Archive for the ‘Life’s a Party!’ Category

Let me explain.

Thursday, August 8th, 2019

Why hello there! Super long time, no see.

Things have been wonderful, trying, and evolving to say the least. I don’t want this post to be extremely long and boring. There will be plenty more blog posts to catch you guys up on everything. I’ve had a lot of growing pains within the last year and I want to share the most recent events to give you a general idea of what has been going on lately.

I have had a uphill battle with my autoimmune disease, Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis (also known as Hypersensitivity Vasculitis). This form of vasculitis is  a disease characterized by inflammation of small vessels. This disease typically manifests on the legs in the form of a rash/bumps which can turn into large skin ulcers or lesions. If you think it sounds painful and gross, you’re completely correct. I’ve been dealing with the symptoms of this disease for years now and thought it was something I could resolve on my own by changing up my lifestyle.

Some of these changes seem to work for a short amount of time. I’ve tried Whole 30 (which by the way I loved and should really do again), Paleo, Keto, Gluten Free, you name it, I thought it was going to be the cure for this disease and have me glowin’ like Beyonce.

About two months ago, I started one of the worse flares I have ever experienced. Something about this flare set off red flags and I knew I was in for something major. Typically, standing and sitting  for extended periods of time would trigger a flare. Which sucks for a girl that is use to going to 3 concerts a week and dancing the night away. The first sign of a bump/hive on my legs, I would take Benadryl before bed and sleep it off. Usually it would clear up by morning and I could go about my life. But not this flare, this was something different.

I tried my typical ‘drug myself with night time pain relief and allergy meds’ method but the pain from the hives on my legs literally wouldn’t allow me to rest. After about 2 sleepless nights, I began to panic. How was I going to be well rested enough to get up and work? How was I going to heal from the flare? Are my symptoms getting worse?

Days became weeks with no relief. I turned to the Facebook vasculitis groups for answers or for anyone that could relate. Everyone showed empathy and sympathy but I didn’t really find any answers to resolve my current flare. I had no choice but to start calling out of work to rest since I was missing so much sleep due to the amount of pain I was in. Usually my flares would take place on my lower legs, but this flare was on the back of my thighs. Which is literally the worse place it could have happened. I was unable to lay or sit without feeling like I was sitting on knives. I didn’t know what to do or what doctor to contact but I knew this had to be the last time I ever felt this way.

A common theme that emerges among people living with an autoimmune disease is the feeling of being alone with their illness. I felt very trapped in this rollercoaster of “eh, I feel okay today” and then the next day feeling like I wanted to just get my legs removed. I started going to every doctor I could think of and was prescribed medication for depression and given pain killers. Nothing made sense and I felt like no one was able to help me.

Finally, about a month ago I saw a nurse practitioner who I am pretty sure saved my life. The wounds on the back of my thighs had an infection and needed to be cleaned surgically. They were also so deep at this point, that I needed to get a skin graft (I actually received a xenograft which is a skin graft where donor skin is used).  I was hospitalized for a week and a half and let me tell you how grateful I was for this. I finally felt like I was being heard, plus my pain was managed enough where I was able to rest. The gratitude I have for the doctors and nurses that treated me is out of this world.

I have been out of the hospital now for 2 weeks and still in recovery.  I have a in home nurse come to dress my grafts twice a week and I go to the wound clinic at the hospital once a week. I have some pretty fantastic zombie skin grafts that are looking healthy and healing. My stride is becoming less of a waddle and more of a walk. This blog post is my introduction back into the bloggersphere because this something I need right now.  It’s something I missed and I have been neglecting my passions.

One of the most common questions I am asked is, “How did the flare happen and why was it so bad?!” The simple answer is stress but the slightly longer answer is forgetting to live my purpose. It’s so easy to become a person that says “someday” or “I want to” and put YOU on the back burner. I’m done with that.  With the help of a new medication, an amazing support system, and a whole bunch of much needed self love, I am pretty sure I am jumpstarting a new bad ass chapter of my life.

Thank you to all of you that visited me in the hospital, sent me messages, left me comments and sent positive and healing energy my way. Your beautiful energy is more than I could ever asked for and is majorly appreciated.

XO, a go go bye!

 

#YogaAndYoncé movement.

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

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Over a month ago, I told you all about a little journey that I call #YogaAndYoncé. This journey has changed my life in such a short time, it truly is amazing. I am proud to call this transformation mine, and I hope that you can use this inspiration and motivation to push through to being the best version of yourself that you can be. I’m going to share a little bit of this fitness movement’s background, and then I’m going to share my results with you.

