Lifestyle

When God Speaks (4 Things I’ve Learned in 2017 So Far)


2017 has been one of the craziest, whirlwind years of my entire life…and it’s only May. It’s as if from the time I screamed “Happy New Year!” and threw a handful of confetti into the air on January 1, a funnel cloud of emotion, expectation, fear, and mostly confusion about which direction my life is headed in encircled me and took me on a not-so-fun roller coaster ride. But through it all, God, my amazing, perfect, CONSISTENT God, has remained by my side, holding my hand, and speaking softly over me in a way that only He can.

The thing is what happens when He DOES speak.

Questions pop up (“Is that me, God, or you?” “Is this what I want or what YOU want?” “AM I following MY dream or YOURS?” “Is there even a difference?”).

Doubt takes over (“What if something happens?” “Am I making the right choice?” “Is this a mistake?” “Did I even hear you right?” “Did I miss my chance?”).

And fear and insecurity start to whisper the same old “You’re not good enough” or “You won’t make it” lies they’ve been trying to sell you for years.

But here’s the good news. If you’re like me and you’ve experienced some or all of these things while walking with God, then here are 4 lessons I’ve learned so far this year that you can hopefully take and move forward as the brave, awesome human being that you were meant to be in 2017.

1.) When God Speaks….You Don’t Have to Share EVERYTHING With EVERYBODY, ALL OF THE TIME.

This is where Joseph went wrong – sharing dreams that God had given him to his brothers only got him thrown into a pit and sold into slavery by said brothers. USE WISDOM, people. In the same way you wouldn’t share every detail about every conversation you have with your best friend, you don’t necessarily need to tell everyone everything that God is stirring in your heart. Some things are just for you and Him. And sometimes, it’s just not the right time or audience. Point is, let him show you who and when to share with. Believe me, it’s for your own good.

2. When God Speaks….It’s Not Complicated.

God is not complicated. Vast, yes. All knowing and powerful, of course. Are there things about Him that we don’t know and still probably won’t know in 1000 years? Undoubtedly. But God, at least the God that I know, doesn’t sit in Heaven, spinning riddles and giggling as He watches us on earth try to decipher bits of code or signs to figure out what He’s saying like mice chasing bits of cheese on a string. Think about it. If we want to hear God and understand what He’s telling us, and He wants us to hear and understand Him, why would He go out of His way to make it hard? My point is when things tend to be super complicated and vague and full of confusion, that’s usually a pretty good sign that it’s not God…it’s more likely your own fear, doubt, or even desire talking.

3. When God Speaks…Be Patient, He’s Not Finished.

God is always moving, always speaking. So, a lot of times, when we start moving and acting on things God has shown us, we’re moving without the full picture or even say…the end of the sentence. We jump onto the first few words and run with them and, a lot of times, end up getting ourselves into trouble. Take a breath. Make sure that what He’s saying is everything that He’s saying. Then, take that step forward confidently.

4. When God Speaks….He Knows What He’s Doing

It doesn’t have to make sense in your mind. It may not be what you expect. It can take a whole lot longer than you thought it would. Where you are right now in your life may not necessarily be where you thought you’d be. But if God tells you to wait, to stay, to move, to jump without knowing where on earth you’re going to land, DO IT. There is a reason for everything that God does or says, and you can be sure that it is a GOOD one. Trust Him, love. He knows what He’s doing. And this year is only the beginning.

“Trust God from the bottom of your heart;
    don’t try to figure out everything on your own.
Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go;
    he’s the one who will keep you on track.”

-Proverbs 3:5-6 MSG

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Fashion, Raven's Fashion Corner

Your New Favorite Make-Up Brand (I Promise)


Hey lovelies! Welcome back! You’re looking good (no really, you do 😉 )! I’ve been taking a few weeks off to do some awesome fashion networking and to get some cool surprises lined up for you guys (so stay tuned)! This week,  I’ve got a special guest taking over #themakingofraven blog to talk about my new favorite make-up brand Younique (and yours too once you see how amazing it is), so you guys be nice to her!

