Friday, November 17, 2017

Christmas Photo Inspiration

{This is probably one of my absolute favorite photos of us. Shane has it framed on his bedside table}

Happy Friday!

Today I am sharing our Christmas photos from two years ago. Some of these photos are my favorite that Shane and I have ever taken together. I love this location and the light was just perfect that evening. Unfortunately, they cut all the tall grass down in this empty lot so we haven't been able to take photos there again. 

Last Sunday we took our Christmas photos for this year. I haven't got any sneak peaks yet, but I am dying to see them. We took them in downtown Naples, on 5th Avenue. All the Christmas lights and decoration are up so I am excited to see how they turn out. 

The nursery furniture is being delivered today and I am dying. I cannot wait to get the room set up and ready to go. We only have about 8 weeks left until little man arrives. SO much left to do before that happens. 

Have an aweseome weekend and as always thanks for reading!

xo, Alina

Photos by Jillian Lee

Friday, November 10, 2017

Christmas Photos

Hello hello! 

I am sharing our Christmas photos from last year today. We are taking our photos for this years Christmas card this Sunday and I am so excited. This year will definitely be a bit different because I'm almost 32 weeks pregnant at this point. I am looking forward to having those photos to look back on and to show Baby Smith one day. 

Jillian does pretty much all our photos and I love working with her so much. She knows how to direct us perfectly to get the right shot. I will definitely share the newest Christmas photos here when she gets them back to me. 

Most of the items I am wearing are old/out of stock unfortunately, but you can still get some inspiration from our outfits. Shane's outfit is pretty much all from Nordstrom and Vineyard Vines and they usually these types of basics in stock. 

Picking the perfect location for your photos is crucial. I usually spend a lot of time thinking about the location we are going to shoot at and if it will go with the vibes I am aiming for. These were taken at Koreshan Park here in Naples. If you live in our area I highly recommend it for any photo shoot. It has a rustic vibe that can't be really hard to find anywhere else around here. 

I hope you guys enjoy the photos and can draw some inspiration from them for your own Christmas photos this year. 

Thanks for reading!

xo, Alina

Friday, October 20, 2017

Our Couples Shower

The Neapolitan baby shower

The Neapolitan baby shower

The Neapolitan baby shower

How cute are these blocks that Michelle made?!?! They were the perfect shower decor! I believe she found the DIY instructions on Pinterest. 

{Above and Below}
The absolute BEST girlfriends a girl could ever ask for. I love these ladies SOOO much! Some of them flew in from Chicago and Philadelphia just to be there and I couldn't be more grateful. 

Last Sunday two of my amazing friends Michelle and Shea threw us a couples shower and I wanted to share some photos from the party. My MIL had asked me a few months ago what my ideal shower would be and I said a "Non-traditional couples shower" and I feel so lucky that we were able to be surrounded by our closest friends and Shane's siblings to shower Baby Smith. It was SO much fun and turned out exactly how I had envisioned.  

Baby Smith got so many incredible gifts and books. He has a whole sports collection going already with gear for the Gator's, Fighting Illini, and the Cubs. 

I finally ordered his nursery furniture and we are nailing down paint colors this week. I decided to go with Pottery Barn furniture because the set I loved had many matching pieces. I have ordered so far this crib, dresser, and nightstand. I will definitely do a nursery reveal post when everything is complete. I can't believe I am already in the third trimester and little smith will be here before we know it! Time is flying by. 

Thanks so much for reading!

xo, Alina 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Everyday Makeup Routine

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13 // 14 // 15 // 16 // 17 // 18

Today I am going to share with y'all my "Everyday Makeup Routine". I get tons of questions about the products I use so I thought I would share an updated routine. This routine is what I do everyday for work, but I usually don't do bronzer, blush, and highlighter unless I am going out after work. It just takes more time to get those products on and blended.  In the morning I want to be quick, which means more sleep for me :). I had the collage made with the products in the order I use them so hopefully this is easy to follow!

1. After I moisturize my face and let it set for a minute or two I put on Benefit's Porefessional Primer.  It makes my pores look SO much smaller and makes all the proceeding makeup products go on smoothly. 

2. I found these CoverGirl Trublend concealers a few months ago and fell in love! I was using a different product and I thought it was clogging my pores so I went on the hunt for a concealer that would work for my skin. I like the consistency of these concealers a lot. They aren't too thick or too oily. A lot of the concealers I have bought when I try to cover a a pimple and blend it in, it just wipes away. That drives me nuts! I also hate when they are SO thick it doesn't blend at all and you can tell it is there after you apply foundation. I love that they come in such a variety of colors. I have 3-4 different shades depending on how pale or tan I am. 

