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Tyshia Ingram

Life

The Power of Your Story & I Started a Podcast

Sharing Your Story

Your story is the affirmation that someone, somewhere is searching for. ~ Tyshia Shante

So check it, I started a podcast real quick. Okay, so that’s my really lowkey way of controlling the excitement, anxiety, and stomach knots that are occurring as I write this. Y’all. I started a podcast.

If you’ve been following along, you know that my word for 2018 is Create. And one of the things that I have wanted to create for so long is a podcast. As much as I personally love writing, I understand the value in having another medium for me share my story and I welcome another way to connect with women in the journey beyond this blog. A podcast has always felt like it would be the perfect medium for me to do so.

It’s real, raw, barely edited, a bit all over the place. Everything that the perfectionist in me is screaming against. But it’s here and it’s out there which is all that matters.

In this first episode I’m talking about the power of your story. I discuss:

  • Why I’m adamant on sharing mine
  • The importance of black women sharing our narratives out loud
  • How sharing can open up endless possibilities for ourselves and others
  • And the one thing I know for sure about my purpose

There are so many wonderful women whose words have been some sort of validation or confirmation for me. This blog, my newsletter, and now this podcast are just a few ways I’m saying thanks and hopefully paying it forward. Take a listen and if it resonates, please pass it along and subscribe. ~xoxo

SHOW NOTES

Sharing Your Story


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey. Get my super simple Project Planner templates which helped me to launch this podcast when you sign up.



Life

The Hardest Part of Homeschool

Hardest part of Homeschool

Oh homeschool. Can I be honest here amongst friends and sisters? You know, in the spirit of transparency and sharing the mess in between cute Instagram photos and stories of grandeur? While I love the idea, rationale, and even the necessity of homeschool (especially when it comes to raising free black children), I feel very uncertain that I’m cut out for such a task…and maybe even more uncertain that I’m up for the job.

You see, it’s not the homeschooling part that alludes me. It’s the deschooling or unschooling that I find myself having to do when it comes to MY OWN way of thinking that has me feeling so unbalanced and unprepared. It seems as if every other day, I find myself examining traditional “truths” regarding education and learning (among other things) that I’ve held for so long. The hardest part of homeschool is seeing those things through a new lens which is at best unnerving, at worst defeating.

Do you know how unsettling it feels to lead your children’s learning when you feel you have so much unlearning and relearning to do yourself?

Hardest Part of Homeschool Tweet

The more I pay attention, the more I see so many ways that traditional school is failing us (and our black children) and that terrifies me. Mainly because there are so many too many children who will never get a chance. And partly because, I’m still trying to decide if homeschooling is something we want (or can) pursue long term–which is a different story for a different day.

We’re still finding our way with our youngest, still allowing him the space to explore and it’s been a beautiful process to be a part of. He’s brilliant and creative and most importantly, free. If only it could remain as carefree and simple as it feels most days with a 5 year old. Learning side by side, hand in hand with him doesn’t feel so daunting.

But those heavy feelings find me with my third grader who has now solidly voiced his preference to homeschool next year and me agreeing with each and every reason he has to feel to this way. Not to mention the laundry list of reasons I have myself. And they get comfortable when experiencing a particularly tough seventh grade year for my oldest in an evaluation heavy (and disgustingly failing) system.

Just when I thought I had it all figured out.

Essentially, I still have lots of learning to do and that’s the hardest part of homeschool. The overwhelming part. The part that leaves me feeling like, somebody may be more equipped for the job. But with my options looking slim in the realms of traditional education…most days I’m left feeling like there is no right or easy choice. And yet, it’s still one that will have to be made.

My hope is to find balance in the next few months. In communities here in my city, in possible co-ops to share the learning (and unlearning), in personal growth and discovery. In the meantime, I’ll continue to share the cute photos of black boys with books and figuring out the hardest part of homeschool with you. ~xoxo


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life Words

You

You
In life we’re told,
you can’t be too many things.
That, you have to choose.
This or that.
One thing or the other.

