Promise?

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Hand in hand, we walked up the steps of my New York apartment, preparing to say our good bye sweet talk to each as we ended our date.

“You really impressed me tonight.” Johnathon said, breaking the silence between us.

I stepped up onto the top step of the stairs and made a one-eighty back to him. Even when I’m standing at the top of the stairs, he’s still taller than me as he stands on the third step.

“Oh yeah? I tend to have that effect on people. Stick around and you might be even more impressed.” I winked at him.

That crooked smile slowly revealed itself behind those full lips. “Can’t compliment you without boosting your ego, can I?”

I giggled and wrapped my arms around his neck, pulling him closer to me. “Of course, you can. But I can’t guarantee everything.”

He playfully rolled his eyes. “I had a great time again. I hope we do continue.”

I titled my head, giving him the ultimate puppy dog look. “And why wouldn’t we?”

A grimace quickly replaced his smile . “You know what I’m referring to. Are you really serious about this?”

I bat my eyes at him. “Of course, I am. Why would you even doubt me? We’ve been together how long?”

He rolls his eyes again, looking away.

“Hey,” I grab his chin and force him to look at me. “I was just playing around. I know what you’re talking about and I told you. I haven’t done anything dangerous.”

He raises an eyebrow. “Promise?”

I quickly peck him on the lips. “Of course. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to catch up on some much needed rest. This date took all my energy!”

He relaxed his posture and drew me in closer. We kissed good night and said our good byes for the meantime. I entered the apartment, checking to make sure Johnathon fully left before closing the door. Turning on the light, I dropped my purse on the couch and walked to my bedroom to check my laptop for any notifications I may have. Tapping the mouse pad to revive the sleepy laptop, the screen lit up brightly, displaying 3 messages:

Jenna: Group meeting. 2 AM. Central Park.

Zavier: Burglary on Houston and 6th. Need backup.

Tiana: K, need u! Where r u?!

Man, a girl can’t even enjoy a night out without messages galore. I strided across the room to the closet, searching my top shelf for my suit. As corny as this sounds, yes, I have a suit. Touching a familar velvet box, I grab it and lay it on the bed. Opening it, the black suit teases me with all its glory after being left in its home for a week. Sorry Johnathon, but I can’t ignore my destiny. I replace my clothing with the suit, pop the box back in its place, and open the window. Whether or not, Johnathon will ever understand why I do this, doesn’t matter anymore. I am not a vigilante. I save lives. I peer out the window, admiring the city lights that illuminate the night sky all around. But there’s no time to waste. New York City needs me.

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From One Hell to Another

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So last week, I wasn’t very consistent with my posts and here’s why:

We have moved to Phoenix!

Yes, you read that right. Why the title? Because we moved from the Rio Grande Valley to here. In RGV, it’s H U M I D. Think over 50% humidity with 115 degree weather. No I’m not exaggerating. We just couldn’t take it down there. So my husband applied to jobs he has experience within areas we could see ourselves visiting and just threw our darts in the dark, so to speak.

What’s funny is just 2 weeks ago, we were visiting my family after a year of being apart from each other. We expected to just return to the valley, after our visit, and carry on with our lives despite the sauna-like temperatures back home. Instead, my husband received a call from one of the jobs he had applied to and was offered a position even greater than the one he already had. I mean, who could turn down traveling across country? So we packed up what we could in our minivan, and headed for Arizona. I have never visited Phoenix before, so I was pretty excited for the road trip ahead. Many think it’s tough traveling with a baby when it’s actually the complete opposite. Na’omi loves traveling so much, she actually cries to go out and explore what’s new out in the world after a couple of days being cooped inside. Who could blame her, you know?

So for now, we’re in Phoenix, exploring what it has to offer. Thankfully, I have a few family members and some really close friends here to keep me company in this new city. If you guys are in the area, hit me up in my direct messages to see if we could get together. Na’omi would love some play dates. And this mama would love to have some mom friends to meet up with.

 

Until next time ❤

One Pan Chicken Parmesan Pasta

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Ingredients:

1 lb of skinless boneless chicken breast

1 16 oz box of rigatoni pasta

1 jar of Marinara sauce

Parmesan Cheese

Mozzarella Cheese

3 tablespoons Italian dressing (NOT the creamy kind)

Freshly chopped basil (optional)

 

Instructions:

  1. Using a nonstick skillet, cook the chicken breast on medium heat. You won’t need oil to cook the chicken. Instead, use the Italian dressing. Pour the 3 tablespoons of Italian dressing in with your chicken. Cook until both sides are golden brown and you have checked that it’s fully cooked.
  2. After you’ve cooked your chicken thoroughly, add in your rigatoni pasta and marinara sauce. When you’ve emptied the marinara sauce into the skillet, refill the jar with water. Pour that water into the skillet.
  3. Continue cooking the food on medium heat until it’s boiling. Once it begins to boil, reduce the heat to simmer and cover the skillet with a lid. Allow the food to simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Once you’re done simmering it, add in your cheeses! Don’t be scandalous now! Chop up some fresh basil leaves and sprinkle it all over to give it that decadent straight-out-of-Olive-Garden beauty to it and you’re set!

 

Now of course the basil leaves are simply optional. But if you’re like me, I like adding finishing touches like leafy greens to my meals to make me feel like I’ve just completed an intense Iron Chef challenge.

Pastas are super simple, even those who feel like they can’t cook can master this easily. I say that with confidence because I’m one of those people. And if you’re one who hates having a pile of dishes to clean, this is perfect for you too as you see in the title, all you have to worry about cleaning besides your own plate and utensils is a pan. I think that’s a winner winner chicken dinner. Let me know what you guys think!

Shalom ❤

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Blessings & Building Bridges

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As an introvert, friends are something I’m not always good at easily making. While I stay alert to what goes on around me, I find comfort in maintaining my own bubble of space.

Even when I’m out in public with my daughter.

However, no matter how tight knit I may try to keep my turtle shell together, the Most High God still manages to push me out of my comfort zone to reach out to others and build beautiful friendships. Of course, after connecting with others, I feel this wave of, “Ah, now that wasn’t so bad.” followed by my natural, “But that means inviting others in.” But sometimes, the right people cross paths with yours and show you how much compassion still exists today.

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Pictured Above from left to right: Young Living’s premium starter kit, 2 animal sound puzzles, a noisy farm book, diapers, and 2 pairs of shoes.

 

scarves

Pictured Above from top to bottom: Floral headband, red feather and floral scarf, teal scarf, multicolor pashmina, animal print sash, purple, orange, and white designed scarf, multicolor headband, and a black butterfly and flower sash.

 

 

What you see are just a few items we’ve been recently blessed with. Over the past couple few weeks, I’ve begun to go outside my comfort zones and connect with others to finally make some long term friends. After so many burns and crashes with past friendships, I had made a vow to myself to not engage in a long term friendship with others to prevent the same mistakes from reoccurring. While I thought I understood the damage that would create, I was willing to risk the chance of isolation for the sake of not feeling the pain I’ve felt in the past. Little did I know this decision of mine was causing hurt to my marriage. All the frustration I felt of being alone, despite the fact it was my choice, was bubbling up inside of me and causing me to become spiteful towards my husband.

Okay, maybe not wicked witch of the west level of spite. But still, my attitude wasn’t godly towards my husband.

So I had to admit my faults and realize I was bearing unforgiveness to those in my past. And like they say about unforgiveness; when you refuse to forgive those who hurt you, you’re paying the time for the hurt you’re holding onto- not them. They’ve moved on. But you’re refusing to allow yourself to move forward. I submitted my hurts, worries, and desires to Yah (God’s Hebrew name) and pleaded for a friend I could trust. One that would accept me for who I am and still like me. One who was like minded, of course. One that, similar to my husband, brings the best out of me and sticks by my side. I mean, who doesn’t want a friend like that? Acceptance is something we all desire.

So after praying for months, in the most unexpected way, Yah answered my prayer. He tends to work like that, doesn’t He? And the pictures you see above is the blessings my beloved friends have given to my family and I. When I let my guard down to invite others in, I met the most compassionate human beings. I met genuine people who care and love even the little details about me. The first picture are mainly gifts for our baby, with the exception of the Young Living box you see, that was sent by a dear friend. While the second picture is of scarves some lovely women sent me to help me begin my journey of wearing scarves/wraps on my head to cover myself. There was so much that was sent, that I couldn’t get everything into the picture. But seriously. Genuine friends are hard to come by. But when you come across one, don’t be afraid to let your guard down and welcome that special person in. Don’t stop searching for the diamonds when you feel like all you’re getting are rocks.