Favorite Nail Polishes Of November 2019 (With Pictures)

If you’ve read my post on how to look good from head to toe, then you know that painting my nails is something I do often! I just love to have a fresh coat of polish on my nails. It ties your whole look together and makes you look sharp. So I thought I’d share with you guys some of my favorites that I’ve been keeping in my rotation. Every time I paint my nails, it’s always with one of these colors or sometimes I mix and match them. I feel like these colors are so bright and happy but still go with all the clothes in my wardrobe. Just for reference, I have an autumn skin tone. I have warm, yellow undertones and I look best in olive greens, burgundy, mustard yellow, peach orange, light pink, brown, gold, and the like. So these nail polishes will suit you best if you have a similar skin tone. But I’m sure that even if you don’t match my exact tone that you can probably still find some here that will work with you. So with that being said, let’s get right into it.

1. Sally Hansen Insta-Dri #652 “Leaf Lined Trail” (peach)

This peach color is just so so pretty to me. It’ actually been a favorite of mine lately. It has gold in it too which gives it a nice shimmer. It’s a color that would go especially well in the summer or fall time. There’s not much more I can say about it. It’s just a really happy color that I feel can coordinate well with so many outfits.

2. Sally Hansen Color Therapy #300 “Soak At Sunset” (shimmering coral)

This is another favorite of mine. It’s a neutral coral with gold shimmer. It’s a toned down orange so it can work with many other colors and pieces in your wardrobe. I love the orange tone for summer. It’s such a pretty and soft color. I love it so much that I’m already on to my second bottle!

3. Sally Hansen Insta-Dri #273 “Pink Blink” (bubblegum pink)

I call this one a bubble gum pink because it reminds me of exactly that. I think every girl needs a signature go-to pink polish and this is the one for me. It’s a true pink so it’s not going to be one of those that are so light they look white. It’s just pretty and classic and I love it.

4. Essie #216 “Splash of Grenadine” (orchid)

This next color just makes me so happy and I don’t know why. I was first inspired when I saw my mother-in-law wear this exact color and I just thought “I really like that!” And ever since then, it’s been my favorite polish (at least for the moment). I especially love to wear it when I have on leopard print. I don’t know what it is, it just pairs so well together. You should definitely give this one a try.

5. Jordana #675 “Pink Hearts” (sparkle with hearts)

This polish makes my heart so happy too! That may sound weird to you guys, but really, it’s the little things that get me excited. These little pink hearts just remind me so much of middle school for some reason. It’s very nostalgic for me. I layer this on top of any color I’m wearing. It’s just a light sparkle with a pink heart here and there. It’s very subtle but very cute.

6. Wet n’ Wild Wild Shine #C473B “Blazed” (coral)

This is another coral color but unlike the more neutral one above, this one is more bright, bold, and orange. I love both of them but sometimes you may want a more subtle look and sometimes a bold one. This is definitely the bolder option. It’s nothing too crazy, but it is noticeably brighter. I love it though. It’s such a happy color to me.

7. Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Top Coat (quick dry)

And last, but certaintly not least, is this quick-dry top coat. It has now been a staple in my nail collection. There is nothing worse then spending so much time painting your nails just to have them get messed up because you bumped into something and they weren’t fully dry. It’s so annoying! Especially now that I’m a mom, I don’t have 2 hours to wait till my nails are dry before I can start using my hands. But with this top coat, they dry almost instantly. You do have to be careful at first of course, but if you bump into something, they wont automatically be ruined. I feel what helps the most is if you do a thin layer with each polish you use. Then your nails will dry so much quicker.

So what do you guys think? Did you like these new polishes? Please let me know in the comments below some of the ones you’re loving right now, hopefully some that are more compatible with winter. I also have been wanting to try a neon green. It just seems like such a beautiful and vibrant color and one that (again) would go well with my leopard print๐Ÿ˜‚. I can’t wait to share with you guys all the new colors I find this season. It’s fun. If you guys like posts like this one, please make sure to give a like so I can write more. Thank you.

Till next time,

Paula Moral

How To Look Good From Head To Toe

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always looked a mess. I was overweight with cystic acne all along my jaw and down my neck, my hair was always a frizzy mess, and I sometimes suffered with b.o. I would always look up to the beautiful women who always seemed to have it together. They were poised, confident, so fashionable and cool. Everyone wanted to be their friend. I always knew though that I had it in me to be just as great. So from the age of 12 years old, I started my transformation. It has been 10 years in the making but I now can share with you all how I’ve learned to look good from head to toe. Here’s how I learned to be the most confident version of myself:

  1. We’ll start from the top and work our way down. So first thing is your hair. You’re going to want to learn how to style it. Whether you want to use hot tools or keep it au natural is up to you. Just learn how to work with your hair and style it in a way so it doesn’t look frizzy. I personally like to use hot tools for my hair. I only do it twice a week and wash my hair every 3 days. I’ll usually use a curling iron for voluminous waves but when I’m in the mood for it, I’ll use a straightener. You’ll also want to make sure to take good care of your hair too. Do deep conditioning treatments once a week, use a protectant when using hot tools, be kind to your hair, not rough. Damaged hair does not look good and there’s not much you can do when it’s severely damaged except grow it out. There’s also no way of hiding damaged hair so make sure to prevent it and take good care of it now. Also, only dye it a color that is compatible with your skin tone and that is only 3 shades lighter or darker than your natural hair color. That’ll help prevent extreme damage and will help your hair to look more natural. But of course, you don’t need to dye your hair at all. The key is healthy, smooth hair.
  2. Next we’ll move on to our face. You’re gonna want to go to YouTube for this one and start watching some makeup tutorials. I only had to watch a few to get some game changing tips that have helped my makeup to look more professional. What I’ve learned too is that your products make a BIG difference when it comes to the way you’re makeup will turn out. I never thought so. I always thought that they were basically all the same. For example, you might think you have no eyelashes, but it may just be that you’re using the wrong mascara. At least that was the case for me. I always thought I had bad lashes but after switching my mascara, now my lashes are the main thing people always compliment me on. My favorite brand is NYX for makeup. They give you professional results at drugstore prices and I’ve recently learned that if you buy them on amazon, they’re always cheaper…like 50% so! So there’s a little tip for ya ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’ll make a separate post where I get into all my staple products so you don’t have to waste time and money trying so many different ones and you can skip right to the good stuff. But trust me, upgrading your makeup routine is a game changer! It’ll make you look so much more put together and will make you feel so confident- it’s a must on my list!
  3. Next we’ll talk about your ears or more specifically, earrings. You don’t have to wear earrings, but I always do. I never leave the house without them. I personally am a big hoops girl (it’s just the Latina in me lol) But I feel like even if you have small little studs in, they can help you look so much more fashionable. I’ve also been getting into hair accessories. I like cheetah print head scarves or scrunchies with bows on them. It’s so simple but those little touches really help level up your outfit and tie everything together. I think dainty necklaces are another really nice touch. They’re so feminine and delicate and really spice up any outfit. Don’t be afraid to experiment with scarves or different handbags too. You can find such a great variety and for really cheap too.
  4. Since, we’re working our way down to the underarm area, let’s talk about b.o (other wise known as body odor). So it’s simple: take a shower everyday, wash your clothes weekly and don’t wear anything that has a foul smell. You’re clothes don’t have to be expensive to look good. What’s most important is that they’re clean, smell fresh, don’t have stains, and preferably wrinkle free. Please use deodorant and don’t forget it. Carry a travel one with you as a mid-day refresher. we all need it sometimes, it’s nothing to be embarrassed about. And as a bonus, a body spray or perfume helps for you to have a nice feminine scent that people will smell when you walk passed. It’s a nice touch. Also, please moisturize any dry, visible parts of your body (legs, knees, elbows) and please, oh please, if you’re feet are going to be exposed, moisturize those as well. I can’t stand dry, cracked heels. I’m sorry, it’s just a pet peeve of mine. It’s so easy to fix too and does not look good at all when you walk around like that. So please, for my sake, don’t do it. And I know all this sounds pretty simple, but you’d be surprised by how many adults have b.o. Oh and don’t forget to brush your teeth, carry mints or gum with you as a mid-day pick me up to freshen up. And if you always have bad breath, talk to your doctor. It may be something you’re eating or an underlying issue that your doctor may be able to help you with.
  5. Next, we’ll move on to your bra. You’d be surprised at what a difference wearing the right bra can make. If you wear one that’s too small, you may have spillage in the cup area or back bulge squeezing out around the straps. If it’s too big, then it can cause a lot of weird gaping, especially around the cup area. So get sized. You can do it yourself at home. I finally, after about 10 years or so of wearing bras, have finally figured out my correct size! So now my bra outline can’t be seen through my shirt and it’s so much more comfortable to wear.
  6. Now, we’ll talk about clothes. I always feel it’s best to have a certain color scheme with your wardrobe. I tend to have more of an autumn skin tone so in my closet you’ll see a lot of peach, burnt orange, burgundy, olive green, brown, ivory, mustard yellow, blush pink, tones. Having a color scheme with your wardrobe means that you’ll easily be able to mix and match certain pieces since they all work well together. So you’ll be able to have a few pieces but make many outfits from them. Try to find clothes that flatter your figure too. Of course you don’t have to, but there will be some pieces that will look better on you than others (just like with anyone else).
  7. Next we’ll move onto your legs, or more specifically, body hair. So you’l want to make sure you’re shaving often. Everyone’s hair grows at different rates but for me, I pretty much start shaving whenever I see that stubble is starting to form. I want to be as smooth, feminine, and dainty as possible. That means no body hair (including facial, underarm, leg, thigh…you name it.)
  8. Next, we’ll talk about our feet. I think it’s important to have your feet freshly pedicured year round. That doesn’t mean you have to get it done professionally or even that your nails have to always be painted (if that’s not you’re thing). But it does mean that your nails should always be cleaned, trimmed, dead skin and callouses removed, file down anything that needs it, and overall just have smooth, clean feet. I think uncared for feet are very unattractive to just about anyone. And it can be something fun to do. I like to do mine in the night when my daughter’s already asleep. I put my show on, relax, and paint my nails my favorite color of the moment.
  9. Now we’ll touch on weight and fitness. I know that this can be a touchy subject. So this part will just be for those who already do want to lose weight. I personally have always been on the overweight side as I’ve mentioned. I’ve lost 40 pounds as a teenager. I always held on to 10-15 more even after that though. And after I had my daughter I had like 15 more that I had gained. So of the 25 that I’ve held onto after having giving birth, I’ve already lost 15 of it during these past few months and am working on losing the 10 that remains. I have simply been counting calories with the my fitness pal app and doing HIIT workouts 3x a week. But let me just tell you, losing weight is what really makes me feel the most confident of everything on this list. If you’re overweight, you can’t really hide it. No matter what you wear, people will be able to tell if you have a fit and trim body or if you don’t. You can’t hide it. So above all I think if you are overweight, then losing it will make you feel the best about yourself. And I’m not saying to do it in an unhealthy, obsessive way. There are healthy ways of doing it (in my opinion). I’ve been losing just one pound a week and although it’s painfully slow, I know that it’s working so I just need to be patient and stick with it. It’s when people start to become impatient and want to rush the process that they start going about it in an unhealthy way, with crash diets, laxative teas, and the like. And also I’ll just say, I’ve been working out for 10+ years doing everything from heavy weights, Pilates, cardio machines, etc…, and I just have to say that HIIT has been the best by far. You get quick results, you’re able to lose fat, keep your curves, and put on muscle, all while only working out 30 minutes max. So if you’re looking for a new workout routine, I would start off with trying that.