I will tell you, I have sensitive skin, so as far as make-up brands go, I can only use a few brands without my face blowing up with little red bumps like a minefield (mostly skin correcting brands like Maybelline or Clean and Clear). Also, most brands have so many chemicals that it feels like your face is on fire (Mary Kay, Mac, Clinique…just to name a few) …and don’t even get me started on the brands that take 3 and 4 layers to even get a semblance of coverage (#whyohwhy).  Younique is incredible because it is all-natural,plant-based, and can completely cover your face with just a few drops!….and it’s affordable? Say whaaat?

My good friend Ashley is actually here to demonstrate to you guys how easy and incredible Younique is. Watch the videos below and then, once you become a true believer like me, feel free to click the link below and check out the awesome products available (that actually work!I know,surprising right?)

Ashley’s Younique Look:

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 https://youtu.be/YDgxOY4GgEM

 

Check out Younique through my party page at: CoordinateBeauty.com

Like Ashley mentioned, if you buy through my page, some of the products and commission will go straight back into themakingofraven, so I can continue to expand #themakingofraven overseas! Let me know what you guys think! Love yall! ❤

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Fashion

Working those Summer Snapbacks


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Why hello again, lovelies! Good news! We did it! School is out and summer is here! (Well, for most of us.) It’s time to break out the shades, roll up the sleeves, crank up the new Justin Timberlake summer jam that we’re all already obsessed with, all while sipping on our favorite tropical fruit mixed drinks.

Summer is one of my favorite times of the year for a number of reasons ( though really, isn’t it everyone’s?), but mostly because I can rock some of my favorite street-style summer looks…which means I can bust out my extensive, and quite frankly ridiculously vast collection of snapbacks. 

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Snapbacks, traditionally being displayed and worn primarily by men, are a great way for both guys and girls to accessorize an outfit without having to put to much thought into coordinating colors and patterns, while also saving your head/hair from the unforgiving heat that we are oh so blessed with during the summer season.

Since these hats are usually bright colors, throwing them on with a plain top or bottom, or even with a more pastel colors is fine as the hats become the center piece of the outfit. Of course, wearing a black snapback with a shirt that pops of color and patterns is something that I do all the time as well.

They also have a magical way of making you look athletic/street smart when in reality you’re probably like me and your idea of “street” includes watching all of the Step Up movies or throwing on a TLC cassette tape while doing laundry….just sayin’.  

Here’s my “Snapback Look” this week:

 

And guess what peeps?! I did my research and, as always, found some amazing quality hats at low prices for you guys!

*Footlocker has some awesome snapbacks on SALE this week for only $17.99! Check them out here: http://goo.gl/TmHTWh

*Hot Topic has some cute Disney and commic book themed snapbacks for under $15 (with 30% more of TODAY ONLY). You can find them here: http://goo.gl/0Wdvxm

*Not only that, Back Country, an awesome store where I tend to buy all my snapbacks, has a 60% off sale running now where you can get some awesome snapbacks for only $12 (you’re welcome)! Check them out here: http://goo.gl/lqHA6k

Now it’s time to hear from YOU! Have some adorable snapback pics that you want to share or even some more style ideas? Hit me up! I love hearing from you guys! Till then, enjoy that summer sun and this incredibly  catchy Snapback song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLQATzCyxfE! Love ya! ❤

 

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Fashion

I Went Online Thrift Shopping…And I Didn’t Hate It


Happy Friday lovelies! Hope you’re having a fantastic week full of sunny days, frappuccinos, and good vibes! How’s my week been you ask? Well let me tell you…

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This week I did something that I, as a considerably experienced shopper, have never done before. I went thrift shopping… online. Now keep in mind that I am the queen of thrift hauls. No really, I am. While I have no problem spending a pretty penny on something that I really like, I realized pretty early in the fashion game that some of the best pieces/outfits can come from some of the most overlooked places…especially second hand/thrift stores. Because at the end of the day, who doesn’t like to look fabulous and still have money in their wallet? Just me?

So this week, I decided to take my thrift shopping game up a level and try out some online thrift websites so that I can give  you guys an honest assessment before you dive in to this brave new world…. and I have to say, I’m so glad I did.

For the purpose of this experiment I tried out an online thrift site that has been popping up on my social media lately called ThredUP. This site is AH-MAZING yall.

