The Best Thing I Ever Ate

There is a show on The Cooking channel which I love watching but anyway, the show is called “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”. I can’t pick just one though. I’ve been eating for 30 years and I have so many favorite!

The best thing I ever ate
If these photos don’t make you drool even just a little then you’re not living your life right, I’m just kidding – I know you love your life. I hope you love your life because you only get one of them. Anyway, enough motivation because that is for another post. However you can visit “My Guide To Confidence In 6 steps” if you need a little self love at this very moment, or you can pin this post and come back when you have time to read it through.

The mocha pudding from a place at Carolina Beach that I can’t for the life of me remember the name of the restaurant. Look at it though, how can you not want to grab a spoon and devour it?! The mocha and the caramel are made for each other when it comes to this dessert.

9E3483B4-ACA9-4F60-A652-E2D25705B4EE

Chocolate Lasagna & Zeppoli from Olive Garden, don’t knock it until you try it! It’s so rich and the cream choose brings together the chocolate mousse and the thin chocolate layers of cake. There are shavings a top the lasagna to top it off and it makes it so pretty but you can’t wait to dig in. You can definitely share it with someone else became it is a little on the rich side.

C3678C2D-EEBC-44C2-930F-6B3BC62277F4

Roscoto wine is my favourite! It’s a sweet wine that pairs well with desserts so a glass or two with the chocolate lasagna. You can get Rosocto ate Total Wine, trust me if you like a sweet red wine then you’ll want to be all over this!
E19F2C83-6F84-4D42-BA1F-82107F6BACB7

Not Your Mama’s Banana a Pudding is absolutely amazing! When I first tasted it my mother and were in Savanah, the first time checking out the scenery and doing the tourist thing we decided we wanted to see what the hype was about Paula Dean’s restaurant. I found the recipe from The Food Network and I fell in love as well as every event I’ve taken it to.

574769B5-2B81-4AFE-808A-29C4CFF73A5D

I hope this post has satisfied your sweet teeth in a very cyber way, if that’s a thing. I hope you stick around because I may keep up and add on top this post as I find new favorites.

 

What is one of your favorite foods that you can’t wait to shovel into your mouth?

My Guide to Confidence in 6 Steps

Wow…This is my first guest blog!

When I first started blogging, the thing I was most excited about was having other people read my thoughts and hear my advice. But then, when I started writing, I was like ‘woah.. this means I am totally vulnerable to criticism!’

This, I’m sure, is relatable for so many people – not just bloggers! If you’re applying for a promotion and you’re asked to present to a group, you may feel vulnerable and insecure about your ideas in the same way.

Nonetheless to strive for what we want, we absolutely must remove ourselves from our comfort zone and remind ourselves of a few very important things.

For my first ever Guest Blog post, I’d like to share with you some advice on confidence. It’s something we; lack, build, lose and encourage. But how? And why?

My Guide to Confidence in 6 Steps

Confidence is a feeling of belief or faith in someone that you can rely on. It is a mindset and ‘someone’ can be yourself or anyone else.

We are encouraged to be confident from such a young age, but the methods to attain it are often never mentioned. One seemingly timeless piece of advice is to ‘imagine everyone is naked’ when giving a speech – has this ​really ever worked for anyone?

So, since lockdown, I’ve chosen to take some time for reflection. I have reflected upon who I believe I am as a person. Some traits I am sure I can use to describe ‘me’

– such as organised and conscientious. However, when it comes to confidence, I can’t quite make my mind up.

It is so natural to be confident in certain settings over others. You may find that in the office you are comfortable chatting with lots of different people and have no trouble with being the centre of attention, thus, confident. However, when faced with your In-Laws, it may be a different story and you may feel less confident in your own abilities to hold a conversation.

 This is normal! We often find ourselves changing our persona depending on who we are surrounded by and our confidence may fluctuate depending on how comfortable we are in any given social setting.

You may be reading this and ask yourself ‘but how do I become more confident?’ You may be quite introverted and want to put yourself out there a little more.

