Sunday, February 28, 2016

Rocco Report: Twinning with My Little Man- And Those Oh So Awesome Parenting Fails

A piece of advice for all you bloggers/writers out there: It's probably not a good idea to plan your writing after going to a 'Meatopia' event and gorging on an inhumane amount of meat. By the time I got home and opened the computer, I literally fell asleep mid-typing. So here I am, winding down after celebrating Maya's 4th birthday party, and determined to get this blog post up while I watch the Oscars! It's gonna happen. 

This is such a very special post because Rocco and I got to wear some really fashionable swimwear, courtesy of Petit Limoi, a fun-loving children's line that exudes spontaneity, uniqueness, and a flavor for adventure ( And did I mention that they lend themselves to some really cool 'twinning' opportunities?! Usually I'm not a fan of matching with spouses or with kids, but after seeing the Petit Limoi's suits, I'm a new convert! I The prints are mature but still fresh in color, and I definitely don't mind coordinating after seeing their cute styles! 

Take a look for yourself with these gorgeous pictures from photographer, Jenise Subervi (, who I had the pleasure of meeting during one of my on-air segments. Her son made the yummiest model during a Halloween segment I hosted! Jenise specializes in family, and lifestyle portraits and she did such a wonderful job capturing such candid moments of Rocco and I at Matheson Hammock. 

Can you spy the most chicest towel?! I am currently obsessed with this round towel from Vagabond Beach (, the perfect accessory for the free spirit in all of us! Inspiration for these one-of-a-kind towels comes from all over the world, specifically from the beauty of nature and the wonders of travel. And 10% of every purchase, goes to a charity whose mission is to support good causes that are all for the betterment of the human race. This towel has become my go-to accessory when I head to the beach. It's great if you have kids because it's big and has ample space for toys and laying out without feeling crowded.  

I love the coral and grey print on the swimsuits and especially love that this bikini gives my lady friends an extra boost! Rocco's shorts have a cozy fit and a comfortable elastic that grows with baby. Doesn't he look dapper?! The suits also come in different shades of blue (sweetly called the Raspberry and the Coconut). We are wearing the 'pomegranate' model and it's delightful! Daddies can also get into the fun and match with their little girls or little boys. Little girls have the option of donning a two piece or a one piece- both adorable! And with summer just around the corner, it's time to stock up on this season's trends! The suits are available on the brand's site. 

It's been a little bit since I've done a Rocco Report and I'm so excited to bring this one to the table. We're talking Parenting Fails. We're all perfect parents until we actually become parents. We all say, "Oh, I'll never let my kid watch 10 hours of TV.." or "My kids will never eat Happy Meals," or "I'll never feed my kid sugar." And then- Bam! Your kid knows every episode of Disney Jr, and will watch for 10 hours while they say feast on their happy meals and M&Ms. As for you, you survived another day and had to eat your words! 

And you know we all have those 'OMG' moments- those epic parenting fails that smack us back into that humble reality and remind us that parents aren't really that perfect to begin with. Your kid pulls an epic tantrum at a store and all you want to do is leave him there, or they made inappropriate comments to their teacher that made you want to enter the Witness Protection Program. We make mistakes. We fail- whether big or small. And at the end of it all, we laugh and we cry and realize that parenting is hard work. 

