Monday, October 10, 2016

Monday Motivation

Living in this world can be the hardest challenge at times. I just wrote a little something for ALL my Sistah's this Morning. A little motivation. Even if your day is off to a great start and even if it's not. .we can all use this affirmation. I hope this lifts your spirits. I hope this adds to your joy.


Lorean~*
TheSophisticateChronicles 
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Saturday, October 1, 2016

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Losing my grandmother to Breast Cancer and complications from a severe Stroke was one of the hardest things I've faced in my life. She battled the disease for over 6 years, had a single mastectomy (right breast), and see her cancer go into remission twice before returning for the last time.

Watching my mother take care of her day end and day out was truly life changing. My mother who is a RN (BSN) made sure that her every need was met. My mother is the epitome of what a daughter should be to her mother!! I remember the day she died vividly. I can still feel her hand in mine and see her smile. I remember my grandmothers doctor calling my mother after 3 am to tell her (us) to get to the hospital. Earlier that day my mother was able to recall having the BEST day ever with my grandmother. They had breakfast and lunch together. They later sat around filled with laughter/love as they talked about me, my cousins, and my aunt. One thing that was never a question was that she truly loved all of us to her core, was there for us, and would do ANYTHING if need be no matter her circumstances. My mother said when she got up to leave she hugged and gave my grandmother her usual forehead kiss. As she walked out the room and down the hallway she she began to feel uneasy and broke down crying. Someway my mother knew that the end had come and wasn't surprised by the phone call later the next morning. The Doctor said that my grandmother would not go until she knew we were there. Thinking about it now my Mother had never drove that fast in my life getting to her. LoL!! Glory!! We made it though. We walked in the room with the Nurses and her doctor all standing around. They told her that we had made it and we each took one of her hands. I remember here opening her eyes looking at me and looking at my mom. She smiled, then squeezed both of our hands, and then she was gone.

My grandmother came from a long lineage of women who have what I call the "Warrior Spirit". They fought and did anything necessary for themselves and their families. My grandmother fought like a Champion against Heart Disease, Stroke, and Breast Cancer until the very end. She will forever and always be MY Sheroe!! 



This month support and show that you are AWARE of the fight against and to find a cure for Breast Cancer.
I ask that each of you make a donation in honor of a loved one, friend, or just to show you support. One Organzation that I have supported and am truly thankful that it exist is the Sisters Network. This month I ask that you make a donation specifically to them. Here is a little information on them and WHY you should make your donation or become a volunteer. .



















The Sisters Network® Inc. (SNI) is a leading voice and the only national African American breast cancer survivorship organization in the United States. Sisters Network is governed by an elected Board of Directors and assisted by an appointed medical advisory committee.

Membership is 3000, which includes more than 40 affiliate survivor run chapters nationwide.
The organization’s purpose is to save lives and provide a broader scope of knowledge that addresses the breast cancer survivorship crisis affecting African American women around the country.

https://donate.sistersnetworkinc.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=298

Don't forget to ROCK your PINK all month long!!

Get out and be involved all year. 
Visit the links below to see how you can help and become a voice in the fight.

American Cancer Society
http://www.cancer.org/Involved/Participate/MakingStridesAgainstBreastCancer/index 

Susan G.  Komen
http://ww5.komen.org/

Sisters Network
http://www.sistersnetworkinc.org/

To those who fought the good fight, may they forever rest peacefully. To all of those who are still here "Fight like a girl and Warrior". We love you 💕

Lorean~*
TheSophisticateChronicles 
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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Life. .Reflection

I knew this trip was coming up and I wouldn't be going with a team of people but with a new mission and purpose. All alone to share my testimony. I chose not to announce it, post where I was, or Go Live (on Facebook) No one knew but my Mother and a select few.




My Mother seems to always come up with the coolest ideas. I know a lot people who carry around precious items from their loved ones who have passed away. It's a way of keeping their spirit close. I wanted to carry things from the women in my family because without them, I wouldn't be who I am. 
I think about how hard they worked, all the sacrifices they made, and I wanted to just feel them with me so that I knew I wasn't alone. My mother came up with pinning the rings of my grandmother and both my great grandmothers to the inside of my dress. 