Well, here are my tips on how to become a more confident person. Some may come across as blatantly obvious – but I feel it is important to remind yourself of these things. Others may be less obvious – I hope you make a mental note of these and remind yourself when needed.

Your goals surrounding confidence will differ, as will your reasonings. Nonetheless, I hope you find my advice useful! Here goes…

  1. ALWAYS Stay True to Yourself

It is so important and possibly my number one piece of advice for just about anything you want to achieve. In this case, you want to gain confidence. The most effective way to do this is be sure of yourself and what you stand for. You’re going to need to know what it is you want (I’ll come back to this later on) but most of all, you needtoknoww​hy.​Whydoyouneedtoportrayconfidenceinasocialsettingwith high profile members of a particular organisation? ‘​To make an impression, make yourself known and to put you in good stead for a career.’ ​Whatever the reason, you need to understand your motives and stay true to who you are and what you wish to achieve.

  1. Write Down Your Goals

A major factor in confidence is the belief that what you want to achieve can actually come to fruition. I know it sounds cliche, but you really can achieve what you set your mind to. The moment you start doubting this is the moment your confidence lacks and you begin to falter or deviate from your goals. So, by writing them down in an assertive way, you will be able to more easily envisage yourself achieving them.

BDF1FE76-3916-4C69-9C73-168642FD7AE2

If you are creative, make your page colourful and pretty. If you are more pragmatic, organise your goals into; personal, relationships, work and exercise, etc. However you choose to write down your goals, you must articulate it in a way that sounds as though it is already your reality. For instance, ‘I will get a promotion’ or ‘I will save enough money for a house.’ This allows us to more easily visualise ourselves living our goals with confidence…

  1. Visualization

This is an age old technique but it is so effective and has certainly worked for me. To visualise your goals, you are imagining your life as though your aspirations are achieved. This makes the goal more realistic and allows you to see the good in what you want to achieve. Visualisation of your goals may motivate you to push that much harder for what you want. But not only this, it will help you grow in confidence to work towards what you want. It will leave you in no doubt about what and why you want your life to take a certain path.

  1. Don’t Be Afraid of Rejection or Failure

Part of growing in confidence is to strive for things, however, what holds a lot of people back is the idea of rejection or failure. This is totally understandable, however, it is something we must overcome to grow in confidence and achieve our goals. So, how do we do that? Although easier said than done, we must not be afraid of rejection by others or failures. To be rejected by a new employer or by failing to achieve what we wanted to, we are simply creating new learning experiences to carry forward to your next venture. For instance, you apply for a new job at a different firm.

You are successful in your written application but do not get the job after your interview. This is not a failure because you have gained invaluable application and interview experience for a job that you will get elsewhere at a later date. (Always try to receive some feedback in this instance, too!) One handy tip is to walk away from your interview and write notes and tips for your future self! Whatever form rejection may take, you need to remember that you’re still progressing towards your goals, and

 this experience will give you the confidence to do so in the near future. Don’t give up!

  1. Build Positive Relationships

I have spoken about this in my previous blogposts on’​ Protecting Your Energy,​’ however, it is so important to build positive and meaningful relationships. Why would we ever choose to be friends with people that try to knock our confidence? Please, please p​ lease s​ urround yourself with people that want to see you succeed and who help you along the way.

40C93CD1-E966-4C1A-A35A-6C1B97C6490C

This could be in the form of inviting you to coffee when the know you might be stressed about upcoming deadlines or simply dropping you a message to check in! Likewise, try to b​ e ​this friend to others. You’ll find the world to be a happier place when you build others up.

 

  1. Do What You Love (But Not Always)

My most ambiguous tip.. but an important one, nonetheless. Simply put, it is important to do what you love to build confidence because you are assured in what you are doing and passionate about it, too. However, you should always try to edge yourself out of your comfort zone. You never know … you might just find a new passion or fill your mind with new information, equipping yourself to achieve your goals!

