Wednesday, November 19, 2014

8 ways to practice gratitude all year round

Thanksgiving is in T-minus 6 days & 22 hours (not counting or anything..) and I know many of us use this time as a way to reflect on what we’re thankful for whether it be friends, family or even love. After next Thursday many of us will forget about the gratitude we were filled with on Thanksgiving Day and it’ll be the furthest thing from our minds.

But how can we use this feeling of gratitude that we currently feel during Thanksgiving and spread it throughout the year? How can we practice gratitude every single day?

Here are 8 ways that I think we can show gratitude and thankfulness year round!

1. Tell someone you know that they inspire you.

2. Have a gratitude jar.

3. Have a daily journal where you write one sentence a day about what you’re thankful for.

4. Practice genuinely saying thank you—not the robotic thank you that we all use every day at work, but that genuine from the bottom of your heart thank you.....with a smile.

5. Be thankful for experiences that you didn’t want to go through or things that you never wanted to happen that happened anyway. This is often times when we grow the most.

6. Be thankful for the lowest of low moments and the highest of highs (because without the low’s the high’s wouldn’t be as sweet).

7. Read inspirational books on gratitude. This is the trustiest way to surround yourself with positivity on a daily basis. The Alchemist anyone?

8. Every day you open your eyes, be thankful. Every day you get to open your eyes is a new chance at living life and living it fully. There is so much beauty that surrounds you, learn to appreciate it every single day.

Journey beautifully friends!
(photo | tumblr )

Monday, November 17, 2014

Top 5: Things To Bring To Thanksgiving Dinner

When someone special invites you to Thanksgiving dinner this year show your appreciation by bringing something with you! There's nothing worse than coming to a dinner empty handed--so put down the mac & cheese and pick up something a little different that everyone will be sure to remember. Here's my list of 5 things that will have you looking like the shining star at dinner!

1. Dessert
There can never be enough dessert options at dinner right? Pumpkin pie, apple pie, pecan pie...the list goes on and on. Try something new by picking up a dessert that's a little different from your local bakery or try making something a little unique. How about this delicious Jamaican Rum Cake? Sweet, light and has the perfect amount of fruit!

2. Fall Bouquet
Showing up with a fresh, beautiful fall bouquet for the host is always a plus. Sometimes there's just too much food and dessert and nothing say's happy Thanksgiving like a colorful arrangement of flowers. The host will love this!

3. Wine
If the host is anything like me then she will LOVE that you brought wine to dinner. Picking up a couple special bottles of wine for the event is a very nice touch. Pinot Noir & Sauvignon Blanc are really nice Thanksgiving classics and will please any wine connoisseur. 

4. Camera
This might seem like a weird thing to be on the list. But bringing your camera and capturing all the special moments of the evening and then printing hard copies (I love artifact uprising) and sending it to the host will be a very special gift that will be appreciated. Everyone wants the holiday's documented but often times we get too caught up in the festivities to really capture all the moments. You could even take some footage and add some music to the clip and upload the video to youtube so everyone can enjoy!

5. Candles
Go with something light and not overly seasonal. A scent that the host can light when dinner is over and it's time to unwind. Joe Malone is a great option!

No matter what you decide to bring, make it a thoughtful gift and enjoy your Thanksgiving dinner!


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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

My winter fashion wish list

Seasons Best: Check out my winter fashion wish list below! 

Asos Coat

Asos Scarf


Mango Coat

Mac Lipstick

Zara Sweater Left | Zara Sweater Right

Zara Boots

Zara Cape

Zara much? I am obsessed with their fall/winter looks--I'm into that whole monochrome trend right now! I love the simple yet chic looks--very winter appropriate.

Which item is your favorite? Let me know below! 


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Movie Review: Beyond the Lights

When I saw the preview of Beyond the Lights in theaters months ago, I knew I wanted to see it the second it came to theaters this fall. Luckily for me, a friend tapped me on the shoulder when she got an extra advanced screening ticket. I was super excited because finally Gina Prince-Bythewood was back with a beautiful love story--you might remember her from her other brilliant creations such as Love & Basketball and The Secret Life of Bees. 

This movie was amazing and special for many different reasons. I won't spoil too much but I will say if you adored Love & Basketball (as much as I did & still do) then this movie will definitly move you in more ways than one. The movie is super entertaining, has great whit and is most imporatly emotionally involving--you can't help but to root for both characters in the end.

Everyone should most definitly head out to their nearest theater this weekend and check out the film! Grab your girlfriend, boyfriend, mom and dad--whoever, and just go!! It's a must see!

Nate Parker  & Gugu Mbatha-Raw

(photo via | facebook)

Monday, November 10, 2014

Chicken Florentine

I am the ultimate pasta fan and this recipe gets a perfect ten out of ten! I absolutely loved how creamy and flavorful this dish was--not to mention that it's a huge crowd pleaser! This is a quick and easy week night meal to make for your family and friends.

Here's what you'll need:
1/2 pound of linguini
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 medium onion
1/2 cup of mushrooms
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup dry white wine (I used sauvignon blanc)
1/2 cup of chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon of chopped garlic 
1 tablespoon of dried parsley
1 teaspoon of paprika
1 package of frozen spinach + 1 tablespoon of butter
salt and pepper

 Seems like a lot of ingredients but the majority of these things you already have in your refrigerator/pantry! Let's get started!

Wash chicken then dry with paper towel. Grab your cutting board & cube chicken into bite size pieces. Season liberally with salt,  pepper and paprika. In a sauce pan, heat olive oil and begin to cook chicken breast. Cook chicken until nice and perfectly browned on each side. Once chicken is done, remove from pan and set aside.

Using the drippings in the pan, saute onions, mushrooms and garlic until translucent. Next, add wine and chicken stock increasing your heat to allow the mixture to come to a roaring bubble. Allow sauce to boil for about 5-8 minutes (reducing by half), then slowly add your heavy cream, constantly stirring mixture. Once you pour your heavy cream, immediately add your Parmesan cheese. Continue to stir and let mixture gently boil (at this point you can check for taste and add additional salt and pepper to your liking). Y

While sauce is thickening, defrost spinach in microwave and in a separate pan saute with a teaspoon of butter. Once warmed through, add spinach to sauce, mix and cover and let boil for another 5 minutes on medium low. Add chicken back into mixture and cover for an additional 2 minutes.

Cook pasta according to box instructions and serve with a healthy serving of chicken florentine sauce.

This is my take on chicken florentine! Have you ever tried something similar, if so how do you make it? Let me know below :)

p.s if you love pasta you'll love this recipe as well! 


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