Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Be Near

I would love to share all things vacation right now but I can’t.  Maybe later.  But now, my family is going thru a very difficult time and I can’t just post as if it’s not happening.  If you know me personally then you are well aware but for those of you who are not… my sister in law, my brother’s wife is currently fighting for her life in the hospital.  I say fighting for her life because that’s exactly what she is doing.  I won’t go into detail, but it caused me to want to share something.

I haven’t had a lot of death and tragedy in my life.  I remember when my Great Grandma Josephine passed away from Leukemia in the summer of 1996.  It was the summer between 8th grade and 9th grade and it changed me forever.  I was devastated.  I was in Philly for the summer and she was in the hospital for most of June and I would go visit her but I couldn’t look at her, couldn’t touch her, I was so afraid.  She passed in July and it was truly awful for me.  I broke down during the processional and I wanted to go into the casket and get her.  Ever since then, I’ve avoided funerals and anything of the sort.  I have had a few people pass in my life and have gone to funerals for only those close, but this is the first time anything has come this close to me since the summer of 96.  I have strong faith but I’ll admit it’s being tested.  I have been at the hospital every day since getting back into town from vacation, with the exception of today.  I can feel myself rambling, so let me move on…

When bad things happen, you don’t have the right words.  No one has the right words.  If I was just in a car wreck you can’t come tell my husband, oh she’s going to be ok, everything’s going to be alright…that’s not going to make him feel better.  It’s not about the words you say.  It’s about your actions.  It’s about being near.  When someone is hurting and you don’t have the words to say, just be near.  We all face tragic events in our lives, we all know someone who has gone thru something completely unimaginable.  Sometimes when you’re in the thick of it, you don’t want to hear Annie saying the sun will come out tomorrow.  It’s true, that it will, but it’s not helping the person right then and now.  I’m the first to admit that I don’t know what to say in some situations, and that’s okay.  Just being near is what counts.

So how can you be near?

Well, physically you can be around the person in need.  In my instance, I’ve been at the hospital as much as I can.  You can feel love.  You can feel encouragement.  You can feel support.  It doesn’t take words, it takes action.

The power of social media really helps if you can’t be near physically.  Just a simple I love you or I am here for you means the world to someone who feels like their world is falling apart.

Love is a verb, which means it’s an action.  Any act of kindness or love that you can show is more than appreciated.  Sending flowers, making a meal, offering to take care of something for them, donating towards expenses, any and all of these things are great examples of being near by showing love.

If you can and are willing to donate, my brother and sister could really use some help because hospital stays, especially lengthy ones are not cheap.  I continue to pray for my sister and my brother and my niece and nephew and I trust God. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

It's Ok


In spirit of one of my favorite sections of Glamour magazine, I decided to share a few things running through my mind right now…because frankly, it’s okay because it has to be.  No other choice.

It’s ok that I’ve been a huge blog reader as of late, and not so much of a blog writer.

It’s ok that I haven’t tried to really lose weight pre-vacation. 

It’s ok that in addition to the beach, I’m looking forward to eating all that I can.

It’s ok if I’m super slacking at work because, how can you expect me to work when I’m about to go on vacation?  Seriously, I’m super productive but I’m super slacking at the same time, if that makes sense…when else am I going to read all of these blogs I’m stumbling upon?

It’s ok if every day leading up to vacation, that I’m waking up like, dang it’s not Saturday yet.

It’s ok that as the Mom, I have to do all of the packing…I accepted that a few years ago…it comes with the territory.

It’s ok that I want to call out desperately tomorrow but I’m not that girl.  And stupid work ethics aside…selfishly let’s not use up all of this time off in July…I have the rest of the year to get through.

It’s ok that my body signals to me that it’s hungry for lunch at 10am…actually this is so not ok.  But all this week, it doesn’t help that I don’t want to work, but that I’m working (or not working) hungry. 

It’s ok that I just scarfed down two Krispy Kreme donuts…thanks to my colleague who offered them to me.  Usually I respond with a resounding NO and this time I responded with GLADLY.  Smh

It’s ok that I totally just wrote this post to make me feel better about the slacktastic day week I’ve been having.

