14 WAYS TO CELEBRATE VALENTINE'S DAY AS A SINGLE GAL

 
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I’ve had my share of Valentine’s Day as a SINGLE gal and I actually don’t mind it. I love LOVE just as much as the next girl, but I also love my independence. And I’m not afraid to embrace being Single and making the most of it. So if you find yourself Single or dating with no commitment this year, this post is for you. Because Valentine’s Day isn’t just about being in love with someone. It can also be celebrated with all of the people around you that you love. Don’t let this Hallmark Holiday get you down in the dumps about being Single, use it as an excuse to treat yo’ self, gather with girlfriends or just have a day to celebrate YOU.


Photography by:  Lauren Lucile Creative

Photography by: Lauren Lucile Creative

1. Host a Galentine’s Night with your girlfriends. You can keep it low key with movies & wine. Or have a theme and go all out with decorations and specialty cocktails.

2. Go to a local wine tasting with friends.

3. Cozy up at home w/ a Sex & the City marathon. 

4. Get dressed up and go out with your girlfriends for a night out on the town.

Photography by:  Lauren Lucile Creative

Photography by: Lauren Lucile Creative

5. Spend the evening at home and treat yo self with your favorite bottle of wine, face mask & chocolate to indulge in. 

6. Gather your girlfriends to have a nice brunch at a local spot you all love. 

7. Have a spa day. Get a facial or mani + pedi. Self care is the best care. 

8. Have a coffee date with a friend at a fancy coffee shop.

9. Find a Singles event in your city to attend. Maybe Cupid will strike.

10. FaceTime a friend and have a virtual wine night while you catch up with one another.

Photography by:  Lauren Lucile Creative

Photography by: Lauren Lucile Creative

11. Find out what your Love Language is. Take the quiz here.

12. Take a bubble bath at home and apply your most elaborate skincare routine. And pop a bottle of bubbly.

13. Show yourself some love. Buy some pretty flowers & your favorite chocolates.

14. Grab takeout from your favorite restaurant, open a bottle of wine & watch all the Rom Coms on Netflix from the comfort of your home in your pajamas.

Photography by:  Lauren Lucile Creative

Photography by: Lauren Lucile Creative

Celebrate in any way that makes you happy. Love comes in many forms. And the most important relationship in life, is the one that you have with yourself.

How will YOU be celebrating Valentine’s Day this year?!


XO, Rae

GEORGIA ON MY MIND

 

HAPPY SUNDAY, Y'all!

I admit, I have not been watching much football this season. Typically, I catch most of the games, but for whatever reason, it just hasn't happened. I've only seen a few games here and there. But I feel like today TOTALLY made up for it. I watched the ATLANTA FALCONS game and witnessed them not only score a WIN, but a ticket to the Super Bowl!! And I could not be more excited for my old hometown.

As most of you know, I lived in Atlanta for 11 years prior to moving to New York City. I have lived in a lot of places in my short thirty-four years, but nothing felt more like home than Georgia. I owe a lot of who I am to the years spent there. I became an adult. I fell in love, real love, for the first time and also experienced heartbreak. I had a successful career which taught me that I was capable of much more than I ever thought possible. And now, that experience has lead me to starting my own business. I found life long friendships with some of my closest girlfriends, in which I credit Atlanta for having us cross paths.

Friendships that have endured the highs and lows of life, marriages, babies and moving out of state. I also, welcomed my thirties with a new lease on life after throwing out my life timeline in effort to live more in the moment. But what I most cherish from my time living in Atlanta, is meeting my best friend, Will. We have been friends for over twelve years now and currently live together in the city. So, I guess I kinda get to have a piece of ATL with me everyday in NYC.

Atlanta was 'home' in so many ways and although I love living in New York City, there are things that I miss about the South. Football Sunday's, Sweetwater beer, Waffle House after a night out, sweet tea and southern hospitality. I have no doubt that one day I will move back for good, but until then, Georgia is always on my mind.

 

XO, Rae

 
 

YEAR 2 OF LIVING IN NEW YORK CITY

 
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On October 10th, 2014 at 3 A.M., I crossed over the George Washington Bridge and into Manhattan. Moving to New York was never something I saw myself doing, but when life brings you opportunities, sometimes you have to take it and RUN! It's hard to even believe that it's been 2 years already. I still feel like I just moved here but also strangely feel like I've been here forever. That's the thing about New York, once you live here you instantly become attached. My first year living in New York was one to remember. It was full of amazing experiences and growth. And year two has been just as memorable. Here are some of my favorite memories over the past year. 

 

STANDING ATOP THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING

Seeing all of New York City from 86 floors up above, gives you all the feels. It also, gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “Empire State of Mind”. It reminded me how lucky I am to be able to call this concrete jungle, home. 

SUNDAY FUNDAY IN BROOKLYN

This Summer, my brother visited NYC for the very first time. I was excited to get to show him around the city. But I also wanted to show him life outside of Manhattan. And Brooklyn is the next best borough. We first walked across the Brooklyn Bridge, then grabbed pizza at Grimaldi's (best pizza in Brooklyn) and finished the day drinking beers at the Brooklyn Brewery. By far, one of my most favorite days.

