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{Fitness} A Cool Fitness App For Easy Workouts During The Holiday Season

Hey Delights!

OK ladies, I know we all are getting busier & a little more excited for the holidays. Our calendars are filling up. Thanksgiving is around the corner. And it is all can be so fun but it can also be a bit stressful. And if you’re like me, you still want to get some movement & workouts in somehow because you know that they help to keep you sane in the midst of all the fa la la la la. Right?

So I was at the gym last night for an hour and I got a run in, which I had not done in forever. But I was thinking about how when it’s cold it’s usually a lot harder to get to the gym. I ended up at there because it is close to my chiropractor‘s office so I figured OK, I’ll get an adjustment and go to the gym.  But real talk, I would not have gone to the gym had I not been a couple of blocks away.

So I knew that I need something easier. Because besides getting the motivation to go outside in the elements, there is of course the challenge of time.  I think a lot of us are always feeling like we don’t have enough time and looking for ways to get more out of each day.
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{What I Wore} Red Fit & Flare

Hey Delights!

I have written about this many times about heart disease and how it has affected me and my family but it bears repeating over & over again that heart disease & stroke are the #1 KILLERS OF WOMEN.  And while Go Red For Women Day was a big day of national awareness, the American Heart Association is a cause we can & should support year round.

I own lots of red dresses but of course you can never have too many, so as I mentioned here, I made a quick Macy's run (who is having a sweet Valentine's Day sale) and purchased this fit and flare dress.
Dress | Metal Shell Clutch: Vintage (similar) | Shoes: Christian Siriano for Payless (old - similar) | Lippie: Milani


{What I Wore} Working My Curves #CurvesDefined

Hey Delights!

I am pretty much back in the full swing of things and that includes getting back into my #CurvesDefined workout groove. Yesterday I pulled out one of my favorite workout sets (last seen here) and hit the gym.

Pants: Ideology I also have a matching jacket | Top: Festa Sports (c/o) | Asics Trainers (under $30!!!)

I have pretty much lived in the Ideology plus size active wear line at Macy's for a few years now.  I love that they have such a great variety of styles and lots of coordinating pieces because as we all know, what you are wearing when working out really can up your mojo.


{Five Fab} Things I Am Looking Forward to In February

Sooo..I somehow manged to delete this and another post from this date, so this is a complete recreation from memory and mama is getting old, so my memory is not always so great...bwaa...Thankfully I hadn't read them on bloglovin, so I was able to get the entire text for the other one there but for this one, I only got the part before "the jump" but I do have the events in my calendar already & pictures to aid the rewrite process...anyway...use this a reminder to backup your site daily!

Happy February Delights!

I have a love/hate relationship with February. I hate that the Winter weather here in Chicago is usually at it's most brutal in February and how it can really wear me down. But there is also so much to love. Of course it's Black History Month and there is that little holiday, Valentine's Day.

Valentine's Day sometimes gets such a bad rap. But I think it is a wonderful, love filled, colorful break from the darkness of Winter & a reminder that it won't last forever. And this year I am rethinking my Valentine's Day fashion and red, as much as I love it, is nowhere in the picture. Stay tuned.

How sweet is this Valentine's Day setup that Joe surprised me with for a previous Valentine's celebration? It still makes me smile...like HARD cheesin'. It was so thoughtful and so perfectly me.
This year's Black History Month feels more important than ever to me & I will be taking in as many events and activities related to it as possible. Here are a few of the events that I am planning to check out:

Pearl Cleage's Blues For An Alabama Sky at the Court Theatre


{Events} TheFitExpo Chicago 2016 Details & A Hookup!

Hey Fabs!

I attended TheFitExpo Chicago during it's inaugural run last year not really knowing what to expect but it turned out to be a really good time.

I got to work out with & be totally inspired by "Mr. Taebo" himself, Billy Blanks. I mean seriously this is just a short clip but he WORKED us in this class and I loved every minute of it.

I also got to see the most pumped displays of fitness & physical strength and shop some cool brands, so of course I will be there this year to do it all over again! And because I think you will love it, if you are in the Chicago-land area, I got a little something for you...check it out below!

