I got my eyelashes permed.

Long lashes are something I’ve always wanted. My eyelashes kind of stuck straight out. If you wanted to see my lashes at all, I needed to use a lash curler. About 10 months ago I began using Rodan and Fields Lash Serum and HOLY CRAP did they grow BUT they still stuck straight out. When I used mascara and curled them they looked wonderful but I really don’t *enjoy* wearing makeup. 

Earlier this year I met Tiffany and she changed my lash game FOREVER. I had began doing my podcast, Side Hustlers, where I sit down with people who follow a passion aside from their regular job. Tiffany emailed me when she heard about the podcast to let me know she not only had a side hustle but that it was now her regular job! Tiffany owns Sweet P Beauty in Renton, Washington. ((Listen to her episode of Side Hustlers here.))

 

Sweet P Beauty does everything from makeup to waxing and lash extensions! I had no idea what a Lash Lift was until Tiffany asked me if I wanted to come to Sweet P Beauty to try one! A Lash Lift is basically a perm for your eyelashes! It sounds crazy, because it is BUT in a good way! 

 No mascara. No makeup, at all.

No mascara. No makeup, at all.

I’ve had two so far this year and I’m obsessed. It lasts for almost three months! The lashes get lifted from the root to give your eyes a more open look. Under eye pads are applied to keep your bottom lashes and skin protected from the other products. You have to keep your eyes closed for 30 minutes which is a perfect for a nap!


During your nap, silicone rods are glued to your eyelids with a water soluble medical grade glue (for the record, this sounds scary but it’s not, I didn’t even know that’s what happened until after getting it done twice). That same glue is use to adhere the lashes to the silicone rod. A lifting solution is added to the base of your lashes and then removed. This is the perm part! It actually smells like a perm! Then a setting solution is added and removed and finally lash tint is added and removed. The tint makes a huge difference on my lashes, if you don’t want them tinted you don’t have to get it done. Once the products are are removed the silicone rod comes up and VOILA you look like a doe-eyed princess. Everyone asks if it hurts, it doesn't!

I’m obsessed with this treatment and you will be too. Tiffany told me guys get this done, especially before their weddings! It’s $85 and it lasts for a long time plus you’ll most likely save money on mascara!

 

 Tiffany is the owner of Sweet P Beauty and master of my eyelashes.

Tiffany is the owner of Sweet P Beauty and master of my eyelashes.

Side Hustlers Podcast with The RSVLTS!!

I kicked off my Side Hustlers podcast on iHeartRadio earlier this year and it's been so inspiring and exciting hearing everyone's story. Each person I've talked to is a complete badass, doing their regular job and following their passion on the side. There are also the badasses who have turned their side hustle into a full blown business like my friends John and Steve from The RSVLTS. I sat down with them in their cool loft-office on the top floor of an old warehouse in Hoboken, New Jersey where I learned the story of how The RSVLTS came into fruition and how they hustled over every single hurdle. I thought I knew everything about their company but I had no idea! You won't find a more creative, hard-working, duo than these two (other than Anthony and I).

Listen to Side Hustlers with The RSVLTS by clicking the photo below (there's a promo code for discounted RSVLTS gear in the episode!) ⬇️⬇️

 Steve, me, John. The RSVLTS. May 2018.

Steve, me, John. The RSVLTS. May 2018.

i hate cats.

         I guess the proper statement would be “I hated cats.” I didn’t understand why people had cats and if you had cats I seriously thought you were so weird. Growing up, none of my friends had cats. My neighbor had a cat that would sit in the window and stare at us and I thought it was so weird and mean. When I was a kid a cat gave birth to a bunch of kittens in a nook under my neighbor’s house. I wanted to make sure they were taken care of and brought to the proper shelter but I didn’t even ask my parents if we could keep one. We had a dog and all I knew was dogs. It’s safe to say I was ignorant when it came to cats. It wasn’t until my 20s that I pet my first cat (I’m not even kidding). My sister from another mister, Nancy, had three cats, who were okay, she rescued all of them from some crazy situations and I commend her for being a hero! However, they didn’t really like strangers too much and I hated how they hid every time I came over. My best friend Alex had a cat that was old, Morsel, who purred when I pet him and actually hung out with me like a dog but I’d be at her house for an entire weekend and I would see Morsel once, which is strange when you are used to growing up with dogs because they are always IN YOUR FACE.

         I maintained my “I hate cats” opinion until the end of August 2017. I work with Motley Zoo Animal Rescue here in Seattle – but they help rescue animals from all over. Every few weeks, Pate, who works at Motley Zoo, brings adoptable animals to our studio and we talk about them on air in hopes to help find their forever home. I met my first set of kittens in our studio in spring 2017 and they were so so cute. I fell in love. They made little noises, and they were so soft. But the thought of owning a CAT was completely out of line for me. I wanted a male dog named Ralph. I’ve even had the Instagram account @RalphWantstoPlay for a few years. I couldn’t adopt a dog because my work and travel schedule was insane. I was never home. I talked to Pate at Motley Zoo about one day fostering a dog, but I’d have to wait until I wasn’t traveling so often.

         In July of 2017 I was at a Mariners game when I saw Motley Zoo post on Instagram about being in desperate need of fosters because they were about to be inundated with kittens. I’m not sure why, but I felt compelled to help. I texted Pate immediately and told her I had 3.5 weeks of no traveling so I could foster a kitten but I’d have to give it to a different foster if it wasn’t adopted by the time I was traveling again. She said it would work but there asked me if I’d be okay fostering sister kittens because they were bonded and I said “Sure.” I had NO idea what I was getting into.

 July 25, 2017. The day Caroline and Max came to their forever home (before we know it would be their forever home!)

July 25, 2017. The day Caroline and Max came to their forever home (before we know it would be their forever home!)

         When I told my friends, family, and co-workers I’d be fostering kittens I received extremely polarizing responses. “Awww send me pics” and “Ew. Cats.” I had to remind the haters that they were kittens and I wouldn’t have them when they were cats because, I too, hated cats. On July 25, 2017 I met Caroline and Max, my new fosters. Motley Zoo gives all of the animals a pop culture name and these two were named after Caroline and Max from “Two Broke Girls” on CBS. I took them home, set up their litter and water and gave them a bath. I didn’t know the first thing about taking care of a cat, Pate told me everything I needed to know. I went to Mud Bay to get some pet supplies and that’s when I first heard the term that now defines me...“Foster Fail”. As I was buying some toys and supplies I picked up a giant feather and asked the people working there if it was a toy or decoration. They chuckled and said “Toy, cats love it. There’s a woman who comes in every week to buy new ones for her cats” and I thought to myself “that sounds crazy.” But I bought one for the kittens to play with. I talked to the woman at the register about my new fosters and she said “Oh, you’ll be a Foster Fail.” I asked her what that meant and she said “So many people foster, but they get attached and can’t give them up.” I said “Not me. I have no choice, I can’t keep them. I work all the time and I’m traveling four out of the next seven weekends” If I had a dollar for every time I said that exact sentence, it would have paid for their adoption fees and vet visits.

         I’d talk on air every single day about how the kittens were so cute, were four months old, and were sisters that had to be adopted together because they were found roaming the streets of Yakima, WA as kittens. I didn’t tell anyone that Caroline (the white one) was terrible at using the litter box and would fling her poop everywhere, oh and she had diarrhea. Or that Max (orange) liked to pee on the floor whenever her sister was eating out of the food bowl. (This was later fixed by giving them each their own bowl). They were driving me crazy and it was only a few days in. I didn’t know what to do…but they were so cute. They started to warm up to me, I’d nap and they’d sleep on my chest. It was so fun watching them learn and explore. Every time I posted a picture on Instagram letting people know they were adoptable the comments would be flooded with the word “foster fail”. I HATED it. I mean HATED it. “Don’t these people know ANYTHING about me? I have NO time in my life for animals. I’m busy. I’d have a dog by now if I had time for animals. Oh, and I HATE CATS.”

         After about two weeks and our first vet visit things started to calm down. Caroline stopped flinging her poop and stepping in it and Max was only peeing in the litter box. I let them roam around my apartment when I wasn’t home instead of being in the bathroom all day. At this point, they were sleeping in bed with me, I’d go to bed and they would hop in and sleep on my pillows above my head. It was too cute. When people would ask “why don’t you just adopt them” on Instagram I’d respond the same way as always, but I was even angrier. I wanted to keep them, but knew I couldn’t. There was no way. I’d be leaving them alone too often or I’d have to pay a stranger to come and feed them when I wasn’t home and I didn’t like that idea. I remember the first moment I wanted to keep them, or the moment I knew I’d be so sad giving them up. I was showering, my shower has a cloth curtain and then a clear curtain on the inside, I looked down to see that both of them had weaseled their way underneath the cloth curtain and were staring at me. I cracked up, it was the cutest. Now every time I shower Caroline gets under the cloth curtain like a maniac and jumps on the edge of the shower and watches the water droplets hit the clear curtain.

