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Traveling is becoming one of my favorite things to do now. The fact I can forget my reality and get away to someplace cool for a couple of days is clutch. I hear a lot of people always complain about the cost of traveling and hold that being reasoning as to why they do not travel. I call that nothing but a bunch of lame excuses. Listen I do not make a crazy living so I’m not spending thousands of dollars on a trip. The most I have spent on a trip so far was Jamaica and that’s because I wanted to live like Beyonce/Diddy while on vacation. (true story lol)

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After coming back from my recent trip from Los Angeles and spending under $500 for only five days, it got me to thinking, I definitely can travel more often. Now realistically because I have a 9 to 5, paid time off is not being handed out like free kripsy kreme donuts. However, with the time I do accumulate, I’m going to see some more world. I want you to also do the same! Below I have listed 4 Ways to Vacation On A Budget, (domestic)….TSJ Style.

          Skip the hotel, get an AirBnB

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We all would love to stay in a luxurious hotel but let’s face it, once their fees are added in, you looking at close to $1000 for a 4-night stay.  No Bueno. I get staying in someone else home is kind of weird but the prices are great. Also when you are on vacation all you do is shower, possibly snack, and sleep in your room. As long as you are in a great neighborhood or at least close to the action spots, it does not matter where you stay. I have found staying in Airbnb’s have saved me anywhere from $500-600 total. Also when traveling in the United States, I usually rent a vehicle. All of the places I have stayed at has either free parking or discounted parking. This is opposed to paying an additional fee for parking at a hotel.

***If you just prefer a hotel, the app Hotel Tonight provides great deals. They allow you to book in the location up to 7 days in advance. The catch is you have to be within that time frame from your trip to see the great deals. I used this app when I traveled to Vegas. It was great for a last minute deal. 

       Two’s a company, Three’s a saving

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I have traveled alone on more than one occasion, but the last four years I have also traveled with my boyfriend or a group of people.  When traveling alone I have spent close to $700 on just the flight, Airbnb, and rental. Not bad huh? Well, this will really get you excited, traveling with two or more people, I have spent close to $500 on the same things. Now, this is just domestic traveling, but it is still a huge saving. I say if you trying to save your money, get you some traveling homies.

***Keep in mind traveling with other people can be a hassle. Everyone will not want to do the same things and stay on an itinerary. Definitely, discuss what are the “must do’s” for everyone so that no arguments happen once you get on the trip.

       Carry-on Luggage is Best

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Getting four to five outfits in one carry-on use to be hard for me. Now I’m a pro! I can get six to eight outfits with two to three pairs of shoes in one carry on. Impressed? Don’t be, I discovered the art of rolling your clothing very late in the game. It not only provided me a lot of room in my suitcase but saved me money on my luggage. Unless you are flying Spirit Airlines, your carry on is FREE. Just think, you really need only two pairs of shoes on vacation. If you are not traveling someplace tropical, three pairs. Now I know people like to shop when they go out of town, but that’s the beauty of traveling with other people. My boyfriend mostly always checks his baggage. So anything I purchase in another state I just put in his bag.

***You can also just have the items shipped to your home as well. I know how it is when you find an item or even a store you don’t have back home. You can not pass up that deal. 

        Sightseeing is Free

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There is nothing better than getting some sightseeing done in a new city. You can people watch, soak in the culture and possibly pick up some souvenirs. My favorite of sightseeing is the street meat. Yes, you can even get a delicious meal on the street for under $10. I have enjoyed walking around New York City and Venice Beach, looking at the street performs. That is pretty much free entertainment, food, and some gifts for under $20. (it is polite to tip the street performers, they work hard people)

***Every city in the US has an area you can just enjoy for FREE. Use google if you are not sure where to go.

Alright, beautiful people, I hope you have enjoyed my tips. Do not let money be the reason you do not travel. Treat yourself to at least one to two trips a year. If I had my way, I would take a trip every month. I technically did that, August, September and October, I was in three different states. Best decision I have made all year. Cheers to living your best life.

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In honor of New York Fashion Week, I decided to share some of my favorite looks from my recent trips. So I had a great idea to travel to DMV then NYC the following weekend. Traveling is very tiring but it was the best decision I made all 2017.  I’m no fashion guru but I love to mix and match my clothing to come up with a new look. Instead of purchasing a new wardrobe for my trips, I put together some cute end of the summer looks.

