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How-I-wear-White
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How To Wear A White Dress – Mistake Free!

Did You Know? The theory for the fashion rule to wear white after Memorial day started at the height of its popularity, the color white signified upper class and refinement. You wore white at summer resorts and society events, while the masses wore drab colors as they labored away. “By the 1880s, in order to tell who was acceptable and who wasn’t, the women who were already ‘in’ felt it necessary to create dozens of fashion rules that everyone in the know had to follow…That way, if a woman showed up at the opera in a dress that cost more than most Americans made in a year, but it had the wrong sleeve length, other women would know not to give her the time of day.”

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YAY! ALL WHITE EVERYTHING!

I love wearing white. The color is fresh, clean, young and classy.  I feel like white is a perfect color for any occasion and is definitely a go-to for me.

I used to fear white.  I either risk my outfit getting dirty (hello spray tan) or wearing a fabric that was see through & revealing of all my precious undergarments.

However, I fear no more! Mostly because I don’t care if either of those accidents happen, but also because I’ve mastered avoiding them.

How-I-wear-White

How I Wear White, Mistake Free:

Start with the White Dress:

I wear white shorts & pants all the time, but dresses are also an easy option.  To avoid anything see through or too revealing go for a flowy style or a piece w/layers. I avoid maxi dresses that are white & super long because that’s more fabric to get sabotaged by dirt or stains.

Add Bright Shoes:

The fun part about white is that it matches everything. I’ve been known to pull out my hot pink heels when I wear white because the pop of color adds dimension, if you ask me.  It takes away from concentrating too hard on the dress.  If you’re trying to be a little more casual, white also looks classy & pretty with a nude shoe.

And A Bright Lip:

You’re either doing a bright lip, bright shoe, or both!  This lip stain does NOT move.  Once it’s dry, you really don’t have to worry too much about getting it on your outfit. And a bright lip really pops when you’re wearing all white. I love that combo on anyone!  OoOoO la la

Classic Gold Jewelry:

Subtle gold jewelry, tan skin, and a white dress?!  Yes!  To keep it smooth & classic, go for these skinny chains. Subtle, but the perfect detail for pulling all the pieces together.  I realized when you add a simple piece of jewelry it shows effort. HA! I used to always skip little jewelry, too lazy.

Oil Up w/Avocado Oil:

This one & my next are the biggest secrets.  I’ve been using Avocado Oil as moisturizer lately, it’s not very greasy & soaks in the skin just right.  I would typically recommend a bronzing lotion because I’m obsessed with fake tans but when you’re wearing white that can be a little risky.  Avocado Oil will shine perfectly on your bronzed skin to help you glow – without risking stain.  I put oil on any skin that’s showing!  Also, if you have a spray tan, make sure you do 1 day & 1 shower before your big white moment.  That ways the tan is super stuck on your skin & won’t make your dress brown. You get it.

Never Skip the Highlighter:

The key to life throughout the summer? Highlighter.  Who doesn’t want to glow?! I put it on my shoulders & collar bone, if they’re showing.  It really helps everything POP!

And Finally, Makeup:

Less is more when it comes to wearing makeup while you’re wearing white! Especially if you’re in a hot weather area where make up tends to slide after a while.  There’s nothing worse than foundation marks on your fresh white clothing, right?!  That’s my nightmare, looks cheap & high maintenance to me.  So, I do my face routine that I do for work days – concealer, highlighter, maybe blush & a little bronzer, then my eyes.  But that’s it!  You don’t want to risk touching your face & having the product transfer to your clothes.


Welcome Memorial Day & the summer heat! Welcome! Today, I walked outside my apartment & actually had a hard time breathing because the humidity & heat was so thick it felt like I was breathing under water. (Dramatic?) Anyone else feel me?! NOT a hot person, most definitely dreaming of a thick snow storm.

Also… note, Last Man Standing was canceled. I found out the news yesterday.  I’ve only watched the entire season through about 4 times on Netflix so I was really depending on fresh, new seasons to start soon. Anyone have other light comedy sitcoms to share?  I’m totally open to cheesy.

Have a great weekend everyone!  Be thoughtful,

Xx

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5 Rules For Acceptable Bragging
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5 Rules-for-Bragging
Life, The Best You

5 Rules For Acceptable Bragging

Did You Know?  In a survey of 2,000 people, more than 75% admitted to lying about themselves on social profiles.  Only 18% said that their Twitter and Facebook profiles accurately represent them.

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There’s something about being a badass bragger that I love.

If you do it wrong, than bragging is horrifically obnoxious.

5 Rules-for-Bragging

I love hearing people talk about what they’re passionate about, what makes them happy.  Whether that was a time in their life or an event they’re currently going through.  To see them get excited & feel comfortable enough opening up is exciting.  Conversations like these really get me going.

 

But there’s also people that don’t know how to brag properly.  They’re more focused on being a show off than sharing good news.  I think if you have to glorify every part of your life & constantly talk about it, there must be some self-confidence issues going on.  (LOL I’m laughing at my physiological conclusions here, but stay with me)

 

I broke down 5 Rules To A Good Brag because I think at some point bragging is awesome, but you have to do it correctly.

Rules-for-Bragging(6) 5 Rules-for-Bragging

5 Rules-for-Bragging

5 Rules-for-Bragging

5 Rules-for-Bragging

5 Rules To Being A Badass Bragger

  1. Wait for someone to ASK YOU about something.  This rule is a little tricky because sometimes people don’t know what to ask.  But, for the most part, always wait for someone to ask about you & what you’ve been up to. If that’s your children, dog, career, vacation, relationship, boyfriend – wait for them to ask.  “How’s work going?”  “I saw you ran a marathon, was it hard?” “How’s Bernice?”  If they never ask, that’s pretty telling, they don’t give a shit. HA!  Send them to my post on: LISTENING.
  2. Shut Up.  Conversation tip across the board – Shut Up.  Don’t go on forever about anything, ever.  No matter who you are or how important the info you’re sharing is, remember to cut it off. Or at least stop, breathe, and ask for questions?
  3. Think about the WHY.  Why are you sharing?  Are you sharing because you want to feel better about yourself?  That’s not the right reason.  Are you sharing because you’re excited & want others to feel excited too?  Then brag away! But don’t brag simply so you can feel cool, or better, or special.  Brag because you’re overjoyed & want others to feel overjoyed too.
  4. Always express your GENUINE gratitude & appreciation.  This is the most important one to being a good bragger.  You have to always make sure you express how lucky you are to be married to the top RE Agent in the U.S. ( 😉 )  Or how grateful you are to travel through the African Safari for 6 months of the year.  Or how appreciative you are that you have the career of your dreams.  I don’t know what you’re bragging about, but it’s important to ALWAYS be humble while bragging.  Then others know, you know, you’re lucky.
  5. Try to include your audience.  Sometimes you might be bragging about something huge.  You’re getting married, you’re having a kid.. That’s big stuff, and likely your audience isn’t going through that large of an event to equally be able to brag about it… Still try to include them, rather than talk AT them forever.  If they have kids, or got married, try to relate or ask questions.  Help them remember those times.  Bring them in, because talking AT people is really annoying, so do your best to include them somehow.5 Rules-for-Bragging

5 Rules-for-Bragging5 Rules-for-Bragging

5 Rules-for-Bragging

 

What do you think about Bragging?!  Funny topic right?  Bragging is weird to admit because it’s so much conversation about yourself!  But it’s fun to be excited with people who are excited, so if you brag correctly – then brag away!

 

I’m off to brag to Wafiq about how I was paid today and have yet to blow it all online shopping!  I’m sharing with him because I’m excited & I’ll ask him how he’s doing on his savings so we can be proud together!  HA!

 

Have a great weekend everyone! Go out, brag away, and be thoughtful…

 

Xx


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Story Telling - Aliens
Life, Story Telling

The Story Of: The Time I Found Out Aliens Are Real

Did You Know?  “To prevent competitors from also inseminating female mates, some male insects stay latched to the female for days on end. The male Indian stick insect, Necroscia sparaxes, has the record in scientific literature at 79 days.”

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Hi everyone!

I have a horrific story to share…

Aliens DO exist & I now, know this for a fact.

Story Telling - Aliens

I was in my office last week and a friend came running through the doors looking for a guy to help them. (Of course, she was not looking for me in this situation, you’ll understand why later.)  She seemed a little more frantic than normal so I asked what happened.  She said there was a bug outside in the hallway.  I thought that was interesting because she’s not afraid of bugs. And she didn’t mention what type of bug. Are we talking spider, cockroach, beetle? In my almighty moment I told her I would go take a look – I’ve recently made truce with large spiders & felt I could at the very least monitor a cockroach while we wait for someone to get it, worst case scenario.

 

I went out into the hallway & a saw an alien sprinting down the wall, where the floor meets the bottom of the wall.  This mother fucker had more than 1,000 legs and was a foot long.  A centipede the size of a ruler with a 1 inch body circumference (1 INCH THICK BODY!), I’m not even talking how far it’s legs spread.    Dark color. Fast.  Agile. And foreign.  Unfortunately, I am NOT exaggerating.

 

I ran back into my office, called the 2 guys nearby and told them there was a bug in the vicinity.  I should have specified Alien because they took too long to get to the hallway and the alien proceeded to run toward the elevator shaft for safety. There wasn’t a chance in hell I was getting in it’s way either. My friend did run towards it & tried waving it away from the elevator, when said Alien lifted half it’s body & legs in the air as a warning to step the fuck away.

 

Now.  I’ve had many run ins with bugs before & am familiar with their strategies.  That asshole wasn’t going far down the elevator shaft to find a new home, he was waiting right inside it for his perfect getaway.  I tried to warn the people.  “Back away!  It’s right inside the shaft, it’s going to come back out & it can sprint!”  No one took me seriously.  They stood INSIDE the elevator to look down the shaft to search for the alien… NOT A GOOD IDEA PEOPLE.  That alien showed an entire side of tentacles out the side of the elevator shaft and everyone screamed louder than the fire alarms as they bursted out the elevator doors & quickly ran out of the entire building.  No one looked confident anymore.  The guys were panicking.  In this moment, thank God for gender roles.

 

It was at this point, everyone knew the severity of the situation.

 

Long story short, we ended up trying to electrocute the alien & then poison it with toxic spray – neither worked, of course, it has fucking alien powers.  One of the guys ended up finding a trash picker and was able to grab the alien & remove him.  It was necessary to kill it before questioning.

