Sometimes you just need to take a break, STOP, turn your face towards the sun and breathe. Just BREATHE. This is what I started to do (too late, but better late than never) when I started having severe stomach problems due to stress. Now, when I have the busiest day, I break it down in chunks mentally and I take many small 5-10 minutes breaks to let myself calm down, breathe and re-center myself to be able to do all I need to do despite continuous lack of sleep (toddler mama reality).

THERE IS AN APP FOR THAT - CALM

Although I previously shared my meditation, calming methods I don't think it hurts to repeat it. I use CALM mobile app for guided breathing technique and guided meditation for almost a year now and it really helps me fall asleep easier and calm my nerves because of which I have fewer stomach pains as well. It takes very little time but it makes a significant change to how I feel during the day.



WORK IT OUT

Other than breathing/meditating, sitting outside on the suquietlyly for just a few minutes what really helps me center and calm (mind and body) is a regular work out. My standard workout which I do in average 3-5x per week on a good week or 1-2x on a buisy weeek contains of 30 minute running pace 10ish which makes out to be a good 5-6 km run + weight training for core, back, legs and gluts and ab circuit. Work out takes lots of negative energy and stress out and afterwards your legs might be tired but your mind is fresh and your adrenaline up and running. I am a firm believer that work out contributes not only to your physical but also mental health tremendously so if you are a buisy career women or a buisy mom, consider taking some 'me' time in the gym rather then having any beauty treatment or cafe, I promise it will be more rewarding, especially longterm.




THAT'S A WRAP #OOTD

My go-to brands for this #ootd are my usual suspects - Free People mini-wrap floral dress made out of cotton-linen material, cool and super soft, perfect for Summer. The same as back when I was living in New York, today when I am a busy mom I carry 2 pairs of shoes with me at all times as sometimes after work meeting I run to pick up my daughter from nursery and take her to park so I go from pumps to sneakers within few hours. I love wearing Spanish made fashion so I opted for Uterque white sneakers and pumps which both go great with the floral wrap dress. My accessory of choice for this outfit was my 'stressed but well dressed' leather Zara clutch.




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One of my favorite thing about living in Spain is how it spoiled us with delicious fresh market produce all year around. Of course, there is always a seasonal fruit like, in any other country, however gentle Mediterranean climate allows for locally produced oranges, bananas, berries and similar in my country (Croatia) exotic fruits are all year around treat.


TRAVELING MARKET

Thursday afternoons are for me always reserved for the local farmers market 'Mercat de la Terra'. In Barcelona, local producers of honey, meat, cheeses, bread and produce have a small market in front of the neighborhood park so each day of the week a different neighborhood is visited by this traveling farmer's market.


TOP 5 MARKETS IN BARCELONA 

Even if you are visiting Barcelona as a tourist, you will surely enjoy experiencing, taking photos and sampling local but also imported exotic fruit, fruit juices, tasty Spanish cheeses, jamon /prosciutto and local pastries. Bigger, more touristy markets tend to be more expensive. I definitely recommend local, small park markets for all who are staying in Barcelona for a longer period.

Here are my favorites:

1. Mercat de la Boqueria. The biggest and most colorful market in Barcelona. The prices are truly fair in comparison to quality, variety, and quantity you get. When I first visited Barcelona I got a bunch of exotic spices as souvenirs for my family and friends. The only watch out I would mention is that La Boqueria is closed on Sunday's as many other places in Barcelona.


2. Mercat de Santa Caterina. The second oldest market in the city, also one of city locations tourist like to visit for it's architecture, history, energy and of course fabulous produce. It is certainly less buisy then La Boqueria but absolutely worth the visit, don't go on Sunday, it's closed as well :)

3. Mercat de Galvany. This is my neighorhood market, it is a bit pricy but offers great product variety. The market features gorgeous architecture, resembeling a church more then a market entrance from outside. There is a cafe there as well to take a quick espresso break after your weekend produce shopping trip.

4. Mercat de Sant Andreu. This market is smaller then previous three but it's very cozy and less crowded with small stalls, shops, bakeries and bars where you can grab a drink and tapas produced from fresh local ingredients. I can recommend Rabasseda restaurant where I had drink and tapas with my mom when she first visited.

5. Mercat de Sants. Like other Barcelona markets Sants Market offers stunning architecture and on top of wide variaty of fresh produce you can also buy a lot of ready to eat meals. My very favorites are empanadas with goat cheese and caramelized onions. 




MARKET OOTD

We haven't shot this look inside of the markets as the light is rather dim and there are always to many people. For my market #ootd I choose red and white polka dot frill dress with strah hat and my super comfortable Uterque sandals from last season. The leather net bag is the same one I had in Tangerine post but here I use it as a market bag.



