Gäbi Coffee & Bakery has to be one of the cutest, most well-thought out café in town. Nestled in a Chinatown lot, this spot boasts Asian- and French-inspired confections and pastries with tea service or coffee. The unique interior design also translates to their dinnerware and glassware. Once you step in, you’re transported to the dreamiest Korean-style coffee shop that you can only find in K-dramas.
Every corner has a surprise and the attention to detail is something I’ve never seen or experienced before, especially in a coffee shop. Books line all the walls and even under the bar at the front of the space. Vines and birdcage seats are spread around. Each seat and table is different from the rest. It’s like you’ve walked into a vintage garden but instead of English tea service, you’re served trendy Korean desserts.
Since it opened, Gäbi Coffee & Bakery has become a staple for Instagrammers, foodies, and just anyone who wants to have coffee or tea in a gorgeous, trendy space.
Where is the prettiest coffee shop you’ve ever visited?
How crazy is it that it’s now the end of September? Reminiscing back on “better” days when this set was shot two years ago by my friend Juju. But what does that even mean? Was it truly better before quarantine, before COVID, before all this madness with earthquakes, tropical storms, and forest fires? Was it really better back then?
I disagree. Let’s start with my personal experience. This year has definitely had its ups and downs, but it’s been pure bliss for me… I started the year off single and refreshed—a feeling I’ve truly never felt before because I’ve always been attached to someone else. I felt free and actually kept getting better and better partnerships and deals as an influencer. I was able to expand my network and community in ways I couldn’t before. And I’m still doing that. I’m running with the momentum the start of 2020 gave me.
Even today, I’m grateful. I’m grateful that I was one of the very few chosen to come back to work. Despite the amount of work that got dumped on me, I’m still happy. Even through quarantine, I was grateful. I loved having time to slow down and refocus on things I never had the chance to do. I loved having that time to myself to redecorate my apartment. I loved having that time to strengthen my relationships with friends. It was a blessing in disguise.
I got the chance to rediscover myself for almost three months. That’s a quarter of a year, friends. That’s a long time to figure things out. Because of that forced break, I was able to strategize and plan for my future—the steps I’m going to take to get to those dreams that keep me up at night. This year has been a blessing.
It may seem like times are incredibly hard right now—with the economy plummeting, industries and businesses failing (especially hospitality and entertainment in Vegas), COVID, BLM, earthquakes, protests, West Coast forest fires, the upcoming election… I think this is exactly what humanity needed. We were so focused on stupid bullshit that we forgot that matters needed to be addressed. So much is being brought to light because people are TIRED. And all of this is starting in 2020. I am here for it. I’m here for change. I’m here for the movement.
I love spring. It’s my favorite season. But it feels like spring didn’t even happen this year. I’m used to being poolside or brunching al fresco with my babes while getting drunk on mimosas. Instead, I’m stuck indoors basking in the sunlight streaming through my bedroom windows while under my fresh linens. Still not a bad alternative, but can we please go back to normal now?
I recently made a Tiktok about how much I missed going to the f*cking bar, and how much I just wanted to order margaritas with my friends. I miss being myself so much. I miss doing so much in one day and feeling productive and crushing my goals… But also, I’m grateful to be healthy, alive, and well. I’m grateful that my family and friends are healthy. I’m grateful for this beautiful life.
This outfit was shot in April 2018. I’ve changed so much since then. Looking at these photos of myself is like I’m looking at a different girl. I looked happy but, in reality, I was not. I was highly insecure and sought validation from all the wrong places. I didn’t even know who I truly was.
Fast forward to today, and that lil insecure girl has disappeared. And I’m so happy to glow and thrive. I realized that my mindset was everything. Once I changed my thoughts, my whole world changed.
I had a conversation with my best friend Johanna yesterday because I felt an overwhelming sense of dread. It finally hit me that I was currently in furlough from my full-time job and that this quarantine might last longer than I expected. All of Vegas is hurting. All of my friends are hurting. I am hurting.
Everyone is alone together. And a lot of people are living in fear right now. Even my family members don’t want to go to the grocery stores or see each other. It’s so unprecedented, unexpected and unpredictable. All of this is really hard, emotionally, mentally and financially. I felt helpless and useless. I felt like I wasn’t in control. And for someone like me who is always in control of my life, all of this is super uncomfortable.
