This is For All You Girls

In honor of International Women’s Day, I wanted to take some time to not only reflect on what I think feminism means to me, but also take a minute to speak about the incredible, empowering, and supportive band of women Katilyn Bristowe created with a simple podcast.

This year’s theme for International Women’s Day is Press for Progress – in the time of #metoo, Time’s Up, and public figures standing up to unequal pay, this is a huge deal. Whether the progress be for a more consistent justice system, a push for equal pay, more trustworthy leaders, gaining more women in leadership positions, or something we haven’t even thought of yet.

The idea of feminism has gotten so violently stretched, altered, mangled, and attacked there are now so many people that are WILDLY against even the thought of the movement. It originated to promote equality between genders. Its purpose, or at least in my eyes, is to:

  • Fight that your daughters, wives, sisters, and mothers get paid just as much as their male counterparts.
  • To ensure rape survivors are able to get justice without getting bombarded with judgement and shaming.
  • Break the glass ceiling and allow women to gain access to the same powerful positions that men have.
  • To create a world where women are appreciated for what they bring to the table, not for how many heads they turn.

It’s time to go back to THIS idea of feminism, not the man hating ‘trend’ it has so sadly become. It takes a village to succeed, and that village includes both men and women standing together to make it happen.

And now, for a woman who has become a role model for so many – Kaitlyn Bristowe. She has quickly become one of, if not the, most loved Bachelorette. She is by far the most relatable and empowering person that came from the show. She created a podcast, which led to a Facebook group, which then led to 10+ subgroups that are all constantly FLOODING with female empowerment and support. I can honestly say that these (almost) 14,000 women are some of my most fantastic friends.

When you scroll down this feed, you see nothing but positive pictures and posts; members asking for suggestions on outfits and HUNDREDS of comments telling them how amazing they look, brokenhearted girls looking for some uplifting words of encouragement, hilarious stories and confessions followed by hundreds more comments confessing even more hilarious things, threads of pen pals groups, and so many more incredible things. These international Facebook groups have set up more local groups – Chicago, Nashville, NYC – they’ve all had meet ups to grab dinner or drinks and have gained real friendships from it all.

I have never in my life seen a group filled with such support, love, and encouragement – especially from thousands of women who don’t even know each other. THIS is what women supporting women is, and THIS should be the norm. Thank you to all of you amazing women who never fail to make me smile and to never fail to support each other.

Thank you, Kaitlyn Bristowe for bringing us all together. Thank you for giving us all a safe haven to talk about everything from clothing, to sex, to break ups, to poop, to confessions, to relationships, to friendships, to decor, to illnesses, to family. Thank you for showing us what it means to be REAL. Thank you for showing us we don’t always need filters on our photos, and it’s okay to post some Realstagrams every now and then. Thank you for being absolutely hilarious and giving us all a good laugh TWICE a week now!

This Women’s Day, let’s remember why we’re all here. Let’s remember that everyone is fighting their own battle and that everyone needs some help sometimes. Let’s remember that equality is what we should all be fighting for, but we don’t need to shoot other people down to get there. Most importantly, let’s remember how important it is to stick together and support each other. ♥

Take it away, Martina!


Dear Ed Sheeran

Thank you. Thank you for writing the single handedly most perfect song to capture my first dance with my future husband.

I really, truly could not ask for a better song – a song that describes us more – for this perfect moment.

We are definitely huge fans of yours, we have seen you live and have come to the conclusion that you are the most talented artist. It is truly incredible what you can do with just yourself and a few microphones.

We have been together for a long time, and have bounced from song to song multiple times. The second we heard Perfect, we knew: there was no question that we wouldn’t ever find a more perfect song.

The first time I heard it I was actually misty eyed with shock that it was so immensely on point with our lives and our relationship.

“We were just kids when we fell in love, not knowing what it was.”

We started dating when we were 17; just a couple seniors in high school. We met at work, in our minimum wage paying movie theater job (thanks Gold Class Cinemas!). We spent every day together, even though we went to different high schools. I would leave school and go directly to his house before work, half the time we’d be doing homework or he’d be sleeping but at least we were hanging out. We had two proms that were back to back weekends. We left our movie theater job to go to a new job so we could still spend more time together.

“I will not give you up this time.”

After three and a half years, we called it quits and spent a little time apart. It. Sucked.
I never want to go through that ever again, and honestly I wouldn’t even wish it on my worst enemy.

“I whispered underneath my breath But you heard it, darling, you look perfect tonight”

I don’t think I’ve ever told him this, and I’m not sure if he even remembers, but one night after we got back together, we were laying down and I was falling asleep. He kissed my forehead and whispered “you’re perfect” when he thought I was sleeping…but I totally heard it 😉

“I found a love, to carry more than just my secrets…to carry love, to carry children of our own.”

