Fall Clothing Reboot

I have been guilty of dressing less than my best.  Either from pure laziness or not being inspired it has happened. As fall comes along layering will be key and for me going into my Pintrest and transitioning my outfits will be my number one go to. You can take a few of your Summer pieces and layer them up to make some cute finds for any occasions.  You can go from hayride to a Fall brunch with just a little effort. I laugh every time I go out with my one girlfriend, I am always on Pintrest finding an outfit for the occasion and because she’s my boo I want to be too cute for our Instagram pics!

I would love to be drippin in finesse when it comes to money but sadly the way my bank account is set up, I’ll have to settle for reshifting my outfits.  What that means is shopping my own closet.  I have so many pieces every season that I simply forget I even have.  For that reason I plan to reshift my closets and break out my boots.  Yes boot season is upon us and I have some that I bought and was excited for that the second I bring them out nobody will say they can remember seeing me in.  Pretty sad but blessed thing to be able to say.

So armed with my Pintrest, I will be reinventing a few pieces.  A few things are a must have such as scarves to dress up or dress down any outfit.  Scarves worn around the neck especially a cute bulky oversized infinity scarf is a Fall staple.  You can really make an outfit pop with a scarf.  I would say if you have a scarf you can take an outfit from blah to wow.  Warm boot socks is a great thing to have because you can pop a color and have that boot sock appear above your low-cut boot or even just have to help with layering.  Remember Fall is all cute and games until the temperature dips and its cold.  So grab a few.  You can go to places such as Five Below, a department store, or even my favorite spot, Target for some awesome finds.  Remember your wardrobe doesn’t have to be expensive to look expensive.

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Invest in a few statement pieces and cute sweaters.  This will be a game changer.  Fall is all about sweaters or cute hoodies.  A few weeks ago it rained so hard that I had to go and get my Penn State hoodie that I bought in the Summer.  I wasn’t mad.  I paired that up with a cute rain boot and some well fitted jeans and cute headband and left the house warm and cute without a lot of effort.  I also would suggest 2nd hand stores.  These are your Thrift stores.  When I was a kid I used to hate it.  My parents were so into Thrift stores they had frequent shopper cards.  I never understood how the clothes were cheap but we needed a frequent shopper card.  I would always find cute pieces but I was so embarrassed.  Now I get it.  Shout out to them for showing me the way.  I know for a fact that a lot of fashions that are out now have been recycled and what better place to look cute and save money than a Thrift shop?  I’ll wait……

Take the time to put a little extra push in your wardrobe.  You do not want to be out this Fall looking less than your best.  I always would get frustrated askign myself in old pictures how I could have come out of the house and although I am no fashion expert I know a few tricks of the trade by looking up the look I am going for and if you too want to look your best, I would suggest you do the same!

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Wonky Feelings

Unfortunately these last few days have been a bit up and down.  For one on a personal level there is so much on my heart and mind.  I am sorting a few things out.  I noticed that as I work my life out that my shift towards gratitude has shifted.  I’ll get back to that later.  Also Fall is around the corner and although I am super happy about it, its only a reminder that there is so much to do before the year ends.

Also on Friday it was the most craziest day ever. I got out the car not put together. My bag was open. I had 20 minutes to get to work for a 2 min walk and still…..

I get to Dunkin Donuts to get a breakfast sandwich and I can’t find my wallet. I finally pay for my item and I bumped into a lady like 3 times. I’m walking into the door trying to gather my thoughts….what is going on?

As if matters couldn’t get worse, I take a walk at lunch only to discover that one side of my skirt is falling revealing a lot more than I needed to share with the world! I had to take a step back and again gather my thoughts….

Check in On your Strong Friend

I have an amazing network of friends from all walks of life.  Talking to one of them this week about how the weather didn’t help my bottom line and realizing that she too felt the same way.  Let me interject gratitude, I do not have it as bad as those in the path of Hurricane Florence, I am grateful.  In the midst of gratefulness I want to be transparent.  I miss the mark daily but I am also actively checking myself daily. Sometimes I get inspired by my ability to balance and then on days where that balance seems not to measure up, my feelings sometimes takes a nose dive.  This has been that week.  I have been pushed and finding that I am coming off as irresponsible when in actuality I am in the midst of change from the inside out.  Guilt of these changes has made me question myself.  My girlfriend reminded me that one she is here and we are here together.  I love knowing I have support and need to be more open in receiving the love in return.  So word of advice, fill your cup and be open to check on a friend to see how their cup looks too!  I am going to do better at that.

