GRL PWR

WHO RUNS THE WORLD? 

IMG_1453.JPG

You may have just yelled out the word 'GIRLS' and thought oh, I said that because the Queen Bey rammed it into my brain for the last 6 years (yes, "GIRLS" came out 6 years ago). But in all reality, you said it because it's true. Girls really do run the world. I mean, the ratio between women and men in the US is 100 to 96.7 if you really want to get technical, but who's actually counting... (probably my mother every time she thinks about how old I'm getting without finding a husband yet).

With all this estrogen in the room, how can you not feel the greatness of being female!?!

This is why I'm so obsessed with these new logo tees and sweatshirts by blogger Josefin Ekstrom for Na-KD.com (aka my new online shopping addiction). Not only are these tops a great fit, I love the simple yet powerful message they represent. 

A while ago, I saw a viral video where a 8-year-old girl explained why it wasn't fair that girls clothing featured messages promoting beauty while boys tops featured empowerment messages about heroism and taking on the world. 

It really got me thinking about how important it is to promote confidence beyond the physical when it comes to females. And when I found these tops, I automatically felt a connection to their message.

Short and to the point, women are 'Fearless' and you should recognize 'Girl Power'.

IMG_1448.JPG

What I love most about Na-KD's selection of statement apparel is the luxurious quality and chic style. These are definitely not like the statement tee's we clambered for at Rue21 or Wet Seal back in the day. They give off an air of sophistication with their clean aesthetic and casual fit. Both the sweaters and the tees have a relaxed box fit that are perfect to wear with high waisted jeans, which is my go to look for 2017.

Check out Na-KD's collection here and get your 'GRL PWR' on for 2017!

Why I March...

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.-Martin Luther King Jr.

This year's Presidential election has been the ultimate example of an overqualified female competing for a job with a man who's not up to par. If I must be honest, I'm a bit embarrased to know that we've actually gotten this far in the electoral process with such a visible circus, but what would America be without some good Reality "realness".

Besides the shit-show that is our reality right now, I've gained a new found appreciation for what makes me a young, successful and may I say brilliant woman. Since I was young, I've had strong female role models around me. From my mother being the first female to graduate college in her immediate family to my great-grandmother being a Latina civil rights activist, I've always had a strong sense of female empowerment. And with that view I've also seen how all of that greatness can be overshadowed by categories like gender, race, and age.

I myself have experienced some of those brick walls that leave me thinking, 'Oh my gosh--how am I going to get them to see me beyond the labels?'

But then I realize I'm Fabulous, Fearless, and Freakin' Powerful.

The first time I heard about the Women's March on Washington, my cousin Julia sent an email to my mother, sister and me saying "No questions asked, WE HAVE TO GO."

You see, when I think about why I plan to march, I think about all the things that I have pushed to achieve and focus on. I think about all of the women I've idolized as self-aware risk takers who don't take no for an answer. I think about how lucky I have been in this life and what I'm contributing to in order to preserve the same rights I've been granted for future generations to follow.  So, why wouldn't I march?

We represent a new era of women. An era that has taken blood, sweat, tears and years to reach, but is ready to be heard. Unlike movements in the past, this March signifies an intersection and new identity of True Womanhood. This is not just a social justice movement; it's beyond being progressive. It's claiming our position at the table that this political shift has seemed to dismiss. For far too long, we've pushed for equality and equity, and yes there has been progress, but deep down in the soil of this country there is an underlining and distinct form of misogyny that happily showed its ugly face last year--mocking what we've believed to be change and growth. This march is not just speaking for the rights of just one type of woman, it's speaking, effecting and touching every community.

So just as Martin Luther King Jr' once said, "The time is always right to do what's right." 

I'm not just going to be marching for myself, I'm going to be marching for what's fundamentally right.

I Matter. You Matter. Women Matter. We all Matter.

For more information on the march:

WOMEN'S MARCH ON WASHINGTON

10AM, SATURDAY, JANUARY 21, 2017

STARTING LOCATION: Independence Avenue and Third Street SW

 

JOIN THE WOMEN'S MARCH ON WASHINGTON: CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

 

SEVEN FOR '17

It's officially 2017 and most people can only think about thank goodness 2016 is over. I don't really blame them...it was a pretty shitty year on so many levels. But lets forget about all the negativity and think about the positives; it's Freakin' 20-17! 