Here I have only scratched the surface in what you can do to build your confidence. Simply reading this blog post will not help you, either. You need to internalise this advice and carry it with you. If you ever feel inadequate or under qualified, you need to remind yourself of these six steps. You are brilliant, you are valuable and you are confident.

Grace x

August Goals: I’m Coming For You August

May-July goals were a complete bust with the lock down, social distancing, and masks. So I’m not even going to try and report those, as there wouldn’t be hardly any thing there to write.

With a little more lenience I can deal with wearing the mask (I got really cute ones from Ken and I love them, you can even get a filter! I picked up this one and this one, so cute!

I’d like to do a little more traveling around local or near to local places but the friend and I are spontaneous so I have no idea when or where we are going. We have had a few adventures like trail rides & rock crawling plus a grueling hiking trip to Catawba Falls waterfall.

August Goals: I’m Coming For You

Miles: To hold myself accountable I want to track at least 10 miles (it’s in the triple digits here and all I’ve got is my neighborhood since the gyms aren’t open. I’m hoping to break that 10 mile mark though

August goals

Books: I hope to read at least one book this month. With all this free time you’d think I’d use it more wisely – I’ve watched a lot of I.D Network & Dr. Phil. I’ve got about 2 books I want to knock out by at least October.

Yoga: I’ve done a little but not as much as I should. I want to practice everyday and it’s not like it’s hard. I’ve just fallen out of practice, maybe explains why I’ve been so moody lately 🤔

Self care: I did get a manicure and a pedicure 2 weeks ago with my best friends whom we haven’t seen in months. With this pandemic it’s been hard to get out to do anything plus the salons were closed. I haven’t even taken a bath with a bubble bar in a few weeks, I’m running low on bubble bars but don’t want to hit up the mall and be around a bunch of people.

Mental health: This is one that’s really taken a hit! My bipolar triggers are through the rough so I have rough days instead of one or two days. Some days I’m so anxious I feel like I’m crawling out of my own skin while other days I’m so depressed I can barely get out of bed (would explain the lack of blog posts).

August goals

Social media/blog: I really would like to build my following, I’d love to make money from this blog one day. After I get back into the swing of things I’m going to offer sponsors for $5 a month, I’d love to have you! More info on that as it gets closer.

 

There you have it, my goals I’ll be setting out to accomplish given in this pandemic no one really knows.

I just want to get your perspective as a reader on a few things though:

  1. How’ve you been during this entire thing?
  2. What are the blogging secrets you use?
  3. What would you like to see on Balanced Mochas?

Chasing waterfalls

I know TLC told us not to go chasing waterfalls but but but.. they’re so beautiful!

Last week there was a few adventures, a friend and I had a few days off so we decided to make the most of those days.

We packed our bags and headed 4 hours to Asheville in the western North Carolina Blue Ridge mountains.

Chasing waterfalls: Beautiful Waterfalls Of NC

I love Asheville, it’s such a vibrant city. There are trading companies, chocolatiers, old factories that house local artists, historical architecture, and the beautiful Biltmore Estate (very intriguing couple with an 800 acre estate).

These waterfalls are gorgeous but the photos don’t do them justice. I’ve decided to break them up into two different posts as there is a lot to be said about each beautiful fall.

938E8910-696F-4325-8D38-9BF3E9208C14

First up we have Catawba Falls, which is my favorite!  Catawba Falls consists of two different falls but is one collective fall. There is a hike up to a second waterfall at the top of the mountain.

The 100 foot tall Catawba falls is located 26 miles East of Asheville. In 2012 the U.S. Forest Service opened a parking lot for hiking the waterfall trail in Pisgah National Forest.

There is a footbridge so no rock hoping is required to access the waterfalls allowing visitors to enjoy the falls even when the water is high.

There is a dam and stone fountain that was used as a power generator in the 1900’s but from the trail you can see a waterfall as well as the dam.

