Transparency.

Hi everyone, I know its been quite a while since I last wrote to you all…

But what does it mean to be transparent? Does it mean being open/honest to your loved ones? Does it mean being true to yourself? Does it mean telling someone something even though you know it will destroy them? To me… its all of the above. Before I begin, I want to let all of you know that I am sharing my personal life story with you in order to help the next girl/boy out there who is in a similar situation that made an unforgivable mistake. To give a person like me, who is feeling alone and in need, a friend, a voice, a reason, and most importantly some advice.

Coming clean: being true to yourself and telling your loved one some that you know will destroy them. That is exactly what I did. I was transparent to myself and to my mistake and most importantly to my (ex) boyfriend. I did the impossible by breaking the three years of trust that we have bonded together by making a mistake. Its your average college girl stereotype, a girl got super drunk and cheated on her boyfriend. Never in a million years would I think that this was the girl I would become and this would be the mistake I would make that would alter my life forever.

Telling them: This was hands down the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life. I have never felt so horrible, so guilty, and so sick to my stomach. But the thing is… I did it. I was transparent and opened myself up to the person who meant most to me in my life to tell them unforgivable. I was right when I told myself to expect the worse. Because certainly the worst happened when I told him. There were tears, there was screaming, there was hurtful words, there were endless apologies, but the worst was that there there was a breaking of a bond and a relationship and a loss of my best-friend. 

Be prepared: You are going to be hurt. You are going to get called unimaginable names. The person who you are telling is going to say whatever they can to try and hurt you as much as you hurt that person. But you need to remember; you are not the things that they are going to call you. You are NOT worthless, you are NOT a piece of trash, you are NOT an embarrassment, you are NOT a loser, you are NOT a slut. You WILL be loved by someone again and you WILL fall in love and be happy again.

Do not let the words they are saying get to your head. Do not think that you are any of the things they are saying to you. You made a mistake. You owned up to that mistake. Granted, it may be the biggest mistake that you have ever made in your life, but you owned up to your wrongdoing. You were transparent with yourself and with the person that meaned the most to you.

Would you forgive someone that did the impossible to you? Would you forgive someone that hurt you more than anything else? Because I don’t even know if I would if the roles were reversed.  You are going to want to fix things, you are going to want to make things better, you are going to want to take it all back and change your actions. But the thing is, you can’t. Whats done is done. You can’t expect the other person to forgive you and want to get back together or work things out.The only thing you can do now is FORGIVE YOURSELF.  Remember who you are and focus on bettering yourself, promising yourself to not make this kind of mistake ever again. It is not going to be easy, but you can do it.  

P.S. I guess it is true when people say that TIME really does heal all WOUNDS.

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Essential Spring Wardrobe Items

FINALLY SPRING IS HERE! Warm weather, sunshine, blue skies, and green grass. Not only does spring mean that we are one step closer to summer, but also helps lift up our moods! Bust most importantly spring fashion. Spring is one of my favorite times of the year because of all the unique fashion aspects. We can finally put those bulky turtleneck sweaters and ugg boots away.  It now time for ankle jeans, skirts, floral prints, denim, light colors, flats, and much more! Spring time allows for so much versatility in your wardrobe and I am going to talk about some of the ESSENTIAL items you need in your closet this spring.

Lets start from top to bottom. One of my favorites, and probably most worn, is my denim button down shirt. This shirt can be worn with every type of outfit. I wear it to school, work, and on date-nights. It can be dressed up with a dress or a skirt and dressed down with a pair of leggings or colored pant. The denim shirt allows for a little personality to go a long way and a great way to add some layering to your outfit. Not only is it one of the hottest items this spring, but also the most comfortable!

