Thank You COVID-19

I want to start this post off by saying that I’m not writing this to be insensitive of those that have been negatively impacted by this pandemic. Trust me, so have I. I just wanted to use this space to highlight some positivity within this uncertain time. I don’t want to focus on what I’ve lost. As I am returning back to the office that I’ve not been able to work in since March, I want to reflect on what I’ve gained, what I’ve been able to focus more energy into, and the experiences that I’ve been grateful to have over the last five months.

  1. Patience ~ I have been humbled. God always comes through though, but it may not be on “my time.” I’ve learned to trust the process.
  2. Lived in the present ~ I’m always so focused on my future. My next goal. My next project. Being forced to stay in the house with minimum funds made it so that I had no choice but to slow down and live in the now. Everything seemed paused which made me enjoy my limited company even more. I was also able to soak in all that I’ve accomplished and where I am now. 
  3. Spent more time with my boyfriend ~ We have been nailing this looooonnnngg distance for the last year but I must say I have loved staying with him for the last four months. It gave us a time to learn each other’s pet peeves, cleaning habits, daily routines, etc. before we actually live together and I loved every minute of it
  4. Was able to be included in family moments and birthdays that I haven’t been able to be around for in years ~ I have not been in my hometown this long since I was in high school. Because of school, I have missed many birthdays, but not this year. I have been able to be with my family, on my sister’s, one of my brother’s, my mom’s, my Papa’s, and my future sister in law’s birthday. I also was able to participate in family game nights, family dinners, and family cookouts. 
  5. Physical health ~ Although consistency slacks as I get busier, this has remained as a focus of mine from what I put into my body to how I take care of my body. There’s still room for improvement here. 
  6. Discovered my love for painting ~ I share in my last post, “Get Creative!” some of my latest painting projects. I plan to focus on that more while I have another week until classes restart.
  7. Poured more energy into passion projects ~ During the last five months, I have (although not alone): 
    1. Followed my mom’s lead on publishing her blog that she has been wanting to do for a while. I’m so happy that she included me and my friends on this project. Its hard to put into words what this blog means to me (but maybe I’ll write about it later),
    2. Completed 1 season of a podcast, Party of Four, with three other friends. We are currently working on re-branding for Season 2. New content, new structure, new everything and I’m really excited for that. 
    3. Just released Courtney and I’s very first episode of our YouTube Channel, The Real Ali and Court. Check it out and if you like what you see, make sure you subscribe! 

Here are some of my favorite moments:

Striving for a positive thoughts only mindset! Although, it may be difficult. I challenge you to put at least one positive thing that came from this pandemic in the comments. READY. SET. GO.  💞

LIVE.LAUGH.LOVE yourself first. Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex

Get Creative!

“The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul.” -Dieter F. Uchtdorf 

This is true, at least for me. 

I mentioned before that I have really been tuning into my creative side since I’ve been stuck in the house. I wanted to share with you some things that I have been working on. I also want to preface this post by saying that I completed these projects for enjoyment and expression, not for perfection.

Here they are: 

Customized Birthday Wine glasses 

In the beginning stages of being quarantined, I gave personal painting as birthday gifts, but I felt like it was time to level-up. For my mom’s (Thump), Courtney’s, and my boyfriend’s sister, Nakee’s. birthdays, I gave them glitter wine glasses with their name and their age on them. I had some issues with the glitter, but they came out nice and it’s the thought that counts, right? 

Flower Pots for my Ma “C” (grandmother) 

After I showed her my paintings, she gave me a few glass jars/pots that she wanted painted. She said “I don’t want flowers painted on them or for them to resemble anything I can buy from the store. I want something different”…so I delivered. She appreciated them. 

Corn Hole Board for Isaiah (my boyfriend) 

He saw the inspo on Facebook and asked if I could do it. If you know me, then you know, I  never back down from a challenge. Don’t even ask how long this took me to complete. Also, if you are wondering…no. We did not play it following the rules on the board every time. It is a nice design though.

