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Living Single: What Every Single Girl Hears

I am wholeheartedly a Friends fan and I watch reruns anytime I can!  I love the show, have been an enthusiast since the very beginning and cried like a baby on the series finale!  I felt like I was losing my friends!  Of course, everyone has their favorite character on the show and mine is Rachel Green.  I love everything about her; her look, her style, just everything! But it was Monica who that had so many endearing qualities that were only magnified by her OCD tendencies.  It’s what made her a great friend.  She found joy in cleaning not only her apartment, but others as well!  Something that I’ll never be able to identify with.  In one particular episode we were able to get a glimpse into what sparked that quirkiness by seeing some of her inner struggles she faced with her parents.  I forget exactly the circumstances, but apparently Monica made some kind of mistake that provoked her parents to ask, “Did you pull a Monica?” which really meant, “Did you mess up or do something really stupid?” That really irritated Monica, as it would anyone who had been forced to endure the same question since childhood.  It definitely didn’t offer any encouragement to say the least!

But as in all thirty-minute sitcoms, all was resolved quickly when Phoebe was able to change Monica’s perspective by showing her how “pulling a Monica” could be positive phrase instead of negative one.  Phoebe told her one day when people won a Nobel Peace Prize people would say they “pulled a Monica” because what they did was so good. Phoebe was able to take a phrase that was meant to be negative and turn it into one that became encouraging and sought after!

Living Single

I think that’s how a lot of single women feel when they hear the phrase “living single.” It has become a negative phrase in certain circles that no one wants to any association with. Well, I beg to differ and dare to show you how living single is a lifestyle that every single woman should feel proud of and embrace. Being single offers us the opportunity to unselfishly be selfish by focusing on our dreams and goals without interruption.  “Living single” means that we are brave, confident women who dare to take life by its reigns courageously embracing all that it has to offer.  Single life is a life that should be lived in the limelight, shining brightly as our successes and failures lead those around us to become the women we were created to be.  As single women, we are the envy of other women when we’re able to take a little longer shopping at the mall, have a girl’s night out without permission, or simply sit in our jammies all day sipping coffee and reading a book while the dishes sit in the sink.  “Living single” has the perks that “Living double” does not.

So now when we hear that someone is “living single,” we’ll all know that person has the opportunity to pursue their dreams with passion and gusto without interruption.  The world will know without a doubt that you, as a single woman, have a life that is yours completely and is only concerned about the affairs of her Father.  What an amazing privilege that is to have!  So single ladies, “pull a Monica” and embrace the phrase "living single" as one that has worth, destiny, envy and privilege. “Live single” with your head held high!

I Corinthians 7:32
I want you to live as free of complications as possible. When you’re unmarried, you’re free to concentrate on simply pleasing the Master.

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Walking Out Your Purpose Before You Say “I Do”
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Now, While You Are Single is a practical guide to help women discover and embrace their true identity in Christ through a journey of healing, ultimately revealing God's purpose and plan for their life while they are single.

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When I Was Young

  When I was a little girl my Dad would pick me up from ballet and take me to Baskin Robbins every week.  He sat in a big swivel chair and I sat right next to him in a kid size chair eating my daiquiri ice sorbet with a tasting spoon.  It was sour, not alcoholic and boy was it tasty.  I remember him brushing my hair, putting it up into pigtails and braiding them.  My hair, always adorned with the hand painted hair ribbons he made for me.  My favorite memory is singing show tunes with him in the kitchen, me singing the part of Annie and my Dad singing the lines of Daddy Warbucks.  “I don’t need anything but you,” we would sing together.

I can’t say that my Father is a man of many words.  Perhaps it comes from growing up with 3 sisters, or perhaps it’s 35 years of living with my Mom and 2 daughters.  That being said, when he does share nuggets or stories I listen.

A stubborn fool despises his father's discipline, but whoever appreciates a warning shows good sense.  Proverbs 15:5  (GOD'S WORD® Translation)

Despite the relationship you have with your father it’s important to understand that his life experiences are things you can learn from.  Sometimes you learn what you should be doing and sometimes you learn to walk in the opposite direction.

Each June we have the opportunity to celebrate and honor our fathers.  Take the time to truly honor both your earthly and heavenly fathers.  This is one seed you want to plant.  I believe I’m reaping my harvest now, I see it every week when my husband takes our daughter out on a daddy /daughter date to Starbucks and Toys R Us.

One of the greatest things my father said to me, while broken hearted in my early twenties, was, “Honey, if he doesn’t like you then he must be gay.”  You see, not all nuggets of wisdom have to be so serious!  I’m tucking that one away for my own daughter… when she’s 25!

Stoplight Prayer:  Father in heaven thank you for my Father & Husband.  Help me to find ways to continue to honor them even when they are difficult and make me want to scream.  Please continue to guide & protect them and they continue to do the same for us.

What's the Hottest Diet and Does it Work?

In a recent episode of 20/20, Losing the Big Fat Trap, several fad diets were highlighted including the most recent and ludicrous of all:  The Tube in Your Nose Diet. The show started by examining several celebrity diets that we all have read about or seen. What was the most interesting to me were the big bucks these celebs were being paid to lose weight as a spokesperson for a particular diet program.  What a motivation!  I think we could all stick to a diet long-term if were being paid big bucks. 

The truth is all of these fad diets work “temporarily,” but most of them can’t be done long term.  Aren’t we, as women, tired of the back and forth dieting? I don’t know about you, but I am too busy to follow a restricted food plan and keep up with all of the diet trends.

For just a minute, can you stop wondering if the latest diet will work for you?  Can you throw out the hope that “this diet” is the answer for your quick weight loss?  Let’s focus on what really matters with our body and eating. 

 Control and Confidence

In working with many women to create a fitness and food design for their lifestyle, I have learned that most women are tired of letting their weight and food control their mind.  Many women feel it keeps them from focusing on what really matters in life.  They have missed out on opportunities with friends and family because of the lack of confidence in their body. They do not want to be imprisoned to a “diet.” What they want is to have control and confidence in what they are eating.

 Peace and Contentment

Can we really be at peace struggling to keep up with celebrity bodies or the latest diet?  When asked if a diet works, my response is, “Can you do it for the rest of your life?”  “If not, it will not work?” True joy comes when we are at peace with food and content with our body, a body that is a living example of health, not perfection.

 As a busy woman do you have time to try and live by these restricted diets?  To lose and maintain your weight, a Clear Design for your lifestyle is what is needed to stop the yoyo dieting.

 If you are ready to gain control and finally be at peace by knowing how to really eat healthy, including the foods you love, I would love to help you.  Contact me for a consultation at crystal@yourfitnessdesigner.com and simply add consultation to the email subject line.

 

You're a Masterpiece

"For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago," Ephesians 2:10 NLT. Michelangelo's frescoes in the Sistine Chapel, Vincent Van Gogh's "Stary Night", and the "Mona Lisa" by Leonardo Devinci, are just a few of some of the greatest masterpieces in the world.

These artists had a vision and worked tirelessly to create their works of art for something bigger...many not knowing how grand or what an impact their creations would make. Rarely do we think of ourselves as beautiful, captivating or worthy, but we are.

In fact, WE are God's masterpieces. Unlike the aforementioned artists, God DID have a plan for His work of art. He knew exactly what you would grow to become and the thousands of lives you would impact. Instead of being confined to a museum, God made you to roam the Earth and show off the masterpiece that is YOU.

Merriam-Websters Dictionary defines the word masterpiece as: "a work done with extraordinary skill; especially : a supreme intellectual or artistic achievement."

Do you see that? You. God's precious work, was done with extraordinary skill, supreme intellect and artistic achievement....Woo! Who needs another's compliment when you've got the word of God flooding you with them?

Lady, you are His "pièce de résistance"!

Father God,

Your works are far too marvelous for us to understand. However, show me how to see myself through YOUR eyes. Unveil to me, the masterpiece that I am. Give me the courgae to be bold, and yet humbly exhibit the beauty and grace You made me with. What a work of art You've made in me! For that, I'm eternally grateful.

Genesis 1:26

Psalm 139: 13-16

 

Golden Globe Hits and Misses

  Typically, I don't count down to award shows. However, I do love the fashion that these events bring. This year it seems that stylists have outdone themselves. Perhaps Rachel Zoe has proven that if you're really good at your job, you too can have a reality show, and thus pushed stylists everywhere to work harder. The dresses this year were just amazing! Though where there are countless hits there are also some sad misses. I'll try to keep it brief, but let's start this magical fashion journey with a few of my favorites.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The ladies above truly came dressed to impress. While the list of impeccably dressed women is incessantly revolving in my memory bank, Angelina Jolie, Emma Stone, Jessica Alba, Paula Patton, etc., the ladies I chose were just a cut above the rest.

Now on to a few, er, shall we say, confused choices. There were more than a few misses, but the stylists responsible for the faux pas' below should maybe watch a little more Rachel Zoe Project. Or perhaps celebs should learn when to say no, like the next time they have a red carpet event and their stylist chooses something resembling any of the following...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now I'm no Joan Rivers, Kelly Osborne, or any other claimed fashion authority. These are just humble opinions and observations from a girl who obviously watches a little too much Bravo (and perhaps just a dash of E). Feel free to chime in with your best and worst dressed opinons!

 

 

Spring Fashion 2011

Aaahhhh!  The smell and feel of spring fashion, it's irresistible!  Just the thought of a great, summer dresses with the perfect shades or dipping my feet in the cool water of a pool or lake gets my heart thumping so hard I can hardly catch my breath.  Although I love the fall and am always ready for it by end of summer,  just the same when March 1st roles around I find myself drawn to the light linens and whites that make my perfect summer tan look and feel golden.

So what can I look forward to this Spring/Summer?  This is always the first thought after my heart beat finds it's way back to normal.  After searching the pages and stores for all the hot spring trends, I'v narrowed it down to some of my favorite finds.

So let's get started....first things first.....color!

This Spring's hottest colors are in

Cinnamon/Rust Citrus Colors White

Replace winter red with hot shades of cinnamon or rust.  Deck yourself in the spicy flavor anywhere from lips, dress or shoes, just not all at the same time.  Or, if your a little more bold, citrus colors scream summer fun.  Of course, Summer wouldn't be complete without the staple, fresh and crisp white.

For all color trends, be aware of your skin color and wear the best colors for you adjusting accordingly.  Some might be great in white, others in off -white.

Shape

Tunics are all the rage and a great new shape for summer.  Tunics show off those tan legs and can be worn as a dressy date night dress or a throw on and run comfy look to run errands or grab light salad with a girlfriend.

Era to take a cue from, the 70's

The 70's always seem to resurface, but this time around it's a little bit more romantic than hippie.  Take a cue from Vanessa Hudgens who channelled 70's fashion icon Bianca Jaggar but tweaked the look a bit by keeping the lines a little bit more simple.  Beautiful!

Maxi Dress

Still taking a cue from the 70's, the maxi dress has also taken on a more feminine look.  From long, flowy patterns to shear skirts the maxi dress also can go from casual to ba-bam!

Materials

This spring, shear and lace are finding their ways into dresses, shoes and accessories.  A little can go a long way and show off your feminine side all the while.  Make sure to at least invest in one staple lace piece that is versatile.

Wide leg, high waist Pants

We can't spring back into the 70's without bringing with us the wide leg, high waisted pants.  This is a great look for work and play but be careful to give them a 2011 twist so that you don't look like you rummaged the goodwill free rack.  Pleats or no pleats, these pants are a hit!

Shoes

There are a lot of new styles to choose from, pick your vice!

Low Heal Thick heal Flatforms

Still hot from 2010

Spilling over from 2010 are two of my favorites; Military and the 60's full skirt and they are here to stay for at least another season.  Pair a great military vest or jacket with a great pair of shorts or short skirt.  Here, you can see the perfect white dress has taken on the lace trend along with the full skirt of the 60's.  You can't go wrong!

It's time to indulge ladies!  Choose your favorite, check your budgets and remember to mix in your staples.  Spring is all about fun so....go have fun!

Happy Spring shopping!

Grammy Fashions 2011

The 53rd Grammy Awards did not disappoint this year!  The music, the clothes, the performances..wow!  If you missed any of it I am sure MTV will certainly run it again for you if you look for listings.  But what I am sure you haven't missed is the fashion on the red carpet and stage!  Every show, every website and morning/evening show have all had something to say about the designs and costumes that made the Grammys a real show.  Here are our picks.

Most eye catching

Rihanna captured our attention on both the stage and red carpet.  She transformed from a shocking white frock to a Dior masterpiece on stage for her performance with Eminem.  No one can say Rihanna didn't catch their eye.  She is always beautiful!

Most Transformed

Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Hudson are the two that have transformed the most this year.  Gwyneth emerged as a singer to take notice of and Jennifer created a new, healthier body.   Plus, the fashion choices rocked!  I love the pink earings with the black hot pants!

