Mio Bodycare….Fit Skin For Life!

 

Recently I came across this line called Mio Bodycare.  Mio began as MamaMio, a line for pregnant women and then evolved into Mio Bodycare.  Mio High Intensity Bodycare was created to give you Fit Skin For Life… smooth, firm, strong skin; glowing with health and happiness. Fit skin is your skin working to its maximum potential, ensuring you look and feel gorgeous, confident and happy in your birthday suit, no matter the birthday.  I have seen Mio featured in many magazines and have even read reviews that this skincare line is “life changing”.  Skincare, of course, is very important, however, I think we all are focused primarily on our face, therefore neglecting our body or placing it second.  But then again, who has time to spend lathering on body creams, etc.?  Mio makes it easy to take care of your body.  It is skincare made for women who want the best but demand multi-tasking, high quality, quick products.  After reading a bit about Mio’s products, I narrowed it down to a few that I think would be best for me and best for someone with a busy life.  The first product is The Activist.  The Activist is designed to firm, mega-moisturise and strengthen your skin.  The second would be Double Buff.  Double Buff “Instantly transform rough, dull skin into skin that’s superbly soft, smooth, radiant and dewy. Exfoliation is key to fit skin and this scrub will help you feel great in the buff!”.  Mio has two “trial or travel” kits that are great if you want to try out the products without making the commitment.  The first of the trial/travel packs is the “Strong is the New Skinny“.  Strong is the New Skinny includes The Activist, Double Buff & Future Proof.  The second is called Your Fit Skin.  This kit includes the essentials for an active woman:  Boob Tube, The Activist & Workout Wonder.  Mio formulas are made super clean with their evolved No Nasties policy.  Their products are totally free from parabens, petrolatum, synthetic fragrance and colourants, xenoestrogens, PEGs, glycols and pthalates. Each product has a list of ingredients that is comprehensible and transparent.  Check out Mio Bodycare and get Fit Skin For Life!

My Other Bag….Stylish Shopping Totes Are A Must!

Do you live in a city where plastic bags are banned and you must pay to get a paper shopping bag?  Are you just environmentally conscious and bring your own shopping bags?  Or do you just enjoy being super stylish at all times and would love a super cool shopping tote?  Whatever your reason, My Other Bag has you covered!  My Other Bag “is an ode to handbags women love, bags that are in the fabric of our culture and history. Every woman has her go to bag, her dream bag, her going out bag. My Other Bag is the perfect complement to these bags we love!”.  My Other Bags are produced from start to finish in the USA (to be specific, in Los Angeles, California)!  They are an environmentally conscious, socially savvy, and fashionably fun company and I just adore their high quality bags!  There are so many great takes on designer bags to choose from…from Chanel, Alexander McQueen to Louis Vuitton, Kate Spade and so much more!  There is a gorgeous, bag waiting for you right now at My Other Bag…..so what are you waiting for?  Happy Shopping!

Check out Rank & Style for all your shopping solutions!

 

Ok, I am going to admit it….I am a SHOPPER!  I love to shop and find myself spending countless evenings awake researching products only to be utterly confused and exhausted.  So during my search to compare beauty products, I came across a site called Rank & Style.  Rank & Style “simplifies shopping by bringing you unbiased, data-driven Top Ten lists of the best fashion and beauty products”.  Rank & Style is an awesome guide that narrows down a variety of products, accessories, lifestyle, etc. down to top 10 lists.  The lists are great- they include a brief description of the products, why they chose the particular product and where you can purchase it!  All the work is done for you!  Its fantastic and I have found myself purchasing many items from their lists and absolutely LOVE them.

So I am sure you are wondering how these top ten lists are derived.  Well, Rank & Style Top Ten lists are created utilizing an algorithm that methodically researches and aggregates data (user reviews, bestseller lists, editorial recommendations and expert product reviews) from the department stores, boutiques, fashion blogs and style magazines you trust.

Rank & Style makes it super easy to access their top 10 lists.  You can either visit the site or you can sign up for their newsletter here.  However you decide to access Rank & Style, I encourage you to check it out before buying your next products!  I think you will definitely find it a great resource!

 

Have you joined the Brave Girls Club yet?

As a mother, wife friend, small business owner and woman, I have found many hurdles that I constantly jump over each day.  Some are harder than others and lessons are constantly being learned.  There are days where I just feel as if I can’t share my thoughts because those around me are also going through their own issues.  One sleepless night, while I was looking for a bit of “inspiration”, I came across a site called Brave Girls Club.    The Brave Girls Club is “a worldwide community of women (of every age!) who want to live the best, happiest, most productive and fabulously brave life they can possibly live…and that means something different to every single one of us”.  Brave Girls Club is a place where we can feel free to be ourselves, find peace on stressful days and learn to be brave.  What I love most about the Brave Girls Club is that it is a haven to just be you.  It is a community of women just like us who are looking for some support, inspiration, direction and encouragement. 

