Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


                 Well it's been some time again. But I'd like to try and get back in a groove on here. Fall is coming to a close and summer is pretty much a blurry memory. A lot of exciting things are happening over in Bellavia world.
             We spent the summer looking for houses and deciding where we'd like to settle down. In August we found out we have a little one on the way! It's pretty much been a roller coaster ride since then. So many ups and downs with this house and the painstakingly long process the banks put you through now. But it will all be worth it when we have a place to call home!
             The baby ride has also been! Yes I'm SO over the moon excited, but the morning sickness was the worst! I'm the type of person that just never gets sick or throws up and that was a feeling I was not expecting. Now I seem to be coming out of that cloud. My energy is coming back and I'm almost back to normal with my eating (accept for marinara sauce, that is the devil!).
       I have SO SO much to be thankful for this thanksgiving, as I'm sure everyone does. Blame it on the hormones but when I think about all the good in my life, my family and friends, this little miracle growing inside of me, my wonderfully supportive and giving husband, it just brings tears to my eyes and once that starts, I cant stop it! So I will end here with a very happy thanksgiving to all you lovely readers (if you are in fact still visiting my little world here). I'll be back again soon! I always always come back!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

New Items on Society 6!!

Hello Lovers! I'm going to completely ignore the big elephant in the room (aka: my blogging absence) and just let you in on a new design of mine that's available on society 6. She's a new magazine Cover Girl illustrated by me. I just lover her so, and can already see some other "cover girls" in the future along with note cards, so stay tuned!! xoxo

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Summer Skin Essentials

Let's face it, summer is sexy, and fun. Bare skin, hot weather, sun kissed cheeks all make me feel extra feminine. But it also can do some serious damage. Between being over exposed to harmful UV rays, accumulation of sweat, and greasy sunscreens, we are more prone to breakouts, heat rash, eczema break outs, and other irritations. I've been testing out these products for a few months now and I can attest that my testy sensitive skin has honestly never looked better. In addition to the products listed in this post I still adhere to most of the skin care regime that I posted about here. I can't live without my Clarisonic and Philosophy cleanser. But I have stopped using the No 7 Protect & Perfect Skin care items. And my Tanda zap has not been needed lately because I haven't had any break outs. That's a total win for me!

  1. Clearasil Ultra Salicylic cleansing pads: I use these after I scrub with my clarisonic and cleanse with toner. In the AM I use only this after I shower. It leaves my skin feeling so fresh and eliminates extra oil. If I ever do have a blemish they seem to disappear over night!
  2. CeraVe AM & PM face moisturizers: After the Clearasil pads, I put on two pumps of this AM or PM moisturizer. These are so lightweight oil free. Also they contain ceramides that help maintain moisture on the skin. They also contain a patented formula that creates a protective barrier on the skin. And the price tag is not too hefty!
  3. Too Faced Coconut Body Bronzing Oil & St. Tropez Self Tanning Foam: Since I protect my skin every time I'm outdoors I don't tan much. I use these two tanning produtcts to give my skin a nice glow. I even use the tanning foam on my face at night even though they make one for the face. I have yet to have any irritation.
  4. CeraVe Body & Face Suncreen: I use this brand for my sunscreen because they contain all the good things that the face moisturizers have. They are also non-comedogenic and oil free!
 I hope you are all having a wonderful summer and protecting that gorgeous skin!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Nutella Peanut butter Graham Non-Dairy Ice Cream

Ok So I'll admit I have an addiction to making ice creams. It's insanely easy, so much fun, and absolutely delicious! Not all my Ice creams turn out good (like the mint Julep non dairy one that took me forever and never actually froze up! I didn't even bother posting about that one!) but when they do turn out well, I feel its my non-diary ice cream maker duty to inform my lovely readers. I think I'll make it a weekly habit this summer to post a non-dairy ice cream recipe. What do you guys think about that? I know it will certainly make my husband happy!
        This recipe was inspired by my Husband's love for peanut butter and my love for Nutella. Of course we added a cookie for crunch. Because the BEST ice creams always have a crunch factor. We had some grahams so that's what I threw in. Now, Nutella isn't actually non-dairy. I particularly don't mind that. But if you do and you really want to make this 100% non-dairy, feel free to make your own version of Nutella as opposed to buying the store bought version.


