Thursday, April 28, 2016

Fun Date Ideas

Dating seem to be an endless cycle of dinner at a restaurant or drinks at a bar.  Who hasn’t done these dozens of time? So much so that you know exactly what you will order without looking at the menu. Enough already!!

Here are a few fun ideas for a first date or even a date night. 

Have a picnic in a public park- Who doesn’t like a picnic? A picnic is a fun way to get to know someone or reconnect because it is so relax and laid back.  You could even do a BYO where someone is responsible for the drinks and the other for the sandwich (or whatever your preferences are).  A picnic is not limited to the warmer months so drag out your hot chocolate and cozy up together. 

Meet-up at a self-service frozen yogurt or ice cream shop- This is ideal for when you have limited time and want to have a quick and fun meet-up. Who doesn't like ice cream and moreover this is a fun way to know a little more about a person’s personality and taste. 

Go to street fair or festival- So you have being texting and talking on the phone and you have great chemistry with him/her a street fair is the ideal place to tap into that chemistry.  Street fairs are fun with food, drinks and entertainment, they are ideal if you want to spend a day with that person.

Head to a theme park- Theme parks aren’t for everyone; however they are great for the adrenaline enthusiast.   Like a street fair the amusement park offers a wide variety of entertainment and food options to make it a fun date.

Have a coffee date- I’m a coffee enthusiast so the offer for coffee works for me.  A coffee date is ideal for a quick hello, or a stroll. 

Pretend to be tourist (most fun I had) – No matter where you live pretending to be a tourist for the day can be a really fun date.  You can see the sights, stop at a tourist spot to have lunch and take silly pictures is a great way to spend a few enjoyable hours. 

Hit the gym together- Having a gym date is not ideal, but if both of you are fitness buffs it won’t matter that you are all sweaty because you will be showing off how much you can deadlift.  This is a really good way to connect with a person who shares your passion; moreover, who doesn’t want their cake and eat it too?

Go bowling (fun, fun) - a bowling alley has it all, rented shoes, beer, and snacks; what more do you need? Bowling is a good ice breaker not matter what your skill levels are, and it is even fun (gutter balls anyone?).  This will give you an insight to how competitive or how silly a person can become.
Karaoke Bar- Karaoke isn’t for the faint of heart but who hasn’t imagine they were Whitney or Bruce at some point.  Even if you are tone deaf or a former church choir member karaoke is awesome. 

Go to a museum- I think a stroll through the museum is romantic and it give you a chance visit or explore new and old exhibits.  A visit to the museum is ideal for the hot summer months or the colder winter months because the temperature is always right.  Go ahead hold hands and marvel at the dinosaur.

Choose your adventure, it can be hard to figure out exactly what your date taste may be but it doesn’t hurt to try.  Don’t settle for the same old same go out and have a great time.  

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wash Day- Transitioning Confessionals

Washing my ten months and counting transitioning hair is not an easy feat, however it is necessary.   This wash day I wanted to try a little something different so I added honey to my deep conditioner.  The reason I opt for honey was a tip I got from Nerline at Chic from Hair to Toe, and I must say sister girl knows what she is talking about.  The benefits of honey are awesome, it nourishes and enriches the hair leaving shiny and lustrous. I was really happy with the results; my hair was soft and felt moisturized. 

Hot Oil Prepoo- with coconut, Olive, grapeseed and avocado oil.  I first detangled use the oil mix cold after my hair was properly detangled, I warmed the oil mix and applied it from root to tip and did a scalp massage before putting on a plastic cap and a head tie.  I let the oil mix sit on my hair for 45 minutes.

Shampoo- I lathered twice with crème of nature sunflower and coconut detangling conditioning shampoo.  I don’t normally lathered more than once, however, my scalp was in the need of a proper cleansing.

Deep Condition- My intention was to a protein type deep conditioner put I opt to Deep Condition with Crème of Nature Intensive Conditioning Treatment and honey under my conditioning cap for 30 minutes.  After allowing my hair to cool I rinsed out the conditioner with warm water followed up my cool water to close the cuticles.  I then wrapped my head in a t-shirt and let it dry for 10 minutes.

