Confidence Is Series Episode 1: Andrea Leilani

Good Morning! When I was thinking about what I wanted “Amore Luxe” to become after changing the name and rebranding back in 2014, I thought about all of the things that I struggled with growing up and how those issues affected me into adulthood. Self-confidence is something that I always had an issue with especially when if felt like everyone else had it all together. Social media only added to my insecurities especially when so many of us only show the good side of our lives and leaving the pain, frustration and doubt out. I wanted to create a “safe space” where women could talk freely about what was going on in their lives without judgment and I would be transparent about my journey and process to becoming the best version of myself. It took some time to figure out exactly how I wanted to implement all of the ideas in my head (5 long years to be exact) but I finally got it together! One of the ideas was what I call “Confidence Is…” Series where I interview women who have overcome various adversities both seen and unseen to become the strong, powerful ladies we see today. These women would share their stories and what they had to go through in order to get to a place where they were happy with who they are regardless of the opinions of others. I had 3 women in mind that I wanted to start this series off with and I am so happy that I was able to get one of them for the first episode which was released on YouTube in June. Andrea Leilani is an amazing woman who struggled with her identity and confidence but once she decided to be true to herself and who she was, she was able to find happiness and radiate positivity and light to others.

You can view my interview with Andrea Leilani by clicking below and be sure to like/comment/share. Working on getting the 2nd episode together as we speak so be on the lookout for that. If someone you know would has an interesting/unique story on how they were able to become the best version of themselves, email me at angelacherai@gmail.com so I can share their story! Hope everyone has an amazing week and until next time, always remember to love and live luxuriously!

 

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Spotlight On Black Businesses: Day 2

Good Morning! I am back with Day 2 of my Spotlight On Black Businesses. These next 3 businesses are my go to ladies for my protective style needs and new go to online boutique for my fashion needs. I have known these 3 women for 10 + years and I am so happy that they stepped out on faith and started their own businesses. Read on to find more about these lovely ladies and their endeavors.

Shante (@suiteshante)

I just have to say Happy Birthday to my girl Tae!!! She is kicking off her thirty something (not gonna put her age out there like that) year with a bang! Today is not only her bday but it is also the official launch of her online boutique Suite Shante (www.suiteshante.com) I remember when Suite Shante was just a dream and to see her vision come to fruition has been motivation for me to get back on my grind. She is so deserving of all the success that is headed her way and mark my words, Suite Shante will be a premiere online boutique for trendy, chic clothing at an affordable price. I plan on taking flicks in the outfit that I’ve already chosen from the site(its hella cute!)  so check for those in upcoming posts! Make sure you follow her on IG @suiteshante for more information! Tae, Happy Happy Birthday! I am not sure what you will wish for but I am sure that whatever it is, you will make it happen because that’s just who you are! Thank you for always being there for me and giving me the push I needed to get back into the swing of things. I know that Suite Shante is just the tip of the iceberg so I am looking forward to what’s next.  We will definitely have a blast  on Sunday! Love ya

Tiffany (@_kustomkrownz)

There’s so much I can say about my oldest friend (Known her since we were 6 lol) but one thing that always stood out about Tiffany is her passion for life and desire to learn. She is self taught as it relates to making wigs and was the only person that could get me in a wig for longer than a day because of how skilled and talented she is! Through her company Kustom Krownz, she sells high quality virgin hair extensions (which I can honestly say last for a long time!) and custom made wig units which she will cut, dye, style and whatever else you desire!  Recently, she opened up her own salon suite right outside of Las Vegas. I am bummed that she is so far away but so proud of her making that move in order to grow and expand. Fortunately for me and her other customers outside of Nevada, she does ship so make sure you hit her up at @_kustomkrownz and tell her that Angie sent you so I can get a discount lmao…seriously though if you want high quality extensions and wigs at reasonable prices, Kustom Krownz is the way to go! Tiffany, 27 years of friendship and counting and I have never been more proud of you than I am now. Your growth and ability to seize the moment has led you to all of the success you have had so far and there is still so much more to go. I will be out there as soon as I can to see your salon. Love ya!!!

Tiarah (@crochet_queen9)

There isn’t just one word I can use to describe Tiarah because she is funny, chill, friendly, serious, crazy (in the best way possible!) and very talented. The box braid style you see in the pic was done by her masterful hands (don’t ask her to do this particular style for you cause I was at her house forever and she’s just not gonna do it ever again lol) and I love the result! Crochet & Slay is her company where she will crochet (obviously!) braid, and twist your hair to give you a style that works for your taste and budget. I stopped going to braiding salons because I feel that Tiarah takes the time (literally!) and effort into giving you exactly what you want without the headache and tension that can happen when you let others braid your hair. Make sure you hit her up @crochet_queen9 for an appointment and view the various styles and satisfied clients she has. Tiarah, I am so proud of you and all of the moves you are making to ensure a better future for you and your family. Following your passion is tough but you have put in the work which is half the battle. Can’t wait to see where Crochet & Slay goes and just remember that you can do anything you set your mind to! Love you girl!

Tomorrow will be the spotlight on the last 3 businesses/endeavors so make sure you come back to view my post! Also, if you own a business, comment below so I can shout you out in a future post! Thanks for the support and always remember to love and live luxuriously!

