Dream Big & Buy The Shoes: April 2015

April 30, 2015

You Are Beautiful: Above All

I've talked about comparison here before. I struggle with it, and sometimes it seems to consume me. If I get too deep in to thinking about things I tend to find myself depressed.

 
image via

I think we all compare. Jobs, houses, relationships, shoes, bags...they're all things to size up and they are different to each one of us. Recently I've been comparing this space of mine here on the Internet.I've mentioned how many amazing relationships and opportunities this hobby has brought meWhen I started blogging I would have never guessed it would bring me the happiness that it does.  Lately it has me in a different frame of mind though. Is it time consuming? Yes. It is stressful? Sure is. You see, I'm a  perfectionist by nature. I'm extremely organized and obsessive sometimes to a fault. Years ago I was diagnosed with anxiety and mild OCD, and there are times that I simply can't control it.There's certain triggers that bring out my anxiety and instances where my OCD kicks in...some of them are social settings, other times it's the fact that I can't control situations. 

Other blogs have inspired me...they gave me the courage to start one of my own, they give me creative fuel, they make me think about things I may not normally wonder and I am intrigued daily by the writers behind them. 
I keep thinking about why I don't have a newsletter, a blog series, better pictures, amazing ideas, more sponsorship opportunities, etc..etc... I compare my blog to others so much lately that it has me in  negative funk. I get so deep in thought about why why why that I'm not focusing on the how, when , where, or what. 
How can I grow? When will I take the time to put to use what I've read? Where will my blog be in 2 years? What brought me here in the first place?

The inspiration that's out there can be incredibly moving and it can also be a little dangerous. I'm not quite sure why I've been feeling this way lately, but it's not healthy. I was in one of my moods the other day and I had to stop myself from continuing any further with the pessimism. Comparison is the thief of joy. Until a few days ago I hadn't really thought about that quote, but that Roosevelt was one smart man. 

I'm here to tell you that your blog may not be perfect, but it's YOURS. Your hair may be out of place, but you're BEAUTIFUL. You may not have the career you want at the moment, but you are SMART. Quit comparing yours with the neighbors. Look in the mirror at what's in front of you and own it. Above it all, You Are Beautiful and that's why there's only one you. 

If I had a slower paced job, worked from home, didn't have a stepson, or wasn't planning a wedding....I may have the time I'm seeking to do more fun things with this space. For now, I'm a manager with an amazing little guy I'm helping raise and planning the wedding of our dreams with my fiance. Those things make me happy, and so does this blog...even with all it's little imperfections.

Join Lauren and I for the next linkup May 14th. Thank you for your constant support. 




You Are Beautiful

April 29, 2015

Las Vegas Vacation Recap: Part 3

The time has come...the Las Vegas vacation recaps are coming to an end. It's time to show you what we were up to the last few days of our trip and everything in between the Britney show.




The most exciting part of day three involved meeting Lauren from Lot 48. I couldn't believe that timing worked out and my "You Are Beautiful" co-host was in town the same weekend. Lauren was just as sweet as I expected and it was so much fun getting to meet my first blogger friend in real life.



We did a lot of sightseeing, because it never gets old. The artwork, displays, and zany scenes in Vegas are ones I never get tired of. 


A trip to Sin City is never complete without a few pictures in front of the infamous sign. Last time we went, our pictures were taken at night and they didn't turn out so wonderful. This time, we were hot sweaty messes during the day so I'm not sure what's best.


A magnificent chocolate display at one of the sweets shops...I mean, that's pure heaven right there. I kind of wish I could climb in there and slide down the sculptures with the chocolate. YUM!




I think Aria is one of the prettiest hotels and I love the water display they have outside too. Bright colors make my heart so happy. I could sit and look at these kind of things all day long. Give me a drink, some people watching and the art...I'm set. 