We reconnected and grew stronger with every passing day.  We finished college together, started careers, moved in together, and are now engaged, ready to start our lives together. We are constantly growing together and I wouldn’t want to live this life with anyone else.


“We are still kids but we’re so in love, fighting against all odds. I know we’ll be alright this time.”

Today, at only 25, we stand stronger than we have ever been. Every day he surprises me…surprises me with how funny he is, how easily he can make me laugh, how caring he is, how he won’t stop at anything to make sure he’s doing everything to support me, how incredibly loving he is, but most importantly, how amazingly, unbelievably, fairy-tale perfect he is for me.

He is my rock when I am weak, my breath of tranquility in times of panic, my encouragement when I am doubtful, my comfort when I am distressed, and my home when I am lost. I have no doubt in my mind that we are soulmates and I cannot wait to grow old with this man.

“I have faith in what I see, now I know I have met an angel in person”

He has truly shown me what true love is. He never lets me go without, he never lets me forget that he cares, he always offers to make dinner when I’m sick (even though most of the time I kindly reject and make it myself to save us both), he always lets me cuddle, even though he claims to hate it.

As I sit here listening to this song while writing my first draft in my adorable wedding journal, I can’t help but smile. I think of that picture of you leaving the BRITS with your girlfriend. You were barefoot because her heels broke, so you gave her your sneakers. THAT is the kind of man my future husband is (although he might grumble at me for wearing heels in the first place…but he would never let me go without). One time, he even fell asleep with his hand over my eyes because I was afraid of the lightning from the storm. He must have been uncomfortable, but he still did it.

I’ve had this written for a few months, now, but with the year of our wedding here, it is creeping up quick so I figured I’d honor the New Year by making the post! It is with this that I end and again, say thank you for your incredible work, this amazing song, and your love for your fans.

I mean, if you want, we would be totally honored if you could join us for our special day to make it even more Perfect. I know it’s the long shot of all long shots, and you may not even see this on social media – but I am definitely going to try!

New Year, New Mindset

Happy New Year, everyone!

While we are all busy celebrating and wondering what this year holds for us, I know we’re also all thinking a lot about our resolutions and what they mean for us. They probably have a lot to do with our weight, our eating and gym habits, perhaps our spending or making sure we finally clean out our closet like we said we were going to 3 years ago. Maybe it’s to quit smoking or drinking coffee or alcohol on certain days of the week.

While these are all very noble and effective resolutions, I think we all forget about a huge aspect of our health and well being sometimes – our brain. I talk about our mind and our mental well being so often because I really do strongly believe it can be even more important than your physical health at times. Our happiness is a state of mind that stems from within, it does not come from a person or an activity or money, it comes from a feeling within us – whether that feeling be confidence, strength, hope, faith, freedom, or just plain ol’ happiness – it is up to us to find it.

This year, let’s add some different resolutions into the mix. Let’s also focus on:

  • Overcoming a fear
  • Giving off more positive energy to not only other people, but yourself
  • Gaining more mental stability with your depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, or any other mental illness you may be struggling with
  • Take the leap and finally find a therapist you love
  • Focus on self care – get your nails done more, go get more massages, splurge on your hair salon or just buy the dang coffee!
  • Focus on learning when to give trust and when to keep it
  • Learn what friendship means and which ones are toxic
  • Find the silver lining in your little failures
  • Find a guided or a blank journal and take it with you everywhere
  • Pick up a new hobby that will help you relax when you’re stressed out
  • Take that social media cleanse for a few weeks to reconnect with yourself
  • Learn how to be HAPPY

Happiness is the ultimate resolution and everyone could use a little bit more. Find what makes you unhappy and learn to let it go. It’s time for “New Year New Me” to mean “New Year New Mindset”

We can do this.

From ‘Me Too’ to ‘I’m With You’

From the second the #metoo movement began, women, and people, everywhere came together. Whether they were sharing their story or experience, coming forward as a survivor, outing their attacker, or just being supportive.

As a survivor, this sends chills throughout my body…but for two very opposing reasons. One being a very positive and resounding feeling of togetherness. I am so unbelievably grateful that in these horrible times, an entire WORLD can come together to support each other. We go on marches and make life long friends, full songs are created for the sole purpose of letting everyone know we will not stand down until there is change, we start one hashtag movement and the entire world starts coming forward – it is truly incredible. I have seen men on my Facebook, even, post statuses saying they had no idea how widespread this issue was and that they were completely shocked, heartbroken even, that this many people they knew were impacted by such horrible stories.