Plus Size {Fashion} Pick of The Day: Marble Print Workout Wear + Fit Notes #PlusSizePick

As my #CurvesDefined journey continues, I am always looking for cute workout gear because I am definitely one of those people who gets a little more gym mojo when I am rocking fun pieces.

The fabs at Forever21+ sent these new plus size marble print workout pieces from their new Ashley Graham fronted campaign to me a couple of weeks ago and as I mentioned in my instagram post, I wanted to share a bit about the fit. So here you go.

I am a 44DDD, so there is rarely a workout top that I can just throw on and go with. I always need a bra with a lot of hold. So, this medium impact sports bra, which btw has removable cups and a super cute contrast crisscross back design would need to be backed up with another bra for my girls. Of course if you are less busty, you may be able to rock it solo.

The stretch knit capri leggings have a nice amount of structure to them, which is a huge requirement for me when it comes to workout wear. I need my pieces to hold a girl up & down and I would say these offer a medium hold.

Shop this look HERE!

Check out the previous #plussizepicks HERE!

Reading this on a mobile phone? Click "view web version" to comment!

{Five Fab} Ways to Break The Winter Slog

Hey Fabs!

Am I the only one who thinks that December & January are like the sun and the moon? In December even if it's cold, everything is glitzy and festive and glam but come January, especially in the cities that really experience real winter, like here in Chicago, everything gets soooo bleak.

And that's a bummer because these cold months are the ones where we really NEED all the sparkle and bling uplifting to make it thru all the harshness.

And with the below zero temps we are having, a girl tends to be buried in layers and cloaked in dark colors and super into hibernating, which is why there has only been one OOTD post so far this month..sigh.

But it hit me the other day...I aint going out like that!  I refuse to let winter drag me down into dullsville any longer, so let Operation Break The January Slog begin.

Here are five things I will be doing:

1. Of course shaking things up via beauty is one of the easiest tweaks you can make, so I will be rocking my brightest nail polish shades, like the ones below from my pampering party & lippies and even werking some new eye shadow looks to keep things fresh and bright.


{Body Positive} The Power of Your Words

When I started on my journey of self-love, one of the first things I decided on was that I would change the words I used to speak to myself. You see, my lovelies, words are powerful and when wielded in the wrong manner they can cause irreversible harm, but when they are used with honesty, purpose and thoughtfulness the results can be absolutely beautiful.

Now, if I make a heartfelt promise to use my words in a more nurturing and loving manner towards myself― why would I then use those same words to tear another woman down. You see, my responsibility as the good human being I aim to be is not only to myself, but to other women as well. How do I uplift myself and then tear another woman's self-esteem down? How can I fight a problem I perpetuate?


{Five Fab} Ways to Beat the Holiday Blues

The Holiday season is officially here. Next week is Thanksgiving. Isn't that crazy? Wasn't it just Halloween? But I won't complain since this is my favorite time of the year. I love everything about Thanksgiving and Christmas-- the food, the family time and the decorating.

My fondness for the holidays stems from my memories of growing up in Brooklyn. Watching the colors of the leaves change for Thanksgiving and waking up to a snow-covered yard on Christmas morning was a magical time.

But as you grow up, life happens and some of that magic gets lost. About five years ago I decided to shift my energies and rekindle my holiday spirit. I began focusing on the people and things that added joy and meaning to my life. 

So today my pre-holiday gift to you is this post-- 5 Fab Ways To Beat The Holiday Blues.


{Beauty} Review: Baldwin Moisturizing Lotion Savvy Care for Men

Hey Fabs!

Another reason why I brought Sean on as a contributor to the blog was so that in addition to fashion, we could share a wide range of products geared towards men.

And to start off, here is a skincare review. We were contacted to try out Baldwin Moisturizing Lotion Savvy Care for Men. It is a product made just for men that contains dead sea minerals and natural oils, etc to address how their face can be affected by shaving and the elements.


