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The Freedom to be Happy

A happy consequence of these past few years has been the time to step away from all of life’s distractions and really focus on ME.  I spent many hours reflecting on personal and professional goals.  About 5 years ago, I stepped away from my full-time job as a Development Specialist for a non-profit agency to pursue the blog.  Giving Chicks And Salsa all my attention really allowed me the freedom to challenge myself in a way I had never done before.  I had to be specific about my goals and direction.  Without discipline, I knew I would end up disappointed.  So on this journey, there were some pivotal lessons that I have learned that I wanted to share. 


Don’t Fear Tomorrow

I used to fear the future chronically.  I took a risk, and the destination was unknown.  Learning lesson #2 is what made me look forward to tomorrow rather than fear it.

Ride The Wave

From my first post to my first collaboration to the start of Digital Chicks Media, any time an opportunity was presented, I said yes and turned wherever the tide took me.  This ended up being a rewarding and winning strategy.  

Own Your Story

I had heard about owning your story when I attended the Style Collective conference early on. In paving my own path, I got to know my story better than ever.  I had become my own boss and made every little and big decision along the way. Being intimately involved with my destiny made me own that story in a way I never had before.

Shop this One Shoulder Top Here | My TShirt Dress is Linked Here | My Straw Bag is from Amazon and is Linked Here

It may sound cheesy, but manifestation works, and it took a global pandemic to make me step back to see what I wanted from my life clearly.  This post would not be complete without a shout-out to my favorite and life-changing book, The Celestine Prophecy. This book is more than a novel; it is a blueprint on how to pay attention to the signals in the universe.  The book so accurately describes nature’s way of putting us on a path that once you see the signs, there is so much that the universe reveals to you. 

If you made this far into my post, I hope you found some of this in some way motivational or inspiring.  Thank you for being part of my tribe.

Your Chick,


Chicks Picks:

Make an Impression Anywhere and Anytime: 5 Tips for Making it Happen

Since starting Chicks And Salsa I have found myself in new and unfamiliar situations so many times.  Five years ago if you asked me to walk into a room full of strangers and indulge in ‘small talk’, I would have run for the hills.  Now, the prospect of meeting new people excites me! 

Being forced to step out of my comfort zone has taught me a lot about myself. Here are a few tips I have learned along the way to make uncomfortable situations more… comfortable. Some of these tips you have probably seen before but trust me, repetition is how to make it stick.
Make An Impression

Dress The Part

This is first because playing the part means looking the part.  Nothing helps me put my best foot forward like feeling confident in the space I am occupying. Dress for the occasion and feel good in what you wear, it will reflect in your mannerisms.  Our Mom always taught us that it’s better to be overdressed than underdressed — you will never feel out of place.  That has stuck with us throughout our lives (and probably explains a lot about us for those of you who know our family).

Here are a few versatile picks perfect for a multitude of occasions all under $50:

Do Your Research

Nothing makes me feel worse than not knowing about the host of an event or facts about the event itself.  Knowing what you are walking into is so important for nailing a conversation.  Finding a way that connects you to the space and the people within it is a true life hack for making an impression. Even just quickly browsing information on your phone in the Uber or in the bathroom can give you information that could create a real impact on someone later in the event. 

Listen (Mirror and Label)

I am a sharer and have a tendency to talk more than I listen.  Since ‘small talk’ does not come naturally to me despite practicing for years, I have finally found a technique that works wonders for getting other people to talk.  I recently watched a lecture on Masterclass on a technique called “Mirroring and Labeling” in which you repeat back key words from the conversation to help keep the conversation active and engaging.  It has changed my conversation game tenfold.  If you need some help in this department, check out this lecture: Masterclass with Chris Voss

Know Your Story

We all have heard about an ‘elevator speech’ and even if you are not a business owner or don’t work, it doesn’t mean you don’t have a story.  Almost 100% of the time people will ask, “So, what do you do?”  Are you prepared to answer this question in a way that is concise and coherent? If not, then now is a good time to get your story straight so that you can dig into the next level of the conversation. Preparing a quick FYI can be simple but make it unique. As women in this world, we are all trying to find our place. Take a moment to figure out what space you occupy and how to communicate that with others.

I have only recently gotten comfortable with my own story of discovery from being a stay at home mom, to a blogger, to a self-employed social media content creator and manager. It took me several years to put the pieces together in a coherent way, but I finally have my story down.

Stand Straight
Shop This Dress Here | Shop My Heels Here

Stand Straight

Sonia and I have TERRIBLE posture. In the past few years as we have become more confident and practiced sharing our story, dressing the part, and listening, we have started standing straighter.  In the same way a firm handshake is important, so is posture.  We have learned so much from Blush with Parmita, her YouTube tips for standing out have really changed the way we walk into a room and handle a conversation. This did not come naturally for us, but we practiced and reminded each other to do it so many times over the years that now it feels automatic. Without saying a word, how you stand and present yourself to the world can create the strongest and most lasting impression.

