Reflections, Uncategorized

Take Charge ⚡️

Good morning sunshines,

How does it make you feel to read that in the morning? Does it make you feel optimistic, and put a smile on your face? Or does it make you want to roll your eyes, because you haven’t had your coffee yet? It’s all about perspective. You decide on how you want to read this message.

Photo Edit by Jesse Soto from Jexse Studios

The older I get the more I have learned about myself. About who I want around me, the energy and vibes that it gives me being around certain people. Happiness is a choice. That sentence is a common topic I have been reading, and hearing about. “Happiness is a choice”, it stuck to me. Now I can’t get that sentence out of my head. How do you choose to be happy? I have recently learned that the answer is, changing myself then my environment.

The first step for me taking charge of my life, and the energy around me was to evaluate my situation. Before I could work on myself, I needed to know what were the problems I would have to solve. I asked myself the following questions, “Why am I feeling how I’m feeling?”, “What can I do to change it?”, “Who is going to stop me?”, and most importantly “How am I going to change it?”.

For the last couple of months, some of you probably have noticed my online presence hasn’t been as active as it used to be. The truth is, I wasn’t feeling like myself. I was an emotional rollercoaster, and I still feel like I’m getting myself together. Fellas y’all might not get me on this one, but Ladies you will. See, I was on the pill, and I didn’t expect it would have all the side effects on me that I thought it would. All I heard when I got on it was, “it will clear acne, and reduce periods” as a woman it was all I needed to hear to get on it. Unfortunately, thats not how it went down for me. (Disclaimer: not everyone has the same side effects as me please consult with your doctor as I’m not yours).

Instead, I gained weight, became self-conscience, and my hormones caused my emotions to be a hot mess. I realized that I wasn’t acting like myself. At moments I would even think to myself, “Why am I feeling like this?”, and “Why can’t I stop crying?”. The moment I answered those questions I knew I had to take action. For my own health. Not only did I decide to get off the pill, but that day I also chose to be happy. I decided that I don’t ever want to feel that way again, and won’t let anything or anyone take that from me.

Once you take charge of your situation everything falls into place. You’ll start tackling your goals, and getting over fears/doubts. I set a goal for myself this year, I have been putting off for the longest! You’re going to laugh when I tell you what it is, to ride a bike!! An actual bike, not a spinning class one. I used to ride them all the time as a kid, but as an adult I lost practice. It was like starting all over. I even bought a bike, so that I could force myself to riding one more often. Life is short, and I told myself I’m not ready to leave this planet until I can ride a bike around my city (OK,OK,OK, maybe just like a critical mass or something). After writing all my goals down from biggest to smallest ( it’s easier for me to write my big goals first), I realized something. The people around you matter, their vibes when you tell them about your dreams/goals/problems matters. We hate to admit it, but other people’s reaction to us effects us.

The truth is that as much as we would like to, we can’t change other people. We can’t make them see the world in a way we do, because they are living in their own world. In their world, they probably view us as not understanding them either. Which is why it is wise to communicate with people, especially those we love. We might not see eye to eye often, but if you chose to have any type of relationship with someone (whether it’s friends, co-workers, family, etc.) empathy and communication are required. I one time read somewhere that, you should not allow yourself to be an emotional garbage can. That means, someone who gets all the negative emotions poured on them by everyone.

Eventually, you will be doing the same to other people and it will be a domino effect. I’m not telling you to stop talking to people about what is going on in your life whether it’s good or bad, but what I am telling you is that you should also ask them about their good/bad too. There aren’t any one way streets in healthy relationships. I am blessed enough to surrounded by a great support system. When I told them what was going on in my life, not only did they listen, but they were quick to make a plan to help me out. They didn’t even ASK! They were just waiting for me to communicate with them on what was going on.

I was the person stopping myself from getting better. That was something hard for me to admit. I thought I could handle everything on my own, and that no one would notice what was going on inside. I let go of myself, and started to distance myself from people even if they were right there in front of me. I was too busy in my own head trying to figure myself out. I had stopped going to the gym, because I was self-conscience and mentally exhausted from overthinking. Which led to more weight gain! Reading that sounds silly to me now, but I had trapped myself in my own bad thoughts.

