Monday My Way or Eastern Promises?

Hi everyone,

I hope you all had an amazing holiday celebration with your friends, colleagues, families and loved ones. And I hope you all keeping warm and cozy in this cold, blustery weather!

Consider staying warm and refreshing your taste buds with shōchū, a Japanese distilled beverage. Women and businessmen are promoting this hot trend. Low calorie, it will amaze you with its great taste and healthful properties.

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I don’t know about you, but my work schedule is demanding. I often work weekends. So, when I have a day off, I like to enjoy it to the fullest. Last Monday was one of those days. I was thrilled to be invited to the Japanese Vodka (Shōchū) Tasting and Wagyu Pairing event in the West Village.

I absolutely love that area of the city with its abundance of unique, small boutiques and stores offering exquisite products. Beautiful Tibet Inc., for example, is a great store. It offers quite a rich selection of artesian jewelry, exotic incense products and many other Tibetan finds.

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Cube-cut garnet necklace with beads and adjustable toggle clasps, dangling chandelier earrings and essence sticks were just a few of the things that caught my eye.

Shopping and attending the event were great ways to recharge in the middle of a brutal winter.

It was so cold that day that I ran from one boutique to another. It was like marathon training! Besides sampling 10 varieties of shōchū, I met interesting people and learned about Japanese customs. It was fascinating to watch an incredible traditional Japanese brush calligraphy (shodō) performance.

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You might be interested to learn that, in Japan, shōchū is consumed 1.5 times more than sake.

It’s understandable since it’s low calorie, sugarless and packed with nutritional properties.

More importantly, this drink does not include impurities. Therefore, it does not cause hangovers.  

Aokage, the shōchū made of barley, is a good place to start. I loved its incredibly smooth, burned flavor of barley and lasting cacao aroma aftertaste.

Fight the winter cold and share experiences together with shōchū! 

Himalayan Gold: Purest Salt on Earth

 

If you follow my Instagram profile, you may have noticed that I explore many health food options, such as smoothies, green tea, vegan and gluten-free products.

One recent discovery is Himalayan salt. It has so many beneficial qualities. You probably are aware of the harmful effects of table salt on our bodies. You might be pleasantly surprised to find out that Himalayan salt is the purest salt available due to lack of toxins or pollutants. Containing all 84 elements found in our bodies, this salt promotes blood sugar cells, natural sleep, healthy PH balance  and many other beneficial properties.

On top of all this, this salt is more than 250 million years old!!

What are your thoughts on Himalayan salt and its products?

 

Himalayan Gold

 

“Stop And Smell the Roses…”

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Devil’s Dozen – Are You a Collector or a Hoarder?

Do you have a friend or family member who likes to collect things? Perhaps, you are a collector yourself? What are your treasures – art, jewelry, posters, antiques? Maybe you like designer sunglasses or bathing suits?

We all love the thrill of receiving packages in the mail. The beautiful pair of Prada shoes.
Or the handcrafted stacking bracelet that we purchase with every new memorable moment or special occasion.

It makes us feel alive and happy. We believe that we deserve it. Maybe you tell yourself that it’s investment? Then, it’s a double joy.

While it’s true that certain designer clothes and bags can be an investment, quite often our purchases get out of control.

Here are 12 red flags indicating that you should perhaps reign in your habit:

1. Your wardrobe contains new items with tags. You’ve never worn these things and you resist selling them to make space for other items.

2. Sometimes you effortlessly display pieces as part your “home décor” and share exciting purchase stories with friends and family. You also go into lengthy background about the fabric’s features, tailoring and designer. (Advice: consider using your talents in the luxury goods sales sector.)

3. A purchase from a new designer is like a new love affair. You completely dive into the designer’s world and every piece becomes precious.
4. Your clothes pile up on your sofa, bed and chairs. You are late each morning because you were not able to find your favorite Alexander McQueen dress.
5. You friend calls you a “hoarder” while helping you organize your mess.
6. You skip lunch because you were so absorbed in hunting for “precious” pieces on Ebay.
7. Receiving a package in the mail is reminiscent of Christmas. You even accidentally call the postman “Santa.”
8. Your online shopping boxes pile up in your room and you continue to trip over them.
9. You have dark circles under your eyes because you’ve spent nights shopping an online sample sale.
10. You take a risk buying clothes with a no return policy. You don’t worry about whether they will fit. You just get excited about the value and the low price.
11. You’d rather spend money on another pair of designer sunglasses than a trip to the grocery store.
12. You have serious debt problems.
Have you ever experienced any of above listed symptoms?

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Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award

 

Dear friends and fashionistas,

I hope you all had an amazing summer and are looking forward to fall with its wonderful holidays, joy and inspiration.

Great news! Last week, Sweet Magnolia Chic blogger Marcy B. who nominated me for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award.

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Here are the rules…

– Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site.

 

– Put the award logo on your blog.

 

– Answer 10 questions.

