Nov 30, 2015

Operation Get Fit!

Hi loves! It's Monday again. This Monday I am feeling motivational and rejuvenated so I wanted to share a very personal post with you. As some may already know, I hit rockbottom a few weeks ago and began to take steps to help with my depression and anxiety. I have been in good spirits for the past few days and that is due to my decision to change my everyday behavior and lifestyle. For the past few months, I have been trying my hardest to keep a healthy diet and train my body but I have not been having much luck. At first, I wanted to get fit and healthy because I thought it would make me look good. I thought my body would be the bomb like all of those fit Instagram models. Finally, I realized that I was not going to get the true benefit of my workout and diet if I was doing it for that reason. I needed to change my outlook so I did. I told myself that I was making this lifestyle change because it would make me feel better. It would make my mind, body and spirit feel better each day. 

I am not perfect because perfect does not exist. So I may be a size 4 but that does not mean I am healthy. Your body is the temple that houses your soul. You have to take care of it. You can choose to care for it in whatever way you prefer. If yoga is your forte then do yoga daily. If weight lifting is your forte, get in the gym and do some heavy lifting. Whatever you choose, do it often and do it for you. I am a lover of yoga and intense training so that is mostly what I will be doing for my daily workouts. I will be working out 5 times a week to begin the journey. I will be changing my diet as well. I am still in the process of researching what diet is beneficial for me which is very important to do. Google is a good source but it can often be misleading so keep that in mind. I am already pretty lean so I will need to consume more carbs and protein daily to ensure that my calorie intake correlates with my training. This change will not be easy for me but I am willing to take the lead of my life. 

So for those wondering, I currently weigh 120 pounds and I am 5'7.5. I have always been tall and lean. My entire life, I have been referred to as "skinny". Needless to say, you all may be frowning at me at this point. A lot of people always assume that working out and getting fit is only for those who are looking to lose weight. This is completely false and incorrect. Do not only associate a healthy lifestyle with weight loss. Anyone can choose a healthy lifestyle. I chose it because it makes me feel better about myself. Since this change, I feel more energized during the day, my stress levels have decreased, my anxiety has decreased and overall I feel healthy and that feeling is amazing.

I still have a long way to go before I can truly say I am happy with my progress but I am only in the beginning stages. Progress takes time and more importantly devotion. I will be sure to share this time with you all on a weekly bases. Updates on my diet plan, progress and thoughts will be shared with you all through the "Fitness" category on Brokecitygrl. I hope this motivates you to get moving this Monday.

Let's get fit!

Nov 28, 2015

The Aftermath

Photography by Joshua Shelton

I hope everyone is doing well and starting this weekend off on a great start. I don't know about you but I am feeling a bit guilty today because of the amount of turkey and sweet potatoes I consumed this Thursday and Friday. The aftermath always hits me like a ton of bricks. I feel so 'unhealthy' and heavy. I don't want to wear anything but baggy clothes and comfy shoes. I know I am not alone in this and I am sure most of you all feel the same way as I do. If so, just embrace the essence of this Lookbook.

This entire look is geared towards getting back into the gist of your life and lifestyle. For me, my lifestyle (for the most part) consist of blogging, being active and staying comfortable in my skin. In order to recuperate from the massive plates of food and the lazy holiday blues, I have to get up and get out. Literally, I feel the need to dress up in a super cute outfit and go out and get some fresh air. So that is exactly what I did. 

My favorite piece in this look is the jumper dress from Zara. It is very lightweight which does not make me feel heavier than I already do. The shape of the dress is also perfect for me because it does not add any shape or accentuate any parts of my body that I feel are not flattering at this point in time--aka my pudgy belly. The fact that it has pockets is a bonus. The Converse sneakers were a nice touch to make this look very casual and comfortable. It would have been easy for me to throw on some heeled ankle boots but who wants to wear heels when you are trying to get your life together--not I :).

D E T A I L S:

Dress- purchased from ZARA, TRF collection for around $39.90.
Turtleneck- purchased from Forever 21 for around $15.
Tights- purchased from H&M for $17.99 (4 come in a pack).
Sneakers- purchased from the Converse Outlet for around $50.

I am hoping this will help you feel better about your situation this Saturday. I understand the struggle of the holiday-itis and I am here to tell you, you are not alone. Just find the right outfit, get dolled up and head out. That alone will make you feel a lot better. It sure did help me.

Nov 25, 2015

Holiday Cheer!

Photography by Joshua Shelton
Thanksgiving is tomorrow! I am so excited for this Thanksgiving. It is one of my favorite holidays of the year. The main reason being is that most of my family come together in one house and love on each other for the entire day. It is an amazing time for us all. We share laughter, hugs, kisses and stories for the day and it brings so much joy to us. This Thanksgiving my mother is hosting at her home and we will have a total of about 12 to 15 people there. Our close family members will be in town for the weekend and our friends will be joining us for our evening dinner.

In my household, Thanksgiving dinner is pretty informal. We usually wear casual clothing and play board games and the Wii for the day. However, I have always loved the idea of dressing up for a holiday dinner but it just isn't apart of our tradition. I am truly okay with that but I thought it would be awesome to share a Lookbook to show you a great way to style your basic pieces for a snazzy holiday look.

Each piece in this look I already had in my closet-- a basic v-neck, a blazer, palazzo pants and the classic black pump. The pants are definitely the showstopper in this Lookbook. I found them at Nordstrom Rack on sale for just under $20 and I knew they would surely come in handy. They are some what of a heavier fabric so they are ideal for the colder weather. They have a slight shimmer to them and the mint green color is so beautiful to the eye. I figured I would style the rest of the outfit around the pants and keep it simple and classic. The detailed blazer adds sophistication to the look which we all want for a formal holiday dinner. The v-neck is very subtle which we need in this look to tone down the blazer and bright pants. Together, these pieces make for the ideal holiday outfit in my eyes.
Shirt- Basic V-neck from the TRF Collection at Zara, purchased for under $10.
Blazer- purchased from Missguided for under $25.
Pants- purchased from Nordstrom Rack for around $15.
Shoes- Basic black pumps from Topshop for $20.
Bracelet- Vintage purchased from Eastern Market in D.C.
Necklace- Delicate rose gold pendant necklace from She's Unique for around $40.
I hope this look puts you in the holiday mood. I wish you all the best Thanksgiving day and hope that you spend it with family and friends.
Happy Thanksgiving loves!


Nov 20, 2015

A Better Day

Photography by Joshua Shelton

Today, I choose happy. I woke up feeling like a better Self. I felt comfortable in my skin. I felt comfortable in my space. I felt comfortable in my journey. I am not perfect because perfect does not exist. It is okay to be flawed and to feel doubtful. It is not okay to sit in darkness and allow your spirit to stay low. So today, I choose happy and tomorrow I choose happy and every day forward, I will choose happy.

With all that has been going on with me, I decided to share this Lookbook with you all because I miss blogging and sharing pieces of me, with you. Blogging, being behind the camera and embracing fashion and styling is what makes me more than happy in life so to get through this journey of healing, I think it would be best to journey on through Broke City Grl. This Lookbook is an older one, I am not going to lie but sharing is caring.

I styled this look with minimalism in mind. I have always been a minimalist for the most part as I find it is easier for me to dress in timeless pieces. This white button up tunic is definitely a timeless piece. It is so perfectly detailed and structured. I found this bad boy on sale at Topshop in Springfield Town Center as I was on my way to see the Peanut's Movie. I saw a sale sign and had to make a detour and I am so glad I did because I will cherish this tunic/shirt forever. The best part about has pockets! Pure perfection.

D E T A I L S:

Shirt/Tunic- purchased from Topshop on sale for around $25.
Jeans- purchased a long time ago from Marshalls, Levis brand.
Shoes- purchased from H&M for $49.99.
Handbag- Cynthia Rowley purchased from T.J. Maxx (not sure of the price).

I believe this entire outfit cost me less than $200. That is what I live for! Be sure to keep those timeless pieces in your wardrobe. You will regret consigning them or throwing them away.

Trust me!

Nov 16, 2015

Dear Self: Forgotten

Face the facts. Overcome the fears.

You feel forgotten. Forgotten by many. 

You love so hard, that when someone leaves you, moves on, passes you by, you feel forgotten. 

Forgotten and left in the past. 

But everyone around you says you have a shining light.

What they don't know is that you feel nothing but darkness inside. 

You feel forgotten. Forgotten by your friends. 

You haven't talked to many of them in months. And it bothers you. 

It bothers you because, they seem happy and you are just forgotten and left with emptiness inside. 

You feel forgotten. Forgotten by your ex-loves.

You care so much that you check on them to see how they are doing. 

Their responses are nonchalant and distasteful. They move on and you are still forgotten.

You explain these feelings to your family but they just can't seem to understand. 

They just say, "you are worth more than them" or "f*** them". But the pain still lingers. 

It isn't about them. This feeling of forgetfulness is deep rooted and you need to get to the bottom of it.

You look up the word depression.

Depression. A noun. It is defined as the "feelings of severe despondency and dejection."

Could you be depressed? Feeling discouraged and in a state of low spirits.

This is not how you imagined your life to be.

So why?

Why do you feel forgotten? Why is it that you love so hard and when it is not returned it saddens you.

Deeply saddens you. 

You must address these emotions and this pain because it is beginning to affect your day to day. 

You are not the same. You are not happy and you are not gracious like you once were.

You have to talk to someone. You have to figure this out. It will break you if you don't.

It is time to face the facts and overcome the fears. 

P.S. Depression is a serious illness. If you are feeling doubtful, in low spirits, are having anxiety issues or any other symptoms as those mentioned in this post, please consult a physician immediately. Seek help, that is most important when dealing with depression. 


Nov 14, 2015

Free + Flowy

Photography by Joshua Shelton
Happy Saturday, I hope each of you are doing well and embracing life. I feel so thrilled to be sharing another Lookbook with you all to jump start this weekend. I styled this look to better show you all an easy and simple chic way to wear slip-on sneakers. A few post back, I discussed a new Trend Alert that gained a lot of popularity. This new trend has been booming for a while now. I have always loved slip-on sneakers but I could never find the perfect pair that fit me. Luckily, The Shoe Hive had my back. I purchased these comfortable leather Vince Camuto sneakers from The Shoe Hive almost a month ago and I cannot stop wearing them. As soon as I slipped them on my feet, I knew I just had to have them.

