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Whether you are an artist or parent, college student or in business, coffee is the perfect pairing of innovation and success.

Lofty Coffee Co.
Location: Encinitas
This haven is only a stone’s throw away from the secluded Moonlight Beach of Encinitas.

Customer Service: From the moment you enter this quaint shop, you feel a part of something extraordinary. The baristas shout greetings and farewells, which creates a friendly vibe.
Quality Food: The Aztec mocha is the perfect blend of spice and chocolate. Every sip revives your senses.

Limited Options: This is only a con due to their

Donut Bar
Location: Downtown San Diego


Cafe Bassam
Location: Banker’s Hill (Hillcrest/San Diego)


Dark Horse
Location: Normal Heights (San Diego)


Coffee & Tea Collective
Location: San Diego


Claire de Lune
Location: North Park (San Diego)


Location: Mira Mesa


Barnes and Noble
Location: Mira Mesa


Photo Credit: http://thegreyconcept.tumblr.com/post/59399716307

Autumn: A Season of New Beginnings


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With the month of August almost gone, the anticipation for autumn is increasing. Boots and scarves, cooler temperatures and holidays, these long-awaited features fuel the excitement for a new season. Out of the four, autumn is by far, my favorite. The changing leaves and chilly weather signify childhood memories of holidays and joy.


I fondly look back on the times when I purchased new school supplies. During my childhood, our family lived a frugal lifestyle. Shopping was not a common ordeal. Thus, when the beginning of school approached, I was eager to shop; even for school supplies.


Costumes and presents await me in the month of October. Having your birthday a week prior to Halloween certainly has its advantages. Gifts and candy: what more could a kid ask for? Moreover, Nightmare before Christmas (FAVORITE MOVIE EVER) is in full swing in Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion ride. This of course is even more reason to love the month of October.


Races and thanksgiving, the sharing of family recipes and shopping are some of the anticipated highlights in the month of November. An often forgotten month, due to the hype of Christmas, November is a notable time of thankfulness. Without gratitude, life would be a dull existence, void of joy and appreciation.

1601047_10203615281769691_1019722936_nDecember will forever stand as my favorite month of the year. A month of snow (or rain, if you live in California) and Christmas, festivities and traditions, holds a greater significance to my husband and me. This year will celebrate our one year anniversary. I look forward to many more years with my companion and love.


Happy Autumn!

Madam F.


Photo Credit: http://sarsrose.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/autumn-leaves/

Photo Credit: http://sofawned.com/2013/09/dont-you-love-new-york-in-the-fall.html

Photo Credit: http://vinylmationkingdom.com/2013/12/16/infinity-blue-sky-nightmare-christmas/

Photo Credit: https://somiddlechild.wordpress.com/category/talkies/page/3/

When Fashion sends You Running for Cover: August Beauty Month


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Fashion has experienced its difficulties in the minds of designers and trendsetters. A vortex of politics and historic events, entrepreneurs and fond musings of the past has created the fashion industry we see today.

Despite good intentions, fashion blunders are occurring in the past and present. Even though a fad existed in popularity ten years prior, does not mean it works today. 

Below are five fashion disasters that have occurred in the last forty years.

Spice Girls *ahem*…fashion.



The Spice Girls and others from the 90’s introduced ripped jeans and the grunge look. Although this decade inspired some creative attire, leading to the revival of 80’s fashion, some of these trends should die. You cannot expect to be taken seriously in a style that is labeled “grunge”.

The Scrunchie.



A hideous concoction of the 80’s that makes any individual appears to be five years old. Colorless (black, blonde or brown) hair ties and bobby pins are the way to go. Regardless of the scrunchie making a comeback, it needs to be retired once and for all

The Mullet.



A haircut that resembles a porcupine should not be a fashion choice. As with the animal, the individual must step away from this blunder before they suffer the consequences of embarrassment.

Who wears Short Shorts?



The high-waisted shorts of the 80’s are returning in controversial forms. Bearing a resemblance to daisy dukes, this clothing item is a disgusting view of your derriere to many unsuspecting individuals.

