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!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yay for Spring!

It’s finally here in all of its cold and still snow on the ground love. Spring has arrived. Who wouldn’t be happy?  What I love about Spring is that it brings me that much closer to my favorite season and that is Summer.  Spring allows us all one last season to get Summer time fine. For all of the people who use Winter as an excuse not to work out because of the cold will have nothing to hide under.  Yes Spring brings showers, but if you really were about that work out life you will work around it.  So as we celebrate Spring’s arrival here are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. It’s time to change out hygiene products.  I don’t know if this post is inspired by the Strawberry Letter I heard on the Steve Harvey show about the woman who didn’t wash, but we ALL need to make some changes.  Our bodies change over when warmer weather comes in.  Change your makeup, deodorant, hair products, etc to what YOU need to be at your freshest.
  2. For the Spring and Summer over shavers, please get to it.  I can’t say what someone should do as far as shaving or waxing but I will say that the benefits of either one is cleanliness.  Some people do it for appearance reason but always know less hair means less trapped in smells.  I will tell you what my own momma taught me, you can smell you.  No one should have to tell you to that you stink.  So let’s all tighten up.
  3. Color.  Enjoy some color.  I know black and gray is the go to but…Spring is here add a few shades of color.  It doesn’t have to be super bright colors just yet but a pop of color definitely helps in aiding in happier modes.  So don’t be shy.  Scarfs are great ways to add color if you aren’t confident enough to go all the way in with a color top or bottom.  So get your color on!
  4. Change-please note this is the time where salons are their super busiest.  Everyone wants cuts and colors so if this is you, book early. Also be sure that you go for a consult.  Do not just go and plop in a chair unless it’s a stylist you are super comfortable with.
  5. Pedicures and manicures-start getting them if you haven’t all winter.  If you can’t afford them there are way too many at home gel or regular nail polish systems that cost less than a salon stop. Visit your local beauty supply and get creative.  There is no real reason to walk around raggedy. In the words of my best friend, you can grab an at home foot scrubber.  So scrub off the winter blues and look to be more polished literally.
  6. Keep up your gym or outside work out commitments.  The warm weather can have you all in your feelings but the feeling of not being able to wear shorts or a cute skirt is even worst.  Do not slack up instead be creative. Don’t have gym money? There are YouTube videos with free workout routines.  Don’t want to do that, get you an old-fashioned jump rope or hula hoop.  Trust me a few times of this a week can take off inches off of your waist. Get active.
  7. Reconnect .  Start planning that Summer trip.  I advise all to find a trip in your budget for yourself, your family, and friends too. Nothing says relaxed you like a trip.  Make yourself a priority. There are no excuses.  There is apps like Groupon that can get you where you want to go.  Last Summer I did a beach day solo and I WILL be doing it again.  It feels good to let your hair down and you don’t need to break the bank to do it.  However whatever you do make the sacrifice and enjoy life more.  Your family, friends, job, etc will thank you. The more relaxed you are, the better you are to those around you.  Plus you have a few neglected friends who miss you so meet ups are important.
  8. Love you.  Yes as it gets warmer you will find that some people get more irritated. It should be the opposite since the Winter may have had you in cabin fever, but for some its the polar opposite. Love on yourself.  If YOU need something to make your life better, get it.  Meaning for example, you need more time outside because being inside is wearing on you, than do that.  Sit outside on your front porch, take a walk, have an outside picnic do what works for you.

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Enjoy the Spring. I know at least in my area it’s still cold and the snow hasn’t even melted all the way, but trust me warmer weather is on its way.  As it gets here, people will be out more.  For some who deal with anxiety as socialization increases, be aware and do what you need to do to be prepared.  Don’t let it stop you.  Get out, and do what you need for you but enjoy it!!

Happy First Day of Summer

OH yes can you feel the sun on your skin?  I can.  I love summer.  I’m not sure if I love Summer more than Fall but I love Summer.  It’s such a magical time of year for me.  I love being outside at festivals, cookouts, at the pool, etc.  I love it all.  Nothing like mingling with friends and family during the Summer heat.

I know for all of those who borderline hate Summer, I still love you but just keep in mind if you live in one of those areas like me that gets hit with snow.  As soon as the snow hits we get the complainers that cry bring on the heat but when it comes we complain about that, right?  Not me I live for the heat.  I rather be hot than cold.  Any who so as usual with this being my favorite time of the year let me hip you to my list of Summer time etiquette.