On the contrary, it makes me so sad that there are so many women out there who have gone through the same, excruciatingly painful experience. It makes me so angry that there are so many horrible people out there that are causing this pain; enough people to make multiple women come forward every few DAYS.

However, I’m here to focus on the positives. Time Magazine named “The Silence Breakers” as the Person of the Year. The cover story included women of all races, professions, countries – everything from a woman working in a strawberry field in Mexico to high profile actresses. They all came together to connect over their stories and speak out for those who couldn’t. The cover includes only the arm of one woman, who represents the women who cannot speak out. THIS is what these movements are doing. They are bringing the entire world together in solidarity to support each other.

The survivors who are all coming forward need our help. We need to be the voice for those who are voiceless – speaking up and calling for change is  a scary thing. No voice goes unheard, no deed goes unnoticed, no help goes without thanks – we are all in this together.

We won’t keep quiet, we won’t let them win, and we most certainly won’t let anyone go this alone.

How Dare You

This week, I have been holding back tears every time I’ve turned on the news. Every time I’ve scrolled through Facebook or Twitter I’ve had to stifle a sob. 

My heart hurts for what is happening, I am so full of sadness for what our world is coming to. My first thought was for my family who was there, my second was for everyone impacted; I can’t imagine what this is like for them. My third thought went to the coward who carried this all out…how dare you. How dare you try and tear our nation apart. How dare you go hunting for not only your fellow Americans, but your own species. 

It is times like these where we need to come together. We need to show these horrible creatures that we are bigger than they think – that we can rise above the ashes and the rubble and come out stronger. 

Today, I challenge you: instead of spewing hatred about the NFL protests, about Donald Trump, about “this is why we need gun laws and you stupid people need to do something about it,” about the conspiracy theories that are already brewing (please just go away)…be a kind human. It doesn’t have to cost a dime. It doesn’t have to cost any extra time, smile at someone as you’re walking down the street. Give someone a compliment in the elevator. Tell your loved ones you love them, give it extra meaning by telling them why. If you have a few extra bucks, pay for someone’s coffee. Give that homeless person you see everyday some breakfast. 

Our nation keeps getting more and more divided and that’s not what America is about. We are supposed to stand together, stand tall, and stand our ground. We are supposed to be a melting pot, each of us bringing something new and meaningful to the table. We are supposed to be the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave, not Land of the Scared and Home of the Violent

It’s time for us to realize this is a problem for humanity. 

Not a problem for our latest politicians to fight over, not a new debate topic to put one candidate above the other, not a topic for the new potential Miss America to answer. This is a problem for US. It’s time to open our eyes and start problem solving 

It is with this that I leave you and ask you to just be a decent human. Be kind, be caring, be helpful. Pay it forward when you can, and quite honestly, just don’t be a piece of shit. We have to stick together and stand our ground – united we stand, divided we fall – don’t let them make us fall. 

God bless, and stay safe. 

We Matter: A Pep Talk for my Best Friends

The other day, I saw a video where 2 best friends sat down and said to each other the thoughts they have about themselves. Each of them were so visibly hurt and uncomfortable by the fact that they had to say these horrible things out loud to their best friends. They were so hurtful – attacking their weight, looks, personality, every piece of their being – and they were so sad for having to say those things to someone they loved so much.

At the end of the video, it makes a great point “Why do we say things to ourselves that we wouldn’t ever say to (or think about) our best friends? Be a best friend to yourself.

Our best friends are our rocks. They are our voice of reason when we are down and that pep talk when we are doubtful. They are our sisters and brothers by choice. They are our true soulmates.

My best friends, are my life. They mean the world to me, whenever someone hurts them, I am the first one to jump to their side and start their support circle. Whether that means running to the liquor store to buy bottles of wine while simultaneously ordering pizzas, putting together a care package box, making plans to vandalize the perpetrators house/car/belongings (though this never actually happens, I swear! I just talk a big game), offering to go grab their stuff from the ex’s house, whatever I can possibly think of to make it even a teeny bit easier.

But, do you know what the most difficult, heart breaking, thing is? The one thing I feel like I can’t fix or can’t help or can’t dig them out of? It’s their hurtful words to themselves. I can’t go offer to hurt the person who is hurting them, I can’t offer to wine them up and console them and tell them the person who is hurting them doesn’t matter and has no idea what they’re talking about, I can’t convince them that those thoughts deep in their mind aren’t true, because those very thoughts and words have been eating away at them for ages.

