Author Archive for southcoaststyleoc
Last weekend the boys and I were invited to a weekend stay at Fashion Island Hotel in Newport Beach, and with as crazy and hectic as its been for our family the last few weeks, I jumped at the opportunity for a little getaway. Even though we live just 20 miles South of Newport, living here you start to grow complacent of the amazing things Orange County has to offer and sometimes its great to pretend to be on vacation even in the cities you live in. Newport is one my favorite little towns because its quant and beautiful but there are so many great restaurants and shops that there is so much do in a weekend, and its perfect for family entertainment! The best surprise of the weekend was being invited to treat Raj to Breakfast with Santa on Sunday morning during our stay at the hotel, this ended up being the highlight of our entire month, I can’t say enough how special this experience was.
Because Raj knew that we were visiting the hotel to have breakfast with Santa, it somehow got into his head that the hotel was also where Santa goes to vacation. At first we thought it was hilarious, but walking into the hotel and seeing their décor, from the beautiful Christmas tree at the entrance to the sweetest little gingerbread cookie village in the lobby, it was soooo easy to make Raj’s idea feel like reality. The receptionist greeted him with the sweetest dolphin stuffed animal, and boom, he thought he had just received “the first gift of Christmas” – MAGIC!!
Once we made it up to our beautiful room and took a little tour around, we knew we wanted to continue the fun of pretending this is where Santa stays, so we decided to show Raj how Santa lives it up on vacation and instead of leaving the room for dinner, we decided to stay in and order room service. I loooove eating at all of the great restaurants in Newport, but since we wanted to make the night extra special we decided to save those for another night (I made a list of my favorites below) and we watched Christmas movies in our PJ’s while eating dinner. We loved that we could stream movies straight from our phones to the TVs in the room, it really was the perfect night!
We absolutely loved the room amenities. From the huge vanity, separate from the bathroom which is soooo important when multiple people are getting ready, to the huge bath tub and shower… us U’s were very very comfortable!
Breakfast with Santa was everything you could have ever dreamed of for your children. Santa was one of the most engaged, sweetest, jolliest Santas I have ever met and Raj was smitten with him. Because the event was a little more personal the kids all had so much time to talk with Santa, bring him letters and cookies, and Santa even read them a story! I don’t think I could explain how magical it is to see your children light up over such a great experience; Raj hasn’t stopped talking about it and tells me daily that he misses Santa!! I think it is something he and we will remember forever.
Fashion Island is hosting one more weekend of Breakfast with Santa this Sunday and trust me when I say if you’re in town stop everything and take your kids, it will be the highlight of the season, I promise!!
If you are thinking about taking a vacation to Newport I wanted to make a quick travel list for you. Whether you are from out of state, out of town, or a local like us, it’s always nice to plan a relaxing getaway in this beautiful city. From the beaches to shopping and restaurants, its a fun place to visit with so much to do!
THINGS TO DO
Fashion Island Hotel – the hotel offers seasonal experiences all year long. If you are coming around holiday time check their site to see what experiences they have to offer, from movies over the pool in summer to Christmas activities in the winter, there is always something happening at the hotel!
Fashion Island mall – located just across the street from the hotel, there are so many great stores and shops (my favs are Nordstrom and Anthropologie)
Beaches – from Crystal Cove to Newport Beach, these are some of California’s most popular and beautiful beaches
Balboa Island – if you have never taken an afternoon to walk around this little spot you are missing out. It has that entire old town beach vibe and there are shops and places to eat and the scenery is gorgeous (make sure browse some of the beautiful homes in the neighborhood as well)
Lido Marina Village – the prettiest strip of shops you will ever see! Such a classic beach town vibe with sooo many photo opportunities that you’ll make every Insta star jealous!
WHERE TO EAT
Have you ever visited Newport? I know all of my locals have but I would love to hear from those of you who aren’t from California. Locals, what are some of your favorite spots?
Thank you so so much to the Fashion Island Hotel and all of your incredible staff. You really helped make this holiday season extra special for my family and I could never thank you enough for creating such an incredible experience that Raj will remember for the rest of his life!
