“Get To Know Me” Tag

What is your middle name?

Renee.

What is your favorite color?

It’s a toss-up between green and blue. I like looking at and taking pictures of the sky, trees and the ocean.

Who was your first best friend?

A little girl named Sara. We’re not super close anymore because we only went to daycare together between the ages of 5 and 10. But I think we would’ve still been friends today if we hadn’t gone to different schools.

How tall are you?

5’4”-ish.

Cats or Dogs?

Definitely dogs. I like dogs more than I like most people. Cats are cute from afar but I’d never want one as a pet. Plus, my fiancé is allergic.

Funniest moment throughout School?

In college, my friends and I would kind of play pranks on each other. Continue reading

It’s OK to Buy Expensive Things

For the past year or so, I’ve been listening to a lot of personal finance podcasts and reading personal finance blogs. Most of the information in those podcasts and blogs is great but I’ve noticed one trend/theme that I personally don’t like. There seems to be this notion that you cannot like or buy nice things and still be financially stable/secure. First of all, that’s not true at all. You can buy a nice handbag or a luxury car and still have a good credit score with your emergency fund untouched. I know it’s possible because I do it (minus the luxury car, I’m not there yet). But I am definitely the spender in my relationship and neither my bank account nor my credit score have suffered as a result. I do realize that these podcasters/bloggers have to be somewhat general in what they say and that there are exceptions to rules. I know that there are a lot of people who can’t control their shopping habits and I agree that if you can’t control it, then you don’t need to do it. So I take the “no shopping” advice with a grain of salt, because it doesn’t apply to me. HOWEVER… Continue reading

Happy Birthday to Me!

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I’ve been twenty-six for two days now. My actual birthday fell on a Thursday so I took the following Friday off work. Friday was a very busy day for my fiancé and I. We had been planning on buying a Macbook Pro for a few weeks, but we decided to go to the Apple store in Charlotte so that we could use a friend’s discount. I’m actually typing on it now and it’s very exciting to have a computer again. My last laptop died on me a couple of months after I graduated from college so it has been a while since I’ve had my own computer. We also did a little window shopping at Louis Vuitton and Tory Burch, before visiting a car dealership. We spent about an hour searching for the perfect family car to buy after we get married. I think we made a decision but I change my mind a lot so… this may not be a final decision. We’re not making any big purchases until after the wedding anyway so, I have time to figure out what I really want. My birthday gifts this year were so cute. I got an All-American Chocolate cake from Maxie B’s and Chrissy Teigen’s new cookbook from my mom. And I got three new charms for my Pandora bracelet; two from my babe and one from my dad. I can’t wait to start using that cookbook so that I can share my outcomes here!

Chapter 25 was amazing. Here’s to starting Chapter 26…

Let’s Get In Formation!

I’m going to see Beyoncé!

On Monday February 15th, I was sitting at home instead of at work because it snowed in my city. At 10:00am that morning, I was frantically refreshing the Ticketmaster app that I have on my phone. By the way, I don’t have a computer at my apartment yet. That’s why I was using the app instead of the website. I’ll have my Macbook Pro very soon though. Anyway, I was using the BeyHive presale code that I received in my email from Beyoncé’s official website last week. But my app kept saying that there were no tickets available. Now, I know that Beyoncé can sell out a stadium in 10-20 minutes BUT it was 10:01. There was no way all the tickets were gone in one minute. So I opened my Twitter app to see if anyone was in Ticketmaster’s mentions complaining about an issue. And of course… hundreds of people were saying that the BeyHive presale code was not working. A few minutes later, I saw that someone that I follow on Twitter was able to get tickets to another show that had gone on sale that same day. So I knew that there had to be a way for me to get my tickets. I checked Ticketmaster’s mentions again and I saw someone say that they had heard the new BeyHive presale code was… “Beyonce” (without the accent mark). So I tried that… AND IT WORKED.

When I wasn’t able to go to the On The Run tour with Beyoncé and Jay Z, I was crushed. And I vowed to myself (and my parents and my then-boyfriend/now-fiance) that I would never miss a Beyoncé tour again. So I started a Beyoncé emergency fund and I actually didn’t have to use it this time around but if I ever need to, I’ve got my coins ready.

Hey Beyoncé girl, see you on May 3rd!

PS. I got FLOOR SEATS! 🙂

Birthday Blessings

My 25th birthday was this Tuesday (March 10th) and a lot of exciting things are happening in my life, so I’m claiming them as my birthday blessings. I have a full time permanent job now. I got approved for my first credit card and I’ll be receiving that shortly. I purchased a pair of Prada sunglasses for myself (my 2nd pair of designer sunglasses). Two of my friends and I booked our trip to Las Vegas. My boyfriend is with me every night and it doesn’t look like he’ll be returning to New Jersey anytime soon. And of course, I went shopping! Life is so good right now. I literally have no reason to complain about anything.