Hopefully, you needed to hear some of this, I know we need reminders all the time.  I would love to hear about your life hacks that have made you a better and more productive person.

Thanks for reading.

Your Chick,


An Ode to My Dog: CoCo

I didn’t grow up with a dog, in fact, the only pets I had were parakeets and rabbits.  Both of which I knew I would never have as an adult.

Just after I got married, 11 years ago, my husband surprised me with a maltipoo for my birthday. I was speechless and a little upset mostly because I had no idea what it meant to be a dog owner! Little did I know I was about to embark on a journey that would reshape the person I am today.

We named our first furry baby, Peanut. To be honest, before he arrived I had put him on a one week trial….if it didn’t work out, we were going to send him back.  Peanut was born in Texas and arrived via American Airlines where we met for the first time. He was 8 weeks old. Tiny, like a Peanut, with white curly hair. He was terrified. When I reached for him I immediately panicked because I didn’t know what to do next. Once I got hold of him from the back of his crate, he curled into the palm of my hand and calmed the nerves we both had and we both immediately felt a sense of relief. It was clear, I was consumed with so much love for this little animal.  It hit me in that moment that we had just become family. It didn’t take more than 5 minutes for me to make my decision that he was staying with us forever!

Most valuable lesson as a dog owner:

Unconditional love. Peanut gave me the gift of friendship with no strings attached.  He grew to love me and my husband as his furry parents and we loved him as our furry baby. He journeyed with us through two pregnancies and babies and accepted and protected our kids with every bone in his body.  We tragically lost Peanut to a coyote attack shortly after his 7th birthday and it felt just as tragic as the loss of any family member. There were days Peanut and I were besties and days we were frenemies, but we were family. In his absence I learned that he taught me to be more kind, more compassionate and more forgiving.

Today we have Coco another adorable maltipoo.  He is everything Peanut was and continues to be for us.  While having a dog can sometimes feel like work, there isn’t a moment that goes by that I’m not reminded of Peanut and how his legacy serves as a reminder to not take the human and dog relationship for granted.  I can definitely say I am a better person because of my furry babies and will be forever indebted to my dogs for the lessons they teach me everyday!

Your chick,

Chick Picks:

There are so many versions of this sweatshirt! The one I am wearing is linked here |  A slightly higher end version of it is linked here | Revolve has a distressed version here | Jeans are linked here | Booties are sold out, but I have linked something similar here |Check out the necklace that we all have here  see it on me here

I Spent 4 Hours and 49 Minutes on My Phone Today!! Should I be worried?

Ok, don’t judge me- but I really wanted to know exactly how much time I was spending on my phone so I measured it using the Moments App (ioS 12 also has a built in feature to help you keep track as well).  I was introduced to the app a while ago and I have been documenting my usage and time for the past few weeks.  I thought I was going to feel bad about the amount of time I spent, but I found something even more interesting and awesome instead!

If you have an iPhone here is how your can check your usage now!

Launch Settings from your Home screen. > Tap on Battery. > Wait a moment for Battery Usage to populate. > Tap on the Show Detailed Usage button to get a breakdown of foreground and background power usage. > Tap on Last 7 Days to get a broader look at power consumption over time.

**First pic is from one day, second pic is from seven day summary**


Screenshots from Moments App:

My Results

It turns out I get plenty of sleep – averaging 7-8 hours a night – awesome right!?! It also turns out that I spend almost 5 hours a day on my phone…I thought I would have negative feelings about this, but it turns out I don’t.  Let me explain.  I work at home and with my time divided between Digital Chicks Media and our blog, it makes sense to me that I would be spending the equivalent of a day’s work on my phone, aka my computer on the go. With social media and engagement at the core of what I do, I guess it is not surprising, but there is a silver lining to all this information.

Black and White Sweater Dress for $35 (available in every color) another one I love is linked here | Loafers are Chanel, shop similar here | My go to red lipstick is linked here 

The Silver Lining

I am living day-to-day moments for most of my day – that is time that I am spending with my family, at the gym, cooking, driving, etc.  That is a nice find that somehow I can’t ignore.  I actually felt good about that, is that weird?  My kids get home from school around 3:30PM and go to bed around 8PM. The main thing I try hard to work on is the amount of time I spend on my phone while they are home. I want to make sure that those 8 hours of living are happening sans my phone while my family is together.

Something my husband and I try to do walk away from our devices to resist the temptation to not be present in the moment while the kids are home.  While work can sometimes creep in trying to move to another room to finish out an email or call is a helpful way to recenter and be present in the time you are away from your phone.

The Takeaway

In life we have to strike a balance between the things that we do and find a place in our day to day lives for all of it.  Smartphones are a necessary evil that really are not that bad, they have enhanced our lives by so much.  So, next time you resent the amount of time you may be spending on your phone, find out how much time you are actually spending and let that knowledge either empower you or help you create changes you wish to see to make being in the moment more meaningful.

Your Chick,


Chick Picks: