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Wednesday Word

Wednesday Word

September 28, 2016

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Man, I could really use a vacation. That’s what’s at the heart of this Wednesday Word. With all the chaos going on, I need to get out of Dodge, like yesterday. You know, slow down, relax, clear my mind, experience a change of pace and scenery, appreciate all the things that really matter. Thankfully, I’m heading to Europe (Munich and London, to be exact) for a week real soon. So when I stumbled upon this quote by Ella Maillart, a French-speaking Swiss adventurer, travel writer and photographer, I naturally got all giddy. This Wednesday Word No. 85, found via Brainy Quote, is as good an excuse as any to break away from the routine, as Maillart said, “that dreadful routine that kills all imagination and all our capacity for enthusiasm.” There’s something about visiting a new place that excites and reinvigorates a person. I’m so looking forward to exploring Europe with new lenses, and seeing what my creativity and imagination conjures up. It’s great timing, too, as I’ll be starting a new job shortly after I return from my vacation. You know I’m gonna have to report back via one of my Travel Logs here! Auf wiedersehen, y’all!

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

September 21, 2016

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I’m tired, guys. I really am just at a loss trying to comprehend why this keeps happening to my people. Terence Crutcher, an unarmed Black man, was yet another to be memorialized posthumously as a hashtag, when he was killed by a police officer last Friday. I spent a good portion of the morning yesterday shedding tears over the senseless loss of another Black life, grieving the lack of value on our lives and a man who could have been my brother, cousin or uncle. Apparently in 2016 in the United States of America, the purported “land of the free, home of the brave,” following a police officer’s command to lie on the ground with your hands up, or even just standing with your hands up in plain view, is enough to get you killed if you’re a Black person. When will it end? I don’t know if you’re like me, but when times get rough, I find solace in songs. I turn the volume way up so that the lyrics, the beat, the melody drown out the recurring thoughts of despair. This Wednesday Word No. 84, spotted on Twitter, is a line from Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright,” which directly references police brutality that has become a custom in modern times. I keep telling myself, “If God got us then we gon’ be alright,” trying to remember that my God is sovereign and in absolute control. I refuse to believe that our struggles are in vain. In the words of one of the greatest to ever do it, Tupac Shakur: “We ain’t meant to survive cause it’s a setup/ And even though you’re fed up/ Huh, ya got to keep your head up.” We win in the end.

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

September 14, 2016

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This Wednesday Word No. 83, courtesy of Deny Designs and spoken by former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, encourages us to dream and dream BIG. What if you dared to believe your wildest, most far-out, pie-in-the-sky dreams could come true? I was recently reminded of the Bible verse, Ephesians 3:20, which, in the Message translation, reads: “God can do anything, you know — far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.” That gives me so much hope, so much joy, knowing that God’s plan for me includes victory. But, admittedly, I don’t always set my sights on those wild dreams. In fact, there have beens season when I haven’t dreamt at all, worn down by the stresses of life. When I did get that glimmer of hope, God showed up and showed out in a crazy way by offering me my dream job (more on that later). And even then, this experience has taught me that I’m not dreaming big enough! God is so faithful, so generous. May this Wednesday Word inspire you to get back to a place where you can dream the desires of your heart for yourself, and keep on keeping on, if you’ve always been a big-dreamer. It’s a beautiful thing!

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

September 7, 2016

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“Parlez-vous français?” I don’t, but I figured I’d switch it up for this Wednesday Word. Initially, it was the bold, swift hand-lettering that lured me in, but it was the sentiment behind these words that made me want to camp out and unpack the meaning. This Wednesday Word No. 82, found all over Pinterest, has a decidedly whimsical message. “Savoir où l’on va et adorer s’y perdre” (roughly) translates to “know where you are going and love to get lost.” Enchanting, right?! I can’t help but think of my upcoming trip to Munich, Germany, and London, England — two vibrant international cities I’ve long yearned to visit. This quote, in my opinion, is the right attitude to have while traveling. My traveling philosophy (“travelosophy,” if you will) is to have a game plan, but don’t be so rigid to where every day is planned down to the minute. Leave a little leeway for some happy accidents and discoveries. I mean, the plan is to go to Oktoberfest, but who knows what can happen on the way there or afterward? Maybe we’ll wind up in some remote village and find a mythical fountain of youth. Maybe we’ll meet some cool Germans who become lifelong pals. Maybe we’ll buy some lederhosen and make a fashion statement for the rest of our stay in Deutschland. I’m eager to embrace it (whatever “it” may be).

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

August 31, 2016

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I like seeing people — especially those I’m close to — succeed. I mean, they win, I win, right? We should all strive to be a part of a tribe full of winners. Aim to surround yourself with people with focus, drive and vision. Now, those are real #squadgoals. This Wednesday Word No. 81, courtesy of The Daily Mark, is a reminder of the posture you should maintain when others around you thrive. Be happy for them. In no way does their success diminish or infringe upon what you have or will attain. What’s for you is for you and you alone. Not gonna lie: There have been times when I’ve compared myself to another person who achieved something and wondered when it would be my turn. Heck, If I’m being brutally honest, I’ve even gotten mad at God for taking His sweet time with the new job, the boyfriend, the car, the raise, the you name it, and in other instances for giving someone else the very thing that I prayed for! I don’t recommend that. At all. You know the amazing thing about God? His blessings are never-ending. There’s no need to be bitter about someone else’s achievement. It reminds me of the saying, “Blowing out someone else’s candle doesn’t make yours shine any brighter.” Speaking of friends shining brightly, I just copped my friend Sharp Skills’ new album “On My Rebel Ish.” Seriously, check it out. Dope lyrics, fire beats. I love to see friends operating in fields they’re talented in and passionate about, and seeing them triumph.

