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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

DIY Restyle: Jump Suit into Romper for Spring

P.S. This is the only "Before" picture I managed to take! 

Hey Beachonista!  I bought a cute jump suit from Heavenly Couture a few weeks ago.  I was drawn to it's tropical appeal, the softness of the fabric, oh ,and how it looked when I tried it on!  But the one most important thing I forgot to take into consideration was shrinkage.  Sure enough, when I threw it in the wash and dryer the pant legs shrunk.  I couldn't part ways with it, so the next best thing? Cutting them!  I decided to cut the pant legs off with scissors and turn it into a romper! Check out my last post on how to cut your pants into shorts for a detailed tutorial.  In my opinion, it looks a lot better. Now, it feels cooler in this heatwave we're having by the beach.   

Tucker insisted on saying "hello" during picture time. ;)
Heels : Payless $20 | Jumpsuit/Romper: Heavenly Couture: $17 | Necklace: Harper and Harlow: $20 | Earrings: Simply Audrey: $14 | Bracelet: Heavenly Couture: $14

What was even better is that the extra fabric worked perfectly to cover the throw pillows I've been wanting to cover for, like....ever.  Not only was it enough fabric, the print went well with the overall beach-y theme my roommates and I have going on in our house.  I was even more excited about the fact that the fabric was already sewn on two sides.  All that was left was to stitch up the two sides.  

Voila! Now, I have pretty pillows too. :) #bonus  

Next time you run into a shrunken jump suit, don't throw them away -- cut the legs off and turn it into a romper.  I hope you enjoyed today's DIY Restyle: Jump Suit into Romper for Spring!  

Until next

Love + Sun,

Amanda :)

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Oh, Hey!! I'm Officially a WPA Certified SUP Instructor!

oh hey!! good news, beachonista: I'm officially a World Paddle Association Certified Stand Up Paddle Board Instructor!  

I received this exquisite certificate through Paddle Into Fitness, which was instructed by the brilliant Gillian Gibree, a Roxy athlete who is a professional Stand Up Paddle Boarder and Yoga Instructor with a multitude of degrees and worldwide water sport achievements.  

I can't believe I am celebrating the success of completing this certification program!!  On the outside looking in, this achievement seems manageable and easy to attain.  But for me, it's been a process of evolution.  Purifying my old ideas and ways of earning a living, in addition to moving outside of my comfort zone has required me to update my perspective and fire up my drive in order to move forward.  

My mom always taught me to follow my heart and to be faithful to my dreams (as she made her life an example of those principles).  While I knew that to be true, I've also felt the pressures of securing a "good" job to make sure I could pay my bills and put food on the table.  

An inner battle occurs when you're comfortably, comfortable in the "known" BUT your heart is roaring beneath the chambers, yearning to create something meaningful in the world.  

I suspect most everyone who has courageously stepped forward with a dream has experienced this inner tug-o-war and tangoed with resistance, self-doubt, fear, stepping outside of their comfort zone and taking a leap of faith into the "unknown." 

Meet My Fear. Can't say I've ever completed any kind of ocean training before. Not because the programs lacked in my area. There were plenty! I just wasn't inspired to engage in something physically demanding. I'm the kind of girl that enjoys effortlessly gliding through life and waves, alike. ;) In fact, the only time I came close to doing something remotely taxing was "Junior Lifeguards" when I was 12 years old. But, somehow I ducked out of that and now the mere thought of water training makes me sweat....profusely.  

Awful images of being unsuccessful came to mind accompanied by some serious self-doubt: "What if I can't do it? What if I suck? What if I embarrass myself??! What if I don't get my certificate? My business will be over." (insert monkey-covering-his-eyes emoji here) 

"It's okay to be scared.  Being scared means you're about to do something really, really brave." 

Lo and behold, the meat of this course involved water safety training.  One drill in particular was water rescues.  Part of the drill is to save an unconscious victim from the ocean using your SUP.  Did I mention both days rained hard with blustering winds?? That's not ideal SUP conditions. 

[[Insert more sweat here.]] 

All I could do was grab a handful of courage from the non-existent pocket of my spring suit. (Yeah, spring suit! Where was my fullsuit?? Forgot to pack it. I froze.) I paddled out to my partner (who was playing the unconscious victim), dove into the water, flipped my paddle board upside down, grabbed the victim, drapped her across my board, to then climb back on my board. I strategically secured her arms on my board while I leaned back to fall into the water so my board could flip right-side up with victim securely transitioning to the top as well. My next move? Swing the victim's legs fully on board, to then lay on top of her and paddle back to safety. 

Did you catch all that?? LOL

"Everything you ever wanted is on the other side of fear." 