Feeling Overload

Daily I take a look at what is going on around me.  I looked at my kids and noticed they needed me to listen a little more.  I feel as if I am pretty good at anticipating other people’s needs.  However with my own, I need a little work.  Example, Thursday night I was getting agitated by a conversation with my husband.  I felt like I wasn’t being heard.  I decided to be quiet and ask myself a few questions. I asked what did I need at that moment.  I decided that my issues of frustration is because of old feelings of what my husband had done that I wasn’t over.  I simply wasn’t mad at him but mad at me for not dropping something from years ago.  I went upstairs and decided how worth it was it at that moment and dropped it.  I washed my face while praying and asked God to heal.  I decided that carrying frustration was simply only on me and that it only hinders me.  It wasn’t as if the issue was something that was life changing. I simply was mad and that madness needed checked.  I can’t grow personally and not drop the charges but expect charges of frustration or anger to be dropped on my behalf.  I have to give what I want to receive.

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Gratitude

Being thankful has been this week’s recurring theme.  All week I have challenged myself to see the good in bad situations.  All week openly saying what I am grateful for around my family.  Letting my kids openly know how awesome they are.  Recognizing their effort!  I have been in conversation replacing complaints with gratitude.  Counting my blessings this week.  Every situation that could have made me turn left, I declared gratitude and seen it turn.  Every single one.  Even with my wacky feelings this week, I have felt like I figured out what I needed and gave myself permission to seek it and receive it.

This weekend I will take a long bath, get some flowers, burn my favorite candle, get some rest, and have fun with my kids.  These are the things that I will do to set my weekend right and continue my self-care practice.  What do you need?  What are the little things that can set your spirit back into alignment?  What are the things that make you feel the most centered?  What will quiet and heal your thoughts?  Do these things and more and do it so often that it becomes a part of who you are!

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Maybe your week was great.  If so that’s super awesome.  If your week was like mine with super highs and lows, know that you can get through it.  You can replace gratitude in the places of frustration.  You can call on a friend or family and be encouraged.  It’s okay to be upset but don’t stay there.  It’s important to find out what you need and most importantly remember that the answer or relief may come from you.  You have to be honest about what you need.  Be honest about what the real issues.  Don’t place the saving grace into someone else’s hands.  Sometimes just dealing and checking yourself is all you need to make yourself whole.

Enjoy your weekend and thanks for reading!

Monday Motivation

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I had a good weekend if you haven’t read up on my run, you should. But today I rode the train thinking of what I wanted to accomplish this week.  Some general themes of self-care came up as well as making work deadlines, but then I thought about ways I could be specific and get my intentions across.  I broke out my journal and began to write my goals down. I wanted to be clear as I started this Monday of my intentions.  So I encourage you to do the same.  Be clear on what you want to get accomplished this week.  Also write down how you plan to get done what you need to get done this week. Don’t just let the week happen.  Don’t let Monday come and you simply exist.  Be apart of your own story and stop allowing things to happen to you.  Yes, life is hard and comes with unexpected issues we can’t avoid, but there are a lot of things we can control and sometimes we just simply look at things as they hit. Be active in your goals, your life, and the lives of those around you.  Have a good week and a good day on purpose by starting your days with purpose.

Summer Be Good to Me!

Welp in a few days Summer will officially make its mark.  There a few things we can do to ensure we have a great one.  So here are some ways to get Summer going:

Make Me Over

Ladies, all of my ladies, do me a favor and check your make up bag.  Have you checked your bag to make sure that you are getting rid of a few things you might need to switch up.  I know there are a few things that we just absolutely love and don’t want to part ways but don’t let your makeup bag be the cause of increased acne breakouts or other facial issues.  Please let it go or replace it.  Trust me your face will thank you.

Wardrobe

It’s the time for sun dresses, shorts, swimsuits! Who isn’t excited?  There are all of these items in every size.  So you can be cool and cute all Summer long no matter what size you are in.  Enjoy it! Trust me once the heat is gone and the snow is back on the ground you are going to be sad.  Let me say especially to my ladies, there are way too many options to be comfortable for whatever you are doing so there is absolutely NO reason to be in these streets in your pajamas.  I do NOT care how they feel, wear some clothes.  Real clothes!  Thanks the world would appreciate it.  Also back in the day I was taught not to come outside in a head scarf, now we can wear them fashionably.  There are a thousand YouTube videos in how to tie one so that you can match it up and wear it flattering.  Do not come outside in the regular you slept in your scarf look.  Thanks again.  We got to care about how we walk out the house not only due to the fact that you may run into someone you know but just because self-love causes us to walk differently.