Hair with conditioner

Leave-in conditioner and Moisturizer- I then sprayed my hair with Crème of Nature strength and shine leave-in followed my kinky curly knot today detangler and detangled.  While detangling I had quite a few knots at the ends so I trimmed a little as I went.  When I was finished with each section I plaited it, in all I had four plaits.  At this point I was tired so I put on my scarf and went to bed.  
Styling- In the morning I applied OGX coconut milk anti-breakage serum and blow dried each section on cool then applied Elasta QP olive oil and mango butter moisturizer.  I opted for my go to style of two flat twist (I’ve gotten good at it) for my hairstyle of the day. 

My many faces

Each new phase of this journey has its own challenges for me this phase is the “what in the world do I do with this?” Keeping my hair clean and moisturized is no biggie for me however styling is and may always be one. 

What are or were your transitioning challenges?

The #WashDayExperience Badge

Monday, April 25, 2016

Motivation- TRUST

Trust: A reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety of a person or thing. 

Your greatest achievements can happen when you trust yourself, trust others and trust the process.  Self-trust means taking care of your needs, in order to survive a situation, it means refusing to give up on yourself and having the confidence and courage to do so.  Three ways that you can build trust in yourself is 1) keep promises to yourself, 2) speak and treat yourself kindly, and 3) avoid people who seek to undermine your self-trust.

Trusting people is hard because everyone has the potential to betray you.  Betrayal happens in many forms and that can lead to mistrust in people.  However, trusting in ourselves will help us to cope with the betrayal without leaving a permanent mark on our ability to trust others. When dealing with others listening to your feelings and building healthy boundaries are catalyst to building a life with integrity. 

The lack of self-trust holds us back from taking risk because we do not have confidence in our ability. Taking risk is necessary for us to grow, because in every failure a lesson is learned.  In that lesson we learn something about ourselves, which can lead to having a higher level of trust in our instinct. Taking risk takes courage, which allows us to see what we are really capable of, and in turn builds our capacity for better self-trust. 

Stop running from your negative emotions and face them.  When you stare them in their face, you will feel the pain, the fear, the shame and uncertainty.  When you stop running away, you will be able to trust that you will be there for you.  You will have a feeling of inner peace, because you understand that the negative emotions aren’t destructive but are tools to finding your strength, courage, integrity and self-trust.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

How I Maintain My Hair Between Wash Days

Maintaining moisturized and super sleek and cute hair between wash days is always a challenge, especially when you exercise as much as I do. I exercise five days per week so maintaining my hair between wash days is super important. I sweat a lot I my head so after an intense work out I have wet hair, therefore I cannot put on a scarf and go to bed. The easy remedy would be to co-wash my hair but I am not at the level where I could wash my hair on a daily basis and still maintain healthy hair.  Therefore, the alternative is to moisturize, moisturize, moisturize.

The two things that are important in maintaining my moisture level and to have really fly hair in the morning is to moisturize my hair before it dries and also to apply some type of styling aid. To do this I moisturize my hair on a daily basis, and try to maintain my current style or implement a new style. 

Moisturize- Maintaining moisturized hair is very important to me so before my hair dries I usually spritz it with a refresher spray or a leave in conditioner spray and then follow up with my moisturizer. On alternating days I apply JBCO to my scalp to keep it clean and prevent any dryness.  My favorite products to use are Ettenio Refresher spray, Elasta QP Olive oil and Mango moisturizer and Crème of Nature Strength and shine leave in conditioner. 

Ways to maintain my curls- After spritzing and applying my moisturizer I often put my hair in perm rods are flexi rods.  Before I put in the rods I always apply a little curl enhancing product to give my curls life and longevity.  My favorite products to use are Cantu coconut curling crème or Shea Moisture scuffle.

Implementing another style- When all has failed and my hair is laden with products sweat and grime, I either do a co-wash for some type of updo. The co-wash is not typical for me for two reason (or one if you want to be technical) 1) I’m lazy and 2) I don’t have the time; therefore by Friday I have some type of updo. My favorite so far is my milkmaid-esque flat twist do, reason being it is simply and I have also gotten lovely compliments while wearing it.  