 

– Make up ten new questions for your nominees to answer.

 

– Nominate 10 people

Now I nominate:

April Nunez

A Spoonful Of Style

Filippa Levemarks

No Rule, Just Style

The Fashion Huntress

Camilla Delacoe

Jessica & Love

Russian Martini

Reversecommuter

The Fashion Dress

 

Here my answers to Marcy’s questions:

1. Where do find inspiration?

Everywhere. Lately, I am particularly inspired by trends from various fields, including technology and business. I like to connect the dots and foresee what will happen next. The future fascinates me.

 2. Who is your biggest role model?

American designer Alexander Wang. I love his aesthetics, yet he also inspires me as a person. This designer, despite his global renown, decided to work for French fashion house Balenciaga. This move, including his upcoming collaboration with H&M, is inspirational. I think no matter how great you are, there is always an opportunity to stretch and grow. There is no ceiling.

 3. What is your favorite movie?

“The Hunger Games.”

4. Most embarrassing moment, or outfit?!

I fell off a motorcycle in front of everyone during riding practice class. It was quite ego bruising.

5. Name one place in the world you hope to go one day.

Morocco. Moroccan design aesthetics fascinate me. Quite often, I imagine myself there enjoying the local food, music festivals and discovering products produced by local artisans.

 6. What is your favorite Disney movie?

“The Jungle Book.”

 7. Favorite trend for the fall?

Knits. I am craving cozy, yet chic items this season.

 8. What is your most favorite holiday and why?

Thanksgiving Day. It’s a great time to express gratitude for what we have. I’ve learned that it’s so important to have appreciation and not take things for granted. Especially people who love us. And, of course, I love all the delicious food that the holiday has to offer. I can also make a great traditional Thanksgiving Day turkey! 🙂

 9. What is one item of clothing you can’t live without?

Leather jacket.

 10. Chocolate, or vanilla?

Chocolate, of course.

 

Here are my questions:

1. Where do you find inspiration?

2. If you would have an opportunity to have a lunch with an influential / famous person, who it would be?

3. Who is your favorite designer(s)?

4. What is your most annoying habit?

5. What is your favorite item at home?

6. Are you a night owl or morning person?

7. What is the most memorable moment from your favorite movie?

8. What is the last book you read?

9. Which is your favorite quote?

10. What song best describes you?

Have an awesome weekend!

Lena.

Treasured Home Possessions

 

We all have few home items we consider absolute necessities.

 

Sometimes, it’s difficult for me to identify these, because I’m constantly on the move. Therefore, I try to keep things as simple and utilitarian as possible.

 

I treasure items that remind me of my past experiences.

 

For example, I lived in Italy for a while and I miss the aromas of homemade espresso and fresh basil from the balcony.

 

In most Italian homes, a Bialetti Moka Express Stovetop Espresso Coffee Maker graces the kitchen counter. It’s relatively inexpensive compared to most espresso machines. I bought one when I returned to the states and I use it almost every day. Nothing is more enjoyable than the aroma of quality coffee first thing in the morning.

Another Part Of Me: Bialetti Expresso Maker

 

I love taking a sip from my favorite cup. I bought this one online. It’s modern, sleek and functional. 

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My CB2 Skyline Desk Organizer also is an essential. It holds pens, pencils and even a phone. I love its sleek architectural design.

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One of my friend-entrepreneurs gave me a lovely gift — Great Ideas Napkin Sketchbook — that I keep on my coffee table. She believes (and she is correct) that the best ideas come at during happy hour. She recounted how she developed a business opportunity with a partner by jotting notes down on a napkin.

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 Great Ideas Napkin Sketchbook

Another home décor piece I love is a gigantic, chic antique mirror with shelves attached to a fireplace. Made from walnut, it has an insanely fascinating design.

I never was into antique furniture. I always preferred the modern design. Yet, when I look at  this mirror, I imagine the craftsmanship, the stories behind it and its hidden history.

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What are your treasured possessions?

 

 

 

 

Jump on the Creative Train and Embrace your Impulses

 

Visualize the last time that you ran for a departing train. Do you remember the adrenalin rush? Maybe you tripped as you galloped up the stairs. Your hair flew in every direction. You dropped your newspaper and spilled your coffee.

And it didn’t matter.

You made the train.

Don’t you love taking the chances? When is the last time you took gamble?

As we grow older, we have more responsibilities and take more calculated risks.

I think it’s important to remember that there is a balance.

Entrepreneurs are risk-takers by nature. Filled with enthusiasm, they are passionate. They make multiple mistakes in order to create something significant and valuable.

That said, while taking chances is wonderful, we also have to be careful of perpetually rushing to make the train. It’s the curse of being impatient. Learn to be a bit more patient and focus on the nature of your actions.

So, the next time when you plan to rush toward the departing train, make sure it’s the right one.

If by chance you jumped on the wrong one, the correction is simple: get off at the next station and change your direction.

Love,

Lena

 

Italy: Subway