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Pull. It. Together.

This is me feeling better after falling off of my to do list and not cooking for like I don’t know 4-5 days. My eviction date for this slump built of many things and pulling it together was Sunday. Colds, asthma episodes, laundry to do and all……I needed to pull it together .From my own experience, telling myself I must get out of a slump right away only makes things worse. Since I knew the eviction date was the next day, I went to bed early, woke up early Sunday and did all the morning chores. Stopped at Barnes & Noble for some good reads and spent the rest of the day creating content.

Ready for another intentional day and week. Oh and with a new do I been rocking since Thanksgiving.

Check out what I worked on and my next event HERE!

Sweatshirt: TjMaxx stores(recent)

Neck piece: Aldo’s accessories(old)

Jeans: Gstar Men’s jeans (old)

Booties: Pour La Victoire at TjMaxx(recent)

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You’re inspired now what?

You’re inspired, now what?

You ever read that self help book or the one your Instagram girlfriend is raving about and feel so empowered? Ready to take on the world and all. Ideas coming at maximum speed barely allowing you time to act on it?

I’m over just being inspired. If I got even a penny for every dope idea I had I’d be rich. In the last year and even recently I just grew tired of just being inspired without any action or plan to follow suit. I found that being inspired and hours scrolling down social media became another form of procrastination . I of course convinced myself that I was killing two birds- supporting and being inspired. I’d spend hours day dreaming and floating on “what if’s”. Recently I started timing how much time I spent on the internet and set out time to intentionally plan only so that my ideas didn’t just remain ideas or graduate to fantasies.

People constantly ask “How do you do it with 2 kids?!” Truth is while I’m flattered I often think “you have no idea how many hours I waste and how much more I can do.” Then I thought where would my business and brand be if I cut down even more on wasted time? To be honest that question excites and scares me because when I’m focused I go hella hard.

I will share the answer and break down in a few months on my blog.

So I’m not suggesting to stop double tapping or cheering on the dope people and business we support, just don’t let that inspiration be in Vain. Inspiration is suppose to move us because a dream without action is a dream lost.

For me its been a positive observation. One that’s made me rethink and re strategize my use of time. I can do both, it’s just finding that healthy balance of how much I consume and leaving time to act.

Are you currently acting on your dreams?

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Mommy Mascot

Its 30 degrees now what?!

Those damn pity parties I tell ya.

If there’s a popular season for them it’s definitely Winter(technically Fall but whatevs). It’s cold, I don’t want to move, think or do anything for that matter, BUT us Moms don’t have that choice. Actually we do, but it would be a negative domino effect. It’s sucks at times yet it’s an overall blessing that we set the tone for the home and kids. If we are happy so are they. If we are sad and down they already pick up that vibe.

My weather app said 30 degrees this morning and you would have thought yesterday was August or something. Straight drama! I dragged out of bed and did the kids morning routine like a grumpy babysitter. While driving the kids to the bus stop my daughter asked while laughing “why you so mad?!” I replied while also breaking into a laugh “Cause I’m cold” . Like how stupid is that answer? It took for me to say it out loud just to see how ridiculous it was. By now I had like 5 minutes to turn the mood around before I completely dragged their morning. A few jokes and I love you’s later we all were grinning and off to kill the day.

This whole episode reminded me how important mindset is. I thought “you’re not changing the weather so why not change your mindset since it’s gonna stay cold?” Do over: “Its cold AF, but I’m grateful to see today and I can layer and still get things done”

Now part 2 will me convincing myself to think this way about my menstrual cycle x the cold.

“Vanessa at least you know your insides are working great and consistently doing what it needs to do” this mascot moment needs some work but you get the point .

So on top of the title of woman, our profession and being a Mom we are also Mascots!

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Why You Should Wear Lingerie Even In 30 Degree Weather!

Reason 1 It’s sexy and stylish !

Reason 2 A pick me up!

