via Amy L. Cummins

While I was in Mexico, I had nothing but time. Time to sleep in, time to lounge, time to sit back with a drink in hand and think about Life. And that’s exactly what I did. I thought.

I thought about heading home after vacation and falling right back into the daily grind. Cleaning, cooking, changing diapers, chasing dogs, and struggling to maintain some sense of peace as the chaos keeps building and building.

So I made a promise to myself upon my return that I would declutter. I would let go of all that baggage that was – IS – weighing me down, physically and spiritually. I will finally tackle the guest room that has also become my home office / storage for miscellaneous items. I will clean out my closet and toss anything that doesn’t fit my body or state of mind. I will organize the pantry. I will restart my daily journaling. I will set aside time to decompress. I will revive old friendships. I will rediscover love. And I will build my confidence up by tearing preconceived misconceptions and anxieties down.

Picking Peonies  via James Fitzgerald III

via Flickr

Because Life is too short to hold on to all that negative energy – in the end, that is exactly what holds you back. The fears, the insecurities, the excuses. They eat away at your better self and breed more fear, insecurity, and excuses. A vicious cycle. So why not stop it?

Instead of harping on the weight of the world, find ways to relieve it. Let go of that negative energy. Perhaps that means liberating yourself from a bad relationship. Or finally dropping that last 15 lbs. Or maybe it simply means cleaning out your garage. Start small if you must. Organize your spice rack, then move on to your bookshelves, then tackle your closet. Toss or donate anything that is too tight / too big / too short / too whatever and keep only those pieces that make you feel good, damn good, and wear them frequently. Perhaps then you will find the energy and gain the confidence to hit the gym. As your body grows stronger, so will your confidence, and perhaps then, and only then, will you find the strength to leave behind a toxic relationship. Keep the end goal in mind, and take as many steps as you need to get there.

 White Free People Dress

via Frank Vinyl

It only makes sense that the less negativity we hold on to, the less negative we will feel, right? So I created what I like to call the Declutter Checklist as a kind of big picture affirmation that I am responsible for my own happiness. It’s not your typical to-do, check off as you go kind of list, but a reminder to eliminate the negativity and chaos by creating and embracing positivity.


And finally, if you need a little more positive motivation, head on over to this lovely and newly discovered blog: Amy L. Cummins. Or, if you prefer to just sit and contemplate Life, you may want to have this little treat in hand while you do so.

Happy Friday!



YOU ARE A BADASS (or so I keep telling myself)

Maintaining My Sense of Self (and sanity)…

I must admit, motherhood is most definitely an all-consuming job and lately, I have been struggling with maintaining a sense of self in the process. I love my little bean so completely that I have found myself putting me on the back burner. Yep, there are times I forget to brush my teeth, to eat, and makeup…well, that has simply become an extravagance!

So, as mentioned in my previous post and to reinforce my sanity, one of my top goals for the New Year is to concentrate on myself outside of motherhood. Or rather, to not lose myself within this new role of motherhood. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE being a mother. I love watching my little bean explore the world, one finger at a time. I love providing comfort and snuggles. I love his wide, curious eyes and his sideways smile. But I have to remind myself that in order for me to be the best possible role model for him, I need to take care of myself.

You musn't be afraid to sparkle.

I typically curate my inspirations via Pinterest and then quickly forget all about them, but this year, I plan to hold myself a little more accountable by sharing my style inspirations with all of you and actually taking action…

banana republic loafers | late afternoon

…like purchasing these leopard loafers from Banana Republic (that no longer seem to be available…argh!). Although, I love the whole outfit – the distressed boyfriend jeans, the striped sweater, the chunky bracelets…very casual chic!

scarf + hat + red lipsOr buying and wearing more hats because 1) I seem to have a permanent bad hair day lately, and 2) a hat can truly pull together any look (paired with red lips and a chunky scarf and you’ve got yourself a complete ensemble!).

Triangle Symétrie BraceletAnd wearing more simple, quality jewelry like this piece.

These are all tangible, purchasable things, of course, but beyond that, they inspire me to really develop and refine my personal flair. More importantly, it inspires me to be more confident and comfortable with myself.

A couple more ways I hope to pamper myself:

Silver + neonGet more manicures….

image…learn a few tricks to get me out of this bad hair funk. The key is quick and easy!

Victoria's Secret Model's Full-Body Workout..…and (gulp) workout! Even if for a few minutes at home. This workout is a great place to start. I’ve done it a few times already and I can actually feel my muscles working.

For all you moms out there, what do you do to maintain a sense of self (and sanity)? And how do you pamper yourself?

Bring It On…

imageHappy New Year! Is it really 2014 already? I’m so excited for what this year will bring. With a new accessory on my arm – my handsome little man – I am already flying high.

I have no doubt this year will be a thrilling one!