I got a good 'Parenting Fail' to share, one that I can laugh about now. It's a doozy. I had just moved back to Miami from New York, I was maybe here three weeks, and I was new to this whole driving thing again. We had gotten one of these techy cars that locks on its on when the doors closed and that started with a touch of a button. Basically I was overwhelmed with all these advances and still trying to figure out the car. So one afternoon, I take Maya with me to a vet appointment, I'm heading back into the car, and it's an overcast day, and I'm trying to get everyone in the car. Maya is still not a fan of the car seat at this point so to distract her and keep her quiet, I give her my keys. Big mistake-basically a rookie mistake. I had put my purse and my phone in the front seat and only realized this when I shut the door. And then I heard it- click. The car did one of its annoying techy things and locked all the doors. WTF. Here I am, no phone, no keys, no purse, and a one and a half year old locked inside. Ok, stay calm, deep breaths. All I have to do, is show that nothing is wrong and teach my kid how to double-click the unlock button. Here I am, in the middle of a parking lot at 10 in the morning, screaming through the window with an exaggerated smile, "Maya, can you press the button for mommy please?" She would giggle and then keep clicking the locked button. This was going nowhere fast. I started to internally panic. I needed to get this kid out. I'm just frantically looking around for anyone so I could use their phone. After what felt like hours, but was probably five minutes, I see one of the nurses coming out of the office and I blurt out, "Can I borrow your phone? I accidentally locked my baby in the car!" I called 911 and they were sending help. The worst part was waiting. 

At this point, a small crowd had gathered around my car. Maya was unfazed because I just kept smiling and making silly faces. The keys were on the car floor and my heart was coming out of my chest. Where was the police?! I called 911 to follow up. The minutes dragged. The seconds felt like days. I contemplated breaking the window, only we didn't have anything to break the window with. Then a few seconds later, a firetruck rolls up, sirens blaring, and two police cards trailing it. A firetruck?! My parenting star just dimmed. What kind of parent would leave their kid in the car?! I started to beat myself up. The firemen and the policemen asked me how it happened, and I was honest. I told them, I wasn't used to driving these fancy James Bond type cars that start by themselves or lock by themselves, I gave my kid the keys to play with, which by then I had realized how utterly stupid that was, and here I was! The cop's response, "What are you, from NY or something, you don't drive?" I yelled, "Yes! Exactly! I just moved from the city and I've only been driving for like two weeks." Turns out, the cop was originally from the Bronx and a sweetheart. He tried to cheer me up, but also told me that giving keys to a kid is never a good idea. I think he felt sorry for me. Ha! And thanks to the wonderful firemen, they were able to get into my car, and get Maya out without having to break a window. Seeing all these strange faces got her a little upset, but once she was in my arms, she was back to her regular self. As for me, I read the car's manual and changed all the settings. No more locked doors for this family! 

And now, on to my favorite part! Fellow parents share some of their parenting fails! Let's join together and laugh at our parenting awesomeness or lack thereof. 

AileenMy toddler is terrified of the dark because he suffers from nightmares so I borrow a book from his teacher about a little critter who dreams that he drinks a potion and grows fangs and wings. Little critter then goes off to do crazy things like getting a pet gorilla. Story ends by him realizing that it was all just a dream and that dreams are not real. He had actually been safely sleeping in his mom's arms. My poor baby misses the point of the story and now every night spends 20 minutes asking if he will turn into something while he sleeps, if he will wake up to a tiger in his room, etc. Bedtime got worse and real quick.

Jennifer: Giving my kid gum on the way to school because she forgot to brush her teeth and then her getting to school and telling the teacher she didn't have to brush her teeth because her mom would just give her gum because she's always in a hurry.

Kris: My husband curses- a lot. Especially when he drives. And he listens to a lot of explicit rap music. Our toddler is always in the car with him. Sometimes he forgets not to curse, so when she's in the car and he honks the horn, she'll blurt out, "Fucking bitch!" It's mortifying.

Victoria: We lost our three year old in Lincoln Road and we about had a heart attack. It's true what they say, you can't take your eyes of your kids not even for a second. The kids were playing next to us while we were eating and the next thing we know, the two kids were nowhere to be found. We were like crazy people screaming their name and looking for them. It was a few minutes that felt like eternity. The police helped us and they were so efficient. They found them both on one of the side streets riding their scooters. I cried for 30 minutes compulsively after we found them. My little one started crying when he saw me. That was my big parenting fail.

Mayte: I threw my toddler out of the house when she was three years old. I literally packed her a bag and put her outside and closed the door. Not sure if that was a good idea, but I did it.

Melissa: I went to drop off my daughter at school, and had my little boy with me. I got in my car and drove off, and my daughter's teacher came running after me and said, "are you missing something?" Sad part is I really had to think about it.

