MAC x Taraji is Coming Our Way this September

TARAJI P HENSON MAC Collaboration This collection might be small, but judging this photo, it's going to be mighty! I'm slightly bummed that we aren't getting that fab eye shadow she's rocking. It's available September 6th on maccosmetics.com. I am ALWAYS here for a Mineralized Skin Finish, and you better believe that I'll be adding them both to my collection!

MAC_ProjectTJ_LipStick_StripMeDown_white_300dpiCMYK_1

LIPSTICK Strip Me Down deep tone beige (matte) SRP: $17.00 US/$21.00 CAD

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MAC_ProjectTJ_MineralizeSkinfinish_HighlghtTheTruth_white_300dpiCMYK_1

MINERALIZE SKINFINISH Highlight The Truth soft bronze coral with golden shimmer SRP: $33.00 US/$38.00 CAD

MAC_ProjectTJ_HauteAndNaughty_TooBlackLash_white_300dpiCMYK_1and2

HAUTE & NAUGHTY TOO BLACK LASH black SRP: $23.00 US/$28.00 CAD

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MAC_ProjectTJ_187Brush_white_300dpiCMYK_1BRUSH 187 Duo Fibre Face SRP: $42.00 US/$51.00 CAD

Traveling to Puerto Rico with an Infant: Learn from my Mistakes

28942874666_36559299b4_o Our wonderful vacation in Puerto Rico has concluded, and the entire family had a fantastic time. Seriously, it was much more laid back and comfortable than I realized. I'm a pretty anxious person, and I have to admit, I stressed out A LOT about taking our baby out of the country.  This trip solidified a bigger thirst for travel. I am absolutely building travel into my year! I have to admit that I made a lot of mistakes while we were there. Here's what I wish I did.

Wins

I purchased a backpack for me to use as an airplane carry on, a diaper bag and a purse. This was an absolute lifesaver. I can't imagine carrying a tote bag and a purse or diaper bag while walking those narrow sidewalks, or climbing the fort, or being on the plane.

I spent weeks debating on bringing the car seat. I ended up leaving it at home, and it worked out fine. Anytime we got in a car, I wore him in his baby carrier and strapped us both in with the seatbelt. We took four trips, 

Three types of formula-- individual packs, ready made bottles and a small canister. We bought a 24 pack of bottled waters, and I make his bottles on demand.

We carried a box of teething crackers with us while we ate. I only brought three duo sets, but ended up buying (and using) an entire set later. While we were there, he learned to eat puffs!

Mistakes

It would have been better if I had a lighter stroller for travel. I've been using the large Graco, our everyday stroller from home. It's large and clunky. I'm not sure that I need to invest in one now, since we won't be taking anymore trips this year, and he'll probably grow out of it by next year. Also, For the flight, I should have checked the stroller at the plane, not with our luggage. We always had to wait longer for it, and there was a definite risk that it would be dirty when we arrived. Plus, I could have let Cam hang out in it while we were waiting to board.

I read posts about bringing the pack and play, and I really wish I did. The hotel crib was pretty crappy-it's metal and looks like something from a kiddie psych ward. I would have loved if Cam slept in his Pack and Play. Also, it would have been great for us to have it by the pool. I basically have to hold him on the lawn chair, and it gets annoying.

Bath time was definitely interesting. I basically just held him in the shower and washed him in my arms. Slippery, a little scary and basically ineffective for the both of us. I'm a slight germophobe, so I should have brought a travel tub. 

We packed three onsies/outfits per day. He ended up having three leftover outfits. I'm so glad I overpacked! Cam had four poop blowouts, one of which happened while we were touring El Morro Fort.  I ran out of my travel bag of wipes, and left his emergency onsie at the hotel. Poor kid.

I purchased thick, goopy inspect spray and sunscreen. Bad move. My husband bought insect repellent and sunscreen in spray form and it was super helpful! We sprayed ourselves down in only a few seconds, and before you know it, we were out the door. 