 

I will say, every single person was flabbergasted.  At a loss for words.  Because it did prove life beyond Earth is very real.  And it doesn’t conform to our standard of delightful by any means.

 

I’m still unable to put my feet down while sitting at my chair & am constantly on the lookout for other large aliens here on Earth.  I had vomit at the tip of my throat all day after my run in with this creature. I used to be afraid of large, flying cockroaches – I had no idea.

 

Be on guard today… and be thoughtful,

 

Xx


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Beauty

Glamglow Gravitymud Mask – I Tried It For You

Did You Know?  In Mauritania, Africa – Obesity has long been the ideal of beauty, signaling a family’s wealth in a land repeatedly wracked by drought. Nomadic people struggling to survive the harsh desert came to prize fatness as a sign of health.

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I’ve been reading beauty blogs & watching beauty YouTubers for a few years now.  They suck me in & before you know it I’m 10 videos deep with a long list of new products I NEED.  Then, I get to the store & notice the first item on my long list is .5oz of face cream that’s $90… and I have no money left for anything else.  Story of my life.

 GlamGlow-Face-Mask(2)

I’ve gotten better at prioritizing.  What’s worth the money & what isn’t.  There are bloggers/YouTubers that I’ve learned not to trust & others that I have to rush out & buy their product suggestions immediately!

Face Masks are always a big deal for me.  1 – they’re all super expensive, so experimenting isn’t very easy.   2 – They’re ideal because taking good care of my skin helps with my no makeup routine.

I noticed this silver Glamglow face mask all over the place & finally thought, fuck it.  I’ll spend the money, try it for a month, then tell you what I think.  Are the expensive face products that everyone flaunts worth it??  I’m determined to find out & this mask was the first one off the picking block.

 GlamGlow-GravityMud-Mask(1)

I went to Sephora & bought the Glamglow Gravitymud Firming Treatment Mask.  It comes in a large package but a very small jar.   Already kind of annoying considering it’s $70, but I’m committed.

The box says: “Firm, Lift, Tighten, Tone, Sexy Contours” and it’s supposed to be a solution for fine lines & wrinkles, uneven skin tone, and loss of firmness & elasticity.

I brought it home & immediately tried it.  There’s a small brush inside the box that’s super helpful with the application process, which I loved.  Once it was on my face I let it sit for 30 minutes, then proceeded to “peel” it off.

This is the part that annoys me about the mask.  Everyone is so pumped up about the mask peeling off, but it doesn’t.  I mean sure it kind of peels off if you use a super thick layer of product & carefully spend your time trying to successfully peel off as much as you can, followed by rinsing off the rest.  I’d just as well wash the whole damn thing off.  Weird for me, the “peeling” part.  Maybe the same people that enjoy popping zits would enjoy attempting to peel off a mask? Doesn’t get me going.  So, that part of the mask for me is a major fail & a dumb reason to spend money.

GlamGlow-Face-Mask

I continued to use the mask 3x a week for an entire month. Sometimes before bed, other times before applying makeup, and also in the mornings on days where I wouldn’t wear makeup. I should mention, the little jar of product does last awhile & it’s a more comfortable mask to wear with a yummy sent.

Once I took the mask off, my skin felt fresh & a little gummy.  In a good way, almost like a dewy primer.  That part I liked.

Overall, I think this mask is good when you have somewhere to go.  Keep in your drawer for the days you have an event to go to or you’re traveling & need a wake up for your face.  After a month, I didn’t notice any super noticeable differences in fine lines or firmness.  Unless I used the mask that day or night before, my face doesn’t look or feel any different than before I bought the little jar.  You know what I mean?  It was nice to have for the day, but it’s not a miracle worker long term.

Would I buy it again? Maybe.  I can see where it’s nice to have in the rotation of your face products but I don’t see what the rage is about the mask.  I wish I could rage about it.  I’m going to try a few other Glamglow masks that also have positive reviews & see if there’s one that really makes me a believer.  I’d be happy to report back.

GlamGlow-GravityMud-Mask(1)

For now, you’re not alone if you don’t buy the magic, silver peel off mask. The mask is ok.  But it’s not the fountain of youth.

Does anyone have mask recommendations? I have a few that I actually do love, but am always looking for more!

Have a great day today & be thoughtful,

Xx

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Amazon Picks, Beauty, Life

10 Amazon Products Under $10

Did You Know? Amazon began in the garage of founder Jeff Bezos’ home in Washington State. The site was launched on July 16 1995

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Like I’ve mentioned before, the one complaint I have about Amazon is the browsing options.    You can’t really get on Amazon & browse through it like you would at a store or another website.  You have to know what you’re looking for in order for Amazon to be useful.  That’s why I like sharing what I buy.

Today’s list is 10 Under $10.

I tried to keep all of the items Prime eligible so you don’t end up paying for shipping, if you’re a Prime member that is – which at this stage in the game, how can you not be?

 10 Under 10 on Amazon

10 Products on Amazon Prime Under $10

1. Waterproof Phone case:

This is your friendly reminder to order this awesome, super affordable water proof phone case before Summer is in full swing.  It’s awesome for the pool/lake/ocean when you want to keep your snapchat & photos going strong – but also convenient to protect your phone from all water concerns.

