July 28, 2014

Bay Area Bites: Comal

A couple of weeks ago my Mom and Aunt met me for dinner after work. We decided to head to Comal in Downtown Berkeley for a delicious meal!

Comal is literally steps from the Downtown Berkeley BART station so it's super easy to get to. They have a great ambiance to the restaurant which features a patio in the back!  

We started off with some amazing drinks - I got a SPF 2020 and my aunt got a margarita. My drink was perfectly fresh, and I love anything with St. Germain. My aunt commented that it was one of the best margs she has ever had. 

We sat in the patio and got chips, salsa (three kinds), guac, and spicy jicima and cucumbers to start. The jicama was fresh and spiced perfectly. The salsas were all so different with so much flavor! 

For our main course we decided on one of their dinner plates that you can split between 2-3 people. We got turkey mole (again with three different kinds!) which also came with rice, beans, greens, and hand-made tortillas. 

What I loved about Comal was the do-it-yourself attitude. The meal gave you options of what you wanted to create! I highly recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting the Bay Area! Even if it is just for a drink at the bar!


July 24, 2014

Fashion Fridays: Finding Your Style

Happy Friday!! Kira is enjoying some time in San Diego this weekend and Ashley is super excited about her cousin's bridal shower on Saturday that she's been planning!

This Fashion Fridays isn't about a particular style - it's about refining your own style. We have been talking a lot recently about how we want simplify our looks and dress a little more "grownup". Our styles have changed a lot over the years (we both went through a super preppy phase!) and I think we are both feeling like we have found our looks.

So it's super exciting when you have found the look and an idea of how you want to dress moving forward but how do you come to this conclusion? And how will you afford a whole new wardrobe? And how do you prioritize your purchases?

We have both found that we have been gaining a lot of inspiration from other bloggers, magazines, and especially Pinterest. We will look at our Pinterest fashion boards (Ashley's and Kira's) and take note of the trends throughout. We are both leaning more towards classics with a twist. Ashley is a little bit more feminine and romantic while Kira has more of a bold/geometric/pattern vibe. Looking at your Pinterest board as a whole will give you a really good idea of what you gravitate towards.

So once you have realized that you want a change and there are certain things that you want to purchase (or many things) how will you change up your look without going totally broke in the process? Shop the sales and shop the basics. Always start with basics, little black dress, new top, basic jacket. Once you have the basics down then it will be easier to add in your new fun elements. That fabulous printed jacket is to-die-for but will you wear it that often? And will you be able to wear it with everything? Mix and matching is key when shopping on a budget for a new wardrobe. Also, shop the sales for those fun unique items. The sales rack can be a great place to find those quirky items in your closet, and since they don't cost too much it won't be that bad if you only wear it a few times.

And lastly, make a list. Like really - sit down and write down all of the items of your dream closet. You can begin to form outfits in your mind and it will keep you focused on the items that you really want vs. the things that are on trend. Ashley did this and it really helped her when out shopping, she could look at a list as a reminder of things that she knew would make an impact on her wardrobe. She kept it on her phone and crossed things off as she purchased them.

What are some of your tips when trying out a new style or shopping?


July 23, 2014

Interweb Goodies

Hump day treats for all!

Check out The Capital's latest fashion trends here! #OnePanem #UNITY

Get great drinks and take a trip back in time with these amazing Speakeasy's across the US!

Ashley loves the Olsen's and weddings, so it is safe to say that she is in love with this wedding dress the two designed.

Nature vs Concrete: check out these beautiful photos of trees fighting back.

When photos of fashion aren't cutting it, look to these amazing fashion quotes for inspiration.


July 21, 2014

Make A WISH!

A night out on the town with AKA Blog

On Friday night we went out to celebrate our friend Amy's birthday! We were really excited to try out a new place, WISH, in SOMA (South of Market) in San Francisco.

While parking wasn't easy the night was a lot of fun! WISH is a great place to go for a few specialty cocktails. Everything was perfectly made, nothing too strong - but you knew that you were getting you money's worth. They had a fun DJ playing some more 'clubby' dance songs that were fun to jam to.

Our favorite drinks of the night - Little Italy and Ginger Mojito. They were both delish!!

Another great thing about the location is that there are a lot of other bars in the area so things stay open late. We ended up grabbing some late night snacks before heading back to Amy's place to watch some Ja'mie before falling asleep!

We both loved our outfits that night, but sadly didn't get any good quality pics of them - so look for some fun outfit posts soon!

If you live in the Bay Area - what are some of your favorite places to go out?


Amazing Apps: Lumosity

There are a zillion apps out there and more come out everyday, there are some however that are more amazing than others. 

Lumosity is one of these amazing apps.

