THE PERFECT HOLIDAY GIFT + A GREAT DISCOUNT

12/13/2017

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If you couldn’t already tell from the wave of Christmas trees and festive decorations, the holidays are among us and in full swing. I don’t know about you, but the idea of purchasing gifts for others always is my favorite part of Christmas. The process of picking out that perfectly personal present is so fun and rewarding. This year, I’m sticking with brands and products that I trust and know are sure to please everyone on my list.

If you’re like me and haven’t already crossed some people off, why not get them something to help motivate them in the wellness department? I am a longtime fan of the brand Outdoor Voices. Their modern spin on athletic wear offers unique color ways and flattering shapes/designs for every body type. And, the quality is truly unparalleled. If I’m doing any sort of activity—whether it’s working out, running a quick errand, or lounging around the house—I throw on my favorite OV selects.

When deciding what to gift friends, family, and even my big kids this year, Outdoor Voices was a no-brainer. The brand has already put together a curated OV Gift Guide to make your holiday gift-buying experience as painless as possible. And, if you’re unsure where to start, their Rec Kits are always hit with anyone that gives or receives them. With the Rec Kits in particular, you scoop up two OV pieces at a discounted rate, and you can personalize the kit based on what styles and colors your recipient prefers. I personally love the Athena Crop Top and 3/4 Warm-Up Leggings, but if workout clothes aren’t really their speed, or you’re unsure of sizing, Outdoor Voices has tons of other amazing gift options—everything from bags to water bottles, and even gift cards!

New Years is a time when everyone seems to be ready and motivated to start the fresh year ahead off on a healthier foot. I think most people would agree that usually consists of a cleaner diet and eating habits, and, of course, concentrating on fitness and getting in shape. While I am definitely one of the masses that tries to incorporate all of the above, I think helping encourage anyone to get a jump-start on a healthier lifestyle is a always thoughtful gesture. So, whether someone on your list is a fitness buff, has never owned a gym membership, or falls somewhere in between, Outdoor Voices is a great place to start for gifts this season.

I haven’t mentioned the best news yet: Outdoor Voices is offering a 20% discount code to Bleubird followers that make a first time purchase on the site. If you’ve never shopped with OV before, use the code “Bleubird20” until 12/31/17. This does exclude kits and third-party merchandise, however. Happy holidays, and more importantly, happy shopping! 

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This post is in partnership with Outdoor Voices.

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ME: NEW BAGS

12/11/2017

17 Adding designer pieces to your collection may not always be necessary, but that’s what makes them luxury, right? There’s something about searching, saving for, and scoring your dream designer piece that makes the process so rewarding and fun. And, regardless of if you’re an investor, a collector, or perhaps ready to make your first ever “splurge” purchase, the holidays are the perfect season (and reason) to begin the hunt, and treat yourself or a loved one to something you’ve been eyeing forever. I am so thrilled to be partnering with StockX for the holidays. If you aren’t already familiar with the brand, StockX is a resale site that sells new and gently used designer items. Specifically, the site features over 11,000 designer handbags including brands like Chanel, Hermes, Gucci, and more, with new bags being added to the site daily.

What makes StockX so unique, however, is the process. Both buyers and sellers are completely anonymous, so you never have to worry about a seller reaching out to you directly. And, if you see a bag you love, but it hasn’t gone on sale yet, you can still place a bid anyway. That way, the seller knows you’re interested and willing to pay a certain price. If bidding isn’t your style, you can always purchase the bag directly through the site’s “Buy Now” option. All bags are sent to StockX once they sell to be authenticated and thoroughly checked for condition and wear before they get into buyers’ hands. It’s a seamless process!

My first dip into the luxury world started when after years of hunting, I found, purchased, and fell in love with my forever vintage Chanel handbag. While I still love and treasure that handbag, I wanted another option, so I could carry it less due to its age. I also wanted something a bit smaller. So, I opted for the Chanel Boy Bag from StockX. It’s perfect for grab-and-go. For work and travel, the Goyard shopper was my choice. It literally fits everything I need inside, including my 15-inch laptop, and allows me to keep my purses well-organized and clean. After all, if you invest in your bags, you want to keep them in good condition!

If you’re on the hunt for the perfect holiday gift this season, be sure to visit the StockX website. And, don’t worry if the exact piece you’re after isn’t listed. StockX is the only website where you can tell the world exactly what you’re looking for and what you are willing to pay.

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This post is in partnership with StockX.

WHAT’S REALLY IN YOUR BEAUTY CABINET?

09/28/2017

1As Beauty Editor at Mother, I have the privilege and opportunity to test a number of different products, from skincare to makeup, and everything in between. If I’m being completely honest, I love beauty, but especially skincare. And, I’m so thankful to have a career where I am exposed to so many wonderful, deserving brands and products on a regular basis. We’re only given one skin, and I think that it’s our responsibility to take care of it in the best way we possibly can. That said, the older I become, and the more that the industry starts to make a shift toward green beauty, the more that I begin to wonder what’s actually in a lot of the products that I’m testing, trying, and ultimately allowing into my body.