At first this was way outside of my comfort zone. There is nothing comforting about flipping around the ocean in a highly-charged situation.  My reluctance made it difficult for me and my partner to trust that we were really going to land on the top of the board while the board turned from the bottom side back to the top.  At least that's how I felt! But after 50,000 tries, we got it down! Hooray! You would think other things like learning how to teach a lesson or the WPA final exam would've scared me more. But, nope. Just water rescues. Okay, I'm lying. Those things worried me too.  But not as much. 

As a result of my nerve-wracking experience, it dawned on me that I'm growing. evolving. And becoming the person I need to facilitate this dream of mine. Of course I'm going to feel awkward and out of my element- I'm doing something BIG! Now as a World Paddle Association Certified Stand Up Paddle Board Instructor, I'm thrilled to have grown through this to provide you with a pleasurable and safe Stand Up Paddleboarding  experience with my newly equipped knowledge to provide lessons!  If you are interested in booking lessons with me, please email me at!  In the meantime....if you find yourself teetering with the idea of following your dream, GO FOR IT.  Have you stopped due to resistance? Start. Again. And again. And again. Continue on despite the fear -- because... the world NEEDS what you've got.  Ok? Ok. :)

Much love to you. Until next time.... xxx

Hugs + Hearts,


Monday, April 4, 2016

Beach Space: Twinkle Lights & Balloons

Hey Beachonista! If there was a part of my life that I ALWAYS wanted to blog about but have held back it would be: interior design & interior decorating. This passion has been engrained in my being to the point where the sheer act of transforming leftover party favors into decor thrills me to no end. :)  

It's the kind of love that makes me forget to check my phone for hours because I'm tip-toeing atop the ladder, hanging curtains at the perfect height with just enough distance to make my window appear larger. (More about this design trick in another post!) 

Or the kind of excitement that happily brings me nose-deep in multiple fabrics, comparing and contrasting an array of blues to find the right one for my new chair. 

Furthermore, I've spent several years studying Interior Design at The Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising, which fuels my desire to share design-inspired posts here as well! 

All in all, I'm just passionate about beautiful spaces.  

With that said. Welcome to MY FIRST interior decor post  - "Beach Space: Twinkle Lights & Balloons!"        

It may sound strange but spaces kinda speak to me. I take in the landscape, then, suddenly, it'll lead me to a design idea. Literally, I was sitting in my room when I kinda heard my little "design sidekick" (as I like to call her), say: "Hang your twinkle lights."  It was so subtle and seemed so insignificant that I brushed it off the first two times.  By the third time, I gave in.  As I hung them, I watched my room transform into a more delightful and exciting space.  And, what's even better is  I already had them in the garage! Which means, I didn't spend any money. How great is that?? 

Then, I found a string of star lights (my grandmother used to display in her garden every 4th of July) tucked in my drawer waiting to be hung in a special place.  Since they are so colorful and fun, I knew they would work perfectly in my room, too!  

What You Need: For my space, I used (one) string of 100 white "twinkle" lights.  Depending on how big of an area you have in your room will determine how many lights you will need.  

Visually eyeball your space and imagine how you'd like your twinkle lights to drape/hang. Crisscrossed? I tend to go this route as it evenly distributes the light across a space. Also think of location.  Where exactly would you like to hang them? In the corner of your room? Over your entire space? If you need inspiration, always consult Pinterest for ideas!  

Accessorize.  Don't stop there. Add a layer of balloons to your lights! I was taken with these balloons I had purchased from Curious Workshop in Hermosa Beach, because of the hysterical phrases printed on each one balloon.  Some of them read: "Douchebag" ..... "Cheers, Bitches!" etc.  I originally bought them for my BBQ, which ended up being a hit with my friends, roommates and all that came to the party. But when it ended, the balloons were still charming as ever but sadly sitting on the ground needing another purpose.  Luckily my little "design sidekick" chimed in and gave me the idea to hang them on the lights in my room. And I just have to say: they make me so darn HAPPY. 

Tips. All you need is scotch tape to complete the job.   

Evenly distribute each balloon along the strand of lights, so they have an even amount of space between each other!

Voila - you've got a a festive party atmosphere in your space!

Say "Yes" to Unconventional. Seriously, don't be afraid to use unconventional items like twinkle lights and balloons in your space.  Sure, balloons are generally used to decorate Christmas trees or outdoor spaces.  But they can light up your room and give it a festive look.  Besides, if you're enjoying it, who cares if it's outside of the "norm"? 

Look out for more interior decor posts that will hopefully inspire your space to become more fun and enjoyable.  It's my intention for you to have a room to increase your level of happiness every time you come home.  

As always, let me know your thoughts or if you have questions.  You can leave it below or email me at!  

Until next

Your Beachonista   
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