This year I have a lot of wants and goals that I want to accomplish. It's not just about shedding the pounds and saving for the future, it's more about building towards my future and making sure that I'm as successful as I possibly can be. I've come up with 7 of my biggest motivations for 2017 that I will push to accomplish this year. 

1: LOOSE THE FUPA!

image via pinterest.com

Yes I am starting with the cliche, but honey you gotta start somewhere. Over the last 2 years I've gained 25lbs... and over the last 4 almost 40lbs! Now I'm not saying I don't love how my body looks now compared to when I first moved to New York (Cause I LOVE actually ADORE my curves), but I know that I can look and feel better than I currently do. So what does this mean for me...No potatoes? No pork? No alcohol? Well lets not go that far! I work in fashion remember, so every once in a while I'm gonna need a glass or two of a nice Cabernet or whiskey to get me through my day...and who really can say no to bottomless mimosas at brunch? 

Loosing weight is 1 part gym and 1 part diet. So, I've started out the year making a conscious effort to eat balanced meals and watch my intake. Instead of going out for lunch and grabbing 2 chili dogs or better yet getting a heaping scoop of mashed potatoes with my chicken and veggies, I'm MEAL Prepping! So far, I'm sticking with less carbs and more protein and vegetable heavy meals. I do salmon, shrimp, or even spicy Italian sausage pared with peppers, broccoli and carrots. The good thing about these veggies, is they are naturally delicious with just a little bit of pepper and a very small amount of salt (Less salt means less bloating--keep that in mind).

 Work Out OR Pay Out: I'm taking my gym membership seriously. And that's saying a lot for someone whose been paying for one for the last 2 years but hasn't necessarily used it to my full potential. One way to keep me on track with the gym is a rewards system (yes, I'm saying I bribe myself). For everyday that I miss the gym I have to put $5 into savings. So on top of having to pay my monthly subscription, I'll be "loosing" out on more money that I can work with throughout the month. Say I miss a full 30 days in the gym, that's $150 I'm missing out on fun in the city. Yes, it's not necessarily a bad thing but having almost $200 out of my account each month just because I didn't work out is not acceptable.

2:TRAVEL MORE

2016, I definitely lit my travel bug fire. From Dubai to Paris to Greece and Amsterdam, I got to experience the world with my girlfriends. And I plan to continue my great adventures even more in 2017. The countries on my bucket list include South Africa, Morocco, Thailand, Portugal, Croatia, Canada, and Cuba. Let see which one's I get to this year!

3: WORK SMARTER NOT HARDER

I absolutely love my job but, 2016 I would have to say was the most challenging year of my career. I was given the opportunity to handle more responsibility and have a stronger voice within the company, but what I didn't realize is that with more responsibility and power comes more stress and time. One thing that I took from 2016 work wise is that I may be able to handle everything, but that doesn't mean that I should. This year as a leader, I want to take the opportunity to delegate more and stress less. I have an awesome team that is smart and growing, so I should take advantage of it. I'm not a one-woman show and the only way that I will continue to grow and achieve great things is to understand my weaknesses and develop a team that best supports the goals that we plan on achieving. 

4: GET THOSE CREATIVE JUICES FLOWING

I can honestly say that my creative light was a little dim last year. And this year, I want to rekindle my love for all things creative. From DIY crafts to starting my own business, it's really important that I move forward with my ideas and not let laziness and fear distract me. I absolutely love writing and I now I haven't been 100% dedicated to my craft. I have so much new content coming up this month for my blog I can't wait! I'm also redeveloping my portfolio site to reflect my new ventures and experiences.

5: BOSS-IN UP

 Yep I'm gonna be a boss this year! It's been a long time coming, but I'm finally ready to take the plunge into entrepreneurship. Since high school, I've had ideas of designing and creating my own brand and it's now time to make those childhood dreams a reality. My goal is to have something tangible and up and running by the start of the summer and I know I can make that a reality this year.

