• beauty and fashion

    OOTD – Red & Orange Professional Outfits

    I’m finally continuing the long-awaited OOTD series! I’ve coordinated many outfits that I love since the last post I did, so I decided to organize them by color so I don’t overwhelm you all with my many looks.

    I’m beginning with red, the first color of the rainbow and the first color of the chakras in Yoga philosophy. This post also includes two orange outfits, which are representative of the second chakra.

    Side note- I finally began teaching the chakra yoga classes I’ve wanted to do since New Year’s on Friday!

    Anyway, below are the looks. Enjoy!

    1. Red Stripes and Bells

    This was an early-spring/end-of-winter look, and I think it packs a ton of attitude. The shirt was my mom’s and the skirt is an oldie from Forever 21.

    These are my favorite Marc Fisher boots!! It is also my favorite birthday purchase #23

    The necklace is a hand-me-down from my mom, and the earrings are alien spaceships I got from Hot Topic.

    2. Yogini

    I love this kimono I got from Target. It totally elevates any outfit I pair it with.

    My comfy grey dress was my mom’s and it’s by a young Russian designer that I found through Teen Vogue when I was in middle school. I honestly don’t know if she still designs or if her store in Manhattan is still there.

    I got my shoes on clearance! They are Franco Sarto and they’re very comfy. I love the silver heel and how unique the color is. It’s like an orange-y red.

    I got my turquoise necklace from a Native American store in the Grand Canyon. It is my favorite purchase from traveling to Las Vegas a few years ago. My earrings were a gift from my mom.

    My blue beaded bracelet is a gift from my mom when she visited my grandma in Puerto Rico. I always ask her to bring me back jewelry when she visits because I love funky jewelry, especially when it’s handmade by someone who shares my heritage.

    3. Orange Orange

    I was really vibing with the color orange the day I put this together lol

    In the chakras, the color orange is related to sexuality and creativity. Perhaps these things were a little heightened for me.

    Anyway, the sweater was my mom’s and it’s a perfect sweater for autumn because of its soft, warm browns. My shirt was probably less than $10 on clearance from Old Navy. My pants are from Kohl’s young professional collection.

    Here’s my look without the sweater!

    My shoes are Indigo Red and they’re so comfy and cute!

    My necklace says “She Believed She Could” on one side, and the other side says “So She Did.” It was a graduation gift from my mom last May.

    My earrings are a gift from my mom from her latest trip to Puerto Rico.

    My eyeshadow look was created using Tarte’s Toasted palette I got for the holidays.

    My bracelet was also from Puerto Rico.

    4. Be Mine, Clementine

    This shirt was a gift from my mom when she went to Anthropology with my sister for my sister’s 21st birthday. Considering how expensive that store is, the shirt isn’t great quality. I am pretty sure it shrunk after washing it once, and that’s without drying it. Thankfully I got it in a big enough size so that it still fits. Otherwise, I love the shirt. It’s very fun and summery.

    My skirt was my mom’s and it’s a perfect casual skirt for work because it’s denim yet it’s about knee-length.

    My earrings are the same as above. My necklace was a stone that my late-grandma had collected, which was then transformed into a necklace.

    I love these shoes.

    Both of my bracelets are handmade from Puerto Rico <3

    What was your favorite look? Let me know in the comments below!

    Also, stay tuned for the yellow and green looks!

    xx Vic

  • Yummy Recipes

    Lentil-Lovin’! – Spiced Moroccan Lentil Recipe Review

    A couple of years ago, my step-grandmother introduced me to the world of lentils. She had shown me a lentil soup recipe that I then cooked on my own until high school consumed my life and I temporarily stopped cooking. I forgot about lentils after that since it’s not a staple in my mom’s Puerto Rican- cooking, or in any other heritage that I am regularly exposed to. It wasn’t until my girlfriend, who is Indian, brought Indian cuisine into my everyday life that I remembered my love for lentils.

    Plus, since I want to make more vegetarian dishes, it’s a great ingredient for a variety of meals!

    I decided to make spiced lentils that I hoped would be similar to a delicious Indian lentil dish I had had. They were not very similar because this lentil dish is Moroccan-inspired, but they were still fantastic! I got this recipe from Minimalist Baker, which is my favorite recipe site as of late. I love this website because they make vegan/vegetarian meals, and many of them are very simple to make. They usually require only a couple of ingredients, most of which I have at home, and they aren’t time-consuming either. I definitely recommend checking them out!

    This recipe called for green lentils specifically…I’m unsure why honestly. I don’t know the difference between lentils. Perhaps it’s akin to differences in beans? I’m a lentil-novice still, so my apologies that I don’t know more.