With that being said, it is with this, that I give all of you, my best friends, the pep talkiest of all pep talks. Keep it with you, whether in your mind or in your pocket. Here is my attempt to knock those demons of yours right on their ass, once and for all:

  • You ARE more than enough. One of the most heartbreaking things that I hear my friends say is that they’re not good enough or that they’re missing something. Homegirl, the only thing you’re missing is the confidence to go with your amazing self. You mean the world to me, and to so many other people. Don’t let one guy, one friend, one bad customer ruin your day and knock you down.
  • You are so beautiful. I truly mean that. I have the most beautiful friends, inside and out. You all are so caring for everyone you know. You all are so unbelievably kind. You radiate beauty wherever you go.
  • You are so strong. You have all been through all sorts of hell. Lost loved ones, horrible break ups, stressful job changes, grueling schedules, family problems, and dramatic life changes. But, y’know what? You’ve ALL made it through. You’re all here standing strong and tall, you’re all here kicking ass every day, you’re all here and still going.
  • You are so hardworking. Think of all of the hard work you have completed. Whether it be school, a job you’ve excelled at, a new job you’re learning, fitness goals you’ve accomplished, personal goals you’re working towards – you did it. You’ve come so far, and you’ll keep going.
  • You’ve learned so much. All of those experiences that hurt and that felt like they were killing you taught you so much. You came out of them so much wiser and so much stronger. Think of where you were a year ago, and think of where you are now. I guarantee you you have learned so much more about yourself, gained so many friends and memories, learned the true meaning of so many things you thought you knew. You are a wizard!
  • You are only human. You will make mistakes, probably even the same one a handful of times. If you beat yourself up for every little mistake, you’ll never get off the ground. Learn from them and move on. If you make the same one again, learn a new lesson and keep going. You are just a regular human in life and mistakes happen. I promise, it won’t last forever.
  • Most importantly, you will be okay. This will all blow over, you will get past that hump, the clouds will clear and the sadness will go away, that mistake does have a silver lining, you’ll see the jealously was pointless, you will see the beauty and the positivity, and

Here’s to all of us.
Our imperfections that make us perfect
Our squad that keeps us strong
Our will to keep going
Our strength that lifts us up
Our beauty that turns heads and changes lives
We matter.

God bless, and stay safe.

Why I Won’t Spend Any More Time on Toxic People

Every year that I look back, I realize how much I’ve grown and how amazing it has been. The friends I’ve made, the confidence I’ve gained, the lessons I’ve learned, the life events that have happened (helllloo engagement!), and everything I’ve been able to experience have all just been so incredibly mind boggling.

However, there have also been some people (and things) I’ve had to cut out, and that’s okay. Sometimes, we want so badly for someone to be good so we try and try to make it work, when in reality we’re just holding onto the bumper of a moving car and we have to realize we’ve gotta let it go (thank you Lorelai Gilmore for that wonderful analogy).

Sometimes relationships – whether they’re romantic or just friendships – can be really abusive if you keep holding on. It isn’t always  getting hit, sometimes it can be as simple as:

  • Getting unnecessary and untrue rumors spread about you
  • Getting your secrets spilled
  • Constant negative energy (you know, those people who are constantly complaining about something or always getting into trouble)
  • Bad influences (someone you feel like you’ve never hung-out with without drinking or doing something unhealthy)
  • They never let you talk, but always expect you to listen to them
  • Drama never seems to leave them alone (but they hate drama, right?)
  • Their pants are often on fire (because of the lies)
  • Other peoples’ names never leave their mouth

Ain’t nobody got time for all that.

I don’t know about you, but I want to be surrounded by positive, good people. I want to be surrounded by people who encourage me to do and be better. I want to be surrounded by people who love other people, who encourage other people and take the time to help other people, not who spend the time to tear other people down.

Misery really does love it’s company, and I promise you, these people will do everything in their power to get their company. Don’t let them have it. Keep your chin up and keep moving forward. Positive vibes and good deeds go much further than negative ones.

We are all too strong, too fabulous, and too important to deal with negativity, toxic relationships, and unnecessary drama.

Wellness Wednesday – It’ll Be Okay


Life is really hard sometimes. We get chewed up and spit out. Then right when we think we’ve got ourselves cleaned up  and put pack together, we get stomped all over and thrown in front of a bus; left there to clean up the mess and bandage ourselves up once again.

On my return to blogging (it’s been a really long time and it’s sad but it’s fine) what is a better comeback than my beloved wellness Wednesday!?

This week, I’m here to remind you that it will all be okay. 

We’ve all been through way more than we thought we could ever handle, and look at us now. We always come back stronger than ever, right on top where we belong.

