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

 
GALENTINE'S DAY BLOG IMAGE

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

HOW TO KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSER WHEN IT FEELS LIKE DISTANCE IS TAKING OVER

 
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If you’ve ever moved long distance away from friends, chances are you’ve experienced what it’s like to maintain those friendships. And more often than not, you may have even had some faded friendships due to the strain of the distance. When I moved to New York a little over 4 years ago, I was anxious to leave my friends behind for that exact reason.  And being that most of my friends were ones that I had met in my late twenties and early thirties, I was more determined than ever to hold on those friendships. I knew distance would play a factor, but I wanted to do whatever I could on my part to keep my closest girlfriends in my life. Because these wen’t just acquaintances, these were friendships in which we had all been through life’s highs and lows together. And when in you’re in your 30’s, good friends are hard to come by.


And like any relationship, I think if you can withstand the distance long term then you know those are your people. And luckily for me, distance has actually made my friendships stronger. Mostly due to the fact that we all make an effort to stay in touch. With that being said, it is a huge commitment for us to maintain friendships even though we are miles apart. It’s not easy and I definitely can feel like I’m missing out in their everyday lives sometimes. And because I know many of you may have in the past or currently experiencing this in your own friendships. I wanted to share some ways in which you can keep your friends closer even at a distance.

Image via Pinterest

Image via Pinterest

Make a phone call/text

How many times do we say to friends;  “I’ve been thinking about you and just haven’t had a chance to call you”? Next time you have that thought, STOP and CALL that person. Because chances are if you don’t do it then, you’ll forget to later. If you’re not able to call, I personally love the voice message feature on iPhone that allows you to send a recorded voicemail via text message. It’s more personal than a text and easier to send when you don’t have a lot of time.  And if you’re not a phone person or maybe time in your day doesn’t allow for a phone call,  send a quick text just to say “I’m thinking of you, Let’s catch up soon!”. Or send a funny meme that you know your friend will get a laugh at. A simple message can help you and your friend be on each other’s radar, so to speak. This way it starts the conversation. And then you both can can be in touch to follow up on plans to have that catch up sesh you’ve been meaning to make time for.

Connect over FaceTime

Sometimes we just need that more personal connection with our friends especially if you don’t get to see them in person often. FaceTime or Video chat gives you both more of an opportunity to share real things going on in your lives.  And it also gives you a visual of what that looks like whether it be their home life or day to day life. You can even schedule a virtual wine night once a week/month to make it feel like you’re “hanging out” in person. Seeing each other over video helps you both to feel like you’re able to still have quality time together even miles apart.


Schedule a specific date and time to catch up

Discuss a specific date and/or time every week or month to talk over the phone. This will hold you both accountable and more likely to make good on the promise to catch up. Even if life gets busy and something comes up on that specific date, make an effort to reschedule to a new date & time right away.  We all have busy lives and realistically it can be hard to always make time for phone calls with friends. But I find that this helps to keep the momentum going by setting a specific goal.


Ask Questions

This is so important, especially when you might not get to catch up as often as you used to. When in conversation, make sure to ask your friend detailed questions. Ask about their job, kids, significant others, passion projects and any other relevant things going on in their lives. Asking specific questions helps to get a feel of their every day life and the current events that they are experiencing. It’s all about making the most out of the time that you do have when catching up via phone, FaceTime or even text. The more thoughtful your questions are, it will help make you  both feel invested in each other’s lives. And it also leaves you with follow up questions for the next conversation.

 

Send a note

Sending cards to friends is a great way to show them that you’re thinking of them. And it doesn’t have to be for any particular reason other than just saying, HELLO.  Or you can also send cards for fun holidays like National Friendship Day.  Handwritten notes are one of those things that always make you feel special when received by a friend. But if you have limited time and want something that is easy to send with a note attached, I love using INK cards. An app that allows you to send custom greeting cards straight from your cell phone and only costs $1.99 w/ shipping included! Sometimes the simplest gesture is the most appreciated.