When I decided to take charge of my life again, I started to think of the question “how?”. How am I going fix this? I already figured out the problems, so now it was time to think of my solutions. It was like being in elementary school working on a science project, but this time my life was the project.

Weight gain? Go to the gym and have a balanced diet.

Negative minset? Change the books, music, podcasts, shows, and the people that surround you.

Soul is hungry? Go to church, read the Bible,meditate, or travel. Even helping others feeds the soul! Go to lunch with those who inspire you, and feed off of each other. Whatever works for you.

Who is going to stop me? NO ONE! the only person that can sabotage your plans is yourself.

There are many things in life we cannot control, but the one thing we can control is ourselves. How we react in our circumstances, and what we choose to do with our problems. What are you going to do today to get you closer to where you want to be in life? Whether it’s emotional, physical, or spiritual.


I know this post was way more personal than some of my other posts, but writing to me isn’t just something I do because it’s trending. Writing for me is therapy, and if someone out there is going through something similar I want you to know that you’re not alone, and we’ll get through it together 🙂 I’m still on my path, and don’t worry I’ll stay posted.

Until next time,

Jen

(I think after this post y’all know me well enough to call me that)

Reflections, Shop Local, Uncategorized

Spring Cleaning Life

Spring is known for the season for blooming flowers, and cleaning (hence the term “spring cleaning”). If you are Catholic, it’s also around/during lent. Forget starting New Years resolutions, this is the perfect time to bloom your ideas and projects. Usually, people give up something for lent that is hard for them to give up for the next 40 days leading up to Easter. Last year, I gave up meat for the full 40 days. It was tough, and decided not to do that one again. If you don’t do lent, that’s fine you can still use spring as a way to get rid of the negative, and bring out the positive vibes.

Instead of giving up something this year, I decided to add good habits to my life for the next 40 days. Good habits that are hard for me to keep up with, and would require some kind of time sacrifice. I don’t know about y’all, but me personally the hardest thing for me to give is my time (even giving myself time). I’m considering that starting these good habits will be a type of “spring cleaning” of my life. Also, one lent two years ago I gave up social media, and came back 40 days later with this blog.

This spring means business for me. I’m going all in. Like I said, instead of giving up something to eat I’m going to add these positive habits in to my routine for the next 40 days and hopefully build a habit enough to keep it for the rest of the year.

Here is my list of good habits I’m adding:

-Workout 5x a week (something that does my body good, but requires me to make time for it. Usually after work I’m exhausted, and all I want to do is sleep.)

-Read 10 pages on a book everyday

-Do a blog post once a week.

I’m looking forward to adding these few positive habits to my everyday life. I know in the long run will become long term positive outcomes.

Here are some ideas of things you can add to your spring:

    -Surround yourself with positive people
    -Do random acts of kindness
    -Tell people you care about you love them more often (life is short)

What positive habits are you adding to your life this spring? Let me know comment below.

    I hope to hear from y’all soon,

    Jenny

    P.S- let me know of anything you would like for me to post about.


    These photographers would not be this beautiful without the following people feel free to follow them on social media:

    Location-@alchemysalonhouston

    Florals- @rootedranchflorist

    Hair- @mqdesigns_

    MUA- @touchofartistrymakeup

    Photographer- @jexsestudios

    Thank you

    Travel + Leisure

    Travel Thursday: Part I- Venezia

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    Ciao, and Welcome to Travel Thursday! Is that a thing already? If not, it is now. As some of you may now know I went on my first trip to Europe, and my first stop (if you haven’t guessed by now) was Venezia (also known as Venice, Italy). Since I was a little girl I’ve always wanted to go to Italy, but never imagined I would ever really be THERE. My first day in Venice I was just taking everything in. Trying to absorb everything I saw, heard, and use all my senses to record the moments in my memory (also into my camera). Now, let me tell you about some of the highlights of the trip through my eyes.