The Real Ali and Court Teaser 

I have been learning how to use iMovie and if you have not seen this video already, then SURPRISE: Courtney and I have started a YouTube channel. Click the link to learn a little more about what our videos are going to be about, and while you’re there please subscribe because our first video airs on August 12th. We can’t wait to share what we’ve been working on with you. 

If you have any questions about how I created any of these projects, or what materials I used, let me know. I’m not a professional or anything, but I may be able to help! If you would like to give me new project inspo, share in the comments any projects that you’ve been working on. 

As we are continuing to showcase black-owned businesses, I would like to share how my high school and college friend gets creative.

Corrine 🌸 Rinne The Writer 🖋

“Why did you begin writing poems?”

“I’ve always been better at expressing myself through writing versus speaking. I got to a point where I had so much built up and the easiest way to release was by writing. For the longest time, I would just think of poetry in my head but wouldn’t physically write it. I didn’t start writing consistently until I took a poetry class in college and fell in love. I fell in love with watching my classmates react to my poetry and that alone made me want to write more. I love to make people feel.”

Her favorite poem that she’s written is:

As the moon shines down,
She speaks to me softly.
Reminding me that we
are one in the same. Ever
changing and shifting but

still

each part remains. Every
piece of me is present even
when unseen. I speak back
to her —

“thank you, for
teaching me how to come
back to myself even when
I’m evolving.”

She’s been writing for a while, but one of her most recent projects has been creating these “GENERATIONAL CURSE BREAKER” t-shirts, and I of course had to support! Not only did I think this message was dope, but she donated all of the revenue!

“What made you create these t-shirts? Why did you choose to release them?”

“I’ve always considered myself a generational curse breaker, especially being the first in my family to go to college. One day, I just felt like it would make a great t-shirt. I love simple clothing and this message is simple but powerful. So I created it. I had no intention in releasing it any time soon but then the tragic killing of George Floyd happened. Just like the rest of my people, I was just fed up with not doing anything. And then shortly after, I learned about Breonna Taylor. So I decided to release my shirt a little bit sooner. One, to provide people with a great shirt but also to give back and help support the movement. I definitely plan to release more t-shirts in the future.”

Her IG handles are:

@_corriiii (personal account)

@rinnesworld_ofwords (poetry account)

@authenti.cityshop (business account)

Show this creative some love!

Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex

Let’s Check-in:

As I was brainstorming what to write about this week, Courtney B. asked me two questions, 

“Where are you right now, as in mentally?”

-and- 

“What is something you’ve been thinking about often?”

So, here’s my response: 

I am actually in a great place right now. I’m surprisingly happy, excited and feeling empowered/motivated…mostly, but there’s the occasional anxiety, stress, and fear. However, the other emotions overpower the negative ones.

I say “surprisingly” because there are so many things going on in the world that are out of my control. However, I’ve decided to focus on the things that are in my control, and I just roll with the punches on anything else that comes my way. I’ve been working on not overthinking or stressing, and just living in every moment as it is. Nothing more, nothing less. That has given me a sense of peace. I am content. 

I’ve also found myself grateful for the small things more. 

Like a sushi date with my boyfriend on the back of his truck. 

Like being able to work outside while the sun is shining and  

Like being able to drive to my moms house whenever I want to (I haven’t lived this close to home since I graduated high school). 

But I’m also grateful for the bigger things that I took for granted before 

Like being able to pay all of my bills on-time 

Like being in good health 

Like having a strong support system. 

To the second question, I have been thinking about MANY THINGS! I’m thinking about new passion projects that I am very very excited to share with you all. I am thinking about ways to empower others and support our community, which is partially being done by showcasing and supporting black businesses on this blog and in real life.

Although we are in a very uncertain time, I am very excited for my future. I’m excited to see what’s to come for me, my family, my friends, and my community. I’m excited to see how far we’ll go. 

Because of this extremely determined state that I am in, I am the hardest on myself right now, so some days I have to give myself gratitude. You shouldn’t wait for praise from others. Give yourself the credit that you deserve. Pour all of the energy and love you give to others, into yourself sometimes, because you deserve it. 

Lastly, be kind to yourself. Something that I have been learning to be okay with is imperfection. If you are “perfect” at everything, you have no room to grow. There is no up from there. You have nothing to look forward to. Also, some days you are going to be at 100%, you are going to feel motivated, determined, and happy. But some days you are going to feel lazy, unproductive, and you’re just going to want to sit on the couch, watch movies, and eat pizza; and that is okay too. Self-care days and moments that you are working at a slow pace, are not signs of defeat. They are necessary in order to work at the speed you work at every other day of the month. 

Just don’t let those days keep you down. If you have 2 days this month where you’re “not-so-productive”, guess what? You have 28-29 more days to be on your sh** and that my friend is a win. You should feel proud of that. How much has that improved from last month? From the last six months? From the last year? Recognize that progression and applaud yourself for that. Keep growing, you are doing amazing! 

My two goals/self-care practices this month are: 

#2 : To read 30 minutes everyday for my pleasure. Right now, I am reading “We’re Going to Need More Wine” by Gabrielle Union. It is best paired with a glass of wine and a burning candle. I will be reading “Becoming” by Michelle Obama next month. I was also gifted her “guided journal for discovering your voice,” that I am very excited to start working in.

#2 : Complete the Toffi (I’ll explain more about what Toffi is in a later post) July 30 mile challenge. I was challenged by a friend to run a total of 30 miles this month. It is definitely holding me accountable. 

“Where are you right now, as in mentally?” and what are your July goals? Let me know in the comments!!

LIVE.LAUGH.LOVE yourself first. Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex

What Young Black Queens Need To Hear

To all my young black queens, this message is for you. As well as for your parents, mentors, and educators. 

As you grow up, you may go through periods where you feel defeated, insecure, and like you aren’t enough. I am here to tell you that you are strong, unstoppable, and unmatched. 

I have felt inequality, racism, and a sense of “otherness” based on my skin color in educational and professional settings, and as a black dancer. Be courageous for those that look up to you and that will follow in your footsteps later. It took me a while to recognize the strength and power that I have, which is why I think it is extremely important to uplift, guide, and inspire our black girls early. 

I created a list of statements that my mom instilled in me, as well as some that I’ve learned along the way:  

You are intelligent. 

You are creative and talented. 

You are beyond beautiful. Your mind. Your heart. Your smile. You skin. Your natural curls. Your afro. Your hair in general.

Your melanin is radiant, regardless of how light or dark it is. 

You are strong and capable. 

You are kind.

Your passion and determination is inspiring.

…and I cannot say this enough – YOU ARE ENOUGH!

I understand that you can hear this from home and yet, the world and society may still make you feel less than at times. YOU ARE NOT. Parents, mentors, and educators, please praise your black queens more often. They need it. You may feel that it is implied, but from experience, it is not always, so let them hear this from you. Read these as many times as you feel necessary and share them with all. 

Here are pictures of a few that I’ve been blessed to be a sister to, meet, mentor, or teach. I want you all to know that I am forever proud of you and you are capable of anything you put your mind to. I know it because I’ve seen it. We may not talk to or see each other much, but always remember, I am continuously rooting for you and watching your growth. 

Love you always -Alex (or some may refer to me as Miss Alex or Sunny)

Design Essentials Hair Review

The next company on the list of hair reviews is Design Essentials, another black owned hair company. So, lets get into It.

Step 0: I decided to add a fun picture of my hair in its natural state pre-wash.

Step 1: I washed my hair with the Almond & Avocado Shampoo.

  • Hello Curls 😍. This shampoo left my hair so soft. I will definitely be using this again. I am not a fan of avocados so I don’t care for the smell, but I wouldn’t consider it a bad smell. 