We’re given restrictions.
And limitations.
Forced into boxes.
Begged to fit inside neatly.
So that we make sense.
So that we’re understood.

Because messy things can’t fit into boxes,
so we’re told you can’t be both.
Or many.

But those are lies.

Who you are, is not mutually exclusive.
Your being, your thoughts, your mind,
your body, your spirit, your soul.
You.

You can be.
You can be both.
You can be all.
You can be…
You.

Life

A Few Things…

My Truths
Over creative coffee cup conversations with friends about blogging I learned that: sometimes, people just come for the pics and the short pieces of clear inspiration they can take with them along the way. So essentially, a nice way of saying that not everything, all the time, everywhere has to be so deep. We’re talking about me though (rolls eyes). I’m certain there’s an infinite universe of deep inside me. But, I agree and I’ve said before that I wanted to work on balance. Here and in other areas of my life. So, in the spirit of keeping it light (and still transparent) here are 15 completely random truths so you can get to know me…sans life epiphany :).

  1. I wholeheartedly believe leggings are pants. Don’t debate me.
  2. I wear headwraps, sometimes because they’re cute, mostly because my hair is a mess.
  3. Sometimes I eat chicken because chick-fil-a (fake ass vegan).
  4. I am a faux wino, sometimes I buy cheap wine…*whispers and I like it.
  5. I believe “athleisure” (that’s what y’all calling cute leggings and sweatshirts right?) is the greatest creation of our lifetime. See number 1.
  6. I could eat Chipotle everyday (and sometimes I do).
  7. I think Starbucks is gross, but sometimes I buy it for “aesthetic” purposes #bloggerlife.
  8. On days I wear non-prescription glasses it’s because I’m too lazy to wear concealer.
  9. And sometimes I don’t take off my makeup at night.
  10. I’ll love Uggs forever. Basic.
  11. Sometimes I only eat once a day, not because I’m not hungry…because I forget.
  12. I buy overpriced Uncrustables ($10 for PBJ sandwiches though?) because Jr. loves them, hates crust, and sanity.
  13. Instagram stories makes me uncomfortable (if you see me doing them, know inside I’m crying) but I like watching them.
  14. While I love it, I haven’t yet reached the point of liking my natural hair. She wild.
  15. I have this deep seated desire to save the world but I haven’t yet figured out how to save myself. Issa struggle.

~xoxo


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey. Get my FREE Project Planner when you sign up. 



Life

Always Enough

Always Enough
Full disclosure, this is yet another post about abundance but, I hope you’ll bear with me as I’m trying to move from it being an abstract concept to something I can tangibly explain and hopefully, help you become more aware of its presence in your life. Remember, I’m learning as I grow and growing while I learn. My only goal is to share those lessons along the way with you.

So, can I be honest? Sometimes, I talk really big. Whether in conversations with friends, blog posts here in this space, or even in more sacred places like my journals or quiet meditation sessions. I talk about fear and pushing through it, about taking leaps and keeping faith, about setting intentions and anticipating their manifest. And in my heart of hearts, I’d love to tell you that I practice what I preach without doubt or worry 100% of the time, but that wouldn’t be transparent. That wouldn’t be real. And it certainly wouldn’t be me.

The truth of the matter is, although I speak these affirmations and I believe them to be true, I struggle sometimes in the midst of the work. When the comfortable things are falling apart so that the better things can come together. When I’m questioning my thoughts, my abilities, myself. When it feels like, maybe just maybe, I’m wrong. I struggle with believing the things that I know to be true.

During the latter part of last year, as you’re probably aware, I was dealing with something I couldn’t quite explain, even though I tried many times. Now, in retrospect I see it was a particularly frustrating blend of burnout, dishonesty (with myself), anxiety, and possibly even some depression. There were weeks where I literally couldn’t show up.

