great expectations.

This is something that has been on my heart and mind a lot lately, and something I’ve posted about a handful of times before (see below related posts). I actually believe that one of my “life messages,” if you want to call it that, is encouraging women not to settle. Not just in regards to relationships, but in all areas of life. This quote helped put that ideas into a new perspective for me, and I wanted to share it with you.

I talk often about having hopes/dreams/desires – and I absolutely think that’s important – but lately I’m realizing what a huge difference it makes to have a YES from God on those areas.

Because here’s the thing. When we decide on our own hopes and desires, we can easily second guess ourselves. When things don’t seem to be working out – or when a “good enough” version comes around we think, “well maybe my hopes were just too high?”

But when GOD gives you the dream or desire, there’s no second guessing. There’s no settling. It’s time to start letting HIM set our expectations.

It’s not based on entitlement, but on trust. When you trust that was He has for you is far beyond what you could even dream up or achieve for yourself, it kind of doesn’t really matter what else happens or what comes along. It makes it easy to rely on the TRUTH of what He has given you, rather than on (ever-fleeting) emotions.

This is something I’ve been experiencing a lot over the past few months. I can’t exactly explain it other than the whole “when you know you know” sort of thing. I’ve gotten a very clear YES from God in certain areas of my life, so when something seems off from that…I know with certainty that it is.

So I want to encourage you today – have you asked God what He has for you? Have you asked Him if the things you’re dreaming for or working toward are part of His plan? Grab a journal and write down your answers. It can be a bit of a scary question to ask, but I can promise you that if you leave room for the impossible in your life, God will fill in the spaces…and then some.

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In what area do you need to let God set your expectations? 

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Related posts:
Life: Unfiltered
How To Stay On Course
More Than The Counterfeit
On Knowing Your Identity
The Thing About Striving
Why I Don’t Do Christianity

the best fashion advice i could give (+ 7 tips for more flattering outfits).

Yesterday I sat down to write a post on how to dress for your body type, and when I started typing I got a serious case of deja vu. I did a little searching on my own blog to realize I had already written a post on just that.

HA. Guess that’s what happens when you’ve been blogging for 5+ years…

Anyway, it’s been quite a while, so I figured I’d resurrect that post + add a few things. Because a refresher on looking damn fine never hurt anyone right? 😉

But before going into my pointers, I thought I’d share what I think it all boils down to when it comes to fashion/style.

Wear clothes that make you feel YOUR best. Don’t let the clothes wear you.

In New York I’m surrounded by so many fashionistas who might disagree with that. A lot of women are all about the “art” aspect of fashion, and that’s totally okay, but I personally prefer to go for flattering styles over trendy ones. Of course sometimes that means I give in to certain trends, but not all of them (which I talk about a bit below).

I may not be an expert when it comes to the latest designers and fashion trends, but over the years I do think I’ve gotten pretty good at learning how to wear clothes that flatter my body type while still embracing my personal style. With so many trends and styles coming and going, this isn’t always an easy thing to master. So here are the tips that I always use to help me find the most figure-flattering looks.

fashion advice

1) know your body type, and flaunt accordingly.
Don’t worry – I’m not about to pull the whole pear, apple, athletic, and petite body type “rules” on you (I personally cringe when I see those in magazines). While it’s true that all women are shaped differently, only you can decide what areas of your body are best flaunted and/or downplayed. So ask yourself – what is your favorite body feature? If it’s your legs, go with more skirts, shorts, and skinny jeans. Your shoulders? Strapless tops. Your tummy? Form-fitting dresses…and so on.

(If you don’t know the answer to that – think about what other people compliment you on most! Or just ask your friends or significant other.) From there, do some research. I’m always seeking inspiration from blogs and Pinterest. Start a style board with clothes and looks that you think would not only flatter your body the most, but also make you feel the most comfortable and beautiful.

2) know when to say no to trends.
When I see someone who isn’t dressed to flatter their body, 90% of the time it’s because they tried to embrace a trend that just wasn’t right for them. While I do think there are ways to make trends work for everyone, be aware that you have to be really careful with some. For example – as much as I want to, I just can’t make the flare pants trend work on my 5’3″ self.

3) show some skin. keyword: some.
Showing some skin can absolutely be a way to draw attention to your best assets, but they key is to not overdo it. For example, if you wear a mini skirt to show off your legs, balance it out by wearing a long-sleeved top our blazer. Or if you wear a low cut shirt, keep it classy by wearing with pants or a pencil skirt.

4) balance it out.
On a sort of similar note, I think it’s really important to balance the proportions of your outfit. For example, go with a looser shirt/blouse if you’re wearing shorts or skinny pants. The right proportions in that sense can actually make you look much thinner than wearing a tight outfit head-to-toe. I know a lot of girls shy away from wearing flowy/baggy clothes, but the right pieces can actually be much more flattering than wearing skin tight clothes.