I hope that these tips were helpful for you guys and not at all offensive. I try to be honest while at the same time being sensitive to the feelings of others. This is the truth, this is how i got to be to where I am today. It’s not to hurt anyone’s feelings but to give you the answers that many have asked me. Which of these tips did you guys find the most useful? Which ones would you add? I’d love to hear from you.

Till next time,

Paula Moral

How To Save Up To Buy A House

Buying a house may be closer to your reach than you think. It’s all just a matter of controlling your money and making it work for you. In today’s article, I want to share with you the top 5 tips that have helped us save. I hope these will help you guys too so you can start this new, exciting chapter in your life.

1. My first tip would be to find the cheapest grocery store to buy your food. We previously did our grocery shopping at Trader Joe’s (a health food store) but that would easily bring our total price to $200 and sometimes more per week. And we’re just a family of two adults and a toddler! I searched around to see what stores had the best prices for food. It turns out that Walmart has some of the best prices. So I now do the majority of my grocery shopping there. But…surprise, surprise…the 99 cent store actually has a whole lot of produce all for $1! When I shop there, we save $70 a week which adds up to $280 a month! That’s a whole lot of money to save on just one bill! And trust me, I was skeptical about dollar store food too. But we have already tried it for 2 weeks and everything tastes just fine. Nothing spoiled right away or anything. So just give it a try. Maybe you’ll like it too.

2. Another area where we’re saving money is on our electric bill. Im so sorry to say but we used to live with our AC going non-stop! Its so embarrassing to admit. But now, we’re rarely using it and only put it on when the heat is getting to be just too much to handle. Turning on the AC is now a last resort for us. We’ll open the windows, turn off the lights, close the blinds, take a cool shower, turn the fans on, we’ll do all that before we finally decided to turn on the AC. We haven’t gotten the bill back yet but i imagine that we’ll be saving anywhere from $100 – $150 a month minimum. I’ll try to update you guys once we get the actual numbers back.

3. We also limit eating out now to only once a week. That’s something I had already been doing for a while now just for weight loss reasons but now my husband is jumping on board too. So he no longer will order out for lunch while he’s at work. But I take responsibility for making sure he has meals so he won’t have to eat out. If I miss a day for packing his lunch, I wont blame him if he does have to eat out. But its rare that that’ll happen. Lately I’ve been making a lot of crockpot meals so we’ll have leftovers for lunch the next day. I’ve also been focusing on making delicious recipes so he wont miss eating out over the weekends. Often times before, we would go to Jamba Juice and buy a smoothie but now if we’re craving a smoothie, we’ll just make one at home. Its a whole lot cheaper that way. And you’d be surprised how much it adds up when you’re eating out.

4. My next tip is to look through the coupons you get sent to your door. Before we wouldn’t even bother and would just throw them out right away. ( I know, we were super wasteful :/ ) but now I take the time to look through them. I’m not a super couponer or anything so you won’t see me at the store taking out a binder of coupons (not that that’s a bad thing, I’m just not at that level). But if I do see a coupon for something that we use on a regular basis or for eating out, I’ll make sure to save it. For example, just last week I found a coupon for a free pizza. There were no strings attached either, we didn’t have to buy anything else. So last Friday for our day of eating out, we literally spent $0 on dinner. That was amazing to me and quite exhilarating to be honest lol๐Ÿ˜„

5. I’ve also been loving no spend weeks. I often will just do one week at a time and then the following week I will let myself buy something that I’ve been wanting (home decor, makeup, etc…) But lately I’m doing no spend months (since we’ll be moving into our new home in a little over a month) and I want us to save up as much as possible so we can have enough to make the renovations on the house that we’re wanting. I have been loving the challenge of not spending any money though. It really forces me to get creative and to find local events that are going on for free. It makes me do more hands on and nature things with my daughter. It’s been so nice and its getting easier over time. This is now my third week in a row of not spending any money on personal things and I’ve been so proud of myself for it.

As we’ve gone over the numbers to see if we can afford a house, I’ve realized that we’ve had the money all along but because of our mindless spending, the money would just slip through our fingers and in the end we wouldn’t have enough for anything else because we had spent it all on meaningless stuff. But spending like we were was just keeping us in the same situation of living in a small outdated apartment that we really didn’t want to be in. I’m so happy that we’re finally taking control of our money so we can really do the things we want with it and not just waste it. It makes me feel so good too as a stay at home mom because I know that I’m helping my family save TONS just by spending smarter. Sometimes us stay at home moms can feel like we’re not contributing enough to the family but I can see now that I am. By being more mindful with our money, I’m enabling us to be able to buy our own home. If it wasn’t for that, we’d always be stuck in the same boat. Because even if I went out and got a job, with our reckless spending, we still wouldn’t have any money left over.