“I’m not sure how to fix it, but I recognize it’s there. I feel like I need to make a major change. I can feel it in the pit of my stomach and thoughts about what exactly that change may be have been running wild in my mind.” ~ Feelings

When I became still and quiet with myself, I always received the same message. That it was time to let go of the things that not only weren’t serving me, but were slowly draining me as well.

This terrified me. Because all at once, or more likely in tiny bits that I only processed all at once, every last one of those things–the ones that were draining and not supporting my purpose, were illuminated. And, as I wrote in The Thing You Should Know about Intentions:

Always Enough

I was terrified to let go. I was scared I wouldn’t have enough. That I wouldn’t be able to sustain myself. That I wasn’t capable of more than what I already achieved or had. And looking back, or thinking about it now because the are still very fresh/fluid feeling, I recognize how limiting that mindset is.

At the end of last year, I started to make space in my freelance creative work. I got real with myself. About the things that I want to achieve, the reason I’m doing all of this in the first place, the space that I need to survive/thrive, and the type of work I want to do both professionally and personally. I had to let go of some things in order to make room for those truths to arrive.

And in the process, which is occurring pretty much in real time as I write this, I’ve been affirming my actions and feelings with the mantra: Always enough. It’s what I keep telling myself. Every day. Always enough. Always enough time, space, creativity, love, words, room, money, energy.

And friends, it’s really been enough. Always.

I know that I’m not always the most straightforward and sometimes my posts ramble for days but in the spirit of clarity, let me make this one plain: THERE IS ALWAYS ENOUGH. ~xoxo


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life

Things I Want to Do in 2018

Things I Want to Do

In Create La Vie, I shared my word and intention for 2018. If you read it, you know that it was pretty abstract and open. No goals or resolutions, just a word and what it meant to me: creating the life. And while a big part of that as a creative, lies heavily in creating things, it’s just as rooted in experiences and actions as well. So in the traditional new year spirit, I’m sharing a few things that I want to do this year.

* * *

I want to read. A lot. Books by black women authors, the legends and the new additions. Books on spirituality and ones on life. Books on creativity and fiction that feels like non-fiction. Memoirs and poetry. I want to read everything from The Divine Sophia to Parable of the Sower to Sing, Unburied Sing, to We’re Going to Need More Wine. And everything in between. I don’t have a number in mind. Remember “without expectation” is a big part of my vibe this year. I just want to read and learn and read some more.

I want to travel. Like really travel. With my family. I’ve always held this limiting belief in my mind that it’s too hard, expensive, and borderline impossible to travel as a family of five. And so, travel isn’t something that has been a part of our journey together. Discovering blogs like Raising Vagabonds and others has inspired me to change my mindset and give my children (and myself) the experience of travel. We have a few destinations in mind but I’m open to where the wind (or flight deals) take us.

I want to start our own family traditions. Holiday ones like Kwanzaa and real Christmas. And others like movie nights and family dinners. Making costumes and summer beach trips. I’ll be honest and say that the older my children get, the faster the years seem to go by and I’m feeling the pull for meaningful traditions that will last as they grow.

I want to embrace the freedoms that I’ve worked for and have been afforded to me. More midday trips to the park. More random afternoons of play. More exploring and coffee shop working. More meeting up with like minded women, moms, writers, and entrepreneurs for lunch. When I made the decision to work for myself it was always about freedom. To work around my personal schedule, wherever I was, and make the income I needed. Ready to do just that.

I want to focus on holistic wellness. Mind, body, soul. Eat plant-based consistently and transition my family towards more of the same as well. Learn yoga and meditate daily. To fill my cup so that I’m able to pour into the ones I love the most.

If you haven’t shared your word or goals for 2018 yet, please let me know! I find it so inspiring reading all the words and intentions people are taking with them into the new year. ~xoxo


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life

Create La Vie

Create La Vie
Create. If there’s anything I know for sure about the direction I should take heading in the new year, it’s that I need to create. Every year, like many intentional folks/entrepreneurs/artists, I choose a word to serve as the focus, theme, or anchor of my year. For 2018, much earlier than I’ve done in the past, I’ve settled on a word that I think…I hope…I pray will take me to the places I’ve yet to see anywhere outside the comforts of my mind.

So why create?

Well, I’ve talked a lot about dreams here. In No Dreams Deferred I got real about my fears on not becoming the person I dream to be. In Do the Thing, I wrote about how as a dreamer I find myself stagnant, living lives in my mind instead of bringing those visions to life. In Crops I shared the truth that I’ve struggled with using my voice and gift for myself. The lack of creation, movement, and growth last year can be felt loud and clear throughout my blog posts, journal entries, and conversations over wine and coffee with friends.

There was no other word to choose for the year ahead except for Create.

And I understand that’s a broad term. Create what right? And isn’t the simple fact that I’ve been showing up here, writing, journaling, and even creating for work enough? In a way yes, but, these are all things that have been comfortable for me to create. In the spirit of growth and discovery, I want to get a little uncomfortable in order to create the life of my dreams.

And beyond that, I want to create without expectation. Without figuring how everything works together, without trying to connect the dots, without trying to see the end before the thing even gets started. I want to create without thinking about the how or what and create simply for the why.

I have a lot of ideas in my mind (and in notebooks strewn about) that I would love to see come to life. And I know the only way to manifest the things I want to see in this world is to create them. So that leads me to the big question: How am I going to do this?

For starters, I know that as much I want to throw all caution to the wind and dive in, it’s simply not how my brain works. But, I also know that if I’m not careful I can get stuck in planning mode without ever taking action to create. What I’m hoping to be a happy medium is listing the things I want to create this year, committing to a year of creating daily(ish), and using a simple planner to help guide me through it.

And of course, a huge part of the creating is the sharing so you’ll find the journey under the CreateLaVie tag here on the blog and #createlavie hashtag on Instagram.

Here’s to a year of creating the things in our hearts, manifesting our dreams, and living the lives we love. Create La Vie! ~ xoxo


Hey dreamers, I created a planner just for us that is simple enough to make sure we don’t get stuck in planning mode and straightforward enough to help push us through to the end of project. Sign up for my mailing list for the free download so you can create the things in 2018 with me!

Project Planner



Life

Reflections // 2017

2017 Reflections
Oh, 2017. If I can be completely honest here, with you friends, I’d have to say that 2017 was a very…cloudy year for me. As I sit here, ready but less than enthused to reflect back on the year behind me, my mind draws a blank. I, right now, can’t think of some monumental accomplishment or some major life change. Well, aside from turning 30, realizing I’ve been hiding from myself the past 29 years of my life, and uncovering a newfound spiritual path. So…I guess a monumental year after all?

In Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston wrote, “There are years that ask questions and years that answer.” 2017 was a year of questions. All the questions. All the time. And not an answer in sight…

Looking back, I guess I should have seen this coming. This feeling as I sit here a few days away from the new year, reflecting on all the twists and turns this past one has taken me on–seemingly to no particular destination. I started out fully intending for it to be a year of growth, somewhere along the way realizing that I hadn’t planted any real roots. Not in myself, my work, or where or who I even wanted to grow to be. I pivoted to focus on consistency, thinking that if I made it a point to constantly show up in whatever it is that I was doing, I could eventually achieve the growth I desired. Somewhere along the way dropping projects, changing my mind, becoming paralyzed by analysis (or fear whichever word works) and ultimately realizing I didn’t even know what I wanted to be consistent about.

A year of questions.

Part of me wants to look back through my journal over the year to gain some understanding. Hoping that an answer is hidden amongst journal entries or thoughts in my Notes app or in the pages of my work planner. But, a bigger part of me understands that the insight I’m searching for will only be revealed to me some years down the road. In a year that answers.