IMG_0868

I'd absolutely, 100% plan on going back in the next couple of years. In fact, I'm hoping to take a four day vacation with my husband to celebrate our third anniversary. We stayed at the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino, and let me tell you, they have the absolute friendliest staff EVER. The hotel is extremely family friendly, and my daughter loved the water slide, pool and beach that were just a few quick steps away from our room. I definitely recommend it!

 

Media Kit Crash Course for Bloggers and Brands (Free Download)

the media kit crash courseIt's no secret that I'm passionate about media kits. They're absolutely essential for growing your blog or brand, especially if you want to reach out and work with brands, sponsors, etc. I send out my media kit a few times a month, and believe me, if I didn't have one, I wouldn't be able to get so many awesome opportunities. Creating a media kit is one of those things that I constantly put off, but once it was done, I felt so much better. Carve out an hour or so, and make sure that you've got everything on your new (or existing) media kit! Click the "read more" button to get started.

If you're ready to get your media kit together, enter your email address below and I'll send you the media kit crash course!

The Best Bottles for My Baby

medelabottles I had no idea how many brands there were for babies. When I had to do the newborn prep, I was absolutely overwhelmed. I couldn't believe there were so many options! I tried almost every brand- Avent, Dr. Brown's, Gerber, Lansinoh, NUK, Nuby, Tommee Tiippee...you name it. But by far, the best brand was Medela. These bottles come in two sizes, 5 oz and 8 oz. They sell three nipple sizes, so the milk flow gets stronger as baby grows. The one thing that this bottle excelled at, for my child, was the lack of leaking. Every other bottle seemed to create a stream of milk down Cameron's cheek, nestling into his neck.

So if you happen to need a baby shower gift for someone, or just want to try them for yourself or a friend, I whole-heartedly recommend them! I threw out every other brand's bottle last week, and my mom and I use Medela exclusively. If you're interested in getting a set, check them out here at Target.com.

*This post includes affiliate links.

Our First Family Vacation to Puerto Rico!

Photo courtesy of Caribbean Journal Okay guys. Not going to lie. My anxiety is through the roof! We're going on vacation with the baby, and the thought of a four hour flight and being away from home without our essentials makes me craaaaazy nervous. Don't even get me started on Zika. I have so many questions to search for:

  • Do I need to bring a car seat?
  • Is it smarter for me to travel with formula or buy it there?
  • Do I need to drown my family in bug repellent?
  • What's the best sunscreen for baby?
  • How will his sleeping be affected?

I've got three packing checklists from around the web, and I'm dedicating my weekend to packing and cleaning. Whew. I was able to conquer a lot of my baby fears, so I know everything will be okay.

On the other hand, I'm getting more and more excited day by day! I don't want to think about work, cleaning the house or adulting during the entire trip. When we get back, I'm printing out all of my pics and making small scrapbook dedicated just to for the vacay (at least that's what I'm telling myself). If you have any tips for traveling with baby, please share!

Be sure to follow us on Instagram as we go on our Caribbean adventure!

Creating A Perfect Morning Routine (And Other Essential Skills)

Join Skillshare This post includes affiliate links. If you decide to sign up, my blog will make a small commission that will help pay the blog bills. As always, Thank you for supporting The Haute Blogger!  

You know what? We're living in a time where you have to show your value as an employee. It's not okay to do just basic work anymore. You're supposed to learn new things, add to your skill set, then move on to the next new, great (hopefully higher paying) gig. Most people think it's important to have higher education on your side, and when you look at many jobs out there, you'll see that employers think that too. However, there are many, many jobs where the skills that you need can be learned right at home on your own computer (or phone or tablet!).

I'm partnering with Skillshare to bring you some very cool (fun! quick!) classes to enhance your skill set, get your brain moving, and for you (and me) to get the best out of this year!  There are plenty of free classes available, but If you use this special link, you'll get three months of premium classes for only 99 cents. Yep, less than a buck. I used this same offer a few months ago, and signed up to become a premium member without hesitation. Here are five videos to get you started:

An Online Skillshare Class by Jeff Finley

 

An Online Skillshare Class by Brit + Co

An Online Skillshare Class by Elle Luna

An Online Skillshare Class by Jeff Finley

 

An Online Skillshare Class by Kate Arends

 

An Online Skillshare Class by Monika Kanokova