June 26, 2014
Google Android Lawn

Google Android Lawn

June 26, 2014


Someone once told me that the best place to work in the world was Google and after visiting their HQ in Mountain View, CA I had no doubt that this was true. The statues are based on the code names for versions of Google's Android mobile operating system, which are named after desserts. Imagine how cool would it be to ride one of those cute colorful bikes around your workplace everyday?

Apart from this, Google employees get many other perks. Give employees enough reasons to stick around and you'll likely see productivity go up. Why would you want to head home when everything you need is at work? Free haircuts, fully equiped gyms, table tennis, billiards or foosball are among their benefits.

Would you like to work for a company like this? What's your dream job?
Let me know on the comments below.

Cristina xo 


June 23, 2014
Macarons in Madrid

Macarons in Madrid

June 23, 2014


I'm going to be a busy bee for the next few days. Which means I won't be working on the blog as much as I'd like to or won't have time to relax and indulge in little pleasures such as coffee with macarons.

The good news is that the summer holidays are coming soon and I have tons of projects in mind for the blog, so stay tunned!

By the way, if you are looking for macarons in Madrid, Moulin Chocolat (Alcalá, 77) is the place to go. They are the best I've had in Spain so far. They have all the flavors you can imagine and you can also chose the presentation whether you want them in long boxes -like in the photo above- or square ones.

Have a great week and thanks for reading,
Cristina xo
June 21, 2014
Words to live by ...

Words to live by ...

June 21, 2014

I've always thought of myself as a stylish person instead of a fashionable one. I don't like to follow all the trends and I definitely don't like to look like everybody else. I like to wear what I like and what suits me. For instance, I will never wear Birkenstocks because I don't like them and I will never wear boyfriend jeans because they don't suit my type of body. However, I love rompers and I like to wear nude heels because they make my legs look longer. Sometimes, I see a garment that is not on fashion yet and I'll think "oh, how original, nobody has this" unfortunately a few weeks later is on every single fashion blog... Don't get my wrong, I love fashion blogs and they are a great source of inspiration for me, but sometimes they are too repetitive. Take the case of kimonos. I saw the cutest kimono on the Abercrombie website back in January, right now there's a kimono plague so I'm glad I did not get it. Do you have the same feeling?

Have a great Saturday,
Cristina xo
June 16, 2014
Hearst Castle

Hearst Castle

June 16, 2014









Hearst Castle is my favorite place in California and one of my favorite places in the world. It's how I've always imagined paradise to be like. Resting on a hilltop of California's Santa Lucia Mountains, Hearst Castle commands a breathtaking view of the Pacific Ocean and San Simeon Bay. It is half-way between San Francisco and Los Angeles (about a 4h drive from either city). Casa Grande features 165 rooms and 127 acres of gardens, terraces, pools, walkways surrounded by beautiful flowers and the world's largest private zoo. Most rooms are furnished with an impressive collection of Spanish and Italian antiques and art. The outdoor pool is called the Neptune Pool and the indoor one is the Roman Pool. I could hardly keep myself from jumping in the pool during the tour!

Most of the buildings were designed by San Francisco architect Julia Morgan for newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, who died in 1951. The Hearst Corporation donated the property to the state of California in 1957. Since that time it has been maintained as a state historic park where the estate, and its considerable collection of art and antiques, is open for public tours.

If you are in California, visit the castle if you get the chance, I assure you it's totally worth it.
Have a great Monday and thanks for reading,
Cristina xo
June 11, 2014
How to Look Slimmer in Photos

How to Look Slimmer in Photos

June 11, 2014

I use Photoshop to edit my photos. I think it's one of the best inventions of the digital era. However, I'm against it when it comes to modifying your appearance like they do in fashion editorials. I prefer to see real bodies and faces. Nevertheless, we all like to look beautiful in photos and there are ways to look better in them, it's all a matter of how you pose. Here are 10 tricks that will make you look slimmer in photos:


  • Wear dark clothes: black is not only the most elegant color, it's also the most flattering.
  • Keep your chin up and out: this will make your neck look longer and you will avoid the very much feared double chin.
  • Pull your shoulders back and stick your chest out.
  • Don't press your arms to your body. Keep your arms slightly away from your body or put your hand on your hip like Blake is doing in the picture. Your arms will look slimmer.
  • Experiment with selfies to find your best angle. I never post selfies online, I don't like them. But I must admit that they are extremely useful to see what looks best for you.
  • Cross your ankles if you are sitting and wearing a dress or a skirt, you will look leaner.
  • Twist your body slightly to the side, you will look slimmer. A straight body shot shows you at your widest. 
  • Avoid bulky clothes, they will make you look heavier than you actually are. I learned this when I took a photo wearing a cape. I love capes, they are on fashion but there are not flattering in photos at all!
  • Sit down or stand up straight. A good posture is always important, not only when taking a photo. Apart from being the best for your back, you also look more confident if your back is straight.
  • Avoid a low angle: for a more flattering photo, position your camera slightly above your eye line.

