Friday, May 30, 2014

Perfect (Straight) Prom Smile

For those of you that follow me on twitter or instagram you are aware that this week is prom for my senior year of high school. Whew! Oh the preparing that I’ve had to go through, starting with my prom perfect smile. The “signature look” that has fallen upon me in the blogger world of New England is not my impeccable style but, braces. I’m the only blogger rocking the brace face look and oh boy it has it’s up and downs.

Prom is a time to remember and cherish typical picture opportunities with your besties for life (or people you don’t even care about). One thing you don’t want to regret is a flawed crooked smile. I’ve embraced my braces for my prom but here is an alternative option for teeth straightening methods that will not hinder your ‘popularity’ or reputation.

Teen brace face on the right. What a beaut.

Braces are very high maintenance and with mistakes come damage control (pain, broken brackets, wires, mouth scratches, etc.) Save the drama for your momma and try out invisalign. Invisalign Teen (just for you!) clear aligners are removable (ahh this is so exciting) AND can straighten teeth without a mouth full of metal and all the disruption and sacrafice that comes with it. Plus it is more or less the same cost as braces so make sure to mention this to your parent$ (yes I am using the money sign as a ‘s’ assuming that your parents are the money makers).

What other worries do you have about using either braces or Invisalign? I can be your myth busting guru!

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Sunday, May 25, 2014

3 Types of Jewelry to Buy for Grads

Graduation Gift Guide: You've thought about it and have decided that you want to give your grad a piece of jewelry but, want to make sure that it sends the right message. There are three types of jewelry that you can get a grad, they could be your girl/boy/best friend, roommate, teacher, etc. The idea of class rings is deteriorating so we are left to find meaningful jewelry pieces for that special someone. Besides a classic time piece or traditional string of pearls, here are the three types of jewelry to buy for graduates:

Personalized Jewelry
Forever Jewelry
Memorabilia Jewelry

1. Personalized Jewelry

In the great words of Queen Bey: If you like it then you should put a monogram on it (Oh wait, the song didn't go like that? Or did it...? Monogram.. diamond ring... same meaning). Monograms aren't only for girls, monogramed watches and rings are available for men. 

There are many reasons why monograms are a go to gift. They are classy and can be worn for almost any occasion from super-casual to professional.  

York Designs Co.
Laura of York Designs Co. kindly sent me one of her gorgeous personalized cuffs to try out for myself. I wore the cuff with a jersey to a Red Sox game, then I wore it with a blazer to a meeting. In all occasions the monogrammed cuff was a hit. Monograms personally just warm my heart. Anything with my name on it just makes me so happy... it's gotten to the extent that I collect cool name tags from functions that I attend (but that's just me).

Personalized jewelry pieces come in the form of necklaces, rings, and even earrings! York Design Co.'s  needlepoint cuffs can be personalized with city names, monograms and team symbols. They have a leather inner lining that not only makes wearing it soft and comfortable but also insures it will last for a long time.

2. Forever Jewelry

Bow bangle c/o Frosted Willow
Forever jewelry also known as staple pieces are jewelry items that will be with that person for a while. These items can be worn for anything, anytime, all ages, shapes and sizes. Forever jewelry is usually silver or gold and a simple design.  

When looking for a forever jewelry piece think, "I will love you long time." Like the adult version of friendship bracelets. Every time that person looks at this piece they'll remember you... For men a forever jewelry piece includes a leather strap bracelet or simple chain necklace. 

Frosted Willow is an online jewelry shop where you can find tons of these forever jewelry pieces. I choose bangles to showcase as 'forever jewelry' because, you can find these everywhere. Buy a bangle from Bangladesh, France or New York. They will always be here for us... -sigh- when finals are testing your sanity those trusty bangles may be the only thing keeping you from walking right out of class. Well that and the fact that an arm full of bangles make too many clacking noises when we walk.   

3. Memorabilia Jewelry

Laser cut jewelry c/o Vinca USA
You want your grad to either remember the four years you guys spent together or to remember some grand event that holds a special place in your heart. I tried to get a whole love letter engraved on a necklace but it just didn't fit. This is an alternative. For example Vinca USA's laser cute wooden necklace that says, "The key to my heart is in Boston." 

Memorabilia jewelry either means something or invokes memory, either way this gift takes a bit of thought and planning. I am the worst gift giver so I opted for the memorabilia gift. I'll either buy a souvenir from a concert we went to together or a locket with a picture of us together. I want the grad to remember what gift I got them because it touched their heart.

Which type of gift giver are you?