I couldn’t believe that people weren’t trying to adopt them. While there were a few people interested, they didn’t meet the criteria of adopting from Motley Zoo. My traveling started again on August 18th, so I made plans for Pate to pick up Caroline and Max from our studio. They were going to get spade on Saturday and I wasn’t going to be there for them afterwards. I cried almost everyday the week I had to give them up. I was so attached, but there was nothing I could do about it, they didn’t fit into my life. One morning I talked about them on air and mentioned how another Motley Zoo foster wrote me a nice message about being a foster parent. I read it on air and I BALLED. I had friends and coworkers reaching out to me telling me if I wanted to adopt them they’d love to help me take care of them when I wasn’t around. I couldn’t believe it, but still, it wouldn’t work. On Friday August 18th I brought the kittens to the studio so Pate could take them for the surgery and bring them to a new foster. It was awful. I felt so bad, they had no idea I was abandoning them that morning. I left for Chicago that day, and while I missed them, I didn’t feel the loneliness until I returned to home and they weren’t there. I cried for three days toying around the idea of adopting them and if it would work. Finally, I texted Pate from Motley Zoo and said “If no one adopts them by the time I’m back from vacation next week, I’ll adopt them.” And she said “okay, are you sure?” and I’m pretty sure I replied with “Okay, I’ll adopt them. Can they stay with their foster until I’m back from vacation?” And just like that I was the new mom of two cute and crazy kittens.

I took them back to their forever home on August 30, 2017 and I could not have been happier. Max is my tiny little girl who likes to make noises and sit on your face if you’re watching videos on your phone, and if you scratch her in the right spot she will plop onto the floor and roll around like a maniac. Caroline is my chubby purr box who is unbelievably deviant but cuddly at the same time and every single time I sit on my toilet seat she comes running into the bathroom and swirls around my legs until I pet her, I have named my toilet “the Caroline petting station”. I refer to them as “the girls” never “the cats” or “the kittens” maybe because I hate the word “cats” but I believe it’s because they are way more than “cats” to me. I don’t think I ever really felt alone at home but having them here makes it feel whole – I know it sounds super cheesy and may not make sense to everyone, but it’s the truth. I love them so much. And no, I don’t hate cats anymore but I firmly believe you have the ability to make your cats personable. I have squeezed these little boogers every day to make them used to being held and touched. If you hate cats I think you should get over yourself and try to foster a kitten, just like I did. Then report back to me. You’ll be just like the girl who was buying the feathers at the pet store for her cat every week…because I do it now too.

 

Special shout out to Brooke who told me the only thing missing from my website was Caroline + Max, thanks for the idea! Huge thank you to my co-workers Kimmie and Houston, and my neighbor, Ellie – they take turns watching the girls when I’m away and I’m forever grateful for them.

 

 

 

 

Side Hustlers Podcast: This Is Magazine

For my 30th birthday I not only launched this website but I launched my own podcast! I talk to people who are following their passion while working their regular 9-5 job...Side Hustlers. I believe we can all learn from people who do work outside of their regular jobs. It takes a lot of heart and a little crazy to dive into a side hustle and I'm excited to share these stories with you! You can find it on the free iHeartRadio app and iTunes. 

My Visit to Napa Valley

This past August I vacationed with my parents to Napa Valley. Instead of visiting me in Seattle again they wanted to try something new. My parents never want to try something new, so I jumped at the opportunity! Keep in mind, they’re Jersey Italians so nothing is better than New Jersey and they only eat Italian food…which is why my food recommendations will be only Italian places! It was tough planning something like Napa… hundreds of wineries do I visit? Where do I eat? Do I Uber? Do I rent a car? I’m not a Napa pro, but this was everything we did!

I flew into San Francisco and rented a car so we didn’t have to Uber the 1 hour+ ride from SFO to Napa. It also was convenient because you’re not always going to wineries and places you’ll want to visit aren’t close together. I booked a studio room for the three of us at Vino Bello resort through AirBnb. It’s someone’s timeshare and it was perfect. They offer a free shuttle to and from downtown Napa at night. There is a bowling alley, a bar, two pools ((one family friendly)) and their own wine-tasting room. There’s grape vines all over the resort. Siena Restaurant is on premises, we went there for breakfast every day and it was incredible, their buffet on weekends is killer!

 Romper from Forever 21

Romper from Forever 21

 

Wineries

Frog’s Leap Winery – My absolute favorite! Not only is the wine awesome ((I ordered two bottles)) but the grounds are gorgeous. I suggest doing the Signature Seated tasting. Seated outside on their patio, you'll look out into their beautiful garden where they grow everything from pumpkins to peppers! Lucy was our sommelier and she was so knowledgeable I now have a girl crush on her! Frog’s Leap is interesting because they follow the European style and do not irrigate their crops – whatever rain comes from the sky ((and whatever doesn’t)) is what waters their crops.

 

 Frogs Leap Winery Seated Signature Tasting with my parents!

Frogs Leap Winery Seated Signature Tasting with my parents!

