Crunching Numbers

I came home from work today and I’ve been crunching numbers all evening. I realize I’ve been handling my finances all wrong.

Somehow I put my bills in front of my own personal needs.

I haven’t even been Tithing.

Over the past few days, I’ve been pushing my fine art work more. I even reached out to a few studios that offer private parties. I mean I have to make additional income just in case I don’t meet my mission fundraising goals. I’ve gotten rejection after rejection

Thus far I’ve gotten rejection after rejection. And then I made a promise in my heart.

If this art job works out I’ll start paying my tithes and give the entire first check from the painting to my church. Immediately after making the promise in my heart, I began to wonder what would happen if I disappointed God? If I failed at my promise? I figured I must be on the right path if this is where my thoughts are taking me.

I mentioned how I made some (bad choices) to help my mom financially and it’s put me in a tight space. I’ve decided it’s time to do better.

I wanted to know how to split up my finances and came across this calculator. I am trying this out this upcoming month because I’m tired of being at a disadvantage due to lack of proper implementation.

No one should have to pay for my financial mistakes and I really wish people in power cared enough to really empower communities faced at a disadvantage. What ever happened to giving back?

I intend to do better and share these things I am learning because being mad solves nothing. I have to do better.

Malachi 3:10 says:

Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD almighty, ” and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be enugh to store it.

Yet often we think of our bills first. Or the things we want versus the things we need. As I read through this article I decided to take notes and make a new list for my bill payments. I’m tired of not being able to make investments in myself and my immediate family due to financial issues.

Lastly, if you haven’t heard the latest interview on power 105.1 with the breakfast club, be sure to check it out.

Just Believe

You only need to believe and have a little bit of grace and mercy upon yourself. This post is for me, and any other person struggling to get over themselves and allowing fear to stop them from using their gifts.

You know how many times I’ve heard that? I’ve let doubt countlessly hold me back. But sometimes, when you have no other option you are forced to make things work.

Figure it out. 

The one and only advice my mom has given me over, and over, and over again – because she didn’t have the answers.

I’ve got a story to tell but I can’t share all the details. I learned that its best to teach from the scar, not the wound. Basically to let the open wound healing. But this current wound is pushing me to face my fears, push doubt aside, and do the work.

I’ve mentioned before that I am going to Haiti for the first time ever on a missions trip. I have to raise a certain amount to get there. My strategy is to use gofundme as the platform to collect the funds. In exchange for the funds, I am creating artwork as a form of thanks.

I want my art to take me places I’ve never dreamed of but I’ve been allowing fear to stop me.

When I try to answer the question, ” What are you afraid of?” I have a series of answers and additional thoughts that come to mind:

Failure – but what is considered failure? People not supporting me, not agreeing with my beliefs, fear of struggling financially – forever…..

These fears exist only in my head. Every time I’ve painted something for someone in the past they’ve loved it. I can be inspired by nature, people, places, animals – my imagination is the limit (and access to materials, my limbs – you get the point).

I thought of the bible verse, “Ye of little faith, why did you doubt?” I doubted because I didn’t believe it would work, despite the money I invested, despite the feedback I received, despite the requests for additional artwork, likes on social media, and on and on the list can go.

I’ve heard it countless times that you need to believe in your product before you can sell it to anyone else. It clicked for me yesterday as I saw typefaces, merchandise, the overall branding in WW Raw – and the responses of people in the crowd. Buying a cup of soda for $9 in a holographic cup – Nah I’ll take a regular size cup because that brand, it’s just not for me – And that is more than ok.

The other thing is to be genuine. Today I did my live video on Facebook and I was s0o scared. I did the video in spite of the fear because the cushion of money I had set aside as a backup is no longer available. This strategy has to work, and I’m willing to put in the work.

The only thing of caution is ensuring I have enough time per drawing that gives above $100. I need to figure that out.

Once I finish this strategy I’ll be making a course and you can sign up to know more about it in the form below.

I’ll be going live again this week on my facebook page, and I’ll be better prepared this time around.

