is your favorite?
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      It is already spring and are you still trying to kick your fitness New Year resolution into high gear? One of the best ways to do this is freshening up your fitness gear! Here are 5 items that will inspire you to get on your yoga mat.

5 items to inspire you to get on your yoga mat1. Essential Gathered Legging

      Beyond Yoga’s best selling capri length legging now comes in 4 beautiful spring colors! Made with 90% Supplex and 10% Lycra, this quick-drying performance fabric is comfortable with lots of stretch. Gathering at the bottom of the leg adds a little fun to a traditional style yoga pant.

2. Mala Bead Necklaces Mala Beads is a is a string of 108 beads, traditionally Rudraksha seeds, of uniform size with one larger bead, called the “guru” bead. Malas are used for keeping count during mantra meditations, but you may have started seeing them worn more “off the mat.” Tiny Devotions is a company that creates mala beads and accessories to help inspire people to remember that yoga is a lifestyle in addition to a fitness practice.

3. yogitoes Mat Towels Ever taken a yoga class and wondered how to prevent slipping on puddles of sweat on your mat? yogitoes Mat Towels patented silicon nubs on the bottom of the towel that will grip your mat while the polyester/nylon towel absorbs your sweat preventing you from slipping. All towels are made from recycled plastic bottles and dyes are heavy metal/azo/lead free. Tap into your inner bohemian with the new Feeling Groovy Collection.

4. Reusable Glass Bottles Plastic resuable water bottles are a great way to be eco-friends, but reusable glass bottles are BPA-free and dishwasher safe! Lifefactory reusable glass bottles are wrapped in patent-pending, non-toxic silicone sleeves that are designed not only to look stylish but also to protect the bottles and help prevent them from breaking. You can get the bottles in 3 different sizes with a Flip Cap or a Classic Cap.

5. Earthing Sandals Studies have shown that maintaining a direct connection between your body and the Earth’s surface can be beneficial to your health. Juil shoes have copper grounding dots under each toe and heel drawing energy from the Earth to your feet. The soft leather uppers and linings on the shoes and sandals are vegetable dyed.

JuilSandalsSSM

Editors Review:

I have been wearing these sandals around Costa Rica and I am not sure if it’s the sandals, ocean breeze or my yoga class but these sandals do make me feel a little bit more grounded.  These are perfect sandal for traveling and give great support when walking, as oppose to those flip flops I throw on most days. I consider these my nicer sandals and wear them when I actually get out of my swimsuit and get dressed.  They are my “real shoes” while living the Pura Vida lifestyle!

Juil Sandals
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