My Favorite VMA 2015 Looks!

Let’s talk about the VMAs!

I didn’t watch them.

I’ve never been big on award shows. Attending one might be a lot of fun but watching it from home? Pass! Hence. my delayed VMA blog post. I wasn’t in a rush to be the first one to talk about it, heck, I’m not even going to talk about the show. I just want to talk about some of my fav outfits!… that I googled a day after the show had aired, Lol.

fifth-harmonyAll of the Fifth Harmony girls looked really cute. Their dresses were fun, sexy, and VMA appropriate. I would have loved to wear the cream colored ruffle dress on the right. I also like those nude pumps she has on, I really need a pair of nude heels.

demi-lovatoDemi’s dress felt like a flash back to Britney Spears in the 90’s but that’s why I liked it. Come to think of it, even Britney Spears looked like a 90’s version of herself at the VMAs! They both looked good though and I can totally imagine myself wearing this to an MTV award show! You know… when I’m a famous singer and no longer tone-deaf and poor.

tori-kelly“Just a California girl with big dreams
Thinking maybe they’ll let me sing songs about real things
And baby who knows maybe I can sell out shows without taking off my clothes
God made me sexy I don’t care if only I know”

Tori Kelly! I’ve had her song on repeat lately. She looked great, I wish I owned this outfit because it’d be perfect for date night drinks at a classy lounge.

kat-grahamDid Kat Graham borrow this dress from me? I think she might have. Those shoes are definitely mine, Lol. This seriously looks like something you would find in my closet. Although, I probably would have worn it to a birthday party and not to an award show. It’s cute and I like it, but it feels a little too casual for the VMAs. Maybe it’s because it has no wow factor? Tori’s outfit (previous image) was also toned down but it had awesome looking lace and leg flaunting shorts!

Vanessa-Hudgens-vmasThis is such a beautiful dress. I want to wear it, right now and just…brush my hair and eat organic foods it. It’s the perfect base to an ethereal goddess look. Vanessa Hudgens is totally killin’ it! It does seem a little too boho for the occasion but it’s sooo pretty!

Did you watch the VMAs? Anything important happen that I should know about? Also, what would you wear if you were invited to walk the red carpet, something bold and flashy or something more elegant and flowy? Let me know in the comments!

Talk to you soon!

Love,

Niki

Coffee on the go

Gevalia-Iced-coffee-drink“I participated in an Ambassador Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Gevalia Iced Coffee with Almond Milk. I received product samples to facilitate my review as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.”

Do you guys remember when we chatted about Gevalia Iced Coffee with Almond Milk awhile back? I was sharing with you how much I liked all the flavors (mocha, vanilla, and caramel). We’ll I’m still loving its sweet and creamy taste but I also appreciate it for a whole new reason now.

My life lately has been jam-packed with tons of weekend work, late night editing, and wedding planning. This past weekend is a great example of how crazy my schedule can be. I worked as a producer on a film that my fiance wrote and we had two 12-hour days of shooting and one “short” 8-hour day. When you start to consider 8 hours a small amount of time, there’s a good chance you are working too hard. Now, add all of that to my regular 9 to 5 work week and you have seven days of pure madness! Lol.

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Luckily, I was able to take a nice little kick of caffeine with me to the film set. Gevalia Iced Coffee with Almond Milk comes in recyclable Tetra-Pak packaging which makes it ideal for anyone on the go. It also comes in the perfect single-serve size (11 ounces) so you can easily throw one in your bag as you’re running out of the door.

Long days of filming can be tough on anyone but the 9 grams of protein in each carton (11.1 oz.) helped keep me going strong.

If your daily routine keeps you super busy, you should definitely check out Gevalia Iced Coffee with Almond Milk. No coffee maker needed, all you have to do is pour it over ice and enjoy. You can also treat your family to a glass by picking up the multi-serve carton (33.8 oz.).

Here are all the links you’ll need to learn more about Gevalia Iced Coffee with Almond Milk:

Website: www.GevaliaExperience.com

Facebook: www.Facebook.com/GevaliaCoffee

Twitter: https://twitter.com/gevalia

I hope you’ll give this delicious coffee a try! And if you taste it, be sure to come back and let me know what you thought of it.