Plan a trip in person

This may be a little harder to do with busy schedules, but I think it’s important to try and make an effort to have real face to face time. Make a plan to visit each other at least once a year. Or if you live really far away from one another, try to pick somewhere you can meet in the middle. Even if it’s only for a weekend. This will give you both something to look forward to, not to mention that you both can plan out the trip and discuss things you want to do when you get there. There is nothing better than spending real quality time your friend who you haven’t seen in what feels like forever.

 

best friend quote

What have you found helpful when it comes to long distance friendships?! I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.


XO, Rae

5 PODCASTS TO KEEP YOU MOTIVATED IN 2019

 
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I'll admit, I'm new (ish) to the obsession with listening to podcasts. I've seen so many other bloggers, female entrepreneurs and friends rave about how much they LOVE podcasts. As well as how they use them for motivation in their daily life. So over the past six months, I’ve been doing some listening of my own. And I’ve discovered some podcasts that I really enjoy and think you will too!  Each of these podcasts bring something different to the table whether it be career advice, business savviness, entrepreneurship realness or big life goals motivation. And what I found most in common with all of these podcasts, is that they are each driven by amazing women. Who are determined to share empowering messages and create more conversations amongst other women no matter what life phase you are currently going through.

 

1. SKIMM'D FROM THE COUCH

If you read theSkimm, then you'll love their podcast. if you're not a reader already, you should be. This podcast discusses everything from starting a business, career advice and how to be successful as an entrepreneur. And it all comes from powerful females who share their highs and lows of their careers and business ventures. Each episode is around 30 minutes, so it's a great podcast to listen to even on days when you don't have a lot of time. 

 

2. OFF THE VINE W/ KAITLYN BRISTOWE

Former Bachelorette contestant Kaitlyn Bristowe talks candidly to everyone from Hollywood stars, country artists to current and past Bachelor/Bachelorette cast members. I love how she just keeps it real and doesn't hold back from any topic. She is all about empowering men and women to be themselves. Oh and there's lots of wine involved which always makes for entertaining moments.

 

3. SECOND LIFE 

This podcast is an extension of one of my favorite websites, MYDOMAINE.com. Who What Wear and MyDomaine Co-founder Hillary Kerr, interviews women who have embarked on a whole new career at all different sages in life. And these women tell their story of how they did it and started their second life.  This podcast is always inspiring an will leave you motivated to take on your passion project.

 

4.  GOAL DIGGER W/ JENNA KUTCHER

Jenna Kutcher is all about teaching women how to turn their passion into profit. She was once a corporate girl turned photographer, now entrepreneur who teaches other creatives & entrepreneurs how to live their best life. She discusses everything from finding your passion, how to make money, building a brand, social media strategies and more. She also shares her personal life in which she openly talks about her struggle with infertility and how she hopes to help empower other women to love their body at any size.

 

5. Rise Podcast by Rachel Hollis

You may be familiar with Rachel Hollis from her NY Times Best Selling Book Girl, Wash Your Face. In her podcast she discusses and gives real life examples of how to live your best life both personally and professionally. It’s hard not to walk away feeling empowered and motivated after listening to each episodes.

 

 

Do you have any favorite podcasts?! Drop your podcast recommendations in the comments below so we can all have a list of ones to try!

 

XO, Rae 

THANKFUL & GRATEFUL

 
thankful & grateful

Happy Thanksgiving Eve, y’all! This morning I woke up feeling excited for the Holiday season ahead. And then immediately felt anxious for everything that needs to be accomplished today and in the days ahead. The cooking, baking, shopping, traveling, attending holiday parties, hosting out of town guest and the added stress of trying to find the perfect gift for friends and loved ones.

I reminded myself in that moment to stop and take a breathe, because all of those things are NOT what’s important. Gifts are nice and shopping is fun, but it’s the little things and moments in between that matter the most. It’s time spent with family & friends, giving back to those who are less fortunate, sending hand written cards, sharing recipes with friends, decorating the tree and most of all making memories.

