MY LIFE: Sharing life with Act Like a GRRRL

During my birthday month, I love doing a bit of community service, before getting gifts. That’s why I was excited when the director of Act Like a GRRRL asked me to speak to the students. After our session the ladies even ‘blessed’ me with GODDESS status. What a sweet way I start my birthday week!

The ladies welcomed me into their creative space and allowed me to share my passion for writing and blogging. My goal was to leave the young women feeling confident enough to share their art with the world.

I shared my love of writing, blogging, and fashion, reminding them that you can be good at more than one thing. Don’t be afraid of your greatness, but always use it to help others.

We then participated in a writing prompt, something I do when I have writers block. The prompt I shared was, “Describe your favorite smell”. The ladies journaled for a bit and we shared our entries. I loved the stories the young people shared.

It’s always nice to know that the next generation is in good hands. The team at Act Like A GRRRL encourage creativity and individuality while creating a safe space for girls to learn and express themselves. I was happy to be apart of their summer experience as an official Nashville Author!

Are you a creative who’d like to share your story with the Act Like a GRRRL participants? Click HERE for more info.

#DIY: I tinted my eyebrows!

If you’ve been following me on Instagram for any amount of time, you’ve heard me complain about my struggle brows! Girl, my brows are so thin, sparse, and struggly that I hate stepping out the house without filling them in. I used to go to a professional brow tech, but now she only specializes in Microblading (Shala is the best brow tech in the south, go to her!) However, I’m on a budget. Microblading isn’t on the menu, so I did the next best thing, brow tinting

Continue reading “#DIY: I tinted my eyebrows!”

Hello June: The Art of Asking for Help

It’s June! My favorite month of the year! Why? It’s my birthday month! This month I’m exploring the art of asking for help. It’s truly an art to figure out the things you NEED then researching places/people to ask for help. You may get rejected, but at least you tried. This is not about begging, this is about strategic moves to improve your life outcomes. It’s scary, but worth it. Continue reading “Hello June: The Art of Asking for Help”

MY CITY: Louie’s Wine Dive, Nashville, might be your new fave spot!

Louie’s Wine Dive – Nashville, is poised to be your newest after-work hang-out! I love being introduced to new spots in Nashville, and believe me, we have PLENTY of new spots popping up in the city. Last night, the team at Louie’s Wine Dive invited a bunch of influencers to sample their amazing locally-sourced menu as well as their extensive wine collection. Y’all, you are gonna love this spot! If you love wine, you’ll love it even more!

Continue reading “MY CITY: Louie’s Wine Dive, Nashville, might be your new fave spot!”

MY LIFE: One Month Fitness Update

Last month, I restarted my fitness journey. To keep me accountable, I thought I’d share my monthly updates on the blog. Although I started a bit unsure of my journey, I’m happy to say we are on the right track and getting more for everyday! Below, I share details of my first four weeks of fitness.

Continue reading “MY LIFE: One Month Fitness Update”

The #RoyalWedding FAB moments!

Yes, I was one of those people who woke up at 5am to watch The Royal Wedding! The wedding of Harry and Meghan was one of the MOST watched events of 2018. People who don’t like the pomp & circumstance of weddings or care about the ROYAL family were moved by Harry and Meghan’s wedding. So, let’s talk about my favorite moments from this morning’s ceremony.

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Prince Harry and Prince William arrive at the Royal Wedding

The Prince Harry and his brother, wearing traditional military dress for the ceremony. I love the bond that these two share. I’m sure I’m not the only one who wished their mother Princess Diana was still alive to see her boys all grown up!

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Meghan and her Mother, Doria Ragland arrive at the church.

The first glimpse we received of Meghan and her Mother riding to the cathedral. We hadn’t seen the whole dress yet, but we were already enthralled by the classically chic boat-neck bodice and beautiful veil. Her tiara was loaned to her by the Duchess’ new Grandmother-in-Law, Queen Elizabeth: “the Queen Mary Diamond Bandeau. According to Kensington Palace, the English tiara, which features diamonds set in platinum, was made in 1932 and features a center detachable brooch made of ten diamonds dating back to 1893.” (source)

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Princess Meghan arrives at the cathedral

Ugh! Take our breath away! Meghan paused at the entrance of the cathedral meeting the clergy man, her veil held by her adorable pageboys. Megan wore a custom silk Givenchy gown. Her silk veil was hand stitched with 53 flowers representing the 53 countries of the commonwealth. Amazing attention to detail.