As solemn as this all may sound, I’m thankful for it all the same. 2017 was most definitely a discovery year and while I may not have welcomed the questions it brought with open arms, I’m grateful for them now and have learned to see the joy in their presence.

So here’s to 2018. Hopefully, a year that answers but if not, most importantly a year that I’m here to receive the questions at all. ~xoxo


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life

Abundance

Abundance
Some months ago I wrote a journal entry after meditating on the concept of abundance. A concept that I’ve struggled with for as long as I can remember. Sounds strange, but hear me out. I’ve not struggled with the idea of abundance itself. I embrace it, I yearn for it, I’m intrigued by it. But, I’ve struggle with believing that abundance is already mine. And this struggle has led me to chase so many things that don’t make sense, that I don’t believe in, that don’t align, feed or fuel me in order to obtain it.

But, how do you obtain something that is already yours?

If I’m to understand and believe that my very being is aligned with abundance, then the thing I need to do is follow those things that I’ve been called towards and am pulled to. My personal legend, as named in The Alchemist.

Why is that so scary then? The idea that, you can let go of the things that aren’t serving you, aren’t helping you grow, or aren’t bringing you joy? Why do we feel like, we have to do these things that are so opposite in order to receive the abundance…that we already have? Why do we feel there must be some pain, or sadness, or angst in order to have abundant life? How contradictory.


For me, I sometimes feel torn. Between the truth that my ancestors did not have such choices and the thought that, they fought for me to have such choices so why would I do anything less? It’s a constant battle in my mind trying to figure out if me deciding to wholeheartedly pursue my personal legend is in honor of them, or, a selfish disregard for their experiences.

Most of the time, I rest in the truth that I am here today. And the belief that abundance is mine. And the hope that I’m honoring even the slightest piece of my ancestors struggles by boldly living and walking the paths they laid out for me.

Anything less seems like a travesty.

I mean…that’s all I want for those that come after me. My children and their children and their children. To be able. Whatever that means for them. Not to be whatever this world tries to force them to be. I want only for them, to be able, in the highest sense of the word. And it’s that desire that catches in my throat, illuminating the uncertainties in the corners of my mind.

Will I be able to do it? Without pushing myself to fall in line and do the things that don’t align because they’re “safe”–er. Is this unconventional (to society) path something that will allow me lay a brighter path for them? Will I be able to leave them more than what’s left to me when it’s all said and done? Because isn’t that what we’re all just trying to do?

I have to believe the answer is yes. And I have to believe that the most important things, they have. I have to believe that abundance is theirs too. And maybe, believe the best thing I could do, is to help prevent them from ever feeling this struggle by laying the example. The one that encourages and inspires them to be able and to follow their gifts, curiosities, talents, passions with full confidence that is enough, they are taken care of, and abundance is provided.


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life Words

Flowers

Flowers
There are many women inside me.
A garden.
Rich with many flowers.
Each one in bloom.
Separate. But together they are whole.
Both beautiful and complex.

Wildflowers.
That grow with reckless abandon.
Taking root wherever they see fit.
In perfect spontaneity.
No intentions or expectations.
Just present for presence sake.

And roses.
Beautiful and delicate.
Armored, so it’s best not to get to close.
Brave ones proceed with caution.
Past the exterior is a softness.
Where you can enjoy them without boundaries.

Herbs.
For nurturing and dependance.
Here simply to serve.
To give the ones they love the things they need.
Without wanting anything in return…
except to be needed and loved.

And weeds.
Hiding in the shadows.
In the spaces that need tending.
Where I’m too nervous to go so I pretend…
Not to see.
But those are the parts that are most free.

The sacred lotus.
Birthed within deep waters.
Exasperatedly requiring a mess in order to grow.
Experiencing many lives.
A spiritual wonder in the midst.
At home in the thick of it all.

