Atlantis Paradise Island: The Perfect Spring Break Family Destination {Bahamas}

March 22, 2017   

Spring Break, for many of us, is right around the corner. And if you're looking for the perfect destination the entire family will enjoy, then look no further than Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas. I love traveling and although I love my fair share of action-packed (non-stop) trips, I also love vacations where I don't have to worry about ever leaving the resort--and that's where Atlantis Paradise Island comes in. 

You can literally find everything you want without ever leaving the resort, from shopping, swimming with dolphins and sea lions, a water park with a lazy river, a casino, an aquarium, kid activities and so much more. It's a stress-free vacation your entire family will enjoy.  I recently had a chance to visit and absolutely loved it. 

The resort has several towers, which includes the iconic Royal Towers, the Coral Towers (moderately-priced, family friendly-accommodations), the Beach Tower (the most valued-priced tower), The Reef Atlantis (luxurious, residential style studios) and The COVE Atlantis (luxurious ocean view suites).  There's basically something to accommodate all budgets. 

{The Lobby at The COVE Atlantis} 

One of my favorite things about Atlantis Paradise Island is their pools and private beaches. I mean, just check out the crystal clear water of The Cove Beach--it's stunning. 

There's also this amazing children's water play area, which is one of the newest Atlantis additions. It's perfect for the little ones.

There's also something for kids of all ages, from toddlers to pre-teens at Atlantis Kids Adventure (AKA for short). For kids ages 3 to 6 years old there's a fun Sea Squirts program where they can learn about marine animals. For kids ages 3 to 12 years old they also have everything from culinary lessons, outdoor play, and not to mention cool playrooms such as a LEGO Construction room, a grocery store and a Tea Party Room.

I also had such a wonderful experience at the Dolphin Cay where I got to interact with this little guy. He was super sweet and made some of the funniest faces (it was hilarious). You can also swim with dolphins or try Snuba or snorkeling. I'm telling you, there's never a dull moment in this place.

Overall, I had a great time. So whether you're planning a family getaway (or perhaps a romantic trip as well) this place will not disappoint!

Where'd She Get It? Olivia Culpo's Norma Kamali Red High-Waisted Swimsuit

March 20, 2017   

Olivia Culpo looked stunning in this red Norma Kamali high-waisted bikini she posted last week on her Instagram. If you know me, you know I'm a sucker for a high-waisted swimsuit and I absolutely LOVE this red hot number. From the bustier top, to the studs to the high-waisted bottom that perfectly covers those trouble areas---this suit is a must-have this summer.

It's a bit of a splurge, but here's where you can get it. But you better move quick because there are only a few sizes left.

Where to Buy: 

Top: Stud Underwire Bikini Top, Revolve, $375
Bottom: tud High-Waisted Bikini Bottom, Revolve, $365

Here are some options in case you're looking for some more budget-friendly options:

Beauty Review: My Organic Beauty Favorites

March 15, 2017   

I'm constantly trying new organic beauty products and one organic beauty line that has quickly become one of my favorites is Juice Beauty. There's so many new information surfacing about potentially harmful ingredients used in cosmetics (many of them filled with synthetic chemicals and pesticides), which is why I love the dedication of this brand to use organic ingredients. I've mentioned this before, but I guess it's always worth repeating, our skin can absorb up to 60% of what we place on it, so it's important we reduce the risks of toxins that might contaminate our bodies. Juice Beauty products are made with a potent base of organic juice, vegetables and plants and best of all they're effective! They also have a new make-up line made with Phyto-Pigments, which is great. 

Here are a few of their products that I'm currently loving: 

Green Apple Age Defy Serum: You're never too young to start using anti-aging products right? This Green Apple Serum goes on super lightweight and really helps brighten up your skin. It also helped with some of my dark spots from previous breakouts. A little goes a long way and it also smells great.  It's made with an age-defying cocktail of Vitamin C, organic apple juice, organic aloe leaf juice, grape seed oil and willow bark to name a few.

STEM CELLULAR Exfoliating Peel Spray: I've been trying to exfoliate my skin once a week and have noticed such a difference with this Stem Cellular Exfoliating Peel Spray. It's a plant-based exfoliant which you spray on clean skin, gently exfoliate and then rinse off with warm water. My skin felt super soft afterwards.

