"Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it's always your choice." - Wayne Dyer

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Friday, March 27, 2015

Inspiring Youth: Yamiles Elicier

Iconic, stunning, bold, original. 

That is what comes to mind when I think of the new clothing line, Zelimay by 18 year old Dominican-Puerto Rican designer Yamiles Elicier. 

Yamiles has always been passionate about fashion designing, loving every part of the creative process. By the age of 10 years old, Yamiles was already designing and tailoring her own clothes, though she lacked the confidence to share her genius with the world until she was around 14. 




Her decision to begin sewing her own products was due to her limited financial situation, but the young woman is an optimist; she would see amazing pieces in store windows and on magazine covers, and instead of thinking "I wish I could afford that", she thought "I know I could make better!" She was inspired to create clothing that people would crave


Now, the ambitious young woman doesn't let any circumstance hold her back. Her inspiration stems from anything, from Tumblr to architecture, that is beautiful and catches her creative eye. Once she has an idea in mind, virtually nothing can stop her from making that vision a remarkable work of art. 





Sure enough, as soon as people realized her immense talent, the orders began pouring in! The first piece she ever created for someone was a green v-neck dress that she made for her cousin. The sexy gown was tailor made to hug and compliment the curves of the voluptuous woman. Needless to say, the client was extremely satisfied, feeling great and looking great as she sported a Zelimay original. 
Model: Cousin of designer

That was when Yamiles realized that she had what it takes to become the next Oscar de la Renta or better! 
"I realized that my dream could be a reality when I not only saw that I was equipped to start my own brand, but when others were there to support me as well." - Yamlies E.
The talented young fashion designer also stated that there is nothing more amazing than having strangers believe in her work as if they knew her personally. When she sees others wearing her ensembles, she sometimes finds it hard to believe that she could produce such breathtaking designs. And when she wears her own pieces (she would be crazy not to!) she feels exhilarated and professional, like nothing and no one can touch her. 

 


Perhaps one of her best qualities is that Miss Elicier never shies away from a challenge. She constantly pushes herself to go above and beyond what she was previously capable of. The words "comfort zone" are foreign to her, as she is accustomed to breaking limits and not letting anyone tell her what she can or cannot create. Fashion has enabled her to grow and become more patient, daring, and selfless. Her family, who has witnessed her evolve into a mature artist, is one of the sources of her unshakable confidence, having always encouraged her and supported her talent and dreams. 

Yamiles has already had enormous amounts of success, landing photo shoots with models, features in magazines, and even interviews on television, but she humbly acknowledges that she still has a long way to go. She is grateful for every person who has entered her life and who desires to work with her. 
Model: Mitchelle M Cobb, 34 years old  Photographer: LUXe Creative Imaging





Within the next 5 years, Yamiles envisions Zelimay to be an international brand and a household name, having shows all over the world, and establishing a little family of her own. But for now she continues to build a strong foundation for her brand. She is well aware that this is only the beginning and that there is no where to go but up. 
 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Chilly Throw Back Thursday!

It was so hot at the park today! 

The only way Nico and I could stand it, was by reminiscing about the frosty Winters passed. 







Have a cool TBT! ^.^

Friday, March 20, 2015

3 Strategies for Feeding Stubborn Toddlers

My 19 month old son is as stubborn as they come. As he begins to explore his independence and to realize his place in the world, he is often unreasonable and too clever for his own good. His strong will can be especially frustrating when it comes to eating meals. 


A once easy 20 minute dinner routine suddenly turned into an hour long nightmare. It was the part of my day that I absolutely dreaded, until I started paying attention to what Nico was really trying to tell me. 


1. Change the plate: It was 30 minutes in to our evening food war and Nico was on his 3rd bite of food. His dad was sitting close by eating the same meal from his own plate. In an attempt to help my futile efforts to get nutrients in to Nico's little stomach, Pedro stooped down and offered Nico a bite of food from his own bowl which Nico happily and willingly accepted. The very next day during lunch time, I put Nico's lunch in a grown up bowl and fed him with a grown up spoon and he blissfully ate every single bite. From now on, I will serve him a variety of food on a variety of platters.

