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Spindrift® + A Quick Refreshing Mocktail

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Spindrift® and a Quick Refreshing Healthy Mocktail Recipe

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Spindrift® and a Quick Refreshing Healthy Mocktail Recipe

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Spindrift® and a Quick Refreshing Healthy Mocktail Recipe

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Spindrift® and Her Campus Media. All words and opinions are my own.

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you guys had an awesome weekend. I worked both Friday & Saturday so my Sunday was too short but well-spent catching up on some content deadlines, brunching, a family picnic, and watching the latest episode of Power. Two things to touch on… 1. have you guys tried First Watch? Why have I not been there before?! Josh is such a fan of their avocado toast and I loved my cold brew and BLT eggs benny. ALSO – THE MILLIONAIRE’S BACON?! SO GOOD. Next time I want to try their Insta-famous A.M. Superfoods Bowl. Ok and 2. Does anyone else watch Power? It’s seriously such an aggressive, violent show but veryyy addicting to watch. Goodbye Sunday night Kardashians.

But let’s get to the point of the blog post.

Summer is winding down but that doesn’t mean my taste buds are. I crave refreshing, light, fruity flavors at all times of the year and I like to get my fix with Spindrift® sparkling water. To be honest, I don’t really like regular sodas so water has always been my one and only go-to drink of choice. But as of lately, I’ve really been into sparkling water to spice things up a bit. Do you guys remember when I used one of the Spindrift® flavors in an old cocktail recipe about a year ago (2 Ingredient Spiked Summer Seltzer)? Too good and too easy, right? I love that Spindrift® is bubbly (but not too bubbly!) and only made with sparkling water and real fruit. That’s it!

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Spindrift® and a Quick Refreshing Healthy Mocktail Recipe

While I love to drink these as are and by themselves, if I’m feeling fancy, I like to mix and match flavors and add a few garnishes. Here’s just one my favorite ways to make a mocktail with Spindrift®:

MOCKTAIL INGREDIENTS

one half parts Cucumber Spindrift

one half parts Lemon Spindrift

mint

sliced cucumber

I get my Spindrift® at my local Trader Joe’s. Find out where you can get your hands on some here.

P.S. Stay tuned for the cutest Instagram giveaway with this brand!

August Sale Alert: Tops + Bottoms All Under $50

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | August 14, 2017 Sale Alerts Tops and Bottoms All Under $50
Here’s a quick  round up of some of my favorite sales happening right now. I found lots of tops, jackets, and bottoms that will be perfect for the summer to fall transition.
Stay tuned for another post today!
TOPS UNDER $50
BOTTOMS UNDER $50

Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks®

This post has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SavorFallFlavors #CollectiveBias

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

August is here and you know what that means…

FALL IS COMIN’ IN HOT… and it’s approaching quickly! By this time of the year, I start to crave all of those cuddly, cozy fall feels. Think lots of leather (YES), oversized sweaters (more room for carb overload!), crisp mornings, and… *drum roll*… pumpkin flavored everything! I say that proudly, knowing that I am “that girl”.

To be honest, I wish seasonal flavored coffees were available to indulge in year round. But maybe that’s why they taste so dang good when that time of year rolls around!

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger | Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes | Cozy, Caffeine Mornings With Starbucks ®

So I have a PSA for all of you coffee-sipping addicts out there…

If you want something really delicious to start your day, then you have got to try the Starbucks® Pumpkin Spice Caffè Latte K-Cup® pods. Talk about a party in your mouth! This limited-time only Starbucks® drink goes down so smoothly and it’s spiced just perfectly. The best thing about these K-Cups® are that they can be purchased at Giant Eagle. That means FALL comes to ME right in my own home! No need to splurge on specialty drinks every morning.

I have a family-famous homemade Banana Bread recipe that my mom taught me to make that goes amazing with the Starbucks® Pumpkin Spice Caffè Latte! Here’s the recipe:

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 stick of butter

1 and 1/3 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups sifted all purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

¾ tsp salt

1 cup sour cream

1 cup mashed very ripe bananas (about 2 medium)

DIRECTIONS:

Cream butter then gradually add sugar and beat until fluffy

Beat in eggs one at a time

Add vanilla

Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt

Add dry mixture to creamed mixture, alternating with sour cream

Add bananas to mixture until everything blended

Grease pan and bake at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes

How do you guys like to start your morning? Is anyone else dependent on caffeine like I am? My routine is pretty standardized, but you can be sure that I’ll be sipping my Starbucks® Pumpkin Spice Caffè Lattes every morning during the fall season!

Be sure to check your local grocery stores for this veryy delicious coffee drink!

