Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap

Image Source: http://www.kerismith.com/

Image Source: http://ideasandthings.tumblr.com/
Image Source: http://shetakesflight.tumblr.com/

Image Source: unknown
Image Source: http://www.inspiredtoshare.com/


Image Source: Unknown
All in honor of leap year!  Some pretty inspiring stuff.

I love the little girl on the trampoline.  That was me about 15 years ago.

Happy leap year!

xoxoxo,

L.A.

P.S. Do you know any leap year birthday babies?!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Auntie Awesome Ideas


Image Source: http://www.betsymariephotography.com/
My sister will be nearly 21 weeks pregnant when she is here next week, meaning she will have just learned the sex of Baby Pride!

I am thinking that while she and Mark are here we should do a gender reveal shoot.  Isn't the shot above so sweet?!  I think its such a fun way to announce the gender to the world (if you choose to do so).  What do you think?! 

Did you choose to learn the sex of your baby, if you have one?  Do you think you will?  Will you learn but keep it a secret?!  So many options!

I can't wait for my sssseeester to get here!

xoxoxox,

L.A.

P.S.

Image Source: The Berry
As soon as I learn that Baby Pride is in fact, a boy, I am so buying this.  Auntie Awesome strikes again.

Monday, February 27, 2012

What I Learned This Weekend

Image Source: West Elm
Happy Monday, lovelies!

I have to admit that my Monday has started off with a bang! I added a little too much sugar to my coffee this morning, which led to a super pumped up Core Fusion class @ 6:45am, which led to massive amounts of endorphins...so I am ready for this week, to say the least!  Hopefully some of my energy will rub off in you, too!

The first thing I learned this weekend is that the BEST way to get your husband / wife / significant other to agree to buy something new for your home is to give away what was already there!

I arranged a pick up for our old sofa on Friday evening and no more than two hours after our house was sofa-less, did Mr. Arotin agree to let me purchase the above day bed as our new sofa! Sneaky, yet very effective trick.  We are really excited about the day bed because it is big and cozy for movie watching, will allow for storage underneath (great for small spaces), will serve as an extra bed for guests (another small space plus) AND with a wood frame, its kitty scratch proof!

Image Source: Shoppingblog and Popsugar
The second thing I learned this weekend is that Gwyneth Paltrow really does nail it every time with her fashion choices for the Oscars.  I am SO in love with this chic look from Tom Ford and am obsessed with her slick hair and sparkly jewelry, finishing the look.  Mr. Arotin's favorite look was Penelope Cruz in Armani Prive.  He has good taste!

Image Source: http: NYmag
Lastly (and most excitingly!), I learned that I can teach Core Fusion Cardio! Yippie!

I had my Core Fusion Cardio mock class on Saturday and am all set to teach my first official class on Tuesday, March 6th @ 4pm!  If you are interested in a heart-pumping 45 minute non-stop cardio experience, come sweat with me!

I wish you all an amazing week!

xoxox,

L.A.

P.S. My sister is coming in two weeks and we will be doing a little maternity shoot and a little baby shopping while she is here! I am so excited!!!

Friday, February 24, 2012

It's Friday, I'm In Love .....With

Image Source: Google Images

If you haven't seen this movie (and you love Ernest Hemingway, Paris, Woody Allen, Paris, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Paris, all things 1920s, Paris, a good message, and Paris)...RUN RENT IT NOW!

I am so obsessed with the concept, the writing, the costumes. LOVE LOVE LOVE.

My wanderlust is back and its serious.

Image Source: Google Images
 ...going to Buenos Aires for New Years!!!

This picture is going to be Chris and I (tangoing in the streets of Buenos Aires) in t-minus 9 months-ish.  I can't wait!!!!!

We are going to take tango lessons and an immersion Spanish class (gotta re-up those lengua skills) before we go. I also need to find the PERFECT tango shoes!!!

I am super open and excited for any and all recommendations you lovelies have as far as where we should go, what we should see, and MOST importantly...what and where we should eat and drink!!!

P.S. This blog is cool!

Image Source: http://www.scarves.net/

I love quotes and I love scarves!!! Double score!

Image Source: babaloud.com
...this quote.

I so believe in wandering.  Some of the best expierences of my life have happened while wandering alone.  Embrace your wanderlust.  Challenege yourself to do something, go somewhere for no reason other than you want too!  I promise, you won't be disappointed.

Happy weekend, lovelies!

Mr. Arotin is hosting a poker night for the boys tonight and we plan to watch the Oscars on Sunday.  This is the ballot we will use to keep score!  Other than that, we will be laying low, working on a few projects, and enjoying each other!