So, that morning I was doing my usual scrolling through Instagram and saw a picture Sarah Jessica Parker posted of another fabulous pair of shoes. Of course I double tapped, liked the photo and moved on.
While in Aria we were on the upper level of the retail area and look down to see one of Sarah Jessica Parker's pop up shops right there below us. We stopped to take pictures and ooh and ahh over SJP's store. We were going to head down and go in the store, but since we were hot sweaty messes we didn't think it was okay.  I overheard a hotel worker tell a few girls "If you hurry you may catch her in the valet area" ...but I thought nothing of it and we continued to walk. Next thing you know we pass a sign that has Sarah on it with information that she was JUST doing a meet and greet in that very shop...FOR THREE HOURS.




I had tears in my eyes so big, I couldn't believe I had just scrolled through Instagram and not even read the caption stating she would be in Las Vegas that afternoon. I was so mad at myself and couldn't get over that I had the chance to meet her and missed it. Sarah Jessica Parker is my older generation Britney Spears and I just love her. She's effortless, chic, and classy...a true dream, and I missed her!

After battling through my sadness of not meeting SJP I needed something to cheer me up...cue the fountains at the Bellagio. Those will put a smile on your face no matter what. We just so happened to walk up when a new show was starting, and Frank Sinatra was playing.


You Tube copyright laws were not agreeing with me, so you can view a fun video of the Fountains at the Bellagio on my Facebook page here.

While watching the fountains we had a beautiful view across the street. I can't wait to see the real one someday, but for now this will do. 


If there's anything better than sunshine, palm trees and a beautiful fountain show it's a cupcake. A cupcake that comes out of an ATM. Yes, I got to visit the Sprinkles Cupcake ATM and it was every bit as fabulous as you can guess.



I'm not quite sure why there's not at least one of these in every city, but the happiness an ATM can bring to my day is immeasureable. Just look at how awesome this is...





I might add, this was my first time having a Sprinkles cupcake and it was delicious...more to come on that later. Hint...new blog series. 

Our last evening we decided to have a nice dinner at our hotel and take it easy because we were exhausted from walking all over the Strip all day. One last mistake we made was not going to 1Oak at The Mirage that night. Elisa had texted me the night before we left for our trip to inform me that Kourtney Kardashian was going to be there for her birthday party and we decided we were going. Chuck wasn't so fond of the idea and told me she would only show up for 5 minutes and it would be dumb. Our gondolier at The Venetian the first day told us that all the celebrities come in and wave and then leave, and the money spent was not worth it and we would probably be let down. We made the final decision to not go....and then woke up to pictures of her boyfriend Scott Dissick and Kourtney all over Instagram partying all night. Bummer...we not only missed SJP, but we missed Lord Dissick too. 


The final day we did a little more walking around. The pictures will explain...




Britney in the daylight looking over us on top of Planet Hollywood. Hi Brit!!!


Pretty palm trees and water at The Mirage...I was a little bummed we didn't get to see the volcanoes at dark....maybe next time.

Chuck and I realized when we were at The Mirage that there was a spot nearby where we had taken a picture on our trip four years ago. We went back to take a few more this time. You can see the normal version on my Instagram




We stopped at Caesar's Palace and spent a good amount of time walking around to even find our way in. The place is HUGE...of all the times I've been to Las Vegas I have never been in Caesar's. We didn't have a lot of time to look around but we grabbed some souveniers and took some pictures.




The last part of the day before heading to the airport was a fun one for Chuck. I had been wanting to surprise him with a drive in a fast car at a racetrack and while we were in Vegas I stumbled upon a great opportunity. I made a reservation for Chuck to drive a Ferrari and the description said he would be driving it for 20 minutes on The Strip. When we arrived that day, we found out they take the car out on the freeway, meaning we wouldn't get to watch. I was really bummed that I wouldn't get a chance to see Chuck drive or take action pictures, but the instructor was nice enough to capture the moment.




Chuck had a blast and said it was awesome, so that's all that matters. Well that, and that I won girlfriend of the year award. He chose a winner if you ask me. He drove this car over 100 miles an hour on the Vegas Freeway...sounds alright to me.

