How to Create Beautiful Flat lays

PhotoStories, Thoughts

A flat lay is when you photograph items from directly above using objects (most of the time) to tell a story, display a brand, or both and more. Whether for Instagram or for your blog, good flat lays are very appealing. Here are 4 tips to creating beautiful ones:

  1. Choose a neutral background

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You can arrange your items on a white sheet of paper/cardboard/sheet etc. Or you can pick a background that is darker or in my case a wooden background. The above picture was taken using my patio’s wooden floors. You can also pick a background that has a neutral pattern like I have done below. I have used different sheets I bought from Michael’s for a couple of dimes and paired them together.

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2. Pay attention to the lighting/Orientation

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Natural light is better to take flat lays so take your picture close to a window maybe or in a well-lit room in your home. Walk around to find the best lighting for your flat lay. The one above was still taken on my patio since natural light filters in. Make sure that your phone or camera is parallel to the surface.  Stand on a chair if you have to. (which I did to take those). If you are taking the flat lay for Instagram, Make sure you use the square option on your phone camera. If it is on your camera, you can do like I do by taking the photo as wide as you can so you can crop later if necessary.

3.  Make it Pretty

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Use your items in a way that looks good. Pair different items together while styling them in a way that is appealing. Use the way your orient your items along with which ones you  choose to pair. Do you want the focus to be in the center? top or bottom? Arrange your items accordingly. You can also choose to add a pop of color

4. Make a Theme/Create a Story

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Flat Lays tell stories. The items that you choose to pair tell the person seeing it what is it you wanted to convey. Can you come up with themes for the above picture? Comment them below.

Love,

Lori

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What Camera Should I Buy?

Thoughts

                       This is probably the question people ask me the most on social media besides what camera do you use. Truth is, it does not matter as much as you think. Spending time trying to figure out what camera to get is a complete waste, IF time is not spent to further your knowledge in the basics of photography/videography  etc. When I first started my photography business, I had a cheap camera. I had a basic camera. No fancy lenses or fancy equipments.  I still managed to shoot engagements/ graduation/landscapes etc. with happy customers. Yes,  a professional camera has saved me time in processing, but none of that would have mattered if I had not taken the time to learn and develop a technique for myself. It is a learning process and a work in progress. I am also glad I did not have a professional camera to start with because it helped me learn the basics of photography and helped me figure out a lot of things using DIY methods.

I took these photos a while back. When I first started to consider venturing into photography as a business, and not as a hobby as it started when I was a child.

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Disappearing glass. No edits. 2012

 

Factors

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 There are some factors to consider though. Finding a camera that suits you or that you feel comfortable with is also important. I have very small hands for example so I need a camera that gives me a good grip regardless of how big it is. So I think a camera that is comfortable to you should be a factor.

A second factor would be the price. Buy something you can afford. Especially if you are a beginner that intends to make a business out of it down the line. Buy something you can afford and learn on. Later on when your business starts developing, you can upgrade your gear. I know people who spent a lot of money on cameras that they never ended up using because they didn’t/couldn’t figure it out, or because they were not sure it was a passion of theirs to begin with. Don’t break your bank account for something you are not one hundred percent sure of.

What you are using the camera for is also an important factor. If you are using it manly for videography or manly for photography, there are cameras tailored to work best in each or in both. This Post gives good insight about cameras that are well suited for videos  in different price ranges.

Now my advice to you is buy what you can afford. If you can afford a professional camera right away, good! If you can’t, don’t worry about it too much for now. Buy a decent one (Canon and Nikon cameras are usually the go to although there are others out there just as good like Fujifilm and Olympus) that is tailored to your needs, and spend time learning the basics and developing your technique. Later on, you can always upgrade your gear. At the end of the day, that is what makes the difference between the shots you take versus the ones someone else takes: Not the camera or the equipments used, but you and how you see things!

Love,

Lori

 

When The Shoe Does Not Fit

Thoughts

                      I walked into a store a few years back and saw these beautiful wedges. If you know me, you know heels aren’t usually my thing although I DO love them, I just always pick comfort over wearing them. I can do with wedges though! you know they are comfortable not as much of a pain as regular heels. Anyway, I saw them and instantly thought I wanted them. I wear size 6 in sandals and 7 in regular shoes, but we all know how sizing can sometimes not be accurate. I looked at the size of the wedges and realized they were a 6. I thought: “I am a size 6!” (except this wasn’t a pair of sandals). I tried them on anyway and they were super tight. They looked good on my feet, but super extra tight.   To be honest, they didn’t fit. I thought well I will make them work. I will break them in in no time and took them home.  Believe or not I didn’t only do this with shoes back then.

This behavior was all over my relationships with friends or boyfriend. I had this thing where I would realize that someone wasn’t actually meant to stay in my life or just meant to be there and I would hold on to them thinking I would/could make it work. This went on in almost every relationship I had to the point where I would bend myself backwards to “make things work” with people not meant for me to begin with.

Not loving myself and not knowing my worth in God, made me settle to trying to shape myself to fit people into my life rather than allowing the right people who fit into my life to come to me and stay. I was so bound on making shoes that weren’t meant for me fit that I was loosing sight of the ones God had just for me.

How Has This Affected My Relationships?

I wasn’t being One hundred percent myself making it easier for me to be confused about who genuinely cares and who doesn’t. As a result, it was actually hard to have meaningful friendships not based on just hanging out and joking or doing stuffs together. At the end of the day, not one of my “friends” actually knew who I was aside from things I do or superficial characteristics like “Being a nice person” or a helpful person. I was a people pleaser. I couldn’t say no without feeling bad about it sometimes despite my own well being. There is a fine line between being selfless and being a people pleaser. Selflessness comes from a place of love and service while being a people pleaser tends to come from not owning who you are.

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How  Has This Changed?

I wasn’t liking where my life was headed with this and it took time for me to actually really love myself and to own who I am. Knowing who you are makes you realize that you are not for everyone and that everyone is not meant to be in your life. And that is totally okay. Knowing myself and owning it made me not willing to make anything that wasn’t for me fit anymore. I grasped my identity in Christ and in society which led to me knowing what I want, who I want to be, and who God created me to be. That led to me not settling for anything or anyone less than what/who was meant for me. 

As a result, I have made meaningful relationships with people I truly cared about and people who genuinely cared about me. I also was willing to let anyone or anything that was not good for me go and it was totally okay with me. I am okay with saying no because I only say yes if I am not at the same time saying no to myself. I was confident in God and true to myself, beliefs, and morals. I learned to truly be selfless how God intended me while being myself.

Honestly, I prayed about it a lot. I realized so many times how it breaks God’s heart knowing that He made me and that I was not willing to be who He created me to be. I was not willing to realize whose daughter I was. God sent me people, answers, and the realization of His love through His word to help me through this. I am forever grateful.

Even though I knew in theory about all those things that God says about me and how much He loves me, I had to relearn them and fully grasp what they meant. God has made us in His image. He has redeemed us. He loves us. We can either create a temporary identity for ourselves or we can claim the eternal identity that is found in Christ.  

I am sharing this because if this at some point was/is also you, know that you are enough just for being yourself because you are “fearfully and wonderfully made”.  Find strength in God and in His word. Bring Him your worries so he may show you the way to go. You are so beautiful and loved beyond what you can possibly imagine! So whether it comes to shoes, things, people, learn to accept what is yours and what fits you and let go of what doesn’t. The unnecessary pain you get from forcing things is not worth it.

Here are some verses that I found helpful:

“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”- Psalm 139: 13-14

Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.”- Luke 12:7

“Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”- Genesis 1:26

Love,

Lori

 

 

Haiti Changed Me

Thoughts, Travel, Uncategorized

Last week, a group of 63 people (me included) travelled to Cap Haitian, Haiti on a mission trip to partner with the Haitian people through sustainable development. Sustainable development promotes sharing knowledge and things that will last rather than giving them handouts. I participated in youth leadership development classes/presentations, and activities with everyone. Health education and Bible study were also offered.  I didn’t think that this experience would touch me as much as it did. Haiti changed me, and here’s 5 reasons why:

  1. They know what is best for them
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Photo captured by yours truly during Youth Leadership Presentation

In the past, I would often talk about people who come to Haiti and bring Haitians their worn out clothes or stuffs, and I would talk about how that is not helping. In my head though, I would think that the people take it because they do not know what is best for themselves. I was wrong. Hearing a 10-year-old tell me how handouts don’t really do much for the country because they are just temporary blew my mind. He proceeded to talk about the importance of education in Haiti and how he is willing to learn more so he can become a doctor down the road. Haitians do not want handouts. They want to be educated to be able to help themselves. I have heard these statements over and over from children and from adults all throughout the trip and it really changed my perspective of thinking that they don’t know best. They do.

2. They are not poor

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Photo captured by yours truly featuring Brittany, Matthew, Brandi and the kids

Our theme verse was Joshua 1:9 ” Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Haitians embody this verse so well. I have heard women tell me of their daily lives while always adding at the end that God is good. When I think of all the time I got discouraged by little things, I felt ashamed. Haitians have so much faith. So much Love for the Lord, and more importantly so much joy in His promises. They were always ready to learn, sing, to be happy, and to have a good time which kept me going no matter how tired I could have been. They live the Gospel out loud and showed me a representation of who God truly is every single day I spent with them. I have met 10-year-old children who knew so much about what the country needs and about life in general. They are so intelligent. So Strong. So resilient. So loving. So joyous. And So Faithful to God. I have learned way more from them than they probably learned from me and I am grateful.

3. I have gained a family 

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Photo Captured by Jordan Walker

 

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Photo captured by Rachel featuring me, Heather, Erica, Nara and her sister, Losandy and her friend.

Being able to share this experience with my Haitian people and with a team who is so fueled by an incredible love for God made all the difference. I have learned something from each and every one of my team member. I admire their passion for service and their love for the Haitian people. You would think that 63 people on a team would be total chaos, but not at all. I admire each and every single one of their hearts for the Lord and this would not have been the same without them.

4. My Country is Beautiful. 

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Photo Captured by Tour guide on iPhone

I had the chance to visit the “Citadelle” while I was there and was it an experience! A masterpiece of engineering built by ex-slaves still standing to this day. Can I reiterate how intelligent and strong Haitians are? It was so empowering walking up there. For all the time that I have felt that I wasn’t enough, that I wasn’t strong enough or smart enough or capable enough. I was reminded of where I come from, of whom my ancestors are and of what they were capable of. I was reminded that I am their great (x100) daughter and I am not doing this for myself.

5. God confirmed my Role in all of this

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Photo captured by yours truly featuring Kate Fletcher

We walked to a prayer mountain to pray. The view was beautiful and while I stared at it, I could not stop crying. All I could hear and see was God’s love for the Haitians and God’s love for this very place. While sitting up there, all I could say in my head was: thank you for showing me. Thank you for showing me. I saw that analogy of a group of people stuck somewhere, unable to free themselves or to move forward. Then God blesses one of them, then two, then three etc. so that they are able to go out in the world to come back and help their brothers and sisters, but most of them don’t come back. Yet God keeps trying over and over. I felt that I was one of these people who God blessed in order to do something positive for the country that birthed me. I don’t remember what I prayed for, must have been all the tears, but I did feel lighter and more hopeful when I walked down that mountain.

 

I hope this motivates you into visiting Haiti or partnering with the people of Haiti. For more information about sustainable development please visit projectsforhaiti.org

Love,

Lori

 

All photos are mine unless stated otherwise. 

 

Being a Wallflower

Thoughts

When I was in middle school and high school, I always admired people who weren’t afraid to speak to strangers; people who weren’t shy because I always figured that I could have been more of this and of that if I wasn’t so shy. I am an introverted person and I relied on that so much that I would tell myself that I didn’t say what I think because I am just reserved. I then realized that there is a fine line between being reserved and being afraid to speak.

There is nothing wrong with being an introvert, but using that as an excuse to give in to fear is where the wrong begins. Just like any other introvert, I do enjoy alone time and despise small talks for too long. I also do need time to recover from exhausting social activities and I do have a small group of people that aren’t exhausting to me. But the thing is, I was also afraid of putting myself out there by initiating conversations or by speaking in public or anything related to me getting out of my comfort zone and this to me was all kind of wrongs because fear is not of God. Fear is not something that I wanted to allow to paralyze me. 

I remember that I had no problem standing in front of an audience to give presentations but that’s because I had no choice. My grades depended on it. Regardless of stress, I would push myself so that I not only give the presentation as if I wasn’t stressed, but also that I do it very well because I cared enough about my grades to make myself uncomfortable so that I achieve what I wanted. So, I figured that having motivation enough would help me do what I wasn’t too comfortable doing. They say life happens outside of your comfort zone, gosh is this true!! I started to tell myself how my future depended on me talking to that professor or talking to that person or company etc. Little did I know that doing just that would help me find my voice. Although still a work in progress, I love how God is  leading me with this. 

 I decided to do positive things that I had never done because of fear and next thing you know, I was going places, climbing down caves, climbing mountains, talking to engineers who intimidated me, walking to a certain professor’s office to boldly talk about research and so on. I would repeat to myself constantly that if fear is the ONLY reason for me not to do something then I should definitely do it. I prayed about it too; telling God constantly to give me the courage necessary to go do this or that without necessarily owning or taking it upon myself to move towards what I was praying about. It’s like returning the free will that God gave me to Him telling Him to literally push me to do certain things when in reality, He had given me the courage I asked for since day 1, had I only decided to lift my feet.

Isn’t it funny how we sometimes try to give our free will back to God because we literally want Him to lift us up and make us do certain things or we want Him to place that person on our path? When in reality, He has already answered our prayers by touching the person’s heart so they can be ready to hear us; The problem is, we do not actually go and talk to that person because we often times want God to answer prayers our way instead of His way. So next time you feel afraid to speak or do certain things when you have already prayed about it, remember, sometimes, all it takes is one step forward! 

From one Introvert to another

Love,

Lori

Waking Up On November 9th

Thoughts

November 8th of this year was elections Day in the U.S. Though I did not watch it on TV, I kept a close eye on the live results while studying for an exam I had on the next morning. I stayed up late because of studying and found myself getting more and more nervous as the  results were being updated. I stayed up until the final results were announced, but I was too tired to think about it. But then November 9th came, and I woke up feeling uneasy.

It was very unusual. It felt like the air was a bit heavier and there was some silent tension in the atmosphere and for the first time, I felt unsafe. I went on Facebook a little bit after I woke up (because who doesn’t right?), and I can say that I regretted it. News of racism, riots, and people sharing their disbelief, anger, and disappointment altogether flooded my timeline.I tried to brush the feeling off and told myself I would stay off social media because it was feeding into the fear I was experiencing, but that did not happen.

Emails were sent by the school about either clubs doing get togethers to “stop Trump” or about how the school is doing its best to create a safe atmosphere for everyone and everyone is always welcomed no matter who you are or what you identify with. As I went on with my day,  I felt worried about the future, and how the decisions of the newly elected president would affect my life and the life of pretty much 90 percent of people I know. I also thought about how a vast percentage of people felt the same way and that another percentage of people chose not to understand that. The fact that violating certain principles of morals or simple basic human rights are not deal breakers for some will always be beyond me.  One of my friends shared with me how she felt unsafe now to walk around because of the color of her skin and all I could say was “same”.

Feeling like you don’t belong or feeling like you are not wanted somewhere just because of the body you are born into is not something I could ever get my mind around. One thing I realized though is that giving into fear is never a good thing. Fear is not of God. I know I also saw a lot of posts about not bringing God into this because He did not vote for people. Although this is true and I agree, I still found the day easier to bear once I was reminded of who is in control when it comes to my life and that I do indeed bring God into everything when it comes to me.

All I know is no one should ever have to wake up feeling unsafe in the community they live in regardless of anything. Maybe it was a combination of social media and what I was hearing and reading in the news exponentially escalating a situation, or maybe my feeling unsafe was completely legitimate given the racist misogynistic comments  that were heard all throughout the past months along with people’s reactions. Either way you choose to see it,  whether you are on either side of the spectrum I hope and pray that you know that you are not alone and there are people you can talk to about it, that God is always there (yes you can bring Him into anything), and that you choose love and tolerance over hatred always in everything you do, say, and portray so no one wakes up feeling uneasy because of your actions or “opinions” at any given day.

Love,

Lori

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How I Keep My Prayer Journal

Thoughts

I have been asked about prayer journals since I have published 3 Reasons Why You should keep a Prayer Journal. I know it took forever, but I usually pray before I post anything and if I don’t “feel” it, I will not post it. Whether or not I actually know what I will write about. Anyway, I am sorry it took so long! Let’s get to it.

My prayer journals are usually journals I use to keep track of my growth with God and of my relationship with Him along with my conversations ( prayers) with Him. To be honest, it doesn’t have to be an actual journal in my opinion. It can be on your electronic devices, but I personally like to write and to have a physical journal so that is what I go for. Really, this is all about you and your preferences, but here  is what I include in mine:

  1. The date and even the Time

I didn’t use to do this, but I found it to be very useful to know the exact date and time when I was feeling a certain way or what I was talking to God about. It doesn’t matter that much, but personally I think it’s useful when looking back and realizing how God has been leading me.

 

2. Learned today Section

This is going to sound silly, but I usually write what I have learned on that day or what I have improved or not improved on. I don’t mean on an academic point of view, but about life in general. For example, I may write that today I have learned  or was reminded of the importance of humility and write how I have come to this conclusion. I have found that little things like that go a long way. I would write what God has put in my heart that day and anything that I feel is worth putting on there. That way, I also remember to thank God in my prayers for a particular improvement or pray that He helps me in this particular area so that I may be more like Him. For example, patience is a big thing for me. I have none whatsoever when it comes to certain things; sometimes even little things. So, time and time again I would write that I need to improve on my patience because I felt irritated because of this and that. It is a good way to acknowledge feelings and things that need work. I would then pray to God that He gives me the patience necessary to be able to love a little more like Him every day and that He teaches me how to do so. It is a work in progress, but I am getting there with His help.

 

3. Bible Verses

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I also like to include any bible verses or anything I read that day or that week that spoke to me or that I need some light on. That way, I can remember to ask God to open my heart and mind, and send me His holy spirit so that my mind, heart, and soul can grasp what he wants me to take away from a particular passage. I find this to also be a way to remember and keep in my heart what I have learned from reading a particular book.

 

4.  Prayer

This is my favorite part. I would make sure I read what I previously wrote down so I remember exactly what to thank God for besides the usual millions of things and I would pray about what I need to work on, where I have failed Him etc. I would also give thanks for what I have learned from a particular bible verse or what I need His help understanding.  To me, it is usually a conversation, as personal as it can get. I usually write “Dear God” to begin. This part is all up to you! Just open your heart to your father and be sure that He listens!

 

These are the four things I include in my prayer journal. Since I like to keep things organized, they are indeed in this very order, but as I said before, it is all up to you! I am sharing how I keep mine to maybe give someone else an idea. I hope you found this useful! Let me know in the comments!

 

Love,

 

Lori

Books I think Everyone Should Read (update)

Thoughts

Today is #Nationalbookloversday so I am here for it! If you love to read like I do, this post is for you! I previously posted 8 Books I think Everyone Should Read. If you haven’t already, check it out! This is an updated version or should I say here are 4 more books I think are worth reading:

  1. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

Maybe you’ve seen the movie that was made based on this or maybe you haven’t, but it’s okay because this is the book! Books are always better than movie adaptations in my opinion. This was my favorite movie when I was a child and once I found out that it is actually a book, I had to read it! It was a bit different from the movie as I expected, but I still loved Howl’s character as well as Sophie’s. I don’t want to spoil anything for you, but it’s a feel good fantasy book that will make you dream and laugh. Give it a read and let me know what you think! It sure brought me back to being a child!

2. When God Winks On Love by Squire Rushnell

Although, I am not very certain that I believe in the idea of a soul mate because I haven’t found biblical proof of it, I loved that book. It’s not meant to be a bible because clearly it’s not the Bible, but I loved the stories! I don’t believe in coincidences and this book is just a reinforcement of that. Full of serendipitous  stories and hope! If you are single ( or not) and you are looking for a feel good book that can help you have the patience to wait on our father’s perfect timing and perfect way of doing things, this book is definitely worth a read!

3. The Devil and Miss Prym by Paulo Coelho

I read this one a while back. It is full of life lessons about good versus evil and about the daily struggles we have with our conscience.  It shows the lures of temptations and the courage and faith necessary to overcome them. There are also lots of little stories told by the characters that are eye-opening.  It’s about a man who comes to a small village with the devil following him. He is determined to prove or to find out whether or not humanity is solely good or solely evil, so he makes a deal with the youngest lady in the village. I don’t want to spoil this for you, but it is truly an interesting read.

4. The Great Controversy by Ellen G. White

I hesitated a little putting this one on the list, but if you are a christian, I think you should give it a read. I admit, it is hard to read. When I say hard to read, I mean it is not a fiction book or a short one either, but it gives great insight on religion history, and the controversy that exists between God and Satan. Everyone would mention this book at church or during christian gatherings so I decided to give it a read. I must say that I didn’t regret it and it changed my views on a lot of things. I hope you do try to take your time to give it a go! Maybe God will speak to you through it just as He did me!

 

S.N.: I am pretty sure you can find it for free. I will post the website link once I find it, but for now I only have the Amazon one. 

 

 

I hope you enjoy this short list and do read some of these books. I am currently reading Me before You by  Jojo Moyes. Well I am more like listening to it as I tried giving audio books a chance. I’ll keep you updated on how it went! I am thinking about creating a shared bookshelf where we’d share books or even read them together! Let me know what you think! comment below or say hi at: contact@lorisr.com

Love,

Lori

 

Disclaimer: I just posted the links to these books just in case you were wondering where to find them or where I got them from. I am not associated with any of the authors or sellers or anything. xoxo

 

 

5 Things I learned about Natural Hair

Thoughts

I had completely resolved myself about not posting anything about hair, but oh well. My hair is part of me and part of my lifestyle after all so bear with me. Even if you don’t relate, maybe you have a friend/acquaintance/family member who does so make sure to share!

One of the most common remarks I get when it comes to taking care of my hair is :” woah! it must be hard to take care of!” or I hear my natural haired friends say that ” natural hair is hard to manage/hard to take care of” etc. Well surprisingly (or not), I can’t relate! I always thought my hair was very easy to do and manage! By always I mean when I was the one to take care of my own hair. I don’t know about how my mom and aunt felt about doing my hair lol. It takes me 3 minutes at most to do my hair at night or in the morning ( I know I have timed it). Sure it takes me about half an hour to wash if I am just washing and about an hour at least if I am deep conditioning or doing any kind of treatment , but I guess it’s on how you see things. I see doing my hair as something as natural as brushing my teeth and taking a shower rather than a nuisance or a pain in the butt. So amongst all the opinions about how natural hair is hard to do, well I beg to differ.

August 2016 will make 2 years after my second big chop. While I don’t know my hair type, I hope this helps some curly heads out there. Here are 5 things I learned about natural hair:

  1. Moisturize

Okay I know this is a no brainer, but in the past I had made the mistake of thinking that styling products like curl enhancers moisturize hair. I see some of my friends make the same mistake. Water is the best moisturizer of course, so to moisturize I have realized that leave in conditioners and moisturizers that are water based are best to keep hair moisturized. I also use the LOC method and that keeps my curls moisturized. I saw the LOC method posted on a Facebook hair page and tried it and found that it works wonders for me. I did not come up with it. I’d put the link on here if I remembered the source, but I don’t. If you do, please feel free to comment it below and I’ll update the post. Basically, I put my leave in conditioner followed by an oil ( coconut oil because… life.) and I follow by some type of hair creme and voila! I do make sure I re-moisturize when my curls start to get dry, but they don’t get dry for days when I use this method. Although nowadays, I am using as little product in my hair as possible, (I mostly use water and leave in conditioner now), I still recommend this method. Here’s an unfiltered picture of my hair with no product in it. Maybe you can tell what my hair type is!

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My hair with no product in it

2.  Trim 

I have seen so many of my friends holding on to dead ends just to preserve the length of their hair. What I found out about this is when I need to trim my hair, my ends start getting tangled and I end up losing more hair than necessary when styling or washing. Ends that need to be trimmed create tangles and knots that cause hair to break. I always make sure I mind my ends especially with moisturizing and trimming. Holding on to bad ends won’t make your hair grow longer and stronger. So don’t worry, let go of these bad ends and once they grow back you’ll have healthier hair!

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Another close up unfiltered shot of my hair with no product

3. Massage Your Scalp

If you know me, you know I have a scalp massager and everything lol. I LOVE scalp massages! Even more once I found out that it helps blood flow in your scalp and promotes hair growth. I massage my scalp every night before bed for at least 10 minutes. It feels so good! so what do you have to lose? Give it a try!

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texture shot

4. Find the Right Products

I have struggled with this one. When I did my first big chop, I was a total product junkie! I would buy anything and everything with no harsh chemicals that was for hair. This would all have been wasted money if my brother didn’t help in using all these unnecessary hair products ( Shout out to my homie yo! ). It was bad I tell you! My bathroom was full of things I wasn’t even using because I’d use them a couple of times and not like them so I’d just stop and buy something else. As a result, I never used anything long enough to be able to tell what worked and what didn’t. Plus I was combining brands so I wasn’t able to say whether or not the product genuinely didn’t work for me or if it didn’t work because I used it with some other product. Anyway, long story short, I decided one day to only use the trader joe’s shampoo and conditioner and to stick with one leave in conditioner for at least a month. At the time, I think it was Organix coconut oil leave in. And that worked! I was able to realize that I love trader joe’s conditioner ( I still use it today) and I did like the Organix leave in paired with coconut oil even though I don’t use it anymore. I stopped being a product junkie altogether mostly because my hair LOVES coconut oil and well because I figured out the error of my ways and found the right products for me. Anyway I hope you are not being a product junkie like I was. Your wallet and hair won’t appreciate it.

5. Embrace the Shrinkage

Tough one eh? What I hear most when it comes to how much shrinkage I have is :” woah your hair is quite long! why don’t you stretch them?” Well I don’t because I embrace the shrinkage. Some days I’d have a big fro and other days when the weather decides it, I’d have a small one. I have learned to embrace it. I mean of course yes there are some hairstyles I might want to do that requires less shrinkage than another, but there are also some I wouldn’t be able to do if it wasn’t for shrinkage. Once I let go of the idea that shrinkage was an annoyance, surprisingly enough my hair didn’t shrink as much and combined with my finding the right products and methods, I have had more good hair days than bad ones!

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Welp.

 

I hope this was of some help.Please comment below if you have tips of your own to share, to say hi, or if this helped in any way. I’ll post about what I currently use and hair regimen if you are interested. If not, thank you for reading always.

 

Love

 

Lori

Message me here: contact@lorisr.com

3 Reasons Why You should keep a Prayer Journal

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I have had a prayer journal for as long as I could remember. I was always very fond of writing and I find that writing down my thoughts usually help me keep them on the positive side of the spectrum. I don’t usually journal about events that happened during the day, more like how I felt that day and why. I also write ideas, projects, plans, bible study notes etc. But to be honest, nothing is more satisfying to me than to write my prayers down. I usually write them as letters to my beloved Father and I just love being able to read them over and over. Here are 3 reasons why you should keep a prayer journal.

 

  1. You can keep track of your answered prayers

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One of the best feelings of keeping a prayer journal is being able to look back and read over the prayers and requests that you wrote down before, and realizing today that they have been answered. You see I have realized that it is very easy to forget about our present blessings until we realized that a day before or a year before, the blessings that we are enjoying today were things that we were desperately praying for. On June 21, 2016 I wrote in my prayer journal for God to intervene for me so that I may have an interview with a specific company that I’d rather not name. On Monday June 27th, I was headed to my interview and opened my journal to pray before going. I started reading old prayers and couldn’t help but smile when I came across the one about the interview. On July 5th 2016 at 11:00PM, I wrote in my journal about going to orientation with my brother and having a place to stay and everything planned. On July 7th, 2016, there I was at orientation with my mother and brother with everything planned and taken care of. I could go on and on about this, but I wanted to give recent examples.

 

2.  You can use it to rekindle your hope in God

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Okay I know that sometimes we all lose hope or start doubting God or our relationship with him. Although yes, you should read your Bible and pray about it, but sometimes I don’t even feel like I have the strength to pray. I then open my prayer journal and start reading past prayers and I am reminded of who the god I serve is. I am reminded of my relationship with Him and of how I wouldn’t want to give that away for anything. It is funny that as I am inspired to write this today, I am living this part and reading my prayers over along with the Bible has sure brought the Joy of the Lord back to me.

 

 

3. You are more aware of the relationship you have with God

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I am not saying that I write every single prayer in my prayer journal because I pray multiple times a day. Before I eat, before I drive, before I make a decision etc. And these prayers are usually short ones in the quietness of my heart; But I do reserve one hour in the morning and one hour at night to sit down calmly with my Bible, my highlighters, my prayer journal, and worship songs. I write down my prayers, I bring my thoughts to my Father, my concerns etc. One thing I have realized from doing that is that I am more aware of what goes on between me and God when I keep my journal. I am able to have on concrete paper what I need to work on, what God is doing in me and in my life and in others’ life. Not only am I able to witness them in my life and in others’ life, I am able to look at it happen from another angle by keeping a prayer journal. I find that to be a plus if you are working on bettering your relationship with God.

 

I was inspired to write this today out of nowhere so I hope it inspires and helps someone. How has keeping a prayer journal helped you? If you would like a post about my process for keeping my prayer journal ( how it looks, what I start with, how I pray etc.)  feel free to comment and let me know! Feel free to comment even if you just want to say hi also! 🙂

 

Love,

 

Lori