#FearlessFriday: How To Get Your Creative Juices Flowing

Good Morning! I know I said that I was going to discuss my healthy eating habits and I promise that I will get back to that…once I start eating healthy consistently that is! I’m all over the place with my good days and bad days but I am aiming for progress not perfection so once I start making some serious progress, I will be sure to share my tips and all of that. For now, I wanted to focus on something that has worked for me and that is the one thing that helped me when I was suffering from writer’s block and in need of inspiration: an idea book.

 

A page from my idea book…my handwriting is terrible I know lol

As I previously mentioned, I have been going to therapy for the past several months to cope with my anxiety, stress and mild depression. During one of our sessions, I told my therapist that I have felt uninspired and as a result, couldn’t think of anything to write about on here. She suggested that I purchase an idea book and write whatever comes to my mind in whatever form I wanted. Since the book was mainly to help me brainstorm, it didn’t have to be organized and structured like a planner and I didn’t have to have any particular goal in mind while writing. I can honestly say that having no restrictions when writing was such a freeing experience. I could write whatever I wanted, how I wanted and there was no wrong way to go about it. The ideas flowed easily after that. I wrote my ideas into random lists like “Amore Luxe Media Goals” and “Ideal Jobs/Careers” as well as a list of blog/video ideas based off of the ideas from the other lists. I realized I was lying when I said I didn’t have anything to write about because it was clear in those few pages that I actually did. Now I’m not saying that I have it all figured out but my idea book is a step in the right direction!

Remember that the only rule is that there are no rules so don’t feel confined to write your ideas and thoughts in a certain way. You don’t even have to call it an idea book if your book has other things in it like pictures or song lyrics that you’re working on. The point of the book is to spark your creativity and do it in a way that’s unique to you and your thought process. I bought my book for $5 bucks from a Macy’s outlet store but you can go to your local book store, Amazon.com or a specialty store where you can get a leather-bound book or an engraving if you’re fancy like that! I consider my book and the contents in it to be an extension of my personality and plan on using the ideas in it to create a new vision board. The possibilities are endless and I am so thankful to my therapist for helping me rediscover my passion and purpose through this book.

 

Do you have an idea book or something similar? Let me know what you use it for and how it’s helped you in the comments section below. Have a great weekend and make sure you always love and live luxuriously!

#MotivationMonday: Let go of what you cannot change

36e661fbc9b8f77232c494a807681139Good Afternoon! I know I haven’t posted in a week and to be honest, I didn’t feel up to it. I’ve been really bummed out lately and up until today, my anxiety was going into overdrive. I had a hard time falling asleep and when I finally did, I kept having weird dreams that I’m still trying to decipher. On top of all that, my chest felt tight and I knew I was worried/anxious but I wasn’t sure why. It took spending time with my grandmother yesterday for the light bulb to go off in my head and the conversation we had helped me get to the root of my anxiety which helped me to move forward.

My grandmother has soooooo many pictures from the time she graduated high school until now and as I mentioned in an earlier post “Photograph”, (https://amoreluxe.com/2016/10/12/photograph/) I love looking at them and hearing all the stories behind the pictures. As we came across a picture of my father who passed in 2014, we both started feeling melancholy and my grandma said “A mother isn’t supposed to outlive her child” and how she usually understands that everything happens for a reason but my father’s passing was something that she could never fully comprehend. I told her that some things just aren’t meant to be understood but that you have to accept it and find peace in knowing that things happen the way they are supposed to. Call it destiny, fate or whatever but what is meant to be will be. In that moment, I realized that most of my anxiety stemmed from the fact that I was worried about things that I could not change or control. I would ask myself questions like “Why did I slack off in my late teens-early 20’s at the first college I attended?” “Why did I waste so much time being involved with men who weren’t ready to commit?” and the one that I kept wasting energy on was “Why does it feel like I’m so behind in life compared to everyone else?” The answer to all of my questions was the same: Since it cannot be changed, I need to find peace with it and move on.  I can’t change the past so why do I continue to focus on the mistakes I’ve made as it relates to school or relationships?  I can only focus on the present and future and learn from those mistakes to make better choices that will bring happiness and success in my life. When it comes to worrying about others, it’s pointless because as I’ve stated many times before, everyone has their own journey and comparing my life to others doesn’t help me in my journey especially since I may not know what they went through to get to where they are today. Everyone has their own story and while I encourage others to go after their goals and dreams and live up to their potential, I only have control over my life and I need to direct my thoughts and energy on getting to where I want to be and look at positive examples and use that to fuel my motivation instead of allowing it to drain the passion that burns within me. I would say the “Serenity Prayer” every night before going to bed but last night was the first time in a long time that I said it and believed in the words I whispered to myself. For those of you who don’t know the “Serenity Prayer”, here it goes:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference.

I know that the battle within myself isn’t  over yet but I am in a better mental space today and I am glad I am able to share all the craziness inside this head of mine with you! Let me know what you think and like/share this post if you were able to learn something from it 🙂 Check back on Wednesday for my next post which will probably be about what helps me to de-stress because I’ve tried any and everything to relax and stay focused so stay tuned for that!

 

Much love to you all and always remember to love and live luxuriously!