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Posts in “Summer”

Valentines Day Style

Sunday, February 12, 2017

 

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We are now in my hometown of Marinduque in the Philippines. I wish my husband was here with me and the kids now, to enjoy the beautiful island and be together on Valentine’s Day. I’m excited to see him when he arrives in the next few days. Anyways, here’s a new style post for the girls who would like to try an off-shoulder dress. Product details below!

Sunglasses @classiqueapparel

Shoulder bag @thesatcheldiva

Dress @shortcutsapparel

Sandals @erinbyetsy

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First Birthday Photo Shoot

Sunday, September 18, 2016

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Say hello to the precious Zoie who just turned one this month! These are the pictures I took from her first birthday photoshoot, together with her mom and dad. It was so sweet of her mom Charm to create and prepare props for her shoot. They made it so much fun and cute, just like Zoie! I love how Charm did the DIY cardboard sign saying “One”. Great job Mom and Happy 1st Birthday Zoie!

Photography by Em Smith (me)

What’s your ideal photoshoot theme for your little tot?

“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.” Matthew 18:10

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Embracing Summer With Kids

Sunday, August 21, 2016

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Summer is almost over! We’ve been experiencing rain these past few days. Before I know it, it will be cold again! Even though summers in Texas are hot, we embrace them. We try to do some fun activities outside the house, to entertain my two little munchkins. Especially if we don’t have playdates with other moms and kids, these are a must. I wanted to share the simple ways we enjoy summer, without needing to drive.

 

MORNING SUNSHINE

I always try to bring my kids outside after breakfast to see the morning sunshine. Whether walking around the neighborhood, playing on the grass, going for a stroll, or biking I want them to go outdoors. I think it is healthy for them to go out at least twice a day to get fresh air and see nature. It is not quite as hot before 10AM, so that’s the perfect time to enjoy the morning sunshine with kids.

SPLASHING IS LOTS OF FUN!

My kids love to play in the water and get wet! Aside from bringing them to splash pads, I usually let them swim and play in the front yard before their afternoon nap. It’s a win-win because they have fun and can use up all their energy. This causes them to sleep longer (Mama’s Goal!). We used  this pool and put in under a tree for some shade. This pool is affordable and durable. It’s been almost 2 years now since we bought it, and it still looks great. You can also put something like this  Little Tikes First Slide to make this activity more fun!

DIGGING A HOLE

Since I became a parent, I was surprised at how nature offers a lot of entertaining toys for my two kids. They love picking up rocks, acorns, small branches, and are curious about the ants etc. Recently, their favorite activity, especially my toddler’s, has been digging holes. We have been reading a book called Sam and Dave Dig a Hole,and it’s funny to hear from my eldest son about how he wants to find the diamond underground… Well good luck, kid.

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similar One-piece Swimsuit

Any favorite outdoor summer activities with your kid/s that you will miss this coming cold season?

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Feels Like Home: Moving Back to Houston

Monday, August 15, 2016

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Houston is the first place I lived when I moved to the United States. It was where I met new friends, and learned how to drive, not to be shy, and say, “Hi” to people passing by on the street. I made some improvements with my English too. For example, instead of saying, “Turn off the lights” I used to say “Brent, can you close the lights?” He would tease me and reply with, “It’s not a window.” Houston has been a big part of my adjustment with culture, language and style of living. When it came to culture shock, I had so many different experiences with it. I was shocked by things like the large food servings, big fast food drink cups, unlimited refills, etc. I saw other things that amazed me as well, things which are not a big deal for others, like the garbage disposal! I also remember my first year in Houston, I tried to make friends with our neighbors. I knocked on their door and the couple that lived there were so confused when I handed them some dessert. I don’t know if it’s uncommon in the U.S., but in the Philippines it’s common to bring food over to someone who has just moved into the neighborhood. It’s a friendly gesture and way of welcoming them. 

 

A couple weeks ago, we came down to Houston to check out possible places to live, and I’m so thankful that we found one that we like! Brent and I are SO excited that we are finally moving back there in the next few weeks. Due to Brent’s grad school, internship, and post-doctoral fellowship, we have been moving a lot! We’ve gone from Houston to LA, to Dallas, and now back to Houston again. I think we’re experts with packing our stuff now. 😉 Going back to Houston and having our own place to live with our children, are one of the things that we have been praying about for the past year. Now, God has answered those prayers!

 

Here are a few photos I snapped during our trip. We just celebrated our 5th year anniversary! I praise God for teaching us a lot of life lessons concerning love, understanding, and patience. What we’ve learned has helped make our relationship stronger, with unity and hope as a married couple.

