Snorkeling in Iceland? Yup, you heard that right!

My second trip to Iceland was a quick 24 hour layover so I wanted to have a set plan of what to do with my time there. I already did the main touristy things on my first trip there like Black Sand Beach, exploring downtown Reykavik and the Golden Circle so I wanted to try so something new. This trip was also different in the sense that I was actually not traveling with my son, which is rare, so it allowed me to have more options on what we could do since there are certain things that are not toddler/kid friendly… like Snorkeling Silfra!

Silfra is one of the top dive sites in the world and situated in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Thingvellir, only about 30 miles from Reykjavik. Silfra is a freshwater fissure about 200 feet deep, where you can almost see end to end as the water is so clear. It’s also one of the only places where you can dive or float between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates, which are gradually drifting farther apart.

I booked my tour with Adventure Vikings online through the site GetLocal. When we landed in Iceland we drove straight to Thingvellir to meet our guides. We were exhausted! Iceland is only a 6 hour flight from NJ – add in barely sleeping on the plane and that 5 hour time change and we were sleep deprived but nothing that touching that cold ice water, 35°F year round to be exact, couldn’t help.

While you can free dive in a wet suit, we decided to go with the dry suit. Click HERE to read about the difference between the two. The dry suit allows you to float on the surface but best of all, it keeps you dry & warm.

Snorkeling in Iceland turned out to be one of the most incredible experiences I have had while traveling. You quickly forget how cold it is outside when you stick your face in the water and the visibility seems endless with bright hues of blue and green surrounding you. Even though I was one of the first in our group to enter the water, somehow I was the last to reach the end. I was just in awe of the experience that I lost track of time and floated most of the way taking everything in. The water of Silfra is not only the clearest but the purest and that is why you are encouraged to take a sip while snorkeling. I did and it was so refreshing!

Snorkeling in Iceland is quite a unique experience… one I highly recommend.

With Christmas only a week away, I wanted to share some of my favorite things that I think would be perfect for the special lady in your life!

1. What’s better than beautiful flowers? …beautiful flowers that last 1+ years! MILA Maison Des Rose creates gorgeous arrangements of all sizes and colors (& price points!) and these bloooms not only smell incredible but they last so long. Why spend $100+ on roses that will last a week when you can get a bouquet that will stay beautiful for at least a year. This is the ultimate gift that keeps on giving.

2. If you have been following me for a while, then you know my love for IT Cosmetics. This new limited edition bush set includes your 5 essential full-size, ultra-plush brushes for your face and eyes—plus a bonus travel case that carries them in style!

3. I’m a sucker for gorgeous lippie sets. This limited-edition wardrobe of five mini ModernMatte Powder Lipsticks, from Shiseido, comes housed in a deluxe container for the holidays. This creamy, non-drying formula transforms into a weightless powder that wraps lips in velvety, matte pigment. Perfect set for the beauty lover in your life.

4. Thoughtfully is one of my favorite sites to pick up gifts on! This gift set includes 7 deliciously sweet champagne toppers to add a fun twist to everyone’s favorite bubbly beverage. Sunday brunch, Saturday night, Wednesday afternoon? Any time is a great time to pop champagne!

5. I have featured a Peter Thomas Roth set on the last 3 years of gift guides – that’s because they make some of the best skincare products. Multi-mask on the go with the Insta-Mask Kit, featuring three travel sizes of your favorite Peter Thomas Roth masks!

6. For this festive season, Amo Ferragamo sparkles with a ‘shiny black&gold’ dress code inspired by the most glamorous outfit of the year, made of luxurious studs. Inside, the iconic floral oriental fragrance eau de parfum.

7. I love a classic but fun beauty set and Too Faced makes some of the best! While you can’t go wrong by gifting any of there products, this Tutti Frutti Christmas Fruit Cake Kit is a winner for me. The perfect Tutti Frutti Christmas collection of deluxe Juicy Fruits Lip Glaze, Fresh Squeezed Highlighting Drops, and Pineapple Paradise Strobing Bronzer Highlighting Duo all in an exclusive fruit cake makeup bag!

8. I’m a sucker for subscription boxes. What I love about Box of Style is that it truly is the one subscription box that WOWs every time. Coveted seasonal finds by Rachel Zoe, this is the the ultimate luxury fashion and beauty subscription delivered four times per year. A one time purchase or a year subscription – either will be a hit this holiday season. Click HERE to get more information on the subscription and use promo code: PEARLS15 for $15 off!

What do you get the guy in your life that has it all?

Here are a few items that are sure to be a hit this holiday season!

 

1. Do you have a Fisherman in your life? Lucky Tackle Box is the premier monthly subscription box in fishing. For one low monthly fee, Lucky Tackle Box will ship a box jam-packed full of the best new lures and baits every month! You can do a month subscription or pre-purchase a 3, 6 or 12 month package.

2. A pair of classic shades will always be a perfect gift in my opinion. The Ray-Ban Wayfarer is simply the most recognizable style in sunglasses. Always classic, always in style.

3. Some people might think socks are an odd gift, but I think they are actually a really great gift, especially when you can let the person you are gifting them to, show off their personality. This pre-assorted, 4-piece gift set, from FunSocks   makes the perfect present for the guy in your life that constantly lives in dress socks but wants to make his look a little more bold…. and bright!

4. Thoughtfully is one of my favorite sites for gift buying for every special occasion and holiday. This Branded & Grilled BBQ set is perfect for the BBQ King in your life. This gift set includes a stainless steel basting mug, silicone brush with wood handle, two delicious sauces, and a customizable branding iron to add the finishing touch to their perfectly charred creations.

5. Give the gift of scent this year dressed in a limited edition bottle. For this festive season, Uomo Salvatore Ferragamo seduces with a ‘shiny black&gold’ dress code inspired by the most magnetic outfit of the year, made of luxurious studs. Inside, the iconic oriental woody fragrance.

