Starting Line

When I took the leap to follow my dreams, I knew it would take a lot of hard work. Being a dream slayer is a relentless pursuit of getting the bag your way, every day. I’m knocking on every door that I am passionate about, and praising God for the ones that He opens, as well as the doors he creates. It’s a faith fueled grind and I am here for every minute of it.

Perhaps the thing that is hardest, is my budget. While I was saving up for this time before, now I am living solely off of my pursuit and savings. By no means am I broke but there is still a change in the way that I spend my money. I was a baby about it at first, but I am adjusting in the best way I know how. I am well aware that I have more than most and every single day God shows me that money doesn’t make you rich. It’s a lesson that humbles me constantly. My eyes are being opened in ways that I didn’t know I desperately needed.

With that said, mixing and matching are my jam right now. The days of acquiring pieces that aren’t thoughtful are over. If I can’t wear them in every season, in multiple ways, it more than likely won’t end up in my cart. Also, I am moving into a time of living in a more minimalistic manner. I have too much stuff and it’s time to simplify everything (something exciting is on the way there so stay tuned).

Take these pants for example. I have been wearing them all summer with some sandals and a bodysuit but now that it’s fall, they will get a remix. Not only because I love them, but also because they are a pant that you can literally wear everything with.

All of these pieces are from Long Tall Sally. The construction is stellar. Wanna try their pieces on? Check to see if there is a pop-up shop near you. I’m telling you, it’s worth your time. When was the last time you walked in and were able to try everything on? It also helps to know your LTS sizing for future online orders. THE BEST part is meeting your fellow tall queens. It’s magical.

 Throw on a  cardigan  and  sneaks  and walk right into fall.

Throw on a cardigan and sneaks and walk right into fall.

From a cardigan, to a blazer, to a sweatshirt, these leggings are on trend and go with everything. I have been channeling sporty spice like a mug. I’m also incredibly comfortable which has been very important to me these days. I’m working hard and not trying to be irritated by my clothing or shoes. Actually never but you know what I mean.

Now, I am going to post a thousand more pictures in this outfit because it’s a lot of work to take them (check out my IGTV episode on blog shoots on IG) AND Nikki shot some killer shots. She not only shot the photos, she also slayed the makeup. Please follow her page @TheEyeThatGetsThePicture. Enjoy the blizzard of photos and like the great blogger that I am, I will sum them all up at the end.

  Side Stripe Ponte Leggings (shown in size s) / LTS Peyton Lace Detail Sneaker  (shown in s size 13. I always personally size up for LTS Sneakers)/Bodysuit and necklace - Forever 21 (some of the bodysuits actually fit me. Emphasis on some.)/ Block Sandals above  - Target (shown in size 12).

Side Stripe Ponte Leggings (shown in size s)/LTS Peyton Lace Detail Sneaker (shown in s size 13. I always personally size up for LTS Sneakers)/Bodysuit and necklace - Forever 21 (some of the bodysuits actually fit me. Emphasis on some.)/Block Sandals above - Target (shown in size 12).

While I definitely still have my moments of uncertainty, I rest in knowing that I am rockin whatever I wear on the right path with God leading me all of the way. I am working harder, smarter and in a fiscally responsible manner. The lessons that I am learning far outweigh the change in my payroll. God wants it ALL for me and I will faith it forward, achieving His purposes for my life along the way.

It’s the start of fall, but every day is a start of something great that God has planned for you. Whether a new path, new project, or new frame of mind, it’s never too late to start. Are you ready? Get set. Go!

Discover Her Journey

If you don't know, the Taylor Jay Collection is an amazing line with pieces that not only look great together but can be paired with other pieces to create looks that empower anyone's style. They are comfortable, chic and perfect for a woman on the go. 

Behind the line is Taylor. She is a mom, relentless entrepreneur and someone that I am honored to call my friend. She is passionate about what she does and created the #DiscoverHerJourney campaign to expand her scope of sizes to cater to plus as well as special collections that cater to all women in special ways.

I have always been amazed that her pieces are long enough for me. I have been rocking her collections for years and always look forward to her new, thoughtful styles. She really makes things that not only make sense but also make you feel stylish and carefree when you wear them.