Grammarly yours, Semirah

If you are looking for more graduation gift ideas, here are more options:
Graduation Gift Guide: Monthly Subscription Boxes
Graduation Gift Guide: Monograms 
Graduation Gift Guide: Activewear

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Blog Tour: Mi proceso de escritura

200th post milestone! After about three and a half years I've made it to the 200th post milestone. I feel like this journey has literally taken me through blood, sweat, and tears to have the amount of success that I've accumulated. I keep telling myself that I started this blog to chart my journey as a pageant queen by sharing my appearance stories, community service projects, etc. But actually I started this blog 2 months before winning my queen title and I remember exactly where I was. I was at a Sheraton hotel with my family auditioning for some modeling agency. I was and still am tired of the child modeling industry, specifically the scheming/fake companies. Aside from that I realized that becoming someone was up to me and not up to some "agency". I have to find a water well myself, drink from the well and flourish on my own... at least this is how I've managed to be the blogger/enthusiastic young women I am today.

My life and writing skill's get better with age. I draw ideas and inspiration from being in the moment.. from going out in the world and experiencing new things. The backbone of my blog is essentially my inspirations from the {outside} world.

Kerrie from Urban Foodie Finds tagged me in this writing process blog tour. I met Kerrie the year after I finished my pageant reign. I was passionate about continuing my blog and jumped right into the local blogging community. My first event was a restaurant review in Fenway and this is where I met Kerrie and a group of other influential Boston bloggers/social media gurus.  It is about a year or two later and my relationship with not only Kerrie but also the local blogging community has bloomed exponentially.

I'd love to hear your thoughts, questions, responses... I tag YOU for the writing process blog tour. 

Question #1 for the blog tour: What am I working on?

  • Summer Planning: Blogger Events/Reviews/Campaigns
  • College Planning: Jobs/Concentration/Personal Image
  • Fitness: Get in shape. Run more. 
  • Social Media Goals: 1500 real followers on Twitter or Instagram

Question #2 for the blog tour: How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I have categorized my blog as a lifestyle blog, although I was awarded one of Boston's top 5 fashion blogs of 2013. I incorporate mostly fitness, fashion and fun events. Unlike the plethora of Boston lifestyle bloggers around me, I am young and multi-cultural. I sometimes forget that my perspective on a particular situation is completely opposite of those around but, being able to connect to the people that do understand is an amazing feeling. Being relatable is blogger rule #73 so I would say I have a B+ in that... I admit that my mind functions in an alien manner unknown to human kind.

Question #3 for the blog tour: Why do I write what I do?

Because this is my passion! I wouldn't be dedicating 90% of my social life to this if I didn't LOVE it. I love working out! I love FOOD! I love cloths.. omg and shoes.. ahhh and jewelry! Sharing all this love with you is just my duty to mankind.

Question #4 for the blog tour: How does your writing process work?

If you are a budding journalists/blogger/writer/etc. I'm pretty sure everyone has said this to you but, I will reiterate the point... invest in a beautiful notebook AND agenda. Maybe this is a feminine esthetics concept but, I spent $20 on a leather bound agenda and it is my pride and joy for planning... my life. When it comes to notebooks, I think everyone can relate to this, I have a different number for every project or class or activity, etc.

I chart down post ideas and plan out campaigns or contact anyone if I need assistance or materials to gather data or reviews. For food events I usually take notes on my phone. For fitness or fashion events, I collect business cards and use pictures to guide my writing process.

Now I would like to share this with you all and 3 featured bloggers:

Grammarly yours, Semirah D

I am not a genius writer but, the age old question that I thought someone could answer by now is: How do you get over writer's block? Sometimes I can't get one word out...

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Miniluxe Launches Boston Centric Nail Color Collection

On April Fools' Day (April 1, 2014) of this year New England salon, Miniluxe, announced that they will be launching a new line of 18 classic nail colors along with their own signature brow powder and cuticle oil. The nail polish retails for $8 (similar to Essie) and the brow powder/cuticle oil will retail for $10.

One of the greatest thing about nail lovers internationally is sharing what makes your polish fit you and why you are wearing the nail polish of your choice. By this I mean, are you a brand fanatic and pick certain nail polish brands because of pure loyalty? Was it the name of the polish? The brush of the bottle? A story behind your color choice? or even a personal connection?

Miniluxe was able to come up with a nail collection that has so many aspects to get excited about. I not only love the classic nail selection but, c'mon the Boston connection is where the love is at! Boston Strong all day long and even show your support with Miniluxe's new nail collection too!

The nail colors are all named after icons, landmarks, celebrities, etc. that have ties to Boston. All colors are 5-free which mean they are void of toxic chemicals. This means kids can use this collection as well! 

The red-ish color is {Cheers} The tan-ish color is {Boston Ballet} The clear glitter color is {Fenway Spark} The baby blue color is {The Vineyard}

Nail Polish Tower of Boston
In my opinion, each color perfectly coincides with it's given name. The first color I plan on trying out this week is "The Vineyard"!

