11 January 2018

A Light In the Dark


This photo might be blurry but that smile is a genuine representation of how I feel on a regular basis. But that wasn’t always the case. If you would have told me three years ago that I would experience true happiness come the summer of 2015, I would have laughed in your face. Back then I never knew that life could be this good, that I could feel a love so strong or experience mutual respect. Sometimes when I think of my past I don’t even consider it a life lived - it was nothing more than an existence. Yes, there were bits and pieces of happiness, but it was never consistent and something always sent me searching down even darker paths.

But in the summer of 2015, everything changed the night that Alex & I re-met. That was when an overwhelming feeling of clarity began to settle into the very fiber of my being. Alex was so different, so sweet and so pure - like white magic. And all those years filled with depression, anxiety, pain, and hurt were no longer a badge of courage. My current situation had morphed into something that I knew I could no longer put up with. I had finally learned that I deserved so much more. That night something within me changed and I made the decision, right then and there, to leave my previous marriage. It was sudden (and shocking to some, I’m sure) but it had taken me so, so long to finally gain that courage and move on.

I still can’t fully explain how my fearlessness went from zero to sixty in less than twenty-four hours, but it did. It was raw and real and urgent. But what I do know is that it was because of Alex, my light in the dark. And my god, how much brighter the light is after the storm...

02 January 2018

Time Passes, Years End [2017 Edition]

I love "end of the year" recaps, unfortunately, I've been preoccupied with life that I forgot to share my recap for 2017. So, with two whole days into 2018, I figured I would share some of my favourite moments from 2017. We spent our new years eve at my sister's fiance's family's h


This year was a crazy, good year for a variety of reasons... Alex and I were married in February and we honeymooned in New Orleans. And our wedding was featured on Rock 'N Roll Bride! We went to MegaCon, which was our second time going to a comic convention. In July we celebrated our two-year dating anniversary in St. Augustine. By the time September rolled around we experienced our first hurricane together and traveled to Indiana and fell in love with the cornfields. For Halloween, we dressed up as our dream characters. We had our first-ever joint birthday celebration and it was a success. And I turned thirty-three and actually am a little stoked about it.

I'm still blown away by the relationship that Alex & I have. It feels so good to go through life with him by my side. To know that I have married my best friend and that we will always be there for each other has made me feel safe and centered. Not a day goes by where I am not smiling and it's all because of Alex. He really is the everything I have ever wanted and needed in my life. Since we make such a great team, we want to add to it. And as some of you might already know, we've decided to start planning for a little one this year. We're completely over the moon about this new venture too!
As for Olive, she's still the sweetest bunny around and the relationship that she has with Alex has really blossomed this year. It's just so sweet to see those two together. Olive is also really good at spending the night at my mom's house now. Which is such a relief, because now we're able to go on long trips without worrying about how she's doing without us. Also, if you'd like to see more photos of Olive, she has her own Instagram account. ;)


For 2018, my goal is to focus on living a more intentional life. I want to be consistently present and conscious of the energy that I put into the world. I really want to use my phone less and focus more on what's going on around me. I want to stop endless scrolling and read or write instead. I want to spend more time making memories and maybe less time documenting just for the sake of documenting. I am such a blogger at heart, so I know that I will still post on here, but I just want to focus more on quality, instead of quantity. I want to take the same approach to our daily lives. At some point this year I plan on going through the majority of our belongings and purging a lot of unnecessary items. I also want to buy less and save more. It seems simple, but I know it will take dedication.

I cannot wait to see what this new year has in store for us!

What happened in your life during 2017 that was your favourite? Do you have any goals for 2018? Let me know in the comments below so we can discuss!

29 December 2017

Essential Oils | The Who, What & Why

Essential oils have always appealed to me. When I first heard about those magical little oils, I knew I had discovered something that I would end up loving. The funny thing is, the first time I bought some essential oils, I was so far off base in terms of quality. Apparently, I hadn't done enough research. You can read about my first journey into essential oils here. Spoiler alert: I started off with some of the worst oils, EVER. After some much-needed knowledge, and with the direction of my sister, I looked into Young Living. And now I feel as though I'm doing essential oils right this time.


My sister has used Young Living oils for a very, very long time. In fact, she used to work at a place that sold them. She's also the main reason why I decided to go ahead and get started with Young Living - I'm happy to say that I'm blown away by their quality. But why did I look into essential oils in the first place? Here's why: I wanted to cut out all of the unnatural chemicals that lurked around our household like cleaners, personal products, etc. And since I was raised to make a conscious effort of what I actually put in my body, I was also interested in finding natural remedies to ailments like headaches, muscle pain, and digestion issues. Just ask Alex, whenever I get a headache he has to pretty much force me to take an Advil. So the idea of using something natural instead really spoke to me. And if you aren't new to essential oils, you know that they can do all that and so much more.

I decided to go ahead and get the premium starter kit from Young Living. Which was really the best bang for my buck. The kit comes with 11 different oils, PLUS a very pretty diffuser and some other goodies too - which is always fun. It was definitely the best route for me because I really wanted to dive into the world of essential oils without going completely overboard moneywise. With the premium starter kit, I actually saved money - which I consider to be a win-win.


Now I do want to take a moment to explain why those first essential oils I got were so bad. Yeah, they were cheap and I thought I was getting a good deal - but I should have known better. The quality of the oils was poor and they actually already had soybean oil in them - omg, why?! Here's the issue: if an oil isn't pure it's essentially worthless. Therefore you have to be very careful about the oils you get. The problem with lesser quality essential oils is that some of them can be altered. So, whenever you buy essential oils you need to look for ones that are unadulterated. Which means that there aren't any additives, extenders, or price reducing ingredients. Nothing except what's left after the distillation process (with ingredients usually listed in its Latin form). When it comes down to it, it's better to spend a little more and get quality oils.

Look at it this way, if an essential oil isn't pure, you aren't going to get any of the therapeutic benefits from it. In fact, if the oils aren't pure you might even get some adverse effects instead. With all that being said, I highly recommend doing your own research. If you're anything like me, you air on the side of skepticism until you can find the information yourself. Honestly, what matters most is finding what's right for you, so please don't let my journey influence yours (or criticize if you chose differently). I'm not here to say that Young Living is the only way to go - but it definitely was for me. There are other good companies out there, like DoTerra, Aura Cacia, or Rocky Mountain Oils.

If you're interested in more information about Young Living, please don't hesitate to email me at: danielle@unspokenspells.com and I can bore you with a lot more information about their products and what you can actually use them for. Trust me, there's A LOT! And if you're ready to make an account with Young Living and order the premium starter kit, make sure you sign up for a Membership. That way you can get 24% off any future orders too. The membership is free - so there's no commitment if you change your mind.


Even though I just started, I feel like I could write A LOT more about essential oils. Honestly, this post is already a little long. I still have a lot to learn and I look forward to sharing the journey with you all. Which is why I plan on posting a lot more about what I learn here. In the meantime, you can follow along via my essential oils Instagram page: unspokenspells.essentials

14 December 2017

THIRTY THREE

I turned thirty-three a few days ago. Ever since 2015, I've made it a point to take a self-portrait every year on my birthday. Here's 2017's...

27 November 2017

Our Birthday Celebration

These past four days have been amazing because Alex & I had them off together. On Saturday Alex & I had an early joint birthday celebration. Since our birthdays are only twelve days apart we decided to celebrate them together this year. Mainly because Alex will be working like crazy during December. Who knew the catering business was so busy during then? So, we headed over to St. Pete for the day. We went to Sunken Gardens, had a delicious lunch at Three Birds Tavern and haunted three different record stores.
We were blown away by Sunken Gardens, it was a first time for both of us too. I loved the succulent garden the most. The cacti made me feel like I was back in California. There was a chill in the air so the weather was perfect. It felt like a little maze and Alex was marking all the locations off the map like he was in a video game. It was pretty funny. We even saw some birds as well, parrots and flamingos to name a few.

09 November 2017

30 Days of Slow Living Challenge

The older I get the more I realize that a minimalist lifestyle is one that I enjoy the most. In fact, one that I truly crave. I know that might sound silly, but the idea of slow living really speaks to me. I also enjoy the theory of lagom and hygge. However, unlike hygge and lagom, slow living is something I need to work on. Therefore I've decided to challenge myself with thirty days of slow living... I meant to start this at the beginning of November but it's never too late to start right?

30 DAYS OF SLOW LIVING CHALLENGE
  1. Start and stick to a morning ritual.
  2. Meditate for ten minutes, or more.
  3. De-clutter your digital life.
  4. Don't complain for a day, say something positive instead.
  5. Identify your top priorities.
  6. Maximize time spent alone.
  7. Clean out your closets - donate what you can.
  8. Examine your daily habits - find what brings you happiness.
  9. Learn a new skill.
  10. Stay offline for a whole day.
  11. No social media until after lunch.
  12. Don't buy anything for three days.
  13. Practice single-tasking.
  14. Define your goals for the following year.
  15. Go for a walk and practice mindfulness.
  16. Don't watch TV all day, read or write instead.
  17. Journal for ten minutes about what you're grateful for.
  18. Create a relaxing bedtime routine.
  19. Make some homemade bread or seasonal recipe.
  20. Practice gratitude - write a hand-written note and give it to someone you're grateful for.
  21. Identify stress triggers and avoid them.
  22. Let go of an unattainable goal and journal about it.
  23. Leave a whole day unplanned.
  24. Have a picnic with someone you love.
  25. Enjoy a cup of tea or coffee with no distractions.
  26. Evaluate the last five purchases made.
  27. Tell someone how you feel about them.
  28. One night, don't use any lights, use candles instead.
  29. Enjoy today's moments and don't take any photos to document it.
  30. Make a new recipe from scratch.
If you think you might join along in this challenge, let me know in the comments below. I think it will be fun!