So as you start to prep for the holiday weekend, take a moment to reflect on what you’re thankful for this Thanksgiving. I know I will be doing the same. Practicing gratitude is something that can quickly change our mood and certainly gives us perspective on what really matters in life. I hope you all enjoy the Holiday weekend with your friends and family.


Image via Pinterest

Image via Pinterest


Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving!


XO, Rae

HOW TO LET GO FOR GOOD

 
how to let go for good

Even when it's hard to walk away from something, doing so allows you to be reminded that life goes on regardless. You should NEVER stay stuck in something. And yet we often feel compelled or obligated to stay in our complicated relationships, dead end jobs or unfulfilled friendships. Which begs the question: WHY?! Honestly, I think it has a lot to do with FEAR. Fear of letting go. Fear of moving on. Fear of what we may leave behind. Fear of the unknown. So, how do you let go even when you know it's the best thing to do? 

This is an area in my life that to be honest, I still struggle with. I'm good at holding on to things even when I know they aren't good for me. And I'm even better at letting things stay the same for fear of the "what if's". But as I've gotten older, I have learned that letting go doesn't have to be a bad thing. It often means freeing yourself from the things that are no longer serving you. And it can also be exactly what you need to move forward in your life. So I'm sharing three steps that have helped me deal with letting go in life, and maybe can help you as well. 

 

ACCEPT THE FACT THAT CHANGE IS NEEDED 

The first step, is to admit that something needs to change. Maybe you feel like you don't have many options right now, but there is always a choice that can be made. Easier said than done, I know. But ask yourself, am I happy? And then ask yourself, what can I do about it? Also, remind yourself that you can't do the same thing over and over again and expect different results. Change is hard, but once you make the commitment to do it, you've already taken the first big step in letting go.  

 

BE OPEN TO WHAT COMES NEXT 

Second, I think you have to be willing to be open to what comes after you let go. Which is often scary to embrace the unknown. But it can also be liberating if you allow yourself the opportunity. Commit to your decision made and let life happen. Don't let the fear of what could happen stop you from pursuing a new outcome. This is where the real work begins, because it's much easier to allow ourselves to stay in a comfortable place rather than be open to new possibilities. But if we do the work, things often start to fall in place over time. 

 

LEARN TO NOT LOOK BACK 

Lastly, I think that you have to be confident in your decision moving forward. Remind yourself everyday if you have to, why you made the decision to let go in the first place. And then place your trust in the process. Don't beat yourself up over the what if's, or bumps along the way. Sometimes the things that lie ahead of us test us the most. And as you move forward, don't look back unless you plan on using that glimpse as motivation to keep going. Otherwise, stay the course and know that life is what you make of it. 

 

I would love to hear from you all, and what has helped you in situations of letting go? Comment below.  

 

XO, Rae

TUESDAY TALK: THOUGHTS + LIFE UPDATES

 
Tuesday Talk

Do you ever have one of those days where you have a million things to do, yet you have no energy and can't seem to focus for five minutes, let alone five hours to accomplish everything?! Yeah, that's ME today. Most likely due to the fact that I stayed out wayyyy to late last night. A night out to see a friend perform at a comedy club turned into drinks afterward, then turned into staying to watch a Drag show (always a good time) and then turned into late night food shopping at a local deli. Because drinking + 1am = hungry. 

So here I am, writing this post from bed, still in my pajamas and drinking a large cup of coffee at 2pm. #struggleisreal Although I really should be checking emails, packing for my trip to Boston tomorrow and deciding what to wear for a concert I'm going to tonight. But since I have so much on my mind. I thought I'd just do a brain dump of everything and share with y'all things I have coming up, a few beauty products I've been trying lately, Summer plans, etc. 

 

On my mind....

This week in therapy, I learned that I need to work on accepting the outcome of things whether good, bad or indifferent. So, I'm practicing telling myself that "I will be okay no matter the outcome of  ______________". This may not seem like a big deal to some, but for me it's something I struggle with. I came across this quote this morning and it resonated with me. And I felt compelled to share it with y'all in case any of you are needing the same reminder. 

