Tasty and healthy dessert: Chia seed pudding

Hello Lovelies,

I have a quick recipe for you today. The weather is finally warming up and this quick dessert/snack is especially amazing for those hot, hazy Summer days. The base of this dessert only requires 3 ingredients and it takes 5 minutes to prepare.

Chia seeds are a good source of protein and fiber. They are also full of antioxidants and aid in weightless. Bottom line, they are super good for you. I have recently incorporated Chia seeds in my diet and this is my favorite way to have them.

Here’s what you will need:
3 Tbps of Chia seeds
1/2 cup of almond milk
1/2 tsp of vanilla

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The ingredients needed to make Chia pudding

Prepare:
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and refrigerate for at least one hour. The Chia seeds will plump and create a gelatinous, pudding like texture.

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Chia seed pudding base

Toppings:
So this is the best part because you can get all sort of creative with the toppings. My favorite ones are: fresh fruit, honey, granola, fruit jellies and chocolate/caramel syrups.

To assemble I put a desired amount of pudding in a cup and add the toppings.

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My toppings: blueberries and strawberries

I know this might look strange, but trust me, it is really tasty. It is not overly sweet, which I like, but it is very satisfying.

Lulu

Have you tried Chia seed pudding before? What are your favorite toppings? What other things do you use Chia seeds for?

The makeup recap: Seattle Edition

Hello Lovelies,

I’m not gonna lie. My makeup during our trip to Seattle was pretty simple. I tried to be conscious about that when I packed and I still managed to bring a few items that I didn’t use. I had this idea that maybe I could have time to do more involved eyeshadow looks,  but I also wanted to relax. In the end, the simple look won and I was perfectly happy with that!

The main thing that changed for my look in Seattle was the lip color. For my everyday work makeup I wear pretty neutral lip colors. So I decided I would dust off some of my bright lipsticks and take them for a walk around the city while I was on vacation. The color looks faded in some of the pictures but it it also a testament to the longevity of these lipsticks. Here’s a breakdown of the rest of my makeup.

I was going for a nice base and then alternated between black liner or a soft smokey eye.

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Simple every day look

Face:
Becca Blacklight Targeted Colour Corrector in Papaya
Too Faced Born This Way Foundation in Sand
Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Flawless Wear Concealer in Warm Medium
Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder
MAC Mineralize Skin Finish Natural in Give me Sun
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Diffused Heat

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Soft brown smokey eyes and NYX lipstick in Prague

Eyes:
Kat Von D Tattoo Eyeliner in Trooper
MAC Eye Khol in Power Surge & Teddy
Loreal False Lash Sculpt Mascara in Blackest Black

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Soft glam for an evening wedding (I added Ardell Demi Wispies Lashes too)

Lips:
NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in San Paulo and Prague
Dr. Lipp Original Balm for Lips

Lulu

Outfit Recap: Seattle Edition

Hello Lovelies!

I love basics and neutrals. When it comes to makeup I prefer to have a nice base, black eyeliner and neutral lip. Clothing? All I need is black and white. After becoming a mom I appreciate basics and neutrals even more. I don’t have time to fuss around with multiple eyeshadows and trying to match a mildly colorful outfit at 530am. So, I have been dabbing into the concept of a capsule wardrobe. The basic idea is that you give yourself a specified amount of clothing items to live with for one season, no more purchases until the next season comes around. Part of what you work on is a color palette you will work with. I am simplifying this A LOT but I hope to have a more detailed post for you soon.

Given that I am most happy with black and white it is not difficult for me to come up with a wardrobe. The best part is that this has mostly eliminated those days where I look at my closet and feel like I haven nothing to wear. I started working on this last Fall as a way to update my closet and finally get some much needed Spring clothing post pregnancy. The timing of our trip to Seattle was just perfect.

For my everyday items I decided to play around with gray – SO risky! I took advantage of the 40% discount at Gap and got me a few basics that can be dressed up or down. (NO, this is not a sponsored post.)  I added a couple of shirts in Navy Blue and got some bright pink flats that would match with everything I had purchased. Just in case I felt adventurous!

My favorite outfits are these two: These distressed black (straight leg) jeans with a comfy T-shirt and the pink flats. You can dress up this outfit by wearing heels and a nice jacket, or with ankle boots and a sexy top. The versatility is part of what makes my life easy and why I love outfits like this.

 

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Now, when it comes to special events I almost always go for black outfits. To me dressing in  black is so elegant and sexy at the same time. I picked this dress for my relatives wedding. I don’t love halter tops on me but this one is pretty comfortable. It is a super log dress and I like that because I don’t have to worry if I need to bend to talk to Alex or pick him up. There is a slit in the front that goes up above my knee – this adds a touch of sexiness to the dress.

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I used black stalkings and simple black heels, purely because I wanted to be 100% comfortable running around a toddler. I used some nice, strap heels and no stalking for a Holiday party back in December. I kept my hair pretty simple this time too as it ends up going up in a pony tail or messy bun eventually.

I hope you liked these outfits and some of the ideas behind having basics in your wardrobe.

Lulu

What are your favorite outfits?

Our trip to Emerald City

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Seattle Waterfront (view from our apartment)

Hello Lovelies!

If you follow me on Instagram (@braidedlulu) then you know that I was in Seattle this past weekend. It was a quick trip for a relative’s wedding but we had a great time! Seattle is special to me – the city has a vibe that I can’t quite identify. I am happy just walking around the city, taking in the sites and exploring the non-traditional touristy spots. The people are super friendly, too. For being a big city it still feel small, somehow. Bottom line, I love it there.