This experience has helped me to see that we need to be in control of our money so we can take it in the direction we want to go. It all comes down to priorities and about what you want most. If you really want a house, then making these changes won’t be such a big deal. But if you rather have stuff, then that’s OK but just know that you may not be able to save for other things. I hope these tips will help you guys with getting a rein on your money so that you can soon move into a home of your own. It’s such an exciting, new chapter in our lives and I cant wait to share all the details, home decor, remodels, and DIYs that we do on the place. Which tip did you find the most helpful? And if you have any tips of your own, please let me know in the comments below. I’ll take all the help I can get!๐Ÿ˜„

Till Next Time,

Paula Moral

The Pros And Cons Of Living In California (Raw And Real)

Moving to California seems to equate success in most people eyes. That’s the way it’s portrayed in the movies and when my friends and family found out I was living here, they all said ‘good for you’. People really view it as if you’re moving up in the world once you’re living here. Let me make it clear, I love living in California for so many reasons (which we’ll get into) but it wasn’t exactly what I expected when I first came here. So I thought I’d share with you all the reality of living in the Golden state just in case you’re thinking of moving here too.

  1. Pro: My very first pro (and it’s my favorite) is all the sun we get here! It truly is the sunshine state. I’m one of those people who thrive on natural sunlight. I’ll actually start getting a little depressed if I don’t get enough. But that is no issue here at all! All day, everyday the sun is out, bright, and beaming. And I love it! It seriously makes me so happy. I cannot say enough good things about the sunshine we get. We do of course have rainy days too with overcast, but in my opinion, it’s not that often at all. I actually like those days too so it doesn’t really bother me.
  2. Con: You have to drive really far to get most places (at least from where we live). I personally live close to the state’s capital, Sacramento, so we’re right in the middle of California. To put it in perspective for you, we have to drive 2 hours to get to San Francisco, 7 hours to get to San Diego, 5.5 hours to get to L.A, and 2 hours to get to Yosemite. That may not seem so bad to you, depending on where you’re from, but for me, coming from Massachusetts, that was a huge shock. Back home, everything is less than an hour away. You could literally be in another city in 15 mins and our beach was only half an hour away. So when I first moved here, I did not want to go anywhere because I couldn’t stand the long drives. I just had never done that before. But now I’m getting more used to it. The longest drive we’ve done is 4 hours and I’m sure I’ll be able to do even longer trips soon enough.
  3. Pro: There are different climates for everyone here. If you prefer the colder weather and some snow, you can choose to live up north in the sierras. If you like it hot, come to the valley. And if you want more of a cool and breezy, overcast climate, then the bay area is the place for you. You can basically find a place that is just right for you right here in California. Whatever specific climate preferences you have, they can all be met here.
  4. Con: It is sooo expensive to live here. To give you some perspective, we live in a not so safe city and yet to rent a modern, average sized home you’re looking to pay $2500! Or you can rent a house that’s not so up to date and remodeled for $2000. And again, we’re not living in an amazing city or anything like that. So just imagine if you were living in San Fran or L.A (one of the more popular cities)? It was reported that in San Francisco, a person making six-figures is considered to be in poverty…and that’s no joke! They’re barely getting by on that six-figure salary simply because their city is just so expensive! It’s to the point that if prices get any higher, we’re unfortunately thinking of moving out of state!
  5. Pro: We have some of the most amazing places to see here. I’ve mentioned them before (San Fran, L.A, San Diego, etc..) but you don’t have to go very far to see them and they’re all right here in California.
  6. Con: Because California is so expensive, you may end up having to live in a not so safe neighborhood (because it’s all you can afford). Since California is a more densely populated state, there’s more crime. Now, I personally have never been a victim of said crime, our close group of friends haven’t either but you definitely hear about it in the news. I don’t think you should let that scare you from moving to California but I think it’s just something to keep in mind.
  7. Pro: There are so many hipster and modern places here. From our new juice bars, boba cafes, and more vegan restaurants popping up, California is very much alive with the times. I love being able to try new and exciting places to not only eat but also shop. There are also so many craft shows too where people make and sell their own handmade goods.
  8. Con: We do not all live on the beach. This is a big one, but basically California isn’t exactly what you see in the movies. We don’t all have the beach in our backyard and surf all day. It may seem silly but I really believed that’s how California would be, based on what I saw on TV. You definitely can still find beautiful beaches here but we don’t all live by the coast. Like I mentioned, I live in the middle of California so it’s more city life than anything else. But going down south is where you’ll find the coast and all the beautiful beaches. So just expect that not everywhere you visit here will look like the movies.
  9. Pro: Hollywood! I’ve never personally been there yet but if you are looking to make it in the entertainment field, then California is the place for you. This is in fact where a lot of TV and music is produced so if you want to be a part of that, then it’s good to go right to the source.
  10. Con: There are dozens of homeless people here. Now before anyone gets mad I just want to say, I don’t have anything against someone who lives on the streets. That’s not the problem. What the problem is for me is that a majority of the homeless people here are on drugs or are alcoholics. They tend to lash out and do crazy things because they are under the influence. That’s when it gets dangerous. Living back home in Massachusetts, in all my 18 years of living there, I had only seen 2 homeless people. Coming to California, now that’s a whole other story. I have seen maybe probably about 30 that I’ve seen in passing with but there is also an area where they all set up camp and it’s probably close to 80 people or more who live there. Again, I have nothing against them as individuals. I know they’re people too. I just have a problem with how the drugs and alcohol affect them. There have been occasions where there were people walking around high in Target (and one time they were actually doing the drugs IN the store) and they had to be escorted out because they were yelling and getting mad at the customers and wanting to start fights. That’s when it starts to involve passerby’s and can be a danger for us.