4D48EB57-27B3-4033-8CCB-0CD125272BCE

Upper Falls of Catawba

The hike is not for the faint of heart though. The hike to the top is only about 2 miles but you use 3 points of contact (both hands and at least one foot engaged on a root, rock, mountain side or anything you can grab onto to keep you from falling) pretty much the entire time. This falls is very dangerous if you’re not a skilled climber or hiker.

3F3DE0C7-02FF-4C99-952E-E7A0CABDBA77

The trail leads to the 100ft lower falls, with many spots to rest and take photos of the lower falls from different angles and points of views.

This trail is only half a mile but it’ll kick your butt as there are step rocks, slippery mud, narrow trails, this beast wall, and not to mention completely uphill the entire way in high altitude.

A2ADBD9D-AA45-4D87-A762-6A69EDA191C8

I got a little road rash myself, it happens when your sliding down a narrow trail in fear for every bone in your body, ya know it happens?

1D30CE7B-6F05-4B3F-872C-188F0EF896AB

Once you’ve reached the upper waterfall after a strenuous hike (with a few cuss words sprinkled about) you get to enjoy the fruits of your labor!

The water is so cold, pure, and crisp when it touches your skin it sends chills down your spine. Once you get use to the coldness of the serene water pooling from the rushing falls above you’ll enjoy yourself.

We took a little time to enjoy the scenery, take in the smells of nature, and even splash around. We built a few rock structures that we were proud of too.

BF474940-133F-4F03-BFF0-E8481323D591

I decided to take a breather so I sat my butt i front of this huge boulder rock for a bit. A friend decided he was going to Jenga our rock formations while I relaxed. I saw something slithering out of the corner of my eye to turn around to see a snake swimming 4 inches away from me! I’m deathly terrified of snakes, point blank, end of story!

525C651D-DDD2-4F98-8C38-AC6534A7012A

After shaking and trying to catch my breath for What seemed like forever I finally got it all together, however I didn’t see where the snake went so I didn’t get back in the water on that side.

 

We had a lot of fun and slept great that night. If you find yourself in Asheville, at least check out the lower falls unless you’re an experienced hiker then definitely check out the upper falls.

Things I Do You Probably Don’t

Everyone has their own quirks, it makes them who they are just as yours makes you who you are.

What some may consider odd or weird others think is perfectly normal, so who is to say?

I had a lot of fun writing the list for this post so I hope you’ll enjoy it as well. Let’s head into the list shall we..

Things I do you probably don’t

Things I Do You Probably Don’t 

1. I only eat finger foods if I’m in a group of more than 3 people.

There is a reasoning behind this though, when i was 3 i was in a tornado and the entire left side of my face was taken off by a cement slab – so I can’t feel it. I’m self conscious about it so finger foods it is!

2. I eat dessert first. This drives my twin brother crazy when we go out to eat. It’s the main reason I showed up for the occasion so why not. I get my entree to go so I can enjoy it at home, especially if it includes #1 ☝🏼
Things I Do You Probably Don’t - it’s what makes us unique

3. I take a shower before I take a bath, I want to make sure I’m clean so I can get clean while relaxing reading my book enjoying my “Bewitched” Lush bubble bar.

If you’re a dirty little bath taker too then I suggest the “Bewitched” bubble bar, it smells amazing! It’s only available for Halloween so you’ve got to stock up but they keep nicely. These little bars also give at least 2 baths, they are in the shape of a black cat face and they turn the water black. Soooo relaxing.

4. I listen to a new song at least 4 times when I first heard it. The first two times I’m listening to the lyrics then the other two I’m listening to the actual music. A brilliant baseline or a drummer rhythm get me every time!

5. I always get rainbow sprinkles! I think they make life better. I put that shit in everything, on my pop tarts, in my cookies & cream milkshakes, ice cream.. you get the point. SO good. I love their crunch.

Things I do you probably don’t

6. I eat pizza backwards, so crust first. I also use a fork and knife. No judging, again my face.

7. I always order free magazines but never read them. They usually get dropped off at my moms house. I might skin the recipes though.