Did you know that the United States only has bans on 11 cosmetics ingredients? That might sound like a lot, but in places like Europe, they ban over 1,300, so the gap is actually quite staggering. That number isn’t just for adults, either. Baby product companies in America also lack the regulation and standards they’d have to adhere to in other countries. I don’t know about you, but I personally find it difficult to track and monitor ingredient lists and I can get pretty lazy when it comes to it. Even once I do know what’s in a product, I still don’t know what some ingredients actually do, or the potential harm that they may or may not cause. At the end of the day, it’s just a tough industry to monitor, and honestly, we as consumers shouldn’t have to do it.

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7All that said, I started to comb through my beauty closet and all of the products on my bathroom countertop to see if there were any places that I could improve. Now, I can’t say that I can or ever will make the switch to a completely natural or green regimen, but I have definitely started exploring more natural beauty products. If you’ve started the process toward going green with your own routine, you’ll know that its no easy feat. I was thrilled to discover that there are plenty of brands that I already own that hold themselves to a higher standard. One in particular being Biossance, which I have been a long time partner.

If you’ve been following along with Bleubird for a while, you’ll know that this is a brand I use and love, especially for its effectiveness of the main ingredient, Squalane. However, after doing a bit of research, I found that while the U.S. bans 11 beauty ingredients and Europe bans 1,300, Biossance actually bans over 2,000 potentially harmful ingredients from its products. To put it simply, Biossance takes the guesswork out of it, so that you can be confident in what you’re putting on (and in!) your skin. Because, let’s face it: we deserve better. So, as I continue to finesse my routine and dive deeper into the background of the brands I’m using, Biossance will remain, especially their Eye Gel, Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil, and Squalane + Probiotic Gel. If you’re interested in checking out Biossance for yourself, stop by your local Sephora or visit online.

This post is in partnership with Biossance.

TEN THINGS

09/15/2017

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I couldn’t be happier that this crazy work week has come to a close. I plan to spend most of the weekend relaxing with my family and tackling the mountain of laundry we’ve managed to accumulate. Hope you all have a great one! Here are this week’s Ten Things…

1. It feels like fall here in Nashville and I finally get to wear my favorite sweater of the season.

2. Broad City is BACK!

3. How to talk to your kids about white privilege.

4. 2017 Emmy predictions are in.

5. Gucci’s new campaign stars share their favorite objects.

6. I want to try making a raw cheesecake this weekend. This recipe looks promising.

7. What you therapist really thinks.

8. I just received Karen Mordechai’s latest cookbook Simple Fare Fall/Winter. It’s gorgeous!

9. I am completely obsessed with this velvet blazer.

10. The best street style from New York Fashion Week spring ’18.

Photo above via Vogue.

EAT THIS: KIMCHI SPRING ROLLS

08/31/2017

KimchiSpringRolls_BleubirdKimchiSpringRolls_Bleubird2One of my favorite restaurants here in Nashville is a vegan spot called Avo. I eat there almost weekly because I just can’t get enough of the avocado margarita and kimchi spring rolls—both highly addictive and a must-try if you’re ever visiting Music City! I crave the spring rolls and Thai dipping sauce so often that I decided I needed to try to crack the recipe, so I could enjoy these insanely delicious, yet healthy, finger foods at home. After posting about my obsession with them on Instagram Stories, an angel of a follower shared the original recipe with me. HALLELUJAH!!! I immediately ran to the store to scoop up the ingredients and got to work in the kitchen. They were spot on and now I am sharing the recipe here, so you too can enjoy this fresh and bold flavored kimchi and cashew blend of goodness. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Thai Dipping Sauce:
1 cup raw almond butter
1 Tbsp freshly chopped (and peeled) ginger
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
1 small jalapeno (seeds removed)

Kimchee Filling: Yields 2 quarts
4 cups cashews (soaked for 1-2 hours and drained)
1/4 cup Liquid Aminos
1/2 cup sesame oil
1/4 cup raw tahini
1T agave (optional. I omitted, since I prefer sugar-free)
1 quart pre-made kimchi

Fresh veggies of choice
Collard Greens and/or rice paper wrappers

Process cashews, liquid aminos, sesame oil, tahini, agave (if using), and ginger in food processor until chunky consistency is achieved. Mix with roughly chopped kimchi and set aside. Using rice paper wrappers (or try collard wraps!) roll 2 Tbsp of kimchi filling, organic spring mix and julienned veggies (cucumber, bell pepper, carrots, and purple cabbage are best!) For the dipping sauce, blend all ingredients in high-speed blender. So easy and incredibly tasty!

I hope all of you non-Nashvillians will give them a try. Seriously, you need these in your life! If you’re afraid of the kimchi being too spicy, have no fear—I don’t like too much heat and these are quite mild. The chef at Avo is pure genius! I will also be sharing the oh-so creamy and boozy avocado margarita with all of you soon! xx

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