So there you have it: my pros and cons of living in California. I bet there were probably some you never knew about before. I hope my cons didn’t scare you guys from wanting to move here. I honestly love it and I think for me my favorite part is all the sun we get here. I just soak in all the sunshine and it makes me happy. Let me know in the comments below which pro or con that was most surprising to you. Would you still move here? I do hope so ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope you guys enjoyed this article and as always, I’ll see you in my next one. Bye!

Paula

The Problem With Living Your Best Life

I’m sure by now so many of you have heard the phrase “live your best life”. A motto like that has good intentions I’m sure. But the more I see that way of thinking affecting people today (youths especially), the more I’m starting to feel that a phrase like that just does more harm than good. Let me explain…

I have seen that this motto of living your best life is actually starting to make a lot of people stressed out and feel under pressure. It creates this way of thinking that if at any moment you are unhappy with anything in your life, you need to drop it immediately because it’s keeping you from living your best life. It’s causing us, especially as a generation, to not work as hard as those before us. It’s as if we no longer want to have to endure the hard work that comes along with so many good things in life because why go through that if it’s not “your best life”. Here are some examples.

Take marriage for instance. In prior generations, marriage actually meant something. It was a lifelong commitment to your partner; a promise that even when things got rough, you would still stick it out and work through those it all. But now, we are so quick to give up! If we don’t feel constantly infatuated and in love with our partner, we want to end it. Instead of having that enduring love for our partners, we are so quick to give up because in that moment, we are not “living our best life”. We think, “why go through this if I can just end it and be with someone else who I don’t have problems with”. The thing is though, sooner or later we will start to have problems and disagreements even with that new beau. That infatuation wears off and before you know it, you’re right back where you were with your last partner. We are so quick to think about the what feels best in the moment rather than thinking about the long term consequences of our actions.

Another example is work. Before, it was long understood that you have to do the nitty-gritty, dirty work before you can make your way to the “top”. It was understood that you have to work your way up in your career which meant that you’d probably have to start out doing work that you hated. But it was worth it because there was a goal in sight and you knew that this was the way to start on your road to success. That was the understanding before but now, people just want their first job to be their dream job. They want to start out making millions. I have seen so many people that refuse to do any work (even though their dirt broke and living off their parents) simply because it’s not their dream job or not “what they want to be doing with their lives”. That is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard! It doesn’t matter if this is what you want to do with your life or not. The bottom line is you need money right now for your day to day expenses. You may have to work a retail job, a waitressing job, or at as a gas station clerk for the moment. That doesn’t mean you have to work there indefinitely. You can work on reaching your career goals on the side while you also work a not so glamorous job to get by. That’s just life. But now that we have this expectation that we have to constantly be living our best life, the thinking now is “why work at a job I hate if it’s not my best life?” And I agree that you don’t have to stay at a job that makes you miserable (at least not forever) but you may for a time have to stick it out, just until you have something else you can lean on financially. We have lost our work ethic. We no longer know how to work hard and to endure anything. We want to give up and quit so easily and it’s all because we’re basically told that we should.

Another reason why I don’t like this motto is that I feel it keeps us constantly dissatisfied. Years ago, people would appreciate their “mundane” lives. They appreciated their family unit, their home, they had a steady income, good health, basically they had all their needs met and they were satisfied. Now, we are always constantly striving to be bigger and better. We no longer are OK in a normal family home. No, now we want to live a luxurious fast lifestyle. We want fast cars, exotic trips around the world, a mansion, lots of money, we basically want the life of a celebrity. We’re no longer satisfied with the typical family life because why be satisfied with just that when you can have it all? In a way, it causes us to be greedy because we think that there’s always better out there for us. But you know what, the grass is always greener and will always be. We will always think that there is more out there that will make us happy. But having that mindset is exactly why happiness will always elude us. We will never be content and satisfied in life so we will always feel that we need to trade in our life for a bigger and better one and then we will finally be happy.

I also feel like that saying keeps us from being content with our bodies. I don’t mind people working out and trying to look their best. But I do have a problem when people are constantly going through plastic surgeries and injections, trying to obtain the “perfect” look. It’s no judgement against any person. I think if I had some extreme “flaw” that really made me self conscious, I would maybe consider getting it fixed. But most of the times that’s not what’s happening. People want to give their lips the “perfect” pout, they want to shave their nose down ever so slightly and get injections in their butt to look like a photoshopped version of a celebrity. These aren’t major “flaws”. There is nothing wrong with them to begin with. This is obsessing over your body and trying to get it to obtain a look that you can never achieve (because it’s fake). But we are told to live our best life, which at times involves doing whatever it takes to be “happy” even if it is going under risky, life threatening surgeries. But again, these things hardly ever end with someone feeling happy and satisfied with their results. It often becomes an obsession. Once they see one thing “wrong” they start noticing all these other things they’d like to fix too.

