Twirling into a Good Week

Hi Friends!

I’m back with a brand new look today, but before I share one of my fave looks as of late, I wanted to tell you the three things I do on Sunday to set myself up for a great week!

  1. Clean – vacuum, do your laundry, put fresh sheets on your bed, scrub your toilet, your sink, & your tub. This makes for feeling like you are in control of your week. NO SUNDAY SCARIES over here!
  2. Plan out the week – from blog and Instagram content, to the work week, and social agenda, MAP it out! Sitting down with what’s on the calendar helps me accurately anticipate my time. Time is the most valuable thing these days, especially when we feel like we don’t have enough of, am I right? Get a planner! It’s honestly made me feel very productive and I love making lists (maybe just to cross things off, but still)!
  3. Do something to treat yourself – make yourself a great dinner, put on a face mask, read that final chapter of the book you’ve been putting off, take a soak, watch an episode of Derry Girls and have a laugh. Reward the productivity that you’ve put in your day by doing something that’ll feel great as you wind down for a good night’s sleep.

Now for this $55 tunic dress that has a high-low hem. I paired it with black tights and knee high boots, but I’m also psyched to pair with some wedges when the weather gets nicer!

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Shop: Tunic Dress, Boots (similar wide calf and regular), Clutch, Hoops

Thanks for stopping by y’all!

Xx

Dear 20 year old Me

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Me, 20 years old, singing my heart out at a karaoke bar in Nashville, Tennessee. God bless fake i.d.s and all the people who booed us off the stage.

L Mae. Girl.

We need to have a chat. Life is good right here and right now at 20. There are friends aplenty and the beer is flowing in Oxford, Mississippi (Hotty Toddy and PPLAM to any Rebels reading this). College is the sweet spot and you’re going to stay here as long as you can (shout out to those two years in grad school)! There are some things you need to know, though. This next decade (specifically the last six years from 24-30) is going to be a ROLLERCOASTER. All the things. Grown up things. Like career changes, and bills, and weddings, and deaths, life-lasting friendships, deteriorating friendships. It can all feel too grown up sometimes and leave you feeling like, “Well, hell. How’d we get here?” Continue reading “Dear 20 year old Me”

Resetting in the New Year

Hey friends and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

I know what you’re thinking, another resolutions post. However, I have a different take on the whole resolutions thing, which I’m detailing below.

January 1st brings about something a lot of people call “resolutions”… things to do better, be better at. However, because of the hype, whenever we fall off the wagon (whatever the wagon may be), we are crushed with a sense of failure. How about we call these “resolutions” intentions instead? The things you INTEND to do, to be. The expectation is still there, but within reason, giving yourself flexibility to attain your goals without guilt for a simple misstep. My two words of focus for 2019 are GROWTH and WELLNESS. With that being said, I’ve created four intentions for myself:

1. Pitch myself with purpose – What do I want out of this year? To grow That Blonde Rebel. That means I need to be strategic about what brands I want to represent and show you guys on my platform. I want to continue to be my authentic self with y’all, being open and transparent about the good, the bad, and the ugly of being a 30 year old single girl in a big city. I’ve been researching how to pitch myself to brands to land some collaborations and I’m excited to put myself out there in this way and see what may come from it.

2. Save more, spend less – Doesn’t everyone want to do this? On a real note, I’m living in a studio apartment that costs almost double what I was paying at my last place. The area is great and there are awesome amenities, so it’s fine, but I probably could have made a better decision. 2019 is going to be big. Weddings, babies, showers, bachelorettes, trips, etc. There are going to be things I have to say no to, which is going to be hard. I’m typically a YES gal to everyone and want to make sure my nearest and dearest feel all the love from me. However, that love may have to look differently if I can’t make all of it work within my budget. And that’s okay.

3. Be more focused on self-care – I have not learned the true value and importance of self-care more than this past year. I hurt my back again (which led to several rounds of steroid injections and muscle relaxers). This caused me to altogether stop working out. My thyroid was off this past summer, making me groggy, blue, and puffy from packing on some extra pounds. I’ve been going non-stop and it’s like my body has not been able to keep up. Then, when I fell after Thanksgiving and landed in a boot on and off for the past month, I felt like it was a major setback. My anxiety is also at a record high. I haven’t had an issue with anxiety since my last year of grad school. Well, the old bastard is back and I have to analyze why and figure out how to combat it. I know it sounds like I’m complaining, but I’m not. I’m trying to give all of you reading a true glimpse of my wellness scale, a baseline of where I’m at currently and what I want to improve. I want to focus on meditation, drinking more water, not eating fast food as often as I embarrassingly do, and getting more steps in. These things aren’t to lose weight, but to get my wellness journey back on track, which will impact not only me physically, but also mentally and emotionally. Who’s with me?!

4. Be open to possibilities – Self-doubt is a major bummer, am I right? Thinking we’re not ready, not good enough. 2017 was serious hell for me. 2018 was about getting back on track. I had some hurdles, but it was alright. 2019 is going to be my year to be okay and try new things. Hello Bumble, I’d like a husband please. Oh, it doesn’t work that way? Okay. Fine. Let’s start with swiping right and dating. I’m here for it. There I said it. Manifesting it here first and updating my Bumble profile as we speak. Here goes nothing…

I hope this post resonated with you in some way and I hope that you know you’re not alone. We’re in this together.

2019 is going to be the year of Liza (and the year of you, too!) and making some things happen! Can’t wait to bring y’all along for it all.

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Here’s to a great year of growth and wellness for us all!

Xx

Thankful, Grateful, and Stuffed

Happy Wednesday, y’all!

Since Thanksgiving is tomorrow, I thought I’d go ahead and say what I’m thankful for this year.

As always, I’m thankful for my friends and family. I’m thankful for their kindness, their generous spirits, and their unwavering support of me and That Blonde Rebel. Families and friendships can get complicated, but especially this time of year, it’s important to tell those near and far how much you love and appreciate them.

I’m also thankful for all of you that read, support, and shop my blog and Instagram. I absolutely love connecting with all of you and sharing my life, my Sunday Inspo’s, and my outfits. Thank you for cheering me and on and I can’t wait to share more of this exciting holiday season with every single one of you.

I hope you enjoy this Thanksgiving with the people you love.

Now, I’m going to prepare myself to gobble ’till I wobble.

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Shop: Top, Leggings (regular and plus), Booties, Jacket (similar here and here), Bracelets, Earrings, Sunnies, Bag

What are you thankful for this year?

Xx

Blog Life

Hi friends!

If you’re thinking about starting a blog, or just started one, this post is for you! I’ve recently been asked quite a few questions about blogging and thought I’d compile those questions and give you my insight. Also important to keep in mind, I consider myself a baby blogger. Almost two years at this and I’m still learning every single day. Algorithm changes. Collaborations with brands. Cohesive feed. Solid content. It’s a lot, but I’m happy to impart whatever wisdom I’ve acquired in this short time. Below are the questions y’all have asked; plus if you keep strolling, check out the planner I use to keep That Blonde Rebel rockin’ and rollin’!

Q: How do you get started/How long have you been blogging?

A: Well, first, that’s so exciting that you want to build a platform and share your voice with the world! I started That Blonde Rebel in January 2017 – I started because I felt like I wanted to share my outfit and Inspo with women and girls who looked like me (and who didn’t) to take risks, try the trends, and embrace COLOR! I had my Instagram for about 5 months and launched my blog that June. I would suggest testing with Instagram before investing in your own site.

Q: Any advice for a newbie trying to grow her page?

A: ENGAGE, ENGAGE, ENGAGE! Identify who the people are that you like to follow. Why do you like to follow them? Tell them! Comment and like and support those in your community. People want to see real life too, so be active with Stories! Use hashtags that are purposeful and tied to what you post!

