Hello Gourdgeous!

Fall is in the air, and pumpkin season is here!!! Just one scroll through your Instagram feed and it’s full of family, friends and celebs enjoying the outdoors, which of course includes the obligatory trip to the pumpkin patch.   I am a huge fan of all things pumpkin, especially the treats (who isn’t??).  I found 6 amazing new recipes that I can’t wait to try out this month. 

My fave has to be butternut squash soup that is why I tried this recipe first. I love the mild, sweet flavor and its packed with iron, vitamins A and C which we can all use 🙂

  1. Butternut Squash Soup

Recipe Via Savory On Line

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook Time 30 minutes

Serving: 4


1 medium butternut squash

1 medium yellow onion

3 cloves of garlic

1 jalapeno

3 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 qt vegetable broth

¼ cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Trim and peel the butternut squash.  Halve the squash and with a spoon remove seeds.  Cut squash into 1inch chunks.  Peel and cut the onion into wedges. Peel garlic. Stem and cut jalapeno. 

On a large baking sheet, toss butternut squash, onion, garlic and jalapeno with oil, cumin, and paprika. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until squash is tender.

In a large pot, combine the roasted veggies with the broth. Heat to a simmer on high. Reduce heat and simmer 5 min. more. With immersion blender, puree soup until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide among 4 bowls and garnish with pepitas.  Serve with bread rolls. 

I can’t wait to try out the following recipes:

2. Leaf-Topped Mini Pumpkin Pies

Recipe via www.wilton.com

3. Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Sauce

Recipe via www.cookingclassy.com

4. Pumpkin Cream Cheese Crumb Cake

Recipe via www.yammiesnoshery.com

5. Pumpkin Donut Holes

Recipe via www.letseatcake.com

6. No Bake Paleo Vegan Pumpkin Balls (Trying this one today)

Recipe Via www.thebigmansworld.com

Fall Overalls

Happy first day of Autumn / Fall Lovelies?? Although it does not feel like it in Boston today with temps in the eighties☀️

A few weeks ago I did a post on styling a slip dress that could easily transition from Summer to Fall with minimal effort. I found another laid-back denim Summer time favorite in my closet that can work in the Fall as well ~ Overalls. Yes, overalls can be an easy, go-to outfit that is paired with a simple tee and sandals. However, with the right layering overalls can just as easily be transitioned into the cool-weather season.

  • Striped Tee and Booties

It’s super easy to put together, and I always loves how stripes add a little bit of Parisian flare to any outfit.

  • With a plaid shirt and a Wide-Brim Hat

For the ultimate Fall look —overalls, a loose-fitting plaid shirt, and a wide-brim hat. Depends on the temps, overalls are perfect for layering. I started off wearing my plaid shirt in the morning, but as the got warmer I just tied the shirt around my waist. 

  • Under a Cardigan

For a dressy, yet casual look, overalls can be paired with a classic form fitting black top, cardigan and booties.

Finish off any of these overall ensembles with some stylish accessories (shoes, purse, jewelry) and you have yourself a look that’s effortless and fashionable.

What summer piece are you looking forward to transitioning to fall?

Photo Credit: Andrew Swaine

Below are a few more overall pieces you can transition into fall:

JC Penny Xersion Active Wear

With day light growing shorter, cooler temps and a hectic back to school schedule it is easy to get off track with workout goals.   The struggle is real but I am pushing on by having a positive mindset, a good playlist, trying out some fun routines and last but not least purchasing some cute active wear.  It is no secret, when you look good, you feel good and having the right clothes can truly boost your confidence and motivation to workout. 

But I think we can all agree that quality active wear can get really pricey.  So, I was pleasantly surprised when I visited JC Penny’s Active Wear Department. While JC Penney offers a great assortment of top brands like Adidas, Puma, New Balance and Nike, they also have their own active wear brand called Xersion.  I decided to purchase 2 sets over the summer to try out. I am impressed with my picks. Not only with the flattering cut and function but the reasonable price too.  Both the sets survived the multiple washing machine spins to hold their shape and color since its purchase. The leggings are super comfy and stylish.  The strappy bra has a very flattering fit and  combines attention to detail and functionality. What I love most about the bras is that it supports without being restrictive.

Have you tried the Xersion Active Wear brand?

What are some of the things you do to amp up your health goals?

Photo Credit: Andrew Swaine

Shop This Look by Clicking On Images Below:

Charlotte Tilbury Makeup Line

It’s been a while since I did a post on makeup. My last makeup post was a New Years Eve look that I still love, using products from NARS. To take a look click HERE. My favorite two NARS products that I continue to wear since that post is the Sweet Dreams Lip Gloss and Radiant Creamy concealer.

My talented makeup artist friend Renee Moschella has been raving about the Charlotte Tilbury line. So, I was super excited when our schedules finally clicked and she offered to show me what the fuss about Charlotte Tilbury was all about. Clearly I’ve been missing out!

If you have not heard about Charlotte Tilbury the woman behind this fabulous makeup line, click HERE.