*Only Where Facilities Exist. Visit recyclecartons.com to see if recyclable in your area.

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Honest Thoughts on Pinterest Living Rooms

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What I Love: The brightness and heaps of white in this living room give me a comforting sense of organization. I also like that everything appears to smell like fresh laundry. I’m not sure how something can look like a smell, but it does. Just look at this space and breathe in, aaaaahhh…. fresh linen with a hint of spring flowers.

What I Don’t Love: I’m probably going to have to quit my job just to keep up with the dusting of that shelf. Also, where is all the stuff you can actually touch? This room seems to be full of display items and not things you can interact with like books, magazines, etc. Someone lives here right?

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What I Love: Oh la la very pretty and it looks a little more lived in. The soft pops of yellow are the perfect accent color. I’m also happy to see a throw blanket on the couch. We have about 5 blankets on our wedding registry, I’m always cold!

What I Don’t Love: I don’t like the sneaky way that light colored barn looking furniture crept in. Something about the color and smoothness of it gives it a flimsy, non-durable look. The little side stump table or the coffee table would have been cute on their own but pair them with the desk set in the back and it’s overkill. Back to the barn Betsy.

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What I Love: The soft and cozy look of this space is ideal for netflix nights, lounging around on lazy Sunday mornings, and it’s practically nap-inducing! I also really like the variety of textures from sparkly sequins to the thick ruffled blanket hanging off of the side the couch.

What I Don’t Love: Too much of a good thing. This living room might be on the next episode of Hoarders, the pillow edition. It’s nice to have a little structure, even if you’re working with a “cozy” theme. Also, that coffee table is jammed right into the couch! Listen, if you only have 500sq. ft. to work with, accept it and buy the appropriately sized furniture.

cool-living-room

What I Love: A space with a unique color palette, win! It also has less of a girly vibe and more of a “yes, my husband also lives here and is not embarrassed by this room” vibe. Too often I, unintentionally, attempt to create a girly space. While registering for bathroom decor I tried to pick a fluffy shower curtain and bejeweled toothbrush holder. I couldn’t help it, I like when things sparkle. This living room has furry pillows, candles, and flowers but it doesn’t seem overly frou-frou. Mind you, I like me some frou-frou but my fiance, not so much.

What I Don’t Love: If you had to sum up this decor with one word would it be… Gryffindor?! Although I like the color palette it’s not as soothing as I wish it was. It feels a little more officey and a lot less open and inviting.  I’m also anxious about the shelf packed with frames, seems so precarious and impractical….. this is an earthquake state!

And there you have it, my honest thoughts on Pinterest living rooms! I also feel compelled to say that most of the inspiration I’ve been finding seems way out of my price range. Do you feel like it’s tough to find budget friendly inspiration? Why is everybody but us a millionaire?!

This fall, I’ll be decorating my very first apartment with my husband! And we have a real-world budget so be sure to come back to see us turn our little place into a home without having go on an all top-ramen noodle diet to afford it!

Talk to you soon!

Love,

Niki

Take Your Turkey Sandwich to the Next Level!

“I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Influence Central for P.A.N. Cornmeal. I received product samples as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.”

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I’m back today with my last post in the P.A.N. Cornmeal series! Such a bummer, there are so many amazing recipes left to try! But don’t worry food explorers, you can always find a new cornmeal recipe to tackle by visiting P.A.N.’s page HERE.

On our first cornmeal adventure we cooked up a gourmet Lobster Pizza with Cornmeal Crust and then we sweetened things up a bit with delightful Berry Brunch Bites. And today, we are going to be elevating a a simple sandwich into a mouthwatering Arepa.

Arepas are very popular in Venezuela, but here in the states we’ve been eating our sad little lunchtime sandwiches without even realizing we had a delicious alternative, Lol.

For this recipe you will only need a few things. We will be stuffing our arepas with turkey but cornmeal flatbread pairs well with a variety of meats and toppings. So feel free to follow along as we make our bread and then you can get creative!