 

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I found this J.Crew dress and Talbots handbag in thrift store. But here are other design items to buy for DRESS and HANDBAG :)

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5 years of marriage!

 

P.S. Hello Houston makeup clients, Em Smith makeup artistry is back! For bookings or inquiries, contact me :-)

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Whale Themed Baby Shower Ideas

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Whale themed baby shower ideas also perfect for birthday parties! This theme will inspire you to create summer vibes for your baby shower or child’s party.

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Baby showers are always fun to attend; meeting new people, food, desserts, games, and opening of gifts. One of things that also make me excited are seeing themed decor. A few weeks ago, my sister-in-law Suki, had her baby shower and I was in charge of decorating. The theme was inspired by whales, which Suki chose. The first thing I always do when planning for decorations is going to my favorite site Pinterest.  It’s where I love to pin different ideas.

I made this balloon banner a couple of days before the shower because I was afraid that it would take lot of work and time. But it wasn’t actually that hard. Blowing the balloons was much more difficult than making the actual balloon banner! If you’d like to know how to create this, check out YouTube. There are plenty of tutorials there. :)

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This whale themed was mostly used with balloons and some DIY art work such as the painted whale hanging from the ceiling. This whale was made in an old cardboard and used acrylic. Here are the photos I snap during the baby shower.

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Baby Shower Favors/Giveaways. These were Hershey chocolates covered with blue paper. The center of the blue wrapping paper was cut out to show the word “He” to show the baby’s gender.

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A Bible verse about children.

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Guess the Size of Mom’s Waist. I was really surprised by some of the guesses for Suki’s waistline size… She is not having triplets or quadruplets. 😉

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Messages to the couple where guests wrote a note of advice or encouragement, for their new journey of parenthood.

 

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Cupcakes made by my sister-in-law Alia. Delicious! Am I the only one who feels excited about desserts in baby showers??!

 

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The couple opening the gifts for their baby boy.

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Balloons to add accents on the other side of the living room. I used thread to attach the balloons together. On the bottom right is one of the guest’s baby girl. She is sooooo cute!!! My kids love her!

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Another dessert made by my mother-in-law. I love how she made the waves so nice and neat.

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Meet the mom-to-be, Suki! If you have seen my blog post about “Smokey eyes for Asian Eyes”? That’s her! You can also check out  behind the scene photos of her wedding where I did her makeup. I can’t believe she’ll be having her first child next month!!

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Me and Suki! :-)

If you’re having a baby shower, what theme would you like to have? For pinterest ideas and inspirations, check out my boards HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE

But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 19:14

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6 Easy Steps To Create Glitter Nail Polish

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

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Glitter Nail Polish Tutorial – An easy and fun glitter nail art tutorial that can be worn for summer. Nail tips and products to help you achieve healthy-looking and smoother fingernails.
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Since I am a freelance makeup artist, I always have body glitters in my makeup kit. I use them for my creative makeup work with my clients, like for Halloween events. This time, though, glitter won’t be used on the face but on nails! I’m turning this body glitter into a cool summer sparkle nail polish. Not only is it easy to do yourself, it’s fun too!

Before applying the nail polish, prep your nails. If you have dry and brittle nails like I do, or if you want to maintain healthy-looking nails, I have a recommendation for you! Use a nourishing oil like Sally Hansen Vitamin E Nail and Cuticle Oil on your nails. Massage and leave it overnight to soften your cuticles and keep your nails from breaking. I often like to opt for shorter nails as when my nails are long, they become more dry and prone to breaking. This is especially true as I wash the dishes by hand a lot. he Vitamin E Oil not only strengthens and nourishes your nails, it helps with nail growth too! Plus, it has been salon and dermatologist tested.

Here are 6 easy and fun steps to make your own Glitter Nail Polish: DIY_do-it-yourself_nail_art_polish_glitter_tutorial_sally_hansen_summer_smoothies_fingernails_4

1 Before applying the nail polish, prepare your glitter in a small container that has space for your fingernails to dip in., In this tutorial I used a lipstick cover (yep, my thumb can fit there!:) ).

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2 Next, apply a base coat of nail polish to your clean nails. I use Sally Hansen Complete Care 7-in-1, which also can serve as the top coat. DIY_do-it-yourself_nail_art_polish_glitter_tutorial_sally_hansen_summer_smoothies_fingernails_6

3 Apply the first coat of colored nail polish on the fingernails. I chose a bright orange color (Hot Tamale) since it’s summer. DIY_do-it-yourself_nail_art_polish_glitter_tutorial_sally_hansen_summer_smoothies_fingernails_7 4 Apply the second coat on one fingernail first and immediately dip your finger into the glitter and roll it around to cover the nail polish. Do this for each nail, one at a time so the nail polish stays wet and the glitters stick on.