Reason 3 Another exciting piece to the collection

Reason 4 Nobody has to know! Imagine walking around all regular but you know underneath you Cat Woman and shit……a MOMENT! (unless of course you want to walk around with one sleeve off)

Reason 5 Because Quanasia Graham said so and tells us how to style them!!I mean seriously most of the time when we force ourselves to look decent it’s to avoid scaring by passers and or co-workers. It would be a rough life if we always looked how we felt. I’d like to  think I found a balance over the years of looking presentable but also making efforts to look and feel good when no-one else is watching. In the end It’s about a feeling. That brings me to this post.  I love to wear lingerie under my outfits.  Is this a new invention? Nope, but dammit it feels sooo good! Especially the days that feel like they are never ending.  Or when a Mens oversized sweatshirt isn’t feeling “Sexy” enough. Hidden lingerie is like the energy pack that nobody knows about. The one that keeps me feeling fiery  and feminine when I’m ripping and running with my game face and chucks on. I can’t think of wearing lingerie without Wardrobe Curator / Lingerie Stylist Quanasia Graham coming to mind. My brain will not associate it with no one else. Now that my friends is influence! I reached out to Graham for some tips and tricks for lingerie incorporated fits and this is what she had to say .

For starters her favorite boutique’s to shop lingerie are…

La Perla “It’s been around since 1954 and has perfected the craftsmanship of lingerie. One of my favorite pieces is their corset jacket. It’s is truly a revolution of beauty and comfort.”

Agent Provocateur “Because it’s provocative! They have an amazing assortment of. It’s chains, corsets and playful bras that will never go out of style.”

Journelle ” provides a bra fitting experience that I really respect. You can find bras for everyday and also for play. They offer classic lingerie brands like Chantelle, Bordelle, Else, Simone Perele, Triumph, Natori and much more.Styled by Graham

on “Tips for women who are picking out lingerie for the first time ?”  I truly believe that a woman won’t appreciate her clothes until she connects with her body. Lingerie helps with that process because of its power to reveal one’s vulnerabilities. I suggest grabbing a close relative or friend and head to one of the brands/shops I mentioned for a fitting experience. You don’t know what works for you until you try on a few things. Try everything from bras, to slips, kimonos, corsets, bustiers, baby dolls and suspender belts. Trust me, this experience will change the way you look at your body and your wardrobe. Styled by Graham

What about women who want to incorporate lingerie into their outfit while keeping it classy. Any suggestions? The tip is to wear a lingerie piece as a foundational piece and/or as the hero of your look.

The slip as a dress. Its an easy and chic way to be on trend. I started wearing this look 8 years ago! I paired it with an oversized blazer, stockings and booties. My friends couldn’t believe it but they loved it! You can wear it in so many different ways for many different reasons. Also try a turtleneck or t-shirt under or a oversized sweater over one. A leather jacket with a slip dress is also a cool way to wear it!

The corset- You can find me grocery shopping in a corset! I have more of them than I do t-shirts or sweaters. You can also dress it up or down. Wear them over shirts with blazers, leather or denim. Have fun with it and wear it in a way that suits your lifestyle.

Lastly I asked Graham to finish this sentence “When I wear lingerie I feel…”

QG: Like a boss!!! No really. I’m ready to take on the day when I’m properly suited. I can do anything in it. My blog Boudoir Mode is inspired from that feeling. It highlights my world in lingerie.

The Curator herself in my my latest fave of her…

Save yourself the headache of creating a Pinterest lingerie board and just follow Quanasia’s Instagram HERE !!

My outfit:

G-Star Raw Sweatshirt (G-Star Newbury St Boston)

Lingerie one piece- Victoria’s Secret

Jeans- MadeWell

Boots- Frye brand via local TJMaxx

So are you a lingerie wearer? If not did this post make you wanna get loose and buy some?

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November

This morning as I was dropping off my daughter to school I looked over at her in amazement and full of joy. As a parent this feeling happens often but today it was different. The air was cold and crisp just like it was November of 2001.

It hit me this morning that 16 years ago this month in her same grade, my husband(boyfriend at the time) and I was walking back from the neighborhood clinic after finding out I was pregnant. She’s been nothing but joy and lessons and in a sense helped raised us. The most talking her father and I have to do is tell her to clean her room. She tackled her least favorite subject this semester and is mad that she got “a 92 Mommie! Made a stupid mistake.” An overthinking young creative who’s competitive with even just her grades and always trying to outdo her last. Inspired!

November always seem to be a great month for me. One that is filled with ease, clarity and execution. Could just be a coincidence or it could be because it’s my season or because my mother told me in our kitchen this same month “YOU MADE A MISTAKE BUT YOU COULD STILL HAVE ANYTHING YOU WANT”. It’s like an army of trumpets went off with confetti and sparks in the air. After being down for a bit since finding out this was the first time that I changed my perspective. Speaking of which I need to call this Woman before I never hear the end of it.(it’s only been two days since I called by the way)

These pics are from a post I did in November 2015 for “Baby You’re A Star” . Funny enough it’s the pic that came to mind when I thought about an image that best described how I felt. No matter what season it is for you remember that it doesn’t have to stay that way forever. Perspective is everything.

I’m going to make Monday’s the Mom’s corner on the blog. Let me know if there’s anything in particular you’d like to see or hear.

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Steal His Shirt  Season 

Fall  is for stealing Men’s shirt out of bae’s closet. Every Fall I kinda have the same uniform. I pile on top of a turtle neck (like HERE) or a collard shirt and work my way into an outfit that I love. Same shit, different pieces pretty much. The neck fit can be off depending on how big or small bae is. When the neck is oversized even after buttoning I do a nice pull and tuck and boom the shit is a custom fit honey!I did a skirt so I didn’t totally look like I got dressed with the boys! Karla was straight disrespectful when she designed this skirt. I saw it and thought “come on shape!” I love how she make curve complimenting pieces that are timeless and go to  essentials.  And plus she’s probably like the first blogger most of us looked to when we first started blogging. I know me and my friends did and I’m more than proud to genuinely support her new endeavor.

Besides layering I’ve been trying to keep a healthy balance of being in the moment and staying aware and updated. Nowadays staying too aware can be overwhelming and stressful. Everywhere you turn and every scroll there’s a new attack and or shooting so when that happens I worktowards  finding happiness  in the little things and enjoying the moment , work and my family.

How you doin?!!!!  Done talking about the outfit. How are you dealing with the constant news and negativity that seems flooded via tv and social media?

Shirt: Men’s H&M 

Vintage wool coat : Bobby From Boston

Skirt: The Line By K

Booties: Pour La Victoire via local TjMaxx(selected stores)

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This Ain’t A Christmas Ad

….more like a “Twirl into it post” 

Sometimes you have to put on your “feel good pieces”. What’s that you ask? Feel good pieces are any items / essentials  that makes you feel good. The ones that make you feel sexy, powerful and unapologetic. For days when I’m leaning towards pitty parties or procrastination I will put on my red lipstick as a pick me up. Or a fuzzy full length  cardigan that makes me feel bad ass because it flows behind me like a cape. Extra I know, but it gets the job done. What’s that job you ask? To look the part and get shit done with a better attitude. 

Here’s a few things I do when I’m dragging in the morning.
Pull my hair up 

Show your face to the world instead of hiding behind your hair. You are forced to have your chin up.

Lipstick 

It works every time!  There’s no way you are going to pout with done up lips. Who said date night lips can’t be worn in the day time?! Exactly. Said no bad ass woman ever.

I love a great Red, but currently indulging in “Persistence” by M.A.C

Dope outwear

A sweatsuit or gym clothes is no longer just dressed down clothes if you add a leather Moto jacket, a tuxedo jacket or fuzzy cardigan. Automatic pick me up!

Shoes

If they are fun, textured, sparkly… put them on. Great shoes  go with anything you say they do. Even if you are working from Starbucks today like I am. It  never hurts!

This outfit was definitely a feel good outfit. More black than the usual but excitement was made up to through the different texture play. I was invited to Milly x Man Repeller dinner with friends and wore this for a seat at the table with amazing women in Fashion. That was the ultimate pick me up for probably the rest of the year. One that will last forever because the energy was so good. See hashtag #millymoment on Instagram to see see some captures from the night.
More on what I and other women do as a pick me up while  balancing family and werk … check out my latest feature on Man Repeller
Top: Theory of Gaia
Skirt: Cinq á Sept  via Tjmaxx stores 

Shoes: Tibi (during their sample sale two weeks ago) 
Don’t forget to twirl into the rest of the week girl! 