Best Dressed Non-nominees

Wow!  Nichole Kidman and Selena Gomez smoked the red carpet with their nude tones.  Sophistication with long locks made both women two of our favorites!

Most Unforgettable

Unforgettable, strange, genius, what were they thinking?  Whatever your take on Katy Perry and Lady Gaga, you certainly won't forget them.  Katy donned angel wings on her back while Lady Gaga percolated in a womb the entire night until she emerged for her performance 'Born this Way.'

Best Color

Keri Hilson is definitely one of my favorites!  I love the color, the length, the style and to top it off the hair!  All of it came together so much she deserved a Grammy just for her fashion choice!  Our winner!

Best Male

We can't leave the Grammys without mentioning our favorite best dressed male Bruno Mars.  Taking a cue from the Rat Pack in the 1960's Bruno strutted down the carpet with class.  Then to top the look off, during Bruno's performance our Television screen turned black and white!  Amazing!

Fall Fashion Report, 2010

You can feel it in the air, see it in the trees and as you walk down the aisle in every home, clothing and trinket store. Fall is here and so are the glorious fall fashions!  I have to admit that even though I love the summer and all the fun activities we get to do like swimming, walk in the park with our kids or take a much needed summer vacation, fall is definitely my favorite time of the year.  I love the smell of pumpkin and spice filling the air of my living room when the candles are lit.  The sweet aroma of a cake baking, while snuggling up to the fireplace.  And I love putting on my favorite fall coat, tall boots and scarf as I step out into the brisk air.  The feel of a fall day blowing against my face as I pull my coat tighter sipping my favorite Starbucks is always considered a perfect day in my book! Every September seems to brings changes.  School is in full swing, new agendas usually roll out at work and of course, our favorite fashion magazines publish their own version of “The Book” that holds every secret, trend, accessory, boot, shoe, bag and new coat we need for the season.  But really, who has time to read 400 pages of fall fashions?  I wish I could study every page memorizing each picture so when it was actually my time to shop, I knew exactly what I needed!   Well, no need to worry ladies.  Created Woman is here to rescue you.  We’ll show you all the hot new trends, what’s in or out, which pieces are timeless all that you need to fill all your fall fantasies in less than 400 pages!

This year’s styles are ones that have impacted the world of fashion before.  Almost every trend this year our mothers or grandmothers have worn before.  It's a season of timeless elegance!

Timeless pieces like the ones above once again walked the runway for fall 2010.

Katherine Hepburn wearing black leggings and round toe flats. circa 1950's

Catherine Denevue looking lucious in a leopard print jacket 1965

Marilyn Monroe is a soft, full skirt circa 1950's

Lets FALL into together!

Trends

* Mixing Prints - Be careful that you look like you are deliberately clashing and pulled together so that you don't conjure up images of a "bag lady."

Leggings and Thigh High Socks

MC Hammer Pants

Yes, they are back!

The Minimalist

Wear in neutral colors

Leopard Print
The fun print is a staple that has once again re-surfaced.  From Raquel Welch to Catherine Denevue (see above), a hit of leopard brings out the wild girl in all of us!

Shoes

-Clogs -Ankle Boots -Round Toe Ballet Flats

We first saw clogs in the 70's.  Now, they have a little different twist.  See Yvonne's article on Clogs, Fashion and Function

Ankle Boots - They come in all different looks.  Some are peep toe, others have fur so find what's best for you.

Ballet Flats - This year, try a round toe with leggings or a long, full skirt.

Boots
You can't go wrong with boots this year! So many different styles to choose from.

Bags

Top Handle  - Louis Vuitton

Hobo - Ralph Lauren

Yummy Colors!

The Neutrals

The neutral trend started last spring and continues for the fall.  It's your base for every great outfit this year.

Jewel tones

Jewel tones are hot in everything from shoes to accessories!  It's the pop of color that gets you noticed!

Jewel tones for fun; grey's , whites and black for the office

Timeless

This fall, we travel back to the basic to a time of classic sophistication.  Shop the classics and you'll never go out of style!

There's nothing that screams timeless like Vogues very own Anna Wintour!  Her classic black glasses, fashion and hair cut as seen every season on the front row of every runway show will never go out of style.

