But give thanks

I’m back and this one is short and sweet!

So what do you do when you feel like throwing in the towel? Sometimes, it just seems easier to say “forget it” and move on. I have done it plenty of times but always come right back to that same towel #smh.

After thinking about what may have seemed impossible, I move on it. A dear friend recently told me a quote her pastor said: “God blesses moving people.” And I’ll add devoted people too.

With that being said:

  1. Don’t give up on launching your business. Just do it.
  2. Don’t give up on your family because they come first.
  3. Don’t give up on losing weight. It’s a process and eventually it will happen.
  4. Don’t give up on that project at work. You will be rewarded.
  5. Don’t give up on your finances. Do the best you can and keep at it.
  6. Don’t give up on your life even though the diagnosis may be grim. Go live.
  7. Don’t give up on your marriage. You said “for better or worse.”
  8. Don’t give up on love. It happens when it’s supposed to happen.
  9. Don’t give up on what you really want – big or small.
  10. And finally, don’t ever give up on yourself; but give thanks for where you are in this moment and where you plan to go.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain…

Sun Taylor

 

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Strapped in for 40…part two

Forty came and went. And before she arrived, I wrote out 40 things I’d like to accomplish this year before the next birthday in August.

Here is the post I wrote back in June and where I stand on some of the items. I’ll keep you posted.

Enjoy!

____

Wooosah.

In about two months, I turn the big 4-0. How did that happen? I feel like I was just 25 and now I’ve been married for almost 11 years with three kids. And . . . this California girl is living in Atlanta.

So what does 40 mean? Do you cry? Eat? Or have a mid-life crisis? Well, I plan to eat and see whatever else falls into my lap. One of my friends @momsdestiny suggested I complete 40 things to commemorate the year; sure and I’ll send her the bill later.

But it did get me thinking. What would you do if you could complete 40 things of your choice in a year? Here is my long list and maybe –just maybe–I’ll make it through ALL of them. Hopefully my husband is taking notes #teehee

  1. Visit Italy with the hubby
  2. Horseback riding on a beautiful beach
  3. Visit Barbados and never come back (just kidding!)
  4. Take a trip with my kids to Hershey Park
  5. Get a massage on the beach
  6. Go to the opera (found someone I can attend with next Spring!)
  7. Visit the Grand Canyon
  8. Take my mom to New York (I still can’t believe she’s never been)
  9. Test drive a Porsche
  10. Buy a designer purse – Fendi, Birkin, Louis, Gucci- you know one of those
  11. Swim with dolphins
  12. Drive across country
  13. Wine tour in Napa Valley
  14. Take a magic pill to lose weight in two days (the struggle is real)
  15. Ride on a motorcycle with my husband- sun shades and Daisy Dukes #yep
  16. Actually play on a golf course
  17. Take an Alaskan cruise
  18. Decorate my little girl’s room – for real this time (took the first steps to do this last week)
  19. Run the Peachtree Roadrace
  20. Learn some Spanish
  21. Make a homemade apple pie (done!)
  22. Roast a big ass turkey (this will be for Thanksgiving)
  23. Take my kids to Disney World
  24. Paddle boat around the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C.
  25. Go up in the Washington Monument
  26. Visit the 9/11 Memorial
  27. Visit the National Museum of African American Culture and History ( I got tickets for December)
  28. Visit the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
  29. Take a water aerobics class
  30. Get a FitBit
  31. Join a book club (done!)
  32. Complete my business website (done!)
  33. Volunteer when I can ( I have volunteered in September, October, and working on November)
  34. Open another barber shop with my husband
  35. Go camping or shall I say “glamping.”
  36. Take a girls trip
  37. Invest in property
  38. Participate in a bible study at church (done!)
  39. Turn 41
  40. Have fun even on the rainy days

Forty, here I come baby #adjustscrown

Because the sun always comes out after the rain. . .

Sun Taylor

Off

When you feel off, you are.

Last week, I had a conversation with someone dear to my heart and felt like something was wrong and couldn’t figure it out.

We talked again and realized we both were thinking the same. Thankfully, we figured it out. A loved one had passed: I didn’t know and she thought I did. Talk about being off the mark.

When you feel different or off, do you act on it or let it ride? I let this one ride for a week knowing something wasn’t right. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Trust your instincts and feelings.

We all have that sixth sense. Think about all the moments you trusted your gut and didn’t go, decided to call for whatever reason, or took another route–and it was for the better.

According to care2.com, there are five gut instincts you should always trust as it relates to feeling “some type of way:”

  1. Something feels wrong in my body
    This goes without saying. Your body will tell you when something is wrong. Check it out.
  2. I’m in danger
    The feeling you get in that first 10 seconds about a person or situation is the truth. You know what you have to do – remove yourself.
  3. I want to help
    Most times we think of our instincts as a way to avoid something bad. But there is also good with our gut feelings. If you feel compelled from within, help.
  4. I know how to do this
    Too many times we think we can’t, when we know we can. Don’t overthink it. You got this #me
  5. This is it
    When you know, that you know, that you know, there is no conflict and it comes easy – love, a job, whatever.

The next time you feel off: question it, figure it out, and trust those instincts.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain…

Sun Taylor

When it doesn’t happen

Hello there! We are taking it back to December when I was excited about an opportunity that didn’t happen. But now I know it was all on God’s timing. 

Sometimes we have to be thankful it didn’t happen. 

Enjoy!

———

You’re excited to start a new opportunity, you await that special call…and then…or you’ve met a great person, you connect well with them…and then…REJECTION!

Immediately, you show up to the pity party, early, crying the blues to all your family and friends and indulge in making yourself feel bad for yet another failed opportunity, relationship, or situation.

Apparently there are 14 steps to different types of rejection according to wikihow. Who has time for that? I surely don’t and need the recovery to be quick if I can help it. THANKS!

But in all seriousness, rejection is tough. How can we continue to experience it and still keep going? How do we ultimately react?  Well, guess what? Surprise, you’re going to be OK.

Too many times we blame ourselves for not getting that job or the relationship/friendship that didn’t work out. Honestly, the first reaction to rejection, at least for me, is the feeling of “darn, what happened” or “how did I mess this up.” Nope, take those words right on back because there’s something on the other side of the rainbow – a pot of gold.

Recently, I was looking forward to an opportunity that didn’t work out. I was hopeful and then the rejection came. First, I sunk and then felt like I let a couple of people down. But, these were the same people that said “well, that was their loss.” I quickly snapped out of it -well, maybe after a day- and moved on.

The next day the rainbow showed up and a past client called me to do some work- the pot of gold was right there.

Once we realize all things will work out for us and not against us, true peace takes place and rejection becomes a redirection. At that moment, when you accept rejection with a different outlook, you realize it wasn’t for you and move on quickly. This is also the revelation.

Everything is not according to the way YOU want the chips to fall. God’s plan is not man’s plan. He actually laughs when we make plans – insert a huge laugh here -pwhahhhahaha- just like that.

There’s always something bigger and better for you. When rejection comes your way and stands in front, step around it, say thank you, and await the next opportunity. I promise, it’s coming.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain…

Sun Taylor

P.S. Thank you to @nopressurenodiamondz…this one’s for us!

 

 

 

Simon says “Family”

Summer is coming and there will be plenty of family gatherings around the grill, at the pool, or in the park. This week was a lesson in what is most important when it comes to family – love.  No matter what happens, they’re still family.

This post is from this past holiday season. I enjoyed it because with all our quirkiness, we always come right back together… because Simon says so :o)

Smooches!

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Alex, I’ll take family for $500!

The holidays are around the corner which equals family time. Whether for Thanksgiving or Christmas, let the planning begin . . . with a glass of wine.

This year for Thanksgiving we are diverting from our usual plans and heading to the Blue Ridge Mountains in Georgia. We’re looking forward to a beautiful cabin, wooded scenery, and devouring a festive meal.

Considering that my family is primarily women, you quickly learn to adapt to the personalities:

The matriarchs (the aunts/moms) who pretty much rule the land and the kitchen for that matter. We love them and they love their family. But please don’t cross them . . . or else.