Interested in supporting? Visit my gofundme page here.

Dear Creative – Let Your Light Shine!

Today I spent time in a photoshoot with my cousin and sister and we are working to promote my moms work as a seamstress.

My mom has been sewing for more than twenty years. It’s been her dream to have her own business as a seamstress — so we are doing some experimenting with social media and collaborating with creatives.

As a creative we are often timid to share our work. Recently I watched my friends video about confidence you can check out that video here. Her words make sense.

Curious to see what we were working on?“>Check a sneak preview here of todays festivities

You Don't Need Permission

You don’t need permission to be great.

Surely this is a note to myself. I’ve enrolled in Convert Kits Product Master Class with hundreds of other people – and it made me realize you don’t need permission to go after what you want.

You need dedication, consistency, and discipline – all that mixed with hard work, trial and error with a bit of realistic expectations are bound to flourish.

Somewhere along the lines we’ve shy’d away from trial and error. Be it from the advice, opinions and suggestions of those around us or the lack of confidence. I’ll talk more about building confidence in a future post but I’ve found that too often we are seeking permission from people to do things we already enjoy.

Life’s challenges require us to be creative and think out the box. If there’s advice I wish someone told me sooner – and I mean drilled it into my head – it would be that you don’t need permission. Be great at what you do and share, share, share!!!!

There’s more to this note to self that I’ll be sharing tomorrow. In the mean time check out the product master class!!!

Something Is Happening Here

It’s getting easier to share my writings and as comments pour in there is a new found motivation happening. So far the topics that seem to resonate the most are fitness/wellness and health, beauty, faith and spirituality, and a few of the life lessons learned.

While this is an assumption, it informs me that the writing needs to be relatable and not always offer a solution-  but perhaps invite someone to share their experience, thoughts and opinions. A common ground really.

But something else is happening as well, showing up to my blog allowed me to talk freely (where I felt comfortable in sharing publicly) about myself, my struggles, fears and dislikes – but as new people come along for the journey I know I don’t wish to sound like I am rambling. It’s forcing me to choose my topics a bit more intentionally.

But my writing were (selfishly) for me. A place to clear my head, improve my writing style, “find my voice” as people like to say and just explore. But more people are peeping in. Curiosity is striking and I see you! 🙂

One thing I believe is that we have one life and everything is interconnected. From the choices we make, to the people we meet, the seasons of life and everything in between its there with and for purpose.

I want these writing to help me articulate better and help me in finding clarity – especially when it comes to designing for people. This thing thats happening has only come through experimenting, showing up consistently, and being authentic.

Perhaps a crowd is forming- and I’m not gonna lie – it’s interesting to take note, to point it out even. Perhaps an audience is forming.


365 Days of Writing: An Update

365 days of writing:an update 

First I want to thank you for subscribing. I always find it interesting that people subscribe to blogs of those they don’t know. Typically something has resonated with you for you to subscribe – so thank you. You are among several that hit the subscribe button over the past month or so- and if you haven’t checked the about page I figure it would be wise to give an update as a post (and if I’m honest with myself I wasn’t sure what else to write about). 

Back in September of 2016, an online design community I am a part of decided to go through a course that’s made free if you are a member. It’s called 30 days to better writing. This blog however has been around for some time. I started it when I transferred schools in college. I wanted to document my journey to becoming a professional designer. Back then for me professional =paid and my views have since changed and it would have been great to have the documentation of it but why remince on the past?. I hadn’t seen many people do that – document where they want to be or how they got there. Instead it was often a story told in hindsight. Through writing and blogging, I’ve since learned that it ought to help someone (even if it’s just for the author). 

Currently, I’m on a mission to write everyday. There are times where I’ve found myself to write multiple times a day – some are kept in a personal hand written journal or through an app called day one. 

Writing has been a form of expression for me growing up. Yes, I was one of those kids that kept a diary or a journal as some people called it… until my mom came across it. She yelled at me for some stuff I was planning to do – oh the joys of childhood and the little I really knew about life. When that happened I destroyed all my personal journals. 