8. I love to write and read! Everyone thinks I’m being a weird nerd when I’d rather read than watch tv.

9. I sometimes do yoga in bed, yeah it’s lazy I know. Some days I just don’t feel like getting up to complete a routine. I’ve found a few yoga poses that I can do in bed that absolutely make my day. I don’t know if it’s because I’m relaxing in a seated or laying position but my back or shoulders will pop now and then. I feel the tension in my muscles automatically ease.

What’s your quirk? We all have more than one I’m sure. Share with me what makes you unique?

5 ideas to spark creativity

We all fall into a creative slump from time to time but that’s no reason to let yourself down. I’m sharing 5 Ways To Spark Creativity!

I took a month off from blogging and even my freelance business. I was in a rut, I didn’t feel like doing anything but being by myself usually sleeping.

I needed a break, a break from the stressors that helped me dig into this rut. Neither of these were the root to the rut but as life goes on things happen and sometimes we need a break.

I’ve taken a month to get myself emotionally and mentally ready to get back into real life. The entire virus scare didn’t help at all either.

As someone with high anxiety I drew back from going out and also asked my mom to social distance by staying at home. She did because she thought it was a scary time too.

If you’re in a rut or feel yourself sliding into one there are things you can do to help keep yourself creative and keep those other monsters at bay.

This post isn’t about sadness, loneliness, or Anything other than getting creative. Brush all of those other emotions aside to allow room for your creativity.

5 Ways To Spark Creativity

There is a myriad of ways to find your work once again. Give these ideas a try, you’ll be back at it in no time.

5 Ways To Spark Creativity

  1. Keep an idea book close
  2. Create an environment that encourages creativity
  3. Create a vision board
  4. Explore what you don’t know
  5. Join other creatives

Keep an idea book close – when you have an idea you can write it down so you don’t forget. These ideas can help spark creativity when you’re trying to decide on blog posts, journal prompts, and ideas to ponder.

Ways To Spark Joy

Create an environment that encourages creativity – make things mobile (if possible), this helps to spark creativity by keeping the mind and spaces open to new ideas. Put creative tools in view because out of sight out of mind.

Create a vision board – this is one of the things I love! It helps keep me focused on my goals. When you stay focused you’ll help manifest those goals too. Your board can be digital, collage, visual or all three.

Explore what you don’t know – exploring things you don’t know to me are exciting but then again I love to learn new things. You can never have enough knowledge regardless if it’s a subject you know all about or nothing.

Ways to spark joy

Join other creatives – when you have a group you can count on makes everything easier. With a creative group you can bounce ideas off of each other, draw inspiration from others, and have a place to talk when you’d need.

If you’re in need of some creativity give one or all of these ideas a try, I’m more than sure you’ll have a great session and have a few new ideas.

What do you do when you want to be creative but don’t know where to start? I am always looking for new ideas to keep in my toolkit.

10 Yoga Poses For Anxiety

It’s hard to smile through anxiety, exhaustion, depression & frustrations. In case you think anxiety is “something you can get over” I’m here to tell you that it’s not because if that were possible all anxiety and depression would not exist.

The truth is for ones who maybe fortunate enough to swerve by and miss these states of mind all together and don’t know what it’s like, depression is like sitting in a room full of people with a blank stare and not a thought in your head but hearing everything going on around you and being too exhausted to respond to any of it. Anxiety feels like an elephant is sitting on your chest while your mind whirls through days and days of events in 10 seconds then around again, you’re too agitated to try to make sense.

FA50E068-4C0F-4AC9-86F9-417093D4FBCB

How does all of this sound? Yeah, terrible. So just think of the person that is suffering from anxiety and depression, think about what they go through on a daily basis. Day in and day out.

It can be debilitating some days, going over everything your thinking, feeling, wondering, and questioning. Some days you feel like you can’t even breathe but you try to empty your mind of all thoughts and try to let all emotion fall away while you try to escape if only for a minutes worth of peace.

1A218EA5-F4AE-4C0B-BA13-1D35939CA05A

I love that mental health has come to light over the last few years after being neglected for what seems like forever.