SHOP THE LATEST FROM THIS POST
There are so many sales that popped up today that I had to share some here for all of you. A ton of my recent purchases from black friday and over the last few weeks have restocked and are on sale again (amazing!) and they’re all just too great not to alert the media. This red cardigan sweater I wore over the weekend for Breakfast with Santa at the Fashion Island Hotel is on sale for $40, the denim I am wearing are now $70, and these booties which I have lived in since October are now $105 which is the lowest price I have seen them at!
I plan to do a try on session today on Instagram stories, and if you saw my Gift Guides that went live I plan to show some of items I personally own from the guides, but for now you can shop the items from the sale below. Also below is a cheat sheet of some of my favorite stores that have sales going on, most offering shipping dates for items to arrive before Christmas,so act fast because the cut off for most stores for shipping delivery before 12/24 is December 18!!
BEST SALES OF THE DAY
LOFT 50% off using code MERRY
GAP 50% off and extra 20% off online using code GIFTS
Old Navy 25% off everything
Anthropologie 30% off everything
Target $25 off when you spend $100 toys
Ulta up to 50% off gift sets
Happy Holiday shopping!!
For my Kids Guide I wanted to select items that are special, unique, engaging, and more than just a piece of plastic that will be donated or sold in a yard sale in just a few months. When it comes to buying for Raj lately, we are really trying to practice buying quality or quantity and teaching him to take care of and learn about something while simultaneously playing. I love when he is playing with toys that are something he can take interest and hobby in and learn about: ocean animals, dinosaurs, etc. and its important to me that he not only is engaged but that he can develop an interest in something through play. Gifts for little kids don’t have to be expensive, but they should represent something or have use, I truly believe that as both a mom and an educator. All of the items I shared here are gifts that will hold meaning for years or serve a purpose and I really took the time to find items for this guide that I know Raj has and gets great play and use of already! These items are guaranteed wins and any kid would be lucky to receive them and any parent would appreciate the thought placed in your purchase.
Some of the shops I shared above have shared a special coupon code for my readers!!
Bitty Brah use code amanda25 for 25% off
Jai Jai Hooray use code AMANDALOVE for 15% off
Petit Collage use code SOUTHCOASTSTYLE for 15% off
We are so close to Christmas and nearing the end of the safe zone of placing online orders to have our Christmas gifts here in time so I wanted to share some quick and easy guides for all of you who are scrambling at the last minute to purchase gifts for those you love! Although I know and firmly believe the season is not about presents, it is still so fun and exciting to find and buy the perfect gift for those we love just to see the smiles and excitement on their faces. Buying a meaningful gift shows thought, love, and acknowledgement that you took the time to think about that person and that makes anyone feel special. I LOVE shopping for others wayyyyy more than I love shopping for myself, so gift buying is my JAMMM.
This guide is for that special lady in your life. The girl who you imagine to have everything which now makes you feel stuck on what to buy for her. She is special, unique, but cares about how she takes care of herself and you want to buy something extra special for her. Be it a girlfriend, your mom, your wife, best friend… with these gifts you don’t need to know her size or personal preference because mark my words when I say anyyyyyy girl would love ALL of these items! Most of these items I own and if I don’t already own them, they’re on my personal list so trust me when I say I wouldn’t share something that isn’t worth every penny.
Click the numbers under the photo to shop these items!
These items make perfect stocking stuffers, teacher gifts, gift exchanges with the girlfriends or co-workers… basically anyone who you want to buy something special for but have to stick to a budget on. We can all use some of these items and what makes them even more amazing is they won’t break the bank but are a little more personal than a gift card!
up to 60% off select items
BOGO 50% off Toys, $10 Pajamas, steal deals on appliances (my favorite InstantPot included)
50% off purchase using code FRIYAY
30% off everything
40% off everything using code INDIGO
24% off using code FRIDAY18
Christmas trees under $100
50% off entire purchase
25% off entire site
25% off entire site using code GIFT25
25% off entire site
50% off entire site
40% off entire site using code BLACK40
up to 30% off select brands using code FRIDAY
$15 & under Black Friday deals
Patagonia up to 30% off, North Face up to 25% off
20% off $40 or more using code BLKFRIDAY
Items as low as $10
50% off select items
20% off everything using code GATHER
25% off entire site using code WONDER
30-50% off select gift sets
$20 off orders of $125 or more, $30 off $150 or more, $50 off $200 or more
60% off select brands and styles
up to 25% off full price items and 75% off sale items
This post is sponsored by Zenni Optical
So here is a fun life update for you: I now wear glasses!
