The Rich Life On a Budget

Stella Carakasi Winners, BlogHer ’14, and a Short Break

I am pleased to announce the three winners of the Stella Carakasi giveaway:

Patricia B., Carolyn D. and Missy.

All three winners have been contacted via email.


If you signed up for the Stella Carakasi email subscription, check your in-box later this week for a special offer from them. And be sure to check out their fantastic summer sale going on right now!

Stella Carakasi Sale

BlogHer ’14 was quite an experience. I am still recovering from the action-packed three-day event.

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to some of today’s most dynamic and inspiring women speak. Arianna Huffington, Kerry Washington, Jenny Lawson and Kara Swisher were my favorites, but they were all interesting and uplifting. There was certainly no shortage of creative, brilliant and enterprising women at BlogHer ’14.


I attended two classes and although I did take away a few pieces of useful information, I didn’t learn as much as I had hoped. But that’s okay. Everything considered, it was a positive, eye-opening experience.


In case you’re wondering, there were no karaoke or open mic experiences for me, thankfully. But I did manage to tap into my extroverted side long enough to dance up a storm with Malia at the closing night party, featuring Rev Run of Run-D.M.C.


The most valuable thing I gained from the conference is more certainty about what I want for myself – both personally and professionally. That alone was worth the time and expense. My priorities have already shifted. I am managing my time better, doing the things I enjoy with people who inspire me to be and do my best, and I’m taking better care of myself both physically and emotionally.

My newly found clarity allows me to see I am due for a short vacation from the blog, something I usually only take when I go on long vacations. I have a lot on my plate over the next week including a looming freelance writing deadline and an upcoming stay and review of  Warwick San Francisco Hotel. I am attending Hat Day at Wine Country Races at the Sonoma County Fair as a guest of Malia’s, shooting more Ageless Makeup videos with Veronica and I want to squeeze in some wardrobe and kitchen decluttering. I am long overdue for a good clutter purge!

I will be all caught up and back to business as usual on Wednesday, August 6th for How I Wear My: White. If you’d like to be featured in the next HIWM, please send a photo of you wearing something white along with a brief description of your outfit to howiwearmy (at) yahoo (dot) com.


Have a rich week!



Off to BlogHer ’14!

I’m off to BlogHer ’14 in San Jose today!


This is my first time to BlogHer or to any blog conference or convention, for that matter, and I have little idea what to expect. I am trying not to know too much because to be frank, the more I learn the more my introverted side gets a little freaked out. Terms like ‘open mic’, ‘karaoke’, and ‘dance party’ keep popping up here and there and it makes me nervous. I start imagining myself hiding out by the hotel’s pool reading O Magazine rather than at the conference. But I know that won’t happen. I’m usually a joiner, even when it means doing something outside my comfort zone. But I draw the line at karaoke.

Besides, there is much more to this three-day conference than events geared toward the fearless extrovert. There will be informative sessions to attend on topics like videos, publishing, monetizing, technology, advertising and more. And there will be some fascinating speakers: Ariana Huffington, Kerry Washington, and The Bloggess, just to name a few.

Yesterday I spent the morning packing. I devoted a good deal of time to making sure I brought everything I want and need to have fun, be comfortable, get involved and stay connected.

What I bring to the long days of sessions is important. My hotel is at least a five-minute walk from the convention center and could be much longer depending on where my room is located. I want to have everything I need at my disposal and I want my hands as free as possible. I chose a small cross-body bag. This Fossil bag is admittedly not the most stylish thing I own, but it’s practical and simple.


Since there is not a lot of space in this bag, I had to choose carefully what I wanted to have with me:

~ Lip gloss

~ Concealer for dark circles, blemish and brown spots.

~ Small mirror

~ iPhone with Mophie battery-boosting cover

~ Business cards from Moo with my photo on them so people have a better chance of remembering me.


 ~ Cash, credit cards, ID

~ Louis Vuitton card case to hold business cards, cash, credit cards and ID.

~ 2 pens

~ My room key, once I get it.

~ Hand santizer without triclosan

~ Mints

~ Small, thin notebook with a slot for keeping other people’s business cards.

~ A few loose Advil and some Band-Aids in the side pocket because you never know when a headache or a nasty blister will strike.

For the room I packed some things I don’t normally take on trips. I brought instant coffee packets, protein and snack bars, sleepy-time tea, and some crackers and nuts, enough for a crowd. I am ready for anything!


I also packed my swimsuit and a couple of O Magazines…just in case!


Have you ever been to an out-of-town convention or conference?

What special items did you bring along?

Make it a rich day!

I’ll be Instagramming while at BlogHer if you’d like to follow along!




P.S. Don’t forget about the Stella Carakasi giveaway going on now. Three winners will be chosen on the 29th!