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 Wearing leopard print can be a slippery slope. You can go all out and just wear it like Patsy from the Absolutely Fabulous TV show. Alternatively, you could just go boring old red lipstic, leopard print piece combined with black accessory.

SCANDINAVIAN LEOPARD PRINT #OOTD

On the other hand, you can just go neutral or invent your own 'leopard print look' like I tried with this 'Scandinavian leopard' kind of outfit where I highlighted Zara's midi leopard print dress with white accessory.

When I think of Scandinavian style (be it apartment furnishing or fashion) I think of clean lines, lots of white and very simple cuts. Obviously, leopard print is all but clean and simple, but, when it's photographed with white accessory and over clean background it does give a Scandinavian vibe.




 WHITE ACCESSORY

When it comes to accessory, I usually shop independent designers but since I live in Barcelona I often opt out for 'made in Spain' pieces like those from Uterque brand. The white leather pumps with point toe and V cleavage are from Uterque (a bit hard to break in but super comfortable on strap end). White earrings are from Violeta by Mango. If I wear a purse with this look it's usually YSL mini or a (less practical) white leather clutch with no strap.





Do you ever wear leopard and if you do, how do you style  it? :)

p.s. Looking for more inspiration.

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Ever since I transitioned to work from the fashion industry to more corporate environment I started consciously changing my workwear looks to better fit the company I was representing while still keeping details which allowed me to express my personality. I certainly went down with heel sizes and more classic with my outfit choices by adding more structured pieces and keeping the skirt and dress length mostly up to the knee. 

FROM CORPORATE TO HOME OFFICE

On the other hand, in last 5 years, I went from the corporate position with quite a lot of travels to work from home office for myself with a couple of out of office meeting a week. This was yet another transition when it comes to my personal workwear style. 

No, I am never wearing pajamas or sweatpants while working in a home office, I swore to myself I will get up and get myself dressed and head to toe ready to go to work (into the next room) and keep myself on my part-time work from home schedule and so far, 5 years later, I am keeping this promise to myself almost every workday (with an exception of days I start of with a trip to the gym). 


FLORALS & PASTELS

During last 3 years, after delivering my daughter, my clothing size kept changing which was also one of the things I kept in mind while shopping for clothes. However, shades and patterns remained the same. I continue to go for long or midi dresses with emphasized waist (which my figure can handle as I am quite tall) like this midi blue linen wrap dress with shirt collar, button fastening and a wrap belt which nicely rounds the figure.

For the business meetings, I wear this dress with blush pink Zara jacket with midi sleeves and decorative pearl buttons to make the look more formal.



ACCESSORIES TO SHOW PERSONALITY

I usually use accessories to show off my personal style and add pops of color to more plain colored looks. For this outfit I choose a colorful knot headscarf from Violeta by Mango, chandelier earrings from Violeta by Mango, blush pink velvet chunky sandals with sparkly heel by & Other Stories and a hat backpack by Croatian brand Mala Radnja Dizajna which never goes unnoticed wherever I go.




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I have to say when I shop for clothing rarely do I go for anything orange or let alone tangerine. That was the case with this adorable, romantic tie shoulder tangerine dress I ordered from the Outnet thinking it was actually red. However, when putting the full outfit together with Ganni bow tie kitten heel pumps and straw hat it all came together quite nicely. 

BOW TIE SHOES

Since I became a mom I wear much lower heels and more comfortable shoes in general, this does not mean I wear sneakers all day. I try not to compromise on style and elegance thus it took me a while to find a nice pair of V cleavage suede, red kitten heel shoes which are comfortable despite the pointy toe. I opted for Ganni brand and it did not disappoint, these were my only Spring/Summer new shoes which did not leave me with painful blisters. Yay to that! 


LEATHER NET BAG

In our house, we eat and buy fresh fruit daily since I am trying super hard to avoid buying anything in or with plastic this elegant leather net bag is super useful for daily fruit shopping. After I pick up Anabela from school I stop by local fruit market and just pop different fruit into my leather bag and hand it to cashier lady to weigh it separately without using a separate plastic bag for each piece of fruit. This makes for an elegant and environmentally friendly way to shop and carry fruit. I got this reusable and chic leather net bag from Violeta (plus size Mango brand).



THE HAT

My hat collection is a straw hat richer this week. I got this fab hat from Asos for very little money and it has a useful rubber band on the inside which helps adjust the hat size and prevent it to fly of and you running after it like a lunatic (which is what happens to me often).

Quick tip - when you travel do not pack your hat in the suitcase (unless it's semi full) as it almost always gets ruined. Store the hat filled with tissue paper and when traveling take it with you as a carry-on or pack it in a special hat suitcase.





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