     

    Il Cibo– The Food

    The most important sense to use in Venice is TASTE. Oh, the fun I had using that one! This is not the time, or place for a low carb diet. To quote Drake, “YOLO”. I rather leave this earth knowing that I have tasted amazing (and some interesting) food than to be dwelling in my afterlife about the food I didn’t get to eat, or the wine I didn’t drink. Did I mention there was gelato, and cannoli’s? If you try gelato in Italy, the one back home will just taste like melted ice cream in comparison. I was fortunate enough to have a tour guide to give good suggestions on where to eat, and at times when those places were closed you just have to go based on instinct. A tip on knowing if the place is good to eat, see how many people are sitting down to eat there. Also, try to spot locals in the crowd of people. The reason being, any good restaurant always has customers. Also, if there are locals they know what’s up on food in their town. You don’t want a stomach situation on a trip, because you want to enjoy the trip.

    L’arte– The Art

    The art of Venetian glass, this takes me back again to my childhood. When Mr.Rogers would put a video on of how things are made, and the trolly would pass by. Anyways, It was awesome to see this in person. To see someone create art like second nature, just shows you it is in their blood. In this case, at the Murano Glass Factory in the Galleria San Marco beautiful glass work is made out of Venetian glass. The certified kind, because believe it or not they have certificates and logos to show the real from the fake. They make anything from chandeliers to cute earrings out of glass.

    “People rarely tell the truth but give them a mask and…they will”, is what it says on their business card. I love it! At Schegge Art & Crafts, the owner of the store was greeting us and welcoming us in. She was very passionate in telling us about how painting masks is something that is passed down generations in her family. She painted all of the paper masks you see in the pictures above. Each one is unique, and a work of art. If you are ever in Venice, you have to go see for yourself.

    Il Luogo– The Place

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    Walking around Venice was even more beautiful than I would have imagined it to be. It looked like straight out of a story book. The architecture is amazing. I have been to many places that I have seen on TV, just to get to the actual place and be disappointed. They were just illusions created on sets or by green screens. Not Venice though, Venice looked more beautiful than I imagined. The second day there it was not dry, and it might have been a little unexpected for me. There were high tides which caused it to flood in Venice. As someone who lives in a city that floods, it amazed me with how relaxed and calm everyone in Venice is when this happens.

    They just put on their rain boots, and keep moving forward. It also helps that their way of transportation are boats. Which reminds me of one more highlight I have to show you before I end this post…

    The Gondolas

    When in Venice, get on the boat. Enjoy the ride, and the good views. I am 100% sure that this is not even close to summing up my trip, but as always…if you want to know more or have any questions you can ask below on the comments. Ciao Ciao!!

    Reflections, Travel + Leisure, Uncategorized

    Mis Raíces 🌳

    September is Hispanic Heritage month, so I thought what better time to show y’all my beautiful motherland than now. I’ve always been curious of where I’m from…I know where I was born, and I know where my parents were born. I just wanted to know where my ancestors before them were from, and how did they get here? Now that there are so many DNA ancestry tests available, I decided to take one and find out.

    I feel that the picture above is a good description of why I have such a blend of different cultures in my DNA. I am 48% European, and 41.2% Native American. I found out that I have DNA from countries I didn’t even expect! It was very awesome to find out that I am .7% Italian, and that my Maternal Lineage comes from Siberia. That would explain why I’ve always been fascinated with the culture in those countries. The picture above was taken in front of the church El Rosario. It shows Christopher Columbus (most likely why I have European ancestors), and Martyrs/Saints that helped Native Americans in the country during the time of Conquistadores. They also brought Catholicism with them.

    The church above is called El Rosario it is located in the department La Libertad in San Salvador, El Salvador. Pictures don’t do it justice. The way the light hits the stained glass windows is breathtaking. It creates a beautiful rainbow inside the church. Filing it with warmth.

