Meet the Squad aka My Furry Babies

Meet the Squad aka My Furry Babies, Dog mom, melrodstyle, furry babies, boo boo kitty, tootsie, kuso, marley, hennessy, dogs, cat, puppy, senior dogs, meet my family,

MEET THE SQUAD AKA MY FURRY BABIES

Going off the usual fashion topics here, and talking all about my little ones. I previously mentioned my little big family in my 20 Fun Facts About Me post, but wanted to share a little more about them since you get to see a glimpse of my personal life on Insta stories. Thought it only made sense since I share my babies with you guys quite often on the gram (@melrodstyle).

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When George and I moved in together, we instantly became The Brady Bunch.

Tootsie: (My dog) My little 12 year old baby, the queen, the one who runs the backyard world, the feistiest little nugget you’ll ever meet. I’ve had her since she was only a few weeks old. Her and Kujo grew up together, so they’re besties for the restie. Tootsie was originally my sister’s dog, but she couldn’t keep her.

Kujo: (My dog) The only boy from the bunch, my old little man. He’s also 12 – going on 13 this year. He’s the sweetest, but most stubborn lil dude I’ve ever met. I’ve also had him since he was a puppy – he use to fit on the palm of my hand. Kujo was originally my sister’s dog as well, but wasn’t able to keep him. I technically wouldn’t have any dogs if my sister didn’t give me Tootsie and Kujo. Also, I know most are thinking “why the name Kujo?” “Is he a vicious dog?” The answer is I don’t know and no he is not a mean dog. He’s Kujo with a K not Cujo like the movie… lol.

Hennessy: (George’s dog) My little lady. She’s the calmest from the group. Very chill and friendly. She’s also up there in age. She likes to pick on Tootsie from time to time, but she wouldn’t hurt a fly. If anything Tootsie is the one who has nipped her a few times (smh). She was originally George’s cousin’s dog, but due to moving they couldn’t keep her. Same with her. We didn’t give her the name Hennessy, she already had that name when George took her in.

Boo Boo Kitty: (George’s cat) The sassiest of them all. The one who truly runs my world. She’s very independent, doesn’t like to cuddle (only on her terms), also senior. Her routine consists of sleeping, eating, pooping, sleeping, meowing my ear off to feed her tuna, and sleeping. She loves sleeping on our stomach or back depending on how we’re laying down. She doesn’t like children. She hides whenever our nieces and nephews come over. She was originally George’s sister’s cat, but couldn’t keep her due to developing some allergies. See a pattern here? When we first moved in together, Boo Boo was not a fan of me AT ALL. She treated me like I was her stepmom (lol). No, but seriously she did, but that didn’t last for long. She warmed up to me and started coming around. Now we’re besties and always likes to sleep on my lap.

Marley: (Our dog together) The puppy. The most playful and hyper one. She’s almost 2. Like Hennessy, she also likes to pick on Tootsie. George and I rescued her from a shelter last year. So basically, if my sister kept Tootsie and Kujo, and if George’s cousin and sister kept Hennessy and Boo Boo, we’d only have one dog – Marley.

FUN FACTS:

We didn’t name any of the babies, except Marley.

Marley has yet to meet face to face with Boo Boo. Not sure how that would work out so trying to avoid that interaction from ever happening.

Boo Boo doesn’t use a kitty litter. She’s like a dog. She will scratch our closet door when she wants to go outside, and she’ll scratch the front door to come back in. She’s literally the best cat ever.

Tootsie is deadly afraid of Boo Boo.

Hennessy was once attacked by a raccoon – sad story but true.

Kujo loves to shake hands.

 

Whoa major info. overload. Well there you have it. A little more about my little big family.

 

If you guys have any questions or want to know more about my babies, feel free to comment below. Also, if there are any topics you’d like me to blog about, let me know. 🙂

xo

My Thoughts on Loop Giveaways and Like / Comment Pods

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My Thoughts on Loop Giveaways and Like / Comment Pods

I miss the days when Instagram was easy, stress-free, and not having to worry about how to go around the “new algorithm changes” (literally rolling my eyes as I type this). Remember when you could get 600 likes with less than 10k followers? Or when your feed wasn’t controlled by Instagram’s new formula? Nowadays, you can have 100k followers with only 600 likes, if that (smh).

