Category Archives: Daily Motivation

8/22 – What. A. Day. Just one of those “rumble strip” kind of days…

Ever have one of those days where somehow you hit the rumble strip and just can’t manage to get off it?

Holy Crap – that was today. I’ve been rumblin’ and bumblin’ all day and I don’t see an end in sight.

Let me just get the typical updates out of the way. I didn’t exercise, and I didn’t eat right. But at least I had my coffee at a normal hour (all I can ask for anymore). Coffee sets the tone for how I handle the day and today, I wouldn’t say is one of the best days I’ve ever had. But I “handled” today. I took care of what was necessary to move along. And get today over with. I tried to follow my advice and make the most of it.

There’s really no point in going over all of the details but a small insight is that someone close to me and my company had to abruptly leave. While they gave us all of the details that they didn’t have to share, I felt a deep sense of sadness, and my heart was open and aching. My compassion for them were beyond words.

The lesson I think I learned today is that although you never really know someone deep down, all you really need to know is if their heart is in the right place now.

Granted, we all make mistakes, and some of us make mistakes with grave consequences, but we are all human. And humans do stupid things from time to time. Sometimes we get confused with helping someone when we are actually hurting them. But is any sin truly greater than the other? What God teaches us is that there is a perfect balance of living where we can all reach a level of happiness that is enough for us. Where we won’t need the things that don’t matter. Where all we need is the simple love from one another. Where His love is enough. But what if we can’t have that basic need of having someone to love? Or someone to love us back? What if our heart tells us one thing and our mind tells us another? How do we grow out of it? How do we triumph over  the landmines set in front of us to make us fail? As humans we are going to fail. We are going to falter. We are going to do things that we “can’t believe” we are doing.

Making the “next” right decision is hard, but honest and authentic love and support is what they need in times like these. I care for this individual and the next adventure in their life. I pray for them, for God to protect them, because they meant a lot to me.

The rumble continues…

I tend to approach everything in business as either an strength, weakness, opportunity or a threat. Details are details. What is the big picture? What is the vision? I’ll do whatever I need to do to get from A to B. But sometimes if I don’t know what the big picture is, I might not find it.

Because of late, business has been a rumble strip and a half – as we have lost a few people recently, so my staffing is low. Although our production has decreased, we are still steadfast in the goals we set out to do.

A great line from Rocky 12 or whatever the last one was, went like this, “The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place. It will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me or nobody is going to hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you’re hit, it is about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward, how much can you take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”

I find this quote very inspiring because the ones who survive are the ones who can keep getting punched in the face, stand back up and be ready for the next one. All the while knowing that the worst is yet to come. A man wiser than me, one of my old bosses that I had a meaningful relationship with, who felt like a mentor in some ways, always told me that as long as we are still moving, we will be ok. It’s the ones who stand still who will fall.

I believe as a fully bootstrapped company, we’ve overcome so many things, and we’ve learned a lot along the way. We’ve recorded our mistakes, and we’ve seized opportunities as they came. Most importantly, we have loved and cared for everyone to some degree who has crossed our path, those whom had chosen to be a part of our team, and this is the “Giving Back” part. Treat people with respect and genuinely care for them as a fragile relationship that need a kind and honest heart, and no matter how hard it gets for you, they will pour themselves to help because you’ve already done it for them.

The world is full of sunshine and rainbows. It’s a magical land full of romance and adventures.






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Why love half-way?

As soon as I recovered from that last post – I immediately went back to Vegas a week later. Saw an opportunity to attend the MAGIC Market Show – which is a fashion industry show for all you newbies, me included. This time, I went alone. It was a good trip, so to say.

Before I left I thought long a hard about how stressful the show before was, and how much stress was put on my digestive system. Mainly because we ate at 11pm at night most nights…or perhaps, the fact that we are sooo hungry that we gorged each meal, or perhaps the self-inflicted pressure of “if we hurry, we’ll get through x number of booths today”. Of course all of this is just part of traveling for work. Thus the need to relax and prepare beforehand.

I’ve discovered a list of traveling pet peeves:

  • I don’t like to RUSH – if I can avoid it at all costs, I will
  • I like to plan my time out for majority of the day, and plan time for “anything goes” so I don’t have to RUSH
  • I need scheduled meal times – so my digestive system isn’t bombarded with food it’s not used to or so much at once, aka RUSHING TO EAT
  • I don’t want to RUN to get anywhere because we have to RUSH
  • I need my coffee every morning at a normal morning hour, not at 2pm
  • My normal speed is still pretty fast. I’m not a turtle.

For this trip, I wanted to do it because it was a chance to see how I’d do on my own. I must say, I do just fine. Better than I expected. I learned the roads and became an expert on the Vegas side-road system. I avoided the strip at all costs. I learned how to get around and also discovered my favorite locale even more: Chinatown.

I had a chance to eat Pho twice on 2 nights. Tried 2 different places. It was fantastic at both places. I also had a silk salad which is vermicelli, ground chicken, seafood, and lettuce, carrot, cucumber, mint, basil, etc. Soooo delicious.

This weekend, an old colleague of mine was in town for work. It was his first time there, so I had a chance to show him the slower pace of Vegas a bit. It was nice to catch up. Can’t believe it’s been 7 years since we both graduated college.

We did a few things together, but mostly learned about each others personal lives, professional lives, and aspirations. It was really nice to know that college had an impact on others the same way it did for me. I had a great college experience and must say that it did prepare me in many ways. I was definitely one of those bright-eyed and hopeful kids who wanted to set out to make a difference in some way. But was very disappointed when I got into the real world. I did learn to cope with it, and from my experience in the fraternity that I belonged to – “Your experience is only as good as you make it.”

And that’s how I’ve lived my life….how could I make today better than yesterday? How could I make the most of this moment? Did I love deeply? Learn greatly? Smile unabashedly? And did I live honestly?

Sometimes, I hurt uncontrollably, but I think it’s because I’ve got a big heart and sometimes it’s just downright mushy. I can’t help it. I enjoy my fairytale, my magical land of hopeless romance. Why be alive if you can’t feel it? Why love half-way? It feels amazing to be embraced! We need more affection in this world and a deeper more meaningful connection.

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Reflect & Recover from this insane thing called, Life :)

Part of a healthy & fit life is to squeeze in recovery times and usually those are called “vacations”. I can’t speak for everyone else and offer advice for ways you can recover from the insanity of your life, but I can paint a picture of how it looks like on my end.

The insanity of my life:
I hate revealing what I do for a living, because my work life is still rather private to me. But in a snapshot, I’m a partner in an internet-retail business that operates several websites. Part of the insanity of my life, is feeling like I’m being pulled in a million directions from every department, and I have 2 million projects going at all times…I’m sure many of us feel the same way. I must confess, I have the luxury of throwing my hands in the air when it gets too insane, and no one dies when I need to hide under my covers for a day. Unlike my husband’s profession, if he doesn’t make it to work, people die. But the insanity of my life comes from inside me – I’m a person who needs constant change, constant interaction, constant inspiration, and I guess despite how much I need all of those things, I’m constantly bored. Thus, the need for a recovery vacation isn’t always for “recovery” but instead a need to feel inspired to do it again the next day.

My driving forces:
I’m motivated by success, passion, small things that become big things, love, strong bonds, and a variety of positive life experiences. I grew up with nothing but the love and family bond from my parents. It was just 4 of us, and no matter how hard it became, we always made it work, and the things that don’t matter, just didn’t matter. I was raised to not care about money, and that all you need in this life is a place to sleep, food to eat, clothes to wear (and it didn’t matter where it was from) and an indestructible family bond, because no one will ever love you as much as your family. My core values include tight knit bonds at home and at work. I have an amazing set of friends who are always there to inspire & encourage me in all my endeavors…

Every year I reflect on how many things I accomplished, and I list everything that I can think of, big or small, because I believe that we’ll never know how awesome or how strong we are until we get the chance to see everything on paper.

Living a fulfilled life is hard work. Just like marriage, being a parent, running a business, being an employer – you want to do it to the best you possibly can, it’s all an incredible amount of hard work to juggle every aspect and to stay sane. BUT this is a FULFILLED LIFE.

I feel truly blessed every day that I get to go to work and hang out with people who are thrive in seeing small things become big things and see them perform each day with passion in their eyes.

My recovery potion:It’s not really a potion but more of a way of life that helps ground me and maintains that fervor for success, passion & more. I like to take small, short, quick vacations and usually with my husband or my business partner who also happens to be my best friend and partner in crime.

My latest travel adventures include a pre-show trip to Lake Havasu. We had to go to a retail tradeshow in Las Vegas for roughly 6 days, but included a quick trip to Lake Havasu to pretty much relax yet get ourselves acclimated to the tradeshow aches and pains.

Typically, at shows, we are walking from 8:30am to 6-7pm. Walking on concrete for 8+ hours KILLS your lower back, hips, feet, calves, etc. It’s also hard on your digestive system, because we are eating pretty much garbage because that’s the only type of food available at these things, and we are hurrying to eat it so that we may get back to work. My stomach has been upset the entire time, I constantly feel bloated, etc.

But the pre-show trip usually consists of the ability to sleep in a couple of days before hand, light “office time”, good meals, and an exhaustive hike or activity of some sort. The exhaustion prepares our bodies to accept the aches and pains during the show. It’s kind of like running 30 miles and putting your body through what it would feel like when it’s time to run that first marathon. Acclimating the body is half the battle of dealing with it. The body will kick out inefficiencies and prepare for the pain.

Our Havasu trip consisted of a long hike through slot canyons with ridgeline views of the lake, and an incredible dip in a cove while swimming with a few ducks. It was an incredible time to unwind, yet exhaust ourselves. One of my favorite things is flooding my eyes with incredible mental photographs of the beauty of the desert. I confessed my love affair with the desert, and explained how it has a burning prickly spot in my heart, because I’ve just about had a heat stroke from that hike, and I pricked my finger somehow from a cactus.

It’s an incredible landscape and I feel so loved by it. My next adventure will take place in Maine in just a few short weeks. I can’t wait to share it.















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Travel Adventure!

I’m a travel-aholic! Found a journal that I just had to get. It hits a nerve with every one of these quotes sporadically spread throughout the pages.

Can’t wait to share my next batch of adventures!





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Men’s Health Urbanathlon

I considered doing the Urbanathlon in Chicago in October. My only hesitation is I wonder if it’s more intense than I can handle? Probably not.

Here’s the training guide: It’s goal is to get you up to speed with your running, and then throw in some obstacles to get you to react quicker while running at full speed. I’m a little nervous about this because it is not a “happy to participate” event. You can not move on to the next obstacle until you complete it.

Geez, I thought the Tough Mudder was a least fun and a “happy to be here” event…now this one requires me to TRY to do well? I may have to really train for this. So here’s the obstacles list:

Monkey Bars: Easy – Medium

Tires: Easy

Hurdles: Medium – Yea I could potentially have a problem with this. At only 5’2″, I’m at a slight disadvantage.

There’s more obstacles, but most of them are so easy-looking like crawling under a car, cargo net over a bus, running up the stadium stairs, etc. I think where I will struggle is the distance. It’s about 13 miles in length with obstacles in between. Means my stamina and endurance will need to kick into high gear and not give up on me.

Would be a fun event to do. I’d be up for it! Just means I need to start training asap.

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Don’t give up – surrender!

If there is any magic in this world...

water flow river
Sometimes all the love I ever felt, all the happiness I ever lived, all the wonderful things I’ve ever seen and all the amazing people I ever met, ALL come back to me unannounced, unexpected, uninvited and I feel life bursting inside me, and I know I need to STOP, I need to run and find a patch of grass and lay in it, lay there, forget the world and BREATH, and LIVE!!!! I want to melt, and let the world kiss me, and let the moment get to the most raw and tender spot in my heart until I cannot help but surrender, until I cannot help but open and love! And flow with it!

There is no desperation in my surrender, there is no giving up, there is no apathy, or laissez-faire, there is only inspiration and hope and there are only open doors, only countless possibilities instead…

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Suck it Up BUTTERCUP :)

Wow! This tank is what I feel when someone decides to whine and make excuses. I just want to tell them to shove it, and keep going. I went to a race recently and saw someone wearing this one in baby blue, and I started looking for it online. Found it at for $25!

Well, recently after watching the entire Rocky series and Million Dollar Baby, my husband asked me “If you were to become a boxer or UFC fighter, what would your “nickname” be?” Completely not listening, I didn’t realize he was trying to figure out my weight class and how to announce my name and what song I’d want to walk out to. He caught me in a busy moment, while I was listening to Carolina Beach Radio on Pandora, and probably while I was cleaning the house or something, so I just gave him a quick answer and said “I don’t know! Buttercup!”  This probably came from when Build Me Up Buttercup just ended. So then he proceeded to announce my vicious boxer name…..

“Introducing first…. from the red corner. Weighing in at 118 pounds… she hails from middle of nowhere of TN. She is, the contender for the Super Fly Weight Class Championship, Vantha “Buttercup” Emmmmmbbbbrrrryyyyyyy!”

So there, now you know the real reason why I am in love with this tank. It’s my attitude when it comes to working out, and not as obnoxious as other crossfit apparel.

You can purchase this burnout screen-printed tank for $25 at! Can’t wait til mine comes in!!!!!!
Suck it Up Buttercup!

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by | July 17, 2013 · 9:53 pm

January 2013 Progress photo

Oh god this is so embarrassing! I just got thru a hard workout earlier in that day. So I was flexing. I look at those pictures now and I’m not happy with them at all and all I can think about is how I can do better. Anyways, so long January! I will hopefully drive up enough courage to do another one next month.

Something to remember, I’ve never been this fit (not saying I am super fit) before. Last pic shows me at my chubbiest weight, an unhealthy 150lbs at 5’2″.





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At what point do you say “screw it”?

I need someone else’s opinion.

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Insight: 19 Things To Stop Doing In Your 20’s

My 20’s are coming to an end this year. I came across this list of things to “Stop Doing” in my last few months. I found it enlightening, because I am guilty of many of these especially #3.

I am constantly looking for distractions. Everyday I have a new “thing” that I am working on, just to pass time, or fill some sort of a void that exists inside. I can’t stand that as much as I hate temporariness, that everything I do is just that – “fleeting moments”, where it’s all temporary desires and accomplishments.

What I’ve figured out is that, life isn’t about distractions – it’s interaction with people and the opportunity to change someones life by just being who you are with a reciprocating relationship where the only purpose is the joy of being in someone’s company.

There is no telling many people have crossed our lives that made a difference, regardless of how small…even if they made us smile a little from a nice compliment – that event was meant to happen. They were supposed to cross your path at that very moment.

I truly believe in fate, and that things happen because they are meant to be. Life is a chance to experience things that other species can not. We are human and we are meant to make mistakes, but it’s ok. Just learn from it, and make it better next time.

Anyway, below is an article I found, about things I should stop doing in my 20’s. However, I think we do all of those things while we’re young so we can become selfless when we get older.


19 Things To Stop Doing In Your 20’s

OCT. 23, 2012

1. Stop placing all the blame on other people for how they interact with you. To an extent, people treat you the way you want to be treated. A lot of social behavior is cause and effect. Take responsibility for (accept) the fact that you are the only constant variable in your equation.

2. Stop being lazy by being constantly “busy.” It’s easy to be busy. It justifies never having enough time to clean, cook for yourself, go out with friends, meet new people. Realize that every time you give in to your ‘busyness,’ it’s you who’s making the decision, not the demands of your job.

3. Stop seeking out distractions. You will always be able to find them.

4. Stop trying to get away with work that’s “good enough.” People notice when “good enough” is how you approach your job. Usually these people will be the same who have the power to promote you, offer you a health insurance plan, and give you more money. They will take your approach into consideration when thinking about you for a raise.

5. Stop allowing yourself to be so comfortable all the time. Coming up with a list of reasons to procrastinate risky, innovative decisions offers more short-term gratification than not procrastinating. But when you stop procrastinating to make a drastic change, your list of reasons to procrastinate becomes a list of ideas about how to better navigate the risk you’re taking.

6. Stop identifying yourself as a cliche and start treating yourself as an individual. Constantly checking your life against a prewritten narrative or story of how things “should” be is a bought-into way of life. It’s sort of like renting your identity. It isn’t you. You are more nuanced than the narrative you try to fit yourself into, more complex than the story that “should” be happening.

7. Stop expecting people to be better than they were in high school — learn how to deal with it instead. Just because you’re out of high school doesn’t mean you’re out of high school. There will always be people in your life who want what you have, are threatened by who you are, and will ridicule you for doing something that threatens how they see their position in the world.

8. Stop being stingy. If you really care about something, spend your money on it. There is often a notion that you are saving for something. Either clarify what that thing is or start spending your money on things that are important to you. Spend money on road trips. Spend money on healthy food. Spend money on opportunities. Spend money on things you’ll keep.

9. Stop treating errands as burdens. Instead, use them as time to focus on doing one thing, and doing it right. Errands and chores are essentially rote tasks that allow you time to think. They function to get you away from your phone, the internet, and other distractions. Focus and attention span are difficult things to maintain when you’re focused and attentive on X amount of things at any given moment.

10. Stop blaming yourself for being human. You’re fine. Having a little anxiety is fine. Being scared is fine. Your secrets are fine. You’re well-meaning. You’re intelligent. You’re blowing it out of proportion. You’re fine.

11. Stop ignoring the fact that other people have unique perspectives and positions. Start approaching people more thoughtfully. People will appreciate you for deliberately trying to conceive their own perspective and position in the world. It not only creates a basis for empathy and respect, it also primes people to be more open and generous with you.

12. Stop seeking approval so hard. Approach people with the belief that you’re a good person. It’s normal to want the people around you to like you. But it becomes a self-imposed burden when almost all your behavior toward certain people is designed to constantly reassure you of their approval.

13. Stop considering the same things you’ve always done as the only options there are. It’s unlikely that one of the things you’ll regret when you’re older is not having consumed enough beer in your 20s, or not having bought enough $5 lattes, or not having gone out to brunch enough times, or not having spent enough time on the internet. Fear of missing out is a real, toxic thing. You’ve figured out drinking and going out. You’ve experimented enough. You’ve gotten your fill of internet memes. Figure something else out.

14. Stop rejecting the potential to feel pain. Suffering is a universal constant for sentient beings. It is not unnatural to suffer. Being in a constant state of suffering is bad. But it is often hard to appreciate happiness when there’s nothing to compare it to. Rejecting the potential to suffer is unsustainable and unrealistic.

15. Stop approaching adverse situations with anger and frustration. You will always deal with people who want things that seem counter to your interests. There will always be people who threaten to prevent you from getting what you want by trying to get what they want. This is naturally frustrating. Realize that the person you’re dealing with is in the same position as you — by seeking out your own interests, you threaten to thwart theirs. It isn’t personal — you’re both just focused on getting different things that happen to seem mutually exclusive. Approach situations like these with reason. Be calm. Don’t start off mad, it’ll only make things more tense.

16. Stop meeting anger with anger. People will make you mad. Your reaction to this might be to try and make them mad. This is something of a first-order reaction. That is, it isn’t very thoughtful — it may be the first thing you’re inclined to do. Try to suppress this reaction. Be thoughtful. Imagine your response said aloud before you say it. If you don’t have to respond immediately, don’t.

17. Stop agreeing to do things that you know you’ll never actually do. It doesn’t help anyone. To a certain extent, it’s a social norm to be granted a ‘free pass’ when you don’t do something for someone that you said you were going to do. People notice when you don’t follow through, though, especially if it’s above 50% of the time.

18. Stop ‘buying’ things you know you’ll throw away. Invest in friendships that aren’t parasitic. Spend your time on things that aren’t distractions. Put your stock in fleeting opportunity. Focus on the important.

19. Stop being afraid.

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