What’s even better than okay is the fact that I have made it through this day.  I’ll do better tomorrow. I have tons to do tomorrow so my day will definitely not drag both at work and home.  That’s the plan anyways : )

Friday, July 10, 2015

It's Really Working!!



Can you hear them?  Can you see them?  Or is it just me?

That’s what I hear or see when I come to the blog…by no means am I trying to keep taking these mini blog breaks…I’ve just been overworked trying to work as much overtime as possible leading up to vacation.  My vacation begins in 8 days.  In 8 days we will head to the shark land and enjoy a much needed, much anticipated week at the beach.  I absolutely cannot wait!!!

Seems like every other day my state is making National news about these shark attacks.  Would love to say it makes it better that I won’t be in NC…but I’ll be in SC and that doesn’t make it better lol.  But I have no fear.  I just won’t go out as far and be very mindful, and I’ve never been one for being near a pier…that just doesn’t make sense to me, to swim where people are fishing, but hey, it’s just me, you do whatever you want!


And maybe it’s just me, but isn’t it a coinkydink that all of these shark attacks were happening right before Shark week? Lol

Anywho… I have heard the tumbleweeds blow past my blog and I decided to share some of the good things that’ve been happening in my life and hopefully I can’t get back on the blog train. 

I’ve shared before some of the things that I’ve consciously manifested with the law of attraction…you may recall my Sam’s Club membership or my beach trips from last summer and those were really great, but in the past couple of weeks I’ve really been able to bring things into my life.  I’m excited to share and excited to continue to share in the future as I truly get a grasp of this thing.

Now let me say that I am not a law of attraction teacher or guide or anything like that…but in my years of learning little tidbits, there weren’t always a lot of sources for inspiration, like when I was looking for hair styles for my daughter a few years ago there were hardly any blogs and videos about little black girl hairstyles and now they’re all over the place…long run on sentence to say that I’m just sharing my stories, not a teacher…if you’re looking for a teacher then I introduce you to my friends Melody and Kelli.  You’re welcome.

I will say that one of the most important things one must fully understand when deliberately manifesting what you want in your life, is to feel good now.  And that my friends, has probably been the hardest aspect for me.  I can have the faith, I can put the desire out there, heck, I can even let it go and release it, (for the most part), but where I was struggling the most was in the “feeling great now as if you already have it”.  What I failed to realize in years past was that I was still putting out a feeling of “I don’t have it yet”  “I really need it though, why don’t I have it yet”  And that my friends, will keep you in the same spot.

I’m not perfect at it, but I can tell that I’m getting better at it because I’ve begun to see real tangible manifestations and it makes me excited!  It really got the ball rolling for me and when good things are happening it’s easier to stay in this good vibe and continue to attract great things into your life.  In order to keep this from turning into a short story… I’ll just briefly list the things I have manifested in the past few weeks:

*my first real lottery win $100
*same week won $25
*received an expected check in the mail $82
*received an unexpected check in the mail $278
*received an unexpected $100

yes, this is my ticket and I could of wiped all the specks off lol 

And that’s just to name a few things!  I’m really excited about what I have brought into my life and all that I will continue to bring in.  Right now I’m working on something and the last item I listed, I received today as part of an experiment I’m doing.  I will report back very soon, but I cannot guarantee it will be before our week at the beach…then again, who knows, I may be inspired!!!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

My First Erin Condren Life Planner

I am beyond over the moon excited right now!!!  I recently ordered my very first Erin Condren life planner and it came this weekend!  I had never heard of an Erin Condren anything about a month or so ago.  I had watched a YouTube video of one of my old time faves Dulce Candy and she showed her Erin Condren life planner and I was instantly hooked.  In high school and college I was always best with my student planner and as I got out of school I just never could find a planner that worked as well as my student planners did.  I have tried to use my phone and it’s great for so many things but not for the way I like to keep organized.  These are definitely worth the price of $50 in my opinion.  But before I get too far ahead of myself, let me digress.