With the new changes, one must find ways to stay relevant in the blogger world. In other words desperate times calls for desperate measures… I’m talking about Loop Giveaways that have been all over your feed (guilty), and Like/Comment Pods (keep scrolling to read).

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photos: Leslie Rodriguez

LOOP GIVEAWAYS

As much as it’s annoying to see nothing but loop giveaways on my Instagram feed, I think it is appropriate to do one or two, not three in a day or in a week. Spread them to throughout the months. I made the mistake of doing two within two weeks only because I didn’t realize how close the giveaways were going to be (my bad). I won’t be doing that again.

Although a lot of people have their own thoughts and opinions about loop giveaways and are not fans of them, I am here to say that I see both sides. Some may think it’s like buying followers, but I have to disagree because someone actually ends up winning an amazing gift, while buying followers will only get you fake/ghost followers. These loop giveaways have their pros and cons.

Pros: Influencers who participate in these giveaways have a chance to gain more exposure from a wider audience, which means more followers. This is a pro, especially on a brand’s perspective since, unfortunately a lot of brands care more about quantity versus quality.

Cons: After the giveaway is over, you lose followers (not all but most), which is pretty standard and expected.

It really depends on how you look at it. The way I see them is that it definitely helps your blog/Instagram get recognition. The new followers might not have even known about your blog or Instagram, which can help in your advantage if they like your feed and stick around. OR, perhaps these accounts who are entering these giveaways are just in it for the free stuff (also pretty normal), and are only following for a chance to win, period. It’s really difficult to gage these loop giveaways, but I suggest every influencer who is trying to build their account to try a giveaway to see how they like it. If it didn’t matter about the number of followers you have on Instagram, then none of the above would be relevant. Unfortunately, as a full time blogger (I’ll speak for myself) we have to make sure our numbers keep growing and our engagement is high, which leads me to Like/Comment Pods…

Would I do another loop giveaway? Yeah, maybe. Maybe not. I don’t think the loop giveaways helped my account at all. If anything I gained a ridiculous amount of followers during the last loop giveaway I participated in, and am still losing followers (most likely followers who were just looking to win something and not necessarily like my account) now –  but I can’t stress about it. I know why I’m losing, and it’s because of the other accounts who participated in this same loop giveaway. If I learned anything about these giveaways, it’s that you need to make sure that the other accounts are similar to yours or relevant. You can’t have an account who is promoting cleaning supplies be in the same giveaway as someone who focuses on fashion, beauty, etc… Also, a lot of these accounts that were a part of the same loop giveaway as I was were international, which means the majority of their followers only spoke Spanish or a different language, and since I speak mainly English, of course they would not stick around. It didn’t make sense. I understand that 100%. Again, my bad. I’m definitely going to try to host more giveaways on my own and see how that works out. Not only for exposure but for my followers because I luv ya. 😉

 

LIKE / COMMENT PODS

For those of you who are not familiar with these pods, they are DM groups through Instagram or through the Telegram app (I’m sure there are others) with different bloggers who share their Instagram posts for the group to like and or comment on each other’s posts. It’s another way to support one another. I briefly mentioned my thoughts about it on my 5 Instagram Pet Peeves blog post. Very similar to my thoughts on loop giveaways – I’m not against them. My only issue is when other bloggers do not catch up, meaning like or comment on your posts. The way it works is that you must be caught up with whoever is involved in the group by liking and or commenting before sharing your posts with the group. Some follow rules, while most do not… this is based off my experience by the way. I had to leave a few groups because I felt like I was abiding by the rules while others were using lame excuses like “sorry no wifi, will catch up later” yet still share their post. This topic is silly, really. And I’m sure more for those who are reading this who are not bloggers, but this is the blogging world we live in.

Anywho, these are my thoughts on loop giveaways and like/comment pods based off my experience. I would love to hear your thoughts and comments.

xo

 

SHOP THE LOOK:

Chambray Jumpsuit | Sandals | Sunglasses | Bag

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Etsy Picnic Basket Bags Under $100

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Last year, we were introduced to the basket bag. Today, still the most wanted, high in demand bag this season is none other than the rattan basket bag or what most people call – the picnic basket bag… You might’ve seen this bag flooding your Instagram feed – whether it’s an influencers wearing it or your favorite celebrity. This bag is all the rage.