My "Ugly Cry " moment came when I walked up to President Obama and he said to me "If you are what everyone in Chattanooga is like, then it must be an awesome city". That meant a lot because there are many of us who struggle each day to do our part, stay in our own lane, and its ALL for the betterment and LOVE  for our respective city/state. Sometimes it's received with positivity and sometimes it's not. No matter what, it's moments like this that make all you do from your heart worth it. One thing that will always be known is that I was born and made in Chattanooga, TN. That will never change.

I told my mother I immediately started to cry. It shook me to my core. I remember sitting across from my great grandmother at her dinning room table as she glanced at the cover of Essence. 

(I found the magazine in her bedroom after she died and now I have it at home with me)

She was so overjoyed to see not only a man of African descent as president but the fact that it was a mere possibility that became a reality. She said "Look at them Tina. I never would have imagined".

Today is my last day of being 32. It has been a year of heartache, getting over my fears, having my life flash before my eyes, accepting every part of me for me, and preparing for the next phase. I have been tested in EVERY way imaginable and a lot of the time I thought that I wouldn't make it through. Life can be truly overwhelming at times. September has come with more challenges (I feel like I've been crying the whole month) and life changes but we all must look back and apply the knowledge we have gained to move forward. Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined that I would be where I am today. What I wanted to do/have in life is the total opposite of what God chose to do with me. I still have a long way to go in areas of my life too. More Goals. More dreams. More knowledge to obtain. More work on me to be a better person/mother/daughter/wife/friend/family member/world changer. We will all continue to be "works in progress" until our time on this earth is done.

I leave you with this. .
Take life one day at a time. 
Treat and accept people for who they are with love and respect. 
Appreciate your family/friends/tribe who always love, support, have your best interest, and most importantly have your back no matter what. 
Be the best YOU each and every single day. 
Love yourself.
Help your fellow brother/sister in the best way that you can. 
Live and know that your life isn't in vain. Be a light and rock to the children in your life or the ones you come in contact with because they need us in every way for their dreams to become a reality. 
Be proud of all that you overcome and accomplish. 
Have Faith. 
Trust God. 
Never stop believing.Lorean~*
TheSophisticateChronicles 
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Monday, September 19, 2016

Monday Motivation




Monday had become one of the most dreaded days of the week. Why? For most it's a slap back into reality. That reality includes work, school (for those who are currently enrolled or those with children), and the realization that the weekend is OVER. LoL!! Some of us have coping mechanism to get us through until Friday and well. .some of us as they say simply just "Push Through".

The reality for a lot of us is that we may not be living up to what we feel is our  potential. Working a 9 to 5 or simply chasing a degree that won't satisfy every aspect of our creative being. That's a hard pill to swallow day in and day out. We deal with the reality of this in many ways. Some of us are even dealing with internal emotional, mental, and physical battles within due to this very thing. 

I myself have dealt with many levels of feeling that I don't have enough time in the world to fulfill all that I know I have been created to do. Many talents. Not enough time. Plus the fact that everyone doesn't understand what it's like to be multi talented aka "have more than one passion you are in pursuit of". It hurts more than anything for people to put you down and not be open to understanding how/what you were created to do. 

One thing that I have faith in and know is that EVEN in the darkest of times your purpose is still in tact. The most high  God has set us apart because we are not meant to be carbon copies of one another but to be authentic individuals. Your individuality is what you have to become comfortable with and take pride in. The life that has been designed strictly for you may come with similarities to others and that is simply for us to be able to relate (empathize) accordingly. If we were all out here to do the same thing, this world wouldn't be what it is today. Our work and purpose is designed to magnify, exhibit, and show what/who God is on this earth daily. We must rejoice in being set apart and know that in every aspect of our lives love, career, family, etc. everything that is for us is already set aside for us. Be prepared for what discernment reveals and trust that what God has for you is for you. 
The very things that I have said in this post today are the very things I (my mom and SisterFriends) have to remind me of on a daily basis. It's hard sometimes out here but we have to trust and simply believe.
Lorean~*
TheSophisticateChronicles 
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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Thrifty Finds

Back at it!!

I've Blogged about one of my FAVorite things to do and that is "Thrifting". Now "Thrifting" can be classified as many things shopping at Thrift Stores, Goodwill's, or Consignement/Resale Shops. Most of these places serve as a means of helping a certain Non Profit Organzation, don't want to to use EBay, Etsy, etc. or for those who simply don't have a way to sell their clothes

Today I'm excited to post a pic featuring one of my NOW favorite TShirts.
While shopping at a local Thrift Store this Sunday (Sept 4) the cashier at the register told me about a "Free Container" full summer shirts. Now you don't have to tell me anything is FREE more than once for me to check things out. She told me to check it out and see if I found anything I liked.