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5 After you are done putting glitter on all your fingernails, wash off your hand in running water to remove any excess glitter. DIY_do-it-yourself_nail_art_polish_glitter_tutorial_sally_hansen_summer_smoothies_fingernails_9 DIY_do-it-yourself_nail_art_polish_glitter_tutorial_sally_hansen_summer_smoothies_fingernails_10

6 To lock the glitter in, apply a clear top coat. Again, I use Sally Hansen Complete Care 7-in-1 nail polish. I’m impressed with this product as it offers all-in-one convenience, serving as a base and top coat, helping nail growth, strengthening nails, and giving nails a nice shine. It also has a patented formula which includes avocado oil, sea salt, pomegranate extract, and calcium. These ingredients all help to keep your nails moisturized, prevent staining, and give a healthy and smooth appearance. It is long-wearing too!

NAIL TIP: To dry your nails more quickly, have a small bowl of cold ice water ready next to you. Then, simply dip your nails into the bowl and keep them there for 2-3 minutes. DIY_do-it-yourself_nail_art_polish_glitter_tutorial_sally_hansen_summer_smoothies_fingernails_11 nail_polish_base_top_coat_clear_nourishing_mouisturizing_oil_soft_cuticle_strong_nails_em_smith

Here’s where I grabbed my Sally Hansen products at Walmart while I’m doing my errands. Stop by and let me know how Sally Hansen Complete Care 7-in-1 and their Vitamin E Oil works for you! :)

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Have a great week everyone, and stay hydrated!

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Do-It-Yourself Sling Sandals (Perfect for Summer!)

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SimplySmooth #CollectiveBias

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It’s flip flop season y’all! Today, I’m sharing a DIY hack for sling sandals that are really comfy and are much cheaper than in stores. I’ve always wanted to have these types of sandals, and I’m happy that I was able to make them on my own. Plus, I spent less than $5! I love wearing flip flops all the time, whether it’s when my kids and I go out to the park, or when we’re meeting up with friends for playdates. However, sometimes I want to wear something more casual and comfortable. These sling sandals are WINNERS, especially when wearing a dress! If you’d like to learn how I created these sandals, scroll down and enjoy the tutorial!

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Materials you will need:

  • Flip Flops (new or old is fine)
  • Stretch Knit Fabric (You can use an old shirt if the fabric is stretchy)
  • Scissors
  • Marker
  • Ruler
  • Chopstick or small paint brush (anything that can go through the three holes of the flip flops)

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Directions:

  1. You will need 4 fabric straps. Cut two straps that are 5” wide and 22” long (longer or shorter depending on your shoe size), and then cut out two shorter straps at 5” wide and 11” long.  Remove the rubber straps of the flip flops. You can use scissors. TIP: It’s better to use separate scissors for the fabric and for the rubber strap of the sandals to avoid ruining the scissors.

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2. Fold both sides of the long fabric strap along the center. Following the diagram above, fold along the dotted line.

 

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3. Join both ends of the strap together. Then, make a V-shape cut resembling something like a necktie. This way, it will be easier to push the end of the strap into the flip flop hole.

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4. Push the end of the strap with the v-shape into the top hole. I used my paint brush,which I found easier to use than a pencil or a pen. You can use a chopstick as well. After pushing the strap through the hole, knot the strap to secure it.  You can also try the sandals on if you’d like before knotting so you know how tight the fabric straps are. This will allow you to make any necessary adjustments.When you have the fit you want, cut off any excess fabric.

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5. Use the same fold for the short straps. Overlap the short fabric strap over the long fabric strap as shown in the image above.

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And here’s the finished DIY Sling Sandals! They’re super comfy and easy to create. I actually wore these sandals last Sunday to church and they were perfectly comfortable to wear. I matched them with my summer dress, sinceshorts, skirts, and dresses are a must in hot Texas weather..

Another must in hot Texas weather is making sure my legs are moisturized and hair-free. If you shave your legs, you know how shaving can make hair grow back thicker, faster, and can create bumps. When I used to live in the Philippines, I would go to salons to have my legs waxed (it’s a lot cheaper there). Now that I live in the US, I’m glad I’ve found an easy-to-use and safe wax to apply at home. I picked up Sally Hansen wax strips for the body at Walmart. What I love about this product is that I feel confident and hair-free for up to 8 weeks as compared to shaving, where hair comes back after just 3 short days!. Sally Hansen is a well-known and trusted brand when it comes to hair removal products – that’s  why they have been in the business for many years!