The Questionable Attire.



The controversial dress worn by Rihanna at the CFDA Fashion Awards mirrors the risqué mindset of the 21st centuryShe and others have made claims to expressing creativity and wanting to mirror a past fashion. However, this plea is crossing the line from what is appropriate to inappropriate.


Madam F.

Spice Girls Photo Credit: http://yourlifeafter25.com/2012/06/14/top-10-worst-fashion-trends-of-all-time/

The Scrunchie Photo Credit: http://www.ninareschovsky.com/london-style-watch-the-scrunchy/

The Mullet Photo Credit: http://www.sodahead.com/living/what-do-you-think-were-some-terrible-fashion-trends/question-1711655/

Short Shorts Photo Credit: http://stephaniereiner.blogspot.com/2013/09/5-fashion-trends-i-cant-get-on-board.html

Rihanna Sheer Dress Photo Credit: http://fashionsnoops360.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Rihanna.jpg

Fearless in a Pop of Color: August Beauty Month


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We have all been there: standing in front of the mirror, hair pulled back into a topknot, with a perfectly arranged outfit. However, there seems to be something missing. You feel a need to “get your hands dirty” in a way, by messing up the completion of the outfit. Do not ignore that emotion; embrace it.

Don yourself with color! One that will not grab attention, but invite observation and speculation from the passersby. Be fearless in this endeavor for some may not receive your expression of self. As in life, where the hurdles occur, the wearer must be willing to put in the effort to make the details work. 

Color is an expression of emotion and depth. One that will reveal your vulnerability and versatile personality. Be courageous in thinking outside of the norm and embody your values and creativity.

Stand fearless in a pop of color in a graying world.


Madam F.

Photo Credit: http://lineday.co/coeur-de-pirate-true-colors-lyrics-translation/

Ransom at the Ritz: Update


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Be sure to keep an eye out for Rowena and the others in my upcoming sequel, titled The Closing Curtain.

Ten years have passed, since Rowe left Jace on the rooftop. She has rocketed to fame as the renown stage actress, Snow. Living under the guise of a new name and home in Los Angeles, life with Gray has never been better. However, Rowe’s attempt to escape her skeletons soon becomes tricky when events from the past begin to unfold. In these moments, she is faced with the bitterness and unforgiving nature held by her past transgressions.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahHardy. All Rights Reserved.

Ransom at the Ritz: Chapter 11


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Rowe kneed Jace in the groin. The latter fell to his knees with a groan. Rowe aimed the gun at Jace’s head. “I am done with your lies.” His face, twisted in pain, with a hint of a sneer. “You are done, when I say you are”, Jace said in a strained voice. He motioned to Dahlia, who stood by, now holding her gun at her side. She neither moved nor spoke. Dahlia was looking at Rowe in a strange way. Was it admiration? Jace looked at Dahlia in exasperation. “Take Rowena’s gun!” Dahlia shook her head. “No, Jace. Rowe is right. Enough lies.” She pointed her gun at Jace.

“Dahlia have you lost your mind?” London questioned. “Not now London. Jace deserves this”, Dahlia answered. London eyed her sister for a moment. She nodded in agreement.

Jace looked alarmed. “What do you think you’re doing?” he demanded. He went to stand up; however, Dahlia pushed the gun into his forehead. “Don’t move”, she warned. Jace looked around the group. Aspen remained at the roof ledge. Gray stood a few feet behind Jace. Neither appeared willing to help.

Dahlia’s change of heart surprised Rowe. She opened her mouth to voice this surprise. However, Dahlia cut her off, “You need to get out of here”, Dahlia advised. “No time for questions. Just know this; I am sorry for Elle’s death. She did not deserve to die.” Rowe nodded. “And I apologize for allowing this creature to destroy our friendship”, Rowe said.

“I am coming with you this time”, Gray urged. “I should have never consented to Jace’s demands of keeping us apart.” Gray took Rowe’s hand and led her toward the rooftop door. Rowe looked over her shoulder at Gavin’s body. “I am sorry”, Rowe whispered to him.