Q: What sites do you recommend for hosting a blog?

A: Since launching That Blonde Rebel (the blog) back in June of 2017, I’ve rolled with WordPress. It’s user-friendly, I own the domain of my site, and there are tons of templates to make and customize to make your blog exactly what you want. I’m still figuring out the nuts and bolts of my site and have BIG IDEAS for TBR in 2019!

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

A: Ahh, there’s too much great advice I’ve gotten, so that’s hard to narrow down. I think to be authentic to yourself, honest with your audience, and invest in what you truly believe in.

Q: Who are some of your favorite bloggers?

A: Too many to name! I’m inspired on the regular by amazing women! Here’s just a few: my own mom, @frickspicks, @carriec, @alexmichaelmay, @kerrently, @blaireadiebee, @rachmartino, @apinchoflovely, @kathleen_barnes, @sassyredlipstick, @wannabefashionblogger

Q: How does one get invited to blogger events?

A: This question is tough to answer and I think it goes back to engagement. The events that I’ve been invited to have been because someone knows me directly, or someone found me through That Blonde Rebel. I get invited to something every once in a while, and try to meet and talk to as many people as possible. Get to know the awesome blogging people in your community!

Q: How do I magically gain followers and start making income?

A: Short answer: There’s no magic potion. Longer answer: I mean, yea, there are companies that you can buy followers and likes from, which I think should be highly discouraged. When brands reach out and want to work with you, your engagement should be authentic; they want to see the numbers. If you want to do giveaways, do them! You’re giving treats to the people that support you and other bloggers regularly. Be purposeful with your hashtags. Reach out to brands with a pitch. How and why do you want to work with them – how can you benefit them. What’s the worst they can say? No? Okay. Move on, then! Also, know your worth. I have been verified through Fohr and they go through your analytics and give you a ballpark range of what you should be making in terms of sponsored content (whether that’s in product or money, decide what you are comfortable with). Don’t continue to do things for free. That hurts the blogging community as whole. Like I said before, know your worth, know what you are willing to flex with and what you are not.

Also know that there is room at this blogging table for everyone! If you have an interest, JUMP IN and give it a try!

And on another blogging note, I’m a person who utilizes her calendar like crazy! Not only that, I also use sticky notes, the notes app, etc. I have made a commitment through the rest of this year, to post two blog posts a week, and my Erin Condren planner is holding me accountable to this commitment!

 

Shop: Planner, Sweatshirt, Leggings, Hoops

Thanks for stopping by!

I hope this post was helpful/insightful, and please let me know if there were any questions I didn’t answer!

Xx

To The Girl Who Called me Fat on Instagram

To The Girl Who Called me Fat on Instagram

Welp, the other shoe dropped. It was only a matter of time. Someone said something mean on a photo of me (insert eye-rolling emoji). This wasn’t the first time, and it certainly won’t be the last, but I want to take a moment to discuss. This isn’t a looking-for-sympathy kind of post, but rather, it’s an I am Woman, HEAR ME ROAR (and get out of my way) kind of thing.

I wanted to break down what happened for you to shed some light on the armpit that is internet trolling, and what you can glean from my experience.

Let me set the scene for you. It was Sunday afternoon when a photo of me got reposted by a popular account that I’m affiliated with that has 3 MILLION followers. I was SO EXCITED and had a “Mama, I made it” moment! The love and encouragement came immediately from friends and family, both in real life and virtually! I responded to every comment and engaged with the amazing outpouring of support – it could probably go without saying, but, I was on CLOUD NINE! It wasn’t about the likes and followers I received from this post, it was the feeling of accomplishment. Sometimes, as a curvy gal on a public platform, you can feel overlooked. Change is a’happening though, and it’s been awesome to bear witness and participate in the growing inclusivity among brands and the influencer circuit.