I’ve put together a list of some of my favorite basket bags (all under $100) that I found on Etsy. Begin slideshow by clicking left arrow above. 

Let me know which is your favorite bag.

xo

 

SHOP THE LOOK:

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Farfetch Summer Guide: Los Angeles

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I’m an LA girl, and although I’ve called LA my home since I could remember, there is so much to see, places to visit, food & drinks to enjoy that I still have yet to visit… you name it! So when Farfetch invited me to join them on an LA adventure, I couldn’t resist.

 

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FIRST STOP

There were three blogger groups. My group met at the cutest most chic boutique: Loit, where we received a Farfetch gift, and had an on-site photographer for the entire day. Hashtag YASSS!

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SECOND STOP

Followed by drinks and small bites at the Rosy Oyster. There was a complimentary piercing station, courtesy of J. Colby Smith’s Adrian D. Castillo.

I got two ear piercings, who am I?! 

 

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THIRD STOP

After that, we departed to meet the rest of the bloggers at the Marciano Art Foundation.

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FINAL STOP… last, but not least.

We ended the evening at Mama Shelter, and got glammed by the Glam Squad right before dinner. Dinner was beyond amazing!

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I had an amazing time. It was fun-filled adventurous day with Farfetch.

If you are ever in LA or visiting for a few days, I highly recommend visiting all these places.

Thank you to the Farfetch team for the wonderful experience.

xo

Hosting Tips for a Successful Party with H&M

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Backyard parties and BBQs are so much fun. Hosting these parties can be quite the opposite though. Being a host takes a lot of effort and is a lot of work. The good thing is that there is no right way to host a party, and there are no limits to hosting a cool party either.

Whether you love being the hostess with the mostess, or if the idea of hosting a party stresses you out, but are planning a get-together at your place anyway, then don’t worry. I’ve listed a few tips that help me prepare a fun, stress-free party.

 

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home decor, home inspiration

Whether you’re hosting indoors or outdoors, here are just a few hosting tips based from my experience that can help you plan a very smooth party this Summer.

  1. Clean & organize throughout the week leading up to your party. This will help relieve stress, and avoid feeling overwhelmed the day(s) before the big bash.
  2. Prepare cocktails in advance, and always keep wine and/or champagne refrigerated. Options is key.
  3. Avoid serving difficult/messy dishes, meaning try to stay away from dishes that will get all over the place, specially if it’s a kid-friendly party. Stick to tried-and-true recipes because trying something new the day of your party can go really really bad. Or try maybe hiring a taco man or ordering out.
  4. Have enough food and drinks. This is George’s tip by the way. Know approximately how many guest you are planning to expect.
  5. Be ready early. Set aside enough time for you to get ready. The last thing you want is to be in the middle of blow drying your hair while your guest are all waiting around bored AF.
  6. Having an outdoor bathroom is SO CONVENIENT. This will help you keep your place inside clean and have to worry less about cleaning more areas in your home. Trust me, an outdoor bathroom is life changing lol. But don’t worry if you don’t have an outdoor bathroom. This tip doesn’t apply to everyone. Perhaps rent a portable bathroom if you are trying to avoid indoor foot traffic.
  7. Make sure to have enough seating areas in your backyard for your guest to be able to relax. If you’re limited on chairs, maybe lay out blankets, pillows and cushions to create a floor seating. It’s the easiest and perfect way to add extra seating.
  8. Entertainment is very important. Create a music playlist and have it playing before your guest arrive. Have games out for guest to play, such as corn hole or even drinking games. Obviously if you’re hosting a kid-friendly party then have something to entertain them as well. Or if you don’t have any kids (like me), but your friends do, then maybe advice the parents beforehand that you do not have anything to entertain them with, so suggest for them to bring their own toys.
  9. Put away anything valuable or anything you do not want to get ruined, ESPECIALLY if you are expecting kids to attend.
  10. Have a cocktail and relax because you’ve worked so hard. After all, you’ve earned it. CHEERS!

I hope you find these tips very helpful for your next get-together. If anyone has any tips to add on, please feel free to comment as I’m always looking for new recommendations for hosting a successful partay!!!

 

xo

 

All home decor are from H&M and are listed below to shop!

