Thursday, May 31, 2012

Flashback Friday: Attitude of Gratitude

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Happy Flashback Friday :-) This weekend I'm goingt to my second blog conference of the year.  This one is Blogging While Brown.  Be on the lookout for my recap of the conference. I'm sure I'll learn a lot.  In the mean time link up for the Flashback.

This weeks Flashback, Attitude of Gratitude, is about changing your focus toward gratitude and appreciation.  Do you ever take time to just look around and be appreciative of all your blessings?

Now it's time to LINK UP!!! If you are not familiar with the Flashback here is the deal. Flashback Friday is where we Flashback to our older blog posts and link up! You can also post a link to your Flashback post on the Chasing Joy Facebook Page. Flashback Friday is a great way to rediscover our earlier works and discover some new blogs. Just pick out your link and add it below. Use hashtags #FBF or #FlashbackFriday on twitter to advertise your Flashback post.

Add your link below and be sure to check out AT LEAST TWO other Flashback posts. I suggest the two listed before your post to make it easy. Please leave a comment saying why you selected your Flashback post and what you thought about the other Flashback posts. I'm looking forward to reading all of your Flashbacks.

*Don't forget to grab the I am Chasing Joy and Flashback Friday buttons!

**Also you can get updates from the Chasing Joy Facebook Page right on your I phone (click here) and / or download the Chasing Joy blog directly to your Kindle (click here) :-)

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Garden of Joy, Well Sort of.

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I have not done a wordful/wordless Wednesday post in a while.  When I came out of my house this morning I saw that the flowers in my planter on my front patio had their first bloom.  It was so pretty that I could not resist taking a moment to snap a photo with my camera phone.  Now the really nice thing about this is that this is one of the few annuals that have come back for the 3rd or 4th year in a row.  The sad thing about this is the only planters that are not mostly barren or covered with weeds are the annuals.  I am so late getting my little potted garden going.  I hope there is still hope.  Seeing the front patio full of flowers and color does give me a lot of joy.  It is nice to bring a little nature to my city row house.

Do you keep any sort of garden potted or otherwise?  If so what do you grow?  Have your flowers bloomed?

Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day with A Girl Named Michael

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Happy Memorial Day everyone!  I hope you have been blessed with a day off of work like I have.  Yay for the long weekend.  I have not however taken a day off from Chasing Joy. Today you can find me helping out one of my favorite, have not met in real life but really hope I get the chance to, Bloggy Friends Michael on her blog A Girl Named Michael

Michael did a guest post here on Chasing Joy a little while ago. She recently had a run in with a pair of shoes that left her with a broken wrist.  The bad news is she has not been able to blog as much.  The good news is I get to return the favor and do a guest post on A Girl Named Michael.  A Girl Named Michael is one of my favorite blogs I was a little nervous about my guest post.  So go and check it out and leave some comments letting me know what you think, http://agirlnamedmichael-mj.blogspot.com/.   While you are there poke around and check out the rest of her content. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

Flashback Friday: The Joy of Being Single

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Happy Flashback Friday :-) It's a long weekend for a lot of us with Memorial day on Monday. Who is having or going to a BBQ, and where is my invite? LOL

This weeks Flashback, The Joy of Being Single, will serve as a nice reminder to myself and anyone else who is single but kind wish they weren't, that the single life does comes with it's own perks. What do you like or miss about single life?

Now it's time to LINK UP!!! If you are not familiar with the Flashback here is the deal. Flashback Friday is where we Flashback to our older blog posts and link up! You can also post a link to your Flashback post on the Chasing Joy Facebook Page. Flashback Friday is a great way to rediscover our earlier works and discover some new blogs. Just pick out your link and add it below. Use hashtags #FBF or #FlashbackFriday on twitter to advertise your Flashback post.

Add your link below and be sure to check out AT LEAST TWO other Flashback posts. I suggest the two listed before your post to make it easy. Please leave a comment saying why you selected your Flashback post and what you thought about the other Flashback posts. I'm looking forward to reading all of your Flashbacks.

*Don't forget to grab the I am Chasing Joy and Flashback Friday buttons!