Johanna told me that I’m feeling uncomfortable and uneasy in quarantine simply because I’m not being myself. I embody the busy working girl, the hustler. The “boss bitch” (in her words, but honestly I don’t feel like a boss bitch most days… just feel like I’m working too hard for my goals, but it makes me happy to work hard). Before shit hit the fan in Vegas, I had three to four events each week, photoshoots on the weekends or weeknights, friendly dates, my full time job, and work when I got home. I was BUSY.
And now, I’m not as busy. But I’m trying to occupy my time with community outreach projects, influencer partnerships, learning how to shoot self portraits, writing, cooking, working with local businesses to help them stay afloat, making TikToks, and rediscovering myself. I’m hoping that once everything returns to my version of normal, that I can learn to keep my balance of self-care and hard-working hustle.
Adjusting to this new normal where I don’t have full control over my life has really messed me up. I’m not going to sugarcoat this. This pandemic is making a lot of people uncomfortable. It’s displacing a lot of us. But I would rather deal with being stuck at home than being a frontliner or first responder. That’s so much harder. I have plenty of friends who work in healthcare and they’re struggling even more than those of us who are stuck at home. That’s why I felt so uncomfortable with not being able to do anything about any of this, with not being able to physically help my community. So I decided to do the most I can from my position at home.
If I come out of this quarantine without having accomplished anything, then that’s 45 to 60 days wasted. Yes, I’m sad that I’m not working full time, I’m not able to execute my travel plans, and I’m not seeing my friends… Everything has been pushed back. I’m in a physical stand-still but I’m not stuck. I keep reminding myself this every single day. I can continue working on myself and other projects that will benefit my future. I need to plan for longevity.
I’ve started interior design projects for my apartment and realizing that doing that in a rental space can be difficult. I’ve started buying more plants. I bought more decor for my living room, and I’m planning my gallery wall for the dining room. I’m getting peel and stick backsplashes to spruce up my kitchen and planning where I can place my cello and guitar that I’ll be renting soon. Quarantine might suck for everyone but we have to find the positive in the situation. We’re in this together. The whole city of Las Vegas is in this together. And we’ll come out of this #VegasStronger.
Spring is my favorite season. The flowers are blooming, there’s occasional rain, I don’t have to wear winter clothes anymore, AND IT’S NOT TOO HOT IN VEGAS. Literally perfect Vegas weather, aside from the seasonal allergies, of course.
But I’m kind of sad because this spring doesn’t feel like previous years’ spring season. I can’t just go out and bask in the sun. I can’t just lay by the pool and get in the hot tub to relax the constant tension in my shoulders… I can’t just have brunch with my best friends on the patio of our favorite spot. We have to stay home. But we have to do this quarantine to help the frontliners curb the number of COVID-19 cases. So in that sense, I’m okay with not having the mobility and freedom to do what I usually do when spring comes around every year. The more we stay inside, the quicker it is for us to get back to normal. But I’m not gonna lie, I’m getting used to this “new normal”.
Because we’re in such an unprecedented time, I’ve been feeling really emotional and introspective lately, which usually doesn’t happen. I’ve been on the hustle and grind for so long that I was just constantly chasing the next thing, the next goal, the next dream to achieve. I never took the time to look inside myself and reflect on all that I’ve done. I’ve never taken the time to just breathe and “smell the roses”.
I’m grateful that I have this time with myself now. I’m finally falling in love with my solitude and finding even more things I’m grateful for every single day. I think gratitude is the biggest, most positive thing that is coming out of this pandemic. Everyone is coming together and working together for each other. And we’re all seeing that we’ve taken a lot of things for granted.
Have you noticed that Las Vegas always reacts in the best way possible whenever something bad happens in the town? I love my community and I love my city. I love its people and its businesses. I love Las Vegas. I’m eternally grateful to live in such a beautiful city. Literally everyone is doing their part. A lot of my friends and I are helping spread the word that local restaurants are still open for takeout and delivery, and that they’re all abiding by the new CDC guidelines for food-handling. I’m constantly posting about small businesses and their initiatives during this time. The Las Vegas community is beautiful. And even though I’m technically on furlough, I’m not worried. Because I know we’ll come out of this stronger than before. #VegasStronger
Remember that gratefulness and positivity go a long way. If you change your thoughts, you change your world. Practice good mental wellness practices. And know that this is all temporary. You can go see your friends and grab that cup of coffee on the terraza soon.
I don’t often go for glam looks like this. My style is defined more as a modern bohemian casual look that centers on flowy and comfortable pieces. Needless to say, this look was definitely out of my comfort zone. But I’m all about getting out of my comfort zone. I wanted to rock a look that made me feel confident and powerful. And this look was just that.