{Beauty} Finding Joy In The Journey Featuring Origins Three Part Harmony #ad

Hey Fabs!
I wrote a little bit about this on my birthday post but I wanted to share more with you about how my life has changed in such wonderful ways as I have gotten older. I truly believe that the biggest reason for this change is that I have been consumed with gratitude & just living each moment as they come. 

And as a result, this year I have accomplished things that I never even really thought were possible. For one, I have started running. This was huge for me because I have health issues that affect my legs.  And while I walked many a race and even walked a marathon back in my 20's, the last thing that you could have told me at the beginning of this year that I would be doing is running.

But I am

{Body Positive} The Importance of Loving Your Body First

We've all been there, "I'll buy those new jeans after I lose 10/20/40 lbs" or "I'll buy that new bathing suit after I tone up." Putting our lives on hold or depriving ourselves from an experience until we feel we have earned it by looking a certain way. 

But what happens when it takes longer than you thought?  Or for some reason you don't reach your exact goal? What happens to all that time you spent depriving yourself of living your life to the fullest?


{Five Fab} Ways to Get Your Body Positive Groove Back

Remember how Stella flew to Jamaica to get her groove back after being burned out at home and her personal life. Well, this little list here will do the same for you, minus the Taye Diggs (sorry ladies). 

Once in a while some event, nasty words or unwanted "advise" about our weight or bodies kicks us off our body positive groove. Sometimes it's even our own thoughts or past habits that resurface-- trust me it happens to all of us. 

The thing is we have to figure out the best way to overcome those obstacles and not allow them to send us down a spiral of negativity.

So today I'm sharing with you 5 of the most effective ways I've learned to kick negativity out the door and get my body positive groove back.

1. Surround yourself with positive words

There is nothing I enjoy more than reading affirmative or inspirational quotes. You can find so much strength in words and that's what makes them so powerful. Which is also why people always say to be careful how you use them, how you choose to wield your power. Do you use them to tear others down or to uplift them? But that, my lovelies, will be a whole other discussion. Right now we're focusing on inspiring yourself out of a rut.

So here are a few inspiring quotes & images from the amazing Anastasia Amour. You can save them to your computer, use them as your phone's wallpaper or my favorite option print them and hang them or place them on your desk-- anywhere they'll be visible for daily inspiration.


{Events} TheFitExpo™ Comes to Chicago For the 1st Time - Details & Discounted Admission

Hey Fabs!

One of the things that I am always excited about as I progress on my health and fitness journey is just how many incredible ways that there are to get your fitness on. So needless to say I am stoked that TheFitExpo™  is coming to Chicago!

TheFitExpo Chicago

In addition to over 200 exhibitors, activities for the entire family are on tap. Per Erin Ferries, Executive Director, "TheFitExpo™ is for everyBODY, whether you are a hardcore fitness enthusiast or someone taking their first steps towards getting healthier. We promise an exciting and fun weekend for the entire family."

I am looking forward to rocking my ONEder Suit and joining in on a few of the 30 minute express classes that will be offered daily from 10:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. including Zumba, Booty Bootcamp & more.

And I was a Tae Bo freak back in the day, so I plan to be front and center to see Billy Blanks, who is just one of the famous fitness stars that will be on tap. I am also looking forward to seeing The Chicago Boyz Acrobatic Team, they rocked America’s Got Talent!

TheFitExpo™ will take place Saturday and Sunday, May 2 and 3 at Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, 5555 N. River Road, Rosemont, Hall G and you can save $10 off the daily admission by printing off this coupon and bringing it with you!

Learn more about TheFitExpo™ here and follow along on twitter for updates, features & more.

What say you? Do you go to events like this? 

Disclosure: I was provided with press access to cover this event and share it with you but I would have gone to it without it. Learn more about my disclosure policy here.


{Luxaholic} Who Doesn't Love A Good Massage?! #Giveaway

Hey Lovelies!

Some people might think it's fabulous to spend most of your work days sitting on your tush but those of us who do it day in and day out know sitting aint always easy.

