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Just Give me the Light

Warning. I really liked this outfit and photos so there are a plethora of them. Like 12. There is also different lighting in almost every photo because the sun was going bananas. It’s cool though because it shows you that you should never compare yourself to others because what you are comparing yourself to could just be great lighting. Love yourself, love your lane and by all means, take 1000 selfies in some bomb lighting. Let’s get to outfit shall we?…

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Can we talk about this jean jacket? It’s from Alloy (which is clearly one of my favorite tall retailers). Also, If you have been on their site, the beautiful Jamie Lea is rocking it in the fiercest way possible. As you can see on her and I, this jacket has an amazing cut and is super flattering. Alloy really constructed it right. It’s tall in the right places. You know what I mean. Some “tall” clothes out there are just tall all over. The arms, the body, even the dang pockets are over cut. This jacket does not do that. I love the wash, quality and price. It’s only $64.90. Also, Alloy always has some sort of amazing coupon code so if you don’t see it on their site, google that bad boy.

I’m geeked about the jacket and also pumped about the sneakers…here’s why…

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As you may or may have not seen, I recently took a trip to the Nike World Campus in my hometown of Beaverton, Oregon to visit one of my High School basketball coaches. His name is Sam McCracken. He was a great coach and now he is the founder, General Manager and visionary of the Nike N7 fund and collection. These kicks (specifically the Nike Air Huarache City Utility Premium N7) are one of my favorites from the line. I love them but I love what they do even more. All of the proceeds from the Huarache (and entire line), are given back to youth sport and physical activity programs in the Native American Community. The line is fire and the power of change that it provides is phenomenal. I am so proud of my coach and his entire team for all that they do.

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Whhhhhhew that was a lot of scrolling. I hope you are still with me!

I seriously love this outfit because it’s very much the direction I am going with my style. I am changing in so many ways right now and the way I am dressing is one of them. This is me 76% of the time (hence the 1000th time you have seen these skinny jeans).

I look forward to sharing all of these changes with you and what I am rockin along the way. Thank you for being there, thank you for being you, thank you for giving me your light and love. I appreciate it more than you will ever know.

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       

GIANT ANNOUNCEMENT

Click the image for the exclusive announcement in US Weekly

Click the image for the exclusive announcement in US Weekly

I have been sitting on this for MONTHS so I'm going to get right to it...

I am a cast member on season 3 of My Giant Life on TLC!!!

Errrrrrrrrrr. Stop the record. What!?! Alicia. That giant word goes against everything you stand for right?

Yes. It absolutely did.

The word GIANT had held me hostage since the first bully pierced me with it. It used to obliterate my confidence and crush my soul. In fact, when the show first came out I BLASTED it on my website. How dare they use that word in a show about tall women! I was ready to ride out with a sign, start a hunger strike and camp in front of the TLC headquarters in solidarity for my tall sisters. I refused to watch it and didn't until one day when I was approached to be on the show.

I watched season 2 and elected a committee comprised of friends and family to watch it too. After the viewing party, I thought it would be a great way to share my story and an amazing opportunity to be the first African American on the show but just couldn't get over the title.

Then, I started getting emails, texts and comments (from people that had no idea that I was being considered for the show, many I didn't even know) telling me that I should be on it. It was confirmation in so many ways but I STILL couldn't get over the word.

I continued to explore the process, prayed like crazy and sat down with the only person in this world that I know would give it to me straight...my Mama.

You do have a Giant Life she said. BOOM. The light turned on.

I was still letting THEM WIN.

I was letting their definition of a word become a fact in my life that was holding me back from my purpose. I was still believing a lie. I was letting the bullying linger and lock me down.

The truth is that I have GIANT faith, giant goals and an amazing, beautiful, God-given giant life that I am going to share with the world soon.

I shared a lot. From my virginity to issues with self-love, I bore pieces of my soul. I still shudder at my vulnerability at times. It's a gamble for sure but it's something I feel God has placed in my life for a reason. I am a ball of terrified excitement, placing faith over fear and I am so blessed to have you right there with me!

I will keep you updated. The coming weeks will be full of new experiences that I can't wait to share. Buckle up baby...it's time to jump in with both 12's...let's go!

Zip and Laced

Long Line Pocket Knit Beige - Tall Girls UK / Leather Look Leggings - Tall Girls UK  (36" inseam)/Boots (size 12) - Sam Edelman (sorry...2 seasons ago)/Tunic - Forever 21 Plus/Choker - Alloy Apparel/Necklace - Charlotte Russe  Photo Credit:  Lakeela Smith

Long Line Pocket Knit Beige - Tall Girls UK/Leather Look Leggings - Tall Girls UK (36" inseam)/Boots (size 12) - Sam Edelman (sorry...2 seasons ago)/Tunic - Forever 21 Plus/Choker - Alloy Apparel/Necklace - Charlotte Russe

Photo Credit: Lakeela Smith

When you find a cardigan that is long in the body AND in the arms, you stop whatever you are doing and order it right away! This is certainly the case with the Long Line Pocket Knit Beige Cardi from Tall Girls UK. It's part of their new fall collection that is completely loved by me and I know that you will love it too.

Yes, I wore these leggings in the last post and guess what? There is nothing wrong with that. Recycling clothes is perfectly fine and at the end of the day who cares!?! Rock a basic piece like the leather look legging with multiple fits. That is what basic pieces are for.

Now...please don't kill me...but the boots are from 2 seasons ago and are no longer available (sad face). But here are some fun lace-up boot options that I found in various price points:

LTS Harriet Lace Up Knee High (up to size 15)

LTS Lola Combat Boot (comes in 2 colors, up to size 15)

Bella Vita Kirby Bootie (up to size 12)

Women's March Lace-Up Boot (up to size 13)

Yet another fit you will see me in all season! I've been on the go so much lately and crave comfy, chic styles. What you you looking forward to wearing this season?

Have a fabulous Monday and a crazy-good week lovely!