6. Do you have a GOT lover in the family? Diageo has officially unveiled the Game of Thrones Single Malt Scotch Whisky Collection. The collection is a set of eight whiskies intended to “honor the great houses and the Night’s Watch” with single malts from Cardhu, Clynelish, Dalwhinnie, Lagavulin, Oban, Royal Lochnagar, The Singleton, and Talisker. This would be a great gift for not only a Game of Thrones fan, but a Whisky lover.

If you didn’t know by now, Paris is one of my favorite cities in the world. When my mom retired, my sister and I figured it was the perfect time to have a girls trip to celebrate this milestone and we decided on Paris. This would be my moms 2nd trip there, my 3rd and my sisters very first time in this incredible city.

My first thought was how excited I was to be going on this adventure with them but my 2nd honestly was stressing out  a little about doing the same exact thing I had done in previous trips, over again.

Thankfully I came across this really unique tour of the city and knew I had to book it.

Cedric’s Paris offers many different tours around Paris while cruising in one of their old school CV2 cars OR a larger VW Kombi. While we would have fit very comfortably in a CV2 – I had my eye on the Volkswagen Kombi and decided to splurge and book that instead… after all, we were there to celebrate!

Cedric’s Paris offers many different types of tours but we went with the 2 hour Paris by Night Tour. There is something about Paris at night that is unforgettable and truly mesmerizing and by the end of the tour, I was so happy we decided on this one.

Chris was our driver and he picked us up promptly at 9:30pm. When you book a 2 hour tour, Cedric’s Paris will give you a complimentary additional 1/2 hour or a bottle of champagne. We decided to go with the extra time and brought along 2 bottles of our own champagne. He mapped out a personalized itinerary based on what we told him we wanted to see and it was perfect in every way. When you go to Paris you visually see these iconic monuments and grand buildings and while you are in awe – do you know the background history of what you are seeing? More than likely – No. Chris was full of knowledge and besides the incredible views, we learned so much about the city.


What I loved most about this tour was that it was perfect for someone who have never been to Paris AND the person who has been multiple times. All of the guides are born and raised Parisians and so they are very passionate at showing and teaching you all about their city. They know this city like the back of their hand and when you get dropped off at the end of the night – you will not be disappointed. This was the absolute BEST tour I have ever done in Paris and cannot recommend it enough.

Click HERE to check out all of the tours they offer and HERE to check out their cars.

If you book with them, let them know Shareen from Pearls & Paris sent you!

*Just a sidetone: This post isn’t sponsored nor do I or you get a discount if you book and say I sent you lol I just like companies to know when I post about my experience with them.

Books wash away from the soul the dust of everyday life.

This is one of my favorite quotes to describe why I have such a love for books and discovering new places where I can go to get lost in-between pages. When the Indigo team reached out to me, to see if I was interested in partnering for their new (& first!) location in the US, I was really intrigued to see what their company was all about. After checking out their site, I couldn’t have said YES to this opportunity quick enough. A new bookstore?! Yes – but they are so much more than that.

Launched in Canada in 1997, Indigo is the world’s first cultural department store—a physical and digital place inspired by, and led with, books, ideas, beautifully designed lifestyle & gifting products, and the creative people who help make it happen.

Indigo is the place to go to when you want to be inspired, unwind, and unplug

Stepping into their new store at the Mall at Short Hills I was immediately drawn in. First by how large the store is but then by how everything is coordinated into separate shops/sections that still intertwine your love for books as you walk through each one. As you go through each section, there is literally something for EVERYONE.

BookShop: As soon as you walk in the store you are surrounded by books of all genres! Indigo’s expansive selection and curation of books connects customers to authors and ideas—past and present—who inspire their reading life.

Home Beautiful: This was one of my favorite sections in the store. You can find anything from decorative pillows, baskets, candles and coffee table books – just to name a few.

Joy of the Table: Head to this section if you are looking for cook books, dinner & tableware, cutting boards, host gifts or if you need a little inspo on table decor and how to bring it all together.

A Room of Her Own: This section offers a selection of books on fashion and timeless style, fashion accessories, totes, journals, jewelry, candles and literature.

The Paper Shop: Cards, Journals, Notebooks, Home Office accessories – name it, this section has it.

IndigoKIDS: Being a mom, this section was a total highlight for me. Endless rows of children’s books, the most current & popular toys, a reading section, an activity section and so much more. I love when stores allow your children to be just that when shopping.

IndigoBABY: This is the premiere destination for beautiful, consciously created baby essentials and irresistible baby gifts. The essential books for Baby’s First Library, eco-friendly nursery necessities, silver keepsakes, cuddly stuffed animals, the most adorable onesies and stylish accessories for new parents.

The Wellness Shop: [Nourish. Sleep. Mindful Meditation] There is something inspiring and supportive for every age and stage of the journey in this section. From fitness gear to energy- balancing crystals to plush robes and self care books.

They also have a section dedicated to magazines, games, thoughtful gift ideas, and teas & sweets.

Indigo is one those stores where you can literally spend hours browsing and have a long list of items you just MUST HAVE. They also were in the process of opening up a cafe within the store which I think will be a huge hit with the customers and locals. I can totally see myself hanging there and working on my laptop. They also host a lot of events in store, like storytime and book signings. I also have to note that all of the staff were beyond helpful and super nice. I think customer service plays a big role in how consumers see a brand, and they are represented so well in that store!

If you are in the tri-state area, make sure you head to the Mall at Short Hills to check out Indigo. Click HERE for more information on the events taking place Grand Opening weekend [Oct 27 + 28]

This post was brought to you in collaboration with Indigo, but as always, all opinions are my own.