Sitting & using a computer for hours on end can bring about a host of issues from back aches to bum aches, etc. So when I was at a housewares show here in Chicago and came across and sat on one of these PainFreePillow™, I knew she was coming home with me.

At the core of the PainFreePillow™ is a patented four patterns of vibration system that is activated by pressure, that was created to improve posture and circulation.

And in three words, I LOVE IT

I mean who doesn't love a good massage? And the varied vibration is really nice, especially the deep one, it really feels like hands are on you working out the kinks.


{Lifestyle} For The Love Of Smoothies #CurvesGoneVegan

I love smoothies and was seriously feeling pretty bummed that they were not a regular part of my everyday life. And being vegan now, I am really working to eat more real whole, plant based foods, so smoothies are a perfect option for doing so.

And the reason why I hadn't been making smoothies wasn't because we didn't have ingredients to make them at home because we always have fruits and greens and various nut milks in the fridge. The reason was that I just hate having to pull out the blender and even more so I HATE having to take it apart and clean it after I have used it.

Yeah, I know...first world problems.

So I to rectify this situation I purchased the Robert Irvine Personal Blender from HSN and it has changed my smoothie life!

For one, it is so small that I don't mind leaving it sitting on the counter, which is a huge thing of mine, as I hate a cluttered counter top. It is also so crazy easy to use and clean up. And it comes with 3 bottles, so if I want, I can prep my smoothies in the fridge beforehand or make additional ones for Joe or myself. And you basically make your smoothie in it and can pop a lid on it and go. So EASY!

{Video} Review: Warby Parker Home Try-On Glasses Program

So, I received my selections from the Warby Parker Home Try-On Glasses Program and I thought unboxing them they would be the perfect way to drop my first vlog of the year.

I was really hoping to find a pair (or two) that are stylish so that I can upgrade my prescription glasses game, especially my sunnies.


{What I Wore} Power Red For Women! #WearRedDay

Happy #WearRedDay Lovelies!

Lauren Ralph Lauren Dress (another fab option HERE

I am rocking the red and supporting the cause in the Lauren Ralph Lauren Ruffled Boatneck Jersey Dress I wrote about here which has since completely sold out. It is everything I hoped it would be and more and it was such a friggin steal.

Anyway, today I hope that you are spreading the word about heart disease and especially it's impact on women. I also hope that you, like I are planning to take the necessary steps to visit a doctor so that you are empowered with the knowledge to take & maintain control of your heart health!

{Health & Wellness} Rock The Red For Women! #WearRedDay

I have a pretty depressing family history of heart disease, having lost my beloved Gram, my ma mere and her multiple heart procedures and close calls with death and my own issues related to it.

So, needless to say the American Heart Association is a valued resource to me and I love supporting their annual Go Red For Women campaign.

Heart disease is not a man's disease. It kills 1 in 3 women and is 80% preventable!

So, the first Friday of Heart Month, February is Go Red For Women day and the goal is to have folks rock the power color and learn and share information regarding heart disease and how it effects women.

This year in addition to rocking the red, I am raising money for the American Heart Association and would appreciate any donations, no matter the amount.

What say you? 
How much do you know about heart disease and women? 


{Lifestyle} Warby Parker Home Try-On Glasses Program

In January of 2014 I wrote about trying Warby Parker's Home Try-on program (here) and while I did receive the 5 pairs that I had chosen, they came at the most worst possible time, right before I was leaving town for my grandfather's funeral.

And since you get 5 days to check them out, I had to send them back like the day after I returned from Louisiana, so while I did attempt to snap some quick pics of myself in the glasses, I looked so unhappy because I was so friggin sad that I did not post them. You can see them here on my flickr page.

But sadness aside, none of them really worked for me. And although I have of course since then gotten new glasses, I am looking for a pair or two that really rock so I have decided to give the service another try.

Here are the 5 styles that I requested.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

I am especially interested in checking out the sunglasses because I pretty much live in mine, so it would be nice to have a pair or two with my prescription in them so I can have clearer vision while rocking them.

To be continued...

Have you tried Warby Parker? 

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