Next, floral print tops. Personally I am in love with floral. Florals are a perfect transition top into spring. The vibrant colors are eased into your wardrobe little by little without being overwhelmed. Floral tops can either be added into your everyday outfit with a dressy blouse, flowly short sleeve or even a simple tank! The floral tops also make me happy because I think of the beauty of nature and all the flowers blooming right outside my door. (Perfectly paired with the denim top underneath)

Ankle jeans and colored pants. I am in love with ankle jeans. They are a timeless choice and super flattering on any body type. Dress them up with open toed booties or dress down with an pair of Addidas sneakers. Colored Jeans are a perfect way to ease away from the greys and blacks and into the blushes and blues. I have a personal favorite of a pair of ankle blush jeans that I wear all the time! (Perfectly paired with the denim shirt and floral tank underneath)

Last but not least SHOES! Out of every time of spring essential you could have, shoes are definitely the most important. The shoes you wear are who you are;  they are what is bringing your graceful self from place to place as you move throughout your busy days. This spring is all about flats. That may bet be loafers, sneakers, ballet flats, the choice is yours! The pair that I find most essential and versatile to my wardrobe are the quilted slip on sneakers. They are the perfect in-between for a flat and a sneaker. Comfortable enough to wear all day and up-scale enough to wear to work or school. (Perfectly paired with the denim shirt, floral tank, and a colored pant underneath)

You guys now have all of my essential spring wardrobe items. All of these can be found at any local boutique or any retail department store. Dress them up or dress them down. Wear to school, wear to work, or even to brunch with the girls! The choice if yours but make sure to wear what makes YOU feel pretty and feel good about YOURSELF.

P.S. Check the parenthesis to find out my favorite spring outfit from top to bottom for you guys to try out!

The Phenomenon of Cauliflower

Hi Everyone! I have recently discovered a recipe for all of us rice lovers out there. I mean who doesn’t love rice… I do know that what we don’t like is the high amounts of carbs that come with it. Instead of rice, I have discovered how amazing the alternative of cauliflower rice really is, especially for us who are trying to eat healthier and fuel of mind and body with goodness.

So you may ask, what really are the advantages that cauliflower has? It’s made from one of the healthiest vegetables you can get because it is loaded with all the nutrients our bodies needs to survive, including fiber, vitamins C, K and B6, and potassium. Cauliflower also has much less calories per cup then brown rice. Cauliflower has 25 calories per cup vs. 218 for a cup of cooked brown rice. For those who are watching carbs, cauliflower has 5g of carbs per cup vs. 46g of carbs for a cup of brown rice. Overall, why not try substituting cauliflower rice instead of brown rice for your next meal!

So how do we get this mysterious cauliflower rice? Well you can either buy it prepackaged at Wegmans or you can make it yourself. One pound of cauliflower will yield about 4 cups of rice. You place the cauliflower in a food processor and pulse until the pieces are tiny enough to resemble grains of rice. You then transfer the newly made rice into a pan with some olive oil (a healthy fat) and which ever seasonings you like. You let the rice cook for about 8 minutes or until the rice is tender, while making sure to continuously stir the pan so it doesn’t burn.

In order to make the dish more of a meal, I like to add a few ingredients to help keep me fuller longer and give the rice some more flavor. It is basically my version of the Chinese place’s pork fried rice but with chicken. You need 2 eggs, 1/4 cup of carrots, 1/4 cup of onions, 1/4 cup of red peppers, and one grilled chicken breast. I make sure to cook the chicken and vegetables first before adding to the rice. You can add some low-sodium soy sauce to really give it that Chinese food taste.  And wha-lah you now have a healthier alternative to pork fried rice that is filled with protein and essential vitamins and minerals needed to fuel your body. Hope you enjoy it!

P.S. You can also make mac and cheese with the cauliflower rice too!

 

Meal Prepping 101

When is comes to eating healthy, preparation is key. So what is meal prepping? Meal prepping is picking a day during the week to cook and organize all of your meals that you are going to eat during that week. Meal prepping comes in handy to those busy bodies like myself who are always on the run and don’t have time to prepare a meal from scratch every night. When you have your meals prepped in advance, all it takes is a few minutes to heat up and your set! It also helps alleviate some of the temptations of just ordering a calorie bomb of take-out food after a long day.