Like, not just the cool hip sunnies anymore, buuuut full on ‘prescription glasses because my vision is no longer perfect like it was in my youth’ glasses. I haven’t had my vision checked in about 5 years (I know I was already lectured by my doctor), but since the migraines have increased and I have felt my eyes straining recently, I figured it was time to get myself checked out. As luck would have it, you are looking at her, the new me aka ‘Mrs. Wear Glasses when reading, doing computer work, driving at night, using my phone, #30something.’ I am pretty much using glasses now for almost 90% of my day!
Once I learned of this new life changing update I knew I couldn’t wear just any old glasses. I wasn’t just going to walk out of the eye doctor with the basic frames and have no fun at all shopping for my new accessory; I mean, shopping was pretty in much my prescription from my doctor! Why would I miss that opportunity?! Just as fate would have it, my friends at Zenni Optical recently contacted me and since I had recalled looking at the email and thinking, “nope not me this time!” I realized I had to swallow my denial and search for the pushed aside response to them. Meaning, “why yes I am losing my vision now, wanna help me look cool?” And guess what? That is exactly what Zenni did!
Shopping for my glasses was incredibly easy. Their site is so easy to navigate and while the options are endless they make narrowing down your selection incredibly fun. You can shop by face shape, eyeglass style, trends, seasons, and once you narrow down your selection they have this really cool option to upload a photo of yourself and virtually try your glasses on. I had wayyyyyy too much fun with that, haha! I knew I wanted something traditional but then also a pair that was more ‘fun’ and since the prices are really affordable (they were triple the price at my eye doctor’s office) I went for one of each style. I have a bigger and round face so I know bigger frames compliment me, but I wanted something girly and subtle as well and I was so pleased with my selection. It was easy of filling in my prescription numbers, and once they got here I was excited with how they both looked on me – exactly like they did in the photo I uploaded… I actually kind of, sort of, LOVE them!
I have linked both of my style glasses here and here (I am wearing Cat-Eye Glasses 4411525 and the second pair are Cat-Eye Glasses 4412615). I love the tortoise style that I am wearing in these photos because I love the dramatic yet vintage and classic look of them. They make such a fun statement and love how they add character to my face. The lighter nude pair are so pretty and they will be the pair I keep in my car, they are not overbearing so I think I will feel confident wearing them when driving!
Since I am not quite to the contact stage of wearing glasses yet I am having fun adding these new statement pieces to my daily routine. With the price being so great I think I will be ordering a few more pairs to keep around the house and on nightstands and in my handbags and workbags… basically you can officially say I am turning into my mother 😉
Thanksgiving is just around the corner and since I know we all have so much to prep for and get together, I thought it would be fun to share some super easy and affordable outfit options in case you are like me and wait until the last minute to dress yourself. Raj’s outfit was ordered weeks ago, mine? Whelp, that was pretty much the inspiration for this post! I don’t want to spend a lot because the holidays are just around the corner, I want something comfortable and breathable, and even though I will be pretty much cozying up in my living room this year I still want to look cute! I made a collection of 20 dresses perfect for endless turkey and pumpkin cake and comfortable for snuggling up on the couch but that still look dressy. Everything is under $60, so you will get tons of wear for the whole season (throw a sweater over it for cooler days) but you don’t have to feel guilty for the purchase since I know we are all saving up for those Black Friday sales next week.
A handful of the dresses I shared below I actually already own. I went on an Amazon dress shopping spree a few weeks ago (this white dress in these photos I ordered for less than $20), so I will do a try on session with you over on Instagram stories on Tuesday with you and show the ones I own. I have never really shopped for clothes on Amazon before so I wanted to try some out for quality and ease of purchase, and every dress I ordered from Amazon got here in two days, and I was pleasantly surprised at how cute and nice they are for the price!