The jean vest goes great with dresses for me. It provides me with a great shape and hides anything I do not want to show. DC weather was amazing, so I made sure to wear a nice strap dress and paired it with the vest.

The cameo jacket is going to be another staple for me this fall. NYC was a little chilly on Saturday so I bring out the jacket. I paired it with a dress but I also would wear it with some distressed jeans and a plain tee.

Lastly, my dashiki is great to be worn as a dress or shirt. I wore it as a dress this time around since the sun was out. I did put shorts underneath just in case I wanted to drop it low.

 

 

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Dress – Charlotte Russe Jean **** Vest – Fashion Nova ****Feather Chain – Forever 21

 

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Cameo Jacket – Fashion Nova **** Dress – Wet Seal  ***** Gold Necklace – American Eagle Outfitters

 

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Dashiki – L’AVIYE ****Crossbody – Aldo ****Sandals – Nasty Gal

 

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Yes, I’m going to talk about the infamous fuck boy. Everyone has run into one or ten in their lifetime. Whether you dealt directly with one, you know someone who has, or you are one yourself, it has happened. Unfortunately, I have been with more than one. Some may say I can chalk it up as an “L, you live and learn”. I would say yes I have lived and learned a lot from my bad choices in who I decided to give my time. However, there were some benefits in dealing with those fuck boys. I looked at messing around with a fuck boy as a very expensive lesson but valuable.

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Now granted most fuck boys are selfish womanizers. They will do whatever it takes to benefit themselves at the same time constantly lying and breaking hearts. The fuck boy is unapologetic, to say the least, but honestly, ninety percent of the time show you who they are in for the first week of knowing them. Now I know you are thinking, why would anyone decide to mess with a fuck boy if we know all this? I’m glad you asked…..

For Great Sex

Unless you have been hiding up under a rock some place or do not have HBO, you would know Lawrence from Insecure has become a fuck boy. Hey, Tasha called him out on it during episode three of the second season titled ‘Hella Open’. The thing is Tasha was not thinking Lawrence was much of a fuck boy and rather a great fuck when he was blowing that back out. See most fuck boys come with great sex. This is the main reason women keep them around even though the boy is not providing anything else we acquire. The moment he shows his true blue colors, ie. stop calling, we find out about his other life aka the one he lives when he is not with you, or whatever it is, we then want to call him on the bullshit we already knew.

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The Plus One

If you have a decent fuck boy, yeah who knew those existed, you can both use each other. The decent fuck boy has a bit of a conscience so if you need a plus one to an event he would more than likely go with you. Please believe he will be asking to borrow money, use your vehicle or something for compensation for that date he just went on with you. The convenience of having a fuck boy around is a good benefit for women who do not want to take the time to invest in a quality man. Fuck boys are always around when they are getting something out of the deal.

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The Learning Opportunity

Like I admitted in the beginning, I have dealt with more than one fuck boy. The biggest benefit for me was learning how to spot them. After my last fuck boy encounter, I realized what I was doing to attract such fuckery, I was not setting standards for myself. Back then all you had to do was give me a conversation, throw a couple of compliments my way, most importantly sex me good and I was all yours. One of the fuck boys told me the real deal and how boys prey on women. The only choose women who they can pass time with until they get the girl they really want, never a need to take her out the house, and my favorite they go for the one with the lowest self-esteem.

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After hearing all of that, I declared never to waste any more time on a fuck boy. Now do not get me wrong they make for great male friends. It’s very entertaining to see how fuck boys are stronger than ever. Even married men, yup, are out here in these streets. Hey, I guess fuck boys will never be a dying breed….

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Social-Media-GIFs

So I now know I’m not the only one that wakes in the morning and before brushing my teeth I grab my smartphone to get on social media. The starting line up is Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, then Snapchat, in that order. I leave Snapchat for last since the stories on my timeline usually take me anywhere to 10 to 15 minutes to fully watch. PIU, problematic internet use, is what doctors are saying we have. It is classified as an addiction. I completely disagree.

