December 31, 2013

MY 2014 promises to myself

I shared my 2014 goal setting method in this post - "promises to myself" - and already it's gotten lots of views, repins, retweets, you name it. I think it's a simple, yet personal way to set a diverse group of goals. After you fill in the template for your personal promises, read them out loud to yourself and keep the printable somewhere you'll see it often as a reminder. As the year goes by, these promises will stick with you because you've made them for you

In 2014, I promise myself that...

I will finally finish writing my next book.
I have two book projects in the works, but haven't completed either and I really want to. Writing and publishing a book was a goal for 2013 and that happened in January, so I'm hoping to finish this next book project in early 2014.

I will stop taking on too many projects at once.
Speaking of projects..I'm limiting myself to 3 projects a month. I can get carried away with working because I love the work I'm doing and it's genuinely fun for me. But at the same time, I don't want the work to become too stressful or takeover, so I'm limiting the projects I take on simultaneously.

I will start opening up more to those I trust.
Although I'm a blogger and communications lover, I'm still a pretty private person. Only my closest friends and family know the deep stuff. I definitely share aspects of my life on my blog, but I also definitely keep a lot of things to myself. I'm an internalizer, introvert, thinker, and I typically process emotions and situations on my own. I know this will be a year full of adventure and I'm prepared to open up more to my loved ones and experience the thrills of life with them.

I will eat more green vegetables.
I started clean eating the second half of 2013 and it's been fantastic. Since I'm anemic, I have to eat foods with iron and green vegetables qualify. I'm promising to incorporate green veggies into my daily diet, just like sweet tea is in my weekly diet.

I will visit Las Vegas with friends.
Doesn't everyone want to do this once they reach age 21? I'm not even interested in gambling, but I am kind of dying to visit Vegas and have a low key version of the Hangover adventure with some friends! Maybe Spring Break or maybe summer? I'm promising myself that it will happen.

I will save $25 a month.
Saving is such an issue for me. Spending is so easy for me. So I had to include a savings promise into my list. I think $25 is doable, and it's nice knowing that at the end of the year I'll have saved $300!

I will volunteer 40+ hours this year.
I'm very involved in an Atlanta nonprofit, Foreverfamily, so most of my volunteering takes place within that organization. But I want to do more in my community. In high school and college there were hour requirements for philanthropy. It's tedious to have a self-requirement, but it works! I do plan to go above those 40 hours before the year ends!

I will dedicate more time to my family.
The older I get, the more I realize how precious family time truly is. Family makes me crazy, but at the same time I'm always craving more laughs, experiences, and memories with them. I'm reminded daily that time with my loved ones is limited and I plan to continue dedicating more time to my family.

I will read Oprah's book list.
Because books are great, and Oprah's list is awesome - am I right?

I will let go of toxic relationships.
Letting go of relationships is always tough. But I'm getting better at cutting ties with negative influencers or flaky friends. I take relationships seriously and I'm happy having a few close friends, as long as those friends are genuine, encouraging, and ambitious. I want 2014 to be an incredible year, which means I'll need to be surrounded by incredible people.

I will unplug at least twice a month.
Earlier this year I went a day without my iPhone and it was eerily fantastic. As my new company launches, I fear my iPhone and iPad will be attached to my body. That's why I'm promising myself to unplug from electronics/internet/social media at least twice a month and truly take a break from it all.

Those are my promises. 
It's New Year's Eve - what's your goal(s) for 2014? I'm curious!

December 30, 2013

#NoHeatDecember {week 4}

This is major. #NoHeatDecember is over after tomorrow, and no heat has touched my hair since November. This is a personal record for me, but it's also fun and exciting knowing that others have completed this natural hair challenge. I honestly had hesitations for this challenge (even though I suggested it on my blog to others), but I stuck to it and had great friends and viewers that helped me stick to it. 