Finding techniques to keep your crown glory in tip top shape is very important and these techniques works really well for me.  I am currently ten months post relaxer and I can say without a doubt that I need a solid regimen.

How do you maintain your hair between wash days? 

The #WashDayExperience Badge

Friday, April 15, 2016

Weight Loss - In Review March

March was month of great personal accomplishment when it can to my exercise and nutrition regimen.  This month I dug deep and put all my heart, energy and soul into the Daily Burn Black Fire work outs.  These work out are a killer which have you sweating, and breathing like you are having an asthma attack; however, when it is all said and done you feel on top of the world.  Even though it is labeled as an eight week program I will be doing another round of it to take me to the beginning of summer.

I began keeping a food journal midway into the month of which I am super proud.  However, keeping a journal of any sorts requires dedication and consistence and a food journal isn’t any exception. My plan was to make an entry after each meal, however I found it easier to make small notes and make a complete entry at the end of each day. 

Here is a recap of my exercise, diet and weight loss for the month of March.

Meal prep-  I have remained consistent with my meal planning and meal prepping which is a big deal for me.
Food journal-  keeping a food journal showed me that I wasn’t consuming enough calories for the day.

Snacks- I did not skip my mid-morning and afternoon snacks as often as I was, and have focus on snacking on more fruits and nuts vs snack bars.

I exercised five days per week, which includes four days at home and one day at the gym.  My weekly regimen was;
Monday-  A Black Fire workout and cardio
Tuesday- Black Fire
Wednesday- Black Fire and Cardio
Thursday- Black Fire
Friday- Jump Tones (cardio) and Pilates
On most days I did not meet my daily step goals I have set in my fitbit, even though I am working out much more. 

Weight Loss-
This month was an improvement over loss month, this month I lost 1.2 pounds.  I was hoping to lose a little more than that but I’m not complaining.  Moreover, I have dropped and inch from my waist and almost half an inch from my arms which is fantastic in my book.  I had to cancel my doctor’s appointment for March but I hope the next time she sees me she’ll be happy. 
My exercise and diet plan is to aid my weight loss; however I am doing it to not only feel good but to also look good.  It is great to catch your reflection in a mirror and think “she’s cute” before realizing it’s you.  I had one of those moments recently and I was in a good mood for days.  Getting healthy and staying healthy should be a constant.  You should have your healthy at the fore front of your mind every moment to ensure you maintain the best you.  If it is so then the dreaded pounds won’t pack back on or you won’t lose fitness level because you stopped. 

What are you doing to maintain the best you?

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Dating after a divorce

Dating after a divorce can be very challenging to even the most confident person.  However, being divorce isn’t a sentence to a lifetime of being single.  Even though dating after divorce can be a nightmare is doesn’t have to be; it can be a rewarding experience and also life changing.  Here are few tip for the divorcees that are

Be ready – I know how difficult it can be to all of a sudden find yourself alone and your gut reaction maybe to find a new mate.  However, it is beast to wait until you are ready before entering the dating scene.  If you are truly serious about finding love again make sure you heal; find out what went wrong in your marriage; what role you played in the demise.  Once you have those questions answered you are ready for and will be able to recognize a healthy relationship.

Be honest- Every day you hear the statistic that fifty percent of marriages ends in divorce, therefore it is no longer a deal-breaker. Be honest about your status and you will find that your date will be more empathic than you expected.  While hearing you dirty laundry on the first date is not good; but be honest with you date because almost everyone has experienced some kind of heartache.

Be patient- Dating isn’t a race, so be patient with yourself and your date.  Being back on the dating sphere after a divorce is quite challenging; you will find yourself being fearful, even doing and saying the wrong thing.  Be patient because not every date will lead to a long-term relationship.

Stay positive- be open- Staying positive will leave you open to new possibilities.  Your new partner may be very different from your old, because you have change or what you need in a partner may have change. Therefore, before each date remind yourself of your great qualities, and stay positive in order to embrace the adventure. 

Love yourself- be true to yourself- The period after a divorce is a very vulnerable period. So, take some time to access the changes in your life making sure you get reacquaint with you.  Focusing on yourself will help you bring your best self to a date and eventually a relationship.  Loving who you are and being true to yourself will attract the right person to you.

