Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Tabletop Level Up with Boxed Gifts

Picture Credit Meghan Hess (Instagram)
I have found that one of the most easiest and impactful ways to increase the overall aesthetic of your tabletop decor is using the power of a boxed gift.

I was inspired to write the post after seeing another Instagram post in which this easy tabletop secret was used for a lunch launch by the event planners and organizers for Megan Hess, famed fashion illustrator.

And this doesn't just work for launches.

This works just as well for mom midday meetups while the kids are at school and you need some adult time.

This works just as well for a nonprofit committee meetup in which you want to give a simple thank you gift to your hard working committee members or board.

This works just as well for a few busy friends meeting up to celebrate life and you want to make them feel special for their loyalty and friendship.

And you don't have to have a Chanel budget to achieve the same aesthetic.

Here are some gift ideas to make this easy for you and I purposefully selected ones that had gorgeous packaging or comes in classy boxes so that all you have to do is place at each place setting or my most preferred way: put a bow or tie a ribbon around it!

No Ka' Oi Quilted Pouches Made in Italy (only $32+) 


NEST Gift Boxes Available from Votive to Large Candles

S'well Gold Calcutta Traveler


Fortnum Teas Are the Best in the World


Sugarfina Corona Bento Box

Marble Mortar and Pestle



Friday, September 14, 2018

Bringing on Fall with Lips to Envy



As a blogger I bump into many beauty brands but one lipstick I keep coming back to is Estee Lauder's lipstick envy.

It has the duality of being moisturizing while also long lasting considering I talk a lot as apart of my job as a curator and influencer.

I though y'all might like to know that you literally can't go wrong with this brand and the color above is my favorite for fall.

The color shown is called Stronger and is a matte sculpting lipstick in a perfect berry with a hint of brown.

My skin tone is a medium dark brown and I wear this color from work to an evening out because being in the creative space, it helps me to present myself as someone who is not boring and who brings a bit of fun to everything I do!

Ha!

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Mime Awards: Community Good and Performance Style

Commentating on the Mime Awards Red Carpet


One of my favorite things to do is to write about the many different ways in which people live their lives based on the projects and activities that are the most important to them.

Community and doing good being one of them.

I recently had the pleasure of being the red carpet fashion highlighter of the Mime Awards in Dallas, Texas which brought people from all over the United States to celebrate the best of this artistic form of dance.


Master Mime Host Earl D. Thomas

This was the 3rd Annual Mime Awards show and was hosted by Master Mime Earl D. Thomas. The program is the featured initiative of the Belinda Thomas Foundation with the aim to expose others on how mime can be a form of expression that enhances the community.

The mission of the Belinda Thomas Foundation is to educate, enlighten and empower the youth of DFW by teaching life skills and college readiness using the art of mime as a platform.

The awards show is the annual fundraiser that supports the I AM MIME Experience scholarship to graduating high school seniors in the DFW metroplex.

If you're not familiar with what Mime is, here's a snippet of a performance that I recorded that brought the audience to its feet: https://youtu.be/0qD13X0hELs

From the Mime performers to the gala attendees, the fashion was spirited and a real reflection of the heart and soul of the people gathered.

Here are my Best Dressed Selections (Performers and Non-Performers):

* all photos credit to J McClure Photography

BEST DRESSED: PERFORMERS 













BEST DRESSED: NON-PERFORMERS













I left the awards show with such a sense of hope that no matter what's going on in our world, especially those things outside of our control, missions like this nonprofit is always a grounding experience that creates a lifestyle filled with knowing there's always a new day.

I can't wait until next year!

And for more information on The Belinda Thomas Foundation, you and go HERE.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Handbag Chic to Uplevel Your Athleisure Game

The Whitney 


Most people who know me will assume hell has frozen over because I used the word Athleisure in this blog post.

For the record: I hate Athleisure.

Just sayin.

Buuuuut, it turns out that Athleisure doesn't only have to be women wearing see through, cheap leggings.

None other than Michael Kors has a new and gorgeous Fall handbag, the Whitney, that can uplevel your Athleisure look for Fall without resorting to nonstop leggings (available now for preorder; ships 9/2/18).

Here are a couple of looks inspired by the Whitney that is uncompromisingly chic, comfortable and dare I say a bit badass!?!?

You're welcome.





Knowing Your Depletion Point

I had a fantastic dinner meet up with a friend who is in their early 50s and we both were reminiscing about our past corporate lives that included much volunteering, serving on boards and being "on the scene".

Since this is one of my newer friends, I appreciated the similarities in telling our stories of mental exhaustion, long work days, keeping teams motivated and moving forward while somehow also striving to balance our relationships with family and friends and serving our communitues.

He was surprised to hear how much I used to do and he kept saying, "Que, how did you do it?"

My response: "Well, technically I didn't do it."

After seeing his puzzled look I explained how sure, it worked for a while because of my youth and sheer inner drive. But make no mistake, the warning signs of it all being too much started appearing: from hair loss to stomach ulcers to always being in a constant state of anxiety to worrying what people thought about me or whether I'd miss some major event that had the potential to change my life...and etc, etc, etc!

It was neverending.

And if you add to that the loss of both my parents in a very short period of time and other responsibilities, it is a wonder I was sane.

He then asked me how did I "come to the light"?

My response: "I reached my depletion point when I was on the highway leavinget my corporate job at midnight one night and I almost crashed my car from sheer exhaustion. After i kept falling aslerp at the wheel that night it took everything in me to will myself to the side of the road after hearing my tires repeatedly screeching from swerving at a high speed.

And you may wonder how exhausted was I?

So exhausted that I woke up at about 5am that next morning still in my seat belt in that car on the side of the highway and the car was still running (but was in park)."

I continued to tell my friend how I sat there in my car and cried.

I also told myself: no more.

I had reached my depletion point.

Making Life Changes
After that incident, it took me two and a half years but I slowly unraveled my commitments from my corporate job, my many volunteer assignments  (which was especially hard because I had been volunteering since I was 14 years old), board commitments, one sided relationships, and unhealthy activities.

I now know that for some people, like me, unraveling a life of expectations is one of the hardest things you'll ever do.

Ever.

You'll hurt some people due to their expectations not being met of who they think you should be and what they think you should do.

You'll cry.

You'll be in a steady state of confusion.

Your ego will suffer.

You'll feel like you're losing.

You won't know if your life has purpose anymore.

People will judge you as if you are just too weak to handle "success".

I could go on but you get the idea.

And these all may sound like the most horrible things you can imagine and no lie, at times it will as you're unraveling.

But let me warn you: People who aren't aware of when they're  getting to their depletion point do drugs (legal and illegal), commit suicide, do horrible things to others in anger, greed or in the name of self preservation and so many other awful things.

Remember, you alone are the designer of your life. Meaning, what you do, how you do it, when you do it and where you do it.

And I pray that you don't let your ego of what others think keep you from making the decisions and taking the actions you need to take to be okay.

Your highest self is waiting...