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Prince Charles walks Meghan down the aisle

Meghan and Harry’s wedding is an example of being yourself while being respectful to family heritage. Although, Meghan’s father resigned attending the ceremony, Prince Charles walked her down the aisle. Certainly, not the tradition, but definitely respectful and loving.

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Bishop Curry took us to church!

This Bishop gave me LIFE! Chicago Bishop, Michael Curry, quoted MLK and talked about the power of Love. He was definitely bought a different ‘vibe’ to a royal wedding but it was a welcomed change. Hand selected, by Meghan, Bishop Curry gave us an A & B selection! I wanted to send him an offering!

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This amazing choir bough soul to the ceremony

Y’all! This BLACK AF choir was a supreme surprise! The was the Kingdom Choir led by Karen Gibson. They are one of the most renowned choirs in the world! Their rendition of “Stand By Me” was an amazing nod to love and Meghan’s blackness.

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The beautiful couple are pronounced Man & Wife

Aww! Meghan and Harry looked genuinely excited to be marrying each other. It was a joy to watch this gorgeous couple bring new meaning to the royal family’s lineage.

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The kiss seals the deal!
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Princess Meghan’s bouquet hand selected by her new hubby!

My goodness, it was a great morning to wake up early. With all the tragedy in the world, seeing a love like Meghan and Harry’s be displayed was a glimpse of hope. It’s said the couple will postpone their honeymoon to start their charity work in the commonwealth. Meghan is very strong in her heritage and doesn’t shy away from comments about being bi-racial. I can only hope that their union can bring some change to the lineage of privilege in the royal family.

Congratulations to the new Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and Princess Meghan!

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EVENT: Come to the ‘Jack and Ahlia’ Book Club!

On May 12th and 26th I’m hosting the Jack and Ahlia book club! Yeah! For those who want to discuss the twists and turns of your favorite pair of best friends in my newest book, it’s time! Since publishing the book in January, I’ve received messages, texts, and emails about the tumultuous characters. Jack and Ahlias ‘will they, won’t they’ dance has readers siding with their favorite character as if the Jack and Ahlia were real people!

RSVP ON EVENTBRITE

The event is free! Just bring your book, your friend, and argument about who’s the best in this hot mess fest! On May 12th we’ll discuss part one, then May 26th we’ll discuss part two. Join us at Oasis Center in Midtown Nashville, 3p. We’ll have tasty treats and great convo!

Need a book, purchase via Amazon

BEST DRESSED: Met Gala 2018

The first Monday in May, it’s Met Gala day! Today is the day we get to judge celebrities who earn much more than us while they attend an event that is more expensive than a semester at college! But for real though, the Met Gala red carpet is one of my favorite carpets of the year. It’s the time when couture fashion can be center stage! The bigger the better. The more beads the better. Just do the most! But stay on theme!

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Christian Lacroix Haute Couture

This year’s Met Gala theme is: “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination.” Attendees need to rely heavily on religious influence for their looks! Especially Catholicism, seeing as this year’s exhibit has been approved by the Vatican! Tickets are $30,000 a pop and proceeds go towards the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Heavenly Bodies Exhibit is on display through the summer.

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The queen and the co-chair of the 2018 Met Gala, Rihanna!

But lets get to my choices for Best Dressed this year! My selections are based on those celebs who stuck to the theme, bought the FAB, and just made me smile! Let’s go!

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Rihanna wore Pope inspired Maison Margiela

Rihanna came through and put the pope to SHAME! I mean, I don’t know when she started slaying the Met Gala, but when she popped, she just didn’t stop! Good Lord!

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Serena Van Der Woodson . . . er, Blake Lively!

Blake Lively, my personal fashion queen, hit the scene wearing custom Versace. It’s said that designers worked for more than 600 hours on her look. She wore a half-million dollars worth of jewelry! Whew!

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Cardi B dripping in pearls!

Queen Cardi and Baby Bardie attended their first Met Gala wearing this embellished Jeremy Scott gown. OMG! Cardi looked amazing and really happy. I hope she had fun, because she was the best dressed for me!

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Zendaya, can I please have my edges!

If Rihanna is the Queen of the Met Gala, then Zendaya is the princess. Seriously, she and her team ALWAYS get it right. This is Zendaya’s fourth appearance at the Gala and she killed it in this Versace chain mail ensemble, channeling Joan of Arc.