I began to look and found a few things. But OH LET ME TELL YOU!! Low and behold I found a Jewel!! Straight from "Brooklyn Mint" a Notorious B.I.G. "Brooklyn's Finest" graphic tee!! When I tell you I let out a scream. .I did. I am an ALL out Biggie and Bad Boy fan (Super excited to check out the reunion tour). I took it to the register because I really wasn't that sure if it had been misplaced or if it REALLY and truly was free. I literally screamed when she said it indeed was free too.  Even my Mama was excited. 

I decided to rock it today!! I kept it very sophisticated but casual. I paired my new tee with Express Platform Black Wedges $3.00 and Seven Jeans $6 (TJMaxx).




My whole outfit only cost $9. When I tell you that is what I love MOST about thrifting. It's nothing like feeling confident and looking good for less!!  

Check back  and keep up with my Thrifty Find Chronicles 😉

Lorean
TheSophisticateChronicles 
IG: @SophisticateChronicles
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Thursday, August 18, 2016

Throwback Thursday

Soooooooo. .EVERYbody knows I LOVE my mama!! She is such an inspiration on a daily basis for me and I am blessed to have her. Do you ever think about who you would be if it had not been for the love, guidance, and sacrifices of your parents? Especially your mother? Glory!!

Anywhoo. .yesterday my Mother had an awesome idea for what we affectionately call on Social Media "Throwback Thursday". I've always LOVED and tried to mimic my Mother's style. She along with my Godmother's and Aunt's were the epitome of Sophistication. They made their style their own but kept it polished and ON POINT.

Her idea was to recreate a photo that was taken of her back in the mid 70s. I would wear the same color pants, halter top, and accessories at the exact location she took the photo. (My mother's hair was also natural so that was a plus as well.)

Check it out!!


I've got to say that it turned out pretty cool with our twist on things. The duplex was right across the street from where my Godmother's house once was. It only took us 2 minutes!! I had so much fun. She did my make up for me and everything. Such a great idea and there was nothing like being "Lauren Jaye the Foxx" for a day!! 
Love you Mama!!

Lorean Mays
TheSophisticateChronicles 
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Sunday, July 24, 2016

We are WHY ❤️




How I became involved?


So many people ask why and how I became involved with the American Heart Association and honestly I just knocked on their door. My maternal lineage is riddled with Heart Disease and Stroke. My Uncle was diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure and needed a heart transplant in order to live. He wasn't able to get on the registry in time and unfortunately their were other factors in place that kept him from receiving the proper treatment that he should have received. He died at the age of 38 (I was 2).

My Grandmother was always a healthy and vibrant woman. Outside of having been diagnosed with High Blood Pressure and being a Breast Cancer Survivor, their was nothing else wrong with her. One day she suffered 1 massive stroke and would later suffer from 2 mini strokes. Although she was able to have better care than my uncle which included physical and speech therapy she would die at the age 70 from complications (I was 10).

My Mother was diagnosed with Congestive Heart Disease in 2009. My Mother who is a registered nurse had been diagnosed with High Blood Pressure to years before. One the day of her yearly physical, her doctor took her blood pressure and would not let her leave his office. He immediately sent my mother across the street to the emergency room where she was place in CICU. My mother's blood pressure was at stroke level and they did not understand how she was even alive. While in the hospital the Doctor began to put together a plan which featured new medications, monitoring, and diet for my mother. She spent a whole week (including Mother's Day) in the hospital. That truly changed my mother's life for the better. By the grace of God and truly a caring doctor she is now healthier than ever before.

My journey began in 2014. While in school and working 3rd shift at a local hospital I became sick. It was a constant feeling that I couldn't shake. It was accompanied with dizziness, weak muscles, and no energy. It also got to a point to where I could not walk or stand on my own. Now, I don't play when it comes to my health so the first place I ended up was the ER. After being released I went to see my doctor and went through 6 months of testing. I was eventually diagnosed with Hypotension.