Living a successful, happy, healthy life means that there will be some sacrifices. I mean, it looks like successful people have it made, right? The truth is, no, these people work their butts off to reach and continue that journey. When I started on this journey, I immediately thought about Béyonce. This amazing woman shows us all what a happy, successful, and balanced life looks like. She’s got a family, and she’s known around the world for her untouchable talent. She gives back to the world so much and seems like a genuinely happy person. She’s a role model to so many people, myself included. She’s Wonderwoman, or so I’m convinced.

I wanted to start a wellness program that would inspire women to nourish themselves without sacrificing the glamour. Is it always glamorous? Absolutely not. Seeking a natural, holistic way to be fit, I chose yoga. This is an exercise that brings you closer to yourself by encouraging moments of clarity. You can see that yoga is not just about the physical exercise; but something that would truly feeds the whole self – physically, mentally, and spiritually.

Outside of yoga, I also have hired a personal trainer, slowly but surely becoming a regular at the gym and soon will start up with dance classes again. Strength, cardio, and clarity…OH MY!

The whole point of #YogaAndYoncé is to exemplify that you CAN have it all; be the boss, run the show, be healthy, be happy, and have a rockin’ life. Life doesn’t always go according to plan, so having a strong foundation of confidence and self-awareness can pull us through anything. We’re tough. We’re bosses – of our lives and of our careers.

Now for my results….

With the #YogaAndYoncé movement, I lost 27 pounds in the very first month and a half. I feel so much stronger – mentally and physically. #YogaandYoncé has brought me into closer view of my overall wellness. The struggle has been VERY real but I am still proud of how far i’ve come. I know that to take care of those around me, I must take care of myself.

If you are looking for a way to naturally nourish your overall being without sacrificing glamour, start your own movement! Or hell, join the #YogaAndYoncé movement today. Now. Right now!! As always…

Stay sexy Gotham!
latanya
Artwork by Jaymzee Cat

My brain has too many tabs open.

Thursday, March 5th, 2015

Jena Ardell - Princess

‘Sup Party Monsters!

Living a life of pure celebration is forever fun but very tiresome. Between crafting, blog plotting, projects and life it is super hard for me to calm my brain down at night when it’s time for me to get my beauty sleep.

Lately, I have been researching how to live a overall healthier life. Something that the majority of people lack is proper sleep. Being that it is a “easy” fix, I figured I would start there! I mean getting comfy and passing out is pretty easy, right?! Well, I was greatly mistaken. Every night for the last month, I tell myself “I will go to bed no later than 11PM” and then 1AM rolls around and I wonder what the hell am I still doing awake?

In honor of Sleep Awareness Week (yes, it’s real), I have been researching ways to improve my sleep and relax my brain. Sleep Awareness Week is an annual public education and awareness campaign to promote the importance of sleep. To that I say CHEERS to raising awareness for one of the most relaxing activities ever!

Jena Ardell - Beauty Sleep -

In my many Google searches and conversations, I have noticed that the majority of people that get very little sleep think that “sleep is a waste of time”. But obvi, that is a bunch of rubbish. The more sleep you get, the more years you add to your life. The occasional restless night is one thing, but chronic sleep loss raises a much deeper concern. Too many restless nights can lead to a weak immune system, poor heart health, memory loss, lame mood swings, and an out of whack metabolism. No one has got the time to rock a muffin top, have heart palpitations, and  get enraged trying to remember where you parked your car! I am definitely NOT about that life.

It seems like on average, my body can only handle about 6 hours of sleep without me waking up. It is recommended that the average adult should sleep 7.5 to 9 hours a night. I am dreaming (not literally) of getting at least 7 hours a night. It’s my goal so I will gladly take the 6 hours I have been averaging. Sleep patterns and tendencies can be linked to so many things involving your wellness and development. Sleep patterns can even tell characteristics about your personality. I can be a perpetual tosser and turner but for the most part I am a  “Yearner”.  I typically have a hard time making quick decisions but I have an open personality and I am very sociable.

Jena Ardell - Sleeping Beauty

Let’s face it night owls, sleep is essential to our health and happiness. Some of the major steps I am taking to gain control of my health (and my zzz’s) is purchasing a humidifier, ending my green tea intake at 4PM, and having mini dance parties until I am exhausted. I am also thinking about getting a aromatherapy vaporizer, upping my white noise game, and daily meditation practices. I will make this commitment to myself in honor of Sleep Awareness Week. Let’s start this sleep revolution, y’all!

