Wellness Wednesday: Mad About Matcha!

If you can’t tell from the title, I’m beginning a new section of the blog – #WellnessWednesday! In this section, you’ll find posts on all thing wellness- recipes, superfoods, etc. 

Starting with… matcha!

You’ve definitely heard of, if not seen, this bright green drink all over the place lately. And for good reason- in addition to being a fun drink with tons of variety options, it’s also incredibly good for you!

So what is it? It’s a special form of green tea that literally means “powdered tea.” This is because when you drink green tea, you’re drinking hot water that is infused with the leaves. Matcha is actually the leaves themselves, ground up into a bitter powder.

Onto the benefits! Matcha is full of antioxidants – even more than blueberries or your fave leafy greens. Since it’s a powder made directly from the leaves, almost all the nutrients remain fully intact.

Matcha is also packed with minerals and antioxidants like catechin and polyphenol. This means that just like green tea, it’s a metabolism booster! *happy dance* It also means that matcha can help fight off illness in the body and improve your overall health. These antioxidants also make matcha a major anti-inflammatory and have been associated with slowing the growth of cancer cells.  And if you’re a caffeine addict,  it will also give you a dose of that- again, more than your typical bag of green tea. It’s also been known to enhance your mood and help you feel at peace.

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Adventuring

First off, I have to say- I am digging this much-needed rain (at least here in CA). I think it’s gone for now, but still. We definitely needed it and it was nice to feel like we had some “winter” weather here for once.

My sister’s boyfriend was in town for a bit before they both go back to school this week so we decided to take him up to LA on Saturday. It was a perfect day to go- it wasn’t crazy crowded (especially for a weekend) and the weather was great.

Sunglasses/Cardigan

We went to Alfred Tea for the first time (so good!), walked around Melrose, walked around The Grove and ended at the Griffith Observatory.

I had such a blast just getting to walk around and see L.A. My family is originally from there, but from a different part, so it’s kind of fun to experience other parts of the city/parts I haven’t seen in awhile.

My mom, sister and I also went down to North Park/La Jolla area of San Diego for a girls day earlier in the week and explored down there for a bit too.

It made me realize how much time I waste staying home on the weekends during the year! Obviously there are weekends at the end of a long week that make you just want to curl up with a book and decompress. But for the most part, we don’t do a whole lot on the weekend. #GetOutoftheHouse2018

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Mexican Hot Chocolate

Happy Friday!

We’re in the final 10 day countdown to Christmas! I’m taking today to finish up all my shopping and wrapping so I can relax and just enjoy family and get some baking done this week.

A favorite in our house during this season is hot chocolate! We have it at least twice a week during December. Carl loves to load his up with peppermint and whipped cream while I prefer to keep it classic with just marshmallows.

Last week, I made him some Mexican Hot Chocolate and he loved it! I grew up drinking it (and champurrado!) with my family, but he had never had it. I love it not only because of the memories, but I think the taste is so unique. It’s not quite as sweet a your average hot cocoa, but it has more spice and flavor.

We usually cheat and just use the Abuelita bars because they’re quick, easy and delicious!

Bring 4 cups of milk to a boil on your stove and break up the tablet with a knife. Drop the pieces in and mix until it dissolves. Then whisk up until it froths. Pour into your mug, top with your favorite treats and enjoy!

I also found a recipe from Little Spice Jar on Pinterest to make your own Mexican Hot Chocolate in a crockpot. This is perfect to set out for family and friends! I’ll definitely be giving this recipe a try next week.

Have you guys tried Mexican Hot Chocolate? What other holiday drinks does your family make to cozy up?

xo,
 M

Three Christmas Event Outfits

It’s the most wonderful (and busy!) time of the year! And a majority of the time, that business sets in weeks before Christmas. Office parties, family get-together, lunches, etc.-  it always seems like there are more events than days during the holiday season!

Which all comes down to one question every time- what to wear?! Some events are more casual with your girls or family, while others require a little more glitz and glam. No matter where you’re headed these last few weeks of December, these three looks will definitely work! 

Brunch with the girls

 If you’re meeting up with the girls to clink mimosa glasses and exchange little gift, this cozy-cute look is perfect. The oversized sweater is so soft and cozy, and I love the little scallop detail at the bottom!

SWEATER
LEGGINGS
SUNGLASSES
BOOTS

Family Gathering

 Christmas Eve is usually a low-key event in terms of dress for my family, so I’m always going for casual festive in my outfit choices. This look is perfect because it uses pieces you probably already have and looks pulled together.

TOP
SCARF
LEGGINGS
BOOTS

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Dealing with Dry Skin

As much as I love December and the chilly months, I definitely do not love the changes that it causes in my skin- as I’m sure we can all agree.

Even though it doesn’t get too cold here in California, we get a lot of dryness and wind (especially right now).

I try to take care of my skin as best I can, but skincare is something I’m setting a goal to work on and become more knowledgeable about in the coming year. Everyone always says they wish they had taken care of their skin in their 20s, so this is the time!

When the cooler weather starts to hit and I can feel parts of my face and lips start to dry, I try to incorporate a moisture-packed mask into my routine at least once a week.

I’ll start by exfoliating my face to buff out all the dead skin and help prep my healthier skin to soak in all the moisture and good oils! This is a definite must – I tend to dry out the most around my nose and smile lines, so I focus a lot on those areas.

Then I’ll steam my face. I’ve seen some great facial steamers (like this one) that I might look into purchasing in the future, but for now, I’m in the DIY stage. You can fill up your sink or a large bowl with hot water and drape a towel around your neck and bowl. Hold your face above the water and soak in allll the good steam. So good for your pores!

Finally, I apply a mask! Right now, I’m using the Yes to Coconuts Moisturizing Mud Mask. I snagged this from Target and I’m in love with it! The smell is amazing and it’s packed with coconut oil and kaolin clay to re-hydrate your face. It’s also paraben and silicone free!

Afterwards, I want to make sure all that good moisture is locked into my face whether I’m going to bed or getting ready for the day.  I spray my face with my favorite rosewater mist (you NEED this!) and then finish off with a hydrating face cream. (Can you tell how well-loved my Ponds cream is?)

What are your favorite skincare products/tips? Share away!

xo,
 M