As each of us share our stories, tips, and tricks we learn more and more which only expands our mental health toolkits and helps us meet and reach out to new friends that understand the struggle we’re bounded in.

10 yoga poses for anxiety

To get to know your friendly asana’s lets take a look at what these poses are and how they can help with anxiety:

”An asana is a body posture, originally and still a general term for a sitting meditation pose, and later extended in hatha yoga and modern yoga as exercise, to any type of pose or position, adding reclining, standing, inverted, twisting, and balancing poses.”

These poses are great for helping to relieve anxiety, these poses are also beginner friendly but don’t push yourself if you can’t complete the pose. That’s just motivation to keep giving them a try, huh?

  1. Bound Angel Pose
  2. Bow pose
  3. Bridge pose
  4. Cat/Cow pose
  5. Camel pose
  6. Half Moon pose
  7. Extended puppy pose
  8. Staff Pose
  9. Seated forward bend pose
  10. Legs up wall pose (my favorite)

You’ll feel better instantly after these poses, they give a sense of relief to all those anxieties by quieting the mind and concentrating on your breathing while also helping the psychical ailments as well while working to help lengthen and stretch the targeted muscles of the poses.

As I stated previously these poses are kept in mind with the beginner in mind. You can always go deeper into the pose if you’re use to doing yoga on the regular.

If you decided to give these gentle poses a try leave me a note in the comments about how you felt after your sesh, I’d love to hear from you!

Silk Elements Heat Protectant Spray Review

I have no idea where my curly hair came from, the only people with it in my family just so happens to be me and my aunt. 

Needless to say we both despise it, it just takes so much up keep! As you can see below it gets pretty unruly if it dries naturally with little to no product. However it is still so soft and smells great thanks to my shampoo and conditioner, with a very light scent.

(In the photo I’m not wearing any makeup, I’m a little self conscious about that. I was in a tornado when I was 3 and have broken blood vessels on my cheeks and face.)

CB6346D2-6759-4E4D-8762-B48ED857C9B4

Until i got it trimmed and thinned out it was halfway down my back curly and almost to my butt when i straightened it. Which took me a little over 2 hours to straighten after all was said and done.

I love natural hair products because they help give my curls the moisture they need to survive being my hair. I wear it in messy buns most of the time so I’m constantly breaking it.

Silk effects heat protectant review

How is wearing your hair up everyday harmful?

The hair tie breaks hair off where it’s held tightly to hold the style desired, if you do this everyday you’re causing a massive amount of breakage. Try alternating styles between loose and tight hairstyles for less breakage.

A friend told me about the Silk Elements line of product and that day I went to pick up the shampoo, conditioner, and the heat protectant spray.

10097818-A1AF-433F-83BC-784E1EC402DB

Umm can I say that I’m hooked?! Now it’s pretty much all I use except for a little John Frieda straightener product. When using the products they don’t weigh my hair down like products I’ve tried in the past have. There is also no flaking from the products, which I’ve also had happen.

I love a good investment when it comes to myself (who doesn’t right?) especially when it makes me feel pretty and like I have my shit together (yeah I’m totally winging it).

I love how soft and shiny my hair is after it’s straightened using the Silk Elements heat protectant spray and a small amount of Moroccan argon oil on my ends.


I also like how neither of the products have a strong smell, smells gives me headaches which is another big reason I’m excited to find them!

Ugh, you can definitely see the difference! The style lasts for days with a little dry shampoo as well.

E8A7CDC1-DAC5-450A-A343-E1B20372B4A9

Im not by any means a beauty blogger so those of you who are may be like “ok what’s she proud of?!”. I’m starting to learn my hair which I’ve never done before, so I’m pretty proud of myself for throwing together random products that actually work for me. I did the same when I do wear my hair curly.

Needless to say these products will forever be in my bathroom cabinet for as long as I can find them. Anything that tames this mane is a must keep!

Do you have a new product I should try? Tell me in the comments!