Monica: My oldest son kept answering back and I had just about enough. I stopped the car in Viscaya and told him to get off with his backpack and walk home. His sister was freaking out and crying in the backseat so I let him back in.

Rebecca- I know that I'm not the only parent to have done this, but my kid was running her mouth and being disrespectful so I got a bar of soap and literally washed her mouth with soap. #assholeparent

Lisa- The joys of vacation, lots of family time together and the opportunity for all ….. to co-sleep once again.  What damage can a week of some fun in the sun do? Let’s just say four months later, we are still sleeping together after we had made great progress prior to going on vacation.  Every night we make the “back to his own bed promise,” and every morning we all wake up together.  On the occasion we have put our little bed hog back in his bed, but who can resist that 3 a.m. cry for Mama?  Depending on the day of the week, I kick myself for being back in this predicament or just tell myself we are still on vacation.

Jessie: My daughter had a bag of Nerds. A huge bag. I mean, at least five pounds of Nerds in a bag and she wanted to put water in it so they can swim like fish. After 1000 times of telling her no, she didn't listen so I grabbed the bag and tossed out the bag on the palmetto during 5pm traffic. Crazy, but I had had enough. 

On Us: 

Suits: Petit Limoi
Towel: Vagabond Beach

In Style, 

Rocco's Mom

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Miami Style Map: The AC Hotel Miami Beach- SOBEWFF's Best Kept Secret

The South Beach Wine and Food Festival has descended upon South Florida, which means, foodies everywhere are ready to chomp down on some delicious cuisine and refreshing drinks from some of the most renowned chefs in the nation. The only downside? Scoring a ticket can often prove unsuccessful (unless you are willing to dish the big bucks) and that bad beach traffic and nonexistent parking is enough for any festival goer to lose their appetite. Fret not, my fellow food lovers! I have a stylish and yummy alternative that is quite savory and chic, without the hassle of reservations and scalped tickets. And the best part? It's located right in Mid-Beach- in the center of all the SOBEWFF action. 

A few days ago, I was invited to experience the European-inspired AC Hotel Miami Beach (, a boutique hotel offering top notch amenities in a more intimate and sophisticated setting in the heart of Miami Beach. When I walked into the sleek lobby of the hotel, with its muted grey and white palette, I immediately felt a cool-like energy that was both vibrant and relaxing. One of my favorite spaces within the hotel, was the laid back yet sultry lounge space available to both guests and locals. It's the perfect spot for a pre-game cocktail before heading off to your next glamorous adventure! 

Have a SOBEWFF event but want a grab a drink with friends beforehand? Not a problem. The AC Lounge has you covered. No reservations or tickets required! In fact, anyone who visits the AC Lounge during the festival and checks in and/or posts a picture tagging the property (with the handles @AChotelmiamibeach and #achotelmiamibeach,) on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter is eligible to win a $50 bar tab. 

I was very excited to sample the lounge's tapas drink and appetizer menu on my visit and I'm excited to share with you some of my most memorable tastes! First up, this filling Antipasto salad with prosciutto, salami, mozzarella, and roasted vegetables-  which was a home run in the salad department. Conjuring both the spicy and rich of a starter salad, this was the ideal starter to kick off the rest of the dishes. It was paired with a gin and tonic- which unfortunately, was a little too strong for my taste- but hey, it could easily be someone else's bag.

Let's introduce the second presentation with this fun newsflash: drinks at the AC Lounge are affordable- yes, you heard me- affordable, which is pretty much a myth in Miami Beach. Cocktails range anywhere from $9-$11. Not a bad way to start your night! Taking my first bite into the Tomato Braised Eggplant and Ricotta Toast was absolutely heavenly. The addition of the parmesan gave a nice kick to the bite's finish. If you're big on bourbon, then you'll love the  Biscayne Boulevardier, which is made with Cyrus Noble Bourbon, Fruitlab Hibiscus Liqueur, and Aperol. It'll give your body a surprising jolt! 

