Guilty Pleasures

I’m confessing that I may be a little bit addicted to travel. There has to be a travel anon group out here somewhere.

I try to convince myself that I am not that bad when it comes to travel, because I have not been to too many places, but I know a great deal when I see one! When that opportunity comes; you need to be ready, willing and able!

Pop open the Moscato, because I am about to be MIA! Notice the MIA on the bottle of Moscato! I can’t make this stuff up! Lol

I have not traveled since my last fiasco in September when I left the DR and I am a little sad I am going to miss the infamous Be Mine Punta Cana group trip next month! But…

Ironically, being an anxious introvert, I have been looking, researching, and comparing travel packages in Jamaica, Tulum, Puerto Rico and I have even considered going back to Santo Domingo. This time, it’s going to be a new experience.

Planning to travel can be very challenging, in my opinion. Some travelers would leave it up the travel agents. I am determined to figure this out and to stay knowledgeable on how and when to travel. I have shared a lot of my secrets here on my blog on all the great travel deals I run across. It looks as if I hit the jackpot again!

Skyscanner is my best friend! This app manages to find great travel deals with many of the major airline carriers, except Southwest. I don’t know how they do it; but most of the time their information is very accurate.

When I ran across this flight from HOU to MIA, I just couldn’t believe my eyes. I had to dig a little further for more details and to determine what was the catch. I’m sure this deal is not for everyone, just the BASIC travelers like myself!

United ran a deal from HOU to MIA during Valentine’s week! It does require you to embark on an evening flight departure, but on the upside it’s nonstop, (approximately 2h25m ~so no long flights here.

I didn’t want to travel solo and I didn’t know who to tell!

Hmmmm… now who can travel during a weekday, take time off from work, pack a carryon bag and be ready to travel 2-weeks out for a trip to Miami?

Is it you?

I have not fully worked out the logistics yet; I am still raising teenage boys! How do I tell them Momma is going on vacation again? These guilty pleasures I am experiencing. Is this self love or selfishness?

When I woke up today, I was led to sit upon this hill and meditate. I had originally planned to relax in bed all day, but I got up anyway and made my way to the park with my yoga mat and my mother’s crocheted Afghan.

There is a deal out there for you! When the opportunity comes, I hope you don’t feel guilty about booking yourself a vacation, even if it’s a staycation, do it for yourself, because if you don’t, who will?

Until next time…

Shalom

Raquél

#guiltypleasuresmia #travel #dream #boulonhotels #skyscanner #thanksUnitedAirlines #ihopeiamnotatraveladdict #GodisGoodallthetime

#grace #mercy #justgrateful

Top 100 Restaurants in 2018

As I was browsing through my emails, I ran across this article from OpenTable. I did not participate in this selection of restaurants, but I was curious to see if any of Houston’s restaurants were on their list. If it’s one thing I truly enjoy it’s eating out and trying new restaurants.

What I discovered is that NY and Chicago dominated the list with their exquisite taste, with California also making the list.

You’ll see all varieties ranging from American, French, Italian, Steakhouses, Sushi and even my favorite, Tex Mex!

Here is what I found in the Houston area. Can’t wait to try it.

Check it out for yourself.

http://www.opentable.com/lists/best-restaurants-in-america-for-2018

QueenLyfe

I am so happy to see more people working and branding their own ideas and walking in their purpose with the support of their community. Check out Houston’s own QueenLyfe started by Candace Strother.

QueenLyfe is a non-profit corporation whose mission is to promote financial literacy, creative expression, healthy relationships, mentorship and civic engagement through their workshops and events for multi-cultural women of all ages.

One initiative I’ve been able to participate in is the Mental Wellness Walk. The group meets at 8am and are introduced with warm greetings. A short warmup and stretch exercise is done before 2 1/2 mile walk around Hermann Park!

In addition, there is a guest speaker to pour life into your spirit to discuss mental wellness and how you can apply tools to your life to help you maintain a good mental state of mind.

It’s a great time to connect with other women and talk it out while you walk.

Connect with yourself and join their last Mental Wellness Walk for this season. Saturday, October 20, 2018 8am.

To learn more on how you can support QueenLyfe, visit their website below!