Looking back on 2013, however, I realize that I was a bit lost. I was somewhere between motherhood and wanting so badly to hold on to my autonomy. I wanted everything and nothing at the same time – I wanted to become the best mother possible, I wanted to be that perfect homemaker (there’s that word again; perfect), but I also wanted to let loose, have fun, feel young again, and somehow rediscover my life’s purpose. I suppose I was afraid of losing myself and couldn’t grasp the fact that I could have all of these things and more (aside from perfection). I wasn’t unhappy, but I think this confusion caused quite a bit of strife within my mind.

Are there others out there who have felt this way?


But this year, it is my resolution to let go of those petty annoyances, enjoy the small things, and to revel in motherhood. And instead of floating in a limbo of worries and insecurities, I hope to adjust my purpose and rediscover myself – a happier and more positive self. Because truly, what isn’t there to be happy about?!

Munchkin Face

Seriously, how does one NOT smile at that face?! Makes my heart melt.

Yes, this is the year of good thoughts and passionate living. It will be a year full of little giggles, sparkling eyes, and bubbly toes. But I also hope to concentrate on myself outside of motherhood; refine my style, rediscover my creativity, live a healthier lifestyle, and fall in love with myself again.

I mean, what’s not to love…?

A “few” more resolutions I have:

  • Stop waiting and start living – take more risks and go outside my comfort zone.
  • Don’t dwell on the past.
  • Have more fun! Put aside to-do lists and instead, concentrate on what makes me happy.
  • Laugh more. Don’t take life so seriously.
  • Be more patient, loving, and affectionate.
  • Put heart into everything I do.
  • Be the best mom that I can be. Have fun, treasure every moment with my little guy, and let him experience the world and grow at his own pace.
  • Do something creative every day.
  • Paint a picture.
  • Take a photography class.
  • Join a mom’s group.
  • Find studio space.
  • Run at least 2 races
  • Start yoga.

Tell me, how do you plan to love yourself more this year?

I am so ready 2014. Bring it on!


For a little extra motivation, you can purchase this print here.


Can you believe Christmas is only 6 days away?! December seems to have flown by and Christmas will be here and over before you know it.

This is also about the time I realize that the New Year is right around the corner – 2013! – and resolutions are already piling high in my head…

A clock striking midnight, and confetti, for New Year's Eve.

I think for many of us, 2012 has been a year of heartache and tragedy; personally for some, and nationally for most. Indeed, this is a time for reflection. And while I’m sure many of you have found yourselves asking why? how? and perhaps even questioning the virtue of humanity, it is also a time to ask yourself what? What can you do to make life just a little sweeter, for yourself and for those around you? What can you do to seize each and every day? What can you do to live life to the very fullest?

For me, 2013 is The Year to Pay it Forward, and I think it should be for all of us. If we each took a moment out of our very busy and oh-so-important lives to acknowledge and appreciate those around us; a simple smile, a helping hand, or a friendly nod of the head…it’s truly amazing how far camaraderie can carry us, and perhaps save a life in the process.

Because camaraderie is so much more than a simple gesture. It is a feeling of solidarity, of being present and recognizing yourself in those around you. It is about having patience, providing encouragement, and holding your head high and your back straight for those in need of a strong foundation.

So Pay it Forward my friends, by being true to yourself and those around you…

My 13 Resolutions for 2013:

  1. Wake up every morning appreciating the new day, no matter what that day may hold.
  2. Take a deep breath and have a little more patience.
  3. No wallowing! Life is too short to waste on misery.
  4. DO what you SAY.
  5. Stop feeling guilty. Stop making excuses. Stop doubting yourself. Just DO it.
  6. And if you fail, dust yourself off, and try again.
  7. Smile. Even when you don’t want to.
  8. Be there. For friends, for family, for yourself. Never forget to reach out to those you love.
  9. If you need help, ask for it.
  10. Look people in the eye when speaking to them. It’s amazing what you will learn!
  11. Don’t be afraid to express yourself. Remember, “those who throw dirt only lose ground.”
  12. Never take for granted what you have NOW because it very well may not be there later.
  13. There is no day like today. Make the best of it.

Pinned Image

What are your resolutions and how do you plan on paying it forward?

I think one of the greatest joys of blogging is the community and camaraderie it provides. And this is the perfect time to join forces, offer support, and give encouragement to those that may need a little extra sustenance. This is the time to pay it forward, my friends!

If you have written an encouraging, heartfelt, or motivational post, please link up below! And if you have resolutions you would like to share, or ideas to “pay it forward,” feel free to link away. But PLEASE, be considerate and only link to uplifting posts. I think we are all in need of a little joy and inspiration.

These are the rules:

  • DO link to inspirational, positive posts.
  • DO NOT link to political or negative posts.
  • DO link to a relevant post. Now is not the time for a marketing ploy.
  • DO pay it forward: leave positive and encouraging comments for others.
  • Please link back.

I will include a couple of new links in my Sharing the Love post each Friday for the next few weeks. And yes, I will be monitoring links closely for inappropriate content!

Now let’s begin the camaraderie! (click on the frog below to add your link and view others)

Cast Party Wednesday