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Ingredients:


2 cups of P.A.N Cornmeal

2 1/2 cups warm water

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

Non-stick cooking spray

Desired Filling: turkey, avocado, and American cheese( other ideas: grilled steak & refried beans, shredded chicken and potato medallions, pastrami….the possibilities are endless!)

Directions:


1. Cover the bottom of a medium sized skillet with non-stick cooking spray.

2. Combine P.A.N. Cornmeal, salt, and warm water together in a mixing bowl. Make sure to get all the lumps out.

3. Knead your dough a few times and then divide it into 8 equal pieces.

4. Turn the burner under your skillet on to medium heat.

5. Roll each portion of your dough into a ball in your hands. Then gently flatten into a 1/2″ thick circle.

6. Place 4 arepas on to your skillet and cook until golden brown or about 6 minutes on each side.

7. Remove the arepas and place them on a paper towel lined plate to cool.

8. Spray the bottom of your skillet again and add the remaining 4 arepas.

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Once everything has had a chance to cool down, slice your arepas in half so that you create 2 circular slices. These pieces will work as the two side of your tasty upgraded sandwich.

The only thing left to do is add your fillings. I added two slices of turkey, one slice of cheese, and a few chunks of avocado.

My turkey arepa was so delicious. The P.A.N cornmeal was very moist and savory. I even ate an arepa without any stuffing because of how tasty it was all on its own.

I hope you guys give this quick and easy recipe a try. It only takes a few more minutes than a traditional sandwich but your taste buds will definitely thank you! Also, visit P.A.N.’s page to check out other fun recipes: CLICK HERE

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Interview: Graphic Designer Nicole Martinez

July30th2Hello there!

I am neck deep in all things wedding-related right now! There’s about two months to go and our to-do list gets longer daily. Lol.

Today I wanted to introduce you to a very talented graphic artist who was not only able to create exactly what we needed, she also made the process so stress-free and easy that I wanted to hire her to coordinate the entire wedding.

Most of you joined us on our wedding invitation hunt (here) and although we ending up finding the perfect invite, we were a little stumped about what to do with our RSVPs. We had somewhat unique requirements because our guests are responding through our wedding website.

Thankfully, my paths crossed with the amazing designer behind YWCountdown.com, Nicole Martinez. Right from the start, working with her was a breeze. She responded to emails promptly and was able to design a beautiful RSVP card with just a few pieces of information.

I would love for you guys to get to know this wonderful women a little better so let’s dive right in to today’s interview.

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LOVENIKI: Hi! Please introduce yourself to Love, Niki readers

NICOLE: Hello, my name is Nicole Martinez and I currently reside in Temecula, CA

LOVENIKI: Tell us a little bit about your business and how you got started.

NICOLE: I recently got married, September 20th 2015 and I decided to design my own wedding stationery. I received a lot of complements, which gave me the idea to start my own business.  I combined my entrepreneurial tendencies with my customer service experience to form my company Your Wedding Countdown. After 6 months, I was ranked 5 stars on Etsy and Wedding Wire and received a ” 2015 Couples’ Choice Award.”

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LOVENIKI: That’s very impressive! What is it that sets Your Wedding Countdown apart from other businesses?

NICOLE: I treat every single one of my clients as if they are apart of my family. Not only can I create their stationery products for free, but I am willing to answer any questions or offer my advice on any wedding topic.

LOVENIKI: I love that you treat everyone as family. Weddings are such monumental life events and every bride wants to work with someone who cares about her wedding as much as she does. So how does the ordering process typically work?

NICOLE: The ordering process is extremely easy. If a client is interested in purchasing a template that’s already completed and displayed on my website, they’ll receive a free sample. The free image sample is emailed to them within 24 hours and it will include their color, font or any other changes they’ve requested. From there, they have the option to purchase their item through as an invoice sent via email or through my website.

I also create custom-made save the dates, wedding invitations, programs, or menus at no extra cost to my clients. Processing takes around one week. Once the design is ready, I send a draft and confirm with my client that they are 100% satisfied. From that point, I do require a small deposit in order to begin fulfilling their order.

LOVENIKI: Is there anything a couple can do to help this process along? What should they have ready when they inquire about custom design work?

NICOLEIt is very helpful when a client provides me with their wedding colors, theme, wedding venue location and an idea of what they are looking for in their custom design.

LOVENIKI: It’s amazing that you can create something with just a few simple facts! When it comes to the future of your business have you given any thought to where you would like to be in 5 years?

NICOLE: Absolutely. I want the business to have continued its growth and hopefully, I’ll be in the process of opening a “backyard themed” wedding venue!

LOVENIKI: Nicole, it was such a pleasure working with you and I adore your wedding venue idea. I will be happily recommending you to my friends, family, and everyone else I know! I, along with the Love, Niki audience, wish you tons of success in all of your ventures. Thank you so much for hanging out with us today on the blog.

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Interested in custom design work for your wedding? Visit Nicole using the links below!

WEBSITE: YWCountdown.com

INSTAGRAM: @YWCountdown

TWITTER: @YWCountdown

P.S. I can’t wait to show you guys what our RSVP cards look like! As soon as we send them out to our guests, I’ll be posting them all over social media!

Summer Stay-cation

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.#ShareYourSummer #CollectiveBias #ad

picnic-blanketSummer is synonymous with tropical vacations, family getaways, and exotic excursions. It is the time of year most of us have been saving up for. We set a little aside each paycheck to help fund our well-deserved break from the daily grind.

This is summer is very different because I am spending it with the man who is about to become husband! I can barely believe how quickly time is passing. With all of our mini DIY wedding projects and meetings the weeks pass like minutes.

We have also been working weekends in addition to our regular jobs to help us pay for the big day so we haven’t had much time to relax and unwind. Since there isn’t a lot of extra money for a big summer getaway so instead packing our bags and heading out of town, we decided to have a little stay-cation!

To make it extra special we decide to personalize it. We went to Walmart to pick out Coke bottles with our names on them. Walmart has the widest and most organized selection of Coca-Cola personalized 20 oz bottles. Thankfully finding what we were looking for was pretty easy. The Coke display has a clear window to help you spot your name in the bin. Also, this year is Coke’s biggest campaign so they have 1,000 names printed on bottles.

Share-a-coke-smile coke-container-walmart summer-fun-cokecoke-windowWill and I also picked out a few of the new REESE’S Peanut Butter Cups with fun words on them (These cool REESE’S Cups with words are exclusive to Walmart!).It was sort of like picking out sweet and edible messages for one another, Lol.

Everything else we were able to gather from around the house.We grabbed a soft blanket for us to layout on in the backyard and scooped out some ice from the freezer to keep our drinks and REESE’s cups cold.

coke-bottle-namessunflower-picnicWill also decided to swing by a local flowers shop to grab a few pretty flowers. I loved how they added to the whole set up!

We had a wonderful day in the sun. The future Mr. & Mrs. Camacho soaked in the day as they sipped their chilled Coke’s and nibbled on delicious REESE’s cups. And it was completely budget-friendly.

Sharing a Coke & a sweet chocolate message with someone special is a great way to spend a summer day. If there is a loved one you’ve been wanting to spend time with, I suggest you swing by Walmart on your way to their house and grab a personalized bottle of Coke and a REESE’s peanut butter cup with a message on it.

staycation-ideasThank you for reading today’s special post!

For more Share A Coke Enjoy A REESES inspiration: CLICK HERE

To find your name on a bottle: CLICK HERE

Pamper Your Pup!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #AmorBeneful #CollectiveBias
Beneful-incredibites

Animals have always had a soft spot in my heart and it’s not hard to imagine why. I grew up in a household that was rarely without a pet. My brother and I were lucky enough to be allowed to raise and care for a variety of critters from iguanas and fish to bunnies and kittens.

For the majority of my youth, I was convinced that I was destined to become a veterinarian. I even had a toy doctor’s kit with a medical grade stethoscope that my mom gave me! I’m sorry to say that I didn’t pursue the field of study but that has had no impact on mi amor por los animales.

So today we’re taking some time to pamper a special little pup! I would like to introduce you guys to Baxter. He’s been a member of our family for about 6 years now and he is my mom’s third child, Lol. Since he is the older dog of our household, I thought he might need a little extra attention. Our new puppy is a handful so Baxter has had to share us a lot more than he’s used to.