Vegas was such a good getaway and we had such an amazing time. Chuck and I had a blast with our friends and loved getting to escape together and unwind before the craziness of the wedding planning really begins. I can't wait for our next trip and to see and do even more awesome things on our next visit to Las Vegas.

Have you ever been to Vegas? What's your favorite thing to do if you've been there?





April 28, 2015

Blogger Men Tell All // April

You know what time it is...Chuck's favorite time of the month. At this point I don't think there's explanation needed. Let's get to it...Blogger Men Tell All. My two cents comments are in italics...because it's just necessary.




What is the last song you listened to?
Something from the Yelawolf CD since it just came out last Tuesday.
- The fact that he had to check his Spotify account to verify the spelling makes me believe I'm not missing much. 

What would you sing at karaoke night?
Anything by Dr. Dre or Eminem
-Chuck literally turns in to Dr. Dre when he raps anything. Unfortunately the last time he did karaoke and "sang" Dr. Dre he was reading the lyrics, as you would at karaoke....and it was bad. Next time he just needs to pretend he's in the driver seat, no lyrics needed...it's in his blood. 

Would you describe yourself as an introvert or an extrovert?
A little of both. Usually I'm a little reserved when I meet new people but once I'm comfortable I become pretty awesome.
-I would never use the word reserved to describe Chuck. This made me giggle inside. 

What is one thing you will never do again?
Go to Miami. Not even if there's a fire. I don't care if Deion Sanders and Elton John throw a benefit for some good cause...I'm not going.
-We went for the Superbowl for the Superbowl festivities with friends in 2010 and Chuck was disgusted by the crowds of people. He wasn't impressed with Miami in the least bit, or the Spanish bars I made him go to, or waiting in line to go to dinner. It's safe to say he will NEVER go back. This also makes me giggle. 

How do you think your blogger has benefited from blogging?
It has opened a lot of doors, introduced her to some new people and helped her by letting out her voice to the world.
-Well, someone has to listen to me ;)


Have a great day friends! Don't forget to link up your #YouAreBeautiful posts with Lauren and I this Thursday. You can learn  more about our community of self love and empowerment here



Becoming Adorrable







April 27, 2015

Las Vegas Vacation Recap: Part Two // It's Britney B!tch

The main reason we went to Las Vegas, besides a much needed getaway was to see the Queen, Miss Britney Jean Spears. If you know me at all, or have poked around on this blog you're well aware that she is my everything. You may need to bring yourself up to speed on this Britney issue and you can do that here.
If you missed Part 1 of my Vegas Vacation recap you can catch up pretty quick here.

When Britney announced her residency at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas I knew I had to get there at some point. I really wanted to go for my bachelorette party, but with families, work commitments, and other life things it became obvious that wasn't going to happen. I was okay with it, but knew I had to get there somehow.
Elisa was surprised with a trip and concert tickets for Valentine's Day & Chuck and I were ecstatic to be part of the fun. The four of us were ready to do Vegas, and definitely do Britney.

britney piece of me


We went to Britney's Friday night show so during the day we kept it low key by the pool. A few drinks were consumed and a selfie stick was ruined. In case you were wondering, they aren't waterproof and you shouldn't operate one under the influence.



Finally the evening came and I was more than ready to run in the Axis Theatre and get the show started. I didn't want to take any pictures out front just yet, because I wanted to get in, but not without my Britney cup first...duh.

  


We got to our seats and awaited Britney's entrance. At one point I got real mad because they had a countdown going on a giant screen and it was about 20 mintues behind when the show should have started...I seriously could not wait any longer than normal.  The only thing that made it better was the group of 20 girls in red  "Oops I Did It Again" suits....you go girls!! 
When it hit 9 pm giant letters B... R...started flashing up on the stage with pictures of Britney through the years. IT WAS TIME! Elisa and I had our heels off at this point and we were ready to dance. I started screaming with excitement as Brit made her entrance down to "Work Bitch."


I was screaming so loud and jumping up and down like a 16 year old crazy fangirl, and I would do it again in a heartbeat. She looked so good...nice and fit, her hair is short and perfect, oh Britney you're amazing. 
She went right in to Womanizer & 3 after, talking to us in the crowd and dancing her heart out on stage. She then slowed it down as she came  from the ceiling in angelic wings fluttering on to the next set. 