Jacquard-weave Cotton Rug

Knit Cushion Cover Pillow

Crocheted-front Cushion Cover Pillow

Scalloped-shaped Metal Vase

Stone-like Metal Vase

Large Glass Vase

Small Metal Candle Lantern Holder

Large Metal Candle Lantern Holder

Stoneware Toothbrush Mug

Metal Napkin Holder

Jacquard-weave Bath Mat

Jacquard-weave Tassel Bath Mat

Patterned Seat Cushion

Cotton Seat Cushion

Jute Laundry Basket Hamper

Clear Glass Vase

Palm Leaf Coasters

Glittery Placemats

Patterned Cotton Rug

Velvet Cushion Cover Pillow

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SHOP THE OUTFIT:

Dress by Peixoto (similar) | Sandals | Sunglasses | Earrings 

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Elevating My Morning with Nespresso

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When I wake up every morning, the first thing I look forward to is a cup of Nespresso. It’s no surprise that I am a serious coffee aficionado. Coffee plays a big part of my everyday routine, and if you follow me on Instagram, then you’d agree that my feed is filled with lots of coffee and latte drinks. I am thrilled to be partnering with the Nespresso “One Touch to Extraordinary” VertuoPlus to share how I elevate my mornings with simple pleasures of coffee.

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I truly believe that you’ll have an amazing day if you begin your morning on a good note. If your mornings already feel rushed, then most likely you will end up having a very hectic day. It’s all about positive vibes and good energies and pausing even if it’s for a few minutes. It’s so easy to get caught up in life and not take a moment to yourself. I know I am guilty of it, especially since I am always on the go – whether it’s to meetings or photo shoots one after another, events or traveling. It’s easy to rush out of the house and not take “me time”. Which is why I’ve made it a priority in my everyday morning routine that as soon as I get up, right before beginning my day and being glued to the computer working nonstop, I set aside 20-30 minutes to have a seat and enjoy my Nespresso. And in those moments, I like to catch up on my reading – or sometimes do absolutely nothing but pause and enjoy some quiet time… just me and my Nespresso.

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The VertuoPlus’ one touch to extraordinary is so easy to use, because with the touch of one single button, you can make the most out of your mornings while enjoying the best coffee – and who wouldn’t want that?! It’s so convenient having the VertuoPlus’ in my life, especially since I’m constantly on the move.

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I alternate between a hot and iced cup of Nespresso coffee in the mornings depending on my mood. May I add that I make an AWESOME iced cinnamon latte?! With that said, I’m so excited to share my iced cinnamon latte recipe. Cinnamon is one of my favorite spices, and this drink is inspired by my recent trips to Mexico. It is really easy and simple to make, and perfect for summer.

 

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Iced Cinnamon Latte Recipe

 

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cup of ice
  • 1 capsule Voltesso
  • 1/8 tsp of Ground Cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon of almond milk or of your choice (try cashew milk for a sweet alternative)

 

*** I don’t add creamer because I like the natural taste of my Nespresso and don’t want it to overpower the taste or take away from it.

 

Preparation

  • Brew capsule with ice already in cup.
  • Add milk of your desire at the end.
  • Followed by cinnamon on top.
  • Add a straw, stir and enjoy!

 

A special thank you to Nespresso for helping me get the most out of my mornings, because a good day starts with Nespresso.

 

*This post is in partnership with Nespresso but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Puerto Vallarta Diary – part 2

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It’s clearly no surprise that Mexico has won my heart the past month or two. I’ve traveled to Mexico in the last couples of weeks more times than I have EVER. Don’t believe me? Click here, here, here… oh and here.

So when I had the opportunity to visit Puerto Vallarta (for the 2nd time in a month by the way), I instantly jumped at the thought. I practically already had my bags packed, totally kidding… kinda.

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We stayed in the most charming, romantic, breathtaking, jaw-dropping… you name it. I can literally keep going… boutique hotel – Casa Kimberly. And when I mean charming and romantic, you would think Enocha and I were on our honeymoon. No, but in all seriousness, Casa Kimberly is the perfect place to stay for a quick romantic getaway, but also great for a girl’s trip. I wish I knew about this hotel before because George and I would’ve stayed here for our honeymoon in a heart beat. Not to mention, the food, the service and every detail of this place was just so spot on and amazing. Just talking about it makes me miss this place so much (insert crying emoji here).