Thank you King of Christmas for gifting my family this beautiful tree
My dream tree is here and as soon as it arrived I couldn’t wait to pull it out of the box. I have seen the King of Christmas trees all over Instagram for the last few years and I have had it on my wish list for some time. When their sweet team reached out to me and wanted to work together last summer I almost cried of excitement and thankfulness. I have been counting down the days to get our tree set up and I have to say I was so happy to see how beautiful it is in person! We are so excited to decorate for the holidays, as much as I would love to get everything up right away though I am forcing myself to slow down and not feel rushed to go crazy quite yet. We have our tree up, but I think there is a part of me that still want to enjoy fall for a few more days and we will probably wait until mid-end of November to go all out, my goal this holiday season is to slow down and enjoy every minute and not to just ‘do it for the gram’ if you know what I mean. Not to mention it is realllllly throwing Raj off, he doesn’t have a full grasp on timelines yet so seeing the decor has him asking if every morning is Christmas, haha. I plan to do a full Christmas countdown with him so he can have a better understanding of how it all works, but for now we shall enjoy our beautiful tree and how even just standing alone it brightens up our home and puts an instant smile on all of our faces!
Tree details: I ordered the “King Flock” pre-lit tree and it is 7 1/2 feet. It was incredibly easy to install, all you do is stack the 3 pieces and plug it in and all of the lights automatically connect and light up. It took all of 2 minutes to set up!
You guys, this tree is the tree of all trees… I am so in love and so happy with the quality and beauty of it! I can not wait to accessorize and get it all set, and once it is complete I will be sharing a ton more photos with you all. Also, below are my outfit details annnnnd my holiday decor wish list, its just a couple of things I plan to add to my collection this year!!
Thank you SO much, King of Christmas, for getting our holiday season off to the most beautiful start!
Christmas Decor Wish List
shop my look
This content is sponsored by JCPenney. All feelings, stories, and opinions are my own and are written 100% from my heart. Thank you!
Keeping up with my promise to find every possible way to give back to foundations raising money to find a cure for cancer, today I have partnered with the JCPenney Salon to share with you the promotion they’re running in October for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I was so fortunate to be part of this campaign last year and right after I had agreed to join the campaign we found out my cousin Lina was diagnosed with cancer and I knew that I was asked to be part of this for a reason. Similar to last year’s event, the JCPenney Salon will be donating 20% of their retail sales on October 20thand 21stto the American Cancer Society for up to $50,000!!! Another way to give back for the entire month along with any service, you can give a straight donation and can be entered into a raffle to win a basket full of products! As for me, this year I opted to receive a blow out for this campaign and I love that while I was sitting in the chair, I knew that it was for a great cause and that I was giving back to an organization I love and so strongly believe in and support.
I realized while working on this campaign what a wonderful thing it is to have such huge retailers like JCPenney supporting such incredible causes and spreading awareness like this. I feel thankful to have this opportunity to work with companies and brands like this who so firmly believe in giving back to the community. It is so easy to feel so small in this world, especially when you are fighting a battle like breast cancer or any cancer for that matter, so when you see huge companies supporting you whether it seems big or small it can make a world of difference. I know I am just one person, just one blog, one social media channel – but imagine if we ALL walked into JCPenney on October 20thor 21st, posted about it, and dedicated a post to those we love who are currently fighting cancer and what an impact that could have. I know that for my Mother in Law and my cousin, every word of encouragement, someone buying them a pink ribbon pin, or someone honoring them in a social post can lift their spirit and their heart and they are reminded why and what they are fighting for. Imagine if we all did this for each other!
Thank you to JCPenney for choosing me to be part of this mission. My loyalty to you is so strong because I know you care and I see how much this cause and fight means to you.
To my readers, lets all join together and share how we give back and support our loved ones today and every day!
To my Mother in Law and cousin Lina, this post is for you. I love you, I honor you, and I support you always.
I was recently gifted some of the most beautiful pieces from the MacKenzie-Childs Fall Collection and I don’t think I have ever been more starstruck to work with a brand ever. I remember browsing the collection every season wishing that one day I would be able to splash my future home with some of the decor items in the future. I am still not too sure how I got so lucky to be given this opportunity but if there is anything you can be sure of it is that I am beyond grateful for these gifts from their team!