I had obviously already watched the E! Special "I Am Britney Jean" and saw pieces of the amazing set, but it was breathtaking in person. So many great graphics, bright colors and out of this world large pieces to make it all come together. 



The neon set was one of my favorites...I mean who doesn't like blacklight and neon?! I was kind of a freak during the entire show. I was beaming with a huge smile on my face, snapping pictures, taking videos, sending snapchats, jumping up and down, fist pumping and screaming.

As Circus, my favorite Britney song, came on, I hit my ultimate high. I couldn't believe we were actually in Las Vegas seeing my girl, it had been my dream for quite some time. I looked over at Chuck during random points when I was screaming my head off and he just looked back at me smiling, he gets me...it's awesome.









The show was 90 minutes long, and every second went by way too fast. We had known the setlist and listented the exact order of songs several times through already thanks to Elisa. Toxic was one of the hits in the last set and I captured a decent video for you to see. So as Crazy came on I got real sad.

 


Britney's energy was through the roof and her dance moves were on point. She rocked the entire show and it was so great to see her again. 





She ended the show with "Till The World Ends" and was the absolute cutest when she came up to the front of the stage and waved to all of us and thanking us in her adorable accent. Confetti fell from the ceiling and the crowd was going wild. I did not want her to leave that stage. I went and did it...I cried during that last song. Just look at her gettin it in and jammin out...Britney is back and she is making it happen in Las Vegas.





Even though I knew there was no encore, we stood there for a few minutes waiting for something. I don't think any of us wanted to leave. It was absolutely epic...Britney in Vegas....amazing!!!

We went out in to the lobby and took some pictures. My favorite was obviously the get up from her Circus video. Chuck was the best and snapped multiple pictures all over the place that night. 


After they had to kick us out of the theatre, we went to the Britney Store and dropped some loot on gear. I even found a second Britney cup that some silly person had left behind...thank you for that bonus, holla! 

The night before the show we had been in Planet Hollywood and asked multiple employees where the Britney elevators were, and all of them looked at us clueless. Turns out that they are right by the closest bathrooms on the casino floor by the theatre. We found them by mistake on our way to the bathrooms and obviously had a 20 minute photoshoot. Thanks again Chuck!!




Now, here comes the best part. I have to tell you that sometimes I get what I call my "lucky feelings". When I have this gut feeling I buy a scratch off lottery ticket and usually win anywhere from $10 to my highest amount of $50.
Well, a few days before we left I just had this feeling that something big was going to happen. We were going to see Britney somewhere on the Strip in Vegas or come across some backstage VIP passes. We were going to get lucky.

Well...we did. During our photoshoot none other than FELICIA came to get on an elevator. Elisa was first to spot her and screamed "FELICIAAAAA" and we all (well us girls) ran over to her. Chuck gathered our purses and bags off the floor and came over with us while we freaked out. He looked at her and said "Hi Felicia, I'm sorry I don't know you who are, but I'm Chuck." She was so sweet & said "Oh hi Chuck, nice to meet you, I'm Felicia." I could not get over her sweet Southern accent and how kind she was.



If you don't know who Felicia Culotta is, she is Britney's assistant. She currently runs the Meet & Greet portion of the show and has been with Britney from the start of her career and is actually her mom's best friend. We stood there and talked to her for abotu 20 minutes like we were old friends. Felicia answered all our questions about Brit and gave us a lot of information. Here's some of the inside scoop:
Britney has been extended an offer to stay in Las Vegas for her residency. She is very happy in Vegas, but there's a lot behind accepting the offer to continue the show...let's hope it works out.
Kevin Federline is a good dad. His new wife and Britney get along well and they are all in a good place.
Britney & Charlie are really happy and he is a great guy.
If the teacher in her video "Hit Me Baby One More Time" looks pretty familiar to the woman below, that's because it IS her...she confirmed it to us.
Britney does not primarily stay at Planet Hollywood while she is there...I won't tell where she does, you'll have to meet Felicia for yourself and ask her ;)



Meeting Felicia seriously made our night complete. She was as sweet as I imagine Britney would be. I only hope that she told Britney about us and how much we love her. 
If you can't meet Britney Spears...the next best thing is her life long assistant. 

