Yesterday I turned 33 years old. Celebrating my birthday has always meant the world to me. I’ve never taken lightly the privilege to grow another year older (or people celebrating me LOL). It’s a privilege many of us take for granted so I try to always remember growing older is a blessing. I always hear people refer to their 33rd birthday as their Jesus or Pippen year. However, I’m going to call this my “Soul” year. Yes, Soul as in after the popular Disney movie released last year. Let me explain in more detail.Read More
April 19th, 2018 at 12:02pm I gave birth to a beautiful chubby cheeked, 7 lbs and 12 oz. baby girl. She showed up with a head full of hair and a side eye that can still kill to this day. (LOL) She’s also my snuggle bug. We have been snuggling and hugging since she came into this world. I’m still not sure how 365 days have gone by already, but here we are on April 19th, 2019. Happy 1st birthday, Riley!Read More
September 27th, 1988 is the day and year a star was born.
OK, now that I got that out of the way I can be serious now hahaha.
Today is my 30th birthday and I couldn’t be more grateful or full of love. I’m grateful to have made it to see the age of 30. There are many who never did, or will, and for this I am forever thankful each year God allows me to grow a year older.
I decided to take a break from blogging earlier this year due to my pregnancy. It was an exhausting pregnancy and I struggled with staying awake the entire day let alone run a blog in the process. I’ve had plenty of time to plan and have some quality blog posts coming your way soon. From recipes to personal stories to DIY projects. They’re all coming soon.Read More
It’s officially the greatest season of the year! Break out the apple/pumpkin picking, crisp air, hoodies, hot chocolate, pumpkin flavored everything, beautiful colored trees, etc. I could go on and on for hours telling you everything wonderful about this perfect season.Read More
I didn’t realize Aaliyah and Sade share the same birthday until earlier this week. How I’ve never known this information before then I’m not sure, because Aaliyah and Sade, are two of my favorite artists. I’ve known for a while I wanted to share a throwback song for this Thursday’s blog post. Since their birthdays were less than a week ago it lined up perfectly for me to use one song from each of these ladies for timeless throwback music.
As a 90’s kid, Aaliyah was the definition of perfection so many girls like myself wanted to be. Her death is still one that hurts my heart all of these years later. Thankfully, as a musical artist, one thing that will remain forever is her music. On the other hand, I have always known who Sade was because my family listened to her music, but didn’t get into her music until I got older. I’ve heard the line “Sade makes music for grown folks” for many years, and it’s only since I have gotten older I understand what the adults meant. Sade makes music for people who are so deeply in love or have experienced deep love that it’s truly something a younger child wouldn’t grasp. In honor of their birthdays and throwback Thursday I will share my favorite song by each of these lovely ladies below.
P.S.- Apparently musical artists born on January 16th are drop dead GORGEOUS because…look at their faces!
Happy throwback Thursday, everyone! Enjoy the music and the rest of your evening.
Today is my Grandmother’s 70th birthday, and oh man, what a blessing she is to this family. Not only has she been blessed to see another day, but she’s here to see the start of a new decade.
If you know me, you know I am for sure a “grandma’s girl” and it’s a title I wear with pride. I have always been extremely close to my grandmother. We have an unexplainable bond that I thank God for every time I get the chance. I had the privilege of growing up either living in the same house or down the street from my Grandma, and for that I am thankful.
In conjunction with a post on the Humans of New York Facebook page (click here to read it) last month, and FLOTUS, Michelle Obama’s, Let Girls Learn initiative, I began to think of my Grandma and how much she has influenced me, but particularly my education. I don’t know if I ever told anyone before, but a huge part of getting my degree was for my Grandmother. Although I always knew I wanted to go to college and receive a degree in a subject I love; my love grew out of my love for my Grandma. When my Grandma got married and had children it was a much different time for women and the life options they were presented to chose from. I remember the first time my Grandma said if she was given the opportunity back then she would have gone to law school to become a lawyer. It never really hit me until I was in high school how privileged I was, as a young Black woman, to be able to go to college and pursue my own dreams. I still remember how proud she was of me at my college graduation, and how she was wiping tears away when I walking up to them after the ceremony to take pictures. In all of the hard work and personal pride I felt in receiving my degree, I was even more happy to have made my Grandmother proud. For me, walking across the stage was my personal way of saying I have listened to everything you have taught me in life and this is my way of saying thank you.
As my grandmother celebrates her 70th birthday, the beginning of a new decade, I want her to go into it knowing how loved she is and how thankful I am for God blessing her to see another year, and how much she has already taught me and continues to teach me about life. On her birthday I want to say a million thank yous and they still wouldn’t be enough.
Happy birthday Grandma/GG! We love you so much and pray you have a wonderful day. You make 70 look GOOD! 🙂
Yesterday was my 27th golden birthday. Not only have I been blessed to see another year, but I had such an amazing day of being spoiled by my husband and baby girl. I received a massage, brunch in bed, a family walk, alone time to blog, and a delicious shrimp scampi alfredo made by my chef-boyardee husband. Here’s a picture of my oh so yummy breakfast plate 🙂
In addition to all of this spoiling; my Mom sent me my annual beautiful birthday flowers, I shared food and laughter with my Montana friends on Saturday evening, many loved ones posted special pictures/messages on social media for me, and I received so many text messages, phone calls, face time calls, and social media birthday wishes filled with nothing but love and happiness. Receiving love for my birthday on these platforms isn’t anything new, but as each year passes I learn to appreciate and be so thankful for those of you who take the time out of your day to send so much love my way. We grow up to learn exactly how precious time is in our lives, and for people to chose to spend their time on me means the world.
Twenty-six was a beautiful year filled with more ups than downs, and I can only imagine what golden year twenty-seven has in store for me. In the mean time, I pray and speak into existence this year brings blessings, grace, joy, love, prosperity, and wisdom. Not only for me, but for my loved ones as well.
Thank you again for all of the birthday love. You are all amazing and I love you all!
Happy best month of the year, everyone! Why is it the greatest month of the year you ask? Well, because it’s the month I was brought into this big and crazy world :-). Despite me being born in September (and many of my friends), there is so much I love, and look forward to about this month. My favorite season (Fall) is slowly approaching, which means so many great things are to come.
September has to be a pretty big deal, when one of the greatest bands of all time, decided to make an entire song named “September”. It is still a bucket list goal of mine to see these guys perform live before they retire for good. “September” is only one of the many Earth, Wind & Fire songs I love. You could play “Reasons”, “After The Love Has Gone”, or “Fantasy” and I’m going to sing at the top of my lungs like I’m a long-lost group member.
Whatever reasons you may have for enjoying the month of September, add a little more happiness to your month, and start it off the right way by getting a good dance in to this song. For added giggles, I’m posting the original video from Vevo below. Take a look at those graphics and outfits hahaha. We’ve for sure come a long way in the technology era. However, depending on the outfit, I wouldn’t mind going back to the 70’s fashion era.
Happy and joyous September to all of you!
As I’m sure most of you have noticed, I disappeared from the blogging world within the last month. No need to worry, I took a break to enjoy some much-needed vacation time back home in Illinois with my family and friends. I promise I will try not to take such a long break again, because I’m sure you all missed me as much as I missed you, right? Right!
We decided to take the train home because driving 20+ hours in a car with an almost one year old was asking for trouble, just as taking two, two-hour flights was out of the question. The train takes a LONG 27 hours to get from Montana to Chicago, but it was seriously PERFECT. Jordyn was able to walk around, make friends with the passengers and gaze out of the window in amazement of everything passing by us. As a new Mom of a newly walking/mobile baby, I highly recommend this way of travel if it’s an option for you. My husband and I are very happy we made this decision.
We mainly went back home to celebrate Miss Jordyn’s 1st birthday with family and friends. On her actual 1st birthday, June 18th, 2015, we took her first trip to Medieval Times with family and extended family. The show was great, (although our knight kept losing) the food was yummy, and our waiter was awesome. Jordyn even received a rose directly from our knight during the show. It was adorable, and he was such a gentleman for giving it to her considering all of the other people in there screaming for the rose themselves. We took this awesome picture before we were seated, and Jordyn’s Godfather, Jesiah, bought us the keep sake picture to bring home with us. I’m in the process of finding the perfect frame for it to hang it up in the house. It sums up our family perfectly! LOL.
We were also lucky enough to have been home when the Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup Championship game at the United Center, which means, we got to go to the Blackhawks parade! My husband, my sisters and I all went together and it was such a great time. There are few things more electrifying than getting to celebrate a huge win like theirs with your favorite city (the best city) in the entire world. When the buses finally got to our section, I’m sure we all went temporarily deaf from the intense level of screaming we were surrounded by and engaged in. Being downtown Chicago for the parade even brought on some college nostalgia for myself. I spent so much of my college career walking those same downtown city blocks and riding those CTA trains and buses with loved ones. It made me that much more proud to not have just graduated from a college in a city as amazing as Chicago, but more thankful for even the tiniest of memories such as those in this awesome life of mine.
Jordyn’s birthday party was a huge success. It’s always wonderful to see so many faces you usually only get to see once a year or less. She received more blessings, love, and presents we could have ever imagined. When I tell you this is one extremely LOVED little girl, I mean it. Her party took place in one of the popular forest preserves on the north-side, and the weather held up perfectly during the actual hours of the party. It wasn’t too hot, and it didn’t rain until an hour after the party was over. The food was great, the company was even better, and the love from everyone was the best. My Aunt Gloria (who makes the absolute best cakes in the world – just ask the birthday party guests) made Jordyn’s Sesame Street themed cake and it was beyond perfect.
The day after Jordyn’s birthday party was not only Father’s Day/My husband’s first Father’s Day, but the 14th annual Ricky Byrdsong Race in Evanston, IL. This was the first year since Kris and I have been together that he was in town and able to attend. It has been a tradition in my family since my best friend’s (Kelley) Dad was killed back in 1999 to participate, support, and volunteer at the race. It only gets better each year. The YWCA Evanston/North Shore does a fantastic job each year with everything from the great t-shirt designs to the perfect entertainment. The race starts at 7:30 a.m. on the dot. Considering we all had a late night hanging out downtown Chicago at Dave and Busters the night before, the initial 6 a.m. alarm was a little rough, but everyone had a great time as we always do. I told them they’d enjoy themselves once we made it out there and they did! Kris, Jesiah, Andye, Jordyn, and I even walked the 5K. A.K.A. we walked and Jordyn slept the entire stroller ride.