Know your Arena

If you are going to concert dress for one. This could go under wardrobe but I wanted to make it separate.  You can’t be at Brunch with sports clothes unless you are going to a game. I know we can do what we want, but know your arena.  Would you go to a wedding in jeans?  No! Then be sure that you are in the right arena with the correct clothing.  It makes a difference and not only that we live in a take a picture world and I remember when I was going through depression that I would be out looking a hot mess. I wasn’t dressed for the right arena and that sent me further in a tail spin. It happens trust me.  So research and use Pintrest.  Pintrest will actually align up some suggestions if you do not know.  Have some fun with your looks and be fly all Summer long.

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Summer Parties

This could be in the form of a cookout or a good party, make it your best one.  If you are the one who is throwing one, pick a theme and commit to it.  Nothing is more fun than a good Summer party with all of the frills.  Also realize you can be super creative and stay in budget.  Trust me when I have a theme even for my kids, I find ways to keep my budget on point but nail it every time.  Have some fun and make it a great party.  Also drinks are important non alcoholic and alcoholic. You can really find some new ways to drink a refreshing drink that makes you feel good and wow a crowd.  Do your research.  Also if you choose to consume alcohol do so conservatively and use Uber or Lyft or a trusted friend or family member for a ride.  DUI are super expensive.  Don’t let that Summer turn up cost you or someone else their life. Have fun and be responsible.

Get Out

There are many events in your city or town that is free.  Please explore and get out. Do not sit around salty all Summer long complaining about how there’s nothing for you to do. Get on  Google and find something to do.  There may be events in towns and cities near you to explore as well.  All I am saying is the boredom that kicks in by adults are self inflicting. You have the choice to sit and be miserable or be creative.  If you are single and are saying well I have no one to go with, I understand.  I used to say that too.  One part of doing better socially is sometimes pushing past that and getting out.  It’s scary I won’t lie.  However be open to meeting new people while out.  Even married my husband hates all activities that require you to be outside in the sun or around bugs.  Every festival that I want to attend I used to not go or break him down to go.  Now yes he will go, but the ones that he won’t I have learned to get out and have a great time.  One time I went somewhere and eventually he showed up.  I refuse to not attend these types of events.

Solo Trips

Yes I took a big solo trip in April but I also take solo day trips or beach days.  These are important as getting together with my girls, family time, and baecations.  You got to know you and what you like.  The best way is to push past being uncomfortable and explore.  I love it NOW.  I will not pretend that it’s always been this way because that is a lie.  However EVERY time I have come home I have been better. I do NOT answer any non emergency calls while I am out.  That is my time and my family respects it.  If I am on my phone the whole time, when am I having my time?  Reserve your time and don’t let anyone infringe on it and that’s family and friends.  The only thing that should happen is confirmation that you are safe and if an emergency then yes a call.  Your time is your time.

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My Summer Playlist

So here is my personal Summer Playlist.  I love music and nothing is better than having that AC on or having the windows down and have the base jumping:

Nice; The Carters

Summertime; DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince

New Rules; Dua Lipa

Nice for What; Drake

Wait; Maroon 5

Rock with you;  Michael Jackson

I like it; Cardi B

This is America; Childish Gambino

Can’t stop the feeling; Justin Timberlake

Big Poppa; Notarious B.I.G

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My Summer Must Haves

Pool time-tan lines are made at the pool or beach. I love tan lines because they remind me that I have enjoyed a little bit of life.  I look forward to them and allowing all of this melanin to pop!

Ice-cream sundae bar: yes this can be done all year-long but nothing is better than eating it and stepping up my ice-cream sundae bar in the cutest of dishes

Outside Movies: in Philly they do series of movies for all age ranges throughout.  You will find me at one or more of these in the city

Beach day-self explanatory

Summer Fests-another thing that I love about Philly is that all summer long there is a festival for many reasons and many of them come ready to go with alcohol. I love the ones that are kid friendly since I have kids.  We all have fun, it wears them out, mommy and daddy can have our time or have a quiet house afterwards.  It’s a win, win!

Cookouts-who doesn’t like grilled food?  It’s the best and couple that with some awesome Summer salads and you got a good meal.  Nothing like getting together with a few folks and having a great time while the kids play!

So break out the sunscreen and fill up the water jugs it is happening.  Today alone it’s almost 100 degrees and the smile on my face can’t be wiped off.  So bring on the sweat, the fun, the sun, and all of the things to do. I will be hitting the streets and blogging it along the way.  Enjoy this season!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to do in Your Weekends to Prepare For Your Upcoming Week?

