Kimonos are so versatile and they can be worn all year around. Check out these fabulous looks styled by myself and two other fabulous bloggers: Walking in Memphis and The Fashion Canvas. Happy Wednesday, friends!


Walking in Memphis | The Fashion Canvas | Saved Classy & Chic


The featured bloggers are Living on Cloud Nine and MummaBStylish
because we loved their Ruffles & Frill looks from last week’s linkup!

Add your link below and make sure to follow the theme for your chance to be featured on our blogs.

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Moving Day-Teaming up with Atlanta Peach Movers!



Three words that most people love or dread, It’s moving day! Being an Army brat, my family is very familiar with making cross country moves. But, I can honestly say, each move is different. Moving is often one of the most exhilarating feelings whenever you’re ready to explore new territories, live in a different home and make new memories. But, moving can also stressful experience if you’re not prepared. So, today I am sharing 5 useful tips to implement in your packing routine that will create a smooth transition.

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Photo by Alturas Homes on

First, make a list of the packing supplies you will need. Most items can be found at your local Walmart, Home Depot, U-Haul or Lowe’s.  It’s essential to use the correct supplies when moving in order to keep your possessions safe throughout the move. I recommend purchasing all of the necessary items several weeks early. You can also purchase products that are friendly to the environment, as well.

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“ Here’s what you’ll need to keep your possessions protected.
  • 15-20 small cardboard boxes
  • 10-15 medium cardboard boxes
  • 10-15 large cardboard boxes
  • Cardboard separators (for packing glasses and dishes)
  • Bubble wrap
  • Packing peanuts
  • Clean newsprint (bedsheets, linens and blankets work well too)
  • Stretch wrap (for bundling awkward items like skis or furniture pieces)
  • Mattress bags
  • Box cutter
  • Packing tape
  • Sharpie markers

These must-have packing supplies will help you have a smooth move.“ HGTV

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Second, do not procrastinate. I know this may be easier said than done, but it’s important to stay on schedule.  Set a deadline for purchasing supplies, cleaning out items in your home, and packing rooms in your home. The sooner you’re able to finish important tasks, the less you have to worry about when the initial move begins.

Third, inventory your items. No matter the length of time you’ve lived somewhere, it’s important to inventory what you have. Go through the items in your home and decide whether you will keep, throw away, sell or donate items that you don’t use or don’t need anymore. Decluttering will help your move because you will not be taking the same unused items to a different place.

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Fourth, enlist help. We all know most tasks take less time if we have a group of people helping. Plan a fun packing party. Purchase food and snacks for your friends and family. “For those that are lucky enough to have a group of friends that help out, make sure you plan ahead with a setup that will make them want to put you straight into the BFF category. Our idea? A junk food bar! Stock up on all the snacks that you know you shouldn’t be eating but love to anyway: chips, chocolate bars, gummy candy, cookies, etc. Put it all out and encourage everyone to help themselves.If you want to get fancy and have some time before the move, try some of these recipes, and whip up your own junk food buffet.”HGTV

Play upbeat music. We all tend to work faster when music is playing. Although the evening is fun, it’s also very resourceful to your moving schedule. Before you start the packing party, as a side note, be sure to mark any items that you don’t need packed and also assign people to pack various rooms of your home. This way, you have multiple rooms covered while you have extra people assisting you.

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And, last but not least, hire your movers. Do your research. Enlist a company that is reputable and has great reviews. If you’re in the Atlanta area, Atlanta Peach Movers is the company for you! Their mission is to make relocating a red carpet experience for every customer. Their daily goal is to anticipate and meet their customers’ needs by employing an impeccably trained staff and utilizing the latest technology and equipment. They believe the best employee is a fully trained employee.


Over the years, alleviating the stress and confusion of relocating has been their focus. At Atlanta Peach Movers, they don’t just move boxes, they move people.

Their Beliefs

  • Your needs are our #1 priority
  • Offering superior customer service
  • Providing the safest, most dependable relocation services

Industry Leadership

Atlanta Peach Movers leads the way in:

  • Experience
    Three decades in the industry
  • Government Relocation
    Specialized training in government and municipal needs
  • Security
    24-hour surveillance at our 110,000-square-foot facility
  • Training
    All our movers are alumni of Peach University™ and must pass background checks and continuous drug screening.




Turn Your Home Into an Oasis-Collaborating with Triton Pools.