If you're coming a with a group of friends, set up shop at one of the lounge's tufted spaces. They're comfortable and great for flowing conversation! If you rather a more private and 'up-close-and-personal' vibe, head to the streamlined mirrored bar and get lost amidst the allure of bar dining and decadent drums. 

I think I speak for most foodies when I say, bring on the dessert! AC Lounge won me over with their delicious goat cheese and honey cheesecake. The glaze was mouthwatering combined with the creaminess of the cheesecake. It was proportionately sized so I didn't feel engorged or like a beached whale after consuming such wonderfully rich and appetizing dishes! This particular dessert dish was paired with a berry-anise liqueur from Spain- tangy and evenly sweet when enjoyed with the goat cheese. 

You won this girl over! 

I have to give a special mention to this preferred cocktail because it was actually one of my favorites. It's called The Flagler- made with Titos Vodka, Macchu Pisco, Simple Syrup, Key Lime, and Amargo Vallet Angostura. I'm usually not a vodka drinker, but this libation was off the charts refreshing and tasty. 

Coming by the AC Lounge felt like I was getting the full SOBEWFF experience within my own hidden gem! If you need a place to escape the beach madness, come to the AC Hotel. If you're a guest of the hotel, grab a drink and head to the rooftop, which offers the most stunning views of the ocean and the picturesque Miami Beach street scape. 

We finished off our day with a glass of bubbly, specifically, the Stiltsville - an effervescent delight made from Cocchi Americano, Sparkling Wine, St. George Absinthe, and lemon Juice. Pair it with some scrumptious and crunchy macaroons, and you've got yourself a winning combo! 

Now that I've consumed a tapas meal fit for a king, I'm ready to spread the good word about the AC Hotel Miami Beach. If these pictures taken by the talented and creative Chris Carter of Ra-Haus Fotografie ( haven't convinced you yet, then you need to check out the lounge for yourself! Be a trendsetter, or a food setter, and start the night right at the AC Lounge. Did I mention how affordable your tab would be?! You'll find me there Saturday evening with some champagne in my hand! 

On Me: 

Dress- Erin Fetherston for Rent The Runway
Hat- Goorin Bros Lincoln Road 
Sunnies- Forever 21
Heels- Christian Siriano for Payless Shoes 

In Style, 


Friday, February 19, 2016

Miami Style Map: Pinks and Blues on Espanola Way

Squeezers! I'm back from my whirlwind adventures in La Gran Manzana and had the most wonderful time covering fashion shows, eating my way through Manhattan, and catching up with friends. It didn't even matter that I was frozen most of the time. My five day 'momcation' was everything I wanted-and needed- to recharge my batteries. Now I'm back and excited to post this fun Alkas Couture (@alkascouture) denim little number for you guys! It's my take on a 'flirty señorita' exploring the charming streets of Española Way in Miami Beach.

I was witness to some pretty amazing photo magic a couple of weeks ago, when I had the pleasure of shooting with mega-talented lensmen, Gabe Sanchez of Gabe Media ( Gabe is swift, precise, and has a meticulous eye for capturing minuscule details and blasting their beauty on a magnified landscape, making each image look like fashion postcard. I was struck with how decisive he was with his shots. To his subjects, his direction may come across as rushed or fast-paced, but in reality, you are witnessing the technique of a skilled and blindfolded artist. 

These photos speak for themselves! 

When Gabe first suggested Española Way, I have to admit, I was hesitant. The first thing that came to mind was, 'seems like a really touristy place,' even though the architecture is pretty unique. Leave it to Gabe though, to find this beautiful pink and blue Spanish-styled structure along the streets that was basically meant for this dress! The cotton candy hues-from the walls to the patterned tiles- complimented the dusty blue coloring of the ruffled denim dress. We're seeing a ton of ruffles for spring and coincidentally, those ruffles will be transitioning to next fall as well! They were all over the runway! I love the hint of femininity and youthfulness that ruffles add to a look because it gives off an energetic and fresh vibe when worn. 

