Aug 19, 2017

5 Spirit Lifting Inspirational Songs

Music is said to be the universal language. I've always been one to believe that the three most fundamental things to understanding and embracing worldly culture are music, food and fashion. So it is by no surprise that all three of these art driven expressions help to bring tremendous balance to my life. My music choices are as versatile as my fashion. There is a little bit of everything in my iTunes library, and I do mean everything. So please don't judge me when you see me riding out to my trap music. LOL. My music choice at any given time is driven by my mood and what inspires me at the present moment. But when I'm stuck in a rut and inspiration calls--- I can turn to any of the below songs for that extra boost of inspiration. what are some of your favorite inspirational tunes?
PLAYLIST: Blessed - Patti Labelle | Optimistic - Sounds of Blackness | Get Up Get Out - Goodie Mob | Try Again - Aaliyah | Stronger - Kanye West | Survivor - Destiny's Child | I Can - Nas |  Keep Your Head Up - 2Pac | Everything is Everything - Lauryn Hill | The Day After - Goodie Mob

Okay, so it was a bit hard to just leave you with just five--- so I threw in a few extras. To all my moms, I hope you have some great plans for the weekend. I'm just going to soak in some much needed sun at the beach. Until next time....Peace, Love Blessings!

Aug 12, 2017

5 Things to Consider for Your Next Dinner Party

I can't tell you how many dinner parties I've attended in the past that turned into a night of misery for both guests and host(s). What started out as a night of fun and entertainment seemingly ends up as a night of hassle and irritation. Don't get me wrong---I love a good outing, meal and amazing company. But I am extremely particular as to whom I enjoy my time with now as a thirty-something. So the next time you plan on hosting a dinner party (especially at a public restaurant)--please consider these five things first. They will help alleviate any confusion and headaches.

1. Choose Your Guests Wisely - Ever show up to a dinner party and say to yourself, who are these people? Before you send out invites, make sure to choose friends with similar interest and commonalities. Nobody wants to be stuck in an intimate setting for hours with strangers who have zero in common. 
2. Set the ExpectationsAvoid surprises. Let your guests know what to expect for the evening. This includes any activities (games, guest participation, announcements) set to take place during the dinner. It would also be wise to give the guests a heads up on dinner prices should the dinner take place at a restaurant and should each guest be responsible for footing their own bill. 
3. Be Prepared to Pay - There may very well be discrepancies in the final bill. Yep, this happens and you've got to be prepared to foot the bill or a portion of it if need be. 
4. Food Options - Not everyone can eat a 14oz ribeye Oscar style so you've better have options for the vegans, vegetarians and gluten-free.
5. Allocate Enough Time - Whether private or public, dinner parties take time. So plan well and allocate enough time for arrivals, dinner and wrap-up----and being respectful of your guests' time by not scheduling your dinner too late in the evening. 

Aug 4, 2017

Summer 17: Family Vacation with Carnival Cruise Line

This summer I had the pleasure of sailing the Caribbean seas with Carnival Cruise Line. The family and I boarded the Carnival Splendor vessel for 8 days to explore four Caribbean islands including St. Kitts, St. Maarten, Puerto Rico and Turks & Caicos. Although I'm no rookie to the cruising experience---by far this time around was the best. Initially I thought 8 days would be too much time on a boat ---but on the 8th day I was sadden to return to Port Everglades, Ft. Lauderdale (departure port). And just like that, it was over. Our mindless, easy-going Caribbean voyage had ended. No more PiƱa coladas, endless sunshine and Caribbean blue seas. If you've never cruised before--stay tuned for my upcoming post on: 5 Reasons to Cruise with Carnival. Cruising to me is what a true vacation should be. Fun and hassle-free.

Jul 17, 2017

Simplicity: The Secret to a Good Life

Fresh off my family vacation and looking back in reflection with a fresh perspective. Spending time outside of our comfort zone allows us to get a different perspective on life. It fosters growth and in some cases life changing redirection. I had the pleasure of visiting four island nations during my time abroad and the main take away from my trip is: simplicity, it is the secret to a good life. Each island that I visited reminded me just how important it is to simplify life. Sometimes we create complicated lives for the sake of having more, when in actuality the road to living a good and fulfilled life is having less. A simple lifestyle attracts simple problems, requiring simple solutions. The island folks understand this. That's why the life expectancy in most Caribbean islands is higher than that of Americans. Weird right? Especially with America being the richest nation in the world. How's that for perspective? Culturally-- our priorities are different and certainly so are our lifestyles. Removing the distractions, excess and the unimportant aspects of life is what simplicity is. It's the foundation of a great and rewarding life. One that I seek to have.

Jul 3, 2017

American Dreamers: Tampa Bay Parenting Feature

Hey Fabulous--
I recently did a photo shoot for a mompreneur feature in the July issue of Tampa Bay Parenting Magazines which also featured a couple other inspiring boss moms. A piece titled: American Dreamers. When I was in high school, I ran a hustle (notice how I didn't say business?) where I would visit the homes of professionals (executives, principals and the likes) to perform clothing ironing services. Yep--I would roll through on the weekends and iron baskets of professional attire for these professional elites all the wile holding down my part-time retail job at the mall, maintaining my grades and taking part in school extracurricular activities. In retrospect, not really sure how I did it.  But undoubtedly whether I knew it then---the entrepreneur in me was born. Fast forward to today---not much has changed. Well, let's retract that. Lots have changed. Like being someone's mom and wife. And if you too are a mom, you already know that the role itself is a full-time one. But when it comes to living in your purpose, you find a way to do what you love. Even if it includes adding entrepreneur to that long and growing list of titles. You can check out the column in the July issue of Tampa Bay Parenting here

Special Thanks: Runway Translator: Writer & Stylist | Lending Luxury: Designer Gowns | Theresa NeSmith Photography: Photography | Tampa Bay Parenting Magazine