Trench & Pencil Skirt

Two of my favorites!  Burberry made the trench coat a classic in the 1850's and if you don't have some version of this classic, make sure you pick one up this year. For a classic, sexy look, the pencil skirt can carry your from work to play.

The Men's Wear Look
Diane Keaton caused an uproar in the 1977 movie "Annie Hall" with her quirky men's apparel style  making women run to the department stores in droves to duplicate the look.    This time around, the look has incorporated some softer textures while keeping it's masculine-femininity.

1960's Full Skirt and Bustier

Thanks to the 3rd time Emmy Winning show "Man Men," Designers can't get enough of the look.  It hit every runway from Louis Vuitoon to Marc Jacobs.  Gwyneth Paltrow best sported the timeless 1960's lady like style on the red carpet this year in Prada.  Even hair trends from the 60's have re-surfaced by adding fullness to the crown.

For more classic tips, see blog on Clothes the fit the Economy and Trend

The Perfect Fall Outfits

So as the crisp breeze begins to blow through the air, make sure you are ready with great an american classic like the trench coat,a  great pair of boots and a leopard accessory .  But beware!  The collections for fall 2010 are ones you want to keep around for the next generation of fashionistas!  They are here to stay once again!

Remember, Friday, September 10th is Fashion Night Out so hit the stores with your best ankle boots and enough cash in your top handle bag to give a boost to the economy and your closet.

Also, don't forget to come back to Created Woman for more great fall fashion tips on make up, material trends and more throughout the month of September.

Happy Fall!

Single Ladies Living Like Gold

While all of my friends grew up watching Nickelodeon, BET, and ESPN my brother and I were left to enjoy reruns of shows like The Wonder Years, The Cosby Show, and one of my all time favorites The Golden Girls. My mom never understood my fascination with “The Girls” she would pause in front of our TV and ask “What do you have in common with four old white women?” HA! Truth is that I didn’t have anything in common with them, but they sure did intrigue me. I mean, who didn’t love Sophia’s spunk, Dorothy’s sarcasm, and Rose’s lack of common sense (we’ve all had at least one “Rose Moment”). I loved all the ladies, but in my humble opinion, Blanche stole the show. Her swag was undeniable! Not only was she beautiful, confident and charming, but she was FABULOUS! She was what I would describe as a “Serial Dater,” on screen she was either coming in from a date or, on her way out to capture the heart of some fine rich man! This may be a stretch, but I believe that if Blanche’s character was saved and lived in biblical times she would’ve have been named Ruth… could totally see her showing up in Boaz’s room!

As a kid, I remember thinking that Blanche was the only one who had a real shot at finding true love, and actually living a “happy” life. Four older SINGLE women living together in a house badly decorated with tropical décor, even as a child I was determined that that life would not be my testimony!

Living Like Gold

At the age of 25, I still have a fear of being old and alone. Most of my friends in their mid 20’s or early 30’s have this same fear! We don’t want to be the “Golden Girls”! So, in an effort to “help” God out, to expedite this magical meeting between us and our chocolate prince charming we often times compromise ourselves or just flat out settle for men who we know are NOT our husbands! We create these timelines in our heads: Dream job at 22, Married at 25, kids at 28, and when our plans don’t pan out we get desperate!

Some of us constantly complain about being alone and make references to our biological clocks to anyone who will listen. Others of us become impatient and like Blanche we decide to date as many men as possible in hopes to eventually find “him.” Then, there are the other single woman who suffer in silence, they constantly obsess about “the one” and are so distracted in getting that they fail to pursue their dreams and passions.

If we were honest, most of us have fallen into one of those three categories at some point during our single season. Can you blame us?! HA! Think about all the fabulous women you know who are beautiful, intelligent, funny, anointed, and ALONE! What’s a fabulous woman with a fabulous career, living in a fabulous house without a fabulous man?

Truth is nobody really knows why there are so many single women out there who are waiting to meet Mr. Right! In the mean time, I have made the choice to enjoy my singleness, trust God, and wait on for Him to bring my man!

In hindsight Blanche and the rest of “The Girls” did live “happy” lives, but their “happy” included being single! The morning I heard that Rue McClanahan died I sang an impromptu gospel version of “Thank You for being a Friend” the entire drive to work. RIP Rue/Blanche my favorite Golden Girl!

Learn more from Tamra & how to live single with purpose at Elevate 10 June 18th & 19th.

Guest Contributor, Tamra Cobbins