We decided to do a few new activities while we were home this time around as well. We went to Xtreme Trampoline with my sisters and cousin one evening. We paid for two hours of jumping time because it seemed to be a reasonable amount of time and the pricing wasn’t too bad. However, we jumped for 45 minutes before we were all laid out on the side of the trampolines trying to catch our breath and regain energy to jump again LOL. If you’re ever looking for a great leg and cardio workout, find your nearest indoor trampoline place and I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
Kris and I even had a date night that was finally out of the box of dinner and/or a movie. Kris has wanted to do indoor skydiving for quite some time, and we so happened to pass the iFly Chicago – Rosemont complex on several occasions driving back and forth to/from my Mom’s house to/from Kris’ Mom’s house. A family friend also recommended it while we were home so we decided to try it out. Kris was surprised when I told him I wanted to do it as well, because when I say I am the least risk taking-est person you will ever meet…I’m NOT exaggerating. I don’t even ride roller-coasters because they scare the crap out of me to give a little perspective on how big of a chicken I am, or as I like to say, I just appreciate my feet touching the ground. Well, let me tell you, I had SO much fun and would recommend for everyone to give it a try at least once!
My second favorite part of going home is the endless options for unbelievably delicious FOOD! I miss having so many of these food places around me 24/7. I’m pretty sure I cried about it at least twice while I was pregnant last year and unable to eat the food I was craving. Whatever – don’t judge me. Anyway, I have way too many food places to name to even begin to give you a glimpse of how much I eat when I am home. However, I do have very specific places I absolutely MUST get while I am home: Giordanos, (it makes me sad how many people will never have great quality pizza in their lifetime) Claires Korner, (because Jamaican food – DUH) Buffalo Joes, (single order and cheddar chips are no where near as good anywhere else) Portillos (Italian beef dipped with hot and sweet peppers, a cheese fry, and strawberry shake – you’re welcome). The other chain food honorable mentions are: Chipotle, Dunkin Donuts, and Potbelly. I was way too excited to devour my food when I received it from any of these locations, but here goes a glimpse for you.
In all the fun and amazing things we did while we were home, my favorite part of going home is always being able to see and spend time with my family. From BBQs at Uncle Tony’s house, playing UNO in my Mom’s dining room, to having brunch after church, these are the memories I will hold onto more than others. I want Jordyn and her future siblings to grow up knowing and loving our family and extended family as much as I do. As I’ve stated in previous blog posts, I come from a very large family. Not only are we large, but we’re a close family as well. Which makes it that much harder to live so far away from them. When I say family, I mean my closest friends as well. Most of my friends have become my family in the last few years and I couldn’t be more thankful to be surrounded by so many awesome people I’m related to by blood and by choice. Many people go through life without either of those options and here I am with more than I can keep up with. I often tell people, I know without a doubt there is a God, because it is not by chance I am living this life. It is not by chance my little family has so many people we can turn to and support us in our times of need. It is not by chance when a new milestone takes place in my life or theirs, we become that much closer to one another. And it wasn’t by chance I was born into the world’s most beautiful, greatest, loving, supportive, strong-willed, and FUN family!
As always you were good to us Illinois. We’ll be back for a brief round two in mid September. Have a happy and blessed Sunday lovely people!
As I had stated in my second to last blog post, we took a trip to Utah last week, and we had such an amazing time. We really enjoyed catching up with friends, and taking our first road trip as a family. We did some sightseeing and plenty of eating while we were there. It is a potential base for our family to end up as well, so we really appreciated the fact that we liked the area. Jordyn and I even found a little splash park on base while exploring the base while Kris worked one afternoon. She LOVES water so she had a great time :-).
I thoroughly enjoyed the large and up close mountainous view, as well as, the cleanliness and simplicity of downtown Salt Lake City. The people were nice, there was plenty to do, and we did as much as we could. Ed Sheeran was there in concert one of the nights we were in town, and I was so sad I hadn’t known that information prior to going. I would have for sure tried to get tickets, because I love Ed. However, I spent the evening with friends, shopping, and surrounded by beautiful imagery. This is what the mountains looked like outside of our hotel room on base.
Kris LOVES aquariums, so for his actual birthday, we went to the local aquarium. We had a really great time and the aquarium is so beautiful. Jordyn enjoyed putting her hands on the glass trying to get the not so little “fishies” attention too lol. We’re definitely going to have a little swimmer of some sort on our hands.
My friend, Rebecca and I, had been trying the entire week to make it to the zoo, but the rainy weather had other plans for us and the girls. It is for sure on our list of “things to do” when we go back to visit the Jones’ again. We had such a great time with the Jones’, Rebecca’s family, and getting a break from everyday life in Montana. We can’t wait to go back and see everyone again.
Until next time, Utah. Thanks for the great memories! <3