5) when it doubt, wear black.
Self-explanatory 😉 I wear all black most of the time because it’s easy and always looks put together. You can then mix things up with accessories, changing up your hair/makeup, etc.

all black

6) heels can make all the difference.
Not sure if your outfit is flattering? Try adding heels. It can take just about any look and bring it up a notch by making you appear taller and slimmer without changing anything else.

7) add a feminine touch.
A lot of my favorite fashion trends right now are sort of masculine ones – military, denim, minimalist, etc. It’s definitely still possible, though, to implement these styles and make them look flattering just by adding some feminine touches. Like I just mentioned, adding heels is one of the best ways to do this. Other great flattering feminine touches are lace, floral prints, jewelry, etc.

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What “rules” or tips do you follow for flattering your body type?
Which of these tips do you agree with the most?

four layer pumpkin dream dessert.

Prepare yourselves…

Four Layer Pumpkin Dream Dessert

This is hands down my new favorite dessert. I’m a sucker for anything that combines a creamy fluffy texture with a great crunch, and this dessert has exactly that.

(And let’s be real – I’m a total sucker for all things pumpkin. #BASIC)

Four Layer Pumpkin Dream Dessert

Making all of the separate layers can be a tad much (in the form of dishes, at least) but it’s simple and pretty much impossible mess up.

Four Layer Pumpkin Dream Dessert

I wish I could take credit for this amazing recipe, but it’s yet another winning Pinterest find.

The only difference is that I subbed the pecans for graham crackers – which kept the great crunch but (I think) added an even better flavor component.

Four Layer Pumpkin Dream Dessert

Click here for the original recipe!

ridding vs replacing.

hope

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the idea of giving up.

Don’t worry – this post isn’t going to be as pessimistic as that suggests 😉

Recently I’ve seen a handful of articles online addressing when and why it’s important to give up certain things in life. And then of course there’s the countless “inspirational” quotes on Pinterest saying things like:

“If it doesn’t matter, get rid of it.”

“Saying yes to happiness means saying no to things and people that stress you out.”

“If you ever find yourself in the wrong story…leave.”

I’ll be the first to admit that those quotes have resonated with me. I found them all on my own Pinterest board, in fact. Don’t get me wrong – I get it. I understand that there is a time and a place in life to give up on things that are unhealthy or harmful. But lately, quotes + articles centered around the idea of giving up have left me feeling so…icky. Defeated. And it has got me wondering if sometimes in an effort to free ourselves from painful things, we’re going about it all wrong.

Maybe I’m missing the point. Maybe I’m looking too much into something that is just mere semantics. But, what if those semantics – the words we speak over our lives and let resonate with us – what if they affect us more than we realize? 

I think it’s important to look at the fruit that certain beliefs and thoughts have in our lives. For example, any time I’ve “given up” or “stopped wasting my time” on something, it never left me a better person in the end. Instead it left me feeling defeated, fearful, and empty.

Yes – getting rid of unhealthy things in your life is important. It IS a good thing. But even more important is REPLACING those unhealthy things with something else. Something positive. Something that will ADD to your life.

So instead of just getting rid of fear – replace it with PEACE.

Instead of just getting rid of your worries about the future – replace those worries with HOPE.

If cutting out unhealthy relationships – replace them with the right ones.

Instead of speaking over your life that you’re giving up – shift your focus on what you DO want. Be expectant!

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What are your thoughts on this? What in your life needs some replacing right now?

 

Related posts:

how to stay on course
how to get out of a rut
choose joy
how to deal with a bad day
life: unfiltered
strategically unstrategic

surprise! say hello to Basics.

If you follow me on social media, you’ve probably gathered that the reason I’ve been so MIA here on GML is because I just launched a new brand with Jessi.

Say hello to Basics NYC! A faith-based minimalist fashion & lifestyle brand.

Basics NYC

So far we just have a few designs, but we’re excited to roll out a few more within the next couple of months.

Basics NYC

Jessi and I have actually been working on + keeping Basics a secret for around 6 months. Over the summer it started to take off on its own, so we figured it was time to make things official! So we had a launch party here in New York last week, and it was incredible to have so much support from our friends and family 🙂

If you’re interested you can follow Basics on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.

speakable fall sale {extended for GML readers!}

A few days ago a Speakable Fall Sale started, but I was so busy I wasn’t able to share it with my favorite people – YOU!

The sale was supposed to end tonight, but since I took so long to post this I’ve decided to extend the sale for GML readers.

Speakable Be Still necklace

Head over to the Speakable website and receive 15% off your entire order by entering promo code FALL15GML upon checkout.

That includes all necklaces, and our brand new bracelets!

Speakable bracelet

speakable

speakable

Let me know if you have any questions. xoxo