Congratulations if you've made it this far, if so, you must be a true fan too. To recap the recap: Britney is still the Queen. You need to see her in Vegas. I will be back in 2016, but with a better strapless bra. The amount of times I had to put the girls back in place while dancing was completely unacceptable.
 If you're just not ready to be done with my Vegas Vacation recaps...either am I. The final moments will be up this week to finish out the fun. 

Until next time....Hit Me Baby One More Time...






April 23, 2015

Las Vegas Vacation Recap

As we all probably know,  last weekend we ventured to Las Vegas for a little getaway, revolving around the Britney Spears concert. It was a whirlwind of a weekend and every second was jam packed with fun. Shall we recap and relive the memories? Yes...yes we should.

Las Vegas Vacation

We stayed at the Stratosphere, which was brand new to me since I've never been there. We arrived in Vegas around 9:30 am on Thursday and checked our bags in to the hotel and hit the strip immediately. We walked from the Stratosphere down to the main area and started sightseeing. I won't bore you with the details...because we all know the best part about these posts is the pictures. 


Flowers at the Wynn...absolutely breathtaking. The colors and sunshine make me want to stay all day. I really could have sat there and admired them for the afternoon and been content. 


flowers at the wynn


wynn las vegas




The fact that all of these are fresh flowers makes me all sorts of heart-eyed emoji faced. How incredibly beautiful, right?!


palazzo hotel

There's that sunshine again...the temperatures were perfect during our visit. We spent time walking through the Palazzo and the Venetian and made a few fun stops on the way. 
Buddy from Cake Boss has a place in Las Vegas now which is pretty sweet. I snapped a picture at a good time because just a minute later there was a huge crowd gathered in front, I can't imagine what the bakery in NYC is like on a daily basis.

cake boss las vegas

strat las vegas

The Stratosphere was really cool and I'm glad we stayed there to experience somewhere new. The pool was alot of fun, and we got to go up in the tower for free so that was an added bonus. 


las vegas vacation

Elisa and I outside the Wynn on our way to Palazzo and the Venetian. It was still a little cool in the early afternoon, but the long sleeves came off  later. I'm so glad we got to take this trip together and see our girl Britney Spears. 

venetian drinks

Sipping on a strawberry daquiri and enjoying the sights outside of the Venetian before our gondola ride. Our gondolier was pretty cool and had the voice of an angel, it was like a combination of Fergie and Jesus. But for real, it was good. 

gondola ride las vegas

thrill rides las vegas


The first night we decided to go up in the Stratosphere Tower and take in the view of the city. It was absolutely breathtaking and so cool. The Stratosphere has some crazy thrill rides that we got to see throughout the weekend. The one pictured above shoots off the side and is like a teeter totter that goes back and forth overlooking everything....insane!! 
We went to Level 107 Lounge and enjoyed some appetizers and drinks while the lights came alive at night. The restaurant on the level below us rotates and moves while you eat giving you a 360 degree view of the city throughout your meal...it was pretty funny watching people move around us. 

view from stratosphere hotel

vegas skyline

stratosphere lounge

After drinks at the Stratosphere we made our way down the strip again and checked out Planet Hollywood including scoping out the Britney Store when it was closed. We went to the secret pizza place in the Cosmopolitan too...if you are going to Vegas and want a cheap low key place that's a hidden gem I'll fill you in. 

I have too many great pictures to share and fun details to recap to do this all in one post, so I'm going to share some more next time. I'm sure you want to hear all about the Britney show and meeting Lauren from Lot 48!

For more pictures before my next post you can always check out my Instagram . I hope you all have an amazing weekend and enjoy it with the ones you love the most. 

See you next week...