And seedlings.
Of flowers unknown.
Whose roots are planted.
And purpose yet to be revealed.
Waiting to flourish,
To join the others in the wild.


Most Sundays I share a letter from my journey with those on my mailing list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life

No Dreams Deferred

No Dreams Deferred
This past Sunday, my newsletter was about all the feels I had while watching the Humans of New York series. I’m telling you, for a girl who lives in her feelings, just one episode gave me enough to think about for a lifetime. And while I could make this post about every last one of them, I’ll focus and say that mostly…I thought about how we all have dreams. Shocking right? And you know, contrary to things I say on my blog in moments of deep introspective thought, I’ve always been a dreamer and I’ll always love a good dream. So of course the stories that made me think the most were the ones where people didn’t become who they wanted to be.

I think that’s probably one of my biggest fears. That I’ll never figure it out. That I’ll never “get myself there”, as one New Yorker so eloquently put it.

If I’m creating something, building something, then I’m alive. When I’m not creating something, I’m not alive.

How I want to be remembered is, as someone having achieved their dream. If I haven’t achieved my dream…I don’t deserve to be remembered.

Why do I give up? I lost my energy. I get tired. I get tired of the struggle. I’m not a fighter. That’s why I give up. You gotta be a fighter. You gotta go out there and pitch and sell. You gotta be on.”

~ Humans of New York: The Series Episode 2

I felt this dreamer the most. There was something so familiar in him. An actor who’d imagined he would have made himself a movie star by now. Directing films in Hollywood. Big dreams, us dreamers. And like him, I felt tired. You know, you do have to be fighter. And it can be exhausting. The struggle can be exhausting. But the truth he shared made me understand…I can’t give up. I guess I gotta get out there. And pitch. And sell. I gotta be on. Because like him, I feel alive when I’m creating. And I want to be remembered for me…the girl who chased her dreams…which if you’ve learned anything from me by now you know I believe that that’s quite literally the dream itself.


I’m working on something for us dreamers. If you’ve ever related to any of my posts about chasing dreams, manifesting, and all that good stuff, sign up for my mailing list. I share all the good stuff there first. ~ xoxo



Life

‘Tis the Season

'Tis the Season
Yesterday, I finally made my way into our garage to begin gathering the Christmas decorations. Last year was my absolute favorite tree. Like of all time. We don’t buy real trees around here (yet) and a couple years ago was the first time we got one that wasn’t a cheapie throwaway. This will be our third year using it and each time it keeps getting better. But last year, in particular, it was the best so far. I really wanted our tree to be simple but magical. I wanted it to have that real feel good Christmasy vibe. The boys were in charge of decorating it as usual and my only request was silver and gold with white lights. It was everything I imagined. This year, we’re building on that same theme and adding more holiday home decor things in the mix. You remember my Soulful Spaces post right? Well we’ve made some progress and I’m finding my footing so with the holidays here, I’m excited to see what we create.

Sorting through the decorations felt really good though and started to lift the funk from earlier this week. Ever since I wrote that post, I’ve been thinking about how to lift my spirit. Not just for the holidays, but for life. It’s obvious something is going on but I’m usually such a Christmas girl at heart so the fact that I just wasn’t feeling good has been weighing on me.

'Tis the Season

As I was going through everything, I came across this ornament that made me pause. This cross is probably the most expensive ornament I’ve ever bought. It’s heavy and brass and sits at the top most branch of our tree, right in the front. I got it last year but, I honestly had forgotten about it until that moment. And when I saw it, I immediately felt at peace.

I don’t know when or why I let my mind and body become consumed with all the things of the world. I still can’t tell you exactly what has been making me feel so uneasy but what I can say for sure is that, I definitely have been letting things that don’t matter get in the way of the things that do. This cross was the thing I needed to see to pull me out of the fog and to remember the reason. Peace, love, hope, joy, and all that good stuff. ‘Tis the season.


Every Sunday I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life

Feelings…

Feelings

Aptly titling this one feelings because I’ve said the word “feel” more times than normal for me. I’m sure you know by now I feel all the things all the time. And so to be fair, this is no different…just more. 

***

I truly was not ready for the holidays this year. If we take it back to October, I was the mom telling my kiddos that we were going to make Halloween costumes and it would be epic. We had plans. Lists and details and all those things. And yet, I found myself rushing down the aisles of Party City on Halloween (cringe) buying the last of a too small minion costume and an over priced lego one. I feel like we had barely finished up the last candy from the very brief walk around the neighborhood (that I basically had to drag myself out of bed to do) before Thanksgiving was here.

I had been toying with the idea of heading to the mountains for the weekend. Ditching the “traditional” thing that’s never really been tradition for me all. Growing up in a blended/broken(?) family means every year, you’re bound to end up somewhere for else for the holidays. I had visions of spending the weekend in a cabin by a fire with the husband, kids, food, and wine. Sounds magical right? But I just thought about it, tricking myself into thinking I had more time than I did. And once it became too late for that to be a reality, or at least, that’s what I told myself, I had settled on just having a small dinner at home. I’ve only cooked Thanksgiving dinner once before and really enjoyed it so it seemed like a good idea. Until there I was the Monday before with no menu, no groceries, and stressed with some work we’re doing on our kitchen. We wound up ditching that plan too.

Now, here I am feeling like Christmas will be here in the blink of an eye. By this time, I typically have up all the decorations, am playing Christmas music all day long, and making plans for the family to enjoy this month. We celebrate Kwanzaa too so the last couple weeks of December are always my favorite. And yet, here I am, feeling like I have been all season, so behind. Unprepared. Not ready.

I’m not sure where the magic has gone this season. I feel like this is just another page in this weird chapter of my life that I’ve been reading.

Maybe it’s perspective. Maybe it’s intentions. Maybe it’s a disconnect. Most likely it’s a combination of the three. Looking at life, my journey, and my present through a jaded lens. Having the wrong intentions behind my actions. And the huge disconnect between what I want and what I actually do. I feel like this has been a season with the recurring message of “doing the most and getting nothing done” or “doing the most and getting nowhere” or “doing the most of the wrong things”.

I’m not sure how to fix it, but I recognize it’s there. I feel like I need to make a major change. I can feel it in the pit of my stomach and thoughts about what exactly that change may be have been running wild in my mind.

I hope none of this sounds ungrateful. The truth of how blessed I am and God’s grace is not lost on me. There’s just something going on beneath the surface that has me feeling a bit lost and I’m praying I find my way soon. For now, I’ll look towards the season of magic and wonder in hopes it’ll light the way.


Every Sunday I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.



Life

Soulful Spaces: Home

Soul Spaces: Home
It’s funny how creativity works. It’s magical, of course, the way it can manifest in a person. How it shows up in many forms, unique to the individual. For some it’s visuals, others it’s words. And others still it’s art, music, or design. For some unicorns it shows up as all of the above. And for others, one area can can be full of beautiful creativity and another completely absent of it. The last one is me with writing and interior design. I can tell and create these stories that conjure up beautiful images…But translating that same creativity when it comes to actual beauty in my home is next to impossible.

Home. I’ve been thinking about that for awhile. Because our house doesn’t really feel like a home to me. It doesn’t tell our story. It’s not full of warmth. There aren’t any pieces of our lives, memories, or experiences. It doesn’t feel lived in. Doesn’t feel loved.

And for a homebody like me, where home is my sanctuary and sacred space…the disconnect is becoming harder to ignore.