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The warmer months are approaching, and many people are going on vacation. But, I also believe your home should be your oasis. Home is definitely where the heart is. I believe everyone needs a place at home in which they can unwind and rejuvenate themselves after a stressful day. The place where you feel most alive can often be your creative space and your place of refuge. Here are 4 tips to transform your home for the spring and summer.

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Transform your bedroom by painting the walls.  It’s no secret that wall color can affect our mood. Often times, bright, airy colors awaken the senses and make people feel alive. The room you spend the most time in should always be a place of comfort. The interior colors of your home should reflect your personality. If you’re someone that loves color, adding a vibrant color to your room will awaken your creativity. If you’re someone that loves soft hues, changing your wall colors to a calming hue will give you an added sense of tranquilty.

“Getting creative with color in your home can be an excellent (and inexpensive) way to refresh your state of mind. The overlying colors in your home should make you feel good. “In the bedroom, depressed individuals looking to boost their mood should decorate the room with at least 20 percent of one of their favorite colors, one that is more vibrant versus using flat colors only,” Yin says. Beyond painting your walls, you can choose bedding, furniture, or decorative pillows and blankets in your favorite shade. You can also try incorporating colors that are soothing, including light blues and greens, suggests Ken Lauher, a New York City feng shui consultant. Paint can replicate the effect of sunlight on your walls. “I actually use a paint from Benjamin Moore that mimics the effect of sunlight,” Gomez says. “It helps soften the walls and give the room a feeling of glowing sunlight.” Everyday Health

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You can give your bedroom a mini makeover by purchasing new bedding, pillows, or curtains. Often times, adding pops of color or patterns can take a space from drab to fab! I change my bedding and pillows every season. I feel like it’s so nice to have a different look in my room when the seasons change. You can find many bedding sets that are affordable and great quality by simply shopping around to find the best deal. Incorporate patterns and bright colors by changing your pillows. You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to make a space your own.

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Invest in candles. Aromatherapy is an easy way to change the overall mood of your space. If you’re a fan of certain scents, you can bring them to life in your home. Many people use candles and essential oils to add a signature scent to their home. There’s nothing better than making your space inviting.

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Last but not least, if your indoor decor is great, why not change your outdoor decor? Adding a pool, or a patio automatically changes your home into a spot that is inviting for visitors.  Think of all the gatherings you can host. Not only will your space be inviting for visitors, but having a relaxing space of your own can improve your overall health. Self-care is important and every day is an opportunity to reduce stress in your life. “These are some ways to practice self-care, and how a pool can help: Take Time Yourself, Away From Others. It’s easy to get into a pattern of serving others and to forget to make time for yourself, especially if you have a demanding job or a family with children. It’s important, and healthy, to have alone time that you can use to recharge and do what makes you happy. A swimming pool offers a serene and peaceful space, just steps from your door, where you can take that time away from your hectic life and plan some alone time.Hard work has its benefits, but without rest, your body and mind won’t function as well. As the weather warms up, taking time in the evenings or weekends to rest by the pool can help you recharge. You may find the added rest enables you to be sharper and perform even better!” Leisure Pool Services. Ultimately, changing your environment will make a huge difference.

Triton Pool Service is the most trusted pool service and repair company in Georgia. Triton Pool Service takes pride in providing high-quality service, in a fast and efficient manner. They have fully stocked trucks for quick and efficient service, factory trained and certified pool service technicians, openings, closings, valet pool cleaning, repairs, and equipment installation, they are experts in leak detection, and they also do deep pool cleanings and maintenance.

Founder of Triton Pool Service, Andy, realized that a good pool service was hard to find. He began researching the pool industry and he trained under a long-standing pool company in Cumming. After taking classes and fine-tuning his skills, Andy joined the Georgia Association of Pool Professionals and started Triton Pool Service. Now, he has the best team to provide the most reliable pool service in North Georgia.
They say: “Triton Pool Service, as a company, will continue to place our clients’ needs above all else. As we grow our client list we will maintain our personal assurance to each swimming pool. We will continue to build Triton Pool Service one valued client at a time; we are grateful for our fast growth through word of mouth referrals, and our commitment to excellence.”
So, if you need any pool services such as pool maintenance, leak detection, pool repairs, deep cleaning, and more, Andy with Triton Pool Service is definitely who you need to call!


