2014 Goals Update

Monday, March 31, 2014

And just like that the first quarter of 2014 has come to a close.  Can you believe it?  That went by way too quickly!  

I thought it would be appropriate to take a look back at the goals I set for myself in the beginning of the year and see how I've done and adjust them for the next 9 months.  Let's get down to business, because this can be a little lengthy.

1st Quarter Goals: My goals were to start incorporating good breakfasts and get in the gym.  While I was able to work on my breakfasts alot, the gym was a fail, sad to say.  I only went a hand full of times.  Some of the fun breakfasts I made include: Almond Joy Chia Overnight Oats | Blueberry Banana Smoothie | Basic Green Monster Smoothie.  I also love to eat the Chobani Flip yogurts.  They are seriously the best.

2nd Quarter Goals:  The first quarter I didn't really set goals for the year.  By the end of the year I would like my healthy lifestyle to include working out 5 days a week and to be eating clean 80% of the time (you got to live a little, right)?  This quarter I want to work on making the gym a habit (I can't trust myself to come home and workout at home yet), and meal prepping.

1st Quarter Goals:  While I haven't reviewed my interest rates lately, worked towards actively getting rid of one of three student loans, pay above the minimum on my credit card or create a steady side income; I was finally able to manage my bills every month and pay them on time which is a definite win for me!  PS: And it feels amazing.
PS: I know it seems like this ocean has nothing to do with finances, but it does - enjoying God's natural beauty is completely free, and good for the soul ;)

2nd Quarter Goals:  In light of the accomplishments above, this quarter I want to focus on budgeting my free money more effectively, start to practice Dave Ramsey's principles on managing your finances (which include interest rate shenanigans and getting rid of your smallest debt - which is one of my student loans) and create some time to actively work on creating a steady side income.

1st Quarter Goals: I've been purging, my friends, and it's been amazing to get rid of that clutter.  I still have quite a bit to go through - but every weekend I tackle some of it and it just gets better and better!  So far I've been able to get rid of two dressers, boxes galore and have a desk waiting for a friend to pick up for her son.  I was also able to make a little headway on my closet, but that'll come eventually.  My bathroom is almost done being organized which is great.  I think I can knock out the rest of it in a Saturday.  Lastly, I will be able to create a functional place for blogging/business once the desk is gone and I can utilize smaller pieces or pieces that can be stowed away when they aren't in use to minimize the clutter and have more open space in the room.
See how pretty and organized I can be when I need to be!! Haha.  Maybe this was just an excuse to post what I get paid to do!  At any rate, it's still organized and pretty!!

2nd Quarter Goals: I'm so happy with my progress for organization, and my goal is to just continue the good progress.  Once everything is cleared out I can start rearranging my room and making it my oasis!  I already have a decor theme and am finding pieces that I want along the way.  Super excited about that. Another thing that I want to do is re-organize the bar area.  Yes, we have a bar!  I have my smoothie station set up there but it is quite messy with my grandpa's coffee station there - as well as doggie treats and all kinds of goodies clutter.  

1st Quarter Goals:  With these goals, we'll never arrive.  There is always room for improvement and to grow, but I'm really happy about the progress that I've made thus far with having a JOYFUL LIFE.  I wanted to accomplish this by trusting in the Lord more, building my relationship with God, getting connected to my church and actively involving God in my decisions.  I haven't lived my life perfectly, by far, but I have been much more aware of realizing that I need to lean on Him more, to cast my cares on Him and realize that if I want to get anywhere in this life, He needs to be first.  There were a few situations where I let myself go, as far as negativity is concerned.  As soon as I realized the path I was going down (and that I'd been there before), I would start to CHOOSE to change direction, and let God guide my path, opposed to myself.  Every time it works like a charm, and I am that much happier - and closer to living that JOYFUL life.  I've mentioned it a few times before, but I joined a book study at church and it is so good to be around like-minded people all striving to ultimately let God be the center of our lives - through whatever downfalls we may encounter.  It is so important to have that community and accountability, and I'm so thankful that God gave me the courage to step out of my comfort zone and connect with these ladies.
One of my favorite worship songs!

2nd Quarter Goals: This quarter I want to continue to press into Him and take it further.  I definitely need to work on reading my Word on a daily basis and creating a routine to spend time with Him.  There are a few books that I want to read once this book study is over that I believe will really help me take it to the next level.