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Don’t be fooled by the rocks that she got!

JLo can’t stop! She came to the party dressed in Balmain depicting a stain glassed window in a cathedral! OK NOW! And, can we talk about her toned legs? GEESH!

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All Gold everything for the King of Wakanda

Very rarely, men get it right on ANY red carpet. Male celebs don’t step out of the box, no matter what the theme. But our fave, Chadwick Boseman, took it to the next level wearing this amazing look.

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She put a bow on her ponytail, I’ll let it pass.

Ariana Grande gave us art at the museum show with this strapless Vera Wang dress depicting Michelangelo’s Last Judgement. The songstress looked ethereal!

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Golden Barbie, wearing GOLD!

Instagram Influencer turned model/actress, Jasmine Sander, aka @golden_barbie, attended her first Met Gala draped in an H&M (hmmm) molten gold dress.

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Last, but certainly not least, is Alek Wek wearing another H&M custom gown featuring a mosaic inspired cape. Hand beading, gems, and pearls, made her dress one of the most opulent on the red carpet.

As I pull up my pajama pants and put on my nerd glasses, I’m happy that most of the celebs stuck to the theme. I expected to see more nunnery inspired looks, but I was happy to read the stories behind the designs.

Who wore your fave look? Comment below.

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MY LIFE: Scared to start again

I’m sorry (but not sorry) I haven’t written a new blog post in two weeks. I needed a break. Plus, I’m always telling my Blogger Baes to take breaks, but I never take a break. What kind of advice is that. But I’m back and I got a good topic this week: WEIGHT-LOSS!

I was scared to write this post because I’ve written this type of post about 50 times. It’s the post where I declare I’m gonna get fit (or snatched, steal-yo-daddy sized, skinny!). I’m scared to write this post because I’ve accomplished this goal a couple times and I’ve failed plenty more. I’m scared to start this journey again because I’m scared I’ll fail. But I’m tired of hoping to wake up smaller and more fit. I know I need to try again. I’m worth it.

As an adult, the smallest number I’ve seen on the scale was 297 lbs. Now, I know a couple of y’all edges just flew off because that’s still considered ‘big’. I mean, that’s bigger than some football players. But, the way my body (pear shaped) and my height (6ft tall) works, it looked GOOD. As a plus-sized woman and BLOGGER, I always feel pressure to talk about my weight. Either we should be talking about losing weight or talking about how happy we are to be big. What if you are stuck in the middle: a little bit happy, a little bit scared, and a little bit over-it in general? That’s me.

See, I’ve been a BIG GIRL all my life and I’ve never seen a day where I’ve been considered THIN or SKINNY. Came in this world at almost 10lbs and 21″. I was taller than most classmates AND teachers until high-school; thank God those boys started to grow! Then when I got to college, I actually lost a bunch of weight. I was poor, hungry, and I worked a lot. I came home and my family was so proud of my weight-loss – not much mention about those good grades (more on that later). Then I graduated and got a job: free corporate lunch and spending money. I got big again. Biggest I’d ever been (until now). To my luck, I found an amazing job at the YMCA. That job afforded me free gym membership and access to the internet. I was printing off recipes and working out five times a week, sometimes doing two-a-days. Girl, I was FIT!!!!! I could see two ab muscles!

Y’all! Snatched!

Then, my grandma died, I started grad school, and I broke up with a long time ‘on again, off again’ boyfriend (This was the base of Jack & Ahlia‘s childhood story). I was stressed and crushed. I gained the weight back. Partly because grad school was so time consuming and I was, yet again, struggling with money. But, wanting to look good at graduation, I snapped back into gym life and lost a nice bit of weight.

Fast forward to now, Yup, I’m big again. I’m 5lbs bigger than I’ve ever been! Whew just typing that gave me the vapors. My clothes fit weird, my face is chunky, and wearing heels makes my knees hurt. In the past three years I’ve gone through a lot: death of a partner, leaving a job, horrendous money issues, loss of friends, and general depression. Still, I’ve taken these photos, wrote this blog, and posed for my life. Seriously, if it wasn’t for the blog and you guys, my readers, I’d be in a PIT of despair.

As the title states, I was scared to start again. Like really. For the most part, I’m a pretty confident girl, but even I can see the surprise on the faces of people who haven’t seen me in a long time. That, “you look nice, but wow you’re much bigger than I thought!” look. I saw it when i went home for Christmas. I saw it when I went to recent fashion event. I’m tired of seeing that face. I’m ready to be comfortable in my body. The only thing that helps is knowing, if I did it before, I can do it again.