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Floral & Tweed Tings


Finally fun dressing can begin!  Summer is cool, but I’m damn near a minimalist each time because who wants to be bothered with more layers than they have to?! 

My Fall go to’s are a good pair of tailored pants and fun printed tips. I keep the silhouettes the same but add fun in the prints and textures. When the temp really drops I’ll jut add a blazer, cargo oversized jacket or a thick knit sweater.  That’s how I maximize my wardrobe for the Fall, by playing with the same pieces and styling them differently!

Floral top, men’s tweed  pants and horse buckle belt from @BobbysFromBoston
Shoes: (old )Kate Spade NYC

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No Opinions Being Considered  At This Time. Thanks!

It’s cold, raining and I had  Just gotten  back from a five day work gig in Burglinton Vermont and I’m exhausted to say the least. Not in a social mood, but  my mother calls and because she’s my mother I pick up. 

“Hi Mother! What’s up?”

Her: you back?

Me: yup just got back to Massachusetts

Her: Well Vana I don’t think this is a job you can do for too long. Remember you have two kids and a husband.

(Like Jesus be the filter and guide my tongue because this is my mother)

At this point I wish I had a cup of coffee to sip on..


“What the fuck does that mean?!” Is what came to mind, however that’s not what I said. Duh.

Now…..*sigh* This woman has been my biggest cheerleader my whole life and the one who convinced that I could still have anything I want despite becoming a teen mother.  Usually I’m quick with a response or comeback but this one threw me off. It needed to be registered, thought out and slept on.

I’m certain she was and still is in my best interest, but I couldn’t agree on this one.  After giving it some thought it became bigger than how much the statement affected me. I thought about how many other women (including her) have been told to slow down, leave it alone or wait til later on to live their dreams. My mother raised two girls by herself and doesn’t know the feeling of having a husband who is one of the best fathers a kid can ask for(He. Holds. It. Down!). Let me remind you that in the Haitian culture no matter how good of a husband you have or how many nanny’s you have a mother is still held more accountable  for that child  than the Man is. Can’t speak for all Haitians but it’s a pattern I’ve seen and heard often since a youth. The men often do what they want when they want while the women stay home and keep shit right. Because my mother was a single mother she had no one to watch us while she “went to fashion week” or to “obtain a college degree at night” like I was fortunate to do .  Taking all of those things into consideration made me less angry, but also deciding that her opinion whether good intentions or not doesn’t have to be my truth even though that’s my mother. Period. 

All I could think about was how many other women have had their dreams silenced because of cultural ways, opinions and or lack of spouse support?  How many have already given up or didn’t start yet?

Well let me tell you that chasing your goals is a must and always WORTH IT. Even if it may cause friction at times. Truth is if my husband had to travel for work as often as I choose to no family member would judge. He’d proudly discuss the success with his friends and business partners  over tea and plan to dominate some more. And guess what? I’d be right there cheering him on as I’ve done since forever. We, me, you want and deserve the same support. I’d have a hefty bag full of money if I collected each time someone gave a negative feedback about my career choices. Sometimes even on my way to the airport or bus terminal I’m dealing with the tensions of “another travel?!”.  Each time it happens I ask myself and remind myself why am I going and what’s the end goal. 

Our gut never lies. You know when you should go for it and you know when to take a break. One thing that won’t feel good both from experience and hearing other stories of regret is not taking that leap.


What I learned from this experience 
My dreams are not up for debate.

People’s opinions whether good or bad isn’t my truth unless I say so.

There isn’t always a second chance, sometimes you have to leap at the first opportunity.

Use the silence button. Aka “no opinions being considered at this time”

What about you? Ate your dreams currently up for discussion?

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In a funk

Not at the moment, but I was Sunday when I shot these. I had to cook three meals because I’m out of state for werk.(See insta stories).

I had this shoot scheduled and wanted so bad to cancel it, but life doesn’t always work that way right? Sometimes we have to show up, get shit done.

Even in a funk….

Shirt: current Tjmaxx(currently available)

Pants: Zara online (last month)

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