Wednesday, August 28, 2019

5 Things I've Learned Living Alone

Earrings: J. Crew, sold out| Dress: HERE| Shoes: TopShop, old
Makeup by: NESS MUA
Photography by: K. Gill Photo
Shot at: FD Photo Studio

As I wrap up my very first year of living alone, I feel a sense of overwhelming gratitude. Despite challenges and unexpected events, I would be remiss if I didn't share that I have felt the guiding hand of my God and the universe supporting me at every single turn. No need has been left unfulfilled. Even my wants have been supplied for generously ❤ I am forever grateful.
If someone had told me 5, even 10 years ago - that I would be living on my own in a strange city, I would never have believed them. You see, I went directly from my parent's house to my husband's house - before I was even 20 years old. This wasn't unusual where I'm from, in fact - it was pretty much expected.  Fortunately for me, I fell in love with my best friend and spent many years indescribably happy with him. I lived out my dreams, I traveled the world, and I evolved into the version of myself that stands before you today. 
Sometimes things change. It's no one's fault. It just is. I found myself in a position where I felt compelled to make a number of difficult choices. Nonetheless, I have absolutely NO REGRETS!!! I am so very THANKFUL for the journey of my life!
I was thinking about the past year the other day, I realized I've learned quite a few things living on my own, LOL! 😁😁😁

Here are 5 highlights:
  1. Bills come  e v e r y single month. Actually, let me back up- bills come about every 20 days. Now that I have the joy of paying all of my own bills, I cannot help but notice their relentless frequency 😦 I told my great aunt, 'Paying bills is for the birds!' πŸ˜¬πŸ˜£πŸ˜΅ 
  2. The greatest and only fear of my adult life has been BUGS. Yet, this year I learned that I am capable of killing a bug, even an extremely large one πŸ‘€.... A large bug ventured into my apartment via an open window. It was HUGE, like the length of it was almost the width of my hand! Thankfully, my protective kitty companion Cotton Candy spotted it before I did, and in capturing it she did quite a bit of damage to its mobility before dropping it at my feet as some sort of gift... When I tell you that my heart raced, that would be the understatement of the year...Long story short: I finally mustered up the courage and strength to step on it and kill it. After a few minutes of prayer and deliberation, I picked it up and promptly deposited it into the trash outside. The moral of the story is: You have the ability inside of you to conquer your fears.
  3. Making your home your sanctuary is priceless. When I moved into my apartment, I made a promise to myself that I would protect the energy of my home, that I would not allow anyone to visit that could possibly disrupt the peace that I feel here. I kept that promise, and as a result, no matter what stresses seek to invade my mind - when I arrive home, in the stillness of my sanctuary, I feel a complete sense of peace. The energy remains undisrupted.
  4. Being an independent woman is overrated 😘 I have always had a measure of independence, however, doing everything all by myself for myself is also for the birds! I would happily delegate car maintenance, trash removal, and a host of other miscellaneous tasks to someone else! WHEW! It ain't easy out here!
  5. Being patient with yourself is essential. I am learning to be comfortable in discomfort. So many experiences are entirely new to me. For instance, I now take walks alone. Sometimes I dine out alone. Other times I find myself feeling low. It's not shocking - my entire life has changed. I've learned to allow time and space for myself to feel and work through the process. 
Enough about me Babes! It's your turn! I'd love to hear about some of the highlights of your SUMMER 😍
Until next time,

Monday, August 26, 2019

Summer Swag with MAZDA

This post is sponsored by Mazda. All opinions belong to me.

With the final days of SUMMER 2019 upon us, now is the perfect time to recap a few highlights of the season.  
June went by in a total blur πŸ’¨, however- I did manage to enjoy a few outdoor venues, glorious summer nights, and I tried a number of new restaurants. 
I spent a good chunk of July away on travel, including a trip to Tennessee to visit my family 😍 My friends at Mazda were kind enough to arrange for me to have the cutest vehicle to knob around town in. 
Have you seen the MAZDA 3? I had one in "Polymetal Gray" with a GORGEOUS red leather interior. How did they know that red was my favorite color?! LOL! I received a number of compliments on how cute it was when I was out &  about. 

Here's a rundown of some of the features of the 2019 MAZDA3 Hatchback w/ premium package that I drove:

  • 186 horsepower
  • electric power-assisted steering
  • 18-inch black Alloy wheels
  • LED headlights/taillights
  • Daytime running lights
  • Rain-sensing windshield wipers
  • driver seat memory
  • dual-zone auto climate control
  • 8.8 color display
  • AM/FM Bose premium audio w/ 12 speakers
  • SiriusXM satellite radio capability
  • HD radio + 2 USB ports
  • Bluetooth/handsfree
  • rearview camera
  • power sliding glass moonroof
  • active driving display on the windshield

My personal favorites were the:

  • red leather interior (the hue was so vibrant and popped nicely against the dark gray exterior) with stitching and perforated design
  • AM/FM Bose premium audio w/ 12 speakers (the sound system was πŸ‘Œ )
  • 18-inch black Alloy wheels ❤

Do share Babes, what did you get into this SUMMER?! And - have you driven a MAZDA?
Until next time,

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Encore Edition: The Lena Dress from Lane Bryant

This post is sponsored by Lane Bryant. All opinions shared belong to me.
The Lena Dress: c/o HERE | shoes: c/o Lane Bryant
Photography by A. Robinson

Hey Babes!
Today's post features a 2nd go in The Lena Dress available now exclusively at Lane Bryant πŸ˜‰ Check out the first look that I styled from the collection in my last post HERE. The Sleeveless Lena Dress differs slightly from the Short Lena Dress, however the same great fit is definitely in place. 
What could be more versatile than a dress that goes from the office to the beach with ease?!  It's totally designed to be worn everywhere. This dress features a v-neck, fit & flare cut, and high-low hem. Sidebar: This Corsair Blue hue is simply beautiful😍Pair it with a jacket or sweater for dinner parties, heels and sparkling jewelry for a night out, or a tailored blazer for an easy look for your 9-5. 

Check out the entire Lena dress line including a fabulous jumpsuit HERE!

Until next time,

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Summer Dress Code, featuring Lane Bryant

This post is sponsored by Lane Bryant. All opinions shared belong to me.
The Lena Dress: c/o HERE | shoes: c/o Lane Bryant
Photography by A. Robinson

Today's blog post features The Lena Dress, a fan favorite exclusively available at Lane Bryant. The Lena Dress flatters every body type! Get this: Not only is it universally flattering - it is now available in a variety of colors and silhouettes! What color would you like to rock it in? I'm wearing the short Lena Dress in ivory. 
Fit & flare fits are my comfort zone, the fit of this dress does not disappoint in the least. I'm wearing a size 12. Not only does it offer the perfect amount of stretch (100% polyester), it has a belt that is perfect in width and length to cinch your waist, PLUS---> it has functional pockets!!!
The Lena dress is ideal to close out the final days of summer and to usher in the first days of FALL. When the temperatures shift, I can see it easily styled with a blazer, silk scarf, leather boots, and a cute tote. 
Oh, did I mention that it is also machine washable?!

Check out the entire Lena dress line including a fabulous jumpsuit HERE!

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Frill Seeker

top: c/o HERE| bottom: c/o HERE

Hey Babes,
It wouldn't be summer without a swimsuit post! I snagged this vintage paisley print number from a brand based in Australia. I absolutely love the frill detail on the bikini top + the fact that it can be worn on or off the shoulders. Versatility is a beautiful thing! I prefer two-piece swimsuits over one-piece suits for this very reason. If I can mix & match - even better! Over to you, do you prefer one-piece suits over bikinis, tankinis, etc?
Until next time,

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Here & There

Hat: HERE|Earrings: BaubleBar|Top: c/o HERE|Culottes: Old|Shoes: ZARA
Photography by A. Robinson

Hey Babes!!!
I stand in disbelief that this is my very first blog post of the SUMMER πŸ‘€ Can you believe it? Hopefully you keep up with me on Instagram and you're already aware that I'm alive and thriving, but in the event that you don't - HERE I AM! πŸ˜†How are you?! I have missed you so! I promise: Consistency is on the way! 
SUMMER 2019 has been packed with travel, working with brands (including snagging my biggest contract to date🎈🎈🎈), events, and sheer JOY! Since I started blogging way back when I've always struggled in creating the proper balance with being in a moment versus capturing a moment for my blog/social media accounts. If you've been along with me for the ride, you know that nine times out of ten I opt to LIVE in a moment versus capture it on film and share it with others. 
However, I've set a few new intentions for myself, included among them is mastering the balance of living a life and sharing it.
Until next time,