Here’s  why:

  • There’s a new discount to add to the already discounted items every.Single.DAY.
  • They have everything, and I mean EVERYTHING – from designer clothes, to handbags, to shoes, to accessories, literally the list goes on and on. 
  • You get your orders within the week!
  • Shipping is $5.99 for all orders under $79, and FREE for all orders over $79
  • Returns are FREE with in-store credit! (or to your original form of payment minus $9 for processing, though believe me, you’ll want the in-store credit.)
  • When you refer a friend to the site and they purchase an item, you get $10 and they get $10 towards the next purchase (I wracked up on this one!). thredup.png

In fact, there is really only one downside to the website which is:

  • While the site does offer taking some of your old clothes off your hands to sell, the payout isn’t all that much and the process is a little difficult. (Which isn’t even a issue for those of us who literally just want to buy.)

Here’s my “ThredUP” look this week:

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So if you are thrift store lovers like I am , then seriously, go try out this website. In fact, comment below with your email and I’ll invite you personally! You know, so that we both can get $10 out of it. 😉  Till then, see you next week loves!

 

 

 

 

 

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Fashion

Spring = Denim Overalls…Didn’t You Know?


View More: http://bethanymichaelaphoto.pass.us/junestyle

Hey loves! No, your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you! Yes, I’m still here! (Sorry for the tiny lapse between articles the past two weeks, but stomach bugs, struggles with sinuses, sudden weather changes, used tissues, and tons and tons of Benadryl is no JOKE.) Anywhooo, you’ll be happy to know that I’m all better now and back to grace your lovely screens with some  super awesome fashion, super awesome prices, and not as awesome (but definitely still worthwhile) fashion related jokes that may pop up here and there as you scroll.

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SO, this week, I thought I’d talk about my favorite…and I do mean FAVORITE clothing item that is already being featured in my Spring Look Book collection…DENIM OVERALLS. With the weather finally starting to feel like spring, I’ve already opted to wear these bad boys multiple times throughout the week. Not only are they comfy and easy to dress up or down (depending on what blazer/sweater/throw you put over them), but they are absolutely perfect for the any warm weather inspired activities or even just stepping out of the house to run errands.

Here is my super simple 90’s/Taylor Swift/ “Urban farmer who’s dream is to one day be on the cover of Vogue” denim overall look this week:

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Now, as is the usual when it comes to trendy fashion items, the prices for these lean more on the expensive size (with the cheapest ranging between $40-$80). However, your girl Raven came through for you guys!

I found some gorgeous denim overalls on Charlotte Russe (which are actually where I bought the ones pictured) for only $20-25 here!: http://goo.gl/N4YpHu 

I also found some gorgeous ginger overalls for $20 at Forever 21 here!: http://goo.gl/qOkVNX

Also ASOS, one of the best known brands in overalls is having a sale RIGHT NOW! Check them out here!: http://goo.gl/Hjk2Po

Well, that’s it for now loves! Next week , I’ll be navigating the wonderful world of online thrift shopping and letting you guys know what are some of the best and worst sites out there. There may or may not be a little wonderful surprise thrown in there too, so don’t forget to stop by next week! Till then, catch you on the flip side! ❤

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Fashion

When Your Favorite Color is the Newest Fashion Trend=WINNING


Trench Coat da Burberry (só isso já faz qualquer uma suspirar), na cor Marsala (pronto, desmaia logo!). É muito estilo pra um look só... <3:

Happy Friday loves! Was this week tough or what? Ah, bygones!! It’s Friday, which means we get to talk about one of my favorite things-spring fashion! Now last week, we battled the oh-so-common mistake that people make assuming that if flowers aren’t somewhere in your outfit, you’re doing spring fashion all wrong (which i still think is the definition of ridiculous…not quite “not wearing white after Labour Day” ridiculous, but close).

Today, I’d like to share with you guys some awesome updates about current fashion trends and how to incorporate that into your closet. You ready? Let’s do this!

So for those of you like me who are, I don’t know, normal people who can’t afford to fly down to New York Fashion Week or the occasional runway show in Milan, it may be hard to know what styles are “in” until they hit the rack of your local Forever 21 or H&M a couple of months down the line. Don’t worry love! I’ve done the research for you!(You’re welcome.)