Living your best life basically makes you feel like you can never be satisfied with your current life. You must always be improving and bettering until you one day you are living your best life. It causes us to see “problems” in our life that we never saw before. We are told that we can’t be satisfied being “just a mom”, or a dad who works a normal 9-5 job and comes home to his happy family. Why settle with that when you can have a bigger and better life?

And that ladies and gentlemen is why I hate when we say “live your best life”. I understand that it has good intentions. It basically is supposed to be motivation to better yourself and your life and I am always for that. But I feel the actual outcome of trying to live by this motto is just a generation of people who are never satisfied. When ever we have problems, we just want to drop whatever is causing them and runaway from it. We no longer want to put in the work that most great things in life require. But the thing is that most of the time we have to muddle through the rough times to enjoy the good ones waiting for us on the the other side.

Let me know in the comments below what you guys think. Do you agree with my viewpoint or do you think I’m just taking it all too seriously? I would really love to hear from you and see how you guys feel about it. But until then, I’ll see you all next time. Bye!

Paula

Why The Terrible Two’s Really Aren’t So Terrible At All

Before I had my daughter, I was terrified of when she would turn 2. I would hear from everyone how kids are so crazy, throw so many tantrums and scream and fuss when they’re at that age. I was never worried about the newborn stage, the self sacrifice of being a parent, or anything like that. But I was anxious of my toddler throwing a full blown, uncontrollable fit at target that would turn everyone’s heads and that I wouldn’t be able to stop. But let me tell you why the “terrible two’s” is all one big fat lie. Toddlers don’t have to be crazy wild childs at all and I’ll tell you how you can prevent all of that from happening.

First let’s talk about when is the right time to tell your kids “no”. I would see on online forums that some moms would ask when’s the right time to say no to their kids. Now, that’s something I have never understood. So many parents would act like you can’t tell a baby no. But why? If my baby did something wrong or that wasn’t nice (say for example hitting someone) I would tell her “no, that’s not nice.” And very soon she understood that that was not acceptable behavior. I don’t know why someone would delay saying no to their child. A lot of people on that forum said that you could start saying no once your child was close to two years old. Then they would wonder why their child started acting out around that same time. But imagine getting everything you want, no one ever refusing any demands you made for 2 full years and after getting that special treatment for so long, you start getting told “no” and for so many things. I think that would make anyone frustrated, so just imagine how a toddler, who is still learning how to express their emotions, would react and feel. So my first tip is to not be afraid to tell your kids no, even when they are babies. I honestly don’t understand why someone wouldn’t want to tell their kids that a certain behavior is wrong and not OK to do. I don’t feel that that’s a mean thing to do at all. And your kids will understand what no means very soon. They are so much smarter than we even know.

My next tip would be to stick to your word. If you tell your child that if they aren’t listening then you would take a certain thing away from them, then you need to stick with that (even if it does make things more difficult for you). They need to know that when you say something, you mean it. If you don’t stick with your word, your kids won’t take what you say seriously. They’ll know that they can just negotiate their way out of things and that there’s no real consequences for their actions. And that’s just not right. That’s not the way the world works.

I was actually at my daughters gymnastics class yesterday when she had thrown a toy where it didn’t belong and with a little attitude too. I told her that she needed to pick it up and put it back where it belonged. At first she just looked at me and tried walking away. So I told her one more time that she needs to put it back where it goes or we were going to leave right then and there. So she quickly picked it up and put it away. Mind you, she’s only 2.5 years old. But she knows by now that when mom says something, she means it. That’s when one of the other moms there said “wow my son would’ve never listened to me. He would’ve just ignored me.” But that’s not right and that little boy needs to learn that that is not OK.

A lot of time, sticking with what you say can be more work for you. For example if my daughter chose not to listen at gymnastics, we would’ve had to leave. Now, I enjoy my time over there and I personally would not have wanted to leave. My daughter probably would’ve cried very loudly as we left, directing everyone’s attention to us. And no, I would not have wanted any of that. But I know that a little work now will pay off so much in the near future. You will have such a well behaved and respectful child who listens to you if you just stick to what you say. Because I put in that work when my daughter was younger, she listens so well now as a toddler.

I know of 4 year olds who still throw tantrums but when you look at the discipline that child gets, you’ll see that it’s inconsistent and they often get away with everything. Most of the time there is no discipline for that child. I’m tired of people saying that 3 year olds are worse than 2 year olds and then other people saying, ‘you think 3 is bad, just wait till they turn 4’. It’s all so ridiculous to me. I honestly believe it all boils down to the parenting: is that child getting disciplined and corrected for his wrong behavior? Are the parents talking to him and letting him know why that’s not acceptable? If not, then please don’t blame the child’s age. It really ruins it for those who have never had kids of their own. I know some people who are seriously not having kids because their scared of the terrible 2’s. If only they knew it was all a myth! I try telling them it’s not true, but there’s just so much fear focused around that age that they don’t believe me.