I'm sold on the packaging

These are very personalized calendars/planners and even if they weren’t I still love the message they give each time you open it.  When I watched the video on YouTube, the calendars were on sale for $30.  I went to the website and they had so many cute ones to choose from and personalizations available.  They were on sale because, of course, we’re already at that point, more than a quarter into the year.  I didn’t buy at that time and probably a couple of days later when I went back to the site, they were all out.  I was pretty bummed that I had missed out and would have to wait until later in the year to order my planner for 2016.  I decided to sign up for their newsletter so that I would be kept in the know.

I took the "stronger" sticker and put it on the back of my planner

The other day, I got an email that there were some “Ready to Ship” or pre-made life planners available for sale now for only $25.  So I checked it out.  I wanted to be sure I wasn’t being short changed.  I jumped on the deal pretty much immediately!  Yes it’s pre-made, but that’s okay.  I wanted it that badly because I only see my year getting busier and I want to be able to stay on top of it all.  It came with a coupon code for a free cover personalization which I thought was cool.  I will be using that for sure.

attention to detail 

Because of how fast the last offer went, I decided to do something for myself for once.  I had planned to use my Ibotta money for holiday shopping, and I still will; but with how much I’ve been earning, I decided to transfer the balance to my PayPal and order my life planner.  I’m so happy with the decision and it gives me even more reason to use my Ibotta app  to make money so that I can treat myself from time to time.  I deserve it : )

ahhhhh the unboxing!

just a sneak peak at the typical layout

Here’s a video from Erin Condren explaining the life planner.

To discover Erin Condren life planners and all of her goodies, click  Get $10 off!!!

Right before I uploaded my post, Erin posted a detailed video about the 2016 life planner that launches on June 9th!!!

Now I must find me the perfect handbag to house my perfect life planner : )  I need a new bag regardless, and this is the perfect excuse!  I will probably do a post in a month or so, or when I’m ready to order my 2016 life planner, to show how I use my planner.  It’s actually pretty crazy how I have seen people go all the way to the left in how they design their planner.  I am excited to get a few stickers from some shops on Etsy but that’s where my creativity will stop : )

~this post contains affiliate links

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Easy Dinner Ideas

I have been trying to shake things up a bit when it comes to dinner ideas for the family.  I’m tired of making the same old things and they’re tired of eating the same old things.  As I shared in my favorites post, I want to get more cookbooks, but in the meantime I’ve been scouring one of my favorite websites, Pioneer Woman Cooks, for the past couple of weeks; looking for recipes that I think the family will eat and that I am capable of making : ) 

Ree Drummond is one of my favorite people  : )  A dear friend in my head.  I love her food and confessional blogs and I love her show.  When I watch her show I feel comforted even when she’s making things I would never eat.  I can’t wait to get her cookbooks.  In the meantime, her food blog is the best I’ve seen.  I appreciate that she breaks it down with pictures for people like me, who need to see everything step by step.  I wanted to share a few of the recipes that I’ve tried in the past week or so that my family and I have really enjoyed.  

Blogs by Aria

This was super easy to make and the family enjoyed it.  I didn’t eat it, but tasted it, and it was good, but I’m keeping it low on the carb intake and ate something else.  The only complaint, was more meat, less pasta from man of the house, so I’ll keep that in mind next time.


Yeah, I’m sure many people have made this and do so all the time and this is like making eggs to them…but to me, honey I’ve just hit a gold mine!!!  We all absolutely loved it!!!  This is in my repertoire for sure and it’s super easy so much so that I don’t have to look at the recipe again.  We don’t do onions and peppers in this family and it seems as if every recipe Ree has includes onions.  I know they can add flavor, so I did slice very finely a very small piece of an onion and I don’t think anybody noticed ;-) I did, but it wasn’t horrible : )


To be honest, the crowd was mixed on this one…my son and I liked it, my daughter didn’t care for it and my husband didn’t understand the presentation.  I thought the chicken marinade was delicious, I didn’t even marinate mine for the whole hour as instructed and it was still tasty.  I liked the bacon and the cheese on top, similar to what I’ve seen in chain restaurants.  So I will make this again because I like it and when two out of four like a dish, it stays on the drawing board.