**Also you can get updates from the Chasing Joy Facebook Page right on your I phone (click here) and / or download the Chasing Joy blog directly to your Kindle (click here) :-)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

10 for 10 Challenge: Meditating on Joy

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Stress! :-( Who needs it? Not me. Stress is another one of those things that you cannot experience simultaneously as Joy. Stress is a Joy repellent. It makes you feel awful. Prolonged stress is bad for your health. Symptom of stress that I have encountered include: insomnia, shortness of breath (more like holding my breath without realizing) tummy troubles, break outs, difficulty swallowing, and over eating. Stress sucks!


There are a lot of things people do to combat stress. Some things are not so good. For instance over eating, excessive drinking, self-medicating, over spending and other self-destructive habits. Some positive and healthy things people do to combat stress include exercise, sex, journaling, therapy, music, art, blogging, meditation, prayer, and bible study. There is one particular positive stress management activity that I have been wanting to try, talking about trying, but have not tried.

I am talking about Meditation. The good kind of meditation. Not the Meditating to improve my Psychic warfare "so I don’t have to work for the beast" (See Dating a CAJT) kind of meditation. But I digress. I have been wanting to try meditation for a while, over a year even. I have heard people say that prayer (which I am a believer in) is when you talk to God and meditation is when you quite your mind to hear Him respond. I am not seeking to have some sort of life altering religious experience. I am seeking to improve my concentration, find a new method of stress management, and to just see what it is like.

The stars finally aligned and I received a sign that it is now time for me to stop talking and thinking about meditating and actually start meditating. The signed came in the form of an email at work. Yes good things came come in the form of work emails. Not often but it does happen. I received an email from our occupational health group that advocated using meditation as a form of stress relief. Not only did the email recommend meditation it offered a step by step guide on how to do it.

I no longer have any excuse. So for at least the next 10 days I will be following the instructions below. The basic instructions don't say how long the meditation session should be so I'm going to have a goal of 10 minutes a day. This is such a short amount of time but I know it will be a challenge for me. To sit quietly, not fall asleep, not play on my phone, not watch TV, and not talk to anyone for 10 whole minutes every day for 10 days, ah, a challenge indeed. Will any of you do this 10 day challenge with me???  Here are the basics:

How to Meditate: Meditation Basics
Meditation is a way to relax and renew the mind, body, and the spirit. Meditation is not necessarily about having no thoughts; it’s about having no reactions to your thoughts, so allow the thoughts to come and go. Be gentle and patient with the process.  
  • Relaxed and effortless posture
    • Bring yourself to a relaxed and comfortable posture, either sitting on the floor, in a chair, or lying on your back. If sitting, be aware of the spine being effortlessly extended upward.
  • Release
    • Exhale completely, leaving a slight pause at the end of the exhale.
  • Follow the breath
    • Allow the body to naturally inhale.
    • Mentally say “one” while you inhale.
    • Allow a slight pause before exhaling again.
  • Exhale and release
    • As you exhale, release all tension.
    • Mentally say “and”—or some other single syllable word that holds either neutral or positive connotations while you exhale (words like “love,” “joy,” “fresh,” etc.). You know I'll be saying JOY!!!
  • Continue the cycle
    • Continue the cycle in a slow, relaxed fashion.
    • Remember: Mentally recite “one” for the inhale. Mentally say “Joy” – or your chosen single-syllable word for the exhale. Release tension on the exhale. Each breath is a new beginning. “One” for the inhale signifies that each breath stands alone as a new start, a new moment.
  • Completing the meditation
    • Take your time coming back from the meditation experience. Give yourself a couple of minutes before you bring yourself back to your regular day.
    • Bring yourself back slowly and gently bring your refreshed self back to a new moment with a smile.
  • Enjoy the serenity.

 I got this Basic Instruction from http://www.foh.hhs.gov/calendar/April.html

  
Do you meditate? How does it affect you? Who will accept the challenge and meditate 10 minutes every day for the next 10 days?

Sunday, May 20, 2012

What a Blog Conference Can Teach You: The Joy of Bloggy Boot Camp!!!

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I had such an awesome weekend. If you follow me on twitter or keep up with me on Facebook then you know I attended Bloggy Boot Camp in Philadelphia. I loved it!!! This was my first time attending the conference and no pushups or pop squats were required. I learned so much and I made connections with at least 25 other bloggers. It was so worth it.


I know some of you may be thinking, Was it really? I say yes. A Blog conference can teach you so much. When I attended Blogalicious last year I ended up with an entire series of post detailing what I learned. SITS Bloggy BootCamp was just as informative but I’m going to try and share what I learned, what a blog conference can teach you, in only one blog post.