Grammarly yours, Semirah D

*Disclaimer: Miniluxe sent me the featured items complimentary in exchange for an honest review/feature. All opinions are my own*

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Sunday, May 11, 2014

Graduation Gift Guide: Activewear

My college of choice for next year has recently revamped their fitness facilities and if you follow me on twitter you would know that some things I value are; fitness and fun ways to stay fit. I have to take into consideration the large amount of time I plan to spend in the gym, therefore, I need to keep up an acceptable gym appearance. Yes, I know... who needs to look cute at the gym? You're going their to sweat and work your butt off. I do that at school now so, I know I need to put a sliver of effort into my gym wardrobe as well.

A major part of college is making friends and being social, this being said, you may be meeting your future hubby or bestie in stained cheer shorts and an old high school tshirt.

Don't be THAT person!
To save you, your friends, and future grad from learning certain life lessons the hard way, give your grad some trendy activewear pieces.

The following options are apart of the C9 by Target collection. I had the honor of trying out these pieces for a few weeks and they have become some of my principal workout apparel. The quarter zip up works wonders during my runs and for post-gym outfits. The tank top has a sport bra top which is very convenient (especially for early bird yoga classes)!

The C9 by Target collection is wicked affordable and leaves room for you to budget other life necessities. Being able to save money and look uber stylish is one of my life goals, especially for all the grads that may have to start budgeting their finances next year.

That's me! Yogi rocking my Dona Jo Fitwear Leggings (BTW Yoga and Spin facilities/classes are held at my local mall)
Reminder we are talking about going to the gym here. Before I explain the wonders of my Dona Jo leggings I just want to confirm that we are all in the mind frame of heading to the gym... not class, a date, work, etc. I tried out the Acai Spinning Leggings from the Dona Jo fitwear shop for this post. I wanted to make sure that the leggings I recommend aren't see through, serve no purpose and/or are extremely unflattering.

Your activewear, fitness gear, athletic apparel, etc. should all motivate you to head to the gym and give them a reason for taking up space in your drawers. As you can see in the picture above, I go all out with my gym wear, and the fun part seems to be fitting as many colors into one ensemble (not recommended, I'm just weird). Any cool activewear companies that you think deserve some air time or aren't as praised as they should be?

Grammarly yours, Semirah D

Graduation Gift Guide: Monthly Subscription Boxes
Graduation Gift Guide: Monograms

Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary however, all opinions are my own. 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Del Frisco's Grille Chestnut Hill Restaurant Review

Del Frisco's entrance (elevator on left)
Location and hours available on their website

Del Frisco's famous lemon cake and motto (instagram worthy) 
Location and Service:
Del Frisco's opened up at The Street in Chestnut Hill last fall and has been a public company since 2012 (investors take note) w/ it's brother restaurants: Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steakhouse & Sullivan's Steakhouse.

Regarding service, our waiters were nice but, had a sort of quick routine. Say I wanted to ask a question about my dish, the server dropped off the food and walked away before I could.

I want to say that the food took a longer time arriving because we were a group of 10+, but hopefully that is not the case for smaller parties.

The Food

I would love to start off with their famous lemon cake but, let me tell you about lunch. Del Frisco's Grille hosted this lunch for 15 select Boston bloggers. Out of all the bloggers in the room we had mostly foodies/food diary connoisseurs, fashionistas and fitness ambassadors. This was an event where I knew almost all of the bloggers with a few exceptions so, the familiarity added to the casual vibe of Del Frisco's Grille. 

First up was cocktails and a series of appetizers. Del Frisco's puts a delicious spin on typical American restaurant dishes, so be prepared for a tasty twist on classic trays.

Above is the Cheesesteak Eggrolls ($11.50), Jumbo Lump Crabcake ($16.50), and Ahi Tacos ($14). The Cheesestak Eggrolls have a sweet and spicy chili sauce and honey mustard. This dish has to be one of their most popular appetizers because it is a bite-size version of a macho mans hearty meal. It's a small chewy ode to steak sandwiches. It's like if an egg roll and steak sub had a baby but were slightly influenced with the sloppy joe trend in the 90's. For the price, this appetizer is totally worth it.

The Jumbo Lump Crabcake is drizzled with Cajun Lobster Sauce and with it's price point, it could double as a small entree. The crabcake is very filling and has a solid taste of fresh crab. The cajun lobster sauce is a mild compliment to the overall dish, it adds needed seasons and completes the cake. 

The Ahi Tacos are filled with tuna tartare, avocado and spicy citrus mayo. For (raw) seafood lovers this plate should be your go to on your visit to Del Frisco's Grille. The spicy citrus mayo balances out the avocado and the ending crunch of the taco shell brings this whole experience into one.

