boutique mexico

What’s in my beach bag

pictured from left: pink beach bag / metallic espadrilles / book “The Constant Princess” / portable phone charger / sunglasses / striped bikini / body butter / sunscreen lip balm / Neutrogena sun block / sun hat (old, also love this hat under $20)

Beach season is here! Can I get a “heck yeah!” As my kids get older, I can finally get excited about beach season again. I no longer need to lug around a truckload of baby gear, diapers, and more. Now that my kids are all school-age, with one being a teen, they are self-sufficient at the beach. They even carry their own gear! Pinch me, I must be dreaming!

Since I am back in the “traveling light” camp, I can go to the beach with my bare essentials. If you are transitioning from little kids with lots of gear, to the one bag, lightweight stage, then this might help you decide what to pack in your Mom beach bag too. These are my essentials for a beach day with my kids; who carry their own gear. Yes!

Beach tote: A fabulous beach tote is essential to traveling light. The tote needs to be large enough to carry everything, without being overly bulky. I love this one from Boutique Mexico. It is the perfect size.

Espadrilles: If you have tried wearing shoes on the beach before, then you know shoes have no place on the beach; and don’t even think about wearing flip-flops, they flip off! The only shoes which work on the sand are espadrilles. I always have a flat pair to wear on the beach. You can protect your feet from hot sand, or trash left behind by annoying people, with a good pair of espadrilles. They are also easy to shake out after your beach day is done.

A good book: Older kids can entertain themselves. Therefore, you can relax! A good book is a great way to relax while your kids build a sand castle. If you are reading a book with your kids at the beach, just make sure you can still see your kids. The last thing you want is for one of  them to decide the ocean looks like a swimming pool and start running out of your sight. Always be ready to intervene.

Portable phone charger: The beach offers a lot of photo ops, and if your kids are like my kids, they like to take videos of their sand castles, and of each other. Always carry a back-up battery for your phone.

Striped swimwear: Striped swimsuits are hotter then hot this season. You want to be the most fashionable mom on the beach right? Then it is settled! You must wear a striped suit! I’m living in this bikini for summer, but here are a few more striped swimsuit options you might love:

Body butter: The sun, the salt sea, and chlorine from the pool; these are all causes of dry, summer skin. I combat summer skin with LaVanila Body Butter. It works like a charm! See my full review here.

Sunscreen lip balm: Your lips need sunscreen too. I can’t live without this one.

Neutrogena sunscreen: This is a fabulous, non-greasy sunscreen. I love it for both myself and my kids.

Sunglasses: No beach trip is complete without a fabulous pair of sunglasses which not only protect your eyes from harsh rays, they show the world that the beach is your runway. Twirl girl!

A fabulous sun hat: Your Giants cap is for baseball games, the beach is for dramatic sun hats! Wear something fabulous, you deserve it; especially since your daughter might try to bury your son in the sand again. Oh snap! Why not look fabulous while scolding your children? Twirl again!

I also bring a foldable beach blanket, which you can see in my recent Tahoe vacation post. Another option is to bring an umbrella and folding chair; although, those will not fit in your beach bag.

That’s it! That’s all your really need in addition to a small first aid kit, water, and snacks. What are some things you like to ensure are in your beach bag this summer?

Thanks for stopping by, and enjoy the beach!



Boutique Mexico Stella tote review

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Pictured: pink and orange tote c/o Boutique Mexico, this is the Stella tote in medium.

If you are wondering where the next big thing in fashion will come from, it will come from Mexico. Mexico is starting to gain recognition in the fashion industry through their hand-made brands, and couture designers. One of the hot brands from Mexico to watch, and shop from, is Boutique Mexico.

Boutique Mexico not only combines traditional Mexican craftsmanship with fashion, they enable artists to rise above poverty and help their communities achieve economic stability. Isn’t that amazing! You can read abut their entire story online here. Love!

The Stella tote by Boutique Mexico is hand-made by artisans in Oaxaca, Mexico. It is hand-woven with plastic, making it a great tote for all-around use. I love wearing mine as a handbag, as seen here, or as a beach tote. It can be worn for any occasion where a tote is needed! I love the addition of the hand-made tassels; they add a fashion-forward and fun element to the bag itself.

This spring, I have been carrying my denim jacket, a book, wallet, sunglasses, lipstick, iPhone, and keys around in my Stella tote. Even with all of these items I still have plenty of room inside the tote bag in case my kids want me to carry something for them. It is really roomy!

Tassels are a huge trend right now in fashion. The tassels on the Stella tote make it on-trend; plus they are so cute and fun! Love them! The tote comes in a variety of colors, but the orange and pink version is my favorite.

Boutique Mexico has amazing products in addition to handbags. They offer hand-made jewelry, accessories and more! Each product is made in a different village or town in Mexico. It really is a one-stop-shop for Mexican fashion and gifts. Love it!

The medium size tote is shown in this post; which is extremely roomy. There is also a large version which is great for travel, poolside, or the beach. In addition to the Stella tote, Boutique Mexico has a large selection of handbags to choose from, all of which are hand-made!

You can find the Boutique Mexico Stella tote online here, or visit the whole shop at

Pink ruffle sleeves on a cool spring day

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Wearing: Kendra Scott earrings / YSL lipstick / pink ruffle top c/o SheIn (under $20!!) / Chanel spring nail polish / watch c/o Welly Merck (use code BAF20 to save 20%) / rose gold ring / boyfriend jeans (similar here) / tote c/o Boutique Mexico /  suede slides c/o Donald J Pliner

One of the biggest trends this year is tiered ruffle sleeves. Ruffle sleeves seem to be everywhere for spring; despite the fact that they did not dominate the runways. This has turned into a trend which is well-loved by the street; unlike most street style trends, this is a flirty and feminine style trend. Love it!

I was thrilled to find this cute pink top with tiered ruffle sleeves for the spring season. Not only does it cost under $20, it is right on trend. The fabric is easy to to iron and stays wrinkle-free after ironing. I ironed this top, and then wore it  to run errands for about three hours before my daughter snapped these pictures; and it looks great! Love that!

Isn’t this tote bag cute?! There is a huge trend right now towards couture from Mexico. It is one of the hottest up-and-coming regions for hand-made fashion. This tote was hand-made in Talum, Mexico. I have a full review of this tote and the company coming up on the blog this Friday-so stay tuned!

If you are looking for a graduation gift, Mother’s Day gift, Father’s Day gift, or a gift for yourself, check out this Welly Merck watch. You can save 20% off your purchase with coupon code BAF20. My full review is online here.

Back to this tiered ruffle sleeve top, I have fallen in love with this spring trend. I know I will find myself wearing this top often this spring; and on cool summer days when the fog rolls in over the Santa Cruz Mountains. You can find this fun and flirty top for under $20 online here.

Outfit details:

Thanks for stopping by!