What are your plans?  Are you watching the Oscars?  Going to an Oscar party?

xoxoxo,

L.A.



Thursday, February 23, 2012

Vintage Summer Chic

Vintage Summer Chic

Glasses: Elizabeth and James, Purse: Anya Hindmarch, Shoes: Marc by Marc Jacobs, Dress: Axparis, Earrings: Vintage Chanel, Braclet: The Pearl Outlet

Lovelies!

I may be late to the party on this one, but I just discoverd Polyvore!  HOLY AMAZING way to create looks you love for both fashion and interiors.

I am going to a bridal shower in April and have been tossing and turning over what to pair with a vintage blue polka dot dress (very similar to the one above) that I plan to wear.  I created this look on Polyvore and am now so inspried!

Have you heard of Polyvore?  Do you love it?!  What do you think about this polka dot look?!

xoxoxox,

L.A.

P.S. This may become a huge, time suck obsession.  Just sayin....

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Our Journal

Mr. Arotin and I spent President's Day on an afternoon date!  I am usually so busy teaching that we rarely get to have afternoon dates over the weekend.  We spent the afternoon shopping, stopped at one of our favorite pubs, and picked up a journal. 

We plan to use this journal as a way to share sweet love notes, things we would like to do together (some blush-worthy, some silly, some fun), most importantly, as a creative way to encourage and reaffirm our love for one another.

Being married nearly a year (YIPPIE!) still pins us in the newlywed department, but I think its always a good idea to shake things up and be creative with love to keep it fresh.  Don't you agree?!

Chris has already made his first entry into the journal.  I can't wait to make mine!

In what creative ways do you keep your love fresh?  Do you like the journal idea?!

Happy Wednesday!

xoxox,

L.A.

P.S. I found journal inspiration here!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Potato Gnocchi

Mr. Arotin often orders whatever gnocchi is available on the menu when we are out at Italian restaurants.  Until recently, I never understood why.  Potato pasta just always seemed like it would be sorta bland to me, in comparison to sun-dried tomato, spinach, or other pasta possibilities I could order.

A few months ago, he decided to try to make gnocchi at home.  I was forced to try it (since he put so much work into dinner) and guess what?! It's yummy!  Not too time consuming either, from start to finish it takes about 1.5 - 2 hours.  Not bad for delicious homemade pasta!

We follow this recipe to make our gnocchi.

 My favorite part of the gnocchi-making process is playing with the dough!

Eating the finished product is pretty fun too!

We topped our gnocchi with Mr. Arotin's Godfather Sauce and paired it with a Cass Winey Rockin One Blanc blend of Viognier, Marsanne and Rousanne.  The Rockin One Blanc is big enough for red wine lovers and perfect with pasta. (We joined Cass on our trip to Paso Robles for Chris's 30th birthday! Such a fun winery!!)

xoxoxo,

L.A.

Monday, February 20, 2012

What I Learned This Weekend

Happy President's Day!  I hope you all are home enjoying another day of rest and fun!

I am back to work today, but I had a fun-tastic weekend filled with some of my favorite things! Lululemon teaching, Bloody Mary's, and fooood!!

This weekend, I learned that I love pretty much EVERY Pioneer Woman recipe.

My latest creation was her Cowboy Calzone.  Rotel + Soy Chorizo (substitution for her suggested ground beef and breakfast sausage) + 3 types of cheese = delicious!!

Note / FYI: By using soy instead of all the fatty meat, I reduced the calories in this recipe.  Score!!

I also learned that I am pretty much obsessed with every single classic convertible I lay my eyes on.  I saw this beauty in the bank parking lot on Friday.  Also!  I used the Nashville filter on Instagram to add to the vintage feel of this shot. Just FYI!

My most favorite weekend discovery is that Mr. Arotin can make a meannnnnnn and delicious beer!  This picture is of the first brew of Arotin IPA.  Just the right amount of hops.  Great job, honey!!

He used a Brooklyn Brew Shop beer making kit combined with beer class knowledge to do this work.

Stayed tuned for more home brew posts because ladies and gentlemen, I believe we have a true brewmaster in the making.

Have a great week!

xoxoxo,

L.A.

Friday, February 17, 2012

It's Friday, I'm In Love...With....

Image Source: vi.sualize.us
......courage.


Happy Friday, lovelies.

I thought that rather than obsessing over fashion, interiors, party planning, or food, today I would share my love for being real.