This Spring I’ve learned, from all of my 30 minutes of Googling current fashion trends (just kidding, like 45, at least….kidding again!), there are some gorgeous new colors floating around out there that are extremely easy to incorporate into your wardrobe. These include:

Mint

TRENDS // PATTERN CURATOR - COLOR INSPIRATIONS SS 2016:

Coral

Top Color, Womens Market, S/S 2016, Coral

and even Mustard Yellow

FASHION VIGNETTE: TRENDS // PATTERN CURATOR - COLOR + PATTERN . SS 2016:

However, my favorite (and I’m a little biased because its also my FAVORITE COLOR OF ALL TIME) is Burgundy or Wine Red.

Of course, how you incorporate these colors into your wardrobe is completely up to you. However, what I love to do to make whatever color I’m wearing stand out is wear it on top of a complete dark monotone color (black is perfect), so that the centerpiece of the outfit is the color.

Here’s how I wear this look:

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You can find amazing burgundy clothing items, including cute skater dresses, blazers, jumpsuits, and more at Forever 21, Asos, Macy’s, and H&M….all for less than $25! Check them out!

That’s all for now, my loves! Have an incredible weekend filled with fun, fashion, and lots of love and laughter! I know I will! Next week, we’ll be talking about festival fashion (SXSW or Coachella anyone?) and there may even be a surprise or two for my lovely followers! Of course, comment below and let me know what you thought of this blog! I love hearing from you guys! Till then, XOXO! ❤

 

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Fashion

You Don’t Need Flowers For Spring Fashion


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One of the things that I love about spring is that it’s a time to relax and rest. The air is crisp and clean. It’s not scorching hot outside nor is it still bone-numbingly chilly to the point where you wish human hibernation was actually a thing. It’s like nature is using everything in its power to tell you “Hey, life is beautiful! Time to go out and enjoy it.” And while there are still a ba-jillion things that still manage to worry us to death day by day, our outfits should not be one of them.

And in that spirit, I thought I would give you, lovelies, some easy tips and truths this week about putting together the perfect spring outfit…so that you can avoid the hassle of having of wracking your brain at 7 in the morning on the way to work or school.18-Khaki-Spring-Newest-Fashion-Trend-2015-Ready-To-Wear-Spring-Casual-Outfit-Khaki-Vest-1

 

  1. The first and biggest tip that I will tell you is that, while flower pattern dresses, skirts, and blouses are a great to represent the gorgeous blooming aura of spring, they are not the end all of all successful spring ensembles. You don’t need flowers to create the perfect spring look.

2. You also don’t need bright colors (Don’t get me wrong – I absolutely LOVE bright yellow and magenta, and I think they can help create a delightfully fun and cute look. However, if you don’t have much of these colors in your closet., you don’t have to fret or head straight to the mall…unless you want to 😉 ).

3. You also (gasp!) don’t need pastels or lace. While I am one who uses any excuse to wear lace or mint green or peach (sometimes all three-I’ll admit it!), its understandable that they are not always necessary or easy to get to in your closet. If you’re anything like me, you go through all of those pieces within the first 2 weeks of spring. Spring fashion is about creating the perfect balance between casual and classy – things that you don’t necessarily need light colors or lace to achieve.

So what else CAN you use to create the perfect, easy spring look?  Patterns!

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I use LOTS of polka dots, stripes, and patterns of all shapes and sizes and dress them up or down with either a denim jacket, leather jacket, or a nice blazer on top-depending on which side of the casual/classy spectrum I want to shoot more on.

For some incredibly affordable pattern tees and dresses this week, check out the current sale at Gap (They have some great striped tees at at 40% off!): http://www.gap.com/

For more fun patterned tees and other spring trendy items at amazing prices (starting at literally $4.99!), check out H&M’s Spring Forward 60% off sale!: http://www.hm.com/us/

That’s all this week, my loves! Can’t wait to share with you all of the amazing deals, tips, and other surprising fun stuff coming up in the next couple of weeks! Till then, shoot me a pic of your best patterned spring OOTD or a comment below and you can be featured in next week’s post! Of course, let me know if you have any questions, comments, or you just want to chat with your girl! Have a great weekend everybody! ❤

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