Kissing July Goodbye in Gingham + 6 Blogging Tips For Newbs

GINGHAM OFF THE SHOULDER DRESS | CLOSET ACCESS CROSS BODY | WHITE SNEAKERS | 90S ROUND GLASSES

Hey guys! Does anyone know where July went?! I feel like it was just a minute ago that I was sitting on my butt drinking mojitos in Paradise. CRAZY.

But anyway, I’m here today to talk about BLOGGING. I get emails quite frequently asking me how/why I got started so I thought it’d be helpful to curate a little list of tips and tricks that I’ve learned along the way. While I’m still learning the game myself, I think I’ve got some good starter advice for anyone who is thinking of heading down this path.

+ First things first, think long and hard about what you want to name your blog. This is so important. Think of it as a first impression. Does this name represent you and your brand? Do you want your your blog name to be long and wordy or do you prefer it to be short and simple? Does it sound neutral, edgy or feminine? What will people envision or expect to find when they read your blog name? For example, if you want to start a fashion blog but plan to incorporate recipe posts, then maybe you shouldn’t include any fashion specific wordage.  This is definitely something that I wish I would have put more thought into when I first started blogging. I remember sitting down with my sister and just picking a random, catchy name. Or so I THOUGHT it was catchy at the time. The Domestic Diva Diaries was my first born blog name. I kept the name for about a year until I realized that it totally did NOT represent me or the direction of my brand. Re-branding after a whole year of creating an image under a different name wasn’t easy but I’m so glad that I did. Side note: some of my friends still call me “The DDD”. LOL!!

+ Find your voice. Will you be funny or serious? Informative or to the point? Will you use hashtags and emojis? Be consistent with how you voice yourself on your blog and social platforms. This is a way for your readers to get to know you and your personality. Most importantly, be YOU!

+ Be consistent. This is to be said for mostly every aspect of blogging. But what I’m referring to here is to post content consistently. I must admit, this is so much easier said than done. A lot of aspiring bloggers don’t realize how much time and effort is put into keeping up with a blog and it’s social platforms so BEWARE! But think about your posting schedule before you start. Will you post twice a week? Once a week? Whatever it is that you choose, stick with it! You want your readers to catch on to when they can expect new content. You can’t drop off for a few weeks then toss up a post and expect people to read it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that and your analytics will prove that to you.

+ Tighten up on your photography skills. People want to see aesthetically appealing images so learn as much as you can. Take a class if need be. Pinterest has awesome articles that you can use to try to teach yourself. Invest in good lighting as well as a good camera if funds allow. I use these soft boxes, this camera, and this tripod. With the right lighting and filter, iPhone pictures don’t come out so bad either so all of the fancy stuff is not always necessary to become successful. I still have so much I want to learn when it comes to photography so I can’t offer much advice but I can tell you that your photos are KEY!

+ Plan, plan, plan!!! I must admit, I am the definition of the phrase ‘procrastination at its finest’. Planning has never been my strongest suit and has caused me a lot of stress with juggling jobs and hitting deadlines. But I’ve gotten better! If you can plan ahead by making lists or dedicating certain days/times to doing X,Y, and Z then you will be way better off in the long run.

+ Make sure your blog posts are valuable to your readers. As much as you’d like to think your followers just want to see pictures of you in your latest #OOTD, they really don’t. While it works for some, I think it makes the most sense to include something that is of value within each blog post for your readers. That could be advice, a recipe, a relatable story, a playlist, or something more informative. You don’t want your readers to leave your site feeling like its all about you! Because how boring is that.

SHOP THE POST

 

Super Affordable & Discounted Swimwear Under $30

Pittsburgh Life and Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Summer 2017 Discounted Swimwear Under $30

I had a ton of fun with the swim styles that I picked out for summer 2017. Maybe too much fun. **looks at credit card statement** I shared most of my bathing suits and coverups on my Instagram feed and story during my trip to the Dominican back in June. I receieved a bunch of DMs asking where I got everything from so I thought it’d be helpful to share my favorite pieces but ALL UNDER $30! By this point in the summer, most stores transition to fall and you can really luck out on some great deals! So without further ado, here are my very affordable and discounted swimwear picks:

6 Beauty Products To Stay Dewy, Bronzed, and Highlighted Year Round

Pittsburgh Life and Personal Style blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | 6 Favorite Beauty Products To Stay Dewy, Bronzed, and Highlighted Year Round

Keeping a dewy, bronzed glow in the summertime months is easy. But maintaining that sun-kissed look year round is (very sadly) impossible in Pittsburgh. They say that “pale is in”, but I am certainly no Amanda Seyfried sooooo that doesn’t really work well for me. With that being said, I’m listing all of my favorite tanning, bronzing, and highlighting beauty products that I’ve used and loved over the years!

VITA LIBERATA 2-3 WEEK TINTED TANNING MOUSSE

Of all of the self tanners that I’ve tried, Vita Liberata is my absolute favorite. I love how easy it is to apply with the application mit without looking orange and streaky. It dries super fast and doesn’t leave you sticky and smelly either!

VITA LIBERATA TINTED LOTION

Another favorite from the Vita Liberata collection. You don’t need to use the mit with this lotion but I always make sure to wash my hands after applying it. I like to use this particular product on a more regular basis than the mousse.

ANASTASIA CONTOUR KIT

To be honest, I have no clue what I’m really doing when it comes to contouring but this palette makes it easy! I have the light to medium kit for reference.

E.L.F. CONTOURING BLUSH AND BRONZING POWDER

Two thumbs up for this e.l.f palette!! It sat in my drawer for the longest time but once I used it I was reaaaaal into it! I have the color set ‘St. Lucia’ and love the peach toned blush! It looks gorg on top of a tan.

E.L.F. BAKED HIGHLIGHTER

I’ve been using this **three dollar** powder highlighter for months now and it’s no joke. Honestly, what is three dollars these days anyway?! You’ve gotta try it!

MAC CREAM COLOR BASE

If you’re looking for a more high-end product for highlighting and ‘dewing’ (yes, I just created a verb) then this is definitely the one! I use the color ‘Pearl’.

SHOP THE POST

Roasted Strawberries and Creamy Coconut Milk Popsicles

Pittsburgh Life and Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Roasted Strawberries and Creamy Coconut Milk Popsicles | Summer Recipes

Pittsburgh Life and Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Roasted Strawberries and Creamy Coconut Milk Popsicles | Summer Recipes

Pittsburgh Life and Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Roasted Strawberries and Creamy Coconut Milk Popsicles | Summer Recipes

Pittsburgh Life and Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos | Roasted Strawberries and Creamy Coconut Milk Popsicles | Summer Recipes

Reporting live from Myrtle Beach!

…and with a bomb summer popsicles recipe.

I got so much heat via Instagram DM from my too-honest friends when I posted these “summer” popsicles in-the-making wearing a full blown winter outfit. It’s called air conditioning, people! I’m always freezing cold. Ask any of my family members (or Josh — who wants to kill me for setting the thermostat to 90 degrees).

Side note: that sweatshirt is super comfy and on sale so you’re actually welcome!

I ALSO got made fun of by Josh (shocker!) for looking like a (so-called) “potato bug” in my airport jumpsuit. Needless to say, I was more than satisfied when he overheard a random woman in the security line compliment me on my potato bug onesie! Shout out to that random woman!

…But I digress.

I could definitely go for one of these creamy pops right about now. Thanks to Fork Knife Swoon for the major recipe inspo! These are to-die!

INGREDIENTS:

1 lb strawberries

2-3 tsp balsamic vinegar

1/2 cup pure maple syrup

1.5 cups full fat coconut milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

pinch of salt

DIRECTIONS:

Drizzle strawberries with balsamic and bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes (let them cool)

Add roasted strawberries and 1/4 cup of maple syrup and blend (should have small chunks)

In a separate bowl, whisk coconut milk (or any dairy of choice), vanilla, and other 1/4 maple syrup

layer popsicles and freeze (I purchased these molds online)

 

The Best of The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares her Nordstrom Anniversary Sale favorite picks and deals
The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale has started and it’s reaaaal good. To be honest, I almost passed up posting about the #Nsale because I felt like you guys were already seeing it all over your social feeds. And I didn’t want to add to the annoyance. But by popular demand, most of you requested to see my finds/deals/favorites when I asked on Instagram! So here we are!!
#NSALE TOPS + JACKETS
#NSALE SHOES

#NSALE BOTTOMS

#NSALE BEAUTY

Important dates to keep in mind when shopping the Nordstrom Anni Sale:
EARLY ACCESS SALE ONLY: July 13th – July 20th
SALE OPENS TO EVERYONE: July 21 – August 6

Long Shorts Are The New Short Shorts + Why I Quit Hair Extensions

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blog | Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos | Long Shorts Are The New Short Shorts | Hair Extensions | Featuring: MissguidedPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blog | Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos | Long Shorts Are The New Short Shorts | Hair Extensions | Featuring: Missguided

MISSGUIDED DENIM SHORTS | WHITE FLATFORM SNEAKERS | OVERSIZED GRAPHIC T-SHIRT DRESS | 90S ROUND SUNGLASSES

Greetings from RAINY, NEVER SUNNY Pittsburgh!

**Note: my wet, ratty hair in these photos because, naturally, it’s always down pouring in the Burgh**

Myrtle Beach can’t come soon enough.