My curl pattern definitely became more defined over the month and I learned to love my hair however it turned out. My hair became free, and so did I. I figured out which products work best for my hair and which ones don't work (something I'd been neglecting since going natural).The style I rocked the most was just a wash-and-go, but I did try some other styles too. Like this low bun.

I think it grew a little, but I know it got a LOT thicker. I'm excited to get it straightened in January and compare older photos!

I'm really happy I had close friends Jade & Jasmine participating in the challenge too. My friend Jade is so great with styling her natural hair and pulling off every single look. 

I loveeee these curls Jade rocked for the last week of December! So fab.

And my friend Jasmine is amazing when it comes to rocking the big hair, I love it!

A HUGE thank you to every lady who participated in #NoHeatDecember!! 


Post to Instagram or Twitter using the #NoHeatDecember or mention me so I can check out your look! 

After tomorrow, we can officially say that #WeDidIt! I appreciate your participation and I'm sure your hair appreciates the break from the heat! What a great way to end the year…with another goal completed. Look out for my post in January with my hair straightened for my birthday!


Reflecting on 2013

It's about that time, isn't it? To think back over 2013 and say "oh yeah, that DID happen this year!" It's time to think of the good (and not so good) life events from this past year. The amazing thing about having a blog and blogging regularly & authentically, I can quickly look back on every month of this year through my posts. I can summarize 2013 in one phrase:

A year of challenges that increased my ambition & personal growth, which led to accomplishments. 

Here's my year in review:



Spent Valentine's Day very single


Met my (now) boyfriend :)


Got rejected/ignored by 20+ job/programs I applied to; panicking as graduation approached
Got accepted into the Governor's Fellowship Program


Said goodbye to friends who moved away for work


Took the GRE


Applied to grad schools


New roommate, same place




Got into grad school at Georgia Tech


What was great or not so great about this year for you? 
If you did a similar post, leave a link or just a comment!

December 28, 2013

Casual holiday dinner party look

This holiday season has been full of one thing: eating. We've gone to and hosted a ridiculous amount of dinner parties. Y'all know I have a serious love for food, so I'm enjoying it, but it's so hard to maintain my clean eating lifestyle with the daily temptation. Getting dressed for all of these dinner parties is another task. But I've finally gotten it down by alternating dresses and this holiday casual look I'm rocking here.

I layered a navy and white polka dot shirt with this basic creme sweatshirt. 

Then, I added on a pearl strand a a peach colored necklace. I've been wearing my glasses a lot recently, but I think they help complete the look too. I love wearing this top layering with jeans, a skirt + tights, or some cute pants!

Thoughts? What's your go-to dinner party look?

December 27, 2013

2013 New Year's Eve Atlanta Events

Last year's #NYE post received over 12,000 views, so I had to do another one for this year! In a city like Atlanta, of course, there are TONS of events going on. Here's what I've gathered so far that seem like really fun events!

Check back for updates & additions, and leave a comment if you have more suggestions on how to bring in 2014!


Classic Events
Church Services/Celebrations


Other ways to celebrate
  • NYE at Atlanta Symphony Hall
  • Watching NYE celebrations from the warmth of your home
  • Fun activities with friends/family to countdown
  • Themed date night
  • Hosting your own NYE party
  • Working out into the New Year
  • Babysitting (earning money as you enter the New Year)
  • Doing good deeds for others to make their New Year special

Regardless of the way you choose to bring in the New Year, I hope it's a fantastic night for you! 

Blue Christmas

Things have been pretty quiet in the blogasphere this week. Understandable because bloggers are people too and occasionally like to take a break from blogging and reading blogs to spend more time with family. But people (myself included) are getting back to the normal routine. I'm easing my way back into posting by sharing my outfits from this holiday break. I plan on doing more posts sharing my outfits in 2014, so why not start now!

I wore this outfit on Christmas Day when we traveled about an hour south to my uncle's house for dinner. I happily and purposely wore my new "dancer" pants with a tank top and denim button up. I also added my black combat boots to this look, to make it a little edgier. 

