Friday, June 10, 2011

72 Hours of Solitude at The Half Moon Resort

In my world, travel is not always as glamorous as it seems. But there are those spare moments in which I do get-a-way and it’s life-changing. Generally, this happens when I can just go some place and relax on a beach. I suppose it’s a Pisces thing.

Recently, I was in Jamaica for a variety of reasons… none of which turned out the way they were planned. But I soon learned that was the way it was intended… the universe had other ideas. I needed to spend some time reflecting on thoughts that were occupying my mind. So I headed to the exclusive Half Moon Resort in Montego Bay to connect with my mind, body and soul.

In just 72 hours, I had time to think about a subject that brought fear, anxiety and excitement to my life. I had no internet and occasional signals on my blackberry that kept me connected to life outside of my cottage. For a minute, I thought that I was being punked! But somehow I stayed semi-connected with a friend who helped me sort out my feelings and devise a plan to move forward in an area of my life I usually avoid. But again, isolation doesn’t allow you to escape what’s on your mind… and neither does the exclusivity of paradise.

 


My cottage was amazing… every morning I opened the French doors and took in fresh air with an ocean breeze that offered a level of peace that escapes those of us who live in metropolitan cities. The simplicity of it all was priceless and so was the privacy.

Tranquility and solitude became my confidants allowing me the peace of mind to conceptualize a number of stories for my blog. But Ironically, I can’t write a lot when I’m not in the confines of my home. I have to be completely settled. But the creativity that’s sparked when I’m away allows the words and thoughts to pour out when I am in front of my computer. I suppose that’s the method to my madness as a writer, but it works.

So what did my three days at the Half Moon Resort offer… the luxury of time, peace, and a view of the world that captured my thoughts in a way that few places have the ability to do. I had time to purge any thought that made me feel as if I was not in control of my own choices. I changed my thinking… as a result things that seemed out of the realm of possibility became Godwinks. The beauty of a Godwink allows you to receive a sign of affirmation that you’re on the right path and eradicate uncertainty and worry.

Sometimes all that you have to do is search your soul for the answers to life’s most perplexing and provocative questions. Every single time that I do that… I always get the answer that brings everything else into perfect alignment and clarity. The lesson—when facing a challenge, settle your spirit so that you can see through it and rise above it.

 


While sitting on the beach looking at the Caribbean Sea… I surrendered all the things that brought me uncertainly and traded them for the knowledge that I’m shifting and growing. The vision for my life has never been clearer. The value and worth that I place on myself determines the people and experiences that I attract into my life… and nothing is more powerful or beautiful.

Once I stepped outside the cottage door for the last time… I was confident that I was embracing a heart and mind at ease inspiring me to take a risk and see what happens.

Where do you escape to center your mind, body and soul?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Beautiful Skin is HAUTE!

The next time that you head to Las Vegas you may want to pamper your skin. I checked into the spa at the Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas for 80 minutes of pure bliss. I was invited to indulge in the amazing Lightening and Brightening Facial designed to rejuvenate the skin and give it a glow! My therapist began the treatment with a gentle peel, enriched with copper, followed by a facial massage and mask. Nearly two hours later, my skin felt hydrated and refreshed. This treatment, available only at the Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas, utilizes a new, all-natural Hungarian product line called Omorovicza. The product incorporates nutrient-rich minerals found in Hungary’s legendary thermal waters. You can actually witness the healing powers when you look at your skin following the facial. I loved the results and can't wait to go back. Beautiful skin is HAUTE!

 
To learn more about spa treatments offered at the Four Seasons Las Vegas visit
http://www.fourseasons.com/lasvegas/spa/facial_treatments_for_her/

Do you get professional facials?

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Laughter is HAUTE!

This morning a friend’s call got me out of bed… catching up can be good for the soul. But one thing that resonated with me was her observation about my life. I’ve known her for more than 20 years and she’s always been extremely honest. So it’s no surprise when she told me that she observed something about me that I never thought about… my ability to make laughter a staple in my life. She said, “I saw you in a photo with someone and the two of you were laughing!” And based on that fact alone… she concluded that we must have a great friendship. Well, it happened to be somebody that I had just met the day before and even though that photo was taken months ago during one of my trips… she’s right. As I’ve said before, travel opens up a unique opportunity for me to meet all kinds of people. Because I enjoy meeting people, I tend to draw like-minded people into my zone and if we click or vibe… we stay in touch!

My friend also said that the next time she gets into a relationship; my photo reminded her that there has to be a degree of laughter that’s part of open, honest communication. So now, she’s got me to thinking about that… I’m always laughing at something so for me it wasn’t anything that I thought about. But after that conversation, I realized that laughing out loud with people is the best way to stay healthy, happy and sane. And when you’re in a relationship with someone special—it has to be a requirement. My relationship with men has always been one where I can be comfortable enough to laugh at myself. Silly? No, but fun and light-hearted conversation that’s good for the heart. Oh well, maybe a degree of silliness! Lol Who am I kidding? Life is serious enough so make it count by filling your circle with people who make you laugh and smile no matter what’s going on around you because you just never know who may be watching. Remember, active plus happy equals attractive!

Who makes you laugh out loud?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Embracing the Love of Friendship is HAUTE!

When it’s time to escape, it’s time to get away to some place haute, but sometimes no matter where I am… I can’t escape what’s on my mind. When something weights heavily, I find that I’m forced to deal with it. I’m not the type to compartmentalize like some people. But when real emotions start to come out… I’m grateful that my friends lift my spirits to make me stronger and wiser. As a result, I can approach whatever is unpleasant or that lesson in progress with clarity. Their strength offers a shoulder and the understanding that I have to resist the temptation of trying to control something that I have no control over so I learn to let go and trust the process.