Now as I write, it helps me clear my head – it’s become a form of therapy, and a way to articulate myself. 

So Welcome!, and Thanks for joining the journey – my writing hasn’t been specifically only about my design aspirations of hoping to work for IDEO, but more of the day to day experiences in between. Thus far I’ve written about my faith, disappointments, fears, concerns, lessons learned and experiences I’ve had from the culture I’ve been raised within (I’m Haitian American by the way).

As I hit publish today, it marks my 228th day of consecutive writing. I can’t wait to hit day 265 because I can then do a 100 day countdown. What I’d really like to start implementing are interviews, diy, and even more lessons learned, more about my faith and how it leads me in my decision making, and other side projects I’d like to explore along with book reviews – the list can go on and on. 

As more people subscribe to my blog I find it interesting and and feel that there needs to be a more coherent purpose to my writings. I believe that clarity comes through searching and implementation and showing up to write everyday has been a part of that process. 

If there’s a specific post that resonated with you, let me know. If there’s a topic that you’d like me to write more on let me know! I like when the blog is interactive. It lets me know I’m not alone in this massive world and that the issues I face are not that of my own. 

If you subscribed via email and are a bit shy of leaving a comment you can always hit reply and I’ll see your message.

See ya tomorrow on the blog!

My Love/Hate of MakeUp

Opinions are like belly buttons. Everyone has them but they don’t really matter. 

Now that I’ve cleared that up, let’s dig into my love/hate relationship with make up. 

I love that you can literally transform yourself. Last week I did my makeup everyday and it had a direct affect on my mood and my attitude. No one in the office could tell me off – yes it gave me a boot in confidence. But many people take it that if you need make up to leave the house then you don’t love yourself or that you lack confidence – or that you are being “fake”.  

I see it as part of a costume to play the part, besides when you look good you feel good and when you feel good you do better. 

I remember posting a question on my Facebook wall to get the opinions of others and it stirred up some good conversation. Every person has their reasons for putting it on (or not) but at the end of the day everyone wants to feel beautiful. 

I learned some people wear it just for fun, some people for confidence, others to hide blemishes. Sure we all have our own insecurities and some people just feel more secure with make up. ::shrugs:: (Just stay away from the pool in the summer!) 

Now for my real rant: the things I don’t like about make up: 

– the removal process. I feel like my face is never clean enough. (This is an invitation- if you’ve got good recommendations for makeup remover for sensitive skin, be sure to comment below).

– the dryness it causes to my skin. I like my skin soft! 

– acne! Need I say more? Some products require testing. 

– everyone is at a different skill level and if your face isn’t “beat to the Gods” people feel they have an invitation to critique. If I have the balls to walk out the house with a bold color on my lips/eyes – I could care less if you don’t like it. So long as I don’t look like a clown (less it be the actual costume) I shall be on my merry way. 

– I used to have combination skin and well now it’s more oily. Using those matte products can’t be good long term. 

Things I Love about make up: 

– compliments left and right, 

– fun to play in especially when dressing up for events. 

– adds a splash of color and fun to personality. 

– can be unique. 

So to my ladies out there- what are your thoughts on make up?

Comment below 👇👇👇

Motivation To Get Moving

In 2015 I successfully dropped 27lbs. In my workplace we made our own competition. We would all weigh in on the same day, if you maintained you were fine, if you gained anything you paid $5.00 for the week, and at the end of the competition biggest loser (most pounds lost) takes home the money pot.

I came in third place, but I had additional motivation to get moving and dropping the pounds. My brother was getting married and I wanted to look good. I had a few support systems in place too. Made a group chat with my friends and every week we would check in.

Fast forward to 2017 and I’ve gained the 27lbs back and then some. Currently I weigh 199.4 pounds. For me its not just the numbers that matter. I know I want to be a source of motivation for those around me, and well yesterday I had a conversation with my mom and it pushed me to get moving again today.