3. This foundation is life! I searched and searched for a foundation for months before I came across this one. I wanted a foundation with no SPF in it. When I go out at night I hate having the white flashback in my photos. It is so hard to find a good foundation that does not have SPF. {My moisturizer has SPF in it already so during the day time I have that on, but if I am applying makeup to go out, I use a different moisturizer without SPF.}  A friend of my mine suggested I tried Estee Lauder Double Wear, which I did. It was WAYYYY to thick and very full coverage. I went back to Nordstrom to get some help and the lady who helped me suggested Estee Lauder Double Wear Light. As the name suggests, you get all the amazing qualities of Double Wear without the full coverage and thick formula. It is build-able too, so if you want it to be lighter coverage or very full coverage you can add less or more depending on what you want.  I have this foundation in 4 different shades and I just love it! I am currently using shade 2.0. 

4. I use my Beauty Blender to apply my foundation, blend in my under eye corrector, and to bake my under eyes with powder. 

5. I have used this Maybelline Dream Lumi corrector in the shade "Radiant" for years! I found it when I was in graduate school in 2013 and I have been using it ever since. I did stop using it for awhile when I found the YSL Touche Eclat. I went back to Maybelline eventually, because it is more than half the price and is honestly very, very close in quality to the YSL. For me it wasn't THAT much better to justify the cost difference. I apply this is a triangle underneath my eyes and blend it in with my beauty blender.

6, 7 , 8 & 9. Next, I set my under eye. I mix the Rimmel Stay Matte and the RCMA powder together and set my under eye with my beauty blender. I brush off the excess with the Elf Stippling brush (#9). Then I set my foundation on the rest of my face. I use the Sigma F30 (#6) powder brush and Rimmel's Stay Matte powder to do this. I love Sigma brushes and have been using them for years. They are a great price, awesome quality, and don't shed. I have tried so many different powders throughout the years and recently went back to the Rimmel powder.

10 & 11. When I am planning to go out after work, or going out in general, I always use bronzer, blush, and a highlighting powder. I am currently using Mac's Mineralized Skinfinish in color "Give Me Sun". I switch back and forth between a few bronzers depending on my skin tone at the time. I do love Bobbi Brown's bronzer as well. I loveeeee this Sigma F50 Duo Fibre Brush. It puts the product exactly where I want it and blends like a dream.

12 & 13. I have always loved Mac Blushes. They are really the only blushes I use except for one Milania Baked Blush I love. I rotate between a few different shades in Mac Blushes my two favorites are "Warm Soul" and "Love Cloud". I use the Sigma F40 Brush to apply to blush. The goat hair that this brush is made out of allows you to pick up the blush and distribute it evenly without a ton of blending.

14 & 15. Adding highlighter to the tops of my cheeks is the last step for my face makeup. This Becca highlighter in Opal is the ONLY highlighter I use. It has lasted me 2 years and I use it frequently. I have used Mac's "Soft and Gentle" before and still own it, but I never reach for it anymore. I use this Sigma F86 Precision Tapered Brush to apply the highlighter. I then go in with Sigma's F25 Tapered Brush to diffuse it and blend it in {I forgot to add that to this collage}. The F86 allows me to place the highlighter exactly where I want it and the F25 blends in into my cheek bones seamlessly.

16, 17, & 18. This next step is something I do every single time I put makeup on. If I don't do it, I look tired and my eyes just kind of disappear into my face. I need definition on my lower lash line to make everything look the way I like. I RARELY use eyeliner and I NEVER use it on my lower lash line. Instead, I use eye shadow. I mix two colors from the Naked Palette "Buck" and "Darkhorse" together with the Sigma E65 and use it along my lower lash line. I then blend it out with the Sigma E30. Once I have blended that out the way I want I am pretty much done with my makeup. I will go over my whole face with a powder brush to make sure everything is blended perfectly. 

Whoaaaa that was a long post. I hope if you read it you found some helpful tips, and products to incorporate into your own routine. I have very oily skin and live in a very humid, coastal climate. If you have very dry skin some of these products may not be ideal for you. However, you can't go wrong with a lot of the makeup brushes I have mentioned. They are all available at a great price point and mine have lasted years.

Thanks for reading



Monday, August 7, 2017

Gender Reveal.. Touchdown or Tutu!?!?

The Neapolitan gender reveal

The Neapolitan gender reveal

The Neapolitan gender reveal

We are SO excited to announce that Baby Smith is going to be a BOY

We found out yesterday with some of our closest friends and family at a beautiful brunch that my sister in law Danielle and great friend Brooke threw for us. It was so amazing to celebrate with everyone and finally find out the gender of Baby Smith. 

Shane and I were both hoping for a boy. We took a genetic test to find out the gender and to rule several genetic diseases. I didn't want to do any extra ultrasounds {I am only doing two, hopefully} and we didn't want to wait a few more weeks for the anatomy scan. 

I am so exciting to start planning the nursery. As of now, the colors I really want to go with are light blue, navy, and white. I don't want it to be a traditional themed nursery. I want it to be really upscale, unique, and special. I will definitely share the design process as we figure out what we really want. 

Thanks so much reading!