I’m one of the lucky ones to have a friend who is half way around the world call me on a tropical island to say something that empowers me or laugh out loud at another friend who sends me text messages with jokes mixed with “real talk” to help me understand that my life is shifting in ways that I may not understand, but I’m better for it. One of my friends of many years always asks the same question… “What’s the lesson?”

 


It’s an amazing feeling to know that no matter where I am… I’m never really alone. I’ve always found that friendship and time are the two biggest investments that I can make in people. And you never know when you’ll need to cash in so I try hard to pick my friends carefully. When the storms come along… you’ll need someone to shield you from whatever makes you hurt… with a promise that everything will be alright again. Your real friends show up to support… show empathy, compassion and love. They guide you through the disappointments of life to carve out a place of acceptance, while pointing you in a new direction… helping you get back to the right path. But they also understand that what works for them may not work for me so they allow me to have my own process and victories… they always say examine your heart… and that’s when something remarkable happens. As the process unfolds, the confusion, disappointments and hurts unravel to reveal a life full of endless possibilities to remind me of my own specialness and blessings. “The past always serves the future and a foundation for all the days that follow.” So I’m trying harder to live and love in the moment… and when the storms come along learn to dance in the rain.

To my friends, you know who you are… you matter to me more than you know. Everyone deserves friends like you.

What kind of friend are you?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Being Beautiful is HAUTE!

There’s something about a man who tells me that I’m beautiful… he makes me smile. I’ve heard a lot of conversation lately about an article that expresses a particular take on whether black women are beautiful. I must be one of a few women who thought nothing of it. In fact, I had a conversation with a few girlfriends who had different opinions about it. I just really don’t get plugged into debates like that because it’s pointless. People can have the right to their own thoughts but at the end of the day that old saying rings true “beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”

Well, over the course of my life I’ve had men tell me that I was attractive to them. I’ll never forget when some of them (who are fathers with daughters) would pay me the highest compliment… they told me that they wanted their girls to grow up and be just like me. When a man tells you that—it’s mind blowing because men are extremely protective of their baby girls. I often asked them why and generally it had to do with a couple of things… the fact that I live life on my own terms and I value and validate black men who allow me into their world uncensored. They respect and value my friendship often as a result of unspoken shared experiences… it’s about loyalty, trust, and bringing peace into a world full of drama and rejection.



Recently, someone reminded me that I was “Beautiful” to him and made a point to say you’re enough just the way that you are so don’t try to change based on what you think someone else wants you to be. Well, when I saw his note it made me think about something else that I read recently… when a man says you’re sexy; he’s telling you that you’re physically desirable. But when he tells you that you’re pretty… it means that you’re attractive to him. However, when he gets past those two things and looks into your heart and soul—you’re beautiful to him. Being beautiful to a man means that your entire being makes you extraordinary in ways that really matter. You’re not only pretty and sexy but you glow! Your confidence, inner vixen, charm and intelligence is a compliment to even the sexiest man on the planet—you enhance him! Think about it... why opt to use the word beautiful instead of pretty or cute :)?  

When I mentioned these thoughts to my female friends they came back with… “Do you need a man to tell you that you’re beautiful to feel it?” In response, no, I don’t need a man to tell me that because my confidence level is pretty high plus my mother and friends co-sign often, but let’s face it if a man that matters to you or that you find attractive or desirable offers a level of validation that every human-being innately seeks (because we all want to be loved and accepted as we are)… then that’s powerful. Sometimes I don’t feel pretty or cute but when someone who sees me on one of my “what I think is my not so good day” says to me I think that you look amazing… it validates me and instantly changes my view of myself. We all need cheerleaders. I think that if more black men or men who love black women told us that we’re beautiful… articles that seek to reinforce the opposite would never have some women questioning their worth, value or beauty… it wouldn’t stir anger because we already know those who truly matter will step up through their words and actions… and silence those critics . The focus instead would be on stepping into our own light and allowing our inner and outer beauty to shine with the men who love us smiling at just the thought of us!

What makes a women beautiful?

Rocking Your Curves is HAUTE!

No matter where I travel in the world, I represent the women who are thicker than super models, but just as beautiful.

My butt is bigger than most unless you live in the ATL... where thicker girls with hour glass figures rule! And that’s alright with me. I would often hide my assets with clothes that conceal but one day a man who made my heart smile asked, “Why do you hide it under a dress?” So when this guy who is super haute, sexy and smart encouraged me to let my curves outI did! I figured if he was cosigning… I’m all over it!


Southern girls with killer curves, ample thighs, full lips and hips that sway know that the secret to being a confident woman starts with the mind. We also know that for those who walk behind us… we inspire curiosity and acceptance. But for those who can’t get past our apple bottoms (two words) don’t hate!

 


As I travel the globe, I’m rocking my curves… whether in New York City, London, Paris or the Caribbean. I hope to represent girls like me who once thought that containing our best asset was the best way to be taken seriously because you want men to look at you (above the neck) when you’re talking. But as I’ve learned it’s all about how you present the total package… be unapologetically the best you possible. So go ahead be a bombshell with brains! Rock your curves, celebrate what makes you different and watch the world take notice.

Disclaimer: This post was inspired by a Nike ad…

In this photo I'm wearing a Gottex Katalist Shoulder Swimsuit courtesy of InStyle Swimwear at the exclusive Half Moon Resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica. To order visit

Use this discount code HauteTravels15 to receive 15% off you entire order from Instyle Swimwear!

Half Moon Resort http://halfmoon.rockresorts.com/default.asp

What's your best asset?