Baked Spicy Cauliflower Bites

Friday, November 17, 2017

I have been attempting to eat healthier, but I don't love vegetables and I don't love salads so I have been on a mission to find delicious, easy but healthy food alternatives. Since I love spicy food and winger Wednesdays, queue my new favorite things: Spicy cauliflower bites and ranch. Its so good, you will forget you are eating vegetables.
Here is what you need:

head of cauliflower, cut into large florets

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper

1 cup hot sauce (such as Franks)

1/4 cup of ranch sauce plus Ranch dressing, for serving



1.         Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

2.         To make batter: combine hot sauce , ranch, salt and pepper in a bowl.

3.         Dredge cauliflower in batter until evenly coated. Shake off excess batter and transfer cauliflower to the lined baking sheets.

4.         Bake until the cauliflower begins to turn golden around the edges, about 20-25 minutes.  

5.         Serve with ranch dressing and celery sticks, if desired.

What do you guys think? Would you try these spicy cauliflower bites?

What to Wear to a Work Holiday Party?

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

'Tis the season... well Holiday party season, that is. If you are anything like me, you have already planned all your Holidays outfit for all the parties you are planning to attend. My outfits are planned, but the office holiday bash always require a little more planning than any other.. or is that just me?

I rounded up three outfits that are perfect for the holiday work part:

High low dress.
Light colors aren't most peoples go to for the holiday season but a crisp silver and black dress goes a long way.
Full outfit details here
A-line dress.
A-line dresses are flattering on most people and very comfortable. Choose a darker and deeper color dress and pair it with simple accessories and you are party ready.
Full outfit details here.
A little black dress.
Well because you cannot go wrong with a little black dress; elevate it with some lace details and you are good to go.
Full outfit details here.
What do you guys think?

November Beauty Favorites

Friday, November 10, 2017

If you have been reading Letters to LALA Land you know that when it comes to hair and make up, I keep it fairly basic. However, once in a while, I try a product and it changes everything. These Kenra hair products did that.
My hair is straight and does not hold any kind of curl, regardless of what I do. Even my hairdresser fights to get my hair to stay curly. I curled my hair and set it with Kenra Air Grip Spray and finished it Kenra High Grip Spray 20 and my curls stayed all night. I now use this for everyday style whether it's a straight style or beach waves. 
The Whip Grip Mousse 9 was the only product that helped me keep my some volume in my hair for longer than like 2 hours. I love that is super easy to use, lightweight and smells good. The moose is not sticky and doesn't make my hair feel greasy. I use it on damp hair when blow-drying my hair.
Have you tried these Kenra Professional Products?

Ultimate Gift Guide for Her and Him

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Yes, it's only November but Christmas will be here before you know it, so today we are sharing our Ultimate Christmas Gift Guide. Few items to get you through this holiday shopping season because we want to make your life easier. You'll thank us later.

Make up - Beauty products are something we all love; regardless if you know how to apply make up properly or not, there is something about a great palette or product that we all get excited about. We recommend Tarte Limited-Edition Treasure Box Collector's Set for her $78 and Jack Black It's All About Him Set $54
Fragrances Sampler - Perfumes and colognes are very personal so it can be hard to just pick up one for people on your list. A fragrance sampler is a great way to go, they get to test out 10 fragrances and redeem a certificate for a full bottle of their favorite scent. We recommend Fragrance Sampler & Certificate For Him and Fragrance Sampler & Certificate For Her $85
Fitbit - With Christmas comes New Years, and with that comes New Year Resolutions where most of us want to be a little more healthier, a little more fit so why not get a gift that will help encourage them reach that goal. It tracks our activities, sleep and the interactive app lets you track your food and water intake. We recommend Fitbit Iconic $299 or  Fitbit Flex 2 $59.
Watch - Watches are one of those gifts that are perfect for birthdays, graduations, and Christmas. A watch can be a timeless piece. We recommend Cluse La Bohème Mesh Rose Gold/White for her $114 and Jord Frankie Series for him $118.
Monthly subscriptions - If you are looking for a gift that keeps on giving showing up each month after Christmas subscription boxes are perfect. You can try out new clothes, beauty products, wine or beer, and even books every month. Best part you can custom order them or let the recipient choose their selection.  We recommend Muse Monthly a books subscription; Wine Collective for well, wine subscription; Craft Beer for a monthly beer delivery; Glossybox for a beauty subscription.
Leather Jacket - Regardless of personal style, age etc everyone can rock a leather jacket. This is 100% an investment so do research. We recommend Bano eeMee lather jackets Dryden or Florence for her $480+ and AKL X Bano eeMee for him $678
(Blanket) Scarf - one of my favorite gifts was an oversized scarf. Its super soft, comfortable, great year round, and you can style it with pretty much any outfit. We recommend Aritiza scarves in birch/light grey or vert/aqua. $85
Mittens - What better way than to keep  we your loved ones warm and stylish than with a great pair of  mittens. We recommend Aritzia TNA Eger mitten or Hudson's bay CANADIAN OLYMPIC TEAM COLLECTION Adult Red Mittens $15+
Activities - A lot of the time, the best gift is a gift of time; time you get to spend with people in your life. Taking a class together, going snowboarding, going on vacations... you get the idea. These are some of the best gifts, and memories one can get. You can look up most of these in your local area but here are few suggestions to get you started. We recommend a cooking class at Sorrentinos; A Photography Class; Ski and Snowboarding passes; Pottery Classes or Paint Night; Yoga or Rock Climbing Classes; Photography Sessions; Hockey Game; Night at the Local Theater.
DIY Gifts - Sometimes making a gift from the heart goes a long way. Home made gifts like a box of cookies or truffles,  DIY projects like this Scent Diffuser or this Colorful Cactus Vases are what people remember and appreciate more.   
Shoes/Trainers - You cant go wrong with shoes... maybe that's me. You cant go wrong if you buys me shoes.  We recommend Adidas mi Superstar 80s for him and Adidas Stan Smith's for her. $110+
Candles - Candles not only smell great but can set the mood or improve a mood if you are having one of those days. Great for stocking stuffers or gift for co-workers and teaches. We recommend Vermeil Mini Tin Candle Set $54 and Boys Smells Candles $29+
Personalized Gifts - One of a kind gifts are hard to come by now days, but personalization can make any gift unique. If you know someone who travels a lot, personalized travel tags are a perfect gift. We recommend Etsy personalized travel tags $20 and personalized camera leather strap $66+.