  1. 1 can of full fat coconut milk (to get the closest to real ice cream don't use the light version)
  2. 1/4 cup unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  3. 4 tbs raw honey
  4. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  5. 4 tbs coconut cream - This will make your ice cream creamy and also add some sweetness. This stuff has a lot of sugar so you can omit and just adjust your honey if you don't care to use this. It is also very calorie heavy so if your concerned with that, I would suggest omitting.
  6. 4-5 cracked graham crackers. (leave them in chunks)
  7. 1/4 cup peanut butter I use this one. It's the best tasting peanut butter I've ever had!
  8. 1/4 cup Nutella (or you can make you own non-dairy one following this recipe)
    Combine your coconut milk, honey, coconut cream, and vanilla and whisk till everything is incorporated. Add your cocoa powder and whisk until it's all incorporated.  Pour your mixture into an ice cream maker and mix according to the directions adding in the graham crackers during the last 5 minutes of mixing. Mean while, pop your peanut butter and Nutella (in separate bowls) into the microwave for a quick 30-50 seconds so it's a more liquid consistency. Pour them into your ice cream maker at the same time. Only let the mixer go for another 2 min max. You don't want the peanut butter and Nutella blending in too much. You want to aim for a swirl effect. Your ice cream will seem melted because you heated the extras. That's ok. Just transfer your ice cream mix to a container and freeze for an extra hour before serving. Enjoy!!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Flamigo Note Pads in the Etsy shop!!

Happy Monday!! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!!
      Just wanted to let you lovely readers know about a new item up in my Etsy shop. These magnetic note pads are perfect for grocery lists, to do list. Any kind of lists! You can buy them here.

 Follow my shop's instagram for more updates!!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Happy Friday!!

Happy Friday lovelies!! I hope you all had a wonderful week! The weather has been heating up here in NY and I'm so loving this little taste of summer we have. The Hubs and I plan on hitting the beach this weekend, here's what else I'm looking forward to...
1 / 2 

Do you lovely readers have any special plans? I'd love to hear!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Hello All my lovely readers! I've been quite a miss lately. There has been so much going on for me I just had to unfortunately put something a side for a bit. I have been working on a very special wedding invitation suite for my very first client and I am so so excited about it. I cant wait to take photos and share it with you all. Also there have been some exciting new changes going on with my company I work for full time designing girls clothes. It's been a whirlwind of a week! But hopefully this week I'll get back into a little groove of posting. :) In the meantime I'm so excited to tell you all about a special little giveaway for my Etsy shop over on Pearls & Pastries Shop. Lauren has a little etsy shop of her own with some deliciously girlie items! Head over to her blog to see how to enter and what you can win!!   I love how Lauren styled my items for her photos below!!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Non-Dairy Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream

I like Ice cream. No I mean REALLY like ice cream. So much that I think the first little argument my husband and I had was over the fact that I polished off his Ben and Jerry's Milk and cookies in one whole sitting. Yes, I like ice cream THAT much. So when I gave up most dairy products including ice cream I had come up with some replacements like frozen Kefir, which I made here. While I find frozen Kefir delicious, and refreshing, it's still not ice cream. Oh how I've longed for the creamy texture and soft sweet taste of full fat milk based ice cream. This recipe is creamy, sweet, and so close to traditional ice cream that my husband requested I make a Milk and Cookies inspired version next! I'll have to play around with that idea! For now this strawberry shortcake version hits the spot.

  1. 1 can of full fat coconut milk (to get the closest to real ice cream don't use the light version)
  2. Strawberries quartered and smashed (I used about 20)
  3. 4 tbs raw honey
  4. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  5. 4 tbs coconut cream - This will make your ice cream creamy and also add some sweetness. This stuff has a lot of sugar so you can omit and just adjust your honey if you don't care to use this. It is also very calorie heavy so if your concerned with that, I would suggest omitting.
  6. 4-5 cracked graham crackers. (leave them in chunks)
    Combine your coconut milk, honey, coconut cream, and vanilla and whisk till everything is incorporated. Add your strawberries and whisk well mashing any larger chunks of berries you see as you go.  Pour your mixture into an ice cream maker and mix according to the directions adding in the graham crackers during the last 5 minutes of mixing. Enjoy!