2. Real Techniques Beauty Sponge:

I was using the original Beauty Blender for a while but I hated how dirty they got.   I attempted cleaning them but am never satisfied.  Spending $20 every time I wanted a new one seemed ridiculous, so I started using these beauty sponges instead & haven’t looked back.  I use them for a majority of my makeup & it honestly makes the application too easy.

3. Wet Brush:

This. Is. The. Shit.  Really, praise Jesus.  This brush goes through my thick, tangled mess with ZERO problems. Enough said.

4. Vacuum Wine Stopper:

If you didn’t know this vacuum wine stopper existed, and at such an affordable price, then I apologize. I was also missing out for a long time & I understand that unfortunate feeling.  Like all your best friends knew about a secret pill to keep you skinny & never told you.  I’m there.

5. LED String Lights:

I love fairy lights because they make the perfect relaxed ambiance.  I’m also a 7 year old girl inside.  I was using old Christmas lights during my morning Yoga to achieve the perfect lighting but since then have discovered these string lights & love them!  I hung them all over the place & get away with it because you can’t see the string until you turn them on 🙂

6. Feathers:

I recently discovered how AMAZING Amazon is for costume & craft supplies.  I went to Carnaval a few months ago & made costumes for Wafiq & I.  After searching costume shops & craft stores I compared all the prices with what I found on Amazon & it was incomparable.  I don’t think I’ll be in a costume or craft store again for a long time, the savings are that awesome. ( Body Jewels, Costume Glue, Yarn )

7. Collapsible Dog Bowls:

If you don’t already own these bowls for your doggies then you need to!  They’re so easy to transport – you’ll always have a dish available for water. My dog still acts like a 2 year old & inhales all her food in mili-seconds so I find it helps to collapse her bowl when she’s done & easily put it away. I’m trying to help her work through her binge eating habits.  (Also, THESE dog treats!)

8. Dog Bags:

I pick up ALL my dog’s droppings & if you have a dog you should too.  I get red with fury when I bring my dog on walks & there’s dog shit everywhere.  Even super large mounds of dog shit in the middle of a path, really?! Who the fuck does this?   It really pisses me off. And, I’ve done so well with my animal,  I’ve managed to teach her not to shit on walking paths – she goes on a little gander off the path to take her bathroom break, then I proceed to pick it up & throw it in the trash can. You also notice I say:  throw it in the trash can?  That doesn’t mean you put the shit in a bag, tie the top, & drop it on the ground for someone else to pick up – doesn’t work like that people.  I know I’m venting on behalf of other people & am definitely not alone.  The dog bags on Amazon come in huge packs so you will NOT run out & they’re super affordable! No excuses.  Pick up your dog shit!

9. Batteries:

You know how annoying it is when one of those small, round batteries dies?  Because you’ll never remember to pick up another one at the store & you definitely won’t remember what battery it is, RTJ-0078 or WJO-2833 or NWH-9340293, – not happening.  They’re typically cheaper on Amazon AND all you have to do is open the app on your phone, click, and order. Easy!

10. Toothpaste

I buy all my dental products on Amazon, and here’s a toothpaste for you.  I like Tom’s products.  I haven’t done research about them but they seem to work the best for me, rather than the typical Crest or Trident brands.  The world made me paranoid of chain products so I trick myself into feeling better by purchasing Tom’s.


If you get the Amazon App you can order everything on this list for under $100 and have it at your door in 2 days.  It’s a miracle, isn’t it?  What else do you guys buy on Amazon, it’s as if Amazon users are in a secret little club of all things easy!

I hope you’re all rounding out your April in the best way! I’m about to finally confront myself with the reality that this may be the last weekend I see 80 degree temperatures in awhile – at least while in Texas.  I’ve had a long talk with my dog about this, as we both hate it equally.  Soon, I think we’ll get our minds right & be able to handle our reality – let’s see.

Have a great day & be thoughtful!

Xx

+ Amazon Prime, Beginners Guide: HERE


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Food, Life

3 Things You Need To Stop Using – TODAY

Did You Know? “Already, the ocean is filled with about 165 million tons of plastic. That’s 25 times heavier than the Great Pyramid of Giza.  By 2050, plastic in the oceans (is predicted to) outweigh fish.”

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One thing that drives me nuts is throw-away plastic.  I really can’t stand it.

And because it’s Earth Day this weekend I thought it would be a good time to address throw-away plastic.

Earth Day

Earth Day

I use old glass coconut oil jars for nuts & mixes too!

Earth Day

Veggies always ready to snack on…

Earth Day

Chopped onion ready for recipes & lunches //  Beans ready to go for salads!

Earth Day

THESE containers are perfect for lunches – great portion size & love that they’re wide, not deep

3 Things You Need To Stop Using, TODAY

1. Plastic Serving Items:

Plastic plates, utensils, cups, bowls, straws – all need to go!  I can’t remember the last time I purchased any of those items.   I remember in the 19th century when we thought using plastic items was incredibly smart because it made clean-up easier, but that was the 19th century when we didn’t know how much that was effecting our mother earth.

Honestly, it takes two seconds to get everything through the dishwasher & once you get in the habit of it, you don’t even notice the clean-up.