Gifts that give back - If you are a person who doesn't buy / exchange gifts there is always a need and opportunity to buy gift that gift back. There are lot of agencies that you can donate through, I have used Unicef survival gifts to make a difference in someone else's life. You can check out the list of items available for gifting via Unicef.  
Spa days, massage certificates, cleaning service, jewelry and gift certificates are always a good way to go if you are stuck and cant come up with anything. Making a donation in someone's name to a charity that is important to them is a great gift too.
Few gift guides from previous years are available here.
I would love to hear what you are getting your loved ones this year? Even more, what are you hoping to get this year?


OOTD - Plaid Skirt

Monday, November 6, 2017

Do you ever wear things that make you think of holidays? This plaid skirt is one of those pieces for me. It reminds me of Christmas and the holiday season. I love the a-line shape and for some reason feels festive. Plaid can easily be dressed up or dressed down. I have previously worn it with a shirt tucked, this time I paired it with a sweater for the first holiday party of the year.  

 skirt: Simons
sweater: Simons
boots: Joe Fresh

Ghana : Living Life in Colour

Friday, November 3, 2017

 A collection of bright colors and happiness that is Ghana. Few photos from my trip to Ghana.

5 Reason Why You Should Volunteer Internationally

Thursday, November 2, 2017

One of my goals, for as long as I can remember, was to do things that would make a difference; regardless of how big or small, I wanted to do something to help. This got me started donating and volunteering. In September I got an opportunity to volunteer international. Volunteering abroad is the insightful, real-world experiences that opens your eyes and heart and you forver look at things differently.  International development gives you a hands-on experience, teaches you many thing and makes your grow more than I can put into words. 
You get to make a real difference.
One of our primary missions in northern Ghana has been to promote gender equity and help the cooperatives like credit unions grow their communities. Alleviating poverty can't be done alone. Gender Equity cannot be achieved over night. We need to work cooperatively to solve issues this sophisticated. Credit Unions are one version of the Cooperative movement amongst many other iterations of the same foundational philosophy that include farm coops, grocery coops, distribution coops, fuel coops, and so on and so forth. By coming together at every level we can tackle this collaboratively – and by starting the conversation, we are helping move the scale, in the right direction.

You learn so much.
CCA Coaching program sends field experts generalists to help credit unions to grow and support cooperative movement. Us, being the experts did our best to share as much as we knew but getting this opportunity has taught me more I thought possible. You learn about yourself, about culture and grow your values.  While volunteering in Ghana all of our meetings have started with either a Christian or a Muslim prayer and ended with whichever type was yet to be prayed. From the moment I realized this is just how they do things, it hit me "OMG we all have so much we can learn here".

You get a new perspective.
You gain so much more than you give any time you volunteer. Volunteering can teach you things about the world that you didn’t even know are even a possibility.  You discover things that makes you rethink the way you look at most things. For example, after this trip to Ghana, I look at my first world problems as not problems at all… Like I am so sorry your A/C-ed office is too darn hot, credit unions and members I just met have to have their meetings under a mango tree at 32C degree heat and you don’t hear them complaining.

Grow your resume.
Most employers want workers who have workplace experience, but if you don't, volunteer experience is the next best thing. Volunteering gives you a chance to build on skills you already have and learn new ones.

Improved Self-Esteem and Self-Confidence.
Being confident is something I struggle with all the time. My self esteem is fairly low but after having this opportunity to volunteer I came back liking myself a little more. There is something about volunteering, especially in a completely different part of the world, that can help you feel active, useful and productive.Volunteering is a win-win situation.  You get to help others, you get an opportunity to boost your career but also your own well-being.
Have you guys volunteer internationally?