Today I’m wearing these destroyed denim longer-length shorts. Yes– LONG SHORTS. Can I get an AMEN?! Do you guys remember how freaking MINIATURE shorts were about a decade ago? I mean how did we ever even fit 1 single leg into those baby Hollister shorts?! Do they still make those? Or am I just 27 and old?

Regardless, thank god for the high-waisted trend and these long shorts because I am so not a fan of showing cheeks.

SHOP MY FAVORITE LONG SHORTS

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blog | Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos | Long Shorts Are The New Short Shorts | Hair Extensions | Featuring: MissguidedPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blog | Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos | Long Shorts Are The New Short Shorts | Hair Extensions | Featuring: Missguided

photos: Lex King

Now on to why I’m throwing in the towel when it comes to hair extensions.

Or maybe I should rephrase. I’m not “allowing” myself to get hair extensions again. And my hair stylist promised me that she wouldn’t let me either!

Sure, I loved them, and they gave me a boost of confidence! Because what’s better than long, luscious, curls? But there’s also a money and maintenance component that comes along with having fake hair. After having them for a total of about 3 years, here’s my take on hair extensions:

THE PROS

the beachy, loose curl look is easy to achieve

they didn’t damage my hair and my hair actually grew while I had them in

they’re super fun to have while you’re still living at home (…and aren’t broke)

they’re so, so pretty (unless your hair stylist doesn’t know how to blend them)

THE CONS

they are time consuming — I always had to curl them (I thought mine looked bad if I kept them straight)

they took a good chunk out of my wallet over the months and years

they are most certainly NOT practical when you have other bills to pay

it took me about 7 years to dry my hair every time I washed it

I started to feel too “fake” (to each their own, though!)

I’m aiming for more simplicity and practicality in my late twenties. Josh keeps messing with me now that I had my 27th birthday that I’m no longer in my early or mid twenties (insert shifty-eyed emoji). WE’LL SEE HOW THE NEW AND IMPROVED ADULTING PLAN GOES!!

**looks in closet and sees 30 pairs of black heels**

Talk soon!

This Summer’s Hottest Shoes And Sandals Under $50

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos - Summer 2017's Hottest Shoes and Sandals Under $50

From one shoe lover to the next, I’m sharing all of my favorite finds of the season which are all under $50! So many mules, slides, and block heels to choose from!!

Hope everyone has a fabulous 4th of July!

The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort: My Review

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

Hey, hey, hellooooo.

I’m FINALLY getting around to recapping my trip to Punta Cana with Josh! The resort that we stayed at, The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort, was nothing short of FABULOUS. I can’t believe it’s over.

*Cue: real tears*

The grounds at The Barcelo Bavaro were so lush and beautiful (much “greener” than resorts in Mexico in my opinion). The Barcelo Bavaro Beach was so blue, clear, and calm. This particular resort was pretty big but most of the nightlife, restaurants, and events were centrally located near the main lobby so that made it feel a bit smaller. We only used the shuttle once during our stay because everything was fairly walk-able. We were sweaty, buzzed, and tired that day…lol.  The adults only area was only a quick 5 minute walk from us which had a separate buffet, different pool bars, and there were no kiddos running around. Be sure to hit up La Piña in the adults area for a frozen cocktail served in real pineapples or coconuts. Naturally, I had to get my hands on one.

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

[ shop: palm leaf kimono | similar & on sale here ]

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

So I’m just going to dive right in and highlight some things we did during our stay and what we loved about The Barcelo Bavaro! …which was just about everything!

Disclosure: While I paid for this travel, many of the services provided were complimentary. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that support Balance & Chaos!

THE U-SPA

We had access to the gorgeous spa for 45 minutes every day during our week long stay. The spa had it’s own private outdoor infinity pool with massage jets. The indoor area was super cool. It had 2 saunas (wet and dry), cold and hot tubs, and 4 different “showers”. For example there was a “Scottish Shower” and “Turkish Shower” — each which had it’s own automated system that alternated hot and cold water sprays.  I need to research this because I found it super interesting! Josh and I had no clue what these showers were but we each jumped into separate ones and of course I got sprayed right in the face with cold water. Awesome!

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

[ shop: one piece off the shoulder bathing suit – ON SALE, GUYS! ]

COUPLES MASSAGE

We were lucky enough to experience a morning beach massage on the beach. The little hut that they led us to for the massage was quiet, cool, and breezy. I’m getting chills thinking about the sound of the seashell curtain during the massage! There is literally nothing better than getting up after a massage and feeling like you just DIED. And when I say “died” I mean that in a the best way possible. Our massage was followed by a bottle of chilled champagne so you can imagine we were feeling reallyyyyy good by 10:00am!