Large garbage bags filled with plastic serving utensils is disturbing.  Not to mention half of it blows away or breaks in the process & isn’t even used.  Instead – use real, affordable, inexpensive items that you’ll easily be able to wash, store, & reuse.

2. Zip Lock Bags:

Zip Lock Bags are dumb.  Wafiq had a hard time letting go of these but after much trickery I’ve managed to keep them out of the house & he’s barely noticed.

I use these red containers for EVERYTHING.  I chop onions, broccoli, jalapenos, and other veggies – then leave them in the containers to easily pull out & use for a quick lunch or recipe.

This size is particularly awesome for the Oatmeal I eat every morning.

And the containers make your refrigerator look so organized!!  Much better than bags hanging out all over the place.  This size is the perfect portion for your meals, anything bigger allows room for too much food!

I also use containers to freeze meat. Rather than the whole package, I’ll separate the pieces & freeze them in portions of my choosing.

Time to ditch zip locks people!  These containers are awesome, $23 for a set of 40, and you can buy them at Target OR Amazon Prime!

3. Paper Towels & Plastic Water Bottles:

I put paper towels & water bottles together because I understand avoiding these two items completely is not realistic for some people.

As far as paper towels are concerned – you can no longer be the person who grabs a paper towel EVERY SINGLE TIME you wash & dry your hands.  My jaw drops writing that.  You know how many paper towels you use & go through?!  Buy a few kitchen towels to dry your hands & switch them out as often as you need to in order to keep them clean.  Period.  Paper towels should be more of a back-up option.

As far as water bottles – I never drink out of the plastic ones unless I’m desperate for water & forgot to bring my own, which is rare.  I always have a huge water bottle with ice that I carry around & refill.   Every time I leave the house & of course while in the house.  (I shamefully became a Yeti addict recently, nothing like a freezing cold drink of water.  I use a metal straw with mine. )  If anyone buys those God forsaken small, 8oz, water bottles still – It’s time to stop immediately. What a waste!

 Earth Day

Earth Day

The Oatmeal I Eat Every Single Morning // Recipe: HERE

Earth Day

Fail Free (homemade) Ready To Bake Cookies // Recipe: HERE

Earth Day

What do you think?  Anyone else have any obsessive ways to ditch trash/recycle build up?

I’m not a huge climate change advocate but it does break my heart to see what mother earth is going through, especially with some of our wasteful decisions – so I try my best to do little things that will hopefully make a difference. Creating less trash sounds like a good start.

Let me know your thoughts!

Have a great weekend & be thoughtful

Xx


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Life

Making Friends, Having Friends, Maintaining Friends

“If you want something you have never had, you must be willing to do something you have never done.” – Thomas Jefferson


Making friends is like finding a boyfriend.  It’s not easy.  Especially if you’re looking for a good friend & you’re not a smoking hot professional cheerleader.

Making Friends

Like a boyfriend, you can date a lot of people & be pretty happy, but finding that one good one is hard.    Same with friends.  You can have a lot of them, but finding those really good friends that you love like family is hard to find.

I’ve never been the girl with a long list of friends. I wouldn’t be the one with 20 bridesmaids or 1,000 people at my wedding.   There’s a huge part of me that has always been envious of those people.  They were able to cultivate friendships from high school & college that stayed with them their whole lives.  I love that & am honestly impressed & a little envious…

 

I’m the one that could stay at home 99% of my life, only to go get food & walk my precious angel dog, but other than that I’m good to go at home.  I remember the one thing that hurt my feelings the most, from 2 of my ex boyfriends, was when they said I don’t have any friends.  AH!  In context, it wasn’t meant to hurt my feelings, it was immature boys trying to get away with hanging out with their single friends all the time, which I can understand – but hearing them tell me I have no friends was so fucking embarrassing.  Because it was a little true.  Since then, I’ve done better at making friends & am now a little more outgoing, because I have to be… But if you have no friends, don’t worry. I’ve apparently been there, twice.

Making Friends

So, meeting people has always been something I work at.  I’ve been super lucky in the sense that I’ve had a few really  awesome friendships in my life that showed me how important friendships are.  Some helped me grow, some challenged me, some helped me worry less, some helped me be more confident, some taught me a lesson.   Because of how much each friendship helped shape me, I know the value good friendships have.

The whole reason I’m putting this post together is because I started hearing people talk about friendships.  Maintaining friendships that were once strong but are going through change.  Looking for new friends that are easy to be around & share similar values.  Keeping or making friends that have similar interests come Friday night.  And simply the cycle of friendships.  It’s a weird topic to bring up because we’re adults & how do you start talking about friends? Sounds elementary.

When we’re kids we have friends that like to play hop scotch & jump rope together.  That’s pretty easy.  But when we’re older, shit gets a little more complicated than jumping rope.  In a good way, you get to actually talk.  Have interesting conversations.  Build each other’s character.  But everyone is growing into their own lifestyle, opinions, locations, and families.

 Making Friends

Because friends are similar to boyfriends, I think they should be treated the same way.  You have to work hard to find the good ones, and then work to maintain them.  Sitting inside, living within your routine, won’t bring new people into your lives.   That doesn’t happen.  You have to be available, by getting yourself out there.

And once you find a really awesome human being that you get to call a friend, you have to make sure to maintain the friendship.  Give. Appreciate. Listen. Evolve.