Living every single day on this planet takes courage.

For some, its having the courage to fight an illness or disease everyday, to live with a disability, to get out of a dying relationship, to change jobs, to go back to school, to cross the ocean on an airplane (heck, maybe to get on an airplane).

I am so inspired by the courage I see around me everyday.

Here's a good courage quote that I am carrying with me this weekend:

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Anais Nin

I wish you all a Friday, weekend, and lifetime of the courage you need to create and recreate yourselves!

xoxoxox,

L.A.



Thursday, February 16, 2012

Money Lovin' Discount!

Image Source: Learnvest
Today's discount is from Learnvest, probably the COOLEST personal finance and lifestyle website for women, ever! The mission of the company is "to empower women everywhere to take control of their personal finances so that they can afford their dreams."  Now, isn't this a company you want to spend a little more time with?!  I thought so!

There are three things I want to highlight about Learnvest before we get to the discount!

1) You can become a member of Leanvest for free! Think access to budgeting tools, a well-written and clever daily email tip - a great start on the journey towards a well financially-planned life!

2) With tax season upon us, you should totally check out their Ace Your Taxes Bootcamp.  It comes free with your free membership and will help you complete your taxes (sans-headache) in five days! That's what I call....WINNING!!! (They also have a bunch of other super fun bootcamps that come as part of your free membership - Cut Your Costs, Baby on Board, and Get out of Debt, to name a few!)

3) Here comes the discount part!

Learnvest if offering Love, L.A. reader's a 15% discount on the following three paid plans. (These are plans that actually assign you a personal financial planner to help you on your money-lovin' way!  Don't you feel fancy already?!!)

Here is a little bit about the new plans:

Level 1 is the Budgeting Plan. This helps members set up a realistic budget and make tangible progress on their individual financial situations.

Level 2 is the Core Financial Plan. This plan is designed to help members establish a strong financial foundation. Members receive a custom financial plan that outlines their top priorities and how to achieve them.

Level 3 is the Complete Financial Plan. This plan is for members looking to take charge of their financial goals and really plan for the next five years.

Every paid plan also includes access to interactive online courses to help you learn in-depth financial topics like the fundamentals of investing and retiring in style!!

Now that you are all super pumped to run right over to become a Learnvest member, take this discount code with you for use at checkout: LVPLAN_SKP.

xoxoxoxox,

L.A.

P.S. Big thanks to Stephany Kirkpatrick over at Learnvest for offering this awesome discount! xoxoxo

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Spring Obsessions

Image Source: Polyvore


Image Source: Madewell

Image Source: unknown

Image Source: Essie
Image Source: Warehouse jumpers

Classic earrings (I also love these). Statement, chic flats. Mint green. Pretty pink (what is wrong with me - I have NEVER liked pink!). Stripes. 

Hurry, Spring!  My closet is calling!!!

xoxox,

L.A.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Lovely Love Story

Image Source: http://www.edwardmonkton.com/

This is my favorite love story of all time. The message is simple, clear and classic. 

Chris and I love it so much that we had two dear friends read it during our wedding.

I thought in honor of Valentine's Day (my very first as a wife!), I would share it with all of you.

A Lovely Love Story

The fierce dinosaur was trapped inside his cage of ice.  Although it was cold, he was happy in there.  It was, after all, his cage.

Then along came the lovely other dinosaur.

The lovely other dinosaur melted the dinosaur's cage with kind words and loving thoughts.

I like this dinosaur, thought the lovely other dinosaur.  Although he is fierce he is also tender and he is funny.  He is also quite clever, though I will not tell him this for now.

I like this lovely other dinosaur, thought the dinosaur.  She is beautiful and she is different and she smells so nice.  She is also a free spirit which is a quality I much admire in a dinosaur.

But he can be so distant and peculiar at times, thought the lovely other dinosaur.  He is also overly fond of things.  Are all dinosaurs overly fond of things?

But her mind skips from here to there so quickly, thought the dinosaur.  She is also uncommonly keen on shopping.  Are all lovely other dinosaurs so uncommonly keen on shopping?

I will forgive his peculiarity and his concern for things, thought the lovely other dinosaur.  For they are what make him a richly charactered individual.

I will forgive her skipping mind and her fondness for shopping, thought the dinosaur.  For she fills our life with beautiful thoughts and wonderful surprises.  Besides, I am not unkeen on shopping either.

Now the dinosaur and the lovely other dinosaur are old.  Look at them.

Together they stand on the hill telling each other stories and feeling the warmth of the sun on their backs.

