Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Haute Times in the Caribbean

One of my favorite past times is sailing in the Caribbean. While in Montego Bay, Jamaica on Saturday, the Jamaican Tourist Board invited me and a few girls who met me in Jamaica on a Reggae cruise by Island Routes. When we got on the boat, the fun started immediately. There were a group of people from Trinidad who really showed us how they “drop down low and sweep the floor with it!” We had so much fun watching them dance since as American girls, we’re a little more modest about suggestive dancing with men that we don’t know. But the chemistry between all of us mixed well. And they wanted to exchange contact information so that we could stay in touch.

So after the cruise around Montego Bay, the girls from Trinidad want me to hang out with them for Carnival next year! I’m thinking, “What have I gotten myself into?” But, I’m up for visiting their island and getting to know a little more about their culture and island influence. Travel is a lifestyle and one has to adjust to the fashion and beauty of it no matter where it takes you… ;)

Have you ever gone to Trinidad during Carnivale?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Daisy By Marc Jacobs for My Haute Travels Bag!

While on my beach get-a-way, I brought these Daisy Petite Flower fragrances by Marc Jacobs to add a bit of an Indian summer garden to my weekend. The new spin on the “Iconic” Daisy design packaging is super cute and makes for a great conversation piece when you pull it out of your travel bag.

The duo fragrances in their retro chic charm offer two scents. Daisy is full of top notes like wild strawberry, violet leaves and ruby red grapefruit… with musk, vanilla and white woods as a base note. While, Daisy Eau So Fresh offers ruby red grapefruit, raspberry and green leaves as top notes with musks, plum and cedarwood as its base.

My favorite is Daisy! The set retails for $59 at select stores nationwide.



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

My Haute Thoughts on Following Your Heart

Just a couple of months ago, I decided to return to Jamaica but this time driven by purpose. I invited women who wanted to follow their passion and investigate their purpose to join me. I also decided to make giving back to the local community a priority and therefore participate in “Pack for a Purpose,” a program supported by the Half Moon Resort to help the Barrett Town Elementary School by encouraging their guests to pack school supplies, games and recreational items like soccer balls for the kids.
In an effort to make this work, I reached out to those who support me and my Haute Travels projects and got a few generous donations and words of encouragement. When I decided to do this, I wasn’t sure how it would come together. I just knew that I was divinely led to do it. And I didn’t focus on how it would work out. I just knew that it would; there was no need to worry. As I get closer to the date of departure, more people have reached out with generous donations, like Najah, Owner of Like the River Hair Salon in Atlanta or my friend Kimberly Patterson, a talented makeup artist in Chicago, who highlighted the beauty of Iyanala Vanzant, as seen in her new show Iyanla: Fix My Life.

My family has even stepped in to make contributions… my mom and my cousin have been inspired to support the kids! My friends, Robin, Greta, Vernon, Samantha, Rolanda and others like Christa, Angela Myers, April (an absolute travel addict) and Debbi Howard have been generous with their support of my Haute Travels endeavors. Their sponsorship has allowed me to help more kids on this trip because of their recent contributions to my love of mixing beauty, travel and philanthropy. Although, their angel investments were for a Paris project, I redirected some funds to help the kids. I love Paris but this was more important at this time.

But the love doesn’t stop there… the girls who are coming along with me are also buying school supplies to encourage the kids to discover their passions. And even the Half Moon and the Jamaican Tourist Board sponsored activities or covered costs to help offset our expenses so that we can give more. The spirit of giving is contagious!

Those who stepped up to help did so without reservation, but others who could help just remained silent, even though, in the past, they’ve benefitted from my help in a number of ways, including getting paid to work with a brand that I sent their way, receiving fully funded press trips or helped promote their projects using my own platform. I’m reminded of those things because it shows that when God puts a promise in your heart; nothing can stop it from manifesting. There is always something so much bigger at work. I’ve learned… what you give out, you always get back and this is an example of what giving and karma is all about. Sometimes people want to help but simply can’t financially, but nothing can stop them from using their own platform to spread the word or encourage someone else to do something good if they want to. If you take nothing else away from my story… know that when something is in your heart to do, just believe that it will all fall into place as the universe intended. You already have everything that you need to move forward... just believe and trust that it was put in your heart and spirit for a reason. You can do it.