I hope these tips were able to help you. This is not to judge anyone’s parenting. This article is more so for parents who haven’t entered into this stage yet and are fearful over it. I want you to know that there is nothing to be worried about. I’d say, yes as a 2 year old kid will want to be more independent and you can let them do things on their own when you’re able to. Sometimes it’s just not practical or there may not be enough time. It’s OK to say no when you need to. At first your kids may get upset and cry a bit because they wanted to do it. But you can simply explain that sometimes they can do it but sometimes mama needs to do it. It should never escalate to a full blown tantrum though. And soon enough they’ll be more calm when you tell them that you need to do it this time.

(And just to clarify, when I say discipline, I do not mean beating your child. I don’t know why but some people think they mean the same thing when they absolutely do not. The majority of the time, discipline for me means taking away something my daughter would want, like her cartoons or I’ll send her to her room for literally 2 minutes so she can calm down. But I’ll always give her a warning before I take anything away and then I always explain to her afterwards why.)

Let me know what you guys thought of this article. And how do you feel? Can the “terrible 2’s” be avoided or is it just inevitable for every child? I’d love to hear from you.

Till next time,

Paula

Self Love Series-Part 1: Why It Is So Important To Wear Clothes That Fit You Right Now (And Get Rid Of Those That Don’t)

To many that may seem like a basic concept: just wear clothes that are your correct size. But for years, I and along with so many others, have been wearing the wrong size. It’s normally because we want to use it as a motivator to lose weight or because we’re too embarrassed to have to shop for larger sizes. I personally just realized right now as a 22 year old that I have been wearing clothes that were about one to two sizes too small. And I would always wonder how come my clothes always felt so tight and uncomfortable no matter how much weight I lost. I figured that as long as a certain size fit me, that meant that it was my size. So even though XS clothing would be super tight on me, I would buy it thinking that was my size. Even when I would feel terribly uncomfortable in that clothing, I wouldn’t dare size up. I feared that would just cause me to gain more and more weight and that I would just continuously size up from there. I felt that this was the size I was supposed to be so if my clothes felt tight, I would just have to lose more weight (even though the clothes never really fit me to begin with). I want to talk to you though about why I think that’s such a toxic thing to do for your self esteem especially if you’re someone like me who’s on a self love journey.

Wearing clothes that are too tight for you because you think it’ll motivate you to lose weight may be doing more harm than good. When you wear clothes that are so restrictive that it makes it hard to breath, it feels like you’re torturing yourself. And why do we do it? So that it could hopefully move us to lose weight. But doesn’t that seem like an act of hate towards our bodies, like we’re punishing ourselves? I sure feel that way. Plus, when you wear clothes that are too small, it just doesn’t look good. So not only do you not feel comfortable, you also probably don’t feel your most attractive. Why do we do that to ourselves? We then say, well when I lose the weight these clothes will finally fit better. So are we supposed to just endure our achingly tight jeans and shirt that is so small it shows off each and every roll we have? That may take months. By doing that, we send ourselves the message that we don’t deserve to feel good in what we wear or how we look until we make ourselves smaller and that’s not right.

I’ve just recently sized up in my clothing (like literally this past month) and finally got the right size for me. I was still trying to fit into the same size that I wore as a 15 year old girl even though I am now 22. My body has changed so much in that time, just as it rightfully should. In that time my hips have widen, I have grown and birthed my beautiful baby girl, and I have completed puberty. How can I expect my now grown and womanly body to still fit the same size as a young teenager? I finally bought clothes in a size medium and let me tell you, I feel 1000 times better about myself. I am so much more confident about the way I look. My clothes flatter me now. And I just generally feel so much better about myself. To be honest with you, I was scared of going up to a medium size. I wanted to stay with the label of small or extra small. It’s silly, I know, because just because your clothes have a certain label on them doesn’t mean they’re going to look good on your body type or size. Isn’t that what we all want, to look good in whatever it is we’re wearing? And the crazy thing is, depending on the brand you may have to go up or down a size. So that just goes to show that a size label is just that, a label.

By writing this article, I’m not saying that you can’t have weight loss goals or want to be a smaller size. I believe in self improvement and bettering your body with exercise and healthy eating. I just feel when self loves comes into play, it’ll help you to still strive towards those goals but in a way that is allowing you to still be kind and loving to yourself. So you won’t have to starve yourself or wear clothes that make you feel bad all in the name of weight loss. You can still lose weight but in a way that shows your body and yourself that you love you. You can do it with clean eating and exercise because those things make you feel good, and not because you hate yourself or your appearance.

So please go into your closet today and get rid of all those clothes that don’t make you feel good about yourself. It may be a process that takes some time. It all depends on how quickly you’re able to replace those clothes with new ones that are your true size. But it is definitely something that is worth doing. Stop forcing yourself to feel uncomfortable day in and day out in hopes that one day you’ll lose the weight and your small clothes will start to fit you better. You deserve to feel good now and if you did happen to lose weight later on then you could always buy yourself some new clothes then. You don’t have to wait till you’re a certain size to feel confident. You can do that right now.

I hope you enjoyed today’s article and that it was something you could take to heart. If you did like it, then please leave a comment or a like down below so I know to write more pieces like this for you guys. I hope you all have a good day and I’ll see you next time.

Thanks,

Paula Moral

My Goals For The New Year (2019)

I’m sure most people would agree that the start of a new year is the perfect time to set new goals. It’s like a fresh start to a whole new and improved you! It’s a time I look forward to because it motivates me to work hard on bettering myself. I think it’s so important that we’re constantly growing and becoming better in life and goals help you to do just that. So I thought I’d share with you my goals for this year in hopes that maybe it’ll help motivate you with your own.