Spring Cleaning- Prestamos Poro Oro Spanish Version


La primavera ha llegado, ¡es hora de limpiar la primavera! Primero, hablemos de por qué las limpiezas de primavera son tan geniales. A lo largo de los meses más fríos, es fácil acumular artículos que ocupan espacio en su hogar. Muchas personas eligen la primavera como temporada para limpiar sus armarios, garajes y espacios de almacenamiento. Nuestro enfoque principal en este artículo será ropa y piezas de inversión. Muchos de nosotros amamos la moda. Me encanta la moda, pero hago un punto para limpiar mi armario varias veces al año. Siendo un blogger de moda, tengo maravillosas piezas que me encanta usar, pero también tengo que tener en cuenta que mi armario solo puede contener una cierta cantidad de artículos. Creo que la organización es la clave para eliminar mucho estrés en el entorno de su hogar. Un espacio limpio y ordenado es la clave para tener una mente clara.

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“El desorden puede hacernos sentir estresados, ansiosos y deprimidos. La investigación en los Estados Unidos en 2009 encontró que los niveles de la hormona del estrés cortisol eran más altos en las madres cuyo entorno familiar estaba saturado. Un entorno doméstico con aglomeraciones crónicas puede llevar a una respuesta constante de bajo grado de lucha o huida, que grava los recursos diseñados para la supervivencia. “Esta respuesta puede desencadenar cambios físicos y psicológicos que afectan la forma en que combatimos las infecciones y digerimos los alimentos, además de dejarnos en mayor riesgo de diabetes tipo 2 y enfermedades cardíacas”. Newsweek 2019

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Aquí hay algunos consejos para guiarlo a través de la limpieza de primavera.

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A continuación, ordene su ropa en 3 secciones: Done, venda y deseche las secciones. Hay muchos elementos que puede querer conservar por razones sentimentales. Pero, si ha tenido un artículo que no ha cabido en varios años o está esperando la oportunidad de usarlo, muchas veces esto significa que es hora de deshacerse del artículo.

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¿Qué tal si te gustaría ganar un poco de dinero extra vendiendo tu ropa? Hay varias aplicaciones en línea donde puede establecer su precio para el artículo que está vendiendo y la compañía le cobra una pequeña tarifa después de realizar la compra. También puede organizar la venta de clósets en su sitio de redes sociales favorito o puede programar un día para una venta de garaje. El beneficio de vender directamente en las aplicaciones de reventa es que no tiene que preocuparse por el pago. El sitio web recoge el dinero por adelantado y le pagan después de que el artículo se envía. Los beneficios de tener una venta de armario en las redes sociales o una venta de garaje es que recauda el dinero el mismo día.
dólares en efectivo manos dinero Foto de Pixabay en [/ caption]

¿Qué pasa si tienes artículos de lujo que te gustaría vender? Prestamos Por Oro está disponible para ayudar. Prestamos Por Oro tiene programas específicos que pueden serle de ayuda. Prestamos Por Oro tiene un objetivo específico, proporcionar préstamos de activos asequibles para joyas, oro, diamantes, relojes y otros activos valiosos, a una tasa baja y a un valor razonable. Ofrecen préstamos tan bajos como $ 100 y tan altos como $ 5 millones a Algunas de las mejores tasas de préstamos de interés en la industria. A diferencia de las casas de empeño típicas que prestan a tasas extremadamente altas (y en tiendas públicas para que todo el mundo las vea), Prestamos Por Oro ofrece préstamos a tasas bajas y en oficinas financieras privadas. Puede sentirse mucho más seguro cuando se comunica con una empresa que está comprometida a ayudar a los necesitados. Conéctese con Prestamos Por Oro y su maravilloso personal visitando su sitio web.

Spring Cleaning collaborating with Prestamos Por Oro



Spring has arrived it’s time for spring clean-outs! First, let’s talk about why spring clean outs are so great. All through the cooler months, it’s easy to accumulate items that are taking up space in your home. Many people choose spring as a season to clean out their closets, garages and storage spaces. However, our main focus in this article will be cleaning out clothing and investment pieces. Many of us love fashion. I love fashion, but I make a point to clean out my closet several times a year. Being a fashion blogger, I have wonderful pieces that I love to wear, but I also have to keep in mind that my closet can only hold a certain amount of items. I believe organization is the key to eliminating a lot of stress in your home environment. A clean, decluttered space is the key to having clear mind.

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“Clutter can make us feel stressed, anxious and depressed. Research in the United States in 2009 found that levels of the stress hormone cortisol were higher in mothers whose home environment was cluttered. A chronically cluttered home environment can lead to a constant, low-grade fight-or-flight response, taxing resources designed for survival. This response can trigger physical and psychological changes that affect how we fight infections and digest food, as well as leaving us at greater risk of Type 2 diabetes and heart disease.” Newsweek 2019

Here’s a few tips to guide you through spring cleaning.
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First, get rid of any clothing and luxury pieces you haven’t worn in a while. Yes, clean out your closet! Use tall laundry baskets as a means to sort through your clothing and shoes. If you haven’t worn an item in several months, remove that item from your closet.