Right?

And let a relationship have it’s cycle.  Maybe it’ll go up & down. Someone’s busy, or going through a phase, or growing apart – Let that happen for a little while.  It’ll come around.   (That’s for friends, not boyfriends HA!)

What I figured out was that you can’t get comfy.  You have to work at getting outside your routine & what’s normal.  And like I said in my Money post, this doesn’t mean go out & spend money.  Go for a walk, go to the park, go to the beach, go  on a hike… Get creative!  You don’t have classrooms with new students each semester, so you have to get your ass out there & open up to finding people.

 Making Friends

As much as I would love to say Wafiq, my mom, and my dog are the only friends I need – I realize without good friends we’re still missing a whole other element to living.  So don’t get stuck with you dog, or cats, or partners.  Even though I would die a happy person & be very comfortable that way, I know there’s more!

Making friends sucks, but having friends makes it worth it.  Take on the week ready to mingle like you’re single!  Or maybe you’re both, get your boyfriends & friends all in one week!

Have a fabulous new day & be thoughtful,

Xx


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Life

“Be Like Garth Brooks” – 5 Tips For Being Positive

“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”

~ Groucho Marx


I’m not a super fan of country music or even Garth Brooks music so don’t be afraid I’m going to lay out all my country obsessions for you.   A few weeks ago I was able to see Garth Brooks in concert during SXSW. I’m not familiar with his music, I realized at all, but that didn’t matter.

Being-Postive(3)

Garth Brooks had the most incredibly positive attitude I’ve ever seen in concert, and in life.  Happy, laughing, loving, humble.  Whether or not that’s how he lives his life doesn’t matter to me because the energy during the concert radiated through everyone watching, even if you didn’t know his music.  And what a gift to give that feeling.

I want to make people feel like Garth Brooks does.

And you should too.

Why not make people feel good?  Why not give them a positive day?  We’re able to do that.  It takes worrying less about OURSELVES & more about our surroundings.  Even if Garth Brooks was having a shitty day he was able to be positive enough for his audience to feel good, and I imagine that attitude can also change his shitty day into a good one.

And it wasn’t only via music, which can also make you feel a certain type of way.  The happy feelings came from him, his energy, his conversation, his appreciation, the way he treated his band, his overall attitude.

We can all be like Garth Brooks you guys.  Imagine walking around, making everyone feel like they’re going to have a great day?

 Being Positive

There were two Uber drivers that did the same thing for me.  I had a 5 minute interaction with them but my entire day changed.  I still remember each of them, our conversation, and the feeling I had when I got out of the Uber.  And I’m not typically someone that loves conversating with Uber drivers (*cough*cough* Wafiq).

If you’ve ever met this type of person, it’s something you shouldn’t forget.  Take notes.  Because these people instantly make you feel comfortable, they have such a gift!  I imagine they lead a really positive life, always seeing the glass half full, and because that’s their lives it radiates in their everyday interactions. Every single time I run into these people I desperately want to pay it forward.

I consider myself a positive person, but I want to do better.  I want people to leave conversations with me, feeling my energy.  Feeling the positivity.  This is also why it’s so important to keep negative people away. How can you stay positive when you constantly have people with a negative attitude around you?

Being Positive

5 Tips For Being ‘The Positive Guy’

  1. Treat People Well:   Garth Brooks adored the hell out of his band.  He took plenty of time to showcase each member of his band & their talents, hobbies, attitudes, and families.  It feels good to see people treat people good.  Simple.   When you see a husband treat his wife with respect, love, priority & care – you feel good.  You know what I mean?  To be around others that treat “their peeps” well, gives you positive energy as well. It makes you want to treat your peeps the same way.

  2. Smile:  This is very easy & something I make an effort to do.  Mostly because one time I was at the lounge in The W waiting for the bathroom and these two extremely gorgeous girls walked by glaring at me & I felt so upset afterwards.  What did I do?!  When I came out of the bathroom I asked Wafiq to make sure I’m always smiling.  Even to the meanies.  I don’t want to glare at people or look sad or angry – I want to look happy & positive.  Trust me, it makes a big difference. Those girls went from 10’s to 2’s real quick.

  3. Pick your people:  Like I said, being around negative people makes it a constant challenge to remain positive.  As easy as positive energy can make you feel positive, negative energy can do the same.  Surround yourself with positive people & you’ll see how easy it is to be positive yourself. And if you don’t have any friends, or positive people in your life right now – keep searching until you find them 🙂

  4. Don’t Play Victim:  A hard one for everyone!  And similar to my Listening Post.  Nothing errks me more than people who are constantly trying to make you feel sorry for them.  Don’t be that person.  Don’t project YOUR stress from work, money, relationship, life onto other people.  Think about others.  Every single person has their own struggles & battles.  You’re not unique.  You’re not special.  Unfortunately, we’re all going through something we could bitch about.  So, be grateful for what you have, act like you are, and send that energy out into the world – even if you had a  bad day.