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Tips:  For better results, wait for your hair to grow for at least 2-5 days. When removing the strip,pull backwards – NOT upwards. Do this quickly in the opposite direction of the hair growth. Make sure your legs are clean, oil-free, and dry before using the wax strip. I like to use a wet wash cloth and wipe off any excess hair downward in the direction of the hair growth.

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I also tried the microwavable wax for eyebrows, face, and lips. It was my first time waxing my brows. To be honest, I felt worried that my eyebrows would get waxed in half or something like that. However, Sally Hansen offers an eyebrow adhesive as a guideline and these help protect the hairs you don’t want to wax. After finishing my waxing, I realized how easy and painless it was compared to plucking my eyebrows (Ouch!). Again, you won’t get unwanted hair for up to 8 weeks! Sally Hansen eyebrow adhesive also comes with a blue spatula to help you determine if the wax is too hot or when it’s ready to use. Cool isn’t it? DIY_do_it_yourself_sling_sandals_flip_flops_comfy_stylish_lightweight_tutorial_emsmith_sally_hansen_wax_11 DIY_do_it_yourself_sling_sandals_flip_flops_comfy_stylish_lightweight_tutorial_emsmith_sally_hansen_wax_12

How will you wear these sling sandals? To learn more about how to get smooth, hair-free legs, check out these video tutorials
Happy weekday!! :-)

Dear friends, we must love each other because love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born from God and knows God.” 1 John 4:7

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Fresh Face and Glow! (+ SUMMER GIVEAWAY)

Sunday, May 15, 2016

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When I started to do makeup in the Philippines way back 2009, I was introduced to Evian Facial Spray by my fellow makeup artists. They recommended it for my clients, especially for brides. It is well known for making your skin feel fresh, hydrated, and clean before applying makeup. When you’ve finished putting on makeup, you can also spray this on top of your entire face. This will help the makeup stay on longer throughout the day. If you feel your makeup is too powdery or cakey, you can grab your blender sponge and spray the Evian Facial Spray onto it. Then, gently pat down the areas on your face that you feel are powdery or heavy. Not only did I love to use this with my clients, but I loved bringing this with me to the beach, when I was still living in the Philippines. I would use it to help cool down my face under the heat of the sun.

Now that summer is coming, I’m excited to use my 1.7 fl oz travel-sized *Evian Facial Spray in. It is great for traveling since the packaging is leak-proof and TSA-friendly. The size is handy and perfect for my purse too. It also comes in other sizes, 5 oz and 10 oz. If you get the larger sized Evian Facial Spray, it is way cheaper and you can get more product for the price, compared to MAC’s Setting Spray. Evian comes in a canister and creates some fine micro mists when sprayed. This makes it more relaxing for your face when you spray it on. I’m also surprised that the Evian Facial Spray is a great, handy product for a mother like me. With a baby and toddler, I’m glad that it is safe to use for them too. Living in Texas weather, this is great and handy for freshening up my kids’ faces while walking outside and going to the park.

I would especially recommend that you bring this with you in hot weather, like during the summer season. Again, it is so easy to grab and spray on your face to freshen up and keep your face moisturized. With this spray, I can also create a natural highlighting effect for my face and shoulders, without it looking powdery.

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Try to spray the Evian for 2-3 seconds onto your brush, and swipe it off onto your highlighter powder. This technique will help your highlighter stand out even more and make your makeup stay on your skin longer.
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I love to apply highlighter on my upper cheeks, bridge of my nose, and upper lip.
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You can also try to apply it on your collarbone and shoulder so when the light bounces off your skin, it gives you a natural looking glow.

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For you to experience the benefits of this product for yourself, Evian is offering a giveaway to all my readers. 5 lucky winners will receive a summer prize package which includes:

  • A $25 Sephora Gift Card
  • 10 oz evian® Facial Spray
  • Three 1.7 oz. travel size evian® Facial Sprays

(Total package valued at over $75)

Contest ends on May 31, 2016. Enter HERE 

Good luck. :-)

*This product was sent to me by Brandbacker to review. All opinions are honest, true, and my own. Thanks for supporting my blog!:)

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Hello Island Mama is a makeup, DIY, photography, motherhood and lifestyle blog by Em Smith. She is the mother of three boys and a wife, who loves to inspire and encourage others through her works and stories. Based in Houston, Texas. Originally from the Philippines.

"I can do all things through him who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13

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