For many people, meal prepping has been the one thing that helps them stick to a fitness plan and create better dietary habits in the long run! Meal prepping allows for you to save time and money. You will save time in your day where you can now workout or catch up on sleep or write a paper. You can also save money by not ordering your meals from take-out or going out to restaurants every night! Now, it may seem like a little intimidating thinking about all the work it takes but there are many tips out there to help beginners get their foot in the door.

In order to successfully prep all your meals for the upcoming week, its important to have a plan. Meaning, you need to know what foods you are going to make, how much of that food you need, and a day that you have set to go grocery shopping and cook the food. All of these factors may be different for everyone depending on the size of your family, your fitness regime and the time that is available to cook. To help those who are interested in starting and learning how to meal prep, I have come up with three tips that are vital to a successfully utilize meal prepping.

SO, Step 1: Figuring out what day you are going to cook the and prepare your meals. If you are a person who is cooking a lot of food for multiple people, I would suggest splitting the cooking days into two. You can make half of the meals on Sunday and half Wednesday. That way you won’t have to spend as much time in one sitting and can also have a wider variety of foods you are able to make.

Step 2: Determining how many meals you want to prepare. The mistake many first-timers make is actually preparing too much food that ends up going to waste. In order to correctly make the food that is needed, you need to know exactly how many meals you need per day and thus per week that you need to prepare. (Or every 3/4 days depending on the what you chose) For example, many people find that they do not need to meal prep their breakfast because they have extra time in the mornings. No matter what, the important thing is figuring out how many meals you want and need to prepare ahead of time.

Step 3: Determining what kind of  foods to make. The best way to decide what kind of food you are going to make, is to think about how long it is going to last. You want the type of foods you are making to be able to stay fresh and still taste good after a few days in the refrigerator. My tip for this is choosing staple foods that are easy to cook and can still serve you a variety of meals. This means cooking you basics: carbs (brown rice, oats, whole-grain pasta, quinoa), protein,(chicken, lean beef, flank-steak, turkey, beans) veggies (carrots, broccoli, sweet potatoes, zucchini, tomatoes) and healthy fats (almonds, peanut butter, nuts, olive oil.) You don’t want to make some gourmet meal that is going to go bad in one day. The main focus is easy to cook and foods that will store well.

P.S. Meal prepping can seem like a lot, but all it takes is a plan and some organization to make it happen!

Communicating Organically

Face to face communication, the thing most of us hate and dread. Because today’s world has become engrossed in technology, the societal norm of communicating has been over the internet or through social media. This has led to people developing serve anxiety due to the fact that they actually have to talk to people in person, face to face, organically. But the thing is, the ability to communicate with one another is the thing that sets us apart. Its the attribute that makes human kind unique and we should not throw that away because of the advancement of technology.

People have gotten used to having the time to craft the perfect text message, email, and even Facebook post through the use of smart phones. All this time spent on premeditating and  “crafting” the content of your message, has taken away form the organic natural of a communication interaction. .  This leads to a communication interaction that no longer has any value. The message is not sincere, but rather a formation of words and emojis that is no longer meaningful. Have you ever typed a message and then completely deleted the whole thing because you didn’t think the person was going to respond to what you said? I know we all have. This type of communication does not allow us to form long-lasting relationships with other people. Instead, it leads to friendships and relationship where the people are sitting on their phones playing games or on social media when they are “hanging out”.

Let’s take a few steps back in time for a moment. Remember back in the olden days when social media didn’t exist and technology wasn’t so advanced. That’s when communication and relationships where at an all time high. There was no playing games with your partner when it came to communicating. Leaving a person “on-read” was not a signal or message that someone wasn’t in to you. There was no emoji. There was no “crafting” the perfect text message to tell a person how you feel.  There was no sitting on your phone when you were “hanging out” with your friends. There was adventure. There was true love. There was organic communication. There were marriages that didn’t end up divorce 50% of the time. Everything was natural and organic back then; the relationships, the friendships, the communication interactions, the people themselves.