2.  Stoop to his level: Another thing I realized when my husband fed Nico from his bowl was that he got down to Nico's eye level and made eye contact with him while smiling. Frowning and worrying while trying to feed your child can create a tense atmosphere. While looming above them must make us seem like the enemy trying to squash their new found independence. During lunch time, instead of sitting in a big chair in front of him, I sat on the floor in front of him and offered him lots of smiles and encouragement. It worked like a charm! 

3. GOT WATER?: Along with all of those things that I tried, I also gave Nico a little bit of water in his Sippy Cup and let him decide when it was time for a drink. To my surprise, he did not try to chug it. Instead he would take a drink after a couple of bites of food, just like mommy and daddy. He especially enjoyed feeling like he was in control of at least one part of his meal!


BirthRight: Casting DAY 1

Today was the first official day of my first production, a short film called Birthright!






 It is a modern day Cain and Abel thriller with a murderous twist! 




The process was long, but I was fortunate enough to be in good company. My husband, Pedro, came along to help and look after Nico, and my amazing AD, Chris, made sure that everything progressed smoothly.

Chris working hard!

We met some extremely talented actors and actresses and we are eager to begin the selection process. They all gave such convincing performances, casting these roles is going to be nearly impossible. 


Imagine auditioning with this in your face!

Isn't she lovely?

Of course we need the green light from the world's youngest producer...



I wonder who he's going to pick!



Thursday, March 19, 2015

Date Night Dinner for Two for Under $30

Anyone who has seen Lady and the Tramp knows that spaghetti and meatballs is a signature romantic meal. 


Fortunately for us, the classic dish eliminates the need to slave over the stove for hours, trying to create the perfect Date Night dinner. Not only is this delicious entrĂ©e fast and simple to prepare, all of the ingredients can be purchased for under $30; under $20 if some are on sale! 


Meatballs:

INGREDIENTS
1lb ground beef
3/4 cup bread crumbs 
3/4 grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg
1tbs pepper
1tbs all purpose seasoning 
1 1/2tbs garlic powder
Salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Season the thawed ground beef with the spices. Then mix in the egg, bread crumbs, and grated Parmesan. 


Pull small pieces of beef and roll it into a ball in the palm of your hand and place on a NON-GREASED baking sheet.

(to save clean up time, cover the baking sheet with aluminum foil before baking) 

Cook for about 15 minutes or until the meatballs are lightly browned on the top. Remove from sheet and place on a paper towel covered plate. 

Spaghetti & Sauce: 

INGREDIENTS
Half a package of uncooked spaghetti
1/2 Jar of your favorite sauce
3tbs of parmesan
1tbs pepper
1/2tbs onion powder
Salt to taste
1/2 cheese of choice

While waiting for those meatballs to bake, boil water with a dash of salt and olive oil in a medium sized pot for the pasta. If you wait until the water is boiling before adding the spaghetti, it cooks faster and more evenly. Once pasta is at desired tenderness turn off the burner and drain it. Then add the rest of the ingredients and mix it all up! 

After mixing the sauce into the spaghetti throw the meatballs in the pot and mix it together. Cover the main course and let the flavors mesh while you make a deliciously healthy side salad! 

 
Side Salad:

INGREDIENTS
1 cup fresh spinach
1 cup romaine lettuce
1/4 cup fresh cilantro 
1 tomato 
1/2 small white onion 
1/2 tbs lemon juice
1tbs olive oil

Dice the tomato and onions. Chop up the cilantro. Cut the spinach and romaine lettuce into smaller pieces. Finally add all of the ingredients together in a pretty bowl and serve along side the spaghetti.