Step 2: I used the Almond & Avocado Conditioner as my hair mask, so I let that sink for an hour with a Wal-mart bag (classy, I know 😂). Then, I rinsed.

  • When I first applied my curls remained the same, but the texture changed. After rinsing it out, the texture and curls changed. It felt a tad more brittle after the conditioner was rinsed out. 

Step 3: I separated my hair into 6 sections and finger detangled the Almond & Avocado Leave-In Conditioner into each. 

  • The softness began to come back, but not a fave. The picture shows that it made my curls a little more defined and tight compared to the other conditioner.

Step 4: Lastly, I used the Almond & Avocado Curl Defining Mousse to rod my hair. 

  • I was pretty impressed with the slight shine that it gave my hair initially, as well as the lack of frizz. My arms were tired by the time I finished washing my hair, so I only roded half of my hair, that night and the rest in the morning. The picture that is shown is me air drying the rest of it on our morning walk. 

And this was the final product: 

I was very happy with the way my curls came out. They were pretty defined and the slight frizz that it does half is partially due to the un-rolling method that I have…I will work on that lol Anyway I loved this style.

I wore this style for about a week with no additional products, but added a headband by day 3. 

I more than likely only use the mousse for this style. I was also a fan of the shampoo, so I do see a repurchase in my future. I am interested to see if the other scents produce the same results. Is anybody else a fan of Design Essentials? Which products of theirs do you use?

LIVE.LAUGH.LOVE yourself first. Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex

I Am Not My Hair…Or Am I?

Does your hair define you? 

I am a part of a podcast, The Party of Four, and in our first episode we unpacked and discussed the Netflix series, Self Made. Hair, black hair specifically, was a major focus point of this short series. At the end of that podcast episode, we shared our perspective on if our hair defines us.

This is a summary and continuation of my response: 

I had traditional locs for 16 years. For so long, I did indeed believe that my hair defined me. I was 6 when my mom started them, so I did not know who Alex was without locs. If I cut them will there be anything of substance left? I have been known as the girl with the locs practically my whole life. Who would I be when I cut them? Would I be less attractive, less exciting, less confident? 

So I went short…real short, for many reasons. One being that I needed to let a lot of sh** go. This may sound odd to some but memories that I wanted to forget were trapped in my mind and in my locs, and it was holding me back. So, cutting them off completely, signified that process. 

This is my hair journey:

Pre-locs:

Beginning stages:

High School – College Years

My locs were a part of me, and I assumed that was the first and only thing people saw when they saw me. My mom is a natural hair consultant, so she did my hair until I began to do my own around the 5th grade, and for special occasions (birthdays, dance recitals, school dances, when I didn’t feel like it lol). Not many people my age had traditional locs, not at my school  anyway, so they made me stand out from others, they made me unique. I would dye them and style them in different ways and I would get questions and compliments all day. If I cut them what would be left? Would I even know how to do my own hair? 

I went back and forth about cutting my locs for years so one day I was just like no better time than now. I went to my mom’s house and asked her to cut my hair with no plan on what I was going to do next. She seemed slightly confused…slightly hesitant, but did what I asked. 

I felt free…for about 2 days… and then balled my little eyes out. What was I thinking? I didn’t have a comb or brush, because I never had to use one before. The only hair products that I had besides shampoo and conditioner was gel. What kind of hair styles could I even do with my hair at this length…so I went shorter.

Chavon actually was the one to cut it the second time. She then styled it for me for a girls night out and boosted my head UPPPP. I started to gain confidence.

About two weeks after that, I realized it was hard to maintain, learn how to do, and have it like I like it for work, so I went even shorter and dyed it. Honey, let me tell you, after that, you could not tell me anything. I was absolutely in love. 

I was then able to grow with my hair and perfect my hair styling craft as it grew out. It was still a slightly difficult process, but I was up for the challenge. I would go through periods where I felt beautiful and creative and the next I would be lacking confidence and feeling slightly defeated. I enjoyed seeing my progress though, my growth,  and how creative I could get. 