It’s like when we log on social media or use our smart phones we put on this mask. A mask that hides who we truly are and what we truly want to say. Its a mask that takes away our ability to communicate organically and express the way we feel. Because of this mask, we have entered a time period where the communication  interactions between people are no longer dynamic, no longer fluid, and most importantly no longer organic. It’s when you start altering the things you say because you are afraid of the response that the communication interaction is no longer organic.

There is no need to have anxiety or be scared to talk to people face to face. Because this type of communication is natural. When you are in person communicating, you do not have the time to “craft” the content of your message. It comes naturally, your thoughts, your words, your communication interaction. Face to face organic communication allows for relationships and friendships to be made based on value and meaningful conversation. You are discovering real reasons why you want this person in your life. Here, there are no games, no mixed signals, and no getting left “on read”.

I don’t know about you guys but I’d much rather go back to the days where everything wasn’t premeditated. So, take a minute. Think about the way you communicate with the people who are important to you. Is it organic? Or is everything you say perfectly “crafted” because you want them to like you. The fix for this is simple. Stop overthinking every single thing. Don’t worry about what people are going to think or say. Say what you feel, say what comes to mind right then and there. Be who you are and stop shifting your viewpoints and communication interactions because of societal norms. Be organic.

P.S. All it takes is a recognition of the communication issue to fix  it. Communication is key.

 

Healthy Snacks Idea for On the Go

Its snack time everyone. I know that at some point in the day we look for a snack in our bags and we always seem to have the same old boring snack. During the day we get hungry and if you are anything like me, you don’t want to spend $10 to buy a snack or eat the same old unhealthy, sugar filled snack when you can make healthy and delicious ones from home!

Now, I know that in the morning we are all rushing to get ready for school, work, or whatever we have planned for the day and are so tempted to just grab a bag of chips and go. I want to advise you all to take the extra five minutes to make a quick and easy snack that your body and mind will thank you for later in the day. I also deal with this problem because I currently spend most of my days on a college campus, typically from 8:30 to 2pm. I often find myself wishing I packed a healthy snack for me to munch on in between classes.

The foods around me are so tempting because I am hungry and bored. In order for me not to be tempted to eat the sodium and saturated fat filled college food, I have come up with a  few ideas for snacks in the morning that are delicious, nutritious, and easy to make!  I came up with these snack ideas to help get me through the day and keep my belly filled without spending a great deal of money or putting processed foods into my body.

Three of my favorite homemade snack to eat on the go are peanut-butter and banana filled whole wheat crackers, peanut-butter and chocolate chip apple slices, and yogurt with fruit and granola on top. To make these snacks you will need: a jar of peanut butter, one banana, whole-wheat ritz crackers, one apple, mini  dark choc chips, yogurt, any type of fruit, and some granola.  All non-expensive ingredients which can be found at your local grocery store.

For the peanut-butter and banana filled whole wheat crackers I make five sandwiches. I do peanut-butter on both crackers and then a thin slice of banana in the middle. For the apple slices I use one apple slice it into about four pieces. I spread the peanut-butter on top and then sprinkle a few dark chocolate chips on top. Lastly, for the yogurt I get vanilla low-fat flavored and pour it into a jar, add fresh strawberries and blueberries inside and then sprinkle some honey granola on top.

All of these snack can be made in under five minutes and taste great! You can put the crackers and apple slices in a plastic baggie or container and throw them in your bag to eat later in the day. You can put the fruit and yogurt in a mason jar with a lid or a plastic to-go container to keep safe and store for later in the day. All three options are filled with nutritional value that your mind and body will thank you for choosing these snacks over a bag of chips!

P.S. What are some of your favorite snacks to eat while on the go? Comment below:)

 

Spring Break and Social Media

This post is going to be targeted at my college student audience out there. So, last week was spring break for most of us. Now I don’t know about you guys but I was not on some tropical island drinking with all my friends. Instead I was catching up on some much needed sleep, homework, and oh did I forget WORKING. But most importantly, sitting on social media looking at everyone’s snapchats and instagrams of them in bikinis on the beach.

What is even worse is that not only was I glued to my phone all week, but the feelings of jealously, envy, and depression even emerged from seeing all of the people have so much fun while I sat home. I was jealous I was not spending my week relaxing in the sun. I was envious of them partying all day and night with their best friends. The feelings of depression started to kick in when I saw just how skinny and perfect the girls looked in their bikinis.

I began comparing myself to them. I looked at them and saw everything I wasn’t. I began to nitpick every insecurity and everything that I saw wrong with my body. I felt so sad that I did not have all the cute clothes they had, I did not have their tans, and most of all I did not have a big ass and a tiny toned waist that they did. I saw the hundreds and hundreds of likes all these girls were getting on their spring break photos and thought to myself, wow look at all these likes, people must really think they are pretty. I compared their pictures to mine and thought I guess people do not think I am as pretty as them since they arn’t liking my picture.

But here’s the thing, why even bother comparing yourself to anyone? Why even bother trying so hard to be someone you aren’t? Why even bother letting someone else decide your opinion of yourself? You are not them and there are probably about 100 people who like you for everything you are. People like you because are different and that is okay. The opinion you have of yourself is the only one that matters, no one else’s. It is so important to remember who you are and not let what other people do affect your life or they way you see yourself.

Now we all know for next spring break or next time we see everyone on vacation while we are home. First, get off social media and focus on what is happening around you. Second, stop comparing yourself to the people you see in the pictures on social media (it probably took them 3 hours to take one photo). Lastly, remember who you are. Do not change your opinion of yourself or who you are to fit the like or wants of others.

P.S.  If I knew who all my reader were I’d definitely like you for you and no one else 🙂

To The Girl Who Thinks She Isn’t Good Enough

An open letter to the girl who thinks she isn’t good enough:

To the girl who wakes up every morning thinking she is not enough. To the girl who buries her  face in her pillow so no one will hear her crying. To the girl who is always blaming herself when something goes wrong. To the girl who’s anxiety takes over at night where she lays awake creating scenarios in her head that will never happen. To the girl with countless insecurities. But mostly, to the girl who thinks that her life is not valued by others.

You are enough. The tears you cry do not define you. Some of the strongest people on this Earth cry. Your emotions are not your weakness but instead your strength.  You are not always the one to blame, but rather someone who is willing to do whatever to takes to make others happy. Your anxiety is only has prevalent as you let it be. Do not let the opinions of others affect the way you live your life. Most of all, you are by all means valued. You are someone who is loved. Whether you are a daughter, a sister, a friend, a loved one, you are wanted.

But I get it. We are all living in the same fucked up society struggling to be enough. You may not be the smart one. You may not be the prettiest one in your friend group. You arn’t the fittest or skinniest one. You arn’t the funny one. You aren’t the one they think of first to call when someone wants to hangout. You do not have some fancy degree thats going to tell you where you are going in life. You do not have an exciting job lined up after graduation. You do not have your life planned out from start to finish. But thats the thing…

THAT IS OKAY. Stop letting the pressure of having everything planned out take over your life. Stop competing with unacceptable expectations of society. Stop comparing yourself to everyone else you see on social media. Stop allowing yourself to base your life value on the opinions of other people. Stop allowing yourself to feel shitty and feel worthless. Stop focusing on what your are bad at and focus on the positive. Because that is that. One day you are going to find what you are good at and you are going to excel more and more at just that. You are going to find your purpose.

You are in control. You are the one who has the power. This is your life and no one else’s. Your purpose is not to make other people happy and fulfill the expectations of society, but do what makes you happy. Let go of the negativity. Let go of the people who bring you down. Let go of the those unrealistic scenarios in your head. Let go of the insecurities. Let go of it all, because you are and always be enough.

P.S. Everyone is fighting their own battle and is on their own journey. Be mindful, be positive, be caring.

 

 

Decluttering- What do Actually you Need to be Happy in Life?

It is that time of the year again. SPRING CLEANING. Everyone’s favorite time of the year to  declutter and get rid of all the materialistic things you no longer need in your life. Most people have the mindset that the more they have, the more they will be happy. That my friends is not true. Increasing the amount of material things you have will not increase your happiness. In my opinion, it will do the opposite by increasing your anxiety and stress levels.

So, what is decluttering? Decluttering is not throwing out everything that makes you happy to make room in you life and home. It is just a simplified way of living. A life lived simply with things that only serve a purpose. When you declutter your life, you own less materialistic things. This means fewer items to organize and less stress have to worry about these things. It also allows you to reallocate the money to things you are more passionate about such as traveling or making more memories with your family/loved ones.

My point here is not for you go home after reading this and throw out everything you own. Instead, it is about taking the time to evaluate the things you do own. Its to think about the items you own and ask yourself if this piece is item still brings a value to your life. Something else to think about while you are doing this, the things that once added value to your life in the past are not gong to remain the same. It is not about owning less things and depriving yourself from certain things, but rather finding what’s more important and add value to your life and brings your happiness.

A minimalism and decluttering podcast I listened too suggested some really cool ideas on how to try and  limit the clutter in your life. I like the 99 idea where you ask yourself, “have I used this in the last 99 days and will I use it in the next”. I think this can help at a lot of people re-evaluate what is truly important in their lives. Another idea is that instead of having people get gifts for you for the holidays, share an experience together or a meal with them. We all have so much stuff in our life and truly spending quality time with our loved ones bring more joy to your life then a gift will.

P.S. Don’t forget to live they lifestyle that you want to live. Do not let anyone or anything keep you from what you are passionate about.

Organizing your Busy Life

Organization is key. When it comes down to figuring out and planning your life on a daily basis, you need to have some sort of a plan. However, there are some few people out there that can just wing it and hope for the best. I am not one of those few people.  Because I was not blessed with being a “just go with the flow” kind of girl, I have come up with a few ways to help be more organized and  productive day to day.

  1. Get a planner

Man, I cannot tell you how much of a life saver this thing can be. Our lives are filled with so many different activities ranging from social events to work and even to fitness schedules, it can lead to so much clutter. It can sometimes feel over whelming to have to keep track of everything in your head. A planner will allow you to write down all of your activities that are scheduled. It will help to de-stress your mind, along with helping to not over-schedule your days.  I even have my planner color-coded where I use a different color pen for homework, work, fitness, appointments, and social events. Not only does this look pretty, but it helps to keep the different aspects of your life organized.

2. Stop procrastinating 

Stop waiting till the last minute to get something done. Procrastinating takes all of the organization out of your life. I know all of us are busy and do not have the time to waste by sitting around and putting off important things that need to get done. Put down your phone and turn the notifications off on your laptop to help eliminate some of those distractions. Set a specific time for everyday that you will dedicate to whatever needs to get done, whether that be paperwork, school work, cleaning, or even running errands. A set time will help you from putting things off till the last minute and keep you and your busy lives organized.

3. Keep your living space clean

It is so hard to get things done when the place you are working is a mess. There is a place for everything in your home. Make an effort to keep your living space clean by setting 5 or even 10 minutes a day to tidy up your room or wherever to keep things from getting messy and cluttered. I know it can seem like a pain to have to keep everything clean all of the time but believe me it makes a huge different. You will get so much more done in an organized environment than you would in a cluttered one.  Living in a place that is neat, clean and organized helps you to also keep your life organized.

P.S. My favorite planner is Lily Pulitzer that I use daily!