“Love Yourself First Everyday”

https://queenlyfe.org/ways-to-give/

Escape to see the Sun!

This year has been a year of stranger things. Traveling overseas once again to the Dominican Republic, traveling to Puerto Rico, self publishing my second book, (The Love Experience) a book release party, book signings, raising teenagers, teen drivers ed completion, working full time, trying to pursue other job opportunities to supplement income, Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Maria, visiting our State Capitol in Austin, taking on extra projects at work, celebrating 20 years of working for the church, and also celebrating the MLB Houston Astros World Series Championship.

I am so grateful for these opportunities and also grateful for the loving people in my circle. Most grateful to the Lord for allowing me to experience it all. As I look back to gently reflect on my year, it was a blessed year.

If you are working hard and you feel as if you never get a break, sometimes you need to escape just to experience the best sunlight. Yes, you wake up everyday to your normal routine, but take the time to getaway, even if it’s just for one day. You need to take that time to just shine!

L’Auberge Casino in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Only a short two hour drive from Houston, TX. This casino has restaurants, boutiques for shopping, a spa, a lazy river and cabanas for lounging by the pool. The Golden Nugget is also right next door. This was my first time ever visiting here. I was impressed.

Jack Daniels bar has some of the best garlic Parmesan wings. I should’ve brought hone a box before I left. Notice the US flag hanging above, it was meticulously made with lots of chains. Very unique work of art. Kuddos to the artist!

The pool area had plenty of loungers, cabanas, and two jacuzzis. Scenic and serene. This would be a great place to throw a party. Reflecting back on my year. I am blessed. God is Glorious! All the Time!

MLB World Series 2017 ~ Houston Astros 1st Championship

Congratulations again to our Houston Astros on winning the MLB World Series 2017! The entire team did an excellent job making baseball fun again! Go Correrra, Altuve, Springer! Correrra got down on his knee and proposed to his girlfriend immediately after the game. How can you say no to a champion? She’s one lucky chica! They won game 7 in Los Angeles against the LA Dodgers and came home to celebrate with a parade. #EarnedHistory

My coworkers all came together to support and participate in the history making celebration. Kirby Starchild Davis made us these fabulous T-shirts!

So grateful our employers let us leave to partake in the festivities. Around noon we were off to have some lunch and some fun.

Tasha Royal (Luv this Power Woman) invited us to Live Sports Bar & Grill at Main @ Preston served up a great strawberry salad with grilled chicken, walnuts, feta cheese, over mixed greens. Very good. These cute sliders that I️ didn’t get to taste. Those look like hearty burgers to me. My girls were full!

Jaz had a bowl of Fettuccine Alfredo, before I️ could even ask, her food was devoured. We must’ve been some hungry souls for food, laughter and fun! Thanks Tasha. Truly admire your grind. She knows how to build a brand and her empire. So proud of you Tasha.

Although we didn’t make it to the front of the parade route or City Hall, everyone was marked safe and we had a great time.

I’m so grateful for the Lord’s Protection. His grace is sufficient for us all.

Signing off… Until next time

#Author #Blogger #Poet

Raquel Helm

Deserted Hearts

God is… He is everything. He is a light even to those who have nothing. It is not His desire that we suffer, but nonetheless He is always a comforter and a very present help. He loves them and us just the same. No one is esteemed above the other. That’s how he wants us to treat each other, but are we really unbiased on how we treat the poor, the less fortunate? We want to turn our backs on them. It’s not our problem how they live their lives. Just keep on walking by. They’re peasants in our lives.

He found them in a desert, a windy, empty land. He surrounded them and brought them up, guarding them as those he loved very much. Deuteronomy 32:10 NCV

What does it take to live a life to care for the poor? It’s a calling on your life that many do not heed to. It’s a calling that is not for everyone to accept, but if you’re that one! That one person that knows you can take care of only one person that is poor, you will find it in your heart to help where you can help, even if it’s just one dollar. You never know how a little can go a long way in their life.

Give a little of your life to help those in need.

Thank you Father, that you are near to me even when my heart is broken and my strength has failed. Thank you that you find me in my wilderness and you will restore me to joy.

~Found in a Desert

Be Sill and Know Daily Devotional