Monthly Archives

December 2013


Encouraging Words: “Your Past is a Learning Tool”

December 10, 2013

There are a lot of changes getting ready to take place in my life, and as exciting as it all is it’s also a little scary. Change makes me reflective, so I’ve been spending more time lately thinking about my life. Generally, I’ve been thinking about the goals that I’ve set for myself (personally and professionally), and the relationships I have with people.Instead of harping on the negative or what I perceive to be as “mistakes” in my past, I’m choosing to appreciate them as life lessons. I’m looking at how I can change my thoughts, my words, and my actions, so that history doesn’t repeat itself. It’s much more helpful to view your past in this way. You’re not dwelling on the negative or bothered by it, you’re just learning and growing from it.Here are some lessons I’ve learned from my past:Put yourself out there (be a bit more extroverted). While it seems scary, I think it’s doable. It just involves sharing a little bit more of yourself (your sense of humor, your smile, your interests) with the world. Introverts are incredible people (and I speak as one), but we tend to be more guarded, and as a result I think we can miss out on some amazing opportunities.

Speak your truth (your morals, beliefs, values, etc). Whatever your truth is, speak it and own it. In a society obsessed with followers, likes, and retweets, we sometimes stop speaking our truth because it’s not popular opinion. We feel like we have to fit into a box or use a specific formula to be accepted. Well, who cares?! Speak your truth because someone out there is going to be able to relate to it, and could probably benefit from it. Also, it’s very powerful when you can stand up and say this is who I am and make no apologies for it.

Have more faith in yourself. Whether it’s translating your passion for baking into a dessert shop, becoming a medical doctor, or designing a clothing line, believe that these aren’t just pipe dreams, but they are goals that through hard work and determination can actually manifest.

Use your past as a learning tool. I hope you all have a fabulous week!


An Extra $1.50 a Day

December 7, 2013

According to a recently published review, that is the difference in cost between the healthiest and unhealthiest diets. That translates to about $550 per year. For lower income families this can present a real challenge to choosing healthier food items, but for others, not as much. When you consider the health implications of an unhealthy diet, like diabetes and heart disease, that amount pales in comparison.Now, I do not presume to know people’s financial situations, and I’ll be the first to acknowledge that choosing a healthier diet can often mean parting with more money, but there are ways to offset these costs. Here are a few things to look into:

How often do you eat out? I’m not just talking about going to sit down restaurants. I’m also talking about going to fast food restaurants or picking up something from the deli section at your grocery store. Often times you’re paying $10, $20, or more for one meal, when that amount of money could have gone towards groceries that would have produced multiple meals.

Plan ahead. This goes hand in hand with eating out. When you don’t plan ahead you find yourself picking up meals at the last minute. If you decide what you’re making for the week, buy the necessary groceries, and make those meals, then there will be no last minute Mickey D’s drive bys.

Are there any farmer’s markets nearby? Farmer’s markets are great for a number of reasons. One, the produce is local, fresh, and often cheap. Two, there is usually a much better selection than what you’d find at a grocery store.

Buy in bulk and freeze. Pretty self-explanatory. If you see a good deal on bell peppers (and there’s no limit per customer), buy as many as you want and freeze the ones you’re won’t immediately use.

These are just a few of the suggestions I could think of to help make a healthier diet more accessible. Do you all have any more ideas on how to offset the costs of healthy eating? Share them in the comments!


HGT 2013 Holiday Lookbook

December 5, 2013

If you’re like me, then this is without question, your favorite time of the year. It’s a season of celebration, reflection, love, and gratitude. It’s also the season of endless holiday parties and get togethers. These parties can be a lot of fun, but figuring out what to wear can be a pain. Well stress no more because I’ve got you covered. I did a holiday lookbook with three looks for events you may be invited to this holiday season. This was completely spontaneous. Last Wednesday morning I had the idea and that night we shot these looks. I have to thank my sister who not only acted as photographer but also as the makeup artist and hairstylist for these looks. She did an incredible job! Bonus: these looks don’t break the bank. Each one is under 100 dollars!
The Holiday Soiree
Total Outfit Cost: $97.80
Dress: 59.99
Shoes: 24.80
Bracelets: borrowed from mom
Ring: 13.00versona accessories

Dress: Versona (similar here), Shoes: Forever 21 (similar here), Bracelets: borrowed from Mom (similar here)
The Work Christmas Party
Total Outfit Cost: $97.18
Top: 11.89
Pants: 15.29
Shoes: 48.00
Necklace: 22.00
Bracelet: same as in first outfit
Top: JcPenney, Pants: JcPenney, Necklace: Versona (similar here), Shoes: Nordstrom (similar here), Bracelet: same as in first look
versona accessories
A Friendly Gathering
Total Outfit Cost: $99.80
Dress: 45.00
Shoes: 36.80
Necklace: 10.00
Bracelet: 8.00madewellforever 21
forever 21
Dress: Madewell (similar here), Necklace: Dress Up Boutique (similar here), Shoes: Forever 21, Bracelet: Versona (similar here)

Links to each of the items can be found in the captions under the pictures. Not all of the pieces I wore were available online, so I provided links to similar items.  I hope you enjoy this lookbook, and enjoy the rest of your week!

Would you rock any of these looks?

Which one is your fave?
Tell me in the comments!
Food Style

Thanksgiving 2013 Recap

December 1, 2013

I can’t believe Thanksgiving has already come and gone. I had such a great day. To start it off I made a “Thanks Giving” list of the things that I’m grateful for. On it I included my health, my God given purpose, and definitely this blog. I’m so grateful to have a space where I can express myself, share my interests, and hopefully connect with people. My contribution to the menu was mashed potatoes which turned out to be a delicious, last minute addition. My sister and I tag teamed it! I tried my best not to go crazy but with sweet potato cornbread muffins, sweet potato pie, and peach cobbler it was a challenge to say the least! I’m not even a big peach cobbler person but my sister did an amazing job. All of the food was great. Sorry that I didn’t take more pictures but my focus was on eating and trying not to immediately fall asleep afterwards.

Now I can’t talk about Thanksgiving without mentioning Black Friday. Really though, we should start calling it Black Thursday. Most of the deals I saw including those at Target, Walmart, and Best Buy, started on Thursday. Each year these sales and doorbusters start earlier and earlier. It’s gotten completely out of hand. Pretty soon people will be packing their Thanksgiving meals in lunch boxes and eating while they’re lined up outside (some people probably did that this year). Yes, the deals may be good, and I do love a good deal, but some things should be sacred. I didn’t do any “Black Friday” deals shopping per se but I did do some shopping (and yes it was actually on Friday). I went to two stores and got some beautiful jewelry and a great weekender bag.

How was your Thanksgiving? Did you get any good stuff during Black Friday? Tell me about in the comments!