The Last Days of Summer

How crazy is it that it’s now the end of September? Reminiscing back on “better” days when this set was shot two years ago by my friend Juju. But what does that even mean? Was it truly better before quarantine, before COVID, before all this madness with earthquakes, tropical storms, and forest fires? Was it really better back then?

I disagree. Let’s start with my personal experience. This year has definitely had its ups and downs, but it’s been pure bliss for me… I started the year off single and refreshed—a feeling I’ve truly never felt before because I’ve always been attached to someone else. I felt free and actually kept getting better and better partnerships and deals as an influencer. I was able to expand my network and community in ways I couldn’t before. And I’m still doing that. I’m running with the momentum the start of 2020 gave me.

Even today, I’m grateful. I’m grateful that I was one of the very few chosen to come back to work. Despite the amount of work that got dumped on me, I’m still happy. Even through quarantine, I was grateful. I loved having time to slow down and refocus on things I never had the chance to do. I loved having that time to myself to redecorate my apartment. I loved having that time to strengthen my relationships with friends. It was a blessing in disguise.

I got the chance to rediscover myself for almost three months. That’s a quarter of a year, friends. That’s a long time to figure things out. Because of that forced break, I was able to strategize and plan for my future—the steps I’m going to take to get to those dreams that keep me up at night. This year has been a blessing.

My gorgeous friend Mandy. She’s had my back since middle school.

It may seem like times are incredibly hard right now—with the economy plummeting, industries and businesses failing (especially hospitality and entertainment in Vegas), COVID, BLM, earthquakes, protests, West Coast forest fires, the upcoming election… I think this is exactly what humanity needed. We were so focused on stupid bullshit that we forgot that matters needed to be addressed. So much is being brought to light because people are TIRED. And all of this is starting in 2020. I am here for it. I’m here for change. I’m here for the movement.

What’s your favorite moment of 2020?

Love,
Danielle

Thanksgiving: A Reflection

Thanksgiving this year was not traditional for me. In the past years, I’ve spent it with family. This year, my family went to Park City per usual but I wasn’t able to come with. So I went to a Friendsgiving at my chef friends’ place, also one of my favorite lunch spots, Valencian Gold. It was amazing and I was on doggie duty watching two Akita puppies while eating my feast. I reminisced to my most fun Thanksgiving which was 2017 when I spent a few days in Lake Tahoe and realized how far I’ve come since that time.

I’ve grown and transformed in my career, with relationships, perspective, goals in life. I keep reinventing myself and keep going through a cycle of metamorphosis. And I think that’s my normal. Growth is all I’ve known and I’m so grateful for that. I can’t imagine myself ever being stagnant and content. I crave constant movement upwards, constant grinding, persistence, and hard work.

One thing I need to learn is making time to rest. I am so often bombarded with work and obligations that I tend to prioritize that and other people before myself. I guess it’s the Cancer in me. I care a lot, sometimes too much. I need to learn when to slow down and when to grind because that is essential to growth as well. You can’t give if there’s nothing left to give. I always tell all my friends to practice self-care but I need to take my own advice because all I know is being busy on-the-go always.

Here’s a rare photo of my best friend Adrianne and I smiling for once. I gotta say, I’m really grateful for all the people who have come into my life, all the experiences I’ve shared, and all the memories made. I used to love shopping and gifts, but now all I want and value is presence. That’s it. I just need quality time, catching up, eating, hanging out, whatever. I don’t need gifts or material things. Presence is the best present.

Top : Amethyst Colony // Skirt : Vintage Denim // OTK Boots : 2020AVE // Necklace : Karma & Luck

Love,
Danielle

Change Is A Welcome Thing

I try stay true to myself. But that self is ever-evolving. I’m constantly changing, transforming. I always think of myself as a being that blooms but I also go through the cycle… I bloom, wilt, rot and start over. And I’m okay with that. In fact, I love that I go through this because each time I start over, I have more love to give, more forgiveness, more wisdom. I discover parts of myself I never even knew existed. It’s a journey, an adventure.

This set was shot back in 2017, before I even became remotely successful in my career. This was before I even got the Marketing job that fueled my passion and taught me so much (Silverton Casino, that’s you). This was before I even knew what it was like to truly love myself and prioritize myself. I looked happy, I looked radiant in these photos, but inside I was not.

At that time, it was so hard for me to even look at myself in the mirror. I couldn’t forgive myself for my past failures in my career and relationships. I couldn’t get over what I went through and just accept that I had to work through things on my own. I expected others to help me, and there’s nothing wrong with asking for help but I was way too dependent. Instead, I should have reflected within myself and fixed my issues earlier on.

I was struggling so hard with my insecurities. I was weak-minded, weak-willed, had no backbone. I was so dependent on my friends and family to make me feel validated—to make me feel like I even existed. I was self-destructive. And depressed…

I kept looking back at what could have happened had I just made different decisions in life. But that’s life. You just have to learn to let go. And that’s exactly what I did. I learned how to let go. To let go of past failures and to turn them into learning experiences. To let go of past love, and know that they will always have a place in my heart but we just weren’t right for each other. To accept that I am imperfect and that’s what makes me human and unique. To tell myself every day that I can achieve my dreams.

Fast forward to today. I’m a very different person from the girl in these photos. I’ve achieved a level of success in my career that I’m proud of. I learned how to love myself and to set my limits. I protect my “no”. I know when something is worth my time, energy, and effort. I know what I really want and need in my life. I give myself permission to glow and bloom daily. I forgive myself and others. I am more open and vulnerable. I have much more love to give. I am truly happy.

To my past self: thank you for going through everything you had to go through. I’m stronger and wiser because of you. I met incredible friends who add so much value to my life because of you. I’m becoming the person I dreamed of being because of you. Here’s to practicing more self-love, babygirl. You’re almost there.

Love,
Danielle

How to Dress In A Vegas Heat Wave

This Vegas heat wave is oddly reminiscent of last year’s even more intense heat. So, I’m taking it back to a look I shot last July but never got the chance to post on the blog.

I haven’t blogged much at all and I’ve been slacking quite a lot, too. I’ve been slacking on my goals and my blog, but that ends here. If anything, this heat wave is keeping me indoors and locked up with the air conditioning blasting. I can finally see what I’ve been missing out on—blogging and developing more content for the site.

I can’t believe how short my hair is here! This was right after the last haircut I’ve had… I plan to grow my hair long, past my shoulders, and I’m still working on it.  This is also the first time I met one of my close friends and photographers, Juju. She opened my eyes to a better me. Doing photo shoots with her made me feel like a more complete, more beautiful person every time. She’s that good at capturing your beauty.

I distinctly remember this day… Hot, muggy, and humid, just like how it is right now in Vegas. So I came up with this breezy summer look styling my favorite Runway Scout wrap top (similar here) knotted at the chest. I paired it with the cutest denim wrap skirt (similar here) I snagged online and a Guess belt that I’ve had since high school. Of course, comfort is key during a heat wave because I get easily irritated when it’s burning hot outside, so my Adidas sneakers were the perfect choice for this look.

To accessorize, I chose my vintage Louis Vuitton bag passed down to me by my mother. This bag is older than me, guys—now, that’s quality! A simple lariat necklace from SHOPEVREN, my MantraBand bangle and my trust Fossil watch finish off the look.

Runway Scout Wrap Top (similar here)
Denim Wrap Skirt (similar here)
Vintage Louis Vuitton bag (similar here)
SHOPEVREN Necklace
MantraBand Peace Love Happiness Bangle
Fossil Watch (similar here)

Reminisce.

I shot this look last year on July 3, 2017. I’ve come a very long way since then. I haven’t posted much on my blog because I’ve been too busy and I haven’t really taken the time to look inwards and get in touch with myself again. Get in touch with my thoughts, feelings and my present. 

It’s been a while, but I’m back. 

It’s been one hell of a roller coaster ride since last July. I’ve gotten different jobs. I’ve grown as an influencer. I’ve also found a different love, one that I know will last forever. 

You’ll see me unravel our story here on the blog soon.

At the time that I shot this outfit with Tyler, my best friend Johanna’s husband and an awesome photographer, I was still hung up on this other guy that I knew I could never be with. It was an on-and-off fling with a fickle-minded dude who didn’t know what he wanted. And I was just too absorbed in my own grind to put any more effort into a relationship I knew wouldn’t last. 

So I worked myself to the bone. I worked so hard so that I could forget this guy. I kept myself distracted with work every single day and collaborations, photo shoots and drunk brunches with friends. I was desperate to forget about him.

But I didn’t realize that all the frustration I went through with this one guy was all in preparation for me to meet the man of my dreams. A man so caring and loving that I sometimes think it’s too good to be true. 

Now that I think about it, I’ve always been headstrong and brave in almost everything I do. I’m ambitious and driven. I always try to get whatever I want. I always try my best to succeed because I want to prove it to myself that I can do this. 

But I’ve always been weak in love. I love too hard. I give it everything I have and more. But isn’t that how it’s supposed to be? I have a tendency to risk it all when I’m completely head over heels for someone. And that’s what is currently transpiring in my relationship with the man I believe to be the one. 

The Bellagio actually holds quite a few significant memories for me with this love of mine. We had our first kiss here… He took off work early because he knew I was at the Bellagio with a blogger friend of mine who’s one of the strongest boss babes I know. 

I distinctly remember my heart beating faster and faster as 10:00 PM approached. He told me that he would get off at that time and meet me where we were seated. 

And he stuck to his word. He got off work, met me, walked my friend to her Uber and we decided to take a stroll around Bellagio. We looped around the casino three times. I remember walking in my heels thinking that my feet would hurt but the pain didn’t bother me because I was with this incredible guy. 

We walked out to the fountains on this cold October night when I only had a dress and a light cardigan on, but the cold didn’t bother me. He held me close after the third fountain show we watched and asked for a kiss. I never felt my heart flutter as much as it did that night. I knew then that he would make me happy. 

I never thought I would be so lucky to meet someone like him…

Love,
Danielle

 

Shopping, The Mountains & Swimming

Of all the years that I’ve lived in Las Vegas, I’ve never once really gone up to the mountains. I didn’t know that Mt. Charleston could be so pretty! 

Luke’s family invited us to a Polish picnic in Lee Canyon the other week, and the whole family decided to go, of course, except for my mother because she’s not a happy camper. It was quite fun driving all the way there and seeing such cute dogs when we made it to the campground. 

Full day of shopping, spending time together at the picnic, and inviting the family over to swim. I definitely need more bonding days like this. 

Love,

Danielle