The Brave Girls Club features a wonderful blog, community, online classes (that are reasonable and AMAZING!) but what has really struck me is their daily emails called “a little bird told me- the daily truth“.  I look forward to these emails each day.  They are inspiring and heartfelt and they seem to come just at the right time.  And for those of you with girls, there is a daily truth email for girls and teens called “the little butterfly”. 

I can’t say enough about this site and how many times it has offered me encouragement and inspiration.  I can only tell you to check it out here and let us know what you think!  I think you will definitely delight in it!

 

 

 

 

A Taste of Heaven in a Cup!

 

I am obsessed with tea!  While I have tried a plethora of different teas, I have really fallen in love with both black and green (primarily flavored green) teas.  My love affair with tea started many years ago as a young adult.  I just could not get into the whole coffee frenzy but still enjoyed a warm cup of something in the morning.  I was introduced to Harney & Sons tea when I was 19 years old and on vacation in Boston.  It was the beginning of my love affair with tea, but eventually our relationship grew cold.  I then fell in love with and have consistently loved Mariage Freres tea.  The Mariage family established the principles that subsequently developed into a veritable French Art of Tea.  A cup of Mariage’s Yunnan Imperial or French Breakfast was all I needed to kick start a lovely day.  But over the years, Mariage Freres tea has become hard and hard to find in the States and unfortunately for me, travel to France by either myself, friends or family is not often enough to maintain a healthy supply of these coveted leafs!

So I began the journey of finding the perfect cup of tea, one that would stand up to (but of course, never replace) my beloved Mariage but was available in the States.  I tried dozens of different tea brands, probably more than my bank account allowed at times, but similar to coffee, there is nothing like the perfect cup of tea in the morning to set the tone for my day!  I stumbled across DAVIDsTea about 2 months ago and it was LOVE at first sight.  For the first time in my life I was willing to put Mariage aside and open my arms to a new, available love!

DAVIDsTea is a Canadian based company that has opened tea stores throughout the USA and lucky me, there are THREE stores in San Francisco, CA.  DAVIDsTea features over 150 different types of teas from exclusive blends & flavors to traditional teas and exotic ones.  Walking into a DAVIDsTea shop is an experience!  It looks like heaven with its white decor and teal accents.  The tea is stored in large metal bins that are labeled and organized according to their leaf, style and caffeine.  There are so many teas one can become overwhelmed so it is best to walk in there with some idea of what you are looking for and then be prepared to purchase something you never even knew existed.  The great thing about DAVIDsTea is that you don’t have to commit to buying a ton of tea…..you can buy a sample bag of 2oz or tins of 4ozs up.  I found it really helpful to buy the sample bags, try them at home and then decide which ones I really wanted to commit to.

While it is really hard to narrow down favorites at DAVIDsTea, I have found myself craving a few!  My current black tea favorites are:  Brazillionaire, Lapsang Souchsong Star, Red Velvet Cake (OMG!), Salted Carmel & Cream of Earl Grey.  My favorite green teas are:  Toasted Walnut, Movie Night & Sweet Ginger.  And to round up the rest, my favorite herbals and rooibos are:  Mother’s Little Helper (great for kids too!), Birthday Cake (its out of this world), Creme Caramel & Super Ginger.

If you can’t find a store near you, visit their online store here:  DAVIDsTea!  I have no doubt you’ll become a tea freak like me!

 

 

Happy New Year! 2013!!!


Hey Kitsel Friends!  Let’s Kibitz

 Happy New Year!

Another year has gone by and as I always seem to do when the holiday dust settles, I am in awe of how fast time has flown by!  I began 2012 with a 6 year old son and left it with a 7 year old!  Some days I would like to stop the clock and conversely, on others, I would like to hit the fast forward button!  I have watched my son evolve from a little kindergartner to a big first-grader, one who even knows how to read & spell!  This tidbit was discovered when I was spelling that my son was in a M-O-O-D to my Mother and he turned and said “I am NOT in a MOOD Mommy!”.  Wow- that was quiet the development in our home!  There have been so many more amazing moments that I have discovered with my now 7 year old!  We are playing family board games like Sorry, Life and Monopoly and while it does take a bit of patience at times, it is so fun and really brings us together.  

As a working mom, I am still trying to figure out the work-life balance.  Managing being a “present” mom has been foremost on my mind as I found that technology has made working & playing from everywhere a bit too convenient!  I am reminded constantly of the importance of putting my iPad or iPhone down during conversations and outings with my son!  Its the one nagging I can really appreciate from him although he, too, has learned to covet the ‘ole iPad! 