  1. Cookouts-always no matter if someone says don’t bring anything, come with the goods.  Even if it’s a hostess gift like a bottle of wine, bring something more than your belly and mouth.  Cookouts are fun but expensive to pull off.  The cost in meat alone can throw a budget into a downward spiral.  Always stay gracious and no do not do what Beyoncé says and get your paper.  No get you some packs of hamburgers and rolls to share.  Yes you will need paper to get the hamburger rolls but often times folks sitting on the paper don’t always want to contribute.  So take a dive to the store on your way to the cookout.  Bring a bag of ice, something especially if you rolling in deep with a party of 5 like me at all times.
  2. Sunblock should be your friend.  I don’t care if you are a walking melanin poster board, get you some SPF.  You can and will burn and skin cancer, hello?  Ain’t nothing cute about skin cancer, so protect yourself and your family.  I meant it they sell them 2 in a pack nowadays.  I don’t care what brand but make sure it’s at least 50 SPF.
  3. Drink but don’t forget the water. I know I for one love a good alcoholic drink like the next one but don’t skip on the water.  No the excuse that alcohol is mixed with water won’t work while your behind is at the bottom of the pool laid out due to dehydration.  Nope get you an adult sippy cup aka them BPA free cups and get your drink on.  Then when you drink your alcoholic drink you earned the right for that cold one.
  4. Plan ahead. Summer is mixed with a lot of sun and the weather can be unpredictable. So make plans and always have a back up plan especially if you have children.  I usually don’t even tell my kids that we are going somewhere until we are in route.  However make sure if the occasional shower pops up you are ready.
  1. Be stylish.  Summer is a good time to throw on a dress ladies.  Its something that you don’t have to even think about.  But newsflash sun dresses ain’t for everyone. I know you think it is but it’s not.  Get the dress that flatters you.  If you got problem areas it’s no time to be working a body con dress.  You need a dress with a little flair.  You can be cute and not looked squeezed into your outfit in the name of Summer.  Trust me your friends didn’t tell you but I will.  Get the right dress for the body you carrying around and not the one you wish you had.  If you putting in the work, that other body is on its way.  If not well you got work to do but leave the other dresses for the other ladies that need them.
  2. Have fun-do you know how many free events are in a city near you?  No really there are plenty.  You have a phone in this day and age and Goggle works pretty much on all of them.  Stop the “I have nothing to do” phrase.  You got things to do its the little path between look it up and get up.  I am the queen of the goggle.  If I want it, I look for it and then follow through and go.  Fun is really just a click away.  Also have backups ready for rainy days.  I love to place all of my magazines in a bin so when a slow day comes, I can read them or a good book.  I may even open the windows and doors and let the rain quiet myself.  However on high fun days, my family and I are usually up and out.  
  3. Make memories-are you the type to look at what others are doing but you yourself don’t have Summer vacation, or Summer fun photos?  Well that’s because you got to take some.  Get out and capture the moment but don’t lose yourself behind the lens. Memories are what it’s about so make some.

Summer is a time to have fun.  Make sure you are out and about.  We will be talking about some of the fun things that take place in summer time such as outside dates, wedding season, etc.  So be on the lookout.

 

Summer break don’t let it break you!

Welp the sun is out and the heat is high that can only mean one thing, summer break.  The phrase that all parents dread to hear at the end of the school year.  Most parents will scramble to find summer camps only to find that either the good ones are taken or they can’t afford it.

What does a parent do?  Well one thing to do is check with your child’s school.  They are a good source of information for summer camps if you still intend on placing your child in one. Another suggestion is to check with your local recreation commission office.  They have discounts on all things summer from discounted tickets to places to go.

Movie theaters usually does a summer series where they have movies from almost free to discounted prices during the day.  Also you’re already on Facebook, Instagram and twitter use these resources to follow the places you want to take your kids they usually announce special online deals throughout the summer.

Get out and head to your local library. They have valuable series and events all year-long and especially in the summer to encourage children to keep reading while school is out.  Speaking of books, head to your local Barnes and Nobles for story time.  They are usually in the day time as well as they have events already printed a month in advance to get involved in.

Your local churches may also in addition to vacation bible schools, have information on discounted programs being offered in your neighborhood.  Be creative and be vigilant.  There’s no reason why being on a budget can’t still spell fun for your kids.  Get signed up for Groupon and other saving apps.  They have many things such as discounted tickets to bounce houses, various shows, etc.

Lastly while at home, get organized.  Provide plenty of structure for your little ones.  Make each week a different theme.  Yes take a trip to the Dollar Store, Five Below and your local craft store to get things like paint, chalk, coloring books etc.  Plan each week ahead of time so you will have your materials together.  Have indoor and outdoor material ready as well. Be creative.  Don’t let the little ones sit and watch television daily.

Make each day enjoyable and remember to add some work out days.  You already working on that summer time fine, so get the kids involved.  Drink water and have water check ins to increase water intake.  Kids lead by example so get active together.  Most cable providers have workout material that is free and at your disposal.

Get together with other parents and have play dates.  Do water days where a good hose, bathing suits can provide hours of fun as well as relief from the sun.  Remember to see life from their perspective and include all sensory fun while you enjoy your summer days.

One of my most helpful tips for parents is to provide Popsicles or make some of your own.  Yes this inexpensive treat is one of the best ways to step into summer.

Dos and Don’ts

Do NOT leave kids in hot cars unattended

-This shouldn’t have to be said but the cause of heat related injuries and deaths of children is due to the carelessness of parents who leave young kids left in hot cars. A few minutes can spell disaster.  Don’t want to take the little ones into the store, simple don’t go or order online.

Do NOT allow your children to go out in places without adult supervision.

Unfortunately as kids are out trying to enjoy their fun there are many irresponsible and disgusting adults that want to take advantage.

-Do NOT allow your children to drink too many sugary drinks and sodas.  This should be a treat and not a staple.  Encourage more water intake as heat exhaustion is real even for little people.

Be wise overall in the summer time, increase sun block every time your children are exposed to the sun.  Taper off some daytime outside play when the sun is really high.

Do ENJOY your time with your children.  Remember it’s all about creating memories.

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