I actually tried this recipe a while back, like several months back and it was a huge hit!!!  We loved how cheesy and delicious it was and the kids even asked for seconds, which is a huge deal.  With this meal, you want to buy fresh mozzarella and fresh parmesan cheese, not the pre-shredded stuff, it melts differently, trust me (after Ree told me to trust her lol) it’s worth it.

If you are cooking for a family such as mine, where it’s very hard to please everyone, I suggest giving these easy meals a try.  I mean, my husband won’t eat casseroles of any kind, my son eats better than my daughter but they’re both picky in different ways and if I’m strict in my own eating, I’m not eating anything that they eat!  Pasta works for them and not for me, but I’m all about pleasing them when it comes to food.  My job is to feed my family and it’s always nice to hear “mmm this is good Mommy” instead of, “do I have to eat it all?”  Suffice it to say, you might find that one of these options may be a hit out of the park with your brood.  I’m on the hunt for even more to try!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

April - May Favorites

Editor’s note:  It’s a pure shame that these were actually for the month of April and here it is the end of May and I’m just now finishing this post.  But I had to share!  And I have different ideas for May…or June : ) 

Sometimes I want to share things that I get or use but oftentimes I don’t remember to, or can’t find a way to incorporate them into their own post…so I decided to do monthly favorites.  The goal would be the term monthly, but one shouldn’t make promises they can’t ensure they can keep.

Anyway, onto my favorites for the month:

1.    Forever Fragrant. 
I’ll be honest.  I am a fan of home shopping.  I love watching QVC.  Like literally just watching.  I learn so much.  (and want so much)  One of these days I will be able to buy anything that I want up there.  I watch HSN very rarely, although I used to watch it equally as often as QVC.  One night I was flipping through the channels, and as I did I saw these Forever Fragrant on the tv.  It was the todays special value and it was the final presentation and it was selling out fragrance choices fast!  I have purchased products from Joy Magono before and I knew this was what I was looking for.  So when I saw this I grabbed it….before I even saw the full presentation.

2.    Byron Cage
My Mom put me on to Byron Cage last summer.  I had been listening to him a lot on Pandora lately and decided that I wanted to buy a few of his cd’s so I can listen to them in my car.  Trying to find gospel CDs is like trying to find a needle in a haystack around here.  So I went on Amazon and got several CDs for way less than I could get in a store, and two of them were from Byron Cage.  And I keep them playing in my car constantly!  Such a blessing to my soul!  I can’t wait to get even more : )

3.    You Can and You Will by Pastor Joel Osteen

This is my first book that I’ve purchased from Pastor Joel.  It’s very easy reading and it’s a lot of what is in his sermons just organized and put in print.  Things I already know but needed to hear again and I’m truly grateful for this book.  It’s taken me months to get through it, but it was worth it to read it as I could and not rush through it.  I am looking forward to getting more books from him and from Victoria Osteen also.

4.    The Every Man Driver

I like to watch YouTube videos on my future Toyota Highlander.  I enjoy reviews from different people.  Sometimes I’ll look up other cars just to see if I would like them.  I stumbled upon Dave Erickson on The EveryMan Driver and I really like his style, his voice isn’t annoying, and his personality is cool.  So I hit subscribe.  I like watching his videos even when they’re about cars, trucks, and even minivans that I would never want to buy, yet I enjoy seeing what they’re like on the inside.  I really enjoy his videos.  He’s very thorough and I like that and he doesn’t annoy me.  Win win.

5.    Barnes and Nobles/In the Kitchen with David
Barnes and Noble is one of my favorite places…and my daughter’s too.  While there to get my daughter a book for her birthday, I was looking in the discount section and stumbled upon David Venable’s cookbook.  I really enjoy watching him on QVC on his In the Kitchen with David show and I have seen some of his cooking and I knew this would be a great investment at a whopping $6.28 (originally $30!!)

I want to buy more cookbooks.

Whew! So there you have it!  My first monthly favorites and I had fun sharing them with you.  We must meet again like this soon, perhaps, next month? ;-) 

Saturday, May 23, 2015



I have been such a super slack blogger lately.  And by lately, I mean for like half a year or more.  I’m sorry.  It’s not that I don’t love to blog, because I do…it’s just…a few things really.  I prefer not to blog if I’m not in a great space.  And it’s not that I’ve been depressed or anything, because I haven’t, it’s just that…idk I am kinda just going thru my journey and just nothing big enough to update I guess.  Guess nothing has been blogworthy so to speak.