“Running again. Rowena, I will find you”, Jace threatened. She considered Jace. “I count on it. Yet this time, I am not running in fear. I am escaping you and your games.”

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahHardy. All Rights Reserved.

The Many Uses of Coconut Oil: August Beauty Month


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The craze of Coconut Oil has swept through the masses of men and women. Its benefits have been tested and proven by many individuals in a variety of settings. Coconut Oil surpasses other fads of past eras.

To name a few, Coconut Oil benefits the following areas:

  1. Hair
    1. Thoroughly conditions the hair strands. Unlike hair products, Coconut Oil stays in the hair longer, due to its chemical make-up.
  2. Skin
    1. Hydrates and repairs damaged and dry skin. This product also offers a pleasant scent.
  3. Cuticles
    1. Softens cracked cuticles, exceeding a large quantity of lotions and creams.
  4. Face
    1. In its virgin form (unrefined, not chemically altered), Coconut Oil is an excellent moisturizer.
  5. Teeth Pulling
    1. Improves gum health.
  6. Cooking
    1. A healthier replacement in cooking, when in its virgin form.
  7. Lips
    1. Surpasses the drying formula of most chap sticks.
  8. Fight against illness
    1. Assists in creating an immunity against disease.
  9. Lowers fat
    1. Benefits in fat loss in difficult and harmful areas of the body.

The following links are excellent sources on the benefits of coconut oil:

  1. http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/surprising-health-benefits-coconut-oil
  2. http://www.meghantelpner.com/blog/rub-on-a-little-oil-coconut-oil/
  3. http://www.lucybee.co/blog/news/coconut-oil-definitive-guide/
  4. http://www.pilatesfornewmothers.com/2013/01/7-reasons-coconut-oil-should-be-your-new-skin-moisturizer/
  5. http://wellnessmama.com/5734/101-uses-for-coconut-oil/


Madam F.

Photo Credit: http://coconut-oil-pulling.net/

The Little Black Dress: August Beauty Month


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The Little Black Dress is a statement of versatility and beauty. An icon duly named “Chanel’s Ford” was introduced in 1926 by the fashion empress herself, Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel. Coco transformed the mourning tone of black to a suitable item for any occasion. 


Annex - Hepburn, Audrey (Breakfast at Tiffany's)_21


Audrey Hepburn was a vision of elegance in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. The notorious black dress and pearls are seen in several scenes, held on different occasions and audiences. This dynamic duo of fashion set a timeless fashion statement.

A Splash of Color


Versatility is by far the best feature of the black dress. This piece of clothing pairs well with turquoise and pink, yellow and red, to name a few. Unlike any other clothing item, the black dress is unlimited in its options of pairings and looks. 

Beach Casual


Nothing says beach chic like a big, floppy hat and Hollywood-esque sunglasses. A black dress may seem ridiculous under the sun; however, the effect will be opposite. The wearer will stand out in this classic style.

Simple Elegance


The Black Dress will look lovely solo or worn with accessories. Take a leaf out of Chanel’s book and escape the social norm of comfort and ease. Be bold in this garment of femininity and charm. 

Madam F.

Coco Chanel & Audrey Hepburn Credit: https://readtapestry.com/s/RkOvEDQVc/

Audrey Hepburn Credit: http://tatianalensky.blogspot.com/2012/01/black-dress-and-independence-all-about.html

A Splash of Color Credit: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/287948969897521348/

Beach Casual Credit: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/184436547215204724/

Simple Elegance Credit: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/28006828907879052/

Ransom at the Ritz: Chapter 10


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It was satisfying to see the reactions of the group. Dahlia and London were frozen. Their mouths formed into a perfect “O”. Aspen gripped Jace’s shoulder. The latter shook off his grasp. Gray gently nodded his head in amazement, a slight smile on his lips. Jace’s expression twisted into anger and surprise. Rowe was happy to see that her bold move caught Jace off guard. However, his usual smirk soon replaced his shock.