The final appetizer was the Deviled Eggs, and again Del Frisco's fulfills there mission to put a tasty twist on a rather classic dish. The eggs are topped with a truffle-chive vinaigrette. This not only gives the eggs are fancier appearance but also a sweet-spicy after taste. 

 I had two of the Del Frisco's flatbread options: Shaved Brussels Sprout ($13-pictured) & Roasted Tomato ($12). Nice presentation and portion of toppings. The flatbread could serve as an appetizer or entree.  The flatbreads have a delicious fresh taste, the crust was a bit burnt (some people like that) but, I don't see my family ordering this for my little brothers with the exotic toppings.

Del Frisco's Grille have many knife and fork steak plates and I believe we tasted a medium rare selection. I don't usually order my steak medium rare but I was surprised to be introduced to succulent flavor in a my first bite.

Perfect dinner date setup over looking the Hammond Pond
This is the Seared Asian Tuna Salad: Shaved Napa Cabbage, Arugula, Chilled Noodles, Toasted Almonds, Tomato, Avocado, Ginger-Sesame Dressing. I feel like the tuna was the main attraction of this dish. The salad is good, everything has a consistence flavor, colorful presentation. Recommended with a glass of wine to give your palate a sweeter expectation. Oh wait!! There is mango in this salad, that is where the 'wow' factor is added.

And for dessert we were served these cake balls. The cake balls did not taste like cake, more like a ball of lemon icing. This dish, I assume, was only served because of the size of our party. Del Frisco's Grille's Lemon Doberge Cake comes in six layers of heavens, lemon buttercream icing and lemon glaze for $10. I would come back just to share a slice of cake with my friend.
Grammarly yours, Semirah D

Disclaimer: The bloggers and I were provided this meal complimentary in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.  

Monday, May 5, 2014

Book Review: Here to Stay by Melissa Tagg

I've been packing my bags in anticipation of sailing trips to islands off the east coast and long days on the beach. Yes, that may sound picturesque but that is only because I have absolutely no plans this summer (and it is bothering me). If you are ready to have down time this summer or have already planned out time to read a pleasure book, I have a recommendation. 

Melissa Tagg's recent novel Here to Stay is a mystery turned romantic book. We start the book off with an everyday women {who of course doesn't realize how gorgeous she is} and begin to see a turn of events once the return of town "bad boy" hits the air. The small (made up) town, Whisper Shore, can't stand to hold it's tongue for five seconds before spilling over. They breathe, feed and live in gossip which is essentially the reason why no one can get away with anything.

This book has no profanity and the closest that Autumn and Blake get to each other is a passionate kiss. Throughout the book I honestly had to keep reminding myself that the characters were 30+ years old because, at some points the adults were acting like there teenage counterpoints {i.e. cuddling at the Water Tower a.k.a teen make out spot}. 

I recommend this book for babes 18 and up, anyone under 18 probably wouldn't understand certain references. Everyone over 18 understands the struggle of relationships... 

Grammarly yours, SemirahD

Places to web-stalk Ms. Tagg:
Twitter: @Melissa_Tagg

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Saturday, May 3, 2014

Kate Spade Saturday Grand Opening

Kate Spade Saturday is having it's grand opening in Boston today! Kate Spade Saturday is a cheaper, hipper, equally as colorful version of "Kate Spade" or as I explained to my mother it's an upscale Forever 21. Kate Spade Saturday opened it's first franchise in Japan last year. So it's a baby compared to it's well established mommy "Kate Spade" shops.

Yesterday was the store's first day at the Prudential Center and they hosted a giveaway with Jetblue to Bermuda, played party jams with a live dj, and had treats to feed the customer's sweet teeth. 

Live DJ for grand opening and bumping vibes!

What is Saturday to you? Tweet me @SemirahD with #SaturdayIs for a RT!

Charging center! This is the future for normal shopping experiences. 

An ode to Queen Bey! What color is your freakum' dress? Tweet or instagram me to join the conversation! 
 Three things to do during your visit tomorrow:

1. Tweet me what think #SaturdayIS and fill out a form at the shop like the one in the picture above.

2. Try out the interactive catalogues on the ipads throughout the shop.

3. Fist pump with the live DJ.

Gorgeous visual display with interactive catalogue

"New This Week" neon attraction sign. 

Great throwback concept that attracts teens! 

Amazing selection of handbags & wallers. It's Kate Spade we're talking about here!

Local cookies for the big day! Yum nom nom nom 

My favorite is again the throwback lyrics by Freak Nasty. {When I Dip, You Dip, We Dip}

Grammarly yours, SemirahD

*Diclaimer: this is not a sponsored post, I just wanted to share the news*

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