6: FINIANCING RESPONSIBLY

image via finovera.com

Yes I'm a shop-a-holic. My mother likes to remind me of this every single day of my life. So this year, I'm focused on my savings and establishing a financial goal that's bigger than what I've done in the past. I'm slowing down on unnecessary spending like buying a $20 salad for lunch or shopping on nakedwardrobe.com every time they post a weekend discount (they unfortunately get me all the time), and working towards the bigger and better. Because the less I spend on the things I definitely don't need, the more money I'll have for projects I'd really love to focus on for my future. 

7: ME, MYSELF, & FE

Last, but certainly not least, I plan on focusing more on me. I've always been an extremely selfless person, but that has not always been the best thing for me in a lot of areas in my life. I want to grow within my self not only to be happier but to truly know what I want and need to live an awesome life. The more I focus on me, the closer I'll be to reaching my goals!

So lets take 2017 by the reigns and make this year A-MAZ-BALLS!!! Just remember...

Breaking The Rules: White After Labor Day

Some rules are just meant to be broken... Especially if it's your first night out back in NYC after about 2 months of nonstop working and a little bit of play!

If you knew how long this outfit has actually been in my closet, you'd probably think I had some big extravagant plan for this set. But, there's always a time and a place for everything! I actually bought the tube top and wide-leg trousers over a year ago (YES I SAID A YEAR), but wanted to have the look altered to perfection. Right before my trip to Greece, I did just that.

I decided to wear this gorgeous set during my office end of NY Fashion Week party and I must say it was well worth the wait!

The awesome thing about this outfit is that the pieces although all the same shade of white, are all different textures. By mixing and matching different textures while still keeping a monochrome palette, I'm staying right on trend this season. I especially love this satin vest I bought from Naked Wardrobe.

Check out some similar options to get this look yourself.

TROUSERS | TOP | VEST (Actual)| SHOES

6 Days, 5 Adventures, 4 Friends, 3 Countries, 2 Dreams, and 1 Heck of A Time!

Being young wild and free is what should be expected in your 20’s, so when my girlfriend Sanga suggested we take an impromptu trip to Dubai I could not pass it up. As I’m suffering from jet lag on a 4am train back to NYC from DC, I thought it was only right that I give you an inside look at one of the best trips I’ve ever been on in my life. Here's a quick recap of my trip and of course my outfits.

 

DAY 1: Washington DC —> Amsterdam

I'm wearing a Naked Wardrobe 2 piece set with a Forever 21 bomber jacket and Nike Roches

I'm wearing a Naked Wardrobe 2 piece set with a Forever 21 bomber jacket and Nike Roches

Instead of doing a direct flight to Dubai, we decided to take long layovers to get a chance to explore 2 new cities we’ve never been to. The first being Amsterdam.

After a 20 minute train ride into the city center, we had breakfast at a pancake house where we ate authentic crepe style pancakes with mandarins, honey and powdered sugar. We then walked through the narrow streets and canals to the Anne Frank House. Even at 8am, the line to get into the museum was down the block, but we were lucky enough to find Anne’s actual front door before other tourists staked it out.

 

DAY 2: First Day in Dubai

After a 7.5 hour flight from Amsterdam, we arrived in Dubai at midnight but didn’t get out of the airport until close to 2am! For being such a large airport, going through customs was an absolute nightmare. It seemed as if there were thousands of people arriving at the same time and instead of having organized lines, it was a free for all. I would have taken a photo, but we heard and saw a tourist get yelled at by an airport security person dressed in the traditional dishdasha and agal for taking a picture of him. Which is an understandable reaction. I think being a westerner, we don’t really take into consideration that their garments that we may see in the media aren’t costumes but are actual staples in every day life. You wouldn’t take a picture of a New Yorker because they primarily only wear black right? Lets just say, I was not going to take a chance of photographing anything in the airport.

My girlfriends and I were lucky enough to already have connections in Dubai. We stayed with our friend Eddie who’s lived in Dubai for 2 years already. If it wasn’t for him, I think we would have been a bit all over the place when it came to choosing attractions, foods, and overall just fun amazing experiences on our trip. He for sure was the plug of a lifetime—LOVE YOU EDDIE!