I focused a lot on the details for this look, pairing the shimmery sequined top with gold and bold accessories and a red lip. Again, I wanted to go all out. If you’ve followed me for a while, you know that I stick to gold jewelry and watches because that’s what suits my skin tone best.
The blue agate ring is from this shop in South Lake Tahoe. I shopped at Earthbound Trading Co. every single day of my Tahoe vacation. I can’t wait to go back. I wanted to buy the whole store! I bought a lot of jewelry and a Himalayan salt lamp that diffuses essential oils as well. By far my favorite part of Tahoe. It wasn’t the nature or the skiing—it was Earthbound Trading Co.
This shimmery sequined top (it’s actually a mini dress that I styled as a top) features a detailed sequin duck. This is one of those pieces that just caught my eye at the store. Why else would I buy a duck dress? I remember browsing around H&M one day with my family and my mother and aunt thought this piece and the faux fur coat would look good on me. So they bought it for me as an early Christmas present. And I fell in love!
I guess you can say that my style is influenced by both my mother and my aunt. My mom likes a lot of glam trends (think J.Lo and Christina Aguilera) but my aunt likes the girly bohemian trends. So my personal style is a mixture of the two. But then there are days when I look like a boy in sweats, crops and sneakers, so I guess I’m also just a fashion chameleon…
Just wanted to note that I actually shot this set in early 2018. Again, I’m catching up on this huge backlog in my archives of content I never posted on the blog. I’m rediscovering outfits I wore for shoots that I want to wear again for a night out or ladies brunch. I need to repurpose this specific outfit for a night out once Las Vegas is over its lockdown and all the casinos and nightclubs open back up. I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy during social distancing.
If you’ve followed me for a while, you know that I’m never consistent on my blog but I post almost daily on Instagram. It’s hard when working a full-time career in Casino Advertising, doing the influencer thing on Instagram and still having enough energy to find time to write. But that’s all hopefully going to change. Today, I set a goal that every weekend, I’ll write three blog posts and schedule them to post throughout the week. No more excuses. I have so many shoots, so many events, and so much content to write about.
This set was shot in late 2017 by one of my favorite photographers, Juju. When I first started taking my IG game seriously in mid-2017, she taught me how to pose, how to dress, what makeup to wear for shoots and pretty much cultivated my early aesthetic on social media.
I admired her clean and crisp photography and we executed a lot of creative projects together—projects that I never got to post on the blog because of how busy I was with work. Now that I actually have time to write and schedule posts, I’m excited to share everything else I’ve been doing and sharing on Instagram but never quite made it to the blog.
This is how I style glen plaid, probably one of my favorite plaid prints out there. I don’t wear many prints because I like to keep my pieces solid and transitional. I usually shop for things that match my closet, not just buying a cute piece. Whenever I shop, I look at how I can wear that particular piece throughout the whole year.
Glen plaid is one of those prints that one can wear all year round. Pair it with an oversized denim jacket for spring, a kimono and a pair of white sneakers for summer, a red lip and blazer for fall, or a teddy jacket and over-the-knee boots for winter. This is why it’s one of my favorite dresses in my closet.
I’m in love with oversized denim anything—jackets, jeans, button-ups, dresses. Just give me denim and I’m happy. I paired this glen plaid dress with simple strappy heels, denim, a leather cabbie hat, vintage Louis reporter bag, and flowers. I had a thing with flowers before. I bought flowers for almost every shoot I had. And I’m thinking maybe I should start this up again. What do you think? Should I bring back flowers at every shoot?
Red patent leather is a bold move. And I’m all about being bold, in anything I do. It’s all in or nothing at all. Why half-ass something when you can just try your best and hope for success? (Gosh, I sound like a cheesy motivational ad.)
Red is my power color. I feel like a winner in red. It brings out the fierce & fearless side of me and I love that. Sometimes, I need to rely on my outfit to make me feel good. You can relate, right?
This outfit needed balance. The zippered faux patent leather skirt was sexy so I wanted to downplay the sexiness with a crisp white button-up to make it look more sophisticated. I added the cabbie hat to make the look suitable for daytime and paired it with my vintage Louis Vuitton reporter bag.
I shot this with a friend way back in October of 2018 and I remember freezing my butt off because we went to the Strip really early in the morning so we wouldn’t catch the crowds in the shot. Anything for the shot, right?