The cousins who pretty much do their thing and keep in contact with one another albeit Facebook or text messaging. When we do call one another, it’s usually to gossip like any other family. Tee hee :o)

The men who keep to themselves and interject when they see the women making absolutely no sense. It happens from time-to-time. Well maybe all the time. LOL.

Last, there are the youngest three munchkins who happen to be my kids. They provide comic relief ALL THE TIME; amusing at most gatherings. Yep, that’s my kid dancing to The Dramatics or Michael Jackson and off beat.

So back to the cabin trip for 13. Easy-peasy right? That’s 13 different personalities. BREATHE.  This week, the Gods challenged us but it worked out. Quickly came the teachings, lessons, and a dose of patience:

  1. Every family member has an opinion – don’t take it personal. It wouldn’t be “fun” if everyone was the same, right? Sure.
  2. All budgets are not made equal. Attempt to find a happy money medium and make it work. Count the pennies wisely.
  3. This is not the time to suddenly announce “I’m vegan.” Get in where you fit in. Have a nice salad with that dinner roll.
  4. Someone will complain about something that everyone else agrees upon. No worries, just nip it in the bud and move on.
  5. Acknowledge that you’re family . . . like the same blood line. You’ll have to speak to each other (or maybe not if you choose) so keep your cool. It’s not that serious.
  6. Have answers to all the odd questions beforehand and be prepared to explain yourself a couple of times. Patience luv!
  7. Think before you speak. And then think again. Then give your Alex Trebek answer “What is Crazy Family 2016.”
  8. Take a moment to step back if you get flustered. Then come back to it. Your head will be much clearer. And ask for help when you need it.
  9. Make sure there’s plenty of wine.
  10. Make sure there’s plenty of wine.

But in all honesty, be thankful for family and what they bring to the Thanksgiving or Christmas table. Without them, I’m not sure where I’d be. #MyVillage

Because the sun always comes out after the rain. . .

Sun Taylor

 

Take your time and take time for you

This one is a #tbt post when I first started my blog last year. I can’t begin to tell you how much of a priority it is, especially now, for me to take time for myself and to plan my day. If you don’t work, NOTHING else will work.

Smooches!


Paint your toe nails (original post)

Husband: What’s that?
Me: My weekly planner or “Slay Your Day,” planner.
Husband: Weird look
Me: What?
Husband: So what are doing?
Me: Uhh, planning my day for tomorrow
Husband: Why?
Me: So I stay on task, investing into myself. MAYBE you should try it (side eye)
Husband: Crickets . . .

So, just know that I have a great husband who is all about his business and “slaying,” if there’s a male version of that. But every now and then,  I say things just to see his reaction . . . or not . . . love you honey :o).

Now back to me. Last week I was dealing with a lot and suddenly became overwhelmed. My oldest son wasn’t using his “listening ears or walking feet” in school, I was attempting to post to social media for our business, and then felt like I could NOT get through my to-do list. And then I broke down, let it all out, and got back up again.

Being at home these days, I feel like there’s always something to be done. But have realized, I want to get everything done without truly planning it out; like helping my husband with the barber shop, getting my media and events company on the right track, while caring for my 6 month-old and thinking about my other two kids. I was all over the place and needed to get focused. Luckily, The Slay Your Day Planner for bloggers by Mattie James, or anyone for that matter, came to my rescue (shout out to the BFF. Thank you!)

We all become overwhelmed when we don’t take time to plan and take a moment for ourselves. This week I learned the importance of time blocks and being realistic with how much time something will really take me.

I started (and hope to keep it up):

  1. Morning: meditating for 5 minutes, praying, and reading a chapter in the bible
  2. Throughout the day: Attempting to think more positively even when things go wrong.
  3. Evening: filling out my planner for the next day with detail – even down to what I plan to wear. It saves a lot of time.

Remember to also take time for yourself at least for 5 minutes everyday. STOP. BREATHE. And then paint your toenails. It takes patience and you can’t rush through it…or your toes come out looking all types of crazy and so will you.

Take your time and take time for you.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain . . .

Sun Taylor

In your headspace

 

After coming home from running errands, you walk into the house and there’s the kitchen: dishes in the sink, pots and pans on the stove, kids still in pajamas. In your head you think, “I can’t believe this; it’s been three hours since I left and this place still looks like this?”

You’re getting ready for bed and start to wind down for the evening. Just as you’re about to lay back and relax, your significant other wants to run down a list of things that need to get done TOMORROW. You sit back thinking, “Really? We’re talking about this now?”

And last, you get a cryptic text message you can’t decipher and your brain freezes. Your immediate thought: “Is it me or does this sound a little off.” But you proceed to try and understand and then it goes south very quickly. Now, it’s a text message war.

Welcome to life and how we ALL have various headspaces. These are scenarios I’ve encountered (or put my dear husband through) as I continue to learn and define headspace. More on that later.

A couple of months back when I started this blog and up until recent conversations with dear friends (shout out to L. Daley and T. Conley- Ziyad!), we talked about our own headspace and the headspace of others.

We all have ideas as to how we think things should be and how others should think; but does that ever really work out? Nope.

Now, my definition of headspace – a frame of mind and how you individually think about things based upon your experiences. And because we all have different experiences, understanding headspace is accepting our differences.  

Back to those scenarios in the beginning.

Lesson one with kitchen mission: Cleaning and attempting to be organized is my thing. And even more now with keeping up three kids. But that’s me. Not everyone is in this same headspace and I’m learning to be fine with it.

Lesson two with to-do lists: Everyone does things on their time with a certain priority. Putting an immediate time stamp may not be the best way to go about it. Back up wifey (and hubby); you don’t live in the same headspace as your spouse. Figure out a way to compromise.

Lesson three with texting:  I am still working on this. I can’t even begin to tell you where my headspace is when it comes to this at times. But I can say that picking up the phone when you can’t decipher the message can get you in the right headspace.

So get your mind right and remember: headspace is not about being right or someone else being wrong; it’s about understanding the differences in our head.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain . . .

Sun Taylor

Imagine that

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” ~Nelson Mandela

Are you living the life you imagined?  Maybe, maybe not. Imagining the life and living that life are two separate things. We all have dreams and aspirations as to what we would LIKE… and then there’s reality.

My current reality – I’m home with two of my kids, working on getting more clients, attempting to help my husband with our barber shop, and running the household on practically coffee fumes. Period.

My imaginative life – A kick butt PR consultant, working at home with good paying clients which afford me the opportunity to travel every once in a while (nationally and internationally), and do what I want financially; I’d also like to still be with my family whenever: like making those mid-day school performances and having lunch with my husband on a Wednesday, on my own time. I am not asking for much, right? LOL

This is where imagination has to take over reality if I want to fulfill what I believe God intended for me. But how do you do it? One day at a time. In order to really get this done, here are some of my thoughts on getting to the imaginative:

  1. Baby Steps
    We have all heard it, but do we do it? I see my daughter taking baby steps every day and she just keeps going. We have to continue to put one foot in front of other if we’re going to live what we imagined.
  2. Get Back Up
    Yes, “we fall down, but we get up (in my Donnie McClurkin voice). If it’s in your imagination, no one said it was going to be easy. Get your “arse” back up please. No excuses. Everyone has fallen, but the one’s that get back up. . . they live the life.
  3. The Squad
    I can’t stress this enough. My squad is supreme. When I feel like I’m off course, I have to call them. But not just the cheerleaders, the one’s that also tell me my “ish” stinks and I need to get it together. . . now.
  4. Ummm…No
    I recently talked about “no” and have learned a lot about this while being home. “No” it just might not happen today, or “no” I have to pass on that. The “no” gets me to what is really important; like focusing on the “yes” and moving closer to what I imagine for myself. 
  5. Being Honest
    As the saying goes, “honesty is the best policy.” Are you honest with yourself and what you’re truly capable of? I battle this constantly with self doubt. We are capable of so much more, but we stop at what’s easy. If it’s easy, it’s not imaginative.

