Monday MMMix-up

09/22/2014

Welcome to the Monday MMMix-up, a weekly installation of some of my favorite things. I want to share what motivates me with you, other bloggers that inspire me, the things that get my blood flowing.

This week, the weather has cooled down (from 106 to like 85), so I’m feeling the autumn love right now. Darker colors, leggings and boots and scarves, pumpkin, soup, WEATHER. Here are my autumn inspired favorites for this week…

|MUSIC|

Lately, I’ve been pretty obsessed with Far From Any Road by The Handsome family. It’s the opening song for True Detective, a show on HBO, which you should totally watch, if you haven’t. The Handsome Family is made up of a husband and wife, Brett and Rennie, who make these hauntingly beautiful, deep dark songs. I recently read an interview with them here and I loved what they said about the song. When asked what was going through their minds when writing Far From Any Road, Rennie said, “I saw some Jimson weed and it’s a plant that only blooms at night and you can see these huge white flowers and there are these moths that feed on them just at night so it’s like a secret night time blooming and romance. Jimson weed actually goes back to Jamestown and there’s a story of it driving people insane because it’s psychedelic and because it gets into people’s water all the time. So it’s about these moths and this sexy, forbidden ritual they have in the darkness..

|MAKEUP|

I’m really into the soft matte, almost nude lip as of late. It doesn’t help that I’m totally obsessed with Kylie Jenner (please don’t tell anyone that I obsessed over a teenager.) and that she wears this color on her lips all the time. Keiko really nails the soft, matte, muted color. Get the look here.

|MOTIVATION|

Find more fall inspired downloads here via Cocorrina.

|MOOD|

Brown, natural, cozy, nuetrals. I found this beautiful moodboard and several more over at Stil Inspiration. Pella has a beautiful blog where she shares interior design, decoration, architecture, photography, gardening and other fine things. It’s really lovely.

|MANICURE|

I’ve always had a thing for half-moon nails, but this is a really cool spin on in. And done in a deep red? This is perf. Get the full tutorial on the Lulus blog over here.

Do you have any suggestions for the Monday Mixx-up? Music, manicures, moodboards, makeup, meals, man crushes? You name it, I want to hear it. Share with me what you’re feeling lately in the comments below.

Header image found here.



Mr. & Mrs. Lamb | A Santa Paula Wedding

09/20/2014

Ah, #jsquared. Jen and Jeff tied the knot on 8/16/14 and asked me to help with their special day. Jen wanted candid, stolen moment type photos, which really I think I’m pretty good at doing. And truthfully, I love doing them. I mean, if you want a bunch of posed photos, why not just have a family member take them? Am I crazy? Well, duh, but that’s besides the point.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I love offbeat weddings. Weddings where the personalities of the bride and groom show through and not just tradition. Jen had blue hair and Jeff had Game of Thrones pins for him and his groomsmen. They decorated with little toy dinosaurs and they made all the pompom decorations themselves. Oh yeah! AND THEY MADE THEIR OWN FREAKING WEDDING RINGS!

Jen and Jeff brewed their own beer, which I love (because who doesn’t love beer?!), but unfortunately, it was such a hit that it ran out fast. There were so many personal touches in this wedding; it was really very sweet and true to them.

The officiant friggin’ nailed it. Definitely one of the best ceremonies I’ve ever witnessed. And the speeches were so touching and hilarious. I find myself getting more and more sappy at weddings as the years go on.

And of course, one of the best parts of my job, being a hairstylist and a photographer, is that I generally get to work these awesome events with my best friends. That’s my best friend, who did the makeup, and roommate, who did the hair, below. I can’t wait for the next wedding.

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#FBF Retro Hattie Watson

09/19/2014

FlashBackFriday to 2011, when I shot with Hattie Watson in the Simi Valley hills. Though she’s a natural redhead, I think she rocked the black hair, don’t you?

Model | Hattie Watson
Hair & Makeup | Serena Sudol
Location | Simi Valley, CA



Vacations and why they’re important

09/09/2014

vacations

Are you that person? I need a freaking vacation. Many of us need the time to ourselves, are overwhelmed at work, just plain stressed out, but the reality is, a lot of us just can’t get away. Maybe we feel uncomfortable leaving family and friends behind. Or maybe we have too many responsibilities at home or a career we can’t take time away from. And maybe, we are just plain broke. In the long run, fatigue and stress can affect our performance, mentally and physically. It can impact our relationships, our friendships. It can take a huge toll on every aspect of life.

I was 18 when I first moved out with my boyfriend. I was a manager at a Starbucks in a grocery store and I was broke. My dad didn’t give me much advice when I moved out, but one thing he pushed for was that Travis and I made sure to set time and money aside to give ourselves a break. Go to the movies. Go bowling. Anything, but you can’t go on forever if you never take a break. That always stuck with me and my dad was so right. I worked myself to the bone and I never left my apartment. I was burnt out in the worst kind of way and ultimately ended up quitting my job because I just couldn’t do it anymore. (Which was really dumb, btw.)

Now that I’m older, I really make sure to take breaks from life. Sometimes, it’s not work that’s too much. Sometimes, it’s friends. Sometimes, it’s just general stress. But, I make sure to take some time at least a couple times a year and you should too.

REASONS TO VACATION.

Boost your heart health. The Framingham Heart Study showed that women who take at least two vacations a year are eight times less likely to have coronary heart disease. A study done with men who had an elevated risk for coronary disease, showed that those who didn’t take an annual vacation were 32% more likely to die from a heart attack than the vacationers.

Stress less. Stress causes wrinkles, more colds, and weight gain. A weekend getaway or switching your day up can reduce stress hormones and even lower your blood pressure.

Increase your performance and boost your focus at work. Stress can affect our decision making and focus at work causing performance problems.

Increase your well-being. Women who take vacations more frequently experienced lower levels of tension and depression versus women who vacationed less often. Apparently, even just anticipating a vacation is a mood booster.

GET CREATIVE.

A vacation doesn’t necessarily mean flying somewhere or a lengthy getaway. To me, a vacation is just a change of surroundings. Maybe take a trip to park, read under a tree. Go hiking in a local state park. Visit a library or a museum. Take a Sunday drive or a short trip. There’s no reason, money or otherwise, that you can’t find a way to get away.

DO IT ON THE CHEAP.

I can’t say that I travel often, but I’ve definitely done my fair share of vacationing and I can tell you, I am the deal queen. I like getting away so I find ways to make it affordable for myself. I’ve used Groupon and LivingSocial time and time again. I’ve seen so many great deals on there for hotels and activities like wine tasting, hot air balloon rides, laser tag, and even yoga retreats. Do you have a destination in mind and want to save money on your stay? Hit up Priceline. That site is my jam! Type in the city you want then click on express deals. Choose how many stars you want and the area and BAM! You’re in deal city. I’ve traveled to Las Vegas and San Diego for very cheap thanks to these sites. Definitely take advantage of them.

Where will you go on your next vacation?



Mr. & Mrs. Butler | A San Diego Wedding

09/09/2014

I met Monica ages ago when we both canvassed for Kirby. It was fun, but neither of us stuck around and ultimately parted ways. Years later, we reconnected on Facebook (because who doesn’t, right?) and she asked me to shoot her wedding. Of course, I accepted. She told me she was getting married in San Diego and it was at this super cute venue right on the coast. I got to her hotel room and all her bridesmaids were sipping their starbucks and giggling away. Ok, love these girls.

Checked on her fiance in the other room and the dudes were cracking me up. They each were wearing little yellow socks with roosters on them …cock socks, if you will. Monica and Steve’s wedding with riddled with so many cute and tiny details, it was hard to not obsess over them. Beer coozies that read, “To have and to hold and to keep your beer cold.” Beer coozies that were made specifically to hold the beer that they had brewed themselves. Hello?! That’s so cool!

They had tiny desserts and treats; all the decorations, the accessories, the sweets, even the lemonade, were all so cohesive. One of my biggest pet peeves is when a wedding doesn’t look like it was thought out as a whole, but instead, it’s just a mish-mash of whatever they liked. So really, I could go on and on about how much I loved Monica and Steve’s wedding.

Of course, every wedding has something go wrong and this one was no exception. Monica and Steve handled everything with such grace, it was great to spend the day with them. I mean, someone cut they’re wedding cake before they did. Who does that? And wouldn’t every bride have a meltdown over that? I’ve seen this stuff time and time again. keep calm. keep calm. keep calm. EXPLOSION. But nope, not Monica and Steve. They laughed, smoothed over some frosting, and went back to enjoying their wedding.

This is how weddings are supposed to be. They should just happen. At the end of the day, it’s just a giant party for two people celebrating their love. Not much can be done about things that go wrong the day of, so just go with flow and enjoy. At least it’ll make a great story for your the someday.



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Wedding, glamour, and lifestyle photographer. Hairstylist specializing in unique and fun trends. Passionate about healthy, vegetarian eating and living a natural lifestyle. Meow.

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