  5. Let Go:  I’m always preaching this one to Wafiq & I happen to think it’s something I’ve mastered in the past year or so…  If you have a bad day, bad situation, bad conversation, woke up late, car broke down, ran out of money or anything else that sucks big time – Let. It. Go.  None of that shit really matters in the whole scheme of things.  Time is going to pass by and you’ll never remember it happening.  So don’t let it effect the people around you, because that can ruin someone’s day, and it’s not worth it.  The important thing is to let it go, deal with it and forget it.  Don’t let it seep into conversations, your attitude, your energy, your smiles.  LET IT GO.  I think this is the hardest for most people, but I would argue the most important.

 Being Positive

Whenever Wafiq or myself starts having a little negative moment we’re quick to say: “Be like Garth Brooks”.  LOL!  Better than saying: “You’re being an asshole”.  Right?!  Whatever works guys.

Being positive sounds normal & easy but it’s a lifestyle. And a choice you have to make everyday.  You either live with the intention to be positive or not, so lets work on it! Let’s make people feel good!  Why not?!

Be like Garth Brooks today & as always, be thoughtful

Xx

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Food

5 Uncommon Ingredients For Your Kitchen: Middle East Inspired

Did You Know? Most of us are used to eating popcorn at the movie theater, but in parts of Columbia they snack on Ants.  “Known in Spanish as ‘hormigas culonas,’ the brown, cockroach-size insects are roasted, salted and eaten like peanuts. Considered a delicacy, they can fetch more than 10 times the price per pound of Colombia’s world-famous coffee.”

( v i a )

 


Piggybacking off the Veggie Curry recipe I want you all to make, I became inspired to start sharing uncommon ingredients you need to add to your kitchen cabinets.  One reason I love cooking so much is learning about new ingredients & foods.   It’s like discovering lost treasure.

That’s also one of the best parts I’ve discovered from living abroad, all the new found flavors AND being able to show off favorites from home.

I used to be afraid of recipes that had ingredients I didn’t use or have in my kitchen.  I thought it took too much energy to find them & the unknown price & flavors… But over time & the use of bravery, I’ve stalked my kitchen with all kinds of interesting ingredients & end up using them more than I expected.

I want to help you become familiar with a few of them & encourage you to explore flavors for yourself.  You’ll be so popular & feel really cool.  Today, I’m sharing 5 ingredients, but I plan to share more later.   YUM! I’m hungry.

5-Interesting-Ingredients

5 Uncommon Ingredients for your Kitchen! Mid-East Inspired 

1. Turmeric:

Commonly used in Curry!  Delicious! You can buy fresh turmeric in the grocery store near ginger, those two look similar, or turmeric ground up into a spice.  Turmeric is not scary, unless you make Turmeric Milk, I still have nightmares from this experience.

Right now, Turmeric is the popular girl at school.  Bloggers & healthy people figured out the benefits of turmeric & now it’s all the rage, for good reason.  Benefits can: reduce bloating, heartburn, high cholesterol, headaches, swelling, water retention, inflammation, skin issues, and the list goes on.  (via)

So, Pinterest a yummy Curry recipe, like this one, and give Turmeric a try!  (I really need to get a Curry recipe on MissBassmaster soon…)

2. Cumin: 

How the hell someone does not have a large tub of the cumin spice at home I have no idea… I dump Cumin in everything!  Hummus, spaghetti, Chili, Curry, casseroles, seasoning – I mean everything.  By the way, I’ve watched plenty of Curry & Biryani dishes being made & let me tell you it’s pretty cute how American’s measure out a precious teaspoon of their spices to add in a dish – Arab’s dump them in! I’ve witnessed it & have applied the same strategy when cooking.  With some spices it works against me (*cough* cayenne pepper) but with Cumin, dumping works!  I prefer ground cumin more than the seeds, but to each their own.

3. Cardamom:

Have you ever wanted to know how Arab’s cook the rice they accompany to all their lunches?  Cardamom. They throw a few cardamom pods, & a clove or two, in their rice cooker while the rice is cooking.   This is a staple way to prepare your basmati white rice. Or really any basmati rice dish.  And how easy is that?  Wafiq and I grab a cardamom pod + a clove and toss them in our rice cooker.  Adds the perfect amount of very light flavor to really make you feel like a pro in the kitchen.  Hello, Chef!

Cardamom is known as an expensive spice, but don’t let that scare you.  A little goes a long way & it’s still not that expensive for a good spice. You can find it near the spices at the grocery store.  The bonus? Believed benefits include: mood-elevating properties, aromatherapy, antidepressant, improved blood circulation, cancer protection, treatment for sore throats, congestion, stomach & lung issues… the list is long! (via)

4. Tahini:

Do you have Peanut Butter?  Yes?  Then Tahini shouldn’t scare you away.  It’s basically a different kind of peanut butter but instead of peanuts, Tahini is made from sesame seeds.  You can find it next to Peanut Butter in the grocery store & likely only a dollar or two more than peanut butter.  Most commonly known as an ingredient used in Hummus, which is why I always have a jar in my kitchen. Wafiq’s mom chops dates & drizzles a little Tahini over them for an evening snack… SO GOOD.  (Hummus Recipe: HERE)

5. Saffron:

This is probably the most intimidating ingredient on my list simply because it’s pretty expensive for such a little amount.  And what the hell do you do with it, right?  Saffron is a little tricky to find, usually found near the spices in a little jar. Most rice dishes that are yellow coloring have Saffron in them, unless it’s Turmeric as a substitute.  I’ve only used Saffron in Biryani recipes, like this one.  You can throw in a very little amount, only a very small strand, and the dish will turn yellow as mixed.  You can also mix the saffron in a liquid (we used milk) before you add it to a dish.

