Life Lately: 2019 Reflections + Fave Holiday Purchases

Happy 2020 Friends!

We made it another decade! Crazy to think how much has happened in the last 10 years alone, on a personal, professional, and worldly level. As much as I could dive into all the things that affected me since 2010, that’s asking for a series of reflection and hours of time I can’t/don’t want to spend on the past. So instead I’m going to focus on one of the big things that happened to me in these last 10 years – a life-changing moment that I’m most thankful for & has shaped me into the person I am today. And in addition to my sappy decade in review recap, I’m also sharing my favorite holiday purchases that I can’t get enough of.

– 2019 Shopping –


from Christmas & gifted to myself

Leather Tote Bag | A MUST-HAVE for all you working gals/guys out there. The picture of it online doesn’t do it justice. It’s the softest, buttery leather and best part: it has a zipper! Customization option too.

Chelsea Boots | Broke these in super quick. Perfect height for running around town & made from such gorgeous leather. Can totally dress these up for a night out as well. They don’t fit tight or narrow, so these are great for those of you with wider feet or prefer that kind of fit instead.

Tunic Sweater | Been living in this sweater. Already decided I need it in a few more colors. Fits oversized, so order TTS. Also a big fan of this mock neck sweater situation (love the white color.)

Electric Fabric Shaver | No more pills on my sweaters! This seriously works so well & has drastically changed the condition of some of my most-loved sweaters & wool coats at risk of pilling.

Retractable Lint Roller | So handy & so useful! Great for traveling too.

Personalized Passport Holder + Bag Tags | Got these to match my black marble luggage for my upcoming trip to Morocco + future vacations.

Oversized Ear Muffs | Surprisingly a big fan of these. Keeps my ears warm & my hair looking fresh without the issue of hat head.

LED Ring Light with iPhone Mount | Been using this so much since getting it. Will be super handy once I start filming for my IGTV this year (2020 goal!)

– Decade Highlight –


on January 22, 2013

In a few weeks, To Be Bright will be 7 years old. This marks the day (actually the night) I created a WordPress account and forever changed my life unknowingly. I started my blog because I wanted a creative platform where I could express more about myself than what my paper resume could share about me; I also had high hopes it would help me land a job after college. At the time, it proved to be everything BUT an asset to my qualifications for a PR role… It cost me multiple interviews because no one believed I was serious about wanting the job. In all honesty, it was one of the darkest moments in my lifetime (as I shared in my Ted Talk about how rough the post-grad struggle was for me.)

But I didn’t give up on my blog. People told me to shut it down, if I wanted a real job, but I couldn’t do it. It somehow had become part of my identity and the one thing that I felt so passionately about doing each and every day. I knew this was the feeling I needed to have with whatever job I would pursue; and when that feeling failed to find me on its own, I decided I had to create it for myself.

It’s incredible how much the industry has changed in the world of influencing and I’m truly very thankful for every obstacle that came my way. Because I was hustling my ass off way before there was open validation for this career path; I pitched my heart out to brand after brand until that initial “no” became a “maybe” and ultimately a “yes” when it came to landing work. Influencers/Bloggers were not represented nor assisted in any way, shape or form like we are today. The tenacity of wanting to prove everyone wrong who doubted me made me so strong, so brave, and so determined – priceless traits I needed to keep my dream alive. Traits I wouldn’t have learned as quickly or as well should I have hung up the towel for a safe, corporate job.

I may not have the biggest following or growth rate when compared to those who started less than 3 years ago, but I don’t care. What I’ve learned and consequently proven to myself is that I can’t be knocked down during setbacks; I can only persevere. Not many people know how to push through that kind of struggle, and I’ve learned how to do so successfully on my own. I found myself through this 7-year journey of becoming my own boss, and I couldn’t be prouder of who I am today because of it.

Thank you to everyone who’s been here since the beginning & those of you just starting to follow my adventure. I couldn’t do this without each and every one of you. You’ve helped make my dream come true ❤️


  • Reply Nancy January 4, 2020 at 3:20 am

    That is quite a achievement! Almost congratulations!! And a happy new Year!

  • Reply jamie January 4, 2020 at 6:26 pm

    Congratultions on 7 years! Hopefully I can celebrate that milestone one day. I love hearing that you stuck with it, it’s inspiration for myself.

  • Reply Krystal January 6, 2020 at 11:43 am

    Loving this! So inspiring. Happy 7 years and congrats on this wonderful journey! xoxo

  • Reply Natalie Galvez January 6, 2020 at 4:50 pm

    Yay!! Happy 7 years of To Be Bright! I love all your purchase, amazing picks!

  • Reply Jacqui Berry January 7, 2020 at 5:04 pm

    Well done you! 7 years is amazing, ad i’m pleased you still love it! I’m just about to enter my 4th year – and on the whole love it. Jacqui x

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