This year hasn’t exactly been picture-perfect, regardless of what Instagram may tell you! From my hospitalization to my layoff to unexpected financial stress thanks to said layoff and hospitalization, Vagner and I have had to pause & remember what really matters.
We are blessed. So, so blessed. Things are so much better than they were a month ago or even two months ago. The best is still ahead, even though we’ve had some rough patches in 2017.
I’ve been looking forward to time off with friends & family all year, so I was so excited for Thanksgiving! However, I know this isn’t always the case –– I’ve had years where I dreaded Thanksgiving thanks to anxiety, and I know that not everyone celebrates the holiday, whether due to its problematic roots or not having loved ones to spend the day with. I took this week as an opportunity to reflect on what gratefulness really looks like. Instead of scrolling through Instagram with major #FOMO, I’ve taken time to appreciate what I’ve got.
We started off the week with a sweet friendsgiving celebration with our closest Fort Lauderdale friends. I ate so much of my girl Nia’s delicious pot pie that I was convinced I’d still be full the next day.
I’ve gotta be honest: I don’t spend much time in the kitchen, so friends who feed me are immediately my favorites. Nia is such an amazing cook –– but the time spent with the folks we love was even sweeter.
Let me tell you –– life changes in the sweetest way once your friends start having babies! Princess Ayda is the star of every party we have, and we can’t wait for Nia’s little one to join our crew.
We drove back home for dinner with my family and my aunt’s vow renewal, and it was such a sweet time!
Going home is always a joy. I couldn’t wait to get out of Tampa, and now I count down until we return! We had a Brazilian lunch with Vagner’s parents and then a traditional Thanksgiving spread with my mom’s family.
Next up: Vow renewal! My aunt & uncle have been married for 10 years this weekend, and they celebrated with a ceremony and reception.
It was the sweetest celebration, and I had flashbacks to their wedding day when I was only 14 years old. They’ve built a family and beautiful home these 10 years, and I’m so happy for them. Such a beautiful night! Having Vagner by my side didn’t hurt, either.
I’m sitting at home catching up on freelance work. Our fridge is full of leftovers, and we’ll be decorating our tree this weekend! So, so, so much to be thankful for. xo
Ayana Lage is a fashion and lifestyle blogger based in Tampa, Florida with a background in digital media and content marketing. She’s worked for Bustle, the Tampa Bay Times, the Miami Herald, and numerous freelance clients. As a blogger, she’s worked with 50+ lifestyle, fashion, travel and food brands. When she’s not blogging, she’s focused on her day job in digital marketing, watching Queer Eye, or laughing aloud at tweets from @dril.