Weekends if you work a Monday-Friday type of job should be used to get your mind right, spend time with family and friends and have a break from the mundane.  If you are an entrepreneur you know there is no such thing as a day off, work is all the time.  If you are in the nursing field or are the type that has to be in public office such police, fire etc then time off is a blessing.  Regardless when its time to break, break! Overworking even if it’s for yourself is crazy.  None of that money you will take with you.  So learn to balance your life so you can make a little living and be here to enjoy the fruits of your labor!

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What you should be doing is simple:

  1. Relaxing-yes this is not a curse word.  Relaxing.  I used to try to jam pack so much into the weekend and slowly I am learning that less is best.  I don’t need each second filled with something to do.  I do need to find activities that everyone needs in my house but more specifically I selfishly need to make sure I am good to.
  2. Rest-I have 3 kids  and a pretty busy schedule and used to feel super guilty about taking a nap or going to bed early or resting.  This is human nature and a right. Take it.  Do not feel guilty.  Crawl in that bed, put your feed up, get your rest and get some sleep.  Successful people know how to turn it up and they know when to turn it down.
  3. Renew your mind-you see the pattern. It starts with choices and you must make a choice to renew. Some people go to church or other spiritual filling exercise.  Some do yoga.  Whatever you choose and there are plenty of choices do it and do it regularly.
  4. Plan and work their plan. Sometime I sit and look at the week before and find out how I could have done things differently.  It could be something as simple as making snacks bags the day before whatever it is find it, do it.  Any time saved is enough to shave off stress throughout the week.  This is why my crock pot is sacred.  Shout out to my husband who got me 2.  I ain’t hardly mad. I will turn them both on and that’s at least 2-4 days worth of food per crock pot meal.
  5. Have some fun.  I mean my goodness let your hair down a little. Grab you some adult juice or a mocktail.  Go find a party and dance or create a party right at home.  Do you know how many times a dance party for me and the kids has been a workout and fun?  Plenty.  Lighten up.
  6. Go on an outing. Please do not tell me about how broke you are.  Broke is a mindset.  Yes your account could have cobwebs but be inventive.  Do you know how strong my Google fingers are?  Hella strong.  The amount of free I have found could hurt someone’s feelings. Get out. Go to the park and get some fresh air.  The winter is tricky times but can find something to do.  Even doing some walking around at the malls on a rainy day is fun. FYI, the malls and movie theatres are the most busy during these times.
  7. Create.  I find that I use my Pintrest the most on the weekends or sometimes during the end of the week to find activities that are super fun, cheap, and did I say fun?  Yes there are somethings for everyone.  You could have a movie in night where you invite another family. Make it fun by creating cute little movie themed snacks, and it can be simple and rewarding.

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Whatever you plan to do this weekend-actually do.  I hate going into work and people talk about how boring their weekend was.  I am thinking to myself, they themselves may just be boring people.  Life is about living. Get out and find out what life has to offer. There are a thousand events to go to, things to do, places to be. Whatever it is get out there and find them!

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My Review of Disney Pixar CoCo

So because I am for sure certain that others haven’t seen the movie yet, I will not give out any spoilers.  I will instead tell you how the movie affected me and my family.  We went to see it on Saturday night (December 16).  We had a full day that day.  My son had a play date over that day, and just with some running around, we were looking forward to some family time.

Well one of the first things you will notice is that the movie is super colorful.  Its eye-catching and that alone kept my 3-year-old engaged.  The movie is about a young man named Miguel who wants to become a singer. His family has banned music and all of its influences.  He wants to sing so bad that he ends up in the Land of the Dead to get a blessing from his family.  So the beat marches on to see how this will end for Miguel. The adventure is all over the place. I loved it.  The kids loved it.  Now to the part you need to know:

  1. There is a lot of reference to the dead.  If you are not comfortable and wanting to have this conversation with the little people you may take with you, this isn’t the movie for you.  It can still be enjoyed beyond death but since the whole movie is around it, just be on alert!
  2. If you or your child has recently lost someone this can be a movie that helps or aids in healing. It really helped my kids in expressing the pain of losing their grandmother. I didn’t expect that response but crying is good for the soul, right?!
  3. It was good to see Mexican culture in a positive light.  I loved everything about it
  4. It was long enough to catch my attention and hold it but not too overwhelming long.
  5. It got standing ovation and the movie came out Thanksgiving day, and it’s still has a great impact on the crowds that are viewing it.

Now I am not a big crier but I will tell you this, seeing my 8-year-old with so much emotion got me. I mean she was crying and she doesn’t cry that often either.  I could not help but to be moved.  It helped us as parents as we were overcome with emotion to openly discuss her feelings.  This is why I have to say if you have kids that are of age but don’t want to open this emotional well, then be cautious, view it yourself first.