    I got these lentils from ShopRite, and I thought that compared to other lentils, the green ones were more expensive. That was also because they only had organic green lentils. I don’t know why they didn’t have nonorganic green lentils, but my girlfriend recommended that next time I go to the Indian store to get lentils.

    Aside from lentils, you also need a whole red pepper, onion (I used yellow), tomato paste, fresh garlic, apple cider vinegar, and a crap-ton of spices.

    Then, all you have to do is cook the lentils until tender and blend the other ingredients to make a sauce. Once the lentils are cooked, drain the excess water and mix in the blended sauce. Bam, that’s it!

    The cool thing about this recipe is that you can add as much of the required spices as you want so you can make it as spicy, acidic, sweet, and salty as you want! I will forewarn y’all though to taste it as you go…and maybe to slowly add the fresh spices too.

    I personally feel like I added too much garlic and onion to mine. I thought I used the required amount, although I didn’t measure anything…but because you don’t cook the sauce, the bite of the garlic and onion remains pretty intense. If you have sensitive stomachs, and even if you don’t, perhaps cook the onion and garlic a little before you blend it, or cook the sauce after you blend it…or both! I wanted to try cooking it to see how it affected the flavors, but I didn’t get a chance. I expect to make this again so I’ll try it for next time.

    Anyway, here’s the mixture of the sauce with the lentils.

    Below is the dish with my girlfriend’s spicy Indian rice as well as some fresh parsley and cilantro on top. Another time I had this fish with plain jasmine rice and then another time with my girlfriend’s not-spicy Indian rice, and those ways I had it were better. A super flavorful rice competed too much with this spiced lentil dish.

    The last thing I have to say about this recipe is that I find lentils to be a little confusing to make. The only other time I’ve made them has been in soup, which takes awhile to cook so they end up being prepared properly. In this situation, however, my girlfriend felt that I had undercooked them. I ate all six servings myself and I had no idea. I’m going to watch a lentil cooking video next time to ensure that they are prepared properly.

    Do you like lentils? How do you like them prepared?

    I’m going to make a new lentil soup this week so stay tuned for that!

    xx Vic

  • Mysticism

    Trying Full Moon Rituals?

    As I get deeper into my yoga practice as well as learning about the intricacies of the history of yoga, I have taken a particular interest in spirituality, and what that means to me. One thing I plan to do tonight to explore myself a bit will be to do the Virgo Full Moon Ritual!

    I’ll give you some background on my previous experience with religion and mysticism since most of you don’t know me.

    I’m a queer, multiracial cisgender woman and feminist, and I have not been a religious or spiritual person in about six to eight years. I think the last time I wrote about my spirituality/religious ideals on my blog was in 2013/2014…so clearly it hasn’t been important to me. That started to change when my cousin passed in 2016, I became obsessed with death. I was reading about it and listening to Podcasts about it…and then at some point, I just stopped. I became fascinated with life again.

    This past fall semester in college, I have taken a Mysticism class in the Gender Studies Department, which has definitely played a key role in an interest in spirituality. One of my favorite books that we read from is called Jambalaya by Lusiah Teish. It has caused me to want to read more about Puerto Rican-African religion, Santeria, so I can get more in touch with my identity and my ancestors.

    In the meantime, however, I have been reading up on the religion that Yoga is based on, which is Hindu. I’ve become intrigued by chakras so I bought a book about that to read…I need to finish a book. I have all these partially read books but…I will finish them once I’m done with my thesis!

    Anyway…the point of me delving into a little bit of my personal background with religion, spirituality, and mysticism is basically my long-winded way to explain that this is the first time I will be doing a moon ritual. Unfortunately, I do not have the space nor the supplies to do the full ritual that was sent to me by a lovely woman who is part of the online yoga community that I belong to as well. It’s okay that I won’t be able to do the full ritual though because, for my first ritual, I just want to do the “basics,” which for me is to do the meditation and journaling.

    I will link you to the full ritual I will be following if you want to find out more and possibly try it yourself, though!

    Anyway…I will write another post about actually doing the ritual, which I plan to do later tonight. I hope that it will expose me to my more spiritual side, which I have yet to discover. I hope to gain some clarity about myself and to just…relax and to enjoy it. My professor that taught the Gender Studies Seminar always preached the importance of sitting in silence and lately, I haven’t been getting enough of that.

    Anyway, please let me know if you will try it or if you have done it already! Do you regularly do moon rituals?

    Please comment with suggestions/stories/advice below!

    xx Vic

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