And as you can see, one of my favorite accessories made a special appearance- Rocco Buccio! Or as I like to call him, Mommy's Achilles Heel! The moment this kid bats those long, gorgeous lashes at me, I'm done. When I was pregnant with him, I had so many moms tell me how 'boys belong to their mommas,' or 'he will have you wrapped around his finger,' and I thought, 'yeah right!' Well, I drank the baby boy kool-aid because I'm a sucker for anything he does. I love that by default, he comes along with me to anything and everything I do- from press tastings to blog shoots- and makes the occasional appearance in my posts, showing off his baby zoolander moves! 

I mean, who else can pull off this adorable Keith Haring look with a devilish smile?! 

I want to acknowledge two special collaborators for this look, starting with the killer makeup skills of MAC Pro Artist, Joshua Manuel Ribadeo, who was responsible for giving me this AH-MAZING face for my shoot (@joshuamribadeo). First off, Joshua is incredible. He's a whiz with a lip stain and makes it look oh-so-easy. He's funny, mellow, and there was no shortage of fun conversation with this Cuban-American artist! How could you not connect with someone who found his makeup calling after seeing his first drag show and watching firsthand how a drag queen transformed into a stage siren?! He was hooked. 

The focus of this look were the lips, and for that, Joshua went bold with Heroine Lipstick and MAC's ( new Retro Matte Liquid Color in Recollection to seal it, and the result was an eye-catching purple with a dynamite effect! What I love about my purple lips is that they are such a vibrant, and beautiful reminder of my mom. If you ask anybody about my mom, one of the things they'll always mention is her bright lips. It was her signature look. If you are talking about Teresita in the 80s, it was all about the purple lips; which, I got to wear every Halloween no matter the costume and I remember being so giddy about twinning with my mom . If the Teresita of the 90s was more your speed, then we're talking Barbie pink lips all the way. The purple ones were gangster! And its my color of the moment. 

My second collaborator is a fellow visionary and mother, who also happens to create timeless and delicate pieces for her namesake jewelry line, Jacqueline Pinto Jacqueline is part of the design and creation process from start to finish, even selecting the stones herself and making sure each piece is curated  and created with the utmost sophisticated elegance that is associated with her brand. She only uses 18k gold with elements of pearls, gemstones, and diamonds. 

Jacqueline is attentive and she puts so much attention and love into creating the perfect piece and that's something that really resonated with me when we collaborated on this simple yet stunning cobalt colored necklace from her 'JP Cabochon Collection.' It's the epitome of understated beauty and I'm so honored that she chose me to help represent the embodiment of the 'JP Woman.' I wear my necklace everyday and often get compliments on the piece.

I can't wait to hear what you guys think of this look and post! I call this post my 'trilogy' post, because I was able to connect with three very talented individuals who share one common thread- a passion for their art and bringing that art to life through dedication, practice, and love. And that my friends, is where the road to happiness begins.

On Me:

Dress- Alkas Couture
Shoes- Steve Madden
Necklace- Jacqueline Pinto

On Rocco:
Jumper- Keith Haring for Gap
Shoes- Sweet and Swag

Monday, February 8, 2016

Miami Style Map: Moods and 'Momcations'

Squeezers! I'm back with a brand new post, featuring the mad photographic 'genuisness' (yes, I totally just invented that word) of the one, the only, Elizabeth from Ra-Haus Fotografie See, Liz and I have been busy popping out babies and getting them on sleep schedules so we haven't been able to shoot for some time. But alas, the baby gods smiled upon us and we rolled up to our location with our tricked out strollers and arsenal of baby toys, ready to shoot the sh^%t of this faux leather look from Forever 21. It's giving off all sorts of moods, and I love it! It's what we do best. 