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Next, sort your clothes into 3 sections-Donate, Sell and Throw Away. There are many items that you may want to keep for sentimental reasons. But, if you’ve had an item that hasn’t fit in several years or you’re waiting on the opportunity to wear it, often times this means it’s time to part with the item.
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Why is important to donate? Often times, there are many tragedies that happen throughout the year and I think it’s important to give back to those in need. There are several organizations that accept clothing donations if they are gently used and in great shape. There may also be clothing boxes in your town to donate bags of clothing. These boxes are usually checked frequently and distributed accordingly.
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What if you would like to earn a little bit of extra money selling your clothes? There are several apps online where you can set your price for the item you’re selling and the company takes a small fee out after the purchase is made. You could also arrange closet sale on your favorite social media site or you can set a day for a yard sale. The benefits of selling directly on resale apps is you don’t have to worry about payment. The website collects the money up front and you get paid after the item ships. The benefits of having a closet sale on social media or a yard sale is you collect the money the same day.
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What if you have luxury items that you’d like to sell? Prestamos Por Oro is available to help.   Prestamos Por Oro has specific programs that may be of assistance to you. Prestamos Por Oro has one specific goal, to provide affordable asset loans on jewelry, gold, diamonds, watches, and other valuable assets, at a low rate and at fair value.They offer loans as low as $100and as high as $5 Million at some of the best interest loan rates in the industry.Unlike typical pawn shops that lend at extremely high rates (and in public storefronts for the world to see), Prestamos Por Oro provides loans at low rate and in private financial offices. You can feel much more confident when you reach out to a business that’s committed to helping those in need. Connect with Prestamos Por Oro and their wonderful staff by visiting their website.





The box that you need to try at least once and I promise you, you will be impressed! Thank you @fabfitfun for introducing me to some of my all-time favorite products. #FabFitFunAffiliate There’s something nice about having all of the season’s #essentials delivered to your door without having to lift a finger! 🙂 If you don’t already get their boxes, you can sign up using the code SPRINGLOVE at to get $10 off your box! #fabfitfun

Amazon Finds!


So, I’m keeping this short and sweet-I am finding all kinds of new Amazon prime finds every day that I absolutely love! Great quality, cute and so versatile. So, be sure to head on over to the link at the bottom to shop all of my most recent favorites. I am all about saving money and looking good at the same time! All 3 of these looks are perfect for Spring and Summer-dressed up or dressed down each look  is so chic!



Shop My Looks



4 Faith-Driven Student Athlete Character Builders & Busters Collaborating with Coach Gary Waters


March Madness is amongst us and we all could probably name our favorite teams! As you know, I’m a huge Auburn fan so I’m excited to see them advancing to Sweet 16! War Eagle! Auburn believes in hard work, character, dedication and integrity.


When I think about athletics, I know there is a huge amount of discipline and dedication that goes into becoming a great athlete. Some of the best coaches teach character building traits that will impact athletes lives beyond playing sports. I’m teaming up with Coach Gary Waters to bring you a wonderful about character and integrity.

4 Faith-Driven Student Athlete Character Builders & Busters by Coach Gary Waters


At a time when sports, coaching and even athlete parenting have become a never-ending chase for profit, popularity and prominence, it can be difficult, and sometimes seemingly impossible, to cultivate character and integrity in student athletes—whether they be NCAA-level, high school or even middle school age players. 

Just one quick Google search can reveal the extent to which honor and any notable “code of ethics” in student sports is suffering amid a pervasive glut of incidents from coast to coast involving cheating, abuse, and other forms of misconduct. One particularly high-profile example underscoring how insidious the problem is the FBI investigation revealing that head and assistant coaches were using NCAA monetary profits for bribery gain. This resulted in a mass arrest of head coaches, assistant coaches, and staff members. While this traumatic event changed NCAA college basketball practices interminably for the better, in the process the NCAA board suffered extreme embarrassment and strife from the fraudulent exposure while coaches and other staffers suffered irreparable career damage—not to mention the “collateral damage” to players, their families and the university’s, themselves.