 Frog's Leap Winery

Frog's Leap Winery

 

Cakebread Cellars- We did a standard red tasting at Cakebread Cellars and it was great! Nick was our sommelier and he was knowledgeable and fun. The premises are pretty but there isn’t much to see. I loved the wine!

 My mom at Cakebread Cellars

My mom at Cakebread Cellars

Tank Garage Winery - It’s an old gas station turned into a tasting room for Tank Garage Winery! The art on their bottles is unlike any other bottle of wine I have ever seen and their merch is pretty legit too. It’s a great stop for Instgram posts but I wasn’t a fan of their wine.

 Tank Garage Winery

Tank Garage Winery

 Nothing Gold Can Stay at Tank Garage Winery

Nothing Gold Can Stay at Tank Garage Winery

 Merch at Tank Garage Winery is the same as the labels on their bottles!

Merch at Tank Garage Winery is the same as the labels on their bottles!

 

Castello di Amorosa – The castle winery you will hear every single person talk about. Personally, I thnk it’s a tourist trap. It’s SUPER pretty and definitely cool to see – you are INSIDE a castle. The catch? The castle was built 10 years ago and it’s PACKED with people. We wanted to just do a tour of the castle after hearing bad reviews of the wine from Uber drivers but it’s a Napa law that wineries must sell wine-tastings in order to have people tour their premises ((at least that’s what we were told)). It cost us $30 per person for a wine tasting and self-tour of the castle. We only tried one glass of wine because we had already done a tasting that day - I wasn't a fan and neither was my mim. I think this stop is a waste of money – take a picture from the parking lot and move on.

 Castello di Amorosa

Castello di Amorosa

 Write here...

Write here...

Restaurants

Napa has amazing restaurants! Even though we only went to Italian I recommend ALL of them. I highly suggest making reservations ahead of time, you can always cancel if you come across something else!

Bistro Don Giovanni is located in Yontsville ((across from the outlets!)) The food and drinks were AMAZING. Like a lot of Napa restaurants, it’s got an open kitchen so the vibe is fun. There’s also an outdoor patio. I had the mushroom risotto and an Italian Greyhound cocktail!

Oenotri (Oh-E-No-Tree) is located in downtown Napa where they are a ton of restaurants and shops. DON’T get overwhelmed by the menu. We witnessed one table get up and leave after reading it and the couple who replaced them leaned over to ask us what we ordered because they were confused by the menu. They use a lot of fancy terms for regular food items. Our server did a great job at explaining and there’s also always Google. Their drink menu is on a mini iPad! They also have outdoor seating available.

Ristorante Allegria is also in downtown Napa it’s two floors and offers outdoor seating. This had a less modern feel than Bisro Don Giovanni and Oenotri. It felt like a classy Italian restaurant. Food and drinks were great for all of us! While we were there a bachelorette party walked in with a giant blow up penis…beware Napa is becoming a new bachelorette party destination!

We first visited Della Santina's on a trip to Sonoma for lunch. Their sandwiches during lunch were amazing so we went back for dinner the following night. The food was great but my least favorite…it could have also been because it was fourth night eating Italian food. If you want to dine in Sonoma, The Girl and the Fig gets GREAT reviews from everyone!

What to Do

There is much more to see than grapevines and much more to taste than wine! There are plenty of other things to do in the Napa area and nearby. Downtown Napa is cute! There are so many great shops – chocolate shops AND clothing shops. There are a ton of storefronts that offer wine tastings and you can try wine from different wineries which is pretty convenient.

The Oxbox Public Market is a must! Similar to Chelsea Market in NYC and Pike Place Market in Seattle, it’s got a variety of places to eat and small businesses to shop. The only time I ate meat on this trip was here ((I was kind of being a vegetarian at this moment)) and it was a steak sandwich. *** They also have an option where you pick a raw cut of meat from their refrigerator and they'll cook it however you want. Oxbox market has a ton of other places to eat things like Oysters, tacos, pizza, sushi and more!

Sonoma is also a great place to visit. Similar to downtown Napa it’s got shops and restaurants galore. An Uber driver recommended to get some wine and cheese at Sonoma Cheese Factory and sit in the park and eat it…we didn’t do it but it’s definitely a cool idea!

I attempted to find some Redwoods for us to visit but that was an epic fail. You can visit the Redwood National Reserve near the Golden Gate Bridge on your way back into San Francisco.

It was recommended by some friends to do a wine tasting bike tour and a kayak along the river, we didn’t get a chance to do this but it’s definitely worth checking out!

I suggest making your Napa stay about 3-4 nights and if you want a longer vacation spend some time in San Francisco. There is only so much wine you can taste – don’t pack your schedule with wine tastings, you’ll be miserable. If you plan on traveling to Napa let me know if you have any questions!!

xo

Carla Marie

 Castello di Amorosa

Castello di Amorosa