Once it did start to grow out, I didn’t realize how long it would take. Shampoo, conditioner, hair masks, detangler, oil, curling cream. “I took my locs for granted” is an understatement. After all that, I still have to part my hair, flat twist it, two strand twist, coil it, something. This was all very very new to me. Shout out to the many black queens that make hair videos and update them to YouTube because those were a life saver. 

So, after all of that, did my hair define? Does it still define me ? 

I like to view my hair as an extension of me. When I had the short cut, I was all that was left (because I barely had any hair LOL). Throughout that process, I started to realize that there is so much more to me. Who I am doesn’t change when my hairstyle does.

*plays I Am Not My Hair by India.Arie*

My hair is a factor that is considered when defining me but I am not defined solely on that. It makes me proud to see what I can do, even if it may seem like a simple style to others. As long as I like it, and I can recognize my progress, that’s all that matters. It’s a form of self-expression. It’s a form of self-love. We have a complicated and frustrating relationship but it’s a part of me that I love and am proud of. 

The answer is different for everyone. This is just mine. 

As I am continuing through this process, I still haven’t found my ultimate go-to products, so I was very excited when my mom, Thump, had the idea to do hair reviews. For the rest of the week, we will continue sharing a series of these reviews from various companies. Today, I want to share one of my favorites so far, Taliah Waajid, a black-owned hair product.

Step 1: I started with the Silk Milk Curl Softening Shampoo.

It left my hair soft and my curls started to come through. The smell was subtle. It smelt good but not like anything specific.

Step 2: I applied the Repair & Restore Hair Strengthening Treatment Masque and let it sit for about an hour.

Now this did not smell good at all, but I have to say it really started to define my curls and allowed my hair to remain soft 

Step 3: I used the Great Detangler: Leave-in Conditioner and Co-Wash. 

I used it as a leave-in and first finger detangled. Then, I used my detangler brush to thoroughly detangle in sections. This had the same smell as the shampoo.

Step 4: I had both the Curl Sealer and Curly Curl Cream, but it is stated that they should not be used together. So, I used the Curl Sealer to do my two braids in the front of my hair.

Step 5: I then used the Curly Curl Cream on the rest of my hair to do mini twists.

I was very impressed with both products. They seemed to both leave my hair with a shine that I barely see with any hair products. My twists also stayed almost as tight as they did when I first did my hair, which also rarely happens.

Out of all of the products that I used from her, I will continue to use the Curly Curl Cream or Curl Sealer. The day after my initial wash, I twisted everything except the front two braids. Unfortunately though, as soon as I took the twists loose (which was my target hairstyle), it poured down raining outside and the style was ruined. I will definitely be using some of her products in the future. The Curly Curl Cream gets a 10/10 from me though. I’ve also tried a wash-and-go with the cream applied to seal my curls. I am still perfecting my wash-and-go skills, so if you have any tips, please let me know! 

Comment your favorite products below or share your experience with Taliah Waajid along with your hair type! 

LIVE.LAUGH.LOVE yourself first. Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex

Celebrating My TNT Sistas

For those of you that don’t know, I am the only Thump in Thought member whose birthday does not fall in June. I am a proud Aquarius baby, but I love my Gemini and Cancer sisters. Being that the first one is this Friday, I wanted to take the time to celebrate, highlight, and show my admiration for them. So, let’s get into it… 

Chavon – 12th

Chavon and I met during my sophomore year of undergrad and we clicked pretty fast. Chavon has such a genuine heart, exerts positive energy, and is always very honest. She gets straight to the point and that’s what I love about her most. I know that I can trust her with literally anything and she knows it’s the same vice versa. Love you Vony Von.