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

EXCURSIONS

We only did 1 excursion while we were on the trip. There was a ton to do at the resort so I don’t like to speed up my vacation with too many off-resort ventures. We picked Scape Park, where you can basically customize your excursion once you get there. Of all the activities, we chose to zip-line and check out Hoyo Azul. Okay, if you know me, you know I am not “A ZIPLINER”. But shout out to Josh for forcing me out of my comfort zone and allowing me to have near death experience memories! Just like last year when I rode on the back of his jet-ski in the ocean! Alright, I’m just kidding! It was definitely safe and we had an awesome time zip-lining. I can’t believe the one line was 1/2 a mile! I totally recommend this excursion if you’re in Punta Cana.

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

[ shop: one piece orange swimsuit | sold out but similar here and here ]

EATS

Let me just say that I am still dreaming of the cappuccinos that they served there! You could get them anywhere but the main lobby bar made them the best with a little cinnamon sugar garnish on top of the froth.

As far as the a la carte dinners, we REALLY enjoyed Kyoto (Japanese hibachi and sushi), La Fuente (Spanish), La Dolce Vita (Italian), and La Comedie (French). You need a reservation for any of the a la carte restaurants.

The buffet is pretty much open at all hours and we preferred to eat at the one over in the adults only section. We found that this one was way more appetizing for a quick breakfast or lunch. We didn’t find out until the end of the trip but there’s a buffet at El Coral which is located right on the beach with great views of the ocean.

For breakfast one morning, we went to Hole 19 which sits on the golf course. You don’t need reservations for this restaurant which made it easy. I don’t think many people knew about Hole 19 since it’s isolated from the other dining options!

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

[ shop: palm print halter top | palm print bottoms | one piece option, same print ]

THINGS TO DO

The resort had so much to do that I’m sure we missed half of the activities! Each day, there was a board that listed what was going at what time. There’s no way we could have done everything that was offered but it was nice to have so many options

Of course, there were nightly shows in the big, open-aired theater. The entertainment was actually impressive. Many of the resorts that I’ve been to have shows but they are super cheesy and plain old bad! But not at The Barcelo Bavaro. We loved the Michael Jackson performance and the circus.

The disco opened at 11:00pm every night but we were usually ready for sleep at this hour. I know, we are lame. The mixture of sun and mojitos really got to us, ya know? There was also a casino, sports bar, golf course, mini golf course, bowling alley, and water park on the resort!

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

[ shop: off the shoulder bikini top or similar, cheaper one here | high cut bottoms ]

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

[ shop: tropical satin jumpsuit with lace-up front ]

Pittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta CanaPittsburgh Life & Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, recaps and reviews her trip to The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort in Punta Cana

[ shop: rose gold satin dress ]

Overall, we LOVED The Barcelo Bavaro Grand Resort and would recommend it to anyone. My mom is a travel agent and would loveeeee to help you book your next trip so be sure to contact her at kboron57@gmail.com (her name is Kathi and you can tell her you read my blog post!) Or you can always, at anytime, shoot me an email at jenna@balanceandchaos.com if you have any questions or comments. I love hearing from you guys!

Follow the resort on Instagram here (they are always uploading dreamyyyy IG stories)

Check out their website here.

BARCELO BAVARO RESORT 0 (9 of 9)

The Little Black Jumpsuit That’s Perfect For Every Summer Occasion

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos, wearing Raga The Molly Jumpsuit, Cape Robbin Cage sandals, & River Island aviatorsPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos, wearing Raga The Molly Jumpsuit, Cape Robbin Cage sandals, & River Island aviators Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos, wearing Raga The Molly Jumpsuit, Cape Robbin Cage sandals, & River Island aviators

photos: Lex King

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos, wearing Raga The Molly Jumpsuit, Cape Robbin Cage sandals, & River Island aviatorsRAGA JUMPSUIT | CAGE SANDALS | SILVER AVIATORS

This LBJ (little black jumpsuit) by Raga is perfect for any summer event. It’s flowy and comfortable with some extra *spice* in the back! I love how it’s completely open and ties up. But I must warn you — you will likely need someone to lace you up! Trying to do it yourself without getting tangled is nearly impossible!

I paired this jumpsuit with what I like to call my “Aladdin shoes”. Aren’t they cute?!

P.S. If you don’t follow me on Instagram, I posted how I do my makeup when I’m in a rush to my story this afternoon. Which is pretty much every day of my life. Be sure to let me know if you like seeing videos/tutorials like that! I’ll be going LIVE on either Instagram or Facebook this Friday at my microblading touch-up appointment with Domonique so stay tuneddddd! We will be answering all of your questions live and in action!