And that, my friends, is how it is with LOVE.

Let us all be dinosaurs and lovely other dinosaurs together.

For the sun is warm and the world is a beautiful place.

The End.

You can see a video of it here!

Happy Valentine's Day!

xoxoxoxox,

L.A.

P.S. I teared up while writing that!  Being married to my best friend makes every day Valentine's Day. :)  Love you, Mr. Arotin.

Monday, February 13, 2012

What I Learned This Weekend

Happy Monday, lovelies!

First on the list of fun things I learned this weekend is that I am super ready for spring and my fashion sense shows it! While strolling through Wasteland yesterday, the only dresses I picked up were floral, patterned, and brightly colored.  SUPER unusual for me (I am a solids girl) and proof that I am craving delicious spring colors and patterns. 

Next, I learned that I will never take sun and palm trees in February for granted.  Never.

One of the most fun / delicious things I learned is that chocolate infused cheese is AMAZING.  Run buy some now!!

Last on my list is simple.  I learned that drinking coffee from a sentimental cup makes the drinking experience that much better. Good job, Starbucks! P.S. Have you tried their new Blonde Roast?!  It may very well be my favorite roast of all time. No lie.

What are your Vday plans this week?!  Big dinners?  Date night?  Staying in and dancing in the living room like Mr. Arotin and I plan to do?!

xoxoxox,

L.A.

Friday, February 10, 2012

It's Friday, I'm In Love....With....





....my gutter garden!!

Happy Friday, lovelies!

Isn't this gutter garden Mr. Arotin built for me super cool?!  (Isn't he the sweetest?!!!)

It was super easy to make, too!

Supplies needed:
1 gutter cut to fit the size of the window you want it to live in front of
2 gutter end pieces
A drill
Screws
Herbs or plants

After picking up the supplies, all you have to do is drill holes throughout the gutter to let the water drain, as well as affix the gutter to the window.  Once that is all set, its green thumb time for planting! Done!

I added little tongue dispensers to help me remember which herbs are which!

Big plans this weekend, lovelies?

I hope you enjoy good food with those you love and maybe complete a project or two!

xoxoxox,

L.A.


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Valentine's Day Gift Inspiration

Image Source: Soaptopia
Mr. Arotin and I have opted to pass on Valentine's Day gift giving this year. We have a few big events coming up (his sister is getting married in June, we are becoming Aunt and Uncle AWESOME in July, and we are planning a trip to Argentina to ring in 2013!!), so we have opted to save the money on gifts for the other fun things we have going on.

However, this does not mean that I can't day dream about Valentine's Day gifts I would like to receive, right?!  And, maybe give you a little inspiration too! 

First on my gift wish list is this awesome soap, scrub, and lotion box from Soaptopia.  Is there anything more luscious and awesome than a hot soak with the one you love on Valentine's Day?  I don't think so!  AND! Soaptopia is Junk FREE, meaning their products aren't made from car engines or anything else toxic.  Double score.

Image Source: Tiffany & Co

I have been coveting this charm for my charm bracelet for literally 2 or 3 years.  Its so darling and sweet. Don't you think?!  Can't knock a girl for dreaming of jewelry for VDay.

Image Source: Kate Spade

This sun hat = I. DIE.

Black and white striped, check. Bow, check. Wrinkle-causing-sun-blocker, check.  Adorable and chic vintage look, check.  Winnnnnning! On so many levels.

I also love these (can you guess why?!) and this.

Image Source: Kate's Paperie
Give a girl the right card and she will give you her heart.  Done and done.

Image Source: Justin Vineyards & Wines
Just had to throw in a weekend getaway to JustINN at Justin Vineyards and Wines.  Check it out!!

Image Source: Hanky Panky
Retro fitted lace nightie in red from Hanky Panky, eeeeeeeekkk!!! This is lingerie that hugs her just how he likes and makes her feel like 1,000,000 bucks, too!

Image Source: Toms
Leopard printed ballet flats from Toms!  I finally have a reason to buy one and give one and not compromise my style! Boom!

Happy Wednesday!

xoxoxox,

L.A.
P.S. Mr. Arotin, if you read this, you are welcome to break our no gifting pact and buy anything off of this list!  Just saying!! :)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Becoming Auntie Awesome!

Lovelies, I have some SUPER exciting news to share with you today! Did you guess already?!  I am going to be an Aunt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My little sister, who you may remember from my post about her AWESOME wedding last week, is going to be a mommy! Wowzers!  The little guy or gal is due in July.  P.S. I think he is a boy, but Toni and Mark don't find out for another month.