Because I’m on a budget ( who isn’t these days?!) and I wanted plenty of selection, I decided to head to Target. They have lots of cute dog accessories….. and  they also have plenty  of cute human accessories! Okay, I know I was going there for Baxter but I did spend a little time shopping for myself. Why is everything there so adorable?

Once I dragged myself away from the array of new purses, I hit the doggie aisle. I wanted to get Baxter something that would upgrade his look but I also wanted to get him something that was good for him. I picked out Beneful Incredibites Chicken for him for a few reasons. First, I read that it contains protein-rich nutrition with tender & crunchy mini bites for small dogs. Sounds perfect right? I also loved that it had real ingredients. Incredibites with Real Chicken is accented with carrots, sweet potatoes & spinach.

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Pets don’t make their own dietary decisions, so it’s important that we make the right ones for them. A healthy food upgrade is a great way to pamper your pup.

To update Baxter style, I decided to treat him to a new customized food bowl and a bright new bow tie. There are a lot of ways you can customize a bowl of your own. I used scratch off graphics that I found at Target. The craft aisle has plenty of paint, glue, and stickers to help inspire you.

puppy-love diy-doggie-bowl Healthy-dog-food

I hope you enjoyed this fun doggy post! I’m glad I got to spoil Baxter just a little!

If you’d like to upgrade your dog’s food to Beneful Incredibites, you may want to check out these fun events! They’ll each have an instagram vending machine.

You’ll also be able to check out a Target in-store demo. They’ll be happening at various Target locations in the LA area on 8/22/15, 11 am to 4 pm. There will be free samples given out of Incredibites Chicken and flyers with $2 coupon. You can also check for a Target Coupon in the newspaper on 8/2/15 for Beneful (Target locations in LA area only).

Are you excited to treat your pup? Learn more about Beneful Incredibites on their Mobile Site on your smartphone or on their Desktop Site when using your home computer. You can also verify product availability at Target.com.

I also have a few coupons for you guys!

 

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Cornmeal Berry Brunch Bites

Brunch Ideas“I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Influence Central for P.A.N. Cornmeal. I received product samples as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.”

It’s time for another food post! I hope all my fellow foodies are enjoying the recipes I’ve been sharing on here lately.

Last time I showed you guys how to make a savory lobster pizza with a cornmeal crust.  Today we’ll be creating something completely opposite of that. As I had mentioned before, P.A.N. cornmeal is an extremely versatile ingredient. It is a must-have pantry staple that allows you to add a unique twist on your favorite dishes.

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Summer Outfit: Floral Romper & Thunder Thighs

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Guess Romper From Macy’s: Similar Options

I just want to take a moment and thank the girl who invented the crossed leg pose because it is the only thing that is helping my current #ThunderThigh status! Lol. I’ve been working out and my muscles are definitely getting bigger but I also haven’t been eating as clean as I want to so I’m basically layering fat on a growing muscle… lovely. Every brides worst nightmare.

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Make Delicious Iced Coffee at Home!

Gevalia-iced-coffee-with-almond-milk“I participated in an Ambassador Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Gevalia Iced Coffee with Almond Milk. I received product samples to facilitate my review as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.”

Wouldn’t it be awesome to wake up to delicious iced coffee everyday and sip it on your way to work? Heck, why even go into work? You could just relax on your yacht and work on your tan.

I can make that happen. Well, at least the first part! Lol. Usually Will and I only get to enjoy iced coffee during  the weekend.

This happens for two reasons 1) I barely have time to comb my hair in the morning, let alone make iced coffee before work and 2) I don’t even know how to make it! Seriously, is it just regular coffee over ice? Is there a magic java genie I need to summon?

gevalia-iced-coffee-pour gevalia-iced-coffeeDrinking-coffeeJava genie…pppffft…I’m so dramatic! You can probably just google an iced coffee recipe but you’ll still need to spend time actually making it and the dilemma of hair brushing vs. caffeine fix will still occur every morning before work. So what’s the easiest way to enjoy a chilled glass of coffee in the a.m.? Gevalia Iced Coffee with Almond Milk!

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