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

August 24, 2016

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This Wednesday Word No. 80, courtesy of Live Life Happy, could be applied to a romantic relationship; however, I’m reading into it on a friendship level. There are people who come into you life and they become so engrained into the fabric of your being it’s like you can’t even picture your life before they became a part of it. Those are the types of friendships that stand the test of time and last a lifetime. I’m grateful to have a decent number of those people in my circle, but I immediately thought of one in particular when I came across this quote. In fact, one of my best friends, Sierra, who I hung out with in Vancouver, Washington, and Portland, Oregon, two weekends ago comes to mind. I recall the first time we met, one wild night in the Deutsch residence halls at UC Berkeley circa 2003 while I was visiting my bestie, Yvette. We’ve been tight ever since. I have a suspicion that God knew I’d need someone as witty and caring and adventurous and optimistic as Sierra to walk with me on my life’s journey when He created the both of us. She’s even tattooed on me (she’s the “S” in my one and only “SAY Love tattoo — “Ashley” and “Yvette” being the “A” and the “Y”). When I think about our friendship, it makes my heart — and soul — smile. Love you, Goods!

Do you have people like this in your life? If so, be sure to let them know you love and appreciate them.

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

August 10, 2016

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We all want to be successful, but what does that look like to you? This Wednesday Word No. 79, courtesy of QuoteAddicts, gives you permission to define “success” on your own terms. I was recently having a conversation with a mentor of mine who has carved out a lane for herself professionally and wants the same for me (bringing it back to last week’s Wednesday Word No. 78 about women empowering other women. It’s right here, in case you missed it.). We were chatting about how talented women typically don’t put themselves out there for promotions because they don’t want to appear too aggressive or doubt whether they’re qualified (they most certainly are, by the way), whereas an unqualified, overly confident man will traipse his way up the ladder with ease. No shade! These are facts, y’all! So it got me thinking about what I envision for myself in the long term. I encourage you to do the same. I mean, if Drake and Trey Songz can do it, so can you! Achieve success by any means necessary. And don’t play by their rules. There I go again channeling DJ Khaled. “They” don’t want you to win. Trust me. Life’s too short not to pursue the desires of your heart. Go for yours, ladies! Go rogue and forge your own pathway to attaining your goals. So go ahead and dream big!

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

August 3, 2016

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This Wednesday Word No. 78 is all about girl power. Shout out to all the women encouraging each other, instead of cutting each other down. I never quite understood why or how grown-ups could willingly engage in and thrive on such negativity. High school’s over, ma’am. But I digress … This past weekend I had the privilege of being in the company of six beautiful, powerful, inspiring women at a workshop. As we each went around the circle sharing our own personal pinnacle moments of courageousness, I was awestruck hearing the affirmations from other women and the wisdom (so much wisdom!) shared freely. It was amazing to see a little bit of ourselves in each other’s stories. And it was a prime example of iron sharpening iron, and women reaching back to pull each other out of darkness, grief, despair, self-consciousness, fear and such, and up into light, joy, freedom, power and hope. I wish I could bottle the energy in that room, truthfully. This Wednesday Word, spotted all over Pinterest, is a reminder of how much women need other women. Build your tribe around others who will build you up and speak life, who will shoulder your burdens as if they were their own, and who will inspire you to be the best version of yourself.

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

July 27, 2016

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If I could, I’d buy First Lady Michelle Obama a round of drinks and the most beautiful bouquet of flowers. But I can’t so I’ll just express my adoration for her in this Wednesday Word. Can we just take a moment to bask in the beauty and eloquence of our First Lady? My goodness! Her speech at the Democratic National Convention was everything and more. Although she delivered it two days ago, I know that her words will echo in my mind for the rest of my life. I mean, the part when she acknowledged the weight of living, as a black woman, in a house built by slaves … So profound! And when Mrs. Obama spoke to recognizing the gravity of the situation we, as citizens of the United States, are getting to experience with the nomination of our first female president? It’s too much.

This Wednesday Word No. 77, courtesy of Women for Obama, is a quote from our First Lady on a different occasion, but it’s still relevant and chock full of inspiration. The notion that courage and hope can make an impact kind of epitomizes Mrs. Obama’s time in the White House. In spite of whatever opposition (and there was and continues to be so much) or challenges (mountains upon mountains, I’m sure) she faced, she persevered and is an example for so many women, black or otherwise. May First Lady’s words and actions serve as a reminder that you too can be a beacon of courage and hope. Don’t ever underestimate your importance and the value you bring to the world.

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

July 20, 2016

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There are days when I find myself wondering why I was so irrational. Why I flipped someone the bird in traffic (That Sentra cut me off! He knows what he did!). Why I cursed under my breath at someone’s asinine remark. Why I’m so self-centered at times. Why I didn’t offer to help someone in need. Why I’m so quick to point out the speck in someone else’s eye before I acknowledge the plank inside of mine. I think, “I am THE absolute worst.” But then I remember, I am but I’m also pretty awesome. This Wednesday Word No. 76, spoken by memoirist Augusten Burroughs (“Running With Scissors”) and presented via Quotesgram, reminds me to cut myself a little slack when it comes to judging myself. The full quote, which comes from the author’s book “Magical Thinking,” reads: “I like flaws and feel more comfortable around people who have them. I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions.” I realize that I’m not perfect — no one is. But there’s something about finding beauty inside the mess, to paraphrase rapper Andy Mineo. Own your shortcomings, find ways to do better each day and note that that thing, misstep, flaw, what have you is only one part of a grander, magnificent tapestry of your life. And the more we see that for ourselves, we can find that in others.

To get inspired by previous Wednesday Word posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores