Monday, August 26, 2013

Guest Post // Back to School Fashion by Hannah Graff

Guest Post by Hannah Shop/Blog/Art

Hello all!

My name is Hannah, some of you may know me from my tumblr and blog MoonandTrees. I am here to talk about fall and the autumnal fashions that come with it. I was so excited when Cristina asked me to do a guest post on her lovely blog especially since I am obsessed with fall and the wonderful fashion trends that start to appear when the leaves fall. I have created an array of some cooler weather looks to get you in the mood for that crisp air and the return of school time. I am also a fan of vintage clothing. I think autumn goes hand in hand with that sort of nostalgic dreamy feeling that a vintage piece has. I found some great looks for decent prices as well as some nice fall accessories to help add to the fun of going back to school. All of these items were found on Etsy. You can check out my entire fall wish list and favorite items on etsy here! And I am obsessed with these fall/ halloween photos from Foxtail and Fern blog

Lace Top- I chose this top for its darker fantasy quality. I think it would be a fun piece to pair with a thick sweater and scarf. The black will also match with anything of course.
Brown Suede Shoes- I love these cute little booties. I have not seen this style before and thought they had a nice woodsy feeling to them. I pictured them being surrounded by the fall colored leaves and fell in love!

Wool Felt Hat- I used to not wear hats but recently I just realized what a fun and edgy accessory they can be. I thought this wool hat was very simple and would bring a nice touch to a fall outfit, and keep your ears warm!

Aztec Sweater- This sweater looks so comfortable and fun. I am huge fan of these neat patterns that appear on many things lately.

Scalloped Skirt - I love this skirt. I have always had a fondness for a simple skirt but this one has the scalloped edges that I think bring some fun to it. Pair this skirt with some jewel toned tights and Bask in the fall air!

Inkit Pencils- These pencils are so pretty. I love how they have the bark still on them and remind me of birch trees. A fun alternative to the normal yellow pencil!

Bella Donna Solid Perfume- Cristina told me about this magical shop on etsy that sells products based off the film, Practical Magic. If you are as big of a Practical Magic fan as myself and Cristina, then you will love these products.

Taper Pendant Earnings- I thought these were so pretty and simple. I think you could wear them in any season really. I thought the Bronze colors were very appropriate for the fall season though.

Day Book- I am so in love with this planner. I can't get over the design of it. I love the longer format and the green color. This will be a super unique thing to add to your back to school things.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Bath Ritual // Rejuvenating

Whether you abide by one in the daylight or nighttime, bath rituals are very beneficial for physical and mental well being. Everyone should take the time to discover something that will heal/nurture them. Even if you can only treat yourself once a month or on a daily basis I wanted to a share a few recent & tried & true products that made their way into my own bath rituals. Unlike a shower, bath rituals are not limited for cleansing & detoxifying: bring a book, play a tape of calming music or even a glass of wine if you have the chance.

Whatever you desire as long as it n o u r i s h e s you.

bath ritual

This bath ritual is center around uplifting, movement & stimulating. By all means build your own tools for any mood you wish to channel. All of the products I featured are either organic and/or nontoxic. Enjoy & indulge.

bath ritual

Body Brush: The art of dry skin brushing has been around for a long time in Ayurvedic culture. Prior to your bath, use a bristle body brush in circulate motion to stimulate the lymph glands (part of our immune system) and is made of white blood cells called lymphocytes and the interstitial fluid that bathe our cells, bringing them nutrients and removing their waste. All detoxification occurs first and foremost through the lymph - (via) Its recommended you start from the ankles working your way up, especially the neck & collar bone region. This act also helps exfoliate dead skin cells and boost circulation.

Little Flower Soap Co. Handmade Soap in 'Woodsman': Cedar, camphor, and spruce make up this soap's body. Regardless of the title, I wanted to bring in the scent of the forest in my bath. The added bonus of clays in this soap helps remove impurities.

Elysium Apothecary Candle in “Petite Fleurs*”:  I normally lean toward vanilla & decadent scents but this scent is made with honeysuckle, strong black tea, lemon, blood orange & white sugar so I was completely sold, and did not regret it at all. Its citrus but in a way I have never encountered. Candles are relaxing form of aromatherapy, this shop uses botanical and primarily essential oil based blends which is comforting to know. Light candles with your scent of choice to uplift or improve your mood. The tea lights are a lovely vanilla scent though.

Josie Maran Cleansing Oil: This oil has multi uses as a  cleansing oil, makeup remover and anti-aging treatment. Focusing on the bath ritual use a cleansing oil to clean your face of any impurities, soothe and moisturize. Relax and enjoy. Another notable option is Marble & Milkweed's Nourishing Body Oil

Aromalife Cinnamon Leaf Oil: My cinnamon leaf oil was kindly gifted to me by a friend but any organic cinnamon leaf oil will do. Cinnamon is a well known spice, stimulates circulation but be sure to dilute a few drops into a lotion, or use in a oil diffuser. Please avoid cinnamon if you a pregnant/lactating and do not consume internally. Another option is a fragrant beauty tea like R.L. Linden & Co. Ms. Tilly Rosalie's Beauty Tea for  facial steaming, an eye compress or aromatic plant bath.

One Willow Apothecaries 'Bright & Early' tea blend:  featuring tulsi, lemongrass and sage are a few of the herbs in this lovely blend. Sage is wonderful for reducing inflammation thanks to its rosmarinic acid, Tulsi is also known as holy basil and as an adaptogen it helps the body to resist stress. Lemongrass contains citral - an anti-microbial and anti-fungal agent. This tea is uplifting, rejuvenating.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

A Fine Frenzy's Pines

I've been listening to A Fine Frenzy's album Pines almost on repeat on Rdio. Although Pines came out several months ago I'm barely discovering this gem of an album. Incidentally perfect because it induces me into a state of Autumn (soon, soon...) this interview is equally inspiring. 

"The trees are so tall, its almost like being in a cathedral, you feel so small and connected at the same time with the planet the history." | The video below illustrate and document the making of the album, and the beauty and need to preserve nature

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Anthropologie Wish-list

 Since Summer is (somewhat) dwindling down, classes are just around the corner (next week) I figured I'd make a Autumn wishlist of a few (of many) coveted pieces from Anthropologie. Yes its almost time for the non-stop adoration of fall fashion (knitwear, layers, lace up boots, etc) Already I'm dreaming of how to spend my Autumn days: reading classic literature in coffee shops, bus trips to the science center,  the changing of seasonal produce at farmer's markets, picnics in favorable weather.

As for me, I'll be dreaming of knee-socks, falling leaves..and pinning pumpkin pie recipes.
click on the image to be directed or:

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Sixteen Small Steps to Happiness

I am completely unaware of the source but I found this here and agree so much.
Everyone should adapt these into their lifestyles and experience a refreshed lifestyle
*I know theres really only 15, I do not/could not find 13! Make 13 up for yourself :)

1. push yourself to get up before the rest of the world - start with 7am, then 6am, then 5:30am. go to the nearest hill with a big coat and a scarf and watch the sun rise.

2. push yourself to fall asleep earlier - start with 11pm, then 10pm, then 9pm. wake up in the morning feeling re-energized and comfortable.

3. erase processed food from your diet. start with no lollies, chips, biscuits, then erase pasta, rice, cereal, then bread. use the rule that if a child couldn’t identify what was in it, you don’t eat it.

4. get into the habit of cooking yourself a beautiful breakfast. fry tomatoes and mushrooms in real butter and garlic, fry an egg, slice up a fresh avocado and squirt way too much lemon on it. sit and eat it and do nothing else.

5. stretch. start by reaching for the sky as hard as you can, then trying to touch your toes. roll your head. stretch your fingers. stretch everything.

6. buy a 1L water bottle. start with pushing yourself to drink the whole thing in a day, then try drinking it twice.

7. buy a beautiful diary and a beautiful black pen. write down everything you do, including dinner dates, appointments, assignments, coffees, what you need to do that day. no detail is too small.

8. strip your bed of your sheets and empty your underwear draw into the washing machine. put a massive scoop of scented fabric softener in there and wash. make your bed in full.

9. organise your room. fold all your clothes (and bag what you don’t want), clean your mirror, your laptop, vacuum the floor. light a beautiful candle.

10. have a luxurious shower with your favourite music playing. wash your hair, scrub your body, brush your teeth. lather your whole body in moisturiser, get familiar with the part between your toes, your inner thighs, the back of your neck.

11. push yourself to go for a walk. take your headphones, go to the beach and walk. smile at strangers walking the other way and be surprised how many smile back. bring your dog and observe the dog’s behaviour. realise you can learn from your dog.

12. message old friends with personal jokes. reminisce. suggest a catch up soon, even if you don’t follow through. push yourself to follow through.

14. think long and hard about what interests you. crime? sex? boarding school? long-forgotten romance etiquette? find a book about it and read it. there is a book about literally everything.

15. become the person you would ideally fall in love with. let cars merge into your lane when driving. pay double for parking tickets and leave a second one in the machine. stick your tongue out at babies. compliment people on their cute clothes. challenge yourself to not ridicule anyone for a whole day. then two. then a week. walk with a straight posture. look people in the eye. ask people about their story. talk to acquaintances so they become friends.

16. lie in the sunshine. daydream about the life you would lead if failure wasn’t a thing. open your eyes. take small steps to make it happen for you.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Immunity & Health Boosters


Harney & Sons Coconut Vanilla Green Tea with Ginger  - One of my favorite teas, slightly steeped in below-boiling water. Green tea is good for boosting defenses against allergies by acting as an antihistamine.

Garden of Life RAW Meal in Vanilla Chai - This stuff is bliss. I have been searching for a vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free, delicious meal replacement/supplement and I tried this and fell in love. I love it with almond milk (or any milk) just as is. It is full of healthy vitamins, minerals, and probiotics. The best part for me is, I am not a fan of stevia - while this does have stevia I don't taste it at all. I am going to purchase the large container soon.

Tieman's Fusion Coffee - I am trying to switch to organic coffees but I saw this in health food store and I knew my mom really wanted to try it (matcha, and goji berry?) I saw it boasting it is a "low acid" coffee meaning it's supposed to help your body maintain a balanced ph (as long as you are additionally eating healthy) too much acidity in the body can cause acid-reflux, or other issues. not only does this coffee have matcha and pomegranate - it also contains roobois! I really loved this coffee I will probably get a medium roast next time

Eco Lips Ecotints in Plush Red - I love this lip tint so much, it smells like vanilla and offers a sweet color that is pleasing for summer or a quick moisturizer, only organic ingredients used in this sweet little balm

Wish Garden Kick Ass Heroes Pocket Remedies - These are the smaller versions of Wish Garden tinctures, the one I use most often is Biotic featuring Bee Propolis, Goldenseal root, Echinacea Purpurea root. My favorite thing about Wish Garden is that they use organic gluten-free alcohol, & Rocky Mountain spring water! I use Immune & Biotic together when I am feeling down or need to relax. I recently use Kick Ass Sinus (a double dose) to evade what would have been a horrid sinus infection, so this definitely made me very happy. I am also eyeing their Lymph Mover tincture as my next purchase!

Traditional Medicinals Nettle Tea - if you havent tried nettle tea, please do. Nettle is a wonderful herb that has a host of vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium. It is a great tea if you suffer from digestive issues, and it has a medicinal effect for sore throats. Nettle contains natural antihistamines and anti-inflammatories compounds (quercetin) that open up bronchial and nasal passages helping to relieve allergies. I like to make a large batch in a pitcher and then it and add lemon slices and sip it through out the day.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Interview / Francesca Lia Block

If somebody told me they didn't believe in magic, I would simply hand them one of Francesca Lia Block's books. Not magic like making your turn pink with the snap of your fingers or conjuring up a love potion but magic like transformation: unlocking the door and lifting the veil to your dreams, desires, and maybe even your fears. The power to change and manifest and even heal. This is what Block's books did for me and many (literally) voracious readers who fell in love with her magical realism works - most of which take place in L.A. and made me appreciate my city for what it was, and is. Beyond genies that grant three magic wishes (Weetzie Bat) and changelings (the Waters & the Wild) her books taught me that darkness is not a burden but your shadow: a part of you. Instead of alienating your shadows - transform it, channel it, but don't deny it. Some girls have real ocean pearls or glimmering diamonds that they treasure but for me, her books are a mermaid's treasure chest.