GREEN APPLE Peel Sensitive: Another great exfoliant is this Green Apple Peel. It helps with discolorations and dark spots. It comes in three formulas: Full-Strength, Sensitive and Blemish Clearing. My skin is pretty sensitive, so I decided to go for the "sensitive" version. It worked perfectly on my skin and was really gentle. It's rich in alpha-hydroxy acids, which stems from the organic apple juice and also has other ingredients such as Vitamin A, organic aloe vera juice and organic lemon juice. The instructions say to use it at night, so make sure you're not using it during the day.

Phyto-Pigment Lip Crayon (Venice Shade): I had been searching high and low for an everyday wear lip color and I'm so happy I found this one. This lip crayon is the perfect hybrid between a lipstick and a lip pencil. My favorite shade is this one called "Venice," which goes great with my olive complexion. It's not too pink and it's not too dark---it's more like a mauve color, which is just what I was looking for. It also comes in more shades too. 

VF Travels: Beach Getaway Essentials (Budget-Friendly)

March 13, 2017   

I just got back a few days ago from Puerto Rico and in two weeks I'm heading to another tropical destination, Punta Cana for my birthday. With so much travel, I've realized there are those essential pieces that always make the cut when I'm packing my bag. Not to mention, they make dressing so much easier once I've arrived.

One piece I never leave without is rompers and maxi dresses. Stores such as Lulu's, Asos and H&M have some great affordable options. This Spring I'm also digging tassel earrings. They can easily dress up any outfit when you're on vacation. I'm absolutely loving the BaubleBar collaboration with Target right now called SUGARFIX (so you'll definitely want to check that out).

Anywho, I've rounded up a few pieces I think you might like for your next beach getaway.

1. Tie-Dye Dress, Lulu's, $68
2. Beach Bag, H&M, $9
3. SUGARFIX by BaubleBar Tassel Earrings, Target, $10
4. Ray-Ban Sunglasses, Saks Off Fifth, $79
5. Wide-Brim Hat, Forever 21, $9
6. Kayla Gladiator Sandals, Target, $29
7. Romper, H&M, $29
8. Tularosa One-Piece, Revolve, $138

What are some of your go-to travel essentials? 

Real Talk: How to Talk to Kids About Death (and what I tell my own son)

March 7, 2017   

When you lose a spouse when you have children, you don’t only grieve your loss, but you also grieve the loss for your child. You grieve the birthdays that his dad will miss, the father-and-son breakfasts at school and the graduations that his dad will not attend. When Fernando passed away that’s how I felt. The hardest part for a while (and still is sometimes) was how to talk to Andy about death.

Andy knows that his papa is in heaven with God, but sometimes the follow-up questions are the hardest. I remember one time picking up Andy from pre-school and him telling me that his Papa had left him and that he wished he could get on a rocket ship and go to heaven. My heart literally dropped and I remember reaching for my sunglasses so Andy wouldn’t see the tears coming down my face. As I tried to compose myself to answer such hard questions, I reassured him that his Papa NEVER left him, that his Papa loved him more than anything in this world, but that God needed him. I told him that we still had a purpose here on earth and that’s why God still had us here, but that one day we will all be reunited again. Andy smiled at me and said “I love Papa!”

I talk to Andy about his dad all the time and although he was only two when Fernando passed away, it’s amazing to see that he still remembers things. He remembers his dad with so much love and knows that his Papa still watches over him from heaven. We also like to look through old photos together to keep his memory alive.

I recently had the chance to chat with Melody Boulton, a psychotherapist and author of the book ‘Amazing Adventures with Dev,’ which she wrote when her son passed away. Here are a few tips she shared on how to help children cope with grief and how to talk about death.

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Flamenco Festival at the Adrienne Arsht Center

March 3, 2017   

I recently had the opportunity to attend the Flamenco Festival at the Adrienne Arsht Center. I took along my mom and Andy and we had an amazing time. I've actually been meaning to take my mom for a while now (the show is held every year) especially since she lived in Palma de Mallorca, Spain for 10 years and LOVES flamenco dancing.

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