Speaking of sleep revolution, the folks over at Casper are partying in the name of sleep all month long! Check out their adorable  “sleep type” graphic that depicts the most common sleep types.

Casper Mattress Sleepers

What is your sleep type? I personally don’t think I am any of these types. Not even the “Party Animal”! I think I am a “Cotton Candy Machine”. No matter how many times people explain how they work, I will never understand their magic. You turn one on, they create sugar magic, and keep the party going. My brain is a lot like a cotton candy machine. I lay down to rest, my brain cuts on, I lay thinking for an hour or so, come up with rad ideas and then I am up until all hours of the night. The sleep struggle is real but I am ready to take it on!

How are you going to celebrate Sleep Awareness Week? Is the sleep struggle also real for you? What are some of your methods to getting to bed when you would rather be up partying? Tell me all of your secrets!

Happy dreams and per usual…

Stay sexy Gotham!
latanya

P.S. Did you know that if you don’t sleep for 10 days straight you can actually DIE?! That or you turn into Brad Pitt.

Photos by Jena Ardell Photography.

Create your bed of roses.

Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

Sprinkles and Booze- Rose Decor

Hey there Space Girls and Space Boys!

Besides being a blogger, online personality, and all around glitter witch, I have been expanding my Sprinkles and Booze brand into the world of styling and designing. I have a great passion for creating colorful festive decor and making things look lush. I have massive styling dreams and to fuel my need to bring the party to the world I have decided to creative products to inspire, promote daily celebrating and overall spice up the lives of others.

I have been cutting, drawing, gluing, designing, glitter spilling, and painting out all of my ideas as of lately. I noticed that the process has made me a calmer and happier, but I also realized that this is always the case. A lot of love goes into creating and handmade items. It’s one of the reasons why Etsy thrives and is so popular. When something is made with love it runs through the product and makes it rather special.

In the world of crafters and do-it-yourselfers, you will find a market of survivors and fighters. Where there is passion, there is quality. Creating something you believe in is the secret to a sound body, mind, and spirit.

Sprinkles and Booze Rose Decor 1

I keep it no secret when I am super stressed out or overwhelmed. I might mention it in passing on Facebook or in a tweet. The past month, I have cuddled up with a blanket, busted out some craft supplies and decided to make whatever came to mind. This past month was also one of the dopest stress-free months i’ve had in a while. I made items that I actual adore and want to share with others. In my life I have learned that relaxation, stress relief, and creativity always ties together. My personal creative zen garden is on fleek!  Creating and collaborating are my anti-drug.

It’s a blessing to be able to unwind within the craft you love. I take pride in making things that make others smile while smiling. As I work all of the worries of the world melt away and I focus my attention on the task at hand. I am drawn in to a meditative state and my brain becomes a glittery mental hippy fest.

Along with the zen like quality crafting promotes, it also boosts confidence within myself. Do you remember as a child making something at school and being so jazzed about bringing it home to show your mother and father? Imagine having that feeling on a daily. The entire process of envisioning, producing, and realizing a product to its final form is a party starter and boosts your self worth. It’s like you’re creating your own stunning  pick me up.

Sprinkles and Booze Rose Decor 2

Crafting is my constant. I forever find peace in building and creating something fun and meaningful. I think creating and being inspired is the key to everlasting youth and happiness. Creative energy stimulates my brain just as a good book would and I am excited to share my creations with the world. My one true wish is that others can feel the love that I pour into my handmade pieces of work. It’s my way of giving the world a unicorn kiss! I hope this post reaches you and blasts you with inspiration like the most powerful of all Care Bears!

Feeling inspired? What have you been working on lately? Thank you for allowing me this moment to gush and as always…

Stay sexy Gotham!
latanya

I’m majorly, totally, butt crazy in love with Josh Valentine’s Day Playlist!

Monday, February 9th, 2015

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Howdy Love Monsters!

The week of amour is upon us and as we all know, love isn’t always perfect. It doesn’t come easy and that is part of the beauty of it. It has tons of obstacles, challenges, glitter fights, and twists and turns.

I put together a little playlist as an attempt to capture the insane roller coaster that we call “love”. I hope it gets you in the “Valentine’s Day” mood no matter how you plan on spending your week! Listen to it while you bake, while you’re at work, where ever!

Love can be magical and it starts with you. Loving yourself is forever the key to loving others!

Enjoy! Forever yours…stay sexy Gotham!

latanya