Given what seems to be an endless array of scandals, there is a beacon of light in the form of Coach Gary Waters, a former Kent State, Rutgers, and Cleveland State Head Coach. As one of the nation’s preeminent Character Coaches, Waters urges that parents, coaches, team leaders and anyone engaging with student athletes should establish—and wholeheartedly assure adherence to—a defined set of godly principles that have the express intention of bolstering a student athlete’s character, values, and principles both on and off the court. Coach Waters, believes that character is defined by moral excellence and firmness, having remarked that “that the highest standard of character is set forth in Scripture and is exemplified in Jesus Christ. When a person’s godly principles, ethics and integrity are aligned, staying in the guidelines for the law and regulation comes effortlessly, like a second nature.”

Today more than ever, student athlete coaches and programs are instilling the importance of honor, valor and integrity, and parents at home are eager to follow suit. With this in mind, Coach Waters offers these fundamental basics on what a sports-driven student should do—and not to do—as they endeavor to build character:

***Character Builders – DO This:

Work Hard At What Matters…Fearlessly:

Coach Waters believes, and one can nary disagree, that the effort one puts forth directly correlates with the outcome of what one pursues, and that a great number of those “sweat equity” efforts should be proactively focused on endeavors that further life goals—be those related to athletics, career, relationships, family dynamics, spirituality or other areas of self-improvement and personal growth. Modern-day life is filled with a glut of complexities that can make it difficult to “see the forest through the trees” and aptly discern exactly what matters most in achieving various goals, and prioritizing in kind. It can actually be overwhelming—especially when the goals ahead seem insurmountable or entirely unreachable.

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Time is finite and there’s only so much of it to be had each day, so Coach Waters underscores the importance of allocating dedicated and concerted time on the most meaningful and impactful areas needing attention—those that will yield short term results, but will also be mindful of longer-term objectives. As importantly, Waters also advocates “attacking” one’s goals fearlessly so as to counteract self-doubt, uncertainty, hesitation and other detrimental inner dialogue that can present obstacles and swiftly thwart one’s best hopes and intentions. It’s been said that FEAR stands for “Forget Everything And Run” and, according to Eldonna Lewis-Fernandez, author of “Think Like a Negotiator,” fear is “that uncomfortable, disconcerting feeling that causes us to take a back seat in our own life and prevents us from proactively moving forward to reach our goals and aspirations. Instead of facing a personal, business or workplace situation head on and taking control of the proverbial handlebars of life, fear causes us to turn the other way, freeze in our tracks, or poke our head in the sand.”

According to Lewis-Fernandez, fear of failure can be particularly debilitating. “All too often we stop short of attempting something new for fear we might embarrass our self or, worse, fail all together,” she says. “Any given undertaking has the possibility of resulting in failure, which is never a desirable or welcome outcome.  But, when facing something new, a fear of failure can be amplified as anxiety or nerves, and our ‘fight or flight’ instinct kicks in.  These intense feelings can cause us to put our aspirations on the shelf where they can languish in perpetuity.”  She also cites fear of vulnerability as another area of concern.  “While it can be uncomfortable and downright scary to open yourself up and expose your true inner self and your ideas and aspirations to others of importance in your life, doing so can be cathartic – and a true turning point in effecting positive change,” Lewis-Fernandez notes. “Letting down your guard takes courage and strength, and allowing yourself to be vulnerable can help you better relate with people on a more personal level.”

Value And Demonstrate Loyalty:

Loyalty means different things to different people. For Coach Waters, loyalty is about the commitment one makes to a cause, a particular group or specific persons. It involves a feeling of devotion or obligation to someone or something in both good times and bad. Other definitions describe loyalty as involving faithfulness to something or someone to which one is bound by pledge or duty. In all instances, however, loyalty is about integrity—keeping one’s word or upholding expectations of another as demonstrated through one’s actions, optimally in a sustained and habitual manner. Coach Waters believes that ingraining a sense of loyalty in student athletes certainly begins at home, but extends far to other role models—whether they are intentional or incidental. This includes coaches, administrators, teachers and even other players.

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To understand the extent to which one is demonstrating loyalty in their everyday lives, Coach Waters recommends an easy exercise to determine one’s “loyalty score” relating to various endeavors. He suggests doing a self-analysis rating one’s self in relation to a given venture (like loyalty to one’s team or sport at large). On a scale of one to five, ratings can be related to key tenants of loyalty like honesty, trustworthiness, support, generosity, commitment, reliability sincerity, consistency and partiality. Assessing one’s commitment to a specific endeavor with these attributes in mind can be a powerful tool in determining if a better effort needs to be made…and in which areas. Even caregivers, coaches and others can use this tool to rate the student athlete, and then use it as a springboard for discussion that can manifest in a powerful dialogue—a tactical growth moment for all involved.