 

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Besides the GORGEOUS hotel, everything around the hotel was walking distance to the main spots in town. We were just a few blocks away from El Malecon and the beach… can it get any better than that?!

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Puerto Vallarta, once again you blew my mind away!

I can’t wait to go back!

xo

Puerto Vallarta with Primark

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As you know, I was recently in Puerto Vallarta for the second time this month… I know what you’re thinking. 

I’m so happy I was able to partner with Primark during my trip because whenever I’m traveling somewhere warmer, I like to pack light and find ways to wear same items more than once. Having Primark in Puerto Vallarta made my trip/life a whole lot easier than usual, because I was able to wear some of these items more than once.

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I love when you can use a one-piece bathing suit as a bodysuit under a pair of denim shorts.

 

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This romper was perfect for a bikini coverup, which also doubled as pajamas. The comfiest to lounge in. 🙂

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If you’re not familiar with Primark, then get to know them because they have the cutest stuff: from babe-worthy beach buys to street style wear. The best part is that their items are not only trendy, but they’re super affordable, too! Major WINNING!

Visit their website here: https://www.primark.com/en-us/homepage

xo

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Cancun

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Cancun, you took my breath away.

For those who have never been to Cancun, I would definitely recommend visiting. The first time I visited Cancun was when I was a baby, so obviously I wasn’t able to appreciate it.

This time around we took a family trip, which was amazing! It’s always nice spending time with family, especially with my nieces. We stayed at the Oasis Resort, which is perfect for a family trip. If you’re not traveling with kids or family, I would suggest to stay somewhere else because this resort was very kid friendly. Nothing wrong with that but if that’s not your cup of tea, then definitely would suggest to stay at a different hotel.

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Day 1: Straight from the plane, we went to the beautiful Isla Mujeres, where we took a boat ride around the island and into town to have lunch. We then went snorkeling and my nieces were able to swim with sharks (I was terrified to be honest).

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Day 2: We spent the entire day at Xcaret, which was incredible. We visited the Xcaret park, where we saw flamingos, parrots, baby quails, fish of all kind, turtles, you name it. We had lunch right by the beach, then ended the night watching one of their amazing shows. Long day but so worth it.

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Day 3: Our third day was very relaxing. We decided to just hang by the pool and beach. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it to Chichen Itza (original plans for day 3) because day 2 really wore us all out. So having a more chill day was definitely in order.

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It was a very fun and very short trip for both George and I, but it was totally worth it.

Hope you enjoy my vlog. Be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel and give this video a thumbs up. Also, be sure to follow me on Instagram to see where I’m headed to next.. (hint hint… it’s Mexico again). 😉

xo

How to Juggle Blog Life and Real Life

 

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How to Juggle Blog Life and Real Life….

Really wish I could say “OMG, it’s SOOO easy. All you have to do is this, this, and that!”  Wish it were as easy as snapping my fingers. That would honestly be amazing and make my life easier, LOL.

Balancing work and play isn’t that easy but you have to always keep in mind to find a happy medium, especially with family and friends.

How to Juggle Blog Life and Real Life

This is how I juggle both my blog life and really life, that have actually helped me stay sane….

  • I try to get all my work done before George gets home from work, so that I can be present and give him my full attention.
  • I always work my schedule around his. On his days off, I will make sure to clear my schedule, whether it’s skipping events (unless it’s a campaign) or scheduling my meetings and appointments on days he’s working.
  • I make sure my blog and social media content is scheduled and done at the beginning of the week so that it is less stressful when I’m trying to do real life things outside of blogging.
  • When I get campaigns while I’m traveling with George, I like to get them out of the way by shooting all content early in the morning, so that we can enjoy the rest of the day, and enjoy each other’s company.
  • I often meet with my blogger friends to shoot content together so that when I’m spending time with family and friends, I don’t bother them for a photo.
  • I always make a list of things I need to get done. What’s important and what can wait. Prioritizing is key.

Sure, things come up and don’t always work out the way you expect them to, but what I’ve learned is having a plan is VERY helpful, and makes your life so much easier.

Besides, happy hubby, happy….

Wait, I don’t think that’s how it goes. 😉

xo