Let me start by saying all of the speakers were amazing. I learned so much from them. I am now following all of them on twitter and If you blog I highly suggest you do the same. This way we can all benefit from any knowledge they drop in 140 characters or less. Here is the list of speakers:

@TiffanyRom
@SITSGirls
@TipJunkie
@ClassyMommy
@AudreyMcClellan
@AzTalamantez
@DanielleLiss
@ScaryMommy
@CecilyK
@DaliBurgado
@SharonMomof6

Topics these ladies covered included Tips for Blogging Success, VLOGS & Getting Views on YouTube, Expanding Beyond your Blog, Business of Blogging, Writers Workshop, SEO (Search Engine Optimization), and How to Grow Your Site. The truly great thing about this conference is that these topics, while geared toward bloggers, covered information that is useful for any entrepreneur.

Before I hit you with all the practical info that I learned, plan to implement, and hope that you find useful I just want to say one of the best things about a blog conference, or any conference that you voluntarily attend, is being surrounded by like minded people who share your passion. I definitely made new bloggy friends! Everyone was happy and excited to be there. Everyone was alert and energetic and fully engaged. Basically it is the exact opposite of attending a conference or training that you are forced to attend at work. I highly recommend you all attend blog conferences if you blog and any other type of conference or convention focused on your hobbies or interests if your pursuit are something other than blogging. Conferences are rewarding experiences. Now here is what I learned:

  • Treat your blog like a business
  • Do a business plan. There is a 1 day business plan on Oprah.com that was recommended that I plan to use.
  • A small business checklist found on savyblogging.com was also recommended
  • Set Goals – Work with intention
    • Back Casting - This is setting a long term goal and going backward finding all the steps you need to accomplish the goal.
    • Decide on 1 purpose for your blog – Kind of like a mission statement. That way, as opportunities arise you know which ones are a good fit and match your purpose. What is your end game?
  • Establish yourself as an expert. If you act like an expert you will become one
  • If you solve a problem you will make money. Solve a big problem, make big money :-)
  • Expect a payoff for everything you do that takes time away from your family and your life. There are a variety of pay offs that can make it worth it:
    • Higher Traffic
    • Recognition
    • $$$
    • Experience
  • Figure out how much you blog costs you a day. Cost to consider include:
    • How many hours per post
    • Newsletter costs
    • Training and Conferences
    • Software and hardware
    • Assistant (one day I’ll need one :-)
    • Web design
    • Site hosting
    • Logo design
  • Barter for advertising don’t pay for it
  • On average most people only blog for about 3 months (yay I am above average) so make sure to remind your bloggy friends to download your buttons at least quarterly. There is a good chance that the blogs that posted it last quarter are no longer around.
  • Join new social media sites. Even if you don’t end up using it, it prevents someone else from snagging your name. Also you never know what will be the next Facebook or Twitter.
  • Do a Printable – I have to look into this some more myself but doesn’t it sound interesting???
  • Decide your online persona. Show off your best Character Trait
  • Be seen in Real life, deals are made face to face. This is one of my favorites because I love meeting Joy Chasers. I like being reminded that there is another person on the other end of the screen communicating with me.
  • Take Advice from people who have succeeded in the way you want to succeed. You want to make money, take advice from people who are making money. You want to write a book, take advice from people who have written books.
  • Find out what your Brand is. You make think it is one thing but what do your readers think it is. Your brand is how people describe you when you are not in the room. It is what you are known for.
  • Be Ready!!!! Put certain best practices in place so that you are ready when success hits. You don’t know when that will be.
    • Set office hours for working on your blog. Set times to check email so you don’t have to be a slave computer. That way you can be fully engaged with your family or day job when it’s time for that and then be a fully engaged blogger when it is time to blog it up.
  • Know your sell out price and you decide what selling out is. That way you don’t get distracted by what others want or what others describe as an opportunity and accidently sell out for a price that is way too low. Set your sell out price high! Your sell out price is the cost of your integrity.
  • If you do Video Blogs (Vlogs):
    • Decide which ones are worth the time spent on editing. Not all of them will be worth the effort
    • Keep them under a minute
    • Lighting is most important and day light is best
    • Do not be scripted to keep it more real
    • Videos are good when you can speak about a hot topic or be early on a trend
    • Make sure people know your YouTube channel. (YouTube does pay for popular videos). This is my YouTube channel.
    • You can do response videos to other popular YouTube videos
    • Vlogs can lead to other opportunities
      • Blogger Correspondent
      • Spokesperson
      • Video Series
      • And mentioned above YouTube does pay
    • Tag and share your Vlogs
    • Don’t be a talking head, move around, use your phone or other cameras for video, don’t always use the webcam
  • Ways to expand beyond your blog platform:
    • TV – think the pioneer woman
    • Publishing
    • Event Planning
    • Spokes person
    • Consulting
      • Bloggers are well versed in social media companies are looking for our talent.
  • To improve your writing:
    • Write 7 hours a week. That’s only an hour a day if you can spread it out.
    • Try different writing exercises like the 6 word story. I did this as a writing prompt post
    • Start each morning by writing 3 pages by hand to get your creative juices going.
  • Images:
    • You cannot just download pictures off of the internet to use in your post. Even if you cite the image or link back to where you got it, it is still illegal to use if you don’t have permission from the owner. Pictures have to have a creative commons license or Creative commons for creative use (for paid posts) to use on your blog.
  • For better ranking on Google:
    • Use Google Keyword Tool to look up good key words.
    • Use key words in your title, content, and tags.
    • Don’t over use key words though, make it sound natural.
    • Use synonyms for your key words
  • To Grow your Blog:
    • Use Goggle Analytics to:
      • Look at your traffic sources
      • To set Goals (decrease bounce rate, increase page views, increase unique visitors, etc)
    • Have only 1 full post per page to encourage readers to click around for more content
    • Make sure your site is easy to read
    • Make content easy to find with Navigation and Categories
    • Be Interesting and Be Memorable
    • Do Guest Post
      • Do your best work on guest posts. Don’t save the good stuff for your own site.
      • Create a good bio with links to go at the end of your guest post.