Thumper – 16th
Yall call her Thump, but I call her Ma. Yes, Thumper is my phenomenal, goofy, strong mother and I am her first born. Words cannot express the gratitude and love that I have for this lady. We butt heads often but she has my back always and she knows I have hers. Thank you for always making a way for my siblings and I. Thank you for answering my FaceTime calls even when you don’t want to. Thank you for cooking me meals whenever I come home. Thank you for passing on your knowledge, lessons, giving and caring heart, and the continuous love (including tough love) you give to us. Much love from your first and favorite 😉

E – 18th 

My very first sister. Truth be told, you are my mom’s real first child, lol. I guess we can share that spot. Sometimes, I wish we could go back to when we were younger…playing on the playground, sleepovers, dress up…I miss it and I miss you. I don’t know if I told you before, but I have always admired and looked up to you. You are an amazing mother to your children and the energy that you give off is contagious. I miss you much and I love you forever.

Courtney B. -26th

Courttttt. This is my girl. We’ve known each other since middle school, but really started becoming close in undergrad. We even lived together the year before I moved to Florida and she moved to ATL. She gets me and let me just say, that’s hard to achieve and she does it with ease. Our memories speak louder than these words, so here are some of my favorites: London, much needed vent sessions, our graduation weekend, collaborative dinners (with Wine, of course lol), laughing on cue to prepare for your acting career, Bonefish Grill dates…to be honest we have way too many to name here. I guess I just want to say I can’t wait for many more, starting with your birthday weekend. Love you and see you soon!!

I love and appreciate all these women greatly and I’m glad you are all in my life. I hope you enjoy your birthday month because you deserve it!! 

-Alex aka Ali aka Sunny aka Amica

A Love Letter To My Black Brothers

To my Black Kings; 

To my younger brothers, my boyfriend, my friends that feel like brothers, my cousins, my uncles, my grandfather, my future son.

To the ones that I’ve only met in passing.

To the ones I’ve never met at all.

Words can not adequately express the emotions that are running through my body. The disgust, the hatred, the sadness, the pain, the exhaustion, the fear that I feel for you…

I’m scared for you. I’m hurting with you.  And I’m outraged.

Aside from that…shit, because of that, I want you to know this: 

You are appreciated. You are loved.  And you are valued.

Your brown skin is beautiful. You are in my prayers.  AND YOUR LIFE MATTERS!

Send this to the Black Kings in your life to remind them of the love you have for them. To remind them that their value does not diminish based on the ignorance of others. 

Here are some pictures of some of mine:

Dear Black Kings, 

I love you. 

 Forever and Always, 

-Alex 🖤

Growing & Glowing

Glow-Getter (noun): A driven busy gal who strives to achieve her goals in life while attaining a beautiful glow both inside and out. 

I found this definition and I think it fits perfectly. 

If you know me then you know that I stay “booked & busy” and I am very goal driven. Once I reach one goal, I am on to the next. 

I tend to focus on improving one aspect of my life a month. Examples of these aspects include improving physically, mentally, socially, professionally, and financially. The issue with that though is that sometimes when I move on to the next month, I forget about the aspect of my life that I focused on the previous month. 

So now that I have all of this extra time (since I am stuck in the house most days). I am focused on growing holistically, so that once I am back to my normal schedule I will already be in the habit of thinking holistically. 

Although some aspects are more difficult to focus on right now, I will not let that stunt my growth. I’ve mentioned before that I believe that this is an excellent time to focus on YOU, so I am of course doing the same. You may feel discouraged and unmotivated because of the craziness going on around you that is out of your control, but one thing that you can control right now is you and your mindset. 

“Like wildflowers; You must allow yourself to grow in all the places people thought you never would.” -E.V

Here’s some insight on my growth in just these 2 areas: 

Physically 

I have not been working out 6 days a week like I planned (this includes 3 days of cardio and/or long walks), due to classes restarting, but I have been consistently committed to at least 4 days a week. That’s progress from not doing anything physical a month ago, so I am proud of myself and I am starting to see results. . 