Makes 6 servings, approximately 250 calories per serving

Friday, May 10, 2013


 {art/type by Monique Bellavia}

Sending all you Mama's out there lots of love and kisses this weekend!! xoxo

Thursday, May 9, 2013

The Pink Flamingo Cocktail

Lately I've been on a bit of a grapefruit kick. This has to be the strangest thing because my whole life I've avoided grapefruit like the plague. I just couldn't take it's bitter tartness. But I think as you get older your taste buds change and I've been finding myself craving this juicy bitter fruit. Don't worry this drink isn't overly bitter or tart. The orange juice, and splash of cranberry cut it perfectly. Here's my recipe for this delicious crisp springtime cocktail.

*Makes approx 4 cocktails.

Juice of 2 Grapefruits
Juice of 1 lime
Juice of 1 Orange
Splash of Cranberry (per serving)
Fresh mint
1/2 tsp sugar (optional)
sugar for the rim
1 shot Vodka-1 shot per drink (Titos is my vodka of choice)
Lillet Rose aperitif -1 shot per drink

I peeled my fruit and used my juicer to get the most juice out of them. After all the juicing is done muddle the mint in a cocktail shaker, I used 2-3 sprigs of mint per drink. Pour enough of the juice mixture for one drink into the shaker with the mint, add the splash of cranberry, sugar (if using) and the vodka and Lillet, shake shake shake (yes I sing that as I make cocktails) pour over ice into a sugar rimmed rocks glass (aren't these flamingo ones perfect!). Garnish with fresh mint and a lime wheel and enjoy!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

8 Day Flowers

         So I'm not going to pretend at all that this is something I came up with on my own. My florist actually let me in on this little trick. I do it now with every flower I buy, save a few that have too soft a stem like hyacinths. But typically this trick can be used with most flowers. All you do is snip your flowers to the desired length for your vase. I use a tape measure after perfecting the length on one and then go along with that measurement for the rest (yes I am that anal!). Take any old hammer and smash the end of the flower stem till it's just broken. This will allow the flower to absorb more water. Sprinkle the flower food, and about 1/2 tsp of sugar into the water and mix up. Arrange your flowers and change the water every other day.  My florist may have told me this trick but I buy most of my flowers at the local deli on my way home on Fridays. I typically don't buy fully bloomed I buy them when they look like they are just about to bloom. This also helps prolong the life.  Enjoy your 8 day flowers!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Cinco De Mayo and Derby Day!

There is definitely no need for competition with these two events. I just cant decide which look I'm going for and what I'll be drinking! (I know the toughest of decisions stumps us all!) Either way I'm so excited to be venturing to Jersey with the Hubs for his family's annual "Cinco De Derby" day. I know the husband will be sticking with Bourbon and Most likely I'll be hitting the Tequila! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend filled with Margaritas and Mint Juleps!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Juice Pulp Bread

My Husband and I are big juicers. We love the jolt it gives us in the morning and typically 3 times a week we juice a vegetable blend for breakfast and sip while we get ready for work. On weekends however we prefer a fruitier mix. Makes it taste more like a weekend treat. Also we usually drink a much smaller portion followed by homemade chocolate chip pancakes (because that's what you just do on Saturdays!). This is what we do with all that fruity juicy left over pulp!

  • 2 cups pulp from fresh juice (see below for my favorite mix)
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 or 2 very ripe bananas
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1tbsp flax meal (optional)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 medjool dates (pitted) 
  • Toasted coconut flakes for topping (optional)

This is my go to juice blend: 3 large carrots, 2 large red apples, 1 large cucumber, 4 celery stalks, 6 medium sized strawberries, and occasionally one orange. The juicer I use is this one and I love it. It's affordable, easy to clean, and pretty compact.
     After I make the juice I set it aside.  I put a hand full of kale or spinach into my magic bullet and puree. Then I mix the juice and the puree together. It's refreshing and delicious!! To make bread or muffins with the pulp left over from the juice blend, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Put all the above ingredients (minus the coconut flakes) into a blender till it's well blended. Then I either just make muffins or one whole bread loaf, and top it off with the toasted coconut before baking for 30-40 minutes.  
    The medjool dates add just a hint of caramel sweetness. If you want a sweeter taste feel free to add 2-3 tbsp of brown sugar. Personally I enjoy mine best when cold, but I can never help myself when it's hot right out of the oven! This recipe will work with any juice pulp really so feel free to get creative.