Work is kicking my butt.  That’s putting it mildly.  Apparently I have discovered that I have a complex. Ha!  I have many!  But this is about learning something new.  I like to learn new things…in theory.  In reality, I would like to go from a novice to an expert in the span of three weeks.  I know, I’m totally reasonable.  :-)  It’s difficult for me, I’m learning, to go from a position where I knew my job in and out and I was the one being asked questions to a position where there’s a learning curve and I am the one asking the questions.  I know in time I will be the expert that I know I can be, and be confident in my ability and be worthy of the praise they’ve given me.  It’s really all in my perspective I suppose.

Work is also kicking my butt because of working overtime.  I’m trying to find the right schedule that works for me and my family.  In the meantime, I’m plum exhausted.  Everything falls out of sync when I’m not getting enough sleep.  Add to that the fact that my job is mentally challenging and exhausting and I’ve just been a ball of blah.  If that makes any sense at all.

What I think is worse than blogging negatively so to speak, is not blogging at all…and that my friends is what has happened.  And like I’ve said, I haven’t been depressed or anything like that, but I just haven’t really felt the urge to blog.  That’s a disservice not only to my readers but to myself.  I started blogging because it’s therapeutic and I enjoy it.  It’s my hobby.  It’s my passion.  But you wouldn’t think that by how few and far between I’ve been posting.  Not only do I actually like the act of blogging, because it is writing, and deep down I’ve always wanted to be a writer; but I like to read my blogs.  I like to look back on where I was and I learn about myself through re-reading my blog posts.  So I’m carving out time to blog, just like I’m doing with working out…because with it in my life I’m a happier person and without it I’m grumpier.  Both relieve stress for me and both have been absent or not consistent for long enough.


She’s back!!!

For real this time!!! ; )

Saturday, April 4, 2015

I Got The Job

It’s been 37 days since my last blog post.  It hadn’t been intentional, but eventually I figured why not just wait until my fast was over before I pop back up on the blog.  My fast just ended yesterday.  It began February 24th and went thru April 4th.  It’s a big step for me.

I participated in my first fast last year.  I did it on my own as a way to seek God, to hear from Him, and to get closer to Him.  Last year I believe I did it for two weeks and I gave up sodas, fast food and social media.  I read my devotionals daily, read more Bible and listened exclusively to gospel music.  I felt I really grew in my faith and walk.  I did it on my own and not with the church.

This year I decided to do it with the church.  I am a member now and I agree with my church’s vision and wanted to participate in this fast.  It hasn’t always been easy.  I got up for morning prayer at 6:33 every day except Sundays.  I really felt that I was growing closer.  I am so glad I did the fast.

Now in my last fast, I had some personal gains so to speak.  I had two different jobs that I made it to the second round of interviews for.  Close but no cigar.  This time around, I had an inkling in my spirit that by the end of the fast, something big was going to come to pass.  I had a hunch it would be that I would change positions at work, but of course, couldn’t be sure.  Well, thankfully, my hunch was right!!!

And it happened so fast!!!

Within the past few weeks, I applied, phone screened, panel interviewed, was offered and accepted a new position at my company!!!!  I am sooooo very happy to say that as of Monday, I am in a new department in my new position and I am truly happy and thankful and grateful!!!  God is so good!!!!!


Last week felt like my last week of high school.  Like all I am doing is coming to class in order to graduate… all of the exams have been taken and it’s just a waiting game until the weekend.  It felt super awesome!!!


Like I am not burdened with any thoughts about my past job.  No dreading going to work.  Work is work, I know, but guys, I just can’t even put this into words how awesome this feels!!! 


It’s in the department that I wanted from the beginning.  It uses my degree.  It has tons of opportunity for growth.  It’s exactly what I’ve wanted.  It’s truly a blessing and I am truly grateful.  I know that from here, it’s going to get even better : )   Thank you Lord!!!


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