Whoa!!! That was a lot of info. I hope I passed on enough info for you to have taken a tip or two but not too much info. After all I want you to go to your own conferences, blog or otherwise. They are truly great experiences, worth the money, and did I mention SWAG Bag (mine came complete with a new shower head, Yummy King’s Hawaiian bread & more).

Don’t you wish you were at Bloggy Boot Camp with me? What is your favorite bit of knowledge from above?

Now come visit me on Facebook to see more pictures from this weekend.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Flashback Friday: Top 10 Signs Its Time To Quit Your Job

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Happy Friday :-) I hope you have something nice planned for the weekend.  I will be attending my first Bloggy Boot Camp  here in Philly.  I am super excited.  I'll be sure to share all that I learn with you.

This weeks Flashback, Top 10 Signs Its Time To Quit Your Job, is light hearted but also food for thought as you wrap up your work week.  Have you ever suddenly quit a job? Tell me about it. 

Go and LINK UP!!! If you are not familiar with the Flashback here is the deal. Flashback Friday is where we Flashback to our older blog posts and link up! You can also post a link to your Flashback post on the Chasing Joy Facebook Page. Flashback Friday is a great way to rediscover our earlier works and discover some new blogs. Just pick out your link and add it below. Use hashtags #FBF or #FlashbackFriday on twitter to advertise your Flashback post.

Add your link below and be sure to check out AT LEAST TWO other Flashback posts. I suggest the two listed before your post to make it easy. Please leave a comment saying why you selected your Flashback post and what you thought about the other Flashback posts. I'm looking forward to reading all of your Flashbacks.

*Don't forget to grab the I am Chasing Joy and Flashback Friday buttons!

**Also you can get updates from the Chasing Joy Facebook Page right on your I phone (click here) and / or download the Chasing Joy blog directly to your Kindle (click here) :-)



Monday, May 14, 2012

Fruity Fashion from Fahionista Class (part 2)

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It only took me a week but I am super excited to share with you the rest of the fashion tips I learned at the Full Figured Fashionista class at BellaNor Boutique. I already told you about the self esteem boost and how realized I need to become my Own Biggest Fan. Then I mentioned the unmentionable and discussed the foundation of good fashion, foundation garments, in part 1. Now, time for me to share the knowledge that BellaNor owner Chanae Davis was dropping.