 Support a brand that supports you. #DiscoverHerJourney.

Support a brand that supports you. #DiscoverHerJourney.

As a Tall, African American woman who is very underserved in the media and fashion industries, I am so thankful for designers like Taylor who cater to all women and are making strides to include everyone.

It is incredibly important that we support each other and brands that believe in US, so please support #DiscoverHerJourney in any way that you can. From sharing the campaign, to donation, there is no such thing as a small contribution. Every supportive move is a move towards an industry that represents all of us!

Thanks in advance. We all thank you! #DiscoverHerJourney

The Leap

 My friend Shay took this photo in Ibiza on a 3 week trip through Europe that I took with a group of friends a week after my leap. It was such an incredible trip. Freeing. Affirmative. Enveloped in God's love. I am so thankful for the time He has given me to recharge and repair. I know that both are necessary in preparation for the path He is about to lead me down.  

My friend Shay took this photo in Ibiza on a 3 week trip through Europe that I took with a group of friends a week after my leap. It was such an incredible trip. Freeing. Affirmative. Enveloped in God's love. I am so thankful for the time He has given me to recharge and repair. I know that both are necessary in preparation for the path He is about to lead me down.  

Well...I made the leap.

As many of you saw on Instagram, I stepped away from the comfort of a position that I had for 13 years, to let God paint the picture. I literally stopped letting the fear of what could go wrong stop me from living to my fullest potential and pursuing the things that God has placed in my heart. 

I wouldn't be telling the whole story if I didn't share the moments of terror that I have. What did you do Alicia? What will you be Alicia? What does God have planned for you Alicia? But then Faith comes through like a wave to wash them out because I know that it was a God-led decision that was 6 years in the making.

No. This decision was not made in a split second. I have felt restless for years, knowing that I was made for more and deserve respect for the hard work that I bring to the table but I didn't want it be my decision, I wanted it to be God's.

So I prayed, continued to work hard, navigated through it in the most gracious way I could and waited on God. Along the way I was prompted to do things that I didn't understand (that I now know prepared me to walk away from my comfortable captivity), until the day came that it was time to trust Him more than I trust myself.

Now, 3 months into it, I am emphatically moving my feet and knocking on all of the doors that spark passion. I am revamping some things (both internally and externally) and going after my purpose. However the thing I am doing differently, is giving God the control and the room to do His work. It's a hard thing to relinquish, but I must get out of His way to find my way. The picture undoubtedly will look far different than what I think but will give me the peace of knowing that I am walking His path of purpose for my life. I am here for it Lord!

I can't wait to share this path with you. Knowing you are there to grow and learn with me, means the world to me! What better way to start this journey than to talk about some of the things he did to prepare me for the leap.

Alicia, you just leap right!?! Yes, that has been what some were called to do but God knew that I needed to ease into this thang. I think we forget the He created us. He knows us better than we know ourselves and so when He wants us to make a decision like this, he gives us some type of nudge that makes sense to us. Something that gives us the courage to take it.

One thing my Pastor always says is do the last thing that God told you to do. With that said, I wanted to share 5 steps of obedience that helped me see God's timing for my leap:

1) Steward my money. 6 years ago, the Holy Spirit was like girl you need to get your finances right (me and the Holy Spirit go way back so He can talk to me like that). So I did. I tithed (wasn't perfect every month but I grew in leaps in bounds), saved and God gave me the resources to pay off all of my debt. This gave me a cushion. It doesn't mean I don't have to hustle, but instead of jumping off the cliff without a parachute, I have a thin one that made the leap far less scary. God knew this child had to have a little rope to hang on to.

2) Car Shopping. I got into a fender bender with my old faithful 4Runner that I picked out with my Dad. When I took it to the shop to get it fixed, even though it looked perfectly fine, they said there was internal damage that you couldn't see and they totaled it. I cried because it was sentimental, made me feel close to my Dad and I just knew I would have a car payment that would set me back financially. God sent a car that had great mileage and I could pay for it in cash from the payout of my totaled car. I didn't want it. I fought it for a hot minute until I heard chill, this is the one. I begrudgingly did what I was told to do and now this car completely makes sense and is a total blessing. The gas mileage is on point, it runs really well and is exactly what I need right now. No matter what, listen. It's all part of the plan.