Now the only thing you have to worry about is what movie to watch and of course what to wear to WOW your date ;)  

Thursday, March 12, 2015

What Movies Make You Think

Everyday, millions of people watch millions of movies, all around the world. The film industry has one of the biggest influences on society. I mean, who doesn't love a good movie, right? 

What most people do not realize however, is just how much their love of silver screen classics has molded their frame of mind and view of life. 

Through this popular form of mass communication, any kind of behavior or idea can be implemented. This is where we get our ideas about romance and love, gender roles, and even acceptable human interactions. The cult classic Mean Girls, for example, led us to believe that emotional bullying in an intolerable act that will have negative effects on everyone involved, including the bullies. While the Disney animated feature Mulan, taught young girls everywhere that you do not have to be a boy to be a hero. 


Public displays of affection became popular because of the way romance was portrayed in early cinema in the mid to late 60's. Not only that, but because of films like Rebel Without a Cause youths began to question the very idea of happiness and began to pull away from the roles society had pushed on them.

Unfortunately, not all films share the same positive outlook of life. Movies like Jaws, which was meant to entertain, inspired an entire country's irrational fear of sharks. On the other hand, many real underground fight clubs sprouted shortly after the release of David Fincher's critically acclaimed film Fight Club.


Many studies show that watching increasingly violent films can desensitize the mind to real life violence. Meaning that we find blood, gore, and aggression more acceptable, which is UNACCEPTABLE! (pardon the redundancy)

Though is sounds silly, many people let Hollywood dictate how they live their lives. In many cases, instead of movies portraying reality, reality portrays movies. Among the most tragic examples of this is the death of young Mickey Culpepper, who lost his life at the age of 23 by playing Russian Roulette with friends shortly after watching the film The Deer Hunter.

I am not saying that movies kill people. They DO NOT!

The real danger posed by the film industry is that people are no longer thinking for themselves. Instead of provoking thought, films are implanting thoughts. It seems like now they tell us what to wear, who to love, what to buy, where to eat, how to interact with one another, and even how we should be having sex! 


ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

Movies are meant to inform and entertain, NOT to influence and manipulate. 

The next time you sit down to watch the latest box office hit, don't just consider how it makes you feel, be aware of WHAT IT IS MAKING YOU THINK.
 

Monday, March 9, 2015

3 Hacks to Have a Better Monday

Many people have one thing in common; they hate Mondays. This early day of the week is dreaded by almost everybody. It is said to be the start of the mundane routines and tasks of daily life, school, work, etc. 

 happy monday dog

Many people have a negative frame of mind when it comes to this day. By changing how we perceive Mondays we can all come to enjoy them more. Changing a mindset is not always easy, but these 3 easy Monday hacks will make the transition seamless!
 

1. Do something nice for someone else: Make it your mission to find one favor you can do for another person where you are receiving nothing in return. It could be anything from buying a homeless person a bottle of water to planning a nice surprise dinner for your significant other. Being kind to others for no reason is scientifically proven to make you feel better! Don't believe me? Google it! 

2. List 5 things that you are grateful for: If you already do this you are ahead of the game! For the rest of us, take the time right after we wake up to say "thank you" for a few of the things we normally take for granted. If you're drawing a blank, you can start with your bed and your beautiful smile! =D

3. Do one thing differently: Change up your daily routine a little! Shake up your day! Make yourself  a new food for lunch, or better yet set up a lunch date! Do you hair differently, where a bright new color; if you really want to get crazy, go to a movie after lunch!


There is usually nothing to look forward to on a Monday, but I think it's time we take it back and turn it into an early Friday!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Throw Back Thursday!

Best friends since day 1! I can't believe it's been almost 4 years!!

Now that's a throwback!





PROM 2011!!
 I wonder if I still fit in this dress...



Sexy, wonderful man!

Does this little guy look familiar?!  
Hint: It's Nico!



Oh how time flies...