10 ViVAiO DAYS FOR FREEDOM

#vivaiodays raisedbyculture.com
We emptied out a storage unit earlier this year after having it for over 5 years. That’s embarrassing to say and I can’t believe we continued to pay for it that long. Only 25% of what was in that storage unit actually mattered to us and the rest was crap. Crap we spent money on when we bought it and continued to spend money on each and every month for five long years. That was almost $8000 in storage fees when I think about it and it makes me so mad. I’m telling you this because we made a decision right then and there to be more conscious of what we purchase. A big thanks to ViVAiODAYS for showing me the way.

VIVAIODAYS.com is a curated collection of high-quality, sustainably sourced products for young families. I’ll tell you why this is important. Young families like ours and yours have open minds and want to bring up a better future generation. I care, you care. And it goes beyond that. It is respect for the environment, respect for society (diverse work force, no child labor) and respect for customers’ wellness.
#vivaiodays raisedbyculture.com

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Holiday Shopping: Outlets At Orange

#OAO Outlets At Orange 12 Days of Giving raisedbyculture.comThank you to The Outlets At Orange for sponsoring today’s 12 Days of Gift Giving post! #OAO

I don’t like to brag but… I give some pretty awesome gifts.  I put thought in the gifts I give and always choose based on me keeping it for myself. The other factor is a big one: my budget, it is small. My secret: holiday shopping at The Outlets at Orange. We’re talking my absolutely favorite premium outlet shops; Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th, Neiman Marcus Last Call and Nordstrom Rack. Do yourself a favor and pick up a free copy of the Spread Love Holiday Gift Guide by Vogue Market Stylist Cara Crowley, available at Simon Malls. It is on point. Do you know your people?

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How To Prepare For Black Friday

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You cannot successfully do Black Friday without a plan. I know this cause I used to go with my mama back in the days, when my bigs were littles and I wanted to spoil them with all the toys. It was our thing. I would wake up on Thanksgiving morning and she had the ads spread out on the coffee table. We would circle the gifts we wanted to buy and maybe a couple things for ourselves. Our turkey feast was enjoyed and set our clocks. Times were good back then, unemployment was down and no recession meant it was my mama, myself and maybe 50 other people hitting the stores at 5am on Black Friday. We would be home by 10am. It was glorious.

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Brea Mall x Refinery 29 The Shopping Block

#theshoppingblock #foundatsimon raisedbyculture.com

#theshoppingblock #foundatsimon raisedbyculture.com

When I was a kid, the mall was the place to be. It was a ritual every weekend. I’d ask my parents to drop me off for lunch and asked to be picked up a few hours later. Those were the days. I have to give props to Simon Malls for investing money and effort into updating their malls and focusing on good, free events for their guests. I recently attended The Shopping Block – a collaboration with Simon Malls and Refinery 29, the coolest fashion-packed block party with pop-up shops housing R29 style IRL. DIY stations, beauty bars and a sneak peek at up-and-coming local designers, where were you in the 90s?! I headed to my local mall, Brea Mall to check it out with my friend beauty/style blogger Marla of marlitaontherun.com

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My Man’s Smooth Summer

#SmoothSummer raisedbyculture.com

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

#SmoothSummer raisedbyculture.comI can’t believe its almost August.  My family has been a well-oiled go machine since the beginning of this smooth Summer.  It has all been a delicious blur of fun.  Now we’re just being lazy, kicking back at home, relaxing.  Letting the kids make toy messes in the living room, me not putting on my face and Chris… not shaving.  I tease him that he’s letting himself go when he doesn’t shave. I pull out the why can’t you look smooth like Johnny Depp in Cry-Baby and he counters with why can’t you look like Beyonce.  We joke around like that.  It’s funny and keeps our marriage alive.

All jokes aside, my man looks good.  I can’t resist pampering him and that means splurging on a good shaver.  Every man needs a shaver, make it a good one.  He suggests Gillette Fusion ProgIide with new Flexball!  I asked him what his beauty regimen, I mean routine is because I really wanted to know.  I never took into consideration what he has to do to get ready for me.

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3 Must-Have Gold Pieces

Don Roberto Jewelers raisedbyculture.com

Don Roberto Jewelers raisedbyculture.comDisclosure:  The opinions in this article are my own. I do not work for, or with, any brand mentioned in this article, nor do I have any official relationship with them.  I have a relationship with GigaSavvy, for whom I create original editorial content.

Every woman, at some point in their life, needs to have a cute, custom nameplate.  I remember my very first one, it simply said my name, Xenia.  You know in case I forgot.  Just kidding, mom!  It was actually empowering for me then, my name in gold.  I felt special.  My mama kept me flossy since I was school aged.  Not with extravagant jewelry but the must-have gold pieces for every woman’s jewelry box.  I was happy to find three of my favorite pieces available at Don Roberto.  See, they never go out of style.  These are the keepers.

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Shop Amazon on Twitter! #AmazonCart

#AmazonCart #cbias raisedbyculture.com

#AmazonCart #cbias raisedbyculture.com I am a member of Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper amplification for Collective Bias. #cbias

I just bought my own taco truck!  I saw the cuteness drive-by on my Twitter stream by way of Amazon. There are times (many, many times) I’ve seen something pop up on my social networks with no information on how to purchase.  Whatever the reasons, it is so frustrating when you want something, have the cash and can’t buy it because of a lack of information!  I’m excited to share that Amazon and Twitter teamed up to make shopping easier for all of us, you basically use Twitter as a search engine to find items to purchase without leaving your Twitter feed.  After testing it out, I can tell you that my new favorite hashtag is #AmazonCart!  That could be dangerous but I’m all for making life easier especially with my tried and true, most favoritest site to shop, Amazon.

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Welcome To The New Brea Mall!

#newbreamall raisedbyculture.com

#newbreamall raisedbyculture.com
Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post. All thoughts are my own.

I love Southern California.  I’m always saying it on here and very vocal on my social networks. My pride runs deep and I always show love to the places I genuinely adore which makes me so excited to share that the renovation of Brea Mall is finally complete!  The mall was last updated in the 90s and never had identifying signs – do you remember seeing “Foodworks” on the outside – that was actually the name of their food court, that’s gone.  There are now four redesigned entryways that proudly boast “Brea Mall” complete with LED lighting that changes with the holidays.

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New Children’s Play Area At Brea Mall

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Last month was full of fun for Halloween but one of the best things I have ever experienced in my life was the balloon drop for the grand opening of the new children’s play area at Brea Mall.  It definitely makes my top ten list of awesome things I experienced this year.  And trust me, I’ve done some awesome things this year.  My child who loves Brea Mall for the Apple store, Game Stop and Auntie Anne’s now has another reason to beg me to take him to the mall – the new play area has comfy, surrounding seating and get this – charging stations.  Add that to the mall’s free wifi and I am sold!

Features of the new play area which is located on the lower level in front of Macy’s:  a play house featuring a chalk board, and various cars, boats and plane play fixtures inspired by the Simon Kidgits Club characters.   The new area also has new Family Restrooms, which feature five changing stations, two nursing rooms and amenities for both adults and children.

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