3) Find Community. I have been a Christian for as long as I can remember but there was always something missing. Sitting in church alone was something I had become accustomed to but after a taping of my show, I met The Movement Church and it has changed my life. Among other things, it has shown me the importance of having a strong group of believers around you to lift you up, talk it out, hold you accountable and bring you back to God's word when you want to run from it. By no means did they tell me to do this. This leap was prompted by God but my community is certainly helping me navigate through it. My wise council game is strong.

4)  Amplified Prayer. Years ago, my prayer life was weak at best. I really believe it's a lifelong practice that you must constantly work on. So I stepped it up and continue to do my best to enhance and increase my prayer life. Praying about this decision was a daily essential. I wanted to make sure the move was from Him so I stayed prayed up. I didn't get the answer for many years, so don't think that your answer will come overnight, nor that it will be the answer that you want. Prayer changes things, fosters power and gives direction. In everything that you do, integrate prayer as a main ingredient.

5) Trust the Process.  That word trust comes up all of the time. Either the word itself, or an amazing example like this one I shared on Instagram, God constantly brings me back to trusting Him. It's not always easy, but it is a constant step of obedience that I have to foster daily. He knows I need those reassurances and He continues to unfold them through the most confusing and beautiful moments of this whole life thing.

These most certainly are not the only things that He did to launch my leap. You see, God already knew when I would do this before I was even born. Our stories are meticulously planned by Him. He knows all of the failures, wrong turns, mistakes and successes. His plan is in constant motion. We must show up, do the last thing he told us to do and rest in the peace that it's already happening. It's going to be a wild, emotion filled ride but I am thankful that He is the one behind the steering wheel.

 The LORD is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed. Deuteronomy 31:8       

Make Me Blush

Right now, I am infatuated with blush. I literally have a blush piece of clothing in every genre. So when I found some blush jeans that were long enough for us, I pounced. No literally, I attacked these jeans. They had no chance but to be in my closet. 

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And I am so glad that I did because these babies from Alloy Apparel are amazing. They come in 35" and 37" length and in sizes 3-15. In fact, Alloy just launched a curvy line that includes tall and I couldn't be more excited. It's about time a brand has us ALL covered.

Not to mention, they have just the right amount of stretch and are high waisted. I don't know about you, but I'm not really in to showing booty crack when I bend over and there is no way that you can do that in these jeans. They hit the waist just right and give you that curve that's hot like fiyah.

The top is also a tall alloy piece. I love a sheer top that actually is long enough...win-win. 

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Let's talk about these shoes. They are from Target. YES. Target goes up to a size 12 online. I found some amazing, budget friendly styles that I am going to wear all summer long. Check them out for yourself! 

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I am certain this won't be the last time you see me in blush or in something from Alloy Apparel. They are all about tall and releasing great styles daily. They really do have tall and ALL covered. Check them out and let me know what you think! 

Above the Fray

Yo. That Tall Girl is wearing glasses AND a shirt with a bunch of glasses on it. #Predictable. #MatchyMatchy.

Why yes, I certainly am because why the heck not. I mean, this shirt is the cutest and I felt like being literal. Sue me. But really these glasses are a nod to the one and only, Karl Lagerfeld.

What!?! Karl Lagerfeld hooked us up with some Tall clothes? You better believe it. Karl Lagerfeld Paris and Long Tall Sally teamed up to present a classic collection that is beautifully constructed. I love these pieces! Let's break them down shall we...

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This crispy shirt is so cute. I have dressed it up and down and gain an abundance of compliments every single time I wear it. It's long enough in the arms and not too long in the body. I know it's crazy to say that something is not too long in the body but we have all had that tall shirt that is overcut to the ankles and you can never tuck it in quite right. This one hits the body length perfectly.

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Pause for the curls! They are flourishing. Loving this line that is straight out of Oakland called Beija Flor Naturals. Check them out! The product lasts forever and my hair loves whatever is in the Maracula Milk and Creme Brulee. They also have products for the body that I am dying to try!