 
So let me start by saying even though the target audience for the class was full figured women these tips work for all sizes. The tips are about body shape not body size. The class covered 5 body shapes:

 
  1.  Apple a.k.a. Diamond or Oval
  2. Banana a.k.a Rectangle
  3. Pear a.k.a. Triangle
  4. Strawberry a.k.a. inverted Triangle
  5. Hourglass (I guess there is no fruit shaped like an hourglass)

So which one are you? If you are like me you may have some idea but are not entirely sure. I went into the class thinking I was a Pear shape. I stood up and my fellow Fashionista classmates looked me up and down, without any judgment, and came to a majority decision that pear is the fruit I closes resemble. LOL

 
Here is the breakdown:

  •  Apples have undefined waists and carry their weight in the middle. Famous Apples you may have heard of include, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Rosie O’Donnell, Tyra Banks, and Oprah Winfrey.
  • Bananas have bust and hips that are about the same width, undefined waist, with arms and legs that are proportionally slender. They may appear shorter and heavier than they are. Famous Bananas include Gabrielle Union, Cameron Diaz, Nicole Kidman, and Queen Latifah
  • Pears have fuller butt, hips, and thighs (Old school term would be bottom heavy) and have narrower bust than hips along with a defined waist. Popular Pears include Jennifer Lopez, Kim Kardashian, Michelle Obama, and Beyonce’. Lucky me to be in such good company with these ladies :-)
  •  Strawberries have full bust, a well defined waist, with Narrow Hips and usually long legs (Old school term would be top heavy). Your Berries would be Demi Moore, Naomi Campbell, America Ferrera, and Jessica Simpson.
  • Hourglasses have hips and bust that are the same width, a well defined waist and weight is gained evenly on the upper and lower body. We all know the most famous Hourglass that ever lived, Marilyn Monroe, but in her company is Kate Winslet, Mariah Carey, Salma Hayek, and Scarlett Johansson.
The great thing is beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. What an amazing fruit salad we all make. Have you identified yourself yet? Which fruit are you, or, are you an hourglass?

 
Now that you know which fruit you are, what your body shape is, you can apply the tips. Before I go into the specifics I will say that my favorite tip, which I already mentioned in Are You Your Own Biggest Fan, is to show off the parts of your body that you feel the best about. When you feel good about yourself you have a confidence that shows and radiates beauty whether you implement any other tips or not. But if you’re like me, you’re probably saying just get to the tips already.

 
Fabulous Fashionista Fashion tips by body type:

 
  • Apples – Use accessories (earrings & necklaces to draw the eye to your shoulders and face. Go for low necklines (woot! Show off them girls), untucked tops, dresses and tops that flow throw or skim the waistline, and straight or slightly flared skirts.
  • Bananas – Go for belts and pieces that cinch in at the waist to give you more curves, wrap dresses, and semi-fitted clothes.
  • Pears – (That’s Me) Pick Accessories and designs that draw attention to the upper body, Medium to high necklines ( I will stick with medium), A-line skirts and dresses, lower rise(but not necessarily “low rise”) pants with boot leg or leg that fall strait from the hip.
  • Strawberries – Chose tops and dresses that show off the waist, A-line skirts, flowing fabrics, with low to medium necklines, and 3 quarter length sleeves.
  • Hourglasses - Opt for low to medium low necklines, dresses and belts to emphasize the waist, and straight and slightly flared pants and shirts.

Thanks to Ms. Monroe the Hourglass figure has become the desired look or ideal body type, with full but not too full bust and hips with smaller waist. All of the tips above are designed to either show off the hourglass (if that’s you) or give the illusion of the hourglass (if you are one of the fruits like me :-)

 
Whatever tips you take or don’t take I hope you I was successfully able to translate most of what I learned at the class. The biggest take away of all is looking and feeling your best offers a bit of personal confidence and Joy that is definitely worth Chasing.

 
So what do you think of these tips? Can you identify your body shape? Do you already follow any of the tips for your shape? If not do you think you will take any of the tips for your own?

 

Friday, May 11, 2012

Flashback Friday: Life Lessons II

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Happy Friday :-) I hope you had a great week.  Now it's Flashback Time.  This weeks Flashback, Life Lessons II, is exactly that, the life lesson I learned about what happens when you make your goals known.  Do you usually tell everyone about your goals or keep them to yourself???