I got the chance to interview Francesca (check out her blog & twitter) and ask her about fashion, what heals her & her upcoming book Love in the Time of Global Warming which comes out August 27th and I am currently devouring The Elementals:

“In order to have bliss you have to be able to accept all the parts of the other, all the wildness and the darkness. You have to be able to hold on.”— The Elementals/Francesca Lia Block

Your book, Love in the Time of Global Warming will come out soon, featuring Pen(elope) Who would she be in reference to your Mythological Dating Guide archetype?
I'd guess Pen is an Urban Elf who becomes a Banshee

What can we look forward to in the future/current projects you are working on?
I am writing BEYOND THE PALE MOTEL, an adult novel that is very dark.
I am working on the sequel to LOVE IN THE TIME OF GLOBAL WARMING and my editor is interested in having me write a romance with an flb twist.

For those who do not know, you run various writing workshops, can you share bit with us how one can get involved as well as what they comprise of?
I teach at UCLA Extension, at Antioch, at Marilyn's Writing Pad and privately. My contact email is I work on plot, character, setting, style and theme, as well as helping each individual student find the deep story they feel compelled to tell. 

Will you be doing another 30 poems in 30 days on your blog? 
Yes! Good idea! soon!

What does happiness look like to you? 
Being with the ones I love. Creativity. Caring for others. Vegan food. Yoga. Books. Movies. Love.

Who/what inspires you {in this very moment}?
 The man I just spent the weekend with? 

Always infused with magical realism - your work covers Los Angeles throughout her various transformations and changes.Anyone can read your novels like Weetzie Bat or the Hanged Man and be transported back to one of Los Angeles's incarnations - or read Quakeland which is based in the now digital world. Beyond what readers could take from your recent works, how do you feel about Los Angeles today

In Love in the Time of Global Warming we see it (LA) destroyed. Someone asked me if I enjoyed writing that. I didn't. I love Los Angeles. But I was just trying to describe the sense of looming chaos I feel in the world now. But I am pretty peaceful with the life I've created in L.A.

Should light should be embraced along with the dark? If so, why and how do we embrace the dark/shadows when they can sometimes be what we fear most?
I think we need both and we can only grow stronger and find light if we face the darkness. That's a theme in many of my books.

Do you think you will write another novel that takes place in another city/travel although you have before (Ruby: Midwest/London, Dragons in Manhattan & Missing Angel Juan: New York) if so which might it be
I want to write about Italy so I need to take a little vacation!

What is the biggest misconception you think others have of you?
That I am a faerie.

What are 5 essential things that heal you:
 Love . Writing. Reading. Yoga. Therapy. 

Who would you like to share a fashion closet with?
Angelina Jolie if she was shorter. 

Surprise, you're granted the gift of one magical power, which would you choose, or would you say no? To heal cancer. 

Describe your dream dinner party:
My kids and my best friends, PJ Harvey, Patti Smith, Bjork, Guillermo del Toro, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Joseph Gordon Levitt, my agent and editor and their friends and family. 

I'd wear a blush Leger bandage dress and black Paul Green boots. It would be in my backyard with a band, dancing, lanterns, twinkle lights and vegan food

Dream vision board: what would an ideal day be like for you
Today. Love. Yoga. Breakfast. Love. Movie. Dinner. Love.

One piece of advice? 
Be really, really kind to each other.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Summer Dreams

summer is the flowers wilting from the heat
collecting pieces of fruit, flower and mint to infuse cool water
summer is sleeping by the ocean wishing you could trade your limbs
for a mermaids tail
to escape underwater if only for a day
dance merrily with the undulating waves
summer I want to spend you
swinging beneath the tall trees
surrounded by an August breeze
running swiftly through the earth's labyrinth
falling into a summer's night dream

babycakes la

i. Bird-books and fresh breakfast
ii. recent drawing and new workspace and desk
iii. mesa sunrise and reading on deer
iv. I miss the mountains
v. Babycakes goodies! I can never finish it all
vi. earlier in July