Now...back to the fit...

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I love a black skinny and especially one with details like the fray on these babies. The length is much appreciated, but let's give a round of applause for a tall jean option that isn't boring. I also love the amount of stretch that they have. Nowadays, I feel like jeans almost tend to have too much stretch. These hold up quite nicely but are still forgiving as you put them on. 

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THE SHOES! Listen. I love a metallic detail on a shoe. These fit amazingly however I do want to point out that the way my toes are set up, they almost make a point and are built for shoes like this. If you have a wider foot, I would recommend finding a different option. Just keeping it real. I wouldn't want you to get all excited and then have to return them:-( Been there and would never want to cause it. HOWEVER, if your foot is of the more narrow persuasion...they are lovely. Like butter really. 

  Shirt ,  Jeans  and  shoes  -  Karl Lagerfeld Paris for Long Tall Sally  | Glasses - @opaqueeyewear | Hair - Braidout using  Beija Flor Naturals   Maracula Milk  and  Creme Brulee  (a little of both...it goes a long ways)  Photo Credit -  Lakeela Smith

Shirt, Jeans and shoes - Karl Lagerfeld Paris for Long Tall Sally | Glasses - @opaqueeyewear | Hair - Braidout using Beija Flor Naturals Maracula Milk and Creme Brulee (a little of both...it goes a long ways)

Photo Credit - Lakeela Smith

Kudos to Karl Lagerfeld Paris and Long Tall Sally! I am a fan of this fit but i'm curious...what do you think of the line overall? Take a look and please let me know. I will be patiently waiting for your review:-)

I will also be over here waiting on my invite from Karl to walk one of his runways or slay a photoshoot. It's time for a 6'6" model to rock your creations Monsieur Lagerfeld. I am on deck and ready for the call. I'm so serious.

I Give Up

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Admittedly my love life has kind of sucked. There have been a lot of lows and some amazing moments which enabled me to completely understand what love is and why it is so important to have it in some capacity in your life. I have toiled over the reasons why it is taking me so long to find it. There have been tears, confusion and often times sheer anger that it has not come my way. I have had years of constant control along this road that have led me to one life-changing conclusion...

I don't have control over it at all.

Yes. My steering of the love ship has been fruitless because God is the one who should be steering it. While it may be His choice for me to be single, there is a reason for it and no matter what I do, His plan for my life will prevail. There isn't a worry, a moment of anger or a pit of confusion that will stop it, so why am I wasting that energy? Quite simply...

I. GIVE. UP.

That's right. I completely and totally give up the control to God. I lay it down right in front of Lord knowing that it was always yours in the first place. You have merely been waiting for the moment for me to give it to you. IT IS YOURS!

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I will not toil over it, run after it or try to figure it out. I will not plan it out in my head or orchestrate a picture in my mind of who it will be. When it comes to love, if it doesn't come from you, I don't want it. Point. Blank. Period.

I am completely open to your picture of it. I know that love will come in an unlikely package and it will be the best one that I have ever opened. God, I know that if it is in your will, it is you and you alone that will make it happen. Your will for love in my life be done.

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And really...this should translate to EVERYTHING in our lives. If God doesn't send it, return that bad boy right to the sender. He orchestrates everything in our lives for our good because we love Him. Control in everything is not yours, it is HIS.

This is undoubtedly easier said than done but try your hardest to take a breath, drop that elephant of anxiety from your chest and rest in His perfect timing.  The picture He paints is different for each and every one of us but one thing is for sure...they are ALL masterpieces. 

 SHIRT -  God is Dope  | Shoes - Target (shown in size 12, sorry out of stock,  similar HERE ) | Ankle Pants - ASOS Tall (similar  HERE ) | Crossbody - Forever 21 | Earrings -  Candid Art   Photo credit -  Lakeela Smith

SHIRT - God is Dope | Shoes - Target (shown in size 12, sorry out of stock, similar HERE) | Ankle Pants - ASOS Tall (similar HERE) | Crossbody - Forever 21 | Earrings - Candid Art

Photo credit - Lakeela Smith