Have a must have and a must not have list- Take time to create a list of your “must haves” and “must not haves”.  You may find that both list compliments each other and is done simultaneously.  Your must have list may have aspects of Ex, but be careful you aren’t trying to find a new him.  When creating this list use your rational and try to avoid subconscious triggers.   Your “must not have” list can be vague, concrete or even ambiguous.  These list are important but should be set in stone, because they are just starting points.

Remember this is a time for new discovery and adventures.  Learn from your previous mistakes as you begin your dating after divorce journey. 

Happy Dating

My Blog turns 2!! Big Shout Out..

OMG, Relaxed and Healthy turns two! I cannot believe how quickly another year came and went.

When I decided to start this blog it was to document my new healthy lifestyle in regards to healthy hair and a healthier body.  However, as time goes on I have not only share those aspects of my life but I have also shared what and how I stay motivated.  Lately I have shared my attempt into the dating world.

This a deeply personal blog which is intended to motivate, inspire and share knowledge.  Recently an acquaintance liken my blog to a diary ( evil eye was given), but I have to differ and educate her on the fact that is a collective in which we motivate, educate and inspire.  

 I enjoy sharing bits and pieces about my life, but for me the best part of this blog is connecting with my readers and other bloggers.  The words of encouragement and high -fives have help to craft not only this blog but also my life and lifestyle.

I would love to give a but shout out to the #washdayexperience, without you guys I may not have gotten this far on my healthy hair journey and for that I am truly grateful.

A big heartfelt THANK YOU

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Wash Day- Why Do I need to wash my hair?

((confession, I hate washing my hair)))

I am in love with my transitioning hair, because it is behaving better than I expected it to.  Overall my hair is healthy, the natural portion is so much thicker and wavier than I could only imagine; that may be the reason I was relaxed at ten. The texlaxed portion while texture is still relatively straight in comparison.So at nearly ten months post the difference between two textures is quite noticeable, which make for a stressful wash day.  To make matters worse once the hair gets wet I have shrunken natural hair with stringy pieces hanging off. YEP!

Anyway after mustering up the courage, here is how my wash day went;

Prepoo-  I put my hair into four sections and finger detangled with olive oil. After the hair was properly detangled I applied Cantu conditioning repair cream from root to tip before covering with a plastic cap and a head scarf for 15 minutes.

Shampoo- I then remove the scarf and plastic cap and allowed my hair to cool, before rinsing out the prepoo mixture, Then I shampooed each section  with diluted Creme of Nature coconut and sunflower detangling conditioning shampoo.  I focused on my scalp to ensure I remove any product build-up I may on on it.

Deep Conditioner-  After ensuring that the shampoo was properly rinsed out my hair I wrapped my hair into a t-shirt to get rid of the excess water.  I then applied Shea Moisture 10 n 1 masque to each section then my oil mix before cover with a plastic cap and my conditioning cap.  I conditioned for roughly 45 minutes because I was contemplating do a overnight deep conditioner, but changed my mind.

 Once my hair was cool I rinsed with warm water and followed up with cool water.  I then wrapped my head with a t-shirt to dry.  Unfortunately I fell asleep with my head still wrapped in the t-shirt.  Maybe i should have DC overnight; the one blessing is that the t-shirt stayed in place.

Leave-in and moisturizer- The next morning I sprayed my very dry and shrunken hair with Creme and Nature Strength and shine, then applied Kinky Curly Knot today detangler and followed up with OGX coconut milk anti-breakage serum. Then slowly and gently detangled before blow drying on cool to stretch the roots.  Once the hair was stretch I applied Shea Moisture moisturizer and flexi rod set with eighteen flexi rods.

I must say even though was completely dry without any products it felt so moisturized.  The end results was soft, moisturized, fluffy and bouncy hair. I guess this is where technique and knowledge comes to play.

How was your #washdayexperience? 

The #WashDayExperience Badge

I’m Thankful for Spring

I give thanks for this vibrant season especially after the long cold dreary weather too many of us had to endure. I’m grateful for spr...