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Last week however one of my followers on Instagram posted the meme above. It is cute or whateva but I love how much social media has evolved over the twenty years I had active accounts. This could be the millennial in me…..Millennials are the 1980s and the latest 2004  in case you were wondering. Seriously though, I love the way we communicate now. Given the fact that I have been working in communications my whole working career, I rather slide into someone DMs instead of calling all the time. I also enjoy posting any new hot restaurants, clubs, parks, or vacations I have been on. This does not mean I do not properly engage with the person or people I am with at that time.

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My social media accounts have not been created just to look at someone else life. They give me exclusives on concerts, new music by my favorite artist, movies that have not been advertised a lot, new television shows, and so much more. There is more good than bad to me on social media. It goes back to what I always say, it is who you follow that may make it not interesting. There are accounts such as Amanda Seales and MissDiddy that I follow for two different reasons. Amanda is funny as hell but keeps it real about the #StayWoke movement and everything pretty much that we thirty somethings go through. MissDiddy, I have been following her career for years now. From the outside looking in it seems like she lives a life of luxury. The reason why I love her, she shows all behind the scenes on how she is achieving the different milestones in her life. That motivates me and reminds me the grind never stops. Then I follow natural hair vloggers and fitness people. Honestly, the list goes on and there is a purpose as to why I have hit that follow button.

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Facebook is mainly to stay connected to co-workers, family, and childhood friends. Outside of that, you can see the tumbleweeds on that account. My twitter was set up originally for my random come to Jesus thoughts, moments, and to make a guy jealous (Y’all already know I’m petty). Currently, I use it for my brand, help promote other brands, and random thoughts. Snapchat is my own reality show, I love documenting a piece of my life on there.

I will agree that some things should be kept off social media. My relationship is rarely displayed on my social media. This is not because of trifling individuals that use social media as a tool to destroy happy homes, it’s just because that is a part of my life I do not feel like displaying 24/7. My family also do not make a lot of appearances. The fact I use my accounts for my brand, I do not feel the need to mix too much other than myself into it all.

Anyone who feels sharing different things on social media is a distraction should definitely exit stage left. I for one love social media and feel it is necessary for our culture. I have built relationships with people I would have never met if it was not for social media. It helps bring awareness to things a lot of millennials would not know about. So my social media accounts are here to stay.

deal with it

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Sundays are either ending of the week or beginning. For me, it is the beginning of the week. I’m usually putting the finishing touches on my weekend and getting ready for the work week. Unlike the glamours lives of the folks, I follow on Instagram and Snapchat I do have a 9-5. As I reflect on the prior week it got me to thinking about the interview I heard on Insecuritea: The Insecure Aftershow. Yvonne Orji and Jay Ellis were the guest on the episode, Yvonne plays Molly and Jay plays the infamous Lawrence. Yvonne said you have to be someone who is willing to date your level of crazy. Wow so simply put but yet there are a lot of things to unravel with that statement.  What if you have not identified your brand of crazy yet? Do not worry, I’m here to help.

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Identify What’s Your Crazy

There are levels to crazy. You can have the pop off queens/king, who do not care whos around she/he will go off in public of any minimal sign of disrespect. Then you have the quiet crazy….you know the one that will not say anything right at first but as soon as they get some liquor courage you better hide. There are many identities when dealing with someone who has a crazy streak. The first step is identifying which one are you.

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Which Crazy Deserves A Relationship

THEY ALL DO!!! I honestly believe in the saying that there is someone for everyone. With that being said, you still have to be someone that you care about flaws in all. If you see that their brand of crazy is a bit much for you, do not be selfish, just end the relationship. Allow someone that can handle that package the opportunity instead of trying to change them.

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Unpacking Your Crazy

Remember what I told you before, there are levels to the ish. I like to think I’m a master at this part. It took until I was 27 but I found someone that was worth be unpacking my crazy onto. Granted we did not start our committed relationship until 2016, he still was exposed to my brand of crazy. Oh, and I was introduced to his, which I nickname Baby Kanye. The fact of the matter is, when everything was exposed, we still stuck around. My advice is to unpack in the first 90 days of dating. Stop hiding who you really are in fear they will not except you.

My brand of crazy is only meant to be handled by a very strong individual. When looking at the past relationships and how they ended, I see now they were not built for ever after. My opinion the relationship and vibe seem to work when your brand of crazy matches. I have to admit I’m not as crazy as my man, but we are truly equally crazy about one another.

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