Doing what is required is basic. But doing what’s required and then some, is when the life we imagined comes to fruition. Don’t settle for what you think you can do; go for what you think you can’t.

Imagine that.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain. . .

Sun Taylor

 

 

2016 Face Off

Let’s face it: 2016 was a humdinger. There were several life altering events that taught me a lot about myself. Luckily, my tribe held me up very high because there were moments when I wanted to give up and give in.

From a job not being what I anticipated, restarting my business, going in for emergency gall bladder surgery, etc., etc. –  I had not planned for several “lessons” in 2016.

And then there was the craziness with African American males and injustice, bombings, the election (don’t get me started) and then we lost several icons, even as the year is ending. Huhhh.

The best way I made it through – with my face. When you “fix your face,” it gets your mind right. I’m sure my kids agree.

So . . . here are my 2016 faces with the lessons attached:

January – It may be cold outside, but no need to show a mean face in spite of how others may be treating you. Continue to smile – it makes people nervous and it will warm you from within.

February – Yes, it’s the month of love. Show your kissy face because everyone loves to be kissed. It also helps with wrinkles and shows off that beautiful red lipstick you like. Blow them a kiss and sashay away.

March/April – Spring has sprung.  Get out of your funk and smell the darn roses. Put on your enthusiastic face and cute shades – but show no shade. They’re not worth it and you’ll be ai-ight!

May – Have the look of “MAY I help you?” It’s the season of weddings, graduations, and whatever else. Everyone needs help – so grit and grin. It not worth the argument because you’ve already won by keeping your cool. Keep it movin’.

June – Summer is getting ready to start. You should have a big smile. And give someone a hug for that matter. The summer is too short and hot- don’t “sweat” the small stuff boo. Get your sunblock and enjoy what’s in front of you.

July/August – It’s hotter than. . .and school will start soon for the kids. Wait, did you say kids and school? Yes! Smile BIG time. You will soon get your time back; well maybe not. (confused face).

September – The summer is ending and fall is beginning. It’s a change in seasons and worth a reflective look on how you have changed thus far. Be encouraged and show a face of gratitude. Seasons are a good thing.

October – Refer to January. It may be getting cold again but stay warm by smiling no matter what the odds look like. Have the faith and determination and show it through your actions. You got this.

November/December – The end of 2016 is coming. Be grateful for all the blessings this year – because it could have been worse. Lift your face, say “thank you,” and then close you eyes and pray for an even better 2017.

This was my year and I remain thankful for the faces and lessons. Be happy with where you have come from, where you are at, where you are going, and put on your face accordingly.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain…

Sun Taylor

Happy New Year!

 

 

Bridges to Birmingham

Sweet home Alabama
Where the skies are so blue
Sweet home Alabama
Lord, I’m coming home to you

So you take a road trip with family and arrive in Birmingham, Alabama where some of your roots began. Approaching the house, you think to yourself “this is really happening.”

As I walk into the living room the history lesson begins. Several pictures of second and third cousins and other family- I can’t keep up. Immediately I am confused, but for a good reason. I was finally learning some of my history.

With the blink of an eye, I hear myself (and other family) in my new found family as they introduce themselves and share stories. From the way they talk and walk to how they think and look; it all comes together and I’m taking it in.

Go back a few decades and the woman and story I’m mesmerized by is Mrs. Julia Bridges. This was my great, great grandmother; she just seemed regal with a no nonsense type of attitude – hmmm, that no nonsense sounds familiar :o).

Julia and her husband were slaves – no surprise here. Mr. Bridges killed his slave owner and that ended the story of these two “living happily ever after.” He had to go into hiding (of course he did), which I imagine happened to several other families during this time. Julia was left by herself with her family but persevered.

I honestly think I would have given up during this time, but now realize where my strength comes from. This story was within my own bloodline. It gets tough out there but this made me really think about what’s unbearable.

The eye opening moment was when I heard my cousin say, “We have been oppressed, depressed, compressed, and redressed. We can handle anything.”

And there you have it. Your history is rich and strong . . . learn it and don’t take it for granted. You can handle it Sun Taylor because Julia Bridges was able to.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain.

Sun Taylor