I am so in love with this look that Renee created.  The three products that impressed me the most is: the foundation, lipstick and bronzer. The airbrush flawless foundation applied smoothly to my skin and left that perfect poreless finish which I could not get enough of.  I was amazed  how moisturized and glowy it made my skin feel. I would recommend this product for those who like full coverage foundation that is not heavy.

The lipstick with a sassy name ~ Bitch Perfect really flatters my skin tone. I love a natural looking shade so this peach-toned lipstick is perfect for me.  I like it layered with the Sweet Stiletto lipgloss. This is a lipstick that I can rock every day!

Renee used the bronzer on the hallows of my cheek to give me an exquisite jawline and sculpted mega-watt cheekbones. I wish I could achieve this contoured look by myself but I am realistic and I know I will make a mess of it.  However, those of you who are skilled at blending and contouring should  check it out.

The image below was taken after 7 hours without any touch ups! I was really impressed with the staying power of the foundation and lipstick.

All of the Charlotte Tilbury products used to create this look did not disappoint. I would love to purchase the entire kit, unfortunately these products are not cheap. So, I am adding one product at a time.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Renee for doing my makeup and introducing me to this fabulous makeup line. Renee and my husband Andrew have worked on many photo shoots together.  Recently, the three of us teamed up to do a Bollywood inspired photoshoot which I am really excited to share with you all soon.  So, stay tuned. ?

Have you tried any of these Charlotte Tilbury products? If yes, which is your favorite? If not, what is your current makeup product that you are loving?

Photo Credit: Andrew Swaine

You can shop all of these beauty products online directly from the Charlotte Tilbury site.

           Below are the products that Renee used to achieve

                            this look. Click on Image to shop:



The Style Guide to Slip Dress

Hope you Lovelies had an awesome weekend. Andy and I spent part of the weekend chilling by the beach and the other half getting chores around the house done. It never seizes to amaze me at the amount of laundry the two of us can generate. .  Speaking of clothes I’ve started to notice bloggers and influencers start to post more Fall inspired fashion. Just when I feel like I’ve settled into my summer wardrobe, it seems like it’s already time to start thinking about next season. I would love to have one cohesive closet that worked all year round but we all know that that is not realistic.

However, I am not despairing because I have a few pieces in my closets that I can still rock in the Fall and I bet you do too.  One of the pieces I am talking about  is the slip dress. This leopard print midi dress has become my go to dress for these hot summer days. It looks chic solo with great accessories but it can also be easily transitioned from Summer to Fall where  I can make multiple styles work with minimal effort. The spaghetti-strapped slip dress is a perfect layering piece. It can be paired with a t-shirt or boxy pullover sweater when the temps drop. The slip dress can also be paired with a blazer for the office or a denim or leather jacket for a weekend look.

Although the notion of a seasonless wardrobe may not be realistic I think I maybe wearing this dress for more than one season. So, lovelies YAY or NAY to slip dresses? And which of these ways to wear them do you like the most? Let me know in the comments below!

Photo Credit:  Andrew Swaine

Below are a few more slip dresses to style for Summer & Fall:


Straw Accessories to Wear All Summer

Happy August Lovelies. Summer is still going strong and we have the heat to prove it. But no complaints from me. I am enjoying every bit of summer just give me a straw hat and I am good to go.

It comes as no surprise that straw hats seems to be everyone’s favorite summer accessory. They not only keep you cool and protect your eyes but it also instantly makes you feel like you are on holiday. There’s definitely an increase of the use of straw accessories lately not just hats. I keep spotting stunning woven pieces everywhere from shoes, to bags and even earrings. The best part about straw accessories are that they are so fun to style as the material is a chic statement.

Straw accessories like hats and bags are versatile pieces you can easily pull into your look. I especially love the combination of this straw hat style and bag paired with a classic striped top and yellow pants– it is an instant interest piece bringing texture, pattern, and that beachy effect to your look all at once. As the natural color of the straw accessories is a neutral one it can be matched with whatever color you prefer.

Photo Credit:  Andrew Swaine

If you are still searching for a perfect straw accessory, I’ve rounded up some of my favorites here. Hope you find some straw accessories worth buying that you can enjoy every summer.









Nailing It: 5 Nail Colors to Try this Summer

White or nude nail polish is usually my go-to colors. However, in the summer my nails are ready to play in the sparkling sun. Summer, is the best time to go a bit bolder with color choices without going too far outside my comfort zone. Here are 5 colors that I have been having fun experimenting with.

  1. Blue – The I’s Have It

Sky blue nail polish is the perfect way to bring the spirit of the summer right to your fingertips. This light blue shade called The I’s Have It by OPI’s “Alice Through The Looking Glass” collection.

  1. Pink – Maddy

Pink nail polish is the perfect choice for summer because not only is it bright and fun but it is also feminine and chic. This shade called Maddy by Julep is definitely giving my classic red manicure a run for its money.

  1. Yellow – Exotic Birds Do Not Tweet (radiant yellow)

Yellow is surprisingly flattering on all skin tones. This happy color called Exotic Birds Do Not Tweet by OPI will help brighten up your day! Summer is the perfect time to play with color, especially if you’re out of the office and going on vacation.

