Unboxing New Day Designer Planner

Aug 31, 2015

 I am thrilled to show you all the unboxing of my brand new Day Designer!  I loved the packaging very much and cannot wait to put it to use! It is almost exactly what I expected. I will be posting a review on my thoughts about it after getting some use out of it. What I am looking forward to most is being intentional with my day, and strategic in my planning. I love the little details on the the daily pages like "Daily Gratitude". I believe the design of this planner will help me greatly.
Can't wait to be back after actually breaking it in! Check out my video and leave any comments or questions you have so I can keep it in mind at the time of my review! Happy Planning!
Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored.

                                           
                                          


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New Planner, Again?

Aug 28, 2015

The Day Designer - AUG Edition
You might very well think I'm crazy, and I don't blame you. After utilizing my Rifle Paper Co. 17 mo. planner (which I did a post on here), I realize I'm not truly satisfied with the space provided. I plan too strategically and I found myself keeping up with a bunch of other forms of notes, stickies, and papers to strategize my days accordingly. I've decided to keep my super pretty Rifle planner (I really love it) for memory-keeping; kinda like a scrap book diary (i.e. noting everything my family and I do, special moments, and current events while actively decorating it as I have previously done with my #Filofax + #KateSpadeAgenda. I will revisit it on a weekly basis and update it! I am considering posting monthly recaps in the planner category of the blog since so many of you love it. It is so fun! I love the planner community!  
A glance inside...
So after that realization and much thought, I decided to invest in the #DayDesigner to plan my day/week/month strategically, with more details, thanks to the space! It dedicates an entire page to a day. It's been over a year in a half since hearing about the Day Designer by Whitney English and seeing glimpses of it via Instagram, but I just couldn't get myself to spend $59 on a spiral bound planner. I can't lie, I was pretty sold on this new design. I couldn't resist the beautiful emerald green! The August edition is out now (Aug '15 - JUL '16) and I thought it was perfect since its around my blogging anniversary and that is what I am most busy with these days besides being a wifey + momma! Once I did a more thorough research, I found that maybe it would be worth a try. Well, I guess I will see! I know all my #planneraddict and #paperaddict friends understand!

Anyway, good news for you, you will see pretty pages of #plannerdecor from both planners, although the Day Designer will be a matter of strict getting-down-to-business and in depth personal/blog planning*! You know I can't help but place some washi-tape or stickers here and there! I'm hoping to reach "planner peace". Hopefully it'll be as functional as I predict it to be and suit my needs. I'm tracking it like a lunatic and am looking forward to receiving it in a few days! I'm so excited to share about it with you! Stay tuned for an update post, perhaps an unboxing and after that a review. It's so pretty and that alone inspires me! Plus a little early birthday treat to myself won't hurt! 

**Photo Credit: The Day Designer site & team

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5 Ways To: Style Workspace

Aug 26, 2015

Today I’m bringing you 5 classic, aesthetic ideas to add a little life to your workspace or office area. It is so important to feel inspired once we are in this place to become more engaged and productive with our work. There are a few elements which have encouraged that in my life. Here are some staple pieces that will not only liven your atmosphere, but add that little dose of creativity and/or inspirational boost you may be missing!
I hope you’re having a great week! Thank you for watching!
                    

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Honorable Mention: MAC Men Love Mystery

Aug 24, 2015

MAC Men Love Mystery (matte finish)
You know when you gravitate towards a lipstick like everyday? That’s whats happening here. MAC’s latest matte line of lippies brings us this beauty Men Love Mystery, and I am head over heels! I love lavender shades with blue undertones. I feel like it compliments my olive skin tone. It is the perfect late-summer to autumn shade; which is coming right up. My favorite thing about this color is that it fades so nicely after 4-5 hours of wear. It becomes a subtle "your lip, but better" shade. If you’re at all familiar with MAC’s popular “Up the Amp” from their amplified collection, this is basically the matte version. I am so grateful they are carrying this permanently, because I will definitely be repurchasing. I would say its my favorite lipstick at the moment.

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Justified Purchase: Lorac Pro 2

Aug 18, 2015

Its the perfect balance of matte and shimmer in a palette! After picking up the Lorac PRO 2 Palette, I have no regrets. Knowing about their first and best-selling PRO palette, the Lorac Pro original, I decided to give this one a go. With a more diverse choice of shades than the first, you can go from a simple, everyday look to an intense smokey, night look! All in one palette, promoting it an essential piece in my collection. 
Complimentary Eye Shadow Primer 
This palette retails for $42. It is definitely a more high-end purchase, but as you can read from the title, I feel the quality and pigment of these shadows is totally worth it. You get 16 shadows, plus a primer. I calculated 42 into 16 and was left with an average of 2.62, so I just go with thinking I have spent a little under $3 per shadow square. If you're someone other than a professional make-up artist, this item will go a long way. To its defense, in the past I have had to even dispose of some palette's because they have expired under my use- in other words, you would probably go a long while (maybe a year or so) without having to re-pucharse. 
Matte Swatches 
As soon as I dipped my fingers in these shades to test out its texture, I was more than impress. Its claim of velvety-smooth is so precise. My favorite matte shades would have to be the plum and navy. Those two colors stuck out so much to me that they were actually the influence behind purchasing the entire palette. Luckily, it did not disappoint!
Shimmer Swatches
The shimmer shades are so dreamy! I love to add a glow to my look once in a while. The chrome shade may even serve as a highlighter!  
Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored. All photos shown and opinions stated are my own.
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Timeless Jewels

Aug 13, 2015

Lately I've been obsessed with simple necklaces and ear pieces. I have loved jelwery since I could ever remember! However, I find that these days my style is as simplified as could be. The delicacy in these pieces deem them as classic, and it seems regardless of what I pair them with, it fits appropriately. Three of these gems are very special to me because they were sent from my mother, who resides in the Dominican Republic. 

Gift from my mama!
The tale of the Hamsa is it wards off "the evil eye" otherwise known as any malicious wishes toward someone who happens to be unaware. The concept and significance varies among different cultures, but in mine, we grew up believing these pieces would measure up against it. The Nazar is an eye-shaped amulet which also ties with beliefs of protection from the evil eye. 

Hamsa

I fell in love with white marble a few months ago when I was thinking about designs for my future home and what I wanted it to look like. I dream of white marble walls and white marble kitchen tops. It is such a beautiful and clean stone! I honestly cannot get enough of it, and recently I was happy to find that I could even wear it! I found these gems without even looking for them one evening at the mall. The earrings are from Charlotte Russe, and the necklace is from Forever 21. I have also seen some bracelets and rings with the special stone. It is definitely a timeless piece.




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Notes of Grace 001: Self Discovery + Self Love

Aug 11, 2015

azariahlioness.tumblr.com
Read my intro to Notes of Grace HERE 

I was looking through my Tumblr page which I have posted on for years now and felt so inspired to share about a time when I felt really lost and misunderstood. I used my Tumblr as a public journal and it contained everything about me or my mind that I wanted everyone to see with no embarrassment or shame. I used nothing but pictures and words to lay out what ever was felt in the moment. I will always be inspired when I am free to be a promote who I am as a human being, and what I find internal beauty in. I actively used my page when I was under all of these do's and don't from the church and the body of believers I was growing up around. I felt a little suppressed I believe you could say and conditioned to believe some things were inappropiate, when really they were not. I found this so frustrating. It seems to me when I am in a crowd listening to a speaker, every one is clapping and shouting in agreement to what is being taught or said, and I am the one skeptical in the group. I felt if I had been weak-minded I could have easily been mislead, and I thank God I am able to look pass what one might use with a negative intention, and be able to sight the beauty within the matter. 

I feel like it is so incredibly important to be in tune with yourself and your belief. I had to separate what others thought of the world and what others deemed as "bad" and "ugly" - for lack of better words. I had to come to grounds with everything good under the sun being carefully created by something/someone greater than me and I had to respect it. I found great things in small details and that is where my journey began. I began to look and explore in places otherwise known as "dark" by others. I wanted to break boundaries and enter places that were not "acceptable".  I wanted to touch what others were afraid to feel. I began to do this, carefully, with my mind. Watching my thought process, I began to learn of the world and who I was in it and what I wanted. For a little while I decided to be selfish. Granted, I was in the process of becoming an adult and being moved to seeing things through different lenses. A part of me believes in selflessness, but a great side of me believes in some degree of selfishness. It might sound contradicting, but both reveal elements of who we are and what we stand for. 

Today, I am young. I am a month away from turning 23, and my journey of self discovery and self love is far from finished. You can keep up with my Tumblr and growth, in a sense, here. I hope you gain something, too. Experience, feeling, space, thought, detail - have all contributed greatly to who I am. Free yourself a little. I encourage you to see big things in simple subjects. Respect everything around you and voice what you

                                           
Till next time!

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Introducing: Notes of Grace

Hello! I quickly want to introduce to you a new series that will be held here on my blog, and over on my YouTube channel (which you can view and subscribe HERE). "Notes of Grace" is simply a name to combine chatty content. The 'talks' will either be me on video, or simply notes on my blog regarding a theme or topic. You can expect lifestyle chats, tips & how to's (for example: starting a blog, starting a YouTube channel), my thoughts on life matters (facing rejection, fear, depression, growing up), and so forth.

I'm excited for this and definitely look forward to putting a little bit more of me out there. I invite you to listen and/or suggest any subjects. If you have any questions or want any recommendations or tips, you can leave me a comment on my social media platforms (Instagram & Twitter are quickest for me to see) or you can E-mail me: alba@gracefullyalba.com! Kindness and open-mindedness are welcome!
See you soon!


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The Oversized Trouser

Aug 5, 2015


Welcome back! Yesterday, I instagrammed about my blogs new look. I am obsessed! I worked for hours strategically tweaking and perfecting little areas to reflect my style and make my blog most fitting to me. I hope you enjoy this new layout as much as I do! I'm so thankful to have you here!

ON TO THE LOOK

It is no surprise that my choice of wear is that of relaxed and effortless. Trousers have been my thing for a while. I love the diversity this piece gives! This color and particular pair is one of my go-to's. I could appreciate the light-weight fabric (which gives that effortless effect I'm always aiming towards). There is a lot going on already with the high-waist and the flare. It is a stand out piece not to be over done, so I balanced out the look with a comfortable crop top. I love this because my curves are highlighted and the look screams summer! I kept flats to keep the look casual. 
Tank & Trousers: Forever21 Flats: H&M Bracelets: ALDO Watch: Nixon
Thank you for reading!

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