When the box of decor landed on my doorstep I could not wait to rip it open. Raj was home with me when I was opening it, and the joy in his face was probably just as evident as it was in mine, he could not believe his eyes that Halloween had finally found its way to our home! Immediately he begged me to decorate our house, and as I started placing some of the items throughout the house he begged for more and more and more, and before I knew it I was in our garage bringing in the rest of our Halloween decor. He wanted items in our living room, the dining room, kitchen, his room, and pretty much everywhere. The following day after school we had to make a stop at Trader Joe’s and they had just started bringing out their pumpkins, and you better believe there he was filling up our cart full of pumpkins!
I have always loved the holidays, always enjoyed decorating our home and getting excited for all of the holiday festivities (even as a child I would decorate my bedroom with all of my mom’s unwanted decor), so now that Raj is finally at an age where he not only gets excited for the holidays but completely understands what they are and wants to help prepare for them, our house has become so much fun!! With his birthday so close to Halloween I have always thought it was so cool how much he loves Halloween, so it feels like even more of a reason to go completely nuts in decorating.
I wanted to snap some pretty photos of some of my favorite corners and areas of our home which are decorated and I linked all of the items below. Also, since Winter is right around the corner at the bottom of this post I have put together some of the Winter Holiday Collection from MacKenzie-Childs that I will be keeping my eye on. I don’t always buy all brand new items every year but I do love buying a few pieces to add to our collection every year, and now with Raj so excited you better believe we will be going all out!
This content is sponsored by Words with Friends. All feelings, stories, and opinions are my own and are written 100% from my heart. Thank you!
“Cancer does not discriminate. It doesn’t care if you are a 57 year old about to become a first-time grandmother or if you are a 36 year old mother of three, and unfortunately for my family, we have witnessed this first hand. Today, every day, every month we honor those we love who have been affected by cancer, and for the month of October I am proud to honor the two I love most: my mother-in-law and my cousin, both victims of breast cancer. Words with Friends is aware of the reality and that is why I am so proud to work with them to share that this month they are partnering with Susan G. Komen to raise awareness for breast cancer and have launched a new “Pink Ribbon Tile” in support. Their goal is to raise awareness through play and through all of you sharing your screenshots of the game’s new pink ribbon tiles. They are hoping to unlock an up to $100,000 donation to find a cure for breast cancer! We all know someone, have lost someone, or could be that someone who has been diagnosed with breast cancer; let us all honor and praise those still in battle. This entire month and every day I do my best to honor my MIL and cousin who fight so brave, from the day of diagnosis and still today, and it is my privilege to be a constant support for them always and to use my platform to spread awareness about any way to give back to cancer research.
Some of you may have seen that post on my Instagram feed last week, but most of you may not realize just how incredibly passionate I am to raise money for cancer research to find a cure for this awful disease. In the US alone, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime, which is just heartbreaking. All of these women are mothers, grandmothers, sisters, wives, friends, and family – all so important and special to those in their life. I know from experience the impact it has on the patient and family, and it is not an easy ride. When my mother in law and my cousin were diagnosed it changed their entire lives forever. We are thankful that today my mother in law is cancer free, but even for her the challenges since her battle in 2014 have never stopped. And every day my cousin, Lina, continues to fight. And while she is my greatest idol and so strong as she fights Stage 4 cancer, it just feels unfair that she, her husband, and their 3 boys have to deal with any of this. Why her, why my mother in law, why anyone?
Within my power I have vowed to do everything I can to spread awareness and help to find a cure for cancer. If it is the last or only I do with this space, let it be my one mission because I cannot stand to see another person go through this turmoil again. Please join my friends and me at Words With Friends in sharing a screenshot of your latest game featuring the new pink tiles in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For every screenshot shared on social media, they will be making a donation to the Susan G. Komen Foundation of up to $100,000!!!!! That is just so incredible!!
Help me to continue to honor those we know, those we love, and those whom we support day in and day out as they fight their battle. Sending my love to you and all of your loved ones, today and everyday.