  1. Orange – Turn Tint Up

This orange shade called Turn Tint Up by Funky Fingers has to be my favorite. All you need is two coats of this amazingly creamy nail polish to give you a beautiful self-leveling look. Such a great deal on this nail polish too – just $2.00 a bottle. I grabbed 4 shades from my local drug store when they had them in stock.

  1. Green- Mint Montauk

Nineties  neons are back in a big way, and one of the easiest ways to test out the trend is on your nails. Try the OPI Nail Lacquer Mini Pack Neon Revolution – 6ct available at Target for only $14.99.

Bright green is one of the buzziest shades of the season so I had to experiment with Mint Montauk by Funky Fingers .  I started off with green on my right hand then decided to go with a multi colored mani on my left hand. Why choose one color when you can choose to wear so many more? Hey, if you’re feeling adventurous and playful, mix and match as your heart desires.

What summer nail colors are you rocking this season? Would love to hear from you.

How cute are these rings by Moods By Silvie?  I’ve been wearing these sterling silver minimal design rings everyday since I received them. They are handcrafted with love and came in a personally packaged box with a beautiful note and polishing cloth.  These rings are available on Etsy.  Grab them while you can because there are only a few left.

Photo Credit:  Andrew Swaine



Summer Stripes Styled 3 Ways

There are some summery trends that really just make summer feel like summer when you’re wearing them. I am talking about stripes. Whether you’re coastal living or find yourself landlocked, stripes are the perfect way to add a touch of nautical to your summer ensembles.

What I love about stripes is that you can dress it up or down. Here are my 3 looks:

  1. Keeping it classic and chic in this French inspired black and white  look. If you only own one striped top, opt for the off the shoulder, three-quarter sleeve shirt in black and white or navy blue and white. The horizontal stripes are perfect to pair with shorts, skirts or pants.


2.  Keeping it cool and edgy in these wide-leg striped pants. They are perfect to remix all throughout summer.

  1. Keeping it simple and sophisticated in this super cute candy striped dress. Paired with espadrilles this look screams summer getaway! What I love about this dress is that it can effortlessly transition from the beach, to brunch, to walking around town, to dinner.

Hope some of these looks inspire your summer wardrobe. You’ve earned your stripes to give it a try.

Photo Credit: Andrew Swaine

Below are a few more striped pieces under $60.00




Summer Trend: Blazers and Shorts

If you’ve been following me for a while, you know how much I love blazers. I love achieving a mix of polished and playful looks with a blazer. If you love blazers just as much as I do, you too, can achieve the chic tailored silhouette by incorporating a fresh and summery vibe with some tailored shorts. The short and blazer combo has given a new lease of life to the suit trend that was everywhere in Spring.

Wearing a blazer with shorts can be a really easy look to pull off as long as you have the right type of blazer. I got this at H& M’s mark down sale for just $8.99. I love how it looks paired with a pair of white shorts and wedges. Giving my bare legs as much Vitamin D this season. I bet it would look just as good paired with darker colored shorts and sneakers. The fabric is lightweight and sits comfortably on the body, achieving a relaxed and effortless look. I chose a size medium so I won’t have a problem wearing it over a sweater in the Fall.

Test-drive the trend by scooping this (on-sale) stripped blazer also from H&M for only $13.99. Style it with jeans or a leather pencil skirt; the styling options are limitless. What to you think about the blazer and shorts combo?


Photo Credit: Andrew Swaine

Vitamin Sea

Happy Summer Lovelies.  How many of you will be spending these hot, lazy summer days at the beach? What emotion do you feel when you spend time by the ocean?

Growing up in South Africa, we were lucky to have the sea just a ten minute drive from where we lived. My love of the ocean developed through accompanying my dad on his early morning fishing trips. While dad fished I discovered the wonderful sea life that crowded the tidal pools. I could have spent hours looking at the myriad of magnificent sea creatures darting around and watch the majestic waves crash the rocks on the shore. The relentless waves both frightened and invigorated me. In the summer months when my cousins visited during school vacation my parents would take us all to the beach. We would spend an entire day at the beach running, playing and exploring. The magic of the ocean is that it doesn’t matter whether you are standing on the shore or far out at sea; you can still sense the wonder and the force of the ocean.

I am so fortunate that my husband shares and feels the same way about the ocean. When looking for a home after we got married, Andrew said to me, “I need to be close to the ocean. It fills my soul.” So, we found a home that is just a five minute walk from the sea. The ocean is truly a source of inspiration for us both.

A lot of times
We are angry at other people
For not doing what
We should have done for ourselves.

~Responsibility – Rupi Kaur

It deeply saddens me to see what our actions are doing to the ocean. The one action that both Andrew and I have taken to ensure the well being of our ocean is thinking about the impact of our plastic use on the ocean. We both have reduced the amount of plastic we use. We don’t use plastic bags when we shop, we also don’t use single use plastic ware or straws. During our morning walks to the beach, we always stop to pick up litter.

What one action do you take to ensure the future well being of our ocean? Would love to hear from you.

Photo Credit: Andrew Swaine