I’m turning 40 in June. In my mind I want to take these epically gorgeous 40th Birthday Photos. Now, I know science and math, it’s just April, no way I’ll be at my goal weight by my birthday. But I want to walk into my birthday month feeling strong and consistent. I may be down 20lbs or just 10lbs. Either way, I’ll be back on the wagon and feeling better. I know I can do this!

Are you starting a weight loss, fitness, or health journey? Let me know how you feel about starting again. I’ll share updates on my socials and I may even bring back my YouTube channel! Either way, I’ll keep you posted. I’m not scared anymore!

Oh yeah, I already have my plan. I know what to eat and how to work out. Different plans work for different people. I know you want to leave your miracle plan in the comments but I’m GOOD on that. I’ve consulted my doctor and done my googles.

MOTIVATION: If it shoulda’ been you, it woulda’ been you!

If you follow me on Instagram, @fabglance, you have been hearing me talk about how I’m overcoming the FEAR OF MISSING OUT – #FOMO.

Listen, at one time your girl was ALWAYS on the scene. Always. If something was happening, I was there. But after quitting my job last year, trying to find myself, having a bunch of fails, and eventually finding my way back to balancing working and blogging, I had a fear that people wouldn’t care about the FABGLANCE lifestyle anymore. I found myself looking at other people’s Instagram posts saying, “It should have been me!”

Then Jesus came for my neck and was like “GIRL, get your mind right! If it should have been you, it would have been you! Period.

Fear of missing out or FoMO is “a pervasive apprehension that others might be having rewarding experiences from which one is absent”. This social anxiety is characterized by “a desire to stay continually connected with what others are doing”. (source)

I know I’m not the only person who has uttered the words, “It should have been me.” Once you set yourself on that road, you start comparing your gifts and abilities to someone else. And, girl, you about to head down a slippery slope. You’re about to head into the world of jealousy, anxiety, depression, and anger. In this world of social media and blogging (and just living life), it’s hard to NOT compare. It’s hard not being the first to know and the first on the scene.

Through meditation and prayer, I was able to figure out five reasons why you don’t need to have FOMO and it probably shouldn’t have been you in the first place. Let’s get it:

  1. You weren’t qualified – Oh, this is a hard one to swallow. But the reality is, if it was you, you would have been prepared. You may not be qualified to be in the position you seek. Not saying that you can’t get there tomorrow, next month, or next year, but TODAY, you don’t have the credentials. Get to work. Then you’ll see your name on the list.
  2. You were over-qualified – On the opposite, you are TOO qualified to be in the place you think you should be. Girl, you got TOO MUCH SAUCE! Being over-qualified can be a lonely road but you are on the right track. God is prepapring your to be bigger and better than you’ve ever imagined. However, preperation often happens in hidden spaces.
  3. That’s not your track – Oh, you wanna be OVER THERE, doing THAT? Sorry, that’s not your path and that’s not your lane. That is not where you are supposed to be. When you realize this, it’s time to reevaluate your plan and seek what truly matters. Sometimes when you THINK you are supposed to be in a spot, it’s really not for you. Yeah it looks fun, but it not for you.
  4. That’s not your tribe – Yeah, not to get all mystical magical, but those people you might be idolizing – that ain’t your tribe baby! I know you feel like they are the cool clique,  I know. They are sparkly, they are fun, they look like they are supporting each other, but girl, it ain’t your tribe. Your tribe will come. It will. Also, you may have grow out of your tribe. Life is always moving and we must move with it, even if it means leaving your faves behind.
  5. God has a different plan – And this is the real deal. As a believer, I’m influenced by the bible and what it says for my life. Often, God has a totally different plan for you time and your talent! Let him guide your hustle. I swear you’ll find yourself in rooms that you only dreamed you’d be in.

Being the best is often a lonely road. You have to practice, research, and produce in spaces where you are alone. No one wants to watch you read 45 articles about “The hottest trends for Spring.” But when you get the call to be on that show where they need an expert, guess who’s ready! YOU! If you are in a lonely season and you feel like no one is calling your name, don’t fret. You aren’t missing out. You are being set up to be set apart.

Let me know, in the comments, if you’ve experienced a season like this? Let’s support each other!