***Character Busters – DON’T do This:

Demonstrate Undependability

Coach Waters concedes that, amid stressful schedules and demands on a player’s time and resources, remaining dependable and steadfast can be difficult. Worse, he feels there is lessening value being placed on these attributes despite the fact that they can play a critical role in one’s success trajectory. He also feels that all too these traits are being cultivated as it relates to the game itself, but not carried over into other facets of the player’s life and value system overall.  “Success in the classroom and growth in the player’s personal development often isn’t valued, and parents and coaches often aren’t supported in their efforts to help players grow as people…only as players,” he laments. Worse, role models and mentors like coaches themselves often set examples of disloyalty, by foregoing a commitment to their institution in favor of money and acclaim elsewhere.
For a student athlete, they have many ways that they can demonstrate their dependability each day, week and month—both within and outside of their sport. And, Waters suggests proffering rewards for them doing so. Relating to athletics, this can include making a staunch commitment making it to every practice (and on time and fully prepared); being “present” at practice by being fully engaged in the lesson or drill at hand; and being known as someone known for “going the extra mile” to help out other players when needed—whether that’s understanding a play or providing emotional support when things aren’t going well. Outside of sports, dependability can be shown in areas like turning in complete homework on time, every time; being where you say you’ll be at the stated time; handling responsibilities at home like chores in a self-directed manner without need for prompting or reminding; and being willing to “lend a helping hand” or a “supportive ear” when someone is in distress. Doing any of this involves an outward point-of-view and nurturing an altruistic spirit.

Undermine Authority

According to Waters, “Having a reverence for authority, as demonstrated by overtly respectful treatment and regard, is a mission-critical aspect of character building. Respectful behaviors and attitudes should certainly start in the home with parents, but needs to carry over to all others in a student athlete’s life: relatives, coaches, administrators, teammates, referees, friends and even strangers like the elderly. When a fundamental respect for authority doesn’t exist, it becomes a slippery slope that can lead to contentious relationships in every direction, missed opportunities or, in worst case scenarios upon festering longer-term, full expulsion from the team.” This scenario is made far worse when a disrespectful player actually undermines authority at large, such that their actions are making otherslose respect for the authority figure(s) as well, he notes.

This is an insidious situation Waters knows can have a grave effect on a sports program in short order, “corroding the foundational value system needed to have a productive and winning mentality.”

In kind, it’s imperative that student athletes are diverted from this behavior, being redirected to engage in more productive ways. But, what does “undermining authority” look like when not in the form of public back talk, snickering and general rudeness? Rest assured that undermining authority does not always involve obvious discourtesy, but rather can be quite clandestine.  According to Waters, there are some less obvious signs a student athlete may be undermining authority—or anyone for that matter—and need to be course-corrected as part of their character building effort. One red flag he points out is when someone consistently prompts others to defend their opinion, assertion or point-of-view. Those who undermine authority also often dole out “backhanded compliments” that actually serve to reference or highlight a negative aspect of a situation in a counterpoint contrast to the positive. A third thing to watch out for according to Waters is subversive advice packaged as being helpful, like an alternate plan purported to be advantageous for the authority figure (or group at large) when, in fact, more selfish motives and benefits are at hand. Knowing what to look for is key for helping student athletes avoid this kind of surreptitious or even inadvertent self-destructive behavior.

For coaches, parents and other ‘key influencers,’ it’s imperative to not only push physical development of a student athlete but also instill a reverence for character development founded on a stated and shared value and belief system—a critical facet of their personal growth and development and one entirely under their span of control. Student advisors must also lead by example and walk the walk, making being principle and ideology-driven a cyclical endeavor without hypocrisy. Only then can the student, team, family, game, school, program and industry at large be elevated, allowing everyone to reach their full potential.

As John Wooden famously said about coaches, “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”

Morning Routines- featuring Dr. Rob Carter III and Dr. Kirti Salwe Carter


Hi Friends!


You’re either a morning person, a night owl or a mixture of both and I tend to be a mixture of both a morning person and a night owl. But, I can honestly say that I love morning routines. There’s something about starting your morning on track that makes your entire day go smoother. This week, I’ve teamed up with Dr. Rob Carter III and Dr. Kirti Salwe Carter to bring your some tips on how to make your morning routines less stressful. I hope you find all of these tips useful.