TAKING MY MOM TO SEE 'THE COLOR PURPLE' ON BROADWAY

The moment I learned that Heather Headley would be taking on the role of Shug, I knew I had to see this show. And what better show to take your Mom to during a girls weekend?! It was one of the best shows I have seen thus far. After the show, I pulled my Mom quickly aside and stood to wait for the cast outside. We got to have our playbills signed by all of the main cast including Heather Headley and Cynthia Erivo. I was freaking out (on the inside of course). Sharing that moment with my Mom was amazing. 

SEEING ALICIA KEYS PERFORM IN ROCKEFELLER CENTER

I may have had to wake up at 4:30 A.M. to only stand in the back of the crowd behind a street light pole. But to hear Alicia Keys sing LIVE made all of it worth it. Not to mention, I got to share the moment with my best friend. We bonded over Alicia Keys music over a decade ago, when we first met and I'm pretty sure we will dance to 'No One' one day at my wedding. 

WITNESSING MY BEST FRIEND PROPOSE TO HIS BOYFRIEND

That dinner, those words and the tears shed will always be a night to remember. I can't wait to help plan their wedding and stand next to my best friend as he says 'I Do'.  Love is Love. 

FINDING NEW FRIENDSHIPS

Moving to a new city means meeting new friends. And although there are millions of people here, it almost makes it harder. Everyone is busy with work and the city hustle, so it's not often you find long lasting friendships. But I have been lucky to meet some amazing people and I am so glad I get to call them friends.

I never could have imagined all the things that would come with living in New York City. Every day still feels as exciting as the next. I can't wait to see what the next 365 days bring!

 

XO, Rae

THE FRIENDS WE KEEP

 
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Once you're in your thirties you realize that a few true friends are better than the twenty you used to have. I think it's important that women have a close group of girlfriends. I feel blessed to say that I have an amazing group of friends. 

Most of my girlfriends, I met when I was in my twenties. Your twenties are usually your unstable years. When you're partying, making up, breaking up and trying to figure out your life. If your friends can see you at this stage of your life and still be around after, they will typically become lifelong friends. 

All of my girlfriends have this in common: they are loyal, trustworthy and have a genuine interest in my life. I feel these qualities are hard to come by but are crucial when it comes to friendships. Often we surround ourselves with friends who are too caught up in their own life to take notice of ours. Friendship should be equal. It takes work just like any relationship. But in the end you want to feel they are just as invested in your life as you are in theirs.

I think it's also important to have a well rounded group of girlfriends. Different friendships serve different purposes in your life. And if all of your friends were alike, that would be pretty boring right?

One of my girlfriends, Brooke, is a few years younger than me. We are complete opposites in most aspects. She is bold, has never met a stranger and loves the outdoors. I'm more shy and quiet at first and not very outdoorsy unless it involves drinking on a patio. But we bonded over our passion for life and hard work. We both have recently moved to new states in efforts to chase our dreams. It's amazing to share those experiences with a friend who understands it first hand. 

Jenn is one of my girlfriends that I have known the longest. We met while working at a pediatric medical office and instantly became friends. She is soft spoken, smart, a great mother and can fix almost anything. Seriously, she can put most men to shame. She taught me a lot when I first started at the pediatric office and we both connected over our passion for working in the medical field and helping people. Through the years, we have shared countless stories of failed attempts of meeting Mr. Right, spent many nights out at the bars and have leaned on each other through difficult times. Jenn will forever be my wing woman at the bar and in life. We have had some of the best times and share stories only we can tell. 

Courtney, is my RIDE or DIE friend. Every girl needs one. That friend that never judges you or your mistakes. She is kind, quick witted, outspoken and doesn't let many people into her life easily. I consider myself lucky to be called her friend. She helped me to work through my past relationship with my ex and has always been a great listening ear. She is always honest when giving advice and that is what I love most about her. We have seen each other go through some of the most difficult times in our lives. And we have also celebrated many of life's happy moments like her newly born daughter. She is so worthy of becoming a Mother. She reminds me that even though life is full of unknowns, you still have to ride it out. 

My best friend, Lindsey, I saved for last. She is the most selfless person I have ever met. She is thoughtful, funny, kindhearted and will take you by surprise with her kick ass karaoke skills to 80's & 90's music. She will sing Salt -N- Pepa's "PUSH IT" like nobody's business. We could do nothing but sit in her living room and drink wine all night and be perfectly content. She and I like to do simple things: like go to festivals, eat cheap Mexican food, drink margaritas and craft things. Although she is now a busy Mom, she always makes time for our friendship. We understand each other and never have to apologize for what we say or think. She is honestly more like a sister to me. Friends who become family are the best types of friends. I can see us both sitting on a porch well into our 50's sipping wine and eating mint milanos.

I can't imagine my life without each of them. They are truly the best friends a girl could ever ask for. 

 

XO, Rae