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Me… 10 Years Ago Vs Now #10YearChallenge

Happy Sunday friends! I went along with the other couple million on social media and completed the #10YearChallenge a few days ago. If you have been hiding under a rock don’t know what I’m talking about- the concept is simple: you find a photo of yourself from 10 years ago and one that is current, and you post the side by side views.

WOW

The intention of this challenge was to show how different we all look after 10 years. At 31 however, I found myself looking at the girl on the left, and thinking: “WOW, if I could talk to this girl, the things I would tell her about her life to come.”

So I posted this photo on My Instagram (Click to follow) and I wrote the caption:

What would I tell Aurora Boo 10 years ago if future me had a chance to speak to her? YOU LOOK AMAZING, STOP THINKING YOU AREN’T GOOD ENOUGH AND THAT YOU NEED TO LOSE WEIGHT. Oh, and THE LOVE OF YOUR LIFE IS ON HIS WAY, HANG TIGHT GIRLFRIEND❤️ {& keep your signature picture pose- it’s gonna be a hit later down the road}! I can’t believe the #10YearChallenge just inspired my next blog post! See you all on Sunday! 😘

So here we are…

THINK about this, where were you 10 years ago and what did you think of yourself? Were you in school? Were you in a relationship? Did things feel awful? Did things feel perfect? Now I ask… how different does it look than you thought it would?

Did you think you’d be married? Did you think you’d have kids? No kids? Did you think you’d be advanced in your career? Or are you in a career you never thought you’d be in? Did you think you’d be retired already? My friends….

This is called, LIFE!… & growing up/ growing old

BUT!…. I have to laugh when I think back to myself at 21. Didn’t we all think we’d have kids in a few years and consider our 30’s being OLD? I certainly did. Never did I think that at 31 years old, I wouldn’t have at least 2-3 kids. Why did I think that? Because my parents had me and my siblings when my mom was in her 20’s… and we’re supposed to be following the footsteps of our parents, right? Man, I’m literally sitting her smirking thinking about what I thought life would be like and how it is.

I truly, wholeheartedly, love my life. Every aspect of it: the people in it, my marriage, my relationship with God, my career, my accomplishments, the life lessons (difficult and positive), and where my life is headed. It just looks so different than how the girl on the left thought it would look.

So, what would I tell the girl on the left at 21, that I know now at 31?

I would pat her on the back and tell her she’s doing a great job, even though sometimes she doesn’t feel good enough or that she’s on the right track. I would tell her that it’s okay to challenge people you love, even though you worry it’ll be perceived as disrespectful and that growing up comes with forming your own beliefs, non-negotiables and boundaries… but that kindness is imperative. I’d tell her that one day the people she’s challenging will actually appreciate her for that, and thank her for helping teach them a thing or two along the way. I’d tell her that it’s okay if you’re not 100% confident that your current relationship is the forever relationship, and that what you’re feeling in the relationship is valid, and should be heard. I’d tell her she can have more than one deep love in life and that her soul mate is out there. I’d also tell her that she’ll find him soon and to go with her gut. Lastly, I’d tell her it’s okay to say NO sometimes.

Things I would want to tell her, but I wouldn’t, because they gave her the best life experience and growth: Don’t take out more student loans than you need- future Aurora will thank you. Drop the friends that make you feel bad about yourself, or cause too much drama in your life- they’re using you for your energy, and this will eventually burn you out.

It’s amazing how this fun internet challenge really inspired me to think a little more inward. What I gained by looking back is something I will take with me looking forward: Things that are paining me now, or keep me up at night, will all iron themselves out over time, and stressing about them now, and feeling negative about them, won’t make them go away- they’ll just continue giving me stress and worry. So, looking into my next 10 years, I will try harder to shake the things that worry me, and instead focus on and LOVE the heck out of the things/people in my life that bring me joy.

Did you complete the 10 Year Challenge? If so, what would you tell yourself 10 years ago if you knew what you knew now? Would love to hear it in the comments!

Love,

Aurora ✨✨

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How to Live Intentionally

Living with Intention. As I wrote in my last post, I love a new year. I fall in the category as many others do- I believe it’s a fresh start, a chance to make changes to your life that you’ve been wanting to make and using this clean slate as the opportunity to do it. So as I got to thinking more about 2019, and my hopes and dreams for the upcoming year, one word came to mind over and over again- Intention. I wanted to kick off the new year living each day intentionally and define for myself what exactly that meant for me personally, before the new year kicked off. What does intention and living intentionally mean?

Intention = Awareness.

Intention is to be aware of your daily actions, behaviors and words spoken to yourself and others, and what outcomes they are creating in your life. When realizing these outcomes, it’s important to ask yourself: Are these outcomes aligning with how I ideally want to live my life? And if the answer is NO, do you have the courage to make the changes necessary for this to happen? Living with intention means to also be present in your daily actions/thoughts, which will help you make changes where needed. Living intentionally helps you to declutter the things in your life that are stopping you from living your truest, BEST life.

For example, let’s say you have an intention/goal to become more healthy, and feel going to the gym will help you achieve this. You know your nights are busy, so you intend to go to the gym in the morning before heading to work or school. You may set your alarm, but hit the snooze button a few times, and wake up too late to work out. This becomes a pattern, and eventually going to the gym in the morning simply isn’t happening. Something in your plan of working out in the morning is not aligning with what you’re able to make work, so therefor your intention of getting some work outs in, is not becoming a reality. If you really want this to happen, living with intention means you’re willing to look this problem in the face and make changes needed to make it work. It means you’re going to work through the obstacles and rework your plan to achieve the goal you’ve set for yourself.

Why do I, Aurora, want to live Intentionally? It’s simple(ish)- I want to choose how I spend each day and night, where I spend my time and with whom, and where I pour my energy, knowing it’s contributing to my own happiness and fulfillment in life. That may sound like the more deep response, but ask yourself: Do you like where you currently are in life? Are you happy with your current circumstances? Remember how in my last post I said I was waking up some mornings feeling like, “UGH,” and had to shake that feeling each morning before beginning my day? WELL, living intentionally made me ask myself:

‘WHY AM I WAKING UP EACH MORNING SAYING ‘UGH?’

What is draining my energy, not making  me feel more positive in the morning and robbing me of starting each day with a grateful heart and kick-ass attitude? I realized a lot of this stemmed from giving too much of myself and my time to others, putting myself on the back burner, spreading myself thin with commitments, not allowing for me-time, no longer giving as much time to my creative outlets that make me happiest, etc. The list honestly was long. BUT, through asking myself these questions (thank you Simple and Soul) I was able to begin climbing out of the hole I didn’t even realize I was digging myself into:

  1. What are the top three priorities in my life?
  2. Does my current lifestyle match those three priorities in the proper order?
  3. How would I relive today differently if given the chance?
  4. What would a life bordered by your priorities look like (imagine your ideal life what do you feel, what do you do)?
  5. What do you need to make your ideal life your actual life?

 

I’ll leave you with this, the watered down version of how you can begin living an intentional life: try being present in choosing the things that are BEST for you, not the EASIEST, set boundaries for yourself with people/things that demand time you may need for yourself and your own goals and lastly, the hardest one for me (TRUST ME), learn to say NO.

The topic of living intentionally is not over with this post for me. I plan on threading it through future posts as a theme over the next year as I try to master incorporating it into my life. I challenge you to do the same… we can do this! In a future read I’ll talk through more personal things that lead me to wanting to live intentionally, but for now, I wanted to share how I began.

If you’ve been successful at this, or have any tips/thoughts/suggestions, please leave them below for other readers and myself!

Happy Sunday Fridays!

-Aurora

Faith · Family · Friendship · Goal Digger · Goals · Motivation · Networking · New Year · Self Realization · Uncategorized

::::2019::::

Happy New Year Friends!! ✨✨

I love the first day of the new year- I think it’s because of the endless possibility and motivation for change! Something about a new year feels clean and fresh. And I love that feeling! It’s like you can do anything because a new year has started. Of course, you can begin anything, any day you’d like, but the power of a new year is magic. ❤️

So while we begin this new year… any resolutions out there?

Mine is to continue spreading positivity, write content for my blog and blog Facebook page weekly, choose kindness when feeling negative and lastly, to put myself and my own health (mental, physical, spiritual) first! How exactly am I going to do this? By trying to live and INTENTIONAL life!

I can’t wait to talk more about this in my next post!! For now, I would LOVE to read some comments about what your resolutions are!

Cheers to an amazing 2019!

Sparkle on,

Aurora ✨✨

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… &&& I’m BACK!

I could not have said it better myself. I took some time of training heavy while recovering from an injury and settling into a new career. Over the last 6 or so months I have found that my body is happiest when its pushed to its limits. Today I managed to push it an awesome PB of 200kg leg press x5 reps (plates on machine). If it can do that with no pain I can not wait to see what it can do next. #legs #strength #hypertrophy #training #goals #healthandfitnessjourney #healthylifestyle #fitmum #instafit #quads #glutes Im also very proud of my training buddy @schultz3379 for keeping up with me and pushing her body to its very best.

Helllloooooo everyone!!

It’s been awhile since I’ve regularly updated my website, and rather than wait for the right moment or to allow more time to pass, I’ve decided to write about how I’ve been feeling and to put it out there without continuing to overthink it. This past month marks 7 years {Holy CRAP} since my (now) husband created the bones of this website for me, as a gift to create a space to call my own. A space where others can come and hopefully relate, have a laugh or feel inspired.

Over these years, I’ve connected with people in over 200 countries and have had a few hundred thousand visits to my page. Overall I feel like I’ve continued to accomplish what I’ve been trying to do: inspire and connect with my readers and those who happen to stumble across my page when a topic of mine catches their attention. I am so grateful for all the connections and positivity my site has helped spread over the first 7 years, and I can’t wait to see where it goes in the next 7!

Soooooo where have I been?

I’ll tell you what, self confidence, tied with self love and happiness can lead to the highest of highs if you’re in the right head space, and the lowest of lows if you’re not feeling like your best self. I can’t think of a specific situation that triggered it, but over the last few months I’ve found myself feeling less confident in decisions I’ve made, some relationships I have and waking up up some mornings has just felt a little..

UGH

Now, I want to start by saying that I know that majority of my life is extremely blessed, and that I know that, so this isn’t meant to sound like a whoa-is-me post. This is more of a holy crap!! I’ve been feeling this way for awhile, it’s time to kick it in the ass.

So I’ve decided to put more energy into changing this feeling by adding/subtracting the necessary pieces that will ultimately lead to my overall happiness. I’m gonna be talking a lot more about what this looks like in upcoming posts, so please stay tuned!

For today, I want to say HAPPY NEW YEARS EVE and wish you all a healthy and happy new year in 2019! Health and happiness mentally, physically and emotionally. Because there can always be bad days, but none of us should believe it’s a bad life.

See you more with tonsssss of more content and website updates in 2019!

Love you all!

-Aurora

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Our 5th Annual Charity Event

This past Saturday, my husband and I, along with our family, friends and community held our 5th Annual Give Back Lehigh Valley Softball Tournament! I’m excited to announce that we raised over $15,000 for the Center For Humanistic Change, right here in Allentown.

Each year we choose a different Lehigh Valley non-profit to be the beneficiary of the tournament. Over the last 4 tournaments, we have raised $25,000 hit $40,000 with this year’s funds! The day opened with a speech from our Whitehall Mayor, Mike Harakal, as he spoke about the Heroin and Opioid Epidemic in our community, and how it has effected many all us personally.

We also read the personalized letter we received from Governor Tom Wolfe of Pennsylvania sending his support of the tournament!!! (So Amazing!!!)

After this, we had countless games where each team played to have a great time and hopefully make it to the finals!

During the games, teams bid on raffles, enjoyed good from our sponsors, Bayou Boys Hospitality Group and enjoyed the sunny (unexpected) weather!

The tournament was a HUGE success and a day that my husband and our friends and family look forward to each year. We do this because it’s the right thing to do, and helps so many people in our community. Thank you to those who made the day a success, and if you’re interested in joining next year, comment below!

Until next year,

#GiveBackLV

Xo Aurora

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Find Someone Who Loves You Well

Find someone who loves you well. Someone who never belittles you. Even in the heat of an argument. Someone who is gentle with you, but does not treat you like you are fragile. Someone who knows what you are capable of, and celebrates those pieces of you. Not someone who is intimidated by your strength. Someone who doesn’t make you feel guilty for being flawed. It is not love’s job to punish you. And remember the person you love is just as broken as you are when they fall short. No one is perfect – do not hold them to this standard. Find someone who is patient, forgiving, and apologetic. Someone who practices forgiveness freely and often. Love someone who is humble, kind, and empathetic. Not only with you, but with a beggar on the street, or a stranger in the supermarket. Common courtesy is important. Compassion is important. Kindness is important.

Best. Quote. Ever.

I posted this on my Facebook group and so many people could relate to it and loved it. Isn’t the above what love is ALL about?! Finding that person that gets you, doesn’t judge you, doesn’t put you down or make you feel bad even in moments of weakness. And the reminder that your person deserves that from you too.

Finding someone who is empathetic, kind, humble and treats others with respect is so important, and being that kind of person is just as important! Ahh… gives me all the feels. Find, and better yet, BE this kind of person ❤️

Cheers,

Aurora ✨✨

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Let Freedom Ring

Happy July 4th everyone! From our home in Pennsylvania to wherever you are in this great nation, I hope you take a moment today and give thanks to those who have given or are risking their lives for our freedom.

I’ve had a lot of family and friends in the military over the years and have so much respect for them knowing the sacrifices they made personally and for their country. If you are someone who serves to protect our freedom, or know someone who has or is, THANK YOU! Our nation wouldn’t be as great as it is without your/their service!

God Bless you, and God Bless America!!!!!!!

🇺🇸-Aurora

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Sunday’s Are Hard…

Maybe if we all sit extremely still Monday won’t be able to see us.”

HAS. ANYONE. ELSE. SEEN. THIS. AND. THOUGHT. OMG. THIS. IS. ME?!?! Ugh! 🙋‍♀️🙋‍♀️🙋‍♀️

I have this thing that I call Sunday night before we getting into Monday… want to know what it’s called?

Yes… The Smonday feeling is real over here! But here are some things I do to try and not let my last bit of weekend end in the negative…

1️⃣ Prep your week! What’s coming up? Do you need to food shop/food prep/pack clothes. Do it!

2️⃣ Do something you enjoy today! Sunday is still the weekend and you deserve spending (even if only a little) part enjoying it! (Wash the car, go window shopping, order something off AMAZON or TARGET!

3️⃣ Take a breather. Watch your favorite movie, clean if you like cleaning, do some laundry- just make sure it’s something you can relax doing and breathe.

4️⃣ Have a moment of gratitude. Sometimes when I’m feeling down or negative, I think about the things that I’m grateful for giving thanks for them. Unhappy times doesn’t have to mean an unhappy life.

5️⃣ Lay your clothes out for tomorrow. I don’t do this half as much as I should, but when I don’t have to pick an outfit in the morning, it makes my morning start off a little easier.

Happy Smonday my friends! It’s officially 7:52pm here in Pennsylvania, so the Monday blues could be settling in… but instead, I’m gonna relax with the husb and watch our new favorite show on Netflix.

To realizing that Sunday’s aren’t so hard..

✨✨Aurora

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Happy News in the Media

Every once in awhile, I come across some really amazing and heartwarming stories on the internet. Below are a bunch I’ve posted on The Weekly Sparkle Facebook Page that have touched a lot of my followers. If you need a pick me up today, here is your dose of Positivity and human to human kindness going on around us ✨✨

Truck Drivers Save a Suicidal Man’s Life

Two Men From Different Walks of Life Enjoy an Impromptu Basketball Game

Lehigh Valley Couple Creates Give Back Tournament to Help Local Non-Profits Each Year- 2018 Benefactor Announced

Women Can Hear For The First Time And Gets Proposed To

Man Gets a Surprise Thank You From Children He Saved During the Holocaust

Will Smith Talks About Who You Surround Yourself With- Who is Fanning Your Flames?

Please send more videos my way in the comments if I should add them to a future post!!

✨✨- Aurora

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Starting with your SELF

Self-love, self-respect, self-worth… There is a reason they all start with “self“. You cannot find them in anyone else.

This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. How much of the way we view and accept ourselves relies on the way that other people view and accept us? Are you only your BEST self if others view you as such? And lastly, how much weight do we put on how others perceive us, vs what we perceive ourselves to be?

It’s cliché, and my writing it won’t let it sink in immediately for you, but it all starts on the inside. If you love, respect and deem yourself as worthy of happiness (and everything else!), then that is all you need.

The perception and viewpoint of others about you doesn’t define who you are and what you’re capable of. I don’t have great advice on how you can begin to see that, other than that you can start with baby steps any time you want.

For me, I notice when I begin going down the rabbit hole, that I literally need to close my eyes and ask God to help me through the moment and to let it pass. Of course, you don’t need God to help with you that, but I prefer having his support. It’s like my internal therapist.

So that’s a baby step I take to make sure my own self talk doesn’t lead me to continue negative thought or emotion. Of course, any aspect of your life could use a little more “self-_______” in it at any given point, but the goal is the remember that it all starts, and ends, within you.

You can’t expect anyone else to fulfill what you need on the inside to feel whole.

To working on the inside, first.

-Aurora