I hope you find these useful! Have you got any other tricks to look slimmer in photos?
I'd love to read your thoughts on the comments below,
Cristina xo

Photo via Pinterest
June 9, 2014
Mondays We Cook: The Perfect Burger

Mondays We Cook: The Perfect Burger

June 9, 2014

I've tried many different types of burger all around the world. I've even had a sweet burger in Las Vegas where the bread was a doughnut, the meat chocolate, tomato was a strawberry, lettuce a kiwi and the cheese was substituted by a slice of passion fruit jelly. It was scrumptious!

But for me the perfect burger is the one you make at home. You can choose the ingredients and you know for sure they are fresh and healthy.

These are my favorite ingredients:

A bun of freshly baked bread from your favorite bakery. There are few things as delicious as warm, crunchy bread.

Make the burger from scratch. I usually buy fresh minced meat and shape it like a burger. I use a mixture of breadcrumbs and parsil to batter it. The quantity of meat you use is up to you, for me 120gr (4.2 oz) is enough. I fry it in a pan with virgin extra olive oil till it's well-done (I like my meat that way).

A slice of Manchego cheese. In my opinion, the best cheese in the world ; ) Once you put it on top of the hot meat it will melt...yum!!

Veggies. I only use tomato and lettuce -sometimes onion too- but you can always get creative and add whatever you want.

Mayonnese. Not the most healthy choice but I like to add a teaspoon of mayo to my burger. As a healthier option you can add ketchup.

What's for you the perfect burger?
Let me know on the comment below.

Have a great Monday and thanks for reading,
Cristina xo
June 5, 2014
Confessions of a Chocolate Addict: Oreo Cake

Confessions of a Chocolate Addict: Oreo Cake

June 5, 2014

I discovered Oreo Cake at the Cheesecake Factory, before Oreos were just the delicious sandwich cookie that came with instructions. You know twist, lick and dunk ; ) 

However, I find interesting that the Oreo cookie is being used as an "ingridient" in many delicious treats. For example, you can find Oreo Fudge Sundae, Banana Split Oreo, Oreo Milkshake..., etc. I also recommend Oreo ice-cream if you haven't tried it yet.

Oh boy, I'm craving chocolate as I'm writing this post!  

Are you ready to bake an Oreo Cake? Here's the recipe:

Ingredients:

Chocolate Layer Cake
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 and 1/2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
1 cup full fat sour cream or full fat Greek yogurt, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup hot coffee or hot water
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 15.25 ounce package Oreos

Oreo Cream Filling
1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup shortening
2 and 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons milk or cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Chocolate Buttercream
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup milk or cream
16 additional Oreo cookies, pulsed into a fine crumb

Directions:

Position oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat to 350F degrees. Generously spray two 9-inch cake pans with nonstick spray. Line the bottom of the pan with Oreos in a single layer. Set aside.

In a large bowl, blend the cocoa powder, sugar, cake flour, baking soda, and salt together on low speed for 30 seconds. Add the eggs, oil, sour cream, and vanilla and mix for 1 minute on medium-low speed.

Remove the bowl from the mixer and add the coffee and chocolate chips; stir to combine. 

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans over the Oreos. Bake for 28-32 minutes. Allow cakes to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack.

While the cake cools, make the Oreo Cream Filling. In a large bowl, using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and shortening together on high speed until fluffy. Add the confectioners' sugar, 1 cup at a time, alternating with the milk/cream and vanilla. The filling will be very thick, but you may add more milk/cream if you prefer. Set aside in the refrigerator.

While the cake cools, make the Chocolate Buttercream. In a large bowl, using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter on high speed until fluffy, about 1 minute. Beat in the cocoa powder and vanilla on low speed, then add the confectioners' sugar 1 cup at a time, alternating with the milk/cream. The buttercream will be thick. Set aside in the refrigerator.

Once the cakes are cooled, assemble the cake. Place 1 cooled layer on a cake stand or large plate, Oreo cookie side down. Using an offset spatula or knife, cover the top with a 1-inch thick layer of Oreo Cream Filling. Top with the 2nd cake, Oreo cookie side up. Cover the tall layer cake with chocolate buttercream. Working quickly, cover the cake in Oreo crumbs. This will get a little messy, but just pat them up the sides with your hands and all over the top of the cake.


Slice and serve cake. Leftover cake may be covered and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Serves 10-12

June 3, 2014
The "Hole" Picture

The "Hole" Picture

June 3, 2014


One of my favorite photography tricks is photo-framing. Tree branches or flowers will provide great frames for your pics. Architectural elements can be used as well as you can see in the first photo. Next time you are out with your camera, take a look around you before taking a snapshot. Your photos will look way more professional.

These snaps were taken in Ribadesella, a coastal town in the Spanish region of Asturias.

Cristina xo
June 1, 2014
Summer Ready: Denim Romper

Summer Ready: Denim Romper

June 1, 2014





Rompers are one of the "it" items this summer. This one is just perfect, the denim is as soft as velvet which feels wonderful on your skin and the ethnic detail -also a trend this season- adds the perfect final touch. Since I want the romper to stand out, I'm pairing it with simple accessories.

In your opinion, what items are a must-have this summer?
Let me know in the comments below,
Cristina xo