4 Tips For Creating Less Chaotic,

More Productive Mornings

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When the alarm rings each morning, do you arise quickly, eager to take on whatever the day brings?

Or do you drowsily reach for the snooze button?

Your answer could be crucial because the mindset you start the day with can play a significant role in whether the rest of your day is filled with successes or setbacks.

“Every time the sun rises, so do new opportunities to grow, develop and improve,” says Dr. Rob Carter III, co-author with his wife, Dr. Kirti Salwe Carter, of The Morning Mind: Use Your Brain to Master Your Day and Supercharge Your Life(

But to make the most of those opportunities, you may need to adjust your morning routine to better prepare your mind and body for what’s to come.

“Your morning routine can be as little as 15 to 20 minutes if you like,” Carter says,  “but the idea is to have time dedicated to you and habits that support you.”

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Carter offers these suggestions for starting the day right:

Plan your day the night before. A peaceful morning can quickly turn chaotic if you don’t have things carefully planned out. “It’s not unusual for people to be heading out the door and discover they can’t find their car keys,” Carter says. A lot of morning stress can be relieved by planning your day the night before, he says, such as deciding what clothes to wear, making sure your phone is charged, and writing the next day’s to-do list.

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Make time for yourself. If you’re married with kids, this can be a challenge. But Carter says everyone needs time for reflection, which is unlikely to happen unless you make it a priority. Set aside time to meditate, pray, do yoga or even do nothing for 10 minutes. “Spending time by yourself,” he says, “allows you to reflect on life’s happenings and can increase productivity and focus, and make you appreciate time with others more.”

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Minimize noise and distractions. Many people start the day by turning on the TV, the radio or other devices. Avoid that urge, Carter says. Instead, devote your energy to getting yourself mentally focused for the day. “You definitely want to avoid watching the news if at all possible,” he says, “because the often-stressful images you’ll see aren’t conducive to a peaceful morning.”

Create a morning-exercise routine. Exercising gives you a sense of achievement to start the day with, provides you with more energy for the rest of the day, improves your mood, and makes you feel in control of your life. “Research shows that people who exercise in the morning are more consistent with their routine than those who try to fit exercise into their schedule later in the day,” Carter says.

“The most important thing about a morning routine is that you create one that you enjoy so much you will stick to it,” Carter says. “If you begin to realize that any aspects are not making you feel good, then get rid of them and replace them with something better.”

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About Dr. Rob Carter III and Dr. Kirti Salwe Carter

Dr. Rob Carter III and Dr. Kirti Salwe Carter are co-authors of The Morning Mind: Use Your Brain to Master Your Day and Supercharge Your Life( Rob Carter is a Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army, an expert in human performance and physiology, and has academic appointments in emergency medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, in public health and health sciences at Los Angeles Pacific University, and in nutrition at the University of Maryland, University College. Kirti Carter was born in Pune, India, and received her medical education in India, where she practiced as an intensive-care physician before moving to Texas to complete postgraduate training in public health. She is a Fellow of the American Institute of Stress (FAIS), has more than 18 years of experience in meditation and breathing techniques, and has been facilitating wellness seminars for the past decade.

Surprising Skin Sins That Age Your Face with Dr. Manish Shah.


Your skin is the biggest organ in your body, so it’s not surprising to find out that we do a lot of things to harm our skin within our daily routines. Well, today I’ve teamed up with a skin expert to bring you some amazing advice for the spring and summer months. Let me know in the comments which one of these habits you have and plan on changing. 



Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that smoking, not wearing sunscreen and going to bed with your makeup on hardly produces the coveted look of Instagram’s “glass skin.”  Aside from these three ‘skin sins’ there are many others that are not so obvious. We turned to Denver Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon Dr. Manish Shah who is a big believer in pre-juvenation and a holistic approach to youth. 

 Inconsistent Dieting

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“Many people think caring for your skin is skin-deep,” quips Dr. Shah. “It is not.“ Inconsistent or inadequate nutrition that has your body mass and weight moving in a yo-yo motion up and down the scale can contribute to ruined elasticity and reduced collagen in the skin. This is part of the reason why specialists will recommend a two-pound maximum weight loss goal per week because your skin needs time to adapt to the loss of mass. Dr. Shah explains that the skin needs to be nourished from the inside as well and many of the trend diets like keto and paleo focus on one group of food and though it can help keep a caloric deficit, it can also create a deficit of the necessary vitamins and minerals you need to keep your skin looking healthy.