In a few days, I'm headed off to New York to cover fashion week and I can't even begin to explain how freaking excited I am. Whenever I get the opportunity to do what I love, a part of me comes alive and I'm reborn in a new light. I absolutely love what I do and I no longer take those opportunities and experiences for granted. That excitement, though, comes paired with a mountain of anxiety and 'what ifs' that plague me during the days that lead up to my trip. Call it mom guilt. It's a bitch. It isn't until I'm in the trenches of work, doing my red carpet interviews and running after designers backstage, that I finally ease up and zen out in my happy place. 

I call this my 'momcation'- where I take some time away to detach, to regroup, and recharge my batteries without having to worry about school drop offs and pickups, laundry, nighttime feedings, or walking dogs.  Basically it gives me sanity. And I think all moms need and deserve a 'momcation'- whether it's a few hours, a full day, or a couple of days. We moms need a little break to take care of ourselves and hit the refresh button. The last time I had a 'momcation,' was in June when I went to New York for my sister-in-law's bridal shower. I was six months pregnant, and though I wasn't technically alone (hello, Rocco), it was nice to get away for a few days and reconnect with the people I love in the city I love. 

Since becoming a momma of two this past September, I'm double exhausted, double sleep deprived, and have very little recollection of what 'alone time' really means. That must be a foreign language! However, my happiness has quadrupled a million times over now with Maya and Rocco, and I'm oozing love and gratitude in every way possible. And thankfully, Coco and I work tremendously hard at creating some sort of imperfect balance to help each other out. It's tough; but, we do it and it's so worth it. Who needs sleep anyway, right?! 

With that being said, I got one foot on that plane. But just ask me how I'm feeling a few days before I head out. I'm an anxious mess. I hate leaving my babies. It kills me inside. There's definitely tears (mostly on my end), suffocating hugs, and those inescapable 'maybe I shouldn't go' conversations that always end with my husband bringing me back to reality. I've made daily schedules for Coco, I've put together some outfits for the kids (I've learned to let go of this one, somewhat), set up playdates and Gymboree classes, and touched base with babysitters, grandparents, and friends. A mom's work is never done; not even when I'm 1500 miles away. Expect texts, FaceTime, emails, and random phone calls, because that's just what I do. I'm never 100% detached and I'm okay with that. 

I'm almost overwhelmed with how much time I'm going to have to myself. I don't even know where to begin. Do I read magazines? Do I catch up on old shows? Do I write the forgotten 'thank you' cards from Rocco's baptism or update his baby book? My head is spinning from all the mundane possibilities of what I'm free to do. Here's the thing when you have kids- when you do get those odd moments of 'free time,' whether it's five minutes or five hours, you run with it and make sh$t happen. I'm not saying save the world, I'm talking about having a cup of coffee without interruption, sleep a full 6-8 hours, or sit on the toilet scrolling through your Instagram without anybody bothering you. Do whatever makes you happy with that treasured 'mommy's time out,' because those are few and far between. 

But you know what the best part of going away is? Missing the heck out of my husband and kids and getting to come home after being away. I'm already looking forward to  sleeping like sardines in our bed because there is no better feeling than being with my babies! So let's get this momcation started and leave the guilt baggage at the door! 

We're moving on from 'momcations' to moods, and this all-black-all-faux-leather ensemble is giving off vibes right now. It is easy to pull off and easy to wear. And it all lies in the mood! I channeled my inner 'dark and stormy' with deep vampy lips and tousled tresses. I love the combination of the leather top and the shorts. As a matter of fact, I'm packing a variation of this look for NYFW. I'm trading in the shorts for faux leather joggers! 

Normally, I would slap on a pair of booties with this look but I wanted to change it up a bit- step outside my comfort zone.  I'm showing you how you can dress up this look with a sexy pair of animal-print heels and these Chiffino heels are one of my favorites! I added a pair of gold statement earrings from NY jewelry, Marshellys (, because anything else wouldn't make sense with this look. The earrings are modern and sleek but also quite simple. 

Remember, there's a hot mom inside all of us- so bring her out to play- maybe on your next 'momcation!'

On Me: 

faux leather top- Forever 21
faux leather shorts- Forever 21
Heels- Chiffino
Earrings- Marshellys

In Style,