In thinking about how to transform our house into the a home, I have to take a real intentional approach. Because this is not something that comes naturally to me, but it’s something that’s important. I used to approach design the way the professionals do. With labels. Which, if we’re being honest, makes no sense because I’m a person who despises labels. And so it never worked. I could never really see it. But, since I’m much better with words than I am with design, I figured I’d start there. Instead of what style I wanted our home to look like, I asked myself what words come to mind when I think about what I want our home to feel like?

I want our home to embody: Love, Warmth, Soul & Life.

The Colors | I see wood, earth tones against soft white walls. Leafy greens, earthy browns, burnt oranges, and subtle yellow. The occasional pop of color where least expected.

The Details | I see family photos with VSCO A5 vibes. I see plants and lots of them. Soft textures, textiles, and open space. And places for creating, learning, and living.

The Vibe | I see lots of natural light (I’m thankful) and pieces of our life. Travel memoirs and coffee table books for the culture.

That feels good to me. That’s what I want our home to feel like. And with that, I’m off to create our soulful space called home. Know of any designers or shops with home decor I might vibe with? Please let me know, if so. I’ll tell them you sent me. ~xoxo


Every Sunday I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me and things I think might resonate with you.



Beauty Style

In Current Rotation

In Current Rotation

I haven’t done a beauty post in awhile and it’s been forever and a day since I’ve written about style. I know I said before I was going to do more lifestyle posts mixed in with my big life epiphanies but, big life things kept on happening and so it goes. Still, it’s definitely something I want to do more of as I think about the direction of this blog and my plans for 2018. But before all that, I figured I’d ease back in with a few beauty and style things that are currently in rotation.

The Butter Depot

I have chronically dry skin and in the winter it only gets worse. I feel like I’ve tried everything under the sun to help keep my skin moisturized during these months and yet, I always wind up ashy and dry. Not a good look. When I discovered The Butter Depot through one of my clients I fell in love. The Citron Whipped Butter smells so good and it definitely can work for a masculine or feminine scent preference. At first touch, it’s really thick but as soon as it hits your skin it warms and melts in like butter. I’ve even used it on my hair when I needed something a bit thicker than my normal daily leave-in conditioner. And of course, I have to mention, it’s black woman owned which just makes me love it that much more.

Crochet Braids

Speaking of my hair…I cut it all off. I have a really well written, heartfelt post about my hair journey that I’ve yet to share but, the cliff notes version: I started growing locs, I changed my mind, I cut all my hair around my 30th birthday. Since then, it has grown long enough to do crochet braids. Now, let me be real when I say I love my liberating short cut as much as the wild and free spirit inside me does but sometimes a girl just wants to wave her hair back and forth. I’ve been eyeing this particular hair for months and it’s probably my favorite crochet braids style so far. And because we’re all friends here, it only cost me $20. Yes, $20. I think I’ll do a more in depth post about crochet braids, the kind of hair I use, and my technique because I always get asked a ton of questions. I don’t think people understand that honestly, truly, I do the absolute least. Knowledge is power and sharing is caring so that post soon come.

Sweater Weather

Even though I’m a summer baby at heart, I can’t deny that I love the fall. Pumpkin spice, the start of the holidays, sweaters, and boots will always have a special place in my heart. As part of embracing all of who I really am, I’ve been adding a a bunch of chunky sweaters in blush, gray, and black to my wardrobe. Real talk, I really don’t need anything but these three colors to wear. There’s the occasional wine, olive, or navy blue but blush, gray, and black have my heart. I know I have an aversion to pattens at times so one way I give my wardrobe some variation is with details darling. I love wearing a simple item, like a blush chunky sweater, that has some unexpected detail to it. This definitely has to be one of my favorite finds this season.

What beauty and style things do you currently have in rotation? I’m looking for cute boots, a natural wine and nude lipstick, and a satin lined beanie (preferably from a black owned company). Any suggestions? Let me know! ~xoxo


Every Sunday I share a letter from my journey with those on my email list. WELL SPENT is part things I’ve come across that inspire me, things I think might resonate with you, and a lesson from the journey.