One of the questions I am constantly asked during this time of year is what new year resolutions I have made.  It’s a question that up until recently I was able to answer with ease….I would whip out a list I inevitably had on my person and read it off!  However, I discovered last year, around mid-year, that I did not have to wait until the “new year” to make resolutions.  That every day was a new day and a fresh start.  So with this in mind, I have embarked on a new tradition and that is to not make resolutions.  Instead I am setting out to live my life with the idea of making each day count and on those days I fall short, to not beat myself up, but begin anew the next morning.  Not having resolutions does not mean that I don’t have goals, but it means that my goals are a lifestyle as opposed to a new beginning.  I am excited to see the progress of my goals and am interested in seeing where I land at this time next year!

Stay Tuned….

 

SB

 

Its a Miracle…..Dior Hydra Life BB Crème

I don’t know about you but I have not succumbed to the motherhood doldrums.  You know what I am talking about when life gets too overwhelming and you find yourself unshowered, hair matted and in the same clothes you wore the day before or was it the day before that????  While admittedly I do have many days such as this, I try to take care of myself, and at least look presentable when the UPS delivery guy arrives.  LOL.  In all honesty, it isn’t so bad.  I have spent much money on trying to perfect the 5 minute beauty routine with products that work overtime and make me look lovely….well  at least a bit less disheveled than I feel inside sometimes. 

I came across Dior Hydra Life BB Creme at Sephora last week and immediately went home to do the research.  While it is a bit pricey (Sephora sells it for $56) it is worth every penny.  If you are not familiar with BB Creme’s in general, read on….  BB Creme’s are inspired by cutting-edge Asian beauty rituals.  They are a single-step cream to immediately balance the skin, correct the complexion, and protect its youthful appearance. Developed in collaboration with Dior Makeup Artists, HydraLife BB Crème combines the moisturizing and protective powers of a skincare product with the immediate complexion-enhancing and even-toning properties of a foundation. The complexion is left moisturized, smooth, and velvety soft.   This product even boasts SPF 30 which provides active defense against environmental stress and broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection.

This creme is a miracle creme.  It has replaced my sunscreen, primer, foundation and even concealer and has saved me significant time and money!  The best part of this is it goes on so natural that people will never know you are wearing any makeup at all.  And for all you skeptics who need a heavier foundation to “cover” up, don’t hesitate to try this.  It works for most skin and all ages. 

It comes in one color, which seems to flatter most.  If you are interested in the product but aren’t ready to make a commitment, ask your friendly Sephora consultant for a sample, and try it out.  I know you will hooked! 

 

A Healthier, Quick Version of Chicken Parmigiano! Kid APPROVED!!!

 

One of the questions I am asked frequently is how do I balance being a mom, wife and work full-time?  In all honesty, I have to say that it is very difficult and I find myself juggling and wishing for more hours each and every day.  I have learned to prioritize and compromise but there is one thing that I absolutely have not been able to compromise on and that is dinner as a family.  Each night my family strives to eat dinner together.  While I would be lying if I said it was easy or that it happened every night, but for the most part, you can find my family sitting down together for a meal.  By the time we get there, our goal is to eat as fast as we can so that we can all get in bed and watch our favorite tv shows together (which usually consist of some form of Food Network show….Chopped, Restaurant Impossible, etc….).  But while our time at the dinner table is brief, we try our best to make the most of it and really focus on each other.  We always discuss the rose and thorn of our day- we discuss the positives (the roses) and the negatives (the thorns) and this helps ground us into the reality that is our little family. 

Since we are a health conscious family, who is looking for good, healthy food, FAST, I am always on the look out for new recipes that are healthy, quick and yummy.  My family loves comfort food- I have to say that we all share a passion for the same type of foods:  pasta, cheesy-gooey foods such as pizza and all the other wonderful comfort foods that warm our heart and soul.  But unfortunately, these same comfort foods stick to our ribs, so I am always trying to find new adaptions of old favorites.  One of our all-time faves is Grilled Chicken Parmigiano!  This recipe was adapted by Rocco DiSpirito in his Now Eat This!  book!  This book has become one of my faves, and since its release, he has adapted many other comfort food/heavy recipes in subsequent books!  The best part?  I have his books on my iPad so that I can get my grocery list, recipe and calorie count on ONE device….ahhhh, the joys of technology.  I digress….

In any case, I wanted to share one of my family faves with you.  Its Grilled Chicken Parmigiano….the healthier, quick version.  We pair it with shirataki noodles (the low-carb, low calorie, miracle noodle!).  My 6 year old son LOVES it and doesn’t even miss the fat or the regular pasta!  Here ya go….enjoy!

