Archive of ‘LIFESTYLE’ category

Global Wellness Day with Four Seasons Hotel Washington, DC

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I hope everyone had a glorious weekend. It was hot here in the DMV and I loved every single minute of it. On Saturday, I spent time at the Four Seasons Hotel in Washington, DC to celebrate Global Wellness Day. Global Wellness Day is just what it says – a day to celebrate wellness in various forms. It was also great to meet new local bloggers in real life instead of just on the Internet. For me, wellness is sleep, great food, and working out.

The Four Seasons Washington, DC is a true luxury destination and as a one of the invited media it was great to see the hotel participate in making wellness global. The hotel is situated in Georgetown, a popular area in DC and perfect for runners. The hotel’s spa is one of the best in the area for relaxation and rejuvenation.

The morning started with yoga (my personal favorite) outside with local instructor Christina Popescu. I normally practice in a studio and outside can always present challenges. Bugs, heat, uneven terrain, but the best thing about it is I have to focus on my breath and each posture.

{Yoga outside. I could get used to this.}

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By the time, we sweated it out and finished with savasana I was so relaxed. Savasana takes on a different meaning outside listening to the birds and babbling canal water. After yoga is was a post-yoga green juice (Green Goddess) and superfood muffins (I need the recipe).

{Green Goddess Juice & Superfood Muffins}

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The snack was a great preparation for breakfast. The hotel created the Green Machine omelette in honor of Global Wellness Day. I never have delicious Huevos Rancheros therefore I did my Texas duty and devoured mine. After lunch, it was time to relax in the spa area and because I never met a sauna or steam room I didn’t like I treated my body to a sweaty detox session.

{Green Machine Omelette}

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{Huevos Rancheros}

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{Spa treatment room}

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I finished the day with a makeup session with local makeup artist Gavin Hebert using Jane Iredale products which I loved. I’m usually not a mineral makeup fan, but Gavin changed my mind.

{My before and after. My face felt light all day.}

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If you want to see how other Four Seasons around the world celebrated Global Wellness Day search the hashtag #FSWellness. Thank you to everyone at the Four Seasons for such a lovely day. Ladies, let’s make wellness an everyday event.

Cooking Light & Health’s The Fit Foodie 5K

I love my food. In all its glorious forms and I usually say “I workout so I can eat.” Cooking Light and Health Magazine heard the fit foodie’s cry and created a weekend of fitness and food. Cooking Light & Health’s The Fit Foodie 5K Weekend is June 19-21. The weekend consists of a VIP Cocktail Party, 5K run, yoga and food. What more could you ask for? Grab a girlfriend and see you next weekend. Run.Eat.Drink.

I also have a personal code for you to register for the weekend:  AMBASSADORGUEST. The weekend will also be taking place later this year in Chicago and San Diego.

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Reading Pretty: My Paris Dream by Kate Betts

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I simply devoured Kate Betts memoir My Paris Dream. You may know Kate as the author of Everyday Icon: Michelle Obama and the Power of Style, but to me I feel a kindred soul. In My Paris Dream, Kate reflects on her time spent in Paris and the learning experience of a young woman who followed a dream. The book resonated with me because it’s coming on my 14-year anniversary of studying in Paris and all I can think of is: “what if Jamie never encouraged me to go?”

Before I graduated from college I had two choices – walk a stage or board a Continental Airlines (now United Airlines) flight to Paris. Guess which one I chose? Paris. I didn’t need a cap and gown ceremony. I needed baguettes, cheese, wine, and coming into my own. The previous few years had been a nightmare.

I lost my dad in 1999 and I remember my brother Jamie stepping in when I needed him. When my French teacher suggested I study abroad in Paris immediately fear crept in. I confided in my best friend Cassaundra, but I also confided in Jamie who I thought would discourage me. He didn’t. He immediately said “Move in with me and my family, save all your money, and go study in a place you dreamed about.” Well, alrighty then.

I took Jamie and his family up on their offer. On May 11, 2001 I stepped on a plane to go study, solo and prayed that all the money I paid for an apartment (before Air B&B) would result in me having an apartment. Cell phones? Not so much. My entire family went to the airport with me. This was when you could sit with your families before you flew and they could literally see you off. I remember sitting in CDG (Charles de Gaulle) after landing crying and writing in my journal. I was here. The place of Josephine Baker, Richard Wright, Laduree, Eartha Kitt, James Baldwin, Dior, Louis Vuitton, and oh yes, Sisley Cosmetics.