Go and LINK UP!!! If you are not familiar with the Flashback here is the deal. Flashback Friday is where we Flashback to our older blog posts and link up! You can also post a link to your Flashback post on the Chasing Joy Facebook Page. Flashback Friday is a great way to rediscover our earlier works and discover some new blogs. Just pick out your link and add it below. Use hashtags #FBF or #FlashbackFriday on twitter to advertise your Flashback post.

Add your link below and be sure to check out AT LEAST TWO other Flashback posts. I suggest the two listed before your post to make it easy. Please leave a comment saying why you selected your Flashback post and what you thought about the other Flashback posts. I'm looking forward to reading all of your Flashbacks.

*Don't forget to grab the I am Chasing Joy and Flashback Friday buttons!
**Also you can get updates from the Chasing Joy Facebook Page right on your I phone (click here) and / or download the Chasing Joy blog directly to your Kindle (click here) :-)



Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Chasing Joy’s Tips From Fashionista Class (part 1)

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Now that we have all decided to be our own Biggest Fan we need to look the part. While what on the inside matters way more than what’s on the outside, the outside is important too. I know I feel better when I look better and feel great when I think I look great. Notice I said I. I’m not talking about pleasing others or following trends or trying to measure up to some sort of ideal. I’m talking about deciding that I am my own biggest fan and I want to feel great and look my best. So how do we do that?


That was the point of the Full Figured Fashionista Class held at BellaNor Boutique. If you read my post from earlier this week, Are You Your Own Biggest Fan, I know you are anxiously awaiting the tips and pointers I picked up at BellaNor’s. So here goes:

Shape wear!!!!
Go get some! Shape wear is for all sizes and comes in all sizes. It is not just for fuller figures. Most of us could benefit from a tighter look. Now I’m not talking about hard core girdles or corsets or things that are uncomfortable. I’m talking about the kinds you can get a most department stores and even target that are designed to smooth you out and hide the lumps and bumps you don’t want to show while lifting the ones that you do want to show. I personally have used Spanx and the Assets brands. Make sure you buy it in your actual size. Buying it in a smaller size will be counterproductive as the shape wear will give you bulges instead of smoothing things out. To maintain your shape wear do not fully dry your shape wear in the dryer after washing it. Treat it as you would bras and hosiery to get longer life. Don’t be afraid to wear it every day. Buy the correct size and the brand that you find most comfortable so that you can wear it daily. I always considered shape ware something to put on under that special dress. It never occurred to me to wear it on a regular. Now I’m thinking why wouldn’t I want a smooth silhouette all the time???

Get Fitted!!!
Go and get a proper bra fitting. Clothes often will not look right if you have on the wrong bra because they are cut with the expectation that your boobs will be in line with the middle of your arm. Most women are wearing the wrong size. Here are a few ways to tell if you wearing the wrong size. When you look in the mirror standing sideways does your bra have a see saw effect? Meaning is the back of the bra higher than the front. Your bra should be even in the front and back. When you take your straps down your boobs should not fall down with it. The shoulder straps should not be the main support of the bra. Lastly you should not have a uni-boob. Each breast should be fully in the cup and the middle of the bra should be flush against your skin, giving you two separate boobs and not one uni-boob. Two is better than one :-)

Don’t Postpone The Pretty!!!
Chanea (the lovely owner of BellaNor) says she gets many women coming into the shop saying “oh I’m not buying any clothes because I’m losing weight”. If you are in the process of losing weight or getting in shape or experiencing any other type of transition phase don’t deprive yourself of nice fitting garments. Looking and feeling your best should not have a size prerequisite to it. Also, looking in the mirror and liking what you see during the weight loss process can be a huge motivator to keep up the good work. I’m not saying break the bank. Get just a few pieces in your current smaller size that will help you look your best even if you are not at your goal.

Wow! I really got a lot out of this class. So much so that I’m going to break now and pick this up a little later with more tips. I don’t want you to get bored before I get to the good stuff :-)

So for now, mention your unmentionables. Do you wear shape wear? Do you wear it every day or just on special days? And when was your last Bra Fitting? And for any fellas reading, I heard there are shape wear tee shirts for men. Would you or have you worn one?

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Can't Come To The Blog

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Hello. You have reached Chasing Joy.  Sorry I can not come to the blog today.  I am currently off of the blog spending some time at Girlfriendology.  Please contact me there on my very real post about How Not To Be A Hater.  Also, Please  leave a message with your name, email, and web link and I will return your visit as soon as possible :-)

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Are You Your Own Biggest Fan???