1. First and foremost I really want to work on building my blog up to the point where it becomes my business. This is a goal that I’ve had for a while now but never really stuck with it. Mostly because I thought it wouldn’t work out. I was basically setting myself up for failure. But after hearing lectures from others who built a business out of their blog, I realized that all I really need to do was put in the work and be consistent with it. I believe in myself now and I know I can do anything I set my mind to. So I’m ready to put in the work.

2. Another top goal that I have is losing 20 pounds! For those that have read my previous posts on weight loss, this may seem confusing to you. I know at one point, I renounced weight loss and said I was going to just accept my body for what it was. But you know what, that didn’t work for me. I was still uncomfortable with my weight and was just acting like I was fine with it when I really wasn’t. I was tired of feeling self conscious and always feeling nervous once the warmer weather came around because I no longer could cover up. I’ve already been working on losing the weight for about 2 weeks now and I’ve seen great progress. So I just want to make sure that I stick with it until I’m happy and confident with my body (which I’m guessing will be around 20 pounds lost).

3. I want to continue working out consistently at least 3x a week. I used to work out really consistently before I had my daughter, who is now 2 years old. It’s not her fault at all, I just think I’m more tired now and busy so it just takes more of an effort to get it done. Since she’s been born, I’ll have spurts of working out for a whole month but then I’ll stop and won’t exercise again till months later. So I just want to be more consistent with it during this new year because I know I’d make great progress. I’ve been working out now for about a month and a half so I want to make sure that I stay with it and that this isn’t just another one of those months where I workout hard and then don’t do anything for a while. 

4. Along with goal #1, I want to take classes, read books, and watch videos on growing my blog and becoming a better writer. I want this to be my profession so I really want to take it serious and educate myself so I can become the best that I can be.  

5. I’d like to also expand on the recipes I make for dinner too. I think I cook really good and my husband agrees too but I just want to shake it up a bit. We tend to eat chicken (or any other kind of meat), rice or couscous, and roasted veggies or salad. It’s really yummy and I love eating those kind of meals but I also know that it can get boring eating the same thing everyday. I’ve tried changing it up in any way I can, by using different grains, meat, and veggies. But we’ve pretty much tried every variation you can think of so we just need some new recipes in general to help us out. 

6. I also want to switch all (or at least most of) my makeup and beauty products to natural ones. My main reason being that conventional beauty products have been known to have carcinogens, hormone disruptors, and so much more junk and it’s all making us sick. This is something I’ve been knowing for a while now. I started switching my products back when I was pregnant with my daughter. It was more important to me then since I wanted to make sure that she was able to develop as healthy as possible. But once she was born and things got busy with a new baby, that all kind of took a back seat in my priorities. Lately, I haven’t been feeling well, like my hormones are not right. So I’m doing all that I can to get them balanced and cleaning up my beauty products is a huge part in that.  And if we can prevent ourselves from getting sick or developing certain diseases, then why not do it?

7. I also want to choose to watch more documentaries and educational things on TV too. I just want to constantly be learning new things and expanding my mind. It’s good for you too, just to constantly be learning new things and challenging your brain. I don’t want to waste my time watching reality TV shows and sitcoms. Those are fun and entertaining and I definitely will continue to watch those, but I also want to make sure that I’m taking the time to actually learn new things too.

8. Another big goal of mine is to save up enough money so that we can visit Massachusetts this year. That is my home and it always will be. I miss everything about Massachusetts. The city I lived in was filled with mainly Dominican people which is also my family’s nationality so it just feels like family no matter who I talk to over there. I miss that and I miss the culture, the sense of humor of the people, the greenery, and of course I miss my friends and family. I just feel like a part of me is missing and was left behind in Massachusetts and until I go back, that part of me will just remain empty. I can’t wait to simply get reconnected and back in touch with my roots. It’ll also be the first time that my daughter will be visiting my hometown so that’ll be really exciting. I think it’ll feel so nostalgic taking her to see all my favorite childhood spots. I can’t wait!

So what do you think? These are pretty much my main goals for this upcoming new year. Are any of yours similar to mine? Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope you enjoyed this post and that you were able to get a little something out of it.

Till next time,

Paula

About Me

Hey everyone and welcome to my blog! My name is Paula and I am the creator of “The Ever Blooming”. I thought you might like to get to know me a little bit so I thought I’d start this “About Me” page.

I currently live in CA but I grew up in MA. I ended up here in Cali because I got married and my husband already lived here. I got married young and then had my first and only daughter soon after. I don’t regret that decision though, it’s just one that worked for me and my personality.

I am a very artistic person who also loves math, which I hear is usually an odd combination. I love to read and write so much that I always dreamed of being an author when I was little. I also love animals and was pretty certain for years that I was going to be a vet (until I learned I would have to perform surgery!)

I tend to be very mellow and laid back. Kids in high school would even jokingly say “do you ever get mad?” The answer is yes, yes I do๐Ÿ˜ I’m more of a quiet person, but not shy. I love to be around people and listen to them speak, but I just don’t like it when I’m expected to carry most of the conversation.

That’s a little bit about me. I could share a lot more but I just don’t know ifyou’d be interested in hearing all that…lol. But if you guys have anything else you’d like to know, just let me know in the comments below and I’ll be sure to answer them. ๐Ÿ˜Š Hope you enjoyed!