Here’s what we can do to remind ourselves that it’s going to get better and to help us get there:

  1. Remind yourself that you’ve been here before, and then remember everything you learned from it. We all go through hard times, and during those times we are convinced nothing is worse than this moment and it’s never going to get better. But then a few weeks go by and we start to smile more, a couple months go by and we realize we don’t get hurt as easily, we learn new things about ourselves. So many positive things come from negative experiences, we just have to be willing to notice them.
  2. Actually write out those pros (yes this is a pro con list without the cons, we don’t need that negativity in our lives). It sounds cheesy, but seeing all of those positives on paper helps. Keep the list and add to it, every time you notice a new positive, add it to the list. One day you’ll look at that list and notice it’s a full page of positive outcomes and BAM, it won’t seem so bad anymore.
  3. Be self aware. It’s hard to admit when we need help sometimes. People ask us how we are doing and the answer is always either good, fine, or okay. If you feel yourself breaking, do something about it. Talking to your friends or a therapist is a good way to help yourself figure out if you’re really okay, and remind yourself that you will be one day. And, if it’s hard for you to talk to someone…
  4. Journal your thoughts. I’ve said it 10,000 times before and I’ll say it a million more. It works. Get a blank journal and just write away, get a guided journal to focus on a specific thing, just get to writing!

Let’s actually ask people how they are instead of mindlessly walking through the motions of small talk.  We’re all human, we’re all just trying to get through life, so let’s help each other out.

It will be okay. 

God Bless, and Stay Safe

Sexually Based Offenses…

“In The Criminal Justice System,
Sexually Based Offenses Are Considered
Especially Heinous

Although, maybe they’re not especially heinous
if you’ve got one of the three s’s up your sleeve:
Stanford, Student, or Swimmer

Or perhaps, if you’re a grabby billionaire
with a political agenda,
you can find a way around it.

And maybe, just maybe, if you’re a decorated
boxer with an…interesting…face tattoo
you can be convicted and still go on like nothing happened.

Likewise, if you’re a TV/movie star accused of
sexual and physical abuse, threats, and forced abortions
you can continue “winning” making $1.8 million an episode.

Even after all this, people still wonder why survivors hesitate to come forward.

God Bless, and Stay Safe out there, everyone ❤

Maybe They Don’t Hit You But…

Here is my take on the “Maybe he doesn’t hit you” hashtag that has been going around. Although, I do understand that this is NOT always a HE pronoun…so I changed it to THEY.

We have all seen it…whether you have been on the receiving end, or whether you have a loved one who has told you about it…that relationship that just doesn’t quite seem right.

  • It could be the “get your ass home” texts
  • It could be the punch holes in your walls
  • It could be the extent of your fights
  • It could be how suspicious they get when all you do is go to the grocery store
  • It could be how they tell you that you are nothing without them
  • It could be how they apologize every time and say it’ll never happen again
  • It could be how it was “a rough day”
  • It could be how sometimes you forget you’re even in a relationship
  • It could be how it always “was just a joke”

Often times, emotional abuse is even worse than physical abuse.

Bruises and bones heal,
But the mind is far more complex –
A  bruise there can have impacts
that last a lifetime.

You are worth so much more than you let yourself believe. You are worth the world on a silver platter. You deserve the:

  • “I cannot wait to see you!”
  • “I am so thankful for you”
  • “I appreciate you so much”
  • “Have a great time!”
  • The tightness of their hugs
  • The intimacy of their touch – even if its just their hand on your shoulder – you feel their love and their warmth.
  • “You complete me”
  • Cute notes left all around the house
  • Laughing fits so long your abs are on fire
  • “You make my worst days into my best days”
  • The cheesiest of relationships

You deserve the
Puppy Love
Movie Plot
Head Over Heels

I promise you that it is out there, and I promise you that it is possible.

You have to be willing to believe it. You have to be willing to realize that you are the only one that can make yourself happy. You have to be willing to walk away for your sanity and your well being. Because, maybe they don’t hit you, but they might constantly make you feel like you are doing something wrong.

It is much easier said than done – we like being comfortable, we like sticking to what we know, and we like having that person there (even if we know we aren’t even really all that happy). As silly as it sounds, it’s hard putting yourself first and taking care of you. I came across this Ted article the other day and fell in love. I instantly bookmarked it so I can go back and remind myself to take care of my emotional mental health.

There comes a time where you have to put self love first – your happiness, your sanity, YOUR life – that’s what matters. Stop coming up with excuses as to why the cons outweigh the pros, it is time for you to be happy.

We were all put here to be happy…so make it happen.
It’s your time.