Thursday, March 14, 2019

Charmed by Unlocked

In a world of fast fashion, it can sometimes be hard to find a good cause to get behind where you feel like you're making an impact.

There are ways to save the ocean, the rainforest, various endangered species, and while those are all worthwhile causes, what about something in our own backyards? We could be donating the extra dollars and cents we have to something going on in our communities. Make a direct impact and know exactly where our money is going.

Enter, Alexis Cook, the Co-Founder of Unlocked Nashville. After a diagnosis of Lyme Disease in the summer of 2016, she found herself taking a leave of absence from Vanderbilt and wandering the streets of her hometown, Nashville. There, she started befriending people who were experiencing homelessness. Their stories made Alexis want to do something. One night, as Alexis and her friend, Corbin, brainstormed ways to help the individuals that Alexis had met, they landed on handmade jewelry. Alexis shared that it was a manifestation of their belief that everyone can add beauty to the world.

Through friendships, a leave of absence, old friends, and a grandfather figure Unlocked Nashville was born.

Unlocked Nashville creates an atmosphere for people transitioning out of homelessness to be creative, earn wages, and be a part of something bigger than themselves. Every piece of jewelry on their website is handmade and packaged by their Makers. Each piece also comes with a bio of the person who crafted the piece.

Alexis and Corbin have provided over 400 labor hours to those trying to achieve self-sufficiency. The collaborations and relationships they've helped their Makers form over the years is truly remarkable and humbling.

The past Christmas, my boyfriend Joe surprised me with a Skyler necklace from Unlocked, you have definitely seen me in it. When Joe told me about the mission of the jewelry, it was hard to not feel moved. Creating affordable pieces to help people out of homelessness. It was a no-brainer to support.

Their earringsnecklaces, and bracelets are all delicate and functional. The pieces are great to layer, and go with everything! I own the Skyler necklace and the Celeste, I really can't pick which one is my favorite!

I am so humbled to even be able to share their message with you because even though I don't live in Nashville, knowing that there are still people in the world who care enough to do something inspires me. The determination and positivity of the Unlocked Nashville team is present in everything they do. Even their Instagram posts brighten my day.

I am also excited to share with you that as a member of their Ambassador Program, I have a discount code for you to try Unlocked Nashville out for yourself! I know it'll be hard to pick your favorite style from their website, but when you use my discount code 'MIMOSASANDLIPSTICK20' you will receive 20% off your first order!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

My Lenten Promises

As the streets of New Orleans grow quiet, and Ash Wednesday sinks in and the promise of Lent grows, it's always a time of reflection for me. In the past, I have been guilty of setting the bar too high for myself and not following through. It isn't fun to admit but it's true!

Over time, as I have grown and evolved, I have realized that big changes can be made up of a bunch of small decisions and actions. Whether that be a weight loss goal, graduating from college, commuting to work, reading a book, fulfilling your Lenten promises, all of these things and more can be broken down into many tiny steps and choices that helped you succeed.

For example with graduating from college, overall you achieved your goal, but there were so many tiny movements that helped you pass. Studying for tests, acing group projects, befriending classmates, and the list goes on and on. The little gestures and practices you did day to day got you to your graduation date.

A few years ago, I decided to shift that form of thinking to my goals and promises for Lent as well. I have integrated my longterm goals with my intentions for Lent. The past few years I limit or give something up as well as focus on my future self by incorporating long term goals.

Something you could give up might not even come to mind right away but I know my aunt gives up chocolate every year because she loves it. My friend Lauren usually gives up Instagram every year. Both of these are great examples of something that's a pretty big sacrifice for them! These things may seem big or small to you, but I know to them that how they feel their best way to honor the season. I personally, love chicken fingers, like I have a problem. And I know that if I give them up for Lent, that will be a sacrifice but also help my future self in conjunction with the goals I am setting for this Lenten season.

This year, I'm getting back into the swing of Weight Watchers. If you've been following my blogging journey this last year, I started it up in June and saw great results! But I fell off the bandwagon around Thanksgiving and haven't really been as committed since.

Since losing my job in January, I have been feeling kind of lost and out of a routine. This in turn has made my diet and exercise suffer. Which makes me feel down and doesn't help in the self-confidence department. The cycle spirals from there.

I am going to focus on utilizing Weight Watchers, fitness and more healthy sleep patterns to help my overall well-being. WW will limit what I intake and I have integrated my long term goals. I am also going to continue on focus in the job market and hoping for the best in regards to securing a job. While also giving up chicken fingers. Which might seem juvenile, but that's a sacrifice for me!

Whatever you do this year, do to better yourself. Everyone has different goals, dreams, and cravings. Whether you love chocolate or you spend too much time on your phone, practice with intent this season. Make a goal that will develop you as a person these next forty days and beyond.
© Mimosas and Lipstick. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.