“You can’t do it Rowena. You are weak”, Jace challenged. Rowe opened her mouth to retaliate. However, a movement to her right distracted her. Gavin fell forward. His sprawled body twitched before her eyes. It was sickening. She had witnessed dead bodies in the past. However, Rowe had never seen the dying process. Blood pooled from Gavin’s side.

Rowe bit her lip. Her previous notion of using Gavin’s life for her own gain angered her. What had she become? He saved her life. Rowe owed Gavin hers. She held Jace’s gaze. “Jace, he’s dying”, Rowe stated. His expression faltered. “Let us end this. Gavin’s life is worth more than your games and this”, she motioned between the two of them. Jace eyed her critically. Neither speaking nor moving.

She knelt beside Gavin. “Gavin”, Rowe whispered. He did not answer. She tried to roll him over. However, he was too heavy.

London knelt down, opposite Rowe. Rowe aimed her gun at London. “It’s alright”, London assured. “I want to help.” Both women rolled Gavin over. A dark, red stain colored his right side. London covered her mouth. “He’s not going to die, is he”, London asked. Tears fell down her face. “Gavin I’m sorry,” London cried. “When Gavin attacked me, I found his handgun. I had to defend myself. He was going to kill me”, London confessed.

“This is not your fault. It is Rowena’s”, Jace accused. He walked toward London and Rowe. Aspen stayed by the roof ledge. His back towards them shook with what Rowe assumed were sobs. Gray followed Jace at a distance.

Jace handed his gun to Dahlia. She trained it on Rowe. “All of these unnecessary deaths, Rowena. How awful you must feel”, Jace chided. He cupped his hand under her shoulder. Jace pulled her up to face him. “Enough darling. Before anyone else dies.”


Copyright © 2014 SarahHardy. All Rights Reserved.

10 Tips to Get Your Beauty Sleep: August Beauty Month


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Beauty sleep, an adage of old, upholds that when one receives the adequate amount of rest, one will increase in beauty. A simple action, publicized in media and literature, fitness and beauty gurus, is possible.  However, beauty sleep is difficult at times. Unsuspecting culprits parade around, making it impossible to sleep.

Follow these ten tips and you will be on your way to beauty sleep.

  1. Say No to that Midnight Snack
    1. Your entire body requires rest. Late night eating can overwork and upset your stomach. In addition, certain foods may cause nightmares. These unpleasant dreams hinder the sleeper from entering the necessary REM cycle.
  2. Free Yourself of Electronics
    1. Television and computers, phones and other electronics with bright screens will alert your mind for hours. Avoid these sneaky offenders up to three hours prior to bedtime.
  3. Exercise
    1. The intensity of your exercise routine should be dependent on the time of day you work out. Some individuals have trouble with sleep when they exercise at a high intensity, prior to bedtime. Light exercise may be the best option! It will make you tired enough to sleep without interruption.
  4. Healthy Eating
    1. A healthy diet affects EVERY area in your life. This of course includes your sleep. Poor diet leads to indigestion (and other issues).
  5. Wash your Face
    1. Removing the grime of the day will prep your face for restoration. Allow your pores to breathe. Your skin will thank you.
  6. Silk
    1. The tightly woven fibers of silk are an all-inclusive benefit to the sleeper. Its formula retains moisture in the skin, dispelling dry skin. Further, its slippery surface allows your hair to slide, lessening breakage and knots. Silk eye masks and silk pillowcases will be kind to your hair and face.
  7. Meditation
    1. Yoga offers a variety of poses that induce immediate relaxation and peace. YouTube, Google and Health magazines feature simple positions that will guide you toward beauty sleep.
  8. Non-active activities
    1. Reading and other activities that require nothing other than slight movement or thinking are perfect for relaxing your busy mind.
  9. Sleep in Darkness
    1. An environment, void of light will prime your mind and body for rest. If you cannot sleep in darkness, a nightlight should not disrupt your sleep.
  10. Overnight Spa Treatment
    1. Treat your cuticles and skin, feet and face to an overnight spa treatment. Disregard the fact that you might look frightening! Imagine how lovely you will feel and look after beauty sleep.

Madam F.


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