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Summer Citrus Rosé Sangria

Pittsburgh Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares a Summer Rosé Citrus Sangria cocktail recipe Pittsburgh Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares a Summer Rosé Citrus Sangria cocktail recipe Pittsburgh Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares a Summer Rosé Citrus Sangria cocktail recipe

Hi guys! It feels good to be back and in action blogging!

I have been slammed with all sorts of things to catch up on since I got back back from my trip to Punta Cana so that’s why I’ve been M.I.A.! I haven’t even had the chance to unpack yet (don’t judge). Maybe I’ll get to that today. But to keep it brief, our vacation was nothing short of AMAZING. I am so sad that it’s over but I can’t wait to share all of our pictures and resort details on B&C later this week. I hope you liked following along on Instagram!

Pittsburgh Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares a Summer Rosé Citrus Sangria cocktail recipePittsburgh Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares a Summer Rosé Citrus Sangria cocktail recipePittsburgh Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares a Summer Rosé Citrus Sangria cocktail recipe

I made this cocktail and 2 homemade pizzas for dinner last night and both really hit the spot. I’ll save my white pesto pizza recipe for another day. This pretty Summer sangria is just a little spin on your basic Rosé and super simple to make. I’m all about aesthetic, ya know? … so I love how these turned out! Just like my Boozy Pink Lemonade and 2-Ingredient Spiked Summer Seltzer, these are perfect for get-togethers, dinner parties, or even when you just want to get fancy with yourself.

INGREDIENTS

Rosé

lemon slices

orange slices

grapefruit slices

grapefruit sparkling water

Playlist: Vacay Mode

Pittsburgh Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos, shares her Spotify Playlist for vacation in Punta Cana

LACE-UP JUMPSUIT | PHOTOS: LEX KING

Happy Saturday, guys! I’m gonna make this one short and sweet. I’m headed to a wedding today and then off to Punta Cana with the boo early Sunday! Probably going to be buzzing off wine from the wedding for the flight but that’s what vacation is all about, right?!

I’m sharing the Spotify playlist that I created specifically for my trip to Punta Cana! It’s a melting pot of genres – rap, country, R&B, house… everything. Enjoy!

Be sure to follow my trip on Instagram and Facebook! I plan to do lots of live vids soooo stay tuned!

Keeping It Casual In Sneakers & Skirts

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, wearing Daydreamer LA "REBEL REBEL" tee, Tobi maxi skirt, and white Steve Madden sneakersPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, wearing Daydreamer LA "REBEL REBEL" tee, Tobi maxi skirt, and white Steve Madden sneakersPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, wearing Daydreamer LA "REBEL REBEL" tee, Tobi maxi skirt, and white Steve Madden sneakers

[ photos: Lex King ]

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, wearing Daydreamer LA "REBEL REBEL" tee, Tobi maxi skirt, and white Steve Madden sneakersREBEL REBEL TEE | TOBI MAXI SKIRT | ASOS DOUBLE WRAP STUDDED BELT | STEVE MADDEN WHITE SNEAKERS | SUNGLASSES

Throwing on a pair of plain white sneakers with a maxi skirt is such an easy, but cute daytime look. This simple black high-slit maxi skirt literally goes with anything and everything. I’ve been wearing it a lot lately with tucked in graphic t-shirts and layered necklaces. If you missed my post on graphic tees (that AREN’T cheesy or tacky), you can check that out here!

Fun fact: my head is cut off in 90% of these pictures because it started raining during my shoot so, naturally, I looked like a drown rat. Fun times!

You can find tons of cute skirts and dresses on tobi.com so be sure to head there after this post!

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4 Tips to Help You Stop Comparing + Why Collaboration Has More Value Than Competition

Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares Why Collaboration is Greater Than Competition + 4 Tips to Help You Stop Comparing -- Girl Power Tee by The Style Club LA Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares Why Collaboration is Greater Than Competition + 4 Tips to Help You Stop Comparing -- Girl Power Tee by The Style Club LA

Be the hustler, the well-wisher, the go-getter“.

Easier said than done, right?

In a world where everyone and their mother has some sort of side-hustle or creative outlet, the competition is literally EVERYWHERE. It’s hard not to compare or judge when you’re playing for the same prize.

I’ve been holding off on writing this post for a while now. I’ve actually had these pictures tucked away in a folder on my computer desktop for weeks now because I needed to be “in the mood” to talk about something like this.

Today I am in the mood. I just got back from a shoot with one of my favorite photographers, Lex King, and I’m ready to share my thoughts. Every time I shoot, I get a little extra boost of motivation and the thoughts seem to start flowing. Collaborating with photographers, like my girls Lex and Sasha, who are so passionate about what they do, can be really inspirational. It’s so important to surround yourself with people who have like-minded attitudes.