The year was magical. Unlike anything, I had ever experienced growing up in the South. It was literally my personal Paris dream. The dream would have never happened without Jamie. I miss him every day and especially now as I reminisce on my time in Paris. I had a dream and I was thankful for a brother who stepped in and helped make it happen. How many people are not living their dream and just existing? I hope you my fellow readers are not one of them. Life is too short to find your own Paris dream.

“You were born with wings, why prefer to crawl through life?” ~ Rumi

Reading Pretty: The Beauty Detox Power: Nourish Your Mind and Body for Weight Loss and Discover True Joy by Kimberly Snyder

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I’ve been a huge fan of Kimberly Snyder for years. I met her when she lived in NY and she made me raw food and her famous green goddess smoothie. This was before there was a juice bar on every corner and green drinks now replaced soda in many hands. I love it. I believe one of the keys to beauty is food.

Kimberly’s new book focuses on cleaning the body through nourishing and healthy food that actually tastes good and is good for you.The Beauty Detox Power is a great addition to the beauty wellness bookshelf. After traveling the past few weeks, I decided to take a few days to reset. The best way for me is to relax, eat clean, and sleep. It’s amazing, but I seriously have been craving salad of all kinds and Sweetgreen definitely is my weakness. I’m definitely turning into my mother. The woman has eaten a salad every day her entire life. Yep, that’s why she’s so healthy at 75.

Dior and I

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Last week before I headed to South Florida, my friend and I decided to see the limited release fashion documentary Dior and I. It was such a treat. The documentary follows Raf Simmons the new designer at Dior for his first haute couture show. He had to create the show in less than 8 weeks. Yes, you read correctly. In less than two months, he had to create a couture show for the house with original ideas with past influences.

The movie shows how much work and time goes into couture and why the dress is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. It also explains how the atelier and the designer sometimes butt heads. This film is for the true fashion lovers who love history, whimsy, and exceptional talent. The movie is in limited release so hurry and go see it.

It also gives you a glimpse of Paris and that is always a good thing.

Reading Pretty: Spinster by Kate Bolick

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There are things in life that are not for everyone. Marriage and kids as it relates to this review. I wish we lived in a world where people respected others decisions on what works and doesn’t work for them instead of being judgemental. Kate Bolick’s Spinster gives a detailed look on one person’s journey of discovery and choices.

Choices. That’s a word we rarely use when it comes to our own lives. Years ago during a church service I remember my pastor saying “Life is choice driven. We live and die by the choices we make.” To this day, I still use this statement. To everyone I consult, family, friends, and people wanting my opinion on certain things. Everyone makes different choices. Those choices work for them or may not. The judgment, jealousy, and bitterness to others choices shouldn’t faze you in the least. The book gives one woman’s choice, how she came to the choice, and how she continues to live with it.

The book resonated with me because of her decision to own her choice. I wish people who read the book, especially women, come away with understanding how important choices are in their lives. In every single aspect. Personal and professional. I have traveled the world and visited countries where women don’t have choices and to be a woman in this country, be able to make my own choices, and live my life on my terms is well – priceless.

Shopbop Friends & Family Event

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One of my favorite online destinations is Shopbop. Since I am on a minimalist kick in my clothes and I don’t want a closet full of things I don’t love. I have been on a strict clothing excavation of my life. There are few items that I want for Spring from Shopbop and I can’t wait to get to shopping. I need to hurry up because their family and friends event sale ends tomorrow and with 25% off the majority of the site I know my favorites may run out.

Wellness Wednesday: My YogaWorks Online Yoga Classes

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I can’t get enough of online yoga classes. As much as I am on the go and love to take actual classes sometimes it isn’t possible. If I’m on the move, online classes are the next best thing. I have been testing out My YogaWorks for the past few weeks and I’m in deep love. All my favorite yoga teachers, especially my Los Angeles based teachers are on there and I am able to take class and practice with them from afar. Like now since I have been in Louisiana for a week and it has been pretty hectic since I arrived.

I have been a fan of Alexandria Crow for a long time and always wanted to take a workshop with her. Now, I can take her various level classes and work on my handstand in the process. Yes, it is a process. Last year at the Yoga Journal conference in NYC I took classes with Vinnie Marino and let me tell you what an absolute crush I have on him now. I get to practice online with Vinnie and again at this year’s conference. Vinnie has some of the best music for his playlists. Eka Ekong is new on my yoga teacher crush list and when I need to slow my mind (which is quite often actually), I take her classes and feel renewed.

My YogaWorks classes have great teachers I plan on taking classes with and various series. They have a series on splits that I want to start trying next month. If you are curious to try yoga, take their free 14-day trial. You will be hooked.

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