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Me & the Lovely Models Jese (left) & Collene (center)
I just came in from one of the best Sunday Afternoons that I’ve had in a long time. Today I attended Real Women Have Curves: Fashion Tips for the Full-Figured Fashionista at the lovely BellaNoir Boutique in Philly. I was already planning to write a blog post sharing what I learned at this event. What I had not planned or expected was to leave the event super excited to tell you all how inspired, encouraged, and empowered I felt.


The class was structured to cover the different body types and how to best dress them for optimum hotness. We also were to hear from two plus sized models about undergarments, shape wear, self-esteem and loving yourself. I would describe the class structure as a self-esteem boost and self love lesson emphasizing how to be your Own Biggest Fan and look the part. As we discussed Beyonce performing in quadruple layers of spanx, strawberry, pear, and apple body shapes, along with the fashion disaster that is the uniboobs (all of which I’ll get into later) the overall topic of self acceptance and loving one’s self was on going.

The class was interactive and we all went around the room sharing what our favorite and least favorite body parts were. Both of the models, Jese Gary, and Colleen Stovall of Short Curvy Fierce emphasized knowing what you feel your best features are and showcasing them. If you love your girls then put them out there. Not in the girls gone wild lift your top kind of way. But in the just the right amount of cleavage, jewelry and flattering top that makes you feel like a million bucks, kind of way. If you feel great about how you look then no one else can tell you any different. Become your Own Biggest Fan.

When Jese said she was her Own Biggest Fan, I had to ask myself, Am I My Own Biggest Fan??? Unfortunately, answering honestly, I have to say No. When I have talked about losing my dad I have often said that I have lost my biggest fan. My dad was my biggest fan, not because he was any more supportive or encouraging than my mom, he was just louder. A Lot louder LOL! :-) I was very blessed to have one of those dads who made sure that I always felt beautiful, smart, and capable of just about anything. So now it is time for me to step up to the plate, take advantage of that awesome foundation of support, encouragement, and praise and become My Own Biggest Fan.

Colleen spoke about being confident in who you are and loving yourself and how life is to short to not enjoy it. Some people naturally have that confidence while other come into it a little later. Colleen confidence has taken her from being camera shy to a plus sized model. She has become her Own Biggest Fan and is excited to share her beauty in print and on the runway.

While we talked of self acceptance and putting our best foot, leg, or whatever your favorite feature is forward we also talked about being healthy. As we acknowledge that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes and that not everyone was meant to be a size 4 we were reminded that health is the important thing. Not only looking our best, but feeling our best and having mobility are top priority. It all comes down to what’s on the inside, inside of our bodies in terms of health and inside of our minds regarding confidence and self esteem.

So, before I share with you all of the fashion tips I learned about different body types and how to best dress them for optimum hotness, tell me Are you Your Own Biggest Fan???

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Flashback Friday: 100 Things About Me

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It is Friday again.  Ever since we started doing Flashback Friday Friday comes twice as fast. I'm not complaining though. This has been a great week.  I created an I Phone App so you can get updates from the Chasing Joy Facebook Page righto on your phone (click here).  I also registered this Blog on Amazon so you can now download Chasing Joy directly to your Kindle (click here)  :-) 

Now it's time for Flashback Friday once again !! This weeks Flashback, 100 Things About Me, is exactly that.  So get to know me a little better and tell me something abut yourself.  Also, if you decide to do your own 100 things list let me know so I can check it out and learn all about you.
Now it's time to LINK UP!!! If you are not familiar with the Flashback here is the deal. Flashback Friday is where we Flashback to our older blog posts and link up! You can also post a link to your Flashback post on the Chasing Joy Facebook Page. Flashback Friday is a great way to rediscover our earlier works and discover some new blogs. Just pick out your link and add it below. Use hashtags #FBF or #FlashbackFriday on twitter to advertise your Flashback post.

Add your link below and be sure to check out AT LEAST TWO other Flashback posts. I suggest the two listed before your post to make it easy. Please leave a comment saying why you selected your Flashback post and what you thought about the other Flashback posts. I'm looking forward to reading all of your Flashbacks.

Don't forget to grab the I am Chasing Joy and Flashback Friday buttons!

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