Servings: Serves 4

Ingredients
  • Nonstick olive oil cooking spray
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (4 ounces each) trimmed of all fat, pounded thin
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Salt
  • 2 cups Rocco’s How Low Can You Go Low-Fat (page 206) Marinara Sauce , or store-bought low-fat marinara sauce
  • 1 cup drained canned whole plum tomatoes , roughly chopped
  • 1 cup roughly chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup shredded reduced-fat mozzarella cheese , such as Weight Watchers
  • 1 1/2 ounces (about 6 Tbsp.) grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat panko breadcrumbs , such as Ian’s All-Natural
Directions
Preheat the oven to 400°. Lightly spray a 9×13-inch glass baking dish with olive oil spray and set it aside. Heat a grill or grill pan over high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste. When the grill is hot, spray the chicken lightly with olive oil spray. Grill until just cooked through, about 1 1/2 minutes per side. Spread a little less than half of the marinara sauce over the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Lay the grilled chicken breasts on top of the sauce. Spoon the remaining marinara sauce over the chicken; scatter the chopped tomatoes over the top. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the chopped basil, the mozzarella, and the Parmigiano Reggiano. Bake the chicken until the cheese has melted and is beginning to brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle the panko and remaining basil on top, and serve.
Nutritional Information
Before: 49g fat, 1,090 calories
After: 9.3g fat, 332 calories 39g protein, 20g carbohydrates, 91mg cholesterol, 3g fiber, 767mg sodium

post by:  SBR

 

 

the tooth fairy! guest blog post from a father’s point of view

Over a year ago, when my son was only five years old, he fell down and had to have one of his molar’s extracted because he cracked the tooth to the root. Ouch! I know… At the time, the oral surgeon said,”Don’t worry Dad, we put him out so he won’t remember a thing”. However, I watched the entire procedure, unassisted by any laughing gas or narcotics, and will never forget it!  That night our boy got his first visit from the tooth fairy. Because I felt so bad about the experience (that my son did not remember), I convinced the tooth fairy to give him $20. Today my six and a half year old son lost his two front teeth. These two did not go on their own accord either and needed to be pulled at the dentists office, lest he develop a second row of teeth like a shark. I was not there to witness the procedure this time, but at six and half, without being put under, it was no less traumatic for both my son and wife who watched this time. So once again the tooth fairy is paying a visit and our son is raking in the dough!

According to Wikipedia the origin of the tooth fairy dates a long way back to European and Norse roots. “In early Europe, it was a tradition to bury baby teeth that fell out. When a child’s sixth tooth falls out, it is a custom for parents to slip a gift or money from the tooth fairy under the child’s pillow, but to leave the tooth as a reward. Some parents also leave trails of glitter on the floor, representing fairy dust. In northern Europe, there was also a tradition of tann-fé or tooth fee, which was paid when a child lost their first tooth. This tradition is recorded in writings as early as the Eddas, which are the earliest written record of Norse and Northern European traditions. The reward left varies by country, the family’s economic status, amounts the child’s peers report receiving and other factors. A 2011 study found that American children receive $2.60 per tooth on average.”

I guess with the cost of inflation and a parents trauma the tooth fairy has increased her reward nearly tenfold in my house. One thing I can tell you for sure is that my son is proud to be missing his teeth and is smiling from ear to ear and showing off the empty spaces where baby teeth used to dwell. To get your child smiling check out our adorable Made You Smile t-shirt from Toobydoo and our fun Zoochini hooded towels, this is my favorite for a lost tooth. While this milestone is a right of passage for any child it is also a right of passage for any parent.

by david rosenberg

 

Have You Met Pinterest Yet?

What’s Pinterest?

Pinterest is the latest social craze to hit the internet and we must say, we are digging it. 

So what is Pinterest?  Pinterest is a pinboard-style social photo sharing website that allows users to create and manage theme-based image collections such as events, interests, hobbies, and more. Users can browse other pinboards for inspiration, ‘re-pin’ images to their own collections or ‘like’ photos. Pinterest’s mission is to “connect everyone in the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting” via a global platform of inspiration and idea sharing.  Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes, and our personal favorite, follow what’s new on Kitsel!  . Best of all, you can browse pinboards created by other people. Browsing pinboards is a fun way to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests. 

While Pinterest is by invite only, I suspect that the “invitation” system will fall by the waist-side soon and all will be able to “join” freely.  I am not sure why the invitation system is in place, virtually everyone I know who has applied has been accepted and LOVES it! 

So check Pinterest out, and make sure you follow Kitsel for all your baby, toddler, kid & all thing Mommy needs!  Happy Pinning!