Quote

 

 

Things I'm looking forward to...

1. Concert with a friend tonight to see JoJo 🎤perform LIVE for her #LeaksCoversandMixTapes Tour. This will my second time seeing her in concert and I can't wait to hear her sing all the songs she never got to release on albums. Follow me over on IG, I'll be posting stories tonight while at the concert. 

2. Taking a trip to Boston tomorrow and staying overnight. This will be my first time visiting MA. Hoping to do some exploring through Boston Commons, Back Bay and check out a few restaurants that the locals eat at. I'll be doing a future blog post to round up everything I do, see and eat while staying in Boston. ⚓️

3. Going to my FIRST Yankees game this July. ⚾️ Full disclosure: the YANKEES are playing the BRAVES. And as excited as I am to be going to my first New York Team sporting event, you know I gotta rep the ATL. So wish me luck.....because I’ll be THAT girl in my Braves tee in a stadium full of Yankee fans. Always a GA Girl at heart. ❤️

 

Beauty products you need....

This mascara primer is my new favorite. If you haven't been using a primer before applying mascara, you should be! It's a game changer, especially if you have short lashes and are wanting that extra volume. 

My holy grail facial spray. You may have seen me talk about this product on Instagram before. But seriously, I can't say enough good things about this facial spray. It's great for using as a setting spray for your make up, or to freshen up your skin throughout the day or to give your skin that extra hydration. I typically use it morning and night and I carry a travel size bottle in my bag at all times. I've definitely seen a difference in the way my skin looks, clearer complexion and super hydrated. 

The best shampoo if you have colored or highlighted hair. I've been using this shampoo 1-2x a week for a few months now. And it's made a major difference with my hair. Red hair color always seems to fade quickly and tends to get brassy, but not anymore with using this product. I instantly see a difference after each use and it helps my highlights and overall color stay longer. 

 

 

I hope y'all enjoyed this post! It was fun to share a bit of real life in the making. I always want to just keep it real around here and share what's going on IRL. Also, I'd love to hear what your plans are for SUMMER. You can check out my full Summer Bucket List here

 

 

XO, Rae 

 

WHY YOU SHOULDN'T COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS

 
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At some point in our lives, we all have fallen victim to the comparison trap. Myself included. Whether it be in our careers, personal life or even with friends. And now days with social media, comparing ourselves to others has become easier now more than ever. It's easy to scroll through Instagram and feel like our lives don't look as glamorous. as others and even feel like we don't have it all together. But it's important to know that social media is often a highlight reel and that we all have REAL lives outside of those pretty feeds. Here are a few things to remember the next time you find yourself comparing your life to those around you. 

 

Everyone has a story (including you). We all have baggage. We all have ups & downs. We all have hopes & dreams. Which means we all have a past, present and future. And just because other people don't always put their baggage out there, it doesn't mean that it does not exist. Sometimes it's easy to only put the shiny pretty things in our life on display. But let's be for real, we all have days where life looks more like a hot mess than a pretty mess. Everyone's story is different. 

 

Others success isn't always what it seems. Maybe they worked really hard. Maybe they just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Or maybe they had a ton of help along the way to get where they are. The truth is, you don't always know how others go to be where they are now. And for that reason alone, you shouldn't compare your beginning to what could be their middle or end. 

 

You have to find your OWN voice. The more you compare yourself to others and admire their traits, the more you may actually start doing things they would do. And not necessarily what is true to you and your character. Be authentically YOU even if you feel like it's not the norm. People look to those who stay original. 

 

Everyone has been exactly where you are. We all go through life's ups and downs. We've all been exhausted, overwhelmed, overworked and stressed out at some point in our lives. And we're basically just trying to figure it all out along the way. Nobody has all the answers, so don't put so much pressure on yourself to do the same. 

 

How do YOU deal with the comparison trap? Would love to hear your thoughts! Comment below.

 

XO, Rae