Those are my goals for the next quarter of 2014.  Have you glanced back at your goals that you set in the beginning of the year and the progress you've made on them? Please share or send a link so that we can all encourage each other to continue to reach those goals we've set for ourselves so that we can continue to grow in every area of our lives and be more amazing than we already were!

xoxo, Aukele

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RECIPE: Banana Nut Zucchini Muffins

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Who can resist the warm, spicy sweet and nutty aroma of a banana nut muffin?  Throw in some zucchini and you get an extra dose of moisture giving you an insanely good muffin without the added fat!  Hey, you don't even need to put butter on this thing... it's that good!

Also - I think brown sugar is the cure-all to having the best of the best in the baking world.  Well that and browned butter (though I haven't tried it in this recipe yet).  At any rate, I love just swapping out that old boring white granulated sugar for brown every chance that I get, and you should too!! :)  Promise.

Banana Nut Zucchini Muffins

2 1/2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 cups zucchini, shredded
2 large bananas, mashed
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and prep your muffin pan with liners or nonstick spray.  Combine flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder and salt (important to mix together before adding in wet ingredients).  In a separate bowl cream butter and sugar together.  Add the eggs, one at a time into the butter sugar mixture.  After the eggs are incorporated stir in the vanilla, zucchini and banana.  Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir just until combined (make sure to not overmix).  Fold in the walnuts.  Fill muffin tins 2/3 of the way and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes (check with a toothpick).  Let muffins cool completely in pan (about 30 minutes).

Optional:  Top muffin batter with nuts, chocolate chips or whatever else you fancy!

xoxo, Aukele
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Handlettering - IG Inspiration

Saturday, March 29, 2014

 Happy Saturday lovelies!  I just wanted to share some of the latest handlettering inspirations I've been swooning over.  I love the idea of handlettering and am enjoying the skillshare class I'm taking on it (even though I'm moving at the pace of an elderly tortoise).

At any rate, enjoy swooning over these amazing artists!! And check out my latest accomplishment at the end!

via @beatriceeeeee

via @francesca_tanner

via @magicmaia

via @markvanleeuwn
Lastly, Jennifer from Hello Brio did a post last week on Typography and included a tutorial she did for Luvly Marketplace.  Instantly I knew I wanted to try it out, and it came out pretty decently for my first go around.  I will definitely be working to perfect this method of digitizing handlettering!

Have an amazing weekend! I'm off to have a productive Saturday that may or may not include a break for a lil pedicure!!

xoxo, Aukele
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Currently Loving // 004

Friday, March 28, 2014

What's cracka-lackin' mackin'????  It's Aloha Friday and I'm so excited for the weekend!! It's that time again where I share with you all some of the things that I'm currently loving and digging!!  So let's get down to business.

You all know how much I love the message behind the So Worth Loving brand (it's inspired my Brave Dame series).  I already have one shirt from them, but I had to get this black and gold one when it came out! I lalalala LOVE it!  Go and buy it here!
I love me some Jimmy Fallon. If ever I'm feeling down or having a bad day and just need a laugh, he is one of my main go-tos on YouTube.  I love watching all the hashtag videos, anything Justin Timberlake, all the games he plays with his guests - and this Evolution of Hip Hop Dancing with Will Smith!  It'll probably be a continuing "series" just like the History of Rap with MY BELOVED JT!  Anyhow, check it out - it's cute and funny.

Now, I don't normally talk about beauty products on the blog, however, in my hay day I wanted to be a YouTube beauty guru and do LOVE putting on make up and getting dressed up.  It's only natural beauty products will sneak in every now and then.  I'm a huge fan of these Yes To Cucumber Facial Towelettes.  They are hypoallergenic, alcohol-free and non-comedogenic.  I use them to wipe my face every night when I get home and it leaves my face feeling clean, fresh and soft.
I might be late to the glitter party, but I really don't care!!! I'm loving all the gold printables and screen print t-shirts!! So this DIY definitely caught my eye.  Now to be on the hunt to find those transfers in "out in the middle of the Pacific ocean" Hawaii.

And last but not least, my favorite jam of the week!  I heard it a few weeks ago for the first time on the radio, and have had it in my iTunes library ever since - however, it wasn't up until this week that I really started listening to it on Spotify and it's been non-stop ever since (oh wait, and I'm kinda late to the Timber party too, but that's been playing as well!).

All of Me by John Legend on Grooveshark

So those are five things that I'm currently loving!!! What about you???  PS: Check out more of the Currently Loving series here.

Have an amazing weekend!
xoxo, Aukele
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Live a VIBRANT Life!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Life will never be 100% perfect.  People will mess up.  The weather will change in a moment's notice.  The economy may tank unexpectedly.  A bird might poop on your hair two seconds after you walk out of a salon. YIKES!  And in the midst of it all, we get to make the decision whether to be happy or sad; joyful or sorrowful; optimistic or gloomy.

This week, no matter what comes my way, I choose to have a vibrant week.  According to good ol Merriam Webster, VIBRANT means, having or showing great life, activity and energy; very bright and strong. I want to have a great life.  I want to partake in great activities, and emit good energy to those around me.  I want to be a bright and strong BRAVE DAME!  Don't you?

My action plan?  Three easy steps!

1. Take care of myself.
In every area of my life, I need to DO ME!  Physically, financially, spiritually, socially, emotionally.  If you can't take care of yourself first, if you can't love yourself first - how do you expect to take care of and love others.  How can you emit good energy to those around you?  For me, this means:
  • Getting in the gym and being active.  Last night I convinced myself I'd work out at home (stationary bike and a pinterest workout), however, when I got home my nephews were there.  I ended up helping one of them with homework.  Then my mom made this fabulous dinner and I ate more than usual. Afterwards I lounged around, talked with R and watched Blacklist.  Before I know it its 10:30 and time for bed!
  • Sticking to my budget. It is so stressful when you know you are strapped for cash, or choosing to not live within your means.  Last week I was a little over-zealous in getting ahead with bills and actually overdrafted my bank account.  Luckily I was able to put money in there to cover the overdraft, but that meant that for the next ten days I'd have to do with the cash I had in my wallet ($13/day).  So I'm making it work.  Guess what?  Yeah, its not fun that I can't just go to happy hour with a girlfriend or buy some makeup at MAC, but it is much more rewarding to be successful at this challenge and be a good steward over my money!
  • Build my relationship with God.  This part is so vital to my everyday happiness and overall joy in life.  I know without him I would be in a really bad place emotionally, and I'm so thankful for his unending grace, mercy and love that He shows me every day.  The least I can do is dedicate a small part of my day to tell Him I love Him, worship Him and let Him guide my day.
  • Broaden my social circle.  If I learned anything from my last relationship, it was to not revolve my world around another human being. Huge, huge lesson!  Old habits die hard and it is easy to get caught up into that vicious cycle again.  It is so important to remind myself daily of this!  Luckily I visit with this awesome group of girls once a week for girl talk + we are going through the book Chazown which also feeds into my spiritual life as well!
  • Letting things go.  I can be a very emotional person.  I love to love people, and I love them hard.  It is hard for me to accept that someone would do something hurtful to me and I give many people the benefit of the doubt when they don't deserve it.  Also, I like to over-analyze situations, and can totally misconstrue something.  I came across a status post on Facebook last night, and it couldn't be truer than true.  It's funny because lately I've been telling a few of my close friends that I've come to realize that if I want a different outcome with R than past relationships, I need to do something different.  I need to relax a little bit, and not over-analyze simple situations and make it complicated, or albeit dramatic!
"If you've been through a string of failed relationships, remember that only one thing has remained constant through all of them - YOU.  Whether its the way you pick the people you choose to date (your "type"), the ways you choose to communicate and react or even what you're looking for in a relationship, something has to change.  The only thing that you can control in this life is yourself.  That's where change begins." - Theo Caesar (facebook).
2. Always look for the good.
It is a daily choice to see the glass half full, opposed to being half empty.  Living a vibrant life means to find the good in every situation, even if that just means a lesson learned.  It is TOO EASY to pick out the negatives in this world.  "Oh my eyebrows aren't shaped the same."  "OMG, there is so much traffic."  "I can't believe I have to work with her again!"  I'm sure you all could come up with a million other negative outlooks that you might encounter through daily life.  Let's look at life through a different set of glasses where we see that we are all beautifully and wonderfully made.  Where, we take that extra time in traffic to catch up on a favorite podcast, listen to some fun tunes and have a karaoke party for one!  Where, we take working with that "favorite" co-worker as personal challenge to better one's self and build up our own character.

3. Encourage others to do the same
While encouraging others to live the life I'm preaching, it keeps me accountable to continue to live a joyful and vibrant life every single day, even when the going gets tough; because actions ALWAYS speak louder than words.  And when you're able to pull that off, it just makes life that much sweeter!

So choose to have a VIBRANT day today!!
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Friday Morning Coffee // 004 (a change in direction)

Friday, March 21, 2014

This feeling has slowly crept in and is more prevalent now, than ever before.  A time for change.  I started to feel it after I came back from my impromptu blogging break (end of last year, 2013).  And, as I got back into the swing of things around here, the feeling has gotten stronger and stronger.


The feeling is the need to express myself in newer ways.  My last break up really changed me.  In some ways I went back to the old me from 2 1/2 years ago.  Yet, in other ways, there is a new me: a stronger me, a braver me, a more confident me.  Though there are road blocks, obstacles in the way, unsteady bridges - I feel the need to share this part of me.  To be a voice to other women that need to realize that others are struggling and overcoming.

I've been feeling a pull to take 91D into a new direction.  There will be some mainstays.  Other topics may not recur as frequently, or possibly ever - but I really feel that this new direction will blossom and there will be some real depth to this blog and true community here.

There may possibly be a name change.  I'll have to look into that and all the transferring to be a smooth process.  This is mostly due to the fact that 91 Dash was the first part of my address of my past home where I resided with my ex and his son.  Now that I've turned a new leaf, it may be time to rebrand this 'ol blog here as well.

At any rate, for those of you new here - feel free to chime in, but I'd really like to know what the old timers think and the directions you feel my blog has taken since I've been back!

Have an AMAZING weekend,

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PS: We're backin it up with Whitney!
The Man by Aloe Blacc on Grooveshark

Life Lately

Thursday, March 20, 2014

So if you didn’t know, we’re already down three weeks in March and I’ve posted a whole FOUR blog posts!  Wow.  I guess it is pretty safe to say that life has been handing it to me lately and when I get home at the end of the day all I want to do is put my feet up and relax!  Today we’re doing a catch all of what’s been going of as of late!  Go grab yourself a cup of tea of coffee, cause this is going to be a long one.

FOOD!  I’m a big foodie!  I love the acai blended breakfast smoothie.  I tried one other and it wasn’t all that great!  I’ll stick to this one!  Fat Tuesday was on March 5th!  In Hawaii we dub it Malasada Day.  If you don’t know what these delicious balls of dough are, get educated!  Rice Cake is a popular snack in Hawaii that you usually get from the Manapua Man (Hawaii’s manapua man is equivalent to the mainland’s Taco Truck).  It is originally from China, and you can read more about it: here.  One of my all-time favorite cakes is the Guava Chiffon!  Light and fluffy guava cake, whipped cream and guava coulis.  You can’t go wrong.  Earlier this week Kayli from Kayli Wanders posted her first experience with mochi ice cream and I got an instant craving for it, so I went to 7-11 after work to get me a mini 2-pack kona coffee mochi ice cream fix.  Work was crazy busy yesterday.  Not only did I have five family care plan meetings but I also got to help set up for a catering event.  Definitely started my morning off with some iced coffee and Brown Cow’s yummy Chocolate Yogurt.   Around 10 am I arrived in the dining room to help Chef set up this pretty pineapple tree (you can’t see it, but there are palms coming out of the top of that pineapple tower).  The pineapples are covered in swirls of strawberries, coconut butter mochi, brownies and mini cream puffs.  We also did spicy ahi poke bowl appetizers (sushi rice topped with spicy ahi, green onion and orange tobiko). And lastly, today’s breakfast, a dear old friend, berry and coconut milk smoothie topped with granola. Yum!!  And that’s what’s been going on in this foodie’s life!

I mean – these faces are just too cute right!! Alas, another dog has won over my heart.  If I could get her owner to give her to me, I would – but apparently he loves her just as much as I do!  So you all know Kaimana, that lil 45 pound chunk of terror!  We’ve been having a good time lately.  He loves his walks up the hill and enjoys playing rope.  I think I like playing rope more than he does since it doesn’t require me getting all hot and sweaty.  I can actually sit in a lawn chair and toss it all over the yard while he tires himself out!  Love it.  And that sweet lil girl in the middle, Lilo, is the cutest little weekly visitor ever!  She is a therapy dog that visits the residents at my facility every week.  She is such a loving and quiet spirit and so so so soft!  When I have my own place I will definitely be getting a lap dog just like her, because, quite frankly, Kaimana is too cool for school and doesn’t like everyone to know just how much he really loves his mom.

The weather in Hawaii has been going through some major PMS’ing if you catch my drift.  One day its raining, the next it is beautiful and sunny.  One side of the island is storming, the other side is beautiful.  The next day it can’t make up its mind.  At any rate, due to my Uncle and Aunt visiting from Canada  I was able to take some scenic pictures since we usually take for granted the places in which we live and sometimes forget to take in the beauty of it all!

I’ve been a little hush about the newest person in my life – but there is a person, and we’re getting to know each other.  I’ve definitely learned a lot from my past relationships and am applying those lessons to this new person in my life.  We’ll call him “R”.

Lastly – because you all know how much I love to celebrate all of us BRAVE DAMES, encouraging self love and self worth, here are a few of my selfies from this month.

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Under the Weather

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Good Morning!!! :-)
Oh I do have much to share with you all, but I'm under the weather :(
Boo to that.  While I'm trying to recuperate and feel better, please enjoy this video!! I love love love Meghan and her MASHUPS!


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Creative Collective: Take a Skillshare Class

Friday, March 7, 2014

For a while I've been wanting to try my hand at handlettering.  I loved the style of Julie Ann Art's etsy shop and other bloggers who create handlettered prints to sell.  I was so excited to see Melyssa from  The Nectar Collective encouraging us to take a skillshare class, and when I saw this class on the homepage, I just knew that I had to try it out.  Thus far it's been great.  Who knew I'd ever use a protractor or compass again??  I haven't completed my work yet, but this is what I have so far!

 What do you think?  The entire phrase is, "I'll fly away, on this pair of wings, with you." It's taken from one of my favorite songs from Justin Timberlake, Pair of Wings.  Once I finish it, I'll be sure to share it with you!!

Pair Of Wings by Justin Timberlake on Grooveshark

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The Brave Dame: Project Self-Love

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Breakups can be the absolute worst.  I, for one, experienced that first hand not too long ago.  They can make you feel all types of feelings: sadness, loneliness, unworthiness, loveless and more. We've all been there right?  I know I'm not the only one!
via MarilynMonroeQuotes.us
Then you have those amazing true friends and family members that keep you standing, they lift your head up high.  They listen to you re-count where things went wrong, where you could have done better - all the should'a could'a woulda's.  They tell you over and over that you are better off without them and that you deserve better.
via QuotesnSmiles.com
Finally, one day, you wake up.  You realize that everything that your loved ones have been saying all along is truth.  The blinders are turned off.  You finally see yourself for who you truly are: an amazing woman with so much going for herself, a confident woman that can do bad all by herself, a brave dame that is ready to take the world by storm, a beautiful woman who realizes her worth.
via vrawdopest.tumblr.com
 Get it girl!! Do your thang you independent woman you!

Out of no where he sweeps you off your feet.  You know who I'm talking about!  The man that is everything your ex wasn't.  The man that loves you just the way you are.  The one who respects you for who you are and what you value.  The man who supports you in all of your crazy dreams and goals.  And suddenly, you completely forget about that amazing, confident, brave and beautiful woman.  Not intentionally - but wow!  You start to think,  "How could someone accept me with all my flaws?  My upper lip hair is so embarrassing?  Oh my gosh, that scar is so ugly!" And,  "How can someone be so supportive of little 'ol me?"

As Sahaj Kohli said it so perfectly, "The fact that someone else loves you, doesn't rescue you from the project of loving yourself."
via @ecmothdesign

Ding ding ding ding ding!! Did the light bulb just go off?  It did for me when I read that on my IG feed last night!  I just wanted to encourage you lovelies - that while actively being loved by someone else is truly an amazing feeling; don't get lost in it!  Remember to always love yourself first, because if not - then you have no love to give back to those that love you!

To all of my BRAVE DAMES out there, remember to keep doing you girl!  Keep working on you and investing in your own self-love and self-worth :-)!

xoxo, Aukele
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Weekly Wishes // 007

Monday, March 3, 2014

Aloha Kakahiaka! Today I'm back with the seventh installment of Weekly Wishes link up (2014) hosted by Melyssa from The Nectar Collective.  I love this link up because it helps you to focus on small goals that you can accomplish within a week to ensure you stay productive and don't procrastinate the small steps that take you to bigger leaps.  These goals can be as small as keeping the clothes off the floor and as big as launching a business.  It is really meant to meet you wherever you are in life and I hope you take some time to think about what you want to accomplish this week and let us all know so we can encourage each other.

Wow - and last week was a blur!  We'll leave it at that won't we.

1. An organized work life.  Last week my wish was to have an organized work life.  Well the week went pretty smooth, but I still need to map out some things and write it all down so that when I have a crazy week, I still remember which things need to be priority (pending on the week).  I know, so vague - but it makes sense for me!

1. Lose 2 pounds.  I'm on the cusp of dropping one of those middle digits and I'd really like to get there this week!
2. Drink water every day. I need to make this a habit, pronto.
3. Create a visual for my goals. I want to create something I can print out and post in my room so that I don't lose sight of the goals that I have set for myself this year.

Lastly, I just had to share this video that I saw on Maddie Richardson's blog. Maddie's mom always sends her the best Youtube videos and she always shares them with her followers, so I thought I'd pass the cuteness on to the 91D community!  Enjoy :) .... Ssshh!

PS: It's Girl's Day... so Happy Girl's Day to all of you dashing, beautiful ladies!

xoxo, Aukele
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