Valentine’s Day! ♥ ♥ ♥

I finally got around to buying my boyfriend’s Valentine’s Day gift (a gold watch) a few days ago. So now my Valentine’s Day “week” has officially ended. It was amazing. I know a lot of people try to act like Valentine’s Day is stupid and “everyday should be Valentine’s Day if you’re in a real relationship” (*insert side eye emoji*). But to be honest, this years Valentine’s Day actually was a lot like any other day in our relationship (minus the long distance part). We did a whole lot of nothing together; which is always fun if you’re with the right person. We ran errands and he accompanied me on my frivolous shopping trips (I know he was bored in the stores but he was such a sweetie about it). When I got home after work on Friday, he had rose petals, mimosas and a hot bath waiting for me. We decided against going out and having to fight for a table at crowded restaurants on Saturday night, so he cooked for me and we got some movies from Redbox. Of course the weekend wouldn’t have been complete without ice cream, roses and some new jewelry. Valentine’s Day may just be my favorite holiday since all the other ones suck now. Also, he’s been here during an extremely exciting moment in my life that I will soon be sharing in a separate post. Stay tuned!

Holidays Are For Kids…

Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s have come and gone since the last time I posted a blog and they all SUCKED. They weren’t the most dreadful days of my life but in comparison to how exciting they were when I was a kid… they sucked.

Halloween: I went to see Ouija with my boyfriend. The movie was terrible, but I enjoyed being with my man. Although, it didn’t feel like much of a holiday.

Thanksgiving: The food was GREAT! That is all.

Christmas: Now I understand why people are all of a sudden “broke” in December. I didn’t even buy that many gifts for other people but between presents and regular expenses, I felt like I wasn’t even making any money. I wasn’t even excited about opening my presents. However, the food was GREAT.

New Year’s Eve: I cleaned out my closet after I got home from work. Watched J. Lo’s HBO special and went to sleep at 11:30.

New Year’s Day: The food was AMAZING! Seriously…

So I clearly enjoy eating, but holidays just feel so lackluster to me now. I see my family on a regular basis so that’s no big deal. I’m employed so I can buy my own gifts. I actually get pretty bored after two days away from work, so I find myself saying “I’m ready to go back to work” even on regular weekends. Valentine’s Day is up next. I’m actually a little bit excited about this one because my boyfriend will be here (long-distance relationship). We’ll see what happens…

One Year As An Angel…

“I fought for you. The hardest, it made me the strongest.

So tell me your secrets, I just can’t stand to see you leaving.

But heaven couldn’t wait for you…”

– Beyoncé, “Heaven”

  
Today marks the one year anniversary of Zoey’s death. It feels like it was just yesterday when I returned home from my vacation in Miami to the news that Zoey most likely wouldn’t make it through the night. She had been sick and unable to walk for about a month by then so I knew that we would have to part ways by the end of the year… But I wasn’t ready on May 28th. I still cry about missing her; I think the last time was in late March or early April. I still talk about her, think about her and look at pictures of her. Actually, her picture is still on the lock screen of my iPhone. But don’t get it twisted, I have come to terms with her death and I did that a long time ago. I’m just grateful that I had her in my life for seven amazing years. I learned so much about being selfless and putting someone else’s needs before my own from taking care of her. I know for a fact that I would not be as equipped to love and take care of a child (or anyone else) if I had not had Zoey in my life. Of course I still miss Zoey, but more importantly, I still love her and I appreciate the time I had with her and the lessons learned/memories made during that time. I’m not one of those people who tries to forget that someone died and never talk about them again when they are gone. That’s why I still talk about Zoey as much as I do. I don’t want to forget how she felt, how she smelled, or how good she made me feel. I do what I can to keep her memory alive. I love you. I miss you.

7/8/2005-5/28/2013

Mama, I Love You

“Every other day I crossed the line, I didn’t mean to be so bad,

I never thought you would become the friend I never had.”

– Spice Girls, “Mama”

It’s funny how some things in life end up coming full circle. As a child, you adore your parents for being adult-sized playmates. As a preteen/teen, sometimes you begin to resent them for attempting to stop you from making the same mistakes that they made when they were your age. And as an adult, you begin to identify with them more and see them in a whole new light.

This is exactly what has happened with me and the two most important women in my life: my mother and my grandmother. I really put them through the wringer as a teenager with my “stank” attitude and moody disposition; something I feel really terrible about now that I am in my twenties although it is very common with teenage girls. Now I have the most loving, respecting and stable relationship with them (although my mother and I still clash at times). We are friends. And that is something that I never thought would happen. As a matter of fact, my seventeen year old self would have laughed in your face if you would have predicted this outcome. But it really is true; I see my mother and my grandmother as two of my best friends. I have other friends that are my age, of course. But my mom and grandma are the friends who I will always have and who I can trust to never betray me or lead me in the wrong direction. It’s rare to find that in a person. So I feel lucky to have two beautiful women who love me and would do anything to keep me happy. Now that I am old enough to look back on all the lectures I got from them as a child/teen and see the love behind it instead of the criticism, I feel obligated to reciprocate that love and also pay it forward to my own children (whenever I have some). I’ve learned so much about life from my mom and grandma. I would not be the person that I am today without the two of them. Happy Mother’s Day.