I know outsiders may think the rain can get boring, or is an inconvenience, but I find it to be very peaceful, nostalgic even. This trip was different as it was the first time we were with Alex and he was old enough to walk around. For that reason we focused on doing a few key things during the day that allowed Alex to have fun. I was worried the time change would be hard on him but he was up and running in no time. Good thing they have excellent coffee in this town.

So, let’s start at the beginning. We stayed at a fabulous apartment right by Pike Place Market courtesy of Airbnb and Katya (check her properties out!). This place had great views of the entire city and we were right in the heart of it all. A trip to Seattle is not complete without a visit to Pike Place Market. We were able to walk through the market early in the morning. Some of the vendors were working on setting up their shops – making flower arrangements, setting up the fresh catch of the day, or carefully laying out their handmade crafts. Alex was not amused but by the end of the trip he knew we were in the market when he saw the “big red letters”.

 

Where else did we go? The Sculpture Garden was about a mile away from our apartment so we walked there. The weather the first couple of days there was beautiful and it was nice to feel the breeze coming in from the bay. It’s a great place for kids to run around but lots of locals were also taking advantage of the weather. The Seattle Public Library has a really cool architecture and an amazing kids section. Your kids like science? Then the Pacific Science Center is the place to be. You can take a trip there on the monorail. The advantage is that the Space Needle is in the same area, along with other activities and shops. We also visited the waterfront, Golden Gardens Park and the Seattle Aquarium.

 

 

All-in-all, it was a great trip and we are excited for what our next visit will bring.

Lulu

Have you visited Seattle? What do you like to do while you’re there?

 

 

 

Easy Dinner: Oven Roasted Chicken and Corn Quesadillas

If you ask me, quesadillas are a great alternative for any kind of meal. I usually have flour tortillas in the fridge because they are also great snacks or quick fix meals. Alex is not feeling well today so The Hubs and I are fixing quesadillas for dinner. Tonight’s version? Roasted chicken and corn quesadillas. You want to learn how to make these? Then keep reading…

I started off with a store bought roasted chicken and some corn we had left-over from earlier this week. I removed all the chicken from the bone and cut it into small pieces. I placed the corn, the chicken and some cheese in a separate bowl to make things easy for the assembly phase.

Heat up a non-stick pan or griddle to medium high heat. Place the tortilla on the pan and let it warm up. It’s hard to specify time but you just want to warm this side of the tortilla to make it a little pliable. I then flip it so that the other side warms up. This is when I proceed to assemble the filling.

First I add cheese over the entire tortilla surface. This allows the cheese start melting while I add the other ingredients. Next I add the corn and chicken. Using a fork or spatula, I then bend half of the tortilla over the other. I like to leave the tortilla on the pan until you start to get a some charring spots but you can remove from the heat whenever you like.

To serve, I put the quesadillas on a plate and then garnish with salsa and sour cream. Sometime I will cut the quesadillas in half or thirds – you can do this however you like. This version of quesadillas was a little bit on the mild side in terms of flavor. This is when those toppings can really make a difference – in our case, hot salsa. (Side note, that cilantro sprig is from our herb garden.)

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Voila! Dinner is ready!

If I wanted to make a bigger meal I will add rice and beans. The great thing about quesadillas is that the amount of fillings and toppings you can use are up to your imagination.

Lulu

What is your favorite quesadilla filling?

My recent empties

For some reason it takes me a while to go through products. But I made a conscious decision to save up the items that I use up so I can show them to you all. It’s also a way to tell you about items that I may not normally mention. So, here is my latest collection of empties.

First of, the Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Complete Coverage Concealer. This is hands down one of my top 3 holy grail concealers. It really is lightweight with a super creamy consistency. The wand is perfect, too! I don’t have to reach in for more product because it give me the right amount for my entire face in wand-full goodness. It is also pretty good coverage, especially considering how light it feels on the skin. I guess the name is truly a snapshot of what you will get in one bottle. I use the color medium-dark warm.

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Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Weightless Concealer

I can’t live without this eye cream. I have tried others and I keep going back to this one every time. It is Bobbi Brown’s Hydrating Eye Cream. This is the sort of moisturizing cream that you put on and sinks on your skin to the point you don’t remember you have it on. However, when I wash my face at the end of the day, or in the morning, I can feel the hydration under my eyes is still there. Because it sets so nicely it is great to wear under makeup. It doesn’t cause my corrector or concealer to break apart as the day goes on. Love it!

Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel is one of those products I have used since my early teenage years. The gel is great for the hot, humid months/climates. It dries quickly and works great under makeup. There is also a lotion version of this that is really nice but I found it a bit too much for my combination skin.

Next up is Tarte’s Tarteguard 30 Sunscreen lotion. This is a really great sunscreen lotion. It’s really that simple. Great smell, dries matte and doesn’t break me out. That is why I like this product so much. Plus, how cute is this packaging. I have this mini one that I bought for taking on trips and have used up every single drop.

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Tarte’s Tarteguard

This next product is a recent purchase but I have used it every day since until it was all gone. (Me sad.) Murad’s Rapid Collagen Infusion has a creamy texture that blankets your skin and give your a plump and supple look. It’s one of those products where you notice the difference after a couple of weeks. It is supposed to be used like a serum, before your moisturizer. I was not sure how the texture of this “serum” would work as the first step in my skincare routine, but I was pleasantly surprised. It sinks into your skin but does not leave any greasiness on you skin. So you can continue with your routine, business as usual.

Last but not least is the Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes. These makeup remover wipes are great to take when you are travelling. They remove makeup with ease, even waterproof makeup. I also like to use them every day to remove my eyeliner and makeup prior to washing my face.

I guess most of these items are products I plan to repurchase – if I haven’t already done so.

Lulu

 

Have you tried any of these products? What are your recent empties?