I’ve made some incredible memories at the Bellagio fountain. Reminiscing about it actually makes me cry. The fun times, the love, the heartbreak, how my heart used to flutter.,, This fountain seems to be the place I go when I want to reminisce. And that’s exactly what was going through my mind when I shot this set. My expression emulated the gratefulness I felt every time I remembered the memories made at this fountain. I’m grateful for the good and the bad. Every memory, every moment is an experience I cherish.
Thanksgiving this year was not traditional for me. In the past years, I’ve spent it with family. This year, my family went to Park City per usual but I wasn’t able to come with. So I went to a Friendsgiving at my chef friends’ place, also one of my favorite lunch spots, Valencian Gold. It was amazing and I was on doggie duty watching two Akita puppies while eating my feast. I reminisced to my most fun Thanksgiving which was 2017 when I spent a few days in Lake Tahoe and realized how far I’ve come since that time.
I’ve grown and transformed in my career, with relationships, perspective, goals in life. I keep reinventing myself and keep going through a cycle of metamorphosis. And I think that’s my normal. Growth is all I’ve known and I’m so grateful for that. I can’t imagine myself ever being stagnant and content. I crave constant movement upwards, constant grinding, persistence, and hard work.
One thing I need to learn is making time to rest. I am so often bombarded with work and obligations that I tend to prioritize that and other people before myself. I guess it’s the Cancer in me. I care a lot, sometimes too much. I need to learn when to slow down and when to grind because that is essential to growth as well. You can’t give if there’s nothing left to give. I always tell all my friends to practice self-care but I need to take my own advice because all I know is being busy on-the-go always.
Here’s a rare photo of my best friend Adrianne and I smiling for once. I gotta say, I’m really grateful for all the people who have come into my life, all the experiences I’ve shared, and all the memories made. I used to love shopping and gifts, but now all I want and value is presence. That’s it. I just need quality time, catching up, eating, hanging out, whatever. I don’t need gifts or material things. Presence is the best present.
I don’t usually put that much effort into Halloween costume because I tend to go pretty basic. Think classic sorority girl in some cheesy lingerie costume. Hey, it’s Halloween, right? Being scantily-clad in public is acceptable for this one night every year. That’s probably why I don’t have many pictures of myself on Halloween—it’s very off-brand of me to be seen wearing said costumes.
This year, I put in a little more thought and effort. This year’s blockbuster season gave me some serious inspo. I wanted to be Pennywise, but didn’t want to give myself nightmares. Instead I decided to be the female version Joker. I wanted to be not-so-basic. Joker, but make it fashion.
I wanted to keep the costume understated and sophisticated. No corny green and purple theme going on here. The vision was to keep it very classic—my own unique interpretation of Joker. So, I went with a classic Calvin Klein pinstripe black suit. Modern, sexy and sophisticated.
I wanted to give the movie a proper homage, but add my own special twist. It was definitely a challenge to get the right balance of accurate and cute. I didn’t want to look scary, and I definitely did not want to wear white face paint. My makeup only took 15 minutes! And for someone who’s not really good at makeup, I’m pretty proud of the end result.
We had a great night partying on Halloween night (which was a Thursday)! Can you believe that I didn’t have ONE drink and even went to work the next morning? Yes, I’m a trooper. It’s a lifestyle.
But the party doesn’t stop after October 31st…
We hit up a penthouse party downtown for about an hour. I haven’t been to the Ogden in a while, and I definitely missed the views at the penthouse patio. You can see the whole Las Vegas Strip from their penthouse deck. And we got to see friends who dressed up as IT and Georgie.
I came as Minnie Mouse because I honestly just got lazy. It was an easy and fun costume that didn’t get in my way or make me feel annoyed after wearing it for a bit. Plus, I hadn’t broken out that dress in a year! It was time to wear it again. This year’s Halloween was definitely different from my previous ones. I used to buy costumes but I quite like the idea of repurposing pieces from my closet to create a movie-inspired look. I think I’ll be doing this from now on…
The party didn’t stop after the penthouse. We decided to go to KAOS Dayclub & Nightclub at the Palms and I’m so grateful we did. They had just premiered their Demon Dome on Halloween and we wanted to check it out. That next Monday, KAOS closed its doors—one of my favorite clubs and also the largest dayclub in the world. It just reminds you how Vegas business works and I’m glad I’m not working for the clubs anymore.
Halloween 2019 was definitely one for the books. Best Halloween I’ve had, ever.