Drinking Too Much Coffee

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“Excessive amounts of caffeine can increase the levels of insulin and cortisol in the system,” explains Dr. Shah.  Insulin increases inflammation and cortisol is known as the stress hormone. This combination could mix up your sleeping habits and contribute to continued stress which can lead to sleep deprivation. “Sleep deprivation prevents that regenerative rest our skin and mind need to stay healthy.”

Neglecting the Skin Around Your Eyes

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“The skin around your eyes is the thinnest and has very few oil glands,” says Dr. Shah. Pamper your eyes and stave off signs of aging by choosing a daily eye cream that includes peptides. Dr. Shah explains, “They work to stimulate collagen production and prevent fine lines. Be sure to check the label.” Other notable ingredients that reduce puffiness, lines, wrinkles, and under eye circles are caffeine and nicotinic acid (a form of the B vitamin niacin).

Expecting Instant Results from Beauty Treatments

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Most of us are guilty of trying a face cream or anti-aging treatment once or twice and then giving up on it before it has had a chance to work. A majority of anti-aging treatments take up to a month to begin showing positive effects. Dr. Shah explains, “This is due to the cycle of your skin, which undergoes a period of cellular structure renewal over a span of 30 days. In our instant gratification mode, we often toss a product before giving it time to work.”

Taking Medications With Side-Effects on the Skin

Certain medications like corticosteroids for asthma and arthritis cause the skin to thin and weakens blood vessels. Medicine to treat seizures can cause heightened sensitivity to sun damage in the skin which is a common perpetrator in premature aging. Blood pressure medications that block calcium channels have been studied in relation to their inhibition of collagen production by obstructing the absorption of vitamin C by the cells. Vitamin C is an important part of collagen production.  “If these medications are being prescribed to you by your physician then the benefits outweigh their effect on collagen production. There is no need to stress over this, as long as you take care of your skin in other ways you should be fine,” explains Dr. Shah.

 Consuming Excessive Amounts of Salt

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“By all measures, an excess of salt in your diet is detrimental to your kidneys, your cardiovascular health and, yes, your skin,” says Dr. Shah. Salt absorbs moisture and it can aid in making your skin look dry and less vibrant. Reducing your sodium intake and sticking to a moisturizing routine should help your skin stay healthy and smooth.

 Facial Expressions

Every time you move that beautiful face, your skin wrinkles a little bit. Most of the time your face bounces back and those little wrinkles disappear once new skin cells grow.


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While you may think that soap is your skin’s best friend, this is actually not the case. The reason for this is that your skin has an acid mantle which is a natural protective barrier of the skin. When you wash with soap – which is generally alkaline – it can remove this protective layer of oils and dry out the skin, eventually leading to wrinkles. Dr. Shah says that “While it is not advisable to stop washing entirely, try swapping the soap for a PH-neutral and chemical-free cleanser, and bear in mind that there is such a thing as over-cleansing your skin.”

 Tugging on Your Skin While Applying or Removing Makeup

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To minimize the damage to the skin around your eyes, follow these quick tips from Dr. Shah:

Use your ring finger to pat on products around your eyes, including serums, oils, moisturizers, and concealers. Your ring finger is the least likely to pull or tug at your skin.

Apply eyeliner and eyeshadow by gently closing your eyelids, rather than by pulling them taut. If you’re struggling to apply without pulling, consider investing in products that are made to apply smoothly, like cream or gel formulas.

Have patience when removing makeup from the eye area. Use cotton or another soft product, coated well with your favorite makeup removing solution. Hold the cotton over your closed eye without wiping, allowing the product to break down the makeup. After a minute or so, wipe gently to remove the makeup.

 Picking Your Skin

You’re not a dermatologist or licensed aesthetician. You should not be picking at your pimples, ingrown hairs, or anywhere else on your face. It’s one of the biggest assaults against your skin and can have permanent effects. “The more people press and manipulate blemishes, the more inflammation they create underneath,” explains Dr. Shah. “The result is scars, pockmarks, and discoloration that can become permanent.”

Licking Your Lips Constantly

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There’s a myth out there that claims people can get addicted to lip balm. “These people just have dry skin and miss the feeling of the balm when it’s gone,” says Dr. Shah. Lip licking can become a bad habit. But when you moisten your lips that way, you actually wind up making things worse. The water in your saliva evaporates, leaving lips dry and cracked. “Saliva can contain bacteria and irritants, so you can end up with a rash around the lips as well,” says Dr. Shah. Try a lip balm such as Burt’s Bees 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Balm, Original Beeswax with Vitamin E & Peppermint Oil.