As far as food, I only order-in once a week and I have cut back tremendously on pork and starch, and increased my fruit, vegetable, and water intake. I have had more energy, making me more productive, thus increasing my mood. This is honestly only the beginning.

Mentally

This will forever be a focus of mine, as I’ve shared previously, I think that your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Honestly, this blog has been very therapeutic for me. I am able to share my thoughts in a positive way that may be able to help and uplift others. Thank you to everyone that has been supportive and engaging. You are all very appreciated!!

As I mentioned before, dancing and painting are also therapeutic for me.

Since classes have started though, I have not been focusing on those things lately, so that is something that I will work on fitting into my schedule over the next week. Although, I am not able to get my nails, lashes, or hair done, go to the hot tub, go shopping, or take myself out to eat right right now, I have been practicing self-care in the form of learning and doing my own hair, learning how to do my own lashes, scheduling FaceTime calls with friends (because I am missing my normal day filled of human interaction), finding new nature trails, or even riding around in my car listening to music just because I want to get out of the house for a while (SINCE I’M HERE ALMOST ALL DAY EVERY DAY). I am also appreciating the opportunity that I was given to SLOW DOWN and not be on the go all the time. Self-care looks a little different to me during this time, but it is still very much a necessity and it is adaptable to what I need that particular week. 

If you feel comfortable, in the comments, share some areas that you have been focusing on improving, or any tips you have for me to continue my growth! 

When you’re glowing on the inside, it is translated to the outside. Your skin begins to glow and you have a positive aura around you. I believe you should always be striving for your best self. Things do not change overnight and the process is continuous and sometimes challenging, but very much worth it. When you feel yourself getting discouraged because you are not the person you envisioned, or you have not reached your ultimate goals in many of the areas that I mentioned, reflect on the person you were 2 years ago, or even 6 months ago. If you are closer to the person you want to be or closer to your goals, then you are succeeding…you are growing. If you are not, focus on you, and take the steps to do that. Yes, unexpected circumstances arise, but you are in control of your future. Take advantage of that for YOU.

LIVE.LAUGH.LOVE yourself first. Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex

You Look So Much Better When You SMILE

In honor of National Smile Month, I want to share with you all, my smile and I’s relationship. Just like all relationships, we’ve had our good and “not-so-good” moments.

Fun fact: I hated my smile when I was younger. 

One of the only things that my father left me was this huge gap. I used to think…out of all things…you left me with this one thing that I can’t hide. 

At one point, I wanted to smile with my mouth closed as much as I could, and I couldn’t get braces due to it being non-medical (cosmetic), therefore the insurance wouldn’t pay for it. 

Plot Twist: I love to laugh and it is very hard to laugh with my mouth closed. 

Fast forward: I started smiling more. I realized that my smile actually looked better when I showed my teeth, LOL. I began getting compliments on my smile (maybe because it was actually genuine now). Surprisingly, my smile started to become my thing. Not that fake “pose for a picture” smile, I’m talking about  the “I’m loving life” smile, the “I’m blessed” smile, the “I’m genuinely happy” smile, the “off guard, I’m being goofy” smile. I’ve been told it’s contagious, so here it is…

The point of me sharing this story is to say, embrace your insecurities. Nine times out of ten, you are your biggest critic. Love all of you, for what you are and how you were made. 

For fun here is a short list of things that make me smile: 

  1. Pepperoni pizza from Papa Johns
  2. When my baby brother tells me his jokes 
  3. Making other people smile
  4. Trying out new recipes that actually taste good 
  5. My bank account on pay day 
  6. Family dinner/game nights 
  7. Hot showers after a long day 
  8. Seeing my boyfriend dance when he doesn’t think I’m watching
  9. Surprise date nights
  10. Days that I’m able to do absolutely nothing are tied with self-care days 

Comment below with a picture of you smiling or a list of things that make you smile!!

LIVE.LAUGH.LOVE yourself first. Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex