Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Comfortable In My Own Skin

I have always had body issues ever since I can remember. I have never been skinny even as an adult. My weight has always fluctuated partially to bad habits, not enough exercise and skipping meals. I've never wanted to be super skinny, maybe just a thinner version of myself. It wasn't until I turned 27, that I really started to embrace my body. And for once I began to feel comfortable in my own skin. I don't remember what the pivotal moment was. I just remember I stopped being so hard on myself about trying to be a certain size or achieve a certain weight. For so long I had fought with my self confidence and only saw myself as how I compared to others. 

Even at the age of 32, I still fluctuate with my weight and I will probably always be nagging over those 20lbs. But I don't let myself get down about it. I just work a little harder and eat smarter if I don't like what I see in the mirror. I will never be skinny by any means. Personally, I just don't want to be that way. I like having curves, boobs and a booty. I ultimately just want to be healthy. I don't want to be defined by a number but rather how I feel in my own skin.

It's refreshing to see more and more women embracing their bodies and for women of all sizes being accepted more now than ever. Amy Schumer is known as being the funny girl. But she is serious when it comes to owning her body weight and telling everyone just what she thinks if they have a problem with it. I mean for a plus size model like Ashley Graham to walk in New York Fashion Week. That is a game changer in the fashion industry. It opens up so many people to have a different outlook on what is to be considered a "normal body" in today's society. And it also shows that women can be beautiful at any size. I've always admired Christina Aguilera and her stance on body image. She makes no apologies and owns her flaws. I think that is inspiring for us as women to see celebrities be just like us and struggle with the same issues we have.  

You are NOT your weight. You are beautiful no matter what size you are.  And only once you truly begin to realize that will you learn to love yourself even more. Don't let society, family, friends or even your own insecurities dictate how you perceive yourself. Be happy. Be healthy. And love your body, flaws and all!

XO, Rae

Friday, September 25, 2015

It's Not Me, It's You

Mandy Hale, otherwise known as The Single Women posted this quote the other day on her FB page. (Go follow her, seriously) It was just too good not to share. My last serious relationship was one that took me awhile to get over. The love was always there between us but unfortunately he wasn't always there. I wanted to hold on so bad that I ultimately lost myself in the process. I'm sure some of you can relate to having that one relationship that you wish you could go back and tell yourself to run! Although the relationship has been over for some time now, when I read this quote it resonated with me. I mean this isn't a new concept but, something about seeing the words and reading it out loud hit me hard. I can remember trying to justify why he did what he did in our relationship. Why he stepped out. Why he made me feel like it was me. Why he couldn't commit. And there I would be trying to make it all sound less shitty by pointing out all of my imperfections in the relationship and taking some of the blame. When here is the simple truth. He couldn't offer me what I deserved in a relationship. We tried so many times to put the pieces back together that I lost count. And even though I have moved on, I wish I would have realized sooner that I wasn't asking for too much in our relationship. It's sad that we can allow someone to make us feel as if we are asking for too much so we start to settle for what they can actually offer us and make excuses for the rest. I know deep down I always knew he wouldn't be the one to give me what I needed or deserved, but sometimes it helps to see it in bold letters. We are all worthy of having the right person who can give us everything we deserve and more without feeling as if we are asking for too much. I'm not giving up and neither should you. 

XO, Rae

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

3 Apps You Need In Your Life!

Life is busy and sometimes we need the help of life's simple pleasures also known as apps from the app store. It is often necessary  to save time in our hectic day and stay productive on the go. So here are 3 apps that I can't live without and neither should YOU. 

1. EVER NOTE- You can use this app for so many things. Create notes and checklists on the go, store snap shots of business cards, save articles to read later and you can access everything from multiple devices. I can quickly make my 'to do' list for the day, a grocery list and set reminders for my day. If your looking for a way to stay organized, you need this app. I can't get through my day without it!

2. INK- I LOVE this app because I can easily send personalized greeting cards to friends and family straight from my phone. I seriously use it all the time! The app offers a ton of options for different types of cards and you can even upload photos from your phone to be added. And the best part is that it only cost $1.99. Cheaper than a store bought card and it usually ships within 3-5 business days. I promise you will love it too!

3. NYC Way- If you live in New York or if you're planning to visit the City, you will definitely want to get this app! This app is like having multiple apps all in one. It includes everything from nearby places with Wi-Fi, events in the city, Subway maps, Yoga studios, Broadway Shows and even has the lighting schedule for the Empire State Building. This app has been a great way for me to get more familiar with New York City and is my go-to when friends & family visit from out of town.

DOWNLOAD these apps and get on with your busy day! 

XO, Rae

NYC Living: Dinner at PRUNE

New York is a food city, no doubt. With so many restaurants, it is often hard to choose, but there are some that are like none other. Living with a foodie, my best friend has been dying to go to PRUNE. On Sunday, we finally had the experience of dinning at PRUNE for dinner. Located in the East Village, this popular restaurant is known for it's amazing Chef Gabrielle Hamilton. She is also an author of a New York Times Best Seller book called 'Blood, Bones and Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef'. We were lucky enough to have the first seating for dinner at 5:30pm. When we arrived I was able to capture a rare moment of the restaurant completely empty. There is often a line outside to get in especially for brunch. Although the restaurant is small in size, the experience is anything but. And to make the night even more complete, we spotted Chef Gabrielle Hamilton walking by the restaurant with boxes in tote. Below are some of the amazing dishes we devoured during our meal. Cocktails were amazing as well. Can't wait to visit again soon for brunch. I definitely recommend PRUNE if your willing to spend a bit on delicious good quality food. 

Featured Appetizer: Fried Oysters with house tarter sauce

Halibut with cherry tomatoes in a spicy tomato broth

Grilled Broccoli, chili butter, pecorino 

Charred Beef Ribs with anchovy butter

'Straw and Hay' Pasta with green tomato-chicken liver sauce

Dessert: Summer Pudding


XO, Rae

Thursday, September 3, 2015

NYC Summer Must See & Do

*All Photos are original and personally taken by Rae

Summertime sadness is quickly approaching as we will soon have to say goodbye to tan lines, beach days, outdoor drinking and shorts & tank tops. But before you pack up your swimsuits and replace them with sweaters, there is still time to enjoy some amazing things in New York City. Being that this is my first Summer in New York City, I wanted to take advantage of everything that the city has to offer. And I have to say there is plenty to keep you busy all Summer long. I wanted to share some of my favorites...so I compiled a list. Your welcome :)

The High Line

The High Line is an elevated public park that is actually built on an old freight rail line located in the Meat Packing district. It's kinda of like an adult playground with lots seating and luscious landscape. There is even a splash pad to cool off your feet that you can walk through along a section of the park. Great for reading a book or just relaxing and bathing in the sun. Often you can find events, public art and food and drink vendors along the High Line. Also, a plus is that Chelsea Market is near by. Chelsea Market is an indoor food hall including a mix of different restaurants, pop up shops and local artists. Perfect way to spend a Summer afternoon.

Jones Beach

Summer would not be complete without a trip to the beach. Jones Beach is located on the south shore of Long Island. The beach is near a boardwalk where you can grab a bite or shop at one of the local shops. Also near by is the Nikon at Jones Beach Theater. After a day at the beach you can keep the party going and attend a concert. Click here for more details on fees and access to the beach as well as beach rentals. Grab your swimsuit, pack up the cooler and head out to Long Island for a Beach day.

On Friday and Saturday's from 5pm-8pm The Met Museum rooftop turns into a social hour with signature cocktails, martinis and light snacks. Access is granted with a purchased Museum ticket. Luckily, The Met is pay as you wish. So you can get in for the less expensive ticket price which is $12.95. There is no other rooftop bar that will give you access to such breathtaking panoramic views of the NYC skyline. Great for meeting up with friends and enjoying a few drinks to start off the weekend. You have never seen Central Park or the city quite like this!

Every Thursday from 12:30pm-1:30pm July-August you have a chance to see a sneak peak of on and off Broadway shows courtesy of Broadway In Bryant Park. There is often free giveaways and if you arrive early you can catch the warm up performances. Seats fill up quickly and are first come first serve. Grab a snack and enjoy the show!

Ice Cream Spots

These are not your ordinary Ice Cream shops. A favorite of mine is BIG GAY ICE CREAM, this place is all about unicorns and funky ice cream combinations. And Mister Softee is a local favorite, you can find this gem of an ice cream truck driving around all over Manhattan. Nothing is better than delicious cold ice cream when your trying to beat the Summer heat. For more local ice cream spots, click here for these listed by neighborhood. 

Thanks to UNIQLO every FRIDAY MoMA is FREE from 4pm-8pm. 
Free admission includes special exhibits also. Get there early because the line tends to wrap around the building. And be prepared to be in a crowd of art lovers. Great way to spend an evening with a friend or a date while you gaze away at art. 

Share your favorite Summer things to do in NYC in the comments below. 

XO, Rae

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

New Beginnings

Today is the start of a new month and a new season is right around the corner. It seems like the perfect time for new beginnings. I have been embarking on a new journey since moving to New York almost a year ago. And now that I am currently changing careers, I find myself embarking on yet another new beginning. But that's the beauty in life, you can decide how and when you want your new beginning to be. I know often it is not easy to make a life change no matter what it is. As women, we struggle to find the balance in life and also make time for ourselves. We often think "why can't I have my dream life"? Well the truth is, you can. You can choose at anytime to be who you want to be. You can seek out that new job or follow your dreams and be your own boss. You can loose that 20 lbs. you've been frustrated over.  And you can let go of that relationship that has been holding you back. All of these things are possible. You just have to decide that you want it bad enough. I know, it's not as easy as it sounds. I struggle with this myself and often have to remind myself to not look back but to look forward. There are moments I want to give up because it seems impossible. Every day is not perfect and there are still days I question everything. But I know that in the end I will regret it if I don't at least try. So with a new month ahead, I am reminded of all the possibilities. And continue to set new goals to keep myself motivated. Give yourself the chance to prove to yourself that you can do anything you set your mind to. YOU CAN DO IT! 

XO, Rae