So why am I sharing this blog post? I’m sharing this blog post because I want to remind bloggers, creatives, influencers, girls, and heck — MYSELF… that “collaborating” has MUCH more value than competing or feeling jealous.

The blogging world is generally extremely positive, supportive, and understanding. We are kind of like a little tribe. We have Facebook threads and Instagram groups to unite us. We basically communicate everyday without ever meeting face to face. However, this does not stop me from comparing. I will speak for myself but I think many of you can relate to this (blogger or not).

Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares Why Collaboration is Greater Than Competition + 4 Tips to Help You Stop Comparing -- Girl Power Tee by The Style Club LA

[ Girl Power T-Shirt ]

Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares Why Collaboration is Greater Than Competition + 4 Tips to Help You Stop Comparing -- Girl Power Tee by The Style Club LA

[ photos: Lex King ]

What I’ve found in my 3+ years of blogging and in my 26 (almost 27) years of life is that comparison is worthless. Comparison is a debbie-downer. Comparison can be rough on the self-esteem.

BUT — it’s human nature so that’s a hard beast to kill.

Here’s how I stop comparison from getting the best of me:

1. Collaborate. Collaborating is so important. I found this quote on Pinterest and it couldn’t be more true: “Your doom will always be of your own making. Your success, if any, will have multiple authors. Collaborate now“. So much YESSSS! Plus, you never know what lessons you could learn or what doors could open from pursuing a collaboration opportunity.

2. Focus on your own sh*t. It’s easy to get caught up in comparing your success to someone else’s success. No two people will ever walk the same path of life and even if they did, it’d still be different! I find that I am most inspired, positive, and clear-minded when I focus solely on where I’M at in MY life rather than studying how someone else got to the top. Try it!

3. Stop the cyber stalking & stop thinking Instagram is real life. LOL. So c’mon — we all have done this! And I’m listing this as #3 because it can seriously be unhealthy. Instagram’s search history log makes it so easy to just keep clicking back to X, Y, and Z’s page. It’s fun to keep tabs on people’s “seemingly” (KEY WORD) perfect lives but if it’s making you feel bad about your own life then that’s when it has to stop. It’s so important to remember that Instagram is NOT REAL LIFE. While I strive to make my feed as aesthetically appealing as possible for my followers, I’ll be the first to admit that most of my photos are thought out, planned, staged, and filtered. It may be true that I just had lunch at a trendy taqueria, but those plates, drinks, and apps did NOT come perfectly arranged, untouched, and unfiltered. Oh… and I usually take 25 selfies before I get a good one… and even the good one gets a little TLC on an editing platform before I hit “post”. What I’m saying is — keep it in perspective.

4. Support. You will not lose anything by supporting someone else. Congratulating or showing love isn’t going to alter your own personal success destinyWhen you support someone else, it makes you feel good rather than jealous!

The comparison game is definitely something that I will continue to work on but these tips help to keep me in check, ya know? It’s a toughy! Let me know your thoughts/tips/stories below… I want to know if you guys can relate to this!

Talk to you guys soon. Be on the lookout for some cute new summer styles!

 

6 New Beauty Finds That I’ll Definitely Buy Again

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares 6 of her favorite beauty finds this May.

I have some major new beauty crushes this month that I’ve got to share with you guys! All of them are new to my beauty routine but I’ll definitely be re-purchasing them all!

1. DRYBAR WHIPPED DRY SHAMPOO FOAM

This stuff is literal MAGIC in a can. If you think regular dry shampoo is good, think again! The foam doesn’t leave any grit or residue in your hair and it definitely doesn’t leave you looking like a grandma with white roots. Oh and it smells so ridiculous — think: amber, coconut, and vanilla! Yum. Even my boyfriend complimented the scent…Maybe he’ll stop making fun of me for not washing my hair for 5+ days.

2. TULA EXFOLIATING TREATMENT MASK

More skincare recommendations for you guys! TULA’s line of products are made with probiotics and different superfoods… cool, huh? The probiotics apparently protect the skin from “bad” bacteria and help to balance the skin. This particular exfoliating mask has something called bentonite clay which helps to pull out impurities. It also has turmeric root, vitamin E, and Camellia seed oil which are good for inflammation and anti-aging.

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares 6 of her favorite beauty finds this May.Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares 6 of her favorite beauty finds this May.

3. MAC LIGHTFUL TINTED CREAMB

Before finding this product, I had used MAC Face & Body for years. I wanted a little more coverage than what that had to offer so I made the change to the tinted cream. And I love it! It’s not cakey or greasy and it has SPF 30!