She was telling me how she believed I eat healthy and that I just needed to go back to the gym. For the most part I sometimes eat healthy, but we order out so much and sometimes I order anything but a salad. So after the conversation with my mom I felt guilty. I felt like I was lying to her.

I decided I need to be consistent, dedicated and rearrange my schedule to fit my activities. Between 2015 and today I know I’ve experienced burn out from doing too much for everyone else and not taking care of myself. And if you think putting your self first is selfish vs is being selfless, check out this podcast.

I believe we put so much emphasis on the numbers that we forget to analyze the way we feel. I know our body talks, for example if I eat something that is high in sodium, I’ll eventually get a headache and need a nap. Generally, when my mom cooks, its not salty because she has medical issues and doesn’t cook with much salt.

Often I wonder just how “healthy”  Haitian food ranks. Our meals consist of lots of rice and sides include legumes, cooked veggies and meat. I think if the portion sizes were different it wouldn’t be so bad. We use lots of spices in our cooking.

So today is a new day, and I’ve hit reset. No more stress binge eating and time to quit lying to not only my mother but myself too.

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, indoor This is after I’d drop the 27lbs at my brothers wedding. When I go through my facebook photos the number of full body shots go down so clearly I know whats happening. Most of us know what to do to drop weight and be healthy. The difficulty is discipline and being truthful to ones self.

Today I did 30 min of cardio on the treadmill at a incline of 3.5 and a speed of 3.4. It was more like speed walking and I did break out a little sweat. While on the treadmill the only thought that kept crossing my mind was be kind to yourself.

I believe we go through so many thoughts a day, and we easily beat our selves up for what we don’t do. Be Kind to yourself, always. Now get up and get moving!

At 199.4 lbs this is what I’m working with …

Oh and this planet fitness looks way better than the ones near my house!!!

I choose to love me as I am in the body I currently have. There’s always room for improvement. And you’ve got to start somewhere.

 add me!

The Unfinished Piece 

As a creator and artist it’s very easy to come up with new ideas concepts and projects. They are exciting, can create a new buzz but sometimes a project just doesn’t get completed or seen all the way through because the artist “found something new” and exciting to work on. 

I can’t lie I’ve done this. It’s easier to follow through on a project when it’s for someone else and when in getting paid but personal projects … the remain unfinished or I lose interest. 

Ultimately I think it’s a lack of discipline to see something through to the end. 

When o tan track and feild my coach always told me it doesn’t matter how long it takes you, just be sure to cross the finish line. I think he’s right. 

I tend to write my project ideas down, this way it doesn’t become a distraction. Yet lately I’ve been itching to share a project with you. However in order for it to be successful I know I need to pair it with my design efforts this way it doesn’t become another dead project. 

Are you an artist or designer? Can you relate? Have you ever redirected or resurrected dead projects? 

What Do You Want to be when you grow up?

Remember that question as a kid? 

My answer ranged from being a teacher, to a business woman, to a librarian, to a biologist, to a Nurse.  One thing for certain is that we all have many interests. Yet for some odd reason we train our kids to believe they can only be one thing when they grow up. 

Life happens in seasons. 

I had a conversation the other day with some friends and they mentioned how someone we know seems to not know what they want to be. I believe it’s true – but are you what you want to be?

We often ask kids at an early age what they want to be. Not realizing they haven’t had a taste of had of the occupations in existence and the fact that job roles are constantly changing due to the advancement of technology. 

While this may not be everyone else’s experience, it’s often the case that children are in the classroom not really expereincing life or interacting with their surroundings. The most outdoor experience they get is a trip to the zoo, or freetime/recess out side. 

We need to encourage failed trials – like in science class. It’s like testing a theory to see if it works and if it doesn’t you make adjustments until it’s successful. 

As a creative person I’m

Encouraged to take risks, to try out iterations, and to draw and sketch and make models of products until successful. 

Even as a designer ther is still room to tinker and figure out what I’d like to be when I grow up. But I take a moment and ask you:

What do you want to be when you grow up?