P.S. My shop and blog are now on facebook! WOOHOO! Feel free to like me over there! :) xoxo
LA BELLA VIA on Facebook.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Bar Cart Essentials

I'm thrilled to tell you all that I joined the cool kids clubs and got myself a pretty awesome vintage bar cart. I had wanted one for a while, but wasn't ready to shell out mega bucks and I hadn't come across THE one till now.  I stumbled upon this one up top via Etsy and my jaw just dropped. It's in impeccable condition and was a steal at $350.00! And it also came with a bonus matching serving tray! I pretty much have a ton of bar accessories already that I've been collecting over the years, but a little update here and there cant hurt can it. :)
  1. Vintage Bar Cart (Purchased here, Similar one here)
  2. Hudson Baby Bourbon Whiskey (currently my Husband's favorite)
  3. Tito's Handmade Vodka (my favorite)
  4. Lillet Rosé Aperitif (my absolute favorite nightcap)
  5. Pellegrino Mineral Water
  6. C Wonder Pineapple cocktail stirrers
  7. C Wonder Rocks Glass
  8. C Wonder Highball Glass
  9. Jonathan Adler Coasters
  10. Vintage tray (perfect for displaying lemons and limes)
  11. Mr. Ice Bucket

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Apartment lust

Just thought I'd share with you some apartment eye candy. This is the old clock tower in Dumbo Brooklyn that's been remodeled into an incredible huge 6,813 square foot penthouse with 360 degree views. Just a cool 18 million. A girl can dream...

Monday, April 22, 2013

Currently Lusting


I'm already thinking of summer brights, and cheeky swimwear. I just love all these items!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Etsy Round Up

One of my favorite things to do is browse Etsy for hrs on end. I love coming across new designers, and artists. These items are just a few of what I'm lusting after right now. Do you guys have any awesome Etsy shops to share?

  1. HoneycombStudio
  2. Taylor Crafts
  3. Handmade by Me Shop
  4. Rouge & Co
  5. Eastwitching

Monday, April 15, 2013

Life Lately...

Beautiful spring blooms that stayed fresh and beautiful for 8 days! 
(tips to come)

Made a loaf with the leftover pulp from a juice this weekend.
(How to coming soon!)

My new vase (purchased here) matches so perfectly with my new
spring nail colors.

These shoes are making my feet very happy!

My Notebooks are available for sale here!! 

 Still day dreaming of life in Mexico, Take me back!

What are all of my lovely readers up to lately? I would love to know!

P.S. I think I may have a giveaway in the works soon! Stay tuned!!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Spring Shrimp Salad

So here's how Saturday went: We wake up after a long night of picking up our little dog from my parents on LI. He was staying with them while we vacationed in Mexico. Mexico, as amazing as it was has left me feeling, bloated, fat, sluggish, and everything that pounds of guacamole, rice, and mimosas will do to you after 4 days of indulging in the sun. So we made a pact to get back on track before it gets any worse. We started the morning with fresh juices, then I made some muffins with the pulp for a snack (no sugar added just 2 medjool dates for sweetness) and then this salad for lunch. It was light, and crisp. The perfect spring salad. It also satisfied us enough that a little snack was sufficient enough for dinner. You can also sub the shrimp for chicken (my husband needs to watch his cholesterol so it's a good option). I hope you enjoy it!

1 1/2 cups cooked and peeled shrimp
1 1/2 bags fresh spinach
1/4 cup whole walnuts
1 orange peeled and cubed (you can also use a mango with is amazing as well!)
1 avocado cubed
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
crushed red pepper (to taste)
Blue Cheese (as much as you like!)
Cooked Quinoa (see cooking direction here)

Marinate the shrimp in lemon, crushed red pepper, and cilantro for about 20 min. Toss  the shrimp and everything else together adding the avocado and blue cheese last. Top with warm fluffy quinoa, and a little dressing. My friend Annie's (of All Natural Annie) husband introduced me to his homemade dressing which is similar to this one and it is just perfect for this salad!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Remeber that time...

Sooooo remember that time I said I really didn't want to leave the city and buy a house in the burbs? I said that here. Well.....I take it back....I think.... I mean these images make me reeeaaallllly crave a bigger space. So now I think we need a house. My poor husband is going to go crazy with how fickle I am. Please tell me I'm not the only one?!?

Friday, April 5, 2013

Color Crush

 {all images via pinterest}

 Totally crushing on these super bright mixes. Hope you all have a wonderful weekend! xo