4. LIPSENSE

Alright, guys…Lipsense is legit! If you haven’t heard or read about it yet, Lipsense is a long-lasting liquid lipstick that is waterproof, kiss proof, and smear proof. And IT REALLY IS. If you missed my Instagram video of me applying it for the first time, you can watch that here. I have the colors Pink Champagne (which is a day-time pink) and Bella (which is just a little darker) for reference. My cousin, Amanda, is a distributer and has insider details with tons of pictures and customer testimonials on her Facebook group. Be sure to follow it to get your hands on some Lipsense!

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares 6 of her favorite beauty finds this May.

5. LUSH COSMETICS BODY CONDITIONER

I love to use Lush’s body conditioner all over but especially on my neck and chest area. It gives my neck and chest a healthy, silky, moisturized glow beneath my foundation. Plus the

6. IT COSMETICS BYE BYE UNDER EYE ILLUMINATION CONCELER

I can thank you guys for this beauty find! I reached out to my Instagram followers a few weeks ago for recommendations on under eye concealers and tons of you got back to me with Bye Bye Under Eye by It Cosmetics. And I am such a fan now, too! I didn’t know if I’d like the illumination or not but it’s perfect. It covers my dark circles better than any other product that I’ve tried and it highlights without looking like a raccoon. WILL buy again!

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance and Chaos, shares 6 of her favorite beauty finds this May.

Boho Summer in Raga

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall BagPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall Bag

I’m definitely a sucker for anything oversized that can also be layered so I am all about this robe! How pretty is this maxi-length Navajo Caftan from Raga? I looooove that it’s floor-length. If it weren’t so long, it wouldn’t make such a statement. I’m excited to style it throughout the remainder of spring and into warmer summer months. I’d be lying if I didn’t already plan to wear this as a coverup with my new white one piece in Punta Cana this June.

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall BagPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall BagPittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall Bag

[ photos: Sasha Danielle ]

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall Bag

[ RARE candid of me laughing — LOL! ]

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall Bag Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares this boho look for Summer 2017 wearing Raga Navajo Caftan and Closet Access Mini Kendall Bag

SHOP RAGA NAVAJO CAFTAN | CLOSET ACCESS CROSSBODY BAG | TOPSHOP HIGH WAIST JEANS | BLACK POINTED BOOTIES | WHITE T-SHIRT | RAYBAN AVIATORS

If you guys don’t know about my relationship with the jeans pictured above, then you probably haven’t been following B&C for very long. I have those Topshop high waist pants in 3 different colors and if I could get my hands on another color, I would. Check them out in this old post and this old post.

…And… as a little sneaky heads up — I’ll be hosting an Instagram giveaway with Closet Access in the veryyyy near future so be sure to follow along on IG to enter to win (username: @jennaboron)!

My Favorite Graphic Tees That Aren’t Tacky

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style Blogger, Jenna Boron, shares her favorite graphic tees and band t-shirts that aren't super cheesy!

[ cage sandals | destroyed denim long shorts | graphic t-shirt dress ]

Graphic tees are tough. I mean, please raise your hand if you can’t stand the ones that read “GOOD VIBES ONLY” or “CARPE DIEM” in bold lettering or something of that nature. I know you know what I’m talking about! I definitely am guilty of having stacks on stacks of these cheesy kinds of t-shirts when I was growing up. Anyway — to each their own but that just isn’t my personal style. Basically what I’m saying is that if I’m going for the casual-cute-relaxed-tee-look, I don’t really want people to stop to READ my chest. Get me?

When I see a good band tee in stores, I always snag it because they are so far and few. I rounded up a bunch of my favorite graphic tees below for you guys!

SHOP MY FAVORITE GRAPHIC & BAND TEES 

Insta Round-Up

Pittsburgh Life & Personal Style blogger, Jenna Boron of Balance & Chaos, highlights 4 of her most popular Instagram photos.

Hey, hey!

Just a quick Instagram round-up for you guys on this lovely Monday night.

Tile Print Kimono – Kimono’s are all the rage right now. I wore this tile print cape with a pair of denim shorts for drinks yesterday afternoon with my girlfriend. I also have this one on standby ready to wear on my tropical vacation next month!

Adidas NMDs – I STILL love these nude sneaks to wear for my on-the-go days.

NEVER Hoodie – I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again… If you don’t shop the men’s department, then you’re probably (definitely) missing out! I actually just hit up the Forever 21 men’s section today! I ordered this one in an XS for size reference.

Adidas Drop Crotch Joggers – Love these joggers so much for a casual, Sporty Spice look. I like to wear them with these all white tennis. Must I mention these pants are veryyyy comfortable! True to size.