Styling combat boots to look cute/girly can be difficult, but I think they are great with colored pants or a short skirt and tights.

I loved mixing these shades of blue with the neutral tank & gold jewelry from LoopsWay..

Let me know what you think of this outfit and what you wore on Christmas Day!

December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Christmas Day is finally here!!!! I'll spend most of today relaxing, eating, and just enjoying time with the family. Last night was our annual Christmas Eve dinner party and it was lots of fun! I'll share more details soon, but I did want to share my Christmas Eve outfit - let me know what you think!

I went with a tie-dye gray/deep purple tunic dress with super detailed beading around the sides. I saw it at Forever 21 and knew I had to wear it for our party. For my jewelry, I layered a long pearl strand with a crystal strand. Since the party was at our house, I didn't wear shoes - just black tights! See more photos below:

Merry Christmas!! Enjoy your day! 


December 23, 2013

2014 promises to myself {printable}

Oh my goodness, just one week left of 2013. Every year I switch up how I set my resolutions (I don't like that word) for the year. Last year I made a list of must-do's and realistic goals, and it worked really well! This year, I'm getting more personal and making some promises to myself.

I took a leadership course once and we learned how to state goals: I will do______. So that's kind of the format I'm using for 2014 goal setting. I'm also working on a more detailed list of 100 to-do's once I turn 23…but you'll get to see that later.

I've made this template easy and I think most people can fill it in to fit their specific needs.

If you decided to use this method, let me know and I'll check out your list of promises. 

I'll be sharing mine on Dec. 31! :)

View the printable here.

In case you missed it...

I'm always running into funny/interesting/thought provoking/ridiculous things on the Internet and I usually email the links to the friend(s) I think will appreciate them the most. However, I want to start sharing these gems with you in a roundup I'm calling "In case you missed it…"

Enjoy some of my favorite recent posts on the Internet!

23 signs you're obsessed with Christmas
We all have that friend…who starts counting down to the next Christmas ON Christmas Day. They celebrate all month long and never let you forget what time of the year it is. This post gave me a good laugh because I'm guilty of a few…especially the red cups at Starbucks signifying its own holiday!

via Buzzfeed

Which American Girl Doll Are You?
My friend Brooke shared this on Twitter and since I had TWO American Girl dolls growing up (and tons of outfits), I had to take this short quiz. I got Samantha, and the description is pretty spot on, haha! If you take it, share which one you are!

via Buzzfeed

As I start taking photos as a part-time profession, I'm constantly researching amazing photographs and photographers. These were incredible and the short stories behind them made them even more powerful.

via viralnova

Although I don't completely agree with the title…people can change! It's a really good read and really makes you think. I love articles like that.

via Forbes

If you haven't done some online shopping at Red Dress Boutique, you are missing out!! They have some of the trendiest and cutest dresses, sweaters, tops, accessories, and shoes! Their Facebook page is really fun to follow and the background story on the company and founder is really impressive. They're based here in Georgia, but ship all over! I LOVE their holiday looks!

Had you already checked out any of these things this month? 
What'd you think?

December 22, 2013

#NoHeatDecember {Week 3}

Week 3!! And still going strong. I haven't picked up a heat tool for my hair since November…unbelievable. What makes this challenge so fun and motivational is finding out other women from across the GLOBE are participating too! 

Just search #NoHeatDecember on Twitter and Instagram

I learn more about my hair and natural hair in general every day and this month has really helped me understand what my hair needs to stay healthy during the craziest weather conditions (December in ATL). I have no regrets, but I know this coming week will be tough! I don't think there's ever been a Christmas when my hair wasn't straightened! Thankfully, I love trying new things :)

I'm really proud of everyone who has joined in - for a few days, a week, or the entire month!


Jade with a fancy bun

Jade with a twist-out

Jasmine's up-do from her Bantu knot results

Check out our list - if you'd like to join, leave a comment saying so!
 Join now or hold your peace until the next #NaturalHairChallenge :)


I can't wait to hear and see everyone's results in January!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...