If I can be totally honest, I never really got the whole baby excitement thing.  Like, why do people ooohhhh and ahhhhhh about little hairless, crying, pooping machines?!  I mean, really?  But, now that I am going to be the aunt of one of those hairless, crying, pooping machines, I totally get it!  There is something so special and magical about the creation of human life. And, I will admit, I am pumped to squeeze little baby cheeks and get baby hugs.


Although I am not creating a new series dedicated to the baby (that might be super weird crazy aunt bonkers obsessive a little over the top), I will be posting from time to time about baby stuff that I find cool!

To start, I bought my little nephew (let's just say he's a boy until we know for sure!) Sophie the Giraffe for Valentine's Day.  I mean, I know he won't get to enjoy it until next Valentine's Day, but its the thought that counts right?  Not the timing?

Anyway, apparently this Giraffe is like the bee's knees of baby stuff - awesome for teething purposes, developing sensory skills, (something about the spots, scent, taste and squeaky sound make it great) and a first friend for a baby!  Also, Toni is designing the nursery in a Where The Wild Things Are theme, so Sophie will fit right in.  I will most definitely be posting on the development of the nursery.  Isn't that such a fun idea?!!

Have you heard of Sophie the Giraffe?  Thoughts about it?  Are you an Aunt?  Is it awesome?!!

I am so excited I can't stand it!

xoxoxox,

Auntie Awesome

P.S. Chris and I are going to be called Aunt and Uncle Awesome.
P.S.S. I bought this bib already and I'm obsessing over this.

Monday, February 6, 2012

What I Learned This Weekend

Image Source: Lululemon

Happy Monday, lovelies!

This weekend I taught @ Exhale and Lululemon in Santa Monica and trained a ton!  I will be certified to teach Core Fusion Cardio soon! Yippie.  Needless to say, I didn't learn too much outside of teaching this weekend.

One thing I did learn after teaching at Lululemon on Sunday is that I am head over heels obsessed with this Tea Lounge Pullover. When I decide to buy one, I think I will have to buy five because I will wear it every single day.

I am also completely in love with these tanks.  I am on my way to having one in every color.  They are so versatile.  I wear them to teach, under sweaters at work, even under sheer tops to play!


Image Source: http://www.designsponge.com/

The other thing I learned this weekend is that sleeping is amazing.  I obviously already knew it was amazing, but I've been so busy lately that finally reacquainting with sleep felt like a new experience!

This is a pretty interesting article about sleep and its benefits.

Are you guys noticing that the sun is staying out longer these days?!  I love it!! 

Any big plans for Valentine's day this Saturday?  I think Chris and I are staying in to make dinner together and dance in the living room.  I think I might put on a fancy dress and make him wear a suit just for fun!! :)

xoxox,

L.A.

P.S. We finally agreed on a paint color for our kitchen window trim.  As soon as that is done, I will post pictures! 

Friday, February 3, 2012

It's Friday, I'm In Love...With...



Image Source: unknown
.....this life mantra.

I mean, if that isn't truth, I don't know what truth is.


Image Source: SmittenKitchen
...asparagus, goat cheese and lemon pasta.

Holy yummy looking!  Smitten Kitchen does it again.  This will definitely be on my menu for this weekend.

Image Source: nailcrazy.tumblr.com
...Pamplona Purple.

A nail polish that references both my favorite country and color in the world is a MUST HAVE in my book. Plus, I am so NOT into pink, so purple is my perfect Valentine's Day manicure color!  Whoop! Done and done.

Image Source: unknown
....this happy quote!

 
This is an everyday goal of mine.  There is nothing quite like smiling so big at a grumpy-looking stranger that you see them get a little giddy up in their step and put a smile on too!

Image Source: Viva Terra
....this succulent wreath!!

 
I have been trying to find the perfect lingering-winter-almost-spring wreath.  Not too bright, not to dark.  Here it is. 

 
Happy Friday, lovelies!

I woke up this morning and repeated in my head twice, "today will be a good day."  It's already looking that way!  Isn't the power of our mind so amazing?!

I'm looking forward to enjoying some down time at home this weekend paired with some exciting teaching!  I will teaching @ the Lululemon in Santa Monica this Sunday @ 9:30am.  If you live in the LA area, come play with me and experience the AWESOMEness of Exhale before you drink beer and eat pizza (hehehehe) while watching the super bowl all afternoon!

My challenge to myself this weekend is to surprise myself.  I challenge you to do the same.

xoxoxo,

L.A.