Saffron is still tricky for me, but worth a try!!  I don’t always have Saffron in my kitchen, but from time to time I’ll get my hands on some & Wafiq thanks me 🙂


I hope you’re excited to get to the grocery store (OR you’ve already ordered them on your Amazon app, HA)!

These flavors are currently waiting for a tasting so give them a try! Most are super easy to incorporate into any meal & you can only begin exploring new meals from there.

Anyone have new ingredients to share?  I’m ALWAYS looking 🙂

Have a great day today & be thoughtful.

Xx


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Life

The Trouble With Money…

Did You Know? Some people believe “if I make more money, I can be competitive and win the race,” When money is the top priority for a person, and they lose it – because of a layoff, for instance – their self-worth shrinks. (“They mix up net worth with self-worth.”) They suffer significantly because money is the only thing that matters, instead of another person who places greater value in family and is passionate about other things.

( v i a )


Lets talk MONEY, shall we?  Delicious, rich, spectacular money.

The Trouble With Money

Money is the driver of pretty much everything.  You need it to survive, to pay the bills, to have a roof over your head.  You also need it to fund activities in order to keep you sane from your full time job that’s paying those bills.

I’ve always dreamt of people with indispensable money – what it looks & feels like to go anywhere & do anything without a worry in the world.  Eat wherever you want, drive whatever you want, pay for your family/friends vacations, payback the people you once had to borrow from, go to any doctor you want, get a nice face mask.

However, this post isn’t about wanting money, it’s about appreciating what we have.

Abroad, all I wanted was fucking money. I was SOOO broke.  I wasn’t able to work right away because the Visa permit for my job was taking longer than I expected & when you breathe in Dubai you spend $500/breath, so there’s that.  Any money I could get my hands on disappeared before I had a chance to look at it.  And, I didn’t even know how to borrow money from anyone at home.  Thank God I didn’t know how to open a credit card!  So, I had to ask favors from people in Dubai that I barely knew at that point.   I felt like I lost all my power & confidence. (Enter: Shingles)  Not exaggerating, I counted every. single. cent. (or dirham in that case).   Until finally, I started working & feeling like myself again.

But, when Wafiq & I moved back to the U.S. from Dubai, with only our savings accounts, we were back to feeling like we had nothing.  Of course we had our savings but with no income those numbers start shrinking fast, not to mention the unexpected cost of immigration lawyers & the fees associated with their services.  Back to NO FREAKING MONEY!   (Very familiar feeling.)  At times, it was sickening & scary. But the curve ball here is, all the moments we shared together where we felt alive!  The hustle of life right under our feet & only possibility ahead.  Not yet in a full time corporate job that was holding us back, only imagination & a blank slate ahead.   It was a mix of feeling like we’re the biggest fucking losers on Earth that can barely eat,  to free spirits with the entire world & all of its opportunities spread out in front of us.    In a cage, but free.

Well, we’re not that broke anymore.

But, because I know the feeling & I don’t doubt that it could happen again… I wanted to write about being broke.  It fucking sucks baaaaad.   But so does having money.  Money sucks.  I’ve been friends with people that have had a lot of money their entire lives, and always will.  With money comes greed & stubbornness.  Your surroundings appear cloudy.  What’s real & what isn’t.  Who needs a favor & who wants one.

I’ve also been friends with people that once received a lot of money after living without it for most of their lives.  Even this scenario can turn ugly.  Money changes people.  Takes away the depth of conversations, turns the topics into competition.  Proving themselves & their worth.

Looking back, not having money was a grind that I’m happy I did my best to appreciate.  I had beautifully authentic conversations & met some of the most genuine people in those times.  I had nothing more to offer than my friendship & a night in playing cards w/$3 bottles of wine, drinking it out of a plastic coffee cup.  (PS.  I was out of college, this was no longer acceptable.)  I connected with people that valued life & friendship more than the depth of each other’s pockets.

When Wafiq & I had no money we wouldn’t go out very often because we simply couldn’t afford it.  But it was so easy to say that: “we can’t afford going out because we don’t currently have a job… or money.” HA!  Now? We have to say yes to a steak dinner and taste our wine with a seal of approval before we purchase the glass.   Once upon a time, we used to get very creative with dates. The park or beach with a picnic meal & cheap wine.  Cheese plates with a movie in the background & cards on the table. Driving around brainstorming ideas of companies to apply for or career paths to get involved in.

My point is, the grass is not always greener on the other side. And I think the solution is to be grateful for what you currently have & to be thoughtful of the people around you.  Whether you have money now or you don’t, be thoughtful & appreciate where you’re at.   Listen, create good conversations about weird things.  Also, get out of your own demographic a little.  For me, that helped understand money a lot better.  When you become friends with people that truly have NO money and people that truly have an abundance of money, you’ll learn a lot.

 The-Trouble-With-Money

I love the idea of simply being thoughtful.  It takes slowing down & being vulnerable, but that’s better than leading with insecurities.  Go out today & be thoughtful while you take on the world & work work work work work!  You got this, whatever amount is in your pocket is enough for today!

Xx


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