If your not familiar with Lumosity it is a great brain training app. Brain training you say, how could that be!? Well I'm not actually sure how it works but I can tell you that it is fun and easy to use. The app gives you a few games to play each day and keeps track of your progress. Some of the games involve math while others involve memory and spatial reasoning.

The app is free to download and gives you a variety of games to play and tracks your progress in each game, as well as tracks a few overall stats. If you want to take full advantage of Lumosity then you will have to purchase a subscription. This can be for a few months or an entire year. I didn't feel like a subscription was necessary so I stuck with the freebie version.

I try to play everyday but that does not always happen. I do however see improvement in my sharpness and ability with the games. Little by little you get better, it is a nice break in the day or a great way to get yourself going in the morning.

All Images via Lumosity
Is there any learning apps you use?


July 18, 2014

Fashion Fridays: Foreign Exchange Show!

Happy Friday! This weekend I am going to see one of my fave groups, Foreign Exchange! I am so excited to get to see them again and to spend some quality time with my brother (he's moving to NYC soon)!

 For concerts I good for a cool and comfy vibe. I wanna look put together but feel like I can stand and dance for hours if need be, here's what I put together to wear to the show.

The best part of this outfit is easily the pants. They are amazing. Love the color, love the zebras, another great Buffalo Exchange find!

The Shirt is long and has pockets! It can really go with anything and be easily dressed up or down. I originally bought it to wear to Kanye's show last year but ended up wearing something else. It's a great basic and was a great price at Marshall's

The shoes were another steal at Payless. My other black flats died on my trip to NOLA earlier this year and I was able to quickly replace them with this pair. Not quite as great as the last pair but they will do for now.

And my jacket is from Old Navy

Me pretending to be a model, I'm actually incredibly awkward in front of the camera but Ash and I are working on it! Fake it til you make it right!

Have an amazing Friday and a great weekend!


July 17, 2014

Ciao Bella


I have been feeling rather nostalgic recently, three summers ago I was enjoying my time in beautiful Italy while I was studying abroad.
Strolling the streets

My study abroad adventure was short and sweet, but still made a huge impact on me. During July of 2011 I lived in Rome, studied Renaissance Art and Food & Wine of Italy. Yes, those were my classes.

My beautiful Rome-mates; Amy, Tricia, Katie, Veronika, and Alicia

I lived with 5 other fabulous ladies, including my college bestie Amy, in a great apartment in North-East Rome close to Piazza Bologna. When we weren't in classes we were going to the beach, exploring ruins, eating gelato, shopping in local shops, and enjoying time together. We had a balcony that looked over the street, a washer that flooded our kitchen at least 10 times, and neighbors who always laughed at our crazy antics.
Exploring Pompeii

Capri is a dream

I was lucky enough to travel though out the country with my program. A day trip to Florence was complete with a train ride through Tuscany, shopping for leather goods in boutiques, a long extended lunch, and a trip to Galleria dell'Accademia to see Michaelangelo's The David. I also spent a weekend in Pompeii, Sorrento, and Capri. Pompeii is a true wonder that everyone must see and Capri is my favorite place in Earth. Our whole program decided to rent a boat and sail around the island -  swimming through the grottos is something I will never forget.

Colazione Italiano

In my classes I spent my days in a dream-like state. In my art class we took field trips to the Vatican and Villa Borghese. We explored old churches, walked the streets to see all the spectacular architecture, all while still being marveled that this was a class! I took a food and wine class where our field trips were not quite as glamorous, however we did have an unforgettable class. Each session I would learn about a different region of Italy and the different foods and wines that come from that area. My professor, Greg, was incredibly knowledgable and made the class super entertaining. Each session we had two dishes from the region cooked by Claudia, an ex-ballerina chef extrodinaire who has blue hair and wore Gucci! In addition to our classes, I became very close with two of the people who worked at my program, Andrea and Michela, they are both so full of life and I miss them dearly!

ti amo!!

My study abroad life was a dream, not only for the reasons already stated, but for the lightness that was felt in the romantic laid-back city. Every day was a fantasy, strolling the piazzas at night, consuming a fresh made cappuccino, or conversing with someone on the metro; every day way spent with much ease.

Ashley's Italy Tips

Rome will forever have my heart

- Converse with everyone, Italian is such a beautiful language
- Go to the Trevi Fountain at night
- Check out the price on a monthly bus/train pass - it will probably end up saving you a ton of $$
- Stroll throughout Capri with friends and wander into hotel gardens
- Purchase a floppy hat in Pompeii
- Eat arancini from Mizzica in Piazza Bologna
- Have a photoshoot with at The Colosseum at night
- Divulge in da domani a dieta gelato from Gelarte (translation: I will diet tomorrow)
- Pack many maxi dresses, midi skirts, and scarves as you need to have your knees and shoulders covered to enter many churches
- Go to the top of St. Peter's Basilica
- Plan a day to do nothing other than eat a long lunch and walk around!