Cut to Tuesday and on the post, one comment stood out among the rest. A conversation between two friends. One said, “still think you’re fat?”, to which the other responded with the laughing emojis and something to the effect of, “you’re right”. Ouch. I mean, great you’re lifting your friend up, but at what expense? Shaming another. Later on, comments popped up telling the girls to buzz off the enormously positive post, and the original commenter posted again and called me “unhealthy” and that we should read about cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, cholesterol, etc. Ugh. How easy it is to cast judgement based on an appearance, isn’t it? Nevermind the cute denim dress I had on, or the big smile I was wearing. All she saw was size.

At the end of the day, she doesn’t know me. She doesn’t know that I’m on thyroid medication trying to find the right dosage, she doesn’t know I get steroid shots every couple of months for a back injury, she doesn’t know the hell I went through 18 months ago and crawled my way out of, she doesn’t know the grief, anxiety, and stress my heart and head endured coming across the deceased body of someone close to my family. Again, she doesn’t know me. I do not list these things out as reasons for my weight, but explaining that even through these struggles, I work at happiness and for the most part, I find it. If I can put on a good face each and every day and influence others to do the same, who honestly gives a shit what the size on my dress says? I have thick thighs and I don’t have a flat stomach. Does that somehow make me less than?

I don’t have to explain myself, my size, or a damn thing really to her or anyone else out there, but she should know this, stranger or not: I am a good person with a big heart who loves to celebrate in others’ joy, who is just trying to live my best life one day (and one fabulous outfit) at a time, just like the rest of us. And I know what kindness costs. NOTHING, it’s FREE. The good thing about this? It’s easy for me (and relatively decent people) to be kind. And I know what I stand for. I stand for finding happiness, staying positive, and leaving a lasting mark of care, humor, and support on the people I encounter regularly. I also stand for embracing ourselves at every stage and every size. And if someone can’t get behind that message, then that’s just too damn bad. I wish them something far more interesting to do in their lives than putting others down with a few keystrokes.

I hope you know I’m not sad about the comment or feeling bad about myself. I’m as confident as always. I want you, reader – whoever you are, if you’ve experienced this too, know that you’re strong. Ugly words from a stranger? Bear them no mind. When we breathe nothing into them, they die pretty quickly.

This experience provided me an opportunity to use my voice to bring awareness to the fact that this happens every. single. day. around the world. Too skinny, too big, too dark, too light. You know you’ve seen it. If we’d just stop tearing each other down, women would honestly run the world. What a powerful thought.

And now, so I’m not a total downer on this reflective post, here’s a new look you haven’t seen yet. Scroll to the bottom to shop.

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Shop: Top, Jeans (similar), Shoes, Bag, Necklace, Earrings

If one person benefited from reading this today, it will have done its job. Thanks for stopping by!

 

Fab in Fabletics

Hey all and happy Tuesday!

Over the last several months, I’ve felt groggy, less energized, and not like myself. I recently went to the doctor and got my thyroid checked (if you didn’t know, I have hypo-thyroid disease) – it was off, and now that my medication has been adjusted, I’m getting myself back on track, in all facets.

Over the last six weeks, I’ve been getting in the gym regularly and it’s been feeling great! I’m up to three days in the gym.

Day 1: 10 minutes of cardio warm-up, 3 sets of arm weights (12 reps each set), 20 more minutes of cardio

Day 2: 10 minutes of cardio warm-up, 3 sets of leg/ab work (12 reps of each set) squats with a 6-8 pound medicine ball, stomach twists with medicine ball, medicine ball toss with squats, 20-second planks (3 for the first set, 2 for the second set, 1 for the 3rd set), 20 minutes of cardio

Day 3: 30 minutes of cardio

Scroll through to see some photos of a collaboration with Fabletics

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Shop: Sweatshirt, Leggings, Shoes

Thanks for stopping by and your support, always!