 

Day 3: BRUNCH AT THE PALMS

Naked Wardrobe Head to Toe, Steve Madden heels

Knowing Eddie, we expected the turn up was going to be beyond real every day of our trip. So, it was not a surprise that our first official day would start off with the most extravagant brunch I’ve ever been to. The Saffron Brunch located at the Palms Atlantis did not disappoint. 4 hours of unlimited food and drink, plus great music made even my favorite brunch spots in NYC look like child’s play. My favorite food had to be the braised lamb (I literally think I went back for more 5 times, that’s how good it was). The alcohol choices were beyond as well. From a Jack Daniels station to an Absolute snow cone machine, there was nothing you couldn’t get if you didn’t want it. From brunch, there is a shuttle that takes you directly to Indulge, a club also at the palms. As most people where continuing their brunch turn up, the crew and I were winding down a little—the time difference is definitely a bit of a killer, but we were determined to push through. 

DINNER AND A VIEW

From Indulge, we took a pit stop for about an hour break and then headed to dinner at Reem Al Bawadi. The food and the sheesha (hookah) was great, but what made this place that more fantastic was the VIEW—I have to capitalize it because you just won’t ever understand how sublime it really was. As we ate and smoked on cushioned couches in perfect 70 degree weather with the Burj Khalifa directly behind us, I could only imagine how amazing our trip was going to be. And what took this dinner over the edge, was the $30 price tag. Yes, we spent probably a max of $30 each for dinner sitting directly next to the tallest building in the world.

Fun fact, we went to the top of the Burj on Day 5! It's definitely gorgeous up there. Just knowing how many thousands of people worked on this beautiful building really puts yourself into perspective. Even the model display was taller than me!

If you plan on going to the Burj, plan to go ALL THE WAY TO THE TOP! Yes it's a bit steep in price, but the view, the experience and freedom is well worth it. By going to "The Top," you get to go on an observation deck without the huge crowds, a longer visiting time, AND macaroons! And who can say no to macaroons and fresh cucumber drinks while literally standing at the top of the world?

 

DAY 3: In the Dunes

I have to say Day 3 was the best day of my entire trip. We took a trip to the desert and had the time of our lives. We got picked up from Eddie's in a 4x4 and traveled about 45 minutes into the desert. After making a "10 minute" pitstop, our driver let out a little air from our tires (I know it freaked me out to) and we started our wild adventure through the desert. This ride was absolutely exilherating. Even though half of the time I thought I was going to pass out and die, (especially when the car was driving completely on its side!) this ride was better than any rollercoaster I've ever been on. We ended with a picturesque view in the middle of the desert. AND I finally got to ride a camel! This is probably the one event I will never forget.

 

360°

Even though we were exhausted, we ended our third night at 360°. Located in the middle of the ocean, we relaxed, smoked hookah and enjoyed each others company. The view was so spectacular as we were between  the Wave and the Sail of Jumeirah.

I wore a fitted midi dress from H&M that had thumb cutouts and cognac Steve Madden heels. This dress was perfect for 360 as it was pretty windy.

DAY 4: Abu Dhabi

Day 5, we traveled to the capital city Abu Dhabi and visited the Grand Mosque. This marble place of worship was absolutely breathtaking.

DAY 5: Last Day in Dubai

Our last day in Dubai took us to the Gold Souks. My girlfriend had gone to Dubai a few weeks prior and told me she found great deals in the Souks. Although I decided against purchasing anything, I thought it was interesting getting too look somewhat into Dubai's past. 

DAY 6: Bonjour Paris

AAAAAAHHHHH!!! I finally made it to Paris! This has literally been one on my dream destinations since I could remember. Although we only had enough time to visit the Eiffel Tower, it was definitely worth while. 

Reflecting

Reflecting on this adventure that I was so blessed to take with 2 of my best friends and sisters, I can say that moments like these really put into perspective of what is important in life. I'm grateful I got to experience this with great people and really disconnect for a while. And as I'm now sitting at my desk, all I can think about is where I'm going next.