A lot of times as women we lead very active lives. Some of us are mother's of multiple children, wives, girlfriends, entrepreneurs, corporate professionals, and the list goes on. We are so busy that the last thing we think about is what state we are in physically. When I say physical, I also include the mental, emotional, and spiritual aspect as well. Each one of these things feeds off the other. Most of us set goals each year to live our best lives but that can't occur if we are NOT putting our health first.

Here are 3* small changes that can help you to make a big difference. .

1. Schedule a visit with your doctor to talk about your overall health. If you have a history of Heart Disease and Stroke  definitely make this apart of your conversation with your Doctor. Also have your Doctor help you create an outline to get started on your health goals.
Your goals will included: Identified Goals, Steps to Accomplish them, and a timeframe to complete.

2. Add exercise to your daily routine. Start off easy by adding 15 minutes at least 3 times a week for 1 month. The next month start off walking 30 minutes. You can also meet with a personal trainer to have a consult and get a work routine set that will work specifically for you, your needs, and your goals.

3. Increase healthy eating. Start off with healthy yet easy meals that you can prepare for yourself and your family. Also, make it an effort to teach your family about other healthy options that are outside of their norm.

These are the 3 easiest and smallest ways to start making a change. Trust me, it takes time getting use to but the journey is all worth it.


Remember in order to live a productive and fruitful life WE must ALWAYS put our health first.

Here are 4 facts that keep me in line. .
Facts: 

1. Heart Disease is the #1 Killer of Black Women nationwide.

2. 7.6% of Black Women have coronary heart disease.

3. The "Stroke Belt" or "Stroke Alley" is a name given to a region in the southeastern* United States that has been recognized by public health authorities for having an unusually high incidence of stroke and other forms of cardiovascular disease.

4.* Heart Disease and Stroke are the #1 Killer of Black Women living in the "stroke belt".


Know the facts!! Know the symptoms!!

Visit American Heart Associations virtual home http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/ to learn more on how you can get involved, donate, or simply live a HEART healthy life.

Lorean Mays
National "You're The Cure Advocate"
Chattanooga Heart and Stroke Ambassador 
American Heart Association
American Stroke Association 

The Sophisticate Chronicles

Wisdom

My mother told me over 13 years ago "You've got to put your tough skin on. Once you put it on, you won't be able to take it off. It will become your armor, your shield, and your protection. Everything won't work out. Everyone won't like you. Everyone won't support. No matter what things may look like. Never Quit. Keep moving forward".

 One of my favorite movies of all time is Mahogany. My mother purchased it for me when it finally came out on DVD around that same time. In the movie Tracey Chambers faces many challenges in her life, relationships, and career. However, no matter what she faced (including someone attempting to take her life), she never gave up and did what she had to do.



When we are being "moved" to what may seem like the "next level" in our lives, it will require more work, more faith, more patience, and more trust in not only ourselves but God. 


We may receive what seems to be the epitome of what God has for us and then we may go through trials that test every aspect of our being. This may include mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual attacks from every angle. However, when we come out on the other side. .a few weeks, months, or years later face something else. .we can then draw from the previous trial(s) and muster the strength to PUSH THROUGH. 


With all that we go through, achieve, and learn. .knowledge and wisdom are the end result. Wisdom is what gets us through. Wisdom is what keeps us sane. Wisdom is obtained through seeing and knowing the good with the bad. 


Proverbs is one of my favorite books of the bible and covers a lot!! Here you will find a word for any thing that you may be challenged with. These particular scriptures have helped me get through. These scriptures have helped me prepare. 



Today is a new day and the start of a new week!! Let's prepare for what is awaiting us!! 

Lorean
The Sophisticate Chronicles

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Monday, February 15, 2016

New YEAR

Hey Everyone!! It's a New YEAR and I'm still here. 

I haven't been active in a long time via this platform but have made a commitment to get back to it. .right here. .bringing you what I LOVE!! I started this blog over 5 years ago with the intent to create a platform for myself and a group of friends to share things we each enjoyed and were passionate about. 

This very platform has opened doors for me over the years that I couldn't imagine were possible. 
(I had the vision but you know how it is when you are working ON the vision at the same time.
Woo. .Child. .Glory!!) I am so grateful to those who have attended, sponsored, and provided support over these years for any "Sophisticate Chronicles" event. 

This year will be no different. In partnership with new Sponsors, Bloggers, and Pubic Figures this year will be BIGGER than ever!!

Thanks for all your support!!
Lorean~*

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