All in all this movie was solid, it had romance, drama, adventure, and culture.  This is a must see with the right audience.  My younger daughter didn’t tap into the emotional parts of the movie.  However my older two, ages 6 and 8 definitely understood.  We all needed to keep Mom-Mom continually in our hearts.  I have a feeling that her memory will be here in our hearts forever!

Stopping Through: December 13, 2017

So we are about 12 days to Christmas and the excitement, tiredness, and joy are all mixing over. Some moments I can’t even tell you which one I am in.  I am also finding that I also have had mixed moments of sadness too.  So for all of those who are having to push through this season, push on through.  It can be hard because everyone wants you to be super jolly.  I am more jolly because of my kids but if I am honest, the jolly times can fluctuate often.

I was reminded of how pushing through is a necessity when I had to deal with my kids. They keep me grounded because I can’t tell them to come up to where I am not.  So that within itself, keeps me on my toes. However I have increased a few things along the way that help me keep it together.

Podcasts

I am starting to get into podcasts. I listen during my first machine of working out.  Then I switch back over to music for my second machine. I listen during work as well with one headphone in and one headphone out.  I am hoping for cordless headphones for Christmas to make listening so much easier and fluid.  However yes, podcasts are doing it for me.  I love them.  I haven’t found one I can recommend yet, I feel like I have to go through many in one series before I can just put my stamp of approval.  When I do, I will recommend some for you.

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Planning

So I am a planner by nature.  Although we are knocking at the door of 2018, my first quarter calendar is already super full.  I am going to have to be at the point, to say no to a few invitations going forward.  I love doing things but doing the most is not happening in 2018.  I need to have some me time, family time, and bae time.  I can’t come to everything and I am not going to feel guilty about it.  So if you get a decline this year or even next year, know I love you, but being thinner is in my waistline, not my mental state or my pocket.  I am making sure that I plan a lot of fun things I want and fitness classes, etc My goal is to work on being whole this year.  I finally got a good balance in all areas now we going to be whole and balanced.  Also I am in the early stages of planning a me trip. I thought about opening up to others and I haven’t fully ruled it out, but I will begin by planning and then opening up instead of having a full pow wow getting opinions and then going from there.  I want to do activities that I want this year and I am going to do them.  I love people but times I am an introvert and I want what I want.  This is the year of going after it all!

Coming Late, Leaving Early

I hate being late for something. I will be the type that will once late not come because I hate all eyes on me.  However I am enjoying attending things late and leaving early.  I have not been able to fin a way to multiply myself so all of these events are doing the most.  We are at points where I have to literally stop through.  I can’t be at full events unless it’s a wedding.  I am like at best 2 hours. I had someone get mad that after they had a function they wanted everyone to get together and shop afterwards.  I was like, Sis, this is a no.  I have somewhere to be even if that place is home with my shoes off watching football. Let me live!

Some folks stay getting offended, I going to need some understanding especially those who consistently text you or make a group invite a week before your event.  If you have a December event, and you trying to make numbers, you are going to have to tell folks in a timely manner. I feel too at times, those who are going to be there will sacrifice but let’s keep this all the way real, this type of mentality is out-of-pocket.  Yes, those who will be there but that type of word choice, is stale and I hope folks realize the power of invitations and giving out the information early in 2018.  I used to think that but then again I also give folks information early as possible.

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Take a Deep Breath

Also I take time to enjoy my favorites.  I probably working out more because it’s a great stress reliever. In addition that has allowed me to enjoy a glass of wine here and there and a donut too.  I enjoy my favorites around this time.  I am not going to kill myself while I am trying to maintain my sanity and waistline.  So with that being said, if you see me with a piece of cake, charge it to the game.  It is what it is and happiness for me comes in many forms.

So I really take it up a notch for the next few days leading up to the holidays.  I still have to do my movie night with the family with my hot cocoa bar.  Today is national cocoa had I been in the full mindset, I would have had it prepared but I am not so I will do it next week!  Enjoy this time. Take it from me and don’t let anyone take you there to where you are super angry over a thing. This means in driving too, parking spot wars, get together at family and friends, nothing.  Take this time in.  However if you are struggling know you’re not alone.  Do what you need to do so that the time of the year is overwhelming you.  If you are constantly saying I can’t wait for it to be over, there may be a few self-care things you aren’t employing and you need to do so quickly.

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As far as updates on what I am the fam bam are doing, you can catch them here, ToiTime Blog

Our weekends are super full so there will be more to post as they happen.  Other than that, have a great holiday!