    El Salvador is a country rich in European, but mainly Spaniard culture. El Salvador declared it’s independence from Spain on September 15th of 1821. When you walk around and take in the architecture you can see the influence Spain had in El Salvador during colonization. This statue is in El Parque La Libertad, and it represents what it means. If you haven’t guessed by now “Libertad”, means liberty.  It’s a beautiful monument to look at. Theres just a certain type of way it makes you feel when, you stare at something that has such great meaning.

    The part on my ancestry test that put a big smile on my face, was when I saw that 38.4% of what I have as Native American is from El Salvador. I’ve always been proud of my roots, and thought of my parents country just as my own. I spent as many childhood summers there as I have spent in Houston as an Adult. There is so much greenery, and just such a more beautiful way of life. People appreciate the little moments in life, and take every good moment in to make it through the tough moments. They have such a contagious positive attitude, and their vibes make you believe in yourself more. These are all thoughts that go through my mind as I stare at this beautiful waterfall in Perquìn with my family around me.

    If you find yourself in Perquín, because you wanted to chase waterfalls. Then, I suggest you stop by El Museo de la Revolución. Where you will get educated on the civil war that was not that long ago. El Salvador’s civil war did not end until the 90’s. The entry is inexpensive. There is a tour guide that will tell you the whole history, and all you do is leave a tip.

    Monseñor Romero is the most iconic, and respected in El Salvador’s history. Next month he will be named a saint by the Catholic Church. Learn more about him when you visit the museum, or really anywhere you go in El Salvador someone will be more happy to tell you the impact he’s made to the country. El Salvador is a beautiful country filled with its history, and I thought I would share a few of its light since mostly what is shown to the world is the dark.

    La Catedral de Santa Ana speaks for itself. I’m a sucker for architecture, and it turns out we were there right when the the celebration for St. Anne (the patron Saint) was about to start. There is a festival, the streets are filled with people selling all types of food, souvenirs, and there’s local entertainment. These are just a few of the things you can find in my parents country, that is also very much my country. Amo a El Salvador como las Pupusas aman a el curtido 🇸🇻💕

    Reflections, Uncategorized

    Don’t Fret

    DSC03586Every once in a while, you get moments in your life where everything is on a roll. It seems like your stars are aligned and the blessings are piling up. When you feed more positive vibes to it, you notice everything is going better (bigger blessings). Then, you get a little voice in your head (negative thoughts/people/situations). Don’t fret.

    I get it, it’s hard. They say, “it’s all on YOU”, and “it’s your mindset”. Take control of it. It’s so easy to say, but the truth is…just like all great things in life it takes time. Shit, I’M still working on it. I have gotten to that point where I’m super positive, and things are going SO great that I decide to spread that positivity to others BUT they aren’t ready. They have a comeback to everything, as to why everything you are suggesting wouldn’t work, to what they’ve tried. Don’t let it stop you. Keep your head and vibes up.

    “Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” ~Dalai Lama

    Yes, some might say they aren’t being pessimists, but that they are being realist. That can be true, and trying to change someone’s mind who is determined on sticking to their mindset is only going to drain your battery. Maybe they are just going through a rough patch, and don’t want to hear it. Just let them be. Know this, the positive energy you have in YOU should not stop because of this. Happiness comes from within, and although the mood and circumstances of those we love can change our mood (temporarily) we can’t let that kill our entire vibe.

    It took me a VERY long time to even get to a point where I can talk about positivity, motivation, and being inspired again. It took this blog, a detox, and having an inner conversation with myself to get to this point again. I’m not letting anything or anyone stop that from rolling. During lent last year, I gave up social media and read many books about “happiness”. One stood out called, “The book of JOY”. In one of the of the chapters called “Nothing Beautiful Comes Without Suffering”,  the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu talk about “how we face the negative in our lives is what determines the kind of person we become”, and that spoke to me.

    I’m not saying give up on people, or cut them out of your life. I’m saying, don’t let a series of negative thoughts/circumstances/comments dictate your future/thoughts/moods. Use those as lessons to create something beautiful. Be like the lotus flower that grows in the mud, or like Tu Pac would say, “the rose that grew from concrete”.

    What is stopping you today? See you next week.

    Love,

     

    Jenny