This outfit is my ideal casual Saturday look. Like most people on Saturday, I lean more towards free flowing pieces. The boyfriend jeans along with the H&M poncho is perfectly styled for practicality and comfort. The poncho sweater is truly one of my favorite pieces for the fall and winter. It is a staple layering item. I can layer it with dresses, sweaters, button up shirts and more. This is definitely a great purchase for the winter. If you all are interested in these exact pieces, I included full details below. Like always.


Poncho Sweater- purchased from H&M for $34.99
Boyfriend Jeans- Levis Brand jeans purchased from Marshall's for around $25
Shoes- Vince Camuto purchased from The Shoe Hive for around $250
Scarf- purchased from H&M for $17.99

For another take on this comfortable free flowing outfit, I would throw on an oversized sweater instead of the poncho. An easy transition to another chic look.

Till next time!

Nov 7, 2015

Soft + Sophisticated

Photography by Joshua Shelton
Rise + shine to you all and Happy Saturday! I hope all of you are well and ready for another amazing Lookbook. Today's look is my spin on sophisticated winter wear. For those who work in an office setting or young professionals in general, it can be hard figuring out ways to stay warm and still look the part. I have had trouble with this myself but I found a few things that work well for me. First, I decided that tights were "okay" to wear. Often times, we want to wear cute dresses and skirts but it may be too cold out and not many of us are fans of tights. Just go for a simple black tight. I say, add it to your work wardrobe for the winter and you won't regret it. They aren't that expensive so you can stock up on them if that is easiest for you. It will truly make a difference and you will be able to wear your spring and fall dresses straight through December and January. Next, I have invested in ankle booties--heeled preferred. H&M has a great selection of comfortable ankle booties that can be worn in a professional setting. Lastly, get a ton of blazers. I have always been a lover of blazers but I found that they are the best statement piece for work wear in the winter. 

This look was put together as the outcome of considering the 3 tips I mentioned above. The turtleneck sweater dress is the show stopper in this look. I love the versatility of this dress. For the purpose of this Lookbook I chose to dress it up but it can certainly be worn as a casual piece if preferred. All the details are below loves! 

D E T A I L S:

Dress- purchased at Forever 21 for $25
Blazer- purchased at H&M (boyfriend blazer) for around $25
Tights- purchased at H&M for $9.99 (it was a two pack of tights)
Shoes- purchased at H&M for around $30-$50 (I can't truly remember)
Watch- Anne Klein, received as a gift

For those interested, I will begin adding a "get the look" shopping browser to help you all find the pieces I mention often in my post. Stay tuned!

Nov 5, 2015

A Beautiful Fall Day

Photography by Joshua Shelton
Yesterday was absolutely amazing. I woke up this morning feeling so blessed and grateful for all that has come my way this year. In the month of October, I was blessed to meet Joshua, a photographer and creative mind. I introduced you all to him a while back on Brokecitygrl. He is a new creative that has graciously decided to collaborate with me on Brokecitygrl. Our focus and goal is to create beautiful, relatable and unique content that is able to resonate with women. Yesterday, we did our first photo shoot and it was by far the best shoot I have done. We found an amazing historical white house in Oldtown, Alexandria by the water. It was the perfect location. The environment was relaxing, the scenery was immaculate and the character of the house made our creative minds go crazy. Needless to say, we were able to create our first of many, Lookbooks for you all. This Lookbook is very casual driven. I would wear this look to work, to a day out with friends or to a quick lunch date. See all the details below.

D E T A I L S:

Sweater- purchased from Buffalo Exchange for $20 (H&M brand)
Pants- purchased from Urban Outfitters for $19.99 (I think)
Shoes- purchased from Forever 21 for $25
Watch- given as a gift from Marshalls (Anne Klein)
Bracelets- Vintage found at Eastern Market
You all can also watch my newest YouTube video by clicking the link below!


Nov 4, 2015

Dear Self: Looking For Happiness

Find happiness from within.
You have been searching for happiness for the past few months. Yearning for something or someone, to make you happy.
But no one can truly make you happy other than yourself.
No one knows your happy better than you do.

Do not depend on others to make you happy.

Because once they go, so does your happiness. Not saying that they all will go, but some surely will.
And that is O.K.

You need to ensure that when they go, your happiness stays.

Find it from within and keep it close.

You have been on a self-love journey for quite sometime and you truly have not learned anything.

You still yearn for love elsewhere, you still compare your life to theirs and you still are not in love with yourself as you should be.

It will not happen overnight. You know this. But are you even trying?
Take a moment and answer this question.
What is your happy?
It is a hard question to answer.
You do not need to know the answer today but each day forward, find one thing that makes you happy.
Today, one answer to the question is writing. Writing is your happy.
So keep writing.
Write often. Write honestly. Write graciously. Write happily.
Find your happiness from within.

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